Well, friends, it is the last business day before the April 15th tax deadline. I have been trying to write something smart or funny or poignant or impactful, but my brain is tired. It is so filled with numbers that I can’t quite make sense of anything other than taxes. So instead of a typical post, I thought it might be fun to answer ten random questions.
When did you find out you were pregnant and I found out I was pregnant on March 12, 2011 following the Irish Channel parade. I had started to suspect I might be, but I wanted to wait to take a test until I really believed it was true. I left work that Saturday at four and met Mark down on the parade route. On our way home, we stopped at the Walgreens on Tchoups and bought a test. The checkout girl winked and said “Good Luck!” I found it ironic that other than her, no one else knew our lives were about to change!Thank goodness I didn’t have any green beer, because we saw two bright blue lines right away!
How did you tell your family? We bought my parents a potted plant to thank them for helping us with our garden. The card read, “I can’t wait to see the flowers bloom in November. Love Baby, A” It took a moment for it to sink in and then the hugging commenced! Since Mark’s family live in NYC and North Dakota, we skyped with each of them and told them that our dog Beignet wanted to announce that she was going to be a big sister.
What is your favorite childhood memory? I have so many, but the one I always remember fondly was going to the zoo. When I described my love for Audubon Zoo a few months ago, I mentioned that I have vivid memories of taking the trip in the car from Lakeview to Uptown. We’d stop at a bakery called Your Daily Bread and pick up a spinach cheese loaf. It was always warm and fresh and made the whole car smell delectable. I loved everything about the zoo, but what I remember is being together as a family and sitting in the grass on a pretty day and having a picnic surrounded by the sights and sounds of a place that felt magical.
What is your favorite memory you’ve made with Jane? I will never forget the excitement Jane experienced at Mardi Gras this year. I have a love for that season that knows no bounds, and there was a little place inside of me that feared she wouldn’t like it. Well, from the moment she heard her first marching band I knew I need not worry. She danced to the music and smiled and waved at the riders. It was amazing how much she understood at such a young age. To think that we will share a love for carnival is so exciting. I cannot wait for the day when she can ride with me in Muses!
Who takes care of Jane while you and your husband work? I am lucky enough to have two of the most amazingly gracious parents who live nearby. When I went back to work, my dad retired and stayed with Jane four days a week. Mark has one day a week off so he stayed with her on the other day. I love that two of the best men I know have had such a meaningful presence in her life. When she turned one, we started her at St. George’s Episcopal School on Tuesdays and Thursdays. She has thrived there, and in fact, just this morning
ran, ok, walked really fast into her classroom and into her teacher’s arms.
How do you balance working and being a mom? Until Jane came along, I would have described myself as a perfectionist who over joins and can’t be a participant because I must be a leader. After struggling to maintain that aspect of myself once Jane arrived, I realized that there is little happiness in perfection. At the end of the day, no one (especially Jane) remembers how perfect that tart came out or how perfect that party was. So I have adopted the “good enough” philosophy. Every day, I wake up trying to be the very best version of myself in all that I do, but sometimes, good enough will have to do. Letting go of perfect is freeing in a way I never knew. I find myself happier and more content than I have ever been. I’ve also realized that Langenstein’s makes a darn good tart so I can buy one from there and spend the time I would have spent in the kitchen in the yard with Jane and Mark.
What is your favorite thing to do when you spend time as a family? Lately, I wish I had more time with them. Even with tax season, we’ve been able to squeeze in some of our favorite things. My favorite part of living Uptown is how walkable it is. We love to get up early on a Sunday morning and walk to Laurel Street Bakery. We all snack on a freshly made pastry and Mark and I drink a little coffee. With enough caffeine to get us going, we walk through the neighborhood eventually stopping at Laurel Street playground. It is a child’s oasis – a little park that pops up in the middle of everything. They have some swings there that Jane adores. In fact, she calls them “Wheee’s.” I could watch her swing all day!
Do you have any special plans with the extra time you’ll have once busy season is over? Sleep?! I am looking forward to picking Jane up from school and exercising again. I cannot wait to get back into the kitchen. Eating catered meals at work is novel at first, but by now I want a good low cal home cooked dinner! And I cannot wait to have a Saturday free so that we can get up, go to the Julia Street Farmers Market, and then take Jane to the Children’s Museum for the first time.
When you have some mommy time, what are your favorite things to do? I love spending time with my friends. Every mom needs a little girl time. I love having brunch at Coquette and boutique shopping following that. I could live in the spa at the Ritz Carlton. Seriously, if they let our family move in there, I might consider it. And, I also love to occasionally splurge on a private pilates class at Romney pilates.
Do you have any big summer plans? We do! We will be going to New York for a week to spend time with Mark’s family. Aside from New Orleans, it is my very favorite place on earth. We will also be going to Aspen with my family. The trip was our Christmas gift from my parents, and I cannot wait to go back there. I spent time there in college as a nanny, but I haven’t been back as an adult. We are ending our summer with a trip to Los Angeles for a family wedding. I am in no way beach ready, but I suppose I’ve got a few months to get there!