While I’m “away” on “maternity leave,” I’ve invited some amazing women to come and share their hearts with y’all. These ladies will be dropping in to inspire you with their strengths + their shortcomings–because in this age of Mommy Wars, what we really need is a reminder that none of us can Do. It. All.
Today, I have the pleasure of welcoming Katie, co-author of The Cocobee (how cute is that name??) to our series!
Hi there! I’m Katie Kolbrick, and as Bethany said, I blog over at The Cocobee with my sister-in-law, Paige. I am a former Big 4 auditor turned stay-at-home mom/photographer/online fitness coach.
I have two daughters: a 2.5 year old and an almost one year old (what the WHAT). They’re constantly keeping me on my toes. There is never a dull moment in our house, that is for sure!
We hail from Covington, WA, which is about 40 minutes southeast of Seattle. It’s far enough away that going into Seattle is considered a pretty big deal, but it’s close enough that it is totally doable and I find excuses from time to time to go up there and visit some friends from my past life in the corporate world. You know, just to remind myself every now and then that I am an adult and can have grown-up conversations.
If you’re familiar with the accounting world in the slightest, you’ve probably heard the term “busy season.” This is the time of year where accountants ramp up from working 40 hours a week to upwards of 80 (or 90, or 100) for several weeks straight to meet certain deadlines. Well, I left public accounting because I wanted my “busy season” to be raising babies and growing a business that lit my soul on fire.
I am always in awe of work-at-home moms! And with two kids under 3? You have my deepest admiration. I feel like I’m already getting a sense of what you do (and it sounds like a LOT!), but just for kicks, I’ll go ahead and ask: What DO you do, Katie?
I spend most of my days regulating snacks between both girls and keeping my youngest baby’s nap schedule intact. We like to go on walks to Starbucks with a dear friend and her grandson (who happens to be the son of my husband’s and my best friends).
Now that my oldest is old enough to express her imagination, I’m doing everything I can to let it grow. Most days we’ll end up building the “biggest tower in the WORLD” about four times over, and have some sort of dance party either to “Let It Go” or “Shake It Off.” I’m not even sure how I’m able to pull this off, but somehow, some way, dinner ends up on the table around 5:30pm.
Awesome sauce! I wish I was better at the playing-with-little-kids thing. You’d think, after five of them, I would be, but I’m not. I guess it’s one of the things I don’t do. And speaking of… What don’t you do?
I love my life and am very grateful for it, but sometimes it can get overwhelming and frustrating, especially for a Type-A personality like myself. There are several things that I don’t do, and I’ve only recently come to terms with them.
- I don’t clean. Yeah, no, I really don’t. I love the idea of cleaning. I love the idea of taking time during the day or after the kids go to sleep to tidy up a little bit. The reality, though? I spend nearly every free moment working. I’m either editing, networking, blogging, posting on social media, planning, emailing…anything but cleaning. My husband ends up graciously doing the heavy lifting when it comes to cleaning the house. I am very grateful for this and know that one day, the time will come where I’ll be able to pick up (pun intended) the slack. Just not right now.
- I can’t keep anything besides my kids, my dog and my husband alive. I’ve had several friends give me potted plants over the years and every single one of them has died. I went on a “let’s have fresh herbs all day, er’y day!” kick a few weeks ago, but then it was abnormally hot outside and I forgot to water them…and they all died. Well, that’s not true. The rosemary miraculously survived. When I say “miraculously” I mean my husband moved it to the best part of our yard and has continued to water it for me. Yes, I know. He’s amazing and I’d be pretty lost without him.
Ugh, cleaning! I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: trying to keep your house clean while small people are present is like trying to brush your teeth while chewing Oreos. Necessary, but pretty much pointless.
Before we say good-bye, do you have any tips or tricks to share with all the mamas out there?
If you follow The Cocobee, or know me personally, you can attest to the fact that my life is far from perfect. I have always struggled with being a perfectionist. In fact, I like to call myself a recovering perfectionist. There are some days where I fully embrace my shortcomings and feel like I can take on the world. Conversely, there are days where all I see are the messes around my home or the times that I am short with my kiddos.
One thing we have worked hard to create in our home is an environment filled with a heck of a lot of love and grace. At the end of the day, I would rather go to bed with a happy heart and a sink full of dishes than feeling all grumpy and bitter sitting in a spotless house. I would say that committing to reminding yourself on a daily basis that it’s okay that you can’t “do it all” is the first (huge) step in granting yourself a whole lotta grace. It is okay to just do the best you can right now, in this moment, and then try to do a little better tomorrow.
The other truth I’ve been speaking a lot to myself recently is that you have the power to change your circumstances. There have been times that I have felt like I need to stick something out because I started it (hello, accounting). It is very freeing to realize that you don’t have to continue down the path that you are on, if you feel it is not right for you and your family. Of course, there are always limitations to this and in some cases we are not able to change certain pressures in our lives. However, if you are feeling stuck, I assure you that you are not alone.
Two things have always helped me in these situations: praying often and asking for help. While they might not offer immediate relief, it is comforting to be reminded that you are never alone and so very loved! Just something to keep in mind when things start to feel like they’re too much.
That is some wonderfully deep wisdom right there. Thank you so much for stopping in to encourage us today, Katie!
If you’ve been inspired by today’s post, please be sure to visit Katie and Paige over at The Cocobee! I always love their perspectives on motherhood, womanhood, and the occasional delicious recipe!
And if you live in the Seattle area and are looking for an awesome photographer, check out www.katiekolbrickphotography.com (Although, you may have to act fast–she books up quick!)
We have been blessed by some wonderful voices so far in this series…but there’s still one missing. Yours!
Are YOU a mom who Can’t Do It All? (And really, who can?) We’d love for you to share your story here at Baking Humble Pie! Just contact me with your previously unpublished submission of 500-1000 words, answering the following questions:
Who are you?
What do you DO?
What DON’T you do?
What tips + tricks can you share from the trenches?
I can’t wait to hear from you!!
photo credit: www.katiekolbrickphotography.com