Author: Ashley & Carrie
If you missed it, here's what we asked and their answers:
Who are you & what encouraged you to set up Vitamom Club?
Ashley: I’m Ashley and I’m a registered dietitian. A lot of my clients are moms that struggle with feeding themselves and their families consistently. THey also worry a lot about if their kids are getting enough fruits and vegetables. I wanted to create something that gives families a little bit of nutrition insurance—vitamins and supplements that can fill in the gaps especially when we’re having a really busy week and aren’t able to focus on meal planning.
I also wanted to give Moms something they can trust. We don’t have time to scour the internet to decide which products are best. We don’t even have time to touch up our roots. WIth VitaMom, we have everything your family needs and they actually taste good so no fighting about taking vitamins.
And of course, giving Moms something EASY is the best part…a club program that delivers right to your doorstep. I know I don’t want to bring kids into the store more than I have to. We’re here to help you choose which products are right for you and give you real life tips to make your life easier.
Carrie: Hi, I’m Carrie and who am I? That’s pretty deep! Mostly I am a mom to 4 boys and a bonus mom to a couple of kids and I also have my first granddaughter so I guess I’m also a VitaGrandMom.
My background is exercise physiology, I’m almost done with my masters in health psychology and through the years I just love helping people get to their ‘aha’ moment to help them make those changes. I was also a stay at home mom for 13 years and we homeschooled during that time. So I’ve done a lot of different things.
Why did I set up/start Vitamom Club? Because as moms, it can really be lonely at times, making you feel isolated. I was a stay at home mom and often felt that way, so I felt like we need to support each other whether you’re working mom, a stay at home mom or homeschooling mom, it doesn’t matter, we now need to be supporting each other.
What’s your secret to managing family & work life?
Ashley: Prioritizing rest! I try to avoid the productivity mindset of always needing to be doing something or be busy. Being able to work from home allows me to break up my day with home chores, work, and breaks. I like to go outside for a walk with our dog for a break between tasks to reset. I also try to avoid the “should” mindset.Thank you to Carrie for that piece of advice. Whenever I think I “should” do something, I stop to evaluate why I feel this way. It usually ends up being because of an expectation that I feel I need to meet. I can then take time to reflect on whether if you think you should do something especially if I don’t necessarily need or want to do it.
For example, have you ever felt like you ‘should’ attend all your kids’ events, like bake-sales but then get stressed because of the time it takes, it can cost us energy, our time and sometimes our mental health so being able to check in and being able to commit to the ones you enjoy is perfectly ok.
Carrie: So on a different note to Ashley, I’m not sure if I have a secret because life is constantly changing and that's kind of a ‘me’ thing.
There is no one secret that works for everyone, you have to learn to kinda roll with the punches and not be too rigid.
I do believe in routines but it has to be a flexible routine.
So that’s probably what I would say is my secret. To have some structure but flexible structure.
What’s the best bit about your daily routine & What’s the hardest part?
Ashley: The best part of my daily routine is being able to spend quality time with my daughter after school! We get to spend the afternoon together doing whatever we feel like each day. We enjoy baking, crafts, going outside, visiting the library, and reading.
The hardest part of my daily routine is prioritizing what needs to be done each day and creating a routine. Now that I own my own business and there is not the same structure as a typical 40 hour work week, finding a routine that works for me has been a little challenging. This will always be a work in progress as things are ever-changing.
Carrie: So when my kids were I’d say we had more of a routine, now my own kids are grown, my bonus kids are still in school but they are back and forth between mum and dad’s house so their routine is a little wonky sometimes.
I would say my own personal routine (and I did start this when my kids were little) was getting up early; my kids were always early risers and I always claimed I wasn’t a morning exerciser but if I was going to get it in, I had to start in the morning.
I still kind of follow that - not doing anything heavy duty, I get up first and have a little quiet time, get my tea and a little bit of yoga and I would say that’s my best bit.
The hardest bit is being consistent with my routine, like when I haven’t slept well and still need to get up in the morning!
If you could do anything you like for a whole 24 hours, what would you choose to do? (no one to worry about, no financial restrictions, no kids to look after…)
Ashley: I would spend the day doing something fun outside with my best friend. We like hiking, kayaking, reading, and just playing outside.
Carrie: I would go to the beach and it doesn’t matter what time of the year it is, there’s something about being in front of that huge body of water and hearing the waves makes it so easy to just let go of whatever’s bringing me down. I would definitely be at the beach and not have to worry about anyone else and what anyone else is doing, just go there and be still and quiet.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given as a mom?
Ashley: The best advice I’ve received as a Mom is to go with the flow and remind yourself that you are doing your best. It often feels like you aren’t doing enough as a parent so it is important to keep reminding yourself that you are doing your best, even when it doesn’t feel that way. Giving your children the gift of your time and undivided attention is another great piece of advice. Kids just want to be with us in the moment—being present and mindful are the greatest things we can do as parents.
Carrie: Well, after my divorce, one of the best piece of advice that I was given from a friend going through a similar situation, I still share with other moms going through divorces is to just be patient, keep loving them, they figure things out - and they do. So that is probably it.
Another one- there’s no one way to parent, every child is different, each of my boys had to be disciplined differently because they’re all different human beings and what worked for one didn’t work for another. Just know that ‘You are doing ok!’ No matter what, you’re doing your best, there’s no right way or wrong way to parent. Just keep chugging along and getting up each morning. It’s a new start.
And one more bit of advice that I give to my friends, as your Kids get older, don’t freak out on them. They’re going to tell you things. And one of my goals was to have open communication with them so if you allow that, you need to be prepared to hear some things you don’t want to hear. And sometimes you’ll be thinking ‘right, i don’t need any more details’ but that is the best piece of advice I would give to moms, just don’t freak out, listen. Save the freak out for the times when you truly need to freak out because otherwise they’ll start tuning you out. They’ll know you mean business when you’re typically calm and openly listening to what they have to say. I learnt that but wish someone gave me that piece of advice when I needed it.