Our next mom letting us peak into her day-to-day is our Lead Usability Engineer, Liz Mauer. Liz has a son named Jason who is less than 1 year old. Liz is one of my dearest friends at the office – always shooting you straight with her honest opinion. Her and her hubs also have 2 dogs and 2 cats, their first “kids”. You can hear more about how Liz prepared her house and her pets for Jason’s arrival last summer here.
What’s your work schedule?
I work a traditional work week – 9am to 5pm, Monday through Friday.
How do you handle child care?
After 10 months on various wait lists, we were finally awarded a spot at a day care near our house. I couldn’t (and still can’t) believe the demand for quality child care in the city. We felt like we won the lottery. So now Henry goes there Monday thru Friday while we are at work.
Where do you work during the day?
In a cubicle most days, but many times I get to go out into the field and talk with parents about our products and that is a lot more fun.
What’s your favorite part of your work?
Not many people know what a Usability Engineer does, but it means that I focus on making our products easy and enjoyable for parents to use. I love trying to help our consumers feel more confident in their roles as parents – a very exciting but also scary and overwhelming time in most peoples’ lives. I want to help make new parents feel more comfortable and capable during that transition.
What do you find difficult/tricky/comical about your current set-up? What would you change if you had a magic wand?
Oh, the things I would change if I had a magic wand. I’d be funnier, tanner, taller, and a contestant on America’s Next Top Model. And I’d have a giant tower of money to swim in like Scrooge McDuck and never have to pay taxes. And my roof wouldn’t be leaking.
In all seriousness, the most difficult thing about my current setup is not really a thing – it’s the feeling that by trying to juggle working and being a mom, I’m doing a mediocre job at both. Every morning I feel as if I have turned into the Tazmanian Devil, just whirring around like a crazy person. I count myself lucky if I show up to work on time and fully dressed without spit up on myself, and I dropped Jason at daycare instead of one of the dogs. And I have just ONE kid. How does everyone else do it and seem so calm and collected? How is all of their hair perfectly blow-dried? How do they have time to prepare all-natural, organic, super-duper-genius-making lunches and snacks and dinners for their kids?
So if I had a magic wand, I would either a) make myself into one of those moms I admire, or b) cast a spell on those moms so they show up to work 15 minutes late with spit up on their shoulders. Bwahahaha!
What advice would you give to other moms or first-time expectants about how to balance work and life?
I’m such a rookie and I’m completely making things up as I go along. I don’t know that I should be dispensing any advice to anyone… I want everyone to give me advice! But this I can definitely say: if you are pregnant and live in Atlanta and going to need day care in the city, get on the wait lists much earlier than I did! Oh, and get ready for a giant hole to be blown right into your budget.
Thank you, Liz!!!