August 18, 2011 (5:50 pm)

A Day in My Life…

by Kristen Suzanne

A couple of weeks back, I opened up my Kristen’s Raw blog for questions on anything. I received two questions that were similar (posted below) and I thought it’d be appropriate to answer them on my Green Mommy Blog.

What does your usually day look like? I mean, you’re a mom of 1 year old. You workout daily. You also work on your blog and on other projects. I know it is hard to take care of baby and work too.  Is Kamea good baby who let you work? :-) Also, when you make your food do you make for Kamea the same one or you prepare for her different food? How often do you breastfeed her? It is still her main sources of calories intake? I am asking because I mom of little girl too and just want to get some inspiration. I know every mom want the best for her child and her family. Do you give her some source of omega3,6 fatty acid or she get it from your breast milk? I appreciate a lot for all your answers. Many thanks for your work for us.

Hi, Kristen :) love love love everything about Kristen Suzanne! You are one true inspiration. My question is ~ How does a typical day in your life look like? During the week or on the weekend? I always wanted to know:) I am a working mom to a beautiful, little girl (i work out of the house 9-5). A lot of times, I find myself wanting to eat raw, vegan, healthy, yummy…but cannot seem to organize myself or fit everything from preparing the food, playing with the baby, working out, etc etc into my daily schedule. and weekends are always full of Birthday parties, dinners at in laws :) etc. I want to know how you do it, and always with a huge smile on your face. I really adore You! ~with love, Magda (Joanna’s friend:)

For the first 6 to 7 months of Kamea’s life, I didn’t do much other than take care of her, take care of my family in general, and work. That’s a lot in and of itself! What was missing though was time for myself… time to exercise… time to read stuff other than research for work… etc. 

It was around 7-months for Kamea when I decided I needed to make some changes. It was time for this mama to take a bit of time for herself… every day! I knew that I wanted and needed to exercise. So, I warned told Greg that I’d need more help when it came to Kamea. I needed him to watch her more. I wanted time to exercise every day, even if it just meant I went to the health club and leisurely walked on the track. I needed him to help more, in general, so that I can get more things done in shorter time. For example, making lunch and dinner with Kamea strapped to me in a carrier is great and fun, but it means that prepping dinner is going to take me almost twice as long in some instances depending on what I’m making. Greg was a thousand percent supportive. He even went so far as to tell his business partner that she’s not to schedule morning meetings because that’s the time I go to the health club. Awesome, huh?

So, that covers the part about how I get my exercise time in every day. What about work? Well, that’s been a bit of a toughie to figure out and I’m still navigating the waters of figuring out the ideal work/family balance. Essentially, I reserve the time during Kamea’s napping for working… if I’m not napping with her or reading next to her while she naps. If I don’t get something done, so be it. I’m more interested in making sure that I’m well rested (and happy!) so that I can be the best mom possible for Kamea. Our pirate-style family bed means that I don’t leave her alone while napping because she could fall out. So, I moved my desktop into our bedroom to facilitate working while she naps. If I’m not on the computer, I have my iPhone to read from (using the Kindle app), surf the web, or tend to emails. Or… I nap with her. Her nap schedule isn’t really a schedule, but she usually takes two naps a day, and sometimes it’s only once a day. So, to answer the question above about whether Kamea lets me work? No, she doesn’t, but that’s ok because I don’t want to work when she’s awake. I reserve work time for when she naps. If I’m on a strict deadline, then I have Greg watch her if she’s awake, while I work.

Regarding food prep and feeding Kamea… she is primarily breastfed, but she has the option to eat off our plates whenever she wants. I don’t have restrictions for her regarding food so long as it’s not too hard for her to chew since she only has 8 teeth. And, since she gets so much breastmilk I’m not supplementing her with anything. Once the time comes, I’ll look into Udo’s oil for her (both the regular blend and the one with DHA-fish free) as well as other things like a multi, vitamin B12, probiotics, and vitamin D.

How do I handle all of the food prep in my house and keep it easy? Well, for starters, I have a husband who is content to eat whatever, as many times in a row as necessary. We both love huge salads and smoothies and that makes life easier.

Here are some tips:

Keep things stocked for pure success! I always have tons of options for organic vegan foods (raw and not raw). For example: an array of nuts, seeds, dried fruits, kale chips, granola (some raw and some not), nut milks (some raw and some not), tempeh, oats, beans (canned-BPAfree and dried… I use my pressure cooker to cook the dried variety), Fig soups, Gardein burgers, raw crackers (some homemade and some store bought), raw desserts stocked in my freezer, sprouted breads, and lots of bars (Pure bars, Boku bars, etc).

Organization rules! I have a method to my madness from the placement of my raw appliances to the stocking of my food, and as I wrote before, being well stocked is a must. Check out my guest blog posts at the Raw Divas for some great details. Part One! And, here is Part Two!

Big batches – that’s where it’s at! Greg and I both love huge smoothies, protein shakes, and salads. So, those make up the bulk of our raw diet. To make this easy, I like to have greens washed and ready to use. I keep my salad spinner full of washed and chopped romaine lettuce all the time (I probably wash and chop lettuce/greens 2-3 times a week). That way, I can just grab a big bowl, throw the lettuce in and I’m well on my way. The next part involves chopping the toppings and this takes 10-minutes or less and I like to chop fresh just before topping the salad to reduce oxidation. Finally, the trick for keeping this all quick and easy is to have my dressing already made. I make easy and mega delicious salad dressings about twice a week. Here are some favorites: 4-Ingredient Magic Dressing and Garlic Almond Dressing.

The same applies for things like black beans, lentils, and oats. I cook them in big batches so we can eat them for days on end. I keep the variety by changing the flavorings and toppings. For example, one night black beans are topped with salsa or raw dressing and gently steamed broccoli. Another night, I serve them with guacamole. Another night is with chopped veggies. When it comes to oatmeal (I could eat this stuff all day!), I keep the variety by having it one time with nut milk and chopped nuts, next I serve with molasses and hemp seeds, another time with chopped banana and coconut milk. Sometimes I make it savory and serve with spiralized zucchini, dice tomatoes and garlic. The options are endless and when you make a big batch of things like plain oats or beans, once a week, it saves you so much prep time. Be sure to store all of your foods in glass containers, too! I like mason jars and these.

Eating out (and delivery) for sanity! For the times that I just don’t feel like food prep, we either go out to eat (here are our favorite places: Chef Sara, Tru Food, and Chipotle) or I plan ahead and order raw foods.

What is my typical day like during the week? Since Greg and I both work from home, our week days and weekends don’t really get separated. The weekends tend to feel a bit more relaxed but for the most part a Tuesday is like a Saturday for us.

Here’s what happens! I wake up (Greg stays asleep since he works late into the night). I do my morning routine with Kamea (change her diaper, comb her hair, brush our teeth, wash my face, etc). Then, Kamea and I head downstairs where the first stop is the kitchen. I make a protein shake or some type of easy breakfast. Next, I set up the coffee pot with organic decaf coffee, and then I set out all of our supplements in little bowls for the day (we take our doses divided). Then, it’s play time. I read to Kamea and we play with toys. After about an hour or so, I wake Greg up so he can watch Kamea and I head to the gym. Door to door, I’m gone 1.5 – 2 hours. Once I’m home, I eat a quick post workout meal (usually a shake, nuts, and banana or date/fig). Kamea breastfeeds and then I play with her, and we decide what to do for lunch. Next is nap time where I work or nap with Kamea. Play with Kamea. Decide what to do for dinner. And, then we usually try to go on an adventure about 4-5 nights a week. We choose the evening if it’s during the summer because it’s cooler out. Otherwise, we go on adventures during the day. What is an adventure? Anything that doesn’t involve being at home! Going for a walk, going to the mall, Whole Foods, head to a resort and hang out, museum, Starbucks… you name it. We try to get out and show Kamea different things.

That’s my life in a nutshell. :)

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  • Lauren519

    That’s great, Kristen! You really are a super momma! I don’t work anymore, so I have a little lax time. I workout in the morning at home while the baby plays next to me. I count my reps out loud so she learns numbers. Haha! And my hubby is home from work around 3 or 4, so he takes over so I can make dinner. He is a huge help, but I am the one with the boobs! Lol! We have such great hubby’s! :) thanks for posting this! I’d love to see a post on what’s in your fridge/cabinets! Prob better for your other blog! ;)

  • Kate

    Your day seems the opposite of hectic……it must be so nice for your husband to be home during the day to help…..and your meals are all simple so you are not cooking meals that take up alot of time.  It is very nice of you to give us an example of a typical day.  Seems enjoyable and stress-free.

  • Kristen Suzanne

    It’s taken some adjusting as I get used to trying not to work so much. I love having him home. He works, but is available if I need him. :)

  • Michaela

    Thank you so much for this post:-) I think it is important to have little time just for ourself I workout in the morning too and my hubby take care of my girl, also when I prepare food (thats right when she”help”:-) it takes much more so when we have enough time I let her help when we don´t she plays with daddy.

  • Greenbeautygirl

    You are inspirational!

  • Frugal Vegan Mom

    Hi Kristen – I have a 6 mo. old and just quit my job last week to be a stay at home mama.  It’s much better, but WOW the days do go so fast, always something to get done, even with simple food prep.  Thanks for the great recipes & peek into your life!

  • Kristen Suzanne

    Awww! Thank you so much!!!

  • Kristen Suzanne

    Thank you :)

  • Good Girl Gone Green

    Thanks for sharing. Since I started my blog 2 months ago, I have been working so hard on it, all while  trying to balance my new found raw/vegan eating, my 10 month old and working out. These are all great tips and I am going to have to incorporate some in my day to day routine to keep my sanity

  • Teresa

    Oh what a wonderful post. It’s so nice to let us have a peek into your world.   I love oatmeal too—-endless healthy toppings.  Good for you for making your family including yourself a top priority.  Between healthy food, exercise and love ——you got a good routine going!

  • Kristen Suzanne

    Thank you! I’m enjoying life so much more now that I’m not imposing strict schedules on myself. Enjoying my family. So happy I asked Greg for more help! :)

  • Nicky

    Thank you so much for showing us your world! You are truly an inspiration and an incredible role model!!! Your family is so blessed to have you in their lives. Blessings, Nicky

  • Kristen Suzanne

    Thank you so much!

  • Anonymous

    Ha ha. Hayden just turned 2 and I still think anything outside of the house is like an adventure, especially if it is outside of a 15-minute away radius.

  • Lynn W.

    It’s amazing how I have more energy to care for my family when I take the time to care for myself.  Even just taking 5 minutes here and there throughout the day to sit in the backyard and think in a quiet spot has a huge impact on my sanity, and therefore my children’s well-being!  I need to exercise more, and that would also contribute big time, but for now I’m content with my 5 minute getaways :)

  • Kristen Suzanne

    So true! Just a little bit makes such a difference.

  • Krlabelle

    I need to know where in your day do you shower? How long does it take you to get ready? Do you let your hair dry naturally? Any tips on getting ready quickly with kids and still looking cute? I love “behind the scenes” posts like this!

  • Kristen Suzanne

    Great questions!

    I shower every 2-3 days, and I have Greg watch Kamea during that time. Depending on whether I am getting gussied up determines how long I need, but in any event, I simply have Greg watch her. If I’m just showering before bed, then I usually take about 20 minutes for my dry skin brushing, shower, brush teeth, wash face, and put creams on. If I’m getting ready with makeup, then add about 10 minutes to that. If I’m blow drying my hair, then add another 15 minutes. However, I usually let my hair dry naturally because it’s healthier.

    Tips for getting ready quickly?
    ~ be organized with your beauty regimen…
    ~ if you don’t have time for a full face of makeup, then settle on mascara, blush, and lipstick…
    ~ jewelry can be a great way to add sparkle to yourself and it doesn’t take but a few seconds to put it on…
    ~ wear cute clothes (like jewelry, this doesn’t take any more time than you’d normally take to get dressed but it can make a big difference in how you look – eschew anything frumpy!).

  • Tricia Swenson

    Your food stash inspires me to get more organized in my kitchen! I have a question….I’ve been trying to discover a good eco-friendly, child-safe container for smoothies for my son. I’m hoping for something I can use for on-the-go. He’s 21 months old this week. Sometimes when I just give him his green smoothie in a regular cup, he gets it all over himself. Any suggestions?

  • Kristen Suzanne