Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Family Spotlight: Featured MoM's family - Sara W.

Today we are spotlighting CMOTC MoM Sara W. and her family. Sara, who describes herself as having a dry sense of humor and not your "typical mom", says being a working (outside the home) mom helps make her a better mom. Their family tradition is a big family vacation every year, and her sanity saving tip is taking that mommy moment when needed and repeating to herself "there is only one of me." Her biggest joys are watching her twins interact... and moving past another milestone. She also has some questions for you MoMs who have boy/girl twins! Enjoy getting to know Sara and her family.

Tell us a little about yourself

I’ll start by saying I have a pretty dry sense of humor and I’m very sarcastic . . . so take this all with a grain of salt {please}.

I am the girl who never wanted children. If you had told me 5 years ago I would be writing this blog post I would have died of laughter. And maybe cried a little bit, too. I’ve never been one of those people who goes gaga over a baby or who had this deep maternal urge to have a child. Don’t get me wrong, I love my children very much (and have grown to love children of friends too!) and I realize how amazingly fortunate I am to be blessed with two healthy, smart, beautiful children. Just know this wasn’t want I thought I wanted. I am not someone who will gush about how wonderful it is to be a mom and how magical everything is – I’m all about keeping it real and honestly, this “mom” gig is the freaken hardest thing I’ve ever done.

With that said, I’m not your “typical mom”. My just-turned-three year old twins have seen an episode (or five) of “Family Guy”. And they may or may not know all the words to a few Dave Matthews Band songs. I left them overnight when they were 5 weeks old and I’ve been away from them so many nights since then that I’ve totally lost count.

To get to what most people seem to want to know, twins run in my family. My mom is a fraternal twin and there are at least 4 other sets of fraternal twins on her side of the family. So while my pregnancy was a total shock, the fact that I had twins isn’t necessarily as much of one (though if you ask my college roommates, I used to joke that because I never wanted children I’d be the one in my family to end up with twins. That Karma has one sense of humor, eh?).
I grew up in Northeast Ohio and went to high school in Tennessee. I moved back to OH to attend the University of Dayton and then started a whirlwind of relocations thanks to mine & my husband’s career (I’ve lived in Nashville, Dallas, Columbus, Huntington Beach, CA , Chicago and back to Columbus, in that order in the span of 10 years). We made the decision to move back to Ohio almost 5 years ago and it turned out to be a blessing in disguise – although we weren’t planning to expand our family, having the grandparents so close to us has been a life saver more times than I care to admit.

I’ve worked in Human Resources my whole career. At the moment I’m an HR Business Partner for a technology company. Staying home with my children was never an option I considered for a nano-second – I like to say I’m a better mom because I work. Full-time. We’ve been lucky to have two wonderful nannies work for us in the 3 years we’ve had B&K and keeping them in our home has been one of the best decisions we’ve ever made. Personally, I’m already starting to dread the day B&K start going full-time somewhere outside of our home . . . our current nanny Ashley is the glue that keeps me sane these days!

In my “free time” I like to craft (you can check out some of my crafty antics on a blog I co-author with fellow CMOTC member Jenn Murray here). My husband and I like to travel and last year we took B&K on their first trip out of the country (though technically they were still in the US – we went to St. Croix). This is where, again, I’m not your typical mom – my husband and I are very fortunate to have a great support system of family & friends who will watch B&K for us so that we can get away (and trust me – we do. Whenever and wherever we can!). I also like to entertain. Back in the “pre-B&K” days we used to throw frequent parties and honestly bought our house because it would be a good “party house” (and thankfully in hindsight it has turned into a good family home as well).

What are your children’s names and ages, as well as your spouse’s name?

My boy/girl twins are Bennett Michael & Kendyll Samantha. They turned 3 on 2/13. My husband is Tim and we’ve been married 6 ½ years.

Can you tell us a little about each of your children

My twins were born at 32w6d after nine very long, very stressful weeks of bedrest (you can read our story here) . . . oh and this was on top of a very hellish pregnancy (so to answer the other question people always like to ask me – YES WE ARE DONE! No more babies for me).

Bennett is smart, funny and quite an actor. He loves to climb, something I’m actually very proud of considering he didn’t walk until he was 22 mo old (I like to say he lived up to the “lazy white boy” persona from the NICU. After spending a year in denial that he would “catch up”, he started intense physical therapy at 16 months and eventually caught up). He is VERY attached to a blue crochet blanket a dear friend made him and he has inherited my love of all things Peanuts (like in “Charlie Brownie” Peanuts, as he would say). He is very caring and quick to laugh at himself. Plus I think he could be a Ralph Lauren model (I would seriously give my right pinkie for his perfectly straight and gorgeous smile).
Kendyll is quite a ham, though often times she can be shy (and she’ll even tell you this. “I’m shy”. Too cute). She has inherited my love of all things crafty and she deeply caring. She is the first to run and give a hug & a kiss when someone else is hurt (even throwing out an “I’m sorry”, though she may not have been the culprit). She is very strong and quick tempered {read: she can be QUITE the diva sometimes}. She also loves all things girlie, which I’m not sure where she picked up as I’m not a big girlie, girl. She has the most adorable giggle and is very opinionated when need be (“I no like dip-dip” or “I no like waterfalls in the bathtub” are two of her favorite sayings these days).

My other child is our golden retriever, Tabasco. Poor Baco (as B&K call him). He was set to be my only child and was royally spoiled. Even gracing our holiday cards each year. Thankfully, he has been wonderful with B&K. Although often times he is like having two more children in one {read: he is an attention whore}, but we love him nonetheless.

What has been the biggest challenge in having multiples

Where do I begin? When people ask me “is it getting any easier?” my reply is always “NO!!! Not easier, just different”. Whenever we seem to tackle one challenge – sleeping through the night, dropping bottles, separate rooms, “big kid” beds, potty training – it seems like it is replaced with something new to deal with . Right now it feels like a never ending cycle.
To go from thinking we didn’t really want children to getting the “2 for 1” special was also challenge. Not only did life and career plans take a major shift, but we were faced with a “challenge” that none of our friends had experienced. So from a personal level, it has meant letting go or losing touch with people who used to be “close friends” because, honestly, we just can’t relate to each other anymore. But on the flip side, the multiple mom friends I’ve made through CMOTC and other MoM groups have saved me – literally – so I’m thankful for that.

But probably the biggest challenge I’ve faced has been a more personal/unique one. Shortly before my twins were born my husband took a new job that required a lot of travel. Initially it was travel throughout the US and he would maybe be gone 3 – 5 days a week (home on the weekends). But for the past year he has been working more international assignments where he is away 2 – 3 weeks straight and only home for 1 – 2 weeks at a time. Not only has this been a challenge for me (as I work full-time and am barely surviving the toddler/preschool years), but it has also been very hard for B&K to understand why he is away so much. They love to say “Daddy is on an airplane up in the sky” when he is away – so much so, that at one point an acquaintance asked me if Tim was a pilot (which he is not – ha!). Explaining to a 3 yr old that daddy is in Turkey is a fun thing (they don’t get how he can be in something we eat for Thanksgiving. Ha!). But I like to think whatever doesn’t kill me makes me stronger, right?

What has been your biggest joy in having multiples
I try to look at things from a positive perspective – unlike my friends who are now popping out their second child (and thus, having to start all over again from a beginning), once we are done with something we are D-O-N-E with it (because trust me – I am NEVER doing this again!! We are thankful for our blessings of two healthy, beautiful children and I have no desire to start over again!). Once we were done with bottles, they were all donated. Once we were done with diapers, there was no looking back. Cribs were dismantled and sold on Craigslist. My friends who are just now getting around to having baby number one are out of luck because all of my “baby” stuff is long gone.

Watching Bennett & Kendyll interact – whether it be tickling each other or bossing each other around – brings joy. And having them give each other a huge hug & kiss before bed is just plain adorable. And when one gets something – like a treat cupcake for example – they always make sure to get another for the other. Those are just a few things that brings a smile to my face.

Do you have any family traditions?

Tim & I like to go out to celebrate another year of survival on B&K’s birthday (adults only). As a family, we often pile onto the couch to watch a little TV after dinner / before bedtime. We’ve taken a big family vacation every year since B&K have been born – first to the Outer Banks, then Myrtle Beach and last year we flew to St. Croix – so we’re already in the planning stages for our trip this year.

Do you have any “sanity saving tips” that work for you in managing those particularly hectic days or moments of parenting and day-to-day life with kids?

Sometimes I just need to walk away. And that is okay. There were times when they were babies and I was home alone with them and they would both be screaming at the top of their lungs because it was bottle time. There wasn’t anything I could do – there is only one of me and I just kept repeating to myself they won’t be scarred for life if they scream for 3 minutes while I make two bottles. And they don’t seem scarred yet. Same for now – when the “toddler negotiations” fail and I have two screaming children tugging at me, I sometimes just have to walk away while muttering under my breath “there is only one of me”.

Do you have a family or personal blog or website that you would like to share with the group?

Yes: http://mommyoftwinsinwaiting.blogspot.com (it is in the CMOTC blog roll). I started it when I was on bedrest and never expected it to still be alive over 3 years later. But it has become a “baby book” of sorts for B&K (esp. since I have yet to write a single word in their actual baby books!).

If you could ask a question to our other CMOTC MoMs about raising multiples (at any age or stage), what would it be?

I feel like in a lot of ways we’ve recently tackled some of the major “milestones” I had been dreading since day one (potty-training & big kid beds are two that come to mind). And so now my focus is more on discipline and what to do when they go to school full time (same room or different classes?). And while I’ve been so blessed with a few very close friends who also have multiples the same age as B&K, my situation is a bit different in that they have same sex multiples where as I have boy/girl. When do I start having separate birthday parties? And should I freak out that my son likes to wear my daughter’s Snow White dress and my daughter likes to fix things with her brother’s tools?

If you have advice for Carrie's question, or any comments in general, please leave them below.
If you are interested in having your family featured, please email us!


  1. Great job, Sara. I "stalk" your blog on the blog roll everytime I see it's been updated, and your kids are so stinkin cute! I love the "there's only one of me". Even though the boys are 8, I find myself saying, "How many mommies are there?" and they answer "one". And then I say, "how many kids are there?" and they say, "three". I say, "what does that mean?" and they say, "we have to be patient."

    Love it!

  2. Good Family and nice your job !! cute baby and beautiful your all pics . really nice smile on your face and interesting info share in the post.


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