Welcome to Meet the Working Mum Interview. Today we meet Tracey Smith. Tracey works as a Marketing Assistant and also blogs over at Mums Make Up Bag.
If you have missed any of the previous interviews, or if you are new to this series, check out all the other Meet the Working Mum’s.
An intro and a little bit about you, your family and where you live.
I am a 35 year old mum of 5, 15 year old girl, 6 year old twin boys and a 2 year old boy. I live in Mayo with my husband who is a head chef. I blog part time over on www.mumsmakeupbag.com about the kids, beauty, life and loss.
What do you do for a job? Is it what you have always wanted to do?
I am a Marketing Assistant for a small chain of pharmacies. I completed a masters in Marketing when my youngest was 4 months old and since then I have developed a passion for Marketing. So in terms of is this the job I want to do for the rest of my career the answer would be yes, I would like to stay in the Marketing sphere and I would like to experience a variety of sectors. My responsibility would lie in online, website design, content creation, social media marketing and advertising.
What was your motivation to return to work?
My motivation to return to work was ambition. I had my first daughter when I was 19 and I had to drop out of college. I was always determined to go back and I graduated with an honour business degree 8 years later. I had the twins and my youngest after that and I soon realised I would need to do something extra to compete with younger applicants. So I went back and done my masters in Marketing and once I graduated I knew it was time for me to put my skills to work.
How many hours do you work a week?
I work 37.5 hours per week.
Do you have to travel far from where you live to where you work?
I am lucky in so far as my job is a 10-minute drive from my house.
What do you do for childcare? Does this work for you?
My sister was made redundant shortly before I took this job and she minds the toddler and the twins when they come in from school. My husband usually has 1-2 days off mid-week so that means she only minds them 3-4 days per week. Yes, it works for us thankfully.
What does your morning routine look like? What do you do to get you all out of the house on time?
I wake at 7.30 get the kids up and dressed and while they are having breakfast I dress the toddler. I get his stuff ready for the day and get the boys prepared for school. My 15-year-old is picked up by another mum and I drop the boys off to my sister for their bus. On Tuesdays and Thursdays I go to the gym for 7am and on those mornings my daughter helps dress the toddler while I have a quick shower. My husband leaves for work at 5.30am every morning. I must have lunches ready the night before.
What do you like about being a working mum?
I love my independence. I love being able to use my creativity. I enjoy been around adults as it was just me and the kids for so long. I personally feel like I am a better mum being out of the house more. I have more patience, empathy and strength.
What don’t you like about being a working mum?
I have begun to dislike the full-time hours lately. I don’t like the way I have no time to do normal things. Around the house things, everyday things like going to my mother’s for tea. Meeting a friend for coffee. Doing banking and shopping mid-week.
What would you change? Hours you work, commute you have to make etc.
I would change my hours if I could.
What three tips would you pass onto a mum about to start back at work?
Tips I have before you head back to work. Be prepared to feel guilty, even though you have nothing to feel guilty for, be prepared! Start gathering a work wardrobe asap! I lived in jeans for 7 years I had no clothes for the office, none! A capsule wardrobe, a good blazer, a shift dress, trousers and a couple of tops! Get your new routine down early, something I have yet to accomplish is prepping dinners at the weekend, believe me you will thank yourself for doing this! If you are going into an office job you will be sitting a lot more than you ever did, keep your desk full of healthy snacks as in the first few days you might be too busy/ nervous to eat proper meals.
For fun show us a picture of your work handbag.
So my handbag… It’s from river island. It has 2 repeal the 8th badges on the front… It had 1 toy car, 1 lighter (I don’t smoke), lipsticks, notebook, diary, shopping lists, back to school lists a map of the zoo!
Thank you so much for taking part in the Meet the Mum interview series XXX. I
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