Em At Home on Managing It All
Emily from Em At Home is literally doing it all: currently 30 weeks pregnant while a mama to her 3-year-old daughter, a wife, a homemaker, and a content creator and entrepreneur. Like so many of us, she gets up early to work before her daughter wakes, sneaks in work time during naps, and strives for the balance we are all seeking!
Emily shared with us a glimpse into her day as a work from home mom and told us about her journey to motherhood with her first -- and her hopes for her current pregnancy and new bundle of joy.
Tell us a bit about yourself, and the current season you are in as mother, wife, digital creator, and entrepreneur. What was your path to this point?
Emily: Hi, I'm Emily! I am a Wife to my college sweetheart, Mama to an amazing little 3 year old girl, and currently have another little girl cooking (30 weeks pregnant)! I stay at home with our daughter, but I guess more accurately would be considered a work from home Mom at this point! I have always been someone who loves to create and share content online with hopes of making an income through a creative outlet, and I feel very lucky that I am able to stay at home with my girl while helping out financially! I've shared through video creation in many different ways over the years...from sharing my original music and covers on YouTube (I am a singer-songwriter) to vlogging and homemaking videos on Youtube to where I am today...using Instagram to share and connect with other Mamas through honesty and humor! I also help teach Mamas how to streamline their makeup routine into one makeup palette so they can do their makeup in 5 minutes or less!
The term “matrescence” refers to the motherhood journey and the process of becoming a mother. Take us back several years to your pregnancy journey. What did you learn about yourself during pregnancy? How did pregnancy differ in reality from your expectations?
Emily: I had a relatively easy pregnancy with my first! I think I expected it to be hard and scary, but I really enjoyed being pregnant, and since it was the first time around I was pretty obsessed with my bump, and loved being pregnant. This time around I'm feeling a little less cute, a little more big and uncomfortable faster, ha! With my first pregnancy, I was so excited to start our family and become a Mom, but I really had no idea how transformative it would be for me. I think when I was pregnant, I looked at becoming a Mom as a huge life change, and one that would require so much sacrifice. And of course it is that. What your life looks like completely changes. But what I didn't realize is that it wouldn't feel like sacrifice or me "missing out" on my old life when I became a parent. I became a Mom and felt like I had a new purpose in life that brought me more joy than anything I had ever done. I actually felt like I had been missing out on something for all this time. How had I ever lived life without this little human I have this indescribable love for? It took the focus off of ME (which is actually a relief, after 28 years of only worrying about myself). I thought I knew what I was getting into when I became pregnant, but I had no idea. In the best possible way!
I became a Mom and felt like I had a new purpose in life that brought me more joy than anything I had ever done. I actually felt like I had been missing out on something for all this time. How had I ever lived life without this little human I have this indescribable love for?
Tell us about the fourth trimester and how you acclimated to being a mama. How did you change? How did your family dynamics change? What would you have done differnetly?
Emily: Oh man, I look back on this as such a precious, sacred time. Becoming a Mom was one the most incredible and transformative things that ever happened to me. You think you understand how much you are going to love your baby, but the truth is you have no idea what even a fraction of the love will feel like until you are holding your baby in your arms (for me anyway), and it was the most overwhelming, incredible thing I've ever experienced to date. When I was very newly postpartum, a lot of my "baby blues tears" were triggered by how overwhelmed I was by the love I had for my daughter, or how beautiful of an experience giving birth was. I would take one look at her and sob about how much I loved her! Or look down at my healing body and start crying about how amazing of a job it did growing and birthing a human. In the moment I felt like I was handling my first postpartum journey beautifully, without postpartum anxiety or depression, but looking back, I definitely had some postpartum anxiety! Although I look back on that as a sacred, precious time, I realize it was also one of the hardest times and adjustment periods of my life! We were living in a place where we didn't have any family or help around in the beginning, and I remember my husband going back to work after one week and me feeling completely incapable of taking care of the baby or myself. Like I wasn't cut out for it. The sleep deprivation, paired with all the weird newborn quirks (and me already being kind of an anxious person when it comes to anything medical) had me calling him crying and begging him to come back home from work in those early weeks. It was a sweet time where I basically did nothing for a month (or more) but kiss, snuggle, and nurse my baby, but it was also so challenging and pushed me to limits I didn't know I had! Looking back, I would have timed things out better with family visiting and my husband taking off work so I wouldn't have been alone on day 8 of being postpartum, sleep deprived, healing, and trying to figure out how to breastfeed. This time I feel so much more empowered to be honest with friends and family about what I need, what I don't need, and feel better prepared to have our home set up with the things we ACTUALLY need ha! Less cute outfits and baby shoes, more onesies with foldover mittens, baby washcloths, freezer meals and easy snacks prepared!
Did you set out to be a content creator/Instagrammer? How did your page start to take off?
Emily: When I became an artist with Seint (the makeup that I sell) I wanted to start posting on Instagram regularly to help grow my business, but the Mom Humor niche I fell into was kind of an accident! That was never my original plan. I created a couple reels about humorous things about being a toddler Mom, and they were always the posts that did so well on my page! They connected me to so many other Mamas who could have sworn I was talking about them! They were going through exactly what I was going through. So I kind of ran with it because it was something that was easy for me to talk about...it's just my life! I never really run out of ideas in that category! It has always been my goal to keep my Instagram a very light and positive place. The world can feel so heavy sometimes, and Motherhood can be hard sometimes, but there is also so much joy, beauty, and humor in raising babies and toddlers, and I think Mamas love to connect in that way and laugh together, especially when you can connect on weirdly specific things that you swore only happened to you! My page really started taking off when I started consistently sharing humorous reels about being a toddler Mom. And that has in turn, really helped my makeup business to grow, because it has connected me with so many Mamas who want a quick and easy makeup routine that brings out how beautiful they already are!
How do you juggle it all? How do you manage creating content, mothering, being present for your friends/family, and everything else that life throws at us?
Emily: How do I juggle it all? I don't always...ha! I can't answer this question without saying I have an amazing husband who has always been my biggest support and source of encouragement to take on whatever creative endeavor I've been contemplating. He's the one who will say, "Do it already Em! You should have started yesterday!" He believes in me more than I believe in myself sometimes, and is always asking how he can help take things off my plate so I can be successful (or just doing without being asked). I'm super lucky. But that being said, he does work full time, and the number 1 most important hat I wear is the one I've always dreamed of; being a Mama, Wife and Homemaker. It is so important to me to be as present with my daughter as possible, take her for regular outings, do fun activities...all the stay at home Mom things I always dreamed of doing with her. It's also important to me to keep a clean home, try and get healthy meals on the table and continue to work and grow my business. That being said, I do not always succeed in all those categories! My husband and I are a team. But I am lucky to be able to fit my business into very small pockets of my day. I will usually wake up earlier than my daughter in the morning to do a little bit of Seint work. When my daughter wakes up, she has her morning pre-breakfast snack of a banana and PBS episode, and I continue to work for a little while. Then from morning until nap time, I keep my focus on her and try to put my phone and work away. I fit little household tasks like cleaning up dishes and laundry in when I can during this time, but I really try to be as present with her as possible. Naptime is when I will usually create/edit and upload reels (it's nice they take so little time to make!) post to my instagram stories, and do any Seint work. I rarely clean during naptime! When she wakes up, I will usually do a quick cleaning task or tie up any loose ends in the house while she plays and sometimes start dinner, but often times my husband cooks dinner! Usually I will have a little work to do after getting my daughter down for bed. I think I'm able to "juggle it all" because I can really fit my business into small pockets of the day. We'll see how much this routine changes when baby comes, because I fully expect it to be turned upside-down!
It has always been my goal to keep my Instagram a very light and positive place. The world can feel so heavy sometimes, and Motherhood can be hard sometimes, but there is also so much joy, beauty, and humor in raising babies and toddlers, and I think Mamas love to connect in that way and laugh together, especially when you can connect on weirdly specific things that you swore only happened to you!
We of course have to talk skincare. Tell us about your daily skincare routine as a busy mama. What products do you use regularly? How do you evaluate and make skincare purchases? What is your all-time favorite skincare splurge?
Emily: My busy Mama skincare routine! In the mornings I slap on some moisturizer, sunscreen and lip balm! Lately I've been using the Weleda Skinfood Light to moisturize, and the Tula Protect & Glow is my all time favorite face sunscreen! At nighttime, I have been using the Matrescence Clear & Bright Ritual and my only regret is not starting sooner! It has been so transformative to my skin...truly! I'm a clean beauty (and clean everything!) junkie! I'm the girl who is always scanning products into the EWG app in the Target aisle. It is so hard to find clean, safe products that actually work amazingly, and when I tried the Clear & Bright Ritual I was completely shocked at how quickly I noticed such a difference in my skin! My skin looks more radiant, more even, and I notice less melasma and hyperpigmentation. And the fact that it is pregnancy and breastfeeding safe is HUGE for me. I nursed my daughter until she was 2.5 and became pregnant less than a month after weaning her, so I've been pregnant or breastfeeding for almost 4 years straight. Making sure the products I'm using on my body are safe for my babies is always on my mind, because my body literally grows, feeds and snuggles and kisses them constantly! It is so important to me! Okay, I went off on a tangent there, but I'm very obsessed with my new nighttime skincare routine. After using the Clear & Bright Ritual I will apply a little Vitamin E Oil, Weleda Skinfood (regular) and Aquaphor to my lips :).
What is one thing you wish you would have known about motherhood BEFORE becoming a mother?
Emily: I wish I would have known about the Safe Sleep Seven for breastfeeding, bedsharing Mamas! Cosleeping is something I never in a million years expected to do, but we ended up doing out of necessity, and I had so much guilt around it when it first started happening. I was given no information from doctors or the hospital on it beforehand (and I completely understand why), so I just thought I was a terrible Mom for accidently falling asleep next to my baby. If I would have been educated about it in the beginning, I would have known how to properly prepare our bed, I would have realized that I was not the only Mom in the world doing it, and I think I would have gotten a little more sleep! I'm not endorsing it or saying it is for everyone, because it definitely isn't, but it worked for us, and I wish I would have had the knowledge and support group that I have now after opening up about it. (Again, thank you Instagram reels!).
And now some fun stuff! Tell us:
Coffee or tea?
Coffee all the way! My favorite is Stok Unsweet Cold Brew with a little maple syrup and half & half!
Who is your inspiration and why?
My Mama - she was the most incredible Mom a girl could ever hope for and I strive to be like her in every single way, every day
You have one completely uninterrupted afternoon – no partner, no child, no work. What do you do?
Bum around Target in peace with a coffee!
Make it Insta official! Follow Emily on Instagram!
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