One of the best “pro tips” I have for surviving working parenthood is to plan for things to go wrong. If Plan A falls through, what are you going to do? Having a good Plan B is often the difference between life feeling workable and chaos.
Anyway, Sarah and I recorded today’s podcast back in April, partly because we had a lot of guest episodes coming up, and we wanted to have a back-up plan in case one of those episodes fell through. By recording an “evergreen” episode that could sub in, we’d always have a back-up plan.
Then, miraculously, all went well! So it is finally airing now. Anyway, we proudly bring you the Superficial Things episode, which covers all manner of frivolity. Among the topics:
Packing. We recorded this shortly after I got back from the London spring break trip with the kids. I’m a pretty low-maintenance person, and this showed up in our packing: 3 children and I traveled with two carry-ons and our personal items (small backpacks for the kids and a purse for me). It works. I hate checking bags.
What Not To Wear. This episode covers a lot of topics related to physical appearances. There is always a tension with this, in that we find it most unfortunate that people are judged on what they look like. That said, we can work for a better world while still living in the current one. We can work with whatever nature gave us, knowing that there can be some real professional pay-offs in aiming for the top of the range. This brought us back to the show What Not To Wear. They featured a good diversity of shapes and sizes and people always looked fabulous at the end of their make-overs. A good hair cut and clothes that work with your body can do a lot.
Sarah’s party trick. In her work as a pediatric endocrinologist, Sarah deals with kid growth issues. As part of this, she often measures the parents, which means she has gotten very good at assessing people’s heights by looking at them. With a high degree of precision. As in, she maintains that my husband is 6′ 2.5″, not 6’3″. (In his defense, he will often say 6’2″-6’3″ when asked).
Comfortable clothing. Does anyone else struggle with being grown-up about uncomfortable clothes and shoes? I have a really hard time with making myself wear them.
Make-up. I said I would hire a make-up artist to help me learn what to buy. I have not done this yet. Sarah is looking for ways to make lipstick not look clownish on her. There is a fine line between looking like you’re wearing way too much on the lip and looking like you’re wearing nothing (which somewhat defeats the purpose).
Skin. I did go to the dermatologist, but did not try Botox yet. I was a little bit wigged out by the idea of my forehead muscles getting droopy (an occasional bad effect – then you’re happy it wears off after a few months). I may try it some time when I don’t have anything big coming up. I wound up getting a Retin-A prescription, but I can’t say it’s had a huge effect yet. The dermatologist told me 8-12 weeks and I started in April.
Nails. Just no. Neither of us can keep a manicure, though Sarah does do pedicures. I think this is a hazard of living in Miami Beach. People actually see your feet in a way they just don’t in suburban PA.
The sanctity of the nap. Our Q&A is from a listener who heard our travel episode with Henley Vazquez and asked about traveling with an infant who still naps multiple times per day. Neither of us is a big believer in naps at absolutely set times in the crib — though partly that’s because our kids are temperamentally flexible. If your kid will *only* sleep in a crib, then you’d probably become fundamentalist about it! Baby morning naps are pretty inconvenient from a whole-family perspective, so that might be the one best taken in the stroller. Then everyone can go back to the hotel for some downtime in the afternoon. That might lower the chances of dinner time meltdowns. Maybe. When traveling with little kids it’s all a crapshoot anyway.