insights

The Working Mom: A Perspective from Moms at Spec

The meaning of being a mother is virtually endless. It seems no matter how young or how old you are, a mother is your greatest protector, disciplinarian, and friend. Being a mother is perhaps the hardest, most rewarding job a woman will ever experience, and raising a family while maintaining a career at the same time is no small task.

 

At Spec, we are surrounded by proud mothers. These women are respected professionals who excel in their jobs and go above and beyond each day, all while raising (or already raised) children at home. We spoke with some of these women about motherhood, how they balance working and raising a family, their advice to new moms, and some of the women who inspire them.

 

 

 

How do you maintain a healthy work-life balance?

 

Elly Zlatarova, Database Administrator: The best way is to stay organized and to have a plan of what and when to do and prioritize tasks. Having family and friends also helps a lot.  As children grow, responsibilities increase, so it is important to have a schedule and agenda for the day.  Allow time for yourself, even if it is for a few minutes of the day. Get involved in something that you like to do, whether it is reading or taking a walk around the neighborhood or playing with the children.

 

Amy Kerns, Executive Administrator: Letting go of perfectionism, setting boundaries, and trying to be as efficient with my time as possible.

 

Amy with her son, 1994

"I am still practicing every day. I try to remember that a work-life balance doesn't necessarily mean a consistent 50/50 balance. Some weeks we have an important deadline at work and I work overtime; other weeks I spend a little more time at home with my kids, and that is okay. Ultimately, since I have become a mom, I have become much better at time management."
Meredith Perry,, Vice President, Business Operations

Spec Engineering

Jada Jamison, Application Engineer: Maintaining a work-life balance can be difficult at times. The best advice is to have a consistent schedule of working hours and to stick with them. When I am working, I am focused on completing my tasks for the day to ensure that when it is time to go home that I am focused on being a mom and spending quality time with my daughters.

 

Faye VonOsinski, Electrical Project Manager: I get up early to exercise and do my schoolwork and spend my evenings with my sons Matteo (12) & Elias (10).

 

 

 

If you could give a new, working mom advice on how to balance work and home life, what would you tell her?

 

Jada: Make time for yourself and your personal goals. During the week I make sure that I wake up at 4:30 pm to go to the gym because working out is something I enjoy doing for me. Also, having a good home schedule is a key to avoid feeling overloaded; my kids are in bed by 9:00 pm every weeknight, which allows me to have a little ‘me’ time. Most importantly, I would say to give yourself grace! Being a mom is the hardest job I have, but the most rewarding by far.

 

Amy: Take care of yourself and don’t feel guilty for wanting a career.

 

"Be organized and prioritize. Do not postpone tasks as they will keep piling up. Cook larger portions and save the rest for the coming days. If your kids are older, get them involved in housework. Additionally, if you need help with something, ask for help - whether it is your spouse, family, or friends. "
Elly Zlatarova, Database Administrator

Spec Engineering

Meredith: Manage your expectations –  don’t shoot for perfection and understand you are only human. Remember that kids grow up fast and this is only temporary. Some days you will show up to work with spit up on your dress and other days you will forget to show up to Parent Teacher conferences – don’t be too hard on yourself and enjoy this time. Never feel guilty if you are doing the best you can for your family and the company.

 

 

 

Do you have one favorite memory of parenthood that you’d like to share?

 

Meredith: Watching my kids become friends and play together is one of the greatest joys. Also, my husband and I just welcomed our third child Ellie into our family last December and watching Amelia and Nate with their new baby sister is so great.

 

Elly: There are a lot and new memories form with each day/month/year. Each of them is special for one or another reason, first words, first steps, and soon will be the first day of school. Most recent memories are from a family trip in Disney.  We visited one of the parks for a day and even though it was very short, the kids had a great time – watching the floats, taking pictures with various characters, or being on the rides. And my daughter keeps asking to go there again pretty much every other week.

 

Faye: Reading books together every night since my oldest was born, and we still do (We’re now reading Swiss Family Robinson) : – )

 

Jada: My cousins and I grew up like siblings, and even in our grown years we are all still so close to one another. Now that we all have our own families, we try to have our children grow up just as close as we did. I appreciate family more than anything, so our huge family trips that we try to take every other year are very special to me!

 

Jada with her daughters 

 

 

 

Do you have any favorite Mother’s Day traditions in your family?

 

Faye: Visit to the Little Red Schoolhouse & BBQ!

 

Meredith: My husband always helps my kids make me breakfast and then my kids eat most of it off my plate. 😉 Then we have brunch with my grandma and our big family.

 

Jada: While Mother’s Day is usually centered around celebrating the ‘mothers,’ I like to celebrate my kids. Being a mother and a great one is so important to me, so I use this day to reflect on how grateful I am for my daughters. That usually includes a great meal and an activity that we can all enjoy!

 

"Children grow up quicker than the blink of an eye, so make sure to start the day with positivity and encouragement, leave work in the office, and when you are home, spend fun quality time together!"
Faye VonOsinski, Electrical Project Manager

Spec Engineering

What women in your life have inspired you?

 

Jada: My mother and late grandmother have been the two most inspirational women in my life. To see and understand the struggles that they went through as mothers, while keeping a smile on their face, gives me hope that I can overcome anything. Seeing the love that they have shared within our entire family pushes me to want my best self, whether in the work or home environment.

 

Amy: My mom, my grandmother, my aunts, and my sister.

 

Meredith: There are so many strong mothers in my life that inspire me in many ways. There are a lot of traits that I admire in the mothers I know, and I try to emulate those traits – my mother’s faith and altruism, my sister’s ability to look at the big picture and put things in perspective, my grandma’s strength and grace – just to name a few!

 

Faye: Jane Goodall, Princess Diana, and of course, my Mom!

 

Faye with her 2 sons

From everyone at Spec to all the moms out there, Happy Mother’s Day!

 

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Spec Engineering is a Gray company.

Spec is a process engineering company, focused on best-in-class solutions for customers in the food, grain, minerals, chemicals, and pharma industries. In 2019, Spec became part of the Gray family of brands. As a Gray company, we continue to offer comprehensive expertise, catered to your scope, schedule, and budget.