Change is afoot in the Sieminski household!

You may have noticed a new face in our family photos from Peter’s birthday party. That is our au pair Isabela.

We welcomed Isabela into our home a few weeks ago. She will be living with us and helping us care for the kids over the next year. Isabela is a 2nd year au pair from Sao Paolo, Brazil. She was in country last year in Vermont just outside of Dartmouth College. We’re so happy she matched with us. She an amazing addition to our family. We love her so much and it’s only been 2 weeks!

Nora just started pre school at Big City Montessori School (BCMS) and she will be there for the next 3 years.

Peter will head off to Little Scouts (the fabulous in-home day care that Nora just graduated from) next September. After a year or two there, he will join his big sis at BCMS.

Over the next couple of weeks/months, I will prep myself mentally and emotionally to return to work. In a perfect world, I’ll ease back in with a part-time job – but there aren’t that many part-time HR jobs out there, so we’ll see. I’m going to take a SHRM review course to brush up on my HR skills (and possibly re-certify with them as a SHRM-SCP) and then start looking for and interviewing for a job. I’m still credentialed as a PHR through HRCI but I’m in suspended status with them until I get my remaining 30 units of continuing education in. I have until July 2018 to get those done.

Apologies for all the HR talk and slang above! The point is, being a stay-at-home mom was super rewarding, but extremely hard work. Lately, I’ve felt suffocated by it all. Carrying the mental load of our home, plus caring for Peter full-time proved to be more than I could handle. I felt like I was falling down on the job for him. My energy is low after the past 5 years I’ve had and I fear he is suffering as a result. So we made the hard decision to bring someone else in to help us out. Someone who is young, with energy to take Peter out on adventures and play dates.

Anyway, this post is about Isabela – my thoughts on throwing in the towel on being a stay-at-home mom, as well as, my fear and simultaneous excitement about returning to work are fodder for another post….

Be sure to press play on the video below – you don’t want to miss this one!



I didn’t fake the tears, but I did fake the workout

Last week I needed to play hooky from being a mommy.

I hit a wall on Wednesday morning. I walked into our bedroom while Paul was still sleeping, holding Nora and sobbing.  I explained to Paul that I’d been up for a few hours already and Nora and I were just having an “off” day. She wouldn’t take the bottle from me and I was becoming increasingly frustrated and crestfallen all at the same time. I was feeling like a bad mommy.

Ever the amazing husband, Paul agreed to come home early from work so that I could go to the gym and get some “me” time while blowing off steam.

True to his word, he came home early. I immediately left the house, gym bag in hand. I drove to the gym. Parked in the gym’s garage (which is a city lot that is subsidized by my gym). But instead of taking the elevator up to the club, I got off at the street level and walked next door to the Neiman Marcus Last Call.

What? It’s not my fault there’s a shopping mall next door to my gym! I spent about an hour and a half in there trying a ton of stuff on.  Then, guilt set in and I decided I needed to leave. Paul was at home juggling both baby and work. I couldn’t leave him for too long.

Crud! I needed to go into the gym to get my parking validated. Otherwise, I’d have to pay full price at the lot — and there’s no way in hell I was doing that. So up to the gym I went.

Once there, I looked at the heavy gym bag I’d been carrying around and thought to myself “Well, why not make lugging this thing around worth your while Andrea?” I bet you’re thinking, “oh, good, she ended up getting a workout in.” Nope, you’re wrong.

I went into the locker room and took a long, uninterrupted shower. A shower not hurried by fear that Nora will wake from her nap at any moment. I even shaved my legs. Then I did my hair and put on make-up. It was wonderful!

At this point, I’d already gone so far off the deep end I figured what’s a little more? So I got a chocolate peanut butter smoothie on my way out. LOL

Worst part about all of this is I let Paul assume I’d worked out when I got home. I was newly showered and in street clothes after all. I was totally selling the story.

Don’t worry, I confessed my sins to him within five minutes when I had to explain the Neiman’s bag sticking out of my gym bag….