We're back with our Motherhood Inspiration series and this week we're interviewing Claire Craig!
Claire is a California born, Utah-based mama. She spent her childhood growing up in the mountains of Montana and the summers surfing in Hawaii. She loves staying active through sports, hiking, and HIIT workouts! She currently works full-time as a Learning and Development consultant for a tech company and loves adding to her blog on the side. She has a special needs son named Julius (aka Juice) who is pure sunshine! You can check out her Instagram @heyclairecraig and her blog to see a peek into her life, latest DIY projects, and tips on baby development.
- Who are you a mom to? "Julius."
- Tell us about your life outside of motherhood. "I love working out (HIIT workouts, weightlifting, running) and getting in the sunshine. When I'm in Utah or Montana that means hiking, boating, and swimming in the river. When I'm in Hawaii, it's surfing and hanging at the beach. I love to read and listen to audible books. My favorite travel destination is either London or Tahiti. I love good food but I'm not a great cook. I'm a total bread girl: baguettes are the way to my heart. I love my job in learning and development! I get to help leaders develop skills to grow in their careers and help their team members become their best selves."
- How has becoming a mother changed your life? "Becoming a mother has totally shifted everything for me. Travel for instance is a whole different ball game. Before I was able to travel super light with just a carry-on. Now it's like a mini circus with car seat, stroller, pack n play, etc haha. But I wouldn't have it any other way. I feel really strongly about bringing your child with you on trips (if possible). From a work perspective, it's a total balancing act. Julius has therapy and doctor's appointments every week so I have to manage his therapy practice with getting my work done. A lot of times that means getting up before the sun rises, so I can get my workout in and get some work done before he gets up. With his medical needs, having a job that provided medical insurance was super important so while I love sharing my life and DIY's on my blog, that became my fun side project instead of my full-time gig."
- If you started your business after you became a mother, how did it influence the start of your business? Or if you started your blog before you became a mom, how did it change the direction of your content. "When I first started on Instagram, I wasn't really sure what my "message" was or who my audience would be. I felt like I had a lot of different interests but nothing really follow-worthy. Then when I got pregnant and Julius went through all of his testing and development challenges, I realized there was a way to share our story in a thoughtful way. I have a lot of mothers who also have or work with special needs children and it's incredible the amount of camaraderie and community you can create digitally. My goal is to inspire parents to seek out the help they need to support themselves and their children in the best way possible."
- How do you balance the constant chaos of motherhood and or work? In addition, how do you prioritize self-care? "For me, it's about taking time to reset when things get really difficult. I have a lot of friends who have lost children or who are battling with infertility so on the days when it feels like I want to pull my hair out or I'm overwhelmed and tired, I remember those friends of mine and focus on the fact that even though days are hard, there are many people who pray their whole lives to have a child and I owe it to them and myself to be as grateful as I can. Self-care for me is about finding time for movement every day. Usually, that's in the early morning and then I treat myself to some reality TV before I go to bed :)"
- Tell me about your "life's Messy Moment" story. "I run new hire orientation for my company and during the Monday morning session, I have about an hour intro where I need to be super focused so I can nail my presentation. The other week Julius (who rarely cries) decided he was going to have a full-on meltdown right in the middle of my presentation. I had to keep putting myself on mute to try and calm him down and the poor new hires just had to watch a virtual toddler meltdown. Then as soon as he stopped crying and I finished my presentation, I looked down and he had somehow taken off his diaper from inside his onesie and pee and poop were everywhere. Running orientation and introducing speakers while trying to clean, bathe, and sanitize Julius was probably the trickiest balancing act I've ever done, haha."
- How did you hear about the Ayla Bag? "I heard about it through social media! The owners know my sisters-in-law so we connected through that!"
- What are you most excited for about the bag? "I love a functional bag that will make my life easier! I like things organized, especially when traveling, and this bag seems like a gamechanger."
- Tell us one place where you would use the Ayla Vac! "Oh my gosh, a wizard genius must have come up with this idea. Or a brilliant mom. I would use the vac in my car or while traveling!"