Mother’s Day invites us to share our deepest love and appreciation with the woman who made our lives possible. It allows us to also celebrate the women in all of our lives who have and continue to have a tremendous impact on the world we live in. To celebrate this year, we reached out to some of our most admired mothers in our industry to share how life has changed this year (due to COVID-19), great tips on go-to meals, and perhaps the silver lining in all of this.

Shannon Soller, C0-Founder of Beauty Beyond

How has life changed for you since being a mother during this unpredictable time?

I don’t want to sound redundant as I’m sure all of the fellow moms out there don’t need to hear me repeating what they know or how they already feel about the stress of juggling work, homeschool, lunch lady, housekeeper, wife, dog walker, Sports coach…but I would say the biggest positive change has been the productivity of getting the projects done around the house that I’ve been putting off for years…cleaning out the shed, organizing the garage, finally putting an office together for my husband, painting my daughters room. Also sitting down as a family every night to dinner has been such a treat. It makes you realize how fast a pace we all have been running at for so long between hockey, swim practice, homework, tournaments, tutors, work, travel…(fill in the blanks we all have endless commitments)…these are the things I’ve been trying to focus on. The things I can control. Connecting with those I love virtually with just an “I’m thinking about you” text. Or a house party happy hour. Movie or game night with the family. Knowing that this will pass. We will get thru it. It will not last forever.

Your go-to quick meal? 

My quick go-to meal for the fam is avocado toast. I always splurge on good bread. Even now (if I can find)… my kids are good eaters and love olive bread. I’ll mash Avo, lemon…and everything but the bagel seasoning from Trader Joe’s or lemon pepper and a good salt like truffle or rosemary…something with a little flavor. You can add a fried egg in the am or chop tomatoes and cucumbers, layer with hummus or tuna salad and serve for dinner…I’ll admit my kids are a bit spoiled with good food and are great eaters but I have always served them real food not the default kids types of meals and now at 9 and 11 we have a blast cooking together and eating together! *another corona activity idea😂

Nikki Bostwick, Founder of The Fullest

How has life changed for you since being a mother during this unpredictable time? 

Life has been a total rollercoaster since the shutdown. Most days are filled with so much gratitude for this time with my husband and our little boy.

Other days, I get caught up in the day to day of work (because regardless of a pause, work keeps going!) and some days my stressed-out work mode mood doesn’t quite turn off when I need it to! all in all, on the business side, I’m grateful to have the opportunity to go back to the essence of what we do and why we do it. It’s a time to strategize and pivot in ways you didn’t think possible before. But I must say, I’ve learned a lot about myself the last couple months going way beyond what I thought my limits would be. Maybe it’s the Gemini in me adapting to this new way of being and operating, or maybe it’s just what’s required when you’re faced with so many unknowns.

Any advice you would offer to fellow mamas?

Moms working from home- not only is it a handful to try and maintain a work-life balance, now you might be home with a pile of dishes, constant laundry, cleaning, entertaining, and in between have your child screaming in the back of your work calls (or in my case podcast!). but I’m here to give you perspective because It’s not worth fussing about- rather, it’s beautiful to know that so many people are cooped up with screaming babies, barking dogs, loud family members, and there’s not much anyone can do about it but accept it all and be amazed at how much one person can juggle.

Your go-to quick meal?

Our family dinners consist of roasted veggies, salad, and a protein (my husband is on protein duty). I love making roasted vegetables because it’s so simple- top them with olive oil (I love Brightland), sea salt and lemon, leave them in to cook for a while, about 40-45 minutes, and you have a full meal! I’m personally good with salad and veggies, but the protein makes it a simple, farm to table meal.

Jessica Richards, Founder of Shen Beauty

How has life changed for you since being a mother during this unpredictable time?
Life has changed immensely…NO SCHOOL!!!! DISASTER! Homeschooling is not easy because kids barely even get work and they have to be monitored and then once they are done with there roughly 2 hours of work then they want to play and I have to entertain.  I have become a full time mom, cook, cleaning lady, and trying to save my business at the same time.  No one ever said it would be easy but no one said it would be this challenging.  I think the best advise i can give is just know that every single one of your friends and family members are going through the same thing, we are all broke and have no jobs and stuck inside with our families.  Just try and make the most of it.  Also, I stopped watching the news and it made me feel much better it has been 5 days now and my head feels lighter and more optimistic.
Your go-to quick meal? 
My go-to meal for the kids is rice (in the rice cooker) and Kevin’s Natural chicken coconut curry, I add a ton of spinach and its all done in 20 minutes with very little clean up!

Trae Bodge, Lifestyle Journalist

How has life changed for you since being a mother during this unpredictable time? Any advice you would offer to fellow mamas?

Parenting during COVID-19 can be so difficult, especially if your kids are young or have special needs. It’s not lost on me that my daughter is 13 and fairly self-sufficient.

How being a mom has changed is that I need to keep more regular tabs on her; ensuring that she’s adequately challenged and engaged because she has so much downtime. Her dad and I have also agreed to loosen restrictions on phone time and bedtimes so she can stay (virtually) connected socially. We also make sure we spend time with her, watching movies and playing games. This time has not been without its challenges, but we are making the most of it.

My advice to moms would be that you shouldn’t waste energy on trying to be perfect. Social media and it’s curated content can cause us to feel like we’ll never live up to what we see on our scroll. Enjoy looking and find inspiration, but try to be your best, not someone else’s.

Your go-to quick meal?

My husband and I decided to become vegetarians in mid-February. Since then, we – or he, given that he’s the main cook around our house – have made sure to have containers of prepped ingredients, like cooked grains, vegetables and tofu, and healthy dressings, ready to eat. It’s made meal prep easy and healthy, and we’re less likely to slip into bad habits during self-isolation.

Annie Jackson, Co-Founder of Credo Beauty

How has life changed for you since being a mother during this unpredictable time? Any advice you would offer to fellow mamas?

I have two teenagers, so it’s easier in the sense that they understand this is affecting everyone and we just have to power through. What’s challenging is they are really aware – and this is scary.  So we try and have something each day that’s fun we can together and focus on that.  We live in a beach town – so luckily surfing and long walks are great.  But sometimes it’s even just going to a drive and parking next to their friend in the next car over and rolling down the window and talking for 30 min.  It’s surreal and weird, but does wonders for their spirits.

Your go-to quick meal? 

I have mastered the cheese quesadilla with avocado and salsa while on a zoom call in under like 7 minutes.

Celebrity Makeup Artist, Jamie Greenberg

How has life changed for you since being a mother during this unpredictable time? Any advice you would offer to fellow mamas?

This has certainly been a roller coaster ride you can’t get off. At first I was emotional and scared. Now were in week 5 and we have a real schedule with our kids. We start the day at 8:00 with them. They have to get dressed, eat breakfast, brush teeth, and make their beds (which never happened before). Then they do school from 9-11 and play outside until noon. We eat lunch at noon and after that they get to do video games or anything they’re into that day. Then we all eat dinner together (which we never did) and then they can play or we’ll do something like painting or watch a show together. Everyone in bed by 8:30/9. The kid have learned to help with dishes and laundry too. So routine has made everything easier. Now that doesn’t mean some days I’m talking to myself and crying in the corner…that happens too. But routine and team work make the family flow!

Your go-to quick meal?

I’ve been cooking up a storm. Bread is easy but takes a long time. I think the easiest meal that my family loved was ribs. I don’t eat meat but they do. You take a rack of ribs and incase it in tin foil and rub a mixture of salt, pepper, lawrys steak rub, brown sugar and cane sugar. Cook on 350 for 1 hour. Then take it out and smother it in bbq sauce and cook for another 1.5 hours. DELICIOUS. EASY. Just need the time. Other than that it’s pasta and chicken fingers or frozen pizza. LOL

Soulstrologist, Ambi Kavanagh

How has life changed for you since being a mother during this unpredictable time?

In some ways life is not really that different, but in other ways it is totally different. Asher was six months old when the lockdown/quarantine started and I had pretty much been in lockdown since his birth last Fall, as I took maternity leave some time post-partum to adjust to life as a new mother, plus I had a deadline for my first book. Just as I met my deadline, Asher started sleeping in his own room and through the night and I was ready to re-emerge, life got shutdown, much to my disappointment. In some ways, my life hasn’t changed very much from my previous routine of being largely at home, with a daily walk with Asher. However due to current circumstances, we are without the help of our incredible post partum doula who came over for a few hours a few times a week and helped take care of Asher and to be honest, us! We not only really miss her as she has become part of our family, but also miss having those few hours of help each day which were such a luxury as it allowed us some ‘downtime’ where we could switch off for a short period. Like many parents our domestic workload has increased massively over the last six weeks and this combined with juggling work, and not being able to have the respite of the activities which we took for granted prior to the shutdown (my husband plays tennis, I love to hike, or take a yoga class) has definitely impacted us. We have learnt to divide the chores and conquer. I am also getting used to the fact that my home is messy and frankly not as clean as it usually is and I would like it to be. But I am constantly brought back to what is truly important. Asher is changing so much everyday and we are getting to experience every moment of his progression together as a family and that is priceless. He is healthy, as are we and our extended families. And this quality time together without the usual distractions is something I feel we will cherish for the rest of our lives.

Any advice you would offer to fellow mamas?

The only advice I would offer to fellow mamas is to be kind to yourself. Motherhood is the most miraculous, magical gift, but is also all consuming and exhausting. During Covid, it is even more intense. Don’t beat yourself up or attempt to do it all or be ‘perfect’. There is beauty in the imperfection and mess of this current time. Love your family, but love
yourself too by giving yourself a break , even if that means forgoing doing the dishes or laundry to meditate, or watch TV, or read. The dishes can wait. You deserve some downtime.

Your go-to quick meal?

My husband is the chef in our family. He makes a mean omelet with spinach, feta and tomatoes. Delicious and good for you, plus it only takes a few minutes of me putting my ‘order’ in for it to be ready!

Sasha Plavsic, Founder and Chief Creative Officer of Ilia Beauty

How has life changed for you since being a mother during this unpredictable time?

Life has changed a lot. Everything still feels very busy but in a different way. Like many working parents, work is much a bigger challenge to manage than it used to be. Yet with all the interruptions during the day, there are so many beautiful moments with my kids that I know I will miss when this is all over.

Any advice you would offer to fellow mamas?

When get in the morning, try to move for 20 mins. It could be a walk around the block, some quick excercises in your bedroom with your kids. Whatever makes you feel uplifted. That energy will help carry you through the day when the up’s and down’s hit.

Your go-to quick meal? 

Rice, green beans and organic sausages. Each can be prepped and made in roughly 10. This is a balanced way for the kids to eat, and the adults too!

Nina Tooley, Co-Founder of Little Lamma

How has life changed for you since being a mother during this unpredictable time?
If I start thinking about the situation we’re in on a macro level, I go to a dark place, so I’m trying to take one day at a time. When you’re a mom there’s no hitting pause – you have to move forward with a steady hand, even if you’re panicking inside. Like everyone, I was quite manic for the first two weeks, frantically switching into home-school mode, putting out work fires, meme-ing up a storm, trying to figure out how to keep the family safe and food in the fridge. What helped me the most is realizing that this is not a time to optimize anything. I’m putting my boys’ well-being first, and if they need to take a break from school and dig holes in the yard all afternoon, that’s what they do. The best thing you can do for yourself is to relax your expectations a bit and find joy wherever and however you can, each day. And please, please, please stay home! This may feel like forever, but it’s not.
Your go-to quick meal? 
During my “good” quarantine days I’ve morphed into Julia Childs and I’m whipping up new and exciting meals with a glass of wine in my hand. Lemon risotto got an enthusiastic thumbs up from the boys but for the most part they reject everything. Also my husband is gluten-free and I love carbs so that adds yet another layer of complexity to meal planning. One dinner that’s been a go-to fan-favorite for the last few years is a make-your-own taco bar. The boys love rice, beans, and guacamole, and I can sauté whatever veggies are in the fridge to add to it. It really feels like winning when dinner is easy and also makes everyone happy.
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