Mother’s Day origins (Britannica site) are much more quaint and humble than some may think. No, It wasn’t invented by Hallmark to sell millions of greeting cards … despite the rumors. Mother’s Day was started by the daughter of a woman who had spent her life organizing women’s groups to foster friendship and health. In honor of celebrating friendship and health this digital creative agency wanted to take a few moments to honor the sole mom on our team here at M&P, Caroline Macon Fleischer. We all call her Caro. She’s been a much appreciated member of the M&P team since 2020 and rode the pandemic wave with us up until now. She’s always in a positive mood no matter what our workload looks like and we love the vibe she brings! She’s a writing instructor, author, gardener, ‘90s pop culture nerd and a mom. A fantastic mom, that is, to her son Augie and a doggo mom to boot!
In honor of Caroline and her all around bad-assery we put together a short Q&A to share with our M&P community. As OutKast would say, Happy Mother’s Day to all of the baby’s mamas, mamas mamas, mamas, baby mamas and mamas out there!
You just finished writing a book, you teach, you work in content marketing at a digital marketing agency and you have a family. How has the last year changed the way that you juggle work and raising Augie?
My husband Andy was laid off when the pandemic started. We had a big “WTF” moment because I was working and finishing my last semester of grad school, and we were suddenly without childcare. I thought I was going to have to withdraw from school and that scared me. Thankfully, we were able to survive on Andy’s unemployment and my income for a bit. Andy took on most of the childcare and home responsibilities so I could focus on my degree and make that bacon. Then finally, the boys went back (to school and work, respectively) in fall and the duties have rebalanced. This has been a long period of confusion and constant adjusting for my family, and so many families, but Augie only has one childhood so I’ve tried to treasure this rare time we got to spend at home. All things considered! As for the book, the book is just fun. I’m spoiled because Augie goes to bed around 7 or 8, then I have all night to do me.
How does your family de-stress after a long day/week after work and school?
We’re a great hang because we like nature and recreation as much as we like sitting and doing nothing. So you can find us walking, picnicking, seeing animals, gardening and playground-ing as well as sitting on our butts with lots of snacks.
What about being a mom did you learn from your mom?
My mom’s cooking skills are enviable, but I’ve learned some of her tricks! No matter how busy or broke we were, she always made an occasion of dinner. That meant yummy hot food, everyone sitting at the table, sharing and listening. I definitely emulate that in my house. We eat together every night except on rare occasions. Some days I’m so tired it feels over the top but the effort is worth it to sit down every day and catch up.
You work for a digital marketing agency in addition to being a teacher and a writer. How do you continue the demand to be creative as a mom once the work day has come to a close?
When I got pregnant, my mom was adamant about the idea that I would be a stronger mother if I held tight to my own interests. And that’s been true for me. I’m happier, more present, and more inspired when I have my own things going on. Whenever I let my hobbies and passions go to the wayside, I start feeling like a hamster on a wheel. Teaching is intuitive for me. Even though I teach young adults and my son is in preschool, his eagerness to learn puts me at ease in the same way being in the classroom does. Something about teaching and parenting both keep my writing feeling energized and fresh. Because of the intricacies of mom life as well as wanting to be a good partner to my hubby, plus grading and writing and chores, etc., my days never fully come to a close. I’m tired but fulfilled.
Are there any Mother’s Day traditions (things your family did) that you’d like to keep alive as Augie grows up?
My parents always sort of pawned us off on Mother’s Day and now I see why…lol. I’m easy. Just to know that I’m loved is nice, and I always appreciate some designated introversion time. A couple times a year, Andy sends me away to a hotel room to get good sleep, catch up on reading, or whatever. There’s something about motherhood that can be frantic and guilt-ridden, even when you’re doing everything right. I’m way more emotional than I was pre-baby. Plus I’m young so any reminder that I’m more than just the mom feels like a treat!
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