It’s Smarty Mom Saturday and I am so excited to introduce my very first stay-at-home bud, PerMar. We met when our oldest were four months old and we were desperate for adult interaction. Enter Gymboree off Providence Road. We became fast friends and I have deferred to PerMar for all of my Smarty mom advice, big and small. PerMar and her husband Jon have lived in Charlotte since graduating college in 1996 and have three children, Baker (7), Hayes (4 1/2) and Virginia (2). Meet my super Smarty friend, PerMar.
What do you think prepared you most for becoming a mommy?
Who said I was prepared? Honestly, I am still preparing, and my oldest child is 7!
What is your favorite thing about being a stay-at-home mom?
Daytime television…just kidding. I love the idea that every day has the possibility to contain a new adventure – whether it’s a park or a museum or a library, we are a fairly mobile group.
What is the biggest difference between having boys vs/ having a girl?
Where do I begin? For a start, boys are much more physical – they seem to require more space to move around. And my boys would rather be playing outside, while my daughter is happiest reading in the playroom.
What is a “typical” day like your household?
We are up with the sun, eat a quick breakfast and then we are going, going, gone. During the school year, we are out of the house by 8:00am, headed to either first grade, kindergarten or preschool. Afternoons are spent playing in the neighborhood or at an activity – ballet, speech therapy, baseball, soccer, piano lessons, or basketball. The kids eat dinner at 6pm, followed by bath time and pajamas. Jon usually gets home at 6:30 and hangs out with the kiddies while I get the “adult” dinner prepared. After the children go to bed at 7:30 (in a perfect world), Jon and I eat dinner and attempt to catch up! During the summer, the “schedule” is a bit more relaxed – longer days at the pool, eating out more often, traveling, etc.
What is your favorite activity with your kids?
Recently, we have enjoyed the Pops in the Park on Sunday nights. We pack the wagon with food, drinks and toys and head over there early, around 5:30pm. This picture was taken at the last one.
What is your favorite restaurant with kids?
Saturday mornings at Eddie’s are a tradition dating back to newlywed days. They have yummy breakfast food and are very child-friendly.
What is your favorite date-night spot?
Jon and I love movies, so we often grab a glass of wine and an appetizer at the Dean & Deluca Wine Bar before catching a flick at Phillips Place Cinema.
What is your favorite children’s boutique?
For “nice” clothes, I have always loved Talbots Kids for my boys and Tennille & Co for my little girl. For everyday play clothes, I am all over the map – from Target and Wal-Mart to Children’s Place and Old Navy.
What is your favorite weekend escape?
It’s REALLY hard to find someone to stay with three kiddies, so all of our trips are “weekenders” – it’s about all we can manage! Last fall we flew up to Toronto and loved it. It’s an interesting city with a European flair, and it’s a direct flight from here – only 2 1⁄2 hours and you are in Canada.
Our favorite park is actually the playground at Carmel Presbyterian Church. It’s close to our house; it’s fenced in; and they have two separate playgrounds, one for younger kids and one for older ones. There is also a large grassy area and picnic tables if you want to bring food.
Favorite birthday part you’ve attended?
My oldest, Baker, went to a friend’s party on a Saturday morning at 9am, and everyone came in their pajamas and ate dinosaur-shaped pancakes. I thought that was pretty fabulous.
Best thing about raising a family in Charlotte?
It’s a city in transition and it’s neat to be a part of that.
I could not live without my…
My library card – what can I say, I’m a librarian!
I wish someone told me sooner about…
All of the information needed to make an informed decision about my children’s school. I had no idea of how many choices were available, or the amount of paperwork, or how to navigate both the public and private admissions processes.
Best kept secret in Charlotte?
The chicken salad at Phil’s Deli is delicious and you can buy it by the pound.
Thanks, PerMar! If you have a Smarty mom or dad you’d like to nominate, please email us. We would love to share your story:-)