Des Moines Parent Spotlight: Sarah Kelly
I first learned about Sarah Kelly through FemCity Des Moines. One of my favorite networking groups for women in Des Moines. I began following her on social media and fell in love with all of her amazing tips and tricks when it came to fashion. As a mother, she knows the struggle of having a budget, having limited time to get dress and more. Not only does she share amazing style tips, but shares great recipes, products, and resources she is loving and much more. Learn more about Sarah, her adorable family, and her fun business The Haute Homemaker.
Give us a little background of your family and personal life! How many kids do you have? Have you lived in Des Moines all your life?
I grew up in Michigan, and the suburbs of Chicago then moved to Denver after college until 2016. I met my husband Brian in 2009, and we got married in the mountains in 2010. We had our two kids, Drake (5) and Shay (3) in Littleton Colorado, where we lived and loved just 10 minutes from the foothills, for 6 years.
But in 2016 we felt called to leave our life in Colorado to start over in Des Moines where my husband grew up. He was ready to change jobs in law enforcement, and we needed the help and support of family close by. So we packed up our lives and moved to Ankeny….with no jobs, just the faith that God was leading up to a new life and a fresh start.
What is your business, and what do you do?
I own a wardrobe consulting business www.closetcurating.com, and style and life blog The Haute Homemaker.
Why did you become a small business owner?
I started my style and lifestyle blog The Haute Homemaker in 2014, a few months after having my son Drake. It was a way for me to share my love and passion for fashion, but also be my creative outlet as I was staying at home to care for our baby. But most importantly I wanted my blog to be a place of love and encouragement for other women in the beautiful but very vulnerable seasons of motherhood.
As I new mom I saw how hard it was to do simple things like getting dressed each day, take a few minutes for myself, in order to find refreshment and to care for my needs. I wanted to help other women be the best mom’s, and wives they could be, but that starts with filling up your empty cup first. And for me as a new mom, it was getting dressed each day, putting on a bit of makeup, that helped me feel my best, so I could conquer my day, and love those around me well.
This ultimately leads to me to start my wardrobe consulting business www.closetcuarting.com in 2018, which is my true passion. Working in women’s closets is such a personal thing. It’s a place where we go daily to dress our naked bodies, with clothing that expresses a part of who we are! I love being able to help women style their wardrobes and simplify their lives, by cultivating a purposeful wardrobe they truly love.
Where is your favorite place to take your children to play indoors?
We love going to The Children’s Museum in the winter time, as well as the library, in Ankeny, Johnston, and West Des Moines. They have such great story times, and fun play areas to interact with other kids and moms. Some days it is my saving grace to help us get out of the house and get the wiggles out in the colder months.
Where is your favorite place to take your children to play outdoors?
We love exploring new parks, and trails around town. We live right off the High Trestle Trail and spend a lot of time biking and walking on it. Big Creek state park is also another one of our favorite places to explore in the spring/summer/fall. We are def an outdoorsy family, and soak up as much fresh air and sunshine as we can!
Parent’s day/night out. Describe your perfect parent only day/night out in Des Moines.
Date day/nights are very special for us since they don’t happen very often in this phase of life. But, we do try and make it a priority to go on 2-3 dates per month. My husband and I love to try new restaurants downtown. Then walk around, maybe go to a coffee shop, find a bench to sit down on, or a park to walk around, to talk and people watch. It is a time for us to catch up, talk about how we are doing, individually, and in our marriage relationship, and what we are encouraged about lately. We make it a rule to NOT talk about the kids while we are on date night, and try to keep the focus off of our work, also. That way we truly have a chance to connect, to enjoy each other, laugh, and keep things fun and spontaneous.
What are some tips on juggling parenthood, working, and personal life?
Finding balance as a business owner, creator, wife, and being a mom who intentional and involved with each of my kids lives, can definitely be a challenge. But I try and be intentional in whatever I am doing, and really be present at the moment. When I am working, I am focused and productive, and when I am with my kids and husband, I try to be present and be off my phone or thinking about work. Setting those boundaries, and times of day/ days of the week, when I am working, or off, or sabbath, has helped balance our lives and helped me feel less of the “mom guilt” I have had in the past, as a work-at-home mom, and police officer wife. I am still a work in progress with this!
Taking a Sabbath is something I have also implemented in my life and our families life each week, over the past year. Intentionally setting aside 1 day each week to rest, unplug, and be off my phone, has been life-changing for me. Working myself to the point of burnout was not helping my marriage relationship, my mothering, my friendships, or my health. Learning how to say “no”, and when to rest is so important as mom’s because it is a 24/7 job.
“You can’t fill others up, with an empty cup” Learning to care for me in small little ways was huge! Not feeling guilty to take a few minutes each day for my quiet time in the morning. Spending 15-20 mins to get dressed and ready for the day. To fuel my body properly with clean food and exercise. Also, saying “no” to things. These things all help me to be the best wife/mom/friend I can be.
What is your number one parenting tip?
Overpack and prepare for everything, especially with little ones. I never left home without snacks. Little activities, books (hello Target Dollar Spot) for my kid’s. Diapers, wipes, hand sanitizer, essential oils, sunscreen, extra clothes, for being around town, in the car, in stores, and traveling. Assign each kid to own their backpack and water bottle and keep those filled daily/weekly with little things. Then everything is in one place. Just grab the backpacks and go. This kept my sanity and saved us lots of money over the years.
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