Name: Alycia Marrapodi
Stats: Wife to husband Joe, mom to two very stylish kiddos (Jagger & Malia), social media & digital consultant and brainchild behind the instagram sensation LA Kids Closet.
Why she's crush worthy: Alycia is an LA cool chick who made the tough decision of leaving her high level job as the Director of Digital Marketing at 20th Century Fox to be an independent social media & digital consultant after having her first child. While the leap from being in a stable work environment was tough, she never lost site of continuing her career...and then some. As if being a wife, mom and consultant isn't enough, a little less than a year ago she started LA Kids Closet - an instagram account where she resales gently used kids clothes. Alycia has always had a keen eye for trends and it's quite apparent that her kids are following in her fashionable footsteps, as she encourages them to embrace individuality.
Hear how Alycia does it all by reading her thoughts on...
- We’ve learned that the best marriage requires…Teamwork. It sounds very cliché but it’s absolutely true. We have to communicate constantly and look out for each other. It also helps to figure out exactly what the other person needs – their baseline for happiness (outside of the basics like sleep and showers) and make sure they get that need met. My husband needs to go for a walk or run every day. We work our schedule around getting that need met and he’s a better husband/father because of it. Sharing Google Calendars for scheduling also saves the day logistically.
- My husband has taught me to... take risks and go after what I want. He’s a lifetime entrepreneur. I had a tough time deciding to leave the corporate world and he really pushed me to take the plunge. I had a lot of questions and uncertainty about how I’d get clients or pay the bills. He kept reminding me that I was a strong asset and because of that, the business opportunities would come. And they did! It’s not always easy to get up and work hard when no one is forcing you to and his drive, discipline and motivation really inspires me.
- Since becoming a mom, I’ve...become a better person. In so many ways, I’m more appreciative of life and my family (especially my own mom!) On a micro level, I take more time to help people whether it is my elderly neighbors, someone who’s short change for a parking meter or needs help carrying something to their car. Becoming a mom has made me realize that life can be hard but it’s a lot easier when you’re not alone so I try to show kindness as often as I can. I’m also aware that my children are learning everything about how to treat other people from my own example. I try to model the kind of behavior I hope to see in them.
- The best moms are the ones who...listen. There are so many things competing for our attention – email, mobile phones, TV, bills, to-do lists. I’m really trying to stop what I’m doing and really listen to my kids. Often my 3 year-old will be upset or on the verge of a tantrum and it’s because I’ve found myself pulling my attention from him and I’m not hearing what his needs are. When I’m really down eye-to-eye with my kids and in-tune to them, that’s when the magic happens. They’re happier, more secure because of it.
On Being a Working Mom & Working From Home
- The biggest misconception about being a mom that works from home is….that I sit around all day in my pajamas watching TV while I work. As soon as my nanny arrives, I’m in the shower, clothes on and sitting at my desk. I have to treat my work from home gig as a real job because it is. There are only so many hours
- It’s challenging to balance…being around the house and not getting sidetracked. There is constantly something to be done around the house – toys to be picked up, laundry to be done, etc. It’s difficult not to just say, “let me pop this laundry in really quickly” because it can snowball really easily and then I’ve lost hours of precious work time. Working has taught me to compartmentalize work vs. family and really try to make the most of my time in each role but avoid mixing the two as much as possible.
- I want to show my kids that a working mom can...achieve professional goals and still be supportive of them. My mom worked and I went to daycare when I was younger. In junior high, I came home alone after school and did homework until my parents finished work. I remember hearing my mom’s high-heeled footsteps on the hardwood floors in the morning and thinking that she looked so important. I always looked up to my mom for having a job. I knew that people outside of our family depended on her and that she was changing the world in some way. I see how those experiences made me more independent and self-motivated. With my own family, I’m trying to achieve some balance of both worlds. I want my kids to see the value of working hard, having a job and responsibility but I also want to be a presence in their lives. I feel fortunate to be able to pick my son up from preschool and take a break to nurse or play with my daughter.
On Kid Fashion
- Kids should wear clothes that...let them move freely and inspire creativity. I’m not a fan of dressing my kids in clothes that restrict them. To me, the beauty of being a child is rolling in the grass, jumping in the mud puddles and painting wildly. When I pick my son up from preschool, it looks like he spent 3 hours rolling in dirt and then dipped his body in paint. It’s quite a combination! I go through a lot of stain stick.
- My favorite kids trends are...leggings, sneakers and slouchy beanies. I have a sneaker addiction that I’m passing onto my son. New Balance just started making old school sneakers for kiddos and they’re next on my list.
- Some of my favorite kid brands...are Mini Rodini, Zara, Prefresh, Hatch for Kids, Mini and Maximus, Tiny Whales, Rock Your Baby, Peak Aren’t You Curious and Beau Loves. My daughter just started walking and I’m really into buying her shoes on Etsy. I just got a cute pair of sheepskin lined TotMocs and adorable soft leather mary janes by Pod Shoes.
- My guilty pleasure is...The Bachelor. It’s so guilty I don’t even know if I should incriminate myself here. It’s such a trainwreck but every week, a group of my friends and I get together to eat dinner, drink wine and watch the crazy go down. It’s become such a ritual for us. I can’t imagine us skipping a season.
- I wish I had more time to...read! I am a book hoarder. I have a stack of magazines and books on my nightstand and throughout my house. Sad to say but I’m so tired at night, I usually read a few pages and pass out. I dream of days sitting on a beach reading a book. It’s honestly one of my very favorite things.
- No matter how busy I am, I always make time...to get a weekly massage. I was in a bad motorcycle accident years ago and I injured my back. Now that I’m a part-time Sherpa, my back really starts hurting and I have to go! It’s probably a blessing in disguise because it forces me to take a beat to myself and breathe. Plus, I always come up with my best ideas on the massage table.
I am constantly inspired by mothers like Alycia who are brave enough to jump into life changes that have a bit of uncertainty. While us moms always have to think 2 steps ahead of the game, sometimes not knowing where the next step will take you is exciting and rewarding. This is a nice reminder that with everything in life you can be strategic, but leave some room for flexibility and you might have the best of both worlds.