Mom to Justin, age 5 and Nicolas, age 4
Nominated by Tim Larkins:
Danielle is the definition of giving and the embodiment of selflessness. In addition to raising two active, respectful preschoolers and keeping a tidy ship, Danielle is helping out other moms in the community. Even though she’s overworked and exhausted from managing her children, home and successful blog, www.typedblog.com, I see her cooking a second meal for another family, babysitting a friend’s kids or gathering blankets to literally clothe the homeless in D.C.
Q&A with Danielle
What’s the best parenting advice you’ve ever received?
My mom once told me, “Never be lazy as a parent.” That’s always been a good mantra for me because it reminds me that my efforts and actions will pay off, even if I’m doubtful (and exhausted) at that moment.
What advice would you give to new or expectant mothers?
Oh man, there’s lots I’d love to say. My first piece of advice is the importance of one-on-one time with each child. I try to do this every day with my kids, even if it’s just 10-15 minutes. It’s great “bonding” time and shows them I care, and my kids behave better for the rest of the day.
My second advice is to carve out time for yourself, regularly. I spent WAY too much time putting myself last, and I burned myself out. I eventually realized I didn’t need to lose myself and my hobbies just because I’m now caring for others.
How has motherhood changed your outlook on life?
Motherhood’s provided me with purpose. It’s given me lots to look forward to and helped me appreciate the little things. It’s almost as if I’m seeing life through the lens of a child again; lots of novelty, excitement and exploration.
Describe a favorite mom moment.
The other day, I saw Justin try to cheer up a boy he just met at the park, who was crying. He got down on the ground and tried to make him laugh by playing peek-a-boo. Not only was it cute, but it also showed me that tender side I don’t always get to see at home.
My second favorite moment was hearing Nicolas say he wants to be just like me. I remember thinking, “Is this a parenting win?”
What goals do you have for your children?
My goal is for them to find their passion, pursue it and be the best at it. I also want them to contribute to the community, or even the world, in a positive way.
What are some of your greatest accomplishments?
As a mother, it’s raising empathetic and respectful kids. Professionally, it’s having my writing published in the Washington Post’s “On Parenting” and being asked to appear on Fox 5 D.C. several times.