Kathryn Sansone is the author of Woman First, Family Always and the mother of ten children.
"While I never forget that I am my children's mother and my husband's wife, I know that I must always remain connected to me, to who I am as a woman."
Kathryn Sansone has captured national attention for her heartwarming and hands-on approach to managing motherhood and life. She has been interviewed for Inside Edition and magazines such as Parents, Fit Pregnancy, and Child, and been honored as Chief Everything Officer by America Online. Kathryn lives in St. Louis with her husband, Jim, and their ten children, ranging in age from one to nineteen years.
Happily married and the mother of ten, Kathryn Sansone is centered, fit, organized, and beautiful. But Supermom? Absolutely not. Welcome to her club.
"My life does not always go smoothly, and how can it when ten children guarantee constant change? But that's the point -- by keeping my roles in balance, I remain at peace and am more able to cope with everyday inevitable stresses," she says.
It's no wonder national television shows and magazines have featured Kathryn and that women continually ask her for advice on how she balances her roles as woman, wife, and mother. In this book she translates her everyday experience and strategies into simple yet life-changing tips that you can use.
Kathryn helps you:
º Understand the importance of taking care of yourself so that you can better care for your marriage and family
º Battle everyday stresses with her real-life wisdom, insight, and confidence-building advice
º Strengthen body, mind, and spirit to achieve emotional balance
Along the way, Kathryn uses her signature warmth, understanding, and light humor to reach out to you and help you learn from her own real-life experiences.
Read our review of Woman First, Family Always
º From Amazon U.S.
º From Amazon UK
º From Amazon Canada
Visit Kathryn's website
| StorkNet is very pleased to present our interview with Kathryn Sansone, author of Woman First, Family Always. Kathryn answered visitor questions regarding her book and how to remain a woman first while being a busy wife and mother.
From Sara: I have four children and a fifth on the way. With the sports and other activities the older children are involved in, how do you prevent the younger ones from being "dragged" to event after event? I think this is especially hard with toddlers.
Kathryn's response: Going to your children's events IS a family event. Make it fun and organize ahead of time like pack a picninc dinner, bring a stroller and take the toddler for a long walk and get some excercise while you are there, take that time to spend with the younger ones at the playground (if there is one there). Your older children love when the whole group comes; remember when they get older, the older ones owe the younger ones to come to their events. If the baby is sleeping, you could get a neighbor to come watch so not to drag them out of bed. The more you bring them to the events, the more they will get used to it . . . and act better. Unfortunately, this is our life. Remember, do not overload your older children to doing too many activities where it starts to take away from family time. Family dinners are the key to a successful family; do not eliminate them for a soccer practice every night.
From Sarah: With so many kids, how do you prevent your house from being overwhelmed with toys and "stuff"? I have 4 children and find this hard, especially since it seems children receive so much for birthdays and Christmas.
Kathryn's response: I am the declutter queen. I have one area for kids toys and stuff; make sure that stuff goes back to that area when finished with. Before Christmas every year, clean out the toy closet, get crates with lids for toys, throw away any and all broken toys, and stay away from toys with a lot of parts. For birthdays, instead of everybody bringing gifts for the party, have them bring a book or toy for a charity in need, and have the birthday child and yourself go down to give it to them. You can also crate up a couple of boxes of toys and send over to grandma's house a couple time a year. Remember to declutter your home and car is to declutter your mind!
From Teresa: How can I get my husband involved with household chores with out being a nag?
Kathryn's response: If your husband has NO interest in any household chore either inside or outside the house, does not care about how it would look like after the chore is completed, and does not care how bad it looks before the chore, you will have a tough time getting him to do it. My suggestion would be to find out what chore he likes either inside the house or outside the house (he must have an interest in at least one) and buy him a tool for his birthday that would help him assist him with the chore. Men men love tools! If this does not work, you could promise to do him a favor that you particularly do not like to do either. Good Luck! Remember the tone in your voice dictates his response so . . . be nice.
From Marina: I have four children and I'm worried about college. We've been trying to save for this but with the day-to-day expenses, it's hard even though we try to be frugal. Do you have any tips to share on budgeting and finances with a large family?
Kathryn's response: I am not a finance expert, however, here are some budgeting and finance tips my family have tried with our large crew. Check out the 529 program in your state for a tax deduction. Have your children take as many AP coursed in high school to earn college credit which means less time in college. Check out low-cost schools - public schools. Apply for as many scholarships as you can. My children also work and put away for college themselves.
From Gaye: Hello Kathryn. I'm a single mother of two kids, a boy aged 10 and a little girl who's 5. My son has ADHD and bipolar, and whilst being immensely precious to me is quite a handful. My daughter is full of beans and sometimes exhausting to keep up with! I find that I get quite run-down at times, perhaps you could even say burnt out. What tips do you have to help me cope better and feel better about myself? Thank you so much!
Kathryn's response: Gaye, it is a necessity to take care of yourself! Guilt-free . . . take time each and every day to work-out, spend a few minutes in prayer or silence . . . All of us women have a hard time finding the balance between our woman and mother roles. Similar to the oxygen mask theory, you must put the mask on yourself FIRST and then assist your child. Keep your cup full; you cannot give what you do not have! By taking care of yourself, your children can benefit from a happier, healthier you! Close the door and give yourself a break-guilt free, especially when your children can be more of a challenge.
From Amy: What are your best tips for keeping up with housework!? I have the worst time and I only have 2 kids!
Kathryn's response: Housework? I keep up with housework every day. After each meal, it's important to have the kids pitch in with their chores. . . one wipes down counters and vaccuums and the other clear the dishes and takes out the trash. Do not wait for tomorrow to do "chores." They should be kept up each day . . . laundry, picking up after each other etc. It is overwhelming if you have "chore days" instead of just keeping and picking up as you go along. I will stay up late to make sure I am ready for the next day and then sleep that extra minute in the morning.
From Joely: I have 6 children and my biggest challenge is making time for my husband. When he comes home, we're busy getting dinner ready, bathing kids, helping with homework, and the whole bedtime ritual. By that time, we're both exhausted. We spend the weekends on household chores. My children aren't old enough to be left alone and we don't have the luxury of babysitters. Can you share how you and your husband have managed to make time for each other?
Kathryn's response: With 6 kids, how old is the oldest to watch the other children? My husband and I go out for a cup of coffee for 20 minutes to catch up and communicate. It does not have to be extravagant . . . in the evening after bath and dinner, can you escape for an ice cream and let the oldest watch the others since all the work has been completed? Again, how old is the oldest . . . that was the beauty of having so many children . . . someone had to get older. If not, hire a babysitter once a week or once every two weeks so you know that you have a date with your husband because it is important to nurture that primary relationship. Plus it makes the children feel secure knowing that mom and dad love each other and want to spend time together.
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