Samantha Edwards, Co-Founder and Creative Director, gives The Newsette insights on having her morning cup of coffee, running a successful Digital Agency, and being a new mother.
4:00 – 4:30am:
I’m a first-time mother and my almost 6-month-old son James usually wakes me up for his pre-breakfast feed. In the beginning, it was a shock to the system – but I’ve really come to treasure the stillness and “just us” time that this ungodly hour of the morning brings.
I’m usually awake and ready to roll, husband leaves for work and while feeding/playing with James – I’ll watch the news, get his clothes ready for the day and check email on my phone. Multi-tasking on a whole new level. I usually down a glass of Kefir or if I’m really lucky a bowl of oatmeal to gear me up for workouts.
Priscilla is James’ nanny and she usually arrives at 6:30 A.M. at which time I promptly run downstairs to the gym to meet my trainer. I hired Marlon to kick my ass and help me get back to my pre-baby weight. Working out also really knocks the cobwebs off and helps me get focused for the day. We do a mix of interval training and boxing to keep things fresh – treadmills and elliptical machines are just unbearable for me.
It’s usually at this time that it’s a race to beat the clock and get to the office. As our HQ is in New York, I keep all clocks on Eastern time (much to the annoyance of everyone who steps foot in the door). I’m pretty quick in the shower but have a pretty rigorous skin/body care routine. Whole Foods Charcoal Soap for the body, followed by Sabon’s Delicate Jasmine Body Scrub, for face I use Clinique’s liquid facial soap. I’m obsessive about moisturizing so for body I use E45 Spray (I buy boatloads of it when I’m in the UK) and if I’m low on that I use Vaseline Intensive Care’s Cocoa Spray and & Go moisturizer, and then Cetaphil or Vanicreamon drier parts of my body. I know this sounds insane but I’m obsessed with good skin and keeping it moisturized/hydrated. All this usually takes 15 minutes after which point I’m ready to go back to bed (kidding). I then apply “face” (Nars Dark Cacao concealer and Make Up Forever lipstick No 43). I usually try to smother the baby in kisses before I apply makeup and then cover him in red lippie again when I’m running out the door.
I’m usually at the office by 8:10/ 9:10 EST – we just opened our Chicago office (yay!) at Industrious Chicago, which is a 10-minute walk from the apartment. I usually call my brother (and business partner) on the way to work to discuss anything standout that’s upcoming or our strategies for the day. It’s awesome working with my brother – we don’t fight which is annoying and surprising to many – and have the same goals “to succeed,” so it’s a win/win for the business. I grab coffee at the free coffee station before getting to work and responding to emails and writing my to-do list. Aside from the 4/4:30 A.M. beat, this again is my favorite time of the day as I get to really focus on JUST work and outline what I need to do/achieve that day. Prior to the office rental, I was working from home at my desk, it was the same routine but there’s something about leaving home and going somewhere that you just can’t beat!
We have daily standups at 8:30/930 EST with the creative team, so by 8:45/9:45 I’m taking calls with clients or talking to the designers about their designated tasks on projects. I love my “job!”
I give Priscilla a call to see how James is doing and then almost always a quick 5-minute call to my Mum back in the UK (it’s usually towards the end of her work day) so we’ll chat for 5 minutes. Then it’s usually meetings and feedback sessions. We’re working on some really cool initiatives at the agency including an online zine that’s been months in the making. Launch is in December so a large chunk of my mornings is usually designated to dealing with the multiple components tied to it.
By now I’m usually in my groove, so I’m either playing the latest I-D mix on Soundcloud or as the case maybe right now – playing A$AP MOB’s – Crazy Tapes Volume 1 – definitely a change from the Baby Einstein’s Lullaby compilation that’s on steady rotation at home.
It’s funny because 10 A.M. usually feels like 1 P.M. for me as I’ve usually had 1 or 2 meetings and delegated numerous tasks to the team by then – in addition to Facetiming with James for a quick 2 minutes. I wouldn’t have it any other way – being a working Mum has its downsides and its perks and I’m lucky enough to be able to “kind of” balance it all.