We love to see how families use Tubby Todd in their homes every day. Follow along with our series, A Day with the Basics to meet some real life Tubby Todd mamas! Today, we are checking in with Alison Mazurek of 600 Sq Ft and a Baby. She and her husband and their two adorable kiddos, Theo and Mae, live an intentional lifestyle in a 600 sq ft studio apartment. Read about what her day to day looks like, what it's like to live small as a family of four, and what motherhood has taught her below. Enjoy!
Q: What does an average day look like for you?
A: Not every day is the same for us. I work part-time as a project manager for an interior design studio. Theo is in kindergarten and Mae is in part-time daycare. On days I work, Trevor (husband) and I trade off dropping off and picking up kids. Even when I’m working, I’m grateful for a flexible schedule to drop and pick my kids up. We have dinner together or trade off for workouts a couple times a week.
When I have Mae at home with me I take her to an art or dance class or a play date. I rarely get much work done with her and that’s ok for now. I work on my blog at night or I steal an hour here and there during the week. On the weekends we have dinners with friends in one of our tiny apartments with too many adults and kids. We get outside as much as possible going to local parks, coffee shops and taking advantage of our beautiful city.
Q: Tell us about living small with two littles! What are the biggest challenges? Biggest rewards?
A: Living with two little kids in 600 square feet can be really challenging, especially during the winter months, but it’s also really wonderful. We get creative with our space, where all spots in our home are played in but everything eventually needs to go back in its proper place. We have canvas bins for storage and shelves for books and toys.
I actually really love being so close to the kids. I can always hear them (and usually see them :) ) so I feel really connected with them. Sometimes this means I really need a break from them (ha!) but most of the time I’m grateful for the closeness. I believe that we all have to get along better because of our close quarters. The kids have grown up sharing their toys and their space and I think this can only benefit them. They are learning to work out their problems together and find a way to get along.
Q: You have an incredible eye for photography and design, where does your passion stem from?
A: Oh I’m not sure about that… if you look faaar back in my instagram you can see all my foggy filtered photos with bad angles, haha. But thanks for saying that. I love beautiful modern spaces and finding beautiful moments in the everyday. It all feels like it’s going by so fast and sometimes I can get caught up in the to-do lists or should haves and I’m glad that I take pictures so I can look back and realize how truly lucky we are.
Q: We love hearing people talk about their dreams. What are some of yours? They can be simple and small, bucket list goals or experiences, or an overall grand hope for life.
A: I’d like to stay in our small space a bit longer and stretch ourselves to become even more efficient with our space and reduce our environmental footprint. We’ve taken a lot of small steps to improve how much waste we accumulate but we can still do better, particularly with buying better and focusing on less packaged goods and food.
I’d also like to help more people live small with kids if that’s what they want. We have benefitted from this lifestyle and I’m looking for ways to help others do the same beautifully and comfortably. Haven’t found the exact forum yet so working on that now!
In a larger sense… I hope my kids grow up to be to good and kind people. I hope they know who they are and love themselves enough so that they can give back to others. I also hope they still want to hang out with me when they are adults.
Q: How do you make bathtime/skincare fun for your kiddos. Do they have a favorite routine?
A: Mae (almost 3) has very sensitive skin that is prone to eczema so we have to moisturize her skin regularly. We always try to use natural creams but still some burn or irritate her. It’s hard to see her uncomfortable. I’m so happy the Tubby Todd creams have been gentle and moisturizing for her. She is quite vocal about which creams she likes and she requests the “blue cream” (Dream Cream) all the time now :) .
Q: Do you have a favorite Tubby Todd product? What do you love about it?
A: I love having a natural shampoo for the kids. The light scent and that I don’t have to worry about what product is going on their skin. There’s so many things to worry about these days as a parent and anything that relieves worry for me is a win.
Q: What is the biggest lesson you have learned from motherhood?
A: Letting go. Letting go of control, of schedules, of perfection and unreasonable expectations. I have learned (and am still learning) to be present and exist in the now which has been really difficult but ultimately rewarding. Finding that calm in the city has been a particular kind of lesson but I love the simplification of walking everywhere and having everything we need within blocks of us.
Q: What is something you’re most looking forward to in the coming year? In the next five years?
A: On the bigger goal side we are saving up for a big trip next year and hope to travel to Europe again. Traveling with kids is not a vacation but it’s always an adventure and worth it for us.
Follow along with Alison and her family on Instagram @600sqftandababy.