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KATIE SANTORO ROACH Founder, Sister Katie
Faced with an hour to yourself (perhaps a problem you don’t often have), what do you do with free time?
It really depends. Usually I work when Wren naps or when her Grandma takes her for a few hours. Over the last couple of months I’ve really had to dial back and I tend to nap at every possible chance I get. I also really try to move my body although I haven’t been too successful with that as of late. When I’m in a groove I LOVEEEE a nice, long walk, the Melissa Wood Health app and classes on The Mirror.
What is the thing you bought in the last three months that you have most enjoyed? (In any product category?
I bought this pair of cotton pants from Doen that my friend Hannah, the Founder of EEMA Studio, recommended. She’s my ultimate go-to and trusted source for all things comfy and beautiful. I’m in love with these Veja sneakers. And I can’t get enough of this ghee. Is that not the most random list ever?
What’s the last song you listened to?
We listen exclusively to the soundtracks from Leap, Tangled, Frozen 1 and Frozen 2.Did you learn anything new in the last 12 months that has surprised you?
I’m always learning new things as a mom and as a small business owner - small silly things, like: renaming pears to “cookie apples” so that my daughter will eat them versus real cookies. And big important existential things, like: ‘happiness does not equal the absence of sadness.’ One truly tangible thing is that I’ve learned to ask for more help. We hired a nanny this year and she is hands down the best decision we have made for our family. I don’t know who loves her more - me or Wren! She makes our family more complete, happier, healthier and just a *touch* more well-functioning.
What is the best parental shortcut you have learned as a mother? Something that makes life easier, more sane, or more fun?
I really try not to be a slave to a routine, although a top line routine is soooo necessary for kids and they absolutely thrive on structure. I do try to set big picture limits and boundaries and adhere to a schedule, but I leave lots of room in between to play and bend and follow Wren’s lead. Tangible shortcuts: I don’t wipe every pee diaper. I use the same cream for diapers as I do for her baby massages (yes, she still gets one of those every day). My friend taught me early on that wax/oil based lotions warm much better in your hands so from the beginning we have used Waxelene as a diaper cream and body lotion. It’s a family favorite we can’t live without (I use it as a lip and hand balm) and we even have a song we sing when it is applied. Oh, and this is a big one: I accept the mess.
2020 has dealt us all with lots of challenges - what was a low moment in 2020 and how did you overcome or face it?
Only one? Just kidding. All things considered, we’ve fared well this past year. We got lucky because we moved to the East Coast to be closer to family about 1 week before lock down. We were actually living with my parents in the early Covid days so we had lots of support and human interaction. With Covid has also come a surprising boom to my business - turns out that our mission to create comfy clothes you never want to take off plays well in a global pandemic. All good of course, but I’ve definitely had to adjust how much time I dedicate to Sister Katie — aside from designing, marketing, Instagram, yada, yada, yada, I also pack and fulfill orders from my house. It’s been pretty non stop.
Notable personal challenges have been trying to build a community in our new town. I miss my friends in San Francisco and I am eager to build out that part of our life in New York. Another challenge has been navigating pregnancy in a Covid world. No major learnings there except taking everything one day at a time.What are you most looking forward to in a post-vaccine world? What bar, restaurant, or place are you most eager to visit?
Rubirosa pizza and meeting my best friend’s daughter. Hi, Millie!
Do you believe in setting personal goals? If so, how do you hold yourself accountable to them?
Hmm yes? Although I don’t necessarily set specific goals as of now. Maybe it is something I’ll try out this year. I have big picture goals in my life to be the healthiest me I can be and therefor the best mother to Wren and partner to my husband, a good sister and daughter/daughter in law. Otherwise I try to keep things pretty in-the-moment. I try not to get too ahead of myself.
How important is community to you, and how do you go about building and nurturing it for your family?
My friends on the West Coast were my absolute life line, especially after I had Wren. We were all somewhat each other’s families by proxy. I miss my crew of people there more than I can really say. We’re currently really missing that element of ours lives but are thankful every single day for our families who we have been able to be with throughout this past year. Wren has 8 cousins, lots of aunts and uncles and 4 amazing grandparents. A major factor in coming back to the east coast was so that she could grow up surrounded by her family.Shop Katie's Look: Puff Sleeve Crewneck Sweater, Textured Knit Top, Textured Knit Skirt, & Slim Knit Dress