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NICOLE CENTENO Founder, Splendid Spoon
The kids are down, the dog has been fed, and your partner’s otherwise engaged - how do you spend your “me” time, when you get it?
Reading! Or putting on a mask and taking a bath. Or pulling open a fun work project that was sidelined for less-fun priorities :)
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve gotten from a mom that you’ve held on to because it felt resonant?
I can’t remember if someone told me this or I figured it out on my own but the best decision I made early on was to work on my own stress relief. Babies are super intuitive little creatures and if you are relaxed, so is baby.
What is the thing you worried lots about when your child was first born that you’d tell other women to lose less sleep over?
I thought a lot about nursery schools and education and whether or not I was doing enough to nurture my baby’s brain development—constantly reading and talking to him for example. I have definitely taken a more relaxed approach to this since baby number one!
What’s the other career you’d most like to try out, given a second professional life?
I started working in food because I love working with my hands, and that turned into Splendid Spoon because I wanted to scale my own experience into something that could help lots of people. I’d probably take up another craft like sculpture or printmaking and then evolve it into a shared experience again.
Where and how did you meet your best friends? How do you stay in touch and support each other?
I have friends from high school, college, first jobs, traveling and just through the many social experiences I have had in NYC. Seeing them is tough because I prioritize so much of my time to family and work. Whenever possible I include them in things like family dinners and I always make a point to tell friends when I’ll be in their neighborhood. I try to do at least two girls' trips a year with a couple groups who are super dear to me. Staying connected through Instagram and group texts has been really helpful as well.
What are the nicest things your partner does for you, and you for them?
Henry makes me breakfast just about every morning and I feel like I start the day one step ahead. It’s such a beautiful and simple daily gift! My favorite ways to say I love you are with little love texts at random times of the day. Whenever I’m thinking of him I send him a little note.
What traditions are you building - or planning to build - for your family? Why do they matter to you?
Sitting together at mealtimes is really important for me - I love this opportunity to just enjoy food, and nourish our bodies with togetherness after a long day of tasks. It has morphed into everyone getting involved with our different rituals as well: setting the table, cooking, lighting candles. I also tell the kids something that made me proud of them and grateful before we go to sleep. It’s important to close the day with something positive!
What are the things in your closet that you know you’ll be using and loving in three years?
This is interesting -- I try to only buy things that I’ll love for much longer than 3 years, so I’m a bit of a collector. I have a red Lanvin skirt shaped like an upside-down tulip that I purchased second-hand over 10 years ago that I will always treasure. A pair of lavender pumps from Coclico will hopefully stand the 3-year test as well. And another vintage find - a white silk pleated dress that has been a nice piece to wear through pregnancy as well.
What’s the last thing you celebrated?
My elopement! Some of our close friends hosted a lovely dinner for us and even brought a home-made wedding cake.
What has been the hardest part of pregnancy dressing? What product would you like FH to add to our assortment?
Undergarments! I’d love some beautiful belly-friendly hosiery. And oversized sweaters - I can never have enough of those.