Chrissy Powers is a powerhouse: a mother, wife, therapist, photographer and blogger. She and her husband, Sam, live in San Diego with their two boys. They spend their free time exploring southern California, working in their garden, exercising and going to the beach. Ahead, Chrissy chats about her perfect date night (which includes a nap!), tips for working through the highs and lows of marriage and her unique "spirit animal."
Can you tell us a little a bit about your family, where you live and what you do?
Hi! I’m a mom to two boys Waylon (older) and Zeke (younger), I’m also a marriage and family therapist, photographer and writer at chrissypowers.com. We’re stoked to be living in San Diego in a house we built overlooking the sea. We love being outdoors at the beach, hanging out with friends and exploring new places in our city.
You look like you juggle being a therapist, a photographer and mom with such ease. How do you manage your time? Are you very scheduled or more flexible? Any tricks you use to stay productive?
That’s the best compliment ever cause some weeks are pretty hairy. Mothering is my main gig so I try to make that my main priority. But I balance working as a therapist and photographer by working at night when my husband comes home or hiring a babysitter here and there. I have to be flexible when trying to balance things as a working-stay-at-home mom, so my hours of work vary from answering emails at naptime to photo-editing and writing at night when the kids go to sleep. My number one tip to staying productive is utilizing my iphone with reminders, appointments and tackling emails in the car when on the off chance both kids fall asleep in their carseats. I also try to stay inspired and creative by listening to podcasts when I workout or drive!
What are your favorite activities to do with Waylon and Zeke?
I love to run with them around our neighborhood in the jogging stroller or by the beach, visit local plant nurseries to pick out something new for our garden and go to the zoo or Balboa park.
If you could describe Waylon and Zeke each in one word, what would the words be and why?
Waylon would be “Soulful” because he’s sensitive, passionate and feels deeply and Zeke would be “Sweet” because he’s got this disposition around others that’s just kind and loving and cuddly.
As a therapist, you probably self-analyze ;) What is your favorite quality about yourself?
Ha ha yes all the time and sometimes wayyyyy too much. I like that I have gumption. Sometimes that quality looks like impulsivity but mostly I think it’s me just wanting something so badly I’m willing to fight, risk, and fail at things in order to achieve my goals.
What is one quality that you find challenging about yourself?
I worry too much about what others think.
We are loving the #togetherwemother hashtag - can you tell us what it means to you?
Yes! I love this project. A group of us mother’s write on the same topic once a month and post to our blogs. It’s been so fun to challenge myself in this way to write about different topics in motherhood that maybe I wouldn’t think to write about on my own. #togetherwemother means that we’re not alone in motherhood and that we’re not all the same. Mothering is diverse yet knits us all together and I love that so much.
If you had to impart a single nugget of wisdom for expectant mothers/fathers what would it be?
Don’t put too many expectations on yourself or your child. You will change throughout parenthood and so will your baby. Some moments will be like ones you’ve dreamt about and other’s will make you question whether you’re cut out for the job… but if you can be flexible in your thinking and present in the moment you’ll enjoy it so much more.
You mentioned in a blog post recently that you and your husband worked through a few tough years together using a some different strategies - one strategy being couples counseling. What do you recommend for couples who might feel like they need a little help?
Yes marriage isn’t easy and being married and raising children together can make it even more challenging. Sam and I both highly recommend finding a couples therapist that you both connect with and trust. I also recommend scheduling time once a week to hang out with you spouse to connect and have fun, maybe watch a show together, sit down to dinner or coffee together or listen to a podcast and talk through your individual take-aways.
What would a perfect date night look like?
Live music in a beautiful place with a good food and a glass of wine, and then maybe a nap.
What’s your ideal family vacation spot?
We love Santa Cruz because we have family there and memories from many family vacays before us but we also really want to get back to Hawaii someday with our boys!
When your kids are grown up and out of your house, how will your Saturday morning look?
Ahhhhh I’m going to be a horrible empty nester ha ha! This is a great question though. I hope it looks like coffee, reading, listening to music and then meeting up with our boys and or grandkids at the beach to surf and play. That would be so fun!
A few partnerships have cropped up in your blog and instagram lately (Old Navy!) - that’s so exciting to be able to work with brands you’re passionate about. Can you tell us a bit about it?
Yes! That was so fun. I was so honored to partner with Old Navy and honestly it’s been kind of a dream come true. I feel like blogging for me has allowed me to combine everything that I love into one really good and enjoyable job. Partnering with brands has allowed me to keep being creative, write about things that matter to me and hopefully others and provide for my family; I’m so so grateful.
What’s your mom uniform? Favorite piece in your closet today?
Most days it’s the same black Lululemon crop leggings and a white tee and vintage army jacket I found that I absolutely love. If I do get out of workout wear I gravitate to my Mother denim, Pons sandals, white tee or tank, and sweater or jacket.
What’s your favorite form of exercise at the moment?
Circuit training, I love how I can work out intensely for 20 minutes and feel like I fully challenged myself.
Your photos on instagram and on your blog are absolutely beautiful - do you have any tips for capturing family moments? Special time of day? Gear you love? Tips/tricks?
Thank you! The best family moments that capture are real, like my children are really laughing or being themselves. We have good lighting in our house most of the day thanks to my husband putting huge windows in it, but I’m certainly mindful of how the light looks at certain times of day. I know when things will look their best because of lighting and I try to take advantage of it by shooting the subject by a window with natural light. For example, if you want a warm and really pretty photo of something wait until sunset time and you’ll get that golden light that makes things so sweet and soft. I really like my 50 mm fixed lens on my digital camera, it took my photography to a whole new level when I invested in it.
Think you’ll stay in southern california forever? Where do you envision retiring?
I think so. We love our community here and live by the ocean so we know we’re pretty blessed. And if we have it my way we will retire where ever our children are.
What is one thing you are dreaming of doing in the next year? 5 years?
Traveling more and writing and documenting our adventures.
Final Question: Meghan is a hawk and Liz is a mountain goat. What’s your spirit animal?
Probably an Orca Whale...not sure what that says about me. ;)
We are always inspired by you, Chrissy! Thanks for sharing with us.
Meghan & Liz
All images are from Chrissy's Instagram.