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Mother’s Day With Riley and Jess

Mother’s Day is a special day, but it’s also a hard earned day for a lot of women, and for some, it’s just a difficult day. We want you to know you are seen and celebrated too. We’re saving space for you here. We see you and we care about you.

This year, we are honoring the mothers on our own team! We interviewed Riley and Jess to learn more about them and how they celebrate Mother’s Day. 

Riley is the Director of Marketing Communications. She’s the project manager in charge of the Plan to Eat brand, promotions and marketing and has been on the team for eight years! 

Jess is a Front End Software Engineer and Designer. She designs and builds new features and works alongside the marketing team to create advertisements and other marketing materials. Jess is the newest member of the Plan to Eat team and we are so excited to work with her!

Q: What does Mother’s Day mean to you?

Riley: My journey to motherhood was not simple, so I think this day makes me so grateful for a healthy and sweet (and passionate) daughter. It is a day to reflect on that journey, be thankful, and also an excuse to celebrate the little lady who made me a mom.

Jess: Mother’s Day has always been a day to celebrate the women in my life, like my own mother, grandmothers, and my sister. While this is technically my second Mother’s Day (I was about two months pregnant this time last year), I am looking forward to celebrating this day now that my daughter is “on the outside”. It still feels weird to say “I am a mother” but it’s also been the greatest joy as I discover daily what that phrase means to me! This year on Mother’s Day we will be dedicating our daughter with our church family and that will make it extra special. 

Q: How has Mother’s Day changed for you since becoming a mom?

Riley: One of the biggest ways it has changed is my perspective on my own mom and grandmothers. I was always thankful for them, but realizing how hard being a mom really is and how big the job is, gives me so much more appreciation for the legacy of mother’s that came before me.

Jess: The day and its meaning holds more weight for me now as I begin to appreciate the hard work that comes along with motherhood! It’s the most important role I’ve ever been blessed with. It still doesn’t feel real most days… every moment is different and I love that I will have a day to celebrate how motherhood continues to shape me.

Q: What’s your favorite thing about Mother’s Day?

Riley: Admittedly, this is only my 3rd Mother’s Day. So sometimes it still feels like a day where I don’t deserve much fanfare, but I just enjoy a day with my daughter, husband, and dog. I love to be outside, so we usually have a picnic and a low key day together.  And it’s maybe also an excuse to schedule myself a massage. 🙂 

Jess: This will be my first year of celebrating, so I can’t say I have a favorite thing yet. Just being able to spend quality time with my daughter and my husband will be wonderful. 

Q: If you got to request your favorite meal for Mother’s Day (and we hope you do!), what would it be?

Riley: Ribeye steaks, oven-roasted brussels sprouts, mashed potatoes, and a spring salad. YUM. However, I also love a simple breakfast together as a family. Eggs, pancakes, bacon. 

Jess: That’s a tough one! I love all sorts of food. For special occasions I often request that we go out for fondue. My husband makes the most delicious steak though, so I may have to ask for that. We love to cook together – we’ve even made beef wellington from scratch – and our 5 month old daughter loves to watch us in the kitchen, so that may be how we celebrate this year!

Q: What advice do you have for other moms, or soon-to-be moms?

Riley: It is okay to rely on others to help you make it all happen. It is easy to think you have to navigate this motherhood thing all by yourself, but that is nearly impossible. So let others help you and help others too. We’re in it together! 

Jess: Ignore all of the negativity! I let comments really get to me when I was pregnant, such as “you’ll completely lose your identity” or “you think this is hard now, just wait until she’s born/a toddler/a teenager.” “New” or “Challenging” is not the same as “Bad.” For every challenge there’s even more joy. And I haven’t lost my identity; I’ve refocused my purpose and I get to share my passions with my daughter. Seek out the people who want to share in your joy, because they’ll be the ones you can reliably lean on when you’re feeling challenged. 

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