Friday, May 3, 2013

Interesting Person Interview Series: Laura

This week I'm thrilled to share my interview with my cousin Laura.  Laura is both an awesome cousin, and a fabulous mother to the adorable little Mr. William.  I am thrilled that she is willing to participate in the interview series.  

Laura's interview, after the break!

1) What is your name, and who are you? 
Laura Manos

2) How do you know Kate?  
I'm her cousin... her mother (Jen) is the younger sister of my father (Dan)

3) Tell me about a typical day in your life.
A typical weekday in my life starts with my alarm going off at 5:30am. I promptly turn it off and roll over in hopes of falling back asleep. A second alarm goes off at 5:45am. I usually lay in bed for another ten minutes before draggin myself out of bed. Once I'm up, I start getting ready for work. Around 6:15am, my husband's alarm goes off, which he somehow manages to sleep through. So I take it upon myself to turn off his alarm and make sure he's awake. Somewhere between 6:30 and 7 the baby (William) starts making noise. Sometimes he is actually up and sometimes he stirs but falls back asleep. If he is actually up, I spend some time with him before heading out the door for work. I try to leave the house by 6:55am and absolutely no later than 7:20am.

Thankfully, I have a short "commute," although I'm not sure it even qualifies as such. I live 1.6 miles away, and in the past 19 months at my job, I have perfected the absolute quickest route, which takes about 4-5 minutes. I work at Hillcrest Family Services in a residential education facility. The program that I work with has 12 youth, ranging in age from 10-17, who live at the facility. In most instances, the children are either involved with the foster care system or with juvenille court services. My position is a counselor and case manager. So when I arrive at work, I catch up on the happenings of the previous night through the staff communication log and my email. I am sent email notificiations of significant events for kids, so if I have any of those I go back through the documentation system to figure out what happened.

At 8am, I meet with my first client. Some mornings I meet with one kid for 60 minutes and some mornings I meet with two clients for 30 minutes each. When meeting with the kids, I work with them on building social skills, communication skills, emotional regulation skills, and/or problem solving skills (obviously not all at once). The kids attend an on-campus school that begins at 8:45am. Depending on the day, from 9am until 12pm, I have any number of things to keep me busy. I have meetings with DHS workers and JCS workers (each client has a worker who is assigned to his/her case via the court system), meetings with my collegues, clinical supervision, and LOTS of paperwork. Then I meet with a kid from 12-1 or 12:30-1:30. After that, more meetings or paperwork. From 3:15-4:30, I run group with my girls (the boys go to a different group that someone else runs). I try to get out of work as soon as possible after group gets out. I shoot for 4:35 but that doesn't always happen.

I then make my short commute home as quickly as possible. When I get home, I immediately change out of my work clothes and into something more comfortable and baby-proof. Then Will and I play until dinner. Joe cooks dinner, which is awesome because he is a fantastic chef and it also allows me more time to spend with Will. At some point between 7 and 7:30, I take Will upstairs for bed. We have a little routine that we do each night and he is usally asleep by 8 or 8:30.

After Will is sleeping, I finish up some paperwork and then spend some time catching up with Joe while we do a little clean up around the house. I try to go to bed by 10pm but most nights it's more like 10:30 or 11.

4) What’s the most challenging part of your life (could be a pet peeve, a work or family issue, whatever).
Balancing work, family, and personal time.
 5) What are you likely to be doing at 8pm on a Saturday night?
Rocking a baby to sleep... or changing a dirty diaper :(

6) Paint me a picture of your life in five years.
I could possibly paint you a picture of what I would like my life to be like in five years but if I do that, I might be jinxing myself.

7) If you could be given any gift, what would it be?
An extra couple hours of sleep each night that wouldn't involve me going to bed earlier or waking up later... is that possible?

8) What part of your morning routine do you consider essential?
Besides the bathroom, I'd have to say coffee.

9) What one deceased person would you like an hour with?
My grandfather (mom's dad) who passed away in August 2009.

10) If you could go anywhere in the world on vacation, where would you guy and why? Have you been there before?
I would go to the French Riviera. I have always wanted to go there and have not yet been. I think I saw pictures of it in school when I was younger and decided that I needed to go there.

11) You have ten minutes to give a speech to college seniors. What do you talk about?
College experiences outside of the classroom are far more valuable than the lessons you learned from your courses.

12) What is your all-time favorite song?
I don't know that I have an answer for this. However, there are a few songs that never fail to make me tear up...

13) If you weren’t in your current occupation, what would you like to do?
Emergency room nurse or flight nurse

14) Tell me about your family.
My family consists of myself, my husband (Joe), and our 6 month old son (Will). We also have a dog (Molly) who is pretty much part of the family.

Then there's the immediate family I grew up with: my mom, my dad, my older sister, and my younger sister. And then I also have a very large extended family.

15) What do you “know now” that you wish you “knew then”?
You can plan as much as you want but sometimes things don't go according to plan... sometimes they are better than you planned and sometimes they are worse. In the end, I like to think it all comes out even.


  1. What an interesting person! Will is a lucky little boy...and so cute! And yes to the French Riviera...I highly recommend Antibes.

  2. a photo of William would have been nice!


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