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James Kicinski-McCoy is mom to Julian, Milla Plum, Birdie and Sailor, lives her days surrounded by her family, working from her Nashville home office and creating and editing beautiful content on Bleubird (@bleubird) and Mother (mothermag.com). She lives by the mantra “it will all work out” and is the kind of friend we (and thousands of readers) turn to for beauty fixes and real parenting advice…and lots of in-between. James sits down to answer all of our questions and now we’re loving her even more.

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How do you start your day? Will you share your morning routine?
I typically wake up around 8 am. My husband, Aubrey, brings me coffee in bed (I love almond milk lattes). We get the kids ready for school and see them off. Most days I like to go for a 30 minute run before starting work. This isn’t always in the cards, but it definitely helps jump start my day. I work from home most days with my team, juggling several businesses and being a mom of four. I usually have a late breakfast around 11, and spend the rest of my workday in meetings, answering emails, and on set at photo shoots.

Do you live by a favorite mantra?
“It will all work out.”

Where do you go for your best inspiration?
Honestly some of my best ideas have been while in the shower. Haha. Music is also extremely inspiring.

Please share your favorite beauty fix. Describe your everyday look/outfit?
Most days I throw on my favorite jeans and vintage t-shirt or sweater when it’s cold. As for my beauty routine, I keep it simple most days with Dr. Jart’s BB Beauty Cream, the Anastasia Brow Wiz, Onomie Bright Concealing Elixir, Elizabeth Mott Volumizing Mascara, Tata Harper Cheek Tint, and the Omorovicza Perfecting Lip Balm.

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What does a typical mother/child outing look like for you?
My big kids and I eat at our favorite Korean restaurant once a week, just the three of us. On the weekends, the whole family tries to get outside for some fresh air. We usually grab brunch and hit up the farmers’ market, flea market, or park.

How do you pamper yourself (when you’re lucky)?
90 minute massages at Escape day spa.

Do you have a favorite family meal?
My house is full of picky eaters, but everyone loves Mexican food so we usually settle on tacos.

What family traditions have carried over from your own childhood?
I don’t really have any from my own childhood, but I’ve enjoyed creating my own family traditions. For example, every Friday after school we take our kids to get a “Friday treat”, whether it is donuts or ice cream, to celebrate the weekend.

What part of motherhood brings you the most joy?
Watching my children grow and become their own strong individuals.

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Which part of the life/motherhood/work balance do you do best? Which part do you “let go”?
I am really good at unplugging at nighttime and on the weekends to spend uninterrupted time with my husband and kids.

Do you have favorite parenting advice/helps for new mom friends?
Speak to your children, as you would like to be spoken to.

What, more than anything, do you want to pass on to [your child]?
I want them to know that they create their own happiness, and nothing or no one else can do that for them.

What’s your favorite parenting phase? Which is the most challenging?
Definitely the teenage phase. Luckily I have two incredible young adults who make my role as their mother easy. Don’t be scared! The most challenging is ages 3-6, when kids test limits, tell you no, and develop selective hearing.

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Tell us your “must have” parenting product.
Definitely a sound machine (white noise) in the little kids’ room so they can sleep through the night undisturbed.

What is your biggest life accomplishment so far?
Other than raising four incredible little humans, I am most proud of Mother (mothermag.com), a hip parenting site I co-founded and edit.

I can’t start my day without…
Coffee

My happy place is…
At home

I am most proud of…
My smart, funny, and self-determined kids

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December 11th 2015

James, where is Milla’s shirt from in that first couch photo? I’ve seen it one other photo and have been dying to find it.