Favorite L.A. couple and good friends, Margaux and Max Wanger, live their lives with a focus on the best of things: each other and their two babes, world travel, and lazy Sundays. We are endlessly inspired by their art, their parenting mantras, and their good hearts. We sat down with Margaux and asked her all about finding home-away-from-home (in Italy, no less!) and embracing business and parenthood with gratitude! It’s a must-read.
For our audience that may not know you, can you please share a little about your story? Let’s start with how you and Max grew a creative business and beautiful family together?
“My husband, Max, and I live in Los Angeles with our 4 year old little boy, Dash (one of the sweetest, gentlest souls you’ll ever meet) and our 6 month old baby girl, Quincy (though we all call her Rocket, the name Dash gave to her when she was born).
We met 12 years ago while working together in an entirely different, very corporate, industry. We became good friends, which led to a not-so-secret inter-office romance (we thought we were being so discrete!) and the rest is history. He is one of the most talented, creative humans I’ve ever met and I’m a bit more business savvy. A couple years into our relationship we decided to team up to start photographing weddings. Max had a vision of how it could be done differently and I had a vision for where we could go. With his sister as the bride and a friend as the groom, he took wedding photos the way he saw them in his head, and I sent them out to a handful of our favorite blogs. Within a month we were booked for the entire year. Talk about being thrown into the fire! Those first few years were a challenge to say the least. We worked hard, made mistakes, grew and somehow managed to still get married ourselves. In the past nine years we’ve created multiple businesses, traveled the world, had two children – and we’re still learning every single day.”
Now that your business runs around your sweet family, how and where do you find new inspiration?
“It’s easy to get bogged down our day to day routine, so we try to travel as much as possible. There’s nothing like going somewhere new (especially with children) to help open your eyes and see the world in a different way.”
How have your travel experiences shaped you as a family?
“Before having a baby, we were on the road more than we were home. It was exhausting, but we loved it. Then came Dash, and although it was daunting, we knew that we wanted to keep going with him by our side. He took his first flight when he was 6 weeks old and we’ve barely slowed down since (the kid is only 4 years old and has been on over 60 flights!). At one point when he was a baby, I started feeling guilty about not having a steady routine, a predictable sleep schedule and so on. I started worrying about not being home more. It was then that a dear friend and longtime teacher told me that “it doesn’t matter where you are in the world, to Dash, you and Max are home.” Her words resonated with me and I’ve tried to remember them while traveling with one and now two children. It’s not always easy, but as long as we’re together that’s all we really need.”
What is your secret(s) for globe trotting with 2 babes?
“I wish there was some magical advice that would make traveling with children easier, but my secret is really just to stop thinking and GO. I tend not to worry about what’s to come until I’m actually packing our bags. So denial, I suppose denial would be my secret. Also, when it comes to naps, bedtimes, outings, etc. we try to just go with the flow. No matter the time zone or how long we’re gone, somehow we always manage to get back to normal once we’re home. Oh, and traveling with friends and/or family helps too!”
What was a favorite moment from your recent world tour?
“There were so many favorites… watching Dash help drive a speed boat on Lake Zurich, taking a train through the beautiful Swiss countryside, warm summer nights and dinner with our closest friends (there were 15 of us!). But I think my favorite moment was during a day spent at our hotel in Como – spritzes in hand, older kids splashing around in the pool, babies sleeping on lounge chairs (which is a miracle on it’s own). After two weeks of being on the go, it was as close to relaxation as you’re going to get with kids :)”
How do you feel like your and Max’s creativity influences your motherhood/parenting?
“One of the things we both believe in, as it relates to creativity, is coloring outside the lines and following your heart. I suppose we apply some of that to the way we raise our children. Just observing the way they see the world, their curiosity, their wonder — it makes us that much more aware ourselves. More than anything we hope to nurture the things they love, allow them to be their own people and raise kind, considerate human beings.”
Where do you find the sweet spot of finding joy in your family and finding joy in your work and business?
“I’m incredibly grateful that our business allows us to spend so much time as a family. Of course we still struggle with balance, but the fact that we’re able to travel the world for work and bring our children – that is the sweet spot.”