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Holly Mason

Holly Mason is mom to toddler Mia and owner of MasonBaronet, a 14-person marketing firm based in Dallas. When she’s not volunteering for the Make-A-Wish Foundation, she and her husband, Jay, are lovingly restoring their East Dallas home.

6:30am Alarm goes off. Hit snooze. We’re staying with my husband’s parents in Rockwall while our house is under construction. Mia is sleeping on a mattress next to us on the floor. Despite being in a full-size bed (we’re used to our king), we both slept well. It may have to do with the fact I just returned from a three-day business trip and got in around midnight the night before.

6:45am My husband, Jay, asks whether he should take a shower first. I quickly agree, convincing myself I deserve to sleep a little longer and get to work late since I worked such long hours the few days prior.

7am Shower and get ready.

7:30am Go to get Mia up, and she’s not in bed. I’m relieved briefly, but then find her asleep on the couch. I pat her back and give her the warning that I’ll be back to get her dressed.

7:45am Mia is still asleep on couch. I attempt to get her dressed. She’s not helping, so I offer to let her sleep in the car in her pjs and get dressed at school.

7:55am Grab Mia’s clothes, breakfast and my workbag. While putting her in car seat, I realize she didn’t brush her teeth. I decide we can do that at school, too.

8am Both my daughter’s school and my office are located downtown. We live in East Dallas, so I’m unsure what the traffic will be like getting there from my in-laws’ house in Rockwall. My first appointment isn’t until 9:30. Surely it won’t take more than an hour and a half! Luckily there’s an HOV lane, and, with Mia in the car, we take advantage and zoom past all the cars at a stand still.

8:15am Mia is enjoying her breakfast in the car (apples, graham crackers and juice). I warn her when we get to school she’ll need to hurry up and get dressed in the car so her friends won’t see her in her jammies. Of course, I’m really more concerned about getting to work on time, but know this tactic will ensure she doesn’t stall.

8:55am It works! Mia quickly puts on her tights and dress. She insists she can get herself dressed and doesn’t want any help from mommy, so I watch her struggle. We then pull her hair in a ponytail and spray it with a little product. I decide this may not be a bad routine – dressing in the car! She was much faster, and she’s not as easily distracted.

9am Run Mia in to school and pay her monthly check for Kinder Fit. I had to track down a teacher to find out how much and who to write the check to. She’s involved in dance, drama, soccer, cheerleading and Kinder Fit — all through school. Each activity has a different tuition amount and payment due date which makes it really challenging to keep up with.

9:15am Get to office and quickly prepare for staff meeting. Grab a cup of coffee and head to conference room.

9:30am Staff meeting lasts for 45 minutes. I give an update on new business, a consultant coming in and we preview all the work created over the last month. Watching the presentation makes me very proud of my team and the work we’ve done.

10:30am Work on finalizing presentation for a 2:30 meeting. We’re debriefing on an event we helped with the previous week in NYC. I send a copy to my team for review and head to lunch appointment.

12pm Walking toward car I realize it is a mess — toys everywhere along with half my closet since we’ve temporarily moved out of our house while remodeling. I throw everything in the back and pull the screen over to conceal it all; then head toward my clients’ office to pick them up.

1:30pm Back from lunch; have an e-mail from my creative director with some suggestions to presentation that I quickly make before our 2:30 meeting.

2:30pm Presentation with client. It was long, but really good. Everyone seemed engaged and appeared to be having some laughs, too.

5pm Back at my desk. I read a couple of e-mails from my husband, confirming whether he needs to pick up Mia or whether I will. I write back that I can get her. He decides to work out, and we’ll meet at his parent’s for dinner.

5:50pm Pick up Mia from school. Collect her art, teacher notes, and other fliers with announcements and reminders. Mia is excited to see me and shows the stamp she got at music class today.

6:15pm Finally in car and ready to go. I’m always surprised at how difficult it is for parents to get their kids to leave school. You’d think they’d be ready to go, but instead Mia likes playing with friends out in the courtyard. I catch up with some parents while Mia plays. I guess that’s a good sign that they enjoy school.

7pm Back at my in-laws. Mia wants to ride her bike while waiting for dinner to be ready. Some of the benefits of staying with our parents are the home cooked meals and the additional help with Mia. I’m actually feeling a little spoiled.

7:05pm Mia decides to ride her bike outside with Nona and Grandad. I take advantage of the time to finish up a marketing plan. Right after dragging out my computer and files, I hear Mia crying. I jump up and run to see what happened. Nona has pinched her neck in her helmet. I rub her skin and give her kisses and assure her she’ll be alright and it was just an accident. Jay’s mom of course feels awful, but I have done this too with her in the car seat. I’m relieved she hasn’t fallen off her bike and seriously injured herself. After she’s calmed down and back on her bike, I go back in to work a little longer.

7:30pm Dinner. Mia decides she wants to say the prayer. She insists on everyone putting their hands together rather than holding hands (this is how they do it at school). She thanks God for the moon, sun and baby Jesus. We all try not to laugh.

8pm Drag Mia into bath. She agrees once I tell her she doesn’t have to wash her hair tonight.

8:15pm Mia still in bath — talking, singing and playing the entire time. Now I can’t get her out of the bath! I tell her we won’t have time for books or to play for a little while if she doesn’t get out.

8:30pm Jammies on, teeth brushed, and the child is still active as ever. Try to get her to calm down by putting in a movie and lying down.

9pm Warn Mia that the movie is about to be turned off. Of course she starts negotiating with me immediately.

9:30pm Read a couple of books and agree to lay down with Mia to get her asleep.

10pm I think she’s FINALLY asleep! Now time for me to get clothes out for tomorrow, check e-mail one last time and get ready for bed.

10:30pm Get in bed with a book to unwind.

11pm Turn lights off and go to sleep.