Featuring: Carla Birnberg

I have so much to learn from this woman and luckily she has a blog to tell me everything that I need to know about health and fitness. She is accomplished, in great shape and a dedicated mama to a beautiful little girl. Let’s read more about her!

Occupation: writer, wife & babymama
Age: 38
Number of Children: one
Current Projects: yes :) I’ve somehow filled my plate full while really only wanting to stay home and dance to Yo Gabba Gabba with my Toddler Tornado—and I’m enjoying every minute of it all.
I write for the Austin American Statesman’s Newspapers in Education, I’m a columnist for Austin’s fantabulous Good Life Magazine, I’m a monthly column writer for a national diet company’s newsletter (not allowed to reveal myself. oooh, exciting I realize) and I’m MizFit: Fearless Leader of the Bumbling Band O'(fitness) MizFits.

Where are you from? If you’re not from Austin, how did you end up here?

From Pittsburgh Pennsylvania and came to austin for my husband’s job. That said, we visited for 6 weeks one summer and I fell in love. Because I married so well he actually deferred to me in making the choice between two cities (I know. Im lucky) and I selected austin without a moments hesitation.
What are some challenges that you face when trying to juggle a career and family?

Being present. not so much with my husband as when he gets home from work I cease writing—-but with my daughter. I vowed that if I kept working I’d never let it interfere with our time together and DANG that has been difficult at times. Not so much the not working while she’s awake (I challenge any mom/dad to look at their child’s little face when (s)he’s patting the place next to her and inviting you into her world and not sit right down.) but focusing on not being with her with the backdrop of I HAVE SO MANY LOOMING DEADLINES.
I struggle with this daily and some days I’m more victorious than others.

How do you manage to write and stay on deadline while taking care of your daughter?

I just do. I’ve never missed a deadline and I’m not starting now. She’s an early riser no napper (up at 5:00 straight through until 6) so I’ll often be working at 4 am. (I know it sounds so great that we have our evenings but when you know there’s gonna be a MOMMMMYYYYYYY!! coming at 5 am your evening time is pretty brief :))

What serves as your inspiration in life?

Im so blessed. Beyond. I constantly remark to my husband that I can not believe this is my life. I’m sure many might look at it and think: really?! You cant believe *that’s* your life? huh. it’s fine I guess.
but I’m blessed in immeasurable ways and just want to be grateful/give back in any way I can.

Tell us one of your secret indulgences.

TRASHY NOVEL AND A BIG A** BOWL OF POPCORN AND NO ONE HOME. (when might that be happening?)

If you were portrayed in a movie, who would play your character?

Id like to think Julia Louis Dreyfus. she makes me LAUGH.

What would your theme song be?

HMMM, I’m not too too much of a music person. This week? Twinkle Twinkle sung using only the word ZEBRA because it makes my toddler GIGGLE.

If you had the power, what would you change in the world?

Really? Nothing. I know I should say all the wrongs etc which I/we are all working to change—-but isnt that a piece of the journey? the process.
AdvertisementWhat about Austin would you change?

Lower the summer temp by 5 degrees DAILY.

What is your best childhood memory?

Best? I cant even say. looking back it was the tiny things (my dad getting home from work every night at 5:30 and our having a family dinner every night).

If you had a million dollars, how would you spend it?

I’d hire a babysitter and get a PEDICURE, pay for my daughter’s college education, invest some and then launch CARLA’S BIG GIVE and see what other people might do!

What’s your dream vacation?

Right now? A VACATION. :) I’d love to take a year long cruise around the world

Who is your greatest influence?

As a writer– Anne Lamott. As a person? Too many to list.

What has been the toughest challenge in your career as mommy?

Our daughter is from Guatemala. When she was six months old I moved to Guatemala (new mommy. no spanish. no hubby) and lived there with her until she was 10 months old and we could bring her home.
What is the one thing that you want your child to know before leaving home?

The most important thing in life is to be UNABASHEDLY yourself. comfortable in your own skin. everything else will fall into place if that’s true.

What’s your favorite band and movie?

Band? It’s so NOT Austin but I dont think I have one. I love the Hip Hop. Movie? Love so many and it depends on genre. Serious movie? The Shawshank Redemption.

When did you decide to start blogging?

Years ago I was a blogger for hire…2000? Emphasis on the hire part in the decision making.

How have you balanced having a career and being a mom?

Well I hope :) the bottom line for me (as our daughter is 2. this will shift I’m sure when she’s in school) is that HER NEEDS come first right now. I can get up early to write (thank goodness) or work late if need be——but right now she really is my priority.

What’s your favorite part of being a mom?

I love it all. My daughter is such a spunky feisty pistol just being with her and getting to experience the small stuff (her first time flying a kite…her first giggle) is the best part.

Catherine Prystup
About Catherine Prystup 2157 Articles
Catherine Prystup founded LiveMom.com out of a desire to build a better community for Austin-area moms. She has three children, ages seventeen, eight and three years old.

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