Back to Work After Baby….13 Years Later!

OK, so that is not entirely accurate. Truth of the matter is, I have been working at the Robbinsville Branch for six years and was getting my masters online for three of them. Just recently, I became a full-time Reference Librarian.  Some of you may be thinking… “What is the big deal? She has been working for a while now.”  Point taken; however, the last two months have shown me otherwise. As hard as I tried to act like this was not going to be a big deal but just an extension of what I was already doing, I discovered acting is not my thing.

So how do you handle going back to work full time after being home to cook, clean, shop, drive carpools, attend recitals, host sleepovers, etc. etc? I have no clue, really. I have tried to figure out a schedule that works for me—still working on that. In the meantime, here are some of the things I have discovered that help me balance my home life with my new work life:


I enjoy cooking. I like to read cookbooks and magazines and look up recipes online. This full time job has definitely put a cramp in my cooking style. I have recently relied on a few books that I have gone back to more than once. One of my recent finds is Barefoot Contessa Foolproof: Recipes You Can Trust. To quote Ina Garten, the author and one of my favorite TV chefs, “Who doesn’t love that?”  Ina has this way of simplifying everything and making me feel calm. I am waiting for the day when I can smile through an entire meal prep like she does.

I have also been regularly searching for the perfect crockpot recipe, which I have yet to find. But I keep trying. Who has time to do all the prep that comes with a successful crockpot experience? This book from America’s Test Kitchen is an exception: Slow Cooker Revolution: One Test Kitchen, 30Slow Cookers, 200 Amazing Recipes.

Getting Organized

When you work full time and are trying to juggle your chores and to-do list, social media can be your friend. One of my favorite sites to get helpful tips and ideas is Pinterest. I like that I can find some site or tidbit  online, pin it to one of my boards like “Books to Read” or “For the Home” and refer back to it later (maybe…if I’m lucky).  

I find myself checking out different books to help me get organized, but right now I am having trouble squeezing in time to read them! What is great about these books, though, is that you can pick and choose chapters that are specific to your needs. I have started with one book, which has great tips on how to get through all of the clutter in your house and actually make some progress. It is called  Secrets of an Organized Mom: Fromthe Overflowing Closets to the Chaotic Play Areas: A Room-by Room Guide toDe-Cluttering and Streamlining Your Home for a Happier Family by Barbara Reich.

So acting like I have it all together may not be my thing, but I plan on using every resource available until I can win an Oscar.  When time permits, maybe on the off weekend or when the library is closed (and after my therapeutic massage and manicure), I can get to these additional sources I have on my list:

KatieWorkman’s The Mom 100 Cookbook: 100 Recipes Every Mom Needs in Her Back Pocket pretty much says it all. It is a no-nonsense, “let’s get this thing done” type of cookbook with tips on how to create a quick, tasty meal that is satisfying, and does not take hours to make.

Weight Watchers One Pot Cookbook by Weight Watchers International has 300 quick and healthy meals for the family…all in one pot. This means quick clean-up! A must in a full-time working world, or anyone’s world, in my opinion.

Buy Shoes on Wednesday and Tweet at 4:00: More of the Best Times to Buy This,Do That and Go There by Mark Di Vicenzo is a book about timing. It is filled with tips on how to get the most from your time, when to make specific purchases, travel, and be healthy.

The Other 8 Hours: Maximize Your Free Time to Create New Wealth & Purposeby Robert Pagliarini. "Most of us don't make great use of our 'non-work' hours.  This book can help you change that.  It's filled with great advice on how to devote those in-between hours to more enriching, energizing and rewarding pursuits." - Daniel H. Pink, author of A Whole New World

- Ilene Z.


  1. Love it! Congratulations on your full-time position!

  2. great blog! congrats on going your full time job!

  3. Thanks for the recommendations, I'll be looking for them at the library.
    Good luck with your new career. I'm looking forward to reading more from you, maybe something on how to act like I have it all together?

  4. Great suggestions, with a sense of humor!


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