Because every business is different, and so are the people running them, I can only draw on my own experiences.
I have two jobs, one with varying amounts of work in the daytime, and a delivery job a few nights a week. My wife works almost full-time in the daytime and has several side projects in the evenings and weekends including her own small business (From The Stash), this blog, and other freelance jobs.
That doesn’t leave tons of time for the baby, who, depending on mommy’s and daddy’s work schedules, spends her days at the sitter .
At night, when mommy needs to work, the baby is all dad’s from dinner to bedtime. The same can be said when daddy is out on deliveries; baby spends her nights with mommy.
It’s a delicate balance most nights. Sometimes the baby is a daddy’s girl and is content to play, eat and have fun with daddy. Other nights, all she wants is her mother. Where it gets even more tricky is the nights when we’re both home and one of us is trying to work, or get stuff done around the house (still haven’t found the fairy who cooks, cleans and does all the laundry for me while I’m at work during the day), but the baby just wants that parent.
As my wife and I can both attest, it can be quite frustrating.
I try my best to keep the baby out of the wife’s hair when she’s trying to work. In the summer, that meant taking her for stroller trips to walk the dog or short trips to the park. In the winter, even in southern Ontario, most days I find it too cold to take her for walks by the time I get home from work. The dog gets her time (sometimes) but stroller + baby + winter = not happening most days.
So, when there is A LOT of work dear wife needs to complete, I tend to pack up the baby and we make a trip into town to Wal-Mart, the grocery store, or a fast-food restaurant, to minimize noise and distractions at home.
I don’t know if this is the best approach, but it’s one of the few ways I’ve found to be supportive and help dear wife get her work done without being directly involved.
Can any one offer me other suggestions or tips from your partners about how they support you and your business?