Maria Varallo commented on an article I posted on my Work from Home Wisdom Facebook page about hell being working from home with your husband! Both Maria and her husband Kris Semple work from home, and I asked her how it works out for them:
What do you and Kris do?
I’m a coach and trainer. Kris is employed as a database administrator for a large American contract research organisation with offices around the world.
Do you have a family?
We have two boys aged 11 and 12, an old fluffy cat, a very fast young dog and two rats called Rex and Shadow.
How long have you been working from home with your husband?
5 years since going self-employed. I work in the house with the dog Flash for company.
Kris – 6 years employed, working in the office in the garden.
What’s your daily routine?
It depends on my work load, I have at times got up at 6am to get an hour in before everyone else gets up. Otherwise we’re up at 7, kids to school. I usually take the youngest to school however Kris will do this if I’m working out of the house. More of a juggle for pick up at 3.15 if I can’t do it, Kris will try and if he’s not able then I ask other mums like anyone else.
If I’m at my desk Kris will make a great coffee before we both get on with work. Over coffee or dog walking we talk through the day/week plans i.e. who is doing what and where.
I try to do the dog walk daily if possible as it’s sixty minutes of fast walking which is so good for me and clears my head. When boys are back from school and snacks eaten, I encourage them to do an hours of homework or if it’s done they can get on a computer, this frees me up to do another hour until dinner.
If I have a lot on I will go back to my desk for an hour at 9pm. I can never work late my mind goes I’d rather get up at the crack of dawn in a quiet peaceful house with a cup of tea and get on.
Now the boys are getting older it’s getting easier in school holidays as they know Kris is down the garden. So it’s not so desperate to find child care.
Most of Maria’s work is for Illuminate, a charity she helped start three years ago in Cambridge. She also coaches private clients, and designs and delivers workshops for other organisations.
Maria will be back soon talking about how she and Kris divide up domestic responsibilities and whether working from home affects their relationship.