Jamie Ratner - Working Mom Spotlight

Jamie Ratner was a working mom of two, heading up security at a DC Law Firm when she “gave birth” to a great new idea. Already a popular parent resource blog author, and expert deal finder, she began to notice that -though there were great deals to be had all over the place- the bulk of deals on daily deal sites were for things like spa treatments and five star eateries, places it’s hard to have your toddler tag along to. She knew parents needed something more. The idea – literally hatched at the Ratner family’s kitchen table – was to build a resource for families that brought them unbeatable deals on the things they wanted as well as the stuff every family needs. That idea became Certifikid (cer-tif-a-kid). Now the leading family focused deal site in the DC metro, CertifKid has expanded to five states, opened the first ever site dedicated to Special Needs families and landed Jamie a spot on the Washington Business Journal’s, “Top 40 Business Leaders Under 40” list.    

Over the years, how have you learned to balance career and motherhood?
At first I was trying to do it all. I wanted my daughter to be home with me all day and I would work around her. I learned that just does not work. The best way to actually balance things is to be able to fully focus on each portion separately. Therefore, I send my kids to school all day so I can work hard all day and then pick them up in the afternoon and focus completely on them. When they go to bed,  I go back to doing the work. Not much time for fun and myself, but I figure I will have plenty of time for that down the line. Plus, I had plenty of time prior to kids to just enjoy myself. Now my passion is  my kids and career. I feel that tradeoffs are a form of balance too.

Is there one particular parenting lesson you’ve learned about raising kids?
Stand your ground. Once you let give in, let guard down. even once on an issue you lose the high ground. For example, if say, “Oh, I’ll let them watch TV in bed, just this once.” it’s over. They win and they will expect you to give in again and again.

Battling stress? Any advice?
RUN! Exercise is the best way to keep sane!

Tools or products you can’t live without?
I have a very functional dependency on my Blackberry, can’t live without it, without a doubt. That and  Starbucks Frappuccino. Funny, I used to shake my head at people who said that and would pay $5 for a coffee. Now I’m one of those people and I “get” it!

Do you have an inspirational quote, motto or philosophy you can share with us?
For me it is a song by -of all people- Mylie Cyrus; The Climb. The words speak to me on so many levels:
“ I can almost see it. That dream I’m dreaming, but There’s a voice inside my head saying
You’ll never reach it. Every step I’m takin’. Every move I make. Feels lost with no direction,
My faith is shakin’ But I gotta keep tryin’ Gotta keep my head held high…

There’s always gonna be another mountain. I’m always gonna wanna make it move Always gonna be an uphill battle Sometimes I’m gonna have to lose. Ain’t about how fast I get there. Ain’t about what’s waitin’ on the other side It’s the climb! 

The struggles I’m facing. The chances I’m taking. Sometimes might knock me down, but
No I’m not breaking. I may not know it, but these are the moments that I’m gonna remember most
I’ve just gotta keep goin’, and I gotta be strong….”

Favorite resources, books, or website?
For parenting – “The Blessing of the Skinned Knee” – I always refer back to it when I need to put  everything in perspective with the kids. It is a great teaching tool, there to remind you that it is okay  to not  be “perfect” and that your kids are the perfectly the people they are if not “perfect”. Really, what is “perfect” anyway?

Latest passion?
My latest passion is our new Special Needs program; Special Deals for Special Needs. I have learned so much about the Special Needs community, the amazing way that families come together, learn and grow around a child with special needs.

Connect with her:

Twitter: @certifikid
Website: Certifikid.com

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