Podcast thoughts

July 19, 2017

I’m actually sort of serious about this podcast idea.  I’m sure it’s the 834 hours I spend on the road each week, but I’ve really gotten into the medium and wonder if I have something to add.

Clearly, I’m not exactly NPR over here so it’s not like I’m thinking about creating the next This American Life.  But of all the podcasts I listen to, I have noticed several themes, especially in the ‘life hack/self-improvement’ ones:
1) These podcasts are often created by men.  And — sorry — unless said host is in charge of >50% of the home management scene, I don’t really enjoy hearing work-life-balance tips mansplained to me.  
2) When they are done by women, the women fall into two categories:
     a) Stay-at-home-moms with ‘side gig’ (The Simple Show leans that way even though the host and creator’s side gig is probably quite a big one)
     b) Entrepreneurial women with flexible jobs (Spawned, Happier)
There is a void here.  I want to hear from intelligent women who are working more typical jobs (think: set hours and locations), with kids.  I want to hear them talk about how they are doing life. 
There absolutely may be podcasts out there that I don’t know about that fit these criteria.  I actually just started listening to Happier in Hollywood and this has some of the features mentioned above, but it’s a little more niche than I had in mind.
I envision a potpourri of topics:  from the trivial (school supply shopping – I just got the list for A’s kindergarten and there are 26 very specific branded items I have to procure before August 21.  WHAT?) to bigger ones like making the most of leisure time (one of my faves, as you know) + procuring excellent childcare.  Clearly there would have to be guests (or a cohost) involved, as no one wants to hear me blather on to myself week after week . . . 
Honestly, I would love to listen to that podcast.  If it exists, please let me know!  If it doesn’t . . . would anyone else be interested in hearing one like this?  
Second, I’d love to know if anyone know how much time it takes to put one together?  My gut feeling is that the initial development would take some time, but perhaps it would be more doable after that.  I have several hours/week I could devote to it (on my day off, obvs), but probably not much more than that.  Maybe more over maternity leave (perhaps the sound of the breast pump could be my opening music.  JK).  
ANYWAY I am not sure I have the time or capability — but I do feel I have a halfway decent radio voice and a lot to say.  
the actual list of school supplies I have to somehow find and purchase.  FOR KINDERGARTEN.
just WOAH!


  • Reply leebecknell March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    I would totally listen! I’ve honestly been talking to Jason (he’s kind of techie) about how I could start one. My cousin does a podcast – it’s called Nourish and Flourish. I’ve been meaning to ask her about logistics of doing one. I’ll let you know!

  • Reply Brittany Dixon March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    I’d listen to your podcast! I just was interviewed for a podcast and she told me she spends probably 10 hours a week, but releases 2 each week. Maybe release one a week? Do it girl!!

  • Reply solitarydiner016 March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    A’s school list makes me angry! Why the need for specific brands of supplies? And what about parents who have a hard enough time affording school supplies at all, let alone the more expensive brand names? Grrrr.

  • Reply Katie March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    As someone who has a more "traditional" job schedule + long commute and wonder how in the world we will add kids into the picture with our current time away… I’d be very interested! It’s part of the reason I read your blog and Lag Liv- for a realistic perspective on the potential future. The blogger Ali on the Run launched a podcast a few months ago and she might have some insight into the time and equipment investment!

  • Reply Sophia March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    My son graduated from public K last year and his list of supplies was very similar if it’s any consolation. I think I was able to buy most stuff on amazon and everything online. I only wish I could have delivered it directly to school (or could just give cash…).

    I might be interested in a podcast though my current commute is a 10 min walk (one of the perks of doing residency in NYC) so I’m not as into them as I used to be. If I never hear another man with a stay at home partner who does everything @home tell me how to balance my life it’ll be too soon.

  • Reply Colleen March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    Also very interested in this podcast! I’m currently unemployed as my work contract as a research scientist ended 4 months after I returned from a year of parental leave 🙁 (I’m in Canada)… but I’m hoping to be back in the work force ASAP and am so interested in the topic of work-life balance. I have a 16 month old… and now we’re starting to think about adding #2… it comes up quick if you want a 2-3 year age gap!

  • Reply Lauren March 10, 2019 at 7:08 pm

    I love this idea. As a person who reads a fair amount of blogs, I’ve definitely noticed that most of the bloggers I read (and love) are stay-at-home or work-from-home moms. That is SO not my life. I work full-time outside of the home and I have four-year-old twin boys. I think one of the many reasons I enjoy your blog is because I can relate to it so much. I also have a weird desire to create a podcast, so I don’t think it’s a crazy idea at all! My problem is that I have no idea what I would talk about! I would totally listen to yours. 🙂

  • Reply TAS March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    I would love it if you did this! I find your blog refreshing and real for all of the reasons you mentioned. I don’t have kids, but I have responsibilities to family (aging parent) and the kind of job that involves very long hours and 6+ days/week. None of the voices out there giving advice (blog or podcast) speak to the realities of life with careers, commute, etc. and the energy challenges that come along with that.

  • Reply Carol March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    I love this idea and would definitely listen to your podcast. I’m an attorney who does litigation and I have a 3 year old with my second baby due in November. My husband works in NYC so a 1.5 hour long commute and is rarely the one doing pick up or drop offs. I’m always frustrated with the lack of bloggers/podcasts that I can relate to or that can give me ideas regarding how to manage this life better. Love reading your blog for this very reason. Good luck!

  • Reply Jenny March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    As someone who has a commute to a job with a fixed location and fixed hours, plus one kid and another on the way, I would absolutely listen to this.

  • Reply Jess March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    YES, I would definitely listen. This is a niche that has not been filled and needs to be!

  • Reply Lisa March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    I would listen to your podcast! Longtime reader, never take time to comment. I have an MBA from University of Chicago and by choice am now a stay-at-home mom to 2 young children. Your blog is totally fascinating to me.

  • Reply Anne March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    Parents should come together and talk to the school regarding this list and the brands. Was not like this when I was young.

  • Reply Erika March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    I completely agree that a podcast by a working (traditional-type hours) mom of small kids is an open market. If you find one, please tell us! Otherwise, start your own and I will definitely listen. The topics you mentioned are perfectly on-point…would love to hear about outsourcing and other ways of making life happen with 2 busy schedules and littles. I have a hard time relating to the advice from flex-job and stay-at-home mom blogs and podcasts. Why I enjoy yours so much!

  • Reply Ellie March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    i would totally listen to your podcast and absolutely agree that there is a void in the podcast world for ones made by and targeted for full-time working moms (i imagine b/c everyone is super swamped trying to make it all work). i’m a full-time attorney with a toddler at home and a full-time working husband and love hearing how you are making it all work.

  • Reply Natasha March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    Love the podcast idea! For my children, the school publishes a supply list so I can buy the items or there’s the option to send in a check for around $100 and the supplies are there waiting on their desks on the first day. Totally worth it even if the prices are marked up!

  • Reply ali March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    Sign me up as another listener! I don’t work FT outside the home, but do work PT in a demanding field….would happily listen to how others are managing their lives/kids/homes/etc.

    Does A’s school offer school supply packs? Some of the local schools here will let you just pay whatever amount of money and do the supply shopping for you.

  • Reply Omdg March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    I love this idea. Am happy to contribute if you ever want to talk about dual earner careers with children in residency. 🙂

  • Reply Emily March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    I would totally listen! I’m a full-time attorney with a full-time working husband and two preschoolers. Your posts about podcasts actually were one of the things that originally got me to check out podcasts (Serial and Happier with Gretchen Rubin were the first podcasts I listened to, and I also listened to Invisibilia on your rec). Now I listen to a lot of podcasts, mostly more tending toward politics or investigative reporting podcasts but I would definitely be interested in a life-hack-type podcasts for working moms with demanding jobs and small children, since I agree that seems like an under-podcasted (and even under-blogged) genre. I echo the commenter above that your blog and LagLiv’s are my favorites for those types of blogs 🙂

    By the way, not about life hacks or work/family issues specifically, but do you listen to Anna Sale’s Death Sex and Money podcast? Interviews with people, both famous and ordinary, loosely organized around those three topics. I think you’d really like it.

  • Reply Kristen March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    I would 100% listen! I love your blog because you are one of the few out there who has a full time job and blogs and has kids and it’s refreshing to see someone who’s life is more like mine (no doctoring here – just librarianing!) so it’d be great to hear from others who are in the same boat!

  • Reply beth March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    I know at our school all school supplies are pooled by classroom (ie you don’t get the exact ones you buy). They ask for specific brands so that all of the kids have identical supplies. There is also some coverage of classroom common materials suggested (tissues, hand sanitizer and extra snacks). Anyone who is on free or reduced school lunch does not have to buy school supplies. The PTA provides them as an identical set to what other students bring. School supplies are dropped off in a bin in front of the classroom so that it is not as obvious which children cannot afford supplies. The teachers then divvy up the identical supplies as needed.

    There are definitely pros and cons to doing it this way and I know it annoys a lot of people in the district I belong to as well. Just thought I’d provide as possible explanation of the very specific list. While no system is perfect, I do respect that the school we belong to is trying to make sure that school supplies are evenly distributed. Of course, anyone else is entitled to feel differently.

  • Reply Katie March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    Our school supply lost is similar. Like Beth mentioned, the lower grades share supplies. I do think it’s a bit silly that the markers have to be Crayola vs. Target’s Up brand. I waited until the last minute two years ago and Target was OUT of the brand name stuff. Ugh. So don’t wait too long unless you are shopping online with fast shipping.

    I haven’t listened to podcasts (my commute is by train and I share it with my spouse so it’s our catchup time) but may want to replace some mindless phone time with podcasts.

  • Reply Sara March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    I would listen to your podcast! You should check out The Girl Next Door and Friendlier podcasts. In particular, The Girl Next Door is hosted by one full time working mom and one stay at home mom.

  • Reply Sara B. March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    I’d listen! I’d even consider being your co-host, although I’m not sure that another physician /toddler mommy / runner /planner nerd/Floridian would expand your audience that much. But if there’s a niche there, I’m in!

  • Reply Sarah March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    I would definitely listen to your podcast too 🙂 I imagine that it would involve a lot of behind the scenes editing etc which could become time consuming!

  • Reply Megan March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    To the podcast- YES. Would love to listen to this.

    To the school supply list- this won’t help you now, but perhaps an idea to spread or spearhead for future years? Our elementary school’s PTA gets the list early from teachers, finds places to bulk order each of the items, divides out the cost and offers parents a "pay $75 and we’ll deliver it right to the classroom when the classroom needs it" option. Bingo – NO work for parents, and teachers don’t have to start the year with 800 boxes of crayons in the way, or (heaven forbid) a handful of kids who bought the "wrong" brand of crayons.


  • Reply lapetitelumiere March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    Yes, please do this! I am also a huge podcast fan and feel the working-out-of-the-house mom demographic is significantly underrepresented. My husband and I both work full-time and have a toddler. I have a long commute, he travels for work fairly often, and it is just…a lot. In a good, life-fulfilling way! But…you know. There aren’t a lot of podcasters who speak to this.

    We are not to the school supply stage, but aaaaaahhh! This sounds like exactly what you want to be doing in your undoubtedly limitless free time… 😉

  • Reply emilymargaretnyc March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    I would love to hear a podcast by you. I just recently got really into "Happier" and am listening to it from the beginning, but am looking forward to starting "Happier in Hollywood."

    Also that school supply list looks insane — but I guess a lot of the items are for the entire class/teacher so she/he doesn’t have to bear the burden of buying all that for her/his own class? I really feel for teachers as one of my best friends from high school teaches high school math/CS, but man.

  • Reply SusannahEarlyBd March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    Love this idea, Sarah! You have a great radio voice!

  • Reply Holly March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    I would totally listen!!! I’m a bit younger than you (30) but have followed you FOREVER (since the med school days!) and have always appreciated that you’re just a few steps ahead of me in life–I’ve learned so much from you over the years! And we’re working on planning for the next kid phase but are currently like HOW are we going to do this with our jobs, commutes, existing social/fun/workouts, etc. I listen to a ton of podcasts and I’d LOVE one that focuses more on the logistics of being a working mom with a traditional, demanding job.

  • Reply Lily March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    Does anyone have any suggestions for a good morning podcast? I was looking for something short (maybe 15 mins), and kinda calm and inspiring to listen to before getting out of bed. Maybe a short reading of something inspiring, a quote of the day, some productivity tips and then some upbeat music…
    While you’re at it, maybe you could make this one too please Sarah?

  • Reply vote March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    When Ms. DeVoss gets her voucher program in place and the same amount of taxpayer money is shared not only to public schools but also to home schools and exclusive private schools the ‘school supply list’ will become much longer and more expensive because public schools will have FAR less money to spend on such things as books etc. This is what the nation voted for after all.

  • Reply Jenn March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    Yes! Your blog is my favourite of all time and I’m about to go from a ten minute commute to an hour each way…will be needing podcasts…!

  • Reply KaiT March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    I second "Girl Next Door" podcast. They are a great example of what it sounds like you are looking for, but I’d also love to add a new podcast to the rotation if you decide to start your own 🙂

  • Reply Katy March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    Yes, yes, yes to The Shubox podcast! I am a longtime listener and fan as well as a full time Oil & Gas accountant with a 5 year old daughter entering Kindergarten and a 10 month old son. I’d love to hear your perspective on all the issues surrounding life as a working mom as well as any potential guests. Let’s make this happen :). Let me know if I can help!

  • Reply Emma March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    I’d totally be interested. I’d also recommend The Productive Woman podcast–while her guests do skew towards the flexible schedules, she has a much greater diversity than the other podcasts I’ve found. In theory my job is flexible (I’m a professor) but my daycare hours are not, so it is a challenge.

  • Reply Emily March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    I’d definitely listen to your podcast! Is this just a labor of love for you and a creative outlet, or do you think there is any significant financial compensation to be had in the world of podcasting? I have no idea, just asking! Perhaps you could find a like-minded co-host. I always like the banter of co-hosts in podcasts and it would help divide the work load.

  • Reply Mary Beth March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    I would listen! I have been reading your blog since I was a pre-med undergrad! I am applying for PEM fellowship and my husband (a surgeon) and I are trying to figure out how we will ever be able to handle kids on top of our work schedules!!

  • Reply Jaimie March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    I would absolutely listen to this podcast. I listen to a lesser known podcast called Friendlier where they cover these topics BUT they are stay at home moms, so I have a hard time relating to some of their conversations because I’m not a stay at home mom, nor do I ever intend to be.

    If you are looking for a co-host, sign me up (lawyer, owns my own law firm, two kids, midwesterner). I have a deep love of podcasts and have always wanted to do one. This one sounds right up my alley.

  • Reply Sara March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    I’d love to listen to a podcast about balancing life/family with a more traditional job. I am constantly going back and forth between being a little jealous of both my peers who have more important/higher earning jobs than I do, as well as being jealous of the SAHMs in my group of friends. No option is perfect for sure, but overall, I am reasonably happy with being somewhere in the middle (mostly by design!) There are infinite options out there for making things work and I think it’s a fun topic for discussion – and much needed!

  • Reply Lou M March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    I’d definitely be interested, as like your blog it’d be so relevant and interesting to me to me (uk based currently sole Earner/full time emergency medicine consultant and mum to 2 under 5, and ibrun a bit). 1st time I’ve commented – I love your blog! The similarities and the differences between our lives uk/us are fascinating to me. I commute 1.5 hours – try to listen to med ed stuff on way to work and something fun on the way home. I love Brooke mcalary’s slow home podcast (Australian) but something aimed at those who cannot do (much) work from home would be great.

    But, do you seriously have the time? I imagine 5-7 hours/week once you’ve got it organised. Unless you made it monthly? I’m so impressed by how much you clearly already get done.

    Can’t believe that kindergarten list. I thought things were getting bad in terms of state funded education/healthcare in the UK but all I have to get my 5 year old for reception is clothing – a vague uniform – oh and the free school dinner for under 7’s is probably going even though there’s evidence of it giving kids better nutrition than any time since post WW2 rationing!!

  • Reply Angela March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm


    one of the things I love about your blog is you are an out of the home working parent. I was scouring people in my life and on the internet to see how others do it and get tips for how to survive, and know I wasn’t alone in my big feelings and struggles. I started reading before you had kids, and have been ecstatic that you continue.
    I have considered starting my own blog just really for myself, but I am so intimidated to do it ( self imposed fear) but your blog itself means so much to me. A podcast would be amazing too…
    Oh, I do listen to Mom’s with Dreams podcast with Erica Blocker, the creator is amazing I guess her job is work from home/flexible but she previously went back to school AND her guests are women in all kinds of careers. I highly recommend it. Vibrant Happy Women podcast also has many guests with a wide range of careers and families ( most are work from home entrepreneurs, but not all – she did just interview Tsh Oxenreider).

  • Reply Laura March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    I would absolutely listen to a podcast like that!

    On another note, my daughter’s school made supply shopping easy by having a company put together kits that you can buy with all the correct supplies. They deliver it to your house and the price is pretty comparable to what you would pay retail. Maybe you can suggest this to your kids school? The company we use is http://www.edukitinc.com but I’m sure there are lots of options.

  • Reply Aly March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    If you and Lag Liv co-hosted the podcast together, it would be a hoot! 🙂

  • Reply Colleen March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    Long time reader, podcast addict, infrequent commenter. PLEASE DO THE PODCAST. And you HAVE TO INCLUDE THE BREAST PUMP in the music somehow (genius!!!). I’m a full-time working mom in a "normal" job with a 3 year old and 8 month old and TOTALLY feel this niche is missing. Not sure that I have that much to add (well except STRONG thoughts on the middle class societal pressure to breast feed and how ridiculous this is while working full time at a "normal" job), but I’d gladly be a guest. And I completely second the comments about incorporating Lag Liv – also genius.

    I do wonder if this niche isn’t filled, though, b/c not many moms have time? I too have no clue how much of a time commitment this would be for you. But I LOVE the idea!!

    And ugh on school supplies. I’m so not ready for that next stage (even though I can’t wait to not be paying the second mortgage that is daycare) of school supplies and before /after/summer childcare!!

  • Reply Monica March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    Most of those brands are fairly common and usually can be found easily at Staples or similar. I would suggest buying extras. I buy doubles of a lot of things especially the comp books, folders & glue. These things are frequently used up by Christmas and then cost a fortune to buy in January. i.e. I can buy comp books before school at a 2-pack for $1-2, in January that same book is $3-$4 each. If they end up not needing it then I already have it for next year. I do this with crayons and markers as well and pencils. My kids were in a school with varied socioeconomic backgrounds so I always bought a lot of extras and sent them in later when supplies were getting low in the winter & spring.

    I love the idea of a podcast. You have some great insight and I agree a lot of commentary comes from one end or the other of the job/flexiblility spectrum. Start with something simple, it doesn’t need to be long. Two of my favorites are Note to Self & Planet Money, both frequently around 15-20 minutes.

  • Reply kindbirds March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    Adding to the chorus of you and Rebecca doing one together. : ) Would totally listen to that!

  • Reply Brittnie March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    Sign me up as a listener!

    I’ve heard it takes more time than one would think to produce a show (editing the show I’ve heard is the most time consuming), but you could make it work for you! Wouldn’t have to publish a new podcast weekly, but maybe every other?

  • Reply Brittnie March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    And I think you would gain more interest that just the women in your same situation. Ex: me! I’m a stay at home mom with several writing (volunteer) side gigs, but I find your roles fascinating and would love to learn more from your everyday life experiences.

  • Reply Lindsey March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    Love this idea. And may want to start my own, motivated by the fact that I’m bothered that so many women are leaving law firms, Edith I attribute to work life balance.

  • Reply Brenda March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    The podcast is a great idea. I have a small suggestion: if you do get a co-host, try to make it someone with a middle-income job (i.e. teacher, nurse, secretary). That way your listeners will be able to relate income-wise to either you or your cohost.

  • Reply Debra March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    Wow, I have taught Kindergarten for 37 years, that is quite a list. It seems like it would be fairly expensive for many families, especially if they have more than one student. Yes to the Podcast!

  • Reply Lisa March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    I am super late to this party, but just wanted to say I really hope you make this podcast! I would definitely listen. I have searched high and low for full (or mostly full) time working outside the home mom bloggers, and the pickings are slim. I’ll echo other commenters, you and Lag Liv are my absolute favorites. You’re so real and relatable! I really look up to you both. I’m 32, work full time outside the home (in a very good but inflexible job, sigh) as an engineer. I also have 3 kids (ages 5.5, almost 4, and 1.5). My 5 year old is starting kindergarten in September, so I am right there with you on the school supplies for A. Thanks for writing, and I hope to hear your podcast soon 🙂

  • Reply saroy March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    I’m late to this post but OMG YES I want this podcast. I’m a professional engineer working a full-time job, taking care of my little kids, trying to fit in time for my creative pursuits like quilting and blogging, and finding time to spend with my husband too.

    I get the feeling we probably listen to a lot of similar podcasts, and while I enjoy them, I also find myself not really seeing eye-to-eye on a lot of them for the reasons you’ve mentioned. In particular, the stay-at-home-mom-with-a-job gets to me. I understand that some of these jobs are significant, and even admit to a bit of envy on my part, but they overwhelmingly have a lot of flexibility that people working office jobs or similar don’t have. They also tend to give some serious side eye to traditional child care arrangements like full-day daycare/preschool, which gets my hackles up. (Also, soooo many of these podcasters are like "I’m able to fit in my work while my kid naps!" and come on, that doesn’t work for most typical jobs.)

    • Reply saroy March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

      Oh, and if you do this, sign me up to be a guest! 🙂

  • Reply Sarah March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

    If you are thinking about it you should do into the archives of the Girl Next Door Podcast as they had an episode all about how they create their podcast. That, plus reaching out to other podcasters (including Kelsey) helped me get started. I’d love to listen to yours!

    • Reply theSHUbox March 10, 2019 at 7:09 pm

      Sarah, I am currently obsessed with Girl Next Door as I really like their style! I also recently found Kelsey’s blog and man, there are definitely some parallels there (fellow Upholder and our kids are very close in age!). I am definitely going to contact her. Also, I am checking out your podcast 🙂 Just downloaded 2 episodes! Looking for lots of inspiration 🙂 🙂 Thank you for your comment!!

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