Photo By Hillary Ehlen
Carrie and Jesse Feigum are high-school sweethearts, together for 21 years and married now for almost 13 years. Jesse is one of the owners of local-favorite, Drekker Brewing Company and Carrie stays at their Moorhead home with their four boys; Jonah (11), Seth (9), Henry (5) and Benjamin (3).
What are some tips for surviving a work/life balance?
I’ve been fortunate enough to spend the majority of my time as a parent staying home with my kids, which poses its own survival needs. That being said, I’ve always found that planning ahead will save the day. So, if I know it’s going to be a long work day/week, I’ll make sure to have things prepared or on hand for quick meals and snacks. It seems overly simple, but for my boys, having a good snack will solve ALMOST anything. Of course, having a supportive partner is helpful, we back each other up!
What’s one piece of advice you wish you would have received being a parent?
Advice is a funny thing. You can get the very best advice prior to becoming a parent and then, when you’re in the thick of it, the advice goes out the window and you just have to figure it out. Every child is different and it’s not a one size fits all type of situation. So I guess my answer would be, just relax. You will figure it out. You will figure out what works best for that baby/child and your family. Relax and take lots of pictures and video!
Favorite way to get energy (of you and/or your child) out?
We go to the park or just go outside. We moved last June and we live in a wonderful neighborhood across from the river. So we go exploring a lot, walking down along the river, looking for animals and just enjoying outside! There have been times where I have taken advantage of the open gym times at TNT Fitness, too. Skyzone is a great option for us as well, now that all of our kids are able to have fun jumping.
What are your favorite ways to take care of yourself?
Jesse and I have always been really good at having date nights. Obviously, it has gotten harder with the number of kids we’ve had. But it is still really important, so we do it as much as we can. We are lucky to be from the area so both of our parents are close by and they help us out often. If we don’t have the opportunity to get away without the kids, we set aside time together after they go to bed. Currently, we are re-watching Game of Thrones in anticipation of the upcoming final season. We aren’t very exciting people. Ha!
As far as doing things for myself, I work part-time at Unglued downtown. Even though this is technically a job, for me it’s really a time to get out of the house and clear my head. I have also been part of book clubs, I love to read. Sometimes, I’ll even get out in the evening and just wander around Barnes and Noble. I love it.
Jesse goes on an ice fishing trip every year with his brothers that I know he looks forward to. He also goes on quite a few “work” trips, I know they are work related, but ultimately he gets to hang out with his friends, talk about and drink beer.
What are your favorite things to do as a family in the summer?
We go to our family lake cabin when we can. Jesse and I are both from Barnesville, MN, so Potato Days and the Clay County Fair are always highlights of the summer. We often have backyard fires with lots of s’mores (obviously). We have also done a backyard movie that was really fun and that is on the list for this summer for sure.
What are your favorite things to do as a family in the winter?
Winter has been hard, having such a wide age range of kids. It is starting to get easier to be out for longer periods of time. There was a time where I felt like all I was doing was helping kids get in and out of winter gear and there wasn’t really a lot of outside playing. I wish I could say we were more adventurous and went skiing or snowboarding but we have not tackled that yet. Simple things like making snow forts and going sledding is fun for everyone right now!
Best birthday party spot?
This year, we had our 11-year old’s party at Fargo Pinball! It was amazing for both the kids and parents.
Do you have any other fun family tips?
One of the things that I’m beginning to realize with our boys is how much they enjoy traditions. We may not think that kids pick up on these kinds of things, but our boys really have. Whether it is having movie night on Friday nights, Saturday morning breakfast or the little things that I’ve done in the past during Christmas time, and most recently, over Valentine’s day where we made homemade pizza together. The boys commented on how much fun it was and that we had done it the year before and that we should do it next year. So figuring out what little things you can do as a family that make days special.
What is a local family-friendly event you look forward to?
We were just at the Kiwanis Pancake Feed at the Fargodome. We had not gone for a few years and we were really glad we went. We had a great breakfast and the boys were able to burn some energy in the bounce houses. This was especially welcomed after a tough couple of weeks being stuck inside. Chalkfest is always fun too. There’s so much to do and it’s at the zoo, so we get to see the animals. The Arts Partnership does a great job with this event! And, of course, the Red River Market. It’s fun for everyone, grab some food and a treat, listen to music and just experience the fun things Fargo has to offer downtown!