Where are you from originally and how long have you lived in Houston?
I was born and raised in and around NYC. My sister and mother still live there and are die hard new Yorkers. I fell in love with a Texan (who was living in New York) and ended up moving to Texas with him almost 9 years ago. The time has just flown by!
Child(ren) and Age(s)?
I have two daughter native Texan daughters, Cyrah (6.5) and Ayana (3.5). They challenge and inspire me both personally and professionally on a daily basis. They are so very different from each other but together complete our family.
One thing people would be surprised to know about you…
I love bugs! I love being outdoors and exploring nature with my kids. One of my favorite places to visit is the insectarium in New Orleans. I find it fascinating.
Favorite local activities to do in Houston?
I love so many things about Houston! The diversity in the arts, dining, sports are all what makes living here amazing. We love going to watch the Rockets and Texans games.
Do you have a favorite family-friendly restaurant in the area?
I love Pondicherri. It is modern Indian cuisine owned by a Houston female chef. Not only do I love their food but I love that I am able support another female entrepreneur.
What local places do you go to for pampering and/or mom’s night out?
I love to dance! My favorite place to go dancing is downtown at a place called the Commoner. I may be getting to the point of being on the older side of the crowd there but the music is fantastic!
Are you involved in a business venture, a local organization, a creative endeavor, or in the corporate world? Please share!
I am a board-certified pediatric dentist and owner of West U Pediatric Dentistry. WUPD was inspired by my experience as a mother in the modern healthcare setting. Unfortunately, the business of medicine has changed the healthcare experience today. The majority of practices are volume based, leading to little face to face time with a doctor, busy waiting rooms and care that is not personalized. This is something that I would not tolerate for my own child so why should other parents have to.
At West U Pediatric Dentistry, I spend double the time with my patients than the average pediatric dentist. This way I can build relationships that will help the parent/child feel comfortable and allow us to cater to the individual preferences of your child. I don’t expect children to fit in a box, they are all different and our goal is to meet them where they are in the dental process. I believe in involving parents in our decision-making process so that they are in control of their child’s healthcare.
Are there any other things that make West U Pediatric Dentistry stand out?
Yes! I am specialty trained in tongue and lip tie release. This is an issue that can affect infants during breast/bottle feeding phase but can also affect speech and feeding in older children. It is something we address on all ages. We have an in-house lactation consultant and speech language pathologist to assist these families before and after the procedure.
How has the Houston community been instrumental in getting you to where you are now?
Houston is such a welcoming city. The majority of Houstonians are transplants and understand what it is like to be new in a neighborhood. We have made so many wonderful friends. Houston is also a city of innovators and entrepreneurs. There are people coming from all over the country to do start ups here in Houston. The community has really supported my business, particularly the mom community. I try to do the same by supporting local businesses and female owned businesses.
What is the best advice for juggling mommyhood and running a business (or volunteering, working, etc)?
Be organized and know how to delegate. My husband and I have a meeting every Sunday. We review our schedules, the kid’s schedules, social activities going on, who is working out when and what we are eating. This allows us to eliminate any surprises during the week and make sure we have the manpower to get everything done. This meeting takes 20-30 minutes but saves us so much time during the week.
The second part is don’t be too hard on yourself. At the end of the day you are one human, and there is only 24 hours in a day. Do your best and the rest will fall into place.
What would you tell the old “You” before you had kids?
Sleep more! If its one thing I miss most is the ability to sleep in.