Who could balance starting two separate businesses while churning out children’s books, and also while playing the part of a rock-star mom? Christina Geist, that’s who. Geist describes her professional life as wearing three different hats: “One of those is that I’m a writer: I write children’s books,” she says. “The other hat I wear is a business I have called True Geist, which is a consulting firm. And my third is Boombox.” And that’s not to mention this multifaceted wonder of a woman is also a loving mother-of-two (her kiddos are 8 and 10), and wife (hubby is MSNBC host Willie Geist).As Geist mentions, two of the three hats she wears are both flourishing businesses she started.
What began as a contribution to a longtime friend’s birthday celebration—a cute DIY box highlighting all of the special moments through her life—has now fully blossomed into Boombox. Boombox lets you digitally collect photos, notes, and memories in one beautifully designed box to gift to a loved one for occasions like baby showers, weddings, and anniversaries.
“Boombox can work any number of ways as a gift,” Geist says. “The typical way people use it is for milestone occasions like a 30th or 40th birthday, where they’re collecting memories, photos, messages from as many people they can track down, and giving it to the recipient. I call it digital DIY.” Boombox takes away the stress of physically putting together a commemorative box and allows sentiment to take the front seat.
And that’s only hat No. 1! Geist has built a system that molds to her bustling career and family, and she’s got it all figured out. “I’ve always believed that it takes a village and that you should welcome one into your life that you can really trust, who are there to help you in those crunch times of the day,” Geist says.
A member of Geist’s unique village is, unsurprisingly, her husband Willie (they’ve been together since middle school!). They work as partners, and are very intentional about how their unit operates, learning from past hiccups. “A mistake that we made from time to time is keeping score. Like I have to breastfeed the baby, so he has to deal with the diapers,” Geist explains. “I just don’t think that’s conducive to a partnership, so we’ve never held things over each other’s heads.”
Plus, with both of their skyrocketing careers, there’s not enough time or energy to throw blame. “You’re just not about to play the game of: ‘Who’s got it harder right now?’” Geist says. “You almost brush that all away and really work to lift each other out of it.”
In addition to finding that right village, Geist places emphasis on knowing your children and knowing them well. “I always look at what door I need to be standing in, and when is that moment of the day that is not negotiable for me? Do I need to be the one dropping off at ballet every single time? Probably not,” she says. “But at night if something didn’t go well at ballet and somebody is upset and wants to talk, I crawl into that bed. That was the critical moment of the day, so I think it’s just about really intimately knowing your child.”
Geist not only takes advantage of these moments; she welcomes her children into the world of her work. “I think at a philosophical level, your kids should see you as a multi-dimensional person, and that makes you a better parent and will give them a broader view of womanhood in general,” Geist says. This means inviting her little ones to physically see her work.
“Right now I run our businesses in the same building that we live in, and that’s by design. So, if I can’t swing pickup at 3pm, but at 3:30pm when they come home, they pop into the office and see my work, particularly with Boombox, they grasp it and then they’re inherently connected to it,” she adds. Geist encourages other parents to incorporate this thinking into their personal and professional lives.
Even if certain areas of work aren’t necessarily tangible, there are ways to make it something real to children. “Work is not this far-off thing, and they value and appreciate it,” Geist says. “Put it in a concept they can grasp, that they feel like they’re engaged in, instead of seeing you on your phone doing work emails. Give them context and they become a part of it.”
Head to boomboxgifts.com to learn more and to receive a $10 off discount with code “newyorkfamily” entered at checkout!