Occupation: Executive Director of Knock Knock Children’s Museum
Husband: Dr. Jamar Melton
Children: Jack, 23; Anders, 21; Wils, 18
Hobbies: traveling, painting, reading, going to concerts
While no day in the life of Christina Melton is the same as the last, what remains constant for her is a deep love for her children. Her job as the executive director of Knock Knock Children’s Museum presents new opportunities each day to fill up her to-do lists, which can make it difficult to juggle her work and home life–even with older children. However, motherhood for her has been nothing short of success, as her three boys have grown into smart and compassionate young men.
What does a normal day look like for you?
CHRISTINA: There’s no normal day for me! We have so many projects and initiatives at the museum that it is different every day. I’m always meeting new people, seeing new faces, finding new ways to engage with all our visitors and members, and looking for new partners to do great things for our community.
In the mornings, I make coffee and get into work early. I’m a big list maker, so I make lists over the course of the day so I can stay focused and tick things off my list as I go through them. Since things are so different every day, lists are very important to me. I usually stay at the museum to close up and am home by 5:30-6 every day.
What are some of the joys and challenges of raising your children?
CHRISTINA: Some of the joys include watching them pursue things that interest them and make them happy. It’s been challenging trying to balance family and work life and making sure to help my children pursue those interests while juggling my own professional life.
How would you describe yourself as a mom?
CHRISTINA: I’m pretty tough and have high standards for my kids. I expect a lot out of them, but I’m very proud of them and love them more than anything in the world.
What do you like to do as a family?
CHRISTINA: We do a lot of traveling. We love to do road trips; those have been some of the greatest memories, from North Carolina, to Utah to Colorado, and beyond. We visit new places a lot. It’s never the same place twice!
What’s your favorite thing about being a mom?
CHRISTINA: Just loving my kids. I love having that family time and support network in which we care about each other, set each other up for success, and help each other through challenges.
What has been an unexpected challenge to motherhood?
CHRISTINA: The day-to-day ups and downs my children go through has definitely been the most unexpected challenge. It can be a lot, watching them go through those highs and lows of growing up. Sometimes those moments are filled with joy, and sometimes they are excruciating.
What has parenthood taught you?
CHRISTINA: To be humble!
What are some things you hope to teach your children?
CHRISTINA: I hope to teach them to make a difference in the world; to try to improve the lives of the people around them with the things they do, the interactions they have, and the relationships they build.
What is something your work life has taught you about parenting?
CHRISTINA: My work has taught me to be more patient and to understand that everybody has a story. Everybody has things they’re dealing with on a daily basis, so it’s important to interact with people whose paths you cross from a position of understanding.
How do you tackle any challenges you face as a mom?
CHRISTINA: I start with a deep breath most times. Then, I try to take a step back and think, is this a big deal or a little deal? From there I try to put everything into perspective over a long arc of that child’s life. Some things are not as important as they may seem in the moment, while other things are very important and need real attention, so it goes both ways.
What is a parenting myth you want to debunk?
CHRISTINA: There’s no right or wrong way to parent! You just have to be adaptable and flexible and do your best.
What personality trait of yours do your children also have?
CHRISTINA: They’re all as different from one another as they could possibly be, like three points of a triangle. However, they are all hardworking, compassionate, bright, and fun-loving–all positive characteristics I would like to think I have. But, when you’re trying to be humble, sometimes you know that has nothing to do with you. I’m proud of the people they have become.
Do you have any advice for other parents?
CHRISTINA: That’s another thing I have learned, to not give other people advice on parenting. Everyone finds what works for them and their families, and that’s the best way to go. Just love your kids, whatever you do! And make sure your kids know you love them.
My favorite TV show is…Ted Lasso.
My favorite dessert is…cannoli.
My favorite food is…Italian food.
My favorite holiday is…The Fourth of July.
My guilty pleasure is…relaxing by myself.
The first thing I do when I wake up is…make coffee.
I’m always laughing at…myself.
Favorite relaxation destination…Fairhope, AL.