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My perfect balance? Part-time lawyer, full-time mom

To me, Motherly means. . .bestowing all of the knowledge and life skills you have upon your children.

My perfect balance? Part-time lawyer, full-time mom

Motherly @ Work features the stories and insights of modern women growing their careers—and their families.


Sufi Hariri is one of those mamas. A San Francisco-based lawyer and mom-of-two, she currently works in her family’s law practice, along with her brother, father and husband.

Besides rocking business deals as a part-time lawyer, Sufi is a full-time mom.

“I moonlight as a chauffeur, maid, referee, chef and entertainer.”

Working part-time means that she has enough time to attend mommy-and-me classes, “ from story time at the Reading Bug, ballet at Tutu School, to Music Together classes and frequent visits to local zoos and amusement parks. These are the moments I cherish and look forward to every week,” she explains.

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Here’s what Sufi shared with Motherly about how she makes it all work—

My work situation works for me right now because. . .

I go to work part-time and can 100% immerse myself in my career, then when I come home, I can be 100% attentive to my girls.

I get the best of both worlds and I wouldn’t want it any other way.

I’m inspired to do this work because. . .

I get to protect the family business that my dad worked so hard to establish.

There is no other client you can be more passionate about than your own family and it drives me to be better everyday.

If I just do this one thing every day my work and home lives run more smoothly.

Make to-do lists!

I have a to-do list for everything—from work issues, to meals, to shopping lists, to activities, I’ve got all topics covered.


I’m old fashioned – I need to handwrite my lists to feel certain that I am not forgetting anything. To that end, I use the Cambridge Business Planner Notebook and Redi-Tag Divider Sticky Notes.
My fave look to rock at work. . .

Slacks, silk shirt, tight blazer, statement necklace with pumps or a conservative suit if I have a court appearance.

My partner supports me by. . .

Being my emotional rock and my most trusted advisor. When my emotions, whether work or family related, get the best of me, he is always the calming voice of reason.

I can lean on him for everything—whether that be reading my brief for court, checking my outfit and offering fashion tips, or letting me vent continually about the same issue. 

He adores my quirky, obsessive-compulsive behavior and always reminds me of what a wonderful mom I am.

He is my best friend, my soul-mate, my business partner and my personal sounding board.

My big crazy dream for work is to one day. . .

To become a Judge (my husband promised to run my campaign).

On the hard days, I remind myself. . .

That I am blessed with an amazing and loving family and that is, in the end, all that matters to me.

The best work advice I ever got was . . .

From the beginning of my career, I have always worried about people underestimating me professionally because I am a woman and because I look far younger than I really am (though I hope that holds true in my elder years!)

I have since been less focused on how to appear strong, and more concerned with being strong, often to the surprise of my counterparts in court.

The childcare situation that works for us right now. . .

My mom plays a huge role in my kids’ lives.

She drops off and picks up my older daughter at school and plays with my youngest daughter in the meantime.

My nanny is also a great help with assisting my mom when both kids are home: playing with them, preparing snacks, meals and laundry for the kids and a bunch of miscellaneous tasks (dishes, bottles, disinfecting toys, cleaning playroom etc.)

Tell us about a typical day in your life:

On the days that I’m working—

7am. . .

I’m supervising my 3 year old as she gets ready for school while also getting my one year old ready for the day (brushing teeth, changing clothe etc.) and then I turn on the television and rush to get myself ready for the day.

9am. . .

Just arrived to work and plowing through my emails and voicemails.

12pm. . .

Having a pre-packed lunch in the conference room with my colleagues (including my husband and brother).

3pm. . .

Working.

6pm. . .

Sitting around the dinner table, listening to music, and catching up on my family’s day.

9pm. . .

Sitting on the couch with my husband, watching our favorite television shows with each of our laptops on our lap working away.

On the days I’m with the kids—

7am. . .

I’m supervising my 3 year old as she gets ready for school while also getting my one year old ready for the day (brushing teeth, changing clothe etc.) and then I turn on the television and rush to get myself ready for the day.

9am. . .

Dropping off my older daughter at school and taking the younger one out for “mommy-me” activity.

12pm. . .

picking up my older daughter from school and having lunch at home

3pm. . .

running errands or working at my home office while the girls take a nap

6pm. . .

Sitting around the dinner table, listening to music, and catching up on our day.

9am. . .

Sitting on the couch with my husband, watching our favorite television shows with each of our laptops on our lap working away.

I make time to recharge by. . .

Exercising – I love Soul Cycle and running. It’s my time to zone out and clear my mind of all the “noise.”

To me, Motherly means. . .

bestowing all of the knowledge and life skills you have upon your children.

Perhaps more importantly, to me it means giving my children the tools to develop the knowledge and life skills I may lack so they may reach higher highs.

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