home People The Coronado View On…Balance

The Coronado View On…Balance

Life is a juggling act — work, family, friendships, health and hobbies all make for a full life — but there are only so many hours in a day. We asked Coronadans with some very full plates how they keep it all together and stay centered.

“How do I stay balanced? That’s easy — I just carry one on each hip!” ~ Greg West, teacher and father of twins (and another baby on the way)  Greg West IMG_0876



“As a working mom, I find it essential not to overextend myself and to keep things simple. Every week, I plan regular family activities like game night so we can focus on what’s really important and create time to reconnect in our busy schedules. I also wake up early every day and get some form of exercise. Whether it’s yoga or the gym, I get in some “me” time, and I start the day refreshed and energized.”

~ Kristina Quesada, Realtor and mother


kraig nichols


“As a contractor, anything and everything you build has to start with a good foundation or nothing can be stable. In my life, that foundation is fostering strong bonds through honesty and reliability with my family, friends, and clients. When those relationships are thriving, all the rest falls into place.”

~ Kraig Nicolls, business owner and father of three


Kaitlyn Gillingham with friend Katie Pontes IMG_1253


“The last couple of years have been momentous in both my personal and work life. To stay centered, I find pockets of time throughout my day to do something just for me.  My favorite thing to do is to take a walk at dusk with my dog, Ben, and a friend or my husband, Brett. Walking around our town reminds me why I work so hard to call Coronado home.”

~ Kaitlyn Milke (left), recipient of National Association of Realtors “30 under 30” award for 2015, newlywed, and new homeowner




“During the school year it’s a challenge to juggle teaching, performing, and family, but it works out that my performance schedule is usually busiest during the summer. Still, in busier times, if I know I have just one or two days or nights to spend with family, we try to capitalize on those opportunities and plan something special, like a trip to the zoo or an outing to Pizza Port in Ocean Beach. A bonus is when my wife and children can come hear me play.” ~ Matt Heinecke, high school teacher, musician and father of two

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Amy McKnight photo


“When it comes to balancing work and family, we like to keep it local. Living in Coronado, we are able to spend our weekends as a family enjoying the beach, parks, concerts, and good food right here on the island without breaking the bank or having to commute somewhere. We’ve also foregone daycare facilities and stuck with in-home care. I couldn’t do everything I do without the help of those amazing caretakers!”

~ Amy McKnight, interior designer and mother of five


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“One of the things that helps me to stay on top of everything is my morning coffee, which consists of four shots of espresso, 16 packets of sugar, two or three ounces of half-and-half, all poured over ice. I sip it throughout the day and I call it ‘fuel.’”

~ Casey Tanaka, Coronado mayor and high school teacher






“There is this mentality in our culture that we should be able to do it all, but the reality is that something will eventually have to give — so prioritizing is a must. To keep it all balanced, I first rely on my faith and staying active in my church, which help me keep perspective on what really matters. Secondly, I think it’s critical to protect time with my family with things like sit down dinners and regular dates. And, I make an effort not to forget to take care of my health. When life is demanding, it’s easy to give up workouts and sleep – but you can’t take care of others if your own physical and mental health aren’t in check. Oh, and night walks along the Coronado Bay do wonders for re-centering yourself!”

~ Jessica Tompane, business owner and Navy wife

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CLM Starfish

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