Within minutes of meeting Jalynne Crawford, wife of SF Giants star Brandon Crawford, it’s clear that she’s juggling a lot and frazzled by very little. Crawford is a totally relatable mom, navigating a quarantined household with her whole family underfoot. She’s homeschooling three of her four kids in between the baby’s naps. Her husband’s M.L.B. season is stalled and she’s a partner in a bustling business. But Jalynne Crawford is a former UCLA-gymnast who earned a Master’s Degree in Education. She’s one of 7 kids. She’s got this.
We talked about teaching strategies for harried parents, how she’ll feel if M.L.B. sequesters players for the entire season and what it’s really like to shelter in place with one of the San Francisco Giants biggest stars. And since Jalynne is sister-in-law to the Yankees’ Gerrit Cole, we talked about raising kids amongst all those famous faces.
But what struck me most about my conversation with Jalynne Crawford is that she doesn’t sweat the small stuff, she counts her blessings and she inspires everyone around her to do the same. Myself, included.
Meet Jalynne Crawford, MVP Mom.
Advice To Homeschooling Parents
“I have my Master’s Degree in teaching and I’ve taught second grade and sixth grade so for me I have the background knowledge for that, but it’s still hard to teach your own kids. They just don’t like school from their parents.
Parents feel down when they don’t finish every assignment, but it’s hard to do schoolwork at home. Most parents have jobs they’re doing so they’re focused on that. They have little brothers and sisters or babies. We all have so many other things, not just school. So keep going and try to make learning fun. That’s the biggest thing. If you can find a way to engage your student or learner, right now that’s your own children, we try to make it fun.”
All-Star, World Series Winner, Teacher? Sharing The Load With Giants Star Brandon Crawford
“Usually when he’s at the field I’m on my own, but I’ve always had help. My parents have so graciously moved in with us. My mom has travelled back and forth for the baseball season with us so we couldn’t be more blessed.
But when Brandon’s home we share responsibilities. Most of that time it’s been a two-person homework job because we’re helping three kids. Ours are so young, first grade, kinder and pre-school, so they all need guided instruction He’ll help one, I’ll help one, then we’ll get to the other.”
On The Extended Off-Season This Year
“We’ve enjoyed every extra minute we’ve gotten to spend with him. We’re used to the off-season with him home so it feels like an extended portion of that except he’s finding creative ways to stay ready. But we love having him home. We got to celebrate Easter at home for the first time a while. We didn’t have to ask Easter bunny to come early or late.”
On Plans To Start The 2020 MLB Season
“It’s confusing. We hear one thing then we don’t hear anything for a couple weeks. Now it’s at a standstill. We don’t know what to expect. All we can do is have him prepared and ready for a season. We’re still hoping they get to play a season. He’s ready. The silver lining is he’s enjoying being home and remaining balanced.”
About Those Rumors M.L.B. Will Be Sequestering Players In Florida or Arizona
“I have a hard time believing players would agree to that. We’re fortunate he was there for the birth of all our children, but I know a lot of players and families who are about to have their first child. Those moments are bigger than baseball. There’s no way they can have them miss out on that. One being my sister-in-law Amy and Gerrit Cole. They’re due with their first baby. If the season starts they’re not going to miss the birth of their first child.”
Raising Kids Within A Family Champions
We have always talked about this. Every kid should be involved in an extra-curricular activity. It keeps them focused and well balanced and helps them achieve goals. And that’s Brandon and my big focus is setting goals and achieving them.
We were doing gymnastics 40-50 hours a week by 7 and 8 years old, 5 days a week. I feel a little sad that we didn’t get to try other sports. I started my kids in gymnastics at 2 and 3 years old and they were like ‘How many days have you brought them?’ and I said, ‘This is their first time.’ I purposely wanted them to do it for fun.
This past offseason they started gymnastics at a little gym near our house and the owner came up to me and said ‘All the coaches are staring at your daughters. They can’t stop watching. How do we get them on our team?’ I didn’t put them in for two years for this reason. I want them to be able to try all sports. They’re still young enough to try multiple things.”
Her Partnership With Clothing Company Tiny Turnip
“I was asked a few years ago to work with Tiny Turnip and I wasn’t ready. We were having our fourth and I just wanted to focus on that. But in the back of my mind I always enjoyed design. So when the opportunity came up to join Tiny Turnip, being that they were licensed, it’s been really fun.
Even Brandon’s helped. We were really excited because we were launching player art this year. Brandon went through all the M.L.B. and helped. Rachel, who started to the company, is an incredible artist. We put our minds together. She’ll take my idea and puts it to life. Now fans get to enjoy what we’ve all been able to enjoy for so long.
The clothes are unique and different compared to what’s out there. It’s special.”
Giving Back & COVID Relief
“Right now COVID is the top priority. We created masks because there was such a need for it. Rachel’s been sewing masks with her family. And our sewers get to do the work at home. It’s kept everyone going. Our process takes a little longer because everyone is working from home, but we’ve been able to keep going.
It’s a great company that really has a unique story and I’m happy to be proud of it.”