People keep referring to me (kindly) as Superwoman (if only I looked that good in lycra-wait-a-minute who my kidding, I’d NEVER wear lycra) but truth be told, I’m asked quite a bit, ‘How do you do it?’ so I thought I’d blog exactly how!
First things first, I’m definitely not Superwoman and the reason I can ‘do it’ as in work as a professional blogger, full time but with flexible working hours, with 2 children aged 5 and 2, is thanks to all the people in my life frankly, who make it all possible.
I thought I’d share this with you to simply debunk the myth of any preconceived notions of superpowers on my part and be totally honest about what goes into running my blogs as businesses and keeping the tricky balancing act called juggling, going.
I’m just like the millions of other women out there trying to earn a crust with a young family… and of course I’m lucky enough that working makes financial sense with the childcare available to me to.
The workforce is no equal playing field for mothers wanting to return to their day (or night) job that’s for sure but blogging has readdressed that somewhat, meaning more women (and men) just like myself, are finding ways to work in ways that suit their lives and families feeding their brains, heart and pockets.
So let me break it down-
I tend to take Mondays off or most of the day anyway, just for Alexander and I to mostly pretend we’re star footballers in the local park or bake. We love to bake. And eat. A lot. Good times.
Weekends are for family time. Always.
My life and career are entwined so this does sometimes mean weekends away reviewing lovely cottages and hotels (poor kids 😉 ) but as I’m sure you can tell, it’s fun and doesn’t ever feel like work.
It just means I have to write about what we get up to on our return, which is what I do generally about our little lives, on the parts I choose to share that is.
My amazing former lecturer of a Mum helps with childcare as does a lovely lady, Beverly, a family friend who pops over 2-3 times a week for a few hours in the morning to help with Alexander and she evens tidies up when he lets her. Amazing lady.
My Dad on his one day off from running his restaurant group, dashes over to hang out with my kids and if I need to be in London or Manchester for work, I know I can always count on my parents. I don’t take any of this for granted either, when we lived in London then Bristol far from family, it was near impossible for me to work especially at the time, directing on set, so I’m indebted to my folks, truly.
..Yes it’s true I work hard, very hard but as I write quickly and prolifically (always have) I schedule posts in advance and work weeks and sometimes months ahead, especially when it comes to planned blogging series like Wonderful Women and Who’s the Daddy.
I do take on new commissions daily too and of course, emailing leads, responding to emails, tweets, securing new business, and trying to keep up with the Kardashians is all part of my day job (I’m properly rubbish at keeping up with Kim and co though so don’t be too impressed, now ).
It’s not for everyone and there are certainly no rules so I’d say just go with what feels right for you and most importantly what is feasible.
The beauty of blogging means unless something is urgent deadline wise, I stop for lunch, can hang out in the park when I want to, pick up Oliver from school (which I do daily), make dinner and share bedtime with my husband, continuing with my work if needed on an evening/night/ or whenever.
I am rather good at switching off (and am always trying to improve) so there’s rarely tapping at laptops at midnight unless work is urgent.
Pre-bedtime is dedicated to silly TV (hello Family Guy) with my husband and a bit of wind down yoga. If you see tweets and posts, they’re usually pre-scheduled.
I’ve also recently hired an incredible PA/Publicist, Hayley, who goes through what often is a mountain of emails, handles PR for me now, and helps keep my schedule organised.
With modelling and ambassadorial contracts, planned press, filming commissions that I’m in as well as directing, along with my usual sponsored posts and ad placements, it’s great to have someone I click with, working for me, to discuss, plan and organise my work life.
I still write all my blog posts but Hayley helps make my workload manageable and is a crucial member of Honest Mum Limited as my business continues to grow and expand.
Additionally, for the last year I’ve employed a designer Amee who keeps my blogs looking their best and helps with any technical issues as and when they crop up, as does my IT guru of a husband Peter.
Now onto my main man who can, Peter, who has a brilliant day job in IT but also shoots the majority of the photography on both my blogs (he really is gifted) so while I do the writing, cooking and modelling, he’s there shooting away, supporting, loving, working his magic.
He’s a huge part of my blog and its success and as soppy as it sounds, to work with the man you love who makes you feel the most relaxed you’ve ever felt in front of the camera (he was commissioned to shoot the last two shoots for Nova Harley, the latter featuring in British Vogue) is something quite special.
Our shoots, especially with the kids are super-quick and most importantly a joy for us all.
So that’s it in a nutshell, some days I’m high-fiving myself that I’m winning at this crazy thing called parenting, other days I feel I’m failing at it all. Mostly it’s a middle ground, yay it’s 9pm everyone’s eaten, asleep and my work here is done!
I think in life it’s so important to try and make what you love your job and I hand on heart LOVE, love, love my blogging career and everything that come with it and from it- I’m creative and need my job to feel fulfilled and content as well as of course for financial reasons.
I need to get gluten-free bread on the table people and doing it in a way that makes me happy is really important to me.
Happy parents equals happy kids, right?
I must add some of my closest friends are SAHM’s and I have the utmost respect for them but I just know it’s not for me.
There it is, a busy, never, ever boring life. One I feel so grateful for. Because I’m no superwoman, I’m just a woman with a lot of super support.