I’ve been a mum since I was 17 years old, mum to 3 little boys by the age of 20. I lost one of them though, my youngest! I’ll never forget it for as long as I live. He was only 4months old when I had to let him go. He was diagnosed with a rare liver condition and by the time it was discovered, the damage had been done.

Ethan just prior to his diagnosis

My Angel

Life can really deal out some shitty cards, can’t it? At the time I was just a baby having babies, to be honest, I don’t even know how I got through it, but I did, I just did.

How we cope and get through these types of situations, I guess really depends on the type of person you are, you either get up and face it and accept it or you fall down and never truly find your way, that’s the way I see it anyway.

But I got up! I threw everything I had into study, I went back to school; I went on to study towards a degree. I had two little boys that needed me to be strong, they became my reason, my strength, my why. I don’t know if they realise that though, but they were. It was far from perfect, I had my moments. I’ve had some difficulties, I’ve struggled, I enjoyed my freedom way too much, I partied and sometimes I would forget that they needed me too. I was a kid having kids, I’ve learned so much since then but I’ve grown.

Celebrating my graduation day with my two big boys 

Graduation day with my oldest boys 2009

A New Direction 

Jump forward 15 years and here I am in my 30’s with 2 more babies, exactly 18 months apart like their older brothers were. Living a similar life to what I was then, only with less partying and now a lot wiser!! I have less energy but more patience. The similarities are uncanny, I’m starting off in a new direction, having to educate myself again and make plans for the future and of course with my kids as my reason, my strength and my why!

It’s an exciting yet daunting process, this whole work from home mum thing, you have to find balance, self-control and you are often left to figure it all out on your lonesome! But you know what? Somehow you just figure it out. I’m not going to sugar coat it, there have been times when it would be easier to just give up, the process and the workload, and learning about stuff you’ve never heard of is just crazy! But then I stop and reflect on why I’m doing this and re-focus, it all becomes clear again.

I chose this type of work because I want to have ownership of my life, my time and how I make a living. The thought of not being with my babies during their early years, it really bugs me! Going back to a 9-5 job really played on my mind! It just wasn’t an option. Being in a monotonous job that won’t fulfil my soul makes me cringe. So I realised I needed to sink my teeth into something that I could do from home and that would fit around my lifestyle, my kids and something that I could pour my heart into and that belongs to me.

The Universe Aligned 

The idea for The Great Family Escape came about during my pregnancy with my youngest. He was a big surprise, in fact, we didn’t find out I was carrying him until I was almost 16 weeks along. Naturally, the idea of adding another child created some financial tension especially when you are relying solely on one income. I knew that somehow I needed to explore my options, so I could contribute and build a comfortable future for my family. It hasn’t all been straightforward, obviously, I had to get all my ducks in a row, deal with my stroppy toddler, teenagers and give birth to a baby, but somehow the universe aligned and the opportunity presented itself, ready or not! What an experience it has been so far, I’m learning things that I never knew were possible, and completely out of my comfort zone! I am my own boss and I’m in charge of my own destiny.

My background is in television and video production, it was whilst working in my previous job that I was fortunate enough to travel throughout the South Island capturing amazing places and people for Take a Break this really resonated with me and since then, my love and desire to travel more within New Zealand and abroad with my family has grown immensely. So I guess you could say The Great Family Escape will be just as beneficial to me as it will be to you, for planning our next getaway!

None of this could really have happened without the love and support of my family! My partner for holding down the fort and working hard to support us while I follow my dreams and of course my mum, how blessed I am to have you, my biggest fan and cheerleader right throughout my life, you have been my rock, supported and encouraged and believed in me. The best nana and mum a girl could ask for.

I am blessed…watch this space x

My four babies!

The older boys with my younger two