Real Moms Feature: Corinne Lloyd
In this feature, Corinne tells us how she juggles being a wife, full time mom, all the while running her home based business as an In-Home Educator with several care kids under her wing.
Corinne and her family live in Wellington, New Zealand.
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How would you describe yourself?
I’m a down-to-earth Mum of two wonderful and busy children.
I chose to resign from my Duty Manager role when my first child was almost one year old. I became a Home Educator and have never looked back.
Choosing to leave my role as an employee and become self-employed has given me the option to work more at a pace that suits my family and share our home with some wonderful preschoolers.
My girl was an only child for 4 & ½ years, but was exposed to socializing and sharing from an early age. She has made some wonderful friends with the children in my care and they have become like siblings.
The biggest bonus is that I get to spend a lot more time with my own children in their early years than if I had to go out to work.
What is the best part of being a mother?
This is a hard question as I feel there are many many rewards of motherhood! One of the best is seeing my little people grow and develop such individual personalities.
My two children have been raised very similar but were such different little people from an early age. I find this fascinating.
I also adore the feeling of unconditional love my children give back to me. If I lose my patience and raise my voice… it upsets them; but two minutes later, I am smothered in cuddles from them. No grudges held – just acceptance. Even my 2 year old has started saying “Sorry Mama” – it melts my heart!
What is the most difficult part of being a mother?
1. Letting them grow up! Independence is one thing – but I know there will come a time (or be a phase) when I am nowhere near the center of their Universe and they no longer need me!
Seriously though, although the clingy stage of toddler-hood can be draining… I think it is probably easier than when my children are “too cool for Mum”!
2. Being a parent and not a “friend”. Children can be great manipulators; and I find with my daughter in particular (my first-born), I often struggle to say “No” to many demands and follow through with consequences.
What does your husband/partner do?
My partner, Brent, works as a night Manager at a Supermarket. He does 5-6 nights from about 9.00pm until 7:30am. So a lot of the “parenting” during the week is done by me.
How did you meet your husband/partner?
We met 8 years ago at work. I was a Duty Manager at the same Supermarket he works at now.
What do you do for a Living; and what does it entail?
Preschoolers come into my home to be cared for during the day. I treat my care children like my own while they are with me. They become part of the family. They eat, sleep, cuddle, play, and learn with us.
I do pick ups and drop offs for Creche and Kindergarten twice a week. Most mornings, we are out in the Community for various activities.
Our regular weekly outings include playgroups, music, parks, and the library. We also do occasional excursions such as train rides and trips to the Zoo, Te Papa Museum, the local swimming pool, fire stations. In the summer, we go to the beaches the Wellington Waterfront.
It is so rewarding seeing children develop and learn new skills. It is difficult to juggle working life and a young family. Being a Carer works well for our family at this stage. My children have playmates to enjoy and learn alongside.
I earn an income, and I can still be flexible and available for my own children’s needs and activities during the week.
How do you manage being a working mother?
Preparation is key! As a Mum, I have never been an overly routine sort of person. But having other young children in care – working around various nap times, Kindy, Creche, and School runs; my weekdays have naturally developed into a bit more routine.
My preschool children are more settled with knowing generally what their day composes of; and they cope better if I manage our time well, so they hardly ever have to be woken from naps.
Amidst our weekly routines though, I make sure there is room for flexibility such as a spontaneous train ride, last minute play date, or trip to the beach on a gorgeous day!
The a bonus of In-Home Care is that we can also alter things to suit moods. If one of the children is a bit under the weather, or has had a bad night’s sleep and needs a quiet day, we will adjust our plans to be at home.
And back to my PREPARATION point: I have a messy yet functional Calendar – with extra reminders on my phone for main events (majority of which are kid-based)!
I maintain a fairly tidy house as I myself hate to lose stuff. Without being overly obsessive, I find that if things are less chaotic around me physically, I can relax more and feel happier going about my day.
In saying that, our house is lived in – we create mess, have many, many toys out at once during play time, break things occasionally and leave stuff lying around… but generally, things have a place at the end of the day and my children are pretty good at helping to clean up their own mess.
Being prepared and fairly organized leaves more time for me to enjoy my job as a Carer and Mum; and leaves space for me to “stop and smell the roses”,
What is one thing in your life that you would like to change, and why?
To be honest, I wish that I had had my children when I was younger so I could have a bigger family!
I get an abundance of pleasure from my kids every single day, and being a Mum is the most rewarding job I have ever had…. but energy levels in my early 40’s are not what they used to be!
Having said that, I feel so blessed to have a pigeon pair – healthy and perfect in every way in my eyes (sorry for sounding so cheesy but I’m not sure how else to put it!)
If you were a superhero, who you would be and why?
I must admit – I have never been a huge fan of Superheros! I have to really rack my brains for this one!
Can we call Peter Pan and Wendy superheroes? I had dreams of flying (as a person not a plane!) when I was a child. Being a Fairy seems super cute and I love the idea of keeping children’s imaginations alive and helping humans!
My 7 year old daughter believes in Fairies and says that they don’t visit much as they are always busy helping people! Or collecting TEETH and giving out coins!
What is the first thing you would do with your super powers?
Give my parents eternal life! I want them to see their Grandchildren become Grandparents!
If a young person asked for your advice and you only had a one tip to give them, what would it be?
Honesty – Be true to yourself. Dishonesty and secrets harbor guilt, loneliness and lack of self-worth. Everyone deserves better than that.
And be kind to yourself. (I know that makes two things!) It has taken me a long-time and I am part way there with the self-kindness part. I know when I get all the way there I will feel the most incredible sense of freedom.
With these values within, giving kindness becomes such a natural and rewarding thing.
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ABOUT MELISSA AND WAYNE
Wayne is an Accountant and the brains behind our personal finances. Melissa is the ex-Recruiter turned homemaker, writer, and serial mompreneur! We write about Smart Money Practices like How I Paid My $24,000 Debt Off In 16 Months, Practical Parenting and Why You Should Tell Your Daughters They Are Beautiful, and Career.