Celebrating Mothers: Getting up close and personal with Honest Mum

If you asked me to name the most successful blogger I know, I would tell you, without a moments pause, Honest Mum. With a multi-award winning parenting and lifestyle blog, one of the biggest in the world, there is nothing that this woman cannot do. A writer, TV and film director and soon to be author, Vicki is fiercely ambitious, strong, inspiring and incredibly gracious. And Pearl and I were lucky enough to interview her for our Celebrating Mothers week.

Thank you Vicki for taking part in “Celebrating Mothers Week”. What are you doing this week to celebrate?

V: Hopefully sleeping! It feels like we’ve been hit with endless bugs here so the best gift I could receive is undisturbed sleep, and failing that a move to LA to live on the beach. Is that too much to ask? Seriously, we will be away for a weekend that my kids and husband are planning so I’m excited to see where we go. I’ll also be spoiling my own mum with a girlie spa day when we get back.

What is your sweetest Mother’s Day memory?

V: When it came to my own Mother’s Day, it has to be my very first one in March 2010. I was still in shock that I was actually a mum to be honest, and whilst I was dealing with a traumatic birth at the time and felt awful, I do also remember feeling incredibly proud to have this bouncing, smiley baby in my life. It marked a huge milestone for me. I was a mum.

As a child, a memory of my own mum’s Mother’s Day has to be seeing her burst into tears at words I’d written in a card for her. She’s not someone who cries often, so it’s stuck in my memory.

You wrote a beautifully lighthearted article on the ten things you have learned from your mother (http://honestmum.com/things-my-mother-taught-me/). One of my personal favorites from the list was to “always remove the price stickers from under your shoes”. Have you always been able to laugh with your mother? Was there a particular age at which your relationship grew into friendship?

V: My mum has always been my best friend and I’m grateful to have such a strong bond with her. She was a teacher and university lecturer before opening restaurants with my Dad, and has and continues to have, a huge impact in my life. She’s an incredibly fair, objective and compassionate person. A proud feminist raising a feminist (me), she gave me a badge to wear as a child, which read ‘Women, together are strong’. That’s a through-line in all I do.

I’m lucky to have had her as a blueprint for all the other female relationships which came after.  She’s the first person I call with a problem and along with my husband, is probably the person who knows me the best in the world.

We asked our fellow parent bloggers what they would most like to ask Honest Mum.

Do you think a parent can have it all? The successful career and being the best parent you can be? ~ Nature Mum Blog

V: I think it’s about accepting you can have it all just not all of the time, and that, that ‘all’ differs from person to person. When it comes to career and motherhood, there will always be compromises, as with everything in life. Some days I feel I’m winning at life, that I’ve got the juggle nailed, other days I feel (often wrongly) that I’m failing at everything. What I do know and what drives me, is that to be a happy mum, personally, I need and love to work. Writing is like breathing to me. I do have strict boundaries when it comes to work and family life because if I feel I’m not working enough or seeing my kids enough, I’m off balance.

Blogging has allowed me to work in a flexible, liberating way around my family so I don’t miss out on being there for my kids or making my deadlines. I schedule a lot of social media posts and write prolifically so that helps with online visibility. For eg a post will go live but I’m actually doing bath time. I think when you love what you do, you find a way. I’m currently writing my book in the evenings once my kids sleep. The key is being organised and consistent. It’s important to be kind to yourself too.

When it comes to managing it all- what is your secret? ~ Me & B Make Tea

Organisation. I’m lucky that I have a great manager and publicist who make my life easier. We are also moving back South this year as I travel to London from Leeds weekly and it’s time to move. My youngest is in nursery 2-3 days a week and is with me 2 days, and my eldest is in school so the structure is there for them. They have after school drama and IT classes and swimming on a Sunday. My husband and I share family duties equally (as it should be) and I’m lucky that I write quickly. My career as a screenwriter and director meant writing prolifically and on a crazy schedule was part of the job so that put me in good stead for my blogging and vlogging career.

What do you think is the one thing that only you have that makes you stand out from the blogging crowd? ~ Mind your Mama

I don’t think I have that one thing, but thank you so much. I think we all have something special which helps us to stand out, our voices are unique and that is our power.  So much of what I do is focused on inspiring others to seize this gloriously democratic digital space and share their voice and view of the world. I think hard work, tenacity and a commitment to honing your skills and pushing out of your comfort zone is the key to success for all.  I do think being a filmmaker pre-blogging has helped me. I’m a storyteller. You don’t have to have a career in the media to shine in blogging though and that’s the beauty of it.

What has been your greatest challenge in motherhood so far, and how have you overcome it? ~ Motherhood the real deal

V: Suffering from a traumatic birth was the greatest challenge but I overcame it thanks several things: the help of a great therapist, starting my blog Honest Mum and moving closer to family. It took 5 years to write a post about it which has helped many women and is also a topic I’m covering in my Mumboss book out in March 2018 http://honestmum.com/being-honest-a-traumatic-birth/.

A huge turning point for me confidence-wise was being a finalist in the BritMums (britmums.com) Briliance in Blogging Awards in 2010, 4 weeks after starting my blog. I was truly honoured to win Best of the Best and Best Social in their awards last year.

In what ways, if any, has blogging enhanced or been a hindrance to motherhood for you? Adventures of a novice mum

V: Blogging has been such a present part of my journey as a mother as I started Honest Mum in 2010 when my first son was 10 months old. It was thanks to my blog and having a space online to call my own that I was able to grow in confidence from feeling utterly broken. It gave me a platform, a means of expression at a time I felt completely lost. I think the fact I reflect a lot as a mother in my posts on the blog and social as well as using it as a memory keeper enhances motherhood. Pre-blogging we had physical baby books and photo albums, now many of us share our lives with the world. I feel so supported too because the online community is amazing. Twitter, particularly in 2010 was a lifeline to me. Of course the internet never sleeps and there’s always something else to do, so I have to strict to have boundaries in my work and home life.

What does motherhood mean to you? ~ Dear Bear & Beany

V: Unconditional, all consuming love. My kids are my world. Motherhood is also bl**** hard work too. Thanks to blogging we can be honest about the tough and the wondrous parts so we don’t feel so isolated and alone.

Mother’s Day is all about treating us hardworking mamas. What do you do for “you time”? ~ Wishes and Wellies

V: I love a great book in the bath and I’m getting a lot better about self care. I even wrote a post (for myself as much as my readers) on it: http://honestmum.com/50-ways-practice-self-care/. I love running and yoga too and try and run most days.

Thank you so much Vicki for sharing your secrets with us all. Wishing you a wonderful Mothers Day, you have well and truly deserved to be spoilt!!

For family, food, style, travel and life, click here to visit Honest Mum online magazine.

 

 

 

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34 Comments

  1. March 23, 2017 / 8:54 pm

    Thanks for having me, real honour x

    • Laura Dove
      March 24, 2017 / 10:31 am

      The honour was all ours, thanks lovely. xx

  2. March 25, 2017 / 5:30 am

    This was fun to read. I’m fairly new to the world of mom blogs, but I’ve heard of Honest Mum. I enjoyed the reader contributed questions, too. I’ve learned something new today.

    • Laura Dove
      March 27, 2017 / 9:11 am

      Thanks Paula. Honest Mum is definitely one to follow! xx

  3. March 25, 2017 / 6:41 am

    Awww lovely interview, probably one of the first parent bloggers that I noticed! Sarah #FabFridayPost

    • Laura Dove
      March 27, 2017 / 9:10 am

      She’s amazing isn’t she? I would love even half of her success! xx

  4. March 28, 2017 / 9:18 am

    wow what a fabulous interview, she is so inspiring. I love that you are doing this Laura you are amazing xx #mg

    • Laura Dove
      March 28, 2017 / 9:23 am

      Ahh thank you so much Mac. I’m assuming you have different Mothers Days than us, but from the UK Happy mothers day lovely lady. xxx

  5. March 28, 2017 / 7:53 pm

    Honest Mum was one of the first people that stood out to me when I first started blogging. It’s lovely to read what goes on behind the scenes as a mother and juggling blogging. #mmbc

    • Laura Dove
      March 29, 2017 / 12:29 pm

      She really is the biggest blogger out there in my eyes, so successful and yet still so down to earth! xx

  6. March 28, 2017 / 8:21 pm

    It’s always so interesting to read what other inspiring ladies have written about when it’s an interview or guest post on another blog! Although I read Vicky’s blog regularly, I feel like I know a little more about her from reading this. Thanks! #mg

    • Laura Dove
      March 29, 2017 / 12:28 pm

      I agree, I love getting to know a little more about the blogger behind the blog! xx

  7. March 30, 2017 / 12:43 pm

    What a lovely post. I enjoyed reading all your questions and all Vicki’s answers 🙂 I agree, Vicki is the most popular blogger I know and is doing so well for herself and her family. Ha, I like the tip about removing the price tag from under your shoes too. I remember a manager from a bar asking me if I had new shoes on. I looked all puzzled at him and said yes why and then he told me I had the label on still lol. (way back my teenage years and I still remember lol )

    • Laura Dove
      March 30, 2017 / 7:46 pm

      Haha I’ve done that a few times! I still forget to check, my mum obviously didn’t teach me that trick! xx

  8. March 30, 2017 / 1:28 pm

    My Goodnes! How is it possible that I haven’t heard of Vicki before! What a refreshing and inspiring interview. I really enjoyed reading it 🙂

    • Laura Dove
      March 30, 2017 / 7:43 pm

      Well you have now, her blog is AMAZING! xx

  9. March 30, 2017 / 4:19 pm

    A lovely read. It is great to share our thoughts, and see how we compare, to see what makes us tick, and what we cherish most. Thank you both.

    • Laura Dove
      March 30, 2017 / 7:42 pm

      Thanks Jen, it was a real honour to have her on the blog, she’s definitely my blogging inspiration! xx

  10. March 30, 2017 / 7:27 pm

    Vicki is such a legend… who can fail to be inspired by her blogging success?!

    Thanks for sharing up with #coolmumclub xx

    • Laura Dove
      March 30, 2017 / 7:38 pm

      Isn’t she just? I would love to be as successful as her one day, but sadly only in my dreams!! xx

    • Laura Dove
      April 3, 2017 / 4:14 pm

      Shes such an inspiration! xx

  11. April 1, 2017 / 5:51 pm

    That was really interesting, love the questions you asked. They really made you get to know her really well, she is a fab blogger and someone to look up too.

    • Laura Dove
      April 1, 2017 / 8:42 pm

      Thanks Stephanie, she’s an amazing blogger! xx

    • Laura Dove
      April 3, 2017 / 4:11 pm

      Thanks Jo. xx

    • Laura Dove
      April 3, 2017 / 4:09 pm

      Thanks lovely! xx

  12. April 2, 2017 / 12:15 pm

    There’s a lot of good advice in this interview that applies even if you’re not a mother. I don’t have any children, but balancing my academics, my writing career and my performance career, it sometimes feels like I do!

    • Laura Dove
      April 3, 2017 / 4:07 pm

      Haha yes, learning to juggle is the first step! xx

  13. April 2, 2017 / 3:05 pm

    What a lovely interview and very inspiring too! Thank you so much for linking up with us on #FabFridayPost x

    • Laura Dove
      April 3, 2017 / 4:05 pm

      Thanks for having me! xx

  14. April 3, 2017 / 6:48 am

    Lovely post, Vicky is an inspirational blogger and so lovely in person too

    • Laura Dove
      April 3, 2017 / 3:49 pm

      Ah I would love to meet her! xx

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