Welcome to this weeks Meet the Working Mum Interview. Today we meet Victoria Sully. Victoria is self employed, with a little cleaning job in the side, and works full time on her blog Lylia Rose.
If you have missed any of the previous interviews, or if you are new to this series, check out all the other Meet the Working Mum’s.
An intro and a little bit about you, your family and where you live.
My name is Victoria and I live with my husband and our two children on the outskirts of Gloucester.
What do you do for a job? Is it what you have always wanted to do?
My main income is now from blogging. It’s not something I ever dreamed of doing, although I did like writing as a child. It’s randomly happened through running another small business. It’s now definitely what I want to do. I also work part time in the evening as a cleaner to provide a regular income in case I have a quiet self-employed job. That’s definitely not something I wanted to do, but it fits around everything else and it’s great exercise!
What was your motivation to return to work?
Money is the main factor as I hate worrying about money. I also need to keep my mind active and have a project to work on constantly. I’m a bit of a workaholic so need to get stuck in to something.
How many hours do you work a week?
Approximately 50, but it can vary slightly.
Do you have to travel far from where you live to where you work?
I work from home mainly, but three evenings a week I travel 5 miles to my cleaning job. This was five evenings, but I’ve just cut this down as it was too much with everything else.
If you use public transport what do you do to pass the time on your commute?
I have a car so travel to work by myself. I’m not sure there’s a bus route directly to where I work. If I did need to use the bus I’d spend the time working on my self-employed business on my phone answering emails, looking for work or updating social media.
What do you do for childcare? Does this work for you?
My daughter is at school and I have my son at home with me most of the time. He goes to nursery and play school for a total of 10.5 hours a week which frees up 3 mornings for me to get as much work done as possible. Things will be a lot easier when he goes for longer hours, but it’s just too expensive until he gets his 15 hours free or I get more work.
What does your morning routine look like? What do you do to get you all out of the house on time?
It’s always manic. We’re up at 6am, but we still struggle to leave on time! Those last 10-15 minutes are always the worst. My son will need a nappy change and my daughter will decide she doesn’t want to go to school and refuse to put her coat on! My husband is up at 6am and showers, then I shower after. He leaves for work at 7am. I then have breakfast with the children and attempt to work from 7-8am. Then it’s tidy up time, coats and school shoes on and gathering everything everyone needs – water bottles, book bags, change bags, etc. We aim to leave the house at 8.45am, but it’s usually 8.50am and a very speedy walk to school. My youngest goes to the playgroup attached to the school two mornings a week. The morning he is at nursery we’ll travel by car at 8am to drop him off as it’s a little farther. On this day Bella and I will read a school book in between dropping Reuben off and the school run as we have 45 minutes to ourselves.
What do you like about being a working mum?
I like having some spending money each month and not struggling. There were a couple of months before I got my cleaning job when my self-employed income was really low and we really had to budget just living off my husband’s wage. It stresses me out if I have to worry about money or food shopping budgets are really tight. I like to have enough so we can enjoy family days out or treat ourselves to a meal out every now and then. If I didn’t work, we wouldn’t be able to have any spending money at all.
What don’t you like about being a working mum?
I feel guilty when I go to my employed job and miss my children’s bedtimes and bath times. I feel like I should be there for those special times and I’m missing out.
What would you change? Hours you work, commute you have to make etc.
I’d probably stop my employed job and work entirely from home. I have just cut down my days from 5 to 3 which has been my choice and I think it will provide a better work-life-blog balance.
What three tips would you pass onto a mum about to start back at work?
1. Don’t feel guilty
2. It’s OK to enjoy being back at work and having adult time to yourself
3. Remember you’re doing what you feel is best for you and your family, ignore opinionated people
For fun show us a picture of your work handbag – what make is it and what’s the most unworkable thing in it I.e. Kids hair accessories, toy cars etc.
As I mainly work at home I don’t have a ‘work’ handbag. I also don’t take one to my evening job and just shove my keys and phone in my pocket!
Thank you so much for taking part in the Meet the Mum interview series Victoria. Balancing everything is hard work, and I can imagine that is doubly hard when you are self employed. It sounds like though that you have worked out what’s working for you and your family.
If you would like to be featured in my Meet the Working Mum series send an email to:- firstname.lastname@example.org