Meet Natalie and Holly, together they run The Parent Pause (@theparentpause). They set up their business to help bring parents together and connect on a regular basis through inspirational and topical events in Warwickshire. Between them they have 6 children and plan their business from a kitchen table (once the kids are in bed!).
What inspired you to set up your own business/blog?
The Parent Pause was born out of a frustration at being unable to connect with like-minded parents in our local area for more than just baby chat. With ‘hip’ mum events in big cities like London and Manchester really taking off, we longed for something similar.
These aren’t your usual church-hall style groups, but are aimed at enriching, empowering and elevating mothers by bringing them together to hear inspirational speakers, take part in workshops, interesting talks and stories (child and non-child related), and to generally connect with each other in real-life-full-colour human reality!
Please don’t misunderstand us, there is a clear and important place for church-hall baby/toddler groups where the focus is on the children, the movement we are striving to be a part of moves the focus to the parent. We feel the need to bring parental ‘self-care’ to Warwickshire, but most importantly, bring inclusivity of all caregivers, especially the dads. There’s such a big #sisterhoodinmotherhood movement right now, but we seem to have forgotten about the male contingent. Busy dads, step-dads, stay-at-home-dads, single-dads; we’re all in the same boat. And let’s not forget grandparents, aunts, uncles: in fact, anyone who is raising or caring for children.
The Parent Pause aims to fill that gap that the typical ‘mum’s group’ leaves wide open. We aim to connect, be inclusive and off self-care opportunities for anyone who would like to join in.
How long have you been running your business/blog?
We launched the blog in March 2017. Our launch event was on 12th April.
What is the focus of your business/blog?
We feature anything on the blog that relates to parenthood or things parents may be interested in, as well as lots of personal stories and different perspectives to represent a wide range of views.
What does a typical week look like for you, your business/blog and your family?
Crazy, busy! Rushing around in the mornings as per the standard family household. After the school run, I come home with my children and log-on. I blog / insta and have meetings around my usual mum jobs. Then it’s the school run again before I know it and I don’t manage to get much more done until the children are in bed.
Twice weekly, we spend time together working and planning at The Parent Pause Base Camp (usually one of our kitchen tables!).
How does it all fit around your family life?
The Parent Pause fits around family life very well, but I can find it eating into our time together if I am not strict with logging off and ignoring my phone. It is can be hard to switch off because the lines between life and work are very blurred and before you know it you’ve lost an entire evening editing a blog post or updating social media.
How would you describe your current work / life balance in 3 words?
Happy, hectic and balanced
What 3 bits of advice would you offer to someone wanting to set up a business/blog like yours?
- Do your research and plan
- Get ahead by getting started
- Be consistent
Did anyone inspire you along the way?
Kate Starkey from CheltenhamMaman inspired us because she managed to bring London-style events to Cheltenham, as we now do in Rugby and Warwickshire.
Is there such a thing as the perfect work / life balance?
The perfect formula for life doesn’t exist because what is right for one person, isn’t right for another. Find what works for you and don’t be afraid to change things to make it suit your situation.
And finally, when you get 10 mins to yourself, what are you likely to be doing?
Drinking a G&T or escaping to a spa if I can find more than 10 minutes.
I’ll be joining you with a G&T soon. I like your 3 tips for someone wanting to set up a business like yours – simple and yet so true. Getting started is the hardest part but once you’ve began your journey, you can start to shape your business.
For more inspirational stories, visit my page. My last feature included Natalie of Natalie’s Cake Emporium.