Mummy Mondays is back with a bang for 2016 and this week we’re kicking off another amazing year with the lovely Sara of @me_and_orla. Her stunningly moody Instagram feed is nothing short of inspiring and it perfectly depicts her loving family life at home with husband and gorgeous little three year old, Orla.
Read on and feel the love through her beautifully honest interview.
Where do you live, and what do you love most about it?
In rural West Yorkshire. I love that it’s wild & ruggedly beautiful - proper ‘Heathcliff’ country.
What inspired you to start an Instagram account?
I was expecting my first baby and liked the idea of a simple daily record of that time in our lives. I’d previously dabbled in photography but was finding myself too busy to use my DSLR, so the iPhone + Instagram model appealed. Once I was at home with a newborn I found the community and interaction a lifesaver, and never looked back!
When did you know you wanted to be a mama?
It was never not on my agenda. I had all this maternal love with no outlet, and I’d pour it all into pets or kids I worked with in Speech Therapy while I waited for my life to catch up. Within months of meeting, my fiancee and I were ready to try for a baby.
How many kiddos do you have and what are there personalities like?
Just one, for now - the 'Orla’ in my IG username. She’s nearly three and fierce, feisty and very funny. Her brain works a lot like mine, so she never forgets anything, takes a little while to weigh up new social situations, and loves to lie around in bed.
How would your husband/partner describe you?
Batty. Funny. Clever. (I just asked).
What inspires you to dress your children in vintage clothes?
I love both the aesthetic, but also the stories - imagining who wore that tiny 50’s day dress before, and what they grew up to become. It’s a sort of quiet magic. That it’s also conveniently a good way to opt out of the wall-to-wall fuchsia pink & cartoon branding on girl’s clothing today is really just a bonus!
If you could go back to any period in time, where would you go and why?
The late 1970s, to kiss beautiful baby-faced Mark Hamill. It legit breaks my heart that he no longer exists like that for me to marry.
Kids wiggle, what is your secret to a good shot of your little one in action?
Lots of light and patience! Or just embrace the wiggles and go for an intentional blur that shows the true hecticness of the moment - then take the pretty portraits while they sleep! ;)
When the going gets tough with the kiddos all in tow, what is your secret for putting the smiles back on those little faces?
Water - be it the bath, shower, paddling pool or just a bowl and towels on the kitchen floor, I find water-play never fails to revive flagging spirits!
What could you imagine your children doing in 20 years time? Traveling, being a doctor, actress… etc.
I picture Orla growing up to be an incredibly tough, independent 20-something - not at all who I was at that same age.
What are your children’s favorite things to do as a family?
Orla has very clear ideas on this - she likes to go for walks in the woods to collect sticks for the fire, and to go to the pub (for chips & fizzy water!). She loves anything where she gets us both all to herself - she’ll sometimes ask for an 'altogether bath’ or 'altogether bedtime story’, & it’s impossible to refuse!
What is the hardest thing about being a mama?
Constantly putting your own needs second. It’s not even an active choice - if she’s hungry or cold or tired or sad, it’s impossible not to prioritise her needs above my own. Sometimes I can get to the end of a day and realise I’ve put my own needs off entirely - delayed hunger and toilet trips and text message replies - but I’m working on finding a middle ground!
And of course, what is your favourite thing about being a mama?
The privilege of watching a whole new person bloom and grow. The very best person I know.
What are some daily rules/mantras do you use for being a mama?
You only need to be 'good enough’, & life is too short for matching socks.
When all the babes are in bed sleeping, what are you most likely doing?
Working! It doesn’t help that evenings are a naturally creative time for me. I’m often found with a glass of wine and my laptop at the kitchen table til the early hours.
If you could take your family anywhere in the world, where would you go?
Right now, Scandinavia is calling my name. That, or a desert island with nobody but us!
Who are some of your favorite instagram users?