After two weeks of Easter break I’m back with a new interview. Enjoy!
What are my #Supermamas interviews about?
Initially, I thought Im going to do a few interviews in the couple of weeks leading up to Mother’s Day. But then I realised that I know so many fantastic Supermamas, that I will keep running these series. My weekly interviews are about mums, who have given up their professional life after becoming a parent and decided to do something completely different for living. In these interviews real women are telling me about their journey of becoming a mother how they have changed their way of thinking about work, pursuing dreams and making money.
I came up with this idea when I realised that I’m lucky to know so many wonderful women. I really am surrounded by #supermamas. Most of all: my own mama. She started an evening course at the university and she was reading law when she was pregnant with me. By the time I was in pre-school, she graduated summa cum laude and became a lawyer! And others too: friends, blogging buddies and creative business owners I have met lately. They are juggling it all: looking after the children, having a newly found profession, running a new business and inspiring us. Their stories are a real inspiration to everyone.
I truly believe when a child is born, a mother is born too. And so we change. We grow, learn and become stronger. We should embrace all these changes and use their power to nurture, create and find our passion. So these mums took risks, pushed themselves, overcame self consciousness, challenged themselves again and again until they found their very own path to balance. My Supermamas Interviews are about them.
#Supermamas Interview Series: introducing Cath from Passports and Adventures (formerly BattleMum)
Can you please introduce yourself?
Hi, I’m Cath and I blog at Passports and Adventures – formerly BattleMum . My blog originally started as a parent and lifestyle blog but changed last year to become a family travel and lifestyle blog. The reason for this was we moved to Portugal last May and I was starting to write about our move in more detail, plus I was blogging more about our days out and travel than anything else. So it was a natural progression.
What did you want to be when you grew up?
I went through a few things from being a doctor (thanks St Elsewhere) to a lawyer (LA Law). But when I was 14 or 15 I settled on wanting to become a scientist.
What did you do before becoming a mum?
Well, I actually did become a scientist, although I went into the field of Chemistry rather than Biology, which was where I had wanted to go when I was younger. Before becoming a mum, I was an analyst, testing all manner of things. I worked for a company who did chemical testing within the pertrochemical industry (think diesel and petrol) as well as chemical testing for local authority and other companies. And it was a job I loved.
Why did you leave that job?
I only left that job a year ago when we made the decision to emigrate to Portugal. I would still be there now if we were still living in the UK as it was a job I loved and I had finally gotten flexible hours that worked around my son.
What do you do now?
Much to my own surprise I am now a stay at home mum and full-time blogger, although I don’t make any money from my blog. I am currently doing a course alongside my husband in the hope we can create a business out of it that will keep me busy alongside my blog.
What are you passionate about?
Travelling, and writing about it. That’s where my passion lies now. I am constantly thinking about our next holiday destination. Having the freedom of not working and a husband who can work from anywhere, my passion for travelling is growing stronger. The only thing stopping us travelling full-time is our much beloved German Shepherd.
Where do you find inspiration?
My travel inspiration comes from fellow travel bloggers, the kind that travel a lot more than we do. I love reading about where they are going with their kids and why. I also love following them on Instagram for my daily feed of pictures from far flung places. I also get a lot of travel inspiration from Pinterest. General inspiration comes from all sources including family, friends and non-travel bloggers.
Did you learn to say no?
It has taken a long time, but I am confident enough to be able to say no in certain situations. From a blog perspective I say no a lot of the time. I also hear myself saying no a lot to our son, but what mum doesn’t!
How did you overcome uncertainties and self-doubt?
I am the eternal pessimist and worry about all sorts of things. My husband often has to keep my over-active imagination in check, particularly since we moved to Portugal. I worry about the slightest thing and often it is unfounded. I don’t think I ever overcome uncertainties until they are past and no longer something to worry about.
I don’t have a lot of self-doubt these days. I used to but meeting my husband was a game changer. Somehow, he helped me grow as a person and I gained a confidence that continues to grow with age. I think as we get older we gain a certain level of confidence that comes with experience that we just don’t have when we’re younger.
Did you have to convince your family about making the leap? Or did they support you from the very beginning?
When it came to leaving the UK, my husband was the one who first suggested emigrating to Portugal. It took a while for him to wear me down, but we did it in the end. Once we had made the decision he helped me draft my letter of resignation and supported me until everything was sorted with my employer.
As for my blog, he actively encouraged me to start one when I floated the idea around, even going so far as to set up my domain and hosting, so I was self-hosted from the start. That is something I am so grateful to him for.
What’s your latest project?
As a blogger, I am in the midst of trying to grow my blog. That is my mail goal for the year. So far, I’m doing ok. Family wise we are looking forward to some great trips this year, all while trying to learn Portuguese. Our son is doing great as he is immersed in the language in school, but us adults aren’t doing too badly either.
Name a thing (or two) you used to give a shit about – but not anymore:
When I was younger I used to care what people thought of me and my looks. That is something I rarely give a shit about anymore. That confidence I spoke about already, it has helped me in this part of my life.
As for my blog, I used to really care about people liking it and my stats, but since the start of the year (and joining a great blogging monthly membership group) I no longer get hung up on trying to attract loads of people. I know those who do read my blog are interested and that I am creating useful content and my stats are actually improving, despite publishing less times a week than before Christmas.
Fill in with the first work that comes to your mind:
I believe in….karma. Good deeds will be noticed and rewarded, while unkindness and bad deeds will come back to bite you. I’ve seen both sides of the story and fully believe in karma.
My super power is….Organisation, particularly when it comes to travelling. My husband says he doesn’t need to worry about where we’re going next or how it’s going to happen because I have it under control. Very true!
Being ethical means to me…trying to buy from the right sources. Thinking before making a purchase.
Right now I am most excited about….Our forthcoming road trips this year. My son and I are off to Ireland for 10 days over Easter, while as a family we will be touring southern Spain at the end of the summer. Oh, and a little trip to Lapland to see Santa in December.
My dream job is….Probably what I am doing now. Blogging about travel which hopefully will inspire more families to travel, even when their kids are young.
The most important thing I can teach my child is….Be kind to others, treat them as you wish to be treated, respect the world and to travel as much as his wallet will allow!
Cath is an Irish expat who now lives in Portugal with her husband and son. A former scientist, she gave up working when they emigrated south from the UK. She is a family travel and lifestyle blogger and hopes that, through her blog, they will inspire more families to travel, especially with the toddlers in tow. As a family they love travelling and have started working their way through their family travel bucket list. Cath writes about their family travels and experiences on her blog BattleMum.
If you’re interested reading more inspiring interviews from my #Supermamas series, try this maybe: #Supermamas Interview Series: Introducing Kate from Kate on Thin Ice