#MYGRACETALE: Simone Duckworth, Blogger, Mother To Finn, Jasper & Noah

#MYGRACETALE: Simone Duckworth

Simone Duckworth with her son Noah.

“Motherhood has shown me more love and happiness than I've ever thought possible…
It has also taught me to live in the moment and appreciate the little things. Instead of hurrying through the day to the next activity, I try to see things from my children’s point of view and show interest and take the time when they want to stop and look at the ladybug in the park or go outside and look at the rainbow. It has taught me patience and selflessness. I want to be part of the things that they are passionate about so I learn the names of Thomas the Tank Engine and his friends or who is surfing in the latest World Tour contest so we can talk about it.

I do think children are happier with structure…
They are creatures of habit and feel comfortable when they know what is coming next and so do I! I've followed routines with all of the boys. I found Save our Sleep by Tizzie Hall worked perfectly for us as it seemed to fit in with their natural meal times and sleep habits. I also liked knowing when I could schedule in work, a phone call or a trip to the shops. Obviously now that the boys are older, we're a little more relaxed with things although Noah, 3, still has a 1 hour sleep/rest time and is in bed at 7pm.

I used to work in hospitality…
Everything from managing restaurants to organising conferences and events but left to be a stay at home mum when I had Finn. Later I went back into retail (more flexible hours) working at Freedom and became interested in furniture/homewares and interior decoration. Honey And Fizz originally was my online mood board, but opened up into opportunities of selling my own prints and banners and working with different brands. I'm about to launch a service utilising my love of interiors and styling by setting up home consultations for styling and online design boards. I love the freedom and flexibility of working from home and for myself. I like that each day is different and I can use my creative side and work with things that I'm passionate about.


Now that the boys are older it is a little easier…
The two eldest are at school and Noah is at pre-school three days a week. I usually don't look at my emails until 9.30am once the school run is done, but once I start I'm quite aware how fast the day flies until school pick up time at 3pm. Usually the night before, I put together a list of what I want to achieve and a loose running schedule. I don't get a chance to do any work in the afternoon as I'm taking the boys to their after school activities and helping with homework, so I might check my emails and do any other work once they're in bed.

My family comes first and I try to fit my work in around it…
I snatch time for myself with a couple of hours here and there by grabbing a coffee with a friend or getting a massage. Something that allows me to stop and not think of anything else. Although I always feel like I'm working to a clock and thinking of the next thing I have to do. My husband works Saturdays, so I feel like we really only have Sunday as a family and I'm quite protective of this time together. We will usually do a family outing or go out for lunch and just relax and reconnect after a busy week.


We have a modern style home that we built 13 years ago…
It has four bedrooms, two living areas and a fantastic backyard. We love to entertain outside when it's warm and it is really set up for that with an undercover area, BBQ and pool. The back of the house opens up completely, so you really get that indoor/outdoor living feeling. The boys love playing outside and it's a bit of a boy’s paradise out there with the trampoline, pool, and their own half pipe. I don't know who loves it more, the boys or my husband Simon!

My decor style at the moment could be called white and bright…
I love neutral backgrounds with colourful books, flowers, cushions, throws. It's decorated with things that we love. I wanted a fresh, calm look. Home is where we truly relax and with life so busy these days, it's nice to have a place that gives you that calm feeling when you walk through the door. I wanted lots of plants and greenery and to be surrounded by the things that make me happy such as favourite books, prints, fresh flowers and photos. Also I wanted a home that reflects us and our tastes as a young family.


I find I'm doing more of my shopping online…
Instagram is a great way to find new stores and products. Down That Little Lane, Little Letter Lights Co, My Messy Room, Lark store, Rachel Castle and Blacklist Studio are a few favourites. Although I still love a browse around the shops. Domayne, Freedom, Adairs and Ikea always has something I love and they change their stock frequently. My lightbox by Page Thirty Three was from Koskela and it is one of my favourite things and always gets lots of comments. I'm always changing the message up.

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I come across cute ideas on Pinterest and love to try them out on the boys for afternoon tea sometimes…
It is what they would usually eat but just served up in a different way. It's a bit of fun for us all and you can't imagine how much fruit and vegetables they eat when it is served in a cute way. The boys all come home from school starving, so I try to have something ready to go. Usually they will have either fruit, veggie sticks, muffins or sushi. We all still eat dinner together at around 5.30 - 5.45pm. Something we've been doing since the boys were little. I can't remember what it was like to eat at 7pm!

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We all love the beach…
In the summer holidays you will find us there every day. My husband is a keen surfer and has managed to instill that love in all of the boys, so they all love to get out in the surf. We all love swimming in the ocean but I might have to take up surfing myself if I want to spend time with them when they're older. We live near the beach but all our holidays are beach holidays too! We go to Byron Bay twice a year and that is a place that we all love and time we look forward to. We're just about to chase the sun and surf in Bali next week. We can't wait!".

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Simone’s little list of loves:
All the boys are into books and one of my favourite things to do is go to a book store and let them pick out something they want to read. I smile when I see them opening up their books in the car on the way home as they can't wait to dive into them!
Drinking pots of green tea, it's the perfect way to warm up during winter.
I love to get a facial every couple of months. It's so relaxing and a bit of ‘me’ time.
Going to the movies with my husband, the latest movies we saw were Dior and I and Entourage. Total opposites of each other but both great in their own way.
I love the planning of holidays and putting together the perfect itinerary. We’re looking at taking the boys to Disneyland/LA towards the end of the year.
I love combining catching up with a friend and exercising. Lately we've been doing the Queenscliff to Shelley Beach walk and then stopping for breakfast afterwards. The omelette at Pure Wholefoods is a favourite.
On Friday's I love wandering around the growers' market. It's great to have everything in the one place. Fruit, veggies, fresh bread, a bunch of flowers for the house and maybe a cake or some kind of treat for the weekend.
This winter weather is conducive to snuggling down with a good book and I'm just about to start reading Girl on a Train by Paula Hawkins.
Baking with the boys, anything chocolate is a favourite.
Sunday mornings. I love a slow, lazy morning with nowhere to be and the whole day stretching out before you.

Follow @honeyandfizz

-As told to The Grace Tales. 

The #mygracetales series puts the focus on the lives and routines of The Grace Tales’ wonderful and inspiring community of readers.