How We Balance, Home Educating With Sucessfully Freelancing.

How to step outside the rat race and live a life less ordinary in just a few steps.

Just over a decade ago myself and my husband made some big changes in our lives, we left safe, comfortable jobs, he was in sales, I worked in retail, running a deli. We retrained in completely different areas and began new careers at the same time as beginning home education.

Life beforehand had been a mad rush every weekday to get out the door on time, Sul rushed to be able to drop our eldest off at school each day before his long commute across London to work, not returning until well after our children, then aged 7 and 2 had fallen asleep. Family life was strained and we struggled to make ends meet, we hadn’t had a holiday together for years.

The change came shortly after September 2001. We made some major life differences in our lives after the tragic events of 9/11. Like a lot of people, we began to value our loved ones, time together and to reassess.

It ended up with us changing our lives for the better. Sul used his illustration and art background to begin building websites, doing graphic design, print layouts and video introductions. Every evening after work he’d work into the night to get good enough to secure a paying client big enough to quit the day job.

I trained as a professional Birth Partner/Doula and became an apprentice, I worked with numerous families across London and was privileged to help many mothers birth their babies, an absolutely amazing job. Constantly learning and training, every year I added new skills to my repertoire. Exhausting and ridiculous hours took their toll, though. I missed anniversaries, Birthdays and celebrations to attend mothers. I finally hung up my Doula bag for good in January 2014.

Our children are now nearly all grown up, they’ve each gone into an industry they enjoy. Home education and the freedom of working freelance has given us time to nurture their individual talents and for their confidence to grow.

Together we’ve enjoyed a holiday almost every year, sometimes more, trips up and down the country to museums and historical places of interest. Summer holidays that go on over 3 months and long winter evenings together.

It’s been wonderful and I’d like to share with you all how we’ve managed it, answering common questions along the way and letting you into our secrets, tips and tricks from:

  • Mistakes we made in business and how to avoid them
  • How to successfully time manage to ensure you make the most of every day.
  • How to de-register your child from UK school and where to begin with Home Education.

All this and more will be answered in detail in the following posts throughout January 2017.

Change is good 🙂

What to look for in a Doula.

I’ve been working as a professional birth partner or doula for nearly 10 years, heres my top ten tips for choosing the best doula for you.
Congratulations you are making a smart choice by deciding to hire a doula.


1, Word of mouth, if you’re recommended a doula by a friend or family member then make sure to contact her.

2, Avoid any doula with hidden extras, the doula who charges you for the cab to the birth or who will add costs to your bill for her food and drink during the birth. Ask about costs.

3, The doula with “DOULA” branding, its fine to pass a card or leaflet but I’m suspicious of doulas who wear t shirts with their logo and number on.

4, A control freak doula, I’ve witnessed a doula tell a women “your birth will be s*** if you don’t hire me ” eek run, run from this kind of doula.

5, The same goes for if your doula has a negative attitude to anything you want, its YOUR birth not hers.

6, The doula who talks endlessly about how perfect her births were, this is YOUR birth. Its your story not hers. Good doulas try to never mention their own births incase it influences their clients choices in anyway.

7, Hire a doula who has trained with a respected expert, I did my course with Michel Odent a retired OB who attended thousands of natural births as well as medicated births,There are many great courses but there are also lots of crap ones, do a bit of research, many many people are “training” doulas, the truth is there is no course that can prepare your for working with women the way actually getting to births will.

8, Consider whether you need a doula, do you need to hire a doula? I’m not suggesting you substitute your mother or sister,(many a birth has been stalled because the mothers mother is around!) eeek ! I’m suggesting that after reading about birth, watching videos on natural birth and believing in your body’s ability to birth that you might find that you hire a doula and when you go into labour never get round to calling her ! This isn’t an issue for most doula’s as they usually cover this in their contract or agreement. As the client you need to ask about what if I don’t call you to the birth? Some doulas will charge full price, some a percentage and some just the deposit, take into account that the toughest part of the job of birth partner is being on call, 24/7 for weeks on end its exhausting.

9, Do NOT hire a doula who has a negative attitude to midwives or other health professionals, i’ve heard of doulas telling clients to go against the recommendations of midwives, its ok to question why a decision is being made or ask for time to think but to refuse on the say so of a doula is not on. Doulas are NOT health professionals, we are hired to secure your emotional well being.

10, Be wary of doulas who don’t use a contract or agreement of any kind, they often change their minds or fail to turn up when called to a birth and you could be left out of pocket.

I love love love attending births its an honour and a privilege and I remember every single birth I’ve attended.