The funny thing is that as I’ve said I never would have invented this business if I had not become a Mum.
So my children and husband are everything to me. The challenge now of course is that RedBalloon is a bigger business with a team of more than 30. And I am travelling regularly.
I met Julian Tertini recently (one of the founders of Freedom Furniture and now Fantastic Furniture) and he was asked a similar question. He said ‘there are times for balance and times where it just takes lot’s of hard work’.
If you are passionate about creating a business it takes 150% commitment and you just can’t give up.
So when I am in Sydney I have to have some pretty strict rules otherwise my children would never see me.
I’m at the dinner table at 6.00 and that is family time, readers home work and hearing the stories of the day. When I am with the children I am really with them, in their world, listening to them. But I do let them know where I have been and what I have been doing. (Oscar loves to invent new experiences). Once they go to bed it is my time to read, finish emails or the other things that I do.
I am the membership chair of The Entrepreneurs Organization Sydney Chapter (EO). That means I get to meet lot’s of other entrepreneurs, share stories and learn from them. About eight hours a week I dedicate to my EO activities. It is so great to share what I’ve learned with other business people too.
This is really not how I thought my life would be. Believe it or not when I was at school I wanted to be an artist. My art teacher said to me I can see you starving in a garret, but I’d be famous after I died. That had no appeal for me at all. So I still paint ? I produce several canvases a year. My home and the RedBalloon office is absolutely covered in art. It is my true escape. (Though I also do a lot of joint art with my children (Natalia 10 and Oscar 8)
I find that at this point in my life I snatch balance. There just is not a lot of time for lying around on the couch and holiday time is even more precious.