In The Days of Our Lives we meet some fascinating and creative folk and take a look at what their typical day holds. Far from being about the mundane, it is a celebration of what it takes to juggle the day-to-day with big ideas, a successful business and a full home life. It’s about keeping all the balls in the air – what is important and what isn’t. It’s about (extra)ordinary moments that fill our every day.
Let me introduce you to Virginia Scully, a part-time Media Director and mum of two. She is also the co-creator of Charlie and Rosie, a cushion design company that is all about enhancing children’s creativity. Many of the fabrics they use are printed by hand and eco-friendly. Or for a cushion with a truly handmade touch, Charlie and Rosie can create fabric printed with one of your kid’s drawings.
From running around after two kids under two and handmaking cushions with an incredible personal style, to ‘wine time’ with neighbourhood mums and limited edition prints, this is a day in Virginia’s life.
A small hand lands on my face. It belongs to my 2 year old son Charlie. I wake up.
I quickly check for overnight emails and write down those that need addressing or any ideas I have had. I keep a pen and paper by the bed specifically for this purpose. The word “BWEGFOOST (breakfast)” is shouted repeatedly until some porridge or breakfast cereal is served to Charlie. Then the word “chino” pronounced CHINE-O rings out (which means baby cino) then “down”. If Charlie’s high chair tray happens to have a spill (which it always does) – he insists it be wiped up and directs me to the places that need detailing. I eat cereal or toast during this time and my beloved husband, Kman, makes me a “real” coffee… latte with 1.5 teaspoons sugar (.5 for extra energy !)
Grace (8 months) wakes. I feed her, change and dress her, clean up from breakfast and all the while I am being passed random objects, negotiating dangerous situations and answering Charlie’s questions. Often this is with the help of my kind husband who is really hands on in the morning.
Dress Charlie (well chase him around the house for twenty minutes). By this time there is usually at least one nappy change required and so the cycle begins, on a good day we don’t experience any “blow outs” which require a full outfit change.
Kman leaves for work, we say good bye to Daddy. Put Grace in a safe place, and turn on ABC2 so I can shower. This is always touch and go, and regularly I am prematurely forced to get out of the shower to address “a situation” Charlie may have found himself in.
In two weeks at this time I will be also leaving to drop both babies at day care, have a quick cry and then brave peak hour traffic to get my workplace in Richmond (Melbourne) as Media Director at the Sphere Agency by 8.30 am * today we’ll focus on life as it stands for now.
Turn on laptop and check for orders. Schedule my day (write it down in hourly increments). Babies are usually in good form and I often prepare food for lunch (with Charlies help).
The babies both go to sleep (on a good day)
10.00 am -12.00 pm
This is the time I dedicate to responding to emails, researching fabric, sourcing interesting content around creativity and kids, briefing creative partners, and making phone calls (those that need to be made without a screaming child / or a two year old threating to jump if I don’t hang up straight away)
12.00 -1.00 pm
Lunchtime – refer to breakfast but add lunchtime menu and multiply by two, as this is when both Charlie and Grace are propped up at the table with me. I use this time to engage and encourage Grace and Charlie to interact. It is so lovely to watch Grace belly laugh at Charlie placing noodles in his hair. And for all the crazy challenging and totally stressful times I have had, it’s these moments that really fulfil me in ways I didn’t think were possible a few years back.
Our kitchen is a lovely and sunny place to talk and encourage Charlie to think about what he can see out the window and the difference between hot and cold etc. The depth of these conversations is limited due to his age, but he is really interested in the world around him and I am equally as interested in trying to see the world through his eyes.
“Poppy’s truck was drawn by Arabella. Initially Arabella was finding it hard tofind creative inspiration. I asked her mum to start a conversation with her about what was important or special to her. This conversation ended up being about Arabella’s grandfather who has passed away. She decided to draw poppy in his red truck on the farm. This is where our artful and little project becomes a bit more than just making cushions. It encourages creative conversations and activities between parents and children. It rewards children’s art and gives it a place of importance in the home, and perhaps most importantly it captures very special content that might otherwise be lost, overlooked or missed.”
1.00 – 3.00 pm
Depart the house. If fabric needs collecting or orders posted, this is the time I do it. Supermarket visit usually incorporated into this time of day.
3.00 -5.00 pm
This is often labelled as “wine time” as the local mums merge on one another’s homes around Kensington. We use this time to share our stories and our woes. It’s great and special and I have made friends that I will cherish for many years to come.
We are mostly professionals juggling motherhood so we regularly use these sessions to workshop ideas and share solutions. Mums are the best networkers in the universe. They are industrious and use their resources wisely. I often use my “target audience” group to bounce ideas and test and new product ideas. Research companies charge thousands to provide the insights my mum friends offer willingly to help.
5.00 -6.00 pm
Dinner time for Charlie and Grace.
Kman usually arrives home by this time. Bath for the kids, book and bed, we aptly call this period crazy hour (it’s a long way from happy hour).
Bedtime for Grace and Charlie. Dinner prep for Kman and I.
We eat. Then I start work again. This is the only quiet time I have during the day so I use it wisely. Often I do most of my thinking at this time (with a tired brain). I update social media, try to come up with creative ways to incorporate what I do amongst influential people. Sometimes I sew, often I sketch ideas. We only launched in late March so we are very much in “awareness phase”. So I am focussed on reaching design conscious mums and telling them a bit about our brand.
10.00 pm onwards
Go to bed and pray … the babies don’t wake (not likely to be granted).