This month’s featured biz mum is Luci from Luci’s Family Daycare. In this feature, Luci takes us through her life, business & motherhood journey, her business success and how she juggles the biz mum lifestyle.
Tell us about you and your family
Hi, I’m Luci, a mum of two ‘superstar’ kids, a wifey to the best hubby ever, and a Daycare Educator to some cherubs I almost consider family. I am also an Aunty to many, some of which live nearby, and frequently ‘do life’ with me. The aunty ‘load’ is considerable in my normal week, sporadic and naturally so. This means nieces/nephews pop by often to complete assignments or homework, to play, or just to chill with us- this is part of my day to day life.
My two children are Lily; my creative, ambitious, driven, soulful, networking queen and free spirit; and Hunter; clever, witty, social leader and sporting genius.
‘Recently’ married to the best hubby in the world, I get to call all mine- Tim . Three years on, but we are still stuck in the honeymoon phase- oh, I love us. I live in Goonellabah, NSW- a beautiful part of the world. After growing up out of town, I appreciate the convenience of living 2 short minutes from the shops, it’s great!
Tell us about your amazing business
I am currently in my 4th year of my dream job- running my own Family Daycare. After seven years teaching experience, I worked my way down from year 12, high school, to primary teaching and now daycare. During my years of studying to teach High school PDHPE, I never dreamt of teaching little primary aged children, let alone caring for children 0-4 yrs. Nonetheless, it is my teaching experience that paved my way here. I loved every moment of teaching, but my desire to teach creatively and allow for natural expression led me to change my career path. And here I am. I love it. I absolutely love what I do.
On that note, I finished teaching in 2013 in a pursuit to explore a new avenue. I bought a house here in Goonellabah NSW to cater to my new home based business, retrained, set up and opened on day 1, term 1, 2014. In a nutshell, I started Daycare to take a risk, try something new, in a pursuit to experience more freedom in how I do what I do. What I love most about my job is by far the freedom to do what I want, how I want. I know I can truly give my full potential to a job this way, and I love that.
What does a typical day look like for you as a biz-mum?
A typical day for me is a combination of mayhem and harmony to be honest. I develop a weekly program over the weekend or on Monday, depending on when I feel inspired which helps prepare me for the week ahead. I also complete a weekly planner for my family ‘life’ each week, from which I can ensure that I have time for everything. I plan to successfully survive my crazy busy week somewhat peacefully.
On a typical day, the ‘skates are on’ from the moment I wake; making beds, packing lunches, tidy/pack up bathroom, complete a quick daily hazard check, eg. Gates/doors are key locked, cleaning products/washing detergents are locked away, no mess, house is presentable- all by 7.50am of course.
Between 8am-9am I am juggling welcoming children and families upon arrival, settling them in, packing their things away, while taking any spare moments to get my son out the door and insert happy moments of ‘I love you, be amazing day, don’t forget your soccer boots for training’ type of sentiments.
By 9am, little hands have managed to pull the place apart, so we do a quick tidy up *insert pack up time song* and we gather ourselves with a group time on the mat. From there, our morning consists of art and crafts, creative play, until the grass is dry enough for our outdoor messy paint and mud play time (for example). Morning tea and clean up, bottles for a baby have all happened somewhere amongst all that glorious mayhem and by 11am, we are ready for a serious wash off, fresh clothes on (other in the machine for a quick wash), lunch, discussion and story time. By now you will find me emptying my third cold cup of tea for the morning!
After lunch, the children take themselves to wash hands and ‘choose their blankies’ for rest time, followed by music, audio books or a movie- depending ont he time, day, ages, weather, anything really.
Now is my 2 hours of mental break- cleaning, hanging washing, emptying dishwasher, washing lunch containers, packing bags up, collecting personal teddies and shoes from a hidden basket in the toy room etc happens, before I make a hot cup of tea, and drink it as I reflect on each child’s day so far, their developmental milestones, their ‘world’ right now; and I begin to document a learning story on each of them, along with all the daily information (moods/meals/nap times/activities) which will compile their ‘daily report’ to be emailed that afternoon to each parent. This leaves me time to quickly set up a simple activity for afternoon time- usually my intentional teaching time eg. Writing and drawing/ alphabet songs and puzzles/gross motor skills- depending on the children’s needs etc that day.
By 3pm, we have afternoon tea and continue with quiet play activities until parents arrive. By now the house is clean, calm and quiet- energy has been well spent!
5pm- close doors, meal prep, hit the gym!
6pm- family time.
9pm- catch some z’s.
6am- wake, and repeat…
My days are busy but harmonious- and I put it all down to planning!
What is your favourite self-care practice?
My favourite self care practise is… the gym. Making that happen requires serious commitment and scheduling! There are no waking hours to spare in my days! Some weeks I rock it, others, I fail – however, I always gain in some other way, eg. Needing extra sleep perhaps? In which case, I count my blessings, and move forward!
What are your top 3 strategies for achieving work/life harmony?
Achieving work life harmony for me is essential- my top 3 strategies are
- PLAN, PLAN, Plan my time.
- Write it all down- lists, diaries, calendars, programs- I’m a paper girl, I need visuals, and I need to see it written to make it happen!
- Let it go- if it’s just not happening for me that day, let something go (a task, perfection, the plan). I have to let it go and move forward or I can let incomplete tasks or imperfections in my day cause me too much stress!
What has been your proudest moment in business to date?
My proudest moment was receiving the Northern Rivers Family Daycare award for ‘Professionalism’ in my first year as an Educator 2015. My heart does skip a beat though, each time I observe a child conquering new milestones that we have strived toward so intentionally- this fills my heart with pride.
Tell us about a big goal you’re currently working towards?
My biggest goal that I’m working toward at the moment is holiday booking and planning for 2017. This requires much thought and consideration for me, given the nature of my business. While I am lucky enough to have my own mum provide relief care for me when needed, I have to consider each child, how they have transitioned and the timing of my holidays, so with this in mind, I’m at the dreaming/discussing stage of planning a short 1 week getaway sometime next year.
What mantra are you living by right now?
Be true to yourself
Doing what I love has never been so rewarding and it has been the foundation of my business- to provide a service that is simply an expression of who I am, and with that, comes success.
Where can we find you?
You can find me:
(I keep my business page private for parents only).
Tash’s Note: You can also find and communicate with Luci in our Life, Business Motherhood Biz Club if you’d like to continue this conversation.