CLAIRE JEFFREYS Two monkeys and a stork.

Mum and company.

AGE 33

HOMETOWN   Prestwick, Ayrshire, Scotland

* International Parent Profile! Hooray! *

@TWITTER   @claireejeffreys

ON THE WEB

At Least Daddy Can Cook.blogspot.com

Storkup.com

RELATIONSHIP STATUS   Married

NUMBER OF CHILDREN   Two

DAY JOB   Mum and co-founder of StorkUp

FAVORITE CHILDREN’S BOOK

We all love the Julia Donaldson/Axel Scheffler books. My favourite is Monkey Puzzle, my husband likes The Gruffalo, and my son loves A Squash and a Squeeze. My daughter is still a little young for them. I can’t wait to read them to her for the first time! The stories are so clever and the illustrations are fantastic. I remember reading the Janet and Allan Ahlberg books (such as Peepo and Each Peach Pear Plum) when I was a child, and I love that my children enjoy them too.

HOW DO YOU COMBINE WORK AND FAMILY?

It’s a constant juggling act! My husband works away a lot, so it’s often just me and my two little monkeys.

I work like mad when they are at nursery, and make sure I shut down my laptop and focus on my most important job (being a mum) when they are home. As soon as they are in bed, the laptop comes out again! It’s not easy, but it’s worth it. It can be difficult when my husband comes home from a business trip and wants to spend lots of “quality family time” together, when all I want to do is pass the kids to him and go to bed (for several hours). It’s a learning curve — we’re getting there…

HOW HAS PARENTING CHANGED YOU AS AN INDIVIDUAL?

Being a mum has made me more anxious, which I hate, but I think it’s a common curse of parenthood. I was more carefree when I only had myself to worry about. Now I have two very precious little people to take care of, and at times I feel terrified about keeping them safe. On the other hand, being a mum has given me more confidence. I feel like I know what really matters, and try not to get caught up with the two million little things that really don’t matter all that much.

WHAT IS YOUR WORST PARENTING MOMENT?

Any time one of my kids is ill. My son was hospitalised with croup twice when he was a toddler. I hate feeling like I can’t do anything to make them feel better.

One really horrible moment was when we lost my son in the local supermarket. My husband and I were both distracted (probably bickering over vegetables). One second my son was there, the next he wasn’t. It took several minutes to find him, and I thought my heart was going to jump out of my chest. I have never been so happy to see his little face. (He was fine, by the way – happily skipping up and down the aisles without a care in the world…)

WHAT IS YOUR BEST PARENTING MOMENT?

There are too many to choose just one. Every time my son tells me I’m his best friend. When my daughter’s face lights up when I arrive to collect her from nursery. When I wake up in the morning to find a child on either side of me.

Lisa D

Lisa Duggan is the founder of The Modern Village, and publisher of TheParentduJour.com and TheMotherHoodBlog.com.

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