A Mother Place Crosby is passionate about championing and celebrating local inspirational mamas who are pushing the boundaries and proving that being a mum doesn’t need to define you or stop you from following your dreams.
In the latest ‘Inspirational Mama’ interview series we go behind the scenes with Sarah from New Mumma Photography to chat all things being a working mum, finding the ever elusive work life balance and what constitutes Sarah’s #AMotherDayInParadise.
Tell us a little bit about yourself and New Mumma Photography?
I’m Sarah, I’m 34 and mum to a 2 year old little boy. I set up New Mumma Photography whist I was on maternity leave. My style of photography is very natural and relaxed.
As a mum you can tell when you look into your child’s eyes if they are happy or not. Children are happiest when they are in their own environment, doing their own activities and having fun.
New Mumma Photography is all about capturing children in that moment when they are having fun and are most comfortable.
What was your light bulb moment for setting up ‘New Mumma Photography’?
When we had our little boy we actually paid for a newborn photo shoot even though I have a degree in photography! At 9 days old and with a baby who wasn’t sleeping for longer than 40 minutes day or night (!!) I dragged myself out of the house and along to the photographer’s studio.
All I could think of was… How tired and worn out I was, and couldn’t even be bothered to put makeup on, how I just wanted to stay in my pjs, let alone remembering to take props. At the time I also didn’t want my new little bundle to be taken out of the comfort his own home. So not long after I had the idea to set up, New Mumma Photography.
I wanted to give new Mums the experience I never had and wished I had have had. An experience that was easy, stress free and didn’t involve using much energy or brain power 🙂 I also wanted to give Mums an alternative to the usual newborn posed photos; something which was a bit more natural.
What’s been your biggest challenge?
Juggling everything! Trying to find time to fit in all the demands and expectations of a modern mum! There is a lot of pressure on mums nowadays to have a career, run a house, do the cooking and cleaning, walk the dogs etc.
People think you fly through motherhood and when you see all these other mums on Instagram looking like they have it all together it’s just not true!
Behind those images I think every mum feels that pressure and expectation, and the constant battle of whether we’ve made the right decision, and then feeling guilty about it.
So how do you juggle being a working mum with the demands of family life?
You have to figure out what is actually the most important thing and prioritise it and not put pressure on yourself. My Nan gave my Mum some advice about fitting everything in which she has now passed onto me…
“Some things just have to wait! Try to do 1 thing or 1 job a day, as long as you feel up to it.”
It’s why my house only gets a brief clean sometimes… there are more important things higher up in the to do list!
How do you find time for yourself?
That first year of being a mum baby just needs you. Being a mum changes you massively and it can be hard to get to the point where as a woman you remember who you were before you became a mum. But it’s so important to find time for yourself, even something as simple as reading a book.
Slowly but surely I started doing things for me, not just when Oliver was napping but purposely leaving him with his dad to go out and have some mummy time out.
There’s a lot of mum guilt leaving him, especially at the weekend when it should be ‘family time’, but it does get easier so now I try at least once a week to do something for me whilst Oliver is in bed or once a month go out and do something.
What is your ideal #AMotherDayInParadise?
Speaking of doing something just for me, recently I went for a facial and a massage… it was so lovely that I didn’t want to leave! I could have stayed there all day!
Other things I like to do is go to a local meditation class which really helps me wind down and switch the brain off from everything. I also used to be a runner so I do try to go out for a run even if it’s just a few miles.
Who inspires you?
My mum Christina. As a mum you have so many emotive responses to different things. Now I’m a mum I realise and appreciate just what my own mum must have felt and what she went through.
What’s been your most memorable photo shoot and why?
I was booked for a little girls 1st birthday photoshoot. The mum just wanted one photo from it and said she didn’t want me to waste her time or my own, by me trying to sell her more images. My response was I didn’t need to pressure her into buying anything. So I went round, photographed her daughter and we really enjoyed the morning.
In the end the mum loved the natural style of photography so much she did end up buying more images than she had planned to.
Knowing that the mum was really happy with the images and hadn’t felt pressured into buying more, but actually wanted to buy more, meant I must have done something right!
What’s your favourite location for a photo shoot?
The beach or the pinewoods. Kids are happiest when doing what they like doing whether at home with their toys or out somewhere like the beach or in the woods.
When kids are relaxed in those environments that’s when you see the natural sparkle in their eyes and that’s what New Mumma Photography is all about: capturing that fleeting moment, which may only last a split second, but where most people are too busy to take it all in, or simply forget to take a picture.
What’s next for New Mumma Photography?
To continue doing what I’m doing. I want to stay true to myself and the style of photography that I believe in.
I have a lot on over the coming months. In amongst my usual bookings I’ll also be photographing the NHS The Big Latch On event this year, as well as doing pumpkin picking photoshoots again during October.
If you are interested in booking a relaxed natural photography shoot with Sarah either in the comfort of your own home or somewhere on location then get in touch with her via…
For more #InspirationalMama stories, #SanitySavingSuggestions with and without the mini humans in tow and much more follow ‘A Mother Place Crosby’ on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter