Monday Mother: Louise Smith, Co-Founder of Cockle Crew

We love it when women come together, we love it when motherhood sparks creativity and connection, and we LOVE local business, so this is pretty fab. Meet Louise…

I have three children of 6, 3 and nearly one who keep me very busy. I love to see friends, read, meet new people, watch Netflix and I’m a bit of a local history geek. I’m a bit of a meddler by admission, if I can help someone or connect them with someone else I am all over it. I can. see myself in the WI in years to come! I have lived in Leigh for three and a half years and have loved every minute, the people, the coffee and the brunches!!

Before I had children I worked as a PA for social services in Thurrock and later as a Transformation Support Officer for the same department. I loved the job and working for a team that actually made a difference to people’s day to day lives. I was able to continue to do this until recently.

When this came to an end I was devastated as I enjoyed the independence and the opportunity to talk about real stuff outside of Disney junior and lol dolls (even though I do love these things). My friend Lauren Hatton and I (who I met in reception year when our children were in cockles class) took our children to McDonald’s one night after school *collective gasps (no judgements please) we had a moment of inspiration over Happy Meals. I think my exact words to Lauren were ‘come on we are intelligent women, what could we do and smash wide open?’ This was the point Cockle Crew was conceived. We are named after the class our kids met it. Our kids have now affectionately been dubbed the #minicocklecrew.

I am driven by my obsessive personality (ocd diagnosis, not just throwing the term about). I’m the obsessive chaser and social media queen, Lauren is all about the detail, presentation and the small print. You should see her packaging. My efforts look like a small child has been involved. She’s kind of the the Yin to my yang, which is why we work.

The biggest challenge is definitely mum guilt. Having a business takes a lot of time and effort which means less time playing with the barbie camper van.

I’m most proud of how far we have both come (Lauren and I) have both suffered with anxiety issues following having children, I won’t bore you all with the details but it was grim at times. We have both recovered following support of family, friends and each other. However being a parent can be a daily battle even though it is the best job in the world and I love my children more than chocolate brownies.

Our future plans are to grow organically, continue to be excited by our business and support the shit out of each other and other women who are doing it like a mother.

As a new mum I would tell myself to chill the hell out. It all comes out in the wash. The best example we can set to our children is to be yourself and that life does present challenges, but we can weather each storm and grow stronger each time. Half of the stuff I have learned from being a mum has shaped me into who i am today. Who the hell was I before?!

To relax I like to read angel cards, google stuff and make the odd trip to ugos, usually laden with iPads and raisins.

Come find this:

Facebook cockle crew
Insta cockle.crew

You know we run a group for women in business, right? Connect with yourself and each other in here.

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