Friday, July 1, 2011

An interview with tiny and little (and teeny) magazine

Natalie named tiny and little magazine after her first two children - she has since had a teeny addition and we think maybe this THIRD gorgeous issue is dedicated to him. Natalie sent such generous responses to our tricky BIG questions, and we are thrilled to share them with you here to celebrate the launch of The Food Issue. It truly is a scrumptious read. 

Tell us a little bit about your background and what it was that led you to tiny and little?
I held the dream of working in a creative role for as long as I can remember. However instead of trusting the voice within, I allowed myself to be led from one place to another on the advice of others, until I found myself lost in the corporate world. It wasn't until I started maternity leave with my first child that I had a break from working. I took the time to think about my future and my dreams, and the seed was planted.

It was my own experiences as a parent looking for information and inspiration - and not being able to find what I was searching for - that helped the seed to grow. I found myself thinking of communities where ideas and advice are handed down from one person to the next. Of villages where many families band together to bring children up in an extended family style. I wished there was a community I could turn to and it inspired me to think of the magazine as my contribution to that.

How would you describe the distance between the first gem of the 'tiny and little' idea and the day you pressed 'publish' on the first issue? 
I took the time to weigh up options for the magazine between idea and issue. An aspect of it would come to me, which would see me journey off on a tangent, and I would reach a point where I had to make the decision whether to pursue it further. At the time, it felt like I was moving slowly because I wanted to get the magazine out, but now that it has been published I look back and am amazed at how far it came in a relatively short time.

What has been the most energising part of the tiny and little journey so far? And the most exhausting?!
The most energising moment was on January 1, 2011. I had decided that I would start the new year by launching my website to announce the magazine. I had a buzzing joy reverberating through me that day as I publicly took the leap to follow my dreams. That happiness, passion and energy from doing what I love that keeps me going.

The most exhausting part of the journey has been those nights when I'm working until the well after the midnight hour, moreso when my little ones are unsettled or unwell. I have three children under school age and stay at home full time to enjoy them at this lovely pre-school phase, so I work when they sleep or are with family on the weekend. Each issue takes considerable time to put together and some nights that means putting in a number of hours to keep things on track. The challenge of being a mum and a business owner, and wanting to do my best for both, is utterly exhausting some days. 

Do you have a specific daily work structure or does it depend on the will of the wind?
I am with my children all day and work when they sleep. I usually work three weeknights and all day on the weekends, although Saturday and Sunday times will change depending on how much work there is to do that day. If I can take a day, or even an afternoon off, to be with my family I will.

You have been madly in the middle of compiling and readying the 3rd issue of tiny and little; is the experience easier with each subsequent issue, or is it more like labour where no two births are the same?
The experience is easier than the first issue, but at the same time I find it more difficult to finalise it for publishing. The first issue was so wonderfully received that I find myself fearful when it comes to hitting that publish button in case it's not enjoyed as much. I hope that things continue to become easier as I finetune my rhythm with each issue that is published. 

What was your favourite childhood activity?
One of my favourite activities was playing my clarinet and I was always excited to take it out of its case. I lived out of town and spent many an evening playing while sitting on the water tank at dusk, watching the setting sun light up the sky in vivid peach and red above the mountains my home looked onto.

Do you have a particular toy or childhood remnant you can't wait to share with your children? 
I loved The Muppet Show as a young child and recently shared my Kermit and Miss Piggy dolls from when I was five with my little ones. The most adorable moment was watching my four year old ask to wash Miss Piggy's hair because it had knotted from being stored for so long. He was incredibly loving and gentle, and it reminded me of how I cared for her when I was little.
Bravery is... giving your dreams wings to take flight
Imagination is...whatever you want it to be
Generosity is... giving with love, kindness and no expectations

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