Meet the Mama Behind the Insta: Raising Young Loves

Whenever I scroll through Insta and see one of Elise's bebes, I swoon! This gorgeous mama's brood of three is just the most adorable bunch there is. I sometimes find myself doing cheek squishing motion and googly eyes to my cell phone when I check her feed. The hubby gives me weird looks every time it happens, it is sort of hilarious really!

But what I admire most about Elise is the way she celebrates her postpartum body. The way she takes pride in what her body nurtured in each pregnancy is such a powerful statement on how glorious a mama's body is. Because of her, I am now learning to love the body that I have - bumps, scars, marks and all. She is such an inspiration! 

We were so lucky to feature her in our first catalogue. It was such a thrill to see Little Miss Willa so adorable in this shoot. That bebe is a stunner! Elise also has that special talent of making all the small businesses that she worked within the photo shoot shine so bright! Her sense of style is just top-notch!

Grab a cuppa and get to know more this amazing mama. Don't forget that we have collated her gorgeous finds so be sure to read until the end!

You can follow Elise here: @raisingyoungloves

When did you start your Instagram account and how did it come about?

It was over 5 years ago now. A few girlfriends had it and it was quite new at the time so I started my own account. It wasn't until Peyton was around 1 (so 3 years ago) though that I started to explore the app and found a love for small and handmade businesses and started to connect with other mothers around the world.

Please describe your Instagram style.

I don't know that I would say I have a style? I just sort of post things I love! I guess there's a touch of vintage to our home and the way I dress my children. But mostly, it's just about honest motherhood.

What do you love most about Instagram?

There are so many things I love! I've found a real love for small businesses. It's pushed my photography and creative side and it's opened up many discussions about motherhood.

But I would have to say my favourite thing is the connections I've made. Mothers across the world who are fighting the same battles and living the same dreams, lifelong friends that I have gained. It's a place where I can share my struggles and my wins, and (mostly) not be judged but instead gain support and know that I'm not alone. Motherhood and even life for that fact aren't always easy, so it's comforting to know that you're not the only one walking in those shoes.

I feel the happiest when...

My kids are happy. It sounds cliché but when my kids are in good mood and getting along nicely then I too am truly happy. There's nothing better than just stepping back and watching them play and be creative. A favourite thing I do is really listen to what they're saying to catch a glimpse of their wide set imagination!

My guilty pleasure is...

Well... I'm sitting here eating a block of chocolate, so maybe chocolate haha!!

My morning routine is...

Most mornings, I wake up to all three kids in my bed. Sometimes Willa likes to have a feed and more often than not, Xander will yell, "It's morning! Get up!"

I always like to sit on the couch with a cuppa for at least 5 minutes every morning. I normally wake up tired #mumlife so I like to sit and gather my thoughts and prepare myself mentally for the day before all the chaos begins!

The advice I would give to first-time mums...

Trust your motherly instincts! Everyone likes to put in their two cents on the "rights and wrongs" of parenting. But the truth is there's plenty of different parenting styles and ways of doing things. You're never going to please everyone, so just do whatever is right for you and your baby! Be open to advise but feel free to only take away from it what you need! Most importantly, trust yourself to make these decisions, cause Mumma knows best!

The hardest thing about being a mumma is...

For me, it's sleep deprivation! I'm a night owl and my kids are night owls, so I don't get anywhere near enough sleep. (Which mother does though, right?!) I find I lose my temper easier when I’m more tired than normal. Situations escalate easier when you’re sleep deprived!

I sometimes lament on the fact that Mumma needs sleep!! Life would seriously be so much easier if we didn’t need to sleep, OMG! Imagine how clean the house would be!!

My 5 favourite beauty products are...

  1. A quality shampoo and conditioner - for those times when I actually get to wash my hair and I don’t normally have time to blow dry, so good quality haircare for air drying is best!
  2. A whitening toothpaste - cause all those coffee stains need to go!
  3. O Cosmetics facial scrub is my absolute favourite! 
  4. A good eye cream - cause let’s face it, three kids is giving me wrinkles, haha! 
  5. Dry shampoo - seriously what mum doesn't love it!

My fave self-care ritual is...

It’s pretty simple but I love those days when you wash your hair, shave everything, moisturise and maybe even clip your nails!

Where do you find inspiration for your styling?

There's plenty of inspiration on Instagram. I'm really drawn to the vintage and Danish/Scandinavian style, as well as American farmhouse style. I love a good Pinterest search, too!

When I’m styling I only use pieces I truly love, rather than following a certain style. It makes our house feel more homely and personal that way, too!

What are your 5 Mama Hacks?

  1. Use dishwashing liquid to get breast milk and baby vomit stains out of clothing.
  2. Buy key children's clothing pieces in unisex colours so they can be handed down! I'm loving dressing Willa in her big siblings’ old pieces!
  3. Buy a baby carrier/sling/wrap. Best mumma tool ever!
  4. Make a game out of chores like cleaning up toys and putting things away!
  5. Always pack snacks! I’m a shocker for this one, my friends would know, but anyone with kids knows as soon as you go somewhere or get in the car they want to eat!! 

What will we find on your bedside table?

  • A glass or bottle of water
  • Essential Oils diffuser
  • Phone charger

If you could do one thing to change the world starting from you, what would that be?

Acceptance. If I could change one thing it would be giving people to ability to accept - accept that we are all different in our own unique way. Be that our parenting style, the way we dress, our religion, our morals, our children’s names, our body shape, our hair colour. If we could simply accept we are all different we would start to eliminate bullying, trolls, judgement, criticism and hate! We need to accept that we are all made differently and made to make different choices and have different paths in life because let’s face it, how boring would it be if everyone was the same!

  1. Grey Canopy by Freddie and Ava
  2. Reversible Floral Mustard Bib by Little Goose
  3. Baby Journal by Write to Me
  4. Little Darling Playsuit by Pip and Lenny
  5. Lactation Cookies by Made to Milk
  6. Floral Teardrop Bib by Harlz and Haven
  7. Navy Dress by Tots and Mor
  8. Audrey Doll by And the Little Dog Laughed
  9. Milly T-Bar Shoe by Just Ray Baby