Louise Gibbens Full time Home Schooler & part time Photographer
Louise Gibbens is a full time home educating mum and a talented photographer. A typical day for her revolves around making sure her boys have the opportunity to play, learn and meet up with friends. Thankfully she found the time to answer some questions for a Salt-Water profile.
WHICH SALT-WATERS DO YOU OWN?
I have a pair of Originals in navy and my boys both have the Originals in tan. But we all need some new ones ready for this summer. I'm thinking I might go for tan as well this year. I'll have to ask the boys which colour they'd prefer; they both have very definite opinions about these things already!
WHERE IS THE MOST UNUSUAL PLACE YOU HAVE WORN THEM?
I'd like to be able to say something exotic like climbing Machu Picchu but in truth, the most unusual place we've worn our sandals is in the bath! We’d spent a particularly lovely day in one of favourite spots – we call it The Fairy Woods. The boys played the whole time in the stream but the walk back out of the woods and up the hill was really muddy. It just made sense to get straight into the bath with our sandals still on when we got home!
WHERE DID YOU TAKE YOUR LAST HOLIDAY?
Last September we holidayed in The Gironde in South West France. Wine growing country. It was beautiful, and quiet and we’re looking to go back.
WHAT ARE YOU READING AT THE MOMENT?
I have a few different books beside my bed, most of which I'm sad to say lay untouched. I love a good book but I've developed a terrible habit of checking Instagram when I get into bed rather than reading. On the top of the pile, though, is one my Mum recently gave to me called ‘The House at Riverton’ by Kate Morton. She assures me it's an easy read; perhaps I'll start it this evening…
WHAT DO YOU DO TO RELAX?
I sing in a local community choir. For that one evening a week I switch off from everything, including being a Mum. It's the one place and time during the week that I'm Louise, as opposed to Archie and Jody’s Mum. I love singing; it's so good for the soul.
WHO DO YOU MOST ADMIRE AND WHY?
I truly admire both my own Mum, and my Mum in Law. They're very different from one another but they both have patience in abundance, are totally supportive, and are great examples of strong women. I have, in them both, exceptional role models in terms of mothering.
WHAT MAKES YOU HAPPY?
Earl Grey tea, singing, photography, peanut butter and chocolate. Oh, and my family, too, off course.
WHO IS YOUR BEST FRIEND?
My best friend is a lovely lady called Marie (Maz). We met in our first year at University, moved to London together and shared two different addresses, went through all the highs and lows of love, and love lost, and now we’re both mums to two beautiful boys each. It's great that our children and our husbands have become good friends, too. Maz is so grounded, and reliable. She's the one person who I can be completely myself with. I just wish she didn't live quite so far away.
WHAT WAS THE LAST THING YOU SAW AT THE THEATRE?
I took my boys to see a really unusual and thought provoking production called ‘Dusk’ at our local arts theatre, The Gulbenkian. Before that I'm very proud to say that I went to see my son Archie in a huge production of ‘Oliver!’ at The Marlowe. I cried, obviously.
WHAT IS YOUR PROUDEST ACHIEVEMENT?
It goes without saying that my boys are my proudest achievement, not only because becoming a Mum is monumental, and they're beautiful, kind souls, but because I had to overcome some not insignificant emotional issues in order to become a mother. I'm still quite surprised, and a tiny bit proud of myself.
All Photography by Louise Gibbens
Portrait by Helen Schryver www.schryverphoto.com