This weekend, our fav mom pick is Chenoa Morris, 34-year old mamma living in the gorgeous Newcastle, Australia with her husband and three kids: Baylee (7), Isla (5) and little Reef (4 months). The beautiful family is an Instagram-adored clan, who inspires everyone around, and who makes me, at least, wanna be part of their fam. Their days are all about being in the nature, breathing fresh air and living an organic life with their toes in the sand. Supermom Chenoa has been together for 18 years with her bae, and their beautiful kids are proof that true love does last forever. Especially if you add a splash of salty water to their family affair, right?
It would be an understatement to say how much I admire her, but you’ll see for yourself after reading her naked truth on motherhood and some behind-the-scene secrets of raising three kids. Because not everything is all honey and milk, and because on the mag we like to say things as they are, and mix the idyllic Insta life with the behind the scenes secrets that only the brave ones are willing to share! Still, her Instagram page will make you want to move by the ocean tomorrow and have oh-so- many kids!
Read and relate!
1. So, you’re a mom to two boys and a girl. What’s the most exciting thing about being a mom of three? What about the hardest/ scariest?
Two was absolutely wonderful. Bay and Isla are besties who are so different yet complimented each other so well people would often comment how well they get on. Two was nice, three has been, well, a challenge but we are finding our groove. The hardest thing is they are at different stages, the best thing is the love- so much love.
2. Tell us a little about your background. And when did you feel you became such an inspiration and influential mom on Instagram?
I am the youngest of 5 and all my siblings are a lot older then myself. My Insta is really our love of outdoors, water and play based nature play which I think stems from my childhood of growing up playing outside in the bush all day until night. My teen years of bodyboarding at the beach, rain or shine, I was there. I hope I’m an inspiration because it’s us, it’s authentic.
3. What is the most valuable quality your children have thought you?
Kindness… always kindness.
4. How do you feel you have you changed since becoming a mom?
I don’t think I have changed- if anything I have become more myself then ever, I have a new found sense of self since becoming a mother.
5. Your biggest inspiration?
My mum and sisters, my best friend, I draw inspiration from absolutely almost everyone, seriously I love it!!
6. Tell us the story behind your children’s names.
Bay, as he prefers, but his real name is Baylee. It’s a bit of a story: my hubby and I decided that he would choose the boy’s name when we found out Bay was a boy. We had nicknamed him BAM as he was so active in my belly. My dada was diagnosed with terminal cancer when I was 32 weeks, he was given 8 weeks to live. We gave Bay the middle name Allan after him. We began thinking of a name starting with B so he would have the initials BAM still. Dad had a dream about someone being called Baylee, hubby agreed so it was to be. Isla’s name I had picked Isla and Ocea and hubby preferred Isla (I loved it since first seeing actress Isla Fisher). Isla meaning Island, it is protected by the Bay around her. Reef was my win, hubby really wanted Jaxon and it should of really been his pick but the day I birthed him I think hubby was so happy he would of gave me anything. I also loved they all reflect our love of the ocean.
7. You seem to be leading such an organic, free, relaxed life, which so many of us envy… even your Instagram account seems organic. What inspires you to be so differnt from others, what is your biggest drive in the morning and how do you manage to stay authentic and true?
A cup of tea is my biggest drive in the morning haha. Its easier for me to have an organic authentic Instagram, because it’s real I absolutely love my strong ethics. Personally it’s more for my own benefit, I hate lying to myself and numbers and likes have never really been what it’s about. Sure it’s nice seeing followers go up but anyone can have that these days. It’s nice knowing people follow and comment because for no other reason but they wanted too.
9. Is there anything you miss about life before babies?
Reading into the early hours to finish a book, sun baking and actually relaxing at the beach!!
10. Are you ever taking time off away from the kids when you feel stressed or tired?
Definitely. It’s never for long but I love alone time, I crave it!!
11. Your favourite activities with the kids?
At the beach of course, even kicking the ball at the beach.
12. What does it mean to you to give your children the best childhood possible?
It means so much to me. I had an absolutely incredible childhood and I want them to have the same; it’s grounding.
13. Was it harder to go from 1-2 kids or from 2-3? What would you advise a mom who is about to have her third child?
Definitely 2-3 also because I had been out of the baby stage for a while just not being able to grab the keys go with now a baby was a massive adjustment. Its getting easier though you just have to do it. I couldn’t imagine never not having had reef now.
14. What’s the best thing about raising your kids by the sea?
What it does for the soul…not having anxiety; it’s my calming place. Bay is a water baby, he is high in emotions and it’s so good for him. Isla is the artistic soul who builds moulds and shapes sandcastles for hours. Reef is just like me: his whole body relaxes and he turns his face to the sea breeze.
15. What does a normal day in your life look like? Your morning routine, nap time, lunch, dinner, bed time… It is exhausting even with one kid (in my case), can’t even imagine with three… But I would love to hear all about it!
I looove sleep but it’s not happening much lately haha. Hubby works away 14hr days so the kids don’t really see him much during the week which is hard, he then sometimes works weekends. So it’s just me with the kids a lot. I am slow in the mornings, super slow.. we get Bay off to school and spend time at home. With Reef being so young and being born into summer, we have been waiting for the evenings to go to the beach but now that it’s cooling down, we will actually spend more time there. The kids help me cook- Isla loves it, I don’t love it. There’s footy training, swimming lessons, homework and all the usual stuff. I’m not very organised at this part of parenting but am getting there. I live for the holidays, as important as a good education ism I love going slow and school is a massive time thief.
16. What is your take on motherhood, and how would you describe yourself as a mom?
Everyday I’m learning more and they teach me as much as I teach them. It’s hard, it’s happiness, to me being a Mother is what life is about. That’s my take, not everyone will feel the same and that’s ok. There are so many different ways to mother and as long as it comes from love and you do your best, you are fine. It’s so easy to be too hard on yourself to tick all the boxes for your children, but take it all back to basics and just play and be with your children and try hard to not overthink it. It honestly goes so fast and I know right now raising my kids are the best years of my life.
17. And now… tell us, what is life like behind-the-scenes of those picture-perfect Instagram snaps? It all looks so calm and stylish, but I am sure that behind the lense, there’s much more. 🙂 We look forward to knowing the naked truth.
Haha yes, it’s not all perfect waves and smooth seas!! As much as I try to keep my Insta as real and authentic, it’s still small snippets of the awesome parts. I do post happy photos but expose some of the not so happy moments in my comments. You can tell when people don’t read and comment on how good baby Reef is. Yes in photos he is content and happy and in my comments I have mentioned his trips to the hospital, how his silent reflux was so bad he vomited blood, how for the first 3 months he cried more then he didn’t. I loose my temper every night at bed time, Bay has big emotions and definitely isn’t easy to parent, there’s problems galore but it teaches us resilience. Plus the bond between Bay, Isla and Reef makes me prouder then anything in this world. Our morning snuggles are life!