What do our guests have in common? Our particular attachment to each of them! Their sensitivities , their professions or their commitments touch us, and we are lucky to count them among the members of our BABA "family". Let's discover these inspired and inspiring moms ...
Welcome to Audrey Fitzjohn!
To open the ball for this 1st “Family Portrait” , who better than the one who was able to capture our universe so accurately and bring MAISON BABA to life in images ? You guessed it, Audrey Fitzjohn does us the honor of being our first guest to take part in our interview!
Hello Audrey, thank you for accepting our invitation! Some words to present you ?
My name is Audrey , I live with my husband Elliot and my two children, Charles and Joséphine , in Saintes in Charente Maritime. After a nice career as a photographer accompanying many brands, I realized the desire to create my own. The idea had been in my head for a while and seeing my clients flourish in their projects gave me the impetus and the courage to embark on my own adventure. I started COSE eight months ago.
COSE, a dream come true?
"Harmonious coexistence of mixed things..."
We can say that indeed, COSE is a happy mixture of all my passions, for fashion, beautiful objects and the art of living in general. As far back as I can remember, I've always had a feeling for all that and at the same time I didn't really know how to go about doing something about it. It took me a long time to mature this desire, to give it substance, to know myself better too, so today I know that it is a dream that has materialized in my life.
A little secret to reconcile professional life and family life with brio?
I can only speak of my experience as an entrepreneur in this specific case, because it was the only status I had as a mother. I try to model my days on those of a salaried job, it took me a while to do it but it was very beneficial for me. It helps not to mix everything up and to compartmentalize the day, especially when working from home. I try to ignore everything about personal life between 9:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. and after 4:30 p.m. I do the opposite, well I try. I sometimes have to work in the evening but besides that I still allow myself a morning from time to time with a friend and I do my shopping every Friday morning after dropping the children off at school, it feels good and that's one of the benefits I choose to give myself.
What mom are you to your children?
I believe that I am an attentive and very attentive mother, without necessarily having to verbalize things, they know that they can count on me and that I am always there for them. They are my "numero uno" priority! This is also why entrepreneurship suits me well, I need to work to flourish, but above all I need to be there for them, to take them and pick them up when they leave school. school, to spend time with them, to dedicate my Wednesday to them... I always tell myself that those years with them are precious and that I will never be able to recover them, I am aware that this choice to take care of them as much as possible is not offered to everyone, so I take my chance and make the most of it.
Their personality traits that affect you the most?
Charles has the soul of an artist, his mind is constantly bubbling, he always has a thousand questions and a thousand ideas, I like his completely alternative way of seeing life, for him everything is possible, he inspires me a lot.
Joséphine is a child whose kindness and infinite empathy touch me deeply, she has a rather bewildering maturity. She foresees a lot of things and has a lot of tenderness for everyone, she's a ball of love.
The main thing to pass on to them?
Our role for both of us is to love them and give them values of respect for others and themselves, resilience in the face of effort and difficulties, while leaving them free to be themselves and to pursue their aspirations. So based on that, I would say the bottom line is that they get to know themselves, trust themselves, follow their hearts, and know that they are loved no matter what.
The most laborious in your role as a mother?
Meals, I'm absolutely useless for that, it's not my thing, I'm never inspired, besides it's often Elliot who cooks. I would like to do better, small balanced dishes, all that all that, but no, I'm rowing!
A favorite family ritual?
I go antiquing very early regularly on Sundays, I always come home with pastries and I prepare a nice table with candles and breakfast before everyone gets up. We meet then, I show them the odds and ends that I found and we start our Sunday sated, it's always a good time.
Your favorite solo pastime?
I couldn't choose but occupy my ten fingers that's for sure! Knitting, drawing, sewing, recently I started patchwork… I need to create in a completely free way, it relaxes me.
Tell us about your lovely home!
We finished renovating it a few months ago, it looks like us and is really perfect for our family, everyone has their own space, I see it as a refuge. We've put everything we like into it, the pieces that have been found over time, the colors that we find soothing, the materials that we want. We imagined the floor rather dedicated to children, they have their bathroom and a large space which connects all the rooms and where to meet.
What is the atmosphere there?
I think it's a happy house, with lots of books, music and lots of creativity, and at the same time it's also very serene and calming.
Your favorite place?
“To put my eye on the small details…”
The living room. I like its light, the calm that reigns there and the objects that are there.
Happy common bazaar or area dedicated to children?
We have a small rule: the toys stay upstairs, the children are big enough now and are lucky enough to have space. I think it's important, when possible, for adults to have a place where the boundary is clear, without mess and without toys in front of them once the children go to bed or go to school. I think it is also important for children to learn to be comfortable and to find their place in a space that is not "dedicated" to them, ours in any case seem to live it very well and spend as much sometimes up than down. When they go down we talk, we read, we draw or we listen to music, and conversely we go up to play legos, in the kitchen, etc... with them.
How did you think about the layout of their rooms?
I tried to make their rooms according to their interests. Charles spends hours drawing and writing so we made him a very large desk with shelves so he can spread out and store all his stuff, well it's rarely tidy but he has room to sit indulge in his passion!
Joséphine will soon be changing rooms, it will be an opportunity to review the layout because she too needs a dedicated space where she can draw and be creative. For each one I sort and store the toys in baskets in furniture at their height, it is more practical for them to see their toys and easier to store… even if they both rarely store, I repeat to myself haha!
A quick word on Josephine's BABA?
"100 ways to chill in your BABA but this is clearly her favorite"
He immediately found his place at home and in Josephine's daily life. She uses it as much for reading, lazing around, as for installing her toys, she chose to store small CDs of stories in the pocket on the side, she really made it her own. As for me, I love its aesthetics, modern, refined and at the same time welcoming.
A house for life or until the next?
For the moment we are fine here, the house corresponds perfectly to the phase of life in which we are, it is quiet but close to school, friends of the children and ours. I'm sure we'll want something else one day, but later, probably when the kids are older or have left the nest.
What does a Sunday look like at your place?
With Elliot also having a business to run, our weeks are quite hectic and intense, so Sunday is our quiet day to stay home with the family. As I explained above, we all have a hearty breakfast together and then everyone enjoys as they wish to have a day without schedules and without constraints. I organize the week so that there is never homework on Sunday, it's a day for the four of us without work for anyone, a real break.
The perfect vacation?
In Groix at my mother's, we are very attached to her and to the island. You have to take the boat for 45 minutes to reach it and it's a very special feeling, you have the impression of leaving everyday life and its little hassles on the continent, of getting rid of something, it's always very reassuring .
Your family in three words?
Rock & roll (that's my mother who says it all the time! "the rock & roll family!"), close-knit & happy!
What do you wish for the future?
That it rolls like that for a long time, we are happy. Perhaps to slow down the pace just a little bit from time to time ...
“Everyone’s experience is everyone’s treasure.”
Find Audrey on Instagram!
@audreyfitzjohn & @cose.lifestyle