Self Employed

Girl Did Good - Life After Lessons

Name: Rachael

Job Title: Self Employed

What exactly is that?

Swimming Teacher, creator, maker and seller of preserves, Environmental Education promoter

How did you get there?

A lot of hard-work and dedication. I have a BSc, post grad Dip and working towards an MSc. I have attended various training courses for swimming, first aid, forest school; over 20 years experience in conservation; I spend many hours reading books and scrolling the internet for new ideas, improve techniques and gain further knowledge in a number of different fields.

Describe a typical day in your life right now

Each day is quite different. It can vary from day to day and week to week depending on what I have on and what appointments I have. Some days I am doing house work, some days I am teaching swimming, some days I am studying, some days I am making my preserves.

I take my daughter to school most weeks, unless I have some work on that requires her to go to breakfast club. I am usually there to pick her up from school at 3.15. September 2015 – June 2016 I am at night school on Tuesday evenings 6-9 and most wednesday evenings I teach swimming for a hour. 2nd and 4th Wednesday of the month I help with a local community lunch club. Every wednesday after school I help with after school netball club.

So far this week Monday: around 7am my husband brings me a cup of tea, 7.30 I got up, get washed and dressed, 7.45 I wake my daughter (it is a gentle approach as she can be quite grumpy if done too suddenly) I then went down stairs and got my daughters breakfast ready. (2 weetabix in a bowl with a small jug of milk (for her to pour on herself), a small glass of juice and her vitamin tablets) she comes down stairs in her dressing gown and sits at the table to eat. I made myself a cup of coffee and cut some fruit up for my daughter to have afterwards. By this time it is usually just after 8am. while she is still eating I go up stairs and run her wash and put her clothes out (in winter they are warming on the radiator) As soon as she finishes breakfast she comes up stairs for her wash. she gets dressed, I brush her hair and then we brush our teeth. depending on time she may have five mins play or reading time. Then it is shoes and coat on and usually out of the house just after 8.30am.

We either walk, scoot or run to school. we have two routes – one on the road and one through the woods. on arrival at school she goes and plays and I have a chat with some of the other parents. around 9am the bell goes and they all line up and go in. A quick chat with a couple of parents outside the gate, then a walk on Bodmin Moor with a couple of friends taking their dogs for a walk, return home just after 10. Make myself another cup of coffee, hang the washing out and put on another load. Finish the ironing from the night before listening to the radio. Have a bowl of cornflakes with skimmed milk. Hang the next load of washing out. Do a bit of computer work, check emails and send a few. Start some study work for an exam in a few weeks. Go outside and start cutting the grass. It is now 2.55pm, it is a quick change into my running gear, pick up my ruck sack and then run to school ready for 3,15 after school cross country club (I run with another parent) we had 17 turn up and ran 4 miles with them across Bodmin Moor. Some needed a lot more encouragement than others.

Return to school at about 4.40. Wait for my daughter to come out of after school cookery club. we get home at just after 5pm. She goes up stairs and gets changed into her Brownie uniform while I get her tea ready. At 5.45 we are out of the house and on the brownie run (I do this every three weeks, as we (three mums) take it turns to take our girls to brownies), my turn this week, so pick up two other girls and head into town (just over 3 miles away) Drop the girls at Brownies at just after six.

My husband and I were going to have a meal at Liskeard Tavern as a belated birthday meal, he then was going to go down west to see a rare bird but ended up having to work. Instead I met him at our allotment for a spot of weeding and watering. At 7.15pm I head back into town to pick the girls up, and do the reverse drop off. Daughter and her friend wanted to have a quick play and see the new baby rabbits so end up having a quick drink and chat while the girls play, home just after 8.30pm. My husband puts our daughter to bed and reads her a story. It is left overs, cheese and biscuits for a late tea (most days we try to eat as a family (or certainly two of us) at around six pm) 9pm sit down in the lounge with the laptop for a couple of hours. I was in bed by 11.30 (fairly early for me as it is usually gone midnight)

What’s the best thing about what you do?

Every day is different, I meet lots of interesting people. I love the challenge.

What’s the one thing you would change if you could?

Need need to be better organised with a much better business head.

What did you want to do for a living when you were at school?

Travel the world, work with children.

Tell us about something you were insecure about when you were at school

My body image. I was bullied at school – I wore glasses, I was vegi, I came from a divorced family, I had braces, I was told I was ugly with a large nose. I was never over weight, probably the other end of the spectrum. When I was in my late thirties I had a small nose job. This boosted my confidence. It is not perfect and still larger than I would like but i can now cope as it is much smaller than it was.

What advice would you give yourself at 18 if you could?

Study harder, allow people to love you and love back, show emotion. Be stronger

What’s your favourite thing to do in your spare time?

spend time with my family, swim, run, cycle, gardening, making and doing things for other people

What’s the title of the last book you read?

The Last Child in the Woods

Share with us one beauty tip you have learned

Electrolysis on your eyebrows. For those that have fairly bushy eyebrows like I had that needed plucking and waxing all the time. For 12 months worth of zapping and a little bit of pain it is worth every penny. I have not had to do anything to mine for years.

Please share with us a money tip

Budget, write a shopping list and stick to it.

Please share a life lesson you have learned

Be true to yourself

Tell us about your favourite recent purchase of £25 or less

A cardigan – virtually in mint condition – a posh brand for £1 – all money going to charity

Where can people find you online for more details?

Rachael’s Preserves on Facebook


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