Hi, I’m Kim and I’ve always struggled to find a work/life balance!
With my qualifications and experience (22 years in Early Years!) , I have been a Nanny, and worked my way up from Nursery Practitioner, Head of Room, Deputy and then to Nursery Manager.
I loved my career, I always had so much pride and passion for the children in my care, the families and my staff team, but overtime I knew in my heart something wasn’t quite right… my sparkle was becoming less ‘sparkly’ and my home life balance was off!
On reflection, I believe it was the pressure cooker of being behind the scenes in nursery management which was taking me away from being hands on. I missed the engagement with the children, getting lost in play, being part of and celebrating children’s achievements and being able to share and have more time to chat with the parents. I would go home and with my heavy invisible baggage at the end of the day and relive events. In the evenings I became preoccupied with scenarios of the day. My children were aware that Mummy wasn’t happy and sadly learnt to just give Mummy space.
Well one morning I woke up poorly with all the signs… yes, I had Covid so I was home bound and that’s when I started to ask the question, if I wasn’t a Nursery Manager, what would I do?
I knew I wanted to be my own ‘she boss’ and wanted to run classes, with an educational purpose, with hidden learning through play. So I played around with ideas and names I would call myself and whilst Googling domain names, up pops Little Learners UK and I instantly fell in love. It ticked all the right boxes, educational, early years, messy play, encouraging mark making for early writing skills just to name a few… Internally I was sold, externally I had to take that big leap of fate and trust my instincts.
On the 28th November with a heavy heart I said goodbye to my comfort blanket of 15 years. I left with no regrets and loved my time as a Nursery Manager, but it was the right time for me to find a new balance and start my next chapter…
So that brings us to today….
Hello, I am Kim – I run Little Learners Winchester. I now have two classes a week. My first term sold out in both venues within a week and my spring term class bookings are filling up fast. I have also been lucky to host a Christmas event, three parties and support a charity event and they have all been so much fun. I look forward to my ‘We’re Going on a Bear Hunt’ event coming soon which is now fully booked.
It’s been a lot of hard work but it’s so worth it. Watching the children’s enjoyment, being part of their learning and development, observing and celebrating their milestones being met, the interactions with both children and their parents / carers. The laughter, excitement and messy fun… it’s been the glitter pot I needed to make me ‘sparkly’ again and find that work/life balance!
Finally and most importantly, time with my family, my world, my everything.
Little Learners Winchester has become a family project – my babies 11 and 7, love to help with planning, resourcing, helping at events and just hearing about my day and the classes I held.
The most important gift I have given to them is being more present. The love has always been and will always be so strong and although I was present in the physical sense at home, my heart was full but my head was distracted with problem solving and negative feelings.
Am I still manically busy? – yes, but I now have better work/life balance, self-care, clearer boundaries and priorities… and my babies know when they need a ‘huggle’ I am always ready, no space needed!
To my Little Learners Winchester, ‘thank you’. To my husband for his endless support, I love you….Now my Little Learners Winchester, let’s have fun getting messy!!!!