I try not to exaggerate my real life to appear interesting. I’m personally drawn to women who openly struggle with the daily life but gracefully cope with sarcasm and booze. We see enough flat lays, impeccably dressed brand reps and styled living spaces on our feed. While being great to look at, enough of it can make some women feel inferior. I like to be relatable. I see no cons in being open online.
Name: Clair Meldrum. 32
Kids: Arie Meldrum. 4, Milo Meldrum. 2
Tell me about you! What’s your background?
Mum. New wife. Painter. Backyard acoustic rockstar. Hip hop enthusiast. Former music retailer and gig-goer.
Where in the word do you call home – describe your home and hood?
I live on the Central Coast of NSW. My hood is largely populated by clean eating, crossfitting, active-wearing, soy chai sipping beach babes. Everybody knows everybody by no more than 2 degrees of separation, creating this rich tapestry of social connectedness. I think gossip and southern cross tattoos were invented here also.
Describe a typical week at your place. What care arrangements do you have and what tricks make things run smoothly for you?
My week revolves around preschool days. Preparing for them, utilising them and recovering from them. All of the other things I do like housework, painting, running, shopping and Netflix happen when my kids aren’t around. My youngest is 2 but I still nap when he naps in the middle of the day. That quick “power down” extends my battery life til late into the evening which is when the action happens.
We connected on Instagram before we met in person. Often Instagram doesn’t tell the whole story and many people try and present the perfect life – you don’t take that approach. You are open and honest and tell it exactly how it is. The fact that you can laugh at yourself and this whole mothering gig is so refreshing. What are the pros and cons about being so open on social media?
I try not to exaggerate my real life to appear interesting. I’m personally drawn to women who openly struggle with the daily life but gracefully cope with sarcasm and booze. We see enough flat lays, impeccably dressed brand reps and styled living spaces on our feed. While being great to look at, enough of it can make some women feel inferior. I like to be relatable. I see no cons in being open online. I mean, you’re not going to see my vagina and I’m probably not going to throw up a hate post every time my husband is a lazy asshole. I have my limits.
Last year, you made some massive changes and dropped a SHIT load of weight. Tell us about the journey. How did you do it? Why did you do it? And how did it change you?
At about 32 weeks into my second pregnancy I found out that I had gestational diabetes and spent the remainder of my pregnancy injecting my big huge belly with insulin. GD can often be a prelude to type 2 diabetes later in life and while there’s no real way of preventing that, a massive change in lifestyle can reduce the chances. I punched out my son and tried all my usual diets with a bit of success but my body had changed and wasn’t responding in the same way anymore. I decided to give Jenny Craig a crack. I was 100 kilos at my first weigh in and maybe 8 months later I’d reached my goal weight of 75 kilos. I even had the chance to brag about myself on TV last year on a run of ads as a JC representative. Losing weight isn’t the answer to all of life’s problems but I am happier because I’m healthy and strong. It’s also super nice/weird to consider yourself attractive. Not in a “fuck yeah fellas, look at aaaaaall of this” kinda way but in a “you worked hard and now you’re not a potato” kinda way.
I am totally jealous of your style confidence – what’s important to you when choosing clothes and has that changed since becoming a mother?
Before kids I dressed to look slimmer and blend in. Becoming a mother, losing weight and moving well into my 30’s has left me with a better understanding of who I am as a woman. I like to dress like the kid’s cool auntie rather than their mum. I’ve named my style “ghetto princess”. I can be totally comfortable and agile in my Adidas tee and superstars but jazz that bitch up with big gold hoops, a metallic bag and some offensively bright lipstick.
What do you think is the scariest thing about having kids and what is the best thing?
The scariest thing about having kids is holding the power to fuck up a human forever if you get it wrong. The best thing about having kids is using them as an excuse to leave a BBQ if it’s getting shit.
You recently started a little business painting family portraits called #clairsdoodle – tell us about that. What made you start?
I have always been creative in some way. Art is like a love that I broke up with because I fell pregnant. Late last year I had one of my regular surges of artistic creativity and started painting again. I was sure that I would get bored, uninspired or too busy to maintain it but to my surprise I fell in love again. In December clairsdoodle was born. I have been overwhelmed and humbled by the interest and support in this very early stage of what I hope to be my “thing”. I needed a thing that was more than being a housewife and while I’m not saving lives or changing the world I am making something.
Do you have any advice for other mamas wanting to start something, but are letting self-doubt hold them back?
If you have a skill, a talent or an idea… BE BRAVE!!! It can be very scary putting yourself out there especially if it’s something personal to you. Dr Phil told me that a person’s greatest fear is rejection and their biggest need is acceptance. It’s like he knows me. It will always be a little bit scary but all the best shit in life is.
What piece of advice do you wish you had been told before you had kids?
DO NOT compare yourself, your children or your life to anyone else. If you do you will feel like a shit mum with developmentally impaired children living in a sewer.
ME TIME + SELF LOVE – How do you take care of yourself amongst the busy demands of daily life?
Once a week I take a day with my BFF Kel aka @chiefandkewpie. We intentionally synchronised our preschool days so that we could swan around doing the things we haven’t been able to do in 5 years. We get our hair did, eat lunch in public at rest time and watch eps of whatever. There are 100,000 things we SHOULD be doing but we do nothing instead. I need it and I am very, very lucky to have her.
You recently got married… tell us about your big day.
Tim and I got married a year ago because we wanted to have the same name for when our kids started school. We chose Valentine’s Day because we don’t otherwise celebrate it. We don’t make a thing about anniversaries either so this amalgamation of events MIGHT encourage us to pull our finger out and be romantic at least one time each year. We had a spit roast pool party in our backyard with our family and a few close friends. It was supposed to be low key and casual but it was in fact, the most magical day of my life.
What has been your biggest parenting fail?
I like to have at least one significant parenting fail each day. I recently watched Milo eat carrot peel out of the garbage bin and thought… wow, he’s eating a vegetable!! And I let it happen.
If you could fly anywhere and do anything in the world for 24 hours, where would you go and who would you take with you?
I would love to go to New York. I wanna eat a slice of pizza the size of a newborn baby, see some life changing street art and throw some shapes while I get rapped at. I would take my husband who would have answered this question in the exact same way. No kids allowed.
What are a couple of your favourite brands and websites?
Who should we follow on Instagram – tell us what accounts inspire you and why?
How do I even choose? I love @beautifullifeindustries because she makes me feel like I’m watching a parade. @hailsandshine for how to be super cool in the chaos. @celestebarber because she makes me pee my pants as hard over a soy latte and she does taking the piss out of celebs. @chiefandkewpie because she is everything to me plus crazy talented. Recently @say_hola for shapes and colour that make me swoon.