Denise O'Donoghue meets Wexford woman Nicola Naessens - a blogger and mum to five children.
Wexford woman Nicola Naessens is a blogger and mum to five children. She says once she was reluctant to identify as a stay-at-home mum.
“There was a time when I felt almost ashamed to admit I was a stay-at-home mum as society really puts very little value on the role of a stay-at-home parent, however I’ve come to realise that the work I do is every bit as valuable as work I would do outside the home. Like the majority of stay-at-home parents, I work hard,” she said.
She says blogging helped her find a role beyond her life at home.
“Blogging has been good for me. It has raised my confidence and it has helped me discover who I am beyond wife and mother. ”
Nicola has been blogging on simplyhomemadeblog.com since 2011 and writes about all aspects of her life.
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The children were as excited this morning as they were at Christmas. The smallest girl was in charge, I was given instructions to carry out , everything was ticked of her list. She was delighted her efforts paid off as Mr. Simply Homemade got his 50th birthday off to a good start! 🎉 - - - - #irishbloggers #50thbirthday #myfamilymylife #flashesofdelight #myhomemadelife #thehappynow #livethelittlethings #seekthesimplicity #theartofslowliving #Wexford #wexfordblogger #littlestoriesofmylife #ipbig #Wexfordlife
“I write many personal pieces, some of which I’ve been wary about publishing but have been very lucky in that I have only ever received positive feedback.”
She is not afraid to tackle difficult subjects, and her blog on depression struck a chord.
“I was totally overwhelmed by the feedback I received. People got in touch to tell me that they felt the same and opened up, admitting they too had depression but never told anybody.
“Unfortunately, despite the ongoing, fantastic work by high-profile people such as Bressie, despite the campaigns, I do still feel there is quite a big stigma attached to mental health, still. We’ve come a long way but there is still a very long way to go to abolish that stigma.”
Nicola has seen the blogging world change over the past seven years, but she stays focused on writing and interacting with her readers.
“Blogging has changed so much since I started, the community was a lot smaller. I’ve seen a myriad of changes that have taken place within blogging, though I’m sure there are many I’ve missed too.
“I think it’s really important to remember why one blogs. I love to write, I enjoy interacting with other people and I enjoy reading other blogs too.”
Social media is a useful tool for chatting to her readers online.
“I enjoy Instagram, it’s a lovely community and is full of so many inspirational people.
“I use Facebook for my blog and I have a lovely bunch of followers over there who like to converse or get in touch to ask questions and advice about food which if I can help with I am more than happy to do so.”