Lives: Limerick (via six years in Lanzarote!)
Blog: Big Brows Messy Hair
Limerick native Jade McNamara started her blog, Big Brows Messy Hair, as a way to rediscover herself after becoming a mum, but it’s since grown into much more than just a hobby. As well as writing about all things style, health and fitness, Jade also uses her online presence as a platform to promote autism awareness and acceptance, by sharing her own experiences of life with her son, Dylan.
She’s got a lot on her plate, but this mama is organised to a T – outfit planning, meal prep and scheduling in Dylan’s daily appointments are all just second nature to her. We caught up with Jade to find out how she manages to fit it all in.
Style, beauty, lifestyle and fitness are four topics would describe my life in a nutshell. If I had to choose two areas I most prefer writing about, it would be fashion and fitness. Fashion because I love seeking out the latest trends, and fitness because I was a gymnast for ten years representing Ireland internationally and sport has always played a big role in my life.
I have a young son, Dylan, and with the blog I was mainly hoping to rediscover the parts of me I lost along the way of becoming a mother. It is so important to learn how to switch off ‘mommy mode’ even just for a few hours in the evening to recharge the batteries, and blogging helps me do that.
Kristin Cavallari’s sense of style always inspires me. She is so effortless and chic. She nails the street style every time. My personal style is comfortable, flirty and ever-changing.
The best fashion tip I have is to dress for your body type, not by the latest trends. I dress to accentuate my shape. For everyday outfits, I like to stick to neutral and dark shades for a classic style, though I do like to add a splash of colour with dresses. I have a rail in my room filled with a multi-coloured selection of bandage dresses screaming to be worn!
It has to be the chic black jersey dress I got from Missguided. It is so versatile and with the right shoes and accessories it can be worn day or night, so it’s a great one to bring on holidays!
Too frequently I’m asked ‘what is autism?’ which to me shows that autism awareness and acceptance is still very much work-in-progress in this country. I love being able to use the power of social media to raise autism awareness. As my blog continues to grow I hope I can continue to grow awareness and connect with even more parents.
It’s also great to learn about the experiences of other parents. I get sent loads of Snapchats from mothers sharing their kids’ amazing milestones with me. It is common for children with autism to not reach typical developing milestones by certain ages. I know when a child with autism learns a new skill, no matter how small it may seem, other autism parents will relate to how many months it took for that child to master this skill.
Sometimes it really does feel like there are not enough hours in the day. I try to be as organised as I can, to avoid letting things overwhelm me. For example, I always plan my outfits the night before, which means I’m never stuck for an #OOTD for the blog or Instagram. As for food, I try to prepare ahead of time as much as possible to make it easier to stay on track.
It is easy to get too caught up in the hustle of everyday life, and that’s when stress and anxiety kick in. Preparation is key for me… and copious amounts of caffeine!
I like to get up quite early to sort through emails before Dylan wakes. I’m also guilty of procrastinating a lot on Instagram! I like to squeeze in an early morning workout to kickstart my day and to boost my energy levels. I work out from home with Lucy Mecklenburgh’s online programme Results With Lucy, which I love.
Dylan generally needs to attend at least one therapy session a day, be it speech, occupational, psychology or ABA therapy, so I’ll bring him there.
In the evening once he’s in bed, I’ll get to work on the blog or do some style or trend research for a digital magazine I work with called Modachic. Evening is a great time to link in with the editor as she is based in Texas.
Wanna be a part of #MyBlogLife? It runs online weekly and in the magazine monthly, too. To be considered, you need to have a personal blog. Join STELLAR’s Facebook group, open to all personal bloggers, or drop an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, telling us why we should feature you.