Meet super mama of four and passionate small business owner Kylie Brady. Residing in the picturesque suburb of Patterson Lakes, not only does Kylie fit in the kinder run, school run, kids sporting activities and household duties, she’s also a volunteer lifesaver and mobile travel agent with her own business, KB 4 Travel who specialise in family travel & cruising. We recently had a chat with Kylie about all things home and business and just how she finds that magical unicorn balance of being an inspiring working mama.
MLTS: Thanks for chatting with us Kylie, tell us a little about yourself and your family.
Kylie: I live in Patterson Lakes, which is near Carrum beach on Port Phillip Bay.
I am married with 4 children aged 11, 10, 7 & 5. Three girls and a boy. The last one will go to school next year, yay! But now we have a new toy poodle puppy which is like another baby, so he is keeping us on our toes! My kids are still young enough that we enjoy doing things as a family, we enjoy going away for the weekend camping or trying out new things.
MLTS: Such a nice part of the world to live in with Carrum Beach right on your door step, did you grow up around Patterson Lakes?
Kylie: I am from Sydney, I moved to Patterson lakes in 2001 when I came back from living in London for 2.5 years. I met my husband on a Contiki tour around Europe and we had lived overseas together and decided to move back to Australia. My husband is from this area and at the time I got a job with a Sydney based Pharmaceutical company that had a vacancy within South East Melbourne.
MLTS: Where is your favourite place to visit on the Peninsula with your family?
Kylie: We enjoy beach time as a family. We are members at Bonbeach Lifesaving Club and spend a lot of time at the beach doing nippers Carnivals. Lifesaving is a great family sport to be involved in as there is a place for everyone in the family. Kids as young as 5 can participate in nippers itself and there are heaps of areas for parents to get involved in too. We travel all around Victoria for competitions; at various beaches on the Peninsula or as far as Warrnambool for the state titles. We love any beach, or just being out on the water in our boat. We just wish Melbourne was a little warmer for a longer period of time!
MLTS: Yes, agree with you about the Melbourne weather! Ok – you can close your eyes and magic yourself somewhere for 24hrs… where do you go?
Kylie: The beach of course, somewhere sunny & warm, perhaps with a cocktail in hand! There are so many nice beaches in the world, it is hard to choose one favourite but I would love to go back to the Greek Islands.
MLTS: Yes! So good! We’re coming too! Haha! So what first gave you the idea for KB 4 Travel?
Kylie: We have been lucky to travel so much as a family and I traveled a lot before I had kids. Living in London, it was easy to just go to Paris for the weekend. I loved sharing my experiences and the things I have learnt from travelling with 4 kids plus the hours and hours of research I put into each holiday. I get excited by hearing peoples travel stories and love talking about travel with anyone. As a family we go somewhere different each year, we have traveled to the majority of the popular holiday destinations Aussies would holiday at and I have learnt all about these destinations and experienced them first hand. I just wanted a way to share my knowledge and passion. My kids are nearly all at school and I wanted something to do during the school hours that I enjoyed.
MLTS: Wow you must have visited some beautiful destinations, tell us about KB 4 Travel and the services you provide?
Kylie: I work from home as a mobile travel agent, which is basically a travel agent that can come to you, we can communicate via email, phone or meet up for a coffee. I specialise in family travel and cruising. These are areas that I am passionate about myself and have spent many hours researching and testing for my own family holidays. I have found the best family places to stay, tried out day flights and night flights, know what places are like so can advise which hotel room to get, if you can take a pram or if you need baby food or things like that. I am part of a network of home based travel agents so I get great rates and great travel deals, often cheaper than direct. I can also shop around with the wholesale companies for the best prices and package deals. I can package family holidays up to include things like transfers, tours etc into one easy holiday. I try and make things as easy and simple as possible for the best price of course. It is my mission to get great deals and give great service. I also write travel blogs where I include lots of different hints and tips and other information for some of the more recent places I have visited.
MLTS: That is a very helpful service for time poor families! You left a career as a registered nurse to pursue your own business, what gave you the push you needed to do this?
Kylie: I worked as a registered nurse for over 10 years, in hospitals, community settings and in the private sector for a pharmaceutical company. Fitting shift work in with family life was not possible for us as my husband also works long hours as a commercial builder. I have taken on the role of family manager and take the kids to all their after school sports, various appointments, help out at school and kinder and all that kind of stuff. I wanted the flexibility to still be able to do this kind of thing as my kids like having me around and available so I went looking for a more flexible option.
MLTS: That sounds like the type of work/home balance that a lot of mums would love to have… what do you find is the hardest part about being a working mama?
Kylie: The juggling act. Each day you are faced with a new set of things that need doing, random things get thrown your way to change it up a bit like sickness or an excursion or extra homework. You just need to keep prioritising all the time and do as much as you can when you feel up to it. We went to the snow a few weeks back, the bags took a few days to unpack as I had the flu and felt sick myself. I still had to get the computer work done for my clients and cook dinner for my family, so these things took priority and the bags had to wait. It all gets done in the end, unfortunately the bags did not unpack themselves.
MLTS: Well we have to agree there, unpacking us definitely the worse thing about coming home from holidays! Do you have advice for other mums who are thinking about starting their own business?
Kylie: It is hard, but also very rewarding. It can be very consuming initially but take things as they come up and don’t stress about it. Do what you can and eventually things will seem easier and just become part of the daily routine. It has been great to find something that fits in with my family life so I would recommend finding something that suits you and your family. Only do what you can and don’t stress about what you can’t get done.
MLTS: That is great advice Kylie. So when you do manage to find some time for yourself, how do you like to spend it?
Kylie: I attend a small personal training studio called Scoops Health and Fitness in Braeside. It is great taking some time out to do a class and just catch up and chat with some of the other mothers who attend. I try and do something physical like even go for a walk with a girlfriend if I can’t get to a class. I do enjoy the social aspect as much as the physical aspect of the actual exercise.
MLTS: Socialising at the gym sounds like our sort of gym! Lastly, What’s your favourite quote?
Kylie: Do something you love and you will never work a day in your life.
We couldn’t agree more… thanks of the chat Kylie!