Hey there! Seeing as though we’re heading into the summer season and travel may be on your mind a little more, I thought I’d bring you a fun interview with another member of the Kid & Coe team.
Laura’s interview left me feeling pumped to go and explore some place new and exotic…Girls trip anyone? Her Amazon itinerary is so radical and just emphasizes the fact that she’s an absolutely cool mama who hasn’t let her passions go even as she navigates motherhood.
Laura also touched on a dream of mine when she shared about her past life of writing travel guides. I’ve secretly dreamed of writing family exploration guides. Ones where I’d go to each place with my Little Women in tow, try out all the best brunch and dessert shops, explore hidden vintage kid clothing stores, and discover all the secret spots of that the local moms love, and then I’d share all those wonderful ins and outs with curious parents looking to travel like a local to those places with their family.
Here’s my interview with Laura Hall. Don’t forget to tell me your thoughts and summer plans in the comments below. I always reply.
AM: Please introduce yourself and your family.
LH: I’m Laura Hall, and I’m the Director of Communications at Kid & Coe. I have 2 lovely little girls, aged 2 and 7, and a very hard working and supportive husband.
AM: Where did you grow up and was travel a part of your upbringing?
LH: I’ve always lived in the UK, and my parents encouraged us to travel as a family. My love of travel is really a love of change, new things and people – I really love meeting new people, absorbing new ideas and seeing things for the first time.
AM: Before working for Kid & Coe you were a travel journalist. Please tell us what that was like and how you got into that field.
LH: After a degree at Oxford University, I took some time to travel. I studied English and always loved writing so it seemed natural to write about travel. I’m lucky that after some time working at an international branding agency in London, I got a job as a travel writer, by persuading a travel publisher they needed a travel guide on Iceland. It gave me a chance to stay in Iceland for a long summer, learn Icelandic and generally explore without paying for it – so I was in heaven! I wrote and edited travel guides for a while, then wrote for major magazines and newspapers after that, before spending a good amount of time as a freelance journalist and hotel reviewer.
It was great – I love working with people who love travel, they are the best sort of people! I would say, however, it’s not a career to get into for the money. It’s got to be love…
I’ve had some incredible money-can’t-buy experiences, like drinking wine that was on the Titanic in Serbia, staying in glorious hotels all over the world, camping in a safari reserve in Sri Lanka metres from crocodiles and giraffes, and getting up close and personal – while 7.5 months pregnant – to the erupting volcano in Iceland – and the limited salary really didn’t matter at all.
AM: What was your initial connection or introduction to Kid & Coe and how did you begin to work for them?
LH: Zoie got in touch with me when I was working as a freelance writer and communications consultant to see if I could offer my opinion on a little project she was working on. I knew from the first moment that it was genius. I met Zoie in London and felt instantly that I wanted to work with her on it. Lucky for me, she felt the same – I went from being a consultant to being part of the founding team pretty quickly, and haven’t looked back.
AM: I read a bit about your dream vacation– a kayaking trip down the Amazon with your family. Please give us some details on what that would ideally look like.
LH: I gotta say, this is one of my big dreams. I’ve wanted to go down the Amazon for decades. I’ve been to Australia, Japan, the Far East, but haven’t pulled the trigger on South America just yet. So I set myself a target – I wanted to do it for my 40th. It’s made approaching 40 into something I’m really looking forward to, and I had a few years to save up to make sure it’s brilliant.
I’ve been reading and researching about tribes, canoe trips, eco lodges and more for so long. My favourite films are always ones set in jungles in South America; I read books about adventurers and explorers and love everything about it.
I want to do an epic trip, involving 3 days canoeing, a few days staying with a local tribe and getting an introduction to their culture, a lot of wildlife watching and probably a lot of insect bites too. Imagine seeing a flock of crimson parrots flying over the jungle, and seeing a flash of pink river dolphins in the murky river from your canoe. I’m so stoked…it’s going to be so awesome! This is one trip the kids aren’t joining us on. I turn 40 next year so I guess I’ve got to get on and book sometime soon…
AM: Please recommend your favorite Kid & Coe accommodation.
LH: Right now, I’m really in love with the Havana Residence, our first property in Cuba. It is set in an old radio studio where Cuban musicians recorded back in the day, and now it’s this gorgeous family apartment. I can’t think of a better way to do that incredible city than by staying there.
AM: So, you live in London, please tell us some of your favorite restaurants and places to visit with kids in and around the city.
LH: Actually, I’m moving to Copenhagen in the next 2 weeks! I lived in Bristol for over 10 years, then moved to the London outskirts a couple of years ago. I wanted to try out living in a country town with the kids, but it just didn’t work for me at all. I have really missed the buzz of city life. So we decided to find a city that has all that buzz and creativity that we love, and try that instead. My husband could transfer with his job and I work remotely so it seems like a great option! We’re learning Danish at the moment and the kids will go to Danish schools. I’m excited about the prospect of having culture on our doorstep again (I love a good modern art gallery), a beach a short bike ride away, and having a little more dynamism in our lives.
AM: What do you do for fun or to unwind?
LH: I’m a gym freak (and genuinely, you would not think it to look at me!). I try to go 2-3 times a week, and if I wasn’t working and looking after kids, I’d be there every day. I go through phases of running too, and have done a few 10km runs. Swimming, aerobics classes, treadmills, weights classes – I can’t get enough.
AM: Please recommend your favorite book or a book you’re currently reading. It can be about travel, motherhood, or simply an empowering read.
LH: My favourite book about travel, life and everything, is The Summer Book by Tove Jansson. It’s about a young girl and her grandmother on a Swedish island one summer, and is filled with these poetic vignettes, where days are long, nothing is urgent and things just happen and develop naturally. It’s a really wonderful read. I don’t come back to many books more than once (see above: a love of new things) but this one is magnetic. I’ve read it every summer for years.
AM: Where can we find you on the web?
LH: Instagram, documenting family life and travels.
I had so much fun learning about Laura and hearing about her extensive travel experience. I hope you are inspired to do something out of your comfort zone and never be afraid to press into your passions as a mother. It’s important for us to be at our best in order to give our best to our families.