Monday, 22 May 2017

Interview: Natalie, Founder of Style Me Sunday

I have a great interview for you today from Natalie (@stylemesunday) who seems to be popping everywhere at the moment from an @olivelovesalfie event to filming for Ebay @ebay_uk She is one busy lady! 


Friday, 12 May 2017

Do I need to trim my bush?

Well, after I posted a photo on Instagram of a tree I found, that strangely resembled a pair of legs and a lady garden, I realised we don’t discuss our bushes enough. 


Thursday, 11 May 2017

Interview: Olga - Big Fat Greek Mother

Well, wait until you see this crazy (and funny) lady! This my friends is Olga and she has many different characters; and I managed to tie her down for an interview... well I think it was her...

Hello lovely, thank you for taking the time to answer some questions for Bad Mum magazine.

You are one crazy lady that makes me giggle! For anyone doesn’t know Olga and her amazing friends then check out the YouTube videos – Alexia Stifado & Friends to see them in action. Olga also has a blog which explains a bit about the characters.

So, how do you think up all these different characters to play and are they based on anyone? Especially Aunty Fanoulla!?

All the zany characters are actually born out of my big fat Greek childhood. I guess you could say they are all based on pretty much every Greek person I know, have known and will come to know in the future! Also lets be honest all the characters carry a huge chunk of me; my foils frustrations and fears. Aunty Fanoulla (the loud, Greek, no filter, mustachioed character) is definitely based on a lot of the wonderful larger than life aunts I grew up with. She is not also dissimilar to a lot of my mums colourful eclectic customers growing up. (My mum used to take us to work with her in her North London Hair salon El Greco which was rather like Desmonds the TV show! Ha ha remember that? Well that's where a lot of my material stems from)

I am going to take a punt and guess you are Greek? How long have you lived here and what made you bring a little piece of Greece to us?

Oh yes I’m Greek baby but my family are all Greek Cypriots from Cyprus. I guess you guys get the Greek flavour by default because well if you cut me open that’s what spills out; (and ouzo.) But to be honest I hope people enjoy the fresh perspective on parenting and life in general you get from my gringlish experience.  I actually was born in London on Holloway Road!  I’m only saying the same things all the other wonderful instagram Mum's are saying but I’m just saying it with a monobrow and a hunk of halloumi in my mouth. Greeks highten just about EVERYTHING and even the tiniest event becomes a Greek tragedy (changing a nappy, going to Asda, opening a tin of beans) which makes everything hilarious. I hope people enjoy this different big fat Greek comedy take on the stresses and strains of modern day UK parenting.

Please tell me what your children think of you? I would have loved to have a fun Mum like you at their age! Are they at that age where they want to kill you as they are dying from embarrassment or are they finding it cool? Olga is a Mama to three boys aged 11, 9 and 7.

I always get asked this and if truth be told I think the poor things are just used to it now. Its part of their socialisation experience seeing Mummy dressed up as a myriad of characters hahaha! The other day I passed boy number 2 on the stairs whilst dressed as a bearded Greek bloke, carrying the washing basket down and he just threw a ‘hiya mum’ at me, just all matter of fact like. The boys have come to lots of my comedy shows so they are used to Mummy being lots of different characters. Also I think they are kind of proud that “mummy does funny stuff” their words not mine! Though they would never admit it. When I pick them up from school they always ask not “what did you do today Mummy” but “WHO were you today Mummy” hahahahaha.

Have you ever taken the kids out; dressed up as a character? You could turn up to parents evening, a football match, take them shoe shopping…even be cruel and use it as a punishment to get them to behave! The possibilities are endless ha ha!

Many a time. At Easter we took a family trip to Sports Direct; the long suffering hubster, the three boys and me as my character called Bambos the north London geezer. Granted they all walked slightly ahead but they still took the trip. (Bambos needed a new pair of speedos you see) As weird as it is they know that this is what Mumma does. I always workshop my characters in this way, in every day life with friends and family (whether they like it or not!) My home, my big fat Greek family, my life; these are my rehearsal spaces, these are my office so to speak. In my head (on a good day) I call myself a comedy-freelance-mum. On a bad day.... you don’t want to know but ‘nut’ and ‘job’ are often used.

What made you start up Alexia Stifado & Friends and take the plunge into Instagram, YouTube and social media?

I was finding it really hard keeping up with gigging the comedy scene and keeping up the networking to and from London. (I live in the sticks) I was getting run ragged holding down a college teaching position, doing the comedy circuit and raising 3 boys. About a year and a half ago some lovely friends (freelancers themselves) were round for dinner and suggested rather than killing myself chasing platforms and getting ‘that big break’ that I should create my own platform from home. Why go and travel to find your audience when you can bring your audience to you? Be my own mumboss! Or ‘mumpreneur’ as the cool kids say.  So that's exactly what I did! Me, a couple of cases of costumes and an iPad. That's all I had. Actually still have!!! I’m still waiting for pennies in the coffer to come from this wild comedy gamble.

Were you nervous putting the very first video up on YouTube and was you happy with the reaction you got?

I was terrified. But I also knew if the stuff was funny it would float. Initially it was my wonderful friends and family who (under much duress from me) repeatedly watched these little quirky spoof mini movies with out there characters. I’ve had negative feedback too and oh yes I’ve had haters; but then I think you know what I’m not a TV company I’m not a bigwig producer; give me a break. I’m just a mum of three boys doing this on zero budget but with heaps of love, ideas and energy. Yes it looks like I’m larking about but believe you me I take larking VERY SERIOUSLY. When someone messages me that they ACTUALLY find something funny I am so humbled and so grateful and it pushes me on.

Your videos are so different as you cover so many subjects with various characters. Where do you get all your ideas from; do you find them just in everyday life?

Everything is material. Everything. Especially the really mundane yet fascinating conversations I over hear in shops, buses and with mums in the playground! I love peoples little foibles and oddities because that's precious and that's what makes us all the same.  I love covering the big topics too like the menopause (am heading that way Happy days), dating, love, and loneliness. Check out ‘Alexia Stifado Does The Mentalpause’ on YouTube for a comedy take on the 40 plus female joys of finding surprise facial hair, wanting to murder your partner and hormonal imbalance.

I absolutely love your hair and style! How you find the time to be a Mummy, create your characters and look so good? Share your secrets please!!

Ah that's so so sweet of you to say. When I first wake up in the morning I look like Demis Roussos. Then I have coffee and slap make up on. Both do wonders I’m telling you. Also that Clarendon filter always just softens down my usual gremlin look for you pre-post. Plus I am a hairdressers daughter so I do my hair myself! I also have a thing for vintage clobber so that keeps me going in cheap as chips, 1980's, kooky outfits! I try and get a work life balance right by making sure that I am a comedy making machine between the hours of 9am-3pm. Outside these hours I have a sense of humour labotomy and become ‘mama’. I am also fortunate in that I can totally milk the testosterone induced bonkerhoodness of having 3 sons and stick that on the gram; thereby I can time efficiently couple being ‘instagram feed’ funny and ‘mother 3 raising boys’ funny at the same time(I hope!)

As you are one funny lady; do you have the bad parenting days we all do and do you have a different way of coping with it? Humour maybe? Turning into someone else? Wine?

Always. I particularly loathe myself in the morning whereby I turn into screaming banshee fire-breathing mutha to get them to school. Then of course I feel guilty and crappy all day, by the time pick up comes around the guilt has worn off so I am ready to scream and shout at them all over again.  

Humour all the way baby. If I didn’t laugh, or more importantly if I didn't make others laugh then Id cry. This whole “I want to be funny” thing actually came after I had a serious breakdown after the birth of my third son. I went through a horrific season of depression and loss of self. This experience of losing so much and breaking down brought me to a place of strength. When you go to hell and back in your mind nothing scares you anymore. Even if I fall flat on my face nothing will ever be as bad as that season. We should encourage one another more as a mothering community we need to laugh more and encourage each other more to be real. Its also important to speak out and be more aware of mental health issues for Mum's.

Social media is so important today and Instagram gives anyone the tools to start something new. Has Instagram been important to you and how have you found the community on there; which are supporting your journey?

I wouldn’t have got this far without the platform of Instagram. It really has been a wonderful place of encouragement and support. A place where I feel safe to just do my thing but also where I too can support others to do their thing too. I really do believe that we each have our tribe and when we find them we have to love them hard. To coin a phrase! Some people use Instagram to climb and I get that but if you don’t invest in the dreams of others too you are eventually going to fall flat on your face.

What is next on your To Do list and what would be your ultimate dream?

The dream has always been my own comedy TV show. Before I had the boys, years ago I was on the cusp of breaking through with my own show on Channel Four. Then life took over and I got married and (lovingly) bulldozered by 3 boys!! Ten years on I have decided to just go for it.  I have just co-written and started filming a new modern family TV comedy show which is loosely based on my life as a struggling comedy actress and full time mum! Watch this space!

Lastly, everyone must leave us with a parenting confession that they have never told anyone else before…take a shot if it helps!

I’m afraid I can’t help you there as I really am a perfect mother!!!!! I can however tell you a story about a woman I know very well (not me) who gave her three boys a plate of Hoola Hoops each for dinner once when they were small to give herself a flippin break. (not me)

Well, I would love to meet her one day!! Ha Ha! 

Thank you so much and I will hopefully see you soon…watch this space people!

Interview by Sophie Farrow

Photos credited to Olga. 


Friday, 5 May 2017

Bad Mum Magazine

I started Bad Mum Magazine around September time, in 2016 and it has grown into the colourful, informative and fun website you see now.

Bad Mum Magazine represents the real bare face of parenting from real parents and people took to the idea quickly – quite frankly without them, it wouldn’t be what it is now.

I accept guest posts from people, I have regular features that appear weekly, fortnightly or monthly, I have horoscopes each month by Russell Grant, I conduct many different interviews (from Sandi Thom to the Editor of Caboodle magazine) myself, I also have a book club and Mum 2B section too.

I run the whole “thing” by myself – from running social media on all platforms to editing all the posts to filling the pages with content to answering all the emails – everything. But, I absolutely love what I do and I can honestly say, I am super proud of Bad Mum.

If you would like to appear on Bad Mum magazine, have an idea or would like to discuss work opportunities with me, then please do contact me at

To see the website click here


Interview with the lady behind the #MumBag campaign and PANDAS foundation

Unless you have been living underneath an Instagram rock recently you would have seen the very clever #MumBag campaign sweeping through everyone’s accounts, revealing photo after photo of the contents of Mum’s handbags for the world to see.
Why? Well, I had the pleasure to speak to the very lady herself who starting this whole idea and ask her exactly why this all began.
Hi Annis, thank you so much for answering a few questions about your #MumBag campaign that is supporting PANDAS charity and is sweeping through Instagram Land grabbing the attention it deserves. For anyone that hasn’t yet seen the campaign what is it and why did you start it?
So, the #MumBag campaign is an online fundraiser to raise awareness and cash for the Post Natal Depression charity PANDAS  - It’s asking for Mum’s and Dad’s to share a picture of the contents of their #MumBag or #DadBag on social media with a text to donate number.
The idea came about after I read Marie Kondo’s book The Life Changing Magic of Tidying up where she suggests emptying your handbag every day and thanking it for its hard work.
I emptied mine and was shocked by the contents – and hit by the realisation that I was a toyshop/ chemist/ cafĂ©/ bank/ entertainment system.  I thought that I can’t be alone in this so started to look inside other people’s bags on my blog to satisfy my own nosiness and purge my own scuzziness.
I asked a friend to take part who said, “OK I’ll share the shame.” And that was my light-bulb moment. I thought ‘there is no shame in that bag’. We lug it about to sustain our small people. And in the same way there is no shame in PND and mental illness, it is not baggage to be ashamed of.

What made you chose the National Charity PANDAS?
When I started to write about my experience of PND, I started to think about what would have been helpful when I had it, or realised I’d had it. The answer to that would be some support from someone that was not a doctor or someone who knew me.  So I did a little research and came across them. I approached them with the idea and they gave me the thumbs up and support to do it.
Adele recently spoke out about her PND (Post Natal Depression) which is absolutely brilliant in helping others speak out. Do you feel it is important that we make people aware of Pre and Postnatal mental illnesses and it is spoken about more freely without it being a taboo subject?
Absolutely. We are the first generation with so many platforms to share and discuss ideas and problems. And with such a strong Mama presence online at the moment who are not afraid of #keepingitreal and being warts-and-all, now, more than ever, talking about PND should be easy and un-judged.

If anyone wants to join in and share the contents (scary thought) of their handbag online, what do they need to do?
Remember – it’s not scary, it’s easy and – there’s really #Noshameinit
Here’s what to do:
  1. . Tip/ display the contents of your Mum bag on the floor and take a photo
  2. . Post it on Instagram and/or Facebook
  3. . Make sure you include all of this blurb:

I’m sharing my #MumBag (or #DadBag) to help Mum’s with Post Natal Depression

Text PANDAS £3 to 70660 to donate to
#showusyourmumbag too TAG MATES HERE

#PND #noshameinit #showusyourmumbag #showusyourdadbag
#PANDASfoundation #itsoknottobeok @pandas_uk @mrsyellowblog

Text costs £3 plus network charge. PANDAS Foundation receives 100% of your donation. Obtain bill payer’s permission. Customer care 01691 664275 Charity No 1149485.  

. Remember to text a donation
5 . Encourage as many people as you can to do the same by tagging them in your post
What is the most important item in your handbag that you simply cannot live without?
Phone, purse, pompom, pombears and pampers.
Thank you so much and please keep up the good work!
Thanks for having me!

Campaigns like this are so easy to start but you need a great idea that will catch on and the backing of a great charity like PANDAS foundation.
I was lucky enough to ask Tillie Mabbutt, Media and PR Officer from the PANDAS (Pre and Post Natal Depression Advice and Support) foundation what she thought of the #MumBag campaign and what effect it has on raising awareness for an important topic like PND.
 "The impact of a campaign such as #MumBag can be huge for a small charity such as PANDAS. They have the ability to bring together vast numbers of people to show, that no matter what is going on in life, we all have similarities.  
The #MumBag campaign really shows that we all carry 'stuff' around with us that may seem insignificant or unknown to others, but actually can display a little slice of who you are and what you have been through in life.
We rely solely on donations and grants, so by encouraging people to donate, means we have that financial help to us continue our much used services.
But it also flags us up to parents and their families who may be struggling alone at the moment and don't know where to go for help.  That means we can provide the support that is needed, where it’s needed."

Tillie also shared the contents of her #MumBag with the world!

So, it would only be right that I also share my bag too.

Please keep this amazing campaign going on its travels around the social media world and please donate to the very important charity PANDAS. The more we talk about taboo subjects the more they will become normal. There is no shame in the way you are feeling.

For any more details please go to or @mrsyellowblog on Instagram and Facebook to speak to the lovely Annis.


Interview with Milly Smith from the Selfloveclubb

Hi Milly, thank you for answering some questions for Bad Mum magazine; it is very much appreciated!

I love your @selfloveclubb Instagram account and wow, you are at 119k followers and growing by the minute (now on 123k!!) This is a massive achievement; congratulations! When do you start the SelfLoveClubb and what made you take the leap to start in the first place?
Thank you so much! Its been crazy especially since I only started my account in November! I started the account from being purely fed up of feeling inadequate, ashamed and embarrassed about my natural body. I wanted to not only improve my body image but the body image of others and hopefully spread a positive message regarding mental health out into the world.
I absolutely love Instagram and I think it is a great tool to use for free; especially starting a new venture or business. How do you find Instagram and has it been a big part of the SelfLoveClubb?
Its great and so popular at the minute, it seems everyone is using it on a daily basis! Its been huge and selfloveclubb would not have been as popular if it wasn't for instagram and the opportunity to share images to huge audiences, at the touch of a button. Its a great tool and allowed me to connect with the rest of the body positive/mental health community.

You are also taking the YouTube world by storm. I love all your YouTube videos and you are so natural in front of the camera! Was it scary recording your first one and putting it out there?
Thank you so much, that's so sweet. It was terrifying!! I was that nervous on my first video I didn't even look into the lenses, I looked into the viewfinder instead ha! I find that now I can talk to the camera quite easily and it feels a lot more natural. Its quite therapeutic for me in a way and allows me to vent my thoughts like an online diary.
You are a Mummy and the work you are doing to make us love who we are, is such an important message to send out; especially to the younger generation. How do you add this into your parenting on a day to day basis?
I agree, its a hugely important message for young men and women. I’m very mindful of the language I use about my body around Eli (my son), I won't ever insult my body in front of him. I spend a lot of time naked around him and bathing together as I want him to grow up realising nudity isn't shameful or inherently sexual! I will be very open with Eli about mental health and enforce the importance of it just as much as I would his physical health. As Momma's we are raising the future and I want to help make that future stigma free in regards to mental health and help get rid of body shaming.

It is so important for boys (and men) to learn how to respect and appreciate women and our bodies too. Has your son started to ask any questions about the work you do and what do you tell him?
Hes only 23 months at the moment so all he's interested in right now is pointing to my body parts and naming them ha! When he does start to ask questions I will be very honest and straight with him. I want to teach him about sexual consent from an early age and how to be respectful. We are a very communication based house and I want him to know he can come to me with questions about his body and that its not shameful or embarrassing.

I love your no fuck attitude towards so many things from beauty products promising us an amazing summer ready body to people’s opinions about your health. Have you always been like this or is it something you learnt over time?
I have definitely not always been like this ha ha! I used to be SO consumed within diet culture and what others thought about me. I learnt how to hate my body, use beauty products to change myself from an insanely young age like most of us do and I have had to re learn to stick a middle finger up to it all! I’ve had to learn how to respect myself and my body and stop allowing the media and others opinions into my thoughts and its been the best thing I've ever done. Letting go of diet/beauty culture has changed my world.

I see you are very open about mental health, chronic pain and suffering with your eating disorder. I have Fibromyalgia and I am normally in pain but look “normal” from the outside. Not many people know this but I also suffered with an eating disorder when I was a teenager which also come with OCD. I was living on a cracker a day. So, to see you promoting body positivity, talking about these issues and making it more accessible is vital. Do you find it easy to talk about all these issues or is something you still find difficult?   
I'm so sorry to hear you suffer also, its so dreadfully horrible when you have an invisible illness as there is always ignorant people who refuse to acknowledge your pain unless they can see it visibly. At the start of my page in November I definitely found it difficult; I would hover my finger over the post button and avoid posting it for hours before I did. Now I find it much easier, its still raw and sometimes scary but the negative ignorant comments no longer bother me and I no longer let them affect my mood. The fact that i can see it helping so many is a huge driving force for me to post quite personal and raw things, it makes every ounce of pain I have endured worth it.
You partner (who is also on Instagram @positivitypoppa) has joined you on many of your YouTube videos and he is a lovely guy, and seems so supportive. You can also find him on his Instagram page wearing a bikini!! It must be great to find a partner that totally understands what you stand for and even helps you along the way?
He is beyond amazing, words cannot express what a tremendous human he is. Hes on this journey with me and is learning as I learn and it's meant so much to me. He feels my pain and my moods too. He's my best friend and when I'm down, he's down so to learn together and support each other is so important. We’ve always been so similar but to see him starting his own male bopo account was just awesome and really meant so much to me. He gets me, he sees my passion, respects it and supports me with it and that's a beautiful thing.

You started the #mybadassbody hashtag and campaign; are you shocked at how well it has done and taken off?
I've been so overwhelmed to see people using it in their posts, it's been so lovely. I wanted to use it as a hashtag for us to celebrate the non aesthetic things about our bodies. Its been so lovely to read peoples posts about how they're appreciating their bodies and why.
You are a strong believer in Girl Power and eliminating girl hate; there is a strong Mama tribe on Instagram now that is sweeping through in a very honest way. Do you think all this honesty can only be a good thing?
I adore it! I think honesty is forever the best policy. We’ve spent so so long in a society that tells us to hide our ‘shameful’ parts or to always appear ‘picture perfect’ especially as a Momma Bear. I want people to see what its like behind the scenes, behind the happy selfies. It allows people to feel less alone, less ashamed and less likely to hide their struggles.

Lastly, everyone must leave us with a parenting confession they have never told anyone before…take a shot if it helps!
Ha ha oh gosh! Eli used to have this car that made the most annoying noises in the world, he loved it and I may have ‘accidentally’ put it in a sink of water so that it no longer worked… naughty Mummy.
Thank you again for your time and please carry on with your message and being so body positive, as we need a lot more of it!

All photos credited to Milly Smith

Interview by Sophie Farrow  

Thursday, 4 May 2017

Huffington Post - To Comment Or Not To Comment Is The Question!

Unless you’ve been underneath an Instagram rock lately you would have seen the ever growing group of females, mostly all Mum’s, taking over your feed and flooding you with their Kick-Ass vlogs, blogs and books. And, it certainly is impressive.

Article for Huffington Post UK's Life Less Ordinary series - I Watched My Stepdad Die and No Longer Fear Death

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Interview with Sandi Thom

I was lucky enough to interview Sandi Thom (singer of one of my favourite songs 'I wish I was a punk rocker') about her new single 'Tightrope' which tells a very personal story of how Sandi felt when she suffered with pre and postnatal depression after the birth of her son, Logan. 


Interiew with Dean Edwards; Resident Chef on ITV's Lorraine Show

Recently I was lucky enough to interview the resident chef on ITV's Lorraine show; Dean Edwards and girls I can report back he is very charming (and single.) 


Interview with Zoe from Dress Like A Mum

I am super excited to have another fabulous person featuring on Bad Mum. I was lucky enough to interview the lovely Zoe, the Founder of Dress Like A Mum!! 

Zoe has created an amazing Instagram account (@dresslikeamum) and website for us Mum's to feel like we can still dress like a normal human being even though we are a Mum. If you haven't already seen Zoe then read this interview and then head over to her Instagram account, to see her famous mouth open poses! 


Interview with Kayti Peschke, Editor and Creator of Caboodle Magazine


Interview with Amanda from Gage Huntley

As soon as I discovered Gage Huntley on Instagram (@shopgagehuntley) I knew I needed to speak to Amanda about her Fuck You jewellery and how she has made it happen. 

I could honestly spend a fortune on her website! After this interview please take a look and before you know it, you will be covered in bad Mama gold, too. 


Interview with Anniki Sommerville; Super Editor of Selfish Mother and part of Hotbed Collective

I was lucky enough to interview Anniki Sommerville (@annikiselfishmother) who is the Super Editor of Selfish Mother, and who has just begun on a new venture involving SEX; more below! 

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