Charlotte Burgoyne is the founder of Little Voyageurs, a travel reference for cool parents who travel around the globe with their kids, and are constantly looking for new family-friendly spots, wilderness trips plus smart ideas and exclusive tips. She is the mama of two girls Celeste, 4 years old and Sanaa, 2 years old; and is expecting a baby boy this month! Born and raised in France, Charlotte moved to Syria 10 years ago to start her career as a reporter. Since then she has lived in Yemen, Qatar, Uruguay, the US and is currently in Algeria, North Africa. She founded her online magazine three years ago, out of her passion for traveling with her family (she also needed a break from covering conflicts and political matters!). Little Voyageurs is the travel reference for modern tribes. Look out for their unique City Guides curated by local mamas!
“Time and women sharing their stories and feeling will help our culture evolve”- Charlotte
What makes you a Beyond Mom?
When my first daughter was born four years ago, I realized that being a mom was not going to be enough for me. I needed to get back to work as a journalist and my husband helped me find the perfect project: starting my own online magazine focused on family travel (www.littlevoyageurs.com). This way I could manage my time as I wished, and write about two things I am passionate about- travel + kids.
It was not easy to accept that “just being a mom” was not fully satisfying for me, especially as I grew up with a solo mom who gave up her career for my sister and I; telling us it was the “most beautiful thing she has ever done”.
I faced a lot of mom guilt at the beginning and four years later, I am still trying to find the perfect balance as a “Beyond Mom”.
What are the parts of you that have grown and expanded since becoming a mom?
My patience has definitely grown a lot! I also feel like I’ve learnt more about myself, what I like and don’t like in life. My values and principles appear clearer now and I am able to define my needs better.
Do you have a Beyond dream that you are pursing?
My Beyond dream is to reach the success I want professionally and pursue my dream of a big family. I would love not to have to comprise on either of those projects. I am now waiting for baby number 3 and plan on launching my printed collection of City guides next year…We will see how that goes.
What relationships and activities help you stay connected to yourself?
Exchanging with other moms friends around me is very important to relieve everyday frustrations and guilt. I also need my daily exercise to feel good in my body. The third important thing for me is to practice, as often as possible, mindfulness to keep in touch with my feelings and be present.
Do you have a favorite quote or mantra that you live by?
I often catch myself thinking “tomorrow will be another day” so maybe we can say that’s my mantra.
What causes and topics are you most passionate about right now?
I am really passionate about mumpreneurship. I love reading and hearing about successful mumpreneurs and see how they are doing it all. I am even planning on organizing the first mumpreneur retreats in France next year with another French mumpreneur, hoping to gather mamas from around the world to compare our experiences!
How do you think we can change our culture from one in which a woman is expected to be a “perfect mother” to one in which she is encouraged to discover and explore her evolving self?
Thank you for this question, as it is very relevant to me. As I was saying at the beginning of the interview, I had a lot of pressure from my mom to be a full time mother (in her mind, the picture of a perfect mother) and making her accept my choice of being a working mom has been really rough. I feel like our relationship in the past few years perfectly illustrate what our culture think.
Explaining and sharing my feelings with my mom has helped her understand that I need to work and take some time for myself to be the best mom I can. It took four years for her to accept and understand, so I would say time and women sharing their stories and feeling will help our culture evolve a bit.
Favorite Go-To’s For:
Beyond Food (what do you cook & where do you go locally?)
Living in Algeria, I have very few resources available so I basically cook what I can! I did find kale and chard (which changed my life) but besides that I still lack a lot of ingredients to cook what I’d like. Each time I look at a recipe I miss couple of things and also I am devastating supermarkets when I travel, I never have the right ingredient when I need it. My basics are boeuf bourguignon, quiches, crepe…very French indeed!
Beyond Content (Books & Podcasts)
Currently I am reading Roald Dahl’s short stories and I love them. They are totally absurd and take me to a whole other world in only few pages. That’s exactly what I need before sleeping. Not listening to podcasts yet, but that’s definitely on my to do list.
My style is a mix of French, boho and ethnic pieces that I gather during my travels. I love second hand stores and independent local designers.
Walking, walking and walking! Plus some butt and ab exercise here and there.