I’m a Mumma and a wife that absolutely loves family time and adventures, I am also a huge cactus lover! My love for Early Childhood Education started in my younger years too, a lot like Coby. I remember attending my little brother’s soccer games down at Warners Bay and the players' siblings use to be with their Mums and Dads on the sideline. I would arrive with planned activities in hand & adventures thoughtfully curated to take the little ones exploring, so the Mums and Dads could watch the game - at this stage I think l was only 10 years of age and ever since my love for Early Childhood continued to grow.
You could also say that my love for Early Childhood is in my blood with my great Grandmother owning a service at Cardiff, my Nan then owning one in Rankin Park which is now owned and operated by my Aunty and Cousin. After leaving school l studied my Diploma in Early Childhood at the International Childcare College from there l decided to further my skills and enrolled into a double degree at the University of Newcastle where l gained a Bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood and Primary Teaching.
Early Childhood is, has and will always be a huge part of my life. At the age of 26 l had my little girl Ella Rose whom is almost 5! (honestly, where does the time go!?) l decided l needed more, I needed a space where l could create the most magical play experiences and provide the highest quality of care towards all the little people that entered my door. So in 2017 l did just that and within a year of operation l was awarded with regional Educator of the year for Newcastle, Maitland, and the Hunter.
Opening Little Hideaway ELC has been the most rewarding experience of my life, it’s like when you watch your child do their many “first” things, except I get to do it with 4 different children each and every day. I get to watch them conquer new milestones, create a love for learning, a love for play and develop everlasting memories and friendships.
Little Hideaway is also how I met Coby, Coby came to me in the lead up to her opening her own Family Daycare and from then we haven't gone a day without inspiring, motivating and challenging one another.
I’m Coby-Lea, engaged to Ty, a dog mum to Ollie, a mum to be (eeeeeeek!) and I love to create & design - by that I don’t mean I am artistic, unless you count grazing tables as Art?
Ever since I was a little kid, playing ‘teacher’ with my teddies and dolls, I knew that is what I wanted to be when I grew up. I played netball, umpired and coached tiny tots, further encouraging a love for teaching. I worked extremely hard towards my dream career and all the late nights (with snacks of course!) has paid off. I studied a Bachelor of Education (Early Childhood & Primary) online, crazy right? This allowed me to work full-time in childcare whilst I was studying, because just like with children, I believe hands on is the best way to learn!
When I finally graduated, what a sweet sweet day, I worked casually as a Primary School Teacher, but my heart was pulling me back towards Early Childcare. There is just something so incredibly special about nurturing little ones from a young age, watching them learn, grow and thrive and smash milestones. So, I went back to the Early Years and worked across all age groups. This is when the idea of Family Day Care began to cross my mind. Don’t get me wrong, I was loving my career, I just knew there was something more for me. Family Day Care appealed to me because of the small group setting, meaning a more personal experience for me and the children.
So, I began researching and boy did I get excited, I just knew this was for me. With a recently built two bedroom granny flat (thanks Ty - the bestest partner in the world), I had the perfect space. With a love for shopping, sourcing incredible resources and designing, I was prepared to set the space. The next step was all that paper work and scheme stuff that you don’t need to know about, but the best thing to come from that - was meeting Katie, what a gem!