Take 10: Kate Hawkesby

Take 10: Kate Hawkesby

Nothing beats the heart-pounding pride of seeing your child sing or dance or play a wicked guitar recital.

Kate Hawkesby

Personal chit-chat with this popular broadcaster and Kiwi mum …

1.  A great night out for you would go like …? 



KATE: The best night out we’ve had recently was a pre-show dinner at O’Connell Street Bistro, which has a divine little menu of three small but delicious courses. Then we went to the Robin Williams concert at Vector Arena. Great food, good wine and good laughs. Mind you, with five kids, most nights are spent at home! And we almost enjoy that more than going out!

2. If you could do anything in the world and not fail, what would that be?



KATE: At the risk of sounding like a clichéd Miss Universe runner-up … world peace. I’d rid the world of violence, hatred, ignorance and anger. Our kids deserve a better world to grow old in.

3. What books are on your bedside table?



KATE: Any book written about blended families. And (given they’re few and far between) a pad full of notes for my own book that I’m writing!

4. What’s the best thing about being a Mum. 



KATE: The little I-love-you notes and the random climb-up-on-your-knee for cuddles. Let’s face it, parenting five small children is a one-way street of take, take, take! So those unexpected, unprompted little bits of giving-back make it all worthwhile. And nothing beats the heart-pounding pride of seeing your child sing or dance or play a wicked guitar recital either. The annoying, whistling, clapping, mega-enthusiastic parent in the front row with the camera at school concerts – that’s me!

5. And the hardest thing ...? 



KATE: Knowing that, at some point, I will have to let them go. Plus the worry! And they’re not even teenagers yet – so, arguably, the worry’s only going to get worse! Also, knowing as a mother of two boys when to hit the disciplining-lecture ‘off’ button. Boys, apparently, don’t register much beyond the first three words of your well meant speech on why whizzing down the driveway with their three-year-old sister on the handlebars of their bike is a bad idea. Mind you, the arrival of a fire engine and three firemen with bolt-cutters to extract their little sister’s leg from the spokes after the bike flipped sort of put paid to my lecture. You can see why I worry!

6. If you could be stuck on a desert island with one person, who would that be?



KATE: Someone who could cook (obviously catch and kill first) … play guitar and sing to keep spirits up … build things (i.e. huts) … stay calm … and put up with my whining about “how long until we get rescued?” If you ever find that person, let me know!

7. If you weren’t a broadcaster, what else would you love to be doing?



KATE: What most so-called ‘celebs’ actually do in reality (along with ignoring the crap they write about you in the gossip pages): being a mother, daughter, sister, partner, friend …

8. What’s your fondest memory growing up?



KATE: Holidays at the beach … riding my bike along the long flat paths at Pauanui … body-surfing competitions with my brother and sister … and Dad’s Friday Night Surprise. We’d all run to the front door when he came home from work to see whether he’d bought us a liquorice strap or a 20 cent mixture – which back then was HEAPS of lollies. How many lollies we got pretty much shaped our childhood!

9. What’s the first thing you’d change about NZ if you could? 



KATE: The tall poppy syndrome, the sneering at success instead of embracing it, the parochial naval-gazing nature of a few bigots who would prefer that we were a small, white, introspective, go-nowhere society. We can do without that attitude in this beautiful country. We don’t celebrate enough how lucky we are.

10. What’s the best piece of advice you’d give a young mum? 



KATE: Hang in there, because it gets better! Love every minute, because the time really does fly – just like your Mum told you it would. A friend once said to me, “You are the best mum for that child!” – and it’s so true. Just when you think you’re doing a terrible job, remember: no one else could do it better than you, because you are their mum – and that child is a gift just for you.

Download this article as a PDF

Issue 1 2011 Take 10 Issue 1 2011 Take 10 (399 KB)