Teaching our children about our cultures is SO important. We hope that by doing so, he is able to appreciate his own culture as well as show respect for others.
Ivy Elkington is a rock-climbing mama who dwells in the beautiful mountain-sides of Utah. Her knack for artistic photography and capturing scenery is the reason why Learn To Thrivy is on my radar. Ivy blogs about embracing the little moments life, and shares that she keeps her sanity at home just by keeping things simple and organized! This relaxed boho mama shares about how she relies on faith and family to get through troubling times.
Q & A
1. First of all, congrats on the new beautiful baby! What made you choose his unique moniker, Te Kanawa?
Oh thank you! He is such a blessing. It took us a while to pick out a name, we really wanted something that was meaningful and so we went through our ancestry to find something unique and special. Eventually my mother-in-law suggested Te Kanawa (who was the brother of my husband’s great-great-grandfather) and we loved it! Also, his nickname Kana in Maori means, “to stare wildly” and we couldn’t have picked a more perfect name for our beautiful big-eyed boy.
2. You and your husband both have stunning features, so does Kana, what is your ancestry background? Where is your husbands?
You’re too kind haha. My ancestry is European, I have a little bit of everything over there from Scandinavian, to Spaniard! My husband’s background is Maori and English, his family is very proud of their Maori culture, which I love!
3. How important is it to you both to immerse your children in your cultures?
I think teaching our children about our cultures is SO important! It gives them a piece of their heritage and allows them to learn more about their ancestors and their history. We’ve made it a point to decorate our home with cultural pieces, to sing our son Maori songs, and plan on teaching him the language (which I will need to learn more about.) We hope that by doing so, he is able to appreciate his own culture as well as show respect for others.
4. You guys explore amazing mountain-sides and thick jungles. Where is home to you all?
We are actually based in Utah at the moment while my husband finishes up school. Utah for me is a love/hate. I love that all kinds of hikes, rock climbing, and other adventures are just 5 minutes away! BUT, I am a born and raised Southern Californian, and so I struggle with the cold snowy winters.
5. I love that you share about your spirituality and that you are so connected to the world. How do your spiritual beliefs impact parenting Kana?
We are LDS and love being members! We actually had a hard time having a baby, but because of our faith, we didn’t lose hope and finally was blessed with our beautiful son. Our struggle made us believe even more, and I think because of that, we have more patience, more joy, and more love for Kana. I also think that because of our spiritual beliefs, we better understand the importance of being kind and loving to EVERYONE as we are taught about Jesus Christ and the life that he lived. Basically, if you don’t support someone’s actions, you can still support that person and show them love! This is something that we want to teach to Kana daily, by our actions, and how we treat each other as husband and wife.
6. What is your best advice to a mama who is trying to simplify her life?
Prioritize and organize! As a mama you are pulled in all sorts of directions, being a mom, being a wife, working out, friends, cleaning, work, hobbies, etc. Prioritizing the important stuff first can help you keep things simple. Once you figure out what’s most important, you can dedicate your time doing those things or spending time with those people and then just don’t stress the rest. Organizing your home is important too. The more organized and simple your home is, the easier it is to take care of it!
7. Being a stay-at-home mom or working mom is a full-time job, in addition to that, do you have other jobs that you’re passionate about?
I absolutely love getting creative! You can usually find me working on a craft in my spare time, or exploring my artistic side with a painting or photoshoot. Much of our home décor is actually my work.
8. You post amazing photos of yourself and your family in nature. I’m convinced you’re a model! Who gets the honor of snapping your photos? What type of camera do you use to capture these moments?
Most of the time it’s me or my husband behind the camera with my instruction! He has a hidden talent. Occasionally I work with a professional photographer too. I own a Canon EOS Rebel T6i that I LOOOOOOVE.
9. What do you want women and bloggers to take away from your experiences on Learn to Thrivy?
I would love for women and other bloggers to feel empowered and inspired as they read my experiences. That they can do more than they think they can, that we all experiences struggles, that being a mother is hard work but worth it!
10. If you could go adventure anywhere in the world, where would you go and why?
This is a hard question, I have a lot of places I’d love to visit. Right now at the top of my list is Bali. I absolutely love the turquoise ocean, and lush plant life there, not to mention the insanely beautiful culture. One of my favorite things to do is to explore, and Bali is the place for that! I know that there are views there that could take my breath away.
Follow Ivy Elkington on Instagram at @learntothrivy