Meet Our LagosMums Mum Of The Month: Debo Adebayo
Our LagosMums of the Month series explores frank questions with LagosMums on motherhood, their philosophies on life among other things. We always learn when we read someone else’s story and they share their experiences with us. Meet Debo Adebayo, a wife, a mother of three children, and an entrepreneur. She is the founder of Organic Baby Food Company ‘ Tomis Treats’
As our first 2016 LM Mum of the Month can you tell us some of your New Year goals?
My new year goals are split into four sections: spiritual goals, physical goals, professional goals and personal goals. Some examples of my goals are to grow stronger in Christ, to lose at least 10 pounds, to commence building a factory for Tomi’s Treats and to spend quality time with my family.
And any New Year message?
My message is ‘No Dream is too small’
Please introduce yourself and your family?
My name is Debo Adebayo and I am a wife, mother and founder of an Organic Baby Food Company called Tomi’s Treats.
How many children do you have and what are their names?
I have 3 beautiful children. Tomi age 5, who is my inspiration behind the Tomistreats brand. Keye age 2 going on 13, who is the princess/bosslady of the house and Korede age 1 who is the baby of house.
What are the different hats that you wear?
My hats are wife, mum and business owner.
Tell us about your business? Why/How did you start it?
After I had my first child, I visited Nigeria on holiday but could not find any indigenous organic food to buy for my baby. So on returning to the UK I decided to follow this idea up whilst studying for my Executive MBA and I created my own business, Tomi’s Treats.
Who are the products for and where can we get it?
Tomi’s Treats are organic fruit and vegetable purees that can be eaten from age 6 months plus. Organic foods are foods that are produced using organic methods of farming. So there are no modern synthetic inputs added into the raw materials e.g. pesticides or fertilizers. Our products have no chemicals, or sugars added to them. They are completely healthy and serve as part of ones essential fruit/veg 5 a day allowance. We currently have four flavours in the market and they are stocked in the supermarkets nationwide across Nigeria including Lagos, Ibadan, Abuja, Port Harcourt, Enugu and Kano.
Share some challenges of running a business in Nigeria.
Well in this current economic climate, the exchange rate and banks policies are challenges that we are facing. Our products are manufactured in the EU so the exchange rate and international payments directly affect us. For information on her products visit www.tomistreats.com
What are 3 characteristics you need to run a business in Nigeria?
- Patience is key. When things don’t happen as quickly as you expect, you need to be patient and not give up.
- You need to be passionate and believe in what you are doing. If you don’t then why should anybody?
- You need to be determined and focused on your goals. There are always going to be bumps along the way but you need to pick yourself up, learn from them and move on.
What support system do you have in place?
I have a strong support system with my husband, parents, mother in law and nannies. My siblings and friends have children the same age, so they also provide a great support.
How important is a support system to a mum today?
I think it is extremely important. When I had my first child, I was completely clueless about motherhood and all that it entailed. My body’s natural maternal instinct kicked in and I went through all the motions but it took a while for my mind to assimilate the fact that I was a mum. It was my support system that helped me learn how to be a mum and adjust to my new role. They supported me when I needed to take a break and spend quality time on my own or with my husband and friends.
Nanny or no nanny? How do you cope with nanny/house help issues?
With 3 kids age 5 and under, I am pro nanny. I have some friends who are amazing earth mothers and do it all on their own but I have always had a nanny helping me out. Well the nanny issue is an ongoing issue but I am learning about managing my expectations when it comes to nannies capabilities.
What has surprised you the most about being a mother?
The utter complete joy. I can be having a bad day and then my daughter smiles at me, gives me a cuddly hug or a kiss and it makes it ok. Seeing things through my children’s eyes makes everything so much fun again.
How do you balance work and family? Does the word “balance” really exist?
I think it does exist. I am big into time management. We have feed time, bath time, homework time, playtime etc. When I am at work, I am completely focused on work and at home I make sure I get quality time with my family.
What is the difference between the way you were brought up and today? (People tend to say children of nowadays are different do you agree?)
Well the world is different. With technology and social media, communication and information are easily accessible to children who perhaps are not mature enough to receive some of the information available. Also disciplining children in some Countries is now considered taboo.
What is the funniest thing you’ve heard your children say?
I was recently asked if there was another baby in my tummy to which I replied no. I was then asked why my tummy was so big then?
What one thing do you think should never be missing from every home?
Communication is essential with everyone in your home from your partner, to your children and your nannies.
How do you relax?
My main hobbies are cooking and reading. I love cooking, it relaxes me and I also love to read. However I do not get a chance to read as often as I would like to because my household is pretty noisy. I also love going to the spa and getting massages. Whenever I go on holiday, the first thing I do is visit the hotel spa.
What’s the most important skill that a Lagos Mum needs?
Multitasking! LagosMums are under pressure to be superwomen. I think in order to achieve this they have to multitask and take some time out for themselves. This will help them be better mums.
What is your philosophy on parenting?
My parents did a great job with my siblings and I. We had an amazing childhood and it’s my job to ensure my children have the same and they grow up as independent, decent people with good morals.