By Melissa Grant
As a first-time mum, Melanie Krasilovsky was feeling isolated when she started a blog and Instagram account documenting her daughter’s health battles. She was looking for her village and she found it, with her account attracting thousands of followers including some people she has formed friendships with in real life. After relocating from Sydney to Noosa earlier this year, Melanie is now documenting her family’s new beachside life as ‘Noosa Mum‘ and wants to connect with local mothers.
How did Noosa Mum come about?
Initially I had my blog and my Instagram account under a different name. It was towards the end of last year that I decided to change it. I started my blog a few years ago when my daughter had some health issues. I was first-time mum, she had some health issues and I felt very lonely and sort of isolated. I guess I was looking for my village. I hadn’t come across anyone who had gone through the issues I had been going through with my daughter. It was my way to write about stuff I was going through and also connect to other women and people going through similar things.
As she got older, things changed. She sort of grew out of her issues and we had planned this move (to Noosa) and I thought it was the right time to change my name so I could write about everything. I didn’t want to pigeon hole myself and write about health related stuff. I review products and I want to write more about local stuff – what we get up to now that we are in Noosa. So I have only had my name, Noosa Mum, since the end of last year. But I’ve been blogging and having my Instagram account for quite a few years now. It was called Healing Gracie’s Gut.
Were you surprised at how your blog and Instagram account took off?
Yeah, I mean I didn’t really have any expectations. It was more therapy for me to write, almost like a journal and write about things happening in our lives. Then I started to do some interviews with people and it sort of took off from there. I probably was surprised because I wasn’t expecting it to grow how it has.
Do you think there was something in particular that resonated with people?
I wouldn’t say that my blog and Instagram account are glossy. A lot of the Instagram accounts are more of a showreel. I’ve tried to keep it more raw and edited in what I post. I guess I got writing about health issues my daughter had and found that a lot mothers were going through similar issues with their children and there was a lack of support. It was sort of like having an online mothers’ group where we could chat about experiences and what we were going through.
You have been pretty open about your struggles with motherhood in your Instagram posts. How important do you think it is to be honest on a medium, which as you said can present as a bit of a showreel?
I think it’s very important, especially this year – it’s just been such an up and down year for so many people and mental health issues have increased 10-fold. I think it’s very important to be real, so women and mothers don’t feel alone. I’m all for creating awareness and being real.
You have more than 14,000 followers on Instagram. What kind of opportunities have flowed from that following?
I do get contacted a lot. My account is mixed up with different things that I’m doing. I get contacted by brands a lot and companies to review products or services. I guess it has opened quite a few doors. Also for the children, they get gifted stuff. I think I’m not going to get them much for Christmas because it just gets ridiculous (laughs). It’s not just being gifted stuff – it’s also the opportunity to connect with some amazing people and actually make some friends online who I have become friends with in real life.
You’ve said on your Instagram that you had been struggling to find friends in Noosa, so that’s helped?
It’s been a bumpy year for everyone. We moved here and that’s when Covid hit. My daughter has started school, so she has had a bit of a bumpy ride. My priority has been getting her settled. But also one of the struggles I’ve had is that my son has multiple food allergies. He’s quite young (two) and just trying to find things that are suitable for him and that I can meet people. I actually created a Facebook group (sunshinecoastmumsnoosamum) just before Covid hit. I haven’t done much with it, but the idea was to grow it so I could actually make some friends and create events where mums can meet on a weekly basis. It’s going to be something I will be making more people aware of because the goal I had in mind was to start creating some gatherings and meet-ups. There are more and more young families moving up to the coast … I’m reading that so many people are moving up here or want to move up here.
You’re originally from London and settled in Sydney. However, you moved from the Harbour city to Noosa about a year ago. What prompted the move?
I originally came here on a working holiday Visa when I was in my 20s. Then I ended up getting sponsored by work and meeting my husband (Mark) here. I was in Sydney for 14 years, we had two children (Gracie, 6 and Noah, 2). We have always holidayed in Noosa. We had the opportunity where my husband could work from home before Covid hit – now everyone is working from home! We were living in an apartment in Sydney and wanted more space. We wanted to be outdoors more. So we just sold up and here we are.
You must be loving the space and the outdoors.
It’s amazing. Having a garden has been life-changing for the kids. We love being by the ocean. My son likes scooting up and down Gympie Terrace. My daughter loves swimming, so yes we are loving it.
What are your favourite things to do with your kids on the coast?
Swimming – my daughter has become more confident and has started to improve her swimming, so we go to Noosa Aquatic Centre a lot. Scooting – they love scooting. They love scooting up and down Gympie Terrace by the river and then going to the Pirate Park for a play. We have still got so much exploring to do here. We are looking forward to exploring more of the Coast and my plan is to be documenting that. I will have a section on my blog writing more about my experiences and what we like to get up to. I did a poll on my Instagram account and a lot of people are interested in learning more about what we got up to and family-friendly things to do on the Coast. So many things and not much time!
Do you see yourself staying in Noosa for a long time?
Yes I think so. The move nearly killed me (laughs) with two young kids getting here from Sydney. But definitely – this is where we want to be long-term.
Follow Noosa Mum on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/noosa_mum