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Being a parent in the spotlight can be tricky. As well as your classic dilemmas around bedtimes, homework and screen time, there’s a level of scrutiny most of us aren’t used to.
For former Spice Girl and Heart Radio presenter, Emma Bunton, who is mum to sons Beau, ten, and Tate, seven, hitting that sweet spot between enjoying the good stuff and keeping them away from too much attention is key.
Speaking at a special family screening of Hotel Transylvania 3: A Monster Vacation, she revealed that centering them is key to keeping her kids grounded.
“I think there is a balance in everything. The kids obviously love to get the chance to come and see a brilliant premiere. They feel very lucky. We talked about it in the car… we’re very lucky to be going to watch [the film] because no one else has seen it it yet, so they feel very lucky they get to eat popcorn and we have a day out.”
Emma told us that it’s important that her kids help out around the house to make sure they stay grounded.
“I’ve got two very grounded little boys, because they have to help with chores and school and homework are very important,” she said. “We have a real balance in life and we have a strong family unit, so they get to come to some things and other things we keep them as private as possible.”
A scary thought for a lot of parents is kids reaching the age when they want to have their own social media profiles, something which will probably be amplified as people will, naturally, have an interest in celebrity offspring.
Right now, Emma’s not worried. “That’s not happening yet, they are not online. They’re far too young. We’ll have to deal with that when we come to it but there’ll be lots of talking and lots of learning together.”
With the other Spice Girls (Geri Horner, Mel B, Mel C and Victoria Beckham) all having little ones of their own, the kids and mums do get to hang out together.
“We’re a team. The kids love to hang out with each other – and it’s funny because a couple of them love singing and acting and we like to think they’re doing what we love doing.”
Speaking of Emma’s youngest, Tate had a special birthday treat, where he was allowed to go to a studio and record a song of his choice. He selected Rita Ora’s ‘Anywhere,’ which Emma played to Rita herself when she appeared as a guest on her Heart Radio show. Unsurprisingly, given his parents, he’s pretty good.
“He just loves singing and dancing, that’s all he does at home. And if that’s what he wants to do, then that’s great,” Emma said.
Emma is also a co-founder of Kit & Kin, a range of natural and eco friendly nappies and baby skin care. “As a mum, I think we have so much to worry about. The reason I wanted to work on Kit & Kin and have my own brand was because my children had eczema when they were younger and I wanted a brand that you could rely on – something really natural, something that was eco-friendly, so it’s been amazing working on that.”
Kit & Kin is trying to make parenting a little more eco-friendly. Emma explains “As mums, we put so much pressure on ourselves… with [Kit & Kin], if you get our nappies or use our products you’re making a little bit of difference. I’m not asking you to change the world, but… if you want to get involved, you’re making a little bit of difference.”
Emma and her partner, Jade Jones, have been together for over 20 years, but did they learn anything new about one another, when they became parents?
“Oh my goodness, yeah, we have been together a long time,” Emma said. “He is the most wonderful dad. We learn from each other every day – we learn from each other all the time.”
Like all parents know, making time for one another when there’s everything to do is tough. How do the couple continue to prioritise it, having been together for so long?
“We make time for each other, we go on date nights, mainly to a nice restaurant, sometimes we go to the cinema, even if we go to the park and go for a walk that’s important as well. I love all types of food – if it’s a real treat I do love going to [London’s famed Japanese restaurant] Nobu – that’s a real treat to us.”
Hotel Transylvania 3: A Monster Vacation is in UK cinemas from 27th July.