Hi, my name is Lauren Briggs and I am a children’s book author and illustrator. I find so much inspiration for my storytelling and drawings from the surrounding beaches, parks and wildlife. My new children’s book, Little Pago is about an endangered sea turtle who mistakes floating plastic for some of his favourite food. I hope that Little Pago will inspire our next generation to turn the tide on plastic pollution and empower our children to value and protect our marine life and oceans.
Where and how long have you lived in Sydney’s east?
I have lived in the Eastern Suburbs, on Gadigal and Birrabirragal land since I was 9 years old. We lived on the cliffs of Diamond Bay and my strongest memory is falling asleep to the waves crashing against the rocks.
Three words that describe what its like to live in the eastern suburbs?
Beautiful, tranquil and a privilege.
How many children?
I have four children, a daughter and three sons who were all born within 7 years of each other. As you can imagine, we have a very busy and loud household.
The grounds and park area surrounding Vaucluse House. Centennial Park is also a big favourite.
I absolutely love Vaucluse Bay. It is a quiet and secluded bay with rocky outcrops and a low grassy reserve. When my children were much younger, I used to love bringing them to swim in the bay’s shallow waters. It is now our favourite spot to go paddle boarding, trekking along to Nielson Bay or Camp Cove.
Favourite Coffee Spot?
People who are well acquainted with me know that I love my coffee. Nuto and Blue make an exceptional coffee at Dover Café. I also love a coffee while reading the paper at Bake Bar in Rose Bay, and of course there is 222 on Edgecliff Road in Woollahra. I recently treated myself to a coffee machine at home. I love making my almond piccolo and walking to Vaucluse Bay with the dogs.
Favourite date night place?
My husband and I seem to be sharing quite a few ‘date lunches’. Some of our favourite haunts are Raw Bar – Bondi Beach, Washuku -Vaucluse (both serve delicious, fresh and seasonal Japanese fare). We also love Kuk Thai in Woollahra for an impromptu and casual bite.
Where in the east have you yet to explore and would like to go?
I would love to explore more of the east by water. So much of the eastern suburbs is surrounded by ocean and harbour. I love being in nature and now that I am a lot more proficient on the paddleboard, it’s a wonderful way to explore the coast.
What would you like to see improved in the eastern suburbs?
Woollahra council have some great environmental initiatives but I would love to see more recycling stations on busy retail streets. I would also welcome cafes and restaurants eliminating the use of single use plastic containers; replacing them with biodegradable options.
Favourite local shop?
I love my local bookshops, especially the children and young adult sections. I can definitely loose a few hours browsing fiction, design and art books.
Favourite wet weather location?
We love walking our Rhodesian ridgeback and mini dappled dachshund through the wooded grounds of Vaucluse House on rainy days. It feels very European, historic and romantic, especially when the weather is grey and wintery. The grounds surrounding Wentworth’s original 19th century mansion are lush with native wildlife, there is a kitchen garden and large grassy areas for the dogs to run around. The pièce de résistanceis the temptation of tea and scones at the café at the end of the walk!
Favourite Local family Weekend Activity?
An early Sunday dinner out all together or a walk around the neighbourhood.
Work or SAHM?
When I was pregnant with my first child, I set up a small freelance business from home. I loved the balance between having a small amount of work and the remaining time to be a stay home mother. I started my first children’s picture book when I was pregnant with my fourth child.
Enjoy. Make memories. Embrace the chaos. Always find the beauty and goodness in each child.
To purchase a copy of Little Pago – Boolarong Press