Top Celebrity Parenting Tips From….The Olivers

They’ve been married for nearly 20 years, have five happy children (and rumours of a possible sixth). But what can chef, Jamie Oliver and his wife Jools, teach us about raising children?

Jools and Jamie Oliver with their children Poppy and Daisy.

1Keep tabs on your kids

Wouldn’t it be great to know where your teenagers are at all times?  Well, Jamie does.  He recently revealed in an interview with Woman magazine that he keeps track of his teenage girls Rosie and Poppy via an app called Life360, which tells him exactly where they are.  ‘So if one of the girls says, “I’m going to Camden Town” and I can see they’ve gone to Reading, then we have a problem,” he says.

Tracking your children may not make you the most popular parent, but it could certainly help keep your mind at rest.

2Relax about the rules

As Jamie has campaigned for years for healthier school meals, it would be easy to imagine that the Oliver family live solely from ultra-healthy, home-cooked fare.  Whilst for the most part this is true, Jamie’s relaxed about the occasional ‘cheat.’  In a recent article in Hello, he told readers because he offered mainly healthy choices at home, he would be “quite relaxed” about one of his children going to McDonalds.  “I… wouldn’t be upset because I know at home, we largely give her only good options,” he said.

So whilst it’s a no to overindulgence, Jamie understands that some rules are there to be broken – if only on special occasions.

3Admit that it’s hard

In a world where it seems everyone is living the perfect life (that is, if you trust their social media) it’s great that both Jools and Jamie acknowledge that parenting can be pretty hard work at times.  On a podcast for Made by Mammas, 43-year-old Jools told listeners that she feels her job as a mum is “ten times harder” than Jamie’s work. 

Jamie, too, has confessed to his own parenting struggles in an interview for Woman’s Weekly magazine, telling readers “Jools and I have struggled at times,” and explaining his difficulties in adjusting as the girls grew up from children to young women: “You have to retune from having a child to a young woman.”

4Be hands on

Whether it’s a bit of rough-and-tumble with Jamie or cuddles and kisses with Jools, it seems the Olivers are true hands-on parents.  In a recent article in The Grace Tales, Jools confessed that “Jamie and I are very loving and affectionate with our children, we’re very demonstrative with our cuddles and vocal with the ‘I love yous’” despite also admitting that it “embarrasses the older ones.”

Jools also praised Jamie’s hands-on parenting in the Made by Mammas podcast, “He’s very good. He is den building, going on water, rafting, doing all sorts of things upside down,” she said.

5Keep a tight rein

Life for the Oliver children sounds like fun, but Jools and Jamie also make sure they keep the little ones in line when necessary.  Speaking in an interview with Woman and Home magazine, Jamie described Jools as running “a tight ship” when it came to discipline.

The chef, who admits that he was also brought up with a “bit of discipline,” also told readers that he could sometimes apply a bit of “tough love, like ‘Fall into line or crack on in your room’ and naughty corner stuff.”

With healthy balanced meals and a healthy balance of love and discipline, it seems the Olivers are doing a pretty good job as parents.