We ask… Taragh Loughrey Grant

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What is your first memory?
Standing in the front garden of the then family home in Malahide alongside my older brother, two younger sisters all in matching dresses (not my bro!) that Mum had made. It was a gorgeous sunny day, Mum looked beautiful in a summer dress and was taking pictures of us all (meant to be) pretending to pick flowers, when a car pulled up and one of my older sisters stepped out. In the 70s sunshine she looked like Wonder Woman’s Diana Prince.  Aged 3, I didn’t know who that was at the time but I knew she looked pretty fabulous. The whole memory is very clear, even if it is in sepia!

The last thing you think about before falling asleep is…
I think how gorgeous the kids are all tucked up (don’t they all look gorgeous when they’re cute, quiet and asleep). I’m past the stage of wanting to wake them up at this stage and happy to see them happily snuggled up, safe and sound asleep.
My very, very last thing to be very honest is my brother Tony who passed away this time last year, 32, while paint balling. A beautiful person and his passing has broken our hearts. He is with my Dad and older brother Austin and whenever we (The Clan, as we’ve named our big brood of LG’s) think of the three of them together, looking over the rest of us, we can’t help but smile. They have some of our best people up there.

Who is the most interesting person you’ve ever met?
I have been lucky enough to interview many of pop culture’s biggest names from Angelina Jolie to Morgan Freeman, from Michael Fassbender to Beyoncé, from Saoirse Ronan to Justin Timberlake but the most interesting people are always a lot closer to home.
Tony was amazing – a man whose actions spoke louder than his words – or as loud. He was a genuine eco warrior, sustainable living advocate, environmentalist, tree surgeon, big picture thinker, alternative living, liberal. His full-hearted laugh and the twinkle in his eye are what I loved the most. He inspired me, all of us and continues to do so every day. He in turn was inspired by Dad, Philip, as we all are. I have yet to meet a hard-working, more fair, charming, intelligent, loyal, spiritual, family-focused, big-thinking man – we called him The Don, and not just because his grandmother was Italian. He was the head of the family and we still miss him every day.

Have you ever been in love?
Oh yes, many times – with partners, husband, children, family and friends. I’m from the Leonardo da Vinci school of thought: “Life without love, is no life at all”. Doesn’t mean it’s easy though.

Who would be your ideal dinner guests?
Countess Markievicz, Mother Teresa (saw her speak once but would love a proper chance to talk), Steve McQueen,

Happiness is… the simple things…good company, food, music, dancing,

Who would play you in a film adaptation of your life?
Rachel Weisz is someone I really enjoyed talking to and on screen she has a broad range – she plays warm characters in a strong way. Plus she is fun, feisty and yet avoids the limelight when it’s not necessary. An all round classy lady with character and someone who you’d like to go for a pint (make mine a cocktail) and chin wag with. P.S. She can bring hubby Daniel Craig if he promises to bring his blue Bond Casino Royale shorts!

What could you not live without? The sea, beach, dancing,

Tell us a secret.
I love fashion much more than my wallet or time allows so I buy little but better than I used to and I

Why are we here?
Definitely a talking point for the dinner party above

What’s your greatest vice?
I’m not sure how immoral or wicked this is but I love to laugh, I really need to laugh. Something that I’ve inherited from my mum – only much milder – is a wicked sense of humour. If something bad happens to you – nothing too serious, mind – I will be the first to help you but I may be laughing as I pick you up. It’s terrible. My mum is a nurse, so I can see how she picked it up but also how unhelpful this personality trait can be, at times.

You are inspired by…
Women – the older I get, the more I am in jaw-dropping awe of the women in my life, what they do for those they love, their families and friends and their careers. I love knowing the ways of women – how they do what they do and why. I present a podcast series for RTÉ called The LifeStyle Show and I get to interview a wide range of inspiring people, wonderful men but mainly women including Norah Casey, fashion designer Emma Manley, jewellery designer Jenny Huston amongst others. I would love to interview almost every woman as I am continually inspired by how we juggle it all and still manage to smile, brush our hair, exercise and put on the lippy.
I did a wonderful interview with a bee keeper recently and if you know much about the work of the females in the hive, not just the queen, I see that this is mirrored here and indeed right across nature. I am a feminist but I am also a believer in equality for all. We need more he for she’s to help us there.

The song you’re most likely to sing at karaoke is…this is a little unorthodox but it’s Rage Against the Machines, Killing in the Name Of in 1992 and this was long before people made it a Christmas number one in 2009 to beat the X Factor’s winning single.

What is your guiltiest pleasure?
Oh God, chocolate. I may even adapt da Vinci’s quote above. I am always a little unnerved when people turn down their free chocolate at the coffee shop where many of us only buy coffee because of that chocolate. Firstly I think ‘Why, why would you say no? What a waste’, secondly, the coffee shop should have a donation jar full of the chocs that no one wants and those in need can have them later and thirdly, I’m not sure I trust those people who turn them down.

What is your happiest memory?
The first time I saw each of my three children – I knew them a little beforehand but to meet them face to face after their birth was pretty mind-blowingly beautiful. I remember the feelings of lying with them when everyone else was gone or asleep, starring at them for hours, listening to them, smelling them, my heart bursting for them. Perfect, real moments.

Where is your favourite place in the whole world?
The beach. Almost any long white sandy, some-pebbles beach with clean, clear inviting water, surfable waves, a breeze and lots of warm sunshine. I love many Irish, Thai, Australian, Maldivian, French ones that I’ve sampled so far.

The movie you could watch again and again is…
It’s a Wonderful Life – Frank Capra has lifted my spirits so often and I watch it every year with people I love and care for so that it helps them too.

What makes you angry?
Injustice. I have two beautiful, bright and much-loved sons and I love knowing the world is their oyster. I get very unnerved when I think that beautiful, bright and much-loved daughter has a tougher road to many of the things that come easier to our sons. This is still a mans world and the pace of change is ridiculously and frustratingly slow. In Birmingham airport last week I read a very important sign on the back of the toilet, directing women who were being flown against their will for sex trafficking to seek help. I asked my brother – there were no signs in the mens. What makes me angry is that in Ireland currently, 2017, if a mother wants her husband to adopt her son, she has to give her child up for adoption, be assessed by a social worker as to her suitability to adopt him and then her natural child receives a birth cert denying the truth that she is in fact, the birth mother.

What would you like to be remembered for?
Gosh, I would like to be remembered for being part of a wonderful family who move forward together despite many hard knocks. I would like my children to remember me as a grafter, whose love for them inspired me to be better than I ever would have been on my own. As a dancer, a dreamer, a do-er and an eager student. As part of passionate and hard working teams at work, whose drive and positive energy changes things that are not working and makes them better. As an occasional lecturer, I would also like to be remembered as a passionate and inspiring teacher.

What are you working on right now?
Rearing to Go, the new parenting series for RTÉjr and RTÉ LifeStyle on rte.ie and RTÉ News Now App where I’m the LifeStyle Lead. Plus a new podcasting series, The LifeStyle Show, that I do for RTÉ Radio 1 Extra so many multi-platform digital projects.

Taragh Loughrey Grant presents Rearing to Go: RTÉjr Talks Parenting, a brand new and exclusive online parenting series available to watch on RTÉ.ie and RTÉ Player.  Each episode explores the realities of parenting, delving into discussions about ADHD, headlice, family squabbles and much, much more.  Coming from a family of twelve, mum of three, Taragh Loughrey Grant knows the ins and outs and ups and downs of family life.  With a new episode available on Wednesdays (bi-monthly after May), find Rearing to Go, RTÉjr Talks Parenting on RTÉ Player http://bit.ly/RearingToGo