Motherhood is a demanding, rewarding, rollercoaster ride. As soon as we see those striped lines or little blue smiley faces we start planning for what it will be like when our baby is born; people ask you about names and due dates, comment about how much weight you are putting on and what type of Moses basket you should buy. You are encouraged to eat well, exercise and attend sessions where you handle knitted bosoms…
I think looking after your emotional health as an expectant mum is so important and sometimes gets lost in the expectation of ‘the baby’. Pregnancy is natural and can be ‘run through a field of wildflowers’ beautiful. Mothers may be overjoyed, terrified, lonely, sad…or a complex combination of too many emotions to list; stirred up with a bucket full of hormones and cravings for pasties. They will be TIRED, HOT and HUNGRY. With so much going on sometimes you can forget that it is just as important to look after mum as it is the tiny human they are growing. Treat yourself in any way you can, a bath, a massage, binge watching game of thrones on Netflix. ‘You time’ and appreciating the quiet is so important in pregnancy. Let’s face it it’s going to be a hectic next 18 years…
I previously discussed how vulnerable and anxious I felt when carrying my son, yet hid it with the cover of a cheery smile (See ‘Planning, or not, for a child. The emotional onslaught of pregnancy’). Family and friends can offer a great deal of help in all sorts of ways without smothering and overwhelming the expectant mother. I can imagine it is hard to be on the sidelines but support, reassurance and sometimes just to be asked what you need can feel like winning the lottery.
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Kensington Gore Publishing are proud to announce the release of CELEBRITY CHEF ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE.
The book opens with the introduction to a downtrodden Marlborough smoking employee of an obscure TV channel. I anticipated his tyrannical boss would get eaten. To save his floundering job Robert conspires to bring back to life the celebrity chef from a cooking programme recently brought by his TV Company. HOW?! With the Lazarus engine, a scientific creation of Roberts’s uncle who is rather usefully a professor. It would be a crowd pleaser programme, an instant success with the viewers, think Hell’s Kitchen but Gordon is dead.
Uncle and nephew revive the chef who is impressively loquacious for a zombie. He is also very hungry, and without spoiling the plot things take a downturn from that point. You quickly empathise with characters that are in my opinion ingeniously named. For example a zombie named Floyd Rampant…The name of my next child. Throw in some dubious unsavoury characters, a police woman who does well not to vomit, a reverend, the P.M. and a plethora of other characters who may or may not survive and you have a book that is easy to fall into and a narrative will make you hoot. The author uses simple but really tantalising descriptive, ‘a lather of excitement’. That kind of thing makes me happy. If you are offended by the odd swear and biting humour this is not for you. It’s a dark comedic horror so is also not bedtime reading for your five year old and combines cooking and Zombies so needless to say it gets rather squelchy and gory.
Don’t read whilst eating.
You will all want to read the book ‘How to Kill a Zombie Dead Quick’ especially if you live in Huddersfield. Bon Appétit.
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I read the parenting sleep books. I brought a lavender mist bottle. I haven’t had a full night’s sleep in five years, one month and nineteen days. Since the dawn of time parents have been sitting gritty eyed, infant on lap, trying desperately to get them to doze off.
During my time as a mummy I have read so much about ‘training’ your baby or child to sleep. I am not a fan of the word train…a bit too clinical and what I do with my cat. Train your baby or child to use the litter tray. Train them to walk off the leash.
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‘Babies shouldn’t sleep on their front’ I was told many sleepless nights ago…my son can’t sleep on his front, side, back, in the light, in the warm. He can’t sleep when the monster that lives in the cupboard is talking to him or when he needs a late night sandwich with the crusts cut off. Or when his hair hurts.
We tried hot milk. We put on classical music and audio cd’s but he just played imaginary cello and laughed himself crimson listening to Roald Dahl.
We tried extending his awake periods. Epic fail, if I keep him up later than seven I get a bundle of Spiderman onside wearing hyperactivity that soon slips into tears and gets ‘tangry’ (tired-angry).
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I have never kept a diary and yet, started blogging because I found writing freeing, a cathartic means of letting go, of expressing my thoughts and feelings, black text on white pages granting me a different, clearer perspective on things. In simple if I have a shitty day writing about it with a cup of tea makes me breathe easier, promotes positive emotional wellbeing and makes me more mindful of myself. It is also healthier than comfort scoffing a snickers in 3 seconds.
‘I can shake off everything as I write; my sorrows disappear, my courage is reborn.’
— Anne Frank
When I was offered to review a guided journal created by Orsolya Hernold I jumped at the opportunity. It is a little different from the family friendly products I usually feature but this journal I picked for me, for my likes and wants. A journal will take my emotional outbursts with gentle silence and not criticise for my terrible grammar. I have a five year olds and therefore have a LOT of emotional outbursts to manage, both my own and his.
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This post is about a box, and a boy, and all the good things that came from it…
Seeing Leo running around the lawn grasping a box that was increasingly getting covered in grass stains led me back down the dusty memories of childhood; I found myself hit with a feeling of nostalgia. I was once a master of the imaginary game, my sensory world when I was little being mud, water and trees.
We are an adventurous family, love the outdoors, being active and doing things together but today’s children have a new element in their lives. Technology has an impact, there is no denying it and this post is not to argue for or against it; but I will say given the chance Leo would pick screen time over most other activities (we are strict with his time but understand it will be part of the currency of his life; as young as I feel I am yesterday’s child.)
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Last Wednesday I arrived at school, early as usual, pulled out my phone and sipped from my lukewarm bottle of water. The windows were rolled down as far as they could go. Outside it was sunny with a timid breeze. Between work and school pick up is my allocated Twitter time, twenty minutes of quiet reading opportunity where I belly laugh to myself, knees resting on the steering wheel..probably looking rather deranged to any passers-by.
At ten to three I slowly wander through the playground, smiling and nodding at other mums and dad’s, waving to little ones toddling past grasping their hands. Outside the classroom I chat with the parents of my son’s schoolfellows, we huddle round the door trading sleep stories and where we have found the cheapest uniform.
Our little ones see us, small eager faces squash up against the window as they mouth inaudible things. Leo is normally delightedly saying, ‘I didn’t do any fighting!’ with a face covered in lunch, mud and occasionally red felt tip pen. I love seeing his delight when he sees me. He comes out, herded by the teacher in a sea of small people, tiny under coats, water bottles and book bags. Occasionally there will be an incomprehensible drawing on crunched up paper that is proudly presented.
A serious thought…
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Almost a year ago I moved cities. It was for many reasons, to move in with my partner, to be in a better area for my little one…I thought I had planned and considered everything, prepared myself and was excited for the change. In reality I found myself feeling lost in a new place away from my friends and familiarity. I did not know where the local parks were for sliding, the nearest woods for welly walking, the swimming pool for splashing and wearing oversized Spiderman trunks. I found Aldi in the first week but there is only so much fun we can get out of a supermarket.
Leo was soon to be starting school and I was desperate to find some local clubs so he could make some friends and burn off some of the hyperactive, you-moved-my-life-around-and-now-I-am-unsettled energy. I have always been a promoter of kiddy groups, whether baby, toddler or preschool and they have been a valuable parental resource. Especially those with free caffeine. Your little ones develop social, motor and cognitive skills, attending promotes emotional development, self-control, and they learn to communicate, to share, to follow instructions. I hoped going would provide little man with some much needed structure.
We eventually found a park 3 weeks later…
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Once upon a time…
…There was a little boy who did not want to be an artist; he preferred to be a superhero, explorer, pirate, Lego builder extraordinaire. He was a creative chap, loved to question what colours are made when mixed; but excepting a couple of occasions at school, he never asked to draw a picture. His mummy’s fridge was looking barren. She simply thought it was a lack of interest; at home they had a plethora of wax crayons, pencils, paint and pens. They tried to make pictures fun, had even tried drawing with their feet! Mummy, as someone who loved colours and creations felt a little flutter of disappointment, but knew her little boy was his own person. So she put her colouring pencils away in a draw and hoped he would one day come to love them like she did.
One morning mummy and Leo received the most amazing pack from BIC Kids who have very cleverly created a DrawyBook app and colouring story book, designed for children from 5 to 10 years old.
There was FINALLY actual palpable, shiny-eyed excitement about drawing from the little boy….so mummy decided to stop talking in the third person and give this product the marvellous review it deserved…
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I was asked if I would like to review one of @Bakerdays fab 5” Letterbox Gift cakes. The concept is like tasty witchcraft, I had never heard of ‘post cake’ as my son calls it..I wondered how on earth it would survive intact and not be drier than an old boot. There are LOADS of different personalisation choices to choose from, for every occasion possible..Easter, Mothers Day…EMOJI! Cake of the future. I of course fell in love with an obscure but totally adorable moustached cat. You can also choose the flavour, we went with vanilla because my son is a selective sponge eater. Allergies?? You can have your cake and eat it as they have Gluten and Wheat free options.
The postage is lightening McQueen quick; they can do next day delivery if you order before 2pm. Leo sat with his mouth under the letterbox (though we were unkind adults and made him wait for his birthday. There was glowering.) No annoying red note was left to say come get it from the post office..no no!It is in the most unassuming box, which I like as if you have done it as a surprise gift it looks like someone has just sent a plain parcel.
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