Tuesday, 7 April 2015

Babyknowledge: The lonely Mother!

Babyknowledge: The lonely Mother!: Yep, will all feel it, yep ,we all don't speak about it, yep, we all feel guilty about it! So you're at home all day, every day, y...

The lonely Mother!

Yep, will all feel it, yep ,we all don't speak about it, yep, we all feel guilty about it!

So you're at home all day, every day, you have the cutest little cherub you could have ever have imagined, you love that you don't have to go to 'work' all day and that you can enjoy a more relaxed pace of life.

Well then the shock comes, you realise that somedays you don't actually speak to any adult bar your partner, that despite the fact that you are doing the most important job in the world you feel invaluable. THIS IS NORMAL.

Before your baby arrived you probably had a successful career, your time was your own and you and your partner were on some equal footing, however when baby arrives and you are home on Mummy duty, with a saggy body and weird brain dysfunction from over tiredness and lack of stimulation, things feel like the balance shifts a bit in your partner's favour. All of a sudden your partner thinks that its your job to make tea and wash his clothes. And believe you me, this can make you feel rage and frustration like no other. If like me, you wear the trousers in the relationship (I mean come on, which woman doesn't) this can be a bit unsettling; to suddenly feel isolated and really dependent on your partner. THIS IS NORMAL, and more importantly it won't last.

When your little one comes along first comes the shock and then comes the loneliness. Why do you think I write a blog?!! Truth be told, babies don't really do that much. My advice is to take this opportunity to do all the visiting and coffee drinking you can muster. Believe me, this will set you on solid ground for preventing future boredom! When you baby doesn't move, its the perfect time to go for coffee, here's the tricky part though, every single person you know HAS A JOB! It is essential you join some mummy groups. Yes they might seem really straight, boring people who you would never normally hag out with, but stick at it. They are in the same boat as you and the longer you know them, the more honest they'll be about how they feel. And you'll need that support when you are having a down day!

Arrange weekends away. It may seem like the last thing you can be bothered to do, but having some things in your diary will give you things to look forward to.

Arrange a night out with your 'real' friends at least once a month. Go somewhere really nice so you can get dressed up, and don't talk about the baby!!

First thing in the morning arrange to go for a walk with someone - one of you fake mummy friends, invite a different one along for each day of the week, then you can see who you actually want to be friends with. Harsh? yes totally, but this is about survival. This will set you up for the day, even if you do sod all for the rest of the day at least you'll have been out of the house!

Each week, have a coffee, mummy group meeting - EVERY week. It may seem boring but you need to fill your day and so do these other mummys!!!

Find a hobby you can do that involves your bubba - photography - taking some cool snaps of your sweetheart, a blog! lol! anything that gets your creative juices flowing. This really is the time to explore what you enjoy doing and who knows where it will take you!!

Before you know it those first few months will be over and with these tips you will have weathered the storm. Good luck my lonely, blog reading, mummy mates.

Friday, 24 May 2013

Ready for labour - yes but is your partner? Dad's maternity hospital bag checklist.

As women we have a very conscious 9 months (give or take) to prepare ourselves for the birth of our little babies. Coming into the third trimester we begin to think about our maternity bags and if you're like me, start slowly packing from around 30ish weeks. With Zack I left my bag open in the nursery and would just add to it when I'd been to the supermarket or a baby shop. This gave me the opportunity to regularly see what I'd bought and what was left to get. It also meant I didn't get too overwhelmed (which was easy at the time) by having to pack everything all at once.

When early evening Friday 29th July 2010 came :) and it was time to put my maternity bag into the car, fortunately it was all ready to go and didn't cause an unneeded extra stress.

I wish the same could have been said for my partner and his 'maternity bag'. Naively I had presumed he would have managed to organise his 32 year old self; managed some forethought; realised that using the time when I am crippled in pain and have the patience of a raging bull seeing red, to think (yes this took a lot of time too) and pack some things for the hospital was an inopportune time and probably should have been done days before (especially as I was 5 days overdue). Not that I'm bitter of course!

So for all you Mum's-to-be and Dad's-to-be start to mother before your baby arrives by getting Daddy's maternity bag ready too.

This is what he should have:

Some spare underwear,
Toothbrush (just buy a new one then it's in the bag before labour day),
Toothpaste (again just buy a new travel sized one then you/he can pack it before labour day arrives),
Camera - fully charged,
Telephone list (this might be in your/his phone but make sure any numbers you don't have are on an old fashioned paper list so he can inform all and sundry on your new arrival),
Music - whether this is going to be on an iphone, or CD's tell your other half it is his job to organise,
Massage oils - you may have these in your bag, but it will be his job to use them!
Magazines, just put ones in for you, men don't admit this but they enjoy reading our mags just as much as we do. It is also a nice distraction to get your partner to read the articles aloud when you are in labour,
Water,
Snacks - just buy packaged stuff you can pack beforehand without the worry of them going off. E.g. crackers and cheese, museli bars, dried apricots (fruit), crisps, chocolate. These will be handy for your partner to keep his energy levels up - you probably won't feel like eating anything,
Jumper, if its a long labour, going through the night he might get a bit cold,
Pillow, again if its a long labour a pillow will be nice for Dad.

Now go and tell your partner this is his list, he has a week to get it organised and you're going to be checking it!!!


Thursday, 2 May 2013

Cradle cap cure

Zack had a mane to rival goldilocks, his little, tiny head was a mass of wavy, thick locks that had a life all of its own.


Beautiful and the envy of any limp, thin haired lady!

He did, however suffer from cradle cap. Cradle cap has many alias'; seborrhoeic dermatitis, crusta lactea, milk crust or honeycomb disease and is common for almost half of babies from about 3 months old. If you think about an arid cracked, sandy riverbed then you are picturing cradle cap. It is yellow and scaly and can cover baby's scalp from the eyebrows to the rest of his head.

What is it?
Well they don't know! (why don't they research these things - like morning sickness). Many health professionals believe it maybe a fungal infection. However, don't be alarmed, cradle cap is not caused from poor hygiene or an allergy your baby may have. It is also considered harmless and will eventually disappear overtime (6 to 12 months). Some arguments claim cradle cap is related to antibiotics either given to Mum or baby in the first few weeks of life. Others suggest cradle cap is caused by the over production of the sebaceous glands.

Of course there are old wives formulas which claim to prevent and cure cradle cap. I wanted to stay natural so tried them all but unfortunately none of them worked. That is not to say give them a try if you so wish, you never know it may work on your littlie.

The  old wives formulas!
Olive oil/baby oil/Almond oil/Coconut oil
Using a babybrush, dab some oil onto baby's head and brush the loose skin away. For sure, this does brush some of the scales away but they return and it doesn't get rid of cradle cap in total.

Vaseline
Cover baby's head with vaseline, leave it overnight and wash off in the morning. Nope never worked.

My health visitor is a little batty and can often suggest some things that I would nod at in her presence but would secretly be thinking she was mad and no I would never subject my baby to that. One of the things she muttered through a visit was that I should wash Zack's hair with an anti dandruff shampoo. Outraged that I would use such a strong chemical on my little one's precious head I bravely nodded my head and said of course I would try it. Well the weeks passed - without anti dandruff shampoo and the cradle cap continued. My next health visitor meeting came and she asked if I had used the shampoo she suggested. Erm yes, I lied. 'How odd' she reproached 'that always works'. Trying to hide my reddening cheeks I changed the subject thinking I'm for sure going to hell with all this lying I'm becoming accustomed to (you know; you haven't made tea because you were tired and the baby was crying all day, I'll only have a small glass of wine for a change, my baby needs that really snazzy pair of highly overpriced dungarees that cost the same as the couch but you say were given to you).

When I got home I mulled over whether I should give it a go. I used the smallest amount of shampoo it barely caused a lather and when Zack's hair dried his scalp hadn't fallen off and he still looked the same - no skin blemishes, burns etc.


By the second wash using anti dandruff I could see a noticeable difference and by the time I had washed his hair half a dozen times the cradle cap had disappeared.

Things to consider:
Zack was around 6 months old when I began using anti dandruff.
I never got any in his eyes.
I only ever used the smallest amount to wash his hair - about the size of a 5 pence piece (10 cents).
I only washed his hair once a week (at most).
Please be aware anti dandruff shampoos come in different strengths.


Sunday, 31 March 2013

GUEST POST pregnancy fitness


GUEST POST! GUEST POST! GUEST POST! GUEST POST! GUEST POST! GUEST POST!

Katie Moore has written and submitted this article. Katie is an active blogger who discusses the topics of, motherhood, children, fitness, health and all other things Mommy. She enjoys writing, blogging, and meeting new people! To connect with Katie contact her via her blog, Moore From Katie or her twitter, @moorekm26.


Make Your Pregnancy the Best It Can Be: Eat Right and Exercise

Pregnancy is one of the most beautiful experiences I’ve ever had. Part of why I loved being pregnant was the fact that I felt so good throughout my term and for the duration of my delivery. I tried my best to eat right, exercise regularly, and most importantly I enjoyed myself because the reward was a healthy body and a clear mind. I loved my experience because it made me feel so good. Before my doctor even told us how important nutrition and exercise were going to be for the health of our unborn child, my husband and I began researching all things pregnancy. We knew knowledge was going to be our best asset in making any decision. We gained knowledge about birthing options, cord blood banking, parenting styles and so on. Friends and family also helped guide us using their personal experiences that led them to have healthy pregnancies. Many woman use pregnancy as an excuse to overindulge in foods they would not normally eat so much of. However, this is not good for you or your baby. I definitely had cravings for sweets when I was pregnant, and there were times I wanted nothing more than to hit a drive-thru for salty fries and fried food three times a day. However, I was able to forgo those cravings and find healthier alternatives for my cravings. One of the best things I did for my body and my baby while I was pregnant was eating plenty of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. When I wanted something sweet I’d indulge in a piece of whole-wheat toast with a little jam or I’d dip fresh strawberries in dark chocolate for a sweet treat. When I was in the mood for salty I’d have some baked chips or light popcorn. I was able to hit the spot with each craving while still eating a healthy diet that consisted of good food that was good for my baby and me. I also drank plenty of water. When I did want something really sweet and strawberries and chocolate weren’t working for me, I’d indulge in a little frozen yogurt, which always did the trick. Of course, I did not forgo decadent desserts all the time. I had them from time to time, but I always had them in moderation, because who can resist chocolate peanut butter pie for nine whole months? Not me! Aside from eating right, I worked out while pregnant. I spoke with my doctor first to ensure that my golf, walking, and yoga weren’t going to harm my baby, or me, and she told me to go ahead. I golfed occasionally with my husband- until my stomach got in the way, and I enjoyed walking in the evenings when it was a bit cooler. I did prenatal yoga for about a half hour from time to time to get a variety of workouts. As a result of my healthy diet and exercise, my labor went relatively smooth. I can’t say it was comfortable the whole time, but I knew that I had prepared my body the best that I could. I enjoy sharing my experience about how eating healthy and exercising helped me throughout my pregnancy, just as my family and friends shared their stories with me.

Friday, 16 November 2012

Maternity Bag - Help what to take to the hospital

I'm literally going to make this a list you can check off as I feel the easier and more straight forward this is the less likely you are to forget anything.

Okay first of all choose a small travel suitcase or bag, that opens out into two sides. I thought it was much easier to pack because I could put my newborn's things on one side and my own things on the other side.

Your baby's side of the case

1) nappies   - x 8    (about) you will be able to use the hospital ones but have a few incase the midwives  are busy when you need a nappy

2) wipes   - x 1    packet, you won't use these on your baby yet as their skin is far too delicate, but they are always handy for spills, a face wash (for yourself), etc

3) face cloth   x 1   make sure you just use this on your baby

4) muslin cloths   x 4 like the wipes, they are handy for everything, when you are burping put baby on one of your shoulders incase they sick up a little

5) babygrows/sleepsuits    x 2    if you stay in longer than a day or two you can always get your partner to bring in extras

6) a 'going' home outfit      x 1    well you have to don't you?

7) hat   x 2   to keep baby's head warm when they first come out, then one for going home in

8) little jacket or outer layer    x 1   for the journey home

9) blanket    x 1   mainly to put over baby in the carseat on the way home

10) small toy   x1   put this on your body so it gets your scent, then leave it next to baby in the cot so baby knows your are around

11) towel    x 1 we didn't want to leave the hospital until we were shown how to bath Zack! novices.
(optional extras) - dummy

Your side of the case

1) underwear    x 4   at least, make them big, and granny styled

2) pyjamas or nightie   x 2    one for labour and one for after

3) water spray   x 1   some people get hot during labour and find this helps

4) toothbrush    x 1 

5) toothpaste    x 1

6 ) shampoo  x 1   travel size

7) conditioner   x 1  travel size

8) body wash   x 1 travel size

9) brush   x 1

10) make up   you might want to pit some lippy on for photos, if you're like me I couldn't care less

11) moisturiser    x 1  always, body and face!

12) face cloth   x 1  I loved this, hot face cloth after labour, freshened me right up

13) towel   x 1   you will NEED a shower after everything

14) loose trousers to go home in   x 1

15) loose tops to go home in  x 1   (you may want another outfit for in the hospital too)

16) maternity pads  x 1 packet   use these like a sanitary towel, again your hospital will provide them but you'll be amazed at how much blood appears

17) knickers   x 4

18) socks   x 2

19) maternity bras   x 4

20) bra pads   x 1 packet    put these in your bra because you will leak milk every time your baby cries, or in my case every time any baby cries!

21) nipple cream    x 1    the sooner you start on this the better - make sure it has lanolin in

22) snacks   a mixture of non perishables, and cartons of juice or water

23) camera    make sure it is fully charged and has memory space

24) plastic bags to put your rubbish, dirty washing in.

Optional extras - a pillow, a jug (gross but you fill it with warm water and pour it over your 'parts' while you are having a wee to stop the stinging sensation), magazines ( I made Phil read out a whole magazine to me from beginning to end), Ipod, or music.

Your partner - get him to throw some things in a bag now (change of clothes, toothbrush, money, phone charger, phone) - don't let him do it when you are in a world of pain and just about to leave for the hospital (like my partner did). Rules about men; they can't make QUICK decisions on what they will need and pack ridiculous things under time pressure so my advice is get him to sort himself out now to save on a future screaming match.

Once your suitcase is ready, leave it out, and open, so you can keep looking into it, it may jog your memory on something you haven't packed. I would start to pack from about 36 weeks. That way you are covered incase you go into premature labour.

Good luck all you Mummy's to be!

Sunday, 4 November 2012

Reading with your toddler

I have already written a post on how important it is to read, read, read with our toddlers but is there anything we can do to promote reading at such a young age?

The good news is you are probably already doing some of it. My little boy has just turned two and he now has an impressive selection of books. Some of my recent purchases for him are 'scanning books'. These are books where you have a large picture in the middle of the page and round the outside (or bottom) you have different pictures with the word written underneath of what the picture is of. The idea is that your child has to find the red bucket, or grey mouse etc, etc by scanning the page.



This is the first stage of reading. Honing your child's scanning skills will help them to become fluent, capable readers. As adults with years of reading behind us, we automatically scan to the end of the line we are reading. This helps us to read extremely quickly, without stopping to sound out then read each word separately. Because we have scanned to the end of the line, we already know what word is coming next. Scanning as an adult is automatic and instantaneous.

Helping children hone this skill is the first stage to preparing them for scanning to the end of lines when they can read properly. It develops their eye muscles and gets them to practice sweeping their eyes over a whole page of information.

You don't need a specific scanning book, you can use any book with pictures, start off simple, with big pictures that are in the main part of the page; where is the dog? Then start to ask them to look for more complicated, smaller pictures and use more description in your wording; can you show me where the small, grey, scared mouse is?

Even if your child has begun to read it is still a great technique for them to practice. Scanning will help them in exams and fluency. Think of the Where's Wally books, they are obviously designed for children older than a toddler and yet it is the same skill they are practicing.

Using this technique can also improve children's vocabulary. What is underneath the sideboard? Is the poodle's collar stripy or spotty? The options are endless. If you can see your toddler finds this really hard, help them and with practice they will get better. Circle where about's the object is. You don't want your child to feel they are failing so never make a big deal of them not being able to find something, show them after a few seconds if they are still looking, this is a sign you need to choose bigger, easier objects.