Category Archives: Motivational

Ain’t No Pleasing You – Why I really mustn’t grumble

This post is a shameful admission that I am a bit of miserable, moaning Mama. Ain’t no pleasing you is a Chas and Dave fav that myself and hubs like to sing along to. We have both mutually agreed that it is most definitely “my” song. I’ve come a long way from my song being “You’re so vain” by Carly Simon. Ain’t got no time for that shizzle anymore. Although I’ve always tried to still do my makeup most days since George arrived. Anyways, I’m waffling (blame my Dad for that trait).

Being a Chas and Dave fan it felt very apt to use two of their song titles to summarise this post. I often listen to “Mustn’t Grumble” as a way of reminding myself that no matter how tough or bad things seem, there is always worse and things always work out.

I can’t explain to you who I was Pre-motherhood but I can tell you what I wasn’t. Complaining and moaning was not on my agenda Pre-motherhood. I was known for my optimism and always being able to look for the good in everything. (Or at least I felt I was ).Yet as George gets older I feel as though I am moaning and complaining more and more.

The last thing I want to be remembered for is whingeing, moaning and sapping the fun out of everything. Never fear though. My solution to happiness is here and it starts with a theory I have. The theory as to why I may have this negative personality trait growing within me.

My desire to want the world to be a better place for George is leading me to see any negative aspects and want them hidden or fixed before he becomes aware of them.

Whereas previously I have chosen to live these past 30 years hoping on and off of a cloud. Avoiding news and turning a blind eye to anything that was less than perfect. Now I can’t just do that.

I can’t control what George witnesses and experiences all the time. No one wants their child disappointed or upset. I’m starting to realise that it’s a human emotion that we must all experience. I can’t stop it. Whether it be that you can no longer hand feed the sheep as he is so used to at our local farm. Or that the dinosaur puppet show I bigged up was actually a woman with a duster on her hand.

Nine times out of ten he is oblivious and none the wiser, happily smiling and enjoying his day. Maybe that’s the best part of me he has inherited. I’m trying so hard to go back to that part of me and stop looking for and dwelling on the negative. Be that with people, places or events.

Recently I have tried to just sing, dance or be silly to get past it. If I am starting to feel disappointed in a situation or a person’s behaviour, behaving like a child and making George giggle reminds me that the world is still ok. As mothers, parents, grandparents, we all (I would hope) want our children to live happy and fulfilled lives. I’m sure this is a natural attribute.

Miserable moan bag is not something I wish to remain a part of my personality and I shall try hard to eradicate it before it starts to rub off. The last thing I hope to create is a miserable mini moan bag.

Can you relate? Have you noticed a shift in your character or personality trait since becoming a parent? Do you think I have come to the right conclusion or could there be another answer as to why I am suddenly so critical. I have always had pretty high moral standards.

Let us know what you think in the comments below, if you would. And I’ll be sure to send some positive thoughts your way.

Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday

The blogger recognition award

The blogger recognition award. An award by bloggers for bloggers. As hubby asks why I’m sat at my laptop smirking, I sit here relishing in the fact that a fellow blogger has nominated little old me for this recognition award. I post these thought outbursts hoping that someone, anyone read them and feels a little smirk too. So to know that this has happened at least once pleases me.

So here’s thanking you, My Real Fairy. Thanks for the appreciation , the recognition and the nomination.

Now for rules.

  1. Thank the blogger who nominated you and provide a link to their blog.
  2. Write a post to show your award.
  3. Give a brief story of how your blog started.
  4. Give two pieces of advice to new bloggers.
  5. Select 15 other bloggers you want to give this award to. (if 15 is pushing it a bit for you then do 10;)
  6. Comment on each blog and let them know you have nominated them and provide the link to the post you created.

♥ How my blog started ♥

Officially my blog started in August 2015. I’ve loved writing since I can remember. My stories written at a very young age were very vivid and imaginative. With a massive creative streak in me coupled with a ridiculously  overactive imagination and several vivid dreams each night (All of which I can usually remember in great detail.) Add a need to share my crazy, overthinking thoughts with the world, (I don’t seem capable of a full on non fiction novel.) I’ve tried dozens of times and given up. Then blogging was brought to my attention. Don’t ask me where from but I knew it was for me.

I could write, whatever I wanted (within reason) and it didn’t need anyone’s approval to hit publish. As I delved deeper into the world of blogging, researching every aspect, I discovered that blogging and photography go hand in hand. I love photography. I had several professional books to take inspiration from when I was younger. I’ve never got round to taking a photography course or even investing in a ‘proper’ camera. Armed with an iphone 6 and a host of editing apps, I’ve found I can produce my own photos to make my blogging experience that more personal.

Cut to November 2016 and I knew I wanted to go self hosted to fully benefit and feel in control of my blog so I purchased my own domain name and delved into the world of html code and a other things that I’m still not sure what they are called. But I get myself through with the support of google, my web domain support team, plugin support and most importantly help and advice from fellow bloggers I know or can chat to in facebook blogging groups.

I often saw people saying the key was to find your niche and work from there. I almost drove myself crazy and gave up on blogging altogether whilst I was trying to work out my niche. Then I realised I can only be me. I’ll write what I want, when I want to and if it’s not good enough for some it will be for others.

Blogging helped me through the tough transition of giving up being a working woman with a career, to be a stay at home first time mum. It was and still is an outlet. I’m always at my most creative when I feel slightly overwhelmed or stressed out. This is my therapy, my happiness and my sole aim is to people please. I love knowing I’m made someone smile or feel like they are not alone in how they feel.

I’ve never looked back. I have my doubts here and there about sharing information so publicly. I try to set limits for myself and not show or give out any information that may embarrass George or put him at risk at any age.

♥ My advice to new bloggers ♥

  • Set yourself up with business acccounts/pages for Facebook, twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Google+, You tube (If you intend to Vlog), stumbleupon and some people use LinkedIn. Promote, promote, promote.
  • Don’t expect the world on a plate, in a day. It takes time, effort and more time.
  • Share the love. Read other people’s blogs, join in linkies, comment on other people’s blogs and social media profiles.
  • Go self hosted from the start to make your own life easier. I use WordPress plugin and I get on ok with it.
  • Share the love some more. Bloggers are on the whole a friendly bunch and your love will usually be reciprocated.
  • Enjoy it. If you enjoy writing it, the chances are people will enjoy reading it.

Best of luck

My nominations in no specific order are as follows. I’ll tweet you to let you know too.

A Moment With Franca

Odd Hogg

One Frazzled Mum

Wingin It

Diary of a Little Peach

Along Came Poppy

Mind Your Mamma

Suburban Mum

Burnished Chaos

Me and B make Tea

Mrs Morgan Plus 3

Ordinary Hopes

Mums the Word

The Less-Refined Mind

Five Little Doves

Until next time…….

Guilty as charged – Mum guilt and how to stop it.

Are you a Mum? Guilty as charged! Do you constantly guilt trip yourself? Can’t win in your own high expectations competition?

Are you a Dad? Do Dads do this too or is this just a mama thing? Does any of this resonant with you?

Here’s a typical week inside my psyche. A guilt trip diary if you will. As great as I am feeling when I edit and publish this post, this was written at a time when these feelings overpower me.  Any tips of how NOT to make yourself feel like you’re constantly failing would be much appreciated. Share the love and we all might be that bit more carefree.

Now don’t get me wrong. I’m not permanently beating myself up mentally but I do have at least one thought of guilt each day. I’m pretty sure it was a good friend that once said to me;

“Guilt is literally the most useless emotion”

Here is a typical week in the life of moi, with my guilty thoughts thrown in. Any of it sound familiar?

Monday – Take George to a morning messy play session. George had fun. Mostly he was wanting me to follow him closely so I couldn’t maintain a full conversation with any of the other mums. He always seemed to call me when it was the other mums chance to speak too.

I came away feeling guilty that I make come across as a self centred type. Disinterested in what others have to say. When in reality the kid dragged me away and if I didn’t follow him he would cry and I’d feel like a non attentive mother. Crap listener award or crap mother award guilty as charged.

Tuesday – We have been invited to meet up with friends who live some distance from us. I struggle to drive very far due to ongoing vertigo which has potentially resulted in confidence issues. This makes me feel like the plans have to revolve around me and being located somewhere I can get to by public transport. I’d like to point out this isn’t the case, it’s just my guilt. (Can hear my girlfriends shouting at the screen.) I would also love to say, to quote Charlie Puth;

“I’m only one call away, I’ll be there to save the day, Superman got nothing on me, I’m only one call away.”

But I won’t! Because unless I can burden someone else by giving me a lift then by the time public transport gets me there, the emergency will be over. Crap friend award, guilty as charged.

Wednesday – George attends nursery to allow me to get intensive jobs done at home that are easier to do without him around. Work like a maniac getting things done until I’m almost crippled by pain. Spend rest of the day suffering and unable to do much else. Crap body award – guilty as charged.

On occasions I drop George at nursery but I’m already suffering with some ailment and not good for much else but sat on the sofa watching TV. Total waste of my George free time.

Mum guilt and wasted money guilt.

Thursday – spend an epic day with George doing all his favourite activities. Farm or zoo, park or play centre. Followed by painting and playdoh at home. Making puzzles, reading books, playing cars. Finished with a bath with bubbles and more games.

Hubbies returns home from work, hoping for some loving. I feel so exhausted from plowing all my time and energy into giving George an epic day. All I want to do is curl up in front of the tele and then go to bed. Not to mention I am feeling all touched out from George.

Crap wife award – guilty as charged.

Friday – realise I’ve not seen any family this week. Try to make plans but most people have their own agendas and there simply isn’t time to fit everyone in.

Crap daughter, sister, auntie award – guilty as charged.

Saturday – hubs and I go to our regular football match. We usually try to cram in visiting relatives and some shopping and other tasks that have been put off all week. We end up eating a lot of convenience food and drink as opposed to healthy home made alternatives.

Crap eater,never gonna lose weight and stay trim award – guilty as charged.

Sunday – hubs goes to play football. Feeling lazy I park George in front of the tele with his toys and spend the morning chilling but not really being very active.

Lazy mum, lazy girl award – guilty as charged.

So you see I can’t win. As varied as my weeks are, there is always something else I could have been doing. Something I’m guilty of not doing. And therefore I stand before you as an over thinker, guilty as charged.

So how can we stop this cycle of useless guilt? The most pointless emotion that serves no purpose than to go round in a vicious circle.

  • For starters you need to promote your self worth. You aren’t superman, no one is. We all have our own capabilities and you can only achieve what you are physically and mentally able to. I’m all for pushing your boundaries but do it sensibly and within reach.
  • Give yourself mental rewards. If you can beat yourself up mentally, you can big yourself up mentally. Try to recognise something positive that you have achieved each day, each hour if you are feeling powerful! Ok that’s not realistic.
  • Write things down, bad thoughts on paper are less prevalent in your head. Good thoughts on paper can be a boost to look back on during guilty times. Even better, right the good thoughts down on post its and place them in areas you are likely to see them.
  • This article perfectly sums it up; Get off your guilt trip and gain self esteem

Please share with us your guilty thoughts and how you deal with them.

Until next time…….

Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday

A tubthumping Mother’s Day

Mother’s Day in our household was seeming like an ordinary day. Hubs was having a lie in and I was going about my normal motherly , housewife duties when this just hit me.

Seeing fellow mummies share posts of breakfast in bed and showered with gifts (shame on me for having my birthday 6 days prior) I felt compelled to start writing.

And so a tubthumping Mother’s Day was born. Read this to the tune of Tubthumping by Chumbawamba. A hit with anyone old enough to remember the 90’s. Even better, pop the tune on in the background whilst you read my ‘alternative’ lyrics. I hope it brings a smile to your face.

Tubthumping – Chumbawamba

 A Tubthumping Mother’s Day


We’ll be singing, coz we’re women, we’ll be singing.

I get no sleep, I get up in the night, I’ve got a toddler who’s screaming “Milk!”
I get no sleep, but I get up at dawn, I ain’t never gonna lie in late!
I get him milk, but he won’t go to sleep, he wants to come and sleep in my bed.
I bring him in, but he won’t go to sleep, he wants the television on instead!

Wishing my life away…..tomorrows another day.

I change a wet nappy
I change a pooey nappy
I feed the toddler
I feed the pussy cats
I check my Facebook reminds me of the good times
I check my Instagram reminds me of the better times.

Ohhh…mummy I…mummy I..want my Paw Patrolllllll!!!!!!

I get back up and I sit down again….you won’t ever let me stay sat down!
I get your yoghurt….and then I get your drink
I’m feeling like some sort of waitress now
I get no tips
I get more whining
And Daddy is god knows where right now!
I’m thinking tea and something nice to eat
But I’ll just have to make my own in this house!

Putting the toys awayyyy
Putting the toys awayyyy

I clean the litter tray
I clean the bottles
I put the laundry on
I get the hoover out
I check my Facebook reminds me of the good times
I check my Instagram reminds me of the better times.

Don’t cry for me, it will soon be Fathers Day 😜

I get back up, and I sit down again….you won’t ever let me stay sat down.
I get some food
The cats done a poo
Will I ever get to finish my mouth
I sip my drink
And it’s gone cold again
I may just as well be nil by mouth
I get no break and then I hear hubs say,
Wish Mummy Happy Mothers Day!

Until next time…..

Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday

The Best Job You Will Ever Apply For, Parenthood – The #KCACOLS Linky

Have you ever thought about that one job, the best job that you will ever apply for?

Remember when you saw that new position open within the company you’ve always admired and fantasised over? When you felt so bored of your old work life and wanted something new and exciting, so you applied for that ‘dream’ job. You told all your friends (the discreet ones anyways), about how much you wanted that new job. You tweaked your CV and practised your interview skills. And then the unthinkable happened and you got it! The job you wanted, the best job, was yours,  goodbye dreary old mundane job.

“I’m on my way to an exciting, new challenge” you told yourself.

Everyone around you, friends, family, colleagues became excited for you. Some were sad you would be leaving them but in general you was moving on to do something you had always wanted.
Finally, after much anticipation and wondering what your new job would be like, the day arrives. Will my boss like me? Will he think I work hard enough to make him happy? What if the increased hours are too much on me? The pay is a lot less, will I cope? Is it really the best job?

As the first week in your new role draws to a close, you have mixed feelings. Friends and family are still over the moon that you have embarked on a new stage in your life.

You are feeling pretty exhausted mentally, emotionally and physically. In fact you’ve hardly slept. Your boss gives you mixed signals which you are having trouble getting to grips with deciphering. One minute he’s over the moon with your efforts and all smiles. The next you have clearly done something wrong, although you are oblivious as to what, and he is screaming in your face. You only wish the company had procedures for how to deal with this but it’s up to you to work it for yourself.
Your friends and family give you advice on how they deal with their temperamental bosses but it’s not always helpful. Your boss is his own individual and wants what HE wants not what other bosses are necessarily satisfied with.

As time goes on you settle into your role more. You and your boss come to find common ground. However, he’s still a very changeable character and certainly keeps you on your toes. The pay still isn’t great but there are lots of non monetary benefits.

You have good days and bad, and days where you think about taking another promotion. It involves even more work but your boss would have less control as you would now have a consortium managing your everyday schedules.

Despite always wondering if you did the right thing by taking this job, it’s a fantastic job that you know many long to do. Your efforts are visible daily and you know the company just couldn’t thrive as it does without your input.

The best job is officially titled “Mother” or “Father”. But I prefer my badge to say Mama.

Best job
Until next time……

Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday

The Friday Bruce Almighty helped me out – That Friday Linky

Friday has arrived. The first thing to recognise about today is that it is my eldest sister’s birthday so shout out to her. She really is the most kind and caring person there is and has always mothered me. Yesterday also marked the birthday of my step sister who is the same age as me. We are 18 days apart. I feel more like we are non biological, Irish twins rather than step sisters. Hate the term step. She’s my sister.
So today has been one of those Fridays where you feel like some kind of superhero. Do you have those days? I think it’s really important to recognise days when you exceed expectations of yourself.
This particular Friday morning I had rather foolishly booked a fringe trim for 9am. George is 2 years old and an only child, whilst I’m a stay at home mum.  So I’m not used to early starts and being out of the door before 9. The person in charge of my
Book of life also decided this morning that my alarm would fail and that I would wake at 7:57am!
With under an hour to get myself and a procrastinating toddler ready, I saw he was a sweaty sticky mess and realised it was my hair washing day and the dry shampoo was something I’d foolishly left off the shopping list. (In truth I read a article a while back about it causing bald patches and I’ve not bought it since, despite loving the magic of the stuff!).
Despite all this. I somehow managed to wash and blow dry my hair. Slap on some minimalist make up. Dress and shower both myself and George. Layer us both up, with a quick kiss sending hubby on his way to work, also unblocking  the driveway for my car to leave.
I’m not sure if some Jim Carrey God type, ala Bruce Almighty, froze time for us this morning but somehow we made it on time. George even forgot to throw his routine tantrum over something ridiculous on the way out of the door.
Arriving at the hairdressers at 9.05am with a dinosaur dangled in front of George’s face to encourage him to run faster, I began to explain my morning. The staff there congratulated me on my achievement.
Big fucking deal I hear you say. Well as I explained at the start, for me, it is. So I subconsciously gave myself a little “you’re fabulous” award before settling down for a quick fringe trim.
Feeling tidy and perfected, I headed to McDonald’s for a breakfast of champions. George got some rather satisfying puddle jumping in and we enjoyed a naughty breakfast treat together. Looking at the clock I realised we had a Hartbeeps class scheduled for 10am.
Pulling up at the village hall for our regular Friday Hartbeeps sesh, I was perfecting my reverse parking manoeuvre when I heard a loud crunch. Those vertical paving slabs that were at the back of the parking bay were closer than I had realised. Again, upon looking, I found no damage. Bruce Almighty must have been at work again.
Hartbeeps was its usual crazy dancing and singing self and we got to spend time with some friends. It’s a franchise that offers classes nationwide. I can fully recommend you try it. It starts as young as a babe in arms.
We finished our crazy morning with a play session at a friends house. I had crazily decided to make some avocado chocolate brownies the night before for us mummies to enjoy. The recipe was in the free Asda magazine. They contain a lot of peanut butter and to be honest it’s hard to taste much else. My friend seemed to enjoy them. I don’t like avocado but I know it has great health benefits so this is a great way for me to sneak it into my diet.
I’m don’t practice any religion or believe in a particular holy being. I actually read an article yesterday that suggests I might be a humanist. The jury is still out on that one. But I can’t help feeling like everything was on our side this Friday morning. It may sound ridiculous but if I do have a guardian angel, they definitely gave me a helping hand this morning.
Wishing you all a fabulous Friday and a wonderful weekend. Achieve what you can and give yourself credit where credit is due.
Until next time……
 This post was taking part in #ThatFridayLinky . Organised by Twin Mummy and Daddy
Twin Mummy and Daddy
Friday, Bruce Almighty, Breakfast, Brownies and Hartbeeps.

Reasons to smile – the happy side of parenting. 

I’ve decided to share with you a few reasons to smile if you are a parent of a toddler. Sharing’s caring and all that, and if I make you smile then let me know. I’m a people pleaser so if I make someone happy, that’s makes me happy.

In this crazy world of parenting, I feel like a good majority get far too hung up on the negatives. Lack of sleep, lack of time to yourself, lack of time full stop, non stop mess to tidy, our bodies getting wrecked by these tiny beings blah blah blah. The list goes on.

Parenting does have this little known Happy sidento it. Very, very rarely though do I hear parents talking about it. When asked how they are,  parents often respond with something negative about their child, myself included. It just seems to be the norm now that if someone asks a parent “hi, how are you?” , the response is more often than not related to the child and what terrible phase or stage they are at. Well I’m here to change this trend!

Yes my toddler can drive me up the wall and sometimes I can’t wait to hand him over to someone else for an hour. But this post is to acknowledge how much happiness he brings to my life regardless of any of the struggle parenthood brings.

Kids say the funniest things. Here are some of the classics George has made me giggle with recently.

“where the fuck have you been?”. Said to me after I popped downstairs to grab my drink and bring it upstairs where we were playing. I have to admit I am guilty of saying this word a lot. Naughty mummy, I’m trying to stop I promise.
“I not go ‘flying’ through the windscreen because I don’t have wings!”. This was in response to me explaining why he needed to wear his car seat straps as in a crash he may go flying.
“Don’t worry mummy, I make you better”. Approaching me with his doctors kit after I said I had a migraine.
“Sockies don’t be scared, let’s be friends yeah”. To our cat who isn’t scared of him but the other two run away from him.
“Oh, what’s that noise outside, it’s a girl, she’s sad, she wants me to play with her”. Randomly said during an evening bath.
“Stop singing Daddy’s song!” Whilst singing Queen, Don’t stop me now. This is mine and my sisters karaoke song! When I smiled at him he questioned it! Kids! Always a “what” and a “why” to throw my way.

George is an adorable singer. At not far past two years old, he knows a variety of songs, some old school nursery rhymes and some theme tunes from his favourite TV shows. He often gets me to sing it and then says, “sing it again”. This happens about three times as he watches me intently, learning the words, then sings along with me. It’s adorable. Plus I love having a mini singing buddy and feeling like a superstar when he watches me so intently.

He now gets very excited by the arrival of daylight, jumping up and down on the bed trying to wake us up saying “wake up mummy, daddy, it’s morning time!” He will also put his head under the duvet or crawl under my pillows and declare that he’s hiding. I love his enthusiasm and world of wonderment.


So my challenge to you is to try and share something positive about parenthood next time you are asked.

I fully support sharing all emotions, following the belief that sharing is caring no matter what feeling you share. I am a huge promoter of positivity and optimism though and this post aims to show this.

Until next time……

Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday

Reasons to love and hate Christmas

So here are some reasons why to love and hate Christmas. You may relate to some of these, you may not. But however you feel about Christmas, the reality is that as with anything, Christmas is what you make of it.

So let’s start on a high with a reason I love Christmas.

christmas, magic

  1. Love:- It brings people together. Whether it’s forced or not, whether it happens on 25th December or not, people make the effort to come together at Christmas. Family, friends, neighbours, communities, they all come together to celebrate and marvel in the wonder of Christmas.
  2. Hate:- Christmas isn’t a happy time for everyone. For some it reminds them all too brutally of those they have lost. Those who are no longer around the dinner table. Then there are those who are homeless and desperately ill. For them can often just be another day of despair. Although many people now commit their time and efforts towards helping the homeless, I’m in no doubt that these services are likely oversubscribed. There are people who miss out and suffer the same as every other day. Not to forget the amazing people who work in our public services on Christmas Day, nurses, police and alike. They all give up their Christmas Day to be there to look after you and keep you safe.
  3. Love:- presents. In recent years I haven’t received as many presents. What with me being a grownup and all. We all often mutually agree to just but for the children. It’s much cheaper and we both come from a family of many siblings. Niece and nephew count this year is up to 12! But when the unwrapping commences I just love to see the smile on their faces. Hubby usually buys me something and our parents often disobey the rules claiming that technically we are their children so we receive gifts from them. I love buying, receiving, wrapping and giving presents though.
  4. Hate:- presents. Yes unfortunately as much as I love them, I also hate them. The insistence that something MUST be bought for people. I overheard a middle aged woman in the queue in M&S saying to her elderly mother, “Eugh, I’ve GOT to get you something yet!”. Talk about take the spirit out of Christmas!
  5.  Love:- The food! Oh the food! Without meaning to cause offence to anyone, I have always described myself as a fat girl in a not so fat girls body. Although trust me as I age and my metabolism slows, that and I sit on my arse a lot. I’m getting fatter all the time. Nonetheless I love using Christmas as an excuse to overindulge in all the yummy food. Just forget about points and calories and whatever else people worry about and eat, eat, eat.
  6. Hate:- The food! You’re seeing a trend here aren’t you. I love my food. I would even describe myself as a bit of a foodie. But my word, I didn’t realise I was a fussy eater until I thought about all the traditional Christmas food. Christmas pudding, mince pies, parsnips, mulled wine! Yuk! I hate them all. Then there’s the weight gain. As much as I spend Christmas minus my conscience, as soon as it’s over I feel bloated and dare not even look at the scales. The detox and healthy eating plans commence for all of 4 days until New Years and it all starts again.
  7. Hate:- The Money it costs:- Ok so you could argue that you know that Christmas is coming each year. So technically you could put some money by each month, but even this is a hardship for some. Christmas is an expense that leaves some feeling stressed or in unnecessary debt. And you could say that these people are silly to overstretch themselves but we have created a society where some kids are getting the latest technology or the must have toy for Christmas. Most parents don’t want their child to feel like they are missing out or not “good” enough. A lot of emphasis seems to be placed on the gifts you get depending on how well behaved you have been throughout the year when in fact it’s what your parents can afford.
  8. Love:-The Parties:- The obligatory Christmas work do. Despite being a stay at home mum, I still get invited to the works do where I used to work. It’s food, drink, dancing and silliness and it’s the only time of year it seems to happen. In recent years and more and more of my friends have become mummies, it’s become harder to get us all together for an evening out. Christmas seems to force this and for this reason. I love it.
  9. Love:- Father Christmas aka Santa aka St Nick. The man of many names, many a disguise and many a location. He seems to crop up in more and more places and I love him for it. I love the notion of a magical land where the toys are lovingly made and distributed by the fabulous man himself. I love visiting the grotto with my now two year old and knocking on his door waiting to see him.
  10. Hate:- Father Christmas aka Santa aka St Nick. There doesn’t seem to be a place now that isn’t cashing in on this guy. He’s cropping up in schools, supermarkets, pubs, garden centres, aquariums, even the Zoo! I’m sure there wasn’t this many a Father Christmas when I was a little un. If anything I feel it spoils the magic. You can take you child to see Father Christmas and as you are leaving you bump into another. Thankfully George is still too young to notice. Only a few weeks ago we visited the Winter wonderland at Centreparcs with my brother in law and his children. Their little boy is 4 and went in before us. When we both came out and looked at our photos with Father Christmas, my nephew pointed out that ours looked different. There was two FC’s operating at the same time in rooms next to each other! For this reason I have imposed a strict “one grotto a year” rule for George. If nothing but to try and keep him believing just that little bit longer. Kids are growing up wayyyyyy too fast these days as it is!

So there you have it. Do you agree or disagree with any? Are there any big ones you think I’ve missed? Feel free to share with us. This list expresses how I feel personally about Christmas.

Wishing you all a very Happy 2016 Christmas and a prosperous and healthy new year. X

Until next time……

You Baby Me Mummy

Gentle parenting: Saying “No!” to time-outs

This post will be focusing on our love of gentle parenting techniques, as we approach the more challenging possibly not so aptly named, terrible twos. 

pregnancy gentle parenting

When I was pregnant with George I did a lot of research into raising a child. I have never been particularly maternal but I had an inkling that should I become a parent, that I would be a pretty good one, going only on the basis of how great an aunty I was. How smug does that sound! But honestly having confidence in our own abilities isn’t the worst thing in the world. It’s not like I go round pointing fingers at people saying that’s right, that’s wrong. Although I can see some methods are a little ineffective, I still don’t believe there is a right or wrong. After all, every child, parent and lifestyle is different. And in all honesty, as much as I knew I had the capacity to be a good parent (whatever that is anyway), I was still very, very doubtful of whether my motherly instincts would kick in. To the point that I had nightmares about it when I was pregnant, and when George was born, I was very reluctant for others to hold him as I feared he may enjoy being held more by them than being held by my awkward self. Little did I know then that holding your own baby is nowhere near as scary and awkward feeling as it is holding other people’s. So back to the matter in hand;

Anyhow, I could and still can always see areas of other people’s parenting that was essentially failing. Can’t we all? Watching people lose their rag all too quickly, not watching what their children are doing when they are in danger, you know the type of stuff we all silently judge each other for. But I love a challenge and parenting is certainly that. I wasn’t prepared to have anyone silently judging me. I have to succeed. Failure from myself isn’t an option in my twisted mind. When I fell pregnant though, the pregnancy wasn’t as easy as I had imagined. That’s when I realised that this wasn’t going to be something I would be able to completely control. I could have an ideal of how I wanted it to be, whilst controlling factors such as my diet and exercise. But in the end, my body was going to do what it wanted and I was going to have to just learn to live with it as amicably as I could. Carpel tunnel syndrome, stretch marks despite using all the best potions, fluid retention, you name it, it bit me hard and there was fuck all I could do about it in the grand scheme of things, except ride it out and try and enjoy it. After all, you are supposed to be radiantly blooming aren’t you. I watched Father of the Bride 2 wayyyyyyyy too many times!

I took to social media, joining various bump and baby groups in an attempt to met some like-minded people and ensure that when bubba was born I wouldn’t be a hermit whilst all my pre-pregnancy friends worked. It was in these groups that I discovered Gentle and attachment parenting methods.

Since becoming a mum, I’ve realised that parenting is much the same as preganacy, life indeed! You can apply methods and theories to your way of parenting, but overall, your child is a living, growing person. Your child will be who they want to be. You have to learn how to leave in peaceful existence with them whilst teaching them good morals and values that they can carry through life. And as much as you fear that what you are doing could still result in them growing up to become a drug addicted, murderer (worst case scenario). You have just got to hope, pray and well just not be such a psychopath and chill the fuck out with it all. This is where gentle parenting matches how I wish to live my life and teach my son that the world is a happy, chilled place, for the most part.

Once George was born, my instincts of wanting to keep him safe and happy remained, as they had throughout my pregnancy. I never wanted him to feel sad or frustrated. I wanted to protect and nurture him in any way that I could. Being an 80’s baby I was raised as most British 80’s kids were. There was nothing wrong with it. I always insisted that I would raise my child in the same way I was raised because “I turned out alright”. But when this little 7 pound chunk of gorgeousness landed in my arms, I suddenly went all bohemian in my mindset. I wanted to do things my way and as much as I was happy to ask for other more experienced mums input, I didn’t want it imposed on me. 

This is where gentle parenting entered our lives. Gentle parenting is a compassionate form of parenting, focusing on empathising with your child and helping to support and respect their feelings as much as your own. After all they are merely humans like ourselves. I brought hubby on board. Adding him to the groups and sharing any articles I read to ensure that we were being consistent in our parenting approach. I’ve been so fortunate that he has been happy to follow the same methods and beliefs without any hesitation. Now I could tell you each and every aspect of gently parenting, what it means, how you go about it, but I think this article best explains it. Taken from the Gentle Parenting website itself. If you are a parent, just take the time it takes to drink your cuppa and have a little read. It would be so lovely if my post had ultimately let you to find ways you could enhance your style of parenting.

Taken from the gentle parenting website. http://www.gentleparenting.co.uk/kc/gentleparentingtips/

It does worry me how restrictive things might be when George enters the education system however. Thankfully his nursery doesn’t impose any limits that we disagree with yet. But it’s something we will definitely be adding to our list of things to ask when interviewing potential schools.

As a rule though, gentle parenting doesn’t back the use of time outs, naughty steps, reward charts and alike. It’s not to say George doesn’t get a sticker here and there if he does something outstanding like at the end of a play group session. But we don’t have a chart. He wears them and it’s not a consistent regime. We always discuss behaviour that could harm and then he goes about his day. If we did choose to remove him from a situation as he grew older and potentially more defiant then we would sit with him so he could vent his emotion but know he is safe with our presence. This teaches him morals and guides him towards thinking about his behaviour and why he should or shouldn’t do things. Rather than him thinking oh if I do that I’ll get a reward.

Here’s another article I have recently stumbled across to help keep us on track as the more testing “terrible twos” descend upon us. Although “touch wood”, we seem to be having an easier time than other parents around us that I see. I can’t help but wonder if this would have been different had we not led with gentle parenting.

http://news.nationalpost.com/health/no-more-time-outs-and-reward-charts-psychologist-advises-parents-ditch-traditional-approaches-to-discipline

So I hope this post has given you food for thought. And please don’t take it as me being a judgemental arsehole. I’m really not. I believe we are all entitled to parent how we wish, after all, its ultimately ourselves that have to live with the consequences.

Until next time …………

The juggling act of being a first time mum. 

Motherhood at times can only be described as a juggling act. This post is all about the juggling act of being a first time mum and how to deal with it.

I have always been fabulous at multitasking doing a million things in one day and juggling it all seamlessly without very much flapping. Ok a couple of deep breathing in the loo moments but to the outside world, unflappable. Well that’s how I view myself anyways. Others that know me may beg to differ.

Since becoming a mum though I seem to have reduced my juggling skills from 6 balls to 2. I’m quite good at taking care of myself whilst being a mum. This is my first ball. I can’t complain about not getting a chance to shower, not being able to pee by myself, or not having time to do something of a beauty routine be it moisturising, make up or a blow dry. I consider myself a master of baby distraction techniques and by using these and making things fun or allowing him to help me (so cute but in hindsight not a great idea) I have still managed these tasks. Ok I may have managed them 4 hours later than I would have pre motherhood, but I managed them none the less and felt rather guilty that I couldn’t join in with the other mums in pining for these things.

first time mum
The second ball is taking care of George. I have always managed to keep him clothed, clean, fed and watered with some entertainment and teaching thrown in for good measure. I’ve never had the “we’ve run out of clean clothes, let’s dash out and buy more” situation. We have obviously had an emotional journey with its usual difficulties. George becoming a fussy eater not long after a successful and varied weaning process and me crying a lot about most things he frustrates me with. But overall I feel like I’ve done a fabulous job with him and he is just amazing. He learns words and songs with ease. He’s approaching two and knows his alphabet, counts to ten and knows most of his colours. His speech is outstanding and he can hold a conversation with most adults without much ad-libbing from me.

first time mum
So what’s the problem? Well it’s all the other balls that I’ve dropped and have slowly rolled away. I haven’t forgotten about them and I feel partly lost without them. There’s going to work. I quit my job to become a stay at home mum when George was 13 months old. Something I’m pleased I did as it wasn’t suiting us but a ball that I miss nonetheless. This ball will hopefully be picked up again soon as I plan to retrain in a new career by enrolling on an accountancy course so I can work alongside my husband in his business. The problem is it’s nearly George’s birthday and with Christmas around the corner and a mini break booked some time back, there isn’t much spare cash left from my husbands single income to enable me to pay the first course fee. The ball is literally at my fingertips and my frustration is growing.

first time mum
Then there is the issue of my fitness. When I worked I was dashing around a hospital for 8 hours a day, 5 days a week and this was keep me fit, trim and healthy. Since becoming a mum I’ve gained two stone, two dress sizes, a bit of greedy and unrestrainable appetite and a rather disappointed opinion of myself. I’ve accepted that I’ve changed due to he marvel of creating life, but there’s only so many times you can keep replacing your wardrobe and growing out of it. This ball is something I feel I should still be holding as surely running around after a child keeps you fit and healthy. But I don’t believe that applies to a nearly two year old. A lot of my time is spent sitting and observing him to ensure his is playing safely. I’ve tried to start going for regular daily walks but often George wants to walk rather than be in the pushchair, setting the pace at a rate that I’m sure won’t burn much fat at all. So I shall be shortly turning to some you tube videos on how to involve your toddler in your workouts.

first time mum
I used to love my hobbies pre motherhood. Swimming, gardening, DIY, baking and going to watch my favourite football team. These are all grouped together in one ball. A ball that I occasionally get to mix into my juggling routine but I’ve probably only succeeded a handful of times post motherhood. This at times can feel inadequate. It makes me feel like life is passing by and I’m not achieving things I want to. But then as friends and family remind me, my greatest achievement at the moment is helping to raise a wonderful human being. And I share some fabulously fun days out with the Georgeous.

first time mum
This aside, I know these are all things I will one day do again. I now visit my footie team again but after a few seasons away I feel a bit like a stranger. I’ve also managed to add in a few new hobbies since having George including crafting, cooking more health conscious meals and learning makaton by attending sing and sign classes with George.

What really matters is that me and my family are happy and surviving. It doesn’t matter how many balls I’m juggling.

As a side note I have always considered myself a bit of a queen of analogies. It’s the easiest way for me to learn things and explain them to others. This post is based around the analogy of me juggling balls rather than actually referring to life as the mixed bag of activities that it is. However for the the more filthy minded among you I realise that this post may be giving you all a little snigger as I continually used the term ‘juggling balls’. No? Just me? O-K then. (Shrinks inside hoody) Oh dear. It’s written now and it shall damn well remain (she titters to herself).
first time mum
Until next time……