Tag: mum blog

My Birth Story: Frankie

Thursday 12th September, I had a lovely day with Mole. My mum came round and we spent the day baking cakes, doing Arts and Crafts and baking bread. Funnily enough,…

birth storyThursday 12th September, I had a lovely day with Mole. My mum came round and we spent the day baking cakes, doing Arts and Crafts and baking bread. Funnily enough, my mum joked about me going into labour that night because I was non-stop kneading bread and running around after Mole in the garden.

Later that evening, I started to experience a dull, aching pain in my lower back. Not a pain that took my breath away but one where I felt the need to sit down more often. It is completely different when you have a toddler. Your mind is so pre occupied with them that you don’t pay attention to yourself the same.

Knowing I was going into labour

I went to bed feeling okay then at 3:30am I woke up to go to the toilet, as I stood I really felt a tight back pain that seemed to wrap around to my lower stomach. This pain was completely different to any niggles and tightness I’ve felt in this pregnancy before.

I had to make the decision whether to go back to bed and try and get some rest or get ready for the hospital. As I felt the pain come back, I could 100% say it was a contraction. I didn’t want to go back to bed and lie down in case that would have slowed the process down, so I got ready, did my make-up and went downstairs to bounce around on the birthing ball.

At around 4:30am I text Jay to tell him I was going into labour. He sat with me whilst he could time my contractions as by this point it was too painful for me to concentrate timing them myself and they felt very regular. We decided to get Mole up and ready for her stay at her Grandmas, got in the car and dropped her off on route to the hospital.

Heading to the hospitalBirth Story

We arrived at the hospital at 5:45am. I was waddling across the car park and having to keep sitting down in the corridor whilst I had a contraction, as they were too painful to walk through. The maternity ward was upstairs, so we finally got seen at 6:00am.

I was doing my best to stay stood up to help him move lower down. After having a 12-hour labour with Mole, I was doing all that I could to avoid that.

Every time a contraction came, I would breathe in for 10 seconds and then out again for 10 seconds. Keeping focused helped me to stay in control. A lady once told me that she imagined a big red balloon on the sea, every time she breathed in the balloon moved towards her and breathing out the balloon moved away. For some reason, this was all I could concentrate on and I feel it helped me to beat the painkillers and keep my head focused.

When the Midwife examined me, I was shocked to hear her say 9-10cm! I was honestly expecting her to say 3cm!

It was too late for any painkillers and almost too late to run the bath for a water birth. I’m so glad Jay was there to stress to the midwife to run the bath and he helped me walk across as a water birth really helps with the pain.

That excruciating pain hit me and I knew it was time to push.

Frankie is here!birth story

At 6:11am, Friday 13th September, I had Frankie in my arms. This time around, I felt that rush of love straight away. He looked so perfect and I couldn’t wait to get him home to meet his sister. I was also in a lot of shock from my 11-minute labour. Frankie weighed a healthy 8lb 4.

Frankie had his check and all was okay other than his heart murmur and he had the jitters from mucous and the quick delivery. We had to stay in an extra night until he got the all clear.

When pregnant with Frankie, I worried that I’ll be able to love him as much as I love Mole. But, you can. Your heart can stretch even more than you would have ever thought possible!

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Qualifying for tax free childcare

The Government scheme that gives you up to £2,000 per child What is Tax-Free Childcare? It is the Government backed scheme to simply help parents with the cost of expensive…

The Government scheme that gives you up to £2,000 per childtax free childcare

What is Tax-Free Childcare?

It is the Government backed scheme to simply help parents with the cost of expensive childcare.

The scheme was launched in April 2017 and if you’re eligible, you can get an extra 20% towards childcare costs. If you are eligible, you can get up to £2,000 (£4,000 if your child is disabled)  a year per child towards the cost of childcare for free.

You can even use the funds to pay towards activities like summer clubs.

How does Tax-Free Childcare work?tax free childcare

For every 80p you spend in childcare, the government will add 20p. This essentially gives you basic-rate tax back on your payment.

You can open a centralised account to make it easy. So for every 80p you put into the account, the government will add their 20p. You can then pay your childcare provider directly from that Tax-Free Childcare account.

With the scheme, you will be able to pay for up to £10,000 of childcare.  This works out as you would pay £8,000 and get an extra £2,000 per child each year! If the childcare bill reaches the government maximum, you will not be able to get any more financial support that year. However, you can still pay childcare through the tax free scheme using your centralised account, just with no additional funding. If this happens, it may be easier to pay for your childcare directly with the childcare provider.

Do I Qualify for Tax-Free Childcare?

The scheme is open to all qualifying parents.

  • You (and your partner) need to be in work to qualify for tax free childcare – This includes self employment.
  • Available to single parents
  • Your child must be 11 or younger.
  • For children with disabilities, this is up to the age of 16.
  • You (and your partner) must be earning at least £131 a week. This is the equivalent of 16 hours/week at the national minimum wage for 25 year olds or over.
  • You’re self-employed and your income varies on a weekly basis, use your three month average to see if it meets the £131 a week minimum.
  • Each parent needs to earn less than £100,000 a year.
  • If you have been self-employed for less than 12 months, the minimum income requirement does not apply to you.
  • If you are currently not working but are due to start in the next 21 days.

If you or your partner is in work and the other is not able to, you can still be eligible, if you receive any of these benefits:

  • Carer’s allowance
  • Severe disablement allowance
  • Contribution- based employment and support allowance
  • Incapacity benefit or long-term incapacity benefit
  • National insurance credits

Can I qualify for Tax-Free Childcare whilst on maternity leave?

Yes! paid or unpaid statutory maternity, paternity or adoption leave is still classed as being in work. You just can not apply for the child that you are currently on leave for. You can use the scheme for older siblings.

Example of Tax-Free Childcare

Lt’s say that if your total childcare bill was £500 a month, you would pay £400 and the Government will pay the remaining £100. Therefore, this would cut your £6,000 yearly costs down to £4,800.

If the childcare bill for one child is £1,000 a month, you would pay £800 and have £200 paid for by the Government. However once the maximum amount of £2,000 has been given by the Government, in this case, after 10 months, you will have to pay the full total.

Who is Tax-Free Childcare best for?tax free childcare

  • Self-employed or couples earning less than £100,000 each.
  • Families with more than one child and high childcare costs.

How to sign up for Tax-Free Childcare

First of all you need to create an online childcare account here: Government Tax-Free Childcare site.

You will need:

  • 20 minutes spare
  • National insurance number
  • Unique taxpayer reference (if you are self-employed)
  • Debit card

You will pay money in using your debit card through a standing order, or a payment from your bank account. Although both parents can use the account, only one parent can open it and you will need to decide who’s name you will use.tax free childcare

The government should top the money up hours later after you put money into the account. It can take up to five working days to pay the childcare provider.

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Should you tell your daughter she is pretty?

When the question “should you tell your daughter she is pretty?” first reached my ears, I was really confused. I started to question myself if I was doing the right…

When the question “should you tell your daughter she is pretty?” first reached my ears, I was really confused. I started to question myself if I was doing the right thing as a parent and began learning to understand the reason why so many parents of daughters today are avoiding calling their daughter pretty.should I call my daughter pretty

Mole is incredibly cheeky, she loves to dance and waves her arms to the music. Her favourite thing to do is to shout out different animal names or the noises they make when she sees them on TV or in her books. In my mind, Mole is the most beautiful person I have ever seen. My heart is incredibly full for her. But, I have decided that I am going to make a conscious effort to stop telling her she is pretty.

Here is why:

Every single morning, when Mole was dressed, the first thing I would do is give her a big hug and tell her how pretty or beautiful she looked. Once I realised I was doing this without thought, I caught myself saying it through out the day too. The more we talk about a topic to our children, they begin to understand that this topic is important. It could be anything from manners to sharing. Basically, I don’t want the topic of physical appearance to be something that Mole understands as important or more important that any of her other qualities she has.should I call my daughter pretty

Living up to expectations

Always making a point to someone that they are pretty or clever will give them the mentality on what they have to live up to. They can get stuck in a comfort zone and waste time and energy worrying about this. When instead, they could be spending their time and energy into being more knowledgable and opening themselves up to a full range of experiences.

What I do to boost my daughters self esteem:

  • I focus on praising her process rather than the outcome. I will praise her for her hard work and time and effort she has spent on something. This may even be when she is older and has spent time on her hair. Commenting on that rather than just saying “You look pretty.”
  • I Tell her how much she matters to me. Showing and telling her how important she is to me and how much she is on my mind will make her feel amazing and loved.
  • I will look at her other qualities. Make them stand out whilst also using words like “pretty” and “beautiful” so she can gain a wider understanding of how beautiful and pretty doesn’t just have to be based of physical appearance. E.G. “Mole you are beautiful for being such a good friend and sharing your toy.”
  • Asking her lot’s of questions. Not only does asking your little one lot’s of questions help to boost their memory and language skills. but, asking questions really shows that you have an interest in their life. I love to ask Mole questions on where her favourite toy is or which animal am I pointing at.

 

So focus on your values and how you can get them across to your children. Becoming aware of your words will help you to stop focusing on how looks are more important than how your child behaves or thinks. Even when it is unintentional.

 

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Building your confidence for baby classes/social events

I recently attended a “Mums meet up” hosted by Mama Society. I had an amazing time and when I posted about it, I couldn’t believe how many private messages I…


tips on boosting confidence for a baby classI recently attended a “Mums meet up” hosted by Mama Society. I had an amazing time and when I posted about it, I couldn’t believe how many private messages I had from other mums saying how much they would love to attend a social event, however, they felt too anxious and nervous. It saddened me because, I had such a great time. I would love other mums to feel confident enough to attend a baby class or a mums meet up event.

At the same time, I truly understand the challenges you can face with feeling nervous and anxious, to throw yourself into the deep end and go in a room full of people you have never even met before.

Just because you have anxiety- does not mean anxiety is all you are

A little background on myself. After suffering from social anxiety for years now I feel that I have started to turn a corner with myself and realise that just because I have attended therapy sessions and have had medication for anxiety, the label “anxiety” is not who I am and not my personality.

Confidence boosting tips for attending a baby class/social event

I thought I would share with you some of my favourite ways to help combat the feeling of being nervous or anxious before a baby class or a social event and hopefully I will at least help someone reading this.tips on boosting confidence for a baby class

  1. Plan. Plan everything either the night before or two days before. Even down to your outfit and your child’s outfit, what they will have for their breakfast, dinner or snacks and anything they might need there. Having a full plan will help you to feel like you have control over what you can control, resulting in confidence. If you wake up late, everything will all be planned for you to focus on straight away and get going. Or if you wake up feeling anxious, you have a plan to stick to, which will help your mind not wander off thinking the worst of everything which may result in you talking yourself out of going.
  2.  Arrive early. I love trying (I say trying because we all know how hard this is with a child) to arrive early for a class or event I am attending for the first time because, for me personally, journeys to new places are extremely stressful. It is like I get myself that worked up, parking my car in a space takes me 100 manoeuvres. Giving yourself time to chill out before you head in and beat the rush of all the other mums parking and fighting for a space will help you to feel more relaxed.
  3. Another reason to arrive early. If you are early or on time, you are more likely to be one of the first mums there. You will have more options on where you want to sit, get your child sorted incase they need a quick change before the starting time. But, most importantly, you are not going to be walking into a room full of people, with all eyes on you, feeling the judgement. (Even though no mum will actually be judging. Your anxiety will somehow convince yourself that they are). I personally find it easier to greet a mum walking in, than having to walk up to what looks like an established conversation between two people and have to stand their awkwardly smiling until you think of something interesting to say.tips on boosting confidence for a baby class
  4. Avoid Caffeine. Dare I say it, coffee is not your friend (in this case). Why? Caffeine is a stimulant. That is not going to help someone with anxiety. Caffeine’s effects on your body are similar to those of a frightening event. Caffeine stimulates your “fight or flight” response, and studies show that this can make anxiety worse and can even trigger an anxiety attack.
  5. Questions. Have an idea on what questions to ask the other mums. Take the opportunity to get to know them. Find out what their interests are and you will probably see how similar they are to you. Remember that not all mums want to attend a social event and talk about their babies and some mums all they want to do is talk about their babies. So if you feel that the conversation is awkward, just change the subject and don’t take the bad response personally.
  6. Try again. Once I attended a class at a local church, where I did not feel comfortable. AT ALL. It was one of the first classes I attended as a new mum, living in a new area. I left half way through as my anxiety got the better of me. I sat in my car and burst into tears – even took a selfie, to look back on as one of my lows and know that one day I would laugh and not take the experience personally.tips on boosting confidence for a baby classThe feeling of being anxious and having my expectations crushed on baby classes combined with the guilt of not being a good mum to Mole crushed me. I was super firm on myself to try a different class elsewhere, I did and LOVED it.  Fast forward a few months, I attended that class I originally felt so crappy at to give it a second chance. I hated it. The same thing happened again. I left half way and cried in my car. The point I am trying to make is, some classes/events will be for you and some won’t. It does not make you a bad mum if you need to leave and give yourself time. Remember, if you have made the big enough step to even make it out of the house, praise yourself.
  7. Wear your confident hat. A trick I learnt from drama classes. Pretend you are wearing an invisible confident hat. Sounds very silly doesn’t it? Believing you are confident, standing tall, smiling, making eye contact and asking open ended questions will make you look very approachable, friendly and most important make you feel like you actually are a confident person; even though you may have lived however many years of your life labelling yourself as shy.

Give it a go

Hopefully these tips come in use for you and you feel that you can attend a class/event. Attending will be worth your while. I have met some amazing people I can call my friends and I have been able to see my daughter enjoy herself too.

 

Images by https://www.truelightphotography.net/

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5 Toddler Summer Holiday Essentials

It is that fantastic time of year again when we are all excited as we probably have a summer holiday planned. Whether you are having a staycation or flying abroad,…

It is that fantastic time of year again when we are all excited as we probably have a summer holiday planned. Whether you are having a staycation or flying abroad, I’m going to share with you my top 5 toddler summer holiday essentials for a stress free holiday.

Toddler Summer Essentials

Toddler Summer Essentials

Cool Soft Baby Blanket

Instantly cooling to the touch, this blanket has been our number one summer holiday must have. It has been so versatile, from lying it in the pram to using it as a beach mat. One of my biggest concerns with going abroad with a toddler was “will the heat be too much?” Mole struggled badly with the UK heat last year as a newborn, so when I laid eyes on this product as a baby show, I had to have it. The cooling mat must have been so refreshing to lie on in the heat. She never showed signs of being too hot once. (It’s also super light weight for your luggage too.

Snooze Shade

Toddler Summer Essentials

This stroller cover was perfect for naps. The shade cover blocks 99% of UV rays and makes the inside of the stroller nice and dark making outdoor naps a whole lot easier. The shade cover has a universal fit for most strollers and prams and only takes a few seconds to apply to the stroller.

Mamas and Papas Stroller

We purchased the: Mamas & Papas Armadillo City² Lightweight Compact Pushchair.

The stroller has a light weight frame making it easy for travelling. When travelling the amount of times you have to fold up and down the stroller is crazy.

My experience from visiting European holiday destinations has been that not all destinations are pram friendly, with having lot’s of steps to access places. Taking our usual heavy two piece pram was not convenient.Toddler Summer Essentials This stroller folds up or down in just a click, you can even do it one handed. 

There is an adjustable seat which was great for naps times as she could lie back and be comfortable and the huge UV protective hood accompanied with the Snooze Shade blocked the sun.

Toddler Travel Plate

If you’re anything like me on holiday, a big part of that time will be spent dining at restaurants. We usually order Mole’s food from the children’s menu, but to keep costs down we also like to share the food myself and Jay orders with her. This super handy travel plate rolled up in her lunch bag and came with us to every restaurant. I didn’t have to worry about her trying to throw it off the table as its made of silicone and has a good grip against the table. We had the rubber duck design of course.Toddler Summer Essentials

Banana Boat SPF

I am extremely fussy when it comes to choosing a good suncream. I can say that I have tried and tested various creams and this one is by far my all time favourite for babies and toddlers.

What I love about this suncream is, the consistency is thick so I feel at ease when I am applying it, like I am really giving her skin protection. I can feel and see exactly where I put it on her body. The cream is non greasy has the sand does not stick to it so I can have the cream fully applied in no time. Mole has very sensitive skin too, this cream has been the only one out of the many we have tried that does not make her break out into rashes.

For her hair, I used the Malibu SPF 50 Scalp Protector. (I also used this on my head too!) its very easy to use, with it being clear, you can directly spray it onto your head and hair for full protection. Toddler Summer Essentials

COMMENT BELOW YOUR TODDLER SUMMER ESSENTIALS!

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Smyths Toy Story Party

Can you remember the excitement as a child, when you visited the toy store? Butterflies in your stomach, eyes hungry for whats inside, the gasps at every latest toy! I…

Can you remember the excitement as a child, when you visited the toy store?

Butterflies in your stomach, eyes hungry for whats inside, the gasps at every latest toy!

Smyths Toy Superstore

I really want that experience for Mole. Visiting Smyths Toy Store bought back so many happy memories, of what it was like to be that excited child again. I think it is easy to get caught up in the online world, getting delivered toys, that you can miss out on fun experiences with your child and what it is like to visit the toy store.

No attention should be put on age when one thinks of toys. There’s something about toys that nurtures happiness in people.

 

Smyths Toy Superstore have gone the extra mile to ensure that your toy store experience is rememberable!

Smyths Toy Superstore

Toy Story Party at Smyths

They are hosting a Toy Story party at every local Smyths Toys Superstore, in celebration of the new Toy Story 4 coming to cinemas in June! There will be FREE face painting, DJ’s and a FREE Toy Story 4 minis, stickers and posters given away. You even have the chance to win a £50 voucher on the hour, every hour from 9am to 1pm!

When is the event?

Saturday 25th May from 9:00am

Where is the event?

Every Local Smyths Toy Superstore

Find out more and other event details here.

Smyths Toy Superstore

 

 

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Maxi-Cosi Lila Pushchair (with Duo Kit) First Impressions Review

I wasn’t expecting to have been on the hunt for a new pushchair a year later after having Molly, but, with the new addition to our family arriving in September,…

I wasn’t expecting to have been on the hunt for a new pushchair a year later after having Molly, but, with the new addition to our family arriving in September, we have had to find a new pushchair that works with our expanding family.

Maxi Cosi lila Duo Kit

Maxi Cosi Lila

What makes the Maxi-Cosi Lila the Pushchair for you? That depends on your particular needs but, what caught my eye and sold me was this:

The next best place after your arms

Maxi Cosi Lila

My goal was to find a pushchair that can easily transform from a newborn to a toddler whilst also having the option for a second child. That way, my newborn baby will have a comfortable ride and so will my one year old. The Lila pushchair has an optional Duo Kit attachment; therefore I can either have the pushchair set up for both my children, just my new born or just my toddler, saving my lot’s of pennies in the long run.

Easy to use?

Budget aside for the moment, my biggest question to myself was, how easy is the pram to use? Especially with the added duo kit? As the thought of having two children under the age of two fills me with the instant thought of chaos, I need everything in my life to be simple and stress free as possible.

When the pushchair arrived I was pleased to see it was all easy enough to assemble myself. If there were any extra pieces, it was a simple click on. E.g. the wheels simply click into place. I was able to complete the full pushchair and duo kit set up whilst Mole was having her nap. Win.

The duo kit is a separate stroller that clicks onto the frame of the Lila pushchair without any force. I couldn’t actually believe how easy it was.

The Lila Pushchair is a one handed fold down, which folds down completely flat, allowing it to be inserted into my boot without taking up too much room. I have the Audi Q3 and there is enough room for the Lila pushchair and the stroller/carrycot attachment on top (plus a few bags of shopping).

maxi cosi lila

The pushchair has options to either face me or be forwards facing. Mole prefers to be forward facing

as there is more for her to look at but I can’t wait to have my newborn facing me for that added bonding time.

An extra bonus is that the Maxi-Cosi Jade Car Seat attaches onto the Lila too, so I wouldn’t have to wake my baby up if he is still sleeping.

Maxi-Cosi Lila Cost

Lila Pushchair: £549

Duo Kit (Sold Separately): £199

Maxi-Cosi Lila Features

  • Transformable seat with multiple recline positions for use from birth
  • Reversible seat
  • Reversible, thermo-regulated mattress: breathable mesh for summer time; soft warm fleece for winter time
  • Integrated nap keeper to create additional shade
  • Big UPF 50+ canopy with peek-a-boo window
  • Rain cover and bumper bar included
  • Maxi-Cosi genuine 5-point harness
  • 4 shock-absorbing suspensions
  • Light reflectors on the canopy
  • Fast one-hand folding
  • Automatic lock
  • SmoothRide long-lasting wheels: new bi-material wheels for greater durability
  • Front wheels can be locked for more manoeuvrability
  • Removable shopping basket for easy access without excessive bending
  • Easy-braking system
  • Transforms into duo stroller for children close in age (sold separately)

 

 

Maxi-Cosi Lila has been kindly gifted. All opinions are real and honest.

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Don’t Suffer | Get Help With Debt

Take control of your finances and get back on track. Today there is more help than ever to stop your debts spiralling out of control. It is frightening enough having…

Take control of your finances and get back on track. Today there is more help than ever to stop your debts spiralling out of control. It is frightening enough having debt without it getting worse.

With this advice, you will gain confidence and an understanding on the starting point to getting your debt back on track.debt help pink mole

Where to start?

Many people will bury their head in the sand at the first sign of debt. Unfortunately, this is the worst thing to do as this will not solve your financial problems. You need to admit to yourself that you are in debt. Admitting to yourself is one of the most important steps.

One of my favourite methods is to start by writing down everything you currently owe on loans, credit cards etc. That way, you will know exactly how much debt you are in.debt help pink mole

Prioritise payments that need to be paid off first and payments that are actually manageable. Having order to your financial situation will stop you feel like you are drowning in your problems.

If you are in a relationship, talk to your partner about your current financial situation. Off loading the pressure and working as a team on how to get back on track will give you more support.

Debt Solutions

Here are some more debt solutions on offer:

Professional help

You may have tried to speak to your creditors about your debt struggles and nothing has come from it. Seek professional help.

There are many charities out there today that want to help you. They will provide free help and advice to getting your finances under control.

You can also contact your local Citizens Advice Bureau for a manageable repayment plan and they help you discuss your situation with your creditors.

Individual Voluntary Arrangement

An Individual Voluntary Arrangement (IVA) is a formal agreement between an individual and the unsecured creditors. An insolvency practitioner or debt advisor administers it.debt help pink mole

Why? Well, if you are struggling to sort out an arrangement to clear your current owed payments gradually through a debt repayment plan, an IVA is something to consider.

IVAs last for five years. During this time, you will pay an agreed amount to your creditors. Once that period of time ends, any remaining debt will be wiped out.

Do I Qualify For An IVA?

To obtain an IVA, you must fit within the criteria.

  • A minimum debt level of £5000
  • A minimum of 2 credit lines e.g. 1 credit card and 1 loan.
  • A regular income
  • The ability to pay a minimum of £90 per month into the IVA
  • An IVA should offer a higher return for your creditors than bankruptcy
  • You must live in England, Wales or N.Ireland.

You will not be able to borrow again during your IVA.

Bankruptcy

If you cannot clear your debts any other way then this option is a last resort.debt help pink mole

You can either be forced into bankruptcy by your creditors or apply for bankruptcy yourself.

If you owe £750 or more, a company can apply for you to be declared bankrupt. It is however, only recommended to those with unsecured debts of £50,000 or more.

When you declare yourself as bankrupt, other assets such as your home or your car, can be used to pay the people you owe money to.

Bankruptcy lasts for around one year. The bankruptcy will be noted on your credit file for six years. Meaning you will not be able to apply for any further credit and you will be unable to get a current account that offers an over draft. Any accounts you have, your bank will freeze them and as you may not be able to open any new accounts, you will struggle make or receive payments.

This may seem daunting. But, for some people this method has been their last resort to get out of debt.

 

Remember to always seek professional advice before proceeding with an IVA or bankruptcy.

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Planning a Day Out With Your Baby

Previously on Pink Mole we talked about how to travel with your baby on a plane, and included advice such as making sure you always have your baby’s milk on…

Planning a day out with your baby

Previously on Pink Mole we talked about how to travel with your baby on a plane, and included advice such as making sure you always have your baby’s milk on hand, and that you’ve packed enough soothers for your little one. A day out is much simpler (and much more common), especially if you’ve already planned ahead. If you have no idea what to bring on a family picnic or are unsure how to travel around the capital with a baby, here’s a checklist you can follow:

The best places in London to see with your baby

St James's Park London

Many London attractions are for young children and adults. If you have a baby, parks are probably your best option. St James’s Park in Westminster is great for all ages as it has sand pits and swings. Coram’s Fields in Bloomsbury is also wonderful with its beautiful landscapes and variety of playgrounds.

London is also very baby and mother friendly. Visit London reports its perfectly legal and widely accepted to publicly breastfeed babies anywhere in the city. There are also baby-changing facilities in almost all shopping centres, museums, and major galleries. This means you can enjoy a day out and not be constrained by your baby’s feeding habits.

The baby bag

Pexels1

What you need to pack in your baby bag largely depends on where you and your little ones are going. However, there are a few essential items that should always be in your bag. Nappies are the most important—one for every couple of hours you stay out. Baby Centre also suggests that you bring an extra change of clothes for your baby and even a spare clean shirt for yourself. You also need to pack wipes, a bottle of hand sanitiser, a few changing pads and burp cloths, as well as some plastic bags for when you need to store dirty nappies or wet clothes. Bring some snacks for you and your baby too. The Bump adds that you should bring a small first aid kit with some medicine, along with some bandages and Benadryl.

Getting around hassle free

Pexels

If you’re going to a park, a portable playpen or travel cot will certainly come in handy. For those travelling with more than one child, bring a really lightweight buggy or pushchair, as it’s the easiest way to get around without hurting your back or tiring out your children. iCandy lists the many advantages that come with buying a tandem pushchair, which includes being the same width as a regular buggy. This makes them convenient for public transport. Just make sure you download a tube map so you know where the designated areas are for buggies. Don’t travel during peak hours, either, as it may be difficult for you to get around with your baby bag and buggy (this is especially true of London rush hour). Bring some of your children’s favourite toys to keep them busy while they’re on public transport. Also note that children under five travel for free on all London public transport.

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5 Things NOT to say to new mums

I had a good think back at what was said to me during pregnancy and after pregnancy and had a chuckle at some of the things I was asked or…

I had a good think back at what was said to me during pregnancy and after pregnancy and had a chuckle at some of the things I was asked or told. Admittedly, i’ve even said some of these to new mums and had an unwelcoming response.

Let’s see if you have ever received any of these comments!

what not to say to new mums

  1. Do not ever say to a new mum that you “feel tired“. I can tell you now, no matter how tired you are from an unusual late night or early start will be nothing compared to the tiredness that a new mum feels. Believe me, they are thinking in their head all of the reasons why you should not feel tired and they do.
  2. “What is your babies routine?” I was asked this one so many time whilst Mole was a new born. I don’t mind the question so much now, but as a new mum, I felt it added a lot of pressure on to me to be perfect. It was also impossible to get Mole into a good routine with her reflux being so bad.
  3. “What’s his/her name?” The majority of the time, Mole was always referred to as a boy. To be honest, I didn’t mind so much as it was an easy mistake to make. Babies all look the same when they are newborn. Mole wore unisex clothes and had no hair. However, I can see how other mums can take offence. There has even been times when Mole has been dressed head to toe in pink and still has been referred to as a “he”. I’m going to stick to questions like “What’s baby’s name?” or “What’s your name?” looking at the baby in future.
  4. “Have you tried feeding her?” when your baby is crying. Oh my word. Am I the only one who has been asked this question? Of course I have tried feeding my baby! What do you think I have been doing all night!  This was so annoying when Mole’s reflux was really bad. She would cry so much and I felt like I was being given an abundance of advice that I really didn’t need.
  5. “It’s just the hormones.” Blaming my hormones on my right now is not exactly what I need as a new mum. I remember just thinking, “I don’t care if its the hormones, I need a hug and a little help around the house.”

So do any of those comments sound familiar? I think it is super easy to forget how intense being a new mum is. I’m 12 months on now, and due to me being pregnant with baby number 2, I’ve only just started to remember things.

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