Imagining an alternative path…

P1020442When I first went back to work after I had A (when she was 7 months) it was a difficult time.  I was torn between being the mother I had imagined I’d be and managing the practicalities of life – mainly the finances.  One day, when I was really at a crossroads as whether to continue being pulled in different directions or give up work and be a stay at home mum, I sat down and wrote down what I honestly thought life would be like for me and A if I didn’t work.  Not what it was like for yummy mummy friends or those with more options – but what it would be like for me.  This is what I came up with.  It helped me Continue reading

New Year, New Start…

2015Well, here we are in 2015! A was born in 2012 (albeit right at the end) so right now I’m really feeling that she’s slipping through my fingers faster than ever.

So, this is the time for new years’ resolutions, reviewing priorities and defining ambitions.  I’ve never really been one for all of that in the past but this year life events seem to have coincided to spur me to do so.

Next year I am 40 – I am hoping life begins then but we will wait and see about that one.  It is a landmark birthday, one that many dread – perhaps one that signals (dare I say it) the transition to ‘middle age’.  Continue reading

A letter to those who question why ‘we’ send our much loved babies to nursery…

Mary PoppinsI know you wonder sometimes why ‘we’ (the working mums) bothered to have children if we are going to pay someone else to look after them all the time.  We’ve heard you say that ‘this time is so precious and before you know it they will be grown up and gone’.  And we know sometimes you question which we really love more – our jobs, the money or our children.   This letter is for you from ‘us’. Continue reading

The stuff memories are made of

As December approaches, my thoughts are increasingly turning to A’s birthday and Christmas.  In many ways I feel quite organised – all of her presents were bought weeks ago, party arrangements have been made and a homemade ‘Peppa’ and ‘Thomas the Tank’ birthday card has even been sent to “Milkshake’ in hope of it being read out on the day.  But what I am not quite prepared for is the influx of toys, books and other toddler themed merchandise that will hit our tiny flat and turn the living room, bedroom (and probably kitchen too) into a ‘Smyths’ toy shop (although not as well organised!).  Yes, the real preparation I need to do is to create space.  I know this could be easy, other people seem to find it easier – so why do I find it so difficult to part with anything baby related? Continue reading

The five best things I have bought for my toddler

There are many things I wish I had not wasted my money on when it comes to baby and toddler purchases – the mini blender, the baby back carrier and the bath thermometer to name but a few.  But there are some which have turned out to be the best buys – here’s my top five!

1. The ‘Kinderbox’ for book storage

kinderbox and Amber

I always wanted A to love books.  Even before she was born, she had at least ten and since then we have shared and enjoyed many different pictures and stories on a daily basis.  So by the time she turned one, she had accumulated a nice little collection.  I thought about buying a little bookshelf – but the books she had were all different sizes and shapes and would have looked higgledy piggledy. Also, children of this age need to see the covers of books and not the spines.  Although I had seen this type of book storage before in libraries and schools, it had never really occurred to me to buy it for home use.  It was incredibly difficult to track one down – I didn’t even know what they were called and Continue reading

My five best bits of advice for a first time expectant mum

Closer to You

  1. The first few days and weeks of motherhood may not be the most amazing of your life – it does get better.

We all want it to be like we imagined.  For many of us, we spend a long time imagining what it will finally be like to achieve our dreams of becoming a mum.  You’ve played the scene in your head already – after the birth where you look teary eyed at your new baby and feel an overwhelming love that melts the pain away.  Then the precious early days which you imagine will be ‘magical’ as you bond with your much wanted baby.  Well, for some maybe it is like that – but it wasn’t for me and many others that I know.  The early days are hard, you will probably spend much of it in tears and you will undoubtedly feel like you should be enjoying it more than you are.  Just because a dream has come true, Continue reading

The terrible (twos) 9 months – ???

IMG_1947A man asked me how old A was when we were in the library today.  He asked this because A was on her back screaming and kicking, I had tried to pick her up but just the slightest touch made her go rigid and her eyes burnt right through me.  So I left her there in her rage while I sat and pretended to look through a board book.  The man asked me the question because he could probably see how Continue reading