Posted in Blogs, Family, irish bloggers, life, LifeStyle, parent bloggers, Uncategorized

Social Media Boasting…sorry Bashing

The funny thing about parenting is ….that shock, horror, parents post pictures of their children online.

I read a piece recently in the Irish Times. It actually didn’t have any purpose, any opinions so to speak except for being a little vent about all the latest photos of kids online.

But hey, what would I know. I am one of those mothers that posts pictures of my child on Instagram, on Facebook and on Twitter. And I surely must be doing this to just show off as I must not mention the bad times.

This actually couldn’t be further from the truth.

I did not post my pregnancy news on Facebook. Very few people knew I was pregnant. This was probably down to the fact that subconsciously I was afraid of people being ‘judgey’ and by that I mean as in ‘oh look at her posting her pregnancy news, now all we’re going to hear about is the baby this and baby that’. Interestingly enough, when I eventually posted a photo of myself and the hubby posing beside a pram-it actually got more likes and comments than even my wedding photos. With that came ‘where are the baby pictures and why didn’t you post pictures of your bump?!’. I lived in London at the time and family were kept up to date via various means of communication-from FaceTime to album sharing. It was only when Paige was 7 months old that I realised that there was this huge community online that I knew nothing about and probably could’ve utilised when I was on maternity leave. It was also 3 days before I returned to work that I posted an actual picture of Paige on my Facebook. One where everyone could see her cute little face and hairless head. Since then, I have gone on to post hundreds(and I mean hundreds) of pictures of her on Instagram and not so many hundreds on Facebook. But the reality is, my pictures of me apparently boasting on Facebook receive many, many more likes than me tagging into Coppers (one time people, one time!). Surely I can’t be the only one who looks at my Facebook Staus Bar thinking really?! What am I meant to say?!

If you’ve been on Facebook for X amount of years, you’ve probably checked into tonnes of places and in reality now you’re just sat at home watching X Factor on a Saturday night. I think the reality is that as we grow older, we evolve and yeap, that means people start having babies and they pretty much consume all their time. I also think we kind of get fed up checking into places as we’ve probably been there already.

Within my friends group on Facebook, the majority are settling down, getting married, buying houses and along come the little sprogs who manage to get more likes out of us rather than us being absolutely twisted in a bar. Who knew? (Aren’t we all secretly cringing at the absolute state of us all back in 2005/2006 and so on when we took pictures on a digital camera🙈).

This leads nicely to the whole thing of embarrassing our children. Really? I think we embarrassed ourselves hideously when digital cameras and iPhones and any phone with a camera came out. Our generation invented the selfie for christs sake-so with any luck our children will look at that and think-god you embarrassed yourselves way more than the pictures you took of me😂

I look at my postings on Instagrams as memories that one day Paige will be able to look through and go ‘wow, you truly love me’ and with that I mean through everything. Through the tantrums, through the sickness and through the blissful moments. My aim is to chart her growth, her inner beauty and her wonderment of the world around her-from pointing at stars to getting acquainted with the sea and sand. I want to capture everything that I can. Working full-time means that from time to time, I do miss precious ‘firsts’ so to speak, but I try to be around to capture everything I can. I want to have memories that she will eventually be able to look upon and for her to show her children, her friends, partners, family later on down the line.

I love looking back at albums that my parents have stowed away, but now it’s so much easier. I am also terrible at printing out photos and usually upload and empty pictures from my phone every month, so having this ability to go online and remember a picture by looking at the date and remembering why I posted it is special. I’m not asking people to like them. I really couldn’t care less whether they like it or not, just unfollow me or unfriend me.

I’ve unfollowed people for posting the same stuff day in day out, I don’t have to like their posts. I am still friends with them, I’ve just unfollowed them. I’ve also seen people repeatedly post stuff that they have no idea about. At least we’re not posting cryptic messages saying how much someone has annoyed us, but won’t say who or why!?!

I’ve also made some amazing friends online all through the power of our mutual adoration of our children and we’ve all been their to handhold if something isn’t quite right, if they’ve needed a vent or even just needed to see if something is normal. The power of this has been amazing. To know that you’re not alone, as sometimes parenting can be so isolating- as you do tend to lose touch with some friends- because we may not want to always air our frustrations with potty training or how our child is tantrumming because they wanted ‘something nice’ but everything you gave them was not ‘nice’ is a huge relief.

Instagram and Facebook, and for those that I follow is a huge support. It’s an amazing network of parents who want to help each other – don’t get me wrong, there are a few out there who will bash other parents for doing something wrong or will say everything in their lives is perfect – but I choose not to follow them, for my own sanity.

I suppose this whole idea of oversharing works both ways, and no matter which way you look at it, we all move on. We will always lose friends as time goes on. We are all growing up in the world of social media, and if someone wants to unfollow me for posting pictures of my child because they don’t want to see her, that’s fine, it doesn’t bother me. Just like I don’t really have time to go out that much anymore now that I’ve bought a house, and have a child to look after. That’s evolution. We’re all slowly growing up and our priorities change and thus our outlook on life and what’s important to us changes. And is posting pictures of our child on Facebook or Instagram really any different to posting a selfie or a picture of our OOTD or dog any different?

I don’t think so. We post what we care about most, and what makes us smile each day. Surely that’s all that matters.

 

 

Posted in Uncategorized

Busy busy busy! 

The funny thing about parenting is … That you just need to stop! 

I’ve somewhat taken a step back from social media. No more popping pictures up every day. We have been getting out for walks, enjoying the ever so slightly warmer and damp weather! Eating out. Staying up slightly later than usual😬 

We are going on holidays shortly for so much needed sunshine. We are trying Air bnb for the first time as well! And we are all extremely excited. Paige can’t wait to get away and go on a plane. For most of our journeys lately it’s always been by car or ferry. This time we shall be enjoying going on an airplane to the sun!!! ☀️

We will also be trying to potty train when we are away. I’ll let you know when I get back whether it was a downright stupid idea or an amazing one. Right now I’m in the middle. But the villa has everything and it will be the perfect excuse to stay in a house with a pool and everything we could need and not leave! 

It’s Sunday today, so get out and enjoy it with your family! X

Posted in Blogs, Family, Holidays, irish bloggers, life, LifeStyle, parent bloggers, Uncategorized

Staycation Number 2

The funny thing about parenting is … That kids really don’t care where they are, they just want to get away from the norm too!

We are off on our second staycation so far this year. This time however, it’s all planned for us. Dinner reservations-done. Activities-arranged. All that we need to do is get there and enjoy it. 

I’m not going to lie, the ease of not having to pack for a foreign holiday is amazing. No airports, passport control or throngs of people rushing. All we’re doing is hopping in the car for the drive (1 and half hours away) and voila! Paige is excited-she told me under no circumstances are we to order to the room-we are eating out. God I’ve got a diva. Or a child who truly enjoys the high life. 

Keep your eyes peeled on our snapchat-the.rit, Instagram- @toddling_along, and Twitter-@ritawhyte for updates on our trip to Ireland’s Anciest East and Athlone! 

Posted in Blogs, Family, life, LifeStyle, parent bloggers, Toddler, Uncategorized

Pix the Fairy

The funny thing about parenting is…that seeing is not always believing.

I have been waiting until we moved house to move Paige’s fairy in. And although we moved in on Sunday, we had to make sure that Pix’s home was ready for her. We had to make the space special and Paige loved helping me decorate.

Pix made an appearance on Monday night, whilst Paige was fast asleep. She left little glitter footprints all over her room and on her pillow! Paige was so excited. As adults, we sometimes forget that our imaginations are amazing. We don’t need to see everything to believe it and childhood is proof of that. Paige loves the idea of having her fairy share her bedroom with her. She gets so excited to think that this little fairy has been checking in on her when she’s asleep and looking after her. The Fairy Door has made our move that bit easier and allowed Paige to be involved in decorating her room. She has giggled, and looked on in awe with tired eyes as she saw all the glitter. It’s amazing and such a simple idea! Even though Paige is only 2, this little job that we’ve undertaken together has gotten her so excited and she really does understand it.

As parents, it’s our job to encourage our children to let their imaginations run wild and we should enable them to do so.

Pix the fairy will be getting up to plenty of mischief to help us settle in to the new home, so be sure to keep checking in 🙂

Let their imaginations run wild!


To get your own fairy door, check out: http://theirishfairydoorcompany.com/

 

Posted in Bodies, Body Confidence, Clothes, irish bloggers, LifeStyle, parent bloggers, Toddler, Uncategorized

A fashionable step too far

The funny thing about parenting is … that it’s okay to say that it’s not okay.


Tonight, myself, Paige and the hubby went out for a bite to eat and on the way I stopped off at TK Maxx as I always do. Whilst perusing the girls section I came across a t-shirt which I deem inappropriate. It’s just wrong in every sense of the word. Had my child been 16 and not 2, yes I might allow her to wear it, but when she’s 16, she’ll be able to make up her own mind.
To see a topless Kate Moss (covering her boobs) on a t-shirt that is labeled as 2 years is completely wrong. It’s sending a wrong message to toddlers/children. It’s creating a message or image in their minds that this is okay and this is what I need to look like. We won’t look back on Kate’s past as I’m sure she’s learned from it, but I’m in no doubt that she should feature on a toddlers t-shirt in this manner.
Had she been holding a sign, fully clothed saying ‘be nice to everyone’ it might be different. Could you really imagine a 2 year old walking around in this t-shirt?

I’m not judging people who buy it, everyone has their own right to purchase whatever the heck they want. This is just my personal opinion and I think it sets the wrong tone for a child to walk around in something like this so young. How did it even get on to the shop floor when their stock is so floral, pink and flouncy!? I’m all for dressing your child differently, but really?! I’m all for individuality but this would just make the toddler stand out for wrong reasons surely? As I said, I’m not here to judge any parent who might buy this but what image are we creating for unsavoury people out there?!

What would you think if you saw a two year old wearing the above? What would you think if you saw a 7 year old wearing it? How about a 12 year old? It brings to mind so many questions and thoughts. I’ve asked a number of people what they thought-male and female-with and without kids-and every single one said ‘no way is that appropriate for a toddler, let alone a child’.

What are your thoughts? I’ve tweeted, face booked and instagramed my thoughts at TKMaxx, but it would be good to hear yours. I’ve yet to hear anything from TK Maxx, I don’t know if I will, but you would think that fact that a number of people have commented on my post on FB and shared it, they would get back to me. I’m still waiting TK Maxx….

Update: TK Maxx have said ‘they’re looking into it, and will take it seriously’.

We’ve been featured on The Irish Sun:

http://www.thesun.ie/irishsol/homepage/news/7087605/This-is-just-a-step-too-far-Irish-mother-vents-fury-at-naked-Kate-Moss-t-shirt-for-2-year-olds-on-sale-in-TK-Maxx-Dublin-store.html

Posted in Bodies, Body Confidence, Family, irish bloggers, life, LifeStyle, parent bloggers, Uncategorized

The Perfect Body

photo 2
On my due date

 

The funny thing about being a parent is… that for women, our bodies may never be the same after giving birth – again – ever!

The other night I watched ‘The Portland Hospital’ and was so disappointed with the young, 24 year old Fashion Designer and how she said how men may go looking for another woman if their wives bodies didn’t return back to normal -no stretchmarks, fat belly (not her exact words but this is the gist of it) and she was clearly afraid that this might happen to her. For me, the first thing that sprang to mind was ‘Seriously, your husband loves you for who you are, not your body’ especially not after bringing a child into the world. I was disappointed that that is what she believed. I was disappointed that, that actual thought was in her head and she was mulling it over and put it out there for everyone to hear. No woman should think like that! We are all beautiful. End of. If he doesn’t like you for a stretch mark, then so long and you shouldn’t cry over it!

For any mother that’s carried a baby, we all know that the child inside, the little life that is relying on you to survive, has done turns, somersaults, swung out of your ribs, kicked you in the lungs and stomach. That little life made your tummy grow into a protective little (or big in my case) shell. One which you put your hand on daily. One which people looked at so lovingly. One where you could actually see them moving on a daily basis. That original flutter of feeling those first teeny kicks. I could always feel these flutters when she heard the tube pulling into the station as the noise disturbed her! Or when you were sitting at the desk and had to move back as the baby was being slightly squished. Feeling the baby squirm and move around is amazing, but it’s also doing something to your body!

As a mother, your boobs grew and grew and grew. Gone were the nice bras and knickers. Gone were the underwired bras as they hurt too much. In with the maternity bras that were there just as a teeny tiny support, as let’s face it, they were still uncomfortable as hell and our boobs just rested on the bump! I already have naturally big boobs, and so being pregnant, made them grow and grow and grow! I did try and find nice underwear, but come on-sometimes you just want comfort! And that’s allowed. It’s not easy carrying all that extra weight around is it? But, when you’re pregnant, you can wear those skin tight dresses and show off that bump without feeling like you’ve slightly over indulged in some dinner and have a food baby, as you’ve got a real baby in there! A real living baby who you are proud to show off!

There’s been so much in the media focusing on what’s right for a woman’s body to look like after birth, but it really is completely down to the woman herself. Some women bounce back to their pre-pregnancy body pretty sharpish, some don’t, and no one has any right to judge.

If you’ve had a C-Section, you really can’t do much until the scar heals completely. If you’ve had a natural birth, you’re going to be sore. If you had an episiotomy, you’ll be sore down there for a few weeks/months. Stretchmarks take time to fade. The belly takes time to get back to its normal size. Your boobs may never be the same again. But each person is different. In London, I didn’t have the time to get to the gym, the hubby worked long hours and would sometimes leave the house at 6am and not arrive home until 9pm and all the while, I had a baby who fed all the time and was on the go constantly. Then I went back to work-I probably could have gone to the gym on my lunchbreak, but most days I’d have stuff to do and would generally work through lunch or just get out for a walk.

I think, we as society need to change our children’s perception on what is beautiful. I’ve always had stetchmarks. I’ve had them on my legs, butt, hips and boobs. It’s completely down to our skin not being elastic enough and growth spurts. I used to be able to wear those skintight dresses with ease, even after a huge meal (and I still had stretchmarks underneath that no-one saw). I rubbed my bump all the time with oils, skin creams and still got stretchmarks. They are fading, but now I just dress appropriately for how I feel on the day. I have days where I dread trying on clothes as some shops are shrinking the size of their clothes, so in some shops I’ll be 14, in others a 16-18 and if I’m lucky, a 12 in some! I’ve still not bounced back to my pre-baby body. I’m not sure I ever will.

Once you practice a healthy lifestyle, and bring your kids up the right way, who are others to judge you. The media has no right to influence what the perfect woman should look like, they have no right whatsoever judge women on what they look like during pregnancy or after. All that matters is that they’re healthy. Creating this idealistic view will only serve us to influence our offspring negatively.

Whether you’re in the media spotlight or not, it shouldn’t matter because we don’t know the story behind every single pregnancy do we? These women are bringing the future of the world to life, and to do that, their bodies are under immense strain. The childbirth alone puts some amount of pressure on the body. When pregnant, everything inside you shifts. And with this, comes a shift to how your body was before. For me, I have a constant ache in my lower back. It’s one of the side affects of the epidural. I didn’t actually plan on having the epidural but after 20 hours in labour, I needed to be induced in a way as I was not progressing in labour. But it was a rick I had to take as they were planning an emergency C-Section. So my body has never been the same. My boobs have gone up a couple of sizes (and everytime I get them measured, people tell me I had it well?!).

My husband still loves me for me. Stretchmarks, pot-belly and big boobs all included. I believe that when you love someone enough and see them go through that much pain(no matter what type of birth) and trauma to bring a life into the world, they’ll love you forever for being that brave and beautiful.

No one has the right to judge anyone’s body shape or size. But unfortunately we live in a world where people think they do.If anyone takes anything from this post, it’s to think twice before saying anything to people about their weight at all, as you just don’t know what demons they may be battling on the inside. We are all human. We all have feelings. To create a positive body image for you and your family, you need to feel confident and if you feel you need to shed a few pounds, do it the right way, by eating healthily and getting regular exercise -even a quick walk. I get off the train a stop early which means I walk an extra 15 minutes, not much but it’s a start!

Enjoy your kids and don’t let other people’s perception of beauty cloud your judgement.

photo 1
9 Days before my due date