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

Teething Sucks

The funny thing about parenting is…that we (thankfully) forget the pain of teething, but that also means we can’t remember how the little ones feel.

I feel that we have been in a constant world of teething. It feels like it will be never ending.

Paige started teething at around 4-5 weeks old, well that’s when we really notice it. So off we went to the Health Nurse who promptly dismissed our claims in a tone of ‘Sure, what would you know?’ and ‘I’m 100% certain she’s not teething, you’re just being over-dramatic as first time parents’. Sure enough, we definitely were not being overly dramatic as she cut her first tooth at 4 months old, which would put everything into perspective.

Being first time parents had nothing to do with asking her if there was anything she would recommend for such a young baby to help with teething pains. We just wanted to help our little one through the pain that she was obviously in. The chemist on the other hand was a lot more helpful and offered great advice and products to try at her age.

When the first tooth reared it’s little head, the excitement in the house was amazing-‘It’s here’! Role on 2 years and 2 weeks since we found that tooth and we are still going through it. This time however, Paige has the ability to tell us where hurts and if it’s bad.

We’ve literally gone through every single symptom for teething-

  • Teething poo (although we actually had a doctor tell us there’s no such thing and we were bad parents for thinking that teething poo’s exist-but my god they do!)
  • Nappy rash (This used to get so, so bad I actually nearly cried as he bum was so sore)
  • Drooling
  • Chin rashes
  • Chesty cough (this has been a consistent one for our house)
  • Cheek rash
  • Pink cheeks
  • Biting
  • Grinding of gums
  • Puking
  • High fever
  • Blocked nose
  • Crankiness
  • Disrupted sleep
  • Wanting an Actimel at midnight(yeap, all week this week and every single night)

I’m pretty sure that we’ve experienced a few more symptoms but these are what stick out for me!

I’m hoping with all hope that this is in fact the last molar to come through as boy do they suck. They appear to take forever (Paige’s molars have been coming through since last year!).

A big consistent element throughout this whole teething experience has been to trust your own instinct. Doctor’s and nurses can offer advice but when it comes to teething, each and every child has a different reaction to it. Each and every child and parent has their own way of dealing with it. But as parents, we are there to soothe their pain and help them cope by using what we feel is right-whether it be amber bracelets, teething gel, or Sophie the Giraffe and other teething rings/rubbers etc.

Go with your gut is effectively what I’m trying to say, and nobody should put you down. Mother’s instinct is a great thing and something that we all possess. It just clicks in. Father’s have it too 🙂 So lets call it ‘parents instinct’ going forward!

We are all trying to do the same thing, raise our kids to be the best that they can be. We’re in this together.

The funny thing about parenting is…that we’re all not experts, We’re all in the same boat. We all have our own ways of getting through the challenges, the ups and downs and we’re all here for each other.

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
Posted in Family, irish bloggers, life, parent bloggers, Toddler

Toddler turns 2

The funny thing about parenting is that….we will always be busy, but sometimes we just need to switch off from the online world and enjoy each other.

We’ve been doing that a lot lately. House is on track. Toddler is now 2, and officially a toddler….none of this in between age stuff where she’s a wobbler. She’s even moved rooms in nursery.

We’ve been trying to get out and about and enjoy the outdoors, taking walks, going to festivals and making the move to life without the pram in tow. It works for some occasions, but not all.

I’ve been busy with work, and organising a toddler birthday that most other things have taken a back seat in our lives. We want to see Paige grow up, we want to encourage her to use her vocabulary, although, at the minute, it’s quite difficult as the terrible two’s are well and truly under way. The tantrums, the slapping, the biting. All of it. And it’s difficult when you live with family. As everyone has an opinion. Everyone thinks it’s funny but then it’s gets to a point when it’s not funny anymore. And then they chime in with ‘that’s bold’ or ‘say something to her’. I can completely and whole-heartedly understand why the child is getting frustrated. Sometimes all a toddler wants to do is relax, like so many of us. She has spent the whole day at nursery-longer than most people’s working day, from 7:30am until after 5pm. She’s all played out. Just let her be. I don’t like to talk to people after a long day, and neither do a lot of adults. So why should a 2 year old who can’t put everything she wants to say into one big long sentence.

I also had a quick read of an opening line on an article about ‘sharing’ and how can children be expected to share when another child wants a toy/book that said child is playing with. We as adults, don’t hand over our phones when someone says can I look at ‘blah blah blah’. And why shouldn’t the child who’s playing with said toy/book/spoon just hand something over because another child wants it. Aren’t we giving in to that child a little too easily and shouldn’t we be teaching them to wait patiently(as well as teaching our children to share, once they’ve finished playing with said object and let their little imaginations run wild). This was something that actually made me think, as I’m so fed up with people telling my child to share when she’s in the middle of playing with something. Why should she? Why should she just give up her toy because someone else wants it? As a mother, I am also there to protect her. To tell her it’s okay, finish playing with the toy as there are a dozen other things for the other kids to play with. Don’t get me wrong, she tries to take other kids toys too, and I swiftly step in and tell her gently that isn’t how it’s done and I hand her something else. (I’m not saying she’s an angel because she isn’t!).

I know once we move out, into our own space again, things will be easier! We will be able to parent a little more structured in a way. The toddler will love her new bedroom. She will love having the freedom to have her own play area. She will love sharing her new room and toys with whoever chooses to visit. She will love all of this, as she knows that it’s all hers. Mummy and daddy will love their own space too. Our own kitchen. Bathroom. Garden. And yes, we will sharing (if people want to visit, but they can bring whatever they want as we’ll be flat broke-so champers, wine, food are all welcome! Oh and the necessities, like chairs and stuff too!)

Posted in Family, irish bloggers, life, parent bloggers, Toddler

Weekend

The funny thing about parenting is…. we all love the weekends! That is of course, if you have the weekend off as not all parents do. My hubby has to work the odd weekend-always has! But we all love our days off – even if the kids are so set in a routine that sometimes they drive us crazy. (I’m not going to lie!)

Paige has a habit of not eating at the weekend unless it’s just yogurts, chocolate, crisps and juice. She likes to graze. She likes to pick at things. If kids are around, she’ll wolf down her food.

But the weekend for us is family time. We get out and about, and yes, most of that time is spent shopping, going for a coffee and maybe going for the odd dinner out. The odd dinner out, used to be every weekend we’d eat out in London in the fabulous restaurants that were all 5 minutes from the house. Since we moved home, we’ve been saving so cut down on the non-necessities.

This weekend however, mummy and daddy are going away for the night on Sunday. It will be the second time we’ve left her alone. We went to Monart Spa in Wexford when she was 5 months old for the night as it was where we got engaged, many years previously. Thinking about it now, it was easier to leave her with the grandparents back then, compared to now. Obviously nearing two means she is used to her surroundings, she’s used to having us with her and putting her to sleep. She is used to sleeping in our bed – her cot-bed has become redundant.

Now it’s time for some mummy and daddy time. I am entering my final year in my twenties. We have also just had an offer accepted on a house. We are both pretty shattered. We need a night away to relax and to enjoy each others company and as selfish as that seems, sometimes parents need to have that alone time and it’s fine. I do feel bad that we’ll be leaving early on Sunday, but she’ll be spending quality time with her grandparents who are just returning from holiday.

It’s time for us to put on our fancy clothes that we can’t wear around little grubby hands and to enjoy the surroundings of a hotel. Originally we were toying with the idea of taking Paige away for a couple of nights, but sometimes, as adults, you just need a break. You need that full night’s sleep. You need to eat a meal without it ending up all over you. And that’s OKAY!

I think I was and still am quite apprehensive about leaving her, as when she wakes in the night, she cries for mummy and daddy. Even if my parents went in to her, it was mummy and daddy she wanted. So that’s part of the reason we booked a hotel in Dublin. It won’t take us long to get to her if all hell breaks lose.

Looking back on that first night away as a couple and leaving Paige for the first time, it was easier than it is now. Yes, she was still small, but she was still small enough to fall asleep with the aid of a bottle. That all stopped as soon as she hit 12 months. But we just have to suck it up. My parents reared 3 kids and we’re all still around. They’ll be well able to handle my ‘angel’ (good thing they really know what she’s like!).

So this weekend, we as parents shall be enjoying family time for one day, and then getting dressed up, like little miss Paige above, and we shall be taking one night off duty. It won’t scar her for life. It will make her miss us even more! As she keeps telling us ‘I’m not a baby’.

And I shall celebrate turning 29 with a good night’s sleep, a Jacuzzi bath as well as a sauna in the room. All with a glass of bubbly in hand! And bonus, I’ve a day off work on Monday.

So here’s to all you hard-working parents, who work, don’t work – whatever it may be! As being a parent is a full-time, hard, and loving job!

Happy Weekend everyone!

Can you tell I’m excited?

P.S. Crown is from the amazing Fable Heart (Claire is amazing at what she does-so I might have to steal missy’s crown for Monday!) and the amazing dress is from Dunnes Stores (last year’s collection however and it only cost €14!).

Posted in Family, Toddler

Nights out – sorry WHAT?!

The funny thing about parenting is…

That since we moved home from London, we’ve actually had less nights out than over in the big smoke! Believe it or not, even with grandparents around, I think we’ve gone out 3 times together alone in about 6 months.

In London, we went out at least once a month, if not twice(sometimes 3).

I blame not having restaurants on our doorstep at the minute and Paige being at that difficult stage where she only wants ‘daddy’. Even if we leave the room for 2 minutes, the screaming starts, so I just don’t have the heart to leave her at the minute. There’s also the issue of routine, and at the minute, our routine is essential otherwise we have a cranky, demon inspired toddler who is not afraid to bite, slap and run amok. Sometimes we are the only ones who can put her to sleep. And then we’re wayyyy too tired to head out – especially after the mammoth screaming and jumping on the bed sessions which just generally result in frustrated parents screaming at each other.

BUT, parents do need some time out together alone. They need some time to sit down and actually enjoy a meal and have a private conversation, without the little toddler screaming beside them.

It still baffles me that we get out less over here, considering we have the grandparents, and aunts and uncles (in London, we only had her uncle). I miss eating nice food out(all-you-can-eat sushi, pizza from a proper Italian, and the chicken from another Italian!), I miss popping for a quick, quiet glass of wine. I miss that even if all we did was talk about the little one and how we should’ve brought her with us.

We have both agreed that we do need to get out for dinner soon, together, alone. But as of yet, we have no concrete plans. I’ll let you know if we do. But don’t count on it.

Posted in Family

Sometimes toddlers just need to remove themselves from the situation

The funny thing about parenting is …..

Sometimes toddlers just need to give themselves a time-out. This actually happened in our house last night and #ToddlerPaige would not be consoled.

Yes I was awful for taking the whole big bag of Haribo from her and prepare a smaller bag for her mind you!

But out she went to the stairs and sat there crying her little heart out and telling us to leave.

We eventually got her to calm down but….the terrible two’s have started. And no one tells you they can start when they’re still only 1.

We may have had a giggle at her tantrum and once she calmed down, she loved running through the house like a lunatic. We generally distract her and give her something else to play with or something to snack on-so the step was a new one for us!image

Enjoy the tantrums everyone. Let their personalities shine through! Make sure you have a large cold glass of whatever you enjoy to help you through🍻🍼🍷

Posted in Family

The Funny Thing About Parenting is….

That everyone has their own style of parenting.

Everyone of us does our own thing with our children.

Some of us have routines, others don’t.

Some breastfeed, others don’t.

Some parents allow their children chocolate, others don’t.

Some parents get sleep, others don’t.

We all do things differently, and a lot of the time, we do them the exact same way. We are all working towards one common goal of raising our children to be the best possible versions of themselves. We are here to guide them.

Now I’ll get on with sharing some of our daily life with you all, including talking about a child who put herself on the naughty step (even though we don’t use a naughty step!).