Top Tips for Raising Children with Dogs

We all know that dogs and children can have an amazing bond. Certainly Hollywood loves to depict beautiful relationships between dogs and kids. But we all need to remember that no matter how ‘domesticated’ a dog is they can still react to situations. This is why it is so important to teach children to respect dogs. No dog should be placed in a position where it feels like it needs to protect itself. Equally so no family wants to run the risk of raising children around a snappy unpredictable dog. So what can you do to ensure everyone gets along?

lightstargod / Pixabay

Top Tips for Protecting Dogs and Children

Don’t leave dogs and young children unattended
No matter how much you trust your dog they shouldn’t be left with small children. Small children are unpredictable and they love to grab. How would you feel if you had a small person hanging off of your tail? Exactly it’s going to hurt and you are going to react. A dog is no different. Don’t put them in this position.

Give dogs space to eat in peace.
I know like they leave you alone when you have a biscuit in hand! But dogs can be protective over food. Teach your children to leave them to eat their tea in peace. Its great if they can help out with feeding, but when that bowl goes down it’s time to step back.

Discourage small children from feeding dogs by hand
This is tough when you are weaning. Let’s face it dogs are a fantastic clean up crew. What you don’t want is for them to always associate the kids with food. Feeding dogs from the table is a pretty bad habit anyway. Don’t let them beg and try to ensure they are not stealing food from small hands.

Photo Credit: Gabriel Cardoso Foto via Compfight cc
Photo Credit: Gabriel Cardoso Foto via Compfight cc

Keep them out of rough play.
My big boy Pie loves a bit of wrestling. He gets very over-excited and jumps all over me and the furniture. Great fun for all. The dogs get very excited and start jumping about too. They are playfully snappy and will often claw at us. If things get too loud or frantic they can get quite protective. A dog doesn’t know the difference between play and a real threat. Try not to put them in a position where they think someone needs their protection.

Remember it is their home too
It’s very easy to allow the kids to rule the roost. But you invited this dog into your home and now it’s his home too. Make sure they have somewhere quiet to go. Especially if you have other children around. They need a safe secure space where they can get away from it all. Don’t allow the kids to chase them or aggravate them. Encouraging games of fetch or playing with the dog supervised is great for building trust between kids and dogs. Read the signs though, when the dogs had enough give them some space.

ElvisClooth / Pixabay

Dogs can bring so much to a family. They can be great companions for all of you. If you can encourage children to be respectful of dogs it will make for a fantastic family dynamic. Long summer walks and winter snuggles with a dog can be amongst the best experiences for children. Just a few sensible steps will hopefully mean a long and happy relationship between you and your pet.

How can you tell if your parenting is good enough?

I was laughing with my husband tonight whilst discussing the daily parenting fails. It’s a regular occurrence. We buoy each other up after another less than perfect parenting day. For example today my eldest has gone to bed with a black eye (bouncy castle related injury) and a grazed elbow (he engaged legs before brain…) But both he and Pud’s went to bed smiling. For me as a parent that’s what counts.

The media is packed with unrealistic view of parenting. You know the ones. Beautiful pristine nurseries (always in bloody white, go figure!) Fantastic photos of families enjoying days out (no sign of whinging or ice cream covered clothes, shoes, ears…) Mum’s and Dads dressed in designer gear, no bags under their eyes or worry lines.  Not so the worlds portrayed by parent bloggers who can, in the search of humour, paint parenting in a light so unfavourable that it’s a surprise people pro-create at all. These honest and witty accounts provide a more realistic view of the highs and lows of parenthood. Although nothing can prepare you for the truth of raising a small human into a reasonable balanced adult. But how do you know if you are doing a good job?

johnhain / Pixabay

When professionals talk about ‘good enough parenting’ they mean you have met a child’s basic needs. Physically and emotionally they are cared for and safe. They aren’t insisting you take them to the zoo, chase them round soft play or shower them with presents. Children need to be loved and for you to be emotionally available to them. They need to be fed and watered (bit like a plant really) they need to be excercised, stimulated and put to bed. A child needs to be kept safe, clean and warm.

Clearly everyone has good and bad parenting days. Those times when everything comes together and great memories are made. Your confidence soars. Give yourself a mini fist bump, you have this parenting shizzle down. Next morning though, the clock has reset. What amazing parenting can you pull out of the bag today? Nope you got nothing have you? Because you can’t be A1 parent 24/7. There are too many variables that cannot be controlled. You’re tired, the kids are tired, the weathers bad and the mother of bad parenting days; you just don’t feel like parenting today! What you really want is to sit on the sofa and watch total shit on TV. No interruptions, no questions, just you and that remote. Don’t worry it doesn’t mean you are a crap parent, it just shows that sometimes we all want to get off the world for a while.

Wokandapix / Pixabay

We get so carried away with making everything perfect all the time. Trying to reach that elusive parenting dream, thrust upon us by advertising. We forget that it’s not the big gestures. It’s that cuddle, that story, that time spent together. Think back to your childhood memories. Was the first thing you thought about a material thing or was it time you spent with your parents?

Of course the days out are fun. As are those times when you provide children with new experiences. But what children want more than anything else is to feel loved and safe. To know that they can come to you, that you will be there for them. Not too busy to listen or too stressed to care. You know your parenting is good enough when that little person kisses you goodnight, snuggles down into his bed and whispers I love you, you are my best friend.

Juggling – Guest Post By Agatha & Mary

Agatha & Mary Juggling

So Mary, I bumped into your granddaughter Emily in Wimbledon the other day. She looked well, her little boy is a bonny lad, sitting up in his pram and chucking toys at me. What a darling!

Oh he is quite adorable isn’t he? Looks just like his father don’t you think? Shame about the hairline of course – he’ll be bald by 20, but c’est la vie! Yes lovely young Emily has caused quite a stir with the in-laws as she’s is thinking about going back to work. Did you know?

No, dear, she didn’t mention it. But little Hubert is only six months old. Does she want to go back so soon?

I think it’s more a matter of needs must, Agatha. But she did used to enjoy her job so I think a part of her is looking forward to working again and no doubt regaining some of her identity.

Of course in our day, Mary, we had maids and nannies to look after the wee ones when we needed. And do you remember that fabulous job I had when my offspring were little?

Wasn’t it stuffing teddy bears for the WI, dear?

I only did that once as you well know Mary, don’t you remember that dreadful reaction to the stuffing that I had? Everytime I see calamine lotion I shudder! No, no, if you recall I was Head of Jam. It was a much tougher job than one would imagine and of course it was terribly important – I was in charge of ensuring quality, consistency of colour and texture and making sure no one had bought it in Marks and Spencer and switched the labels. Of course, there was a great deal of tasting involved and one had to be incredibly diplomatic of course.

Yes, I do remember the time when you got into a heated discussion with Mrs Porpington-Smythe about boiling temperatures. It was wooden spoons at dawn, wasn’t it?

Ooh you do make it sound quite dramatic Mary dear! But getting back to Emily and her job, how did she decide it was the right time to go back?

Well, she and her husband Jasper had long discussions, dear. But I think it was her decision, when she felt “ready” as they say nowadays. And I have been telling her that she will be absolutely fabulous back in her job and not to worry that she has forgotten anything.

Oh I do remember that “nappy brain” feeling, when you can’t seem to string a sentence together, let alone type a coherent proposal.

Well, Agatha, in your case I think that lack of facility was more to do with too much brandy, after all it seemed to last even when the children had left home!

Oh Mary dear how you do like to exaggerate, it was just a little pick me up as you well know. Unlike you I can’t eat too much cake or chocolate because of my thighs!

Point taken Agatha! But Emily has become so terrifically organised since little Hubert came along – it will help her when she goes back to work. After all, most new mums find they achieve spectacular things they never thought possible when baby comes along.

Like waking regularly in the night and making a bottle, or changing a nappy, without screaming you mean?

Oh absolutely dear; just like juggling when to wash your hair, or go to the toilet. Sometimes I managed that more than once a week – it was all quite thrilling!

  funnyhair (1)

But Mary dear, in our day we didn’t have any rights so we just had to get on with things, but what about nowadays? What happens if Emily needs to work, what is it called, flexible hours?

Well Agatha, she found this amazing spiders web link thing which gave her lots of good information.

Legal situation: https://www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk/en/articles/know-your-rights-when-you-go-back-to-work-after-having-a-baby

Mary, dear, I think it’s called the Interweb, not Spiders Web – but never mind. This all looks perfectly topping to me.

Oh Agatha yes it is, and there are some lovely people out there ready to help you if you need some advice on all sorts of things to do with going back to work after having a baby.

Women Like Us are a good place to start: http://www.womenlikeus.org.uk/

In our day, of course, you just listened to your husband and did what you were told.

Quite, Mary, except you never listened to the Count, did you?

Never understood a word he said, dear. Always spoke Italian and I never could get the hang of it. Still, that’s probably the secret of our successful marriage! Another slice of jammy sponge?

Oh please, and this must be your own jam recipe no doubt! I must say as one gets older one does rely more on the support of one’s underwear to cope with the fact that everything is either spreading or heading south.

Speak for yourself dear, the Count commented how ‘fit’ I think the term is, I was looking the only the other day.

Well dear, I find that hard to imagine.

Yes, come to think of it he was talking about that night the four of us invented a new dance. I’m convinced the lovely Michael Jackson took inspiration from us for his Thriller song.

originalthrillerdance (2)  

But you know what Agatha dear – I think these young women today are absolutely marvellous.

Not only do they embrace motherhood and all the picalilly nappies that go with it, but they somehow manage to go to work on minimal sleep, or juggle babies and running the home. And look at the rise of the mummy blogger, how wonderful they are. But we know that the old idea of “having it all” is not possible. Women don’t need to be juggling a high powered city career with six kids – to feel successful. Just getting through the day and giving your children a cuddle and story at bedtime is a real achievement.

Oh Mary dear how right you are! We don’t need Super Mums to make us feel like we are constantly failing. And sometimes success comes from doing what you love. Just look at that Nadiya from The Great British Bake Off, she’s just getting on with motherhood and doing all the stuff that holds a family together as well as fitting in time to bake a cake for the Queen and write a cookery book.

I quite agree dear. I feel we should raise a glass to our fellow mothers, working or at home, who are holding everything together and still finding the energy and commitment to make their lives and that of their families better.

Oh admirable Mary dear, I’ll ring for Snetter. A bottle of the Bolly ’48 would be perfect with your cake.

Scrummy!

http://www.jamieoliver.com/recipes/recipe/jammy-coconut-sponge/


Did you love this post? It was written by two new bloggers who I absolutely love! (Hence why I am showcasing it!) You can find Agatha and Mary on their own blog here. You can also find them on Twitter. This quirky duo cover all types of topics on their blog with an old fashioned twist. We think they are a pretty jolly pair. Make sure you go over and say Hi, don’t forget to tell them that Pudding sent you 🙂

Reviewing Hug-in-a-Box: Promoting Mental Health

If you haven’t heard of Hug-in-a-Box then you are missing out. These wonderful boxes were launched by Mind Matters earlier this year. The principle idea behind them is that you can send them to a friend or loved one to give them a theoretical hug so that they know you are there for them.

Mind Matters have designed their box to help provide ‘perfect moments’. Those priceless moments when we all feel present and content. With this in mind they have included items such as dark chocolate which has the ability to boost the brains natural opiates. As well as chamomile tea which is extremely effective at helping with anxiety and insomnia.

The evidence behind the idea is that giving or receiving a hug can create significant physical and mental benefits. Including reducing blood pressure and reducing stress levels. Hugs also increase the level of the love hormone, oxytocin. Although a Hug-in-a-Box is only a metaphorical hug; research suggests that receiving something that shows love and attention also reaps these benefits. Sounds great right?

Well we certainly thought so! Now having been fighting my own PND for the last few months I thought this was an ideal product for me. However, poor Mr Pud has been on endless night shifts this month. So I very kindly offered the box to him. I mean if anyone deserves a hug its Mr Pud. He was pretty excited when I handed it to him.

Hug-in-a-Box

I have to say when we opened the box together I did slightly regret my decision! The box was beautifully packaged. All the items were individually wrapped in pink tissue paper, making it all the more exciting to unwrap each one.

Hug-in-a-Box

We couldn’t believe how many things were in the box! I kept diving in and handing him another one. Honestly he was like a kid at Christmas.

Hug-in-a-Box

Once we had unwrapped all the bits, he immediately scuttled off to run himself a bath to test out the bath salts. (Don’t worry I didn’t get any pictures of that) He then requested a cup of chamomile tea, his chocolate bar and his little mindfulness book to enjoy in said bath! After leaving me for an hour with the children, he emerged from the bathroom in a cloud of lavender scent and looking like a new man.

Mr Pud certainly enjoyed his Hug in a Box. It definitely helped him unwind and de-stress after a hard week. I personally think it helped him to cope with the mood crash he often has after a long stretch of night shifts.

Hug-in-a-Box appreciate that this little gesture won’t solve everyone’s’ problems. Hopefully it will provide a chance to recharge and assist with a persons coping abilities. It may become the start of a recovery for some people and every Hug-in-a-Box contains a ‘Get Support Now’ card to signpost people to a range of services.

Hug-in-a-Box

We were very impressed with the Hug-in-a-Box. If you have someone out there who could do with just a little pick me up then you can order them a Hug-in-a-Box here. Every box can include a special message from you, to ad that personal touch.

Want to know more about Hug-in-a-Box or Mind Matters you can find them on Twitter

Diary of an imperfect mum

The Clever Bees Club – Giveaway and Review

A group of my blogging pals were talking about this lovely company called The Clever Bees Club a couple of weeks ago and how they were looking for a few people to review their lovely product. So I went over for a little nosey….

The Clever Bees Club was started by Mark Smith. After taking his daughters to a Toy Shop and witnessing his daughters agonsising over what to spend their hard earned pocket money and the massive choice available. Mark got to thinking about how great a subscription box for kids would be and thus The Clever Bees Club was born!

What Mark has designed is a monthly subscription box aimed at 3 -7 year olds. The box is designed to be exciting and educational and is filled with high quality items and great activities based around a theme. The box aims to help with children’s development whilst being fun. You can read more about The Clever Bees Club on their website.

Well too cut a long story short, I was impressed! So I gave them a little message and whilst we were on holiday a lovely box was delivered to Pie.

Our Review of The Clever Bees Club Subscription Box

Now Pie may only be four but he knows when a parcel has his name on it, it’s the A he recognises! So he was pretty excited to find a large box waiting for him. I did manage to hold him off until the day after we got back, just so that we could all get the most out of it. The weather in Brimingham was disgusting so it was great to have something new to open and explore.

image1 (2)

 

Most fittingly the theme for the Clever Bee’s Box was water! We were all really impressed with the amount of stuff that was packed into the box. Pie kept digging through the shredded paper and finding more and more things.


He was particularly excited about the water balloons (managed to persuade him out of using those in the living room). The bubbles as always were a hit and the super soaker got great use in the bath (unfortunately straight in Pudding’s face). Luckily we had the soft flannel to dry her off a bit!!

The Clever Bees Club

The book, stickers and colouring crayons kept us all going for a wet and cold morning. The prized goggles are awaiting their first trip to the swimming pool. Most surprisingly Pie was really enthusiastic about the reward chart. We have been introducing a few little chores recently so this week we are rewarding for setting the table for tea! He is hoping to earn enough stars for a green light sabre…

The Clever Bees Club

We have yet to try the included recipes but they look yummy. I personally love the idea of the experiment using the ice cube tray. Being a bit of a science geek I am looking forward to getting Pie involved and taking about the outcomes. He is a curious little chap so reckon this will be right up his street. We just need the sun to shine to make the most out of it!

For the number of items in the box and the quality of the toys and activities I think the monthly subscription of £19.95 is fair. We were really impressed with the contents of the box, the items were all high quality. Everything is either useful or will be played with. All items were age appropriate to Pie and even Pudding can benefit from a few bits and pieces. Its a big thumbs up from us!

Enter our Giveaway!

Love the idea of The Clever Bees Club? Well we have been lucky enough to offer a free 3 month subscription to one of our readers! That’s 3 months of fun activities and new toys worth just under £60. Enter our competition below and we will announce our winner on the 30th June. Good Luck! (This competition is only open to UK residents)
a Rafflecopter giveaway

ThePrizeFinder – See more at: http://www.theprizefinder.com/content/3-months-free-subscription-clever-bees-club#sthash.oAE5ooMQ.dpuf

We did receive The Clever Bees box free of charge in order to conduct the review. All the opinions are our own.

Puddle Duck Pudding

Ahoy there! Well as you may have guessed by my Instagram we have been in The Lakes all week. Lots of new things for a Pudding to get into. As I am the adventurous type I got into a boat!

First there was the amazing cottage Mum and Dad booked. Let me tell you the bath in that place was ace. I got to practice my swimming and splashing technique. Got Mum soaked on the first night. (She looked hot and sweaty after all that driving!) I still had to share a room with Pie but luckily his snoring wasn’t too bad.


I slept pretty well that first night. Travelling always takes it out of me. Dad wanted to go over to Coniston, so into the car we went. Mum thinks she is some kind of rally car driver! Over the hills round the twisting bends. I felt a bit green to be frank. But I still managed a 45 minute snooze! It was worth the journey though because Coniston was beautiful.


Love it when we can’t use the buggy. Mum got the new carrier out and stuck me in, facing forward. Hello world!! Ah the sun on my face… Wait. No way not that hat. Noooooo! Damn, I hate hats 😡 I swallowed my pride, because the view was too good to miss. Daddy and Pie were dashing about, skimming stones and being boys.
We had a wander and then stopped for a bite at the Bluebird Cafe. That sausage bap looked ace. But when Mum licked ketchup off my head I was less than amused… There was talk of a boat while everyone else ate… (And I got covered in ketchup).

Mum attempted to make up for the ketchup thing by offering me a bottle. I refused obvs. She then laid me down and proceeded to strip me of all dignity by changing me in the boot of the car. I mean seriously a swan could have seen my ladybird! Luckily no one was there but this better not be a holiday habit.
Then I discovered what a boat was. I have to say I thought Mum and Dad were insane. The life jacket was the final straw. I looked like a star, but it did have a comfy bit behind my head.



As we climbed in the boat, I sat with Dad. Apparently the rally driver was also a sea captain….
The excitement was all too much for me. I nodded off before we had gone very far.


When I woke briefly I was sat with Mum whilst Dad and Pie drove the boat. That was even more worrying so I closed my eyes out of fear.



According to the others the boat hire was great. I will have to take their word for it. I only got to see the inside of my eyelids…

Marvellous Mondays badge by Hello Archie

Top Tips for Avoiding Family Holiday Hell!

For those of you who read our blog on a regular basis you will know we are currently enjoying a holiday in The Lakes! But after our holiday faux pas at Bluestone, what have we done to ensure The Lakes won’t be a wash out?

Top Tips for A Happy Holiday:

  • Book good accommodation! I originally booked this trip 5 days after Pudding was born and in a total hormone stupor. When we checked it last week it became apparent that I had in fact booked one room with the idea that Mr Pud and I would sleep on a sofa bed! (Honestly a sofa bed? What WAS I THINKING??) We changed our mind last-minute and booked a great cottage instead. Room to move, two bedrooms and the essential kitchen with washing machine (we are weaning here people…)
    Holiday Cottage
    idunlop / Pixabay
  • Keep packing stress to a minimum. You don’t need the kitchen sink or 18 outfits (washing machine remember?) Pack what you need, be ruthless! Remember when it comes to repacking you will have to track every item down and squeeze it back into the car. With the added addition of buckets, spades, inflatable crocodiles and the worlds most uncomfortable shoes that you brought on a whim! (Throw them away? NEVER)
  • Self catering? My preferred option, I know it’s a bit of a kick in the crotch to cook every night but least you know it’s going to be eaten (mostly). If you are going self catering, just get Tescos to deliver! Seriously, saves you the pain of packing it into the car or worse still driving round and round to find a supermarket after 6 hours of travelling.
  • Plan the route before you go! Nothing worse than not knowing where you are going and then losing mobile signal as soon as you are off the motorway. Download the route planner so it’s available. But don’t be militant about a leaving time or how many stops you will make. Go with the flow! Sometimes rushing kids out the house is just going to make matters worse. Relax have a coffee. (sorry no wine yet you need your wits about you!) If the traffic is shite then stop for a while. Sitting in a tail-back stressing and needing a wee is no good for any of you.
    Holiday Traffic
    0532-2008 / Pixabay
  • Unpack the cases when you get the other end (not straight away have a brew first) This will make for a more relaxed feel. Who likes living out of a suitcase? Put stuff away, make it feel like home.
  • Don’t try to cram thousands of things into one day. It’s a holiday remember? Keep the pace relaxed! What does it matter if you don’t get out the house before 10? Kids feed off your stress, just let it go. Try and plan an activity for each day – get the kids to help choose if they are old enough. Remember toddlers don’t like walking too far and teenagers don’t like having no phone signal for more than an hour (15 mins).
  • Relax some of those rules about food. It’s ok if little Timmy wants to have an ice cream morning and afternoon, it’s a holiday! Stopping for cake and a drink is a novelty, so enjoy it. Also because holidays are busy little people get hungry or should I say hangry! Feed them. Often.
    Greyerbaby / Pixabay
  • Occasional late nights on holiday are exciting. A week of late nights is just perpetuating a natural disaster. Try and keep the sleep habits as close to home as possible. Parents and kids with no sleep is a recipe for meltdown. If you are out and about and little ones usually have a nap, maybe plan a short trip in the car at that point or encourage them to snuggle in the buggy. Tired angry children make holidays miserable, read the signs and take action. Quickly.
  • Don’t panic if you forgot to pack something! Remember this is England, not Outer Mongolia. Most things are available locally and if not get on Amazon Prime and order it for the next day! Nothing is out of reach and you know what if you forget it, it probably wasn’t that important!
  • Make time for each other. Once those rascals are in bed grab a bottle of something (anything) crack open some maltesers and a pack of cards. Reconnect with each other, phones off, laptops away and no TV. Talk and laugh about the day and the inevitable disasters. Reminisce or think about places you would like to come back too just the two of you. It’s your holiday too, enjoy each other!


    Takmeomeo
    / Pixabay

Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday

Mummy Tag

I have been enjoying reading all the Mummy Tag posts going round recently and it has been great to get to know all the other Mum Bloggers out there, so I was really chuffed when I was nominated by the lovely Squirmy Popple to have a go!

So here it is my Mummy Tag:

Are you a Stay at Home Mum or a Working Mum?

Currently a stay at home Mum while on maternity leave but back to work next month! Pudding was not exactly planned so financially I have to go back to work now she is 6 months. Lucky its only 2 days a week!

Would you have it any other way?

Hmmm I never thought I wanted to be SAHM because I love my job – but these days I think I would like to be home with the kids. In an ideal world I would be a stay at home blogger!

Do you co-sleep?

Nope – Never! Our bed is ours and under no circumstances do either children get in it before 6.30 am. Even when the other half is on nights. Everyone sleeps better in their own bed and we need to have something that is ours. Both kids come in in the morning and we all have a drink in bed and maybe a brioche or something!

What is your one must-have item for your baby?

My baby carrier – I love it and Pudding loves it. We have had several different ones. I used to be a huge Ergo fan but Pudding loves to face out so we have recently invested in a Stokke My Carrier which is totally fab. Now she can be nosy and still well supported. (plus its a gorgeous purple colour)

How many kids do you plan on having?

My husband would have said one – but as we are already at two… I think I would like a third but then again we don’t have a very big house and we would need a bigger car etc. Still never say never hey?

Date nights? How often do you have them?

Ooh we love a date night – although normally that means a good meal at home and some wine with a rented Sky movie! We do get out occasionally but we don’t have family that close for baby sitting. I think the most important thing is to spend time connecting with each other. Now summer is here we will spend more time in the garden with a cocktail and a pack of cards, hopefully unplugged from phones and TV.

Meditations / Pixabay
Your child’s favourite show?

Well Pudding doesn’t mind – but she is a total TV addict already. She spent the first few weeks of her life sat on the sofa with me listening to The West Wing (she still finds the theme tune quite soothing) Her big brother Pie spends most of his time watching and re-enacting Harry Potter! Although he has now moved on to Star Wars as well.

Name one thing you bought before you had the baby and never ended up using.

Well we were a bit more savvy with Pudding but with Pie I was a typical first time Mum and thought we should have everything stocked by Mothercare. I think the most useless item was probably a top and tail bowl – I don’t think we ever used that…

Your child’s favourite food?

Parsnips and Bananas – Pudding Loves them! I have to say she ain’t fussy really but the parsnips really get her excited! Pie on the other hand loves curry, its his latest thing and we ended up having to have it 4 times last week. I used to love curry but even I am getting a bit fed up with it now!

How many cars does your family have?

Just the one – a large bright yellow 500L. Its mine and I love it! My Hubby doesn’t drive (too many years living in London) so he doesn’t get a say in the car, the colour or the music!

Weight gain, before pregnancy, during, after and now?

I am one of those really annoying people who was a size 8 before pregnancy a size 10 during and back to a size 8 afterwards. I know I would hate me too…

Dream holiday with your kids?

Oh I know its been said loads but it has to be Florida – Pie would love to do Harry Potter world and the Disney Parks. Pudding doesn’t care, as long she is with us. Although I would like to see her in a princess dress with Belle!

Harry Potter Castle
randomwinner / Pixabay
Dream holiday without your kids?

Ah there are so many places we would love to go together – but I think for me it would have be traveling coast to coast across America in an old style American Muscle Car. Stopping at diners and motel, listening to classic rock!

How has your life changed since having kids?

In every possible way! I always used to be out and now I rarely leave home. I always used to love expensive clothes and since Pie was born I have stepped in All Saints once. We used to love a few glasses of wine and a good rant at Question Time and now we barely manage to keep our eyes open until 10pm. Would I change it? Not at all!

Finish the sentence “It makes my heart melt when…”

Pudding and Pie sit together on the couch and he puts his arm round her and says ‘I am here my Pudding’ and she looks up at him with a huge smile.

Mummy Tag

Where do you shop for your kids?

Oh all over but mainly Next and H&M – occasionally I splash out  in Jojo Maman Bebe or Joules. I would love to dress them in Mini Boden and The Little White Company but they grow so fast and Pie is such a dirt magnet it wouldn’t be worth spending all that money!

Favourite make-up and skincare products?

Well I love my Birchbox that comes every month – its my little treat to myself! But if I am off to buy my own it has to be Laura Mercier (that flawless skin facial wash is AMAZING) and Bobby Brown for their BB cream. I am not a huge makeup wearer but I like nice moisturisers and cleansers.

Huggies or Pampers?

Always Pampers – they just seem to fit better and feel softer.

Have you always wanted kids?

No! It was always in the back of my mind but I didn’t yearn for them in fact until just before we fell pregnant with Pie I had no burning desire. But now I can’t imagine life without them (just had to duck a wand attack from Pie whilst I wrote that, maybe I could imagine….)

Best part of being a mum?

Tucking Pie in at night and having him sit up give me a huge kiss and a cuddle whilst whispering ‘I love you Mummy’ and then picking Pudding out of her cot in the morning and seeing her beaming smile when I say hello!

Have you taken part in the Mummy Tag yet? If not why not have a go, its great fun and its nice to get know each other better!

Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday

Party Pudding

Aloha Pudding pals!

I know it’s been a few weeks, Mum has been far to busy enjoying herself to take the time to write out my inner monologue. I have been telling her about all my concerns and general life questions but she has been turning the other cheek…

You probably heard it was Mother Dearests’ birthday last week – oh woohoo I hear you cry and I share your underwhelming enthusiasm or I would if it hadn’t been for the fact that I got to sample something amazing this week, I believe my grandmother called it chocolate… Read on Pudding fans I shall tell you more!

 Mum managed to drag her Birthday over a few days, according to Dad she always does this. I was disgusted to learn that on her Birthday she gets a lie in and then breakfast in bed, (let’s gloss over the fact that I get breakfast in her bed every morning) she also got cards and flowers. I notice nobody sent me a present just for being cute, it appears I am forgotten…



Then at the weekend we went over to the grandparents house in Shrewsbury. I love it there because it’s cuddles on tap and that naughty Mutti feeds me stuff when Mum isn’t looking. Pie loves it too and the Sausages think it’s ace to terrorise the local birds, cats and children.

Saturday we went to this cafe in town called The Birds Nest, Mum always raves about there sandwiches, so it was her choice to go there. I have to say it was pretty cool, amazing lights to look at, loads of people to smile at and a DJ too. The food did look great (Mum assures me her sandwich was epic) I tried to get a piece of cake off the cake stand but was busted at the last second.

 We then went back and got organised for a BBQ, I didn’t see much of this but apparently there was an intense boules competition after several glasses of wine, in which Daddy was crowned the champion. Not sure how this happened, sporting prowess is not one of the terms I would have used to describe my Dad…

Sunday was chilled kind of a day, I lazed about, getting cuddles at every opportunity and refusing to partake in any kind of tummy time or rolling activity. I am teething don’t you know? This required constant 1:1 attention and a lot of bonjela.

 But shut the door, I found a better teething cure! When Mum wasn’t looking I, me, yes me, I was given a load of chocolate icing to lick off Mutti’s finger… OMG why has this not been on the weaning radar before?? I was quite giddy with excitement and with all my squealing I drew Mum’s attention, that’s when she saw the chocolatey face…

Apparently me and Mutti are naughty, but I am starting to see why Pie loves going to see the grandparents so much! I am contemplating moving in, they don’t even think about offering me broccoli!

Love Pudding X

Cuddle Fairy

Wanted: Granny! – Mum is the Word

Mum & PuddingI love it when Mum comes to stay, even for a couple of days, it lifts the whole mood in the house. I am calm and relaxed, I don’t feel the pressure of trying to get the kids dressed, fed, and washed, because she is beside me. We laugh and joke, and it makes all those daily chores feel less, well chore like. Because she is my Mum she just seems to inherently know what needs to be done or how something needs to be done and she just cracks on with it, no fuss. I enjoy cooking for her while she is here, because after all these years its nice to be able to give something back, I don’t want her to feel like she comes here and is a slave for me! But having her here certainly makes my life a bit easier and just her jolly attitude helps to lift me up and carry me along, when she goes I feel so flat. Tonights’ bath time was lovely with the kids, we sang and splashed, everyone was happy, but I felt a slight ache because I had had to say goodbye to my Mum a few hours earlier and she won’t be back for a few weeks again now.

Mum & Kids

I never considered what it would be like to bring up my children so far from my own Mum, but had I known when we had the made the decision to move across the country, what I know now I think I don’t know if I would do it again. I love my house, my husband and my life in Birmingham but I miss my family who live around 3 hours away (if we get a good run!) I am super lucky to have such supportive and lovely in laws, but even they live over an hour away. I wish we had some one closer, someone who I could pop in to with the kids for a coffee or who I could even leave the kids with just for an hour whilst I run an errand or do the food shop. I miss being able to just drop in some where, almost unannounced and have a pick me up pep talk when being a Mum gets tough. They are all the things my Mum would provide if she wasn’t so far away. I don’t want her to do endless hours of childcare or even to sit in our house whilst my other half and I enjoy a child free meal (although I wouldn’t say no to that occasionally!)

What I really need is an adoptive-grandparent, one who lives near to me, who maybe doesn’t have grandchildren of their own. Maybe they have family that live far away and they also crave the kind of companionship that is so lacking for me! Do you think you can put an advert into the local papers? You know a bit like the lonely hearts column, how would it read?

Wanted Stamp
OpenClipartVectors / Pixabay
Wanted Granny: Young(ish) Mum looking for a friendly adoptive Granny. Not too old, must love cats, biscuits and tea. Needs to enjoy the company of small children. Would prefer if they had a dog and a garden. Quite happy to take them out to places for lunch and coffee every week, in return for a listening ear and a few kind words. If you are interested in this post and live in the West Midlands please contact me…

 

Sounds mad doesn’t it? Obviously you can’t just adopt a Granny, but if we could, I definitely would. We could do with an adoptive Grandad too for that matter, one who could mow the lawn, or do a few odd jobs, nothing fancy just things that most people would ask their Dad to do for them!  Sometimes I need that cup of tea with a side order of wisdom that can only come from the older generation…

thumbnailsize

Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday