A blog by Dr Lin Day



Stay Cool Top Tips

Here are some tips to help you, and your baby or toddler, stay cool when temperatures soar:

 

Indoors

 

·      Stay indoors at the hottest time of the day in a well-ventilated room.

·      Close the blinds to prevent your home becoming a mini greenhouse.

·      A fan won’t make the room cooler, but moving air over your skin can make you feel more comfortable (check it has a finger guard).  Better still; put a bowl of ice in front of it.

·      Place wet towels and bottles of frozen water around the room to help reduce air temperature.

·      Take a cool bath or shower with your toddler (not recommended for babies) or wet your hair.

·      Place a cool, damp flannel on your pulse points.

·      Wrap a tea towel soaked in cold water around your feet.

·      Turn on the oven and bathroom extractor fans to help remove warm or steamy air from the room.

·      Avoid using the oven - it will heat up the house.

·      Cool down with a cold water bottle on your tummy.

·      Wear as little clothing as possible and go barefoot.

·      Sit or play on the floor where the air is cooler.

·      Reduce bedtime clothing and bedding to a minimum and keep the bedroom well ventilated.

·      Light dust your skin with corn flour to absorb sweat and make you feel more comfortable.

·      Slightly dampen your bed sheets to help you cool you down.

 

You and your child will sleep more comfortably when the room is between 16°C (61°F) and 18°C (65 °F).

 

Out and about

 

If you do need to venture out in hot weather, try scheduling activities earlier or later in the day when the temperature is cooler.

 

It also helps if you:

 

·      Wear light-coloured, loose-fitting, breathable clothing made from natural fibres such as cotton or silk. Cover your child’s arms and legs. Avoid synthetic fibres, which increase sweating.

·      Wear a wide-brimmed hat to provide shade and keep your head cool.

·      Keep to shady places such as a shopping mall or library.

·      Stay in the shade especially between 11 am and 3 pm, when UV radiation is at its strongest.

·      A sun tent can provide shade, but make sure that it doesn’t get too hot inside.

·      Mist yourself or your child with cold water or spray from a garden hose.

·      Sit in a cold, shaded paddling pool or refresh your feet in a bowl of cold water. Make sure your child is closely supervised at all times.

·      Attach a sunshade to the pushchair to protect your child from the sun. Check that there are no metal parts on the pushchair that can get hot and cause burns.

·      A lamb’s wool fleece is an ideal way to keep your child cool in the pushchair when you’re out and about (although you may get a few strange glances). The fleece absorbs moisture and helps to disperse heat.

·      When travelling, place a portable blackout blind or sunscreen in the side window to reduce temperature and glare, and to help shield your child’s skin and eyes from the sun.

·      Consider travelling at night when the temperature is cooler.

 

Stay hydrated

 

·      Drink more water than usual so that you never become thirsty. A glass of water every 30 minutes or so will prevent dehydration.

·      Avoid salty foods, which retain water and increase blood pressure.

·      Drink cool, non-alcoholic beverages (mums and dads!).

·      Eat ice cubes and keep trays stocked up in the freezer.

·      Avoid drinks with large amounts of caffeine such as tea, coffee, chocolate, and energy drinks.

·      Keep your metabolism steady by eating small, regular meals. Large portions increase metabolism and generate more body heat.

 

Stay safe

 

Seek immediate medical attention if you or your child experience one or more of the following symptoms during the heatwave:

 

·      Strong, rapid pulse.

·      Extreme weakness or fatigue

·      Throbbing headache.

·      Dizziness.

·      Nausea.

·      Confusion.

·      Muscle cramps.

·      Fast and shallow breathing.

 

Excessive heat may cause problems if you become dehydrated. Find a cool area where you can rehydrate and rest.

 

By Dr Lin Day (www.babysensory.com

GUEST POST- Trying to Stop Wishing Time Away

Being a first-time mum is all about learning lessons – within just a few hours of my baby being born, I had built up my knowledge of parenthood far more than reading all those books throughout my pregnancy. But one of the biggest lessons I had to learn early on, and one that I still have to remind myself of, is to stop wishing time away. 

And let me tell you, despite comments of “don’t they grow so quickly” and “she’ll be five before you know it”, I found it very difficult to do. 


Yearning for a routine

There’s no sugarcoating it, those first few weeks of motherhood are really hard. I didn’t know what I was doing, whether I should be feeding by the clock or on demand, whether I should be waking her up at night to feed or waiting for her to wake up naturally, to swaddle or not to swaddle, to rock or use the dummy. 

There are so many things you have to decide from the get go that you feel will shape the parent you will become and the habits your children will form, I found it very overwhelming at times. 

As *Moo always had to be walked, driven or bounced to sleep (and stay asleep!), it’s hardly surprising I yearned for the days when I could put her down in her cot for a nap and leave her chatting until she dozed off. 

And while I had no routine of feeding, sleeping, showering or even leaving the house during those first few weeks, I envied those mums who had their toddlers in a professionally set schedule. 

At the start, we lived in chaos, and despite everyone cooing over my beautiful baby daughter and delighting at how tiny she was, I really looked forward to the day her hands weren’t so small and her button nose not so teeny, but at least our lives were in order again.  


Waiting for the elusive ’12 weeks’

I guess I started wishing time would speed up when other mothers began to tell me it’ll all get better at 12 weeks. It felt like there would be a magical turnaround at three months when looking after Moo – who wouldn’t settle at night, even after endless feeding, who had reflux so bad she screamed when you laid her down, and who cluster feed for hours before bedtime – would suddenly be a walk in the park. 

When Moo was five weeks old, I remember clearly being told to hang in there, as I was halfway through. I never found what was meant to happen at ten weeks and I was too sleep-deprived to ask, but every day it felt like we were just counting down to a better, easier, calmer experience.

And every time someone told me to “not wish time away”, I was torn with the guilt that I wasn’t enjoying this time as much as I should’ve been and that I’d miss it when she was a toddler throwing a tantrum in the middle of the supermarket. (FYI, I do). 


A miracle turning point?

The sad thing is ten weeks came and went, then so did 12 and while, admittedly, things did get a bit easier, they weren’t exactly a doddle. 

And they might have just got calmer because of my sheer determination to set up the routine I coveted so much and help Moo learn how to self settle so naps and evenings were a bit easier (for me). 

It is definitely true that she couldn’t have learnt those things when she was a dot and she eventually developed a fantastic schedule and great habits that make my life easier now, but I think it’s only afterwards you realise how precious that time at the beginning really is. 


Take each day as it comes

Babies have the rest of their lives to grow up, learn how to nap and get too big to sleep cradled in your arm, and they will soon be crawling away or answering back to you before you know it. 

So, maybe I should’ve accepted the advice of other mums who came before me and enjoyed the special time when she was a newborn more, instead of feeling my eyes sting with tears of anger and guilt at their mere suggestion that I was silly to want to skip the difficult first few weeks. 

Don’t get me wrong, motherhood became far more enjoyable when the long colic nights, reflux and endless screaming came to an end. But when I see my little girl, once someone you could rest in the crook of your arm and stare lovingly in her eyes, now growing faster than you can imagine and jumping on the bed with a vocabulary that gets bigger every day, I realise how fleeting that newborn time was and we’ll never have it back. 


So, do I regret wishing that time away? You bet. 

But, do I bite my tongue to stop telling other new mums to make the most of this precious time? I certainly try.  

Instead, I’d tell them to take each day as it comes. Tomorrow will be a little bit easier, but today is just as special. 


Natasha Al-Atassi



* Our affectionate nickname for our beautiful baby girl. 


GUEST POST- Gearing up for a magical first birthday!

Gearing up for a magical first birthday

 

During the first few weeks of our baby’s life, it felt like time suddenly stopped still. The 12-week milestone everyone kept raving about when things apparently get easier felt like an eternity away, and every challenge seemed to last forever.

 

But then something astonishing happened – our newborn baby turned one.

 

Waking up to a one-year-old

 

My daughter’s first birthday was probably one of the only times we were awake before her, waiting eagerly for her to get up. I don’t know why we were so excited to see her little face, it would’ve been just the same as the day before, and the day before that. But this was the first time we’d see her as a one-year-old.

 

Before, Moo* had been “x-days old”, then “x-weeks”, finally “x-months”. But now, quite simply, she was “one”. And it suddenly sounded so grown up.

 

It’s a mother’s prerogative to go overboard

 

As a first-time mum, I found it hard to work out how to celebrate our little cherub’s first birthday. I’d never done this before, so gauging what to spend on a present, what to do for a party and who to invite were all mysteries to me.

 

After confident declarations of “we won’t do much – she won’t even understand”, we did the exact opposite. Moo ended up having not one, but three, birthday parties, three birthday cakes, and a whole host of gifts.

 

We had a birthday party with her friends (aka our friends’ children), one with her NCT baby pals, and one with family. Of course, each party needed a separate cake, decorations and activities, and there were presents galore.

 

I still (perhaps naively) claim that this was a unique birthday – her first one! Therefore, it’s only natural to go a bit overboard and get excited, right? But I can’t help but feel there will be many more birthdays to come that are met with the same enthusiasm as her first.

 

Reminiscing about last year

 

Of course, Moo’s first birthday wasn’t just special because it was such an important milestone in her life. It was also significant because it brought me back to the events of last year – her birth.

 

I found it so poignant to recall the days leading up to labour, knowing our lives would change forever but not really understanding how. And then as soon as she was born, it was like we’d never been without her.

 

She’ll probably tell me to “shutup mum” when she’s older and I’m trying to tell her the beautiful story of her birth every year on her birthday. But I still find it moving – from the speedy labour and being rushed in a wheelchair to the delivery suite, to being told she’s a girl by my husband and holding her in my arms for the first time. 

 

All of it was difficult, painful but amazing. And that’s probably one of the main reasons us mums all go a bit mad over our babies’ first birthdays. Because it reminds us of such a phenomenal point in our lives, and all the amazing changes that have occurred since.

 

Seeing the years fly by

 

In the end, our baby girl becoming one was a huge turning point for us. Not so much for Moo, who had already been walking and chatting away for a couple of months.

 

However, for my husband and I, this was the first time we could see the years fly by in front of us. Instead of feeling as though time had paused and the weeks were passing ever so slowly, like they did in the beginning, it suddenly dawned on us we’d be preparing for her second birthday before we knew it.

 

And now as I spend my weekends learning how to bake a Peppa Pig cake and trying to throw a special (albeit much smaller) celebration for Moo as she turns two, I realise we were totally on the money.

 

 


GUEST POST - Baby, it’s cold outside!

January has a lot to answer for – the post-Christmas blues, Dry January madness, wobbly bellies that can no longer be excused for ‘mum tums’ thanks to all those Quality Streets, and people going on a diet everywhere you turn. There’s also something else that’s very miserable about January. The weather.

 

While I’d normally avoid the bitter winds and nasty rain by staying indoors, it’s a different story when you’ve got a baby. Try as you might not to leave the house, it is totally unavoidable… with the freezing weather bringing even more challenges when it comes to motherhood. Thanks, btw.

 

- Facing the frost

 

I remember in the hazy first few months of Moo’s* life I spent all the time walking around. I must’ve trampled miles every day, with my worn-out legs going for hours in an attempt to get her to nap.

 

To be fair, it was probably really good for me – exercise and fresh air and all that. But boy am I glad a lot of time spent outside was when the frost was beginning to thaw and spring was coming to life.

 

Having said that, Moo was a February baby so, like every winter mum knows, there were many days braving the freezing chills to take her for a walk so she’d sleep. In fact, you’d recognise other mums on their own little ambles around the area, wrapped head to toe in thermals and a snood so far up their face, you can only see their eyes.

 

Sometimes the struggle to get out of the house at the crack of dawn when it was icy outside was enough to convince you to stay in instead – but then when those tired screams start and there’s no way they’re going to nap in their moses basket / swing / bouncer / sling / lying on your arm like a damn tiger, that’s when you deeply regret your decision to choose warmth over walking.

 

- Wrapping up

 

There are so many guidelines when it comes to wrapping your baby that when we first took Moo out, we were at a complete loss. Presented with vests (both short and long-sleeved), sleepsuits, mittens, cardigans, snowsuits, hats and blankets, we didn’t know if we should just pile them all on or if this would cause her to overheat, which is really dangerous for a newborn.

 

As someone who always feels the cold, I favoured the layer-on approach, whereas my husband – who can happily wear shorts in October – was the opposite. Eventually, we worked out what was right for our little angel – and as long as she slept snugly in her carrycot, we were all happy.

 

- Getting ready to go out

 

Getting ready to leave the house has always been a challenge, although a constantly changing one. At the beginning, there were the “let’s get out of the house to stop her crying even though we haven’t showered or eaten yet” conversations, then it involved trying to squeeze her into a snowsuit when she just wanted to roll around, and now it is a game of chasing my almost two-year-old around the house while bargaining with her to put on her shoes, coat, gloves and hat.

 

As a summer girl, I hate all the paraphernalia that comes with dressing for winter and can’t wait till I can shove all the hats, coats, gloves, scarfs and wellies away for the year, but it’s even worse when you’ve got a baby.

 

Not only do you need to add extra time when leaving the house, you have to constantly undress when you arrive anywhere. This is particularly the case when they’re little and you have a relentless fear of not wanting them to overheat, while also not wishing to wake your soundly sleeping baby up.

 

For me, by the time I’ve wrestled on outerwear for the fourth time that day, it’s time to call it quits and have a cup of tea inside instead – Pa, if only!

 

- Toddler fun

 

The only thing more challenging than wrapping up a baby for the winter – with the long frosty walks and endless concerns about temperature control – is dealing with a toddler in the freezing cold weather.

 

I’ve already mentioned the difficulties of getting ready, but at this stage, you can forget about layering up – she takes it all off when we get out of the house anyway. I assume she takes after her dad when it comes to not feeling the cold.

 

What’s more, thanks to Peppa Pig, my little girl is a big fan of splashing in muddle puddles, and while I encourage her active and adventurous nature, it doesn’t make it any easier when she then has to spend the day in wet tights.

 

Only the other day, she got covered head to toe in mud at the park and, even though I should know better by now, I forgot to bring her splash suit or any replacement clothes for her to change into. Doh.

 

So whether they’re a newborn or an energetic toddler, winter is no easy time for parents. Roll on summer, I say. At least then you only have to remember sun hats, sunglasses, shades, parasols, suncream, aftersun, water, more water….

 

*Moo is a affectionate nickname of our daughter.


GUEST POST - Baby’s first Christmas – Tinsel, teething and tears!

Baby’s first Christmas – Tinsel, teething and tears! 

 

I’m a huge fan of Christmas. You know, one of those people who are itching to bake Christmas goodies and tuck into a tin of Roses once the BBQ has been put away. So it’s safe to say I couldn’t have been more excited about our baby girl’s first Crimbo 

I even had all the ‘My First Christmas’ signs ready, and bought her very own Christmas jumper before she was born!  

But what no-one told me was babies don’t stop being challenging just because it’s Christmas Day – something we found out the hard way.   


Awake at 5am – for the wrong reasons 

The Christmas before last I was heavily pregnant, and I couldn’t enjoy an afternoon glass of sherry, a mulled wine, or a cheeky Amaretto with my cheese – I couldn’t even enjoy cheese! – so I was really looking forward to being able to eat and drink what I wanted at Moo’s* first Christmas.  

And while I certainly tucked into pate, soft cheeses, and boozy puddings, unfortunately I couldn’t appreciate late nights or too many drinks because my little angel was still keeping me awake at all hours. 

At 11 months old, Moo had been sleeping through for a while, but we were struck down with the most trying of afflictions – teething! 

That’s right, with sky-high temperatures, incessant screaming and endless syringes of Calpol, we were in a full-blown teething nightmare.  

So, I kissed goodbye to late nights watching Christmas films and evenings out with friends, as I knew I would be up with my poor baby whose gums were red raw. And comforting her with a mulled wine hangover didn’t appeal, strangely enough 


Days in = cosy or cramped? 

Her teething only escalated on Christmas Eve, which is usually my favourite day of the year. I love the anticipation of the next day, and even if you don’t do anything, it’s great to simply see family and friends and spend the day baking, cooking and wrapping. Right? 

Well, since I’ve had a baby, I’ve quickly learnt staying in the house is far harder than leaving it – especially with a poorly baby. Even if I wanted to have fun preparing for the next day, it’s near impossible to do anything with a child permanently attached to your hip. Try wrapping while bopping them on your knee, desperately keeping the scissors out of their way. Or chopping vegetables as they’re pulling on your tights. Or chatting to loved ones with a mince pie and a cup of tea when they’re forever reaching for the scalding drinks.  

Of course, there is always the respite of naptimes. But the teething nightmare put paid to Moo’s naps, which meant we were all knackered by the time Santa was meant to be making his rounds. In fact, as she spent all Christmas Eve crying, any festive-themed activity we had planned simply fell by the wayside.  


What Christmas traditions? 

This included introducing her to our new family traditions – from leaving out mince pies for Santa to giving her a gift to open on Christmas Eve and tracking the sleigh around the world – which I had spent months looking forward to.  

But what with the teething drama and the fact you still have the normal routine to stick to, we totally forgot to do anything of it. 

It was only once she was tucked up in her cot sleeping soundly after a day of upset and pain that we realised we hadn’t given her the present or left out treats for Rudolph and his pals 

Despite how much I had looked forward to Christmas Eve, it was just another day for Moo, complete with dinner times, milk feeds, naps, bath and bed. She had no idea what the fuss was about and didn’t have a clue what the next day was to bring.  


All better for Christmas Day! 

And neither did we, for this year we got everything we wanted for Christmas. Two beautiful pearly white teeth. And a happy, cheery baby.  

In spite of the stress of the previous day, Moo was back to her old self once her teeth had broken through, and loved all the excitement of Christmas Day – the unwrapping, the toys, the crazy hats and the delicious foods. She had no idea what was going on, but enjoyed every minute of it. 

I had built up Moo’s first Christmas so much in my head it was hard to realise it may take years for it to be the all-singing, all-dancing occasion I longed for. We hadn’t gone to a carol concert, watched a Christmas movie or baked mince pies together. She didn’t appreciate the advent calendar I stitched when I was pregnant, seeing Santa Claus reduced her to tears, and it took days to open her presents, as it was all so overwhelming.  

But it was still hands down the best Christmas ever – even with all the tears, pain and sleepless nights. We may not have done all the lovely festive things we had planned, but the best part is knowing we have all that to come.  

And I, for one, can’t wait for December 25th to roll around so we can create some fab memories of her second Christmas together 

*Moo is the affectionate name for our baby daughter.

GUEST POST - From massage to music – how we became baby group pros! By guest blogger Natasha Al-Atassi

As soon as I clocked off work for my maternity leave, I began to look forward to the groups I could attend with my soon-to-be-born baby. I loved the idea of leisurely carrying him/her in their car seat to and from baby massage, baby yoga, fitness and music lessons, smiling in the knowledge that their mind was expanding as they absorbed all these fantastic interactive classes.

But I didn’t quite appreciate that sometimes – especially at the beginning – it wasn’t as easy as it looked.

In fact, only a few days after becoming a mum, I realised baby groups may be a long way off, as even just leaving the house seemed tantamount to climbing the Himalayas!

 

Our first group – Finally getting out and about

Admittedly, Moo* was only three weeks old when I took her to her first baby group. In hindsight, I can see she was still only a little dot, but at the time I felt I had endured 21 days of being relatively housebound and I was itching for people to see and things to do.

I know what you’re thinking though, what can a baby really learn at three weeks old? Well, our first group together was baby massage, a free class run by our local Sure Start Centre. So really it was an opportunity for me to pick up skills, not my little angel who spent most of the course feeding or crying if I took her clothes off.

At the beginning, I was really conscious that I barely did much massaging during our sessions as Moo was always tucked under my top, but I came to realise that none of that mattered. I really came to see new faces, talk to people, complain about colic, and have a structure to my day.

It didn’t matter that Moo sometimes stayed asleep in her car seat, or started scrambling off as soon as she could roll over. What was important was that I was building strong friendships already, seeing other mothers during the difficult early days.

That’s one of the greatest rewards of baby groups – being able to support and gain support from other mums when you need it.

That and learning how to help your baby bring up wind, of course!

 

Next steps – Finding the right class

Once I became confident going to classes alone, I decided to try a few different ones – outdoor fitness sessions (admittedly more for me), sling dancing, music, swimming, baby gymnastics. You name it, we tried it!

But it took a while before we settled on the right ones for us. I soon discovered that it’s not just about whether you and your child like the class, it’s also about which ones fit into your routine.

So many were at the wrong time, too far away so she’d be sleeping on the way back (which was a good or bad thing depending on how many naps she was having), too expensive, or meant you had to wrestle with the car seat too many times in one day – something that often clinched the deal.

Also, I didn’t quite appreciate in my dreamy carefree days of maternity leave that our needs would change over the months. So if a class was at the right time in June, come August when Moo had dropped a nap and was weaning, it’d fall at the worst possible point during the day.

When this happened, I just learned to roll with it and enjoy the groups that did fit in with us. It wasn’t until my baby girl was about six/seven months old and was on a steady two naps and three meals a day that we had a good routine and could settle into classes for long stretches of time.

Although this meant we constantly had to change classes, we also got to make lots of friends, try many new things and find groups we both really loved!

 

Getting out of your comfort zone and making friends

The main reason for new mothers to come to groups is also one of the biggest things to turn them off – having to socialise.

I relished the opportunity to go out, see new faces, apply a bit of make-up (when possible!), and sometimes wipe away tears and put my ‘brave face’ on just to make me feel a bit stronger.

But I also had those days when I didn’t want to talk to strangers or pretend I’d had a stress-free morning, and I was only there because it was easier to have someone else sing to Moo for an hour than me having to do it… again.

Despite the fact it can be difficult to put your exhaustion to one side and cheerfully talk to people you don’t know, it’s well worth it. You soon realise you’re in the same boat – which for first-time mums is such a relief – and even laughing about some of the more stressful moments can make you feel better.

 

Now a toddler group pro

All in all, I achieved what I intended to with our baby groups. We tried a lot, disliked a few and settled on a handful we love, so much so that we still go to them now Moo is a fully-fledged toddler!

But best of all, I’ve made some fabulous friends who don’t care if I’ve got traces of dry shampoo in my dark brown hair, sick on my shoulder, or a toddler who’s trying my patience, simply because they’ve been there since the very beginning of my baby’s life.

And that’s something you won’t be able to say about a lot of people.

 


From pregnancy to parenting - why weddings are never the same again

I love weddings – from the excitement waiting for the bride to arrive right through to the last tune at the end of the night, sung like an anthem by the tipsy guests encircling the happy couple. But it all changed once I got pregnant.

While I still look forward to the next nuptial when I can raise my glass to happy newlyweds and wipe a tear after the father-of-the-bride’s speech, I know deep down that weddings won’t be the same for a long, long time.


No booze rules

I didn’t have any weddings to go to while I was expecting *Moo, which was a good thing really as being pregnant at a wedding really doesn’t sound like my cup of tea.

Firstly, where’s the fun in swapping a glass of fizz for an orange juice, or toasting the couple with a plain old glass of water? 

And when everyone else is crooning to Unchained Melody or rocking their air guitars to Don’t Stop Believing, I’m sure to the sober pregnant lady in the corner, they (*we*) just look plain silly. I never want to see this from her perspective, as looking silly (particularly when piling on costumes in a photobooth) is exactly what I love about weddings.

To be honest, even after the baby’s born, if you’re breastfeeding, you still can’t drink much!

 

Pumping away

This brings me on to just one of the struggles of attending a wedding when you’ve got a young baby – the constant pumping game. Now, I don’t want to sound bitter as I know I was very fortunate in being able to breastfeed when many other mums haven’t been able to.

However, for all those ladies who have suffered with painful, leaking, engorged boobs when they’ve gone just a few hours without feeding their baby, I know exactly how you feel.

When we left Moo at six months old for a wedding one weekend, I expressed 108 ounces of milk – that’s over three litres!

This also meant I had to pump the equivalent amount of breast milk in the months leading up to the wedding, so my mother had enough to give her in our absence. Talk about feeling like a cow…

And for anyone who hasn’t tried, pumping isn’t actually the easiest thing to do. It can take over an hour to empty both breasts, which meant I missed out on so much of the wedding, including the arrival of the bride and groom, the beginning of the first dance and, really disappointingly, all the delicious canapés.

What’s more, my poor, loving husband had to deliver filled breast milk bags to reception after every pump so they could store it in their fridge. Not the glamorous days of weddings that we remember!

 

Breastfeeding at a wedding

The alternative is to bring your baby with you – which I also have experience of. The one thing that was really difficult was finding somewhere to feed Moo every three hours. I was quite happy to breastfeed under my tried and trusted bib, but you still need somewhere to sit and sprawl your belongings out.

When everyone’s chatting away standing on the lawn in their heels sipping Bellinis, this isn’t really the best environment for feeding a child, especially one that keeps trying to whip the bib away from her face to see what’s going on.

Instead, the only place I could find that was easiest for both of us to feed was the Ladies, and even then there were no seats, so I just walked around the room carrying her as she happily suckled away.

The stress didn’t end there though as, unfortunately, I forgot to put my breast pads in, so one side of my pretty dress got completely soaked in milk while she enjoyed her afternoon snack. Nice.


Looking after a toddler

As babies get older, at least you don’t have to worry about feeding. However, that’s when you have to look after a toddler who’s running around, smushing food into their beautiful cream satin dress, and has the potential to throw a tantrum AT ANY MINUTE!

Even when you come prepared for all eventualities, it’s never easy to enjoy yourself when your mind is focused on your little one.

And at the last wedding we went to, I could be seen (and photographed) crawling on the dining room floor chasing my 18-month-old who thought it would be hilarious to go AWOL during the speeches.

Incidentally, she ended up playing hide and seek behind the top table throughout the father-of-the-bride’s emotional dialogue, which she obviously thought was hysterical. I’m somewhat used to the playful tendencies of a toddler and the unglamorous acts of motherhood now, but who knows what the other guests made of her mid-afternoon game?

It was only when we dropped her off at home with a babysitter and headed back for the evening do that we finally got to relax, and enjoy a stress-free glass of fizz.

So whether you’re chasing your little ones on your hands and knees, trying to get humus out of your hair, wishing you had had time to do your make-up properly, or hiding the powdery-white stain of milk from your dress, that’s when you’ll realise weddings aren’t what they used to be.

 

My advice? Give yourself a childfree night and get a babysitter! And try to forget about the impending 6am rise…

 

*Moo is an affectionate nickname for our beautiful little daughter. Obviousl

From one mum to another

‘I’m so happy to welcome Natasha as our first guest blogger. Her posts ‘From one mum to another’ will become a regular feature as she tracks her journey through life with little…well I’m about to say too much already!

Welcome Natasha and I am really looking forward to hearing what life is like as a mum in digital world of 2015!’