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Is It Ever Ok To Tell Off Someone Else’s Child?

After a series of events and discussions I have had with other mums this week. It got me thinking. Is it ok to tell off someone else’s child?

I was at our weekly toddler group the other day where I was confronted with a situation that made me feel conflicted. My son was playing with one of his play mates whom he knows fairly well. I was sitting nearby when all of a sudden Gabriel started screaming. This was not a usual scream. I rushed over to see what had happened and found my child sobbing and holding his arm. He had been bitten.

I didn’t know what to do, I had never been confronted with this situation before. I’d dealt with the usual pushing and shoving from other kids ( and from Gabriel). But biting? My usual reaction would be to fob it off and comfort Gabriel until he had calmed down. However this was different. It was physical and I didn’t want Gabriel thinking that biting was an acceptable way to express himself. How do you teach your child that a certain behaviour is wrong without telling the other kid off? Or coming across as passive aggressive to the other parent?

There are times when I feel like a hypocrite when discipling Gabriel. He is often scolded for pushing or snatching from another child. However when another kid does it to him he often looks at me as if to say ‘ Why aren’t you scolding them too’? He is too young to understand the explanation.

So after a long conversation with my fellow mums. I have collected some tips on what is the most acceptable practises when faced with a playground dilemma.

Speak to the parent first

Most parents agree that they prefer you to come and speak to them first before speaking to their child. To be completely honest I get that. It is a natural reaction to stand up for your little ones. That said it should be within reason. There is often times when another kid will snatch a toy from Gabriel or visa versa. And I find myself asking the child if we can share the toys and not snatch. In the same way I would not be bothered at all if another parent said the same to Gabriel.

Know the circumstances

This is a big one. I think too many parents are quick to judge without knowing the circumstances. A prime example is from a friend of mine. Her child looks a lot older than he actually is. While playing at a playgroup amongst some older children he struggled with sharing and had a few temper tantrums. His behaviour was quickly judged by other parents. They had assumed he was a lot older than he was. Had the have known his age they would have realised that his behaviour was very normal for his actual age. Same goes for children who may have certain disabilities that cannot be seen, such as Autism or Aspergers. Know the facts before you jump in and find yourself in a difficult situation.

Remove your child from the situation

The easiest thing to do when a playground battle starts is to remove your child from the situation and explain or discipline them in private. This is my go to move and I find it effective and respectful to other parents and their children.

In the case of the biting incident, my only concern was that I didn’t want Gabriel to start biting other children because he was bitten. In no way was i angry or judgemental. I knew that the other child had learnt this behaviour because he had been bitten himself on numerous occasions. It is a learning process and I try to remember that kids will be kids. It is inevitable that there will be power struggles and upsets as they try to figure out their emotions and stance in this big world. Remember that we are all parents in the same boat.

Looking for more posts?  Check out my post on what it is really like living with a 2 year old

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Advice To My First Time Parent Self

By Posted on 7 4 m read

Looking back at the first time we brought Gabriel home, I can’t help but giggle at my former self. Both my husband and I really had no idea of what was ahead of us. We would panic at the mere sight of…well anything. We studied the way he breathed, how much he ate and what noises he made. God forbade that anyone use anything other than water and pure cotton on his bum for the next 20 years. And we were obsessed with the temperature in his room. Though these were all part of the new parent experience, I would like to give my former first time parent the heads up with some much needed advice.

 

 

PLAN PLAN AND PLAN

Did I mention plan? As obvious as it sounds it really isn’t. I thought I was quite organised but I never anticipated the amount of time simple things took. Like how impossible it felt to actually be able to leave the house on time. How feeding and nappy changes seemed to never end. Or how difficult it was to actually eat, let alone prepare dinner.

I had made and prepared meals in advance but those meals went by faster than i could blink. I released that I didn’t have anything quick and easy to snack on. And not to mention I went through my entire wardrobe in a matter of a few days! Don’t underestimate how many times this little one will spill his bodily fluids on you. So my tips?

  • Buy loads of cheap comfortable clothes for you to wear. This was the first time I bought from Primark and I was so grateful.
  • Make heaps and I mean heaps of meals in advance. It is a pain now but it will be a life saver in the long run. And don’t forget to stock up on snacks!!
  • Start getting ready 2 hours before you are scheduled to be anywhere. With babies that feed every 1-2 hours, by the time you have started packing all of the baby stuff and are finally ready to head off. The baby will be hungry again and will possibly need another nappy change.

 

 

EMBARRASING MOMENTS

This is a hard one for me as I feel I was really dealt the short end of the stick. Be prepared to lose your dignity as soon as you become a mum, heck as soon as that bun starts cooking. I was sick for the first 6 months of my pregnant and I tell you it was not a pretty sight. Vomiting and crying down the high street is not how I envisioned pregnancy. However do not fear as it does not end after the baby is born. Never in my life could I have imagined the trauma that would happen to me down below. And by down below, I mean all of down belowwww.

It was bad enough that my vagina was unrecognisable and that I winced every time I sat down. It was even worse that i had to figure out the hard way that Kegels are not just the muscles for your vagina but for everything!!!!! Imagine my horror as I head to the bathroom to find that I had semi shat myself without even knowing it! To top it off it was not easy explaining to my husband why I had just thrown my panties in the bin. So advice?? Work them damn Kegels!!!!

 

INTIMACY LIKE YOU HAVE NEVER HAD BEFORE

It is true, you will change and will do just about anything for your baby but some of the things I have had to do are things I never ever thought I would do in my life. Be prepared for the first time your little one catches a cold. Because not only is it worrying and a pain in the butt for sleeping. You also need to help your little one to…erm…unblock his nose. It is fairly simple if you are fully equipped with Vicks Baby Rub and Warm Mist.

However if like me you were not and the only way to help your little one was to suck it out of his nose, then chances are you are just as traumatised by that experience as I am. So avoid the trauma and make a little baby first aid kit with lots of Baby Paracetamol and a tonne of Vicks Baby Rub!

 

ENJOY THE MOMENT

Having said all of this, the biggest and most important advice I would give to myself is to enjoy the moment. Enjoy him as a newborn, a baby and a toddler. Don’t be in haste for him to learn and carry on to the next step. There were times we were so excited for him to progress that we forgot to cherish the step he was in. He would roll, we would say crawl. He would crawl, we would say walk. Until we realised that our little baby had grown up way too fast and we were not prepared for it. It is not a cliché. Cherish them. Hold them. Soak it all in

Check out my post on how we got our baby to love bedtime

Disclaimer : This post is an entry for BritMums #VicksBabyRub Challenge, sponsored by Vicks BabyRub. Specially designed for babies aged six months and over, Vicks BabyRub is available at Boots, Superdrug, Tesco, Asda, Waitrose and all good pharmacy chains. RRP £3.99.
 

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What it’s Really Like Living With A 2-Year-Old

By Posted on 35 3 m read

We celebrated Gabriel’s 2nd Birthday this weekend and I still can’t seem to bring myself to admit he is no longer a baby. He is a toddler. Time has just flown so fast and it still feels like yesterday we were bringing him home for the first time. The last two years have been full of joy, laughs, tears and some pretty stressful moments. Being a parent is not a walk in the park but it is so rewarding. So to celebrate Gabriel officially entering the terrible twos. I thought I would share with you want it is really like living with a 2-year-old.

The Lil Chatterbox

The biggest change we have noticed is his increasing ability to communicate. The constant guessing game that we had when he was a baby is now a lot easier. He now tells me when he is hungry and whether he wants food or drink. And he has now started to tell me when his nappy needs changed! He is learning new words everyday and constantly surprises me with new phrases.

On top of his growing vocabulary one of the most amazing things is his ability to understand. Don’t be fooled! They understand almost everything we say to them. It has come to the point where my partner and I have to spell words out to each other in case he hears us and kicks up a fuss.

2-Year-Old

The Battle of wits

Did someone say terrible twos?? Yep this is when the battle starts. Long gone are the days of our sweet little compliant baby who will happily sit and play while you attend to dinner. Your toddler now knows what he wants and he is willing to test the limits to see how far he can go. This for me is the hardest phase of parenting I have so far encountered. It requires a lot of patience and consistency and can be quite hard when you are exhausted and alone with a strong willed toddler. Especially in a supermarket with everyone staring as your child screams the roof down.

As easy as it can be to give in to their demands at times, I remind myself that he is learning how to deal with new emotions and boundaries and that my job is to teach him.

The Parrot

Is there an echo in here? No, it is just my son repeating every single word I say. I didn’t realise how much he was picking up from me until I heard him saying “ahh suck”. I kept wondering what is he was saying? Suck?? stuck?? It wasn’t until I was in the kitchen and I dropped an egg on the floor and subconsciously said “OH F*#8$” that I realised. Oops! Naughty mummy.

The 2’s usually gets a bad rep, the Tantrums, the constant stress. Some of it may be true however it is also one of the most amazing ages you will ever experience. Their funny little characters start to shine through and the innocence and wonder they bring to your life as they discover the world is magical. Before we know it he will no longer be interested in cuddles and playing with mummy and daddy. So enjoy it. Soak it up before it is too late.

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Quick Meals For Your Toddler : Easy Delicious Egg Cups

Like most mums, I strive to be the best mum I can be. And a very important factor for me is proving my son with the optimum amount of nutrition he needs to grow and be healthy. I believe that home cooked meals and snacks give a better nutrition punch than pre made packaged food. That being said, I know first hand how the pressure to constantly cook healthy yet delicious meals can get drive you insane! That is why you need a repertoire of quick meals for your toddler.

So I have been trying to find new and easy snack and lunch ideas that can be done quickly so I am not slaving away at the stove throughout the whole day. One idea that has been a success for both me ( time  and nutrition wise) and Gabriel (Taste wise) has been egg cups.

Basically an omelette in muffin form. These delicious little cups are great finger food for your little one and are very easy to make. What is genius about them is that you can use anything you have in your fridge. Which means you can switch them up a bit. Some of my favourite variations are tomatoes, mushrooms and ham and courgettes and feta cheese.

Quick Meals For Your Toddler

QUICK MEALS FOR YOUR TODDLER

EASY DELICIOUS EGG CUPS

Makes 4-5 Cups

INGREDIENTS

3 Medium Sized Eggs

Filling of your choice: I used

5 Chopped Cherry Tomatoes

A handful of Baby Button Mushrooms

1/2 Diced Onion

Shredded Ham

Optional: You can add some shredded cheese for flavour if you eat dairy.

You will need

METHOD:

Preheat oven at 200°C. Whisk the 3 eggs in a bowl and then add your choice of filling. Oil a muffin tin and fill up to about 3/4 of the way with the egg mixture.  Pop them in the oven and leave them to cook for 20 Minutes.

Put them on a wire rack to cool. Once cooled serve to you little one with vegetable sticks or on its own.

You can keep these in the fridge for about 2 days.

There you go. A perfect lunch in minimum time!

Check out how we got our toddler to love bedtime 

Disclaimer : This post contains affiliate links

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How We Got Our Baby To Love Bedtime

It was a lovely evening and we were having a few drinks with friends at our house. Gabriel was his usual show off self, dancing and singing for our guests. As I get up to check on the meal I was preparing. Gabriel comes over and says nigh nigh and then proceeds to wave goodbye to everyone before heading to the stairs. “He wants to go to bed”, I turn and say to my husband. “Ok let’s go”. And with that Lee tucks him in bed and we carry on with our evening peacefully. Gabriel was only 15 months old. This is how we got our baby to love bedtime.

This is a normal night for us, but judging by the reactions from our friends and family. Is isn’t so normal. “I can’t believe he asks you to go to bed” a lot of them were saying. “Whats your secret?”.

It is an age-old question that all parents seem to be desperate to find the answer to. How do I get my baby to sleep at night? I have lost count on how many times this same subject has crept into our many  conversations with other parents. Everybody wants a good nights sleep. We have had our fair share of sleepless nights however we have rarely had trouble putting him to bed. As soon as he knows that it is bedtime he complies and a lot of the time he is the one telling us when he wants to go.

HOW WE GOT OUR BABY TO LOVE BEDTIME

So as requested, here are the techniques we used which made our son to love bedtime

1. Bedtime Routine

In every parenting book the first thing they always say is to have a routine and I tend to agree with them. Having a rough routine in place helps your child understand and predict what is going to happen next. If they already know, then they are less likely to fight it. We started Gabriel on a bedtime routine from 2 months old. Every night at 6:30 he would have a bath, followed by milk and then he was put down to sleep at 7pm. To this day, this is still his routine.

2. Sleep train, Sleep train, Sleep Train

I cannot emphasise this enough. You need to put the work in to reap the rewards. I spent hours teaching Gabriel to fall asleep on his own in his cot using gentle sleep training methods. It was tedious, and time-consuming but I knew that it was necessary. The aim is to teach them to fall asleep on their own without your assistance. The work paid off and from 3 months we could put Gabriel down in his cot and he would put himself to sleep. Pick a method and stick to it. Be consistent and patient and you will start to see it working.

3. Never use the bed or bedroom as a punishment

When Gabriel started to throw some of his epic tantrums my first reaction was to put him in his cot as punishment. I did it twice before I quickly became aware that it was affecting his sleep. What was usually a happy and peaceful place had for a brief moment become a place of despair for Gabriel. I realised that by punishing him in his room I was giving him mixed signals. When he was put to bed he wouldn’t understand if it was bedtime or if he was being punished for something. So my husband and I vowed to never use his room as punishment again. I proceeded to try to make his room a place of fun and peace again. And now it is his happy place again. Make their bedroom a happy place so that they feel that going to bed is a good thing and not a punishment.

4. Code word

Since I was a kid my mother used the term nigh nigh for going to sleep. I used it, my brother used it and so it was only natural that Gabriel used it. From the day he was born I referred to going to sleep as nigh nigh. This innocent little word is now his reference for sleep time and has proven very powerful in getting him to bed. He knows the moment we say ‘Its nigh nigh time’, that he needs to wind down. It was one of the first words he learnt to say and helped us to communicate when he was starting to get tired. Instead of him reaching the overtired stage or us having to guess why he is in a bad mood, he now immediately tells us by saying nigh nigh. Using a consistent and easy word for bedtime can help facilitate communication when you child is still too young to properly talk.

5. Reassurance

For us this is one of the most essential parts of parenting Gabriel. When I started to sleep train, I had decided very early on that I didn’t want to cry it out. At least not until he was a lot older. My view was that I wanted my baby to know that his parents were there and for him to feel safe. I felt that if he felt reassured that mum and dad were there if he needed us, it would give him the confidence to sleep on his own. This went hand in hand with the sleep training I did with him. Though I encouraged him to fall asleep on his own, I always made sure that he knew I wasn’t far away. We continue to use this tactic even now.

You will hit obstacles with sleep regressions, growth spurts and separation anxiety as they get older. However what has always worked for us is consistency and reassurance. I hope this helps

Happy Sleeping

Got an impatient toddler? Check out what worked for us

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How To Deal With An Impatient Toddler

When you first have a child it is human nature to put their needs above all else. I remember feeling like there was nothing more important than my baby. He needed feeding, I would feed on demand. He needed cuddling and comforting, I would drop everything and make sure he knew I was there. However now that he is older his needs are more complex. They are not so much needs per se, but more wants. I have quickly discovered that though the drop everything approach was essential to building my infant sons confidence and trust in his parents, it is not doing him any favours now as a toddler.

There are times in my household where I seriously have to ask myself who is the boss here.  It can feel like we have raised a mini dictator who will have no mercy on us unless we do what he wants.

 

The Rise of Our Mini Dictater

It came to my attention one night after Gabriel’s bath. His routine has always been the same, dinner, bath, bottle then bed. However this time Gabriel had decided that he couldn’t wait the few seconds it took to warm up his bottle. He needed it 5 minutes ago! Little did I know that me giving in to him this one time opened the door to something far worse. My son from then on became hell bent on dominating everything!

It wasn’t just his milk this time, which may I add I have never been able to warm up again since that day. It became him dictating to me when we left the house, when we had dinner, what TV show we had to watch and when we refused?  All hell broke loose. Tantrums because the bath was not filling up fast enough, because he wanted to go downstairs at 5am. Or because he wanted his dinner now even though I told him it is still hot ( I am a horrible mum for not letting him eat his food while it is burning hot!). This child had no patience and we were exhausted.

Time to Nip it in the Bud

How is this happening? My sweet little boy was developing a character, and a fierce one too (Where did he get that from? *cough *cough), and if we didn’t start making boundaries he was going to walk all over us. So we decided it was time to teach him how to be patient. Teach him that he is not the centre of the universe. He is not the boss of this family. He is a member of it. But how were we going to do that?

As ironic as it sounds, it required that Lee and I be patient with him in order to teach him patience. We both set out to explain to Gabriel when he needed to wait and why, and we vowed to not give in no matter what. When he become angry because he wanted his toast now. I would explain that the bread needed to be put in the toaster and we needed to wait for the pop. He now patiently waits for the pop and asks to put the bread in the toaster.We encourage him to play independently at times while explaining why mummy and daddy are busy. To our surprise it he quickly got the memo.

What to do when your toddler is impatient?

At first he resisted and there are still times when giving in feels like the easy option. Trust me, I know there are times when you just do not have the energy and you will do anything for a little peace and quiet. However we knew it would make things harder for us in the long run. We didn’t want him to grow up thinking that everyone everywhere needed to do what he wanted at all times. I am scared to raise a son who would grow up believing that the world revolved around him all because his parents gave in to him his whole life. Check out my post on Helicopter Parenting

 

Better to start earlier rather than later

One thing that has really helped in developing his waiting skills is his Gro Clock. A clock that is used for sleep training toddlers. The sun indicates when it is daytime and the star means it is bedtime. The idea is to teach the child to stay in bed until the sun appears. It has proved wonders with Gabriel. It didn’t take him long to understand the concept and he will now sit and wait for the sun to appear before he calls out to us.

I know that his behaviour is very normal for his age and it is still a work in progress. Parenting will always be a work in progress. However I believe it is necessary for us to start teaching him to be patient and learn to respect others around him sooner rather than later. They understand a lot more than we give them credit for and us nipping it in the bud early on has potentially saved us from a lot of problems in the future.

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Gluten Free Spinach and Feta Pie Recipe!

Since receiving our Wedding Gift list items from John Lewis I have been on a bit of a cooking spree. How amazing it is to finally have all of the kitchen utensils and bits you have always wanted. My desire to become the next Betty Crocker seems somewhat more feasible now that I have an arrange of lovely serving platters! Haha

Jokes aside, I love cooking and all my new gear has kick started a new motivation in me to create scrumptious yet healthy meals for my family (and some not so healthy!)

In order to get healthier my husband and I have decided to incorporate more vegetarian dishes in to our weekly meals. With more and more research suggesting that our overly meaty western diets are to blame for a lot of health problems we thought it no harm to try a few veggie meals.

Gluten Free Spinach and Feta Pie

We love Spinach and we love Feta. I remember eating delicious spinach and feta Pide from the local Turkish baker back when I was a kid. It was something I would always reminisce about and think to myself I must try to recreate something similar. So with my new platters, there was no stopping me :p!

Gluten Free Spinach and Feta Pie

Ingredients

1 Large Bag of Organic Baby Spinach – I buy the big bag from Sainsbury’s which is about 400g)

1 Chopped White Onion

1 Block of Feta

2 Pods of Crushed Garlic

2 Eggs

Splash of Olive Oil

Salt and Pepper

Jus-Rol Gluten Free Puff Pastry – This is new from Jus Roll and the pastry is just delicious. It has become my favourite gluten-free pastry since Genius.

Method

Preheat the oven to about 200°C

Put the chopped onion along with some Olive oil into a pan on medium heat.  Add the crushed garlic and sauté until the onions are translucent.

Boil the Kettle and put the spinach leaves into a large bowl. Cover the leaves with the boiling water and wait for the leaves to wilt.

Drain the water and put the spinach into a sieve and squeeze out any extra fluid. You need to make sure the water is properly squeeze out or you risk making the pastry too soggy.

Add the spinach to another bowl along with the onions, garlic, 2 eggs and as much crumbled feta as you like. Season with some salt and pepper and then mix together.

Lay the pastry onto a baking tray and heap the spinach and feta mixture into the middle of the pastry. Lift up the edges of the pastry so the mixture doesn’t come out and fold into a bowl like structure over the mixture.

Pop it in the oven for 20 to 30 minutes or until the pastry is golden brown. Cool for a few minutes before digging in.

Serve with a nice large salad.

Gluten Free Spinach and Feta Pie

The whole family loved it! I will definitely be making this one again!

Looking for something healthy for a sweet? Try these Sweet Potato Brownies

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Helicopter Parenting : When You Should Speak Up And When You Should Shut It

As I browse around a lot of the parenting websites that I often frequent. The term ‘Helicopter Parenting’ has come up quite a lot. At first I thought the term was quite funny and more tongue in cheek about parents who can sometimes be a bit paranoid when it comes to their little darlings. However I quickly learnt that there was a lot more to it than that.

So what is helicopter parenting? The official meaning according to google is a parent who takes an overprotective or excessive interest in the life of their child or children. Said like this, I don’t see what the big issue is. In my view, how other parents wish to raise their kids has nothing to do with me or anyone else but the parents of that child. However Helicopter parenting has evolved somewhat, and is now seen as nosy parents intervening in the raising and/or discipline of other people’s children.

So when is it ok to helicopter parent? and is it ever ok?

I remember when I was in Paris, and I was walking down the street. Down one of the Parisian side streets was a man dragging a young boy down the road into a car while the little boy screamed to the high heavens. At first glance I assumed that the man was the child’s father and that the boy was just throwing a tantrum for some reason or another. I continued to walk until a heavy feeling appeared in my stomach. What if he wasn’t the father? What if I had just witnessed an abduction but had done nothing because I had assumed it was nothing. I felt conflicted.

What was the right thing to do in this situation ? If this was the child’s father and I came in to helicopter over the situation I was surely going to piss him off. And rightly so. I would probably be a bit annoyed if my son was throwing a mega tantrum and some random came over to question what I was doing. But what if there was something sinister happening? How would I live with myself if my fear of upsetting someone and being seen as a nosy bystander stopped me from helping a child in need.

On the other hand there is the extreme of helicopter parenting. I have heard of many a story from fellow mums about nosy do-gooders intervening in things they have no place to intervene. I have heard of a stranger calling the police on a mother that let her pre-teen 12-year-old daughter sit in the car while she ran into the store to buy milk. Or have seen others criticize other parents choice of wipes, toiletries and child snacks to the point of bullying.

So is it ok to helicopter parent?

Thanks to a handful of overzealous parents overstepping the mark there is now a stigma around speaking up when you truly feel you should. I can see both ends. I know as a mother, if someone took it upon themselves to helicopter my child and challenge my parenting choices I would see red. But on the other hand if my child was in trouble, I pray that someone would have the guts to helicopter the situation and help my son.

So should we helicopter parent? If the situation truly has you fearing for the child’s safety. Then HELLYes. It is worth possibly feeling embarrassed for 2 minutes than to realised you could have helped a child when they needed it and didn’t. But if you do not agree with another parents approach to parenting their child and there is no danger to the child. Then butt out! If a parent chooses to let their baby cry it out, go down the attachment parenting route or make their own parenting plan. It is NONE of your business!

There are too many stories of children getting hurt and nobody speaking up because they were scared to be seen as being a busy body. So lets stop helicopter parenting over trivial things, and encourage all of our fellow mummies and daddies to support each other no matter if you agree or disagree with their parenting method and speak up only when a child truly needs a voice!

Check out on my post on when my son burnt his hand under my supervision, despite being a vigilant parent.

 

 

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My Toddler Burnt His Hand On My Hair Straightener, And The Guilt Is Killing Me

I would like to think I am a very switched on mother. My son always comes first with everything, and I always make sure he is safe from harm. I walk into a situation and assess the surroundings to make sure there is nothing he can get his hands on. But despite my constant vigilance, my son still got hurt. My Toddler Burnt His Hand On My Hair Straightener, and the guilt is killing me.

Now that Gabriel is a toddler I feel like he is changing and growing every single day. Every day he seems to have learnt something new. Whether it is suddenly speaking new words, or showing off his sporty side by playing golf and kicking a ball around. Yes he plays golf. However fascinating it is to see them quickly learning, it can also be a challenge. They suddenly are able to do things you didn’t realise they could do.

It was all my fault

Toddler Burnt His Hand On My Hair Straightener

It was another Tuesday as normal and Gabriel and I were getting ready for playgroup. Usual routine. Get Gabriel dressed first, then quick shower while he plays in my room watching me get ready. We have done it a thousand times. And we will probably do it thousand times more. However this time ended up with me rushing to A & E in a panic as my son screamed in pain.

As I was getting ready I looked at myself in the mirror. My hair was a mess. I am sick of looking like a frumpy mum so I decided to style my hair. Gabriel was across the other side of the room playing with a book when I took my hair straightener out. I quickly straightened a few stray strands and then unplugged the straightener and put it in the middle of my bed to cool down, out of reach and view of Gabriel, or so I thought.

He didn’t let go!

Talking and singing to Gabriel while I quickly put on some makeup. I heard him scream. Strangely it was not the pain stricken scream I would have thought. It was a scream he does almost every single day, and at first reaction I thought he had just fallen over or gotten frustrated with his book. Peering out to see what the fuss was about I saw him with his hand on my hair straightener. Fingers right on the hot plates. SHIT!

He had burnt his fingers on the hot plate, and to make it worse he didn’t have the reaction to let the plates go. He held onto them while screaming, making the burn worse. Panic took over me as I tried desperately to keep his hand under cold water while he wriggled and kicked around. My Poor baby who was so happy just a few moments ago was now shaking his hand and crying in pain.

I hated myself for letting it happen

Heading to A & E, panic turned quickly to guilt and I hated myself so much for letting this happen. Were all the nurses going to look at me and deem me as an unfit mother and call child services? How could I have let this happen? How the hell did he get hold of it?

Luckily the plates had already significantly cooled down and he got away with just a bandage on his hand for a week. When we got home I couldn’t shake the guilt and the wonder of how he reached it. Sitting at home after the ordeal I looked up to see Gabriel playing with my phone. How did he get my phone? It was on the counter top! Realisation kicked in. He can reach the countertop, hence he can reach onto my bed. He had grown faster and taller than I had realised.

Moral of the story. No matter how vigilant you are or how good a mum you are. Your child can still get hurt. Don’t underestimate your kids. They are more resourceful than you can imagine. This mama has learnt her lesson the hard way.

 

xxx

Your child gets hurt under your supervision

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Toddler Tantrum: When your child throws a tantrum for no reason!

By Posted on 7 3 m read

So it finally happened. I am finally apart of the tantrum club. I have to admit that I didn’t think it would come around so quickly. But what can i say, my boy is gifted.  I have always sympathised with parents whose kids have gone into total meltdown, even though I found it extremely entertaining. It must be hard for them. However I don’t think I fully grasped how frustrating it is until it was my own kid.

Gabriel has always been a good tempered baby. As long as his tummy was full and he had his naps he was as good as gold. It was a breeze. If he ever got grumpy I knew what to do. But now my 15 month old baby has mistaken himself for a 15 year old teenager. He knows what he wants and isn’t afraid of letting me know that he is not impressed with my mummying skills.

Toddler Tantrum

The First Time

The first time it happen is was a day like any other day. He had his naps, had his snacks. He was a happy chappy. Around 5pm he came over and gave me sign that he wanted dinner. (We taught Gabriel sign language so he can tell us when he was hungry) It was a half an hour early but i was willing to make an exception. So I pop him in his highchair and warm up his food and get him ready for dinner. He is excited. I make sure it is not too hot and then i start feeding him. A few mouthfuls in he lets out a massive scream and nothing I do can stop him.

OH MY GOD! Whats wrong? Did I just burn my baby’s mouth? No. Was there something sharp in the food? Nope. Were the bits too big? No way. Did he want some water? None of the above.

 

I couldn’t find a reason

My son was hysterical and angry. He started throwing his water cup on the floor. Hit at my hands when I tried to comfort him and refused to eat anymore. I didn’t understand. He was hungry, and now he won’t eat. Why won’t he stop crying. A hour and a half later he finally stops  and then casually waddles off and starts laughing and smiling, while my stress levels have sky rocketed.  What the???? I am scared, What just happened?

I put him into bed and he happily goes to sleep like nothing happened. Did I give birth to Damien from the Omen? Puzzled and a bit weirded out, I leave it and hope it doesn’t happen again. Except it does.  Dinner time again, he is hungry but chucking a major angry fit. Then it happens. He stops and I realise what this is about. Apparently mummy isn’t shovelling the food into his mouth fast enough!!!!!!

Toddler Tantrum

Apparently I am just an asshole parent

It can’t be? He refused to eat! He was so worked up that he didn’t want anything. So I experiment the next few days to see if this is the case.  And sure enough, when I wait a bit between mouthfuls he goes into full meltdown. Hating on me because how dare I wait for him to chew before giving him the next spoonful.

This wasn’t the only meltdown I have been experiencing. Apparently I don’t do anything right. Won’t let him jump down the stairs, meltdown! Won’t let him run out onto the right. Total Meltdown! He eats all of this snacks and there are none left. Complete Meltdown. Changes his dirty nappy, How dare I? Don’t even mention my iPhone. Check out my post about my sons iPhone Obsession here

Keep Calm

So fellow mums and dads, I am now part of the club, I feel you. I am sorry I laughed. Tantrums are no laughing matter.

Take comfort in knowing this is only a phase. He is learning to deal with his emotions and it is necessary for his development. Keep calm, and if all else fails it is ok to leave him to cry a little if you feel you are on the edge.

Has your child ever freaked you out? Tell me your tantrum stories..

 

Toddler Tantrum

 

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Dealing With Living Far From Family

By Posted on 9 4 m read

Living far away from your family can be difficult for everyone no matter what stage of life you are in. However once you become a parent that absence becomes more obvious and difficult to bear.

I have aways been a very independent person. If I need to do something I will do it and will rarely ask anyone for help, even if I need it. That is just a part of who I am, something I am trying to improve but with some difficulty. However since becoming a mother I have found myself more than once wishing that I had my family closer. That I had the support that I needed at times of crisis. (Read my post about how Parenthood makes you appreciate your parents)

“There were times when I felt like I was going to break”

It is no secret that parenthood has its rewards and challenges. To the never-ending kisses you receive before bedtime, to the times I felt like I was at breaking point. I am the first person to say that if you choose to have a child then it is your responsibility to look after them and work your life around your child. I would never expect any one of our family members to take on that responsibility and commitment. They have their own lives to live however sometimes you just need that little extra support to help you get back on your feet.

There were times when I felt like I was going to break. Back when Gabriel was a few months old and he just wouldn’t stop crying. He was tired, probably overly tired. But despite him being tired he just would not sleep. I remember standing over the crib rocking him and patting him desperately trying to soothe my crying baby for what felt like hours.

The constant sound of the crying was sending me overboard until I finally cracked. For a split second I lost control of my temper. For a split second I wanted to scream and throw him across the room. It was only a split second. But that split second sent me into an emotional spiral of guilt. I left him to cry while I went to my room and cried myself.

At that moment. I needed my mum. I needed someone that understood me and that I knew wouldn’t judge me. Someone that would sweep in and help no questions asked and reassure me that I was not the worst mother on the planet. I needed my own family.

“I needed someone that understood me”

Having family nearby has its obvious perks(Babysitting and home cooked meals). But one thing that comes along with it is Family Influence. When I see Gabriel with his grandparents from my partners side. It is a lovely thing to watch. He loves his grandparents and he knows who they are and what they represent. He is growing up with the same influence his father grew up with. But what influence does he have from my side of the family?

living far away from your family

My partners side of the family are all very sporty. They love their sports and I can see this influence rubbing off on my son already. My side however are very musical, a trait that my partners side do not posses. My brother and I grew up with the Burmese culture and some of my most treasured memories are from our big family dinners with lots of traditional burmese food. Singing and sharing stories with all of my uncles, aunties and cousins. Music and food was the essence of my childhood. How do I give that essence to Gabriel when there is only one person around to represent it?

Steps to Survive

As difficult as it can be, i think the first step to surviving without your family is to remember why there is distance in the first place and to learn to accept it. Besides moving back to Australia there is nothing I can do to change it. And the reason I live so far is because I chose to live in Europe.The next step is to do everything you can to keep in touch with your family and implement their influence and culture. We are lucky that we live in a day when technology is at its best. I am able to video call my folks whenever possible, and though it is not the same as being face toface. My family get to see Gabriel as he grows up and learns new things.

And finally know that even though your family are not close by, you probably do have a lot people that are more the willing to help if you ask them.  I know that my partners family as well as some of my friends would have helped me if I had reached out. That was just my own pride getting in the way. Sometimes being away from your own family gives you the opportunity to become closer to others. Family doesn’t always mean blood. It is a bond that you can have with anyone if you are willing.

 

Dealing with living far away from family

 

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