The Over-Protective Mum

Keeping my kids safe is my priority, but how safe is too safe? I talk about being over-protective and what it used to be like when I was a child. Check it out here!

When I was younger I lived in a time where I could go out and play on my own at around the age of 8. I lived in a council estate and to be honest it was pretty safe. I didn’t have to worry about much other than bumping into somebody I didn’t get along with, and end up falling out, but there was no stranger danger. It was quite a safe close-nit estate where everybody got on with each other most of the time.

As a child I loved my freedom of being able to be JUST A CHILD – getting dirty in the mud, using my imagination, running around with friends, rollerblading and just knocking on a friend’s door to play. I had a pretty decent childhood.


Now though as a parent and considering how much times have changed, I am more of a worrier when it comes to letting my children go out to play on their own without my supervision.

As much as I would love Faith and Wyatt to have a childhood similar to mine, there is so much increased danger nowadays with gangs, children going missing and full-on fist fights between children instead of the minor squabbles I used to get into as a child.

It honestly makes me feel like I’m a very overprotective mother and perhaps I may be. I think of worst case scenarios that could happen, even if it’s one of the children climbing on the kitchen side. They may think I ruin their fun but I’m just trying to make sure they don’t get hurt.

Looking back on my childhood I remember climbing trees and getting stuck on a garage roof, where my Dad had to come and get me down because I was scared of heights. He left me there for an hour to teach me a lesson though before he returned and made me jump so he’d catch me.

My question is where is the fine line between letting children roam free and enjoy their childhood whilst trying to keep them safe at the same time? It’s actually a really hard question that I’m struggling to answer.

As a parent there’s so much worrying involved when it comes to kids. I feel I may suffocate them too much trying to keep them safe by not letting them explore the way I did as a child.

In this generation children are more inclined to play video games and iPads, but by doing this do you think they are missing out on fun exploring nature and spending time with friends?

As a parent I think this topic is difficult. I’m stuck between letting my children enjoy their freedom and keeping them safe. I can imagine many parents may also struggle with this decision as times have changed so much.

I feel that perhaps I should let them be pop round to their friend’s house or even go to the park on their own, but every time this thought crosses my mind, the panic sets in.

What if they get lost?

Get into some trouble? Or even go missing?

Maybe one day when they’re older I’ll pluck up the courage to let them have their freedom, but for now I’m going to keep them close and make sure they’re safe.

Does that make me an overprotective Mum?

I’m just hoping that even though they may not get the freedom I once had as a child, they will still be able to have fun as a family and enjoy their childhood either way.


Are you an overprotective parent like me? Or are you brave enough to let your kids have their freedom? Let us know your story in the comments section below!

 

If you liked this blog post, you can check out similar blog posts here!

 

-Zoe

Mummy Confessions: Entry 5

Diary entry of a stressed-out mum dealing with 4 kids. What it’s like and how it feels to deal with them all at once!

It was the weekend again and I woke up on Saturday morning with the feeling of dread (cue Mum guilt). I just couldn’t bring myself to Mummy that day.

The children woke up around 6am and I knew it wouldn’t have been long before the bickering started.

I was right. It took about 10 minutes before I heard Faith screaming at her brother and then all hell broke loose.

Aurora crying, Faith and Wyatt physically fighting each other, and then I heard them run downstairs to help themselves to food out the fridge. They even brought some up for Aurora.

The atmosphere changed between them within minutes from fighting to happily munching on yogurts. I went to make my morning coffee and my much-needed cigarette to get me through the day.

After getting myself and all the children sorted (I painted my nails just to make myself feel that little bit more like myself), I went downstairs to make breakfast. Faith and Wyatt wanted porridge but that wasn’t a problem because Aurora likes porridge too.

No fussy eaters this morning, woo! That’s one hurdle I didn’t have to cross this morning. They sat at the table and munched away. I thought I’d treat myself this morning and make eggs and soldiers – I haven’t had them for years so I thought why not.

I didn’t think this would cause such a rumpus. Faith came running in.

‘Ooo, Mum can I have your eggs?’

‘Nope it’s my breakfast. You’ve just had porridge.’

Considering Faith is 8 in June, I wasn’t expecting a major meltdown after I said ‘No’, but she certainly had one.

She threw her weight around bellowing that it was unfair, and that I should have given her the eggs and just had cereal myself instead.

I must admit this girl is definitely hard work at the moment. Is this normal for her age? I’m really starting to wonder.

It was 20 past 1 in the afternoon and I hadn’t got much done at all. I felt like all I had been doing was yelling at my oldest daughter. It’s exhausting, and it’s not something I want to be doing all the time, but what’s a mum to do?

I found myself repeating instructions and she didn’t listen to a word of it until I’m screaming like a crazy person. She’s impatient, doesn’t do as she’s told and extremely horrible to her younger brother at times. Don’t get me started with her answering back. I honestly feel like I’m raising a teenager. I feel emotionally drained I want the old Faith back.

Wyatt, besides the full-on fight they had that morning, has been as good as gold and had been keeping his little sister occupied running up and down the kitchen pushing her toy trolley with Aurora following behind with her pram. I love seeing the bond between those two – it’s a lovely sight to see.

Parenting can be so hard sometimes. I must admit days like those are a struggle. I had even felt like hiding away and getting lost in a book, but what kind of Mum would that make me?

I’m not ashamed about how I feel sometimes, because after all I’m only human and kids can be very demanding, goby and not always behaved. I don’t for one second regret having them because they’re my world, even though sometimes I could quite happily knock them out (not literally of course).

As it was Mother’s day the following day, I had hoped it would have been a better day and perhaps I could have had a lie in (laughing hysterically – didn’t expect it for one moment), or at least been given the excuse to scoff some chocolate first thing in the morning.


Mother’s Day


It’s was Mothering Sunday and that lovely lie in was amazing (ha I fooled you!). I didn’t actually get one. Instead again right on cue they woke up at 6am.

Faith burst in whilst it was still early with a card she made me from school and a picture that she drew. She came over to give me a cuddle and said she had a surprise for me downstairs. I prised myself out of bed and she took my hand.

A surprise it was! She made me some cereal in her bowl and wait for it….

….a glass of wine at 7am in the morning. I laughed

‘Thank you but Mummy doesn’t drink wine first thing in the morning.’

(What kind of person does she think I am?)

She then asked whether I could sort out her breakfast. I gave her mine instead as I couldn’t stomach anything that early in the morning. I returned upstairs to find a present Liam got for me from the kids – Chocolate and Fudge, Yummy!

I was naughty and ate a few there an then. Funny how I can’t stomach food first thing but if you give me chocolate, that’s a different story.

Later that day Wyatt and Faiths behaviour became out of control and I couldn’t believe how naughty they were being, especially on Mother’s day. I had enough already! I hate shouting at my kids but when I went upstairs, I was gobsmacked to see how much they destroyed their bedrooms. Enough was enough! This behaviour had to change.

I went downstairs to have a very stern word with them. I explained that this wasn’t the way to behave. I had an entire speech spout from my mouth, but to be honest I didn’t know where it came from. This Mama was determined to nip this in the bud.

I think it had actually worked. They both were teary eyed and upset. They even apologised. Faith admitted to me that she plays up purposely just to wind me up. At least she was honest. I’m hoping they have both finally turned a corner.

I know they’ll have their moments as all kids do but they aren’t bad children and just need to be reminded now and again of that.

We are going to have a takeaway tonight and a bit of family fun to make up for last weekend’s antics.

 

If you liked this blog post, you can check out similar blog posts here.

Or alternatively you can find more confession entries here!

 

-Zoe

3 WEEKS to Go!

Moving day is slowly approaching. Here’s an update of where we are, and what’s left to do… Tick Tock Tick Tock…

I recently wrote a blog post called  ‘Countdown To Moving‘ letting you all know that we have decided to move back to our hometown. If you haven’t already read through it, you can check it out here!


We had finally received some good news today. The place we’re moving into is nearly complete and we have a rough date of when we shall be moving in! I haven’t felt this excited in ages.

We still having a million and one things to organise before, and when we get there but it will certainly be worth it to get back to our hometown, and be able to go out for date nights again once a month like we used to (living close to family again has its perks).

We are currently trying to get the children into a school in Wales. We received the forms in the post, and even though we contacted the school recently, we have to go through a protocol filling in forms then having to wait to hear back from them whether the kids have been accepted or not (fingers crossed they will be).

The only frustrating thing about moving schools is buying a whole new uniform. I’ve been informed that the jumpers are around £16 each and as i’m going to require 2 of them for each child, it’s certainly not going to be cheap. It does come in handy that the rest of the uniform can be bought at most supermarkets and are fairly affordable.

We haven’t done much preparation or packing yet, but we ought to start soon – I want to smooth out and de-stress the move as much as possible. I packed at least two boxes yesterday full of children’s books and toys (OK OK I was trying to save myself some housework – less tidying up for me – a Mums dream).

Faith is such a messy child especially when it comes to her room, so with many of her toys and books being packed away its less mess for her to make for me to have to tidy.

With only three weeks until we up and leave, i’m currently looking around the house wondering what to pack away next. To be honest I’ve not got the foggiest.

There is a lot to think about when it comes to moving especially with 4 kids in toe. I’ve only ever moved with 3 and that was hectic enough as it was!

We are attempting to move in one trip but that means plenty of work to be done in such a short amount of time, including cleaning the house throughout and loading the van while looking after the little blessings I call my children.

Then there’s the travelling, unloading and putting away. The thought of it alone is exhausting but at least when it’s all done we can finally relax and start enjoying the perks of being back.

The beach awaits, and we have plenty else to enjoy going back to the place that will always be our home.

North Wales.

We will keep you updated on the hectic days ahead!

 

If you liked this blog post, you can check out similar blog posts here!

 

-Zoe

Snow Angel and the Lost Keys

Woke up to a lovely surprise blanketed by snow this morning. School’s closed which meant one thing – FUN IN THE SNOW WITH THE KIDS! Read our latest post about our fun antics in the snow today!

I was prised awake by the sound of Aurora shouting this morning. It must have been around half 5. I hid under the duvet, not ready to clamber out of bed and I knew that within a few minutes all three of them would be awake shouting and banging.

As I lay there not entirely conscious, my phone buzzed. Who would be texting me this early in the morning?

I reached around for my phone on the floor with my eyes still partly closed to uncover a text message from the children’s school that read:

‘We are sorry. Due to adverse weather conditions we are closing the school. Sorry for any inconvenience caused.’

My first thought, ‘What weather conditions? It was raining yesterday.’

I rolled over and informed Liam that the school had closed due to the adverse weather. He jumped out of bed to discover the street had been blanketed in snow.

Astonished by the surprise, he ran to see the children.

‘Have you seen outside guys? There’s no school today.’

Faith was the first one to scream with excitement then they all mimicked just on cue. I must admit I was excited that we finally had snow but I think my fatigue won. I hid under the duvet right until Faith and Wyatt burst in not even 5 minutes later, bouncing around and yelling,

‘Mummy mummy, can we go to the park now and play in the snow?’

To my reply

‘Yes but I need a coffee first. It’s only 8 o clock!’

I wasn’t ready to go and freeze my titties off just yet, at least not without having my usual morning coffee.

We got all the kids sorted ready to go and managed to leave the house around half 10. It’s never as simple as just leaving the house though. Wyatt had to take his ribbet, Faith her teddy, Aurora her milk and finally Kiiara needed a quick feed.


We took a stroll towards the park. Well I say stroll, the kids ice skated in their wellies along the footpaths, soaking me along the way. I must admit the sight of the snow was beautiful and I felt the child-in-me come alive (was pumped and ready for a snowball fight!).

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The children have never seen snow before so hearing their excitement as they ran through this white glistening blanket was like music to my ears. This is what childhood should be like, full of fun and wonder and complete innocence.

It was me that started it, the snowball fight that is. Liam was going to get it! As he crouched to collect snow to make a snowman, I threw one at him. This was going to be fun.

He turned around assuming it was our dearest daughter but displaying a wicked grin on my face, he knew it was me. That’s when all the fun began – All Out WAR.

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We all burst into laughter as we chased each other around throwing snowballs at one another. At one point all 3 of them decided to target me. Wyatt on one side, Faith on the other and Liam in-between (no way was this playing fair!).

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All of a sudden Liam dropped to the floor and decided to make a snow angel. This is one of the reasons I love this man – he’s not afraid to be just one of the kids.

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Faith looked at him but decided against rolling around in the snow like a loon. Instead she chose to throw more snowballs at me.

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She was definitely enjoying herself until she fell over and obtained snow in her wellies.

Then came along the tears

‘I’m cold I want to go home’.

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I think she was finally tired after getting up so early in the morning. We went to make our way home, Faith advancing very very slowly because she was cold (I’ve never got the logic in this. They always seem to walk slower when in bad weather).


Just when I thought everything was going great, right on cue the drama started. Wyatt lost his ‘ribbet’ whilst he was playing around in the snow and had a major meltdown.

Liam went to help him look. 5 minutes later we had discovered it was actually in his pocket (meltdown averted). Take 2. Time to slowly trudge home.

Nope, Wait! Liam lost the door keys in the snow somewhere. He had to run back to the park to attempt to find them. He found them quite quickly as he had established he might have lost them in his snow angel that he made.

As he came running back we thought we’d make the most of the snow day.

Popped to the shop to get some chocolate for us all and cream of course for the hot chocolates we were going to make. The kids snuggled on the sofa to watch a DVD under a blanket in their pjs because, why not? It was a special day after all!

 

If you liked this blog post, you can check out similar blog posts here!

 

-Zoe

Creative Kids & Quiet Colouring

Getting creative – drawing, colouring, and a FREE surprise in today’s post!

My kids always request blank paper from me to draw on. It’s nice they like to draw, but they end up with a pile of scribbled-on paper in their rooms, without a place and gathering dust.

I’d like to say they produce works of art, though hopefully that will come later in life. I still enjoy seeing their artwork despite not being able to make out exactly what they had drawn – practice makes perfect ayy.

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Colouring books are usually a stocking filler we get them for Christmas or a side present we get them for their birthdays.

 

A large book full of pages to colour on which you’d expect to take them a while to complete, and a nice long quiet break from the kids for Zoe and I, but that’s too easy. Is it even possible to have nice, settled children who’d spend days or even weeks colouring without so much as a peep out of them? 

Here’s how it goes down:

Hands over the colouring book.

“Thanks Mummy and Daddy!”

Kids run off upstairs into their rooms.

Hears a slight hustle and bustle upstairs.

(Fairly muted) “I want that pen! Give me that pen!”.

“No I need it! Ouch, Wyatt!”

“Ouch, Faith. You hurt me!” 

This goes on for a little while. What seems like 10 minutes later (how time flies when the kids aren’t in your hair) the kids scramble down the stairs.

“Finished!”

(Surprised) “What!? That’s an entire book. Probably around 150 pages full to colour! Surely you couldn’t have finished it all?”

“Yes. Have a look.”

They present their books to me. Every page filled with colour, though not how I wanted them to fill it out like. Every page filled with scribbles, barely any colour within the set lines.

I sigh.

My peace and quiet from the kids merely lasted about 10 minutes even though it was intended to last weeks. Oh how I was wrong, so wrong. If I calculate it accordingly, 150 pages = 10 minutes, so 1500 pages should last around 100 minutes theoretically.

Just over an hour and a half will do. But somehow I just know that will never be the case……..

I used to colour as a kid too, so I know how fun it can be. I’d always try my best to keep within the lines so my picture would emulate a ‘piece-of-art’ in my mind once completed.

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What pictures did you used to colour-in as a child? 


I had an idea a little while back of designing my own colouring page that the kids could have a go at colouring in themselves.

I put my skills to the test and made one. I printed off 2 copies of it and let the kids colour them in.

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They seemed to enjoy doing it. They liked the design and they read what the text said on it. ME, YOU & OUR MINI ZOO.

As a little gift to you, I am giving this coloring page away for FREE so that you can print it off yourselves and let your kids have a go at colouring them!

MYMZ Colouring Printable JPEG

Thought it would be a nice gesture to give back to our followers as a Thank You for supporting our blog.

You can find the PDF download file via this link or you can simply ‘Right-Click’ and choose ‘Save Link As’.

Me, You & Our Mini Zoo Colouring Printable

 

If you had any favourite colouring pages you used to colour as a kid, please share with us in the comments section below. We’d love to hear about them!

 

If you liked this blog post, you can check out more daddy blogs here!

 

-Liam

Siblings & The Green-Eyed Monster!

Only child? New sibling? Feel intruded? This is exactly how Faith felt the first time her brother came into her life. Find out about her story of jealousy and more in today’s latest post here!

Being a Mum of more than one can sometimes put stress upon the elder children where they are having to get used to idea of transitioning from an only child to include an extra sibling in the family.

I reveal what it’s like for my oldest daughter Faith to have been in that position, and what had happened when she had a little brother for the first time.


Faith was an only child until she was 17 months old so she got all the attention and was spoilt rotten, but when Wyatt was brought along she showed some jealousy towards him.

She came round to the idea of being a big sister and they got along really well – they had always played together. Having them close together in age was a blessing.

Now they are older all they do is bicker, but I have noticed recently her jealousy has worsened, and much so from what I saw yesterday.

Wyatt received a Student-Of-The-Month Award, so being the proud Mummy I was, I snapped up a photo and set his certificate on the fridge.

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Faith was troubled by this. She pouted at me and uttered,

‘You’ve never done that with me’ (I have done it with her many times before now).

To my reply,

‘I have when you’ve had an award from school!’

Not long afterwards we had a giggle in the kitchen the 3 of us and it prompted us to take some photos together.

Faith became dispirited over this too and expressed how unfair it was despite being involved in the pictures – she didn’t like that I took a picture of me and Wyatt first instead of her.

She had a pouty moment, but I managed to sort the situation out. I didn’t realise how much I could annoy a child so much by taking a simple photograph.

I’m not sure where her jealousy stemmed from. Perhaps as there were 2 of them and now there’s 4, she’s unhappy as she doesn’t receive as much attention as she used to.

I try to split my time between them all and I know it will get easier when Kiiara becomes older, but for now its like I’m trying to split myself into 6 different pieces. One for my partner, some time for me and every other piece for the children.

It’s like a constant competition with the older two. If one gets praised the other one gets furious and recites how unfair it is. They are constantly trying to get each other into trouble. Is it just a sibling thing I wonder?

Faiths jealousy doesn’t extend much towards Aurora. She has never shown any jealousy towards her even when Aurora was a little baby. She enjoyed having another little girl to play with.

This time however I noticed the green-eyed monster gawked its ugly head at Wyatt instead. He gets very jealous of his younger sister. I think perhaps that was because despite having an older sister, he has to now contend with a younger one too.

Wyatt is now very close to Aurora but he can also be very mischievous and sly towards her. It happens often by winding her up and taking her toys away from her whilst she plays with them (Wyatt certainly knows about this when he does. Aurora doesn’t let him get away with it!). Who would think such a little person could have such a massive scream!


Throwing Kiiara into the mix rattled the routine slightly, but to be honest there hasn’t been an awful amount of jealousy occurring from any of them, not even from Aurora which to my surprise I thought there might have been some.

Saying that though, Aurora is a Daddy’s girl and she knows as soon as I put Kiiara down she can have cuddles with me and be picked up.

It’s quite an experience going from two to four children. There is a lot to shuffle around and days don’t always go to plan, kids argue, toddler screaming and baby crying can sometimes lead to a Mummy hiding (shhhh).

Even though it’s hard work, I’m hoping the jealousy subsides and they all become little angels and learn to get along (wishful thinking).

Faith’s birthday is coming up in June so I’m hoping for one-to-one time with her. Getting her hair done will make her realise that no matter how many kids there are I still love her just the same as the other 3, and she will also always be my baby!

 

I would love to hear any of your stories of jealousy between siblings in the comments section below, and whether you managed to iron it all out.

 

If you liked this blog post, you can check out similar blog posts here!

 

-Zoe

Sick Chick And The Star-Shaped Biscuit

Star-shaped biscuits, the imposter, illness and more in today’s latest blog post!

It was the weekend again and Saturday was off to a good start. The kids were hyperactive as usual, but they let Daddy and I have a lie-in, which is extremely rare in this household.

Faith actually tidied her room (What an odd phenomenon – questions ran through my mind. Who is she really? What’s happened to Faith? Sod Faith, can I have this good girl instead?).

We got up and made our breakfasts. Faith, out of random curiosity, asked how money worked (another reason I believed she had been replaced by someone else). Liam, being the know-it-all of the household more than happily elaborated on this topic and within half an hour were discussing business and how it all worked.

Faith was amazed by this enlightenment. I found it really cute to see Daddy and Daughter bonding.

Faith asked Daddy to come and play shops with her so she could learn about money furthermore, so we’d made some cash notes and coins out of paper and off they scampered upstairs, using blocks as products to sell to each other.

Listening to them all playing upstairs was rather cute, even though Faith and Wyatt were bickering now and again over who had the most money.

The game finished after about an hour, so I thought since I had everything done, I’d make biscuits with the kids. It was a Saturday after all!

We made star-shaped biscuits. They were so simple to make that even I couldn’t mess them up this time. They certainly went down a treat and we had a very fun Saturday with minimal stress. Hallelujah!


Sunday morning arrived and the tables turned. I woke up feeling like death. A monumental churning of nausea brewed inside my tummy, so I ran to the toilet just in time before I spewed everywhere (it wasn’t the biscuits, honest!).

I felt awful. I ended up with a dreaded sickness bug. Not sure where it came from or who I got it off (bloody kids!) but I didn’t feel like adulting that day.

With 4 kids to look after, I didn’t have much choice other than to prise myself out of bed and continue things very slowly. I couldn’t stomach anything, not even a slice of toast.

It hit about half 12 and I really couldn’t take anymore adulting. I simply felt like conking out and getting some rest. I thought perhaps I would feel better afterwards, but then I had some Mummy guilt set in immediately.

Despite feeling really poorly, I felt like I shouldn’t have just left the kids to their own devices even though they were perfectly safe. I was their Mummy and they needed my attention, and besides I still had a load of housework to do.

Liam persuaded me to have a lazy-Sunday sick day. We condemned Faith and Wyatt in front of the television and put a DVD on for them to watch with some crisps, drinks and a blanket to snuggle under too.

Aurora went for her routine afternoon nap, so everything was set! I COULD HAVE MY OWN NAP!

I clambered into bed with Kiiara and had a cuddle with her until we both fell asleep. Next thing I knew it was 20 past 3 in the afternoon. I felt slightly better.

Aurora woke up from her nap and the kids began emerging from downstairs up into my room shouting ‘MUM!’.

I dragged myself out of bed and went to complete everything else that I needed to finish. It took me much longer than usual, but I emulated a walking zombie.

As of today I still don’t feel one hundred percent, but I don’t want to live with Mummy guilt not having anything done. One sick day was enough for me!

 

If you liked this blog post, you can check out similar blog posts here!

 

-Zoe

Becoming Mum – Learning To Love Your Body

After having a baby, it can be hard to love yourself again. Confronting it and taking action, all here in today’s latest blog post!

Finding out you’re going to become a Mum is a very exciting occasion and can also be very nerve-racking. All these changes your body will have to endure while growing a little human inside of you – the stretchmarks, changes to your boobs, raging hormones, and putting on weight.

Let’s face it, after having a baby our bodies aren’t ever going to be the same.

I was a really slim build before I got pregnant with Faith, then after having another 3 babies, it certainly changed my body image completely from how it used to be (I went from a size 6 to a size 10).

I must admit I love having bigger boobs now because of breastfeeding!


Learning To Love My New Body


It took me a while to learn to love my new body image. I didn’t like to look at myself in the mirror naked because I honestly felt ugly. I had a baby belly.

I had so many stretch marks all over my stomach. It made me feel so unattractive even though in the back of my mind I knew it had to be done in order to make my 4 beautiful babies.

I’m sure some of you may relate to this uncomfortable feeling after having children of your own, but i’ve found a few things helped me learn to love myself again, besides obviously having bigger boobs of course.

I spoke to Liam about how I was feeling. I knew he loved me but my body had changed since I met him over 3 years ago, and I was honestly worried he wouldn’t find me attractive anymore.

Speaking to him however, helped. He told me how beautiful I was just the way I am. It took me a while to believe this, but he also assisted me in gaining the confidence to really look at myself in the mirror, despite how uncomfortable I felt doing it.

I pushed myself for 5 minutes a day, whilst in my mind naming what I’d liked or even loved about my body. Being pushed out of my comfort zone made me feel that little bit better about myself everyday. Small but progressive steps.


Feeling Comfortable Enough To Have Sex After A Baby


I’ve seen many people discussing this topic on social media lately, expressing their struggle to love their body enough in order to feel comfortable in the bedroom with their partners.

Remember YOU are STILL YOU despite the extra weight you may have gained or the extra wrinkly bits! That same man who fell in love with you before you had children still loves you after having them, if not more for having his babies!


Getting Through Your Insecurities


I thought I would share a few tips that had helped me get through my own insecurities after having my babies.

  1. Communication with your spouse is important! He may be able to abolish those negative thoughts you may be having about yourself.
  2. Wear something pretty even if it makes you feel uncomfortable. Try to push yourself to wear something nice, and it will make you feel ten times better.
  3. Stand in the mirror. Really look at yourself – every detail and note down the things you love about your body. Try not to focus on the things you don’t like, positivity is key at this stage!
  4. If you’re having a bad day and don’t feel particularly pretty, try putting on some makeup – it might just make you feel that little bit better. It’s done exactly that when i’m having one of those unpleasant days.
  5. More importantly look at those beautiful children of yours. Your body formed them. You created a miracle, and without those extra nobbly bits you have now, you wouldn’t be the amazing Mum you are today!
  6. If it helps work on what you don’t like about yourself. I’ve lost my bum since having Kiiara and i’ve recently set apart some time to do some squats everyday to get it back (I’m hoping it works).
  7. Most of all, be proud of yourself. You made a beautiful child who looks up to you. Nothing is more important than that!

 

Remember you are a beautiful woman no matter what size or shape you are. You are unique and if you believe that yourselves, you’ll feel on top of the world!

 

If you liked this blog post, you can check out similar blog posts here!

 

-Zoe

It All Started With Sticky Toffee Pudding!

Sticky toffee pudding, a sleepless night, and a singing ‘Pansy’. Find out what all these have in common in this latest blog post here!

Everything was going to plan yesterday – this mama was on a roll!

I had all 3 kids bathed, washing done, and clothes ready for the kids for pyjama day at school the following day (a world book day event).

I thought i’d treat everyone by preparing a lovely sticky toffee pudding and custard (happy kids = happy mummy). I even managed to get them all to bed by half 7, which only meant one thing – I got to spend some time with the other half and make a start on reading my new book!

It turned 12am and we thought we would call it a night. All the little monkey’s were fast asleep, until I lay my head on the pillow. I heard Faith yell ‘Mum!

My first thought,

‘What now? You were all asleep not just 5 minutes ago’ (Clock strikes 12. Demons awake. All hell breaks loose).

Faith: ‘Aurora has been sick!’

Liam ran out of bed to clean her and lay her back down to sleep. He came back. All was quiet again.

Yay, time to get some shut eye.

Just as we closed our eyes, ‘Mum! Aurora has been sick again’. My turn this time. I changed her, stripped her bed and attempted to get her back to sleep again.

I swear her Daddy has a magic touch because when I went to lay her down, she had screamed for at least half an hour later. What does he have that I don’t? Apart from a penis ofcourse…….

Finally there was peace in the mini zoo once again. Surely nothing else could have gone wrong right?


Aurora woke up again for the third time bellowing away. It was closing in on 2am and Faith yammered out loud,

‘Oh no have you been sick again?  It’s ok Aurora!’

I was utterly exhausted and so was poor Aurora. Faith seemed to bare an unnatural burst of energy at the most unusual of times – it just came from nowhere. I let her deal with it this time.

Third time lucky. Perhaps I was able to get some sleep. Surely my little baby didn’t have any more sick she could bring up. It took her a little while but she then managed to get some sleep.


5AM Wake Up Call


I heard noises which slowly stirred me awake – I heard singing. What? It was Wyatt’s turn now. No joke he was singing in the bathroom on the toilet, and although was quite humorous to listen to, it wasn’t the most appropriate of times to be singing his little heart out.

I rose out of bed and instructed him to get back to sleep. He grunted and I soon heard him close his bedroom door behind him.

I crawled back in to bed where Kiiara was, just laying there smiling at me (time to be a milk machine once again). I knew I wasn’t going to get much sleep the rest of the night.

I lay there thinking of all the mumsy things I’d have to sort out in the morning. Oh my, the washing. My dryer broke, f**K!

I must have nodded off again but soon heard the children giggling away. The alarm hadn’t even gone off yet. Cradling my head in my hands, I thought surely that was enough bad luck for today.

I peeled myself out of bed this morning and went to make a coffee which was to fuel me awake for the rest of the day (So I always hope).

I was joined by the singing star himself who just kept talking. I wasn’t ready for his babbling just yet. I needed my coffee first to survive the morning hussle bussle.

As I did the usual changing-of-the-bum of my youngest, she spouted wee all over the bed. Yet another task I would have had to do after I got home from taking the monkey’s to school (adding to my list of things-to-do).


Getting Them Out The Door


The time had come to leave for school and the children were to take their favourite books and teddies with them. The ones they had picked weren’t the ones they doubtlessly wanted to take after all, so off they ran upstairs to exchange their books.

Still not ready. Faith only had one shoe on and still needed her hair putting up into a ponytail. Whilst this was happening, Aurora clung round my leg requesting to be picked up. This day was getting worse and it was only 10 to 9.

At last they were at school! Another coffee was in order to stop my eye balls drooping to the floor. I wouldn’t say it would have looked pleasant. I didn’t think much else could go wrong. I’ve got this under control!


The Morning Poop


As I sat down to feed Kiiara, she had her usual morning poo as she drank from me (I’m glad she didn’t do that on the bed too- think I would have just thrown my duvet out otherwise).

Gazing up at me with her mischievous eyes and a massive smile, she then let it rip!

When she finished her morning ritual, she fell asleep.

Suddenly I felt a warmth on my leg. Oh shit! No seriously, I mean shit! She actually shit on me! This can’t be happening. A bomb went off in her pants and exploded up her back and leaked all over me. Through her sleep suit and all over my jeans.

I’ve now been pooped on and Kiiara seemed quite satisfied with herself. A target I was, and she got bullseye! It’s quite obvious to me now they have been all out to get me (full moon last night I wonder?).

It all seems calm for now, but i’ve now learnt to NEVER NEVER EVER ask myself

‘Can anything else go wrong today?’

because I’ve certainly found out from experience, YES, YES IT CAN!

…….And It all started last night with a sticky toffee pudding!

 

If you liked this blog post, you can check out similar blog posts here!

 

-Zoe

Becoming a Dad

An insight into my experience of becoming a Dad for the first time – my feelings, thoughts, and preparations. Find out more here!

I had always fantasised being a Dad later in my life – a 30 to 40 year old man who had settled in a career, a nice family home with a car and a drive, and married to the love of my life.

Nothing ever goes according to plan, but I don’t regret a single moment of it.


Making The Decision


I was with Zoe for a few months now, helping her raise Faith and Wyatt. We were very loved up and enjoyed spending time together.

Zoe was on the implant – a contraception that is inserted into the arm. She had been on it for years and not long before we met, had it replaced.

Every now and again Zoe would joke about having a kid together (hint hint, nudge nudge. I know how you girls work!). I’d refuse every time, but it got me thinking about it in the back of my mind. How I’d love to have a child with the woman I love!

One midsummer’s night, we had settled in bed and were talking about anything and everything. The conversation moved onto the kids and how we didn’t enjoy sharing them with Mr D. Out of the blue, though not intending to say it out loud, Zoe burst out with:

‘Shall I get my implant removed?’ 

To her surprise and in total positivity, I replied with

‘Yes!’  

Gobsmacked as she was, we both shared a loving gaze together and cuddled through the night.


No Going Back Now


 

It came the day to have Zoe’s implant removed. We drove up to the family planning clinic and struggled to find a parking space. Worried we wouldn’t be able to have it removed before closing, I parked on double yellow lines. (They’re only open on Tuesdays, and we didn’t want to have to wait another week).

We sat in a quiet waiting room with our number. There were few others sat around, many of which were teenagers. Uncomfortable as we were, we conversed between ourselves.

In the back of my mind I was thinking about my car and not wanting to get fined. No sign of Zoe getting called in just yet, so I ran outside to my car to move it. I found a reasonable space not too far away and ran straight back to the clinic.

Moments later Zoe was called in. Just in time……

This paramount moment was the beginning of something yet to come. I was both nervous and excited from what this was going to stimulate (Don’t be dirty guys. That comes later!).

Her implant had been removed. There was no going back now!


Trying For A Baby


 

After having the implant out, Zoe and I had been trying for a little while. This was the fun part, as you can imagine.

It wasn’t too long after Fifty Shades of Grey had been released and we were enjoying our couples time together. Date nights, mountain adventures, and long drives.

Though we were enjoying our freedom at that time (whilst the older two had been spending time with their Dad on the weekends), it didn’t take that long for things to start progressing.

That takes us onto the next section.


The Test


Things were different and I don’t mean between Zoe and I, but instead her well being. She had been shopping in Morrison’s for our weekly shop and suddenly became dizzy and nauseous.

Zoe’s friend was concerned and proclaimed she ought to buy a pregnancy test out of curiosity.

Back at home, Zoe took the test. She called me in and asked

‘Am I seeing things or is there two faint lines?’ 

I took the test from her and squinted.

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‘There’s definitely something there’

Zoe replied, ‘Oh my God, we’re pregnant!’ 

I shot over to Zoe, pulled her close and gave her a huge cuddle. We were extremely happy. That was it, I now knew I was going to be a Daddy! 9 months and counting!


12 Week Scan


It was time to go and see baby for the first ever time. We made our way to the hospital and waited in reception ready to be called.

10 minutes later, it was Zoe’s turn. We entered the sonographer’s room. This was the first ever time I had been in one. I’ve seen them plenty of times in the movies, but this was much darker and more confined. It hadn’t bothered me though as I was about to see our baby for the first time.

The sonographer positioned the Doppler onto Zoe’s belly and there baby was. On the screen clear as day. I couldn’t stop myself, a tear fell from my eye. Zoe and I looked at each other and shared a look. We were overjoyed and ecstatic. We made a baby!

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After seeing baby, we knew what we had to do next. We had to make…….


Preparations


 

A baby was baking inside of Zoe, so it was important to get everything ready beforehand. This meant baby clothes, Moses basket, fitted sheets, nappies, toys, car seat/ carrier, pram, hospital bag and much more.

THE SHOPPING BEGAN. 6 months pregnant and looking around for bits and bobs we may have needed for baby. I’m quite a traditional guy – what my parents did when I was younger I would have liked to have done with my own kids.

They have baby books of me and my sisters. This was something I knew I wanted for my first born at least. Looking around for one was a bloody nightmare! It was late winter and no where seemed to have supplied a decent one.

I was adamant not to spend a fortune on one, but soon realised the only way I could get one was if I went to a baby specialist store – one that rhymes with ‘Brothercare’.

Inside the store, it was perfect for somebody like me who wanted to splash out on my newborn.

I looked at the baby books. They were quite pricey, but seeing as how this will be a priceless sentiment for when our child is older, a few extra pennies is worth it.


Supporting Zoe Through Pregnancy


As Zoe progressed through her pregnancy, and sizing up bigger than a balloon, I had to be there to assist her in her daily housework amongst other things.

I was there for her for whatever she needed, bought her food she was craving and massaged her when she was aching. A shoulder to cry on when she was hormonal, a person to vent to, and a person to love her and call her beautiful when she felt ugly.

I wasn’t going to half-ass this Dad thing. I was serious about it and I take full responsibility for my decisions and actions! This meant taking care of the woman who was going to be bringing our baby into this world.

Throughout the pregnancy I also wished to bond with baby despite her being inside Zoe’s belly. I used to talk to baby and sing to her, and if I was lucky enough, she’d kick and move about for me.


Labour


The day came when we were to finally meet our little baby in person. It seemed like a long while inside the hospital, but when things got moving, they certainly got moving!

The birthing pool was set up, and Zoe was inside. She was going through a lot of pain (as you do when you’re pushing a giant melon-sized human through your privates!).

I didn’t like seeing her in pain, it made me very emotional. I knew I had to continue to hold her hand through this. She was screaming at me, tears streaming down her eyes and gripping onto me, slowly dragging me into the water with her.

When I came up for air again, baby was almost here. The midwife checked. Not long left. Pushing, pushing, pushing, then swoosh, out she came! Baby was here, swimming out into the pool. Jet-black hair and looking healthy. The midwife collected her from the pool.

How beautiful she was! I can’t fathom the feelings I felt that day when I saw her for the first time.

‘AURORA, she’s called Aurora.’ Zoe revealed to the midwife.

We migrated over to the bed. Zoe was sore but she was doing okay. Aurora was handed over to us. We had a closer look at her. She was perfect, no doubt about that at all.

I WAS A DADDY!


If you wish to read more about the birth of Aurora, you can check out her birth story here.


 

Even today, she’s grown to be such a loving, beautiful, funny, intelligent little girl and we will continue to love her forever! Our Aurora, our display of love for one another, never to be broken, forever and always!

 

If you liked this blog post, you can check out more daddy blogs here!

 

-Liam

Faiths Frantic Antics

Faith’s been up to some mischief, and it’s left her little brother in ruins. Find more about it here!

The children came home from their Dad’s a week last Monday after their half-term break away in Wales.

I spent most of the day running around the house getting everything spotless right before a stampede of wild brutes invaded my home hammering through the front door along with 2 special visitors (their Granddad and Auntie).

I must admit I missed my crazy, noisy kids but also enjoyed the solitude and peace of just having my two youngest children to contend with – 3 if I count my partner (shh, don’t tell him I said that!).

I made sure I had some wine left in the fridge just in case there were any mishaps along the way.

I was expecting a demeanour of bad behaviour after I received a lovely phone call on the Sunday night, the day before the kids returned from being with their Dad.

It went a bit like this:

Mr D:Faith has done something you’re not going to be happy about.’

Me: ‘OK that doesn’t sound reassuring. What’s happened?’

Mr D:Wyatt just ran in crying….. Faith cut his hair.’

Me:What! How bad is it?’

Mr D: ‘He’s got a bald spot on the top of his head!’


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My darling daughter expressed her love for hair dressing for a short while and sliced what he seemed to describe as a trench into her brothers hair. A BLOODY BALD SPOT. As I sat in disbelief after this phone call, I thought surely it couldn’t be that bad, right?

When he returned home and gave me a cuddle, I saw there was no way of fixing his hair (believe me I tried). The only way I could conceivably fix it was to give him a skin head, but there was no way I wanted to give him one of those – I couldn’t bring myself to do it.

I dare not think what the other kids in school say to him about it.


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His hair a week after the incident – still visible

When I spoke to Faith about why she did this, she confessed that Wyatt wanted it done. I had two conflicting stories emanating from both of them. I guess I’ll never know which one is telling the truth.

On the brighter side, at least Faith knows what she wants to be when she’s older. She may need some extra practice though, and not to use her little brother as a experiment along the way.

 

If you liked this blog post, you can check out similar blog posts here!

 

-Zoe

A Day Out In The Park With The Monkeys

Enjoying the sunshine on a lovely weekend at the park!

The kids woke up at silly o’clock on Sunday morning (OMG WHY!?), but on every school day it’s completely different – they like to sleep in and procrastinate.

They woke up full of energy like they’ve been on a sugar high the night before with a shot of coffee prior to entering my bedroom.

This is just how they wake up in the morning. I wish I had that much energy first thing in the morning! I look just like a sloth crawling out of bed!

We got ourselves dressed ready to start the day. The noise of the boisterous kids shouting at each other as they played tag or hide and seek – the thundering sound resounded through the house as we contained ourselves in our bedroom.

Liam and I glanced at each other thinking of ways we could burn their energy off without them destroying the house along the way.

We thought we’d take them to the park. This is never a simple task of simply getting dressed and leaving the house though – it’s more of

Mummy I can’t find my socks.’

‘I want my hat!’

‘Can I take my teddy?’

Aurora needs juice or her bum changed and Kiiara needs feeding well before we leave.

Then it’s time for Liam and I to get ready to leave.

It’s a mad dash to leave the house before one of them decides they need the toilet or they have forgotten something. We spent most of the morning looking for Wyatt’s ‘ribbet‘ (his new favourite toy frog).

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He had a major meltdown because Faith threw it and he couldn’t find it, and he was adamant he wanted to take it to the park with him.

Liam was looking all around the house for it but no sign until I spotted it right next to our bin in the kitchen. I’ve never seen Wyatt run so quick! He darted for the frog and shouted ‘yay ribbet!’.

Time For The Park


Finally it was time to get out the house. It felt like an eternity before we managed to step out the door (freedom!)

It was actually a really nice day but fairly chilly. The kids seemed to be happy they were out enjoying themselves, which is always nice to see. They ran all the way to the park still as hyperactive as they were before, ready to burn off all their energy (that’s what we were hoping for anyway).

Aurora had screamed with excitement as she saw a doggy along the way. I like family days out, even if it is just a stroll into the park. It certainly feels good to get out and about!

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We finally arrived at the park and Faith chose to play on the seesaw straight away. Wyatt was on the assault course so I had to be the one on the other end of the seesaw. I felt like a kid again – it was a lot of fun to be able to mess around and not be so grown up for the afternoon.

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The older two, after a while decided they wanted to go and explore the park themselves, so they went off together.

Whilst they were doing that, I tried getting Aurora onto a slide and soon after a swing. After a few pushes on the swing she didn’t like it and would much rather just run around, with me of course having to chase her so she didn’t go too far. Toddlers can definitely run when they want to get away from you!

We spent about an hour at the park before Kiiara needed feeding again (No way was I getting my boobs out – it was still chilly outside!).

We trekked off to the shop to get a few bits, and to get the children some chocolate for behaving. I of course got some for myself too!

On the way home the older two had a race. It seemed they still have a lot of energy to burn. We were hoping it would of knackered them out but that never seems to happen (some kind of magic at work here, must be).

We arrived home and I went over their homework with them as they scoffed their chocolate. Liam prepared a lovely roast dinner for us all to eat later that afternoon. All in all we had a fun – a nice relaxing Sunday (the older two were actually getting along for once, bonus!).

 

If you have any stories about your weekend with your little monkeys, I’d love to hear what you have been up to! 

 

If you liked this blog post, you can check out similar blog posts here!

 

-Zoe

Basics Of Toddler Safety

It’s VERY important to ensure your toddler is safe in your home. Here’s a break-down of safety features you could install in your house today to create a safe environment for them!

When you have a baby, safety measures have to be put in place to prevent danger and harm to them.

The last thing you want after 9 months of pregnancy and going through all the pain of labour is not caring after your baby enough to avoid common preventable dangers.

Here’s a few examples of ways you can avoid them:

  • Not to leave them unattended on a raised surface in case they roll.
  • Always lie them at the foot of the cot to avoid them wriggling underneath their blankets.
  • Lie them on their backs.
  • Try not to let them overheat or get too cold.

When they hit toddler stage there is so much more to think about when safety is involved.

Stairs, blinds, corners of tables, cupboards, medicine cabinets, fire places and slipping in the bath tub.

The list is never ending but so long as you cover the basics and always keep a close eye on your toddler, they should be fine!

I didn’t realise how many dangers were in a house until I had to toddler proof it. Even little toys my older two play with have to be kept out of reach.

Their safety is your main concern until they are old enough to look after themselves. When they’re toddlers, going out to get all these safety products is a wise idea in order to toddler-proof your house (I swear some things are adult proof too!).

We brought some adhesive cupboard locks for our previous house to stop Aurora from going through all the cupboards and emptying them, but she learnt how to pull them off (smart girl, but damn, what now?).

Most recently in our new house, we’ve had these cupboard locks fitted that require you to use a plastic key to open. They seem quite good and its certainly done a better job than the other ones.

Here’s a list of other safety products you could look at to toddler-proof your house:

  • Stair Gates for both top and bottom of the stairs (avoid using gates with a bar along the bottom at the top of the stairs as this is a trip hazard).

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  • Cupboard Locks – ideal to stop toddlers from going underneath the sink where all your chemical products are – ones requiring a key seem to be very effective and prevents any gaps when opening a cupboard – useful to stop trapped fingers.

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  • Draw Cord Winders – these are used for blinds with low cords to prevent strangulation.

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  • Fire Guards – self explanatory.
  • Corner Cushions – used for the corners of sharp edges on things like tables, work surfaces, drawers etc.

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  • Foam Pipe Insulation – A DIY edge guarding to cushion anything with a blunt edge your toddler may play around – very similar to what you’d find in a play centre.
  • Door Cushions – To stop your child from trapping their fingers in doors.
  • Window Safety Catches – Prevents your children from falling out of the window.
  • Most importantly, just simply keeping an eye on your toddler at all times!

It’s no use having these safety products if you or your other kids don’t use them accordingly. My other two like to keep stair gates open very often, and I need to remind them constantly about closing them in case Aurora wants to venture up the stairs.

Other safety products, though not limited to the house could include car seats/ booster seats. Just making sure they are correctly installed and safety belts are secured properly can save your child’s life if you ever did have an accident in the car.

Many of these products can be bought cheaply from any hardware or home store, so there’s no excuses. It’s an investment that could save you and your toddler trips to the hospital!

 

If there’s a safety feature I may not have included in this post that you wish to share, please feel free to drop it in the comments section below! 

 

If you liked this blog post, you can check out similar blog posts here!

 

 

-Zoe

How To Deal With An Over-Tired Child

Toddlers and children can be difficult at the best of times. When they’re over-tired, they soon become wretched demonic creatures keen to find every possible way of not going to sleep. We talk about this and more in today’s latest blog post!

CRYING, CLINGY, SCREAMING and MAJOR TANTRUMS. Yes, I am talking about dealing with your toddler when they are over-tired.

I’m guessing most of you have had this happen, but if not, you may have this all to come!

Aurora is usually a happy child. She can quite easily amuse herself but when she becomes tired, its like all hell breaks loose and she goes all demonic on us. I wait for her head to literally rotate 360 degrees.

When toddlers become over-tired they don’t have a clue what they want to do with themselves (pick me up, put me down, I want juice, throw juice, cry for juice back). That’s generally how it goes with Aurora. Almost like walking on egg shell’s – this little human screams at you for absolutely no reason at all! What did I do!? 


Getting Them For A Nap

Have you ever found getting a toddler for a nap easy? I’m quite lucky in this department  as Aurora will nap in her cot without any problems, but it never used to be this way.

This girl could scream. It sounded like I was actually torturing the poor girl. Instead Mummy was just laying her down in her cot hoping she’d conk out to sleep.

She wouldn’t give in – constantly screaming. In the end I would give in and take her back downstairs, whilst she continues acting like a head spinning demonic creature so to speak.

I didn’t realise how hard it was to get a child to sleep. I know if I had the chance I’d take that nap myself.


Dealing With An Over-Tired Child

Sometimes it can be a handful, and to-be-honest quite stressful when our little ones are over-tired and refuse to get some sleep. Here’s a few things tried and tested that I’ve found seem to work when dealing with demonic Aurora when she just wont nap:

  • Remain Calm (silently munching chocolate tends to calm my nerves).
  • Distraction is definitely key! Finding something that will take their mind away from being tired – usually asking them to fetch a toy, but could be anything.
  • Try to make them laugh (though tickling doesn’t always work. Can make them worse) – pulling funny faces and other similar expressions tend to work well!
  • Extra cuddles always helps too.
  • Last but not least, music! (this girl loves to dance). Find a song they love and blast it out!

To be honest its not only toddlers who seem to get moody when they’re over-tired. Faith and Wyatt can be a handful just as much, but they act differently to Aurora.

Faith just tends to cry at everything and seeing as Faith is a tomboy, she gets overly sensitive when she’s tired.

  • For example: Last night Aurora refused to go to sleep straight away. Faith was not happy about this (they currently share a room). She grew very frustrated and upset, and had advanced to shout at her to get some sleep. This was unlike her as she’d normally fall asleep without reluctance.

Wyatt on the other hand is completely different again. He gets angry and answers back, and becomes very very clumsy.

I recall when he was 1 year old he fell asleep standing up against the sofa (that boy could sleep anywhere given the chance).

Dealing with those grumpy kids all at once is certainly challenging. For my oldest two, putting a DVD on and wrapping themselves inside a blanket on the sofa usually helps, but soon rejuvenates their energy enough to turn back into little tornadoes again.

 

If you have any stories you wish to share of your experiences with your over-tired toddlers or children, or just any tips on how you deal with them, feel free to drop a comment in the comments section below.

 

If you liked this blog post, you can check out similar blog posts here!

 

-Zoe

 

 

Packs a Punch – Energy Drinks & Our Health

Running low on energy and you still have to pick the kids up from school? How about drinking an energy drink? Would that help? Perhaps. Lets find out about the benefits and health issues linked to the consumption of energy drinks in today’s post here!

Disclosure: This is not a sponsored post, nor does this reflect the views or opinions of any energy drink brand mentioned in this post below. My views are my own and with some research, have outlined some facts from the energy drinks and other sources themselves.

 

A lot of people, including myself and various parents I know, drink energy drinks. It’s a common drink nowadays and it’s reaped with benefits.

It’s a drink some parents may consider an energy booster for their morning routines with the kids and to speed on through with the housework. It can also be handy for the drained Daddy in the mornings after having spent most of last night running up and down the stairs to make bottles for their newborn.

They can come in a range of flavours to tickle your fancy.

  • blueberry,
  • raspberry,
  • cherry,
  • tropical,
  • fruit punch and more.

All with the added effect of boosting your energy for that important meeting, long drive or late night. Sounds like a winner to me! Although………..

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..on the flip side, there has been controversy over energy drinks and has been given a bad name. More so because of the high sugar and caffeine content. A lot of teenagers and young adults are subject to consuming drinks like this and have been advised that it is in fact bad for your health. I suppose it doesn’t help when the price of these high energy content drinks are ridiculously low either.

Some also believed ‘Monster Energy‘ drinks were linked to the devil itself – from the striking three clawed logo, the demon symbol within the Monster wording and simply the slogan ‘Unleash the Beast‘ indicated this was the drink of Satan.

I completely disagree, and believe this is a clever marketing strategy to evoke consumers to choose their drink over their competitors because it emits a bad boy/girl feeling when drinking one. Everyone wants to feel like a bad-ass. Just take my money Monster! 

Many of the energy drinks on the market contain ingredients such as Taurine, Ginseng, L-Carnitine, and B-Vitamins (these include Niacin (Vit B3), Vitamin B6 and Vitamin B12). Niacin is good for general health and can help the digestive system, skin and nervous system. Taurine promotes cardiovascular health, insulin sensitivity, electrolyte balance as well as many other benefits.

Though it’s okay to drink in moderate servings, it may not be ideal to drink in excessive proportions as this may cause problems internally, such as liver damage/ failure, heart attacks and even death.

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I used to know someone who drank Monster energy drinks in excess of more than 12 500ml cans per day, and was later advised in hospital that if she continued drinking them it could evidently result in her death. Not something that anyone wants to hear really, especially if its a friend of yours, but just be wary of the pros and cons of drinking them.

They are in fact an energy-boosting drink and have a sole purpose to energise you for the day ahead. One is usually enough, and is unlike a drink of juice or water that you may drink more often throughout the day.

As similar to sugar, it can temporarily boost your energy for a period of time (like a sugar high) and drop you back down dramatically just shortly after. It’s usually best to consume with a balanced diet so that this side-effect is reduced.

Energy Drinks & Sports


Energy drink brands are well known for sponsoring extreme sports.

Red Bull is known for sponsoring motor racing, snow-boarding, sky diving, and just about anything extreme! They promote well-being and a can-do attitude to even the most riskiest of adventures – almost makes you feel as if you can just go out and do it all for yourself!

As a parent, I use it to boost my energy for the sake of running around tidying up after the kids and to give me a creative ‘mind’ boost.

My partner Zoe does not have any (she probably needs it in the mornings sometimes though) because she is currently breastfeeding, and its also advised not to consume any if you are pregnant either as it can be harmful for baby (frankly i’d be afraid in case baby comes out looking like an alien, or jumps out of the womb hyperactive and runs out of the hospital on its own- would certainly make headlines!).


To Sum It Up:

  • Energy drinks are a great source of temporary energy to help get through the day – or like me, energy to tidy up after the kids all the time.
  • They can come in a variety of fruity flavours.
  • It’s been known to be bad for your health due to high sugar and caffeine content (though they claim to have reduced that with No Added Sugar alternatives).
  • It’s very cheap and can be picked up from just about anywhere.
  • Too much consumption can lead to liver failure or even DEATH!
  • Not to be consumed when pregnant or breastfeeding.
  • Energy brands are well-known nowadays for sponsoring extreme sports.

 

If you would like to share your thoughts on energy drinks, please feel free to drop a comment in the comments section below! 

 

If you liked this blog post, you can check out more daddy blogs here!

 

-Liam

Injection Protection

Taking your baby for their injections for the first time is petrifying and it can be very emotional for us Mummies. In today’s post I go into detail about the immunisations here in the UK – side effects, controversy, refusal and more.. Check it out here!

Having a baby is a blessing whether planned or not, but there is one thing that I really dislike my babies having after they’re born – their immunisations!

Not because I disagree with them, but because of inflicting pain upon them. They are important for their health and well-being but I feel terribly guilty when I have to hold my little baba’s in my arms and listen to them scream as tears trickle from their eyes. Despite having done it four times now, I still break down every time.

Kiiara has not long had her 8 week injections and I’m already not looking forward to her next lot. She was okay after her jabs with the help of Calpol. She didn’t want to be put down though. Could have been something to do with her sore legs, but she wasn’t her usual self.

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It’s not a nice thing having immunisations. It took Kiiara at least 2 days to recover fully (clingy doesn’t cover it).

Even though I permitted to have most of the injections, I was reluctant for her to have the Rota Virus vaccine (which is to prevent sickness and diarrhoea) – I had my reasons.

When Aurora had her immunisations, including the Rota Virus vaccine, she had an allergic reaction and was screaming constantly, and was profusely dribbling from her mouth.

Nothing would settle her, so we made a decision not to allow our future kids to have it in case it affected them the same way.

This vaccine wasn’t brought into the UK until 2012, so Faith and Wyatt didn’t have it either and they all seem perfectly fine (Okay even I laughed at that, but I was talking about their general health).

New vaccines have been brought in over the past few years such as the whooping cough vaccine. Admittedly I was very weary over this as I didn’t have it with my older two. I’m the type of person who doesn’t like to take medication unless completely necessary.

With this in mind I didn’t have the whooping cough vaccine whilst I was pregnant with both Aurora and Kiiara. I know of some people who have had it and have been perfectly fine. I’m just stuck in my ways and are very cautious.


Bashing The Anti-Vaccinators

I’ve seen on Facebook just recently a little boy had a bad reaction to having his immunisations and is now subject to seizures because of them. Whether they were the cause or not, I honestly think the parents have the right to decide whether they get their children vaccinated or not.

There is a lot of anti-vaccinators who get abuse from not allowing their children to have them done, but from my point-of-view they have their own beliefs/ reasons and concerns why they don’t want their children having them in the first place, it doesn’t make them bad parents.

I make sure I get them done, but in my opinion parents know best when it comes to their own children, so it shouldn’t be forced upon them if they refuse.

There has been some conflicting research on immunisations – some connecting it to Autism in children. I don’t think this will ever be proven. I believe some children react differently to immunisations than others, and perhaps may possibly be a cause or a contributor in some way.

In my experience I haven’t had any problems consenting the girls to have them, other than sore legs and plenty of crying. As you may have read on one of my older posts, Wyatt has learning difficulties (you can read that post here).

I am almost certain that has something to do with genetics (from his Dads side) and was simply born with them – nothing to do with the injections.


Differences Between England And Wales

Newborn checks are very different between England and Wales. When I had Aurora back in Wales, within 24 hours of her birth they performed an EON check (which they check baby’s heart, hips, eyes, head & more) to make sure everything had developed properly pre and post birth. If everything is fine, then no more needs to be done.

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Whereas in England, they have this check twice – When they are newborn, and again at 6 weeks old. There are other procedures that vary between these countries too, but I won’t go into those today.


Things To Remember For An Immunisation Appointment

If you are anything like me, there is always something that slips from my mind as I am to attend an appointment, so I’ve written a short list of things to take with you just in case.

  • Make sure you remember to take the baby (can’t attend the appointment without the baby!)
  • Your child’s red book (might be different internationally, but we need this in the UK – I forgot it in my last appointment)
  • Calpol (either give beforehand or take with you for baby to ingest after the injections)
  • Don’t forget the extra cuddles!
  • And tissues for Mummy (I could have used some for the last appointment)

 

There’s 3 more weeks left until Kiiara is due for her next set of immunisations, which I’m not looking forward to, so I am enjoying the peaceful intermission before she is poked and prodded with needles once again.

No matter your opinion about vaccinating your children, remember that we’re all going through the same thing and we are all doing what we believe is to be the best for our children no matter what!

 

If you have any experiences with immunisations with your children that you would like to share, please feel free to let us know in the comments section below!

 

 

If you liked this blog post, you can check out similar blog posts here!

A Visit From Someone Special!

A best friend is someone who is always there for you through thick and thin, the good times and the bad. Today’s blog post is dedicated to my best friend and what it means to have someone like that in your life. Check it out here!

My best friend came to visit yesterday, I was so excited. I felt like a giddy teenager. She lives quite far away from me so its a very rare instance that she visits, as we both have our own lives and children to contend with too.

The last time I had seen her was the day of my Dads funeral. She had travelled miles just to be there for me and it meant so much because we hadn’t seen each other in years.


How We Met

Staci and I met in high school. It was our first day at a new school. I was quite shy at 12 so I didn’t really speak much. I reminisce that day very clearly. She approached me and the first thing she did was make funny noises in my face – it freaked me right out! I wouldn’t say that’s a normal thing to do to introduce yourself, but she wasn’t normal.

I didn’t know this girl before this peculiar act, but somehow I knew this ‘weirdo’ was going to become my best friend.

Whilst growing up we got ourselves into so much mischief together (my golden years). Skiving school, winding others up, always getting into trouble with the teachers, the list could go on but i’ll spare you the details.

We were inseparable. There wasn’t one day we wouldn’t be together.

Zoe and Staci against the world!


Heart-Breaking News

After having spent everyday together from the age of 12 until we were 16, Staci broke some news that shattered my perfect bliss. SHE WAS MOVING AWAY!

It was horrible. What was I going to do without my crazy best friend? It just didn’t seem real – this girl meant the world to me and she was leaving!

A few years passed and we had still kept in touch, but not as much as I’d hoped. Children and life in general just seemed to get in the way.

When my Dad passed away we began speaking regularly again, and even now we don’t go one day without speaking. We made a pact not to drift apart again.


A Visit From My Old Best Friend

Staci surprised me last week by announcing she had booked a mini-break down to Liverpool with her partner and son.  I counted down the days until her arrival, and finally just yesterday she turned up!

We went out for a meal with her friend, brother, partner, Dad and son. It was really nice to see her. It was as if we had never been apart – we had reconnected without delay.

Catching up reminiscing about old times, even her brother and Dad remembered. We had only ever fallen out once in 14 years of friendship. It was the first time she had met my youngest daughter.

14 years of being best friends, though life has had its twists and turns, our bond has remained strong as ever after all these years.


Useful Advice For Anyone Who Has a Bestfriend

  • Always make time for them!
  • If you have to, pull a sicky from work to see them if they come far to see you (make sure your boss doesn’t find out, shhhh)
  • Always answer their calls – you never know, it might be important
  • Text as regularly as you can
  • Facebook video is always a good way of communicating, and atleast you can see their crazy faces!
  • Facebook messenger is handy tool to talk to them (and its FREE)
  • Update them with photos of the kids etc. Keep them updated on whats going on in your life and they can update you on theirs too!

This post is dedicated to my best friend Staci. Thank you for being your crazy self and standing by me for all these years, making growing up so enjoyable.

If you have someone special in your life whether best friend or spouse, cherish them – they certainly make life that little bit brighter!

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If you have any stories you would like to share about you and your crazy friends, please feel free to comment in the comments section below.

 

If you liked this blog post, you can check out similar blog posts here!

Blog Bite: I WON SOME CASH!

Bitesize Blog Post – I WON SOME CASH! Click here to find out more!

I received a letter in the post this morning, unsure of what it actually was, and certainly hoping it wasn’t a bill.

Opened it and the first thing I saw was the word ‘CONGRATULATIONS’.

It was a letter from Real People Magazine informing me that I had won their ‘Lost in Moo-sic‘ competition to win £25 cash!

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Though not a life-changing amount, I was still overjoyed with winning this competition. I have been entering for around 6 months now, and up until now haven’t won anything from them.

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It just shows that if you keep at it and continue being consistent entering competitions, you are bound to win sometime! You certainly have better odds than winning the lottery. Hope this motivates you to enter some of your own!

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I have won many things before including Beats Wireless Headphones, a Samsung Smartwatch, and various other gadgets, but as this was my latest one I thought i’d share with you all, and I shall post up any other future wins I may have.

For all that wish to enter competitions themselves, I wish you all GOOD LUCK!

Have a lovely weekend guys!

 

If you liked this blog post, you can check out more daddy blogs here!

 

-Liam