Being a mother and what it really means

It’s Mother’s day today. A chance to celebrate the fact that we, as mums, are bloody awesome human beings. Don’t get me wrong, none of us are perfect. I know I’m certainly not. When I first found out I was pregnant with my 1st baby, I had all these (unrealistic) ideas of how I was going to be and act as a mum and how I was going to raise my children. I certainly wasn’t going to be a shouty mum. I absolutely wasn’t going to be one of those mums who let their child play on some sort of electronic device and beige food was strictly band from the table. Only wholesome home cooked food in my kitchen thank you very much! Did that happen? Did it hell.

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t scream at my children from morning till night as they sit googled eyed at the Ipad whilst shoving fish fingers and potato waffles down their necks. But I do have the odd day where I’m a little bit more shouty than I’d like (because if I have to ask Katie to put her shoes on one more time so help me god…) and the Ipad is out whilst Dylan is napping so I can quickly get the hoovering done. I’ve also had days where I’m absolutely knackered and I forgot to take the meat out of the freezer so only chicken nuggets will do. And do you know what?

It’s all good.

We are all doing our best aren’t we!? I know I certainly am. Sure, every day isn’t perfect. Sure, I have days where if I have to listen to one of the children whinge one more time I might stab myself in the eye.

I have days where I go to bed and I could burst in to tears because I’ve felt guilty over counting the minutes down until their bedtime. But all in all, I’m an awesome mum. I love my kids with everything that I am.

I tell them I love them everyday, several times a day. I keep them safe. I smother them in kisses and make them feel important – because they are. I feed them, dress them, play with them. I interact with them and I challenge them. I try to get them to see the world for what it is. I encourage them to ask questions. I embrace the fact that sometimes they want to be different. I nurse them back to health when they are unwell. I wipe their tears when they are upset and I kiss their “ouchies”.

I read to them. I comfort them. I reassure them when they are scared. I teach them right from wrong. I play that game “just one more time” even though we’ve played it a 100 times already. This to me, is what being a mother is. Taking the good with the bad, the giggles and the tears. The endless sleepless nights. The nights where I’ve stood for hours on end rocking them back and forth until they go back to sleep.

It’s not just about giving birth to a child, it’s about the aftermath. The years ahead where your not always perfect but you’ll do. Having days where you beat yourself up and tell yourself you could have tried harder or been more patient. The days where you should have listened a bit more instead of shrugging them off or telling them to be quiet.

We are all in the same boat. I know every single one of you reading this will relate to it somewhere because we are all awesome. We are rocking motherhood and our children love us for it. We aren’t perfect – we’re just mums.

Happy Mother’s day!

 

The Siblings Project (March 2017)

What a month March has been already and we are only on the 15th! We’ve been struck down with illnesses and bugs that even saw Dylan in hospital over the weekend (don’t worry, he’s fine!). One positive thing that has come with March is the spring weather – Hello Daffodils!! Today is especially beautiful and we’ve even been to the park without our coats on! What is it about the sunshine that makes everything instantly better? It’s a natural anti-depressant. Everything looks brighter and the children are happier and I feel more motivated to be productive with my time. Roll on the summer months, they are long awaited.

Dylan is at a funny old age. He turns 18 months old on the 18th March and I feel like it has hit us all hard. I’ve noticed a slight change in the dynamic of my siblings relationship. One minute they are the best of friends, kissing and cuddling and the next minute they are fighting. Well, if we are honest, the fighting is all one sided. Dylan has always been especially fiery but it seems to be more this last month or so as he develops more of an independence. It’s so frustrating for him to not be able to communicate as effectively as everyone else and he is lashing out and having temper tantrums because of it. Katie has been on the receiving end of a lot of these tantrums and often comes to me in tears because he’s hit her or pulled her hair. It’s not something I particularly worry about as it’s just a phase that he’s going through and it hasn’t changed the closeness they have but it can make days quite stressful.

There isn’t a massive age gap between my two but as Dylan gets older and is developing more I can see the age gap closing in. Dylan is able to run, play and interact with Katie a lot more and Katie loves it. It’s like having a live-in play mate. I do have to remind Katie that although Dylan can do a lot more these days there’s also things he can’t do which she is desperate for him to participate in such as climbing trees and jumping off sofas! (Yes, this happens daily. Please don’t judge me haha!)

I’ve took this months pictures on a variety of days. Dylan has been particularly grumpy over the last week due to illness etc so getting a photo of him smiling was almost impossible. I do like the perfect imperfectness of photo’s like these though as they represent real life and that sometimes, no matter how hard you try, you can’t get your bloody child to crack a smile!

Here’s to a sunny, more smiley month!

Motherhood. The good, the bad and the eye bags

It’s 3am and the house is quiet. Everyone’s asleep (or trying to sleep) all except for me and Dylan. It’s the 5th time I’ve had to get up with him since I went to bed at 10pm. I’m not sure what’s unsettling him. I don’t know whether he’s teething, he’s feeling unwell or whether he just wants some company.

What I do know is that I’m the only one at this hour that can comfort him.

As he lays there on my chest, his head rested on my shoulder he instantly relaxes. Whatever was bothering him seems to bother him no longer so long as he’s in my arms. When I think he’s drifted off to sleep I try to gently lay him back in his cot only for him to cry again. It really is exhausting. I never had sleeping issues with my daughter. She was always such a good little sleeper and even now she sleeps 7:30pm-7:30am. I wrote in a post a couple of weeks ago (Dylan – You are 17 months old) that, after 17 long months of wakeful nights, you had finally cracked the sleeping through bit. Well that post came back to bite me on the arse because he’s not slept through since!

What is it about little ones needing you? It’s a mothering battle that I will never win. On one hand I’m at the end of my tether, praying that tonight will be the night he sleeps through and on the other hand I feel an overwhelming sense of love and softness when it’s the still of the night and it’s only us two. Nestled in each other, not making a sound and just enjoying the quiet cuddles. It’s like our own special club. I feel like I’m needed and that I serve a purpose. I remind myself that these moments, however exhausting they are, won’t last forever.

The days without sleep are hard. My patience is short, my energy levels are zapped and I have bags under my eyes big enough to carry the weekly shop in.

But you just cope don’t you?

You do whatever you can to survive and get through the day and do it all again the next night. Because that’s what motherhood, or parenthood, is. It’s surviving. It’s about winging it at every opportunity. You pray to the big man upstairs that tonight will be the night that you get more than a 2 hour stretch of sleep before you have to get up again and when you hear those faint little cry’s (that soon turn it to extra loud wails if your not quick enough!) your heart sinks a little bit. But as soon as you realise that those cry’s were for you and your touch, every little irritated and exhausted feeling goes straight out of the window. That’s motherhood. It’s the good, the bad and the eye bags all rolled in to one and do you know what? I wouldn’t have it any other way! 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What’s in my toddler changing bag

I wrote a blog post a while back about what was in my baby changing bag (What’s in my change bag) and it had quite a lot of interest so I thought I’d do an updated version now Dylan is out of the baby stage and very much in the toddler stage.

What is it about wanting to know what people carry around with them? I personally love it! I love seeing what people have when out and about. It gives me a bit of inspiration and makes me think if I’ve got everything I need. Almost like a visual checklist. I also like “What’s in my handbag” posts from the ladies out there but I don’t know if that’s me bordering on the line of insane. What do you think!? Anyway!…

When babies become toddlers, it is a relief to all mums out there that you don’t need to carry around with you the whole bumph that comes with having a baby.

I decided that because I didn’t need as much stuff, I didn’t need the large change bag that I had (although I loved it) So I purchased this dinosaur print from Cath Kidston. I am a HUGE Cath Kidston fan and I have a lot of her bags so I felt this one was perfect. It had Dinosaurs on to please Dylan and a Cath Kidston label to please me. Everyone’s a winner! Except probably, my husband. God bless him. He doesn’t feel the Cath Kidston love the way I do. Nevertheless, he still wears it when out and about with our son.

So what’s in my changing bag?

  1. Nappies. I usually take 3 out with me. Three being the magic number and all. I’m never out long enough to use all 3 so I’ve never had a “no nappy” crisis.
  2. Wipes. Used for cleaning everything but the kitchen sink. Unlike nappies, I have to be brand specific with these as for some reason Dylan has a reaction to all wipes except Pampers sensitive and Mamia (Aldi) sensitive wipes.
  3. Tissues. For those snotty, snotty noses. I can’t bare a green encrusted nose.
  4. A Change of clothes. I like to keep a spare pair of trousers and pants for Katie in the bag too in case of any accidents.
  5. A Change mat. A Cath Kidston change mat which one of my friends kindly gave me.
  6. Juice and snacks. Always important with Children. I try to keep healthy snacks in my bag but sometimes only a milky bar will do.
  7. A toy. Used purely as a distraction tool. The toys changes from week to week as does Dylan’s interests. This week it’s lightening Mcqueen.
  8. A dummy. For nap times and tantrums.
  9.  My purse and phone. I don’t carry my own bag it drives me nuts having to lug two bags around (3 if Katie’s at nursery and has her nursery bag) So I just put my purse and phone in to the change bag. Sometimes I carry a lipstick too but if we’re being honest, I’m never one to remember to top my lippy up during the day anyway so it’s sometimes a pointless product.

That’s it in my changing bag. The contents has dwindled dramatically from the baby days. I hate it when your baby isn’t your baby  anymore but I am glad when you don’t have to be armed with all the products that going out with a baby entails.

What do you keep in your changing bag? Do I carry more or less than you?

I’d love to hear from you!

 

 

 

Dylan – You are 17 months old (A letter to my son)

My Darling Dylan you are now 17 months old,

It’s just a quick one. When I wrote your 16 month update (Dylan-you are 16 months old) I said that I wouldn’t write to you every month after that.

But, you’ve had a couple of changes which I feel you need to know about.

Firstly, you’ve slept through the night! And not just one night but every night for a whole week! Halleluiah!  I’m wondering if this is finally the turning point in your sleeping pattern. (It’s only took 17 months!) I’m starting to feel like a new woman. I was starting to think this day would never come! It’s amazing what a full nights sleep does for everyone. Including you.

Secondly, we’ve had a bit of a turn around at the dinner table too. I wrote in your 16 month update that you were particularly fussy when it came to eating your food at teatime but over the last couple of weeks we’ve changed you from a high chair to a booster seat so you can sit at the table properly with us and you’ve started to use a fork to feed yourself with and it’s made such a difference! Not all the time, but enough for meal times not to be as stressful as they were. It’s so lovely to watch you try and use a fork. You try to be so independent. The look on you face when you manage to put a piece of food from the fork in to your mouth is utter triumph. Your such a clever little thing.

Your walking has improved vastly over the last week and you are practically running everywhere now. You have such speed behind you I’m forever telling you to slow down. It goes without saying that you’ve also had quite a few bumps to the head since you developed the speed too. Silly little Dylan, you’ll never learn as I rub and kiss it better.

I said it was just a quick letter this month Dylan and I meant it. I’ll leave it here. Your a bit under the weather today and Daddy and I are hoping that you haven’t caught the Chicken Pox from your sister. I’m off to go and give you a cuddle.

Keep up the good work Darling.

We love you.