An instrument of medieval torture or miracle cure? Continue reading
I was completely and totally convinced that I was going to go into early labour and consequently ordered my lovely personalised weekender bag (shown below) from Emily and Heath and had everything packed and ready to go ridiculously early, as in, from 26 weeks. It was also one job off the list that I knew would be pretty impossible to achieve closer to arrival date due to a rather time consuming toddler.
Having learnt from round one with Poppy where I didn’t pack things like makeup or nearly enough PJs or baby grows which resulted in mad dashes to the shops by visitors, I would say that with Felix I had absolutely everything I needed making my experience far more pleasant.
Bag for Mummy – Everything I used is marked in blue
A little while ago I posted about my best baby bag find as I wanted to upgrade my totally battered and well loved Baby Beau Ellie bag.
After much deliberation and a visit to the super lovely Eat Sleep Love boutique in London to have a good old snoop at my short list of bags, I decided on the Jem + Bea Beatrice bag, currently available at jemandbea.com, in taupe. I wanted something big enough to fit all the kit required for both toddler (still in nappies) and baby but also be stylish and feel like something that I would usually pick for myself and would be able to use post-baby. It also needed to go with everything and not be season dependant.
Has it lived up to expectations?
Yes and more so! There is ample space for a full day’s worth of kit, so that means several full sized bottles for Felix, a change of clothes for both children, snacks and drink for Poppy, nappies for both plus two packs of wipes, toys galore, medical bag plus all my kit of purse, phone, keys etc.
Features I love
This bag has been seriously well thought out, not only is the lining fabric water resistant ( I discovered this when Poppy’s entire water bottle emptied into the bottom of the bag) but it also has these thoroughly useful features…
I also adore the personalisation option available on the tag. You know I’m a sucker for anything personalised😉
It may seem like a lot of money but this is a bag that will perform it’s duties perfectly and look amazing whilst doing it, what more could you want?🙂
The entire Jem+Bea collection is beautiful and I so so excited by the latest additions to the range in the form of the super cute and handy ‘MAMA‘ pouch in delicious tumbled calf leather with embossed gold lettering and the ‘BABA‘ pouch in wipe-clean nylon with a waterproof lining and topped off with pale yellow printed BABA lettering.
I JUST LOVE THESE AND THIS BRAND!!!
I was hoping that my first post after my little hiatus would be to introduce you to our beautiful baby boy Felix. I’ll still be writing that post very soon, but not today. Today I want to share a reminder to never take these little lives for granted.
Everyone says it but having baby number two really is incredibly different to number one. With Poppy I would actively avoid contact with anyone who I knew was ill and would internally curse someone if they hadn’t pre-warned me that they or their child had a cold before we came into contact with them. The first time Poppy met Felix, when he was a mere six hours old, she sneezed directly on to his face and you know what? I didn’t freak out, I just thought, well this is how it’s going to be buddy, you’ve got to get used to living with a human petri dish. Then Poppy got a really really horrible cold, and before we knew it, my husband had it, then I had it and finally, at four weeks old, poor Felix got it. I could tell he was feeling rotten, of course he was, after all I felt horrific and I was able to take a cocktail of drugs to combat the symptoms. Before long the blocked up stage had hit and he was gasping for breath when I was feeding him and being sick after his feeds as he was swallowing so much mucus. Yuck. I took him to the doctors hoping that they’d say it was ok to give him small doses of Calpol to ease his symptoms but they gave him a good check over and prescribed saline drops to break up the mucus. These seemed to help so the next day we cracked on with daily life, took him to be officially registered and went out for lunch but the whole day he was seriously off his game; crying constantly, barely eating, being sick and only settling when he was being held by me, not at all like my hungry and content little boy. Then when we got home that afternoon he developed a wheeze, barely audible under the rattle of his breath catching phlegm in his throat. Having had childhood asthma I know how alarming it is and how quickly it can become dangerous. So I thought I’d keep an eye on it and take him in to the doctors the next day if it persisted.
Skip forward to 3am the next morning, neither Felix nor I have had any sleep and I’m covered in sick, the wheeze has got a whole lot louder and has been joined by a hacking cough. Time to call in reinforcements in the form of slumbering husband. Whilst he tried to soothe the baby I Googled ‘baby 4 weeks wheeze’ and inevitably found horror stories so decide that I’d definitely take him to the doctors in the morning.
Then I realised he’d changed from his usual lovely pink to a funny pale shade and had developed pink rings around his eyes and all of a sudden I wasn’t happy about waiting until the doctors opened. Thinking they’d probably tell me to wait to take him to the doctors in the morning I called the NHS 111 service.
To my surprise after answering questions (making sure I didn’t leave out any detail about his symptoms) they said that they wanted me to speak to a doctor in the next two hours and that they would arrange for one to call me. Great!
Twenty minutes later at just gone 5am, husband was tucked back up in bed and I was recounting the symptoms to the doctor who, to my surprise (and relief), said they wanted to see him immediately and booked us an appointment at Leicester Royal Infirmary to see an out of hours doctors.
Oh, I was’t expecting a hospital visit I think. Maybe this is slightly more serious than I thought.
So I jumped in the car, leaving the toddler and husband at home in bed, trying my hardest to keep it together and still thinking they’ll take one look at him and tell me I’ve made a fuss over nothing, roll their eyes and send me on my way.
During the consultation the doctor didn’t seem too concerned and muttered about them only observing him if he referred us and he almost sent us on our way until I asked about Felix’s rather deep chest compressions when breathing in that I spotted whilst doing up Felix’s vest. All of a sudden the doctor phoned the children’s ward and we were being sent through.
Once there the nurses ran a series of checking-in observations – weight, how often he’s feeding, wet nappies and oxygen levels etc. Then they checked his oxygen levels again…then they casually said they’d “just leave the monitor on him for while, nothing to worry about. Oh and someone will be through to give you a cup of tea and some toast”. Wow, wasn’t expecting hospitality when we probably wouldn’t even be staying long!
Then the doctor came through to our little side room, checked him over and asked lots of questions about his feeding since he’d been poorly and before I knew it we were very calmly being moved into a bay on the ward with the nurse saying “we’re just going to give him a bit of oxygen as his levels are a bit low, nothing to worry about”.
OK, keep it together Thompson.
They taped the tiniest oxygen tubes to his face and all of a sudden he looked tiny and helpless and I wanted to cry.
Shortly afterwards the nurses, who were all totally lovely, explained that he needed to be taking on more fluids so they were going to put in a feeding tube and asked if I wanted to stay whilst they did it. How could I possibly leave that tiny person just to save my feelings?
Over the next few hours I witnessed my little boy decline and when my husband joined me later that afternoon he was unable to open his eyes fully and was falling in and out of consciousness. Thankfully when he was reaching this point we were in the best place and he was being supported with oxygen and food otherwise I really dread to think what would have happened.
The doctors were able to diagnose him really quickly and discovered that it was Bronchiolitis causing his problems. If you have a toddler then you’ve probably had a run in with it already. Most children will have had it by the time they’re two and it would have just seemed like a nasty cough and cold. Tiny little bodies on the other hand, aren’t able to cope with it like bigger children and need help to keep them going whilst they fight it off.
We ended up staying in for five days whilst the little man got back up to full strength. The first night being on a main ward then they moved us to a private room for the rest of our stay as they were worried about him picking up other germs as he was so little.
Whilst we were there the level of care was incredible, the nurses and doctors checked him constantly, really listened to my concerns and actually acted on them rather than dismissing me. They brought me food if I was feeding during meal times and made the whole experience as anxiety free as possible for both of us. They even brought him a sensory machine that fixed to the side of the cot and played white noise and did a light show.
Thankfully we are both now home, Felix is almost completely recovered and I’m just about getting over the exhaustion.
So the moral of the story is to never ever ever feel like you’re wasting people’s time and always trust your instincts when it comes to your children. You know them best and you alone will recognise changes that other people might not see. After all, these little people are too precious not to.
My first experience of baby shopping when I was expecting Poppy was, I’m sure, very similar to other expectant parent’s out there. A stressful Saturday afternoon spent hanging around John Lewis in a state of utter confusion. It’s not like we even went in blind, I’d researched for what felt like months but when faced with walls of different products, a husband with an attention span of a hungry toddler and ridiculous crowds we only managed to come away with a changing matt. Don’t judge, it was a stressful afternoon!!
This time around I had heard whispers of an entirely different experience that might actually be enjoyable?! What? Lies, all lies!
Well, after having the pleasure of spending some time with the delightful and uber inspirational Laura Slater on a recent flying visit to London, I can tell you this heaven does exist and it’s called Eat Sleep Love Boutique.
Set up last year after the arrival of baby number two, Laura has created an oasis of calm and style for parent’s to be and new parents with everything you could possibly want for new baby and beyond.
Her product range is to die for and what’s best is that Laura’s been through it all so really knows what products work and what parents really need.
I arranged to meet Laura to have a look at her Jem+Bea changing bag range in the flesh and was secretly hoping to pick Laura’s brain on a few other items I had been umming and arring on. Thankfully Laura really listened to my requirements and was able to advise me on absolutely everything I needed. No confusion, no hassle, no feeling of being rushed, just a feeling of accomplishment by the end of my visit. This really is the way forward!
After much consideration and discussion I ended up ordering the Jem+Bea Beatrice changing bag (with personalisation, yipee!) which you may have seen in my recent changing bag post, an Angel Care baby bath support so that Poppy and new baby can bath at the same time and a Baby Bjorn Carrier one however I could have easily bought the whole shop!!
My absolute favourite items were the truly exquisite hand knitted cashmere and merino wool items from Eat Sleep Love’s own range. Seriously divine.
As I was heading straight on to a concert at the O2 I decided to have everything delivered in a few weeks but you can equally take everything away there and then if you choose.
Very soon there will soon be an online purchasing option so you can take advantage of the Eat Sleep Love loveliness wherever you are in the country. Woohoo! Watch this space!
I literally cannot wait for my goodies to arrive🙂
Seriously, why hasn’t nature perfected a more efficient baby extraction method? Maybe a zip? Or as a friend suggested, grow the baby in a pod in a greenhouse. Slightly Matrix-esque but a hell of a lot more efficient!
When I was expecting baby number one I had a wonderful ‘what will be will be’ attitude towards the birth, as long as baby was healthy then I was very happy to go with the flow. Then came a 36hr labour with back to back baby ending in full extraction team armed with forceps and extensive remodelling of the down below area, followed by three weeks of infections and not being able to sit down for six weeks. Joy of joy.
Honestly I think I could handle the labour again even if this little one is back to back too, I’d just ask for an epidural literally the moment I arrive instead of waiting over 30hrs (seriously, what was I thinking?!).
What scares the be-jesus out of me is the thought of the recovery + toddler. Dealing with the sheer immobility that I was faced with post birth when also faced with carrying/changing/manhandling a very wriggly two year old who is well and truly in the swing of terrible twos and who often requires removal from the path of oncoming traffic whilst mid-tantrum.
Then again, loads of people manage and then go on to have more children so there must be a way of coping or do they all just confine the toddler to a (lockable?) room with Peppa Pig on repeat and a never ending supply of snacks and drinks? I’m seriously considering this. Something else that I’ve seriously been considering is asking for an elective c-section. I know I know, it’s major surgery but at least it’s on your tummy and not your nether regions. This is the level of freak-out that I’ve reached, I’ll literally consider anything.
Anyone have a similar first birth and have a totally dreamy second birth? Pleeeeeeeease say this is the case. It’ll just fly out with no adverse effects to the surrounding area right?😉
I have carried my faithful and wonderful Baby Beau Ellie changing bag with me for pretty much every day of the last two years. This is a love affair that could conceivably continue were it not for my shift in needs that I see happening on the horizon and for the fact that I bought my Ellie second hand from eBay and after two years of further abuse, it really has seen better days.
So onwards and upward!
What I loved about the Baby Beau Ellie was the copious amount of well thought out pockets so any future baby changing bag will have to match this and more as not only will it have to fulfil the needs of a newborn (nappies galore+several outfit changes+muslins etc) it will also have to house the needs of a toddler (nappies+snacks+books/toys/games+sunglasses etc). Sigh. Think I might just give up the search now and resign myself to carrying around my old travelling rucksack… Continue reading
The first day of February deserves some beautiful Spring florals.
And I found just the tonic on a recent trip to Sainsbury’s. How could I resist these seriously fabulous Spring vibes at only £12! Continue reading
I’ve been looking for a nightlight for a while as Poppy usually has her bedroom door propped open with a lamp on the landing to aid in her relocation of her favourite soft toy (Bubby) should she stir. There have been two problems with this, the first is her bedroom is next to the bathroom so as soon as we bang and clatter in there in the evening she would stir. Secondly, our house is seriously freezing, I mean sub-zero, waking up with ice blocks for hands, major refusals to have nappy changes or get changed in general and choruses of “cold, cold cold, cold” when said changes take place, but most of all the poor thing had been waking up as her room couldn’t retain any heat with the door being wide open all the time. Serious parental guilt.
I wanted something that would be in keeping with the rest of the nursery so had hoped to find a bunny or animal themed one but for the life of me I couldn’t find anything other than plastic monstrosities that were usually pretty creepy and any nice ones I did find were horrendously expensive like this £95 notonthehighstreet.com option. Ridiculous!
For a long time for me healthy eating meant enjoying everything in moderation, it wasn’t until I began feeling super unhealthy and lethargic last year that I actually thought about what I was eating and what I was cooking for the family, even more so now being pregnant. Making sure we are all getting enough fruit and veg and finding healthy recipes that we all enjoy has become a bit of a hobby and consequently my recipe book shelf is overflowing with healthy recipe books.
With so many out there to choose from I thought I’d share my experiences to hopefully make your choice a little easier.