I'm hoping someone will read this and explain things to me. I currently use a free template and write my posts using blogger. Howvever with the new year coming up and Albie being born I was looking into mixing things up a little. Has anyone changed over to Wordpress from blogger? What's the best? I'm also thinking of purchasing a template design from etsy, does anyone have experience of this?
I delegated all control to Mr. C to do with the baby monitor, when I say all control I mean he could give ideas and I could tell him why they weren't for us! Ooops. However I did mention to one of our good friends that I was looking into the Angelcare Movement and Sound Monitor. Mr.C was very relieved when our friend generously purchased this monitor for my Baby Shower present, I have been so impressed with this monitor so I know I made the right choice and wanted to let you know all about it if you are thinking of buying one.
I know a lot of people think that these type of sensor monitors make you paranoid and anxious however I believe that with a reliable one they really help to ease that desire to prod and check baby every ten minutes!! As I had a c-section I was in hospital for two nights, this really helped me to get over a lot of the anxiety, so when we did get home I didn't immediately set up the monitor. We waited for a couple of weeks when we started putting Albie upstairs in the evenings. I did attempt to try and set this up whilst pregnant, this did not go down well at all. In fact I think I may have cried and screamed, I tried reading the instructions and it just wasn't sinking in, Mr. C is amazing with DIY and can build and fix anything however, he struggles with Sky + and only last year gave my email address to someone starting it with www. (LOOOL) so as you can imagine technology is not his thing, he has slightly improved and now has his own email address and can use ebay very well, but for this mission it looked like I was on my own.
When we did get round to setting it up, it was very much a joint effort, I managed all the settings and Mr.C managed the setting up, we did have to tear a small hole in the moses basket lining so we could thread the wire through from the sensor pad. You will also need a piece of flat wood a little bigger than the sensor pad to ensure a flat surface.
As you can see from the photo above the monitor comes in three parts, the pad, nursey unit and the parent unit. Setting up involves placing the pad in the middle of the cot or moses basket- We use a sleeping bag for Albie, but if we were using blankets we would be placing him feet to bottom, so I would have placed the pad underneath where he would have been in that position (in the cot that is, We placed it in the middle of the Moses Basket) The sensor pad is then connected to the nursery unit, there is the another wire used to plug the nursery unit in. The sensitivity is already set so there is no need to change that on the nursery unit unless you feel the need to. It is vital you keep all cables away from baby, AngelCare have recently sent out cable covers to users of these monitors, however Albie is in no way able to get near the cables, and I think when he is older and crawling around, he will be loud enough for us to hear him cry without use of a monitor. However a free cord cover kit is available direct from Angelcare: email them at firstname.lastname@example.org with your full name and address or call 08450091789.
The parent unit can then be placed wherever you would like it, ideally near a plug socket so you can charge the unit easily.
There are so many features on this monitor and it's really down to you which ones you chose to use.
Parent unit settings
The side bar enables you to see the volume and also the sensitivity of the microphone.
The Microphone setting is used to set the sensitivity of the microphone, you can also set this to continuous sound so you can hear every noise or you can set it to re-active meaning it will only switch on when it picks of a sound, usually the baby, I do find if we have this on high sensitivity that it will pick on doors closing downstairs, also when it is set on re-active the first second of noise usually isn't picked up.
The satellite setting is accessed to turn on or off the 'out of range' alert.
Temperature settings enable you to set an alarm if the temperature of the nursery falls or rises above a certain temp.
The pendulum image you can see is used for the 'tic feature' this constantly moves to ensure you all is ok, you are also able to turn on a constant 'tic' sound. We don't use the sound.
The speaking face is quite self explanatory, this is the sound feature. We always have this on
The waves on the right of the screen are used to access the movement feature, we always have this on too.
You can also see a little wavy line and alarm bell next to the temperature, this show that both the sound alarm and vibrate are on. You can chose to have either or both on.
Other features include a hold option- perfect for night feeds, always a good idea to do this before lifting baby up, unless you want to wake up your partner with a frightening alarm sound. You can also put the monitor on mute for 2 minutes, I tend to use this if Albie has woken in the night for a little moan and is trying to get himself back to sleep, he very rarely cries so if he does during this two minutes I can hear him through the wall, it just enables me to see if he will settle himself in those two minutes, which he always does. There is also a nightlight, which we always have on and a thermometer, which is so handy. The battery also lasts really well !
I have been really impressed with this monitor so would recommend it to any new parents, the only feature I would like to to have is maybe a 2 way sound system, so you could let baby know you were still there with a couple of reassuring 'shhhhhh's'. We also had a a slight problem with the transmission as we placed the parent unit next to the wall we share with neighbours and we kept hearing a a fuzzy noise every two minutes, we worked out it must be getting picked up from the neighbours mobile phone, all we had to do was change the channel on the parent unit and we didn't hear anymore interference.
I really would encourage you to read all the instructions before attempting to set this up, you will also want to test the pad is working well before relying on it. I would also ask you to have a look at the NHS website for guidance on resuscitation, it is such an awful situation to think about however it's best to be prepared and well informed.
I hope this helped you come to a decision if you were considering this monitor. Please do feel free to get in touch and ask any questions, I'll do my best to answer them for you!
One of the things I love to do to relax once Albie is in the land of nod is to have a steaming hot bath. It's so nice to be able to have a hot bath, during pregnancy hot baths are to be avoided so I really missed them over the 9 months. My usual bath oil is Jo Malone Pomegranate noir, however it's a bit pricey so will be a one off birthday or christmas treat, so when I was sent the delarom bath oil from the Urban Retreat Beautique, I couldn't wait for Albies bed time so I could draw a bath and light some candles.
The Urban Retreat Boutique is a luxurious online beauty retailer, you can take a look at the amazing range of products here- http://www.urbanretreat.co.uk/beautique. They even stock things for babies! It's you are stuck for christmas present ideas take a look! Don't blame me when you fill up your online basket :) the have also just started selling my favourite perfume- Tom Ford Black Orchid!
The Delarom bath oil is gorgeously presented in a brown glass bottle (not even jo malone can stretch to glass)
I add a capful of the oil to my bath and relax in the wonderful aromatherapy aroma, ingredients include lemon, cypress and lavender, all adding to the relaxing effect. Not only does the oil leave your body feeling silking soft and smelling a-mazing, the mixture of ingredients help the elasticity of the skin which in turn should help with limiting the appearance of stretch marks ! Now it's a bit late for me on that front but I will see if the couple I have from pregnancy improve. The oil can also be used in the shower rubbed over the body or even as a massage oil, I haven't quite talked Mr.C into this one yet, to be fair by the time we reach bed the only thing going on in there is sleeping !! Ahhh the life of new first time parents.
This product isn't really on the lower end of the price scale however it's a lovely treat and will last sometime so worth the couple of extra pennies.
I say Albies, he Obvioulsy doesn't care what he wears, so most of the presents we have bought him are ones he will enjoy, like toys and books. But if I were to go crazy and buy lots of new clothes (don't panic Mr. C I won't !) these are what I would get.
This is just a vey small selection on what I would love to get Albie. I could be here all day adding things. My favourite shop for boys Autumn/winter without a doubt has to be zara. Albie already got a few bits yesterday from his nanny, I mean Santa!!
We really aren't going mad on gifts for Albie this year, yes it's her first Christmas but I would rather save our money as I am sure this is the last one he won't be able to ask for everything !!
Albie, You are so perfect, these last 8 weeks with you have flown by whilst feeling like you have always been with us! It's crazy! Life has been manic with daddy and I trying to adjust to life with a baby, we love it!
Your favourite thing to do is sleep! Day and night! You are the amazing sleeping baby, all our friends are surprised when they see you awake, and I'm so happy when they do as they can see your gorgeous deep blue eyes! I am pretty sure they will stay blue like mummy and daddy's. Your bed time is currently at 7.30, after your bath and bottle, you sleep all the way to 2am in your Moses basket, you wake for a little snack of about 3oz at this time, you then have a little cuddle with mummy and go back into your basket, where you talk to yourself until you fall asleep, usually about 15-20mins, (well that's when I fall back to sleep anyway.) You used to sleep then all the way to 6am so we would get up and come downstairs, however since the clocks went back you wake me up every morning at 5am thinking its time to start the day, depending on how you look at this time I might give you a couple of oz to get you through till about 7am. Sometimes you go back to sleep sometimes you whinge till I get you up at about 6.30am. You never cry at night ( yet) so I usually leave you to settle yourself back off, you are really good at doing this when you go to bed but not that great during the night.
You absolutely love bath time. You know when it's time for your bath and start getting impatient if we are running late. You love us to splash you and pour water over your little face! We can't wait to take you swimming! The only time you really cry is when we take you out of the bath, and I don't think it's because you are cold as I wrap you up in a huge warm towel! I just think you were busy enjoying yourself splashing and kicking your legs.
Our play times consists of mummy singing to you, mainly songs from Mary Poppins (embarrassingly I already had the soundtrack on my phone!) Your favourite song is 'jolly holiday!' You also like time on your play mat, you mostly just stare at your face in the mirror! You never ever stop moving, just like your daddy you can't sit still (god help me!) just like him the minute you stop moving you fall asleep! (Again) you have tummy time on mummy's bed whilst I'm getting ready for the day, you are a bit indifferent to this at the moment. You sort of just lay there which is better than screaming!
You have grown so big, your last weigh in was at nearly 7 weeks and you weighed 11lb 2oz! We are going to the clinic tomorrow so we will find out what you have gone up to. (Update you are now 11lb 9oz- you are 9 weeks tomorrow at the time of writing) You aren't a massive milk drinker, you take between 4-5oz's every three-four hours during the day. You have really chubby cheeks and a little double chin. Your great nanny says you look like a little Winston Churchill ( I hope by the time you can read this you know who I mean, if not tell mummy and ill get you a history book!!)
Health wise we have had a few obstacles to overcome but nothing too bad. Constipation was causing you a bit if pain but with a quick trip to the docs we sorted that out. You also had yucky baby acne, you still have a little on your cheek but I think that's because you sleep on that side. At the moment we are dealing with a bit of cradle cap, although it doesn't look very nice it doesn't bother you at all, it bothers mummy more, but it's starting to clear up now so should be gone in a week or two.
My baby app says you should be smiling now and you certainly are, you love giving smiles to everyone and it's the most gorgeous smile ever! You are cooing to mummy and daddy all the time too, you are even trying to laugh, you haven't quite got it yet but it won't be long and we can't wait to hear it. You follow mummy and daddy around the room when you are sitting on the sofa, you aren't that interested in following anything else yet, although you do stare at Tilly when she is sitting next to you.
The last thing I say to you every night is 'mummy and daddy love you'
It has been announced that the NHS will be running a trial scheme to encourage new mothers to breastfeed by awarding them shopping vouchers, in an attempt to raise the number of mothers in the UK that breastfeed.
In my opinion this is very poor attempt to'encourge/bribe' mothers into breastfeeding.
Firstly, Breast milk is free, formula is blimin' expensive! Those mothers that chose formula clearly aren't motivated by the financial benefits of breastfeeding, so why would a voucher make any difference ???
Secondly, how is this going to be monitored? There is no way of enduring that the mothers are exclusively breastfeeding.
Thirdly, the vouchers offered can be spent in supermarkets, what's to say that these will not be spent on cigarettes or alcohol. Again, this is impossible to monitor!
Fourth, mother who are suffering financial difficulties that may have never chosen to breastfeed might feel forced into doing so. Will this led to resentment?
Lastly, are we considering mothers that had intended to breastfeed all along , no financial incentive needed. Are they going to feel the need to explain their choice had nothing to do with the vouchers?
I chose not to breastfeed Albie, this is a decision I regret. I believe breast is best for babies health, however after my C-section I didn't feel up to it and the midwives didn't question it, I think if they had I would have been prepared to give it a go, however it's not their fault, I am sure they give up preaching the benefits to mothers. If we do have another baby I will certainly be trying to breastfeed, we have suffered from constipation with Albie and I put that down to his formula. I have also found a number of other uses for breast milk, apparently a couple of drops up a blocked baby nose really help to unblock it, it can also be used to treat baby acne. Don't get me started on the sterilising of bottles last thing at night when you have fallen asleep on the sofa and just want to head to bed!
If the scheme is initiated after the trials, I think I would certainly want to tell people the vouchers had nothing to do with my choice, especially as I chose not to breastfeed my first.
What is your opinion on this? Would it convince you to breastfeed?
(*please excuse grammer and spelling - quickly written post using my iPhone)
I am now 7 weeks post partum! I have heard people say they forgot what's it's like to be pregnant, well I haven't ! Towards the end it was horrible, so if you are pregnant or planning on becoming pregnant then here is what you are in for:
Huge, I mean massively huge swollen feet! Ok not everyone gets this but mine were the biggest things I had ever seen, I'm talking bigger than Kim kardashian squeezed into a givenchy shoe!
This is not the worst photo! I am way too embarrassed to put that on public display. These didn't go straight away, I'm sure my belly shrunk quicker than my feet.
Thick hair isn't always a good thing- I did not need my hair to get any thicker!! Blow drying hair when you aren't pregnant in hot weather is horrible enough but being pregnant during this summer and spending half an hour under a blow dryer is not fun!! I haven't lost it yet either.
Your lady garden can't be seen- keeping things neat down there is a work out in its self! Buy a non steaming mirror!
You may not have a period for nine months but things down there are still happening- I won't explain further but you will see or you will know what I mean!
Talc powder is great for mums too- especially in the summer, it's a must have for your handbag, stops those lovely pregnant thighs from rubbing!
You will find a new appreciation for your not so perfect pre-pregnancy figure!
Not perfect but at least a strap fit around my ankles!
You think you are tired from peeing all night- you ain't seen nothing yet! Wait until your little one joins you!
You learn what SPD stands for- and you want to tell it to F off!!
These are things no one told me to expect!! What did you or are you experiencing that surprised you?
All you mummies out there know that your little ones are always in need of something new, especially in these early months, what with growth spurts, brain development and feeding habits. The expense of having a baby veritably doesn't stop at the big items like the travel system and the nursery furniture. Having a baby certainly isn't cheap, it's a booming business.
I thought it would be helpful to write a post for all the mummies to be on things I have needed to buy since Albie was born, so if you do have any spare cash before getting the less than generous statutory maternity leave then it might be a good idea to get these extra things in.
Albie has been with us 7 weeks this week and I can tell you he never stops needing things.
I had a selection of newborn and up to one month outfits, Albie started I grow out of these so quickly, especially his new born outfits! His one month outfits lasted up till he weighed 10lbs, I got a bit more use out of the footless rompers, however all the all-in-ones just didn't allow his legs to stretch out. Off to the shops we went, and back again and again (oopsy) this has to be my favourite type of baby shopping. His is now wearing size 0-3months, depending on where we buy them some outfits are generous, others he has grown out of already.
When Albie is awake and alert I love to have a little play with him, however he is awake a lot more than his newborn lazy days so I can't occupy him all the time, plus I know overstimulation for babies isn't great. We bought Albie the cutest baby play mat from Mammas and Papas, it's part of the gingerbread man collection. It's perfect for us, it has sides that can be put up or down, this is very handy to stop Tilly (our pug) from getting too close and great for throwing his cuddly toys into. The colours are lovely and bright, Albies favourite thing is the mirror, he loves to examine his face.
According to baby books now is the time that Albs will start to pay attention to objects, at the moment he only follows me or my husband, he doesn't really take interest in other things, but I know this will change very soon and I want him to have something to look at on our strolls into town. I haven't actually bought one yet, I'm just looking for one I like. I really like the Sophie the Giraffe Activity Spiral. The giraffe is so cute.
I also really like the one below, I read that babies really like black and white patterns as it sort of swims in front of their faces.
This one does have mirrors on so I'm leaning towards it. Plus it's in the sale for £13.56, what a bargain, a very precise price but a bargain none the less.
Albie was getting really frustrated when feeding and stopping half way through a feed so I decided to change his teats to stage 2, they had made such a difference. He does dribble a bit more but he seems a lot more satisfied. They don't come cheap, £4 a pair, 8 bottles makes it £16 on bottle teats.
Winter sleeping bag
Albie has been sleeping in his summer 1 tog sleeping bag as our bedroom is quite warm, however temperatures are really starting to drop now so he will be going in a 2.5 tog sleeping bag. I have chosen the one below from vertbaudet.
It's my first purchase from their and at the moment all new customers get £15 off when spending £20, so this only costs £13.99 !!!
Baby bath support
Albie outgrew his baby bath, his legs are so long he was kicking himself up the bath. Little monkey!! I bought our bath support from Kiddicare for about £10, mamas and papas wanted £22 for one nearly the exact same. This has been one of my favourite purchases as he really loves his baths, it's my favourite time of our day, he is so happy splashing around.
Cropped to protect his teenage self!
On top of all this the usual expenses of milk and nappies soon add up. I never stocked up too much on these though as you never know how your baby will get on with a certain brand.
As you can see, it's been non stop shopping (not that I'm complaining, any excuse to buy my baby something is fine with me) so if you have some left over cash after your Xmas shopping then if might be worth getting a few things to cover the next few months not just newborn stage.
I love love getting my little pal dressed everyday, picking out his outfits is so much fun! I thought I would share some of my favourite outfits that Albie has modelled in his first 6 weeks.
This is one of Albies first outfits (eeek can't believe he was this tiny only 6 weeks ago) I love this outfit, it's so cute! I bought this from mothercare, it's party of the little bird range by jools oliver, it comes with a little hat and a matching cotton bag to keep them all together. His little bunny is from the white company, it's so soft, he loves it.
This little baby grow is jasper conran from debenhams, I hadn't even thought of looking in there for clothes but the cutest outfits and they are reasonably priced. Isn't the little vintage racing car just the sweetest thing. Annoying the buttons on this are at the back, so can be tricky to dress tiny babies but it's so worth it.
This was a pressie from Albies Auntie Chelsea. It's from the Myleene Class range at Mothercare. I absolutely love stripes on Albie. I think he really suits them.
This has to be one of my favourites that Albie had worn. It's a gorgeous cowboy print from Cath Kidston. Mr C bought this in size 0-3months, but disappointly Albie has only worn it twice and it's too small!! I didn't wash too well unfortunately. This is certainly in the keep pile of clothes!
Another outfit that makes my heart melt, from mothercare little bird by Jools Oliver. I want to squeeze him so much when he has these pjs on! He will soon grow out if these as his legs are pretty long, I will be getting everyone out of them by pulling his socks up to his knees if need be!!
My little owl !! This was a gift from my cousin! Isn't it scrummy!! It does have a matching hat however my little boy had such a big brain his head is to big!! You can get this from H&M.
Albie is with his Auntie Chelsea and one of his cousins Keira. He is wearing an amazing little romper from the little white company. This was originally one of Albies baby friends, well one of my friends little boys (but they will be friends even by force) it was just too gorgeous to
Put away so I am so glad we have if as Albie looks so precious in it!!
Ahhhh his first big boy outfit. He's growing up way too fast! His jumper is John Lewis, it's so soft and totally worth the extra bit of money ( right hubby?) the little top underneath is a little blue collared long sleeve vest from next. He wore this with some dark blue joggers from Tesco, I don't want to put him in trousers or jeans just yet, I don't think little babies never look comfy in them.
Grey day. His stripey Tshirt is from the little white company, joggers are another tesco special, the cardi is from
Mothercare, you can see but the good is pointed and looks too cute when it's up, he looks like a little elf. His socks were a pressie from our friends, his first pair of converse!! First of many much to daddy's dismay.
Another outfit similar to above, Tshirt is tesco, as are the joggers. The top won't be worn again as the sleeves were too short but he at least had to wear his grandad collar top once.
So there you have it. Albies first few outfits. I can't believe how much he has changed since the first photo. Gosh, it makes me scared how quickly this time has gone.!!
He could totally be the next top baby model. Mason disick you are going to have some stiff competition for best dressed kid!
Everyone parents differently, I believe there is no right way or wrong way, what works for one parent might not work for another, that's not even taking into account what works for baby. I have a lot of friends that are having babies or have had babies so I love finding out how everyone deals with their new babies and picking up pieces of advice and tips from each of them, it's also great for me that a few of my friends have had or due to have babies after me so hopefully I am able to pass on anything that I have found helpful. Call me mean but a friend of mine also had a c-section due to her lovely little lady being breech too, I'm quite glad I have someone to talk to about it and hopefully I have been able to give her some advice on how I coped following the surgery.
With the wanted advice comes that unwanted advice, I know things were done so differently when I was a baby, mums of that era and before then weren't told about the dangers that are drilled into us now and of course the advice is constantly changing so it's hard to know what way is the right way. Everyone knows best! I have three siblings and my mum was told to put us to sleep all different ways, on our fronts, our sides and backs! Smoking wasn't the huge no no it is now, Obvioulsy it's always been horrible to smoke during pregnancy however I would really find someone smoking during pregnancy hard to accept however I know 30 years ago people didn't look twice to at a mother to be smoking, we then have the old saying 'didn't do me any harm' that may be true but we know better now and we know the implications and the consequences of smoking during pregnancy.
Sometimes we may be a little over cautious, for example all over the news at the moment is new research that suggests swaddling is detrimental to babies hip development and can cause overheating! Now Albie has never liked to be swaddled or even have blankets on so our gro-bag has been really helpful, but I know that swaddling has been around for donkeys years and really provides a comfort to some babies, the new advice is to swaddle if necessary but leave the legs loose enough for babies to kick them about.
Sometimes it's hard to listen to advice that you might not agree with, I tend to just give the 'ohh ok, that's interesting' rather than over sensitive 'don't tell me how to raise my child' Luckily for me the advice I have been given by everyone has on the whole been marvelous and I am so grateful to have friends to turn to. I have a good mix of parenting styles to ask about, from mummies following strict routines to those that take a more relaxed approach, neither works any better than the other, like I said what works for you is most important, I fall somewhere in the middle, we have a nighttime routine implemented, however during the day we pretty much have no routine, Albie naps when he wants to and lets me know every three hours he wants feeding. If you don't have any mummy friends I would really suggest going along to some mother and baby groups not just for the advice but for the company, it's good to have other people to moan to about your partners not doing the bottles and the night feeds!
How have you handled advice? Do you find it helpful or would you rather find your own way?