Mum Muscles….

Never underestimate the power of mum muscles. Firstly they carry around an unborn baby

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First time I’ve ever broadcast this picture…be nice

and all that comes with it (3 stone in my case!!) for 9 chuffing months. Then they birth that baby in whatever way they can…there’s a heck load of strong muscles there. However, the everyday mum muscles, I feel get rather forgotten about…

  • The ability to push a buggy across a road one handed whilst holding/dragging/rugby balling a screaming toddler who has chosen that crossing the road is the exact perfect moment to have a meltdown!
  • The ability to carry a baby, and a toddler who is refusing to come downstairs for breakfast, whilst perhaps also finger hooking dirty nappy sacks and old bottles of milk.
  • The ability to carry the baby, a load of washing and whichever toys the toddler deems ABSOLUTELY NESESSARY down stairs just because it’s easier than getting into a blooming argument.
  • The ability to swing a baby into a back carry in one fell swoop.

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    The only way to get tea cooked sometimes
  • The ability to push a swing higher, higher, higher for all of eternity!

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    Oh how was he ever so little?!
  • The ability to swing a toddler onto the toilet at the speed of light, one handed whilst holding the baby in the other arm
  • The ability to do the bounce/rock/jig motion for hours on end to get the baby to sleep.
  • The ability to hold said sleeping baby until the absolute opportune moment of deep sleep where lactic acid has built up so much you can’t even feel your arms any more, to then transfer that sleeping bundle into the crib (for it to then wake screaming 15 minutes later!)
  • The ability to push the buggy, AND carry the toddler AND chuffing scooter that he deemed absolutely necessary for the trip which he went on for all of 0.5 seconds before getting bored.
  • The ability to hold a squatting child till your thigh muscles start to shake whilst they back one out behind a bush in the only park that doesn’t have a toilet.

Mum muscles are chuffing awesome, don’t ever forget that!!

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Mum and dad muscles combined!!

20 Facts About Me…

So I’ve been tagged by the gorgeous Vix from Another Mum in London to give 20 facts about me…here goes…

1) I’m a southerner living “ooop north’ I grew up in Kent (Greater London) and left to go to university in Sheffield. I fell in love with the city (and my husband) and that was it. It’s the place I’m proud to call home, and the place my children were born and will grow up.

2) I’ve been a nanny for 10 years. I can’t quite believe it’s been that long! In that time I have cared for 23 different children from newborn right up to the 10 year olds that still have me back in the holidays!

3) I’m always cold. Maybe it’s the whole southerner up north thing…it’s definitely colder up here though. Living in an old house doesn’t help; our gas bill is often through the roof!

4) I have been baby obsessed my ENTIRE life!!

5) I studied Early Childcare studies at university. My husband likes to think all we did was colouring in but there was waaaaay more than that…(erm…drinking??)

6) I met my husband at university. We lived right next door to each other in halls. Some may say it’s fate…others may say it’s laziness!! Either way, he’s put up with me for 13 years now and he’s a bloody saint!

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2006…we’ve not changed that much, right???!?!

7) We got married at Chatsworth! Well, we married at the church in Edensor then the reception was at Chatsworth. It all seems like a distant dream, many sleepless nights ago, but it was an amazing (if very, very wet) day!

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8) I have two children Logan (2) and Molly (1) they’re my absolute world…I love spending time with them (and daddy) more than anything else. They make me laugh all day long, and just fill my heart fit to bursting with love.

9) I am sewing obsessed! I’m always thinking of new patterns in my head, and my poor children have to be the guinea pigs!!

10) I set up my own business in July of this year. I launched Bear&Babe after the push from lots of loved ones around me. It’s exhausting but going from strength to strength and I’m super proud of what we’ve achieved so far. My husband is a massive help and the driving force behind the company, he’s bloody amazing!

11) Bear&Babe is named after my children: Logan (Always called Logie Bear…sometimes Logie Bogie), and Molly: the Babe. I don’t know what I’d do if we have any more sprogs!

12) I love running but it has massively gone on the back burner lately (cant think why?!) I completed the Sheffield half marathon for the third time in April this year. We love to take the sprogs down to the park run on Saturday mornings. (a buggy each…it’s always a fight as to who has the heavier child!)

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13) Gravy…I bloody love gravy!! And it has to be the awful instant Bisto stuff too! The thicker the better

14) And butter…those that know me know my obsession with butter. It has to be real salted butter. Anything else wont do…and lashings of it!

15) I’m 32…I think

16) I’m the biggest wimp…I WILL NOT watch anything remotely scary. If I do I will be freaked out for months after!

17) I once touched Robbie Williams’ hand!

18) We LOVE Canada. My sister in law and her partner (and now their gorgeous twins) live out there, and we adore going to visit. Logan has been twice already and Molly once. My children are more travelled now, than I was at 20!!

19) I’d love to say I have a cool favourite film, but in all honesty I think it has to be Toy Story.

20) I was obsessed with Hanson growing up and I know all the words to MmmBop (runs and hides in shame…)

 

How the chuff do you juggle everything…?

So Bear&Babe is taking off. It’s wonderful…it’s amazing…I’m working for myself and hopefully going in the right direction. But I’m still in the predicament of having to nanny as well. It’s just exhausting. How are you meant to get everything done? What do you let go of (well…if you saw my house at the moment, it would be clear to see that any sort of cleaning is at the bottom of the list!) Some days I work from 8.30am till 8.30pm nannying, then come home and get cracking making orders. I have to say, if you don’t love what you do, you wouldn’t do it and I’m so extremely grateful for everyone that keeps me so busy! The teething babe keeps me up at night, but then they’re both up at the crack of arse to start the day. I sit in bed, giving Molly her first bottle, then out comes the laptop to get promotions up. Even when I’m not nannying, there’s the constant ‘mum life’ going on, the washing, the feeding, the shopping, the playing. And the poor husband…thankfully he’s got his phone and sky sports to stop him feeling too neglected!!

When I became a mother, all I dreamt was that I’d be at home looking after the sprogs. However, things don’t always work out the way you imagined, and I had to go to work. It’s fine, I love nannying, and I was so lucky to take Logan with me in my last job. However, the need to work has given me the push to start my own company. I want to be able to see more of the spogs, but also do something for myself at the same time. I’m working my ass off now so that hopefully in the (near) future I’ll be working for myself, fitting it all around the tiny humans.

Having your own business is so full of extreme highs and lows. The highs of registering the company, the rush of orders coming in (we seriously celebrate every one) then the realisation that you’re working till 1am to get orders done, the fear that no one will like your product, the worry that you’re not good enough, that anxiety that once you’ve posted it off it’s no longer in your hands. This is followed by an extreme high when you get messages from customers saying how much they love your items, the photos of happy babes wearing your clothes, fabulous reviews and repeat orders!

What I didn’t bargain for was how even when you’re not physically doing something, your brain is constantly thinking of something to do with the company. I design each pattern myself, I’m constantly thinking up new designs we could do, constantly searching for the perfect fabric…what about seasons, and different holidays that come up? There’s always something that needs doing; accounts, new designs to get up for sale, getting the perfect photo of products, promoting your products…sometimes the thought of it makes my stomach drop.

It’s hard not to panic sometimes and just chuck it all in. Fear of failing can be so overwhelming…but it’s getting over that and forcing yourself into the great unknown. Push yourself to do something that is completely out of your comfort zone. I’m not a business woman and I massively lack confidence. Starting this business has made me realise I can do a hell of a lot more than I thought. There are times I have to square my shoulders, swallow a lump in my throat and go and walk up to a shop owner looking like I’ve got my shit together, and ask them to stock my items. Thankfully, they can’t see how much I’m sweating…oh, and taking the sprogs with you is a massive distraction!

I can’t explain how grateful we are for each and every customer that supports us and I hope Bear&Babe just keeps growing. We have so many more ideas up our sleeves, and we’d bloody love you to join us on our journey!

 

 

How to shower on your own with a baby and a toddler…

Daddy’s away…daddy’s been away a lot lately (lots of work things but this weekend is a stag so don’t feel too sorry for him.) Mamma’s had to get pretty swift at grabbing a shower in the small window of having finished feeding the babe and going downstairs to make the troops breakfast!

It goes something like this:

Step in bath and start shower. Don’t step in the water, no no, that is a rookie mistake as in 5,4,3,2,1…muuuuummmmyyyyy

Jump out the bath (thankfully you’re still dry) crawl on the floor to see the boy (you’re stark naked and the curtains are open; the neighbours can be saved that sight) the boy is trying to stack balls and getting frustrated. Quick physics lesson that balls are round and won’t stack, as they don’t have flat sides. Try and persuade boy that he can sit in our bed and watch CBeebies. It gets turned down in replace of trying to stack shuttlecocks (mental note to remove the sports equipment from his room)

Jump back in shower.

Wet hair

Small child opens the door

“Whatcha doing mummy?”

“Having a shower bubs”

Walks out leaving door open

Shove door shut from the tub

Door gets pushed open

“You ok loges?”

No answer

“Loges???”

Still no answer

Shove door shut again

Damn door opens again making you freeze

Shove it shut one last time in the hope he’s buggered off to play somewhere or has gone into the CBeebies trance

Wash hair…was that a cry I heard?? Nah it’s fine, condition hair…ok that was definitely a cry, jump out the shower all soapy check in bedroom to see all is fine, babe playing on the floor and the boy has finally succumbed to the pull of CBeebies.

Curse ‘baby tinnitus’ (where you hear a baby crying even when there isn’t)

Jump back in shower.

Consider shaving as you’re taking the sprogs swimming this afternoon. Decide that’s too risky a move as there’s JUST NO TIME. Hope that the swimming pool is empty this afternoon.

Finish shower in approximately 23 seconds as now you’re certain you can hear crying.

Jump out and grab towel, thankful that you got a full 30 seconds to yourself.

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They’re fine…they’re always bloody fine

Or just choose option B:

B) Shower the bloody night before

 

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PS: we really do miss you daddy.  xx

Can I bottle this moment please…

Life right now is pretty damn perfect. I just want to hold on to this moment and not let it go.

I feel so grateful for all I have. We have been through some damn tough times in the past and I remember saying ‘things will work out’ trying to keep positive when sometimes it felt like I didn’t actually know how we would get through. Well right now, I feel like things have all worked out pretty damn perfectly.

Maybe it’s because I know there may be an end in sight, as eventually I’ll have to go back to work. Going back to work when Logan was three months old, even though he came with me, has made me realise how amazing this time is right now, being at home with them. Putting all my focus and energy into both of them without any distractions. From the outside it may not look like we have a lot. However, I just feel so damn thankful for all I have and every day that I get to spend with the loves of my life.

I’m loving being at home with the sprogs. Each morning I have no alarm clock, just the squawks of the baby or the chattering of Logan to rouse me from my sleep. Going and getting them from their beds and be greeted by their smiles is just the best way to start the day.IMG_6786 We have such lazy mornings. Something I’ve not really done before. I’ve always been someone who will jump out of bed and try to get everything done, seeing no point in hanging about. Well now our mornings consist of me feeding Molly while Logan has his milk, all snuggled up in our bed watching CBeebies.   We often don’t make it downstairs till about 8.30. These mornings are some of the most precious times to me. Just snuggling these warm little beings that we made. Listening to Logan chattering about Neenaws, or iggle piggle or whatever else he is fixated on at the time. Smelling that warm little smell and soaking them in.

They each seem to be at such a lovely stage that just makes my little heart so glad every day. Molly is at the stage where, at four months old, she is content to lie or sit there, watching the world go on around her. Going and chatting to her, her little body wriggles in acknowledgement and she gurgles and gives you the biggest beaming grin. We had a little blip in her sleeping through the other week, but I spent one night persevering; going and cuddling her, and putting her back down till she got herself to sleep. It did the trick and I still sometimes hear her wake but she shuffles around and goes back to sleep generally without a whimper.

Logan seems to be growing into such a cool little dude and he makes his mamma proud on so many occasions. He is so warm and loving towards Molly it melts my heart. He loves to go and see her when its time to wake her up. He’ll often climb

up to her cot or want to get in. He’s so happy when she wakes and I bring her in to play. He’s started trying to pick her up or take her hand so she can come and play with him. I can’t wait till they can play together. However, I’m well aware we have to get through the stage where she’s crawling round and destroys everything he’s doing!!

I feel like I’ve blinked and all of a sudden he’s growing out of toddlerhood already. He IMG_6730takes himself off upstairs now to play Lego which I thought wouldn’t happen for another few years. It has me on edge though because on one hand its brilliant that he can go and play while I’m making tea but on the other he’s still so young that I cant trust him not to go fishing down the toilet…or get into the dreaded tub of Sudocrem!

He is so damn amenable he makes my life very easy at the moment. This will all change once he starts nursery I’m sure. He’ll soon learn to answer back and be a little buggar but for now I’m going with it.

I’m not naïve however, I know everything is ‘a phase’ even the good times. Soon Molly

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Poonami of epic proportions

will be teething and Logan will go through a grumpy sod phase.  I also don’t have rose tinted glasses on, there are days when the baby wont stop shitting through all her clothes, or like this morning, when Logan decided he

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Some days look like this!

would lie down in the post office just to be defiant! I’m writing all this down as I want to look back at this time when I’m tearing my hair out, wondering where it all went wrong! But for now I just want to hold onto this moment and squeeze every ounce of gorgeousness out of it that I can.

 

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Oh, and that there baby daddy’s pretty fab too (God forbid I forget him!!)

 

Sometimes you drive me nuts…

Sometimes you drive me nuts dear boy

When you refuse to be polite

You refuse to say ‘I’m sorry’ or ‘thank you’

We’ve come to loggerheads over this

I’m afraid I wont give in though Bear

It’s a battle of wills and this is one I’m not prepared to give in to

Even if I have to walk away screaming inside

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Emptying the cupboards…always helpful!

Sometimes you drive me nuts dear boy

When you won’t stop singing in bed at night

If you just went to sleep we’d all feel better,

Counting to ten, Bear, it doesn’t matter

Head, shoulders, knees and toes is the song of the week

Just lay down your sleepy head and all will be alright

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Always with that ass in the air!

Sometimes you drive me nuts dear boy

When you whinge at me and say ‘nooooo’

In that annoying way you do

I’ll keep reminding you it’s “no thank you”

And slowly, slowly you’re remembering

Now “no thank you mamma” makes me smile from ear to ear

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Rabbit always gets the best kisses

Sometimes you drive me nuts dear boy

When you have a meltdown because we’re going the wrong way on our walk

I’m sorry Bear but a grumpy child won’t phase me

Sometimes you have to do things you don’t want

Or go in a direction you don’t want to

That’s life kiddo

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Throw your scooter down in disgust as we’re going the ‘wrong way’ oh and then have a 10 minute paddy!

You may think I’m being hard on you Bear

But truly it’s for the best

I’m trying to help shape you into a kind, courteous little dude

Sometimes it takes everything I’ve got to not give in and let you have your way

But what will that teach you?

Damn that cute little face of yours!

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Even though you drive me completely crazy sometimes

You’ll never stop having my love

Its because I love you I make you do these things

You’ll get there Bear

Kisses and cuddles after make it all worthwhile

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I love you in spite of the madness

And the fact you’re driving me slowly insane

We have so much fun playing together

I want you to stay this small forever

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In two years we’ll be going through it all again!

And now we’ve got another sprog

Oh crap

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Cheers to making it through another day

Little Bear turns two…

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Amazing neenaw cake courtesy of Nanna Croft

Ok, when did that happen? I know I’ve been caught up in a sea of newborn milk and nappies. But when did you get so big? I find it so hard to believe you’re two. When I go and see you fast asleep, still snoozing in a cot, all snuggled in your sleeping bag with your Bunny tucked under you and your bum in the air, you look just like that little 6 month old baby from what felt like yesterday. Maybe you’re too big to be in there but who cares Bear, for the time being you’re so happy there we’re not about to change. I’m sure you’ll let us know when you’re ready for a big bed (or we’ll hear the bang when you climb out!)

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You love to just sit and look through your books. Cant say I enjoy putting the hundreds of them back though!

You’ve accomplished so much in your two years of life. At the moment one of your favourite things is to ‘scoot, scoot, scoot’ (said in a French accent for some reason) to the park. You’ve become a little speed demon on that thing, I spend the entire time apologising to people as you nearly (or actually) crash into them. Damn child, you need to learn how to steer!

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IMG_4698We’re loving how your conversation skills are coming along leaps and bounds. Your little ‘wow, amazing’ has us in stitches every time. I love that we can explain what’s happening now and you respond with your little ‘ok’. It’s really cut back on those delightful tantrums! You love to say bye-bye to everything which makes us chuckle. When we drive past the park you have say bye-bye to every piece of equipment. We still haven’t worked out what you mean when you say ‘bye-bye up’ and ‘bye-bye down’ but I’m sure you know.

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I love how when she’s in the sling and I pick you up too you kiss and stroke her head

Your love for ‘bebe Moy-yeee’ is seriously so damn cute. You love to include her in all your games (mainly bounce Moy-yeee) and make sure she eats a bit of everything you’re eating. If she’s crying you now go over to her and stroke her little head. I’m loving seeing your relationship grow and I’m hoping you two will grow up to be the best of friends.

You’re loving vehicles and things that move more and more. Neenaws especially; the sheer joy on your face as one flies past. Airplanes; they’re another love. You can spot one so far in the distance it’s literally a dot in the sky. Oh, and God forbid we forget cranes! I think you actually know where they’re all situated as we drive into town now!

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You’re still not bored of building towers!!

As a typical two year old, you don’t sit still. You will run, jump, spin and most hilariously gallop your way around. You’re becoming a complete monkey now, taking great joy in swinging from things, oh, and climbing the massive (a good 15 feet high) climbing frame.

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Maybe just don’t ask!!

Now you most definitely have your moments, but I’m loving that you’re generally a chilled little dude. Please don’t become a buggar now you’re two…if you hear whispers in the playground about terrible twos, just ignore them ok?! Oh, and that thing about dropping naps…that’s a myth too…all the cool kids nap till they’re 7, got that?!

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