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AN HONEST UPDATE

If you have watched my ‘how I felt after having a baby’ video, you’ll know that just after Lawson was born, I struggled for quite a few weeks with motherhood, bonding and generally just adjusting to the change. Well, nearly 7 months in, I’m kinda finding myself back there again. I did not see this coming!

Lawson has always been such a dream baby, he has slept well, fed well, sure he’s had his moments where he has been difficult, but overall, he is such a happy and contented baby and pretty easy to handle – we’ve been really lucky!

However, at the moment, he seems to have turned into a completely different child! I’m putting it down to developmental leaps and teething mostly, and potentially some separation anxiety, but the last 4 weeks have been really tough. If I’m honest, I feel like I’m getting to know a different baby. He’s harder to entertain, he cries at the tiniest things and generally he’s a lot more demanding than he has been previously.

Let’s look at it from Lawson’s perspective though (mainly for my benefit!) In the last 4 weeks, he has transitioned to eating 3 meals a day; he has learned to roll over and constantly practices this and is being really active; he has started sleeping on his tummy; he desperately wants to crawl and explore but his body isn’t quite there yet. That’s just to name a few! He is going through an awful lot at the moment, his developments are absolutely rapid, and to be honest I think it’s taking us both a bit of time to catch up.

I just feel like the pressure, the overwhelm, the exhaustion that motherhood brings has really got on top of me lately. I find it hard to constantly push through and I feel like I’m on the go ALL. THE. TIME. Feeding, sterilising, nappy changing, bathing, cleaning the house, battling for naps. I could go on! I don’t feel like I get any time to myself, and I don’t feel like I’m getting enough rest. Basically I am run down. I’m tired. I’m frustrated because I thought motherhood was supposed to get easier. It’s getting harder! (Just wanted to add a little side note here that I do have an AMAZING husband who is so supportive and hands on with Lawson – I am thankful for him every single day!)

And all of this is made all the more emotional because of the sheer heartbreaking love I feel for Lawson. Writing this makes me feel guilty. Making my breakfast while he plays, and proceeding to then eat my breakfast while he watches looking heartbroken, makes me feel guilty! Every time I do ANYTHING for myself, I feel guilty.

I don’t really know where the image of this ‘perfect mother’ has come from. I feel like I am supposed to spend every moment he’s awake with him, but if you do that when the heck do you get anything done?! (That’s a genuine question!)

Another thing that I’ve really been struggling with (and I think a lot of mums struggle with) is comparing myself to other mums, and second guessing my decisions. Again, I write this for my benefit. I KNOW MY CHILD BEST. I make decisions, and I need to be confident in them. Taking time out for myself to relax makes me a better mum to Lawson. An overwhelmed, exhausted mother is not that helpful.

So the result of all of this buzzing around in my head is an unmotivated, withdrawn and pretty tearful Hayley! I definitely don’t feel like myself at the moment, and so I’m just trying to be as kind to myself as possible and just get through the days by making them as easy as possible. For example, I’m feeding Lawson quite a few pouches at the moment because I don’t feel like I can make my own purees, and THAT’S OK. It’s temporary! Just while I get my shit together, I need to make things easier and less stressful. I need to put less pressure on myself until I’m out of this little funk.

So to the wonderful people who watch my videos, might follow me on Instagram/Twitter/Facebook/Snapchat (I mean there’s not huge amounts, but to anyone reading this!), apologies if I’m a bit inconsistent with stuff. Family comes first. You know how it is 🙂

 

 

April 22, 2017

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10 WAYS I AM #ROCKINGMOTHERHOOD

I was tagged by the lovely Dhillondeeds to take the #rockingmotherhood challenge – and if I’m honest, the tag couldn’t have come at a worse time! The last two weeks with Lawson have been a real challenge, I’ve just been trying to get through the days with what has felt like a massive lack of energy and enthusiasm. I have been feeling mum guilt constantly at how much I have let Lawson entertain himself in his Jumperoo rather than playing with him myself just to get a bit of ‘me time’, and I haven’t felt like I’ve been ‘rocking it’ at all, actually!

So for me, this post is going to be like therapy! Sometimes, when you’re in the difficult times, it’s kinda the best thing you can do to look for the positives and give yourself a little pat on the back. So that’s what I’mma do! I’m going to shower this post with pictures of Lawson and me; these are the ways I am rocking motherhood.

 

  1. Lawson’s food. I am attempting to be domesticated and make Lawson’s purees myself. I do give him pouches when we’re out and about, but when he’s at home, he has home cooked puree that I have made myself. I’m pretty proud of how well I’ve managed to keep that up! I’m even trying baby led weaning a bit more despite being absolutely terrified! Go me!

 

  1. The house isn’t a complete tip. I’ve been working super hard to keep the house clean and tidy, even just doing 10 minute speed cleans here and there have massively helped the place just to feel a bit more under control.

 

  1. I work tirelessly every single day to make sure Lawson is happy and laughs often. His smile and his laugh is literally what gives me strength (that and a bucket load of coffee), so every day I work my butt off to find new ways of entertaining him and making him laugh. Him being happy and laughing is literally all I care about!
  2. I do think I have quite a good balance between the ‘attachment parenting’ style and the ‘Gina Ford parenting’ style (not that I have a problem with either of these!) This is what has worked for Lawson. For example, I have been very ‘baby led’ with his feeding and sleeping in terms of how much food he has/when we started weaning him and giving him what he needs in order to sleep, but we also can be pretty strict and put boundaries and routines in place i.e. specific feeding times, nap times etc.

 

  1. I know Lawson inside out. Sure, there are times (quite often as of late) where he can be screaming in my face and I’m crying because I don’t know how I can help him, but on a day to day basis, I know his signs and signals for different things, and I’m proud of how much I know him and what he needs. 
  2. I find the strength to push through in difficult times. These past two weeks I have found that I have been able to really push through and be strong for Lawson without having a complete meltdown! That’s progress!

 

  1. I find time for myself. Not very often, but I do it! I try to work out every day, because I find that helps not only your body but your headspace as well. Dan and I try to go out on date nights every couple of weeks, and I find time to have baths/do things that help me to relax most weeks too. I think it’s important to recharge.

 

  1. I have a strong mother’s instinct. When it comes to Lawson, I know that my gut feeling is usually going to be pretty accurate, so this is what I tend to follow rather than read books and get overwhelmed by comparing myself to other parents. I truly believe that I know what’s best for him, and that’s what I follow!
  2. I give Lawson opportunities to learn. Because he is so active now, I am giving Lawson a lot of playtime on his tummy and encouraging him to crawl. I also give him quite a bit of sitting time so he can strengthen those core muscles, and generally I feel like I’m helping his development quite a bit!

 

  1. I am driven by love. This is probably the most important thing. Even in difficult times, I am completely overwhelmed by how much I love Lawson and just want him to be healthy and happy. This is what drives me to keep going!That was hard! Sometimes it’s really difficult to blow your own trumpet, but I think it is SO necessary. Writing this post has actually made me feel so much better and believe that I am doing a good job! Motherhood is flippin’ hard, and we need more of this!! So I am tagging:

 

Amy from Mummy Fox

Abbie from Lilypad and Bow

and Gemma from Somewhere After the Rainbow

All amazing women who are smashing motherhood! Get on it ladies!

 

 

April 18, 2017

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5 WAYS TO CHERISH THE MOMENT

I know what you’re thinking.

 ‘Not another patronising post from some head in the clouds blogger telling me how to enjoy my kids.’

Looking at the title of this post, I get how you might think that… However, I can’t tell you enough how much I used to HATE it when people told me to #cherisheverymoment just after Lawson was born. I was a frickin’ zombie!! I was in no way cherishing my moments in the few months after Lawson’s birth. If I’m honest, I was just trying to make it through each day without having an emotional meltdown!

So, with this context in mind, and emotional meltdowns a part of the past (kind of…), I wanted to write a practical post about how I now make the most of my time with Lawson and really try to ‘cherish’ it (can we just vito that word?!)

My first tip is to take MORE photos. Now, many people won’t agree with me here and might say that being on your phone when you’re with your kid is quite the opposite of ‘cherishing the moment’. But I think documenting your time with your family is one of the best ways to soak in the good times. It means that when you’re having a crappy day, you have something to look back on to remind you of what you have to be grateful for. I am a MASSIVE advocate of being IN photos with your children too. I wish I would have taken more photos during my zombie phase – I honestly don’t remember very much of it and wish I had pictures to look back on, even if in the ones I did take I look like I’ve been punched in the face.

(This is Lawson’s FIRST EVER photo – about 55 minutes after he was born!)

My second tip would be to keep a memory box. Gotta come clean with you here, Lawson’s memory box is more of a memory pile at the moment. Haven’t got round to buying a physical box, but it’s on my to-do list! So in Lawson’s memory pile I have kept things like the first babygrow he wore, his diary from hospital, the first hat he wore etc. It’s honestly one of my favourite things to do (especially when we have people over… I’m just such a fun person!) to get this out and look at how teeny tiny he once was. Like I said, I have hardly any memories of that time!

Make the most of night feeds. I’m aware this suggestion might not be for everyone! But especially as Lawson has got older and a LOT more wriggly, lovely still cuddles during the day are kind of a thing of the past. The only time where I get those magical still moments just me and him are in his night feeds. I always give him his bottle, and then just sit and hold him for 10 extra minutes. I don’t do it every night, if I’m well tired then I’ll just go straight back to bed, but most nights, I really like to mark the moment by just having 10 minutes holding my boy.

Create moments to cherish. I think it’s hard to really ‘cherish the moment’ if you’re just sitting at home watching YouTube videos (guilty). I’m not saying we have to book a family holiday to Disney World or anything, but even something such as a simple family walk can just help us press the pause button on life, especially because mama life can get SO busy!

Last one, and my personal favourite. Look after YOURSELF. I am overwhelmed every single day by how hard it is to find time to relax and take care of myself. It’s just so hard to make the time for it. But we must. And here’s why. Eventually, if we keep giving and giving to our little ones without taking a little time to recharge, our batteries are going to run out, and we’re gonna start feeling the pressure. Not very easy to ‘cherish every moment’ when you’re in that frame of mind. I’ve been there! I try and take the time once a week just to chill out, whether that’s having a bath, doing some yoga, watching a movie, I make the time for me, because then I know I’m going to be more present when I’m with Lawson.

I hope these little tips were helpful in some way, I’m still learning to pause more often and think about how lucky I am. It really can be so difficult. Let me know in the comments, what do you do to pause and mark moments? I’d love to know! Give me some tips!!

 

April 11, 2017

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NOD POD BABY BLANKET REVIEW

I gotta come clean with you. One of my main #mumfails (that I have plenty of #mumguilt about) is that I’m never really sure how to dress Lawson appropriately for the weather… Throughout the ENTIRE winter season, I used to see babies in prams and car seats snuggled up in cosy snowsuits padded with blankets and a wooly hat, thinking ‘oh my goodness, Lawson must be bloody freezing!’ I just don’t think we ever really got it quite right.

This exact situation happened a few months ago in Nandos, where I was lunching with my ‘yoga mamas’ (we met at pregnancy yoga, hence the name. We weren’t doing yoga in Nandos or anything). I noticed that one of the babies looked particularly snug in her blanket, which was not only hooded, but the SOFTEST thing I had ever felt. ‘What IS that?!’ I remember asking my friend, and she told me about the Nod Pod company. So when Nod Pod got in touch asking if I would like to review one of their products, I literally JUMPED at the opportunity. To tell you the truth my enthusiasm was a bit awkward.

Nod Pod is the solution to my #mumfail. This blanket is totally revolutionary, and one of the most practical products I think I’ve come across actually.

The fact that the blanket comes with leg holes is probably my favourite thing about this product. It means that you can use it in the car seat, in the pram, in the carrier. Bye bye mum guilt!! It’s super warm and fleecy and I’d be lying if I told you I’m not wrapped up in it right now writing this post.

The blanket comes in loads of different designs, patterned and plain. There really is something for everyone here. It also comes in different sizes, which I LOVE. So ours is 6-12 months, which I know will take us right through to next Autumn!

Nod Pod is a real game changer. It’s such a practical product that can be used in so many different ways (including a mummy leg warmer) – I would highly recommend it! I mean it’s worth it just to see your baby wrapped up like a mini burrito! All the heart eyes for this!

You can grab your Nod Pod blanket HERE.

Does anyone else have one of these? What is your most practical baby product? Leave me a comment and let me know!!

Hope you’re well lovelies!

April 5, 2017

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LAWSON’S FIRST FOOD FAVOURITES

We first noticed about 2 months ago that Lawson was polishing off his bottles like an absolute truck, and every time we increased his feed by an ounce, he’d polish that off too and want more… Thus, we have started weaning! I was super excited to start weaning Lawson and watching him try new tastes and textures, and ever since day one, he’s absolutely loved it! That boy will eat anything! So I thought I’d share with you today some of Lawson’s favourite first foods that I have given him, in case some of you are coming up to weaning, or are already weaning!

1. CARROT AND PARSNIP

This is actually the first purée I gave Lawson, I even think I did it wrong because it was a very textured purée, but I added some water to it and it gave it a really nice consistency. For this one, boil the carrots and parsnips (do however many you like depending on how much you want!) for 15-20 minutes, blitz with a hand blender and add water if needed. I made a batch of this and stored it in the freezer.

2. BUTTERNUT SQUASH

A well-known favourite amongst babies – Lawson took to this straight away. With this one, I actually stuck it in the slow cooker – literally by itself, nothing else with it, on high for 3 hours – it was done perfectly. It’s so easy then to spoon the flesh out and again hand blend it. No water needed with this one, it’s such a lovely consistency!

3. BROCCOLI AND CAULIFLOWER

This one I felt was a bit of a risk. It’s a bit more lumpy, and even after trying it I thought that I wouldn’t be too keen having it on my plate! But still, I thought I’d give it a go, and classic Lawson – he loved it! I wanted to get him used to different coloured foods, and greens are probably the hardest ones – so I was dead proud of him for that! Just boil broccoli and cauliflower florets for 10-15 minutes, hand blend and add water if you feel it’s needed. This one freezes really well too.

4. BANANA PORRIDGE

I just use Ready Brek oats for this recipe – baby porridge is such a waste of money! I use 2oz of his milk mixed with 3 scoops (I use an old scoop from his formula) of Ready Brek, cook in a pan and add some mashed banana. He LOVES this one, and it’s a quick and easy make if you’ve ran out of frozen batches!

5. PEAR / APPLE & PEAR

Peel and quarter 3-4 pears (depending on how much you want), boil for 10-15 minutes and blend with a hand blender. This is by far Lawson’s favourite recipe – it’s also a lot nicer to clean up because it’s a clear colour rather than bright orange (roll eye emoji). For apple and pear, it’s exactly the same just with added apple!

6. MANGO AND BANANA

Peel and chop 1 mango, add some mashed banana and blend with a hand blender. Lawson still isn’t that sure about this one – I don’t know if maybe the mango is a bit sharp for him, but true to form he eats it anyway!

And there you have it, these are the foods I have tried with Lawson so far and how I make them. So far so good!

I’m going to be doing a bit of a ‘weaning week’ next week on my YouTube channel, so head on over there if you want some more updates and tips on weaning.

I am also documenting Lawson’s first tastes through the medium of Facebook Live (oh technology, how great you are) – so if you want to see some of Lawson’s hilarious faces when he tries new foods, go to the Land of Lawson Facebook page to keep up to date! He turns 6 months on Sunday which means new stuff OTHER than fruit and veg (gulp).

What are your favourite recipes for babies? If I’m honest I’m running out of ideas a bit so any inspiration would be greatly appreciated! Leave me a comment below if you have any good ones for me!

 

March 22, 2017

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MOTHER’S DAY GIFT GUIDE

Since it’s my very first Mother’s Day this year – my excitement levels for it have gone through the roof! I thought I would make a lovely Mother’s Day gift guide, not only as a big hint to Dan (because let’s face it, I don’t think Lawson can choose anything…), but also in case anyone is struggling for ideas – I think all of these gifts are really lovely, and pretty much a guarantee to be loved by most mums.

Here’s what is first up on my list. I never thought I’d be one for clothing that blatantly showcases that I am a mother, but here I am, mother to Lawson, and I want to proclaim it to the world through the medium of this garment from Selfish Mother. I’ve had my eye on these for the longest time – they’re edgy, comfy, and most importantly, grey. That’s a winning combo for me. £35 for this one (Daniel – you should know that this is a compromise from the original jumper that I was going to ask for for £50).

Flowers. You literally cannot go wrong. However cliche you make think they are, flowers will make most women smile. They brighten the home, and they’re a really thoughtful gift that doesn’t have to blow the budget to show that you appreciate your Mama. These particular beauties are £25 from M&S – but there are ones to suit a range of budgets.

These little guys just melt my heart. I follow the company Honeywell Bakes on Instagram, and they must think I stalk them or something because I’m literally liking EVERY. SINGLE. PICTURE. These biscuits are just the cutest thing I think I’ve ever seen – they have a lot of different ranges in stock at REALLY reasonable prices too. This gift box comes in at £18.50 and I think they are a really original and thoughtful gift.

OK. This one is a long shot. For anyone that really wants to blow the budget (Daniel – just think about how much Lawson loves me, and how much money he might like to spend on me to tell me that on Mother’s Day…) This is my dream changing bag from Tiba + Marl. Coming in at £120 (I know…), it’s real leather, comes with so many different compartments and a changing mat too. I can literally picture me with this bag, wearing my ‘mother’ top, holding the M&S flowers and munching the Mother’s Day biscuits. It’s a really exciting image for me.

Onto stationery then – the top two in this picture are from M&S. I am OBSESSED with M&S cards/gift stuff right now. Someone needs to buy me that gift bag – £5, and it has confetti in it. I’m sold. The bottom two cards are from Paperchase, and I just love them both. I like cards that also double up as wall art, and I would be more than happy to have these framed in my house.

You can’t go wrong with candles. You literally just can’t. In my most recent video I said I was on the look out for some new candles, so I did a little research and these are the ones that stood out. It’s worth mentioning as well that Sainsbury’s Home candles smell AMAZING. They don’t have them online so couldn’t find any pics but take my word for it, they’re SO GOOD, and cheap too. Top left candle is from M&S – £9.50. Olive might strike you as a slightly weird scent for a candle, but it’s actually one of my very favourite smells. Have you tried ‘Olive Branch’ shower gel from Lush?! OMG. Top right is from The White Company (had to include one!) coming in at £20, they just look so sleek and stylish – I can’t really find a candle that does it as well as they do. Bottom left is a beautiful candle from Oliver Bonas, one of my very favourite places. This one is £17.50, and although I haven’t had a sniff in real life, I’m pretty sure anything with elderflower in it smells incredible. Bottom right is a little set from John Lewis – I am OBSESSED with the design of these – they literally look like they were designed to go in my bathroom. The set is £30, and I think dotted around a bathroom would look so gorgeous.

This one is for all of the entrepreneurial mamas out there. Yes Mum are a company that specialise in positive affirmation cards especially for mums. They have loads of different sets, but I thought this one was most applicable for me! I found these on Scandiborn for £10.50, the other sets are on there too.

Again, if all else fails, go for pyjamas. As a recently qualified mother, I can confirm that I spend at least 70% of my time in my PJs. These ones from Next are an absolute winner for Spring I think, and are actually really good value for money at £18. And again with the grey. Amazing.

So that is my pick of some of the best gifts for lovely mothers far and wide for Mother’s Day. I hope you all have a really special day. If you’re a fellow mama, know that you are AMAZING. I hope you get well and truly smothered in love. If you’re looking for your own mum, remember to tell her you love her as often as you can, not just on Mother’s Day. Guarantee it’ll make her day.

March 15, 2017

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LITTLE N AND THE LION STASHMAT REVIEW

I had been after a portable playmat for the longest time. Babies are hard enough to entertain at home, let alone in other places, amiright?! I needed a solution.

As soon as I saw the #stashmat (that’s right – this mat has its own hashtag) on my Instagram feed, I knew it was something I immediately needed in my life. What’s better still, the lovely Ellen from Little N and the Lion very kindly gifted one to us to review (blogger perks!)

I speak no word of a lie here, this mat is a game changer. Ever since it arrived, our old mat has been packed away to make way for this new sparkly one, coming in two contrasting prints (which you get to pick yourself by the way – and the choice is IMMENSE. It took me about half a day to decide…) and a gorgeous separate print for the drawstring. I went for the black and white clouds (because monochrome) and the mint chevron, and the drawstring fabric is this gorgeous grey with teeny tiny elephants on! SO. CUTE.

The fabric is durable, washable and extremely Instagram-able. Lawson loves the fact that I can just spread out all of his toys on there, although he does get pretty overwhelmed and attempt to hold all of his toys at the same time. Just not possible buddy!

I actually gave this mat a little test run for its ‘portability’ factor today. I was filming in a location other than my home, and really needed somewhere to put Lawson where he’d be happy, but distracted enough so mummy could get her work done! I have witness to this, Lawson happily played on this little mat for the entire time I was filming, only getting grouchy because he was tired, and mummy cuddles soon fixed that (don’t they fix everything?!) Even when we changed locations, it was so easy just to pull the drawstrings to turn it into a little storage bag, sling it over my shoulder, and off we went. I’m pretty sure this mat is going to be permanently on the go with us now – it makes travelling with a little one SO much easier.

So all in all, we would highly recommend this gorgeous little mat – not only a hit with the babas, but also a hit with the parents too!

You can get your hands on one here:

http://www.littlenandthelion.com

If you want to see the mat in action – I made a little video all about what I do to entertain Lawson on a daily basis (anyone else run out of ideas?!) and you can watch that here:

March 8, 2017

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LAWSON’S 6-9 MONTH WARDROBE WISHLIST

This is genuinely one of my favourite things about having a baby. They need a whole new wardrobe like every 3-4 months. And it’s a genuine NEED so I don’t need to feel guilty about spending money, right?!

Even though Lawson has only been wearing his current wardrobe since Christmas really, things are starting to get a teeny tiny bit tight, and I’m not entirely sure his 3-6 month wardrobe is going to last him much longer! So ever the organised mother, I am straight on the online shopping band-wagon and am starting to scout out items that I love for his next wardrobe.

He’ll probably be in these things until May/June time so I’m not going full on summer wear just yet (c’mon, we all know what English weather is like), but I’m trying to embrace more spring-like colour themes and try and pull myself away from my monochrome obsession a little (albeit mostly unsuccessful – but the thought was there).

Let’s start with jumpers. I have a little obsession with Lawson in jumpers – partially because it eradicates the worry that I don’t dress him warm enough (slightly), but mostly because he looks SO. DAM. CUTE. in them! So 3 out of these 4 jumpers are actually from H&M. And OK, maybe I didn’t do that great steering away from my usual monochrome style, but I couldn’t resist these beauties! I particularly like the one on the top left because it has a positive message, and if people don’t listen to babies then, well… I just don’t know. The top right monster jumper is also H&M and you can tell I made an effort with this one because it has yellow in it (proud face emoji). Equally, bottom left is also H&M and I am a little bit in love with that bear face! The hoodie on the bottom right is from Zara. I LOVE Zara baby clothes. Never get old. Lawson has never actually had a hoodie before (other than a zip-up one), so I was kind of enticed by this one. I think 6-9 months is definitely an OK age to start upping his swag game.

It’s no secret than I have a slightly unhealthy obsession with baby leggings. Lawson finds them SO comfy, and I almost see them as a collectors item – I like collecting different ones! So the two prints that you can see here (Flamingos and Monstera Leaf) are from one of my all time favourite Instagram stores called The Cotton Barn. We have so many pairs of leggings from that company, and they are such good quality and fit really nicely, and let’s be honest, those prints are the best thing you’ve ever seen, are they not? Definitely not going to hold back from putting Lawson in that flamingo print. ALL the heart eyes for that. Top right pair is from another Instagram store called Turtledove London – I have a pair of dungarees from here and again, super impressed with the quality. These leggings are from their new spring collection and I’ve got my eye firmly set on them. Last but most certainly not least, the bottom left pair of leggings are from Tobias and the Bear – one of my firm favourites for leggings. They have collaborated with Mr Men to make these AMAZING leggings which I am obsessed with – even if I do find Mr Tickle a little bit creepy. Childhood mems.

This collection I am very excited about. Let’s start with the top left motif tee from Zara. Instant cool. Lawson looks SO great in grey, I may even buy this top in the next size up because I feel like baggy tees look cool on babies too. Top right is my FAVE!! This is from GAP – currently in the sale at £6.99. WHAT. I just love this and am actually going to try and sweet talk Dan and convince him we absolutely need this in our lives ASAP before it sells out! Get on this one people. Love it. Bottom left is quite possibly the most surprising entry because it’s from TESCO. And it’s £4. AMAZING. I saw this in my local Tesco the other day and was a bit indecisive as to whether I liked it – but I think I really do. It’s kind of fun and quirky and all of the badges and letters are individually sewn on – making it look a lot more expensive than it actually is I think! Bottom right is a slightly boring entry for me, because we actually already have these bodysuits in a smaller size. They’re from H&M and I’m mainly just posting it as a reminder to myself that H&M do GREAT bodysuits that are versatile, good quality and great value for money.

So from about 3 months onwards, bibs have to become a necessary part of a baby’s wardrobe. Annoying as it may be because it covers up half their outfit, when you have prints like this, it’s kinda not so bad. I’m pretty fussy when it comes to bibs because Lawson dribbles SO MUCH and I’m not a fan of changing bibs like 4 times in one day – I want one that’s going to withstand the dribble monster. So I buy all of my bibs from a company called Jenny Wren Craft. I haven’t found any other bibs that use this kind of fabric that absorbs the drool rather than soaking it through. I mean, it’s also a bonus that their fabrics are a bit gorgeous too! So I bought a few for his 3-6 month wardrobe, and these bad boys are on my wish-list for Lawson’s spring wardrobe.

Pyjamas. Oh how I love them. I have a bit of a confession. Although I attempt to dress Lawson in cool clothes during the day, at night I REALLY like him to look like a newborn baby. I love having pyjama snuggles and cuddles in his sleeping bag and I just think he looks SO CUTE! I’ve raved about Next sleepsuits before, and will continue to do so, because I just don’t think you can beat them in terms of quality. They wash so well and are great at withstanding nappy leaks/vomit explosions/dribble overflows that may happen during the night. So the top right and bottom left are the multi-packs I have my eye on for Lawson’s next wardrobe. I just love them. The top left and bottom right are kind of new additions to my brand repertoire, coming in from Boden. I hadn’t looked at Boden before but I sometimes get catalogues through the post, and when I spotted these two, I kind of fell in love. I love Lawson in white for bedtime because I just think he looks so cute and newborn-y (I’m trying to cling on for dear life to my little newborn!), and the whale print is SO beautiful and I think the little lamb sleepsuit is perfect for spring too. I just love them.

What are your favourite brands for baby clothes? If you have any that I haven’t mentioned or might not know about, leave me a comment – any excuse to online shop amiright?!

March 1, 2017

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WEEKLY CLEANING ROUTINE

Happy almost spring everyone!

So I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one that finds it next to IMPOSSIBLE to keep on top of their house once they’ve had kids. For something so small they take up a lot of your time! I’ve been finding in the past month or so that my house standards were really slipping, and it was starting to stress me out actually. Anyone else relate to getting stressed in a messy house?!

I decided to take action and make a weekly cleaning schedule. Making schedules is what I do best. Sticking to them? Hmm, not so much. But this one has HONESTLY been a life saver. I’ve taken on the principle of doing a tiny bit each day, literally no more than 15 minutes (for which time Lawson will happily play on his playmat/watch baby sensory/nap), and it’s significantly reduced my stress levels, and generally made my house look a lot better as well. I just find I’m prioritising it more, which I think was needed.

I recently made a video about my cleaning routine and was asked by one of my lovely viewers for a print out version. You can find the video here:

And not being one to disappoint, here is the ready-made print out version for you to use at your leisure:

I hope you find this useful in some way! I love making the house all lovely in time for spring.

If you have a cleaning schedule that works really well for you around the kids – I would LOVE to hear it. As I said, I suck at sticking to schedules. I give this one a month. Leave me a comment if you have any advice!!

February 22, 2017

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LESSONS IN MOTHERHOOD #3

In a couple of weeks time, I will be the proud owner of a 5-month-old baby. Seeing as the last ‘Lessons in Motherhood’ post was when Lawson was eight weeks old (where has my baby gone?!!), I thought I should update you on some more lessons I’ve been learning as a new mother.

1. You get mad prioritising skills.

If I thought I was amazing at prioritising tasks before (which I did), that is literally nothing compared to my aptitude for ranking priorities now. Or maybe my need for prioritising has just become a little bit more urgent. For example, pre-motherhood, a list of priorities would have been between going shopping, binge watching another Netflix series and taking a selfie for Instagram. Nowadays, that list is more along the lines of taking a shower, eating or napping. I just feel like my efficiency skills have skyrocketed to the max. I am now able to sterilise bottles one handed, make lunch one handed and generally juggle a multitude of tasks at one time. Ain’t nothing like motherhood to teach you that skill.

2. Your social skills take a dive.

Whilst my knack for prioritising may have increased, I’ve noticed this over the past month or so that my social skills have very much decreased as a result of motherhood. The perks of being on maternity leave mean that you can hang out with your friends pretty much anytime you want. However, is this quality time? Hmmmm, not so much. If I happen to be meeting a friend who also has a child, there will always be this kind of awkward silence when both of us are talking to our babies and trying to entertain them instead of talking to each other. Never experienced that before. And if I happen to be hanging out with friends who don’t have babies, I find myself zoning out of conversations wondering if Lawson is still alive if he’s in bed, or worse still, being completely distracted from conversations altogether if Lawson is with me. Again, never come across this before, but I feel like there is literally nothing I can do to remedy it. Baby comes first.

3. You’re a hormonal mess. Even after 5 months.

Have I recently been known to cry in the car to James Arthur? Yes. More than once. That song just gets me! **sings** just say you won’t let go… Lawson… etc etc. I never really thought of myself as much of a cryer before I had Lawson, I mean, I didn’t have a stone heart, I still cried at Marley and Me, but I’ve definitely noticed a distinct change in how easy it is for me to well up these days. Sometimes Lawson smiles… And I cry… Sometimes Lawson cries… And I cry… It’s not just once a month anymore, ladies, (although that time of the month is considerably more emotional than before too) It’s ALL. THE. TIME. Hormones – make friends, get to know them, because they’re not in a hurry to rush off.

4. The more aware they become, the more demanding they become.

Boy have I lived this the past few weeks. The first compliment people normally pay when they see Lawson is, “gosh, he’s so alert isn’t he?” to which I reply, “yes” through gritted teeth. My darling boy is so alert, and it’s beautiful to see him taking in the world around him and all that, but it also means he has discovered who mummy is. And sometimes that means he will scream the house down unless mummy pays him undivided attention all day. No breaks with this kid! Not complaining, I love spending time with Lawson, but I have noticed that he has gotten a lot more demanding the past few weeks. On a side note – kind of cherishing this – the kid bloody adores me.

5. Sleep does get better.

Yay! This is for future Hayley who has newborn number 2 and is feeling like sleepless nights will never end. Well, they haven’t ended completely, but they have got better. Lawson now normally only wakes once in the night, two times max. I remember when he was first born wandering round Sainsbury’s like an actual zombie because I couldn’t remember where any of the items I needed were. Those days, he would wake up 3-4 times a night. How I got through those first few months is beyond me. An unhealthy amount of caffeine maybe.

So that pretty much concludes my most recent lessons on motherhood. It’s a constant rollercoaster of things that get easier against things that get harder. But to tell you the truth, I am flippin’ loving it. There is no magic on earth like this.

February 14, 2017

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