Monthly Archives: December 2012

Exercise Challenge

Inspired by these fellow bloggers, marriedwithtwins and atlantamomofthree, I have taken on the December health and fitness challenge as I need to build up my physical strength and lose a bit of weight (a little late, but better late than never).

My goal: power walk for half an hour four times a week (it should really be seven days a week, but I’m cutting myself some slack until after the holidays).

So here we go…watch this space for progress reports!

The Invisible Work

Oh so true. SAHMs may make it look easy to outsiders…but it’s a heck of a lot of work, as is obvious when, as Mandy writes, the ‘invisible work’ is not done.

Ad Hoc Mama

Because I’m the primary caregiver in this parenting partnership, half of what I do goes unnoticed and unappreciated. Usually it’s the mother who stays home with the kids, or only returns to work part-time or on flexi-time, and the mother who becomes the expert on her children and home.

Sometimes, I hate it. I really, really hate it. Because it’s so easy for me to shoulder the load that there’s a perpetual slide, so on days like to today something small happens, like Sebastian not going down for his nap on time while I am out, and I totally lose the plot.

I lost the plot today because if Sebastian doesn’t go down for his nap on time then I have to decide whether to wake him up before he’s had enough sleep and deal with a nightmarish toddler for the rest of the day, all so he can go…

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Is it time for bed yet?

Many baby books stress the importance of a bedtime routine – and with that I have to agree. I have my own bedtime routine (considerably altered post-babies) and it seems only fair that the children should have one too – it signals to them that the day is over and nighttime has begun.

For us, the bedtime routine is bath, milk, story, bed.

When you bring a newborn home a bedtime routine doesn’t seem terribly important – you’re up at all hours anyway, there is no real difference between night and day. But (hopefully) there will soon be a difference as baby sleeps for longer stretches at night (and eventually really long 10 – 12 hour stretches) and at that point you need to consider – when does nighttime begin?

It might seem a daft question, but if you have a parent(s) who works late, you might be tempted to have a later ‘bedtime’ so that a parent who has not been around during the day can have some special time with baby at night – in our case, this would mean starting bath around 9pm, and nighttime effectively beginning at 10pm.

Well, we tried it. It was ok. Multidaddy was thrilled to see BabyBoy and BabyGirl. But the day was very long, and the babies were cranky and had very disturbed evening sleep. Starting the night at 10pm didn’t mean BabyBoy and BabyGirl slept later in the mornings – it just meant their night was shorter.  Continue reading

Today I am a sister, not a mother

Today I found out that my younger sister is getting married. And while this does not mean that I can neglect my mummy duties, it does mean that I have been temporarily thrown back into an old mindset.

My sister and I were always close, until last year. In fact, I didn’t realize until a while after BabyBoy and BabyGirl were born just how far apart we’d grown. I thought it was because my hormones had apparently turned me into a nightmare. I have now found out that she feels that my pregnancy put her life on the back-burner. She feels that she couldn’t get engaged while I was having the babies. And she blames me, with anger, for that and for ‘making’ our parents pay attention to me while I was pregnant and adjusting to motherhood (the first time in literally years that I have needed some parental help).

I’m hurt, and angry myself, by the way she has somehow managed to make me the reason for the delay in her engagement. Heck, I was pregnant, but why should that have stopped her? We all would have been happy for her – I think her fiancé is great. I’m also very upset that she has withdrawn from BabyBoy and BabyGirl because of all this – she has shown no interest in them over the past few months.

And I hate the change.

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A new mummy’s wardrobe

Winter has arrived and with it a new stack of clothes. The winter additions to my ‘new mummy wardrobe’.

Pre-babies, I never left the house without heels. I had a collection of handbags of different sizes, colours and materials. Most of my clothes were work-attire (suits) or going out outfits. Jewelry was an elaborate affair, featuring long necklaces and earrings.

As a mummy, all that has changed. My pre-baby wardrobe is now reserved for those occasional baby-free evenings. My clothes now have to withstand being pulled and stretched, long hours playing on the floor, and continuous trips to playgroups. Dry-cleaning is out – clothes need to be able to be thrown into the washing machine if covered in milk or worse. Shoes have to be comfortable and safe enough to carry and run around after two mobile toddlers. Beautiful handbags have been replaced by the ever-present diaper bag. Jewelry has been put aside as it only represents a new shiny toy to be tugged on by little hands.

After the first few weeks of motherhood (during which I spent a lot of time in / near home), it became quite clear that most of my beautiful clothes were completely unsuited to life with babies. I also had no time to think about putting outfits together or accessorizing. As spring approached I realized that what I needed was effectively a ‘mummy uniform’ – a set of clothes that were both baby-proof and, crucially, all matched; so that if a baby spat up on a top I would simply need to change it for another one in my wardrobe that I knew would go with the bottoms I was already wearing.

So here are my tips for creating a ‘new mummy’ wardrobe that is both functional and ensures that you look good, no matter how many times you have to change in a morning:

1) Enlist the help of a babysitter and go shopping alone. It is much easier to think without two babies competing for your attention.

2) Find an whole outfit (top, bottoms and extra layer for warmth) that works and fits you well. For my spring / summer wardrobe, this was jeggings, t-shirt and cardigan. Ensure all items are machine-washable. Trousers or long skirts are essential if you don’t want to run the risk of a wardrobe malfunction while playing with your children on the floor.

3) Buy multiples of those same tops, bottoms and layers. If you buy different colours, make sure they all match on all different combinations (e.g. if you have bought trousers in dark blue and black, your tops could be bright blue, orange, and green). The number of each item you buy depends on how often you do laundry.

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Nursing Nightwear

I’ve had many different nightdresses throughout my pregnancy and breastfeeding days. But the ones with the most longevity have to be Mothercare’s Blooming Marvellous Maternity Nightshirts.

These are not the most flattering, but they’re 100% cotton so they’re cool and easy to wash. They have front poppers to allow you to feed (no fiddly clips to try and maneuver with one hand while holding on to a newborn). They are airy so they won’t rub against a healing c-section scar. And they cover you up (unlike strappy ones) , so you can get out of bed and lounge around the house knowing that should the doorbell ring unexpectedly or your father-in-law happen to traipse past you don’t have to struggle into your dressing gown with a wriggly baby screaming the place down.
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