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Trust Your Instincts – Even If You’re Wrong

When my daughter was ten months old, after a particularly restless night with her awake every hour, I stood in my kitchen like a zombie preparing my three year old son’s breakfast. He had also woken up a couple of times that night. I was wrecked. My daughter was sitting at my feet digging around in the “tupperware” cupboard, keeping herself entertained.

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The Problem With Participation Ribbons

Anger, disappointment, rejection, jealousy, embarrassment, the whole range of negative emotions are all are perfectly normal part of life. And we need these things. Life is light and shade. We wouldn’t have any context for happiness if we were never sad.

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How Much Housework Should A Nanny Do?

Are you thinking about hiring a nanny and you're not sure what is fair to expect from them in terms of housework and cleaning. What outside of caring your children can you ask your nanny to do?

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Why our family is leaving Australia

I’ve written before about how my adverse childhood experiences have made me the person I am, the mother I am. Mothering in a foreign country, similar to my own but far from my origins, has been challenging in practical and financial ways.

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Conflicting Advice New Parents Need To Hear

conflicting advice

As a new parent conflicting advice can be a bit overwhelming. It can start from the hospital - ever shift change a different midwife comes in with a different opinion about how exactly you should be doing everything. Especially if the advice people are giving you goes against your own opinion and instincts.

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It’s Not Your Fault That Your Baby Doesn’t Sleep

Several times in the depth of bleary-eyed, sleep deprivation a hideous thought would occur to me:Both of my children were terrible sleepers - maybe I am the cause of it. I seem to be the common denominator here. And it also seemed like EVERY other baby in the world was sleeping better than my baby. I felt like it was all my fault.

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Larissa Waters Breastfeeding – The No Win Situation For Women

support breastfeeding

Larissa Waters Breastfeeding In Parliament Shows the No Win Situation For Mothers   Larissa Waters does yet another breastfeeding first https://t.co/A5a18083VE pic.twitter.com/BXMh7vYH5M — Karen Barlow (@KJBar) June 22, 2017   First time I've had to move a Senate motion while breastfeeding! And my partner in crime moved her own motion …

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When Mothers Regret Motherhood

The Project recently aired a segment about mothers regretting becoming mums. Which has naturally a divisive topic. But I think it’s an important topic to allow people to talk about. 

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Lifting Cars – A Story Of Parental Strength

Lifting Cars and Other Stories Of Parental Strength We’ve all heard the stories of parents in a moment of crisis being able to use seemingly super human strength to save their children. There are urban legends of mothers lifting cars off their children so they can be pulled to safety. …

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The Upside Of Having A Bad Sleeper

“What?!” I hear you gasp, at the very thought of there being an “UP” side of having a bad sleeper. Well, yeah, there are some. At least for my little boy.Elliot is now coming up to four years old, and up until a couple of months ago, we had next to no routine. No matter how hard we tried to get this little guy to go to bed, and stay asleep, it was just not happening.

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Pumpkin Butter Chicken Recipe

As promised - this is my new and improved “Butter Chicken” recipe. I’m putting “butter chicken” in quotation marks at this point because I feel like I’ve altered this so much that it doesn’t exactly resemble the traditional dish.

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Maybe Baby – Another Baby Is Only In My Dreams

maybe baby

Maybe Baby People ask me all the time if we’re planning to have another baby, and I usually laugh at the thought – of course not. No. No no no. Absolutely not. I don’t want to go back there. Pregnancy, birth, breastfeeding – all behind me. Thank goodness for that! …

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Phone Calls Are Scary – I Hate Calling People

Phone Calls Are Scary I hate calling people on the phone. Hate it. I get a little heart racing panic every time. Whether it’s calling the mechanic to book my car in for a service, or calling my mum to ask if she can babysit the kids. I hate that …

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9 Awesome Mother’s Day Gifts For Under $20 From Kmart

Mother’s Day Gifts For Under $20 From Kmart Mother’s Day is right around the corner and if you’re looking for some simple Mother’s Day Gifts that won’t break the bank then I’d suggest heading to Kmart. I really think that with Mothers Day gifts it’s the thought that counts. Even …

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All I Want For Mother’s Day 2017

As Mother’s Day approaches I’ve been looking around trying to come up with some ideas for when my children (or really - my partner) ask me what I want the kids (him) to get me for Mother’s Day 2017.

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Code Camp – My Kid Is Learning To Code

So late last year my son came home super excited that they were starting to learn about coding in his computer class at school. Kid was in Grade 2.The first thing he did when he got home was turn on the computer, and show me this video.

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Breastfeeding Mother Asked To Leave By Kmart Store Manager

  A Queensland mother was allegedly told to leave a Kmart store on Saturday, by a store manager, for breastfeeding her 3 month old son. A group have organised a “Flash Mob” to raise awareness and show their support for breastfeeding mothers. What Really Happened There seems to be some …

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Cost Of A Free Education In Australia

In Australia we have a free public education system. But it’s easy to forget that our children’s education is apparently free when we open up an invoice for $800 for two children attending public school. That’s not really my definition of free.

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” How Do You Breed Babies ”

My youngest asked me last night "Mummy, how do you breed babies?" Hilarious phrasing. I’m going to thank Minecraft for that one. On Minecraft she breeds her sheep, cows, and dogs. Most of all the dogs.

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Stupid Things People Say About Breastfeeding

breastfeeding

I’m not sure if it’s because I breastfed my kids for an exceptionally long time (Nearly 8 years in total!!!) so people had plenty of time to comment on it. Or if it’s because I have “Hey, please tell me how to parent” stamped on my forehead.

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5 Tips For Breastfeeding In Public

While it’s easy to say that mothers should be able to breastfeed anywhere, anytime, it can be a bit daunting breastfeeding in public spaces. Especially in the early days.

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Homework: How much is too much or too soon?

I hate homework. I hate homework more as a parent than I did as a student (and trust me, I wasn’t a fan of it then either). I’d even say I hate homework more than my children do now. HATE it. Yet, I still attempt to enforce it at home.

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5 Tips To Get To School On Time

have a confession to make - I’m usually the parent hurling their kids out of the car onto the footpath in the drop-and-run zone as the bell goes at 9:00am (give or take a couple of minutes!) It’s a rare morning that my kid doesn’t have to run to class.

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Benevolent Neglect : The Beauty Of Boredom

“Mum, play with me.” My eight year old moaned. “You never play with me anymore.” (He means since I played UNO with him this morning.)I do play with my kids. I actually play with my kids a whole lot more than my parents ever played with me.

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Confession: I Think I Have A Favourite Child

The Favourite Child Apparently most parents have a favourite child. We just don’t admit to it. It’s the darkest of all our secrets – the kind of information we should take to our graves. Whenever anyone brings up whether or not we have a favourite child we should respond with …

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Christmas Day Away From Extended Family

If I could do anything for Christmas this year (or every year for that matter) it would be load the family up on a plane and fly to the Gold Coast to spend the holidays with my Grandma, Aunts, Uncles, and Cousins. But unfortunately four return flights at that time of a year are simply impossible.

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Stop Asking Me To Work For Free

This isn’t just something that happens in the blogging community. This happens to basically everyone in the creative or arts industry. We’re expected to work for experience, for exposure, for trade - but not for money.

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IKEA Christmas Guide – Gifts For the Whole Family

ikea gift ideas

Christmas and Ikea are two of my favourite things, so naturally combining the two is simply magical to me. This year I set myself a challenge - that I can find something for EVERYONE at Ikea (or at the very least every age group. If there's absolutely nothing that appears to you in all of Ikea, then bah-humbug to you!)

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How To Throw A Great Children’s Party

party food

Avoid food that requires more preparation than “Open packet. Dump on tray.” If you absolutely must serve something you felt like you actually put effort into, slap together a fruit platter... then you can feel like you've offered a healthy alternative to put next to the sea of chips, lollies, and chocolate biscuits.

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All I Want For Christmas Is You

all I want for christmas is you

The Year A Christmas Carol Broke My Heart *Content warning* Discusses difficulty conceiving. One Christmas, several years ago I was walking through a shopping centre with my son who had just turned 2 years old. There were decorations everywhere and Christmas Carols were playing continuously. Overall it was a lovely …

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Lansinoh Breastfeeding Gift Pack

lansinoh

When my son was first born I didn’t really know much about breastfeeding. I knew I wanted to breastfeed, though I didn’t really think much about it. I didn’t do any breastfeeding classes, or even read much about breastfeeding. I’d figured that breastfeeding would be just like giving birth – …

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Gifts For Teachers

gifts for teachers

As the end of the year approaches we all start to ask that particularly painful question. “What are good gifts for teachers?”It’s a hard one! Because while we adore, admire, and appreciate the people who dedicated the year to teaching our children

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Parents with Prams Parking

parents with prams

So, I’m basically the worst kind of person. I’ve done a terrible thing. I parked in the PARENTS WITH PRAMS parking and then put my toddler in a shopping trolley. I didn’t even have a pram in the car that day! When I returned from grocery shopping I found this note on my car:

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Finding The Best Pet For Our Family

best pet

We are currently looking for the best pet for our family. I’ve wanted a pet for the kids for several years.I grew up with pets. I’ve had practically every kind of pet. Dogs, cats, birds, fish, rabbits, mice, rats, guinea pigs, chickens, a lizard and even a couple of yabbies called Cherax and Destructor.

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Pinky McKay Is One of my Favourite People

safe cosleeping

It’s totally a fan letter. It’s weird because obviously she doesn’t know me, but I feel like she’s been there for me for years. She’s been my backup. My support team. My cheerleader. She’s been a source of wisdom to me.

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Learning to Accept Help

helping each other

I find it hard to accept help. I’ve never been very good at it. I am a proud person and hate feeling “needy”. I am the eldest of 6 kids and learned fairly early that I needed to be independent and self sufficient;

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Pokemon Parents, GO!

pokemon go

We’ve been playing Pokémon Go for a couple days now, and my 3.5-year-old loves it. I can’t help but wonder if she likes it because, on some level, she’s somehow identifying with the game. She knows what it’s like to not necessarily want to be found

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The Importance Of Having A Good Cry With Your Children

crying

I am just going to be honest and throw it out there and say that over the last 4 days we have watched A LOT of television.More than we normally would, as both my daughter and I have been struck down with a nasty virus that saw us trapped and housebound for what seemed like an eternity!

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Breastfeeding is Different For Everyone

breastfeeding

Here ends another World Breastfeeding Week for me. I cannot believe I’m still breastfeeding. I really thought last year was going to be the very last time I celebrated World Breastfeeding Week as a nursing mother.

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I didn’t Cherish My Babies And That’s Okay

cherish babies

I love babies. I’m ridiculously excited when my friend are pregnant and even more so when the baby arrive. I fuss, I knit them blankets that take me 40 hours, I love the smell of babies so much that even milky newborn baby spew smells good to me.

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7 Attachment Parenting Myths

attachment parenting

There is a lot of myths and misunderstandings about what Attachment Parenting is and how it works - usually from people who haven't really looked into what Attachment Parenting is or how it works.

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Breaking Down the Attachment Parenting Baby Bs

attachment parenting

I’ve heard people say things like “I basically do attachment parenting, except I don’t breastfeed” or “I like the idea of Attachment Parenting, but I don’t feel comfortable with bed sharing”. That’s could still Attachment Parenting!

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35 No to Low Mess School Holiday Activities!

cleaning out the kids toys

I'm sure I'm not the only person spending school holidays at home, we have no plans aside from a few play dates and a sleep over scheduled in, so I have a lot of time to fill in and a very busy 5 year old to keep entertained. I also don't feel up to every day doing painting, baking, having paper cut up all over the floor and whatever else messy craft and activities strewn all over my floor for me to clean up. Especially when little miss two year old is pretty capable of making an enormous mess of the house on a daily basis, I'm trying to save my sanity at the same time as keeping the kids happy. Sounds like a plan, right?

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In Defence of Star Wars Episode 1

star wars episode I

Star Wars Episode 1 is popular in our house in a BIG way. The kids want to watch it all the time. So maybe it's not such a bad movie after all.One of the proudest, most exciting moments for me and a parent has been sitting down to watch Star Wars series for the first time with my kids.

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My Super Nanny : A Perfect Match

my super nanny

When it comes to finding the right nanny for your family it’s essential to find someone who is a good match for your families needs, values and expectations.In my experience as a nanny that compatibility was the most important aspect of any job. It is an incredibly intimate working relationship ­ a nanny practically become part of the family.

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You Can’t Get Back Lost Sleep

lost sleep

Yesterday was a particularly long day. It started at 3 am where my little girl woke up and simply could not fall back to sleep. I’d only gone to sleep just after 11 pm myself. She’d already woken up briefly at 1am, so my 4 hours sleep had already been broken.

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Why Fed IS Best

fed is best

So apparently there’s some controversy behind the simple statement: Fed is Best.It’s a take on “breast is best” and in three little words it acknowledges all the different way we can feed our babies that might be best for our circumstances: breastfed, formula fed, tube fed, mix fed, cross fed, supplemented feeding system fed and so on…

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Ants In A Vacuum Cleaner

ants

I was doing a little bit of housework while babywearing with my baby girl in a carrier on my back.I turned on the upright vacuum cleaner and as I started to work on the living room floor two bullants dropped out of the vacuum onto the carpet.

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The Self Fulfilling Prophecy Of The Useless Father

useless father

Is your newsfeed constantly flooded with “jokes” about how fathers need to be micromanaged to care for their own children? Or how men generally incapable of parenting, housework and keeping themselves alive? That men are irresponsible and essentially additional children?

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I’m Not The School Mum I Thought I’d Be

school mum

On some subconscious level I’d assumed that would be what being a school mum looked like for me. I’d be a super involved helpful parent. I’m pretty crafty, I like being helpful, I studied teaching so I assumed I’d be the first to put my hand up as a classroom helper. I imagined I’d be an organised and shining example of what it is to be a “School Mum”.

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How To Support Breastfeeding

support breastfeeding

Breastfeeding is natural and had kept the human race going since the beginning to time, but that's not to say that it's easy and something we all just pick up easily the first time we do it. It's a skill that both mother and baby have to learn.

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Medela – “Motherhood is different for everybody”

medela

I was recently involved in filming a clip for Medela - "Motherhood is different for everybody".I was so nervous with filming that it sounds like I was about to cry and I discovered I'm not destined for a life in television given how utterly wigged out I was by having a camera rolling.

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Please Is Not A Magic Word

please is not a magic word

I have a little bit of a bone to pick with the word “Please” as it’s snuck its way into my house lately and it’s getting on my very last nerve. “Please” is a nice enough word in itself, it’s reasonably innocuous, but when it’s used as though it has power, then it starts to grate on me a little.

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Ergobaby Adapt Review – Perfect For Newborns

ergobaby adapt

I’ve been enthusiastically recommending Ergobaby carriers for the last 7 years as it's the most comfortable, easy to use, versatile and long-lasting carrier I've ever tried, and the Ergobaby Adapt is now the carrier I would recommend above all others.

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Anxiety As A Blogger

blogging

So, in the last month I’ve only published one thing written by me. I don’t know if anyone has actually noticed - and it’s totally okay if you haven’t - I’ve gone to some effort to conceal my “writer's block”; frequently posting amusing memes on social media and sharing guest articles.

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Being A Stay At Home Mum

stay at home mum

Being a stay at home mum comes with both its blessings and its challenges. The things I did not realise before becoming one was that not all SAHM’s are like the ones we see on TV. All mothers make choices which cost them in different ways, this is my story and what I have sacrificed.

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Where Were The Parents!? They Ask

where were the parents

Firstly, the picture goes viral because the vast majority of parents are sitting behind their computer screen going “ahahaha, yeah, been there, done that” OR at the very least can go “Oh, I totally can see how that went down”

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Is It Okay To Call Your Child An Asshole?

is it okay to call your child an asshole

I recently read a blog post by a blog ModernLifeWife31 titled "It's NEVER OK to call your toddler an ASSHOLE" and it keeps popping up in my Facebook newsfeed so I feel like I should form some kind of response to it.

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Chapter Books For Early Readers

chapter books for early readers

Yesterday I asked my friends on Facebook one little question and the response I had was amazing! So incredibly helpful I’d feel selfish keeping it all for myself.

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7 Reasons Child-free Friends Rock!

child-free friends

Child-free friends do often get a bit of a bad press. They don’t understand what it’s REALLY like to be a parent, which occasionally leads to them giving us advice about how we should raise our children based on how they imagine parenting will be with their theoretical future children.

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To My Dear Deprived Second Child

Deprived Second Child

You recently asked me for a photo album containing pictures of yourself for your birthday, because you’ve become increasingly aware of the fact that there are multiple albums and picture frames dedicated to your brother - and not one hard-copy photograph of you.

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Our School Morning Routine

school morning routine

7:30am - Mr 7 year old appears beside the bed and immediately starts telling me something about minecraft. No “Good morning Mum”, no “Hey Mum, are you awake?” just “Did you know, on Minecraft, that Stampycat built a sky island?

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Reasons I cry

mummy tears

I never used to be a teary person. I might get a little lump in my throat watching a particularly touching movie, but I never used to cry much - unless something was really actually wrong - and definitely NOT ever “It’s so beautiful” crying. Nope. Not me.

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Christmas Shopping with a Child

Christmas Shopping with a Child

Firstly - don’t.It’s a bad idea.You know it’s a bad idea. You know you’ll never get away with it. No matter how clever your ninja skills are, or how incredibly well you plan it - they’ll look, they’ll know. It wont work.

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Christmas trees for toddlers

oh christmas tree

With my youngest it apparently has some kind of calling beacon telling him to just touch it. When he started wanting to touch things on the tree the play pen was erected and it kept our tree safe for a year.

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Mediocre Parenting Is Actually Pretty Good

mediocre parenting

Today I’d like to give a big shout out to Mediocre Parenting or “Good enough” parenting.If you’re a regular reader of my posts you'll already know I’m often supporting parents just doing whatever they think is best. Or the best they can at the time.

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Common Misunderstandings About Local Adoption

local adoption

There have been times when it has taken every ounce of my being to not slap some people, in the face for the things they have dared to ask us – but I am pleased to say that up until the point of writing this, I have been able to hold it together, and my record remains clean!

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I Just Can’t Get Enough Sleep

can't get enough sleep

I want to tell you something. I feel like you will understand, even if you aren’t in the same boat. Why? Because what I want to tell you relates to a desire that we all have. Something we all want.

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School Readiness – Is your child is ready for school ?

school readiness

Starting school can be daunting (for both child and parent!) at the best of times. Of course, as parents, you want to set your child up for success and independence as they start their educational journey. But how can you tell if your child is ready for school?

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Uh oh. What happened????

Ultrasound

Within MOMENTS, before even the fluid had reached the other end of the visual window, that line came up. It was DARK. It was definite. There was no squinting involved. No inverse colours on the phone. It was all too clear.

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Inviting Parents To A Child-free Wedding

child-free wedding

This topic is almost as divisive as breastfeeding vs bottle feeding, cloth vs disposables and cosleeping vs cot-in-another-room-from-birth, all rolled into one.Is it okay to invite parents to a child-free wedding?

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In The Deep End – Learning to swim

boys swimming

My eldest who is now 6, had done swimming lessons from mid last year, to the beginning of this year. He loved it. Followed instruction pretty well. But couldn't focus or hold on to wait his turn as the instructor taught the other 2 children in his group.

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6 Reasons Why I Wear My Toddler

babywearing toddler

My youngest baby is 2 ½ and has been carried in a sling or carrier of some sort since she was a newborn. I wanted to baby wear with her for a number of reasons.

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Rewards, Incentives and Bribing Children

bribing children

But I do have some reservations about bribing children to behave in a certain way. I'm not going to say do it or not do it. I'm in no way an expert at parenting and I'm absolutely not an expert on YOUR children, I can only share my thoughts based on what has (and hasn't) worked for me and MY children.

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Dads Are Parents not Babysitters

dads aren't babysitters

Referring to dads as “helpers”, “babysitters” and anything else that implies that they aren’t actually parenting their own children, that they’re just standing in for the mother for a few moments, is not a good thing.

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So… I wrote a children’s book…

writing a children's book

I went for “inspiration” for blogging and ended up sort-of-but-not-really self publishing a children’s book within about 48 hours of attending the class. I had already written it about a year ago and I had most of the pictures sketched; it just wasn't in book form, it was a pile of paper I had stashed in my wardrobe.

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Things I Suck At As A Parent

things I suck at as a parent

There’s lots of things I’m good at as a parent - there’s some things I’d even say I’m great at. I’m a pretty good mum. I'd like to think I can be a fun mum, I'm a patient mum, I'm an affectionate mum... but there's still a lot that I suck at as a parent that I'd like to share with you today.

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Bloggers with a Potty-Mouth

submit your article

I recently read a blog post titled "You Don't Need to Use Curse Words in Blog Posts" and I was surprised that I had a lot to say on the topic, despite the fact I don't really ever swear - while blogging or in real life.

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Future Me’s Problem

future me's problem

I like to think of some healthy and interesting food to give my son, as we all do. I get all ‘Jamie Oliver’ on the recipes at the start, and forget about ‘future Kelly’ (I am Kelly, by the way….just to clarify and not get you confused halfway through this read).PAST KELLY is the effortless Mother of the Year.FUTURE KELLY IS the one that has to clean up all the freaking mess!

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6 Things I love About Smaller Homes

things I love about smaller homes

Yesterday we put a rental application in on a house - a whole house - that has easily twice the space of our current home, and I’m crossing all my fingers and toes that we are accepted. It has two living rooms, 4 bedrooms, and more cupboards than I’d know what to do with!

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