Teaching a Toddler – Colours

Well August has been a terrible month for us. We have been sick with an awful cold that neither of us could seem to get over and a growing boy who is testing every fiber of my patience and the boundaries we have given him. For a kid who is only 18 months old he sure is acting like he has joined the ‘terrible two’s’ already.

Needless to say all my usual planning, prep work and routine has gone out the window and has been replaced with a fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants attitude and way to many grumpy days. Although to be honest most of the grumpiness has been from me and not Mr B, oh whom I kidding, all the grumpiness has been from me 😦

Anyhoo, spring has sprung down here in Australia and I’m determined to get over my grumps and move on.

We did get round to doing some afternoon activities. Our theme this month was all about colour, which was great cause everywhere you go you see colour. So every outing was a chance to reinforce what we were learning at home. Throughout each activity I pretty much just let my son do whatever he wanted and while he worked/played I would talk about the colours and what he was doing. Most of the activities were about fun and playing rather than about dedicated learning 🙂

Monday: Colour Wheel

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This was pretty easy to make. I took some plain paper and divided it into 8, then took some colour markers and coloured in the triangles. I then cut smaller triangles out of the scraps, coloured them in with the same colours and attached them to pegs with some tape. Since these activities only get used a couple of times they really don’t have to be very fancy or long-lasting. He loved this, but I think that may be more due to the fun of putting pegs on paper that the matching colours together.

Tuesday: Bicarb and Vinegar (OUTSIDE!)

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This activity speaks for itself and was lots of fun. We’ve done something like this before but it never gets old 🙂 All you need to do is add some food colouring to some vinegar and mix it with bicarb of soda then stand back and watch…or in my son’s case, get messy. I should warn you to put on crappy clothes as the stupid food colouring stained everything, which I knew would happen but I wasn’t prepared for him to literally sit in the middle of the path and then pour vinegar all overs his legs.

Wednesday: Colour paper tubes

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I took 5 pieces of coloured paper and tore them in half. One half I rolled into small tubes and just taped them closed while the other half I tore into 3 more pieces and scrunched them up into little balls. I then taped the tubes to our pantry door and placed all the little scrunched up pieces of paper into a small basket. We had lots of fun talking about the colours and placing the right colours into the tubes. I’m not sure Mr B understood that the colour of the tubes is what I was referring too as he still can’t identify colours but he can say all the right words, so we are half way there 🙂

Thursday: Matching sets.

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This is really easy to play and lots of fun, I walked around the house picking up different coloured items and putting them into his basket. Then I set out some butchers paper (seriously invest in some if you haven’t got any yet) and picked out items from the basket and asked him to match them to a colour. This really didn’t work at first but I think he got the concept by the last week although I wasn’t expecting him to get them all right at all. If you do this activity make sure you choose items that are predominantly that colour otherwise your kid might not get what you are asking of them.

Friday: Drawing

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Drawing is pretty new to us, even though I have exposed Mr B lots of times, he still hasn’t got the hang of it. I do all my prep work while he has his afternoon nap, that way I can put away other toys and it’s all ready for him. I drew small squares in different mediums (markers, crayons and pencil crayons) and gave him markers to try to match the colours. It was really fun and he loved scribbling everywhere, we have tons of sheets of butchers paper which I just stick to our coffee table with some tape so it doesn’t move while he is drawing.

Reading:

Reading is really important to me and my husband so we want to nurture a love of books in our children right from the start. When our son was first born my husband would read to him every night and we have kept that up ever since.

During the month we include books to our reading time with the theme we are doing at the time. Our local library is great when it comes to finding fun educational books however they are mostly for older kids and have a minimal range for young kids which is disappointing. But we love to challenge Mr B so we’ve introduced books that require him to sit still just a little longer and try to concentrate a little more, which are just a bit above his level. This means we’ve done a mix of difficult library and easy home books this month so he didn’t get frustrated with reading time.

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Teaching a Toddler – Zoo Theme

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To kick off our Teaching a Toddler series we did a Zoo theme through July. Although we don’t stick seriously to it, our days all have a pretty similar routine and these activities fit into our afternoon after a nap. … Continue reading

Teaching a Toddler

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Teaching a Toddler

So recently I’ve been inspired by some great teachers turned moms to be a bit more proactive with what I’m teaching Billy.
Once he hit toddler-hood I never really felt like I was doing enough when it came to teaching him even the simplest things like animal names or colours etc.

I started small by creating ‘invitations to play’. These were basically little scenes I would set up each night using the toys we already have. Mostly these were just things like a little farm or the train set and I would build the same little scene every night or whenever I was doing a little cleaning up. It helped me make sure I was rotating our toys regularly and keeping him interested in his toys.

Now that he has turned 15 months I have decided to up my game a bit and do more structured games/lessons. He is way to young to do anything for longer than 10 minutes, so I have kept the activities really simple and most importantly if he isn’t interested or doesn’t ‘get it’ I don’t push him or try force the game. Mostly I have to try to remember that this is not about me and my need to control every situation (I’m a way to much of an A type personality). The other thing I keep in mind when is that at this age repetition is key, so we reuse, redo and recycle most of our activities.

I have chosen to do a different theme every month. Not really for any other reason but the fact that it gives me a guideline so I can think up ideas, activities and outings.

Personally I like routine, I enjoy planning and packing what we will need the night before and that feeling of being on top of my day before it’s even started. If I forget or don’t do it for a few weeks I can see the difference in how I react to situations and how I feel a bit overwhelmed and seem to be a bit more short-tempered with everyone.
I try to menu plan every Sunday night so it’s pretty easy to know which snacks I’m going to pack and what we will be having for breakfast. Our day can start anywhere from 5:30 -7 am, although 7am wake up is very rare, we then have breakfast and have a play with whatever I set up the night before. Pretty much everyday we try to spend the morning out of the house, we are part of a few playgroups in our area and we meet up with some amazing other mommy friends that we’ve made. If we have nothing planned we might just head down to the part of go into town for a coffee. By about 12:00 we are home having a small lunch and heading to bed for an afternoon nap. I’ve been really lucky with how we do naps and B pretty much always sleeps for 2 hours (on really busy days it can be 3 hours). When he gets up from his naps we cuddle on the couch for about 15-30 min either watching ABC2 or just sitting together quietly while B wakes up fully. Then it’s on to our activities (which I don’t put any time limit/expectations on) and after that I start on dinner or if that’s all prepared already I might do some work while B plays independently. We generally have dinner at 6pm and its straight off to bath and bed afterwards which usually means B is in bed no later than 7:30.

This routine works for us and I try to be really flexible with it, it may not work for you or your child. Before he was 1 yrs we never really had a set routine I would always just take the days as they came or see how we felt. Some days I can tell we should just be having a day at home or he may be having so much fun in the back yard that we don’t end up going anywhere or doing anything else. But now that he is a bit older I have noticed that routine seems to suit him much better and he naturally fell into eating and sleeping at the same times everyday so I worked this out around him rather than try to change what he was already doing to suit me.

Is that really what I did?

I have the joy of having some amazing mommy friends in my life.  Some have kids the same age as my own, some that are older and some that are younger, which means they are a treasure trove of great advice and they always help me to not make the same mistakes they did. I love watching them interact with their kids, hearing the many different approaches to discipline and the many different ways you can show each individual child love. Watching them really helps me to see how I interact and treat my own son and I couldn’t be more grateful for them all in my life.

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However over he past couple of weeks I noticed something I do that is not helping the development of my son at all but I know no one has ever mentioned it to me  or pulled me up on it.

I’m a hover mom! Yip that’s right I hover wherever we go and even at home, my poor child can never learn something new or try something on his own without me being there watching, so called helping and even doing it for him.

Mr B has been an introvert from the day he was born and he has been my velcro child from day dot. So I’m not really talking about how he interacts with others or how long it takes him to meet new people or feel comfortable in the places we go and the playgroups we attend. I’m so very happy to facilitate that side of him and slowly help him to learn how to make his introverted personality fit the situations we find ourselves in, the other more dominant personalities we encounter or especially the larger groups we attend.

What I mean is that he just has to look at me while he is trying to figure something out or learn something new and I am at his side in a flash telling/showing him how to do it and very often it’s resulted in me doing it for him and him no longer wanting to play with the item or try on his own.

Argh how annoying would that be?
I never wanted to be a lazy mom and I was so careful to not be neglectful and I do try really hard to treat my son like I would any other person I come into contact with. I think its valuable and important to make sure I don’t dismiss children or the way they feel, even if I think he is being petty or silly. I’ve always wanted to be really supportive of him and everything he wants to do. We practices attachment parenting and neither my husband or I believe in letting a child cry and we don’t think it’s a good thing for them to do.
But what I’ve done instead is go in a complete other direction and not let him grow and learn on his own. I notice it more and more as he is getting older and as he is able to do more things and it’s really making me step back a bit and let him be.

Thankfully I’m not to late to change my hovering ways. Instead of rushing to his side when he can’t climb off something or can’t figure out how to complete a task I have a few techniques I have had to use that I’ve had to teach myself:

  1. I tell him I’m coming, count to 5 and take a breath
  2. I walk over and I ask him if he needs help (although if he is on something high I move close to him straight away to prevent any accidents)
  3. (depending on his level of stress) I talk him through the task and support what he needs to do.
  4.  (once he achieves his goal) I celebrate with him

For example the technique play out something like this:

He climbs onto the bed and can’t get down so he usually starts to call me or express frustration (which in his case comes in the form of throwing something he has in his hand or lying face down):

  1. I count to 5 and ask him if he needs me.
  2. I sit on the floor below where he is trying to get off the bed and I ask him if he needs help getting off. (I try and be really specific with my question so I know what he is trying to do), I usually try and do this until he responds to me in some form. He is old enough now (16 months) to say yes or no to a question I’m asking him and I find expecting and answer from him tends to stop the outbursts of frustration and bring him back to the task at hand. This may be different for your child so just try a few different things until you find what works for you. 
  3. I explain to him that he needs to lie on his belly and slide off or just keep sliding off on his bottom if he wants to get off the bed. I also usually say something supportive like ‘it’s okay mommy will catch you if you fall’. I try not to sound rushed, judgmental, frustrated or change my tone of voice too much and most of the time manage to keep a soothing tone if I can. Pick your moments to teach though, sometimes we are rushing out the door and it’s easier to just pick him up, there will always be another time to teach him with patience.
  4. Once he has managed to get down (sometimes this can mean holding my hand or jumping into my arms in this example) I give him a cuddle, high five or clap hands for him and say something along the lines of “you did a great job trying to get off the bed, I’m so proud of you for not giving up”. I try not to use general terms like ‘good boy’ or ‘well done’ because I don’t want him to look to me for praise at every turn but I want him to feel proud of his achievements and his ability to try  instead of searching for acclaim from others.

It’s been a hard pill to swallow, I hate looking at what I do and realising I’ve been messing up. But I guess that’s all part of being a parent  and it’s not like I can’t change my behavior and or that I’ve done irreparable damage.

In fact, for me, that’s exactly what being a mom to this little man is all about. Evolving, changing, growing as he grows and making sure I check myself all the time. I don’t want to ever be the kind of mom that ignores her kid or neglects his needs and growth but I also think its really important to not over do and hover over everything he does and every interaction he has with other children. He needs me but he doesn’t always need my help, and that’s ok too

9 Months!

Ok I know, I know, I am very late in creating this post! In fact so late that I think we are only a few days away from him turning 10 months… whoops.

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Anyhoooooo, so our little munchkin is growing up. A whole 9 months have just flown by since this treasure joined our little family. The best part about having him around is that I can with all honesty in my heart say that I love him more today than I did when we first met (as if that could be possible) and I just adore spending time with him.
I think I might be one of those ‘weird’ moms who doesn’t want anyone to babysit and sees no reason what so ever to escape from my kid even for an hour or 2. Hubby and I have this arrangement that he gets Billy all to himself at least once a week and I get to go do shopping or errands etc. and as much as I sometimes look forward to it, the second I walk out the door all I want to do is run back inside, scoop him up and take him with me.

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But enough about me, Mr B is growing in leaps and bounds, although still no crawling or walking yet, he is meeting other developmental milestones quite well. In fact I was incredibly worried about his lack of movement (especially compared to other babies his age) but the more research I did and the more I spoke to other mommy’s and our doctor, the more I can see that 9 months and only just starting the crawling/walking stage was actually the norm in the past and it seems in this day and age of pushing our children to achieve and trying to make sure they hit their next hurdle/milestone we are actually making most of those milestones earlier than they used to be…. although if your baby is already doing those things I’m not saying that there is something wrong with that.
What he is lacking in gross motor skills he is making up for in other ways. Be it as simple as calling me (with a very cute mumma) to come get him when he wakes up, to using his fine motor skills to pick up a blueberry with his thumb and forefinger or point to stuff when you ask (although this may not happen all the time, it really depends on his mood). He even knows that a cow says moo and can give me a “high 5”.
We’ve been on some fun adventures together like getting a zoo pass and walking around looking at all the animals, taking a road trip down to Ulludulla, quite a few picnics in the park and of course lots of playdates.
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He is also starting to enjoy more experiences like munching into some juicy watermelon on a hot day, moving from his little bath to a big bath and having his first shared bath with his beautiful cousins, realizing he is at a birthday party (the last one we went to he pretty much slept all the way through it) and of course lots of Christmas fun (which I will try blog about separately).
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But man he is a cutie and is starting to show us his wonderful little personality traits. He is cheeky and shakes his head for no when we ask him to stop doing something, if he can help us pack away his toys or if he wants to go to bed. And of course a smile that will melt anyone’s heart. As much bragging as I can do about this kid, we do still have our odd bad day and I know just how lucky I am to be able to say that it is a rare occasion to have any tantrums or screaming and crying in our home.

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In fact I think that the most growing and changing to happen in our home is with me! Even before I had kids I thought I knew exactly what I was or would be doing. I’d see a screaming toddler in a shop and immediately think to myself “oh no poor kid, its clearly the parents fault”. Now I want to walk up to all mothers and give them a big hug and just tell them it’s going to be ok… well maybe not all mothers, but I am definitely not little miss judgmental anymore and have opened myself up to so many more ideas, methods and journeys. I had this great idea about what I would do if I was in a certain situation or what was good for my future child, I would look at other parents and think wow you really know how to discipline your kid. Now that our son has arrived I’ve come to realize that this little person in my arms has a personality all his own, a future only he can choose, a life only he can live and I have no control and shouldn’t want any control over that. My job as his mommy right now is to love the heck out of him and be his home and his safe place. If he is having a tough time facing something, if he doesn’t want to do something, even if he doesn’t want to go to someone else and only wants me, I need to respect his individual self and treat him like I would any other human being who would come to me in need. Most people can tell me I am babying him but as far as I can see he is still a baby and needs me to do exactly that, as he gets older I’m sure I will have to change the way I approach certain situations but for now all he needs from us is patience and love (oh an food of course)!

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8 Months

So my darling son turned a huge 8 months old this week! Wow only 4 months to go before he hits his first birthday.
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He is growing so quickly day by day and its scary and wonderful to see each new step. He is such a wonderful son, such a joy in our lives and is developing his own little character. He has a gorgeous little giggle and it works up into a contagious laugh, its amazing to hear.

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This month we went camping for the first time, which was amazing. Billy loves the outdoors especially watching the trees and birds. He was enthralled by everything we did and saw. so wonderful watching him learn.

We also had our biggest scare when our angel had his temperature rise over one weekend to a very high 39.2 deg. But thankfully it was gone just as soon as it arrived and even though it took him a few extra days to stop being clingy I am just grateful his wonderful amazing little body could fight it off so efficiently.

So to my big boy, the love of my life (except you of course my darling husband), we are so happy to have you as part of our lives for theses last 8 months and can’t wait to see what you have in store for us 🙂

6 Months …

This was actually supposed to be a 25 week update cause working off calendar weeks he is only 26 weeks this week but according to his monthly schedule he was 6 months 2 weeks ago so what the heck I thought I would do it half way between and hope for the best… But then my darling little angel sprouted a tooth and I haven’t had a moment to myself so I could write!

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Our little man has grown in leaps and bounds this last month, from saying his first word to sitting up all by himself. And of course we are loving every minute of it!
As I said he has gotten his first tooth, so now I have a sooky, clingy, dribbling little angel! I must admit compared to some teething stories I think we got one of the easier bubs for this stage but its still hard to be needed 24/7! It is very strange to see such an obvious growth in his development though and he is really starting to look more like a baby than just a plain newborn and it breaks my heart a little cause he is growing WAY to quickly now 😦

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Probably one of the most noticeable achievements from this past months is his ability to talk. Whenever he wakes up from a sleep I greet him with a “Hi” or a “Hello”, now when I turn towards him the morning he smiles up at me and clearly says HI! Oh boy it gets my day started off in just the right way. Then we have had all the usual mumble jumble that comes with baby talk but we have also had the very clear “mumma” and “dadda”, although dadda is still said in a mumble jumble kind of way whereas mumma is said as one off words. So YAY mumma wins, not like this was competition or anything 😉 although I must admit after a weekend spent with daddy my Mondays are full of dadadadadadada, so I think I need to watch what Sean says to him when I’m not in the room! Flip is this kid gonna be a chatter box, just like his mommy! If he is happy he’s chatting, if his hungry he’s chatting, if he’s upset he is chatting…. There isn’t going to be much quiet time in this household and we love it!

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We have also noticed how strong he is getting. He can sit up by himself for a short while and just loves standing. In fact tummy time is pretty much a thing of the past because he would much rather be on his feet than lying down so we haven’t made much progress with the rolling over (oops). But I am sure once he is sitting for longer and moving around more he can get a handle on the whole rolling thing. It did have me a little concerned at first but he is so strong in other ways that I think he is more lazy than under-developed. Plus he is concentrating more often on his fine motor skills than his gross motor skills so we will just have to see what happens next. He has a great pincer grip of his food and toys and can control his hand movements so well.

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We’ve done a couple of firsts this month.
First Father’s Day, first foods, first painting, first beach outing, first words, first time sitting up alone, first time playing outside in the garden and first teeth and tomorrow is his first pool party with some of his friends. (In fact this kid has more of a social life than I do).

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But the most amazing thing that has happened this month is I have fallen more in love with him, I wouldn’t have thought that could really be possible!
I still love every moment with him, every feed, every cuddle, every cry, every moan, every new experience…. Everything about him makes my heart beat faster and my life feel fuller!

I love you little monkey man!

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20 Weeks

Ok so this post is a bit delayed. It was supposed to be ready for when he turned 20 weeks (he is now 23 weeks). But anyhoo…here is our beautiful son 20 weeks inside and 20 weeks out!
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He has definitely grown 🙂

Breast is best, especially for us!

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So I have bee meaning to write ths blog in time for breast feeding awareness week, but thanks to my little monster angel of a son it didn’t quite make it out at the beginning of the week but rather the end… Oh well this is my life now, all my well laid out plans up in smoke. But the smiles I share with my darling boy make up for the frustration my type A personality feels by the end of a week. But I digress, I want to share our breast feeding story so others who go through the same thing can find encouragement.

My little boy was born with a tongue tie and heart shaped tongue, from the moment he was laid on my tummy the mid-wives, who so wonderfully helped bring him into the world, watched him like a hawk. Their biggest concern was if he would be able to feed cause tongue tied babies usually have a problem manuevering their tongue in order to suck at the nipple. But our little man latched like a champion although I don’t think its as strong as normal cause I can pull him off really easily and he dribbles out the side of his mouth, however it’s never been an issue!
But then my milk came in (for any preggie ladies reading, you start with colostrum for the first few days and only on about day 3/4 do you get your full milk…colostrum’s the good yellow stuff). That’s when our struggle started, it flowed into our poor child’s mouth like niagra falls!
He would pop of gasping for air and my milk would squirt in all directions (mostly on his little face). It really bothered him and me and would make feeding quite stressful for us both. Especially the evening feeds when he was tired, we would both just end up in tears. My nipples we starting to hurt and he couldn’t cope with the large amount of milk my breasts were making so they we becoming way to full and engoured, and I kept getting small lumps (which I think was mastitis).
In between feeds my breast would fill up and he wouldn’t be hungry so they would just start leaking everywhere and fill up a breastpad in seconds. Then at about 3 months it all started to change, my milk started to regulate itself and I started to panic that I wasn’t making enough for him and he was always hungry. I even. Started him on. Solids at 4 months thinking he was hungry, but we ended up stopping cause he wasn’t quite yet ready. Gratefully that was not the case, all that was going on was my body (and this always amazes me) had started to figure out how much he needed and had adapted to that.
So panic averted he was still getting plenty and was even adapting his drinking to the speed at which it came out meaning our feeds only take about 7mins on each side.

For anyone struggling with the same problems, hang in there! Don’t give up feeding, breast really is best for your little one in fact we now aren’t rushing off to feed him solids at all cause the more research I have done the more I am convinced that feeding them anything to early other than breast milk can actually not be helpful to them at all.

What helped us through this time:
1. Speak to people about it, you aren’t alone!
I found this the most useful, we are lucky enough to have a breast feeding support group run by the midwives here in our area and they were fantastic. They gave me plenty of hints and tips and made me feel quite at ease about all the stuff I was worrying about. Also try and find a group of like minded mums groups or just a bunch of mums with babies and with the same issues so you can off load, have a cry and get some hugs from.

2. It is a big deal!
I felt awful for complaining or talking about it, I would often hear things like “oh how I wish I had that problem”, or “that’s nothing to complain about”. But you know what it was a big deal to me, having Billy crying and not eating stressed me out and concerned me. Just because it wasn’t the worst thing that could happen when breast feeding doesn’t mean it’s not a problem. I know we were lucky and I know other people have it worse than us but its all relative and if its bothering you don’t let people bring you down or make you feel like you shouldn’t talk about it… It is a problem!

3. It’s gonna be ok.
Right now it’s hard, you feel like you could tear out your hair but it will all come to an end and you will both be ok. It’s hard to look to the future when you are struggling with the now but there is a end in sight and once you both figure out what you are doing you will instantly notice the difference. Looking back I can now pat myself on he back and say “see, I told you we would get through this”. You will be able too as well, just hang in there.

4. Do what works for you.
We were given lots of advice, some worked some didn’t. We stopped doing what didn’t work and kept doing what did. Here are some of the things that we were told…
* Lie down or on your side when feeding as this helps slow the flow down. (This didn’t work for us but it might for you)

* Once you feel your let down pop the baby off and let the heavy flow run into a towel until its not as strong and then pop your bub back on. (This really worked for us and little Billy now does it himself)

* Express milk between feeds or just before a feed so that you don’t have the let down when your baby is drinking. (This worked well but we heard different views it. One being that your body will think your baby needs lots of milk cause you are expressing so much and will not regulate itself accordingly. That would be great if you need the extra milk for when you go back to work but since I am staying home for at least the first year we didn’t keep this one up. It did however help a lot when my breasts filled up between feeds and it was uncomfortable to lie down and sleep)

* Part of having such a strong flow was that Billy was getting extremely gassy from gulping it down so we we advised to burp him during the feed. So he would feed, I would feel the let down; pop him off (always remember to break the seal first or you will have raw nipples); let the flow out into a cloth and sit him up for a burp (don’t force it though, if they don’t burp it’s fine). Once it’s normalised pop him back on and let him drink again. Offer the other breast and do the same for that side then once you are finished feeding lay the baby down for a minute or so gently raise him into a sitting position or upright against your shoulder (the higher the better when we did it) until the trapped wind is out. This worked wonders for us and he now burps himself during or after a feed.

4. Breast feeding is truly best!
Now I know not everyone can breast feed and I understand that if you need to move onto formula or someone else’s breast milk (which I fully support) then please don’t feel like I am saying you have failed as a mum or as a parent. You as a child’s caregiver needs to make whatever decision is best for the health and well being of your child, family and you.
For us however I felt like breast was (and still is) best and reading up on it I can see why. The nutritional benefits of breast feeding far out way anything else you can do check out why here.

5. Connecting.
I have found breast feeding invaluable in creating a bond between Billy and I. Whenever he is on me he stares up at me, laughs, plays around and generally feels better for not only having something to eat but having the warm comfort of being on my lap and getting a cuddle from mom. This isn’t going to last forever so for now I will take it whenever I can.

6. Relax.
Sit in a quite room, no distractions for you or your baby. Get comfy, make sure your arms feel supported. Don’t be in a rush or make your baby feel like they need to rush. Always drink water before or during and if you need it have a nice healthy snack on hand like almonds or an apple. Get your darling baby settled and ready, take a deep breath… Now another one. Look down at your precious bundle of joy and smile. Then try and feed. This was my routine on a good and bad day and boy did it make a difference to baby and my frame of mind. Don’t forget your baby can sense your emotions so if you are stressed they will be stressed. This doesn’t help anyone 🙂

Some resources :
http://theleakyboob.com/
https://www.breastfeeding.asn.au/
http://hm4hb.net/
http://www.babyledweaning.com/

Obviously there are many more resources out there so do some research if you need it especially when pressured to stop beast feeding by family etc cause its nice to be able to lovingly and calmly explain the facts and health benefits and these links only skim the top, but hopefully it helps.

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Billy is now 5 months old and going strong. We still have days when breast feeding takes a lot more work and he is now getting easily distracted so a quiet rooms is very helpful. His latch still isn’t super strong but he feeds great, sometimes when he is really tired we still have issues with feeding him and when he is done there is milk all over his gorgeous little face and it dribbles down his cute squishy cheeks. But we a getting there and so will you and we aren’t planning on stopping till he wants to.
Stay strong, stick to your guns and chat to a professional, try not to listen to too many old wives tales or the pressure to give up. Most of all GOOD LUCK, you and bub are both learning something very new so have patience and don’t forget to smile 🙂

My never ending story

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I found this pic on Facebook recently and it really rang true for me. When I was expecting and planning for our beautiful bundle of joy I imagined teaching him to sit/talk, doing crafts with him, watching him grow and learn new things and basically knowing by instinct what being a mom is all about.
What I wasn’t expecting was the monotony, the same routine day in and day out, the large amount of nappies I would be changing and washing, the forever feeling of tiredness and mostly the cleaning/washing that builds up and then finally gets done only for it to take a few hours to be at a some what critical level again.
Now please don’t get me wrong I love this little man and am enjoying all his milestones and it was me who chose to use cloth nappies and homemade wipes. But dammit I feel like a stuck record lately… Walking round the house thinking “didn’t I just do this yesterday, or was it last week?”

It’s frustrating and annoying. I love being busy and I always thought when I had children I could keep up with my own fun activities (I am a baking, crafting, sewing, creative loving wannabe) and still be a fun, cool kid focused mom. By alas so far that has not wrung true for me at all. I find my days merging into one another and by the time the weekend rolls in I can’t believe a week has passed me by and I haven’t done any of the things i wanted too or even left the house (I am ashamed to say sometimes I haven’t even changed the track suit pants I have been wearing all week… Baby boy is just gonna throw up/pee on the clean pair anyway!)

The saddest part of this monotony is I sometimes don’t feel like I spend enough time teaching Billy what he needs to know to progress, learn and develop as he should. I feel guilty almost everyday that maybe I should have spent more time talking to him or doing tummy time… I blame the internet for this, there are so many articles and advice on what you should do to give your baby/kids the best start they can have and now I compare myself to all those creative, perfect mums who think up all these cool things and do so many wonderful things with their kids! I kick myself and then try do some interacting with him but don’t know what I am doing so feel stupid and inadequate, I then put him to sleep and look round my house and kick myself for not using my time better and cleaning/cooking/fixing.

So does my never ending story end? Who knows, but hopefully as our babies become toddlers and our toddlers become children I can at least add a few more variations to the days and build on my knowledge! I guess that’s the best I can do for now 🙂