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Tag: Love

#MumisBest Guest Post – Aleena from Mummy Mama Mum!

#MumisBest Guest Post – Aleena from Mummy Mama Mum!

Welcome to another instalment of my new guest series #MumisBest!  #MumisBest is all about the ever-growing SAHM/working mum debate.  I really want this series to highlight that there’s no right or wrong way, but whatever works for you and you family.  If you’d like to take part do get in touch, I’d love to hear from you!  For now I will leave you in the hands of Ali from Mummy Mama Mum!

Before I had kids I would have definitely described myself as a workaholic. In many ways this hasn’t changed, but the nature of what I do most certainly has!

When I fell pregnant with my first child, Amelia, I knew that I definitely wanted to return to my full time job running a busy retail business, and I knew that I wanted to return full time. I mean, my business was my baby, and even the thought of handing over he reigns to someone else for 6 months brought me out in a cold sweat. Even during the first week or two after Amelia was born, I was itching to get back. When the time finally came around, I was eager to get back to real world, and eager to get back my salary and main breadwinner status. 6 very long and painful months later, I called the regional director on Friday and told him I wouldn’t be back on Monday.

It was both the hardest and easiest decision I have ever made. I felt like I was giving up on a part of myself, and I suppose in a way I was. But I was also creating a very new story for myself and my family, mainly one that actually involved weekends together! I didn’t last long being out of work completely, and ended up taking on a trainee position at the nursery that Amelia was enrolled at. The training has now ended, and I am now a fully qualified Early Years Teacher, which has opened up a whole host of new doors I hadn’t even considered previously.

I worked part time while Amelia attended nursery, until I very suddenly fell pregnant with Wills. I knew that I would return to work again after he was born, but I have to say that this time the lead up to my return was very different. I felt an actual desire to stay at home full time, especially as maternity leave the second time around was when I had started my blog. But return I did, and I must say it wasn’t as catastrophic as I had feared it might be. The washing still gets done, the dinner still gets cooked (batch cooking is most definitely my friend), and we still have lots of time together.

But it is all set to change again! At the end of July, we are moving over 100 miles away from our current home! While Mr C is able to take his job with him, I unfortunately cannot bring the nursery with us! This means that, as things stand, I will once again have no out-of-the-home paid work. I will be a SAHM once again, and while I dreaded it the first time around, this time I’m ready!

I have my blog to keep me focussed and driven, which is what I feel was missing after Amelia was born. And I think that just about sums it up for me; it doesn’t matter what you choose to do, as long as what you choose works for you. After 3 years of trying out pretty much everything, I have finally worked out that it’s not necessarily work that I need, but something that keeps me driven to succeed (aside from the kids, obvs!) That has now taken form in my blog, and I’m suddenly much less interested in dragging my un-makeupped face out of the house in the morning!

Work, no work, SAHM, WAHM, running around the forest barefoot mum! Just do whatever works for you and yours! Forget all the titles that came before; forget about being a stay-at-home-mum or working mum, or any of the others – focus on being a happy mum with happy kids. That is all that matters in the end.

 

You can see more from Aleena here!

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The Day My World Stood Still. Well, Nearly.

The Day My World Stood Still. Well, Nearly.

Blogging, writing, social media and emails galore. Sound familiar? I’m not moaning, it’s the theme tune to my life and I love it. However, since I found myself on this path I don’t think I’ve downed tools for even a day. I’m always conscious of deadlines, I squeeze work into my day any which way I can and when it’s finally time to go to bed I work for a couple more hours. You know, for good measure.

Well this week something amazing happened. I scheduled all content, put down my phone, closed the laptop, packed the kids into the car and took the whole day off to enjoy being a family. OK I’ll admit that I did have a few sneaky checks of my phone, completely cold turkey was probably a bit of a big ask! For the most part though I just enjoyed some time out, knowing that work would still be waiting for me when I got back.

I’ve written so many times about how taking a break is one of the best things to make your business thrive. It seems I’m not very good at taking my own advice. I’m always banging on about how refreshed a bit of time out can make you feel and how it can give you the motivation to crack through a load of work when you get back to it, I fully believe it too. So I just can’t work out why it’s taken me this long to act on it!

So what has taking a break taught me?

 

  • That the world won’t implode if I don’t reply to an email in 30 seconds flat.
  • That the day goes by in less of a blur if you take some time to enjoy it.
  • That my concentration improves markedly after taking some time out.
  • That going to bed at a reasonable hour once in a while is necessary.
  • That the world looks much prettier when you aren’t looking at it through a camera lense.
  • That I love my job and a break is necessary if I want to succeed!

 

It turns out that taking a break isn’t a bad thing at all. In fact it’s completely necessary for each and everyone of us to stop what we’re doing once in a while and take stock of where we’re at. I’ll definitely be taking another break sooner rather than later, all work and no play makes Zoe a very dull girl!

 

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Is the Key to Success Self Doubt?

Is the Key to Success Self Doubt?

Ever since I ventured into the blogging world I’ve been bugged by my own self doubt. Wait, who am I kidding? I’ve ALWAYS been troubled by my own self doubt. I suppose blogging has just resurfaced old feelings, now that I’m constantly tip tapping them down for all to see.

Becoming a blogger brings with it a lot to think about. Obviously there’s the workload, which you don’t realise is so hefty until it’s too late. Once you get the blogging bug, there’s no going back.  Then there’s the feeling of exposure, when you think about who might be reading your stuff. What do they think of it? Is it any good? At some point, every blogger I know has had a crisis in confidence and has thought about closing their laptop for good.

In a strange way though, blogging has also given me a much needed boost in confidence. I wouldn’t have dreamed that I would end up being a blogger and a writer when I was in the early days of motherhood. It took everything I had to function daily, never mind to consider building up a brand new business with very limited technical knowledge. As time went by though I knew I needed something more. I dipped my toes into blogging and quickly realised what amazing possibilities lay before me.

I think that living with a lurking aura of self doubt can be the unexpected key to our success. Apart from the drive I have to be a someone in the eyes of my children and husband, I want to prove to myself that my demons aren’t in control of my future. Every time I get the feeling that I’ve taken on too much or I get anxious about looming deadlines, I turn that negative energy on its head and convert it into ambition. OK not every time, but I try to ignore the bad feelings and replace them with good. I do my best to ignore the voice that’s telling me I can’t and I amplify the one that tells me I can.

I’ve never had a passion for my work life before I found blogging and writing. I’ve always just gone through the motions. Yes I’ve built up a business before, but I didn’t care much for what I did. Now each morning I get up with fresh ideas, ready to power through another day of doing what I love!

 

So, if living with self doubt is what I have to do to make a success of myself, so be it. I’m only human after all!

 

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#BabyLove My Toddler Life – Children’s Book Review

#BabyLove My Toddler Life – Children’s Book Review

We love reading over here at The Tale of Mummyhood HQ. We have a library to rival the the best of them, so when we get the chance to review the latest children’s books we jump at the chance!  This week we were sent #BabyLove My Toddler Life, written and illustrated by Corine Dehghanpisheh, not only was it fun to read to our girls but it also sends an important message to us adults!

Corine Dehghanpishe is a award winning author and My Toddler Life is the second book in her #BabyLove series, after the first instalment My Social Life. My Toddler Life is based on a little boy who finds his mums phone and goes ahead and uses it without her say so. We’ve all been there right?  However when she explains quality time is for playing and having fun, not for using smartphones, it really hits home how much time we spend on our devices and how much we miss because of it!

 

Author & Illustrator Corine Dehghanpishe

 

Corine has illustrated the book beautifully. It’s bright and colourful, which is perfect for keeping the littles interested and wanting to find out more! I personally love that the book is so current, in that it’s based around our love for the hashtag and our technology. I also love that it relays the subtle message that even though we all use our tablets and phones, sometimes we just need to put them down and live in the present moment!

 

If you’d like the chance to win your own copy of #BabyLove My Toddler Life, all you have to do is enter our giveaway using the form below, please do take a peek at the terms and conditions…good luck!

 

 

#BabyLove My Toddler Life Children’s Book Giveaway

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#MumisBest Guest Post – Pam’s Bake and Baby Blog

#MumisBest Guest Post – Pam’s Bake and Baby Blog

Welcome to another instalment of my new guest series #MumisBest!  #MumisBest is all about the ever-growing SAHM/working mum debate.  I really want this series to highlight that there’s no right or wrong way, but whatever works for you and you family.  If you’d like to take part do get in touch, I’d love to hear from you!  For now I will leave you in the hands of Pam’s Bake and Baby Blog!

Be yourself, Be happy.
When I got married at 24 I didn’t want a family, but as I approached my late 20’s I felt a pull to be a mother. Now at 32 I have a 3 year old son and a 1 year old daughter. For a while I couldn’t quite believe that this was my life. In fact shortly after having my second child I freely admit I had a ‘what the hell have I done’ moment!

I went back to work after 9 months maternity leave both times. I work in the rail industry and the option for flexi time or part time hours wasn’t an option, so I went back full time – 48 hours a week. I work 12 hour shifts days and nights and although it sounds horrendous it actually means that I get a lot of time off and more time with the kids than if I worked a mon-fri job. It means that we need less childcare as I work weekend and evening so husband is able to cover a lot of it.

Before I had children I would complain about the shifts, about how tired I was working such long hours. Now I don’t have days off. I have two children and a house to look after but much less time to deal with everything. I won’t lie it can be a struggle. And after my first child I took a while to get into a routine. There were tears, arguments and struggles. But now me and hubby are on the same page. He is super supportive of my choices and pulls his weight at home (most of the time!). I can’t stress how important this has been and understand this is not the same for everyone.

I shock a lot of people when I tell them that I enjoy working. When I was at home on maternity leave I felt like a huge part of myself was missing. I struggled to find a happy place and (this still makes me cringe to say but) I felt unfulfilled. Being a stay at home mum wasn’t for me. There I’ve said it. It is the hardest job I can imagine. There is no salary, no bonus for meeting targets and no appraisals to let you know how to improve.

I recently wrote a piece about ‘mummy guilt’ and what everyone thinks about everyone else. Working mums tend to look at stay at home mums with envy. They falsely believe that the mums at home are in their pjs until lunchtime, watching telly then doing incredible crafty, fun mum stuff with the kids every day. They are jealous that the stay at home mums get to attend school events and can seemingly do what they like. Stay at home mums look at working mums and are insanely jealous of their freedom. Freedom to have  a break, go for a pee in peace and get an actual lunch break. They would kill to be wearing something other than mum gear and to have something else on their minds.  Then you have the part time working mums. They have a bit of both sets of guilt. Guilty that they feel they aren’t able to give their all at work in the hours available. Guilty they aren’t doing enough at home. Guilt is a bitch!

We are also bad at hating on each other. In the last year I have heard stay at home mums say they can’t believe that a mother would want to work full time – why bother having kids? Is a statement I hear a lot. Working mums are similarly as bad at dishing out the insults, branding stay at home mums lazy. Why can’t we respect each other more!

Last year I had a breakthrough after I admitted that I enjoyed working. Instead of apologising for doing what was best for me, I am embracing it! Being a working mum makes me happy. But I have also came to the conclusion that we will never ‘have it all’. Whatever you choose then chances are you will have to sacrifice something. And that can be ok as long as you accept this.

To the working mums out there, feeling torn in two I salute you. To the stay at home mammas rocking motherhood, I salute you. To the mothers not having many good days with the littlies, they will get older and leave home someday so I salute you. To the mums waddling though with their eyes half shut I salute you!
There’s no need to be superwoman – that role is old! Be yourself, be happy.

Bio.

Pam Lorimer
32
Wife of 8 years-been with hubby for 15 years since i was 17,my first love!
Mother of a 3 year old boy and 1 year old girl.
I work in the rail industry and have done for 11 years now. Previous jobs include a chemical technician in a cheese factory, a mental health support worker and a waitress.
I started blogging last year as a way of getting some writing out there. I have written on and off since I was a teen but never seem to have enough time lately (never dedicate any time to it!) So the blog has been the perfect platform to express myself and I have met so many supportive men and women through it.

You can find more from Pam here!

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BusyLizzy Family Club, Baby and Toddler Classes with a Difference – FREE CLASS

BusyLizzy Family Club, Baby and Toddler Classes with a Difference – FREE CLASS

What do you think of when you hear ‘baby group’ or ‘toddler class’? Does it send shivers down your spine as you picture the chaos of old school groups, where none of the toys are working and the tea is tepid at best? If so, then I have the answer to your prayers! This week I’ve teamed up with Busylizzy Family Club, to showcase their new and revolutionised baby and toddler groups for the under 4s.

 

What’s on offer?

Busylizzy split their classes into three different groups; baby classes, mini classes and active tots. Each group offers the correct level of activity for the age group. therefore bringing out the best in your little ones from the outset!

Baby classes – these classes are specifically designed to provide a calm and supportive atmosphere for you and your little one. You can choose from a range of music, baby sign, baby massage and yoga among others. With so many different activities to try out, there’s no chance of tedium setting in!

 

 

Mini classes – these classes are aimed at children in the early stages of toddlerdom. You and your littles can choose from a variety of classes including mini Monet art classes or mini explorers with obstacles and excitement galore as well as many more. All of these classes are designed to teach colour recognition, counting and coordination. All in a fun and multi-sensory environment!

 

 

Active tots – these classes have been created with the older toddler in mind. Busylizzy have an amazing range of classes including languages, music, drama, ballet and yoga to name a few. All of these classes give you the chance to join in with your little ones and it gives them the perfect opportunity to let their wonderful characters shine through!

 

Mummy Fitness

Postnatal fitness is a great way to regain your confidence in the months after giving birth. That’s why Busylizzy offer the bee’s knees in mummy fitness classes! Depending on the type of workout you’re after, you’re free to choose from aerobics, yoga, pilates and buggyfitness to name just a few. The best bit? You take your little one along with you! There’s no need to worry about childcare and it offers perfect bonding time for mum and baby.

 

How are Busylizzy different from the rest?

The beauty of becoming a Busylizzy member is that is offers an incredible amount of flexibility when it comes to choosing classes. Your schedule does not have to be set in stone, one week you might enjoy a little ballet and another hip hop might tickle your fancy. Busylizzy offers a unique approach to attending classes, allowing you and your family to pick and mix at your leisure!

As parents themselves, the guys over at Busylizzy also appreciate that life doesn’t always go according to plan where children are involved. For this reason they give you the option of cancelling and rescheduling your classes up to as little as two hours before it begins. This also means that paying for classes whilst you’re on holiday is a thing of the past!

As well as all of that, Busylizzy gives you the chance to meet and socialise with like minded parents. Having a baby can be a daunting time, but surrounding yourself with friends can make you feel much less alone!

 

Do you fancy trying out a Busylizzy class completely FREE of charge? Find out where your nearest class is HERE and claim your spot today!

 

 

*This post was written in collaboration with Busylizzy Family Club.

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Fours ways to Drop Hints you want to become Engaged

Fours ways to Drop Hints you want to become Engaged

You can’t really complain when you’ve been in a relationship with your partner for a few years and are now living together. Yet, something seems missing. Could this be the fact that you’re ready to become engaged, though your other half doesn’t appear to have given it a thought?

If that’s the case, marquise engagement ring stockist Angelic Diamonds has four ways to make your boyfriend aware that you want him to pop the question:

Be honest

The simplest method can often be the best in this scenario, so just have a chat with your partner about where you would like your relationship to go. It needn’t be an awkward conversation; just discuss with your partner why you want to get married and he should soon start to understand just how much he means to you. Sometimes people have the same fears and doubts within a relationship, but they are just too afraid to address them with each other. By talking about your future together, he’ll know that you want to be a part of it.

Become your partner’s go-to guy

Does it feel as though you and your boyfriend have assigned roles in your relationship? It’s time that you become your other half’s go-to guy as well as girlfriend then. If you’re constantly being left behind for the guys, then this is going to put a strain on his ability to propose and take you seriously.

Try to take an interest in his hobbies, for example, or arrange to exercise together whenever possible. If you can be part of his whole life, rather than just someone he spends time with, then he’ll feel like you’re indispensable. Once you get to this point in your relationship, then he’ll feel like proposing, as he can’t spend his time without you!

Arrange things with married couples

Your partner could be reluctant to ask for your hand in marriage because of being worried or anxious about married life. Try to resolve this by hanging around with friends who are happily married, as well as family members who also have children. This will make him realise that you’re comfortable with him being around others in more serious relationships.

The ups and downs of married life will likely be exposed when you hang out with married friends and family members, but at the very least if should also get your boyfriend picturing a wonderful married life with you. Although men who have parents that are divorced sometimes struggle to trust this commitment, replacing negative feelings with positive ones in this type of environment may help to bring him around to your way of thinking.

Try some tough love

Have the nice methods failed? Then it may be time to be cruel to be kind in order to take your relationship to the next level. If you don’t see your relationship heading in the right direction, and things are flatlining, try and find his pulse again by telling him you may move out.

That might be too dramatic an approach for some. If this is the case, use a different approach and make a decision like changing careers or going out with your friends more and don’t ask for your partner’s advice beforehand. Although he knows that you’re always there for him, this will make him feel that he isn’t being as included as he should be, and he’ll start to wonder why. Keeping him on his toes in this way will make him realise that he needs to put the effort in (by proposing!) so that he can get your undivided effort and attention in the future.

 

*This is a collaborative post.

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Sleeplessness, Dancing and Buckets of Rain

Sleeplessness, Dancing and Buckets of Rain

Today has been a miserable day.  Hubs headed back to work after a few days off, leaving me to solo-parent two under two.  The rain has been torrential and the littlest of my brood refused to nap, not even a wink!

Now usually I rock parenting two so young. I’m no expert and far from perfect, but over the past two years I’ve had a lot of practice.  I’ve become adept at entertaining two children at once and I’m the master of diverting attention, to derail a tantrum hurtling towards me at full speed.  Please don’t get me wrong here, I’m not saying my children don’t throw tantrums, just that I’m a quick learner and I’m all for saving myself.

Today though I found my patience wearing a little thinner than usual.  My lack of a nap time breather due to said child who doesn’t need sleep, meant I found myself mentally running for the hills.  We’ve all been there, those days when bed time feels like it won’t ever arrive.  Instead of running for the hills though, I scrabbled to get them in the car before the rain soaked us all to the skin, to get the older of our girls to dancing.

My daughter loves her dance classes, mostly because parents have to get involved.  So she’s able to laugh at my two left feet, moving incredibly un-rhythmically across the village hall. My by this point overtired and irritable second child, sat in the wings cheering us both on with her wails of displeasure at being confined to the pushchair to watch.

It’s become apparent that having two toddlers in the house means bickering is a given.  Even at their young ages they have found ways to wind each other up, they can go from best friends, to mortal enemies and back again in record time.  So our subsequent supermarket dash, saw the littlest repeatedly trying to kick her sister in the head from the trolley baby seat.  Wonderful.

However, despite the sleeplessness, dancing and buckets of rain I can’t help but feel content with our little life.  Hubs and I have created two perfect little devils, for every argument there are twice as many laughs and more love than you can measure.  As they say, the days are long but the years are short.  Things won’t be like this forever and when they change I know that there’ll be so much that I’ll miss.

If I take anything from today, it’s that being on the ball 24/7 just isn’t possible.  Raising little humans can be incredibly trying and all we can do is our best in any given situation.  I’m not going to advise that cherishing every moment is the way forward, that would definitely make you superhuman.  What I will say is that if you look hard enough, there’s often a little good in most situations and focussing on that might just get you through.

 

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Reflections as my Littlest Turns One

Reflections as my Littlest Turns One

I’m struggling to believe that a whole year has passed since the littlest of my girls was born.  This time last year I was waddling around waiting, not so patiently to be induced.  Excited to meet our second born and even more excited not to be pregnant, after carrying my first and second for what was very nearly eighteen months straight.

My labour progressed very quickly after being induced and in the early hours of the morning, in a birthing pool the littlest arrived after just one push – this is to date one of my proudest parenting moments!  I remember my midwives being really relaxed with me as an ‘experienced’ second mum.  I’d only had ten and a half months practice though, so this definitely didn’t feel like the case.

 

 

Fast forward a year and here I am, a mother of two and armed with enough experience to write a book.  Hubs and I feel like it’s been one of the hardest and one of the most amazing years of our lives.  We’ve battled with endless sleepless nights, first steps and first words. Twice over!  Hubs had a career change and I went back to work, both were difficult decisions but ones that were right for our family.

Going on our first holiday as a family of four was real highlight.  It was the first child friendly holiday we’ve ever been on and we loved it.  Maybe it was the hot tub on the veranda that swung it for us?!  Truthfully, we found that holidaying with littles was absolutely knackering but enjoying our time together was bliss!

 

 

Christmas was such a happy time too, we had a fun-filled day together and couldn’t see the carpet for presents.  Our living room still looks like a toy shop, there are so many I just can’t contain them anymore!

Now we are heading into the Summer with two toddlers.  I don’t get to sit down for more than five seconds at a time and I can’t remember the last time I drank my tea hot.  It’s set to be an amazing year full of milestones and the making of memories!

 

 

So, Happy Birthday Littlest!  Thankyou for being the amazing, funny and lovable little girl that you are.  You’ve made our family complete!

 

 

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Love the Life You Live

Love the Life You Live

It’s human nature to look at a perfect Instagram feed and immediately assume that person’s life is better than your own.  Its part of our make up to compare what we have, to the person who seems to have it all.  It’s estimated that the average person spends one hour and forty minutes browsing their social media pages each day.  How much of this time do we actually enjoy though, and how much of it do we spend beating ourselves up?

Social media is an outlet for many people, it allows them to be whoever they want to be.  Instagram allows us to take images, crop out the mess and apply that filter that makes us look like we just stepped back into our teenage years.  Facebook allows us to check ourselves into those swanky cocktail bars, where the images we post show us having the time of our lives.  When in reality, we don’t really want to be there.  We are knackered from chasing around after the children all day, we don’t really like the people we are with and we definitely could have done without spending that money.

Social media portrays perfection.  It’s a liar, perfection just doesn’t exist.  My favourite social media feeds are the ones where imperfections are celebrated.  The ones that don’t hide the fact that the house is upside down and the toddler has dinner on her t-shirt.  I love the ones where the bad is celebrated along with the good, proving that we aren’t always living the high life.

Looking through another’s feed often leaves us feeling down about our situation.  It leaves us with a yearning for more, for better than what we have.  It’s so easy for our confidence to be knocked, by assuming that life behind the lens is as ideal as it seems.

If we delve deep into our hearts to find out its true desires, often we are holding onto them for dear life already.  We have love, we laugh, we have a roof over our heads and food in our bellies.  We watch our children sleep peacefully at night and we have everything.

Social media is fun, but letting it get under our skin is dangerous.  Step back, take stock and love the life you live.  Regardless of how perfect you think someone else’s life is, take time to realise that you’ve already made it.

 

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