June 2012

The Mummy Midwives and Parkfit!

So, this week I decided to try out ‘Parkfit’ in a bid to keep my never ending quest to lose weight going. So I dug out my sports bra (flipping heck they are difficult to get on – or is this just me?) laced up my trainers and put Oscar in the buggy  and off I went. I went with my lovely neighbour and her little baby boy, we both agreed to do it together! Parkfit in Cheltenham is held at Pitville park and run by Kirsty and her team, it happens on a Monday lunch time (1pm til 2pm)

Following a brisk walk to the park we arrived at the entrance to the pump rooms and started chatting to the other park fit mums, everyone was lovely and made us both feel really welcome. We were soon straight into it as we start jogging round the park, Oscar starts immediately laughing at me, probably due to my Darth Vader breathing technique and cherry red face, but I carry on. There was every level of ability there at the session, mum’s who had been doing parkfit for months and were running with ease, all the way to those who were doing it for the first time and everything in between. Everybody seemed to be really enjoying it, the babies in large either looked confused as to what we were all doing or were laughing (that might have just been Oscar!) The main thing is that we are all doing it together and that is motivation in itself to keep going. Kirsty showed us lots of different exercises during the class, some using the buggy and in some she put us in little teams, the variety made it really interesting.

Today has made me realise 2 things, 1) how lovely other mums are and 2) I seriously could do with improving my fitness level! Everyone was really  lovely and Kirsty was a great instructor. She helped out with watching the babies or rocking the prams and she was really encouraging and supportive whether we were running or doing circuits. I really enjoyed it and I will definitely be back next week for more!

It can be really hard when your body has changed so much over the course of pregnancy and birth, often the last thing on your mind is exercising when you are so busy getting to grips with being a mum. But you also want to fit back into that pre pregnancy wardrobe, maybe tone up a little and look amazing in that new dress the you have just brought! Whatever the reason, the benefits are huge. Just doing an hour out in the sunshine today, watching Oscar smiling away at me has put a real spring in my step!

I am not however looking forward to the ache that tomorrow will bring…. what’s the saying…. no pain no gain?

So go on girls, dust off your trainers and give park fit a go! You can contact Kirsty for more info by looking at her website:

http://www.trainwithkirsty.co.uk/fitness-classes/parkfit/

The Mummy Midwives & Economummy



Some would say that being a mother is the hardest job in the world and I have a tendency to agree.  However, I’ve found being a Mummy and running a business even harder.  You’re in charge of keeping so many plates spinning that every now and again, one accidentally drops and smashes.  I believe that when babies are created, Mother Nature does something quite unusual and delivers you a lifetime’s supply of guilt.  I’m constantly feeling guilty about everything I do… anyone else out there feel like this?  Naturally, I want my business to be a wonderful success and for women all across the land to feel empowered and informed about their babies and childbirth… but I also want my children to feel that I’m always there for them.  After all, I am doing this for them – to be able to give them nice holidays, treat them to meals out, support them through their education – according to the man on the news it costs £218,000 to raise a child to the ageof 21.  But I do wonder how I achieve the balance of working to achieve success and being a good mummy. I think the key word there is ‘good’.  I mean, no-one tells you that you are a good mother.  Maybe they should, maybe someone from a big important office in London needs to come to my house (preferably with warning so that I can hoover and buy nice biscuits) and assess my mothering skills.  Maybe then if I had it written on an official document, ‘You are  a good mother’  I would stop with the whole guilt thing.  My husband tells me that children are a product of their environment and ours are happy, smily, loving kiddies… so maybe I am getting it right!

Meeting the other lovely mums in business that make up ‘Economummy’ has really helped.  For those of you who are wondering, ‘What the heck is Economummy?’ Well, it’s a fabulous group of mums who all have their own small businesses based in Cheltenham.  It’s run by a very lovely lady called Hayley and it’s entirely her idea.  We got involved with Economummy about 3 months ago and have found the support really endearing.  Meeting other mums who appear to be spinning as many, if not more, plates as me makes me feel better somehow.  It’s inspiring to learn about what made them come up with their business models, how they over come the challenge of working from home with the children or advertising their businesses on a really small budget.  This results in some very creative and clever ideas.  Working with Economummy gives us the opportunity to put ourselves and our business out there for the general public to see by utilising the Economummy ‘Mums on the High Street’ events.  They involve all these small business taking over an empty unit in a shopping arcade and showing the public what we have to offer.  The range is amazing, from  jewellery  to eco friendly toys, from buggy cleaning to baby slings, from books to natural products… everyone unique and run by a mum.  So if they can all do it, then so can we.

I think that all mothers experience an element of guilt for all sorts of reasons.  Like I said, Mother Nature just gives it to you (like periods and spots) and all ‘good’ mothers do the best that they can with what they have.  So if you’re reading this and thinking ahead to returning to work after your baby arrives, or you’re spinning lots of plates, then just remember that there are lots of mums out there across the nation achieving great things – so you can too!

 

You can find out more about Economummy and The Baby Journey at http://www.----escape_sem_autolink_uri:35f29b370c2e871afe50968ed1cef62d----economummy.com/directory/3043/all/the_baby_journey/ plus all the other amazing businessesthat are involved.

Mummy Midwife & the First Year

So here at The Baby Journey HQ we are celebrating a very special week. This week our little poster boys – the bundles of joy that started The Baby Journey magic turn one.

It’s hard to believe – people told me to enjoy it as time flies by, but I didn’t really pay attention. And now my little one is celebrating his very first birthday.

Amidst working out celebrations and making birthday cake plans I have been reminiscing about the last year. Looking through his memory book, photo albums, height chart, and thinking back to this time last year when he hadn’t even appeared in our lives. We talked to my bump, giggled when he kicked, imagined his little face and who he might look like. We bought new furniture and a pram, and relished practising with the pram in the hallway and working out what we might need in the pristine new changing bag.

I can’t believe how little he was, the photos amaze me, and hearing my friends talk about their first few weeks with their new babies I can suddenly remember those early days……. wondering what to do when he cried and we’d tried everything, being confused over who’s advice to take on feeding problems (thank you to my wonderful sister who helped me through those first few feeds and knew what it was like), being stunned at how so much poo could come from someone so tiny and get all the way to their shoulder blades, feeling exhausted, disorientated, euphoric. It was a wonderful and challenging time.

My first day going out on my own with the shiny new pram was a turning point. My other half had gone back to work and I was a new mum alone facing the perils of kerbs and inclines. Horror of horror it rained and I had to navigate my way around a rain cover – a task which required advanced mummy skills in itself (I ended up sheltering in a shop and waiting it out after a miserable attempt to get the flipping thing on) but I managed, and my little dot with the big eyes looked up at me and I knew we’d be okay.

Once I was out and about and had worked out the baby-friendy spots in town I wanted to get back in touch with the world. I wanted to learn what to do with my new baby to help him learn and grow and sleep and to keep me in touch with the rest of the human race, as well as give me a target to get myself dressed, him dressed and fed, (and redressed and fed again) and then out the house. I also realised that I was searching for the holy grail of other mothers’ knowledge as it had helped me before.

Luckily I stumbled across something which I fell in love with – baby massage.

Every week I went along (with my amazing friend Jules who somehow managed to complete a school run into the bargain!) and we would lie the boys next to each other on towels, naked as can be, and learn massage techniques which they loved. It was a wonderful intimate time very week, and my little one loved it. He would look up at me and I would marvel at this tiny perfect little baby before me – and feel very proud of him and brimming over with love. After the session all the babies would nod off in their prams, relaxed and soothed, and us Mummies would get chance for a coffee and chat – it was fab.

As time went by all the babies grew (as they do) and were soon rolling over to grab something, craning their necks to see who else was there and what was going on. They were less peaceful and more inquisitive, and wanted to be more active – the magical days of peaceful baby massage were dwindling, and it was time to get busy!

I will continue to enjoy daydreaming about my little boy’s first few weeks this week, as he scampers about mischievously and I get ready for the arrival of family to celebrate his first big milestone. I hope that you are enjoying imagining the arrival of your little one, or are confidently navigating your way through their early few weeks, or looking back at when your not so little ones were little with fondness.

Mummy massaging baby feet

 

The Baby Journey offers new baby workshops at The Queen’s Hotel, Cheltenham on the last Friday of every month.

These include a full session of baby massage taught by a qualified instructor, family first aid, and new mums fitness….. as well as a chance for coffee and chat with other new mums and The Baby Journey team in lovely surroundings.

The next one is on Friday 29th June from 10.30am til 1pm, and costs £25. Book your place through our website, e-mail us, or give us a ring. 

Get in touch and let us know what you think – your experiences and thoughts, we’d love to hear from you….. find us on:

Email: hello@thebabyjourney.co.uk

Here on our website: www.thebabyjourney.co.uk

Facebook: www.facebook.com/thebabyjourney

Twitter: @thebabyjourney

 

 

Mummy Queen – Happy Jubilee!

Union jacks are flapping in the breeze, balloons and bunting are waving everywhere, street parties and celebrations are in full swing, and we are all making the most of the four day jubilee weekend.

So this week The Baby Journey are thinking about the lady of the moment, none other than our royal sovereign, Queen Elizabeth II, a remarkable woman who is known across the globe. A woman who is known for her poise and diplomacy, her discretion and wisdom; she is a bilingual world traveller who rubs shoulders with world leaders every day and has held weekly audiences with 12 prime ministers, all round a rather inspiring lady.

What we sometimes forget is that she is also a busy mum & wife, juggling everything just like the rest of us.

Her Majesty the Queen was born Elizabeth Alexandra Mary on April 21st 1926 at her family’s home in Bruton Street, apparently by caesarean section, and four years later became a big sister to Princess Margaret.

At age 13 the teenage Princess Elizabeth met a dashing young man called Philip at a family wedding, he was 5 years older than her and for Elizabeth (or Lilibet as her family called her) it was love at first sight. She started to write to Philip (a Greek prince) and they became pen pals, and fell in love. In 1946 the young couple became secretly engaged.

Although her family did not entirely approve of the marriage (some of Philip’s family weren’t invited to the wedding) Princess Elizabeth married her handsome Prince at Westminster Abbey on November 20th 1947, she was 21 years old. It was the end of the war and her beautiful dress had to be paid for with ration coupons. There were 2000 guests at the wedding, and it was broadcast to 200 million radio listeners across the world.

A year later, on 14th November 1948, Elizabeth and Philip’s first baby was born, a little boy named Charles Philip Arthur George. He was born at Buckingham Palace by caesarean section, delivered by the Royal family’s surgeon gynaecologists (Sir John Peel was present at the births of all of the Queen’s children). Charles was the King’s first grandchild and was baptised at the palace with water from the River Jordan.

21 months later baby Anne Elizabeth Alice Louise was born at Clarence House on 15th August 1950, and the little family became four .

In February 1952 everything changed when Elizabeth’s father, King George, died and she became Queen. In June 1953 Queen Elizabeth was crowned in front of millions. Her husband was right there next to her, and Charles was at his Mummy’s coronation, although little Anne did not attend (anyone out there with a toddler can see why!).

After 7 years as Queen, Elizabeth had another son, Andrew Albert Christian Edward. He was the first child born to a reigning monarch since 1857.

Four years later Elizabeth delivered her fourth child, another boy who they named Edward Anthony Richard Louis. Charles was 15, Anne was 13, and Andrew was 4. The Royal family was complete!

Fast forward to 1977 and at the tender age of 51 the Queen became a grandmother for the first time after Anne gave birth to her son Peter. In 2010 Peter & his wife Autumn made the Queen a great granny when their first daughter Savannah was born right here in Gloucestershire.

 The Queen has four children, eight grandchildren (Peter, Zara, William, Harry, Beatrice, Eugenie, Louise & James) and two great grandchildren (Savannah and Isla). She celebrates her 65th wedding anniversary to Philip later this year.

Her Majesty is a formidable lady known across the globe, highly accomplished and respected with enormous dedication to her people, courage, stamina and integrity – but also a loving wife and mother who enjoys nothing more than being in the countryside with her family and animals and having fun together. She may be the Queen, but she’s also a Mummy – and this weekend Ma’am we salute you for both.

Congratulations on your Diamond Jubilee Your Majesty, we hope you’re having a brilliant time!

 

We hope you’ve enjoyed our blog…… we would love to hear from you.

Contact us here on our blog, chat on Facebook at www.facebook.com/thebabyjourney or tweet @thebabyjourney.

We’ll treat you like royalty!

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