Tag Archives: working mum

Conspicuous by my absence

20 Jun

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I have just logged into my blog account and realised that I haven’t written anything useful for three weeks! Woeful behaviour. I read another mummy blog the other day where a similar absence was put down to being “a bit sad”. Whilst this certainly rang a bell with me I have in reality been mostly very busy and away from the office where I often write these posts whilst pretending to work.

Over the last three weeks I have been:-

Camping with the babe and hubby in the rainy lakes,

Spending three lush days with my best bud and her babe doing child centric activities,

Looking for a new house,

Forgetting that I have to work for a living and,

Seriously thinking about babe no 2.

When I say camping I really mean glamping (if any form of holiday with a young child can be considered glamorous). We went to the Lake District in a camping pod provided by the National Trust. Whilst it rained it was very relaxing to be away from all things electronic and its only after the event that I realise just how much iPad and iPhone distract from the business of being a family.

The babe delighted in having both mother and father’s undivided attention and made the hubby’s year with her wide eyed smiles as he pitched his tent in the rain. I should note that the hubby has military roots and made a living out of adventurous training in his younger days. He has spent much of our courtship and marriage trying to get me into walking boots and gortex, largely unsuccessfully. He must have been overjoyed that lack of cash and reluctance to fly with the babe got me as close to nature as he could hope for. My new walking boots are fashionably purple but still fundamentally ugly.

The camping pod was really just a glorified shed. It had no light or power but the solid floor meant that the babe could have her full size travel cot and mum a camp cot on the floor. I can’t say daddy was disappointed to be squeezed out into his tent. Whether or not a two man North Face expedition tent intended by the manufacturer as suitable for making Everest base camp was needed is however debatable….

Like all good Mummy shoppers I did take the opportunity to find the babe wet weather kit so that she could get stuck in despite the weather. She is an infant size 3 so finding wellies was a nightmare! So much of a nightmare that I thought it only fair to share what I found. The shop is on my local high street but stock is all available online. Jump Shoes

The waterproof jacket and trousers were procured from JoJo Maman Bebe and are pac a mac style so they take up little to no room in a bag. They also come in a variety of girl and boy friendly colours and are available mail order. Pink and purple Polka Dots are all a girl needs to look stylish in the rain. That and purple walking boots…. Jojo Wet Weather Gear

NB. For the next few weeks I have made a commitment to myself to post something every day. A couple of days a week it will be extensive but mostly it will be a pic of something I am lusting after for myself or the babe (under the Barbie My Baby tagline) or an observation on something that has touched me during that day. Fingers crossed it’ll be entertaining.

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That sinking feeling…

23 May

I may have come to sound like a stuck record on issues around being a working Mum but I do seem to come up against its challenges week after week with no let up!

Yesterday my lovely babe woke up looking like something not right. I don’t post pics of her for the slightly overcautious reason that I want this blog to remain anonymous but I was tempted by this particular sight. She has a bad case of conjunctivitis. This manifested itself in hard bright green discharge from her ears to the bridge of her nose across both eyes. Compounded by the solid green snot running nose to mouth she looked like a little baby alien child. Poor thing.

After I had prised all this from her face with 101 water soaked cotton wool balls I was forced to confront the next issue; Who on earth was going to look after my highly contagious child for my working week? Despite only working a three day week this seems to be a common issue. So the sinking feeling comes in. It starts with concern for my gorgeous girl, builds to panic when contemplating the reality of the situation and usually ends on feelings of inadequacy that I have to leave her with others when she’s not feeling great.

Thank goodness I have childminders that are not only accomodating of the common illnesses of childhood but that I really trust and value their influence over my little girl.

In other news I am very excited that the warm weather has eventually allowed me to break into the babes summer wardrobe. Below is a fab coral romper that I bought a few weeks ago at George at Asda. A bargain at £6 and right on trend both in colour and style. Even with gooey eyes – supercute!

The coral one is no longer available online but this denim version packs a similar punch. http://direct.asda.com/george/younger-girls-trousers-shorts/heart-print-denim-playsuit/GEM234287,default,pd.html

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Potty for the Potty

24 Apr

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I had to write a post today to detail the mildly concerning and highly amusing events of yesterday. Not all mothers would find these events amusing I must assure you, but on balance I find you have to see the funny side or you’re stuffed.

I am not a blogger who likes to write about her child’s bowel movements in detail. I write about baby fashion and working Mum‘s but sometimes sh*t just happens. (Sorry about that).

So, the babe, she is a determined little thing and she is currently determined only to do a number 2 whilst on her thrown. We started using a potty when she was about 11 months. (Not out of any desire to win the potty training competition I must add). She had various issues going to the loo and my Mum suggested she might find it easier to go if she was sitting. The prescribed Movicol hadn’t had much effect so I gave it a go, and it worked. 3 months on she goes on the potty a couple of times a day, very rarely resorting to her nappy for a no 2.

However, we were out for lunch on Sunday with some mates. In hindsight it was fortunate that these were mates that were longstanding and also had young children of their own. Despite having purchased a travel potty the previous week I had neglected to bring it with me, confident that if she really neeeded to go – she would in her nappy.

She was no sooner in her highchair than I saw the telltale signs that she needed to go. I held her, cajoled her, took her to the changing room to take her nappy off to see if that helped but all to no avail. On taking her back into the relatively swanky gastro pub her cries started up again and my hubby suggested I just hold her over the loo. Nice. Amazingly it very quickly worked and we good rid of the offending issue. Sadly Mummy’s lovely beef and yorkshire pudding was stone cold. A small price to pay for a happy babe.

The second incident may have some reaching for the phone to call social services but hopefully will raise a chuckle too. The babe has recently graduated to a slightly larger pot to accomodate her growing behind. We went upstairs yesterday lunchtime and all was going to plan until I left the room to grab some wipes. The rooms are next door and the danger of accident I felt limited but no so. I re-entered the bathroom just in time to see her toppling sideways mid bowel movement onto the lino. Whether the subsequent screams were as a result of injury caused through the fall or the poo itself is hard to say. However the engineers from Sky fitting our multiroom in the bedroom were no doubt left unsure of what was going on. Bless her. She now has a lovely purple bruise on her cheekbone which I feel the need to explain to everyyone I meet lest they be concerned.

I am genuinely pleased that we have found a way of making the whole issue of going to the toilet easier for her. Lesson for the week seems to be to remember the travel potty, you never know when the mood might strike…

Ps. The potty photo isn’t the babe but the below is. Showcasing her baby Zara jeans and her new found stair climbing skills…nightmare!

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Leaving Before the Dawn (in an Isabella Oliver jersey dress)

21 Apr

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I am writing from the office today as the week comes to a close. Its Fri and it only seems like five minutes since my working week began. Lucky you, you say. Well yes, but I have 5 days worth of work to fit into my 3 day working week and I do fear I am not succeeding.

Yesterday was a big day. I had a business meeting in the Midlands early on so needed to leave sunny Newcastle at 5am. Pre-baby this was a regular occurance and although draining it was my job and I did it. This Thursday my business trip down the country was sadly marked my by me being unable to see my gorgeous girl before she headed to the child minder. My hubby was there to get her up and dressed and out but its the first time it hasn’t been me. I was gutted. Its not that I don’t consider the hubby capable. He is and I knew she would be fine with him but I was sad for me to miss that part of my role as a mummy.

Perhaps thanks to my road trip I am once again loaded with cold. An ever helpful male colleague suggested that I need to eat better and sleep more… I am trying!

It’s funny that not being the first person to see my baby in the morning is such a big deal for me, maybe it is for others I don’t know. But on the rare mornings the hubby wakes before me I practically race him to the nursery! If I start to psychoanalyse myself I’d probs say its because my mum looked after me on her own in my formative years so my experience is that the Mum does it all. Slightly different when the hubby is around though, and I do need to remember not to take over. A topic that is more than a blog in itself so perhaps one for when I don’t have the lurgy.

I wanted to drop in a quick fashion piece today. I love the Isabella Oliver brand Isabella Oliverand really used it when I was pregnant. However, the non maternity women’s range, 365, is also fab and my wardrobe now has plenty of it. Same heavy jersey fabrics they use in the maternity wear, simple and ever stylish cuts and gorgeous colours. I’ve added a pic of my most recent lust item above but also wanted to show you some shoes they are featuring in their catalogue. Not an Isabella Oliver item but I need to find out where to get some! (Oh and I’ll be ordering those skinnies too).

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Working for the family

3 Apr

I have to say, a huge three weeks into my blogging career, I can see how it can become addictive. As a busy working mum I shouldn’t really have time to spend an hour blogging of an evening but not only is it addictive it’s borderline therapeutic. Well, it is if you do it like I do which is basically writing a diary with a few of my favourite fashionable things thrown in…

My above comments aside I am really struggling with making work and home happen together never mind doing both well. As the hubby works away a lot its easy to feel like I just have to do everything. 5mins before I was about to lose the plot with him last night I made myself remember that he is working 6 day weeks, always in the car or on the plane and under massive pressure to deliver and doing it all for the sake of me and the babe. I think it’s just different for men and women. (Hardly a new observation I know but wait a mo). When I finish work, I rush to the childminders so I can see the babe and spend a precious couple of hours with her before bed. I am knackered, this is a given, but it doesn’t stop me, I prioritise her over everything. When the hubby comes in, he loves to see her waves and smiles for him but wants to unpack a bag, check his blackberry, close his eyes for five mins. As I said I’m not really trying to be critical of that. It’s his choice, as it is mine. It just doesn’t feel like a choice for me. Maybe that’s just motherhood.

As a woman who was pre baby massively into her job it is a surprise to me that I would contemplate giving it up for the time being but the reality is I would. I would miss the money, the independent means, the girls lunches and the boys banter but …. it might be better for the family in the short term. Might. If the hubby did a regular job that was nine to five and he left it at the office it would maybe be different but I can see that the household would benefit from someone being at home. His job is so demanding and travel intensive it would be good to have consistency elsewhere. One to think about a lot more me thinks.

From a fashion perspective today the weather has really thrown us. It is hailing, snowing and raining hard, seemingly all at once! When I went to grab the babe’s coat I realised it was a bit on the small side as we’ve just needed a little fleece or body warmer the last few weeks. A good reason to get a spring jacket I thought. What I found was this little number from George at ASDA. Not available on the website hence the DIY shot but a bit of a nod to Alice Temperley at a bargain price, just £9. It has a fleece lining so will be a bit warmer than a regular mac in the unpredictable weather. In case the pic doesn’t show it well it’s pale pink with brown butterflies. Result!

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Meal planning for Mama

1 Apr

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Well it’s been a long old week. Unusually for me I haven’t blogged for a couple of days. I have had a horrendous temperature and fluey symptoms so just about been able to manage work and child care and very little else. The lovely hubby sent me to bed at 7.30pm last night just after we’d put the babe down so I now feel a lot more human after a good nights kip. It sounds a bit pathetic but I think I was just exhausted. Being back at work has finally caught up with me and I need to make sure I’m eating and sleeping properly or I’m just going to keep getting ill.

With the above in mind I have reinstated my pre baby meal planners which were originally around to make sure the hubby looked after himself. Ironic that it’s now me reaching for the Chinese menu twice a week….. I am actually getting skinnier despite takeaway abuse but this is only really because I hardly eat anything else, not clever. So, I’m back to my Cheerios and fresh fruit at brekkie and whilst lunch remains something of an unplanned feast the meal planner ensures I eat ( and therefore shop) well in the evening. Last night was chicken stuffed with mozzarella and tomato, roasted peppers and new potatoes. Tonight is beef casserole and veg. I’m getting there…

The hubby did alert me to the fact that out of everyone in our household the babe eats the best. I have to say you do seem to put a lot of effort into making sure they get a balanced diet whilst mum becomes a bit secondary. It’s the way of the world I’m sure.

Whilst I have been feeling rubbish the babe, as ever, always finds a way to make me laugh. On Fri night this was the case at 12.30am. No laughing matter I hear you say but…. I was woken by a few cheerful sounding chunters coming through the monitor. Nothing that would cause concern, she normally just settles herself back down. 5 mins later however, there was a very audible “Mama, Mama” so thought I better check what was happening. Having recently found her walking feet she had evidently pulled herself up to standing on the side of her cot only to discover it was a long way back down and she was therefore stuck. Ha ha, bless her. I picked her up, she stuck her thumb in and we were all back asleep by 12.45am. Good girl.

I did mention last week that I was seeking new work clothes and I managed a quick half hour in H&M one lunchtime which yielded a mink and white polka dot shirt. The picture is of the same shirt in black and white but isn’t nearly so nice. I’ll try add a picture of mine later in the week. If the weather is warm enough I have a lovely pale pink pencil skirt (pastel trend) and nude shoes and belt that would make a lovely summer work ensemble with just a little nod to our friends at Mad Men. Work this week has really made me wonder how I can manage full time work on part time hours but that’s another blog! Maybe tomorrow….

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