Wednesday, 30 June 2010

How to be a happy mum

Looking around the Netmums webpage, I found this title of their latest book. I liked the last Netmums book I bought, the food one, and the one before, about toddlers to teenagers or something. Very good, written by experts AND people like you and me.

Anyway, I saw a review of this book and it included a summary of what the book covered. I thought I'd add my comments in here to the list of How to be a happy mum!

  1. Friends: why we need mum friends and how to keep them I would be at a loss without my mummy friends. I have a group of both NCT and mummy friends. We are an excellent support network and have been through so much together: PND, returning to work, miscarriage, more pregnancies... How to keep them? I have a revolving group that I see on Mondays, and another group on Fridays. Then there are the friends who live further away and I admit I have to make an effort to keep in touch and meet up with them. My friends are my life support.
  2. Sleep: Without sleep everything seems's how to get more of it Everyone is an expert. I am an expert! An expert on MY OWN CHILD that is.... We all hear the smug comments "Oh my child slept through at 3 days" and then we snigger when a year later, they visit the health visitor with "sleep issues". It's one of the most difficult things to advise on. My manager's first born slept like an angel, and she admitted to being smug a few times. When her second arrived and NEVER slept, but she was still doing the same things she'd done with the first, she realised every child is different and reacts differently. How we learn...
  3. Money and working: To work or not to work? And how on earth to juggle it all without collapsing Read a previous post on Work Life Balance to hear my view!
  4. Clutter and chaos: It shouldn't be so important but it is! Housework is the no. 1 stress factor in a recent survey of mums. Lots of ideas for how to deal with it and how to get a better sense of perspective I am still learning! I must buy this book for this chapter alone. I am about to move to a 4 bedroomed house and I am SURE that my inner domestic godess wil burst out of me the minute I cross the threshold. Watch this space...
  5. Depression and stress: Are you depressed? or just stressed? Or just exhausted? How do you know and how to you start to feel better? I think depression/stress/exhaustion are all on a continuum and we all dip into it and out of it at some time during motherhood. I know of four mummies who had PND and are now all fine, thanks to a mixture of counselling and medication (and a caring doctor). I know of one other mummy who didn't realise she had had PND until she had her second baby and DIDN'T feel the same as she felt after her first. A good network of friends can help and support you through this.
  6. The unexpected (or the stuff life throws at us): There's always something isn't there? Just when you think you've made it, something else comes along. How to cope with the unexpected and what to expect from life. What to expect from life? Haven't all of our priorities changed? And just when you think you have Problem X sorted, along comes Challenge Y.
I personally think I am quite a happy mummy, thanks to a loving family, brilliant and supportive friends (both mummy and otherwise), a good doctor and health visitor, an understanding manager at work, and last but by no means least, a great acupuncturist!

Friday, 25 June 2010

The Gallery: Creatures

This week's theme at The Gallery is Creatures.

I zipped through my pictures on my other blog during my lunch hour (far too hot to go out) and found this one.

Elf is of course... the creature called SPIDERMAN!

And what is he carrying under his arm? A piece of plastic piping of course. It was part of a game the details of which I cannot recall.

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

Work life balance - the choice of earning less, but the chance of having much more

Last Friday I was sunbathing on my picnic mat whilst my son played a game involving pussycats and buckets of grass, thinking about what to in my next blog post. As I "announced" on my blog recently, I have a new column (ooo exciting!) and I was commissioned to write a piece on work life balance. (More details to come later about my column).

Work life balance to me is the choice of earning less, but the chance of having much more. I’m that part-time working mum chasing her tail, remembering the toy for her four year old son’s Show’n’Tell, before rushing to get to work. I work three days a week, partly for sanity purposes, partly for money.

Tuesday, 15 June 2010

The Gallery: Motherhood

This is my first go at The Gallery so apologies if I don't do it right! Here's my entry - simply myself, my son Elf and my mother (my template for motherhood). So Elf, if in 20 years you think I did a good job, thank Nana. If not, hmmm blame Nana.

Wednesday, 9 June 2010

A proud mummy (except when Elf mooned at the headmistress)

Today Elf went to his new school for a practice run. There he was, dressed in his party shirt and vest and smart shorts. What a big boy he is, off to school.

A few tears at drop-off with Daddy, but a happy boy came out to meet me at pick-up time before lunch. He was in his vest as he'd taken his shirt off (how embarrassed was I, they must have thought he'd worn a vest instead of a t-shirt!). Armed with his bag and a drawing, he ran to me and told me he'd been fine. He'd cuddled a boy called J who was now his friend. He waved to S on the way out and all seemed fine.

We know the headmistress Miss P, and she called around this evening to see how Elf had got on. Fine we said. She said she'd seen him sitting nicely playing with cars, ahh how sweet. Then Elf came to the door to see her, and as is normal for playtime before bed, he was dressed only in his pants. (Is this a boy thing?) Guess what he did? He pulled down his pants and showed his headmistress his willy. We tried not to laugh, but struggled. It's a good job she knows us well!

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

What I've been doing while I haven't been blogging (stolen title)

I'll hold my hands up and admit that I've stolen this title from I'll think of a title later's last entry. I just want to list the things I have been doing, to make me feel better about not having blogged for 12 days. Here goes:
  1. Being ill with a hacking cough that appeared without the preceding cold - bloody annoying
  2. Looking after a supposedly-ill child who is off nursery with bottom issues, but seems quite normal to me
  3. Spending two days in Bournemouth with my mum and dad, and Elf - lovely sunny days on the beach
  4. Sorting out my speeding fine and deciding whether to go on a Driver Awareness Course (I am, but it's in the next county to me)
  5. Worrying over whether we can afford our new house - status: survey done on ours for buyer, and our offer on our desired house accepted too, survey to be booked next week so not there yet but getting closer
  6. Being published - more details later but I have been asked to write a small piece on Work Life Balance for a local publication
  7. Trying to get my head around arranging childcare for the school holidays from September - it's a nightmare
  8. Worrying about my friend - get well soon.
I think that will do it. I will now get on and read all of your blogs and get some commenting done!