Christmas is...

 
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Christmas with kids is sneaking presents in to the house and wrapping them in the dark of night. Coz you just KNOW they will hunt down that one cupboard at the back of the wardrobe where the stash is.

Christmas is having your toddler be forever traumatised from the one time his daddy dressed up as Santa at playgroup. Come on, when will he ever forget this moment?! 

Christmas with a six month old is being so excited to watch him get sooo close to crawling, but then also hoping he holds off until after the big day to save the Christmas tree from destruction. Fingers crossed!

Christmas as a mum is gifting yourself an awesome present… because there is no guarantee someone else will get it (no matter how hard you hint at it). Hello, an awesome wood watch from Jord. Wooden, unique and all mine. Let's just pop it under the tree and say it’s from Santa, shall we?

Christmas as a family is so damn infectious. How can you not get hyped up when your toddler asks every single day if he can open the presents under the Christmas tree? I’m just hanging out to see all the excitement on their little faces on the big day.

Yep, Christmas sure is for early starts and late nights. For huge shiny trees covered in baubles and sparkly lights. But mostly it's for the looks on their darling little faces and squeals of delight. To know as a parent you must be doing something right.

First Christmas as a family of four, here we go!

If you want to gift yourself or someone you love one of these unique wooden watches Jord is offering my readers 25% off for the holiday season, just jump here to receive your special code. Also, I've linked Jords women’s watches, men's watches and also mine here. You can thank me later when you get to cross some presents off your list! :)

 

Baby you're late

 
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I just want the world to know that I am a mother.... And because of this I will not be on time. Now, don't get me wrong, I love punctuality. I thrive on being organised. I am basically a big fat dork who likes to get to a party ten minutes before it has even started.

But that has all gone. Completely. Out. The. Window. And not even by choice! My precision planning has been rendered useless. My in-depth lists completely pointless. And years honing my OCD grade organisation is oh so laughable in its current state.

And I blame it on the kids! Pooplosions. Vomit. Extremely urgent need for raisins in the middle of nowhere. Milk stop. Pit stop. Oops forgot to stop, and go to the toilet. Pant changes. Nappy changes. Vomit all over my clothes changes. Toddlers falling asleep in the car. Or babies not falling asleep, no matter where they are. Out of routine. Out of sorts. Lack of sleep. Too much sleep. (HAHA, kidding, that one never happens). High fever. High energy. The toddler high-fiving every single person in the party. And quite simply, I did not think it would take fifteen minutes to get from the kitchen to the car. Ugh.

I would say now that we have realised this we are going to plan ahead. But I think we are just best to accept the inevitable. We'll be there, for sure, but don't ever expect it to be on time. 

 

The baby will sleep

 
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So we've been pretty lucky with Remy so far. Thank F he sleeps like a champ, and pwetty please, knock on wood, let's hope it continues. But having a little baby back in the house reminds me of all the things we did to get Austin to sleep, and also with Remy too (though no where near as much work) and then all of the things people do and say when you’re trying to get your baby to sleep. This time round, I can see the humour in it. But um.... it wasn't so funny when baby number one refused to sleep. I'm sure there are a heap more, but here are my top eight things people say and do when you're trying your damn best to get the baby to sleep (and to stay asleep): 

1.     “Oh he looks so tired” most often said in a high pitched voice right in the baby's face

2.     “Oh he's eyes are still open.” Mmm hmm, they will be if you keep staring at him like that

3.     “He made a sound, he must be awake!” person runs quickly over to the baby to stare, prod, and try to pick it up. Yep, effectively making sure the baby will neverrrrr fall asleep.  

4.     *person starts singing baby a song *song is doing the opposite of getting baby to sleep 

5.     “He's not tired, he just slept” 

6.     “I don't think he's happy to go to sleep” Ok, he made just one teensy weensy sound. I'm preeeety sure he will survive.

7.     Random person on the street “oh looooook a sleeping baby!!!!”  Argh. Not any more. Thanks a lot stranger.

8.     And the biggest culprit of all meeeeee, dropping all the heavy things, walking into walls and making all the loud noises while trying to be SOOO quiet. Why am I always the most clumsy when trying to be all stealth around the house?

 

When we said kids wouldn't change our lives

 
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Yes, we actually had this conversation. I mean, most people do before kids right? Looking back we said a lot of hilarious things. These are some of my favourites:

- I won't be one of those parents who is always talking about their kids. Always sharing pictures of them. Saying how gorgeous, talented, and advanced they are. Hmmm, sharing a couple photos each and every day ins't considered over sharing, right?

- We'll get the kids to fit into our lives, not the other way around. This is actually the best one. If only the pre-baby me could see all of the countless hours sitting in the car while the baby sleeps, whispering in dark rooms while doing absolutely nothing to get the kids down, and waking up at all sorts of odd hours for night time feeds, cuddles and sick children. 

- We won't let kids age us. Oh, no. We will be different to all the people who told us it is inevitable. (HAHAHA)

- We'll definitely keep our social life post kids (and by social I don't mean drinking a glass of wine while watching netflix). 

- My kids won't eat anything out of a packet. (This is basically just a variation of 'we'll be the best parents', like duh, of course we will. Other ones in this realm include: our kids won't be naughty in public, they'll all eat all the fabulous healthy foods, and sleep like the precious gems they are).

My gawd, could we have been any more wrong about everything? Our lives did change. SO dramatically. But it turns out it was one of the best changes possible.

Feedwear - the definitive* list

 
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When I had Austin I found it SO hard to find clothes to wear when going out, or staying in, or you know, doing damn anything. I was already so stressed with a newborn child to look after, I just wanted something to put on that made me feel good and I could breastfeed with (God knows a woman’s already been through enough by the time she's popped that little bubba out!). Something as small as feeling good about a new top, or confident that you can rip the boob out quick enough for your little babe is all the confidence a gal needs!

So, I’m not sure if things have changed over the last three years, or I’ve just chanced upon a SHIP load of awesome brands over the last few months…. BUT there is a HEAP of options out there (if you know where to look!)

So… my gift to you is sharing all of these fabulous brands in the 'Feedwear Directory' so that all you mamas out there can avoid all of the hell annoying ground work I did (countless google searches for button down shirts, ‘chic’ nursing clothes, or anything with a zip!). 

You can click on each brand below to be taken directly to their website. Happy shopping mama's there is some awesome clothes awaiting you! 

 

The Feedwear Directory

 

The Purists (feedwear all the way)

FEED Life

Stylefeed 

Hello Monday Active

Max and Mee

 

Ripe Maternity Knit and Jeans

Ripe Maternity Knit and Jeans

The Staples (oh yeah, you know these goodies!)

Ripe Maternity 

Queen Bee 

 

 

*…when I say ‘definitive’ I mean ‘this is the info I have so far’ so if you know of any other fab nursing wear brands drop them in the comments below and I’ll do my best to keep this little baby updated. 

To every woman I scared with the story of my first labour – I'm sorry

 

And the good news is the second one wasn’t nearly as bad. And maybe the first one wasn’t so bad either? 

 

After the birth of Austin, I saw my birth story like a war badge that I was proud to display. Something horrible, but amazing. Something I endured. 

But the thing is, Austin’s birth wasn’t that bad. There was no ‘emergency’ situation. No one was at risk at any point. A healthy little baby was born at the end, and apart from being a bit knocked around I was totally fine. 

Yes, this was the most intense pain I’ve ever felt (beyond this world bad). Yes, the baby had moved posterior creating horrible back pain. Yes, I was induced which (depending on who you talk to) makes the pain so much more intense. And oh boy, a big yes, I was NOT coping with the pain at all.

But it’s taken me until after the birth of baby number two to think, maybe it wasn’t so bad?

Things went a lot more smoothly with baby number two. Yes there was pain (a lot), and it was uncomfortable and at times your body is doing some really gross (but equally amazing) things. But really I think the big difference was me.  Being prepared for the pain and being proactive in managing it. With birth number one, I remember laying there just waiting for the pain to wash over me.  Birth number two I just thought there is no way I can do it in the same way. Sitting and waiting for pain. So I needed to do something different. So I looked into pain management techniques, tried to get in to a really good positive mind frame and created a plan that involved Pat (aka the best #instagramhusband going around) so we would be in it together. Of course, labour is a totally unpredictable beast, and anything could have happened which would have totally changed all of these plans. But things went pretty well (amazingly so), hello, did you see the cute little button we produced?

So I just wanted to say, to all the women out there (especially the ones I told the story of me screaming down The Freemasons hospital, with the nurses trying to get me to shut the hell up) it’s not so bad, your body was built for this and you can do it!

Well, there’s my bit.

And if you’re interested in some of the pain management techniques I used during labour get your hands on “Birth Skills” by Juju Sundin (thanks to my darling friend Hayley for the suggestion, what would I have done without this?!!). I don’t think it’s ground breaking material, and it may not work for everyone but if anything you can walk (or scream) in to your birth with some skills (and confidence) up your sleeve.

When you're 39 weeks pregnant

 

You are not simply doing the washing, putting things away or getting organised when you are 39 weeks pregnant. Oh No. The world says you are NESTING.

If you do not answer your phone or respond to a text STRAIGHT AWAY, OMG you're probably in labour. The person should probably keep calling you a hundred times to check. No, I'm not in labour. And if I was, I would still not answer the phone. 

"How many weeks are you? Are you ready? Feeling excited? Getting nervous? I have a great birth/pregnancy/baby story to tell you." Please, can you? I am just dyyyyying to hear it. And FYI the less you actually know the person the more they are willing to tell. 

Depending on who you talk to, you will look SMALL or BIG for your weeks. And they can tell you're carrying HIGH or maybe LOW and they can DEFINITELY tell you're carrying a BOY. Or wait, it could be a GIRL. And OMG you've grown! 

Expect to be touched, poked and prodded. Yes, by doctors (duh), but by strangers and passers by too. Apparently I am a certified good luck charm, all you have to do is rub my belly and your wish is my command (ok, I will 100% not deliver on this, so hands off). 

And expect for SO many people to tell you being pregnant was the best time of their lives. Yes, because we all love fluid retention, carpel tunnel syndrome, waking all night long to pee and waddling like a penguin. And me? I especially LOVE not drinking, eating soft cheeses and cutting back on caffeine (said no one ever). 

Thank F you get an adorable little babe at the end of this long nine month journey. We're ready to meet you little mooi number 2! 

While we're still 3

 

Safe to say pregnancy number one is always going to be different to number two. Number one is filled with awe and amazement and babymoons and little trips away, just because. Where pregnancy number two you know what's going to happen (for the most part). It's still amazing and exciting (whoah the human body can do whaaaat?) but the awe has worn off a bit and has been replaced with chasing a tantruming toddler around the supermarket (fun!). 

Instead of napping on the couch and indulging in as many movie sessions as you can, you're probably getting up at 6am with kid number one and then spending the day trying to reason with a child who won't stop crying because he wants to eat crayons for afternoon tea.

So we haven't done a babymoon or any trips away with this second pregnancy. And the nights out for dinner have been few and far between. But hell we just got back from 18 months in Europe so exploring the old hood (Melbourne baby!), and seeing all of the faces we'd missed so much, has been more than awesome enough.

After all, we gotta make the most of all these 'last moments' of being a family of 3. Before we know it there's gonna be four of us and we'll be back to square one, learning how to 'do it' all over again.

It's gonna be a boy!

 

What's the perfect combination? One boy, one girl? Two girls? Two boys? 3 kids? 4 kids? More?

I really have no damn idea. But what I do know is that we are making ANOTHER LITTLE BOY! So not too long away there will be two little boys in our house getting up to all sorts of mischief. Two little boys running laps around the kitchen bench endlessly, all afternoon. Two little boys kicking balls, throwing toys and screaming like dinosaurs at the top of their lungs. There will probably be years of blue rooms, scratched knees, video games, grass stained clothes, ball games and super heroes to come. 

Yep, it's gonna be fun. And if the second kid is anything like our first, it will be all sorts of noisy, chaotic and energetic fun. <3

New year's nap time

 

I swear parenting is just 80% reverse psychology. Seriously, when you want them to do something there’s no way in hell they’re gonna do it and the second you want them to stop it’s the only thing in the world they want to do.

And it’s no different with sleep, well not when it comes to Austin anyway. When you want him to succumb to sleepy land (hmmm I don’t know, maybe at bedtime and naptime could be a good idea?) he is not having a bar of it but then when we think he’ll wake up (or want him to wake up) he just goes on snoozing without a care.  Aaah, so frustrating!

So, on Sunday we had a fabulous little outing to a Chinese New Year celebration, we chose the location specifically for Austin (hello big festival party). The plan was to get him to sleep on the way to lunch and then probably half way through he’d wake up and get to see all the exciting festivities.  So of course he then slept through the entire thing. Ha, poor kid. Not gonna lie, having lunch and being able to walk around while he snoozed was a bit of a luxury. We could almost forget we even had a kid with us. Well, except for the pram.

And I guess really, he’s none the wiser. Except for waking up with an awesome new rooster balloon. There’s always next year, kid.