To the overwhelmed Mumma

To the overwhelmed Mumma ,

I see you exhausted and falling asleep on the sofa with two toddlers sprawled across you , watching the 30th episode of Peppa pig it’s 8.30am but you’ve already been up 3 hours.

Mumma I see you filling up when your toddler has thrown the mother of all tantrums in the supermarket and you can’t take anymore. Everyone is staring , tutting and judging. Hold your head high , you are amazing.

I see you feeling the dreaded mummy guilt because you have given them beige food from the freezer with a side of tinned sweetcorn guilt for lunch and tea that day. I get that you just can’t face thinking of what to cook and chances are it will end up on the floor anyway.

I see you day dreaming of life pre babies when your Friday night decisions consisted of what to drink vodka or gin ? Now they are going to bed when the kids do or staying up and fall asleep five minutes later on the sofa?

I see you mutter the words piss off under your breath when your hubby asks how your day has been. I get that you are jealous that he got a break when he went to work from the terrible two’s and tantrums

I see you saying because “I said so” at the top of your lungs because you have been asked for the 3578 time “why can’t I have chocolate” you can’t take one more question being fired at you.

I see you going up to the bathroom and sitting on the toilet with a hot coffee and snickers and shouting down nothing when you hear “mummy what you eating”

To the Mumma wondering how her toddler could cause so much chaos just in the short three minutes she was having a shower. The window has now been decorated with a  whole tub of Sudocrem and the play room is trashed. But hey you managed to wash your hair , your winning.

For any Mum thinking am I cut out for this? You so are ! All of these are just the signs of the daily mummy struggle and that of an overwhelmed Mumma. Relax have some bubbles and cake because you rock this Mumma.

Love

Another overwhelmed Mumma xx

 

Cooking dairy free with Oatly and getting my sleep back

Frankie has cows milk protein allergy and she is also lactose intolerant so we cook dairy free and Frankie also has to have dairy free milk. Up until the age of two Frankie was prescribed Neocate milk. When Frankie was approaching two we had to make the decision of what milk to move her on to. There are so many alternatives soya , almond , oat milk the list is endless.

We decided to try her on Oatly which is an oat based milk. There are many varieties of the drink but we decided to go with the enriched with calcium and vitamins (D, Riboflavin, B12) one. It is free from lactose, milk protein and soya which is fab.

Frankie was never a good sleeper and still up until 20 months she was waking for milk in the night and she had only slept through a handful of times. She took to the Oatly really quickly it took two nights of fusing and refusing until she realised she did actually like the milk. I have tried it myself and it does taste like milk and has a really pleasant taste to it.

After about a week of having her sippy  cup of Oatly to take to bed Frankie started to sleep through and not wake for milk. After a few months of being on Oatly she now sleeps and I am eternally grateful to Oatly ! We sleep ! I think it may be the fact that it is Oat based and the relaxing nature of oats also maybe it fills her up more than the formula did. It has also given her a better appetite which I am thrilled with. When Frankie was on formula she would pick at her breakfast and lunch but now she is happy to have her breakfast when she wakes up and enjoys it.

There is so much you can do with Oatly , one of our favourite ways of using it in cooking it to make a fish pie. Here is the recipe for you to try.

Ingredients

  • 400ml of Oatly
  • 500g fish pie mix
  • 40g of Vitalite dairy free spread
  • 40g of plain flour
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 200g of grated Vio life cheese

For the topping

  • 800g of medium potatoes, peeled and cut into quarters
  • 40g of vitalite dairy free spread

Method

  • Arrange the fish and prawns in to an oven dish
  • To make the sauce for the pie melt the Vitalite in a pan then add the flour and whisk until it forms a paste , slowly add small amounts of Oatly bit by bit and keep stirring until a thick sauce forms. Add the Vio life to the sauce.

            

  • Pour the sauce over the fish in the oven dish add some salt and pepper.

  • To make the mash for the topping. Half fill a large saucepan with cold water. Add the potatoes and bring to the boil. Simmer for 15 minutes or until the potatoes are soft.
  • Drain the potatoes and put them back in to the pan. Mash with the Vitalite until a mash is formed.

  • Cook in a preheated on 200C/400F/Gas 6 for 25 mins until golden brown on top

There will be a competition live soon over at my facebook page with8 a chance to win some Oatly vouchers and start creating some yummy diary free creations.

 

 

Our last baby

We always said we only wanted two babies and we also wanted them close in age. So with 14 months age difference we now have our two babies , our family is complete. We still have no plans to have anymore.
 
I had a hard time enjoying the baby stage as much as I should have. This was due to both babies having horrendous milk allergies and all the symptoms that came with this. I really regret wishing the baby stage away. I just wanted my babies not to have to suffer and endure the pain they were going through.
 
Last week Frankie was two I can’t believe our last baby is no longer a baby. She came in to the world quite rapidly and we don’t seem to have slowed down since that day.
The time seems to have flown by and she seems so much more grown up than Archie was at that age. She learns so much from her big brother and really is advanced for her age. She’s fiercely independent and bossy. She doesn’t need me to do much for her as she wants to do it all herself. So confident and outgoing and fears nothing. This is good but also sometimes it terrifies me.
I am sad that this is our last baby and we will no longer go through all the baby phases again. Frankie’s last tooth is breaking through at the moment , this will be the last time we go through teething, the last time she will have those rosy red teething cheeks and the last time I rub teethig gel on her gums.  She’s outgrown all the baby grows that were handed down from Archie. This makes me a little bit sad that these will not be handed down to another baby.
Frankie used to love falling asleep on my chest cuddled up in a blanket. She doesn’t do this anymore and I can’t remember the exact day she last did this. I wish I had known it was the last time so I could truly cherish that moment.
Frankie doesn’t have bottles anymore and the side board in the kitchen is now empty where the steriliser and bottles used to sit. I didn’t know that day I fed her last bottle to her and rocked her to sleep was going to be the last day I did that. Frankie and Archie both love learning new nursery rhymes. The other day we were singing one of their favourites. I realised I will never teach another baby to wind the bobbin up or row row row the boat.
 
There are also completely unnecessary things you won’t do with your second /last. You won’t rush them through all the phases, won’t try to teach them to count at 9 months. You won’t mind if they take a little longer to crawl and walk. Also you are less precious a little bit of cake wont harm them.
We are happy with our decision and it works for us but that doesn’t mean I don’t feel a slight sadness every time the next stage/phase is over. I also sometimes find myself getting curious and wonder what it would be like with a third child, who would they look like? who’s personality would they have ? The last baby does hold a very bittersweet feeling. All of her firsts and the stages she is going through are our lasts.  But our family is complete and we couldn’t be more blessed.

Loneliness in motherhood , because yes it is a thing

When I first moved back home to Wales we lived in Abergavenny. I was in a brand new town and was also a brand new Mum. Even though I had my beautiful boy and was also pregnant with Frankie by the time he was 6 months old it was probably the loneliest time of my life.

Some may say how can you feel lonely when you have a baby as all of your focus should be on them. Or you shouldn’t feel lonely , it’s selfish as you have your baby and that should be enough to stop you feeling lonely. But feeling lonely as a mum is a thing. Yes you love the bones of your baby and they are the centre of your universe , but you still exist too and need other human interaction and friends.

When we moved to Abergavenny I literally didn’t know one single person there. Archie was 10 weeks old and I was a first time mum still trying to find my feet. I was desperate to meet some other mummy friends and fantasised about going for coffee and play dates and chatting to loads of other Mums at playgroups. Isn’t this what being a stay at home mum involved? Yes in a perfect idealistic world it probably did.

Archie basically hated sleep so I was very sleep deprived and always up at the crack of dawn. Most days James would leave the house by 6.30 am and would not be home until around 6pm. This was such a long time to go without talking or interacting with another adult , some days I would literally see no one. I did start to feel really isolated and lonely.

I decided to join a local baby group. I was so excited and off I went with high expectations. It was awful I hated it!  I had never felt so awkward in my whole life. I’m a really sociable and outgoing person and always have been , not afraid to chat and say hello.

There were a few Mums at the group they all seemed to know each other so I sat myself down amongst them in the circle. I attempted to start a conversation with the woman next to me but she near on blanked me , just nodded and literally put her back to me and started chatting to the other Mums. I will never forget that it made me feel so low , I actually cried when I got out of there.

I continued to go to this group because it was good for Archie and seeing him smile and enjoy the music was enough to keep me going back. I will never forget how long those days were. Looking back I think I was definitely low and not myself in those early days. Being alone most days , sleep deprivation not having anyone to relate to really did contribute to that. I was never diagnosed with post natal depression but only now can I admit that I probably was suffering with it but thankfully managed to pull myself out of it.

I was so lucky that when we moved I found the most beautiful mother and tots group and have definitely made friends for life. Could not have asked for a more down to earth group of mummies. They make me laugh daily and never get bored with talking about tantrums , poo and sick.

I love my babies so much and they are my world , but they can’t chat about fashion and have a glass of vino with me. You do need friends when you are a mum and people you can relate to and count on to keep you going . When you are having a really crappy day its amazing even to just pop a text to your friend who just gets it. Being able to share with them that you’ve just stepped in shit because you’re trying to potty train your two-year old but he isn’t quite getting the grasp of it.

Whenever I see that mum who was me 3 years ago wanting to have a coffee and chat I always make time and be as welcoming as I can. Because loneliness as a mum is most definitely a thing.