I’ve blogged!! I know - I didn’t know I could still do that anymore either 🤣 However, I’ve now had approximately 17 trillion messages about a certain white noise machine since raving about it on my Instagram stories a couple of weeks ago so I’ve written my ‘Top 5 really bloody useful baby products’ and included the machine of dreams. I’ve not been paid for this post, there are no affiliate links (I’m not getting any commission) and I’ve noted whether products were paid for or gifted. These are purely my recommendations based on what we’ve found useful this time around (so far!) ⚡️
Happy Father’s Day to my parenting partner in crime. At times we feel more like teammates than lovers but there is no one I’d rather discuss infant regurgitation with. Pics from our lunch today, where Wilf got cross (because he wanted to gum a giant Yorkshire pudding but then didn’t want to gum a giant Yorkshire pudding, but then did want to ... x 100), Henry incessantly quizzed us about WWE trivia and Jude lay down on his seat before asking to go the toilet where he fondled a urinal 👍
On the eve of Father’s Day, I’m sharing this post from my third fave dad (who isn’t my baby daddy or my own actual dad). These are priceless Man vs Baby😂
SIX MONTHS OLD
Half a year already. I was going to post just the pic on the right (taken today ❤️) but I’ve decided instead to use this opportunity to send a massive virtual hug to anyone who is living life in the left-hand side of this collage right now. Wilf is an absolute joy and his little chops light up my life but there was a period of around 6 weeks early on when he was not a joy, at all. This was in no way his fault, of course, but that was how it was. I found those weeks pretty soul-destroying and even though all babies are different I’m hoping that if you’re living the angry baby stage right now you might take comfort in the fact that even the unhappiest of newborns can blossom into smiling ones with cheeky chops.
Oh Wilf. You make me feel all the feels.
You have reminded me of the frustration of watching a tiny angry human desperately trying to roll over (then getting cross because you’ve rolled over and can’t roll back, repeat x 1000).
You have reminded me of what it feels like to want to fast forward the hour or two before bed because you’ve ‘gone savage’ and nothing but bedtime can save us.
You have reminded me of the sheer joy babies bring from smiling (you made us wait a looonng time to crack out a grin but you’re making up for it now).
But you haven’t just reminded me of things that I’ve felt before, you have made me feel new things, too. I am confident around you.
I am not comparing what you are doing to other babies (or what I am doing to other mums 👀). I have had some pretty wobbly moments since I’ve had you but I have always known that I am the best mum you could have because I am your mum and nobody could love you more. I had no such confidence with Henry (and to a lesser extent, Jude) when they were babies, believing wholeheartedly that I was simply a little bit shit at this thing called motherhood.
Parenting is hard, really bloody hard, but never let anyone make you feel like you are not cut out for it. If this strikes a chord (and in case no one has told you recently) you are doing a great job and every now and again the way your baby looks at you will remind you of that. Just keep swimming.
My proudest achievements 💛
Holiday mornings ☀️One pretending to be a teenager, one sniffing his bestest pig’s foot and one delighted to have found his own feet. It’s SO nice to be away as a fam for the week, even though the evenings are proving a bit tricky as Wilf turns into a pumpkin whenever we try to deviate from his 6pm bath-and-bedtime curfew. At home, we were feeling so smug about how successfully he goes down to sleep (regardless of how many times he wakes up, he always starts the night well). On holiday, we are not high-fiving ourselves quite so much as he loses his absolute shit if he’s not in bed by 6:30 😂 It doesn’t matter what we do, when it gets to the evening, he won’t sleep in the pram, or the carrier, and even if he’s had a big nap earlier in the day and we are seated for dinner by 5:30, he simply screams at us from his high chair wearing a face which says ‘where’s my bath and bed, bitches!’ as we try to neck our drinks and all get indigestion. Think we’ll attempt an early dinner for the third time tonight and if it’s too much for the little fella we’ll change tack and have lunch out followed by a snacky tea back at the pad when he’s sleeping 💤 But first, breakfast (where I’ll encourage the children to each have eleven courses, including ham, because it’s included 😆)
Wilf getting ready for his first family holiday 😍✈️☀️Wish we could have used this snap for his passport, rather than the one that makes him look like Uncle Fester 😆
GUESS THE BABY
“Your boys are all so similar!” is something I hear every day so here they all are as babies, just for fun. Who’s who? Clue: each of them appears at least once in these 6 pics ... I am sure this should be really easy, but let’s see!
This evening, the baby cried for 2 hours and then went to bed at 5:50 (nervous laughter about the night ahead) and as I type this, his big brothers are in a time-out after ignoring 3 x warnings and a stern-dad-voice ‘I’m counting to 5’, after which they still gave zero fucks about all the stuff we’d asked them to do/not do (including carrying highlighter pens around the house without lids on and shouting about butt holes). I don’t really want to post a picture of two overtired children who are sobbing because I’ve cancelled tonight’s Talking Teddies (a play I put on using their teddies as the actors, it’s pretty funny if I do say so myself 🤣) so here’s a pic to remind me - and you, if your evening has rapidly gone downhill - that it IS all worth it, even if you are quite tempted to open the front door and keep on walking. Tomorrow is a new day.
Reasons my children have put forward for not being asleep:
- They need a drink
- They need a wee
- They want a cuddle
- “Henry is keeping me awake”
- “Jude is keeping me awake”
- There is a slug in their bed (this is simply not true, but I had to check)
- They have growing pains
- They forgot to clean one tooth
- They’re scared of the window
- It’s too hot
- It’s too cold
- They want ‘a little chat’ about wrestling
- They can’t find the toy that came free with a Happy Meal in 2014
- They are worried about the shadow of Brexit hanging over UK businesses (may have made the last one up). THEY ARE NOW IN BED ASLEEP ... just as I head off to bed, anticipating the baby’s night feeds. Isn’t three a lot of children? 🤣
I swear nursery is like some kind of alternative universe where kids demonstrate a fondness for foods they would literally throw in your face at home. “He really enjoyed his Thai green curry/fajitas/quorn lasagne/[insert any other meal you’ve tried a hundred times unsuccessfully at home]. He ate all of it!” At first, I’d have to stop myself from saying, ‘Sorry, he ate the fishcakes? Is this a wind-up?’ and one time I was almost certain they were giving me a food report for the wrong kid when he ‘liked the salad in particular’ 🤔but this week Jude clarified what’s really been going on with his sudden plate-clearing superpower: ‘I just like nursery cooking’🤷🏼♂️ Wonderful. Thanks buddy. Now I know 😆[And yes, for the very eagle-eyed among you, his shoes are on the wrong feet]
Nope, I didn't delete it! 🤣 #dildogate
One for the mantelpiece? 😄
Update 25/04: it’s now £1.99.
⭐️🌟99p KINDLE alert! 🌟⭐️
If e-books tickle your pickle, The Unmumsy Mum Diary is an Amazon ‘daily deal’ - just 99p for TODAY only (it’s taken me until teatime to remember to post, sorry 🤦🏼♀️😂). If you don’t have a Kindle, you can download to your phone/tablet (perfect for night feeds 😴) with the Kindle app. LESS THAN A POUND!
This (blurry iPhone pic) was me leaving the Royal Devon & Exeter hospital, 4 hours after giving birth to Wilf. I had all the essentials covered: comfy trainers ✅ husband’s PJ bottoms over an adult nappy ✅ baggy easy-boob-access top ✅ big coat (it was 4am and 12 days before Christmas) ✅ and I’m so very glad the world’s media wasn’t camped outside the front door as I waddled out saying “funny thing, it feels like the baby came out of my arse” and James started effing and jeffing about not being able to lengthen the car seat straps in the dark. Wouldn’t change a thing, obvs.
It’s crazy to think that if this scamp had been born just 12 days earlier, he’d be starting school this September 😱 In some ways, he already seems quite grown up, possibly because he idolises his big brother and looks like a giant next to his baby brother. Yet in many other ways, he still seems so little. He still pronounces yellow ‘lellow’, when Henry winds him up he shouts, ‘Henry’s telling LIARS!’ and he can’t get to sleep without sniffing Mummy Pig’s little stinky stick feet. It’s like a glorious* inbetweeny age and though I am sure he would have been fine starting school, I’ll admit I’m glad we’ve got him at home for another year.
*’glorious’ excludes the dissatisfaction he shows at mealtimes and his refusal to walk if he deems the walk ‘boring’ (i.e. all walks).
‘How did you know you wanted three?’ is a question I get asked a lot. The short answer, and I know it’s a wanky one, is that I just knew. Not immediately - I certainly didn’t grow up thinking I would have three, I always imagined having two [girls, ahem 🤣] and even after Jude was born I was pretty adamant that we were ‘done’ (terrible expression that, but you know what I mean). I even sold all the baby bits because it seemed so very unlikely that we would ever ‘go back there’ (let’s be honest, I’d made no bones about how hard I’d found the whole baby stage, twice!)
Yet as school loomed for Henry, and Jude became a toddler, I started to feel incredibly broody. It’s hard to explain the intensity of that feeling without feeling guilty as I don’t think I‘d ever felt it in quite the same way before and I’m worried that may sound as though Henry and Jude weren’t wanted which is absolutely not the case - both were planned and wholeheartedly wanted - it’s just that the longing I had for a third baby was like a force had taken over my mind and my body and all of a sudden that maternal ‘cluckiness’ I‘d been convinced had bypassed me was right there. I have wondered if that change in feeling was down to my hormones and age (I was 24 when I had Henry compared to 30 when I fell pregnant with Wilf, I don’t know if that makes any odds?!) but I also think it was five years’ of ‘we find this parenting thing hard, too!’ messages and comments from you lovely lot which made me realise that I WAS a good parent and that maybe, just maybe, if I had another I would allow myself to fret less and enjoy it more.
I am definitely fretting less. I am also drinking him in more, not in a strange liquid cannibalism kind of way, I just mean I stare at him a lot. Of course, I am still absolutely bloody clueless and even if I had 20 kids I would probably still be Googling my ridiculous concerns at 3am but I have cut myself more slack this time and it is to you lot that I owe my thanks for that. Three is definitely our magic number and even though #blessed makes me want to dig my eyes out with a rusty spoon, I know we are ❤️
I've blogged! Why I've never regretted having children and why I was offended when it was insinuated that I might have ...
Today we went to the wedding of one of my oldest school friends 👰I was a bit worried about how Wilf would cope (the bigger boys are having a sleepover at Granny’s house) but in the end, he was a star. Admittedly, babies + weddings are not the *most* relaxing combo and there was a lot of rocking, bouncing and ssshhhing during the speeches. Wilf also farted during the minute’s silent reflection in church and did a poo just in time for the group photograph 👍🤣 But I loved having him there to cuddle, particularly as today also happens to be my birthday 🎁🙊. We stayed to watch the first dance before the crying really kicked in (from Wilf, not me, though weddings do make me totes emosh) and then we called it a night. As birthdays go, ‘twas a lovely one. Thanks to everyone who gave me the nod of encouragement to wear a suit after my dilemma on Instagram stories yesterday. I opted for a bright orange splash of colour which thankfully steered me away from funeral-chic (though on reflection, it did have a hint of Easy Jet about it). Thirty-one, I’m ready for you 😄
This right here is my (biggest) little boy’s dream coming true today when he met Jace Norman aka Henry from his fave show Henry Danger (for fans of the show - yes he has grown 😳and yes that is such a mum thing to say 😂). If you were to look up ‘starstruck’ in the dictionary, I’m pretty sure it would say: ‘when Henry Turner met Henry Danger’. I have NEVER seen him so wide-eyed, lost for words and positively shaking with excitement. I was there on hand like a rained-on and frumpy wingwoman, carrying his bag and coat while whispering, ‘ask him a question, say something, say anything, SPEAK!’ (as I smiled awkwardly at this trendy teenager, I’ve literally never felt so old in my life 😭🤣). Luckily, Jace is clearly used to having tiny superfans (and their mums) going shy in his presence and was really lovely to Henry, encouraging a chat and a handshake. We were there to watch a screening of the new Nickelodeon movie Blurt and just now on the train home, Henry informed me that it was one of the best days of his LIFE, ever, which made me feel a bit weepy. Days like today don’t come around very often and it was so nice to spend time just us two again ❤️
Last week I launched a brand new range of kids’ t-shirts and I honestly can’t believe how well they’ve gone down, particularly this one 😁
As with all items, 10% of profits go to Tommy's and all tees have a ‘Global Organic Textile Standard certification’, which means they’ve been audited for a wide range of sustainability and social criteria, including fair pay and working conditions in the supply chain.
There are lots more designs already on the site and many more to come but I will be sharing those on the Unmumsy Mum Store page rather than here - I just wanted to give you a heads up as I had so much fun getting involved with designing these. Note: sizing info in comments.
It’s like Wilf’s thinking, oh God, not these giants again 🤣 I’m actually working today as there is just too much to do to keep ignoring it, but this was too much of a distraction 😍