A Mother's Work Meme

When Pret-A-Mummy "tagged" me yesterday via mother.wife.me with the Mother's Work meme, I had to do some fast research into what a meme actually was.  So, I think I have a handle on it now - be gentle with me :)  I don't Twitter yet so have no idea what a hashtag is!
Apparently it goes like this:

* Please post the rules
* Answer the questions in as much or as little detail as suits you
* Leave a comment on mother.wife.me so we can keep track of the meme
* Tag 3 people and link to them on your blog
* Let them know you tagged them
* Tweet loudly about taking part (well ok, that isn’t a rule, but how about if we start a
hashtag - #amothersworkmeme)

Questions:

1. Did you work before becoming a mum?
2. What is your current situation?
3. Freestyle – got your own point you’d like to get across on this issue? Here’s your chance…


Lastly, I'm tagging Older Mum, Tales of Stepford & The Secret Life of an Unknown Housewife

So rules posted, here's my answers to the questions:

1.  Did you work before becoming a mum?
I had my first child in my mid 20's & was in full employment then, I was intending to go back to work but fate has a way of throwing a spanner into the works & I could not return for personal reasons.  I have always worked, babysitting, Saturday work in Ravel's (great gig, lots of lovely shoes!), temp office work in the school holidays (zzzz) & worked in the City until I had my first child.  Fast forward 20+ years & having had another baby, I am still working but in a totally different field, took 6 months maternity leave this time & back on the horse ever since.

2.  What is your current situation?
I have had my own business now for many years, this particular one for 12 years now, I work  the business around the baby, it suits us & brings in a decent living.  No commuting & I'm the boss of me.

3.  Freestyle
I couldn't & wouldn't go back to being an employee.  I had to find a way to work for myself years ago as we needed the second income & I've never looked back.  The friends I have that have returned to work after a year all requested part-time hours or flexi-hours or in one case 3 very long days instead of 5 shorter ones.  None have had their requests granted.  I find it all quite upsetting to hear about their struggles & although they've all gone back to work, only time will tell if they can sustain it, the travelling & childcare costs.

Pancakes for Tea!

Shrove Tuesday is upon us again, also known as Pancake day, the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday which is the first day of Lent.  It's called Pancake Day because it's the day traditionally for eating pancakes as they were a way to use up any stocks of milk, butter and eggs which were forbidden during the abstinence of Lent.

We love pancakes of any description, Mr J makes the best ones & annoyingly he just chucks in the ingredients for pancakes of all descriptions into a bowl, no measuring & they come out perfectly every time!!!  His Sunday flapjacks made with buttermilk are a fabulous indulgence, I always eat too many.


So for tea this evening we finished with pancakes & the obligatory flipping & (nearly always) catching again, drizzled with lemon juice & lightly sprinkled with sugar.  Mr J (who can afford the calories darn him) had his drenched in golden syrup.  

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What keeps you awake at night??

I read recently that you should blog what keeps you awake at night.  Really?  Since I had Baby Chick life has been given a pink, rosy hue but also so very full & the days (and nights!) have flown past.  If I could stay awake long enough after I slide under the duvet, sinking into the memory foam mattress, I'm not sure I would be thinking about blogging and if I did there would be no way I would want to wake myself up and write it down!  I'm asleep in about 2 minutes flat and into the land of dreams....

... maybe I should blog what I dream.  I did keep a dream diary for a while that was grief driven, my dreams then were so vivid then that I remembered them for hours instead of minutes after I got up.  I can still recall some of them now but its only when reading my dream diary again that I remember them all.  Now by the time I reach the kitchen to make a cuppa, my dreams have been absorbed into a place where nothing can reach them except for a brief flicker of a memory of something or someone, sometimes ......

I'm very grateful to the sleep fairies that Baby Chick is a great sleeper, sleep deprevation is no fun! 

What, if anything keeps you awake at night??

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Happy Valentines Day!

Vanilla cupcake with pink butter icing baked by moi, choc hearts by M&S
"There is only one happiness in life - to love and be loved.” - George Sands

or maybe.....

“Love is only a dirty trick played on us to achieve continuation of the species.” – Somerset Maugham

& just because ....

"When you are in love you can’t fall asleep because reality is finally better than your dreams.”  - Dr Seuss

What say you?? 

I was thinking back to Valentines past today.  The other half & myself would send each other soppy but sweet cards, I would get flowers & a present & we would go out to dinner with all the other lovestruck couples ;)  I do look back on those days & smile ......

These days we don't go out to celebrate it but I still find ways to mark the day.  Its easy to evolve into cynics about the commercialism of the day rather than thinking of the romantic meaning of it all.  I know it may be a cliche but I'm a romantic to the core but I didn't then & don't now need an excuse to tell my other half that I love him or need to celebrate it on just one day.  But I also can't resist the plethora of heart shaped choccies out there!!


Will you be celebrating Valentines Day?? 

 
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What does Love mean to you...

As Valentines Day approaches I have a question for you all...

What does love mean to you? 



Some of the "answers" I have found along the way are:

Love is being accepted for who you are....the good, the bad & sometimes ugly...

Love is Freedom, where I am free to be me in every way, shape & form.  I like this....

Butterflies in your tummy.

Letting people play with your favourite toys -  from a 3 year old :)

Do you remember the Love Is cartoons??  We used to collect the relevant ones & I came across a small pile recently when clearing out a drawer, it was good to remind myself of the delicate little sayings.... Love Is... sharing a hammock, we had a huge one slung between two apple trees in our garden & we used to lay there BC (before children) I remember the bliss - of swaying in the fresh air, the warmth of the sun, eyes closed, snuggling in....


Love means everything to me, I am a very kissy, cuddly mummy/person, a day hasn't gone past in the last 20 plus years that I haven't had my daily dose(s).  My memories of my bear hugs from my son & now the feathery light kisses I get from Baby Chick mean the world to me.

So.... what does love mean to you??

Love Is .....  you fill in the blank...........................................

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Food for our Children

I read something on the internet recently about baby feeding, I love to read about anythng to do with health & nutrition. The article said that a pediatrician had once said it's best to look at a child's diet in terms of what they eat over a course of a week rather than stressing over each meal.  I tend to agree but putting it into practice is a little different in reality.  I think as Mothers we all possibly have an inbuilt part that makes us worry about what is going in, how much stays in & the quality of it all!!

Baby Chick started life as a voracious feeder, but didn't take to weaning as well as I thought she would but over time she has become a decent eater.  I haven't deprived her of chocolate, crisps, fizzy drinks etc, I just haven't offered her them, she has no idea they exist at present :))  In time I know she will go to parties & be offered enough sugar to feed a horse but it will be a treat not the norm. 

I feed her on nutritious, whole foods, making as much as I can myself (& filling the freezer so there is no room for our food!).  I did have some jarred baby foods in the cupboard for times when I may need them or to add to some of my homemade food, but now its just totally home made as some of them made me shudder at the taste & smell!  Who thinks this food is palatable??  I realise this takes up a lot of time but balancing a childs diet is so important & eating habits are formed when they are very young & at this age she is still developing her tastes.  I am hoping Baby Chick won't become a fussy eater, but if I have to sneak healthy food into her diet at some point (thankfully she eats well now) I will.   I feel a batch of courgette muffins coming on LOL!

And as you know I love baking & am looking forward to baking with my girl & us munching on our homebaked, reduced sugar cakes & biscuits.  I shall be experimenting over the next few months, really looking forward to trying out some recipes.

So, are you a mummy worrier when it comes to feeding your baby/child, I know I am, but do try to look at Baby Chick & tell myself she is happy, healthy, a very good weight & rarely is under the weather, so I must be doing something right!  I hope I can convince myself!

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Toothbrushes on parade!

We've been tooth cleaning since Baby Chick got her first teeth through.  She got them fairly early & then it seemed they appeared daily (slight exaggeration) until she had 16 of the little beauties.  She has these diddy little molars now that are so cute & yes I know I shouldn't get so excited about these shiney, white, perfect teeth!  Its such a responsibility, teaching her how to brush her teeth, she gets it, its just not that thorough on her part, but at her age, its a good start.

We started with wiping her teeth over with a muslin, then went on to the Finger Brush, which worked well until she decided that biting the finger (mine) that was in the finger brush was more fun!  Lovely soft bristles plus some nodules on the back of it to massage sore baby gums gently.  Miss Baby Chick, like her sibling before her, never really suffered with teething that much & the very few times she did I can recommend Weleda Chamomilla granules or drops, but other than that she would just bite hard on something & get on with it! 

Then there was the Brush Baby which was & still is very successful, whoever invented this is a genius as it covers upper & lower, back & front teeth all at once depending on whether the mouth is open or closed & she likes to chew on it which rubs the flexible tiny bristles over the teeth, its a really gentle way to introduce teeth cleaning.



Then came the Banana Brush, yellow & curved like a banana (surprised?), made from bendy silicone, very easy to grasp, she likes playing with & chewing on it so it cleans in a random way but I also use it to clean her teeth myself.


We also have a silicone baby toothbrush with a guide disc on it which prevents said baby from sticking it too far into her mouth (we had some gagging episodes with the usual longer handled toothbrushes) which she loves so this is the one we are encouraging her to use herself.



Then we have a few of the regular baby toothbrushes (are you still awake?) with soft bristles, she will use (read chew) these but when I use them I have to be extra gentle as I think they aren't as friendly on the gums as they could be.  They are just a miniature version of an adult toothbrush.


And yesterday we bought a new brush that brushes 3 surfaces of the tooth at the same time, I got the adult version for myself, why should she have all the fun ;)  which we will be trialling soon.

So, a little tour of the tooth cleaning paraphenalia, all designed to take the stress out of keeping her teeth healthy.  Now I have to take her to the dentist & make it all look fun, ideas on a postcard please, not looking forward to it at all!

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