Nature's Mothers Blog

Childbirth, Parenting and Other Passions

Better late than never… April 25, 2014


This is a short and rather belated report on how our Winter Soltice celebration actually turned out…!

We indeed did most of the things we mentioned in my post about it here, but somehow – habit perhaps?- Christmas day turned out to be a slightly bigger day than Solstice. Solstice was very lovely, mind you – a few friends came over and we just about managed to get a fire going (need to plan better next year!)  Also, in the run up to Christmas the girls began obsessing about the dreaded Santa, and we felt so mean telling them that Santa wasn’t real that we totally played the Santa game (noooooooo!!!). We also stole an idea from a friend and had elves come visit every night to hide the advent chocolates on the weeks before Solstice…! They left very cute little poems with clues on – the girls were very excited. But somehow Santa wrote them a massive letter each on Christmas Day…and I’m really not sure how this happened or what we were thinking! I think it just shows how conditioned, or how much social pressure there is with regards to Christmas. Basically, we didn’t want our children to feel left out. When our kids find out that we were lying to them one day, will they mistrust us? Hahaha…well, a few lessons learned for next Christmas, and at the very least Solstice was celebrated too, so that’s definitely a good start.

I’m not sure we can now undo Santa, but perhaps we can tone him down massively again. I don’t think they really believe in Santa, I think they see him in a fantastical way – and in our house he brought mainly charity shop gifts.  The book we got about St Nicholas (the only good kids one we could find) took ages to come and when it did it was 100% Christian, and even a bit preachy…I literally spluttered over it when reading it to my kids, and only read it once! (If you know my history, you would understand why this is an issue for me…you can read more about this here.)

It was, however, wonderful to just spend lots of family time in our lovely little low impact home, and spend lots of special time with friends too. It was also amazing to notice how quickly the days seem to lengthen after the Solstice – we really notice things like that living the way we do.

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Bird feeder we made as one of our advent activities – a half coconut shell, filled with peanut butter and topped with bird seed and meal worms!!! Lots of fun was had!

A much deserved cup of rooibos tea, after much wood chopping for our Solstice Fire!

A much deserved cup of rooibos tea, after much wood chopping for our Solstice Fire!

In other news, we have been very busy. At my one job – I work part time at Holifield Farm Project as a PA and event organiser –  I have been very busy organising Holifair Family Festival and Holifield Camping Weekend(a special needs event)!

When not at work I have been having fun with my kidlets, tidying, doing washing or creating a brand new website for my business, Nature’s Mother! I have had a couple of hiccups with my website – it was self designed (using my basic knowledge of dreamweaver) and was beginning to look a bit clunky, although still working. I used Wix.com to create a new website. It was gorgeous looking but business went almost completely dead – probably due to it being a “Flash” website – more about this here if you’re interested ( I sell very gorgeous amber necklaces, in case you didn’t know!) So I have now created a WordPress site which has pretty much just gone live. I would appreciate any liking of my facebook page and sharing of my website you can do, to help get me noticed by the Search Engines again. If anyone would like their pregancy/parenting/baby related website added to my links page, I’d be happy to do so, but would appreciate a reciprocal link.

Nature's Mother Amber Nekclaces and Bracelets

Nature’s Mother Amber Nekclaces and Bracelets

Another bit of rather scary news is that my little boy fell(out of the loft – which is a play space) and fractured his skull!! Thankfully he is absolutely fine, but it scared the living daylights out of us and we desperately wanted to wrap him in cottonwool for the rest of his days. But he is a toughie – and a climber! There is no stopping him! He is also totally wonderful (as are my girls) – he is starting to copy our words and said his first mini sentence yesterday. He gets very worried about flying insects – of which there are an abundance here – and yesterday he covered his ears when a bumble bee came near and shrieked :”Dada, bumble!” Naaaw! I can’t believe my baby is talking! I went away to a wedding for 3 days a few weeks back and thought that that may mark the end of our breastfeeding journey, but no! He is most certainly still my boobie monster!

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Leander Byron Leaf

For Erin’s birthday back in March we did a trip to London – I’ll save that for another blog! The apple orchard below our house is bursting into blossom and it is feeling gorgeous and springy – we are very lucky to live where we do! Happy Spring to all my Northern Hemisphere followers, and happy autumn to the rest of you! May happiness be with you!

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apple buds about to blossom

 

 

I jinxed it… December 7, 2013

Filed under: babies,Breastfeeding,Parenting,thoughts — naturesmother @ 10:07 am

I thought I should update you with the truth! Last month I posted about The end of an era. I said “…this may be the beginning of the days where I am not awake breastfeeding all night.” Well, I can confirm – it wasn’t! In fact in the last few nights I feel like I have been woken up every 10 minutes!  Now before anyone feels sorry for me, I feel that I should point out that even though I am thoroughly shattered (and should have gone to bed with the kids!), it is not all bad. My days of snuggling my little boy at night, undisturbed, are numbered and I do actually really treasure this time. He is still in bed with me, so it is pretty easy for me to just roll over and feed him when I am exhausted. I have tried sleeping with the girls, but he knows when I’m in the house and cries for me (even toddles through the dark looking for me…bless!).

However, I can now go out in the evenings…I even slept over at a friends house and he is totally fine when I am not there, and Erin and Ayla ADORE feeding him a bottle of oatley and snuggling him to sleep (something that he won’t do if I’m around). I, on the other hand, feel a little bit like a teenager having a chance to leave the house in the evening…something I have don’t think I have done once (without having a child with me) in the last 6 years! I even went to out with a friend to see the lovely Martha Tilston sing …woooo!

Hubby & I are going to try to go out to see a film next week. WITHOUT any children, for the first time in over 14 months! Wish us luck!

My Amazing Children!! 🙂

 

“in this country of billboards, covered in tits…” December 6, 2013

Filed under: Breastfeeding — naturesmother @ 9:19 pm

I really LOVE this poem. 🙂

 

The end of an era… November 2, 2013

Filed under: babies,Breastfeeding,Parenting — naturesmother @ 10:51 pm

This past week some lovely friends offered for us to use their house while we were away. As a complete contradiction to my previous post – I really enjoyed the creature comforts and am very grateful that all of our friends don’t live like us 🙂 We enjoyed hot baths and heating that came on at the flip of a switch. We had the choice of a dishwasher or washing dishes in hot water! The girls remained glued to the telly for the entire time.

I always find it quite funny because people try to communicate with my girls while a telly is on and they don’t respond. Sometimes people think they are being rude – but they are just totally and utterly absorbed in it.   We have a telly in our house but no aerial, so we can only watch dvd’s – and we tend to do much more playing than dvd’s so it’s a bit of a novelty. With the amount of adverts on tv I can only say that I am VERY happy with our choice. Erin started by saying, ‘wow mom, look that’s cool’ to every bit of plastic that was advertised – until I pointed out that they were all plastic. She, like I, knows where plastic eventually ends up. You only need to take a walk on a local beach, hear news like this or watch something like this. Very soon everytime an ad came on we’d be sitting there saying ‘plastic’, ‘more plastic’, ‘even more plastic’.  She gets it and she really cares about the earth and it’s creatures.  She would sacrifice her desire for a pink princess castle(or whatever), because she knows that in the end it is not going to do anyone good. I’m really proud of her! She also knows she can create her own games from all sorts of things, using a bit of imagination, and her and Ayla are very good at doing this kind of thing together (when they’re not fighting!) This is not to say we are not guilty of contributing to the plastic infestation – we do do plastic – but we’d like not to.

Anyway, I digress! What I really wanted to talk about it the end of an era with my little boy. He is almost 14 months old now and has just started walking. I have been breastfeeding (almost exclusively) for the last 14 months and plan to continue for as long as he wants it. The thing is, unlike the girls, he was showing very little interest in solid food (in any form…) and was feeding what felt like all night, every night.  I was/am constantly exhausted and therefore not the happiest person to be around. I am really for going with babies natural rhythm and am 100% pro feeding on demand, and extended breastfeeding, but I got the point where I had to weigh up whether I continued as I was – or reduced night feeds and perhaps became less exhausted and a better mother as a result.

When my friend said we could use her house while they were away it just seemed like the perfect opportunity…I decided to have an evening of one-to-one with each of my girls, using Oliver James’ love-bombing technique(something I’ve wanted to do for ages), and to see how Leander would cope without nighttime boobie(inspired by a friend who recently did something similar). Hubby was willing to have the other daughter and little Leander.  Leander has always refused a bottle – even with breast milk – he will play with it, but that’s it. I was so nervous and feeling so guilty about leaving Leander that I nearly changed my mind several times and it almost ruined my evening with the girls. But I know that hubby is a very capable and wonderful dad who is very close to him, and I made him PROMISE to call me if Leander cried (properly), and I’d come home.

I called late evening to find out that Leander was drinking Oatly happily from a bottle (!!) and that he’d been looking around for me but hadn’t cried. He is an amazing little boy and is quite used to being with hubby without me, when I’m at work. He woke up every 40 minutes the first night, and hubby got an idea of how exhausted I usually am. He drank a bit of milk the first couple of times and cuddled up to hubby and went back to sleep the other times, but at 2am he did throw a little tantrum. He screamed, kicked his legs and wouldn’t let hubby touch him, but thankfully this lasted less than 5 minutes and then he cuddled back into hubby and went back to sleep (we co-sleep). I went back at 7am and gave him a big feed and cuddle.

On the second night, Leander didn’t cry – not once. He slept for much longer periods and when he did wake, it was just to make sure daddy was there. He cuddled in and went straight back to sleep, no problems. I was really surprised – I thought this was going to be much harder.

Last night we all slept at our friends house but I slept with the girls and Leander hardly woke at all the whole night. His appetite for solids has increased massively, and although I feel a bit guilty about this and a bit like I’ve rushed him, it is a huge relief and I am already feeling less tired. I have been breastfeeding for the past 5 and a half years (except for 6 months whilst I was pregnant with Leander) and don’t get me wrong, it is wonderfully rewarding, my kids are blooming healthy and I absolutely love it, but it is exhausting.

So it is with both happiness and a certain sense of loss that I am moving into the next era. We are not having anymore kids, so this may be the beginning of the days where I am not awake breastfeeding all night. This just may be the beginning of days when I will not have a baby permanently on my boob. I feel sad, and I will miss it very much. But I also look forward to being a more energised and better mum. Here’s hoping anyway.

And this is all thanks to my lovely friends, without whom we would probably not had a chance to try this out for ages. Erin and Ayla really enjoyed the love-bombing too – I will save the details of that for another post…

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A letter to my baby boy January 14, 2013


Dear Leander,

I cannot believe that 4 months has gone by since you entered this world.  You are the happiest, most chilled out, loveliest baby I know. Ok, obviously I would say that…I am your mommy!

Getting to know you has been such an absolute delight:  from the moment I reached down and touched the top of your head as you were crowning just before you were born to watching you doze off on my breast just a few minutes ago.

Some of my favourite moments with you include holding you in my arms seconds after you were born, watching you breastfeed for the first time, climbing into bed with you a couple of hours after you were born and letting your smell and oxytocin inducing gorgeousness envelope me in bliss, watching you sleep, smile and nuzzling your neck.

Now you are a whopping 4 months old, well out of your 0-3 month old clothes and some of your 3-6 month clothes are on the small side. You are a proper little giggler now and it’s so contagious! I can’t look at you without getting an overwhelming sense of how much I love you, and how I just – selfishly – would like to freeze time and keep you in all your gorgeousness the way you are now.  You are  like a drug – intoxicating to the max – I want to bottle your smell, somehow store and save the way you make me feel.  I love the way you reach for me in your dreams at night, put a hand on my cheek or my chin and immediately settle knowing that your mama is close.  I love the way you wriggle close to me when you’re hungry or need comfort in the night and latch on to my breast.  I couldn’t not share my bed with you, that would be just too hard and too tiring for us both!

I love the milky smell of your breath, and I love spending most evening feeding you. Truly I do! I remember your big sister wanting to feed all evening – and being my first it spun me out a bit.  I wondered if it was necessary, whether I was spoiling her as some claimed, or worse still over feeding her. I also had the sense that my evenings, in fact my life, was no longer my own and this used to scare me a it. But now I know that either you are telling my body that you are growing and I need to make more milk, or you just want to be close to me and suck for comfort. And both are fine!  I also now know how quickly this time goes and I absolutely treasure and cherish it! I love the way you giggle uncontrollably when we snuffle your neck or tickle you, only a baby can laugh like that. I am so happy to be your mummy.

One thing daddy and I really enjoy is chatting to you.  You really make eye contact(and have done for months!) and you look so chuffed and joyful when we copy the sounds you make and give you a chance to answer back.  We have tried to get these chats on video, but you’re distracted by the camera…but they are so precious.  You can almost see the neural pathways forming as you have realised that you have control over your hands.  You have quick reflexes too and will have our bowl off the table in a second if we don’t keep our eyes on you!  You want to put everything in your mouth now, which we don’t mistake for you being hungry.  You are discovering, and this is the way you do it. You are also chewing on things and dribbling as your first teeth must be lurking under your gums, not too many months away from making their appearance. You have a lovely little amber teething necklace now, and I have one to match. You enjoy holding onto it and pulling it while you breastfeed just lately too.

Your sisters love you very much. You make them giggle when you accidently bash your rattle against your nose, or drop things repeatedly on the floor. They want to hold, cuddle and kiss you constantly, and it’s not unheard of for them to wake you up to do so! You love grabbing hold of their hair – this makes them shriek and giggle and you look so pleased with yourself.

My only one regret is that I can’t be fully with you 100% of the time, that I have other jobs to do, but in a sense this makes the undisturbed times with you all the more special. I am so grateful for your calm and happy soul! Our family would not be complete without you!

Lots of love

Your mummy

 

Natural ways to calm a fussy or teething baby! December 20, 2012


Some ideas for calming a fussy baby:

  • Get an amber teething necklace. Amber is a resin and works by releasing succinic acid, with it’s anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties, onto warm skin.  Have a look at our lovely genuine Baltic amber necklaces here.
  • Get some Nelsons Teetha – homeopathic camommila for teething.
  • Wear baby in a soft comfy sling – babes love being close to mum or dads hearts. Choose a sling or carrier that spreads babies weight evenly over both your shoulders and has a support across the lower back (You can join your local slingmeet to test a few)
  • Sing…babies don’t care if it’s off key, they love the sound of your voice
  • Rock, pat, dance, talk gently
  • Breastfeed -and don’t worry -babies can’t overfeed on the breast!
  • Take baby for a walk (my three are complete nature babies, they nearly always settle when we take them outdoors)
  • Drink chamomile tea..it’ll soothe your frazzled nerves, and if you’re breastfeeding it’ll work it’s magic on bubba too! (buying it loose leaf from a health food shop is cheapest, and you can get the quantity right – a teaspoon per cup)
  • Put a pot of chamomile tea in baby’s bath. Being in water can also be comforting and soothing.
  • Burn a couple of drops of lavender oil in an oil burner, or put a couple of drops in babys bath
  • Gentle baby massage, if baby likes it!
Do you have anymore natural tips?

 

The perfect gift for mum & baby this Christmas! December 17, 2011


Looking for something special for a baby or child for xmas? How about an amber teething necklace?!

They are £12.99 each and are made from genuine Baltic amber. They come in several different shades varying from ‘black’ to ‘sunshine’. There are matching ones for mums & dads too! Postage is FREE if you are in the UK!

To find out how amber works, to have a look at the various gorgeous designs, or to go to my online shop here

You can also find me on facebook here

Merry Christmas and a Happy new year to you all!

Blessings,

sharon

 

 
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