How To Look After Your Body And Mind As A Busy Mum

Let’s be honest, being a Mum can be pretty hard. By the time you’ve finished with all of the chores that you have to do, and your work, and you’re all done making bathtime fun with your kids... finding the energy to enjoy some time to yourself - whilst looking after your body and mind - is pretty futile.

What are you going to do, anyway, when you just want to curl up into a ball on the sofa? Starting those new fitness moves you've seen on various blogs and insta all of a sudden doesn't seem so appealing OR easy!

But there ARE many ways to look after your body and mind when you’re a busy Mum, and here are some of the best of them.

How To Look After Your Body And Mind As A Busy Mum

Water. Lots and lots of water

OK, we’ve heard this one floating (sorry) around a lot, but the truth is that water can help you to look after your body AND your mind. Not only does it give you more energy to take on that big-scary-Mum-day, but it also keeps your skin clean, and your body cleansed.

We need water for a multitude of reasons, and being dehydrated just isn’t good news. Ditch the coffee (OK, not all of the time) in favour of a water bottle, and try to keep one in your bag when you’re out and about.

You’ll be glad that you did because when you’ve got more energy, you feel like a goddess with super healthy skin.

Steer clear of the wine

Whilst most of us like to enjoy a glass of wine every now and again, it really doesn’t serve your body - especially your liver. Sure, there’s nothing wrong with alcohol in moderation, but if you’re going overboard, then it’s not great.

Unfortunately, a few Mums do turn to the vino for stress relief, but it could be impacting upon your sleeping habits (it’s hard to get into a deep sleep as a result), and making you feel a little more groggy the next day.

If you think that you’re stuck in a habit with this, then it’s a good idea to get in touch with an organisation like help4addiction.co.uk. Alcohol is also a depressant, which isn’t helpful in the long-run (lecture over).

Take some time out

The most important piece of advice in this entire guide is to take some time out, just for you. That’s right, nobody else, just you.

You want to go for a walk to think things through and listen to music? Do it! You want to take yourself out for dinner? Do that too. Whatever you decide to do, it’s a good idea to be alone for a while sometimes, just so you can get your thoughts together. Taking a step back could be exactly what you need.

Don’t stress, we’re not telling you to take yourself on a solo trip to the Bahamas for a few weeks. Just for a coffee (sorry, water), or to the park to read a book, or wherever it is that you can do to collect your thoughts.

Talk about your feelings

A lot of the time, we’re under this immense pressure to uphold the world around us as Mums. We think that admitting that things are hard, or that we need help, or that we’re simply not feeling good, shows that we’ve failed in some way.

If this sounds like your thought process, then you could look after your mind simply by saying, ‘I need a bit of help here, so that I can take some time to heal.’ That doesn’t mean that you’re running away from things, just because you need to spend an evening talking to a friend.

It simply means that you’re a human being, who feels things and sometimes struggles. Talking about this stuff is important.

Find your own self-care

OK, so we could talk about self-care until the cows come home, but the truth is that different things work for different people. Whilst there are some things that are guaranteed to help a little, like getting enough sleep, it is purely subjective.

You will find things that lift you up, and make you feel like your mind and body are in a good place. Just because Rachel at the school gates told you that yoga was like, really cool, doesn’t mean that you have to love it.

So…

If you want to look after your body and mind as a busy Mum, then remember these simple things... but ultimately, do what makes YOU feel great!).

Reasons Why You Should Start Saving Now To Better Your Family’s Future

saving for familys future
Working towards the future, there are all kinds of goals we might have in mind for our family. Invariably, many of these goals will be centered around our finances, because if we don't have the money in our bank accounts, we might inhibit our future and our family's future later on.

By setting saving goals early on, you can work towards bettering your family's future today, for the benefit all of you.

#1: Saving for those nice-to-have things your family wants

You don't need money to have a good time with your family, but let's admit it, a bit of cash in our pockets certainly helps. Set goals for something specific then, such as those bucket list travel destinations you have in mind, or on home improvements, such as a games room for you and the kids, and you will all benefit. Memories will be created, fun will be had, and you will create bonding moments that will strengthen your relationships.

#2: Save your money for those important life events that may affect your family

Your daughter's wedding? Your children's college fees? Moving your family to a new home? Some of these saving goals may not be set in stone at the moment, but they might be one day. The sooner you start saving your money, the more you will have to support yourself and your children when these life events start becoming a reality.

#3: Save money to support yourself after your retirement

You don't want to be financially dependent on your children when you are older, so you really do need to consider your retirement, no matter how far away it might be. By doing so, you won't have to carry on working, you will be able to enjoy your retirement, and if you need extra care as you get older, you will be able to afford care homes such as Porthaven instead of landing yourself on your children's doorstep.

#4: Save money to pay off your debts

If you are forever burdened by debt, you might not have the means to buy those nice-to-have things for your family, or for those important life events that may happen en route. You won't have the means to put a lot of money into your retirement fund either, and that will limit your lifestyle later on. Debt can inhibit you in lots of different ways, so to ensure you aren't beholden to them forever, start to put extra money into your savings to clear your debts, and use the debt advice here to climb out of the debt pit sooner.

#5: Save money for those emergency situations

Ideally, you should have two saving accounts: one account for your expected saving goals, and another for those life events that are unexpected. Your car might break down, for example, or you might lose your job. These events can eat into your regular savings, and that can scupper your family's short and long-term future. Therefore, set up an emergency fund for those 'just in case' moments, and despite the personal setbacks, you might be able to soften the financial blow.

So, have you set up a savings account yet? We hope we have given you sufficient incentive here for you to do so. Shop around your local banks if you haven't already done so, consider the advice here, and then start putting money away. Your family's future depends on it!

Pregnant? Top Steps to Take to Ensure Your Baby’s Health

The best situation for any foetus is for its mother to prepare her body before it has ever been conceived. There are a lot of medications, for example, that help a grown adult but could increase the risk of congenital disabilities or a miscarriage. Then there is the damage that drinking, smoking, and other recreational drugs can do to the baby while it is developing. There is a lot you can do before, during, and even after to ensure your baby has the best shot at life, so start today by following these steps:

Contact Your Doctor

It is not always possible to consult your doctor and prepare your body before you get pregnant. Sometimes it is a mistake, other times unexpected. For example, perhaps you have been trying for a baby for so long that you gave up, only to then discover that the pregnancy finally happened. Either way, once you find out it is best to visit your doctor for a consultation so that you can:

Get off Any Dangerous Medication

There are a lot of different medications that can harm a foetus that you will need to stop taking immediately. An example includes anti-depressants. You will need to work with your doctor to manage your mental health without the medication while pregnant.

Start Taking the Right Vitamins

There are a lot of vitamins you can take that will help your baby’s health, like folic acid. Folic acid has been proven to help your baby develop correctly and reduces the risk of abnormalities.

Stay Healthy and Active

Though it may seem contradictory to be active while pregnant, you do need to try. Exercise is an important part of a healthy body, which means you need to stay active throughout the entire experience. This will also help you bounce back faster and return to your pre-pregnancy weight easier.

How to Further Safeguard Your Baby’s Health in the Future

All the hard work you put into being healthy will not go to waste. It will help your baby develop correctly so that he or she can enjoy a healthy life right from the start. Make your effort go further, however, by visiting biovaultfamily.com to see how easy and beneficial it is to store your baby’s stem cells now. If they have a life-threatening disease or other illness in the future, they will then be able to access their healthy stem cells. Stem cell research is flourishing right now, and for good reason. Give your baby the opportunity to take advantage of their health in the future by safeguarding it today.

Your baby’s development should be your utmost priority. Do all you can to make your body the perfect haven, and prepare yourself further by taking classes and even making preparations to provide your child with the best chance medically in the future. Do this, and you will already have given your new baby a bright future.

Organising Your House With A Kid Friendly System

Your house is the haven of your life, and there's a lot of love and respect you put into those four walls. Your children, however, might not feel the same way about them, and forever leave their toys strewn around and put felt tip marker on the wall when they get too creative with their colouring book!

Kids can be messy, there’s no two ways around that, but if you have a proper organisation system that’s both effective and fun, you know your kids won’t have too much trouble in sticking to it! And that’s where a post like this can come in: here’s a couple of the best ways you can organise your house in a kid friendly system… or you can attempt to at least!

You can just imagine the mess that’ll be left after this! 

kids pillow fight

Have a ‘Dump Spot’

We don’t mean the rubbish bin, which can be overflowing when you’ve got 2 or more kids in the house, but an actual spot near the door or in the living room where kids can keep the things they need for tomorrow all in one place. It’s an easy way to make sure they’re grabbing everything they need for school in the morning, and never leaving without their maths book again.

You can assign boxes to this spot, to make sure each of your children has a designated area to put their things, whether it be their pencil case or their lunchbox. And it’s an easy way for you to make sure they start taking some responsibility - if they don’t grab what they need from a special spot that makes it easier for them to remember, they have no one to get stroppy with as a result!

Give Kids Their Own Areas

If your children feel like they’re never have any privacy or ownership over their own home, they’re not going to be too helpful in the organisation process. You want your children to always feel comfortable at home, and for example, teaching them that their toys belong to them means you keep them that bit happier. But on the other hand, it shows that their parents won’t be along to take them away or tidy them up, making them a little bit more responsible in the process…

After all, by teaching them that that area belongs to them and them alone, and that Mummy won't be along to tidy it up if they lose a toy they love, they’ll do everything they need to to keep it clean and tidy! And companies like Contemporary Architects can help you out with introducing this idea to your home, whether it be via a secret room/hatch within their own bedrooms, or an entirely new playroom extension you’ve always wanted to add onto your house.

Ready to get organised, as well as have your kids onboard? Well, now’s your chance to make sure your kids are growing up happy and healthy, within a house they helped to create themselves!

Ways To Make Your Life As Mummy, Easier

Whether you’re a Mum to five children, or you’ve just got the one special little bundle of joy, one thing we all have in common is that we’re constantly running around after them. Being a Mum is an exhausting job in itself, and then of course there’s the housework, our jobs, our spouses, and also trying to fit time in for yourself. One thing that all parents are looking for, is how to make their lives easier with little hacks here and there, especially when it comes to cleaning. So take a look at these fabulous ways to make your life as Mummy, easier.

make life easier

Invest in Tougher Products

While it’s understandable that you want to save every spare penny, buying store own brands of cleaning products might not always get the job done. Those hard dried stains on your hob just won’t come off with a simple spray of antibacterial now! Take a look at these highly sought-after products to make your life much easier when cleaning:

  • Elbow grease - and not the hard work kind either. This product is amazing for use on hard surfaces and even fabric! Simply spray, wait a little while, and wipe clean.
  • Zoflora is a disinfectant that comes in a range of incredible smells. It can be used to go over surfaces that wouldn’t otherwise smell nice. With so many uses for Zoflora, and at such a cheap price, you can have your home germ free and smelling amazing in no time!
  • The Pink Stuff is a creamy paste that’s perfect for cutting through grime and grease. Popularly used on oven doors to make them come up completely clean, it can be used pretty much anywhere around the kitchen. Again, simply let it do its job and wipe away with a damp cloth. Job done!

Modify Your Home

Sometimes, the worst job when it comes to cleaning is trying to get stubborn stains out of carpets, so why have them in every room? Consider putting oak laminate flooring by Factory Direct Flooring in the rooms that your children (and you) eat and perform messy play in so that you’re able to simply sweep up, mop, and still have time for that cup of coffee you’ve been craving all day. The same goes for surfaces in your home, try to keep them easy to wipe clean so that you’re not spending hours cleaning up after everybody, and you can enjoy time with them instead.

Consider Alternative Ways of Keeping your Home Clean

Fed up of vacuuming? Yeah, pretty much everyone is these days! However, you can now invest in a robotic vacuum to do all of the work for you! Simply set it to the room(s) you want, and let it do the work for you! All you’ll have to do is empty it from time to time!

Get Everyone Involved

Finally, rather than playing maid to everyone, why not get them all involved? Create chore charts for your children. Teaching your children to take responsibility of chores at a young age will help them later in life, and also give you even more time to sit with your feet up and a mug of hot coffee.

In case of emergency: What to do if you think your child needs medical attention

It is something no parent likes to think about: their child going into hospital. While going in for an emergency treatment or checkup can be a stressful experience, it is something every parent needs to read up on so that they can keep their child safe and healthy. I have outlined some essential information to read up on so that in the event you do need to rush them in, you won’t be wasting any precious time and can get your child seen to as soon as possible. 

doctor medial emergency

When to go to A&E

The first thing to consider when you think your child may need urgent medical attention is what symptoms to look out for that are a cause for concern. Things such as a high temperature, difficulty breathing, a bad fall where they potentially hit their head, loss of consciousness, are all things that you need to be vigilant for and act on quickly. The other thing to look for, which may seem initially obvious, is what your child is telling you about any pain they are in. As a parent there is so much you have to deal with and a consequence of that is that every now and again you will push something your child said aside and dismiss it. The thing you need to do here is to simply ask some easy follow up questions and keep a mental note of if your child has complained of this symptom before, if this is the case they do indeed need a trip to A&E.

Keep calm and carry on

If you do need to make the trip to the hospital, this can be a distressing time for a child who perhaps doesn’t understand exactly what is going on. To this end, it is a good idea to find strategies on how to keep your child calm in these circumstances so that you limit how potentially upset your little one may become. A good idea is to pack a small bag with you before you leave for the hospital that includes some snacks and drinks, alongside some books, toys, and games to keep them well fed and entertained. By providing your child with some distraction you will give them the opportunity to be calm until they can be seen.

Knowing your rights

When you see a doctor, be it your local GP or at the hospital, your child is legally required to receive the best care possible and be treated with the utmost respect. If, when you are in A&E, you find that your child is not being taken seriously, or the that the care they are receiving is subpar, then you may want to look into pursuing a case of medical negligence. The Medical Negligence Experts can help by giving you legal advice and representation so you can get some justice.

Taking your child to the A&E is always a scary moment but knowing the early signs of illness and how to prepare in advance, you will be able to make the process go smoothly.

Teenager’s First Holiday with Friends & being Grateful for Social Media

teenagers first holiday

So the time has come. My 18 year old son has gone off on his first holiday abroad.

When children are small, you can't imagine them doing something like this. Nor can you imagine EVER allowing them to... the thought of it is just too much.. so scary and worrying and it's like they'll never be old enough to even consider it anyway..... Our babies being in a foreign land without us to look after them and make sure they're safe? No way!

I know we've heard it before but feelings don't change just because children grow up. I still see my gorgeous, precious baby boy when I look at Teen. I still worry about him every waking moment... now more than ever! At least when they're small we know where they are all the time! When they're out there in the big wide world it's scary for us parents!

But we have to let go. Unfortunately.

Teen is an actual adult now. Not that he acts like one you understand. He's still incredibly stupid at times and does silly things.. I could write a post as long as my arm listing daft things he's done and situations he's got himself into.... he drives me nuts!

The day before his holiday he bleached his hair! It turned a lovely (not) shade of yellow which made him look like a right weirdo but he thought it was brilliant, and of course he's right when he says it'll grow out in a matter of weeks! He likes to push boundaries in all aspects of life and I guess when we were young, we all did crazy things too... it's all part of growing up!

Eminem springs to mind!

At the same time though, Teen can be sensible when he needs to be and can certainly look after himself, as well as anyone else. So I'm hoping he has this sensible hat on most of the time (hmmm) he's away and keeps his wits about him because being on holiday with a load of mates, drinking and most likely going a bit crazy... I do worry, a LOT!

He's gone to Outlook Festival in Croatia. Not just a holiday then, A FESTIVAL!!! There's been boat parties booked and DJ's lined up that he can't wait to see... there are loads of people going that he knows, girls and boys, not just his little group, which makes me feel a bit better... safety in numbers and all that... but it DOES sound like it's going to be one long, alcohol fuelled, insane week of paryting! (I'm a bit jealous, ha!).

He's been so excited about it! He wanted to go to this particular festival last year but he wasn't old enough. Had to be eighteen. Not sure I would've been comfortable with that though, he seemed so much younger last year.... but he didn't go so that's ok! This week I spent my time making sure he had everything he needed, all his clothes were washed and ironed (I spoil him), and he'd packed everything. I'd made lists for him so he didn't forget stuff and generally fussed around, feeling anxious.

His flight was very early in the morning and he was staying at a friends house the night before as they were all getting a taxi from there. I have to admit to not sleeping a wink, worrying that he'd forgotten something, but, and this is certainly a plus side to having social media.... I was checking his SnapChat continuously and could see he'd got to the airport, checked in and was eating the obligatory airport fry up for breakfast! Phew!

He messaged me from the plane when he got on to let me know they were taking off and then when they landed, bless him. I was glad of this. How parents coped in the past with no mobile phones is beyond me!

I've been keeping up with everything so far via his SnapChat and Instagram. I've seen inside their villa, the beach, the DJ's, the amazing looking festival at night and the drunk friends haha! Feeling thankful for social media right now.... it's such a godsend in times like these. When teenagers start going out and about, no matter where it's to, just being able to see some kind of update somewhere means that they're ok. Peace of mind. We've also been messaging here and there and I can confirm he's having a great time!

Of course he ran out of money fairly early on.... I'm annoyed that he hadn't budgeted at all but I'm not surprised one bit. I received lots of nice phone calls and Face-times that day, buttering me up so he could ask me to transfer him some money!! Teenagers are REALLY good at this! I got the 'But I can't buy any food and I'm starving' spiel and the 'I'll pay you back I promise' line that I hear more times than literally any other sentence known to man! Again, technology comes to the rescue in the shape of banking apps on our mobile phones, so I was able to transfer some money to him instantly and he could immediately see it in his account. A friend of mine used to work in a travel agency years ago and she said the most common thing that happened in her store was parents coming in to send money to their teenagers who were on holiday!!!! At least I didn't have to leave the house! He WILL be paying me back though 😉 Famous last words!

Anyway, he's due back soon. Thank goodness! Not sure I could afford for him to stay out there any longer hehe! I've been keeping up with Outlook Festival hashtag itself on Insta, Snapchat and Twitter... it's funny seeing lots of random people who I know will be there with, or least in the same vicinity as my boy, giving me some great insight. I just wish I had all his mate's Snapchat accounts so I could nosey at those, ha... a bit stalkery I know but that's what you need to resort to as a parent of a Teen....  I used to insist on knowing his passwords when he was a younger teen but they get to a certain age and you obviously can't do this any longer... they do need their privacy, much to my dismay! Of course I would never add his mates on social media.... they would laugh in my face and probably think I was creepy!

I can't wait to see him upon his return and give him a big squeeze and kiss! He'll be so happy to be back home but will probably need to sleep for a week... meanwhile I'll be ploughing through his washing! I don't care though, we've all missed him so much and all I want is for him to be home safe and sound.

Another milestone reached and passed in my son's life!

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