Wednesday, 17 July 2013

On the move ...

There you have it. The boy is moving now. I don't mean rolling on to his stomach and then very slowly once again on to his back. No, I mean full on hand-knee, hand-knee crawling like a professional. Like someone who has been crawling for the whole of their life. And, 'where did this come from?' I hear you cry. well, let me tell you this - I haven't the foggiest. One minute this boy was helpess and completely dependent on me and my boobs. Now,  NOW he can just about rock up where ever he likes (within reason). I mean he can't quite open a front door yet, drive a car yet, climb the stairs yet etc etc: But, within our 4 walls. The 4 walls that we call home this boy is able to be where ever it is he wants. If he wants to be in the kitchen - he can. If wants to be under the table - he can. If he wants to strum our free standing guitar - he can.I could go on. But, some things like - If he wants to play in the fire - He can, just sound so wrong (because they are. playing with fire is never safe. Never).
He appears to have grown up an awful lot the last month. I say that, yet this whole crawling thing has really snook up on me and has sort of reduced me to a blubbering mess. He is still a little boy. A little BABY boy. isn't he? He was so tiny and dependent only a few months back. Now he is eating curry and wearing sandals. If that isn't growing up then I don't know what is!

Monday, 15 July 2013

Mompreneur Mondays #2

Is it that time of the week already? Is it Monday already? Yes! Does that mean another does of Mompreneur-ism? YES!!

So, here we are at week number 2 of our 'Mompreneur Mondays' and I would like to introduce you to our Mommy with a business numero dos. That mommy being Cary Burchall, Mommy of Noah (10.5 months) from Wolverhampton. As you know, this Mommy has a business and wishes to tell us about it and of course we wish to listen. :-)

Carly gives you 'Virtuoso Music Services and Virtuoso Music Mites' 


Virtuoso Music Carly? Can you tell us a little about this?
"Virtuoso Music Services is a music agency that provides music tuition to pupils in Dudley, Wolverhampton, Walsall and Staffordshire. We match pupils with professional teachers, with the convenience of having music lessons in your own home, and a guarantee that we can meet any pupil's musical requirements.
Music Mites Carly? Can you tell us a little about this also/
"Music Mites are music, singing, movement and sensory classes for babies through to pre-schoolers. Our classes are varied, exciting, fun and progressive, enabling children and babies to develop their musical ability in a fun and relaxed environment!
The classes are highly interactive with lots of visual stimuli and Kodaly methods and practices are established. Children learn to play on high quality instruments from the age of 3 months with others in their age range.
 Children with their Mommies attending Music Mites.

Montgomery and I went along to 'Music Mites' a few Fridays ago and we had a wonderful time. My little man loves music and loves banging a drum. So, 'Music Mites'  is perfect for him as I'm sure it is for many of your little ones out there. Carly has a real way with her little music mites and keeps them engaged thoroughly throughout the session. 

 
"Virtuoso Music Services started in 2011 when I discovered I had a very long waiting list for vocal lessons. At the time I had been teaching singing privately for several years as well as working full time firstly as a primary teacher and then as a vocal/curriculum music teacher for Birmingham Music Services and just did not have the time to take on any more pupils – but apparently there were a lack of singing teachers in Wolverhampton. Sooo… I came up with the idea of finding those teachers and subcontracting work out to them. This worked really well and as I was always being asked if I taught the piano or knew someone that taught guitar I decided to branch out in to other instruments and music area too.
Music Mites was an idea that I had at the same time but I had to write it into the three year business plan due to a lack of available time (!) and it was only at the end of last year when I was on maternity leave with my son that I decided to just go for it and get the idea off the ground.
Drawing on my knowledge of music, singing and teaching both from my own private teaching and my work with the music services I started to write my own scheme of work in January and in May of this year Music Mites was launched!"
And, what a launch it was! Drawing on my own opinion and other Mommies out there- 'Music Mites'  is really something special when it comes to the world of 'baby classes'. There really is nothing more rewarding than watching your little one learn something highly valuable whilst having the up-most fun. Cary is a fabulous leader and really engages with each child in the session. She takes time to explain what it is you are doing and how it helps with your child's development. To me, that's one of the great things about 'Music Mites' not only is Montgomery learning. But, I too am learning how to help him develop and experience new things.


So, have I got you all excited and desperate to turn your little one into a Music Mite? If so, the following may be of interest to you:
Classes run on a Friday Morning at St Bartholomews church Hall in Penn. These classes have proved extremely popular. So, a new class is to be launched in September at Christ church in Tettenhall. With all this popularity Carly has decided to branch-out and start a 'Swing-sling' class (which will trial in the summer holidays). These classes involve simple yet fun dance routines with babies in sling/baby carriers – a great way for mums and dads to get fit, have fun and bond with their little ones!

If you wish to know more about Carly and 'Music Mites' why not give their Facebook page a like:

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Music-Mites-Wolverhampton/249860475047060

Wednesday, 10 July 2013

Our BLW Journey Continues ...

Following on from my previous post:- Montgomery's BLW Story - Where I expressed my "6 months! Ah they need to eat food now!" worries. However, I also expressed my resolution to those worries. That being - BLW ( Baby led weaning) Not for everyone, one understands. But, for me. Yes! But, for us. Yes! As a family BLW just seems to work and makes us happy. Montgomery loves food almost as much as Mommy and Daddy does now ;-)

 Tomatoes!

My little man is a complete sucker for tomatoes. He loves them. He pops them in his mouth, rolls them over his gums snapping down when the time is right causing the tomato to ooze all down his chin as he smiles like a cheshire cat. Above is a photograph of Montgomery learning how to be well behaved and well mannered when eating out. We were indulging at Cafe Latuskes and I was sharing my chilli with him. :-) He is a monkey!

Is that another tomato hiding there Montgomery?

Lately, I have noticed a real change in his eating. He still isn't eating everything that you put down in front of him. But, he is certainly eating more. Alot more. He does still play however. But, I see it more as exploration and gaining a relationship with food. I guess, he is just learning to trust it! He tends to enjoy his lunch most of all out of his 3 meals. But, we are getting there. He is just taking his time. 
It's exciting watching him eat. I love watching him eat!


I offer Montgomery everything. I just don't add salt or give him honey. But, everything else he is welcome to. Even spare ribs ...

 Even spare ribs ...

The only problem I find with BLW is that nothing is yours anymore, foodwise. If you are eating it and he sees it, he wants it and he has it. End of. No questions asked. He reaches out and like a thief in the night plucks it right from your hands or plate.

Little thief stole my coffee biscuit.

I recently joined the Facebook group 'Baby Led Weaning Wolverhampton and West Midlands' and attended a picnic in the park which was lovely and a great way to meet other Mommies and BLWers. If you are new to this method of eating or wish to know more, you really should join the group above, It's great!

Picnic in the park.

To finish off this post, I leave you with this:





Enjoy each other and enjoy your meal times.

Tuesday, 9 July 2013

Mompreneur Mondays #1

Today I launch my new feature - 'Mompreneur Mondays.' Every Monday I will be talking to a Mommy with business and helping them to spread the word.

This week I am speaking to the lovely Sarah, mother of 2 boys, Dylan who's nearly 3 and Ethan who's nearly 1. Not only does Sarah juggle the craze of family life. But, she also manages to throw her own business into the mix.

Sarah with her beautiful boys.

The business is a crafty one ;-) and goes by the name 'Crafty Mummy K.' I know you all love a craft or two. As do I. I have to you see. I'm not great when it comes to crafts. I need someone like Sarah to do it for me.
So, let's here about this wonderful venture that Sarah runs.

"I used to work in academia, teaching, running seminars, publishing papers and attending conferences. After the birth of my first son in 2010, I realised that I couldn't be that person any more and that he came first. I threw everything into being the best mum I could possibly be. I used amber anklets for him and found they really helped with his seemingly endless teething issues! I also had a Sophie the giraffe for him which he loved but it kept being dropped, any Sophie fans out there will know they aren't cheap to replace! I even tried sterilising one once, she lost her squeak so still ended up replacing. My son was also a big dummy fan (love them or hate them, they were a necessity here for a colicky baby!) and I kept losing those too (luckily my history of losing things didn't spread to him - at nearly 3 he is still very much by my side!)."
I recently lost Montgomery's Sophie Giraffe at our local market and believe me it did not go down too well. She was his most loved little treasure. I had to purchase him a new one and Sarah is right. They really are not cheap. So, guess what I did? I contacted 'Craft Mummy K' and got my little man a harness for his little giraffe. We now keep her close, in pram and within in my eye sight. I only have Sarah to thank for this as her Sophie the Giraffe harness is fabulous.

Can you see the harness?

Like many Mommies the 'Back to work' butterflies had begun for Sarah:

"I was due to return to work in September 2011 and when I made the big decision to become a full-time mum, these little annoyances seemed to become something I could actually do something about in my spare time. I started looking into making my own dummy clips to start with, then decided the same concept could be used to protect Sophie and so came up with a fun way to hold her and then expanded into more general toy savers. This was all done for me to start with and a couple friends. I was pregnant with son number two by this point so found it a very relaxing pastime and gradually started building up quite a lot of stock.
I also decided (probably hormone related!) that I would love to learn how to make jewellery too so that was the next thing I taught myself. Darling husband supported my crazy ideas both emotionally and financially. Eventually I learnt enough to be able to make a safe amber anklet for my son who has been wearing it ever since."
Montgomery has recently started dealing with the troubles of teething. We are yet to actually produce any teeth. But, I think the settling in has started. Pretty horrible for him and not great for me. As, I feel a little helpless with being able to help him. However, I have popped my order in with 'Crafty Mummy K' for an amber anklet and crossing my fingers that it does the trick. I am sure it will.

Beautiful 'Crafty Mummy K' jewellery.

"Son number two was born in July 2012 so the crafty side of me was put on the back burner for a bit while I settled into life as a mum of a newborn as well as a toddler. When I started finding more time again, I decided it was time I started actually doing this properly so Crafty Mummy K was born 01/01/2013. Just a mum that started doing things for her own children trying to make a few quid! I love my job now, for the first time in years, I love what I do and wish I had more hours in the day and endless buckets of cash for crafty things! I love the Breastfeeding/teething necklaces I make, my youngest loved to play with it when younger, now at 11 months he pulls it off and has a good chew. I also really like being able to create something special/personal for someone and have recently started making silver hand/foot/finger prints to add to jewellery and I am loving the results."
How wonderful! Sarah is a very talented Mommy with a really wonderful business. You really should take a little time out of your day to show her some support and visit her online. 

Sarah's website: www.craftymummyk.com

Sarah Facebook Page is: www.facebook.com/craftymummyk This facebook page is updated regularly. Please hop on over to this page and give her a like.

Little handprints on silver jewellery.

'Crafty Mummy K' is currently running a raffle to win a personalised silver charm, tickets are £1 with 50p going to Tommy's baby charity  that finds research into miscarriage, stillbirth and premature birth. Sarah has made a couple items of jewellery for customers that have lost a baby as well as losing one herself. So, it's close to her heart.
If you would like to support Sarah in this raffle. Please hop on over to her Facebook page and purchase a ticket. Every penny and every pound helps.

One last word from Sarah regarding her business 'Crafty Mummy K.'

"In my three years of being a parent, the one thing I have really learnt is to be yourself, don't worry about what others are doing, whether they are crawling yet, speaking yet, whether they are breastfed, when they walk, how and when you chose to wean etc. In the grand scheme of things, when they are all 30, you won't notice any difference and if you are obsessing about these things, you are missing out on such a wonderful time getting to know your little one and experiencing the joy that can be found in everything they do. Each child is different and YOU are the person that knows them best, never doubt yourself and always enjoy every single second because it goes so fast. Also, have something to remember this time, a silver charm with their handprint on, pictures they do, photos etc. In years to come you will look back and smile even if you have to block some of the more spectacular tantrums out of your mind."

Sarah it has been a pleasure getting to know you and introducing you and your wonderful business to my readers. I'm sure, like me they will go away and have a mooch through your beautiful products and enjoy them as much as I and other buyers do. Here at 'Moms the Word' we wish you all the best with 'Crafty Mummy K'  and would like to say thank you for taking the time to have a little chat with us.


'Moms the Word' hosts the feature 'Mompreneur Mondays' every Monday and loves to encourage support for other working Mommies out there. If yourself or a Mommy you know, runs their own business and you would like to talk about it. Please do get in touch and email me at: jessica-veltman@hotmail.co.uk. Many thanks.

Friday, 5 July 2013

Water Babies continues ...

You may be aware that my little man is practically a fish when he hits the water thanks to Water Babies. However, you may not. Therefor, the sentence prior will make no sense to you what so ever and will just make me out to be a mother that's crazed. If that is the case, please see a previous post of mine:

Water Babies
http://momstheword2012.blogspot.co.uk/2013/02/water-babies.html

So, you now know that swimming is a real passion of mine and is very important to me where Montgomery is concerned. This is where Water Babies comes in and I feel I have a lot to thank them for. Thanks to them my 6 month old now understand that he needs to hold onto the edge of the pool to remain safe in the water, he now understands that he doesn't have to be afraid of water, he kicks his legs and he swims under water. What?!? You don't believe me? Really? ... Look for yourself:


Now, I don't want to show off or sound like I am boasting. But, this was a few months ago. so, you should see my little chappy go now. He is swimming through hoops and all sorts. How wonderful is that? And, there isn't even the slightest sign of a splutter.

To Montgomery, Karl and I Water Babies really is something special and enables not only Montgomery to have oodles of confidence in the water but us to too. Especially when swimming on our own with him. I now go to my local baths and underwater swim with him in public confidently. I do get some funny looks. But, mainly people are really positive about what they see and are amazed with how natural Montgomery is in the water.

Loving the water.

Every week we learn something new and tone the lessons learnt prior. Every week Water Babies helps my little man with his swimming journey. We are now into our second term and are loving every second. I am incredibly proud of my son and love to see him in the water. It's a real butterfly in the stomach moment when I see him splashing about with no fear enjoying the swim. We will continue to attend Water Babies for as long as we see fit. To be honest, I can't see us ever wanting to stop. Not only is it a wonderful experience for Montgomery but it is a great half hour spent as a family. 

A very tiny Montgomery enjoying his swim.

Want to know more about Water Babies? check out their website:


Their Twitter:

Their Facebook:



Thursday, 4 July 2013

You Are Wearing What? ...

Yes, that's right I'm wearing my baby! And, what?

Somone described this shot as 'Montgomery in a magical forest.'
 
With modern day family living being the way it is. Time is limited, everything's all go and there's never enough hours in the day. This means, I believe 'baby-wearing' is more popular than it has ever been. When I say popular I think I actually mean more spoken about. If you look for a baby-wearer you will see one. However, if you never give it a thought you probably will never bump into one. Does that make sense? I hope so. It's a bit of a difficult concept to get your head around. Haha. You know what, I think it depends on where you live. In my home town of Wolverhampton you don't see many baby-wearers. But, the ones you do see are extremely passionate about it. As am I.

 5 weeks old and loving being close.

I never baby-wore Montgomery around the home when he was newborn and constantly feeding as I was lucky enough to have a Christmas baby with a Daddy that teaches. Therefor, we were lucky to have a full 4 weeks together. Which meant a full 4 weeks of support for me from him. However, had we not been a lucky family that time of year I would have definitely worn Montgomery to help me get through those mammoth 3-4 hour feeds whilst letting the dogs out, whilst wrapping presents, whilst decorating the tree ,whilst running the hoover round. However, I do remember my husband and I taking our dogs out for a wander with Montgomery in my front-carrier. We had only been walking a few minutes when hunger struck Montgomery hard and PANIC hit me even harder. What was I going to do? I was in the middle of a forest, dogs running around like crazed animals, fellow dog walkers waving and a baby balling his eyes out. Simple. After taking a breath I adjusted Montgomery into a position that he could safely latch onto my breast and feed away. How wonderful is that? No one could see anything and Montgomery was happy. Win win!

 Montgomery used to sleep for ages as soon as he was popped in his carrier.

 A sleeping little Montgomery moose.

As you can see, when Montgomery was a teeny-tiny wee laddy I always carried him on my front. He always seemed to like it there, looked comfy and felt right. Also, as he was a winter baby I could wrap my coat nice and tight around him to keep him super snuggly and warm. 

Nice and close.

However, more recently at the age of 6 months Montgomery has decided that being carried on the front is boring and pointless. He has decided that he can't see enough on the world and his mommies face just is not enough. So, we have moved on and progressed to the 'back carry.' And, you know what? He absolutely  loves it. He can ride on my back for hours with no sign of a moan, jibb or niggle. Also, it suits me far better as I was finding front-carrying him a little difficult now especially as his pounds are piling on. He is like a little rucksack with a wonderful smile.

Do I have a bald spot? (Don't answer that!)

As my baby-wearing journey went on. so, did my research into it and I have got to be honest. I am guilty of a bit of a sin. I did not realise that carrying my son on my front facing outwards was a bad thing. I took what it said on the box literally. It stated that my carrier was a 2 position carrier - Facing in and facing out. So, that's what I did. I carried my boy facing out because I was told I could. But, like I said my research provided me with reasons NOT to carry him on my front facing out. I have found out the following:
  • It does not support your baby's legs.
  • Makes it tough for the carrier.
  • Places your baby in an arched or hollow back position which places pressure on the spine.
  • Places undue pressure on the groin.
You can grab some more facts regarding this style of carrying  here:
http://www.bobafamily.com/blog/2011/10/11/nine-reasons-not-to-carry-your-baby-facing-out/

A trip to the zoo being carried facing forward.

Please note and understand that it is not WRONG to carry your baby like I am above. It is just advised. At the end of the day the box/manual/instructions states that you can. So, what you choose to do is completely that - Your choice. I am not here to tell you what is right or wrong. I'm just here to reveal my story and in my tale I have chosen upon advice to not carry facing forward.

Did you know that there are hundreds of carriers and wraps out there that can be worn in hundreds different ways for children of all ages, shapes and sizes? No? Neither did I until I got looking and talking to others. To be honest, I didn't really know how many people talk about baby-wearing and love the idea of it. I've gained most of my baby-wearing knowledge through talking to others and hearing their stories. Most of those were heard here:

Sling and Things - FSOT and Advice
"A place on facebook where we can sell and trade our slings and share hints and tips for getting the most out of our slings!"
I also found this facebook group for baby-wearers local to me:

Black Country Babywearers
 https://www.facebook.com/groups/blackcountrybabywearers/
"For all the local babywearing mamas to share tips and support."
They are really wonderful sites and there seems to be groups for different regions throughout the UK, you have just got to find them. :-)

 Please excuse my flat hat hair.

So, there you have it. I love to carry Montgomery on my back like a little chimpanzee and Montgomery loves to be carried on my back like a little chimpanzee. The pair of us can now enjoy walking the puppies together without the hassle of a pram and I can enjoy keeping my little man close :-) It may look a little odd to those that don't understand it. But, seriously don't knock it till you have tried it. It is a wonderful experience.


I have good news for you all regarding baby-wearing - Soon very SOON I will be talking to a handful of baby-wearers and hearing their stories. Not 2 baby-wearers are the same and hopefully the up and coming post will show that. Stay tuned folks! :-D


Tuesday, 2 July 2013

Breast and tandem feeding ...

Exciting stuff has been happening at 'Moms the Word' HQ over the last few days.We have been talking all things BREAST. Yes, that's right. I said it - BREAST! I, like many other moms out there breastfeed my little boy and it works just fine for us. He is thriving off Moma's milk and cannot get enough. For us, my son and I breast is most definitely best.
Please understand I am simply stating here what works for Montgomery and I. I am not stating that a breastfed baby is a best-fed baby. I understand that a formula fed baby is also a happy baby. However, this does not change my love of feeding my son myself and offering support to other moms out there.

On the subject of support - I have met a girl online that is an inspiration to all new breastfeeding moms out there. She has very kindly agreed to share her feeding-story with me and us. Read on mommies to see what a wonderful woman she is.



This is Danielle Sykes from Australia with her beautiful young family (How fabulous is this photograph). She is mommy to Van, 18 months and Lux, 6 months and as you can see, is an extremely proud breast-feeder. And SO YOU SHOULD BE!

The lovely Lux looking scrumptious. 

Danielle fed Van the whole way through her pregnancy with Lux and is now tandem-feeding both of them and loving it. The idea of tandem-feeding to me, is amazing. For some, the prospect is a little daunting. I guess it's down to not seeing or hearing about it much. Danielle is a prime example of - It works! It's not weird! Infact, she describes the experience of tandem-feeding to be delightful. How wonderful to continue feeding when pregnant - That's what I say. Danielle describes the first trimester with Lux feeding Van was a little uncomfortable as her nipples were quite tender. However, that was short lived. In the late third trimester her milk changed to colostrum. This resulted in Van going off milk. Danielle continued to keep offering him the breast and within a week he was back on it like a car bonnet. ;-)

"Breastfeeding them both has been lovely. It is a Saviour when they are both grumpy and it is just so lovely to watch them both interacting with each other while they nurse. They smile at each other, giggle, stroke each others faces and hold hands."

When asked how Danielle goes about weaning her littlies from the breast she answered:
 "I have no plans at this stage to wean either baby. As with all of my parenting, breastfeeding is child led. I feed on demand and have never refused a feed. I want to allow my babies to wean in their own time, when they are ready."
 I know many people worry about weaning because there are so many opinions out there along with far too many unkind people willing to share them with you. Danielle told me a woman once told her "If they can ask for it then they are too old." How bad is that? Personally, I am all for the saying 'If you have nothing nice to say then say ... nothing!' Neither myself nor Danni are asking you to like or agree with it. But, you really don't have to be vocal. At the end of the day breastfeeding is protected. So, it does not matter what you say, we do not have to stop and will not stop. You can always look away.
Breasts are there to feed babies not just for sexual gratification. If you must sexulise them then please read this. In sex some use their mouths don't they? Yet, no one is ever asked to cover their mouths when eating are they? Same applies to our hands. We use our hands in sex and are not told to cover them when offering our child food with them. I'm just saying ...

On the subject of negative vibes surrounding breastfeeding check this out:
"An older woman approached me in a food court and directed me to the 'Parents room.' She said it was making her husband feel uncomfortable. I told her I wouldn't be moving to feed my children where people defecate."

Nice facial expression there Danni.

So, yes. People can be cruel and folks can be most unkind. But, let's be honest are these people worth our time or worry? No, they are not. At the end of the day, our babies need feeding and when a baby is hungry a baby is hungry. End of. However, for every horrid word there is always a dozen positives. 
"I receive positive comments all the time, usually on the fact that I am tandem-feeding. alot of women assume that when they fall pregnant they need to wean."

I don't know about you. But, i seriously think that Danielle is an inspiration for all new, young moms out there. I remember the first time I breastfed Montgomery in public. I sat there praying he would not wake. Hoping I wouldn't have to get the bad boys out. But, he did and I had to. I fumbled with covering him whilst he squealed like a piglett. I poked him in the eyes, elbowed him in the face, got my fingers caught in my bra strap and quite honestly got my self into one heck of a tiz and for what? So, that the man drinking his coffee next to me doesn't get an eyeful? That's exactly what it was. I was far to worried about other people and not focusing on my son. It didn't take me long to grow in breast-feeding confidence and feel proud to feed my baby. At the end of the day, that is exactly what I am - Proud! I'm not the only one:
"Forget about what everyone else is thinking and focus on your baby and their needs. It is your right to breastfeed your baby anywhere, anytime."

I'd like to say a huge thank you to Danielle and her beautiful babies. I'd also like to say a huge 'BE PROUD' to all other breast-feeding moms out there. I hope you have enjoyed reading this post and getting to know Danielle. Why not continue to follow her journey through motherhood by following her on twitter - @dannidont
  
If you need any support regarding breastfeeding, these sites should help you:






Monday, 1 July 2013

Now on Twitter ...

Good news for all you tweeters out there. 'Moms the word' is now on Twitter and feeling tweet-happy! :-D

Please follow folks :- @momstheword2012

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