Ready for the birth

Preparing for the Birth

As the days tick down and the midwife appointments become more frequent, the big due date draws closer. It’s almost time to meet your baby!

Naturally, it’s a really exciting time, but inevitably worry, anxiety and panic can also set in. 

Read on for some tips on how to feel ready for birth and confident for the start of your parenting journey.

Pack your bags 

Having your hospital bag ready and prepped for whenever your baby decides it’s time will immediately calm your nerves. 

Spend some time going through your lists of what to pack in a hospital bag. Make sure you’ve got everything ticked off for both you and baby, and tell your birth partner where it is kept. Remember you don’t need the kitchen sink. Space can be limited, so just take what you think you will need.  Your partner can always collect things for you while you are in hospital.

Keep any hospital notes or letters with your hospital bag so that nothing gets forgotten.

Book into antenatal classes

Many people attend classes with National Childbirth Trust (NCT), but these are not your only option. 

Ask your midwife, health visitor or GP about NHS classes locally. 

These will inform you of what to expect in birth and the first few weeks, but also a great way to meet other parents who are expecting babies at the same time. 

Do your research

Pregnancy and birth are such personal experiences. No two bodies, births or babies are the same. 

It’s handy to do some digging into what options you have available to you when the time comes. It will make you feel more comfortable about making decisions if you have more information.

You might want to consider:

  • Where you might have the baby; labour ward, midwife-led unit or home birth. 
  • What pain relief options are available and how you feel about them.
  • A visit to the birth facilities.
  • The availability of birthing pools if you’d like a water birth.
  • Hypnobirthing and how it can help with labour.

Consider your birth plan

Birth can’t be planned for as it’s down to nature as to how it will play out. That said, it can be useful to write a birth plan to communicate your wishes or concerns to the staff working during your labour. 

Keep it flexible, as birth can always change, but perhaps make a note of what you wouldn’t want to happen. 

Try not to be too disappointed if the experience isn’t what you expected though. Unfortunately, these babies don’t always play by the rules!

Expect delays

As well as doing their own thing, babies also work on their own timescales. 

Unless your labour is super speedy, expect it to be a long process. If you’re induced, waiting for a c-section, asking for an epidural, there might be delays depending on staff availability. 

Women ahead of you will be prioritised, so if their babies are coming faster, you might have to wait. 

Try not to dwell on how long it is taking, and rather make the most of your last few hours. Look forward to meeting your baby, pack a book, download a boxset or try to sleep as much as you can. It could be a long few days.

Feel however you feel

There is no right or wrong way to feel after having a baby. 

You might be exhausted or full of energy. You might be delighted or a little overwhelmed. You might be looking forward to lots of visitors, or want to be left in your own little bubble. 

However you feel, just know that it’s 100% up to you. Accept your feelings and go with your instincts. Just be you.  If you are concerned about anything or worried about low mood, seek medical advice from your health visitor, midwife or GP. 

Batch cook meals

Once you and your baby arrive home, you may feel like you don’t have time to prepare food. You’ll want it to be ready when you’re feeling hungry. It’s also important to eat properly when breastfeeding and just generally to keep energy levels up.

Fill the freezer with plenty of nutritious pre-cooked and portioned meals that you can simply heat up. Ask friends and family to do the same too, to keep you stocked up. 

There is lots more you can do to prepare for the birth, but the key is to not put any pressure on yourself.  Women have been having babies for years and you just have to let your body do the work, and look forward to meeting your precious bundle very soon!

Feel free to check out our Pregnancy Advice Section for some more helpful tips!

Third Trimester

What to expect in the Third Trimester of Pregnancy

At week 28 of pregnancy, you officially enter the third trimester. The end is in sight!

The third trimester is an exciting time for a lot of expectant parents. It’s usually the stage where maternity leave edges closer, more items get ticked off the ‘to-do’ list, and arrangements for the birth are made.

But what actually happens in the latter stages of pregnancy? Here are a few home truths about how you might be feeling and what is happening to your body during the last few months of your pregnancy.

You might not be glowing and full of happiness

Some lucky women are just that; glowy skin, luscious hair and a glamorous bump. 

We think it’s fairly safe to say, however, that this is certainly not always the case.

During the later stages of pregnancy, mum-to-be is contending with her growing baby bump and everything that it brings. 

The following are a few conditions that heavily pregnant women might experience:

Heartburn and indigestion. This can be caused by the growing baby and hormones affecting the digestive system.

Exhaustion. Not only is mum-to-be carrying the extra weight, but she is probably uncomfortable at night and therefore getting less sleep. 

Back, pelvic and hip aches. The increasing baby weight puts pressure on the lower back area, and also joints and ligaments will also be looser than usual due to hormonal changes. 

Swelling. Ankles, feet, fingers and even the face are prone to puffiness due to water retention but also pre-eclampsia in some cases. Always get this checked if you feel concerned, as it can be dangerous to mum and baby.

Hormones. The highs and lows of pregnancy can lead to unusual mood swings. Don’t be surprised if you are happy one minute and in floods of tears the next. Always share this information with a midwife though, as postnatal depression and other conditions can begin to present as early as pregnancy.  

Try to slow down

If one thing is guaranteed to wind you up, it’s when people tell you to ‘enjoy your sleep whilst you can’. 

The truth is that when you feel like you’re carrying a watermelon around, ache all over, and the baby wants to have a party at 3am, you might not be sleeping at all! Let alone getting more sleep.

That said, listen to your body and if you are tired, try to slow down. 

The washing can wait (or someone else can do it). Ask your partner to make dinner for you. Enjoy a long bath on your own. Whatever it is, your body is doing something superhuman and using every little bit of energy that you have, so reward yourself with some guilt-free rest.

You might still feel nauseous

Sadly, morning sickness doesn’t always disappear at 12 weeks. 

Whilst more common in the first trimester, morning sickness can strike at any point in pregnancy. 

Nausea usually improves or stops by around weeks 16 to 20, but it can last longer. In fact, excessive nausea and vomiting are known as hyperemesis gravidarum (HG), which can require hospital treatment although this is quite rare.

Find out more about hyperemesis gravidarum on the NHS website.

You will want to get organised

Most parents-to-be want to be organised for when the baby arrives. 

Whether it’s buying baby clothes, choosing the pushchair, or kitting the nursery out, preparing for baby can help with feeling more ready, both emotionally and practically.

Rather than leaving it all until the last minute, the key to not feeling overwhelmed towards the end is to chip away at the list over time. 

Check out our Pushchair and Pram Advice Section, where you can find the best pram for you! 

You are more likely to worry

Pregnancy can throw up all sorts of worries, but also bring on greater anxiety. 

Concerns about birth, caring for the baby, health, becoming a parent, stress, and money worries can all exacerbate nerves and add to the worry. 

This is all completely normal and the best thing to do is talk it through with someone who can help. 

After all, it is said that ‘a problem shared is a problem halved’. 

Women in third trimester
baby christmas

How to make baby’s first Christmas special

If you have had a new arrival this year, you might be looking for some ideas as to how to make a baby’s first Christmas special. Or perhaps you missed out last year and want to make up for lost time by making some new family memories and Christmas traditions.

Christmas is a really busy time, but it is an obvious time to mark milestone moments. First Christmas jumper, first Christmas Eve or first trip to see twinkly lights. 

Parents always feel a lot of pressure to make all of those ‘firsts’ that little bit extra special at Christmas, but the sky can be the limit. There are so many ways to make a baby’s first Christmas memorable, so we’ve done the leg work for you. 

Here is our guide to the best ways to make a baby’s first Christmas special, memorable, but also practical.

Making festive family memories

Make or buy a decoration. Look in shops for ‘baby’s first Christmas’ baubles with the year printed on, that you can bring out year after year. Alternatively, make your own DIY Christmas ornament, or look locally for ceramics specialists who can use your child’s hands or footprints to make a bespoke decoration. 

A Christmas jumper photo. Take a snap of your little baby in a cute Christmas jumper or outfit. Choose something unisex so that you can look to use it for younger siblings or pass it on to friends to extend the life of the item. 

Family pyjamas. Buy or make family PJs for an epic photo. Take one each year so that you can document how everyone is changing year after year.

A ‘showstopper’ annual gift. Choose a gift that you bring out each year, such as a snow globe or musical scene. Talk to your child every Christmas about when you bought it, why it is special, where you got it from, how they reacted to it each time. 

Visit Santa. Go for that photo! For little ones, watch how they marvel at the sensorial experience of the twinkly lights and sounds created in grottos. 

Stockings for everyone. Choose a stocking for everyone that you can use every year as part of your traditions. If you’re on a budget, buy a plain one and add your own personal touches to personalise it for each family member.

Start a tradition. Use the milestone of baby’s first Christmas to start a completely new tradition. Perhaps a winter walk on Christmas Eve, a visit to the same place each year, lunch with new parent friends, or a carol concert. Whatever it is, start it on the first year and make sure it’s in your calendar for years to come. 

baby xmas

Free Christmas traditions

Handprint cards. It’s really easy and inexpensive to make super cute cards or pictures with baby’s teeny handprints. Create a keepsake that you can share with others, but also which takes pride of place on your mantelpiece each Christmas. Check out handprints cards ideas on Pinterest.

Read classic Christmas stories. It’s never too early to start reading to your baby. Head to the library or look online for classic tales of Christmas Eve.  Look for ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas’, ‘A Christmas Carol’ and ‘The Elves and the Shoemaker’ to get started.

Bake together. It might be too soon for the baby to indulge in treats, but if they have moved onto solids, bake some healthy alternatives to Christmas cookies or gingerbread. If they are able to, let them feel the squidgy mixture or explore sprinkles to decorate them.

Watch Christmas films together. This one is more for the parents, but simply enjoy a Christmas film on the sofa and embrace the extra cuddles. 

Take a photo in the same place. Take a photo of your baby in a place that you intend to visit each year to show how they grow. For example, by your tree, fireplace or somewhere outdoors. 

Teach the true meaning of Christmas

Donate to a food bank or charity. Start to instil the true meaning of Christmas from year one by donating to a local food bank or charity in your community. Do this on behalf of your baby and as they grow involve them in the process by making them aware of when you started and why you do it.

Have a clear-out. Declutter old toys or clothes that baby has grown out of and donate them to a charity shop or local cause. Make this an annual tradition that they can participate in when they are older.

Visit a carol concert or church service. Look in your local community for church services or carol concerts to teach the story of Christmas. These events are usually very welcoming even if you don’t know anyone, and who knows, you may make some new friends too. With our new compact Aster V2 stroller, it can be folded by the touch of a button and stored away at any church service or concert.

Get together. Family members and friends will probably place demands on time with your little bundle. Christmas is about getting together with people who are special, so devise a schedule of who you want to see, making it manageable and appreciating everybody’s needs.

Take some time out. Remember, that Christmas is a time for fun, making memories and sharing. It is also a time to stop and relax too. When you have a new baby, you’re likely to be exhausted, whether the baby is 11 hours, 11 days or 11 months old. Make sure that you exercise the right to say ‘no’ so that you can enjoy some cuddles, playtime, or a night off without guilt creeping in. 

Happy Christmas from everyone at didofy!

Breastfeeding Advice

Help for mums this Breastfeeding Week

Breastfeeding Advice

Help for mums this Breastfeeding Week

World Breastfeeding Week runs this year from August 1st – 7th; an annual event organised by the World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action (WABA) with the aim of highlighting the benefits of breastfeeding for the health and welfare of babies around the world.

The ‘breast is best’ debate has raged for many years and will probably continue to do so but many new mums – including here in the UK – are simply not offered the right support to be able to start or continue breastfeeding, giving rise to the modified ‘fed is best’ motto.

How many people breastfeed in the UK?

According to The Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, less than a quarter (17%) of babies are still being exclusively breastfed for 3 months. In fact, the UK has some of the lowest breastfeeding rates in the world, with eight out of ten women stopping breastfeeding before they want to. Breastfeeding is not only good for babies, it can also help mums, by lowering their risk of breast cancer, ovarian cancer, osteoporosis, cardiovascular disease – even obesity. It’s also thought that increasing the number of babies who are breastfed could cut common childhood illnesses including ear, chest and gastrointestinal infections, saving the NHS up to £50 million each year.

Breastfeeding can be a wonderfully bonding experience and there’s no doubt that breast milk has a myriad of benefits to baby. It’s a skill and requires patience (not always easy with a hungry newborn) but once mastered (often with support) it can free up precious time – no need for sterilising bottles or mixing formula – it’s a nutritious ready meal ‘on the go’!

Breastfeeding top tips for getting started:

  •   Take your time: find somewhere quiet, turn off your phone, have a glass of water and a muslin to hand, try to relax and stay calm.
  •   Get comfy: whether feeding in bed or on the sofa,grab a feeding support pillow, enabling you to easily find the correct positioning for helping baby to latch on.
  •   Switch sides: it’s important to feed from both sides equally to stimulate milk production, so remember to alternate the breast you offer the baby first.
  •   Stay nourished: breastfeeding burns calories and can make you hungry and thirsty, so while the baby enjoys your nutritious breast milk, it’s just as important that mum eats a healthy diet too.
  •   Ask for help: breastfeeding shouldn’t be painful or stressful for either mum or baby – so if you’re experiencing difficulties, it’s important to ask for help from a medical expert.

At Didofy, we support and celebrate all parents.  We admire breastfeeding, bottlefeeding and combination feeding mums – all mums do an amazing job!  Whatever way you choose to feed, you are all doing an amazing job.  We salute you!

 

car seat baby safety

The 101 on Car seat safety

car seat baby safety

The 101 on Car seat safety

You’ve bought the best car seat you could, so job done? Actually, no! The most crucial part of a car seat is how well it has been fitted. Even the most expensive car seat won’t protect if it is badly fitted.

So how do you make sure you’re fitting the car seat properly? The key message here is to read the instructions and, if it is available, to look at the fitting video on the supplier’s website.

The safest place to put the seat is the middle of the back seat, but often it is not possible to fit it there. The nearside is better than the offside as you are more likely to stand on the pavement when putting baby in the car. However, if you are driving alone, it may be better to put baby on the front seat where you can see him. If they make a funny sound or appear to be choking, your instincts will be to look to find out what is wrong. Taking your eyes off the road is never a good idea. Suddenly thinking about and looking at your baby could mean you cause an accident. However, never put the seat where there is an airbag – it can seriously injure a baby if it goes off.

The easiest infant car seats to fit are the latest i-Size seats. How do you know if your car is suitable for i-Size or suitable for Isofix? The information will lurk somewhere in the car’s manual. If you have both, then fitting is easy – there is a pair of anchor points hidden between the back and seat. The latches on the car seat should slide straight in. Look out for the indicator lights which show everything is correctly in place. To stop the seat rotating in an accident, there are sometimes top tether straps but more often there is a foot which braces the seat on the floor. The green button on the base usually is green if it is fitted correctly and red if not.

Things become a little more difficult if you have an older car or a seat without the ISO fix latches. Then you will need to use the seat belts. This can be fraught with difficulties and complications so fitting can be a right pain and mistakes are quite likely.

If you are fitting the seat rear facing, you will need to follow the BLUE guides. Forward facing, you need to follow the RED guides. Pull the seat belt out and pass it through the guides carefully following the instructions and click it in. Some belts aren’t long enough. If this is the case, you will need to return the seat to the retailer as it doesn’t fit your car.

Key checks:
· Make sure the seat belt isn’t twisted at all.

· Kneel in the seat pushing it firmly into the car seat and pull on the seat belt so that it is TIGHT!

· Lock-off clips or tensioners help keep the seat belt firm.

Check frequently that the seat is still firmly in place. There should be little, if any, sideways or forward movement. If the seat is a Group 0+ rear-facing seat, carefully check where the handle should be. This can vary from seat to seat, though often it is upright or fully back and it can offer extra protection if you roll the car over in an accident.

When you use the seat belt to fit the seat it is important that it is the fabric part of the seat belt that holds the seat in place. Sometimes, the plastic of the buckle is bent against the plastic of the seat. In an accident, the buckle could shatter, releasing the seat belt. Some seats have alternative routings to avoid this problem.

It’s not just the seat that needs to be fitted correctly. Your child also needs to be strapped in correctly. When the child is in the seat, pull the harness tight. You should be able to get two fingers between the collarbone and the harness, but no more. Most children prefer it to hold them firmly and if you always do it, they come to expect it anyway. Watch out in cold weather. A thick jacket or snowsuit can make the harness less effective, so remove thick clothing before strapping the child in.

Hopefully, you will never need to put the car seat to the test, but if you do have an accident, it’s good to know that everything possible has been done to protect your most precious possession. If you are still confused by car seats, you could read this free handy guide from the Baby Products Association “Car Seats – Ending the Confusion”

which pram life style

Choosing the right pram to suit your lifestyle

which pram life style

Choosing the right pram to suit your lifestyle

Choosing the right pram to suit your lifestyle

After a year of lockdown, we’re all looking forward to getting out and about again.

For some new parents, this might be the first time they properly get to use their pushchair somewhere else other than walking in circles around the local area for the 15th time that week.

For parents-to-be, who may have been delaying choosing a pushchair, it puts the decision right to the top of the list.

Whether you’re a first timer, or are replacing an older model however, choosing a pushchair never gets any easier. It is a big decision. Aside from the hefty price tag, there are so many options to choose from when buying a pram.


Navigating the pushchair market

You’ll probably have questions like, whether to go for a versatile all-terrain travel system, a compact pushchair, or stick with the traditional pram.

The truth is that the pushchair market is flooded with new options, designs, and accessories. The good news however, is that the variety exists because pushchairs and prams are typically designed for different uses.

With the easing of lockdown restrictions from 12th April, it’s now more important than ever to choose the right pushchair for your lifestyle. So we thought we would take some of the legwork out of figuring out which pushchair or pram is right for wherever you’re planning to head off to this summer.


The city pram

If you live in an urban area or are planning to take a city break, you’ll need a pushchair which is suitable for city life. It should be compact and easy to get on and off public transport.

A stroller is generally a cheaper, forward facing, lightweight option which takes up much less space. It can be used as the travel buggy, and ultimately replace the bigger pushchair as a baby or toddler grows.

Look for a reliable, safe, and highly practical ultra-compact stroller to make life easier for parents-on-the-go.


A pram for sunnier climes

For sunny days out at the beach, or picnics in the park, you will need something that offers more comfort. It’s also worth remembering that late spring does tend to bring mini heat waves too.

A pram with a carrycot will offer sun protection for newborns, but is also usually made from breathable fabrics to equally keep them cool.

For older babies and toddlers, a travel system pushchair attachment with a large hood can be used in both forward and backward directions, and can recline flat for nap times on the go.


The road trip pushchair

If you’re planning a longer trip by car, you’ll need to pack a lot more equipment.

A travel system is a versatile option which crosses the bridge between pram and pushchair. In theory a travel system can be collapsed to fit in the boot of the car, and can accommodate a carrycot, a car seat, and a pushchair seat for whenever is necessary.

The travel system offers the best of both worlds with greater versatility right up to toddlerhood.


Buggies for your country getaway

An escape to the country might be just what the doctor ordered to run wild and free for a few days.

Your pushchair will need to be suitable for a completely different terrain to manoeuvre challenges put in place by Mother Nature.

A buggy suitable for the great outdoors will need larger wheels, which lock in place, and better suspension to cope with bumps, stones and mud. Ideally choose fabrics that can be removed and washed easily, but will also offer protection from the elements.


Some points to consider when buying a pram

To make the right decision on which pushchair to choose, consider:

  • How heavy is it?
  • Is it fully collapsible?
  • Is there a one-hand fold option?
  • Are the parts fully removable?
  • Are the fabrics weatherproof (rain, wind, UVA, cooling)?
  • Can you add to it if necessary (car seat adapters, sibling seating, accessories etc.)?
  • Can it be swapped from forward to rear facing easily?
  • Can all materials be cleaned easily?
  • Can it be used in a lie-flat position?
  • Will it fit in overhead lockers or storage areas on public transport?

By considering what you want from your pushchair, and the types of uses you have in mind, you should be able to find the perfect pram to suit your needs.

eco friendly baby

Eco Friendly Baby

eco friendly baby

Eco Friendly Baby

It’s easy to feel saddened by bleak statistics of global pollution and the environmental legacy we are leaving to our children, but there are some simple baby steps we can all take to help reduce some of the damage done to the environment.

With the launch of our new Prams for Good Campaign on March 1st, we are conscious about the amount of baby products going to landfill. Read more on this campaign here

We have come up with a few top tips to help get you started on your journey to becoming a greener parent and look at the best eco baby products around:

Switch nappies

The average baby gets through 4,000 disposable nappies by the time they’re potty-trained, costing families £400 a year and taking up to 500 years to break down. By switching to reusable cloth nappies for just one child, parents could divert as much as 874kg from landfill and reduce their carbon footprint by up to 40 per cent. We love the new eco nappy range from Kit + Kin or the reusable nappies from Bambino Mio.

Ditch the plastic

Nearly every single piece of plastic we have used in our life still exists somewhere on the planet – including your toothbrush! Start by switching from plastic bottles to soap and shampoo bars, choose biodegradable bamboo cotton buds and nappy sacks – and look for plant-based baby wipes which are compostable and don’t clog up the sewers. We love Mama Designs Bamboo Wipes and Breast pads and the subscription to bamboo toothbrushes for the family from The Pearly White Club.

Play it safe

If your child’s nursery or playroom is in danger of becoming a sea of plastic, consider eco-friendly brands such as Green Toys whose non-toxic, food-safe products are made using 100% post-consumer recycled plastic including milk bottles and yoghurt pots. Or switch to wooden toys like Orange Tree Toys – they’ll last much longer and don’t require batteries!

Eco travel

Travel in style and help save the planet with eco-friendly travel products. Try a carrier from Tula or a wrap from Amawrap, both companies with eco-friendly credentials.

You are what you wear

Clothing manufacturing uses huge amounts of greenhouse gases and releases toxic chemicals into the environ­ment – not ideal for sensitive baby skin. Thankfully, there are alternatives, such as organic cotton clothes on the market. We love Baby Mori and the new clothing range from Emma Bunton’s Kit + Kin

What’s for lunch?

Making baby food from scratch is neither easy nor convenient for many parents, but with so many organic baby food brands on the market today, it’s possible to source healthy choices to suit even the youngest (and fussiest) palates. Try Organix for full flavour and a wide range of products from babies to pre-schoolers.

Refill, re-use & recycle

Mopping up after young children is a given, so start by swapping your regular household cleaning products to a greener option such as Ecover. As well as being better for the planet (and cheaper for the consumer) Ecover also has refill stations in stores across the country – look for your nearest one here.

And finally…

Make the switch
With appliances running in the background of most families, it’s important to find an energy provider that won’t cost the earth. Most now offer a ‘green’ tariff but there are also dedicated green only energy companies too, such as Bulb, Ovo and Ecotricity. Simply turning the dial down on your washing machine to 30 degrees can also reduce your monthly energy bill and help the environment.

Don’t forget to share your top eco tips with us on Instagram

grey and white baby bedroom

Grey and White Baby Nursery Room Ideas

grey and white baby bedroom

Grey and white baby bedroom

Grey and white baby nursery room ideas

For a little while now, you’d have been hard pressed to pick up an interiors magazine and not find pages of Scandinavian inspired room designs. Greys, whites and natural woods are bang on trend for home decor right now. From accessories to furniture, grey colour palettes are used as a sophisticated and cool backdrop through the whole home. Unsurprisingly, when it comes to baby’s room, a grey nursery base colour is a popular choice.

Grey nursery decor

It might seem to go against the ‘cutesy’ traditional decor themes for newborns, but a grey baby nursery is what parents are opting for in 2020. Families are turning their backs on the old-fashioned ‘pink for a girl’ and ‘blue for a boy’ idea, preferring more versatile muted tones for baby’s room. Why is that? Well, maybe because for a while now, grey Scandi design has been so hot. As the middle ground between light and dark, it’s the perfect modern neutral. Offering classy and calming contrasts to colourful tones, it creates cool yet comforting scenery for a baby’s nursery decor. Grey pretty much matches anything too. For example, a grey crib will fit into the parent’s bedroom, and can be used by either gender. In shared rooms, grey and pastel toys can seamlessly work for more than one child. A grey theme can also be adapted for a new sibling if they come along, rather than having to strip everything back and start again when tastes change. It’s all simply a case of changing the accent colour.

Grey on the road

It’s not only decor where grey is a popular choice either. Grey travel systems are the new kid on the block, adopting new fabrics and materials to offer a premium feel to parents with an eye for design. The colour is also a new favourite with parents who are moving away from the traditional black, choosing a grey car seat which typically fits in with more car interiors too. With slings and carriers, softer greys are coming through in fabrics, and can easily coordinate with a wider choice of clothing colours.

Adding a splash of colour

Grey and white nurseries may not be for everyone however.  Equally en vogue at the moment, is adding a colour pop to balance the neutral greys. Teals, blush pink, corals, yellows and mint greens as well as the new earthy tones can all stop a grey nursery from feeling flat and bland. Grey and yellow nurseries add a burst of sunshine and are particularly trendy for a gender neutral room. Yellow accessories and soft furnishings are widely available for a range of budgets, and can really lift the greys with a modern edge. Or for a new take on the traditional colours of baby rooms, blues or teals can add coolness, whereas a pink and grey nursery gives a subtle and softer feel. By adding baby blankets with coloured trims, wall art, rugs, and toys, or for the more adventurous, a feature wall, grey rooms can be transformed with a simple injection of colour.  We love the range on offer from Natural Baby Shower.

Grey Nursery Products

We have picked some of our favourite grey products for you to choose from to complement your grey nursery colour scheme: Reusable natural cotton washcloths from Amawrap which also come in a grey colour Reusable Wash Cloths (Large, Pack of 5) The Shnuggle Air Crib to Cot Combines all the key features of baby’s first bed to provide a safe, close and cosy sleep space from birth, but is uniquely designed to grow with baby; www.shnuggle.com  Rosa and Bo Nesting babies – these cute Russian Doll inspired toys are suitable from birth and look lovely in the nursery. www.rosaandbo.com Hippychick Cellular Blanket https://www.hippychick.com/products/cellularblanket Nattou Tembo Rocker – £109.95 https://www.hippychick.com/products/nattou-rocker Mama Designs Babasac cloud sleeping bag https://www.mamadesigns.co.uk/product-category/baby/ Train toy from Nordi Baby which looks great on the nursery shelf too! https://www.nordibabi.com/shop/Train-with-blocks-p238836550 The Gaia Baby Rocking Chair and Footstool
dads mental health

Dad’s Mental Health

dads mental health

Let's focus on Dad...

 

“How’s Mum?  Mum and baby well?”,  “Everything OK with Mum?”,  “New Mum? – How are things?”

It’s no secret that becoming a new mum can be a roller coaster whilst adjustments are made to life with a tiny human.  Sore nipples, leaking breasts, sleepless nights, guilt doubt, overwhelming love, happiness, anxiety, the list of emotions is endless.  However, over the years we have become far better at recognising when mums may be struggling emotionally and have a wealth of services all designed to care for maternal mental health.

But what about partners?  How often do we ask about them?  How often do we stop to consider the massive changes that have occurred in their life?  Rarely!  And, astonishingly, nowhere in our official maternity care guidelines does it mention the wellbeing of partners.

Things definitely need to change, and slowly we are becoming more aware of the need to address fathers’ and partners’ mental health and wellbeing as they adapt to parenthood.  However, until major changes are made in care provision, it is important that as expectant mums we consider, both in pregnancy and after the arrival of your newborn, that you ask how your other half is doing.

For many years women have dryly rolled their eyes and supported each other with tales of woe that their partners are unexpectedly falling short of the mark, but we forget that they are learning too and at the same time as holding down a job, worrying about finances, worrying about the new mum in the house, not to mention making copious cups of tea for every Tom, Dick and Harry that walks through the door.   Are they told they never change a nappy, only to be moved out of the way when they do it wrong? Are they beginning to feel like a third wheel as you bond with your new best friend?

Research now suggests that for every mother that is diagnosed with postnatal depression, 50% of fathers will also be suffering – with no official support!  So, for the Dads reading this here are a few boltholes where you can go for support until our services catch up:

@thedadsnet 

@markwilliamsfmh

https://www.facebook.com/andysmanclub/

Becoming parents is the most wonderful experience but as with anything that is worthwhile and reaps rewards, it is not without its challenges.  Anticipating them during pregnancy and ensuring that you keep checking in on each other in the weeks and months following the arrival of your baby will help to keep everyone that little bit happier.

The 22nd June marked International Fathers Mental Health Day #DadsMHDay

With thanks to Midwife Louise Broadbridge, founder of ‘Let’s talk birth and baby’ 
@thehonestmidwife

fathers day

Celebrating Dad’s First Father’s Day

fathers day

Celebrating Dad’s first Father’s Day

Father’s Day is on Sunday 21st June. For a new dad, it marks a really special day, and the first of many. So how can you make the first Father’s Day special for your little one’s Daddy? We have a few little ideas…

A lie in and an enormous breakfast

Think about what he likes and have it ready. Whether it’s a full English, croissants with jam or granola and yoghurt, have it ready to prepare after he’s caught up on some sleep. He’ll wake up in a better mood and feel special. Dads need pampering too and, as we all know, the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach!

A thoughtful gift

There are hundreds of options available on the internet from a personalised book about his baby, to a personalised chopping board or a monthly beer – or even sock – subscription. You know him best and know what he’d like. A carefully chosen gift shows you love him and understand what he likes. NOT ON THE HIGH STREET have some great ideas!

An original artwork or mug

In the days before Father’s Day, you could have a go at creating a bespoke piece of art or a keepsake. You can buy a kit that helps you take prints of your baby’s tiny hands and feet, or make your own. He could keep it by his bed or in the office. Or perhaps have one of your favourite photos or prints printed on a coffee mug?

Something more exciting?

If you can, you could think about making a real day of it. Its difficult at the moment to do everything you would have normally planned, but you could buy him an experience day for the future, or just plan a day to the beach, a zoo or Wildlife Park or a national park.

The gift of time

How about going down the route of giving him the gift of time? One of the things new dads often find difficult to get used to (and which mums on maternity leave sometimes overlook) is the challenge of getting up, going to work, coming home, taking the baby because mum’s been with them all day and needs a break, going to bed, getting up, going to work… You could think about making him a voucher that promises the whole afternoon is his own to go for a bike ride, lie on the sofa with a movie (the louder and more action-packed the better) or have a beer in the garden followed by a nice meal. This sort of gift will be restorative and as welcome as an expensive present.

A special card

It’s always lovely to receive a card that someone has put some thought and time into making. If your baby’s big enough, the effort they put into their early scribbles say ‘I love you’, or if not a simple card with paint footprints and handprints means more than anything you can buy in the shops. A simple card with a design by your baby in wax crayon or poster paint and a thoughtful message from you is sure to touch his heart more deeply than something you’ve picked up in the supermarket.

It’s all about team work

So however you choose to celebrate Father’s Day, remember you’re a team. Everyone has to adjust to their new role and although it can be tricky at times, as the years go on you’ll find it’s the most amazing adventure you will ever go on. And you will get enough sleep again, one day.
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