Olivia Wilde and Boobs

August 21, 2014

olivia-wildeYep. I have waited a decent amount of time for the rage to settle so I can write this and sound open minded and accepting of all opinions etc, but it is time to talk about Olivia Wilde and breastfeeding.

Breastfeeding is highly encouraged during pregnancy, you are bombarded with images of mothers in clean clothes feeding their sweet new cherubs, you are told that breast is best and in turn this equates to formula = failure. There are never images showing a first time mum with blocked milk ducts and a topknot, unless you’re reading a mastitis leaflet!

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Is this the ugly reality of breastfeeding? No, not always. I did not enjoy breastfeeding, it was painful, my baby was a relentless feeder and it all went on for far too long because I was told it was best for the baby etc. However I have pals who loved breastfeeding, could do it without creating a milk stain and make me a tea at the same time, but breastfeed in public…no way! I understood/understand…I was the same. I had no breast finesse and could not feed without exposing my belly button, but it wasn’t just that – it was the looks, the judging stares and disgust on surrounding faces. This made me exclusively breastfeed at home, which was tricky with a bambino who fed every 2-3 hours. It meant for the first year of Max’s life, we were mainly at home, which was incredibly isolating and not healthy.

Actress Olivia Wilde was recently photographed for a glossy magazine and in one of the shots she is breastfeeding her 5 month old baby. The backlash has been incredibly sickening with comments like “indecent” and “its not natural”. Apparently everyone wants mothers to breastfeed, but to go and sit on a public toilet and shut ourselves in a cubicle to do so. The other side of the backlash was that Wilde’s photograph paints an unfair image of a first time mother and that it is a ‘slap in the face’ to those with topknots and milk stains.

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Am I the only one or does this read like no one is winning? You cannot please everyone, but I cannot believe that these comments and insults are a reality and or relevant in 2014. It saddens me to think that anyone who is struggling with breastfeeding in the privacy of their own home has to also struggle in public. We are encouraged to breastfeed, but to do so in the shadows like we are strange monsters from a Buffy episode. This makes no sense to me. Can’t we all just get along?

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To all the breastfeeding mamas – you will never see that judging stranger again and you’re amazing so get your tits out!

Let It Go…

August 21, 2014

331652c3171ee857df5c8403f5247eb1No, not the Frozen choon (although apologies for putting that in your noggin on repeat), but actually letting it go. It can be a thing, a feeling, a friend, a relationship, a food group, but if it is making you less than you, then simply let it go.

I am trying to practice what I preach by letting some shenanigans go, like the guilt that comes with being a mother and not being Mary Poppins. I am sure if Poppins had an iPhone 5 and an instagram account, she too would be checking it whilst also singing ‘wheels on the bus’. For she seemed like a great multi-tasker?

I have had one of those weeks where you look in, we have been in quarantine as Max has had a bad case of the common cold. We have stayed in, played, read, taken long walks etc, but we have had a lot of alone time. I’m never ‘good’ on my own. I envy those people who cat sit in cafes and enjoy their own company, but I just cannot do that. Alone time for me means contemplation and I have a tendency to be a negative Nancy so I never pick up or celebrate my ‘good bits’, but if you can’t, I can’t, then who will I ask you?

So as well as letting go of the guilt, I am trying to be a bit nicer to myself (this week) and pat myself on the back for comforting that little nugget back to good health and for making him laugh in between the tears, snot and tantrums. In the words of Dora “we did it, we did it yeah”. (Dora – is she on Pinterest yet?)

Toddler Quarantine!

August 20, 2014

Eurgh! I am currently living with Slimer from Ghostbusters aka Max with a cold. SeriouSLY, what do you do with an 18 month boy who is miserable, frustrated and generally a grump? When your little one is poorly, it knocks you for six. It is like some snot monster has swapped lives with my normally happy chap. Somehow I managed to catch some moments where he smiled this weekend and you can see a glimmer of old Max in this video.

Mum & Toddler : July Favourites!

July 30, 2014

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I know I say it every month, but my o my where is the time flying? August! August! Soon it will be Christmas!

Here is another monthly favourites and quite simply it is everything that Max and I have found to be awesome throughout the month of July. Max is now 18 months old – FYI.

Baby Einstein Videos

  • I found these great videos for FREE on YouTube and have not looked back. They are educational and fun and Max interacts with the animals and puppets etc, which is amazing. Simply type in ‘baby einstein’ into Youtube and you will have your pick of Baby Einstein topics i.e first sounds, colours, farm animals, the sea etc.

SO! Organic Houmous

  • If you have followed this blog for longer than a month or watched any of my weekly vlogs, then  you will know only too well that Houmous is Max’s favourite food. He will happily dip anything into houmous including his favourite teddy bear and even eat it with a spoon. This kid is crazy for the chickpea!

Nip & Fab Glycolic Fix Pads

  • I purchased these pads on a whim, I wanted some good acid for my face that was quick and easy, hence this tub of Glycolic soaked pads in a tub. I swipe them all over my face and neck area after cleansing.

Ladybird Sing-a-Long Rhymes Books

  • Great books to encourage singing and learning some classic nursery rhymes. Max can now tell me the sound a cow makes, a chicken makes and he can point out the tinnee tiny ladybird hidden on each page too. Brilliant books to read with your toddler.

Deliciously Ella iPhone App

  • Obsessed! I have been a huge fan of the blog since my sister in law introduced me and have found lots of inspiration from Ella’s recipes. Ella has quite a story behind her blog and it has convinced me to eat more raw foods where possible and live a more plant based diet. My salads have never been so interesting. The iPhone app is perfect for me as I like to instagram everything whilst I cook (haha).

Melissa & Doug Pound-a-Peg

  • Max has owned this activity toy for a long time and he occasionally used to figure it out, but now he full on immerses himself in it and turns the toy over and over etc. It was amazing witnessing him figure it all out. This toy also buys me a crucial 7 minute coffee window!

Goodies Cheese & Herb Puffs

  • Great snack which is nasty free, but fun enough to occupy little ones. Max thinks he is getting a treat, I know he is not getting full of sugar or salt. Capishe?

Tweezerman Tweezers, Neon Pink

  • Woah! Where do I start? Basically I have been ‘slumming’ it with my tweezers of say 15 years. Max found said tweezers and hid them in a place I have not yet found so I had to buy myself some new tweezers. Long and boring story, but my life and eyebrows have never known such precision and accuracy. Wow.

Coconut Oil

  • I have joined a cult, a coconut oil instead of olive oil cult. I love that it is full of healthy benefits that include hair care, skin care, stress relief, weight control, good digestion….need I go on? If you want to read about the full benefits of using coconut oil then simply click the link above. Best of all you can practically use it in every dish including dessert and it fills the house with the smell of holidays.

Bathroom Essentials

July 30, 2014

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If I am not with Max then I am either fast asleep in snoozeville or I am in the bathroom (not like that), where I like to relax in the tub or simply cleanse the day away. My bathroom is my own very personal oasis where I can unwind and get ready for bed or I can get energised and get ready to tackle the day.

I am the nosiest parker in town and watch endless YouTube videos on strangers beauty collections and personal skin care regimes and I thought that for the nosey in you – you might enjoy a post about what I keep in my bathroom cupboards. My bathroom essentials are pretty minimal compared to friends and family, with Max’s rubber ducks, fish and ‘other’ bath toys I find I have a lot less space for such bathroom luxury so here are my favourite lotions and potions…

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Tresemme Luxury Moisture Shampoo

Tresemme 24 Hr Body Conditioner

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Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser (Face)

Imperial Leather Foamburst (Body)

Gilette Disposable Razor

1 x Rubber Duckie!IMG_7307 Oral B Electric Toothbrush (Pink to make the boys wink)

Listerine Teeth & Gum Mouthwash

Oral B Brilliance ToothpasteIMG_7313Tweezerman Tweezers

Tangle Teezer

So there you have it…everything that makes my day easier in the morning and a little more clean! What’s in your bathroom cupboards? Did you like this post or simply loathe it? Please leave me comment below x

Max’s 18 Month Update!

July 29, 2014

IMG_6896I wrote and updated y’all on all of Max’s milestones and schedules for the first year of his life, here on The Milk Stand and now Max has just turned 18 months! I thought you might be interested in an updated update. So here is Max’s official 18 month de-brief. Ha.

Routine

Max wakes up around 7am with some serious squeaks and chatter (talking to his teddy bears) and we scoop him up and break the fast. We always try and sit down to have breakfast together and Max will often watch Peppa Pig whilst he munches and we have our first coffee. Then we play and have a read. Max will then go for a 2 hour nap around 10/10.30am. This is his only nap. This is my time – to blog, vlog, wash and do all my chores. When Max wakes up we have lunch together and get ready to start our day. I always try to have a play date or an activity planned, but if I don’t I will always just go to our local park and take a picnic, a football and a colouring book with me. Max will often have a little ‘downtime’ around 4pm which means either reading or nursery rhyme time or if it has been a hard day – TV! Max has his dinner at 5pm, followed by some milk and play time and once the clock hits 6.30pm we head upstairs and run a bath, read and start to relax for bedtime. Once Max is out of the bath he finishes his milk and has a little story time with dad and then we simply put him in his cot and he puts himself to sleep for 7pm.

Sleeping

Max sleeps through the night these days and has not woken up in the night for almost 6 months now! Woah. As I previously said he only takes one nap a day and it can last from 2-3 hours, which is currently bliss as I can get so much done and I even have time for a second coffee in the garden at the moment. I am so happy now I get to sleep.

Eating

Max is eating lots of new and different things all the time, but he is picky about what he chooses to put in his mouth and sometimes it can be hard to convince him to try certain foods, which is frustrating at times. He is obsessed with hummus and crusty bread! (So middle class/Brighton).

Clothing Size

Max is now wearing 18-24 month clothing. It is mad – trousers are so long and he looks like a ‘real boy’ in almost all of his outfits. Long gone are the onesies and rompers.

Milestones

Max is walking, talking over 20 words, understanding so much more, he is sweet and kind with the dog, he dances his little butt off to Beyonce and can point out birds, ladybirds, cows etc in books. He runs everywhere, he watched an hour long movie (Jungle Book) the other day (actually sat for the whole period of time), he can feed himself with cutlery, blow you a kiss, say bye and ‘Hiya’ and put himself to sleep. All of this is amazing, but his personality is starting to shine through too now and Max is an official cheeky monkey who is more curious than a cat. He loves tools, sticks and diggers and he is turning into such a cool dude.

Post Partum

Everything is ‘back to normal’ or as normal as it could be after having a baby and now the whole house is sleeping we are a lot happier. We look and feel great and can have a conversation again. Woop, woop. Even though the first year is behind me, the second is bringing its own set of issues with it. We now have tantrums and tears, which can be so, so, so trying at times, especially when they happen in a public place, but I am learning as I go. I have heard that the ‘terrible two’s’ come early for boys and looking back at all of Max’s first year updates I am inclined to agree. Work in progress. Stay tuned for more tantrum blogs!

If you have any questions about 18 months or how I got here etc, then please do not hesitate and leave me a comment below or send me an email, tweet me, Facebook, Instagram and all that jazz. I will try to answer with knowledge and experience…yeah right.

Thank you,

NB x