Baby bag….. Two under Two 🧒🏼👶🏼

I’ve had lots of questions recently asking about which type of baby bag I use and what I pack in it now I have two under two to think about! So here is a little peak at what I have and use, as well as what I keep inside!

I use two different baby bags depending on what we’re doing in the day and where we are going!

Bag one….. the Pacapod Croyde (in pewter)

This bag is plenty big enough for all the baby and toddler needs, comes with handy pods to help you organise bits, has a large zip at the top and around the front for super easy access, plus it has a small portable changing mat!

Bag two…….. Storksak Hero Floral.

This is a backpack style bag and again really very spacious! Exactly what I need with two to cater for. This also comes with a handy changing mat and extra matching feeding bag! I find this incredibly useful when I want to be hands free and chasing a toddler about!

In the past I’ve found using backpacks as baby bags frustrating as unlike the usual style of baby bag it’s not easy to access everything! However the Storksak have really thought carefully about the design and the Hero Floral has lots of useful pockets as well as an access point at the back of the bag down the bottom, meaning you don’t have to empty the bag to get to the items you’ve packed first.

So what do I pack in them….

Whatever bag I decide to use when I’m heading out with the boys, I try and be as organised as possible (and in advance, I like my bag to be pre packed as much as it can be). I arrange the boys nappies and bits separately and make sure I have all the spare things I might need!

The boys each have a letter bag, Harvey has had his since he was born and we recently got a similar one for Jude! I keep the boys nappies, wipes and creams in these. It makes it quick and easy, plus anyone who’s with me (and offering to help out) can easily identify who’s is who’s. Think of it like a dummy’s guide, especially for the boys dad, otherwise I’m sure I’d end up seeing Jude in one of Harvey’s nappies! 😂 I then just move them between bags as and when I need to.

I always pack spare clothing for Jude, extra baby grow, vest, scratch mittens, socks etc as well as a large swaddle muslin (so many uses). Depending on where we are going and how long for depends on how many spare sets I pack, sometimes it’s safer to have two spare sets.

I don’t often pack spares for Harvey, now he’s eighteen months old, he generally doesn’t need any. However if I know we’re going somewhere that might be wet or muddy I take spares, plus wellies and waterproofs! Our favourites are his Joules wellies and Muddypuddle waterproofs.

The next items I pack are extra layers for both boys, essential at this time of year! A hat, booties and thick, warm cardigan for Jude and gloves and an extra jumper or thick top for Harvey! (Harvey isn’t keen on keeping a hat on at the moment but sometime I’ll try and sneak this in as well)

A few bits for me….. my hands get so dry!!

My baby carrier….. Jude loves to be carried and this comes in a handy bag, I don’t leave the house without one. I either pop it in the top of my baby bag or on the bottom of the buggy!

The feeding pod that came in my pacapod bag! It’s fantastic and the prefect size for fitting in all the essentials….. a spare muslin, bib, milk, bottles, nursing shawl and my toddler tracker! Or whatever it is that you need for feeding. Plus I can also squeeze in a snack for the toddler and his water cup! It’s seals up nicely so I don’t have to worry about leaks or mess!

I hope this has been helpful and answers a few of your questions.

links to both ⬇️

Pacapod Croyde (pewter)Storksak Hero Floral Both these bags have been gifted to me but my views are my own and very honest.

Love Lindsay X

Christmas gift ideas for mums to be……🎄 

Yes I said the “Christmas” word, but now halloween and bonfire night are out the way the count-down really is on! That’s means it’s time to start thinking about gifts and for the more organised of us planning ahead. 

So to help out those relatives, friends and partners of mums to be, and to give the soon to be mummy’s some ideas for their Christmas list, I thoughts I would put together a little list of mum to be gift ideas for all budgets with a few of my favourites! 

Up to £20…..
Hottea Mama….. pregnancy gift set £18

Trilogy Certified Organic Rosehip Oil £19.50


Pregnancy Journal £10


Sleep Night-Time Bath and Shower Gel £12

Top Shop Maternity….. Bonjour BabyT-shirt £16



£20 – £50….

Bloom & Blossom X Mamas and Papas dressing gown £39





Marks and Spencer….. luxury cashmere socks £35 





In the box gifts – Mama to be £35+ (pre designed boxes or build your own)





Mama Mio Push Pack £40




Isabella Oliver…… Maternity scoop top (Available in a range of colours) £39

£50 – £100…..

Joules Cozies Suede Slippers £59.99



Champneys pregnancy massage…. Mama Mio top to toe £85



Isabella Oliver…. Emily maternity dress £95

Mama Mio Bloomin Lovely pamper pack £50


Seraphine…… The Bump Kit £85

£100+ 

T+M Selfridges Elwood Backpack Black/Gold £130




BBhugme maternity pillow £135

Enjoy shopping!!!

Love 


Lindsay 


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MINI POST….The Gro Clock!!!

So last weekend those of us that are parents faced the dreaded, twice annual, mighty scary clock change! Yes the clocks were altered by a whole hour!!! 

I remember the days when I looked forward to the morning of clock change with great anticipation, any extra hour in bed! 🙌🏼 what wasn’t to love.

Well how things change, my husband and I, like many parents in the UK, were left wondering what this change would bring. And, like many parents were looking for any options that might help make the transition a little easier. 

Enter the Gro Clock! If you haven’t tried one of these they certainly come highly recommended and are an ingenious way of encouraging your children to follow a bedtime and morning sleep routines.

So what is it? The clock is a child friendly clock which allows the parents the ability to set a bed time and wake time and uses colours and images to help children understand when they should be asleep and when it’s time to get up! 

The clock can be set to up in a number of ways and gives parents the option of displaying the digital time in addition to the pictures, useful to those older children learning to read numbers and tell the time! 


At night (at the parents chosen time) the clock changes colour and displays a moon center turning to a star surrounded by a series of smaller starts, which slowly change as the time ticks by. 

When morning arrives (again, time set by the parents) the clock glows yellow and the star is replaced by a sun! It shows that it’s time to get up!! 

The clock is accompanied by a lovely book ‘Sleepy Farm’. This tells a story to encourage children to sleep well and sleep until morning. The Gro Company have also created a handy reward chat which can be downloaded from their website to help encourage little ones to follow a routine. 

A better nights sleep, a little lay in, what’s not to love! 

I hope you’ve found this useful, and your little one has made the transition smoothly! 

Love 


Lindsay 


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What I’ll be packing in my hospital bag this time! 

You would think that second time around packing a hospital bag would be quite self explanatory, after all there are less than eighteen months between one and two so I should be able to remember, right? 


Nope I’ve completely forgotten it all and I had to return to good old ‘Google’ to jog my brain into remembering all the bits that I might need and when to pack it (recommendations varied to pack your bag between 34 and 36 weeks, as I’m nearly 36 I guess I best get packing). Once I got going it was a little easier, although these lists could go on forever I’ve tried not to include too much, before you know it, your packing the kitchen sink… you know “just in case”.


For the Mummy to be!!!

Labour time…..

  • Something super comfy to wear during labour (something you don’t care to much about!)
  • Any extras you want for your labour experience – birthing plan/preferences, electric candles, mini speakers, scented diffuser etc.
  • A pillow, extra comfort will be needed, again before and after.
  • Food and drink – your going to need your energy.
  • Books/magazines/music – things you can relax with, you don’t know how long you will be in; before (if your induced) and after!
  • Don’t forget your hospital notes and any birth plan/preferences you’ve organised.


After birth…..

  • Right up the top of the list – Giant granny pants for after!! Yep it’s all about comfort not glamour! (And always pack spares, more than you think your need)
  • Comfortable bra’s (2/3) nursing ones if your planning on breast feeding.
  • Sanitary pads (make sure you pack enough and go for the super absorbent type, Mothercare and other baby shops sell maternity specific ones.)
  • Your wash bag with all of the essentials.
  • Clean comfy pjs for after your labour, when you’ve had a shower and your finally feeling a bit more you again (I would suggest a dark colour) and more than one pair, you never know how long your going to be in and don’t want to be caught short.
  • Slippers or huge fluffy grippy socks, no one likes cold toes. 
  • Dressing gown
  • Towel
  • Food and drink for after – I was so hungry after baby one! 
  • Comfortable clothing for you to travel home in.


And for the baby….

  • Bottles and ready made milk if you are planning on bottle feeding.
  • Small burping Muslin.
  • Large swaddle Muslin.
  • Soft baby blankets from home.
  • Baby grows (newborn or if you have big babies like me 0-3 months!)
  • Hat
  • Cardigan
  • Vests 
  • Newborn nappies
  • Wipes (I love water wipes for a newborn)
  • Don’t forget to have the car seat in the car ready to bring up to the room at home time. 

And of course a bag to keep it all in. When I head into the hospital I quite liked separating out mine and the baby’s stuff, I found it easier when I was doing those last minute rummages to actually find the bits I needed, or trying to direct the other half as to where to find things.

For all the babies essentials I’ll be using the PacaPod Croyde bag. It’s clever design allows you to separate out all the babies bits and pieces for easy accesss (and husband proof rummaging!). Its unique pod design means you to easily locate the bits you need by packing them separately into the individual pods. The bottles and milk into the feeding pod, spare/change of clothes, nappies and wipes into the changer pod. Then any extra bits and pieces into the clear travel pod. 

It’s extra roomy size means that it’s perfect for packing any extra “just in case” hospital bits and when I’m finally home I know it’s size will mean it’s great for packing both toddler and baby bits together when we head out for the day. 
The bag has lots of other handy features including changing mat, cross body strap, pram attatchment straps, large parent pockets for easy access to all those bits and pieces you need (with the addition of a handy key fob attachment.) As an added bonus, when your not using it as a baby bag, it’s large enough in size to accommodate most laptops and all the bits and pieces you might want for baby free travel! 

Now I’m just to sort a bag for my own bits and pieces! 

I hope you have found my little summary helpful. I’ve linked some of my favourite baby bits that I have mentioned I’ll be packing below.

Love 

Lindsay 

X

  1. PacaPod Croyde bag
  2. Storksak Muslin Swaddle
  3. StorkSak Muslin Squares
  4. Water wipes
  5. Pampers Newborn Nappies
  6. Comfy PJs (for after)
  7. Dressing gown
  8. Sanitary pads

My hypnobirthing experience so far! 

With less than six weeks until the bumps due date we are certainly on the count down to ‘D day’. Recently, I have tried to try rewind my mind back to my feelings at this same point in my previous pregnancy and I find it hard to pinpoint how I was feeling. I don’t remember ever feeling afraid, I like to look on the positive (yet realistic) side of things, what was to be was to be and what was to come was the unknown. 

I remember thinking there was little I could do and not knowing what to expect, yet also having few expectations. I had done my trusty NCT course and was the only remaining mummy in my group to give birth. Each of the birth stories in our group had varied so much, from premature births, to natural water births, epidural desperate mums and emergency c-sections. As a result I felt there was no way I could know what was to come so I might as well just go with it. I was asked many times if I had a birth plan; the answer was simply ‘no’, I question how you can plan something so unpredictable, something you know so little about! To that end I much prefer the hypnobirthing way of wording it ‘birth preferences.’ My ‘preferences’ a natural, non induced, water birth! 

Fast forward to today and much is the same, what will be will be and what’s to come is still the unknown! By birth preferences remain the same. I’d prefer it to happen naturally, I’d love a water birth, with minimal intervention if I can. But these, just like before, are just preferences! With Harvey I went two weeks over due and after two failed sweeps I was induced. Unfortunately from this point forward it didn’t go so well and a lot of the birth was taken out of my hands. This time my preference is to keep control! 

Looking back at my birth preparation with baby one it was minimal really. My NCT course was interesting and provided me with a great group of friends (eighteen months on a still talk to on a daily basis.) But in regards to what it taught me about birth preparation I felt it just reinforced a lot of what I already knew (although I’m aware this varies depending on course and instructor.) So this time around I was excited to have the opportunity to learn about birth from a different perspective and embraced the opportunity to try hypnobirthing. 

We did our course with the lovely Jemma from @stilettostostrollers. Jemma set up her bussiness after a positive experience of hypnobirthing herself and is a prefect example of how well it can work. Jemma had a calm and peaceful water birth at home. 

I was slightly apprehensive as to how my husband would feel about the course, and yes he was skeptical to start with. However, after our sessions were finished and we were discussing what we had learnt he admitted that actually he could see the benefit of the sessions and he was also left feeling more prepared. 

Hypnobirthing is a complete antenatal course and aims to teach you the techniques needed for a calm and controlled birth. It hopes to leave you feeling empowered, confident about your birthing choices and reduce the associated fear of childbirth. The program aims to teach you the philosophy of hypnobirthing and birth. As well as the important of connecting both mind and body to help you understand how fear can affect birth. It also teaches the important role of your bith companion throughout your labour and delivery. It wants couples to look forward to the day their baby arrives, not to worry or even worse fear the day. 

The course certainly equips you with simple self hypnosis, relaxation and breathing techniques. Including meditation scripts and audio affirmations, plus tonnes of other tips and tricks(always helpful!). Ultimately it gives you the knowledge to understand your options, empowers you and allows you the chance to make confident choices throughout your labour and birth. 

We compleated two sessions with Jemma, one as a small group (three couples) and the second was a 1 2 1 at home. Jemma was great, she was easy to talk to, realistic, honest and happy to answer any questions we had. She made us feel relaxed in our sessions and we finished our final session feeling more prepared for what was to come. 

So what can you expect to find on a hypnobirthing course? A mix of breathing exercises (to be practiced pre and used during labour), relaxation techniques, visualisations and affirmations, confidence building and fear releasing techniques. As well as learning a little bit of the science on how your body is designed to deliver a baby and how to encourage your mind and body to work in harmony with one another.
Your partner will learn the importance and significance of their role during the labour, learning massaging techniques and how to protect and look after you during the process.  
You will also be taught that like learning any new technique it’s all about ‘practice, practice, practice.’ 

This is perhaps my biggest hurdle at the moment, with work and a toddler to look after I often wish I had more time to fully commit to learning and implementing the hypnobirthing techniques. However, I am confident I’m trying my best with the affirmations in my mind, I feel calm and relaxed about the birth to come. I feel focused on the hypnobirthing positive philosophy and have the positive wording in my mind (surge instead of contraction!) My mindset is positive and I’m looking forward to the arrival of my baby no matter how it makes it entrance into the world I believe I can make this both a positive and exciting experience.
Jemma offers both 1 2 1 and group sessions and you can link to her website here. If your quick she is currently offering a 15% discount on group course bookings in October (limited availability).

Love


Lindsay 
X

My maternity must haves so far…. 

There are so many maternity products out there sometimes you have to wonder where to start! 

This is just a summary of some of the maternity products that I have been using recently and enjoying so far this pregnancy. Some I used in my first pregnancy, others are new to me! All of them I’m loving and for many different reasons….


Over the bump leggings



So easy to wear and so many uses…

  • Wear with an oversized jumper for comfort and style (red is apparently the colour of the season) 
  • Pull on with your over the knee boots, under a dress for a little more warmth, plus you can avoid the discomfort of tights!! 
  • Or just add a big comfy cardigan, oversized t-shirt and a pair of fluffy socks and your ready for movie night! 

So many options, I picked up mine from Jojo Mama Bebe, but you can find them all over the place for a range of prices! 


The classic Bretton top! 



Enough said really…… fitted or oversized, style doesn’t have to stop just because your pregnant! Isabella Oliver have a great selection.

Jeans

Whatever your style, however your the fit a good pair of maternity jeans are a must! These ones are from Jojo Mama Bebe and I’ve found them super comfy for the price and they most importantly stay put!!


Maternity pillow


I recently started using the bbhugme maternity pillow and can quite honestly say it’s amazing! With baby number one I had a foam filled pillow and whilst it was ok it wasn’t a patch on this. By the time pregnancy number two started it was in no condition to last another nine months. My advice, invest early and invest wisely, these pillows are amazing! 


Pregnancy vitamins

Through both my pregnancies I’ve taken Pregnacare Plus, I’ve been happy with them and felt satisfied that I’m giving the bump and my body the little extras that it needs! Remember your body is doing an amazing job, there is no harm in helping it along the way! 


Mama Mio products 


I’ve tried lots of different maternity products over my two pregnancies and have fallen for the Mama Mio ones, hook, line and sinker. They glide on easily, smell absolutely amazing and really feel like they are doing the job. I definitely recommend giving these ago!! 


Reading material


Through both of my pregnancies I’ve found time for a little maternity related reading. With baby number one ‘What to expect when your expecting’ was a favourite and I’ve found myself returning to it this time round. Added to this, second time round,  I’ve been reading Clemmie Hoopers ‘How to grow a baby and push it out’ and after taking a hypnobirthing course with the lovely Jemma from @stilettostostrollers I’ve also been doing my homework reading! 


Loungewear and nightwear 

When you are pregnant you spending a lot of time lounging or at least attempting to! Comfy clothing is essential, just as essential as a good nights sleep. Making all varieties of comfy night and lounge clothes is an absolute must….. let me introduce Mamas and Papas collaboration with Bloom and Blossom. They have an amazing range of super soft, extra comfortable lounge and night wear!! Go, shop and buy now!! 


Me time and sleep

It’s free but sometimes the hardest to come by! Find time for yourself and enjoy it!! Have a bath, read a book, enjoy some chocolate, watch a movie or just get an early night! 
The shopping list and links are below! 
Enjoy!! 

Love 

Lindsay x


Shopping list 🛒 

  1. Over the bump leggings – £20 Jojo Mamal Bebe 
  2. The Classic Bretton – £65 Caia Maternity top Isabella Oliver – £41 (SALE) Arlington Striped maternity top 
  3. Dark wash maternity ripped skinny Jeans – £35 Jojo Mama Bebe 
  4. Maternity pillow – £135 bbhugme Maternity Pillow
  5. Pregnancy vitamins – £15.29 per box pregnacare plus
  6. Products – £12-45 Mama Mio
  7. Reading material – Amazon, prices vary
  8. Lounge and night wear – £19-29 Mamas and Papas Bloom and Blossom

Where’s the time gone….. going back to work! 

It’s been nearly half a term since I returned to work (yes I teach!), after just over a year of maternity leave! I had very mixed emotions about the whole ordeal and now after some little time to reflect I thought I would update you on how it has been going. 

Firstly let me give you a little context. I’m a teacher working in a small school in Surrey. I absolutely love my job and have been at my current school for a number of years. I have the most fantastic colleagues and the children that I have the pleasure of teaching are on the whole pretty great too!

I really missed my work whilst on maternity leave and it actually took me a very long time to adjust to not being there (perhaps another story, for another time, if I’m ever feeling brave enough.) Whilst on maternity leave, I chose to keep a lot of contact with my work, popped in occasionally to see my friends and keep an overview in preparation for what I would be returning to. I also managed to do a number of my ‘in touch days’ which I really enjoyed and were a good way to keep contact and ease back in. 
Harvey was a summer baby and I worked up until he was born (two weeks late.) In return I was able to take the full year with him, not returning to work until he had passed his first birthday. By this point there were only three weeks remaining until the school summer holidays started and I would be off again (I was very lucky it worked out this way!) 

In regards to childcare for these three weeks we relied solely on our family. Harvey spent the first week in Sussex with my in laws and the subsequent two weeks with my parents who live locally. 
The first week was by far the hardest. We didn’t get to see Harvey at all (except for a few pictures) and I found the return to work exhausting both physically and emotionally. When Harvey finally returned home on the Saturday after my first week I was over the moon to see him, even if he did try hard to give me the cold shoulder for the first ten minutes! Looking back I know that not having him about was very fortunate, I got up early and worked late and I didn’t have to feel any mum guilt about missing dinner, bath or bed because no matter when I returned home he wasn’t going to be there! 


The next two weeks were a little different. Harvey went to stay at my parents who live about thirty minutes from my work so I was always conscious of the fact that if I finished early enough I could make it to theirs for some of the bedtime routine and most importantly a Harvey cuddle. The first week he spent with my parents I had a number of work commitments and only managed to get there three out of five nights. In the final week I was fortunate enough to get to Harvey for dinner, bath and bed every night. This was exhausting, not only was the return to work a shock to the system but my desire to do everything (work to my full potential and be the best mummy I could) wore me out. By the time the holidays started I was shattered! 
Now I have returned to work on a long term basis (at least until baby number two arrives). I work four days a week and have been lucky enough to have family do all my childcare (Harvey spends his time with both sets of grandparents, he loves it!). I have found the first half of term absolutely exhausting and I can not wait until the holidays start again in a few weeks time. The days have been long and I’ve been growing big, currently in my third trimester! I miss Harvey terribly and have found the adjustment very difficult. Harvey on the other hand has taken it all in his stride.
So what have I learnt? I don’t have to do everything; Harvey will still love me. Let family help; they want to and it’s what they are there for! Work and motherhood together is in no doubt exhausting and it’s been hard to find a suitable and practical work/life, mummy/teacher balance. 

For now I’m just trying to make the most of the weekends with Harvey and I’m looking forward to my half term holiday. I’m sure just as I finally get used to it all, I’ll be off on maternity leave again and starting a whole new challenge with two little ones! 

Love 

Lindsay 

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