Tag Archive | babies

What’s a good start to education?

A similar event in a Suffolk library

There was the sound of giggling and tiny tots voices coming from the children’s section. I was in the library returning books and couldn’t help having a peep to see what was going on.

The toddlers and parents were sat in a circle on the floor having such a happy time together doing rhymes and actions and songs etc. Lovely to see. Fab to see parents engaging and interacting with their kids (no phones anywhere). And full marks to the library for initiating it to help them achieve it.

It’s not something that comes naturally to everyone; engaging with tiny beings, pre-conversation, especially when you’ve only been used to adult chat. I remember wondering what to do with the littlies sometimes – not being a great chitterer myself it didn’t come naturally. So groups like this are great to help those of us who are less inspired in that department to get going.

Because it’s really important that we do. For the simple reason that all the chat, chant, song and engagement with the youngsters we have, at whatever age, is the foundation of education. 

This contact, connection, interaction in whatever form is the pre-cursor for essential skills on which education is built – communication being one, as well as listening, observing, responding, thinking, vocabulary development, the basic skills needed for learning to progress. All founded in those simple little sing-songs, chats with your child, constantly reading to them, engaging in whatever way. They are the building blocks from which the mastery of language, communication, mental agility and other skills for wider learning can grow. Just from the stimulation of these types of activities when they are young. Well – it should continue throughout childhood really.

Parents think that getting kids reading early or writing their name, recognising numbers etc will give them a good start to their education. It does.

But the reality is that it starts much, much earlier than that. A good start to education is you!

(For more, check out the last section; ‘How you influence your child’s education’, in my book ‘Mumhood. How to Handle it. Why it Matters’)

Laying the foundations of education

Thought I’d do a two parter about education – for parents with little ones at home. And all those who are wondering about it.

It doesn’t seem that we’ve had our babies long when we begin to worry about education.

How much, how soon, how clever are they going to be, what can we do to help? These are the kinds of worries all parents have. But whichever route you decide on for your child, whether that route be conventional schooling or home education, the experiences that have the most profound impact on their educational achievements are those when they’re at home with you.

Now, no way do you need to panic and rush to get books out and start doing formal lessons with tiny tots. This not what education is about, although this is how it’s sometimes perceived.

Education is about something broader than that which extends beyond doing writing, maths and other similar academic exercises. This article is about laying the foundations of a holistic education; the holistic development of a living being, as indeed education should really be if it is to be of value.

For a holistic approach when your child is mostly with you is what makes a more formalised education work well later on.

What do I mean by holistic?

To take a holistic view means to consider the whole of something rather than parts in isolation.

In terms of a child and their education, it means that we need to consider the whole of their development rather than just the development of their academic abilities. And we need to consider education, not as a race or competition to get qualification, but rather as part of a developing human being.

To be holistic education needs to be about developing a rounded human being who has many skills that are as important as academic skills – skills which will enable children to use their education to enhance their lives. Thinking skills, for example, or the skills required to integrate, socialise and be a good person. The skills required to show compassion, care and commitment to others. The skills needed to be responsible, maintain good moral standards and understand how we fit into the world and how the world can support us, what we need to contribute to it in return. The skills required to express ourselves, be articulate, self aware and self confident so that we can lead good and happy lives and find fulfilling work. The skills needed to maintain our health of mind and body and be responsible for our own wellbeing.

These are the kinds of skills we need to be human. Being human is a vital part of being educated. And these are all vital skills that enable an education to be successfully used to enhance lives and gain achievements.

If you think about it, an education in itself is of no value unless you have these personal skills with which to use it. Using education is what matters. Paying attention to the whole of the person’s development is what makes an education more useful and more holistic.

And much of what happens during a child’s time at home is what lays the foundation for that.

How can we do that at home?

It is really very simple to lay a foundation of skills which will help your child to get the best out of education. In fact it is so simple it is probably what you do already. It is what you do as part of your parenting.

Preparation for education is not only about priming your child ready for academics. It is more to do with teaching your child about living a life.

Living our lives we are learning all the time, although as adults we probably don’t realise that thinking that the majority of our learning took place within the school walls. However, many people say that they learnt more after they left school than during the time they were in it. And that is because once they left ‘schooling’ they began to learn the real skills needed to lead real lives.

For example; leading real lives we don’t often use some of the maths or science which was drummed into us at school for the purpose of exams, unless we’ve followed professional careers that require them. But we do use the skills needed to budget or understand nutrition and our bodies enough to know what food keeps us well.

Another example; we don’t necessarily need to be able to understand Shakespeare but we do need to be able to read, interpret instructions, and communicate in a variety of forms.

These life skills like communication or budgeting are the ones that are most important and they start at home. You can encourage them by simply chatting about what you’re doing each day and why. That’s why spending time at home with young children is so valuable, because actually, you are your child’s first teacher.

During those first five years it is not essential that they can read fluently, but it is essential they enjoy books, that times with books and stories are happy experiences. It is also essential that they understand a variety of social rules and can communicate appropriately, that they are able to manage their behaviour to a certain degree and why, understand what respect is – by being respected.

Small things that you do and discuss in your daily living teaches them these kinds of things. And the way in which they learn these things best is by being involved.

By being involved with what you’re doing, by chatting and questioning, they begin to interpret and understand how lives are lived. Interpreting and understanding things is the basis of learning. This is how you influence their learning and their education, both right now and for the future. All you have to do is to allow them to be involved. Spend time. Explain. Talk. Listen. Show.

As well as doing this another powerful influence on their learning is play. In order to learn children first need lots of opportunities to play.

And that’s part of what I want to talk about next time, along with ideas for simple activities, and some thoughts about their future!

Holding babies – could it be the beginning of their education?

prickles and flowers 001I always held the baby in my left arm. I thought this was to automatically free up my right, being right handed, to carry on doing the essential jobs – like put the kettle on!

Apparently though, it isn’t to do with that at all.

I’m reading a little more about how the brain works at the moment. I’ve always been fascinated about how the brain affects the way we feel and what we believe, as well as how we grow and learn. I’m forever intrigued by the question; are we just the result of our brain activity then?

Ruby Wax’s book ‘Sane New world’ is the result of her own voyage of discovery in managing her depression through mindfulness. So she’s studied the brain and writes about it in ways lay-folk like me can understand. She shows how its growth and development influences who we become and what we feel.

Simply put, brain development is about electrical impulses and connections which develop from the moment we are born. And if there was ever any doubt in your mind about the important reason why parents should be engaged with their babies, she dispels it in a lovely little paragraph about holding them:

“The memory of how Mommy is with Baby influences the baby’s physiology, biology, neurology and psychology. How the brain grows is affected by how she put you down, held, smiled, ignored or forgot you; she is the uber-regulator, the big boss of brain development. The neural clusters for social and emotional learning are sculpted by Mommy’s attunement with Baby. She grows these neurons in the baby by making direct eye contact with her left eye to Baby’s right eye. This is why Mommies usually hold babies in their left arm so this eye contact is made easier. When they gaze into each other’s eyes, their hearts, brains and minds are linking up. These face to face interactions increase oxygen consumption and energy. Also holding the baby in this position means it can hear Mommy’s heartbeat. Seeing her loving face looking down on Baby triggers high levels of endogenous opiates so he experiences pleasure in later social interactions by the positive and exciting stimulation form Mommy.”

 She also says that the linking up of the right and left hemispheres of the brain are accomplished through mum and baby ‘eye contact, facial expressions and speaking goo goo’. In fact, all of a child’s early brain development is based on interactions with mum. And new research shows that even genetic development can be influenced by parental behaviour and changes continuously.

So if ever you needed a good reason to forget the jobs and hold your baby remember that in doing so you are enhancing their mental, emotional, and even genetic development and tendencies.

I never needed another reason – I just loved it anyway. And wouldn’t have missed it for anything. But to all those who doubt the importance of mums (or dads) being at home they need to remember that they are doing a vital job of developing a new member of the human race.

And there’s no substitute for holding!

All experiences change us – mumhood too

Untitled-12 changedYou might want to get a cuppa – this is a long one – with a special exert from ‘Mumhood’.

Mumhood is a long going, on-growing business. I should know; mine are twenty plus and I’m still learning how to deal with it!

It’s a lovely business though, uplifting, inspirational to see how little ones develop, a business full of love. New challenges come our way constantly (yep – even when they’re twenty), but challenges can have beautiful outcomes.

As mums, we are growing too. But that sometimes gets forgotten as we attend to our children.

MUMHOOD. How to handle it. Why it matters’ is my attempt to readdress that balance. To try and give all mums a helping hand.

So here’s a little taster from the last chapter especially for you:

………On-growing through mumhood is a life’s journey – you are of course a mum for life.

But it’s an amazing wondrous journey which you are only really at the start of when you first give birth. As you journey through it, the experiences you encounter along the way will transform and enlighten you, teach and develop many skills and talents you never even knew you were capable of. Your sense of responsibility and care, commitment and respect will probably double, treble even. You grow and mature in ways that are inconceivable.

I can quite shock myself when I think how irresponsible and disrespectful I might have been pre-mumhood. But we learn as we go…

Growing as a person, learning and changing, being happy or sad, is all part of anyone’s journey, parent or not. Your life as a parent, and as a person, needs within it the same elements as anyone else’s, parent or not, in order for it to be enjoyable.

The pitfall for many women is that, as soon as they become mothers, they forget this simple fact. Forget to pay attention to other elements especially if they’re giving up the work they did before as they devote themselves to their mumhood, their new baby, or are busy with a whirlwind toddler or a challenging pre-schooler.

Having a new baby in the house is such a celebratory, joyous time. Like having a birthday every day of the week. You just want to attend to this miraculous being that’s now in your life and forego everything else. And that’s great. It feels great – it’s good to do.

But sometimes you can get so absorbed in doing that, so attentive to the needs of your child, even years on, that you can forget that you need attention too, completely forget your own needs. And it gets even more complicated when those needs have changed while your back was turned and you’re not sure what you need any more. What you want to do. Or even what makes you feel good now.

Recognising what’s happening

My needs changed dramatically and regularly during those first few years that my babies grew. I changed dramatically, although it took a while for me to recognise what was happening to me. Especially since I was so absorbed by my beautiful baby.

Being a mum can be an all-consuming, overwhelming life’s work. It is certainly a life’s commitment. It will take up enormous amounts of time and energy.

But not all of it – it is important that it doesn’t.

As you can think about and choose your role and your work as a parent, you can also choose to bring other elements into your life besides your mum tasks. And how happy you are while you are a mum is very much dependent on these choices.

Being happy is a choice – so I’ve read. I have often thought I bet it wasn’t a mother who wrote it! It certainly feels as if the circumstances and commitments you have as a parent take away your choice.

I have also read that people succumb to depression because they feel that their world, as they know it, is falling apart. That the meaning they attached to their world has completely altered. When I read that I felt as if they were exactly talking about mums. Because that is exactly what happens to you when you become a mum. Your world, as it was before, falls apart. That’s not necessarily in a bad way. But everything changes.

It’s bound to. It has to really. To maintain that it doesn’t, or fight for it not to, is to deny an opportunity for your own personal development, learning and growth.

But handling those changes, and the choices you make as a consequence of them, will also influence how happy you feel with what you’re doing. And to handle them you have to actually understand them and accept that they are happening to you in the first place.

The reality is that all experiences change us. However big or small those experiences are. Whether they are as traumatic as moving house, having someone die, breaking off a partnership, changing jobs, or as seemingly small and insignificant as going to the theatre, reading the work of an author you haven’t come across before, buying a new style, networking with someone new online.

These new experiences all will have an impact, even if you’re not aware of it at the time. So acknowledge that this is true.

However, even knowing this, most of us are completely unprepared for the dynamic change and impact that having a baby makes to us. To us personally, and to our lives.


Becoming a mother does change us enormously. This may not be apparent at first. You may not want to accept that at all – ever. But there’s no getting away from the stark, staggering truth; having a baby changes a girl.

And with change there are two things you have to face.

The first: you are losing some of what you once were.

The second: you are growing into someone new.

And these are two big issues you need to come to terms with and handle if you want to be happy. If you want to keep happy even though you are going through the falling apart of your world as you knew it. If you want to continue to be the best mum you can be it matters that you acknowledge this and learn how to adapt to a new and different contentment.

It is well recognised that there are two huge transitions in a woman’s life; puberty and menopause. I would say there’s another huge transition in between those two; the transition that takes place as a woman becomes a mother.

Just like with puberty and menopause this transition takes time, it’s very emotive, very unsettling, and yet you have to get on with living and coping and managing life as if it wasn’t. But unlike puberty and menopause, which are expected and accepted – in society too, you are pretty unprepared for this particular personal transition into mumhood. And you’ve also got another draw on your reserves – your lovely child.

Many of us find it really hard to adapt to change. We cling to old ways like a drowning man clinging to a log. Many parents do this subconsciously making it even harder to adapt to the changes having children inevitably bring.

For women it is particularly hard because it is their world on which it has the greatest impact. It is women who make the greatest personal sacrifices. It is your life’s plan that suffers the biggest disruption.

However fighting change is futile. To handle it you need to give yourself plenty of understanding and sympathy. Understand that these changes are going to affect you emotionally. Accept it’s going to take some adapting to and go with the flow, because you will need to adapt.

The great thing about change is that it is about growing. Change is a positive, life enhancing progress. It’s not just the children who are doing the growing – it’s you too. Just because you’ve reached adulthood doesn’t mean to say you’ve stopped growing or learning or changing. You, like with your child, are never finished. As you nurture the growth of your child, appreciate the same is happening to you.

Trying to stay the same is unhealthy. You will stagnate. You will become dull and down and frustrated. However much you try to ‘go back’ it will not feel the same as it did before and those feelings can be horrible. It’s not good for you or for the people around you. Or for your child. Maintaining that you, and life, are the same as before you had a child also disrespects the duty you have now as a parent who is responsible for the growth and wellbeing of another living being.

How could that not change you?

Instead of trying to keep everything the same as it was before allow yourself to swim with the changes. Allow yourself to grow. Look after yourself as you weather these changes. Go with your feelings and your intuition. Do what you want. Accept yourself as you are now. Be brave about forging ahead into unknown territory, even if it is something or some way of being you’d never normally associate with you. Liberate yourself from old expectations.

The exciting thing is you never know what you might discover, but do allow yourself to learn and discover. It’s totally uplifting.

Your needs

Having a child, making the transition to being a mum, usually means sacrifice. You gain enormously, but you sacrifice too.

In fact, you make a huge amount of sacrifices when you become a mum. That’s inevitable. It’s also tough – especially if you were unprepared and I don’t think there is anything that could prepare you unless you’ve been closely involved with others who’ve become mums before you. Even so, you are different.

It’s quite tough to endure the sacrifice of your time, your energy, your personal needs, your previous relationships, your previous confidence, your independence, and a spontaneity about life. All that can disappear.

Personal needs are the greatest sacrifice. That’s an area that seems to readily go and which mums tend to forget to pay attention to. It takes a while to handle it.

Some mums become so engrossed in the needs of their child they completely forget to pay attention to their own wants and desires. And some to such an extent they even forget what those needs are.

That’s why I’ve kept on repeating throughout this book; ‘look after yourself’.

Staying in touch with yourself as a mum now is so important. It is your personal needs and wants not being attended to that can easily steal away that happy feeling. And now I’m not only talking about your needs for a rest or sleep or good food. Those needs usually make themselves known quite readily. I’m talking about your other needs, the less apparent ones, that make you fulfilled as a person not only a mother.

These might include your need for adult company. Your need to go to the gym, or a walk, or a swim, or a dance. Your need to do some other activity besides mother your child, that is personal to you. Your need to have time for other work. Your need to meet adult friends. Your need to have some time alone. Your need to have time for a personal pursuit, creative activity, a course or a class.  And lastly to recognise that your tastes will have changed and you will have a need to do new things.

These needs are just as important as your need to rest. They must be met too. They are as much of a priority as anyone else’s. For you to grow as a person these things need addressing. You must never completely sacrifice all your needs to those of your children or wider family. If you don’t respect your needs no one else will. Your development is just as important.

Sacrificing all of yourself up to the needs of others doesn’t make you a good mum either. It’s not good for your child. It isn’t good parenting.

Sometimes though, that’s how mums make their life fulfilling. I have seen mums who try to satisfy their need for happiness through their children’s lives. By making their whole life an attendance to their children. They follow the doctrine that if they make their children happy then they are happy.

Now we are all happy if our kids are happy – we all want our children to be happy. Of course we do. But our own happiness is our own responsibility too; it falls to us to make our own lives happy outside of our children as well as through them. Placing all our capacity for our happiness at their door is putting an awful lot of pressure on them. It will soon burden them.

Your happiness is something you’re in charge of independent of your child’s happiness. And finding it will come from attending to your personal needs too. Not only those of your child.

Your life as a parent and another person too

A little story

My mum friends and I now recognise how our personal needs have changed gradually over our years of being a mum, as we have changed in ourselves and grown up a bit more. Although we didn’t believe at the start that becoming a mum changed us. Neither did we understand, when we did acknowledge it, in what way.

We have changed and grown dramatically. We’ve talked about it much and we decided that the idea that we might not have changed in all these years of parenting would be a pretty repulsive thought. Because that would mean we hadn’t learnt anything. You have to change in order to learn, you have to let go of old ideas in order to embrace new ones.

Through all that time there has been much about being a mum I absolutely loved (being with my gorgeous children) and other things about being a mum I loathed (definitely the domestic side of it). But my mum friends and I found that there were certain less obvious needs that required fulfilling in order for us to feel whole, happy, balanced, and satisfied with our life and work and role as a mother and another person too. It’s these we wanted to share.

Some of these less obvious needs lay in having: –

  • a balance between everything
  • personal pursuits
  • contrast
  • exercise
  • solitude
  • stimulation
  • recreation
  • personal time, without the children sometimes
  • love
  • choices, instead of staying stuck in an old habit

When we felt unhappy with life it was often because one or some of these needs weren’t being met. They’d got shifted down the list of priorities. It didn’t seem to matter that our attention to them was only quite small sometimes while other things took over, as long as they got back in balance in the end we felt better.

To keep them in balance you need to be aware of them in the first place. So, to make sure you’re fully aware of these less obvious needs, let me show you what they mean in a little more depth……

….I’m afraid you’ll have to read the book for the rest! See details on the ‘Mumhood‘ page


The value of mum

I’m doing it again; harping on about the importance of mums. About the value of their role, their time, the impact mums have simply being there engaging with their children. Because it’s SO understated. And I’m not the only one shouting…

There was an article in the Independent (click here) recently about studies which show how time spent talking to a baby impacts on their development, particularly their performance in education.

Now I don’t want mums to think they’ve got to start priming their tiny babies for grade getting already, as some parents might interpret this research.

But what it does endorse is the indisputable value of mums at home with their children (or dads for that matter) – and why that time matters so much. Which is very refreshing to know when so many political decisions seem to be geared towards getting mums out of the home away from their children, whilst paying a child-minder to do the job for them but with thirty others. (see here) I find that rather warped thinking!

The worth of the work mums do at home with their children cannot be emphasised enough; it creates the fundamental building blocks of a child’s future development. That’s how vital it is. Mums at home are the child’s first point of reference, first social reference, first understanding of relationships, first experience of language and communication, first introduction to the wider world, first teacher. It is a time when the basis of everything that is to follow is laid down, education included.

And above all it makes them feel loved, secure and valued. Children who feel loved, secure and valued are children who build stable relationships, who value others, who contribute something good to society.

There are no shortcuts in my mind. You have to properly interact, to talk, to engage.

The article says that ‘speaking directly to a baby or reading a bedtime story has a direct impact on how well they will do in school and possibly their career in later life.’ 

Professor Fernald from Stanford University in California says that; ‘Providing children with learning opportunities in their first years of life is as important a part of care-giving as changing and feeding them.

I think some parents neglect to take this on board, maybe because they feel they’re not clever enough to ‘teach’ their kids anything since they’re not ‘educated’ enough themselves (or qualified – as many define being educated). But the simplest of things will count.

Because what really counts is being there to do the talking, reading stories, chatting – whatever level. From doing things together however insignificant like putting socks on or carrots away and chanting and counting as you go, to more creative tasks like making things, cooking, play, building, playing with dolls, making up games. Going out together and talking about what you see. Meeting and playing with others. Feeding the ducks or taking the dog for a walk. Visiting Granny or doing the shopping. It all educates in some way or another.

Your child is picking up messages from you, guidance from you, demonstrations from you, which are teaching them things like how to behave, what to say, what’s appropriate, how to interact, who you love and how to care, as well as language, counting and all the other basics for education later on. And it starts in babyhood.

To do all that you have to be there. That’s why mums at home interacting with their kids do such an important job. This job teaches. It develops. It educates. It teaches the basics of being human.

That’s why we have kids isn’t it? Because we’re interested in raising and developing another human being?

That starts from the moment they’re born. And is surely part of our parental responsibility!

(You’ll find lots of support in doing that in my latest book; ‘Mumhood’ which champions mums from beginning to end!)

Mumhood – do you really appreciate what you do?

Untitled-12 changed I’m excited to tell you that my latest book Mumhood is now available on Kindle.

There’s been so much needed saying about becoming a mum I’ve been nearly bursting with it over the past years. So to be able now to give mums the credit and support they so deserve is like a dream come true for me; to be able to champion the life-changing, life-long transition they go through, expose the huge hidden workload and the essential role they play and give a little hand in coping with it.

But even more than that; the most important thing was to remind mums of their incomparable worth and real reason they matter so much to us all – when you become a mum it’s so easy to forget that!

The earlier chapters deal with life as you start out as a mum and the later ones grow with you and your baby. Here’s an exclusive extract from chapter 7 to sample:

…….What is it all worth? All this work you do as a mum? All the dilemma and the decision making, all the labour and the toil, the role you now play, the time you spend with your child, the hard task of sorting it all out. The mountain of unending jobs. What is it all really, really worth? What is the value of it?

In answer to that question here’s a fact that is so, so often overlooked:

PARENTS are SO IMPORTANT.                                  


The future of our world depends on the future of our children and parents are responsible for that.

The work of caring for, raising, nurturing, encouraging, primarily educating and developing those children is what parents do. Therefore it is the most worthwhile work you could ever be doing. It is one of the most valuable positions in society that you could ever have. You will be influencing the future. Everyone’s future.

How mums are worth it

Basically our children are a national treasure. Children and how they develop will govern the future; we’ll be dead and gone and they’ll be taking over and their children after that and so on….

So the people who care for them play a vital role. It’s as straightforward as that.

Basically, in the hands of the mums and dads lies the future of the human race. Simply because the future of our society, of our race, of our planet, is perpetuated by our children and how they interact with it, so therefore it is also in the hands of the parents who are responsible for those children. And since it is we mums I’m focussing on here, it is therefore true to say that a part of everyone’s future lies in our hands. It usually follows that what we do, our children will do. How we parent they will parent and so on…

Imagine for a moment who you’re raising.

Imagine how you could be holding in your hands the initial care and development of the next Einstein, or the next scientist who will perhaps solve the problem of global warming, or the next Prime Minister who might be finally able to bring about world peace, the next consultant who may be able to find a cure for cancer, or the next person who can solve the problems of drug abuse, crime, unwanted pregnancies, and other flaws in our society.

Just imagine – you never know what your children will become. What a thought!

But it is true, isn’t it? If you think about it like that – it must be – our children are the future. However big or small their contribution; in one way or another, they will be making a contribution. Our jobs as mums is to guide their contribution towards being a positive one.

For equally important are the less glamorous roles our kids might play like nurses or carers or teachers, cleaners or bin men, factory workers or farmers, creators of their own businesses. They are all an essential part of making our planet what it is. Every job our kids may do makes a contribution of some sort and it isn’t any less valuable because it may be less well glamorised.

Yet the majority of society remains so blind to that simple staggering truth. And the worth of our children, the value of the mothers who devote so much of themselves, so much of their personal time and attention to caring for them, remains so criminally, and dangerously, underestimated.

I so feel for every mum out there. I feel for every grain of self that women give to be mums. For it’s rarely appreciated how much is given. And lack of appreciation doesn’t help mums to feel happy doing that giving.

It’s important that mums have a sense of worth and happiness. It’s important for our own sake, and it’s important that our children are happy if they’re going to thrive and become the valuable members of society that they could be.

More often they are a product of a society where happiness doesn’t have its rightful and important place in our value system.

What does it matter? Why does happiness matter so much?

Why happiness matters and how society devalues mums

Happiness matters because happy people make up a society that is caring, respectful and good.

It matters because the world’s children are important and to make a good contribution they need to be happy too.

It matters because your individual child is important and the work you do as a mother to raise your child is immensely valuable. So the way you are with your child will be much better if you are happy, you will be a better parent…..

The book shows ways to do this, how to cope with becoming a mum, how to deal with the changes you go through, the workload and your new role and most importantly how to look after yourself so you get the best out of it.

You’ll find more details on recent posts ‘Hindsight for mums’ and ‘Especially for mums’ and on the ‘My Books’ page. Or you can buy the Kindle edition here.

I sincerely hope you like it and find in it the support you deserve.

Especially for mums…

Untitled-12 changed I’m so excited that my new book ‘MUMHOOD How to handle it Why it matters’ is now available on Amazon.

It’s a book I’ve wanted to do for such a long time because I wasn’t a mum long before I realised something extraordinary:

Mums are the most champion of workforces, incredible powerhouses, and the contribution they make through their parenting has as big an impact on the world as throwing a boulder in a world sized lake – it ripples out right round affecting us all!

Many people don’t seem to appreciate this though, even some of the mums! And for the most part, the work mums do, the impact they have, the life changing metamorphosis they personally go through, remains invisible, unappreciated and seldom respected.

But the fact remains that children affect everyone’s world whether you have them or not, whether they’re yours or someone else’s. They affect it now and they are the future. Think about it! Our approach to raising our children is going to impact on our future, because they are the generation who are eventually going to be in charge!

And guess what? It’s usually mums who are in charge of them! So it stands to reason that mums should get some respect, attention and support in doing this essential job of raising them right.

I’ve been hankering for years to do just that. To raise awareness of the magnitude of the job mums do in mothering their children and the impact they have on everything. And this book is the result.

The first chapters deal with the initial flush of motherhood and the changes we go through to become mums. The later chapters develop with you as your child develops, helps you cope, supports your own growth, as there’s a massive amount of growth and change you go through as well as the child! Get support for mums and the child’s supported too.

In between there are short tips about your lovely child, to help you keep all in balance.

Whatever stage of mumhood you’re at I’m hoping you’ll find something for you. What you’ll definitely find is love and respect for all of you mums everywhere. Because that’s exactly what you deserve!

Pop over to the books page to read some more…

Or see it on Amazon where you can see inside before you buy…

Hindsight for mums!

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New book coming soon

Hindsight is a wonderful thing. Looking back at things you did with all the wisdom learned from having done them and thinking ‘why didn’t I do that differently?’

Mumhood is like that. How many times did I think ‘if only I’d known that then’!

If only I’d known I could have avoided that tantrum if I’d approached it a little differently. If only I’d known what I know now about the way mumhood felt and why, how easier it would have been. And if I’d known, now things have turned out okay – and they mostly do – that I could have relaxed a bit more!

This is what I’m hoping to pass back down to all mums coming along the road behind me; hindsight. Because hindsight’s a wonderful thing, so you might as well have use of mine.

One of the things I wish I’d known at the time was how wrong people can be. How much of what people said wasn’t the case at all, and had I trusted my intuition a bit more I would have guessed.

I wouldn’t have had my baby on the back seat of the car for a start! (You’ll read about that!)

Neither would I have taken it as gospel when they said; ‘it’ll get worse’ when I was coping with sleeping and feeding and toddlers and sometimes feeling a bit rough. I think they were trying to be smug. But I lived in dread of that coming true as it already felt quite challenging. As it turned out they were completely wrong. It just got better and better.

Listening to them could have made me overlook the absolute joy and delight of being a mum. It’s incomparable – as long as you allow yourself to feel joy and delight and not get snagged up in one-up-mum-ship, petty politics and traditions that just don’t work for contemporary mothering.

And something else I wish I’d known was that it wasn’t necessarily going to be like they said in the baby books. It wasn’t that it was wrong exactly, it was just reading them you could feel you didn’t measure up. Okay – so they did have some stuff that was alright too, just not right for me. But that’s the important point; baby books, or any advice, are not gospel. You have to understand that and get what’s right for you from them, discard the rest and not feel bad about it.

We are all different, different mums, different characters, in different circumstances, have different babies and different needs. No one book is ever going to be the answer – not even mine.

The best answer is in you. Your intuition; perspective from others and professionals certainly, but mostly you, you making independent choices based on what you feel and what you know. By thinking about the kind of mum you want to be and going for it. By being what you need to be to do this job well.

That above everything else is what this book is about; being. Being the mum you want to be, need to be, how best to be it, how to handle it and why it matters.

Being the best you can be, both for you and for your baby and growing child.

Becoming a mum can be overwhelming, sometimes for a few years as other children come along. It is overwhelming dealing with babies and toddlers and growing kids never mind yourself, never mind making complex decisions about how to be now life has changed.

That’s why I’m offering this hindsight in the hope of making it less complex. And enabling you to thoroughly enjoy being a mum, growing into a mum, and engaging with the joy and delight it surely can be, as it has the potential to just get better and better!