Saturday, 30 March 2013

Parenting 101: How to not let the clocks ruin your child's sleep pattern

It is that annoying weekend again. I have ranted about this before and I will do it again now. Why oh why do we have to go through this annual ritual of messing up everyone's body clocks just so that it can be slightly brighter at night (but dark again in the mornings).

I still don't fully understand the benefit these days. But I will avoid ranting any more here. If you want to find out who to direct your rant to it was a certain Mr Willett.

Meanwhile, how do you cope this weekend when, not only have the children been off school for the Easter holidays - and presumably allowed to stay up a little later in the vain hope they might give you a lie in - but you also need to adjust their body clock back the other way in time for school's return?

Thursday, 28 March 2013

I had the strangest dream: is it worth using dream analysis?

Have you ever wondered about dream analysis? Are you a dream interpreter? Do you know what my dream means?

Dream analysis: is it useful?

I have to admit, My view of dream analysis is that it's a bit pointless. But there's a whole industry build around the analysis and interpretation of dreams. Books, DVDs, apps... Type "Dream analysis" into Google and you can be kept busy for years.

But is it actually any good? Can dreams give us clues or hints about how to better live our lives? Will analysing my dream make me a better wife, mother, blogger or accountant?

Wednesday, 27 March 2013

Pampering facials: treat yourself at Pure

I have experienced an hour and a half of pure lush.

From the relaxing back massage, to the repeated application of cream after cream gently onto my face, to the head massage and the slightly weird and smelly, but incredibly relaxing, mud pack that bubbled away under my back as I lay there. It was all gorgeous.

Why should I bother with a facial?

Some of you lucky readers will have pure, silky, smooth, alabaster skin. Flawless and wrinkle-free; yours will be the faces that I glower jealously at, if I pass you on the street, for my skin, after nearly 40 years, is suffering.

Friday, 22 March 2013

Google reader is no more: What alternatives are there?

Why is this article useful? Should I read on?

If you don't use Google Reader then you can probably disregard this post. My apologies for bringing you here for this. If you are a parent and want to stick around the site for parenting and beauty tips, how-to guides and family holiday reviews, please do grab a cuppa, put your feet up and delve straight into the menus above and over on the right.

However, if you do use Google Reader either to follow websites and News feeds, or as a developer or blogger, then read on.   This post is definitely for you.

Google Reader is giving notice

On Wednesday, 13th March, Google announced that it's RSS feed reader, used by millions to follow news sites and blogs, would cease on 1st July 2013.

Monday, 18 March 2013

Nightmares: How to deal with them when they start in young children

So, yesterday we talked about the potential causes of nightmares in children.   In my case this was a combination of poor judgement around approved film watching, and Little Miss George (4)  getting too used to having her big sister, Princess Peppa (6), sleeping over in her room whilst the roof was being fixed.

But once they start, is there anything you can do?

Little Miss George quickly developed a fear of the dark and wouldn't even go into our hall to go to the toilet on her own.  She'd wake up three or four times a night and cry out for us, only settling to sleep if we sat next to her bed holding her hand, got into bed with her, or, when it was close to morning, allowed her to get in our bed with us, something we have rarely done.

Sunday, 17 March 2013

Nightmares: Why do they suddenly start in young children?

Recently my youngest daughter, Little Miss George (4), had great fun hosting her elder sister, Princess Peppa (6), for a run of sleep-overs in her bedroom. We had a mattress set up on the floor of Little Miss George's bedroom, cuddly toys and all, for Princess Peppa to sleep in. She slept in there for roughly a month.

Why? Because we had a leak in the ceiling off Princess Peppa's bedroom stemming from last years winter of double thick level snow covering our roof. Without getting into too much detail (you can always tweet me if you're interested), previous owners of our house had taken out the chimney breast in Princess Peppa's room and left the chimney above. It wasn't well supported, and VERY tall, so we had that taken off too and capped. Then the snow came down last year and sat on the capped roof for weeks, slowly getting in behind the render as it hadn't been capped by the workmen correctly (with overlapping edges) so the water ran down into the loft space and ultimately into her ceiling.

Friday, 15 March 2013

Panic! No school places for 2013 baby boomers!

Are we, in England, so incredibly inept, that we feel the need to panic when a statistician tells us that there won't be enough school places for children starting school in 2 years time?

2 years? That's a long time, right? That's long enough to go out and recruit a few extra reception teachers, or to canvas the supply teachers already on the books, isn't it?

The BBC news website indicates that "a quarter of a million extra school places will be needed in England by autumn next year, with one in five schools already full or near capacity". They talk about the rising birth rate which was higher than expected over the last few years. Really? In a recession there's a high birth rate? Oh you do surprise me. Sarcastic? Moi? Never!

Thursday, 14 March 2013

Panoramic, beautiful views on your commute

How's this for a view on the way to work?

I travel across the countryside to work and the views are so amazing that I have to force myself to ignore them most days lest I accidentally miss a corner and end up rolling into a pile of cow muck in a farmers field. Unfortunately, the best views are at points on my car journey where the road is freakishly narrow and where there is no opportunity to park unless I risk pulling onto a farmers drive and blocking the trackers.

Strange really, as I am sure that there are panoramic parking spots every two minutes when you drive up hills in Europe. I certainly had plenty of brilliant photo opportunities when we holidayed in Majorca. But here, in the Midlands, on the edge of the Peak District, car parking spaces aren't deemed a necessity, gorgeous view or not. So the best, and only, parking spot I found gave me this picture on my route in today. Snow still peppering the ground, bright blue sky above. It was around 2 degrees Celsius. It was beautiful.

So do you take the time to look around and view the landscape? Share your photos here in the linky, or send them me via Twitter @ymummyreally or via the Facebook page, or even, goodness how many social options have we got, share them on Google+ ( discovered that yet?) on the Yummy Mummy? Really? page.

I'd love to see them.

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Wednesday, 13 March 2013

The Tooth Fairy: where does she live?

Both of my girls absolutely still believe in fairies.  How can they possibly not when the Tooth Fairy leaves the most gorgeous letter when she collects a tooth?

How can they not, when Tinkerbell tells us that every time someone says they don't believe in fairies, a fairy dies.

How can they not, when my hubby and I also believe in the magic.

The Tooth Fairy is doing a marvellous job.  The wonder and astonishment in my daughters eyes when she came running into our bedroom shouting "MUMMY, DADDY, LOOK!!!" will live with me forever. 

It's one of those moments you never want to forget.  

It's one of those moments that makes parenting so worth while.

Now I'm planning to make fairy houses at the bottom of the garden as soon as the weather finally turns.  After all, the fairies will appreciate any help they can get, since they are so busy collecting all the teeth.

I might even think about making a special bag for them to carry the teeth and those incredible heavy £1 coins in.  I'm sure the girls will enjoy that activity one afternoon.

What are your special moments of parenthood that you never want to forget?

Thursday, 7 March 2013

Self confidence: how to avoid losing yours

Ae you feeling a little low? Are you feeling like you are just not doing a good enough job, be it as a parent, in your career or in your relationship? Do you sometimes feel overwhelmed by it all, and wish that the train that is carrying you, chugging through life at pace, would just stop off for a lunch break and let you have some time to just take a breath, collect yourself, catch up?

I am struggling with those feelings at the moment. I don't feel like I am being the best mum, or the best yummiest wife, or doing the best job I could at work. But on reflection I realise that I am ignoring the positives: for example, my daughter gave me a beautiful piece of work she had completed in school today. She is now 6 years old, and in year 2 at infant school. Surely this is the positive feedback I need to pat myself on the back and give myself a gold star for "mummying"? Take a look below. What do you think?

Saturday, 2 March 2013

Out of the mouths of babes: March 2013

It's been a while since we indulged in a spot of giggling at the amazing things our young children say on this blog. It's not that mine haven't been saying all manner of amusing, inappropriate, embarrassing things. It's just that I haven't been organised enough to jot them down.

I feel an extra need to indulge in a spot of giggling at the moment as we are going through some personal family life challenges at the moment that are making life that little bit more emotional, raw and painful. But we are a family bursting with love, and it's for that reason that I know we can get through the challenges together. When it's less raw, and less likely to set me off crying again, I may well share; but until then I undertake the usual human trait of short-term avoidance tactics and instead indulge in the distraction of my daughters' naivety.

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