All posts filed under: Parenting

Four great children’s books

What makes a great children’s book? To me, it needs beautiful illustrations, an engaging story, fantastical facts and interactive activities. I picked up the following four books recently which have all of the above and they have been on high rotation with the girls lately… “Women who Dared: 52 Stories of Fearless Daredevils, adventurers & rebels”  This one had me at the title. It’s the second book I’ve bought for the girls about women who have dared to achieve their dreams. We haven’t gotten through it yet, but we have loved reading stories of strong and courageous women, and the illustrations are just lovely. Day of the Dinosaurs My daughters are obsessed with dinsaurs, thanks in part to watching marathon sessions of Dinosaur Train whilst I clean the house, or put baby to sleep. I love how this book is interactive, jam-packed with facts and beautifully illustrated. Nature’s Day: Out and About To be honest, I picked this one up because of the pretty front cover. Don’t judge a book by its cover? I’d have …

Inspiring kids’ learning spaces

Even if one is not homeschooling their children, having a “learning nook” can be useful. And I say “nook” because let’s face it; not everyone has the luxury of having a separate room just for the kids. Even a spare wall in the house can suffice, with various shelving systems like the first one below acting as storage for the kids’ craft supplies, books and toys. Keeping it playful makes it appealing for the kids as well, rather than taking it too seriously and “suitable for the minimalist/boho/modern/california cool (whatever that means) aesthetic of my home”. It’s a space for kids; it should look like one. Bright pops of colour, fun wallpaper, chalkboard walls, cute (and educational) posters and whimsical toys can really make the space appealing and beautiful. Also, it need not be very expensive, because #IKEA and thrifting. I find that exploring second hand stores, op shops and flea markets yield beautiful and unique toys and educational material. Take a look at our favourites below… *Click images for links Featured image via Pencil …

The List: Ethical kid’s clothing

Now that my kids are exiting the toddler years (well, two of them anyway), finding ethical kids clothing that is affordable is becoming somewhat of a task. Speaking to my cousin recently, she also expressed difficulty in finding ethically made clothing for children aged 5-15. It can be difficult to pass up the $5 t-shirt in Kmart, especially when kids seem to get through so many clothes because they grow 10 cm every three months or get grass stains on the knees of all jeans or food stains that just won’t come off. Is it worth spending a little more on ethically made clothing for kids? I think it is. Non-organic cotton fabrics, and other synthetically produced clothing contain toxins (given the chemicals they are treated with) that can seep into the wearer’s skin. I also think that if we teach our children to wear less but cherish and value their clothing from a young age, this will teach them good values that they can carry into adulthood. I know, I know. These days it …

A generous baby shower

I’ve always had two thoughts and emotions about baby showers. I’ve felt somewhat uneasy about them, what with the fanfare, extravagance that seems to be the trend these days and potentially lots of unwanted gifts, but I’ve also loved the concept of gathering a budding mother’s closest female friends and family to initiate her into motherhood- or if it’s not for a first baby, having them around to share wisdoms, celebrate the start of new life and simply to shower her with love.  Our dear friend Sana was expecting her first baby (she’s since given birth) and asked me to aid her in running a flower crown workshop for her baby shower. The day focussed on giving, generosity and creating beauty- a perfect focus for celebrating a woman on the cusp of motherhood, methinks.  Read on to be inspired by Sana’s baby shower with a difference… What was the inspiration behind organising this event? Once pregnant, a few of my friends expressed interest in assisting to host a baby shower for me. I don’t mind …

A simple health trick

Hello everyone! I have been absent for a few months around here. What with Ramadan, a new baby and the general demands of life with three kids, friends and family; things have been busy. More than this though, I have been struggling to be motivated to do anything outside of just getting through each day. Writing seemed like an insurmountable task that I simply could not be bothered for. I had no inspiration and just felt bogged down from the daily grind. In the past few weeks, I came down with a nasty viral infection which took some time for me to recover from and was really a reminder that I needed to take proper care of myself first and foremost. I think this is true of any mother, that we constantly place ourselves last. That we don’t take simple steps to ensure that our own health is sound. We know the oft repeated phrase, “if mum doesn’t look after herself she can’t look after anyone”, but I think that mostly, it’s something we just …

High-tech bassinets are totally a thing now

For those of us who have kids, think back to your most difficult child, the one you brought home from the hospital terrified of because from DAY ONE they wouldn’t sleep anywhere else but on your chest. Or in your arms. Or only in the car. Or they didn’t sleep at all. If you were told back then that there was a bassinet that would: strap your child in safely detect when your baby moved and ROCK BABY GENTLY “chooses” which motion your baby likes best play soothing white noise simulate the sensation of a car how quickly would you throw your screaming baby into one? Half a second it’d take methinks. Anything to get some blessed sleep. Recently, one ultra high-tech bassinet, developed with MIT engineers (that’s what you need to get your baby to sleep people, a team of MIT ENGINEERS) has hit the market and another has been made by Ford. The car company. Yes. A car company has made a bassinet that moves your baby from side to side in a motion …

Conversations with kids

Kids say the most hilarious things, and I wish I wrote down some of the things my own kids say more often. Here are a few things my little ones have spilled recently… When I came back from the hospital and J said to me: “Mum, why do you still have a baby in your tummy?” Me: “Umm… there’s no baby in there J. My tummy is just going to take some time to return to normal.” J: “Oh, ok. I don’t like it like that. It needs to be flat again!” Me: *tears streaming down my face… “This tummy stretched to carry all three of you!!” When asking why her 16 year-old uncle isn’t married yet… J: “Why isn’t Emmi (short for ‘Amja’ or ‘uncle’ in Turkish) married yet?” Me: “Because he is too young J, he’s still in school…” J: “Oh, so he can get married in the school holidays…” A few weeks ago she suddenly piped up with… “An-ne (or mum), I want to be exactly like you when I’m older…” Me: “awwww …

Postpartum reflections

I’ve been following Australian actress Teresa Palmer on Instagram lately, and have been reading her posts over on her blog Your Zen Mama. She had her second baby just before I had my third, and she has been sharing her weekly postpartum reflections. I’ve really enjoyed reading them, it reminds me that I’m not the only one going through this at the moment. Her honesty is refreshing and the detail she goes into with her reflections is also actually really helpful. Inspired by her posts, I’ve decided to put a reflection of my own together, but I will not be doing this weekly because I HAVE THREE KIDS. It’s also taken me four and a half weeks (no, I can’t believe it’s been over a month since I gave birth) to get this down because I’ve been stumbling around in a mind-fog and drowning in an endless cycle of nappy changes, tantrums, sibling rivalry and swaddling wraps… So here goes: The Labour I’m not going to give y’all a recount of my labour in detail, because, …

I am not enough…and that’s ok

Practically everyday at some point, the thought will cross my mind that, “I am not enough…” that “I don’t know enough…” or that “I am not smart/knowledgable/wise/patient enough…” That I’m not doing enough outside of the children. That my ‘career’ is not progressing, that I’m not doing enough for the community, that I don’t maintain connections with my friends enough, that I’m not helpful enough for my parents, that I’m not showing my care and concern for my husband enough… ETCETERA. I worry that I don’t do enough for the children. That I don’t spend enough quality time with them, or that I don’t organise enough activities for them, or teach them enough (I want to homeschool them, but haven’t really started doing anything homeschool-y yet). I face up to the gaping holes in my knowledge and wonder how on earth I am even going to homeschool my kids. And with a third on the way, I wonder how I’ll find the time to organise a homeschooling curriculum for them, or even lessons to do …

What I’ve packed in my hospital bag

With two weeks to go till my due date, I finally put my hospital bag together, and guess what? It’s still missing some essentials. Here is what I’ve been able to throw in there for now… For me… Pretty bathrobe Cheap pyjamas because they will certainly go through a lot in the first few days Clothing that doesn’t look like pyjamas but feels as comfy as pyjamas so that when people visit I look somewhat presentable. Black stripe pants and top. Organic Maternity singlet Slippers Lush shampoo, conditioner, body wash and body lotion A big fluffy towel Going home clothes Missing from bag… cheap underwear Tom Organic Maternity pads Weleda cream For baby…  Muslin wraps Dwell studio blanket, because the hospital gets cold Two body suits Beanie and mittens Bubba blue organic towel Bubba blue organic face washers Little Innoscents Wipes Tooshies by Tom Organic Nappies. I can’t believe how tiny they are! Missing from bag… Gaia skin care baby starter pack I am feeling that mix of emotions that is inevitable at this phase of pregnancy. …