Friday, 9 August 2013

The Fear Of The Dummy

During one of my NCT classes, Chris and I were clearly the couple standing on the side of the room of 'no dummies' leading the dummy snobs all the way.  So at three months old watching Poppy happily sucking away at one was quite a shock.

I had a real thing about it, mostly embarrassment.  Poppy was only allowed a clear dummy none of those bright colourful patterned ones and was only able to use it at certain times.  It came about because all she wanted to do was suck.  Literally! Time and time again, I found myself breast feeding for hours at a time, only for Poppy to start crying each time I pulled her away because she was clearly being comforted.  I can't remember whose idea it was,  but we tried giving her one and it was like magic.  Breast feeding times were cut down so much and Poppy seemed so much happier.

Poppy was the first of just two of her pals that regularly had a dummy.  I always found I needed to justify it (mostly to myself) why she had one.  No one ever said anything but I definitely felt judged.  One of the many things that the world of motherhood does to you.

Poppy is currently 16 months old and still uses her dummy. (I can hear the gasp from your voice!)  We are lucky that it has only ever been a day time thing and have never had to use it at night.  She uses it for her day time naps so I've never pushed to drop it as I know that these naps will eventually drop and so will the dummy.  So what happens next, will she be one of those four year olds that has it hanging out of their mouth whilst talking like a baby? Or maybe the clear discreet style will change to Peppa Pig and oink.  Most likely a big fat no to both of those examples but thankfully I no longer care.  We still use our discretion tightly with the dummy and always will.  But it definitely has taught me a lesson of not to judge those parents that use them.

Nap Time With Her Pals

Breast Feeding Love it or Hate it

Where do you start! My blog alone could be just about this topic.  Firstly I have to say that I am really not bothered how other mums feed their babies.  Breast feeding, express or formula... nothing to do with me.  This post is my journey.

Having big boobs myself the thought of breast feeding was terrifying and I was definitely not a fan of the thought of wapping my baps out in public.  But the further into my pregnancy I got, the more I hoped I could feed her.  I was so lucky that she and I took to it like duck to water.  Almost immediately after giving birth she latched on and fed away, I didn't even have to do anything.

I tried giving her a expressed bottle around two months but she had no interest at all.  As the months wore on I found breast feeding getting harder and harder.  I felt Poppy was scrambling all the time as if she couldn't get enough.  But as the NHS guidelines suggest six months, that's what I wanted to do.  I know now that sounds ridiculous, but I think there is a lot of pressure for first time mums and that's how I felt.  So at five months, I tried the bottle again but this time we tried formula milk.  Just like the weaning process she didn't bat an eyelid what she was drinking.  She downed seven ounces in a few moments.  I knew straight away she was ready to come off the boob.  In less than two weeks she was off.  I couldn't believe it and she was drinking way more than ever before.  I continued to express over the next couple of weeks and thankfully finished breast feeding without any issues.

I did feel a huge sense of guilt about giving Poppy formula milk before she was six months old.  I wonder if this was connected with my hormones as I was in the process of stopping breast feeding which I did feel a sense of sadness about.  But when I did, I was so glad that I made that choice.  Now if I think about this, I feel really cross with myself because its easy to forget the fact that she had five months exclusive and that itself is a wonderful thing.  If I'm ever lucky to breast feed again I certainly won't be thinking about the six month guideline and if I want to stop for me or the baby, I certainly won't let society influence me.

Two day old Poppy and a rarely seen me in glasses!

Friday, 2 August 2013

Cupcake Course

As a new baker and armed with my fresh new Mary Berry cook books (thanks Chris!)  I really wanted to learn how to ice cupcakes.  Not the ones with the runny icing dripping down the cases you make when you are five with your mum, but the swirly full on butter icing cupcakes that make you drool at the mouth.

My course was two hours long and took place with 59 other people in the hottest room in the world.  Despite what this sounds like, I found it really fun and useful.  I had already purchased some Wilton nozzles before hand and had some practice making them for parties I've hosted recently, but I needed someone to show me.  The course was great and I learnt different techniques including a 'rose' and general 'swirly' icing.  I also had practice in making different cupcake toppers.  It's definitely given me the confidence to carry on making them.  Just need to make sure I have someone else to eat them! Bloody diet!


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