It's my life, but not as I knew it!

Posts tagged ‘parents’

Act With Kindness

The Fred Rogers’ quote “When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, ‘Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping'” has been used often to try to help with recent global events. I know I have spoken to Biscuit and Cracker about this, in an attempt to stop them being so scared by the news images which have tragically become part of our everyday lives.

Rest assured, those helpers are always there; whether that’s our amazing emergency services, individual helpers who go over and above to help others or whole communities coming together to provide support/shelter/etc. Those helpers are there after terrorist incidents, natural disasters or events like the Grenfell House fire. They are both visible and working behind the scenes (let’s not forget our 999 call handlers who got Police to the London Bridge area in order to neutralise the terrorists within 8 minutes of the call to them). But can we all be helpers?

Of course we can. I don’t mean that we should all metaphorically don capes and throw ourselves in to potentially dangerous situations, but knowing that we can all help in our own way. We can be kind to people. We can treat them with respect. Rob and I are raising Biscuit and Cracker to be tolerant, to listen to other people’s views and to respect them (VERY different from agreeing with them btw), by understanding that if it doesn’t directly impact on you then your opinion is limited and by being kind. This means remembering that words have a huge impact, that your actions/inactions can hurt people, and that empathy is one of the most vitally important skills you can ever use.

I am always honest with Biscuit and Cracker with what’s going on in the world (it’s their world too after all). They are aware of who Donald Trump, Vladimir Putin and Jeremy Hunt are and what their views are (if you’re wondering; “he’s a silly man who doesn’t like people who have different colour skin than him”, “he’s mean as he doesn’t think boys and boys and girls and girls should get married” and “he’s a stinky poo-poo head because he doesn’t think paramedics and nurses are important and do a brilliant job” respectively). I admit I struggled watching the DUP politicians (with their anti-LGBTQ, anti-choice stance) being given such airtime on TV and such power in Westminster. I respect that they have different views to me, but I severely dislike their damning words regarding things which are so personal and their judgments on people (nothing wrong with the saying “if you’ve got nothing nice to say, don’t say anything at all”). There’s no kindness in what they say.

One final thought, before my random ramblings come to an end (thank you for putting up with a slightly different post from Biscuit and Cracker today); be kind to yourself. Sometimes we find it easier to be kind to others, but we shouldn’t leave ourselves out of that.

Look after yourselves and I hope to see you again soon.









Getting Out and About

I have made no secret of my love of babywearing. For me, there is no nicer (or easier) way of getting out with your little one. You can cross roads at a normal place, climb up and down stairs, get on buses/trains/tubes with perfect ease and be able to walk down the most crowded of shopping streets knowing your little bundle is safe and sound. They are lovely and warm (as are you), get a good view of what’s going on around them and get to snuggle into you when it all gets a bit much.

This love does not mean I don’t use a buggy. In fact, having twins means that I appreciate my double buggy so much. I have tandem worn the twins when they were a bit smaller, but now they are bigger and my back is not up to it. When I go out by myself, or if we are doing a long walk or lots of shopping we use our buggy.

There are absolutely hundreds of designs and styles of prams, something  that may seem overwhelming to first time parents. Thinking about what you need it for will help narrow down the field to a much more manageable number. How many children do you need it for? (Two children of different ages? Twins? Triplets? Quads?!?!). Do you need it from birth or will you be using it for older babies and children? Do you want a travel system (one compatible with a car seat) or not? How big is your car boot, and how much does the buggy fold up? Will you be using it on city streets or for woodland walks?

We knew we needed a buggy for twins, from newborn. We wanted one compatible with car seats but we weren’t overly fussy about how it folded up as we live in Central London and don’t have a car. This also meant that we did not need a multi-terrain pram to cope with off-road buggying, just something to withstand bumps in the pavement.

At first we went for the iCandy Peach Blossom in tomato red. When the twins were little this seemed the perfect pram. The bassinets were large enough that they slept comfortably in them and it easily fitted on car seats for trips to the grandparents. It was easy to push and narrow enough to fit through all doorways and shop aisles. We had a slight (!) issue with the handle bar coming apart, but this was easily sorted and was under warranty. I fell out of love with it when we started using the seats though. The bottom seat was so out-of-the-way that the twin put in there could not see at all, meaning they either got bored and went to sleep or they got fed up and screamed until we took them out and carried them. It is also a smaller seat on the bottom than on the top so it would have probably ended up with Biscuit constantly down there as Cracker is the bigger of the two. I do however maintain that the iCandy would be good for children of different ages; if you have one who happily walks about everywhere but would need the buggy when they got tired then this is a sturdy option.

I do not have children of different ages so we looked again for a double buggy. We had to go for an inline style as we not only live in London which is definitely not designed for side-by-side, tandem buggies, but we also live in flats and they would not fit easily in our life or through our front door. Having experienced our personal issues with inline buggies designed like the iCandy (and the Phil and Teds too for example) I wanted a buggy with stadium seating, meaning the child in the seat closest to the parent is the highest of the two.

We chose a Baby Jogger City Select. This offers a wide variety of seating arrangements including both parent-facing, both facing out and facing each other, and that’s without throwing the bassinet and the car seat options into the mix too. The basket is accessible from all sides and is absolutely massive. It folds very easily and, once you remove the wheels and lay them down flat too, will fit into a relatively small car boot. Yes, it is quite heavy to push, especially with about 25kg of twins in there, and very long but I find it easy to manoeuvre and love having a hand-brake on the side instead of having to faff around reaching for one underneath. If you push it very fast then the front wheels tend to wobble and it lives up to it’s name of being a city select- this buggy is not for hills and dale.

My advice is to make sure you know what sort of buggy you’d be interested in and go to a shop or to a baby show and try them out. Ask other mums and look for reviews which may flag up issues for older children that you wouldn’t even be considering yet. Find a buggy that suits you, your baby, your lifestyle and your nappy bag!! Or give up on all that and get yourself a nice, comfortable sling! 😉

However you do it, the most important thing is just to get out and about. Get some fresh air, visit some people, do some window shopping, stop yourself getting cabin fever and breathe!