WHY GIFTING CAN BE THE GIFT THAT KEEPS ON GIVING…

It’s been a rough couple of weeks but as I promised, I am using that experience to really think about how I can be more socially conscious and how I can help. I’ve got a platform, it’s not a massive one but it’s there and it has the power to do some good. I know there’s a lot of debate around the role of ‘influencers’ and the service they offer brands and their followers and this is not a blog that’s about to unpick THAT particular bees nest but I think there’s a fairly easy way for influencers to do some good.

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DOES MOTHERHOOD REALLY NEED REBRANDING?

Recently, in the New York Times, Diksha Basu, commented that motherhood was in need of a rebrand saying that the trend, led by social media, was to sell motherhood to the masses as the ultimate sacrifice. “It’s no wonder that most of my friends have chosen not to have children and women are embracing the term “child-free” as if they are free of an illness,” Basu writes. “We already don’t get paid maternity leave, and child care and health care are expensive, there’s little state help, and now we’re telling each other that motherhood is pretty awful anyway?” Continue reading

WHY I’M SORRY ABOUT THAT POST…

What’s that overused, cliched saying? Sorry seems to be the hardest word? Well, the thing about cliches, is that they happen to be true. A couple of weeks ago, I posted THAT image on my squares equating camping to homelessness and, here I am to say, publicly and permanently, what a dick move that was on my part. Continue reading

WHY MY PND STILL HAUNTS ME FIVE YEARS LATER…

As much as I try not to think about it and as much as I try to dismiss it, I have to face up to a cold, hard truth. My post-natal depression following the birth of my eldest has affected my relationship with her and, almost five years on, it still does. Just writing that makes me want to weep but it’s true.

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WHAT MY DEPRESSION LOOKS LIKE…

If there’s one thing I know about depression, I know that it’s different for everyone. Those who suffer can certainly empathise and many of them will share symptoms but we all deal with depression differently and we respond differently to treatments. My depression is all my own, so what follows here is simply an account of my experience. I hope that in writing about it, it helps other people feel less ashamed, or less alone with their experiences. Continue reading

WHY I’M GETTING HOT AND BOTHERED OVER NUROFEN’S NEW GADGET…

Let’s be honest, kids are enough hard work when they are healthy, happy and not destroying your house from the inside out. When they’re sick, it’s even worse. Your life descends into the twilight zone – day and night are no longer defined by the rising and setting sun but instead by those snatches of sleep you grab somewhere between giving them medicine and them vomiting from fever. Your darkened days are luminated only by the painful tones of the Teletubbies at 4am while your kid is covered in snot and literally, days can pass before you realise you haven’t showered or brushed your teeth.

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BLOGGER/FLOGGER? MY VERSION OF EVENTS….

I’m starting to make some money from my instagram account and this here blog. It’s much needed income. Jimmy and I are both freelancers and our cash flow is the biggest headache everyday of our lives so, when another income stream makes itself available, I’m going to take it. That being said, it’s tricky times over on the squares with all this ‘selling’ stuff so, in the interests of transparency, here’s what you can expect from me…in list form (because I’m too damn hot to make ordered sense out of my brain). Continue reading

LETTER TO MY TEENAGE SELF

I’ve recently done some work with Universal Pictures as part of their campaign to celebrate the release of the Lady Bird DVD starring Saoirse Ronan  (which is out today!) and one of the things they asked me to do was write a letter to my teenage self. I thought I’d share it in full here – you can also watch me reading it over on IGTV! Continue reading

THE PMT MYTH?

PMT and PMS has long been the subject of debate amongst women, medical professionals and certain brave men. There has been a lot of research into PMT/PMS (the terms are interchangeable) with little solid evidence to provide an acceptable conclusion. What is clear is that many women, every month, are struggling seriously with their mental states in the lead up to their period. Continue reading

THE SKINNY ON SKIN-TAGS

I know skin tags aren’t the sexiest of topics for a blog, but this is a parenting blog after all; we lost sexy somewhere between battered vaginas and poo stains. Let’s face it: pregnancy has been fetishised since the dawn of time, but if you’ve actually done it you’ll know it’s about as sexy as Boris Johnson in a pair of edible panties.  The varicose veins, the heavy labia, the dripping pelvic floor, the burgeoning, leaking boobs straining translucently through a knackered old feeding bra and branded with a road map of blue veins are not sexy. Growing a human may be bad-ass, but it’s rarely sexy. Continue reading

WHAT WE CAN TEACH OUR KIDS ABOUT MENTAL HEALTH…

I don’t know if I’ve mentioned it but next week I’m doing five hot yoga sessions in one day to raise awareness around maternal mental health. I decided to do it because I suffered post-natal depression after the birth of my first baby and it’s so important to me that we do everything we can’t to normalise this stuff so that people feel they can ask for help. What I didn’t bank on was being faced, once again, with my own mental health issues. I thought I had it under control, I thought I was fine. Continue reading

WHY SOME MOTHERS REGRET HAVING KIDS (AND THAT’S OK)…

Today I was asked whether I was a regretful mother. I can understand why people would think that. I do spend a lot of time banging on about how shit motherhood can be but that’s the difference. I don’t regret becoming a mother – I don’t regret having kids – but I do resent the job of motherhood at times and yes, I regret that this is the situation I find myself in. I regret that I’ve made a choice that society doesn’t support me in.  Continue reading

WHY MAMA SAYS STOP…

For the last week, I have been paralysed with illness. If I’m honest, I haven’t been well for a few weeks but like every other mother, I just kept going. I’d feel run down and tired and in response, I might cancel a night out then, the next day, I’d get up and keep going at a million miles an hour. In between I’d pop a few Paracetamol and Ibruprofen to keep the headaches at bay. I drank my body-weight in water, did yoga when I could and ate my vegetables. I figured that would be enough to keep me going. It wasn’t. Continue reading

THE BODY BLOG I’VE BEEN WORRIED ABOUT POSTING…

I’ve been writing this blog for three months. At least. It’s not that the words have been hard to find; it’s more that the message is a tricky, complex one. Communicating it leaves me open to criticism (which I’m totally fine with) but it also leaves me open to upsetting people I know and love (which I’m totally NOT fine with). Continue reading

WHY ‘M’ IS NOT JUST FOR MOTHER…

Happy Mother’s Day people. Hope you’re all being spoiled silly and left to languish in bed for as long as you damn well please. I hope that you’ll have a chance to read a newspaper from front to back and drink a whole cup of tea while it’s still hot. I hope the house is spotless, the beds are made and the loo seats are all clean and down. I hope you can do whatever you like but (and this may seem a little ironic) I really hope that you can spend some time on Mothers Day not being a mum; I hope you can spend some time just being you because when it comes down to it, being a mum is what you are, not who you are.  Continue reading

WHY NOT-DRINKING IS THE BIGGER PROBLEM…

Today I was asked to be part of a discussion on BBC 5 Live about the #wineoclock phenomenon and motherhood and drinking. The lovely Amy from Surviving Motherhood asked me to fill in for her because she was sick. The question posed at the top of the show was, “Is #wineoclock damaging or just a bit of fun?” Sorry BBC, but you’re missing the point. Continue reading

WHY IT’S TIME TO TALK…

When I was 27 years old I experience my first episode of depression. It floored me. It was a mental whirlwind that left me disoriented in its wake. No one in my family had suffered from any mental health issues, at least openly, and while I navigated the journey, I felt exposed, isolated, lost and frankly, a little disgusted with myself. Why couldn’t I cope? What the hell did I have to feel so down about? Wasn’t everything pretty damn sweet in my life? Continue reading

GETTING HOT FOR MENTAL HEALTH…

I’ve previously written about my experiences with depression and post-natal depression. I don’t seem to have that filter that makes me embarrassed or ashamed to admit that, occasionally, I lose my mental shit and need help to pick up the pieces. I’m not boasting – it’s not always a good thing. Trust me, dropping the old ‘depression-admission’ thing can be a bit of a conversation killer but it’s important that we change that. It’s important that we can talk about our own mental health struggles without people backing away slowly and/or making an abrupt and awkward u-turn in the conversation. Continue reading

DON’T YUCK MY YUM…

I love my husband but it’s not very often that he says something that inspires a whole blog…until recently. While we were busy preparing for Christmas last month, he was busy in the kitchen making his own butter. I shit you not. He’d ‘homemade’ mince pies, but wanted to see just how ‘homemade’ he could get them so, he made his own butter.  Continue reading

WHY WE SHOULDN’T LOSE OUR SHIT OVER SCHOOLS…

So, it’s done. If your offspring was born between September 1 2013 and August 31 2013 you’ll have just submitted your school applications at the beginning of this week. Most of you, I’m sure will have been a shit tonne more organised that Team Sims were and perhaps have got your applications in a lot earlier. Whatever your approach to getting your kid into an establishment of education…it’s now signed, sealed and soon to be delivered. Continue reading

THE BODY BLOG I’VE BEEN WORRIED ABOUT POSTING…

I’ve been writing this blog for three months. At least. It’s not that the words have been hard to find; it’s more that the message is a tricky, complex one. Communicating it leaves me open to criticism (which I’m totally fine with) but it also leaves me open to upsetting people I know and love (which I’m totally NOT fine with). Continue reading

HOW I’M GETTING MORE SHIT DONE THIS YEAR…

I have one resolution for 2018 – be more productive. I want to waste less time, spend more time doing healthy stuff with my brain and body, read more books, write more blogs, do more yoga and be a better mother. Ok, ok…I know that sounds like a lot but actually, if I’ve narrowed down a few easy tips and tricks to help me be more productive and ultimately make more time for that shit I listed above.  Continue reading

DON’T CALL THE MIDWIFE, WRITE TO HER…

It’s that post-Christmas pit stop; that bit between going back to work and actually feeling like you’ve recovered. The last cracker may have been pulled, the last Bailey’s necked and the last of that damn turkey curry is gone (finally) but there’s still some Christmas housekeeping that needs to be done. Continue reading

WHAT MUMS NEED FROM LOVE…

Love is a tricky thing. It has so many faces – sure it’s spiky and fizzy at first and then it becomes exclusive, deep, powerful. After a while, it becomes more homely, more casual – more like a favourite pair of joggers than a pair of erection-inducing heels. Of course, there are still erections…just not as many of them. The point is, what love feels like changes all the time but how you show love should remain the same, all the time. Continue reading

HOW I’M DEALING WITH THE CHRISTMAS COME DOWN…

Not so sound too bah humbug about the whole thing, but thank FUCK that’s over for another year. I love the idea of Christmas. As it approaches, I’m overcome with a yearning to wear oversized knitwear, hunker down in front of open fires, clutch a glass of Malbec and snuggle with my perfect looking family, perhaps in matching pyjamas (underneath the aforementioned chunky knit). Continue reading

WHY WE ALL NEED TO PLAY THE GAME…

As many of you who follow me on Instagram will know, last weekend I encountered some of the basest, most disgusting behaviour from another human being. A trip to Billie’s Saturday morning football class is one that will go down in the annals of Sims’ history for all the wrong reasons. But, almost a week on, I’m starting to realise there’s something good, no great, to come out of it too. Continue reading

WHAT THE CHRISTMAS CRAZY LOOKS LIKE…

I’m not sure when it happened but I know that at some point, many years ago, Christmas was about nothing else other than love, lights, laughter and lots and lots of presents. Somewhere a long the line, the shiny, sparkly stuff has faded and it’s more about sky-high anxiety levels, constant cleaning and an ever-present feeling of well, disappointment. Continue reading

WHY I’M FOCUSSING ON BODY POSITI’FIT’Y

Ok – that headline sounded way better in my head and now that I’ve seen it written down, it makes me cringe but I’m running with it because you know I love a pun, even a bad one. So, yes, the #bodypositivity movement has been wonderful and I’m so inspired by the likes of Nat over on Style Me Sunday and the Body Posi Panda for everything they are doing to encourage us all to embrace our bodies. That being said, I don’t want to forget about fitness and health in all this. Continue reading

WHY THE SWEDISH MADE ME CRY…

A couple of weeks ago, I was lucky enough to be invited to Stockholm by Baby Bjorn. They invited myself and my family out for a few days to be part of their upcoming campaign, but also to investigate parenting the Swedish way. The Swedes, and much of Scandinavia, have long been held aloft as parental paradigms to be emulated and I was interested to get the skinny on the Scandi way of parenting. Continue reading

WHY MY DAUGHTER IS A DICK…SOMETIMES

If you’ve been reading this blog for a while, you’ll know two things:

  1. I’m shit at writing regularly. I’m in the process of rectifying this.
  2. My approach to life, every day and every way is this: just don’t be a dick…

…which is why what my daughter is doing at the moment is just not ok.

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MY DAUGHTER’S A RAGE MONSTER AND ITS ALL MY FAULT…

There’s nothing more terrifying that having your own worst traits staring back at you through the words, actions, facial expressions of your children. It’s inevitable, but that doesn’t make the punch in the emotional gut any less painful. It’s even harder to take when someone else has to point out that maybe, just maybe, your daughter’s behaviour is a reaction to your own crappy ways of dealing with things. Ouch.  Continue reading

WHY I’M STARTING TO KICK MY OWN ASS…

It is a fact universally acknowledged that, as mums, we have the perfect excuse to avoid exercise and getting healthy. I mean, no one is busier than a mum, right? No one is more tired than a mum and anyway, don’t we spend all day running around after the kids? I mean, if that’s not cardio then I don’t know what is. And OK, I may eat oven chips and fish fingers for dinner but it’s only half a fish finger because, you know, I only ate the left overs so it doesn’t count, right?  Continue reading

I DON’T KNOW MUCH ABOUT MARRIAGE BUT…

Remember those fairy tale movies we all saw which ended with a beautiful princess-to-be walking down the aisle to marry her prince? Remember how, despite our niggling voice of realism, we all kind of looked forward to the day when we would get our own fairytale? I mean however your vision of your fairytale looked, the end result was still the same. We all (more or less) thought we’d end up marrying the love of our life and, as the old saying goes, live happily ever after. Continue reading

CAMP BESTIVAL: THE BEST OF TIMES AND THE WORST OF TIMES

Camp Bestival is, hands down, the best festival you can go to if you want to take kids. As someone who use to tour with bands married to someone who still tours with bands, we generally avoid festivals for ‘fun’ like the plague. It’s the ultimate bus man’s holiday but this year we decided to take the plunge and give it a shot. It didn’t all go to plan but, much like childbirth, I’m already forgetting the pain and remember nothing but an amazing experience that I’m already looking forward to doing again next year. Continue reading

WHY I GOT NAKED AND TOOK PICTURES (AND YOU SHOULD TOO)…

A few weeks ago I was invited to Nat Lee’s (Style Me Sunday) Warrior Woman event. Apart from the fact that Nat is a good friend and I would pretty much walk over hot coals wearing a catsuit of rusty nails for her if she asked me too (now THAT would be an instagram shot if I ever saw one), the point of Warrior Woman is so vitally important that I would have done it even if I though she was a total wankpuffin. The fact that she isn’t just makes it all that more delicious. Continue reading

WHY I NEED SHIT TV IN MY LIFE

I’m a recent convert to Love Island. In fact, it would be more accurate to say I have become obsessed. I’m not going to defend it in any way. I’ve read an article trying to convince us that it’s an interesting dissection of society today and another article that even tried to call it the most feminist show in recent years. That’s all bollocks. It’s mind-numbingly, soul-achingly bad; it’s worse than The Real Housewives and it’s worse than Keeping Up With The Kardashians but it’s become as necessary to me and my mental wellbeing as the the tiny little pill I take each day to stave off depression. That’s a pretty big claim, right? I know. I’ve told myself a million times not to exaggerate but bear with me because if you’re a mum, you’ll understand why I NEED shit TV in my life.  Continue reading

NEW MUMS JUST NEED YOU TO DO ONE THING…

It’s no secret that I found the transition to motherhood hard. I’ve banged on and on about it in the hope that honestly recounting my experience may chime with other mothers struggling and perhaps offer them a virtual life raft to hold on to. After all that’s why I started the blog and why I still write it because it’s still necessary. Despite all our efforts to dispel the myths surrounding motherhood, they still exist. New mothers (and old mothers) are still finding themselves lost in a haze of breast pumps, maternity pads and wailing babies.  Continue reading

MY RELATIONSHIP WITH BOOZE…WHAT’S NEW

Over two months ago I posted the most personal blog yet detailing my relationship with booze and the negative impact it was having on my life, my relationship, my children, my bank balance. The response to the blog was overwhelming. I received hundreds of emails, literally (I stopped counting after 230) from other women (and a few men). All of them called me brave (or ‘brace’ thanks to auto-correct), some thanked me for writing their story, some were grateful that I’d held a mirror up to their own drinking habits, some just wanted to say, “Me too. I’m here.” None, zero, absolutely not one of the emails was negative.  Continue reading

WHY FAMILY HOLIDAYS DON’T HAVE TO BE ABOUT THE KIDS…

Think about this: instead of looking for ‘family friendly’ holidays, why aren’t we searching for ‘parent friendly’ holidays? I mean, when you think about it, that’s what we’re all looking for but because we’re all so used to putting the small people first, we forget all about that. Kids Clubs are great – essential even – but where, in those ‘family friendly’ holiday packages – is the focus on the parents?  Continue reading

THINGS YOU NEVER KNEW ABOUT SOLO PARENTING…

I don’t know if you know or not, but my husband is away a lot. I try not to shout about it too much….yeah right. I’m always banging on about being a bloody ‘tour widow’ and left alone with two small children and a job and blah blah blah. I’m not one for keeping my whingeing to myself. A misery shared on social media is a misery made bearable in my book. Right or wrong, oftentimes Instagram saves my sanity. Continue reading

WHY EVERYTHING CHANGES IN YOUR THIRTIES…

It’s easy to fall into the icky-sticky trap of believing that you’ve got your shit together once you get to your thirties. It’s true that you may feel more comfortable in your own skin (hopefully), you may give less fucks about what other people think of you and hopefully you’ll be earning decent enough money to afford you some of the finer things in life  – that’s all good stuff. But, it’s also possible that your thirties will also throw you some curve-balls. Continue reading