Watch Me Grow! – Month Two

watch me grow banner Watch Me Grow!   Month Two

 

By now, your little one will be able to recognize the most important people in her life – her parents! You’ll notice that she responds differently to you than to other people. And you’ll be rewarded for all the hard work you put in as a parent by the heart-tugging smiles your baby produces.

archie and julie 2 Watch Me Grow!   Month Two

Archie

At around two months, her eyesight is improving and she’ll be able to focus with both eyes and track objects in her field of vision. noahs ark mobile Watch Me Grow!   Month Two

We bought this wooden mobile for Archie’s nursery icon smile Watch Me Grow!   Month Two

It’s time to stimulate your little one’s senses, by hanging mobiles up in different shapes and designs, over her cot or on a playgym which she can lie under. Make sure any hanging mobiles are well out of reach of your baby! She’ll soon be trying to make a grab for these, although she won’t be able to hold onto any object for very long …

Your baby should be able to hold her head up now, as her neck muscles have developed rapidly. She’ll enjoy being bounced up and down whilst being held firmly and this is the perfect time to introduce her to new sights, sounds and experiences.

Babies learn through play, so forget the household chores for a while and spend time playing with her. Keep a selection of suitable toys, such as brightly coloured rattles, which she’ll learn to associate with both colour and sound. Don’t feel silly singing songs, nursery rhymes or just dancing round with your baby! These are the fun things that bond you and help create a loving family unit. Make sure your partner joins in too and also spends time alone with your little one. If one parent has to work full-time, sometimes it can feel as if they are missing out on so much – so start building special routines into your day which allows them to be a hands-on parent!

Find out more here .

Just love the smell of lavender …

lavender2 Just love the smell of lavender ...

….. and I’m surrounded by it at the moment with bunches of it hanging up to dry, ready to put into the hand-sewn drawer sachets and sweet hearts for the upcoming fayre and also to go onto our online store ……

sachets 2 Just love the smell of lavender ...

Just some of our scented sachets – rose petal,  home-made citrus potpourri & lavender

A good wife always knows her place!!

I found this piece hidden away in my scrapbooking box:  I think I was going to do a page on it but it still makes me smile/cringe/bristle when I read this …… “The Good Wife’s Guide”  published in Housekeeping Weekly, dated 13 May 1955 – clearly the era to have been the perfect housewife in!!

Have dinner ready. Plan ahead even the night before to have a delicious meal ready on time for his arrival.  This is a way of letting him know that you have been thinking of him and are concerned about his needs.  -never mind about yours!

*  Prepare yourself. Take fifteen minutes to rest so you’ll be refreshed when he arrives.  Touch up your makeup. Put a ribbon in your hair and be fresh-looking.  He has just been with a lot of work-people - you can guarantee he’ll come in & find you sitting down!!

*  Be a little gay and a little more interesting for him.  His boring day may need a lift and one of your duties is to provide iterr, so your totally mind-numbing day at home doing housework is just parr for the course…

1950s women A good wife always knows her place!!

“If I cover it with icing, he’ll never see the burnt bits”

*  Clear away the clutter. Make one last trip through the main part of the house just before your husband arrives -  simply shifting clutter from one place to another

*  Over the cooler months of the year, you should prepare and light a fire for him to unwind by.  Your husband will feel he has reached a haven of rest and order and it will give you a lift too.  After all, catering for his comfort will provide you with immense personal satisfaction - oh really?

*  Minimize all noise. At the time of his arrival, eliminate all noise of the washer, dryer or vacuum. Encourage the children to be quiet - try locking them in their rooms??

*   Be happy to see him. Greet him with a warm smile and show sincerity in your desire to please him - you know your place …

*  Listen to him. You may have a dozen important things to tell him but the moment of his arrival is not the time. Let him talk first – remember, his topics of conversation are more important than yours - really??

*  Make the evening his.  Never complain if he comes home late or goes out to dinner or other places of entertainment without you.  Instead, try to understand his world of strain and pressure and his very real need to be at home and relax - oh honey, I’m so glad you had a good time at the strip club

*  Your goal: try to make sure your home is a place of peace, order and tranquility where your husband can renew himself in body and spirit - 

*  Don’t greet him with complaints and problems - no, just listen to all of his

*  Don’t complain if he’s late home for dinner or even if he stays out at night. Count this as minor compared to what he might have gone through that day - that’s ok, honey, you stay out as often as you like

the good wifes guide A good wife always knows her place!!

Hi honey, I’m home!!!!!

 

*  Make him comfortable. Have him lean back in a comfortable chair or have him lie down in the bedroom. Have a cool or warm drink ready for himArrange his pillow and offer to take off his shoes. Speak in a low, soothing and pleasant voice - hm, he could get too used to this

*  Don’t ask him questions about his actions or question his judgement or integrity.  Remember, he is the master of the house and as such will always exercise his will with fairness and truthfulness.  You have no right to question him -  makes me wonder how we’ve been married for 33 years????

*  A good wife always knows her place” -  yeah, as an equal!

 

It’s hard to believe that just a few short years’ ago, this was how women were expected to behave as a married stay-at-home housewife,  whilst hubby brought home the bacon – which entitled him to rule the roost.  Thank god times have changed and most marriages are a partnership.  I know which decade I’m glad to be living in – how about you?

 

Archie’s First Birthday!

It’s hard to believe that our grandson Archie (Leah & Si’s son) turned one last week – where has this last year gone? My lovely daughter and son-in-law have embraced parenthood and are wonderful parents to a delightful little man, who changes each and every time we see him.  We celebrated his birthday at the weekend with a small family celebration.  Happy Birthday Archie icon smile Archies First Birthday!

 

archies birthday Archies First Birthday!

Archie, Leah & Si

Having a “crafty” fortnight off….

So, with two weeks off work, I’ve finally had time to do some of the things I’ve been looking forward to – namely, being able to leave my sewing machine out and get on with some sewing, among other things! Today’s a lot cooler so I’m getting stuck in; I’ve got all the doors open and sparrows keep flying into our convervatory, which is really strange but so cute! Perhaps they’re glad of the cooler weather?

I’ve been practicing some freehand machine quilting on a small batik quilt I’ve made; it’s quite a challenge after conventional stitching and the results aren’t always predictable but I’m enjoying it!

 

I’m just finishing off a quick summer skirt and then I’ll be cutting out another to stitch up over the next few days – so therapeutic icon smile Having a crafty fortnight off....

Over the last few months, I’ve also been busy knitting fingerless gloves from my own design, ready for the annual Bank Holiday Fayre which we raise funds at for our drama group. With only a month to go, I’m just about there with a few left to sew up.

I’ve adapted my pattern for adults, children (and also toddlers) and with your fingers being free, they’re easy to wear, enabling you to carry on with your normal day to day jobs without having your fingers bundled up, but also keeping your hands snug!

I’ve also been making some small note boards, which will also be ready for the Fayre and also online.

Just waiting for some new pinking shears to come, then I’ll be making some bunting to decorate our marquee – looking forward to using some of the lovely fabrics in my stash for this icon smile Having a crafty fortnight off....

Just some batches of lemon curd to make closer to the Fayre day and then we’re set to go – and I’m still finding time to work at my online business! (and look after my men)  Happy days icon smile Having a crafty fortnight off....

Guest Blog – Susan Webb – Oberon, NSW

 

I love reading about how others live, especially when their lives are in complete contrast to my own. I was delighted when  Susan Webb agreed to write a short blog piece for us, as Susan lives a TOTALLY different life to mine!  Susan writes about her life on their farm and talks about her late mother and their shared passion for horses.

 

“Let me introduce myself – my name is Susan Webb.  I’m a born and bred Aussie country girl.  My home town is Oberon in the Central Tablelands of NSW Australia, just over the hill from Sydney, but in many respects to those who live in the city, from a totally different world. I’m a mum and a daughter – to me, my mother was my best friend, fellow worker and just a great mate.  She was someone you could count on at any time.

 

My mother, Robin, was also a country girl – she was the youngest of six children, whose family moved from Sydney during the war to the Oberon District and became farmers. There are stories of Mum and two elder brothers who, whilst still at primary school, would either ride the horses to school or drive the horse and sulky.  I believe that mum was driving when one of the brothers fell out and the wheel went over him!! Didn’t affect him though! I just love seeing these uncles, they are so much fun and ready for a laugh.  In my mother’s day, the school had one teacher, one class, from Kindergarten to Year 6 (5yr old –> 12yr olds).

 

During her younger years, my mother was an extremely talented sportswomen, good at many things – I think it was being a left hander.

Growing up, mum loved horses and this love did not diminish – this led to my love of these great animals and one that I’m passing onto my three  girls.  My life has always had horses in it – we used them on the farm doing all mustering and just going out for a ride. There’s nothing better than to saddle a horse and to go for a ride.  As my husband commented on the other day, “Doesn’t matter how much pressure you are under, I feel so much better after riding”.

horse 1 Guest Blog   Susan Webb    Oberon, NSW

Robin with my sister at the Local Oberon Show, 1974.

Mum and I had a special relationship, as we would often travel together to horse events, often with me riding and mum officiating, either judging Dressage or as an EFA Delegate.  During all this time, mum always had time to watch and in her own quiet way, support my efforts.  Never once did she criticise me or show disappointment in the level that I was competing at.  It takes a special person to be like this!  One of the special days for me was seeing mum start riding competitively after many years’ break and come out of the dressage arena with the HUGEST smile and saying “Wow, that was fun!”

 

Farming families are very different – we often work, play and live together.  This is why mum was such a special lady.  We would be working on the farm outside all day and then at the end of the day go home and mum would continue to work – keeping the home and feeding us all. Mind you, not much has changed!!

 

You have to take your hat off to those who go back to study after a break.  Mum was one of these, with the paperwork and the need for record keeping to improve, she undertook an Associate Diploma in Farm Secretarial Studies by external studies.  This was done over a period of five years.  She and I graduated on the same day!

 

Unfortunately, Robin passed away nine years ago – but there’s not a day that goes by that I don’t have a wonderful memory/thought of her.  She was such a quiet but strong, determined woman, who was widely respected not only in our local community but throughout the Dressage and Eventing world of NSW. I take comments made to me – “gee, you’re getting more like your mother” as a fantastic complement.

horse 2 300x180 Guest Blog   Susan Webb    Oberon, NSW

Susan competing at the Oberon One Day Event, aged 13

 

I received a gift shortly after and the quote on it was “Mothers hold their children hands for a short time.  Children hold their Mother’s hearts always”

 

 

 

 

Thanks Susan for sharing some insights into your life and also for giving us a glimpse into the life you shared with your mother!

Susan raises chickens on their farm, something I wish we could do as I love to see chickens running around – and fresh eggs are out of this world!  Check out Susan’s site to get your free newsletters on raising your own chickens ….

Visit: www.chickensforhome.com

 

 

 

 

 

How to Wire a Plug

For everyone who’s ever worried about wiring a plug correctly, here’s a quick step-by-step video showing you how to do it!

Watch Me Grow! – Month One

watch me grow banner 300x88 Watch Me Grow!   Month One

newborn baby public domain pic 300x200 Watch Me Grow!   Month One

The long months of waiting are finally over and your baby has finally arrived! Congratulations! No doubt you’ve been surrounded by family and friends and you’ve lived in a bubble for a little while. Then, reality may hit you and you realise that now it’s just you and your baby, dependant on you for absolutely everything ….

Don’t panic! She may seem very fragile but babies are far more resilient than they look. You’ll need to support her head and neck, unless she’s lying down, as her head is heavy compared to the rest of her body. Her neck muscles haven’t developed enough to support her head; this will happen gradually over the next few weeks.

Babies cry – as you will soon find out! As a new parent, it can be frustrating to hear her cry and not know what to do.  You’ll soon discover that she’s probably hungry/needs her nappy changing/wants a cuddle.  By the time she’s been with you just a few days, you’ll be able to distinguish her different cries and be ready to satisfy her needs.

By the time your little one is a month old, she may be able to lift her head up for a little while when she’s lying on her tummy. Her eyesight has still not developed completely and at times, you’ll notice her eyes don’t co-ordinate properly. This is nothing to worry about and by the end of this first month, she should be able to focus on an object held about six inches from her face. This is usually YOUR face – so let her focus on you as much as you want. Bonding is good!

Dummies or not? It’s entirely your choice whether you give your baby a dummy. Many people are dead set against giving them before the birth, but are happy to let their little one have one if they’re unsettled.  It’s a matter of personal choice but babies are soothed by the sucking action and if it helps them sleep, then by all means try giving one. There are many wives’ tales going round about how you’ll never get your little one to give them up; well, in my experience, that’s a load of tosh. All mine had dummies and all three threw them away before they were three and I’ve yet to see a child going to school with a dummy!

You’ll probably receive loads of advice from well-meaning sources but at the end of the day, you know your baby better than anyone else and you should listen to the advice then decide what YOU want to do.  One thing I said to my daughters when their sons were born was – “babies don’t come with an instruction manual!” – you have to work it out together!  If you’re doing the best for your baby, then that is the best there is; your little one can’t and won’t judge you for the way you do things.   Basically, babies only need a handful of things to survive: food, warmth and LOVE.  It doesn’t matter to your baby if she sleeps in an expensive, top of the range cot or a budget moses basket; if she is loved, then she has everything she needs to thrive.

Look out for Watch Me Grow! Month Two ..….

 

 

 

 

Watch Me Grow! – our new monthly series

watch me grow banner 300x88 Watch Me Grow!   our new monthly series

 

 

We’ll be launching our new monthly article series “Watch Me Grow!” shortly.   From birth to your little one’s first birthday, we’ll show you how she’ll develop, what she’ll be doing and what to expect from those first few important months.   We’ll also include hints and tips which we’ve personally tried out ourselves.

Bringing your first baby into the world is such a special time but it also brings with it concerns and questions which all new parents experience.  Hopefully this series will help you through those first weeks and you’ll realise what a great job you’re doing as parents!

Head on over to the first month here …..
 

Angels on Bare Skin – a heavenly cleanser!

 

by Lush Cosmetics
Currently £6.25/100g- comes in a sealed re-cyclable plastic tub

angels on bare skin 225x300 Angels on Bare Skin   a heavenly cleanser! I’ve been using this lovely cleanser by Lush for a few months now, which has given me enough time to decide whether it does what it says on the tub.  Actually, I’m on my second tub so that says it all ……  Angels on Bare Skin is a solid product that turns into a cleansing milk with bits when you add warm water to it. I love the smell – mostly lavender with hints of earthy clay and almonds.

Lush’s blurb  on the pot: “evens out skin tone, reduces redness and improves the health and appearance of your skin – giving a natural healthy glow”.

 

 

 

Angels on Bare Skin actually looks like a pot of crumbled clay when you first open it but don’t let that put you off – sniff it and you’ll love it! angels product 225x300 Angels on Bare Skin   a heavenly cleanser! The kaolin absorbs grease and helps cleanse your skin thoroughly and the lavender flowers not only add a beautiful fragrance, they are astringent too.  I’ve always preferred cleansers which you apply to your skin with cotton wool pads, so using this on a regular basis is a first for me – but I love it!  My skin feels soft and fresh and I admit to opening the pot when I’m in the bathroom just to smell it, I love it that much!!

To use, simply pull off a small amount of the cleanser and roll it into the palm of your hand.  Add warm water and gently knead, then rub over your face, adding more water if necessary.  Massage the cleanser into your pores, enjoy the heavenly smell, then rinse off and voila! Your skin will be clean, soft and glowing.

 

 

I love the fact that Lush use natural ingredients in their products;  the ingredients for Angels are: ground almonds, glycerine, kaolin, water, lavender oil, rose absolute, chamomile Blue Oil, Tagetes oil, benzoin resinoid, lavender flowers, limonene, linalool (these two occur naturally in essential oils).  It’s a sad fact that the majority of our beauty products these days contain harmful additives, particularly the more expensive well-known brand names, so if you’re fed up of putting chemicals onto your skin, take a look at what Lush have to offer.  Their online service is second to none and you can request samples of products too!

My other much-loved Lush goodie  is Ocean Salt which I’ll be doing a review on shortly; combining Angels with an equal amount of Ocean Salt will give you a great all-in-onecleanser/scrub. But more on that in my next review ….

Are you a Lush fan? If so, what’s your favourite product? Leave us a comment below ……

Maiti Nepal – how one woman is fighting back against sex traffickers

… this was a share on my Facebook page today and I defy anyone to watch it without getting a lump in their throat….. what Anuradha Koirala is nothing short of a miracle, dealing with the disgusting sex traffickers who trawl the streets.

 

 

“Kathmandu, Nepal – Geeta was 9 when she began wearing makeup, staying up until 2 a.m. and having sex with as many as 60 men a day.

“I used to be really sad and frustrated with what was happening in my life,” she said.

The daughter of Nepalese peasant farmers, Geeta — now 26 — had been sold to a brothel in India by a member of her extended family. The family member had duped Geeta’s visually impaired mother into believing her daughter would get work at a clothing company in Nepal.

“The brothel where I was … there [were] many customers coming in every day. The owner used to verbally abuse us, and if we didn’t comply, [she] would start beating us with wires, rods and hot spoons.”

It was not until Geeta was 14 that a police officer rescued her and brought her to a safe house compound run by

Anuradha Koirala

The 61-year-old woman and her group, Maiti Nepal, have been fighting for more than 16 years to rescue and rehabilitate thousands of Nepal’s sex trafficking victims.

“Families are tricked all the time,” said Koirala. “The trafficking of the girls is done by people who are basically known to the girls, who can lure them from the village by telling them they are getting a nice job. It’s a lucrative business.”

By raiding brothels, patrolling the India-Nepal border and providing safe shelter and support services, Koirala and Maiti Nepal have helped rescue and rehabilitate more than 12,000 Nepali women and girls since 1993.

According to the U.S. State Department, some 10,000 to 15,000 women and girls from Nepal are trafficked to India and then sexually exploited each year.

Koirala’s own history in an abusive relationship led her to her crusade. For most of her young adulthood, she taught primary school English in Nepal. But when her relationship took a violent turn, her life’s “purpose and responsibility completely changed,” she said.

“Every day, there was battering. And then I had three miscarriages that I think [were] from the beating. It was very difficult because I didn’t know in those days where to go and report [it], who to … talk to.”

After the relationship ended, Koirala used a portion of her $100 monthly salary to start a small retail shop to employ and support displaced victims of sex trafficking and domestic violence.

By the early 1990s, an increasing demand for help and persistent cases of violence against women compelled Koirala to do more. Maiti Nepal was her brainchild for giving voice, legal defense and rehabilitation to victims of sex trafficking.

Roughly translated, Maiti means “Mother’s Home.” The group has facilities throughout Nepal and India, but most of the rehabilitation work takes place at its main campus in Kathmandu, Nepal.

Koirala said girls from the brothels arrive empty-handed, sick, in many cases pregnant or with small children, and “psychologically broken.”

“When the girl first comes to Maiti Nepal, we never, never ask them a question. We just let them [be] for as long as they need. We let them play, dance, walk, talk to a friend,” Koirala said. “They are afraid at first, but eventually they will talk to us on their own.”

The group also takes in rape and domestic violence survivors, as well as abandoned children.

“I cannot say no to anybody,” Koirala said. “Everybody comes to Maiti Nepal.”

Accommodating its population of close to 400 women and children requires a large staff of teachers, counselors and medical personnel — and dozens of bunk beds. Many of the staff are sex trafficking survivors now committed to helping rehabilitate other girls. The work is funded by grants and donations from around the world.

Post-rescue recovery is comprehensive. Maiti Nepal provides medical treatment, psychological and legal counseling, formal court filings and criminal prosecution, all for free.

While some of the girls are able to return to their families, many of them — particularly those with HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases — become socially stigmatized and are no longer welcome in their home communities. For these girls, Maiti Nepal becomes their new, and possibly last, home. A hospice on the compound’s grounds houses terminally ill patients.

“The hardest part for me is to see a girl dying or coming back with different diseases at an [age] when she should be out frolicking,” Koirala said. “That’s what fuels me to work harder.”

The group’s ultimate goal is to help girls become economically independent and reintegrated into society.

“We try to give them whatever work they want to do, whatever training they want to do, because when you’re economically empowered, people forget everything. People even forget [she is] HIV-positive or was trafficked,” Koirala said.

Koirala and at least 50 trafficking survivors also participate in what she calls social preventive work outside the campus. Their community awareness camps educate families in rural villages and city slums about the dangers of sex trafficking, and a daily patrol at crossing points along the India-Nepal border successfully rescues an average of four Nepali girls a day.

“Our girls are border guards who have been trafficked themselves. They easily recognize a girl that is being trafficked or will be trafficked,” Koirala said. “The girls need no motivation from me. They know the horrors of the brothel, and they are here to save their sisters.”

Some girls who are trafficked choose to remain prostitutes for life because their home villages will not accept them. But Koirala says that among those rescued by Maiti Nepal, there isn’t a single case when a girl has returned back to the streets.

Geeta’s recovery is one of the group’s success stories. Today, she works at Maiti Nepal as a peer educator and also helps with the group’s awareness camps. She credits Koirala and Maiti Nepal for the strength to keep living and the confidence to join the fight against sex trafficking.

“Anuradha is a hero. … She’s courageous,” Geeta said. “She gave me my faith back. … If Maiti Nepal wasn’t there for me, I would be dead by now.”

(report courtesy of CNN)

*** Please share this and leave a comment below. The more awareness is made of the awful injustices to these girls and women, the sooner it may be prevented.

Honesty, Integrity, Transparency

 These days, everyone could do with extra money in their pocket –

so you may have been looking around for ways to earn but not sure what to do or where to start. You might have looked for a second day or night job – but have you thought about perhaps learning how to earn from home? Does the idea of working from your laptop or pc appeal to you? Just being able to make an extra sum of money each month could significantly help your budget. Ok, read on …….

The three words above are those that I always think of when I think of  Chris Farrell – honesty, integrity and transparency.  Who’s Chris Farrell? Chris  is  the guy to watch in the world of online marketing.  As a total newcomer to the internet marketing world back in 2008, Chris has built up an incredible online business together with an outstanding membership site. He’s remained the number one internet marketing service for good reason.

big chris pic 201x300 Honesty, Integrity, Transparency So what makes Chris so different from the other so-called online mentors out there? For me, it’s Chris’s hands-on approach. He’s a genuinely nice, caring guy and his integrity and honesty shine through all he does online.  Leah and I know Chris personally and we  can both vouch for the fact that he’s a definite candidate for  “what you see is what you get!”

Chris is a self-confessed lover of online video marketing and he uses this skill to his advantage. His years spent as a radio DJ in London give him an edge, with his clear diction and sense of humour. You watch over his shoulder as he walks you through each step, explaining and implementing each element required to build your web business on a solid foundation.

His step by step method of teaching newcomers to build their own online business is hard to beat. Every stage is covered in complete details, from choosing a domain name to building your first website with WordPress and learning to countless traffic techniques.  To get you started, there are Done For You sites, in well-researched niches, allowing you to start building your subscriber lists with all the work done for you!

The membership site offers members everything to get them started online, in easy to follow detailed videos and Chris’s own inimitable style of teaching – relaxed, humourous and human! The whole site was totally revamped a couple of months’ ago, giving it a new, fresh feel with everything easy to access and logically placed so that you know exactly which direction you need to head to once you’ve finished a particular section.

There is 24/7 free techie help from the excellent forum moderators to help members with any queries they have and the friendly Members Only Forums are an integral part of the membership.  Chris delivers each and every piece of the puzzle to get your online business up and running. He knows how hard it is to get going, he’s trodden that road himself and is well aware of the struggles newcomers face when they start out online. You’re not thrown in at the deep end, Chris guides you slowly through the processes you need to learn, starting from the very basics.

If you’re looking for a place to learn exactly what you need to know, at your own pace, with no pressure, a place which is jam packed  with expertise, knowledge and friendliness, then you can’t go wrong checking out what there is to help you out.

Since joining CFM in 2009, the knowledge I’ve gained from this membership has been priceless and the fact that I’ve been able to make an income from various streams is pretty awesome too – so if you’re new to internet marketing, and have the burning desire to earn some extra money doing your”own thing” online, head on over  here to see how easily you could start.  It could be the best move you’ll ever make!

Herbidacious!

Parsley, dill, rosemary ….. I was picking herbs from my herb pots the other afternoon and for some unknown reason, one of the songs from “The Herbs” just popped into my head – Parsley the Lion’s song to be exact! Are you old enough to remember this tv programme? If not, it was first shown in 1968 but we bought a video when the girls were young so that they could watch it. It brought a flood of memories back for me. Parsley the Lion was our favourite, he was so cute! “Herbidacious” was the magic word which opened the gate to enter the secret walled garden where the herbs all lived – and you could lose yourself in this enchanting world aimed at children but which drew a huge adult audience too! The Herb characters which appeared regularly were: Parsley the Lion – Parsley the Lion was the shy but friendly main character. He always sat on the path in front of the herb garden to welcome the viewers. He was very frightened of strangers until he got to know them. He was one of only two Herbs who seemed aware of the viewers. He hated getting his tail wet! Sage the Owl – A bad-tempered owl who was almost always in a bad mood. He fell out of his nest a lot, and hated getting his feathers wet Dill the Dog – Dill was a hyperactive dog who was always getting into scrapes, which provided Parsley with a rich source for his dry comments. He was constantly chasing his tail, and a source of great annoyance to Constable Knapweed Sir Basil – The “King of The Herbs”- wore a deerstalker and had a fondness for hunting, although he wasn’t particularly good at it. A good ole country boy! Lady Rosemary – Sir Basil’s prim and proper wife Constable Knapweed – A policeman who was constantly writing the Herbs names in his notebook for no real reason Bayleaf the Gardener – Always hard at work in the garden. Worked for Sir Basil and Lady Rosemary Tarragon the Dragon – A friendly but  very clumsy dragon. Everything he breathed fire on disappeared. He hatched from an egg that fell from a kingdom in the sky. There were other herbs who appeared perhaps once or twice throughout the whole series but the main characters appeared in every programme. Think I might have to climb into the loft and find that old VHS ………   the herbs 300x220 Herbidacious!

Are there any children’s programmes that you loved to watch – or still watch today with your family? Let us know, we’d love to hear from you!

Help! My baby won’t stop crying….

sleeping baby on a hand 300x200 Help!  My baby wont stop crying....

photo by Vera Kratochvil

 

Ask any new parents

what they find the hardest to cope with in their new roles and nine times out of ten, they’ll say it’s their baby crying. All babies cry – it’s a fact of life and it’s natural. Your baby is dependant on your for everything – food, comfort, warmth. Crying is her only means of communicating her needs to you.

But sometimes it’s hard to know exactly what she is trying to tell you. You’ve fed her, winded and changed her and she’s STILL crying …… take a look at some of these tips and see if they’ll help ….

* when your baby is very young, her stomach is still tiny and can’t hold much, so she could be hungry – even if her last feed doesn’t seem that long ago!

* she may just want to be held and cuddled. Don’t forget, she’s spent the last nine months in the warmth and comfort of your womb and now she’s out in the world and it’s a shock to her system. You may hear stories about how holding your baby will spoil her. Relax – this just isn’t possible. Tiny babies need as much physical contact as possible, so keep on cuddling! It’s the best way to bond with your little one plus it’s one of the best feelings ever!

* many babies find it hard to “switch off” and they can become overtired, especially if you’ve had visitors who, naturally, want to hold her. Spending a little time somewhere quiet should help settle her down

* if your little one is too hot or cold, she’ll probably cry. Not many babies like cold air on their bare skin (unless you’re trying to cool them down!) so changing nappies can start the crying off. Don’t worry, you’ll soon be an ace at swift changes! Make sure she’s not too hot when you put her to sleep; a sleeping bag is a great choice for babies, especially if they tend to wriggle around a lot during the night.  Help!  My baby wont stop crying.... Help!  My baby wont stop crying....

* try swaddling your baby. Back “in the day”, swaddling was the done thing. New moms were taught how to wrap their newborns tightly so that they felt safe and secure, replicating their time in the womb. It found its way into our family last year when Archie was born. Son-in-law began swaddling him when he wouldn’t settle; it calmed Archie and he slept so much better when swaddled!  You can utilise a blanket or sheet, or you might prefer a Swaddleme, which allows you to change your baby’s nappy whilst still swaddled! Take a look at the Summer Infant SwaddleMe Cotton Small Blue Help!  My baby wont stop crying....

 Help!  My baby wont stop crying.... Help!  My baby wont stop crying....

* try a dummy/soother to help her settle. Many parents still dislike the thought of giving their baby a dummy but if you’ve tried everything else, give it a go. When Leah was born all those years ago, I was so anti-dummies but after a few days of solid crying, my midwife suggested we try one and it was definitely the best thing we did! And forget those old wives tales of being stuck with the dummy forever – ours were all thrown down the garden at the age of 2 by their owners never to be used again!

 Help!  My baby wont stop crying.... Help!  My baby wont stop crying....

* you could try playing white noise. This mimics the sounds in the uterus and has helped soothe many unsettled babies to sleep (mine included!) It’s actually not a noise, it’s a frequency and babies seem to love it! It reduces stress as it blocks out the outside stimulations that unsettle your little one. It’s certainly worth trying.  You can download a good white noise mp3 here.

As you and your baby grow together, you’ll learn to distinguish her different cries, but sometimes she’ll cry for no apparent reason and this is when your new mommy skills will be tested. If the crying’s persistent, it can wear you down so it’s good to find ways to soothe her. Try holding her close to you- they like the sound of your heartbeat, a familiar sound from when they were in the womb. Don’t think you’re to blame when she cries and if you’re getting really stressed out, make sure you take time out and put yourself first. Put your little one safely in her cot and let her cry for a little while; make sure you you go well out of earshot. Take some deep breaths! Relax for a minute or two, make yourself a cup of tea …. your stress will transfer to your baby. If it gets to the point where you’re at the end of your tether, it’s time to call a relative or friend for some support. A break will do you the world of good.

If you’re worried about your baby, then make sure you either call your health visitor, midwife or doctor to get her checked out. No-one will think you’re over-reacting, it may be that your little one is coming down with something that needs sorting. Trust your mom’s instinct and do what you feel is right for your baby. After all, no-one knows her better than you!

Do YOU have any tips for helping your baby stop crying? If so, we’d love you to share them. Pop your comments below ….