Jaxons 1st birthday

My baby is officially a whole year old.

I have kept a tiny human alive for over a year now and to me that is fucking incredible considering I have never been able to keep a plant alive for more than a week.

For Jaxons first birthday I wanted to do something special. I wanted to create a day that was full of fun and love for my perfect little man.

I wanted to have a big party with everyone who loves him there to celebrate what an amazing, clever little boy he is. So I went to the same venue my mum hired for my baby shower and I hired out the same room. I knew the food was amazing there as we had the buffet for my baby shower and it was incredible. A massive selection of gourmet foods and even a vegan option for my little sister.

I had decided on a Mickey Mouse themed birthday party as let’s face it, who doesn’t love Mickey and his friends?

I had Jaxons birthday cake custom made by a local cake shop and it was out of this world!

The top tier was vanilla sponge with chocolate chips.

The second tier was white chocolate sponge and the bottom tier was a double chocolate.

The whole cake had butter cream fillings throughout the layers and the cream was coated over all three layers. Then the icing was on top and even the icing was delicate and full of flavour.

I don’t usually like fondant icing but this was so good I was eating it as I was cutting the cake. The lady who made his cake has also been so amazing and has taken the icing figure of Mickey and his Ballon back and is having it coated in a resin so I can keep it as an ornament. I mean how sweet is that?

The whole day went off perfectly, I got to the venue a couple hours earlier than the guests were due to arrive so I could put the balloons and decorations out without the stress of people showing up before it was ready.

Once the room was finished I was able to sit down for half an hour and have a drink and let Jaxon have a well needed nap before his party.

Jaxon got spoiled by so many amazing presents and I had requested on the invitations that people bring him a book and sign the inside of the book as a wonderful keepsake. I have always cherished my books and I hope to encourage Jaxon to be a bookworm too!

The books that Jaxon got will be cherished and loved for so many years and hopefully he will be able to read the same books to his baby one day too. I know I’m so sentimental and sappy.

I was given an idea by my friend Chloe to make sweet cones for everyone instead of party bags and I am so glad I did.

Chloe had stickers personalised to fit the theme of the party and they were just beautiful and then we spent a couple afternoons at mine filling the cones (and my face) with a different array of gummy sweets.

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I honestly couldn’t have hoped for a better day to celebrate my wonderful miracle babys first birthday.

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Broccoli & Cheese muffins

So let’s just start this off by telling you all the truth.

I HATE COOKING.

Like despise being in the kitchen, I feel like I spend hours cooking for it to just disappear within minutes, then I’m usually left to clean the kitchen after (although recently my OH has been brilliant at doing the kitchen while I put Jaxon to bed).

But I decided to try and be a ‘Pinterest mum’ for a change and cook something yummy for Jaxon. So I decided I would try one of these veggie muffin recipes.

I got a basic savoury muffin recipe from google. And then I added a couple cups of cheese and a medium sized broccoli head (cooked and then finely chopped/ smashed).

They were actually a huge success and tasted so good I ate three before they had even cooled down enough for me to give one to Jaxon. In my defence I had to make sure they weren’t poisoned- it was my cooking afterall.

Jaxon loves them! So much so that my friend Kez told me to try swapping the broccoli for spinach. I did and they were amazing too!

The thing I like most about the muffins is:

1. Jaxon can never eat more than one so I have loads.

2. They can be frozen.

3. They are a really easy way to get veggies into fussy eaters.

4. They are super easy to make!

I’m not going to lie, cooking these muffins for Jaxon has definitely boosted my confidence in making more foods for him that I would usually be too afraid of.

I find myself constantly on Pinterest now looking at other new recipes that I can whip up and batch cook to load into my freezer. It’s also brilliant because it’s a way I can get veggies into my OH (he’s like having another child when it comes to dinners).

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The recipe I used is

1 medium head of broccoli

1 cup of plain flour

5 oz of grated cheese/ this is a rough estimate for a coupe handfuls

6 fluid oz of milk (whole milk is best if cooking for babies)

3 TBSP of virgin olive oil

3 TSP of baking powder / do not use if using self raising flour

1 large egg / 2 small eggs

I pre heated my oven at 180 degrees

I cooked the broccoli until soft and then I shoved it in my food processor but you can smash with a fork or masher.

Mix the flour, broccoli, cheese and baking powder into a big bowl.

Add the liquids; egg, milk and oil.

Mix it well until it’s a sticky paste, I always tend to have to add a pinch more flour or a bit more cheese until I’m happy with the texture.

Grease a muffin tray, I use coconut oil or unsalted butter.

Fill the muffin tray with your mixture and cook for roughly 20-25 minutes or until the tops are slightly golden.

Let them cool and enjoy!

The Little Things

Recently I have felt like I have been suffocating from my life, everything has been getting to be too much for me and in all honesty I’ve been struggling to keep a smile on my face.

So I have decided I am going to find the good in every single day.

Today for example, Jaxon had a complete meltdown while I was getting him dressed but then afterwards he gave me a huge cuddle. The cuddle was the good of course.

Even on the days when the house is a complete shit hole, the laundry needs doing and the rabbit hutch stinks; I look around and make sure I remind myself how blessed I am to have this house, and the stuff that is everywhere making it a mess. I remind myself how snuggly my bunny is and how much Jaxon loves him.

On the days when is pissing it down with rain I choose to look at how much easier it will be to get around town because no one else is crazy enough to go out in it. Or I look at how much easier it is to get Jaxon to nap when he’s all wrapped up in his buggy.

When Jaxon isn’t feeling great I look at the good in how he only wants me (or my boobs) for comfort, and how he just wants to sit and cuddle for hours… even if I do have to endure the hell that is Hey DUGGEE on repeat for the 6589 time that day.

It’s really not as easy as it sounds to find the good in every day when you’re struggling with PND/PNA and you’re running on fumes because your baby has still never slept through the night once in over a year. But I’m trying. I don’t want to be the mum who is always moaning or shouting. I don’t want to be the mum who is always miserable and grumpy.

I want to be the very best mum I can be for my son and that is all I am working towards. So if that means sitting down at the end of each day and writing a list of all the good things that have happened that day so be it.

I am going to start doing things that make me happy every day, if that is taking Jaxon to the park and seeing him on the swings or taking ten minutes to myself in the evening to ready my book or have a drink. I am going to find something good.

TheLetDown- Netflix

First I would like to say that I have only watched the first episode and this is my personal opinion/ reaction to it. 

So this is the show that I am seeing loads of hype about online, so I thought I would give it a go and see if its actually as funny as everyone is saying.

I got about ten minutes in when I realised I don’t find the show funny at all, I think it was supposed to highlight the struggles of motherhood in a funny way but to me it was just upsetting.

It hit hard for me when I realised so many women are going through the same thing, they must be because otherwise why would they have made a TV show highlighting the exact struggles that make motherhood so damn hard and so damn lonely.

The first episode had me and my friend nearly in tears and not with laughter. It made us want to cry when we saw the dickhead husband who was laughing and joking about how much of a prick he is when it comes to his wife and baby. How he purposely hides in his car if he gets home and his baby is awake.

If thats comedy then I’m done. This doesn’t seem like it should be a comedy for new mums, it feels like it should be a tragic warning of what could be coming.

I haven’t watched any more and I don’t intend too.

 

My C Section

You all know that I had a pretty horrendous labour and birth story if you’ve read my previous posts, if not you can read it here, on my blog in my older posts.

But one thing I have been thinking about a lot over the past year is how I feel about having a C section.

I am the first person to say that I feel like I failed as a mother right from the very beginning because I wasn’t able to do the ‘normal’ or ‘right’ thing to give birth to my son.

So I’ve struggled for the whole first year of Jaxons life, feeling like I never properly ‘gave birth’ to my baby. I feel like I failed him by not giving him a calming and safe transition from womb to world.

Everyone I speak to gets to tell these amazing, empowering birthing stories and I just sit there quietly, ashamed of my body and how it failed to do the very thing it was designed to do.

I know from having my whole family tell me time and time again how I gave birth and how it doesn’t matter if it was a natural or if it was a C section but to me it does matter.

My labour is one of the main reasons I tell myself and other people that I am NOT having anymore children, I didn’t enjoy having a C section, I didn’t enjoy the gruesome recovery that came with it. The fact that it is very possible that I would end up having another C section is why I can’t imagine having another baby, I don’t think I could handle going through the recovery of another C section, having a newborn to look after AND having a toddler running around.

Every time I see my scar it brings me back to the fear I felt during my labour. I don’t see it as my ‘war scar’ or whatever else people want to call it, I see it as a constant reminder that I almost died and I could have lost my baby. So it haunts me.

I don’t remember the operating room or the technical stuff that happened during my C section, but I do remember the tugging and pulling sensation, I also remember trying to not fall asleep while on the operating table because my body was so exhausted. I was told over and over again to keep my eyes open and to stay awake, I don’t know if this was for them to monitor me or for me to not miss out on the birth of my baby. Either way I was more exhausted than I have ever been in my entire life.

Then I remember being so cold I was sure I was going to die, I don’t know how else to explain it, I felt like I had ice water running through my veins. My body went to ice, I felt like they had poured ice into my open stomach. It was awful, I started shivering and felt like I was never going to warm up again. Its an odd sensation feeling ice cold all over your body even when you can’t feel half of your body. I don’t want to ever experience that cold feeling again.

Even after Jaxon was delivered and safe, I can’t say the recovery was anything I would ever want to experience again.

Laying in the hospital bed propped up with pillows and blankets because any slight movement I felt like my stomach was going to rip open; any sneeze or slight cough was agony. But of course when you know you can’t sneeze or cough or move its the only time you get a tickle in your throat or have a sneezing fit or end up with back ache from laying in the same place for hours.

My C section took away so much from what I had wanted after the birth of my baby. I didn’t get my instant skin to skin because he had to be taken away to be checked over by his paediatrician (Of course this was more important) but it was over 30 minutes later before i finally got to hold my baby boy. It took away my wish for delayed cord clamping which has left me feeling massive guilt because I know the health benefits of leaving the cord attached for longer than a few seconds.

It took away my birth pictures, I know this may seen strange to some but I wanted ‘fresh’ out of the womb pictures of Jaxon and of course that wasn’t able to happen because of how my labour went.

It took away me being able to change my babys first nappy, I physically couldn’t move enough to do it. Which also lead to me being unable to dress my baby in his first ever clothing.

It may not seem like these things matter, but to me it is devastating. I wasn’t able to shower alone, or walk to the bathroom, or even get out of bed without help. I felt weak and useless. If you know me in real life I hate asking for help so this was awful for me.

But it was also the way my baby came into the world safely so I have to try to remind myself that is the most important thing.

 

Spring

Finally its started to warm up and its feeling and even looking like spring has finally arrived after what feels like years of cold, wet weather.

I don’t know why the weather has such control over my feelings and moods but it does.

I am so much happier in the warmer weather, it doesn’t even need to be hot or sunny but just having the warmer days bring my moods up so much.

Walking without a coat on, or being soaking wet from the rain is so much more appealing to me too. So I am outside a lot more now too! Which is great for Jaxon because he loves going out and seeing new things.

Now Jaxon is that little bit older he is so much more aware than he was last spring (DUH he was a newborn) so he gets excited when we pass dog walkers or he sees any kind of animal in the fields. Its great to see him pointing and ‘speaking’ when he sees animals.

Its also nice to not have to bundle Jaxon up so much in his buggy, I love not having to fight him into wearing a snowsuit or gloves. I like seeing his cubby little arms in just a short sleeved tee. Its the small things like this that lift my mood significantly.

I love the warmer weather because it means that I am able to take Jaxon to the park to play in the swings which he loves so much. I try to take him a few times a week if I can, as long as its not raining I try to let him enjoy the park.

So heres to May bringing the warmer weather and the happier moods.

 

Q&A Blog Post

All questions that have been asked have come from Twitter, I have included everyones Twitter handle so you can go and check them out and give them a follow! I have also answered all questions as truthfully as I can.

Question 1 by  

 – If you could teach your babies just one important lesson, what would it be?

I will teach Jaxon what it means to be kind, truly a kind man who can be proud of himself knowing he isn’t a total asshole. I think kindness is such a rarity these days that it  may as well be classed as a superpower so to me kindness is extremely important. 

 

Question 2 & 2.1 by 

-How did you meet Matthew?

I met Matthew on the Leas in our town through some friends, I was with a friend who knew a friend that Matthew was with and when our friends stopped to say hi we ended up meeting. It wasn’t until a few weeks after that first meeting that we actually got to speak to each other properly. We became friends first and after a couple of months of hanging out in a group of friends we became close and finally became a couple. 

-What tattoos do you have?

I have quiet a few tattoos;

I have a disney sleeve on my right arm.

I have a skull on my ankle.

I have a seahorse on the inside of my ankle. 

I have both of my feet done in book quotes. 

I have my shoulder done with a daisy.

I have Jaxons name on my hand.

I have a portrait of my pet bunny on my calf.

I have my fingers done. 

I have the backs of my thighs done with big bows. 

I have a raspberry on my wrist.

I have the namaste symbol. 

I have Chinese scripture.

I have a breastfeeding tattoo booked in too for my next one! 

I plan on being covered in tattoos and I don’t intend to stop until I’m COVERED! 

 

Question 3 by @opheliasodyssey

How do you keep your relationship fresh after starting a family?

Well, my relationship with Matthew kind of took the back seat for the first few weeks (months) after having Jaxon as we were both so wrapped up in the new life of parents that we did kind of forget to be a couple as well as parents. 

But now enough time has passed that we have been able to find a healthy balance. 

We don’t go out without Jax as I do not intend on leaving Jaxon with anyone. But we do have date nights at home with take outs or we pick a TV show and sit and watch it together in the evening after Jaxon has gone down to bed. 

We just try to keep doing the small things that make a difference; For example, Matthew makes me a cup of coffee every morning and brings it to me in bed if I am lucky enough to be in bed still. I try to get him a few bits when I am out like his favourite sweets so he knows I was thinking about him during the day. Its the small things like that, that helps us stay somewhat like the ‘old us’. 

Question 4 by @amummastimeout

Do you have a favourite tattoo and are you planning any more? 

I have a couple favourite tattoos actually, my Raspberry on my wrist is extremely important to me. As is Jaxons name on my hand. 

I have a breastfeeding tattoo booked in for the end of April but I have also come up with two new ideas that I am hopefully getting booked in for the end of May/ June time. 

 

Question 5a & 5b  by @TheNuthatchNest

a. In your opinion, what is the best thing about being a mum?

I honestly think the best part about being a mum is being blessed with a baby who makes my whole life seem better, his smiles literally mend my broken heart on a daily basis and his laugh, his laugh is the most amazing sound I’ve ever heard. Its also watching him grow and learn and change every single day!! Watching him do new things that he couldn’t do the day before and feeling an immense amount of pride, over simple things, like Jaxon has recently learned to wave ‘hello’ and ‘goodbye’ and he’s learned to dance to music and he has learnt to hold his sip cup up all by himself!! Its the small things like that, that make being a mum the best thing I ever decided to do. 

b. What has been your highlight of motherhood so far? 

I don’t know if there is just one thing? The fact that Jaxon chooses me to comfort him over anyone else is the most amazing feeling I’ve ever felt because I know that I single handedly created that bond with him and no one can take that away from me. 

#MUMPALS – March

So the second #MUMPALS has come and gone and this time the theme was for the mummas. It seemed only fitting as it was the month of Mother’s Day.

I was so lucky because I got to buy for one of my ‘real life’ friends and it was so nice to be able to get bits for her, when I know her on a personal level.

I was also spoiled rotten by the wonderful mummy who got me, the LOVELY https://www.caitylis.co.uk

I was spoiled with a lovely set of three bracelets which I wear all the time as I do love to load up on bracelets.

I got given an amazingly snuggly pair of slipper socks, which I now live in the moment I get home.

I was also lucky enough to get given some face masks and pamper bits so I am very much looking forward to being able to use them!

And sweets! I got bought some pink marshmallows 😍 all I can say is YUM!

It was quiet nice to get to buy for another mum and to think about the little things that would make a small difference to me but get to make that difference for another tired mummy.

I am very much looking forward to the next #MUMPALS swap already!

Gentle Parenting

As I am awake at 3:45am with a baby who is refusing to be put down because he is teething, I thought I would use this time and write a blog post on how I am choosing to parent MY baby.

I think the way I am choosing to raise Jaxon would be described as Gentle parenting.

I will raise Jaxon in the way I feel is right for our family and that’s the end of it.

I will go to Jaxon whenever he cries, I will pick him up whenever he wants, and if that means I have nights like tonight where I don’t get any sleep; well that’s fine.

I will nurse him until he self weans, mainly because I know he is using me as comfort just as much as food, and if he needs that comforting he can have it.

I will Co sleep for as long as he wants, by co sleeping I mean staying awake all night with Jaxon laying on top of me, because he won’t sleep in the bed next to me.

I am going to take Jaxons lead when it comes to a lot of things. I do believe babies are extremely good at letting us know if they are ready or not ready for certain things. Like weaning, self settling, dropping naps.

I don’t tend to worry much about what other people think I should or shouldn’t be doing and I think I’m happier for it.

I don’t have a set routine with Jaxon, I don’t care how many times he naps during the day, but I do try to not let him danger nap too often as it really screws his nights up.

I don’t really care what time he goes to bed at night, mainly because it’s always between 7-9pm. If he’s tired he will let me know and I’ll let him sleep. It’s that simple.

I don’t have a routine with food, if he’s hungry he can eat. If he’s not then I won’t force it. Again I let him choose if and when he wants to eat. Some days he doesn’t eat much at all, and it does worry me slightly but then he makes up for it the next day and doesn’t stop eating.

I know there are loads of mums who swear by routines for their babies and that’s great if it works for them, but this is what works for us.

This is how I will continue to raise Jaxon regardless of what people try to convince me to do.

Where has a year gone?

Okay so I know everyone says times flys by when you have a baby, but holy shit it really does!

I’m sitting here nursing Jaxon to try to get him to go down to sleep and I just can’t believe how big he’s got.

He is going to be ONE this month. Like how? Where the hell have the last 12 month gone?

It feels like only weeks ago I gave birth and now my tiny 6lb baby is talking, crawling and crusing around the furniture. I don’t like it! I want to slow time down. I feel like I want to stop time and live in this little time zone forever.

I know the fun is yet to come when Jax is walking properly, but I’m just enjoying him being small so much I don’t want him to grow up anymore.

I think back on all of the things he’s doesn’t do anymore and it’s heartbreaking. He has changed and outgrown so many things already. He used to pull certain faces that I’ve not seen in months, or he used to sleep a certain way that he never does anymore. It’s making me sad to think that in another six months he won’t be doing some of my favourite things he’s picked up recently and it will all change again.

I know people laugh at how many videos and pictures I have of Jaxon but they are the ONLY way I can relive the last year. I look back on pictures and I’ve FORGOTTEN some of them even exist. How? How could I have possibly forgotten some of these moments happened?

It is true what they say. Time goes too damn fast.

It’s easy to forget that it won’t last forever when you’ve barely had any sleep and you’re exhausted. The saying is so true ‘the nights are long, but the years are short’ I couldn’t agree with it any more.

I just hope my little baby doesn’t grow up too quickly because I’m not ready for my baby to be independent at all.