A Day In The Life Of A Mum To 4

A Day In The Life Of A Mum To 4

I’ve never really been one for strict routines. When the boys were babies, we used to go with the flow and most of the time it worked really well. It meant we could go out and about without it interfering with nap or feed time too much. I have friends with very strict routines and they allow themselves almost no freedom. They cannot come out at certain times of the day and I didn’t want to become like that.

When the twins came along, we decided that things had to change. No longer could we use a baby led approach as there were now far too many babies in the house! So, we adopted a routine and it has been working pretty well. The routine does have flexibility so we are not completely housebound and the routine is relaxing slightly as everyone gets older. Here is a day in my life.

Our days usually start about the same time and if we go out for the day we try to travel at nap time.

7.30 am – wakey, wakey, rise and shine. Anybody who is not already awake gets woken. First job of the day is a production line of nappy changes!

8.00 am – feeding of the masses. It’s breakfast time for the boys while I make the girls bottles.

8.30 am – baby feeding time. I’ve mastered the art of feeding both at the same time so this has halved the amount of time taken. The boys tend to watch a bit of Cbeebies while I do this.

9.00 am – activity time or off to nursery on a Thursday and Friday. I try and set an activity up for the boys so I can grab a few minutes to do something like tummy time with the girls. On a Tuesday my lovely Home Start volunteer comes around this time and entertains the boys. They love having someone different to play with.

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10.00 am – twin nap time. Parenting suddenly gets so much easier when there’s only 2! I realise how easy life was with just 2! I’ll try and play a game with the boys while their sisters are asleep so they get a little bit more of Mummy’s attention.

12.00 noon – lunch time for the biggest ones and around the time the twins usually wake. I feed the biggest ones and myself first while the girls have a kick around on the floor (it’s the safest time).

12.30 pm – solid food time for the girls. Before I clear up too much I let them add to the decoration on the floor!

1.00 pm – clear away lunch items and load the dishwasher. Make bottles for the girls and carry on feeding. After lunch is quiet hour for the boys. We try to watch a film and have a few minutes peace, quiet and rest.

2.00 pm – it’s girlie nap time again so once they are asleep I have time to play with the boys. We tend to try do something active like put on music and dance around like nutters or go play in the garden. One afternoon, a few weeks ago, we played in the snow and last week we planted all our spring bulbs.

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3.30 pm – the twins are usually awake by now. I’ll get them out their cot and bring them down to play with the boys. They love playing with their sisters and can often be found waving a rattle in their face or kissing them. That’s probably how the girls get poorly so often!

4.00 pm – it’s bottle time again. Sometimes the boys like to help otherwise they are left to their own devices for half an hour while I feed. We’ll probably have Cbeebies on or they’ll play their new favourite game, supermarkets.

5.00 pm – it’s time to start thinking about dinner and battling to keep O awake. He dropped his nap around his 1st birthday and refuses to have it even though he needs it. This means that from late afternoon, if we have been busy, he gets very sleepy. If he naps we wouldn’t be able to get him to bed at night so have to keep him awake!

5.45 pm – dinner time. Feeding time at the zoo begins all over again!

6.30 pm – Daddy is home just in time for bath and bed. The boys have to tidy up all their toys before they go up to bed. Luckily O is a bit of a clean freak and loves a good tidy!

7.00 pm – I change and feed the girls while Daddy does the boys bedtime story. Usually everyone is sound asleep by 7.30 and I collapse in a heap, satisfied that I did a fairly good job keeping everyone alive! Actually, scrap the collapsing in a heap. I start the household chores otherwise they would never get done.

Our IVF Journey: All the fun of living life with twins
Mummy Is The Biggest Liar!

Mummy Is The Biggest Liar!

It’s Saturday morning and all is calm. There are no raised voices and the boys are playing nicely together. The girls are kicking around on the floor cooing at each other. This can only mean one thing – Daddy is at home!

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All week long my job title is not Mummy but referee! I am forever breaking up fights and stopping the children from killing each other. When Daddy texts and ask how the kids are during the day, I give him the honest truth, our children are monsters! They destroy the house, climb all over the furniture and have extremely selective hearing when I’m talking to them.

At the weekends they are all sweetness and light. Daddy simply cannot understand how these sweet, angelic children can do half the things I moan about during the week. They obey commands, play nicely, keep the house relatively tidy and don’t upset Daddy. He can take them out without the car seat fights that I frequently inform him I have!

My children make me look like a massive liar! Does this happen to all Mums or is it just me?

What magically happens to my children at 5.30 on a Friday? Where can I buy some of this super power that Daddy has, as I drastically need some of it during the week? And, when are my children going to stop making me look like a liar?

The Dad Network
Mami 2 Five
Pancake Day

Pancake Day

The boys have been pestering me for several days now asking when it’s Pancake Day. Today, the pestering ended and they finally got their pancakes.

I used a simple Jamie Oliver recipe
1 large egg
1 cup of self raising flour
1 cup of semi skimmed milk

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The boys whisked the mixture until bored then I finished it off!

1 large spoon of mixture into my lovely non-stick frying pan created these beauties.

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I opted for lemon and sugar while the boys went for Nutella.

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They tasted amazing and are not a bad attempt for somebody who burns everything in a frying pan! Thumbs up Mr Oliver!

Choo Choo! A Morning Of Fresh Air.

Choo Choo! A Morning Of Fresh Air.

My two boys are absolutely obsessed with all things train. They are particularly interested if it’s a train that they can actually have a ride on so, when I saw our local miniature steam railway was running this weekend we decided to give it a try. We’ve been on the steam train when they’ve taken their mobile track to local events but today we headed over to their station.

The Fenland Light Railway http:// http://www.fenlandlightrailway.co.uk/ is located in a small village in Cambridgeshire and a little bit off the beaten track. As you head down the road towards it you feel like you are driving into the middle of nowhere.

The boys spotted the steam cloud as soon as we arrived and couldn’t wait to get out the car and onto the train.

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The boys plus Daddy got to have a few rides on this little train while Mummy was left holding the babies! Their faces were an absolute picture and O was giggling the whole way round. I think even Daddy secretly enjoyed it!

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Thankfully, the girls were asleep so lucky me got to enjoy a hot cup of tea!

The site was really busy and it was lovely to see so many people supporting a local charity/hobby (not sure what to call it). They had a queue of people waiting for rides at one point. They have recently moved to a better site and have received a Lottery Grant so it looks like things are on the up for them. 

We eventually managed to prise the boys away from the trains and home for warm sandwiches and a chilled out afternoon. I’m looking forward to taking them back for one of the special events they run throughout the year.

Our Story

Our Story

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In tribute to Valentines Day, a day clearly created by the card companies to boost revenue between Christmas and Easter, I thought I’d tell you a little bit about G and myself.

We first met at the grand old age of 11 when we joined the same secondary school together and found ourselves in the same group of friends. We hung about a bit over the years but nothing exciting happened as he was dating one of my friends. When we were 17 they split up and we both found ourselves without a ‘date’ for the school May Ball so we decided to go together and very quickly became a couple. I think there were a few disapproving looks that we got together but it was obviously meant to be as 12 years later we’re married with 4 children.

Not long after we got together I moved away to go to university while G stayed at home. Those 3 years were really tough. I came home as much as possible and as much as I could afford but G also did lots of journeys up the motorway straight from work. We had a great time on our weekends and holidays but it was still really hard being apart from each other and only speaking on Messenger (old school!) or texting. We did have a few disagreements but we just focused on the end goal of my graduation.

I graduated and moved home to the news that my parents were moving house and going a fair distance away. I managed to get a job near their new house so went with them. For a few months we did the long distance again until we decided enough was enough, we needed our own house. Property was much cheaper near my parents so we bought our first house there.

Not long after we moved in to our house I had quite a severe accident and I knew G was a keeper from the way he looked after me. He helped me through a really difficult period of my life and I’m not sure many would have done that.

A proposal followed on my birthday not long after we moved in and we planned our wedding for 18 months later. I got a bit Bridezilla with the planning but he still wanted to marry me!

We had a fantastic wedding day and it was truly one of the best days of my life. Everything went exactly as it should and he even surprised me with my favourite song for our first dance.

That was five and a half years ago and I love him more than ever. He’s helped me have and bring up four of the most amazing children and is the most amazing Daddy in the world.

Running in Lavender
Bedtime Stories

Bedtime Stories

According to a study conducted by Alton Towers Resort this week, 4 out of 5 children don’t get a bedtime story. For us this is an integral part of our bedtime routine and my favourite time of the day.

We sit the boys together in the youngest ones bedroom and all cuddle up together while we read at least one story but sometimes I get sweet talked into more!

Our current favourite books are

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The Dinosaur That Pooped A Planet by Tom Fletcher and Dougie Pointer. It’s a catchy rhyming book plus it has pooped in the title, my kids were bound to love it!

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Aliens Love Underpants by Claire Freedman and Ben Cort. This book came with a really cute, cuddly alien in pants which O loves to tuck into bed at night. A very colourful book with a catchy story.

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The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson. Every parent knows this story and can probably recite it off by heart like we can. It’s a lovely story which the boys join in with reading. It also has the sound buttons that they can press at various points through the book (or continuously as ours do!)

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Dig Dig Digging by Margaret Mayo and Alex Ayliffe. My boys are vehicle mad and this book covers them all. Ambulances, tractors even road rollers have a catchy, rhyming verses about them which my boys love.

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The Snowman and The Snowdog based on characters by Raymond Briggs. Everyone knows the story of The Snowman and this is a sort of sequel. It is beautifully illustrated and the story is just so lovely. This also has a fantastic CD of the story being read by the wonderful voice of Benedict Cumberbatch! Good for both Mum and kids!

I’m always on the lookout for new books for the children so what are your favourite books? Do you read bedtime stories?

Mums' Days
An Unexpected Arrival – My Second Birth Story

An Unexpected Arrival – My Second Birth Story

November 2012

I had an amazing, if slightly unexpected second labour. My waters went on my due date as I opened the front door to some trick or treaters. They were probably just expecting some sweets but were confronted by a slightly shocked, heavily pregnant woman weeing herself!!

We packed B off to my parents and waited for my contractions to start. My waters went first in my last labour and contractions started about 4 hours later and that was pretty much what I expected this time.

Nothing happened and I got up the next morning feeling really upset knowing I’d have to be induced that evening. We spent the day just pottering around watching films while I bounced on my ball trying to get my contractions started. G fixed my laptop and early in the afternoon I decided to have a little nap to build up my energy for induction.

I woke up about 4.30 and went to the toilet. All of a sudden my contractions started coming really strong and every 3 minutes. We called the hospital as my first labour was relatively quick so I was advised to go to the hospital early this time. The hospital were really busy and held hubby on the phone for ages while they decided if they had room for me!

They finally gave us the go ahead to come in after questioning for ages if I really needed to go to hospital yet so, I started to get dressed to go. I had been a very classy, half undressed pregnant lady all day! I got one leg into my jeans and told hubby I had to push!

He rang delivery straight back and said we weren’t going to make it as I needed to push. The midwife didn’t believe him until she heard me having a contraction in the background! She immediately sent out a blue light ambulance who got to us within 15 minutes and a midwife who was about 10 minutes behind them. The paramedics gave me gas and air which I promptly broke within 20 seconds! They couldn’t do anything else and even asked hubby to check if he could see the head! They actually went and waited in our hall while hubby looked. When the midwife arrived she sauntered in as though she had all the time in the world. She had just enough time to get her gloves on before I yelled “ring of fire” and the whole of O popped out in one go!! The midwife had only just got on the floor to examine me and G said she only just saved O from dropping on the floor.

O arrived at 6pm, less than 90 minutes after my first contraction!! I think I’d been holding him in waiting for help to arrive. I’m sure G would have made a fantastic substitute midwife but I didn’t want him to have that responsibility in case something went wrong. Think everyone was a bit shocked how quickly it happened.

I had no intention of having a home birth but it was really lovely. The paramedics stayed for an hour and the midwife for 2 while she did her paperwork. Daddy had lovely cuddles while I had a bath and then the 3 of us snuggled down for a takeaway in our bed. A really lovely end.

My Week Ahead

My Week Ahead

Every Sunday is spent wracking my brains for ideas of how to keep my brood entertained for the next week. I have to find activities for Monday to Wednesday as Thursday and Friday are nursery days which is enough excitement for one day!

I would really love to get out a bit more but I’m still finding it quite difficult with 3 children that require a pushchair and 1 who doesn’t always listen to me! I’m hoping to be brave and get to the big park at least once a week when the weather improves but it’s currently more like a swimming pool!

This week we are spoilt for visitors. On Monday we have the childrens Uncles coming to play. As they live a little way away, we don’t get to see them a great deal so the kids get thoroughly spoilt! If I’m really lucky they may offer to take the boys out for a few hours so I get some quality girl time. I always feel so guilty that the girls get very little Mummy time. I’m very grateful for my Thursdays where it’s just me and them all day.

Tuesday we have a Home Start volunteer visit for 2 hours. Home Start are a fantastic charity who send out volunteers to help families in need. One of their criteria for ‘family in need’ is a multiple birth but they deal with all types of family. My wonderful volunteer Mary spends 2 hours a week entertaining my brood while I get some jobs done around the house. Without her help, we would all be wearing filthy clothes and my house would be an inch thick in dust! She really does save the day and I fully intend to become a volunteer myself once all of mine are in school. So many people have never heard of the charity but you can find out more at http://www.home-start.org.uk/

Tuesday afternoons usually involves getting muddy in the back garden or the little park we have opposite our house. I’m thinking of buying some bulbs today and getting the boys to pot them on Tuesday. We attempted to grow some strawberry plants last year and they were doing really well until I got too heavily pregnant to get up and care for them (terrible I know).

That just leaves Wednesday. We tend to have a quieter day on Wednesday in preparation for 2 days of nursery. I bought lots of crafty bits before Christmas and the boys are now a bit obsessed with all this glitter and glue! It drives me absolutely round the bend with the mess they make but the look on their faces as they fling glitter everywhere is priceless (mine probably is too!).

A fairly busy week for us which makes a change. Hopefully lots of opportunities for fresh air and memory making. I may even be able to share some pictures later in the week!

Have a good week everyone!

The Birthday That Nobody Dare Speak Of

The Birthday That Nobody Dare Speak Of

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I am now just weeks away from the first birthday that I feel I need to worry about! I will no longer be in my twenties and will be entering the dreaded thirties.  

I’ve always had a mental list of things I wanted to achieve by the time I turned 30. I wanted to:-
▶ have a decent job
▶ be married
▶ have a baby
▶ see a bit of the world
▶ lose weight

It all sounds a bit boring but I am quite simply a very family orientated person.
I’ve done pretty well I think and at 29 years 10 months I have:-
▶ a job. It had potential to be a decent job and one I worked hard to get. I’m proud that I’m a career Mum.
▶ got married. Ticked off my list at the grand old age of 24 when I married my childhood sweetheart (cheese alert!)
▶ had 4 beautiful children and completed my family. The grand plan was never 4 children but, Mother Nature decided to have a bit of fun with us!
▶ seen a small amount of the world but nowhere near enough. I’ve done the Caribbean, Florida, plenty of Europe and Indonesia. Babies curtailed further travels and I wouldn’t change it for the world!
▶ I have failed this many, many times. When I fell pregnant with the twins I was at the heaviest I have ever been. During my pregnancy I got gestational diabetes and it’s given me the wake up call I need to change my eating habits. I am currently at the lightest I have ever been all my adult life. I still have another 2 stone to go to be within a healthy BMI and I hoping 1 of those can be gone before my birthday.

As 30 looms nearer and I begin thinking of the lie I want to tell everyone when they ask how old I am, I’m also wondering where I want my life to go in the next 10 years. This part worries me more than anything – I don’t know! I had all these plans for my twenties and now my thirties seem pretty empty. If I want my thirties to be more exciting than doing the school run, the rounds of the after school clubs and birthday parties I’m going to need some help. I’m tempted by the idea of taking up running with the first challenge being a 5k. Not exactly exciting but anyone who knows me will know me and running are never usually seen together! I want something more exciting though. What exciting challenges can I set myself?

Comment below and help an old girl out please

Product Review – Tommee Tippee Perfect Prep

Product Review – Tommee Tippee Perfect Prep

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My Perfect Prep in prime position in my kitchen!

There is nothing more upsetting than listening to your baby scream for food while you desperately try to cool down a volcanic bottle of milk under the cold tap. Now multiply that by 2 and that was how I envisioned our first few weeks with the twins would go.
We had heard about this miracle product with our last baby but at the time it was brand new and very expensive. It also seemed like an unnecessary luxury when a flask of cooled boiled water had always sufficed.

With twins plus other small, attention seeking children in the house, anything that can save time while leaving you a spare hand is invaluable.

The Perfect Prep creates the ready to drink bottle of milk in under 2 minutes. Firstly, it gives you a shot of boiling water to sterilise the milk powder. Once you’ve added your powder, the machine tops up the bottle to your desired number of ounces with cold filtered water. You add the lid, give it a shake and voila, one perfect temperature bottle.

The Perfect Prep requires a filter which needs changing occasionally. The machine gives you a red light warning when the filter is running out, then a flashing red light when the filter is completely out so you don’t need to change it immediately the light comes on.

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Perfect Prep Filter

Filters cost around £8 and can be purchased from most baby retailers. The packaging states it lasts up to 3 months. We are on filter 3 now after six months of use which I don’t think is too bad given the amount of bottles we make.

The only downside to this machine is the ear splitting beep the machine gives out several times during its cycle. I can understand the need to warn people that boiling water has been produced but, this product goes into houses with small children where, waking a sleeping baby is a deadly sin! Tone it down just a little bit please Tommee Tippee!

This is definitely the best baby purchase we have ever made and I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend it to other expectant parents for a single or multiple babies.

Retailer – Amazon
Price – £55
Purchased – June 2014