We tried: Precious Eco Nappies! + a Giveaway for you

Prior to Nixon’s pull-through operation to help his Hirschspungs Disease we were using cloth nappies.  I invested the money, got my little system sorted and felt good about what we were doing.  I was soon to realise that cloth diapering is very, very easy when you have a baby that never, ever poops.  Post-op, things were radically different.  Nixon’s shorter bowell was fully operational within 15 minutes of waking from anaesthesia and pretty much didn’t stop for about a month.  It’s a miracle that his little baby toosh isn’t scarred from the nappy rash that ensued!

Anyway, I digress as usual……..It was at this particularly difficult time that I packaged up the cloth nappies and eagerly sold them on Trade Me, happy to never see another insert or pocket ever, ever again.

Having an eco-friendly alternative to cloth diapering is so important, because, let’s face it, cloth is not for everyone.  I love disposable nappies.  There.  I said it.  

What is super cool is that now we do have a choice.  We were sent some of the New Precious Eco Nappies to try and Nix has now been wearing them exclusively for the past week.  Did I mention that Nix has had rotavirus over the past week?  No?  I’m sure there is no better road test for a nappy than a Hirschsprung’s kid with rotavirus lol {I’m actually crying on the inside}.

Verdict:  Great.  Super.  No leaks.  Can’t believe I’m saying that after the week we’ve had but it’s true!  A little less stretch than regular disposables but pretty much a non-issue.

New Precious Eco Nappies are 75% biodegradable and compostable in managed landfill and composting facilities, and just the answer for those mums that worry about the environmental implications of conventional disposable nappies.

New Precious Eco Nappies come in six sizes including Newborn, Infant, Crawler, Toddler, Walker and Junior and are available from all New World and Pak’n Save supermarkets as well as online from The Wholesale Nappy Company. Recommended retail price is $11.99.

Here’s your chance to win one of 3 Precious gift packs consisting of a pack of Precious Eco Nappies, a pack of Precious 99.45% Sensitive Water Wipes and a pack of Precious Travel Wipes plus a super cool duffle bag from Cotton On Kids!  I’m giving away 1 prize pack here, just leave me a comment below and let me know how you roll – cloth, disposable, both?  I’m giving away the other 2 prize packs on Facebook so head over to The Best Nest and follow the instructions on the prize image.

Competition closes Wednesday 6th May at 10.pm.

Precious Eco Nappies were provided to me for editorial consideration, opinions expressed are my own.Eco Nappies Mummy Blogger New Zealand

Say hello! Think.Play.Love + Giveaway!

I AM IN AWE OF THE MANY INCREDIBLE MUM’S OUT THERE, DOING A FAB JOB OF RUNNING THEIR OWN SUCCESSFUL BUSINESSES WHILST SIMULTANEOUSLY HOLDING DOWN THE FORT AT HOME. I’M FORTUNATE ENOUGH TO HAVE ‘MET’ MANY OF THESE LADIES ONLINE AND CAN’T WAIT TO INTRODUCE YOU TO SOME NEW FACES AND THEIR AWESOME ENTREPRENEURIAL ENDEAVOURS.  IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO GET INVOLVED AND HAVE YOUR BUSINESS FEATURED, PLEASE SAY HELLO! MELISSA@THEBESTNEST.CO.NZ


 

Ok, so today we are Saying hello! to a business that gives me ALL of the mummy guilts.  When Ethan was a babe we did every activity on offer.  You name it we had a booking; Jumping Beans, swimming from 3 months old, baby art classes, Mainly Music, regular play dates………meanwhile, baby #2?  Nixon and I have been chilling for almost 2 years lol.  And there are reasons for that of course, but one thing I do remember from all of my excursions with Ethan was that sometimes, classes with young bubbas are just as beneficial for the Mums as they are educational and stimulating for the wee ones :  )

Let me introduce Sam and Think.Play.Love.  “Nurturing playful minds for kiwi kids” – how lovely does that sound?  Sam and Hannah from Think.Play.Love bring a uniquely kiwi element to music, movement and sensory classes for babies under 14 months and toddlers 14 months – 3 years.  These two qualified early childhood and primary teachers have crafted their fab, experiential classes to support the New Zealand early childhood curriculum, including learning and experiences in Te Reo.   Based in Auckland, classes are held in Browns Bay, Whenuapai, Takapuna, Pt Chevalier and Henderson.

For more information or to book a class please visit Think.Play.Love online or on Facebook.

Hello Sam!  Which came first, the baby or the business?

The baby, but the idea for the business was dreamt up long before Cooper came along! My business partner, Hannah, attended music classes for babies while working as a nanny in London so we often talked about setting up something similar ourselves but with a New Zealand flavour for our Kiwi kids. After Cooper turned one I wasn’t ready to return to my teaching job as I wanted more flexible hours to be at home with him so we decided to go for it and Think.Play.Love was born!

 What is your background and how does this influence your business ethos?

I worked as a Primary teacher for 10 years so I am extremely passionate about education and child development. Think.Play.Love has allowed me to build on my existing skills as a teacher but broaden my knowledge and experience by branching into the Early Childhood sector. I feel that learning through movement and sensory play is absolutely crucial for the developing minds of babies so this is always at the forefront of my mind when planning our classes.

How do you manage to balance your young family with life as a business owner?

It’s hard that’s for sure! My partner also has his own glazing business so there is a lot to fit in. I try to be really present when I am with Cooper rather than on my phone or the computer so most of my work is done while he is napping during the day or at night once he is in bed. I am so lucky to have such a strong support network, my family have been great! My mum and sister often look after Cooper so that I can run classes.

 Social media is changing the way businesses tell their stories and reach out to customers, how do you incorporate SM in your business plan and is it hard to keep your personal stories separate?

We have found Social Media to be the most effective way for us to get our name out there and generate a following for Think.Play.Love. I do share personal stories or photos of Cooper from time to time. I actually see it as a good thing as I want our followers to be able to relate to me and know that I am a mum just like them.

What’s ahead for Think Play Love?

We are really excited as we are in the process of adding toddler classes which will be available from Term 3. The classes will still include sensory learning experiences but we will add in a lot more movement activities to promote fine and gross motor skills and cross patterning through climbing type activities, all of which develop important brain pathways.


 

If you would like to win a double pass for you and a friend + your babies to try a Think.Play.Love class for yourself head over to The Best Nest on Facebook and follow the competition guidelines.
Think Play Love Baby Sensory Classes Auckland Mum Blogger Think Play Love Baby Sensory Classes Auckland Mum Blogger

 

The yawn-worthy cesarean vs vaginal delivery debate. Let’s put it to bed.

So here’s a ranty post.  Things were getting strangely nice around here but luckily FB came to my rescue with an annoying item in my feed which got me riled up enough to get the creative juices flowing.
See, I just read another (there are millions of these right?) post from a blogger discussing her multiple cesarean sections.  She was discussing the social repercussions of non-vaginal birth, the ‘stigma’ and patronising glances she was subjected to.  The disappointment of long labour that didn’t bear fruit through the birth canal as one would hope.
Can I ask you something? Is this really a thing? Have you ever stooped so low as to judge a woman by how she gave birth?
I guess I’m just a bit over the ‘poor me, I had a cesarean and find myself a victim of an un-empowered birth’ line. 
Some births, I imagine, are empowering, wondrous moments, filled with a feeling of innate physical prowess and accomplishment – a real “we knocked the bastard off” moment of satisfaction.  But let me set the record straight, having a birth without intervention is no guarantee you are going to conquer your own vaginal Mt Everest.
I have never written my birth stories because I personally don’t need to.  Dwelling or reminiscing on details immediately prior to the MOST important events in my life serve no purpose for me and don’t really need to be rehashed, especially in the case of Nixon’s birth.
You see, Ethan arrived in a very textbook way I suppose.  18 hours of labour, epidural, epidural wore off, I screamed and pushed and he was born.  7 lb 12 Oz of sweet baby Ethan. Did I feel super proud of delivering him vaginally? Hell no. I was just glad I survived it and have never given it too much thought since.
Two of my oldest and dearest friends gave birth within the next year or two, both enduring such traumatic vaginal births that they were visibly uncomfortable talking about them, I’m pretty sure one of them was brought to tears when we were discussing future siblings.  They did not feel like the empowered, magical super heroes oft imagined by other women who have had cesarean sections.
8.5 years later I experienced my own horrendous, nightmare of a vaginal birth.  I WISH I had been offered a c-section.  You don’t hear that often do you? 10.4lb of Nixon showed up on D-day posterior and uncooperative.
We had plenty of warning that he was large.  I had insisted throughout the pregnancy that this baby was big.  The scans showed he was big and continually tracked above the 97th percentile.  My midwife paid no heed to my warnings, confident in her profound knowledge that every third trimester mother insists her baby is huge.

With every fibre of my being I wish I had a team of professionals that noticed he was posterior well before the 11th hour and said, “lets cut our losses here and deliver your 10.4lb baby via c-section?  Hmmm?  How about that?  We can save you the excruciating pain of having that jumbo head stuck upside down in your pelvis FOR HOURS, save your baby the trauma of being ripped out via forceps and save you the intense recovery and utterly demoralising consequences of literally being ripped in two – from your VAGINA onwards and inwards”.

Fuck, that sounds like a plan.  I would have said. Spare me a week in hospital and countless breakdowns at home wondering if feeling in my lower spine and continence would ever return?  Hit me with that c-section I would have said. 

I guess what I’m saying is, when you’re flat on your back and the doctors are looking at each other with their Holy Shit faces on; when the surgeon on duty the day your son was born comes to your room to repeatedly apologise for what happened in theatre, you really, really do not care one iota that you can claim victory over an ‘empowering, vaginal birth‘.  Pffft.

All that you should be doing is counting your blessings that your baby was born healthy, full term and full of fatty delicious chub to help him recover from the horror of his hugely violent and undignified entry into the world.  

Because, it’s not about me anymore anyway.

 

 

The Pain of Teething

This post is sponsored by Nurofen for Children.

Nixon has had to deal with more pain in his short life than I can even imagine.  Before his diagnosis with Hirschprungs Disease, the first year of his life must have been so uncomfortable.  His inability to poop on his own meant that there was always some procedure or other we had to put him through which was pretty awful for him and us both.  He’s had doctors rummaging around in his abdomen on multiple occasions, removing the bits of his large intestine that didn’t work, replumbing him and then recovering from the whole ordeal, which took six hours in the operating room! {you can catch up on Nixon’s Hirschsprungs journey here and here}.  It almost seems cruel that after such an unusual and difficult start to life our little trooper would be hit so hard by teething pain.  Our happy-go-lucky baby was seemingly transformed overnight into a miserable, clingy, super needy little ball of tears – after a couple of days and sleepless nights I was feeling much the same way!  I knew it was teeth, he had all of the classic signs {check teething symptoms} and the only thing providing short term, temporary relief was breast-feeding.  

After Nix was taken off the opiates post-op, Nurofen was prescribed to manage his pain.  I find personally that Ibuprofen is more effective than paracetamol and I can see that the same is true for Nixon, he coped beautifully at home and we were able to keep him comfortable without too much trouble.  I medicate the kids so sparingly that sometimes I have to be reminded to do it, luckily my Mum was on hand when Nix was really beginning to struggle with his teeth and reminded me to “get that boy some medicine!”.  We fully use natural remedies when we can, I love Nixie’s amber beads, I do believe they have helped so much with his pain but some days the rumbling in his gums has just been too acute to let him suffer through.

Thankfully we are in a teething lull at the moment, but those big molars will be on the move in the next few months so we are prepared!

Visit the Nurofen for Children website for more tips on Kids Health.

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Your baby will sleep…….I promise

Baby Sleep
Thanks so much to Sovereign for sponsoring this post.  As part of their #lifetakecharge campaign Sovereign have identified sleep, along with eating well, exercise and happiness, as four essential pillars to well being and I couldn’t agree more!

Sleep (and in many cases, the lack thereof) can be all consuming, markedly more so when you are juggling your own sleep requirements with those of a baby or toddler!  Being awake {usually multiple times} in those strange, dead hours of the night is weird, it wrecks havoc on your brain and body which desperately needs rest and recovery after the physical, emotional and mental strain of welcoming your new baby.  Tending to your child with some degree of parental prowess after being screamed awake at 3am is surely one of humanities most under-rated tasks, though new parents are blessed {?} with that instant hyper-alert awakeness that only your crying child can evoke.  I’m 10 years deep in this parenting gig, and the sound of my eldest son stirring in the night can still wake me from twenty paces I kid you not.

When I think back 16 short months to Nixon’s hazy newborn days, the one thing I regret is stressing so much about how much sleep he was getting, or not getting.  With some hindsight, and a slightly less foggy brain, I have realized that his wee micro-naps of half an hour here and there suited him perfectly in that transitional first three months.  He has always been an excellent sleeper at night (except for the first month post-op) and a hyper-vigilant somewhat rubbish sleeper during the day.  Obsessing and counting the minutes he slept did nothing to help either of us move past each difficult sleep regression and milestone.
What did help in the early days was a pencil and notebook.

I started recording the basic details of his day; wake up times, feeding times, alert times, sleep times.  What emerged was a pattern that I recognised immediately as our eldest son had blissfully nursed himself to sleep for the best part of his first 6 months, every nap and every bedtime.  This worked beautifully for Ethan and I but it wasn’t working with Nixon.  I switched things around to a pattern of wake, feed, play, sleep – with only a small comfort nurse before naps and bedtimes.  This ensured that Nix went to bed awake and quickly settled himself to sleep.  Previously his hyper-vigilance would result in him waking after around 15 minutes if I popped him to bed after falling asleep while nursing.

Figuring out a daytime schedule that worked for us set us up for wonderful sleep patterns at night – mostly.  I fully believe that sleep encourages more sleep.  To this day Nix will have a disturbed, unsettled sleep at night if he has not slept well during the day.  We definitely went through some rough patches where Nixon would wake every two hours wanting to nurse back to sleep, and these nights were the  l o n g e s t  and hardest of my life.  I cried and I totally bitched at Dave because he couldn’t do a damn thing for a baby that only wanted me and my milk.  

By 9 months I knew Nixon was old enough (and I was brave enough!) to start cutting down those dreaded night feeds.  Dave and I made a plan, we woke together, watched the clock, knew how long we would let Nix attempt to settle himself and we knew what we would do if things weren’t going to plan.  Four days later and we had a baby sleeping through the night.

This all went out the window after multiple hospital stays and Nixon’s pull-through operation, but we revisited our night-time strategy and within a week, bub was back on track and we were once again getting an acceptable amount of sleep.

As I mentioned previously, getting Nix to sleep during the day used to cause me so much anxiety.  It’s taken 16 months but I’ve pretty much got it under control, this week anyway!  Before naptime we read a book, change Nixon’s nappy, get the cot and sleep sac ready, pull the blind and settle down for a quick breast-feed in the same spot.  Every.  Single.  Time.  Nixon knows what’s going on, there are no surprises and sleep usually follows.  

Finding a good routine is hard, and trying to adhere to one can sometimes make you feel like a big, boring stickler, but I truly believe that a consistent routine helps babies, toddlers and big kids sleep and sleep well.  

Bon nuit xx

 

 

Acquisitions | Little Noggi Meraki Hat in Clover

 

Instagram is bad news brown for little love-to-shop Mamas like myself.  I can’t remember how I stumbled upon Little Noggi but I’m SO glad I did.  I purchased Nixie’s first, reversible Little Noggi hat in an Instagram sale and I won this beautiful lined style by naming it ‘Clover’.  how awesome is it????  Hats are extremely hard to photograph and my toddling model has been very uncooperative, so I hope you can in some teeny way appreciate how insanely beautiful these wee hats are.  They are quite simply, the most gorgeous pieces of clothing I have ever purchased.  No lie.  

I love to support hard-working Mumma businesses and with products this special it’s a no-brainer, did you see the packaging? Swoon.

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A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2014.”

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ethan:  back on your skateboard both days this weekend!  dad has set you up a wide old school santa cruz deck and you’re loving it!  after losing much of your summer to a fractured ankle from a skateboarding accident we really didn’t know if you’d ever be keen to skate again, but you are, and we’re stoked that you’re stoked x

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nixon: a better week at home, you are healing well and we are slowly getting to grips with your new hyperactive bowel {one day i changed your nappy 7 times before 12pm!}.  most days you are still sneaking in two naps but this is becoming a bit erratic so we’re both making the most of  your snoozy baby-ness while it lasts.

linking with www.practisingsimplicity.com

 

Cool Stuff | Little Ones Care Pack

It’s a fact.  I can’t resist mystery packs that arrive in the mail.

I spied these gorgeous Care Packs around and about on various social media over the past few weeks so when Little & Loved posted a coupon code on their FB page I had to jump on the bandwagon and get amongst the goodness.

Care Pack is a monthly subscription service, delivering a box of curated product to your door for a flat rate including shipping.  Choose between the Care Pack, The Little Ones Pack or The Mum to Be Pack, starting from $30 per month {subscriptions can be cancelled at any time}.

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The Little Ones’s Pack was tailored to Nixie’s age and gender and I was stoked to see a pair of Lamington Merino Socks (RRP$15.95) included, I have been wanting a pair of these for the Little General for ages!  The Rainbow Ribbon book is a wonderfully sweet board book and the Kiwigarden Yoghurt Drops are a hit with both my 1 year old and 9 year old – will be buying these again for sure.

So looking forward to trying out the other products in the days to come – how cute is that little wooden Hape boat?

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PS. NOT a sponsored post, just wanted to share x

Hello Nixon | 8 Months

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Wowsers.  That was a hard month boy {hence post is 20 days late, pic was on time though!}.  No lie.  We have both been sick, you have another tooth {and more on the way} and you somehow managed to sleep through and IN your first epic power chuck yesterday – go you!

We’re pretty sure you’ve decided crawling is not for you.  You are pulling yourself up on all sorts of dangerous things now so I expect that one of these days, you’ll just up and head for the fridge and some bacon. You find commando crawling speedy and efficient PLUS you can still carry things in your paws whilst on the move {like your bros wooden sword or the vacuum cleaner handle – your #1 fave}.  I can’t actually believe I got pics of you this month, I got ONE shot of you on your back so I am thrilled it was in focus.  Notice anything different?  Yes, you are in cloth diapers!  Two things have happened this month that I had previously said I would never do, one of them being using cloth diapers.  It’s actually easy-peasy and I wish we had started earlier.

Man, you love quinoa and chicken.  This is good.  You also love the dogs and your brother and you slept through the night last night for the first time in well over a month.  I love you even more today sweet-baby-sleeper.  You now clap your hands whenever you are happy, usually when you see your Nana, and your conversation skills consist solely of raspberry after raspberry.

You are the baddest little baby I know, your love for Crown Lynn and eating rocks knows no bounds, your other favourite things are electrical cables, dog tails, dog bowls, smartphones and sunglasses.  There is currently a moratorium on toy-buying  as you prefer stuff that isn’t yours and is preferably breakable.

I just don’t know where this year has gone.  It makes me so happy to sit on your bedroom floor and watch you play and learn, somedays I really don’t do much else.  When you reach out for me with your chubby little arms time does stop though; everything stops and it’s just me inhaling you and being/doing/giving you whatever it is you want or need.

Love, Mama