A letter to myself…

This phase won’t last forever, but how you choose to respond right now, may affect their ‘forever’.

Feeling touched out, constantly needed, forever interrupted, unable to properly care for yourself, counting the hours until bedtime and THEN…your child won’t go to sleep.

Oh the frustration. The squelched anticipation. The feeling of being robbed of your time. Of your evening. Of your SELF.

You find yourself firmly laying down some rules, threatening lost privileges and tricking them into going to sleep on their own, with bribery.

But that one night, when they turn around and  tell you that actually they are frightened. That they only feel safe at bedtime if you are with them. That they have a painful sicky feeling in their chest from the worry they are feeling. Wow. You’ve got to listen to that, right?

The frustration is still there for sure, but really…what’s a few minutes knocked off your evening when your six year old needs your help to feel safe? It is surely worth avoiding an hour to two hour long battle if you sit with them for 15 minutes to help to feel calm.

You know what? It won’t break them. It won’t make them ‘too soft’. They won’t need you there forever. But what they will know is that you LISTEN to their needs. You CARE about their feelings. You WANT to help them. And that’s pretty powerful stuff for a child to grow up knowing.

Mama. This won’t last forever. In fact, it’s going to be gone in the blink of an eye. But how you choose to respond can affect their ‘forever’. It can shape their being. It can influence how they cope and deal with their feelings, even in the distant future.

In a world where mental health struggles are soaring and where male suicide rates are at an all time high, you have to take these cries for help, support and encouragement seriously. You have to take the, sometimes frustrating, route to reach the end of a troublesome path and guide them through. You have to let them know you are listening, will listen and will always be there to listen.

You must listen.

It’s not forever Mama, but you sure can shape it.

Lucy

X

You got this Mama, even when you feel like you don’t

MOTHERHOOD
*You got this Mama, even when you feel like you don’t*

This photograph popped up on my Facebook memories. An exhausted Mama and a 17 day old baby. My friend had come to see us and this is what she got to hang out with.
I had a chicken pox ridden 2 year old absolutely covered in itchy, painful spots and little did I know, Rocco would end up with it at 4 weeks and we were both in for a stay in hospital for IV antivirals.
Rex had just finished his paternity leave, Christmas and New Year had been and gone in a whirlwind of illness and exhaustion and we had only left the house about 3 times since he had been born.
I was a mess in more ways than one. Physically in pain post birth and on top of that, those breastfeeding fake contractions they neglect to tell you about!! 👀
Emotionally all over the place with my attention constantly divided between my poorly toddler and my needy newborn.
Exhausted through lack of sleep and claustrophobic with cabin fever and always being needed by someone.
But Mamas…you know what? Things changed. The boys got older and I actually missed those midnight cuddles from Rocco. We got through the illness, the chickenpox, the gallbladder removal, the hospital stays, the constant need to be touched (ok, ok, that still happens some days).
Motherhood isn’t easy.
Motherhood is full on and ugly at times.
Motherhood can make your heart feel like bursting with pride, whilst simultaneously breaking for your children when they are going through rough times.
But to those Mamas in the newborn stages – it is ok to not feel like you are enjoying every moment, like you feel you should. It’s normal to crave time to yourself and to hide in a cupboard to get a minutes peace. There will be days that your children decide to get on and you can drink a hot cup of tea and maybe sneak a biscuit. You won’t fall asleep on your friends when they visit and you will have days when you laugh so much you cry (there will also be days where you cry so much you laugh!)
Surround yourself with good people. Get out to the baby groups and have the courage to talk to other people. You need each other!
You got this Mama! Even when you feel like you don’t.
♥️
Lucy

(Originally posted on our Insta page)

Botley the robot review!

We were thrilled to be sent the wonderful Botley from Learning Resources UK who are based in Norfolk. Initially we were asked to feedback to them how the boys got on, but we loved it so much I thought it would be helpful to our readers to have a more in depth review on here…so here it is!

WHO IS BOTLEY?!

Botley is our new family pet! Well, technically he is a robot, but he’s so cute and very loved, so from here on in, we are considering him a pet that won’t get us in trouble if we leave him in a box for a few days!
In reality, he is a coding robot who is clever, cute, educational, challenging, fun and captured the boys’ attention before we had even taken him out of the box. We loved how he was peeping out at us when we opened the front flap of the box – a lovely touch!

Botley peeking out of his box!

WHAT DOES BOTLEY DO?

Botley has two settings: ‘Code’ and ‘Line’.

Change the settings underneath Botley.

LINE MODE:
On line mode, Botley can follow a black line using a sensor underneath him. There are some puzzle type card squares in the box that are white with a black wiggly line on one side. Botley will follow this line until he gets to the end, when he turns around and follows it back again. The boys enjoy moving the pieces once Botley has travelled over them to see how long they can keep him going for. You can also make your own course for Botley with white card and a pen. This is something we are yet to do, so more fun is yet to be had on this mode!

Line mode.

CODE MODE:
On code mode, Botley will move anywhere you tell him to go. There are 4 directional buttons on the handy sized remote: forward, back, rotate right and rotate left. There is also a late transmit button for when you are ready to send the instructions to Botley.
This mode can be where children can be challenged at different levels.
Once confident with manoeuvring Botley, your child can set or be set certain challenges. There are some in the booklet that come with Botley, or you can come up with your own.
Botley also has OBJECT DETECTION, meaning children can start to learn the principle of ‘if/then’, so you can tell Botley to do something, but in the same piece of coding, you can tell him what to do if he sees an object. This is a bit more challenging for children and it was something that my eldest (age 6) was able to grasp, but at the moment is a little bit over my nearly 4 year old’s head.
Another feature in this mode is the LOOP button. For this feature you can tell Botley to follow the same instructions more than once.
You can go all out on CODE mode and use CODING, OBJECT DETECTION and LOOP all at the same time to further the challenge!

Botley’s remote is the perfect size for little hands!

WHAT’S IN THE BOX?

As well as Botley, you receive a 77 piece accessory set including hands for Botley, balls for him to carry, flags for him to travel around and in and out of, a ‘goal’ hoop, double sided puzzle card type pieces for Botley to travel around on, code cards to remind you what instructions you have programmed, blocks and sticks to create courses and a really well written instruction booklet with lots of hints and tips.

Challenging Botley to score a goal!

HIDDEN FEATURES

If you look in the booklet and on the Learning Resources website, you will find a couple of sneaky Easter Eggs. For example, you can make Botley say his name, say hello and get super dizzy amongst other things. The boys LOVE these hidden features and already remember some of the coding for them!

WHAT WE LOVE

What’s not to love? We all really enjoy playing with Botley and seeing what we can do.
Personally I love the different levels of challenge that Botley can provide as the children grow and learn.
The children love how cute Botley is and challenging themselves to try new things and they really enjoy the hidden features.

ANY ROOM FOR IMPROVEMENT?

As a coding toy, we think Botley is pretty fantastic, however if we were to suggest anything it would be a cut back in the amount of plastic. Botley is obviously made of plastic, but also inside the cardboard box, he is housed in plastic which could maybe be reconsidered?

WOULD WE RECOMMEND BOTLEY TO YOU?

Absolutely!

I really hope this review has been helpful to anyone who may be considering a coding toy or even a Botley for their children. Please do get in touch if you have any questions that I have not covered in this review!

Lucy

What do you do?

What do you do?

I am a Mother.

I am a professional debater, negotiator and mediator.
I am a referee.
I am a personal shopper, a launderette and a cleaner.
I am a meal planner, a recipe maker and a chef.
I am a Google taught nurse, a doctor, a diagnoser and a prescriber of Calpol.
I am a P.A.
I am a taxi driver, a chauffeur and a sit-in-the-car-while-they-play-football-in-the-dark kinda cabbie.
I am an agony aunt.
I am a shoulder to cry on, a punch bag to let out anger on and a hug when they need it the most.
I am a party planner and a caterer.
I am a time keeper, a weather woman and a travel agent for days out and holidays.
I am a teacher of Mathematics, English, Geography, History and Languages to name a few.
I am a teacher of life.
I am a role model, a guide and a mentor.
I am a leader.
I am a crafter, a creator, a maker and a make believer.
I’m an actor, a singer, a do-a-silly-dancer and an author.
I am a planner, a thinker, a giver and a do-er.
I am an encourager, a reassurer and a ‘you can do it’ proclaimer.
I am an advisor.
I am a protector.
I am a shield.
I am a one woman army fighting for a good cause.
I am just a full time Mum at the moment.
I am all of these things.
I am Mummy.
I am Mum.
I am.

I am a Mother.

Mother’s Day

I have posted this on my personal Facebook page, but wanted to share the sentiment with my followers on here too:

Happy Mother’s Day to my lovely friends. I’m taking the opportunity to share this again …

To my friends who are Mothers, I hope you are treated today. I’m celebrating with you.

To my friends who have their Mothers, be thankful today. I am thankful like you.

To my friends who long to be Mothers, I hope you have hope today. I’m praying for you.

To my friends who are Mothers to babies and children whose lives were far too short, or who have lost their Mothers, have strength and courage. My heart breaks for you.

To my friends who are Mothers but are struggling to ‘enjoy every moment’, I see you. I hope today your spirits are lifted and you can find joy in the small things.

To my friends who are doing this journey of Motherhood alone, you are real life superheroes. My hope is that today you will know that and will be showered in love by your little people.

I am so aware now more than ever that today is lovely for some and so hard for others (sometimes even a mix of the two). My biggest hope is that all of my friends know and are shown love today (and every other day!)

Love

Lucy
Xxx