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Blogs

Blogs

Parenting is hard. There is no easy road. No easy solutions. So who are you supposed to turn to when you feel lonely or overwhelmed? Where should you look for real parenting advice and stories?  Well at ParentChum our blogs have been written by everyday parents who have a passion for sharing their stories; with tips and advice on everything from labour and birth to being a single parent! Take a look at some of our latest posts below.

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Approaching the Big 40 as a Parent

After a pleasantly surprising Indian Summer, Autumn is now upon us and brings with it an undeniable drop in temperature as the nights draw in, the leaves start to fall, and we find ourselves on an official countdown of festivities (Halloween, Guy Fawkes, Christmas...) to the end of what has felt like the longest, weirdest year in history. For me it also signifies the last few weeks of my 30s as I rapidly approach the big 4-0.

05 Oct 2020

Twin Mum Anxiety

I think as parents of twins we definitely experience heightened anxiety. I think as much as we prepare while we are pregnant the reality of bringing home two tiny babies can suddenly hit us and the worry kicks in. However after speaking to many twin mums this seems totally normal so there is my first tip, I promise it’s not just you.

10 Sep 2020

My infertility story

My infertility story started in 2010 when we TTC naturally. Unfortunately I don’t ovulate and I don’t get a period on my own so our next step was fertility treatments. We did an IUI and got SO lucky. We ended up with triplets! Although we were blessed we also had to have a reduction for medical reasons (basically for the health of our babies and my life). So we underwent a reduction. Very hard to do but we know we made the right choice.

11 Jul 2020

Trying to conceive & ovulation tracking

Ok, so in this blog I am sharing our TTC and ovulation journey and how myself and my wife Amy tracked my ovulation during this time! For reference we started tracking my ovulation in late June and fell pregnant at the start of November on our second attempt of AI using a donor. The first stage of us trying was for me to go and have some tests done (blood tests and a scan of my uterus, ovaries etc).

16 Jun 2020

My Low Papp A story

At 12 weeks I was sent a letter from the hospital advising that recent tests had shown my baby had Low Papp A. I wrote a blog about how I felt, the information and stories I had read about and how I was dealing with the news. But I didn’t write my full experience....

09 Jun 2020

Top tips for continual learning as a parent

To keep constantly learning is one of the most powerful things you can do. It not only improves your knowledge but will enhance your options in life and will help open more doors. Unfortunately it has taken me 30 years to realise this, and now I am on a mission to keep learning and growing everyday and am encouraging others to do the same.

07 May 2020

Indoor lockdown activity ideas for the kids

We’re now all facing weeks, possibly months of being at home in a bid to evade a total collapse of our health service and country as a whole. So what do you do when you have small humans with limited space and public areas are off limits?! Throw the little ones some snacks, give them some screen time, make yourself a brew and read on for some fun indoor activities that will keep your little people busy.

25 Mar 2020

I will never grow out of your childhood

“One day you will grow out of wanting to sing and dance to nursery rhymes. The same repetitive songs that make you clap with joy and shout “again! again!” But I will never grow out of seeing the way you laugh and how your eyes shine as I start on my millionth rendition of “if you’re happy and you know it”.

09 Mar 2020

My IVF journey - from start to finish!

After months and months of no luck getting pregnant, things started to get to ‘that stage’ - you know the stage where you become obsessed; testing monthly, checking your ovulation on apps and sticks, crying when you see birth announcements etc.

09 Mar 2020

My birth & NICU with twins

I am generally quite open on my Instagram account, but there is one thing I haven’t shared that I have been asked about quite a lot, which is ‘my birth story’ I have always been fascinated by birth stories and TV programmes such as 'One Born Every Minute'; thinking how incredible women are, and wondering how would my birth would go; if I was ever lucky enough to get pregnant.

29 Feb 2020

Bronchitis & Boys

My little Jasper is a Bronchitis sufferer, which is kind of crazy as his twin brother Ralph is as fit as a fiddle! I’ve found with every episode that Jasper has had, each one has got progressively worse. The first was at 8 weeks, this tiny little sole so so poorly and there was me feeling helpless and in despair.

27 Feb 2020

What type of Mum are you?

A few days ago I saw a post which a friend shared on Facebook. It really upset me. Now the post was not of injured animals or a censored post. It was simply asking in a jokey way, what type of Mum are you? It listed 7 types of Mum. From the Hippy Mum to the Social Mum, it listed different ‘types’ and characteristics. You have probably seen the very post.

23 Feb 2020

Some of the things that I have learnt since having a baby

I've learnt a fair few things since becoming a mum for the first time and having my first child! But there are 6 main things that stand out to me the most, that have changed me as a person since becoming a parent.

06 Feb 2020

The NOT so terrible two’s

I know that all children can have extreme tantrums when they’re exhausted, which is why I want to discuss this picture of my sweet son! This is him directly after he had a 20 minute EXPLOSION because of the simple fact that he is two.

06 Feb 2020

Cesarean birthing - the good, the bad, the myths

Yes I picked to have a cesarean, and would I do it again? HELL YES! Cesarean's are often met with fear, judgements, and a lot of myths, but let me tell you, my experience was the best birth I could have asked for! So now I'm going to share with you the good, the bad, and the myths about having a c-section...

01 Feb 2020

Letting our kids be who they are and bending gender norms

When I was little, my Grandfather used to ask me, “Why can’t boys wear dresses, but girls can wear pants?”, and I would respond simply, “because that’s the way it is!”. And in my mind, from what I had experienced and been taught, this was true - boys wear pants, girls wear dresses; boys like cars, girls like dolls.

01 Feb 2020

How 10 rounds of IVF affected my mental health

Apologies in advance for the length of this blog! Once I start talking about my experience I cannot stop; I'm so passionate about helping people through their IVF journey if I can. We discovered that we were unable to conceive naturally, so we decided to embark on the IVF route. I had 9 rounds of IVF, one of which put me in hospital with a mild case of hyper stimulation.

26 Jan 2020

20 Questions from a new Mummy to a new Daddy

Hi! I’m Tash and I’m about to ask my husband, Leigh, 20 questions about our recent pregnancy, labour and the arrival of our baby – I’ve promised he will not be in the doghouse for any of his answers(!). We had a baby girl in November 2019 who we named Georgie.

11 Jan 2020

Top tips for taking baby swimming for the first time

Firstly, as a new parent, you might wonder what is the right age to take your baby swimming. I was one of those parents so I did tons of research to make sure I was doing it right. Opinions differed so much from one source to another, which is when I realised that this is one of those things that should be up to the parents themselves.

05 Jan 2020

Can loneliness lead to postnatal depression?

Do you know five mums? Chances are that one of them struggles with post-natal depression (PND). I bet you know more like 50 mums. So that's 10 struggling with PND or another mental health issue. Do you know who they are? I bet you don't. Not because you're a bad friend. But because PND isn't something we generally talk about.

02 Jan 2020

4 ways to prevent your baby choking

Fact: many parents are so worried about the possibility of their baby choking that they are reluctant to introduce lumps or finger foods into their baby’s diet. I should know – they've told me themselves. The most important thing for parents to know about choking is that it’s largely preventable.

01 Jan 2020

My experiences as a first, second and third time mum

As a first time mum nine and a half years ago, I remember looking down at my new baby boy and  thinking 'OK so now what do I do?' I’d been so caught up with pregnancy and birth I hadn’t quite thought about the responsibility I now had for another little human. 

31 Dec 2019

4 months sleep regression

From day one Hunter has been amazing with sleeping which has been a god send. I was at a point where I would hate talking about his sleep to other parents as they would all say how they'd been up half the night and there was me getting a good nights sleep. I’d just stay quiet until someone would ask how my night was and I’d simply answer "yes was fine thanks" as I felt bad for the fact my child was sleeping.

18 Dec 2019

Dear me, we got this: what I’ve learnt

With a gulp of my new Christmassy-tasting Chai tea, the Christmas tree lights sparkling in the corner of my left eye, our new family pictures above my head, on our wall in our (small, but cosy) new place… I’m hit with a welcoming feeling of contentment as I realise, I’m in my happy place. And I’m ready. So here goes…

18 Dec 2019

Surviving tongue tie, weight loss and bleeding nips – A successful breastfeeding story

I’d never heard of tongue tie before having my second child, Adam. Shortly after he was born, he had his first feed. My midwives gushed over how amazing his latch was and how long he fed for and I thought.....I’ve nailed it this time! My baby is a natural!

18 Dec 2019

Christmas present pressure for Mums & Dads

With less than 10 days left until the big day, what should be time spent enjoying festive activities with family and friends, can often be filled with stress, parent guilt and self doubt. Whether you’re a millionaire or only have two pennies to rub together, the pressure of buying Christmas presents is hard to avoid, and nothing tops the pressure of a parent buying for their children.

17 Dec 2019

My baby's life-threatening Strep B infection that triggered SEPSIS

On June 20th 2019 at 12:30am I lost my show and began very early stages of labour. I had mild contractions until around 5:30am, at which point they stopped. At 7:30am I called the hospital as I couldn’t feel much movement from my baby. They called me in and monitored me for 1.5 hours. We found the heartbeat but the doctor saw me and said he’d like to induce me that day at 15:30pm.

16 Dec 2019

The early days of motherhood - tounge tie and extended breastfeeding

When I fell pregnant with my daughter in 2018 I didn't really think about how I was going to feed her. Sounds so silly now when I read that back!! I went out and got all the usual bits you need for a newborn; clothes, nappies, a cot etc.(little did I know she was never going to sleep in it), a buggy and finally a starter feeding kit with bottles and a steriliser.

16 Dec 2019

Two under 2

In August 2018 I gave birth to a beautiful baby girl having undergone IVF treatment in 2017. I was completely in love and felt completely lucky to have her after just one round of treatment. Surprisingly not long after having her, people were asking me would I have another. Sex was the last thing on my mind, but also the option of having a second child was a big question mark for us.

10 Dec 2019

The reality of ‘mat leave’ and owning your own business

Elly Simmons, is the director of Herringbone Kitchens, a family run, progressive and exciting bespoke kitchen design and manufacturer based in Canterbury. She officially joined her husband William in 2016 to revamp the marketing strategy and make it the social media success it is today. Elly is a mother to 4-year-old Freddie two-week-old Finnley.

04 Dec 2019

A year ago today

From the shock of finding out I was pregnant with Chops to now being half a parent to a 1 year old. Seeing those double red lines on that first pregnancy test to realising my whole life was about to change. This is my journey to becoming a Mum.

03 Dec 2019

Our most and least used baby items

As a first time parent I am aware of the large amount of information that is out there regarding the ‘recommended’ things that parents need to buy for their babies. In a way parents feel obliged to get the countless items as they don’t know any different.

26 Nov 2019

For days when nothing goes to plan

I am sure most if not all parents have gone through phases, where they feel like they are struggling to cope and everything is just getting on top of them; whether it is caused by teething, sleep regression, jabs or anything else that parents face in their parenting journey.

17 Nov 2019

My PND story

In November 2017 I gave birth to my beautiful daughter Isabelle and felt a love like I never knew was possible. I had a good birth for a first time mum and was able to come home the following evening from hospital to start our new life as mum and dad!

28 Oct 2019

Low PAPP-A in pregnancy

Thursday we received our screening results for our baby, we were so pleased that it said low risk for Down’s Syndrome and Edwards Syndrome. We spent the evening looking at Spencer’s baby journal and trying to figure out if we were having a boy or a girl.

16 Sep 2019

10 things I swore I'd never do as a mum.....

Okay here are 10 things I swore i'd never do as a Mum until I became a Mum.......and my thoughts on the actual parenting stuff, like rules and consequences, and basically just every day life.

01 Sep 2019

Being pregnant: then vs now

Pregnancy brings with it, huge changes to your life, especially if you’re about to have your first baby. Some women cope with these changes comfortably, whilst others can find it harder. There is no right or wrong; everybody is different.

31 Aug 2019

To the mum struggling through 'the fourth trimester'

I can’t tell you how many times after I had my daughter I was asked if I was enjoying motherhood, how many people cooed over her whilst telling me that they grow so fast and to enjoy this time because it’s gone in the blink of an eye. Guilt. It’s the strongest feeling I remember from that time.

30 Aug 2019

Chronic anxiety & IVF

On 28th January 2012 my world changed forever. I lost my first home, my comfort and my best friend. I was 22 when my mum died. We cared for her at home, (which is something I still struggle to talk about), until she took her very last breath. She was finally at peace. And my heart was broken.

28 Aug 2019

My positive birth story

Like most first time mums, I’d imagined many, many times what giving birth would be like. Although some factors changed, like how my waters would break, where I’d be, how long labour would last.

25 Aug 2019

Where would I be without my children?

Sitting on a beach without a care in the world probably. It's no secret, I never wanted children when I was younger, I was adamant I would never have them. Then along came my son, a complete surprise and everything changed, fast forward two years and I have a daughter....and I want more, at least 2 more.

23 Aug 2019

Postpartum mental health

The photo you see is the first ever photo of me and Charlie. I’d been through a whirlwind of a labour. I went from thinking I’d have a natural labour to being rushed to theatre for an emergency c section. Charlie was refusing to come out and his heart rate was increasing as well as mine.

21 Aug 2019

My IVF journey

“I think you’d benefit from fertility treatment”- not a phrase I ever thought I’d hear at 26 years old. We had been married a year and had been trying for just over that time to get pregnant, so going to the doctors for tests just seemed like the natural next step.

16 Aug 2019

Telling your employer you're pregnant

Telling your employer you’re pregnant can be really daunting....it shouldn’t, but Sandy know's from experience how nerve wracking it can be! So she decided to put together a few tips to ensure it doesn't become something that keeps you up at night.

04 Aug 2019

Dealing with being a single parent

I’ll never forget the moment that I realised my whole life had changed. Just 10 weeks ago I was about to embark on the most exciting journey of my life, one I’d waited 9 months for. I had the brightest future ahead as a happy family with a lovely baby. And then all of a sudden it was gone.....

01 Aug 2019