BEING A STAY AT HOME MUM

There is a common misconception when it comes to being a stay at home mum. For some reason, there seem to be people who confuse being a stay at home mum with having an “easy” or “stress free” life. We are often put into the category of “not needing to work because we can afford it”, and we are often undervalued by society.

Thought patterns about being a stay at home mum seem to go along the lines of being able to sleep in, relax all day and pretty much just fart arse around to our hearts’ content. People often categorise being a stay at home mum as easy, because, well, we’re at home, right?

I couldn’t be more proud of my baby girl! I love being a stay at home mum for now, even though there are many tough days. It’s all worth it and I am so grateful to be able to spend every day with her!

Generally speaking, a day in the life of a stay at home mum goes something along the lines of professional flapping about like a headless chicken when baby sleeps, while trying to get the house in order after the last 2 hours of trying to entertain and stimulate an 8-month-old. You’d be surprised just how messy things can get. Crumbs on the floor, broccoli under the couch, spew on the blanket, toys scattered everywhere for tummy time/play time.

In between dodging certain obstacles, namely play chairs, high chairs, bouncing chairs, and play mats, comes the daily adventures of trying to teach baby how to crawl, stand and play. While doing this, come the tasks of making fresh food from scratch, dealing with tantrums, soothing a screaming teething baby, trying to remain level headed when your house is upside down with an occasional trip to Turkey (tripping over things) because you didn’t have enough time to pick up the damn sippie cup, before a certain pair of eyes resurfaced after a 10-minute nap.

Certain objects that one tends to trip over/dodge on a daily basis. Generally during times of panic and rushing around LOL!

As exhausting as this may sound, the majority of this happens before 9am because our day starts at 6am. Oh yes, bright eyed and bushy tailed! And heaven forbid you’ve had a “sleepless” night before all of this, waking up every hour because of your little one’s sleep regression. Tough luck pal! You’re in for a real treat today!

Along with being a stay at home mum, comes a sense of essentially running the household. This means doing chores that you once thought you’d escaped when you were 16 years old. Balancing the laundry, a clean home, dinner, happy baby, and my absolute favourite – “popping” out for the weekly shopping trip. Yes, this is all part of adulating, BUT when you have a little one, doing these become a priority every day, otherwise you would be kicking yourself in the foot, being in an unorganized house. Basically, it is essential that you have your shit together. Survival is key, my friends.

Potentially speaking, all of this resembles feelings similar to the ones when you realise that you’re possibly lactating in public – a moment which could be somewhat soul destroying or soul building. Very similar feels to motherhood, yes. There are fabulous days where everything runs as smoothly as your favourite peanut butter, or where things go absolutely balls to the walls and gives the term “tits up” a whole new meaning.

Those ongoing chores. At least i’m doing them with a smile in this picture though LOL!

This all comes before doing anything for yourself, might I add. My personal favourite is trying to balance daily exercising to lose my baby weight, because let’s be honest, a few kg’s lighter could possibly make one a little more aerodynamic for mentioned household chores and moments of wild flapping, trying to get things done.

And just when you finally thought that your little one had nodded off comes the horror of hearing a squeak subtly loud enough to let you know that “I’M STILL AWAKE” or the long winded nap time tantrums. These are always fun when you’re at your wits end on a tough day.

Oh, the daily nap tantrums that go down – as pictured here. These are always fun.

When I do very rarely have a moment of silence, I try my best to blog and study for my final year of university. I absolutely LOVE being a stay at home mum for now. I have no idea how I’m going to feel when I have to put Harper in day-care when I return back to work.

Being a stay at home mum teaches you so much about yourself. You get to know the exact amount of coffee it takes to get yourself feeling like a Fabulous Fred, ready to take on the world, a baby and a household. You learn that it’s okay to be in your pyjamas for most of the day while sprinting around the house to get shit done. You understand that it’s okay to answer the door in one sock, child on your hip and hair funky enough to hold chopsticks in place when mail arrives.

The truth about being a stay at home mum is that it is the furthest thing from easy. As with any day job, it tests your patience. It can be tiring, and it is challenging. We often don’t get a break during the day and we generally walk around like zombies, but my oh my, do we get to experience and take in all of the new things that our little ones learn and do in a day.

We get to be there to experience many firsts!

A loving moment of sharing a cuddle with your bub or making them smile is so valuable. Being there at hand for their first-time experiences are indescribably rewarding in so many ways. There are days where running around seem endless, and the feeling of accomplishing nothing can sometimes get you down, but our purpose of being stay at home mums for the stage of life that we are in is enriching and precious. And to the mums who are doing this with more than 1 kid or who are single working mums and working mums, you are such bloody heroes.

We are all doing our best. We are all warriors. And our kids love us. They look forward to seeing our faces, first thing in the morning and they know hard to push our buttons.

But most importantly, they love us hard. And we are appreciated.

Well done, mamma! Keep doing an amazing job!

Until next time,

Mycaila – Jade
xxx

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ECO PERSONAL CARE BY NATY

Being squeaky clean, should always be on the top of your list. A shower a day keeps the stinkyness at bay!

With that in mind, my husband and I have recently been trying to make a joint effort at being eco-friendlier. We have since introduced these eco-friendly ways into our daily hygiene, being conscious of the products that we use.

If you have been reading my blog for a while, you will know that our daughter has been using the most divine eco-friendly range from Naty (Eco by Naty). Naty are a Swedish company, dedicated to being waste free and have designed a beautiful extensive baby range from nappies, nappy bags, all sorts of baby toiletries to eco-friendly clothes!

Naty always leaves Harpers bum as happy as can be, so with that in mind, my husband and I gave the Naty Adult range a try. Parents have to have some spoils too, right?

We have the Naty shampoo, shower gel and body lotion.

A lovely family photo!

The first thing that I noticed is that all of these products are packaged in waste friendly bottles, with beautiful branding that’s simple, yet elegant. Who wants to look at unattractive bottles anyway? Respect for the eyeballs really goes a long way!

husband and I both really liked the shower gel, its smooth, fresh, and a little goes a long way. To me, the shower gel has a beautifully light rosey scent. Its super subtle, but its definitely there. Robbie said that he thought it smelt foresty, but this is also the same person who thinks that strawberries smell like apples.

Robbie loved the shampoo. He found it to lather really easily and left his hair as soft as Harpers bottom. I found that the shampoo worked quite well. I have EXTREMELY damaged hair from years of highlighting. I often buy salon quality shampoo ranges specifically for blonde/damaged hair which are extra conditioning and give my hair some serious TLC. As far as my damaged hair goes, my hair was left feeling dry, but I can only guess that it’s because there are no bad chemicals, parabens, or mineral oils. However, when brushing my hair wet, it was totally fine where my hair has grown out, but when I brought my hairbrush down to my highlighted hair, it didn’t brush through very easily. This tells me that if I had an entire head of natural colour free hair, that this shampoo would’ve been superb, especially being friendly to our planet and waste free. Robbie and I both loved the scent – very similar to the shower gel, just a little stronger, in a yummy way!

I absolutely LOVED the body lotion. It smells like a bottle full of sweets! How delicious! One of the mumma bloggers Gill from ChatsWithGill, that I regularly interact with and follow was recommending this lotion to her audience, and now that I have tried it, I TOTALLY understand why! The lotion formula is smooth and again, a teeny bit goes a long way. The bottle also has a pump lid, making it easy to apply and scoosh out. I’d absolutely recommend this!

All in all, the Naty Adult range is really an amazing one to try, simply for its eco-friendly, chemical free, oil free, pollution free ethos. So many things FREE!

It’s also a priority of Naty’s to be cruelty free, which is a major bonus in my books as I really am making a slow move in that direction. I truly love everything that this company stands for after using both their baby range and adult range of body care/hygiene products.

Until next time,

Mycaila – Jade

xxx

FITNESS UPDATE: MY POSTPARTUM WEIGHT LOSS JOURNEY MARCH 2018

This month has been an amazing month of testing my boundaries with eating chocolate (because Easter), starting a new fitness class, making friends (which might or might not have resulted in a day of cocktail drinking and a disgustingly delicious Italian pasta meal), and of course, a month of yet again wearing my lycra gym pants 5/7 days of the week because of the much-loved spandex benefits.

If you remember my brave decision as of last month to finally ditch the bloody scale because we weren’t really seeing eye to eye, then you’d have probably guessed that YES, I was of course close to a little pants piddle when tallying up my results from the last 30 days with my monthly weigh in and measurements. The main thoughts running through my mind were “Have you managed to pull this off?” and “Heavens above, please don’t let the scale defeat me”. Having not checked in on my results weekly as I normally would have kind of left me off track, not really knowing what to expect.

4th March vs 4th April

Although my results aren’t happening as fast as they once did before, I am reaping the rewards in other ways. I started this journey as a size 18 and have bought my first pair of size 16 jeans during the month of March. I also have a few items of clothing that I set as short term “goals” to fit into. These were mainly tops/coats that were too tight around my arms, but now fit. Yay!

One size down in my new jeans named after Harper! Yay!

MARCH’S WEIGHT LOSS TOTAL

Although, the scale says I have only lost 1.6kg this month, my measuring tape says otherwise, with a MUCH more positive attitude. I am 9.5cm down in total around my body for March.

TOTAL CM LOST AS OF 4 JANUARY TO 4 MARCH:

March has been a great month of movement as I have started an aerobics fitness class twice a week, followed by a bums and tums class straight afterwards. These classes burn an average of 850 calories twice a week, which KILLS me, being 1hr and 15min total, but it is so worth it and is a fun way to do cardio.

My daily goal at the moment is to burn 500 calories worth of exercise a day. Monday, Wednesday and Friday are weight training focused exercise days and Tuesday and Thursday are aerobics classes cardio.

I am going to start encouraging myself to be a little less lenient when it comes to weekend wine, as it is Robbie’s birthday next month and I’d like to wear something feminine and flowy and hopefully in a size smaller.

4th January (left) vs 4th April (right)

I’m looking forward to the next month of this journey, and hopefully a smaller Mycaila will be writing to you from behind the computer screen next month!

Keep those bottoms moving, heart rates up and calories down!

Until next time,

Mycaila – Jade

 

ORGANIC BABY BATH & BODY CARE | NATY

Nothing beats watching your little one splash about in a bubble bath, splishing and splashing with their rubber duck, and being squeaky clean after all the fun has been had. If baby comes out happy at the end, then as parents, we’re all winning at life, and chances are, your little one will get a good nights rest. A warm bath works wonders!

We have been testing out the Organic baby bath and body care range from our favorite eco-friendly Swedish brand, Naty. This range is fabulous as it is quite extensive. The baby bath range includes body wash, bubble bath and shampoo. The baby body range includes body lotion and nappy rash cream.

All of these products are organic, plant based and gentle enough for daily use. This is also an award winning baby care range and is cruelty free (my favorite part!).

The baby body wash and baby lotion both come with pump lids, making it easy to use when you are on the go with bath time and afterwards. Two pumps of each is also PLENTY for your baby’s body. Both baby shampoo and baby body wash lather up a storm. I absolutely love that about the baby shampoo as this makes it easier to see it on your baby’s head, which avoids getting some in their eyes. Strange point to make, but I’d hate to experience any baby getting shampoo or body wash in their tiny little eyes. Oh, the squeals and crying. If it can be avoided, I’m sure as parents, we’d take that route.

I was also super excited to see that Naty had baby bath foam in their range. An entire bottle dedicated to BUBBLES! Harper LOVES this and has so much fun splashing around with the them. You only need a small scoosh of the bubble liquid as a little goes a long way.

The bottle sizes are also super generous as they are all 200ml bottles, except for the nappy rash cream, which is a 50ml squeeze tube – again, easy to use while on the go! The nappy rash cream is also fabulous as a barrier protector as it is quite thick and spreads super easily, being non – sticky. Whenever Harper shows signs of possible nappy rash starting to flare up, we use this rash cream which soothes the redness and tones her bottom down a notch from looking super angry. Nobody likes angry bottoms!

All is certified by Ecocert and all of these products have no parabens or chemicals which leaves your delicate babys skin angelically soft and irritant free.

All in all, if you are looking for a gentle, chemical free range for your baby, then this is the perfect line of baby care products. This range has a very light scent too, which also suits the snout if you’re prone to fragrance whafts. I love knowing that the products that I am using for my little Harps doesn’t harm the environment or her sensitive skin.

Until next time,

Mycaila – Jade

xxx

ANTI AGING WITH HEY GORGEOUS SKINCARE: WHEN IS THE RIGHT AGE TO START USING ANTI AGING PRODUCTS?

Have I already reached THAT stage of my life? The one where the word “wrinkle” is now a part of my vocabulary?

It’s every girls’ dream to not have those little squiggles come up to say “hiiiii” on our faces. Those little lines we call wrinkles are totally unwelcome in many of our books, but unfortunately, after years of hibernation, they surface. And when they do, I’m sure many of us have experienced the same thing – an outbreak of mass panic hysteria!

Yes, to many, wrinkles are a big deal! In the land of youth, comes a time where crow’s feet and frown lines retreat from vacation, and have a permanent stay on our lovely little facial canvases.

My thoughts? Why not try and make those little buggas venture out our lives and save them for a rainy day.

I got in touch with the lovely Hey Gorgeous founder, Phoebe,  and asked:

When is the right age to start using anti-aging products for the eyes? 

Now, I’m asking this because when I asked my dermatologist about this, he didn’t really answer my question which left me feeling a little confused, but also silly for asking this at a “young age”. I mean, wrinkles are for old people, right? WRONG!

Hey Gorgeous answered:

“If I knew then what I know now, I definitely would’ve started my anti-ageing regime earlier. Prevention being better than cure is certainly true when it comes to skin care. After the age of 20, one percent less collagen is produced in the dermis each year. Collagen and elastin fibers become thicker, looser resulting in inelastic and brittle skin and eventually wrinkles and sagging. In our 20’s the skins exfoliation process decreases by 28% (this ageing malarkey is so not for sissies). And all of this is not helped by environmental factors. So, when you are in your 20’s it’s a good time so start a preventive routine”.

Hey Gorgeous suggests:

“An eye cream is an excellent start. (The skin is very thin and delicate and is usually the first place to show signs of ageing). Adding Vitamin C typically is also recommended. Vitamin C plays a vital role in the synthesis of collagen production and for the regeneration of fresh strong healthy skin cells. The recommended products to introduce into your beauty routine are: Revitalizing eye cream. Vitamin C Serum and Moisturizer”.

Well, there you have it ladies, right from the experts at Hey Gorgeous! It seems early 20’s it is! Being 24, I would definitely have started my wrinkle prevention stage at 20. For now, though, I have been stuck into my routine of my anti-aging products which I have been using for the last year.

I am currently using the Vitamin C Age Defying Serum. This product has been my holy grail of all things anti-wrinkle. I use this at night before bed, to give it a really good chance to soak into my skin and fight off those wrinkles bravely, all night. This serum is highly concentrated and helps boost collagen, and I love that it has a very subtle scent and no funky ingredients that I can’t pronounce, as you find with many serums these days.

The other part of my anti-aging routine is the Hey Gorgeous Happily Ever After Anti-Ageing Moisturiser– sounds dreamy. I apply this in the mornings. I LOVE that this moisturiser is oil free and doesn’t leave my skin over moisturized and greasy! My favourite scent in this is the grapeseed, and the fact that a SMALL dollop goes a very long way!

I’m so happy to have found this range, having struggled with acne for most of my life. I love that all these products are made with natural ingredients and no chemicals. The fact that you need to use these products within 12 weeks speaks for itself.

P.S I’ve noticed a reduction in the wrinkles that were starting to form around my eyes! My skin feels fresh, smells fabulous and is happy, most importantly.

Although Hey Gorgeous is a proudly South African company, they have since launched in the UK, which makes my heart and skin SUPER happy. Click here to view all the different cruelty free goodies that they have to offer.

Until next time,

Mycaila-Jade

xxx