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A source of daily inspiration and friendly advice, these mums’ Instagram accounts are a much-needed dose of parenting positivity. Sharing everything from candid family photos to real-talk on sensitive issues, these influencers make a living from talking about the beauty and the reality of being a mum. The outcome? Images and words to remind fellow parents in moments of joy and delight, stress and challenge, and throughout those long sleepless nights that you are not alone – a virtual village in which to raise a child!
With this in mind we invited some of our most-loved mamas who, in their working lives, specialise in child nutrition, postnatal fitness, and living their best mum life, to share a carefully curated selection of secrets and shortcuts aimed at making the days run more smoothly. We hope this parent centred, child-friendly guidance makes as much difference to your family life as it has to ours!
As mum to Raffy and Ada, Charlotte says: ‘First off, have snacks you can grab anytime you’re heading out of the door. I often make oatcakes – they take 10 minutes to create, travel easily and last for a long time so they’re great for busy mums! Next, have a really good bib that catches all the food during breakfast time. This saves you from cleaning the floor three times a day! Lastly, have multiple water bottles for the kids stowed away in various places from the car to your changing bag. That way, you know you’ll never be without a quick drink for your little ones (or you!)."
"I make a big batch of my Super Protein Porridge every Sunday and pour batches into small Tupperware bowls. It’s full of goodness and a great way for them to start the day well. When we come down for breakfast, the Littlies are already hungry, so I warm up a day’s portion and give them their Optibac 'For babies & children' live cultures supplement in the meantime, when it’s designed to work best!"
Roxanne believes that involving children from an early age will encourage them to exercise as they get older and to get used to being active as part of their daily routine. It’s taken work, but Roxanne is able to keep Kyrie entertained and happy whilst she does her workout. She tries to turn all her workouts into a game: ‘I get Kyrie to shout "Go mummy!’ until I say time's up. Run to get me a ball or resistance band whilst I’m doing squats, lunges etc., or sing one of his favorite songs, say the alphabet or count whilst I’m performing an exercise."
Roxanne also knows how hard it can be to prioritise your health after having a baby, so she shared 4 top tips with new mums in mind:
“I’m a new mamma, Isabella is only 3 months and I can say with confidence we now have our own little routine in the mornings. For the first six weeks, there was zero consistency to our days. I guess for her it was just getting used to being on the outside of the belly - her old home. And for me, taking care of a little human. Now things are different. We usually, give or take, wake up around 8am. First we have a lil chat in bed, she sleeps in a co-sleeper so she just looks over with her big blue eyes and stares at me, smiles & sometimes giggles. She is in the best mood first thing in the morning!! Anything I say at all makes her smile, it’s such a wonderful time and I make sure to embrace it each morning. Once she’s bored of just lying there and looking at me, we go on our play mat and do bellytime, play with her baby gym and rattles etc. Just have lots of interactive fun until she gets tired and wants to go for a little nap, I feed her and she goes down for an hour or so."
"So don’t worry if you can’t either... Have your coffee when the baby goes down for her morning nap! So many times I tried to have my coffee while she played and let’s face it, while playing with her time goes by and I just never seemed to have a hot cup of coffee, ever!! So now I try to enjoy my morning coffee while she goes down for a nap! I’m breastfeeding so I can only have one cup a day and I make sure it’s amazing. When she’s down for her nap I try to get things done around the house, I put the laundry on to wash, make the bed, wash myself etc. I get everything done so that when she wakes I have nothing to worry about but her.”
Lucinda knows that “with the mad rush of school day mornings, deciding what to feed kids can send parents into a stressful spin and it is very easy to default to packaged convenience food.” Instead she recommends filling the kids’ lunchboxes before going to bed and storing them in the fridge – “That way, the kids are already asleep which means it is much less likely you will give in to pester power and can choose exactly what to give them for their lunch and snacking. Also whilst you're there, why not set the table for breakfast too?”
We hope this first-hand knowledge has given you an idea or two about how to create a routine that works for you. After all, every family is unique and different things will work for you and your little ones at different times – working it out is half the fun! You are the expert on your child, make the most of the journey.