A few weeks ago, an idea popped into my head. An idea that could bring mums together, provide tips and advice on the crazy world of parenthood, and give others an insight into other mummys’ daily lives. You’ll soon learn that you’re not alone on this crazy rollercoaster, with the rather exhausting and extremely rewarding things you go through on a daily basis. From tantrums to belly laughs, food fights to poopy nappies, it's happening to all us Mummas!
Every month, I will be posting a collaboration blog with another mummy blogger called “A day in the life of a Mum”. This months blog is with the gorgeous, talented baker, freelancer and blogger Pamela Higgins from www.spamellab.com.
Pamela is based in Manchester where she lives with her husband and son Thomas Oliver. She is a freelance health food recipe developer and blogger, and first-time Mum. Pam met her husband thanks to Twitter, where they then ran a music site together, and smashed festivals and club nights for a few years before deciding they were ready to settle down and have a baby. So here they are, learning the rollercoaster that is parenthood. Pam is a working, fitness-loving Mum, sharing healthy recipes and lifestyle pieces to help inspire others.
I gave Pam some questions to answer, all about motherhood and her experiences so far. To find out where Pam likes to buy baby clothes, how her 'usual' day goes and what baby item she couldn't live without, keep reading....
How old is your son? Tom was born on 23rd June 2017 (he was five weeks early!) so is eight months.
Describe their birth in three words Unexpected. Painful. Incredible.
What is usually the first thing you do when you wake up? Cuddle baby and make a coffee!
In a small paragraph, tell me how your average day with Tom goes to plan
Tom wakes up about 6am. Fit in an hour home workout after morning feed before breakfast - he bounces in his jumperoo happily!
Go for a five mile walk around Manchester, Tom naps.
Lunchtime - homemade veggie meal, mashed banana with yogurt, cinnamon and a little cocoa powder. His favourite!
Playtime - make a big den, play with toys, crawl and climb.
Afternoon nap for baby while I get busy in the kitchen creating recipes for clients, photographing, writing and editing. Will fit in as much as I can!
Tea time - similar to lunch. Messy!
Bath time for Tom, PJs, playtime - especially when Daddy gets home from work or the gym.
Eat dinner with husband while Tom plays or sleeps - his usual bedtime is about 9pm then we can chill as a couple, or I do extra work and blogging. We go to bed about 10pm.
This is an average day. I’m a self-employed health food recipe developer and haven’t taken any time off (my choice - I love my job!) and blogger, I still go to events, do restaurant reviews and see my friends, I take Tom with me a lot of the time. However, some days Tom will really struggle with teething which throws things out the window, or we’ll go and see friends and their babies for the afternoon. It’s all about being flexible.
Do you go to many/any parent and baby groups? If so, what types? I went to baby massage when Tom was young but now he doesn’t sit still! I arrange meet-ups with other mum friends at one of our houses so our babies can play rather than groups. We’re moving house soon so will be looking to join groups then.
Where’s your favourite place to buy baby clothes? I’d have to say Sainsbury’s! My parents buy clothes for Tom every time they see us - they shop there and everything he’s worn is gorgeous, lovely material, fits and washes well. Good price too, especially when they grow out of clothes so quickly!
What is your most treasured item from when Tom was a newborn? When Tom was born he was so small that all the hats we had were too big for him. A nurse gave him a knitted one from the ward for prem babies and he lived in it for the whole eight days we were in hospital (he had jaundice so needed UV light treatment). We kept it and it looks so tiny now!
What’s the best baby-related item you’ve bought? And why? The jumperoo. Tom is so energetic and active, and although it’s amazing that he crawls and climbs everywhere, it’s good to be able to pop him in so he can happily jump and swing. I know he’s safe and don’t have to keep running after him and means I’m able to do jobs or work!
If you could pick the best car for your family, what would it be? Not sure I can answer this, we currently have a Ford Fiesta but it fills up fast by the time we’ve put the pram in - we’re swapping for a Vauxhall Astra SXI soon as it’s got more room so we’ll see!
What do you/have you struggled with most about becoming a Mum? Adapting to change - the main one being independence. Being self-employed I’ve been so used to having my own routine of working, going to events when I want, travelling… Although I’m still doing this, it’s changed and my days fit around Tom. I absolutely love being a Mum but it takes some time to get used to when a lot of time is focused around feeding, cleaning, nappy changing, playing, getting them to sleep and have to plan things way in advance. Also time as a couple - my husband and I used to go out a lot together, club nights, gigs and festivals - luckily we have babysitters around who we try and make the most of when we can to have the odd date night!
What is the best thing about being a Mum? Having a little human THAT YOU CREATED, who looks up at you and loves you unconditionally, who depends on you for everything. Nothing beats that feeling.
Describe you as a Mum in three words Organised. Caring. Patient.
What tip/s would you give to a new Mum? To take each day as it comes. I’ve alway been used to structure and routine and when a baby comes along, that all gets turned around. And once you feel like you settle into some kind of pattern, it all changes as baby evolves and grows. But that’s ok - just work around it and be flexible. I’ve become more relaxed because of it!
Also, remember that you are still YOU. Still do things you did before you were a Mum - listen to music, go out for a meal with your friends, watch a gig, smash out a workout at the gym - this doesn’t need to stop. Yes it might take more effort and organising (and it helps if you have a supportive partner, it helps so much if you work as a team!) but self care is so important. Exercise is my time so whether that’s with Tom or on my own, it makes me feel like me!
If you could do anything differently about being a Mum, what would it be? To not put so much pressure on myself and try and be perfect. I’ve always been a perfectionist and never stop working - but since having Tom I’ve really tried to chill out more and switch my focus. It’s so easy to get hung up on what it means to be a ‘good Mum’ but at the end of the day, you know your baby better than everyone, we’re all different and what one person might do, the other does it differently. As long as you and your family are happy and healthy, that’s the main thing.
To find out more about Pam, follow her on her journey through motherhood and see the amazing recipes she puts together (and when I say amazing, they really are!), you can find her at any of the below:
A big thank you to Pam for taking part in this month's blog!
If you’re a mummy blogger and would like to be a part of the “Day in the life of a Mum” monthly blog series, please leave your email address in the comments below.