The 5 Best Mum Blogs-Real Accounts of Motherhood

The 5 Best Mum Blogs-Real Accounts of Motherhood

The 5 Best Mum Blogs-Real Accounts of Motherhood

The 5 Best Mum Blogs – Real Accounts of Motherhood 

Social Media is such a big part of everyone’s lives these days.  I always seem to start my day looking at my facebook and instagram accounts, to see what has been going on. It is such a source of information, so great for new mums, as it has everything from local facebook mum groups, to classes and tips. But, I also love reading blogs. What I love about the various mum blogs out there is their honesty.  The real accounts of motherhood The things all mums want to hear! The reality. Here are my favourite 5 best mum blogs.

 

The Mummy Adventure

 

The Mummy Adventure, is an award winning blog documenting the adventures big and little that being a parent entails. Written by Bex, it documents her life with her four children.  She talks travel and kids fashion and is certainly one to read!

The Unmumsy Mum

 

This is one of the best mum blogs. I love the frankness of this blog. Written by Sarah, she started this blog after becoming disillusioned with the other parenting literature she found online.  Everything seemed to show glossy, rose tinted view of parenting, and she wanted to show the day-to-day reality.  She talks about a range of topics from the ‘Off Days’ we all have to the top 5 really useful baby products.

 

 

In The Play Room

Written by Anna who lives in London with her 4 children, this blog shares great ideas about playing, learning, days out and life with young children. She also have a great printable section on her site to help mum’s keep their children entertained!

 

 

 

Sparkles and Stretchmarks

 

Sparkles & Stretchmarks is a blog documenting family life in all it’s glory – from the beautiful picture perfect moments we all love to the inevitable downsides that we’re not so fond of.

 

Hayley, the writter,  believes that talking is the best therapy and so the blog is where she does this. Her aim is that the blog is intended to be a space to reach out to like minded mummies of young children, fellow anxiety sufferers, and busy women of the modern age! 

 

Family Fever

 Another blog from a mother of 4.  This blog started as a place to record, photos, stories and memories of her children as they grow up, but it soon became a place to share experiences and learn from others. It contains everything from reviews, chats and guest posts from other bloggers.

 

Which of these best mum blogs do you think you will read?

I hope you find these blogs useful.  I would love to hear back about the blogs you use or find useful, so we can share this information, so please do comment below.

Being a mum is amazing, but it does have its constant challenges. By talking and sharing our experiences, whether they happen to be good or bad, is certainly what we all need! It makes us feel human, especially in those time of frustrations or needs.

 

Don’t forget to document your motherhood journey, whether that is booking in with me for newborn photos or a motherhood/family session. Please get in touch by completing this form. 

Check out fellow Birmingham maternity and pregnancy photographer, Tianna, who shares photos from a recent maternity shoot.

 

Pregnancy Advice – Tips to dealing with insomnia during pregnancy

Pregnancy Advice – Tips to dealing with insomnia during pregnancy

Pregnancy Advice: Tips to dealing with insomnia during pregnancy

 

Let’s talk pregnancy. I often find when I talk to my maternity shoot clients, that many of them suffer from insomnia during pregnancy.  This can become worse as your progress in pregnancy and your bump becomes bigger, you may need to go to the toilet more often or just find it hard to switch off. One study undertaken in America, discovered that 80% of women experience pregnancy insomnia. So, here are some tips to help you have a better night sleep.

 

 

 

1. CUT BACK ON EVENING DRINKS DURING PREGNANCY

During the first and third trimesters of your pregnancy, in particular, you may find you need to urinate frequently during the night, since your baby is positioned in a way that presses on your uterus and gives you the need to go to the toilet more often. Try and help yourself by cutting back on the evening drinks, especially those with caffeine in, as these are bladder stimulants.

 

 

 

 

2. TRY AND MAINTAIN A REGULAR SLEEP/WAKE ROUTINE

 

Try and make sure you go to sleep and wake up at the same time each day, to help with the insomnia.This will make you feel more alert during the day.

 

 

3. SLEEP ON YOUR LEFT SIDE DURING PREGNANCY

During the third trimester of pregnancy, it is recommended that expecting mothers sleep on their left side. This increases the flow of blood and nutrients to the fetus, uterus, and kidneys. Also, try to avoid sleeping on your back for extended periods of time. 

 

 

4. USE PILLOWS

To help with back pain especially in the third trimester of pregnancy, lay on your left side with your hips and knees bent, and place pillows between your knees, under your abdomen and behind your back.

 

5. EXERCISE REGULARLY DURING PREGNANCY

Unless your doctor has advised you against exercise, taking regular exercise can not only help your mood, keep you fit and improve circulation, but it can also aid sleep.

 

 6. TRY RELAXATION TECHNIQUES

Meditation can help with insomnia during pregnancy.  Relaxation helps with anxiety and  worry which you may be feeling if tired and lacking in sleep.  How about trying maternity yoga?

7. GET UP OUT OF BED IF YOU ARE STRUGGLING TO SLEEP

 

We have all been there, where we are lying awake in bed desperate to sleep.  The best advice is to not lie there but to get out of bed and do another relaxing activity such as reading, writing, take a warm bath, or any other relaxing activity before returning to bed.

So here are just a few tips of how to reduce insomnia whilst pregnant. If anyone has any other suggestions, please do let me know.

How about considering pampering yourself during this special time and booking a maternity photography shoot.  What a better way to relax and be pampered then to have a professional makeup artist do your hair and makeup, before choosing some beautiful dresses to make you feel a million dollars.  Capture this special time with memorable photographs. For further information, including pricing and portfolio, please visit, www.nataliemossphotography.co.uk

 Kathyrn is a fantastic photographer in Sheffield.  Take a look at her recent blog story.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fun ideas to predict your babies gender

Fun ideas to predict your babies gender

Fun ideas to predict your babies gender

 

Gender reveal parties are becoming more popular. The minute you get pregnant, everyone wants to know the sex of your baby. The same question always gets asked and that is, do you know the sex of your baby? Now days, most of my clients from my maternity photo shoots have found out the gender of their baby at the 20 weeks scan, however, there are many fun ways and old wives tales to try and predict the gender.

 

 

 

 

 

1. Number Tests

 

It’s not modern science, but an ancient Chinese method uses a little bit of maths to determine the sex of a new baby. The Chinese gender prediction calendar cross references a new mum’s age with the month of conception. Women have even used this chart to determine the best month to get pregnant if they’re angling for a pink or a blue nursery.

 

 

 

 

2. Direction Tests

This was done by my work colleagues when I was pregnant with my first child. You place a ring on a thread and dangle it over your pregnant belly. Supposedly, a ring that swings in a circular motion means you’re having a baby girl and if it swings back and forth, it’s a boy.

 

 

3. Appearance Tests

 

Some say you can predict the gender of the baby depending on the shape of the pregnant belly of a mum-to-be. Carrying high means a boy, carrying low means a girl. You’re having a girl if the bump resembles a basketball and a boy if it’s more watermelon-shaped.  During my maternity photo shoots, I always like to try out this idea with my clients.

4. Fetal heart Rate

 

Supposedly, if the baby’s fetal heart rate is below 140 beats per minute, you’re having a boy. If the heart rate is more than 140 beats per minute, you’re having a girl.

 

I have two children a boy and a girl.  To be honest, now they are 13 and 14, I can’t remember whether any of these ideas were correct with my two.  However, I do remember my cravings were totally different.  For my son, I craved corned beef of all things and for my daughter I craved sweet things! Maybe there is something in that.

Whether you find out the sex at your 20 weeks scan or you wait till your baby arrives, becoming a parent is the best feeling ever! No matter whether you have a boy or girl. Why not consider a maternity photo shoot to document this amazing time!  Photos to cherish forever of your amazing bump!

 

Claire Butler a photographer from Northern Ireland has written a great article that is work reading

 

Five pregnancy apps every mum-to-be needs

Five pregnancy apps every mum-to-be needs

Five Pregnancy Apps Every Mum-To-Be Needs by Surrey Maternity Photographer

 

As a Surrey maternity photographer, I get to meet lots of pregnant ladies.  Pregnancy is such an exciting time, but if you are anything like me, I had so many questions surrounding my pregnancy.  I had books for everything; week by week overview of the development of my baby, baby names, pregnancy health and so on.  However, now days, the information is readily available on the Internet.  Even better, there are so many pregnancy apps available that are free.  So, here are my recommendations for helping answer all those questions.

 

 

1. Baby Center

 

What a fabulous app.  It has everything you need to know. Not only does it have everything you might want to know during pregnancy, it covers newborn, baby, toddler and pre-school advice.

I especially liked the following from this app:

  1.  The fun Bumpie section where you can save all your favourite bump pictures
  2.  The baby names section where you can search up the meanings of names, names beginning with a certain letter or even the most popular names this year
  3. You can input your baby’s due date and start tracking your baby’s growth
  4. The articles are fabulous and cover topics like labour and birth, hospital checklist, morning sickness remedies, food and nutrition ideas.
  5. The most important thing ever, a contraction timer!

 

This app is extremely easy to use, free and is a wide source of information. Definitely worth a download!

 

 

 

 

2. CineMama

This app allows you to make a video of your pregnancy. Anyone who has ever watched Tom and Giovana Fletcher’s cute growing bump video will want to download this app. Throughout your pregnancy you take pictures of your bump and then you can turn your photos into a video and add your own soundtrack.  What a great fun way to document your pregnancy.

 

3. Ovia Pregnancy

This is an app purely for pregnancy.  You start this app by putting in some information including your estimated due date and your babies nickname so that you can follow the journey of your baby’s development over the weeks.

I especially liked the following from this app

  1.  The visual illustrations of your baby’s development, with an overview week by week of their growth
  2. The calendar that allows you to write notes and track doctors appointments
  3. The community section where you can view discussions on pregnancy topics or ask questions to other mums-to-be
  4. Medication and Food safety look up – helpful to see whether a medicine or partiular food is safe to have
  5.  The baby names section where you can search up the meanings of names, names beginning with a certain letter or even the most popular names this year
  6. Kick counter and contraction counters
  7. Articles and videos

 

 

 

4. Kegel Trainer

 

As a Surrey maternity photographer, I meet many pregnant ladies, and they all have recommended this app. Pelvic Floor exercises are so important to do during your pregnancy, but, with busy lives, we all have a tendency to forget.  This app will give you discreet reminders throughout the day. With ten different exercise sessions to work through, all between 30 seconds and three minutes long, this is one app to help you get your body ready.

 

 

5. Sprout Pregnancy

 

This is another app purely for pregnancy, although they do have other apps in their brand for when you have had the baby, for example, Sprout Baby.   Like the other 2 apps, they chart your pregnancy, however, I would say they perhaps this  pregnancy app does not offer such a wealth of information, but there are some nice features. Be warned though it does have some in app purchasing.

 

I especially liked the following from this app

  1.  With the Next Generation 3D Interaction in the app, you can see lifelike interactive movements, kicks, and heartbeats for a realistic representation of what’s happening right inside your growing belly.
  2. A pregnancy journal to record thoughts and moments in your journey
  3. A personalised pregnancy timeline
  4. The Doc says section which gives an overview of what a doctor would say at that stage of your pregnancy

 

So these are my recommended 5 best pregnancy apps, but there are so many others out there.  Not only do we have apps for pregnancy, but now days there is a wealth of information out there including books, social media sites and magazines. Don’t forget its best to book your newborn session whilst pregnant to guarantee availability.  Mya Lau a fantastic photographer, a baby shoot Huddersfield photographer,  has written a great article on how she likes to be creative during her newborn sessions.

 

 

Top Tips all expectant mums need to know

Top Tips all expectant mums need to know

Top Tips All Expectant Mums Need to Know – Natalie Moss Photography/ Maternity Photographer Surrey

 

 

As a maternity photographer in Surrey, I’m always chatting to clients about the imminent arrival of their little newborns and how they are feeling.  A study of mums-to-be commissioned by Pregnacare Vitamins, looked at what advice they found the most useful whilst pregnant. I’ve got 2 children, 12 and 14, and I wish I was told these things when I was pregnant.  Having a baby is such an exciting time, but their is no manual to refer too.  These are the 13 tips I would have loved to have been told!

 

1. Sleep when your baby sleeps

It is vital to get your rest.  For the first few weeks, your going to be kept busy with your new baby, and a good nights sleep may be a luxury.  So, make sure you rest/sleep when you can.  Don’t worry about the house/chores and just get that well earned rest!

 

2. Enjoy your baby as time moves on so quickly

Its true! My son was 14 this week, and I just can’t believe how quickly time has passed. When you first have a baby, you worry about everything, like, when they are going to sleep through. My advice is just live each day at a time.  Don’t wish time away, as before you know it you will look back wondering where time has gone too.

 

3. Do what you feel is right for you and your baby

You will be given much advice when you have a baby.  Everyone will be telling you their point of view and sometimes advice will be contradictory, however, you have to do what is right for you and your baby.  Trust your instincts!

 

 

 

4. Try not to compare your pregnancy to everyone else

As a maternity photographer in Surrey, I get to meet many pregnant ladies.  As I tell them all, every pregnancy is different.  I took great comfort in chatting with other pregnant mums, however, its good to talk but don’t worry yourself if your pregnancy is not the same.  We are all different.

 

5. It’s okay to ask for help

You are not a failure if you need help.  Having a new baby is an exciting time, but also tiring at times, so if you need help, then ask.  You need to look after yourself as well as your baby. Make sure you accept all offers of help from your family and friends.

A

6. Make a birth plan, but its not set in stone!

It’s a good idea before the baby arrives, to have a think about what you would like for your birth plan.  But, be realistic that this plan may change, depending on your labour, so be prepared for this.

 

7. Don’t goggle everything

The internet is a great resource, however, sometimes, too much information is not a good thing.  You can read things that can cause worry and unnecessary stress, so if you have concerns , its best to speak to your doctor or midwife.

 

8. Avoid visitors in the first couple of days so you can have time with your new baby alone

When you have your baby, all your friends and family will be desperate to visit.  Just try and limit visitors in the first few days, whilst you have time to rest and recover from the birth and give you and your partner time for just you and your baby.

9. Don’t worry about the housework after the birth

You have just had a baby, so it really doesn’t matter if the house is a bit messy, or the laundry is not done.  The key thing in the first few days/weeks is to look after you and your baby and rest when you can.  Housework can wait!

10. Don’t rush to lose the baby weight

Now days, within minutes of having a baby, celebrities seem to get back to their pre-baby weight!  That’s not realistic, so don’t beat yourself up if you have a post baby bump! As a maternity photographer in Surrey, I’m always telling my clients not to be hard on themselves. Just enjoy the time with your newborn and eat healthily as this is vital if you are to look after yourself well.  Be realistic on how long it may take to lose your baby weight, and its always best to be signed off by the gp before you start back exercising.

Picture courtesy of  freestocks.org

 

11. Feel the freezer with homemade meals before the baby arrives

Take some time before your baby arrives to do this, as you will really appreciate it when you have your hands full with your baby.  You want to eat well when you have had a baby, but having the time to make a nutritious meal is not always top priority, so, by freezing homemade meals, this can resolve this problem.

 

12. Be prepared to feel overjoyed, terrified and overwhelmed all at once – you will feel a flood of emotions after the birth

Your hormones are all over the place when you have a baby, so this is too be expected. I remember crying for no reason and then next minute laughing.

 

13. Talk about how you are feeling/doing when you have had your baby

Whether you are doing well or not, its always good to talk.  Take time to talk to family or friends about how your doing. Try and get out to meet people and take time for yourself as well.

 

 

I hope these tips are of use.  I’m always telling my newborn photography clients that time passes so fast, so, the main piece of advice I can give is enjoy your newborn!! They won’t be little forever! That’s why, its great to capture your newborn at a newborn photography session, as it creates lifelong memories of your little one.  Take a look at my newborn portfolio for examples of my work.

I would love to hear if anyone else has any tips that they were given that they found useful.

As mentioned, your newborn grows so quickly so its so important to capture the different stages.  My friend, Lisa, an East Grinstead Newborn Photographer, has written a great article on the sessions she undertakes in the first year of your baby’s life.  

Pregnancy Advice – Tips to dealing with insomnia during pregnancy

10 Ways to Pamper Yourself During Pregnancy

10 Ways to Pamper Yourself During Your Pregnancy

 

As a maternity photographer in Surrey, I get to make pregnant ladies feel special.

It’s so important to take time during your pregnancy for yourself.  So here are 10 ways to pamper yourself during pregnancy!

 

1. Get a Pedicure

Often, pregnancy can cause swollen ankles and feet, so having a lovely foot massage and pedicure is the perfect way to ease away the strains.  Besides, by the third trimester, you may not even be able to see your feet!

 

 

 

2. Visit a Spa

 

What a better way to relax then a day at a spa or even a beauty treatment. A massage is the perfect way to soothe your aching hips, shoulders, and back, especially during the third trimester. However, make sure that the masseuse is trained in pre-natal massage.

 

Glitterati Beauty Salon in Weybridge offer maternity massages and for treatments.  Details can be found here. Alternatively, the Runneymede Spa, offer spa days, with maternity treatments available. Details can be found at:

 

 

3. Have a reflexology treatment

Reflexology is a fantastic alternative therapy treatment during pregnancy. Not only is it so relaxing, It’s believed to help balance the hormonal rollercoaster that pregnancy creates.

 

4. Run a nice bath

Another way to pamper yourself during pregnancy, is to take a nice bath filled with some soothing essential oils.  Dim the lights and play some soothing music. A great way to unwind, just make sure the bath water is not too hot.

 

5. Feel your best – join an exercise class.

Join a prenatal yoga class, or a group exercise class that is specifically designed for pregnant women. Alternatively, swimming is a great form of exercise whilst pregnant.

 

6. Get your hair done

Nothing feels better and a great way to pamper yourself during pregnancy than a visit to the hairdresser to get your hair done.  After getting your hair done, why not arrange something special, maybe a nice meal out or a visit to the cinema.

 

7. Why not arrange a mocktail party

Celebrate your pregnancy by inviting your friends over, where you can drink alcohol-free mojitos, margaritas and daiquiris. Or maybe incorporate this into a baby shower party.

 

8. Dress up

Don’t be afraid to buy yourself a few new maternity outfits. Wearing something nice makes you feel special, and you certainly deserve this. Maybe consider treating yourself to a new accessory or piece of jewellery if you don’t want to buy too many clothes right now.A good excuse for a day out with friends and time for a nice coffee/lunch and catch up.

 9. Get some extra sleep

Why not have a long weekend lie in with breakfast in bed or or enjoy an afternoon nap: any kind of extra sleep is something of a miracle, especially before your little one arrives.

 

10.Book a maternity shoot

Celebrate the beauty of being pregnant with some images of yourself.  Book a maternity photographer. Have a makeup artist make you feel gorgeous before the shoot and then have some pictures taken to make you feel special and capture images that will provide lifelong memories.

 

I offer maternity shoots, which include a makeup artist.  For further details visit here or call 07723 605 302.

 

As well as a maternity session, you may like to consider a newborn shoot. My friend Mya, a fantastic Baby Photographer in Huddersfield, has written a great blog on the before and after shots from a newborn session. Definitely worth a read.