Seven Years in a Shoebox

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Aug 262016
 

Shoebox Timeline

The ProBlogger Event Shoebox Timeline Competition is brought to you by:
ProBlogger, Shoebox Timeline and The Good Guys

As I sat down with a big shoebox full of photos, hospital papers, tiny ankle bands and other little momentos it suddenly hit me, just three more sleeps until the twins turn eight. It feels like they grew from teeny wrinkly preemie babies into confident school kids in just the blink of an eye. Eight years, gone. As their birthday is coming closer so is the anniversary of Hip Little One which I started when the twins turned one.

7People ask me all the time why I started Hip Little One seven years ago, how I came up with the idea and where I get my inspiration from, day after day, week after week, month after month and year after year. Of course I’d like to say that it’s my tribe of (now five) beautiful kids that inspires me and in a way of course they do, but looking back it’s more a case of the kids driving me…

Twins are HARD work, especially when you are a first-time mother in a strange country with no family around to lend a helping hand. That first exhausting year felt like one long stretch of feeding, changing, rocking, sleeping and some days I really wondered how I would make it through the day. Around their first birthday I decided that, instead of mum-life driving me crazy, I would let it drive me and Hip Little One was born. In a way I guess you could say my blog came to my rescue.

Thanks to Hip Little One I no longer feel like ‘just’ a tired mum, I am now a writer, a designer, a dreamer, a creator, a photographer, a journalist, a cook, an explorer, an administrator, a colleague, a friend, a spokesperson, an ambassador and most importantly a better, more fun, mum. Since starting my little blog I have learnt so many new skills (you are never too old to learn), met many amazing people and achieved things I never thought possible making me feel powerful and strong.

I have never said it out loud but today I will: Deep down I am super proud of my work, of my determination, of sticking with it even on tough days, of being original and proud of what I have achieved the past seven years while raising five little munchkins at the same time. Do my kids inspire me? They absolutely do, but even more so they drive me.

To find out more about Shoebox Timeline, to check out all its amazing features and to start your own Shoebox visit www.shoeboxtimeline.com.

Jun 032014
 

When I was pregnant with the twins I read a big pile of ‘baby help books’ and like many mothers I wanted to do the best for my babies and breastfeed them. They say breastfeeding comes naturally but the truth is that it didn’t come naturally for me. I really struggled, my very small babies didn’t drink well, I had way too much milk, I battled a serious bout of mastitis and there was so much around the clock pumping and topping up involved that after three months I saw no other choice but to change to bottle feeding. While at the time I knew it was the best choice for all of us I have regretted it often and I was determined to try again next time.

30 minutes old

When baby no.3 arrived I was excited and well prepared for what was to come, when I was hit with mastitis in the 4th week I knew the signs and calmly worked my way through it with antibiotics, cold packs and frozen cabbage leaves. Our baby was thriving, she was stacking on the weight and breastfeeding soon became relaxing and completely normal for me. I hope I will never forget those quiet night feeds, listening to those soft content drinking noises, watching her fall asleep while drinking and seeing the smile on her relaxed face. In the end I managed to breastfeed her, and after that baby no.4, for one year each which I am extremely proud of.

1 week old

After a total of 28 (some easy, some very hard) months of nursing babies I have learnt a lot about breastfeeding, the most important thing being that breastfeeding is a learning curve for both mother and child. It is a journey you are on together and it may not always go like you have planned and sometimes it takes a while until you are both comfortable with it. It’s also a personal journey and all that matters is you and your baby, everyone’s story is different and you don’t have to take other people’s comments and opinions on board. Personally once we established a good breastfeeding routine I found it extremely rewarding and I very much cherish all the precious moments I spent feeding our children.

4 weeks old

One of my biggest problems with breastfeeding was a combination of larger breasts and an enormous quantity of milk. With the twins these two factors caused a lot of issues: they didn’t drink enough and couldn’t handle the continuous milk flow, I had to hold two tiny babies and somehow get them comfortable under two gigantic breasts which was tricky (impossible I felt at the time). Because of all this extra milk I ended up in a vicious circle of pumping to get rid of the milk but producing more milk in response to the pumping (supply/demand), this caused mastitis (several times) and that’s something I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy.

Aside from keeping cold packs and frozen cabbage leaves in your freezer (I know they smell horrible but they are absolutely magical when dealing with engorged breasts or mastitis!) I have one tip that for me made the difference between a breastfeeding disaster and breastfeeding success: feeding while laying down. It means you can be comfortable and relaxed without hurting your back and your baby can decide on its own comfy position and move, shift, take a breath when needed, baby doesn’t have a big breast in its face and you don’t have to hold your baby’s head in place. Especially in the beginning when feeds can take 30 minutes or longer this is such a comfortable feeding position and as your child gets older/heavier it will save your back.

If you have a great breastfeeding tip to share please leave a comment below, your tip may just make the difference in someone else’s breastfeeding journey.

Medela

Medela provides real solutions for breastfeeding mothers to get over any hurdles in the early days and to support their long term breastfeeding goals. Through its extensive range of breast pumps and other breastfeeding products, Medela is committed to promoting the benefits of breast milk and encouraging long term breastfeeding. Stay up to date with the latest Medela news and promotions, ask breastfeeding questions and join the conversation at www.facebook.com/medela.au.

To find out more about Medela, to browse the Medela range and to locate a stockist near you visit www.medela.com.au.

Save up to 45% on Baby Jogger

 Baby, Out & About, Sales & Savings  Comments Off on Save up to 45% on Baby Jogger
May 042012
 

One of the most important purchases for a new baby would have to be the pram. You will use the pram from birth up to two, three or even four years old so you will want to pick something that looks good, is practical and is durable too. Often a good pram comes with a hefty price tag but thanks to Ladybub you can cross the pram of your shopping list and still have plenty of dollars left in your baby budget.

Ladybub is all about big savings and in the current Baby Jogger sale you will find a range of cool prams that won’t cost you a fortune. Whether you are transporting one of two kids, like the look of classic black, bright green or funky blue, with prices reduced by up to 45% you can afford to buy a spare ride. Prices start at $209.95 for the compact City Micro Single in ocean Blue or Kiwi Green (usually $349).

As a mum of twins I know all about the extra expenses, you do get double the hugs but you also have to buy double the nappies and of course a double pram. Normally the Baby Jogger City Micro Double 2010 would take a massive $749 chunk out of your savings, but right now it can be yours for just $419. This leaves you with an extra $330, or should I say 11 boxes of nappies?

While you are making up your mind about which pram to get for your little cherub you can stock up on one of Australia’s favourite skincare labels: Milk Baby by Lindy Klim. Made with all natural ingredients Milk Baby is gentle and kind on baby’s skin and of course it wouldn’t be Ladybub if it was gentle on your wallet too. You can save up to 70% on Milk Baby products for body, face, hair and even the nursery.

To find out more about Ladybub, to browse all the fantastic products currently on sale and to order your favourites visit www.ladybub.com.au. Remember, shipping is just $9.90 no matter how much you order.

Jan 102012
 

If you have been following Hip little one for a while you may have been wondering how our toilet training journey is coming along. Having newborn twins was hard, having three kids under two was hard too, but compared to toilet training twins that was all a piece of cake. I did not expect it to be this hard, this time consuming and so stressful, each time we made progress something happened and they took a few steps back so I really didn’t have much to write about.

I decided to wait it out until summer, the toilet training season, so they could walk around in undies all day, saving me the hassle of undressing, dressing and washing numerous outfits every day (twins really is double the work!). Every child is different and although I copped a fair few moments on my decision to wait I knew we would tackle this in our own time, when they were completely ready. That time has come and so far so good, no more nappies at daytime and aside from a surprisingly small number of accidents everything is going brilliantly.

I was well prepared this time: 20 pairs of undies for each child, an endless supply of toilet paper and several boxes of Kleenex Cottonelle Flushable Fresh Wipes for Kids, a stool, soap and all within a hand’s reach. I have made it my life’s task to ask every 5 minutes if someone needs to go to the toilet and I don’t rest until I get a yes or no out of them. The twins have taken to the new routine really well, I was amazed by how many times they go to the toilet and manage to produce a few drops.

By now they can go the toilet by themselves, often our toilet is a high traffic area with one twin on the toilet, the other twins waiting for a turn and mummy trying to make everything run smoothly and with as little mess as possible. The baby is watching these new developments closely and sometimes even claims to want to do a ‘wee-wee’ herself, pulling up her top and sitting down on the potty, without success so far but that doesn’t matter!

They think toilet paper is very interesting and all this extra wiping can be pretty harsh on their skin so the Kleenex Cottonelle Flushable Fresh Wipes are a perfect solution. These handy wipes are alcohol free and contain Aloe Vera, so they are gentle and soothing to the skin like the baby wipes they are used to. It makes cleaning little bottoms a lot easier and once done they can be flushed down the toilet (unlike regular baby wipes!).

You can buy the Kleenex Cottonelle Flushable Fresh Wipes for Kids from most Woolworths, Coles and independent supermarkets and now also Big W. A 42-wipe refillable pop-up tub costs just $4.98 each and when empty you simply purchase the 84-wipes refill pack ($6.98), the clever pop-up design makes it easy to use for little ones and only one wipe comes out at a time (no unnecessary waste!).

To find out more about Kleenex, to browse the range and to get involved with the Kleenex Mums community online visit www.kleenexmums.com.au.

For your chance to win one of ten Kleenex prize packs valued at $41 (containing a Kleenex Plush Puppy, Kleenex Cottonelle Flushable Fresh Wipes for Kids Tub and Refill Pack) visit the toilet training section on www.kleenexmums.com.au and answer the following question: What is your best toilet training tip?

Submit your answer by leaving a comment below, your email address will not be published.

If you really want to win you can earn up to ten additional entries, please leave separate comments for each entry:

Competition ends February 10, 2012. Sorry, Australian entries only.