One Month Blogversary!

It is over one month since I started my blog and my goodness what a month! I am currently in bed poorly as I write this, but I thought that would be a good time to reflect on my blog journey so far.

It has been a bit of an up and down month. I think anyone that writes a blog will find that there are days when you’re filled with positivity and feel as though creating this blog has been the best thing ever. Then there are also days when you think deleting the whole website is the only course of action. I can honestly say I haven’t been that dramatic yet, but I can imagine at some point I might. On the whole, this month has been a very positive experience. I have gained some followers, I have had likes and comments, I have had what I think are good viewing and visitor numbers and I have connected with other bloggers which is lovely.

On the other side, I have possibly at times been too concerned with numbers. It can be disheartening when you put your heart and soul into writing a post very close to you and you feel there hasn’t been as much engagement as you would like. I know this is the wrong way to be though. In order to remember my blog goal, I keep telling myself something that a friend told me she heard in a Podcast by a successful blogger. She said that most blogs fail because people give up within a year and are too concerned with the figures. If you can try to post at least once a week for a year, no matter how many people follow you or read it, you and your blog will be in a better place and will more than likely be successful. I also think it is what you consider successful to be though, because at the end of the day we’re not all going to become the next big blogger with a book deal. So, success for me is people reading my blog and gaining something from it. Whether that is support, advice or a little light relief, I will be happy.

Blogging has become a brilliant outlet for me and in terms of my personal mental health recovery it has been incredibly beneficial. There is still a lot I wish to speak about, but I have shared information in my blog that until I wrote it, I hadn’t actually been able to say out loud properly. That might take me into the realms of over sharing, but I think sharing experiences is important to raise awareness about certain issues and to help others know they are not alone. I have said it before, but reading blogs and watching vlogs has helped me, so if I can be as helpful to someone else then creating From Miss J to Mrs P will be worth it.

I think for one month in, I am doing pretty well in the grand scheme of things. I am going to continue to blog at least once a week and we’ll see where we are in the coming months. I am so happy with this past month that I am going to do Blogmas. This is a big undertaking and I apologise now for the Christmas spam that my posts will contain, but it is my favourite time of the year, so I will definitely be making the most of it.

If you are interested in reading more of my blog posts, please click the ‘Follow’ button on my blog page. If you like this post click the ‘Like’ button and leave a comment. I am also on Facebook and Instagram @frommissjtomrsp and Twitter @frommissjtomrs1.

Thank you for your support.

Mrs P x x x

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Toddler Tales – Week Four

Toddler Down – Another week of no sleep

My poor little one has had a bit of a rough week. After struggling to sleep at all in his new bed, on Sunday he started being sick. He was really off colour for the next day and refused to eat nearly everything until Friday. I think the refusal to eat was fuelled by his back teeth coming through, seeing as every time he would put some food in his mouth it would be followed by a cry and him pointing and shouting “mouth!”.

This has meant we have also not had the best week in terms of sleep again and it is really taking its toll. So many things are affected when you don’t sleep. I injured my neck, shoulder and back in an accident a number of months ago, and since not sleeping properly over the past two weeks, the injury has started to get worse. Yesterday, I was really struggling to move, which with a very energetic toddler is so hard. He doesn’t understand and so can’t alter his behaviour accordingly. I hate feeling as though I can’t do everything I need to and should do as a mum, so yesterday started as a bit of a down day. Thanks to my wonderful mum, who helped me out, it got a lot better and after a good night’s sleep (you heard that right he slept through the whole night!) I’m feeling better today.

DB2 also ate all his food yesterday. He didn’t refuse it or throw it around the room, he ate it! This is another reason to feel better too. It is so worrying when your baby/child is poorly and when they’re being sick or not wanting to eat, you feel so helpless. In my experience the being sick and refusal to eat is usually short lived, but obviously if you’re ever concerned don’t hesitate to get medical help.

One benefit of this week though, has been the extra cuddles. As horrible as it is when your child is poorly, they do definitely crave more affection. This is something I completely make the most of and have loved with DB2 this week, considering he is usually far too hyper and busy to bother with cuddles and kisses. I have had many this week and it has been the silver lining of the situation.

 

Toddler Up – Understanding consequences

This week has seen DB2 acting out in different ways a little more than usual. Tantrums have been less, but undesirable behaviour, such as hitting, pushing, throwing and biting have really taken centre stage. This has meant ‘Time Out’ has been used a number of times. DB2 is definitely at the age now where there has to be some consequence to actions and my favourite method to deal with this is ‘Time Out’ on ‘The Step’. I think Supernanny knew what she was doing, and I did use her method with my eldest which always worked a treat and I am continuing to use it with DB2 as well.

I now know DB2 understands his actions are wrong. The other day he had climbed on to a box of Duplo, which I asked him to get down from. Obviously, he refused and then attempted to hit me for my impertinence. After I told him not to hit, he stepped down from the box, walked to the door, opened it and went to sit on ‘The Step’ all by himself. I hadn’t indicated at this point he needed to go in ‘Time Out’, he took that upon himself and I have to say it was one of the funniest and cutest things I have seen him do.

I’m hoping this is a good development and means the option of choices can start to be introduced as a behavioural strategy. Only time will tell, but I’m pretty sure we still have much hitting, biting, pushing and throwing ahead of us, before ‘The Step’ will really work.

 

If you are interested in reading more Toddler Tales posts or more of my main blog posts, please click the ‘Follow’ button on my blog page. If you like this post click the ‘Like’ button and leave a comment. I am also on Facebook and Instagram @frommissjtomrsp and Twitter @frommissjtomrs1.

 

Thank you for your support.

 

Mrs P x x x

Ten Things I’m Grateful For – Mental Well Being Challenge

I’ve decided to take part in the PANDAS Foundation Mental Well Being #20daychallenge. I thought Day 2’s challenge of journaling ‘10 things you’re grateful for’, would be perfect to use as this week’s blog post. So, here are my 10 things I feel grateful for:

 

  1. My children – DB1 and DB2

My children are my everything. Since I found out I was pregnant with DB1, all I have wanted is to do my best for them. I am so grateful for both of them. They have given me so much purpose and joy. When I have struggled most with depression and anxiety, they were the stimulus that made me feel I needed to keep fighting to get through. They make me feel truly blessed and I couldn’t ask for more.

 

  1. My husband – Mr P

This man puts up with a lot. I admit I am not easy, but he manages and deals with me without a complaint. I honestly could not have done and got through everything I have without him. When I have been studying, working and healing, he has been there as a constant support and carer. He tries to understand and help when I have struggles with my mental health and is an incredible father. I do not think anyone could do better.

 

  1. My Parents – Grandma J and Grandad G

Again, they have put up with a lot, but have been nothing but supportive in every way. I don’t know where and what I would be without them. They are still the people I go to no matter what and I know they will always try to help and give me the best advice. They do so much for us and without them we would not be the family we are now or have been able to do all that we have.

 

  1. Family and Friends

We have amazing family and friends around us, who are always willing and wanting to help. During the past few years there have been those that have been a real and understanding support. Whether it’s helping with childcare, calling round for a brew and a chat, being on the end of the phone or checking in via emails or letters, I am so lucky to have these people in my life. They are my cheerleaders and are always there to encourage me.

 

  1. My Health

This year particularly, has tested my physical and mental health. After being in two accidents within the space of two months, which left me with back, shoulder and neck injuries, as well as leading to major problems with anxiety and depression, I can say I have a real appreciation for my health. It has taken a while to recover and I may never completely heal both physically and mentally, but I am in a much better place and I am very thankful.

 

  1. Time

I have been lucky enough to be in a position where I don’t need to work at this moment in time. That may not be the case forever, but I am making the most of it right now. This means I am able to stay at home with my children and really immerse myself in their growth and development. This is something I feel I really missed out on with my first son, because I was so busy studying for a degree and eventually working. I feel so fortunate I get this time now with my second son and I get to be there for my eldest as he goes through his final year in primary school and moves on to secondary school. I have realised that work and money are great, but they are no replacement for this time as it does just go so quickly, and you cannot get it back.

 

  1. My Faith

This is something incredibly important to me and something that has helped me and continues to help me daily. I think faith is very personal to every individual, but I honestly think whatever your faith (not necessarily just religious faith either), belief in something is vital.

 

  1. My Journey

Although it has not always been easy, I am so glad I have gone through everything I have. Without the bad and the good, I would not be the person I am now or in the place I am. I feel I am the most content, comfortable and assured I have ever been, and I know that would not be the case if everything that has happened had not.

 

  1. The people who inspire me

There are people that have been brave and strong enough to share their thoughts, choices and beliefs openly in order to influence and inform others. They are not always treated or acknowledged fairly, as unfortunately we live in a world where many do not like to admit their wrongs or feel the need to change their actions. I have been incredibly influenced in my life choices by certain people and I am very grateful that they have shared all they have and continue to share, in order to educate and change the planet for the better.

 

  1. This World

I am so glad I have reached a point in my life where I wake up every day grateful for the world around me. Thanks to my new outlook, I see the beauty of this world and the people within it daily and this not only makes me feel better, it makes me want to be better. I believe we are the caretakers of this planet. The Earth is not here for us, but rather we are here for it. Therefore, it is our duty to do the best we can in order to help it survive and the life within it. I find the concept of life a miracle as it is and so I am grateful to just be here and I believe I have a role to do as much for this world as possible. Even if that, for now, is just in simple actions such as changing my diet, buying more economically and ecologically friendly products and giving of myself to causes I feel I can be of use. I want to display my gratitude to this world as much as I can, so I know my actions will start to mirror these feelings even more.

 

I know this post may have become very deep and there may be those rolling their eyes at the over sentimentalism within it, but I have had some tough years, and this is the first time I have ever written about what I’m grateful for. It has been an incredibly beneficial exercise, as it has really made me stop and think of all the wonderful things I have around me. In day to day life we rarely give ourselves time to do this, I know I never actually have before, but as self-care is so important, I advise you to follow PANDAS lead and try to take some time to write about what you’re grateful for because it has really helped me today.

 

 

If you are interested in reading more of my blog posts, please click the ‘Follow’ button on my blog page. If you like this post click the ‘Like’ button and leave a comment. I am also on Facebook and Instagram @frommissjtomrsp and Twitter @frommissjtomrs1.

 

Thank you for your support.

 

Mrs P x x x

Toddler Tales – Week Three

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Toddler Down – I am a walking Mombie!

All I can say about this week is – I AM TIRED! This picture shows an incredibly sleepy mummy and toddler because DB2 has decided that it is time to climb out of his cot. This means we very quickly needed to turn his cot into a bed. This also means that he now cannot go to sleep without myself or Mr P being in the room.

A new bed is exciting, but a big change. Initially, running around the room and trying to jump off furniture on to the bed was the game. We have had to remove everything from DB2’s room, so that all that is left is the bed and a rug, to avoid any harm coming to him. This, at least, has taken the danger away, but hasn’t made nap or bed time any easier.

For the first few days/nights it took a long time to get him to sleep and stay in the bed. Once he was in bed, I stayed with him and stroked his back until he was asleep. At times this would happen a little faster, but within 30 minutes of him being asleep we would suddenly hear a distraught cry and be faced with an incredibly distressed two-year-old. We would go through the process of getting him to sleep again, only for the same thing to continue to happen. This happened constantly through the night, until Wednesday, when he finally only woke up once.

Now, he is sleeping through much better and only waking up once in the night, but it is taking about 3 hours to get him to sleep. This week has left us feeling as tired as we did when we were in the newborn stage, so has confirmed that we are not thinking about having another baby any time soon!

 

Toddler Up – Kids say the funniest things!

In the past week, DB2’s language has improved so much. He is picking up all sorts of words and trying really hard to put short sentences together.

He disappeared from his room the other day and ran into his brother’s room. Mr P went in and saw DB2 sitting on the bed with the blue, soft toy snake wrapped around him. “Look Daddy, blue snake! Ssssssssssssss,” shouted DB2 when he saw Mr P. He then carried the snake around the house and continued to repeat this sentence and snake impression for a good 20 minutes.

He is also understanding so much more. When Mr P asked, “Are you ok?” as he was going to bed last night, DB2 responded with a long sigh and “Fine”. We’re getting lots of “Yes please” and “Thank you Mummy” as well, which does melt my heart. This also means we’re getting a very definite and decisive “No!” quite a lot too, just to even everything out.

There are so many things he has said and done this week, but I think we’re too tired to actually recall them all. One thing is sure though, we are going to have to watch everything we say, because DB2 is also becoming a bit like a parrot and trying to copy so much. I mentioned that our meal contained chickpeas the other day, and that led to the word being repeated throughout the rest of the meal by DB2 in between each mouthful. Luckily, he hasn’t repeated anything undesirable yet, but we are going to have to be very conscious to avoid a potty mouthed toddler.

 

If you are interested in reading more Toddler Tales posts or more of my main blog posts, please click the ‘Follow’ button on my blog page. If you like this post click the ‘Like’ button and leave a comment. I am also on Facebook and Instagram @frommissjtomrsp and Twitter @frommissjtomrs1.

 

Thank you for your support.

 

Mrs P x x x

Managing the School Holidays with a Pre-teen

Half Term has just finished and although it was so lovely to be able to spend quality time as a family, there are definitely some challenges that occur whenever my eldest (DB1) is off school.

He is ten, and just like the majority of children his age, he loves to look at screens. He likes to watch TV and play on his tablet and games console. As many parents, I don’t like him spending too much time watching a screen. This undoubtedly has led to many an argument, particularly during school holidays.

Quite a number of years ago, I was fed up with feeling as though I was having to battle to limit screen time. So, I decided to create a School Holiday Routine. This was something I created with DB1, so he was fully aware of what he was expected to do and the benefits of doing this. I have to say Pinterest did give me some ideas when creating this, but over the years we have adapted it to work for us.

 

DB1’s School Holiday Routine

 

After waking up and having breakfast you must:

  • Get dressed
  • Brush your teeth
  • Brush your hair
  • Make your bed
  • Tidy up your room

 

In order to get screen time, you must:

  • Read for 30 minutes
  • Complete Maths work for 30 minutes
  • Do Handwriting/Grammar for 30 minutes
  • Play outside
  • Create something
  • Help a family member
  • Practice the piano/guitar for 30 minutes

 

This is the outline of our school holiday routine and dependent on what we have planned, it can change. There might be days when he doesn’t manage to do all the activities or any, because we are having a family day out, are away on holiday or DB1 is out with friends. In those circumstances, the routine is adapted to work around what we are doing.

I can’t say this is right for everyone, as every child and parent are different, but this works for us. DB1 responds well to structure and needs routines, which makes sense considering when he’s at school he has such strong daily routines throughout the week.

When we first introduced this, we did have some unhappiness for the first day or so, but once he knew the expectation and understood the reward for doing the tasks, it became much better. Now, whenever it is a school holiday, DB1 knows this is what he will be doing and quite willingly gets on with it. The arguments over the amount of screen time have lessened and I find he is so much more productive, occupied, independent and content. It may not work for everyone, but it definitely beats having to hide the tablet and games console.

 

If you are interested in reading more of my blog posts, please click the ‘Follow’ button on my blog page. If you like this post click the ‘Like’ button and leave a comment. I am also on Facebook and Instagram @frommissjtomrsp and Twitter @frommissjtomrs1.

 

Thank you for your support.

 

Mrs P x x x

Toddler Tales – Week Two

I was going to write that this week was a much better week in terms of tantrums, but that was before our visit to Mothercare yesterday. Even though DB2 was rolling around on the floor screaming because we had to leave, I can say that has been the only major melt down of the week. That has to be an improvement, right? That isn’t going to be this week’s toddler up or down though, because quite a number of new developments have happened this week to make me smile and grimace in fear.

 

Toddler Down – I need eyes in the back of my head!

DB2 is incredibly physical. As soon as he realised he could move as a baby that was it, nothing stopped him. He was rolling, crawling, standing and walking all in very quick succession and by the time he was 10 months old. It is no surprise then, that now he is trying to find new ways of moving and his favourite at the moment is to climb up and into everything. When I say everything, I mean EVERYTHING! This week has seen him climb into the TV unit, try to climb up the bookcase and climb onto any toy that is above floor height. I turned my back for a split second the other day and when I turned around he was sitting in the sink area of his IKEA kitchen watching Biggleton. That means he had used the shelf to climb on to the unit, then climbed into the space where the sink should be and was sitting on the shelf with his upper body poking out. This was quite a hilarious sight, but the fact he had done this so quickly was also pretty terrifying. Needless to say, I cannot and do not let him out of my sight. This is very difficult to cope with because it makes it a lot harder to get anything done during the day, but the fact he is so inquisitive to see what he is able to do is also great for his development.

 

Toddler Up – Being helpful

Although he very rarely stops moving, DB2 has been showing a real desire this week to help out around the house. He has loved dusting and sweeping for a long time, but this week he seemed to want to help in more ways. I was changing his nappy earlier in the week and he is now very aware of the process we go through. So much so, that he passed me a nappy sack when I had taken his nappy off, he then handed me the wipes and held on to one for when I needed it and finally passed me the nappy. This is a great improvement to the usual nappy changing fiasco, which feels as though you are trying to change a freshly caught fish. So, I’m hoping this may continue.

Another moment of toddler helpfulness, was as I was trying to sort out the clothes yesterday. I was trying to gather DB1’s clothes together for his camping trip from the clean clothes basket. DB2 saw me doing this and thought he would give a helping hand. He came over and started to pull every item of clothing from the basket and put it on to the couch. Now, in reality this wasn’t overly helpful because I was trying to separate clothes and he had just piled all the clothes on top of each other, mixing up the already sorted clothes again. I didn’t mind this though, because his intention was a good one and he just wanted to be involved in helping with the washing. Even after he had done this, he did spend a few minutes moving clothes into separate piles, so he was showing how much he had observed and wanted to try to take part. It didn’t last overly long and before I knew it he was walking around the living room with the basket on his head, but the moment was a good one nonetheless.

 

If you are interested in reading more Toddler Tales posts or more of my main blog posts, please click the ‘Follow’ button on my blog page. If you like this post click the ‘Like’ button and leave a comment. I am also on Facebook and Instagram @frommissjtomrsp and Twitter @frommissjtomrs1.

 

Thank you for your support.

 

Mrs P x x x