1. mamaME Box £25 for a one off box, £75 for 3 months, £120 for 6 months, £180 for 12 months
A one off box of treats or a 3, 6 or 12 month subscription. Treat mama to a little ME time. 5 gorgeous gifts every month just for her.
2. Be You Mug £14.95
Remind mama that she's perfect just the way she is with this gorgeous Cath Colebrook mug, printed with REAL gold! Just 'BE YOU' mama,
3. Hyaluronic Serum 200 £28
Splurge for mama and treat her with this wonder serum from Evolve Organic Beauty! Hyaluronic acid helps to reduce wrinkles and makes you look younger with an improved skin tone - OH YES!
4. Harriet Monochrome Teething Necklace £14.95
This stylish teething necklace by forMAMAandBABA would make a fab gift for a new mama, and it comes in a kraft gift box and cotton storage pouch.
5. Make Mine A Gin Pouch £15
Gift a gin loving mama this beautiful Cath Colebrook pouch- it can be used as a make up, or wash bag, or as a perfect evening clutch, including a message for the barman! Make Mine A Prosecco also available.
6. Lucky Penny Marble Luxe Bracelet £12
A unique white howlite stone beaded bracelet with flashes of copper and silver, handmade by Lucky Little Acorns. It features a British one pence piece- cleaned and handstamped, mama.
Meet Siobhan, mama of one, and founder of One Mama One Shed a business creating truly unique, beautiful handcrafted pieces. We've loved working Siobhan and promoting her gorgeous business!
I'm just One Mama in One Shed, creating handcrafted pieces whilst the little one sleeps. Primarily I turn unloved vintage cutlery into pieces that can be treasured for years to come. I engrave each piece, letter by letter with messages, some cutesy, some funny, some plain rude, but all loveable.
I started out doing the stamping as more of a hobby but it's only recently, during maternity leave that I've started to see it as a business and really focus on it. I love creating and I love being a stay at home, working Mama to my babe. It's the best of both worlds. The little one and I go on regular vintage cutlery sourcing missions and post office runs during the day and then I tend to do my stamping, polishing and packaging at night when she's sleeping. As it's now supporting my family I have been able to focus on developing new ranges and I'm SO excited to release some soon. Eek!
Although running a small business is wonderful, being a one girl band can be very hard work. There is very little opportunity to 'switch off' because you do need to be available all the time. I'd love to say I switch my phone off at a set time each day but the reality is I need to be able to respond to my customers enquiries whatever time they come in. I want to please, so much so that I've been known to hand deliver OMOS packages on Christmas Day! A recent app discovery has meant that I can now forward plan some social media posts so setting some time aside for that, when feeding the little one to sleep, allows me to spend less time scrolling and procrastinating when I could be having family time.
The business might have been around for a couple of years now but I really do feel like it's only the beginning for One Mama One Shed. Watch this space!
One Mama One Shed
This time one year ago I was 40+14 days pregnant. After a rocky road with baby number one's induction at 40+12 I was adamant this time that I wanted to hang on and try to let my body do it's own thing. I knew this baby would be 'late' (I'll come back to this) despite everyone's protestations; 'you never know,' 'this one might surprise you,' 'second babies tend to come sooner.' I just knew. With my first I hadn't shown any signs of labour; no Braxton hicks, no shows, no niggles, two sweeps later and still nada, but I was more than ready to meet baby so agreed to be induced at the standard 12 days post due date. The induction was pretty swift and brutal, and not helped by the fact that the wards were overflowing and understaffed- I ended up being hurried half naked from the antenatal ward to a makeshift labour ward, ready to push. No sink attached to the wall and other equipment hanging off it.. and I hadn't even met the midwife who delivered my baby. Without going into every detail, it was far from ideal- it's a big enough shock to the system giving birth for the first time anyway, but this was far from anything I had envisaged! My first born, Leo, didn't show signs of being 'overdue' or 'late,' and we had a rocky start, with it taking a week and a half for milk to come in, lots of tears- his and mine, and a rough introduction to breastfeeding. I definitely think that induction contributed to these problems- a fully mature baby should be physiologically stable and able to breastfeed well- hormones that surge during natural labour are known to help women cope with pain, as well as helping mother and baby to stay alert and interact well after birth.
As I waddled way past my due date a second time I was more clued up. I'd read more and researched the stats. I knew that most babies weren't 'late' or 'overdue' - 70% of women give birth after their due date. That's 70% of women being asked 'have you had that baby yet?' 'did you try eating curry?' 'pineapple?' 'a long walk?' over and over again. AND YES, WE'VE TRIED IT ALLL. How daft does it seem to expect every woman to give birth exactly nine months and seven days later? This method of dating a pregnancy (based on your LMP) also assumes that we all have a monthly cycle of 28 days and ovulate on the 14th day every bleeding (literally) time. I mean.. really? They do of course use the dating scan to get a more accurate idea of when baby is due, but even then would it not be preferable to have a due window of say three weeks, instead of one little frustrating and mostly incorrect date? Would that not help to take pressure off expectant mums? Only 5% of very, very lucky women actually give birth on their due date- I am SO jealous!
Once you make it to 12 days the pressure is very much on to get that baby out- this is because stats suggest that the placenta and amniotic fluid then begin to decline and there is a higher risk to the baby and an increased chance of stillbirth- frightening stuff. I'm no medical expert (and I wouldn't advise anyone to do anything they were not personally comfortable with), but as I mentioned before, I just knew this baby was not ready. I trusted my body instinctively- I could feel plenty of movement, felt well in myself and all was well with my midwifery checks. I decided that, even though I was SO ready to meet our baby girl, I wanted to wait for her to do things in her own time. My community midwives were fantastic and all said 'your body, your choice,' but it was advised that I get checked every day at the hospital. It turned out that, even though all the checks were fine, this was my undoing- two days later, sick of being sat stuck on monitors for hours on end in uncomfortable hospital beds (I had PGP which is a whole new level of hell and the beds were agony), missing my 21 month old and consultants making it clear that going on any longer was very much against their wishes, I reluctantly agreed to be induced.
The pessary didn't have any effect - 24 hours later, utterly exhausted, still in PGP agony and with the doctors suggesting I stay in another night to be monitored before they did anything else (the hypocrisy- I thought you said this baby had to be outta here?!) I, THANK FUCK (excuse me), went into natural labour. My girl was finally born the next morning, at 40+16 days, showing no sign of being post-dates- she was coated in vernix (which if your baby is truly overdue is scant or missing), had no wrinkly skin and the amniotic fluid was clear. And aside from the pushing stage (her head was 98th percentile, ouch), the labour was a dream compared to my first. When she was born I felt euphoria wash over me- something I didn't experience with my first, and it all felt very different. Although we still had challenges breastfeeding, my milk came in a lot quicker and she was much more relaxed than my first born.
I joked with both births that I had the gestation period of an elephant, but in all seriousness, I think I carry longer than the average, and I'm not alone. There are so many documented accounts of women that have gone well past 42 weeks- just google 10 month mamas and you will find a host of stories and articles. I don't want to sound like I'm suggesting I know better than medical professionals and I would absolutely listen to and want their advice again (except that I'm done cooking babies. No more. Honest). It just frustrates me that with all the wonderful medical knowledge we have and advancement in technology we can't just think outside the box a little more- the stats in regards to overdue babies (that the risk of stillbirth doubles after 42 weeks) comes from a 1958 study when mortality rates were 10 times what they are today. It would be wonderful if women were able to choose what felt right for them and their babies in a supportive environment, without pressure.
If you're interested in reading more on this subject here are a couple of articles I found particularly informative:
I was pregnant for 10 months
Saying no to induction
“As a nutritional therapist I very much agree that food can indeed be your medicine and medicine be your food. I wanted to create a set of blended superfood powders for certain health needs; nutritional therapy in a pouch. By using organic powders from my favourite nutrient dense plants and combining them with vegan plant protein, I’ve create 4 blends to help common problems I often see in my practice such as fatigue and weight gain round the middle. They work naturopathically with your body – the Energy Elixir for example doesn’t have guarana in it (a natural stimulant, but a stimulant nonetheless), instead it contains a rich source of vitamin C, iron and B vitamins all known to help improve metabolism along with maca that helps resilience to stress. Sports nutrition is also important to me – so many of the athletes I work with are using too much sugar and whey to power themselves. The Sport Elixir is designed to be alkalising, with plant protein and super leaves to improve resilience and recovery that ultimately helps optimise your performance. I hope that you enjoy them and experience the transformation.”
Karen Newby BSc Nutritional Medicine, Alchemy Founder
The Alchemy Organic Super Blend in your April mamaME Box can just be added to water, juice, or your favourite smoothie to help give you a brilliant super food boost. If you want to get a little more creative and try out a few nutritious recipe ideas:
Enjoy trying out lots of different combinations- you can find these recipes and more on the Alchemy website! April's mamaME Box includes a Morning or Energy voyager pack elixir. If you wish to purchase any of the other elixir's or larger sizes just head over to Alchemy Organic Super Blends and enter code MAMA20 to receive 20% off all purchases.
In the April mamaME Box you will find either a Morning or Energy elixir, courtesy of Alchemy Organic Super Blends. In today's blog post Karen Newby, Alchemy's founder and nutritional therapist, offers some great advice and tips for busy mums:
I’m a nutritional therapist, but I’m also a wife, mother, daughter, friend and fledgling business owner. I never forget the wonderful Marilyn Glenville coin this term ‘Hurried Mothers Syndrome’ during a lecture she gave at my University during my nutritional therapy degree. It rang so true with me as I thought of my own mother (not being a mother yet myself). We so often look after everyone else except ourselves.
As a new mother, this is the time to let people support you; your partners, mothers, fathers, friends, ANYONE that can help. You are in charge of nourishing your little one and you need to be supported to do so. If you are running on empty/caffeine/sugar, you will burn out…and if breast feeding your milk wont be optimised either. Two words: BATCH COOKING. And another 6 – MAKE THE MOST OF YOUR FREEZER. You need quick sustenance that just requires you to heat it up or put onto a plate. No slaving at the stove (you’re already prepped for the little one) and you need something that is quick enough to fix so that you can max out on their sleep time, taking some rest too (put those phones down!).
Batch cooking means that you always have quick options for main meals and snacks so you don’t resort to the less nutritious items. The aim here is to save time and energy plus maximize your nutrient intake. Spend time when you have your partner around, to make up batches of soups, rice salad, baked fish, tagines, mild curries (these are nice cold for lunch) and do an internet shop to minimise the need to supermarket shop.
Below are some easy to put together breakfast and lunches – these are the MOST important meals for all of us but especially new mothers. We need the energy we get from food in the day as opposed to late at night when we are about to crash. This will make you feel so much calmer too as our blood sugar levels keep nice and stable ready for breast feeding, nappy changing, bottle washing, park walking etc etc. As the saying goes:
Portion sizes should follow the path of the sun.
• Porridge with seeds, almond or coconut milk, ground linseeds, fruit/berries, cinnamon to taste
• Muesli - make your own with grains (oats, barley, millet, quinoa), seeds, nuts, dried fruit, and either soak overnight in water or fruit juice and take warm or cold in the morning, or take with milk, yoghurt or fruit juice.
• Pumpernickel rye bread with scrambled eggs, or nut/seed butters
• Eggs with salmon and spinach/greens
• Smoothies - make using coconut yoghurt, berries, ground nuts and seeds, oats, almond milk.
• Green smoothie – spinach, blueberries, avocado, lemon juice, cucumber, celery, organic plant protein powder.
• Yoghurt with fruit, ground nuts and seeds, and seed oils
• Hearty soup (with loads of vegetables, protein source such as lentils/pulses, chicken and some complex carbs such as brown rice, barley etc) with oat cakes.
• Kedgeree (from the night before!)
• Rice / bulgar / quinoa salad with mixed roasted vegetables and nuts eg cashews or walnuts.
• Home-made soup (good to batch cook at the weekend and put into freezer bags for the week) – chicken is good here, be aware of not too many pulses if breastfeeding as this can lead to colic in your baby.
• Baked potato, chicken or salmon baked in the oven with the potato with a little butter and hummus, avocado or mixed beans. Green salad.
• Stir fry vegetables with tofu/chicken/prawns, seaweed, cashews, bean sprouts. Stir fry with water first and then add the oil.
• Omelette (free range or organic eggs) with dark green (watercress, parsley, rocket etc) leafy salad.
Karen Newby, BSc Nutritonal Medicine, mBANT, CNHC
We have very exciting news - we are now a featured brand on Mama Tribe!
Mama Tribe is a curated brand and network directory for mamas. In the Mama Tribe community you can shop the brands, network with the community and support one another. Women supporting women!
Click on the pic above and have a browse - and look out for mamaME Box in the brand directory!
Just some of the fab brands (as well as ourselves!) that you can find over at Mama Tribe:
We love a good mum blog! Whether you're a mum to be, or a seasoned pro just looking for someone who gets you and mum life, mummy blogs are a great place to find no-holds-barred accounts of life with children, as well as advice, reviews and baby news. Have a look at some of our current favourites below, along with their mamaME Box reviews.