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What Makes the Best Baby Formula

What Makes the Best Baby Formula-

What Makes the Best Baby Formula?




When breastfeeding may no longer be an option, sometimes parents must resort to formula feeding. While all baby formulas are FDA regulated and safe for your baby, did some deeper research into what makes the best formula and what to look for when choosing the right one for your baby. You can see a summary of a portion of their article below:


What We Looked For


Lactose as a Sweetener


Yum, carbs. Turns out that babies love that sugary taste just as much as grown-ups — and in fact, they require it. Breast milk gets its sweetness from lactose. However, lactose can be expensive, so many formula makers have switched to lower-cost plant-based sweeteners, including corn syrup solids, glucose syrup solids, maltodextrin, and cane sugar or sucrose itself.


The issue isn’t necessarily the type of sweetener, but how sweet it is to the taste. For instance, lactose isn’t nearly as intensely sweet as sucrose. Maltodextrin, which can be derived from potato starch, corn starch, or rice starch, is also less sweet than sucrose. This handy chart shows relative sweetness as compared to sucrose. Notice that corn syrup solids are much less sweet than high-fructose corn syrup (only the former is used in infant formula, so no worries there).


The concern is that overly sweet formulas will lead infants to develop a taste for extra sugar as they get older. Over consumption of sweet foods (especially sugary drinks) is widely linked to obesity and other poor health outcomes. An NBC investigation found that some formulas have much higher levels of sweetener per gram than others. A separate investigation by The New York Times into the sweetness of a popular organic brand formula found that it was as sweet as grape juice.


The medical community is divided on whether this is a health concern or not. “Since before the advent of infant formulas, sugar has been added to cow milk fed to infants,” says Dr. Greer. “I do not know of any harm of adding sugar to infant formula to increase its sugar content closer to that found in human milk.” However, others disagree. The EU, citing concerns about childhood obesity, has banned sucrose and cane sugar from infant formulas and mandates the use of lactose for at least 50 percent of the carbohydrate. Vallaeys affirms, “If you’re going to feed an infant, and the infant’s natural food is breast milk, lactose is the kind of sugar to use.”


With this question unresolved, when it comes to dairy formulas, we favored those that use lactose as the main sweetener.


Formulas Designed for Easy Digestion


There are two main ways formulas can be adapted for better digestion. Partially hydrolyzed formulas give tiny tummies a head start in breaking down proteins. “Partially digested formulas are excellent for irritable babies,” Dr. Cohen says (though not for babies with true allergies).


A good whey-casein ratio is also important. Breast milk is about 60 percent whey and 40 percent casein — some sources have it more like 70:30 — while cow’s milk is about 82 percent casein. We wanted formulas that have a higher whey ratio that mimics breast milk.


Close-up of testing for Baby Formula




These days, the majority of infant formulas are enhanced with docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and arachidonic acid (ARA). These tongue-twisting ingredients may sound like scary chemicals, but DHA and ARA are just omega-3 fatty acids that occur naturally in breast milk and certain foods, like eggs and fish. In the vast majority of enhanced infant formulas, the DHA and ARA are extracted from algae and fungal sources.


Some research indicates that this added DHA and ARA can help infant eyesight and brain development; other studies say benefits are inconclusive. Nonetheless, they’re widely used in infant formulas, and the majority of the medical community agrees they’re helpful. Dr. Cohen says, “I do emphasize that DHA is really important.” Because of this and their sheer prevalence, all our top picks contain these additives.


That said, DHA and ARA are not without controversy. A chemical called hexane is used to extract DHA and ARA from their algae and fungal sources. This rings alarm bells for organic proponents because of the toxic nature of hexane. It is possible to use a water-extraction process, but the FDA has yet to study and approve this for infant formulas. Vallaeys notes that the National Organic Standards Board actually voted not to allow DHA and ARA extracted with hexane in organic infant formulas, but the USDA has not enforced this. The food policy think tank Cornucopia Institute has reviewed the research and raised serious concerns about the use of hexane-extracted DHA and ARA in formulas, related to how these additives are processed and overseen, and whether they truly provide the touted benefits. These days, it’s difficult to find a formula that doesn’t include added DHA and ARA, but if you are concerned about this issue, Honest Co. Organic Infant Formula is a good choice.


Non-GMO Ingredients


All organic formulas must use non-GMO ingredients, but other formulas also use non-GMO ingredients. Vallaeys explains that the majority of GMO crops grown in the US are genetically engineered to resist pesticides, especially glyphosate, which is the “most commonly used herbicide in the US.” Therefore, “the farmer can spray the weed killer in a field with the GMO corn and soy plants, which won’t be killed by it. Glyphosate is classified by the International Agency for Research on Cancer as probably carcinogenic to humans. It’s why we consider it to be such a concern.” Given the potential risk for even small amounts of pesticide residue, we preferred formulas that use non-GMO ingredients.


Prebiotics and Probiotics


Ready for another set of tongue twisters? Many infant formulas now include prebiotics (usually galacto-oligosaccharides) and probiotics (beneficial bacteria.) Probiotics promote healthy digestion, while prebiotics can strengthen immune systems. Both show up naturally in breast milk, and in large quantities. Research is positive about these enhancements. For example, studies show that probiotics can help babies with diarrhea and viral tummy troubles, while prebiotics alone or in combination with probiotics can help reduce eczema and other allergic reactions. In the fight against fussiness and the quest for a happy baby, prebiotics and probiotics could help you get there. That’s why the majority of our top picks contain one or both of them.


To see more of their research, visit

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Heart Kids for Sweetheart Day – February 14

Heart Kids

Every day, 8 little Aussie babes are born with a heart defect and each week 4 will lose their lives to heart disease. It’s the single biggest killer of bubs under 1 😿
To raise awareness and vital funds Heart Kids have an annual SweetHeart Day campaign and we would love everyone to get involved.

  • We will be donating 50% of proceeds of the sale of these cute baby love heart mittens to the cause. They are available in sizes 0-3 months or 3-6 months in your choice of colour combination. Please email us to order or get in touch via our contact page.
  • If you fancy knitting them yourself the pattern is available from Lion and the Snail and a generous 100% of proceeds of the pattern sale will be donated to Heart Kids
  • If you would like to donate some money for Sweetheart Day 2017 please do so via My Handmade Adventure.

Thank you from all the gorgeous #heartkids 💙

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Pigtail Day for PND week

pigtail day for pnd week

November 13-19 is Perinatal (PND) Awareness Week all around the world.

If you are not aware – one in seven Aussie mums are affected by PND and it is just as common worldwide. To raise awareness of PND and to encourage us mums to ask for help, The White Cloud Foundation invites you to show them support and raise awareness for Perinatal Depression by participating in Pigtail Day for PND week!

Pigtail Day is a national campaign by the White Cloud Foundation that calls on the community to “Wear Pigtails for Perinatal Depression”

Pigtail Day is to women what Movember is to men!

So how can you get involved?

1. ONLINE: Snap a selfie of you wearing Pigtails and post to social media during the week of 13 – 19 November with the hashtag #PigtailsForPerinatalDepression then nominate another mama in your network to post her pigtail selfie. Be sure to #roseanddotco so we can see your efforts!

2. IN THE COMMUNITY: Host a pigtail party during November to raise funds for perinatal depression. The opportunities for fun and games are endless. Here are just a few ideas;
Pigtails and cocktails girls night, Pigtail pamper party, pigtail parade – host a fashion parade, pigtails and pizza movie night…. or host a PIG OUT in PIGTAILS

3. SCHOOLS: We are asking girls and boys to wear pigtails to school during the week of 13- 19 November, and make a gold coin donation. Go all out and hold a Pigtail parade to show off the creative hairstyles. Why not hold a pigtail party and have a “Pig Out” – what a great way to end the school year!

Can your school break the record? We are searching for a school that is ready to take on the pigtail challenge and join us and our media partner channel Seven on Monday 14 November to set the world record for the most people wearing pigtails. If you think your school could rally 200-300 or more kids and are happy to be filmed for TV then the White Cloud Foundation would love to hear from you.

4. AT WORK: Who doesn’t want to wear pigtails to work? Choose a day, a week, or go for a month of pigtails. Ask your employer, colleagues or clients to sponsor you to wear pigtails to work for a day, a week or a month – just imagine the accessories!
Host a “Pig Out” morning or afternoon tea or simply place a piggy bank at your workplace to collect donations.

Why do we need to raise awareness and funds for Perinatal Depression?

In Australian almost 300,000 babies were born in 2014, with one in every seven mothers affected by perinatal Depression more than 42,000 Aussie mums are currently at risk.

Findings from the Mother and Child Health Research (MCHR, now the Judith Lumley Centre), La Trobe University, report that around 10,000 calls are made annually to the National Perinatal Depression Helpline with demand increasing by around 20% year on year.

Fifty-eight percent of Mums calling the helpline have not yet been formally diagnosed and are seeking early intervention.

Over fifty percent of Mothers who have been diagnosed with depression call the helpline because they are not satisfied with their current treatment.

Seventy-nine percent of all women who call the helpline are seeking a referral for treatment.

That is almost 8000 Australian mothers who are asking for help!

The White Cloud Foundation has recently completed a clinical pilot program in conjunction with Queensland University of Technology (QUT) that provided women with early, intensive intervention for PND with great success. This month they launched White Cloud Mums, a practical support program that will see them deliver meals to mothers undergoing treatment for or at risk of Perinatal Depression.

If you’d like to participate in Pigtail Day for PND week, we’d love to see your pics! Remember to hashtag and tag us @roseanddotco #PigtailsForPerinatalDepression and #roseanddotco

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How writing helped me cope with my pregnancy loss

coping with pregnancy loss

Words always had a special power over me. From an early age, I read any book I could get my hands on. I even remember getting up early so I could read my books before having to go to school! Yes, I had been a bookworm since I can remember and with it came a love and passion for writing. I have written short stories for friends, countless essays and always knew that writing will be part of my life.


I had no idea though it would eventually save me as well.


As my life went on, writing stayed with me. It became even my career for 10 years when I worked as a print journalist, both here and overseas. In my private life, writing was more present in the form of writing lists of wishes and dreams and things my husband and I hoped to achieve. One of them was to become parents.

We had talked about it many times and knew we would love to be parents one day but didn’t plan anything.

Then, one day, I felt a bit off. Just not quite how I normally felt. Before I drove to the pharmacy, I knew I was pregnant. The test confirmed what I already suspected – there was a teeny tiny baby on its way!


I was in shock. I didn’t think it would happen so quickly and I didn’t know what to feel. Hubby was over the moon from the moment I told him. I, on the other hand, kept fretting. I was in a terrible, stressful job and was worried how I could fulfill my duties while being pregnant. I could not relax.

Before I could make up my mind, a decision was made for me. I started bleeding one cold Friday and soon cramps started and I ended up in emergency. At first, no one could tell me if the baby was dead or still living. Countless tests followed and ten days of sheer terror and hell before we knew for sure: Our baby had died.

I kept thinking about my loss all the time and caught myself wondering what I had wished would have been said to me straight after.

I felt numb at first, as if I was caught in a terrible nightmare that didn’t belong to me and I had to get out of asap. But this incredibly deep sadness, loneliness and emptiness I felt wouldn’t go away. This was real life – my life. My baby had died. I went to emergency pregnant and left the next morning with an empty womb and a broken soul.


The first few days after my loss were spent in a haze and then everything went dark and stayed dark. I couldn’t make sense of the world and the tears wouldn’t stop flowing. I remember not having any energy for anything and thought that life was pointless. This wouldn’t change for some time but one day I realized, I needed to claw my way back to life. I couldn’t stay paralysed with grief and sadness; I knew this was not healthy. So I turned to the one thing I knew would help me make sense of things – writing.


To start with, I wrote whatever came to my mind and most of it was just gibberish, random snippets of my pain, and raw accusations to the world that was so messed up. Obviously, it was nothing that was worth sharing with anyone. But that wasn’t the point. This rambling on paper was about tackling some of this darkness that was hanging over me. I needed to get rid of this heavy feeling in my chest that made breathing hard.

As time went on, my writing became more coherent. I wrote some poems, which was surprising, as I never thought that to be my thing. I wrote every day – first and foremost, because it helped me with my sanity. I kept thinking about my loss all the time and caught myself wondering what I had wished would have been said to me straight after. For me, no one other than my hubby was there. We were all alone with our pain and grief and it was hell. The next time I sat down to write, I ended up with a guide on what NOT to say to a miscarriage survivor. I wrote that because we had heard some insensitive things and I felt and still feel very strongly about appropriate language after pregnancy loss.


The words just flowed out of me and a mini guide was born. First, I thought nothing of it as I thought no one would ever want to read this or be interested in using kind language after a baby had died. At the same time I had become involved with pregnancy loss support groups and met other women who also lost their babies, at various stages of their pregnancies. It was an unusual topic to bond over but I had made some meaningful connections. They motivated me to keep writing, to conduct more research, talk to more women and bit by bit, a whole book came together – ‘How to survive a miscarriage – a guide for women, their partners, friends and families’.


In my book, I talk about those first few dark weeks and months after the loss, how to develop coping strategies and how to practice mindful self care after loss. It was very important to me to include a whole chapter with advice for others such as family members and friends to ensure they know what NOT to say and do after a loved one suffered a miscarriage.


I never thought that writing could help me one day to survive the worst and darkest time of my life. I am forever grateful for this coping strategy of mine that is so much more – a passion, a never ending love and for the future, a useful tool to help others through their pain.


About the author:

How writing helped me cope with my pregnancy loss

Karin Holmes is a Canberra basedHow to Survive a Miscarriage writer and grief counselor. After her own miscarriage 5 years ago, Karin wrote the ebook ‘How to survive a miscarriage – a guide for women, their partners, friends and families’. The book is available on or

If you would like to connect with Karin, follow her on Instagram @howtosurviveamiscarriage or like her Facebook page ‘How to survive a miscarriage’.

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Make your Nursery Smarter

smart home

Let’s not beat around the bush.  Being a parent is hard, and it never gets any easier with every new tiny human you may bring into the world.  It’s exhausting, stressful, and yet amazing all at the same time.

TISEC mum & bub

So the question is, what do you do to make this job a bit easier?  For a mum or dad who has already gone through the journey of raising a child, you already have a few tricks or habits that can make the day to day activities a bit stress-free for you.  New parents are not as lucky.  They’re just learning what works and what doesn’t for their bub as they go, and getting advice from absolutely everyone on the right way to dress, bathe, feed, soothe their child.  They might be checking every 2 minutes to make sure their tiny human is still breathing after putting them down for the night, and freaking out the second the bub starts to cry.  There’s nothing amazing about that.  

There’s no excuse these days not to have a video monitor in your young child’s room

This is the time for parents to get smart.  It’s time for them to get some peace of mind, and let the wondrous, and ever-evolving world of Smart Home technology to give them a hand.  

As a basic definition, a Smart Home is your house that’s connected to you.  Through the adding of certain devices, you can get your home to communicate to you and gives you the ability to interact with your home.  If you have a keyless lock, your house can tell you if it’s locked or not, and lock itself on your command.  If you have a temperature sensor, your home can tell you if it gets too warm or too cold, and if you want it to, ensure it gets itself back to the right ambient temperature. Consider it sort of like your own personal communication system to hardware of your house.  This sort of tech is not just for your front door, or air con, or living room, and it’s really not complicated at all to use.  You can certainly add it to a nursery or kid’s room to give yourself extra peace of mind that your child safe, even if you’re not in the room with them at all times.

total integrated security

Let’s start with the obvious.  There’s no excuse these days not to have a video monitor in your young child’s room.  Instead of needing a monitor screen like many baby monitors use, why not install a video camera with night vision?  Video cameras are no longer those hideous, bulky, expensive things you see stuck in every corner of your local pizzeria or newsagent.  They’re now sleek, discreet and cost only a few hundred dollars.  With a camera that’s connected to your home through a control panel, you can then check on the bub from your phone, wherever you are.  

If your little one is becoming more mobile, add a contact sensor to any doors, windows, drawers or wardrobes in their room.  These sensors have a magnet attached so that when it’s pulled away from the sensor, such as when a door is opened, the sensor will send alert to your smartphone.  Once installed properly, you’ll know exactly when they’re awake and roaming at night as you will receive alerts when any of these sensors are opened.

Staying on the subject of your tiny travelers, keeping them safe if they leave their bedroom in the middle of the night is worth considering.  Adding smart lighting to your hallway that turns on when there’s movement from their door will at least keep them from roaming the hallway in the dark if they’re coming to your bedroom after having a nightmare or going to the bathroom.  This can be done by adding a small fixture to your existing light switch, which then enables it to be connected to the rest of your smart devices, or a smart light bulb, or a smart plug that you have you hall way lamp plugged into.  

Adding smart devices to your child’s room not only makes them safer, but also gives you a way of knowing what they’re up and checking up on them, anytime and from anywhere.  They’re super easy to install and program on your own, but if you’re not tech savvy or want professional support, definitely consider speaking to a security and Smart Home dealer.  They will be able to give you the advice and products you need, as well as install, program and troubleshoot your system when required.


About the Author

total integrated security

Clementine Holman is the Marketing Director for Total Integrated Security.  Total Integrated Security supplies and installs a wide variety of security systems, Smart Home systems, and CCTV to residential, small business, and commercial clients. Total Integrated security has partnered with to bring Smart Home and Connected Security innovation to Australia. has been in the Smart Home and Smart Security industry since 2000, and is now one of America’s leading providers in Smart Home and security systems technology, with over 2.7 million users worldwide.





title photo credit: Javi_indy

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Top Tips for a Stress-Free Family Break

travel with kids

Whether you are spending a few days on the road or chasing the sun in Bali or Fiji, holidays present a great opportunity for Aussie families to getaway and de-stress.


Claudio Saita, Deputy CEO and Executive Director in Australia for Tokio Marine, underwriters for World2Cover travel insurance, said that with overseas travel for kids on the rise and increasing time pressures placed on parents, a hassle free holiday has never been more important.


“Outbound travel for Aussie youngsters has increased across the board in the last decade. This shows that families are definitely exploring the world, but it also highlights the importance of adequate cover to ensure peace of mind and solid planning to support the best holiday experience. Further, with Australians donating more than $2.1 billion in unpaid overtime every week it’s clear a happy and healthy holiday is just what the doctor ordered.”


To help maximise the family holiday experience, the team at World2Cover has provided these top tips:


  • Travel sickness is most common in children between two and 12 years old and can be unpleasant for everyone. To help avoid queasiness in the car, ditch the books or tablets and instead get your child to focus on playing games like ‘I Spy’ which direct their attention out the window. If flying other natural remedies include wearing acupressure wristbands and chewing ginger lollies.
  • For kids, the sensation of having their ears pop during a flight can be especially painful and even scary at first. Depending on their age, consider giving infants a bottle of water or juice to sip from and older children a sweet to suck throughout take-off and landing.  Specialist in-flight earplugs are also good alternatives as long as your child does not have a cold or sinus congestion.
  • Stomach upsets are a common medical problem affecting travellers of all ages, but younger children are at higher risk of tummy problems as they are still building their immune system. Avoid risky foods such as seafood and ensure bottled water and hand sanitiser is always packed, especially when travelling in less developed countries.
  • Holidays are a great time to get outside but that means sun protection and hydration are critical. Children are much more prone to dehydration than adults because their bodies don’t cool down as efficiently. Offer them lots of drinks and regularly apply high SPF sunscreen. Try to avoid unnecessary midday exposure when the sun’s rays are at their strongest.
  • Swimmer’s ear can be triggered by over exposure to water and is common for kids who spend lots of time in the hotel pool or the sea. To prevent this, keep swim sessions short and dry your child’s ears thoroughly when they get out.   
  • Youngsters often love animals and want to pet these ‘new friends’, but stray cats and dogs can often carry fleas and even rabies in developing countries. Warn your children of the dangers of being bitten and stay extra vigilant if you come across a stray animal. If your child is bitten be sure to take them straight to a doctor.
  • Mosquito bites are itchy, unpleasant and can cause serious skin rashes if left untreated. Invest in sprays and room plug-ins with a high level of DEET, and to be extra safe, use mosquito nets at night and on your pram. Keep an antihistamine lotion to hand, just in case. If travelling when pregnant be sure to check up the latest information on the Zika virus.


Designed with families in mind, World2Cover provides Australian travellers with comprehensive cover that extends to children for free, including ‘big kids’ aged up to 25 who are holidaying with parents and grandparents.

For more information on the coverage options from World2Cover, visit


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Enrich your child’s life by teaching them another language!



In my opinion, there are few greater gifts you could give your child than the opportunity to learn a second language.  In fact, it has been said that having another language is like possessing a second soul (Charlemagne (742/7 – 814), King of the Franks.)  

We are fortunate that in Australia we speak English, which is a universal language, and therefore a lot of doors around the world automatically open for us. However, fluency in a second language will open up a whole new world of possibilities to your child. The great thing is that children naturally have the ability to learn language at a faster rate than an adult student, so the timing is perfect.

Continue reading Enrich your child’s life by teaching them another language!

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5 money-saving hacks for young Australian families

Money Saving Hacks


by Bessie Hassan | Money Expert at

Kids are expensive – whether you’re signing them up for swimming lessons or rushing to the shops to buy new clothes because they’ve grown at a shocking rate since last winter – handing over hard earned cash is a daily occurrence.


And the more children you have, the tougher it is on your wallet. The most recent research on the cost of raising kids in Australia by AMP and The University of Canberra, found the average family with two kids will spend $458 a week on their children.


Of course, the little darlings are totally worth it, but if you can save money while still giving them everything they need it’s a win/win. As a mother-of-two, I know how quickly the expenses of raising children can add up.


In fact, a significant portion of our family budget is spent on everything from childcare to soccer lessons and doctor’s visits. A recent study found that Australian households fork out $592 on average during the school holiday period and 40% of parents feel ‘burdened’ by holiday costs.

Keeping your kids happy, healthy and entertained doesn’t have to cost a fortune

So here are my top money-saving hacks for young families so you can keep them happy and healthy, without damaging your hip pocket.



  • Reduce the cost of childcare: Childcare is one of biggest expenses for many families with young children, so finding budget-friendly options will have a huge impact on the finances. Look at other ways to reduce the cost of childcare. For example, if you work part-time, get together with a friend who also needs child care to share days. Each working parent will have both sets of children on their days off, or otherwise share the cost of a nanny.
  • Join a swapping club. Get together with other parents and exchange kids’ clothes, books and toys. Kids grow out of their own stuff quickly, but another child’s toys or clothes will be as good as new.


    • Low-cost activities: Local councils and community groups offer plenty of free kids activities – from sporting events to art classes. Especially before they are school age, give the expensive clubs a miss and immerse in the variety of classes on offer in your local area that don’t cost a thing.
    • Live in catchment of your desired public school: Private school fees are an enormous outlay and the fees continue to climb, and this is just one major expense we need to manage (not to mention other ongoing debts that need to be serviced). Some might consider it a fairly ‘extreme’ strategy of moving house solely to be in a specific school’s catchment area, but in reality it’s a wise financial move. Encouragingly, some of the most highly regarded government schools across the country are in suburbs where the median house price is still affordable. The earlier you can start planning for your kids’ education the better, as you will give yourself enough time to compare catchment areas and their costs of living side by side.
    • Reduce school holiday costs: Parents are putting themselves under enormous financial strain to ensure their kids having an action-packed holiday, and mothers are feeling the pressure the most with 42% feeling the pinch compared to 38% of fathers. With beach trips, eating out and visits to the cinema burning a hole in the hip pocket, try and shift focus from costly activities to catching up with family and friends during this period.


  • Be smart with your savings. Park your hard-earned cash into a high-interest savings account and meet the conditions to earn the maximum variable rate. This can help you build a buffer for any unexpected costs that may arise, such as school excursions or medical bills.



Keeping your kids happy, healthy and entertained doesn’t have to cost a fortune. Think of ways that you can cut down on expenses and you won’t look back.


Remember, kids can have as much fun playing backyard cricket with the family or baking cookies as they would at a theme park!

Bessie Hassan is the Money Expert at, Australia’s most visited comparison website.



Photo Credit

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Motherhood, Identity Crises and why it will all be Okay

Motherhood, Identity Crises and why it will all be OK

I felt so prepared for my first born. I read all the books, bought every recommend item and googled all the things. He arrived with support and love in spades. But there was something I didn’t expect. Something I wasn’t prepared for. I didn’t count on the identity crisis that followed my son’s birth.

I’m not the only woman to have experienced this sense of loss when having a baby. Ever noticed how maternity wards are full of women with exactly the same name? How are you feeling, mummy? How did he feed today, mummy? You have a baby and they become everything. Your focus. Everyone else’s focus. And as everyone focussed on him, I felt myself fading. Just a little bit. Not quite as sure-footed as I once was.

It’s a strange situation to find yourself in. After years of independence, I became dependent on my husband, just as my little one was dependant on me. Everything blurred together. And it wasn’t just the sleep deprivation. It was hard to find where I began and ended in this new role. And it worried me.

Who was I? If I wasn’t working, what value did I contribute to society? How much of the old me made sense in the context of motherhood? Would my body ever look like it once did? Would my marriage? Would my friendships? How could I be a good mum, obsessing over these essentially selfish questions? How much of me was okay to claim back? And when? Do all new mums feel like this?

My children are older now. The title of mum no longer feels strange. I’m more comfortable with that part of myself. I have rediscovered who I am and no longer feel lost. I’ve found the things that make me happy and I make time for them. I’ve found peace where I am career-wise (some days). I find intrinsic value in motherhood, even when it feels under-appreciated. Our family has a routine and a rhythm that makes sense for us. I recognise this small window of time for what it is. A time of huge sacrifice and enormous reward. A time to treasure that doesn’t last all that long.

The days are long and the years are short. It’s so trite and so true. I look at my older boys now, and I wonder how they grew up so quickly. I wonder if I lost something in those early months, being so preoccupied with re-defining myself. Maybe I could have just let it go. Maybe I could have been okay with not knowing. I could have trusted that I would evolve with motherhood.

Perhaps you are in that space. Totally in love with your new baby but wondering where you went. If you’re trying to find out who you are in this new role, then you aren’t alone. So many of my friends have felt this with newborns in their arms. Women with impressive resumes and huge responsibilities, suddenly fighting to define themselves.

I wish I could go back and tell myself that it’s okay. You don’t have to figure it all out. You have become someone new as you welcomed someone new. It’s a huge change and you don’t have to have all the answers. Any big change, any new role, shapes us and alter us. Sometimes we don’t even feel it happening and we only realise how far we have come when we look back. This is the biggest change you have experienced in your lifetime. Things will shift around. Your priorities will change. You don’t have to search so frantically for all the answers. They will find you. Eventually. As will sleep, hot coffee, intimacy with your partner and fun times with friends. It all finds you again, eventually. 

About the author

Robynathe mummy and the minx believes in the powers of kindness, chocolate and finding beauty in the mundane. Before having children she worked in the corporate legal world. Now she works in the mud-stained and laughter-filled world of mothering small boys. Writing is her creative passion and great escape. As the editor of the Mummy and the Minx she explores how mothers can hold onto themselves whilst holding onto their babies. She also freelance consults in the areas of IT, law and social media. Once, she tried to give up coffee. It did not end well. You can follow her adventures on FacebookInstagram and (when Facebook is down) Twitter .

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How to host a Sip and See

 How to Host a Sip and See

A ‘welcome to the world party’ for your little bub!

By Holly Brunnbauer


The moment you share the arrival of your new baby with the world (via Facebook of course), all of your family and friends will be squealing with delight to meet them. Any mother who has gone through this before will recall how overwhelming and sometimes darn annoying it is to have a revolving door of visitors in the hospital and at home. This is exactly why a sip and see event is what you need. Ummm…ok but what the heck is a sip and see? It is basically a birth after-party where you set a date and time for close friends and family to come over and meet the baby all at once. Obviously as the name implies, drinks are provided for sipping and the baby is passed around for seeing. In this post I will share with you the down-low on how to host a sip and see and lots of extra tips to help make it easier for you.


Who do I invite?

As with any event you host, the guest list is completely up to you. Unlike a baby shower where only women are traditionally invited, a sip and see is inclusive of both women and men and also children. You might decide that it’s an exclusive family event or perhaps you are happy for family to pop in at any time and want to only include your dear friends. It is completely up to you.



Prepare before

Decide on your guest list before your baby is born. With all the wonderful, new-parent chaos going on, you will most likely forget people. It won’t be intentional, it’s just that you will be in the thick of mum life and little details like this will get lost.

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