From ‘baby brain’ to ‘mumnesia’

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I remember life before children (well, just about), when my memory was slightly more intact and I really only had to think about myself and my own schedule. But now, with a 4 year old, 6 year old, husband, career and two mischievous kittens, my memory appears to have gone astray. These days it’s very much a case of ‘if it ain’t written down, it’s gonna be forgotten’.
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Surviving sleep deprivation

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If there is one thing that is testing my mission to find calm and harmony at the moment, it’s lack of sleep. I am rubbish without a good night’s sleep. So having spent the last few weeks with one or both of my children waking up every night, I am a proper grump today! While my children and husband find it really easy to get back to sleep again, I spend the rest of the night tossing and turning and listening to the harmony of snoresRead More »

Business trips: How to cope with leaving the kids

I’m fortunate to travel as part of my day job. I say fortunate now, but I remember the first time I left my children for a business trip to the USA. I spent weeks worrying about it. How would they cope? How would I cope? What if something happened to them? What if something happened to me? Quite often the thought of being away is worse than the reality but I’ve learnt over the years that there are things I can do to make the whole trip run more smoothly for me,Read More »

Work-life balance for parents – my top 10 tips

Finding work-life balance is very much still a journey of discovery for me. Since becoming a mum six years ago, I’ve had the sometimes very difficult task of balancing being a working mum, wife, researcher, writer and generally trying to fit all the pieces of our lives together in some form of organised way. Sometimes the pieces fit together nicely and sometimes I feel like I’m flailing around in the dark trying to find a pause button.

I know I’m not alone. Many of us struggle to find a balance between work and family life and, somewhere in between, trying to find some time for our own rest and relaxation. I am no expert at this (you should see my to-do list!) but I have learnt some coping strategies and techniques that work for me, so I wanted to share my top 10 tips in the hope that it might help others:Read More »

A surprisingly stress-free kids’ party

Last week my children turned 4 and 6. They share a birthday (still not sure how we planned that!) so it means we have managed to get away with a joint birthday party for the last few years. I’m hoping we can get away with that for as long as possible! I find the whole mission of planning and preparing for a kids’ party harrowing. After a couple of years of organising parties for the ever-increasing numbers of friends, I decided this year was going to be different. I was not going to stress and worry, and I was going to approach this party with a calmer, more organised approach. Even when I put my back out days before the party, I still was able to stay calm.Read More »

Morning routine harmony (or lack of!)

Mornings are often the most chaotic part of my day. By the time I’ve dropped my daughter at nursery and taken my son to school I feel like I’ve done a full days’ work and need a couple of hours to recover!

I have learnt that pressing the snooze button on my alarm clock isn’t worth the crazy rushing around to get everyone out of the house by 8am. But despite getting everything ready the night before, my attempts for a stress-free morning are often thwarted by a 5 year old who has no sense of urgency and is quite happy to stand around in his underpants all morningRead More »