The new year is here and so I have done what many people do at this time and think about the next twelve months, the changes I want to make and the things I want to achieve. But, I have one thing to admit. I am a serial New year resolutions maker and breaker. I do the same thing each time. I write a big list of things I want to do and change, and then as the month draws on, and changes haven’t happened so quickly or things have not gone to plan, I give up. I get frustrated, annoyed and feel like a failure. It isn’t the most productive things to do.
However this year I want to try something new. I want to focus on smaller goals I can achieve that are working to long term changes I want to make. I want to focus on my lifestyle this year and my work. But what I want to achieve isn’t going to happen overnight. So this month I am implementing some habit changes and small goals to help me get to where I want to be. I have recorded a video talking about it in more detail below if you would like to hear my ramblings as I feed my baby girl her breakfast. In brief this month I want to:
Start my weight loss journey
Get organised at home, in work and with Logans schoolwork
Are you a serial new year resolutions maker and breaker like me? What are your plans for 2021? Check out my video below.
There is no doubt about it, 2020 was a rough year. For many of us! The covid-19 outbreak has shocked us to the core, and while I never expected high changes when the clock struck midnight to arrive into 2021, I am hopeful of a better year.
That being said I couldn’t mark the turn of a new year without thinking about my favourite moment of 2020. There were some incredible highs even in the toughest of times, and one of those times was our baby girl being born. She really has slotted into the family like I never thought possible.
After trying for a few years and the sky gaining three of the brightest stars, we didn’t need to wait anymore. Our baby girl joined my husband and I and our two boys, and we couldn’t be happier. That was my moment. The 3rd of March 2020. Before the lockdown and schools shutting, before all of the craziness. For a few weeks it was normal. While it hasn’t been the first year of her life I expected or planned, it has certainly still been one to remember. I have made a video of our year if you fancy taking a look at some of the other memorable moments.
Here’s to 2021 and whatever it has planned for us.
Meal planning is something that I always intend to do, and I do really have the best intentions. But often I can forget to plan in advance, and then I have a mad dash to the cupboards and and curse myself for not pulling certain things out of the freezer in time. We have all been there. However, I am determined to get more organised and so I thought I would share the meal plan that I have just come up with for the week ahead.
Pork a la Creme
This is one of my husbands favourite meals and is a classic Delia recipe his mum told me about when we first met. I had never heard of it before, but it is a lovely flavoursome dish with paprika and uses pork fillet. It isn’t the most healthiest of dishes, but it certainly feels like a nice treat for a Monday. I will serve it with rice and potato croquettes.
Tuesday evenings are a busy one for me when it comes to after school because I need to get Logan off to football training. So ideally I am trying to use my slow cooker on these days and with it being winter it is the perfect opportunity to be organised with it. I use the Schwartz mix for my casseroles as they are so easy. I add in whatever vegetables I have to it. This week will be carrots and parsnips and I will serve it with mash potato and Yorkshire puddings. Logan loves this as well so it is a meal we can all enjoy.
I always try and mix things up in the week and try and avoid having the same sort of dishes, as in, casserole after casserole. I tend to cook the same things a lot, and I am trying to mix things up a little. So today I plan on cooking chicken enchiladas and serving with some chips and salad. I use the Old Del Paso kits because again, during the week I need the simplicity.
Chilli Con Carne
Another dish I plan on putting in the slow cooker. Thursday is usually another busy evening as Logan has football training again, but with lockdown I am unsure even if it will be going ahead. But, even so, I plan to put everything in the slow cooker and serve this with rice, grated cheese and sour cream.
All being well our eldest will be with us for the weekend, so I want a wholesome family meal that I can dish up for everyone. So it is going to be toad in the hole. I saw a recipe on Lorraine show that included leeks with the sausages and it looked so tasty. I will likely serve this with mash, mushy peas and gravy.
Not sure what sort of take away we will be having but I think it may be either KFC or a curry. A takeaway is always part of the meal plan, I need a day off sometimes.
Sunday roast dinner – Pulled Pork
We will be having a Sunday dinner this week and it is always a staple on the meal plan when I am organised. I love pulled pork, so will get that in the slow cooker early in the morning and leave it cooking all day. I am going to serve it with roast potatoes, carrots, parsnips and Savoy cabbage. One of my most favourite meals of the week for sure.
When I first became a mum, I had huge expectations of exactly the type of parent I would be. There were moments where I used to think the TV wouldn’t be a babysitter, that my child wouldn’t be using an iPad, and let’s not forget the visions I had of my child eating only nutritious food and wouldn’t be the chocoholic he is today. But fast forward to today and I am not that mother, far from it. There are things that have turned out great, but there are situations that I assumed I would react differently to.
1. Mum guilt will never leave you
Being in some form of lockdown due to Covid-19 since the end of march has taken its toll, there is no denying that. Mum guilt would always rear its ugly head every now and again, but this year has certainly taken the biscuit. This week has been half term, and in tier 3 restrictions mixed with typical Manchester weather, it has been tough. We have had to stay at home. With our baby being 7 months old, she’s full on right now, and with a 7 year old boy that wants stimulation and attention, I have felt stretched. The guilt has been unreal. Logan has spent way too many hours playing fortnite, and not enough time spent with me. The mum guilt reached a climax come Halloween, with no trick or treating allowed, I genuinely felt like I’d let my son down. It wasn’t my fault. It was out of my control. But yet here was the guilt once more. I ended up creating some sort of make shift spooky Halloween bath time surprise with slime. Logan seemed to love it and it eased the guilt momentarily. Mum guilt will never leave you, but know this that there will be times when it peaks and when it subsides. Don’t let it get to you!
2. You cannot fight your sons battles
We are at that stage right now with Logan where he is loving playing video games and talking to his friends online. Fortnite is the game of choice, and while I am not so keen on the game itself, or the amount of time I let him play on it, queue mum guilt once more, it certainly got us through lockdown and times after school where I have felt torn between my children. The one thing I have had to learn, especially this week it seems, is that I can’t fight my sons battles. As much as I want to. Being kicked out of games, hearing them say to leave him out. It’s not easy. Don’t be fooled, Logan can be just as bad, but all I want to do is put that headset on and say stop it! I can’t fight his battles. He needs to learn that actions have consequences, and subsequently that things won’t always go his way. I know I have more battles of this nature to come, and will have to resist the urge of interference again in the future.
3. Meal planning helps, do it more often
There has been way too many nights this week that I have scrambled to the cupboards wondering what I am going to cook for tea. It’s a short and simple solution, meal plan. Write it down, stick to it, and shop in advance. When I do it, and I stick with it, there is less stress, less pressure. Will I ever learn?
4. I am not a Pinterest mum, and that’s okay
Who else scrolls through pinterest and gets many ideas of crafts, bakes and play inspiration thinking that they can do the same? Me! Am I the only one? Pinterest is a great site. I love it. But I have to be honest, I am just not a pinterest mum. I long to be able to do the crafts, and create the wonderful things I longingly browse through on a Sunday morning. However, I just can’t do it. This week I tried to create my own wrapping paper for my husbands birthday. Hand prints of Logan’s and Luna’s footprints. In my head, it was going to look amazing. While the end product looks, at best, mediocre, the carnage of creating it was something else. Logan was easy to sort out. He did his handprints, then straight in the bath. Great! Luna was more difficult. How do people manage to get wonderful prints of their babies hands and feet? It ended in tears, me and Luna. The thought was there, I guess.
5. That no matter how terrible you think you are, your children don’t have the same view
Tonight, as I tucked my son up in bed, I apologised for being such a rubbish mum recently. I’ve not had much patience recently, and I have felt so guilty because of the current situation, the changes in his life, and well, having a new baby has stretched me more than I thought it would. He simply said that I wasn’t a rubbish mum, that I was the best mum ever! He loved his slime bath that I panic ordered through Amazon Prime, he’s loved having extra time on his game, and he understands more than I give him credit for that things are hard right now. I’m the best mum to him, he’s happy with me, and well, what more can I ask for?
So there you have it, five things on motherhood this week. Have a great week ahead.
There is no easy way to discuss this, because I genuinely think that people will feel different. But I have also found that it is still a subject that isn’t discussed enough, so I wanted to share how I have been feeling about it all. I guess pregnancy after loss was always going to be a rollercoaster of emotions. Some happy, positive and feelings of being overjoyed. Sometimes feeling like you are in a dark place of fear and anxiety. I don’t think the conflict of emotion will go away until there is a baby in our arms.
Loss isn’t easy to navigate
Going through an ectopic pregnancy and the two miscarriages changed me as a person, in ways I can’t begin to describe in words. I am not the happy, care-free individual I once was. I am so much more aware of hidden stories and things people go through behind closed doors, because I have been there. I break far more easily and probably rely on my husband way too much to build me back up again. However, while I wish we never had to go through what we did, I also want to take some positives from it. I’m so much more grateful for the things I do have in my life. I am much more aware of emotions, and I guess, to give myself a little credit, I am a far stronger person today than I ever was.
Today, as it stands today, 30 weeks pregnant, and I wanted to talk about the conflict of emotions that I have been feeling since being pregnant and to reach this stage, when my other pregnancies haven’t been so fortunate. To say that it hasn’t been easy will be an understatement. I have a conflict of emotion on a daily basis from feeling happy and excited to feeling anxious and worried from one minute to the next.
Those early days can often be hard
Back in the early days of pregnancy I had a huge fear every time I went to the bathroom. It was an expectation to find something was wrong. That history was going to repeat itself. I also felt hideous with pregnancy symptoms, albeit not as tough as some people have, and I felt conflicted to moan about those symptoms because I felt like I had to be this positive and happy person to be pregnant all of the time.
Being pregnant was a dream, it was something myself and my husband wanted for so long. So to moan about something that you have wanted felt so morally wrong. Had I have not been through the miscarriages, would I think twice about complaining of sickness or tiredness? Definitely not as I certainly didn’t when I was pregnant with my son.
It can often be easier to just talk, so I decided to discuss it openly through a video. This went live on YouTube and IGTV a few months ago.
Let’s hope that if you find yourself in this situation of being pregnant after loss that the worry you feel. So that the fear, and the anxiety will feel more normalised. It’s totally normal to feel down and out.