My labour story!


This is a tale that I’ve been reliving a lot lately as Arthur’s 1st birthday is only a few days away. I am constantly thinking, “What was I doing this time last year?” I think it’s quite normal to get emotional at your baby turning 1 but I have another reason…my beloved Mam isn’t around to see it and everything I was doing this time last year, was with her. We were going for long walks, going for spicy currys and she was my birthing partner.

Arthur was due on 1st November 2016 but I was booked in to be induced on the 8th November. I have had Vasculitis for a few years so they weren’t letting me go any longer than a week over. After a failed sweep on my due date, off I went to the hospital to get things going.

I was booked in at 3.30pm and of course, they had an emergency so I had to wait. I finally had my first pessary at about 8pm. The midwife gave me a sweep at the same time and said my cervix was fully closed and quite hard and that it was probably going to take a few tries before labour started. I was on a ward so my Mam was sent home and told to come back the next morning. I managed to fall asleep watching America’s election results coming in (yes, Arthur was born on the day Donald Trump was elected and I’m sure it’s going to be the winning question on a quiz one day) to be woken up at 10pm with my first contraction.

Now, those of you that have been induced will know there’s no gradual build up and that first contraction is bloody strong. I pressed my buzzer after about an hour and the midwife came and offered me some paracetamol and to run me a bath. F*****G PARACTAMOL??????? Anyway I took it and had my bath. My contractions were every 4 minutes all through the night. I was moving around and bouncing on my ball and nothing helped. At 8am the next morning (still only being 2cm) I called my mam and she rushed through and I was moved to delivery. Another examination and I was 2.5cm!!! I cried.

At this point I took the gas and air and everything becomes a bit of a blur. The midwife broke my waters and Arthur had pooped which meant I was now restricted to the bed so Arthur’s heart could be monitored. His head was blocking my bladder so I also had to have a catheter. I was trying to eat breadsticks to keep my energy up then a contraction would come so I grabbed the gas and air which resulted in breadstick been sprayed everywhere. At about 2pm I was 5cm. At 3pm I was 6 and by 4.30pm I was 10cm. During this time I had told my mam if she didn’t organise me a C-section I would never speak to her again and I had shouted at the midwife that it was her fault I was missing my Strictly Come Dancing Rehearsals with Danny Mac.

I started pushing. It was too late for an epidural so gas and air was going to have to see me through. I honestly thought I was dying. 2 hours of pushing and Arthur was back to back and totally stuck. After a tug on that dreaded red knob on the wall 6 doctors/nurses/spectators (I have no idea who the hell they were) came running in to the rescue. Within 2 minutes my legs were been fastened up on stirrups and the bottom half of the bed had gone. I had to have an episiotomy and ventouse. I was in so much pain all over that I couldn’t even tell when I was having a contraction to push so a midwife was holding my tummy and telling me when it was coming. I have no idea where my mam was. She was probably distraught in the corned thinking about what sort of trauma counselling she needed.

Arthur was safely born at 7.11pm on 9th November weighing 6lbs 10oz. And wow! The pain disappeared as soon as I held him in my arms. I was being stitched up, had people shoving things up my bum (I think they said to stop me getting piles from pushing so much) and god knows what else.

I managed to get up and have a shower. The floor looked like someone had been murdered. There was blood everywhere. Once I (and the room) was cleaned up my dad came in. They both left and Arthur had a really bad night. His head was all ripped and so sore from the ventouse so he was given some paracetamol. I was so sore and struggling to get up from the bed to settle him and breastfeed him. My mam came back the next day and I was in and our of sleep. It was so good to have someone there to jut pass him to me rather than me getting up. I was discharged that night and had the best bath in the world.

So there you have it. My labour story. It was horrendous but my, it was worth it!

Food for an (almost) 1 year old!

If you’ve seen my Vlogs you will have seen me making a few different things for Arthur and I. So I thought I’d share some of my favourite recipes for food that you can give to a 1 year old. Snacks aside (because lets face it, what adult wants to eat broccoli cake) I enjoy these meals as well. I don’t have enough time to make separate meals for everyone.

So number 1 you will have seen me make in Sunday’s Vlog. It’s the Chicken, Bacon and Leek Risotto. This is a Slimming World recipe so it’s syn free and it’s Arthur’s absolute favourite! He literally ate two portions in one sitting on Sunday.

Serves 4 adults

What you need:

1.75 litres of boiling low sodium chicken stock (in my Vlog you will have seen that I was cooking a joint of ham in the slow cooker so I used the stock from that)

Fry Light

8 bacon rashes with the fat cut off and roughly chopped

2 large or 3 medium sized leeks chopped up

300f dried risotto rice

4 chicken breasts (or 5 skinless and boneless thighs), cooked and chopped/shredded

a pinch of saffron



Pour the stock into a saucepan and keep on a low-medium heat.

Spray a large non-stick frying pan with fry light and place on a high heat. Add the bacon and fry until cooked. Remove the bacon from the pan with a slotted spoon and set aside. Spray the same pan with a touch more fry light and add the leeks. Cook for about 5 minutes until they are soft.

Add the rice and stir in with the leeks for about 1 minute. Add chicken and saffron, stir and turn heat down to medium. Add stock one spoonful at a time. Stir often and as soon as the rice has absorbed the liquid add another spoonful. Continue this until rive is fully cooked. It should take around 25minutes.

Add bacon and give it a good stir.

For the adults you can add some salt but I find that it doesn’t really need any.



Next up one of Arthur favourite snacks. Broccoli muffins.


This recipe makes approx 12 mini muffins. I use standard fairy cake cases rather than muffin cases and they are suitable to freeze.

What you need:

150g self-raising flour

1/2 tsp baking powder

2 broccoli florets, cooked and finely chopped

2tbsp of grated cheddar cheese

50g butter, melted and cooled

125ml whole milk

1 egg, lightly beaten



Heat oven to 170degrees C fan (190 normal)

Sieve together flour and baking powder, then stir in the broccoli and cheese.

Beat together the butter, milk and egg and then add it to the flour mixture. Stir until combined.

Spoon into approx. 12 cake cases and bake for about 10-12 minutes. They will rise and be golden brown when cooked.


Here is the link to my Vlog where you can see me making the Risotto:

If you like it then please hit subscribe click on the bell so you don’t miss the next instalment!


So there you have it. Two very easy recipes for your 1 year old!


MamaB x





What I bought on Amazon in October

So it’s the start of another month. It’s November and you know what that means? Only 1 more pay day until Christmas (assuming December’s pay comes at the end of December after Christmas).

Are you prepared? Have you started/finished/thought about Christmas Shopping? Well this year I have and I am almost finished. I started early this year as I have spent most of the year on maternity leave so I knew that a few months pay at the end of the year just wasn’t going to cover Christmas Shopping, parties and all of the food, booze etc you need.

So what I bought on Amazon in October is mostly Christmas presents for Arthur, other babies I know and my sister. And I have to say I picked up some bargains.

Let’s get stuck in!

First up we have this adorable Elf Outfit for Arthur. How cute is he going to look! It cost £5.97 and comes in a range of sizes from 0-24months.


Next up we have  a Wooden Puzzle Clock at only £2.56. This will be a Christmas present for Arthur. There’s a few different puzzles on this list. It keeps him busy and at this price you can’t go wrong.



Next is the Wooden Alphabet Jigsaw at £3.15. Arthur’s still probably a bit too little for this but hey ho!



Then there is the Wooden Shape Jigsaw Puzzle at £1.99. Can you see a pattern emerging? I actually bought 2 of these and I’m going to give one to my friends baby for Christmas with the Manhattan Teether you will see below!



As mentioned above here is the Manahttan Rattle and Sensory Teether which was £9.99. If you’ve got a teething baby and you’ve never come across this before then I can’t recommend this enough. I have one for Arthur and when he was a bit younger this would keep him entertained for ages! I first came across it in a baby sensory group I used to go to and he wouldn’t put it down so I bought him one.



Then I got 3 Baby Farm Puzzles at £5.99 each. One for Arthur and one for a friend of the families baby for Christmas and the third is for a girl who I met at a baby group’s son who turned 1 yesterday.



The last toy on the list is these Wooden Hand Rattles at £1.59. I ordered 2 of these as well. One for Arthur and one to go with my friends baby along with the Manhattan Teether and the puzzle.



Next we have something I am very excited to try. Maybe this makes me sad, I don’t know. Mane&Tail Shampoo and Conditioner. I’ve read some amazing reviews about how it leaves your hair thicker, shinier and more manageable so we shall see. I got 2 of these because this is a Christmas gift my sister will LOVE! You can get the shampoo and conditioner for £7.98 which is really cheap compared to some other good brands out there.



Now something else for me, although not very exciting. I’ve been trying to do some running so I got myself the iPhone Armband which is Sweatproof &Weatherproof. It also has a little pouch for your keys and a little bit of money. Now I can listen to music in the hope it carries me round. It was £7.79 and I have to say I was actually quite impressed with the quality of it for a bargain!



Finally, something that’s long over due and it can’t come fast enough as I’ve dropped my new phone about 3 times today is the OtterBox Strada in Burnt Saddle Brown. I’m a massive believer in a good phone cover and I usually go for the Apple ones but I fancied a change so I picked this up for £24.99. You can get different colours that are cheaper but I’m a massive fan of the whole burnt saddle/tan colours.


So there you have it. That’s everything I bought from Amazon in October. Some stuff hasn’t been delivered yet so when it does I’ll pop a little review up.

Over and out!

MamaB x

I’ll never give my baby a bottle again!


Weaning off bottle.


Good morning everyone! I hope your week is off to a flying start!

Yesterday I had a mini meltdown when Arthur was having his dinner.


I’ve done the whole baby-led weaning thing so him feeding himself wasn’t what did it. Over the last week I’ve been trying to wean him off his bottle ready for him turning 1 in just over a week. I wasn’t really putting any pressure on it and was just going with the flow. He always drinks water out of his sippy cup or a cup with a straw (the cup in the pic) so he knows how they work but he has still ALWAYS had his milk from a bottle.

So I decided to pop his milk in his straw cup/bottle thing and he didn’t like it at all. So I just went with what he wanted and popped it back into his regular bottle and let him get on with it. I did this with every bottle for about 5 or 6 days. Then yesterday morning I did it again and he drank the whole bottle through the straw. I got him dressed and went through the whole morning routine and then lunch time came and again, milk was drank through the straw bottle. Then bed time came and again, the whole lot through the straw. Even his bedtime bottle, he fed himself. He didn’t even want his bedtime bottle.

Now, I know this is really good and I should be happy but my o my I got upset as it suddenly hit me…I will probably never feed my baby again! Even when he was on bottles he was giving them to himself over the last few months, apart from when he had Croup, but I didn’t think twice about it.

Where has my baby gone? In just over a week he will be 1! He’s just about walking. He feeds himself. He goes to nursery two mornings a week while I work and LOVES it. He’s becoming so independent and it’s so great but selfishly I hate it. I just want to go back, for one day, to being on maternity leave when he would settle for nobody but me. And have a long cuddle where he’s not pushing me away so he can practise his new walking skills, dive in his ball pool in the middle of the sitting room floor or just crawl around looking for mischief. I don’t consider myself to be a selfish person but just listen to me!


But, there is 1 thing he doesn’t know. Every night when he’s in a deep sleep and just before I go to bed I sneak in to his room, pick him up out of his cot, cradle him in my arms and sink down in my nursing chair in his room and have the best, relaxing, cuddle where he isn’t distracted with everything going on around him or trying to push me away to go and play. Anyone else do this?


Baby Swimming Lessons

I loved the idea of baby swimming lessons before Arthur was even born. He’s my first baby and I had an image in my head of him being a few days old and taking him swimming. Him lying in his back looking so peaceful and me cooing over him. Turns out I was massively naive and I have absolutely no idea how mams go swimming a few days after giving birth. I’m not sure if you can get adult swim nappies like you can for babies? And even then I don’t think it would do the job.

Anyway, instead I decided to book him his first chapter of swimming lessons for Christmas and they started in the February. By then he was 12 weeks old. In my not so expert opinion, this was a great age to start.

Arthur absolutely LOVED it. I got him a little wetsuit so he wouldn’t be cold even though the company I booked with only use pools suitable for babies meaning the water is quite warm. There were 8 mams and babies in my group, all babies were around the same age as Arthur. We sang songs, splashed about and every mam had a stupid grin on her face watching how much fun our little babies were having.

The lesson lasted half an hour which was perfect. Any longer and the babies would get fed up, tired, hungry and would make the next lesson a not so positive experience. After the lesson, we all headed to the changing rooms to get ourselves and babies dried and dressed. Now this is a nightmare. There were only 2 cubicles which meant we all had to get ready in front of each other. Now this doesn’t really bother me but new mams with post pregnancy bodies can be a tad self conscious. I’m not sure how they could get around this apart from to change venue to somewhere with better changing facilities. There was also nowhere to get the babies ready apart from the floor. The wet floor. Our best bet was to wrap babies in a towel and put them on the floor while we get ready. Then put baby in new dry towel and get them dried and dressed on your knee. If you get baby ready first then chances are you’re going to have to put dry baby back on wet floor while you get ready which, let’s face it, would be counterproductive.

As I’m sure you know when you go swimming you’re always hungry after. The same goes for babies. I was the only breastfeeder in my group so everyone else gave their babies a bottle and were on their way. I used to sit and feed Arthur for about an hour after the lesson finished. So a half an hour lesson turns into a full half a day mission. Apparently babies sleep well after swimming. Arthur didn’t. When he was a baby baby he always refused to sleep during the day apart from when we were in the car and This didn’t change if he’d been swimming or not.

So the 10 lessons finished and I didn’t really want to fork out another £150 (yup that’s £150, not a typo) for another 10. I was a single Mam, on maternity leave with rent and bills to pay. I just couldn’t afford it. I did still continue to take Arthur to our local pool (£4 entry) about once a fortnight to make sure he didn’t forget anything he had been taught.

Then I was talking to another fellow mammy who lives down the street and she told me that Everyone Active Centres do adult and baby swimming lessons for a fraction of the price. Who knew? There’s about 4 Everyone Active Centres within half an hour drive so I quickly phoned them all and managed to get us a space on a Saturday morning at 9am. The lessons are good. Really good in fact but I think you need a bit of confidence being in the water with your baby first which is why I would recommend one chapter of the mega expensive lessons. I’m a confident swimmer but having your baby in the water with you is just a totally new experience. But these are great to move on to. Arthur loves them and we still sing songs and play silly games. It works out at just over £4 per lesson and you pay monthly in advance. You get a free bag and towel when you sign up too! The changing situation is exactly the same but Arthur’s used to it now and lies patiently, wrapped up in a towel on the wet floor while I get ready.

Anyone thinking of taking their baby swimming then go ASAP! The younger they start the less likely they will be to kick off and it’s so worth it!

Slimming World


Slimming World progress certificates, recipe book, plan book and magazine.

Happy Friday everyone! I hope you all have a lovely weekend planned.

I just wanted to write a quick blog about Slimming World. After having Arthur last November I struggled to loose my baby weight. Then my mam died in March and I put on even more weight and found myself heavier than I have ever been. 14stone 6lbs.

I decided to do a cleanse and I lost 8lbs in 9 days but I obviously wanted to loose a lot more than that so on 22nd June I went along to my local Slimming World group.

I was greeted with the warmest welcome anyone could wish for. I wasn’t nervous about going but I can understand a lot of people are and they are made to feel instantly at ease the second they walk through the door. I sat through the new member talk, paid my £9.95 membership (each week after is £4.95) and went off to get weighed. Everyone is weighed at the beginning of each group and nobody else gets to know your weight so it’s very confidential.

The plan takes a little getting your head around but I have to say I LOVE IT! You can eat absolutely all sorts of things including carbs and let’s face it, carbs are our friend. In the first 3 weeks I lost 8.5lbs. WOW!

Now, since I have started I have had quite a few naughty weeks. I’ve had a hen night, a wedding, a two week holiday, a baby shower (involving more cake) my sisters birthday (I made a massive cake) and my birthday. But to date I have lost 1.5 stone which I think is pretty incredible as I don’t feel like I am actually dieting.

My top tips:

  1. Plan your meals before you do the weekly food shop. Write a shopping list based on your meal plan and stick to it. Not only do you have no naughty temptations at home but you also save money. I bought the ‘Free Food Feasts’ book from my group and a lot of my meals come from that. A favourite is the Mighty Meatzza which is a pizza with a meat base instead of bread. It tastes so naughty but it’s what us Slimming Worlders call a SPEED meal.
  2. Take a friend. I’m sure we all have a friend who wants to loose a bit of weight. Taking a friend keeps you motivated.
  3. Stay to group. Don’t just get weighed and go home. Staying to the group really helps as you pick up lots of hints and tips and boosts your self confidence. You also meet lots of lovely people. It’s also my hour a week where I am me, not mam. My group is 7.30pm so I put Arthur to bed and my dad babysits.
  4. If you have a bad week still go and get weighed. We are all going to have weeks where we gain a little weight but by still going to the group you will get the motivation you need for the week ahead. Miss it and it’s more likely you’ll gain again the following week.
  5. Use your consultant. They are there to help and no question is stupid. You will have contact information so if you need help during the week pick up the phone or send a message. We also have a private Facebook group where lots of members post meal ideas.

Anyone thinking of joining Slimming World I would just say GO FOR IT! What have you got to loose apart from all of those lbs!!!

If you want to find some inspiration of healthy meal ideas then check out my Facebook page ‘MamaB.’ I will be posting a lot of SW meals on there over the next few weeks!

Speak to you all soon!


Sophie x