So what do you buy a new mum for Christmas? Or mum to be? As I work with a team of mums with a mission to delight them at every given opportunity, I believe that all present buying for such special people should be thoughtfully considered.
When I imagined maternity leave, I thought I'd be hopping all over London to visit the museums, galleries, and restaurants that I'd always wanted to go to but never had the time whilst working full-time. The reality is a bit different.
I want to share something I have written recently but have sat on, busy with life, busy with the children, busy trying to make time with my husband, and busy trying to set aside time for myself which is free from writing, reading, studying or worrying.
I'm just going to come out and say it. I did the '36 book exchange' thing on Facebook. I know it's bad. I know I should be ashamed of myself. I know I am basically a moron and I have done The Worst Thing Ever.
Standing in front of the mirror, I contemplated now being a mother of two under two. Pretty much everything had changed: my life, my outlook, my role and my body. Not only that, I no longer knew what to wear anymore. Even that was out of my control.
If you've been there you'll know that life with a newborn can be damn hard work. If not, I'm about to save you from seeing your friend turn into satan in a fluffy dressing gown.
There are two main eating disorders that affect young people. These are anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa. Although they're both very different, they do have one thing in common, namely that a young person suffering from either condition has an unnatural attitude to food.
Dear Mummy. Well you didn't think I was going to let my baby brother have all the glory now did you? I mean he's a baby so his reasons for not sleeping are, well, baby-ish. Mine though? Mine are a little different, because you see Mummy, I am a big boy now.
The reality is that the government will become our sector's biggest customer in 2017 when full roll-out of childcare reform is here. But it has to pay us fairly if it wants us to deliver high quality care and education sustainably. The funding has to be sufficient.
I remember one Christmas I didn't buy gifts for my cousins' kids. And then they turned up one evening in December with gifts for all three of my children. Cue awkward shuffles and surprised expressions followed 365 days of guilt until I could repay the gesture the following year.
Peeling down to your sexy underwear on a naughty weekend break before drunkenly deciding 'Let's make a baby!' is exciting. It was being exciting that got you into this mess. Being boring might be tedious but it rarely ends in childbirth.
Now as a mother of two, I can appreciate how utterly under-prepared I was as I began this crazy journey. I certainly don't claim to have all the answers (not even close) but I'd like to offer a helping hand, for what it is worth, to anyone else waddling uncomfortably down the path to motherhood.
If you are in my situation, with multiple children (all young and needy) and no family help or excess cash to pay for it, then you might feel the same as I do when told that you can 'have it all'. The career, the family, the success, the glory.
Traditionally, it has been the mother who has given up a career to look after a child. But times are changing. As a consequence of more and more women having babies later in their lives, women are spending more time forging established careers, just like men have always done. At least that's what I'm experiencing in my neck of the woods.
Why, despite experience and common sense and despite what women themselves say, is there this absolute continued blind faith among so many people that a significant number of women revel in the excuse of breastfeeding to expose themselves in public?
High cortisol levels can create a partial shutdown of our immune system, making us more vulnerable to threats of illness, it can cause intense hunger and insane cravings, and it can add stubborn fat to our abdomen.