Sunday, January 23, 2011

My solution to a common problem

Sleep deprived? Co-sleeping with your little one might be the answer to a good nights’ rest
In the past week, all previous ideas that I held about the best way to get a baby to sleep were thrown out the window.
When my second child was born I slept in the same room as her, but not in the same bed (although this was encouraged by my midwife while I was still in hospital).
I felt it was easier for everyone in the family if I could get to her quickly when she waked for a feed, and not disturb anyone else.
After a month or so, I gradually retreated back to my own bed, leaving the baby in her own room.
But seven months have now passed and she is still not sleeping through the night.
I can’t complain too much because she does sleep well, but she still wakes at 2am for a feed and sometimes also at midnight.
My first child would wake up at 2am and then stay awake for hours, so I know what it’s like to have a child who doesn’t sleep.
I’m incredibly reluctant to try and enforce a strict routine on her to make her sleep through because right now she is so happy and content, that I’m worried I might stuff up the wonderful bond that we have.
Nearly all babies wake at least once a night so I think it is unreasonable to expect a baby to sleep 12 hours straight.
The trouble is that because she is still crying at 2am, everyone in the house wakes up, which makes for a cranky husband and cranky big sister.
So we have started co-sleeping and I haven’t slept this well for ages.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Mums plugging in

It’s a wonderful tool to seek answers, community and escape, but are mothers becoming addicted to the internet? 
I recently entered a little contest on Facebook aimed at mothers, and all you had to do was name one of your new year resolutions.
To my surprise dozens of women said that their resolution would be to spend less time on the computer.
This got me wondering just how many mums are sleepless because they’re spending their nights online, or ignoring the cries of their kids, just to write a comment on a friend’s status, or to check if they’ve got any emails (because they only checked an hour ago, and might have new mail).
And I don’t think I’m exaggerating when I type this because I’ve occasionally found myself surfing the net in the evening, or playing a game of solitaire, only to look up and realise it’s 1.30am.
You only have to join up on one of the many parenting forums to see just how many mothers are seeking connections via the web.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

WIN a Yoga DVD and Yoga Mat!

Many women suffer from low iron levels, but popping a pill is not always the easiest solution.
Over-the-counter tablets often contain a form of iron called ferrous sulphate which is renowned for causing side effects such as bloating, cramping and constipation.
Clements Iron is different as it contains a special type of iron called Ferrochel, which is chelated. This means the iron molecules are attached to amino acids which help absorption and reduce irritation to the digestive system.
Clements Iron also contains a broad spectrum of helpful vitamins and minerals to keep you feeling vibrant, energetic and healthy.
Clements Iron can be found in pharmacies or for more info, visit
To help you get fit in 2011, weekender has four Clements Iron Fitness packs to giveaway.
Each prize is valued at $70 and includes a red yoga mat, yoga exercise DVD and a brochure on Clements Iron.
Entries close 9am, Friday, January 7.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Get fit in 2011

Finding it hard to find time to exercise? Here’s some ideas that might help you keep in shape
This time last year I wrote a column about some easy New Year resolutions that every parent should adopt, such as spending more time with the kids.
For many parents the kids may not be as high on the list as, for example, “losing weight and getting fit” or “quit smoking”.
And let’s face it, we all love to indulge a little over the festive season.
Resolutions to improve our health are beneficial to the whole family if you stick to them and reach your goals.
So before you go joining the nearest gym, here’s some ideas on how to squeeze in some exercise while staying at home to take care of the children.
1. Wear your gym clothes all day. Finding time to exercise, even if it is 15 minutes on the treadmill, or a 30-minute yoga DVD, while the kids take their naps can be tough. 
Putting on your gym gear first thing in the morning will firstly get you in the mood to exercise and motivate you to work harder (even if you are just doing chores around the house), it makes exercise easier because you’re always ready when the time allows, and it reminds you of your goal to exercise.
2. Exercise with your children. Aside from playing Wii tennis with my baby on one hip (and winning I might add!) it is possible to have a lot of fun exercising with your kids.
Include them in your workout by getting them to count your reps or give them their own pair of toy dumbbells (a couple of toilet rolls will do). 
Pram pushing is free and easy, and if you have older kids, join them for a bike ride.
Consider playing a sport once a week such as squash, tennis, golf, netball or basketball.
3. Make every movement count. Pushing the vacuum from one end of the house to the other will count towards losing those love handles, but there’s other activities you can do such as running up stairs instead of walking, add more walking to your day (park the car further away from the supermarket), do lunges every time you pick up toys from the floor, do push ups with the kids on your back, or do tummy crunches with baby on your knees.
4. Time management is crucial. Don’t think that 10 minutes workout sessions won’t make a difference, because they will if you do them enough.
Even if you have a hectic schedule, be ready to take advantage of a few minutes here and there. 
Ten minutes is all you need to do a cardio workout, some yoga stretches, or strength training. 
Try doing some pushups, squats and lunches, and then a quick run on a treadmill or staircase.
The main thing to remember is to stay active.
5. Consider a personal trainer. If it’s within your budget, consider working with a trainer once a week at your home.
It’s a great way to stay on track, and the trainer can work around your schedule. You don’t have to drive anywhere for an appointment, and you’ll get customized workouts that help you reach your personal goals. 
Plus, having a personal trainer keeps you motivated.
If money is tight, consider doing partner training with a friend.
6. Involve your friends and family. If you have a spouse or family support, you may be able to get some time away from taking care of the children to fit in some exercise time.