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Baby Buzz

TRAVEL GETAWAYS IVF PARENTS IN BUSINESS MR Ma

COMPETITION TIME
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when it comes to

babies...

We all know how babies can be! Even if you follow a regular routine, no two days are ever the same, and there are times when your baby may be more prone to nappy rash
Wean ing
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unpredictable
Teeth in

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First sleep through the night

Mov in brea g from form st to ula milk

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we we babies bums babies bums

THE BABY BUZZ MUMS FOCUS GROUP

Sabrina

Mary

Emily

Welcome
Naddy Danielle Eve
I cant believe how fast January has passed us by and how half term is almost upon us. What do you have planned with your children this half term? Are you considering a break abroad or away? Check out our travel destinations each month for new and exciting places to go to. In this issue, our main topic is about IVF and the taboo that surrounds it. With the first test tube baby Louise having been born back in 1978 you would think that the stigma attached to having IVF treatment would no longer exist, but having spoken to two mums who have lovingly shared their story with us, it is still very much an issue many parents face today. We also look at the legalities involved with IVF which many parents wouldnt necessarily know about. As usual, we have a fantastic new selection of Parents in Business, showing just how to achieve success. Dont forget, if you know someone who should appear in our Parents In Business feature, just send us an email with their details! Remember that the Baby Show is on this month at the Excel Centre, London from 22 24 February, so come down for a day trip out and see who will be exhibiting and the new products they have on offer. Over the next few months, Baby Buzz Magazine will be expanding into Hertfordshire and Essex, so if you know someone who would like to receive a copy or would like to feature within the forthcoming issues, send an email to us at info@babybuzzmagazine.com and well make sure they are added to our subscription database. Let me finish by wishing you all a Happy Valentines Day. See you next month !!

Nickie
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Baby Buzz Magazine Limited Unit 136 North London Business Park Oakleigh Road South New Southgate London N11 1NP Company No: 8234631 Editor Nickie Evans nickie@babybuzzmagazine.com 0208 361 0727 07535 541 303 Assistant Editor Cindy Evans Customer Services Jenny Blythe Website & Design Emily Hewett, I am Emily contact@iamemily.co.uk Baby Buzz Magazine will be published once a month Warner Midland Limited
Disclaimer: The views expressed in this magazine are not always those of the publishers. Neither the publisher nor any other person associated with the production and publication of this magazine makes any guarantee, warranties or claims as to the accuracy of any of the contents of this magazine. We include and use products and services that we believe to be of a reputable standard but we advise readers to make their own judgements. The publishers and magazine will not be held accountable and or responsible for any loss caused by errors, loss or negligence resulting from Baby Buzz Magazine Limited. We do not accept responsibility for any unsolicited material or photographs published. Terms and Conditions for our competitions can be found on our website at the time of being published. No section of this magazine is authorised for use or reproduction in any form without the prior consent of the editor.

Contents
08 14 15 30 39 44 12 24 27 32 36 38 43 Parents in Business - Inspirational stories Pure Hair & Beauty - Pampering yourself when pregnant IVF - The Legalities and True Life Stories Education - The benefits of learning another language Mr Ma - Trials and Tribulations The Arts - Family fun in February, where to go and what to do Allergy UK - The truth about allergies in pregnancy Bumps & Boobs - The importance of getting fitted properly Acupuncture and IVF - Does it really help? Money Savvy - Use retail discounts to get ahead Exercise tips for your bump and beyond The mummy-to-be - Trimester One The Musical Buzz

22 WOWMUM - The new app for parents 25 Bravado Design - Lingerie Review 28 Baby Products - Tried and Tested 41 Natures Purest - Naturally coloured cotton products 31 Luxury and Little Ones - Visiting Tenerife 47 Businesses for all your needs 34 Organix - Yummy delights to tempt your children 35 Baking at home with your toddler Brother Max Scoop High Chair Coco Go Lounger Chair Koo-Di Pop Up Travel Cot and Matching Snugsuit Gift Hamper from All Things Brighton Beautiful 4

new beginnings

Ava Shipley Born: 9th January 2013 8lb 13oz

Daisy Louise Gavin Born: 23rd December 2012 8lb 6oz

Emir Jesuf Kristian Mohammadi Born: 7th January 2013 7lb 5oz Congratulations to parents Julia & Hossein

Congratulations to parents Claire & Rick

Congratulations to parents Gemma & Fonzie

Competitions

Send all entries to: info@babybuzzmagazine.com and remember to include your name, address and telephone number.

my thoughts

My Thoughts Dumplings Photography


As Mums we watch our bumps grow and dream about the perfect little life we are creating inside us and then we finally meet little miss or mister and he or she totally manages to surpass all of our expectations of beauty and love. Of course every parent out there knows its not all foot massages, heartmelting sonograms and sweet baby smells with bumps and babies, it can also be a very anxious and trying time for even the yummiest of mummies. More and more parents are wanting to capture the moment they were expecting their little one to relish in a time when life as it was about to become was unexpected and unknown. It is Liyas style of understanding her youngest clients that makes her style of photography unique. More often than not the best shots are taken whilst just hanging out with the littlest clients and just waiting for that special moment to present itself. If you see some of the samples of her work, the moments that have been captured are truly serene and breathtaking. Liya Zlotnik has been living in the world of photography for as We all know our children grow up so fast! In the blink of an eye, long as she can remember. What started as simple curiosity in really. And even though it may feel like you dont have a school evolved, after the birth of her first child, into a lifestyle. moment to blink anymore, you still see them blossom and change every dayAnd while its impossible to hold on to every This love affair (or obsession depending on who you ask) grows precious moment, its worth giving Liya a call and seeing how stronger every year with every bump, baby, big brother / sister Dumplings can beautifully capture a few little milestones to and proud mummy and daddy she photographs. She has the make your heart skip a beat including and extending beyond the unique ability of capturing the genuine emotion and vivacity moment you are sending them off to University that comes so naturally to kids. My style is more about candid portraiture, a choice that was less deliberate and more to do Liya lives in West Hampstead with its beautiful surroundings with the challenges of photographing active and uncooperative and parks and has two delicious little dumplings of her own. toddlers. Their refusal to pose is the result of the very same innate characteristic that make young children the most For more information or to book a bespoke session, captivating subjects to photograph - their genuine nature.
please contact Liya on:

It is very true what people say about pregnancy & parenthood in that they are incredibly powerful and empowering experiences.

liya@dumplingsphotography.com 07739 990 809 www.dumplingsphotography.com

Packages start From 70

Dumplings Photography
For more information or to book a bespoke session, please contact me on:
liya@dumplingsphotography.com Tel: 07739 990 809 www.dumplingsphotography.com 7

parents in business

Nilupha, mum of two boys. Having a degree in Architecture has meant I have a design background. However, when it comes to Retail, Web design, IT, Finance, Marketing and PR these were totally new skills, so the journey of setting up TumsToTots has personally been a lengthy and steep learning curve. It might sound like a clich, but my business literally started at the kitchen table. I was browsing the internet on my computer looking for nursing bras while feeding my son. I had bought some from Emma-Jane Maternity, which I thought were just fantastic for their price and quality, and the idea came to me that there are other mums out there who find it a challenge to get to the shop with a baby in tow. Maybe I could set up an online shop selling maternity products... I ordered my first box of bras and have never looked back.

Who is behind TumsToTots?

Are you in need of some inspiration or encouragement, is starting your own business the right thing to do? Read what these six businesses did and why it worked for them

How did the company get started?

What is the company about?

TumsToTots.com is an online shop which sells quality and award winning maternity items for mums with bumps through to clothes, toys, nursery and travel accessories for little ones themselves. Initially I sold breastfeeding bras but over the years, as my children have grown, the products stocked have become more diverse to cater for the little ones themselves. I like to say TumsToTots.com is a family business as I could not manage the shop without the never-ending support of my husband (who has to put up with the relentless tap tapping on the computer through his favourite films). My family comes first and foremost and therefore I am not looking to expand the shop to global levels...it needs to remain manageable to fit in around family life. Im always on the lookout for new and exciting products if you appear on Dragons Den then Im more than likely to be in contact!!!

What do you hope to achieve?

What has been the highlight of starting your own company?

The highlight has to be the massive sense of achievement you get from all your hard work. When you get positive feedback on how a child loves their toy, or on the service a customer has received, its extremely rewarding. When a customer has bought a maternity swimsuit and then returns months later to buy her nursing bras, I know its a job well done. I love being my own boss and not having to answer to anyone. Moreover when having a family, the flexibility of running your own business is priceless... school runs, school activities, those never ending sick days (mums and dads will totally understand where Im coming from) and school holidays are never an issue. If there was one thing I miss whilst currently working on my own, its the chat and banter that I used to have at work. It would be great to have someone to run ideas past; and at times, such as the run up to Christmas, a helping pair of hands to help with the volume of work.

What has been the downside of starting your own company?

My advice to anyone wanting to start up their own business is that you really have to believe in what you are doing and enjoy it. It is true to say that the more you put in the more you get out... so be prepared for long hours. Feedback is invaluable, take it on board (the good and bad), and use it constructively as a stepping stone to move forwards. 8

What would your advice be to any parent wanting to start up their own business?

Who is behind the Product?

Jonathan Gold would describe himself as dad of two first and foremost but is first to admit he wouldnt be where he is today without being an entrepreneur, inventor, product designer and businessmen.

Walking in to Boots in 2008 and seeing our first 4 products on their shelves. Closely followed by recently seeing our 50th product in Mothercare!

What has been the highlight of starting your own company?

How did the company get started?

What has been the downside of starting your own company?


Every time I get together with friends they make a point of asking me who I am when I walk in. Bringing children and baby products in to this world hasnt left much time for anything else.

With an array of inventions under his belt, it wasnt until he became a father that he dedicated his efforts to baby products. It was then that Jonathans world changed overnight and he soon realised how much of a juggling act being a parent can be.

Brother Max is not only a company inspired by Jonathans family (and named after his two sons, Max 9yrs and Sam, 6yrs), but is a company made up of parents, ultimately designing innovative products to help get things done more easily so that babies, toddlers and their parents spend more time doing the fun stuff!

What is the company about?

What would your advice be to any parent wanting to start up their own business?
Only do so if you truly believe that your product (or service) is better than your closest competitor. And once youre up and running, apply the 80:20 principal, whereby you do 80% of the task in 20% of the time, and dont say why, say why not.

Brother Max has numerous products in development, all focusing on its four key product categories (feeding, highchairs, bathtime and health and safety). Jonathan certainly doesnt like to sit still and he hopes Brother Max will be around for the next generation of Golds!

What do you hope to achieve?

Founded in July 2008 by Lizbeth Holstein & Sebastian Galbraith-Helps to enable you to be an individual with your bespoke premium quality stationery.

Who is behind HoneyTreeBespoke.com

How did the company get started?

Lizbeth found, after being hosted by friends and family, finding something appropriate to convey her thanks became a rather limited procedure. Ones stationery choices seemed to be restricted to plain correspondence cards or would feature some "clip art" or computer generated shape.

Inevitably Lizbeth would illustrate something on a blank card, enjoy thinking of what was most appropriate then get frustrated by the shape and quality of the provided envelope. Recipients would then ask her to design something "similar" for them, but she soon found that they had more creative fire than they knew, and would come up with brilliant concepts that she would never have suggested. The upshot was that Lizbeth started to put a portfolio of illustrations together with little regard for "what was most appropriate" as this would actually stint the real joy of personalisation that she had picked up on.

What is the company about?


Freedom of choice to create! Finally in September 2009 the concept of allowing all illustrations to be chosen on any type of stationery was made possible through our web designer, enabling our community to "personalise" as they wanted. We have retained the "recommended Illustrations" so as to not overwhelm the shopper, yet half the fun for us each day, as our studio team personally print all orders to retain 100% control, is to see what artwork is chosen for which of the 40 stationery products we provide. To become THE personalised stationery, prints and invitation online boutique of choice for the discerning, creative shopper - to provide an ideal platform for busy mums to enjoy creating stunning birth announcements, children party invitations and social stationery that ensures their correspondence stands out.

What do you hope to achieve?

What has been the highlight of starting your own company?

Funnily enough being able to spend time with my son and daughter! Initially it was so busy and my husband (Sebastian) and I did everything from the dining room of our rented home, but our goal was to create a great brand that attracted wonderful people to work with us. Now in year 4 we have reached this stage and as our children are quite grown up it is even more special to be able to structure my time around events and occasions that are important to us. It is also seeing the amazing progress from the people we have employed who are all local and young, yet brilliant and inspiring.

There are none I can think of, naturally we would love to know how many orders we will get every day so we can expand in confidence but we knew this wouldn't be the case for a few years so we can't become too stressed about this, as Sebastian says; look after every order and we will be fine.

What has been the downside of starting your own company?

My advice to anyone thinking of starting up a business is thatit's like renovating a property: you have to have a clear vision of the business in a year's time plus double the expense budget that you initially anticipated. This helps as it will make you think on a bigger scale and never compromise on your offering.

What would your advice be to any parent wanting to start up their own business?

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Who is behind the Products? I am, Amelia. A work at home Mother of 2 darling daughters. I am passionate about caring for babies and small children and almost as passionate about looking after the environment in practical, modern ways that fit in with busy modern lifestyles. How did the company get started? When my youngest, Hannah was a new born we discovered she had eczema, the chemicals in disposable nappies were very harsh on her skin and the alternatives at the time were time consuming, fiddly and bulky, not to mention they looked terrible! What's more they were so complicated my husband refused to have anything to do with them. So I set about to design a nappy that even he could change! Soon after, friends and family wanted some and the demand out weighed anything I had time to make so we looked into manufacturing and that is how Bambooty was born. What is the company about? Bambooty is about making it easy for Mums or carers in general, to give cloth nappies a go! Products are designed and tested with functionality, ease of use, eco friendly-ness and hip designs at the forefront of our minds. We are about saving the environment, saving money, saving our babies from chemicals and looking great whilst doing it! What do you hope to achieve? Helping Mums, Dads and carers to save their baby's skin from harsh chemicals. Saving the environment from thousands of tonnes of plastic waste, which takes hundreds of years to biodegrade. Last but not least, save families money to spend on more important things than rubbish, such as holidays! What has been the highlight of starting your own company? There are 2 main regular highlights, 1. The smile I get from hearing from thrilled customers who are loving having made the switch from disposables to Bambooty, often regretting they didn't do it earlier! 2. Being able to provide for but also be there for my girls while they are growing up, even if I am trying to answer emails at the same time as cooking dinner, its all a juggling act. What has been the downside of starting your own company? Downsides are the stress levels, the enormous amount of time and money it takes, which cuts into family needs of course. What would your advice be to any parent wanting to start up their own business? Go for it! But do your research, plan, research some more and learn from mistakes, everyone makes them.

Creator: Amelia Singh

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Who is behind Sue Kennedy Photography? Me! Sue, married to Jason, mother to Alice (4 years old). How did the company get started? About 10 years ago I hit a career crossroads and exited the company I was working for on a voluntary redundancy package and started the business. I was an extremely serious amateur photographer at that point and had been for many years. So it was the classic scenario of turning a hobby into a business, except I always knew I wanted to earn a living doing something I was passionate about and my mothers death triggered that ambition big time, but it took time to build the confidence to jump. I had already qualified as a photographer before I jumped! And I still invest in regular training today for technical and creative skills. Some of the software I need to use is amazing, but the devil is in the detail and its takes a good deal of time to get to know it well and then stay on top of it. Things changes quite fast :-) What is the company about? Portrait photography I offer studio photography for babies capturing their first year at key stages and then outdoor portraits for families (sometimes its just the kids!). Im just about to launch a dog portrait promotion in the next few weeks. My style is very natural and informal, and as I photograph a lot of pre school age children I love working outside its an excellent distraction, and makes for a fun experience for children and lot less stress for the parents, as they forget they are being photographed. It can also be very challenging the mix of weather (And therefore light), the location and childrens personalities all yield different issues, so I have to think fast to create something special for parents. My first love in photography is landscape photography and I would chase the light to capture beautiful photographs of the landscape using just natural light. So it was a natural step to photograph people in a natural setting. Natural light is just so beautiful anyway it has a softness that flash cannot get close to. What do you hope to achieve? Great photography that parents want to buy is the simple answer. My daughter loves looking at photographs of her younger years and I find most children do its part of their family history and helps to preserve the memories. What has been the highlight of starting your own company? Achieving good work life balance, and the freedom to plan my own day. Every day is different, and that is they way I like it. Sometimes I forget which hat I have on, but hey ho! What has been the downside of starting your own company? It can be lonely and I miss colleagues to banter with sometimes, but I know plenty of people in business and meet up with them regularly just to re-balance that aspect. What would your advice be to any parent wanting to start up their own business? You have got to have reliable childcare, and it has to be flexible. I was really lucky with my childminder we agreed core hours, and I often topped it up with other days all pre-arranged of course, when I was really busy or had a training course to attend. I even had a second childminder to step in when the other was on holiday or was full on a day I needed her. Its essential to go to work knowing your child is safe and happy.

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Who is behind Piccolo Bambino? Hi, Im Emily Surash and Im the face behind Piccolo Bambino. How did the company get started? I established Piccolo Bambino in November 2011. Im a mum of 2 small children and used to work as a nurse until I had my second child. I found that the working pattern of this job was not conducive in looking after them and enjoying family time, so I decided to act on my love for all things baby! I had spent many years looking at different products on the market for babies and toddlers and always thought it would be a great idea to bring all the different things Id seen and loved together into one web shop. I love things that are a little different, retro twist or have a vintage feel. I wanted the products on Piccolo Bambino to be that little bit different from what the leading retailers sell. I also knew that I wanted to support UK designers and other small companies (Handmade in Britain). After a lot of hard work and enjoyable market research, Piccolo Bambino was born! What is the company about? Piccolo Bambino is an online boutique selling unique, contemporary gifts, toys, nursery items & clothing. Over the last 12 months we have grown with regards to the number of different products we stock and have very much tried to source UK designers and products made in the UK. What do you hope to achieve? Im looking forward to nurturing Piccolo Bambino over the next few years, increasing my product line and reaching people not only in the UK, but hopefully into other countries as well. I am however very passionate about maintaining the very personal touch that even I, as a customer, always appreciate in others. I do believe that Piccolo Bambino will continue to deliver a very personable service, and ensure that our little ones enjoy beautiful gifts and toys that can be treasured always. I also have many ideas about setting up my own Piccolo Bambino brand. What has been the highlight of starting your own company? Ive loved every minute off setting up Piccolo Bambino. I get to research gorgeous products for little ones and help support other small business by stocking their products. I get really excited when companies contact me asking if I will stock their products. It shows to me that the hard work is paying off if people love the site and products so much they want to be involved. I guess the biggest positive is that I can work from home. This means that I dont need to pay for childcare, I can work around my young children, do the nursery runs, go to nursery concerts and do activities at home with them. What has been the downside of starting your own company? Its been very hard work and time consuming, which I guess I didnt realise until I started. Getting the website up and running and full of products was probably the most stressful and time consuming part of it. Also having limited funds doesnt allow for a huge marketing budget, so using social media networking is also very time consuming. What would your advice be to any parent wanting to start up their own business? Go for it. One thing to really remember when you are working from home and looking after children is having you/family time. Getting the work/life balance is really important and much harder to do when you work from home. Ive also had huge support from my husband who is always willing to help whenever and wherever he can. I think its important to have someone you can ask for another opinion and can support you when ever you need it.

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health & beauty

Pampering when pregnant - treat yourself!


By Tas, Creative Director of Pure Hair & Beauty,Enfield. So hows your hair been feeling during your pregnancy? to mad as its not only your bump thatll be growing your checks could be filling out as well ! Noticed any changes? Hair feels thicker, fuller perhaps? Most of you ladies would probably have noticed this. This In next months column we have a competition for all you baby happens in early pregnancy and is essentially due to estrogen buzz readers and Ill also be giving some hair style and colour and progesterone hormone levels increasing. This causes the advice for expectant mothers. normal cycle of hair growth to slow down, resulting in only about five percent of usual hair to fall out and replacement to For more information, please contact: occur. But this isnt the same for every expectant mother, and 020 8363 2236 can also be different with every pregnancy. Some women find info@pureenfield.co.uk their hair becomes dry and brittle, and can also experience breakage through the hair there are a few things you can do to help. Try not to over wash your hair, as frequent washing can tend to strip the hair of its natural moisture, if you wash your hair every day, change to every other day and maybe even 3 times a week. Get yourself a good deep conditioning treatment. There are many on the market, and from experience some expectant mothers prefer to use naturally derived and organic products as opposed to more perfumed and pvp rich products. Shampoo your hair as you would normally and cover the hair in the treatment, comb it through the hair making sure its drenching every strand, then clip your hair up and wrap it in a towel. You could also add a plastic shower cap or bag before you wrap the towel round, this will help keep the treatment penetrate deeper into the hair, ok hard part done! Now carry on with what you need to do or sit and relax, best to leave in the hair as long as possible if you can leave it over night then thats even better. I would recommend doing this once a week or depending how dry your hair is, you can have this done in a salon. Most salons will offer this service. I would best recommend a steam treatment as this helps the conditioner penetrate deeper in to the hair shaft. If you are experiencing hair breakage then regular trims can help. Taking the length up a bit more than usual can also help prevent breakage to the brittle ends. Maybe ask your stylist to add a few layers this can help the appearance of the hair and make the breakage look less noticeable, BUT remember dont go

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The Legalities

IVF - your stories, the legalities and the facts

For further information or advice contact Chapman Pieri Solicitors at www.cpfamilylaw.co.uk Telephone: 020 8882 9850 E-mail: info@cpfamilylaw.co.uk.

By Karen Chapman, Chapman Pieri Solicitors

Fertility Treatment and the Law


In the first in a series of three articles on Fertility Treatment, Donor Conception and Surrogacy, Karen Chapman of Chapman Pieri Solicitors offers a legal perspective on fertility treatment in the UK. Fertility treatment in the UK is carefully regulated. The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) oversees all fertility treatment in the UK. Fertility clinics providing treatment must have a license from the HFEA. The HFEA maintains a record of all fertility treatments carried out in the UK. If you are having fertility treatment in a licensed clinic, the register will record details about you, your treatment, any donor used in the treatment and details of any child born if your treatment is successful. The register is particularly important for families of donor conceived children because they have the legal right to access information about their genetic heritage later in life. Information on the register is protected by strict confidentiality laws. Fertility clinics have a duty to consider the welfare of any child who may be born as a result of fertility treatment, including the need of that child for supportive parenting. The guidance given to clinics is that treatment should be offered unless there is real evidence of potential risk to a prospective child. There is no longer any suggestion in the law that single or lesbian women need to satisfy a higher standard of suitability than heterosexual couples.

Patients and donors must be offered proper information and counselling before fertility treatment is provided. Gametes and embryos can be stored for a basic period of 10 years. When this period expires they must be allowed to perish unless they qualify for extended storage. Generally speaking this applies where you or the person you are donating to is prematurely infertile. Extended storage applies in renewable ten-year periods (up to an overall maximum of 55 years' storage). To qualify, both providers must consent to storage beyond ten years and a doctors certification is required. Difficulties can arise where couples with embryos or donated gametes in storage separate and disagree about how they should be used. The egg or sperm provider can withdraw consent to their embryos being stored or used at any time. If one party objects to the destruction of the embryo, the embryo may only be stored for a 12 month period, although it cannot be used in treatment during this time but if he or she does not change his mind during this period the embryo must be destroyed at the end of the year. If a child is conceived with donor sperm or eggs and surplus stored so that future children are full genetic siblings, disputes can arise about who the sperm/eggs belong to. A person with no genetic stake in stored donor gametes or embryos cannot stop his or her partner from using them in treatment for example to have a child in a new relationship, although it may be possible to make an application to the family court for a prohibited steps order.

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IVF - your stories, the legalities and the facts Last year it was stated that over 35,000 women underwent some form of fertility treatment. This figure goes to show just how many people infertility affects. Unless you are directly affected or are close to someone who is directly affected with an infertility issue, it is unlikely that you will appreciate the dilemmas that some families go through in order to have a family of their own. Another big misconception is that infertility only affects men and women over the age of 35 which, as research has shown, is very much not the case.

It was through Baby Green House that we came across the Lister Hospital in Chelsea they only treat you privately! I said to my husband that we should go and have a consultation there. We had the consultation and the doctor there was lovely. He looked at all of our results and agreed that IVF with ICSI was the only option and the best option because hubbys sperm quality, motility and number were low. We were told what would happen in great detail, given an information pack and we then left the clinic. Hubby and I both knew that we would have our treatment there because it felt so right being there but what about the cost we were looking at nearly 10,000 for one fresh cycle of IVF with ICSI! Yikes! Anyway, we said wed work out the financial aspect eventually (thank god for 0% purchasing credit cards) and started the treatment in October 2007 when I had my next period. It was the long protocol cycle where I was to be put on the pill so the hospital could have full control of my body once the drugs were being pumped into me. I had read up on all the drugs and what the side effects could be and scared myself silly. My one piece of advice is dont read up on EVERYTHING or if you do, just use it for In 2004 I had the pleasure of meeting a great lady who is now a good information purposes only. friend of mine, Sarah Holland, through a holistic therapists web forum called Healthy Pages (I am a complementary therapist). Little did I know Sarah was going through fertility issues herself and she directed me to an online forum for people having infertility issues called Baby Green House (unfortunately this is no longer around). It was through there I was told to try acupuncture. We told them our story and they were happy to help. They also referred us to the nutritionist who worked at the clinic who told us to start cutting out various foods such as cows milk, white foods (bread, pasta, rice), sugar, to eat as organically as possible, drink Volvic mineral water, stop all teas and coffees, etc. This didnt help us conceive naturally but it did make our bodies stronger and healthier. In the mean time, a close family member fell pregnant and it was extremely hard to accept. All I could see around me were pregnant people and all I kept thinking was why not us? We also got added pressure from family too to start having

Hubby and I met when we were both at university. I was only 19 and he was 21. For him it was love at first sight and for me it took some time but once I got to know him and fell in love, I knew he was the one I wanted to marry and have my kids with. In 2000, after three years of courting, we got married. We knew we wanted kids one day but not just yet. In 2005, five years of being married, we thought it was time we decided to have a family. I was 27 and hubby was turning 30 so it was a good time. After a year of trying naturally, we still hadnt conceived and so we went to the doctors to have all of our tests done. I went through a whole load of tests and felt a bit violated whilst hubby only had to do the one sperm test. All my tests started coming back clear and only then hubby was tested why couldnt he have been tested first and then I wouldnt have had to go through my tests? We were healthy people, so why us? We had a consultation with the NHS fertility specialist who told us that he would write to Kings College to let them know we needed IVF with ICSI and that we just needed to wait to hear from them. This was August 2006. Our letter from Kings College came through they had a waiting list of 3 years and we would not be seen for our treatment until January 2010!

kids as we had been married 7 years by then but no one knew we were having fertility issues. Our letter from Kings came inviting us to an open evening at the hospital to meet the doctors, see the hospital and decide what we wanted to do. I remember the words clearly from the doctor We have an NHS waiting list of three years but if you want to go privately you can start tomorrow! To me that felt like they were only after money and to be honest their success rates were not that great either. I didnt and couldnt wait another three years before we had the baby we so wanted.

We had twins!

16

IVF - your stories, the legalities and the facts


Before the IVF started, I have always had a fear of needles due to a bad episode of a meningitis vaccination I had to have when I was 13. I always faint when having vaccinations and had never had a blood test in my life. So you can imagine how I was feeling during the IVF when I had to have regular blood tests hubby had to come with me at my first ever blood test and hold my hand. How the hell was I going to inject myself to help stimulate my ovaries to produce lots of little eggs? Luckily hubby was okay about it and did the injections for me. Luckily for me, I had managed to keep really busy during the IVF treatment time. Id remembered to take all the drugs/injections on time but never thought more about it. November 29th 2007 - The time came for us to go for egg collection. Hubby had to take the day off work and off we went. We were really nervous as this was a really important day for us. I had requested to be put under a general anaesthetic as I didnt want to stay awake for the procedure. Its funny because I can happily watch programs such as Casualty and Holby City but feel sick if its happening to me! We had collected 9 eggs Yay. We got a call from the hospital the next day to inform us that 6 of the eggs had fertilised. Wow I could potentially have 6 children Oh My God! The rest of my pregnancy was horrendous. I was being violently sick from week nine onwards up to ten times a day. I ended up in hospital with dehydration because I couldnt keep anything down. I had severe hypermesis. This continued until week 22 of the pregnancy. I didnt really have a great pregnancy and thanked myself that I was having two babies so I hopefully didnt need to go through it again. Weeks 30-35 I ended up spending most of it in hospital as I had one thing or another wrong. I was glad to have gone into early labour at 35+2 weeks as I had had enough of the pregnancy by then. Both babies were head down and I was very lucky to have a consultant who favoured the natural birth over a c-section even though it was twins. I laboured for 3 days and was very tired. In the end due to the onset of pre-eclampsia and the labour not progressing fast enough, I was put on a syntocin drip to speed things up. Fortunately I was given an epidural at my request so I have no recollection of the intensity of the labour pains. I was taken into theatre to deliver at 5.30pm in the

evening on 22nd July 2008. At 6.39pm my son was delivered and at 7.09pm my daughter was delivered (who nearly ended up being an emergency c-section). It wasnt until the next day when I was transferred onto the ward that I had my son with me. My daughter was taken away to the neonatal ward for being low birth weight nd (under 5lbs). After a week later of spending time in the hospital We were told to come in for Egg Transfer on the Sunday 2 December. The Embryologist told us that two of our fertilised recovering, learning how to be a parent and what it entailed, we embryos were grade A and A/B (the highest you could get) and the finally came home. The best feeling ever but now was when the hard other 4 were grades C/D and not worth even considering to freeze. work was going to start. So we decided that lets put the two best embryos in and hope for the best. We headed off home and now were in what they call the 2 Being a mum is a blessing and along with it comes a lot of hard but week wait (2ww). This has to be hardest part of an IVF cycle as all you rewarding work. I appreciate that IVF may not work for everybody are doing is waiting around until test day. I was told to keep busy but especially the first time and we were very lucky it did. Do not lose not as busy as I normally would have been and take it easy me and sight of what you are after and try and stay positive. Seek support taking it easy youre having a laugh. But someone must have from whoever you can as it will really help you through your journey thought I needed to because somehow I pulled a muscle in my back but my best advice is speak to your partner they are going through and was bed bound for at least 10 days. Now that was a hard thing to something tough too even though you as the woman are going do and worse still because I started analysing every single twinge that through it physically. If the twins ever ask where they came from, we would happily tell them. They have already been asking how babies I was experiencing. come out of the tummy but they have not asked how they get into them yet! Test Date was not until 13th December 2007. I couldnt sleep the night of 12th December because I was really anxious. Anyway, we both woke up in the morning early as hubby had to go to work and I took out the test that we had bought from Tescos and peed on the stick. The test line came up immediately that the test was working and the 2nd line came up immediately too. OMG, we were pregnant I couldnt believe it. It had worked. The feeling of joy was overwhelming for us. We were going to be a mum and dad! I had the biggest grin on my face that day and it was so worth it. I called up the Lister to inform them the result was positive and it was so nice to hear someone say Ah congratulations to you both. Monday 7th January we had a scan at the hospital. Ill never forget the words from the nurses mouth Ooh look here we have your baby. Heartbeat is strong and looking good. Oh and here we have baby no.2. I remember looking at hubby thinking What is she saying? The nurse looked back at us and asked You did have 2 embryos put back in didnt you? We both nodded to which she replied Well congratulations, both embryos have taken. Youre having twins! How on earth were we going to cope? I couldnt believe it but we were going from a family of 2 straight to a family of 4!

17

IVF - your stories, the legalities and the facts

I WASNT THE AVERAGE AGE!


So, there I was, navigating my way onto a continually busy M25 when my then three year old piped up inquisitively from the backseat: Mummy how was I made?... Well, I calmly replied: oh sweetieyou were made in a pot!
My husband and I had always Mummy Lorraine Bold agreed to be honest with our son, although not expecting it to be at such a tender age. We drove off that day, with my son sitting happily satisfied in his car seat with the answer as to how he was made I met my husband in 1999 and very early on into the relationship we had the conversation about having children. It wasnt a priority at first. We enjoyed travelling and then planning the wedding but as time went on we soon decided to think about starting a family. Unfortunately after 18 months of trying or TTC as its known in the fertility world things just werent happening. We went to see the GP and we both got referred for tests and after initial results we then had a referral to the fertility clinic. Another waiting game of 5 months and it was time for the appointment. Initially it was quite daunting. At just 25 we shouldnt be having difficulties, at least thats what I thought. All the magazines said that it was women over 40 who had the issues. Surely I should be able to fall pregnant naturally. I felt like such a failure. The consultant calmly said we both had issues therefore would be unlikely to conceive a baby naturally. I had cysts on my ovaries and my husbands swimmers sadly had quite a low motility as well. It was hard to believe that I wouldnt have a baby without intervention. I asked what could be done to assist things naturally without the need for IVF and the response was to get the other half to eat grapes! I had him eating half a bunch of grapes a day for six months. I also read up on various websites, lots of books were ordered and I even booked us both in for acupuncture treatments. We adapted our diets, stopped drinking, ate more green vegetables etc. I would have tried anything. Luckily our sense of humour remained throughout what can be a very stressful situation and after approximately 9 months of our healthy lifestyle I decided enough was enough and we would try IVF. This was a big decision but I felt I needed to be proactive and therefore give it a try. I had done my research and looked into the success rates and had friends with IVF babies from the clinic we had been sent to. This was a positive and helped us in our decision to stick with the clinic we had been given. After the lesson on how to do injections and being sent off with my box of medications it was time to get started. I wasnt too great with needles so we

18

IVF - your stories, the legalities and the facts

agreed that my husband would do the injections. This seemed a good idea at the time but you have to do it at the same time everyday and with train delays and unexpected meetings this soon changed. I think I soon got used to holding my breath and counting to ten and then thankfully the injections were done. The whole treatment was quite emotionally draining, travelling to appointments, dealing with friends and family asking questions. We hadnt told people until the treatment started what we were doing. Friends were supportive although didnt really understand the process involved. The first part of the treatment shuts your bodies natural system down, this stops you producing eggs naturally and makes you feel menopausal and quite tearful at times. I found great support through an online forum and I am still friends to this day with some of the people I met on the forum, now six years later. The second part of the treatment stimulates your ovaries to produce eggs. After approximately ten days you have a scan to see if they are ready to be removed. The clinic were cautious that I was their youngest patient ever so they gave me a low dose of the stimulation drug. I think once I was on this stage of the treatment I felt happier that the end was close. I had acupuncture throughout my treatment as this is believed to help relax you and can improve success rates.

emergency Csection. This for me felt like another failure I hadnt conceived naturally then I hadnt given birth naturally. Therefore my body had let me down again. It took a long time to get over this fact but we got our wish our wonderful little man who became our world. Not everyone is so lucky and for some IVF just doesnt work. Its a very complicated process but science and research is improving at such a fast rate. After three and a half years, we decided to try for a sibling. I wasnt desperate as I realised I was totally blessed with the one child. We were not so lucky this time as I had a miscarriage at seven weeks but fortunately we had a few embryos put in the freezer. We decided to give it one last try. Emotionally and financially we had to agree when enough was enough and we would just concentrate on our son. In March 2011 I had the embryos taken out of the freezer and two implanted. Obviously there was a risk of multiple birth but we had discussed this and wanted to take that risk. We had two successfully defrosted and put in. We were very lucky again and in December 2011 I had my second little man. IVF isnt always just for older women I still wasnt even 31 when I had my second treatment. I never lose sight of the fact that my husband and I have been very fortunate in the outcome of our IVF journey and realise that for some, there is no happy ending.

Little did I know about the horrible wait once the eggs are removed to find out if you are successful. This is known as the I wonder how long it will be until our second child asks how he two week wait (TWW). The eggs were collected and I was was made extremely disappointed I had 3 eggs, and only one fertilised. All the other women around me in the ward had at least 10 eggs so chances with them were so much higher. We then had to wait two days to see if it had survived before they put it back. Fortunately for us it did and we were then on the TWW. People told me I should be feeling tired, have sore boobs my sense of smell would be intensified and various other symptoms. I had none of that so as the days ticked slowly past my patience disappeared. Emotions were all over the place and I even had to walk out of Marks & Spencers as I felt I was surrounded by buggies. Stupidly I tested earlier than the suggested 14 days. It was a negative. Well that was it, clearly it wasnt meant to be and time to move on. Although feeling a little miserable, I went back to work and carried on as normal. The blood test on day 14 at the clinic seemed a waste of time. I was persuaded to go though. I told the nurse I felt it was pointless as I had tested already and I hadnt got a positive. The drive home was a very quiet one. An hour later the nurse called to say the blood results are back and she was pleased to say I was pregnant. I didnt believe it. I asked my husband to call back and check they had phoned the right person. We were very lucky and nine months later our beautiful little boy came into the world. After a thirty-six hour labour he was then an

19

Advertorial Feature baby top tips

By Mama Loves
Research 1 has found that swaddled babies can sleep better than other babies. It is believed that swaddling reduces the duration of crying therefore it is often used for restless babies. On the basis of the experience of some professionals and mothers, swaddled babies suffer with less abdominal pain. Swaddling creates an environment for the baby that is similar to a mother's womb a warm and secure confine, which represented its only known world It is perfect for keeping warm in the winter and for keeping cool in the for the 9 months. Swaddling may also help ease the discomfort of summer and is made from 100% cotton. Swaddles are available in colic in the early weeks many variations of design and colors. Independent adjustable How to Swaddle your baby correctly? Make sure you dont cover your tightness of the ribbons for the arms and for the legs gradually gives babys head or face with the wrap. Not all babies like to be swaddled. your baby more freedom for better movement as it grows. Swaddle Be sensitive to your babys cues or signals which tell you when they could be used with and without the removable insert, just like a plain are content or uncomfortable. Use common sense and avoid swaddle. Once baby grows older, the removable quilt inside could be overheating! used as a separate quilt in the baby's cot. Unlike ordinary swaddling blankets, Mamas Love swaddling wrap supports baby's head which Dont swaddle your baby too tightly! If your baby seems more makes handling of the newborn safer and more secure. Suitable to comfortable with their hands free, dont feel you have to wrap them. Babies need to learn skills in self soothing and regulating their use in cots, cribs, prams. emotions. Many like to find their fingers and comfort suck. Never swaddle your baby and place them on their tummies. This is not safe Benefits of swaddling your baby: Healthy babies sleep better and longer in a supine position, because and increases the risk of SIDS. Make sure when you have swaddled the Moro-reflex (uncontrolled arm movements) is restricted. This your baby and placed them in their cot, they are on their back with reduces unexpected startling movements and makes it more likely their feet at the bottom of the cot. There is no perfect time when swaddling needs to end. Each baby develops at an individual rate and for babies to fall asleep on their own. Swaddling can prevent a baby from scratching their face and eyes. will learn how to wriggle free eventually. Some experts advice Another important benefit of swaddling your baby is that your baby's parents to stop swaddling at 2 months and others say to continue spine is in the correct position, when swaddled correctly, which is an until closer to 6 months. There is no consensus on the perfect age. important element in a baby's development. When your baby is Mamas Love 3 in 1 swaddles! Specialist suppliers of unique designer swaddled in the wrap, he or she keeps a stable temperature. swaddling wraps from the heart of Europe , now available to buy Swaddling is a traditional method of infant care and it is widespread in the world, especially in Europe and Asia. Swaddling is becoming increasingly popular today and more and more mothers in the UK are going back to the traditional way of swaddling their babies. There are a number of different style of swaddles available on the high-street as well as online.

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20

allergy uk

Fact or Fiction - Allergies in Pregnancy


By Lindsey McManus from Allergy UK
There is a lot of confusion as to whether allergies can develop develop. It is hoped that these and other studies will provide in babies during pregnancy and breastfeeding. In this article more conclusive evidence in the future. Lindsey McManus from Allergy UK looks at some of those issues to put parents minds at rest. If there are already a number of foods that you are avoiding due to your own allergies, then it is wise to ask to be referred Mums-to-be often have lots of questions about allergies to a dietician (which you can arrange through your GP). This when they first find out that they are pregnant or if they are is particularly important if you are at all concerned that you planning a family, more so if they have an allergy themselves may not be getting the nutrition you need while pregnant or or there is a history of allergies in the family. breastfeeding. Certainly, this is essential if you are excluding key food groups such as dairy or wheat, to ensure that you There has long been a debate as to whether certain foods and your baby are not at risk of nutritional deficiencies. A should be avoided during this time due to the possibility of dietician can direct you to alternatives that will provide the causing allergies once the child has been born, and this area nutrition you need at this important time. continues to be investigated. However, recent research from large, well-organised trials has shown that there is no In terms of allergy, several studies have shown that babies evidence to support avoiding certain foods in pregnancy in are more likely to develop wheezy breathing and asthma if the hope that it will prevent the child developing an allergic their mothers smoked whilst they were pregnant. This may disease. be to do with the fact that these babies are underweight, and their lungs are less well developed. Whilst this does not Peanut allergy, in particular, is of great interest to relate directly to allergy, less developed airways in these researchers and those looking at how to prevent food babies will be even more affected than usual if they go on to allergies. The number of children suffering from peanut develop allergy. allergy has almost doubled in the last two decades. While medical research is looking into this area, there has so far The most important advice that pregnant women can put been no good evidence that any childhood allergy is caused into action is to take care of their general health and to eat a by eating the wrong foods, and thereby exposing the healthy, balanced diet and to stop smoking. unborn child to allergens. Most doctors therefore discourage mothers from avoiding potential allergens, For more advice because of the absence of evidence and that, by doing so, on pregnancy and mothers may be putting themselves and their unborn baby allergy go to: at risk due to not eating a diet sufficient in nutrients and www.allergyuk.org energy. or call Allergy UK on 01322 619898 In August 2009, the Government revised its advice to consumers about eating peanuts during pregnancy, breastfeeding and the first few years of life, in relation to the risk of developing peanut allergy in childhood. Until then, women had been advised to avoid peanuts during pregnancy and breastfeeding if there was a family history of allergy. The new advice is that you can, if you wish, eat peanuts or foods containing peanut as part of a healthy balanced diet, unless you are yourself allergic to them. This applies during pregnancy and while breastfeeding. The Government is currently funding a number of studies on peanut and other food allergies, with the aim of improving understanding of how and under what circumstances these conditions

21

apps for Parents

WOWMUM - The New App for Parents


Need to find nappy changing facilities FAST, looking for child friendly restaurants or cafs with room for buggies, highchairs and tolerant staff or simply want inspiration of somewhere new and fun to go with the kids...does this sound familiar? Often its all in a days work for mums but now theres a new FREE App which offers a helping hand. WOWMUM tells you where your nearest child friendly location is whether you are looking for indoor and outdoor play areas, eateries, shops, somewhere to breast feed, kids hairdressers and lots, lots more. You can search under three categories EAT, PLAY and PAMPER and it even has a nappy changing panic button for times you just cant plan for. Currently there are over 1,000 WOWSpots located across the UK and the number is growing daily. Its interactive too because if you discover a family friendly gem the App allows you to add a WOWSpot quickly and easily.

Pickled Pepper Books www.pickledpepperbooks.co.uk 10 Middle Lane, Crouch End, London N8 8PL As well as a lovely selection of books, this shop hosts some great events and story time activities. Not forgetting Mum, they do delicious coffee and healthy kids snacks. Its double buggy and breastfeeding friendly. The Albion www.the-albion.co.uk 10 Thornhill Road, Islington, London N1 1HW This pub is great for weekend feasting and having quality family time. Its buggy and breastfeeding friendly, has nappy changing facilities, toys and crayons for kids, high chairs, kids meal and a bottle warming service! Its also cosy with lots of character. Hackney City Farm Hackneycityfarm.co.uk City of London, E2 8QA A great day out where little ones can experience farming in the heart of the city. Its all geared up for families and even boasts an awarding caf and Larry the braying donkey! Daylesford Farmshop & Caf www.daylesfordorganic.com 208-212 Westbourne Grove, London W11 2RH Fantastic organic selection, surprisingly spacious (therefore buggy friendly), and bright and welcoming. Great for weekend brunches, but it does get quite busy. Elias and Grace 158 Regents Park Road, Primrose Hill, London, NW1 8XN www.eliasandgrace.com One of the cutest and coolest independent childrens fashion shops we have seen. It has a great little play area for kids while mum gets down to some serious shopping.

Nabrasa www.nabrasa.co.uk 505 Garratt Lane London, Greater London SW18 4SW This eatery offers an authentic Brazilian grill and an open salad buffet. Children under 6 eat free, its buggy friendly, kids cutlery and high chairs are supplied. Although it doesn't look too fancy the food and service most definitely is! Trotters www.trotters.co.uk 86 Northcote Road, London, SW11 6QN Its great fun to shop here for both adults and kids. The clothes are great quality and they also do first haircuts which are rewarded with a special certificate for bravery. Theres a huge aquarium to distract children while their hair is chopped. Full marks. Polka Theatre www.polkatheatre.com 240 The Broadway Wimbledon London SW19 1SB This is world class theatre for kids which offer a memorable and magical experience. The theatre also offers a relaxed caf, foyer with toys and a book corner, charming garden and playground with a giant cat and Wendy house. Kidsen www.kidsen.co.uk 111 Chamberlayne Rd London NW10 3NS An award winning childrens shop, Kidsen is a Scandinavian childrens store selling beautiful things for kids. A treasure trove of must have buys, including the gorgeous Angulus shoes for kids, the friendly staff and bright, buzzy atmosphere means you wont leave empty handed. Everyman Cinema www.everymancinema.com Hampstead and Belsize Park locations. Bringing back the magic of a morning at the movies Everyman hosts childrens films with activites for children aged 4 10 years. Films start between 10am and Midday on Saturday mornings. Great for rainy days.

WOWMUM is available to download on iphones and Android phones

22

23

maternity features

Does Yours Fit


Nickie Evans, Baby Buzz Harriett Warren, Boudica Lingerie

Did you know that 4 out of 5 women are wearing the wrong bra size? Your bra size can change rapidly especially in the teenage years, so its important to be wearing the correct size. You would be amazed at just a few of the benefits gained from wearing the right size whether its the impact on your bodyshape, confidence boosting, improving aches and pains (in your neck, shoulders, back), preventing sagging, preventing lumps forming in the breast tissue or just promoting healthy growth, the list really is endless! With so many things to be gained for doing something as simple as getting fitted for the right bra, you would think that more people would be inclined to do it? Whatever the reason, lingerie shops almost always offer a complimentary fitting service, so why not take up the offer?

Do you know the benefits of wearing the right size?


As a young child / teenager it can be embarrassing to go in and get fitted, but believe me weve all been there and the lady measuring you will just want to make sure you are wearing the proper size. Remember that when buying a bra you need to ensure the back is tight enough to support your assets, the cup is wide enough to encase the whole of the breast tissue and of course be comfortable. Measuring isnt accurate anymore, as a tape measure does not have elastic as a bra would or underwire so the cup size will need to be fitted for the width of your breast. Signs of an ill fitting bra are very obvious, including the back band riding up, straps falling off shoulders, ribcage feeling bruised, straps digging into shoulders, red marks or the visible four boobs! big enough wire not just for comfort but it can also get in the way if its touching your milk ducts which can cause great pain and blockages. You will also need to buy a bigger band (or back extenders) and start on the tightest (to allow for loosening) to prepare for your ribcage to expand. For feeding, you mainly buy a cup (or two) larger three weeks before DDay to prepare for the swell of milk production.

So if you havent been fitted for some time, why not pop in to a lingerie store and ask to be fitted, more often than not it will cost you nothing but gain you more comfort, less pain and best of all a new underwear wardrobe! Read our review on maternity wear bras provided by Bravado Designs, available in Of course as you grow up and start having children of your store now at Boudica Lingerie. own you will find that your breasts will start doing all sorts of weird, wonderful and sometimes painful things. For many Visit www.boudica-lingerie.co.uk or contact them on: 0203 women, their breast size will increase significantly, this may be 601 1008 to book your fitting appointment now. a temporary increase, and once baby is born and/or breastfeeding has stopped their breasts reduce back to their original size. For others the increase is there to stay - whoopie! Your breasts can increase one cup size during the first trimester alone so it really is important to look after your body. When buying for pregnancy and feeding the rules are different. The most important factor is comfort and the fitting is different. During the pregnancy its imperative you have a

See our review of maternity bras and tank tops on page 25.
24

maternity essentials tried & tested

This month we asked Mum Emily to review a selection maternity lingerie from Bravado! Designs.
Mum Emily with Daisy 2 and 8 months pregnant

Olivia, (Mummy to James, 9 weeks) What were your initial impressions? Lovely design, very in keeping with modern styles and pretty detailing on the bibs. Did you find them within the current fashion trend? Very much so, the dresses are knee length and easy to wear whilst out and about. Did they feel comfortable? The dresses are very soft, the fabric hung nicely and didnt cling in any of my bad areas. I struggled to adjust the buttons during a feed but you really do get the hang of it very easily. I also had a long sleeved top which was extremely comfortable to wear underneath and sits just beneath the bust line therefore making feeding just as easy whilst wearing the whole dress and better yet it felt like a second skin. Were there any negative aspects to the items of clothing given? No, the dresses are lovely and also machine washable so there is no added worry if anything spills over them. Would you purchase these products if you found them on the high street? The sets are a little pricey but you get what you pay for and with many different styles of bibs available you could have a full wardrobe very easily at hand. I would certainly recommend the dresses to my friends and family. I would be very interested in seeing the new styles of bibs should they bring any more out.

The body silk seamless Nursing Bra What did you think of the style? The style of the bra is very practical and with the removable foam pads it can be worn just like any t-shirt bra. What did you think of the material? The material is nice and soft and sits really nicely against your skin. It also washes well. Were the bras comfortable and did they make you feel well supported? This bra is ultra comfortable and almost feels like you're not wearing a bra compared to other nursing bras that are like scaffolding. You feel really well supported and the thing I liked is that the removable foam cups hide breast pads or nipple show which is ideal. Was there anything that you didnt like? I would personally have preferred it to have moulded cups rather than the removable cups as sometimes they can bunch up in the wash and when you put them back, the shape of the cup can sometimes be visible through tops but the practicality of having them there if you do or don't want them is handy. Would you buy this product and would you recommend the products to a friend? I will be buying another of these for nursing and at a great price would definitely recommend to friends.

Bravado: The Bliss Nursing Bra What did you think of the style? This bra is very pretty unlike the majority of bras you will find in high street shops. I had it in black and ivory and they were very versatile under all garments as it's seamless, with a low plunge and has moulded foam cups, ideal for hiding breast pads or nipple show. What did you think of the material? The material is soft and silky feeling and with the lace detail on the front makes you feel more sexy at a time where it's hard to find a bra that will do that for you and be practical. Were the bras comfortable and did they make you feel well supported? The bras are comfortable and support well. I am used to an underwire but with this bra I felt just as supported and it feels just like a 'normal' bra. Was there anything that you didnt like? There's nothing bad that I can say about this bra, I think they have got it just right, it's pretty but practical. Would you buy this product and would you recommend the products to a friend? I think it's a good price for a good bra and will see you through nursing and beyond. I would definitely recommend to friends.

Buzz Rating: 4.5/5

Buzz Rating: 5/5


25

Coco Go is a 3-in-1 lounger, rocker and stationary baby seat, adjustable to 3 positions; fully lie-flat, reclined & upright. Coco Go is perfect for relaxing, sleeping and playing. With its patented flat-fold design and high quality custom carry-bag, the light-weight Coco Go is ideal for travelling. The padded machinewashable seat cleverly conceals a 2-speed vibration unit and features a 5-point safety harness and blooms new smart-buckle; Coco Go provides snug and luxurious comfort for baby no matter where life takes you.

26

family focus

Acupuncture and IVF does it really help?


Today I would like to take off my antenatal teacher and doula hats that baby. Chinese medicine is to put on my Chinese medicine cap. superb for any gynaecological issues. Ovulatory issues, Acupuncture for IVF rose to international prominence back in 2002 irregular cycles, difficult when a German study was published, showing that using periods, PMT, scanty or By Jani White acupuncture during the transfer treatment made a significant profuse bleeds, PCOS, statistical difference to the positive pregnancy outcomes: 42.5% in endometriosis, cysts, fibroids, the acupuncture group compared to 26.3% in the non-acupuncture polyps, we have a great toolbox for approaching any gynae group. There was a great flurry and women flocked in droves to disharmonies, and not forgetting, for improving male sperm have acupuncture with their transfers, and still do to this day. parameters. What is interesting is that although this study is just about one very specific aspect of the IVF process, since that study the reputation Acupuncture will always take an individualised approach to the for acupuncture as a valuable support in all aspects of fertility specific treatment that you need. We call this the constitutional treatment, natural and assisted, has just grown and grown. diagnosis, which means that we will look at your history, your signs and symptoms combined with our Chinese pulse and tongue But why is acupuncture so helpful? What does it do? diagnosis, and determine the recipe of needles will be very specific Most people these days understand something about the idea of to exactly what is or isnt happening in your particular physiology, acupuncture the meridian pathways and acupuncture points, in the context of your particular emotional circumstances. using the needles to influence the function of the body, sorting out the symptomology, improving our energy and enhancing our So how do you find a fertility acupuncturist? wellbeing. Stress relief is a key factor in what makes Chinese A good place to start is with the BAcC, the British Acupuncture medicine such a valuable adjunct for IVF treatment, as we all know Council. Their website will have a register of qualified practitioners that IVF can potentially bring with it a great deal of pressure - of Traditional Chinese Medicine, who have all done an accredited physically, emotionally, financially IVF can impose significant 3 year degree course. Look for the letters Lic Ac MBAcC. This stresses into a couples life. indicates a practitioner who is bound by the BAcC Codes of Safe Practice and Codes of Ethics, and indicates that they are fully The stress that is so specific to IVF is the terrible tyranny of the insured and licensed to practice. Rollercoaster of Hope and Despair. When we go into our stress response, triggered by fearful or doubtful thoughts (a very It is important that you find a practitioner who has studied and overriding part of every womans IVF experience), we flip our body understands all the processes and treatment protocols of IVF. back and forth between the receptiveness of hope and the Acupuncture is an excellent adjunct to IVF, and a good fertility clenching closed down held back non-receptive energy of fear. This practitioner will be using and modifying their treatment to meet has a very significant impact on the way that our hormonal and match what your IVF is trying to do. Anyone worth their salt messaging works, as stress hormones will always override and will be more than happy to discuss their post graduate training. Do interrupt reproductive hormones. Acupuncture can be so be sure to try and find someone who has specifically studied IVF important for helping you to stay in a calm and receptive frame of protocols. It is important to have a practitioner who knows what mind & body for if the mind and heart are clenched (stress not to do, as well as what to do. response), this will inhibit the bodys ability to conceive. Acupuncture is very beneficial for helping to keep you in a more Acupuncture is Wonderful it made all the difference in my own constant oxytocin-led state; it helps to reduce the flipping into the pregnancies and recoveries, and I speak from the heart in adrenal stress response that is so detrimental to conception. suggesting how helpful this wonderful medicine can be in supporting you to a healthy conception, gestation and birth. In Chinese medicine we work with all the aspects of your health. Diet and lifestyle advice is a prominent part of having acupuncture Jani hosts a regular monthly Fertility Awareness workshop in treatment, helping to steer you to the right kind of rest and Crouch End, Making Babies, discussing in great detail how to exercise, and the all-important nutrition, helping to find the right manage the stresses of trying to conceive, and looking carefully at foods for you, specific to increasing your fertility, advising about the importance of diet and lifestyle influences. For more informasupplements, or possibly herbs, that will enhance your vitality and tion please log on to her website: help make you more fertile. The ovum that becomes that child is www.naturechild.co.uk/fertility-workshops entirely dependent on the building blocks that you ingest! Chinese BAcC: www.acupuncture.org.uk medicine is just as important for treating men. 40% of fertility ATCM: www.atcm.org issues are male factor, and there is just as much that we can do to AFN: www.acupuncture-fertility.org help improve sperm as there is that we can do to treat every aspect ACT: www.actlondon.net of womens gynaecology. The health of the sperm is the health of Zita West: www.zitawest.co.uk

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baby products tried & tested

Is it easy to handle / use? Absolutely. The carrier comes in one single piece therefore no fiddling around as in other carriers. What is it made from? The main fabric is 100 % organically grown cotton. Other materials are 100 % polyester. Is it easy to put together? Yes, you just pop it over your head and put your arms through. Simply put your baby in with the side straps kept loose and then clip on the two front buttons and pull the two side pieces to the right tightly. What age is it suitable from? The BabyBjorn Comfort Carrier is suitable from 3 months up until approximately 2 years (depending on weight) How practical is it? Amazingly practical as you can have your child facing inwards or outwards and when you need to go somewhere without a buggy this is perfect. Benefits: Great value for money considering the time span the use covers. Not many carriers go up to this age bracket.

Is it easy to handle / use? Very much so. The travel cot simply pops open from its carry case in an instant, perfect for travelling. What is it made from? The travel cot is made from 100% polycotton which makes it very easy to keep clean. Is it easy to put together? You simply remove it from the carry case and it pops open. There are four plastic rods that you insert into clearly marked areas and instantly the cot is ready to use. There is a mattress included, albeit not the the best. What age is it suitable from? The travel cot states suitable from 6 months to 18 months. How practical is it? Very if you are travelling. It is extremely lightweight at just 2.2kg. The flip side is that if your little one is crawling or fidgety they may move with the cot. Benefits: Fantastic value for money and a great alternative to have somewhere for baby to sleep if you are at friends or family.

What is it? A fantastic new range of bibs new to the market. There are 13 designs to choose from. What is it made from? 100% silicone Is it easy to use? Yes it has a very easy fasten mechanism at the back which is also adjustable. The silicone is extremely soft so no risk of rubbing to the neck. What age is it suitable from? Suitable from 6 months. How practical is it? Very easy to use, my little one loved the look of them. As soon as they were taken out of the envelope she wanted to try them on. They also stayed on, which is a first! Benefits: Great value and many designs to choose from. Something to please any child. Dishwasher safe and also folds away for easy storage. Fast delivery and very friendly service.

What is it? A new design of blanket to keep baby warm when taking in or out. What is it made from? Fleece Is it easy to use? Yes. The blanket has little leg pockets and then wraps snugly around. Baby can then be put into their car seat or buggy and strapped in without unwrapping them as the buckles and straps fit around securely. What age is it suitable from? There are lots of sizes available from newborn to 2 years old. How practical is it? Very practical and a blessing when it is so cold outside. Always nice to keep baby warm when having to go out and about. Benefits: Good value for money. Prices start from 23 and come in a wide selection of colours. Fast delivery upon receipt of payment.

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association of breastfeeding

Breastfeeding - a world of support


By Emma Pickett

It seems breastfeeding hits the headlines every few weeks. Often its a piece of new research showing how breastfeeding can protect babies and mums. Last week it was all about statistics which isnt as boring as it may sound! The infant feeding survey has just been published and the results make fascinating reading. In 2005, 76% of mums started breastfeeding. In 2010, it was 81%. Mums are more likely to breastfeed if they are over 30, were older than 18 when they left education, live in any area that isnt economically deprived and if they come from an ethnic minority. 96% of black mothers start breastfeeding and 95% of Asian mums. After that the story is less happy for those keen to encourage mums to breastfeed. At 6 weeks, only 55% are still breastfeeding. At 6 months, only 34% are doing ANY. The government and health organisations across the world recommend a mum breastfeeds exclusively for the first 6 months - but only 1% of babies in the UK are experiencing this. Thats the same number of babies being fed ordinary liquid cows milk at 4-6 months (a practice known to be dangerous to a babys health). The vast majority of mums who gave up breastfeeding in the first two weeks wished they could have gone on longer 85%. Of the mums not breastfeeding by 8-10 months, 63% wish they had continued for longer.

supply and a lack of facilities to continue to be hospitalised in the first year of life. breastfeeding once back at work. Babies who are breastfed are less likely to be obese adults and suffer from Type 2 Just under half of mothers breastfeeding in diabetes and other obesity-related a hospital (or birth centre) (48%) were told illnesses. Breastfeeding helps to protect about how to recognise their baby was against cancers too both for baby and for getting enough milk and only 37% felt they mum. were confident enough to recognise whether or not their baby was getting As well as through the helpline, mums can enough. That lack of confidence will get support from mother-to-mother inevitably make an impact. When a volunteers at drop-in groups or via email. breastfeeding mum has breastfeeding The Association of Breastfeeding Mothers friends, she is considerably more likely to encourages new families to check out their continue breastfeeding herself. If SHE has website for further information about been breastfed herself, she is more likely to support or perhaps youre a continue perhaps suggesting the breastfeeding mum and youd like to train significance of family support. yourself to help other mums. Mums get support from midwives, their health visitors and also from trained volunteers. Since the last infant feeding survey in 2005, the National Breastfeeding Helpline has been started. 64% of new mums were aware of the helpline in the survey. The helpline is staffed by volunteers from 2 breastfeeding charities and is open from 9.30am to 9.30pm every day of the year. Babies who were exclusively breastfed for a minimum of four months were considerably less likely than babies who were never breastfed to suffer from diarrhoea, constipation and sickness or vomiting. Babies who are breastfed are also less likely to suffer from allergies, ear infection and respiratory infection. They also run an annual prize, called Pams Prize, to recognise the work of breastfeeding support volunteers so why not nominate someone who has made a difference to you or tell other new mums about the ways breastfeeding volunteers might be able to help them. Wouldnt it be good news if in the next infant survey, any mum who wanted to continue breastfeeding received the support they needed to help them to do so? Breastfeeding doesnt work out for everyone and isnt right for everyone but when it isnt your choice to stop, it can be a frustrating and upsetting experience. Wouldnt it be great if everyone could continue for just as long as they wanted to?

Mums talked about sore nipples, the baby For all of these reasons and more, not latching, worrying about their milk breastfed babies are significantly less likely

For more information please call: 0300 100 0212 Or Visit: www.abm.me.uk

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educational

The Government recently announced that learning a foreign language will be compulsory from the age of seven in England's primary schools. This is music to the ears Of Deborah Cheney, who runs Ecole Nicole, a well-established French and Spanish language tuition service for all. This includes the popular, Netmums award winning language clubs for children. Deborah said, at Ecole Nicole, we believe in the importance of introducing a language at an early age, through a well structured and fun method. Our clubs carefully tailor teaching systems to the age of the children and introduce new concepts through play, including games, flashcards, role-playing and singing. We have noticed that children feel immediately at ease in the setting of Ecole Nicole, a true immersion experience where almost the whole class is delivered in French or Spanish. Ecole Nicole is always looking for new ways to bring languages to all and Deborah was excited to announce a new venture for 2013, with sessions for both children and adults to be held at The Little Teapot in Winchmore Hill and Baskervilles Tea Shop in Palmers Green. Deborah said our ethos at Ecole Nicole is that learning a language should be fun. And what better way to do this than in the relaxing surroundings of these two lovely local tea shops. The programme starts from 4 February: The Little Teapot, Green Lanes, Winchmore Hill Tuesdays 10.45 to 11.30 - Fun French (3 to 5 year olds) 12.00 to 1.00 - French conversation for adults. Wednesdays 10.45 to 11.30 - Fun Spanish (3 to 5 year olds) Thursdays 11.00 to 12.00 Spanish conversation for adults. Baskervilles Tea Shop, Aldermans Hill, Palmers Green Mondays 1.00 to 1.45 Fun French (3 to 5 year olds). 2.00 to 3.00 - French conversation for adults. 4.00 to 4.45 - -Fun French afterschool club (5 to 11 year olds). Tuesdays 10.00 to 10.45 - Fun Spanish (3 to 5 year olds). 11.00 to 12.00 Spanish conversation for adults. Prices are just 8 for children and 10 for adults, with a 10% discount being offered to readers of Baby Buzz. To book please contact Deborah on 07910 155537 or at info@ecolenicole.com, and dont forget to mention Baby Buzz. Ecole Nicole also offers a wide range of French and Spanish classes across Enfield, just contact Deborah for details of times and prices. www.ecolenicole.com

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baby buzz travel

This month weve teamed up with Luxury and Little Ones. A newly established travel company that came about after owner and travel expert Kathryn Wright spent many hours, days and weeks searching for hotels both in the UK and abroad which were luxurious enough for both herself and her husband but enjoyable too for their children.

Abama Golf & Spa Resort, Tenerife


Abama Golf & Spa Resort is a 160 hectare finca tucked away in Gua de Isora, a tranquil and little known area of the island of Tenerife. It is a luxury hotel which is a home away from home for many families. There is a wide choice of accommodation from double rooms to one bedroom villas or two bedroom suites. The Club Abami kids club offers over 305 square metres of indoor space as well as its own outside play area and there are eight diverse play zones divided into Zone for Relax and Nap; The Theatre Space; Scientific Area; Chill-out Zone; Hand Work Space; Lego Zone and Reading Area. The complimentary Club Abami is open daily from 10am to midnight for children between the ages of four and eleven inclusive. Lunch and dinner can be provided for those attending the kids club for an additional charge. Baby products can be provided by the hotel which include car seats for transfer to and from the airport or for any rental car, high chairs, bottle warmers, nappy changing mats, sterilisers, baby baths, baby walkers, baby bouncer chairs, pushchair parasols, toddler guard rails for the bed, playpens, travel cots, childrens buggies with sunshades and microwaves for heating baby food or milk. There may be additional charges for this so please ask on booking. The Resort has a gorgeous spa providing a wide range of treatment, a Jacuzzi and hydrotherapy pool, a thermal circuit and a complete fitness centre. At the heart of the Abama Golf & Spa Resort is The Citadel where youll find most of the bars and restaurants. There are no less than eight dining options including the signature one Michelin Star Restaurant M.B. The Citadel also houses the hotels library and screening room, its decadently indulgent spa, its secret gardens and ornamental lakes and swimming pools. For the more active there is a Dave Thomas-designed golf course and SnchezCasal Tennis Academy.

For more information, please contact: info@luxuryandlittleones.com www.luxuryandlittleones.com

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benefits that work for you

Are You Money Savvy? Save Hundreds Using Retail Discounts and Simple Planning
There is nothing more frustrating than knowing there are bills to pay and shopping to buy but not having enough money to cover these costs. The current average household spend is 474 per week*. This means, now its more important than ever for families to start being more money savvy. Managing your finances can be difficult. However, by assessing your outgoings and making some simple changes, you can save a substantial amount of money. Some simple changes: Make a list it is easy to get carried away when out shopping, putting items into your trolley which arent necessarily needed. By making a list you will be able to estimate how much your shopping will cost. This way you wont spend more than you have budgeted for. How to get money saving offers: You may already know of a variety of companies and websites offering these discounts and deals. However, you can get better deals from those that are directly offered to you as an employee benefit. For example employee benefit schemes, such as the Busy Bees Benefits BusyBuyer scheme gives working parents access to exclusive offers and deals via an online portal. Schemes such as BusyBuyer are available from employers and can be tailored to meet the needs of staff. To access money-saving deals you can browse through a variety of categories from food and restaurants to fashion and leisure time. Some offers will require you to pre-purchase a gift card to use in stores, others you can purchase to use online to get money off and cash back.

Plan in advance birthdays and Christmas can destroy your budget. Plan what you are going to buy a few months in advance to take advantage of offers and sales which are only available for a limited time you can grab yourself a bargain and still buy fabulous gifts for friends, family and even yourself! Change your habits check out retail outlets and online stores you wouldnt usually use to take advantage of offers. Below are some examples of the offers available: Save money on your weekly food bill Store cards many of the supermarkets and high street stores Eat out for less at Pizza Hut, Bella Italia and local offer reward cards where you can collect points by simply restaurants and pubs spending money in the store. These can then be used directly to Spend less when treating the family to days out get money off in store or exchanged for vouchers which can be Enjoy fantastic deals on trips to Disneyland Resort Paris used in other retail outlets. Making sure you have your cards Make DIY a little less stressful with discounts at B&Q and scanned each time you shop will ensure you collect points. Using Homebase the vouchers can often save you more than getting cash off your Reduce the cost of new clothes for the whole family at bill. Store them up to see big savings. Mothercare, BHS, House of Fraser and Marks and Spencer Bulk buy when you find an offer you simply cannot resist, why Ensure you are geared up for the school holidays by not make the most of it by bulk buying? Stocking up on frozen stocking up on outdoor toys, art and craft essentials, food, toiletries and other products we have room for is easy and books and stationary items at Toys R Us and WH Smith you will save more in the long run. You can even save a Use Love2Shop vouchers to make great savings at a considerable amount by renewing your car breakdown, for variety of high street stores. example, for all cars in your household at the same time, especially when there is a discount available. Using retail discount offers and making some simple changes can save your family a great deal of money. By planning and taking Retail discounts and voucher schemes are fast becoming very the time to find the offers which will really benefit your family, popular. There are already plenty of families taking advantage of you will become more money savvy! If you want to start saving saving hundreds of pounds each year by using money-off money for your family ask your employer to join the Busy Bees vouchers, discounts and cash back deals. Benefits BusyBuyer scheme where you can enjoy savings for the whole family using exclusive discounts, offers and cash back deals Using these deals, families can enjoy savings on childrens clothes locally, nationally and online. Working parents using the Busy and toys, days out and entertainment, to food and drink, holidays, Bees Benefits Childcare Voucher schemes also get free access to home and leisure and sports and fashion. exclusive retail discounts of up to 20% using their online account. For more information visit www.busybeesbenefits.com.

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33

recipes - tried and tested

Recipe Allergy: Fish

Kedgeree

Baked Pear Puree with Vanilla and Cinnamon


Recipe Ingredients: 3 Organic Pears, cored, peeled and halved A sprinkle of organic cinnamon A drop of organic vanilla extract Recipe Method: Step 1 - Mix the pears with the vanilla and cinnamon Step 2 - Place the pear mixture in a shallow baking dish with about 1 inch of water. Step 3 - Bake the pears at 180c for 25 minutes or until they are tender. Step 4 - Let the pears cool down and blend or mash depending on the consistency your baby is used to. You may want to add a little water if you want a thinner mixture. Recipe Eating Occasion: Breakfast Lunch Dessert Recipe Suitable for Freezing: Yes Recipe Makes: 2-3 servings

Recipe Ingredients: 1 small organic onion, diced Half teaspoon mild curry powder 1 tablespoon organic unsalted butter 1 fillet smoked mackerel, skin removed and flaked with a fork 64g (a handful) of baby spinach leaves, well washed 1 free range egg, hard boiled and chopped into about 8 pieces 80g organic rice 2 cardamom pods Recipe Method: Step 1 - Cook the rice and cardamom pods until tender Step 2 - Melt the butter in a large pan and add the onion and saute over a low heat for about 5 minutes until the onion is soft and has absorbed the butter Step 3 - Add the curry powder and continue to saute for another minute Step 4 - Add the spinach and allow it to wilt, before adding the rice (make sure the cardomom pods have been removed) and stir until the rice is a nice yellow colour Step 5 - Add the flaked smoked mackerel, give it all a good stir and then serve with the pieces of chopped egg on top Recipe Suitable for Freezing: No Recipe Makes: 2-3 portions
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food & recipes

Baking at home with your toddler!


This doesnt have to be as daunting as it sounds and can be extremely fun! After being sent some child friendly baking equipment, I asked one reader to see just what could be done, when put to the test

Step 1 Sieve the flour with baking power

Baking with toddler - Fruit slice


Helpful Tip: Measuring ingredients in cups is that bit easier for your toddler than using scales. Ingredients 1 punnet of fruit fresh, preserved or tinned 2 cups self-raising flour 1 cup caster sugar cup sunflower or vegetable oil 1 cup milk 1 teaspoon baking powder (if using big fruits i.e. apricots, peaches, cherrys - no need if using blueberries, raspberries or currants) 2 eggs

Step 2 Add sugar, eggs & oil

Step 3 Mix well, add the milk and mix again

Step 4 Grease the cake tin and line it with flour

Step 5 Pour in mixture and layer the fruit on top

Step 6 Bake at 1600C for 35 minutes or till the top is golden

Modern day mothers have to juggle work, home and children. You may not be an expert in the kitchen but enjoy having dinner parties, cooking on special family occasions or having fun baking with the children.

For more information, please contact us on:

customerservices@edeshomewares.co.uk

www.edeshomewares.co.uk

35

nutrition and exercise

Exercise tips for your your bump and beyond


Just because you fall pregnant doesnt mean that you cant start or remain active throughout the duration of your pregnancy. The NHS states that the more active and fit you are during pregnancy, the easier it will be for you to adapt to your changing shape and weight gain. It will also help you to cope with labour and get back into shape after the birth. Do not continue exercising if your doctor advises against it. Keep up your normal daily physical activity or exercise (sport, running, yoga, dancing or even walking to the shops and back) for as long as you feel comfortable. There are many gyms and clubs available that actively encourage pregnant women to keep fit whilst pregnant and even classes that help look after your little one after youve had your child so that you can get back in shape.

Exercise Tips
Try to fit the exercises listed below into your daily routine. They will strengthen your muscles so that you can carry the extra weight of pregnancy. They'll also make joints stronger, improve circulation, ease backache and generally help you feel well.
Always warm up before exercising, and cool down afterwards. Try to keep active on a daily basis: half an hour of walking each day can be enough, but if you can't manage that, any amount is better than nothing. Avoid any strenuous exercise in hot weather. Drink plenty of water and other fluids. If you go to exercise classes, make sure your teacher is properly qualified, and knows that youre pregnant and how many weeks pregnant you are. You might like to try swimming because the water will support your increased weight. Some local swimming pools provide aqua-natal classes with qualified instructors. Paramount Fitness Special Offer Exclusive reader offer: 1st 2 months FREE then only 29.99 per month or NO CONTRACT, no joining fee and only 35 per month. Over 60 classes per week included, 3 free personal training sessions, personalised diet plan, crche & drop in centre & Kids Club. Free tea & coffee for mums.

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37

mummy blog - stage 1

The Mummy-to-BeTrimester 1.
By Lindsey Jenkinson Aaagh! Its happening! really So there we were, the two of us, kneeling on the bobbly mat on the bathroom floor, holding a plastic cup of wee aloft as though it were liquid Nitroglycerin. After a pause of about five years (probably thirty seconds) we plucked up the courage to let the contents of the cup meet the little plastic stick. If a line appeared then our lives would be changed forever. I couldnt help wondering why wed opted to sit on the bathroom floor; it was freezing and the tiles needed work. Before I could start questioning our choice of bathroom floor tile grout, my boyfriend, Andrew, plunged the stick into the cup and set it on the side of the bath. A line appeared. I knew it would. Id been bursting in to tears at TV adverts for two weeks now, and much as I love food and washing powder, Im not usually Next morning, I headed to the hospital to make sure Baby (aaagh! prone to full on snot-fits at the sight of Freddie Flintoff wheeling a Its really happening!) was growing in the right place. Although an shopping trolley around Morrisons. unplanned pregnancy, I was feeling very vulnerable and already There were other signs, of course. My skin had suddenly taken on protective of the little bundle of cells that was busily growing in my the texture and tone of a fourteen-year-old schoolboys in the grip tum. I hoped, as I sat in waiting room at the Early Pregnancy Unit of a deep-fried Mars Bar addiction. At thirty-seven, I hadnt had a with women who for some reason or another were encountering bout of spots for a while so I knew something was awry. My boobs difficulties with their pregnancies, that everything would be ok. couldnt be touched as theyd become ridiculously painful . . . oh, Some of the women coming out were inconsolable with grief, and and my period was late. Very late. Its still late, actually! others, like the obviously-pregnant teenage girl in school uniform sitting with her mum, just looked shocked and confused. It was a We spent the next few days bumbling around in a daze. Although real eye-opener. This was my first baby and I really didnt know we were happy, we were deeply shocked (Im not sure why we what to expect. were shocked: I am not Mary, this was not the Immaculate Conception). Wed discussed having children many times, and its After a long wait it was my turn to go in. I wont go in to too much what we both wanted. Its just that I always assumed wed be detail apart from to say that the test was internal, though in no living in a house with a massive pine kitchen table and a garden, way uncomfortable. Under normal circumstances Id probably with me swishing about like Nigella Lawson. I didnt imagine that have laughed at the all of comedy-looking equipment, but I was wed be living in a one-bed flat with questionable bathroom tiles nervous and out of my comfort zone. The staff were wonderful, without so much as a window box, never mind a kitchen table. To and exceptionally reassuring. After a bit of fiddling about, they be fair, I was never going to be Nigella Ive got light brown hair confirmed that Baby was indeed in the correct location, and even for a start, and I loathe cooking. showed me an image of him/her on a screen. Wow! That shut my nervous babbling up! The doctor and nurses were beaming and After a week of staring gormlessly into space and walking around congratulating me, and even though I was lying at a funny angle on like zombies we decided that we should go to the doctors. Apart the bed, with my knees in the air and a row of people looking at from wanting to get the pregnancy confirmed by a medical the business end, I discovered that I was beaming too! professional (my boyfriends superb at deciphering pregnancy test instructions, but hes an architect not a doctor and I still thought What a relief, but aaagh! Its really happening! we may have made a mistake), Id been feeling utterly exhausted Looking forward to meeting the midwives and going for my and had been having strange cramps to the side of my abdomen. twelve-week scan next. Crikey! Id never felt anything like it before, so off we trotted. The journey to the doctors was quite amusing. The surgery is located close to my mums house and lots of my family and friends live nearby. We didnt feel ready to tell anyone our little secret yet, so I put the hood up on my coat as we got off the bus. My boyfriend didnt have anything to take the edge off his bright ginger hair, so we just hoped that nobody would spot us. Everything was fine until we took a detour into M&S, next door to the doctors, for a loaf of bread. As we joined the self-service queue, I could see my mums cousin (and one of her best friends) ahead of us. Emergency! If she spied us I knew wed get the third degree, so we hid behind the newspaper rack until she went away (unfortunately she seemed to be having a lengthy argument with a pile of carrier bags so we were there a while). Eventually she toddled off and we hot-footed it to the surgery, hiding behind the loaf. The doctor confirmed that I was seven weeks pregnant (aaagh! Its really happening!), but told me that my stomach pains could be an indication of an ectopic pregnancy so she arranged for me to have a scan the following morning at the hospital. She also told me that I was severely constipated. Nice.

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By Lawrence McGrandles Jnr

Mr Ma !

mr ma

There are always milestones in parenting, or should that be mill stones, which mark those moments you knew were coming or dreaded the arrival of. Two such mill stones, sorry, milestones occurred for me this week. The first was arrival of my dads voice from my mouth. I always said I was not my dad and I would not become my dad but I guess that was just wishful thinking. And what brought about this transformation? A single word, one single word of three letters. The word? Nah! My five and a half year old son came home from school equipped with a new phrase, Nah! and my initial reaction to just let it slide has now been overtaken by an OCD like obsession to correct this vocal torture, and this is when my father spoke through me, with an abrupt we dont say Nah! we say No. For me the word du jour was Fink and not Think as my father seemed to believe it should be pronounced. Of course this failed to take into account that anyone who spoke correctly at my school was posh and I certainly was not. My son on the other hand is posh but for a slightly unusual reason, he is on the Autistic Spectrum and up to the age of 3 he had no verbal language but with lots of help from various support networks such as school, local council, internet, books and hard work he is now verbally where he should be for his age except for the fact that for some reason or other he is very, very polite. It is almost as if to enable himself to communicate he feels he must observe all the rules of courtesy he has ever encountered. And then along comes Nah! which he some how manages to imbue with an exclamation mark even though he is speaking, so now its a game with him smiling whenever he Nah!s me, waiting for the queued response of we dont say Nah! we say No which follows as sure as night follows day. I cant help myself. To the outside observer it may even appear that my son is now dictating my responses but that is only because he is. And all of this constantly sparks the memory in me when, at a low point, I said to my wife that we would never know the joy of one of those remember when he said that thing moments. Now we are just lucky if he is silent when he is asleep. The second milestone was a particularly special one for me and one that many dads of my generation will have looked forward to for some time, that father son (or daughter) moment where you play your first xbox game together (obviously other consoles are available and I did toy with the idea of saying video game but then It would look like I had travelled back in time to the 80s which is a bit beyond even my console).

This was in all honesty not something I had imagined happening for some time, if ever, but my very insightful wife was able to find a game that wouldnt be too challenging (for me) and would keep my son interested. This was how I ended up unwrapping a copy of F1 Racing Stars on Christmas Day, it is a sort of cartoon like racing game that sees bobble headed stars of Formula 1 racing around various tracks throughout the globe all the while using rocket balloons, rain storms, warp speed and various others bits and bobs to defeat the rest of the racers. I was somewhat dubious about my sons ability to play the game given that up to this point he had never even held a controller but, needless to say, after two attempts he was able to race unaided round the course with only some minor shouting and gesticulating from competitive dad about which way he was supposed to go. The game can be played me against him if I am feeling in need of a little lift (the sort of lift one gets from trouncing a five and half year old at a video game) or in single player mode where he plays and laughs while I shout left, no left, no the other left. The game is now simply referred to as the racing game by him and requested on a fairly regular basis. Of course the next time he asks to play I may simply say Nah!

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40

baby must haves

Hug Me Bear Sleepsuit 16

Natures Natalie Ragdoll 25

So Cute 6 Piece Set 32

Tiny Squares Top & Trousers 22

Printed Padded Jacket 26

Pure Love Bamboo Greeting Blanket 20

Teddy & Ele Cot/Cotbed Bumper Set 32

Hug Me Bear Hamper Pink or Blue 48

Soft, luxurious Natures Purest naturally coloured cotton products don't just let your baby's skin breathe easier. Made to the highest ethical labour standards, they also ensure your grandchildren and great grandchildren will breathe easier tomorrow.

For more information please visit: www.naturespurest.co.uk

The Natures Purest Team 41

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43

baby buzz arts & events

FAMILY FUN IN FEBRUARY


Here at Baby Buzz, we look to find the best family arts and events to suit all tastes and budgets. In fact, we aim to stay away from the obvious and easy to find and try to hunt out the more interesting and intriguing family treats that London has to offer. Lots of these wonderful little morsels of fun are low or no cost and we are unbelievably lucky that there are so many wonderful companies dotted around the capital offering imaginative, affordable and family friendly entertainment for all ages. Every month, we try to include something from all over London and wed love to hear from you if theres something amazing going on in your community that we can share with our readers.

NORTH LONDON
ARTS DEPOT 5 Nether Street, London, N12 0GA - www.artsdepot.co.uk (02083695454) Rubbish - 15th to 17th February - A visual and playful production exploring the unexpected value of discarded objects. Enormous Turnip - 21st to 24th February - Mr and Mrs Chickweed can't resist planting one last seed before they retire and disaster happens! CIRCUS SPACE Coronet St, N1 6HD - www.thecircusspace.co.uk (020761304141) Deep down, havent we all wondered if were secretly destined for the trapeze? Whether its juggling, tumbling, or pretty much anything in-between, the Circus Space has a class on it during their regular 12-week terms. JACKSONS LANE THEATRE 269a Archway Road, London, N6 5AA - www.jacksonslane.org.uk (02083414421) Dogs Dont Do Ballet - 20th to 23rd February - The story of a small dog who wants to do ballet. THE LITTLE ANGEL THEATRE 14 Dagmar Passage, London, N1 2DN - www.littleangeltheatre.com (02072261787) The Pied Piper - 13th to 17th February - This humorous one person show combines puppetry, live music and storytelling. LAUDERDALE HOUSE Waterlow Park, London, N6 5HG - www.lauderdalehouse.co.uk (02083488716) Shadow Tails - 16th February - Shadow Tails with Drew Colby using shadow puppetry as he tells and sings his stories. The Rubberface Rub-Ba-Da Stew - 23rd February - Puppet tricks, clowning, song and dance

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SOUTH EAST LONDON


WATERLOO EAST THEATRE 3 Wootton Street, London, SE1 8TG - ww w.waterlooeast.co.uk (02079280060) The Agony and Ecstasy of Steve Jobs - 5 th to 23rd February A hilarious and harrowing tale that takes us on a journey that shines a light on our love affair with our devices and the human cost of creating them. IMAGINE CHILDREN'S FESTIVAL Southbank, Belvedere Rd, SE1 8XX - www.southbankcentre.co.uk /imagine (02079604200) An annual festival of music, comedy, performance, interaction and theatre, with appearances by children's writers and entertainers. For the first time in the festival's history children will be programming some of the events. Please see website for further details. 11 th to 24 th February UNICORN THEATRE 147 Tooley Street, Southwark, SE1 2HZ - www.unicorntheatre.com (08700534534) A Thousand Slimy Things - until 7th February The Present - 5th February to 9 th March Sensacional - 19th to 24th February Little Red: You Know Who! - 8th to 10 th February 1001 Nights - 13th to 17 th February Liar Liar 31 st January to 6 th March

PURCELL ROOM South Bank, Southwark, SE1 8XX - ticketing.southbankcentre.co.uk (02079604242) The Queens Knickers - 18th to 22nd February - A celebration of the garments we all wear but never show.

EAST LONDON
HALF MOON YOUNG PEOPLES THEATRE 43 White Horse Road, Lo ndo n, E1 0ND - www.halfmoon.org.uk (02072658138) Stuck - 9th February - In Stuck, it all begins when Floyd gets his kite stuck in a tree Dreamtime - 16th February - Dreamtime is a performance set in a jungle world of puppetry and reptilian adventures. The Tinderbox - 16th February - A soldier acquires a tinderbox, which gives him riches beyond his wildest dreams. Misunderstood Monsters - 23rd February - Misunderstood Monsters with St Georgie, a professional monster catcher. DISCOVER CHILDREN'S STORY CENTRE 383-387 High St, Stratford, E15 4QZ - www.discover.org.uk (02085365555) Discover is a magical world where children up to age 11 embark on an indoor story trail, aided and abetted by fantastic characters whose role is to help kids invent their own stories. New exhibit Journey to Space opens on February 16 th. ARCOLA THEATRE 27 Arco la Street, Kingsland, London, E8 2DJ - www.arcolatheatre.com (02075031646) Around The World In Eighty Days - 29 th January to 9th February Follow Victorian adventurer Phileas Fogg as he embarks on an epic journey across the globe. STRATFORD CIRCUS Theatre Square, Stratford, London, E15 1BX - www.stratford-circus.com (02082791001) Tyrannosaurus Drip - 22 nd to 23 rd February The egg of a waterweed-munching dinosaur ends up in the nest of a Tyrannosaurus Rex.

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SOUTH WEST LONDON


POLKA THEATRE 240 The Broadway, Wimbledon, SW19 1SB - www.polkatheatre.com (02085434888) The Wind In The Willows - Until 16th February - Enjoy the charming adventures of childrens classic. The William Stories - 19th to 23 rd February - Take a trip into a world of imagination, books, fairytales and exploring. Why the Lion Danced - 20 th February to 2nd March - Every 13th moon the monster Nian pays a visit to the village..

NORTH WEST LONDON


THE TRICYCLE 269 Kilburn High Road, London, NW6 7JR - www.tricycle.co.uk (02073726611) Dogs Dont Do Ballet - 18th February - The story of a small dog who wants to do ballet. Gingerbread Man - 20th February - Can the Gingerbread Man outwit the dastardly Fox?

WEST LONDON
LYRIC HAMMERSMITH Lyric Square, King St, London, W6 0QL - w ww.lyric.co.uk (02087416850) Mavis Sparkle - 9 th February - Mavis is on a journey north to see natures biggest light show with her own eyes. Jack at the Beanstalk Caf - 16th February - A nourishing feast of stories in the Beanstalk Caf. How To Catch A Star - 19 th to 23rd February - Once there was a boy, and the boy loved stars very much.

CENTRAL LONDON
SADLER'S WELLS Rosebery Avenue, EC1R 4TN - www.sadlerswells.com (02079077071) Questions and Dancers 9th February A half-term double bill. In Duck Man, the audience are invited on a journey to the bed of the ocean in a deep-filled bubble bath, while OMG! is an energetic tale of losing your voice and the hunt to find it again. LEICESTER SQUARE THEATRE 6 Leicester Place, London, WC2H 7BX - www.leicestersquaretheatre.com (08448733433) Ben Target and Matthew Highton: Bear Hugging and Other Skills - Until 23rd February Join a charming rogue and his loveable fool on an exuberant journey into constructive chaos and back. ST JOHNS, SMITH SQUARE Smith Square, Westminster, London, SW1P 3HA - www.sjss.org.uk (02072221061) Jack Frosts White Christmas - Until 16th February - A story to melt the frostiest of hearts.

***Please call venues or visit websites for details of performance times and prices.*** 46

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Natalie Klineberg m: e: w: 07798 588 028 natalie@littlebowpeepltd.co.uk www.littlebowpeepltd.co.uk

For more information, please contact: Linda Soper Tel: 0208 361 1991 Mobile: 07427 040 296

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Valentines Day
Bring the nature in this Valentines Day and surprise someone with plants that will last. All of our gifts are arranged by hand, with love in mind. Valentine's Day is a time to show love and appreciation to those closest to us sweethearts, parents, siblings and friends. Flowers are a popular way to spread Valentine joy. Their vibrant cheer is especially appreciated now, in the middle of winter. We have tried to think outside the pot. See our collection of planted pots and miniature gardens at www.evansonearth.co.uk To place your order email us at gardens@evansonearth.co.uk or call us on 07535 667 844.

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