Thursday, 28 June 2018

BABY SLEEP TRAINING & OUR SLEEP ROUTINE


Ahhh baby sleep, the subject that every new mum discusses at least five times a day. 'Oh she was up twice last night', 'he hasn't napped all day', 'when will she sleep through the night?!' etc etc etc. It's all we talk about isn't it! 

Well I'm going to talk about it some more. Sorry. But I guess if you're reading this then you're interested and don't mind.

That first night when you get home, exhausted, your baby won't sleep and you're starting to think you aren't ready for this sleep depravation... I remember that feeling so well. And then those first few weeks when you're up every few hours and have already resigned yourself to never having a full night sleep ever again in your life. Well hello from the other side, let me tell you, you will!

You can read about Alice's early sleep habits on my 'thoughts on early motherhood post' here, but in short, we had an awful first month, and then she tricked us and started sleeping through the night. She did this from about 1-4 months, and both of us got all smug and thought 'what is everyone going on about, parenthood is easy!'. She didn't nap in the day much but we didn't mind as we got to sleep through the night. She went to bed around 9 ish and we didn't really have any sort of bedtime routine.

THEN came the four month sleep regression. It started off with one wake up for milk, and then two, and then three...and then every two hours! After a few nights of this, plus her not going easily any more, I said that's it...she's going to bed at 19:00, we're establishing a routine AND i'm going to start sleep training.  I needed some time to relax and wanted my evenings back.

I remember googling sleep training methods and all seemed so harsh and complicated, and if you've also thought this I can guarantee it's not as scary as it sounds and it does work! 






Sleep training 


This is just a fancy way of way of being consistent, and following a pattern. Most of the methods just revolve around getting your baby so self soothe. I'd read a lot about the 'crying method' which in short is putting your baby down and letting them cry for a bit before going in to resettle them.

I know, it sounds cruel. Terrible. Evil. But I can assure you that the hardest time is the first night you do it and you really are making your life easier in the long run. 

So the first night I did it, I remember my husband saying 'this is horrible. It isn't worth it'....and fast forward to a few weeks ago when he said 'Alice is amazing, she just puts herself to sleep every night'. I was like ERM HELLO WHO PUT IN ALL THE HARD WORK FOR THAT??? And he is so thankful now!  But anyway, that first night, she screaammmed and cried for ages. But of course she did, she'd been cuddled or rocked to sleep every nigh up until then. For 4/5 months she'd never had to self soothe or been given the chance to. 

We started off by giving her milk, burping her, having some cuddles, laying her down with dummy and her bunny and saying 'goodnight, love you'. Then we would leave the room. If she started crying then we would not go back in until 2 minutes, ish. We would then go in, place one hand on her chest and say 'shhh', put dummy in, and leave the room and not come back in for another 2 minutes then 4 then 6 etc. The first few nights I had to go in multiple times to resettle and when she was really bad I would pick her up, cuddle her and resettle her. 

I'm not going to lie, that was hard! But nothing was as hard as the first few days and each night she got better and better until we only had to go in once or twice, and now we rarely need to go back in at all.


How it worked for us 



Well like I said, she now self soothes every night! We did the same for nap times at home and we went from a baby who refused naps to a baby who put herself to sleep when tired. Even now we let her do this and most of the time she goes to sleep straight away. Sometimes if she's over worked or not tired it takes a few resettles (she's also recently got into the habit of chucking dummy out), but we'll always leave her first to self soothe. 


Now I'm not saying this will suddenly make your baby sleep through the night. In fact we started at just over 4 months and she only started sleeping through the night again at 9 months...BUT I think because she was used to self settling, when she woke up in the night she maybe just learnt to do it then too. She went from waking up at least twice to suddenly sleeping through, and I can't think of any other explanation apart from maybe she is still waking up but just putting herself back to sleep. 


Cheeky face ^ This was during the most difficult sleep phase! Luckily she was as cute as ever...


Everything is just a phase 



I know this is hard to imagine when you're currently going through a tricky patch, but honestly everything is a phase. Someone said that to me when I thought I'd never have a nights sleep again, and it is so true! In hindsight I can see that every single thing is a phase. I think that will make baby number two easier, because I've been through it all and I know that everything ends at some point, and there will be another phase to deal with. 

'This too shall pass', and all that!

After we'd mastered the sleep training and got a little bit confident, the first set back came around the time we got back from two back-to-back holidays (Mauritius and Lake District) and we had transferred her into her big cot in her own room. I like the call this phase the 'flailing arms and legs' set back. Basically everytime she was drifting off to sleep she'd start flinging her legs and arms around and jerking her body and jolting herself to awake. The first few nights this happened I literally held her legs and arms down and shhhhh'd her to sleep and got so frustrated! After a little google advice search I decided to go back to my tried and tested sleep training method and be consistent. It worked! After a week or so she stopped doing it and self settled herself. 

But then on to the next set back a few months later when she was 9 months...standing up in her crib! This one was a tough one as one day she suddenly learnt to pull herself up and then she got obsessed with it. Again, it flustered us for a while and she would continuously stand up and not go to sleep. This made us go in more which in turn made her stand up more because she knew it got our attention. We got through it by leaving her for a while and when we went in after 5 minutes or so, we'd put her snuggly blanket on her face and put her down on her front. She still does stand herself up but she's learnt that we won't come in and eventually she gets tired and drops to her front. I've peaked through the door and watched her hold her blanket or bunny and then snuggle it down. 

And now the current set back we're working through which is her chucking out her dummy on purpose, because she knows we'll come in and give it back to her, thus giving her attention. I've watched her actually pull the dummy out, chuck it onto the floor and then look at the door waiting for us to come in. Jason still runs in to give it back to her but I've said to him we need to not do it as the more we do it, the more she'll chuck it out because she knows we'll come in. Baby's are clever little things aren't they! And this is the negative of having a dummy I suppose, them throwing it out and giving yourself more hassle on the long term (but it also settles her so *shrugs shoulders emoji*). 

So anyway that is the latest phase she's in, but I'm working through it by doing the same thing, leaving her for 5 minutes and then when we settle her just put her on her front with a blanket. Most nights she just goes off easily with no fuss and we don't even go back in, but on the odd occasion we'll just go in once or twice to help her get off and then once she's asleep, she's down for the night. 

Whatever the next phase is, again I will leave her and continue the same methods I always have and I know that it'll pass. 

For us, sleep training was the best and it's allowed us to have a baby who self settles herself to sleep and sleeps through the night. 


Our sleep routine



As I mentioned above, we didn't really have any sort of regular routine until she was 4 and a half/5 months. I'd heard that 19:00 was the perfect time for a little one to go to sleep, which seemed crazily early when we were use to putting her down with us. But it really works! I thought because I was putting her down a lot earlier, she would wake up more, but it actually did the opposite. It's like they get into a deep sleep and don't get overtired. Also, making sure they settle in their own space (instead of on the sofa downstairs with you) means they get into a deeper, more relaxed routine. I know it's a hard transition, and I also know it gets harder before it gets easier when you make the changes, but that hard work definitely pays off. 

When we started putting her down earlier, we would make sure she didn't sleep past 1700, as I noticed that any time she did she would take a long time to go down that night. She's also had only two naps for a long time now. Below is our routine, give or take an hour. Even when she was waking in the night, this was the routine we were doing and are still doing. 

Of course there are the odd days  when she's ill and it may be different or others where it is impossible to follow and she just has to sleep when she can in the car or whatever, but this is generally what we do, and she is always happier and in a better mood when it's a day like this. Another thing to add is she sleeps really well at home and rubbishy when out and about, unless it's in moving car. She will have two hour naps at home and out in the buggy we'd be lucky to get half an hour! Also there has been the random day (I think there has been 3 all together) where she has refused an afternoon nap altogether but I know she's definitely not ready to give it up completely as she gets tired in the pm. 

07:00 - 08:00 Wake up. Give water. Change nappy. Play. Breakfast. She always wants to go down for a nap roughy two hours after she wakes. So if she wakes at 7 I'll put her down at just gone 9 etc. 

09:00 - 10:00 Milk and I put her down for her first nap. She on average has two hours but sometimes it'll be longer and at other times a little under. More often than not longer! This is the most important nap of the day and I will try and plan to go out after it so I know she has at least one nap at home a day. If she has 30 mins out and about in the afternoon it won't be as bad as if she's only had a short morning nap. 

11:30-12:00 ish Wake up. Get dressed. Then give her lunch. If I need to get out quickly I will just take a pack lunch out for her. 

Anytime between 14:00-15:300 Milk and afternoon nap. If she's had a really long morning nap and a not very busy day then this one is sometimes shorter. 

16:30 - 17:00 Wake up between these times. I won't let her sleep after 17:00 latest! Unless I know it'll be a late night. I give her dinner around 17:30 ish. 

18:15 Bath time! Our favourite bit of the day! After a good scrub and play we take her out, quick leg massage, pjs, book and bed. 

19:00 Sleeptime! She will sleep through until at least 07:00. Sometimes she might not be ready to go down at 19:00 and might play around with bunny but I won't take her out! I did this once and it was a mistake and I was always afraid of it getting into a habit. A lot of the time she'll go down straight away but If she cries, chucks dummy out etc I will do the same thing I have always done and that is wait a few minutes before going back in. 



The above photo was taken after a successful car transfer, hence the coat and dummy clip. It was a freezing February day so she didn't overheat! I included these to show you the sleepyhead sausage bit I talk about in the tips

Sleep routine tips

  • Start as young as possible. We waited too long as didn't know what we were doing, but next time we will start much much younger. The quicker you get into a routine, the quicker you can start good practise. 
  • Make sure that you put them down awake! This is so key in sleep training and is the secret to success. Once they learn to self soothe, they will put themselves back to sleep in the night too.
  • Use white noise to help self soothing!
  • Don't let your bubba sleep past 17:00 latest! Anytime Alice sleeps over this we have a hellish night settling her down.
  • Get a blackout blind! We have recently bought the gro anywhere blackout blind and love it! Looks hideous but does the job and good if you don't want to get proper blinds. It'll be winter again soon anyway! 
  • It's called routine for a reason, try and stick to it as much as possible. Eventually when it gets to bedtime, your baby will immediately start to be sleepy and know its bedtime. 
  • Defuse lavender or camomile in the room before as this helps with sleep. 
  • Linking to the above, use gentle products with lavender in. Sleepy feet foot oil is a great one!
  • Introduce a comforter/bunny from a young age. Alice has her favourite blanket that she loves and bunny, and when she sees them she now automatically goes into sleepy mode. 
  • We used a sleepyhead and absolutely loved it. It made the crib to cot transfer a breeze! Also when we tried to wean her off it we took the sausage bit out of the sleepyhead for when she still wanted that comfort as a sort of bumper. 



I hope this post has answered some of the many questions sent to me about sleep training and how we did it. If I have missed anything at all out, please comment below and I'll answer! This was a mammoth post and I did try to include anything I could think of!



Lots of love,

Morgan Alice 

Tuesday, 19 June 2018

SUMMER BUCKET LIST


I have reached the stage of my life where nothing excited me more than a seasonal change, and spring into summer has got to be up there with the best (winter into spring is the all time best). I know, I'm old, sue me. I started up a note on my phone a while ago with a bucket list for each of the reasons so thought I would share my summer one to give you guys some ideas but also to make sure I do them all!

1. Go to a British beach and go swimming in the sea! We have a beach fairly near us (Mersea) which we go to a lot but never go swimming in the sea and this needs to change! I think Alice would love it and there's nothing better than a bit of vitamin sea. 

2. Strawberry/raspberry picking and then make something with the produce. Pavlova? Jam? Yum. 

3. Host a bbq! We go to bbqs all the time at my parent's and stuff but I want to get our own one and have people over for it. Alice loves it when we have people over too! She shows them all her toys and it's adorable.

4. Go to dedham, hire a boat and go rowing down the river! Considering we're always there, it's crazy that Jason and I have never been on a boat together just us. And again, I think Alice would love that. 

5. You know me, queen of picnics, well I would love to do an evening sunset picnic! I'm thinking chilled wine, strawberries and a juicy salad.

6. Go on a road trip to somewhere new. A little village in Suffolk. Somewhere on the coast. Who knows. 

7. Jimmy's farm! This has been on my list to go to for ages and think summer would be the perfect time to go. Also Alice is now the perfect age to enjoy it (it's in Suffolk by the way, just off the A12 before Ipswich) 

8. Have a bonfire and make s'mores! We did this loaddssss last summer and I deffo need to re-create this year. We used Oreo/digestive thins with giant marsh-mellows. 

9. Swim at an outdoor pool. I love swimming outdoors. Nothing makes me feel like I'm on holiday more! OK so it's not so easy in England but I actually think I may cross this off by the end of the week! My uncle and auntie have just got a gorgeous country cottage with a pool and we're taking Alice there this Friday. Pray for good weather!

10. For me and Jason to have a date in the garden after Alice is asleep. No phones, no tv.  A full dinner, dessert and drinks. Oh and by candlelight!

What's on your summer bucket list?

Morgan Alice 
x

Wednesday, 13 June 2018

14 THINGS THAT HAVE CHANGED ABOUT ME SINCE BECOMING A MUM

Alice is one year and one month old today, (year post here), and I was thinking how much she has changed in that time! From being a cute squishy lump, to this cheeky, energetic girl who chats away. A year goes quickly, but it's a long time when you think at how much they change, gradually. That got me thinking, if she's changed that much, how have I changed? I went from a 24 year old who had all the time in the world for herself and husband, to a 25 year old, who is now lucky enough if she can go to the toilet without an audience. Surely motherhood, and all that comes with it, has changed me? Of course, some is for the worst, but the positives outweigh the negative! 




1. One that I didn't really think about, my hair has got frizzier. I knew about postpartum hair loss, but what I didn't factor in is my coarse, curly hair. That regrowth doesn't just stick up and can be tamed by one spritz of hairspray, it is curly and uncontrollable and is impossible to keep in one place. If I try and hair my up I look like Elizabeth Bennet after an electric shock! Not a good look. It's no thinner, just messier. 

2. Before having Alice I was for sure a night owl. I could go to bed at 23:30 most nights and, if I had it my way, wouldn't get out of bed until at least 10:00 the next morning. I was NOT a morning person. Now, I'm still a night owl (hello watching Love Island at early hours of the morning and binge watching Netflix) but I'm also an early bird. Because I have to be. Alice is getting up at 7/7:30 no matter what we do the night before, so I have to get up at that time. But now I'm used to it, I actually quite like it. Don't get me wrong, it's painful when I hear her first morning babble, I wish I could press snooze on her, but it has encouraged me to get up, and get ready! Before, I would leisurely get ready and leave the house at 12 and be annoyed I've wasted the day, whereas I'm forced to get ready and make the most of the day. We can get up and leave the house at 9! We get so much more done in the day and get to places when they are dead quiet. Sometimes if I have a lay in, I'm actually annoyed at how much of the day has wasted. 


3. I would say I'm more compassionate, for sure. No more judging the mum trying to negotiate with her toddler having a tantrum in the supermarket or the parents allowing their kids to watch the iPad in the restaurant just so they can have a conversation. When you become a mum, you suddenly have this respect for every other woman that's gone through what you have, and it brings you closer to them! Like your own mum, how much more did you appreciate everything she did for you! When someone I know has a baby, I want to offer to come round cook, clean and everything in-between because I know what it's like. 

4. Here's another physical one for ya, I have this new friend. A flap of skin at the bottom of my tummy. He's not shy, he'll make himself known in any outfit I try to wear and always likes to make himself heard when I'm running down the stairs. Gross. You know the bit I mean though, where your tummy stretched so much in pregnancy that there's loose skin which can't be tamed no matter what you do. Ok fair enough I haven't tried that hard, but I can feel that the skin around there is just sort of broken. Stretched and lost the elasticity. Oh well, I'll worry about it properly once I've finished having children. 

5. I value coffee more. A lot more. When I was pregnant, the smell made me feel ill so I didn't really have any, and before that I'd have one if in the right situation, but wasn't fussed if I didn't have one. Now, on the other hand, I need the stuff. I routinely have one in the morning (after my water/breakfast) and then will want one mid morning when the tiredness hits. 

6.  Another positive is I'm more organised. I know I don't have the time to be rushing around in the morning so my bags are always unpacked and repacked the night before, lunches made, kitchen tidy, outfits laid out, to do lists made. I love it! 

7. I would definitely say our relationship has changed. I could right a whole post on this point alone but I'll try and keep it brief. Before you have children it's just the two of you, what is there to even argue about? Trivial stuff and then you could go on a date and have a full nights sleep and wake up feeling happy again. But when the baby comes you are tired, fractious, irritable and frustrated. Of course you will snap at each other! There's so much info about becoming a parent and what to do around that, but no one tells you your relationship will change. Yes in some parts for the better, your partner will probably have a lot more respect and admiration for you to say the least, but you also feel more vulnerable and less confident which makes you more defensive and so on and so on. So we definitely had to work on our relationship, trying harder to be more patient and kind to one another. We are so much better now, maybe even better than before, but it just takes a little more work and patience. 


8. This is a random one, but I had to include it. I'm more willing to spend more money for an easy life. Before I had Alice I'd go to Aldi and do most of my shopping as well as popping into Sainsbury's/iceland/town for all the different bits I needed in order to get the cheapest and best deals. Oh no, not now! I don't have the time or the energy for all that, and going shopping with a baby isn't easy. You don't realise how easy it is to get in the car and just go until you've had a baby. Picture shopping at aldi with a baby; 

             ........you get into the cramped car park, baby is screaming and making the stressful parking situation more stressful, there's 3 baby spaces already taken, do you risk it and wait for one to free up or do you park in a normal space? Once you've squeezed into a normal space and opened the baby's car door up, it only opens 3cm wide before bashing the next car, which sets off their car alarm. Baby is now crying and you try to get baby out but there isn't enough space to sort car seat out so you pull them and their leg is caught in strap. Baby finally out, now you need to get a trolley, you get all the way over there and you don't have a pound/trolley token so you try and find one, all while holding baby, and then then do a poo. 'Oh dear.. I'll change the baby'....no you won't, there isn't any changing rooms. ARGHHHHHHHHHH. Ok changed the baby on the backseat, go back in to do your shopping, then you get to the checkout and then whizz everything through at 70 MPH and you don't have time to pack so you have to do it at the end which adds more stress. Then you go back out the car and unload all the stuff and try to put baby in the carseat, then realise you have to go right the way back to put the trolley in and get your pound which means having to leave baby in the car alone. 

No thanks, I think I'll just pay more and go to Waitrose. Baby spaces right next to door/trolleys. And staff willing to help you with anything. Oh and free coffee/cafe/changing rooms. 


9. Linking to number 8, I value my time wayyyy more. I'm not willing to get roped into doing something with someone I don't really want to see, or doing something I don't want to do. Now I'm back at work and have to work some weekends, time is precious! Each family day is important. 

10. I'm definitely less confident, like I hate going clothes shopping as I know nothing will fit, and I look back at photos of myself from pre baby and I'm like 'whyyyy can't I look like that again' (hello under active thyroid + postpartum). But at the same time, I care less? It's weird, it's sort of like I don't like how I look as much, but I don't care what anyone else thinks because I've had a baby. Working on this one though. 


11. I'm more hairy....just gonna leave this one here. Thanks hormones. 

12. I'm less 'fun' I guess. Well in a young sense of the word 'fun' at least. I don't care for going out out. I'd rather stay in and having a movie night or even have people over to mine for drinks. That way I can still put Alice to sleep, not worry about her being in a different bed, and then have fun in my own house. So yeah, I'm definitely more of a house bunny these days. 

13. I have less anxiety! Number 14 is the only reason I can think for this one. Before Alice, before I got pregnant, I would very frequently have anxiety for no reason. I'm sure if you've had it you'll know what I mean. Your chest feels heavy, your tummy is in knots and you can't even think of a reason why! As soon as I got pregnant I didn't get it and now it only happens occasionally. Yes I worry more, but it doesn't feel as horrible as anxiety because usually with worrying you can think of a solution. And a cuddle with a sleepy bubba helps too! 

14. My heart is undoubtedly fuller. Alice brings me more happiness that I've ever felt before. Jason and I will spend our evenings talking about her, looking at photos of her, and even going in to watch her sleep (creepy). She's filled such a huge part of my heart that I wasn't even aware of. She completes me! And having a fuller heart and feeling overwhelming happiness is always a pretty good change!


Morgan Alice 
x

Friday, 8 June 2018

JUNE LUST LIST // FASHION, HOME AND BABY

I currently have so many draft blog posts written and waiting to go, yet all the photos for said blog posts are on my old laptop which has died and I'm waiting to get the photos off! (one of which is the highly requested sleep training and bedtime routine!) 

I thought in the meantime, I'd do a lust list with a few different categories as I LOVE to read these! None of these links are affiliate or sponsored in any way, just stuff I love and have my eye on! 

Enjoy!


FASHION 


I recently bought this after seeing it on Hannah Gale's top 10 and can confirm it is even dreamier in real life! So flattering, comfy and easy to style. I'm actually wearing it to a wedding next week too. 


Straw bags are everywhere at the moment and I've had my eye on this one for a while! I've looked around but I think this one looks really high end for a high street price. 


I had my eye on this dress for a wedding but it sold out in my size! Such a shame as this was my fav one on the entire site and I ended up getting something else. If I can justify it after I've been paid I may have to get it still because it is sooo pretty! 


Sometimes it's the simple clothes which look the best! I have this in black and LOVE it. So comfy and flattering, and it has pockets. It also comes in this yellow, which I may have to get too, blue and white. Paired with statement earrings and a cross body bag. HELLO. 


The perfect summer sandal to go with everything. Would look great with a tan leg and some red nail varnish. 


How pretty are these?? I need them asap! 


The sunglasses that can anyone look instantly cool, and they come in lots of colours too! 



HOME



I've wanted this for adages but haven't bought it as no space in our kitchen. We could potentially be moving soon and this will be one of the first things I put up in our new kitchen. Love it! And it's on sale! 


Another thing I've put off getting until we move is a statement lamp for our lounge. I love this one from John Lewis. 


You all know I love a picnic, but I am lacking a good picnic rug. I have some garish waterproof ones but I want a proper old school rug that doesn't cost a small fortune. This m&s one is a steal and so pretty! 


Speaking of picnics, we all know wine is an essential picnic item but it doesn't taste the same in some cheat disposable glass. This Waitrose range look like actual wine glasses and are the proper shape! This is the red wine one but we have the white wine ones and the tumblers. 


Lots of people ask about my grey pom pom cushion but it was a TKMAXX steal and I couldn't find another. These are a little more but look a lot better quality and I love them!! Can I justify three of these?? Probably not but I'll keep lusting over them nonetheless. 


I have been wanting a nice pouffe for ages as when Im giving Alice her nighttime bottle I'm bent right over. A footstool would be a lot more comfortable! I think I'll wait to order it in a neutral grey when I have another one. This is my favourite one I love it! 



I ordered this a while ago and it went down a storm on instagram! I wasn't sure when I first unwrapped it as it looked huge (really good for price), but as soon as I put flowers in it I loved it. I makes any bunch look good! Perfect for short, dumpy arrangements. It's always in the centre of our dining room table. 


BABY



All the heart eyes for this! Now Alice is SO on the go rompers are a must and this one is so pretty. 


This is the dress I bought for Alice to wear to some weddings we have coming up. I showed it on instagram and lots of you asked for the link so here it is! I just love it. And such a bargain. I looked online for dresses for ages and most were at least double this. This was my favourite. 


And these were the sandals I got! I thought they would be perfect as she can wear them all summer and as they aren't pink they won't get as grubby as quickly. 


Had my eye on these since I saw Lifewithoaksandolive feature them on her instagram baby haul. How cute?! The lemon print and open back makes these a winner for me. I haven't got them yet because, you know, no money, but I can assure you these will be mine very soon! 



Don't think I've ever seen a cuter baby grow tbh. The only reason I didn't get this is because it comes with a hat which I don't need and Alice has enough pjs! Imagine this on a little newborn with a cardigan though. 


We got this for newborn Alice last summer and I stupidly sold it! So gutted. But I love that it's back again this summer! It's super comfy for babies, cool for hot days, and comes in one for boys too (link here


I love a two piece and she doesn't currently have any that fit her so this could be my next purchase. Love that it's blue too! 


I love yellow on Alice and I've noticed a serious lack of long sleeved tops in her wardrobe. Imagine this with little leggings and sandals! Cute. 

What's on your lust list?

Morgan Alice 
x

Thursday, 7 June 2018

ONE YEAR OF ALICE IVY


I'm not going to be that cliche mum who says, 'I can't believe it's gone so quickly' or 'how has it been a year'....except I am and seriously, where has that year gone?! I'm sure it's even more cliche to say you're being the cliche mum but it's true! 

Although it feels like last week that I gave birth, it also feels like a lifetime ago and I can't quite remember life without her. What did we even do with our time before a baby?! Took long baths and watched more netflix, probably. I don't even want to imagine my life without Alice, she really is my best little friend and I love spending every day with her. 

When she was just over one month old, I decided I was going to take a monthly milestone photo of her with flowers. I'm so pleased I did this! I took the photo on the 13th of every month and I think it's the perfect little keep sake and memory. Side note - I think next time I will do these with something a little easier/cheaper/more difficult to destroy in seconds, like the good old milestone cards or a letterboard. By month 9 I had a 5 second window to take the picture or Alice would go for the flowers, destroy them, and then probably eat them. I used good old bunny as a distraction for the majority of the latter ones. 

1 Month 





13th June 2017



One month of Alice! I hadn't yet decided I was going to do a monthly series, hence this one not having a 'one' in flowers, but this was taken when she was exactly a month, and it's one flower (and our favourite type, peonies, which will always remind me of newborn Alice) - so I thought it was a good first photo. After one month of her we were slowly getting the hang of being parents, she was already pretty much sleeping through the night and luring us into a false sense of confident and I was by now bottle feeding. We had such a rough first few weeks with feeding and she was SUCH a happier soul after I made the switch. Once i'd got to grips with bottle feeding and feeling less guilty, I felt much happier too. One month old Alice was so so chilled, and slept through everything. 

2 Months 


13th July 2017


Oh my! I love these photos. 8 weeks old and already lifting her head up and loving tummy time. She's always been so active. A little squidy-er, sleeping through the night but a few less day naps. Two months is such a gorgeous age. They are smiling, recognising you and still having endless cuddles and chill. We had our first evening without her this month too, and she was as good as gold for her nan and pup. 


3 Months 


13th August 2017


Number three is my favourite! And probably my favourite age (three months and 10+ are my fav). She was the easiest she's ever been at this age. Sleeping through the night, every night, no matter where we were, having longer day naps, not on the go but slightly older so could be entertained by toys and things. So easy going and was just happy to be held. Oh what I would give to have a three month old again! We stayed away multiple times in August and it didn't bother her one bit. 

4 Months 







13th September 2017


Starting to really look like Alice now! That cheeky little face which hasn't really changed since...expressive/frowny brow, plump pouty lips, big blue deep set eyes and chubby little cheeks. Oooo I could eat her! Saying that, this milestone marked the start of a very difficult stage, which only properly finished at 9 months. The day we took this photo, Alice had her last set of jabs. She took them pretty badly and it took her forever to go to sleep that night, and then woke up in the night! Shock horror. Sleep regression and everything else regression happened from here onwards. She started waking up a lot, not napping as well. She looked cute as ever but the tiredness really kicked in with us. Plus she was crying more in the day. 


5 Months 


13th October 2018

These were taken on her first holiday, when we went to Norfolk with my parents. I was so happy to be having a week with extra pairs of hands to help with her. She was still sleeping next to us and we were giving her a lot of milk in the night for her multiple wake ups. But all is forgiven when they are as cute as they are at five months. She was starting to be so so excitable and active by this time, my dad even made up a song for her on holiday called 'kick those legs' because she was just so energetic. We gave her her first taste of food on her first day of being five months, baby porridge! She had little nibbles on our food too. 

6 Months 


13th November 2018

I loved six months! She really came into her own this month. Laughing, smiling, and attempting to sit up. We took her on her first flight at 6 months, to Mauritius! We must've been crazy...12 hours with a six month old. She was still pretty tiny too, only in 3-6 months, but I kinda loved having a tiny baby! 

7 Months 





13th December 2018

As you can probably tell from these crazily active pictures (what happened to the little thing that sat there posing ha!), month 7 was tough! We came back from Mauritius, had one night at home and then drove to the Lake District to meet my parents, where these photos were taken. She was going through a regression, but also jet lag/sickness bug etc etc meant one tired, grumpy baby who was up most of the night. New Years Eve at my parents and I'm sure I was up with her every hour of the night! I think she was desperate to crawl and sit unaided but couldn't so got frustrated. She also went through a fussy patch of not eating off a spoon!

8 Months 






13th January 2018


How pretty does she look here! I think these are my second favourite photos. Eight months old and I think we could see the light at the end of the tunnel, she was only waking up once or twice in the night, eating off a spoon and could entertain herself so much more. I remember our house was struck down with the standard January illnesses....between us all we were out for the entire month. The day we took these we were heading out for the first time in a while to the zoo, only for her to get ill again the next day. But we enjoyed all the sofa snuggles and this was when her obsession for Moana started. It's still her favourite film and the only one she'll watch the whole way through, although we don't let her watch too much tv because she gets a bit addicted! 

9 Months 






13th February 2018

9 months, the month she finally started sleeping through the night again and has done every since!! After 9 months it really did get easier. Full night sleep every night, two set naps a day (two hours in morning and two in afternoon), eating almost anything (apart from savoury pouches...she hates those!) , and sitting and crawling! Her hair started getting super long and curly this month too. We also took her to New York in February! Her second flight, and it went sooooo much better than the first. Yes it was shorter (nine hours) and we went premium economy, but she slept like a...well, a baby and behaved so well! She also got her first tooth the day before we went to New York and got her second one while we were there. 

10 Months 





13th March 2018

Her first bunches! And needed because that fringe is sooo long. Still loving her sleep, saying 'mama', 'dada', 'duck', 'dog' and had her third tooth come through. I went back to work in March and that was quite hard for me. It wasn't just the leaving her as I knew she'd be fine with my mum, but I was very emotional that our year was up! All that time it felt like we were in a little  newborn bubble and I'd never be going back, yet suddenly here I was but I wasn't quite ready! I got suuuuuper broody and hormonal around this time too. Luckily Alice didn't seem to notice and was still as happy as ever. 

11 Months 





13th April 2018

The cheekiest little face right there! Not much to say about month eleven, just that going back to work wasn't nearly as bad as I thought it was going to be, and Alice loves her time at my mums. She did start to get a little clingy of me since we started to spend a few days apart, but I think that just a developmental thing as she's already grown out of that and is happy to go to other people again. She did get really attached to her jellycat bunnies here too, hence having them in the photos, and used them to snuggle herself to sleep. Cute!

12 Months 



13th May 2018

One whole year of Alice! 4 teeth, standing, crawling, on the verge of walking. Saying Mama, Dada, Nana, duck, dog, cat and daisy. Still obsessed with Moana and sleeping like a champ! Two hour nap in morning AND afternoon plus 19:00-07:00 ish every night. Dreamy! 

Still a little cheeky terror though. Obsessed with everything she shouldn't be, the toilet, keys, the bin....and has a mini tantrum every time you tell her 'NO'.  Ooozing with personality already, and she can't even say a sentence. She's in love with her giant bunny and rugby tackles him to the floor every time she sees him. She's the perfect addition to our family and completely completes us, filling a part of our hearts we think were empty. 

Alice Ivy, we love you! 


Alice Ivy With The Flowers