May 2012

Sunny days at the lido

Yesterday my darling husband, little one & I spent the day at the lido basking in the gorgeous sunshine. I think the rest of Cheltenham was there too, so we might have bumped into each other.

We had a picnic, ice creams, dipped in and out of the (pretty freezing) water, and had an all round lovely day.

And while we were there I couldn’t help but sit back behind my sunnies and have a good old people watch. And with about 2000 sun crazed Brits to marvel at it was great people watching!

I have to admit, I felt a little bit self-conscious in my swim suit. I’d spent a few agonising moments wondering which one to put on….. did I feel brave enough for a cute patterned bikini from my last (pre-baby) holiday? Erm no. Insecurities about my mummy body surfaced and the safe black cossie won out. And even then I spent a lot of time pulling it up or down or fiddling with it to try and cover up, and wishing my complexion was less Twilight-esque.

There were a lot of gorgeous bodies to compare myself to as well. If anybody was looking for a bevy of taut tanned trendy young things yesterday, then they were at the lido. (Just sounded like my mum then!) They did a lot of loud laughing, muscle flexing, hair flicking and side ways glances at each other, while carefully pretending they weren’t interested at all.

But after a while of wishing I was thinner, blonder, browner, taller, younger, bustier and cooler I realised for every specimen of physical perfection there was at least 10 examples of normal pale wobbly bobblyness, pulling at their swim suits and looking a bit shy too.

And they looked like they were having way more fun……. Running about with their kids, giggling with their other halves, taking photos, eating chips and ice creams and relishing the amazing sunshine.

According to the jolly old met office we’ve only got a few more days of this, then it’s time for brollies and jackets again. So I hope you’ve had a wonderful weekend full of fun in the sun, and that for you pregnant ladies out there it’s not been too hot and your ankles aren’t too swollen (put them up, ankles higher than your hips, it’ll help).

Next time I’m at the lido I’ll waste less time feeling self conscious, and get straight down to the serious business of having a giggle with my little family and enjoying the bonkers British weather.


Next week: we are full of jubilee fever. Get in touch and tell us what you’re up to…..

Street parties? Fancy dress? We’d love to hear all about it.


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We always love to hear from you. Have a great week. x x


Mummy Midwife and the Olympic Torch

So, the sun is shining, finally, and today I have realised that that makes everything better! Everyone out and about seems happy and smiling, Kids running around in the park, babies with sun hats on and a lot ice creams on the go. Cheltenham town centre has gone into Olympic overdrive. There are flags, bunting and union jacks all over the place. It’s quite heart warming really. The town is eagerly awaiting the arrival of the Olympic torch on Wednesday, it is coming up from down south. Following a series of questions from my 4 year old regarding the torch and where it has come from including ‘why do they carry it because its not dark is it mummy?!’ I managed to bluff my way through the interrogation and it got me thinking…. This is actually a once in a life time event for me. It is highly unlikely that I will ever see the Olympic torch come to the UK again, my children might, but I won’t. I feel a bit sentimental about that, it has made me realise that a big part of parenting is educating and showing your children the world around you. Hoping that they will turn out to be balanced and happy adults.

So I am fully prepared for Wednesday, we have Union Jack dresses (for the four year old) Union Jack bib (for the baby!) Union Jack flag (for me) and most importantly the camera. So that I can capture the moment that the Olympic torch came to town and we all went to see it. I hope that when my little people are bigger that they will be able to look back with fond memories.

Thinking about Fun…. The Baby Journey are really proud to let you all know about our New Baby Workshops. They are held on the last Friday of every month at The Queens Hotel from 10:30 til 13:00. The next one is 29th June so if you have a baby under 6 months (or you know someone who does) then come and join us for what will be a fun few hours. We are including baby massage, first aid, fitness, yummy cake, tea/coffee and of course The Baby Journey magic duo!

Why not get in touch to find out more…… Have fun!

Maternity services where you are

This week The Baby Journey Mummy Midwives are pondering how you rate maternity care where you are.


You may have heard that The Royal College of Midwives is working hard on a petition calling on Parliament for 5000 more midwives in England in a bid to protect maternity services and give women & babies the good midwifery care they need.

If you’d like to sign it (and please do) then follow this link:


Meanwhile The Daily Mail this week reports on a study conducted by Bounty which suggests that 1:4 women report that they did not have a midwife with them when they needed one during birth, in London this figure was even higher, while in other areas it was less.


How did you feel? Or what have you seen or heard when friends and family have had babies?


Here at The Baby Journey HQ we know that we are very lucky, because we are midwives we had inside knowledge while we were pregnant and were surrounded by midwives and obstetricians at work. During the birth of my little one I felt very well supported by my fabulous midwives (it took two staff shifts for him to put in an appearance!). By the time he had arrived and it was time to move to the ward the delivery suite was very busy and I knew that all the team were rushing around looking after ladies, and handling urgent situations.


As midwives we know how quickly things change in the maternity unit – one minute it’s all calm and serene – the next minute it’s rushing about to deal with the unexpected. For all those of you out there who’ve seen One Born Every Minute (we all love it!) it’s plain to see that things can shift rapidly on the Delivery Suite.


What are your views? Did you feel like your midwife was there for you when you needed her? Or did you feel that you were alone when you needed someone most?


Midwives want to be there for women when they are needed in pregnancy and birth, that’s why we do what we do; but when there’s a lot going on we do have to spread ourselves thinly, and sadly are not always able to give the level of care we wish we could.


Let us know what your thoughts are.


Post here on our blog, join the conversation on Facebook at, or tweet us @thebabyjourney.

We’d love to hear from you.

Secrets of a Midwife Mummy (Second time around)

Jules and Oscar

The toddler was rapidly growing into a proper little girl and I had started to show some very noticeable symptoms of broodiness.

I was glazing over looking at baby clothes in shop windows, recalling stories of when my daughter was born and feeling emotional at the sight of a pregnant tummy, which as a working midwife was a hazardous occurrence.

“Right!” I barked at my wonderfully understanding husband, “it’s time for another one.” I think he thought all his Christmases had come at once.

I was pregnant within a few months, and I waited every day to feel as sick as I had done the first time around. I was pleasantly relieved to feel rather, umm normal?!

It became rather apparent however, that your second pregnancy shows earlier than the first, I felt that I looked very pregnant straight away, and this made hiding it from people quite tricky.

I really enjoyed being pregnant, my little girl would cuddle up and kiss the bump that she had decided was going to be her ‘boy sister’.

I had expected the pregnancy to be very similar to the first, but it wasn’t, it was better. I felt more energetic, I looked after myself and I didn’t put on as much weight, thank goodness Huffkins the bakery wasn’t open then!

When it came to the birth I had opted to have my baby in the midwifery unit at Cheltenham. My philosophy was get in there, push it out, get home and get on with being a mother to two. Luckily, my very punctual son decided to arrive at lunchtime on his due date, he doesn’t get his time keeping from me.

I had always wanted to have a waterbirth, having witnessed so many calm and wonderful births in the pool, so experiencing my waterbirth was really special. With some choice language and my husband cheering me on, our little baby boy was born. My midwife was truly amazing, encouraging and supportive, and instinctively knowing what I needed. I recovered well after his birth, and found it much easier second time round. I knew what to expect, how I wanted things to be and I was stronger in my decision making. We hit the ground running with number two, I think you have to, as you have another child that needs you to be just as you always have been, you are already a mummy.

So, what’s it like with two? Well it’s twice the washing, cooking, noise and stress levels at times, but it’s also twice the cuddles, kisses and precious little moments when your eyes mist over, watching the two most beautiful little faces you’ve ever seen.

I live by the mantra… ‘Life doesn’t throw anything at you that you can’t cope with’, and while it is hard being a parent, emotionally harder I think, it’s so rewarding and no matter what decisions you make for your children, as long as you have their best interests at heart, you can’t go wrong.


For more information and support in pregnancy and as a new parent check out what The Baby Journey can do for you from antenatal classes to new baby workshops and more……


What do you think?

We’d love to hear from you. Tell us your pregnancy, birth, baby stories, or just let us know what you reckon to all this.

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Go on, you know you want to…….