Easter 2018 Edition
Welcome to the special Easter Edition of The Mum E-mag
I'm Debbie Lucas, founder and editor of The Mum E-Mag.
As a mum of two little ones and a pre/postnatal fitness instructor who chats to other mums regularly, I know how important it is for mums to share experiences and help each other along.
I wanted to create a place where mums could showcase their talents, tell their stories, give opinions, educate others,ask questions and find support.
I hope you enjoy it!
Find out more
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We have a great collection of articles and blogs for you to read covering a wide range of topics including Easter crafts and activities, ideas for getting your children outside and lots more...
Spring is (almost) here!
Easter is so much more than Egg hunts (although the excuse to eat chocolate is always welcome in my house). As I write this, the show is falling fast and the heating is on over drive, Spring is clearly not here yet but it’s on its way! I for one can’t wait to get outside and introduce my son to a new season that has so many opportunities to explore and learn.
Apart from the classic Egg hunts (which if you Pinterest you will find lots of fun adaptations of this) there are lots of activities you can do to get your child’s imagination souring. One activity that I can wait to do is the mystery of ‘Who pushed Humpty Dumpty?’ Set the crime scene with a chalked shaped egg (or a couple of cracked eggs on the ground) with some crime scene tape at the ready (you can find this very cheap on ebay). Let your child become detective to find out what really happened, you can create witness statements from characters, role play and investigate with evidence you place at the scene. Was it Jack in a fit of rage from his crown breaking when falling down the hill? Or was it Hansel and Gretal- if they had the audacity to eat a hard working witch’s house without asking, could they have been creating mayhem by pushing a poor defenceless egg in the hope it had chocolate buttons inside?
Spring is the perfect time to get out the house and explore our little community of bugs- a minibeast hunt is a must. Grab a magnifying glass and become a detective once more but this time exploring natures friends and learning about their habitats. Go for a walk in the woods telling your children ‘we are going on a minibeast hunt, were going to see some little creatures, what a beautiful day, we’re not scared’. Create a sensory tray of leaves, twigs and cones, take a colour wheel with you (easy to find online) and match colours to your findings. Create an insect house with branches and leaves or even make your own worm or butterfly house at home. If you’re a fan of messy play, create a sensory tub of green coloured cooked spaghetti with plastic insects hidden for them to find, develop their motor skills by using plastic tweezers to hunt for insects.
The hungry Caterpillar book is a great book to explore the butterfly life cycle and you can have a great time making food items from the book, creating patterns whilst making your own butterfly and learning about the life cycles as the story unfolds.
If you’re keen to focus on Easter related activities, enjoy making Easter egg pictures, using a potato masher as a stencil to dip in a mix of colours. Create a sensory tray of plastic eggs to hide things inside them or for an enhanced learning opportunity, write numbers or letters on the egg halves for them to find and match (number bonds, upper and lowercase letters). Happy Easter everyone and enjoy the Spring!
I set up Mum plus One because I’m on a mission to get mums more active!
As a mum of two little ones I know how important it is to be fit and healthy to keep up with them, but also understand how difficult it can be to find the opportunity to exercise properly.
I realised that exercise needs to be more easily accessible to mums and qualified as a pre/postnatal exercise instructor so I can run specialist classes that mums can bring their babies and toddlers along to. Some mums also bring their dogs to the walking class!
For mums who aren't local or can't get to classes I offer a Virtual Fitness Training scheme so they can workout with my support at home.
I also offer private fitness workouts to individuals and small groups in my area so mums can workout at home, either 1-2-1 or with their friends, without the need to travel far or disrupt their baby or toddler's routine.
Mum plus One is designed to provide you with fun and relaxed mummy-friendly workouts that will improve not only your physical fitness but also your mental well-being.
I'm now offering private fitness training sessions for individuals and small groups in the Sway area of the New Forest.
Why not get together with some friends for a private workout at one of your houses?
Take the hassle out of exercise and let me come to you!
It's perfect for busy mums or new mums who prefer not to disturb their little one's routine by going out!
Group fitness training
Minimum of 3 people per session, up to a maximum of 5 people.
£5 per person, per session, paid termly in advance.
1-2-1 fitness training
£20 per session, paid termly in advance.
Ideas to try this Easter...
There have been lots of good posts out there lately of crafts and activities to try with your little ones this Easter. I thought it might be helpful to gather together some of the links I've come across so they are in one place for you to navigate your way around as and when you have time. (Click on the links in the list below to view the articles).
Why not take a photo of anything you make or do and send it in to us to feature in our next edition? We'd love to see what you get up to!
Would you consider giving a gift
instead of an Easter egg?
Now Easter is becoming more commercialised there is at least one up-side,
you can find other lovely gifts instead of having to give chocolate!
Here are a few ideas:
Golden Egg Bath Bomb Melt @ £4.95 from Lush
Playground Chalk Eggs @ £4.99 from Amazon
Playmobil Gift Egg and Money Box @ £13.58 from Amazon
Lego Easter Bunny Toy Set @ £24.99 from Amazon
Hot Cross Bun Gin by Gin Tales @ £35 from Not on the Highstreet
Dress up a Rabbit Card by Clara and Macy @ £3.75 from Not on the Highstreet
Personalised Easter Rabbit Hunt Bag by Tilliemint @ £7 from Not on the Highstreet
We take breathing for granted; it is something we just do every day! But family life can be very busy and we might feel that we don’t have time to stop and take a break to meditate or re-energise. The good news though is that it doesn’t have to take more than a minute or even a few seconds to reboot, to boost yourself, to rescue yourself from a ‘panicked or stressful’ moment or avoid doing or saying something you will regret later on.There are huge benefits to thinking about and controlling our breathing:
- It slows us down and makes us feeling calmer.
- It grounds us to the here and now and makes us respond differently to the situation ahead i.e. the morning routine or homework etc.
- Helps with panic attacks: by slowing our heart down to a healthy level we can reduce anxiety.
- Defuses anger and negative emotions: when we check in with ourselves and think about how we feel we are more likely to control the feelings and respond differently than we might have done otherwise. We can be proud later on and know we are a positive role model for our kids to follow!
- De-stressing: we might have a lot on, but when we allow ourselves to stop for a while and only think about breathing we start to slow down, feel calm and less stressed!
- Makes us enjoy life around us: by feeling more connected to the here and now we are more likely to notice and enjoy life when we allow ourselves this pause. Example; when we are with our family we might start appreciating the small but important moments, words and smiles.
- Lowers blood pressure
Here’s how it works:
Stand or sit comfortably – relaxed and straight; like somebody has just taken your head and pulled it up. Now take a deep breath and relax into a comfortable position. Relax arms, hands, feet, shoulder, jaw, eyes etc.
Now just think of your breathing – nothing else; the cold air coming in through your nose and the warm air coming out through your mouth or nose. Take a BIG DEEP breath and think about how it comes down into your belly – a belly breath – and travels back up and out.
Check in with yourself: how are you feeling right now, BREATHE, how do you want to feel right now, BREATHE, ‘I feel stressed’, BREATHE, ‘I want to be calm’, BREATHE
In between the breaths try to create some positive self-talk to support your situation and what you are experiencing right now or about to do: I can deal with my children, they will not stay like this for ever – I am going to listen – I am an OK parent, that is good enough – I love my child – we had such a lovely time yesterday etc.
If thoughts pop into your mind other than breathing or positive self-talk (chores task, worries, dinner etc.) that is OK, it’s normal for the mind to wander, just notice this and say to yourself: Hmmm – STOP – think of your breathing and then continue with positive self-talk and feelings.
When can I use this skill?
From the ParentingSuccess Team
Little lives needing little journeys...
The Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Princess Anne Hospital Southampton cares for and retrieves sick preterm and newborn infants from around the Wessex region in the UK. The unit currently has 37 cots, with plans to expand! Every day there are sick babies who need to be transferred from the neonatal unit at Princess Anne Hospital across the road to our Southampton Children’s Hospital for specialist treatment or medical investigations.
We are currently fundraising for a specially adapted ambulance which can be used to transport sick or preterm babies. The ambulance will cost £120,000 to purchase, and we have already raised a phenomenal £70,000 from existing supporters of the unit through Southampton Hospital Charity. We are now desperate to reach our final target and use the ambulance for our youngest patients.
Freya Pearson (Lead Neonatal Consultant) comments: “This specialist ambulance will be a huge boost to the service and will make an enormous difference in the provision of care for hundreds of sick babies and their families every year. It will enhance the service we can provide by: ensuring that we spend less time making arrangements for these transfers · enabling us to provide a more streamlined service using our own staff who already know the babies and their families allowing us to continue to provide the full intensive care that the babies need from the unit and back. Amongst the many advantages provided by the new ambulance are the inclusion of specialist transport equipment, greatly increased storage capacity for medical gases, much improved electrical power to support specialist medical equipment, additional seating for family members or nursing/medical staff and the availability of a specialist transport vehicle ready for immediate departure for time critical intensive care transfers.
Thank you your support will make a difference to our babies and their families.”
To donate please click here to
visit the JustGiving page
Why I'm proud to be a middle-aged mum!
I have a confession to make: I’m a middle-aged mum. But just because I’m 41 doesn’t mean I’m not capable.
I have a very busy and fulfilling life. I have two toddlers at home, work two days a week and run a business teaching pre/postnatal fitness, host a fortnightly social group for mums and mums-to-be and offer party planning tips.
That’s not to say that everyone sees my age in such a positive light. When I was 39 and pregnant with my son I was medically labelled a ‘nearly geriatric mum’, and it felt such a derogatory term.
Of course, I had already considered what being an older mum would mean for my children; I’ll be in my mid-late 50s by the time they are thinking about leaving home.
When I was pregnant, I worried that I wouldn’t be able to cope and keep up with their demands over the years. Or that they’d be embarrassed (or worse, teased) at school. And what about school sports day? I didn’t want to be the old, unfit mum who couldn’t run in the parents’ race!
And how on earth would I be able to help with homework, when I left school decades ago and didn’t study the same topics or use the same methods of learning? Then there’s the whole keeping up with the kids thing. What do they like? What are the fads? Times have changed massively since I was a child in the 70s and 80s.
But after all that initial worry, I decided that it’s not your age but your attitude that counts. If you believe you can do something then you will. It doesn’t matter how old you are, you will find a way to make things work.
Anything you don’t know can be learned. The internet is an amazing tool for middle-aged mums to find out pretty much everything they need to know, be it business or child-related. You can keep up with everyone and everything if you find a little time each week to see what’s going on in your little bubble.
And in act, rather than age being a hindrance, I actually that being a little older means you bring more skills and knowledge to the table – a huge plus in my book.
Life experience counts for a lot when you’re bringing up children and trying to teach them good values. You have means and methods available to you that you’ve learnt through the years that you can draw on to help.
I personally have over 20 years of working in a blue chip world behind me, and that’s stood me in great stead for managing our hectic family life as well as working. It’s also helped me to deal with the inevitable daily stresses that nurturing a family and working can bring.
My age doesn’t affect how much I love my children, or how I show it to them. I can still give hugs and kisses, read bedtime stories and play games. It doesn’t affect my ability to be a working mum, or stop me from having dreams. I think middle-age mums rock and deserve a big thumbs up!
Let me know what you think. Are you a ‘nearly geriatric mum’ too? I’d love to hear your experiences.
Seasonal fashion - what's in this Spring?
This season's fashion is hitting the shops now and the current trends are florals and pastels.
I know pastels can be a little scary but there are some lovely colours out there and with a little careful matching to your skin tone and hair colour you can create a really fresh look. A couple of tricks to help make it work for you are to either stick to one pastel shade for your whole outfit or to coordinate it with a stronger colour such as navy. Mixing it with a darker colour also makes your outfit more 'mummy-friendly' so you don't need to worry about those grubby little fingerprints!
As the weather isn't particularly great at the moment another great trend is to layer your clothing. Why not try adding a vest top over a t-shirt to achieve a sporty look? Or, put a t-shirt under a shirt or blouse to add some colour in the neckline?
Spring is the perfect time of year to revamp your look. It doesn't have to cost a fortune. Look for a few key pieces that you can mix and match with other items you already have in your wardrobe. Clothes can be very versatile with a little imagination.
Just because you are a mum doesn't mean you don't deserve to look good and feel good. Take a little while to focus on yourself for a change and create the wardrobe you deserve!
Here are a few things I've found that you might like...
Thanks for taking the time to read this special edition of The Mum E-mag.
If you have any comments or feedback, please do get in touch as I'd love to hear from you.
Until next time, Happy Easter to each and every one of you!
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