16th February 2015.
I read this at the weekend and would recommend this article and the book. I so agree- we seem to have got so far away from foundational parenting and I meet so many parents who are afraid of upsetting their children. I am always saying- we are the ones as parents who need to put down loving boundaries -no one else is going to do it and it is all part of our responsibilty as a parent. Babies, toddlers and children thrive on loving boundaries. One of the first boundaries we put in is teaching our babies/toddlers to sleep well at night. xx
8th February 2015
You can now read a short piece I wrote about my time at an event in Dubai with a lovely organisation called Just Kidding. I talked on helping with babies' and childrens' sleep, the importance of flexible routines, as well as the best swaddling techniques. There's a great video Just Kidding shot of me available to view too!
8th February 2015
See below a good article on fussy children. I so agree that normally babies need to be started on solid food earlier than 6 months of age. This enables them to enjoy different flavours and textures before they start having protein, at the age of six months. They are then ready to start having more lumpy foods than just pureed. In my experience the later they start on solid food they can become fussy eaters.
7th February 2015.
Below is an interview I did yesterday with BBC Radio Ulster.....it is a funny interview about the barber in the USA who punished his son by giving him an "old man haircut"!
3rd February 2015
Below is a good article I saw in yesterdays paper...it is very true- it is so important for children to be allowed to take risks as they are growing up, as this is all part of life..
24th January 2015
I have had a lovely couple of days walking with friends. Yesterday a friend and I walked part of the east Devon coastal path, we had a good lunch in Otterton on our way home. Then today I have walked with a great group of lady friends from the church along the Tiverton canal for nearly 7 miles! My legs are feeling it tonight! Then afternoon tea with my lovely cousin Emma on the way home. The weather has been just wonderful with lots of sunshine even though a cold wind. Hope you are all having a good weekend too. I am back in the office on monday if you are wanting to get in touch. xx
15th January 2015
Last weekend we had a lovely couple of days in London, such fun and lots to see and to do. Just being away for two days seems like a real break. The weather has got colder and there has been snow on Dartmoor but we havent had any yet where we live. I didn't manage to get up on Dartmoor for a walk as I was doing a lovely home visit down in South Devon. Our dear old collie dog is very old and probably wouldnt manage Dartmoor in the snow anymore! I'm not sure how much longer he will be around for, so sad to think about him not being with us as he is a real family friend. I have had lots of calls this week from mums with little ones being very unsettled after the Christmas break....please do get in touch if this is happening to you and you need some help. x
7th January 2015
A very happy new year to you all. I do hope you all had a lovely christmas with your families and friends. Where does the time go to! I cant believe that I havent written a blog for 3 weeks now! Very often after the christmas break parents find that their baby or young child is not sleeping so well as he/she was. Often this is due to travelling or staying with grandparents or friends and little ones get out of routine. Do please call me if you are struggling with sleep issues and wanting some help or advice as to what to do to put it right. xx
12th December 2014.
A new report has come out this week linking women who breast feed to a lower chance of developing breast cancer later in life. We all know that breast is best, but I really feel this is more pressure on women when there is enough pressure to get everything right! Many women do successfully breast feed but many women struggle and some find it impossible to establish, for all sorts of reasons. One of the reasons I think women give up breast feeding is they dont have enough help in the early days after giving birth. Oh that there were more midwives/health visitors to have time to help mothers get a good start to feeding. Below is an article I read today......If anyone is reading this and needs help with breast feeding please do get in touch. xx
27th November 2014.
I have had a really good trip to Dubai, lovely to meet lots of new people and also to stay with my family. Lovely sunshine too! A big thank you to all of you who came to seminars and coffee mornings and the breakfast, please do get in touch with me now that I am home, if you are needing some help. The link to Dubie eye radio is just below. It was good to be on this show with Cecile, Rosie and Mike. xx
18th November 2014
I am having a great time in Dubai with seminars and home visits. I was on a radio show with 3 other professionals this morning, the link is below. If you are reading this and live in Dubai and would like a home visit please do get in touch with me, either through my website or email Joanne at email@example.com.
Also, we are having a breakfast at the Bystro restaurant and pastry house tomorrow morning at 9-30 local time.....do come along if you would like to join us. Cecile a local midwife will also be with us . She will be talking about feeding. I will be talking about having a flexible loving routine and also about sleep issues with babies and toddlers.
Here is the link below of St John's church in Yeovil. I will be there on tuesday morning at the toddler group and also in the evening. Do come along if you live near by. I will be talking about my work and also answering parenting questions.....it would be lovely to see you if you can come. xx
27th October 2014
Such a good article in the Daily Telegraph newspaper today by Dr Max Pemberton. Last week NICE decided that teachers at primary schools should provide tooth brushes and toothpaste and teach the children how to clean their teeth! Firstly this is not the job of the teacher, as if they dont have enough to do already, and secondly what a sorry mess we are in if parents are not teaching their children to clean their teeth. As I said last week on Twitter, surely this is one of the most basic parenting skills we teach out children.
24th October 2014
Have just had a lovely holiday in the Highlands of Scotland walking the hills and Lochs with a friend.....a wonderful part of the country to be. Tomorrow I am on my way home after a week in North Yorkshire with a family with second baby. We have had a great time together, baby doing really well, 4 weeks old , breast fed and in a lovely 4 hourly routine, he is sleeping very well too. I shall miiss you all when I leave tomorrow, lots of love and take care. xx
10th October 2014
Here I am presenting on Flexible Routine at the Mumsnet Bumpfest!
If you want to find out more about this, here is the full talk I gave at Bumpfest, I hope you find it useful:
And here is the full article I wrote for Mumsnet on this subject:
7th October 2014
I had a really good day in London with Mumsnet at their Bumpfest. It was very well organised and I had a good opportunity to meet lots of new mums and dads to be. Thanks to everyone who came to my session and for all the questions that you asked. Do get in touch if you are reading this and really struggling with issues with your baby or toddler with sleeping. Also if you are trying to get your baby to take a bottle and having difficulty do get in touch as I would be delighted to help with this. xx
5th September 2014
Below is a link to a new online magazine, called Motherland. I have written an article for their first edition do hope you enjoy it.xx
6th September 2014
See the website below, Mumsnet are having a Bumpfest in North London on the 27th September. I hope to be there all day and my session is during the afternoon. I shall be talking about having a flexible routine, how and why. Also the importance of sleep for new babies, and growing babies and toddlers. Do come along it would be lovely to meet you. xx
1st September 2014.
The article below points out how quickly mums are sent home from hospital after giving birth....the time spent in hospital seems to get shorter and shorter. I know we all want to get home after giving birth, but surely mums should be able to stay in until they feel ready to go home. Is it any wonder that so many mums have to go back into hospital with complications, either for themselves or for baby. xx
19th August 2014
Do read this great article below by Jemima Lewis. It is so refreshing to hear that some parents are still just letting their children get on with it, so to speak. When ours were young they would play outside for hours making their own games, climbing trees making camps in the garden. Now they are all adults they look back on it as a time of real freedom and fun. We were farming so we had to be careful that they didnt play near the farm machinery etc, but they grew up knowing that some places were out of bounds. Hope you are all enjoying the summer holidays. If you are struggling with getting your little one to settle or sleep well, do get in touch. So many children seem to wake so early this time of the year and not want to go back to sleep again....I am sure the light mornings has something to do with it..xx
13th August 2014
I read this article yesterday and was completely amazed that having a family has for some people become so unatractive that they hire someone for every part of parenting. The poor children who have this sort of parenting. One wonders what sort of hang ups they will have as they go into adult life. I wonder why these people actually have children as they are the ones who miss out on all those special times. We all know that parenting is exhausting at times but the good times certainly out weigh the difficult times. Hope you are all enjoying the summer holidays. xx
5th July 2014
We are having a wonderful holiday in the lake district, in a little cottage near Keswick. We have been able to go to several sessions at the Keswick convention and its been good to catch up with old friends. What wonderful weather we have been having, lets hope it continues now the school holidays are here again! xx
13th July 2014
We have had such a lovely weekend. Last night we had a great party and were able to be in the garden till after midnight as the weather was so beautifully warm. So good to have lots of lovely friends together, great fun. Then this morning we had a wonderful service at church, and this afternoon, a cream tea in the garden with our lovely daughter and son in law with Susie and her friend and little one. How important it is to be able to stop and enjoy friends and family, so often life dashes away with us and we dont make time for these precious occasions. xx
27th June 2014
Below are 2 links for radio interviews that I did yesterday. I was asked what I felt about giving children water instead of fruit juice on the dinner table. In the news yesterday a report came out giving advice to parents not to give juice at all to try to help the obeisity problem in the UK..
25th June 2014
Do take a look at this link below, it is such a lovely story and is such a wondeful example of how all children are precious, whatever their needs. How lovely to think that a little girl with Downs Syndrome is being used as a model for Sainsbury's stores. Do look at the video clip of Natty playing her guitar and singing happy birthday. Well done Natty....xxxx
23rd June 2014
My wonderful daughter in law jumped out of a plane in Dubai today for Frontline fashion. This is a charity set up by Melissa Gilgchrist Higgins, for helping those living in Haitai affected by the earthquake disaster in 2010. Well done Helen, you are very brave doing a sky jump! xx
Frontline Fashion: Helen jumps for Haiti – from a plane!!!!
6th June 2014
Do look at this article by Alison Pearson, it is very good and very balanced. I wrote about it on Face book and had some very cross mums reply! I do understand that not every one meets the right partner in their twenties and wants to settle down and have a family, but our bodies are better at having babies in our twenties and early thirties than in our forties and fifties. I also know that we have had more experience of life by the time we get to our forties, but our energy levels are definately not so great then as when we were younger. Also many women want to have a career first, there is nothing wrong with that, but putting marriage and having a family on hold for a career, may not be the right way round! xx
22nd May 2014
I saw this little peice in the paper on Tuesday and thought it was so good. Wouldnt it be great if all our children were able to take risks as they were growing up. We have been so overprotective of our children in recent years and I am sure that risk taking sensibly, is all part of preparing our children for adulthood. xx
14th May 2014
Last week I flew to Edinburgh to be with a lovely family for three days with their beautiful 3 month old baby. It was so good to be in Scotland again, how I love the countryside and the people too. Its so rewarding to work with a family even just for a few days and see the baby settle so quickly......thank you to you both for having me! xx
5th May 2014
Last week I did several Radio interviews on two different subjects. One was as below on potty training. I was talking to Vanessa Feltz on Radio London. Then on Friday I was interviewed on BBC radion five live about some advice the NAHT have bought out. This was telling parents that they need to say I love you to their children several times a day. How sad that parents need to be told this and of course when we do tell our children this we need to make sure that we act it out as well and that we are genuine and not just saying the words. Today BBC breakfast called to ask if I could go on the show tomorrow to talk about babies and toddlers crying and the effect this has on parents. I would have loved to do this but I am off to scotland tomorrow for three days work...which will be lovely...so maybe next time! Hope you've all had a good weekend. xx
Do read the link below as it makes interesting readingl. I am wondering if parents are so taken up with Life that they dont have time to teach their children some of the most fundamental skills in life. We all know that many children when they start school have accidents and go home with wet pants or need their pants chnaged at school. When children start school it may be so overwhelming for them that they dont want to use the school toiilet or they are too busy to go and do a wee.....but we know they usually settle down quickly and this phase passes. But for a child not to be potty trained at all by the age of five is surely going to be difficult for this child when starting school. Please do get in touch with me if you are struggling with this issue and need some help. So often it can be sorted very quickly. Yesterday I was asked to talk about it on BBC Radio 5 live. xx
24th April 2014
I had a wonderful time in Dubai last month, staying with my family who have been living there for 8 years now. It is always lovely to spend time with them as they only usually come home once a year. I want to introduce you to a lovely friend called Joanne who lives in Dubai and did a wonderful job setting up seminars for me and home visits to Mothers who were wanting help and advice. Joanne came to me last year for advice for her baby, George. She had been using the Baby book and came to a seminar I took. She wanted to help me set things up in Dubai so my last trip was organised completely by Joanne. If you live in Dubai and want to get in touch with her, here is her email address. firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you to all who came to the seminars and to all the lovely families I visited while over in Dubai. I am hoping to come back again and visit in October November time, but I will keep you posted on my website. xx
4th March 2014
I am so looking forward to going to Dubai next week. The seminars are now on the front page of my website. Please do come along to any of these venues if you can. I shall be doing home visits while I am there and will also have copies of all my books. I am so looking forward to staying with my family and catching up with them all again.xx
20th February 2014
This article from the Times newspaper on parenting is excellant, every parent needs to read it as it is so true. Hope you enjoy it! xx
Below is a very good article by Alex Proud....how true it is, we need to let our children be children while they can be.xxx
6th February 2014
I have just done an interview with BBC radio, the Mark Forrester show on co-sleeping and what my views are. I wouldn't recommend it as babies can suffocate easily when sleeping between parents. Also it is good for babies to be in their own cots and learn to sleep well and for parents to have time together without baby. At present it is quite fashionable to co-sleep and I do believe we will see this pass and it will be the norm for babies to sleep in their cots again. xx
5th February 2014
A big thank you to all the mums, dads, grandparents and childcarers who braved the stormy weather today and came to toddler group. It was lovely to see you all...hopefully the weather will be better next week! xx
30th January 2014
Here is an interesting link to an article on table manners.....maybe I'm very old fashioned but surely there is nothing wrong in teaching our children to sit up to the table and have good manners. I believe this will stand them in good stead for life. Surely we want our children to behave well when we take them out to restaurants or friends houses as well as when we are at home. Also I think they will enjoy meal times so much more if they know how to behave well at the table.
3rd January 2014
A very happy new year to everyone. I do hope you all had a lovely christmas and are enjoying the new year and have not been too affected by the terrible storms and floods we are having. Do contact me through my website if you have babies or young children who are not sleeping well. Very often this happens if you have been away for a few days and your little ones have got out of their routines. Dont worry as usually these issues can be put right quite easily...so do get in touch if you are having problems. xx
26th November 2013
I cant believe it is so long since I wrote anything on my website. We have had a very sad time in our family over the past four months. My dear younger brother who was 59 passed away at the beginning of november with stomach and pancreatic cancer. He suffered so much in such a short time, but was so very brave and never complained. It has made me realise how important sibblings are to each other and in fact each family member, as we supported and continue to support each other in our grief. What a blessing families can be to each other when we go through the tough times in life. As I speak to groups of parents around the country and abroad I am always saying that if you have family support it is a real blessing. xx
26th October 2013
Here is a link to an interesting article....how sad that parents now need to be taught how to let their children have a good time running around outside. Hope you all have a good half term and enjoy some time out with the children.xx
17th October 2013
Below is a link to an interesting report on sleep issues with older children. Today I have been chatting to Charles Adler on his canadian radio show about children who dont sleep. We tend to think it just happens here in the UK but it is pretty world wide in developed countries. Do get in touch with me if you are having sleep issues with your baby or young children. xx
3rd October 2013
Yesterday I read a good piece that Carol Vordeman had said about babies and designer clothes. She is so right, babies do not need designer clothes they need love and cuddles. Babies have no concept of what they are wearing, designer clothes will not make them better sleepers or be more contented babies, my guess is it just makes mum feel good! xx
26th September 2013
I see in the news today that 200,000 mums are being forced back to work because of cutbacks in child benefit. What does this government think it is doing putting more pressure on mums who are already under pressure. Is it any wonder that break down in family life is so high in this country, how very sad it all is, surely it is time something was done about this. xx
11 September 2013
Interesting article in the Daily Telegraph yesterday on baby food in jars.....saying that they have half the ammount of goodness in them compared with home cooked food. I have always felt this with jars and there is nothing like home cooked food for babies and toddlers.....but if you have been out all day and are running late there are some very good baby foods that are on the market today, which will be just as good for your toddler. xx
9th September 2013
If you are struggling with toddler tantrums and a cranky toddler do buy the Toddler book as there are lots of tips for the toddler years. If you are struggling with sleep issues with your baby or child then Sleep solutions is probably for you, this deals with issues of sleep from birth to five years. It is so easy to get completely sleep deprived and not be able to make decisions with a clear head. Do get in touch with me through my website if you are struggling as so often it is quite quick to teach little ones to sleep well. xx
29th August 2013
Do read the article below it is interesting reading.xx
23rd August 2013
There was an interesting piece in the Times newspaper yesterday on swaddling. A mother had taken her four week old swaddled baby to the clinic, and was sternly told off as it is apparently against health professional guidlines. She also has a note on her file that she is swaddling her baby against professional advice and is willing to put her baby's life at risk by so doing. I was outraged to read this as we have been swaddling babies for years and done in the right way it is perfectly safe and enables babies to sleep well and feel settled and secure.. This is just another thing to make mums feel guilty and inadequate. I do hope this sort of nonsense will go out as quickly as it has come in. xx
14th August 2013
Do get in touch with me if you are having trouble with feeding or sleeping issues with your new baby, I notice that some hospitals are trying to send mums home even earlier after birth. I know that home is often the best place to be but sometimes mums need a day or so in hospital where they can get help and advice and hopefully some rest. xx
6th August 2013
Below is another link that is worth looking at. Why is it that mums who choose to stay at home with their babies and toddlers often get a raw deal, Surely it would make sense for the government to give them vouchers to look after their children, so encouraging mums who want to be at home to be able to do so.
4th August 2013
Sorry its been such a long time since my last blog .....where do the days go to! I hope you've all been enjoying the wonderful summer weather we have had, what a treat and how lovely for families to be able to get out and about with the children . Below is the link to a very good article that was in the paper yesterday, somehow it makes a lot of sense. xx
17th June 2013
Do come and visit the Brighton baby expo on sunday 30th June. I will be there and would love to see you. There will be lots of opportunities for chatting about parenting issues. Hope to see you there! xx
29th May 2013
Had a really good day today, I have been in Bristol doing some filming for a British TV channel that will be shown in September......I will let you know more when I know more details.xx
29th May 2013
Here is the link to the Brighton baby expo where I will be taking part on June 30th.....please do come and see us if you can. xx
There has been a report today on co-sleeping which is very good.xx
I read today that Kirstie Allsopp says " why should dad sit up with mum in the night when she breast feeds, as you dont want both parents shattered". Very good advice, I am always saying this especially if dad is back at work. Sometimes mum needs the support of dad in the night, but if she doesnt then its good that dad gets a good nights sleep. If you are reading this and having trouble getting your baby or toddler to sleep then do get in touch with me. xx
22nd April 2013
Do come to Clyst heath primary school at Kings heath Exeter on friday 26th April at 8pm. I am speaking about my work and giving advice to parents for babies and young children. There will also be an opportunity for you to ask questions . We would love to see you there.xx
5th April 2013
Here is the link for the Charles Adler show. This is a canadian radio station and last night I did an interview with Charles. It was regarding a report thats come out saying it is good for children to be bored from time to time and just have time to be. It was a very good report and I so agree that children do need to have time to just "smell the daises".
1st April 2013
I do hope you have had a lovely Easter weekend inspite of the cold weather. We are having a wonderful time with our family who are home from Dubai....as always so good to spend time with them. Today we went for a long walk on Dartmoor and it was absolutely freezing but great fun! If you have children at home on holiday from school enjoy the rest of the holidays.xx
26th March 2013
I have just watched the second episode of Bedtime Live, I missed the first one. It is very interesting to see Tanya's methods and to see families run ragged with children who dont sleep. I have been working with families for many years with sleep problems and find that once parents put some boundaries in with their little ones that the methods work very quickly. If you are struggling with sleep deprivation as a parent and dont know what to do please do get in touch and we can very quickly get it sorted out.xx
16th March 2013
I was glad to see this week that Professor Tanya Byron has spoken out saying "we are in the midst of a sleep deprivation crisis that is harming our children and young people". I so agree with this as I speak to so many parents who are having problems with their babies and toddlers with sleep issues. But please dont be put off if this is you as there is always something that can be done. So, please please do get in touch with me if you have little ones that are not, or who have never slept. I always say it is never to late to teach them. Most of the consultations I do either by phone or home visits is all to do with sleep. If babies and young children do not sleep well then very often they have eating and behaviour problems as well. If you want to comment on this do follow me on FaceBook on Rachelsbabies.
9th March. Had a lovely day at home sorting things out I hadnt managed to do during the week. Also found a great recipe for lemon cakes in the British hen welfare trust magazine, they are delicious, dont think they will last long in the tin! xx
Thanks to Anna for writing a good article in the Exeter Newspaper Express and echo. Not sure what the link is but hope you can find it. I have done an interview with Mother and Baby mag all about sleep for babies and children. It wont be out for a week or so yet. Also have done an interview with the Mail on sunday today that wont be out for a few weeks yet either.
7th March 2013
We had a great book launch in Exeter last week with over 100 people coming to give their support. It was lovely to see so many friends I hadnt see for a long time. Thank you to everyon for coming . Do follow me on Facebook on rachelsbabies if you wish
I had a good flight back from Dubai last night and it is lovely to be home even though it is 25 deg cooler here than Dubai! It was lovely to be with my family again and I am missing you already. Thank you to all you mums who came to my seminars some of you coming more than once! Thank you for all your contributions you made during the question times we had. Also it was good to do several home visits while I was with you. Do be in touch if you need me. I am finding that skype works well to speak to clients overseas. Hope to be back before too long! xx
Thank you to all the mummies who have come to my two seminars at Just Kidding in Dubai over the last two days. It was great to meet you all and some of you came twice......so glad you found it helpful. Thank you to Tanya who organised it all and lots of home visits as well. I am off to Abu Dhabi in the morning to meet mums there at a seminar organised by DbBabies. Looking forward to meeting more mums in the morning.xx
I'm all packed up and ready to fly to Dubai tomorrow to be with my family for 10 days. Cant wait to be in the lovely warm sunshine again! I have a busy week with lots of different seminars organised by two stores, Just Kidding and Ddbabies. I am so looking forward to meeting you all.....do book in if you want to come and havent booked yet. See you all soon.xx
Here is a link to the National article yesterday: This is a newspaper in Abu Dhabi and Dubai.
I was on the Steve Wright show on Radio 2 this afternoon...you can listen to it here! Thanks Steve for having me on, and thanks to Janey Lee Grace ...it was good to meet you all. xx
January 29th 2013
A very good day ending with a live interview with Charles Adler from Canada. You should be able to hear it here.
January 29th 2013
Very exciting - all the work I have been doing promoting my new book 'Sleep Solutions' is finally beginning to pay off and I'm in the Independent today! http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/health-and-families/features/should-we-cuddle-babies-or-leave-them-to-cry-8470338.html?google_editors_picks=true
Look out for further press coverage over the next couple of weeks. xx
Thank you Lucy for putting all the details of my new book Sleep solutions on my webiste, it looks really good. Sleep is so important for us all and so many families really struggle with settling their babies and young children. If you are having problems do contact me through Lucy. More often than not just half an hour on the phone can help you to put things right. Have a good weekend. xx
Just home from London and today I met Steve Wright and Janney Lee Grace at the BBC. I did an interview with them on my sleep book that you should be able to hear on 31st January sometime from 2-5 pm. xx
I am in london this week doing lots of different interviews for my new sleep solutions book that comes out on friday 18th. Do look in the Independant newspaper tomorrow as there should be an article about the book. I will keep you posted on other publications as they come out.xx
January 7th 2013
A very happy new year to everyone, I hope you've all had a lovely christmas. We had a wonderful time in Dubai with family and also meeting lots of lovely parents at events laid on by Jenny and kate .My next book "Sleep solutions, quiet nights for you and your child" will be out next week, so do look out for it in the shops or buy it direct from the publishers. I hope it will be a really helpful guide to those of you who have sleep problems with your little ones. It covers the ages from birth to five years. xx
A big thank you to Jenny who organised a great morning in Abu Dhabi for me with lots of lovely mums and dads and their little ones,. We met in Jenny's beautiful shop Dbbabies. Thank you to all of you who came, hopefully see you all again before too long.xx
I read this week that British infants own an average of 56 outfits! When you see what is on offer in the shops maybe this fact is true. Maybe we have got our priorities wrong!
I believe it’s good for babies to sleep somewhere different during the day, to distinguish night-time from daytime. If you have a pram or buggy, by all means put your baby to sleep there during the day. I’m a great believer in taking babies for walks during the day if possible: babies love motion, whether in the pram or the car, and this can often help them to settle off to sleep. Young babies should not sleep for long periods in a bouncy chair or a car seat on a regular basis, as is not good for their backs.
If you have a garden that is fenced and safe for you to leave your baby in, then she can have her daytime naps there, as the fresh air is good for her. If she is well wrapped up, it’s fine for her to sleep outside even in the winter; however, it’s useful to have a rain cover for the pram. It’s also a good idea to have an insect net for summer days.
Babies are much more comfortable when tucked down in their buggy or pram, and will have deeper sleep, than lying in somebody’s arms. However, don’t worry if your baby falls asleep in your arms now and again. It’s a good idea not to let this become a habit though, as it can make it more difficult to teach her to settle herself. Never go to sleep with your baby on your lap on the sofa, as once you are asleep you will not be aware of your baby’s movements.
In the first two weeks of life, your baby can sleep in the living room during the day, even if there is quite a bit of noise. As she gets older I would usually advise that she sleeps in another room, so that she will not be disturbed and you don’t have to tiptoe around her.
Many babies will be unsettled during the evening and this is often called colic. Normally it is not colic, just a time when they need to air their lungs and be wakeful, This is particularly true if they are sleeping well between feeds for the rest of the day. Babies often need to have one time of the day when they are wakeful, and unfortunately this is usually in the evening just as parents are sitting down to supper.
How long has your baby been awake?
It's important to remember how long your baby has been awake, as this will help you to know when she's ready for sleep. Babies can get very overtired from being handled too much and passed around for people to hold, particularly in the first two months of life. Your baby can be overstimulated and then become very awake and aware of noises and things going on around her. At this point it can be difficult to get her to settle, so try to make sure she doesn't get to this stage. Bouncing or jumping your baby on your lap can also overstimulate her, so try not to do this before sleep. This doesn't mean that you, your friends and family can't have lots of cuddles and contact with your baby; just be aware that she may become overtired very quickly.
Physical signs of tiredness
Sometimes older babies will begin to close their eyes and doze between periods of crying, and you then know that they are ready for sleep. When your baby is tired he may rub his eyes and yawn, and when he is put in his cot he will often turn his head away from you or from whatever is going on. At this point he just wants to switch off. He may also crawl up to the top of his cot to sleep.
Follow my blog entries about sleep issues.
Many parents seem to have problems helping babies and young children to sleep nowadays. How often have you heard friends or family say that they are walking around the house at night to get their baby to sleep, or driving him round in the car to help him to settle? This usually stems from a lack of good advice for parents in training thier newborns to sleep well. As parents, you are often advised to pick your baby up and feed him every time he cries, which can make it extremely difficult to get a good sleeping pattern going. It is a myth that having a baby will mean you don't get any sleep for the next three years. Babies need sleep in order to grow and develop, and they really can't have too much sleep; in fact they thrive on it.
Babies who are taught to sleep early on will be happy and contended and will generally grow up to be good sleepers. Importantly, parents also need sleep! It is important to form good sleeping habbits in the first few months of life to help your baby age, a baby with good sleep habits should regulary sleep through the night for at least twelve hours.
Understanding the difference between cries
Understanding your baby's cries is a learning process as you get to know her. It may take a while for you to understand different cries. Her cry for food will be different from her cry when ready for sleep. A cry for food will be much more desperate; in fact, she may be inconsolable and it will be difficult to quieten her. She may also suck her fingers or hand. The sleep cry will usually not be so desperate; she may well suck her fingers, but for comfort rather than hunger, as she will be longing to be put down for a sleep. Babies often make little noises in the night as they drift in and out of sleep, and this is quite normal.
Tips on 'sleep for toddlers'.
All toddlers under the age of 2 need to have a nap in the day and so do you!
Thursday 1st March
Congratulations! Sammie Browning has won the free half hour consultancy with Rachel. Look out for the next competition/offer in the next few weeks.
Saturday 18th February
I so agree with Dr Julie Wray of the school of nursing and midwifery. She says in todays Daily Telegraph that many new mums are turned out of hospital too soon after the birth of their baby and left to cope on their own. Many mums I speak to feel the same and say they have given up breast feeding as there was very little help in hospital and they were sent home so soon. Also many mums are sent home with their babies who havent even been bathed! I know mums dont want to be in hospital for longer than is necessary but it would be good if their was some system whereby new mums were taught how to care for and feed their babies when they get home. The midwives do a brilliant job but just have too much to do.
Friday 17th February
What do I give him? Baby rice and pureed fruit or vegetables is a good start. Just a little baby rice, a teaspoon full, then mix in some fruit or veg that has been cooked and pureed and some breast or bottle milk to make it a custard like consistency. Give this in the morning at his 10-11 a.m feed and after about a week give some more at around 5 pm.
Tuesday 14th February
How do I know my baby is ready for solid food.......when he starts waking early for feeds and is not satisfied. He may start waking in the night or around 4 a.m when he has been sleeping well. When he is opening his mouth like a little bird when he see you feeding! Also when he around about 14lbs in weight, usually a baby will be ready for some solids in his diet.
Friday 10th February
Have you seen a brilliant article written by Judith woods this week in the Daily Telegraph on wednesday 8th feb. It is called Knickers to the nappy curriculum and is about pushy parents and their children. It is so true that there are parents who fill their childrens days with activities that these little ones are often not ready for. Huge pressure seems to be on for under school age children to excel in things that not many years ago little ones had not even heard of! Yes, please let our children be children while they can be, there is enough pressure on them when they get to school anyway. Thank you Judith for your common sense article hopefully many parents will read it and take note!
Tuesday 31st January
Hello to all my friends and supporters of Rachels Babies! These winter months can be tough so to cheer you up I am offering a free ½ hour telephone consultation for one lucky person - giving them advice/help with their baby/toddler. All you need to do is ‘Like’ my page and then ‘Share’ it with your ‘Friends’. Find the 'Like' button on my homepage. I will then randomly select a winner from the ‘Likes’! Winner to be announced at the end of February. Rachel xx
Tuesday 17th January;
Here is the link to the interview I did on Premier Radio, www.premier.org.uk/ingoodcompany hope you enjoy!
Saturday 24th December
A very happy christmas to you all and I hope you all have a lovely time with your children and families. As from today we are told it is perfectly ok to swaddle our babies, apparently this is the first time this advice has been given since the 1950's !!!! What a surprise ! We all know how much better babies sleep if they are swaddled, but now it is official! Will be in touch again in the new year
Sunday 18th December
I am a great believer in swaddling, to swaddle baby and tuck her down flat in her pram or cot.
Thursday 15th December,
It is important for baby to lay flat on her back to get the best sleep, rather than sitting up in a car seat, which can be bad for her back
Wednesday 14th December,
A newborn baby won't sleep if they are hungry! so how do you know if they are? If breast feeding it's a little harder to tell, however make sure you feed baby on both breasts and check if baby is routing or moving head from side to side, or putting hands in mouth after a feed, this is a sign she is looking for more! if baby is bottle fed you can see how much she has had.
Tuesday 13th December,
I will be giving some useful bitesize points on 'sleep' with newborn babies over the next few days.... if you would like more information please refer to The Baby Book.
For a newborn baby it is vital that she has 16 hours sleep in a 24 hour period, during the first few weeks.
Thursday 8th December,
In the Telegraph on Saturday last week there was a good article by Rose Prince about food allergies in children. A study has been done at Kings College London on the benifits of giving children small amounts of food that may cause an allergy in order to build up their immune system against the particular allergy. This makes great sense as it seems we have become paranoid about not giving our young children certain foods, therefore so many children don’t have any immunity against allergies. Of course I know there are children who have very real reactions to certain foods, and these need to be taken seriously. Rose also goes on to say how fashions change so quickly ,one moment you are told to breast feed for 6 months, the next told to wean at 3 months. Is it any wonder that mums are lost in the muddle of advice they are given. Sadly it is often advice that has lost the ability to stick to common sense
Tuesday 29th November,
Date for your diary!
Sunday December 18th at 8pm on PREMIER RADIO.
Rachel is interviewed by Jeff Lucus and Ruth Dearnley and will be talking about her work and giving general advice on parenting. Not to be missed!!!
Tuesday 22nd November.
This is the time of year when Bronchiolitis is prevelant in babies and young children. I have seen this in babies aged from about 1 month old over the past few years. It is a horrid condition and babies can deteriorate quickly. The signs are; baby has a cold and maybe a cough, she doesnt want to feed, she can become listless and just wants to sleep. Her breathing can become heavy and her body can become a blueish colour. Often the first sign will be a nasty cough that sounds like croup. You do need to see a Doctor quickly , as sometimes babies are hospitalised and given oxygen. This condition affects babies and young children from November to March.
Monday 7th November
I see a study has been done in South Africa about the stress to newborn babies when taken from their mother at birth and put in a cot. I understand that all babies are given straight to mother after she has delivered, and put to the breast to feed, unless they are premature and needing special care, so not sure how this report has been done. It is interesting that this study has been done in South Africa where I guess many babies naturally stay with their mothers as this is culturally acceptable. As we in the west in the main, dont sleep with our babies and children, I hope this report wont bring more guilt and worry to parents who in my view are already overloaded with things to worry about! Dont let this report make you go into a spin and feel you need to have all your children sleeping in bed with you!
Wednesday November 2nd
At the weekend there was a very interesting article in the Daily Telegrah newspaper on smacking, written by Christopher Wakling. On thursday evening a new BBC tv series starts called The Slap. I wonder how much negative reaction there will be to this as we as a nation now live in a culture where there are little or no boundaries found in parenting. I wonder if some of the reasons for the riots in August came about because those who were resposible, had never had firm but loving boundaries given to them as they were growing up.
Friday 28th october
Hi everyone, sorry Ive not been in touch for a while, guess lots of you have been busy with 1/2 term this week. I have seen quite a bit in the press recently about parenting for families. I can do ante natal classes in your area to help you with baby, feeding,breast and bottle, and the big one Sleep! Do let me know if I can help in any way
Monday, 10th October
Interesting article in yesterday's Observer entitled 'Breastfeeding can boost social mobility, experts tell ministers'. Apparently the government is urged to act on new research that shows the importance of a baby's early weeks to success in later life. Dr Emilia Del Bono, an economist at the Institute of Social & Economic Research said "There seems to be evidence of benefits of breastfeeding in relation not just to health - which are already widely known - but also, and perhaps more controversially, in the cognitive, emotional and behavioural domains. There is a strong argument that the government should include breastfeeding on its list of social mobility indicators." Interesting stuff! Del Bono also commented that whilst it is good that hospitals promote breastfeeding, mothers need continued encouragement to carry on breastfeeding in the longer term.
Saturday 8th October
This past couple of weeks I have spoken to lots of mothers feeling very upset about their childs behaviour now he/she has started at school. They are dealing with tantrums and bad behaviour, and children not sleeping well at night. It is very normal for young children to be very good at school and come home and go into meltdown ! It is often related to being very tired. Do call me if you are having problems such as these.
Friday 7th October
Well this week I have started writing my book on sleep.....what a subject.....and how vital sleep is to us all! Do let me know if you have any stories on your babies or childrens sleep patterns.....I would love to hear from you. Just get in touch with Lucy
Have a lovely wknd.
Tuesday, 27th September 2011
You will have seen the recent news articles about 'The Erosion of Childhood' which made some pretty sad reading. I agree with much of what was said that our children have too much too soon in terms of consumerism, media gadgets and not enough family time and outdoor activities. It seems we have perhaps lost our way with regards to parenting in the UK. This is an area I am passionate about and desperately keen to help families with. How important it is that the boundaries which we give in parenting are laid down in the early months of a child's life in order to establish a stable, loving and secure family environment where children can thrive and flourish.
Don't forget you can get in touch with me if you are having problems with any issues relating to your babies and children - for example, bad behaviour, eating problems, sleep issues, breast-feeding, maintaining a routine, I am here to help!
This is such a big problem area for many families today who struggle with broken nights due to children not sleeping. Being a childcare expert I spend so much time advising parents on how to get their babies and children to sleep through the night. Lack of sleep is so destructive to family life - so please do contact me if you need some help.
Saturday 13th August 2011
"Why won't my baby sleep at night?" is so often the cry from new exhausted parents. A baby who won't settle at night seems to disrupt family life much more than if he won't sleep in the day. Sleep is so important to us all and we can't operate and function properly without it. The most important thing for a new baby is feeding and sleeping, a baby who is hungry or over-tired will not sleep. So, firstly make sure baby has been fed really well, as I say, tanked right! Change his nappy at some stage during the feed, then when he has been up for long enough, about an hour, then he needs to be tucked down in his cot or pram. Very often babies will be fretful and a little unsettled while they are dropping off to sleep, this is quite normal, and if left to settle themselves they should then sleep well until the next feed.
This is just a rough guide, do get in touch with me through Lucy whose details are here on my website (email@example.com) if you have any problems with your baby or child not sleeping.
My consultancy service works very well and I will try and get in touch with you immediately. My service is very personal and we aim to respond within 24-48 hours.
Thursday 11th August
I just want to reassure those of you who have given your babies cows milk before they are a year old that this is perfectly ok. A report has come out to say that cows milk is too salty, but if your baby has been breast fed and you are weaning him/her and he/she wont take formula, cows milk is perfectly ok for him/her. So rest assurred !
Monday 1st August
I have just seen a report on demand feeding, carried out in Australia that babies who are demand fed end up with healthier weights. I have found that babies who feed regularly put on weight well and also are very settled and sleep well. Surely this is what we all need!
Rachel says July 2011
On monday 4th July afternoon come and ask me questions on facebook on this address from 3pm till 3-45. http://www.facebook.com/askamum.
Dont forget you can contact me through my consultancy service if you have any questions you wish to ask. I speak to lots of parents with babies and young children with sleeping issues.
Rachel says June 2011
Good for Tilly Beazeley who has patented a food masher called a weanie . Tilly has apparently sold 120.000 of these `wean machine’s`. This is a plastic gadget that you take with you when you go out for meals, and either mash the food you are having or take your prepacked food with you and mash it for baby there and then. Mashing does’nt destroy the fibres like blending does. How good to see some sense with feeding baby the food we have, like we always used to do! So good for baby to have different flavours and textures, from the age of six months they can eat most things within reason that we as adults eat. Apparently the makers of convenience baby food are worried as they think this may take on and they will loose out!
Rachel says May 2011
Hope you like my new look website, hopefully more info and lots of blogs !
Praise For Rachel
"Rachel’s flexible yet structured routine was just the thing for our daughter…Rachel’s advice on everything from breastfeeding to parenting was invaluable."
"Rachel Waddilove offers essential advice on the toddler years, on everything from potty training to the all-important sleep!"