Tag Archives: Babies

17th April 2015

Everything You Need To Know About Shared Parental Leave

If you live in the UK, you may have heard about Shared Parental Leave (SLP) legislation, which came into force on 5th April 2015. This new policy gives eligible parents, partners, and adopters the flexibility to decide who will care for their child in the first year of its life – and when you think about it, it seems absolutely right that we should be able to choose who stays at home with our  own child.

The changes mean that maternity cover can be split between a mother and her partner or the father, giving them the chance to either take time off together to care for their child (beyond the current two weeks paternity leave that is currently available to fathers), or split the leave so that the mother can return to work, allowing the father or partner to spend additional quality time bonding and caring for their child.

And good news for those adopting a child – they are entitled to the same rights as other parents to Shared Parental Leave.

It sounds like an amazing piece of legislation, but quite confusing – but when I saw this infographic by Citrix GoToMeeting, it suddenly all made sense, so I thought you’d like to have a read too.

Shared-Parental-Leave-V3

In partnership with GoToMeeting.

Visit http://blog.gotomeeting.co.uk/



17th March 2015

Dear Dolce; you’ve got it so wrong

IVF Babies

Dear Dolce,

I am betting that you said that thing about IVF babies being ‘chemical’ and ‘synthetic’ to get noticed.

But even though I know (or hope) it’s just a publicity stunt, it annoyed me. So I thought I’d write you a letter to tell you why you’ve got it so wrong.

For those that haven’t yet read it, your silly, unintelligent comment was this: “You are born and you have a father and a mother. Or at least it should be like this, that’s why I am not convinced by chemical children, synthetic babies, wombs for rent.”

You directed your venom specifically at gay couples and they are rightly outraged – but the truth is, you have upset so many more.

My boys aren’t IVF babies, but they could have been so easily. There are currently estimated to be 5 million IVF babies worldwide (not all still babies now, of course, but you catch my drift).

And do you want to know how they differ to non-IVF babies? The first 3-5 days after conception, when a medical miracle means they begin their life journey in a different place.

Nothing else differs. Nothing. These babies are made of exactly the same stuff. And there is nothing  ‘synthetic’ or ‘chemical’ about a sperm meeting an egg.

After those 3, 4 or 5 days, these miracle babies are reunited with their mothers and they grow in her womb. And the irony is that the only bit they’ve missed out on is the bit where the non-IVF mother has absolutely no idea – NO IDEA – that she has a baby growing inside her yet.  So really, they have missed nothing at all.

And once that positive pregnancy test shows two lines, those babies grow in exactly the same way. They kick, they wriggle, they turn, they jump on her bladder, they cause fiery heartburn, they stretch her skin so that she remarks to her friends ‘I honestly don’t think this bump can grow any bigger!”  – and nine months later, they are ready to enter the world.

In the meantime, their excited parents allow themselves to share scan pictures with friends and family, shop for tiny little sleep-suits in the softest velour, and paint nurseries in shades of powder pink and soft blue. Just like every other parent waiting for their baby to make their entrance.

And when they are born, they scream with shock and anger to have left that warm, quiet sanctuary inside their mother’s womb. And during that moment (the same moment humans have been experiencing for thousands of years), they are placed on their mother’s chest and look up to meet her eyes for the very first time. And there is nothing more natural than that.

And if you think that a father’s love is any less powerful, any less intrinsic, I am sure you are wrong. I can’t vouch for it personally, but I have seen that love; I have watched it happen. And I am absolutely sure that a baby with two fathers is just as blessed from the very beginning.

And you think that absolutely natural, instant, and fierce love is chemical? Really?

You are not a parent, Dolce – but if are ever blessed, I know you would look down at those wrinkled hands, perfect pursed lips, and curls of damp hair and realise you screwed up big time.

Because every baby is the definition of perfection.



10th December 2014

Facebook Competition: Win a £30 Gift Voucher for the Essential One

IMG_1221_1Wow, how did that happen. It only seems like yesterday that I was celebrating Mum of Boys  reaching 4000 followers on Facebook – and here I am again, launching a competition to celebrate reaching 5000!

So to celebrate, I have teamed up with The Essential One to give away a £30 Gift Voucher for the lovely online store to one of my readers.

Screen Shot 2014-12-10 at 13.16.51I love The Essential One. In fact, I wish I knew about it when I was pregnant with Stanley, as I searched high and low for companies that sold a range of simple key items for babies. I didn’t want crazy patterns or colours, I just wanted simple, soft pieces that my newborn could wear – and then grow up with. The Essential One is exactly that, with the added bonus of very affordable prices points.

With its affordability and quality of the pieces, it’s also a great website to browse for Christmas presents. There are even some very cute Christmas baby outfits too!

Enjoy shopping – and good luck!

Enter the competition on Mum of Boys Facebook Page.

Shop The Essential One here.