Thank you to the dads who make us who we are

Father's Day, Gary Pearson, Sonny Jim

#DaddyandSonnyJim

I can’t imagine anyone will have missed the fact that tomorrow is Father’s Day.

Hardware stores must do their best business in the first weeks of June and sales of bacon probably go up as fry ups are prepared.

But too often the role of daddy is seen as secondary to mummy, surplus to requirements in many ways when it comes to parenting. And admittedly, some dads ARE rubbish. Those mamas, single-handedly doing both the job of mum and dad, are nothing short of heroes in my book.

Yet there are a lot of good uns. And the most important thing they ever do, is just be there. Whether it’s a snatched kiss before bedtime,  a cuddle on the couch, or push on the swing, those moments are like tiny beads on the necklace of a child’s life. A tiny, tangible bit of love that helps build them a brighter world. Continue reading

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Strawberry season is here! Let’s get picking…

Katy Pearson, Sonny Jim, #whatkatydidUK

Picking strawberries in his pyjamas: Sonny Jim in the garden

Helloooo strawberry season!

It’s a sure sign that summertime is here when strawberries hang heavily from their runners.

Last year more than 137,000 tonnes of strawberries were sold in the UK, with shoppers spending upwards of £1.3 million on the classically British berry.

And the cold start to the year (remember that snow?!) mixed with the recent warm days and cooler nights, has led to a slightly later start to the strawberry season. The resulting slower strawberry ripening means this year’s British strawberries look set to be packed with more flavour than usual. (Sonny Jim certainly seems to be enjoying the dozens he picks daily from our garden’s strawberry patch!)

And Essex has more than a couple of spots where you can pick handfuls of strawberries yourself. Here are some of the best… Continue reading

#getthemgrowing (even in torrential rain!)

Sonny Jim, #gethemgrowing, Katy Pearson

Little gardener: Sonny Jim in the rain

I think it’s safe to say your toddler has been bitten by the gardening bug, when he demands to check on his “peeeeeasssss pot” in the garden – in the middle of a downpour.

Sonny Jim was sent a box of gardening goodies by Dobbies as part of its #getthemgrowing campaign during National Children’s Gardening Week (May 26-June 3.)

The aim of NCGW is to encourage parents across the UK to get their kids outside and growing.

It comes as new research conducted by Dobbies shows that 61 per cent of parents believe gardening is a good way for their children to learn more about the natural world around them while still having fun. But common gardening knowledge seems to be lacking.

One in seven children do not know that onions are vegetables, and similarly 14 per cent don’t recognise potatoes as vegetables either. Continue reading

Street party felt like a wonderful trip back in time

Katy Pearson, Sonny Jim, #whatkatydidUK, Essex, Street party

Running wild: My Sonny Jim making the most of the road being closed

FOR a few hours on Saturday afternoon I felt like I’d stepped back in time.

Our road was closed for a royal wedding street party. There was bunting. Chalk drawings on the floor. Kids running wild up and down the avenue. Neighbours sitting on curbs in the sunshine, sipping beers and prosecco.

It was blooming lovely.

I was never allowed to play out as a child. But even if I had been, it wouldn’t have been as charming in the Nineties as it was for my Sonny Jim on Saturday. He literally had the time of his life. He ate his tea in the street, chased his aunties (and his football) up and down the road for hours and by the time bedtime came around, he had two grazed knees, dirt all over his face and was a sweaty, sticky mess of sunshine in toddler form. Continue reading

Life skills my toddler has taught me

Sonny Jim, Katy Pearson, #whatkatydidUK

Multi-tasking: Typing while saving Sonny Jim from stunts like this…

BEING a mummy is a job like no other.

I mean, in what other role would you be prepared to be on call 24/7, get literally pooped on, get screamed at for hours at a time and your only reward be an occasional wobbly smile and a tiny hand wrapped around your finger?

But two years down the line of mummying and I have to concede that I’ve definitely picked up a few new skills.

Here are some of the most utilised:

  • Mum-versations: The ability to chat to another parent, break off to shout/pick-up/wipe down your child, and then pick up the conversation again without missing a stride. Continue reading

I’m #thereforher this maternal mental health awareness week… are you?

#thereforher, Katy Pearson

Mums supporting mums: #thereforher

Do you know three mums? I’m pretty sure most of us do.

The thing is, statistically, one of them is struggling with a mental health issue – right now.

And all of them – especially new mums – are, probably, battling loneliness at some point each and every week.

This week though, it’s maternal mental health week. It shouldn’t take a campaign to remind us that mums matter, but us mamas are pretty good at putting everybody else’s needs before our own.

And it’s doing us no good. One of the most scary statistics I’ve read is that suicide is the leading direct cause of death for mums within the first year after their child is born. Continue reading

Yes the duchess looked fab… why wouldn’t she?

Katy Pearson, Sonny Jim, Gary Pearson

Not quite as put together as the duchess: Our first night at home with our boy

Unless you’ve been living under a rock this past week, it won’t have escaped your notice that we have a new baby prince – little Louis Arthur Charles.

And on Monday, the Duchess of Cambridge, appeared mere hours after giving birth to her third child, at the hospital entrance looking like she’d been on a relaxing spa weekend or something.

She looked absolutely immaculate… which is a little awe-inspiring when just seven hours earlier she’d been reaching the end of a five-hour labour.

But, somewhat depressingly, her post-partum appearance now appears to be something to be criticised, with some claiming it puts pressure on all new mums to look that put together.

Seriously?

Can we just all take a minute and get a bit of perspective? Continue reading