It’s thanks to IVF on the NHS that I have my boy

Katy Pearson, scan photo, seven week scan, Sonny Jim, #whatkatydidUK

As a seven-week fetus – our first look at Sonny Jim

TWO years ago today I was sat clutching my husband’s hand at Bart’s Hospital in London.

After nine years of trying for a baby, five years of fertility treatments and a round of IVF, it seemed I’d finally fallen pregnant.

And two days before my 31st birthday we were waiting for a scan to confirm that it was definitely true, for a first look at our baby, to see its teeny little heart beating.

When Sonny Jim’s flickering heart flashed up on the grainy screen, I cried. He looked a bit like a prawn. Or maybe a crocodile. And it was the most beautiful thing I’d ever seen. Continue reading

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Mums about town: Family fun in south Essex, Aug 11-Aug 20

the Princess Emporium, priory park, essex

Find the fun: The Princess Emporium will be at Priory Park tomorrow

Play in the Park. Friday, August 11. 10am-12.30pm. Free. Suitable for all ages. 
There will be water play, playdough, songs time with instruments, some books and arts and crafts. Oh and bubbles. Find the fun at Priory Park (the green space behind the museum.) Bring sun hats, sun cream, snacks, water, blanket, activities/toys to share.

Caterpillar Club. Tuesday, August 15. 10am-12pm. £6 per child. Suitable for one to four-year-olds.
A fun morning of indoor and outdoor activities for pre schoolers at Langdon Visitor Centre and Nature Reserve, Lower Dunton Road, Basildon. Booking essential, call 01268 419103. Continue reading

Helping to stop another mummy ever experiencing this heartbreak

EVERYONE hates journalists right? We’re right up there with politicians and car dealers.

Except.

Except…when something like this happens.

Emma Cox is one of my dearest friends. She’s godmother to my Sonny Jim.

And when she went to visit her baby boy Alfie’s grave at the weekend, only to discover it had been dug up and another baby buried there, my job (nowadays done from home and squeezed in around Sonny Jim) suddenly did all the things I hoped it would when, age 17, I decided being a journalist would be pretty cool.

It meant I could get (some) answers, when no one was getting back to her and her husband. It meant I could help her to make sure no one else would ever find themselves in the same god awful situation. It meant her voice was louder and reaching more people than it otherwise would. Continue reading

The baby legging brand loved by celebs… and made in an Essex shed

Fred & Noah, Fearne Cotton, Katy Pearson, #whatkatydidUK

Fred & Noah fan: Fearne Cotton

YOU kind of know you’ve made it in the fashion stakes when Fearne Cotton posts a picture of herself on Instagram on Christmas Eve in one of your creations.

And then shortly after that posts another of her little girl Honey in one of your designs too.

Such is the rise of baby legging brand Fred & Noah – an empire run from a shed in a mum-of-two’s garden in Rochford.

Natalie Reynolds, 34, started making trousers for 0-4-year-olds while on maternity leave with her second son, Freddie.

Natalie was a lecturer in fashion design at South Essex College, running the fashion course, and initially making the leggings was just about her getting back into her hobbies.

But it very quickly turned itself into a serious income.

Natalie, who is an ex Thorpe Bay High School pupil, recalls: “It was exactly a year after starting the business that I was handing in my notice to the college and taking the leap to work full time on Fred & Noah at home with my husband. Continue reading

My chat with… Alison Moyet

Alison Moyet, Katy Pearson, #whatkatydidWhat is your earliest memory?
When we lived in Basildon, sitting in the laundry bucket which was filled with water, which was our take on a swimming pool, in the back garden. I must have been about two or something.
Funnily enough when my parents were thinking about their wills and we were asked what we wanted from the home, the one thing that I said was I want the laundry bucket.
I still have it indoors, this big yellow laundry bucket.

Where is your favourite place in Essex, and why?
It’s going to be Basildon because it’s where I grew and and because it’s where all my hopeful years were, those times where anything is possible. Continue reading

Making it easier for mummies to network too

the Essex Business Women’s Experience

Working women – at the Essex Business Women’s Experience

An annual event to support women in business has just made it easier for working mums to get involved.

The Essex Business Women’s Experience is in its third year and will be held at the Park Inn Radisson, Southend on Friday.

The event includes 65 stands of Essex-based women-led businesses, networking events and workshops.

And now the founders, Beccy Mae-Rose and Rosemary Cunningham have teamed up with Pop Up Childcare Essex to make attending easier for mums with little ones. Continue reading

Let’s talk about last night… at Revolution Southend

Blank Canvas, Katy Pearson, Revolution, Southend

Shaken not stirred: I try my hand at making Blank Canvas

I confess, I don’t get out much. Since Sonny Jim’s arrival you can usually find me in my PJs by 8pm.

So when I *do* go out, I need that night to be a good ‘un. Happily, the newest bar in Southend more than delivered.

I was invited to Revolution Southend’s preview night – ahead of its launch night tonight.

My BFF and I got a peek around the bar and (heated) roof terrace, I tried my hand at making my own cocktail (thanks Barney!) and got to grips with a scrumptious burger.

With the town’s nightclub scene rather dying out, following the closures in recent years of some big name venues (yes Churchills and Element I’m looking at you) cocktail bars/restaurants are starting to fill the void. Continue reading