Not just Bits and Bows...

Not just Bits and Bows...

Wednesday, 30 December 2015

What will the New Year bring...

Heya my lovelies!

It's been a while since I was on here eh! Well I can assure you I'm back, and I'm back for good!
Baby Daniel is now 6 months old, so I'm over the sleepless nights (THANK GOD!) and the settling in period, and I'm determined 2016 will be my year to have time to myself, and do more of what I enjoy!

2015 has been one hell of a year, I'll be writing all about that over the next few days!I have so many ideas, launches, work ideas that I want to put into action, I just need to make the time for them all! But I will do it, and I'll make sure your all part of it!

I thank every single one of you for the support, love, and kind words throughout this past year! The messages I recieved about my PND post was just mind blowing, reading your lovely words and knowing I touched so many of your hearts, really did make me reassess things, and understand that everyone is fighting a battle, behind that smile, there really can be all sorts going on! So thank you for opening my eyes to what really happens behind your selfie!

Also a massive shoutout to all my Bits and Bows customers, past, present and future! Without you I'd most likely be stuck in a job I hate, missing out on watching my children grow up, back in an awful retail job that dulls my brain! When you buy from me, your not paying for a millionaire to buy their 5th house, or travel the world, your paying for Daisy-Ella's dance lessons, for baby Daniels ever growing baby grows, and you pay to put food on our table! To have my regulars come back time and time again, some which have been coming for the past 5 years makes my heart melt! I promise every single one of you that 2016 is going to be bigger and better than ever before!

With Younique Make up and skincare available from January, Childrenswear from February, and Bridalwear from March it's a busy few months ahead but I CAN DO IT, only with your help though!
Please continue to support Bits and Bows and help spread the word far and wide! Many of you are not only customers, but have also turned into friends and I will always be grateful of having such fabulous ladies in my life!

I said I wouldn't be making New Years resolutions but hey ho, why not! I've definitely learnt lots from 2015, so why not continue to learn from them....

1-Make more time for ME! Blogging, shopping, reading a book! Even just a long hot child free bath! This WILL happen!
2-Take on a new venture...first stop,YOUNIQUE!Maybe even look into doing a make it course this summer!?
3-Stop being a YES man, say no if I actually don't want to do something, the amount of time I waste on doing things for others,instead of myself and my family is unbelievable! I'll never be a selfish person,never! But I need to learn when to say NO!

So on that note, I'll love and leave you all to have the most wonderful New Year and I wish every single one of you a fantastic 2016!Thank you, thank you and thank you once again....


Monday, 13 April 2015

Just a little something....

I've been dying to get round to writing this post since my last one! If you read my last blog (which had a whopping 2000 views!) then I would like to say THANK YOU! If you have messaged me, commented on the post, or contacted me in any way THANK YOU again! And lastly to the girlies who have messaged me saying they have booked GP appointments after reading it, a MASSIVE THANK YOU to you! I feel so proud that I achieved exactly what I wanted to do!

I'm a bit of a closed book usually, so you can imagine how hard it was to write, it was almost like therapy though! It made me feel a sense of relief, like a weight had been lifted from my shoulders!

The morning after the list went live I woke up to so many messages from girls that had felt, or was feeling the same things! I couldn't believe how many Parents out there feel the same, yet all feel so alone! YOU ARE NOT ALONE! I hope you all realise this now! I've set up a new facebook group 'P-Word Momma's where we all have our daily rants....everyone and anyone is welcome to join! Whether your a new mom struggling, an expectant mom just after some regular conversation, or a PND/PTS sufferer who wants a chat with a stranger! We've also spoken about arranging a local meet up, somewhere kiddie friendly, where we can all have a gossip amd a cuppa!

But anyway, the main reason for this post is to thank everyone who read it and sent such amazing feedback, I didn't stop smiling all week!
It's funny you know, I had some beautiful messages off some friends and family, but the majority was off total strangers! Some family members/friends haven't even mentioned it, and obviously there's going to be some people that think 'oh what an attention seeker' or 'Oh god, as if she has put that out there for the world to see' but you know what, who cares? I certainly don't! It was the best decision I have made through this process and I KNOW I have made such a difference to so many people just by talking about a subject that is so taboo, so I'll carry on!

My workshops start next Thursday! It will last for 8 weeks and yup I'm Sh*****g myself! Eeeeek! But I'm determined to give them a shot! Any help that is offered, that is free and that is hard to find, is worth it right!? I hope you girls that spoke to your GP last week find some peace, and get some help! If it isn't offered go back again, and again, and again! Don't give up!

9 weeks to go until Baby Bump arrives, and far too much to look forward to! No more looking back!

This week we find out what school Daisy gets offered, the date of my section AND its my baby shower this weekend so I am far too excited for things to come!
I also only have a small amount of work left to do before my maternity can officially start, I can step away from my sewing machine and enjoy a summer with good people and my beautiful children!

Lots of love and high fives to all you hot Mommas!


Tuesday, 7 April 2015

So you suffered with....?

I've been umming and ahhing about whether to write this post for a long while, but today I got asked a question which made my decision, and I feel even if it helps one or two people, I'll have done a good thing!

At my 28 week hopsital appointment today, I had a midwife I had never met before, and she took a look through my green notes and noticed the dreaded 'P' word, and asked...

'So you suffered with post natal depression, have you had help or support with this?"

For the first time in 4 years of ignoring the question and the subject, it felt amazing to say YES, I start a pre-natal workshop in a couple of weeks, and I'm on the waiting list for One to one therapy.

After having a birth trauma with Daisy-Ella 4 years ago, resulting in an emergancy CS, and Post natal depression being spotted quite early on, I always denied it!

'I'm coping fine'
'I'm just tired"
'Yes of course, I'm enjoying every second'
'Yes, The overwhelming feeling of love is amazing'
'Yes, The labour was well worth every second'

Those are just a few of the things I would say when Health visitors, friends and family would ask questions, all with a nod and a smile and a sickly feeling inside!
I didnt feel the 38 hour labout was worth the sleepless nights and crying baby, I didnt feel like I was enjoying every second, I felt scared to hold my baby because of the pain I was feeling...and with every single one of these emotions came guilt...MASSIVE guilt! A sickening, butterfly, pit of my stomach guilt!

I went to my GP around 9 weeks after having Daisy, I wasn't eating well, was feeling emotional, and the tiredness was killing me! She referred me to the health visitor and said I may have post natal depression...No way I told my partner, and my mom...I'm just tired aren't I? I'm just stressed....isn't every new mother? So I visited the HV, put on my best smile and biggest act, and pretended I was perfectly fine adjusting to like as a new momma! I couldn't have made a bigger mistake!

It is only NOW...4 years on, being pregnant with my second that I have decided to act, because I refuse to ever feel like that again! This time round I want to remember every milestone, be able to hold and care for my baby without being in a daze, feeling like im being constantly watched and judged!
I remember one comment which will never ever leave me, Daisy was around 5 weeks old, and someone close said to me 'That's the first time I've seen you hold her' To hear that was heartbreaking! I had held her in the comfort of my own home, still struggling from an infected C-section scar, I did struggle when I was out and about, and that comment was a kick in the stomach that triggered a lot of negative, judgemental thoughts!

It has been looked into whether it was actually PND I suffered from, or Post traumatic stress from the birth, Or even both! I am totally against medication/anti depressants, I know they work for so many people and I take my hat off to those that choose to have them, but I wanted to try a more behaivoural and emotional route! Everyone is different aren't they!?
One of the first things I did was to choose a different hospital this time round, to avoid triggering any of the birth trauma! I also opted for an elective C-section!

I went to my GP around Oct/Nov last year, after a really bad year and finding out I was pregnant again, I didn't want anything to trigger those feelings again, and I was reffered to the local healthy minds authority...I was  embarressed at first, it was something I had kept from everyone around me, even my partner of 12 years! But the feeling of relief was immediate and I wish I had done it so much sooner!

After an hours assessment I have now been reffered to a 8 week workshop which starts this month, where other parents who have suffered similar, meet up, chat, drink tea and concentrate on positive thinking and how to avoid the same feelings and actions as last time!
I'm also just a few weeks away to meet with a one to one therapist to practice Cognitive Behaivoural therapy! I honestly cant wait!
Not only will I be more mentally aware this time round, the people close to me will be able to recognise and watch out for any signs and symptons that may pop up!

I have already made a start on making myself feel better...I take time out to meditate, even if it is just 2 minutes before I get up, or when I go to bed! I have started to use Art therapy as a way to switch off and find peace, and I have been finding the positive in everything!
I truly believe it is the little things that matter...The things you can help yourself with! It doesn't ALWAYS take medication, or a midwife to spot things, you can really help yourself!

If one thing comes from this post, I want one mother out there who feels down, or feels they need extra support, I want you to get it! Speak to your partner or GP, Even google local baby and parent centres, mingling may help! I hibernated and didn't really mingle with other moms and children when Daisy was born, I was happy to stay in, and I definatly think getting out more would have helped!

Another thing I want to happen, if your a friend of someone who has just had a baby, message them, facebook them, offer to visit, offer to pop round and do their washing up! It's the tiny little things that they will remember and be grateful for! Not the nappy cakes, expensive clothes or false promises of babysitting...none of that will help our mental health! It really is the flying 10 minute visits to make her a quick cuppa, to load her washing machine, to tell her to sort her eyebrows out if she looks like s**t!

Friendship and family are the key to recovery...I've certainly got mine sorted this time round, I feel confident that those closest to me know what I need, and know what to look out for! But only because I'm open now, and I will ask for help if I need it, or have a cry when I'm having a bad day!

To go from party girl, who only shopped at Topshop and who lived at home with her a full time mommy, living in leggings, in a new flat with real bills and a new baby was a lot for me to take, and I was never going to admit I needed help at the time! Pride, embarressment and lack of confidence affected a full year of my life, and how I did things, but I am happy to say I am now confident, content and proud of what I have learnt and become! A beautiful little girl called Daisy-Ella has taught me what life is really about, and I am determined this Baby Bump will do the same!

I hope this helps just one person take the step of getting help or support, I hope it encourages you to go for a walk around the block if your feeling claustrophobic, and I hope you too can come out feeling more positive and confident as a parent.

Good luck and High five to all of you!


Friday, 3 April 2015

What's in my Hospital bag...?

Everytime I tell people I have my hospital bag packed already, they either look at me like I have two heads and I'm crazy, OR they look at me in slight envy, wishing they were so bloody organised! 
You know me, OCD over lists, organisation and needing to have things prepared and ready at the first possible chance! Anyway I do only have around 10 weeks left! Eeeek!

I got my bag from Primark just £2.50 and it's the perfect size! It's just like a big laundry bag, but I thought why pay loads or bring a suitcase when this is the perfect size and a fab storage option for afterwards!
It has fitted every single item in perfectly, so I'm really pleased! It came in other prints too! Florals etc!

So here's a quick post to show what I've packed! 
I'm due to have an elective CS, most likely the second week of June, so it's going to be a hot, stuffy few days in hospital, so bear that in mind!

For me...

2 x nighties, Primark £6 each
1 x high waisted PJ's, Primark £7
8 pairs of FAT pants, Primark £4.50 per pack of 5
4 bra's, no padding or underwire! Primark £6 per pack of 2
Comfy new slippers, Primark £4
Coming home outfit-Maxi dress and flip flops!
Mini Shampoo/conditioner, Aussie mini bottles!
Hair bobbles
Dry shampoo (essential!)
Crocodile hair clip
Fresh new bath towel, Primark £7
Breast pads, Tesco £1.50
Maternity pads, Tesco £1.50

For Baby...

Mittens, Asda £2
5 x sleep suits, Asda and Tesco
8 x vests, Asda and Tesco
Nappies, Little Angels from Asda
Coming home outfit, The Disney Store

Things I need to add...

Phone charger!

Have I missed anything? Are there any essentials you think I need or any special extras you have packed in your bags? Comment with anything you think I have missed or need! to pack and unpack, then pack and unpack....!


Mommy Confessions...

A couple of days ago I shared a fellow Momma's blog post on my facebook page, It was all about people who seem to offer a whole load of advice to you when you have a newborn, some even start when your not even popped yet! It was a great read, absolutly spot on, and once I had shared it I realised how many of you agreed! That's where I can up with this post idea!
So as the comments starting rolling in on my post I realised how different each and every one of us are! We all feel that 'Mom guilt', we all learn something new every day, and we all get offered very unwanted advice from those around us! So how do we cope with it? Get angry? Shout? Smile and nod? Everyone reacts differently, I know when I had Daisy it felt like from the second my test showed up them two red lines people were lining up to offer advice...Nice, I thought (At the time), looking back half of it was utter bull***t, and the rest was either from people who didn't even have children, people who saw themselves as 'Supermoms' or people who dissapeared and soon got bored after 3/4 weeks!

Last time round I was told so many things, I felt fit to burst! Opinions on bottle making, labour, sleeping arrangements, how to wrap my baby, how to wean my baby, potty training, how to hold my baby, how to cough after my section, and worst of all TO SLEEP WHEN THE BABY SLEEPS...Well believe me my baby NEVER slept, and if I was to do that on the rare occasion that she did snooze, who would do the cleaning, washing, cooking, bathing, sweeping, I really need to say more?

I noticed so many Momma's on my post comment about breastfeeding, and was really surprised at how many agreed with me! Why are we forced into feeling guilty if it doesn't work, or we simply dont want to do it? I read every pregnancy book there is first time round, and I decided against breast is best, no paticular reason why other than I just didnt feel like it appealed to me...I felt I had enough to practice for, to learn about and to do, and it just felt like another thing to add to my ever growing list!
My decision is the same this time round, formula all the way...Some of you may not agree, some of you may, but surely thats our right's as Momma's, to make those important choices ourselves!?

Another controversial one...The birth, the labour...natural, elective etc? After a hideous 38 hour labour first time round, resulting in an emergancy CS, I knew I was NEVER going through that again! It actually put me off every wanting children again (Yet here I am!) So this time an elective has been booked, and agreed to and every ounce of anxiety I felt has gone...just like magic! If you can take away that panic, and dread why not? Afterall a happy mom, makes a happy baby!
So what advice should we really listen to? In my opinion NONE, well actually no, thats not true, I always seem to listen to my Mom, and my cousin who is a midwife! Apart from those two, I'm afraid I will probably switch off if you try and offer without me asking for it! It's not me being rude, and yes I'll probably nod and smile, depending on how my hormones are that day, and how much sleep I've had that night, it's just that I like to learn from my own mistakes, and do things my way...Afterall I have already raised one beautiful happy child, I feel more than capable to do it all over again!

So anyway, my point is, every Momma, old or new, 1 child or 10 children is on a learning journey, no mother knows more than the next, there is no right or wrong way to do anything!
So next time you would like to offer advice on how someone should be winding their baby, how breast is best, or how your child will turn into the devil if they sleep in your bed, think again! If that child is loved, fed and has lots of cuddles, thats all that matters really! Lets rid the Momma world of competitiveness and unite together!

Lets face it, none of us are perfect, but we cooked up those babies good, and now we are en route to the biggest journey of all....parenthood! Lets embrace it, not fight for it!


Thursday, 26 February 2015

Nursery Tour!

I've been dying to get the nursery started since I found out I was pregnant at 5 weeks! I held back as much as I could but then as soon as the New Year was upon us, I knew it was time to start my favourite thing of all...SHOPPING!

Daniel woke up New Year's Day and I had everything added to my basket and planned in my head, so with the go ahead from Mr Bank himself I had a spree and literally ordered everything we needed!

By this point we knew we was having a baby boy, due to early screening and test results (which I'll go into in another post!)

I had a few ideas in mind,and had been stalking pinterest for weeks, so knew that we wanted a navy/nautical/crafty theme going on! We rolled with our (my) ideas and here is how it all turned out!...
I ordered these letters, which are delivered as plain unfinished wood, and I painted them myself with white gloss and attatched them to the wall with sticky tabs!
The letters were from ebay, 2mm and cost £6.00 for 6 letters!
The clouds are also from ebay, around £3 for 18! Although I only used a few as I didn't want cloud overload!
The wall colour is Dulux Feature Wall, Sapphire Salute! (£15.99) We really, really struggled to find a navy blue paint! After hours of searching we finally found this one, and luckily the tin just about had enough to cover the wall we needed!
Rather than have a wardrobe I wanted a clothing rail and shelving, which is what we did for Daisy's nursery too, so we hit Ikea for these as I find their storage fab! The rail (MULIG) was just £6.50, and canvas style shelves around £8.50 too!
We DEFINATLY need to fill up on clothes and accessories though, I'm just holding out for the S/S style baby collections to fully hit the shops so we can go on a spree of mini outfits!
NOW this cot bale was sooooo hard to find! With our navy theme we REALLY struggled to find navy or nautical cot bedding...In fact navy anything! I eventually found one online at Mothercare,for £34.99, however when it arrived it was for a crib NOT a cot! Whoooops! I knew the price seemed too good to be true! Baby brain already! So back to Mothercare it went in exchange for this 'Whale Bay' cot bale, which set us back £69.99! Quite pricey in my opinion, but I blame myself for not going with generic baby blue Everything! It is worth it though,the quality is great and it's exactly what the room needed! Mothercare also sell other things to match, so I'm currently eyeing up the changing mat and bath set!
The Moses basket was loaned to us by my sister in law, It is Claire De Lume, and is in fact the same as the one we had for Daisy when she was born! But I had given hers away!
The stand is a rocking stand off ebay, for a bargain £10! It was actually from Babies R Us, but their ebay store!
This rocking chair was actually given to us by a family member when Daisy was a bump, and I NEVER got round to painting it for her (Bad mom alert!) It was originally a mahogony style wood with a vintage brown floral cushion! I was determined to finally sort it out this time round, and so I did! Using Antique white chalk paint, I didnt need to sand it or prepare the wood, so after just one coat this is the outcome! The striped fabric you can see is ready to be cover the current seat, and the Mickey Mouse cushion is from the Disney Store for a bargain £10!
So here is where Baby Daniel will sleep! I knew I wanted white furniture from the start, so as soon as I saw this Mama's and Papa's cot I knew I had to have it! I was a great price, from Argos on Ebay, for just £139.99 and that included the 3 tier changing table to match!
The cloud mobile is from The White company for £25.00! Quite pricey considering it is technically just cardboard and string, however it matched perfectly and it sets the room off!

We still have a few things to do, such as put shelves up, cover the rocking chair and buy a striped rug! But I'm in no rush now, it's all coming together and it's just so exciting!

What do you think of Baby Daniel's room?! Do you like the idea of using Navy rather than baby blue?
Leave your comments below :-)

Monday, 23 February 2015

Heading in a new direction.....

Its been far too long since I posted anything on my blog, and I've been thinking for a while now of taking it in a new direction...Yes I love fashion, clothes, hauls and shopping BUT my life and priorities are different now, and I find myself stalking momma blogs over fashion blogs on a daily basis!
I've left retail, I'm 23 weeks pregnant, and Im loving everything housewife! Im learning to cook (at last), Im loving DIY, and 2015 is turning out to be a pretty good one so far!
Anyway, because of all this Ive decided to make a comeback...a serious one! Not a post every blue moon, but regular updates, moans, giggles and hauls!
I could talk forever, and I want to express that in typing! I'll probably drive you all mad rambling on, but hey, if you like it you'll read it right?
I've experienced a turbulent pregnancy, and face struggles every day, and I hope sharing these kinda things with you will not only help me, but maybe even help some of you!

So I hope you enjoy reading as much as I'm looking forward to writing!

Love Sarah...


Cute Polka Dotted Pink Bow Tie Ribbon