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Ireland’s finest pregnancy and parenting magazine maternity & infant



369 Summer

€3.75/£3.30 June/July 2014 June/July 2014 ISSUE 45 we’ve got the whole family covered!

Style Top Trends for Every Trimester

Attachment parenting Fad or the future?

Prenatal fitness

why exercis e is ess ential for a healthy pregnancy 06

Life after baby

look and f eel great with a newborn

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Expert advice


parenting know-how

9 772009 193014

How to travel with a toddler

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make y every da AN


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1 June/July 2014





A two-night break for two to Knockranny House Hotel & Spa


On the Cover 20

Trimester Style Dress that bump well from conception to post-birth!


Prenatal Fitness Yes, exercise IS good for you – but caution is needed...


How to Travel with a Toddler Why staycations are great for families this year


Attachment Parenting Is this the future of parenting?


Life After Baby Our brandnew section focuses on looking and feeling great as a new mum


Ireland’s fInest pregnancy and parentIng magazIne maternity & infant



Pregnancy * BaBy * toddler & ch Ild

Maternity Our NEW style


section shows you how and what to wear throughout

369 Summer

€3.75/£3.30 June/July 2014 June/July 2014 ISSue 45

those glorious nine months 24

we’ve got the whole famIly covered!


your little one’s very own

top trends for every trImester

personal stylist!

AttAchment pArenting


Fad or the future?

wh y e xe r cI Se I S e SSentIal f o r a h e a lth y P r egnancy 06

life after baby

lo o k a nd fe e l g r eat wIth a ne wBo r n

MI June-Jul 2014_Contents.indd 1


expert advIce


parentIng know-how

9 772009 193014

Prenatal fitness

plUs recIpes

You Our guide to staying stylish on summer days out

how to travel wIth a toddler

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Baby & Toddler Become

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9 23/05/2014 14:45:44

2 June/July 2014

Contents 48

Regulars 5

Over to you


M&I Online


News All the latest news,



reviews and products 59

Annabel Karmel Purees to make your baby’s mouth water







Hospital Bag What to pack and when. We’ve got

tells us her experience as a

everything covered!


Sudden Births What to do


when baby is in a hurry 44

Blog We Log What made us laugh in blogland this



know about voting in this year’s maternity & infant Awards! 66

Win a luxury two-night stay in Knockranny House Hotel & Spa!


Store Directory


Stammering Why your child to help him or her Father’s Day Special One father has some sound advice for new dads, plus top gifts to spoil him


shouldn’t pump too soon 88

First 1,000 Days nutrition

might stammer – and how 48

The Milk Machine CLIODNA GILROY on why you

Toddler Nutrition Final part of our look at the


Mummy My Way One reader

Awards What you need to

Separation Making changes in family life easier for your child to accept

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Experts 74

Ask the GP


Ask the Obstetrician


Ask the Fertility Expert


Ask the Dietician


Ask the Physio


Ask the Sleep Expert

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EST. 1933


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23/5/14 09:48:49 21/05/2014 14:50:35


Welcome We’re very excited to present our new-look maternity & infant magazine! Having a baby is one of the most exciting times of your life, and our aim is to help make this time as amazing as possible for you. Our revamped fashion section acts as a personal stylist for you during your pregnancy, showing you how to dress your bump for every stage of your pregnancy. No frumpy tents allowed! We haven’t forgotten your baby or toddler as well - make sure he or she is top of the trends with our great picks and advice. The features section is as chockfull as ever with helpful features and trustworthy advice, including a guide to packing your hospital bag, helping your child overcome a stutter and looking at the controversial subject of attachment parenting. Plus, as always, we have advice from

THE TEAM Acting Editor: Penny Gray Assistant Editor: Natalie Burke Sub Editor: Elaine Burke Editorial Assistant: Rachel Murray Editorial Manager: Mary Connaughton

the experts in our knowledge section, and a brand-new section dedicated to making the most of your life as a mum. We also have some exciting developments here at maternity & infant HQ. Our brand-spankingnew website is now live at www., and is full of great advice and features. Plus we’re gearing up for the 2014 maternity & infant Awards - go to p65 for details on voting. Finally, I’m delighted to announce the addition of Natalie Burke to the team; Natalie will be looking after all things maternity & infant in the months to come. Welcome Natalie!

Art Director: Jane Matthews Advertising Designer: Jennifer Reid, Seamus Neeson Photography & Illustrations: Getty Images, Thinkstock Production Manager: Mary Connaughton Production: Jennifer Reid Sales Director: Paul Clemenson Email or write to maternity & infant, Ashville Media, Old Stone Building, Blackhall Green, Dublin 7; Tel: (01) 432 2200; Web: All rights reserved. Every care has been taken to ensure that the information contained in this magazine is accurate. The publishers cannot, however, accept responsibility for errors or omissions. Reproduction by any means in whole or in part without the permission of the publisher is prohibited. © Ashville Media Group 2014. All discounts, promotions and competitions contained in this magazine are run independently of maternity & infant. The promoter/advertiser is responsible for honouring the prize. ISSN 2009 1931

Enjoy the issue!

Penny Gray Acting Editor Find us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter







Established journalist and editor Ray Walsh is dad to 10-year-old Aoibhe and 7-year-old Liam, and he has some sterling advice for new dads on p48.

Personal trainer and founder of Baby Body Fit ( Steph Sinnott is expecting her second baby and wrote the feature on the importance of exercise in pregnancy on p34.

Freelance writer Nicola Davies is also a health psychologist and has some sage advice for any parent of a child with a stutter. See p46 for more.

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23/05/2014 14:41:05

5 Your Say

Over To You What’s Trending?

The Dilemma “I am pregnant with my first baby and my partner and I are overjoyed! The thing is, I want to find out the sex of our baby, but my partner wants to wait for the surprise. How do we come to a compromise on such a big decision?”

#MyChildhoodSelfie The latest selfie craze to take over the social networking world is #MyChildhoodSelfie, which sees us posting cute or embarassing pics of us as babies or toddlers, in order to raise money for Childline. Get posting and drop us a tweet while you’re there! @maternityinfant

Win A threemonth supply of P20 Sunscreen! If you lead an active lifestyle, regularly applying sunscreen is essential to protect your skin from the harsh rays of the sun. P20 Sunscreen offers broad spectrum protection, covering both UVA and UVB rays, and stays effective even on extended exposure to the sun. Apply P20 in the morning and you are protected for the entire day giving you and your family more time to enjoy the sun even after frequent swimming. Unlike other sunscreens, P20 uses a unique formulation that dries in seconds. To win a three-month supply of P20 sunscreen, simply get in touch with us via Twitter, Facebook, email or post, and if your comment is picked as our favourite, you’ll win this fab prize!

Contact us


At the very beginning my partner wanted to know but I was adamant that I really didn’t want to know. I told him he could find out if he wanted but he said he wouldn’t due to the risk of letting it slip over the 40 weeks (it’s a long time to keep a secret). He’s now delighted he didn’t find out and we’re eagerly awaiting our surprise. Ciara O’Murchú My husband wanted to know and I didn’t. The consultant made the decision for us though as she told my husband if I didn’t want to know, then he wouldn’t know! Perhaps you could both pick a week to find out, say 36 weeks, that way it’s still a surprise until then and it won’t be very long until you get to meet baba. Erin Ponsonby There are not many surprises left in life. I think you should both wait. The surprise is lovely, we didn’t find out on our first child and we’re now expecting our second and we’ve no intention of finding out. The surprise is best! Louise Kenneally

I didn’t find out on my last two pregnancies and I did this time - and it’s completely my little secret. Hubbie knows that I know and that’s fine and I just alternate the ‘he’ and ‘she’. It is lovely to know and to enjoy knowing and the preparations! If you feel that you could find out and keep it to yourself; that’s your compromise! Louise Moran [STRAP] Parenting

[HEAD] Attachmen t parenting: fad or the future?


Me and my partner were in the same situation, I wanted to know but he didn’t, in the end we decided to find out but keep it to ourselves and make it a surprise for everyone else. He found out what it was and then told me when we got home. That way, for a little while, he was the only one who knew and it was a much more precious moment being told by him. Alexandra Lloyd

Star Post Style Saviour I’m four months pregnant with my first baby and whilst I’m over the moon with our little miracle, I’m at the “is she fat or pregnant?” stage and finding it really hard to find maternity clothes that fit. With these pregnancy hormones of mine, I even ended up in a dressing room recently crying over not being able to fit into anything! I tend to wear a lot of skirts, dresses and shorts, generally getting my legs out in the summer. But last year’s skirts won’t close over my bump and my jeans are uncomfortable. Help! Rachel, via email TrEND

Check out our fashion feature on trimester style, we hope it will help you (and other stylish mums-tobe) make the most of dressing your growing bumps this summer!



Loose fitting dresses



are perfect in summer heat, no matter what to create a look that will keep you cool and the trimester. Match with these accessori suit your burgeoning es bump.













4 4

6 6 7 5 8



7 8

1 White daisy stud earrings, €2, River 2 Rita round brow Island bar sunglasses, €16.59, Accessorize 3 Daisy smock dress, €48, ASOS 4 Milk and honey nail polish, €9.29, Topshop 5 Eden capri, €26, Dorothy Perkins 6 Faux pearl bracelet, €11.24, ASOS 7 Edi skinny Missguided 8 jeans, €38.99, Ted Baker bown leather bow belt, €82.87, ASOS 9 Quilted plimsolls, €25, River Island

Wide foot sandals are easier

on swollen feet

1 Cubic zirconia hand chain, €18.50, Leah three-stran Topshop 2 d necklace, €9, 3 Denim jacket, €29.95, dress, €44, Topshop H&M 4 Happy floral flippy 5 €8.95, Sally Hansen Firey island nail polish, 6 Quilted double-zip body bag, €11.99, crossplatform sliders, New Look 7 Chunky strap €29.99, New Look

1 Dew drop chunky earring, €14.17, 2 Red stone ring Accessorize pack, €12, Miss Selfridge 3 Loose fit trench coat, €89.95, Zara 4 Red floral dress, €38, Next 5 Mini 6 Vibrant red/orange city bag, €49.95, Zara (424) lipstick, €13, 7 Covered buckle INGLOT belt, €14, Next leather loafers, 8 Marathon €49.16, ASOS

I had never considered the option of using cloth nappies until I read your feature recently (April/May 2014). While I love using disposable nappies, cloth nappies seem like a good alternative and economical too. My sister has just announced her pregnancy so I gave her my copy (on lend) of maternity & infant to make sure she has read up on all the options available to her! Fiona, via email



Sharing is caring



Accessorise a chain with boho look for a

On trend beauty buy

1 Mama blouse, €14.95, H&M; 2 Maternity lace con dress with bodyribbon, €50, ASOS; 3 Round brow glasses, €21.46, sunTopshop; bag, €41.93, Accessorize 4 Georgia winged handheld ; 5 Light pink cluster necklace, €60, flower River Island; 6 Mama chino shorts, €19.95, H&M; 7 Light pink block heel barely there sandal, €55, River Island; 8 Kapture, €59, Office; 9 Big felt floppy hat, €36, Topshop; 10 Maternity leigh jeans, €48.24, pale pink Topshop; 11 Broderie €22, Next; 12 front t-shirt, Kaftan xxxx, €xx, xxxxx;w

maternity & infant, Old Stone Building, Blackhall Green, Dublin 7

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22/05/2014 19:01:03


Special Report

The idea of childhood vaccines is that they protect your baby from potentially serious illnesses at the start of his life. With the most common concerns in mind, we explore the often navigated waters of baby vaccinations.




hen a baby is still in the womb, they have a natural immunity against disease, but once they are born they are more vulnerable to infections. Immunising your baby is the safest and most effective way to protect them from contracting serious diseases. Shortly after you return home from the hospital with your baby you will receive an information booklet “Your child’s immunisation - A Guide for parents”. This gives information about the immunisation schedule over the next year that will end with your child being protected against 12 life threatening diseases. While it may seem cruel to inject your tiny perfect baby, there is lots of research that states that

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vaccinating your child is the easiest way to prevent them from contracting a particularly fatal condition like measles, and at the same time, prevents a country-wide outbreak of diseases like whooping cough. Before your child is immunised, the doctor or nurse will check with you that your child is well and able to get the vaccines. If you have any concerns or questions about the vaccines ask the doctor or nurse beforehand. You can also ask your public health nurse for further information at your local HSE clinic. The most important thing is to make sure that you get the answers to any questions you have and that you feel entirely comfortable with them before your child receives any vaccines.

26/05/2014 12:01:40

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8 online If you haven’t already heard, it’s official: Our brand new website is live! is everything you love about this magazine and more. It’s chockfull of advice from getting pregnant right through the first important years of your little one’s life and is just one click away. Check it out!

✹ Week by week pregnancy advice: From what to expect in each trimester, to advice on creating your own birthing plan, we’ve got your pregnancy covered. ✹ Caring for your newborn: Our advice for caring for your new baby, from feeding and immunisation to teething and baby proofing.

✹ Nutrition and recipes: We keep you updated with the latest nutrition and diet advice as well as our favourite recipes for both mum and baby. ✹ Health and wellbeing: While your attention is always on baby, it’s important to take care of you too. Check out our advice for health and well-being for new mums.

✹ Latest in maternity fashion: All the latest and greatest in fashion for dressing your bump, along with the most recent news from the High Street. ✹ Sex and love: Keeping that spark alive! ✹ Parenting: The trials and tribulations that come with parenting, and how to cope! ✹ And much, much more!

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23/05/2014 11:55:00



KELLY CLARKSON (@kelly_clarkson) “It’s my birthday!!!! For my birthday I have asked my unborn baby girl to sleep through the night and laugh a lot when she comes out :)”

PIECE OF CAKE Cake Lingerie have launched a brand new Mousse bra (€44.90), aimed at those with smaller busts. Ideal for the more petite frame, the Mousse bra, which is part of Cake Lingerie’s Maternity and Nursing range, is non-wired and available in sizes A-DD cup with 30-36 bands. Available from www.


MAKE THE MOST OF MUM TIME Dunboyne Castle is a slice of luxury on the outskirts of Dublin and the perfect spot to treat yourself to some much-needed ‘me time’. Upon entering the hotel’s Seoid Spa you will immediately relax with the use of the hydrotherapy pool, adjoining sauna, steam room and outdoor jacuzzi.Treatments are packed with specially tailored massages for both mum and mum-to-be, using mama mio and Aromatherapy Two in every 10 mumsAssociates. After plenty of much needed relaxation, fill your to-be claim they worry their belly or bump with the Ivy partner might miss the birth of restaurant’s fresh cuisine. their baby, according to Spatone. Spa treatments are priced Those with partners in managerial at a reduced rate Sunday to type roles are the most likely to be Thursday and keep an eye on for anxious, so make sure you talk the spa’s offer of the month. to your loved one and put

The brand new baking range at Dealz, launched M&I recently by baking entrepreneur and actress Jane Asher. The whole range is priced at just €1.49 and includes everything from baking sheets and oven gloves to these pastel coloured whisks. A bargain for when nesting begins!




your mind at rest!


Stripe tankini top, €30; stripe bikini bottoms, €16, Next

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Coral swimsuit, €28, Mothercare

Multi-way maternity swimsuit, €55, Seraphine

Mama swimsuit, €19.95, H&M

Pinstripe swimsuit, €36.41, Topshop

22/05/2014 19:18:08

10 News

Mum New

Bags of Style It’s one of this season’s most wanted baby accessories – the Pink Lining Yummy Mummy baby changing bag (€94.95). While it features the necessary changing mat, nappy pockets, insulated bottle pockets and wet pouch, it also keeps mum in mind with the all-important lipstick mirror, key fob and personal pockets.

Mummy milestones Fancy receiving a monthly treat straight to your door? Almondella delivers new and expectant mums with a monthly box of gifts for mum and her bundle of joy. Each box contains up to five products taking mum through all baby’s developmental milestones. Choose a subscription of one, three or six months. Prices start from €45 and are available from www.

Top tips for nappy changing Changing your baby’s nappy is the perfect opportunity for bonding, according to Bepanthen spokesperson and midwife Margaret MerriganFreenan, who offers us her top tips for nappy changing!

On our shopping list... Thrupenny Bits’ brand new nursing covers (€30) are guaranteed to give new mums the extra confidence they need when nursing in public. They come in four gorgeous designs including this pretty pink flock, and fold up neatly so you can take it wherever you go. From www.thrupennybits.

We love... Una Foden’s new collection for Reebok. The Saturdays singer launched her own range of stylish fitness wear recently and is ideal for new mums getting back into a walking or fitness regime. Available from Lifestyle Sports stores nationwide.

of Irish mums and dads would like more quality time to spend with their families, according to HB Hazelbrook Farm. Start planning some fun now!

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✹ Lie baby on a waterproof changing mat. ✹ Hold baby gently by the ankles with your fingers in between his heels and raise legs upward. ✹ If your baby has had a bowel motion, pull down the front of the nappy first and wipe away the bulk of the soiled nappy. ✹ Clean girls from front to back to keep bacteria from the back passage away from the front. Pat the skin dry and allow baby to have a little kick so air can get to the skin. ✹ Lift baby gently by the ankles to slip a clean nappy underneath him. ✹ Ensure the nappy is not too tight; one finger should be able to slide between your baby’s skin and the waistband.

22/05/2014 19:18:54

11 News

Yum, Yum! A study carried out by organic food makers Ella’s Kitchen, has found that babies’ taste buds are more refined than you may have thought. Using a ‘thrill-o-meter’ the top three flavours that excited baby most were mango, cinnamon and lemon! Other top foods included coconut, banana, papaya, red pepper and apricot.

Is the average age a baby begins to crawl but don’t worry if it doesn’t happen at this stage, every baby is different. Here are some of our tips to encourage crawling: 1 Lots of tummy time, this strengthens a baby’s shoulders, arms and torso. 2 Encourage baby to reach for toys. 3 Placing the palm of your hands behind baby’s feet will stabilise baby. Baby can also use your hands to push off. 4 Limit time in baby walkers. Instead provide lots of practice time on the floor. 5 Provide safe space for baby to move around and explore.


Baby The latest fashion, interiors and musthave accessories for your little one!

Six months’ supply of CaldeSpray! One of the best new products of recent times is CaldeSpray, an easyto-use spray-on formula to help ease the discomfort of nappy rash fast. Parents know how heartbreaking it is when your little one’s nappy rash is so bad that she’s wincing with pain when you apply cream CaldeSpray takes that discomfort away. We have six months’ supply (six bottles) of CaldeSpray to give away to two winners! To enter, simply send your contact details to competitions@ maternityandinfant. ie, with CaldeSpray in the subject line. Or send a postcard with your contact details, marked CaldeSpray, to maternity & infant, Ashville Media Group, Old Stone Building, Blackhall Green, Dublin 7.

Sitting pretty From bouncer to fully functional high-chair to childhood chair, Stokke’s new all-in-one seating system (€351) really will last a childhood.

Treat with therapy M&I

Lily & Sid sunsafe suits, €45, Arnotts. Don’t take any risks when it comes to protecting your baby from the sun. Sunsafe suits give complete coverage and peace of mind for mums.

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Is your baby having problems with crying, restlessness, colic, wind and digestive disturbances; sleep problems, feeding difficulties or misshaped head? Read up on the benefits of paediatric craniosacral therapy, it may be just what your baby needs and the answer to your prays.

Wipe and clean

Pampers new sensitive wipes have soft grip texture and are 15 per cent thicker (the thicker the better for those lovely surprises found in nappies regularly). Pampers sensitive wipes are endorsed by the skin health alliance ensuring they are safe on baby’s skin.

27/05/2014 09:24:38

12 News

Large Water Gun, €2, Penneys

Circus Tipi Tent, €20, IKEA


Giant Ludo Game, €7, Tiger Stores


The good weather is the perfect way to get kids playing outdoors and there are plenty of ways to keep them occupied out there!

Qwikfold Fun Slide, €34.99, Smyths

Catch a ball set, €4.99, Argos

Balancing Bench, €50, IKEA

Fresh & Fun Arcade, €27.99, Imaginarium

ELC Sand & Water Table, €59.99, Mothercare

Peppa Pig Wendy House, €27, Littlewoods Ireland

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22/05/2014 19:21:37

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14 News

Kids’ Corner M&I

On our shopping list…

A treat from the new Lego Juniors range, which is designed to bridge the gap between Duplo and the main Lego range. We love the Police Big Escape set, €29.99, which is challenging enough for young builders and should keep them happy for hours!

Protect delicate skin An essential for your holiday bag is Caldesun SPF50, which contains UVA, UVB and IR-A (infrared) protection filters. Suitable for children with neurodermatitis, Caldesun is water resistant and contains no PEG emulsifiers, perfume, artificial colours or preservatives. The spray, which is easy to apply even on the wriggliest of toddlers, costs €8.49 from pharmacies nationwide.


The new aprons (€17 each) from Messy Me, are perfect for baking or painting during the summer. From www.

Travelling with toddlers Going on a long journey with a toddler? Try these tips to avoid tantrums and headaches! ✹ Bring lots of toys and snacks Always bring twice as much as you think you might need. For toys, bring along a selection of old and new toys. A picture book or a lacing board are easy to keep a small child amused without making a mess. ✹ Meet the physical needs first Remember that a child is more likely to have a meltdown if she or he is thirsty, hungry or tired. Make sure these needs are met first and foremost. ✹ Have plenty of breaks Bring along a ball so your child can let off some steam while on a break. If your journey coincides with naptime, have a break and a snack before getting back into the car for their nap. ✹ Gauge their mood If you think a tantrum is brewing, distract them with a story or a game. It’s far easier spending a few minutes with them than to spend half an hour calming down a screaming child. ✹ Play the game Bring lots of energy with you and be prepared to play games along Not sure where to go? the way. Count the number of red/blue cars, spot the animal, or for older kids, I Spy, are Check out p51 for our family easy to play and engage all small children holiday guide, plus tips immediately.

Kids on the move Keep your kids occupied with this clever Penguin Play Pack, which is big enough to carry all their favourite toys and books. The bag features a hard front panel that cleverly zips down to form a handy tray that is stable enough for drawing on. The Play pack costs £29.99 from

For more

on preventing travel sickness.

of the best

Sandals for kids

Pink bow sandals, €9.95, H&M

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Glitter sandals (3-14yrs), €35.95, Zara

Step2wo white sandals, €71.50, Brown Thomas

Ladybird boys sandals, €19, Littlewoods Ireland

27/05/2014 09:26:00

15 News

3years+ Don’t Call Me Sweet! By Smriti Prasadam-Halls, illustrated by Angie Rozelaar (Bloomsbury Children’s Books), €10


Books reviewed by Anne Whelton and Linda Crosbie. PICK OF THE PILE

Dylan’s Amazing Dinosaurs: The Tyrannosaurus Rex By E.T. Harper, illustrated by Dan Taylor (Simon and Schuster), €8.65

Do you remember when you were little and desperately wanted to be a grown-up so that you could stay up past your bedtime and eat icecream for dinner? Well that’s just the dilemma the little monster in Smriti Prasadam-Halls’ new book faces. Everyone thinks that little monsters are cute and cuddly, but this little monster wants to prove that he’s a ‘real’ monster. He’s not sweet, he’s grumpy and grouchy and not afraid of anything. That is until he meets something that’s really scary! We like … The simple rhyming text They’ll love … The little monster’s big adventure

5years+ The Rain Door By Russell Hoban, illustrated by Quentin Blake (Walker Children’s Books), €10

0-2 years Say Hello Like This! By Mary Murphy (Candlewick Press), €15.75 Little ears love learning new sounds, particularly when they come from some of their favourite animals and Mary Murphy’s latest book, Say Hello Like This!, has plenty of animals to choose from. Full of funny adjectives and words, this charming companion to Murphy’s 2012 release, A Kiss Like This, is an ideal read-aloud for the very youngest of listeners and is sure to engage babies as they first learn to talk. We like … The linguistic skills it helps your toddler develop They’ll love … The bright illustrations and sounds

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The best children’s books are, and should always be, about the power of imagination. The most beautifully illustrated book in the world can’t compete with the fantastical images a child conjures up in his or her own head when reading a book, nor should it try. And while The Rain Door is indeed beautifully illustrated, it is in the fantastical story that this book really excels. Originally published in the late 1980s – but just recently reissued for a whole new audience to enjoy – The Rain Door tells the story of a boy named Harry and his fantastical trip to another world behind the weather. The perfect book to get young minds creative juices flowing! We like … The fantastical story – a classic then and now They’ll love … Creating images in their own imagination of what lies behind the rain door

While everyone loves dinosaurs, not everyone is lucky enough to travel back in time to see the real thing. You can see E.T. Harper has a particular fondness for the creatures too, as he outlines his wishful adventures in his new book, Dylan’s Amazing Dinosaurs: The Tyrannosaurus Rex. Reading this particular story, you’re transported to Dylan’s very own treehouse where he keeps his magic journal. Everytime he opens it, exciting things happen – including his toy pterodactyl coming to life! It’s the perfect story for a child with a fun imagination. We like … The action-packed adventures They’ll love … Exploring and learning all about dinosaurs

For more book reviews, recommendations and interviews with some of your favourite authors and illustrators, visit

classic read We’re Going on a Bear Hunt By Michael Rosen, illustrated by Helen Oxenbury (Walker Children’s Books), €7


Few can deny the endearing quality of We’re Going on a Bear Hunt, and while it’s celebrating its 25th birthday this year, it could just as easily have been published yesterday as in 1989. With its methodical chant-aloud text and delicate illustrations of a family of brave ‘hunters’, We’re Going on a Bear Hunt is the perfect addition to any children’s bookshelf and will be read and cherished over and over again, as it has been by children for a quarter of a century. We like …The ‘importance of family’ theme in the book They’ll love … Chanting along with the family

22/05/2014 19:25:40

16 Mummy My Way

“I was 21, a

single mum

and living on social welfare. Now I’m a midwife, happily married and

mum to three amazing children.”

Bronwen O’Malley, 28, is about to qualify as a midwife, lives in Galway with her husband John, and is mum to Juliette, Georgia and James.


y parenting story began at just 20 years old, when I gazed at that second pink line and knew life was about to change forever. I moved home to live with my father and as my little baby grew, so did my interest in pregnancy, labour and birth. I read every book I could get my hands on, and armed with this knowledge, I opted to breastfeed and wanted no intervention in labour. On Valentine’s Day, after a harrowingly beautiful natural labour, I locked eyes with my first true love, Juliette. Like many first-timers, our breastfeeding start was rocky. But bleeding nipples, mastitis and three antibiotics later, we found our dance. My tiny darling and I became a duo when she was three months old and my relationship with her father came to an end. I was 21 years old, a single mother, on social welfare and with no Leaving Cert. When Juliette was nine months old, I moved to Leitrim to live with my sister. It was there I found a FETAC course that would gain me entry to university. The transition from preconception to motherhood is incredible and so I decided to train as a midwife. I knew it wasn’t going to be easy – an hour journey each way daily, dropping my baby at a crèche along the way, late nights studying, preparing meals for her when I probably should have been asleep - but I was becoming someone new, someone of whom she would be proud. Eight distinctions later, I secured myself a place at NUI, Galway. Things were looking up! Even more so, when I met the man of my dreams. John was a natural father, and his patience, humour and selflessness amazes me. During the first year of my midwifery training, I became pregnant with our second daughter. Assignments and exams are a lot harder when you throw sleep deprivation into the mix! In the summer of 2010, the blonde bombshell that is Georgia arrived and she was just as amazing as her sister. In 2013, John and I got married. I started my nine-month

MI June-Jul 2014_Mummy My Way.indd 16

placement as a midwife the day after my honeymoon and it wasn’t long until our third bundle was on the way! James arrived in cold November and brought a new fire to my soul! Three babies later I discovered there was a label for how I parented: attachment parenting. As I snuggle down with my boy each night, his tiny warmth against my body on one side, and my husband on the other, we all embrace the label “co-sleeping”. I have tried other methods to settle my baby, including the ‘cry it out’ method, but it went against every fibre of my being. James is five months old now and growing more independent. As I watch him detach a little farther from me each day, I am proud he has become trusting of this world, but then why wouldn’t he? His life experience to this day has taught him that his safe haven will never be too far away because I am here. My experience in the past eight years has taught me a lot and I feel I have a lot to offer to other mothers, so my friend Rachel and I have set up a breastfeeding support group for local mothers in the Connemara area. Next month I will complete my degree in midwifery and will begin working with Neighbourhood Midwives Ireland, a brand-new midwifery service that allows me to be the kind of midwife I want to be, outside of the usual hospital setting. Supporting mothers is so important to me. Until recently we had no books or internet to tell us when our babies should sleep, crawl, eat or walk; we just followed their leads. In this information-flooded society, we’ve disempowered mothers. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not always rainbows and butterflies. I have days where I count the hours until bedtime, but I do try my best to be a good example for them so they can learn to do the best for their children and the generations that follow.

23/05/2014 11:56:19

The product most recommended by pharmacists for scars and stretch marks. Retail pharmacist study, 2013

UK’s No.1 selling scar & stretch mark product.

“The one thing my pregnant friends and I discussed at length was stretch marks once you’ve got them, they’re there for good! I used Bio-Oil throughout, morning, noon and night... in fact, I haven’t stopped using it since Liam’s birth. Now that I’m pregnant with twins, I’m going to be using it more than ever! What’s also nice is that it’s not oily. You’ve no idea how many friends and family I’ve told about Bio-Oil!”

IRI, 2013

Tracy with Liam

Bio-Oil® helps reduce the possibility of pregnancy stretch marks forming by increasing the skin’s elasticity. It should be applied twice daily from the first trimester. For comprehensive product information, and details of clinical trials, please visit Bio-Oil is available at pharmacies and selected retailers at the recommended selling price of 110.99 (60ml). Individual results will vary. Distributed in the UK and the Republic of Ireland by Godrej Consumer Products (UK) Ltd.

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23/5/14 09:49:22 14/05/2014 15:59:25

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23/5/14 09:56:54 22/05/2014 12:09:14



Style Jade green waterfall cardigan, 39, Paisley maternity top, 41.50, White denim maternity

Summer is finally here (if we’re lucky enough to get one) and hopefully most of you will be heading off somewhere nice in the coming weeks. So we’ve got a jam-packed, totally revamped fashion fix to help fill your summer maternity wardrobe. Check out our summer essentials in sweet sorbets, take some inspiration from this month’s Steal Her Style star Kristin Cavallari, and follow our trimester trends where we show you how to wear a tea dress at every stage of your pregnancy. Best of all, our looks are sourced from the high street and easy on the pocket!

skirt, 58.80, Seraphine

MI June-Jul 2014_Fashion Opener.indd 19

23/05/2014 11:57:42

20 Trend


Trimester trends

6 9

Loose fitting dresses are perfect in summer heat, no matter what the trimester. Match with these accessories to create a look that will keep you cool and suit your burgeoning bump.






Accessorise with jewellery for a boho look







On trend beauty buy 4 5 3 4 5

6 6





7 9

7 8

Wide foot sandals are easier on swollen feet 1 White daisy stud earrings, €2, River Island 2 Rita round brow bar sunglasses, €16.59, Accessorize 3 Daisy smock dress, €48, ASOS 4 Milk and honey nail polish, €9.29, Topshop 5 Eden capri, €26, Dorothy Perkins 6 Faux pearl bracelet, €11.24, ASOS 7 Edi skinny jeans, €38.99, Missguided 8 Ted Baker bown leather bow belt, €82.87, ASOS 9 Quilted plimsolls, €25, River Island

MI June-Jul 2014_Maternity Trends.indd 20

1 Cubic zirconia hand chain, €18.50, Topshop 2 Leah three-strand necklace, €9, 3 Denim jacket, €29.95, H&M 4 Happy floral flippy dress, €44, Topshop 5 Firey island nail polish, €8.95, Sally Hansen 6 Quilted double-zip cross-body bag, €11.99, New Look 7 Chunky strap platform sliders, €29.99, New Look

1 Dew drop chunky earring, €14.17, Accessorize 2 Red stone ring pack, €12, Miss Selfridge 3 Loose fit trench coat, €89.95, Zara 4 Red floral dress, €38, Next 5 Mini city bag, €49.95, Zara 6 Vibrant red/orange (424) lipstick, €13, INGLOT 7 Covered buckle belt, €14, Next 8 Marathon leather loafers, €49.16, ASOS

27/05/2014 12:08:00

21 Trend 1 Kaftan: Cover-ups are essential. A maternity kaftan is light enough to keep you cool, easy to pack and offers plenty of coverage.

12 2

11 3

Summer Sorbet Dress your bump in these on-trend candycoloured summer essentials



Salina jacket, €365.25; Messina trousers, €111.82; ruched cami, €42, Isabella Oliver



8 7


Necklace: Add a statment necklace to rev up a day outfit, making it ideal for an evening or a meal out on your holidays.

1 Mama blouse, €14.95, H&M 2 Maternity lace bodycon dress with ribbon, €50, ASOS 3 Round brow sunglasses, €21.46, Topshop 4 Sequin beach tote bag, €39.90, Accessorize 5 Flower cover necklace, €24, Miss Selfridge 6 Mama chino shorts, €19.95, H&M 7 Light pink block heel barely there sandal, €55, River Island 8 Kapture espadrilles, €59, Office 9 Big felt floppy hat, €36, Topshop 10 Maternity pale pink Leigh jeans, €48.24, Topshop 11 Broderie front t-shirt, €22, Next 12 Ombre Kaftan, €12, Penneys.

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22/05/2014 19:46:50

22 Trend L’Oréal Rouge cancan, €7.69, Boots

Leather-look t-bar sandal, €9.99, New Look

steal her

Style Looking for some maternity inspiration? Take it from Kristin Cavallari. This look is cool, chic and most importantly, comfortable

Zahara silk maternity maxi dress, €404, Isabella Oliver

E! Fabulist co-host Kristin Cavallari gave birth to her second son, Jaxon Wyatt, on May 7th. Kristin recently came under fire for refusing to vaccinate her children based on fears of a link between childhood vaccination and autism. Kristin’s bump has been a source of inspiration for her edgy print dresses, chic maternity shirts and our personal favourite, maxi dresses. We love this Isabella Oliver dress because it can be worn both during and after pregnancy.

Wash denim jacket, €57, Topshop

Cream quilted purse, €17, River Island

Getty images

E! Fabulist co-host Kristin Cavallari

MI June-Jul 2014_Steal her style.indd 22

Double cross gold ring, €7.50, Dorothy Perkins

27/05/2014 09:27:17

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24 Trend








7 6

Make a statement Even the smallest of people can make the biggest statements and there’s no stopping them now that the typography trend has made it as far as our kids’ wardrobes. From adorable phrases to cheeky slogans, the word is out (quite literally) and just in time for summer! 1 Jealous t-shirt (0-6yrs), €13, mamas and papas 2 Queen of Rock t-shirt (12mths-12yrs), €14.95, United Colors of Benetton 3 Two-pack statement t-shirts (4mths-2yrs), €6.95, H&M 4 Love to Dance t-shirt (3mths-6yrs), from €9, Next 5 Boy’s dark grey t-shirt (18mths-6yrs), from €8.75, Debenhams 6 Leigh Tucker Willow boy’s top (4-9yrs), €14, Dunnes Stores 7 Baby’s statement baby gro (0-6mths), €30, Babes with Babies 8 Mum Rocks t-shirt (3mths-6yrs), from €9, Next 9 Green statement t-shirt (12mths-12yrs), €22.95, United Colors of Benetton

MI June-Jul 2014_Todd Typography.indd 24

23/05/2014 12:03:50

25 Trend

Baby’s first holiday From sun-safe swim suits and party dresses to waterproof nappies and the all-important beach hats, we’ve got all your summer style essentials sorted for your little one’s suitcase. Summer party dress (0-3yrs), €31.99, Frugi

Sunsafe beach set (3mths-6yrs), €25, Next

Ladybird cheeky monkey vest 5-pack (0-24mths), €10, Littlewoods Ireland

Baby sun hat twopack (0-18mths), €9, pumpkin patch

Baby boy sun hat (0-12mths), €12.50, Monsoon

Baby heart print top (0-3yrs), collection ranges from €8, River Island Mini Striped summer vest (0-6yrs), €13, mamas and papas

Frill denim shorts (0-18mths), €15.50, pumpkin patch Pink daisy swim nappy (small-XL), €9.95, Bambino Mio

MI June-Jul 2014_Todd Essentials.indd 25

Trunki suitcase, €54, Littlewoods Ireland

Cargo baby boy shorts (12-18mths), €19.50, pumpkin patch

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26 Trend

Boys boat print t-shirt (2-6yrs), €11.50, mamas & papas

Navy stripe top (4-9yrs), €14, Dunnes Stores

ABOVE: Sailor role model t-shirt (1-12yrs), €9.95 BELOW: Polka dot shorts (1-9yrs), €13.95, both United Colors of Benetton

Tutto Piccolo baby girl (3-18mths), €29.95, McElhinneys of Donegal

Baby boat neck dress, Frugi, €19.99

Ahoy there

sailor From cute boat prints to sailor-inspired t-shirts, nautical-inspired outfits are always on trend.

Baby boy sailor set (4mths-2yrs), €12.99, H&M

Stripey long-sleeve t-shirt (2-9mths), €12.95, name it

Boat printed skirt with vest (18mths3yrs), €34.50, J by Jasper Conran at Debenhams

Baby boat neck dress (0-24mths), €19.99, Frugi

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22/05/2014 19:52:37

Advert Template.indd 1 231199_1C_EUROBABY_JR_M&I.indd 1

23/5/14 09:50:40 20/05/2014 13:02:31

Breathe easily! Nature’s way to wash away allergens and congestion

Hypertonic Spray & Nasal Cream now available Use the power of sea water to help clear and unblock noses naturally Available in your local pharmacy through Intrapharma Consumer Health Advert Template.indd 1 229737_STERIMAR_1C_M&I.indd 1

23/5/14 09:51:21 19/05/2014 10:12:46

29 Features


Inside Peaches Geldof once said she wanted to be a “good wife, a good mother, a good person,” something we all relate to. She seemed to have finally found meaning in her life by becoming a young mother, despite her obvious demons. Her recent passing spurred us to discuss her style of parenting, attachment parenting, which is seen by some as controversial. Also in our features section this month, we look at the surprise that comes with sudden births, the issue of stuttering in children and how to help your child deal with a separation. We also have the low-down on staying fit while pregnant, your crucial hospital bag contents and the final installment of our First 1,000 Days series. Don’t forget about Dad this Father’s Day (that’s June 15th by the way), and when you’re finally ready to take a break from it all, check out our special holiday feature for travelling with your tots.

MI June-Jul 2014_Feature Opener.indd 29

22/05/2014 19:56:37



Hospital ... what you bag really need One of the first big jobs you need to do when pregnant is prepare the contents of your hospital bag – that’s when things get REAL! We look at what you need to know, and get the inside track from mums who have been there.


n your first appointment at the hospital, you would have been handed a long list – what you should pack in your hospital bag for B-Day. This list is packed away until you reach the latter stages of your pregnancy and you suddenly realise that you really need to get your bag ready. Then, when you start looking at the various bits you need, the reality of giving birth really hits home! It’s exciting and nerve-wracking in equal measure! To help make the job a little easier, we’ve answered some of the most common questions about packing your hospital bag, supplied you with a definitive list for you and baby, and asked some of our maternity & infant Facebook users for their top tips.

When should I pack my bag? It’s never too soon to be prepared, and it’s recommended that you have some sort of basic bag packed by the time you’re 32 weeks’ pregnant, or earlier if you’re expecting twins or are considered high-risk. Mums who end up in hospital earlier than expected stress the importance of being prepared – lists given to partners or family only go so far!

MI June-Jul 2014_Hospital Bagl.indd 30

How much should I bring? This is a bit of a balancing act. Make sure you have everything you need, but don’t over-pack as maternity hospitals are usually fairly crowded places and there’s little storage space. Many mums recommend bringing the minimum of clothes for you and for baby, and then making sure that extras are in a convenient place at home, so your partner or a relation can bring them in as needed.

What about a labour bag? It’s a really good idea to pack a separate bag for the labour ward. This should contain one to two button-down nighties (be prepared to throw these away, as they may get destroyed!), a light dressing gown, slippers, socks, big knickers in a dark colour, maternity pads, a dark towel, a bottle of water, snacks, a hair bobbin and a camera. Include a see-through plastic bag for the baby, containing a vest, sleepsuit, hat, scratch mittens and nappy.

What about the main bag? Bring a carry-all or case the same size as hand luggage for a flight. This can contain the basics for

you and for baby. Handy things to include are a few packs of newborn vests and sleepsuits for your baby. It’s quite common for new babies to spit up a lot, so you might find that you go through a lot of these in the early days. A couple of newborn hats and scratch mittens are also essential. Bring one pack of nappies and have a couple of packets at home to be brought in as needed. The one big essential for you is disposable knickers – or, even better, get a couple of packets of cheap knickers in as large a size as you can find – and maternity pads. Loose pyjamas or nightdresses that open at the front are also essential for breastfeeding. A spare plastic bag for sending home washing is also a good addition.

Going home Remember that you and baby will need clothes to wear when going home. Pack a bag with your clothes and your baby’s first outfit and put it with the car seat (another essential!) for your partner to bring into the hospital when it’s time to go home.

23/05/2014 12:07:26


You Say All the usual stuff, plus face wipes and hand wipes because if you have a C-section you won’t be able to get out of bed for a while. Jennifer Carthy Plastic bags so you can give your partner dirty clothes to take home to wash. Also, dry shampoo as you mightn’t want to wash and dry hair. Denise Reck A face cloth for the delivery suite. The midwife gave us a jug with ice and water in it and my husband used it with the face cloth to cool me down. Dee Morgan

Polka Dot Print Flip Flops, €1.50, Penneys

Flip-flops: great for the shower. Try not to pack too much, there’s a lack of space if you are public and your partner can always bring extra stuff in after the baby is born. Clare Gibbons

Big knickers or, better still, men’s boxers; dark towels and nice, loose pyjamas – preferably with dark bottoms. Julieann Farrell I brought a CD of my fave music for the labour ward. My husband put it on and it really helped. Noeleen McKnight Face cloth and moisturiser because the heat will dry out your skin. Bottles of water because it’s thirsty work! I brought lavender essential oil for my pillow and loved it. Oh, and mints! I was quite sick but the mints kept my mouth feeling fresh. Joanne McCarthy

Sleepsuit, 3 Pack, €10, Heatons

MI June-Jul 2014_Hospital Bagl.indd 31

Get a few packs of oversized underwear that will go over your belly button. I really found these helpful when I had my section. Nothing too dear or nice as you will probably

throw them out afterwards. Have a bag at home with extra maternity pads and breast pads and make sure your partner knows where they are. Bring loads of babygros and vests as your little one likes to be refreshed, plus small towels to give a C-section wound a run over with water and just to dab dry (my wound leaked and the nurse wanted to check it). Kathy Fitzgerald Arnica tablets to take after the birth for a few days. Nice shower gel and body lotion – that shower after having the baby is bliss! The hospitals are generally very warm so a light dressing gown is enough. Loads of babygros in both newborn plus 0-3 months in case baby is too big for newborn. Plenty of Vaseline for those beautiful first day nappies. A few pairs of nice PJs and La Maison slippers for yourself de Senteurs and everything else Fleurs de that makes you feel Lavande good! Have some tea Hand & Body tree oil handy for when Lotion, €7, you get home. A few Marks & drops in the bath helps Spencer any stitches heal. Fiona McGee Not an essential, but certainly nice to have: flushable toilet-tissue wipes like Andrex or Kandoo. Believe me, dry toilet tissue can be not so nice in the early days! Audrey de Lacy Lawless

The Man Bag

I packed a T-shirt, underwear and deodorant for my hubby as I was a lonnnngggg time in labour with an emergency C-section and he had to stay at night to help with feeding. Brid Howard

LEFT: Autograph 2 Pack Hipsters, €23, Marks & Spencer, RIGHT: Mens grey sports perfromance t-shirt, €15, Dunnes Stores

23/05/2014 12:08:10

32 essentials

Packing checklist In your hospital bag:

WaterWipes sensitive makeup removal wipes, €3.49

All In the


✹ Three cotton nightdresses or loose

pyjamas ✹ Two maternity bras ✹ Breast pads ✹ Nipple cream

Ready to get packing? Here are just a few of our essential picks!

✹ Two packets of maternity pads ✹ Dark-coloured towel and face cloth ✹ Light dressing gown and slippers or

flip-flops ✹ Six pairs of old or disposable

underwear ✹ Shower gel ✹ Shampoo and conditioner ✹ Toothbrush and toothpaste ✹ Deodorant ✹ Cleanser and moisturiser ✹ Make-up ✹ Hairbrush and bobbin

Midnight blue button down nightie, £28, Seraphine

Maternity bra, €26, Mothercare

✹ Phone and charger ✹ Magazine or book ✹ Notepad and pen ✹ Coins for parking, snacks etc ✹ Witch hazel to soothe stitches

In your labour bag:

Burt’s Bees Baby Bee Getting Started Kit, €19.95

Disposable breast pads, €5.99 for 80, Mothercare

✹ Copy of birth plan ✹ Details of any medication/hospital


Jasper Conran for Tripp Hydrangea Wheeled Tote, €156, Debenhams

✹ An old nightgown ✹ Light dressing gown and socks ✹ Clean nightwear for after the birth ✹ Hair bobbin

Blanket, from a selection, Mothercare

✹ Lip balm ✹ Bottle of water and snacks ✹ Facial mist spray

Obi TENS pain relief machine, €59.99, Mothercare

✹ TENS machine ✹ Camera ✹ MP3 player ✹ Toiletries and towel ✹ Nappy, vest, babygro, hat and scratch

mittens for baby

In your baby’s bag: ✹ Six long-sleeved babygros or

sleepsuits ✹ Six vests ✹ Bibs ✹ One pack of disposable newborn

Born in 2014 sleepsuit, €10, Next

La Roche-Posay Thermal Spring Water, €4

nappies ✹ Two cardigans ✹ Two hats ✹ Two pairs of scratch mittens ✹ One blanket ✹ Two soft baby towels ✹ One baby sponge ✹ Nappy cream ✹ Cotton wool

MI June-Jul 2014_Hospital Bagl.indd 32

Bepanthen nappy care ointment, €8.63

Black towel, from €3, Penneys

23/05/2014 12:08:45

Cutting their first teeth...

...often means a disturbed time for babies. Teething rarely causes real problems, but even irritated gums can affect your baby significantly. Baby may be more restless, crotchety, cry more and sleep poorly. In addition, you may observe a loss of appetite.

The first teeth emerge, but without disturbance.

CaldeBaby Teething Gel allows you to help your child: gently massage your baby's gums 2 to 3 times a day with the teething gel bought in your pharmacy. The best times are after meals and before sleeping. CaldeBaby Teething Gel cools and soothes irritated gums and provides gentle care of the baby’s mouth. In addition, it is sugar-free and has a pleasant honey flavour.


Gently massage a pea-sized dab of gel onto the gum using a clean finger or a cotton bud when needed. Always read the label and package leaflet before use. Contains camomile Pleasant honey flavour Cares for baby's sensitive gums Cools and soothes irritated gums Sugar Free


A Division of Clonmel Healthcare Ltd, Waterford Rd, Clonmel, Co. Tipperary •

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07/05/2014 11:55:26


EXERCISE FOR TWO Apart from the sticky area of nutrition, nowhere is there more confusion than the topic of exercise in pregnancy. What is the difference between enough and too much? Should you stop altogether just to be safe? Baby Body Fit founder STEPH SINNOTT, who is pregnant with her second baby, sorts the facts from the myths.


ongratulations on your pregnancy! Depending on how many weeks you are, you could be feeling exhausted and fit for bed, or full of energy and delightfully happy. Either way, you may be thinking of what, if any, exercise that you can do during these 40 weeks. Firstly, let’s see what the experts say. According to the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, “In the absence of either medical or obstetric complications, pregnant women can adopt the current American College of Sports Medicine recommendation of 30 minutes or more of moderate exercise on most, if not all, days of the week”. Pregnant women are realising more and more how important physical exercise is to not only their health, but the health of their unborn baby. Many women want to keep up some sort of exercise routine, and even women who have never done much exercise before feel the need to start something during their pregnancy.

Body benefits The benefits of exercise during pregnancy speak for themselves. Provided your midwife or GP has given you the go-ahead to continue, there is no reason why you can’t keep up a light level of fitness throughout your pregnancy. Some of the many benefits of exercise during pregnancy include increased energy levels, better quality of sleep, and that great feeling you get after a workout. Building muscle and keeping up a level of cardio fitness will help you avoid excessive weight gain during pregnancy as the more muscle you have, the higher your metabolism becomes. In turn, this also helps to avoid gestational diabetes. Exercise also helps prepare you for the later stages of pregnancy and you may not feel as tired towards the end. It can alleviate back pain by strengthening your

MI June-Jul 2014_Fitness in Pregnancy.indd 34

legs to help you carry the extra weight of the baby and amniotic sac, instead of your lower back doing all the work. It will also help strengthen you for all the other baby paraphernalia you’ll have to carry after the birth! A strong body and strong mind can help prepare you for labour, and endorphins produced during exercise are proven to lower stress. Exercise keeps your spirits up, improves your self-image and will help you regain your body after childbirth faster. Building up a high metabolism, eating healthy and looking after yourself all help you to get back into those pre-pregnancy jeans quicker and easier.

Safety first Once you are past the 12-week stage, you can now look at beginning an exercise routine. This should be a light exercise regime – now is not the time to get super-fit and lose weight! Having said that, it is better to exercise regularly. Two to three times per week is good, as opposed to sporadically. Your body is better accustomed to exercise if it is used to it often. Make sure you have cleared with your doctor or midwife that you are okay to exercise, and always listen to your body. If you feel weak, light-headed, dizzy or unwell, stop straightaway and take a rest. Make sure you warm up for at least five minutes beforehand and, if you feel you are overheating, slow down. Don’t lie on your back for longer than 30 seconds, as a growing baby can lie on your vena cava and slow blood flow to the heart, causing dizziness. Get up from the floor slowly, rolling onto your side first. Getting up too fast can put strain on your stomach muscles. Don’t stretch your arms above your heart or have your arms overhead for too long as this can cause dizziness. You must be careful not to overstretch, too. Re-

22/05/2014 20:02:22

35 fitness

MI June-Jul 2014_Fitness in Pregnancy.indd 35

22/05/2014 20:02:42

36 fitness


laxin, the hormone which relaxes your joints and muscles, is present in your body during pregnancy and stretching too much can cause a muscle to tear. After your workout, cool down for at least five minutes and make sure you stretch but, again, don’t overstretch.

It may seem like there are so many things to

What to avoid

avoid but, don’t worry, there are still lots of

I try to encourage women to keep up some level of fitness during pregnancy, as it is important to be active for your health. However, there are many exercises you should completely avoid. Any activity that will raise your heart rate too high should be avoided. If you are very out of breath, you probably shouldn’t be doing it. You should also avoid any activity that will make you sweat too much. You heat from the inside out, so your baby will be very warm! Avoid any jumping or bouncing exercises and make sure you have one foot firmly on the floor at all times. Don’t attempt any abdominal exercises, especially sit-ups. This can cause diastasis recti, the separation of the abdominal

Quick Guide

What to do

exercises you can do! ✹ Walking: one of the best ways to keep fit during pregnancy ✹ Swimming: water supports your joints and creates resistance for strength ✹ Aqua aerobics: make sure you inform the instructor that you’re pregnant ✹ Light aerobics routine: just remember to keep one foot on the floor at all times ✹ Strength routine using dumbbells or Dyna-Bands: make sure to keep your arms below shoulder height, and don’t raise them above your heart

wall, which is very hard to reverse. Step aerobics aren’t suitable for pregnant women as your balance is thrown and it’s easy to fall off the step. Cycling after the second trimester is to be avoided for the same reason. There is a big debate around running or jogging during pregnancy, but I would recommend stopping. It is a high-impact exercise and can have a reverse effect on all those pelvic floor exercises you should be doing. Muscles and joints begin to get soft at around 20 weeks, so running can cause pain. Above all, you should adapt your regular exercise routine and listen to your body. Stephanie Sinnott is a personal trainer and the founder of Baby Body Fit, which runs classes for pregnant and new mums around the country. Stephanie is currently blogging about her diet and exercise routine during her pregnancy. Read her blog or find a class near you at www.

Kit out in style Don’t resort to the baggy T-shirt and men’s trackie bottoms – get some comfy maternity sportswear to get you in the mood for exercise. These pieces are so comfy that they’re perfect for just after the birth, too!


Vest, €4, Penneys

Eating for two?

Let’s remove a pregnancy myth for good: you are not eating for two! You’re eating for you and a tiny baby, who does not require a huge amount of extra food. The recommended daily amount for a woman is 2,000 calories.

Water bottle, €8, M&S

In the first trimester, you will need no extra calories per day. This goes up by 200-300 extra calories in the second trimester, and 300-500 in the third. Most pregnant women end up

Azzurri 2 Stripe Trainers, €20, Heatons

eating five to six small meals per day, as your stomach gets full quickly.

Hat, €16, Accessorize

Get your extra calories in the form of a healthy Slogan Vest, €14, Mothercare

snack or two, such as: ✹ Two slices of wholegrain toast ✹ Banana and peanut butter ✹ Cheese and crackers ✹ Berries and natural yoghurt ✹ Nuts and seeds ✹ Any fruit with milk ✹ Fruit smoothie ✹ Tuna and Ryvita ✹ Carrots and hummus

Black cuffed trousers, €30, Mothercare

Nike bag, €36, Elvery Sports Wraparound sunglasses, £20, www.

✹ Cereal or granola bars ✹ Cereal, fruit and milk No matter what workout you do, remember to listen to your body, stick to what you feel comfortable with, and have fun!

MI June-Jul 2014_Fitness in Pregnancy.indd 36

22/05/2014 20:03:18


NEEDED log on to: for more information


27/5/14 12:19:20

38 Birth


T babyis in a Hurry Many pregnant women dread the thought of hours – even days – of labour, but an extra-fast birth can be just as frightening. ARLENE HARRIS finds out what happens when baby is even more impatient to arrive than you are to meet her.

MI June-Jul 2014_Sudden Births.indd 38

here comes a time towards the end of every woman’s pregnancy when she longs for her baby to be born and for her cumbersome bump to disappear. But, despite the impatience of waiting for D-day (or B-day, rather) to arrive, no one wants their newborn to make her way into the world suddenly and without warning. For a small number of mothers, however, this is exactly what happens when they experience a sudden, precipitous birth days or even weeks before the baby is due to arrive. Helen O’Connor from Dublin gave birth to her third child en route to the hospital and credits the fast thinking of her normally squeamish husband for ensuring both mother and baby survived the ordeal. “My first child arrived on his due date and

22/05/2014 20:04:55

39 Birth my second was a few days early. Although I was expecting a similar sort of arrival for my third, I was totally unprepared when, ten days before my due date, I suddenly went into labour while my husband [James] and I were on our way back from doing the weekly shop,” she says. “Thankfully, our older children [aged eight and six] were at school when we were heading home from the supermarket. Suddenly, I got a sharp pain and initially thought it was just a Braxton Hicks contraction. But then I got another and they started coming together really quickly. “I told James that I was in labour and, although he thought I was joking at first, he could soon see by my face that I was far from kidding!” When James realised his wife was actually in labour, the accountant turned the car around and started heading back into the city towards the maternity hospital. But Helen’s contractions were coming too fast and it soon became clear that they wouldn’t make it to the hospital in time. “I was in really serious pain and knew there was no way we would get to the hospital in time to deliver the baby, so James pulled over into a lay-by and got me into the back seat,” she recalls. “He rang an ambulance and, even though he can’t even stand the sight of blood, he took a deep breath and decided to help our baby be born.

your initial instinct is to panic and get really stressed out, if you can try to be calm, it will make things a lot easier – because, as people keep telling me, giving birth is the most natural thing in the world.” Tracy Donegan, midwife and author of The Irish Better Birth Book, says sudden births are not an everyday occurrence but they do happen when women are least expecting it, and both mother and baby need to be well cared for after the event to ensure both are healthy and well. “Lots of mums fantasise about having short labours, but this kind of birth can be very intense and quite frightening as the sensations can feel like one long contraction instead of having a resting period between them,” she says. “This kind of birth is known as a precipitous birth and is usually defined as a labour lasting less than three hours, but only two per cent of mums will experience it. “Unfortunately, it’s difficult to predict in a first-time mum. It’s something that just happens to some women and is more likely if mum has had a previous precipitous birth.” The midwife and gentle birth facilitator says that while most babies who are born suddenly will be healthy, there are associated risks to both the mother and her new infant. “Most full-term babies born quickly have no complications, but the hospital or midwife will generally observe the newborn

“While your initial instinct is to panic and get really stressed out, if you can try to be calm, it will make things a lot easier – because, as people keep telling me, giving birth is the most natural thing in the world.” “He was brilliant and was really calming but, luckily, the paramedics arrived quite quickly and were there to actually deliver our daughter and cut the cord. I was then taken back to the hospital to be checked out. “Thankfully, we were both fine and the obstetrician said that James did a great job of ensuring I was safe, comfortable and, above all, not panicked – even though he told me afterwards that he was completely and utterly terrified!” Giving birth in the car isn’t something the 34-year-old would recommend, but Helen says the experience brought her and her husband closer together. “Going into labour like that was really scary and it’s not something I would wish on anyone else, but in a strange way I’m glad I went through it as it created a really nice bond between James and I and it’s a great story to tell our grandchildren. “If I could give any advice to other women going through this, I would say that while

MI June-Jul 2014_Sudden Births.indd 39

more closely for the first 24 hours as he or she may be a bit ‘shocked’ from the experience,” she says. “Also, some babies may need extra stimulation to encourage them to breathe and the new mother may have more perineal injury as the tissues haven’t had time to stretch and expand before the actual birth.” While little can be done to predict a precipitous labour in a first-time mother, if a woman has a history of speedy deliveries, precautions are usually put in place to minimise the risk of another occurrence. “Some maternity units will recommend an early induction to avoid an unplanned outof-hospital birth, but induction also comes with risks and should be discussed thoroughly,” Tracy advises. “Some mums will opt for a home-birth but we are likely to see more roadside births in Ireland if smaller regional maternity units are closed in the future, as mums will have greater distances to travel.”

what to do The American College of Nurse-Midwives has a step-by-step plan for women who give birth before help arrives:

1 2 3

Stay calm. Know that babies who arrive quickly usually deliver with ease. Guide baby out as gently as possible.

If the umbilical cord is around your baby’s neck, either ease it over her head slowly or loosen it enough to form a loop so that the rest of her body can slip through. When she’s fully out, don’t pull the cord, and don’t try to tie off or cut the cord. Leave it attached to your baby until help arrives.


Stay where you are until you deliver the placenta, which should arrive shortly. Leave the placenta attached to the cord, too. Medical personnel will take care of it.


Dry your BABY immediately, then rest her on your tummy, skin-to-skin, and warm her with your body heat. Cover yourself and your baby with a dry blanket.

6 7 8

Ease mucus or amniotic fluid from her nostrils by gently running your fingers down the sides of her nose. If your baby doesn’t cry spontaneously, stimulate her by firmly rubbing up and down her back. While you’re waiting for medical help, try to get your baby to breastfeed – but only if you can keep the umbilical cord slack, not taut (sometimes, if the placenta is still inside you, the cord won’t be long enough to allow you to bring your baby to your breast). Besides offering comfort and security, this will prompt your body to release more oxytocin, which will help the placenta separate and be delivered.


After the placenta is out, keep feeding to help your uterus continue to contract – a well-contracted uterus is necessary to keep bleeding in check. If your baby won’t nurse right away, manually stimulate your nipples to release the hormone.


After you deliver the placenta, firmly massage your uterus by vigorously rubbing your belly right below your navel. This will help your uterus contract and remain contracted.

Address book For more information visit:

22/05/2014 20:05:08

40 Parenting

Attachment parenting fad or the future?

The subject of attachment parenting has raised some emotions over the years – most famously in the debate between the late Peaches Geldof and Katie Hopkins on This Morning – but what’s it all about? PHOEBE DOYLE investigates.


hen you become a parent for the first time, it can be quite overwhelming learning all the theories and approaches to parenthood that exist. There appear to be so many divides and arguments that go on between people and groups, all of whom believe that their way is best. Parenting can be enormously challenging at times, and these debates can sometimes add pressure and confusion. Attachment parenting has certainly received its fair share of attention over the last couple of years. Praised by many for its natural and instinctive methods, yet dismissed by others as utter nonsense or ‘new-age’ pushover parenting, this divisive topic certainly sparks enormous emotion from both sides. The underlining theories of attachment parenting date back as far as the 1960s, when well-respected psychologist John Bowlby wrote on the detrimental effects separation can have on young infants and the importance of secure attachments. But it’s in more recent times that the debate surrounding this method has been widely covered in the press and discussed in parenting circles. The attachment parenting theory stipulates

that babies and young children should be kept physically close to their mother (or caregiver) at all times in order to ensure their needs are met immediately. Some might say the interest has been a natural reaction to the stricter approaches visible in recent years, for example Jo Frost’s Supernanny programme with its famous ‘naughty step’ and the infamous Gina Ford books. In attachment parenting there would certainly be no controlled crying or ignoring of tantrums – it’s all about letting your little one know you’re there for them and that you will cater to their needs. More than 30 attachment parenting groups have now sprung up around the UK and Ireland, while a dedicated Facebook site has gathered 1,500 followers in its first few months.

What is attachment parenting? As the name suggests, physical contact plays a big role in attachment parenting. Proponents believe that touch meets a baby’s needs for physical contact, affection, security, stimulation, and movement. Skinto-skin contact is seen as vital, such as during breastfeeding or baby massage. Carrying your baby in a sling can also meet this need whilst

“With attachment parenting, you can rest assured that you are doing everything you can to help your child succeed in their own subsequent relationships.”

MI June-Jul 2014_Attachments.indd 40

23/05/2014 15:28:08

41 Parenting

MI June-Jul 2014_Attachments.indd 41

23/05/2014 15:28:42

42 Parenting

Need to know Attachment parenting’s most famous fan The late Peaches Geldolf impressed many a viewer when she argued her view of attachment parenting against the adamantly dismissive and always controversial Katie Hopkins on ITV’s This Morning. For many, whatever their views on Peaches, her crowning and most memorable moment was this one, when she put Katie firmly in her place through intelligent, heartfelt and passionate reasoning. Mother-oftwo Peaches described this style of nurturing as “a return to instinctive mothering”. “It’s just about loving your child,” she said.

The seven Bs These are the rules of attachment parenting as devised by Ask Dr Sears ( ✹ Birth-bonding: Ideally, a natural birth with plenty of skinto-skin to follow in the hours and days afterwards ✹ Breastfeeding: Believed to be the best, nutritionally, and for physical comfort and attachment ✹ Baby-wearing: Allowing the baby more time in the warm arms of their parent ✹ Bedding close to baby: Co-sleeping is seen as a way of regrouping after busy days ✹ Belief in the language of the baby’s cry: Responding sensitively and quickly to a cry helps to build trust ✹ Beware of baby trainers: There’s wariness about training your baby for short-term, timesaving goals ✹ Balance: Don’t neglect the needs of yourself and your relationship

MI June-Jul 2014_Attachments.indd 42

Why I became an attachment parent

Hannah Robertson explains her thinking behind attachment parenting


think many mums out there will empathise with my first birth experience at the beginning of motherhood. I came to a hospital in a place of trust and was whisked through a conveyor belt of interventions stripping me of any instinct, leaving me in a state of shock with a baby to look after. This is where I began my motherhood journey, with so much advice that left my insides shouting ‘No’. Health visitors could only share what went against my inner wisdom. ‘Cry it out’, ‘top him up with formula to make him gain weight quicker’, ‘leave him and have a night out’ is amongst some of the advice given. Yet, without a perfect support network, I carried him in less-than-perfect slings and was sad that he was a child who could not fall asleep on me. With my second child, who gracefully joined this world at home in a birth pool, mothering was different. It was easier and led by what felt best. All my children (I now have a third) have been born into the world with love. My aim as their mother is for them to feel secure and loved as, in life, what more could you want but a sense of purpose and feeling of being loved? The science behind attachment parenting is that human babies are born less mature than other mammals. In the wild, if we put our babies down and did not carry them or wear them in a sling, they would be at risk from predators. I love the closeness of our breastfeeding relationship, which gives much needed quiet and stillness in a crazy, busy toddler world. I love snuggling him in a sling now just as much as I did when he was a tiny baby. Life moves fast and babies grow so quick. Why would you not want to hold your child as close as you can in this special, ever-changing time?

out and about, so many parents choose to use slings instead of pushchairs. Dr Fin Williams, leading psychologist and founder of Parent Perspectives (www., is a fan: “It really can work for anyone! You don’t have to practice all the ‘rules’ [see The seven Bs] to develop a good, strong attachment relationship. These are just suggested ways

to help you learn more about how your baby communicates.” Dr Williams compares the fundamentals to how you might come to understand when your partner is upset by the way that they move, or stand in a certain way: “You came to know this by enjoying spending time with them – being physically and emotionally close to them. Attachment parenting speaks to essentially the same things.”

Dr Williams says the pros are vast: “With attachment parenting, you can rest assured that you are doing everything you can to help your child succeed in their own subsequent relationships, because their template of relationships comes directly from their relationship with you. What’s more, they’ll reap the rewards in their self-development, growth, exploration, failure, selfesteem, and even in their economic success – because this world is built on relationships after all.”

A more balanced view?

Whilst the benefits are clear, there are some who worry that such strongly argued approaches can have potential for harm. Self-proclaimed parenting expert Sue Atkins (www. is keen to ensure that parents don’t feel pressurised: “It’s vital that parents learn to trust their instincts, rather than follow one strict ideology or another.” Sue says it’s about finding what’s right for you and your family, adding, “What works well for one child might not for another. The worst thing new parents can do is get involved in friendship groups where one parenting style is seen as superior to another. It’s all a very individual choice based on individual circumstance.” Sue says that the parenting style you employ will, obviously, also change as your baby does. “It’s natural to not want to allow your newborn to cry and to go to them immediately, but, when a two-year-old is half-heartedly crying for something they’ve been told they can’t have, it’s vital we don’t attend to their every whim without hesitation.” For more information on attachment parenting in Ireland visit www.attachmentparenting. eu/ireland.

27/05/2014 13:43:20

42 Parenting

Need to know Attachment parenting’s most famous fan The late Peaches Geldolf impressed many a viewer when she argued her view of attachment parenting against the adamantly dismissive and always controversial Katie Hopkins on ITV’s This Morning. For many, whatever their views on Peaches, her crowning and most memorable moment was this one, when she put Katie firmly in her place through intelligent, heartfelt and passionate reasoning. Mother-oftwo Peaches described this style of nurturing as “a return to instinctive mothering”. “It’s just about loving your child,” she said.

The seven Bs These are the rules of attachment parenting as devised by Ask Dr Sears ( ✹ Birth-bonding: Ideally, a natural birth with plenty of skinto-skin to follow in the hours and days afterwards ✹ Breastfeeding: Believed to be the best, nutritionally, and for physical comfort and attachment ✹ Baby-wearing: Allowing the baby more time in the warm arms of their parent ✹ Bedding close to baby: Co-sleeping is seen as a way of regrouping after busy days ✹ Belief in the language of the baby’s cry: Responding sensitively and quickly to a cry helps to build trust ✹ Beware of baby trainers: There’s wariness about training your baby for short-term, timesaving goals ✹ Balance: Don’t neglect the needs of yourself and your relationship

MI June-Jul 2014_Attachments.indd 42

Why I became an attachment parent

Hannah Robertson explains her thinking behind attachment parenting


think many mums out there will empathise with my first birth experience at the beginning of motherhood. I came to a hospital in a place of trust and was whisked through a conveyor belt of interventions stripping me of any instinct, leaving me in a state of shock with a baby to look after. This is where I began my motherhood journey, with so much advice that left my insides shouting ‘No’. Health visitors could only share what went against my inner wisdom. ‘Cry it out’, ‘top him up with formula to make him gain weight quicker’, ‘leave him and have a night out’ is amongst some of the advice given. Yet, without a perfect support network, I carried him in less-than-perfect slings and was sad that he was a child who could not fall asleep on me. With my second child, who gracefully joined this world at home in a birth pool, mothering was different. It was easier and led by what felt best. All my children (I now have a third) have been born into the world with love. My aim as their mother is for them to feel secure and loved as, in life, what more could you want but a sense of purpose and feeling of being loved? The science behind attachment parenting is that human babies are born less mature than other mammals. In the wild, if we put our babies down and did not carry them or wear them in a sling, they would be at risk from predators. I love the closeness of our breastfeeding relationship, which gives much needed quiet and stillness in a crazy, busy toddler world. I love snuggling him in a sling now just as much as I did when he was a tiny baby. Life moves fast and babies grow so quick. Why would you not want to hold your child as close as you can in this special, ever-changing time?

out and about, so many parents choose to use slings instead of pushchairs. Dr Fin Williams, leading psychologist and founder of Parent Perspectives (www., is a fan: “It really can work for anyone! You don’t have to practice all the ‘rules’ [see The seven Bs] to develop a good, strong attachment relationship. These are just suggested ways

to help you learn more about how your baby communicates.” Dr Williams compares the fundamentals to how you might come to understand when your partner is upset by the way that they move, or stand in a certain way: “You came to know this by enjoying spending time with them – being physically and emotionally close to them. Attachment parenting speaks to essentially the same things.”

Dr Williams says the pros are vast: “With attachment parenting, you can rest assured that you are doing everything you can to help your child succeed in their own subsequent relationships, because their template of relationships comes directly from their relationship with you. What’s more, they’ll reap the rewards in their self-development, growth, exploration, failure, selfesteem, and even in their economic success – because this world is built on relationships after all.”

A more balanced view?

Whilst the benefits are clear, there are some who worry that such strongly argued approaches can have potential for harm. Self-proclaimed parenting expert Sue Atkins (www. is keen to ensure that parents don’t feel pressurised: “It’s vital that parents learn to trust their instincts, rather than follow one strict ideology or another.” Sue says it’s about finding what’s right for you and your family, adding, “What works well for one child might not for another. The worst thing new parents can do is get involved in friendship groups where one parenting style is seen as superior to another. It’s all a very individual choice based on individual circumstance.” Sue says that the parenting style you employ will, obviously, also change as your baby does. “It’s natural to not want to allow your newborn to cry and to go to them immediately, but, when a two-year-old is half-heartedly crying for something they’ve been told they can’t have, it’s vital we don’t attend to their every whim without hesitation.” For more information on attachment parenting in Ireland visit www.attachmentparenting. eu/ireland.

23/05/2014 12:12:02

43 opinion


MILK addict CLIODNA GILROY, breastfeeding advisor with NUK Ireland and mum of two, talks about what to expect when preparing to breastfeed your first baby and offers some vital advice on expressing too much at first.


ne thing I particularly like about my job is when wide-eyed mothers-to-be come to see me with their own mothers and tell me that they hope to breastfeed but are not sure what to expect. I always like to prepare them for the day they come home from hospital. This is very often the same day that your milk comes in and you have, what I describe as, a chest of which Dolly Parton would be jealous. At this point, you can see the grandma cross her arms as memories forgotten for about 30 years come flooding back! Whether you choose to breastfeed or bottle-feed, this happens to most new mothers and I like to think that to be forewarned is to be forearmed. I’m not what you would call flatchested and hadn’t expected this to happen to me, but it did. Breast gel cushions are the order of the day and, straight from the fridge, will give cooling relief from this engorgement. I only wish I’d learned that sooner. If any of you were at the Pregnancy and Baby Fair in Dublin or Cork in April, you may have met me at my breastfeeding advice stand. I love these events as I meet so many women that are planning to breastfeed and I always tell them to shout out for help if they need it. What I have noticed is that most expectant mothers want to know, not about latches or engorgement, but about breast pumps and when to express. The first rule of thumb is, if you have a successful latch, then please give your body four to six weeks to get into a rhythm with your baby before you start using a breast pump. Sometimes you may need to express sooner – this happened to me due to Oisin’s inability to latch at the beginning. I went home with the intention of express-

ing and feeding him breastmilk through a bottle for six weeks, and so Dublin Dairy was started up in my very own home. I expressed bottle after bottle of milk, sure that my 7lb baby would urgently need 7oz of milk per feed. This led to oversupply, pained nipples and a freezer full of breast milk that, a year later, I had to pour down the drain of the sink. Expressing is addictive and, because you can’t measure exactly how much your baby drinks, many mothers are inclined to express too much rather than to risk running out of milk when they are away from their baby. I can understand why so many mothers want to know about expressing. It is easy to see this as a step on the road back to a normal life, the chance to get out for a night, leave the baby with family, and give Daddy a chance to feed the baby. The reality, when you meet your little one, is you won’t want to go out for the first few weeks. You’ll realise there is more to going out and leaving the new love of your life than how many bottles there are in the fridge. There are ways to let the whole family get involved and, by all means, let Daddy take charge at bath-time. Plus, anyone who is willing to change a nappy is a hero in my book (we’re in the depths of toilet-training at the moment, so it’s a touchy subject!) and you don’t feed 24/7, so there are always moments for cuddles. I promise that my next instalment is about breast pumps and expressing, but try not to become a ‘milk addict’ as soon as you come home from the hospital. For the first few weeks, just enjoy getting into the swing of something that only you can do for your bundle of joy. It’s amazing – honest!

“Expressing is addictive and, because you can’t measure exactly how much your baby drinks, many mothers are inclined to express too much rather than to risk running out of milk when they are away from their baby.”

MI June-Jul 2014_Breastfeeding.indd 43

23/05/2014 12:10:53

44 The First 1,000 Days

The Toddler Years 635-1,000 Days Part III of III

In the last of our three-part series on the importance of nutrition during the first 1,000 days of a child’s life, LISA JEWELL looks at the toddler years and how to introduce new foods to your growing child.


n our last issue, we looked at nutrition during baby’s first year of life – the importance of breastfeeding and how to introduce baby to new foods during the weaning period. In this final part of the series, we take a look at the toddler years (between one to two years of age). When baby turns two, this marks the end of the first 1,000 days of his nutritional health and, as we’ve seen in the previous parts of this series, this period has far-reaching effects on a child’s development and longterm health.

Knowing what to do When it comes to the main things that parents need to consider for the diet of a child aged one to two years, they’re operating in a little bit of a vacuum. Dr Mairead Kiely, senior lecturer in human nutrition at University College Cork, says: “We have no local dietary recommendations for that age group. We’ve very little to work with other than guidelines for complementary feeding, otherwise known as weaning. “When it comes to this age group, parents are very much working in the dark. They are hungry for clear, evidence-based

MI June-Jul 2014_1000days.indd 44

Need to know Some top tips for your toddler’s diet and health ✹ “Eat together as a

family,” says dietitian Niamh Brannelly. “Make meal-times relaxed and happy.” ✹ “Children tend to copy their parents so you should eat the foods that you’d like your toddler to eat. Praise your toddler when he or she eats well or tries a new food. Toddlers take time to learn to like new tastes and treats.” ✹ You should also get active and encourage physical activity every day to counteract the chances of your little one becoming overweight. Try to limit foods such as crisps, cakes and biscuits to very small amounts and avoid fizzy drinks and sugary juice drinks. You’ll also want to make sure your toddler is getting plenty of fruit and vegetables every day.

recommendations for their child’s diet. It’s difficult for parents because they want to do their best to provide a healthy diet for their child.” The amount of evidence internationally on paediatric nutrition is small, although Australia and the US have both made good efforts on this front. There isn’t a huge amount of research on the topic in Ireland and, while we can take heed of dietary recommendations from other countries, we shouldn’t be relying on them as they may not exactly apply to our population. Dr Kiely gave a talk recently entitled ‘Diet and health of infants and young children – is there a gap between science, belief and feeding?’ “The point I was trying to raise through the talk is that we need to have evidence in order to formulate recommendations. It’s important not to come out with statements that we don’t know for sure as there isn’t the evidence there. “For instance, obesity in childhood comes up as an issue but we have limited data on the predictors of obesity in children – how body weight tracks through life – and, apart from the National Preschool Nutrition Survey, we have a limited knowledge of under-fives.”

What do we know? The National Preschool Nutrition Survey (which was published in 2012 and can be found at is currently the best source of nutrition and dietary data on under-fives in Ireland. Another source of information is the Cork BASELINE birth cohort study, which is charting the progress of around 2,000 infants born at Cork University Maternity Hospital from before they were born. Dr Kiely is involved in this research. The BASELINE study is currently focusing on the first two years of children’s lives and is looking at things such as tracking and monitoring of body weight, diet and nutrition in relation to growth and body size, and the effects of poor growth in the womb. One of its findings so far is that Irish mothers are complying well with recommendations that babies be given daily vitamin D supplements, with 80 per cent of those in the study doing so. More findings will be published in due course and it’s hoped that the study will be extended.

22/05/2014 20:14:38


YOUR TODDLER’S DIET While there isn’t a huge amount of research out there or on local dietary recommendations for this age group, the National Preschool Nutrition Survey has given some useful information on the diets of under-fives.

IRON “Some 23 per cent of one-year-olds and ten per cent of two-year-olds were estimated in the survey to have inadequate intakes of iron,” says Niamh Brannelly, member of the Irish Nutrition and Dietetic Institute and dietitian for Danone Early Life Nutrition. “Iron is the most common single nutrient deficiency. The World Health Organisation estimates that iron deficiency accounts for 40 to 50 per cent of anaemia in children and up to 80 per cent in pre-school children (two to five years old) worldwide. “Studies on iron status in infants are limited but research suggests that, in Europe (including Irish data), 7.2 per cent of infants at 12 months old are iron deficient with 2.3 per cent having iron deficiency anaemia.” Iron intake is particularly crucial during periods of rapid growth because of its role in cell development. It’s essential for brain development and has an important role in the immune system. So, how can you make sure your toddler is getting enough iron? “Dietary iron exists in two forms: haem (found almost exclusively in meat) and non-haem sources,” says Niamh. “Haem iron is two to six times more available for absorption from the diet than non-haem iron.” Sources of haem iron include meat (red meat contains more than meats such as chicken and turkey), oily fish (salmon, mackerel, sardines etc) and eggs. Non-haem iron absorption can be improved if taken with a source of vitamin C. Non-haem iron comes from sources such as fortified breakfast cereals, growingup milks, wholemeal cereal foods (such as pasta and rice), green leafy vegetables, peas, beans and nuts.

VITAMIN D Vitamin D is needed for bone development and to prevent rickets (skeletal deformity). There’s also

MI June-Jul 2014_1000days.indd 45

increasing research to show that vitamin D has other long-term health benefits. The National Preschool Nutrition Survey found that daily intakes of vitamin D were quite low with 70 to 84 per cent of one to four-yearolds consuming less than the recommended 5µg and 17 to 25 per cent of them had intakes of less than 1µg. Vitamin D is sometimes called the sunshine vitamin – the main source is synthesis in the skin from sunlight. In recent years, parents have quite rightly been concerned about making sure their child’s skin is protected from sun damage but this can also have a knock-on effect on their vitamin D levels. Gloomy winter days in Ireland also mean everyone’s vitamin D intake is curtailed. “Very few foods naturally contain vitamin D,” says Niamh. “Oily fish – including salmon, herring, mackerel, sardines and fresh tuna – are the only significant sources. Eggs and meat provide very small amounts.” Nonetheless, some foods and growing-up milks are fortified with vitamin D and parents can also consider dietary supplements for their toddlers.

SALT The National Preschool Nutrition Survey showed that children under five are consuming much more than the average daily salt intake recommended for their age group. Meat, especially cured and processed meat, is the main contributor to salt intake. While meat is a good diet choice for protein and iron intake, you should balance this with the fact that some meats contain a significant level of salt. See and www. for more information.

23/05/2014 12:13:20

46 development

Stammering what you can do Stammering is a common phase among children aged between two and four – but what happens when it goes beyond a phase? DR NICOLA DAVIES explains how you can tell when stammering is normal and when professional help is needed.


tammering – sometimes called stuttering or disfluency – is not uncommon for children aged between two and five. It usually signals that the child is learning to use language in new ways. Stammering may come and go – in fact, it is normal for children to go through periods of fluency and disfluency. When disfluency disappears after several weeks and then returns, it can indicate that the child is going through another stage of learning, is experiencing excitement, or feels “rushed” to speak. Most children naturally grow out of stammering, but for some, this may not be the case. As a parent, it is only natural to feel concerned when you notice your child stammering. However, when is stammering a real cause for concern? According to the Irish Stammering Association, stammering (or stuttering) is the term used to describe a difficulty in the timing and even flow of speech. In other words, it is a disruption in the normal pattern of speech. It usually occurs in early childhood, but disappears at around the age of five. Stammering can take on many forms, such as the repetition of sounds and syllables (“Mu-mumu-mummy”), prolonging of sounds (“Mmmmmmmmum-

MI June-Jul 2014_Stuttering.indd 46

my”), and pausing or blocking (no sound comes out or words get stuck). “Blocking” happens when the child’s mouth is in the right position to utter the word but no word comes out. Interjections like “um,” “well,” or “like” are sometimes used to delay the utterance of a word that the child is having trouble with. The exact cause for stammering is still unknown, but experts agree that it is a combination of many factors. Recent studies have shown that genes play an important role as stammering seems to run in families. Many children who stammer are found to have a close family member who also stammers or who used to stammer as a child. Stammering is also believed to be triggered by developmental factors. During the preschool years, children’s vocabulary increases and they begin to learn many of the grammatical rules of language. When language skills are not developed enough to allow them to express thoughts at the speed they want to, stammering occurs. However, this becomes less common as development progresses and they learn to speak fluently. Environmental and psychological factors can also influence stammering. These include the parents’ attitudes and expectations, the listeners’ response to the child’s stammering, and events in the

Need to know The Signs While it is not always possible to determine if a child’s stammering will turn into a serious problem, there are certain things that might raise alarm bells: ✹ The child’s stammering has lasted for more than six months ✹ It continues after the child is five years old ✹ Stammering is accompanied with muscle tension in the face and upper body ✹ The voice rises in pitch with repetitions ✹ It interferes with the child’s schoolwork ✹ The child has a fear of places and situations

If you notice any of these, it is best to visit a speechlanguage pathologist to have your child evaluated.

child’s life. The fear and anxiety associated with stammering can aggravate the problem.

How do I help my child? As a parent, you can do a lot to help your child cope with stammering. Here are a few ideas: Use a smooth, relaxed rate of speech when talking to your child. Modelling slow and relaxed speech will send the message that there is no need to hurry when speaking. Encourage family members to take turns talking and listening. A strong support system will help any child deal with stammering. Pause a second or so before responding to your child’s questions. By doing so, you set the pace of the conversation. Limit the number of questions you ask your child. Children talk more readily when they are expressing their thoughts rather than when they are just answering questions. Let your child know that you are listening to what is being said rather than how it is being said. Your facial expression can convey many emotions, so be sure you use it to let your child know that you are interested in what he or she has to say. Also show that you are not bothered by any difficulties with speech. Comments like “slow down” or “let’s try again” can cause unnecessary frustration and make the problem worse.

23/05/2014 12:15:53

47 development


What should I do if I notice my child stammering? ✹ Maintain eye contact ✹ Do not finish their sentences for them ✹ Convey that you are listening to what is being said, not how it is being said ✹ Model slow, relaxed speech


Ways to encourage your child to speak ✹ Say that it’s OK to stammer ✹ Try to make it clear that stammering does not bother you ✹ Provide opportunities to talk ✹ Praise your child for talking


Where can I get help? There are many resources available to help you deal with any concerns you might have about your child’s speech. Those listed below are worth a visit/ read: ✹ Irish Stammering Association

for advice and details of parent support networks;

Dedicate some time to give your child your undivided attention, and listen to anything that is on their mind. Spending quality time with your child is a great way to help build self-confidence and make them feel special. During this time, let your child decide which activities to do and give them the choice to talk or not to talk, as they wish.

MI June-Jul 2014_Stuttering.indd 47

Do not be frustrated or upset if the stammering gets worse. Remember that your child is trying to cope with an experience that is difficult and stressful. A patient attitude is the best way to provide support. When your child appears to be upset or frustrated about the stammering, reassure and comfort them. Tell your child that sometimes it can be hard to talk and

that it is completely normal. This will relax them and help them overcome the problem. Make sure that your child feels accepted. The most powerful way to help a child overcome stammering is to let them know that they are loved and accepted just as they are.

Phone: (01) 872 4405

✹ Action for Stammering Children - www. stammering - a charity dedicated to transforming the lives of children who stammer ✹ Helping Children with Stammering, by Jackie Turnball and Trudy Stewart, Sheldon Press

23/05/2014 12:16:10




KNEW BEFORE BECOMING A DAD Nervous about being a dad? That’s only natural. But the good news is that being a father is only natural too, says RAY WALSH, dad to Aoibhe, 10, and Liam, 7, who gives us his ultimate advice to first-time fathers…


y now you will have realised that there is no fail-safe guide to becoming a dad. All the manuals – while mostly written and directed at the women who tend to buy them – deal mainly with the ‘mechanics’ of parenting. There are books published for expectant fathers, but they try so hard to be blokey that it’s difficult to recognise who they are aimed at. You won’t have realised it, but you’ve learned so much already about being a dad during your partner’s pregnancy. When she grew tired and couldn’t make it as far as the kitchen, you made that cuppa, right? (You did make that cuppa, right?) When her iron levels dropped, you grilled that steak to perfection and bought out the supermarket’s supply of spinach, yes? The point I’m trying to make is that being a father

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is all about being supportive and loving. If you can stand there and watch the woman you love go through what seems like – and often is – unbearable pain and offer her your hand to squeeze, if you’re more worried about her levels of gas and air than the fact that your fingers have just turned blue, then you’re probably going to do okay on the dad front. You just have to accept that it’s not about you anymore: you’ll be sleep deprived, stressed out and, and at times momentarily, at a loss as to what to do. Just don’t take it personally. A six-week-old doesn’t cry uncontrollably to get one over on you. (There are the teenage years for that.) They just can’t begin to comprehend the monumental process of birth they’ve been through, nor the constant changes to their environment. But they do need you

to hold them and whisper softly in their gorgeous little ears that everything is going to be okay. Do spend as much time as you can with your newborn. You may think there’s no point in being off work for more than a few days after the birth, but you’ll miss out on getting to know your baby and memories you’ll have for ever (and bore your single friends with for years). Your partner has had nine months to get to know your child as it’s grown inside her, so you’ll naturally be less prepared and understandably more nervous about building a relationship with them. Relax and take your time and enjoy perhaps the most euphoric journey of your life. One pointer that has served me the best over my first ten years of fatherhood so far is that there’s no point wasting time trying to be the most perfect dad ever. All you need to be is good enough.


YOU’RE WORRIED; nervous; even scared stiff before the delivery. But all that will disappear like formula milk in the nighttime when you hold your baby in your arms for the first time. It’s a neat trick of Mother Nature to provoke utter devotion to your partner and adoration of your baby by watching the birth.


As an add-on to that – YOU WILL OF COURSE BE AT THE BIRTH. Those scenes from Mad Men of smoking, clueless new fathers sitting uncomfortably in hospital waiting rooms are exactly as they appear – works of fiction.

3 DON’T WORRY  YOU DON’T NEED TO BE A HERO. It’s a law of nature that it is physically and emotionally impossible to change the nappy of a child that isn’t yours.

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49 Father’s Day Special

4 The conversations you have with your mates will never be the same again. Remember the name of that nappy rash cream that seemed to work – one of them will appreciate the tip-off and it’s surprising how discussions of activities such as nappy changing will fill hours of banter at work or in the pub.


Maths changes. Whether it’s long division, carrying over or rounding-up numbers, things won’t look like they did ‘in your day’. And believe me, your child’s teacher won’t thank you for undoing months of hard work in a single, 20-minute homework session.


You will fight back tears, after berating them for ignoring your repeated pleas to put on their school shoes, when they bury their head in your neck and tell you that they love the smell of your scarf. Because it smells of you.


Your Saturday mornings will soon belong to your children (and, most likely, Sunday mornings too.) Swimming, GAA, rugby, hockey… in fact, any sport in which you didn’t participate as a child will soon seem essential for the well-rounded development of your offspring. And, if it weren’t for the distinct lack of ice rinks in Ireland, you’d have them signed up for ice hockey, too. And quite possibly curling.

7 There are such beings as competitive dads. But of course the term won’t apply to you as you scream from the sidelines at the ref, confident in the knowledge that you have a more nuanced interpretation of the offside rule. Just remember that there is no more painful walk of shame than ten paces behind a mortified child.


There is no limit to the number of times in one night that you will go into your child’s bedroom and watch them sleep. Nor any limit to the ways in which they will amaze you just by snoozing contentedly without a care in the world.

10 There’s only one measure of being a good father, or indeed a good mother, and that’s a happy child.

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23/05/2014 10:50:49




4 1 2


20 1 Design notebook, €2, Tiger Stores. 2 Nostalgic Barry’s Tea Mug, €9.95, Green Monkey Designs @ Kilkenny Shop 3 Men’s socks, €10, Dunnes Stores 4 Cute Father’s Day card, €3.75, M&S 5 Great Dad T-shirt, £12, 6 Marvel Menswear T-shirt, €8, Penneys

Spoiling DAD

Make sure your little ones show their dad just how much he’s appreciated with something special this Father’s Day




5 2


50 1 BOSS Hugo Boss Tie, €70, Brown Thomas nationwide 2 Allure Homme Sport Eau Extreme Travel Spray, €77.50 (3 X 20ml), Chanel. 3 Eau d’Arômes, €62 (50ml), Giorgio Armani. 4 Hammond & Co jumper, €60, Debenhams. 5 Madison hat, €78, Christys’ London



5 2



100 1 Full moon cufflinks, €120, Maureen Lynch Jewellery 2 Asics Gel Kayano Mens Runners, €175, Elverys Sports. 3 Tom Tom multi-sport watch, €199, Harvey Norman. 4 Paul Smith washbag, €155, Brown Thomas Cork. 5 Retro black record and CD player, €159, Harvey Norman

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27/05/2014 09:31:01

51 Travel

Staycation summer

Fancy staying in Ireland this summer? You’ll be spoilt for choice with our pick of the best family deals around the country – now all you have to do is choose which one to go for…

Johnstown House Hotel Whether your kid is a dab hand in the kitchen or could sit for hours making paper planes, the kids’ camps at Johnstown House Hotel in Enfield, Co. Meath, has something to entertain every interest. With the camps running from Tuesday to Saturday during July and August, the sophisticated spa hotel makes a brilliant base for an exciting family holiday. The morning camps run from 10am until 2pm and evening camps run from 5.30pm until 9pm with High Tea provided. Programmes change every week with camps tailored to the numbers and ages of the kids participating, with activities such as arts & crafts, baking, movie nights, discos and games. From June to September, the modern two-bedroom apartments at Johnstown House Hotel are available on a self-catering basis from €150 per apartment per night or from €700 for a sevennight stay.

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f the grass seems a bit greener on the Irish shores this summer, then that’s because it probably is. While there are plenty of reasons for jetting off to warmer climates, there are plenty of places to enjoy while staying put in Ireland too. From kids’ clubs and junior golf lessons to outdoor adventures and mini bathrobes, there’s bound to be something to suit the whole family this summer.

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52 Travel

Faithlegg House Hotel & Golf Resort Faithlegg House Hotel & Golf Resort in the sunny southeast county of Waterford is ideally located for families looking for a fun-filled break away. While there’s plenty to do onsite, including a swimming pool and kiddies pool, a kids’ playground, tennis courts and mini golf, there’s plenty to keep you entertained nearby too. The seaside villages of Dunmore East and Tramore are just a short distance away, along with bowling, a cinema and mini-farms to visit too. Two nights’ B&B midweek with an evening meal included for adults in the awardwinning Roseville Rooms, starts from €139 per person sharing. www.

Lyrath Estate Hotel & Spa There’s nothing quite like knowing your kids are in good hands and you can enjoy a family break to the five-star Lyrath Estate Hotel & Spa in Kilkenny this summer with that knowledge, thanks to a free Kids’ Club offered midweek. While mum and dad enjoy some much-needed time off, kids can take part in fun activities, with an option to enjoy an evening Kids’ Club too. Lyrath Estate offers some great facilities during the day, including the use of mountain bikes, a 22-seat private cinema and a games room – not to mention a spa for the adults to indulge in a well-deserved treat. From July 14th until September 7th, three nights’ B&B for everyone (including dinner on one evening for the adults) starts from just €135 per person, sharing a deluxe family room. Children aged four and under stay free on a B&B basis while sharing with adults.

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Preventing Travel Sickness Many children suffer from travel sickness when travelling, especially during long journeys in the car, on a plane or on a boat. But Clonmel Healthcare recommends several ways to help prevent children from experiencing unsettled tummies.

Castlemartyr Resort Fun for the kids is the order of the day at Castlemartyr Resort in East Cork, where little guests not only have their own Kids’ Zone and daily Kids’ Club, but can also enjoy their very own splash time in the indoor pool, and choose from their own menu in the restaurant. The five-star country house hotel is situated in 220 acres of rolling parkland, meaning there’s lots of running space, and is a great place for a holiday at home this summer. For the V.I.Ks (Very Important Kids), the hotel even offer mini bathrobes and slippers, arrival treats and a selection of DVDs to keep them entertained. A full Irish breakfast is included each morning, while summer offers also include dinner on one evening for the adults, as well as family meals on the second and third evening. From May until September, a three-night summer staycation package starts from just €220 a night. www.

On the road: ✹ Get your kids to keep their eyes on the horizon ✹ Don’t let them read ✹ Get them to rest their heads against the seat back and to keep it still ✹ Turn the air vents towards their face if possible In the air: ✹ Ensure they avoid big, greasy meals the night before air travel. Light meals or snacks low in calories are best ✹ Have them avoid salty foods and dairy products before travelling ✹ Seat them toward the front of the aircraft or in a seat over the wing ✹ Turn the air vent towards their face On the sea: ✹ Ask for a cabin on the upper deck or toward the front of the ship ✹ When on deck, get your child to keep their eyes fixed on the horizon or land

23/05/2014 12:19:33

53 Travel

Mount Juliet Country Estate There’s no better way to wear out your little bundles of energy than to organise a fun-packed family break with a daily outdoor adventure in mind. Families staying at Mount Juliet Country Estate can be sure there will be plenty of activities to do together, whether it’s horse riding and trekking or introducing your mini Rory McIlroys to the world of golf with weekly organised junior golf clinics. For the tots, a daily supervised kids’ club, Little Rascals, is held from Sunday to Friday each week. Located just 20 minutes from Kilkenny city, the estate has plenty for adults to enjoy too; a world-famous Jack Nicklaus designed course for the golf enthusiasts; a Michelinstarred restaurant for the foodies; bike rides and woodland walks; and a luxury spa for those in need of some pampering.

Don’t leave home without…


Bridge House Hotel There’s no fear of boredom at the Bridge House Hotel in Tullamore this summer, as the hotel is putting out all the stops to ensure the younger guests are catered for. Midweek three-night specials have been designed especially with kids in mind, with Busy Bees kids’ camps taking place on weekdays. While they’re busy spending time splashing in the pool and making arts and crafts, the grown-ups can make the most of the outdoor hot tub and the spa treatments on offer. There’s also tons to do nearby, with horse riding, a bowling alley and a cinema located just minutes away. The Bridge House Tullamore’s spacious family rooms easily sleep up to five people and cots are available on request. From Monday, July 21st, until Friday, August 15th, three nights’ midweek accommodation, a four-course evening meal for adults and kids; camp each day for two children (aged between six and 12) cost from just €389 in total.

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Ideal for a daytrip, picnic or weekend away, the totseat chair harness (€34.95) ensures your baby is harnessed safely and comfortably into an adult chair. It adapts to securely fit all shapes and sizes, meaning it will prove a very handy tool when out and about. Plus, it’s pocket-sized and machine washable too! You won’t forget any of the essentials for your toddler with the whimsical new luggage designs from Trendykid. The 3D Travel Buddies (€50) are the perfect travelling companion for your tot, who can choose between Archie Alien and Popo Parrot. With a zip compartment and garment straps, the mini suitcase also has easy-roll wheels making it a doddle for little feet to pull along! Whether you’re heading for a weekend away with the kids, or making a beeline for a sandy beach overseas, having lunch al-fresco is always a highlight of a summer break. This picnic backpack from Argos (€23.49) is compact, has built-in Acti-cool insulation to keep your food cold, and is ideal for a bite to eat on the go. Unsettled tummies can spoil any journey for both you and your little travel companion. While it’s not always possible to pause the journey, have a pack of Travel Pops at the ready instead (€3.99 for a pack of three). Available in the form of an apple-flavoured lollipop, Travel Pops contain two natural extracts that have a positive effect on little digestive systems – ginger and peppermint. ClonMedica advises that you ensure your child takes their Travel Pop approximately 30 minutes before travelling.


2 3





23/05/2014 08:30:26

54 Parenting

Subtle separation

Separation and divorce can be a long and painful process for all involved, but there are ways to help your children cope and come to terms with the changes in their family life, writes RACHEL MURRAY.


arenting is a very rewarding job but one that can be difficult at times, especially when parents are faced with challenging situations. When parents separate, it is a painful process for children and parents alike, but how parents deal with separation in the initial stages sets the path for how the situation will unfold.

How to tell your children Once a date for separation has been decided, it is important to sit down – ideally with both parents present – and tell your child that you are going to live in separate houses. For some children, they may have noticed conflict at home and separation could come as a relief. For others, it may be a complete shock as it might have been quiet at home and they won’t have suspected anything. “It’s about telling your child age-appropriate information,” says Geraldine Kelly, director of children and parent services at One Family. “‘Mum and Dad are going to live in different houses. We love you very much but we can’t be happy if we live in the same house, and we’ll be happier parents if we live in separate houses.’ Focus it on the child. A child doesn’t need to know what is happening between parents; it’s about what’s going to happen for them.”

Reactions Separation changes the structure of a family, and children will grieve the loss of the daily presence and availability of a parent. It is important to allow a child to express feelings of loss, anger, worry and anxiety. For younger children, there could be bed wetting, toilet is-

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sues such as not going to the toilet, a change in eating habits, bad dreams, a decrease in engagement with other children, or waning interest in play dates. Often, children worry about the parent who is leaving – who will cook for (eg) Dad? Where will he sleep? Will he be safe? If possible, reassure your child where Dad is going to be and how to make contact with him. Ideally, parents should have a plan of what contact is going to be like and discuss this with the child. It is imperative to follow through on the plan because if one parent is not consistent in making contact, it can cause a lot of long-term issues. Trust and separation anxiety could come into play. “It’s very important to watch out for children who say they are fine and parents who insist their children are fine, because anyone that says their child is fine, and doesn’t notice, needs to worry more, the child may be acting in,” says Geraldine.

Effects Separation can have an effect even on newborn babies. Because babies share such a close bond, particularly with their mum, any change in how she is feeling, the baby will feel too. If separation happens during pregnancy, it can cause distress and anxiety about what is going to happen once baby is born. If these feelings continue after birth, it will affect the baby. It is very important for mums to look after themselves, have someone to talk to and avail of counselling if necessary. With support, children can and do adjust successfully to separation. There is no ‘best age’ for separation to happen. Children have

23/05/2014 08:39:15

55 Parenting

“Focus on the child. A child doesn’t need to know what is happening between the parents; it’s about what’s going to happen for them.”

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23/05/2014 08:39:39

56 Parenting

Some dos and don’ts

Geraldine explains that you should ask different challenges and issues to overcome at questions such as ‘When Dad lived with us did each age and developmental stage. While there Mum have a happy face or a sad face?’ If your are no gender differences in how children are child recognises you were unhappy before, affected by separation, boys and girls may help them to realise that both Mum and Dad show distress in different ways. In separation, are happier now – that they have happy faces. parents are so emotionally distraught them“We often say to parents to reselves that they can miss the cues late it back to school by saying, with children. ‘You know that boy Jack who Sometimes, children don’t know you like to play with in school but what to tell their friends at school. available you don’t want to invite him to They may be afraid to have friends Rainbows is a free a play date? Well, that’s a bit like over in case they notice (eg) Dad’s me and Dad. We don’t mind seenot there or ask difficult questions service for children and ing each other and minding you, your child won’t know how to young adults going but, if we had to stay in the same answer. Again, explore this with through a change in house and see each other all the your child – ask, are you going to family, grant-aided by time, we wouldn’t like that.’ Use be able to talk to your friends or is child and family agency a child’s language by relating it to it a secret? A lot of children keep Tusla. their own relationships with their it a secret that their parents have What some children friends so they understand that separated. have said while yes, we can get on, but we’re not attending the best friends.” Transition programme: People often compare separation ✹ “I got the bad feelings to grief. Parents grieve the loss Co-parenting of the family they hoped for, and Take a shared parenting approach out and put the good children grieve the loss of their by continuing your joint role as feelings in” (a seven non-resident parent. By recognparents, sharing the responsibility year old) ising each grieving stage that you as equally as possible. This will al✹ “Before Rainbows, I and your child are feeling, you will low your child to continue to have could only walk slow. be better able to help your child a meaningful relationship with I can walk faster now” (and yourself) successfully move their non-resident parent. (an 11 year old) through the process and eventu“Parents who can put the needs ✹ “I thought it was ally come to accept the change in of children central to the ongobecause I was not circumstance. ing arrangements of co-parenting tidying up that my A study on children’s experiwill provide a safe and healthy parents split up” (an ences during separation by the way forward for their children Children’s Research Centre in as they grow and develop,” says eight year old) Trinity College Dublin, found: Anne Staunton, national director ✹ “Before Rainbows, I “One of the most important isof Rainbows Ireland, a voluntary could only talk to my sues for children was maintaining service for children and young teddy” (a six year old) their contact and relationships people experiencing grief and loss ✹ “Before Rainbows, I with non-resident parents. Chilresulting from the death of somehad all these feelings dren who did not see their nonone close, parental separation or building up inside me resident parents as much as they divorce. and sometimes I just would like, or who had no contact Develop a ‘parenting plan’ and exploded” (a ten year with non-resident parents, were set out how you will jointly make old) more likely to be distressed about decisions about your child, and the separation. share responsibilities and time with the children. A parenting plan can be developed together Questions and/or with the assistance of Small children find separation trained family mediators, or solicitors trained hard to understand, so be ready for questions. in a ‘collaborative law’ approach. Any contact Geraldine has this advice for parents: “Explore arrangements with your former partner should what your child imagines it would be like if be based on the child’s best interests to ensure Dad or Mum was still there. Rather than trying your child is safe and protected at all times. to tell a child the answers, explore the idea with them to find out how they are feeling.”


Do: ✹ Inform the child of decisions that involve him and the reasons why and how they were made ✹ Allow the child a voice in the decisions, if age-appropriate ✹ Give the child the ‘nuts and bolts’ information of the custody arrangements ✹ Let the child know, understand and believe that he is still part of a family – but this family now has two locations ✹ Consider informing the child’s teacher or school of the change in family life so that any impact on social, behavioural, emotional or academic performance or engagement can be met with understanding and support ✹ Establish a new routine for the child and keep promises – a child can see the world as insecure after a break-up

Don’t: ✹ Deny the child contact, time or interaction with his other parent ✹ Place the child in the position of the ‘negative message carrier’ ✹ Say negative information about his parent, grandparents or extended family around him ✹ Overload the child with adult issues or feelings in the absence of another adult ✹ Impose a new relationship or family on the child’s life without discussion, preparation and consideration of the feelings and issues possibly involved

“Children who did not see their non-resident parents as much as they would like, or who had no contact with non-resident parents, were more likely to be distressed about the separation”

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23/05/2014 08:40:11

57 Awards

font is helvetica Neue 95 Black, 54pt

Do you know the best dad in the world? We want to hear about dedicated fathers who go that extra mile. Tell us your story.

Nominations now open. Log on to

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23/05/2014 08:34:38

Growing up with Annabel Making mealtimes tastier, from first foods to family meals

e From th f writer o .1 No the UK’s ng weani guide

Annabel’ BRAND s N E W boo out now!k

To find out more visit annabelkarmel

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23/5/14 09:52:26 21/05/2014 14:49:37




With the seasonal goodies available to us at this time of year, now is the perfect opportunity to get more adventurous with your recipes. When your baby is six months-plus, try to avoid just giving plain fruit and vegetables and get them trying these tasty purée combinations that are nutrient dense and packed full of flavour.

See Over ➽


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23/05/2014 08:49:40

60 Annabel Karmel recipes

Little Stars with Minced Beef Preparation 10 minutes Cooking 25 minutes Makes 3 portions Suitable for freezing

✹ 60g (2oz) pasta stars ✹ 10g (¼ oz) unsalted butter ✹ 1⁄2 small onion (30g/1oz), peeled and finely chopped ✹ 1 small carrot (50g/2oz), peeled and finely chopped ✹ 30g (1oz) celery, washed and finely chopped ✹ 75g (3oz) minced beef ✹ ½ teaspoon redcurrant jelly ✹ 10g (¼ oz) plain flour ✹ 250ml (8 fl oz) unsalted beef stock ✹ 1 teaspoon tomato purée ✹ 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce ✹ ½ teaspoon chopped thyme

Cook the pasta following the packet instructions, then drain. Melt the butter in a saucepan, add the onion, carrot and celery, and sauté for 5 minutes. Add the mince, and brown for 5 minutes, breaking up the lumps with a fork as you stir. Add the redcurrant jelly and sauté for 1 minute. Add the flour, then the stock, tomato purée, Worcestershire sauce and thyme. Simmer for 10 minutes, uncovered. Stir in the pasta.

From page 59

Squash, Salmon and Spinach Preparation: 10 minutes Cooking: 25 minutes Makes: 4 portions Suitable for freezing

✹ 2 tablespoons sunflower oil ✹ ½ small onion (30 g/1 oz), peeled and chopped ✹ 200g (7oz) butternut squash, peeled, deseeded and chopped ✹ 350ml (12 fl oz) water ✹ 225g (8oz) salmon fillet, skinned and chopped ✹ 50g (2oz) baby spinach, washed ✹ 2 tablespoons cream cheese ✹ 1 tablespoon Parmesan cheese, grated ✹ 2 teaspoons chopped dill

Heat the oil in a saucepan. Add the onion and fry for 3 minutes. Add the squash and water. Simmer for 15 minutes, until the squash is soft. Add the salmon and spinach and stir for 3 minutes, until the salmon is cooked and the spinach is wilted. Add the cream cheese, Parmesan and dill. Blend until smooth using an electric hand blender.

MI June-Jul 2014_Karmel.indd 60

Annabel’s Chicken Delight Preparation 10 minutes Cooking 20 minutes Makes 5 portions Suitable for freezing

✹ 1 tablespoon sunflower oil ✹ ½ medium red onion (75g/3oz), peeled and chopped ✹ ½ red pepper (50g/2oz), washed, deseeded and chopped ✹ 75g (3oz) apple, peeled, cored and chopped ✹ 1 medium carrot (100g/3 ½ oz), peeled and chopped ✹ 150g (5oz) minced chicken or turkey ✹ 2 garlic cloves, crushed ✹ 10g (1⁄4oz) prunes, chopped ✹ ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon ✹ 400g (14oz) tinned chopped tomatoes ✹ 150ml (¼ pint) water ✹ 1 teaspoon tomato purée

Heat the oil in a frying pan. Add the onion, red pepper, apple and carrot, and fry for 2 minutes. Add the chicken or turkey, garlic, prunes and cinnamon, and stir until the mince is browned. Add the tomatoes, water and tomato purée. Bring to the boil, then cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Blend until smooth.

27/05/2014 09:36:14

61 Annabel Karmel recipes

Nectarine and Apple Purée Preparation 4 minutes Cooking 10 minutes Makes 2 portions Suitable for freezing

✹ 1 nectarine (150g/5 oz), skinned, stoned and chopped ✹ 1 dessert apple (100g/3 ½ oz), peeled, cored and chopped ✹ 3 tablespoons apple juice ✹ a knob of unsalted butter

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Melt the butter in a small saucepan. Add the fruits and apple juice. Simmer for 8–10 minutes, until soft, then blend until smooth.

Try Annabel’s stage 1 and 2 Organic Baby Purees, inspired by her home-cooked recipes, or her new cooking sauces. Available from major supermarkets.

23/05/2014 08:50:53

62 Baby business

family Baby Elegance is an Irish family business with a strong brand awareness – and a fascinating history. We meet founder and owner Tim Costello, who now runs the Irish success story with his son Gavan and daughter Louise.

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aking pride of place in Baby Elegance owner Tim Costello’s office is a simple blue-patterned baby bag, which, he tells me, is the first bag he ever produced. “I made that in 1982, and I promised myself I would keep it forever as a memento.” Baby Elegance is now one of Ireland’s big success stories, a family business that has grown from small beginnings to current expansion into the UK and even Asia. But despite the success of the business and its big ambitions, Tim has never forgotten his roots and makes sure he stays in control of the whole business. “When I was 21, I decided that I wanted to

Photography: Colm McDermott

keeping it in the

have my own business. I can’t remember who it was, but they said to me, why don’t you go into manufacturing? My father was a pharmacist, and I went down to his chemist and found these ladies’ cosmetic bags. I took a few samples and went down to Hickeys, asked them what they were made of, and bought the materials. I got a sewing machine, taught myself to sew and made a few samples. Arnotts gave me an order, and Roches Stores asked me if I’d make a baby bag – and that’s what introduced me to the baby business.” Tim went on from his first bags to create Brogeens, little fabric shoes for babies. “I was doing 2,000 pairs a week from my bedroom,”

23/05/2014 08:57:36

63 Baby business

Baby Elegance operates from an impressive warehouse in Dublin 15. Pictured: Tim Costello with son Gavan. Below right: Louise Costello. Below left: the new store in Blanchardstown.

ger premises in Blanchardstown, and decided to concentrate on the brand. We still did some manufacturing, mattresses in particular, but I also went out to the far east and Europe and started working with companies to develop new products under our brand specification.” Baby Elegance now offers quite literally everything you need for your baby and growing child, but Tim, who is now joined by his son Gavan and daughter Louise in the business, still oversees the design of each and every item. “We design everything ourselves with the help of our team of designers,” Louise explains. Louise started in the business nine years ago, but it wasn’t her intention to work in the family business at the time. “I graduated with a degree in journalism and media,” she laughed. “Dad offered me a year’s work experience and I never left!” Four years later, Gavan joined his sister. “I drove vans to begin with and then took on the rep job for a few months before coming into the office.” Tim says. “I had women making these in their homes while I cut them. They were so successful in their day, and that’s what really put us on the map.”

Family business Tim went on to create the brand Baby Elegance from these small beginnings, eventually running a factory with 28 machinists manufacturing everything from mattresses and bedding to the ever-successful Brogeens. “In 2000, I decided then that the world was changing and we would have to start looking further afield to remain competitive ,” says Tim. “I sold the factory in the city centre and moved to a big-

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“That was a big decision for us as a company as retail was something we had never been involved in,” says Tim. “We build our reputation on customer service and good quality and packaging,” he continues. “I think the secret to a successful business is seeing what’s next and reinventing yourself. Our big next step is working with some of the larger retailers in the UK such as Argos, House of Fraser, Tesco and Smyths.” The future abroad is bright for Baby Elegance, but at the end of the day, the company prides itself on being Irish and offering the full package for Irish mums and dads. One of their most recent innovations is the Baby Bundle package for just e999, which includes everything you need for a new baby, from its award-winning Beep Twist travel system to a cot bed and bedding to a high chair and bath accessories. “It’s been very popular,” says Tim. “We have it in our own stores in Dundrum and Blanchardstown, Arnotts, Baby Nursery in Cork, World of Wonder stores and various other retailers around the country. We’re also just launching it exclusively with House of Fraser in the UK.” They have two of their own stores – one in Dundrum and one in Blanchardstown. Both stores showcase the huge variety and high quality products they have created, and with retailers stocking Baby Elegance all around the country, not to mention online, the brand is easily available to everyone in the country. Baby Elegance stores are located at 3 Snugborough Road Extension, Blanchardstown/ Coolmine, Dublin 15 Tel: 01 8103775; and Dundrum Village, Dundrum, Dublin 16. Tel: 01 2964302; For online orders and a list of retailers around the country, log on to www.

Reinvention For many mums, the name Baby Elegance really came to prominence four years ago, when the brand opened up its first retail store in Dundrum, Dublin, a huge move for the brand and one that was made possible by the launch of the buggies. “Opening our own store was really about brand awareness,” says Gavan. “We had a lot of independent retailers stocking our goods, but they might only sell some of our products. Having our own shop brought the name Baby Elegance to the forefront and made people realise that we had a full range of products for parents.”

23/05/2014 12:20:53

64 shopping

Marks & Spencer

store directory


Accessorize Stores nationwide; www. Argos Stores nationwide; Arnotts Henry Street, Dublin 1; tel: (01) 8050400; www.arnotts. ie ASOS


Barbour Stockists nationwide; www. Boohoo www. Brown Thomas Stores in Dublin, Cork, Galway and Limerick; www. Butterslip 31 Rose St, Kilkenny; tel (056) 7702502;

nationwide; www.debenhams. ie Dorothy Perkins Stores nationwide; www. Dunnes Stores nationwide; www.


Elverys Stores nationwide

Harvey Norman Stores nationwide; www. Heatons Stores nationwide; www. H&M Stores nationwide;


Cake Lingerie www. Christys’ London


Ikea Ballymun, Dublin 11; tel: 1890 987 938; www.ikea. com Isabella Oliver www.



Dealz Stores nationwide; www. Debenhams Stores

MI June-Jul 2014_Store Directory.indd 64

Kilkenny Stores nationwide; www.


LEGO Stockists nationwide; com Littlewoods Ireland Lifestyle Sports Stores nationwide; Littlelife L’Oréal Stockists nationwide;


Mamas & Papas Stockists nationwide; www.mamasandpapas. com Marks & Spencer Stores nationwide; www. Matalan Maureen Lynch Jewellery Mc Elhinneys of Donegal Ballybofey, Donegal; tel: (074) 9131217; www.mcelhinneys. com Messy Me Missguided www. Monsoon

Stores nationwide; www. Mothercare Stores nationwide; www.


Name it Stores nationwide; www. New Look Stores nationwide; www.newlook. com Next Stores nationwide; Nike Stockists nationwide; www.

Stockists nationwide; www.


Seraphine www. Stokke Stockists nationwide; www. Smyth’s Stores nationwide;


Thrupenny Bits www. Tiger Stores nationwide; www. Topshop Stores nationwide;


United Colors of Benetton Stores nationwide;


Zara Stores nationwide;

Office Stores Dublin;

Penneys Stores nationwide; pumpkin patch Stores Dublin and Cork;

River Island Stores nationwide; www. Sally Hansen



23/05/2014 14:38:29

65 Awards


Voting Categories

Take a look at this year’s People Award categories so you can get nominating that inspirational person in your life! ✹ Miracle Baby sponsored by Sudocrem font is helvetica Neue 95 Black, 54pt ✹ Child Hero of the Year ✹ Mum of the Year sponsored by maxi-cosi ✹ Dad of the Year ✹ Super Sibling of the Year sponsored by SMA Toddler Milk ✹ Grandparent of the Year sponsored by Home Instead Senior Care ✹ Midwife of the Year sponsored by Caldesene ✹ Nurse of the Year ✹ Obstetrician of the Year ✹ Paediatrician of the Year ✹ Public Health Nurse of the Year sponsored by NUK ✹ Pharmacist of the Year sponsored by Johnson & Johnson ✹ Business Parent of the Year ✹ Young Achiever of the Year ✹ Outstanding Achievement of the Year sponsored by Electric Ireland

Voting for the 2014 Baby Elegance maternity & infant Awards is opening in early June - get voting now!

The Baby Elegance maternity & infant Awards have now launched and we are so excited to reveal our brand new website,, and our brand new headline sponsor. Baby Elegance is a fantastic family-run business that makes and designs all of their own baby products and we are so excited to be working with them this year. Once again our primary aim of the awards is to provide you, the parent, all of the information you need when choosing products to buy for your little one from birth. We know that there is nothing like a personal recommendation from another parent and this is exactly what we are offering. From June 9th you can vote on your top products and recommend them to other parents. These products will then be tested parents nationwide. This is your chance to recommend top products while picking up a few tips along the way! We are now accepting nominations in our People Award categories. You can nominate through our website to tell us why you think a special person in your life deserves an award.

Nominate an inspirational person who always goes above and beyond for everyone else or has come through a traumatic time in their lives and manages to keep a smile on their face. For more details on this, visit

MI June-Jul 2014_Awards.indd 65

23/05/2014 09:01:43

66 Competition


nockranny House Hotel & Spa, Westport, is offering a blissful two-night break for you and a guest including a truly delectable dinner on the evening of your choice in the famous La Fougère Restaurant, presided over by awardwinning chef Seamus Commons. Knockranny House Hotel & Spa is polished, comfortable and genuinely welcoming, with a lovely spa, a terrific bar, great food and luxurious rooms. Called ‘an unmissable destination’ by the Bridgestone Guide, Knockranny House Hotel is a proper destination hotel, busy and beloved, where the welcoming atmosphere that begins with the open log fires in the reception hall is carried throughout the property with its antique furniture, excellent spa facilities, superb cuisine and friendly service, creating a genuine sense of relaxed warmth and hospitality. Many guests come back frequently during the year, or year after year, to enjoy every aspect of this exceptional hotel. With an unbeatable combination of great food, fantastic location, luxurious spa and some extraordinary comfortable bedrooms, they certainly don’t make it easy to leave at Knockranny House Hotel! Knockranny House Hotel & Spa, Westport, Co. Mayo, T: 00 353 98 28600, F: 00 353 98 28611, w:

Congratulations to Michelle Fitzsimons from Dublin, winner of our APRIL/MAY competition


A two-night break for two in the stunning

Knockranny House

Hotel & Spa in Westport, Co Mayo

How to Win To be in with a chance of winning this great prize, just answer the following question correctly:

Where is Knockranny House Hotel & Spa located?

Email your answer and contact details to, with KNOCKRANNY in the subject line. Or send a postcard with your answer and contact details, marked KNOCKRANNY, to maternity & infant, Ashville Media Group, Old Stone Building, Blackhall Green, Dublin 7. Maternity & infant competition Terms and Conditions: Closing date for all entries is July 20th 2014. Prize is nontransferable. Competition is not open to employees of Ashville Media Group or Knockranny House Hotel & Spa. No cash or gift card will be awarded in lieu of stated prize. If any of the items offered are unavailable or out of stock, a suitable alternative will be provided. Winner will be selected at random from a draw and will be contacted by phone. Competition entrants must be resident in the island of Ireland. One entry per person. Competition is also subject to all usual terms and conditions.

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23/05/2014 09:05:07

Tír na nÓg Montessori School AMI, Copperfield House, 6 Clermont, Douglas Road, Cork is currently celebrating its 30th Anniversary. Tír na nÓg Montessori School was opened in September 1983 by Linda Winning Dip in Montessori Education AMI and Benincasa Diploma. Tír na nÓg is AATI Registered and IMEB Accredited. All teaching staff at this school have successfully completed a teacher training course in either the AMI or the St Nicholas Teacher Training Colleges.

We would like to extend best wishes to our present pupils and to all of our past pupils of Tír na nÓg Montessori School who attended over the last 30 years.

At Tír na nÓg we aim to ensure that the unique qualities of each child are recognised by giving them a happy and secure learning environment. Over the years at Tír na nÓg many of the children made friends for life.

Facilities available :

Our curriculum offers Practical life exercises, sensorial activities, music, mathematics, science, language, geography, nature activities, arts and crafts, school concert, patio and garden play areas.

• Open all year round from 8.00am to 6.00pm Monday to Friday. • Morning and afternoon Montessori classes. • Day Care facilities. • After school care for primary school children. • Arts and craft camp in July and August. • This school participates in the government grant schemes –ECCE AND CETS

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22/05/2014 14:50:04

For 125 Years The ISPCC has campaigned for the rights of Children across Ireland. We have worked tirelessly to support some of the most vulnerable Children nationwide in their time of need. Help us to make a lasting difference in 2014

Over 700,000 calls received by our Childline service in 2013

1500 Children & Families Individually Supported

670 Dedicated Part-Time Volunteers

The ISPCC has to raise between 80-90% of its income through fundraising. Irish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children, 29 Lower Baggot Street, Dublin 2 T: 01 676 7960 Website: Registered Charity Number: CHY 5102

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23/5/14 15:34:45

68 Dad’s Diary


LITTLE PONY What happens when you find out you’re no longer worshipped by daddy’s little girl? NICK WILKINSON is about to find out.


t’s not easy realising that you are no longer the apple of your daughter’s eye. Last Christmas, my three year old announced that she wanted a pony. She had already written Santa a letter detailing the specifics. This was, in fact, a helpful illustration – of a long-legged monster with huge beady eyes and streaks of flame shooting from its body. I had to ask about the flames. “That’s his tail, silly.” My son hoped that Santa would be confused and we’d end up with a creature that shot fire from its bottom. His eyes lit up. “I want one too.” The letter was dispatched with gentle warnings that Santa can’t always deliver what we ask for. When a toy pony arrived in its own pink trailer, my daughter was not too devastated. We told her that if she proved to us that she could mind an animal, then, someday, she might get a real equine pal of her own. She assumed this would be imminent. I made vague promises, safe in the knowledge that it would be a long time before I had to keep them. This is because she treats the family pets the same way that she treats the rest of us. Her affections swing between doting infatuation, extreme impatience, and casual violence. One minute, the dog will be choked with hugs and force-fed rice cakes. A few moments later, it will get a whack on the nose for trying to steal her dinner. I know exactly how he feels. Luckily, the dog is patient. It doesn’t resist when she tries to ride him around the kitchen. He just lies down with a sigh and gives in to the torture. Taking his lead, I was trying this tactic when my wife came home with great news: Daddy would need to play horsey no longer. Why? Because she had found our daughter a pony. “We can’t have a horse,” I said. “It’s a pony. And we had to get something to keep the donkey company.” At that point, I had to sit down. Up to now we owned

neither a horse, a donkey, a pony nor anything in between. It wasn’t even Christmas. My wife is an impulsive woman. We are about to move house and will soon have the use of a stable and small paddock. She had mentioned planting vegetables, maybe keeping a few chickens. In recent days, it had been mooted that we may eventually have room for the long-promised pony. But, in one afternoon, our future smallholding had blossomed into a stud farm. “I thought we were going to start with a couple of chickens,” I said, as I watched our new arrival gobble a large carrot from my delighted daughter’s hand. Her pony is, in fact, on loan. A friend’s daughter has grown too big to ride him. He is a cherished pet and must be returned intact. The donkey was found tied up in a bog somewhere and is in dire need of rescue. He arrives soon. Given the way our daughter treats me and the dog, whether the donkey has landed on his feet is debatable. Or so I thought. My daughter has proved to be a keen horsewoman. Bowie the pony reminds me of me before I had children. Bright eyes, a shock of thick blonde hair hanging over his forehead. While I look ragged, he thrives on frequent grooming, cuddles and feeding. Even the dog likes our new arrival. He doesn’t have to suffer being ridden anymore. He tags along on feeding trips to the paddock and snaffles any fallen carrots or apples that the pony drops from his over-stuffed mouth. There have been a few problems, though. My daughter feeds Bowie every piece of fruit and cereal in the house. Like the dog, I’m not called upon to play horsey anymore. In fact, I’m not called upon much at all. I went to the paddock to appraise my daughter’s new best friend. Fine, I thought, you are a handsome little brute. Bowie stared back at me, munching a mouthful of my expensive granola. Our eyes met. We both knew what the other was thinking: “Who’s the daddy now?”

“Like the dog, I’m not called upon to play horsey anymore. In fact, I’m not called upon much at all.”

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23/05/2014 09:06:08

N l


Primary Montessori School





nt essori Sch

Monkstown Montessori School AMI Established 1977 IMEB Registered • ECCE approved Hours: 8.45am to 12.30 pm Afterschool til 2pm Phone: 087 2641014 Email: Society of Friends Meeting House, Pakenham Road, Monkstown, Co. Dublin

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Est. 1978

• Montessori Method from 3 years to 12 • We offer the free pre-school year ECCE • Small class sizes ratio 16:1 • Full Primary Curriculum with holistic, child focused modules in Speech and drama, art, cookery, Spanish, Ruggerbugs and swimming. • Each child is recognized as an individual, they have the opportunity to learn in a healthy, happy and child centred environment. • Located in Barnhall, Cebridge, Co. Kildare. Contact Sinead: (01) 6242525

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Horizons Junior School is located beside Terenure College Rugby club. We have classes that run from Junior Infants to 2nd Class and our school acts as a direct feeder into Terenure College Junior School. As a result of our close connection with Terenure College, we have full use of their facilities which include, an expanse of fields, a modern swimming pool, gymnasium, tennis courts, and a concert hall. Our children feel very much part of that larger school community as a result of these links. However they also have the benefit of a nurturing environment with class sizes no bigger than 16 children. Curriculum books are integrated into the work cycle which helps to prepare the child for the transition into mainstream education. Activities such as drama, dance, p.e., tennis, gaa, rugby are all part of the weekly routine.

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70 education

spotlight on

Montessori Education

Developed by Dr Maria Montessori, Montessori education is based on an attitude of care and respect for young children, and is designed to develop the child as a whole, writes MINA WALSH, company secretary of the Irish Montessori Education Board Trust Ltd


ontessori education provides children with opportunities to develop independence, selfconfidence and self-discipline, all of which are skills for life. The classrooms are bright, spacious multiage learning communities. Children are free to move about and enjoy independently chosen activities. The environment is naturally visually pleasing and has a well maintained structure and order. It is a nurturing and enriching prepared learning environment based on the needs and the natural development of children. Children experience a blend of freedom and self-discipline in a place especially designed to meet their developmental needs. Practical occasions for developing social relationships through free interaction occur naturally. Respect is encouraged in all relationships in this environment. The inherent flexibility of the Montessori programme allows it to be adapted to the needs of children regardless of their level of ability, learning style or social maturity. The Montessori learning environment provides a range of manipulative materials that are organised and easily accessible and readily available to children for independent use for as long as they wish, stimulating the natural instincts and interests of children for selfdirected learning. A wide range of activities and manipulative materials are arranged in the following learning and exploration areas and are provided for the holistic development of the child. Practical Life activities provide opportunities for the development of personal care skills, social skills, exploration of water and fine grains, physical development both fine and gross motor movements, refinement of movement and development of creative imagination. Examples of activities: pouring, spooning, squeezing, folding, carrying, opening/closing, twisting, screwing/unscrewing, dressing frames, polishing and washing. Sensorial activities offer children opportunities for exploration and discovery of sorting,

matching, grading and stacking. Intrinsic qualities of the learning materials are possible to discover through exploration, clarifying, classifying through experience and naming including such attributes as size, colour, shape and dimension. Children engage in numeracy activities as part of their daily experience. Examples of activities: cylinder blocks, pink tower, broad stair, long rods, colour boxes, geometric shapes, progressive sorting activities, touch boards, fabric box, touch tablets, sound boxes. Cultural activities involve exploration of art, crafts, music, drama, science and nature, history and geography. Examples of activities: painting, pasting, gluing activities facilitating creative exploration and development, reconstructed environment using animal models i.e. farm, zoo, nature table, concept of time, stories of life, picture stories of other cultures, matching pictures, puzzle maps, nature puzzles, picture and lifecycles stories. Experiments sinks / floats, magnetic / non-magnetic. Language activities provide for an integrated language arts approach in which speaking, listening, reading and writing develop in unison. Examples of activities: library, stories, poems, nursery rhymes and songs. Insets for design develop basic skills for use of the writing instrument, sandpaper letters - develop phonemic awareness and early reading skills. Mathematic activities: children explore numbers and mathematics in a natural way. The

manipulation of concrete materials facilitates exploration of and understanding of mathematical concepts and facts. Examples of activities: sorting, grouping, matching, ordering, counting activities, number rods & symbols, sandpaper numerals, spindle box, counters & numeral cards, memory games. Under the guidance of a Montessori trained teacher, children in a Montessori classroom learn by making discoveries with the materials, cultivating concentration, motivation, selfdiscipline, sense of responsibility and a love of learning that remains with them for life.

Choosing a Montessori Ask these questions when visiting and deciding on a Montessori for your child: ✹ Are interactions with children respectful, responsive, warm and caring? ✹ Has the teacher a full award in a recognised Montessori qualification appropriate to the age group? ✹ Is the Montessori ethos evident in the environment and in the interactions with children and staff? ✹ Are there Montessori materials available and easily accessible to the children? ✹ Do the Montessori teachers engage in continuous professional development?

The qualification of the teacher is one of the key determinants of quality. St Nicholas Montessori Society of Ireland celebrates 45 years delivering Montessori teacher education courses accredited by QQI and has quality Montessori education at its core. It provides also Montessori school for children 3-12 years. Montessori Schools that have accredited Montessori programmes are listed on

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t Mount Anville Montessori Junior School pupils begin their Montessori education at 2½ to 12years where each child’s development is nurtured in our school. Nestled in Goatstown, South Dublin, we share a campus with Mount Anville Secondary School, providing our girls with the opportunity of a continuous holistic educational experience. A calm, safe environment prevails throughout our school, leading to the wholehearted engagement of pupils and staff, creating the ideal atmosphere for teaching, discovery, learning and mutual respect. Ours is a close knit and inclusive family where respect is consciously taught, and where children are instilled with a lifelong love and enjoyment of learning.  When our pupils join our school, they enter a Montessori 3-6 class, which encompasses three age levels in one room. Here the pupils will engage in activities that progress developmentally at the pace of the individual, under the guidance and direction of the teacher. The curriculum encompasses Language (English and

Learning and discovery at

Mount Anville Start your child off on an educational journey of a lifetime at Mount Anville Montessori Junior School Gaeilge), Mathematics, Geometry, Botany, Zoology, Geography, History, Religion, SPHE, PE, Music and Art. Each class is equipped with materials that invite and lead the child to explore and discover, through an integrated thematic approach. Ultimately, the child sees the world as a whole entity, not divided into separate subject areas. We have extensive grounds, including a wildflower garden, outdoor classroom, a playground to name but a few, which provide pupils with ample learning opportunities. On completing their Montessori Education in 2nd Class, our pupils continue their educational journey in our Junior Department ranging from 3rd to 6th class inclusive. Our school aims to provide the environment for development in every sphere: spiritual, physical, emotional, social, intellectual, artistic and moral.

The school has a Three Year Development Plan which can be viewed on our school website which will include details of an exciting sports, music and language programme.

Please contact us and we will be delighted to show you around our school.  Keep an eye on our website to see up and coming events.

Mount Anville MONTESSORI JUNIOR SCHOOL 2½ – 12 years At Mount Anville Montessori Junior School pupils begin their education at 2½ years. Each child’s development is nurtured in both our Montessori and Junior Departments. We offer an extensive curriculum and a full range of activities including Music, P.E. and Sport. We also have an exciting extra-curricular programme. Early morning Supervision from 8am and extensive afterschool care available from 8am – 5pm.

For further information please contact: The Admissions Secretary, Mount Anville Montessori Junior School, Mount Anville Road, Dublin 14 Phone: 01 2885313 • Fax: 01 2832373 Email: • 231654_2L_MOUNT ANVILLE_SN_M&I.indd 1

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20/05/2014 16:18:37

23/05/2014 15:14:10

Protect your baby's skin with soft water

muiri k boutique

Styling Children


water systems ltd


10 yeAr pArtS & LAbour WArrAntee



Ballysally Business Park, Railway Rd, Charleville, Co. Cork tel: 063 89290 • fax: 063 89162 • Mobile: 087 2704172 Dublin: 1850 451850 • Galway: 087 6688769 / 091 771110 •

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Muiri K Boutique has a passion for junior fashion, buying fabulous collections that make Mums want to squeal with delight! Collections that are perfect for special occasions and yet practical & comfortable for everyday wear. For Girls we veer towards Pretty with a Sporty twist with all the matching pieces to accessorize. For Boys, think Smart Casual adding a dash of color for fun and youthfulness. We also stock fabulous & functional baby changing bags & other must-have accessories including baby hampers.

Get onboard our junior fashion page on Facebook and get to know us as we shop for you. Facebook: Website:

26/05/2014 12:20:19 231287_4C_MUIRI_JR_M&I.indd 1

22/05/2014 11:50:13 Awarded I.M.E.B. Accreditation ECCE Reg. and Approved A.M.I. Affiliated

Contact Siobhán 086 392 0774

Aughrim Montessori School

Awarded I.M.E.B. Accreditation ECCE Reg. and Approved A.M.I. Affiliated

Children’s House 2½ to 6 years

Contact Siobhán 086 392 0774

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Aughrim Montessori School (AMS) is situated in the picturesque town of Aughrim, Co. Wicklow. Aughrim Montessori School is purpose built within the Community Complex and was established in 2010. AMS caters for children aged 2 1/2 to 6yrs. Apart from the spacious grounds of Aughrim community fields; Aughrim Montessori School has its own very large, private, beautiful children’s garden. Planting, harvesting, playing and picnicking are just some of the activities the children engage in the outdoor space.

A friendly environment for children created by an experienced teacher What strikes the visitor walking through the door of the school is the warmth and calm of the classroom. Children are busily going about their activities with enthusiasm and enjoyment. This atmosphere is created by the respect and encouragement the children receive as well as the space and freedom in which to learn things for themselves. Miss Siobhán, as she is called, is a warm and energetic person, who has over 25 years experience teaching children from 2½yrs through to twelve years. Lecturing and training adults in Montessori education are also part of her work. AMS is registered with the ECCE scheme, and proud to be approved and accredited by I.M.E.B.

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EXPERTS We have a wide range of experts on hand to answer your questions on everything from pregnancy and birth to sleeping, feeding, fitness and general wellbeing. If you have a question that needs answered, get in touch!


Dr Julius Parker


Dr Declan Keane


Dr Parker is a general practitioner with HSF Health Plan’s free 24-hour GP advice line and answers healthrelated questions for young families. For more information on HSF Health Plan, visit or Lo Call 1890 473 473.

Dr Keane is a senior clinical embryologist with 20 years’ experience. He is director of ReproMed fertility clinics in Kilkenny and Dublin, with a third clinic opening in Limerick this year. For more information, call Declan on (01) 685 6755 or visit

Jenny is a chartered physiotherapist and partner at Total Physio, an independent private practice based at the Slievemore Clinic in south Dublin. She is also a mum of two. For more information call Jenny on (01) 200 0555 or visit

Sleep Consultant


Lucy Wolfe,

CGSC, MAPSC Lucy is a paediatric sleep consultant and mum of four. She runs a private sleep consulting practice where she provides knowledge, expertise and valuable support to families across the country. Visit

Jenny Branigan


Dr Sam Coulter-Smith

Ruth Charles

Dr Coulter-Smith is a consultant in obstetrics and gynaecology, master of the Rotunda Hospital and a clinical professor of obstetrics and gynaecology at the Royal College of Surgeons.

Ruth is a dietitian with the Early Feeding Clinic, which offers advice on becoming pregnant, nutrition during pregnancy and feeding your baby. For more information, visit

Ask the experts... If you have a question regarding any aspect of your pregnancy, new baby or toddler, please get in touch. Email us at or write to us at maternity & infant, Ashville Media Group, Old Stone Building, Blackhall Green, Dublin 7.

MI June-Jul 2014_Ask the experts.indd 73

23/05/2014 12:22:34





Persistent Cough

My ten-year-old boy still wets the bed. While we are managing this at home, he cannot go on any sleepovers with friends. He is beginning to feel left out. What else can we do?

My ten-year-old child has a persistent cough that has been treated with two courses of antibiotics this winter, to no avail. She does not suffer from asthma, panic attacks or any breathing difficulties.

Although approximately one in 14 ten-year-old boys still regularly wet the bed, by this age it is becoming a much more distressing symptom which can affect your son’s social life and self-confidence. I’m assuming you’ve seen your son’s GP but, if not, I’d recommend a review as your GP should be able to exclude any underlying medical cause. This is more likely if your son has daytime symptoms as well, such as needing to go to the toilet frequently or urgently. Constipation is a well-recognised and sometimes overlooked cause of bedwetting. It can also run in families, especially on the father’s side. Restricting evening fluid intake should at least reduce night-time urine volume. Going to the toilet regularly during the day and before bed will also help, as will planned night-time waking and toileting. I think your next step should be an enuresis alarm, which you can buy but may also be available for loan from a local clinic (you can check with your GP). I’d recommend at least a three-month trial of this. If this hasn’t helped, your GP may prescribe desmopressin, especially if your son is otherwise fit and well. This is available in two strengths and the lower dose should be tried first. Desmopressin is usually well tolerated and, again, I’d suggest at least a three-month trial, with a slow withdrawal if your son’s symptoms are improving.

During the winter months, coughs and colds are common, and viral infections may occur back to back, giving the impression of a persistent cough. A lingering cough is more common if children are exposed to smoke. It’s also usual for a cough to be more troublesome at night, when mucous accumulates in the airways. Many GPs would suggest a short course of asthma treatments in children with a persistent cough, as a sustained improvement suggests this is the underlying explanation and a trial is risk-free. Your GP may also suggest a chest X-ray. If this is normal, and your daughter’s growth (height and weight) is normal, several rarer possibilities are ruled out. If at this point your daughter’s symptoms persist, I would recommend seeing a paediatrician. There are several further investigations that may be helpful. Some infections can produce a persistent cough and serological blood tests can check for these – for example, pertussis and mycoplasma. Gastric reflux from the stomach can also trigger a cough in children.


Dry skin My nine-year-old child suffers from dry skin on her arms and legs. Her knuckles can also get very dry. Can you recommend a good moisturiser? Dry skin is a common complaint in both adults and children. The usual underlying cause is eczema, even if there are no typical red patches. Did your daughter have eczema as a baby? Or is there a close family history of atopy, such as eczema or asthma? The distribution of your daughter’s symptoms make me suspect keratosis pilaris. This is a harmless condition and is more common in girls. It produces small bumps on the skin surface around the hair follicles which are sometimes slightly reddened, giving a ‘goose-skin’ appearance. These affected areas are typically mildly itchy. The back and sides of the upper arms and front of the thighs are commonly affected. In most cases, it improves during the teenage years and early adulthood. Using quite thick, non-perfumed moisturiser is helpful but the key step is to apply your moisturiser liberally when the skin has been gently dried after a bath or shower. Avoid long, hot showers or baths, and using too much soap or bubble bath. Aqueous cream is often recommended as a cleanser and moisturiser, but your doctor or pharmacist may recommend trying creams containing urea or salicylic acid.

MI June-Jul 2014_Ask the experts.indd 74



How to ... TREAT A FEVER IN CHILDREN ✹ Take off some layers





Teaching your children

Also known as

of clothing (if room

to clean their hands

pertussis, whooping

temperature is

regularly can help

cough causes long


keep them healthy and

bouts of coughing

stop spreading germs.

and choking, making

but avoid making the

From the time they

it hard to breathe.

room too cold

are babies, wash your

It is most serious in

hands regularly in front

infants under the

intake, such as water

of them. When you are

age of 12 months.

or fruit juice

toilet-training, add in

The six-in-one

✹ A lukewarm bath or

hand-washing as part of

vaccine should

shower can help

the routine. Teach them

protect against

how to use soap and

this potentially

or ibuprofen products

clean every part of their

dangerous disease,

can be alternated if

hands. Make things easy

which is why it’s

the fever is bad, but

for them by providing a

so vital to keep up

be sure to follow the

stool, soap and a towel.

to date with your

correct dosage for

Finally, teach them when

child’s vaccination

your child’s age.

to clean their hands.


✹ Try opening a window,

✹ Encourage fluid

✹ Children’s paracetamol

23/05/2014 12:35:31

75 ask the obstetrician



Weight and pregnancy

Epidurals in birth

I am very overweight – my BMI is 32 – and I’m three months pregnant. I’m panicking over putting on even more weight. How much should I be gaining? Or can I lose weight while pregnant?

I am terrified of pain during birth and have heard so many stories about people not getting an epidural in time. What exactly is an epidural and when should I ask for one?

You are correct: your BMI is high and this does present some issues. You are more likely to develop gestational diabetes during the pregnancy, your risk of having a bigger baby is increased, and your chances of requiring both instrumental delivery and Caesarean section are increased too. You should have been referred to a dietitian at the hospital you are attending; if not, try to get an appointment as soon as you can. You need to get advice on your diet and you should try to get regular aerobic exercise. There is no specific set weight gain in pregnancy, as all women are different. You will gain weight as the baby, the womb and your fluid volume increases but this can be offset by good diet and regular exercise. I would advise early intervention with a dietitian and to try and tailor your lifestyle to become more healthy. Use this as an opportunity to becoming and staying more healthy.

There is no need to be terrified of the pain of giving birth. The important thing is to arm yourself with good information, go along to the antenatal education classes at your hospital and find out what options are available; you can then start to think about your choices. I usually tell people not to have too many preconceived ideas. If you are well prepared, you will cope just fine and you will have the support of experienced midwives to guide you through the whole process. There is a wide range of pain relief options open to you and you don’t have to stick to just one. An epidural is an injection of pain-relieving drugs into the epidural space outside the spinal cord. It’s very safe and very effective, but it does limit your movement and makes it a bit more likely you may need an instrumental delivery because you do lose the urge to push at the time of delivery. You can have an epidural at any time, but it’s more difficult for the anaesthetist to insert it if you are close to delivery. Again, if you talk to your midwife when you are in labour, she can advise you.


Placenta praevia I’m four months pregnant and I’ve been told I have placenta praevia. What is this and should I be worried? You are only 16 weeks pregnant and many placentas will be situated low down in the womb at this stage so it’s still normal. Most placentas will migrate out of the lower part of the uterus as pregnancy progresses. This process starts to happen at about 27 weeks or so. A scan will be performed at 32 to 34 weeks to recheck the placental position, and the majority of placentas will no longer be low at this stage. If you are unlucky and the placenta is still covering the cervix, you may require delivery by Caesarean section. A low-lying placenta can also be associated with bleeding both before and after delivery and your doctor will speak to you more about this if the placenta remains low.    

MI June-Jul 2014_Ask the experts.indd 75

Quick Guide


Ask ... Five questions to ask at your first hospital appointment ✹ When is my due date? ✹ Can I keep taking my medications/ supplements? ✹ What dietary or exercise advice should I follow? ✹ What is my schedule of hospital, doctor and scan visits? ✹ Is there a number I can call if I’m worried or if there is an emergency?


Read .... Waiting room reading


What is… False labour False labour is a term often

The Day-By-Day

used by women to describe

Pregnancy Book,

Braxton Hicks contractions.

edited by Dr Maggie

What it really means is that

Blott, €21.99 (DK

the womb starts to contract at

Publishing), the

irregular intervals. This can be

perfect book for mums

a bit uncomfortable because,

to be who want to

as the muscle of the uterus

follow every minute of

tightens, it pushes the baby’s

their growing baby’s

head lower into your pelvis.


These tightenings start in late pregnancy. The differences between these tightenings and the contractions of labour are that they are usually shorter and not as painful, they are more irregular, and they are most noticeable in the lower part of your abdomen.

23/05/2014 12:36:10

76 ask the Fertility Expert



Age and fertility

Donor sperm

I am a 38-year-old woman and have found a partner late in life. We would like to start trying for a family and, because of my age, we don’t want to leave it too late before seeking assistance. Any advice?

We are a lesbian couple in a civil partnership. We want to access donor sperm to start our own family. Can we access this service in Ireland?

Try to conceive naturally by having regular intercourse each month for at least six months. Ensure you stack the odds in your favour by keeping a healthy lifestyle. Cut out smoking and reduce alcohol intake to one or two glasses of wine (or equivalent) per week – or, even better, abstain totally from alcohol. Your partner should also adhere to the same lifestyle advice and watch his BMI. Physical exercise and nutrition is equally important for male general health and fertility. Due to your age, I would suggest some simple blood tests if you have not been successful conceiving after six months. Blood tests should be carried out around day two to four of your menstrual cycle. An ultrasound scan of the ovaries can also lend a lot of valuable information about your fertility profile. Your partner should have a sperm assessment (seminal fluid analysis) at a recognised specialised lab. Often, the information gives us something to treat simply or to circumnavigate with some more complicated medical or interventional therapies like intra-uterine insemination (IUI) or in-vitro fertilisation (IVF). But remember that the majority of couples get pregnant themselves and with little or no intervention. Try to relax and achieve pregnancy yourselves.


Sperm test results I recently had a sperm test carried out because my partner and I have been trying to get pregnant for the last nine months with no success. The results are confusing; can you explain what the average should be for a man?

Yes, absolutely. It amazes me that still some couples – both hetero and gay – will leave Ireland to access donor sperm. It must be either for privacy or embarrassment reasons, or because there is a lack of public awareness that we have donor sperm banks in Ireland. All fertility clinics that provide artificial insemination by donor sperm are duty bound to confidentiality and privacy. Donor sperm clinics will assign a donor more often than not. At our ReproMed clinics we do give an option to the couple to review all available donor profiles and help them to make the decision of donor selection for the insemination treatment. It is a very natural process of sperm and egg fertilising in your body as normal. We do employ clinical protocols, which sometimes entail simple fertility enhancing medications and, more often than not, we track the egg follicle growing to maturity and time ovulation and insemination to best maximise your pregnancy success rates. Artificial insemination success rates are no less than your natural rate of conception.

Quick Guide


How to ... find a fertility clinic ✹ Ask your GP for recommendations

This is not a straightforward question to answer. There are several factors that are measured in a standard semen analysis: volume, count, motility, morphology and the presence of anti-sperm antibodies. A good count, motility and morphology of sperm cells instinctively makes sense; after all, it would be difficult to achieve a spontaneous pregnancy if there are no sperm cells present, if they are not swimming or if they are grossly abnormally shaped. However, the significance of anti-sperm antibodies is not completely understood. Anti-sperm antibodies are generated when the immune system comes in contact with sperm cells in the body. These antibodies bind to the sperm cells and can prevent them from reaching or fertilising the egg; however, many men with anti-sperm antibodies achieve spontaneous pregnancies. Most semen analysis results vary a lot between individuals and can even vary from day to day in one individual. Although these tests can be useful, a man’s fertility or infertility does not solely depend on the semen analysis results and the couple’s clinical history should be taken into account. Therefore, it would be best to discuss the semen analysis results with a fertility expert if you’re worried.

MI June-Jul 2014_Ask the experts.indd 76

✹ Do research on the internet, looking for reviews from people who have used the clinic ✹ Get a personal recommendation ✹ Call the clinic and ask any questions you may have (if a clinic doesn’t answer your questions satisfactorily, then maybe it’s not the right clinic for you) ✹ Look for a clinic that suits you in terms of location, success rate for your particular treatment, price, and general ethics


Tip .... IUI vs IVF: what’s the difference? ✹ IUI is much less


Tip… The importance of zinc One of the most

invasive. The sperm

important minerals

sample is ‘washed’,

for fertility in both

with the more mobile

sexes is zinc, but

sperm inserted into

many of our foods

the woman’s cervix.

are stripped of this

Often the woman

essential nutrient

is given a low dose

thanks to processing

of fertility drugs to

and refining. Foods

enhance ovulation

particularly high in

as well.

zinc include mangoes,

✹ IVF is when the egg

pumpkin seeds and

is extracted from the

fish, especially oysters.

woman and fertilised

Look for organic, fresh

with sperm from the

food if possible.

man. The embryo is then inserted into the woman.

and procedure.

23/05/2014 12:37:34




Healthy eating

Heartburn & late pregnancy

I am just six weeks’ pregnant with my second baby but I am really worried about gaining weight. How can I eat healthily for the baby without gaining too much weight.

I am 6 months’ pregnant and really struggling with heartburn. I am very uncomfortable after every meal and sleeping is getting harder all the time. Is there anything I can do?

The best way to stay at a healthy weight is to base what you eat around high-fibre foods. These take longer to digest, so you don’t get hungry again too soon. They are also mostly low glycaemic index foods. Low GI foods have been shown to help limit the amount of weight you gain during pregnancy, keeping it at healthier levels. Fruit and vegetables are good sources of fibre. Choose wholegrain bread, pasta and rice and go for a high-fibre breakfast cereal every morning. Beans and lentils are also a great source of fibre – try bean salads, hummus, soups with beans and lentils and add soup mix (barley & lentils) to casseroles and stews. Apart from helping you to manage your weight, this diet will also help you ward off the dreaded pregnancy constipation! If you normally don’t eat a lot of fibre, do add it in gradually over about two weeks and remember to increase the amount of water you drink. You need to have 1.5-2 litres of water everyday to help fibre move through your digestion. Good luck!

Heartburn affects almost everyone during pregnancy, some more than others. It can kick in around five to six months and lasts right up until delivery. As your baby gets bigger, the room in your stomach gets smaller so it is under a lot of pressure. This means that as your stomach moves to crush your food, some of that food escapes into your oesophagus and you feel the burning sensation. The other problem is that around month five, your body starts to produce hormones to relax your muscles, getting you ready to give birth. This relaxation is a major cause of constipation during pregnancy but it also relaxes the seal at the top of your stomach and makes it easier for food and acid to come back up after eating. What can you do? In the early days, eating smaller amounts more often can help. Try not to drink with meals (it just fills you up). Have your drinks in between meals instead. Make sure you are sitting up straight to eat and try to stay sitting up for at least one hour after eating. If you can stand and move around, this is even better, so a walk after lunch is a great idea. At night time, try putting a brick or large book (about 4-6 inches) under your mattress. This slight incline will help to stop food flowing back up your throat as you sleep. Lying on your left side can also help to ‘seal’ the top of your stomach and can make a great difference to a good night’s sleep.


Quick meals I am six months pregnant and I am finding it really hard to eat the right foods for my baby. I already have two children, four and two, and I’m working so I’m very busy. What can I eat that’s quick and healthy?



How to ... SNACK HEALTHY Got the munchies? Try one of these easy snacks.

Healthy eating is important during pregnancy but life doesn’t stop just because you are pregnant! Do try to get regular meals, even if it is a quick snack. Next time you get to the supermarket stock up on nuts, dried fruit and cereal bars. These are handy to carry with you to work and are easy to eat even when you are running around after two children! Drinking yoghurts are great to bring as part of a packed breakfast that you can eat on the way to work. Crackers topped with hummus or cheese make a quick lunch or between meal snack and are also great for protein. If you are struggling to get enough vegetables, remember that frozen vegetables are just as good as fresh and take a lot less time to prepare. Tinned fruit in its own juice is also quick to eat and tastes great topped with yoghurt. Smoothies are a great way to add fruit, you can make your own or buy cartons of ready-made smoothies for breakfast or snacks. Some really quick-to-make healthy options for dinner include beans on toast, poached eggs on toast with sliced tomato or a carton of fresh soup with bread and cheese. Finally, ask for help. If there is anyone who could cook a meal or even get to the supermarket for you, then let them. You don’t have to be superwoman.

MI June-Jul 2014_Ask the experts.indd 77


Tip .... NUTS: YAY OR NAY IN PREGNANCY? Several studies have actually

✹ Hummus on oatcakes

found that eating nuts

✹ Handful of berries,

during pregnancy may help

especially strawberries

to reduce the chances of your

and blueberries

baby having a nut allergy.

✹ Fruit yoghurt with

The best benefit seems to

sunflower seeds on

come from eating nuts up to


five times a week. However,

✹ Raw vegetable sticks

this only applies if you do not

with guacamole

have a nut allergy yourself.

✹ Slice of granary toast

One other thing that came

and grilled tomato

out of the studies: women who ate nuts everyday had more babies with nut allergies. So, as long as you are not allergic to nuts


Get … SOME HELP The EARLY FEEDING CLINIC offers advice on becoming pregnant, nutrition during pregnancy and feeding your baby. The clinic’s specialist paediatric dietitians work with babies and children with issues from failure to thrive through to allergies and overweight. For more information see www.

yourself, the advice seems to be include nuts but not everyday.

23/05/2014 12:36:58




Abdominal separation I am a mother of eight-week-old twins and I noticed a big gap in my tummy muscles the other day. Is this normal?

Your abdominal muscles have done plenty of stretching over the past nine months to accommodate your bump, and it will take time for them to settle back down nice and flat again so, firstly, don’t worry; this is totally normal. Ask your chartered physiotherapist for some fitted Tubigrip for your abdominal area and wear it daily for approximately six weeks. The compression from the Tubigrip helps to reduce abdominal swelling, move stagnant lymph out, and stabilise the skin to shrink again. The uterus can also benefit from support as it shrinks back into place. For mums who have a Caesarean section, the compression is also great for supporting the healing wound. Massaging your abdominal muscles is very beneficial for improving your circulation, which has the effect of flushing out the area and washing away any old toxins. If you had a C-section, you will not be able to massage around the wound until the scar has fully healed. Once the scar is well healed (approximately nine to 12 weeks after the birth), it is beneficial to gently massage over the scar to make the tighter tissue more supple. Visit your chartered physiotherapist for some gentle abdominal strengthening exercises that will help tighten the muscles again, and avoid sit-ups as they put too much pressure on your tummy in the early stages.

Yes, this is quite normal and referred to as DRAM, which stands for diastasis of the rectus abdominis muscle. DRAM occurs when the connective tissue joining your rectus muscles (the ‘six-pack’ muscles) widens and splits. This separation can affect the stability of your trunk and may contribute to pelvic floor dysfunction, back pain and pelvic pain during pregnancy and in the postnatal period. If you have DRAM, avoid crunches and situps as these will make the gap worse. You also need need to get in and out of bed as you did while pregnant: keeping your back straight and avoiding excessive pressure on the abdominals. You will need to see your chartered physiotherapist to get started on a gentle abdominal programme and work on it for at least the next four months, depending on the size of the gap.

has Clean & Lean philosophy James Duigan’s diet. to improve their encouraged thousands through every guidance and advice Here he offers and early motherhood, stage of your pregnancy ensure to boost your fertility, whether you want shape before the best possible your body is in including: back afterwards, birth, or get it plus tips on dos and don’ts, ✱ Healthy eating and cravings dealing with nausea and delicious recipes ✱ Quick, simple yoga routines, exercises, including ✱ Gentle, safe as get rid for birth as well to help you prepare

of your ‘mum tum’ getting enough post-baby, from ✱ Advice on life what to eat lost energy and sleep, to recovering when breastfeeding

Thumb pain When my baby was four weeks old, I started feeling pain in my wrist and thumb whenever I was lifting her. It was always worse by the end of the day. It has been getting really sore now over the past few weeks. Help! This common problem is a tendon irritation usually felt in the region of the thumb, wrist and up into the forearm. It is known as de Quervain’s syndrome, or ‘mommy thumb’, and is caused by the everyday act of repeatedly picking up your baby. Try these tips for postnatal thumb pain: ✹ Ice four to five times daily – crushed ice or a bag of frozen peas work best, simply wrap in a cloth and apply for ten minutes (especially after baby’s feed) ✹ Scoop baby instead of lifting ✹ Use pillows when feeding so you are not holding baby up during the whole feed ✹ Wear a splint daily, especially when you are lifting baby ✹ Ask your partner to take over the lifting of baby as much as possible and take help from friends and family when you can ✹ Avoid thumbs cocked up into an ‘L’ shape (this happens commonly when holding baby in one hand, facing away from you) ✹ Avoid lifting with your fingers under baby’s arms and thumb cocked up in front – keep your thumb against the side of your hand as you lift ✹ Avoid using your smartphone – scrolling and typing will further aggravate this injury

MI June-Jul 2014_Ask the experts.indd 78


taken ‘Clean & Lean has the world by storm, inspiring us to think g carefully about improvin our health.’ Expert Beauty


How to ... PREVENT VARICOSE VEINS Prevent the dreaded varicose veins during pregnancy with these top tips: ✹ Exercise regularly ✹ Elevate your knees and feet above the heart as much as possible ✹ Don’t cross your legs or feet when sitting ✹ Don’t sit and stand for long without taking regular breaks ✹ Use special support tights to help prevent swelling and to stop varicose veins from developing or worsening.

James duigan



and Teresa from Megan Gale With contributions as by Christy Turlington, Palmer, an afterword consultant, from a fertility well as expert advice to this is the guide an obstetrician, a midwife and in optimum health. your pregnancy ensure you enjoy

AnCy Guide Clean & Lean PreGn

Tummy after birth I had my first baby last week and am shocked that my tummy is so wobbly after it. What can I do to help my tummy muscles recover?

From the of the author ling bestsel Lean Clean &es seri


‘i followed James’ approach and felt happier, stronger t.’ and more confiden Lara Stone

James Duigan

& Lean

Clean pregnancy guide

eat to exercise and The healthy way after pregnancy before, during and




Want some exercise help,

A pelvic tilt is a

celebrity-style? James

useful abdominal

Duigan’s new book, Clean

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& Lean Pregnancy Guide:

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and eat before, during

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and after pregnancy,

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aims to restore women to

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optimum health in order to

flatten your back to

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23/05/2014 12:37:58

ask the

79 ask the sleep Consultant



Night company Why does my 15-month-old go down for naps no problem but at night he needs someone with him? Learning to fall asleep, at bedtime and nap-time, is a skill that must be acquired. It sounds like your child has not developed this skill yet at bedtime and requires parental presence. This is potentially exacerbated by a nap imbalance. At 15 months, I would still expect your child to take two naps and I would also ensure that you maintain no more than four hours of wakefulness between the end of the second nap and aiming to be asleep in bed at night. If you exceed the four hours, your child may become overtired in advance of bedtime, which will create a bedtime battle. Once you restore two daytime sleeps or close the waking period in the afternoon to four hours, you will begin a sleep-learning process that helps your child go to sleep easily at bedtime.


Sleeping later in morning How do I help my ten-month-old sleep later in the morning? He goes down at 7pm and wakes about 5am every morning, takes his bottle and is ready for play! Waking around 5am is considered early rising; waking after 6am is typical for young children. There are a few significant causation factors for early rising. The first is a bedtime that is too late – clearly, that doesn’t seem to be your child’s problem. For other parents with the same issue, I would encourage them to ensure that bedtime is, ideally, between 6pm and 8pm for a child under five. In your case, you need to make sure that your child is not too sleepy or even asleep before getting into the cot. The ideal situation is that a child gets into his cot, the parent leaves the room and you hear him chatting for five to ten minutes before he nods off. This way, you can know that he is not too sleepy. An overly sleepy child may not be able to efficiently cycle through his natural sleep phases, with 5am being the most challenging sleep cycle. Ensuring that your child is independent at bedtime is significant. A well daytime-rested child is less likely to wake prematurely than one who has a poor napping schedule or is under-slept during the day. At ten months, I would encourage two naps of good quality – ideally, in the cot – and a wakeful period not exceeding four hours before bedtime. Finally, I would phase out the use of a bottle before morning-time.

MI June-Jul 2014_Ask the experts.indd 79

Sharing a room One thing I find isn’t really covered in sleep training is room-sharing. Due to personal circumstances, we currently have our eight-month-old in our bedroom in his cot. How can we make the eventual transition into his own room? Room-sharing is a perfectly acceptable practice. If you are considering moving your six to eight-month-old into their own room, this can be a very easy transition, as they currently have no object permanence. I would advise that parents spend lots of non-sleep time in the room with the child – eg dress and change him in there, play with him in there and generally acclimatise him to the room for a few days beforehand. If you are moving the cot from your bedroom to his, I generally recommend that you don’t change the sheets on changeover day and allow your child to sleep in the bedwear that bears the familiar scent of his sleep environment. Finally, if he is a little out of sorts at sleep-time, then I recommend providing him with extra reassurance and then reducing your presence as necessary. With an older child, it is a different transition altogether. To make the transition easier in this instance, I would once again advise the room activities, but I would also suggest that a parent shares the child’s bedroom for a few days in order to bridge the gap between room-sharing, moving rooms and sleeping solo. As with any change, your child’s sleep may temporarily fall apart during this transition but, with patience and reassurance from you, this will pass.

Quick Guide


How to ... Get a good bedtime routine


Read .... all about it!


The Secret Life of Sleep

What is… a baby sleeping bag?

by Kat Duff, €18.60, is a

It’s never too early to

Sleeping bags are

fascinating look at the

start a good bedtime

fantastic ways to make

science of sleep.

sure your baby doesn’t

routine. Try this: ✹ Bath or wash ✹ Short massage with lotion or baby oil ✹ Change nappy and get into pyjamas ✹ Brush teeth or gums ✹ Read a story ✹ Sing a lullaby ✹ A hug and kiss!

kick off her blankets during the night. They look like adult sleeping bags with a vest top so your baby can move her arms around and not overheat. They’re available in different togs for different seasons, and can be found for every age from the first few months to 36 months. Buy it: Grobag Grobots 2.5 tog sleeping bag, €39, Mothercare

23/05/2014 12:38:16

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81 Baby photography



Picture by Ann-Marie Collins Tel 0863033331


Many parents want to book a professional photo shoot to capture the progress of their growing family – but what can you do to make sure you get the pictures you want?

very new parent will know that getting good pictures of a new baby requires a lot of patience and plenty of clicking to get the right image. To say it’s frustrating would be an understatement! If funds allow, some families like to book a professional photo shoot, to make sure they get some images they’d be proud to put on the wall. But even that isn’t without its hazards – when is the right time to book a session? What sort of photos are you looking for? How do you prepare your baby for the session? Read on for our top tips on getting a successful set of photos from your professional shoot. Most photographers have a specialty, whether it’s family, portrait, newborn or wedding photography – some may work in all these, and more, areas. If you have something in mind, look for a personal recommendation, or failing that, look at sample photography from that photographer’s website. If you are looking for a newborn photography shoot, bear in mind that these need to be done during the first couple of weeks, usually the first two weeks. Go for a photographer who is experienced in newborn photography

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and talk to them about when is the best time to book your session. Some studios offer a very stylised type of photography, with exaggerated colours or retouching. Be sure you know that your chosen photographer produces the type of results you’re looking for. If you’re in doubt, discuss in detail what you want from your pictures with your photographer in advance of your shoot date. While the subject is your new baby, prepare yourself to be included in the pictures as well. Very often it’s mum who is taking the pictures and is therefore left out of the images, but a beautiful picture of you with your baby will be cherished in years to come. If you have older children, prepare them to be photographed at the start of the shoot while they are fresh and the novelty of the photographer is still there. If you are having the shoot at home, make sure you have a room that you’d like the shoot to take place in. If you are having a newborn shoot, have the room well heated as many photographers like to shoot the baby when he/she is naked or wrapped loosely in a blanket. To make photographs even more special and personal, consider having little family memen-

toes in the pictures, for example, a baby blanket or a hat knitted by a family member, or a robe passed down through generations. Make sure your baby’s environment is kept as peaceful as possible for the shoot. Many small babies are best photographed when they’re asleep, so keep siblings and other family members away when they are not actually being photographed. Some photographers like to get the family and posed shots over with first, and then move into more detailed shots and the baby shots when the baby has settled down to sleep. With just a little groundwork and preparation, your shoot will produce pictures that you will cherish for a lifetime!

Address book ✹ Maria of Kilkenny, 0567721012, ✹ Claire Wilson Photography, 0879111207, ✹ Visuelle Photography, 0877694683, ✹ Renata Photography, 0862636036, ✹ AMC Photography, 0863033331, ✹ Roberta Cotter, 0879326491,

23/05/2014 09:08:03

Roberta Cotter Photography Birth and Newborn Photographer

€5 entry for children 12 months and older. free for children under 12 months. free tea or coffee parent/guardian. We cater for all birthday parties with prices starting from as little as €10 per child. Summer Camps at Jungle Den Camps run every week in July and August 10am - 2pm €65 / week (single days also possible) Activities include: Arts & Crafts • Baking • Games • Singing • Dancing Drama • Treasure Hunts • Disco Story Telling • Pot Planting & much more, plus lots of fun in the jungle. We also run mother and toddler groups Mon-Fri term time only

Jungle Den Unit 4 Monread Commercial Park Monread Road, Naas, Co. Kildare T: 045 834100 F: 045 874040 E:

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22/5/14 19:18:49





In Africa, the hand that rocks the cradle also tills the field. In addition to raising children, preparing food, carrying water and collecting firewood, African women do up to 80% of the farm work. But they get as little as 5% of the support in training, seeds, land and credit. You can change this. Add your name to the petition to demand increased support for African women farmers. Find out more at

Text ‘PETITION’ followed by your name to 57856

Petition organised by

Texts will be charged at your standard network rate

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23/5/14 15:35:44

83 Life after baby

Spender big

It seems that having your first baby can result in a rapidly depleting bank account, with nearly all Irish mothers spending up to €5,000 in the first year of their brand-new baby’s life. So if you’ve been forking out more than you expected since having your first baby, you’re clearly not alone. A pregnancy survey carried out by SMA recently, revealed that 90 per cent of mothers in Ireland spend their well-earned dosh on all the essentials including buggies, car seats, clothes and babycare products, as well as decorating the baby’s nursery. Don’t fret, however, as the survey reassures that despite the big spending during the first 365 days, 70 per cent of new parents go on to save money on ‘hand me downs’ that they receive from family and friends. If you managed to save a bit of cash, read on for some great treats to help keep you stylish and comfortable, even with babies and children to look after!

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23/05/2014 09:09:33

84 Beauty


Beauty It’s summer, so time to shake up your beauty routine. Whether you’re hitting the beach or staying closer to home this summer, BRENDA MCCORMICK has your beauty routine sorted.


hile summer may conjure up images of sunkissed beach holidays and family adventures under foreign skies, not everyone heads off on hols and, of course, it’s summer at home too. With that in mind, we’ve come up with some of the beauty essentials to see you through the warmer months, wherever you are.

Le Vernis Nail Colour in Mirabella, €23, Chanel

Essie’s spring collection, €9.99 each

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LEFT: Rouge Edition Velvet in Pink Pong, €12.49, Bourjois RIGHT: La Laque Couture in Blue Celadon, €24, YSL BELOW: City Proof Twistable Intense Lip Color in Metropolitan Mauve, €3.49, NYC

Summer shake-up

Colour Elixir Giant Pen Sticks, €8.99 each, Max Factor

✹ It’s all about colour this

summer, from sugar-coated pastels to bright juicy shades. Textures vary from velvety mattes to sheer hints of colour so there’s something to suit all tastes. ✹ If you’re opting for a bright lip, keep the complexion sheer and natural and eye make-up low key to let your lips do the talking.

23/05/2014 09:11:14

85 Beauty The body beautiful

The extras

Pasty limbs will no doubt need a little prep time before being exposed to daylight but it’s not the massive chore you might think. Dull, dry skin responds quickly to some TLC. Use a body scrub a few times a week and get into the habit of using a body lotion or oil every day and you’ll soon have smooth limbs. Nivea’s Pampering Honey InShower Body Moisturiser (€3.99) is a good option for time-strapped mums. It’s applied in the shower and rinsed off, then you just towel dry and you’re good to go. Give pale arms and legs a touch of colour with bronzer or self-tan. It’s fine to use self-tan while you’re pregnant, although some experts suggest you steer clear of spray tans. An instant tan like Xen-Tan Ins-TanTaneous (€31) is a handy quick fix. For a lighter finish, mix a dollop of body lotion with self-tan (great if you’re not the best at putting it on).

Once you have the essentials taken care of, you can enjoy the fun stuff. Give golden limbs a subtle shimmer with highlighting creams and oils and experiment with bright make-up shades. Clarins’ Shimmer Oil (€37) smells beautiful and a sweep or two over legs and décolletage adds a subtle radiance. For the face, try a shimmery powder like MeMeMe Cosmetics Goddess Rocks (€15.50). Dust on the top of cheekbones and the bridge of the nose – wherever the sun naturally hits the face – for an evening glow. Go bright with colours on toes, lips and eyes and don’t be afraid to experiment with textures. Liners are a perfect way to get a shot of subtle colour, or go for a sheer wash of a pastel shade on eyelids or a tinted gloss on lips if you don’t want to go all-out. For evenings, turn holiday hair into a style asset by leaving the beachy texture (adding dry shampoo or a salt spray for more texture if you want) or slick a hair mask onto the hair, giving a wet-look style while also helping to restore moisture.

Essential SPF

It’s a summer must-have, but really it should be your daily skincare priority all year round. Most skin and beauty experts agree that using an SPF every day is the most important thing you can do for your skin to protect it now and for the future. The new generation of SPFs for the face are brilliant, with high-factor sun care and skincare benefits in light and easy-to-use formulations. Layer a standalone SPF under your moisturiser or foundation or, for the ultimate in quick and easy care, opt for a highfactor BB cream. Vichy’s new Capital Soleil SPF 50+ BB Cream (€16.50) teams UVA/UVB protection with radiance-boosting colour. It’s ideal for sensitive skin types and comes in two formulations: a dry-touch fluid for combination or oily skins and a velvety cream for drier skins.

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Going abroad

If you’re getting away to sunnier climes this summer, give your new-season beauty regime a little tweak. Sun cream is an absolute must, of course, but there are lots of great new products hitting beauty shelves that team sun protection with formulations that are lovely to use. Garnier Ambre Solaire’s Dry Mist (€22.99) is exactly as it sounds: a dry mist that contains mattifying powders so there’s no oily, sticky residue on the skin. It’s available in SPF 20, 30 and 50. For the face, try something that combines skincare benefits with good sun protection. Nuxe’s new Delicious Cream For Face SPF30 (€19) protects and hydrates, and also boosts the appearance of a natural tan. Don’t forget to take care of your hair in the sun too, especially if you colour it. Look for products with UV protection like Redken’s new Color Extend Sun Take Cover SPF 25 (€23), a leave-in mousse that protects hair from the sun‘s rays.

Dry Mist (€22.99), Garnier Ambre Solaire

Delicious Cream For Face SPF30 (€19), Nuxe

Clarins Shimmer Oil (€37) MeMeMe Cosmetics Goddess Rocks (€15.50)

Fabulous face Use the summer as an excuse to experiment with your make-up. Ditch the heavy full-coverage foundation, instead opting for a tinted moisturiser or a BB cream such as L’Oréal Nude Magique BB Cream (€14.99) and layering concealer only where you need it. One of the big beauty trends this year is skin that looks like skin – a glowing complexion with freckles showing though – so don’t be afraid to shine. Team fresh skin with a splash of colour on eyes, nails or lips. For a soft shimmer on lids, try Art Deco’s Jungle Fever Beauty Box (€10.95 for the empty palette, €11.50 each for Art Couture eyeshadows). The perfect personalised portable palette!

Color Extend Sun Take Cover SPF 25 (€23), Redken

23/05/2014 09:11:48


Hide tired mummy eyes


Aztec trilby, €7.34, Matalan

Susie cat eye sunglasses, €19.99, Accessorize


No time to do your hair? Here’s your answer - no one need know!

Frill print playsuit, €31, Very Printed denim top, €32, Dorothy Perkins


Swap summer dresses for playsuits - so there are no risks taken on windy days or running after kids!

Washed pocket tee, €16, Topshop

Beacon smock jacket, €185; Essington top, €43, Barbour

Hippy fabric boho, €5, Penneys



Free iD, €155, Nike

Summer for mums means spending a lot of time outdoors. Picnics, BBQs, walks on the beach, even football - but what to wear? Here is our guide to looking stylish, feeling comfortable and being ready for wherever the kids take you. Slip on sandals, €19.95, H&M

Handfree bagsbestare Soft denim knee short, from €33, Next


Easy on, easy off

Knitted jumper, €19.95, H&M

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27/05/2014 09:40:09

87 You – Work & Lifestyle

all about

Parental Leave So you’re back to work – but what’s the story with parental leave? Here’s what you need to know…


oing back to work after your parental leave can be tough, even if you love your work and the ‘adult’ time. There is simply so much more to think about with a baby – crèche/ minder fees, mammy time, extra household tasks. To help, parental leave is available, up to a total of 18 weeks per child. But what exactly are your rights?

However, apart from the loss of pay and pension contributions, taking parental leave does not affect any employment rights you have, such as accumulating annual leave.

Is my PRSI affected? No. Your employer must write to the Records Update Section of Department of Social Protection (DSP), detailing the weeks you have not worked, so that you can get credited PRSI contributions for parental leave.

How can I take my leave? A lot of this is up to your employer. The 18 weeks per child may be taken in one continuous period or in two separate blocks of a minimum of six weeks. There must be a gap of at least 10 weeks between the two periods of parental leave per child. However, if your employer agrees you can separate your leave into periods of days or even hours.

Does my partner get parental leave too? Yes. Both parents have an equal separate entitlement to parental leave. Unless you and your partner work for the same employer, you can only claim your own parental leave entitlement (18 weeks per child). If you

Caffeine on the go Save yourself a fortune by bringing a coffee with you on the go rather than buying expensive lattes and cappuccinos Coffee cup, €6, Dunnes Stores

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How do I apply?

both work for the same employer and your employer agrees you may transfer 14 weeks of your parental leave entitlement to each other.

Are you paid while on leave? No, that would be too good to be true! You are also not entitled to any social welfare payment.

Top tip

You must be working with your employer for at least a year before applying (unless otherwise agreed). If you are eligible, apply to your employer in writing at least six weeks in advance of the start date of the leave. An employer can postpone the leave by up to six months on the grounds that cover cannot be provided, but can only postpone once. Four weeks before the leave starts, you and your employer must sign a document with your employer confirming the details of the leave. For more information, see

Five questions “When you have a child, it’s important to keep that spark alive in your relationship, no matter how tired you are. Spend five minutes every evening talking about your day and any feelings or worries you might have.” Jennifer, mum to Sophie (5) and Cillian (2)

Thinking of staying at home? Ask yourself these five questions first. ✹ Can we afford to live on one salary? ✹ How easy would it be to re-enter the workforce if I needed/wanted? ✹ Can I change my working hours to suit instead? ✹ Would I enjoy being at home and with my kids 24/7? ✹ Is my partner supportive/do we have a viable plan in place in terms of housework/sharing money/free time etc?

23/05/2014 09:15:14

88 Blog we log


left foot I’m Kellie Kearney, a blogging mum (and a hairdresser on maternity leave) with two children. There’s Kayla, my living doll, aged four, and the newest addition, my little man Frankie, who’s just seven weeks old. He’s a smiling, pooping, sleeping machine. I share my stories, reviews and funnies on my own little slice of web.


o I have pretty much had the worst luck ever, which is strange considering everyone around me says that I’m the luckiest person they know. I went and broke my foot four weeks after giving birth to my baby boy, Frankie. So now I have a seven-week-old baby, a demanding four-year-old daughter Kayla, and no left foot! And no, it didn’t happen on my first night out since having Frankie (it’s going to be about 12 months before I can wear six-inch heels and hit the pub again). In actual fact, I was having a water fight. Yes, a stupid water fight. A mother of two can still have fun! Terrified to leave my newborn in case someone cuddled him better than I could, I left it three days before going to the hospital. I told the staff at the hospital that I was breastfeeding a brand-new baby at home with the hope of being seen to quicker. And it worked! Because after just a couple of x-rays, I’m now modelling the ugliest, bulkiest air cast for the next six weeks. These things really should come in a choice of colours. For the first few days, I could not carry Frankie safely down the stairs in the mornings. So I’ve been ringing and texting everybody I know to come over, and yes, carry him down the stairs for me. There’s clearly no recession surrounding me because it seems that every-

body works. Whilst also helping me down the stairs, I’d then sigh about how he was on his last bottle and – hey presto – they even helped make his bottles too! Kayla thinks it’s gas, she’s too clever. She’ll do something naughty then run upstairs because she knows I can’t chase her to put her on the naughty step. Or while I’m resting my foot she’ll sneak into the fridge or the press where I keep the sweets looking for treats. We’re starting to get on each other’s nerves though, as we’re stuck at home 24/7. I can’t just pop out to the shops or bring Kayla to preschool. Thankfully I can shower though, and don’t need a nine-inch ruler as my cast is removable. I haven’t even managed to get my money’s worth of Frankie’s very expensive buggy! I walked to the shop the other day with Frankie. Well, actually I hopped, with the support of his buggy. It only took me 35 minutes to get there. That’s a whole 33 minutes longer than it normally takes me. Some man passed me at my garden on his way to the shops. By the time I had crossed the road, he had passed me again with his groceries. He had a good laugh at my expense. So now I have another three weeks before I can get the cast off and if I could take one thing from this experience? Do not take your feet for granted!

Follow Kellie’s parenting adventures on

My Little Babóg’s Blog: If you’re a parenting blogger, we want to hear from you! Email us at

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23/05/2014 09:16:29

Sometimes, children are safer when you are not watching them

New 2wayFamily Offer your child the best safety by keeping them rearward facing for longer (up to the age of 4) With Maxi-Cosi Pebble and 2wayPearl, you can keep your children rearward facing up to approx. 4 years old. What’s more, both seats are very easy to use, they click-in in less than a second on the 2wayFix base. All you have to do is enjoy your family trip. The 2wayPearl is i-Size compliant and therefore the safest choice. Learn more about the new i-Size regulation on




Rearward facing Birth to approx. 1 year

Rearward facing (67 - 105cm) Approx. 6 months to 4 years


Forward facing 15 months to approx 4 years (105cm)

Now available in good nursery retail outlets.

/ @maxicosibaby

For more information visit

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21/05/2014 02/05/2014 16:23:33 10:18:54

Maternity & Infant - June/July 2014  

Ireland's finest pregnancy and parenting magazine.

Maternity & Infant - June/July 2014  

Ireland's finest pregnancy and parenting magazine.