The lovely Holly Willoughby has released her first ‘parenting advice book’ and well, it’s Holly, so of course it’s lovely. And it’s full of great tips directly from her experience as a mum of three. But I did find myself wondering what the bits were that she discussed with her fellow ‘mum’ friends; and those things that actually, we don’t really DARE say out loud outside of our female friend group, because well, people might frown at our basic ineptitude if we were to admit half of the stuff that let’s face it, we all do at some point.
So of course, I went straight to our community, and I asked our members for the things that they don’t-but-should tell new mums who haven’t a clue what they are doing. This is Truly Happy MOLO; as we share what worked for us!
MAM dummies are a fabulous substitute for a wine stopper
Let’s face it, after nine months of carrying the watermelon your tolerance to wine somewhat dips, and when it hits post-baby-bedtime wine o’clock in those early months and you can only manage one flute of fizz before passing out on the sofa, the last thing you need is to wake up to three quarters of a bottle of flat prosecco. Reach for the MAM dummy, people! They are the perfect girth, and shape, to fit perfectly into the neck of a champagne bottle and you’ll no doubt have shed loads of them lying around the house. Just label it, for god’s sake.
Heinz Chocolate Biscotti Biscuits
Yeah, sure, they are meant for babies. But I shit you not, these dainty little fingers are a taste sensation. Buy a pack of carrot sticks for the baby, and don’t even bother thinking about giving these to them because they are so delicious that you’ll be slamming them down your gullet like a mad woman before baby sees and wails and god, the guilt will set in but actually it won’t matter, because you are on a chocolate biscotti biscuit high and they can have a carrot stick, right?
Tommee Tippee bottles are great for making cocktails
How many of us don’t have all that bar-fangled stuff that measures out the proper amount of gin/vodka/tequila and well, really now we are parents we should probably be a bit more responsible and actually measure the spirit out while whipping up a Sex on the Beach or Slippery Nipple. Tommee Tippee bottles are the solution in this situation – with their ml/oz markings, you’ll always be confident that you have EXACTLY the amount of booze in there that you NEED. Hic!
A nappy is your safest bet for your wallet on the beach
On the beach? Want to nip down to the shore for a paddle, but then get into a tizz about what the JEFF to do with your valuables? EASY. Wrap them all into a nappy! Who, in god’s name, would risk nicking that?!
Coconut Oil is all-purpose WONDER STUFF
If you don’t know of the current fad of basically adding coconut oil to EVERYTHING, perhaps you don’t have an Instagram account or have been living on a remote island for the past 2 years. In the jungle. The Deep Jungle. Because it’s basically everywhere. Baby has cradle cap? Grab the coconut oil. Run out of deodorant? Grab the oil. Need mayo for your sarnie? GRAB THE OIL AND MAKE UP A BATCH YOURSELF. (What do you mean, “MAKE MY OWN MAYO?”)
Your hospital bag NEEDS a sports bottle
DON’T FRET. We aren’t suggesting you run laps around the postnatal ward post-episiotomy. What we are suggesting is that post-birth, you fill the bottle with lukewarm water and as you pee, squirt a gentle waterfall over your poor old, shattered, stingy hoo-ha. The relief of a non-hurty wee is basically a heavenly, spiritual experience post-labour and you’ll be praising the inventor of the sports bottle forever.
Get the paddling pool out for baby-led weaning
Ah, the old BLW. What a joy it is to watch your darling precious first born chew on a delicious mango, or steak, or avocado, or worse, berries. And mush them so beautifully in their tiny fists until there is a green and deep purple gloop EVERYWHERE. I was once told that BLW had directly contributed to my one year old’s phenomenal ‘casting’ skills. YOU AREN’T SHITTING ME. It’s no coincidence that the mess part is often glossed over in the weaning books, so just do yourself a favour, and grab a paddling pool and stick the highchair in it and spray it off when done. Easy peasy.
There’s a surprisingly high quantity of alcohol in quite run-of-the-mill foods
..or so my toddler thinks, mwahahaahaha. Yep, in this house, good chocolate, decent crisps and that expensive lemonade from Waitrose ALL contain ‘wine’ or ‘gin’ or if we are out in public, ‘Mummy Juice’. Delivered with a special SAD FACE when I tell them that it’s just for Mummy. My eldest daughter even asks how long it is until she is 18 and can ‘try’ some Green and Blacks chocolate… (And don’t look at me like that. Lying to your kids is a necessary part of bringing them up properly.)
Vitamins are the new sweets
Carry a pack of chewable vitamins for kids in your change bag, car, pram; but always deliver with flourish, and exuberance, and bestow your darlings with the honour of a Special Sweet every day. They get their vits, you get to feed them beige food again, and everyone is a winner.
Cheerios in the loo help perfect your boy’s aim
Yes, those little rounds of goodness are not only a delightful, mildly addictive breakfast option, but also the perfect hoopla game for when you are trying to train boys to get their wee IN the toilet bowl, rather than OUT. Be careful of allowing siblings to partake in this ‘game’ at the same time, however, as that could get a bit messy when the competitiveness comes out as fast as their wee.
Sudocrem is an amazing, non-toxic marker pen
Picture the scene; you pull into the supermarket car park, kids screamo in the back, your eyes darting for the first parent & baby space you can find when you realise, to your utter outrage, that some fucker has parked in a designated P&B space AND THEY DON’T HAVE KIDS. You feel the rage boiling, and you know you need to let them know what selfish imbeciles they are, but you don’t have a bloody pen. (WHY?! WHY GOD OF PENS?!) So what do you do? Why, you grab your trusty pot of Sudocrem, and smear it, creatively, in large letters to form ‘SELFISH DICKHEAD’ on their windscreen. Hopefully, they’ll get the point.
Have you got any tips to share? Comment below, and let us know!
Big MOLO love to our community contributors for their pearls of wisdom:
Kate Edwards, Lyndsay Telford, Louise Rogers, Hannah Douglas, Claire Meldrum, Fiona Nickless, Boodie McDougall, Emma Dunn and Katy Roszczyk