After Oliver was born and after all the visitors and helpers had gone home, I realized - this is it: here I am on my own with a baby and a toddler 5 days a week. Here I am running - literally all day - from room to room, trying to keep up with the demands. And there are many. It's purely exhausting, as those of you with kids will know.
Some days were okay and some were so tough that I decided if I didn't get some help, I was heading for a near-death experience. Okay - wee bit of an exaggeration, but I knew I needed help.
I hired a wonderful young woman called Sasha who now comes twice a week to spend time with Matthew, so that I can get out of the house to run errands or simply escape for a chai latte (most of the time Oliver sleeps peacefully in his car seat so it's practically like I'm alone).
Ironically, on these mornings, what I usually end up doing is shopping for kid stuff. There's so much stuff to be purchased when you have kids, and the truth of it is, I love it. I love all the bright, multi-coloured products sprinkled around my home and garden. At what other time in your life is your house filled with so much colour? Our otherwise mature, sombre-coloured home is rather dull without it all.
Some of my favourite kid-related purchases of recent are:
Water sandals from The Children's Place: rubber-soled sandals with mesh top, designed for running in and out of water - will be perfect for water parks.
Summer shorts - a selection from The Gap and Old Navy.
And my favourite - the Baby Hawk baby carrier. I love this. It's beautifully designed, easy to get on and very comfortable. Most importantly, Oliver loves it and is usually asleep within about 5 minutes. Here's a shot of it.