I haven’t read many parenting books, in fact I haven’t read any… and I wouldn’t say after reading Beyond the Sling that it is a parenting book in that true sense of the word.  It’s more of a this-is-how-I-did-things-and-why kind of book. A celebration of the choices Mayim Bialik and her husband rather than a guide of what you should do. It is very much a discussion on their interpretation of attachment parenting.

My Review of the fantastic Beyond the Sling

I really love the style of the book, it’s not prescriptive in anyway – it’s not telling you if you do X, Y and Z you will have a child that does A, B and C.  It makes no promises – in fact it mainly reiterates one message – you already know how to parent – you just need to learn to listen to that instinct.

The book is divided in to four sections;

1. Trust Your Instincts – which covers the basics of what attachment parenting is.

2. What Baby Needs – which covers her opinions on birth, breastfeeding, a baby’s need to be held, night-time parenting and elimination communication

3. What Baby Doesn’t Need – covering her opinions that babies/children don’t need stuff, unnecessary medical intervention, pressure or punishment

4. What Mommy Needs – which covers keeping your relationship strong and her thoughts on finding that elusive work/life balance

I found the whole book really interesting, you can feel the passion when you read it, Mayim Bialik believes in everything she writes about.  Not it a way which makes you feel like you need to agree, more in a way of “oh wow this is really great and it worked for us, what do you think?” It really feels like there is a dialogue going on (and I read the whole book in my head as if Amy Farrah Fowler – her character in The Big Bang Theory – was reading it to me, which was a little wierd and a lot funny!)

I have to say that it felt nice to read that what my husband and I have been doing is similar in some respects to attachment parenting – and also similar to what Mayim Bialik herself had done – with a P.h.D in neuroscience specialising in the hormones of attachment, you really feel like she knows what she is talking about and that there is reasons behind why I feel like I do and why I have made the choices I have made.

Beyond the Sling 1

The most affirming sections for me were the ones on breastfeeding (at 18 months Boo is still pretty much breastfed on demand) and night-time parenting (we didn’t stop night feeds until Boo was 11 months old – because it wasn’t until then that we felt she was ready to drop them). That being said there are big differences too – for example we don’t co-sleep with Boo – other than when she is poorly yet at not point did I feel like we were doing it ‘wrong’.

The section which surprised me most was the one on Elimination Communication – I confess I hadn’t even heard of this until I read this book – but essentially it is the school of thought that babies know when they need to go to the toilet and don’t want to sit in their own waste in a nappy – so by learning those signals a parent can remove the need for nappies.  I will hold my hands up – I read this open mouthed and in horror – but upon reading further I did grasp the reasoning behind it, but it is not something I could start with Boo now, and I am not sure I would have done with Boo from birth had I known about it (we are currently in a rented house and I am not sure the landlord and his carpets would approve!) but as with the rest of the book it’s very much each to their own.

All in all I have to say I really do love this book, reading it, for me was like an affirmation of what I had been feeling all along. It wasn’t giving me permission to do parent the way I was, nor was it giving me a list of instructions on how I should be parenting, more suggesting that there were reasons why I was parenting the way that I was and showing me that these types of things had worked for the author and maybe they, or some variation of them would work in my family.

Family Fever

I will be the first to admit that I suffer from Baby Brain… even though Boo is now a toddler…I forget where I have put things, I forget to do things and I have list upon list, which I then proceed to loose.  My new favourite thing (not) is to misplace my keys – or for Boo to hide them!

Review - Beets Blu Keyfinder - My review of this very useful keyfinder, as I am always loosing my keys I must say I like this alot

So when I was contact to review the Beets Blu Keyfinder I was interested by it – mainly so I didn’t have to spend time frantically looking EVERYWHERE for my keys only for them to turn up in the draw that we keeps Boo’s nappies in … (I am 99% sure Boo hid them there!).  (more…)

I was very excited when we were offered tickets to attend The Baby Show at the NEC – I had never been to The Baby Show before (or the NEC) so as you can imagine I jumped at the chance.  And I am so glad we went.  We had a really fantastic day.

The Baby Show - NEC - My review of the fantastic day we had there.  (prof. photo)

I have to say, entering the Hall I was really impressed (more…)

We are, I have to say, huge fans of The Gro Company in our house, and we have had a Gro-Egg since Boo arrived.  I like the idea of a room thermometer which displays the temperature through colour.

My Gro Egg Review

Boo is a very light sleeper, so going in to check on her in the night can often mean waking her, but we can just peek through the door and see that she is ok and see in a second what the temperature in the room is. The Gro Egg glows a different colour depending on the room temperature so you can instantly see whether the temperature is ok in the room.

gro egg a

It makes is so easy to check before we put her to bed on a night what she should be wearing in terms of her Grosuits and which Grobag (you can read my review of the GroSuits here.  .  The soft orange glow of the best temperature is a great nightlight too, it’s not too bright but bright enough that it provides enough light for Boo if she wakes in the night.

gro egg review

The Gro-Egg comes with a main plug and is literally plug in and go, couldn’t be easier than that! It’s also great because it means that it is easy to take with you should want to.. We take ours with us if we stay away for the night, as I like the consistency of the light for Boo to sleep with and also I do like to be able to make sure the room is an ok temperature.

The digital display reading on the Gro Egg shows the room temperature to the accuracy of 0.1 degree which is great and it needed during the day, because in very bright light the colour of the display is not always immediately obvious.  This is not a problem as you have the digital display to rely on.

All in all I think the Gro Egg is a great, the price was good (I paid about £13.50 for it), I am really pleased with how easy it is to set up and the fact we can instantly see the temperature in the room. We will continue to use it in Boo’s room for a long time.

Family Fever

I love shoes, I especially love shoes for Boo (shoes look so amazing in dinky sizes and I have size 8  feet and shoes look more like canoes in size 8!) so when I was asked to do a review of a pair of shoes for Boo I jumped at the chance.

My Review - Walkright Pink Flower Sandals

I picked some sandals because Boo didn’t have any sandals at that point and the weather was looking up! That lasted all of 5 minutes but at least we are prepared for the British Summer – even if it is a blink-and-you-will-miss-it kind of affair as usual.

I picked the Walkright Pink Flower & Cherry Velcro Sandals because I thought they were the cutest sandals they had, but also because buckles are a bit of a faff as I have found out recently and the soles looked really quite sturdy which is what I want for Boo.

Walkright Sandals - Pink Flower

They arrived and I wasn’t disappointed, the sandals look even cuter than the pictures – though I think you would be hard pressed to find a shoe that doesn’t look cute in a baby size 4. They fit Boo well and she loves the clip clop sound they make when she walks in them – so that was Boo sold!

The soles are really sturdy and actually heavier than I thought they would be, especially for the price (a bargain at £6.99) so I think they would last well – if we ever get a few sunny days in a row to actually use them.  Boo has worn them a lot in the house as well as outside in the garden and they haven’t rubbed or pinched.

Walkright Sandals - Pink Flower

The Velcro is large enough so that you can adjust the sandals and it have survived Boo’s repeated attempts to take the shoes off and on and they have passed the chew test (before she wore them outside I might add!!) the flower details are well attached so I don’t worry about them falling (or being ripped off).

I had never really considered getting shoes anywhere but Clarks to be honest as I worry about shoes fitting properly but for a pair of sandals for her to run around the garden in these do a great job. I was pleasantly surprised by how well made they were, how nice they fit and how sturdy the sandals/soles are.

Disclaimer – We were send the sandals free of charge for the purposes of this review but all thoughts and opinions are mine and Boo’s own. 

Family Fever
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