newborn baby photographer Norwich

Pregnancy Guest blogger - My Positive Birth Story

Pregnancy Guest blogger – My Positive Birth Story
⭐️ MY POSITIVE BIRTH STORY ⭐️

Positive Birth Story

I am so pleased I can document the birth of my second baby as it was such a magical, positive experience. I’m sad I didn’t get any photographs as it happened very quickly. I hope my story will encourage and inspire others who might be anxious about a second birth (after a challenging first birth) or anyone who has been “told” they can’t have a natural / midwife-led birth due to being classed as a high-risk pregnancy. It is ENTIRELY possible to have a positive birth experience AND to learn to trust your own body!
I can’t remember much about the birth of my first baby. I was ‘consultant-led’ due to a medical condition (ulcerative colitis) which meant additional monitoring and frequent growth scans. At 28 weeks my consultant suggested being induced at 40 weeks and because I had not fully informed myself of the wonderful process of birth and how amazing our bodies are (and what we are capable of) I readily accepted induction as I thought it meant meeting my baby sooner.

I won’t dwell much on my first birth, but I feel that because I had only ever watched “one born every minute” and hadn’t really educated myself on the different types of birth available, I simply accepted that the doctors knew best and I would merrily be on my way once the baby “popped out”. (I didn’t even know about Lochia!). My first birth will always be amazing as i was born again as a mother, but the induction, subsequent epidural and episiotomy I experienced definitely wasn’t something I was preparing for.
When I fell pregnant with my second baby I was determined to have a different birth. I had heard so many of my friends talk about how wonderful their birth experiences were. Lots of my friends had suggested hypnobirthing but I wasn’t sure what was involved. I read about Hypnobirthing online and bought a couple of positive birthing books and signed up to an online course. Hypnobirthing is a method that uses relaxation techniques, mindfulness and breathing techniques for a better birth. It’s helps a woman feel physically, mentally and spiritually prepared and reduce her awareness of fear, anxiety and pain during childbirth.

pregnancy blog Norfolk

Hypnobirthing for me, essentially focused on the positives and most importantly gave me the tools to put myself back in control my birth experience. I spent hours watching positive birth videos when Eden went to bed, I listened to my positive affirmation MP3’s daily, made my own affirmation cards and looked at 100s of beautiful birth photographers work and birth photos. I also watched positive birth stories on YouTube and read Ina May Gaskins “Guide to childbirth” book. I was actually EXCITED about giving birth. I had learned so much about how the body works, I felt proud to be a ‘wombman’ and blessed to have another chance at experiencing birth.
Due to my ulcerative colitis, I was consultant led again. I felt disappointed when my consultants suggested inducing me 2 weeks before my due date, but I remembered B.R.A.I.N (Benefits, Risk, Alternative, Instinct and Necessity) and questioned the necessity. This was hard for me as i don’t usually speak up for myself – but my research and preparation had given me the courage to consider all options and have faith in my own body (and my baby).

All seemed to be going well, at my appointment the consultants agreed to let me go until my due date intervention/induction free and give birth on the midwife-led ward! I was ecstatic because I had visions of a water birth, surrounded by my candles and listening to my birth playlist. I was absolutely sure my baby would come early and I started drinking red raspberry leaf tea, eating pineapple and bouncing around on my pregnancy ball around 36 weeks! I also went for walks, kept my positive birth playlist playing in my ears whilst walking and tried to avoid all negative vibes, only inviting positive vibes into my life. I was also enjoying pregnancy so much and liked spending my last few weeks bonding with my toddler who’s world would soon change. Each night I visualised the birth experience I wanted, manifesting those visualisations – In the hope my dreams would come true.
On my due date (Saturday 2nd November) my partner suggested going shopping to stock up. I lost my mucus plug before leaving the house and I felt excited that I might meet my baby soon! I trusted that my baby knew when he should come….
The weekend passed and we went for walks, bounced on my ball and ate curry but nothing happened. I still had faith in my body and my baby… but I was concerned that I had an extra scan on Monday 4th November and a meeting with my consultants (who I was sure would want to discuss induction).

On Monday morning (4th November) my waters broke and I was slowly trickling fluid. I felt some mild surges, but when I used the Freya app (Positive Birth Company) they were irregular and didn’t feel strong. I went for my scan and everything appeared well, the baby was a good size and my fluid (despite leaking) was “normal”. However, because my waters had broken 12hrs ago I was sent to the delivery suite to have a check and confirm my waters has gone.
The check reminded me of my first birth, the ward was bright and anything but “relaxing”. I was also disappointed to learn that I was not dilated (at all). I felt so sad. Perhaps my body didn’t know what to do after all? The consultants booked me for an induction at 12pm on the 5th November and I cried because I felt all of the hard work I had done had been wasted.
That evening my partner suggested putting my toddler to bed early and getting an early night.. to save our energy.

Around 5 am on the 5th November I felt a strong desire to get in the shower. I cried, but it felt really positive.. almost cathartic. After that, I had a word with myself. BIRTH IS BEAUTIFUL! No matter the type or how the baby makes his way earthside… I just felt really happy that he would join us today no matter what. I read some positive induction birth stories online and felt instantly positive. I felt a really strange “pop” sensation in my back whilst showering and had the urge to sit on the toilet. From that moment I started to feel REALLY powerful surges, I timed them on the Freya app and they were coming every 2-3minutes!
I rushed to call my mother who would be coming from over 30minutes away to sit with my toddler.
I called the midwife-led ward who said that unfortunately because my waters had broken over 24hrs ago I would need to give birth in the delivery ward. I didn’t mind… I was so happy that my body knew what to do.. I wished I had trusted my body sooner.

positive birth story

On the drive to the hospital, my surges were so strong – I kept doing my up-breathing technique (breathe in for 4 seconds out for 8 seconds) and soon we were pulling up in the hospital carpark. It was 07:30am and my partner said he would get the bags once we were checked in.
We JUST made it to the delivery suite where I was met by my midwife and quickly taken into our room. I asked my partner to go back and get my bags so he could set up my candles and essential oils, affirmations and photos… (I had been preparing them for months) but the midwife said if he left the room the baby could be born any moment! I couldn’t believe I was doing it! My body was in labour! The consultants visited me mid surge (I wanted to swear but I remained calm and polite). They suggested if the baby hadn’t been born within a few hours they would speed things up with the hormone drip. The midwife checked my cervix to see how dilated I was and I felt a little disappointed when she said I was 4cm… but because she knew I was doing hypnobirthing for a positive birth she said she had met mothers who had gone from 4cm-10cm within 30mins. This was the encouragement I needed. I went with my body, feeling every surge, feeling incredibly powerful. Feeling primal and instinctive and connected to the millions of other women giving birth in the world at this very moment!
Within 30mins I had gone from 4cm- 10cm and had an overwhelming feeling that I might wet myself. It was the downstage of labour! I also felt slightly panicky at this point and started to doubt I could do it. The midwife reminded me of this, she asked me to remember everything I had learnt and trust my body. It was time to meet my baby. All I could think was I haven’t even brought my bags in yet! How can I remember my positive affirmations and what to do? But I did! I had already prepared enough and my body and mind were ready!
After a quick 20min labour and 3-4 strong pushes I gave birth to my beautiful, big baby boy. I felt everything. I saw his head coming out of me and the feeling was amazing… I felt powerful, instinctive and primal. I wish I could feel it all over again.
I had done this! He was here… we did it together. My partner was brilliant and kept reminding me to breathe. He encouraged me the whole time.

Norfolk newborn photographer

Baby Theo Jack joined us at 09:14am on the 5th November like a little firework! Labour was so quick, beautiful and empowering (and drug and intervention-free as I had wished). I couldn’t have done it without all the preparation and positive energy that I feel is largely down to hypnobirthing (and indeed educating myself on “how the female body” gives birth).
Women are incredible, our bodies are truly amazing and I am so thankful to all the positive birth accounts and hypnobirthing companies in Norfolk who kindly offered advice, help and support through my pregnancy. I am pleased I trusted my body, despite my illness, I surrendered to nature – trusting myself, my mind, my body and my baby. All were connected and worked beautifully together. It was an amazing experience and I have replayed it over and over in my mind every day since.

Cristi – follow her on Instagram https://www.instagram.com/positive__mama/

newborn baby photographer Norwich
baby photographer Norwich

Pregnant guest blogger - social media

Pregnant guest blogger – social media

Sometimes, when I’m experiencing a challenging day or struggling with all things pregnancy/parenthood and work, I try to imagine what being a mother 30 years ago might have been like. What it might have looked and felt like for my own mama who would have been pregnant, running her own business and taking care of a wild 3 year old (me).

I know she attended a local toddler group and made mama friends through my playgroup. She also had a keen interest in horses, riding and running a stable-yard. I sometimes wonder if life was simpler or harder back then? I wonder if she still felt the same pressures that I sometimes feel when trying to raise a happy, healthy little girl (and baby), do well in my job, balance home/life/love and still be a good friend to others whilst being ethical in my consumerism and using less plastic!

I guess the biggest difference between our experiences might be social media. It’s interesting to consider whether these mediums have any influence or affect on the way women (in particular) feel about themselves and their parenting choices. 30 years ago Facebook, Instagram, YouTube channels and ‘blogging’ didn’t exist. There were no glossy photos of influencer mamas hitting the gym 6 weeks after labour, wanderlust mamas backpacking with their baby in tow or writing e-books about baby-led weaning or toddler-friendly meal ideas. Equally there might not have been anyone “famous” to compare oneself to, no celebrity mamas promoting slimming teas and leggings, no fitspo mamas to compare post-partum tummies against and no Insta-perfect photos of interiors/tidy kitchens or healthy-looking dinners to wish (just ever so slightly) that you had the time/energy or money to recreate in your own life.I know some of my mama friends have spoken about feeling pressure to “bounce back after baby” etc. My own experiences are slightly different, but not dissimilar. As I have mentioned in my previous blogs I was VERY naive about birth and motherhood during my first pregnancy. This is particularly true when it came to postpartum recovery. My lack of research, understanding and awareness of how the body recovers and the time it takes was limited. I found this challenging during the first 6 weeks after labour as I scrolled through images of mothers running, hiking, shopping, travelling and just generally being able to play with their children without pain and tenderness (I wondered if I might ever feel energised again). But slowly, as my strength and energy returned and I started to get out into the fresh air I realised my body was quite literally amazing and promised myself the next time I started to compare myself to others I would repeat the saying: “comparison is the thief of joy”.

I detoxed my social media accounts shortly after having my first baby, I unfollowed pages that didn’t serve me and removed any accounts that didn’t resonate or fit with my personal interests or ideals. Instead, I started to follow fellow mama accounts – particularly gentle or natural parenting ones that inspired me or gave me ideas for my own family, home, lifestyle.

 

 

 

I personally think social media can be brilliant! Sure it has its weak points, but if you only follow accounts that bring you joy and inspiration – it can open so many new doors. I try to limit my own screen time and unplug regularly. I have a set timer on my phone which only allows 40mins of online “time”. I also place my phone away in the kitchen when Eden is with me so I can ensure I am not on my phone in her presence. I tend to reply to emails or non-urgent messages once she is in bed.

Social media has actually benefitted me! I have learnt so much from fellow mamas, local support networks and local group/pages that run children’s activities or events nearby. I have also made a large network of online followers who share the same ideas and passion about health, pregnancy, motherhood, local business, sustainability, nature, forest schooling and parenting. I also feel less “alone” with some of my parenting challenges (toddler emotions, pregnancy-related health issues, general mama-guilt and ulcerative colitis).

pregnant mother
Norfolk newborn photographer

It is said that “social media and technology can make your world smaller” (and to an extent I agree – it can take you away from the here and now if the “real world” if used inappropriately), BUT I would also argue that for some (particularly new parents) it can quite literally be a lifeline. There are so many wonderful accounts parents can turn to for advice and support, a friendly face, a cup of tea or extra help. I have listed some which my friends and I have found especially helpful;

Local charities supporting families/mothers;

Get Me Out Of These Four Walls (@gmotfw)
• Breastfeeding Norfolk (@breastfeedingnorfolk)
• Breastfeeding Mum Meets (@breastfeeding_mum_meets)
• Friend In Deed (@friendindeedinsta)
• Maddison’s Movement (@maddisonsmovement)

Days out/groups/family

• Routes For Little Boots (@routesforlittleboots)
Norwich Mumbler(@norwich_mumbler)
• Norfolk Playparks (@norfolkplayparks)
• Mama Plays (@thismamaplays)
• Mummandmore (@mamandmore)
• In The Day Feed (@thedayfeed)
• Mini Me Yoga Norfolk (@minime.yoganorfolk)
• Spinning Tots (@spinningtots)
• Roots and Wings Forest School (@rootsanswingsforestschool)

Pregnancy Health

Baby Fit Norwich (@babyfitnorwich)
• Pelvic Flaw Fairy (pelvic_flaw_fairy)
• Wellfit Mama Physio (wellfitmama_physio)
• Mama Me Time (@mamametime)
• Rowan House (@rowanhouse)
• Cherished Placentas (@cherished_placentas)
• Motherly Love UK (motherlylove.uk)

Local Birth/Pregnancy/Babies

Jess Wilkins Photography (@jess_wilkins_photography)
• Positive Birth Movement Norwich (@positivebirthmovementnorwich)
• Bloom Hypnobirthing (@bloom_hypnobirthing)
• Love Hypnobirthing (@lovehypnobirthing)
• MLBUH (NNUH) official (@mlbunnuh)
• Your Happiest Day (@yourhappiestday_hypnobirthing)
• About Birth And Babies (@aboutbirthandbabies)
• No Milk Like Mamas (@nomilklikemamas)
• Lactation Motivation (@lactation_motivation)
• Hey Wolf Mama (@heywolfmama)
• The Family Sleep Coach (@thefamilysleepcoach)
• Blossom and Breathe (blossom_breathe)

• Mini First Aid (@mfanorfolk)
• Yoga With Lucya (@yogawithlucya)
Mama Well-Being / Movement / Fitness
• BabyFit Norwich (@babyfitnorwich)
• Grow Her Wild (@growherwild)
• ZenMuma (@zenmuma)
• Synergy Health & Fitness (@synergyhealthandfitnesspt)
• Mamas_Mind_Menu (@mamas_mind_menu)
• Sam James Mama Coach (@samjames.themumcoach)

I have possibly missed a few as I follow so many amazing local businesses, inspiring mama’s and pregnancy/parenting accounts. There is a wealth of knowledge, support and expertise out there and so much of it is in our doorstep. I never even knew so many local mama businesses existed.
So whilst the debate on social media as a good or bad entity exists, I would say it is as positive and as helpful as you make it. Streamline the accounts you follow, detox yourself from unnecessary content that doesn’t fit your life or makes you feel pressured, focus on pages that mean something to you or inspire you, look in to local groups, research local events, support local mama business and reach out for support (if you need it).
To read Cristi other blogs click here.


hospital bag

Guest Blog - Packing my hospital bag - then and now

Guest blog Packing my hospital bag then and now. 

 

Why am I considering packing my hospital bag at only 32 weeks I hear you ask? Well… in all honesty, during my first pregnancy I left everything until the last minute, a few weeks before I was scheduled to be induced and my hospital bag choices were poor to say the least.
In my last blog I mentioned how naive I felt during my first pregnancy. I never truly informed myself of what giving birth entailed and how best to prepare for a positive and calm birth. Instead, I followed everything the consultants told me.. I never questioned anything or researched what terms such as “induction” or “birthing plan” meant. My hospital bag was no different. I downloaded a small list (probably from Pinterest) of the ‘general’ things mamas-to-be should pack and left my little mini suitcase in the baby nursery until the date arrived for me to be induced.
I was so excited about meeting my baby (Eden) that I naively assumed being induced meant I could simply meet her quicker. My hospital bag contained a few baby grows/sleep suits and vests, nappies, muslins, blanket and a going home outfit for the baby (I was so excited about it I forgot to pack my own “going home clothes”). I also remembered a towel, a night dress, tooth brush/hair brush, some knickers and I had read that I would need thick sanitary pads (I took a handful). I was most excited about the snacks I had chosen to munch during labour (a big bag of dried pineapple and some jelly babies!). I didn’t have a birth plan because my belief was it was better to go with the flow and not have any plans set in stone.
It is safe to say I was a little overwhelmed after giving birth and I definitely remember having to call my mum and ask her to bring me some disposable mesh panties and more pads! (I walked out of hospital the same day as giving birth wearing my pyjama bottoms and partners coat (it was snowing).
Fast forward two years to this (my second) pregnancy and I am incredibly keen to learn from my first birth experience.. including my hospital bag!

hospital bag

So what have I packed so far and what do I intend to take with me? (A lot more than jelly babies and a hair brush this time!)….

For the baby… I am keeping it simple! A friend has kindly gifted me some of her baby boy sleep suits and my mum has bought some cute new baby vests. Of course the usual blanket, muslin cloth, going home outfit (it will be November so we plan to wrap him warmly) and a newborn hat I bought recently that was knitted by someone’s nanny, all the proceeds went to a local breastfeeding charity and as I plan to breastfeed again the hat was a given. I am trying to be more eco-friendly in my choices this time. We plan to use cloth nappies (re-useable nappies) and I have spent a long time researching the different types and styles. I am still learning but I have managed to source around 40 (recommended for a stash) from local pre-loved groups and for-sale sites. Baby wipes (I also have some reusable cloth wipes), some disposable nappies to start us off and Edens old baby car seat for the journey home… (I think I have remembered everything?).

As for me.. although I always travel light, I am certainly more prepared than I was with my first birth experience. Although I wouldn’t change anything about my first labour, Im aiming for a calmer, more positive and less clinical birth than before. For this to happen I have ensured I have packed the following:

  • – BIRTH PLAN! This time I have fully researched all my options and know what I want/need to have the birth I wish for. Expressing my wishes on paper helps the midwives and consultants, although I am flexible to adapt should there be a necessity to do so.
  • – affirmation cards to place all around the room whilst I’m in labour to help my mind guide my body.
  • – battery operated tea lights to add to the relaxing environment
  • – affirmation MP3 and relaxing music
  • – iphone with surge (contraction timer) app
  • – positive birthing book (hypnobirthing) giving me the tools I need to have a positive birth
  • – I’m still researching essential oils but I have heard Clary Sage can have a calming effect.
  • – Positive notes I have made, little mantras to read and guide my breathing
  • – wireless headphones (I may need to borrow some) as I wish to be as mobile and free to roam around as possible… I don’t want to be “connected” to anything
  • – birthing ball (i will likely use one supplied) I want to remain active and upright
  • – A large refillable canteen (drinks bottle) as fluids are essential to ensure all the oxygen and blood flows around your body to your uterus. (I also got dehydrated last time!)
  • – SNACKS! This time I’m opting for lots of dried fruit, salty oat cakes, home made granola and energy balls (usually made up of dates/seeds/nuts/cocoa). Pineapple and raspberry leaf tea… quite possibly a big bag of sweets.
  • – As for my body… a big pack of disposable knickers and pads (I learnt the hard way last time), coconut oil for my lips (they were blistered and cracked in my first labour), a familiar t-shirt or top to give birth in and a bikini top if I am lucky enough to get a room with a birthing pool. Going home trousers/top, hair brush, tooth brush and paste. I have heard witch hazel can help with postpartum healing and indeed many people recommend something like “spritz-for-bits”.. but I need to research those options further. Oh and a picture of Eden.. as this will be the first time I have ever spent more than 8hours away from her since she was born.

I have roughly 8 weeks until my “due date”, so I am sure I will discover more essentials to pack. However – it is clear my choices this time are more informed and geared towards making the environment relaxing, calm and positive. I am excited and I finally feel prepared.


baby sleepiNG

Norwich Mumbler Birth Story

Norwich Mumbler Birth Story

 

Norwich Mumbler is back with her final guest blog and birth story . …

 

Bathroom Floor Baby…

Baby number 2 was an accidental bathroom floor baby and it was actually such a lovely experience (I would absolutely recommend considering a homebirth, if you can!), that when I found out I was pregnant with number 3 I immediately knew I wanted to do it again…but planned this time!

The plan was to stay at home and give birth in the bathroom again (wipe clean).  My dad even bought some Galaxy ripples so I could have one afterwards, just like I’d had the time before.

The meeting with the midwife at 36-weeks went well and she went through the checklist of things I should get ready.  I figured I had plenty of time and still didn’t have anything ready when the day came. Typical that I went into labour early!

The Best Laid Plans…

But as with all the greatest plans, you have to be ready for them to change.  Two weeks and a day before my due date, I woke in the early hours of the 14th June with some ouchy twinges, but went back to sleep.  Then when I went to the toilet at 5am I realised I was wet.  I’ve never had pelvic floor problems during or after pregnancy, so I felt a bit annoyed that it had randomly started now…or had it? I didn’t feel like I’d wet myself as I still needed a wee.  It was then it came to me that it could possibly be something else…ah crap, I was going to have to push out a baby today!

I told my sleepy husband I suspected I may be in labour and went back to bed to see if I had any twinges that indicated I was right.  I then started to bleed, which told me something was definitely starting, so I rang Medicom at around 6am.  They said a midwife wouldn’t be able to get to me until 8am (something they hadn’t mentioned at my homebirth appointment), but as I was bleeding they would prefer me to go to N&N to be monitored.

 

Cue very mild panic that I a) hadn’t sorted any form of childcare plan for child 1 and child 2 b) hadn’t packed any kind of hospital/labour bag c) could potentially give birth in the car if things move as fast as they did with baby number 2.

My eldest’s ex-childminder thankfully said she’d come round straight away to look after the girls.  My husband sorted out breakfast for them as they were now awake, and I threw some basics in a bag.

 

The Main Event…

 

I needn’t have worried about giving birth in the car as everything slowed down en route to the hospital (a good job because there were roadworks stopping us going the way we would normally and we had to queue for a bit!) and were still going slow when we got there.  I was hooked up onto the monitors in Delivery Suite by a lovely midwife, Wendy, and student, Shauna.

We chatted about Dougs.  Wendy’s husband is called Doug and loves talking to everyone, my dad is called Doug and loves talking to everyone…all of this in between contractions that were quite mild, but a bit ouchy, and not lasting very long.  I told Wendy of my birth experience with baby number 2 and she agreed that when things started properly she thought it would go fast.

 

After around 15 minutes of monitoring everyone was happy that baby was fine and I was fine, so I was unhooked and could stand up again.  And that is when it happened.

You know that picture of different foods that represent a dilating cervix, cheerio size to bagel?  I literally felt like I went from cheerio to bagel in an instant.  Bam.  I’d gone from chatting Dougs to suddenly only being able to say ‘mat’ (as in I wanted a mat to get down on the floor) and ‘Gas and air’.

20 minutes and I think two pushes later out popped baby number 3…’It’s a boy!’

Norwich Mumbler Birth Story
Norwich Mumbler Birth Story

Fast forward…

I didn’t mind having to go into hospital in the end as I’m so pleased I got to have support from Midwife Wendy, who just kept telling me to trust my body, which I did.  The tea and toast afterwards on Delivery suite always tastes amazing and I was so well looked after!

Now it’s 8-weeks later and I’ve so far learned that having three children is HARD, but seeing how much the girls absolutely dote on him and start to get smiles from him in return makes all the sleepless nights, crying (me!!) and constant plate spinning worth it.

 

Katrin aka Norwich Mumbler 

Below are images from Remy’s newborn shoot, Katrin wasnt keen on having her photo but i think you will all agree she looks great! to book a shoot click here to get in touch.

 

baby and mum
baby yawning
baby sleepiNG

family of 5

Why I booked Jess three times to be my newborn photographer for my family

Why I booked Jess three times to be my newborn photographer for my family – guest blog

Kirsteen kindly answered some questions for me  for this blog, as to why she booked for the third time this year, to be her newborn photographer for her family. They are the first family I have captured 3 babies for and it was lovely to do so!

What was important to you when choosing your photographer?

The style of the images was first in my mind. Jess had just started when I found her. I’d met a lady at a birthing class and befriended her on Facebook – she posted a photo Jess had taken. It was stunning and I wanted the same for my baby! I hadn’t thought about getting professional photos done until I saw that image. But it is Jess’ calm nature with the children and clear passion for what she does that is the reason we go back time and time again. Since meeting Jess I’ve also realised how important it is that a photographer is trained in how to handle and pose tiny babies.

newborn photographer for family

What stands out for you about your experience with me?

Your calmness. Getting 2/3 children dressed up, stopping them from getting filthy, in the car and all in a happy good mood is hard work! We’ve had a couple of trips where our eldest didn’t want to play ball but something about the way you interact with the children brings calm and means you always get great shots. Of course that is so important with a sleeping newborn too!

Was there anything that surprised you?

There was one Christmas shoot which for me was a disaster. The kids were unruly and rude and I was so embarrassed. Jess was amazing. She wasn’t fazed at all and even offered for us to come back even though it wasn’t her fault at all and we’d used up our allotted time. But actually somehow, I’d say by a miracle but actually that’s an injustice as it’s due to her skill, she managed to get done amazing photos. I was pretty speechless when I saw them

family of 5

What was your favourite pose & why?

On a newborn shoot the naked curled up photos are my favs. They are adorable, simple and natural. Very often on the family shoots though my favourite are natural ones Jess has caught when we are laughing or looking at each other.

how do you feel when you look at the photos ?

Oh I just adore them. I treasure photos. They are my memories and I pore over them to see how the children have grown and changed from year to year. I feel proud of my family and very lucky to have such beautiful images of them.

What’s your favourite memory from each session?

I loved at the last shoot the little welcome bored with our names on. It was one of the first times I’d seen the three boys names together and also just helped the elder too feel included as it was mostly about the baby really.

The Christmas shoots have become a bit of a family tradition. I love sourcing their outfits but I have to do it quite early as the shoots are in November! It’s the first but if Christmas shopping I do and the photos are fab to get us into the Christmas spirit. Jess also have an enviable collection of cute wooden toys and baby outfits. What’s not to love about looking at all of those?

newborn photographer for family

why did you choose me again with so much choice?

Two things: the quality of your photos which are always faultless and the way you interact with the children.  I love your style of photography. It’s simple and beautiful. But equally as important is the positive experience we have every time.
I hope this blog gives you a little insight as to why families trust me time and time again. To have an informal chat about any type of photoshoot I offer please use my contact form! Jess x

newborn photographer for family

baby smiling Norwich

Am I too late to book my baby in for a newborn shoot ?

Am I too late to book my baby in for a newborn shoot ?

This blog is from Mum Hannah,  who thought she may have been too late to book her baby in for a newborn shoot and her review of her newborn mini shoot.

As soon as Isabella was born I knew I wanted to have some newborn photos taken of her. I had seen Jess’ Facebook page pop up and liked her natural style and the fact she specialised and had trained in baby photography so decided to book in with her.

But as I’m sure lots of new mums can relate, weeks went by in a newborn haze and I had forgotten to book in. I also felt very anxious about taking my daughter out when she was so little.

I was (I now realise irrationally!) worried about what I would do if I couldn’t stop her crying/ if she needed to be fed/ if she needed to be changed.

So I ended up waiting until Isabella was 11 weeks old before I messaged Jess. Thankfully she had a convenient free slot a week later and we popped along to her studio for a newborn mini shoot.

Am I too late to book my baby in for a newborn shoot

I needn’t have worried! As soon as we arrived Isabella needed feeding so we snuggled up on Jess’ comfy sofa in her beautiful studio and fed, whilst Jess got me a drink and discussed what sort of photos we wanted taken.

The whole session felt incredibly relaxed and I felt completely comfortable with Jess handling my daughter. In fact Isabella loved her and we have several beautiful photos that Jess managed to take of her smiling!

Before the shoot I was definitely worried that we had missed the boat for newborn photography,

but having her photos taken when she was a little older enabled us to capture her growing personality, facial expressions and us as a family in a more relaxed state.

Jess even got some photos of me breastfeeding which I will really treasure.

too late to book my baby in for a newborn shoot

For anyone who feels like they’ve missed the opportunity to capture their babies when they are tiny I would definitely recommend booking in with Jess.

I’m now really glad we waited and am so grateful to Jess for making the session so laid back, and for the amazing set of photos she captured. (I had to have them all!!)

Thanks so much Jess for the care and attention you put into your work. We will be back!

 

If you are wantig to discus a booking your baby it really isnt too late i’d love to hear from you!Contact Me

 

Jess


mumbler blog

Pregnant Guest blogger Norwich Mumbler

Pregnant Guest Blogger Norwich Mumbler – 29 weeks update

When they say each pregnancy feels like it goes faster, they’re not lying.

 

I am 29 weeks pregnant now, which means only a mere 11 weeks to go.  At the beginning, 11 weeks feels like it the last forrrrrrrever, but now it feels like time is running away and B-Day (Birth Day) will be here before I know it.

 

I think one of the main problems is I’m trying to organise a rather large Norwich Mumbler children’s activities event at the beginning of June…and I’m due on 29th June.  My husband was unimpressed when I told him my plan and said he would refuse to help me.  Of course, he will help, he was just saying it out of protest that I was going to attempt this event at 37 weeks pregnant, but having an event deadline before the baby deadline is definitely making time feel like it is going even faster.

DELEGATION will be my word of the day for the event on 9th June – if only I could delegate on the 29th June too, ha!

 

Even though time is FLYING, I’ve been pretty good at taking regular bump pics and I’ve posted a few bump photos on my Instagram stories (for some reason it feels less public than posting them to the Mumbler FB page?).  Quite a few people have commented on what a neat bump it is and I do always seem to grow a good bumpy type bump, but as ‘neat’ as the bump looks, it is now 85% stretchmarks.

 

They radiate from my belly button to around the diameter of a football.  I know body positivity and ‘loving the stripes’ is very popular at the moment, and when the bump is full of the baby it is way easier to accept them, but it is the aftermath that I am slightly dreading.

 

I am trying to feel ok about them though and remind myself that my body has stretched itself to its limit not once, not twice, but THREE times and so far grown two incredibly hilarious, stubborn, kind and noisy humans.  Hopefully, number 3 will be just as hilarious and kind, and a little bit less stubborn and noisy, but that it will still remind me it’s ok not to be ok with my post-baby body…it’s still damn amazing.

 

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To book a maternity shoot or newborn feel free to contact me for a chat!

Norwich Mumbler

mumbler blog

Guest blog 20 week scan Norwich Mumbler

20 Week Scan Norwich Mumbler 

What is the question you’ve been asked most when pregnant?

I honestly thought, having two girls, that the question I would get asked most would be, ‘So, you’re trying for a boy then?’ but instead, when we’ve told people we’re having a third, most people have gone with something along the lines of, ‘Are you mental?’ – ha!

If I’m completely honest, one of the reasons I REALLY wanted a third was because my mum’s friend is one of 3 girls and I loved the idea of my two being part of a trio of sisters when they grow up.  Obviously, I can’t guarantee that they’ll all get on and want to be friends, but that’s what I’m going to aim for…we just have to get through the teenage years!

The second question we’ve been asked most is, ‘Are you going to find out what you’re having?’.  We waited the full 40+8 weeks and 39+5 weeks to find out what the girls were and there was nothing quite like having my husband tell me they were girls when they ‘popped’ out - in fact, these are some of my favourite memories from their birthdays. 

But this time around, I thought maybe we should find out and have a different experience by knowing what flavour the little bun in the oven is.  Friends that I’ve spoken to have said the moment of birth wasn’t any less special because they already knew what they were having, it was still a surprise when they found out at the 20-week scan…and I was SO TEMPTED when the scan came.  We still weren’t sure whether we would find out as the sonographer was checking the little bun over, but we just couldn’t bring ourselves to say those words, ‘Tell us!’.

And then it was done, scan complete, gender still a mystery.  I have no idea what I’m looking for those scans…was that a gender part? Why does my unborn baby resemble a turkey? Is that a foot or an arm?

20 week scan Norwich

All will be revealed at the end of June and one thing is for sure, whether it’s a boy or a girl, it’ll be part of our very own trio.

Kartin aka Norwich Mumbler

 

 

If you considering some maternity photos please email me today or use my contact form  ^^ contact me tab above to chat and book in - Jess. 


breastfeeding Norfolk

Breastfeeding Myths Guest Blog by Sian - No Milk Like Mama’s

Breastfeeding Myths Guest Blog by Sian - No Milk Like Mama’s consultants on breastfeeding in Norfolk

 

breastfeeding Myths Norfolk

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  1. Breastfeeding is painful

Whilst some discomfort can happen when you first start breastfeeding, truly painful is not ‘normal’ and is a sign that your baby does not have an optimal attachment to the breast. Too many times breastfeeding supporters see women who have struggled on through painful feeds, severe nipple trauma and dreading feeding their baby, with the misconception that it was normal to be painful and they just weren’t coping with this. This can lead to further issues that may take more support to unravel. Getting good quality support in place quickly if breastfeeding is painful can be key to breastfeeding success.

  • Breastfeeding mothers get less sleep

It is often thought that breastfeeding mothers get less sleep. However, research has shown us that overall breastfeeding mothers get more sleep. Hormones in breastmilk help our babies fall back to sleep quickly, and the hormones released whilst breastfeeding, help mums to do the same. A breastfeed in the night can usually be a quick and calm way to settle babies back to sleep with minimal disruption.

  • I’ll never be able to be away from my baby

In the newborn days it is true to say that breastfeeding can feel quite intense, but so can bottle feeding. Making feeds, heating water, washing bottles, sterilizing, none of this is easy. All mothers work extremely hard. Whilst breastfeeding may feel a little all-consuming in those early weeks, as your baby grows, your breastmilk changes. An increase in the casein: whey protein ratio in breastmilk enables babies to go a little longer between feeds, perhaps giving mum some time to relax and spend some time on herself.

  • Breastfeeding will make my breasts ‘saggy’

Nope, you can blame pregnancy hormones, age and a dose of gravity for that one!

  • I’ll have to stop when I go back to work

Many babies are already weaned onto solids by the time mum returns to work. Babies can eat meals, snacks and drink water when away from mum and return to the breast when they are reunited. If your baby does accept milk feeds when away from you, this can be given in a sippy or open cup, bottles are not always necessary. Health and Safety laws protect the needs of breastfeeding mothers to enable them to express at work and store their breastmilk.

  • I can’t breastfeed if I’m unwell

The opposite could not be truer. It is very important to continue to breastfeed when you are unwell. Your body makes antibodies against the specific virus you have, and these are then given to your baby via your breastmilk, giving them greater protection from this. Aren’t our bodies amazing?!

  • I can’t breastfeed if I am taking medication

Many medications are compatible with breastfeeding, and if a medication is not, alternatives can often be found. Please seek support to discuss this further if this concerns you.

  • It is easy

Whilst breastfeeding is natural, it is a learned skill of both mother and baby requiring time, patience and support. Good quality, compassionate and consistent support from family, friends, and professionals enables the breastfeeding relationship to be an enjoyable one.

 

Sian Aldis, International Board Certified Lactation Consultant
IBCLC. BA(Hons). FdSc.

Sian runs No Milk Like Mama’s and hosts a FREE Breastfeeding Support Café at Rowan House (Health & Wellbeing Centre) in Hethersett on the 1st and 3rd Friday of each month between 10am and 12noon. Everyone is welcome to attend this drop in service. For more details of the services offered, please see http://www.nomilklikemamas.co.uk/or find her on Facebook and Instagram.

 

 

Breastfeeding Myths Norfolk

 

 

To book a maternity shoot or newborn feel free to contact me for a chat!


The Studio

6 tips from a mum down the line for new mums, Norwich

6 tips from a mum down the line for new mums, Norwich. 

 

  1. Trust Your New Mama Instincts.

It’s a cliché, you’ll hear it again and again but trust me. There really is nothing like your new superpowers… the maternal instincts. You know your baby better than anyone if you don’t feel someone is listening to it don’t be afraid to stand tough because at the end of the day its better to overreact than to have something missed. I have never regretted asking for a second opinion or refusing to leave a GP until I was listened to and so far I haven’t been proven wrong.

  • ‘I’m overwhelmed and I don’t know if I can do this.’

I don’t know a mum who hasn’t experienced this in some measure: either a wave of this that passed or who was brave enough to talk to someone because it was something more serious.

Please don’t suffer in silence. At the smallest end of the scale I would say breathe, speak to your mum, some friends, your partner, someone you can trust and share the feelings because with so much parenting, ‘it’s just a phase’ even if it doesn’t feel like it.

Be easy on yourself, you are a new mum not wonder woman.

At the other end of the scale, please don’t suffer in silence there is wonderful help out there for post-natal depression, for those anxious from a traumatic birth or for any other feelings that are weighing you down. Please go to your GP for support and advice.

This is not a sign of weakness it is something that happens, and you deserve to be supported through it.

  • Birth didn’t go as you expected

It rarely does – as a baby photographer based in Norwich.  I hear new birth stories on a weekly basis and I want to say to any new mums to be or freshly made mums – they rarely do.

Be kind to yourself about your experience… if you had a drug free, water birth order in but ended up dosed up on all the drugs and waiting for more… well, if that’s what got you through then amazing! … you made and pushed out a human being!

However, you delivered your baby… you were incredible and you achieved an amazing thing. C-section, natural, home, hospital, epidural, drugs, no drugs… all that matters is there are 2 healthy humans at the end of it. Mum and baby.

 

  • Friendships Can Change.

This was a hard lesson to learn. When your world shifts its centre to a tiny small human it can mean your priorities change and alongside that friends/family member attitudes towards you can also change. This is not a negative commentary, but simply an acknowledgment that life brings people in and out of it for various reasons and for many this is one big turning point in life that moves people in and out of your life.

Friends without children may not understand your new life (I know I didn’t maybe support friends who were new mothers before I became one myself) Girls nights may be rarer, relationships with partners may become strained (have you heard the one about who is more tired?!)

It all gets easier but don’t feel alone if friendships ebb and flow differently. All us mums have experienced it and if you are lucky, you’ll meet some new amazing friends through being a mum.

  • Be kind to yourself. 

The most important of my points. Be kind. To Yourself. There is so much advice out there for keeping a baby happy… and after all that’s your new role in life. But a happy baby needs to be supported by a happy mum.

Care for yourself as you do your baby…. Nourish yourself, rest, get fresh air and get support when it feels too much. Small things such as watching your favourite film while feeding your baby, having a bath, staying in your PJs all day and just ignoring the washing… it’s not easy but sometimes it is vital.

  • Get Some Fresh Air

It’s funny how I resented being forced to have fresh air as a child. However, since the moment my children were born something switched and I genuinely now believe that fresh air can cure anything. Feeling sad? Get fresh air I am lucky living in Norwich there are so many lovely walks. Got a cold? Get fresh air. Feeling stressed? Happy? On the cusp of cabin fever? Fresh air.

Daylight is good for us, walking and moving is good for you and if you want to start exercising a bit post-baby, it’s a lovely, gentle way to start. I always used to invite my new mum friends for walks so we could enjoy it together. I did blog my Norwich top 5 baby friendly cafes 2 of which are in based in a park - win-win walk and cake!

Jess - I am a newborn and family photographer in Norwich, also feel read to read more blogs here.

new mums Norwich