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04 Dec 13

Fun home-made pizzas for children

It has happened to most of us working mums. After a long day at the office, one of the last things we want to do is slave over a hot cooker preparing dinner, so we phone our favourite pizza place and order one for delivery. The kids love pizza, and mum gets a break. It’s a win-win, right? Not exactly. With all the grease, fat and less-than-fresh toppings, delivery pizzas should not be on regular rotation in our diets. But that doesn’t mean all pizzas are off the menu! While I certainly love the occasional delivery pizza, I’ve discovered a healthy and fairly easy recipe for home-made pizzas that tastes even better. Making them is also a fun activity that my two sons Jack and Rodger and I can do together, and the leftovers can be used for packed lunches throughout the rest of the week. I confess that sometimes I save time […]

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29 Nov 13

Making sure a working mum’s children don’t feel neglected

Time flies when you are a busy working mum. We begin the week making promises to spend more time with family, but before we know it, the entire week has slipped by, and we’ve spent most of our time not with your children, but with work. Whether you are working out of financial necessity or for your own well-being, the work-life balance can be challenging for mum and kids, who don’t see each other as often as they’d like. It’s easy to feel guilty, but there are certain things you can do to make sure your children don’t feel neglected because of your schedule. Breakfast bonding and lunch box notes I like to give my boys Jack and Rodger little reminders throughout the week that I love them so they never doubt it, even if I’m not around. I find that the kids are most receptive in the morning than in the afternoon […]

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18 Nov 13

Staying positive as a working mum

With everything that we working mums must juggle, staying positive can be difficult. When you’re tired, stressed, and haven’t had any me time in ages, of course it’s hard to maintain a good attitude! But it’s important to fight negativity because negative thinking can easily grow into negative situations, which can translate into unnecessary problems for you to deal with. Moreover, negativity affects your happiness, and an unhappy mum means an unhappy family. On the contrary, positive thinking can have beautiful results. It’s a skill that takes some time to learn (at least, it did for me!), but with a little practice it can become second nature. Smiles and kindness No matter how sad you feel about a situation, smiling is a great way to alleviate stress and help change your frame of mind for the positive. Also, try finding the humour of the situation and laughing about it. If you are […]

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15 Nov 13

Finding a reliable baby-sitter

It had been a long couple of weeks. Being a working mum to two young boys is exhausting! Thank goodness that the weekend was finally here, and I had some long-awaited me time planned for my husband and I – dinner and a movie – and a baby-sitter booked to look our sons at home. But only a few hours before our date, I received a message from the baby-sitter: “I’m so sorry, but I won’t be able to come over after all.” There went our evening out! When free time is at such a premium and your limited social life hangs in the balance, there is nothing quite as crushing as having to cancel plans that you have been looking forward to all week. That’s why finding a reliable baby-sitter whom you can trust is so important. I learned the hard way! Ask friends or family No one knows […]

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13 Nov 13

Should working mums feel guilty?

As a working mum, you trade hours with your children for hours at the office. Whether we are working for financial reasons, for the love of the job, or both, we working mums feel guilty from time to time for our choice. I know I do! As long as we remain loving, hands-on mothers to our children, we shouldn’t feel guilty. After all, our work ethic sets a good example for our kids! But simply telling ourselves not to feel guilty doesn’t always get rid of the negativity. So how can we deal with this nagging feeling? Self-reflection A bit of self-reflection can help you put things into perspective. Make a list of reasons why you work, and carefully read them over while asking yourself, “Is this best for my family?” Is it for the money? Clearly, you are doing the right thing. Is it for your happiness? You are […]

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05 Nov 13

Tips for working mums who have trouble falling asleep

I often used to have trouble falling asleep come bedtime. It’s not that I wasn’t tired. In fact, as a married working mum with two sons who wakes up at 6.30 every morning, I was (and still am) exhausted! But when you are busy and engaged all day, it can be hard to turn off your brain at night, which can prevent you from getting enough sleep. Sleep loss can have a negative impact on your day-to-day performance. Lack of sleep causes stress, affects your decision-making, and can cause weight gain. It can also contribute to a negative mentality. We don’t want any of that! So if you are finding it tough to wind down after a long day, here are some of my tips. Establish a bedtime routine Having a regular bedtime routine has really helped me fall asleep better. Reserve the hour before your bedtime for some quiet winding-down time, […]

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22 Oct 13

Quick and easy packed lunches for kids

As a working mum, it’s sometimes tempting to save time and energy by sending my children off to school with a store-bought packed lunch or with a few pounds of pocket money so they can buy lunch. But those meals are usually high in the bad stuff and low in the good, so I try to avoid doing this. Instead, I like to prepare quick and easy packed lunches that are also tasty and healthy. The best packed lunches are the ones I can whip up and keep in the fridge during the week, so when it comes to filling my sons Jack and Rodger’s Spiderman lunchboxes in the morning, it only takes 5 to 10 minutes. I always include a piece of fruit and sometimes a small piece of chocolate if the boys have been good, and I avoid fizzy drinks at all costs. Here are some of my go-to recipes for […]

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07 Oct 13

The importance of a working mum’s me time

Wake up, get ready, get the children ready, make breakfast, eat breakfast, and make packed lunches. Take the kids to school, work, pick the kids up from school, take the kids to extracurricular activities, cook a healthy dinner, eat, shower, and sleep. Repeat five days a week. My day-to-day routine is quite hectic, leaving very little time to spend time alone or with my husband John. But a working mum’s me time is important and something that shouldn’t be skipped. Otherwise, you will drive yourself crazy! Alone time It’s not always easy to make a dramatic upheaval to your timetable just to make sure you get a little bit of alone time. Parenting is a 24-hour job. But stealing moments here and there for yourself can make a huge difference. Don’t make the mistake of thinking ‘me time‘ doesn’t matter. Retirement is a long way away, and you will wear yourself […]

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30 Sep 13

Stress management tips for working mums

Stress is an inevitable part of being a working mum. Balancing work and family is no easy feat! But just because stress is inevitable doesn’t mean there is nothing you can or should do about it. Because stress can have negative effects on your body and behaviour, including headache, stomach upset, chest pain, insomnia, irritability and anxiety, which can in turn can have negative effects on your performance at work and as a parent, it is important for working mums to learn how to manage stress in a healthy way. One of the most immediate ways to handle stress is to diffuse it. Go somewhere you can be alone for a moment, close your eyes, breathe in for 10 seconds, and breathe out for 10 seconds. Remember the last time you felt content, and hold onto that feeling in your mind. Now, put the kettle on, make a cup of calming camomile […]

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18 Sep 13

Post-It Notes be gone! Tips for better organisation

Being a working mum means having an endless to-do list. Between work, the children, food shopping, budgeting, housework, family and friends, it’s impossible to keep it all in my head. But a fridge covered in Post-It Notes reminding you to do this and that is a recipe for disorganization. Believe me, I’ve tried it! The notes fall off, become lost and are difficult to categorize. There are much better and less wasteful ways to be organised than those neon slips of paper. For example, I keep my to-do list in a computer spreadsheet that I constantly email to myself so I can read it on whatever device I am closest to. I also colour-code tasks based on priority to ensure things are finished on time. Green means I have plenty of time, but as the colour goes from blue to pink to purple, it means I have less time. I don’t […]

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