Make Your Own Natural Baby Bath Soak

Make Your Own Natural Baby Bath Soak

For a natural baby bath alternative, this recipe will do the trick. If you are looking to use a natural remedy in your baby’s bath, using simple ingredients that ensures that your baby’s skin is kept chemical-free and feels super soft, then try this easy to make at home method. Reduce your plastics, reuse your muslin and compost the waste. This Baby Bath Soak is easy and fun to make.

[Disclaimer: Please note this post may contain affiliate links. This means I may receive a commission if clicked at no extra cost to you. Though the opinions remain my own.]

Healing Power of Plants

So, if your baby gets dry skin, or you are in need of a remedy for the symptoms of Chicken Pox, Eczema or viral rashes. This easy to make natural recipe can be a lifesaver!

Suitable from Newborns onwards, there are no nasty chemicals or preservatives. A perfect natural option for baby bath time.

Natural Remedies for your Baby

Oats have been used for thousands of years to naturally feed the skin, calming and nourishing it is a great base for this remedy.

Lavender has been used medicinally for centuries and is known to be both anti-inflammatory and anti-septic.

Together these are both safe, natural, edible ingredients. If your baby swallows any of the water, it should not cause any side effects.

Dried Lavender
Dried Lavender

Time needed: 10 minutes.

How to Make your Natural Bath Soak

  1. Get your ingredients together

    Oats – 200 grams
    Dried Lavender or Essential Oil – a handful of dried or 10 drops of oil
    Muslin – Cut into large squares (approx 12cm x 12 cm)
    Ribbon – Cut into pieces for tying (approx 10cm long)
    Large Bowl

  2. Mix Together

    Put your oats and lavender together in the bowl. Mix thoroughly.

  3. Tie

    Scoop out a large handful of the mixture and put into the middle of your muslin square. Tie the muslin closed tightly (WARNING – if it is not secure, the mixture will come out in the bath)

  4. To Use

    Just throw the bath soak into the bath. The water will turn milky from the oats and the smell will be amazing.

  5. Reuse

    When you have finished, untie and empty the mix into the garden compost. The muslin can be washed and used again.

For your baby’s bath

Reduce your plastics

Not only is this Baby Bath Soak a great natural remedy to use with your baby, children or in fact the whole family; but you are also reducing your plastics, reducing your waste and lowering your toxic load too!

Save Money

As the main ingredient is so readily and cheaply available, the cost per bath soak is tiny! You can often pick the lavender from your own garden, or if you are purchasing a bottle of Doterra Lavender Oil then you will realise that it lasts a long time, you should be able to make at least 100 Baby Bath Soaks with just one bottle.

More natural remedies

If you would like to know more recipes that use natural ingredients, then check out the Home Cleaning Products article. You can also sign up to the monthly Parenting Tips newsletter, which has lots of great resources.

Rachel Hawkes

Rachel is a Complimentary Health Specialist, running a Wellbeing Centre in Kent, England. She is the founder of Buddha Buddies, running classes for babies and children and the author of Mindful Parenting – 40 Mindful Moments to Share with Your Children.

Mindful Parenting Handbook

Parenting Tips

If you would like to download lots of FREE parenting tips then head over to the resources page.

New mums – ditch the guilt

New mums – ditch the guilt

Being a new mum – no book can prepare! Overnight your life completely changes. Many women believe when they are pregnant that their life will be exactly the same as before, just with a baby. Oh my, what a rude awakening that can be!

Not only are you suddenly meant to become some sort of ‘baby whisperer’ but cope with your body post-natally too! The trauma of birth becomes a taboo subject and you should now be portraying a glowing earth mother – preferably surrounded by an aura of tranquility!!

Sound familiar?

 

The Reality

The truth is very different for most new mums. Even the most ‘textbook’ of births can be exhausting, painful and very, very long. For those babies that arrive unexpectedly and early there is often early onset guilt – ‘was it something I did’, ‘I should have known something was wrong’. Then we add a baby, hospital trip, breastfeeding and that’s all before we even get home.

Sleep deprivation kicks in quickly, combined with coping with a new baby and the pressure to breastfeed and those early days often lead to a massive overwhelm.

The Guilt

So, you are now at home, pass the blur of those first few days and the accumulation of lack of sleep is being to take its toll. Gone are the days when generations lived in the same village and offered support. Now, partners take off 1-2 weeks, parents pop in to cuddle the baby, friends drop of lovely presents and then, we are on our own.

What happens, the guilt kicks in. We should be able to handle our baby, cook dinner, clean the house and of course, look amazing too! You look at Social Media, everyone else looks they are having the most amazing time with their new baby or juggling the family and a fabulous career. Surely it’s just you?

The Truth

No, it affects all us mums! Honestly, it does. In my classes, where I’ve been teaching baby massage & yoga for 14 years it is something I see all the time. It only takes one Mum to speak up, then they all chip in. The truth is that as a new mum we are all faced with challenges, as individual as our personalities. However, the good news is:

  • You are not alone
  • There are things you can do to help yourself

What can I Do?

  1. Find some support, from friends and family but also further afield. Join some baby classes locally, there are plenty of different activities out there. Connect with people in person, do not just rely on ‘virtual support’, the posts on Facebook or WhatsApp. It is important that you find other mums who are going through the same stage as you, support of like-minded mums is a very powerful thing!
  2. Get out and about. Leave the house, even if it takes you an hour to do it. If you don’t drive, then go for a walk with the buggy. If you can get out to classes, or meet up with friends then do. Getting fresh air is not only good for the body but also for your emotional state. Also, to go out you have to make an effort to get dressed, and sometimes that can seem an unachievable mountain all on its own. You don’t need to be dressed for a night out with full makeup, just not in a onesie!
  3. Try some Mindfulness. I know it is the buzz word at the moment but it can really help create moments where you can feel connected to yourself again. It is also amazing to use with babies! If you are new to the whole Mindfulness thing then I recommend some great apps, cards, and groups below. The thing is to find a way that works for you. You can also check out some useful tips to use with the older kids in the Top Tips Blog too.

Ditch the Guilt

So being a new mum is not the picture of mother earth delight it is often cracked up to be.

If you have days in your pj’s, realise you have been out all day with baby vomit down your back, have cried over trying to get a car seat out of a car. Well, then welcome to Motherhood! You are part of a tribe that acknowledges your guilt – but can tell you to let that stuff go! You are doing an amazing job!

Namaste

x

Rachel

If you want to learn how to introduce Mindfulness into your family then my book Mindful Moments is available on Amazon. If you would like some monthly tips on Parenting then do sign up to the newsletter, I promise not to spam you!

For details on a great Mindfulness App

For more details on Mother Guilt read some of the amazing blogs by The Guilty Mother.

Bonding With Your Baby – A Guide for Parents

Bonding With Your Baby – A Guide for Parents

There is culturally an assumption that all Mothers will naturally bond with their baby, but your baby also is naturally hardwired to seek strong attachment from you too. Babies naturally seek security and we want to provide it. Babies are born ready to love and to be loved. As a parent, it is our goal to love our children but also to instil in them an intrinsic knowledge that they are lovable, which is the foundation of self-esteem. Bonding with your baby is something that most parents aim for, but sometimes it needs some thought.

Parenting – The Hardest Job

But despite a strong intention to bond, often particularly as new parents, we can fret about it, especially if we are prone to anxious thoughts. Being a parent is no doubt the hardest job on the planet, but one that brings such joy and fulfilment. The job doesn’t come with a training manual, but attachment theory and a Positive Parenting approach encourage us to view our children as our instruction manual, as from the moment they are born, they are able to best tell us what they need. Above all, they need to be cherished. There is a lovely quote I found recently written by an American psychologist….” we think of cherished as the emotional equivalent of nourishment. Soul Food”.

Baby Bonding

So what are the foundations of baby bonding? They are simply created through the day to day, moment by moment response to our baby’s needs, which they communicate to us by crying. Traditional parenting advice has included the idea that babies should be left to cry it out, once their physical needs are met, but all the latest research, including brain imaging, concludes that leaving a baby to cry and prolonging its emotional distress contributes negatively to the brain, by the release of the stress hormone cortisol. Responding to your baby crying is not allowing them to manipulate you, you cannot spoil a child with hugs or connection. In fact the more hugs, the more the brain develops and the more they feel cherished.

Research has evidenced that disruption in attachment is created when there is no response to a baby’s cry.

We respond to our baby’s needs by responding across all the senses with our voice and touch, through our smell by holding them, through feeding and talking, by mimicking their sounds. But one of the most powerful and lovely ways with newborns is through touch. As well as having your baby in a sling on your chest, Baby Massage and Baby reflexology have huge benefits to the bonding process for both Mum and baby.

Positive Parenting

Attachment theory is the foundation of the Circle of Security Positive Parenting philosophy that I share through my Parenting Coaching Practice. Secure attachment is built through a relationship that creates confidence in the availability of a specific protective caregiver whilst at the same time, that caregiver is able to support their child’s exploration when it is safe to do so. It is this premise that helps children thrive and is the building block for the growth to independence. Our children are dependent on us so that we can guide them, through a relationship of trust to withstand the challenges they will face as they get older.

Guest Blog by Parenting expert Sarah Weller, based in Tunbridge Wells, Kent, England, Sarah specialises in Positive Parenting. Read more about her in the bio bellow.

There are Amazon Affiliate links in this article.  A small income is made for every purchase, but only products used or endorsed by Rachel Hawkes are linked here.

About Sarah Weller

The Weller Way is a Family Relationship Coaching practice, run by Sarah Weller, a qualified and experienced Parenting Consultant, Coach and Certified NLP Practitioner based in Tunbridge Wells, working throughout Kent and Sussex. Sarah has been married for 30 years to Paul and is a Mother of 4 children, now in their twenties.

Sarah’s Coaching approach is completely holistic, to ensure that the needs of the whole family are met, parents and children. So during the process of helping parents unwrap what is going on underneath the surface of children’s behaviour, Sarah helps parents reflect on their own relationship needs.

Sarah has many years of experience and training for her roles in supporting young people and families in the Mental Health and Homelessness sectors. She is passionate about Mental Wellbeing for the whole family. She is an experienced Licenced Trainer for MIND Fitness and a Mental Health Youth First Aider. As a result, she is also able to offer Life Coaching and Mentoring to troubled teens to boost their confidence and self-esteem. You can contact Sarah or read more from her on any of the links below:

http://thewellerway.co.uk
http://facebook.com/thewellerway
http://instagram.com/the_wellerway
https://www.linkedin.com/SarahWeller

More Ways To Bond Tips

Baby Massage is well known as a great method of increasing the bond between a parent and their newborn. The Online Baby Massage At Home Course is now available – a complete one stop for all you need to confidently massage your baby at home

Massage Your Baby At Home

Rachel Hawkes is the Founder of Buddha Buddies and writes on all things baby and mindful parenting. You can check out her book, packed full of tips for introducing Mindful Moments to your family below.

Mindful Parenting by Rachel Hawkes

Mindful Parenting – 10 Tips to create ‘mindful moments’

Mindful Parenting – 10 Tips to create ‘mindful moments’

This is not yet another thing to ‘fit in’. A training course to complete or even a chore to tick off your very long ‘to do list’. This is going to be a simple blog with easy to use tips on how to just enjoy the time you spend with your children. How to create Mindful Moments with your family.

Just grab a cuppa and spend a few moments having a quick read of how these 10 Tips for Mindful Moments can easily fit into any day.

Mindful Parenting

For many, the idea of Mindfulness sounds daunting! You do not live in that calm, zen-like state that you see on Instagram – so no, it’s not for you, right? Well, how about if it was just about how you could ‘feel’ in any given moment? What if it gave you headspace, a precious few moments that you could then share with your family? Does that sound more realistic to you?

The journey 

Well, that is my journey. I love the practice of sitting down, no distractions and allow my mind space to just be. The reality for most of us mums though is rather different! When I became a parent, I realised very quickly that these moments to myself were going to be very rare. How then could I still have this all-important headspace and be a parent? The answer, as usual, is simple. I just brought my kids into the practice with me. Yes, it looks very different but it not only gave me that all-important mind break but also increased my connection to my children. We create our mindful moments, whenever and wherever we can. 

Sharing the practice

For this, you do not need any special ‘place’ or setting. These little exercises can be done at home, our when you are out and about, some even in the car! This is all about ease – for you and for your family. You do not need to think of specific times that will ‘suit you’, just go with the flow. If they come back from pre-school or school and you have a few minutes before dinner, or you are walking the dog on a Sunday afternoon, maybe as they climb into bed. Just think of these as your shared ‘moments of calm‘.

 

10 Tips for Mindful Moments

  • No pressure – My Number 1 Top Tip. This is meant to be time for you all to enjoy TOGETHER, not something anyone is forced to take part in. If someone is not in the mood for it that day, let it go.
  • Time of day – It really is important that you find a moment that works for you all. Not as you are expecting a phone call or the dinner is coming out of the oven.
  • Anytime, anywhere – Think about this, bring these exercises out with you. If your toddler is suddenly having a meltdown in the car, bring out the 5 things exercise (see below). Often, these can really change the mood with children and once they understand how to use them, they are happy to try them anywhere.
  • Connection – These exercises are all about sharing. Working on the connection between you as a parent and your children. Once they know them well, you can, of course, get them to take part in other situations where you are not present. Between siblings for example, or maybe in the playground. Initially, though, it will need your participation and surely that is also part of the joy!
  • Age and additional needs – If you have children of different ages, then feel free to adapt these techniques. You can use them with all age ranges from toddler to teen, however you will need to adapt your language to suit your family’s needs. This also applies for any of your children with additional needs, for some children with ADHD or those on the autistic spectrum sitting for more than a few minutes might make them feel uncomfortable. So, if you need to, take it outside, or they can sit/ lie down but move any part of their body if needed. Again, you know your children, so as long as they are engaged then how they sit/ lie/ stand/ walk, doesn’t really matter.
  • Getting comfy – There is no need to get hung up on this. Traditionally meditation takes place sitting, feet connected to the ground. Or lying down, back against the floor. These are great, but especially younger children might be better off on their sides or just allowed to change position if they want to. Some of the best times to connect are just when taking a walk!
  • Take a breath – In whatever position you find yourself. Standing, walking or sitting down. Close your eyes (if possible) and putting one hand over your heart just take a breath in and out. Feel the chest rise and fall with each breath in and out. See if you can make each breath last a little longer, exhale a little slower. Do not force the breath, just be aware of it. As you all get more used to the ‘idea’ of the breath and gain awareness you can then start making this into a longer exercise. Try counting the breath 1,2,3 (in) 1,2,3 (out). They can get up to the count of 5 but I would not go higher than that with children under the age of about 8 years old.
  • Mindful Walking – When you next head outside think of somewhere you can go where you can take off your shoes and socks, a park, garden or even the beach. All standing together, have a spot in front of you maybe 10-20 feet away. Lifting one foot up, place it back down in front, slowly walking towards that spot. Be aware of your foot as it lifts, and then feel how each part of your foot connects to the ground when it lowers. Keep the eyes focused on the spot ahead or the feet. No talking (though there is often giggling), when you get to the spot, stop. Turn around and repeat.
  • The 5 Senses – This can be done at home, out and about or in the car. It is a great way of getting everyone to really look at what is around them. Name 5 things you can see, 4 things you can hear, 3 things you can touch, 2 things you can smell and 1 thing you can taste. This works on engaging all of the senses and also enables children to really participate in everything that is around them. (We often used this instead of eye spy on car journeys!)
  • Ending – One of the best things about any mindful moment is then having the time to reflect. This is especially so for children, it takes them longer for their brain to process new experiences so if possible allow a few minutes for them to discuss with you what happened, how they felt, what they liked or just to have a good laugh!

Have Fun

Most of all enjoy this time! Make these Mindful Moments a part of your day and share as many of them as you can! That is one of the joys of parenting that often gets lost when we are too busy with the juggle of every day to just, appreciate a moment. These are just 10 Tips for Mindful Moments that you can use, there are so many more out there! I hope that your journey into Mindful Parenting will create lots of amazing memories for you and your family. Do feel free to get in touch too! You can check out more in my latest book, written for all of us busy parents.

Learn More

Mindful Parenting by Rachel Hawkes

Mindful Parenting by Rachel Hawkes

There are more blogs for you to have a read, including some tips for new mums who need to ditch the guilt! Or you can pick up lots of FREE mindful parenting downloads and printables over on the resources page of the website. If you would like to learn more techniques then you can purchase the book by Rachel Hawkes on Amazon. Full of lots of practical techniques to share with your family.

Do also sign up for the monthly newsletter that is full of little snippets you can use at home. Just enter your details in the subscriber’s box below

Mindful Moments Toolbox

If you would like a great list of some top tools to use with your children then check out my Amazon Toolbox. Yes, as an affiliate I do earn a small amount from all purchases but they are all items that I use not only with my children but also in my classes.

Swaddling your baby for Sleep

Swaddling your baby for Sleep

How swaddling can improve your baby’s sleep

For thousands of years, mothers all over the world have swaddled their babies. 

Swaddling helps your baby to feel safe and secure and is a great way to soothe them. It can even help your baby sleep longer!

Here are three reasons why:

1. Swaddling your baby prevents unnecessary wakes ups due to the moro(or startle) reflex.  This is where your baby feels as if they’re falling and reacts by lifting their arms.  If this happens when your baby is in a light sleep phase this can startle them awake. Swaddling helps your baby feel as if they are being held safely.

2. Swaddling helps to recreate the secure and cosy feeling of the womb. After 9 months of being in Mum’s tummy, the outside world can be a scary and confusing place for a baby.  They need constant comfort and reassurance during this time. While being wrapped up tightly in a blanket might not sound appealing to parents, it can help babies sleep better and cry less.

 3. Blankets and quilts can easily be kicked or thrown off in the night, leaving your baby waking up cold and uncovered.  A swaddled baby should remain safely wrapped up, which hopefully means less wake up calls for you! If however you do have a little escape artist on your hands, be sure to check out our FREE swaddling guide!  It shows you six ways to swaddle – to cover different ages and stages! 

Of course, another huge benefit is if baby sleeps more, then Mum and Dad sleep more!

Swaddling
Swaddling your baby

Finally, remember to always swaddle safely:• Never cover your baby’s head.• Always use a thin fabric and make sure your baby doesn’t overheat. (Tiny Chimpmunk muslins are perfect as bamboo’s natural properties will keep your baby cool.)• Always place your baby on their back when swaddled and use a different swaddling method when they are able to roll over.

Guest blog by Vickie Weinberg, from Tiny Chimpmunk. Check out her amazing website full of gorgeous bamboo baby goodies.

Rachel Hawkes

Rachel is a Complimentary Health Specialist running a Wellbeing Centre and also founder of Buddha Buddies Baby Classes. The resources page is full of FREE DOWNLOADS for many aspects of being a Mindful Parent. You can also read her article on picking up some useful Mindfulness tips for parents. For lots more parenting tips, head over to the new Mindful Parenting Website.

Mindful parenting

To grab a copy of over 40 techniques to introduce mindfulness with your children, just head on over to Amazon. Available as both a ebook and paperback. The perfect Summer read.

Mindful Parenting by Rachel Hawkes
Mindfulness techniques for parents
8 Reasons Why Mums Are Loving Baby Massage?

8 Reasons Why Mums Are Loving Baby Massage?

Why Baby Masage?

Well, most mums or Mums-to-be have now heard of baby massage. Classes are now readily available and there are books, blogs and videos for anyone who wants to pick up some techniques. The question is, why are mum’s now adding in Baby Massage as something to do with their baby? Well, I thought I would put together a brief ‘hit list’ of some of the many reasons why Mum’s love massaging their baby’s.

Massage Your Baby – 8 Reasons Why You Should (You Will Love #5!)

  1. Building a bond – The evidence is pretty clear that the connection that is established while massaging your baby has a long term effect on that all-important bond.
  2. Easy to do – Yes, once you know a few techniques it is simple and actually intuitive – let’s face it nature gets us to stroke our baby’s without even thinking about it.
  3. Anyplace – you do not need to be anywhere in particular – no special room is required. You just create the right atmosphere, using low lighting, perhaps some ambient music and you have the setting all good to go. Meaning you can massage your baby away from home, on holiday or perhaps staying at the in-laws.
  4. Fits into your routine – I know, the dreaded routine, though most parents will agree that having one certainly helps. Massage becomes a part of every day. Whether you choose to massage before bed, or perhaps after the first-morning feed. Whatever works for your routine, Baby Massage can slot in.
  5. Calming for baby and parent – It is a double whammy – both the giver and receiver of Baby Massage feel the calming influence. Blood pressure drops, breathing rate deepens and heart rate slows. Those repetitive strokes are as effectual on you, as your baby.
  6. Getting Dads involved – This can often be a tricky thing for new dads, where do they fit in. Especially so if a mum is breastfeeding. So how about making the Baby Massage time the one that Daddy gets to do? A chance for them to connect and enjoy some real quality bonding time with their baby. Poor Daddy’s are often neglected in being part of a routine. Baby Massage is an easy way for them to have that time – just between them and baby.
  7. Mindful Mummy Moments – Mindfulness appears to be the new buzz word – however, for mum,s it can be the most natural thing in the world. You know the moments, when you have just spent 20 mins staring at your baby’s face – now that is a Mindful Mummy Moment. How about being aware of that when you massage your baby? Make that eye contact, talk to them and feel everything else slip away.
  8. Amazing Benefits – Not only all of the previous 7 but also the physical aspect or creating that contact allows for babies to feel more secure, increasing oxytocin levels (happy hormones) and decreasing any of the stress hormones (adrenaline etc) – leading to a baby that feds better and sleeps better.

Massage Your Baby with Rachel Hawkes

Everyones a Winner

I know, I nearly burst into song when I wrote that headline but in this case, it really is true. The reason mums are learning to massage their baby’s are the amazing upside without any downside! Benefits for baby, mum and dad so if you have not had a go at Baby Massage yet, then now is the time.

You can also read more about which classes you should choose in a previous blog. Or perhaps you want to check out some of the techniques you can use to Massage Your Baby? If so check out our Pinterest board. If you are live in Kent, you can always pop along to one of the Buddha Buddies Baby Yoga & Massage classes and learn everything you will need to confidently Massage Your Baby at home.  You can learn more on the Buddha Buddies website    

Baby Massage At Home

If you are looking to learn the techniques of baby massage in the comfort of your own home, then look no further!

This complete course has all you need, with full video instructions, PDF Handbook and support via a VIP Group. All delivered by Parenting Expert Rachel Hawkes. At only £37, it is the perfect way to learn all you need to get massaging your baby TODAY!

Massage Your Baby At Home
Your complete online baby massage course

Feel free to also connect via Facebook too! I am always popping in there with updates and more videos and tips.