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 Natural Baby Bath Time

 

 

Variations

You can add other lovely things into the mix too, I often cut up some Chamomile Tea Bags (about 8) and put them into the bowl. Again this herb is so gentle on your baby’s skin but is also great for healing and inflammation. If I have any I will sometimes use: dried rose petals (just keep some from your garden) and Calendula (or Marigold), which again is great for soothing skin. 

 

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! If you would like more ideas on replacing your plastics with more natural solutions, check out the blog over on our Mindful Parenting site. It has ideas on easy ‘swops’, where you can replace some of those single use plastic products that we all have in the home with a more sustainable option. 

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.

Make Your Own 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 Wellbeing 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

 

 

 

Baby Action Songs

Baby Action Songs

Baby Yoga

As a Baby Yoga Instructor, I love the simplicity of baby action songs. A simple nursery song combined with some movements never ceases to bring a smile to a baby’s face.

However, did you know there is a lot more going on in that baby brain while they are smiling and moving?[

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.]

Your Baby’s Brain

You know that your baby has the most awesome brain, every parent is always astounded at just how quickly their baby develops and gains new skills. Let’s face it, even at birth the amount of brainpower that your baby shows is pretty mind-blowing! (did you know that your baby knows your smell as soon as they are born – amazing and true!)

During the first year, the physical size of your baby’s brain doubles! That just goes to prove that they really do get smarter every day. Also, the area of the brain that shows the most development in the first year is the cerebellum, which is responsible for movement. You can read more about this in the great article by LiveScience.

Developmental Skills

So, how can we harness this rapid growth and boost your baby’s brainpower?

Doing – Yes, really! The main method of really working that grey matter and the method that works best for your baby is the act of doing, watching and engaging in something.

Action Songs

By working on song and movement you are utilising both the left and right sides of your baby’s brain. This really is a double winner for boosting that early development. Different areas of the brain are being activated at the same time! I cover various songs in baby yoga classes but I have also started to put them together in a FREE VIDEO SERIES over on youtube. You just need to grab your baby and you are all good to go! I have put one below so you can see me in action.

Singing, love it or hate it? Luckily enough, your baby is tuned to love the sound of their caregiver’s voice, so even if you think you are sounding horribly out of tune, do not worry your baby will still love it! It is another way to get other family members involved. There really is nothing cuter than a sibling signing to his or her little baby brother or sister! If you have Grandparents who are not nearby, you can always set up that Zoom call and get them singing too.

Movement with Song

Adding in movement during the song really is the next step in working that brain. Your baby will always love listening to songs you sing, but when you start adding in some movement with them, it really takes make the whole thing far more exciting and interactive, which all helps with that brainpower. There are various songs that are available, and you one of the joys is always making up your own too. I have listed some of my favourites below, but feel free to add in any that you know. The lovely thing is that lots of traditional ‘nursery’ songs work so well for this, and many of them are regional. It is a great way of adding in some real diversity and also family history to the next generation.

Other Baby Developmental Techniques

Your baby learns by watching and doing, so what other baby activities can you add into your day?

Baby Massage – this still remains one of the best ways to add-in soo many benefits to your baby. From bonding to singing, there really is a whole lot of techniques there to build that baby brain. You can start baby massage today with the online baby massage course. It has all you need to learn baby massage at home, all delivered in video modules that allow you to learn at your own pace. It also has full support via the private Facebook Group too.

Learn How To Massage Your Baby

Books – reading with your baby, especially if you are choosing interactive books is another brain-boosting baby activity that you can easily add in every day. I have put in a couple of my favourites below.

 



 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Keep It Going – From Birth To Age 3

These are all suitable for the first year, but remember that your baby’s brain will continue to grow and the first 3 years at the biggest times of brain growth during our whole lifetime. There is more to read on how your baby’s brain is structured and activities for working both sides of the brain too. So keep going with those activities! You can check out more baby and toddler activities here and also how to add in some mindfulness activities for the toddler and beyond years

For more parenting tips then please do sign up to the newsletter, I only send out relevant tips and ideas and you can, of course, unsubscribe at any time.

You can also see more on the Pinterest Boards too, don’t forget to follow!

 

Creating more ‘Me Time’ – A Cheats Guide for Mums

Creating more ‘Me Time’ – A Cheats Guide for Mums

Self Care For Mums

Being a Mum is hard!

No matter what you read or who you listen to, one thing is certain – nothing can properly prepare you for Motherhood. You know you will be suffering from lack of sleep, learning about this new baby and dealing with your body post-birth. The difficulty is, doing it all. So, how can you find some “me time”?

Mindset

Fill your own cup – This is a variation on a quote that is often seen regarding motherhood. It is the KEY to ensuring that you are able to still give to others. You need to ensure that your ‘cup’ is not always empty. How can you give to others if you have nothing left to give? This is where that all-important self-care routine comes in.

The thing is to acknowledge that in order to still be you and be a mother and partner you need to know that you will need to put some time into your own health. You can read how you can ‘ditch the guilt’ in a previous article. It is not an easy process, every time we even think of doing something for ourselves, the guilt can kick in.

Realising that you NEED to put some energy into your own wellbeing will enable you to be more present in your other roles: Mummy, Partner, Daughter, Employee or Business Owner. So, with that now in the front of your mind, how can you start to find the time and energy for yourself?

Things to try

  1. Take a moment before you get out of bed in the morning to think of something you are grateful for. It does not always need to be the big stuff, sometimes it can be really small such as “the baby only woke once last night” or “it looks like it will be a sunny day”. This Gratitude Practice can often have a profound impact on how we start a new day.
  2. Decide to do one small thing today just for you. Again, it might be to drink a cup of tea when it is still hot! Put on makeup before you go out. Often, just a few minutes needed to complete these small tasks allows us to take a minute – just for us.
  3. Mindful Moments, so when you decide on your one small thing, be present in that moment. Do not make up the next feed while drinking your tea, or talk to your baby when you are putting on your make up. Just enjoy the simple pleasure of completing this one thing, just for you. These Mindful Moments allow our brain some time to rest and re-set and affect not just the brain waves but also our parasympathetic nervous system (the one that controls our involuntary nervous system), so our blood pressure lowers, breath deepens and heart rate slows.
  4. Pick something to read. (Maybe not War & Peace!) Just for the pleasure, whether it is a trashy mag or a book you have wanted to read for ages. Nothing too taxing or large, or you will be defeated and see it as something else you have not finished. This is a great ‘guilty pleasure’ and can definitely take priority over putting the washing on.
  5. Connect with friends and family. It is easy to stay in contact with people over social media but it is really important for your wellbeing to actually meet up with people. Getting out and about is vital for our emotional and social wellbeing. Being a Mum can be a lonely business, being able to chat with other women can really help to reassure us that we are all in the same boat!
  6. Get planning on something bigger, an evening out or meeting friends for coffee or lunch. Book a Massage (great for the body and soul), have your hair cut or maybe even a night away! Just the act of planning allows us to think of something that is not revolving around other people’s needs.
  7. Nap when you can, when your baby sleeps, try and grab some time. The accumulation of sleep deprivation can have a massive ongoing effect on your mental and physical health. The evidence is now clear that a ‘power nap’ can help with brain function (even Google are now promoting power naps for employees!).
  8. Get a cleaner! I know really? Yes, ditch the guilt on the cost. The small weekly outlay will be worth it. You will be at home, baby taking a nap and think “Oh I really should just clean the bathroom, or dust or….” Let’s face it, the list is endless! Knowing that the basics are covered will have a direct impact on your mental health! We are back to the mindset again, remember, your health needs to be a priority too!

Be Kind

Motherhood is the most wonderful thing to enter our lives, embrace it but also believe that you are worthwhile too. Be KIND to yourself. We are often our own worst critics and listening to that voice in our head over the choices we make can be life-affecting. You are doing a marvellous job (yes it is indeed a job – just without pay!). I hope you feel that you can now create your own Me Time with these simple tips.

So, be kind to yourself without guilt. Enjoy your journey with your family and welcome to the ultimate TRIBE – Motherhood!

If you live in Kent, England and are looking to book a massage for some real self-care love then, check out Harmonia Therapies

For some great Mummy Cards for self-care then have a look at the Nourish to Thrive Cards

For great tips on why Massaging Your Baby can benefit you both then read our previous article.

My new book, providing you with some Mindful Parenting tools is now available to purchase on Amazon.

This has over 40 different ways for you to add in some Mindfulness with your family, and the guided visualisations and breathwork are perfect for adding in even more self-care moments too.

Mindful Parenting Handbook

 

If you would like to receive our Monthly Newsletter packed full of useful tips for you and your growing baby then simply sign up below.

Namaste

x

Rachel

Head on over to the Pinterest board and see more tips from birth and beyond.

 

 

 

 

Mindful Parenting Handbook

Mindful Parenting Handbook

How To Find Time As A Parent?

As a parent, it can be difficult to not only read all the ‘best advice’ but also find the time to put all those great new strategies in place. There is so much out there on how to improve ourselves as parents and bring up our children to be resilient, kind, caring and happy. The tricky thing I found, how to pack it all into an already busy life.

Speaking to lots of other parents, especially in my baby classes, everyone seems to be feeling it. How do we learn all this ‘new stuff’ on how to be the best parent we can and then find the time to ensure that we are able to put it into practice? I know that I love to read and develop, not only as a person but as my role as a parent. I end up ‘cherry-picking’ from various books, blogs, and general tips. Sometimes successfully, others, well – not so much!

[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.]

Parents Handbook

When I was looking at the idea of a Mindful Parenting book, this thought kept popping up. So, how could I make a book that actually had stuff you would want to put into practice an easy read! I had so many ideas and thoughts of how it ‘should’ look but in the end, I choose to follow my own intuition. Keep it simple. Write something that would be easy to not only pick up and read but also put into place.

The book is not divided into ages of children. So many families have a wide age range and honestly, many of the exercises are suitable for a wide age range. As a parent, you know what type of activity your child likes, regardless of age. My girls (aged 12), still love chasing bubbles around the garden!  So, let’s not confine this to age ‘appropriate’ activities. Instead, I have split it into types of activities. You can choose a guided meditation, with a full script to read out to your child. Or maybe they prefer something more tactile? How about using a Mindful Stone?

Mindfulness For All The Family

This is a book that parents and their children can read together. The techniques are also easy to bring into daily life. I wanted to show that Mindfulness can be accessible to all. If you have never ‘practised’ mindfulness before, you would have somewhere to start. If you have a daily mindful practice in place, then great, there are plenty of tips that you can add into your kid’s life that would enable them to join you on the mindful journey.

Mindful Parenting by Rachel Hawkes

Some Mindfulness Tips To Try

I have listed a few simple ideas that you can start to use straight away. Give them a try with your children and if you want to learn any more you can check out the book on Amazon – Mindful Parenting, 40 Mindful Moments to share with your children. There are also some great FREE resources on the website, with downloads and printables. This is a growing library of resources if you would like to receive monthly tips on easy to use Mindful ideas then sign up to the Mindful Parenting Newsletter.

  • Dinner Time – A really great place to start bringing in some mindful awareness. Ban all the gadgets from the dinner table. This can often just open up the opportunity to share some conversation, which can be a good place to begin.
  • Hold Hands – Simply hold hands with your child or children and closing your eyes. You can sit in a circle if you can, or just somewhere you are all comfy. No one talks, you can either just all take a moment together or if you are able you can focus on the breath. You might want to say “breathe in, and out” in time to your breath. The guided part of this, with your voice, can be a great focal point for you all.
  • Count the breath – Sitting or lying, count 1 and inhale, 2, exhale, 3 inhale, 4 exhale, until you get to 10. Breath normally for a couple of minutes and then repeat.
  • A Mindful Walk – Get out and about with the family and make a fun game of being aware of things you can see, hear or even smell! A fab one for a day out in the park or beach. This can really be used anywhere, for those times when you want to bring your child’s attention to what is around them.

Be Mindfully Aware

For any parent, just be aware that we need to not only spend time with our kids but connect to them when we do! The juggle of our daily busy lives can often be overwhelming, these Mindful Moments are as important for us and them.

Enjoy taking time, even if it is in small pockets. They all come together to help us build fabulous connections to ourselves and our children.

If you would like Mindful Parenting Tips every month then sign up to the newsletter, you can unsubscribe at any time. If you want to read the rather funny reality of my ‘official’ book launch, then do check out the Book Launch Blog

Come On Over To The Facebook Group

If you would like to be part of an active Mindful Parenting community, then head over to the Facebook Group. There are lots of parents sharing ideas and I also pop in every week with more videos and tips on how you can easily add in more Mindful Moments in your parenting journey.

x

Rachel

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
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