THE ULTIMATE GUIDE TO BREASTFEEDING

My breastfeeding journey continues up to this day. I never thought I would keep it for so long. I always had in my mind that nursing for a year is more than enough. Actually, when I first started, my initial goal was to be able to breastfeed for 3 months, then for 6 months, for 9 months and for a year maximum. It did not matter what I want because my baby had a different opinion and she wouldn’t let the boob that easily. She nurses when she is teething, sad, tired or wants to sleep. People around us are usually surprised when they hear that I am still breastfeeding her, and honestly I would be too before I had Amelia, but now I know better. I just follow my child and what it feels right to me. Not even once all these months I have felt like I should stop nursing her.

However, it hasn’t been that easy, especially after she turned one. Maybe I was expecting too much, like her to sleep better or breastfeed less often and when I realised none of these were happening I had a difficult time with breastfeeding agitation. That lasted until she became 14 months old and at this point I made up my mind to continue nursing her until she is two. In general, breastfeeding requires a lot of effort from the mother and support from the people around her. It is not the simplest thing in the world to have a baby that completely depends on you for her feeding and oftentimes you may be insecure about your supply or you may be exhausted. That is why  finding opportunities for sleep and rest whenever possible will make you a happier and more patient mom.

I always knew I wanted to breastfeed my baby, it sound so natural to me mostly because growing up I listened to my parents talking about it and how good it is for a baby. The main reasons I managed to do it were because firstly, I took a class for expecting mothers, which gave me all the information I needed and secondly, I was very calm. I said to myself that even if I wouldn’t be able to breastfeed, my baby would still survive and be healthy by drinking formula. It would be great if  we make it, but it is ok if we wouldn’t. All it mattered was the baby to be fed. I was so lucky, she latched immediately after she was born and I cannot express all the happiness and love I felt those moments.

We should not forget that every case is different and not all moms can or want to breastfeed and it is totally ok. Chosing to breastfeed doesn’t make any of us a better mother. Below I will show you about what I learned from the class I took and talk about my experience. I am not a breastfeeding counselor and these are just general rules for full – term born babies. For any problem with you or the baby you should talk to your doctor.

Things that can affect your milk supply.

  1. Breastfeeding on demand. Nursing frequency and duration have a huge impact on your milk supply. A newborn may stay on the breast for 18 hours a day and that is perfectly normal. The more a baby is nursing the more milk you will have.  Anything from 8 to 12 or more times a day is totally expected. Breast milk digests faster than formula and as a result your baby is hungry more often. Infants go through growth spurts when they are getting ready for their next milestone and they may breastfeed for many and many hours and mothers might think that they are not getting enough milk, but it is all very normal. You just offer in demand, everything is fine as long as the baby is gaining enough weight and has at least 4-6+ wet diapers a day, according to www.kellymom.com .
  2. Hydration. Water, water, water. Drink as much water as possible. Dehydration is one of the main reasons that can drop your milk supply. Your body needs liquids to produce liquids.
  3. Nutrition. Mother’s milk is the best milk for a baby, even if she eats junk food. The baby will absorb all the nutrients he needs from mother’s body but eating well and healthy in this demanding period is crucial. A balanced diet will fuel you with all the needed energy. Keep in mind, though, that having lots of healthy snacks all the time, will keep you away from indulging to cakes and all the nutrient-poor foods. I don’t even know how I got to my pre – baby weight with all that food I am eating. I am more hungry than when I was pregnant and I need to eat all the time. Seriously, I have to eat every hour something. Some days I consume so much food that I am sure I must have gained at least 2 kg. The good think is that with breastfeeding you lose many calories too. Balance is the key.

Breastfeed as soon as possible from birth. Newborns in their first two hours of life are awaken and are very alert about the world around them. They are looking for their mothers, so ideally they should be placed on their mom’s chest for some skin to skin and then they start to crawl and breastfeed on their own. Newborns have this ability for a couple of hours after delivery and then they usually will sleep for most of the time. The same goes for the mothers who had a c-section. I had a c-section myself and I nursed her immediately after birth.

Breastfeeding does not hurt. You may already have heard this somewhere, but it is true. If you feel pain then you are doing something wrong and baby doesn’t latches as she is supposed to do, so don’t keep suffering, ask a counselor to show you the right way. Even if the first weeks are hard, pain will go away, but the baby still will not be positioned well and most likely not feeding well. It is very important to get help.  Also, in the first months a breastfeeding pillow will save your life. The baby will nurse for so long that your back and arms may hurt, so buy one and you will see a great difference.

Always offer both breasts. During breastfeeding first comes the foremilk, which is lower in calories and then hindmilk comes as the feeding progresses. The baby should be placed in one breast and stay there for as much as he wants. After he stops feeding offer one more time the same breast, if he is done with it offer the other one and let him stay there until he lets it himself. Always should be offered both breasts at every feeding.

Breast milk provides ideal nutrition to infants. It is sterilized, has the perfect temperature and easy to offer at any time.

The World Health Organization says that infants should be exclusively breastfed for the first six months of age and complementary foods should be introduced while continued to be breastfed for up to two years or beyond.

I often hear people saying that a toddler has nothing good to take from breast milk and they only do it for soothing. I don’t see anything wrong with the soothing reason, toddlers are still babies and they need any kind of tenderness they can get from their mothers. However, the benefits of extended breastfeeding are countless. It provides energy to the kid, helps brain development, boosts immune system and many other. It is up to the mother and the child for how long they decide to keep on it.

Taking medications when needed is another issue that worries young mothers. You can take medications while nursing, as long as they are compatible with breastfeeding. Antibiotics, homeopathic medication, paracetamol and lots of others are not forbidden during this period. You can simply check compatibility of any medicine in the http://www.e-lactancia.org website. You just enter the active ingredient of the medicine, it is usually on the medicine’s box, and it will show if it is very low risk, which means that there is no risk for the baby or it will show high risk, that means it is not safe to take.

Lastly, the thing the nurses told us is that if you want to breastfeed you will.  It is the best for your child and yourself too. If challenges come, seek for advice. It is the most natural thing, but you need to know how to do it and good information is extremely useful. The bond with your baby and the  moments you get to live with him are very special and worth every second.

 

 

 

Anna


EASY EGG NESTS BREAKFAST

LRM_EXPORT_579225728714660_20181127_191050887I’ve been doing these egg nests for years now. I was in search for something healthy we could take away for a road trip. I made 8 of them and we ate them all at the first hour of the trip. They are delicious and very easy to prepare, all you need are eggs and bread toast and you can fill them with anything you like. You can skip the ingredients below and customize to your taste. Depending on what is in the fridge I add chicken, any kind of vegetables I have, bacon, feta cheese, mozzarella or cheddar. It is a full, balanced meal option since it contains protein, carbohydrate and vegetables. Next time you want to impress someone with a great breakfast or a quick snack, do this recipe and they will think it took you so long to make them when you only need 15 minutes. It is perfect for kids too because they can take it with their little hands.

For 4 egg nests:

5 slices of toast

5 eggs

2 tomatoes

200 gr mashrooms

80 gr grated cheese

Salt, Pepper

Heat oven to 356 degrees. Cut the bread slices in the maffin cup’s height, then put them around the cup. Add in the cheese, the vegetables and on top of them the egg.

LRM_EXPORT_579451845857459_20181127_191437004

LRM_EXPORT_579429167690899_20181127_191414326LRM_EXPORT_579335426122696_20181127_19124058420181128_150342

 

LRM_EXPORT_579038436756370_20181127_190743595

 

Probably, you will have to push the ingredients a little bit so that the egg doesn’t come out of the cup. Add a pinch of salt and pepper and put them in the oven until the eggs are well cooked, for about 12 minutes. Enjoy!

TIPS FOR FLYING WITH A BABY

LRM_EXPORT_473175804322879_20181124_201325457

Holiday season is almost here and people from all around the world will travel for vacations or to their relatives to spend the most beautiful time of the year. However, one thing that worries families with little kids is how to survive the flight and if is even worth it at all. Honestly, sometimes it is not easy, but nothing is impossible. The younger the child the easier the flight, because a four month old baby will stay still and stare the new enviroment, but a one year old baby will want to touch everything and move all around. I have some tips I implement to my family that have helped us and hope you find them useful too.

  1. Patience. This is the number one tool you will need. It might be challenging, you probably will have to walk the isle more times than you expected and be vigilant the whole time. These are what you really should be questioning yourself if you can undertake. Having in mind the worst case scenario will mentally prepare you for the challenge. However, things usually are not that serious. Kids are kids and you already know how to handle them. Personally I never had a bad flight with my daughter. There were times she wanted to play or explore but this is what I do with her everyday.
  2. Toys and books. I don’t recommend bringing too many toys and books with you. Babies don’t play for too long with anything. One or two toys and new books are more than enough. When they have less options they tend to be more interested and play for longer. Also, a little bit of screen time won’t hurt when things get tough. So, having a few videos with music or movies or whatever your child prefers will save you when you are out of energy.
  3. Snacks. Kids under the age of one shouldn’t eat any sugar, but that is not the case for toddlers. I keep cookies and sweet snacks for such occassions and will keep her calm for a few minutes. A piece of chocolate does wonders with Amelia and is something I know she never refuses. Cheerios, dried fruits, baby cookies or whatever your child loves are options for the under one babies. It is easier to handle such a little baby because they are curious about anything you give to them.
  4. Don’t bring everything at once. Let the child explore all the fascinating things in the plane. Opening and closing the window, pushing the buttons, playing with the table, reading the safety instructions are all interesting activities that will keep them entertained for quite a time.  After you have tried these then snacks and toys may follow.
  5. Let them play with the passengers.  If they are friendly of course. When we traveled to Crete Amelia was full of energy and i was feeling so tired. Luckily, next to us was seating a girl who loved her and she played with her the entire time. She was a new person to my doughter, that means an interesting one. She even held her for a while and I can’t thank her enough for that. I hope you understand that I don’t just give my child to strangers, it was a one time thing. What I want to say is that most of the passengers love babies and are happy to play peekaboo, smile or wave to them and you should take advantage of it.
  6. Buy a separate seat for the kid. For a long flight and if you can afford it I would definitely suggest buying one more seat for your baby to sleep in. On our night flight from Malaga to Athens I held her all the way from 1 am till the morning. Both me and her were exhausted the next day. Had I known better I would have taken another seat.
  7. Fly smart. Plan your trip during nap time. That way you have more chances the baby to sleep, also don’t forget to ask the flight attendant a pillow, it makes everything more comfortable, plus in case of turbulences it is an extra safety for baby’s head when sleeping.
  8. Hand sanitizer or sanitizing wipes. Hygiene is important, specially with very young babies and washing hands is not an easy task with when in an airplane. Moreover, you might want to disinfect everything that may end up in kid’s mouth.

Do you have any other smart tip? Let me know in the comments below.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Anna

PRAGUE WITH A BABY

I feel like Prague is on the bucket list of most travelers. It was on my list too, so this October we visited it. We stayed for three days and as always Amelia came with us. The hotel was in the city center and very close to the Old Town Square. Considering that this city is located in the Northern region of Europe and already being in the fall season I expected to be cold, but to my surprise it was still summer and we didn’t have the chance to wear all the outwear we had taken for the trip, however it was the perfect weather for kids. Sightseeing was what we mostly did, because you can’t get enough watching this place. The Central Square was so atmospheric with large buildings of various architectural styles, full of people waiting for the oldest astronomical clock in the world to strike the hour and the Twelve Apostles to set in motion. In the Old Town there are many worth visiting museums such as Madame Tussauds, Fraz Kafka Museum, Choco – Story Chocolate Museum and what we couldn’t visit because of the baby, Torture Museum. They are pretty small museums, yet a nice choice to spend a few hours, since they are all close to each other. Getting inside a Marionette shop is a must. All kinds of characters from witches, princesses, kings and animals will amaze kids and adults.

LRM_EXPORT_295672755176072_20181120_004723614

I never drink any beverage in general, but I enjoyed an alcohol – free beer. There are so many pubs and restaurants all around the city offering delicious and filling Chezch dishes and all kinds of beers, so forget about your diet when you come here. Seriously it is impossible not to try their comfort food such as Gulas and the Moravsky vrabec. Dimitri couldn’t believe his eyes when I ordered in the middle of the day the Pork Knuckle, because I don’t like eating meat, let alone to pick it myself in a restaurant, but it looked so tempting in the menu. And, how could someone possibly resist to Trdelnik, a rolled dough in snake shape with sugar and cinnamon topping, filled with pastry cream or ice cream? Definitely not us.

LRM_EXPORT_294929592132258_20181120_003500451

Walking along the river side we arrived to the stunning Charles Bridge, which is very large and the view from the Old Town and Mala Strana is unbelievable. It is always very crowed and makes it difficult to walk it through, especially with kids, that is why the best hour to visit it is in the early morning. For some good luck touch the plaque of St. John of Nepomuk Statue, but only with your left hand. After crossing the bridge towards Mala Strana, there is a small riverside beach where children can have fun feeding the ducks and then playing in the Vojanovy Sady park, while the adults may relax and enjoy a cup of coffee or a Trdelnik (!) in the beautiful nature away from the crowds.LRM_EXPORT_295126696463347_20181120_003817555LRM_EXPORT_295452653665268_20181120_004343512

At this point you probably have already noticed the Petrin Hill Tower which looks like a smaller Eiffel Tower. Petrin Hill is the perfect place to see the view of the colorful Prague and especially for the children to play with the ponies and the maze. You can take the 30 minutes walk to get up there, but if you have little babies it is preferable to take the lift for an extra fee. On our way down we stopped at a cute café – restaurant, where to all of the Outlander’s fans I swear the waiter was the lost twin brother of Frank. I hope he didn’t think I am some weirdo, because of how long I was staring at him, but I’ve never in my life seen such a similarity between two people. Heading down to one of the most beautiful streets in Prague, Nerudova Street is a great experience, with all the cute suvenir and gift shops. Don’t miss the Gingerbread museum, which looks like Hansel and Gretel’s house, to take photos and buy some cookies.LRM_EXPORT_294984993807526_20181120_003555853LRM_EXPORT_295246404584723_20181120_004017263

Public transport system in Prague is easy and efficient. Going around city with metro, buses and tram is cheap and is the best way to take long distances but, every street and spot is very charming so don’t be afraid to walk as much as you can and get lost into. To sum up, Prague is for sure one of the most beautiful cities in Europe and a great destination for families. All restaurants and cafes have baby chairs and kid meals are available almost everywhere. Prepare to take many photos as this city has come out of a fairytale.  LRM_EXPORT_295573779525220_20181120_004544638

 

 

Anna

VANILLA CUPCAKES

20181118_152757

Amelia had a cold so we stayed home all weekend long. The weather was cloudy and rainy, really puts you into the Christmas mood. We started to decorate the house for the holidays, reading books and watching ‘Peppa Pig’. It has been very sweet and cozy. Sunday morning found us making cupcakes. I gathered all the ingredients and we started playing  with the colors and the buttercream. The kitchen was a real mess but it was very funny and totally worth it. We sang the happy birthday song to Amelia, even though it is not her birthday but she loves to blow the candles from any cake or cupcake and then we had them for breakfast. They didn’t came out looking perfect but they were really tasty. This is a cake recipe so it serves about 20 cupcakes.

LRM_EXPORT_244311558979796_20181118_130241981

Vanilla Cupcakes

For the cupcakes:

250g softened butter

2 1/2 cup sugar. I put half regular sugar and half coconut sugar.

4 eggs

1 1/2 any milk

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

500g self – raising flour

For the buttercream:

100g soften butter

230g icing sugar

20ml milk

food coloring

 

Preheat oven to 180C and fill the cupcake tray with paper cases. With the electronic hand whisk beat the butter and the sugar. Then add in the eggs one by one and beat for 3 minutes. Lastly, add in the flour and the vanilla extract and mix well. Fill each cupcake and bake for 15 minutes until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean.

For the buttercream, beat the butter and the milk together until smooth and add in the sugar and the food coloring. You might want to separate the mixture in different bowls to color each of them differently. Take out of the oven the cupcakes and decorate with the buttercream.

 

 

MONTHLY BABY PHOTOSHOOT

A few days ago Amelia turned 18 months old, a year and a half she came into our lives. It is crazy how much in love I am with this lady. I could seriously eat her but instead we spend most of our days hugging each other. I took the monthly photoshoot idea from the amazing Mimi Ikonn when I was pregnant and decided to do it too with my daughter. I can’t wait to show them to her when she grows up, but it is also a beautiful memory to keep from my baby’s first year.

LRM_EXPORT_4274609482942_20181112_155610537

 

 

LRM_EXPORT_4788046565651_20181112_160443974

 

20181112_155822

 

20181113_160847

 

LRM_EXPORT_3101907958819_20181112_153637836

 

LRM_EXPORT_5614283517060_20181112_161832211

 

20181112_160121

 

20181113_161459

 

LRM_EXPORT_3599048596425_20181112_154454976

 

LRM_EXPORT_3490210501503_20181112_154306138

 

LRM_EXPORT_3344127971299_20181112_154040056

 

LRM_EXPORT_63514857110943_20181113_160705986

 

Did you liked this idea? Have you done anything similar too?

Anna

 

 

THE MOST INCREDIBLE PLACES IN GREECE

 

Every time my friends ask me which is the most beautiful place I’ve seen, I say Greece. It is the absolute true, considering that it is full of tourists at any season. Greece is unique, eccentric and attractive, just as its zodiac sign, Aquarius.

I had the chance to travel in many places in Greece, but would take a lifetime to see all the  islands and villages. Below I will present you some summer and winter destinations that really impressed me.

Santorini. First time I went in Santorini in January 2015, for work with my husband, so logically not the perfect period to be on a Greek island. When we arrived in our hotel, in Oia village I was fascinated with all that beauty around me. We all have heard about Santorini’s view and sunset, but nothing can prepare you for what you come across. The volcano right next to you and the sea just under the cliff is unreal. I haven’t been everywhere, but I hardly think I’ll ever see something similar to Oia.  If possible you should stay in Caldera and enjoy the most romantic sunset in the world. Every corner of the island is beautiful and you should visit the cute villages and beautiful beaches. Summertime is very crowed with tourists, that is why spring and the beginning of fall is a good period to visit it.

LRM_EXPORT_30211151349352_20181108_093452721LRM_EXPORT_30266363897582_20181108_093547934

Mykonos. One of the most famous places in the world could not be out of my list. I have to be honest with you, I didn’t expect much from Mykonos. Even though I love parties, the idea of drunk and half naked people around kept me away from the island all these years. End of this August found me in Mykonos I found out what makes it so special. First of all, the crystal blue beaches. You need at least a week to see every single one. Secondly is the aesthetic the island has to offer. Everywhere you go in Mykonos the design and décor of the hotels, cafes and restaurants is just stunning. So fresh, chic and modern with wood and white colors, it will certainly inspire you. Lastly, to my surprise partying was not that crazy. You need to go to specific areas to experience the party and clubbing. Mykonos offers a variety for any taste, beaches with loud music and people dancing, quite and private beaches, unique restaurants with amazing views, great cuisine, etc. I can keep writing of all the things I loved about this place, but what really fascinates the visitor is that the place completely feeds your spirit. Somehow I left happier and more optimistic. Maybe it was the sun or maybe the happy people, but I definitely look forward to going back again next year.

LRM_EXPORT_46225101923886_20181108_160206772LRM_EXPORT_1112816005064559_20180905_005856222

Kefalonia. Is the largest of the Ionian islands and the perfect place for couples and families. We went there before we have a baby and I cherish those moments deep in my heart. The best way to explore the island is by renting a car and you need at least five days to see most of it. It truly is a paradise on earth. The stunning green nature and the blue beaches will make you want to stay there all summer long. The distances are quite long but the views make them worth it. The place is very photogenic, you will  make a stop and take photos every five minutes. For families with little children, I would suggest the red beach. Myrtos, which every year figures in the best beaches in the world, is definitely worth visiting it. If you are brave enough, go for paragliding. It is one of the most exciting extreme sports one can do. Don’t miss the picturesque village of Assos. Before heading to the beach make a stop at the Melissani Cave, to see the rays of sun shinning through the blue water. It is so romantic and beautiful!

LRM_EXPORT_119436922277110_20181111_001835626LRM_EXPORT_119572043985975_20181111_002050748LRM_EXPORT_46079518121567_20181108_155941188

Alonissos. This is my personal favorite island. Not so well-known as Mykonos and Santorini but equally beautiful and special. It is part of the Sporades and probably the most charming one. There is no better place for quite and relaxing vacations. Having a car is necessary here too. What Alonissos lacks in sightseeing and nightlife, makes up in amazing little beaches, food and relaxation. Agios Dimitrios is no doubt the best beach. We stayed at Votsi village, which is built on a hill and has a very cute little port. Chora offers a sea view at any corner. If you go to Chayati café you will enjoy the best desserts and try the famous chocolate waffles. There are lots of pizza restaurants but traditional food is what everyone should go for. LRM_EXPORT_46144125401597_20181108_160045795LRM_EXPORT_119152926197544_20181111_001351630

Crete. It is the largest island in Greece and there is so much to see and to do there. Three years ago, in summer we went in Crete and we were driving all day long crazy distances, so that we could see as much as possible. I can say we came home more tired than we left, but totally worth it. This is what you do when you don’t have kids. We stayed in Elounda, a little fishing village in Agios Nicholaos. It is such a lovely place that we went back this year with the baby. Only one hour away from the Heraklion airport, it is the appropriate place for those looking for an all inclusive resort, especially for families with young kids. Definitely take a boat tour to the island of Spinaloga that was used as a leper colony in the 20th century. It is so atmospheric and touching if you think of what these people had to go through. Anywhere you decide to stay in Crete you will have unforgettable vacations.Balos and Elafonisi are pink sandy beaches that you can’t find elsewhere in the world so keep them on your mind. Great food, nightlife, huge sandy beaches, watersports, beautiful scenery, friendly people and amazing hospitality is what makes this island so popular.LRM_EXPORT_119715041299911_20181111_002313745

Metsovo. This is a winter destination in the mountains of Pindos, in Ioannina. Even though Greece is mostly known for the islands, it is a perfect destination for winter too. Metsovo is a breathtaking town with small houses and red roofs that has so much to offer to the visitor. Coziness is what can describe the feeling this places gives you. Hot chocolate in front of the fireplace and snow outside is what dreams are made of. If you are looking for a five star accommodation there is a great hotel a little higher on the mountain with spa, huge traditional breakfast and playground for kids. You can do shopping in the little stores and buy homemade pasta and goodies for home. Nice coffee shops and tavernas are everywhere. You can go to Metsovo by the Ioannina’s airport and then hire a car or taxi service to take you up there.  It is truly one of the most beautiful places I’ve seen, so I totally suggest you put it on your list.LRM_EXPORT_129306923955281_20181111_100355651

Hilly streets of Metsovo, Greece

Monemvasia. Last fall we went in Monemvasia with our six month old Amelia. I had heard about it and we decided to go for a weekend. It is located in the east coast of the Peloponnese and it is actually built on an island. Little old houses and cafes, historic churches and narrow streets on a hill just above the sea will truly leave you speechless. Fall and winter make the perfect cozy atmosphere, but coming in spring and summer is great too. You should stay in the old town for the real experience, but if you are coming with a baby, avoid to take a stroller with you because of the many stairs and the paved streets. The area around is beautiful too with nice people and restaurants on the beach so a trip on the near towns is recommended. LRM_EXPORT_71888259943566_20181109_092920324

Aerial view of the ancient hillside town of Monemvasia located i

 

Anna

HOW I HANDLE MY TODDLER

LRM_EXPORT_566243094101531_20181102_141759192

Amelia is 18 months old, so already a toddler and I am more scared than ever of what is going to come. Since now she hasn’t been the wildest kid, but mood swings and tantrums have made their presence in the past months. I am with her 24/7, all my days are dedicated to raising this child and it truly is the most rewarding job in the world, I wouldn’t change it for anything. The moments I get to live with her, watching her character changing from a baby to a toddler make me feel so privileged. I know that most mums have to return to their jobs a few months after giving birth, I am so grateful I had the chance to experience this whole new world.

However, not all days are good and the hard part is that I cannot take a break if I feel I need to. Dimitri leaves for work early in the morning and gets back after 8 pm, so there is nobody to keep her even for half an hour. She has been so attached to me, playing, eating, sleeping I am there. Even on nap time most of the times she will wake up 2 to 3 times to make sure I am close. It is the sweetest thing and she is my baby girl, I couldn’t be more lucky, but sometimes I really need a break. I know there are mums out there that feel the same so I have a few tips I use myself in an everyday basic.LRM_EXPORT_566313040414173_20181102_141909139

Nagging. Toddlers may be nagging for their socks, for their toy not standing on a ball, or for any other reason. You may have all the good intentions to offer your hugs and understanding but at some point you start to get frustrated too. If I see her in a bad day all I do is to take her outside. We go for a walk. To me the answer to most issues is to just go out. As soon as we head to the door her face softens and she is smiling again. I show her the little bugs or we cut an olive from the tree and she is the happiest baby.  The world is full of exciting things for kids to explore, so you don’t have to go far, the playground or simply the street out of your house is the perfect place for a toddler to forget all his worries.LRM_EXPORT_566452655145804_20181102_142128753

Not eating. Your kid may be a champ at eating or a picky eater, but the truth is that most toddlers will have days or longer periods that will resist eating. I know how hard this is for a parent, you can’t just put him to bed with an empty stomach. It took me a long time to accept it, but eventually I made up my mind and I offer her healthy options and new tastes to try. I don’t push her, if she is hungry she will eat if not she won’t. Aren’t we doing the same? We can’t eat if we are not hungry either, can we? Toddlers are going through different phases with teething, growth spurts and many other things that have an impact in their eating and other aspects in their lifes. As long as the pediatrician says there is no reason to worry about, then don’t worry.

Tantrums. All toddlers at some point will have a tantrum. Some of them more often then the others. They cannot express what they want or how they feel in a situation so they start crying and shouting. Sometimes people may think that a kid who acts like that is a spoiled one, but this is not truth. It is just the way toddlers are. They get overwhelmed easily and we have to provide a safe environment for them at that moment. When my daughter goes through it I let her express herself and I am somewhere close to her so that she can see me. After the tornado I hug her and tell her that I understand why she felt like that and I probably ask questions so that she can totally let go of what got her upset.

 

When I am tired and have reached my limits, I tell her that I am tired and I need a moment. So, I go in an other room to calm down for a few seconds and then I get back. It is not about how to handle the toddler, is about yourself too. We are humans and my personal opinion is that I don’t find it wrong that the kids sees as in a vulnerable way. This is how we teach them empathy.

LRM_EXPORT_672610106403605_20181105_155605546

An other tip is to make fun on a difficult situation. Do you remember when you were a child how much you enjoyed to have fun and to lough with your parents? I’ve taken this advice from the book ‘The Danish Way of Parenting’, which is a great book by the way. One day in the playground, Amelia wanted to play with some older girls  but they didn’t want her, because she is just a baby. She stayed there disappointed, watching them go, then her daddy told her a funny Greek song about why she shouldn’t care of those girls not wanting to play with her. Amelia started dancing with the song and everything was ok! So don’t be afraid to turn an awkward moment into a funny one. They will also learn not to take hard moments too serious.

Tell me how do you deal with those situation? I am a new mom and any advice is welcomed.

 

Anna

MALTA WITH A BABY

LRM_EXPORT_422945486652566_20181030_132522474

The end of August 2017 found us looking for a new trip destination. It would be the first time abroad with the baby so we wanted something that we would be there within a two hours flight.The baby didn’t cry not even once during the whole trip. She was sitting in her stroller all the time and was very happy. Malta is very easy to get around and neither us or the kid got tired at all. I have to say that traveling with a four month old baby is not as challenging as you might think, as long as their needs are met they are happy and calm.

Malta had been on my mind for awhile, but for some reason I had never visited it. Mostly because when I asked people that had been there if they liked it, they said that it was similar to the island of Rhodes. Personally I did not find any similarities except of the fact that they are both islands. I have so many sweet memories from Malta! Amelia was only four months old and it was a whole new experience for us.

We stayed in Valletta which is the capital and is such a beautiful city. It kind of takes you back in time with the old streets and the port. As it was the beginning of September it was very hot and humid. I thought that summer vacations were over but we had the chance to enjoy the beach one more time.LRM_EXPORT_423085757334158_20181030_132742757

With Amelia in her stroller and amazed by all the new things she was seeing for the first time (she did not cry even once in the whole trip), we started our exploration with the Popeye Village. It is a bit far from Valletta but totally worth it. That day was raining so many activities were cancelled. However the park is so pretty and the sea has the most amazing green color I have probably ever seen. Amelia laughed for the first time there and I cried and laughed too when I heard her. It was such a special moment!

The second day we visited the Blue Lagoon and Mdina. You have to take the ferry boat to get you to Blue Lagoon. We thought it would be a big secure ship but when we saw the little boat called as ‘ferry’ we were pretty hesitant because of the baby. They reassured us that it was secure and eventually we trusted them. For our surprise, there were many babies in the Lagoon, all alive! The place was so crowed and the beach was dirty. It is one of the main touristic attractions so is normal. The place is really small and people were having so much fun dancing with the loud music and drinking cocktails. I am very glad we went there because of the island’s natural beauty, which was stunning. You cannot skip this trip if you go to Malta.

LRM_EXPORT_424588963495735_20181030_135640122

Mdina is the old town and the perfect place to get lost in. So many narrow streets with flowers everywhere and cute restaurants, you just wanna stay there all day long. Just make sure to make a reservation for dinner earlier because is quite difficult to find a table.LRM_EXPORT_423721136544817_20181030_133837542

Overall, I can say that Malta has a lot to offer, history, beauty, beaches, interesting sights and nice hotels. It is a small island, 4- 5 days are perfect to see everything, but I wish I could had stayed longer to get a full experience of this gorgeous country.

 

Anna

SNACK AND BREAKFAST IDEAS FOR BABIES

I try to offer only healthy food options to Amelia. No sugar, salt and processed food. It has not been easy though. Living in a Greek family where everyone has an advice to give me, sometimes made me feel unsecured about my parenting style. Questions like ‘This poor baby needs some sweet too after her meal.’ or ‘How is she gonna eat her food unsalted?’ hit me everyday. So, I haven’t been able to keep her totally away from what I consider wrong, but it is ok because kids need to be spoiled by their grandparents too. Today I am sharing some snacks and breakfast ideas that I often offer to Amelia. Her breakfast always has some protein combined  with fruits or veggies. When she was a baby she had an egg allergy, she is fine now, but doesn’t like to eat eggs, unless they are in a recipe.

  1. Pumpkin pancakes

LRM_EXPORT_131526309969254_20181022_145427988

It is possible to make these pancakes with only an egg and smashed pumpkin, but I add more ingredients to make them even more nutritious. Instead of pumpkin you can use sweet potato as well.

1 egg

3/4 cup of smashed pumpkin

1/4 cup of smashed banana

1 tablespoon almond powder

1/2 tablespoon tahini or any other nut butter

Mix all the ingredients together and cook the pancakes in a preheated pan for 3 minutes each side with butter or coconut oil, in medium heat.

 

2.  Sweet egg toast

LRM_EXPORT_131457857339226_20181022_145319535

This one is so delicious! It actually tastes like a pancake if you let the break soak in all the mixture.

2 slice of bread toast

1egg

2 tablespoons of milk

A pinch of cinnamon

Mix all the ingredients and let the bread soak in all the blend then cook the bread in medium heat. Enjoy with maple syrup or honey (for toddlers).

 

3. Soft apple cookies

20181025_150612

I took this recipe from this Greek facebook page https://www.facebook.com/groups/baby.nutrition/. The cookies are really soft, perfect for little kids, but we enjoyed them too.

100gr butter

150 gr honey or coconut sugar

1 egg

1 grated apple

1 tablespoon cinnamon

1/2 tablespoon baking soda

200 gr white flour

Mix all together with a spoon. Drop cookies by teaspoonful about 2 inches apart on greaseproof paper and cook in preheated oven at 338 degrees for 10 minutes. Enjoy!

Hope you liked those ideas and tell me if you want me to post more recipes. I have so many!

 

xo xo, Anna