A Reintroduction

For a while I’ve been wondering what to do with this blog – should it be a personal one or something more to do with the site? I like having guest blogs, and posting things that I think local parents might find interesting and rather thought that me posting about my own life might not be especially interesting to everyone reading. However, I do like reading personal blogs myself so thought I might as well start trying to keep up with doing one on here, as well as having the guest posts and the more informative ones, and if someone enjoys reading it, then great.

So, I suppose I’ll begin with a bit of a reintroduction! I’m Louise and I run the Essex Mums site. I started it back in 2008 when we’d moved back to Essex from Chicago after the birth of our son, Felix. I grew up in Basildon, went to school in Westcliff but found it very different to move back as a parent, especially as most of my friends were child-free and still living in London where we’d lived prior to moving to Chicago. I began to look around for things to do and as someone who had used forums before, tried to find something that was relevant to me as a parent in Essex. I found bigger parenting sites that were really wonderful resources, but nothing that felt as local as I was looking for. So I thought I’d have a go at starting something myself and the rest is history. I still can’t believe how well the site has done and how many people now use it, whether it’s for chatting about their days, finding out about things to do or anything else.

Anyway, I’m married to the lovely Kester and have two kids – Felix, who’s four and Iris who is two. They are fantastic chums and adore each other but are extremely different personality-wise. Felix is a bit of an over-thinker. He loves learning new things and takes great interest in how things work, why things are the way they are etc. He’s extremely inquisitive and full of questions but a bit of a worrier too. His currently obsessions are space and reading, and he starts school in September which seems crazy to me as he’s too tiny!

Iris is quite the character. A friend of mine (and fellow Essex Mum) described the difference between them nicely the other day when she said “while Felix is revising for his A-levels to become a doctor or something, Iris is going to be in the garden dancing around in wellies and sun dress pretending she is at V just ’cause…she can”. She’s a bright little thing too but is a bit wilder than her big brother and is very outgoing and seemingly fearless. I do worry we’re going to have our hands full with this one as a teenager!

Felix often talks about things he’d ‘like to do one day’ and I thought it would be funny to start making a list. It will probably get quite long so I thought I would share his top five… I asked Iris too and hers are even more mental. :lol:

What about your kids? What top five things do they want to do?

1. Go in a hot air balloon
2. Visit a volcano
3. Go in a paddle boat
4. Go to the Moon
5. Go to Jupiter

1. Go to nursery in September
2. Tickle Mummy, Daddy and Felix
3. Eat breakfast in the woods
4. Go to the pub :oops:
5. Wake up in the fridge


Erm, yes.


Mum2Mum Breastfeeding Support


Who are we?

We are a group of ordinary Mums just like you, only with experience and training in breastfeeding and support.

What do we do?

We offer support to Mums who are breastfeeding and need extra help.

We give information to Mums-to-be who we hope are going to choose to breastfeed.

We do not replace Midwives or Health Visitors we merely compliment their work by adding extra support for breastfeeding.

We are readily available; contact by special mobile line.

Home visits are possible.

We facilitate support groups. There are a number of these within the South East Essex area so there should be one local to you. They are run from clinics, church halls and children’s centres.

What Can We Offer?

• Experience of breastfeeding and its joys (and problems solving).
• Training on how to help prepare you for your breastfeeding experience.
• Training on how to help you with your breastfeeding.
• Facts about the benefits of breastfeeding.
• Information on ‘positioning’ and other strategies to help breastfeeding.
• A friendly face with an understanding ‘shoulder’.
• Out of hour’s advice and support.
• Suggestions on how to make breastfeeding work for you.
• Back-up to Midwives and Health visitors
• We know how enjoyable and rewarding breastfeeding can be, we want you to know this too!

Where are we?
We live locally and are contactable through the mobile phone link; or through the various support groups that are run by the volunteers; or your midwife or health visitor can contact us on your behalf.

To Contact:

Mobile phone number : 07801097605

To contact any of the breastfeeding support group please telephone:
Leave a message and we will get back to you as soon as we possibly can.
Ask your Midwife or Health Visitor to refer you to us.

Programme Manager:
Pauline Hammond, Children’s Service Clinical Lead
South East Essex Primary Care Trust
Contactable on: 01268 366840 mobile: 07973672524

Essex Mums Newsletter May 2010

Hello everyone,

Hope you’re having a lovely weekend. I’ll try to keep this short as I’m sure you’re all very busy!

Firstly a big hello to all our new forum members from the last month – we had around 50 new members join in April, which is just great. While some of you have dived right and and become familiar faces already, many are still being a bit shy. There’s no need! We’re a lovely bunch and always keen to meet new people, so please come and say hello! You can either introduce yourself or get stuck into an existing thread, and hopefully can meet new friends. If you need any further encouragement, take a look at this thread started by one of our members about life without Essex Mums and see some of the lovely things that are said about what other Mums have gained from the site.

Now that the weather is getting nicer (and hopefully will stay that way), more meet-ups are being planned, so come and take a look, or feel free to start one near you. Last month we had a great day out organised by one of the forum members at Wat Tyler Park, which had a great turn-out, though unfortunately lots of us got separated before the picnic! I know a few people have commented that the meet-ups often tend to be in the Southend area, and this is true, but the only way to combat this is to suggest something near you! I’m more than happy to put something on the Facebook Group too and invite people that way, please just let me know. I know it can be daunting starting something yourself, but perhaps suggesting a picnic in the park is a good way to start. Everyone is welcome to come along to the coffee mornings/afternoons too, and we’re looking for more people to hold them, so why not hold one yourself?

Evening Echo
Some of you may have seen me in the Evening Echo last week talking about the site. Well, keep an eye out this monday too as a few of our members will be in there talking about the upcoming election. When the articles appear on their website I’ll share them on Essex Mums too.

Shopping Guide
As the year is ticking by (how can it be May?!), all shopping guide ads are now reduced from £50 to £35, so if you’ve been umming and ahhing about being included, now is your chance!

As always, please send me any upcoming events you have, particularly for half-term or bank holiday. Also make sure your attraction is listed on the map and Places to Go section!

Your Input
Please take a moment to look around the Family-Friendly Eats and Places to Go sections as they need your input! They are very much works in progress but please leave your comments and ratings. Likewise, if there’s anything you would like to say on the Blog, please get in touch!

I always appreciate feedback about the site, whether good or bad, so please get in touch if you have something to say. Whether it’s ‘this part of the site looks wonky to me’ or some fantastic idea you have about how the site could benefit you, please do let me know.

At the risk of sounding like a nag, please do remember to vote on May 6th, both nationally and locally. I know Mums often feel like they have no voice, and wonder if their vote really makes a difference, but you only need to look at the political sway large Mums’ sites like Mumsnet have been having recently to realise this isn’t the case at all. Politicians know well that Mums are the ones who really understand what is needed in crucial areas like Health and Education, for example, and it’s important that you use your voice to try and get a better future for you and your children.

Hope to see you at a meet-up soon!
Kind regards


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