Tag Archive | "Truth about Motherhood"


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What’s so great about wearing your baby?

Posted on 11 October 2013 by Kristrun

Baby wearing has been practised for centuries around the globe. But it seems that we, in the industrialised world, are only recently realising its benefits.

Not so long ago, common advice was to “put baby down” as often as possible so it does not “learn bad habits” and be unable to soothe or settle itself. Now some are thinking differently and co-sleeping, attachment parenting and baby-wearing are becoming increasingly popular.BabaSling

These fancy names are all behind the theory that, instead of “teaching” your infant or child independence by encouraging him to deal with situations alone, one remains emotionally and physically available to the child for as long as she needs and wants it.

This harbours a deep bond between parent and child, increasing a sense of well-being and resulting in a happy, confident child who will seek independence instinctively and happily when he or she is ready and be more content and confident when that happens. In fact, there is some suggestion that babies who are worn often gain independece faster than those who are not, as they are less anxious and more secure, having had their needs fully met from birth.

All that time and bonding increases the mother’s confidence too as she becomes increasingly in tune with her baby and in her ability to know what her child needs. Some evidence suggests that attachment parenting and baby wearing results in a decreased risk of post natal depression.

“Baby wearing is a natural extension of kangaroo care” says Annerley midwife Olavia. “This practice was developed for premature babies when it was realised that skin-to-skin contact with a mother’s chest could do a far better job at regulating a tiny baby than any incubator, and the positive effects are not only physical, but emotional too – both for baby and mother.” Skin to skin contact is now widely encouraged following all births.

There is also evidence to suggest that baby wearing improves a baby’s learning of language and socialisation. Being so physically close to another person for long periods of time means they quickly pick up human cues, expressions and language.

As well as all these developmental benefits, it is also very convenient to have your little one strapped to your body as it leaves your hands free to do other tasks. You spend less time soothing and rocking

and settling baby also as, as Olafia points out “babies who are worn cry less!”

It is especially pertinent here in Hong Kong, where the environment can be very unsuitable for a stroller or pram!

It can take a little getting used to, especially when your baby is very small, but it is well worth the effort. We all know babies stop crying when we pick them up and carry them. Because they love it and that is where they want to be.

We have several baby carriers available at Annerley and Kristrun is always happy to give a demonstration!

What’s so great about wearing your baby?

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do you know the truth about motherhood?

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do you know the truth about motherhood?

Posted on 18 March 2013 by Annerley

Do you know the truth about motherhood? I mean, the real truth not the version that is presented in movies and magazine and novels. That version presents a lot of lovely images of sleeping babies and smiling parents and smooth sailing down the path of parenthood … some of which is true. Ok maybe ‘some’ is a slight exaggeration. But it’s not exactly a true and fair representation of what to expect. The reality is a whole different kettle of fish…

Orla Breeze

orla breeze, joyful parenting


Hubby:          “Honey I’m home!”

You:             (jolted awake) “Whaat? Who? Who’s that? Where’s the baby?”

Hubby:          “In the Moses Basket. How could you not know that?”

You:             “Ha ha! Of course I knew that. Just kidding. Am completely on top of this mothering lark!”

Hubby:          “What are you wearing?”

You:             “Oh this? It’s a sleepwear/maternity clothes combo. I’m calling it Majamas. You don’t like?”

Hubby:          “It’s not that I don’t like it, it’s em, different. I’m just wondering why you’re still not dressed at 7pm”

You:             “I am dressed.”

Hubby:          “Ooookaaaaay. So what’s for dinner?”

You:             “Hahahahahahaha! Oh you’re hilarious. Wait, that’s not a joke?”

Hubby:          (Hesitatingly) “No? I mean, yes! Yes, it’s a huge joke! Let me get into the kitchen and throw something together.”

You:             “Excellent. Away you go.”

Hubby:          “Oh my God! Have we been burgled?”

If you’d like to read more of this article, click here


For full information on her Truth About Motherhood evening, click here!


Orla Breeze is the founder of Joyful Parenting — workshops, evenings and individual sessions focussing on simple and effective ways to create a joyful family life. She runs her workshops in collaboration with us here at Annerley. Orla also writes a humorous column on parenting for Playtimes magazine.



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Simple Steps to Joyful Parenting

Posted on 08 October 2012 by Annerley


Switch Your Focus

Spend 5 minutes each day focusing on all the things in your life that are good and positive and beautiful. We have become so used to dwelling on our problems and our pain that it’s no wonder we struggle to see the joy in every moment. As soon as we switch our focus and remind ourselves of all that is ‘right’ in our lives, we begin to attract more positivity into our daily life. The happier we are in ourselves, the more joyful is our parenting.

Stop Worrying

As a parent, we often worry about situations that simply don’t exist. We look at our children and wonder if they would happier if they had more friends or more toys or clothes. Maybe they would be happier if we moved to another country or took more holidays or joined another activity club. But if we simply stop and look at our children right now, it may very well be that they are perfectly happy just as they are. The measure of a child’s happiness is a child’s happiness.

Look Inward

When a baby is born s/he is a blank page so as they grow, they learn all they know from us. How we behave, act and react becomes the norm for them. So when an aspect of your child’s behaviour really irritates you, it’s time to look inwards and ask who they may have learned that from. As soon as you recognise it in yourself and change the way you’re behaving, guess what? Your child’s behaviour changes too.

Quell Your Anger

Children are loving and beautiful beings but let’s face it, are often the complete opposite too! When your child’s repeated behaviour triggers anger within you, this is an opportunity for both of you. For you, it is a chance to realise that you are not controlled by your anger. That you can walk away until you calm down or simply take a deep breath and count to ten before you deal with the situation at hand. As your child watches, s/he learns that it is natural to pause before reacting to a situation and this will greatly assist them as they grow.

Let Go Of Guilt

Everyone loses their temper with their child at one time or another. The Knowledge First Financial reviews claim that it’s really very commonplace. But instead of following up with a good dose of guilt, just accept it. Accept that your child has pushed your buttons and that you reacted to that. Then decide what to do about it. Sit down with your child no matter how young and explain that you were tired or upset about something else and that you took it out on them. Tell them that you’re sorry and that you will do your best not to let that happen again. But most of all let them know that it wasn’t their fault. That sometimes grown-ups say things that they really don’t mean. By explaining your behaviour to them, your children will gain a greater understanding of their own. And they’ll never be afraid to say they’re sorry.

Stop Shouting!

If you find yourself shouting at your kids when they don’t seem to be listening, the good news is that you’re not alone. The bad news is, however, that your shouting is unlikely to have any real effect on your kids. Our children see us as we are. If we shout often, they just take that as a normal part of our personality. Why not try the opposite approach? Maybe a calm voice that gives them the option of doing as you ask or losing their favourite toy for a week? You may be surprised at the effect that has on them. It also has the added benefit of reducing your own stress levels.


Workshop Facilitator & EFT practitioner, Orla Breeze works with new parents and parents-to-be here at annerley where she runs her popular workshops Daddy 101 & The Truth About Motherhood 


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It’s Not You, It’s Me… How our Children Reflect our Behaviour

Posted on 14 August 2012 by Annerley

About a year or so into parenthood, it slowly starts to dawn on you that bringing up baby is a lot more about how you behave than how your kid does. This is not something that gets explained to you in advance. When a child is born s/he knows absolutely nothing about social rules or how, when or where s/he should behave. In fact, all s/he really knows is water, darkness and sound. As a parent, it falls on us to teach the rest. So it follows that when we’re unhappy with aspects of their behaviour, we can’t really blame them as we were the ones who taught them to behave that way in the first place. We may have done this very consciously by deciding to respond to certain situations in specific ways or we could have done this unconsciously simply by being ourselves. That realisation is quite a big one because it means that we are one big walking, talking example for their behaviour. And that, of course, means that if we want them to change, we have to change first. GULP!

So how on earth do we start? Well, the good news is that your little one is a great indicator of your starting point. For the first 7 years of their lives, they pretty much learn from observing us. That means the chances are fairly high that aspects of their character that annoy us the most are, unfortunately, aspects of ourselves that annoy us the most. So when I once asked a wise man why my son was always moaning and complaining, he told me that it was because I too did a lot of that so my son thought it must be a good thing to do. Ouch! I had to take a long look at myself after that revelation and make some pretty drastic changes to my behaviour.

The benefits of taking this approach are really high. When we change and let go of those parts of ourselves that we don’t like, our children change too. As we behave, so they behave. It’s a simple truth but does require some kind of regular ongoing practice to maintain. That doesn’t mean that you need to take yourself to some mountain top somewhere and meditate in silence for long periods of time – although that is quite tempting when you’re with your kids 24/7 – even a couple of minutes a day of simple deep breathing can make the world of a difference.

Here at Annerley, we don’t just work with you whilst you’re going through the process of becoming a parent. We also offer workshops and evenings to assist at every stage of parenthood. Being a parent is a lifelong commitment and every parent could do with some extra tips and techniques from time to time. If you’re a new Dad or Dad-to-Be, you may like to get all your questions answered at our Daddy 101 evening. New Mums are welcome to join us for our Truth About Motherhood workshops where we let you in on the secrets to time-management and planning for the future and also introduce you to a couple of techniques for the kind of conscious parenting this article has talked about. And for those of you who want to work on specific issues that are coming up for your family, we offer one-to-one EFT sessions.  Further information on all of these courses can be found by clicking here on ‘Other Classes’. We hope to see you there!


Workshop Facilitator & EFT practitioner, Orla Breeze works with new parents and parents-to-be here at annerley where she runs her popular workshops Daddy 101 & The Truth About Motherhood 


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Are you a Natural Mother?

Posted on 27 June 2012 by Annerley

Before I became a Mum, a few people told me that I would be a Natural Mother and I believed them. I didn’t see any reason not to. In fact, it comforted me to know that I could skip towards motherhood safe in the knowledge that it would all come naturally to me. But then I gave birth and realised pretty fast that they weren’t just a little bit wrong, they were completely and utterly wrong! Looking back, I can understand why I wanted to believe them but the fact is, it was never going to happen.

The truth is there’s no such thing as a Natural Mother (so if you answered the above question with a no, you can breathe a sigh of relief!). It’s true that some women have more of an aptitude for it than others but to have some kind of natural all-encompassing knowledge of something you have never experienced before just doesn’t make any sense. If I was to begin any other job in any other field, I wouldn’t expect to know it all before I began. Sure I would spend time researching and asking questions but my expectation would be to learn the vast majority on the job. It’s the same for Motherhood. The job of taking care of another human being – feeding, clothing, routines etc – is not something that we learn by osmosis from our own mothers or simply because we’re female. It’s something that we learn as we go. However, for one reason or another, we sometimes get a strange idea that we’ll just know what our baby needs when s/he needs it. Don’t get me wrong, we do reach this place eventually but no faster than we would reach a similar sense of certainty in any other situation. It takes time for all of us. Every baby is different as is every mother.

What does help is to ask, ask and keep on asking. Some responses you’ll consider, others you’ll discard but each piece of advice will help you to get to that place of certainty faster. Here, at Annerley, we want to support you in getting to that place so this July we’re introducing a whole new workshop just for that purpose. The Truth About Motherhood is a 4-part workshop for Mums-only that will give you plenty of tips, techniques and true stories about life as a Mum in Hong Kong. And because we know how precious your time is, we’re keeping each workshop to just one hour each week. So if you want to know the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth from someone who’s been through it all three times, simply click here!


Orla Breeze works with new parents and parents-to-be here at annerley where she runs her popular workshops Daddy 101 & The Truth About Motherhood

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