One of the nicest ladies in showbiz, it’s always a pleasure to catch up with singer, Britain’s Got Talent judge – and most importantly, fellow working mum Alesha Dixon.
Bumping into her at the Little Black Dress cocktail party, in the glamorous surroundings of Piccadilly’s Hotel Café Royal, she broke the news that she’s joined the online retailer and fashion brand’s board of directors.
Fresh from releasing her latest album Do It For Love, Dixon spoke of her desire to see Little Black Dress develop into ‘more of a lifestyle brand’, for the company to forge links with charities such as domestic abuse charity Refuge and plans to create her own collection early next year. And so, yet another string to add to her bow.
Dixon, who’s mum to daughter Azura Sienna (who recently turned two), was all smiles as we discussed our little ones, using the words ‘it’s great, isn’t it?’ to describe parenthood. Well, I couldn’t have said it better myself! Juggling motherhood and the world of work is never an easy one, but it always helps to do it with a smile!
It’s back to reality for me after a few weeks holidaying in the motherland, but despite having spent such a ‘concentrated’ amount of time with my parents, I’m here in London tapping my fingers and waiting in anticipation for the return of my mother.
Obviously in general I love my mum and all that, but I, like so many working parents out there, rely on the help of my own mother when it comes to extra childcare and all round support.
It got me thinking about some parenting advice I was given by none other than TV presenter Jeff Brazier – Jade Goody’s ex and father to their two sons, Bobby, nine, and Freddie, eight.
Chatting to Jeff at last month’s Gala Bingo launch party at London’s Delfina, where Peter Andre’s latest ad for the company was celebrated, I asked how he managed to combine his work schedule with looking about two young boys.
He was quick to respond, ‘My number one tip is not to take your mum for granted. My mum helps me out a lot, so I have a deal with her where I pay half her rent for which she gives me a certain amount of her time each week.
‘It sounds quite formal and regimented, but it’s not! It just means we each know where we stand and she doesn’t feel that I’m taking her for granted. But it doesn’t count if the boys just fancy spending Saturday night with their Nan – that’s separate from the deal! Each week I let her know my schedule and when I’ll need her, so she can also make her own plans’.
Sounds like good advice all round to me…
PS – Hurry home Mummy! x
When I heard the latest news today that a pilot scheme is being planned in parts of Sheffield and Chesterfield to encourage more mothers to breastfeed their babies – I held my breath and listened out to hear what would be the latest way for new mums to feel even more pressure to live up to the often used adage ‘breast is best’.
So, wait for it…. – £200 in shopping vouchers if you breastfeed for the recommended six months. Oh great, brilliant. Or rather slightly condescending and/or patronising… thinking that the chance for a bit of retail therapy can form the basis of someone’s decision as to whether or not to breastfeed their child. And sometimes the choice to breastfeed is simply a decision that’s taken out of your hands. So what would happen then? Surely it would be as if that parent was being penalised.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for breastfeeding, but what horrifies me is the pressure us mums are put under – by both our peers, elders and organisations – to consider it as the only option.
I was lucky – (when I say lucky, I still had initial problems getting my daughter to latch on and throughout breastfeeding, Lansinoh was a regular addition to my shopping list!) but sometimes it upsets me to think about, and witness, the stress and difficulty some mothers (and of course their partners looking on) go through getting their babies to latch on / breastfeed – made only worse by judging comments or the feeling that they’re simply giving up or not trying hard enough.
Only time will tell if this pilot scheme works – happy babies aren’t just the result of simply being breastfed. A happy home goes a long way too.
Above all, surely education and support is the best way forward, instead of what appears to be a case of pure bribery?
Normal service (ie celebrity chat etc) will resume shortly!
I’M not one for picking up calendars but during one of my – MANY – markets over the Christmas period, I couldn’t resist this one from @cafeartuk 👌🏾
The amazing snaps featured were the result of 100 single use cameras being handed to homeless people or those at risk of homelessness whether through addiction or mental health issues.
It was great to hear about the project so just thought I’d share 😁