The Mama Tribe Gift Guide
There’s a massive range of gifts out there for mums-to-be and new mums, and social media has created fab platforms to discover small, unique and top quality companies showing off their gift ideas. Treats, whether it's an indulgent, expensive gift, or a homemade gift, are sure to give them a 'pick-me-up' they'll be grateful for. To help you find the perfect gift for the mum-to-be, a new mum in your life or something for your own mum on Mother's Day (26th March 2017), here are some of our favs, as recommended by my Mama Tribe and me:
'More than just gift boxes. Oh Me Oh Mama is made for mamas, by mamas. Created for all new, expecting and breastfeeding mothers at every stage of their exciting new adventure into motherhood.'
Not only are their gifts beautiful and a real treat, we also love their #makeamamasmile project. You can nominate a mum to receive a free surprise #happyhamper to let them know you're thinking of them and that you think they're doing a great job. (And check out these brilliant boobie pins and titty tote bags! LOVE!)
Set up in 2014 by mum of two, Steph, Don't Buy Her Flowers' aim is 'to provide thoughtful gift packages for new mums, because they deserve something lovely just for them.'
‘When I had my first baby, I received eight bunches of flowers. We didn’t have a lot of space and we certainly didn’t own multiple vases. I had to give them away or bin the least fresh to make way for the most recent. I also felt completely overwhelmed with everything – the baby, the visitors, the bodily functions – and trying to arrange flowers and then dispose of them was all a bit much, however pathetic that sounds. I found that other parents felt the same and Don’t Buy Her Flowers was born.’ Steph Douglas, creator of dontbuyherflowers.com
We offer free pregnancy relaxations sessions at Miriam Greaves Hypnobirthing, so point your mum-to-be friend in my direction. An Introduction to Hypnobirthing session costs just £55 and will leave the mum-to-be and her birth partner feeling much more informed, confident and calm about birth - money well spent, even if I do say so myself! Even better, they'll get 20% off any full course with me!
You might have come across &Breathe Postnatal in our Mama Meets series. Founder, Clio, has recently joined our Meet the Team page.
'Award-winning retreats designed specifically for new mums and dads and their little ones, we help you re-boot after having a baby. We offer retreats in rural France, day retreats in London and postnatal workshops to get you back to normality. All with built in childcare.'
Instead of bath oils and candles at the baby shower, why not get your group of girlfriends to club together and buy the mum-to-be a set of pregnancy yoga sessions at your nearest gym or studio. The wonderful Lucy at my local Reigate Dance Studio, in Surrey, is launching this very soon and it's set to be super popular!
What mum-to-be or new mum would say no to some quiet pampering?! Lots of salons offer pregnancy massage, but to be honest, any type of pampering gets the thumbs up when you're pregnant or a sleep deprived mum!
Very much tried, tested and loved by my Mama Tribe and me is The Little Beauty Company in Ashtead, Surrey. Laura, a mum herself, does a great range of treatments for mums, from facials, to waxes and pedicures for tired feet. If you're a fan of reflexology or you're quite intrigued by it, then you must book yourself an appointment with Jeanette from Relaxing Feet. She is part of our 'Meet the Team' page because her services are to die for! I visited Jeanette whilst I was pregnant and it worked wonders for me. So many of my clients and Mummy friends rave about Serenity Massage Services - Liz is amazing and has relieved many aching backs and hips, which we can all experience during pregnancy. We're also fans of Luminus in Reigate. Book me in!
Chasing Zero have set up Pregnancy Twinning to give you the chance to support a pregnant woman in Malawi to receive basic, yet essential, antenatal and birth support. It's such a fab concept: if you're pregnant or know someone that is, you pay the equivalent of just £1 per week of pregnancy, and an expectant mum in Malawi gets help to travel to antenatal appointments, support from a Mother Buddy (another fab scheme they run), transport to hospital when she is in labour, the opportunity to give birth in a safe clinic, visits for six months after birth to receive advice about nutrition, hygiene and staying healthy. What's not to love about this?! They also offer Mother's day cards, so order now so it arrives in time!
I didn't know much about essentials oils before I became pregnant and, now I'm a mother of two, I'm totally hooked. The benefits, both physically and mentally, are wonderful and I love to use them on myself and my children. My favourite brand is doTERRA and I purchase all my oils from Verity Isik at Life Balance, based in Surrey. She is passionate about female health and mental wellbeing as well as that of children and families. She will spend time talking to you about your needs, emotions and health so she can recommend the most beneficial oils for you. My favourite are Balance, Lavender and Breath.
Now this is a topic I could talk about for hours!! It can be so difficult to buy jewellery for someone - it's so personal - but there are a few places I love that sell that 'extra special' something for a Mum or Mum-to-be. One of my favourites is Beyond the Willow Tree. They specialise in hand made DNA keepsake artistry, such as jewellery from breast milk, a loved ones hair, natural elements, and much more. I'm particularly in love with the collection of rings containing a child's lock of hair - they're so beautiful. The other one-stop place I love to visit for jewellery is Gerrards in Reigate, Surrey. Their collection is right on trend and timeless with it. I love their Instagram too - as a busy Mama who has no time to sit and read the latest edition of Grazia, Gerrards keeps me up-to-date on whats in and what's not!. It was Gerrards that introduced me to the designer, Rachel Jackson - I have the initial charms for both my children. Simple, affordable and perfect for any new Mama.
Kelly took the most beautiful pictures of my daughter a few weeks after she was born, so she definitely comes recommended by me! Kelly also does hand and feet casting, so you can capture the cuteness forever!
You definitely don't have to spend lots of money to treat the mum-to-be or new mum. Cooking them and their birth partner a few meals and dropping it round to their house is probably the greatest gift a new parent can receive! The Cook shop offer 10% off for new parents for 6 months. I'm still buying their meals on a weekly basis 8 months on!
No top gift list would be complete without the sweet stuff...and I'm talking delicious, dreamy chocolate. For years I was obsessed with Lindt chocolates....until Monty Bojangles came into my life. A Mummy friend bought some for me when I needed cheering up and now my fridge can't be without a cheeky box tucked away in the corner! So many flavours to choose from, beautiful packaging and a perfect little gift for any Mama who deserves a little treat. Oh, and the cafe in Reigate, Surrey, is great too - my daughter loves the Babycinos (and Mummy loves the crumpets with melted truffles. Delicious!).
An invite to your local Positive Birth Movement group could be another top gift! We are a global network of free to attend antenatal groups, linked up by social media. We connect pregnant women together to share stories, expertise and positivity about childbirth. We aim to challenge the epidemic of negativity and fear that surrounds modern birth, and help change birth for the better. Join us as we meet up, link up and shake up birth!
Find your local PBM group here. I run PBM in Redhill & Reigate, Dorking & Leatherhead, and Caterham & Chaldon, and others are located all across the U.K. Invite your new mum or mum-to-be friends to the relevant Facebook page today! Here's a a video I made about the Redhill group.