Adventures of a Free-From Clothbum Mum!

Cloth nappies, dairy-free living, reviews and parental ramblings!

The True Diary of Baby’s First Year: Review

on January 7, 2013


Now, I’m an absolutely avid book reader. Well, ok – that’s a lie. I USED to be an avid book reader but I seem to have waned over the years, especially recently. When I got pregnant, I thought that I’d read lots and lots of books aimed at mummies-to-be, but I really surprised myself. I just didn’t.

I think part of the reason was that I read a little bit of one (not to be named but astoundingly and annoying popular) book that got me so angry with it’s very prescriptive and, in my opinion, cruel methods that I decided to just follow instincts. The internet has been incredibly helpful and through it I’ve discovered a whole host of people whose books I might not have come across, along with books that have affirmed the way in which we have chosen to parent our little one (I’ve discovered names for the things that we’ve been doing just as they felt right!)

Charlie Plunkett is one of these people. She’s written quite a few parenting books/ diaries and I’ve actually contributed to her most recent book, ‘100 little words on Parenthood’ that I obviously think is well worth a read (not that I’m biased, or anything…!)

Her book, ‘The True Diary of Baby’s First Year’ is one of those parenting books that is just so refreshing. I’ve been reading it over the past month or so and it’s drawn me in beautifully. The book is written as a week-by-week account of Charlie and her husband, Dave’s journey into parenthood following the birth of their son, Cole. From the moment I picked up the book, I felt instantly very comfortable – there’s just something about the way in which Charlie writes that makes you feel as if you almost know her and can really relate to her. I’ve found myself really feeling for them as I have read about their battles with getting Cole to breastfeed properly at the very beginning, through to taking part in baby massage classes (we loved ours and it sounds as if Charlie had as much fun at hers as I did at ours!) as well as nodding in total agreement when I read about how emotional Charlie got on her first Mother’s Day (I was a bit of blubbery wreck on mine!)

What I really like about the book is that at end of each week, Charlie has written some simple, bulleted little hints, tips and ideas for new mums to pick up suggestions from. They’re really effective and I wish that I’d had that kind of resource easily to hand when I was starting out with little Monkey. There’s a particularly helpful section in Week 2 for new breastfeeding mums that has information on how you can include Dad (which, I think is so so important) and later on in the book I found her thoughts on Steiner-style education quite interesting (it’s actually led me to rediscover this way of teaching, which is something that I’m finding fascinating).

I’ve found the references to vegan recipes very interesting (and mouthwatering) and, again, really wish that I’d seen this earlier as I got to a stage where weaning Monkey (who has quite a few different allergies and intolerances) quite tricky. This has led me to Google more vegan recipes that I’ve been alternating with other meals in our house and he absolutely loves them. It’s been really useful for giving me alternatives to a lot of dairy-based meals which I was struggling with – so thank you, Charlie very much for inspiring me!

I’d really recommend this book as one of those that you can either curl up and lose yourself in (as best you can with an ever-increasing bump if you’re reading this prior to having your little one) or as one that you can dip into for handy little hints and tips. By the end of the book you really feel that you’ve been allowed a precious insight into Charlie’s world with her beautiful little boy.

daisytheclothbummum was sent this book for reviewing purposes. All words, thoughts and opinions are my own.


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