Bumpfest 2014

BumpfestEver heard of it? Well it’s a one day event to help expectant parents (mums and dads!) get to grips with what’s about to happen to their lives during birth and beyond when you suddenly have a tiny person living in your home. It is an Event run by Mumsnet and this year (its first year) it was sponsored by Aldi.

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So registration was between 9 and 9:30am which meant I had to get up, ready and into London very early on a Saturday morning. However, once there I was greeted by the smell of coffee and some fruit (which went down very well!). It was lovely to see how many couples had attended but there were also quite a few women on their own or with grandmothers-to-be which was nice; it really was an event for all.

 

So the morning started with a Keynote from Dr Penelope Law, Mars Lord, Linda Geddes, Jenny Fraser, Sally Peck and Olivia Robinson (which include an obstetrician, a doula, a midwife and a scientific journalist). The keynote speech was a myth busting speech and went through things like breastfeeding and how it’s not always easy (if you don’t get the right help quickly enough), writing a birthplan and the possibilities of that ‘plan’ not coming true and instant bonding with your baby and how actually it isn’t always instant (I’ve written about my experiences with bonding with my daughter previously and you can read my thoughts here).

 

While the keynote was really very interesting – I love hearing what different people have to say on matters like this, I didn’t really learn an awful lot as I’ve already gone through the experience once. Although, being pregnant again, it did make me consider all my options again. The talk was hugely informative and well worth it for first time mums and dads.

 

There were then break-out sessions to choose from including: breastfeeding, baby first aid, a survival guide for new dads and bonding. Again, because I have already had a baby, now 2-years-old, I decided to attend the baby first aid which was provided by the Red Cross. It was really informative and I would highly recommend going on one of the longer courses if possible. There is also a fantastic FREE app which can be downloaded and it’s bursting with fantastic information.

 

The baby first aid session mainly talked about choking in a baby under 12 months and burns on babies. We got to practice on dummy babies which actually made you realise how ‘hard’ you sometimes have to be when trying to help a choking baby – had I not been to this course, I really wouldn’t have realised.

 

Next up there was the choice of break-out sessions including: developing your child’s brain, the business of parenting and a repeated session on breastfeeding and baby first aid. I went to the developing your baby’s brain session led by Penelope Leach. It was incredibly interesting and some of the points she raised, while you might think they were obvious, were hugely poignant – things were raised like leaving your child to cry and the emotional damage it can cause as well as irrational fears and how they aren’t irrational to babies.

 

Lunch was then served and it was delicious. To wash it down, there were some incredibly tasty non-alcoholic cocktails too. During lunch, I managed to talk to the Mamas and Papas stand and try the new Armadillo Flip (AMAZING!), talk to my sponsors of the event, Aldi, and taste their fantastic range of own label food and I met with the other sponsors of the event too.

 

After lunch, the keynote was a sleep masterclass led by Andrea Grace. She spoke about routine and how important it is to get into routine if you want your child to sleep. I think one of the key things to note is that your sleep patterns will change regardless and routine isn’t immediate. Newborns are all different and their sleep patterns will be too.

 

The final break-out sessions being run were: attachement parenting, a flexible routine, breastfeeding and baby first aid. Because I had been to all the sessions I felt could benefit me, I took advantage of the free manicure on offer by Wah Nails – can I just say a HUGE thank you as I can’t remember the last time I had that done!!

 

After this, I had to catch my train home so unfortunately didn’t get the chance to see the final keynote which was aptly named the apocalypse (the weeks following birth). However, on leaving, I was given a goody bag crammed full of goodies from the sponsors including vests from Mamas and Papas, a carseat toy, food (including AMAZING chocolate from Aldi), drinks, creams and more.

 

Overall this was a hugely interesting event and I would recommend it to any first time parents. It would have given me peace of mind if I had gone before the birth of my daughter and would have given me the chance to ask some of those burning questions I had. Well done Mumsnet and thanks once again to all the sponsors for making it happen, especially Aldi.

Comments

  1. This blog was… how do I say it? Relevant!! Finally I have found something which helped me.

    Thank you!

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