THERE’S not many people who can claim to be an expert when it comes to parenting or childcare.
But on Tuesday, I met one woman who absolutely can.
One woman who has helped parents across the world get to grips with more tricky parenting dilemmas than you can shake a stick at. The wonderful Jo Frost, AKA ‘Supernanny’.
I was invited to an intimate event at ‘The Library’ (a gorgeous place if ever there was one!) in London to find out more about how Jo is working with the BookTrust on their new campaign #BathBookBed.
Where together I and a small group of very lovely bloggers were given the chance to chat to Jo about our parenting dilemmas (more of that in a minute!) over a glass of bucks fizz and a few fine nibbles.
It’s not often I’ll take time away from the office to attend an event when it comes to blogging, mainly because I have to be incredibly strict with my limited work time.
But as soon as this invitation popped into my inbox, I knew I had to attend. Because as an avid bookworm and a mum who doesn’t get enough decent sleep, this campaign spoke to me!
The Bath, Book, Bed campaign is all about encouraging parents to stick to a simple bedtime routine with a soothing story to help their children sleep better and is spearheaded by Jo, who is on hand to provide advice to parents.
According to a recent survey carried out by BookTrust, Britain’s largest reading charity, nearly 80% of mums and dads say that lack of sleep is the hardest part of being a parent. Something I most definitely would agree with!
And this is why I personally think this campaign is a fantastic idea.
To most of us, the notion of Bath, Book, Bed is nothing new. I know in our house, we’ve been doing this pretty much since Elsie came home from hospital as a newborn.
But I never realised, until meeting Jo on Tuesday, just how important it is.
For example, did you know that a bath before bed enables children to release any last bursts of pent up energy or that reading bedtime stories not only hugely improves their literacy levels but also promotes morals and good values?
For me, bedtime has always been my favourite part of the day to spend with Elsie, as we wind down and she snuggles in for a cuddle and a story or two.
Not so long ago I even introduced a little gratitude exercise to our bedtime routine, in which I ask Elsie to tell me three of her favourite things that have happened that day.
We do it after the story and before I tuck her in, and it’s become a really special moment for both of us.
But if you’re struggling with your bedtime routine or with finding the time to carry one out properly on a daily basis, please do check out the new campaign and get some advice.
The BookTrust is encouraging parents to sign-up via its website to ’14 Days to Better Sleep’ and you’ll find all kinds of support there including tips and videos to help you adopt the routine.
And when you know these tips will be coming from Supernanny herself? Well really, you’d be crazy not to have a go.
Because let me tell you, I think Jo may actually have some kind of magic powers. Truly I do!
As part of the event on Tuesday, us bloggers got to sit around a table with Jo to hear some of her parenting advice and to ask for her help with our own particular sleep (or lack of sleep!) problems.
And let me tell you, all the advice she gave to people was golden. Golden nuggets of wisdom that’s she gained from over 25 years of working with little people.
How do I know she might be some kind of parenting wizard?
Well, after months of having Elsie sleeping in my bed with me, I tried out the advice Jo personally gave me on Tuesday night and low and behold, I kid you not, she SLEPT. In her OWN BED. ALL NIGHT!
I still actually can’t quite believe it.
Elsie forever wakes up saying she’s too scared to sleep in her own room, so Jo encouraged me to ‘work with her’ and use my ‘mummy magic’ to tackle anything in her room that made her frightened. And so I did.
I removed pictures from the wall, I took a couple of toys away and I put a ‘magic spell’ on the room.
It added about an extra 10 mins to our bedtime routine but worked like a dream. And even though we had a setback last night, I know if I stick with it, things will most definitely improve.
The woman is a GURU! (Thank you Jo!)
So there you have it, if you need more sleep, go and sign up to the campaign right now and make some changes. You never know, it may just work miracles.
Huge thanks to the BookTrust, Tots100 and the very lovely Jo Frost for hosting such a wonderful (and useful!) event.