Baptism of fire: were you pressured to christen your baby?

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Kylie Orr What kind of God would deem a tiny baby ineligible for entry into Heaven because they were not cleansed of original sin before they died?

What 'The Voice' can teach us about motherhood and creativity

The voice

Amity Dry As The Voice takes over her TV screen and she counts down the days until her musical opens, Amity Dry ponders the ideas of creativity and parenting.

A broken leg, but who's complaining?

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Amity Dry A toddler with a broken leg has made Amity Dry grateful for what her family does have - and amazed at the way some other families cope with their misfortunes.

Kids or spouse: who do you love more?

Keith Urban and Nicole Kidman.

Amity Dry Country singer Keith Urban has admitted to loving his wife, Nicole Kidman, more than his children. Has he got it right, Amity Dry asks, or should the kids always come first?

Amity Dry's blog

Different backgrounds, same dreams

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AMITY DRY March 21 is Harmony Day, a day when all Australians can celebrate cultural diversity. For Amity Dry's son, it's just another fun day with his classmates from around the world.

How do you know when you're done?

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Amity Dry How do you know when to stop having children? Should you listen to your head - and possibly your bank balance - or your heart?

Amity Dry

Mummy bloggers and tales of woe

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What did whinging mums do before forums, Facebook, Twitter and blogs? Did they complain or just get on with it?

Double trouble or twice as nice?

Prue Corlette

Prue Corlette Most people love babies, but everyone, apparently, loves twins.

How a break from the kids helped me find myself again

Amity Dry

Amity Dry It was at about 4am I starting planning how I would get out of my flight to Melbourne that was boarding in three hours. Leaving my children for two days to go and visit The Block set had seemed like such a great idea at the time, but suddenly sleeping through the alarm that would go off any minute felt like a much better plan.

Battle of the sexes

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Four-month-old Canadian child Storm has created a real … storm, so to speak.

Regretting motherhood: What if the sacrifices are too great?

Amity Dry

Amity Dry Unsure if she wanted to become a mum, now or ever, Kasey Edwards embarked on a process of researching, investigating and option-weighing to decide whether becoming a mother was the right choice for her. Her book Thirty Something And The Clock Is Ticking is the result.

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An open letter to Pru Goward

Amity Dry

Amity Dry If you wanted to alienate every mother in Australia, mission accomplished! Your statement comparing Jackie O bottle-feeding her baby while walking across the road to Michael Jackson HANGING HIS BABY OVER A BALCONY was so absurd it had me wondering if it was a belated April Fools Day joke.

Amity Dry's Blog

Are you a self absorbed mummy?

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Amity Dry After all the controversy surrounding the Bonds Baby Competition, we ask the question: "are you a self absorbed Mummy"?

Amity Dry's Blog

Will men and women ever share the load in parenting?

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Amity Dry Are things equal in your home or does one spouse take the greater share? Are you happy with the arrangement or does it frustrate you?

Confessions of a co-sleeper

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Amity Dry I never thought I’d be a co-sleeper. In fact I vividly recall being pregnant with my first child and pronouncing that would never let my children get used to sleeping in bed with me. Yet here I am all these years later, doing the same thing. And kind of liking it.

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Doing it by the book - which do you love or hate?

Pregnant at work

Amity Dry Do you think we follow birth and/or parenting books to slavishly or would you be lost without them?

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Three's a crowd: how a baby changes a relationship

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Amity Dry When I was pregnant with my first child I was blissfully unaware of how much his arrival was going to affect the relationship I had with my husband.

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Controlled crying: For or against?

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Amity Dry I’m tired. After 5 months of broken sleep the fog of sleep deprivation is firmly setting in. And sleep deprivation can lead you to be a bit snappy.

Kylie Orr's blog

Does the perfect pram exist?

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Kylie Orr The paradox of modern baby buggies: so much choice yet so little to choose from.

Amity Dry's Blog

Loving your post-baby body

Kourtney Kardiashian

Amity Dry Forget what Hollywood says - the post-baby body is to be embraced, respected and can even be (gasp) sexy!

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Single mothers by choice

Mother and daughter

Amity Dry A few months ago I saw an interview with writer Louise Sloan, discussing her book ‘Knock Yourself Up.’ Louise is a single mum who, after finding herself 38 and childless, made the decision to take matters into her own hands and have a child through sperm donation.

Drug free childbirth

Labour drugs

Amity Dry When I gave birth to my baby girl three weeks ago I did it drug free. Does that make me a hero or a martyr?

Justice not served: Father blinds son and walks free

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Amity Dry In Adelaide last week a father who violently shook his newborn son hard enough to cause brain damage and blindness in both eyes avoided a jail term so that he can be a “father figure” to his son.

Amity Dry's Blog

Motherhood: all a matter of perspective

Tired mother

Amity Dry ‘Is motherhood really that hard?' asked TV reporter Jacinta Tynan in last weeks Sunday Life magazine, and in turn started a hot debate in online forums across the country. Not hard? Are you kidding me?

Motherhood - why it's worth it

Motherhood

Amity Dry With Mother's Day this weekend I thought motherhood could do with a little celebrating, a reminder of why we all love it, even on the days we say we don’t. Because if you, like me, have been reading the articles on parenthood posted on various sites throughout the last week you’d have to be asking yourself why anyone would be mad enough to want to take it on.

Dear baby, I want you out NOW

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Amity Dry I really REALLY want this baby out now. I am 39 weeks on Thursday and feel like I have been pregnant for about 4 years, with the final week looming like an unachievable hurdle I don’t have the strength to cross. And I am so grumpy and over it I can hardly stand myself.

Midwives and the new baby experience

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Amity Dry In my experience midwives really do make or break your new baby experience. And they can have a huge impact on how you feel about yourself as a mother in those first few days in hospital and sometimes even the weeks and months following.

And baby makes four

Baby and toddler

Amity Dry My son Jamison has had our undivided attention for four years, so it is going to come as a bit of a shock when he is not the sole focus of everyone anymore.

Are mothers' groups just high school all over again?

Parenting can be a cliquey game.

Kylie Orr Parenting can be a cliquey game. I had no idea until I tried to squeeze into that mould of a perfect parent and found myself hanging over the sides.

Eating and drinking while pregnant - are we too paranoid?

Pregnancy food

Amity Dry What is your attitude towards eating and drinking while pregnant? Did you take the risk with listeria foods? Did you continue to drink and, if so, how much? Do you think the guidelines are reasonable? And do you feel left out if you can't drink at social functions?

Has a midwife (or MCHN) ever made you cry?

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Kylie Orr Kind words, empathetic smiles, patient instruction and tender advice all got me through those vulnerable moments. Thankfully the great midwives outweigh the substandard ones.

If baby brain's a myth I have serious problems

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Amity Dry You scientific people may release your findings and get worldwide recognition of them, but us pregnant women know better. Our brains suck and we know it.

Am I having a boy or a girl?

Pregnancy

Amity Dry With not knowing the sex comes the chance to test out all the old wives tales that claim to predict what you are having.

Leave my belly alone

Pregnant

Amity Dry Too big or too small, we can’t win! From our size to our choices on breastfeeding, sleeping arrangements, parenting decisions and going back to work, it seems that everyone has an opinion and isn’t afraid to share it.

Answering tough questions from kids

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Amity Dry I always wanted to be one those parents who offered a well thought out and educational answer to my child’s questions, rather than a “Because I said so.” But, I have to admit, some of his questions lately have had me struggling.

The art of naming your child

Kylie Orr

Kylie Orr Kid's names' are such a source of anxiety, aren’t they? Some people are tight-lipped about their names, thinking it best not to offer them out there too early for fear of ridicule.

Amity Dry's blog

What it means to be a mum

Amity Dry

Amity Dry Being a mum is such a uniting force, it is the ultimate common ground. It doesn’t matter what your background is, what your current or previous career was, what your income, where you live or what your life choices are – once you’re a mum we are all inherently the same.

Should breastfeeders have priority seating?

Kylie Orr

Kylie Orr I needed to breastfeed my baby when out shopping this week. I went to the well equipped parents’ room only to find all three “private feeding booths” taken. Two of the three people were bottle-feeding their babies with the curtain open.

One child is just a toy

Kylie Orr

Kylie Orr I was listening to a psychologist on a radio program a few years ago, discussing number of children when a caller phoned in with the comment “One child’s a toy!” The host and guest had a good laugh. As the mother of one at the time, I was extremely resentful of such a remark.

A complete family or a complete dilemma?

Kylie Orr My mum tells me she wanted six children and my father wanted eight. They compromised and had four. Clearly, maths wasn’t their strong point.

Parents struggle for words

Karen Kissane in Kinglake The boys charge down the slide and manfully shovel sand with spades as long as they are. The big girls run around on top of the brightly coloured equipment and the little ones draw butterflies.

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Birth to six months

Congratulations on your new baby! There are lots of useful tips and information to be found here, and it is a great place to ask those questions that crop up through these early months.

Six months to 12 months

First foods, crawling, words. This next six months includes plenty of new things - you will find advice, tips and questions answered in this forum.

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Baby Growth Chart

Check your baby's length and weight for their age against the World Health Organization's standard growth charts for children aged 0-3 years.

Tot meets his heroes, falls apart with excitement

Two-year-old Quincy finished his potty training last week, and as part of his reward he was able to meet his idols.

Beautiful in our eyes: Georgia's story

I will never deny the fact that grief has a place when you give birth to a child who brings a set of circumstances very different to what you imagined. Because for nine months, I thought I knew my Georgie.

'It's been phenomenal': widower dad of quads thankful for support

There was nothing Erica and Carlos wanted more than a baby.

Vin Diesel names daughter after actor Paul Walker

The actor said there was "no other person" he was thinking about when he chose the name.

How midwives can help women who experience domestic violence

More than half of women who live with abusive partners experience violence during pregnancy.

Mum describes giving birth during Cyclone Pam

A new mother was told she must flee Port Vila hospital with her baby as Cyclone Pam bore down.

6 signs you're done having babies

There were a few signs I'm never going back to the land of maternity jeans, breast pumps and bassinets.

Marta Dusseldorp reveals breastfeeding cost her an acting job

Australian actress Marta Dusseldorp has revealed she was forced to withdraw from a Sydney Theatre Company production because a director did not approve of her breast feeding.

Female celebs (or their babies) with traditionally male names

Looking for a name that's a little bit different for a girl? Turn to names that have been traditionally used for males, as these celebs (or their parents) did.

'If you're anti-immunisation ... take a look at this picture of my son'

Greg Hughes is "an absolute shell of a man" as he and his wife Catherine struggle to come to terms with the loss of their newborn son Riley to whooping cough.

How an extrovert can raise an introvert

Introverts are often misunderstood as shy, and sometimes even rude. A timid child can be difficult to build rapport with, but it's important we nurture their sensitive natures.

Sheryl Sandberg's advice

'Choreplay': Help out at home to get more sex, Sandberg tells men

Forget foreplay. The new and improved route to intercourse is "choreplay" - it's good for your spouse, good for your house, and comes with the imprimatur of feminist du jour Sheryl Sandberg.

How to play with your baby

The first time your child learns a new skill at playtime is very exciting - for both you and your baby! Play is important to your child's development for a variety of reasons - here are some simple ideas for you to try at home.

I'm a single mother by choice

For me, being the best mother I can be means being a mum alone, at least for now. Thinking of my friends with inadequate partners, I wonder why more people don’t choose single motherhood.

Awkward wedding photos

Weird poses, surprise photobombs, bizarre editing: these are the wedding photos that should have never seen the light of day.

Four-week-old baby Riley Hughes dies of whooping cough

The mother of a four-week-old Perth baby who died after contracting whooping cough says her family has been left devastated by the loss of her "gorgeous, sweet" son.

Win a Ben & Holly's Little Kingdom prize pack

To celebrate the April 1 release of Holly's Magic Wand on DVD and Digital, we are giving away five DVD packs featuring the newest installment of Ben & Holly's Little Kingdom Holly's Magic Wand and many more hours of family entertainment! Enter Now!

Oh boy! Video shows family's reaction to baby surprise

Little Peyton Williams thought she was getting a baby sister named Charlee. But the two-year-old has had to settle for a doll dressed in pink after her baby "sister" turned out to be a boy.

How to help build up your baby's immune system

We all know that having a strong immune system is the best way to stay healthy – but what can we do to help it along?

'Nick, you need to call an ambulance': home birth mum's tragic death

A Melbourne mum who died after the home birth of her baby pleaded with her husband to call an ambulance because she felt she was going to die, the Victorian Coroners Court has heard.

When dads believe their baby doesn't 'like' them

Q: My two-month-old baby doesn't like me. He's perfectly content with my wife, but when I try to hold him, he gets upset and cries. I've backed off a little, thinking that he just needs a little time to get used to me, but that doesn't seem to be working. I'm starting to think I'm just not a very good dad. Is it too late for me to build a relationship with my baby?

When was the last time a stranger praised your parenting?

Wouldn’t it be great to get some nice feedback every now and then? After all, everyone likes to hear positive praise, particularly when it comes to parenting.

Special Ticket Offer, Save $8!

The Essential Baby & Toddler Show is back this April! Save $8 off the door price for a limited time only!

15 names on the verge of extinction

If you're looking to revive an older name, or don’t want anything near the top 1000 list, check out these rare monikers for your unique baby.

5 characteristics of great dads

It’s great to see a generation of dads who are more actively involved with caring, nurturing and loving their kids.

Why doesn't Australia have more breast milk banks?

When there’s no question that milk banks are important, why don’t we have more of them in Australia?

Carrie Bickmore announces birth of daughter

Television personality Carrie Bickmore has given birth to her second child.

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Sign up to our 30 days of #PlayIQ challenge

Sign up to receive 30 amazing tips and ideas for play with baby during the month of April and submit a picture or tip on our social wall for a chance to win an amazing Fisher-Price prize pack.

Man faces jail after giving woman abortion pill smoothie

A Norwegian man is facing jail after putting abortion pills in his ex-girlfriend's smoothie, causing her to have a miscarriage.

'He's a blessing': family of baby born without eyes

Jordy Jackson was born without eyes. He has anophthalmia, which affects one in every 100,000 babies born.

Win one of 5 Cadbury Easter Hampers

With Easter fast approaching, Cadbury are giving away 5 Cadbury Easter Hampers. Enter Now!

Super fit model Sarah Stage defends her pregnancy body

Model Sarah Stage has defended her pregnancy body after critics claimed her slim figure at eight-and-a-half months pregnant wasn't "normal".

Win a Ben & Holly's Little Kingdom and Peppa Pig prize pack

To celebrate the April 1 release of Holly's Magic Wand on DVD and Digital, Essential Baby and Entertainment One are giving away five bumper DVD packs featuring the newest installment of Ben & Holly's Little Kingdom Holly's Magic Wand and many more hours of family entertainment! Enter Now!

Why I post breastfeeding photos online

I love to take pictures of my children. In some of the pictures, my younger son is nursing.

The day I broke my baby

There are things I wish I didn't know. I wish I didn't know that companies make tiny braces, small enough to hold necks no bigger than a wrist.

The place just for dads of multiples

When a couple discovers they're expecting multiples, the dad can sometimes be almost forgotten in all the excitement and preparation. But one group offers a space just for dads of twins and higher-order multiples.

Brave mum calls for domestic violence law reform

A brave mum of two has shared details of the harrowing attacks she suffered at the hands of her partner in a bid to help other victims of domestic violence.

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30 days of #PlayIQ challenge

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