15 years with Essential Baby: meet Therese

Therese has been a member of Essential Baby for 15 years and a moderator for eight.

Therese Simpson "Life has a funny way of giving you what you need when you need it the most."

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Born too early: Shea and Tainn's story

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Jannette Cass-Dunbar In Australia, around 57 babies are born prematurely (before 37 weeks) each day. EB member Jannette tells her story about her twin sons, who were born at 24 weeks.

'I could not be more proud of her': A mum's story of life with a child with ASD

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Erin Law Essential Baby member Erin Law is a mum of three. Her daughter Bailey has autism, and Erin has Asperger's Syndrome herself. A year after her diagnosis, and on World Autism Awareness Day, she shares her story.

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Feature member story: Emma and Big Dog Rescue

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As told to Nic Salinas Essential Baby member Emma Bigwood always loved dogs - and now she's making a difference by helping save the lives of many canines. She shares her story.

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Because of you: what we've learnt from our daughter with Down syndrome

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Julia Watson As part of Down Syndrome Awareness Month, we share a story from EB member Julia Watson, who has a daughter with Down syndrome. She recalls the ways her little girl has changed their family for the better ...

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Even though I've never met you, I couldn't do it without you

Mums group

Jane McKay Jane McKay signed up to the Essential Baby forum when pregnant with her first baby - but she didn't expect to make enduring friendships that would carry her through the highs and lows of motherhood.

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Feature member story: a gift for Chloe

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Nic Salinas Per gram, the infusions Chloe receives are worth more than gold, but for her and her family, the contents are truly priceless. Her mum shares why the gift of blood donation has given the family - and Chloe - a new life.

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Feature member story: My son's type 1 diabetes diagnosis

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Nic Salinas Kristy Watts is mum to a 14-year-old boy and lives in Adelaide, SA. This is the story of how her son was diagnosed with the potentially fatal disease type 1 diabetes.

James' brave battle

Gail and James

Gail Clark In February of this year our entire world crumbled down around us. My beautiful, healthy, strong five and a half year old son James was about to start the hardest fight of his life. He had just been diagnosed with liver cancer.

Feature member story: Feeding Aurora

Martina feeding Aurora

Nic Salinas Diagnosed with Noonan's Syndrome, Aurora Valentine Cunningham was sent to this Earth for only a very short time. Now, during World Breastfeeding Week, Aurora's mother Martina Kerr shares the battle she fought to ensure Aurora received her nourishing breastmilk, despite many obstacles.

Feature member story: Sophie's new liver

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Nic Salinas My name is Jo and I am Sophie’s Mum. Thanks to the life-saving gift she received, from the grieving parents of a child, we have our daughter back.

Our determined little Rose

Feature member story: Rose Thumb

Michelle Irvine Not many people know that babies can have strokes, even unborn babies.

What to expect when you are no longer expecting

Miscarriage

Jayne D'Arcy After my recent miscarriage, I felt that very little has been written about it - which is amazing as it's happening all the time.

FEATURE MEMBER

Don't pity me because my child has Down syndrome

Georgia Watson

Julia Watson Julia talks about the joy her children give her and dealing with Down syndrome and the last thing she ever wants is pity.

Feature member story: Surviving suicide

Surviving suicide

Nic Salinas I always thought when I wrote my story; it would be my journey through fertility problems and recurrent miscarriage, not one of losing a family member to suicide.

A touch of hope

After being told having a baby would be near impossible for me - falling naturally at 40 years old was a miracle and a dream come true.

Leearne Hynes After being told having a baby would be near impossible for me - falling naturally at 40 years old was a miracle and a dream come true.

Confessions of an Oprah fraud

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Essential Baby member Kat was an Oprah fraud, bemused she won the ticket lottery and unsure what all the fuss was about. But then she went to the show...

Gift of mobility for Bryce

Long-term EB member Lorraine Daley and her family had their wish granted this week - a wheel-chair friendly car to enable their terminally-ill son Bryce to leave the house and join on family excursions.

Feature member: Auskick family

Auskick family

Amber Robinson What is it like to be an Auskick family? EB member Jacqui Snelgar, whose son Matt has competed in three seasons of the AFL skills program.

Juliana Fridman

Juliana's Triplets

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Here is the collection of blogs from Juliana Fridman. She has documented her journey of falling pregnant, finding out they were expecting triplets. The trials of carrying a multiple pregnancy, and now the birth and after effects of emergency c-section & health difficulties of Juliana and one of her precious triplets.

Feature member

Being a ballet mum

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Deanne Duncombe EB member, Deanne's daughter, Erin wanted to be Angelina Ballerina. In her new pristine uniform Erin looked beautiful as I dropped her off for her first lesson. Not permitted to watch, I left her with complete strangers who belonged to a world unknown to us.

Losing my wife, my babies, my dreams...

Bernie

Nicole Salinas EB member Bernie lost his wife and unborn twin babies due to medical complications. Here he shares his tragic story.

Cooper's story

Essential Baby member Bronwyn with son Cooper.

Nicole Salinas When Cooper came into our world it changed everything. It turned our world upside down, it changed us, it changed our family. It was nothing we had expected, and nothing that we knew.

Mortgage free in four years

Feature member Natalie and her family

Nicole Salinas I clearly recall the day we decided to pay off our mortgage. My husband and I were sitting in the computer room with a cup of coffee and we were looking up the weather as we had decided to go to the snow for a day trip.

In nature's hands

Feature member Nicole with her sons Hugh and Julian

Nicole Salinas I was 28 and expecting my second child. All was well with the pregnancy and we were very excited to be adding to our family. So we were shocked when at our 20 week scan they found a mass so large it was displacing our baby's heart.

Twins times two

Feature member: twins times two

Nicole Salinas My name is Sam. I have four children under four. And, I have a confession to make. I’d love just ONE more. Essential Baby member Sam shares her story of life with two sets of twins.

Feature member: Costello syndrome

Feature member Nicola

Nicole Salinas Nicola suffers from a very rare genetic condition called Costello Syndrome. She is the 14th person to ever be diagnosed in Australia, and there are less than 300 people in the entire world that have the same condition.

Paige: Extra chromosome, extra special

Feature member Danni with her daughters

Nicole Salinas At my first obstetrician appointment, my doctor explained about the NT (nuchal translucency) scan and blood test and told me that I could have this test to see what my risk was for having a child with Down syndrome.

My large family: Love multiplies

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Anni Taylor The washing is stacked higher than superman flies, and nappy-changing has been in operation for the past 18 years. Laura shares the realities and many joys of having a family of 11.

Feature members

Our large families: EB members share

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With seven, eight and 10 children under their respective wings, Essential Baby members Leanne, Susan and Tanya offer an insight into their large families.

Feature member: Violet's story

Feature member Sarah and daughter Violet

Nicole Salinas Violet was born full term and it was devastating to hear after she was born, that she had been born with health problems.

Beating the odds - our premature arrival

Feature member Sharon and son Maxx

Nicole Salinas My husband Nathan and I started trying for our first baby in 2001. After 6 months and a lot of questions from me, I was diagnosed with polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS).

A son’s gift

A son's gift

Peter Dubiez Expecting a baby is such a precious gift and my wife, Kylie, and I were awaiting our first. Ultrasounds provide a unique opportunity for dads. For a dad, an ultrasound is our first bonding experience.

Genetic Factor Infertility: Our story

Male factor infertility: our story

Kirrily I had spent almost all my adult life to date falling pregnant, or getting over a pregnancy (as if it were an illness). Yet our home and hearts were still waiting to expand to let in just one special child.

Same-sex parenting: Our story

Feature Member July 09

Nicole Salinas Everyone’s definition of a “normal” family is different. We believe that children in general are very accepting and it’s the parent’s views that influence how other children will treat our son.

Karen's story

Adam in recovery at Westmead Childrens' Hospital.

Nicole Salinas "My 15-year-old son, Adam, has been in Westmead Childrens' Hospital since February 24 after being involved in an accident which left him with burns to 60% of his body. We were told it was very bad and to go home and pray.”

A beautiful but broken heart

Ky and Mark and their children Daniel and Bella.

Nicole Salinas Scratch just below the surface and you will find a family who is grieving the loss of three children.

Ghania's blog

The accident

EB blogger Ghania Dib

Ghania Dib I was in a state of complete shock. But even then, with the world spinning crazily and darkness threatening to engulf me, I knew that I had managed to do the most important thing - ensure both the safety of myself and that of my child.

Homeschooling: Our story

Cody and Heidi doing a Science experiment for 'school'

Nicole Salinas We took our seven-year-old son out of school at the end of third term last year after seeing him becoming increasingly unhappy at school and his behaviour disruptive and uninvolved. EB member and Mum Cindy shares her experience of home-schooling.

My VBAC Story

Anne Anne shares the experience of her traumatic first birth and her successful attempt at a vaginal birth after caesar (VBAC) to deliver her second child.

Liz's VBA2C story

Liz My third child was born after a successful vaginal birth after two caesars (VBA2C) - drug and intervention free at the local public hospital.

Angela's VBAC story

Angela I was just so happy and so proud of myself, not just for having a VBAC but for being able to be in control of my birth experience.

Features archive

My baby was born with no thumbs

Baby Sienna was born with no thumbs.

Katherine Moffett I always dreamed of having two children. A boy and a girl. Perfect, a pigeon pair as some may say. I married the love of my life. We welcomed our first child into the world in 2005, our beautiful son Kobe and our second child Sienna, a little girl in 2008.

My two sons' anaphylaxis

Feature member May 2009

Nicole Salinas My two gorgeous sons have a life threatening type of allergy called anaphylaxis. It's a very severe form of allergic reaction that must be treated as a medical emergency requiring immediate treatment and urgent medical attention.

Schooling through Steiner

Choosing Steiner Education

Nicole Salinas In two years, my bouncy child had become withdrawn, clingy and competitive. She started comparing herself to others—a strategy common in schools focused on producing academic achievers.

A motherless Mothers' Day

EB blogger Ghania Dib

Ghania Dib It wasn’t until I became a mother that I really understood the significance of mother’s day. Unfortunately, that mother’s day – my first – turned out to be mum’s last. And it breaks my heart to know that I didn’t get to share it with her.

The greatest of hurdles: Sophie Smith shares her story

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Tracey Spicer, One2OneConversations Sophie Smith is a person whose story any person can relate to. Sophie faced the greatest of hurdles, loss and tragedy, yet her defiance, her courage; her practicality in each and every circumstance provides us all hope.

Post-natal depression: an interview with Katie Brown

Tracey Spicer, One2OneConversations Katie Brown is a journalist, yoga teacher, infant massage practitioner and mother of three. Her tumultuous journey through work, motherhood and post natal depression has become a book, aptly titled “Mother Me”.

Asperger's - through adult eyes

Feature member Cherry

Nicole Salinas Asperger syndrome is an autism spectrum disorder, each individual a different ‘colour’ in the spectrum. Essential Baby member, mother and wife Cherry shares her experience.

It's three for me

EB blogger Ghania Dib

Ghania Dib As a mother of young children, I am frequently asked by friends, relatives and even strangers if I will have another child. I was often asked the question after I had just had my first child, shortly after having my second child and again, shortly after having my third.

Forums

Feature Member forums

Chat with other EB members about the Feature Member stories you've read.

Famous mums

WDYT?

One of the most popular sections of the EB forum, 'What do you think?' gives parents a chance to discuss a wide range of topics. Have your say!

Jane Kennedy is EB's Mum in Profile

.. and is mum to 5! - read hers and other famous mums stories here

Mumtrepreneurs

Working mums

Be inspired by Australian mums who have created their own businesses.

Blogger stories

My story - the unexpected journey to have another baby

This time, however, things didn’t go quite as smoothly. This time I would come to learn just how hard it can be to make, and keep, a baby.

Photo Galleries

Essential Baby Feature Members - Life Stories

Meet Essential Baby's Feature Members: amazing people who have travelled incredible journeys. They share their inspirational experiences: EB feature member stories.

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!

Finding baby name inspiration in unusual places

Sometimes the greatest baby name ideas come from the most unexpected places, as these EB members show.

The case for inducing at 37 weeks

While we often think of pregnancy as a 40 week affair, experts agree that 37 weeks is actually “full term". So is there an argument for inducing all births at 37 weeks?

Does controlled crying really work?

Controlled-crying techniques may help some babies sleep through the night, but for many exhausted new parents, it's just a recipe for more tears all round.

How I taught my infant to use a toilet

As people become more aware of these benefits, I hope more parents will practice this method, so we can cut down on nappies and improve baby bonding.

'I thought it was impossible': Emily Symons pregnant at 45

Aussie actress Emily Symons has announced she is pregnant with her first baby.

Shallow water blackout kills fit, healthy dad

A little girl will grow up without her father after the fit and healthy 34-year-old passed away while doing something he had practised his whole life.

Afternoon naps may be bad for toddlers' sleep

You could be doing yourself a disservice by encouraging your toddler to have an afternoon nap, according to new research.

Best gifts for newborns, new mums and christenings

We've compiled a guide to some of the most popular presents for newborns and new mums, and for christenings and naming days.

Jaime King to be a mum again

Actress Jaime King is pregnant with her second child, giving 16-month-old James a sibling.

Nannies should receive government funding

The Abbott government should extend funding to nannies, and direct childcare payments to low and middle income families, a landmark study on childcare has found. 

Common skin irritations in newborns (and how to treat them)

As many as one in two newborn babies suffer from skin irritations in their first few weeks. So what are the most common rashes and irritations to look out for?

10 wall decals for the nursery or playroom

Wall decals are the answer to creating a beautiful nursery or children's space without lifting a paint brush, a spirit level or even a hammer.

Preschooler walks 2.4km home alone

Three-year-old Cain Trainor headed off home after his first day at a new preschool without telling anyone.

Video: Why mums get nothing done

In spite of being in an almost constant state of motion while looking after the kids and trying to keep things together at home, it can seem as though parents have managed to get nothing on the to-do list done by the end of the day.

The middle name game

The middle name is no longer an afterthought, and parents' inspiration comes from many places.

Have a baby or your money back - but there's a catch

A new IVF scheme offers couples the chance to fall pregnant and give birth - or get their money back. But there's more to it than you might think.

A rare glimpse inside the womb

A baby born still inside the amniotic sac gave US doctors a rare glimpse at life inside the womb.

Battered mum forced to write to her attacker ex in jail

Three years ago Jason Hughes viciously attacked his ex-partner. Now she has to write to him three times a year.

Woman pleads not guilty to ultrasound scam

A West Australian woman will fight allegations that she scammed expectant mums by selling them fake ultrasound pictures of babies.

Download now: Essential Kids Activity Finder app

Got bored kids? Quickly find the best activities for kids wherever you are in Australia with the Essential Kids app.

Forum

Feature Member Forum

Visit the Feature Member forum to discuss any of the stories here.

My Work

Working parents

News articles and practical advice on the working lives of Australian parents - from changes to maternity leave laws to the juggle of getting to work on-time without cereal smeared on your work trousers.

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What's hot on EB

Brain damaged mum receives compensation

A Sydney mother who suffered brain damage when she was hit by a car while pushing her newborn baby in a pram has reached a confidential out-of-court settlement with the driver's insurance company.

Indigenous midwives break down the barriers

A culturally sensitive midwifery service has gained the trust and respect of Aboriginal women.

The Katering Show's next big delivery

Most mums-to-be plan to take things easy and perhaps have a little break from work as the birth of their baby draws near. Not Kate McCartney.

53 creative pregnancy announcements

Announcing that you're expecting can be a time to express your creativity, sense of humour and imagination. Check out how other parents and parents-to-be have broken the news to friends and family.

Why I have mixed feelings about Cindy Crawford's leaked photo

Last week an un-retouched photo of model Cindy Crawford surfaced, showing the 48-year-old mother-of -two posing in underwear.

How to create a Peppa Pig pancake

Thought your toddler could not love pancakes any more than they already do? How about if the breakfast treat came in the shape of every two-year-old's favourite cartoon character?

'It's a little life, not a little loss': pregnancy after miscarriage

I thought I was never going to be able to have a successful pregnancy. I decided that I wasn't going to form an emotional attachment with this baby.

Bonds Baby Search 2015: what you need to know

February 18 marks the start of one of the most prolific annual baby competitions in Australia: the Bonds Baby Search. And this year is going to be more special than ever.

Who will manage your Facebook account when you're gone?

This is not something that people like to talk about, but Facebook has announced that it will grant users more control over what happens to their pages after they die.

Struggling mum of four wins $188 million

Mother of four Marie Holmes was financially struggling after quitting her jobs at Walmart and McDonald's in order to care for her children.

Win a KitchenAid Mixer

Let's celebrate 300,000 fans on Facebook

To celebrate, and to thank our amazing fans, we’re giving away a KitchenAid Artisan Tilt-Head Stand Mixer.