Jennifer Hawkins shares the highs and lows of her first year of motherhood

Picture: Instagram
Picture: Instagram 

Jennifer Hawkins has opened up about her first year with daughter Frankie, saying she loves her new "mummy life".

The model and television presenter spoke with Essential Baby about the joys of breastfeeding and the challenges of teething and overcoming fussy eating. 

The 36-year-old has recently signed on as an ambassador for Bubs Australia and shared her experiences of introducing solids to Frankie, saying at first she would refuse to eat anything but baby cereal. 

"She was a little bit fussy in the beginning, it's either the beginning or later, it happens at some point, right?!," she said.

"After that I would food prep and make my own purees with chicken and broccoli and I'd sometimes add in the (Bubs) pouches for variety.

"Now she's not super fussy, I'm lucky, she still has her fussy moments, but overall she'll try most things. She likes avocado, things like that, which is great. I was worried 'is she going to be fussy', but she's not too bad."

Another of her favourite foods is sand, with the bub happy to indulge on their regular beach visits. 

"What baby does not like sand? She eats handfuls. I didn't worry too much about it, my mum said to me it's good fibre, it will go through her!," she joked.

Hawkins also shared how she felt grateful to still able to continue to breastfeed Frankie, saying her goal had been to reach 12 months and she was now letting it take its natural course. 

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"I still breastfeed her three times a day, I also think that's good for vitamins," she told Essential Baby. "I feel very grateful to still be breastfeeding. I didn't know how I'd go. It's difficult in the beginning. But I'm still enjoying it and I'll still do it until she weans herself off."

"I don't know how we'll go (weaning). I always thought I'd get to 12 months, and then we got to 12 months and it was still fine, everything is still going smoothly so I thought let's go with it and see how things go. It's been so lovely."

Frankies recently celebrated her first birthday in what Hawkins described as one of the best weekends of her and husband Jake Wall's life, despite the added challenges of the pandemic.

"We had a beautiful gathering with family, I did the whole thing with little cupcakes and balloons, I fully decorated. Because of COVID we kept it to 20 guests, but we had a couple of little gatherings with friends."

"It was strange having to do it in a COVID safe way, but it was really beautiful. It was one the best weekends I've ever had. And she was really happy."

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Little Frankie girl. 🥰 Sand eating & repeat! #heartexposion

A post shared by Jennifer Hawkins-Wall (@jenhawkins_) on

While the first year has had it's 'ups and downs', Hawkins said she had never felt so fulfilled.

One of their biggest challenges has been teething, which had been particularly tough for Frankie who had several teeth erupt at once.  

"I'm absolutely loving my new mummy life. It's so fulfilling the love she gives back to me. It's so beautiful and she's a really affectionate little girl, it's really nice," Hawkins said.

"She has a pretty happy nature, but teething has been difficult. It's hard to see her in a lot of pain. Isn't teething tough! To see them go through that and you can't do anything. You just let them find their way.

"She had no teeth and then they all came down pretty much all at once just before her birthday, she got her two bottom ones and then just bang, bang, bang and now she has six. But it was kind of good to get it out of the way. But it was intense."

While it has been a quiet year for the family due to the pandemic, Hawkins said she had tried to find the upside to lockdowns and took the opportunity for some extra family time. 

"For us we were in a little baby bubble so it didn't hit us as hard. There was no pressure to get dressed up and go out to a café. And our house has a beautiful backyard, so we'd kind of hang out at home, just in a little baby bubble, so it didn't really matter.

Bubs Australia has just launched a new range of vitamins, Vita Bubs, aimed at babies and children from one month to 12 years, as new research from Bubs found many parents worry their children don't get enough vitamins in their diet.