What do all Mums want? It’s really very simple: – SLEEP! Really and truly this is it, because once the little darlings come along sweet dreams become the biggest luxury of them all. Here are a few simple ways to give her what she wants – and to improve the sleep she gets.
1. Remove all electronic devices from Mum’s bedroom, especially her phone, iPad, computer, TV and everything else. The blue light that electronics emit is getting more and more attention as the barer of bad things in the mainstream press so keep the bedroom for sleeping and leave the texting, emails and social media for daylight hours. She will thank you for it when she gets a good night sleep – it’s not called beauty sleep for nothing. Replace the iPad on the bedside table with a pretty orchid and a couple of good books – poetry never fails Auden: Poems (Everyman’s Library Pocket Poets)
along with a good novel, The Goldfinch and perhaps something lighter, like a book from her childhood,The Secret Garden (Puffin Classics).
2. Make Mum a herbal tea just before bed. Camomile tea helps aid sleep – put the kettle on and make her a cup, preferably as she puts her feet up and unwinds from a busy day. I love Tea Pigs and I’m super excited that you can now buy their wonderful tea here in America (Before I would rely on Charlotte to bring me back a selection from the UK). Buy a selection of herbal teas, including camomile, from Tea Pigs – decaffeinated of course and find a fine bone china tea cup for her night-time cuppa – this can be a thrift shop or an antique store find or you can buy her a special cup on line – my favorite is the Roy Kirkham Redoute Rose Breakfast Cup and Saucer.
3. Make her a lavender bag to place under her pillow or in her nightie drawer. The floral scent will aid sleep. An added bonus is that it will keep the moths and scorpions away! I bought a large bag of lavender buds for the filling from Keys Creek Lavender Farm and I am making up little bags and pillows using Liberty print Tana Lawn. You can also make an eye mask, place it in the freezer and place the cold lavender mask over Mums eyes to help her relax. [This is one of our A Thousand Things that I am working on with the children – I will be sure to post the outcome very soon.]
4. Take away the alarm clock and let her sleep in. Giving mum a lie-in, so she doesn’t have to get up and make breakfast for the family, check the baby or even walk the dog, is such a great gift. Once she’s been able to wake up slowly, bring her a simple breakfast in bed, a cup of coffee, a slice of toast and homemade marmalade and some berries, on a customized tray – Mums like nothing more than something they can use that’s been given their child’s touch. On a liner that is just smaller than the tray draw her a picture, write her a special poem or just tell her how much you love her – have it laminated at a local printing store – Kinkos or Staples – and then place this inside the tray with the breakfast in bed on top. This pastel drawing, by Minty when she was in Kindergarten, is one of my most treasured pictures and it would make the perfect tray liner.
5. Get out the feather dusters, the rags and the vacuum and give Mum’s bedroom a really thorough cleaning. This one’s a twofer – removing any dust will help her sleep better at night and as a bonus it means one less household chore for mum. A great way to improve sleep is investing in an air purifier – Rabbit Air MinusA2 (model SPA-700A covers 700 sq. ft.) Ultra-Quiet Air Purifier. I was rather skeptical when Didier brought this home but it instantly improved the quality of my sleep.
6. Make a dreamcatcher with and for Mum. Rather like the journey’s the thing it’s not just about the finished homemade item it’s the memories you create as you make it. I found easy to follow instructions on Spoonful and I’m going to buy some white feathers, white string and some hoops to do this fun crafting project with Minty and Remy this weekend. We will let you know how we get on. I’m using all white so it will not only look great it will be calming too.
7. Buy Mum some aromatherapy bath oils – lavender, almond, rose, vanilla and camomile are all relaxing scents – I’m a sucker for Jo Malone – my favorite perfume for the longest time was Orange Blossom but I’ve weaned myself off it on to the Peony and Suede Blush – heavenly. I’m loving the red roses diffuser in my office and could imagine it would be delicious as a lovely warm bath before bed – ease Mum into a goodnight’s sleep feeling pampered and loved.
Thank you to Mums everywhere, sweet dreams to all the wonderful mothers, grandmothers, aunts and cousins – women the world over who nurture and mother us – but most importantly sweet dreams to my mum because obviously I think she’s the best mother ever.