Sadie Baby Blog
So what are the benefits of soft soles?
Soft sole shoes are unique as they allow your child to extend their toes and grip the floor as if they were walking barefoot. Soft sole shoes can also help improve their balance and coordination as they grow.
As little feet develop, they require a full range of motion, to allow there muscles and tendons to stretch, strength and grow. Soft soles allow children to move the way there body was intended, while still providing adequate protection.
How long should my child wear soft soles?
Both my daughters are only little pint size pocket rockets, if you have read our about us you will know Sadie has a rare form of dwarfism. Maggie is of average height but takes after her mum's gene's and is petite. I would recommend you have your little one in soft soles for as long as possiable. I do always have 'park shoes' for rough play outside, these do consist of a hard more structed sole. (Not yet available at Sadie Baby). However when we are shopping, coffee, spending time wtih friends we are in our soft soles, my girls will wear soft soles until they move up to the hard sole range. Sadie has only just moved up to a size 5, which was the reason behind the new hard sole size range. At four Sadie is now eager for the hard soles. Maggie now 18 months is still wearing our size 4, but will be moving to a size 5 soon, I plan to keep her in our soft soles until size 6, as her feet are still developing. Our soft soles are extremely durable, Sadie & Maggie both get extensive wear, Sadies has used her soft soles and breaks on her scooter and these shoes have been passed down to Maggie.
I recommend soft soles for as along as possiable, for the best development opportunity for your little ones feet.
When should my little one start wearing hard soles?
My recommendation is that once your little one moves in the hard sole range, its time. However as mentioned above it is best for soft soles for as long as possiable.
Without a doubt I love shopping online, the ease of searching for something, having it appear before my eyes on my phone, then on my door step with just a few clicks.... #amazing! But, that doesn't mean its always simply and easy, nor that I have made the best choices. After leaning this, there are three simple steps I take before buying online.
1. Facebook page, reviews. I love seeing what other customers have to say about the companies they buy from. They don't have to have a five star rating, but this is an excellent way of seeing what other customers might think.
2. Ask.... I love hearing from you guys, and any business owner will too. If you are unsure about size, shipping time etc I can help, just ask. This allows us the opportunity to connect with our customers, become aware of questions or gaps that might need to be answered and it can also give us inspiration for something new!
3. Buying! One of my best recommendations is try. If you think to yourself 'I want it all' stop, just try one thing first. Buy one item - check the quality, make sure it works for you, and hey if it does, go back again. Second time round, free shipping over a $ value, well spend it.
I hope these helpful little hints help with you're future online shopping.
Layla is almost one and currently her foot length is 11cm long. Layla wears our size AU 3 (6-12 months). Which is the perfect size for her foot length, a little room to grow without being too small or big. The leather is so soft, so it doesn't rub or mark her little toes or feet, even without socks or tights. The little buckle makes it easy to slide her foot in and out.
Are you looking for a one stop newborn shop? Then this shop is for you, from wraps, topknots, bibs, cot sheets and more, this divine business has things for expecting mums of boys or girls, or the surprise... its a....
Snuggle Hunny Kids featured below see there full range of Baby Top Knot Headbands.
At the end of the last year, I snooped my sister-in-laws book shelf, looking for inspiration and something new to read. I found two books which caught my attention and I enjoyed reading, Slow living by Brooke McAlary(loved this book, so easy to read and #mumsinpiration #gettingorganised) and Low Tox Life by Alexx Stuart.
There is a lot in the Low Tox Life book and I might be completely behind the times, but if you read my goals for 2019 it was to be a 'better recycler' this was my inspiration. I have slowly when the occasion has arisen made active changes to my life, and when the girls body wash started to finish I really wanted to find something as natural as possible & supportive of Australian based business. No Nasties, is Sunshine Coast owned, with the slick kids range being made from Native Australian extracts & made in New Zealand. I am so very excited to add this range to our collection, and I hope you love it as much as I the girls have.
We have been using the Hair & Body Wash, which smells amazing! We use the detangler after every wash (which has even mentioned to keep the nots out during a swim in the pool) the bio-degradable Tail Comb, which has been perfect addition to help with pulling Sadie's hair up (particular for Ballet) and the slick kids hair gel, which is a light hold perfect for baby hair & fly aways.
I'll admit I had always thought I would/wanted three boys. When I fell pregnant with Sadie, my mum said without a shadow of a doubt I was having a girl, and well she was RIGHT! I guess mums always know best, hehe. With Maggie, I knew she was a girl, my husband was convinced it was a boy, and for a little while he had me thinking 'it could be a boy', but a wager was made, dinner duty for a week, the results are in, girls rule high & mighty in this home.
Being a girl mum is more then I could have ever dreamed of, and if I was so blessed to have baby number three another beautiful girl would make this mumma one happy lady.
We absolutely love seeing are shoes are styled with Australian Handmade. These photos have been done by @our_small_adventures they feature our Rose suede 'London' shoes. I am excited to bring you some exclusive discount's.
I have followed Stacey and her beautiful business Parker Tee and Co from the beginning of Sadie Baby, she creates the most breathtaking Lux baby bib's. (I may just have a couple of these gorgeous bibs myself) They are made from high quality fabric and quaint finishing details, these gorgeous bibs make an ideal gift for a new mum and her baby, and our favourites are Juniper and Lavender.
Head to her website and use code word: sbfavs for 30% off your purchase.
Love discovering new handmade businesses and this one is stunning, Talaria create a beautiful collection limited edition dresses made for little girls, available in size 1 to 6 the dresses are made from a curated selection of beautiful textiles. Timeless pieces that can be passed down from daughter to daughter, or kept to passed down from mother to daughter. Have a look at the new Winter Magic collection, my favourites are the Enchanted Garden & Gold Linen. Use code word: sbfavs for 20% off this Australian Handmade business.
Twinkle Star Designs, another one of my favourite stores for luxe, functional & timeless pieces, their clothing is unique designed for girls who love stand out from the crowd. A combination of bright and simple fabrics, this gorgeous label will not disappoint, the collection of skirts is divine, so girly, I just love it. They also stock the most divine selection of tights and knee high socks that are perfect to complement our shoes for the warmer weather. Use code word: sbfavs for 15% off your purchase.
Wildflower the Label, sustainable, ethical, natural and unique handmade clothing made in Western Australia. The label features Australian vintage and Boho inspiration and there is something for bub, boys, girls and mum. The Wynter dress (available in size 1 to 10) & Kai Romper in grey (which can be seen in the gorgeous draw above, available in newborn to size 3). Use code word: sadiebabyfriends at check out for 15% off.
This is where my journey began. With this news and any other news about your child, your parent, your friend... or even about you... the journey begins here.
This is where we all veer off in different directions. How we handle the news and every day forward after that is what makes the story our own.
And with that said... here is my letter. It is written for an average height mama and daddy who just found out their baby has dwarfism. It is a letter I wish I had eight months ago. It is a letter that we can all learn from.
I know. The word "dwarfism" is sitting in your throat like a lump that cannot be swallowed. I know. The sentence that informed you life would be different has been repeated over and over again in your mind like a broken record. I know. Your visions of the future are now blurry, vague and even scary. I know. You feel like you just got pushed into a new world that is very different from your own. I know. You fear judgement. You fear ridicule. You fear different. I promise, I know.
This is what I will tell you... take a deep breath. Like a really, really deep breath where you get all that extra air out of your lungs with a 10 second exhale. Let yourself feel what you need to feel. Grieve the baby that you imagined if you need to. Cry and sob and cry some more. And then repeat after me, "Everything is going to be ok." Say this often. Say it out loud. Say it into the mirror. Say it to your spouse. Say it enough until you start to believe it. Because... everything really is going to be ok. I promise.
I understand because I was in your shoes. I am an average height mama married to an average height man with an average height two year-old. The word "dwarfism" wasn't even on my radar. Until, I received the news at 33 weeks pregnant, that my baby girl would be born with achondroplasia. And I was sad. I was worried. I was scared. I understand because I was in your shoes.
And those feelings are natural... and expected. And receiving news that your baby will be different is hard.
But, I want to tell you something. Something I figured out pretty quickly... hard doesn't always mean bad. I knew this would be a journey for our family. I knew it would change us and force us to open our minds. I knew it would cause us to take a good look in the mirror and do some real soul searching. No, those things aren't bad... just hard. But isn't anything worth attaining require some sweat and tears? Hmmmm... yes, I believe that to be true.
What I know now that I didn't know then: this journey would be the best thing that has ever happened to us. To me. To our family. I allowed this journey to change me... to be better... to teach and lead by example... to make a difference... and I now consider myself one of the lucky ones. It's kind of like that free "go to the head of the line" pass or the shortcut through the jolly jungle (or whatever it's called) in Candyland. Well in this case, you get the shortcut to happiness if you allow yourself to understand how truly lucky and blessed you are. And I will tell you something my doctor told me on the day he told me the news... "In a year from now, you will wish nothing is different." Trust me, when I first heard him say that I had a jaw-dropping, "What?!?" look on my face. I thought, "Why would I ever think that?" Well, I think it. And I am hoping you do too.
I remember the questions... so many questions. I remember googling. And it was too much information, too difficult to read and sort through it and make sense of it all. It was overwhelming. Just know this... yes there are some increased risks with each type of dwarfism. Choose an awesome doctor and an even better geneticist and come with your questions in hand. And repeat, "Everything is going to be ok." And if you do get overwhelmed... take a step back and just focus on one day at a time. Keep your thoughts positive and the rest will follow.
Now when I think of my daughter, I think of her personality above anything else. Yes, she is tiny. Strangers kindly remind me this everyday and I smile and secretly thank God one more time for making her the way He wanted her. But her tininess is just one of the many words used to describe her. She is spunky. She is determined. She is smiley. She is a mover and a shaker and I already know, she is going to do big things. I have never seen so much ambition to do more, see more, be more in a seven-month old baby. She loves life and I love that about her.
And so, my friend... do not be afraid or scared of your bright future. You will come to see that different is so beautiful. For if you had my perspective of time and a little bit of experience... you too would see that things are just as they should be. And life is oh so sweet. Your baby may be little... but never underestimate little. Now, when I see a tiny little ant carrying 50 times his own weight... I get it. You don't have to be big to live big. Please teach this to your child. To your family. To your community.
Lastly, congratulations on your new baby (or toddler or however old your child may be). Take advantage of this journey and take time at every step to really get the most out of each lesson, each moment, each opportunity to grow in the depths of your character. And when you stumble, repeat, "Everything is going to be ok." But really, just between us... it is going to be way better than ok. It is going to be incredible.
I have decided to tell the story of how we came to know about Floyds’ diagnosis. I now look back and I’m almost ashamed that I felt this way. This is not intended to offend anyone it is just how we felt at the very beginning and is the truth about our emotions, laid out in the raw.
What a beautiful little angel we have who is healthy and happy and the light of our lives.
It was so easy for us to pretend that the doctors may have been wrong, because for 5 months our little boy was just like any other baby, he giggled, he cried, he grew, he changed, he had doctors appointments and midwife checkups, he was not any different from any other baby. No one said anything to us until we went to them saying “he has a lot of rolls, do you think that is normal for a bubba of his age”?
The first tests came through the radiology department and these were full body X-rays. This frightened me so much because I didn’t want to know what these results could confirm. We were advised that this needed to be done and poor little Floydy had to be held down as they took X-rays, for every part on his whole body.
I kept saying “this is enough, no more,” but they needed them all. He cried and so did I. Then wait then began. At this point I was still convinced that they were wrong about it all.
There were a few things I did that didn’t help the process at all. I consulted Dr google. I typed in his symptoms and the remarks the doctor had made.
Large head, short legs and short arms. Well that was a mistake. Major mistake. When i saw the words words Achondroplasia (dwarfism) my heart sank, my body started shaking, my eyes welled up and I was in shock.
Floyd, having Achondroplasia, was not all I was worried about. A large part of the initial weight I felt was due to the medical complications that had been described in some cases. You see Dr Google notes every single possible complication that a child with Achondroplasia could have. Google research allowed me to reason with my limited knowledge of Floyds’ personal situation. The information I came across using this manner of research described health issues and complications that at this stage, I presumed, would affect every child diagnosed with Achondroplasia.
I didn’t know any one who had Dwarfism. This condition, I thought, was genetic and passed on through the family. I had no idea average height parents could give birth to a child with Achondroplasia. Questions flooded my thoughts, how did they not pick this up at birth, why me? and the always present, constant response to my reasoning self , No,no,no.. This can’t be true, its not in our family, it’s not possible.
The thoughts I had, took me to so many depths. What are the health complications, social issues, would he live the life I had envisioned for him?
While waiting for the tests each day and night seemed harder, I would wake to feed Floyd and my mind would sink back and run away with my thoughts, I was so scared.
Ross was the same, each time I fed him at night I would crawl back into bed so tired and weary and I would see Ross wide eyed and awake, he would cuddle me and my heart would sink and we would both just lay there for hours within our own thoughts, not speaking and absolutely heartbroken. We were both so sad for our little boy. We were scared for the future. We just didn’t know.
Our peadiatrician called me 4 days later at 6pm. I had been waiting for his call and was desperate to speak to him. He asked if I had heard of Achondroplasia. I remember falling to my knees, I couldn’t speak, I couldn’t cry, I couldn’t breathe.
At that point it was such a hard word to hear. I had a feeling by then that he possibly had Achondroplasia but I hoped with every inch of my being that this was not the case. I called my sister immediately and cried down the phone with tears flowing down my cheeks “he has it, he has it” and then I broke down. She immediately came over and she found me lying on the bed looking at Floyd and together we all just cried, in that moment, we were silent.
Ross was working such long hours before Christmas and we had spoken about it briefly but for some reason we both didn’t really talk about it too much. It was like if we spoke about it, it was true. Ross in particular was in a lot of denial about the whole process so we just pretended that it could not be true. I remember when I told him he didn’t really say a word, I knew he thought they were wrong and because it’s just so rare and even the paediatrician wasn’t sure, it was easy to ignore it.
That night was probably the worst night of our lives and it was of course sleepless like many before it. Full of silence, we were both so low that we couldn’t even comfort each other. I wanted Ross to tell me they were wrong, that everything was ok with our little boy, that we were going to be ok but he just couldn’t. Ross was a shadow of the man I knew. He was in deep thought and his devastation was so apparent that there was no consoling it.
We met the doctor on Friday afternoon. He sat us down and it felt like he was reading from a text book, he had never done this before. He ran through all the complications that someone with Achondroplasia could have. Telling us the worst possible complications as to not mislead us. He didn’t mention that many children with this are not affected health wise. After he ran through the ‘text book’ I asked him if he had seen this before and he said 20 years ago and then proceeded to tell us not to shoot the messenger if Floyd did not have Achondroplasia. What the… I thought. Why don’t they know. The next step was the Geneticist.
The lead up to seeing the geneticist was a pretty full on week.
There were two very memorable times during this whole process that I was at my absolute lowest point. The first was the day after we had consulted the pediatrician and he had confirmed his suspicions. Ross had a preplanned night booked with his dad and brother to have dinner. I had asked him to stay home with me but then I changed my mind and felt like he needed the time to talk with his family about what was happening.
He left at around 6pm and immediately I delved into the deepest depression that I had ever been in. I piled Floyd into the pram and walked, I didn’t stop, I called my sister and I was inconsolable. I remember yelling “Is this real”.. She grabbed her running shoes and ran straight out the door and met me on the path. When I saw her I immediately cried the most gut wrenching cry that I had ever released. I voiced every single fear, worry and utmost devastation to her, we walked and walked and we cried and cried together, we would look at Floyd every couple of minute’s and he would stare at us with his beautiful big eyes as if to know that there was something wrong, that his mummy was sad, that he knew to be calm and he just lay there as content as ever, like he was saying to me ‘I’m ok mum’.
The second low point was 2 days later, it was Monday morning and Ross had 5 days left of work before the Christmas break and was doing 15hr shifts. I woke up from another sleepless night and I was so tired, not just physically but emotionally.
There were not many people who knew about our situation but I had confided in a really good friend of mine, Kristy who also happens to be a close neighbor. She messaged me saying, ‘are you ok’. I immediately wrote back “I need you” she was at my house soon after. I walked down the stairs with Floyd in my arms, still in my pajama’s and was at my worst.
I remember putting him down, we sat on the couch and I sobbed in her arms, I cried for my little angel. I thought this is not fair, how has this happened. She just sat there and listened and together we cried.
The morning of our geneticist appointment was one that was full of anxiety. Ross had yet to shed a tear about what was happening, not because he wasn’t sad but because it was hard for him to let go. His brother came over to say hello and offer his support, and this is when Ross finally broke down. This was the first moment that he had really let go of his emotions. He was so scared as was I.
1 week later Ross and I found ourselves sitting in the geneticist office at the Royal Children’s hospital in Brisbane, tears streaming down my face. The geneticist had just told us, Floyd, our son, had Achondroplasia. He had ‘Dwarfism’.
To us, it felt very insensitive in the way the Drs disclosed this information to us. “Go home and have a great Christmas and New Year because your little boy is happy and healthy” they remarked. I remember thinking “are you serious”!?
You have just told us our 5 month old baby boy has a very rare condition that only 1-25,000 children are born with and your telling me to have a good Christmas!
I now reflect back to that day and think, what the Dr told us was right. Floyd is happy and healthy.
Floydy is a little boy who will have the most perfect life.
We’d just visited a whole hospital dedicated to children and I’m sure that each month the Drs in this hospital see hundreds of much loved children, some with life threatening illnesses. From our Drs perspective, Floyd and his condition, was a preferred diagnosis, in place of many others.
After we got past the initial shock of it all we started to put it into perspective. It was a very hard process but as soon as we released our video the healing began. We were excited for the future. We realised that everything will be ok, that Floyd-Henry is a blessing and a gift and we love him just the way he is.
The outpour of support from our family and friends was so amazing. The messages, the letters, the love, compassion and excitement for our future was our magic healing potion.
Finally we were smiling again and we couldn’t be happier with the beautiful little boy that we created.
I remember one lovely mum writing to me from America and she said that one day you will remember this time and won’t believe that you even shed a tear for your little Floyd-Henry. I don’t honestly feel this way just yet but we are well on our way.
Check out there incredible video
Firstly, I want to talk a bit about the physical differences that Leo will have. A baby with Achondroplasia has a relatively long, narrow torso with short extremities (arms and legs) and a disproportionate shortening of the upper segments of the limbs. There is a typically large head with prominence of the forehead (frontal bossing), underdevelopment of the midface with cheekbones that lack prominence, and a low nasal bridge with narrow nasal passages. The fingers appear short and the ring and middle fingers may diverge, giving the hand a trident appearance. Most joints can extend more than normal. For example, the knees can hyperextend beyond the normal stopping point. These differences will become more apparent as Leo grows. While he has some features that are similar to his brother, he has his own unique look that we absolutely adore. And can we all just look at that little button nose! It is so kissable.
I’ve mentioned in previous posts that achondroplasia comes with some medical implications. We try hard not to get too caught up with this as it can get very over whelming, but at the same time it is important to be educated about them as there are things that we need to monitor.
Health problems commonly associated with achondroplasia include episodes in which breathing slows or stops for short periods (apnea), obesity, and recurrent ear infections. In childhood, individuals with the condition usually develop a pronounced and permanent sway of the lower back and bowed legs. Some affected people also develop abnormal front-to-back curvature of the spine and back pain. A potentially serious complication of achondroplasia is spinal stenosis which is a narrowing of the spinal canal that can pinch (compress) the upper part of the spinal cord. Spinal stenosis is associated with pain, tingling, and weakness in the legs that can cause difficulty with walking. Another uncommon but serious complication of achondroplasia is hydrocephalus, which is a buildup of fluid in the brain in affected children that can lead to increased head size and related brain abnormalities.
Leo is a very healthy and happy baby so we consider ourselves very lucky. However, because we know how important it is to monitor these potential issues we do take extra precautions. Leo is currently sleeping with a sleep apnea monitor. This is just a little sensor pad that is taped to his stomach and attached to a small machine. It sets off an alarm if his breathing stops for an extended amount of time. The alarm has never gone off so that is a good sign. We have also done an at home oximetry test. This was to check how his oxygen levels are while he is sleeping. Soon we will need to go up to Starship Hospital to complete an official sleep study. This is a more intense version of the home test that we did. He will be hooked up to a number of machines and the doctors will watch him all night to assess his breathing. We, along with our paediatrician are also keeping a close eye out for various symptoms of spinal stenosis. At some point Leo will need to have an MRI to check for this. This is something that I am feeling particularly uncomfortable about. Mainly because of the fact that he will most probably need to go under a general anesthetic and this can be problematic for babies with achondroplasia because of their narrower passage ways.
So yes there is a little more involved with Leo’s condition than you were probably aware of. But we are confident that Leo will continue to grow into a strong and healthy boy with minimal (or no) health concerns.
Thanks for stopping by to learn a little more about Leo. The more you know about his condition the more chance we have of creating a community that is aware and educated about dwarfism, and therefore accepting and supportive of Leo and others like him.
A huge thank you to Olivia from https://ourlittlelionblog.wordpress.com/2017/08/19/learning-about-leo/ for allowing me to share her story and journey.