Izzy Judd is an author, violinist and proud mama to Lola and Kit.
The 35-year-old is also brilliantly candid about all things motherhood and was the inspiration to many when she opened up about her fertility struggles.
We caught up with Izzy at the Aveeno Baby event to talk parenting advice, starting nursery and plans for the future...
Kit's recently started nursery, how has that been?
Totally different! When we had Kit, it was a bit of a surprise and I had gone back to work so with work being freelance, he was quite quickly having to be looked after by other people so there wasn’t the same sudden gap. He walked to nursery with me and Lola every morning he knows the place, so he’s just gone happy as larry. So thank you, he’s very happy.
What are your top tips with settling little ones into nursery?
So with Lola, what’s always worked is reading books about what’s going to happen, whether it's with nursery or having to move her from a cot into a bed.
I was very emotional and actually now, my friend’s little ones are starting school and they were saying how much they underestimated that so much focus was going on the child, that they hadn’t really thought about how it would feel for them.
What has surprised you most about being a Mum?
Nobody can prepare you for what it feels like when you suddenly have this overwhelming responsibility to bring up a baby and a child!
I think probably what shocked me most was that even though I was physically very prepared (you know, all the baby grows, the pram, the nursery was ready) but emotionally, completely underprepared.
I think that’s why recently, I’ve been writing for mums to try and start thinking even whilst you’re pregnant about how you can help yourself because as Mums we feel like we don’t have time, but actually there are always moments in the day we can grab. It’s just about finding them!
What has been the best advice you’ve ever been given?
I think one of the difficult things about being a mum is guilt. I remember saying to mum that I just feel so guilty and she just said "welcome to Motherhood!" It never goes and it’s just part of it. She’s always said, "all you can do is your best".
How has Aveeno Baby helped your children's skin?
My family has eczema, so I was sort of prepared for dry skin. Lola’s very fair, she is very sensitive and her skin it’s delicate. So it was pretty early on, around 4 months, that it started to show and then when I was weaning her, she would react sensitively after foods. It’s not as if she was allergic to the food, it was just the reaction on her skin.
I then started to collaborate with Aveeno and since I’ve never used a different product. I love the fact that it’s simple. There are three steps, that you can mix and match from the range depending on what you need.
I use the daily wash for Kit and I just found it keeps it and bay and when I don’t use it I notice.
The main components are the extract, the oil and finely ground flour and that combination is very a moisturising antioxidant and calming to the skin as well. Most importantly restoring and helping to restore functions of the skin preventing water loss so you’re breaking that vicious circle of water loss, dryness, inflammation and itchiness that otherwise keeps going round.
What other parenting products can you not live without?
Currently, a colouring pad and pencils! Lola is obsessed with colouring, wherever I go. Now that they’re at nursery, I can't live without those packed lunch boxes... I think they’re called YumBox. They have compartments, and they’re really good, really easy. Because now I suppose I’m going slightly away from babies and into toddlers, but when they were little, actually still now with Kit, the Baby Bjorn travel cot has stood the test of time. It’s so easy to put up and it’s small.
What's your experience with Mum shaming?
I was talking to someone yesterday about this, and it’s really hard isn’t it, because when you’re out there more on social media, a mistake that you might innocently make can be really picked up on.
I think it’s a shame we attack rather than offering the advice kindly. It’s often the way that’s it's said because actually it is helpful to know if you’re doing something that you need to change.
On the one hand, it is helpful, but then you get so many opinions from people who really don’t know any better than you do and everybody does things differently.
I haven’t been too attacked on it and I tend to take things with a pinch of salt.
Any more plans for babies in the future?
We struggled to have a family and I’m very lucky to have two when there were days when I didn’t even know if I’d be a mum. So, Lola was an IVF baby and Kit came along as a total surprise. We have one frozen embryo from our first IVF cycle, so sometimes you do think that could have been Lola that I never met, but at the same time I'm very lucky that I have these two.