What I’m reading: The Yummy Mummy’s Survival Guide by Liz Fraser

“Here’s the only breathing exercise in this book: I am not a perfect mum (sharp intake of breath). In fact, I have never met a perfect mum (and another), and the chances are fairly high that you won’t turn out to be faultless in every way either (and, exhale).” 
Liz Fraser

A month or so ago I thought I should probably start preparing myself for impending motherhood. I’ve decided not to go to antenatal classes for various reasons, so a book seemed a good place to begin. (Ahh, the trusty book!) I wanted something written by someone with a sense of humour, that hopefully wouldn’t terrify me into hiding, but that was realistic when discussing the subject of becoming a parent. A book that reads like you’re having a chat with a Mummy-friend over a glass of wine, and not one that frowns on you for consuming that one glass of wine a week, like you’re already a bad mother. 


In Liz Fraser’s brilliant book The Yummy Mummy’s Survival Guide I discovered a kindred, sarcastic spirit. The book has a wonderful, helpful, funny, reassuring but realistic narrative about pregnancy, birth and the first year or so. It’s a book that assures you that becoming a Mummy doesn’t mean you have to stop being the beautiful, confident, sexy woman you were prior to motherhood. 


In the book she takes you through the stages of pregnancy, interjecting her own personal experience and stories from fellow Yummy Mummy’s that make you realise you’re not in this alone. She then continues through labour – writing realistically, but not scaring the living daylights out of you (well, not too much…still doesn’t sound like a walk in the park, but hey it’ll be fine…hopefully!) and then onwards into parenthood; covering topics from breastfeeding, to what to pack in a practical, useful changing bag. Fraser writes with fabulous humour and such human-understanding that you find yourself wishing she was your friend by the end of the first chapter. 


If you’re feeling slightly terrified about the changes ahead, are looking for a book to guide you through the initial wilderness of parenthood, and don’t want to sacrifice your sense of “self”, then I thoroughly recommend Fraser’s book.  I haven’t finished reading The Yummy Mummy’s Survival Guide yet, as I’m not quite ready to start reading about what happens post-1 year (let’s just get through the birth and the initial few weeks first), but I know I’ll be referring to this book on the labour ward. Most importantly, I’ll be referring to it after Grape is born to remind myself that everyone goes through the problems and issues that arise, but we all get through it eventually. Fraser shows you that it’s still possible to be Yummy as well as a new Mummy, without losing your own identity along the way.     


We’re off to London for the photo shoot tomorrow and I’m very excited! It’s an early start so I hope I don’t look too tired in the photos… A cup of tea and a croissant on the train will definitely be essential. 

Disclaimer: I have written about this book because I think it’s fabulous. All thoughts and words are my own.


  1. 5th November 2012 / 5:34 pm

    Dear Hannah. Congratulations; you have just made a grown (ish) woman weep. And today was going to be my non-weeping day, too! Dang, that’s a lovely review. Thank you, from the wobbly bottom of my heart. I raise a glass, and then another, to you and your screeching-small-person-to-be, and hope you enjoy the rest of the book! (Do read it all before the baby comes, if you can bear it. I don’t want to sound the Horn Of Doom or anything, but once Sproglet arrives you won’t have time to pick up a book for…oooh, about 10 years or so. But hey, it’s all fun, and kids are quite handy around the house once they’re old enough to unload the dishwasher….even if they do charge you for it. Cheeky b*****ds.) Good luck, and thanks again for such a lovely write-up! It sure does brighten a writer’s day to know that someone out there ‘got it’. Liz x

    • 5th November 2012 / 5:58 pm

      Hi Liz,

      Apologies I didn’t mean to make you weep, but I’m glad you enjoyed my post!

      Your book has been a great source of information and support so far, and with maternity leave looming (and under your advice) I will endeavour to complete it before the kicking, squirming baby in my tummy turns into a screaming, vomiting baby in my arms…although I am hoping to try and attempt to read SOMETHING that vaguely resembles a book between now and 2022!

      Thank you again for producing something so readable and human for a future Yummy Mummy, and for taking the time to read my post.
      Hannah x

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