Troubleshoot and Night Nanny
"We met Claire after being told by many other mums, that she is "The baby GURU”. After 4 months of knowing Claire we can confirm that this is 100% accurate.
Our baby boy was 6 weeks old, VERY unsettled, vomiting all the time and had awful bottle feeding skills. After Claire coming to see him, she got the wheels in motion to find what was going on, she recommended an osteopath who saw us the same day. Claire spent endless hours trying to find ways of getting him to feed, helped with routines and respite during the night.
His reflux unfortunately took a turn for the worst and he needed to have a NG tube fitted during a stay in hospital, and the whole time Claire was there to support us. She was always there for support in hospital and out, she also helped with our 5-year-old son Murphy on school runs and helped him understand what was going on.
When home from hospital Claire was there to help with the NG tube feeding through the long nights, helped us set up a routine and different stations to help with each feed.
He had to stay in hospital again and Claire was there to help, doing school runs, helping in hospital and when we got out. She had just completed an expedition across Costa Rica for charity, fractured part of her ankle, and was there to help right from getting home.
Her vast knowledge of feeding, reflux, weaning and tube fed babies has been incredible, she spent hours preparing food, finding the best way to feed a fussy tube fed baby, and find a perfect routine to sort his days.
He is now a happy baby, settled and sleeping well, NG tube free, and it is due to Claire and her constant help and care.
She is hardworking, knowledgeable, and above all she really and truly cares about the children she looks after.
Without Claires help the last 4 months, we would not be in the position we are today, for many weeks Claire was our glue. Both our children adore her, and we will continue to trust Claire with their care until they leave home!
So, if anyone tells you "You need Claire Shouksmith" They mean it, you won't regret it.”
Maternity Nurse - Abroad
“Claire worked for us for five (solid) weeks, looking after our premature daughter. Her work ethic was second-to-none, going above and beyond what would ever be expected, including working on two separate continents. She was absolutely great with our daughter - caring, thoughtful and knowledgeable. She in fact taught us so much about feeding and sleeping that we ended up not needing her to work for as long as initially thought!”
Twins Night Nanny
“Claire started working for us three weeks after our twins were born at 37 weeks and I can honestly say I don’t know how we would have coped without her. With a two-year-old and three older kids as well our house was already chaotic enough, so having that extra help four nights a week made a massive difference to our quality of life!
Claire not only came and looked after the twins overnight, but she also helped get them into a routine in the day and identified allergy issues that the twins both had. The twins were really struggling to drink milk and we were starting to dread every feed. After trying various types of dairy free milk, Claire suggested switching onto a goat’s milk formula and we never looked back. By 14weeks old Claire had them sleeping through the night, I still don’t know how she did it. Without Claire’s expert knowledge we would still be struggling today.
Claire has a phenomenal amount of experience with newborns, twins and multiples, and it really shines through when spending more and more time with her. She is such a lovely, friendly person to have round and we welcomed Claire into our family from day one. All the other kids loved playing with her in the morning as well which made her feel like family as well as being overloaded with information about sloths from one of the little ones!
Would recommend Claire to anyone with a newborn, whether it’s a first baby, multiples, mothers with siblings, either way she is the baby whisperer and couldn’t give enough praise."
“We initially contacted Claire from a referral made by a friend, to try and understand and resolve our 4 month old (at the time) continuous wakings during the night and feeding issues (he was up hourly most nights!)
Claire joined us for a home stay in view to improve this however shortly after the consultation, Claire had noticed there was a problem with his latch to the bottle and suggested we get him checked for tongue tie and put us in touch with a lovely tongue tie specialist!
I was impressed that Claire was more knowledgeable than our Dr who assured us there wasn’t a tongue tie when there was.
After the tongue tie was released and cured, Claire returned for some sleep training and feeding improvements, Claire had him drinking double the amount he was and sleeping through the night self soothing himself by night two!
Claire’s very caring and great with babies, I didn’t feel worried once about the training as Claire’s technique is very soothing, always remained by him throughout the night soothing him and pacing it to provide upmost comfort and care for reduced stress of both parents and baby.
I highly highly recommend Claire, I would go as far to say Claire saved my sanity and my family’s well-being as we were in an extremely sticky situation.”
Triplet Maternity Nurse
“Claire is a very experienced maternity nurse, with a lot of knowledge and skill for child care, in particular how to cope with the demands of having multiple babies. This was invaluable for us as she helped care for our newborn triplet girls and handle the demands this inevitably entailed. She kindly thought nothing of travelling across the country every week for several months to support us. Claire was also a very helpful advocate for us during our stay in SCBU, being willing to liaise with the hospital staff and supporting us with establishing an appropriate feeding routine during this stressful time. She often took sole charge of all three babies including at night, which provided us with vital respite. She advised us about routine and this was key in helping us manage all three babies ourselves, and she has followed this up with further advice on how to tweak the routine as the girls have grown, so that they have set sleep and awake times, which enables us to continue to manage family life extremely well. Claire supported our decision to breastfeed as well as bottle feed the babies, and worked hard to help establish a good supply. She showed us how to feed two and three babies at once, which has been invaluable. As well as this, Claire was very helpful in advising us which equipment was useful, time saving and worth getting for multiples in particular, and she was generous lending us equipment that she had. All this meant that we saved time and money, thanks to her extensive experience. We are very grateful for all her hard work and guidance.”
“I would highly recommend Claire, she came for two nights and changed the whole 24 hour routine for my twins who were 8 months at the time- they were not sleeping through and were cat napping! Everything Claire told us to do and change and the advice given was excellent, it has all worked wonders and they now sleep through the night and have set naps in the day! Best money I have ever spent! Worth every penny and now they are much happier and sleep much better! Thank you ”
Troubleshoot and Maternity Nurse
“Claire came into our lives at the perfect time. Our twins were born at 34 weeks and we'd just arrived home... exhausted and clueless about how life with premature twins would look. The moment Claire arrived (just for a casual chat initially) she was friendly, knowledgeable and reassuring. In the coming weeks the twins developed reflux and had various feeding issues. Claire was an incredible support and shoulder to cry on in this really hard time. She was brilliant at helping practically with feeds (both day and night) which were such a challenge and came with me to the doctor's and fought my corner to ensure my concerns for our boys were heard. Claire has a phenomenal amount of experience with newborns, twins and multiples, she's a wealth of knowledge. Alongside that she's such an easy person to have in your home and join your family life, our older girls loved having her around and I enjoyed a bit of banter alongside the baby puke!!
Now our twins are 9months old and Claire still checks in with us and shows an interest in how they are doing. If you're looking for someone to help you out with your newborns, look no further, you've found her!!! ”
“I first met Claire when I booked her to sleep train my five month old (now 3 years old). He slept through within three nights and has slept through ever since so it seemed the natural thing to do when expecting my second baby to book her from night one!
Despite me breast feeding we worked out a plan where I was able to get some good rest but still feed the baby and Claire was fully supportive in that. I have consequently never felt that complete exhaustion you feel with a newborn. I am a confident, balanced mum, probably the very opposite of anxious, however, there have been times during the past 4 months where Claire has ‘read the script’ and just appeared early to help me, made me go to bed, or made a decision that in that moment saved my struggling more than she will know.
Whilst my first baby was textbook my second had silent reflux so it has been invaluable to have her as a guide and support in that and we have really got through it together.
Claire is a problem solver and someone who wants to make your life easier, she is very selfless and incredible with children. Claire has really become a part of our family.”
“Claire has been an incredible support to us. The support at night meant our baby was sleeping through by 8 weeks, however Claire has done so much more than that. She has given us ideas for structuring the days that make the days enjoyable and make for better nights. She has helped us endlessly with what to buy and not buy, and saved us so much money that could have been wasted. She brings with her so much experience but also really considers your baby. She is lovely to have around and incredibly kind - it was very easy to hand our baby over to her and he would always be very happy and relaxed in her care. She was helpful outside of working hours and that help has given us a really stress free experience of having a new baby.”
“The dream feed worked last night and for the first time in weeks she only woke once at 4am - thank you!! I feel that we have made so much progress in the last weeks after talking to you! You have a very gentle approach that works for us. You were a really positive and calming voice in moments when I felt very lost. You have a really comforting nature and it’s just what us new Mums need.”
“Claire brings an objective and clear headed perspective to troubleshooting, she is able to identify and explain where issues lie, whether it be with the child or the parents, she does this in a non judgmental manner, and works hard with the parents to resolve the issues.
Claire worked with us when we had our first baby and demonstrated that a solid routine and her techniques really worked in achieving 12hrs of sleep every night. When our second baby was born and Claire's techniques weren't quite yielding these results Claire took it upon herself to troubleshoot. As fatigued parents of two children under two years, we were willing to accept that our second baby was just a little bit difficult, but Claire was not willing to accept this, she researched the issues, spoke to her professional counterparts, and came up with the solution; our baby had an undiagnosed tongue tie which meant that he could not feed effectively, when the tongue was cut, Claire expected to see instant results, this did not happen and she noticed his inability to suck, she continued to work with us and an Association of Tongue Tie Practitioners member to gain a further referral which led to a second cut of the tongue. Still now at over 5 months of age he has no suck reflex, he has been weaned under Claire’s guidance and is thriving well. Claire went above and beyond during these hospital visits, she recognised when we needed propping up and gave us the much needed support which every new parent requires. She didn't leave our baby's side until she was content that he was healthy and back on track and that we could manage him and our two year old daughter. We cannot speak highly enough of Claire, not only is she a baby and child expert but she is also good company and able to integrate quickly and seamlessly into our family unit.”
"Claire is an exceptional maternity nurse. She went above and beyond to help me with my four week old son. She effectively troubleshooted why he was so upset a lot of the time. Overnight after she implemented her advice he was like a different baby - much happier and able to sleep. I would recommend her without reservation”
“We asked Claire if she could help very last minute. Our 4 week old baby had acid reflux and we were pretty desperate for support and sleep! Claire was exactly what we needed and provided night help over the course of 5 weeks. From the moment she arrived in our home we felt more relaxed. Claire was so knowledgeable about reflux and babies in general and all her years experience is evident. Claire provided constant solutions and helpful tips and cared very well for our baby daughter giving us some much needed respite. She was a delight to have in our home and our toddler warmed to her too. When it was the last time to say goodbye that was definitely felt.
I would highly recommend Claire to anybody needing an experienced expert to care for their baby.”
“Claire worked for us as a maternity nurse / night nanny for a few months, at the birth of our 2nd son in January-March 2020, she had previously looked after our first son born in April 2017. She did an amazing job as before, and she was even answering my questions about the baby by text message despite being very ill with covid-19 (that we caught from my husband who is a NHS worker). Claire has an incredible talent with babies and knows how to adapt to each baby. She is hard working, loves challenges and definitely loves taking care of little ones. She is also a very reliable, flexible and positive person. I definitely recommend Claire to anyone who is looking for a confident and friendly maternity nurse/night nanny and I would be very pleased to hire her again for my 3rd baby!”
“Claire came back to proxy parent for our 1 year old twins and 3 year old whilst my husband & I went away for 4 days. As always, Claire immediately slotted in like part of the family and the boys were delighted to have her back. We had just been told by the doctor that the twins had suspected CMPA and Claire set to work cooking the most incredible array of (mainly) vegan food for the twins and stocking the deep freezer to the max and got them on a complete dairy free diet! She also transitioned the twins from baby purée onto finger food and them feeding themselves, and dropped their morning nap so all 3 boys were finally on the same routine. So much in 4 days!”
“Claire did nights for us for our little girl from a few weeks old. She was reliable, knowledgable and made us feel completely at ease trusting our little one in her care. She helped us get through those sleepless nights and get some much needed rest! Claire always came with helpful advice and information and was very flexible. I would recommend Claire to anyone looking for trustworthy support to get through the night shifts.
“I would like to thank you for your help with my daughter. After struggling with literally no sleep for 18 months with my daughter awake every hour, and the little sleep we did get was both of us in my bed, I cannot thank you enough! I finally have my life back, and cannot believe it only took 2 nights of you helping me. I can finally think and sleep and have a happy little girl now as she was so sleep deprived herself! She goes to bed at 7pm in her cot in her own room and I physically have to go in and wake her at 7am the next day !!! You have really worked your magic for me and my family! I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend you to anyone! I cannot express how happy you have made my family.”
Twins Maternity Nurse
“Claire was with us for 4 weeks following the birth of our identical twin boys who were 6 weeks premature. We knew we needed an experienced maternity nurse as we had monochorionic twins with a high chance of prematurity and complications, and a 2 year old.
From the onset, Claire surpassed all expectations. Whilst in hospital before she flew out to our home she started to provide guidance on routine, milk supply and the transition back home from hospital. When Claire arrived with us our twins were 10 days old and still tube fed and we had a very unsettled 2 year old. She took immediate control of our family unit in a calm but highly practical and professional manner, working with us as parents and diagnosing reflux with one of our twins very early. She became an invaluable member of our family unit with hospital visits, liaised with neonatal paediatric specialists and gave valuable insight to medical professionals that neither myself or husband (who is a surgeon himself) could have done.
At home, Claire helped us with tube feeding and did all the night feeds which meant we could catch up on much-needed sleep after very broken nights in neonatal. She helped with the tricky transition onto bottles and breast without allowing the twins weight to drop again. At the same time, she was invaluable with helping me simultaneously breastfeed two very sleepy tiny babies with a limited suck reflex. I am pretty sure I would have given up on the breastfeeding if it wasn’t for Claire, something I would have looked back on and really regretted.
We had a maternity nurse with our first born but what stood out with Claire was how experienced she was in the field of multiples, drawing on many of her previous experiences and used this to provide an exceptional service. She is extremely mother focused and non-judgemental in her approach and helped take care of our toddler too. She even worked on some behaviour issues and his sense of inclusion with his new baby brothers (something that has paid huge dividends as he has never shown any sign of jealousy and absolutely adores his younger brothers to this day). It is very rare to have a maternity nurse who looks at the family unit as a whole and sees the other siblings and father as part of her remit too. I particularly enjoyed watching Claire give my husband 2 lessons on bottle feeding and giving him his “homework” to work on during the day!
Having someone live in with you for 4 weeks when you have two premature babies and a toddler and are feeling as if a bomb has hit is always a bit daunting. However, I can honestly say that having Claire live with us was an absolute pleasure. She was such a support to me, a very positive and fun personality and kept me highly entertained with stories and anecdotes.
By the time Claire left us she had been with us for 4 weeks. She had transitioned us off tube feeding and 3 hourly feeds, onto 4 hourly feeds and a combination of breast and bottle feeds that gave us more time during the day, and allowed my husband to take some of the feeds and allow me to go to bed early. Amazing!
Claire took me on trips out in public with the twins, we did my first double feed in public on my own and coached me how to do this, even through how to efficiently get 3 kids out of the car and into a buggy quickly and safely. She gave me a strong sense of accomplishment and when she left I felt so confident to be able to manage things on my own. We’ve already booked her to come back in a couple of months and iron out any issues.”
"As clueless first time parents, husband overseas with the military and a 20 week old puppy- we knew we needed someone to work magic in our home. Claire was approachable and professional from the start. She visited our home and answered our queries prior to the baby's arrival, she then stayed with us for a series of 12hr or 24hr stints and guided us through those first few daunting weeks, setting up a great routine which worked for us and the baby. Claire was always on the end of the phone to offer invaluable advice and support, there was never a question too big or too small for her, she willingly tackled them all. Claire has since been in touch with us and continues to offer advice when we need it. Claire's manner with adults, children and animals is fantastic, she is non-judgemental- which is just what is needed when you're a sleep deprived mum with a cocktail of hormones running through your body, and the guidance she offered in those first weeks was invaluable. ”
“Claire came to and did a home sleep consult with us as we were having problems with my 7 month old. We followed all of her excellent advice and he became an excellent sleeper, very easy to put to bed and we can’t thank you enough.”
“We are very happy with Claire’s work. She has now worked for us many times over the last 4 years, and, we now every January sit down and work out which weeks she is coming to help us over the next year. As a family with triplets it really helps to have someone with hands on experience and to have someone like Claire in your team who is more than capably of handling all 4 of our growing, boisterous boys on her own.”
Sleep and Feeding Consult
“Claire came to my house for a few hours and advised me on feeding and a new routine to help my baby who didn't want to sleep in a cot. I started the new routine as soon as she left and several days later can say it has really helped us. No doubt I will be in touch again, thank you.”
“The day after Claire came to our house, I had my daughter checked for tongue tie and Clare was absolutely right she did have a tongue tie. It has now been divided and we are now doing much better and that was clearly affecting our feeding and ultimately sleeping. Thanks again for your help.”
“Before our daughter was born we were both a little anxious about the first few weeks and months. Neither of us had ever had any experience with tiny babies – there are none in our immediate family and obviously when you spend time with a friends’ baby it’s only for a quick cuddle and not much else.
Both our parents are in Spain, so we knew we wouldn’t have family on hand to help and so decided to try and find someone who could offer us advice/show us how to care for her properly from the start. Traditionally, when you hear the words maternity nurse, you think of someone who comes for the first few months to look after the baby and therefore we assumed it would be too expensive for us to consider.
When we found Claire we were over the moon – not only is she a lovely, relaxed person to be around, but she also offers a more bespoke/ad hoc service. After meeting and chatting with her, we booked her to come to help for the first five days when we were home from hospital and then the same amount of time in week three.
We really wanted someone experienced and confident with us for the early days to give us confidence and support. We were particularly anxious because of the loss we experienced in my first pregnancy, so wanted to invest in someone who could give us support and reassurance.
We are very lucky in that our daughter has always been very relaxed and happy, sleeping pretty well at night, but I’m sure that is also down to Claire’s knowledge and experience, helping us from the start. We can’t recommend her enough!”
“Claire was wonderful. She came to our home and sat and listened to our situation. She immediately identified what she thought was the problem and offered a plan to try to rectify it. That night we put the plan into place when my 20 month old woke and he was asleep again quickly. Three nights later and he was sleeping through the night. Claire was open, approachable, empathetic and incredibly professional and I only wish we had sought her help earlier!”
“Claire came and worked with our 3 (almost 4) year old daughter. She had never slept well and was still waking up to 4 times a night for milk, to get in our bed and most irritatingly, to pull my hair! None of us were sleeping and after almost 4 years of this we’d had enough. Claire came and told us what to do, and having her here meant we actually followed through on the process. She was lovely, really easy to talk to and knew her stuff. She came for 2 overnight sessions and supported us whenever our daughter got up. One week later and she is sleeping through the night. We don’t know ourselves. Thank you Claire, I fear if you’d not been involved we’d have had a 12 year old bed intruder!
Phone Consult - Sleep
"We were having trouble with our 9 month old waking up to 5 times a night. Claire had helped when my daughter was younger, we called had a 30 minute chat where she gave me a few things to try and that very night my daughter slept through for the first time in months, and continues to do so to this day.”
Twins Maternity Nurse
“Claire worked for us as a maternity nurse for three months, taking care of our twin daughters, from the age of three months to six months. I am very pleased to provide her with the following reference. Claire quickly became an integral part of our families day-to-day life and our daughters routines. Her incredible experience with twins and multiples was immediately apparent as she assessed and adapted to the situation. Claire comes with an amazing knowledge with regards to looking after twins and naturally demonstrates the ideal combination of setting routines whilst reacting sensitively to the individual babies needs. Importantly I felt very comfortable around her confound her caring, professional and gentle manner to be very reassuring during a period of extreme change. Claire entered into our home at a low point, a point of desperation and left us with two smiling babies sleeping through the night, on an excellent routine and on the way to being fully weaned. She also gave us a lot of helpful advice to the behaviour of our five-year-old daughter who was and is clearly adjusting to the arrival of her new siblings. I can't recommend Claire highly enough to anyone looking for a warm and reliable maternity nurse who can immediately access a situation and implement the routines and provide reassurance. In addition, Claire’s next employers will no doubt appreciate, as we have, her punctuality, clear communication style and ability to take the initiative. I will certainly be calling upon her expertise further as the twins grow. I'd be very happy to discuss any aspect of Claire's time in our employment in greater detail.”
Triplet Proxy Parenting
“I have three and a half year old triplet girls and Claire Shouksmith has kindly stepped in to cover several whole weekends since the triplets were born and a 4 day stretch as well (another booked in for later this year). I can recall the exact dates as these are the only weekends we have had off since the girls were born! I simply have not met anyone else I would trust to leave my children with for that timescale, in the absolute knowledge that she would cope, and the children would have a fantastic time. Claire has a unique skill set - she is highly experienced yet has more energy than anyone else I know. She is patient and sympathetic, she will listen to a comprehensive hand over and respects the parents' approach to discipline and routine. She will go that extra mile, even tackle bad habits that you may mention, while you are away. I would not hesitate to recommend Claire with regards to a proxy parenting role. She has an excellent reputation within the multiples community, both through word of mouth, and her professional exposure as a well established childcare consultant. I know a number of families for whom she also has only acted in a proxy parenting role. And she gets booked up a year in advance, such is the confidence people have in her. She is a life saver to those families, as she has been to us. I would be happy to talk to anyone who may require further information”.
“We had been struggling with my daughter since she was born, she was permanently unsettled and cried up to 24hrs a day. Claire was recommended to me by a friend and she came round as soon as she could. I had been having problems getting the doctors or heath visitor to help me and was at the end of my tether. Claire was amazing, within a couple of hours she taught me how to help my daughter settle better, she gave me a list of things to try, confirmed with me that she thought my daughter had reflux and CMPA and assisted with getting her properly diagnosed and onto the correct formula and medications. Within a week of Claire coming into our lives my daughter was a different baby, she went from crying all day and night, and not been able to be put down, to sleeping and napping in her own cot and actually smiling and enjoying eating. We can’t thank her enough for what she has done and will be keeping her on speed dial for ever more.”
Twins Night Nanny
“Claire worked as a night nanny with our premature twins from when they were 6 weeks old and only just home from hospital. She immediately put us at ease with her calm and confident manner with the babies. We really don't think we could have coped in the early days without her. Claire fed and settled our babies through the night without any problems and helped us to sleep train them, gently advising us each step of the way. We would highly recommend her.”