As Stacey Solomon approaches her due date, the TV personality opens up about how she is preparing for the birth of her fifth child.
Solomon, 33, has two children with husband Joe Swash, 40: their youngest daughter, Rose, who is 15 months old, and son, Rex, who is three. He also has two other sons from previous relationships: Leighton, 10, and Zachery, 14.
The Sort Your Life Out star has been sharing news with her 5.5 million Instagram followers throughout January as she prepares the family home for their new arrival – while also carrying out a rigorous New Year’s cleanup. This meant repurposing Rose’s old crib as well as sorting out her old baby clothes.
“It’s really weird because I’ve never had my kids so close together – my differences were quite significant,” she tells HuffPost UK. “Rex and Rose weren’t great, but the rest is a five or seven year gap.
“So that’s weird. We feel like we’ve just had a baby and we’re about to have another.”
Rose was born in October 2021, so it’s safe to say that finding out they were expecting again was certainly a surprise for the couple, who got engaged in 2020 before getting married at their family home last summer.
“I think it’s easier to prepare [for the next baby] because I haven’t put the crib down yet, the moses basket is still there,” she says.
“Actually, I’m more about getting Rose into the next phase of her life than getting ready for a newborn baby. She is my priority and I have to calm her down in her own bed and sit in a chair, not necessarily in a highchair.
“And then, I suppose, the next one will follow suit. Basically, it doesn’t feel like we’re getting ready for a newborn. We seem to be going from baby to toddler.”
As everyone knows, choosing a new baby name is hard – not just when you’ve already ticked four off the list.
Discussing the name Rose, Solomon says, “It’s just perfect, but now we don’t know what to call the next one, especially if it’s a girl.”
Despite rumors circulating that the 33-year-old could name her next baby Autumn – she claims they don’t really have any rivals at the moment.
“We have absolutely nothing – no names,” he says. “We keep saying names and then saying, ‘Oh no. But to be fair, I didn’t name Rose until she was a few weeks old.”
In last year’s Q&A, Solomon said they chose the name Rose because every night after she was born, the sun would set outside her bedroom window, and when it did, “it would always shine on her cell phone and illuminate the rose.”
“Then we knew it was our Rose,” she explained.
Like many parents, Solomon has been very happy to let her little ones play in her bed over the years – being a mum of three boys, she is especially keen to enjoy cuddles for as long as possible.
“If my boys want to go to bed with me and cuddle me, I do my best because they won’t want to cuddle me forever,” she says.
“At first, I don’t sleep together [when they’re very little] because I am too scared,” he adds, aware of the security risks.
A survey of over 8,500 parents by The Lullaby Trust found that 76% of parents had slept with their baby at some point.
“My kids are quite small and they always seem very skinny and vulnerable to me and I always think I’m going to flatten them because I’m so exhausted,” adds Solomon.
“But when they get to that age where they feel a bit more strong, then yeah – if they want to get with me, they get with me.
“We slept together for quite a while – probably because I was a single parent, it was OK. But even when Joe showed up, it made no difference. He just squeezed in.”
Sort Your Life airs on BBC One and iPlayer from Wednesday 25 January at 9pm.