The Merge Journal was the creation of four Australian mamas who found each other through Instagram. A collection of interviews, birth stories, musings on health, interiors, lifestyle and fashion, and reflections on the journey of parenthood.

Over the past 18 months we have absolutely loved getting to know all of the wonderful parent folk who make up the TMJ community. We’ve loved hearing your birth stories, sharing our #tmjmamacrushes, our motherhood musings and brands that we genuinely love. But like all the great sitcoms before us … all good things must come to an end. We know, nobody ever likes the series finale.

We hope The Merge Journal, as it remains here, will continue to inspire, help and encourage you – sometimes make you laugh, and perhaps make you cry (in a good way). So, pour yourself a cuppa and settle in for a read.

Us mamas couldn’t be more proud of what we have achieved with The Merge Journal, but it is time to love you and leave you. It’s time to say goodbye. As our lives get busier with the daily school runs, new businesses, returning to work, new ventures and new babies, we’ve decided to take a step back from TMJ.

As our tribe has grown, so too has our village and we have made soul sisters for life.

Much Love from all of us TMJ Mamas,

Deanna, Emmy, LizCandice xx

Seven Tips To Toilet Train Your Toddler


by Deanna

So we officially started toilet training our recently-turned two year old on the weekend. Being our second child we thought we would remember everything. We didn’t.

We’re on day six and things are going well! Here’s what we did (and some tips for those prepping and wondering where to start).

You put what in ya coffee?


by Liz

Every morning for the past few months I’ve started my day with a cup of coffee loaded with butter and coconut oil. It’s delicious, doesn’t make me cray cray like regular coffee does and it keeps me feeling full right up until lunch time. I’ve shared my morning coffee ritual on my Instagram stories a few times and have had lots of people wondering what the heck it’s all about, so I thought I’d explain.

Mama Crush: Amy Osmanhodzic

TMJ Loves

by Deanna

Ok. We’re just going to put this out there. All four of us mamas have had a HUGE crush on the beautiful Amy, for what feels like forever. And when she jumped onto our screens with that birth video, well, we soon amped up our ‘crush’ to full on ‘love affair’. Amy is mama to three divine little beings, and a hypnobirthing teacher and birth doula, founding Earthbound Babies. She has recently moved her family from Perth over to the Byron Bay hinterland, and we couldn’t be happier. Now living that little bit closer, we hope to meet in person one day soon, so we can goo and gaa over her beautiful children, and her gorgeous smile. Did we mention her husband plays guitar and can sing? Yes, you can officially start crushing now too. Read on to find out more about this amazing mama …

Birth Story: Emma & Lila

Pregnancy & Birth

Emma has bravely shared with us here, the birth story of her daughter Lila:

Sunday 12th June, it had been a pretty normal day except for a niggling tooth pain, was an odd one and not your typical tooth pain, so of course, Maya’s nap time I spent some quality time with Google ‘tooth pain and labour’…’can tooth pain be a labour sign?’ Yes I was clutching at straws wanting this baby to come and funnily enough many other fellow crazy mums had tooth pain before labour!

What I’ve packed in my Hospital Bag; Pretty vs Practical

Pregnancy & Birth

by Deanna

Let’s face it. Nobody really wants to see the practical side of what you pack in a hospital bag, but even third time around I have still found myself checking online, to see if I have everything I think I might need. This is the key word: think. Some people think packing certain things is ridiculous, while others couldn’t leave the house without their tinted moisturiser. It’s SUCH a personal thing, but for general purposes, it’s great to see what other expectant mamas pack in theirs – as a guide, and a reminder (considering before reading some lists this time around, I had forgotten maternity pads eeeek).

A surrogacy story: Part 2

Pregnancy & Birth

Guest post: Anonymous

Did you read ‘A surrogacy story: Part 1?’ 

“Hi, total stranger!  I feel like I’ve asked you a million questions since we’ve been Internet ‘dating’ for the past few weeks. I feel so lucky that you chose us, the agency did so well in the matching process! So, would you babysit my baby for 9 months? I also need you to drive (8 hours return) for obstetrician visits, it’s probably best you get your children babysat, you’ll get poked and prodded with needles for blood tests and then you’ll need to inject lots of hormones into yourself! I may even start sending you supplements and all sorts of green smoothie, bone broth and fertility diet recipes…”

I’m so good at sleeping I can do it with my eyes closed


by Deanna

But not really. This headline had me laughing out loud. For most people the struggle is in the falling asleep part, less than the staying asleep. There are countless obstacles (especially in this social media fuelled world) that can disrupt our circadian rhythms, and prevent an easy get-to-sleep-quick regime. But fear not. After countless years of dealing with this problem, I have found my top five solutions. And they probably aren’t things you’ve read elsewhere. Ok, some of them are standard, but some might just surprise you. 8pm is my ‘turn off’ time. It’s not my go to bed time, but it’s the time I like to start thinking about bed … and how I can help myself get to sleep sooner. Here are my five non negotiables when it comes to snooze o’clock.