Tuesday, 15 July 2014

The End of Abigail's School Term

I can't believe that Abigail's end of term is approaching.  My big girl has finished off her Reception year and in September will be moving up to Year 1.

Abi September 2013
Abi July 2014
I am so proud of her, how far she has come through her Reception year.  Learing to read on her own, write and so much more.  Her confidence has grown so much, my baby is not such a baby anymore!  Yes she is still only 5 but acts like she's 15!!
She has her first every sports day on Friday which I am super excited about, I can't wait to see her competing in her first race.

Lucky for Abi she is off on holiday this coming Weekend, which I am super jealous about! Yes, a holiday without Mummy, my Mum is taking Abi on hols to Devon for a week, along with my Sister and Niece Charlotte, who is nearly 4, her and Abi are very close (and argue alot!!) 
They will be staying on a farm.  I wish I was going too, instead I shall be house sitting and feeding my Mum and my Sisters Cats. (Exciting!)

I think Farm holidays are the perfect holidays for Children, I would love to wake up in the Countryside every morning, with the fresh air and nice long walks.  So refreshing! I have been trying to be organised and pack all her clothes early, she won't be needing loads of bits to take but I want to make sure she has enough, I bet I end up packing too much!  One thing I won't be forgetting to pack are her wellies, being on a farm everyday she will defo be needing to take those.  Skate Hut sell a lovely range of wellies for children (and adults).  I have had strict orders from Abi to pack her bikini, yes my 5 year old really wants to take her bikini away, she loves them! What happened to little girls and their swimming costumes!

I will be lost without Abigail for a whole week!

Have you planned any Summer holidays?

*In collaboration with Skate Hut

Friday, 11 July 2014

Sophia the Model

This is a pround Mummy Moment right here!

Sophia earlier this year was asked to model for the Funky Giraffe Bib Website which I was so excited about as I already had a few of their products which I love! Its so lovely to be able to look on their website and see my baby.

She recently had her second shoot for a very well known company.....More to come on that soon!!

Tuesday, 8 July 2014

Preparing for a baby – Birth Plans

How many of you a preparing or already have written up a birth plan for your pregnancies? I think these are a great way of feeling in control of what might happen when that big day comes, and to have a plan in your head that you can write down and share with your Midwife is great.  That way you get to feel like you can make the final decisions (if all goes to plan) instead of them being made for you, and at such a personal moment in your life I think it’s only right to have a plan which is going to make you feel comfortable and as focused as possible.  I think involving your partner with the birth plan is also important especially if they are going to be there with you, you can discuss options together write down ideas and feelings that you both have and then combine them into a proper plan, you will probably find as you progress in pregnancy feelings might change in certain things so you can always change things along the way!

Here are a few tips on what to think about with planning for the birth of your baby:

Where to give birth – hospital, home etc.
Companion – Who would you like to have with you, partner, mother or friend?
Pain relief – Some women like to read up on every choice of pain relief, others choose to do it the natural way
Feeding your baby – Will you breast, bottle feed or do both

With pregnancy/labour remember not everything goes as planned! I think every woman in their minds think about the ideal labour and what they would like, i.e natural birth, water birth, but the truth is, it is rare than everyone’s plans actually happen.  Giving birth is not easy and sometimes it is best to listen more to the Doctors and Midwifes if they think doing things a certain way will make your labour easier/safer for you then don’t feel upset.  

With both of my Daughters at the beginning of my pregnancies the first thing I thought about were birth plans! For my eldest Abigail, I planned in my head and with my then partner that I would like a natural birth, with no pain relief, even though the thought of giving birth actually terrified me I had to make up some kind of plan to prepare me I suppose mentally it made me feel better!! My plan never did happen, Abigail came 5 weeks early and my labour was painful but quick, and I actually really enjoyed it, I had gas and air but no proper pain relief and I felt 100% in control which was great.  With my youngest Sophia, I wanted a water birth and no pain relief.  But due to a medical condition I was refused a water birth which really upset me, as I had this image in my head and also written down on paper of what would make me feel the most relaxed during labour.  And of course that didn’t go to plan either! Sophia was breech so I ended up having an emergency C-section which absolutely terrified me, I was convinced that I would die during the procedure.  It’s quite a scary thought being cut open and having your baby taken out of you and all done whist you are awake but I had my partner with me and a great team to make sure my baby was delivered safe and well.

Wednesday, 25 June 2014

My Britmums Experience 2014

Last weekend, I attended my first ever Britmums conference in London.

I was lucky enough to be sponsored by Naty by Nature for the conference so a big thank you to them. 

So, I had heard so much about Britmums and have been reading lots of other bloggers posts from last year so was interested to see if it was a fab as everyone said it was going to be.  I have mixed thoughts about the conference and I don't think I was as impressed as I expected to be.

Why did I want to attend Britmums?
I wanted to go to Britmums to learn how to improve my blog and also to just be me for the weekend instead of Mummy.  I was looking forward to having 2 nights sleep in a bed of my own, knowing that I won't be having any little people getting in with me in the night and then hanging off the edge!

The Friday
So on the Friday I met up with the lovely Hayley who blogs over at Sparkles & Stretchmarks & Emma from Handbags to Changebags both of which were my room mates for the weekend, I went to meet Emma first and then we met up with Hayley and headed over to our hotel together.  We all clicked straight away, I have been talking to both Hayley and Emma since I started my blog and we have all become close, so when we met it felt like I had known the girls for years!

Being with Hayley and Emma really helped me, I don't think I could have gone on my own.  I also met the gorgeous Alex who blogs over at Bump to Baby who we have all become close to since starting our blogs and I hope it stays that way!

Me, Emma, Hayley and Alex

I found the Friday quite overwhelming and slightly stressful! It was manic, walking into a venue full of bloggers who I didn't know.  We stayed for a few hours, for the welcoming talk, got to know some of the brands some of which I didn't find engaged very well with me, I found some only wanted to get details about winning their competitions and that was it, no other interaction or info which was quite disappointing.  After a break we headed back to the venue and stayed for the awards which were great, and I really want to take time to read the blogs who were up for nomination as some I have never heard of, thats defo one thing I will take from Britmums is to make time to read other blogs and interact more!

So when the evening had finished we met up with Becca from Keeping up with the Joneses blog, she was so lovely we spent time with her and Diana from Paint Sew Glue Chew who I also got chatting with, was nice to finally relax and get to know some lovely bloggers.  Emma, Hayley and I then headed for a curry which the next day left me with a very dodgy stomach!
We stayed up until quite late back at the hotel room, chatting and laughing for hours.

On the Saturday morning we were in no hurry to get up and head to the venue for the 8.30 start so we had a lie in, and headed for breakfast before arriving to the venue after 11.  As soon aas we were in there, I felt a more relaxed atmosphore, not like Fridays! I attended a couple of sessions of which I thought would be relevant to me improving my blog.  And also got to know some more lovely bloggers.

We had been to most of the brand stands on the Friday apart from the Heinz Baby one, which was fab!  A lovely cool room, with the most welcoming people! I even got to have a massage which was lovely, and was given lots of information and samples for Sophia of the Heinz products, which she is loving (more to come on those in a seperate post)

The lovely Katy Hill

Heinz lounge enjoying a massage

Photo credit - Hayley from Sparkles and Stretchmarks

I had to leave slightly earlier than I would have liked on the Saturday due to Fridays curry! But I was happy to make it home as I knew Sophia was missing me and I was dying to feed her, breastfeeding and stupidly not taking a pump with me, resulted in me having really full, painful boobs!  Abi came back on the Sunday as she had stayed with my Sister.  I was so pleased to be home with my girls.

Will I be attending Britmums next year?
The answer is yes! I loved being me for 2 days.  It felt great to know I still had the confidence to mix with people I didn't really know, sometimes being a Mum you get stuck into 'mummy zone' something of which I needed to step out of for a day or two! I know that I need more time to myself even if its an hour we all need time to catch our thoughts.   I have also come away with some great tips on how I can improve my blog.

Thursday, 19 June 2014

Fisher Price First Steps Jumperoo Walker Review

One thing Sophia loves to do is bounce! So when we were sent the New Fisher Price First Steps Jumperoo Walker to review I knew straight away that she would love it!

The Jumperoo is a way for your baby to walk, jump and play all at the same time!  

The frame extends which Sophia thought was great having a walk back and forwards whilst hanging out in the Jumperoo! The seat also spins 360 so is even better as Sophia loves to look around and be nosy to see whats going on in the room, plus she gets to play with all her toys on the jumperoo which is great.  She loves it when Abigail is playing peekaboo behind her, knowing she can spin round makes it more fun! It also comes with a 3 position height so can adjust as your baby grows.

The seat is comfy for Sophia and machine washable which is great and has had to be washed a couple of times already! 

I love how colourful the Jumperoo is, and can see why Sophia loves being in it so much.  She LOVES to bounce and loves everyone watching her whilst she shows off!

It is quite a big product and takes up quite a big chunk of space so not really practical if you have a small living room with lots of kids toys!! (I know how manic it can be!)

You can find more of the Fisher Price Products over on their website.

Fisher Price First Steps Jumperoo retails at £125

Friday, 13 June 2014

Snack Happy Event with Denise Van Outen and California Almonds

If you follow me on Twitter, Facebook  or Instagram then you will have seen me over the last few days promoting the California Almonds #SnackHappy.

I was invited to their #SnackHappy Event on Wednesday in London at the Icetank (such a fab venue) 
The event was part of their #SnackHappy Campaign fronted by Denise Van Outen encouraging women to snack on almonds daily in order to keep a new healthy eating habit.

We were treated to some pretty delicious food made by a pretty tasty chef!! & not forgetting the cocktails (everything contained almonds!!) My fav was the almond and vodka cocktail! I think that went down a treat with a lot of the guests!!

At the event was an amazing pick n pix of different coated almonds, we got to fill up our very own jars and make our own combos to snack on (which I ate on my journey home!) My fav was the cinnamon coated almonds they were amazing!

I also got to have a one on one with the lovely Lucy Jones of Channel 4's Food Hospital.  She was there to give some advice and answer any diet and lifestyle questions we had, it was great to chat to her she gave me some pretty good advice on my day to day food intake! (which sometimes isn't so healthy!) There were also a couple of pampering treats, manicures and massages.

Densie Van Outen was lovely, she gave a short talk about snacking on the go and what a difference it has made for herself, she also chatted to myself and a group of bloggers, mostly about our children! 

I didn't realise how many ways you could have your almonds and even include them in so many recipes, some of which I shall be sharing on here in the future as we were given lots of recipe cards from the amazing treats we were served on the night!

I am taking part in the 21 day #SnackHappy challenge which is going well, I had one downfall last night with a naughty snack of chocolates which I felt very sick eating after! So I shall be sticking to my almonds!

I got to meet some lovely bloggers at the event (I didn't know anyone!) everyone was so friendly and welcoming, I had a fab time! There were three in particular I got to know well throughout the evening Lucy who blogs over at Its a London Bird Thing, Mirka over at All Baby Advice & Lilinha who blogs over at Lilinha Angel's World and all three are going to Britmums next week too!!

#credit Lucy for taking our selfie!!
Thank you to California Almonds for inviting me to the event I had a great time and shall continue to snack on my almonds!!

California Almonds can also be found on Facebook head over and Like their page!

Monday, 9 June 2014

Our Plans For The Summer Holidays

I still can't quite believe that in 7 weeks time Abigail will be finishing school & will be having 6 weeks off until she goes up to Year 1 (scary!!) Some parents dread the 6 weeks holidays, I love it! Getting to spend 6 weeks with my big girl and teaching her new things is just the best.  I try to plan out a few things to prepare myself for the holidays.  Of course many of you may be going on a family holiday or a short break.  This year Abigail will be going on holiday with her Grandparents, Cousin and Auntie, they will be heading to Devon to stay on a Farm (I wasn't invited *sad face*) I think holidays like this for children are great, my niece is 4 so she's at an age where she will be interested in everything, they will have a great time together!

This is Abigail and Charlotte in 2012 the last time they went away with their Nanny!

Am going to plan lots of days out to the Zoo, Farm, Museums and find lots of activities to do and hopefully the weather will stay sunny for the 6 weeks, that would make it even better.  This year we have Sophia so will be even better, she turns 1 in August so that will be a celebration to kick start the holidays.

What will your plans be for the Summer Holidays this year? (would love some new ideas!) *Survey results provided by Cotton Trader

If any of my readers have any favourite memories of their holiday spots in the UK, you can send them to summer.photos@cottontraders.com accompanied with a photo and you will receive 10% off of your next Cotton Trader order.