Tuesday, 28 April 2015

50 Things That Make Me Happy

Many thanks to One of Each Kind for the nomination! 
Here are my...

1. My little family <3
2. Smiles
3. Baby giggles
4. Sleep
5. My boys reaching milestones and achievements
6. Having a fantastic job
7. Being lucky enough to work from home
8. Saturday nights in with my Mr
9. Trashy reality TV
10. Sunshine
11. Catching up with my friends
12. Loosing weight on weigh in days 
13. Cheat days ;)
14. Seeing the Backstreet Boys
15. Concerts
16. Visiting new places
17. Holidays 
18. My blog
19. My fave films
20. Music
21. Pay day
22. The seaside
23. Getting my hair done
24. New make up
25. Painting my nails
26. Pamper days
27. Lie ins
28. New clothes
29. Summer
30. BBQs
31. A tidy house
32. Candles
33. Hearing 'I Love You' <3
34. Parcels arriving at the door
35. Gravy dinners
36. Good news
37. Chocolate
38. Photos
39. Freshly washed bed sheets
40. Pizza
41. Good hair days
42. Cake
43. Taylor sleeping well
44. 90's music
45. Slipper socks
46. MAC Creme d'Nude
47. MAC Studio Tech
48. Good response to blog posts
49. Chinese food
50. Seeing my boys happy

I now nominate the following to post their 50 Happy Things, if they haven't already...

What makes you happy? 
Link up your lists below!

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Sunday, 26 April 2015

Project 365 | 2015 | Week 17

A photo a day, every day, for a year.

I think it's a fab way to document my week and look back on my year at the end.

Are you joining me?

Week Seventeen
April 20-26

Day one hundred and ten:
We've been busy opening and reviewing our Babymoov products this week. So far we're very happy with what we've received.

Day one hundred and eleven:
I found this picture on my phone of Taylor smiling, that his big brother had taken. :)

Day one hundred and twelve:
The business I work for got a new logo this week, we're super excited about our website launch coming up soon!

Day one hundred and thirteen:
In the back of Daddy's car on the way into town. Still managed a little smile even though he was feeling a bit poorly.

Day one hundred and fourteen:
Taylor turned 8 months old today, it's just flying by!

Day one hundred and fifteen:
An afternoon at the park with my boys today. :)

Day one hundred and sixteen:
A lil Sunday selfie! :)

How was your week? 

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Friday, 24 April 2015

I Love Babymoov!

I'm very excited to introduce to you French-based company; Babymoov.
Created and run by 3 Dad's who decided to bring design and innovation to the baby equipment market.
Their mission is simple: 'reinventing the everyday life of parents by providing reliable, highly designed and technologically advanced products driven by parents input' and I think they've got it spot on.

I've been lucky enough to be chosen to become an blog ambassador for Babymoov for 2015, which I'm very excited about, as the products are amazing and I'm super passionate about the brand.

Babymoov offer everything you need in terms of equipment for your baby; from highchairs to changing bags, monitors to bathtubs. And everything is designed with parents input, so rest assured the products have been created and tested by real Mums, to simplify and enhance your life as a parent.

They hold meetings with 'Mums' to discuss new designs and concepts, entrust them with new products before release, for honest reviews and testing, AND [get this!!] they have a Nursery, based near to their head office in the North of France, full of their products, which provides fantastic opportunities to observe their products in action. 

They have very recently launched the very first video baby monitor with ZERO radio waves. 
'The 0% emission baby camera is made with a revolutionary technology that ensures the total absence of electromenagnetic wave in the child's environment. The baby camera is connected to an intuitive apps to watch baby sleeping, capture photo and set up multiple functions such as temperature, night light, music by remote control.'


I think OH's obsession with gadgets has rubbed off on me here, I think it's a fantastic product!! :)

What an amazing company!

I cannot wait to share with you some of the products I've been sent for my honest review and opinion.
Until then, check out their website Babymoov.co.uk .

Have you used any Babymoov products?
What did you think?

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Wednesday, 22 April 2015

Baby Led Weaning: Beginners Guide Part 1

My weaning story with Bradley is completely different to the route I've taken with Taylor.
10 years ago, I weaned Bradley at the very, very young age of 3.5 months old, on the advice of in-laws, on traditional spoon fed pureed foods. He took to food well, and ate everything I gave him, until he got to the finger foods stage, when he then became fussy with food and he's never been the same since. Now, at 10 years old, he's the fussiest child I've come across. So I vowed to do things differently this time around.

Quite early on after having Taylor, I asked the ladies in my baby group how and when they planned to wean their babies. A lot of them mentioned 'Baby Led Weaning', which I'd never heard of before, but was really interested in finding out more about it, so I spent the next few months researching and reading the books until I became really passionate about it and decided this was definitely the way I wanted to wean Taylor.

What is Baby Led Weaning?

'Baby Led Weaning, quite simply, means letting your child feed themselves from the very start of weaning. The term was originally coined by Gill Rapley, a former health visitor and midwife. 
According to the most recent research most babies reach for food at around six months, which is also the time that mothers are being encouraged to wean by their Health Visitors, in accordance with the WHO guidelines.
The distinct advantage of weaning at around six months is that by then, our children are developmentally capable of feeding themselves proper food, in other words – no more mush!
You just hand them the food in a suitably-sized piece and if they like it they eat it and if they don’t they won’t.
That’s the essence of Baby Led Weaning. No purees, no ice cube trays, no food processor, no potato masher, no baby rice, no weird fruit and veg combos… just you and your child, eating food that you enjoy with you and your family.' - babyledweaning.com

Basically it means forgetting the mushed up food, feeding what you decide, when you decide. Baby led weaning is all about the child exploring by themselves, making their own choices and joining in with meal times with the rest of the family.
It saves all the time making up purees and allows more time to enjoy meal times together.
It gives them the chance to learn to deal with all textures of foods from the very beginning, rather than introducing in stages. Studies show that babies that are introduced lumpy foods later on are less likely to reject the food and become fussier with new textures. This is definitely true of my eldest.

Our BLW story

At 5 months I started sitting Taylor at the table with us, in his high chair, to get him used to social meal times. He quickly started showing lots of interest in food, reaching out for it and getting quite frustrated watching us eat and not being able to have any. I introduced a mesh feeder [more information in my Top Tips for BLW Beginners post] with some fresh fruit inside, and he sat for ages munching and sucking away, he was definitely ready for food. I wasn't ready to let him loose on actual food just yet, so I continued with the mesh feeder once a day, or frozen puree in an ice lolly maker. At 5.5 months I felt confident enough to introduce him to some bread, [Disclaimer: Guidelines state food shouldn't be given before 6 months] which he loved, and so his BLW journey began! I was nervous at first, there was a lot of gagging and I was tempted to intervene, but I didn't, and his gag reflex came quickly and he began dealing with it himself very early on.

Taylor's first solids - bread (5.5 months old)

Taylor's first Sunday Dinner (5.5 months old)

I started slowly, with just one food each meal, then gradually added more.
Now, at 7 months, he is on 3 meals a day, eats the same meals as us, with us. Never has he been spoon fed, he has spoon fed himself with a pre loaded spoon from the very beginning. 
He is very much into his food, and he pretty much eats everything I put in front of him, although he has started to make choices between different textures and favours some food over others. But he rarely turns anything down.

Taylor exploring scrambled egg and toast (6 months)

Spoon feeding himself Weetabix (6 months)

He hasn't quite worked out that he must finish what is in his mouth before putting more in and this often leads to a bit of choking, I've learnt to just put 2 things on his tray to minimise this but so he can still make choices.
A typical breakfast is Weetabix or Organix Cereal, and fruit. Lunch is something like sandwiches, toast, crumpet, pancakes or breadsticks etc, cucumber, fruit, Organix snacks. Dinner is usually the same as us; meat, potatoes, veg or a pasta dish typically. 

Demolishing Spaghetti Bolognese (6 months)

I'm so glad we went with the BLW route!! Big thumbs up from Taylor and Mummy!

This is a typical day's menu for Taylor - 

Breakfast - Organix Multigrain Mini Cereal Puffs with milk, and  banana.
Lunch - Warburtons Half & Half Easy Roll Wraps with cheese spread and cooked turkey meat, kiwi fruit, melon slices, Organix Goodies Carrot Sticks, and Petit Filous yoghurt.
Dinner - Chicken breast, steamed carrots, baby corn, green beans and sugar snaps.

Look out for the following BLW posts coming up soon:
- Pro's & Con's of BLW
- Top Tips for BLW Beginners
- Q&A with BLW Parents

Are you Baby Led Weaning? 
I'd love for you to share your experiences!
Do you have a question for the BLW Parents?
Ask in the comments below...

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Sunday, 19 April 2015

Project 365 | 2015 | Week 16

A photo a day, every day, for a year.

I think it's a fab way to document my week and look back on my year at the end.

Are you joining me?

Week Sixteen
April 13-19

Day one hundred and three:
We've been loving the sunshine this week, this is Taylor and I all ready for a walk in the sunshine. This hat didn't last long though, it was the first day he wore it and he threw it out of the pushchair, never to be seen again! 

Day one hundred and four: 
Taylor and my niece, Summer, out for lunch after a nice walk and shopping trip in the sunshine. :)

Day one hundred and five:
I do love this picture. Taylor and I went to the park for a picnic and this looks like him saying 'Mum, thats enough of the selfies already!!' hehe

Day one hundred and six:
The sunshine makes everyone and everything a little brighter! 

Day one hundred and seven:
I was snapping some photos for an upcoming blog post on baby led weaning, this was Taylor's breakfast :)

Day one hundred and eight:
Today I received a fantastic delivery of baby equipment from Babymoov, who I am lucky enough to be an official ambassador for. We can't wait to review them all for you!!

Day one hundred and nine:
Reviewing our first Babymoov piece, we turned it into a ball pool! :)

How was your week? 

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Wednesday, 15 April 2015

March Favourites & Update

How quickly did March pass by? Doesn't seem 2 minutes since it was February! It's all flying by too quickly!! 

So March? I finished my employment with my former company, which I feel great about. It's a tough decision deciding whether to go back to work after maternity leave, weighing up childcare fees and monthly in goings and out goings. Luckily, James is on a good enough wage to allow me to stay home, and I've been lucky enough to start an amazing new job, working from home which I'm really enjoying!
The work is almost done on our new home, so James has been decorating the rooms that are ready. Won't be long before we're in, finally! :)
Bradley got his 1st choice secondary school which is great news, I'm not so sure he's ready to go to high school yet though, he's got a lot of growing up to do!! 

Anyway, onto my Favourites of March...


Skincare Product of the Month...
I've raved about this lots before but it's just amazing stuff - Dermalogica Daily Microfoliant (£41.75) is a gentle face wash / exfoliater which keeps my skin looking and feeling fresh and clean. I really notice a difference in my skin if I don't use it for a while.

Haircare Product of the Month...
I really love Loreal Elvive Extraordinary Oil (£9.99/Superdrug), it really does make my hair feel soft and shiny after blowdrying. It's really light and not at all greasy. You may've read before how I'm a little obsessed with hair oils, and I think this one is probably the best one I've used so far.

MakeUp Product of the Month...
You may've read my previous post about a little Topshop Beauty Haul I had recently. Well I've been loving the Topshop Brow Fixer (£7.00) for super quick brows. The wax sets my brows in place perfectly and the pencil is the perfect shade to fill in my gaps and define the shape of my brows. 

Bath/Body Product of the Month...
You can't beat the 'original pink' Soap & Glory products. The scent is unbeatable, and using their The Righteous Butter (£10.50/Boots) never gets old. It's just gorgeous!

Fragrance of the Month...
I love my Ted Baker Sweet Treats Purse Sprays, they've been my favourite go to perfumes for a long time now. And I've been using Polly (£15.00/Boots) a lot this month as it's almost empty. I have a sweet tooth and LOVE the smell of this, it's just so yummy!

Baby Product of the Month...
We received some new Munchkin White Hot Safety Spoons (£2.99/Tesco) in the most recent SassyBloom box and they're just great. The coloured spoon tips turn white if the food is too hot, which is a great idea.

Read of the Month...
Bradley and I are currently reading The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole by Sue Townsend, after we went to see the theatre play. 

TV of the Month...
It has to be the new series of Keeping Up With the Kardashians, I'm slightly obsessed!!

Film of the Month...
James, Bradley and I sat down to watch The Hunger Games: The Mocking Jay Part 1 this weekend, I'm already looking forward to Part 2.

How was your March?

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Monday, 13 April 2015

Project 365 | 2015 | Week 15

A photo a day, every day, for a year.

I think it's a fab way to document my week and look back on my year at the end.

Are you joining me?

Week Fifteen
April 6 - 14

Day ninety six:
It was Easter Monday and we went for a nice walk in the sunshine. We were all very tired when we got home. :)

Day ninety seven:
One of my favourite pictures of the boys so far! We had a fab day out with the family at Twinlakes Theme Park, the weather was beautiful! It's a fab place for young kids, if you get the chance, go!

Day ninety eight:
Another fun day out at Wheelgate Theme Park, Twinlakes sister park, it's a smaller park, almost a glorified park, but again, give it a go, it's a fab day out. Taylor had fun exploring the sensory corner.

Day ninety nine:
This little monkey started crawling and pulling himself up on the furniture all in one day. He's growing up so fast, its almost breaking my heart!!

Day one hundred:
Treated myself to a few new MAC products to try out.

Day one hundred and one:
Bradley really wanted to bake a cake, so Saturday morning we got our bake on and the result was this yummy thing, it really was lovely!

Day one hundred and two:
Sunday afternoon was spent sorting the wardrobe, I'd been putting it off for months. I was in mourning of all my size 6-8's!! :(

What did you get up to this week?

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Friday, 10 April 2015

Me & Mine - Family Portrait Project - March

Me & Mine
The Family Portrait Project

March 2015

This month:

I am loving:
Finally getting somewhere with the building work in our new house!
Making the decision not to return to my job after maternity leave.

James is loving:
Having some time off work
The house almost being finished

Bradley is loving:
Almost completing Minecraft
Spending time with his friends and family

Taylor is loving:
Being able to explore and move around more.
Having his first taste of chocolate ;)

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Tuesday, 7 April 2015

Taylor's 7 Month Update

Taylor James' 7 month Update

I skipped his 6 month update as I didn't have the time to post, but here we are with the 7 month update, which just amazes me! 7 months!! Where has the time gone?? Scary! He has changed so so much, my Newborn has well and truly gone! He's on the move now so needing eyes in the back of my head!! :) He's almost crawling, but not quite. He's desperate to though and you can see him trying so hard and getting frustrated as he can't quite work out what to do with his legs! Bless him. And he's becoming very vocal, lots of mam-mam and ba-ba's. 

He was weighing 20 lbs exactly at last weigh in, and following his centile beautifully. 

We're in a mixture of 6-9 and 9-12 at the mo. Most of his clothes are 9-12 now though. 

He took to Baby Led Weaning so well! We started at 5 1/2 months [although its not recommended to start until at least 6 months] as he was showing so much interest in food. There was a lot of gagging at first, but his gag reflex progressed quickly and he's now on 3 meals a day and eating everything put in front of him. I'm so glad we did BLW, he sits and eats the food we do at the table with us and he loves mealtimes. Alongside his meals he has 6oz formula when he wakes, during the afternoon, then 8oz at bedtime and 4oz during the night. 

Hmm his sleep varies. Sometimes he sleeps really well and others he really doesn't. The last few nights he's slept well. He goes off to sleep at 630-7pm and sleeps though until about 3-4am when he wakes for a feed and goes straight back off to sleep until 7-730am. If he wakes during the night though he's a nightmare to settle, no amount of rocking, shushing, music or anything will get him back off, he won't sleep until I take him out and bring him in with me, which I really don't want to get him into the habit of doing. 
Day time naps, he has quite a good routine with, but he won't settle himself in cot he'll mess around and roll onto his front and I have to take him and rock him off and put him back down. Monkey!! I think we may have to think about lowering the cot too as today I found him pulling himself up on the side!

Bedtime Routine...
He still has a good bedtime routine, we're pretty strict with it and he knows it well. Bath time between 6-630, dried and in sleep suit, feed and in bed and he settles himself. 

This month I think the main milestones are him moving around more. he can pull himself up on furniture and shuffle himself around on the floor.

What he's loving this month...
Food. He gets very excited when he sees me bring in his plate!! Blowing raspberries! He loves moving around, and not happy in one place. And Baby TV!! He's obsessed with Baby TV, and no other channel will do it. When Tulli or Hungry Henry come on the telly he gets super excited!! 

Mummy's post partum body...
I'm still loosing slowly, if only 1-2 lbs a week, I could do a lot better but I tend to have days when I just want to eat what I want! I joined Slimming World and the food optimising is fab, but I go off plan a little some weeks. My willpower is just awful! :( I think I just expect it to fall off without any work! :( I've lost 10lbs since the beginning of the year, which isn't great, but I kept putting weight back on. BUT, it's coming off, slowly but surely. 

Mummy's Best Bits...
His cheeky little face just melts my heart, he makes me so so happy.  Seeing him grow and change so much is amazing. 

Daddy's Best Bits...
'When he tries to crawl, it's getting exciting!'

Bradley's Best Bits...
'Everything about him I love. I love when he climbed up the side of his cot, that was funny! I love that he smiles when I come in the room.'

Until next month...

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Sunday, 5 April 2015

Project 365 | 2015 | Week 14

A photo a day, every day, for a year.

I think it's a fab way to document my week and look back on my year at the end.

Are you joining me?

Week Fourteen
March 30-April 5

Day eighty nine: 
We put the bubble machine on for Taylor and he loved sitting watching the bubbles.

Day ninety: 
First time for flat shoe weather this year! We had a little Spring like weather at the beginning of the week and it was nice not to have to wear boots for a change. Although this photo showed me how desperate my skin is for some sun!!! :)

Day ninety one: 
Love an inspirational quote. :) 
It's been hard getting many photos this week. The plan this week has been for James to decorate the new house as much as possible while I stay home and entertain the kids. But the weather has been SO bad this week the majority of it has been spent indoors, so photos aren't very exciting this week!

Day ninety two: 
Taylor loves his Puppy and keeps giving him big cuddles, which we've been finding so cute this week!! :)

Day ninety three:
Love this quote. The best feeling in the world is falling into my mans arms at the end of a busy day! <3

Day ninety four:
I just can't get over how much this little man is growing and changing! It's just flying by!

Day ninety five:
My boys. My world. A little lazy Easter Sunday at home together.

What have you been up to this week?

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