The Baby Show Haul

The Baby Show is an event fairly local to where we live in the midlands, I visited for the first time when I was pregnant with Nandy and didn’t purchase much as I felt completely inundated with choice and products which I wasn’t sure I would need.


This year was somewhat different and I visited with a more open mind as to the products which we use and a list of things we needed to buy.

Firstly we went off to see the lovely Kiera at Mama designs. We went last year specifically to buy one of her gorgeous mint and grey cellular blankets – it was a must for us to return to her stand again and purchase one of her gorgeous babasacs with the mono pineapple print on it!! We bagged this at a special show price, however, it has to be said that the normal price is still really competitive as the quality is superb and so so stylish!!!

It was then off for a quick bottom change for Nandy at the Aldi mamia changing area and they certainly didn’t disappoint! They gave us plenty of free nappy samples and whilst I waited they gave me some food samples too including pouches, snacks and even a pack of tommee tippee feeding spoons! All of which will come in extremely handy right now.

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Day at the Farm

Daylesford Farm Shop is a gorgeous place based in Kingham Gloucestershire.

We spent the day here in April and returned again in May 2017 for their summer festival. Sadly the sun didn’t shine the second time around but it was still a fun packed day for the family!


It’s always difficult to think of things to do with babies because they get bored at home but also aren’t active enough to take advantage of alternative activities. I’ve discovered that Nandy just loves being out and about regardless of where we are – his head is always flicking from left to right taking in all of his surroundings like a meerkat!

When we visited the first time the weather was nice enough so we decided to take advantage and buy some of the gorgeous organic produce from the farm shop to eat and set up a picnic in the field. We did seem to be the only ones doing this though, but it was so beautiful we couldn’t resist! We had cheese, pickles, olives, fresh bread, elderflower ham and sausage roll, plus sundried tomatoes and homemade potato salad – it was lush siting in the sun and snacking on the food.

We saw cows and sheep, no pigs. We took a walk over railway bridges and streams, through fields and explored where the beehives and blossom trees were.

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Post Partum Diet & Fitness Journey

Before I had Nandy I was in decent shape a size 8-10 and an avid gym go-er. It’s no secret that I’m not happy with the changes to my body since being pregnant. I estimate I added some 4 stone in weight during pregnancy and the water retention was also pretty major! See my previous post “on Mum Bod


With the need to return to work looming I’ve decided I need to step it up a notch or two on the fitness and diet front. I really don’t want to go back to the office and look like a huge whale and face all the male chants of “oooh still pregnant are we?” Or such things. Plus one thing I’ve realised is that most of my confidence as a successful career woman comes with how I look. The high heels and sharp suits. One of my team politely put it that he was “hoping I would bring the glamour back”.

With being on maternity leave it’s so chilled and relaxed. You are around like-minded individuals who are in the same position and It’s so easy to sit in cafes all day drinking mocha lattes and eating cake chatting about baby sleep routines and milestones isn’t it!!!

So, cutting to the chase – I started my “21 day habit” at the local gym, they have given me a nutrition plan to follow and a set of rules and challenges.

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Tears into Smiles with Elastoplast 

Nandy may only be 9 months old but we love to get out and about and explore – we shouldn’t be afraid of letting him explore his surroundings through fear of the odd cut or scrape!


We were kindly sent some Elastoplast children’s plasters to use if (and when!) Nandy has any little “boo boo’s” or “mishaps” or “scrapes” – however you want to name those minor accidents that can occur at any time with little ones who are on the move or being adventurous!

We love to get out and about and take photos in the most unusal of places, any slip or fall could result in some tears!

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5 things you think about when you’re a new mum on a night out 

You’ve just had baby number 1, you haven’t been out the house in months, when you’re finally let free there’s 5 key things that you may feel ….

1. Mum Guilt

It’s been an eternity since you last went out, you’re finally allowed to roam free and you spend the entire night feeling guilty.

Guilt because you’ve left them at home. Guilty for their dad or career because they’re not used to having them for such a prolonged time and what if baby is a little sod and makes their evening a nightmare?!

Guilty for the 1 alcoholic drink you’re about to consume whilst breastfeeding.

Guilty for feeling happy about going out without them….

2. Mum anxiety 

If the guilt subsides for a moment it only momentarily makes way for anxiety – anxious about what to wear, will that black dress fit?

Will the black dress be too dressy?

Will jeans be too understated? What IS the thing to wear these days?

Anxious about whether baby will behave, anxious about whether hubby will behave!!

Anxious about whether there’s enough milk stocks / food / water for 3 hours whilst you’re out (of course there is!!).

The constant checking of the texts to see if they’ve called ensues – glancing at the notifications to see if you have a message stating “get home now I’ve set the house on fire and the baby is screaming because I spilt all your precious gold (ahem I mean breastmilk) on the floor!” But actually the text just reads “hope you’re having fun, all fine here”

3. The “Why did I wear heels / can I get in my pjs yet?”

You’ve spent weeks dreaming of those heels you’ve bought especially for this night out, the outfit is planned and all ironed and ready to go and you stroll out of the house trying to walk in said shoes and breathing in from the too tight skinny jeans cutting into your mum tum.

It’s 30 minutes into the meal and you’re already daydreaming over your crab fishcake about wearing your elasticated waist cosy pjs and kicking those heels off in favour of a pair of monster feet slippers.

4. “Ooh I’d love a brew right now” 

You go out with the girls – you’re all sipping fancy cocktails, but deep down you’re thinking – “ooh I’d love a brew right now”.

That is all.

5. Fat / Ugly / Tubby / Mumsy 

So you leave the house feeling 1,000,000 dollars – heels are on, actual makeup on and hair is dried and styled (instead of the usual mum bun) then you walk into the restaurant and immediately spy a 20 year old, 6 stone, model walk past and boom! Mumsy, frumpy, low self esteem comes and smacks you clear in the face like a train which screams – ‘no you’re not young, free, single and hot anymore – you’re a married, 30 something mum with size 12 jeans on and a stretch marked jelly belly and you will never look good in a bodycon dress ever again’.

Can you relate to these thoughts? If you have your new mum thoughts then please feel free to comment and share 🙂

Rebecca

Kokoso Baby – Natural baby brush review

Nandy has cradle cap – he’s had it since he was very small. It’s an inconvience – it looks ugly and unsightly and I’d do anything to feel his soft and scale free hair and scalp.

It is important to note that Nandy also has eczema which we need specialist prescribed creams for from the GP which limits what we can do with his dry skin / cradle cap treatment and always advisable to seek advice from a health professional if your baby suffers from skin conditions and you’re not sure what to use on their skin. 

We have tried a number of products on his head such as olive oil, dentinox cradle cap shampoo, baby oil, emulsifying ointments and unnatural plastic bristled baby brushes.

Now it can be said honestly that his cradle cap has improved over time with the use of the cradle cap shampoo, and some combing with a plastic comb and brush, but, it’s still there and can occasionally flares up even when we think it’s on the out! Just when I thought that we would be stuck with this issue forever imagine my excitement when this package from @kokoso baby landed!


Their cradle cap brush is made of 100% natural bristles and beechwood and can help with the cradle cap, or so they say….
We set out in testing the theory right away and used the brush to gently exfoliate Nandys scalp only once a day for a few weeks. 

The Result – I can honestly say his cradle cap has almost gone!!! 

Whereas we used to have large sized greasy scales on the top to the front of his head – there are now only the odd signs of tiny white dry flecks which are more like dandruff now rather than scales!

The brush is made so beautifully with it’s beech wood handle so it looks so nice in his nursery too! No more nasty plastic Brushes. 

Kokoso coconut oil and cradle cap brush


You can always finish off after brushing with a nice baby head massage using Kokoso coconut oil. Unfortunately we didn’t do this as we only use the coconut oil on Nandys face to help with any dry patches but it would certainly be acceptable to use on the hair and scalp and may have even helped to clear the cradle cap quicker than just using the brush alone. 

You can purchase the Kokoso cradle cap brush from their website at a great price if only £7.99! 

Rebecca 

We were sent the natural baby brush to review and genuinely love it, we were not paid to advertise this product. All opinions and reviews are my own. 

Note **Kokoso always recommend you carry out a patch test first before using the product to be sure your little one doesn’t react. 

KidloLand App Review

We were contacted by the lovely team over at KidloLand and asked to review their app which is suitable for babies and children up to the age of 5. 

Having an active youngster I was eager to download the app right away and start to find out what it was all about and hopefully entertain him.

The app can be downloaded from your mobile App Store either Android or Apple 

iOS: https://itunes.apple.com/app/apple-store/id533412119?pt=275891&ct=lifeofnandy

Google Play Store: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.internetdesignzone.nurseryrhymes&hl=en

Amazon Appstore: https://www.amazon.com/KidloLand-Nursery-Rhymes-Educational-Preschool/dp/B00HFQBCEU

After subscribing you get access to content such as nursery rhymes, games and educational tools.

Really intrigued

The app is fun, bright and noisy – perfect for entertaining a interested baby or toddler.

Example of the menu – Bright and colourful


Immediately I downloaded the content for the nursery rhymes section – the downloads are fast but I must admit you do need to take time to download the content in advance so that it is there for when you need it most!

Learn to trace


Ok so let’s start with just a couple of Negatives:-

  • You have to download the content before you can use it.  
  • The singing voices could be better and the song lyrics can sound really made up (to the point that my mum and I were really laughing at some of the lyrics they chose)!  

Now onto the Positives:- 

  • It’s brightly coloured and loud and immediately gets their attention!
  • It’s informative and educational 
  • It’s handy!! – on your phone or tablet so you can transport the entertainment around!
  • It has plenty of options for what to play so your baby won’t get bored easily! Games, music, even Christmas themes – all sorts! 

If you have a tablet device I can imagine this app would be even more handy to have – I was just using my iPhone to play the content to Nandy and found he kept trying to take the phone into his own hands – so I would seriously recommend you download the app onto a device you aren’t bothered about handing over to your kids to get their mucky hands and dribble all over! 

We were sent a free 6 month subscription to this app in exchange for a review. We would not take part in a review if we did not pride ourselves in the fact we give honest feedback. 

We would recommend you download the app if you have time to download the content and you want an educational and fun tool for your little ones! 

More information on the app and the subscription charges can be found by going to the KidloLand Website.
Rebecca 

Photography 

Before I got pregnant I only ever took photos on my iPhone, we owned a DSLR camera, however, it was older than gods dog!! I always knew I wanted to start a Instagram page for Nandy but had no idea what constituted a decent photo. I snapped away happily on my iPhone and posted the photos on his feed. Soon enough I started to see other Instagram accounts sharing their photos which were of significantly greater quality and much better form than mine, which got me thinking, I need to improve my photos!

So, I dusted off the old sony DSLR camera and went to visit Sarah @peagreenboat photography. Sarah has taken some awesome photos of my bump and all of Nandys’ newborn photos, so it made sense to go and get a tutorial from her on the in’s and outs of form, light and how to set the camera up manually instead of “auto” which is cheating! 

Sarahs’ photos have been featured in vogue magazine, she recently worked with Peter Andre and Emily on an advertisement for N Power and her super power abilities to put babies to sleep and recently had “image the day” from the Guild of photographers – not bad ey! 

Baby superpowers with Peter Andre, Emily and Sarah @peagreenboat

So let’s start from then beginning – Lesson 1 – It was a cold December day and the light was poor, we had to make best use of large windows in her studio to allow me to try and capture some snaps. Nandy only lay down at this point and didn’t sit up of his own accord so taking various shots was difficult to achieve. I learnt about how to deal with light and using the camera settings to get the most out of the situation by adjusting F stop, ISO and white balance. 

Merry Christmas – Lesson number 1

Christmas Nandy

Still something wasn’t right, I was having to upload the photos to my iMac from the camera and faff around then emailing them back to myself to upload to Instagram. There must be an easier way!
I reverted back to using my trusty iPhone, it was easier and more convenient. But wasn’t giving results. I started taking photos in the conservatory at home over winter as this was the brightest place in my dark house! Even with natural light flooding in – it still wasn’t enough – that’s when I took the plunge to buy a new DSLR. I read a few reviews and sought some feedback from other mums and it seemed the best choice would be a canon or Nikon.

I decided on the canon – it was relatively cheap for my maternity leave budget and would take crisper photos even with just a kit lens (I’m still to upgrade to the 50mm fixed lens!!!).

Immediately I noticed a difference in my photo quality and it made uploading my pictures to Instagram way easier due to its in built wifi function! 

I’d gotten used to taking indoor photos against a homemade white background but I hadn’t yet explored outdoor photos – I needed more help, so we went back to see Sarah….

Me (taken by Sarah)


Sarah owns a beautiful property in Worcestershire with some beautiful grounds – flowers a plenty and a view to die for. It was the perfect setting for some outdoor photos. The sun shone and the photo opportunities were aplenty! 

I did want my Instagram feed to have an overall “whiter” feel to its appearance so we scouted out places around her grounds which would lend themselves well to the look we were after. We found doorways and flowers all keeping with the white theme.

It was when I passed a beautiful magnolia tree that I couldn’t resist taking some less than “white” photos with his toes in the grass. He was loving the attention and full of smiles and eating everything he shouldn’t. 

Sarah showed me how to meter for the change in sunlight – amending the ISO settings, white balance and adding in a reflector board / shade to keep the sun off his face and create shadow (which caught the wind and smacked poor Nandy in the face).

I struggled with the change from shaded areas to direct sunlight – but with a few tweaks to settings I was back up and snapping away again.

The camera lens does limit my photos and my post production / editing skills need to improve but it won’t happen overnight. My next trick is to buy and then teach myself photoshop so I can make professional edits to my pictures.

So far this is just a hobby and I’m enjoying it. So that’s all that matters really. 

Thanks to Sarah @peagreenboatphoto for her help and support – if you’re interested in having some photos taken of your newborn / baby then contact her below …

The Post Baby ‘Mess’ 

Anyone relate? You’ve just had a little one, there’s stuff everywhere. High chair in the kitchen, food catapaulted all over the walls, toys all over the floor, soggy muslin cloths flung in every room, dirty nappy bin overflowing and washing, washing and more washing piled high, Yesterday’s pants strewn on the bathroom floor and cups of half drunk tea lying around the place like a cup graveyard… yep welcome to my new world of mess. 

Back when I thought ironing muslin cloths was a good idea!


Let’s rewind to my pre-baby life. I was OCD about stuff, things had to have their place. (Now I’m not saying I don’t still have OCD about where things reside but I’d say I’m just a tad more relaxed these days). You see, this is the thing … when the baby comes along all order seems to go out of the window. Doesn’t matter how many “ikea hacks” and baby organisers you deploy; there’s still a massive shift in your lifestyle and it takes time to adapt – or in my case – you don’t. 
Let me see if I can list this out in a simpler way (not because my readers need it simplified but because that’s how my brain currently operates that way now I have a child).

Key:-

Pre baby thoughts / Post baby thoughts

1. I’m not having plastic toys 

Sod it buy the jumparoo with added flashing tacking plastic keyboard and plastic cow.


2. Everything will have a place 

What do you mean which drawer do muslins go in? They could be anywhere!

3. The lounge will be our adult space 

The Lounge is now full of toys 

Toys in the lounge – standard now


4. Everything will match the decor.

I may consider redecorating the house in primary colours to match his toys.

5. Baby will have to fit into our ways

Let him do what he wants if it stops him screaming.

6. I may need a hobby to keep busy

Hobby? I haven’t been for a wee in 5 hours – I must schedule that in before my bladder implodes.

7. All white and pale colours are nicer I’m not decorating his room yellow!

Sod white and pale colours they shows the mess – where’s that yellow?

8. Our garden is not having a plastic slide and climbing frame
!

What’s he having for his birthday? A plastic slide and climbing frame for the garden …

9. He’s not having food in the car

Here have this wafer in the car whilst mummy tries to drive in peace. 

10. I won’t have a mucky faced baby 

Fine – if you won’t let me touch your face you can go out with a snotty nose and prune smeared up your cheeks

Food EVERYWHERE

Can anyone else relate to this? How has having a baby changed your outlook on mess / home life?

Rebecca 

6 Spring essentials for a stylish Mum

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I do like to dress well but since having Nandy I’ve found my shape has changed, I don’t feel the same towards fashion as I once did and I feel unbalanced tottering around in my heels these days. But that doesnt mean we have to dress frumpy or lose our sense of style right?

I’ve therefore decided to write up a blog post about 6 stylish items which I love and which I feel are those must have items for stylish spring wardrobe and dressing table!

1. Jo Malone perfume – I adore Jo Malone products, I have various things such as bath oils and colognes but my must have favourite is one which hubby bought me for christmas – their honey blossom scent is just so sweet and girly!

2. DKNY Blush bag – I recently treated myslef to this goregous blush handbag from DKNY. It goes with everything and is perfect for nights out with friends where you wanr ro dress up and feel glam

3. Cluse Watch – Im in love with anything marble at the moment and I own a cluse watch already, so why not combine the two!? This watch is just sooo pretty!

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4. Suede Biker Jackets – The one shown is from river island but you can get these from anywhere at the moment, I have two one from new look and one from missguided. They are perfect for where you get a bit chilly and need to throw something over a grey t-shirt

5. Jimmy Choo trainers – Im totally in love with these rose gold trainers from Jimmy Choo, I know they are extravagant but they are also awesome. Nuff said.

6. Tom Ford eye pallete – I had this as a gift too, its well worth the money, the colours in the pallette are super shimmery and cute. The perfect everyday spring colours.

 

The views above are entirely my owna nd I have not been sponsored or endorsed to promote these products.

So what are your go to items of clothing? Do you have any favourites? Leave me a comment because I’d love to get inspired!