4/30/2015

Slimming World - Week 3 & 4


I am a now a month in on Slimming World and although I have had a few blips here and there on a whole I am still feeling very motivated.

I decided to put together a double post this week as I didn't have chance to update last week as I was so busy with other posts but I'm here now!

Week 3
I knew week 3 was going to be a tricky one for me because we had our Nan's 80th birthday meal to attend. It was a Michelin Star restaurant and all the food and drink was already paid for. I knew I was going to have a major cheat day and I did! A three course meal and a whole bottle of pinot grigo to wash it down with! 

I also had some other naughty treats that weekend so it was no surprise that when I stepped on the scales I had maintained. I was lucky that I didn't put anything on really so I had to brush it off and start fresh.



Week 4

This week I feel like I've been really strict with myself when it comes to what I've been eating and we have been out almost every day on long walks. There has even been some days where I didn't have half the syns I am allowed but I wasn't hungry and there's no point in eating for eating sake, heck that's how I'm in this predicament now! Ha ha. 

I feel like I've had some sort of epiphany lately because I used to see Slimming World as a diet and that's where I was going wrong. It's not a quick fix diet that you do, loose weight and that's that. It's a lifestyle change. It's really showing me how to eat the right things and in a balanced way. I feel refreshed and motivated to do this now. I can do it! 


The weigh in

I was feeling optimistic stepping on the scales and was pleased to see that I had lost 2lb!

After maintaining the week before ideally I would of liked to of lost more but 2lb is 2lb and takes me to an 8lb loss in 4 weeks. Roughly 42lb's to go! 






Super Busy Mum

4/29/2015

Mummy & Me - April


We are at the end of April already, wow. How did that happen? April has been a great month for us, we've had so much fun. The weather has been perfect and we have been spending most out time outdoors, exploring and going on long walks. There's something about those first few weeks of sun after a gloomy Winter isn't there? 




Here is our photo for April. We had drove to St Anne's for the afternoon as the weather was fantastic. Noah had been to the beach before but had never put his toes in sand. I was excited to see how he would find it and it's safe to say he hated it. He physically cringed and clung to me every time I attempted to stand him on the sand. We ended up putting his shoes back on after a while so he would have a toddle about. What are they like?!

It's rather embarrassing that I am wearing the same dress than I did in last months photo but I wasn't thinking that far ahead. The photo was a candid one too as I didn't know Nick was taking it. I was trying to show Noah that sand is nothing to worry about and as you can tell by his face he wasn't having any of it! 

See you next month! 


Nicola... Life Through My Eyes

5 Simple Ways to Save Money


Being an adult is expensive! You don't fully understand how much everything costs until you have flown the nest and jumped head first into the deep end. It's safe to say it was one huge wake up call when Nick and I started renting properties six years ago, we couldn't believe how many bills we had to pay. Throw in a mortgage and a child, take away one of our pay checks and we still feel that way but we have learnt how to manage and save money here and there.


Sell your stuff.
This is a no brainer but one of the easiest and quickest ways to earn and save money. If we don't use it, need it or want to save it I usually get rid. If I don't donate it to charity I usually sell on eBay or local selling pages.

Use cashback websites.
I am relatively new to cashback websites but after hearing so many people rave about them I knew I had to give it a try. I signed up with Top Cashback a few months ago and have already cashed in £60 and this is just by making my regular purchases online! If you would like to sign up too, simply click here

Set up a standing order.
We have three different bank accounts between us and have a standing order that is paid out every week which goes directly into an account that we do not have a card for. Even if it's just as little as £10 a week it all adds up and only being able to access it online helps prevent little splurges when out shopping.

Use Banking Software. 
If you are easily confused like I am when it comes to banking, savings, incomings and outgoings then perhaps financial software is for you. We have had to seek outside help before when it came to our mortgage and savings and it was a big help to us. 

Visit Comparison websites.
Another easy way of saving money is by checking comparison websites before committing to any insurance, energy, internet or tv provider contracts. You can simply source out the best deals and usually buy through your cashback website too. By doing this you are not just saving money but earning a little cashback too, it's a win win situation. 


Do you have any tips when it comes to saving money? 

4/28/2015

Paddy's Bathroom - Review


Today I would like to introduce you to Paddy's Bathroom

You have all heard of Ella's Kitchen right? Well, Paddy Kitchen is brought to us by the founder of Ella's Kitchen.

Being such big fans of Ella's we were delighted when we were sent some of the products from the new range to try out. 



Here's what we received

Squirty Stuff - Squishy Mangoes
This product is for hair and body which is great for a wriggly toddler who doesn't like having his hair washed. The bottle was quite hard to get into though I must admit.
RRP: £4.49


Stuff for Hands - Squeaky Clean Lemons
As it says on the bottle this stuff is for hands. It foams up lovely, leaving hands soft, clean and smelling like lemons.
RRP: £4.49


Bubbly Stuff - Smells like Tangy Tangerines
This is by far my favourite from the range! The scent of the tangerines is gorgeous and when used in the bath the smell seems to circulate the house leaving every room with a yummy fruity scent. It bubbles up nicely without much effort or encouragement.
RRP: £5.99


Stuff for Shiny Hair - Smells like Squeezy Lemons
Noah's hair is very coarse and prone to frizz so this gentle, everyday shampoo is perfect for him. Such a lovely lemony scent too.
RRP: £4.49



What we like:

They are eye catching and make bath time fun. 


The scent of every product is heavenly.

No nasties and vegetarian friendly.

These products not only smell divine and look fantastic but they are kind to my toddlers skin too. 



What we don't like:

The bottle of Squirty Stuff in the blue bottle was almost impossible to suss out. I actually had to read another review to suss out how to use it correctly.


I think they are too expensive and would buy a cheaper alternative. I just feel that in this market the product could be a bit more competitively priced.


Have you tried Paddy's Bathroom yet?



- We were sent these products for the purpose of this review however all opinions are my own. 

50 things that make me happy


Last week I was tagged by the lovely Nat from The Diary of an Unexpectant Mother to take part in the 50 things that make me happy post. So here I am and here it is, 50 things that make me happy.

1. Noah.
2. Our home.
3. Nick.
4. Our cats.
5. Photographs and photography.

6. Holidays.
7. Summer.
8. American TV shows.
9. Cloth nappies.

10. Family.
11. The sun.
12. Noah's smile and giggle.
13. Tea and toast.

14. Music.
15. Reading.
16. Travelling.
17. Days out.
18. Animals. 

19. Diet coke.
20. Chocolate.
21. Children.
22. Movies.
23. Hot chocolate.
24. Social media.
25. Slimming World.
26. Popcorn.
27. 
Blogging.
28. Instagram.
29. Fresh air.
30. Beaches.
31. Watching my son grow up.
32. Cuddles.
33. Cocktails.
34. Songs and singing. 

35. Cake.
36. Good friends.
37. Doing a good deed.
38. Candles!
39. Making plans for the future.
40. BBQ's.
41. Saving up.
42. Sleeping.
43. Spring.
44. Supporting a charity.
45. My phone.
46. Reality TV. 

47. New perfume.
48. Making memories.
49. Competitions.
50. Having a good day. 


What makes you happy?

I tag:

Nicola from A Life Through My Eyes
Hayley from Sparkles and Stretchmarks
Shaz from A Pinch of Shaz

Emily from Emily and Indiana

4/27/2015

Noah - 17 Months Old


Character
I said it last month and I will say it again, there's no denying he's a toddler anymore. Wow, he really is his own little person now and boy don't I know it. He's such a funny little boy and he will do anything to make you laugh, it's a quality that I adore in him. He certainly knows his own mind and knows what he wants and how to get it. He also knows Mummy doesn't let him get his own way all the time and will often go and work on Daddy instead, monkey! He's got heaps loads of personality and he is such a little individual, I love him. 


Size
He's seriously shot up this month, it's crazy. People are always commenting on how tall he is but I don't think he is? He is still wearing 12-18 month clothes and they have plenty of room. Surely if he was big he would be in the next size up? 


Health
Noah had gastroenteritis a few weeks back which wasn't pleasant. He was off his food, had a runny bottom and was being sick in the night. It lasted about a week but thankfully he's been fine ever since.
On the teething front he has been great especially how he is cutting three molars at the same time! Counting the molars he now has 10 teeth, we are getting there! 



Feeding
At the moment we can't seem to fill him up. He has three meals a day with numerous snacks throughout the day, a bottle in the morning and a bottle at night. He drinks lots of water too. He pretty much eats anything you place in front of him bar jelly and cereal. I think he must be going through yet another growth spurt as he is like a bottomless pit.



Sleep
We've had one or two rough nights when Noah hasn't been feeling well but on a whole he has been great. He usually sleeps for at least 12 hours a night and has a two hour nap in the afternoon. At the moment he loves his sleep and food, he certainly takes after his Mummy! 



Speech
Noah knows around 20 words now but will only say them when he wants to. He's always been vocal but this month he has been trying to converse so much more and will babble away in baby language. I am always trying to encourage more words and we are using flashcards at the moment just to get him used to the sight of them. 

He learnt to say Sadie this month which has pleased his Auntie so much! 




Milestones and new tricks


Noah can now Jump.

He likes to stomp his feet and do a little jig to make us all laugh.

He has had a growth spurt and can now reach on top of the kitchen work surface! 

He is always trying to dress himself or put on his shoes.

He seems to understand everything! The other day I said look who is behind you and he turned and looked. How does he even know what that means?! 


Likes
Going out, going for a walk, exploring. 

Walking, running, jumping. 
He loves to make people laugh and will do anything to make you giggle.
Rummaging through cupboards.

He is obsessed with cars and signs and will point them out when we are on our walks. 
Kiki. 
Singing and dancing. 
His books. 
Fruit. 
Other children, he's always trying to befriend others especially older children.
His cousin Tristan. 
Animals especially cats and birds.
Being applauded. 
Sleeping.
Apples.


Dislikes
Having his hair or face washed.
Having to go home when he's been outside. 
Sand.
Being told no. 


4/26/2015

My Sunday Photo - 17/52



OneDad3Girls

Project 365 - Week 17 - 17/52


19th April - 25th April / Week 17


109
Sunday afternoon I spent prepping for Real Nappy Week 2015. Sorting the nappies, planning blog posts and so on. Noah had his usual Sunday afternoon as his Nanna's. 


110
Monday was the start of our very first Real Nappy Week and our first nappy of the week was Hey Diddle Diddle from Totsbots! This was a nappy they kindly sent me to try out and it's been great so far, post coming soon. The print is one of my favourite's too, ever so cute.   

111
Tuesday saw glorious weather and we made the most of it by walking to our local nature reserve and park. We had lunch outside in the sun and it seriously felt like we were in Spain!


112
Wednesday we met up with friends and one of her boys. We had a picnic on the grass and watched the boys toddle about together. We then went for a very long walk and tired the boys out. 


113
Thursday saw us at the park again! It's a good walk to get there and it felt good that I managed to get there three days in a row. I took Noah on his SmarTrike and Daddy met us after he finished work. 

114
Friday I felt a little lethargic and a little nostalgic too so Nick took Noah out and I decided to be productive. I sorted through all Noah's old clothes ready for the attic. I did feel a little teary looking through all his teeny tiny newborn clothes. 

115
Saturday we went shopping and visited family. Noah loved trotting around the shops and he picked up a pocket square and managed to sneak it in our basket! A true gent. A bowler hat and a pocket square! 

What have you been up to this week?

TheBoyandMe's 365 Linky

4/25/2015

Real nappy week, sunshine and netflix - 17/52 - #littleloves

Read
I'm still reading Divergent but I haven't got very far into into it yet. I keep losing track of the time and it's always way too late to read very far. I really need to make more time for it because I loved the film so much. 

Watched
As a member of the Netflix Stream Team I am always having a browse through for new shows and films to watch and I stumbled across a Netflix original show this week, it's called Bloodline. I'm about half way through the series now and it's been really gripping but in a slow and tender way, if that makes sense. I can't wait to see how everything is going to turn out. 



Wore
It's been scorching hot and that meant I was able to wear dresses without a jacket or a cardigan, it's been lovely. I have still been wearing tights and leggings though because I don't want to frighten the whole of Lancashire with my bright white legs!

Noah has been enjoying the sun too and has been slathered with factor 50 every single day. I love seeing him in his little shorts and tshirts with his skinny little arms and legs on show. 



Heard
"All of us deserve the right to be loved for who we are" - Bruce Jenner

I have just finished watching the Bruce Jenner interview where he bravely announced to the world that he is a woman. This quote in particular really tugged at my heart strings and I am in total awe of him. I hope his actions and announcement gives courage to others who feel the same way.

Made
I made a little progress with organising the house, if that counts for something? Ever since the move and the renovation everything has been up in the air and nothing really has a place just yet. The house is somewhat organised but there are things that have been irritating me and one of those were the bags and bags of Noah's old clothes that I just stashed away in the closet. On Friday I decided to sort through it all and put everything into size order and I felt so emotional looking at all his teeny tiny clothes, he's huge now! 



And lastly
This week is Real Nappy Week, in case you didn't know! It's been my first and it's been so much fun taking part in all the offers, competitions and general cloth nappy celebrations! 


4/24/2015

Bambino Mio - Real Nappy Week 2015 - #RNW2015


A few weeks ago I received a rather exciting email from Bambino Mio. They were gearing up to launch their new range of nappies and wanted to send me the new designs to preview before the big unveil. I had not used Bambino Mio's before but had heard so many great things about them and their Miosolo's. I would of been daft to refuse and I literally couldn't wait!


Bambino Mio posted a photo on their Instagram informing myself and a few other lucky bloggers that our extra special deliveries were on their way which just added to the excitement! I have to admit I did open the package as soon as it arrived, they did say we could preview! ;)


When I opened the box and this is what I saw! Big, bold and beautiful patterns that were so eye catching that I couldn't help but be immediately impressed. The four designs from left to right are called; Forest Friends, Cheeky Monkey, Circus Time and Pandamonium. 



I've had a hard time deciding which design is my favourite so I have chosen two! I love the colour of Cheeky Monkey as I haven't seen many in that shade before. I probably prefer Forest Friends on a whole as I not only love the colours on the nappy but each character and image is absolutely adorable. 

After using Miosolo's for the past few weeks I have to say how much I love them. Out of the brands that I have tried so far they are my firm favourite. They not only look gorgeous but are high quality, soft and wash and dry well too.

New to cloth and want to try Bambino Mio for yourself? You can purchase a starter 
Bambino Mio Miosolo Nappy Kit for just £74.67 which is a bargain for 6 Miosolo's. 

Which is you favourite design?

4/23/2015

Competition: Win 2 Close Parent Pop-In's! #RNW2015



It's Real Nappy Week and we have been loving it. It has been our first and we have loved taking part in all the celebration, the competitions and the offers! It's been so much fun.

To celebrate #RNW2015 I am offering the chance for you guys to win not one, but two Close Parent Pop-In Nappies

This time I am hosting the competition over on Facebook so simply click the link and head over there! Good luck! 

To celebrate Real Nappy Week I have teamed up with Close Parent to give away two Close Parent Pop-In Nappy's to one...

Baba+Boo - Go Banana's - Real Nappy Week 2015 - #RNW2015



If you tune into the blog regularly you will know that at the end of last year I decided to finally switch to cloth nappies. I so wish we had made the switch sooner but better late than never.

Today I thought I would share one of baba+boo's new prints with you guys. A few weeks ago I was lucky enough to be sent two of the new prints from their new range and the Go Banana's was one of them. It's such a bold, bright and eye catching print and very different to other designs that I have seen. I think it look super cute on my monkey's bum and I need to get my hands on more of the new range!  





- I was sent this nappy in the run up to the live launch. I was not asked to review.


Trunki Toddlepak - Review


When it came to walking, Noah took his time. He didn't learnt to walk until he was 14 months old. Once he took those first few steps it was like a switch had been flipped and he was running and jumping in a matter of weeks. 

Once he was steady on his feet indoors the next step was getting him on his feet outdoors and the Trunki Toddlepak really helped us at that stage and still continues to do now at 17 months. 




The Trunki Toddlepak is no simple and ordinary reign as it can be used in two different ways. When your toddler is still a little wobbly you can use the training reign and once they have found their feet you can switch to the leading reign. This is such a fantastic feature as the training reign was such a big help to us when Noah was still a bit clumsy, it saved a lot of scuffed knee's. 

There are 7 different Toddlepak's to choose from and I have to admit I did struggle deciding on one because they were all very cute. After deliberating between a couple of the designs I decided to go for the Lion.


What we like

The option of training or leading rein is ingenious. 

The sheer amount of designs they have to choose from and very cute one's at that. 

I love how the reins fit like a backpack and is padded at the front making it comfortable for our tots.

Reflective patches, a very nice touch.

It certainly stands out from the rest of it's competitors and there really isn't a fault with it. 


What we didn't like

I do find the safety clip a bit fiddly but better safe that sorry! I don't want it to come open when walking a long a main road.

I personally think the price of £17.99 is reasonable but I can see how others may think it's a bit pricey. 


Do you use toddler reins? Which design would you go for?  



- I was sent this product for the purpose of this review however all opinions are my own. 

4/22/2015

Create a Mini Allotment for a Summer of Fun


Now that winter has officially faded away and the good old British summer is fast approaching it is time to prepare our gardens for the wonderful fun that can be had as a family.

Encouraging the little ones to get outside in the sunshine and enjoy the garden can be a great way of keeping them entertained all while teaching them about the wonders of nature. By giving your children their own allotment to manage you are giving them the responsibility of looking after their own plants and flowers and you can also make it an exciting event when they grow something tasty!


Prepare
The first thing to do to get your mini allotment looking both bold and beautiful this summer is to get rid of those weeds! No garden looks glamorous with those gloomy, dull looking weeds lurking in the saddened soil. So with the help of the little ones pull the weeds out and lay down some fresh soil which will get the flower beds looking fresh. The kids will love getting muddy and feeling the mud between their fingers.


Plant
Have you brought your bulbs and plants ready to plant into your freshly prepared garden? If not, to pop down to the local garden Centre with the children and let them pick something which they enjoy looking at daily, something which will brighten up the space and is easy to maintain such as; Sunflowers, Sweet peas, Californian poppy’s, Pansy’s and Marigolds. 

Alternatively if you’re looking to encourage healthy eating, pick out some fruit and vegetable seeds such as these that will educate your little ones on where there food comes from. Plus they’ll love feeling proud of themselves as they pick their home grown food for dinner.


Enjoy
Once the basics are done and the plants are planted think about what else could benefit the children in the garden. Helping them to craft a bird feeder such as this one, or some colourful bunting for the garden fences can all make the outside space feel more fun.

Remind them to keep on top of their little allotment throughout the summer with books at bedtime about the garden, and their own set of tools.

There are so many benefits for encouraging the little ones to enjoy the great outdoors, but if you feel stuck for inspiration do a little research on Pinterest or with Home Magazines. There are plenty of fun ways of making the garden more child-friendly than you may expect.


Have you started preparing your garden? Do you have any tips you would like to share?

4/21/2015

Our switch to cloth nappies - Real Nappy Week 2015 - #RNW2015


I have always been fascinated with cloth nappies and always admired the beautiful prints and array of different designs. That being said when I was pregnant with Noah I didn't really look into using them and automatically went with the norm which was disposables. 

As Noah got older I would think "I wish I had of given cloth a go.." and at 13 months old I thought well better late than never! After discussing reusable nappies with my good friend Kelly from More than just a Mummy I finally felt confident enough to make that leap and shortly after bought a dozen "cheapies" to get me started.

I intended to give cloth a try, a trial period sort to speak. I would see how I got on with them and then if I liked it, would buy more. At first I struggled to get the right fit and experienced many leaks but stuck with it and when I learnt to fit them correctly I then had no leaks whatsoever! When you switch from disposable to reusable you don't realise you fit a cloth nappy totally different, you don't know any better. Two months later and we are still using reusable nappies and absolutely love them. 

There are so many pro's to using cloth nappies and ditching the disposables, from saving money through to helping the environment but for me it's even more than that. Call me strange but I get such a good feeling from putting my son into a nice fluffy nappy. Stranger still I enjoy washing and preparing his nappies and find it very therapeutic. I just so wish I had started earlier on but like they say, better late than never!

I have amassed quite the collection of nappies since we started this year and probably now have around 30. My stash mainly consists of baba+boo, bambino mio and internet cheapies but I still want to try other brands too. It's true what they say, cloth nappies are an addiction! 


I plan on posting lots of cloth nappy related posts going forward but for now I will share my little introduction to cloth. If you are thinking of making the switch then do, it's never too late! 





Do you use cloth nappies or ever thought about trying them? How about linking up with the brand new #clothnappylove linky with More Than Just A Mummy and The Mummington Post? Hope to see you there!