8/20/2017

My Sunday Photo - 34/52



- Ava practising her sitting! She's getting so big and strong! 


OneDad3Girls

8/19/2017

Project 365 - Week 33/52


13th August - 19th August

13th August 2017

14th August 2017

15th August 2017

16th August 2017

17th August 2017

18th August 2017

19th August 2017

Another week has been and gone, it doesn't feel like two minutes ago that I was writing last weeks post. With Noah still being off nursery we've had no set routine again, this has it's advantages such as spontaneous trips out but the down side is that it's hard to be able to get Ava into any sort of nap routine with a boisterous three year old bounding around. We are all loving it though and it's bittersweet to know that he'll be going back to nursery full time in September, 8:30am-3pm on Mon, Tues, Weds and Thurs. He's got another year there and then he starts School, how scary is that?

Anyway, back on topic. We've had a great week again. Sunday was our usual family day out and we visited one of our favourite places again. We love going to Bowland Wild Boar park and go half a dozen times a year, so much so we are actually thinking of getting annual passes. The weather was lovely too, so glad we went and made the most of the sun.

Monday was quite easy going. Noah had a play date next door and stayed for tea. We then went food shopping and I went to Slimming World. I only lost -0.5lb this week but it's better than nothing and it does bring me to 14.5lb loss so far! On Tuesday I decided to take the kids over to see my Mum and Nanna just like last week, so it was a ride in the taxi and then a half hour journey on the train. You'd think it'd be hard work with two young children but it's really not, the most difficult part is making sure I've packed everything we need to take and getting everyone in the taxi. Again we had a lovely day with my Mum and then went to visit my Nanna.

Wednesday I invited Noah's friend around for a play date as he'd been there earlier in the week. They had lunch together and had a whale of a time the entire afternoon. Thursday was playgroup time and then another play date in the afternoon! Noah loves playing with his best friend who lives next door so it's always lovely for them to have that time together, they play really nicely and it keeps them both busy too. I think I managed to have a warm cup of tea!

Friday and Saturday we had two lazy days, which is unlike us. The weather has been so hit and miss though that it's kind of the perfect excuse to relax and do absolutely nothing. We did however go shopping and visit family, but nothing out of the ordinary!

What have you been up to this week?


8/18/2017

Teletubbies Shuffle 'n' Giggle Ping - Review



Can you believe that it's been 20 years since the Teletubbies first hit our screens? I was 9 years old when they aired the very first episode and I remember watching it with my younger siblings, we were all transfixed. It wasn't long after when Teletubbies fever hit the UK and pretty much everyone I knew was after a Teletubbies toy for Christmas and it'd sold out everywhere! Although I think my Mum managed to get hold of a Po for my baby sister, lucky Sadie!

Teletubbies fill me to the brim with nostalgia and it delights me that they are still around today so that my own children get to enjoy them too. Not only are Teletubbies still here 20 years later, but back in 2015 we were introduced to the Tiddletubbies, baby Teletubbies and boy are they cute! When I was offered the chance to review a toy from the new Tiddletubbies range I was extremely excited, as you've probably guessed!


We weren't sure which toy was going to arrive as it was out of two different options, then selected at random so this added to the excitement when the toy was being delivered. On opening the box we discovered a Shuffle 'n' Giggle Ping which is from Character and retails at £24.99. My first impression was that this could be the cutest toy I've ever seen and I wanted to hide her and keep her for myself! As soon as I got it out the box Ava started reaching for her, probably because of how bright and colourful she is.



The Shuffle 'n' Giggle Ping is suitable from 18 months and is such a clever, interactive toy and would entertain a whole array of different age ranges. Ping is made from soft plush material which make her irresistible to kiss and cuddle (or latch on to if your child is anything like Ava!) She has big brown eyes, a sweet little smile and the signature Teletubbies antennae.

Simply press Ping's back and she shuffles and crawls a long floor. When I did this for the first time both Noah and Ava's eyes lit up, they couldn't help but smile and they both wanted to grab hold of her. Ping also babbles and giggles which never fails to make Ava smile, she's so enamoured by her.



All in all I think this is a fantastic toy, one which can grow with your child and I think it costs a very reasonable price too. Noah and Ava have played with Ping ever since she arrived and that says it all really, we know how fast children and babies lose interest in their toys! In particular, I think Ava will grow to love this toy even more as she gets older, especially once she starts crawling herself, which won't be long now! I know she'll be crawling after Ping in no time!

Are you a fan of the Teletubbies? 
Do you have a little one that would like this toy too? 


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

8/16/2017

Things To Consider When Buying A Rug For The Family Home



Living with a family often means that practicality becomes your main focus when it comes to your home. Over recent years, the interiors world has become far more accommodating to family life by incorporating both practicality and style. A home isn’t complete without a rug, they tie together themes in a room and add that welcoming, comfortable atmosphere. Although, if you have kids, it can be hard to know what you need to be looking for. Here is a list put together by the team at Rug Mountain to help you find that perfect rug.

Durability and Pile Length
One of the most important features your rug must have is the ability to survive in the family home and this puts durability at the top of your list. The rug you choose needs to be able to handle the busy environment of the family home without diminishing over time. It's best therefore to avoid rugs with a longer pile. The pile length refers to how long the material is. For example, a shaggy or sheepskin rug has a long pile thanks to their fluffy texture. Although longer pile rugs are beautifully soft, they aren't ideal when you've kid kids running around or playing on them all day. This causes the softer texture to wear down quicker and ruin that gorgeous feel. A deeper pile will also retain dirt and dust more so than a shorter pile rug. This isn’t great for the little ones who spend a lot of time on their hands and knees playing or crawling around. Similarly, longer pile rugs can’t be vacuumed as easily as this destroys the material over a long time period. Ideally, you therefore want a low pile rug that’s easier to maintain, can be vacuumed and can handle a higher usage.

Easy to Clean
The number one factor that comes up time and time again. Cleaning. No one enjoys it, but unfortunately with a family this can be your number one concern. When choosing a rug, try to find one that is made from a material that is easily salvageable from those food and drink spills. However, this brings with it good news. As a general tip, you want to be avoiding more expensive rugs. This is because expensive rugs are made from higher quality but more delicate materials which makes them a nightmare to clean. A simple nylon or acrylic rug is you best bet as they can handle cleaning products far easier than their expensive counterparts.

Colour
The colour of your rug is a chance for you to work with personalisation and pick something that reflects your home. You might want a rug that blends in with your floor or alternatively maybe you’re after a pop of colour for a dramatic flare. However, if you’ve got a family, there are some colours your should try to avoid to increase the life of your rug. It comes as no surprise to learn that the paler the rug, the more likely it is to show up dirt and stains. Because of this, try to avoid white rugs, for obvious reasons! If you’ve got your heart set on a lighter rug try instead a brown, cream of beige for a neutral palette. Your safest bet would be a rug with more colour, as this will show up dirt far less and can mask those odd imperfections far more easily.

What do you look for when buying a rug for the family home?

- This is a PR collaboration. 

8/15/2017

Ava - 5 Months Old




Ava is now five months old and time is flying by way too quickly for my liking, can I not hit pause for a moment? I can remember writing Noah's 5 month update like it was only yesterday so it's crazy to think that now Ava is that age too and Noah is 4 in just 3 months time!



Character
Oh, she is the sweetest thing you will ever meet. I absolutely adore her, so much so that sometimes I think my heart could just burst. From the moment she wakes up until she goes to bed she's a delight, even when going through a leap. She's very rarely grumpy or whiny and is so easy to please. There's nothing she loves more than being cuddled, kissed or being sung too and she likes lots of physical contact. The only time she really protests is when she is having her clothes changed but that's literally it! She's such a good girl.



Size
She's a big girl, quite similar to how Noah was at the same age. She weighs roughly 16lb and is in a mix of 3-6 and 6-9 month clothing, depending on the fit and where the clothes are from as I find everything varies so much. She's very long and quite chunky, she's solid! She has the sweetest chunky thighs, bum and cheeks! I could just gobble her up.



Health
Nothing to write home about this month when it comes to her health, everything has been fine. Not even a patch of cradle cap or nappy rash, she's been great.

 
Feeding

Breastfeeding is going really well and I'm so happy with how our journey has been so far. I feel so fortunate that everything has just gone so smoothly because I had my breastfeeding fears before she was born but I really didn't need to fret. I still feed her on demand but recently I've noticed she spaces her feeds out a lot more and feeds for longer at the breast. She can go between 2-3 hours in the day and at night it's usually every 3-4 hours, sometimes longer. She's had a couple of cluster feeding days here and there as she is currently going through a huge leap but it's been fine. I express my milk every now and again but not as much as I was last month because it can be so time consuming. I've also recently introduced some baby porridge because at supper time she would cry seeing Noah have his, she was salivating and reaching for the spoon in a frenzy. I couldn't avoid it any longer so usually everyday she will have a little bowl of baby porridge for either supper or breakfast and she absolutely loves it. I'm so excited to start properly weaning her in just a few weeks time. I have a feeling she will be a foodie just like her brother.


Sleeping
She's her usual when it comes to sleep and is not yet sleeping through but this is to be expected with her being breastfed. She does however settle a lot easier at night now. We cuddle up in bed, I play her lullaby music or sing to her and feed her to sleep. I love that time, where everything is quiet and relaxing, a little bit of time just for us. I usually lay with her for half an hour and then pop her into her snuzpod and she usually sleeps until I go to bed a couple of hours later. I think I disturb her when I go to bed or she can sense that I'm there so she usually wants me to feed her again and she will doze off back to sleep. She feeds between 2-3 times during the night but just goes straight back to sleep so it's not bad really. Naps are still very hit and miss but hopefully we can get into some sort of routine once Noah is back at nursery as I'll have more time to try and stick to one and there won't be a three year old waking her up!


Milestones and new tricks
* Rolling Over. Ava can now roll over and is such a whizz at doing it, she's over in a flash and is so proud of herself when she does it.
* Sitting. She's pretty much there with sitting, already! She can sit unaided for minutes at a time and is so steady although I'd never leave her unattended or without a dozen cushions all around her. 
* Crawling. I don't think it will be long until she's crawling. She's already wiggling about and can move about here and there and she tries to shove herself forward. It's like she's hit so many milestones all at the same time!
* She now recognises her name and turns to you when you say it. 
* She face plants into my boobs when she wants feeding, it's hilarious. 
* Always on the go! Although she can't get move herself about she's so determined to move and is always lunging forward and grabbing things.
* Vocal, she is so loud! She's constantly figuring out new sounds and noises and has the most piercing screech.


Likes and dislikes
Ava has so many likes and loves! She loves; Mummy, Daddy and Noah. Other children. She is fascinated with animals and is constantly watching and stroking our cat and her Nan's dogs. She likes; Peppa Pig, singing, songs, cuddles, kisses, books, rolling around, playing with Noah and his toys, cuddle and feeding time, Mummy's bed, her toys, sophie la girafe, trees, watching her brother on the swings, watching her brother do anything, cuddly smiles in the morning, porridge, blowing raspberries, her jumperoo, bath time! She doesn't like being in her car seat or having her clothes changed.



8/14/2017

Good Bubble Bath Set - Review & Competition



When it comes to bathing my children I always reach for products which I believe will be kind and gentle to their skin, just like every other parent out there. I've tried so many brands which are currently on the market, some which are now favourites and some that I probably wouldn't use again. Good Bubble was a brand that was new to me, one that I noticed through the blogging grapevine after reading a couple of reviews here and there. I thought their products sounded fantastic so when the chance came to review them myself I was excited to try them out.  

In case you didn't know, Good Bubble was created here in England and is a lovely family run business. They pride themselves on concocting natural and fun bath products which kids will love to use, making bath time so much more fun.Their gentle formulations are rich in nutrients and free from harsh chemicals which really nourishes your little one’s hair and skin, yours too if you steal a bit of the kids bubble bath like I do! Each product smells absolutely divine and a little bit goes such a long way too. 


We received the Clean as a Bean Shampoo, Smoothly Softly Conditioner and Super Bubbly Bubble Bath to review and for the past couple of weeks have been using them at every bath time, for both Noah and Ava.

We adore all three products that we were sent and once everything has run out I'll be buying it all again, that's for sure! The fact that they are made from 98% natural ingredients sits really well with me and allowed me to bath Ava with Noah without worrying that it would dry out her delicate and young skin. The shampoo and conditioner is fabulous too and has been ideal for Noah's coarse hair. It's made his hair so much more manageable and soft, not to mention he smells absolutely delicious! Good Bubble has really ticked all the boxes and I wouldn't hesitate to recommend to a friend.


Prices for Good Bubble products start at £3.39 for the character wash mitts through to £8.00 for the gift sets which I think is excellent value for money. Speaking of gift sets how would you like to win one? I have two sets to give away here on the blog! To enter all you need to do is use the Gleam form below. Good luck and don't forget to enter my other blog competitions!

Good Bubble Gift Set

Terms & Conditions.                                                                                                 
1. There will be 2 winners who will each win 1 gift set.
2. Prize sent directly by the PR. 
3. Competition ends 10/09/17
4. Incomplete entries with be disqualified. 
5. UK entries only.

8/12/2017

Project 365 - Week 32/52


6th August - 12th August

6th August 2017

7th August 2017

8th August 2017

9th August 2017

10th August 2017

11th August 2017

12th August 2017

We've had such a busy week this week, it's been none stop but it's been great! We've all really enjoyed ourselves and I hope we can have a similar type of week next week too. It's great to have a change from our usual nursery routine so I've really been trying to make the most of Noah's time off.

Sunday was a bit rubbish when it came to the weather so what we could do was a little limited. In the end we decided to go bowling, all four of us. Ava napped the majority of the time which worked out good because we were able to get stuck right into our game and it was lots of fun (even if I did lose!) They also have a mini arcade there too so Noah was in his element playing on the games, 10p and grabber machines.

On Monday my Mum came to visit for the afternoon which is always welcomed, it's lovely to see her and she's also a big help with both kids. It's nice to have her come around and the kids really like seeing her. She had lunch here, a brew and a bit of a natter and then she took Noah in town for an hour or so. In the evening I had my Slimming World weigh in and lost 2.5lb which brings me to my 1 stone loss! Bye bye baby weight! Tuesday we hopped into a taxi and paid a visit to my Mother in Laws because she has all Noah's cousins over the holidays and Noah loves to play with them. 

On Wednesday I decided to take the children over to Blackburn to visit my Mum and Nanna. We had to get another taxi and then a train but it was so straight forward and easy that we plan on doing it again next week. We had such a great day, went to the park, visited some charity shops, bought lunch, played at my Mums and then went to visit my Nanna, who has just turned 87!

On Thursday I took the kids to playgroup which was nice, but it wasn't very busy. Noah didn't mind though because he enjoyed ham sandwiches, carrot sticks and cupcakes. He also loved bouncing on the trampoline and jumping in the ball pit. 
We then had a family trip to the dentist on Friday, exciting! Not! Everything was fine and Noah got a big Spider-Man sticker for being a good boy and letting Mummy and Daddy brush his teeth twice a day. Saturday we visited family but in the morning we started our attic renovation, which is a little scary! Such a hectic but fantastic week!

What have you been up to this week? 

8/09/2017

3 Idyllic Places To Visit In The UK



As a work from home Mummy of two I find myself stretched very thin on a daily basis. Noah is three years old and Ava has just turned five months old and as much of a privilege it is to be able to stay at home and spend every moment with them, it can be difficult at times, especially when it comes to finding the time to do my work. I often find myself staying up till a ridiculous time at night (1:30am last night!) trying to catch up on the things which I need to do and with Ava waking in the night numerous times to feed I'm continuously exhausted. That being said I really wouldn't have it any other way. Being able to stay at home has so many benefits, the main one being that I've not missed any of my their milestones, I've seen every single one of them and it feels amazing to know that. They are only young for such a short amount of time so I'm enjoying every little moment, every tired little moment.


I want to plan a little break away soon, this time just for Nick and I so when I was asked to write about the places I'd like to visit in the UK I was delighted to go ahead, perhaps give myself some inspiration. I can't remember the last time the two of us did something on our own, so I think it's time that we remind ourselves than we aren't just Mummy and Daddy but we are Nick and Jen too. It'll be exciting to take a little break away, just the two of us, to switch off and unwind. Great Little Breaks do wonders for time away and I'm excited to start planning and to hopefully spoil myself a little. Here are the three places that I'd love to visit in the UK.

The Lake District
We've visited the Lakes before as it's not very far from where we live and although we haven't been that many times it still feels like a home away from home. It's the most picturesque place with gorgeous buildings and I can't help but feel utterly relaxed whenever I go. The residents of the Lake District are also really friendly and welcome you to their beautiful district with open arms.

Pembrokeshire 
This is another place that we've visited before but it was a fleeting trip as we weren't able to spend a lot of time there. It was such a shame because it looked so relaxing and just my cup of tea. The Pembrokeshire Coast National Park and Tenby are on my to visit list, perhaps we will go to Tenby with the kids though as it seems such a family oriented place.

Devon
I've wanted to visit Devon ever since I was a child as a lot of my friends would frequently take a vacation down there and would show me the photo's they'd taken on their disposable cameras. I love the fact that although it's in the UK you could actually forget and think you're abroad, in the right weather conditions that is! I'd also love to spot a puffin or two, they are my favourite birds!


Do you have any suggestions on places we could visit here in the UK? I'd love to hear them and add them to my list.
- This is a collaborative post.

8/08/2017

Win A Kindle Fire Kids & The New Ben & Holly Apps - Competition



As I type this it's half term and the weather is miserable outside. It can be hard to juggle everything at once sometimes, especially when you are cooped up indoors with two young children who both need so much of your attention. That's where our tablet and the iPad comes to the rescue. I think with moderation they can be excellent not just for entertainment but for learning too. This half term I've found myself encouraging Noah to play quietly on it for half an hour in the afternoon whilst I attempt to get Ava to nap upstairs, though my efforts are usually futile because she doesn't sleep! 

With this in mind I'm always looking for new and exciting apps and games for Noah to try out and there’s a lot to celebrate in the Little Kingdom, with two brand new apps, Magic School and Big Star Fun, available to download now!


In BIG STAR FUN your little ones can join Princess Holly, Ben and Gaston as they fly through the Little Kingdom! There are 4 interactive games with different difficulty levels that young players can enjoy - plus a special reward STICKER BOOK!  Featuring the popular characters and music from the much-loved TV show - this enchanting app offers children a fun and interactive experience they can enjoy time and time again. Available to buy here on both Apple and Android.


Budding little Elves and Fairies can now join Ben and Holly at MAGIC SCHOOL! In this app they learn magic through a variety of creative and magical games, where they can graduate and earn their very own Magic Certificate. Fun activities include: Wand Creator, Wand Practice, Potion Making, Magic Picnic, Box of Burps, Magic Jelly and End of School Photo.  With in-game instructions and encouragement from Nanny Plum, Ben & Holly's MAGIC SCHOOL is guaranteed to offer hours of magical mayhem and fun! Available to here but for Apple only. 

To celebrate the launch of these two fantastic apps I've teamed up with P2 Games to give away a Kindle Fire Kids worth £99.99 to one lucky winner. Not only that but there will be 10 runner ups who will each win a copy of the Big Star Fun App too! What are you waiting for? To enter all you need to do is use the Gleam form below. Good luck and don't forget to enter my other blog competitions!

x1 Kindle Fire Kids With Big Star Fun App & 10 Big Star Fun App Runner Up Prizes

Terms & Conditions.                                                                                                 
1. There will be 1 winner who wins the Kindle Fire Kids & App then 10 runners up of the App.
2. Prize sent directly by the PR. 
3. Competition ends 03/09/17
4. Incomplete entries with be disqualified. 
5. UK entries only.

8/05/2017

Project 365 - Week 31/52


30 July - 5th August

30th July 2017

31st July 2017

1st August 2017

2nd August 2017

3rd August 2017

4th August 2017


5th August 2017


We've had a great week this week although it only feels like yesterday that I was writing last weeks post! Noah is off nursery with it being half term so our routine has gone out the window but it's nice to have a bit of down time. Funny I say that though because we've not really had much down time this week as I've wanted to squeeze as much fun into our week as I could.

On Sunday instead of our usual family day out we just went for a nice stroll and to the park with the kids, sometimes it's nice to have a change in our usual plans. On Monday morning I noticed a playgroup near us was open and decided to take the kids and invite my next door neighbour and her daughter too. It was nice to take Noah to a playgroup again because I miss all that now he goes to nursery. He had such a fantastic time that I'll be taking him next week that's for sure. On Tuesday we went out for a little walk and then had a play date with Noah's best friend, they kept each other busy and make a right mess of the house!

Wednesday was a relaxing and lazy sort of day and Thursday I needed to get out the house so took both children to a local soft play centre. The place was heaving with it being half term so Noah was a little overwhelmed because we usually go when it's off peak and a bit quieter. He was saying he didn't want to play because of it being so chaotic but he soon changed his mind when he saw not one but three children from his nursery, so he went off to play with them. It's so lovely to see that such young children can form friendships so early on, it's super endearing to watch. After a couple of hours at soft play Nick came to pick us up after he finished work and we drove over to visit my Nanna as it was her birthday and she has just turned 87! It was nice to surprise her with a visit and she really enjoyed seeing the children, her great grandchildren.

Both Friday and Saturday have been a little easy going and nothing to write home about really. The usual really of walks, shopping and visiting family.

What have you been up to this week?