3/27/2017

Mummy & Me - March



Our baby was due in February so when writing last months Mummy and Me post I explained how I thought she'd have arrived by then but lo and behold I was still pregnant. When I look at last months post it feels like a life time ago when I wrote it, not just a mere 31 days. That's the thing with pregnancy, as it draws to a close you are desperate to meet your baby and are looking forward to not feeling fat, swollen and sore anymore but as soon as you have the baby you miss it right away, well I did anyway. For me I think it's more to do with the fact that we are stopping at two children and the knowledge that I won't feel those kicks ever again but on the flip side I'm glad not to have to go through another traumatic labour! 

That being said the past month has been a huge blur, a blur of absolute bliss! I'm absolutely besotted with my baby Ava and somehow love Noah even more deeply since her arrival. So for this months Mummy and Me posts I have two selfies taken with my two babies as I'm yet to get a photo of all three of us, we've just been so busy. I'll promise to have one taken by next months post! 


Nicola... Life Through My Eyes

3/25/2017

Project 365 - Week 12/52


19th March - 25th March

19th March 2017

20th March 2017

21st March 2017

22nd March 2017

23rd March 2017

24th March 2017

25th March 2017

This week has been a big shock to the system as Nick went back to work on Monday. It was the first week of parenting two children on my own and I was so nervous about it. Monday was okay and went rather smoothly but Tuesday I really felt it, it was so overwhelming! Neither child are particular hard work, despite one being a three year old and the other a newborn but it's just how full on it all is. You literally do not get a second and it's quite difficult to keep everything balanced. That being said by the end of the week I'd already begun to get into a little routine and I can see it getting a lot easier as it already is. They are both so worth it too! I absolutely adore my two babies. We did have some normality to the week though as Noah had nursery Tues, Weds and Thurs afternoon. He still says he doesn't want to go and sometimes cries at drop off but I'm sure that he really enjoys himself when he's there. I also started Slimming World again on Monday because I have to try and shift as much weight at I can by May as we are going on holiday! I've already lost two stone since giving birth to Ava but that was mainly her weight and lots of fluid build up. Still it sounds good to say I'm two stone down! Still got a couple more to go though as I really let myself go in pregnancy, I can't resist the naughty indulgences! The weather started picking up by the end of the week and we spent a bit of time outdoors and visiting family. Hopefully we will get lots more sun in the following weeks.

What have you been up to this week?






3/22/2017

Half Shell Heroes Mutant Loader Vehicle - Review



I've been turning down a lot of review offers lately as I've been rather preoccupied with the birth of our daughter but when I was offered the Half Shell Heroes Mutant Loader Vehicle I had to say yes as Noah is a huge fan of TMNT. Noah already has a couple of Half Shell Heroes and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles toys so I was excited to be able to expand his ever growing collection.



The Half Shell Heroes Mutant Loader Vehicle is the perfect toy for any HSH and TMNT fan out there. Our first impressions were great as it's more than just a bog standard vehicle toy, it's also a forklift vehicle which has a capture cage and even a little side cart for your Half Shell Hero to sit. Talking about those turtles the Half Shell Heroes Mutant Loader Vehicle also comes with an exclusive figure and it just happened to be Noah's favourite, Mikey!

Not only does the Half Shell Heroes Mutant Loader Vehicle look awesome but it's also a great size. It's not too big or heavy but feels very robust too. It's the perfect size for little hands and suitable from the age of two.



Now for the play test. What did Noah think? Well upon opening the toy he beamed from ear to ear and played with it for hours. He can lose interest in toys quite quickly so I know that the Half Shell Heroes Mutant Loader Vehicle has gone down a storm. He absolutely loves the forklift and cage element and is the master of catching all the bad guys already! It's also very easy for Noah to play with as there's nothing too small or fiddly. This is great as It's quite frustrating when a toy is difficult for a child to play with, for both the child and parent. A few days after opening and Noah is still playing with it a lot, it's a new favourite that's for sure! 

The
Half Shell Heroes Mutant Loader Vehicle with Mikey costs £19.99 and can be purchased at most leading retailers. Learn more about TMNT or the new range of toys over at Turtle Toys Collectors Club or at Flair PLC.

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

3/21/2017

Bob The Builder - Dig This DVD - Competition



CAN WE BUILD IT? YES WE CAN!

BOB THE BUILDER – DIG THIS
  
DVD RELEASE ON SALE MONDAY 17TH APRIL 2017

Bob is back! With tools at the ready, the nation’s favourite builder returns with a new DVD collection of tales of teamwork and friendship “Bob the Builder – Dig This”, released by Abbey Home Media on Monday 17th April.

Grab your tool belt and hardhat and join Bob and his team as they construct projects using a foundation of determination and working together. With his business partner Wendy, apprentice builder Leo, and a team of machines, Bob is ready to get to work in Fixham and Spring City.

This team digs into any project, hammering out solutions to problems, all while building confidence along the way. No project is too big or too small – from fixing a leaky roof to repairing a skyscraper. After all, the fun is in getting it done! In Dig This, Team Bob are digging the foundations for a skyscraper in Spring City’s new business zone, but work has to stop when they come across some ancient Roman ruins. 

This new collection features seven fun episodes: Dig This; Saffi’s Treehouse; Out of the Woods; Stormy Weather; Bear Mountain; Bentley’s Bones and Home on the Range.



1 of 3 Bob The Builder DVD's

Terms & Conditions.                                                                                                 
1. There will be 3 winners who will each win 1 DVD.
2. Prize sent directly by the PR. 
3. Competition ends 16/04/17
4. Incomplete entries with be disqualified. 
5. UK entries only.

3/20/2017

Siblings - March 2017



Siblings is a blog post linky that I've been admiring from afar for a few years now as there's nothing sweeter than sibling photographs. With this in mind I knew I wanted to take part in it long before Ava was even conceived. 

Ava was born on the 3rd of March and was 11 days overdue! She decided to keep us all waiting, especially her big brother Noah who often would exclaim, "hurry up baby sister, hurry up!" 

So here you have it, our very first sibling photo's and what special ones they are at that! The two photo's below were taken in hospital on the day that they first met and the photo at the top of this post was taken last week when Ava was 13 days old. As you can see Noah is already the doting big brother and is so gentle and caring with her. In the first few days we think he found the baby and the change of pace a little overwhelming. He would cry when she cried but he soon adjusted and we are so very proud of him. 

I'm so excited to watch their relationship blossom as they both grow up together and to experience more magical sibling moments like these.




The Me and Mine Project

3/18/2017

Project 365 - Week 11/52


12th March - 18th March


12th March 2017


13th March 2017


14th March 2017


15th March 2017


16th March 2017


17th March 2017


18th March 2017

Another week has been and gone, the second week since our baby girls arrival. It's absolutely flown which is always the case when you have a child but it seems to go even faster when you add another to the mix. Nick enjoyed his second week of paternity leave and he's been a great support as ever, getting up at the crack of dawn with Noah so I can have a few extra hours in bed after tacking all the night feeds. That's the only down side to breastfeeding, he can't help out in that area! Not until I express, which I'm in no rush to do at the moment. Noah has been adjusting very well to having a baby sister around the house and I bet he already can't imagine what it was like without her, I know that we can't. This week Ava was registered and is now her own little person. She was registered in the same building, in the same room and even in the same car seat as Noah so I had serious deja vu! Last night we even tackled a meal out with all the family for my nephews birthday. I was a little apprehensive about going as the baby is still so young and with her being breastfed but I went and I'm so glad we did, both children were good as gold. Noah also had nursery as usual this week and because Daddy was home he didn't really want to go, the monkey! We went out for tea and cake and for a nice walk as a family for the first time this week too, which was really lovely. I'm so excited to start doing things as a family as four as the weather gets nicer and as Ava gets older. I feel like we are all settling really well into our new family dynamic now and I'm loving every minute.

What have you been up to this week?


3/16/2017

Ava - 1 Week Old



My baby girl is now one week old. We've floated through our first week in a newborn bubble filled with insane love and epic tiredness. I wrote throughout pregnancy and through every age and milestone with Noah so I will be doing the same for Ava as those updates are priceless to look back at and mean a lot to me. 


Character
It's hard to sum up the character of a newborn baby, in fact I'd go as far as saying that it's probably impossible! That being said I do get an easy going kind of vibe from her as she seems pretty laid back and very rarely cries. I think the only time she does is when she's having her nappy changed and she goes full throttle! She hates having her nappy changed, hates it! She's also very alert and strong, maybe that's because she was overdue?


Size
Ava was 9lb 4oz at birth and was 53cm long and had a head circumference of 37. On her first weigh in just two days later she had lost 9% of her body weight. They said that it wasn't anything to be concerned about as it's quite common with breastfed babies. Her second weigh in was just two days after the first and she had put back on another 70 grams which they told me was really good for such a short amount of time. On her 3rd weigh in she was back at birth weight which makes me so happy!


Health
Unfortunately poor Ava has had to go the the doctors already as her belly button became infected. We took care of it just the same as we did Noah's but for some reason it never looked quite right. When we saw the doctor she cut the remainder of the cord off, cleaned it up, put on some dressing and gave us a course of antibiotics for her to take. It's not ideal for a one week old baby to have to take antibiotics but sometimes these things happen and although I beat myself up to begin with I'm feeling a little less guilty now. She's also had the sniffles which I think is probably some of the germs she has picked up from her big brother but she doesn't seem to phased by it. She also has quite flaky skin which I've been told happens a lot with overdue babies.



Feeding

As mentioned in a previous post I wanted to try to breastfeed again. I wasn't sure how we would get on with it but I thought I'd give it my all and if it worked, it worked and if it didn't, it didn't. I didn't put pressure on myself but I did do a lot of research and I think it really paid off. We have now been breastfeeding for over a week and I'm absolutely loving it. I had cracked nipples in the early days and Ava had an epic cluster feeding session last night but I'm really happy with how things are going. Now that my milk has come in and she is feeding often she is clearly putting on weight and doing lots of dirty nappies! It's so rewarding to feed and comfort her in the most natural of ways, even if it means she is clung to me 24 hours a day!


Sleep
She's not awake very often. She only wakes for short stretches of time and that's either for a feed, for a nappy change or just to have a look around for a bit. At night time she is sleeping in three hour blocks to wake for a feed. She then falls back to sleep in my arms and prefers to sleep there rather than in her crib. I can't complain, there's something extremely special about newborn cuddles.



Milestones

She was born, she lost weight, she put weight back on. She met all her family and her future best friend, her brother. She came home for the first time, went shopping, went to the doctors and on a walk with her family. The firsts of lots of firsts for our Ava.

Favourite things
Boob, sleeping in Mummy's arms, Mummy, her Nod Pod, being in the car or her pram, Mummy and Daddy's bed, having her head and nose stroked, lights, her unicorn rattle.




3/15/2017

Fireman Sam - Sam's Birthday DVD - Competition



HAPPY BIRTHDAY SAM!

FIREMAN SAM – SAM’S BIRTHDAY
  
DVD RELEASE ON SALE MONDAY 3RD APRIL 2017


Everybody’s favourite fireman is back with a new DVD collection of tales and rescue in “Fireman Sam – Sam’s Birthday”, released by Abbey Home Media on Monday 3rd April.

Join the ultimate hero next door and his crew for new, exciting adventures.  Fireman Sam lives in the accident-prone town of Pontypandy, where he helps with fighting fires, manning the lifeboat, helping the mountain rescue, or joining up with the emergency medical services. With his colourful cast of helpers, he is always there to lend a hand!

In this new DVD release it’s Fireman Sam’s birthday and Charlie has asked Joe to make Sam a remote control model of Jupiter as a surprise present. At the Fire Station, Station Officer Steele has told Sam, as it’s his birthday, he should relax for the day. However, will the birthday party go ahead as planned for everyone’s favourite hero next door? Episodes featured in this charming collection are: Sam’s Birthday; Pontypandy in the Park; Paddle On; The Great Party Panic andPizza Pandemonium.

How would you like to win a copy on DVD? To enter all you have to do is use the Gleam form below. Good luck and don't forget to enter my other blog competitions!

Fireman Sam DVD

Terms & Conditions.                                                                                                 
1. There will be 1 winner who will win 1 DVD.
2. Prize sent directly by the PR. 
3. Competition ends 12/04/17
4. Incomplete entries with be disqualified. 
5. UK entries only.

3/14/2017

February Degustabox - Review



Another month, another Degustabox and February's was fantastic! As mentioned in my past posts we always look forward to receiving our Degustabox every month and usually open it together as a family. Their subscription service is a great way to discover new and existing brands and there's always something for everyone. In all the months I've been working with Degustabox I've never been let down with a box and I think that's a real credit to them as you can tell a lot of thought goes into every box. We can't rate them enough.


Here's what was inside February's Degustabox:

1. Koko Dairy Free - £1.50
2. Heinz No Added Sugar Beans x2 - 65p each
3. Kabuto Noodles - £1.99
4. Bebeto Jelly Sweets x2 - £1.69 each
5. Blossom Hill Wine - £4.99
6. Peppersmith Chewing Gum - £1.50
7. Coldpress Smoothie - £2.79
8. New York Delhi's Americanos - £1.00
9. Diablo Chocolate - 95p
10. Willy Chase's Fitcorn - £2.19
11. Maui and Sons Banana Chips - £1.00
12. Willy Apple Cider Vinegar - Free gift



There was an abundance of great products in February's box, from wine through to baked beans. As per usual there was something for everyone. My son devoured both tins of beans in a week, my partner really enjoyed the Kabuto noodles and Coldpress smoothie and myself, I loved the banana chips and Candy Crush sweets! I'm already looking forward to seeing what is inside March's box!

Degustabox costs £12.99 per month but if you would like to try it for the first time use the code: CTOMW at the checkout to receive a huge £7.00 off! That means you can get your first box for just £5.99! 

What products or brands would 
you like to see in Degustabox next?


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

3/13/2017

Mum Moments With Hotel Chocolat - Hotel Chocolat Sleekster - Competition



Mother's Day is right around the corner, at the end of the month! This year marks my fourth Mother's Day and my first since becoming a mother of two just ten days ago. To mark the occasion I've teamed up with Hotel Chocolat to write a post all about my favourite Mum moments and to give away a Hotel Chocolat Sleekster to one lucky reader. If you'd like to win make sure to read the post and enter below.

There are so many special moments which spring to mind when I think about motherhood and my children. From all the first's and the milestones through to watching my son grow into the sweetest soul over the past three years. There was so many moments like those to choose from that I had to go with the monumental moments, the day my children were born. 


Seeing my babies and holding them for the first time was everything I ever imagined to be, totally overwhelming. With my son I was given drugs in labour so I was a little spaced out when he was born but I remember that instant love flick on inside me like a switch, though a little bit foggy! I gave birth to my daughter just ten days ago and although her labour was very difficult I was a little more with it when she made her appearance into the world. Everything was so clear and the familiar searing love flooded through my veins, there really is nothing like it. I wish I could bottle up that feeling and sell it, I would be a millionaire!

Besides the birth of our daughter I experienced another very special moment last week. My son meeting his sister for the very first time! All throughout my pregnancy I continuously thought of ways to make the big life event as easy on Noah as I could. I included him in everything and spoke about my bump and his baby sister often but not too much that it was all he heard. I also bought him one of his favourite toys as a present from his baby sister. 

When he came to visit us at the hospital it was the morning after she was born as we'd had to stay over night. I hadn't seen Noah in two days with my long labour and hospital stay so when I saw his Spider-Man wellies approach my cubicle I couldn't help but feel a little choked up. He must have felt the same because as soon as he saw me his bottom lip wobble and he climbed right into my arms. I gave him the biggest cuddle and told him how much I'd missed him and how much I loved him. Once he was comfortable I told him to look behind him as his little sister was there and really wanted to meet him. I had her all wrapped up in her cot and when he saw her he smiled. I didn't force him to go and see her and he happily sat on my lap whilst I introduced them to one another. He then shared some ever so sweet moments with her which I managed to get on camera.

Ever since he's been very gentle and often refers to her as "his baby" or "baby Ava." I can't wait to see their relationship grow as they both get older, sibling squabbles and all. 





Hotel Chocolat is my absolute favourite chocolate and their range of Mother's Day chocolates are out of this world. They kindly sent me one of their Mother's Day Sleekster tray to indulge in over the Mother's Day weekend and I have to admit that I've tucked into them already! The Mother's Day Sleekster costs £22.50 and contains 27 chocolates from truffles through to florentines. How would you like to win one? 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!

Hotel Chocolat Sleekster worth £22.50

Terms & Conditions.                                                                                                 
1. There will be 1 winner who will win 1 Hotel Chocolat Sleekster.
2. Prize sent directly by the PR. 
3. Competition ends 09/04/17
4. Incomplete entries with be disqualified. 
5. UK entries only.