4/18/2018

Noah's Going To School



When Noah was a newborn I'd sit and imagine what he'd look like when he's older, what personality traits he'd have and what his interests would be. I'd even look ahead and plan for our future. One thing that felt like a lifetime away was school but let me tell you, it wasn't a lifetime! I blinked and he grew into everything I'd imagined and more. The past four years have been a whirlwind and we've made some incredible memories together as a family.

There's a reason for this sentimental post, it was school admissions day on Monday and Noah was given a place at the school that we wanted
. It was such a relief and we are so happy. It's now beginning to dawn on me that he's starting school in September and it's so surreal. It's such a huge milestone.

The next chapter in Noah's childhood will be full of big changes with starting school. It will be just as scary as it is exciting but I'm trying not to think so far ahead. We have Summer and his remaining months at nursery left to enjoy. Starting school is so bittersweet but it comes hand in hand with growing up.
 I'm so proud of Noah and the little boy that he's become.


4/17/2018

Trunki Ride On Suitcase - Review & Competition



I've been a fan of Trunki ever since Noah was a toddler. I was lucky enough to win one for him, just in time for his very first holiday, a week away at Bluestone National Park. Over the years we've used it so many times, just around the house, for days out and of course on holiday too.

With already being such a big fan of the brand I was delighted when I was recently offered the chance to review one here on the blog. With Noah already having one I decided to choose a suitcase for Ava. When looking at the range I really impressed with how much choice there is. From cats and dinosaurs, taxi's and buses, through to beloved characters like The Gruffalo and Paddington Bear. I decided to go for one of their classics instead, a lovely pink, blue and purple case named Rosie.


Trunki cases are lightweight yet very durable, made from the same high quality plastic which makes regular suitcases for us grown ups. They have an 18 litre capacity which means there's plenty of space for clothes, toys, games, whatever you want to pack for your little one.

Inside there's a handy internal pocket, perfect for keeping things separate and safe. There's even a teddy bear seat belt, which is a lovely feature if your kids have a favourite teddy or comforter like Noah and Ava do. Keeping their possessions safe are two secure lockable catches which are located on the outside of the case.


The unique selling points of the Trunki is that it's of course ride-able. Featured on the design is a comfy saddle like seat, perfect for the kids to sit on when they are complaining that their feet hurt. The eye catching horns on the front of the Trunki aren't there for show but for children to hold on to for stability and to help them steer. There's also a tow strap which allows you to pull them a long on it whilst they sit comfortably and when they don't want to sit on it at all there's a handle which you can use to carry it. Trunki really have thought through their design and leaves little else to be desired.


We've used Noah's Trunki so many times, for UK holidays, days out and for storing toys but this year we will be taking both of them abroad with us for the first time. They are just the right size to take on board as carry on luggage, they fit over head on the plane or underneath the seat in front of you. I'm sure if we fill them with lots of toys, books and snacks that it'll keep them occupied whilst in the airport and on our flight.

Trunki prices start at £34.99 and the full range can be seen over on their website. How would you like to win a Trunki in your choice of design? To enter simply use the Gleam form below. Good luck and don't forget to enter my other blog competitions!

Trunki Ride On Suitcase

Terms & Conditions.         
1. There will be 1 winner who will the prize mentioned above.
2. Prize sent directly by the PR. 
3. Competition ends 20/05/18.
4. Incomplete entries with be disqualified.
5. UK entries only.

4/14/2018

Project 365 - Week 15/52



8th April 2018


9th April 2018


10th April 2018


11th April 2018


12th April 2018


13th April 2018


14th April 2018

Another week has flown by in the blink of an eye. Ava had her 1 year injections this week. My poor baby had four, two in each leg and she was so upset. Thankfully they didn't make her unwell and after the initial shock of them she's been fine.

We had a great week overall and I've decided to be brief to write a couple of highlights. The first being our weekly family day out to one of our favourite places, Bowland Wild Boar Park. Noah held chicks and both kids were in their element running around the open fields. Disney on Ice was another, both kids loved it. Ava was dancing and waving throughout and Noah was mesmerised by the Toy Story scenes. Tonight, Nick and I had a long overdue date night, a few hours without the kids. We went to Nando's, to the arcade and then to the cinema to see the film A Quiet Place. We really need to start making time for just the two of us, we loved it.

What have you been up to this week?

4/13/2018

Honest Organic Kids Juice Drinks - Competition



Keep your children refreshed as they play, with new organic HONEST® Kids. HONEST® Kids combines organic fruit juices, water and natural flavourings to provide simple and great tasting drinks that your kids will love. Giving Mums and Dads peace of mind, HONEST® Kids contain no added sugar, are low-calorie and sweetened only with fruit juice. Available in three delicious flavours, Appley Ever After, Berry Berry Good and Twisted Tropical Punch, the organic HONEST® Kids range was inspired by parents diluting juice at home with water and therefore contains just fruit juices, filtered water and natural flavours to keep children’s playtime refreshing and fun.


Containing blackberries and blackcurrants, Berry Berry Good tastes like fresh berries picked on a family afternoon walk. The exotic flavours of Twisted Tropical Punch brings mangoes and oranges to life in a burst of fruity freshness. While Appley Ever After, made with organic apple juice, will bring back children’s fond memories of apple picking on a crisp autumn day.


Mums and Dads will love the handy sports caps which will prevent spillages whether the kids are playing in the garden or out in the playground. Perfect to pop in the kids’ lunchboxes or for Mum to slip into her handbag, the conveniently-sized 200ml bottles make it easy for parents to let kids enjoy an organic, thirst-quenching drink wherever they are.

The idea for HONEST® Kids, America’s number one organic kids juice drink, came from Seth and Barry’s kids, the founders of America’s favourite herbal tea brand HONEST®. Inspired by their parents’ creation, the kids wanted their own fruit juice drinks that they could enjoy while their parents drank their HONEST® teas. Adapted slightly for the British palate, the three HONEST® Kids flavours are all certified organic by the Soil Association and have a deliciously refreshing taste.


Noah really enjoyed trying these new drinks and says the apple flavour is his favourite. We've actually packed a couple to take on our picnic this afternoon. The HONEST® Kids range* of organic fruit drinks are now available in selected Tesco, Morrisons, Asda, Waitrose and Sainsbury’s stores nationwide. The Manufacturers suggested selling price for a 6 x 200 ml pack of HONEST® Kids is £3.29. You can check
the website for more details.

Honest Organic Kids Drinks Hamper

Terms & Conditions.         
1. There will be 1 winner who will the prize mentioned above.
2. Prize sent directly by the PR. 
3. Competition ends 13/05/18.
4. Incomplete entries with be disqualified.
5. UK entries only.

4/11/2018

Ava - 12 & 13 Months Old



Ava is now 1 year old and I cannot believe it. Her birthday was 5 week ago but we've been so busy, and I guess I've been putting it off a little too. I'm in denial about her being one year old already, it's gone so fast. I thought everything went quick with Noah but it somehow manages to go even faster the second time around. I feel like I blinked and she went from this squidgy newborn to a fully fledged, walking toddler over night. It's so bittersweet.

March was such a busy month for us with our break to Center ParcsEaster Bank Holiday, lots of days out and of course Ava's 1st birthday. It's been so busy that I'm only just getting chance to write this update. With her turning 13 months last week I decided to combine the two into a double post.


Character
Her character and personality grows so much every month. Family and friends always comment on what a little character she is and how they could watch her all day long. She has so much personality and wit, that you forget she's only a year old. She loves to make people smile and laugh, it's her calling. Perhaps she'll be a comedian when she's older, who knows! As well as being very funny she's also inquisitive, clever, quick thinking, observant, strong willed and independent. She's also very social, loving and caring.


Size
I weighed Ava this morning on our home scales and she was approximately 1st 9, which means she's 23lb! She wears 12-18 month clothing which I think shows she's where she should be when it comes to how big she is. She wears a size 3 shoe and size 5 nappies.


Health
At the moment she's cutting 4 molars at once, they look really sore but she seems to be handling it well. In total she has 12 teeth if you count those, she has so many! Health wise she's been okay. She's had the sniffles here and there but nothing else. I think she still gets some immunity from breastfeeding as she does seem to avoid lots of bugs. 


Feeding
We are still breastfeeding but have recently introduced cows milk too. She enjoys both and takes a bottle no problem. I hope that this encourages her to self wean when she's ready. At the moment we still breastfeed at night and first thing in the morning. She has a bottle of full fat cows milk before her nap in the afternoon and one right before bed too. When it comes to solids she has three meals a day and numerous snacks. She also drinks water from a straw cup. Favourite foods are pasta, cheese, tomatoes, blueberries, raspberries, potato cakes, crisps, yogurts, fruit pouches, ham, cereal. She'll give anything a go, just like her brother.


Sleep

She's not sleeping through yet but she's a lot better than she has been. She usually goes straight to sleep after bottle or breast at around 8pm. She then wakes up during the night, usually once a night. I then breastfeed her back to sleep and she'll have a few more hours. She ends up in our bed every night, usually early morning but that's okay with me. I love the snuggles and this stage doesn't last very long. Her naps vary but she generally has one long nap before lunch. Ideally I'd prefer her to have a big nap after lunch but with Noah finishing nursery at 3pm during the week that isn't feasible really. She sometimes has a little cat nap after we've picked him up. 


Milestones & new tricks
* Ava is now confidently walking and has been for a few months. She now walks outside and can run too.
She's added one more word to her usual; mama, dada, daddy, hiya, aww, cat, ta. That word is YEAH. It's so funny when she says it because she nods at the same time.
* She smacks her lips when she's excited to have a certain drink or food.
* She nods for yes and shakes her head for no.
* She's always trying to dress herself, brush her hair or her teeth.
* Understanding. She seems to understand so much now. For example when I tell her we are going to pick Noah up from nursery she will grab her coat and go to her pram.
* She tickles her own toes and makes a "tickle tickle" noise.


Likes and dislikes

She loves cats! She's obsessed with them and everything that moves is one! Mummy, Daddy and Noah. Her family in general. Talking and waving at strangers. Walking outside and enjoying the freedom. Playing with Noah and his toys. Eating! Singing and dancing. YouTube and nursery rhymes. Foo Fighters and headbanging. Going out for walks. Trees and birds. Books, especially lift flap ones. Animals. Blocks and balls. Rock music and guitars, especially when Daddy plays. The Xbox controller! Going to the park and swinging on the swings next to Noah. She doesn't like being in the car, having her nappy changed or her teeth brushed.


4/10/2018

Diono Quantum Classic Premium Travel System - Review



I love a good pram, just as much as the next Mum. Being a mother of two and a blogger I've tried out and reviewed so many different prams and travel systems over the years. With dozens of brands on the market it can be quite overwhelming when it comes to deciding on which model to go for. There are so many different factors to take in, different things you are looking for and of course different budgets to adhere to. As you can imagine I was delighted when Diono offered to send out their new Quantum Classic Premium Travel System to review. I was very excited to give it a spin and to try out all it's wonderful features.

What’s included
Chassis, convertible seat, XL hood, XL Basket, rain cover, carriage liner, mattress for carry cot, apron, removable seat liner, leather bumper bar, infant car seat adaptors, Pump for wheels, drinks holder, security wrist strap.


The Quantum's features
Convertible 3-in-1 smart seatThe innovative design of the Quantum allows the carry cot to be transformed to a toddler seat by simply connecting 4 clips at the back of the seat. It's so quick and easy to do and it's great to have the option to have one seat which does both jobs. It's a nightmare trying to store both seat and carry cot so this is a huge plus for me. We skipped the carrycot setting due to Ava's age but with it only taking seconds to convert from carry cot to seat I took pictures of both modes just to show you how impressive it is. The toddler seat is fantastic, it can be parent or forward facing. It has a padded liner for comfort and a 5 point harness for safety.


XL eclipse hood
Another fantastic feature is the four tier, eclipse canopy. It's the perfect way to protect against the elements, whether it be sun, (it offers SPF50+ protection) winds or light rain. There's also a peek-a-boo window, ventilation panel, pull down sun visor and a rain cover included. This has got to be one of my favourite features, something that I always look for in a pram.


One-step brake & air filled wheels
The break on the Diono Quantum Classic is another new feature for me and is unlike anything else I've seen. The break is quite a big section of the lower bar, a simple step on, step off movement is all that’s needed. Pushing a brake on a pram has never been an easier. I'm also a fan of proper wheels on prams so I was delighted to see air filled ones on the Quantum, included is a pump so you can add more air if you feel like they've deflated at all.

Co-ordinated touch points
The pram features textured and colour co-ordinated buttons which make for easy identification and operation. This is perfect for when friends or grandparents borrow the stroller and are a little unsure how to use it.

Car seat ready
The Quantum is car seat friendly and the adaptors are actually included which I think is amazing as usually you need to buy these separately at an additional cost. The adaptors work with numerous car seats and there's even a safe place to store them in the XL basket.



XL basket
When it comes to pushchair shopping baskets, bigger really is better. The extra-large basket is accessible in any mode, with space for a cabin-sized luggage bag! You'd be surprised by the amount of stuff I like to carry under my pram so the XL basket is a god send for me. 

One-hand fold
Another great feature is the one hand fold. The unique geared operation works in two steps and features an automatic lock clip to make sure thing easy when transporting the stroller with a little one in tow.



Overall thoughts
I love the Diono Quantum and I can't think of any negatives or things which I would improve. It did however take me a little while to get used to the steering as it's quite a bulky pram but that's only because it's so much different to the one I was using previously. The handlebar was something else that I had to get used to as it's quite square in shape but the fact that it can extend is ideal for tall parents like Nick and I.

My overall favourite feature has got to be the seat unit itself. Not only can it transform from carry cot to seat unit which is amazing in itself, but it can also forward or parent face. We are parent facing at the moment and Ava always looks well supported, comfortable and happy. The recline settings and XL hood are ideal for when she's due a nap.

It's plain to see that this travel system was designed with both infant and parent in mind. So many of it's thoughtful and clever features will make my life so much easier and I wish I had it back when Ava was a newborn baby. 
Not only is this pram innovative, practical and fit for purpose but it's also chic and stylish looking too. The Diono Quantum Classic Premium Travel System retails at £675 and is available to buy now.


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

4/07/2018

Project 365 - Week 14/52



1st April 2018


2nd April 2018


3rd April 2018


4th April 2018


5th April 2018

6th April 2018


7th April 2018

The weather has been a little kinder to us this week and we didn't take it for granted, we made the most of it and have spent a lot of time outside. With it being the second week of Easter half term I was so glad that we weren't stuck inside. We've been on so many walks this week, a lot of them involving rock hunting! Rock hunting is a new craze which was started on social media, it's such a great idea! People find and paint rocks and then hide them in local parks for children to find. The photo of Noah with the Kinder Surprise is actually a painted rock believe it or not! If you'd like to know more about rock hunting I'd recommend searching for groups on Facebook or asking friends. We collected some rocks this week and will be painting and hiding our own soon. Maybe I'll do a little blog post about it! 

In other news we had baby group this week. Usually it's just Ava and I but with Noah being off for half term he came with us. He was really excited to go and really enjoyed himself. I think that just shows how fantastic Hartbeeps is. We then had lunch in the cafe, a stroll around the allotments and then my Mum came and met us there for the afternoon. The sun was shining and overall it was one amazing day. It's made me so excited for Summer and warmer days. 
The rest of the week was spent doing work on the house, having play dates, trips to the park, shopping, visiting family, the usual really.

What have you been up to this week?