29.10.15

Autumn is becoming my favourite!!

Normally I am a winter girl. I love this cold season because to me it means scarfs, gloves, snuggles under blankets, hot chocolate, Christmas, lazy film days, (sometimes) snow and so much more! But...this year I have noticed how much I am loving Autumn!
Me and Bubs go out on a lot of walks as he hates being cooped up indoors all day and I think it's always good to get out and get some fresh air. It's been during these walks that I have really noticed why I am loving Autumn!

The beautiful colours.
The leaves this year have been stunning..well they have probably been as stunning every year but it has only been this year that I have started to notice them. Where we live has quite a lot of trees surround it and I have seen beautiful red, purple, yellow and orange leaves all over the place. I feel a little bit like I have been walking around with my eyes closed and then suddenly this autumn they have opened and it's so so pretty!

Trips out.
This kind of links in with the above about colours but in addition to that I have been loving the weather recently. It has meant that we have been able to go out for walks, trips to the park and to the
zoo all without having to be super wrapped up. I think that we have made some really lovely memories this autumn from just doing the simple things like a trip to the woods :)





Indoor activities.
On the flip side, Autumn has brought along a whole host of new indoor activity ideas which have been great. So far we have done
tent picnics, pumpkin carving, glitter and sticking and pizza making. As bubba is getting older I have really noticed how he is able to do more and more and be entertained by different things.



Snuggle days.
These type of days are my fav and are quite few and far between to be honest. Bubba is starting to sit for long to watch a film but he still get bored after a little whilst and jumps off your lap and into his next adventure.

What is your favourite season? Any tips for making the most out of what we have left of autumn? Let me know below :)

27.10.15

The Perfect Autumn Outfit from Monsoon Mini-me

I have always loved the ''boho'' look for myself. I can't pull it off but I always swoon over Monsoons window displays when I walk past and imagine myself in their beautiful textured dresses and patterned tops. Then I realise that I totally can't pull it off and snap back into reality. BUT...having a toddler means than I can dress him in whatever I want and he doesn't care or argue with my choices :)
Recently Bubba was sent the most gorgeous dungaree set from the Monsoon Mini-me range and I honestly fell in love with it! Their range is amazing but this set really caught my eye.


The thing that I loved most about this outfit was the colors. The blue, yellow, orange and red on the airplane motif shirt paired with the brown corduroy dungarees just screamed autumn at me. The little airplanes on the shirt are super cute and I love that the shirt is blue as it matches with Bubba's shoes...yes I am a matching type of person :)





The quality of this outfit is brilliant and it is so well made. You can really tell that it is good
quality and I think that you get what you pay for to be honest. It may be a little pricey for some (£28.00) but you can tell that it is very well made and durable. The shirt can also be worn with other outfits which means that even if you don't want your little one in dungarees then they can still get a lot of wear out of the shirt. 





The only downside for me with this outfit is that it is cut a little small and for a chunky monkey like my bubs the buttons along the crotch kept popping open. I don't think it's anything that could be helped, just that Bubba is a little too chunky for the dungarees. 


Overall, I would really recommend these and the whole range of kiddies clothes from Monsoon. You can check out the dunagrees and the full range here! 

Disclaimer - This outfit was sent to us free of charge for review purposes but all opinions are 100% true, honest and my own. 

26.10.15

10 things all Mum's do but never admit to..

1. You have had a sneaky lick of the spoon once you have given your kiddies Calpol because that stuff is just so damn yummy.

2. Baby wipes have been your weapon of choice when having to do some emergency, high speed dusting as you have your Mum or MIL coming over.

3. You have told your Hubby/Other half to watch the baby as you need the loo and you have spent at least 5 minutes longer than necessary in there just so that you can have a few more minutes to scroll through Facebook uninterrupted and in peace!

4. You've seen that little tiny bit of leaky poop on the hem at the bottom of your 8 month old vest and rather than fight with them and go through all the tears of taking off all their clothes and changing their vest, you reach for the trusty baby wipes for a quick fix... You then spend the next hour feeling terribly guilty that you've done this and then end up changing the baby anyway just to  get rid of that guilt feeling. Come on...don't deny it... We've all been there! :)

5. The baby is crying...you and hubby are asleep...its the fifth time your little insomnia has woken up in the last 3 hours...you just want to sleep so you purposely don't move from the bed and just wait for your hubby/other half to get up. You think you have given hubby 2 minutes to realise the baby is crying and to go and get him when in fact what you do it get up after just 15 seconds, storm out the room as loudly as possible in the hope of waking up your hubby and then when you do come back in after putting baby back to sleep and see him just as you left him you give him a quick ''accidentally in my sleep' elbow to the back just to make yourself feel better!

6. You have sat in the car for at least 20 minutes too afraid to pick up your sleeping child from their car seat just in case they wake up and then nap times for the day are screwed!

7. Breakfast for your beloved child consists of home made porridge topped with chopped organic blueberries and sliced banana where as your breakfast consists of anything you can lay your hands on...a cupcake, half a banana or even the left over chocolate buttons from the night before.

8. Sometimes when your little one is a tired, miserable, snotty, grumpy mess, you actually feel a tiny bit relieved when you drop them off and get to escape to work..only for about 5 minutes until you forget all the grumpiness and snot and instantly miss them again

9. You have used the excuse of ''oh..he's teething'' at least once to get out of some kind of social thing you don't want to do

10. Friend had a new baby? Seen a baby whilst your out? Even seen a baby on TV? You automatically compare them to your bundle of joy and of course they are never as gorgeous, funny, clever, developed, cute! You would never say it out loud of course :)

Can you relate to any of these? :) No telling porkie pies...we are all friends here :)

This post is linked with:

New Mummy Blog

23.10.15

Foodie Friday

Lets just gloss over the fact that I missed Foodie Friday last week (I know...worst blogger ever..)and jump straight into what we are eating this week shall we???? :)

Before I get into this week I just want to touch back on the last Foodie Friday post I did and on a specific dish.. The fish friday!! We had a Haddock au Gratin which was an Aldi recipie and if I am being honest with you, I wasn't looking forward to it. The recipe called for mustard to be put into a cheese sauce and I didn't think that would work but it was soooo scrummy! I've been really impressed with Aldi's recipe page recently so I would strongly suggest if you are looking for some recipe ideas then you check it out.

So...lets get into this week then: (it does start on a Wednesday as my work days were different this week so I had to do the food shop on a different day)

Wednesday: Sausage and Mash:
A firm favorite in our house and I'm not ashamed to say that we do serve it so you have a mash castle, sausage turrets and a baked bean mote around the castle :) We may be mid twenties but we are just big kids deep down!

Thursday: Chicken and Leek Risotto:
I love a risotto and its only been since Bubba was born that I started to cook it. People seem to think that they are really complex things but as long as you don't rush it then it should always come out fine.

Friday : OUT!
Yes you read that word right ladies and gentlemen...me and Hubby are out! We have a family wedding to attend but as we are both working we will need to rush when we get home to get out and get there on time so I think it may be a sneeky MaccyD's in the car!

Saturday: Lasagna
Normally on a Saturday I like to do a ''fakeaway'' dinner so me and hubby can watch Strictly and Doctor who whilst munching on some naughty kind of dinner but Hubby actually requested that this weekend we had lasagna so that is what we have. We aren't making all our own pasta and sauce and all that jazz as its wayyyy to much for our cooking skill!

Sunday: Roast Beef
Ooooooo..... I am so looking forward to this dinner. Hubby makes THE BEST roast potatoes in the world and when they are cooked in beef fat that are on a whole new level!!! When we have our roasts we have roast pots, veg (usually peas, broccoli and carrots), stuffing and home made Yorkshire puds (which are super yum and bubs LOVES them). Can you tell him excited about this dinner??

Monday: 3 Bean Chilli with Rice
So this is a meatless monday recipie that hubby has been banging on about for ages. I am actually making the whole thing so no jars or anything. I'm not sure how it will be and how I will get on but I will report back next week!

Tuesday: Corn Beef, Egg and Chips (well waffles)
Pure comfort food! It super unhealthy but super yummy and cheap as chips. We don't have this very often at all and we tend to see it as a treat so I am looking forward to this dinner!

I did this weeks food shop at ASDA as I need to get home delivery due to time and I was actually plesently suprise. I order all the food for the week plus lunch stuff, snacky bits for O, washing powder and a couple of cosmetic bits for me and the shop came to £51.65 which I thought was pretty good!

So thats this weeks foodie friday! Have you got any great recipies you want to share as I am always on the look out for something new to try :)
xxxx

22.10.15

Behind the Blog #3

Welcome back to behind the blog number 3! 

This week I have a blogger that I think is inspiring! He is very open about his life and thoughts whilst still staying dignified and modest and I love his way of writing. He was one of the first bloggers I came across when I dipped my toe into the the blogging water and I now see him as such a helpful, caring and funny guy who I am pleased to know...
Introducing Martyn from inside Martyns Thoughts

I asked Martyn a the usual questions in an attempt to help my readers get to know this brilliant blogger a little bit better:


What inspired you to start blogging?
I've been blogging for 5 years now and it all started as I was rather arrogant and ranty and the truth be told I wanted a place to rant. Over the years I relaxed and matured. Inside Martyns Thought's came from wanting to document my home schooling journey with the boys. As a trained teacher I knew it was a place where I could keep all of my records and work. From that I also started documenting my life with and for the boys. They are my ultimate inspiration. 

What has been the highlight of your blogging journey so far?
It is always great when a post takes off and go viral you get excited to see that others have taken an interest. However, the biggest highlight was writing my mental health posts. It was fantastic to be able to speak so openly and get a response from others that are supporting you. The rumour that men don't talk was quickly vanished.

Out of all of your posts, which post would you say means the most to you?
I am torn on this. I have 2 of my favourites. 1. My mental health post "How the mental health system failed me" has got to be there. It was raw, open and to the point. The response was incredible and really picked me up from my dark place. 2. My post talking about my Muscular Dystrophy. I hide myself so much from the world especially my disability. Not in a deceitful way but because pride myself in doing what anyone else can. So to expose the weak side of me was a big step. 

What would you say is your favorite thing about blogging?
This one is easy. It's the community. 4 out of the 5 years blogging I didn't realise that the community was as large, friendly and supportive as it is. Through it ive found friends who I would say are closer to me than some family members.  

Describe yourself in 5 words?
Intelligent. Stubborn. Passionate. Caring and friendly.

Shhhhh...tell us a secret about yourself :)
Oh but it wouldn't be a secret then would it? ;) 
I'll tell you something that not many people know. I've had a cuddly toy since birth and he still stays in the bed with me every night. In 33 years I've only slept with it him 4 times. 

If you were being sent to a desert island, what three things would you take with you?
My cuddly toy. A Boat ;) A copy of Watership down. I could read that continually. 

And finally, when your not blogging, what do you do in your spare time?
Spare time? What is this word? ;)
Between being a sahd, home schooling and holding down 3 jobs I get very little spare time. It happens that I mostly blog in that time. If, and a big if, I do get some extra time I like to read or draw. 

You can go say hello to Martyn and read all about him below:

15.10.15

Behind the Blog #2..

Welcome back to the 2nd edition of behind the blog and today we are meeting the lovely Chantal from Milk and Nappies.

Chantal was one of the mummy bloggers that I started talking to via the #mblogchat which used to run on twitter and we clicked straight away. She is so down to earth and lovely and her blog (which I read weekly!) is so beautifully designed, her pictures are always so pretty and I love that she writes about real stuff that I can really relate to. 

So, I took sometime to find out a bit more about the Mummy behind the blog and this is how we got on:

What inspired you to start blogging?
I started blogging because I have read blogs for years and years and always wanted to write my own. I never knew what to write about so when I found out I was pregnant I decided that I would start documenting my journey and it began from there. I didn’t start writing properly until my son Zach was 6 weeks old, but I’m so glad I started when I did as I’ve been able to document most of his life and so many things I might have forgotten otherwise.

What has been the highlight of your blogging journey so far?

I think the biggest highlight so far has been when I was able to use my blog in a recent job interview to demonstrate my knowledge of websites and social media. I felt so proud to talk about my little corner of the internet and all of the things that I have learnt through blogging. I was successful and was offered the job, and I am so happy that this hobby of mine has helped me in my professional life as well as my personal one.

Out of all of your posts, which post would you say means the most to you?

I would say Zach’s birth story means the most to me because it is so raw and holds so many memories and emotions. It marks the beginning of our story as a family of three, and although I didn’t have the best experience it was worth every second because now I get to spend every day with the most perfect little boy.

What would you say is your favorite thing about blogging?

My favourite thing about blogging has definitely got to be the friends I have made. Being a parent can be quite lonely at times, especially as I don’t have that many mum friends in real life. Through blogging I’ve connected with so many other parents, and have found a little group of mums who are all so supportive of each other. I love being able to chat with people who I have so much in common with, and who inspire me on a daily basis!

Describe yourself in 5 words?

Lucky, happy, messy, honest & passionate.

Shhhhh...tell us a secret about yourself :)

I am very very messy and I hate cleaning and tidying although over the last few months I’ve been trying so hard to get better at it!

If you were off to a desert island, what three things would you take with you?
A solar powered kindle filled with every book in existence, a gadget that would make sea water drinkable and a fishing rod ;)

And finally, when you’re not blogging, what do you do in your spare time?
I’ll probably be with my friends and family. Both Jono and I are very social and we like to make lots of plans and see as many people as we can!

And there we have it. A little insight into the lovely lady behind Milk and Nappies. 
Please head over and give her blog and read and even go say hi on Facebook and twitter..all the links are below :)

http://www.milkandnappies.co.uk/
https://twitter.com/milkandnappies
https://www.facebook.com/milkandnappies




14.10.15

10 things that show you have a 1 year old..

1. You have snacks in every single bag/coat you own- I find snacks everywhere. My car, my handbag, my coat, even found a box of raisins in my dressing gown pocket the other day... The worst part is that I'm not even sure how they got there.

2. Buckaroo has nothing on you- ever tried to carry a huge changing bag on one shoulder, your handbag other the other, a mus cloth over one shoulder for the constant snot that streams from your toddler, your car keys in one hand as you try to lock the front door and hold a wiggling child in a slippery coat with your other hand all whilst wearing a pencil skirt and heels as you head out to work? It's not fun...

3. Leaving the house with some kind of bodily fluid or food on you has become acceptable- remember the time when you would never have dreamed of being caught dead with biscuit on your jumper or snot on your jeans.. Nope.. Me neither!

4. Loud noises make you angry- doorbells, alarms, floor boards creaking and especially even your husbands snoring.. If it wakes the sleeping child then you better run... FAST!

5. Soft play becomes a treat for you too- good old soft play.. The land of occupied children and hot coffee you actually get to drink! Bliss!

6. You can't remember the last time you ever brought something for yourself- whilst your child runs around in the latest super cute leggings and tee combo from Baby Zara, you are still lounging around in maternity leggings from H&M with a breast feeding vest under your 3 year old pre pregnancy jumper.

7. You plan your life around sleep and food- wouldn't it be amazing if that was your sleep and your food??

8. Going to the loo with a little person who follows you there has become the norm - cos everyone needs a hype buddy when having a pee right?

9. Your bath and bathroom has become overrun by plastic boats, squeezey toys, stick on waterfall things and bottles and bottles of kids shampoo, bath bubbles and body wash - a relaxing bubble bath just isn't the same as before when your having to remove a duck from under your butt every 5 minutes! Where did all the bloody ducks come from anyway???

10. Your house is a mess, you look a mess and your sometimes your life may feel like a mess but you have a little snot filled, dribbly, demanding, funny, wonderful, inquisitive, clever little 1 year old who brightens you ever waking moment and for whom all the above is trivial rubbish as you would give up everything just to see them smile.

Being a Mum to a 1 year old is hard..but bloody amazing :)


11.10.15

Sometimes being a woman sucks...

To all the ladies out there...please tell me it's not just me how feels like this? It can't be!?!? And if it is then I think I might need to go and see a doctor!

If you have read my blog for a while then you will know that I have always been very fortunate to have never suffered with depression or PND or anything like that. I am generally a happy person who just gets on. Recently though (past 2, maybe 3 weeks) thing's have been very very different and I am not 100% sure why.

It's honestly a little bit like I have been on a rollercoster. One minute I am happy and not worrying and have no issues at all and then the next I find myself either feeling really pissed off at nothing or worried about stupid thing's or even making up issues in my mind so that I have a reason to feel pissed off/sad/angry/anxious or what ever emotion I am feeling at that time! And...the weirdest part is that I know I am doing it! I can feel my mood changing and I know I am either starting to become not a nice person or that it is starting to lift and I'm going back to normal. It's horrible! Not just for me but also for the people around.

I don't tend to let it effect bubs as he always puts me in a good mood and makes me happy but I think the person that bears the brunt of it all is hubby. He is usually the one on the receiving end of these''mood swings'' and I feel so awful about it but I can't seem to find a way to stop it!!
I get pissed off at him for the smallest of things which then builds up and up into bigger things. I snap at him for no reason, even when the rational voice in my head is telling me that he hasn't done anything wrong and that I need to chill out a bit. It's so hard! What doesn't help matters though is that Hubby is unbelievably stubborn, very messy and likes to always be right, so when I have a moan off at him he doesn't just do what any normal, sane man would do when his wife is having a mood swing and just nod his head and back away slowly, he winds me up. He makes sarcy little comments or sighs and shakes his head so you can only imagine what my reaction is like as a hormonal, raging monster!!  :)

It's not like we actually argue or fight as we don't, but I just feel that I spend all the time we have together either blissfully happy and just getting on with stuff or totally pissed off and under appreciated. There doesn't seem to be a happy medium and I think I have sussed out why.
I had the contraceptive injection done about 2 and a half months ago and it was the first time I had ever had it done. For the first couple of weeks I was mood swinging all over the place, then things calmed down and it was all good. Now, as I seem to be coming to the end of the cycle and need to have another injection by the end of next week if I want to continue using it, I can feel the mood swings are back and worse that ever!

The reason I think that it is this causing the moods is because its not only the massive mood swings that I have noticed but I have also had the worst oily skin recently, killer lower back ache and have been on a period for the last 2 weeks. It's been horrid!!  The effects on the way I feel and look have been bad enough but it is the impact that it's having on Hubby that is hurting me the most. I hate that he works so hard all week long and then he comes home to me being such a moody cow. He must hate it too. I have told him how I feel under appreciate as I'm doing all the cleaning, laundry, bathtimes etc whilst he goes out (he went out once last weekend for the day on a stag doo! That was it!!) but it then dawns on me afterwards that maybe he doesn't want to be here because I'm being such a witch! He works so hard for me and bubba and I am so so appreciative of him but at the moment I know for a fact that I am not showing him that.

I'm going back to see my GP in the week to discuss this injection as I don't know what to do for the best. I thinking of either giving it another go for 3 months and seeing what happens or looking at other options. I know one thing though, that I can't continue to be such a mardy cow to Hubby as he is so good to me and he doesn't deserve the way I am with him sometimes. Sorry hubby (if you reading this). I know I am being a mardy cow but I don't know how to stop it :(

What are your thoughts on this? Have you got any tips or tricks when it comes to contraception and/or avoiding these mood swings??

xx

9.10.15

Foodie Friday

HEAR YEE HEAR YEE... ANOTHER BRAND NEW FEATURE FOR MY MUMMY SPAM!!!

Que Fan Fare...... maybe a bit OTT?? ;)

Welcome to Foodie Friday! This is another brand new feature that I am going to be running on my blog every Friday where I go through our meal plan for the week and any other foodie related stuff :)

I bet when some of you read the word meal plan you recoiled in horror...am I right? The thought of planning your meals for the week, having no flexibility and having to do a weekly shop to get all the bits you need make you feel sick? Well, I used to be you. Until I had bubba I never used to meal plan. I was the type of person that would pop into Tescos on the way home and get dinner or raid the freezer if I couldn't be bothered. I dread to think how much we used to spend on food back then and I also dread to think about how much we used to waste! Now, things are very very different!

When I had Bubba, me and hubby decided that we needed to tighten our purse strings a little and our food bill was one of the areas where we knew we would be able to make a saving. I used to shop at Sainsburys or Tescos and buy all of the branded stuff like Ribena and Hovis where as now, I shop in Lidi or Aldi and try to avoid branded stuff as much as possible (making a few exceptions for special treats of course!). I do a meal plan every week before I do the food shop and ALWAYS take a list
with me so I avoid buying stuff I don't need or forgetting to buy stuff that I do. I can honestly say that this works so well for us and we spend (on average) around £50 per week on food, cleaning stuff, loo roll etc. I don't think that £50 per week is bad for a family of 3 and I really do believe that meal planning is the key to this!

With our meal plan, me and hubby are trying something new at the moment where we have a meatless Monday and a fish Friday. This is because we felt we were eating too much meat and not enough fish so it just helps us to change it up a little bit. I should also mention that because me and hubby work it means that we don't really get to sit and eat with Bubba during the week..he eats at 5pm and we tend to eat at 7.30pm. Due to this, I try to do meals on a Tuesday, Wednesday and the weekend that Bubba can either have reheated the next day (if its during the week) or with us if its the weekend.

So this weeks meal plan looks like this: (note: it runs from a Thursday as that is when I tend to do my food shop.)

Thursday: Spaghetti Bolognese
Your bog standard beef mince spag bol with shop brought sauce and maybe a cheeky garlic baguette..probably not the healthiest thing in the world but we love it and its so easy and quick to do.

picture from Aldi's website
Friday: Haddock Gratin
This is something which we have never tried before but looks scrummy! I found the recipe on the Aldi website and its basically haddock served with a cheesy/mustardy sauce with roasted veg such as peppers, onion and courgette. I'm going to do some smashed potatoes with it too as I don't think that the fish and veg would fill us up (as we are piggies!)

Saturday: Homemade Pizzas
Hubby makes the best pizza dough in the world and we love nothing more than playing around with different toppings. Hubby even made himself a calzone last time which he loved. I think that this week I am going to try a feta and spinach topping on my pizza and see what that's like :) Pizza is also Bubba's fav meal so Pizza night is always a good night in our house!

Sunday: Hubbys Homemade Leek and Chicken Pie
Not only is Hubby good at making pizza dough, he also makes amazing pies!! Chicken and leek is one of his specialties and a firm favorite in our household. This makes the perfect Sunday meal as it something that we all like and I love that we can all sit down together to eat.

Monday: Broccoli Pasta
This is a recipe that I found online when I was looking for inspiration for our meatless Monday and this is meant to be super quick to do whilst still being nice and filling. It has a hint of chilli and garlic which is a winning combination for us, with Feta cheese crumbled on top which, even at the thought, makes my mouth water!!

Tuesday: Slow cooked beef stew with dumplings
I love my slow cooker, especially now that winters coming, and I love that I can just chuck everything in and its all done when I get home for work. Hubby isn't a great fan of stews as he thinks that everything always tastes the same but if I do dumplings I tend to be able to tempt him round to eating it. On the other hand, me and bubs LOVE beef stew and I always hate the fact that we don't have it more often.

Wednesday: Italian Chicken and Saute Potatoes
This is one of those packet things with the paper in it..you wrap the spiced paper around the chicken and then cook in a frying pan. We've only used them once before so thought we would give it a go again seeing as I had one in the cupboard. I'm going to do this with peas and home made saute potatoes...YUM!

So that is our week all planned out!! For all the food needed for the dinners, plus lunch stuff and fruit for snacking our food bill this week came to £43.78 which I was pretty happy with!

Have you got any top tips when it comes to meal planning or any recipes you can suggest for us to try? Let me know in the comments :)

8.10.15

Behind the Blog...#1

Behind the blog is a brand new feature that I am going to be running where we will find out a little more about the person behind the blog. I have a number of different blogs lined up for us to look behind but this weeks Behind the Blog is all about a blog that I personally read at least once a week and about a blogger who has been a great help and inspiration to me.

So...without any further ado...I introduce you to Al from The Dad Network.


The Dad Network is (in their own words) ''A blog dedicated to the art of Fatherhood''. The tag line of ''cos Dads have babies too'' is a phrase which I am a huge advocate of as I think that sometime Dad's are left out in all the ''baby stuff''' and Al, that runs the Dad Network is ALL about getting the Dad's as involved as possible. Al is a massive supporter of Dad's being involved in everything and posts about a whole host of things from getting as much support as they can whilst experiencing things that normally only the mother is supported in (such as birth and miscarriage), to ''how to'' guides and product reviews.

I spoke with Al to find out a little more about the person behind the blog and this is what happened:

What inspired you to start blogging?
Sadly it was because we experienced a miscarriage over our wedding. I was devastated and I searched for somewhere online for support and advice. I couldn't find anything for Dads so I decided to start a blog for Dads that covered miscarriage, pregnancy and parenting. http://www.thedadnetwork.co.uk/2014/06/the-story-of-a-dads-miscarriage.html

What has been the highlight of your blogging career so far?
I don't see it as a career but the highlight is when I get personal emails from Dads saying how much The Dad Network has helped them. I run a private FB group of 1300 dads and I'm incredibly proud of what that group represents and the dads in it. www.thedadnetwork.co.uk/networks

Out of all of your posts, which post would you say means the most to you?
My miscarriage posts. I want to break the taboos surrounding miscarriage and change the way that dads are treated. http://www.thedadnetwork.co.uk/2015/08/men-and-miscarriage.html

What would you say is your favorite thing about blogging?
Creating a record of our family memories.

Describe yourself in 5 words?
Devoted dad, adoring husband, ambitious

Shhhhh...tell us a secret about yourself... :)
I'm slightly addicted to ketchup. I eat it on almost every meal!

If you were being sent to a desert island, what three things would you take with you?
My family, a pen knife and a Flint

And finally, when your not blogging, what do you do in your spare time?
Date my wife, spend time with my kids, train for triathlons, support the dads in The Dad Network and eat! A lot!


So that is Al, the man behind The Dad Network Blog. Any Daddies out there reading this then please go and check out the blog as it is honestly one of the best Dad blogs out there and will speak to you on such a relatable level. Mummies out there..tell your husbands, partners..whoever to check them out too as I am sure it will speak to all the Daddies out there :)

You can find the Dad Network here:

www.thedadnetwork.co.uk

www.facebook.com/thedadnetwork
www.twitter.com/thedadnetworkuk
www.instagram.com/thedadnetwork
www.pintrest.com/thedadnetwork

Thank you to Al for taking the time to answer my questions and keep an eye out for nexts weeks addition of Behind the Blog.

:)


7.10.15

Cussons Mum & Me Little Explorers

If you have been reading my blog for a while or know me personally then you will know that I love all things bath time. I used to love nothing more than a long soak in a bath filled with all sorts of lotions and smellies, but since having bubba I have found a new guilty pleasure...smellies and bath stuff for him!! I've been lucky enough to review quite a few different baby bath ranges and when we were asked to try the Little Explorers range from Cussons Mum & Me I jumped at the chance.

Cussons have been taking care of all kinds of skin and hair for over 100 years now so I think it would be safe to say that they are pretty good at what they do. Cussons Mum and Me was made to be simple, practical and easy to use and was created with the help of over 1200 REAL mums. In the words of Cussons the range is ''Designed by Mums, Developed by Experts''. This made me really excited about the Little Explorers products as I think there is nothing better than when a brand takes advice and listens to the people who are using their products.

I used the Cussons Mum and Me Bump range when I was pregnant and I loved it as it included a gorgeous lavender pillow spray which I swore by and some other lovely products for a mummy to be. As I enjoyed this range so much I had super high expectations for the Little Explorers products and they didn't disappoint!

We were sent the following:

  • Little Explorers Super Soft Squidgy Soap
  • Little Explorers Happy Splashy Hair & Body Wash
  • Little Explorers Mega Mild Bubbly Bath
  • Little Explorers Funky Fizz Bath Crackles

The first thing I loved about all of these products was the scent. They have an almost grape like scent which is lovely and not too overwhelming. In my opinion it give a really nice ''clean'' smell after being used, if you get what I mean. The second thing I really liked about these products is that they are all hypoallergenic and dermatologist approved. Bubs doesn't really suffer with sensitive skin now as he seems to have grown out of it but I am still very aware of what I put in his bath and what is in the products we use. 

Out of all of the products 2 of them really stood out to me as something which I hadn't really used before and seem to be unique to the brand. First is the Funky Fizz Bath Crackles. These are amazing! They are almost like bath salts that you would put into an adults bath but they are so much more fun!! You sprinkle these into the water and they crackle and pop like rice crispies whilst ''magically'' changing the colour of the water. They are so much fun and bubba loved trying to catch the crackles as they popped and he was giggling away :) The second was the Super Soft Squidgy Soap. This was such an unusual product as it come out almost like a mousse but it lathers up so well and a little goes a very long way which is a huge bonus in my books!

Overall, we loved these products and would definitely recommend them! They are super fun in their design and features whist still being wonderfully gentle to bubbas skin. This range is available at a number of different retailers. Click here to go to the Cussons site to find out where you can get your very own Little Explorers products.  You can also follow Cussons Mum and Me range on Twitter for all the latest product news https://twitter.com/MumandMe_UK

Have you used the Cusson's range before? Whats your favorite products? Let me know in the comments :)

Note: these products were sent to use free of charge to try. However, all views and opinions in this post are honest and my own. 

I became a single parent..

So yesterday I became a single parent for just under 48 hours. Hubby had to stay away for work and left bright and early Tuesday morning, with him due to return at about 7pm Wednesday night. This was the first time I had ever been left for that long on my own with bubs...and I was petrified! I don't even really know why I was worried but I think it was a mixture of Bubs teething and being a misog and me worrying that I would get myself worked up if I couldn't calm him down or get him back to sleep in the night. But there was nothing that could be done and I just had to get on with it.
It sounds a bit dramatic but this experiance has taught me 3 things-
1. All the single mummies (and daddy's) out there... Wow. I applaud you. You are amazing and strong and adaptable and I am in awe of you. I know people who have dealt with being a single parent since newborn days and are amazing parents yet I have to cope with 1 night on my own and I'm a nervous mess! You mummies and daddies are amazing and I don't know how you do what you do.
2. I missed my husband more than I thought and missed him for reasons different that I expected too. I know hubs is very hands on with bubs but I didn't realise just how much I relie on him to help. I also didn't expect to miss his bear like snores next to me but I really did. It was like something was right last night and a piece of our puzzle was missing. I even missed getting an elbow in the head (which is a normal occurrence in our bed!). I just really really missed him and can't wait for him to be back so I can give him a big squeeze!
3. My friends are awesome! Won't go into a huge speach on here as I have done post dedicated to gushing about my lovely friends but I know that last night if it had got really bad and I needed it then I would have had a selection of people here with help and wine :)
I don't know what I was worried about to be honest.. Bubs was fine and was a super good boy all night, I got to watch all my crappy tv and have the blanket to myself and before I know it hubs will be back and our family will be complete again.
I think my biggest piece of advice for anyone who is going to be doing this or worried about this is to just do something special for you. Doesn't have to be big but it could be watching something your other half hates or having a nice long bath or something scrummy for dinner. Then before you know it your loved one will be back again :)
What are your tips for coping with your first night on your own?
XxX

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