Friday 29 March 2019

Six Toys My Six Year Old Loves

Welcome back to our fortnightly series on Things my child loves! This fortnight we are back to James who is Six Years Old and This week its all about Toys!!

So here we have six toys my six year old loves!

First off we have CB or Cranberry Bear giving his full name! This is the bear that James literally cannot sleep without! like Freddie's Moo, he came all the way to Majorca with us! When James was alot younger he would take CB literally everywhere with him. He actually went with James to nursery everyday for the full year! He started off being cuddled and then he moved into James draw and by the end of the year he was just staying in his school bag! I really think having CB with him got him through nursery!

Second we have his Dragon. Mummy actually bought this a couple of years ago in a charity shop for £3 and James has had hours of entertainment out of it! Especially as it makes noises! It was such a bargain as normally theses are at least £25

Next we have the T-Rex. James got this for his birthday last year as he is absolutely crazy about Dinosaurs and especially the T-Rex!

Now we have the Lego! Every parents worst nightmare! I literally find this all over our house!! But James loves to build things and Lego is is number one choice for building!

Next we have the Mega blocks. James adores building and currently he is using the Mega Blocks! I can remember at one point having about six or seven sculptures on my back window ledge that James had built out of mega blocks

and finally we have the Crate Creature! James saw these advertised on the tv last summer and he was desperate for one, but at £40 we were not going to just go and buy it for him, we did try and get James to earn the money for it, but that failed, so when we saw they were on offer before Christmas for just over £30 we decided to get him one and boy was he thrilled! He plays with it all the time!

Tuesday 26 March 2019

AD: A Childhood Favourite Beef Stew #meatmatters

AD: A Childhood Favourite Beef Stew

This meal was one of my favourites as I was growing up! My Nannie (my mums mum), would cook big batches of this up and put into her freezer to give to me after school, especially in the middle of winter!

This was actually the first time I tried to recreate it for us as a family meal and yes there was two extra portions for our freezer!

With Freddie having food intolerance's, I tend to cook most things from scratch and I actually really enjoy cooking!

The best thing about this dish was it actually cost me under £10 for all the ingredients! The diced beef was £2.59 and the root vegetable pack which contained swede, carrots, parsnips and an onion was only £1! The stock pots I used were gluten free and were Tesco own brand. I chose to use gluten free stock as Freddie has a suspected Wheat intolerance and has been wheat free since the start of January!

When my Nannie used to make this she would brown the meat and then put everything into a pan with the stock and leave it for a few hours, however I chose to steam my vegetables for half an hour to save me some time, so it literally only took me about half an hour to actually put together into the pan after browning the onions and the meat. 

So once the meat and onions are browned add them to a sauce pan with 500ml stock and add in the steamed vegetables. I left mine on a low heat for 30 minutes to simmer. It was all ready for Andy coming home from work and all we needed to do was heat it through and serve with some bread and butter!

This post is an entry for the #MeatMatters Challenge, sponsored by Simply Beef and Lamb. Learn more about the benefits of cooking and eating beef and lamb along with recipe ideas and inspiration here: We haven’t been paid for this post; however we were provided with a £10 Tesco voucher in order to buy the necessary ingredients for this recipe.

Monday 25 March 2019

Living Arrows 2019 12/52

Welcome to Living Arrows post 2019! If you haven't heard of the linky before, This was set up by Donna at What the Redhead Said and the name comes from the poem by Kahlil Gibran "You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth" Each week I post one photo of James and one photo of Freddie and share what they have been up to that week!

So it wasn't too busy last week for James and Freddie. We had our normal school and playgroup sessions, but daddy did have three days off so he could do some of the school drop offs and pick ups for James!

Freddie has been doing quite well with the start of potty training. He has been asking more and more to use the toilet, so the next step is get playgroup to start asking him more often!

James had his normal Beavers group on Thursday, but instead of meeting at the scout hut, we went to a local nature reserve to complete some tasks for a badge! He also has some home work to complete for another badge he is doing at the meetings! James also went and had his hair cut on Saturday morning! Where has my little baby gone!

Living Arrows

Wednesday 20 March 2019

Mother's Day Gift Guide

Mothers day is fast approaching and what better way to start the countdown than a gift guide as to what you could get for your mum or what your partner could get for you!

Last year James dictated what mummy got and he told daddy something pretty and some chocolate so I got a lovely box of posh truffles and a Swarovski rose. 

This year I have no idea what James is going to suggest! Hopefully this post will give people a few ideas!!

First up we have the awesome "Motherhoodie" from Ada & Alfred. This sweatshirt is available in three colours of dusky pink, slate grey and nude. 

For me I would chose the slate grey as I'm not much of a pink wearer! 

It also has some brilliant features such as a Hidden earphone cord feed, a Kangaroo pouch pocket, Ribbed cuffs and hem and made from 80% cotton. This is priced at £35.00. You could always twin with your child and buy them the "Childhoodie"

Also from Ada & Alfred we have this brilliant "Lioness" sweatshirt. 

I think this will be a popular slogan this year with the women's world cup and the England ladies team aka the lionesses there! What better way to support our national ladies team than to wear a top with their name on!

This is priced at £30

A personalised phone case is always a good choice for a mum. Sadly since I am using Andy's old phone, nowhere actually makes cases for it! In fact even when it was a brand new phone you still could not get personalised phone cases for it!

Another good present for a mum is the Tesalate towel. I've been using mine for a few weeks now and I adore it. We also have a fantastic discount code for you: vickih15 to get you 15% off the towel.

These are so lightweight and dry so fast! Plus it folds up so small and has its own travel bag, so if you are taking it away with you it won't take up too much room in your bag!

Wireless headphones are another good gift for a mum! Andy actually bought me some as a wedding anniversary present as my big headphones that fold are a bit bulky for taking out and about with me, the ones he got me are perfect so I can also use them in bed if I want to watch Netflix or something on my tablet!

I hope these have given you a few ideas on what you can buy the mum in your life for Mothers Day!

Monday 18 March 2019

3 Quick Ways To Introduce Luxury Into Your Home

**Collaborative Post**

3 Quick Ways To Introduce Luxury Into Your Home

Pic Source

Who doesn’t want to live in a home which is as luxurious as possible? If this is something you have been focusing on, then you will probably be keen to try and make it come true as soon as you can, but for that to happen you need to be aware of what is actually going to be involved. The truth is that there are plenty of ways in which you might be able to introduce some extra luxury into your home, and you will want to make sure that you are focused on a few of them if you want to make this kind of difference. In this article, we will look in particular at a few of the quick and easy ways to make your home feel more luxurious. Follow these tips, and you will be living in a feeling of luxury in no time at all.

Create A Spa
Before you go thinking that this is too difficult or expensive, it’s worth thinking about what is actually involved in creating a spa. Actually, you don’t need to do all that much. You just need to start with the bathroom you already have, and consider replacing the bath with one which is more like a hot tub. With that, you will already have gone most of the way, and then it is just a matter of changing around a few key things in the bathroom in order to make it more luxurious. This can be as simple as buying for yourself some hotel quality bath robes from Richard Haworth and having those in the bathroom, or you might just want to change the lighting to something softer. However you do it, it should be relatively easy to make your bathroom more like a spa, and so much more luxurious.

Upgrade Your Bedding

Bedding is one thing that many people find they want to replace very often, as old bedding quickly becomes uncomfortable or starchy. To avoid that, you will absolutely want to make sure that you are thinking about treating yourself to some high quality bedding, as this is likely to last much longer and will therefore retain a feeling of comfort for longer too. That will make you feel more like you are staying in a luxury hotel than your own home, and you will find it really does make all the difference in the world to your feeling of luxury. Consider this if you want to only make a small change which could change your whole experience of the bedroom and the home as a whole.

Get Creative With Colours

It’s funny what a difference colours can make. If you are trying to create a more luxurious space in your home, you will be amazed at how much you can do so just by thinking about the colours and how they might be altered. Generally, you can create more luxury in the home by focusing on darker colours, often reds and greens - but it’s all down to your personal taste ultimately. As long as you are aware of the effect colours are having on the sense of luxury, you should be able to make it as luxurious as you would hope.

Living Arrows 2019 11/52

Welcome to Living Arrows post 2019! If you haven't heard of the linky before, This was set up by Donna at What the Redhead Said and the name comes from the poem by Kahlil Gibran "You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth" Each week I post one photo of James and one photo of Freddie and share what they have been up to that week!

It was a pretty busy week last week at school for James. On Wednesday afternoon parents were invited in to join in with the last session of forest school! James had a brilliant time making a parachute and playing with his friends! He had also paid £1 to take part in splat the teacher for Comic Relief and he had a brilliant time lobbing wet sponges at some of the staff including the deputy head! All while the parents were watching from the forest school area having a right laugh!!

Then on Thursday afternoon again parents were invited in to join the class in the school library to read some books together. This time we had Freddie with us and we had a lovely time. James has started to get into the Harry Potter books and we had a lovely time reading some of the first book together!

Freddie had a lovely week at playgroup with his little friends. The big news this week is Freddie has started to use the toilet! He is actually asking to go which is a big step! He has been wearing big boy pants when we are in the house and a pull up when we had had to go out, but nine times out of ten when we have got back into the house the pull up has only been damp and Freddie has asked to go to the toilet where he has done a wee! I'm really looking forward to the day I don't need to buy any more nappies!!

Living Arrows

Saturday 16 March 2019

Siblings Project 2019 - March

Welcome to  the 2019 Siblings Project! How is it March! It literally only feels like five minutes since I wrote the February Siblings post! 

This Month James has been loving
* Beavers - he had his first sleepover at the start of the month!
*Doing Forest School as part of his school day!
*Building Robots out of the Mega Bloks

Freddie has been loving
* Playgroup! He has really started to settle into his new 15 hours
* The Kindle Fire Tablet. He is obsessed with the hide and seek peppa game!
*Building towers out of the Mega Bloks

It is literally impossible to get a nice photograph of these two monkeys at the moment!

Friday 15 March 2019

Three Toys My Three Year Old Loves!

Welcome back to our fortnightly series on Things my child loves! This fortnight we are back to Freddie who is Three Years Old and This week its all about Toys!!

So with out further adieu - Three Toys My Three Year Old Loves!

First off we have his all time favourite - Moo! This is actually the cow Moo Moo from Doc Mcstuffins which the boys have actually never seen! Freddie did hook a duck at our local community fair last summer and he chose Moo as his prize! This is the teddy he takes everywhere! He will literally not go to bed without his Moo and if he can't find him he will shout "Moo where are you!" Moo even went all the way to Majorca with us and Freddie took him everywhere we went! So Moo went to the beach, the water park and the aquarium! When Freddie had his reins on, Moo was attached to them with a toy tie and when he was in the pram Moo was attached to the shoulder strap! He was even used as a pillow when Freddie fell asleep on the coach to the resort when we arrived and when he fell asleep on the plane on the return!

Next up we have his Ninky Nonk! Now Freddie is a huge fan of In The Night Garden especially the Ninky Nonk and Pinky Ponk! He got a small Pinky Ponk for his birthday, so when daddy saw the Ninky Nonk online we knew we had to get it for him for Christmas! Not a day has gone by since that he hasn't played with it! Each of the four carriages plus the front engine has a different activity. Freddie's so far seems to be the front engine as it has four buttons to press one playing the Iggle Piggle song, another playing the Upsy Daisy song, one playing the Makka Pakka song and the last one playing lullabies as it is also a night light! 

And finally we have Megablox. Freddie used to play with these all the time when he was younger and he went off them and we were actually thinking about selling them, but daddy came homw with a big box of them that he got at work and Freddie has got right back into them! He does have to fight with James to get near them as James likes to build robots and brick walls out of them using every single block but Freddie really enjoys building towers now just like James did at three years old!

Come back in a fortnight for six toys my six year old loves! 

Monday 11 March 2019

Living Arrows 2019 10/52

Welcome to Living Arrows post 2019! If you haven't heard of the linky before, This was set up by Donna at What the Redhead Said and the name comes from the poem by Kahlil Gibran "You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth" Each week I post one photo of James and one photo of Freddie and share what they have been up to that week!

The boys had World Book Day last week. James took advantage of his own glasses and dressed up as Harry Potter. He looked so adorable. James also had a school disco on Wednesday evening after school and he had his regular Beavers meeting where he had to take a picture in that he had drawn of the planet Mercury and also talk about a space mission for one of his badges  

Freddie on the other hand took a dislike to mummy dressing him up as Peter Rabbit for World Book Day at playgroup! Freddie is really enjoying his playgroup sessions. He has come on so much in his development since he started! I'm going to be sad when he leaves at the end of the summer term, but I know he will thrive in the school environment just like his big brother did!

Living Arrows

Thursday 7 March 2019

**Guest Post** You Know You're An Allergy Parent When…

Being an allergy parent is not an easy job. There are a lot of things you have to look out for, and there are sometimes lots of things you need to avoid. Raising a child with an allergy is also informative. There is a lot you get to learn about health and nutrition when raising an allergy child. I’m Lucy, I have two children with cow’s milk protein allergy, and I’m here to share my thoughts on allergies and parenting.

You know you’re an allergy parent when...
There’s an emergency snack stash in every pocket
In general, snacks are bargaining chips or welcome distractions. But, when you’re an allergy parent, emergency snacks are crucial.

You may be out for lunch and the cafe you stumbled upon doesn’t have an option for your little one. Or, you might get held up in traffic or queuing, and the only option to calm your hungry offspring in an emergency is with your snack stash. Because you can’t just grab anything off the shelves, you’re excellent at forward planning.
There’s always a full change of clothes
I’m sure you can picture the scene. You’re on your way somewhere, you lift your child from their car seat, and you rapidly realise that they must have eaten something a few hours to a day ago. The nappy’s off, the clothes are off, there are wipes flying out of the pack faster than you can say allergic reaction. But, stress not. You’re used to this, you clear it all up and move on.
You get the feels when you discover a new ‘safe’ food
No matter your child’s allergies, when you can find new foods that are compatible with their diet, it can open up a whole host of new meal options. Whether your allergy win was discovering Coop sausage rolls were dairy free, or Pizza Express do gluten free bases, that’s another meal option sorted.
You eat banned food when they’re not looking
Kids can sense foods they can’t have from a mile off. You know you’re an allergy parent when you can stealthily eat a whole host of banned foods whilst no one is looking, and no one ever finds out.
You’ve got better research skills than the FBI
When going somewhere new you feel it is important to check the kinds of food offered. This saves a lot of anxiety, panic and disappointment, and it’s a particular must when you have a fussy child.
You give Mrs Hinch a run for her money
When occupying eateries and public places, cleanliness standards can be a stretch. Other parents who don’t have to deal with allergies may label you as over-protective. But high chairs cleaned with bacterial wipes and food picked off the floors of soft plays are just two of your ‘favourite’ pastimes, and you excel at them.
Your head spins with reaction confusion
Depending on the severity of the allergy, sometimes it is hard to tell if it is really a reaction or a bug. Overthinking is a frequent threat in this situation, and you start thinking back to what your child ate for the last few meals. Sometimes you have to stop trying to micromanage the situation and just get on with dishing out the cuddles...and the piriton.
The pain of explaining the allergies hits you every time
You know you’re an allergy parent when you’re frequently having to explain why your child can’t eat this, or play with that. You sometimes have to explain to people the reason why, including symptoms experienced and severity of consequences. Sometimes all you want is for someone to get it, and when you find those people, you can relax and be yourselves. You cherish those people.

Being a parent to a child with allergies has its challenges. It can be super-stressful, it can be heartbreaking, and it can be messy! As an allergy parent you’re used to having stealthy research skills, you’re brilliantly organised and the overflowing protection and love for your child is second to none. You’re an allergy parent, and you’ve got this!

About Lucy:

Hello! I'm Lucy, I write over at Real Parent. I’m a mum of 3 keeping it real. Join me for hints, tips, rants and lols as I wing it through parenthood.
I’m a Blogger in the UK who helps parents to feel more normal by sharing the reality of parenting. You’ll find real, authentic talk about postnatal mental health, childhood allergies, pregnancy, breastfeeding and lots more. My posts will make you cry, laugh, and feel like you’re not alone.

Monday 4 March 2019

Living Arrows 2019 09/52

Welcome to Living Arrows post 2019! If you haven't heard of the linky before, This was set up by Donna at What the Redhead Said and the name comes from the poem by Kahlil Gibran "You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth" Each week I post one photo of James and one photo of Freddie and share what they have been up to that week!

Last week it was back to school after a busy half term holiday. Both the boys were happy to be back at school and playgroup. 

It was a pretty quiet week for Freddie with just having his playgroup sessions. 

But James had a busy week with school, Beavers, a school performance and then a Beavers sleepover on Friday night. Needless to say by the time he went to bed on Saturday night he was exhausted! 

I've posted an extra photo of James this week so you can see how exhausted he was on his way home from his sleepover  

Living Arrows

Friday 1 March 2019

Six Books my Six year old loves!

Welcome back to my next post in the three or six series! In my last post I wrote about three books my three year old loves, so it was only fair that I did a six books my six year old loves post!

As James is three years older than Freddie I asked him to choose the six books and tell me why he likes them!

The first book that James chose was The Dinosaur That Pooped The Past. 

James is a typical little boy who loves all things dinosaurs and well erm poop. 

The main characters are a boy called Danny and his Dinosaur who likes to eat things and then once his tummy gets too big he poops them all back out!

The second book James chose that he loves is The Dinosaur That Pooped A Princess.

Danny and Dinosaur this time travel through fairy tale land to rescue a princess. 

This is a really funny story and has been read a few times since James got it for Christmas! 

I can see these books being passed along to Freddie in the next couple of years as he is already getting a little bit dinosaur crazy!

The third book James chose was Kitchen Disco. 

This is a really funny story about the fruit and vegetables in the kitchen having a party at night once all the humans are in bed!

There is a really funny little rhyme in it about shaking your pips like apples and partying like pears which James thinks is absolutely hilarious.

He got this through the Book Start scheme which gives a book to children in nursery and reception classes. 

The fourth book that James chose was The Great Pet Sale. 

He's actually had this book since the summer he was in the school nursery. 

The school ran a course for parents of nursery aged children about getting them used to basic numercy by playing games and the games that we made in this class were based around the story of The Great Pet Sale. 

The main character, a little boy goes into a pet shop that was closing down and managed to buy all the animals that were left for £1. 

The fifth book that James chose was Zookeeper Zoe.

This book was distrinuted free of charge by Boots the Chemist a few years ago. It was designed for parents to be able to spot the signs of their children needing a sight test by things that were happening in the story.

The story is all about a little girl called Zoe who is crazy about animals and wants to be a zookeeper when she grows up. So she goes on a day trip to a zoo and ends up helping the zookeeper to run the zoo for the day!

The final book that James chose was The Twits!

James is a massive fan of the author Roald Dahl and The Twits is one of his favourite books!

James has quite the collection of Roald Dahl books now and it all started with mummy finding her old copy of one of his books in a box a couple of summers ago!

So these are the six books my six year old loves! Stay tuned for the next instalment in a fortnight where you will find out about the three toys my three year old loves!