Wednesday, 31 August 2016

When The iPad Gets Too Much

I left Ru watching the iPad whilst I cleaned up the kitchen after lunch.

I wasn't gone that long and I returned to this. 

Obviously I had to take a picture before lifting the iPad off his face! 


Tuesday, 30 August 2016

Unmissable Tips For Mums On Getting Creative With The Kids

It’s so important that we teach our children to be creative. It will ensure they grow up with a great imagination and have brilliant creative skills which they can use during art at school. It’s a perfect time to get creative during the summer holidays when the days are long and boring for kids. After all, you don’t want them just sitting in front of a TV show or movie.

Research has found it can impair creative development as kids don’t have to use their imagination. They see characters and images in front of them, so they don’t need to imagine anything themselves. Therefore, it’s time to get creative and have some fun! Here are some un-missable tips for mums on getting creative with the kids.

File:Painting kid.jpg
                    Image Source

Create some cards for family members and friends

You can ensure your kids get creative by making some cards for family members and friends. It doesn’t have to be for a special occasion; they may just want to give them a card when they come over. However, if it is a birthday coming up, it will save you some pennies by making a card yourself! To make some great cards for family members and friends, you need to get some card and paper as a base for your kids. You can then get some gel pens, paints, and glitter out so that they can decorate them to their hearts content. Buy some stickers so that they can make the cards unique. You might want to work with them so that they can practice their writing skills at the same time. Show them how to write the person’s name so that they are learning how to do it themselves. Once they have finished with the cards, you can get them to design the envelope as well, so it looks amazing. If you don’t want to have to buy all the items separately, you can buy some card making kits which will have everything they need.

Child, Kid, Play, Tranquil, Study, Color, Write, Learn

Have fun with paper mache

All kids love some fun with paper mache. It’s so easy to make and can be used to create sculptures, dolls, and puppets. You can also paint the surface once it’s dried so that the kids can add patterns and bright colors. It’s very easy to make paper mache, you just need one part flour with one part water to make the mix.
Then you need to find the item that you want to paper mache. It might be an old bowl or even a balloon. You can then dip pieces of newspaper in your paper mache mix and start applying it to the object. It’s very fun for the kids as they will love to get messy!

Once it’s covered, you should leave it to dry for a couple of hours before the kids can start colouring the item. Remember to ensure the area is all covered before you begin, as it will get everywhere!

Have a baking day

If you want to get creative with the kids, one great way of doing this would be by baking!
Decide on a few items you would love to make with the kids. You can find some brilliant kids cookbooks which they can look through to find something easy to make. Then once you have a recipe, you can start preparing the ingredients. Find easy jobs for the kids to do such as stirring the bowl and rolling the dough. You can work with them to pour the mixture into bowls before putting it into the oven to cook. They will love seeing the finished result and eating the delicious cakes or biscuits!
You may want to buy a ready-made cake and just let them have fun icing and decorating the cake. You can buy them sugar flowers and hundreds of thousands to make it look fantastic. It’s great to get them to be creative, and they will have skills for life!

Create a hand or footprint

Kids love getting creative and they can even be part of the picture by doing a hand or footprint.
Ideal for little ones, it’s an easy way for them to get creative.
Cover their hands or toes in paint and then let them stand on a piece of card or paper. It’s a lot of fun for them, and the result will be a fantastic picture of their hand or feet. They can then give it to their dad when he gets back from work. I talked about creating a hand print before in this blog.

Hand, Handprint, Finger Paints, Watercolor, Reprint
                    Image from Pixabay

Create puppet characters

It can be really fun for your kids to create some puppet characters.
They can then use these to put on a fun show for you and your other half. All they need to create these is a bit of card and old buttons to make the face. You can even buy some felt to create the puppet character some clothes. Then you can get some little sticks so that they can attach the character and put on a fun puppet show. You might need to get some Glue dots from Glue Guns Direct or a similar company, which will hold the facial features on the puppet.
That way, they won’t fall apart when your little one is putting on a show!

Have some fun with play-doh

Play-doh is one of kids favourite compounds which is used for art and craft at home.
It gets everywhere so it’s a parent’s nightmare, but it will keep your little one entertained for ages. And as this feature explains, you may have to contend with the mess, but the creative benefits will make it worthwhile! You can get many different sets which will enable your kid to create fun characters. There are even themed ones such as minions which the kids will love. If you don’t want to pay out for play-doh, you can make your own easily with just some flour, warm water, salt, vegetable oil, and food colouring!

Image result for PLAY-DOH

You can find many things to paint around the house so that you don’t have to spend a fortune on buying items. Old bowls, cups, and bags are fantastic for your kids to get creative.

Monday, 29 August 2016

#HartleysLunchBox Challenge

Out of all the boys, Ru is my worst eater. 

Some days he will go all day with out eating.
Other days he'll wake up and just eat bananas and that will be it.

So I'm always trying different ways to make him find food more exciting.
I hadn't actually thought maybe a lunch box would help.

Ru loved decorating his special Hartley's lunch box, so I was pretty positive he would find what I put inside yummy!

For this lunch idea I went with,
Peanut butter rolled up wraps,
Carrot batons and dip,
Sweet Cinnamon Puffcorn,
Crispy Veggie Waffles - Sweet Beet & Shallot,
Alphabet Biscuits and
Hartley's Sugar Free Jelly Pot.

Growing kids need plenty of starchy foods to fill them up and give them energy.
Nutritious meals packed with fibre, protein, carbohydrate and vitamins will also help your child's growing bones and give them a healthy dose of brain power for the afternoon ahead

You can find
Fibre in cereal, fruit, bread and vegetables
Protein in meats, poultry, fish, dairy products, eggs and beans.
Carbohydrates in potatoes, rice, cereal, bread, pasta and some vegetables & fruit.
Vitamins in dairy products (milk, eggs and butter) fresh fruit and vegetables.

When trying to get Ru to eat, I always try to present it in a fun and child friendly way.
Cupcake cases help with this, they also section off different foods which is always a bonus if your child doesn't like their food touching.
I also tend to use cookie cutters when it comes to cutting the boys sandwiches.
Squares and triangles can get a bit boring after a while, but presenting them with star/teddy/butterfly sandwiches always makes the boys smile.

Hartley's jelly pots are championing the back to school period with a brand new campaign.
Hartley's Your Lunchbox.
Jelly pots are the perfect size for children's lunchboxes, providing a wide range of flavours to keep the youngsters happy.

Hartley's are offering consumers the chance to collect 12 special addition green lids from across the no added sugar range, to claim a free Hartley's lunchbox and stickers.
(like the one Ru has been using.)

You can claim your lunchbox by heading to the Hartley's website

“This post is an entry for BritMums #HartleysYourLunchbox Linky Challenge, sponsored by Hartley’s Jelly


Sunday, 28 August 2016

Sundays are for....

Cups of coffee and crazy children!


Project Mc2 Premiere and Spy Party

I was invited along to the premiere of Project Mc2 at The Royal Institution.

Not only was it showing the brand new season of Project Mc2 but also a spy party, which was hosted by the guys from Sharky and George parties.

I went along with Noah, my nieces Isla and Esme and my mum.

Noah wasn't impressed with coming with us, as he thought it was going to be far too girlie for him.

Once we stepped through the doors, he soon changed his mind.

The guys were greeted by Mckeyla and were given a secret password to get in and once inside they were taken to one side of the room by the spies.
They had to unlock and solve some puzzles to find some clues.
They were then taken on a secret spy mission around the building.

Whilst the kids were running around, myself and mum joined the other adults and had a coffee.
Once we'd finished we still had time to have a look around the building and check out the science room and all the Project Mc2 toys before the kids all reappeared.

The kids all loved being a spy and the dramatic end to their spy adventure was awesome.

They all then went into the science room, where they got to try there hand at a few very cool experiments such as,
Making their own lava lamp,
Growing some crystals,
Making clay monsters and taking fun pictures with a secret spy mirror.

This was one of the best events I've been too as it was so thought out and so exciting.
All the kids had a great time and were beaming with joy.

After we had, had our lunch we headed downstairs to watch the brand new episode of Project Mc2.

The screening started with another experiment shown to us by Atomic Amy.

We found out if dry ice was an alkaline or an acid.

What do you think it is?
Leave your answers in the comments.

The screening was good, I think the Isla and Esme were slightly too young to really get it, but I enjoyed it and thought if it was on when I was younger I would have loved it.
Noah actually got into it and I'm sure he would have happily sat through another episode.

All the children left with a goodie bag which had one of the brand new dolls in.
Esme was over the moon, as she did spend most of the event trying to pinch one from the display tables!

Each of the dolls came with its very own experiment, which I thought was pretty cool!
Not something you get with other dolls!

Esme with her doll Adrienne Attoms

We all had an awesome time and I have two very happy nieces thanks to their brand new dolls.
They're little scientists in the making.

Project Mc2 is now steaming on Netflix.

**Some of the photos above are not my own, but I have be given permission to use them.**

Saturday, 27 August 2016

Another Kids Clothing Haul ~ Next

You probably all know by now that I love Next with a passion and buy most of our clothes from there.

Great styles and great value for money, the clothes wear and wash well.
Ru has some of the boys old Next gear and it looks as good as new.

So lets kick it off with the twins.
I thought I'd go for matching outfits this time, as why not there twins!

Basic green jogger shorts, matching digger tees, with white shell toe trainers.
Matching polo shirts,
Chino shorts and my favourite baseball tops.

Noah got some new shorts and a tee that wasn't Minecraft or WWE related.
A bit of a win for me, as he usually hates it when I buy him clothes, but he's actually worn this a few times now. That's wear them and not moan about it until I give in and let him pick out his old clothes.

Noah used to love new clothes, but he now has a strange obsession with old clothes, that he'll much rather wear an old t-shirt and jeans that are half way up his shins.
I think the only way I'm going to win the battle is very slowly and only buy things occasionally and then take away bits and bobs from his wardrobe and hope he doesn't notice.

Ru bear is growing constantly so the need for clothes for him is a given, he does get the odd hand me down from the boys but its also far to hard not to buy new things. Specially when they are as cool as these...

I can't wait for it to get cooler so I can get him into these jumpers.
Both the jeans stood out to me more than the normal plain ones, they suit Ru right down to the ground as there's nothing plain about him.

He was also going to go and have a test photo shoot for a modelling agency the other week, so I wanted some nice things for that as he needed 3 changes of clothes.

I chickened out at the last minute as I read it would take 3-4 hrs and I just thought Ru would have one of his meltdowns and it would be awful.

Maybe I just need to bite the bullet and take him, as he does love a camera.

I also think he'll make a gorgeous looking model.


Diggerland Kent

On Tuesday Jenny, Sam, Noah and myself went off to play with some diggers at Diggerland Kent.

The sun was shining and the boys were in a great mood.
No noisy twins and no crazy Ru.

It took us no time at all to get from Minster to Rochester, so we managed to get to Diggerland at 10.15 just after it opened.

There was a little queue, but having a few members of staff on hand, we didn't haven't to wait long.

Once through the doors we were greeted by Duggy and Dotty the parks mascots but neither of the boys wanted to stop and have their photos taken with them, they were too eager to see what they could go on.

Sam did eventually give Duggy a high five when we saw him again.

Noah on buried treasure

Noah took to the diggers really well, and managed to fish a few things out of the pits and knock over the skittles.
Sam got a little confused and I could see that he was getting frustrated after the first two rides, so I decided that I would go on the next few with him, just so that I could show him if he forgot.

That seemed to work wonders, as his smile returned and he was having fun again.

Sam giving it a go on Skittles
Once they had finished on the diggers at the front of the park, they then went on to find dig-a-round, they loved it so much that they went on it a couple of times.
There was never a queue for this ride, which I think made them love it even more.

The weather did start to get to us by 11am so we headed off to the onsite café.
We refreshed with some ice cold slush puppys and decided to get an early lunch, before it got too busy.

The boys enjoyed hot dogs and burgers whilst Jenny and I had a cheese and ham panini.
The staff in the café were friendly.
The café was clean and the food was great.
There was a nice selection, something to suit all tastes.

After our lunch we headed off to the Go-Karts and Mini Tractors.
Sam didn't want to drive the Go-Kart, so I hopped on the back and lent a hand.
After we had gone round twice he then went back on alone and aced it himself.

Noah wanted to drive the mini tractors, but found it too hard. To be fair it was pretty hard as it was so heavy. I managed to do it just about and I think I only nearly crashed it once.

We all really wanted to go on the 4x4 safari but it wasn't open :(
We went on it a couple of years ago and it was probably our favourite thing about the whole place, so we were a little disappointed.

Our disappointment soon disappeared as we headed off to go on the Groundshuttle, Noah put up a fuss and said he didn't want to go on it, but in the end rather enjoyed himself.

We then went and queued up for the JCB 3CX, this is where you get to drive a full sized JCB  Backhoe Loader.

The queue was pretty long for this one, and we had to send Noah and Sam off to stand in the shade as the sun was really hot and we didn't want either of them getting too hot.

Once inside the JCB Noah had a turn of driving first but soon decided he couldn't do it and wanted to get off, but with encouragement from the staff member he cracked on and got it round the corner.
He then switched places with Sam and Sam then went on to put his foot down.

Myself and Jenny were nearly wetting ourselves with laughter as its soooooo bumpy in the back.

To cool off a bit the boys went and played in the soft play whilst me and Jenny had a sit down with a cold drink.

We both really wanted to go on the Spindizzy before we went home, Sam said he would go on with us but Noah was adamant that he was going no where near it.
We decided in the end that he could stand and watch and we would brave it.

Sam the superstar thought it was the best thing ever and myself and Jenny came off feeling rather proud of ourselves.
It was a lot higher and faster than I thought, so I'm secretly pleased Noah didn't come on as I know he would have ended up either throwing up or sacred for life.

Over all we had a fantastic day, I do however think if they had more than one person on the main rides helping the queuing times in busier periods.

You can find Diggerland parks in;
and a park coming soon to Worchestershire.

Park opening times are;
10am till 5pm
but 10am till 4pm in February,
The parks are closed Nov, Dec and January.

Ticket prices
Adults and Children 90cm or over £19.95pp
Children under 90cm Free.

If you pre-book online you will get a 15% discount.

**I was given a family ticket for free, in return for an honest review. All thoughts are my own**


The blog has been pretty quiet this past week, as we had our nephew Sam come to stay and then the week ended with a trip to Norfolk.

I'll be writing about what we got up to last week in separate posts, this post is to tell you all about our day trip to Norfolk.

As you can see from the picture above or if you follow me on insta, you'll notice our house is now officially up for sale.
We have an open day next Saturday, so fingers crossed there's lots of interest and people actually turn up.

The reason the house is up for sale, is we are relocation up to Norfolk.
It's a big move but one we think will benefit everyone.

Where we are now has no real garden, its far to over looked. New flats have been built since we moved in and the island isn't really somewhere we are enjoying living.
Of course its great having the beach so close but the negatives out number the positives.

Also having no family close by has been something we both said we missed.

We used to live 20 minutes from my parents and only 5 minutes from Jon's when we were back in Surrey.

Jon's sister lives in Norfolk and his parents have just bought a house there.

There is nothing holding us here now that Jon is working from home.
We don't want to move back to Surrey and we fell in love with Norfolk when we went on holiday there last year.

So with the back story done, on to Thursday.
We left ours around 10am, with the twins, Ru and Sam.
Noah had caught sun stroke so Jenny who had been staying with us for the week said she would stay on and look after him.

Noah was more than happy to be left behind with Jenny and he knows he always has a great time with her and she spoils him a ridiculous amount.

We had seen a house we liked the look of and decided we needed to have a look at it in person.
Jenni (Jon's sister) viewed it on the Tuesday for us and said it was worth the trip and that we could stay at hers for the night.

The boys were all fantastic on the way to Norfolk, the twins and Ru slept the whole way whilst Sam, and I played "Eye Spy".

We only stopped once and that was just to waste some time as we were in Norfolk and had no where to be until 2.15

We stopped in a Tesco and bought some lunch to eat in the van.

After that we headed into the town where the house was and met up with Jon's parents who had also travelled up to view the house with us and then go on to spend a night in a local pub where they had just bought their new house.

The house ticked all the boxes for us,
4 decent bedrooms upstairs,
a spare bedroom downstairs which we would use as a snug/guest room 
a lounge,
a dining room which we would use as a play room
a sun room,
kitchen and dining room
Utility space,
an office,
a beautifully big garden with a Wendy house which Ru loved, with a lick of paint and new windows it would be a perfect play den for Ru.
and a garage / workshop out front
and a massive drive way that we could fit up to 5 cars on, so when the boys are all at an age when they have cars, it wont be an issue.

The house needs a bit of love but nothing too major.
The town is walkable, as are the schools, all of which were graded good by Ofsted.
There is a lovely park just behind the Junior school, which the boys all gave there approval off.

After the boys had finished playing in the park and the adults had finished discussing the house we parted ways, we headed of to Jenni's house and Ken and Helen went to their hotel for a night of peace and quiet.

Our night was nothing but crazy.

Ru doesn't sleep at the best of times but being somewhere new and with other people to swoon over him, I knew he wouldn't go to sleep without a fight but didn't even think the twins would do the same.
It was like I had poured liquid crazy into them, they were running riot right up to 11pm.
They finally fell asleep at 11.30 whilst Ru was still running around laughing his head off.

I think we both crashed out just after midnight with him waking up at 2 when Jon got up, so with the help of another warm bottle he settled back down on the sofa, with me moving him back to bed about 3.

It was lovely to see Jenni and Ben, it would have be a lot nicer if the boys had fallen asleep at a normal time and allowed us to have an evening, but now that we are heading that way ourselves I'm sure there will be plenty more evenings spent together.

We put an offer in on the house and it was accepted.
So now just to wait and see what the surveyor brings back.

Wednesday, 24 August 2016

Important Things Most Mums Forget When Expecting A New Baby

No matter how many kids you have, there are still some things that many mums forget about when having another child. These can be little things such as forgetting to pack some baby wipes in your hospital overnight bag. Or pretty big things that can have a big impact on your child’s development. So, to help all your new and not-so-new mums out, I’ve compiled this list of things that we all usually forget when we’re expecting a new baby!

A Traveller Seat

Everyone knows they need a pram and a car seat. But what not many mums know is that they can get a traveller seat which is two in one! This nifty seat can be fixed into your car for all your journeys. And it can then be taken out and snapped into place in your pram. So it makes travelling super easy. Especially if your little baby falls asleep in the journey! There are now many different brands that make these traveller seats, so you will definitely be able to find one that fits your budget.

Life Insurance

It’s not an easy thing to talk about, but you do need to plan for you and your partner’s deaths. Even at such a young age. You never know when it might happen, and the better prepared you are will make things less complicated for your children. As well as writing up a will, you should also consider buying life insurance policies. Get separate ones for you and your partner, as you can now get specialist policies for mums. You can see more about them at this Once you have taken out a policy, you can be happy in the knowledge that your children will have some financial stability after you go.

A Nursing Pillow

Are you planning on breastfeeding your new arrival? Then you could benefit from buying a nursing pillow. This plump, crescent shaped pillow will help to keep your baby in the optimal position for breastfeeding. But once you have bought your pillow, ask your health visitor for advice on how to use it correctly. If you use it incorrectly, you could actually be making it harder for your baby to latch onto your nipple.

Bottles And Formula

If you are only going to bottle feed, chances are you won’t forget your bottles and formula! But these are also important even if you want to just breastfeed your baby. Not all mums find breastfeeding easy, and many will have difficulty getting their baby to latch on in the beginning. So in the first few weeks, it is important to always have some formula milk handy just in case breastfeeding doesn’t go according to plan.

A Set Bedtime

If this is your second or third baby, it can be easy to lose how organised you were for your first baby. And one of the first things that slips is the new baby’s bedtime routine. It is super important that all young babies have a set bedtime routine. This will help them settle and sleep better. And if they are sleeping better, that means that you and your partner will be as well! Even if you have some older children who are demanding your attention, it is always worth enforcing a bedtime routine for your baby. If possible, try and tie it in with your elder children’s bedtime. Getting all the kids to bed early not only gives them enough sleep, but it also gives you and your partner some quality time together before bed!

Digital Thermometer

Small babies don’t have fully developed immune systems yet. So if they become ill when they are only a few weeks old, it is very important to detect the illness as soon as possible. And the best way to do this is to track their temperature with a digital thermometer. The best type to buy is a digital rectal thermometer. Devices used to test temperature of the ears and foreheads are not too accurate for babies. If you notice a change in your baby’s bodily temperature, take them to your family doctor immediately.

Swaddling Blankets

If your baby isn’t settling at night, it may be because they are disturbing themselves with their startle reflex. This is when they accidently hit themselves. There is one easy way to make sure this doesn’t happen when they are trying to get to sleep. You just need to wrap them in swaddling blankets. This is an age-old traditional that many mothers have been doing for centuries. Babies are tightly wrapped in the blankets to help them feel safe and secure. The sensation of being wrapped in the blanket is very similar to the sensation of being in the womb, which helps relax the baby.

A Baby Carrier

Baby carriers have become very popular over the past few years. They give you the chance to be much closer to your baby while you are out and about, so many parents prefer them to prams and pushchairs. However, it is absolutely necessary to try before you buy. Many shops will let you try the carrier on with your baby in it. Otherwise, you may get it home and find that your baby doesn’t fit in it! Don’t try and get away with carrying a baby in a carrier that isn’t 100% right. Your baby could end up getting hurt or injured.

A Breast Pump

If you are breastfeeding, you should invest in a top-quality breast pump. This will help you when you express your milk. You will want a reliable pump that will last you as long as your baby needs milk. You should also look for one that is durable and portable. Normally, this means paying quite a bit of money for an excellent pump. But it will certainly be worth it!

Now that you’ve read this blog post, you shouldn’t have to worry about forgetting some baby essentials. And you’ll find it much easier welcoming your new bundle of joy into the world!

**Collaborative Post**