Thursday 20 May 2021

A peak into Bea's summer wardrobe

Come on Sunshine where are you?!?!
Bea has some lovely bits and I'm desperate to get her in them.

I thought I'd share some of the latest pieces that have recently been bought for Miss Bea.

First of my favourite...
Little Bird by Jools Oliver is back!! On the day of the launch, I couldn't help but snatch these two little outfits up for Bea.
I loved Little Bird when Ru was little and always lusted after the girl bits, so I was over the moon to here of the relaunch with Next.

I cannot wait to see Bea and her chunky thighs in these two outfits.

On Friday's Jon has made a little tradition where he'll pop into Morrisons on his way home to buy something nice for tea and a treat for Bea.

He is on a winning streak.
Everything he has picked out I have loved.
Not bad for a bearded viking.

You can't beat a nice cardi, and these are some of the new ones we have for Bea.
I do keep seeing the knitted ones with names on the back all over Instagram and do keep telling myself I want one, but I'm thinking ill probably wait until I see one I really like and then get it for her when she's 1 - so that she can get a bit more wear out of it, and you can see the back as she'd be walking around then.

The first two are from Morrisons and the second is from Tesco's that I managed to grab in a half-price sale.

Bit's that she's already enjoying are these pair of dungarees rompers from Next.

Something for the future.
As I pretty much spend my time scrolling through Instagram whilst feeding Bea I always come across pretty handmade dresses, one really caught my eye from Betty & Flo so I sent it to Jon who also really liked it.
He decided to buy it buuuuuuuut unfortunately, he didn't pick the right style of dress, or even in the right size - so we ended up with this one, which is just as sweet and will look lovely on her eventually, Jon can't quite remember what the sizing was, but my guess is age 1+

Now if someone could stop the rain and bring out the sunshine I would be more than happy!


Wednesday 19 May 2021

Top Tips for Helping Your Child with Maths

Maths isn’t everyone’s idea of a good time let’s face it. Some children find it a really stressful part of the school and it’s vital that parents help them as much as possible. 

Maths can be fun and that’s the key to helping your child to cope with it even when it’s not their favourite subject. Here are some top tips for helping your child learn maths effectively without getting upset:


Make sure your child understands why maths matters


Don’t just tell a child that they should work hard at maths. Children are sensitive and need to know the real reasons behind things. A good approach is to show them real-life examples of maths at work.


At the supermarket, show them how to read prices and then help them add up on a calculator as you shop. This is more exciting than working from a book and the practical application will help the lessons sink in.


Why not bake with your child and demonstrate how to weigh and measure the ingredients for a favourite cake?

Stay with them as they learn


This is especially important for reluctant mathematicians! The company during work time helps children feel they are supported. And you’re there to turn to if they get stuck. Read through homework assignments and help your child to understand what is needed to succeed. 

This prep school in Kent provides extra support for children who struggle with maths and that includes extra homework if needed.

Be positive always


All children need to hear positivity. Understanding how things work is one thing but when they don’t understand, it’s really important that you let them know that they will ‘get it in the end. If you suspect your child needs more support than you can provide, get them a tutor and let your child know that this is a positive action to take.


Talk to your child’s teacher to find out the best ways to help them effectively and remember that maths can be very challenging, so your child needs to know you’re on their side. Keep an open dialogue with school and always try to keep things fun! 

*collaborated post

Monday 17 May 2021

Days Out // Banham Zoo

For Ru's 7th birthday we decided to treat him to a surprise visit to Banham Zoo.
He had asked to go to the zoo for his 6th birthday but due to lockdown, we weren't able to. This year his request was to go to the local park, so I like to think we trumped his idea!

We booked our tickets online and got an early slot time to arrive, so we could make the most of the day.
We packed a little picnic and set off straight after breakfast and present opening.
Ru was pretty excited but halfway there he decided he just wanted to go home.

it took just over an hour for us to get there and once we arrived all the boys were excited.

The boys spotted the play park and wanted to go in, so Jon bought a coffee and I decided it would be a good time to feed Bea.
The boys loved the big slides and we barely saw them for at least half an hour. 
Once the park started to fill up and Bea was finished off we went on a tiger hunt!

Unfortunately, the tiger was on holiday in sunny Suffolk due to the zoo updating his enclosure so we'll have to come back again to see him.

The boys loved seeing the giraffes up close and personal.

The seals were a firm favourite, we got to their pool right on feeding time and the boys all agreed it was one of the highlights of the day. They loved seeing the seals jump around trying to catch the fish.

The zoo was set up well with a one-way system and lots of hand sanitisers were everywhere you could possibly need them.
Everyone kept to the social distancing rule and took it in turns to look into the enclosures.
It has been one of the busiest places we have all been to as a family since all the lockdowns but because everyone was sticking to the rules and the way the zoo had put in place their restrictions it was an enjoyable experience. 

Ru had an awesome birthday and enjoyed spending some of his birthday money in the gift shop on the way out.

We'll definitely be going back to Banham Zoo, especially seeing as the new house is only about 20 minutes away.


Saturday 15 May 2021

How to raise a science lover

 For many people, science is a wonderful hobby, for others a career and the fact is that it’s a vital part of life that improves our world in many ways. 

Children are innately curious and you may find that because science is so broad, there will be a part of it to please every child.

Children, from a young age like to know all they can about the world around them. They show this in their constant questions about their environment. 


“Why is blue a colour?”

“Why does the rain come down?”

“Who made the sky?”


These are all genuine questions asked by children and which of course, you can answer via science. The best way to help your child with the answers to these questions is to know them yourself! So, the first thing you should do, if you are not a natural scientist, is to learn all you can yourself.


How to help my child learn more


Enjoying learning through play is a great way to approach this. Games and experiments can be combined so your child is learning about science whilst they’re playing.


For small children, water play is a great first step in science. The simple act of freezing water to turn it into ice is fascinating and children will particularly like the idea of freezing objects into blocks of ice and then watching them melt.


You can freeze plastic toys, flowers from the garden, sweets and all sorts of things which can then be admired as ice blocks! Similarly, gardening in your own garden or a container can help children to understand more about biology and botany at once.


Freedom to explore


Some home experiments are messy but that’s great for children because they mostly love to make a mess! Making slime is one example of messy science and it’s universally popular. There are lots of great tutorials online.


Allowing your child to ‘make potions’ is fun too. A selection of clear plastic containers and some ingredients such as plants, flowers, salt, the food colouring will make them feel like miniature scientists as they work out what happens when things are mixed together.


This independent school in New York believes all children are natural learners and only need to have that ability unlocked in order to achieve. 

Friday 14 May 2021

Mum life // Trying to increase my milk supply and save my mental health.

Lately, the constant worry of my milk supply has been growing heavily on my mind and driving me a little crazy if I'm honest.

I'm becoming obsessed that I'm not making enough, 
I'm constantly googling how many ounces should my baby be drinking and then comparing that to the amount I pump on the odd occasion after Bea has already feed.

Last Tuesday I had a clogged up duct which was excruciating and I was worried it would turn into mastitis so I pumped 3 times as well as having Bea feed from it to help clear it and I only managed to get 6 ounces out and when I saw on the back of a formula box that a baby of her age should be drinking 6 ounces a feed I really started to question myself.

I know when I look at Bea and see how happy and content she is and the fact she is producing enough wet and dirty nappies I know deep down she is getting the right amount yet I still find myself worrying.

I  broke down in tears the other day as she fed and fussed on me that I told myself I was just going to give up and buy some formula - all the boys had bottles and she could as well.
I really didn't think I could do it anymore.
My mental health really seems to have taken a big hit with all the worry.

I went to Tescos and bought a box of formula and one bottle. 
I got home and just stared at the box and decided I didn't really want to give up and I was just having a bad day, so I decided to put the box and bottle away out of sight and carry on.

I can do this,.. I know I can do this!!

Bea feeds really well and only on the odd occasion will fuss and pull on me but always comes away from the breast with a full mouth of milk dribble. 

I decided to help put my mind at ease I bought myself some HOTTEA MAMA milks up tea, as I had read some great reviews about it helping to increase milk supply.
 I also stocked up on some of my favourite nipple cream and breast oil to help soothe my currently sore nips thanks to Bea's fussing.

I know my worries are silly and that she is getting enough but it is a little too easy to compare yourself to others on social and google isn't really the place to go for reassurance.

Hopefully, I can combat my anxieties when it comes to Bea and feeding and start to relax a little and start to believe in my own abilities and my body being able to give Bea what she needs.

Any breastfeeding tips and tricks would be most welcome. 



Thursday 13 May 2021

The Benefits of Extra-Curricular Activities for Children

Extra-curricular activities are a wonderful way for children to learn and to grow in confidence. Not only teaching practical skills but also social skills, extra-curricular activities can really boost a child’s development.


When should my child begin extra-curricular activities?

 You can’t start soon enough. Even when your child is a baby, fun baby classes are their first experience of extra-curricular clubs. This can grow as they do and you can seek out activities that interest them such as sports or arts-related clubs.


Finding the right fit 

 It’s not always a simple matter to find the right fit for your child. Some children struggle to know what they’d like to do and might try a number of activities before they land on the right one. For this reason, most clubs offer free trials so you don’t need to sign up for a whole term.


Another good option for a child who doesn’t have any special interests is Scouts, Cubs, Brownies and Girl Guides. These clubs explore so many different activities in a fun and safe environment that even the most uncertain children will enjoy them. The strong feeling of camaraderie which can come with these groups is particularly good for children who might struggle socially.


Some ideas to start with

 Here are some ideas for clubs and activities which might not have occurred to you.

·      Rowing clubs

·      Cricket

·      Rugby

·      Horse riding

·      Ice skating

·      Gymnastics

·      Dance lessons

·      Chess club

·      Debating

·      Sailing


There are so many wonderful extra-curricular activities available today that there really is something for everyone. The best schools have extra-curricular activities included as part of their general curriculum and students can take part if they choose.


Schools like this private school in Beaconsfield really take extra-curricular activities to the next level with enough choice that students can enjoy a real variety of different activities and sports.

*collaborated post

Monday 10 May 2021

The Importance of Pastoral Care in Schools

Pastoral care is at its heart, the provision of social and emotional care for students. When a school gets it right, the students feel nurtured and safe. 

Wrong and the students don’t know who to turn to in a crisis.

How to know if a school has good pastoral care


How can you work out which schools have a great pastoral care system in place? 

There are a few indicators. 


The presence of happy students is probably the best indicator of all. When you schedule a visit, you may have some student guides and you can ask your guide if they are happy at school and what it is about the school that makes it special.


In schools with good pastoral care, the communication lines are always open. Not only for parents and teachers but also for students with their teachers. 

Children need to feel heard in order to feel safe but they also need to know who to approach if they are in trouble or feeling sad. 

Clear indicators such as information about class counsellors or representatives should always be on offer.


Speak to other parents


Speak to parents of current pupils if at all possible. They will be vocal if the pastoral care is good and you can learn much from those with experience. 

When children feel that they are in a safe place, they are much more likely to open up about any struggles they may be having – socially, emotionally or otherwise.


When parents keep in touch with the staff at school, they can also be part of good pastoral care. For example, informing the staff if your child is having any issues outside of school which they may not be aware of can help the staff to support your child with any problems which might arise as a result of the issues. 

This independent school in Surrey places a strong emphasis on pastoral care and its students thrive as a result.

*collaborated post

Saturday 8 May 2021

Mum life // Ups and Downs

Last weekend was the first time I have really struggled with having a new baby, I had been pretty smug up until then.
She was feeding like a pro, she was happy and rarely cried, she didn't like to be put down for naps or bedtime but I could deal with that.

Up until Friday last week when Bea decided she was going to become really fussy on the breast.

She would latch on and then bite down and pull her head around.
Which resulted in me crying and getting very sore and her screaming for most of the weekend.
I was in such a state, and I had no idea why she was doing it.

I questioned my supply and started to pump in the rare moment she was calm in her bouncer, or when Jon was holding her.
Pumping gave me a little boost as I could see I was providing enough.
But that didn't stop her fussing.

By Sunday I was stood in Tescos in front of the formula and bottles in tears thinking maybe I wasn't what Bea needed.

I decided I would give it a few more days and see how we got on, I made sure I had all my nipple creams handy and pulled on my big girl pants. I really want to breastfeed and quitting at our first hurdle wasn't going to be the way.

By Monday Bea was nearly back to feeding nicely and I was starting to feel less sore and less like a failure.
I have a 90-minute appointment with a doula on Wednesday just to have some help with feeding and settling Bea, so I'm looking forward to that, I have also joined lots of breastfeeding support groups on Facebook!
Thank god for the internet!

Along with the issues with breastfeeding I have found myself becoming a victim of baby-brain, I keep forgetting important things and it's starting to drive me crazy. 


In other news, we sold our house this week and have also put an offer on a new one.
Now Bea is here we decided we did really need to find a 5-bed house and with Jon's new work being a good hour away, we all thought it would be better to be closer to there so that we would see him more.

So on Tuesday Jon, Bea and I went off house hunting.
We went to view a beautiful farmhouse which was built in the 1700s!
Wooden beams everywhere and beautifully big fireplaces.
It's in a tiny village and not too far from Norwich.

Our offer was accepted and now we are just in the process of getting all the legal bits and pieces sorted and hopefully we'll be able to get in there before the stamp duty discount ends.

Fingers crossed.
I can't wait to share the new place on the blog.

Bea turned 3 months this week, and I still can't believe we have a little lady in the house.

As the week has gone on her feeding habits have gone back to being like those of a pro and the fussiness seems to have gone back to wherever it came from.

3 months of exclusively breastfeeding, that is such an achievement for me and I'm proud I didn't give up last weekend.