Category Archives: Home and Lifestyle

Oscar’s Marvel Themed Bedroom

When we started building our house last year one thing I was really excited about was making both the boys bedrooms as amazing as possible. I had looked on Pinterest for ideas and brought more home and interiors magazines than I care to admit. I eventually decided on a Marvel themed bedroom for Oscar as he is really into it.

I found online that Dulux sold a Marvel themed bedroom kit with a wallpapered mural and the blue paint to match it. When I went to buy it online I had to really hunt for it as to my horror it had been discontinued so as soon as I found it I brought it and just kept it in our loft until we needed it. We did have to buy extra paint as the paint provided in the box wasn’t enough for a the size of Oscar’s room. The whole kit was £109.


I then saw a Philip’s wall light online of Spider-Man and it looks like he is coming through the wall. As soon as I saw it I knew Oscar would love it and we had to get it. The head and hand come as two separate lights and included is the crack effect sticker which our decorator put up for us. The lights themselves are just battery lights so when Oscar is older and doesn’t want them anymore they are simple to take off and paint over. The were £35 each and they look fantastic, especially at night! They are cheaper now on amazon at only £19.99 each. (Link below).


I then spent some time looking on websites like Etsy for Marvel accessories and found a lady who made wooden letters and paints them in various children’s characters. She made me ‘Oscar’ in different Marvel characters and it cost £50. I also found a wooden Marvel car and peg doll characters which was £40. The picture on the wall above is by Doug Hyde and was given to Oscar on his Christening Day five years ago.

I got Marvel Avenger bedding online as well and that was £25 for a double and a side table night light which again is made by Philip’s off Amazon which was £20.

We didn’t show Oscar his new room until it was all finished and he absolutely loves it! He was jumping up and down, it was very cute! Look out next week for some more boys bedroom inspiration when I will post what we did with Archie’s bedroom.

Oscar & Archie’s Photo Shoot With Stokke & AlexandAlexa.com

We brought our first ever Stokke Tripp Trapp when Oscar was small and then went on to use used it when Archie was born with the newborn seat. I then brought the Stokke Steps as Oscar got annoyed that he had to share his Tripp Trapp with Archie.  In addition to a wide of variety of colours and accessories, Stokke now offers complimentary engraving of the back of their Tripp Trapp chair with your child’s name, adding that extra special personal touch.


I first saw a personalised Tripp Trapp in the flesh last month when Oscar and Archie were both models for the collaboration between Stokke and Alexandalexa.com for Baby London which you can see HERE. Alexandalexa.com sell the most beautiful kids clothes with a huge range of designers on offer. Both Oscar and Archie were kitted out for head to toe in brands such as Tommy Hilfiger, Marc Jacobs, Adidas, Bang Bang Copenhagen, Stella McCartney, Tao & Friends, Veja and Zoobug Sunglasses. They both looked so cute!

We had such a fun day and the boys loved being part of the shoot, strutting their stuff and being spoilt by the lovely ladies at Azaria! We got to meet up with some other lovely bloggers/instagramers and their gorgeous children; Jessica from Lilypod & Sweetpea, Chelsea with Harlen and Harlow, Lisa from LeeLee Loves and Becky from Wishes & Wellies.


Stokke then kindly sent each of the boys a personalised Tripp Trapp in the hazy grey colour which matches our kitchen perfectly!  Archie uses his with the baby set and a star print cushion which is so easy to wipe and keep clean and Oscar uses it as a chair at the table, keeping my lovely new chairs clean! 🙂



I love that with the Tripp Trapp they grow with your child starting with the newborn seat, to the highchair using the baby set, to a chair for bigger children and even adults can sit on it too. The great design means it doesn’t look out of place and blends in with our other furniture.


The boys love their personalised Tripp Trapps and using them everyday! The Tripp Trapps are £169 and the engraving is free of charge!

 

 

B-Sensible Bedding Review

Recently because we have just moved into our new house we have got new mattresses for the boys beds. I have always used protective sheets under our bedding in case they have any accidents or Archie drops his bottle and milk leaks. On my shopping list was new protective sheets and then we were contacted by B-Sensible who sell fantastic protective sheets for your pillows and mattresses in various sizes and colours. The best thing about them is they are 2 in 1 so instead of having to change sheets and the protective sheet underneath now you only have the B-Sensible protective sheets.

What makes B-Sensible different from any other mattress protectors is that the sheets are super soft and contain a cosmetic grade zinc oxide which has been incorporated into the sheet fibres and stays there wash after wash which provides cosmetic, regenerative, skin protection and is also odour reducing and has huge antibacterial benefits. Also having just the one sheet on the bed I found made the boys cooler at night when they slept.

In our house we are clean freaks and our friends often laugh at our crazy ways and when I read up on the B-Sensible sheets they ticked all the boxes for me. Obviously everyone is different but I change our bedding every 4-5 days and hoover the mattresses when I change the bedding. Knowing that the B-Sensible sheets have a dust-mite barrier is amazing and as they are breathable this reduces any odours that may build up. Happy days!


Some protective sheets that you get can be hard and some even can be quite noisy to lay on and make a crinkly noise when you turn over. The B-Sensible sheets are so soft  just like any normal bed sheet and make no noise at all but protect your mattress at the same time.

Obviously one of the main reasons you would have a protective sheet on your bed, especially with young children is in case they wet the bed or spill anything. The B-Sensible sheets are completely waterproof making it easy to clear up any accidents or spillages and your mattress is kept like brand new underneath.


The sheets are machine washable and can go in the tumble dryer. They come in different sizes; cot and cot bed in the baby range and then single, small double, double, king and super king for your bigger beds. We have also just brought our new Super King mattress and Oscar a double so will be getting some B-Sensible sheets for them too.

The pillow cases are great too! The 2 in 1 pillowcases completely protect your pillows, and like the sheets are waterproof and breathable, super soft and have a 100% natural surface with unique benefits that enhance your comfort.


Both the protective sheets and the 2 in 1 pillowcases come in white, lilac, pink, brown, sky blue, purple, duck egg blue, red, beige, turquoise, fuchsia, black, grey anthracite, burgundy, arran, green pistachio and lavender so there is a colour to fit in with any room decor you may have.


We have the single sized in sky blue on Archie’s bed which are £35 and the pillow case protectors are £16.00.

b-sensible

Disclaimer: We were sent the sheets and pillowcases for the purpose of this review, however all opinions are honest and my own.

 

My C9 Forever Living 9 Day Cleanse

A friend of mine, Sophie is a Forever Living distributor and we were chatting and as I had made a new years resolution to myself to get fit and eat healthier I thought it would be a great idea to start off the year by completing My C9 Forever Living 9 Day Cleanse. I have done one before and loved the results. The aloe vera left me feeling amazing and I lost 8lbs in the nine days. This time around weight loss wasn’t a priority it was more giving my body a cleanse and starting the year as I mean to go on.

Image result for c9 forever living

The Clean 9 Pak contains everything you need for the Clean 9 program for the full 9 days. The instructions of what to do on each day is so easy to follow and before you start you record your weight in the booklet and using the tape measure provided and your body measurements too.

Day 1 and 2 are generally the hardest as you are starting off the cleanse and they are called the reset days and you don’t eat a meal on those days but to be honest I found these days really easy and the shakes, fibre drinks and the tablets and softgels contained more than enough calories to keep me going. I only found it a bit difficult when making the boys and Greg’s dinner, I had to contain myself from picking. There are a few free foods that you are allowed to eat if you need to have a little snack on the list in your booklet. You also need to drink lots of water, which I do anyway so that was easy to continue.


Day 3-9 as well as drinking the shakes, fibre drinks and tablets and soft gels I had a 500-600 calorie evening meal. In your C9 instruction booklet there are recipe ideas for healthy low calorie meals Most of my meals contained chicken as I upped my protein intake to help build muscle.


I chose the Vanilla flavour shake and it tastes really good. Since finishing the C9 I have brought extra bags of the forever lite ultra vanilla shake and have one for breakfast each morning and one after I exercise. I have also continued drinking one shot of 60ml aloe vera gel every morning too. Since drinking the gel I have noticed a difference in my skin and also I feel less tired in the morning after a broken nights sleep as always with Archie waking during the night.

“Summer bodies are made in Winter!”

Exercise

I exercised on Day 2 with a Metafit class and on Day 3 I did a Zumba class followed by a Pound Class. Day 4 I did a 28 minute Kayla Itsine’s Sweat workout from my app. Day 5 I went for a run and started doing a plank challenge of two one minute sessions a day and also started a squat challenge app. Day 6 and 7 I just did my planks and squats, Day 8 I did circuit training and Day 9 I did a Zumba class, followed by a Pound class, then a ab class.


My main goal throughout the C9 and going forward is to tone up and get back into shape, weight loss is not a priority to me as much as it was when I last did the C9 as It was about 8 months after I had given birth to Archie.

Since finishing my C9 I have continued my exercise regime, I try to do something everyday. I do four sessions a week with Carlie, who is just the best instructor/personal trainer. She is so motivational and encouraging! I then complete a couple of the 28 minute sweat workouts at home and do my planks and squats everyday. I am so determined to get back in shape!  Well they do say “Summer bodies are made in Winter!”

My Results

Day 1 I weighed myself and was 9 stone and jotted down my chest, bicep, waist, hips, thighs and calves measurements. On Day 9 I weighed 8st 9lbs so a total loss of 5lbs. Although it was the inch loss I was more interested in and in total I lost 11.5 inches in total off of the areas I mentioned above.

If you need any information on any of the Forever Living products and the C9 especially Sophie is on hand to chat through it with you and throughout the 9 days was really encouraging and on the end of the phone if I had any problems or queries. Sophie’s link is HERE.

Archie is 2 & Little Tikes Birthday Giveaway 🎂

Today Archie is 2! I can’t actually believe it, it only seems like a few months ago that he was born. Time flies!

Archie is a real character as so different to how Oscar was at his age. He is a little rascal. If you say ‘no’ to Archie if he does something naughty he laughs at you, takes absolutely no notice and then says “happy, happy, happy.”

He’s a climber and finds it hilarious to empty the entire contents of my kitchen cupboards and as soon as I put everything back, empty them all over again. He is non stop!

He calls Daddy “Nanny” even though he can say Daddy but thinks it’s funny!

He loves playing with Oscar and it’s nice to watch them sit and play properly together.

It is also nice to see that he is starting to make his own friends now at his toddler groups and recognises them straight away and plays with them as soon as he sees them.

Today we are going to my Nanny’s for a little birthday party with family and a few close friends. As Archie loves Teletubbies I have got a teletubbie cake, balloons and decorations.

To celebrate Archie’s 2nd Birthday Little Tikes have kindly given us a Lil Ocean Explorers 3in1 Adventure Course to give away to one of my readers! It is a great toy and can be used from 6 months until 3 years. So enter below and good luck! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Image result for little tikes 3 in 1 ocean adventure course

SmartMax Playground XL & Power Vehicles Mix Review

With Christmas less than a month away and with your little ones writing their Christmas wish list for Father Christmas I know as a parent thinking of present ideas for grandparents and other family members often leaves me confused. I don’t want Oscar and Archie inundated with toys, I like them to get books or fun and educational toys too. SmartMax is the perfect present as they are award-winning magnetic construction system which allows children of all ages the chance to be creative, to learn and to explore the fascinating world of magnetism and most importantly, to have fun. So when we were asked to review the SmartMax Playground XL & Power Vehicles Mix I was really excited to see what the boys thought.

We were kindly sent The Playground XL play set and The Power Vehicles Mix play set. Firstly we got out The Playground XL which is a 46 piece set and straight away I loved that both Oscar and Archie could play with it together easily. Obviously having such a big age gap between the boys means that not many toys are great for them to play together with but all the pieces of the set were big enough for Archie who is almost two to play with as all the parts are bigger than 3cm and thereby don’t fit a child’s throat. The pieces are also great for building fine motor skills.

Archie was fascinated with the magnets sticking together, it made him laugh so much. Oscar sat and copied the playground on the front of the box and put it together easily without any help at all. They then sat for ages rolling the magnetic ball through with Archie catching it at the bottom. When Archie went to bed, Oscar sat and built different models with the pieces, allowing him to use his imagination and get creative. You can also purchase other SmartMax sets to your collection to build all sorts of fun creations!

The Playground XL set is absolutely fantastic and would make a fantastic gift this Christmas for all ages to enjoy!

The second set we were sent was the Power Vehicles Max. This set was perfect for Oscar as he loves cars! In terms of building them it was better for him as it challenged him a bit more then free play building. The set has 26 pieces in the box and once again all the pieces are big enough for Archie to use as well and are specifically designed for handling by children as young as one as they learn about the effects of magnetic attraction and repulsion. The coloured guide book is so easy to follow and Oscar had great fun sitting with Grandad and building the vehicles last weekend. Archie then enjoyed playing with the vehicles and pushing them around. Oscar quite liked that he had built something for Archie to play with, he was really proud which was so sweet.

The magnets are strong enough to carry up to 60 times their weight, so the building possibilities are endless. This set also helps improve visual thinking as you have to follow the instructions. You can build a bulldozer, a fire truck, a forklift, a tow truck, a pick-up truck or a van with this set. They are then fun toys to play with too.

The boys absolutely love their SmartMax sets and your children will love them this Christmas! It is great to have a toy that they can learn and have great fun with too. It is also a toy that will last as Archie has years of play left with them. Archie also walks around with two pieces and a magnetic ball and pretends its a microphone. I asked Oscar what he thought of the sets and he said “they are so much fun and fantastic!”

Disclaimer: We were sent the SmartMax Playground XL & Power Vehicles Mix to review, however all opinions are honest and my own.

The Vileda Clean

Anyone who knows me knows I like to keep our house nice and clean and I love a gadget that can make it quicker and easier. Having two little boys its not easy to keep everything clean and tidy and nothing drives me more crazy than when the sun shines on the patio doors and you can see little hand prints all over them. Then I wipe the windows clean and the next morning when the sun comes out they are covered in streaks, it literally drives me potty. So when Vileda asked me if I would like to review their Windomatic it made my day! Before I tell your my full review obviously as a blogger I get sent various products to review but the Windomatic is one of those products that I love so much and use everyday and actually makes cleaning the windows a quicker and so much easier task for me.

When the Windomatic arrived I plugged it in and charged it up. One charge can wipe up to 60m² . As soon as it was ready to use the first thing I did was clean those dreaded patio doors. You simply spray your windows with water, then wipe them then use the Windomatic and the suction vacuums up any condensation and leaves a streak free window. You can also use it on glass, mirrors and surfaces to clean up any spillages. I also used it on my granite work surfaces after cleaning and they were sparkling and streak free! After cleaning all of the windows I was genuinely thrilled with my new Windomatic. You might think what a saddo, but seriously the Windomatic is blooming amazing. All my windows are sparkling and as it is so quick and easy to use that when I spot a little hand print on the window I can clean it up in seconds, which for someone like me it pleases me greatly!

Using the Windomatic is so easy as it is super lightweight and not to big to carry around the house. The head of it is really flexible making it easy to move around the window and clean right in the corners. I have quite a lot of windows in our house and even in the smaller openings at the top of some of them you can clean every bit of them as the head fits and moves perfectly.

As you can tell I absolutely love the Windomatic and give it 5* rating. I couldn’t recommend it anymore, it really is a fantastic product that will make cleaning the windows in your home quicker and easier.

Another product I will quickly mention is the Vileda 1-2 spray mop. I saw it in Waitrose a couple of weeks ago and brought it. It is fantastic! You simply fill it with the cleaning solution and then use the spray on the handle and then mop as you go. It is convenient and quick to use and every morning and evening I clean the kitchen floor with it and its great for after meal times with Archie and then at the end of the day I wash the microfibre mop pad in the washing machine. It leaves the floor smelling fresh and so clean!

You can purchase the Windomatic for only £49.99 with free delivery HERE.

Disclaimer: I was sent the Vileda Windomatic for the purpose of this review. However all opinions are honest and my own and I absolutely love it!

Our Summer Holiday Round Up 2016

With Oscar returning to school on Thursday 🙁 I thought it would be nice to put together a Summer 2016 round up post of all that we have been up to. We have had a very long Summer as Oscar had nine weeks off as he broke up on the 8th of July. I absolutely love him being at home and we have had so much fun.

Week 1

We started off the holidays going straight from school at 12 o’clock to a hotel near us with Oscar’s school friends and went in the walled garden where they swam all day had hot dogs for tea and had a fantastic time! As the weather was nice we spent the rest of the week in the garden and got ready to go on holiday. We also went into London to a Finding Nemo event with Epson which was great fun! Archie had his first hair cut at Sharkey’s and he was so good sitting in the Lightning Mcqueen car.


Week 2 and 3

We flew to sunny Mallorca on the Saturday. We had an amazing time and the flight being only 2 hours was perfect for Archie who was a right fidget. We met up with one of Oscar’s school friends who was also in Mallorca which was lovely and went to see some close friends of ours that moved out there a few years ago. Our hotel was on the east of the island, the Protur Biomar Gran Hotel and Spa and it was really lovely. We went on an excursion to see the Pirates show which if you have kids is a must. The show is absolutely amazing, I have never seen anything like it. It was fantastic!


Oscar made lots of friends around the pool and both the boys loved the kids disco in the evening. We also hired a quad bike for Oscar which was so funny as Greg had to run behind him to make sure he didn’t bang in to anyone and we took a horse and carriage ride where the boys waved to everybody we went past.

Week 4

When we got home Oscar’s friend from outside his school had finished for the Summer so we went swimming with them and for a picnic. We went for our weekly fish and chips on a Tuesday with Great-Nanny which was lovely for Oscar as he is usually at school. It was great to go and check on our house build to see the progress. It was amazing to see what they had done in just 2 weeks! We had some lovely weather so I put the pool up in the garden and we also went to the local park a few times. Oscar also went to the cinema with Daddy.

Week 5

Daddy went on a stag do for a few days so I booked a few days in Norfolk with my best friend and her two children which was so amazing! Norfolk is home from home for me as as a child we went there 3 or 4 times a year staying in Brancaster. This time we stayed a few miles from there at a hotel called Briarfields and the kids loved being on the beach, building sand castles, eating ice cream and running around. We had such a fantastic time and we will try and do it every year now! We missed Daddy loads though!


Week 6

We met up with Oscar’s school friends at the walled garden for the day and the weather was amazing! I looked after my friends son for a couple of days and we went to the opening event of Gravity Force in St Albans that the boys loved. We went to visit Great-Nanny, went to the local aquadrome and went to see Scooby Doo Live at the London Palladium which was great. Even Archie sat in his own seat the whole time as he was transfixed on the singing and dancing.

Week 7

Daddy took a day off and we went bowling and for lunch with my Mum and Dad. The weather was amazing so we spent quite a lot of the time in the pool in the garden with Oscar’s friends over to play. We went to the Crayola Bus Tour event and Oscar got to do lots of art and crafts. On the weekend we went to Oxford for my Auntie’s 60th birthday and I got to see all my cousins and we even retook a photo that was taken 27 years ago!


Week 8

One of Oscar’s best friends had been away the whole Summer so we got to catch up with him and go for lunches and to the park and they played in the river. Oscar was so pleased to see him.

Week 9

This week has been a really special week! On Saturday Oscar and Archie were page boys at Greg’s best friends wedding. Greg was best man and I was asked to do a reading in the church. I won’t bore you to much but Steve has become one of my closest friends, hes more like a brother to me than a friend and we were so happy for him and Cheryl and it was an extremely emotional but amazing day. I almost crumbled in the church when I had to do my reading, I had never been so nervous! So congratulations Steve and Cheryl and thank you for a truly amazing day!


On the Sunday Greg was a little worse for ware and I was totally exhausted. We went to bed at 2am and Archie woke up at 6.30! Oscar stayed awake until 1am and partied all night long so he was a bit of a grump on the Sunday. So we decided to get some fresh air and went to the hills in Northolt, had a picnic and walked to the top of the hills and looked at the view of London.


We also went bowling with friends, went to see Great-Nanny and now we are ready for Oscar’s first day back tomorrow! Year 2 he we come….

Oxfam’s Donation Drive

As we are currently in the process of building our new house I have really started to declutter and sort through everything so when we do move it is as stress free as possible without moving things we don’t need anymore. So when I was asked by Oxfam to take part in their Donation Drive campaign it was perfect timing! Oxfam’s Donation Drive launched on the 26th August and is running for a month. Their campaign is to encourage the great British public to donate what they no longer need or want to one of their 700 Oxfam shops, because they turn those donations into cash to fund their truly amazing work fighting extreme poverty and suffering across the world.

Oxfam

They are asking the public for donations of: clothes, music, books, homewares – tableware, linen, rugs, curtain etc (not electrical equipment) and accessories (jewellery, shoes, scarves, shoes, belts, bags, braces etc).

So I started downstairs and went through the house room by room. I was pretty ruthless and before I knew it had piles of black bags ready to go to our local Oxfam shop in Rickmansworth. This time of year is always when I have a big clear out as with Christmas only a few months away, I know the boys will be inundated with more toys and clothes! With the big move hopefully in February I am more conscious of the amount of stuff we have and take the rule if I haven’t used it in the last two months then its going!

I really find decluttering and organising really therapeutic and am so happy when I know all our unwanted things are going to help other people. It was also great to get Oscar involved through sorting his old toys and teaching him about charity and helping others. We ended up with so many bags that Greg had to help me take to the Oxfam shop as I couldn’t carry it all on my own!

When you drop off your unwanted things to the Oxfam shop by then gift aiding the donated items – this is called ‘Tag Your Bag’ your unwanted items will be worth 25 per cent more.What I really love is that when you ‘Tag your Bag’, Oxfam will let you know how much money your stuff has raised and you can get yourself some Nectar points too.

So get organising and donate your unwanted bits and pieces to your local Oxfam store over the next month and take part in the Donation Drive.

“I am a member of the Mumsnet Bloggers Panel, a group of parent bloggers who have volunteered to review products, services, events and brands for Mumsnet. I have not paid for the product or to attend an event. I have editorial control and retain full editorial integrity.”

 

Aloka SleepyLights Review

A few weeks ago we were asked to pick one of the fun designs in the Aloka Sleepylights multi-coloured LED light range from Potwells. I knew Oscar would love the Robot design and when Oscar came home from school to find his new light set up in his bedroom he absolutely loved it. There are 26 lovely designs to choose from and six of these designs are now stocked at John Lewis and Mothercare.

John Lewis stock these designs:

Mothercare stock these designs:

So what is so great about these new amazingly fun children’s lights…… Firstly Oscar loves having a remote control and lays in bed constantly changing the colours and leaves it on a different colour each night. You can also leave it to rotate through the 12 different colours and the light gives off a soft and calming glow which is perfect for bedtime. Having the control is great for younger children too who can use the control which is great for practising their fine motor skills and learning all the different colours as well. The lights also have a side-lamp feature which leaves your light on a bright white glow which is also great for when you are reading a bedtime story and need a bit more light.

The light also has a dimmer function which is great and you can choose from four varying levels of brightness, it also has a sleep button which will automatically lower the light to create the ideal calm and dreamy environment to fall to sleep in. I also set the timer to turn the night light off after an hour saving the need to enter the room to switch it off as the evenings are lighter at the moment although Oscar sleeps with the remote under his pillow and turns it back on if he wakes in the night.


Oscar’s favourite light setting is the bright blue but my favourite without a doubt is the beautiful rainbow light show! Archie likes watching the light show too I am going to order the Giraffe light for him as it is perfect to have in a nursery.


The Robot Aloka SleepyLight has an RRP of £39.99 and I think is great value. Not only does it look great in Oscar’s bedroom but buying a SleepyLight will last you for years when using it from newborn.

Disclaimer: We were sent the light for the purpose of this review, however all opinions are honest and my own.