Monthly Archives: February 2019

27th February 2019

Currently Loving… February 2019

It’s been a while since I’ve put together a ‘Currently Loving’ blog post, but all this beautiful sunny weather has got me in the mood for browsing online for spring wardrobes for the kids (and a few little treats for me!)

So here is February’s selection, just scraping in at the end of the month! I hope you enjoy it – and fingers crossed the sunshine stays for a little while longer!

1. Minomug. I’ve made a pact to use reusable coffee cups in 2019 – and Minomug is the perfect brand to help, with their pastel-pretty cups sold in packs of three (one for my bag, one for the cupboard at home, and one for the car). They are drip-proof, leak-proof, shatterproof, dishwasher-friendly, microwave-friendly durable, lightweight, insulating, odour free (unlike stainless steel thermos cups, which can affect the taste), and made from BPA free, biodegradable plastic. They cost £34.99 for all three, making each cup less than £12. Shop here.

2. Jellycat. I love the long legged soft animals by Jellycat, especially this gorgeous green frog (£11). I can imagine him sat on a nursery shelf to add a touch of fun and a pop of colour. He’s available in a few different sizes and you can shop here

3. Monica Vinader. I was lucky enough to be gifted a long, rose gold chain from Monica Vinader for Christmas – and what I love about it is that you can buy pendants individually to change the way you wear it every day. These initial pendants are top of my wish list (£85 each) – and of course, I would like S, W and M to wear stacked together. Shop here.

4. Boden. I’m in love with the whole spring collection for kids from Boden – and these duck wellies (£24) are just adorable for little girls and boys. I can imagine Mabel wearing them with jeans and knitwear, as she splashes in puddles on family walks. Shop here.

5. La Redoute. These unisex denim dungarees (£18) come in sizes up to 3 years old. I’d dress Mabel in them with long-sleeved nautical tops for spring and lightweight pastel-coloured blouses when the weather heats up. They look comfortable and stylish, which is a winner for me. Shop here.

6. Antebies. If you like your children to sleep in the softest organic cotton, preferably in soft colours and stylish designs, Antebies is for you. It’s a sustainable brand that deserves lots of lovely attention – and there are already so many gorgeous designs on my wish-list (from £5.90). Shop here.

7.Sweet Love Press at Etsy. I spotted this bespoke rainbow print while browsing at Etsy a few days ago (from £18.50) – and immediately wanted to treat Mabel to one for her bedroom. This company offer so many lovely designs at low prices, so it’s well worth heading over for a browse. Shop here.

8. L’Occitane. The new Shea Baby range at L’Occitane (from £18) is perfect for caring for the skin of the tiniest little people, with lots of nourishing ingredients and gentle textures. We’ve been trying the ‘Cuddles and Bubbles Foaming Cream’ and ‘Lovely and Gentle Moisturising Milk’ at home – and both get a big tick from both me and Mabel. Shop here.

9. Sweet Pea Pantry. The lovely company Sweet Pea Pantry were kind enough to donate boxes to the goody bags at my book launch for ‘From Mum With Love’ a few weeks ago. They make a range of healthy baking kits (£2.75 each), which you only need to add a few ingredients to (such as eggs, oil, and water) – and having already tried the Carrot Muffins, I can personally vouch for the tastiness when they come out of the oven! Each box has a vegan option too. Shop here

10. UK Lingerie. There aren’t many options for browsing and buying lingerie online, so was pleased to hear about UK Lingerie. There are literally hundreds of styles available on the website, so if you have a specific type you like (I personally prefer wireless bras, which usually makes the options a bit limited when shopping online) there will be so many different colours, styles, and price points. My order arrived this year and I’m really impressed at the quality. Shop here.

11. Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine. I listened to this book as an audiobook last month – and whilst I only usually listen when I’m in the car, I just couldn’t stop with this book and listened late into the night. I just loved it. Talking as an author, it was just so beautifully written and imagined – but as a reader, it was the best story I have in a very long time. If you haven’t treated yourself yet, make sure you buy it (£3.99). Shop here.

12. Babiators. Babiators make sunglasses for babies, toddlers, and children (from 0-2 years, to 6+ years) – and their summer styles this year are fantastic. I’m torn between ‘Think Pink’ and ‘Totally Turquoise’ (£22.50). I can’t wait to see my children wearing them this summer. Shop here.

13. Converse. I’ve always dressed my kids in Converse shoes in the spring and summer months – and I’m especially partial to a velcro pair, as it means they can pull them on quickly and easily. This season, the dinosaur collection has won my heart – and these All Stars are my top pick (£29.99). Shop here.

14. Two Farmers. This company also donated to the goody bags at my book launch – and having tasted the hand-cooked crisps, I had to tell you about them. Founders Sean and Mark met one night for a pint of local beer and a packet of crisps – and that night, they hatched out a plan of how to honour and celebrate the Hertfordshire countryside and the potatoes they grew there. Two Farmers was born – and you can find out all about it and shop here.

15. Love Roo. With Easter around the corner, I couldn’t resist including a bunny bonnet from one of my favourite handmade brands. The floppy ears on this Love Roo bonnet are lined with Liberty print floral fabric for a pop of spring prettiness. Shop here.

 

 

Written in collaboration with Minomug and UK Lingerie

Contains some affiliate links



22nd February 2019

Keep your family safe with Fairy Non Bio Pods and their child-lock system

Sponsored by Fairy

Having another inquisitive toddler in the house has reminded me just how adventurous these little people can be. Mabel managed to climb into her highchair this week by pulling it up to the sofa and using it as a step. I mean, seriously?! That is why I am all for cupboard locks, high shelves, and trying to grow a set of eyes in the back of my head at the moment – and that is also why the new child-lock system on the packaging of Fairy Non Bio Pods is a big relief.

Fairy know that little people can be inquisitive – and they have made their new packaging easy for adults to get inside (simply push the tabs together at the same time to lift the lid) but really quite impossible for children. And when you replace the lid, you just need to make sure you hear the click to ensure the child-lock is back in place – and it’ll be safe to store away until next time (see below video for child-lock instructions).

I’ve always used Fairy Non-Bio for my laundry as I’ve got quite sensitive skin – and when the children came along, I stuck with them. I’ve always been impressed – and when I noticed the new child-lock safety feature on the packaging, the product got an even bigger tick.

 

So what are the rules? Always keep children away from the washing machine drum and open packs when you are loading the laundry – and once you’ve finished and closed the packaging with a click, make sure you store it up high, out of reach, and behind a closed cupboard.

Safety should always come first – so why not make a New Year’s Resolution to make your laundry process extra safe for the whole family in 2019? Fairy Non-Bio Pods, with their child-lock system, are a great place to start.



21st February 2019

How to survive stay-at-home rainy days with the kids

Rainy day? Keeping kids inside the whole day isn’t easy – so how do we entertain them? Here are a few ideas to keep them entertained (and you sane!)

 

Host a movie afternoon

Pop the popcorn, grab the cushions and blankets, and settle down for the afternoon with a good movie. On platforms like Chili, there are hundreds of children’s movies that you can choose from. And for added fun, why not make your movie afternoon themed? Pick Frozen and you could bake Frozen-themed treats, colour snowmen, and get crafty with some icy-themed crafts.

 

Play games

Some of my favourite memories as a child involved playing games, with everyone laughing and just having a good time. You can play hide and seek, pull out the board games, get into a game of charades, or break out whichever games your kids love!

 

Get baking                                                   

It is always said that the kitchen is the heart of the home and so on rainy days, it is only natural to gravitate towards the kitchen at some point. You can have fun making a fun meal together (breakfast for dinner, anyone?), or whipping up some treats.

 

Read a story

Story time is a classic. You can huddle all together and take turns reading your favourite story. It’s a great way for your kids to use their imaginations – and who knows what sort of fun activities the story may lead you into?

 

Get crafty

A craft project is a great option for when you are stuck inside but you still want to do something. You can all use your imaginations and come up with something you want to create… perhaps a birdhouse that you can set out when the weather takes a turn?

Processed with VSCO with s1 preset

 

Indoor treasure hunt

An indoor treasure hunt is a fun way for your kids to use up some of their pent-up energy from being stuck inside. If you have one child, you can set up the treasure hunt that you both can do together. And if you have a couple little ones, you can have fun taking turns who plans the treasure hunt and who sets out on it.

 

What are some of your favourite things to do with your kids on rainy days?

 

In collaboration with Emily Jones



14th February 2019

Spotlight on: Laundryheap; the 24 Hour Laundry and Dry Cleaning Service available in 9 cities worldwide (including London, Dubai, Manchester, Birmingham and Coventry)

Sponsored Post

As parents, our lives couldn’t be busy. If we stay at home, our time is taken up with school and nursery drops, being a taxi driver for after-school classes, seemingly endless birthday parties to attend, and trying to squeeze in the household chores around it all. And if we are working parents, there are even less hours in the day to get things done – and this is why I love the idea of the company Laundryheap, who will pick up laundry from your front door shortly after you book a service online (or through the app) and will deliver it back within 24 hours, freshly washed, and ready to sort into drawers and wardrobes.

 

Laundryheap also cater for dry cleaning and ironing, ticking those off your ‘to do’ list too. Collection and delivery is free – and you can track the driver in real-time so you know when they will be arriving. Once your laundry has been picked up, you will be kept up to date with status notifications – and if you have any questions, the company offers live chat support.

 

 

Laundryheap is available in the following locations:

 

United Kingdom: London, Manchester, Birmingham & Coventry

U.A.E: Dubai & Sharjah

Ireland: Dublin

Netherlands: Amsterdam, Haarlem

 

Price wise, a standard, tumble-dried laundry-service is £14.95 in UK prices (60 AED in the UAE), with dry-cleaning and ironed laundry from £2 per item (4 AED in the UAE). Larger items, such as bedding and upholstery are priced per item, usually around the £8 mark (18 AED in the UAE).

 

Whether you use Laundryheap regularly or save it for the times you are very pushed for time (or from those times when you don’t have a washing machine at home), it should definitely be added to your bookmarks bar.

 

Head to www.laundryheap.co.uk or download the app.



5th February 2019

A family holiday to Italy: three regions on our travel wish-list

Going on a family holiday is something that takes a lot of planning and financial budgeting throughout the year – but ultimately, it’s well worth it for the memories that will stay with you and your children forever.

When it comes to destinations, Italy is always top of my wish list – and there are three regions that have made our family travel wish-list.

Sicily

Sicily is the largest island in the Mediterranean Sea, has a beautiful climate, and offers a unique landscape with numerous UNESCO World Heritage sites scattered throughout. It has an active volcano called Mount Etna and plenty of beaches for the kids to enjoy. There are also three main airports on the island so getting there is completely manageable, which is a major plus for travelling with kids. It is highly recommended to check out the Sicily villa rentals available through tools like Wishsicily for example. This kind of accommodation is perfect for a family holiday: you can really shift into relax mode in a peaceful and private villa, while avoiding separate rooms and noisy neighbours. For a trip to Sicily, trying local foods including fresh seafood is a must, as well as thinking up activities everyone wants to do beforehand so you can make the most out of the time there.

 

Umbria

Umbria is in central Italy and is often referred to as Italy’s green heart. It is bordered neither from a coastline or a border of a neighbouring country, making it the only the region to be so. Umbria has pristine countryside, delicious food and far fewer tourists than other parts of Italy. If you and your family are looking for a relaxing holiday surrounded by beauty, this region should definitely be on your list. You can spend your time visiting hilltop and Medieval towns and enjoying the beauty of nature.

 

Liguria

I have always dreamt of a holiday on the Italian Riviera – and Liguria is the place on our wish-list. A region in northwest Italy, it has a Mediterranean coastline. Liguria is well known, especially for Cinque Terre, the five colourful fishing villages that look like they are straight from a postcard. As a family, you can hop between the five villages by boat, go snorkelling and swimming in the open sea. If you want more energy of urban life, you can head to the city of Genoa, where you can visit the maritime museum ‘Galata Museo del Mare’ and explore the colourful port city.

 

Italy is the perfect place to travel with family and kids for so many reasons. Family is traditionally an important value in the Italian culture and it truly shows, even for and to visitors. The people are friendly, the food will make even the pickiest of eaters excited to eat, and there is plenty to do for people of all ages. Whether you want the sea, mountains, or countryside, big cities or small, relaxation or adventure, you can have whatever type of holiday you are looking for in Italy. And, you will all remember it forever.

post written in collaboration with Emily Jones