10th December 2018

Making Toothbrushing Fun With Aquafresh

Sponsored by Aquafresh

There are certain brands that stay with you throughout the stages of parenthood – and for me, Aquafresh is one of those brands. Aquafresh Milk Teeth Toothpaste was the first toothpaste I purchased when my eldest Stanley got his first teeth back in 2012 (those same teeth that are now falling out quicker than the tooth fairy can flutter her wings!)  – and it’s the brand I have chosen for Stanley, Wilfred and Mabel’s toothpaste and toothbrushes ever since.

Mabel has 16 milk teeth in her mouth now (I think we’re just waiting for those pesky back molars!) – and as milk teeth have enamel that is thinner and more delicate than adult teeth, extra care is needed to keep those teeth healthy. Aquafresh Milk Teeth Toothpaste (for ages 0-2 years) can be used as soon as your baby’s first tooth emerges, as it’s tough on decay, but with low abrasivity, making it kind to little teeth.

 

Mabel is pretty good at letting me brush her teeth (and having a go herself!) But anything that can keep her attention throughout the process is a big help. I have always sung a song while brushing their teeth (remember that song in the film Grease, when Jan sings at the sleepover? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SFAwSqK3SdQ) That’s what I’ve always sung – and it seems to keep them happy enough while I’m brushing to get a really good clean of the teeth!

I recently found out about another way to keep them focused on tooth brushing for a full two minutes – and that’s the Aquafresh Brush Time app! After downloading the free app, you can start it when it’s time for teeth brushing (with different settings for different children) – and Captain Aquafresh and the Nurdles will sing and dance while your little ones brush! The app has a timer that counts down the recommended two minutes – and it also tells the child (and parent!) when it’s time to swap sides.

 

 

 

So what did we think? I didn’t think I’d ever use an app for tooth brushing, but I honestly think it can help – whether for older children like Stanley (who now brush their teeth themselves and I worry aren’t doing it for long enough or covering every surface) or for younger children like Mabel (who are so easily distracted and can clamp their mouth shut). It’s definitely worth downloading and having a go!

Download the Aquafresh Brush Time app here. Available on Apple or Android



30th November 2018

5 Ideas for children that love craft

My children are all quite creative and love nothing better than cutting, sticking, painting, and drawing – but whilst this is lovely and I always encourage it, I’m a bit sick of the clutter that ends up on our dining table…. So, I’ve put together some ideas for parents of crafty children on getting organised and minimising the mess. So here goes…

  1. Craft Drawers

I recently organised all of our craft things into drawers – and it has made a huge difference. Not only do the boys know where to get things when they want them, they also know exactly where to put them away when they have finished (or that’s the idea!) I got this set from Amazon, which is £49.99.

  1. Little Brian Paint Sticks

Mabel loves painting – but sometimes, I just can’t bring myself to deal with the mess that results from a few minutes of fun. That’s why I love Little Brian Paint Sticks, which are just like glue sticks but with colourful paint instead. No mess and lots of fun. I get them from Amazon here.

  1. Cabin Beds

The dream is for each of the children to have their own desks in the future, where they can get creative and store their own stationary – and when I spotted these cabin beds from Room to Grow, they were immediately added to my wish-list.

  1. Baker Ross

It can be really expensive to buy craft supplies for children (especially when they move through each activity in a few minutes), so I was happy to discover Baker Ross recently. This website has lots of fun craft packs (such as ‘colour in’ monster keyrings, penguin bauble making kits, and bumper packs of stickers) starting at just £1.99. Perfect for rainy days. Check it out here.

  1. JoJo Coveralls

I’ve had too many paint / glitter / glue disasters to risk letting them craft without an apron – and these coveralls from JoJo are perfect, as they can slide over any outfit in seconds.

Written in collaboration with Room to Grow



29th November 2018

Currently Loving – Christmas 2018

With December nearly here, it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas – and right on cue, here’s my ‘Currently Loving’ selection for the festive season!

The selection includes quite a few items from the Mum of Boys & Mabel gift guide, with quite a few discount codes still valid (all detailed below). I’d like to very quickly say a big thank you to the brands that worked with me on this year’s campaign and to every one of you that clicked and shopped links. 

So without further ado, here is what I am coveting, shopping, clicking, and enjoying this month…

1. Soggy Rabbit Illustrations. What better gift can there be than an illustration of your child’s much-loved cuddly toy – or your much-loved pet? Soggy Rabbit are currently offering 15% off all orders with the code MUMOFBOYSANDMABEL (valid to Dec 31st). And whilst the order date for Christmas delivery has now passed, you can pick up gift vouchers (or order for delivery after Christmas) at www.soggyrabbit.com

2. Paper Christmas by Emily Dawe. This really very beautiful book features 16 crafty paper projects for Christmas, including homemade bunting, wrapping paper, and decorations. Work on projects alongside a crafty child (Stanley, aged six, loves it!) – or have some fun on your own. Buy it at Amazon here – https://amzn.to/2TXDBog

3. First Wonder Boxes. First Wonder monthly subscription boxes are suitable for 4-8 year olds and have a different educational theme each month (not that they know it’s educational!) From dinosaurs, to outer space, to colours, to bodies, to bugs, each box contains activities, toys, stationary, things to build, games, and much more. This year, the company are offering a ‘Christmas Gift Subscription’ for the first time, which offers amazing savings up to 30% off the usual price at www.firstwonderbox.co.uk/gift/

4. Crafty Mama. Headed up by the very talented Charlotte, this online store makes dinosaur tails that attach around waists with velcro, beanbags in a range of very cool fabrics (I love the new dinosaur print!), butterfly wings to flutter in, and much more. Shop at www.craftymamastore.com

5. HUSH. I wish I could afford to buy the entire season’s collection from HUSH, but alas, adding this simple, chic star necklace to my wish list will have to do. Shop at https://www.hush-uk.com

6. Print My Smile. I am so happy to discover the personalised gifts from Print My Smile – from personalised notebook, to small initial mugs for the children, to calendars. Everything is very beautifully designed and very affordable – and you can take a further 20% off everything on the website with the code MUMOFBOYSANDMABEL (valid until Sunday 2nd December)!! Shop at  www.printmysmile.com

7. Esme Grace. Take your pick of beautiful winter hats, bonnets, and bibs from the hand-crocheted selection – and then choose the colours of the wool and extra details, like pom poms,. Everything is totally bespoke – and very high quality in terms of material and expertise. Shop at http://bit.ly/2QZwlqd

8. Lots of Lowe Designs. I discovered these stylish personalised prints last year – and promptly ordered an A4 Christmas Jumper Print (named with each family member). I just love it – and it’s something I know I’m going to get out with the decorations every Christmas! You can use the code MUMOFBOYSANDMABEL to snap up a 15% discount this Christmas, plus free shipping for all orders!  Shop at http://bit.ly/2RfkIeI 

9. Blueberry Boo Kids. I am the biggest fan of this clothing company, especially their personalised tops, hoodies and dresses. You can use an exclusive 15% discount on everything online at the moment too, with the code MOBAM15 (valid until 5th December, when they will close orders for Christmas, so be quick!) Shop at www.blueberrybookids.co.uk

10. Katie’s Little Book Bags. With Christmas Party bags starting at just £1.30 each and containing four items (yes, really!), this company offers the most amazing bargains for those looking to save a few pounds this Christmas. From activity bundles to keep the kids entertained at Christmas lunch, to Christmas Eve Bags, to Advent Book Bundles, and much more, you can shop at  http://bit.ly/2PUiVPv

11. Snuggle Bums. If you’re looking to treat your little people to beautiful, handmade gifts this Christmas, look no further than Snuggle Bums UK! This mama-run company (by the talented Kelly) offers a packed product range of tag blankets, personalised bunting, shopping trolley covers, baby bibs and much more! Everything is bright, impeccably made, and affordable (prices start at just £6). Shop at http://bit.ly/2PPSx9C

12. Simply Concrete. I never realised that concrete could create items quite so beautiful but I urge you to check out @simplyconcrete.ni on Instagram. I have some a set of coasters from the brand, painted with rose gold and I love them! If you want to order, be quick, as her order books close Friday 30th November for Christmas. Shop via Instagram here  –https://www.instagram.com/simplyconcrete.ni

13. Oliver Bonas. I’m a sucker for anything dinosaur themed – and this Christmas decoration from Oliver Bonas is ticking all the right boxes. Shop at www.oliverbonas.com 

14. The English Beagle. I just adore the new range of tablemats and puzzles at The English Beagle, which challenge children to find items hidden in the picture. The perfect way to keep them busy at Christmas lunch!  The company are offering 20% off all purchases on the website until the 20th December with the code XMAS18 – Shop here > www.theenglishbeagle.com

15. Oliver Bonas. I’ve got my eyes on these chic gold earrings, to bring a bit of glitz to my outfits over the festive season. Shop at www.oliverbonas.com 

16. My Busy Bots. Along with their brilliant busy bags filled with games and activities to keep children busy in quiet moments over the festive season, My Busy Bots have come up with a christmas range of gifts / stocking fillers to amaze and delight them!  And to help out that little bit more before Christmas, the company are offering 10% off everything on the website with the code XMAS10 – shop at www.mybusybots.com

17. The White Company. Of all the Christmas jumpers I have spotted this year for children, I think this is my favourite. It’s from The White Company and you can shop at www.thewhitecompany.com

18. Cotton & Bloom. Cotton and Bloom are a big favourite in my house for their fun, fashionable clothing. From glittery Santa tees, to personalised baby onesies, to matching Mama/Child sweatshirts, to birthday tops, to brother / sister tees – and much more! The prices are brilliant too. You can shop at www.cottonandbloom.com

 

This feature contains some affiliate links



30th July 2018

Currently loving… July 2018

I’m only just scraping through with this month’s ‘Currently Loving’ on the last few days of the month, phew. The truth is that my to-do list is growing by the day, with the boys off school for summer, but I’ve finally got there – and despite the crazy heat we’ve been having recently, I’m mainly looking ahead to the new autumn collections this month. From denim rompers, to Batman shoes, to pretty mugs (and lots of other brilliant gift ideas and buys for the kids). I hope you enjoy the selection – and I’ll be back with another ‘Currently Loving’ in August.

 

1. Boden Long Sleeve T-Shirts. I’m loving the new collection at Boden, especially these long sleeve tops in the boys’ section. My boys lived in long-sleeve T-Shirts from Boden like these a few seasons ago and I have been hunting for a design I like as much ever since, so I’m delighted to find a fab selection in this new collection. They will take the boys through that warm one minute / chilly the next transition from summer to autumn. Shop here.

2. Cath Kidston Backpacks. When it comes to back-to-school buys, I don’t think you can beat this fun, but stylish Super Dogs backpack. It’s brand new in at Cath Kidston and Stanley loves it! Shop here

3. H&M Home Banner. Oh how I love this banner! I’d like to string it over a cosy reading corner in the boy’s room – but I think it would look amazing over a bunk bed, above a cot, or in a play room too. And it’s only £8.99! Shop here.

4. Not on the Highstreet Bespoke Artwork. I’ve fallen head over heels for these bespoke handwriting signs from Not on the Highstreet! You can write any message and the company will make it into a sign, with the background the colour of your choosing. I’m staggered by the price too, at only £28. Shop here.

5. H&M Home Porcelain Cups. I adore these simple mugs by H&M Home, at only £6.99 each. They’re available in this gorgeous dusky green, pale pink, and white. I’d like to fill my cupboards with a mixture of all of the three colours. Shop here.

6. Oliver Bonas Tricerapot Planter. The perfect addition to your shelfie… This would encourage even me to be green fingered! Shop here.

7. My Busy Bots. You might have caught my post about these activity bags a few weeks ago, but let me just reiterate that they ARE TOTALLY GENIUS! Each bag is tailored to the age of your child, containing an activity that will keep them busy at home, at a restaurant table, or on a long journey. We tested them while away from home and the boys (and Mabel) loved them – and I now have a selection stashed in my nappy bag for quiet moments out-and-about. Read my social media post here. Shop here.

8. Marks & Spencer Mugs. I’m loving this new collection of mugs, which comes with motifs such as ‘Day Dreamer’, ‘Book Worm’, ‘Sleepy Head’, ‘Trend Setter’, and ‘Party Animal’. And at only £5 each, they will make amazing gifts. Shop here.

9. Oliver Bonas Dinosaur Salt & Pepper Pots. Two very cool salt and pepper pots, in the coolest coral hue. They’d make a brilliant gift. Shop here.

10. Next Batman Shoes. I can’t quite put into words how cool I think these shoes are… Just amazing. That’s Wilfred’s autumn footwear sorted! Shop here.

11. Baby Led Spreads. These jars contain healthy spreads for baby-led weaned babies, toddlers, and children – and can be used as dips for them to dunk vegetables or breadsticks or toast (or anything else on their plate), or stirred into pasta, loaded on baked potatoes, or used as bases for homemade pizza. You can use them at home or throw the jars into your bag for healthier meals when you’re out and about. There are six flavours to pick from (Mabel’s favourite is the “Carrot, Apple and Hummus”) with three of the recipes completely dairy-free – and until midnight on Wednesday, you can snap up 10% off all orders with the code 10OFF to snap up your discount (valid only once, per person). Postage is completely free too! Shop here.

12. La Redoute Denim Playsuit. If I had a baby or toddler boy, he would most certainly be wearing this denim romper. It’s one of the coolest things I’ve seen in the new autumn collections. Shop here.

 

 

Written in collaboration with My Busy Bots and Baby Led Spreads

 Contains some affiliate links



12th July 2018

SANCTUARY SPA WET SKIN MOISTURE MIRACLE – THE PERFECT PRODUCT FOR BUSY MUMS

I remember the days when I used to have the time to moisturise my skin head-to-toe after a long bath. The days when I didn’t run the risk of a baby waking up mid-way through the process. The days when my evenings were for me – and not for washing bottles, and picking up discarded pants from the living room floor, and making sure there was school uniform for the next day that didn’t have dinner splattered down the front. Those were the days.

These days, however, my time is limited – which is why I love Sanctuary Spa Wet Skin Moisture Miracle. This clever moisturiser can be applied in the shower – so when you climb out and dry off, your skin is already beautifully moisturised. You don’t have to engage your brain to remember to apply body lotion when you’ve dried off (when it’s actually full of what you need to pack in the kids’ lunchboxes for the next day), nor spend precious time actually doing it.  The job has already been done by this clever product in the shower – and the good news is that until the end of July, the product is only £5 from Boots (down from £8). Read on for more information and the link!

I used it today for the first time – and it left my skin feeling both soft and hydrated. The texture is like a body cream – thinner than a body butter, but thicker than a lotion. It glides onto skin under the water, allowing you to cover your entire body in a matter of seconds.

This summer, Sanctuary Spa has launched two new fragrances of the Wet Skin Moisture Miracle (to join the original Signature Sanctuary Fragrance that launched last year) – a floral ‘White Lily and Damask Rose’ and a citrus ‘Green Lemon & Orange Blossom.

I’m not a floral scent fan, so didn’t expect to like ‘White Lily and Damask Rose’ – but I was very pleasantly surprised. It has a spa-like, quite expensive scent – just like the scent on your skin after a luxury massage. I could smell it on my skin hours later.

The second fragrance ‘Green Lemon & Orange Blossom’ is the kind of thing I’d pick up from the shelf and already know I am going to like. I wasn’t wrong. It’s fresh, zingy, uplifting, and perfect for early mornings (even when I’ve been woken up 1,000 times by my children). This one was definitely my favourite.

And if you like these, you’ll also love the two Sanctuary Spa Shower Bursts – like a thick, whipped foam for skin, with equally tempting fragrances. I’m quite hooked on these now – it’s a bit of sensory treat for skin!

The three scents of Wet Skin Moisture Miracle usually cost £8 each and the two Sanctuary Spa Shower Bursts usually cost £7 each – but the good news is that all the products are just £5 each at Boots.com until July 31st

That’s a total bargain – and the perfect excuse to try them out!

You can find them here – http://www.boots.com/sanctuary-spa/sanctuary-spa-whats-new

 

Sponsored Post



24th April 2018

My Top 15 Summer Buys for Little Boys and Little Girls (everything under £26…)

There are some gorgeous clothes out there for little boys and little girls this season. From dinosaur-print swim shorts, to ditsy-floral sun hats, to ice cream motif T-Shirts, to heart-shaped sunglasses, I’ve spent some time today pulling together my top 15 buys from the high street for toddlers and small children – and the best bit is that nothing in my selection costs more than £26… So now all we need is the sunshine to come out again.

My Top 15 Summer Buys For Little boys…

  1. Crocodile T-Shirt (part of a set of three) at H&M, £9.99 – Link to buy
  2. Colour Block Stripe Jumper at The White Company, £24 – Link to buy
  3. Dungarees at H&M, £14.99 – Link to buy
  4. Ice Cream T-Shirt at Boden, from £16 – Link to buy
  5. Shark Sun Hat at Joules, £12.99 – Link to buy
  6. Black aviator Sunglasses at H&M, £3.99 – Link to buy
  7. Yellow sunglasses at River Island, £6 – Link to buy
  8. Star denim shorts at Next, from £11 – Link to buy
  9. Shark Rash Vest from The White Company, £22 – Link to buy
  10. Balloon T-Shirt from Scamp & Dude, £26 – Link to buy
  11. Bear Espadrilles from H&M, £5.99 – Link to buy
  12. Dinosaur Swim Shorts from La Redoute, £12 – Link to buy
  13. Ice Cream Swim Shorts from Zara Kids, £7.99 – Link to buy
  14. Cork Sandals from GAP, £16.95 – Link to buy
  15. Dinosaur Cap from Zara Kids, £6.99 – Link to buy

My Top 15 Summer Buys for Little Girls

  1. Tassel Dress from Next, from £15 – Link to buy
  2. Cardigan from Boden, from £22 – Link to buy
  3. Floral Sun Hat from Olivier Baby & Kids, £24 – Link to buy
  4. Striped All in One from La Redoute, £19 – Link to buy
  5. Heart Shaped Sunglasses from GAP, £6.95 – Link to buy
  6. Watermelon Swimming Costume from H&M, £5.99 – Link to buy
  7. Cat Hat from Zara Kids, £9.99 – Link to buy
  8. Bear T-Shirt (part of a set of three) at Next, from £11 – Link to buy
  9. Leather Sandals from H&M, £19.99 – Link to buy
  10. Rose gold leather sandals from Next, £15 – Link to buy
  11. Rash Vest and Frilly Swim Pants from Boden, from £26 – Link to buy
  12. Frilly Denim Top from GAP, £14.99 – Link to buy
  13. Liberty Print Bloomers from Etsy, £20 – Link to buy
  14. Bee Print Leggings from Mint Rainbow Shop at Etsy, from £13.50 – Link to buy
  15. Striped Bow Sandals from Zara Kids, £19.99 – Link to Buy

 

This blog post contains some affiliate links



26th February 2018

My perfect early Mother’s Day gift from notonthehighstreet…

For me, the perfect Mother’s Day present has to combine two things:

A bit of effort from the husband.

And a bit of effort from the kids.

It could be as simple as a homemade card, a bunch of flowers that they’d gone to the shops and picked out together, or a breakfast-in-bed that the kids had their hand in.

But if it’s something I can keep forever, as a souvenir of this exact moment in my life, it would be even better – and that’s exactly why I fell head over heels in love with this necklace by Minetta Jewellery at notonthehighstreet, which features your own child’s handwriting.

I think it makes the most wonderful gift for any mother or grandmother, who can keep it forever and wear a totally unique and personal message. I love the style of the necklace too and have been wearing mine layered with different length necklaces in shades of gold and rose gold.

To start the process of designing my necklace so I could show you all, I asked Stanley to sit down and write me some messages. His Daddy sat with him, helping him with spellings and ideas. He was so proud of his messages and when he’d finished, he asked me to pick my favourite.

And this was the one I loved most…

This message means a lot to me because my kids LOVE ice cream – and I feel like it was such a big part of our life when we lived in Dubai, because we always followed trips to the beach with gelato and often celebrated the end of the week with a trip to scoff ice cream on the way home from school. So the fact he’s written that they love me more than ice cream is just lovely – and I feel like it’s perfectly capturing something that is part of family life for us. It’s very personal and means a lot.

So once I’d chosen, I sent a picture of it over to notonthehighstreet (just taken with my iPhone)  – and within days, a package arrived on my doorstep. Inside was the most beautiful box – and inside that, was my totally unique, totally gorgeous necklace.

 

I couldn’t be more delighted with this necklace – and I think it would make the very best Mother’s Day present for other lucky mothers or grandmothers. It’s thoughtful, stylish, and so personal – and I know it would bring a smile to anyone’s face when they opened it on Sunday 11th March.

You can order your own here – www.notonthehighstreet.com

 

Disclaimer: This post is not sponsored, but Not on the Highstreet gifted me the necklace so I could share the gift idea with you.



22nd November 2017

Currently Loving – November 2017

Another month – and another ‘Currently Loving’ collage! And I’ve really enjoyed putting this one together, because there’s lots of things I am really coveting for myself and my own little people. It really is the very best time of the year – and I’ve been in online retail heaven picking my selection! Happy shopping!

1. Fable Heart Crown. I’ve been coveting this sequin crown for my three kiddies since I saw it on my friend Coral’s Instagram feed. It’s so beautifully crafted – and would look amazing sat on a shelf until they were ready to play. £27 at Not on the Highstreet – shop here.

2. Boden Reindeer Booties. I bought these reindeer booties (or very similar ones) from Boden last year for baby Mabel (just three months old then – squeal) and they are bringing back all kinds of memories. I’m tempted to treat her to them again as slippers… Too cute. £18 at Boden. Shop here.

3. La Redoute Watermelon Rug. I’ve just bought this watermelon rug for Mabel’s new nursery (it’s only taken 14 months to get her into her own room, but we’ve had a few obstacles in our way!) It’s going to add a splash of colour, plus bring back memories of weaning her on chunks of fresh watermelon in Dubai. Happy memories. £20 at La Redoute. Shop here.

4. La Redoute Velour Dunagrees. And while we’re on the subject of La Redoute, which I’ve just rediscovered after about a 10-year hiatus, I have also fallen in love with these pink velour dungarees for Mabel. So chic. £21 at La Redoute. Shop here.

5. Oliver Bonas Storage Suitcases. How gorgeous are these storage suitcases by Boden, which have just hit stores? They come in a range of sizes, each with a pastel trim. I am definitely coveting a set for my new house when we move in a few weeks. From £45 at Oliver Bonas. Shop here.

6. Wolf & Badger Origami Necklace. A few people have asked me recently what is on my personal Christmas list – and this Swan Origami Necklace is top of the list. It’s got a long chain, with a choice of gold, rose gold, or silver finishes. You can choose from a range of different animals – from dinosaurs, to rabbits, to elephants – but I love the simplicity of the classic swan. £120 at Wolf & Badger. Shop here.

7. Joy The Store Salt & Pepper Shakers. These cactus salt and pepper shakers are also on my Christmas list and will look fab in the middle of the dining table. £9 at Joy the Store. Shop here.

8. Parrots Don’t Live in the City Book. My boys are loving reading this story every evening at the moment – and with the most beautiful rhyming prose and stunning illustrations, I’m really enjoying reading it to them. If you are looking to add a book or two to a stocking or Christmas present, I highly recommend it. £7.99 at Amazon. Shop here.

9. Aayami Grandparents Photo Book. I’ve ordered lots of photo books from this company in the past and always been so impressed with the quality and service. I can’t wait to see the Grandparents Books I’ve ordered as presents for this year. I love the fact you can send over photos and get the team to design the book to save time too. From £27 at Ayaami. Shop here.

10. TR-Q Multivitamins. Since I’ve been telling you about these vitamins, which will shortly be available in pharmacies across Dubai, I’ve been asked about whether they really do taste as good as Ive described… And they really do. In fact, it’s kind of hard to remember you are taking a vitamin.  They contain nine essential vitamins and minerals, all of which are 100% of the Recommended Daily Value. And they are allergen free too, free of wheat (gluten), milk, eggs, soy, peanuts, artificial flavors, animal derivatives and preservatives. For more information, click here.

 

Written in collaboration with TR-Q

Contains affiliate links



4th May 2017

Capturing memories with Pretty Paper Studio UAE

18280860_10158663916535607_2110324407_nRewind to the 80’s and 90’s. Remember that feeling of excitement as you picked up a thick wallet of photographs from the printer? The fun of ripping it open and flicking through those photos for the first time? And then the joy of choosing which photos went into albums, taking time to stick them in, and then spending time looking through the pages to remember every moment?

I remember all that – and as much as I love the convenience of the digital age, I miss it. I miss the physical photos and the albums to flick through. I miss grabbing a cup of coffee, choosing an album, and taking a trip down memory lane. So when the lovely team at Pretty Paper Studio UAE(an online store packed full of amazing craft supplies, paper, and stationary) asked if I’d like help creating a photo album of Mabel’s first days in this world, I jumped at the chance.

Fast-forward to yesterday, when I arranged to meet Pretty Paper Studio for a crafty morning. I’d prepared in advance, by choosing the photos I wanted to include in my album – and I decided on capturing those first two precious weeks of Mabel’s life. I really enjoyed the process of sorting through the photos and what I’d like to include – and I definitely enjoyed the moment of being handed the wallet of photos from the printer and flicking through. Even the smell of the photos took me back to my childhood and teenage years!

I met Neelu at Pretty Paper Studio over coffee at Fortnum & Mason (very civilised I know!) – and when she arrived, she came armed with the most exciting crafty bits. I’m a creative person by nature, but I simply never have time anymore to do it – so this was a real treat.

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Most of the items came from a company called ‘Project Life’ – I had never heard of it before, but since posting on my Insta-Stories yesterday, I have found out it has a big fan base (several of my followers were very excited to hear it is now available in the UAE). The premise is really simple too.. You buy an album with clear pockets – and then you choose your accessories. From printed cards that fit into the different pocket sizes, to stickers printed with phrases and motifs, to cardboard inserts that you can write on or use to decorate. It’s like scrap-booking, but a lot easier.

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So then it was time to get crafty – and I had a lovely morning slotting in photographs, embellishing them, and adding hand-written details (with the odd sip of coffee too!) Below are some photos of what I created on the morning – and make sure that you scroll to the bottom for a link through to the online store, where you will find all of this (and a lot, lot more) to start getting crafty and capture your own memories.

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Thank you Pretty Paper Studio for helping me to do this! It was just the prompt I needed to get creative and capture some memories of those precious early days!

Visit www.ppsuae.com to shop  the ‘Project Life’ range yourself.

In collaboration with Pretty Paper Studio UAE



26th April 2017

My Top 10 Buys from Linen Obsession

Have you heard about the amazing online linen store LinenObsession.ae? Owned by an expat Mummy like us, you can expect to find bed linen, towels, and accessories for every price point – but with everything very suitable for Dubai lifestyles, especially Mummies.

So when founder Pamela asked me if I wanted to offer my readers a 10% discount on the website (code Mabel10), I jumped at the chance – and to help inspire you, I have pulled together the 10 buys that are currently on my wish list (with links to click through and buy).

Happy shopping – and I really can vouch for the quality of this company. Visit www.linenobsession.ae for a browse.

1. The Hotel Quality Set 

1 Real Hotel

Linen Obsession “Real Hotel” Bed Linen 300 Thread Count Cotton Sateen – from 50 AED

You know when you climb into bed in a hotel room and you dream about your own bed being just as comfortable? According to the experts, it can be – you just need to buy the right bed linen. This affordable set boasts a fantastic thread count and has been personally selected by the Linen Obsession team to be just like a hotel bed. It’s on my wish list.

Buy online here (use code Mabel10 for 10% off)

2. The Pretty Set

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Christy “Victoria” Bed Linen – from 624 AED

I adore the pastel colours of this floral duvet cover and bedspread – and with 200 Thread Count Cotton Percale, it would feel amazing climbing into bed too.

Buy online here (use code Mabel10 for 10% off)

3. The Kids Set

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Humming Bird Ice Lollies Kids Bed Linen – from 295 AED

My boys love ice cream and I am very tempted to add this fun print to their collection (ice lollies on one side, colourful sprinkles on the other). It’s great quality too (which is important for little people), with 180 thread count and 100% cotton.

Buy online here (use code Mabel10 for 10% off)

4. The Luxury White Set

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Henry Christy ‘Luxury Supima’ 500TC Sateen Bed Linen – from 375 AED

I have the bottom sheet in the range on my bed right now – and oh my goodness, it feels incredible! So simple and stylish in its design, with an incredible 625 threads per 10 square cm. I’m not surprised this is one of the company’s best-sellers!

Buy online here (use code Mabel10 for 10% off)

5. The Statement Set

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Christy ‘Kashvi’ Bed Linen – from 1,250 AED

There’s something I adore about this set by Christy, with its quirky pattern and bold hues. And another 200 Thread Count makes it very high quality too.

Buy online here (use code Mabel10 for 10% off)

6. The Luxury Towels

1 Real Hotel

Christy ‘Supreme’ Towel and Bath Mat Collection – from 75 AED

Need some new towels in your life? You won’t beat these beauties, which are 650 grams per square metre, making them the fluffiest, thickest, and softest towels you’ll ever have the pleasure of owning. I want one in every size!

Buy online here (use code Mabel10 for 10% off)

7. The Stylish Set

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Christy “Sofia” Bed Linen – from 624 AED

The blues and greens of this floral bed spread are super stylish and on trend – and with the signature Christy 200 Thread Count Cotton Percale, you can guarantee the high quality and comfort too.

Buy online here (use code Mabel10 for 10% off)

8. The Chic White Set

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Christy ‘Penny’ Bed Linen – from 249 AED

There is something incredibly chic about plain white bed linen – and when it’s this amazing set from Christy, complete with a delicate lace trim, it pretty much wins on the style front. That’s not all, as you are getting 300 thread count too.

Buy online here (use code Mabel10 for 10% off)

9. The Colourful Set

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Esprit Modern Ethno Bed Linen – from 94 AED

This affordable set from Esprit features the most beautiful colours and on-trend geometric print. Perfect for your bed – or for a spare set. And with 300 thread count per 10cm2, you are getting seriously good value for money too.

Buy online here (use code Mabel10 for 10% off)

10. The Decorative Touches

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Christy ‘Vibe’ Quilted Pillowsham and Throw – from 150 AED

I have this throw on my own bed and I love it. It’s thick, heavy, beautifully textured, and very affordable – and it can transform your bed in seconds.

Buy online here (use code Mabel10 for 10% off)

For a browse of the whole website, visit www.linenobsession.ae – and make sure you use code MABEL10 to snap up your 10% discount across the whole website! Happy shopping!

Written in collaboration with Linen Obsession