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Me & Mine | May 2016

Tuesday, 31 May 2016

How am I writing this month's Me & Mine post already?! It only feels like yesterday I posted last months, where we were so excited for our honeymoon. We had the most amazing trip and we've got serious holiday blues still - so much so I may have started looking at possible destinations for a summer holiday next year haha.

We managed to capture some amazing moments on our trip, and I think these photos are my all time favourite.. so far of course! These were taken on our terrace just before dinner one night. We set up the tripod and took about a hundred photos. We were getting the weirdest looks (we probably did look a little odd haha), but we didn't care. Looking a bit odd for a few minutes, has given us some gorgeous family photos that will last a lifetime! 



As well as our holiday we've had plenty of lovely family days out, including a trip to Chartwell, the zoo, and local parks. Even when Jack's been at work I've kept us busy with trips to see family, meeting friends and plenty of snuggly home time too. Jack and I even managed to have a date day while his parents took the kids to the farm. It was such a lovely day, and has made me want to do it more often!

Parker is completely on the move now - he's climbing, cruising, walking with his push along walker and basically being a little menace haha. I simply love this age though, and I cannot wait to see what my partners in crime will do in June!




The Me and Mine Project

Mummy & Me | May

Sunday, 29 May 2016

I finally managed to get some lovely shots of me and my littles this month! These are all from our recent holiday to Crete - when I gave Jack strict instructions to get as many shots of us as possible haha. Please tell me I'm not the only one who has to ask for these types of photos? I have about a million candid ones of Jack and the kids, whereas he will usually only take them if I pose and ask haha.

It's been a lovely month regardless of holidays though. Indie told me I was her best friend this week which was adorable - although she also said it to Jack and Parker haha, but I'm going to take it anyway! And Parker has finally learnt the word mama too!








Nicola... Life Through My Eyes

Weaning on Holiday | Our Top Tips

Saturday, 28 May 2016


Weaning while on holiday can seem scary. Will there be suitable food for my child? What will the highchairs be like? We also had the panic of how to make Parker's bottles - or more so how will we cope without the Prep machine haha.

We've been on two holidays with babies now though (Indie when she was 6 months and Parker at 9 months), and both have been a doddle when it came to feeding. I thought I'd share some of the weaning tips we've picked up along the way. These will be more aimed at the baby led style of weaning though, as that's the route we took with both of ours.

  • If you're bottle feeding, take enough formula with you for the duration of you trip. You may be lucky enough to find formula at your destination, but it'll most likely be a different brand. Be careful with bottled water too - make sure to check the mineral and salt content, and it will still needs boiling too!

  • If you've travelled to a hot country make sure to keep baby hydrated. Younger babies may want more feeds, although never put extra water in bottles. We made sure to get them used to a free-flow beaker before travelling so they could sip water throughout the day. 



  • Definitely take advantage of all-inclusive packages! These are perfect for weaning as there is so much food to offer. Both kids tried so many new and different foods while on holiday, that we would never have at home. And if they didn't like a certain food you could just go back and get them something else! Just make sure all food is piping hot and always check that meat if properly cooked. If you are worried though, most local shops stock baby food, so there's no need to load up your suitcase.




  • Make sure to pack your own cutlery, bowls, and lots of bibs. Most hotels won't have suitable things for little ones, so it's always best to take your own! We took a whole load of bibs too so that we didn't have to worry about washing them constantly. For day trips and the flights we used disposable bibs - so easy to use and can just be chucked in the bin after. If ever in doubt though, a muslin round the neck works just as well!



  • If you're worried about highchairs, take your own! There are plenty of travel highchairs around but the one we love is the fabric chair harness by The Gro Company. It was so cheap and folds up really small (I keep it in the changing bag most of the time).  


These are just some of the tips we've picked up along the way. Weaning on holiday doesn't worry us at all now, and I do look back and wonder why I ever panicked! As long as you've packed the essentials and are prepared, weaning on holiday can be just as easy as weaning at home - we almost found it easier as we didn't have to clean up the mess haha.

I'd love to hear your weaning tips while travelling? 

Fairytales, BGT & A Honeymoon Vlog | #LittleLoves

Friday, 27 May 2016

Phew.. what a week! We've been super busy with days out, visiting family and friends and I've had lots of work to do too. I can't decide if Indie's favourite bit was visiting nanny, Auntie Gemma or seeing mummy's friend and her twins! Every day she's been excited, and it's made me even feel even happier about my decision to stay at home with them. 

Read

After getting out of the habit slightly with bedtime stories (I blame our holidays for the lack of routine), Indie and I have been reading lots this week. I've mentioned it before, but I really do hope my children get my love for reading. We've been watching Harry Potter recently and both Jack and I agree the books just have so much more in them! Here's Indie reading me some stories about fairies - obviously dressed as Elsa too haha.

Watched

I do absolutely love Britain's Got Talent, so I thought I'd include it. But does anyone else think this year has just been a bit.. naff? Yes there have been some fantastic acts - that magician was amazing! - but dancing polar bears and the singing Davros? Bloody awful!

Heard

Justin Timberlake is back again - woohoo! 

Made

I finally edited our honeymoon vlog this week - getting over 2 hours worth of footage down to 10 minutes was hard work haha. I love how it turned out and have been watching it again and again all week. Take me back!

Wore

Nothing special from me. This little guy though - always wearing his dinner! His eyebrows were still orange this morning haha. He always seems so happy with himself though, and I suppose that's the joy of baby led weaning.

And Lastly...

It's another Bank Holiday weekend woohoo! Let's just hope the weather is actually decent... I'm not holding out much hope though haha.

Flying with Little Ones | Tips from the Bloggers

Thursday, 26 May 2016


Flying with little ones can seem scary, and I know many people who avoid it altogether. This doesn't have to be the case though! We've flown twice now with babies and once with a toddler, and both times the thought of the trip has been worse than actually doing it. 

You can see what we packed for our toddler Indiana (2) here, but honestly the best thing we did was take the iPad and of course lots of snacks! Then for Parker (and when Indie was a baby) a bottle on take off helped to settle him, and put him to sleep for a short while too. We then found taking it in turns with the baby helped. He was constantly entertained, and it gave each of us a break throughout as well.


This is what worked for us, but I'm very aware that all children are different. I thought I'd ask some fellow bloggers for their tips too, so hopefully with this list you'll find something that works for you! 

We filled a Trunki with various new toys, books, colouring etc that we got from cheapy shops and every so often got a new thing out to keep him amused during the flight - Beth Twinderelmo

Check what the airport has on offer to entertain little ones, a lot offer a free play area which can help with the boredom whilst waiting. - Laura dearbearandbeany

Pack a dedicated activity bag and just cram it with anything that you think your kids will enjoy and be entertained by. I crammed the iPad with fun games and downloaded as much Sarah and Duck off BBC iPlayer, sourced some inexpensive toys from Poundland etc, plus water pen drawing books. If possible, secure the waterpen to the notepad as we found pens and crayons to fall down and roll away quite easily. - Sophie sophieandlily


Put spare outfits/clothes into zip lock bags incase of accidents / spilt drinks / illness.
M
ake sure mum and dad have them as well as the kids. Clean clothes go on and dirty ones into the bag so doesn't ruin anything else in the bag. - Ellie havingababyandlivingathome


Feed the baby on landing and take off if you can. It helps their ears adjust to the pressure. - Naomi lifebynaomi

Something we used different on the way back from Australia just recently was the insert bag for the Trunki. You have to buy it separately but it was great as we packed core things in that such as iPad, small toys, colouring books etc. Then you can leave the Trunki in overhead locker and then the insert fits over the magazine pocket. Always think a calm, relaxed attitude from mum and dad is the best advice ever. - Kerry allaboutamininorris

Use all your hand luggage space to pack games, toys, books, snacks for them... Anything that will keep them busy! And use bags instead of cases so you can pop them underneath the seat instead of the locker - Heledd yummyblogger


We bought the Usborne travel activity cards, they were fantastic, my daughter loves them and in the end used them the whole holiday, not just for travelling. They are wipe clean so can be used over and over. - Vicki cake escapes 

Little magnetic drawing boards are a godsendOh and sticker books! - Lauren belledubrighton

We took a little miniature toy plane and talked all about it during out journey. Even though he'd only 2, Eli was obsessed and enthralled by the fact he was inside a plane like the little one he had. Take a fully loaded ipad or tablet - it WILL be your best friend, especially on a long flight. Be friendly to your fellow passengers .. you'll appreciate their niceness if your little angel kicks off during the flight - Cat rockandrollpussycat 

Plan flight times well, we always aim for 6/7 am flights as the excitement of the airport combined with a ridiculously early morning means they conk out as soon as they get on the plane - Becky themummyadventure


Never ever ever forget to put calpol into your hand luggage with a syringe. The one time you don't is usually the one time you need it on the flight! - Taslima Notmyyearoff

I think the main thing is to not overpack. It's good to have a change of clothes, a snack or two and a sticker book or game but other than that little ones probably won't need much. - Lauren mummyisagadgetgeek

Travelling with little ones is always going to be trickier, but it doesn't have to be stressful -  I really hope this list helps and gives you some ideas for the next time you fly. Thank you everyone who gave tips, I know I'll be using these next time we fly!

Going on Holiday with Trunki | Review

Tuesday, 24 May 2016


From the second we booked our Familymoon we knew we wanted to get Indiana a Trunki. So I was over the moon when Trunki sent Indie one of her very own for us to try! We went for the new Gerry the Giraffe design which retails at £39.99, but there are 21 different designs to choose from, as well as a 'create your own' option.

If you've never heard of Trunki before, they're basically a ride on suitcase for kids. They've even be hand luggage approved making them perfect for any type of trip - be it a sleepover, a UK break or a holiday abroad. We took ours on our recent trip to Crete, and it made travelling at the airport so much more enjoyable for Indiana.


The cases have so many cool features that make them much more than just your boring suitcase. Firstly the designs are gorgeous. They're fun, bright and so colourful! If you did decide to put it into the hold you'd have no trouble spotting it when you collect your suitcases. 

They're also HUGE! I was worried at first that we wouldn't actually get much in there, and tried to pack as little as possible on the way there (just in case it broke from the weight). Honestly I needn't have worried though, and I was surprised at just how much I could stuff in there on the flight home! The strap keeps everything secure, and the case can also be locked when it's in use so there's no worry that it will all fall out.

Indie never complained that the Trunki was uncomfortable, and was happy to sit on it to be pulled along. Once sat on it and holding on I wasn't worried she was going to fall off either. Indie is 2 and a half (but quite short for her age) and was still a little too short to really push herself along. She is probably too small to pull it along herself too (especially when full), so these features were a bit lost on her.



The large shoulder strap made it easy for Jack and I to carry it when we needed to. This is the same strap that you use to pull it along, which did get a little frustrating. I found it quite fiddly to get the clip on and off when switching between pulling it and carrying it - which isn't ideal when trying to deal with a toddler and an airport!

Although I love nearly everything about the Trunki, I will say it does have it's flaws. Firstly the hinge opening is an issue. The way it opens makes it VERY difficult to actually use on the plane. I heard about this from others, so actually packed Indie a backpack full of things we actually needed with us, and kept the Trunki in the overhead locker for the whole flight. The hinge also came apart a couple of times, even when it was hardly full - this was easy to pop back together, but wasn't something I expected from a brand new item!

It is also slightly difficult to turn once full and your child is riding on it. This wasn't really an issue for us as we weren't it too much of a rush, but I wouldn't advice turning tight corners with a child on it haha. Overall it is easy to pull along, and it also dealt with the moving travelators well too!


Overall though we absolutely loved using our Trunki. Yes we did carry it through security and on and off the plane, but we would have had to do that with any carry on bag we had. Indie loved that she had something of her own, and the design is unbelievably cute! I know we'll be using it for years to come, especially as it comes with a 5 year guarantee and the unisex design means Parker can use it once Indie has outgrown it! I've included a video below that shows what we packed for our outbound flight in our Trunki. It really does hold loads!



Disclosure - I received this product for the purpose of this review. However all opinions are honest and my own

My Sunday Photo | Parker's New Wheels {22.5.2016}

Sunday, 22 May 2016

It only feels like yesterday it was our little Indiana behind one of these walkers. Now it's time for her baby brother to be on the move! And on the move Parker was - the second he had it in his hands he was racing along with those first wobbly steps. I'm so not ready for this!




Photalife

Wicked Uncle | Review

Saturday, 21 May 2016

A few short weeks ago I was contacted by a company called Wicked Uncle, and asked if I wanted to review for them. I had never heard of them before, so of course did a little bit of research first. After just a quick browse my answer became a 'yes!'.


Wicked Uncle is an online shop full of fun, unusual and unique gifts for children. They don't just offer gifts though, they are unique in that they offer a present service for birthdays and other special occasions! These gifts can even be gift wrapped and sent with a handwritten card, and then you can choose to add a birthday reminder so you don't forget the next year!

The clue is in the name that they're not just for parents either - they're there to help uncles, aunts, grandparents, etc to find great gifts for children of all ages. This is made simple by their great categories, where you can pick a gift by gender and then age, by type of gift or just by picking from a selection of the most popular toys.

Even with the great categories I found it hard to choose. Not because I couldn't find anything, but because there was so much choice! I decided to get something for each child (although I knew Indie would claim everything anyway so tried to make it suitable for both).

The first thing I picked was this really sweet dinosaur push/pull toy. It also comes with a handle so once Parker can walk he can push it along - although as I thought Indie currently loves doing it for him! The toy is bright, fun and Parker loves pushing it backwards and forwards along the floor.



For Indiana I opted for a type of toy she hasn't played with before. These mini safari animals have been a huge hit already, and even came along with us on our recent summer holiday! They're hand-painted and excellent quality. Indie loves roll-playing with them and we've been able to teach her about a whole new set of animals which is great. I do wish you got more in a pack (especially for the price), but that hasn't seemed to bother Indie at all.




As a sneaky little treat for Jack and I, I couldn't resist these chocolate popping candy frogs. Jack seemed to approve as he ate most of them (he left me one haha), and I thought they were ok. I'm a Cadbury's girl so wasn't massively in love with the chocolate. I loved the popping candy aspect though.


Overall I was really impressed with the service and products from the website. They arrived well packaged, and it would have been easy for me to get them gift wrapped if I wanted to. Their range of toys is fantastic as there's some great products you wouldn't normally think to buy as a present! They do all seem on the pricier side though and gift wrap is £2.95 (plus £1.50 for each additional gift!), so do be aware of this if you are going to order.

Disclosure - We received £40 credit to spend on the website. However all opinions are honest and my own.

Holiday Blues, Smoothies & Game of Thrones | #LittleLoves

Friday, 20 May 2016


I can't believe I missed two weeks worth of #littleloves! We travelled on our holiday on a Thursday and then obviously flew back on a Thursday too, making it tricky to write. We had a fantastic time away though (you can read about it here), and it was SO refreshing to take some time off from social media / work / life if general! I've been non-stop since we returned, so I'm definitely making up for the time I took off haha.

Read

This was technically a holiday read, but I finally caught up and read The Unmumsy Mum! It was fantastic and I found myself reading so much of it out loud to Jack, or nodding along giggling away. It felt SO good to finally read too; I think the last time I read a book was when I was pregnant with Indie over 3 years ago. It's made me want to get back into reading, as I was really passionate about it before - so please hit me with your recommendations!

Watched

We had SO much to catch up on after a week away! Game of Thrones has been so good this series, especially after the disappointment of the last one. Somehow even though we were in Crete, with about 2 English TV channels, we still managed to find out the storyline before watching it though - what are the chances?!

Heard

Mama. Mama. Mama - Parker can finally say it! And it is the best sound ever... although come back to me when he's screaming 'muuuuuuuum' at me like his sister does and I may have changed my mind!

Made

We made some yummy banana and strawberry smoothies with our Nutribaby! Both kids absolutely loved them and they were so easy to make - we basically just made up the recipe haha. There will be a separate post up about them soon.

Wore

It's back to my normal wardrobe after a week of sun. I miss my sandals! It's typical we missed the sunny weather while we were away - come back sun!!

And Lastly...

I battled and won with my anxiety again this week. I met up with the girls and babies from my 'due in' group again, and honestly didn't even feel worried or anxious! The trip involved 2 different buses and took over an hour both ways too. I'm so proud of myself for going (I know it probably sounds silly), and I'm hoping it's another step closer to getting on that train to BML soon.

Weaning // Parker's Journey So Far

Thursday, 19 May 2016


I haven't shared much about Parker's weaning experience, especially compared to Indiana's where I posted weekly. Just like with Indie we have followed the baby led weaning approach. Parker has always been a greedy little boy, so we started just shy of 6 months (23 weeks exactly) he's now 41 weeks (just over 9 months) and he absolutely loves food!

It has been a totally different experience from the first time around though. The main difference is that Parker is VERY willing to be fed. He's never really picked up the concept of pre-loaded spoons; he can do them, but most of the time he prefers to either launch himself towards the spoon, or lets us feed him.



There are many 'purists' (yes I know, this is actually a term I've heard), who would therefore say we're not technically baby led weaning then. But we are. Parker feeds himself every meal. He chooses what he does and doesn't want to eat. He's never had purees, and eats 'real' food. Yes we may feed him a yoghurt or weetabix, but if he wants to stop he'll shake his head and close his mouth - I'd say that's very baby led!

Although Parker loves food, it did seem to take him a little bit longer to get the concept of chewing and swallowing. I think this may be because we started a little earlier though. Once he got the hang of it though it made all the difference - the biggest being he actually started sleeping at night. He eats lots now and has dropped his morning bottle, and we're getting closer to dropping the afternoon one too.




His favourite foods include: pasta (he could eat this all day every day if we let him), potatoes, bread (sandwiches, toast, etc), fruit, cucumber, cheese, rice, tomatoes, yoghurts and anything 'treaty' such as the organix biscuits. He loves water too and will happily drink from his Tommee Tippee beaker - something Indie never did!

One of the most exciting things happening at the moment is that we're working with Babymoov, as part of their #stresslessweaning team! You may have noticed Parker's fab new highchair, which is just one of the fab products we'll be testing over the next few months. We also have the help of a lovely nutritionist to answer any questions - so if you have anything you want to know or ask, make sure to leave a comment below, and I'll pass it over!


Disclosure - We are working with Babymoov as part of their #stresslessweaning team. I have no been paid and all opinions are my own.