30 August 2017

PINK PARCEL AUGUST 2017


Periods suck right? I always forget to buy pads or whatever, mine are still irregular as hell because I'm breastfeeding Lily still and basically it's the shittest surprise ever. They hurt, they ruin your underwear and basically they fuck your week right up. To make bleeding from an internal organ more enjoyable, I signed up to Pink Parcel.
Pink Parcel are a monthly period subscription box which not only send you food and beauty products every month it also allows you to customise the protection you get too (pads, tampons or a combo of both). Awesome sauce.




KUSMI TEA BB DETOX TEA SAMPLE


Tea samples are a winner, this is green tea with grapefruit which is something I've never seen before and I've seen a lot of tea. 


SILVINA'S NATURE RASPBERRY & WHITE CHOCOLATE CROWNS FULL SIZE


I have no idea what these are but they look and sound amazing. Who doesn't like raspberry or white chocolate?


NAILS INC GEL EFFECT NAIL POLISH FULL SIZE


I got Queens Gardens which is a turquoise blue colour, Lily has stolen this so far, the lid comes off like a little protective cap type majig and she thinks it's the best thing ever.


SPORTFX COOL DOWN PRIMER AND RECOVERY GEL FULL SIZE


This is basically a primer/gel that cools your face and honestly, it really surprised me. It's like putting a wonderful, tingly cooling heaven on your face. It is recommend for after workout but haha. Like I have time to do that. This is something I would definitely re purchase, the cooling effect is fantastic. I put some on before doing my make up on a particularly bad anxiety day and it definitely helped with the hot flushes I get when I'm panicky. Definitely one for my anxiety self care I reckon.


EVOSHAVE HANDHELD RAZOR FULL SIZE


When I first saw this I thought "eh" it's just a short ass razor. I tried it and it was the most difficult thing to use in the history of the world ever. I have Hypermobily Syndrome so maybe it's just my sucky joints but it didn't shave very well and generally, with razors, you kinda want them to shave pretty well. Maybe it was the fact I hadn't shaved in forever and even the plug hole struggled but this razor just didn't do it for me. 

NATIVE UNEARTHED DEODORANT BALM FULL SIZE

I've actually been looking for a deodorant like this, I've tried a natural one from Lush before and loved them. I generally prefer natural products over chemical filled ones if I'm honest so I'm really excited to try this.


PHIZZ REHYDRATION VITAMINS AND MINERALS FULL SIZE


These are effervescent tablets your dissolve in water to give you a vitamin packed drink. Ben will more than likely use these as he drinks those Berocca things. These would be great for adult headaches, after the gym and thinking about it, they would be great for post panic attacks with the amount of water you lose from sweat so these would be a great way to boost that back up.


VITAMASQUE FRUIT SLICE MASKS FULL SIZE


These look amazing! Cucumber slices sting my eyes for some reason and I never really know what else to use so I'm looking forward to these!




29 August 2017

WHAT MY TODDLER ATE TUESDAY [29/08/17]



BREAKFAST


// Fromage Frais
// McDonald's Pancakes with Syrup


McDonald's breakfast is a breakfast of champions. We shared a couple of bacon and egg McMuffins and pancakes and it was good. Lily had 3/4 of a pancake and a Fromage Frais. She wasn't too sure of the pancake before this was technically her second breakfast but I felt mean not letting her have some haha.


LUNCH


// Cream Cheese & Blueberry Toasted Bagel
// Kiddylicious Veggie Straws
// Coconut Chunks

Lily is blueberry mad at the moment so I thought I'd jazz them up slightly. I spread some cream cheese on a bagel thin, scattered some blueberries and stuck it in a toaster bag and toasted it for a couple of minutes. Bit more interesting than a marmite sandwich which is what she's been having quite a lot lately. She also had a bag of Kiddylicious Veggie Straws which feature in pretty much every lunch time. The coconut I didn't leave on her plate for her to self feed because she would more than likely ram it in and end up choking, things like that I will hold for her because quite frankly, she terrifies me haha.


DINNER


// Slow Cooked Vegetable Stew & Dumplings
// Ella's Kitchen Peach + Banana Pouch

This is the easiest thing ever to make, I literally just chop up a load of veg, in this one I put swede, potatoes, sweet potatoes, courgette, carrot and parsnip, throw it in the slow cooker with some stock and leave it to it. Whack in some dumplings an hour and a half before the end and it's done! I love using my slow cooker because it's like dinner cooks itself and it makes the house smell amazing.

She had an Ella's Kitchen peach and banana pouch for pudding which she loves. We quite often give her a fruity pouch for pudding if we don't have any fresh fruit in or if I'm feeling super lazy. Her favourite at the moment is the banana and coconut one though!


Catch up with last weeks post here!



27 August 2017

LUSH SLEEPY - THE MUST HAVE ITEM FOR SLEEP DEPRIVED PARENTS?


If you are a sleep deprived parent who has resorted to google before and searched "how long can the human body survive without sleep" and have a baby who thinks they're an owl, then you have probably noticed the viral stories about this Sleepy Body Lotion from Lush being the answer to all your prayers.

I managed to grab the last pot of this from my local Lush because I too, am one of those sleep deprived parents with a toddler who thinks she is some sort of nocturnal woodland creature, so I trudged all the way through town in my Mombie state to buy this.

I decided to take it through it's paces and keep a log of Lily's sleep because we all know babies are unpredictable and I wanted to be sure that it really was Sleepy that was helping her sleep. So here is the run down of the last week:


Day 1 (no cream): She took close to an hour to settle and woke so many times I lost count but at least every 1.5 hours. This is pretty standard.

Day 2: I gave Lily a bath with a bit of Ickle Baby Bot bath bomb (about 1/5) and used a 5p amount of Sleepy and put it on her arms and chest. She fell asleep before milk, woke up as I put her down in bed but settled quickly. Woke up twice throughout the night.

Day 3: Put another 5p amount of cream on her arms and chest before bed. She completely lost her sh*t because she was so sleepy and wanted to go to bed but I was taking too long to quickly pick up toys etc. Fed her to sleep and she was asleep within 10 minutes and didn't wake up until the morning (actual morning, not baby morning).

Day 4: After a disaster wearing her sisters pants and an impromptu bath with another bit of the Ickle Baby Bot bath bomb and Sleepy cream after she went from this to asleep in less than half an hour without milk and slept through for 7 hours, had some milk and went back to sleep.

Day 5: I only managed to get a bit on her chest post complete meltdown about her teeth. She's cutting a molar and we had to crack open the calpol and bonjela before bed. She took a little longer going to sleep, maybe about 20 minutes this time but I had taken her straight to bed after putting the cream on rather than waiting a bit this time. She woke a fair few times throughout the night which I have put down to teething but she settled back down relatively easily.

Day 6: Bath with Ickle Baby Bot again with Sleepy put all over her chest and arms and she went to sleep without milk again. She woke at about 7am but went back to sleep until 9am.

Day 7: Another bath tonight, normally we avoid bathing her more than a few times a week because of her eczema but she was covered in raspberries! This time we didn't use Ickle baby Bot but put Sleepy on her arms and chest after. She slept through until about 5 or 6 and then went back to sleep after milk.

Day 8: No bath tonight and she fell asleep before I got to put some on. I just about managed to pop the smallest bit on her arms though but I could hardly smell it. It also seems to be helping the eczema in her arm crease, she's been itching again lately but this appears to be healing it up a treat so far. She slept a solid 4 hours before becoming restless. She was frantically itching the eczema on her hand so I think that was bothering her more than anything but her sleep was less relaxed having not been able to put much on.

Day 9: I smothered her in cream tonight, chest, legs, arms, back. She even put it in her mouth (wouldn't recommend that though) and she fell asleep without milk and slept until around 7am.

Day 10: Again, I smothered it everywhere. She didn't fall asleep without milk today which I anticipated because she's had a busy day full of hearing tests but she did fall asleep quickly and slept until 7am, more milk and she's still asleep at 10am.

Day 11: I gave her a bath with Ickle Baby Bot and smothered her in Sleepy again, bit of milk and she was out for the count until a sociable hour in the morning.


Is it a miracle product? Well, I've been using it on Lily for over a week now and while I wouldn't go as far to say that it will 100% get your baby to sleep through the night, but since using it Lily has definitely settled a lot better and despite teething and eczema related wakings, it has improved her sleep duration and made the transition into her bed a lot easier too. The extra bathing has irritated her skin though and she has patches of eczema on her legs again.

So in conclusion it certainly helps her settle down at night but I think it's a bit ambitious to say it will make your baby sleep through the entire night. However, I have definitely noticed a big improvement in how quickly she has been settling to sleep and the wakings are hit and miss really depending on teething pain etc at the moment although absolutely not as frequent as before!

I have also noticed that the nights I've used Ickle Baby Bot she sleeps even better so a huge shout out to the little blue guy too which is probably one of the most underrated (and cheapest) bath bombs ever. I used it everyday with Eloise and she slept so much better than Lily so that's got to mean something right?

On the whole she has definitely been sleeping better since I've been using it and I will continue to buy it once this tub is finished because of how well it relaxes her. That and the scent (which is identical to the bath bomb Twilight) is just bloody amazing.

This tub is 215g and cost £13.95.




24 August 2017

BABY PRODUCTS VS ECZEMA PRONE SKIN


Lily has always had quite sensitive skin and was diagnosed with eczema a while ago now so it's fair to say we have probably tried 90% of the products targeted at sensitive and eczema prone skin. I thought it might be helpful to do a few round ups of the products I've tried from bubble bath and shampoo to moisturising cream and laundry detergents. This first post will be concentrating on a small collection of bath products:

MUSTELA 2 in 1 CLEANSING GEL*

This we have been using for Lily's hair for the past 5 weeks. I'm not overly keen on the scent, it smells a bit like plants to me and I prefer the snugly baby scents but since using it the eczema she had began to get at the back of her head along her hairline has completely gone and she doesn't itch there at it anymore! It also leaves her hair lovely and glossy. I have also on occasion used this as a face wash and it was lovely on even my sensitive skin, my face normally freaks out at anything I put on it but this didn't cause a reaction at all.

AVEENO BABY DAILY CARE BODY WASH

We bought this after initially being prescribed the cream in the hope it would be just as soothing and unfortunately nothing really stood out. It doesn't dry Lily's skin out or irritate it which is great but it didn't really live up to my expectation after loving their moisturising cream. The scent is quite a generic body wash smell which was a bit disappointing because I do love to have a lovely cuddly baby scent for bath products really. The moisturising cream they do is fantastic though! It didn't completely get rid of her eczema but it soothed it really well. Definitely worth a look.

CHILD'S FARM BABY BEDTIME BUBBLES

This was the most uniquely scented one, it smells of tangerines which is something I'd never really come across when it comes to baby bubble baths but it is absolutely gorgeous. Not your generic snugly baby scent but lovely and fresh all the same. We used the 3 in 1 Swim wash for after swimming lessons too which smells like strawberries!

MUSTELA CLEANSING CREAM*

This feels super thick, when I first tried this I was a bit worried it would be difficult to wash off and I thought it may irritate Lily's skin with the amount of washing it did take to get off. I found that if it is lathered up on a sponge instead of just on my hands it was easier to rinse because it was mostly bubbles then. It's also fab as a shaving cream (I should probably stop stealing the kids bath stuff though).

BURTS BEES BABY BEE BUBBLE BATH

This is one I've used since Eloise was a baby and I love it. The scent is absolutely amazing and receives top marks with the snugly baby scent criteria. It's what we used when Lily was a newborn and was my go to wash with Eloise too. It didn't irritate either of my kids' skin but it also didn't improve it, so a sort of win. It's quite expensive but the bottle lasts ages. It's like the T.A.R.D.I.S but in shampoo/body wash form.




*Post contains PR samples, all opinions are my own, as always.

22 August 2017

WHAT MY TODDLER ATE TUESDAY [22/08/2017]


Welcome back to another "What My Toddler Ate Tuesday", I thought it would be fun to share what sort of things Lily eats in a day! Although technically not all of the things are eaten on a Tuesday, just on whichever day I remember to take photos haha!

BREAKFAST


// Cinnamon Porridge

Looks Pinterest worthy right? All I did was whack a bit of cinnamon and brown sugar on top of some porridge! I am also ridiculously excited about having milk delivered by the milkman! It's the kind of milk that come in bottles with cream on top aka the best thing ever.


LUNCH


// Cheddar Cheese Sticks
// Quorn Cocktail Sausage
// Little Dish Chickpea Pop Pops
// Cottage Cheese
// Strawberries
// 1/2 Plum
// Heinz Farleys Rusk Biscuit
// Smoothie (Which Eloise stole haha)

Bit of a random picnic lunch but Lily's are a lot like this really. She loves having lots of different choice and also smearing the cottage cheese (which was her favourite here) everywhere haha. She prefers the normal rusks to these little biscuit ones because they're quite hard in comparison and she's teething at the moment. 

DINNER


// 1/2 Spicy Cheesy Enchilada
// Cottage Cheese
// Blackberries
//Little Dish Coconut Go Gos

I went a bit (okay, very) overboard with the spices in these enchiladas and I actually couldn't finish mine they were so hot! Lily on the other hand wolfed down the lot! Mouth of steel that one! I gave her some more cottage cheese in case the spice was too much but she was fine and ate the lot. The Little Dish Go Gos are adult level nice too, these are the coconut ones and Lily loves them!

Check out last weeks W.M.T.A.T here.



21 August 2017

BACK TO SCHOOL // MY NAMETAGS GIVEAWAY!



I have teamed up with My Nametags to give you beautiful people a chance to win a sheet of name tags worth over £11!

These Hello Kitty themed labels* are so pretty, you also have the choice of Mr Men and their regular custom designs where you can choose the a background, font and design from cats to flowers and cars to pirates. The design page is super easy to use and kid friendly. Eloise helped me design these after pondering over the red and black design because black is her new favourite colour apparently.



They stick on anything, from shoes to drink bottles, jumpers, lunch boxes. Basically anything school or nursery related that you need them to stick to, they will. No more black smudges on socks from sharpies in school shoes or re writing names on drink bottles every week!

I remember buying those terrible sew on labels when Eloise first started school, I stitched on one which took me what felt like an hour (and probably wasn't that far off) and gave up. A friend recommended My Nametags and those labels are still intact after being in a washing machine and/or dishwasher, 2 years later!

They are by far the best name tags I have ever tried so for your chance to win some head on over to twitter for the instructions on how to enter! But hurry! You only have until 12pm on Monday 28th August to enter! Go go go!



Terms & Conditions 

This giveaway is open to UK residents only 

The prize cannot be exchanged for any cash alternative 

The deadline for entering is 12pm on Monday 28th August 2017, any entries after this time will not be counted

The winner will be chosen at random using a random number generator

The winner will be announced on Twitter at 6pm on Monday 28th August 2017




*I was sent these name tags but all opinions are my own, as always.

BACK TO SCHOOL SURVIVAL GUIDE


Being a parent is stressful, I think we can all agree on that and one thing riiiiight up there near the top of stressful things is that back to school shop. Have you remembered everything? How is your baby now a fully fledged school pupil? Where is the best place to go for uniform? What's the best drinks bottle? Where can I get name tags that don't fall off within seconds? Well, I'm here to help! This is my 3rd year of shopping hell and I think I have finally nailed it!



For polo shirts, the cheapest I've found are Aldi, they are about a quid and lets face it, there is no point buying expensive white things because there is a 100% chance most of it will be trashed by Christmas.

For regular shirts I like Asda, they're reasonably priced and the girls shirts are just nicer. Eloise has a Hello Kitty one from there which she was super pleased with.

Plain jumpers and cardigans, any supermarket will have them. We have one from Asda which is over a year old and still kicking.

Pinafores, skirts, trousers and shorts are tricky. I found finding these that fitted Eloise when she started school in year 1 so hard because she is so tiny! BHS came up smallest, followed by Next. Asda tend to run quite big, as do Matalan. The nicest quality I've found are M&S and Next.

Summer dresses I really rate M&S again, they're prettier and fit nicer and I've found they last a hell of a lot longer too. Next come in second followed by Asda.

**For summer dresses and pinafores etc, basically the things that don't stain as easily or aren't worn for as long check out eBay, charity shops and local selling pages on Facebook. I bought Eloise's summer dresses for next year second hand and they cost me 99p for three. Shirts and polo shirts probably aren't worth getting second hand because they get mucky so quickly but children grow so fast that clothes are more often than not, in perfect condition. All of Eloise's pinafores and summer dresses are in a box waiting for Lily to start school because they were worn for all of 5 second before Eloise grew out of them, most will be third hand by the time Lily gets them and they're perfect still.

Shoes I recommend Startrite. Clarks never had shoes that fit Eloise as she is a H in width and it's 2 years running now that they're had literally nothing. Not only that but we bought Startrite shoes last time and they lasted the entire school year (minus 1 week). Eloise has hypermobile joints and femoral anti version so she literally takes the front out of shoes in a matter of minutes but these lasted for a year and came up beautifully with a bit of polish. They probably could have lasted the last week too but there was a hole just starting to appear in the sole so we opted for trainers for the last 4 days.

For trainers I always go with Sketchers, they're the lightest trainers I've found and with Eloise's joints they're the most comfortable for her. And some of them flash which is what every kid wants.

I've written wellies down because most schools these days take part in Forest School so wellies are a must for the wetter months (which in the UK, is basically every month).


Drinks bottles are a trial and error thing. I don't buy sports caps after reading those stories about them going mouldy and making kids ill so I always go for the bottle top or open flow ones like Sistema which are sold in most supermarkets. We have tried many, many bottles before but this is the brand I have repurchased from many times now. The one in the photo cost £3 from Asda, we also have a couple of their Trio bottles which are fantastic and easy to clean. The top screws off just like a bottle and then it screws off further down to create a cup. This one might be a little tricky for Reception age littles so you might be better sticking to the other one but for older children this one is great.

The open tops mean that there are no hidden parts that can harbour mould and other nasties. I cold water sterilise them every couple of weeks too or after an illness to make sure they're extra clean and get rid of that old squash smell plastic seems to get.

Name Tags you're going to want to go with mynametags. They are by far the best labels I've used and are still firmly stuck nearly 2 years later. These Hello Kitty Name Tags* above are this years name tags! How cute are they?!

  • Cereal and toast are your friends, dig out the Coco Pops, Frosties and Nutella if you have to because they will have their sugar rush in the playground with any luck.
  • If you're in a rush, cereal in a sandwich bag in the car still counts as breakfast.
  • Do a test run before if this is your first year, that way you won't be late or ridiculously early on the actual day. Take into account that there will be slightly more traffic on an actual school day though but timing how long it takes to get you all ready and out before 9am will help you judge accurately what time you need to drag yourself out of bed.
  • Check everything fits, this way you will figure out what you have forgotten and what needs replacing.
  • Also check your child can get their uniforms on and off because most schools will require then to get changed in and out of their PE kits themselves. This is where polo shirts and skirts or trousers come in handy.
  • Buy more tights and socks than you think you need. Kids fall over a lot and the tights will be full of holes pretty quickly. Having back ups saves last minute uniform dashes. Socks also get eaten by the sock monster. You will never see him, but he is definitely there.
  • Talk to your child and work through any worries they may have about starting school, role playing is a great way to do this.
  • Don't forget to stick name tags on everything if you don't want it going missing in 0.5 seconds. Enter my giveaway to win some awesome stick on labels which survive anything! Head on over to twitter for the instructions on how to enter! But hurry! You only have until 12pm on Monday 28th August to enter!
  • Talk to the school about your child's anxieties, they won't be the only nervous one but making the school aware of the details will help them to make your child feel more at ease
  • Role play schools, explore their worries and show them all of the fun things they will love about going to school
  • Go and visit the school a few times during the holidays, you won't be able to get in obviously but seeing 
  • Draw a heart on your child's hand and one on yours, when my daughter was going through a rough patch at school I did this and told her that every time she felt worried or scared to look at her hand and know that I was always thinking of her and giving her my strength if she needed it and we may be apart for now but we are connected by our hearts. 
  • Write a little note in their lunch or if they can't read quite yet a little heart will do just as well. 
  • Get them a worry doll. I was an incredibly anxious child and I remember having these. You take a doll and tell it your worry, pop it under your pillow as you sleep and the worry will go away.
  • Set your alarm!!!! Don't forget this one unless you have nocturnal small children. Although even they will probably decide to have a lie in if you actually need to be up early. 
  • Iron the uniform that has probably gotten creased by now.
  • Pack the PE kits and lay out the uniform ready for the next morning. I have a little peg next to Eloise's bed which I hang her uniform on every evening (I ask her to but her version of hanging including screwing her shirt up and balancing it behind the hanger)
  • If you're little one is having a packed lunch then make and pack it all up the night before and popping it in the fridge will save you so much time in the morning. Once you've got the hang of everything and functioning throughout your new routine on no sleep becomes almost robotic then leaving it until the morning will be less of a disaster whilst constantly asking your kid to put their bloody shoes on for the 56,000,000th time. Ice pops act as ice blocks if you've forgotten to buy them.
  • Pack anything they will need into the book bag or backpack. There probably won't be a lot on the first day but taking it is a must because they will more than likely come back with about 10 tonne of forms and other super fun paperwork.
  • Take a photo. Your future self will thank you. They grow up so quickly and adopting this tradition will give you and your child something incredibly special to look back on. 
  • Book bag, PE Kit, Lunch Box? Don't forget the kid. 
  • Don't forget your other kids.
  • Take tissues with your because lets face it, you know you're going to cry. 

I am currently holding a giveaway over on Twitter with My Nametags giving you a chance to win a set of name tags worth over £11! 






*I was sent these name tags but all opinions are my own, as always. 

18 August 2017

10 BABY NAMES I LOVE BUT WON'T BE USING...MAYBE


Now I'm not completely crossing these baby names off forever and ever because I actually really loved the name Lily but said I wouldn't use it because it was so popular but then after watching an episode of Doctor Who I fell in love with it and that was that. Her middle name is Rose but that's after her Great Nan though, not Rose Tyler! Haha.

I chose Eloise because it was pretty unique but then it seemed like about 453 people called their girls Eloise. Haha! A lot of names I love are ridiculously popular but I feel like I can't use them because there would be about 5 other kids in the same class with that name and it'd get so confusing! Eloise is the only Eloise in her school and I'm keeping my fingers crossed that no one else with kids starting there in a few years called their daughter Lily. It's a super tiny school so there is hope I reckon. Maybe.

Anyway, narrowing this down to just 10 was bloody impossible because I am probably the most indecisive person on the planet so there are a few bonus ones in there.

Emilia

Basically Amelia with an E. I like Amelia too but I preferred how Emilia looked and it was the less popular choice which is a silly reason really because Lily is the second most popular name I think? I bloody loved this name for years and it was my favourite when I was pregnant with my angel and I just sort of associated it with that pregnancy if that makes sense? I don't know if that's weird...? We were going to call Lily, Emilia but it just didn't feel right. I still very much love it though.

Clara

Another Doctor Who derived name but Ben hates it so this one is definitely crossed off the list. I do really like it though, I don't know many people named Clara and I like quite unique names (says someone who called her daughter Lily).

Delilah

I really liked this but I can't get the song out of my head and I fear I would have it involuntarily playing in my mind every single time I told her to put her shoes on (and we all know that's a hell of a lot of times). I also love names to have lots of nick name possibilities and I just couldn't think of one for Delilah.

Flora

I love this and it's a name I've considered for both Eloise and Lily and it's still on my list but I think another flower name would be weird? I don't know if I'm reading too far into it but I feel like if I used another flower name then Eloise would be on the side lines kind of thing. That's probably just me reading into it far too much.

Grace

I love this name so much and I actually considered it for Lily but my Grandparents had a dog called Gracie so I thought it'd be a bit weird? Would that be weird?

Primrose

Another name I've always loved but Ben didn't like it and I think having a Lily Rose and a Primrose would be too many roses.

Amber Rain

We had pretty much decided on this for Lily but then we were told she was a porn star and that made it several shades of weird. We still really like Amber though.

James

I love this name for a boy but my sister went and named her cat James and after that I think it'd just be weird. Is it weird?

Tobias/Toby

This is my all time favourite boys name, stolen from The Labyrinth. I imagined my little boy wearing a stripy red sleep suit and everything. I still think I want to use this one to be honest.

Grayson

I love the idea of this being shortened to Gray and I just feel like it accommodates for all ages. I find with some names I think they sound really lovely when they're little but aren't so lovely when they're older which has put me off quite a few boys names.

Castiel

Stolen from Supernatural and we both actually love this name so much but I feel like this sounds really odd with Bayliss - too many s's. We both really love this name though.

Nemo

We both liked this, not after the fish but after Mr Nobody (it has Jared Leto in it and Jared Leto is basically the epitome of awesome) but we figured everyone would associate Nemo with the fish so we decided against it.

I filmed a Youtube video for this post too, so if you fancy watching me ramble about names head on over. I had a good hair day thanks to this bloody amazing hair mask from last months Pink Parcel, so didn't want to waste it haha!






Social Media:

17 August 2017

STEROID INJECTIONS IN PREGNANCY



Being told you need steroid injections during pregnancy is bound to terrify you ever so slightly, it certainly scared me. After being diagnosed with IUGR in my pregnancy with Lily I had weekly scans and bi weekly CTGs. I remember sitting in the consultants room at 31 weeks pregnant after having a particularly rubbish growth scan that found my fluid levels to be low and my baby so small she was off the charts. It was decided that the risk of my baby being born prematurely was high enough for me to need steroid injections to mature my baby's lungs and I was booked in to have them as soon as possible.

I was absolutely petrified. More so of the injections themselves at the time, I had read so many horror stories about how painful and absolutely awful they were which sent my anxiety even higher through the roof. To top it off, Ben had broken his hand and was unable to drive and Eloise had managed to pick up a stomach bug which made me even more anxious but hopefully after reading this, you won't be so anxious.


So, what happens?

Steroid injections are given over the course of two days. This is very important because in order for the injections to give your baby the best chance the full dosage needs to be administered 24 hours apart between the weeks 25-33 and are most effective two-seven days after administration. Depending on your circumstances this can be done while you are an inpatient or an outpatient. I was lucky enough to be able to have mine done as an outpatient.

If you are an outpatient then your injections are likely be administered in the antenatal assessment unit which you will more than likely already be familiar with. It will be injected in your thigh/bum area so the needle will look pretty big although not the size of your forearm like I read somewhere. I was bricking it and bracing myself for literal agony but I hardly felt it. It stung a little obviously but comprehend to what I was expecting a stinging nettle is more hardcore. I was asked to stay for 10 minutes which is pretty standard after any injection.

The next day I had the injection in the other leg and stood up this time, bent over the bed. Honestly, this made it hurt even less than the first time so I totally recommend standing up if you can. I didn't have to wait the 10 minutes this time because I was fine the day before apart from panicking.

I always worry a lot about side effects, my anxiety sky rockets at the thought of them and I always freak out about the worst case scenarios which for me is normally anaphylaxis or another serious allergic reaction but Betamethasone (which is the steroid they use to mature babies lungs) is actually sometimes used to treat severe allergic reactions which put my mind at ease a lot.


What side effects did I have?

BLOOD SUGAR CHANGES - I suffer with hypoglycemia so I was quite worried about my blood sugar levels because corticosteroids can make them harder to control. I did notice an increase in my blood sugar both fasting and after meals for a good few days; I normally sit at 4mmol fasting but I was sitting in the 5s for a bit after. So if high blood sugar is more your problem they you may have a week where your levels are harder to keep down. I also worried a bit about how my body would cope with the drop after the injection ha worn off and I did have a hypo so definitely keep a close eye on your levels for at least a week.


SLEEP DISTURBANCES - Could I sleep? Could I f*ck! I found myself awake at all hours for a good few days and I found it really difficult to drop off.

NIGHT SWEATS - I also experienced night sweats which kept me up too, I would wake up absolutely boiling hot, dripping with sweat. Bearing in mind I had them December time so it was freezing outside.

FACIAL FLUSHING - This one is a pretty common side effect, I had more hot flushes than someone going through the menopause. I looked like a bloody tomato.

INCREASED FOETAL MOVEMENT - This was another one I was told to expect, Lily did move rather a bit more for a few days which worried me a bit. If you notice a change that you're worrying about, even if they warned you about it, just go and get checked.

FEELING OVERLY HYPED UP - I actually felt bloody amazing after had the injections, I felt awake for the first time in ages and I was near enough buzzing. Kinda like I had drank a load of energy drinks on top of the entire contents of Willy Wonka's Chocolate Factory without the sugar crash. I felt fantastic in a slightly weird, not sure if I was totally in control of myself kind of way.

These side effects went by the time a week was up and Lily managed to stay put until she was full term and despite being the size of a doll, she was perfect. You can read her birth story and watch our birth vlog here.

My view in the AAU. I spent most of my pregnancy here in those bloody God awful chairs!




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15 August 2017

WHAT MY TODDLER ATE TUESDAY [15/08/2017]



BREAKFAST


// Sugar Waffle w/ Coconut Yogurt and Berries

Massive hit with everyone except Eloise who picked the fruit off and left the rest because for some reason she thought I had put it on a bloody potato waffle....
Coconut yogurt is my new favourite thing and Lily ate 80% of this so massive winner! The fruit and yogurt totally cancel out the sugar in the waffle right? Cool.



LUNCH


//Cheese Sandwiches
//Ella's Kitchen Cheese + Tomato Melty Hoops
//Fromage Frais
//Fruit Bowl Mango Flakes

Lily loves these little Melty Hoops and they have been a favourite for a while now. She also loves the mango flakes, they're 1 of your 5 a day so she tends to have them as a snack or a pudding quite a lot.


DINNER


// Sweet Potato & Spinach Patties 
// Homemade Garlic and Herb Wedges

These patties were a doddle to make and Lily loved them! Absolutely perfect for weaning too, definitely a recipe I'm going to keep for future babies too! She also had some garlic and herb wedges but I forgot to take a photo of them somehow. 

To make the patties all you need to do is:

  1.  Cook the sweet potatoes and spinach
  2. Mash the potatoes and mix with the spinach
  3. Take a spoonful or so of the mixture and make into a patty shape
  4. Fry the patties until they are beginning to go golden (I used a drop of coconut oil spray to fry mine in but if you have a good pan you may not need to)
  5. Leave them to cool slightly before serving and voila!

The recipe for the patties was kindly given to me by Little Olive Wonders over on Instagram! She posts beautiful photographs of her daughters meals and she has some absolutely brilliant ideas so head over for some top class weaning inspiration!

Find last weeks W.M.T.A.T here.




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14 August 2017

MEAT FREE MONDAY // SPINACH & FETA PUFF PASTRY TART



This Spinach and Feta Puff Pasty Tart has been a firm favourite in my family for years. I think my Grandma was the first to make it as part of a Christmas dinner and it quickly became a favourite and highly requested childhood family meal (which is also super easy so huge bonus there).








// Puff Pastry (I used to ready rolled boxes you find in supermarkets)
// Spinach (fresh or frozen work just as well)
// Feta Cheese
// Grated Cheddar or Gruyere Cheese










  1. Take the pastry out of the fridge and un roll onto a baking sheet
  2. Cook and spinach and turn the oven on to pre heat at 180 degrees
  3. Prick the pastry with a fork and drain the spinach.
  4. Spread the spinach evenly onto the pastry 
  5. Crumble the Feta on on top of the spinach and top with the grated cheese
  6. Cook for 15-20 minutes or until pastry is golden and cooked through

Kid friendly, even Eloise who is a fussy eater x1000, likes it and Lily had it as soon as she was weaning although I didn't give her too much of the feta as it's a little salty. I normally serve with boiled or roast potatoes or go all out and chuck on some stuffing, mash, roast parsnips, basically all the trimmings and then a shit load of gravy.




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