Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Granddad share the animal feed!

Last week I visited Hackwood Farm with my parents and Baba. It's a cute little farm in Derbyshire with tea rooms, a butchery, deli, shop, plant stall and children's farm. I love supporting local businesses and this farm is just magical.

We started our afternoon with tea and cakes from the tea room (it would be rude not too!). Baba sat like an angel in her high chair munching on sandwiches with the promise that after she had finished she could go and feed the goats.  After we were all fully fed and watered we wandered into the small shop and bought a little bag of animal feed. 

The amazing thing is that the farm at Hackwood is absolutely free and you can wander round the little pens at your leisure.  Baba loves feeding the animals and as usual Granddad  got over excited and wandered off with the feed bag.  He acted like he had never been to a farm before and forgot we had actually taken Baba.  Does anyone else's dad do this? Behave like a small child when they are in the company of one? So funny. Anyway, after being reprimanded he then stood with Baba to feed the chickens, goats and pigs and everyone was happy. 

The sun shone and I got some gorgeous photos of things we saw. I think as I've started this blog I've really started looking and appreciating what is actually around me a bit more, and that can only be a good thing!

My parents bought this gorgeous plant for a few pounds. It reminded me of feathers. So, so pretty.

If you are ever in the area drop by this farm and you won't be disappointed.  Their website is here.  

"And at the end of the day, 
your feet should be dirty, 
your hair messy 
and your eyes sparkling".

Thank you for reading.

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

Monday, 28 July 2014

Dinner with a Gremlin

Picture the scene.  You are eating at a nice restaurant with your partner and little one. Conversation flows easily, your little one giggles at Daddy making funny faces.  You each have a glass of wine as your little one sips on his or her water.  The waiter comments on what a delightful child you have and what wonderful parents you must be.  You enjoy the rest of your meal for the next hour, leisurely eating, chatting and relaxing. 

This happened to me last month.  Oh no.  Wait.  This didn't happen to me last month at all.  I dreamt it.  This is what actually happened.  A scene from Gremlins erupted at the restaurant. And no, Baba was not cute Gizmo.  Baba was the result of  when water had been spilt onto Gizmo.  No matter what I did, what I tried, nothing would get her to calm down and eat her food.  She could not be contained and screamed like I was murdering her when I tried to sit her in the high chair.   We left shortly after.  And I was left feeling like the worst mum in the world for not even being able to take my daughter for a meal out.  

Fast forward to yesterday and the three of us had a lovely lunch out.  Ok, the waiter didn't tell me how fabulous we were doing, but it was so nice.  There was no tantrums, no screaming and not a Gremlin in sight.  And this is the thing, eating out with a toddler is kinda like Russian Roulette.  You might have a wonderful time, you might wish you had stayed in bed that day and never left the house. Sometimes, toddlers don't want to sit down and be still, not even if there is ice-cream on offer.  But, I think you can help stack the odds in your favor and here's my top seven tips on eating out with your little one. 
Disclaimer: this list does not guarantee protection from Gremlins. 

1) Get a bag of tricks
This is the most important thing.  Never ever ever go for food without having something to occupy your little one.  They need stuff and plenty of it.  I tend to take crayons, colouring in sheets and stickers.  The trick is to include items that your little one doesn't play with all the time, so the objects are new and exciting.  In code red situations, the iphone makes an appearance and I feel like a bad mum as Baba scrolls happily through a million photographs of herself.  

2) Take some snacks.  You may be patient enough to wait whilst you are seated, the waiter brings your drinks, you order your food, the chef returns from his lunch break to prepare your food, but your little one is not. I take bread-sticks, fruit, little boxes of raisins...anything to keep the hunger Gremlin at bay. 

3) A Place-mat.  I found these in the clearance section of my local Boots and they are amazing!!! You stick them to the table and then you have a nice clean surface for your little one to eat off.  My daughter sees plates as completely unnecessary when she has the expanse of a whole table before her.  At least this way her mess and food look kind of contained.  

4) The bib over-all.  
My daughter is two and still manages to cover her entire being in whatever she is eating. These bibs are amazing, and when you leave the table your little one still looks (relatively) clean.  They actually have quite a good selection of these in £1 shops.  (As modelled by Baba). 

5) Hand and face wipes.  You didn't need me to tell you this did you? But since I have potty trained Baba, I keep forgetting to take wipes with me.  I picked some hand and face wipes up in Wilkinsons and the packet is a bit smaller than a pack of baby wipes, but just as effective. 

6) Don't worry. Everyone has bad days.  So you little one has lobbed their pasta at the posh couple next to you.  That's ok.  Take a deep breath, ask the waiter to liquidise your food so you can drink it and then leave.  Tomorrow is another day and you never have to return to that restaurant again! 

7) Never, ever put water on their backs.  Just in case. 

Thank you so much for reading.  Have you got any funny stories of eating out with your little ones? Or have you got any tips I have not mentioned? Please leave your comments below!

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Thank you!


Friday, 25 July 2014

(The ultimate nude lip and dancing with a hanger) Fashion Friday

Something very peculiar has happened to me since I have started blogging.  I haven't really bought any new bloody clothes.  Dum dum duuuuh. How on Earth this has happened to me I do not know.  It is not through lack of wanting that is for sure.  I am reading alot of blogs at the moment and my wish list is as long as both my arms.  I think it is more the case that I just haven't had the chance to pop into town.  Pre-Baba, well, Pre-Baba I would be at work all day, so I would grasp any opportunity to shop with both hands at whatever chance I got. However, with my darling Baba it is a little like planning a military operation if I want to go clothes shopping.  And most of the time I think she would rather be playing than watch me try on 10 different outfits in Topshop.  So I admit to you all, I feel like a fashion blogger failure.  Until I get those contracts to get free clothes sent to me weekly, we are just going to have to get by on my musings, wish lists, sporadic buying and reflections.  I really hope that will be enough or I am going to have to rename my Fashion Friday posts into Unfashionably No Fashion Fridays for fear of misleading advertising. 

Today I would like to share something that is not very fashionable at all.   Drum roll please. Yep that's right.  For your reading pleasure only, I have rummaged in dusty photo albums and from the depths I have found this little beauty.

Good God.  I know it is pretty horrific.  I hope no-ones children have walked in and started crying at this sight.  Let me talk you through my 'look'.  Starting with the makeup.  I mean we have to start there really don't we. This was at at time when nude lips were very in.  I am not talking your lovely nude shades you get today.  Oh no no no.  I am talking the real nude lip, the absolute nude nude, basically, when me and my friends used to apply concealer on our lips.  Yup, we even used to take it out in our handbags!!!!!!!!! Enough said. 

Evidently green eyeshadow was also on trend. As was a heavily tanned face and very rosey cheeks.  Nice.   

My outfit, I can remember thinking was actually very on trend at the time.  The short black skirt was short but not too short that my parents wouldn't let me out of the house.  The top I think I bought for about a fiver from the sale at Topshop, and it tied around the neck then had quite a low back.  You can buy the top online here...only joking!!!!!!!!

Ok.  So if we have all gotten over the shock and horror of this spangly creation, oh you haven't, well take another minute and then I will talk you through some valuable life lessons that I think we can learn here. 

Number 1. Never, never, never, never wear something that is meant to disguise dark circles on your lips. Ever.  

Number 2. Just because they sell it in Topshop, it does not mean that it is amazing.  Also, sometimes, just sometimes, things are reduced to £5 because no other bugger will buy them.

Number 3.  If you want to write a fashion blog, get something to write about, or face the consequences. Scaring your readers with old photos of yourself prancing around with a hanger may just have to happen.

You don't have to thank me for these little gems of advice guys, they are free to you, you're welcome :-)

Thank you so much for reading.  
And if you haven't already subscribed....please do that....NOW!!!
Wishing you all an amazing weekend in the English sunshine. 


Wednesday, 23 July 2014

The Legendary Eye Flick

For today's Whatever Wednesday I thought I would share with you my go-to make up look at the minute...the Alexa Chung Cat Eye Flick.  I used to wear this look ALL the time (I think mainly because I was too lazy to apply any eyeshadow).  I kinda ditched my eyeliner in recent months, favouring various eyeshadow palettes, but then an allergic reaction to some makeup has stopped me in my tracks and I am now favouring the simplicity and none allergic reaction of this look! 

Before we get started I have a few disclaimers to make.  Firstly, you have two options.  If you would like to see how the actual Alexa Chung does her eyeliner you can click here to be redirected to an amazing YouTube video by Lisa Eldridge which I recently found.  However, if you would like to see how a mum does the look in her back garden whilst multi-tasking and chasing her toddler round the garden all the while with the risk of being drenched from the water table then please please read on.  Also, it is alot harder than you think to take a mere picture of your eye.  I looked on my phone and I had taken over 90 pictures.  Now you would think I would have got it after the first 40, but apparently not.  I hope these pictures are ok, and some are in black and white to make the eyeliner more visible. 

So first thing is first, your chosen eye liner is key.  Have one that is too thick and you can kiss your cat flick goodbye unless you have got a hell of alot of time and a draw full of cotton buds. I got the Eyeko Skinny Eyeliner in Black free with a Glamour magazine last month (love a magazine freebie!!) and I have found the point on the eyeliner is really thin and this lets you get the flick very fine indeed.

Step one is to create the outer flick.  I never used to do this first, but it is so much easier to start from the outside and work your way in.  So you want to create a curved line which reflects your under-lash line if it was to continue up to your eyebrow.  So kinda like a semi-circle.  Do not worry if you think the flick is too big.  It won't be.  I find it tends to not look as big when you have your mascara on. 

Once you have done this, you then need to start filling in the flick towards the centre of your eye.  Keep doing a bit at a time to create the line.

Once this is complete you then need to continue the line along to your top inner corner.  I like to make this line thinner and thinner rather than have the same width across all of my eye.

Then ta-dah! An Alexa worthy eye flick (hopefully).  Once you get the hang of this look it is so so easy to do.  And perfect for those days when you haven't got the time to be applying and blending eyeshadows.  

Hope you all are having a lovely Wednesday and please let me know how you get on with this look.  Are you a fan? Have you any more tips or tricks to share?

As always thank you so much for reading


Monday, 21 July 2014

Google Parenting

Late one night my fingers quickly typed in the search box.  It was nearly midnight and I should be asleep, but I needed an answer.  Too ashamed to let my husband see what I was typing,  I constantly glanced over my shoulder to check he couldn't see.  I entered the text into the search box.  'Is it normal to sometimes lose your temper with your toddler?'.  The guilt lay heavy on my mind as I typed the words.  Suddenly, millions of search results flashed up.  Oh. Right. Oh. Ok. So it appears every woman and their dog has lost their temper and shouted a bit with their toddler.  I wasn't a monster.  I didn't need to be sent to prison. Thank god for that. 

Let me introduce the third parent in our family.  Google.  The aforementioned little Google search had been conducted because I was very tired (I know, no excuse) and I had told Baba to be quiet for mummy.  She then decided to take the coal pieces from the fireplace and lob them at the dog.  I shouted and stormed out of the room.  Immediately I felt like the worst parent in the entire universe for raising my voice.  That is until Google reassured me that most parents lose their temper sometimes.  My name is Laura and I have a Google Addiction. 

Google may not be perfect, but I do not care that the results and answers I receive maybe be incorrect, false or just darn right lies.  I also do not care if the other parents typing answers maybe be classed as criminally insane.  Baba once had swallowed some Blu-tac.  Within the hour I had Googled it and ascertained that a woman in Oklahoma had an addiction to eating Blu-tac, and another mum on a forum was worried her child had ate a sock. Ahhhhh.  I felt better already.  And just so you know, the Blu-tac came out the other end pretty much identical to how it had gone in the next day.  

Most of the time when I Google, I already know the answer.  I just need to see it in black and white in front of my eyes to confirm it for me.  For example, when I Googled does my daughter love my mum more than she loves me, I already knew the answer.  Whilst sometimes it might appear that way, of course she doesn't. And I think that there is what my Googling reflects.  It reflects what I am thinking about or feeling anxious about at that time. And for me personally, my Google buddy just reassures me and tells me its going to be OK. Oh yes, and it tells me my daughter loves me.  

Don't get me wrong, I know there can be alot of dangers with Googling, and I know that if a child needs medical attention for example, you shouldn't be typing your query to Google.  If you are Googling things like, is my child choking, or should I ring for an ambulance, then you should definitely not be loading up your PC and you and your Googling addiction need severe help. 

Other beauties I have Googled include the amount of sleep Baba needs (I mean, surely the girl just sleeps when she is tired), is it normal to feel guilty all the time as a mum (erm, yup, obviously).  And I even Googled can you love your child too much.  I don't know what I was thinking that day.  I mean, what was I expecting to find, a medical journal saying, yes you love your child too much Laura, you need to reign it in a bit and love your daughter less?!?

So there it is.  My addiction to Googling is out there for the world to see.  I am a Googley parent.  But underneath all this Googling is just that parental desire to know we are not alone, and that yup, its ok, and yup, the rest of the worlds population has felt how you are feeling, or has felt guilt, felt sad, felt bewildered by the same things.  So I have a feeling Google will be sticking with me for a while longer yet.  I am not ready to address my addiction.  I will continue trying to be the best mum I can, and along the way picking up some fascinating stories of Blu-tac addicted women. 

Do you like to Google about your little one? Or maybe those really important questions just to get Google's opinion?  I would love to know, so please leave a comment below!  
Also, are you following my blog? No? Then please please please sign up with any of the methods in the sidebar >>> so you don't miss any of my new blogs.  You would really make my day :-) Ok, begging over! Thank you so much for reading!


Friday, 18 July 2014

7 Days In Fashion

I had been pondering what I was going to post today and then it suddenly hit me.  I hadn't bought anything recently that I could blog about...duh duh duuuuuuh.  What on earth should a very new wannabe blogger do?!?  My first obvious instinct, in order to remain with the cool bloggers, was to pop into town and purchase something.  Then I got a hold of myself and got a bloody grip.  This would be wrong on so many levels, the very first being my bank balance. It also wasn't being very true to myself or the honesty of my blog. which is about my actual life and fashion I wear.  

Fashion has not completely passed me by this week, oh, no, no.  I mean I had to get dressed and on certain days I actually thought about what I was throwing on! So, instead of my usual OOTD poses and shiny new clothes, here's the clothes that actually already live in my wardrobe, and what I wore and got up to in the last seven days.  

I am not going to lie.  We are currently laying laminate flooring to the upstairs bedrooms and for the most part of the morning I kept my pjs on as I glossed a door (yuk, I hate glossing with a passion).  We did take Pablo for a walk out in the afternoon and this is what I threw on. 
Top: Zara (recent)
Shorts: Zara (old)

More decorating and this is what I wore to do it in! Please excuse the complete chaos in the background of this photo.  This wardrobe mirror is the ONLY full length mirror I have.  I know, I know, I have no right to call myself a fashion blogger!
Top: Topshop (I wouldn't even say old, very ancient)
Jeans: Topshop (old)

Mondays are always a bit hectic.  Me and Baba have messy play in the morning and then a stay and play in the afternoon.  I allowed myself to actually wear white to these groups as this top not only washes really well but I am getting pretty good at dodging paint splashes!
Top: Oasis (last Summer)
Jeans: Topshop (Old but they are the Leigh style)

Tuesday was a running errands kind of day.  You know the drill, we had run out of milk, I lost Baba in how big the pile of ironing had got, walking the dog who also got misplaced in the ironing pile, more running around the house brandishing a potty.  
Top: H&M (recent)
Jeans: Marks and Spencer (last Summer)

Wednesdays are Baba's swimming lessons.  I literally just throw anything on that is easy to wear and scrape my hair back on these days.  There ain't no fashion police at the swimming pool!!!  This dress is so comfortable to wear and quick to change in and out of. 
Dress: Primark (recent)

Wednesday Evening
I went out in the evening with some of my most lovely friends.  We went to a local pub that serves amazing and delicious food.  Was so good to chat and catch up.  I teamed my tribal print dress with just some flat sandals as I felt heels were a bit to dressey for the venue. 
Dress: Zara (sale - recent)
Shoes: Dune (old)

My hair maybe wavy from styling it the night before, but that is the extent of my effort here.  Me and Baba were off to the supermarket, and I really do not care what I look like! I mean, I do brush my teeth and wash my face, but I really can't be bothered with putting on makeup.  I also think its good to try and have days in the week when you give your skin a bit of a rest from it, well, that's my excuse and I'm sticking to it!!! 
Dress: Topshop (recent)

So there you have it.  My last seven days in fashion.  Hope you enjoyed! Would love to hear your thoughts on going makeup that something you do, or I am just being lazy and scaring the locals?! Please pop your thoughts in the comments below!

Thank you so much for reading and wishing you a fantastic weekend! Woop woop! 


Wednesday, 16 July 2014

Polka Dot Dots

So after my recent adventures misadventures in nail art, you would think that this is an area that I would stay the hell away from on my blog.  Ermmmmm nope. Here I am again with my newest nail creation :-) I think this one has gone a little better than my previous attempts which you can read about here and here if you fancy having a giggle.

I don't know how this inspiration came to me.  I have always been a fan of spots and thought I would give them a go on my nails (I mean why not?!).  How to do the spots was something I had been pondering all week.  During my daily routine, I was constantly thinking how I could achieve a spot effect.  I know you can buy kits, but I wanted to be a bit DIY here, plus I didn't want to buy a kit if I didn't end up liking the result.  Possible spot tools included the end of a cotton bud, cutting up a sponge, a potato (don't ask...I am quite imaginative), a pencil, toothbrush, the list goes on...I was even eyeing my dogs tail up to see if it could paint a perfect circle. Luckily for everyone involved and for my dog, my auntie ended up giving me a small brush to do nail art with, and on the other end of it was a small metal bulb.  The perfect spot tool!!!  This tool is from Avon, which you can buy here, but I reckon if you have a rummage in your sewing box, the end of a needle or something similar would do the trick too. You just need something that is going to create that small spot shape. 

Step one was first painting my nails with two coats of my current favourite shade, Rimmel 60 seconds polish in 503, Mind the Gap Victoria. 

After they had fully dried, I then commenced on the spots.  I applied a tiny amount of Natural Collection's Nail Tip Whitener to my tool and I dotted away.  Now to be completely honest, some nails look alot better than others, and some you need to squint at to think they look good, but I am a complete novice, with a bit of practice I think my spots could be better. Overall, I think the effect is quite pretty and my nails look very cute!!

I think most people could create this look, and I prefer these spots to my World Cup Stripes I sported (!!!) the other week.  What do you think? Have you tried this look before? Do you like the spotted nails or think it should be reserved for ladybirds only? Comments below please!!! 

Thank you for reading!

Monday, 14 July 2014

Two year old Goblins

On the stroke of midnight the night before a child's second birthday, a small pixie like creature creeps into the child's bedroom.  The pixie sprinkles dust on the child's head, and the once angelic child is turned into a little goblin with a very bad temper, sharp teeth and the strength of seven oxen in their arms and legs for hitting and kicking.  Their vocal cords are also enlarged so that they can scream louder for longer and also possibly the ability to breathe fire when circumstances call for it. 

OK, OK, so that might be slightly untrue.

OK, OK, its all a lie.  But I do sometimes wonder....!!!

The terrible two's title is a little misleading and pretty much gives two year old's a bad name. The stage can start anywhere from 18 months onwards really and I think its a time of when these little people get more confident, start to be able to know what they actually want and also start to test their boundaries and see what behaviour is acceptable and unacceptable.  But lets all be honest, if you wanted the in's and out's of child development and theories you would Google it rather than ask me.  Lets skip to the good stuff of my recent experiences. 

So it can be tough.  It's not tough like it was in the early days, when you are surviving on 30 seconds of sleep and you havent had time to brush your teeth for a few days, but its still tough.  Please, please, please, don't let any mum fool you into thinking that their 'angel' couldn't possibly have a tantrum....girl they are LYING!!!!  I have recently surveyed mums I know, and I have not only found that all children seem to go through this stage, but mums are so so relieved to find that their child isn't the only one at this stage.  

So the tantrums...

We have had two screaming sessions at the breakfast table which have been quite dramatic. I have absolutely no idea why they even started, but they were pretty good Oscar winning performances (my girl can sure act).  Baba screamed and kicked and thrashed about for a good 10 minutes whilst in her high chair. When she started doing this I did try to ask her what was wrong, but it soon became pretty obvious that she just needed a scream, and I let her! I said calmly, 'when you stop crying we can fix your breakfast up', and then I just pottered about the kitchen making my breakfast and a cup of tea.  If you had walked into our kitchen at that moment, you would have thought my daughter was auditioning for a role in the exorcist. However, after her 10 minute scream, she settled down after realising that it wasn't getting a reaction and she was hungry.  

We had a similar episode in Sainsburys a few weeks back.  I made the basic error of shopping when Baba actually needed a snack and a nap, I don't know what the hell I was thinking. Cue Baba actually rolling down an aisle whilst intrigued shoppers slowed down wondering if my daughter was part of a flash mob and people were going to start dancing around her to the sound of Fame.

And that's the thing with this stage, sometimes I can completely see why she is having a major tantrum and I think to myself, yup Baba, I can completely see why you are doing that. In those instances, I try and rectify the situation, i.e, quickly finish the shopping so she can nap.  Or I try to preempt things I know might upset her.  So if she is playing, I won't just say to her 'come on we have to go out', I will say 'finish playing and in 5 minutes we are going out.  You an bring one toy with you if you like'.  This doesn't always work, but it does sometimes.  

And then there are times when I know she is doing it for a reaction or to get her own way, and then I just ignore her. And whilst the tantrum might seem to go on for longer than one of the Lord of The Rings films, in reality she quickly loses puff.  Please don't read this and think I am always so calm.  Sometimes when I am tired, I want to roll around the floor with her. 

But wait, your two year old also does the most amazing things.  Baba will now ask me for a cuddle, give me a kiss and pull me by the hand to show me something.  She tells me what she is thinking and I hear her telling her little dolls phrases I say, such as ' don't run into the road. Very very dangerous'.  When we have the very very very bad days I can appreciate that this is just a stage and every day is going to be different.  Baba has good days and bad just like me I guess.  And when I see her curiosity and confidence growing I know its all worth it. 

So I am not sure when these terrible twos go away.  I am guessing that at the stroke of midnight the pixie reappears before a child's third birthday to return the goblin to an angel again?  I don't know, but hang on in there.  All we can do as parents is to do our best, and try and guide, teach and love our little ones.  Either that or do a deal with that magical pixie!!! 

I would love to hear your thoughts on the terrible two's...any tips or experiences you would like to share? 
Have a lovely day and thanks so much for reading!


Friday, 11 July 2014

Jazzy Pant Friday

Hi! And a very happy Friday to you! 
Today I thought I would share with you the newest addition to my wardrobe and these guys are jazzy to say the least! Introducing my jazziest pants ever! Woop woop!

I had been searching the high street for some patterned trousers since last Summer and could never seem to find any that I actually liked once I tried them on.  A small miracle happened last week when I wandered into Vera Moda and found these little beauties!!!

I thought they were also a bargain at £15 too!  I have searched Vera Moda's website but I can't see the exact same pair.  I reckon if you went in store you could probably find them. They do have very similar styles herehere and here

I have to say this style of trouser is so so comfortable and perfect for a relaxed weekend look. I also wore these to my daughters second birthday party at a soft play and I went pretty fast down the slides!!!! 

I know they are not for everyone, and I did catch my husband smiling at them the other day and making a comment about street-fighter, but pah! I say.  I love my jazzy pants and they are here to stay!!!

Thank you so much for reading, and I would love to hear your thoughts and comments on this style of pants? Are there any in your wardrobe? 
Hope you all have an amazing weekend. 


P.S Please excuse the posing, I thought I may have improved with my blog poses, but after uploading these, I am thinking not!

Wednesday, 9 July 2014

A Present In The Plum Tree

Hello again!!  I was in two minds whether to publish this post about presents I received for my birthday.  I think mainly this was because it felt a little self indulgent, but I have to admit that I am soooo nosey that I always love reading other peoples blogs or watching their vlogs on the subject.  Instead of just showing you what I got, I thought I would come at it from the angle that you get to see a few of my favourite gifts, but it also serves as good ideas for if you have any friends birthdays that are coming up or even if you want to treat yourself! Also, I should just mention I was playing around as to where best to take photographs of the items and I came up with the ingenious (!) idea of balancing all items in our Plum Tree...I thought this gave it an 'Alice in Wonderland' theme as little presents appearing in a tree (wouldn't that be nice!)...but erm, see what you think!!!  So first up in the plum tree...

...the Urban Decay Naked wait...I can hear you all yelling what the hell!?!?! I know, I know, this palette was released back in 2010, but I completely missed the bandwagon for this product (clearly!).  I am now officially in love with this palette!  I have been playing around with the colours for both day and night and I have not a bad word to say about it. Love, love , love! Link here!

N.B. this wouldn't fit in the tree!
This box is actually a photo album holder and inside there are little books to store your photographs.  I love this as I love printing my photographs out and I think this is an unusual and space saving way to store them all! Similar here.

This little lovebird photo frame is so so cute and just goes with my bedroom decor.  I just need to think about what photos I want to put inside now! (I can't find this online, but you will probably find in store at Next).  Similar here.

Next up is this candle from Laura Ashley which smells amazing!! I am actually a little obsessed with eating figs at the moment, so this fig tree and cassis candle has come into my life at the right time! Link here and its currently on sale too!

And finally is this necklace from Oasis.  This is just gorgeous.  It has a nude strap to it which means it is so versatile, and just so so pretty!!!  This is such a good gift to buy someone if you are not sure what style or colour jewellery to get them.  I know I am going to wear this necklace so much! Its available here.

So there you have it.  A whistle top tour of my plum tree and a few of my favourite gifts.  I hope you enjoyed this post and hope it has given you some inspiration! Have you bought any gifts recently or do you need some help buying for someone... I would love to hear from you so please comment below!

Thanks for reading. 

Monday, 7 July 2014

Potty To Go...

Hi everyone and welcome to another Mummy Monday on my blog.  This week I thought I would share with you the equipment I found really useful (and still do), whilst potty training my daughter.  Now, strictly speaking you don't really need all of this should just need your child and a toilet...BUT...if there is stuff out there to make everyone's life easier then I am all for it!!!!

My first major debate whilst potty training was what I was going to do with Baba when we were out and about and she needed a wee.  I admit I am a bit OCD with cleanliness, and the thought of putting her on some toilets just didn't sit right with me (no pun intended).  I then thought about hovering her over the toilet, but thankfully I never actually tried this because I think we all know how that would have ended (badly and wee soaked for me!!).  My mum actually found this amazing contraption for me, and it is a lifesaver!!

It is the Potette Plus Fold Away Travel Potty and Trainer link here. Its a little seat that you put over any other toilet seat and it means not only that your child doesn't disappear down the huge hole that is the toilet, but that they are on a nice clean seat too.  

But wait, that is not all!! The seat can then be clicked into place and it becomes a little potty that you can use with bags on the go.  I was a little skeptical as to how much I would actually use this, but I have now lost count of the amount of times I have used it with Baba.  Being so little, toddlers cant really 'hold' themselves, and when she says she needs a wee. she pretty much needs one there and then!!! Obviously if we are near a toilet I can make a dash for it, but she needed to go in the car-park yesterday, so I just unfolded this, popped the liner on and she went in the foot-well of the car!  The liners have padding in the bottom to absorb and then you dispose of them as you would a nappy.  Genius!!

As demonstrated by ted. 
And its pretty sturdy so it holds her weight (I had read reviews of some travel potties collapsing).  Because its all fully foldable, it fits snugly into my change bag and its really light.

Another item I have found to be really useful is a small cushioned seat.  I picked this one up from the pound store and Baba loves it!!! I think its much more comfortable for her than our toilet seat and her little bum just sits on it better.  Plus it has owls on so she gets pretty excited to get it and sit on it!

So those are my two pieces of equipment that I would really recommend.  I also had a little think of what other things I have found useful and these are: 

-A hand stamper
This worked really well as her reward for going on the potty. 

-Flushable wet wipes
For the obvious reason, and it saves you having to bag up used nappy wipes. 

-Old towels
To mop up any accidents

-Anti-bacterial wipes
Same as above!!!

I really hope you have found this post useful and I would love to hear of any other things people have found useful or maybe any tips and tricks for the wonderful potty training stage? Please please share them in the comments below!

Thank you so much for reading!

Friday, 4 July 2014

Tribal Print

I wouldn't normally pick something off the rails which was so bright and jazzy...but when I was in Zara last week I felt compelled to try this on and see how it looked.  I was so pleased with how it actually looked on and I had that euphoria you feel when you have found a nice little bargain.  When I got home however, and I hung it in my wardrobe, it was so so bright next to my other clothes that I started to wonder if I had gone a tribal print too far and I debated returning it (and thinking where the hell did I put the receipt)!

But after slathering on some Dove Gradual Tan and make up, I actually felt so comfortable in this dress and I loved it!  I wore it to a yummy Tapas restaurant that me and four lovely friends went to last week.  The cut of this dress meant I could eat to my hearts content (which I did...churros and hot chocolate yes please!) and I still had plenty of room! The dress is quite short, but I think because it is such a nice cut around the neck and sleeves, you can get away with it, and you don't feel over exposed.  I paired it with my mandatory nude heels that I seem to wear whenever I go out, similar here. I reckon this dress would look just as good with flat sandals too. 

The dress was £25.99 in the sale at Zara and I have scoured the Zara website several times but I cannot find this dress! BUT....I did only buy it last week, so I reckon if you have a rummage in your local Zara pronto you might be able to find it!

On a side will not believe how many shots I took to get a decent photograph!!! I am still not a natural (thats an understatement)...I have about 20 shots of me with my foot in the air...I am really not sure what pose I was trying to strike but its awful.  To give you a giggle, here's one that made the 'awful' pose pile...

Note to self...pose with both feet on the floor unless you want to look like you are trying to mount an invisible horse!!!

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend! Thank you for reading!