Thursday, 30 October 2014

Baby Groups. Hot or Not?


Baby swimming. Baby massage. Baby yoga. Baby signing. Stay and play. Baby and toddler groups. Messy play. Baby PEEP. Tums and mums. The list goes on and on and it seems, if you wanted to, you could go to a different baby group 3 times a day, 5 days a week!

I go to a least one group a day apart from on Fridays. And Mondays are swimming lessons so not quite the same as a baby group I guess. 

I don't know if I would go to so many if I hadn't moved to a new area before I had Isla. I needed the groups as an excuse to get out of the house and try and have some social interaction!

I've read a few other bloggers posts on baby groups and I feel like us new mummies have a bit of a love-hate relatiship with them. Some of us rate them and some of us hate them.

We've all had that horrible experience when you sit outside deciding whether to go in with that horrible nervous, sick feeling in your tummy. Then you take a deep breath, walk in and hope for the best!

I really enjoy all the groups I go at the moment to except one where, I'll be honest, I mainly go for the tea and biscuits and the good toy selection for Isla!

I'm very lucky that I've made some fab friends out of going to baby groups and so has Isla. 



I find that going to groups also gives Isla the chance to socialise and play with new things which helps with her sensory development.


It's all about finding people who you have more in common with than just your babies. People you can have a laugh with, share stories with and just generally get on with. Sometimes it's like speed dating, because you only have an hour or so, but without the dinner or wine!

Every now and again though, you will come across the following gems at baby groups: 

- the 'my baby is SO advanced compared to your baby' mum
- the 'I'm so worried about every sneeze, cough and poop my baby does and I need to tell you all about it' mum
- the 'I've done this all before and I'm bored of you talking' mum
- the 'attachment' mum - 'what do you mean you didn't breastfeed for more than a week?!?!'

And finally, in my case...
- the 'super over the top military' mum! 

Luckily I've only come across one of these military mums and I've only had to sit through one monologue where she relayed all of her husbands ships and deployments. I can barely remember Mr Knott's current job title in the navy so I wasn't the best audience for her! It was the longest 15 mins of my baby group career. Luckily my friend was sitting next to me so I quickly pretended Isla needed fed and turned around when the military mum wandered off...

So what are your verdicts? Do you enjoy baby groups or avoid them at all costs?

Wednesday, 29 October 2014

What I Wore Wednesday: Mummy OOTD #12

Sorry this is a bit late dolls! We've had a pretty hectic day. I went and met my friend for a bit at his new place then had a quick, late lunch and ran off to the airport to catch our flight to Southampton. I'm currently writing this sat on the plane! 


I've worn 2 outfits today! One normal one and one travelling one.

Unfortunately for you it's the travelling one I took photos of!




Top, H&M
Leggings, American Apparel
Boots, H&M
Scarf, Primark
Necklace, Orelia at Topshop

There is nothing worse than being uncomfortable when travelling. Especially when it's on a plane with a baby.

So I am all about the leggings and comfy tops. 

Also, when travelling, there is no point trying to have nice hair. Just scrape it back away from those grabby baby hands! The first time I flew with Isla I had my hair down and she got attached to my hair through security. A bit of a drama for both of us!

To be honest if I had my way I would travel in jogging bottoms and a big jumper but then I'd look like a right teen mum so...I don't!

Monday, 27 October 2014

The Most Important Qualities We Teach Our Children #HelloRBS*

When I first found out I was pregnant one of the first things, that really hit me, was that I was going to become fully responsible for another human being. It was slightly overwhelming knowing that I, along with the husband, would be integral in shaping how that little human being grew up and acted throughout their life.

It got me thinking about what important traits and qualities I would want to encourage in our daughter. There are so many external influences that you can't control when it comes to bringing up your children but there are also so many things you can do and teach at home that will (hopefully!!) help them realise what's important in life.

Loyalty and fairness are two qualities that I feel are huge indicators as to what kind of person you are. They make you a great friend, a good employee, a fab parent and a valued family member. I really do try to go out of my way to help my family and friends. I would put their needs equal to and above any of my own and hope that this would set an example to Isla. 

As Isla is only 6 months old at the moment, it'll be a while before we can sit down and talk to Isla about what it means to be loyal and fair but at the moment it's all about letting her interact with other babies and making sure she shares toys etc. A good starting point!



When it comes to being a loyal customer I can honestly say that there is nothing worse than being treated unfairly by a company. I won't name names but at one point I was with a certain phone company for over 10 years and didn't get one remote instance of recognition for customer loyalty. New customers were getting offered deals left, right and centre but us old customers were left behind getting more and more frustrated. Needless to say I am no longer with that company!

I've been a loyal customer of The Royal Bank of Scotland since my parents opened an account for me when I was 16 (ahem...11 years ago!). My Granddad was a bank manager with them back in the day as well so there has always been a link to my family. 



RBS is bucking the trend and are recognising existing loyal customers in their new Hello/Goodbye campaign. They are saying hello to simpler, clearer and fairer banking and waving goodbye to the enticing offers that are only offered to new customers, such as the 0% teaser rates. They are also saying goodbye to the sneaky practice of hiding the best deals online.

The campaign is all about making sure that all customers get a fair deal.

Check out their funny video all about fairness, the sofa's voice cracks me up!:



I'm not sure what I'd do if something popped out a sofa arm at me (unless it was a bottle of prosecco!) but it's a great video illustrating their point.

I really respect RBS for their new Hello/Goodbye campaign. It's far too easy for companies to come up with ridiculous offers to get new customers in the door but harder for them to come up with long lasting, sustainable policies that benefit all customers.

I do fully believe that what goes around comes around and if you are loyal and fair to people, people will be the same back to you.

For more information on the campaign take a look at this page on the RBS website.

What qualities do you feel are important to teach your children?

* I’m working with BritMums and RBS on this project and have been compensated. As always though, all opinions are my own though

Sunday, 26 October 2014

Weekly Round Up #3

Monday:



It was just a chilled out, potter about day on Monday which was lovely as we had a pretty busy weekend.

Tuesday:



I went and got my eyebrows done at Benefit Brow Bar whilst my mum looked after Isla. They were so good, I'll do a review very soon!

Friday, 24 October 2014

A Random Baby OOTD: Boots Mini Club Beauties



Leggings, Debenhams
Boot, Primark £3.50

I LOVE this top. I have to say I've never actually bought anything from Mini Club at Boots for Isla before. They have some really lovely stuff and a great brand called Bows and Arrows which this lovely jumper below is from...

I ended up buying her a few bits and pieces when I was in getting my new glasses. I just can't walk away from baby clothes!!


Definitely check out what they've got on offer. It was 3 for 2 when I went in. Couldn't resist really...

Thursday, 23 October 2014

Tommee Tippee Electric Steam Steriliser Review*


We are SO happy to be able to say that we are now official Babies R Us Babyologists!!

The first product that we have been sent to review is the fantastic Tommee Tippee Electric Steam Steriliser which is totally BPA free. It's RRP is £29.99 which is a great price for such a useful piece of equipment.



It really is a must have gadget for any parents who are formula, combination or expressed milk feeding. Basically, anyone who uses a bottle (although it is also very useful for sterilising other baby equipment too).



The box the steriliser comes in has loads of handy information on it and there is an instruction manual as well. Not that you'll need it, as it's so easy to use!

The slimline shape of the steriliser is great and means that it'll easily fit on kitchen surfaces without taking up too much room.

It comes with a handy set of tongs to stop those fingers getting burnt/to keep the bottle parts sterile and a mini bottle you can use as a measuring cup to fill the steriliser up with. It has a handy dotted line where you need to fill water up to for use in the steriliser. There was a 0-3 month soother in the box as well. The Tommee Tippee soothers are great.



The inner section consists of two levels of trays for putting your bottle parts on. You can comfortably fit in 6 Closer to Nature bottles. I also found it easy to fit in 4 of the Advanced Comfort bottes in at one time, even with all their fancy air vent gadgets that come with them.

It is super efficient and sterilises bottles within 5 minutes! Much quicker than using a sterilising solution. You literally just press one button, which will light up Orange and then go out when it's ready.

It is recommended to leave the bottles for a few minutes to let them cool down a little before getting them out. If the lid is kept on, the bottles will stay sterile for up to 24 hours which is a great amount of time. The lid itself is useful as it can be used as a sterile surface for making bottles up on if turned upside down. Are there no limits to this sterilisers usefulness?!

When it comes to cleaning the steriliser it is super easy due to the few simple parts that make up the product. They come apart very easily and can be washed quickly.

Pros:
- easy to use
- easy to clean
- fits in well in the kitchen
- great price

Cons:
- genuinely can't think of any!

Recommend?

I don't know what we would of done without this steriliser. It really does make the whole sterilising process, that some parents can be a bit anxious about, so easy. If you are debating which one to go for, make it this one. 

Next on our Tommee Tippee hit list...The Perfect Prep Machine. I really, really wish we had gotten one of these before Isla came along. I can keep wishing haha...

*We were sent the Tommee Tippee Electric Steam Steriliser by Babies-R-Us to review but all opinions are 100% our own

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

What I Wore Wednesday: Mummy OOTD #11


Off for a play date with Steph from Chalk Kids and Laura from Liparazzi today! I'm home in aberdeen and love catching up with these beauties when I'm back.

It is v chilly up here in the North East of Scotland so wrapping up well today.

Top, Selected Femme
Vest, Primark
Cardi, Primark
Jeans, Topshop
Boots, H&M
Necklace, Accessorize £6


Cosy!

Coat, Primark
Scarf, Primark

Lots of Primark goodies today! Popped in to get some bits I could just leave here and use whenever I'm back to save travelling up with them, such as a coat and some other warm pieces.