Tag Archives: food

Making Memories

20 May

Hi folks,

I love the month of May. Spring is everywhere & everything looks so beautiful… the weather is on the turn to sunnier times & it’s also mine & the hubsters Birthday month.

We always try to do something nice for our birthdays as they’re only 4 days apart. But when you have little ones in tow… plans have to change & adapt. This year we had the most amazing little break in the Yorkshire Dales in a stunning Georgian Cottage.

So… first of all… let me tell you about this simply beautiful cottage. Green Cottage is an elegant Georgian Cottage set on the green of one of Yorkshire’s most picturesque villages. It’s an ideal base to explore the Dales in any season. And… it’s 100% Family-friendly… that includes doggies too. A dog bed & bowl can be provided if needed. Our Coco is such a little diva though & likes her own little comforts – so we took her fave bed & mini food & water bowl… most dog bowls are big enough for her to bathe in lol.

The space itself:

The house is fully detached and set over three floors. Don’t worry thoughif you have little ones, then baby gates can be provided. Seth is 3 & Ted is 6 month so we very much need baby gates on the stairsso this was fab for us. They were already installed too!

Lower Ground Floor

  • Kitchen diner (featuring an extendable table to seat up to 6 guests and fully equipped with Rangemaster cooker, dishwasher, fridge with freezer shelf and microwave along with plenty of good quality cooking and baking equipment, glasses, crockery etc). Honestly…the kitchen has EVERYTHING you could possibly need. Even down to the colourful plastic kids crockery from IKEA that we all know & love & can’t live without! We ate in both nights… did ‘snacky food & we had sparkles… obvs

  • Utility room (with washer-dryer, iron and ironing board and a drying space for muddy boots and outdoor gear)There’s great tray there to stand your dirty shoes in there’s a radiator right underneath the coat rail too – so if you’ve gotten a little damp – everything will dry off.

  • Bathroom (with spa whirlpool bath, and toasty underfloor heating). The bath is utterly divine! I had visions of having an uninterrupted bubble bath with a glass of sparkles… but of course that lasted all of 5 minutes until Seth came bounding in lol. But that’s Mama Life for you!

Ground Floor

  • Living room (sofas to comfortably seat 5, log burner, digital Smart TV with Freeview, BBC iPlayer etc as well as lots of books, maps and games) we took our amazon fire stick with us & connected it to the WiFi. So we were able to watch Disney Life, Netflix & Prime. Please note that the play pen in the living room is ours & not part of the cottage.

  • Snug / third bedroom (large day bed which can be made up into full size single bed, second TV, desk)

  • Shower room (walk in monsoon shower with extra large enclosure, heated towel rail) There is also a toilet. It’s fab as there is literally a toilet on each floor. Essential for toilet training! Seth is totally dry now, but we’re still only in our first month of toilet training… so a toilet on hand is utterly essential lol.

First floor

  • Master bedroom (king size bed with deep, comfortable mattress, large wardrobe and antique dressing table) oodles of spaceLoads of room for a travel cot. A travel cot can be provided too if you don’t want to take one.

  • Twin bedroom (two full size single beds with pocket sprung mattresses, chest of drawers and clothes rail) a waterproof mattress cover can be provided too! Perfect!Please note that the bed guard rail is ours & not part of the cottage.

  • WC with basin (‘Jack and Jill’ style access from both upstairs bedrooms, ideal for families, or can be set up as en-suite for either bedroom)

Outside

  • Enclosed garden to rear and side, paved and gravel with outside seating, and a charcoal BBQ
  • Bike store (lockable for up to 5 bikes, can also be used as a pram store)
  • Direct access to the village green – a large expanse of grass free for all to stroll, sit or play
  • Play area visible from back gate – swings, slide, football posts etc. We spent quite a lot of time in the little play area. Seth loves a park. There’s also plenty wide open space to run around or to picnic. But, if you take your fur babies… please ensure you scoop that poop! There’s nothing worse than dog poop making the place dirty!

As you can see from above & from my photos… everything is catered for.

The bedding was so comfy!!! Egyptian cotton bed linen on all beds, 13.5 tog thick duvets (hypoallergenic and feather / down) and plenty of soft and fluffy Egyptian cotton towels. As you can see… Ted had to try out the king size bed lol.

There’s a welcome pack with all the basics for your first couple of days (loo rolls, hand soap, washing up liquid, dishwasher tablets, bin bags, tea towels and kitchen cleaning supplies) as well as tea, coffee, milk, bread and a few local treats. This was soooo nice!!! It just means that you don’t have to pack a lot of shopping. And it also means that it’s all ready for you to get the kettle straight on when you arrive… coz let’s face it… we all need that first brew when we arrive somewhere! Especially when you’ve had to sing Baby Shark & Old McDonald Farm all the way there lol.

 

Also… when we arrived there was a lovely big box of toys left out for Seth to explore, as well as plenty children’s books. There were even a few laid out on his bed for him. That was such a lovely touch & Seth was super excited!

So as well as a travel cot, baby gates & toys… the owners can provide a highchair – which Ted thought was VERY comfy & there is also a baby monitor. Oh & I did mention the plastic IKEA crockery, but there’s also a MAM Baby Cup too. Just so many little things that have been added to make your break so much easier! This cottage is really like a home from home.

For our furbabies, there is a lovely fluffy blanket provided & the use of a hose pipe outside to wash down those dirty paws.

 

Okay… so you’ve heard all about the gorgeous cottage… but what did we do while we were there? We investigated Settle. What a stunning little town. Seth particularly enjoyed The House That Jack Built. He got some lovely new Melissa & Doug toys. There are so many gorgeous shops, tea rooms & places to eat, to investigate. There’s also the Watershed Mill. It is absolutely stunning… the scenery is simply breathtaking. We popped there for a little bite to eat over lunch time.

We spent a lot of time playing on the green outside of the cottage & in the little park. We were only there for 2 nights… next time we’ll be booking for a week.

The cottage has a lovely organised folder of leaflets & places to visit etc… so helpful for when you’re planning days out.

This beautiful cottage is simply worth every penny. If you book before August & quote: “IxxyPoco” you will be given an exclusive discount. You can book a year in advance. So use that code before it runs out. Simply head to Green Cottage on AirBnB & send a message to the owners quoting my blog.

Thanks as always for reading & I hope you’ve been inspired to book yourself a lovely break away ❤️

Love & Huggles,

Hayley xxx

Disclaimer: This is a collaborative posts – I have received gifting &/or compensation for featuring some of these items, but all opinions are my own.

Weaning Must-Have, Teething Troubles and School Styling

13 May

Hi folks,

Can you believe we’re at the weaning stage already with Ted!? It feels like only yesterday that he was born. And yet here we are… already at the foodie stage.

Weaning can be so stressful. Finding foods & textures that your little one will entertain. Then there’s the worry of finger foods… I get so anxious in case they choke!

Of course weaning always feels less daunting when you have plenty of Nuby products on standby.

Stackable Bowls with Lids

These bowls are fantastic! In the pack you will get 4 bowls with lids & 2 spoons. The bowls are microwave safe & also dishwasher safe when used on the top shelf. They’re great for feeding on the go, as you can pop the lid back on to save any mess getting in your bag. They’re also perfect for food storage too!

Catch All Bib

The bib in this pic of Ted was actually Seth’s! So it’s already seen us through 1 weaning journey. Proof that Nuby products do stand the test of time!

This bib wipes down easily & also catches any foodie falls! It fastens with Velcro. This bib may be 3yrs old… but it’s still fantastic!

Titan Grip & Sip Cup

This little sippy cup is fab for getting your little one used to a cup from using bottles. The handles are great for little hands to be able to hold onto. It’s also non spill & it comes with a little lid too for keeping it clean & hygienic on the go.

Ted’s really enjoying trying to hold his own drink at the moment & this cup is great for that.

Wacky Teether

Any parent will tell you that teething is so upsetting & traumatic. Poor Ted has 2 teeth poking through on his bottom gum. He’s been so upset with himself. Luckily though, he’s gotten some relief with his Wacky Teether. It’s a lovely size for little hands to be able to grab on to.

With all of the different textures, it’s perfect for massaging sore gums. The crinkly fabric & bright colours will also keep them entertained too.

Ted loves his Wacky Teether!

Trendz Mini Backpack with Reins

Trendz Water Bottle

Seth has recently started Pre-School… he absolutely adores it! His Trendz Backpack has come in so handy. To avoid all that awful traffic, we walk to school. But with having the buggy too for Ted, I feel like I need several arms to be able to hold Seth’s hand & push the buggy.

With Seth being a ‘big boy’ he doesn’t always want to hold hands, so it’s great being able to attach the reins on to his bag & then keeping it on my wrist. It’s just a little reassurance that he’s not going to wander too far or jump into a road.

Inside the backpack – there is plenty room for spare clothes… we all know what it’s like during toilet training. There’s also a zip compartment inside as well as a big pocket.

The water bottle is a great size for school too & also has a push button that releases the drinking spout. Great for keeping it clean & hygienic. Its non-spill too!

It’s easy to wash – it’s dishwasher safe… Hoorah! And… it’s shatterproof! Durability is a must have when you have a rather boisterous 3 year old!

I do love Nuby products they just seem to make everything a little easier lol.

Thanks so much as always for reading!

I hope you’ve found my review helpful!

Love & Huggles,

Hayley xxx

Disclaimer: This is a collaborative posts – I have received gifting &/or compensation for featuring some of these items, but all opinions are my own.

Any Excuse For a Party!

8 Aug

Hi folks,

You all know what family life is like here at Thorne Towers… hectic, busy, fun & full of giggles. You also know that we don’t need an excuse to celebrate & have a party.

Since Seth is becoming a big brother in October, we’ve been trying to get him to understand that we’re having a baby join our family. He’s only 2 year & 5 month old… sometimes I think he totally gets it & other times I think he’s still not quite sure.

So… what better way to get him excited? Have a little tea party! And what does every party need? Well, cake of course!

bakerdays are a fantastic company who make letterbox cakes… yes that’s right… a cake delivered through your letterbox! How fab is that!?

Yes you read that right… they can make you a stunning personalised cake to celebrate any occasion that comes in a lovely tin & fits through your letterbox. They also offer gluten free, wheat free & dairy free options!

Seth was sent a cake to celebrate the fact that he’s going to be a Big Brother. I can’t even begin to tell you just how stunning the photograph was. The detail & quality was so high. And Seth adored having a Ace with his face on… he’s such a poser.

Seth’s cake was a plain sponge – simply because that is his favourite. But you can choose other options. You also don’t have to choose a letterbox cake. They offer 4 different cakes sizes as well as cupcakes.

Now for the important bit… how did it taste?

As you can imagine… Seth takes his role as cake testing rather seriously. After snaffling his first piece… he hastily demanded another. I can therefore confirm that he did indeed think it was “Nommy Nommy” lol. That’s a direct quote right there. This 2 year old knows good cake when he tastes it.

Everyone agreed it was really lovely & super fresh. I have to admit that I was thinking “will it be fresh?”… but it really was! Plus it’s such a fantastic novelty having it delivered through your door. You could send this to any loved one for a special occasion & it would most certainly make them smile. You don’t even need an occasion really… just simply treat someone who needs a pick me up perhaps?

Thank you so much bakerdays for making a little boys day. What better way to become excited about being a big brother than with cake!

Thanks as always for reading!

Love & Huggles,

Hayley xxx

Nesting

18 Jul

Hi folks,

Wow… so today I hit the 25wk mark… I just cannot believe how quickly this pregnancy is flying by. With only 15wks left – I’ve gone into full on nesting mode.

The babies nursery is starting to take shape… when I say take shape… I mean it’s full of boxes & paint tins. But… we have everything for his nursery sorted at least. We just need to paint & build furniture. I’ve also got all of his bottles & steriliser etc… After a bit of a traumatic start to my Mammy Life when Seth was born… I’ve made the decision to exclusively formula feed. I have to reiterate that this is my own decision. Purely as for me & my family – this is the best decision for us. I am in no way against breastfeeding, it’s just something that isn’t for me. I tried my very best with Seth & my body was not playing ball & wasn’t producing what he needed. After a hospital stay & discussions with experts… formula was the way for us.

With Seth, we exclusively used MAM UK bottles, soothers & steriliser… so it was a no brainer to use this fantastic brand again. In fact, Seth still goes to bed every night with his favourite MAM UK glow in the dark soother or “Soo Soo” as he calls it. The great thing about the glow in the dark ones is that if he wakes up without it – he can find it in his little bed easily.

So… why do we choose MAM UK? Well firstly… the fact the bottles come completely apart is just brilliant for cleaning. The bottoms & tops completely unscrew unlike a lot of traditional fixed bottom bottles. So you can give them a really good soak before popping them in your steriliser. With Seth we only had the microwave steam steriliser. This time round we have got the Electric Steriliser & Bottle Warmer. I already love this product & I’ve not even used it yet lol. The microwave steriliser fits in my microwave fine, but when Seth was 9month old we went on holiday to Center Parcs & the steriliser wouldn’t fit in the microwave. Now luckily, all the MAM bottles are self sterilising, so we just sterilised them individually. But with the electric steriliser we can either use the microwave or use it with the warmer. Which is great since we will be going to Center Parcs in December when the baby is around 8wks old. So… what’s in the box:

1x Electric Steriliser

1x Express Warmer

2x 160ml Easy Start Anti Colic Bottle

2x Start 0-2M Soothers

1x Teat Tongs

(Only 1 electric base unit included and needed for Steriliser & Warmer)

6 functions in 1 device

1. Microwave sterilising

2. Electric sterilising

3. Express bottle warming

4. Gentle bottle warming

5. Defrost & food warming

6. Keep warm function

Key features:

• Compact design that saves on kitchen space

• Electric and microwave steam sterilising possible

• The MAM Steriliser & Bottle Warmer includes 2x Easy Start Anti colic bottles, 2x Start 0-2M Soothers a small pair of tongs to assemble the clean bottles

• Gentle or fast warming: perfect for breastmilk and formula

• Extremely fast warming of milk in just 2 minutes 30 seconds

• Extremely fast defrosting of milk in just 10 minutes and just one setting.

• Safety auto turn off feature

Such a fab buy!!! If you’re looking for a good baby shower gift… look no further! I love the gender neutral silver grey colour too. It’s so funny, coz we’re actually decorating his room with pale grey & white. So even his bottles will match lol.

We’ve still so much to sort out before our little bundle of joy arrives, but having all of his bottles, steriliser, etc… is something we can most definitely tick off our list!

Don’t forget that MAM UK run lots of promotions & announce new products via their social media pages! So… go give them a like & a follow!

Instagram

Facebook

Thanks for reading & I hope you’ve found this review useful & please look out for more reviews of these lovely products when Little T arrives.

Love & Huggles,

Hayley xxx

Growing Up So Fast

22 May

Hi folks,

Where does the time go? I feel like it was only last week I was announcing I was pregnant with Seth… & now he’s 2yrs old! When everyone told me the time would fly by once I had children, I didn’t quite believe it. I’m almost scared to blink in case I miss something.

Seth is growing & developing so fast. Every day he seems to be doing something new.

From day one with weaning Seth he’s always been included at mealtime. We always sit down altogether. At first he was in a high chair. But as he’s getting bigger – he doesn’t want the high chair… he wants to sit on a ‘big boy chair’ at the table. This is where the fantastic Nuby Travel Booster Seat has been such a game changer.

This fab seat straps to most dining chairs – we have high backed ones & it fits no problem. There is also a harness so you can clip your little one in safely. Seth loves it as it gives him that extra little bit of height to reach the dining table. He’s loved being able to have breakfast, dinner & tea like a big boy on a regular chair.

Seth literally has the BEST morning hair lol… I love his curls.

We’ve not just been using it at mealtimes though, it’s been great for ‘Arty Time’ too.

The booster seat is so super lightweight & really easy to fit to a seat. It has an adjustable 3 point harness & safety straps – giving you the peace of mind that your little one is safe & secure. The other really good thing is that the covering is waterproof & so easy to wipe clean – coz let’s face it… those little ones do tend to get a tad messy at times. The seat can then convert really easily into a bag with a shoulder strap. There’s also a mesh pocket ideal for storage… this can be used for anything you may need on the go such as spoons, bib etc…

We’re off on holiday next week & you’d better believe that we shall be taking this with us.

What can I say – this item is fab! I wished I’d known about it sooner. I will most definitely be using this again when baby number 2 arrives.

For more info on the product & for buying… head on over to the Nuby website. Don’t forget that it’s free delivery on all orders over £15. The travel booster seat is only £19.99… so there’s your free delivery right there!

Thanks so much as always for reading!

Love & Huggles,

Hayley xxx

Pregnant Life

29 Apr

Hi Folks,

April has been such a busy month. In fact it has been a wee while since my last blog post. But this month just seems to have zoomed by so fast!

We seem to have packed a LOT into just 30 days… Seth went to his first birthday party which was unicorn themed. His little face was amazing – he adored everything about it. The bouncy castle, the pink lighting, dancing on the stage… just everything!

We also had an amazing day out to The Yorkshire Wildlife Park for their Alice in Wonderland event. It was really cold & windy, but we just wrapped up warm. We even managed to have our picnic outside too.

This month has seen some amazingly warm sunny weather too. It was so nice to be able to get out into the garden. We enjoyed it while it lasted. We had homemade picnic platters & played in the ball pool. Sometimes it’s the simple things that make the best memories.

I was also admitted to hospital too. I just couldn’t believe it. Being pregnant whilst having a toddler is such a different experience to the last time I was pregnant. Everything is harder as I’m not my own priority anymore – Seth is. We don’t have family around us where we live, so I can’t just scoot off to Hospital. I need to make sure Seth has someone to look after him. So, my hubster stayed with Seth until my parents made the 2hr drive to us. It was kinda scary being in hospital on my own. I mean I’ve been in hospital on my own before, but the beginning part while you’re sat around on the ward waiting to have tests I’ve always had Graham with me to hold my hand. Don’t worry – baby is totally fine. We’ve named the baby ‘Little T’ until he or she arrives. I’ve got red degeneration of my fibroids. I suffered with this throughout my pregnancy with Seth. Even though I’m in pain – it’s reassuring to know exactly what it is. But I do just feel constantly exhausted at this stage. We got to see Little T for the first time last week. I’m coming up to 14wks… I just cannot believe how fast this pregnancy is going. I felt like I was pregnant with Seth for like a year or something lol.

I also got to meet my consultant this week as I’m being consultant led again being a high risk pregnancy. I was pleased to find out that it was the same consultant who actually delivered Seth. So that is just amazing as I’ll be having a planned c- section again so the same lady will be delivering Little T.

We’ve made the decision to stay Team Green during this pregnancy – we’re not finding out the Baby’s Gender. I’m actually quite excited to have a gorgeous surprise when Little T arrives. I’ve been pushed back one day, so Little T’s due date is 31st October. I’ve also made the decision to have my Fallopian tubes removed during my c-section. Purely because we definitely only want 2 children & because I’m generally quite poorly during pregnancy. We’ve been moving furniture around in our bedroom to make room for the SnüzPod. So that means I got to move my dressing table & make it all pretty in a new location. I do love an organised make up station… I’m so sad lol. I’ve been spending a lot of time on Pinterest looking at nursery decor ideas. We’ve gone for White, Pale Grey & Silver. I can’t wait to start decorating. Then when Little arrives I can buy either pink or blue bunting with his or her name on as a finishing touch. Eeeeeck… it’s just too exciting! We’ve already got the cotbed which is Obaby & from Precious Little Ones.

May is looking to be a VERY busy month too… it’s my birthday in May, it’s the hubsters birthday in May, we have 2 Bank Holidays & we have a holiday coming up too, to Haven. I’ve never been to a Haven site before. I’m super excited – it looks perfect for Seth. We normally holiday in Center Parcs… but wanted to see what Haven was like. We’ve got a Center Parcs holiday come up in August. Then, Christmas week we’ll be going again, but this time we’ll have our new addition with us. I’m so excited! I have some lovely reviews coming up all about the Traditional Toy Box Company & Nuby. I promise I’ll be blogging more this month… my sickness is starting to get better & I just need to get back to my organised routine.Thanks so much as always for reading! Love & Huggles,Hayley xxx

Resolutions, Health and Babies

8 Jan

Hi folks,

I just simply can’t believe that we’re already into 2018! Last year just went by so fast in a massive blur! I hope you’ve all had an amazing Christmas & New Year.

Our Christmas was simply amazing… lots of laughter, sparkles & food! Maybe a little too much food actually. I’ve gone back to basics today in a bid to lose 2 stone. I think coz my mind is the zone of healthy eating… I’m actually already feeling better. Mind over matter so they say. Healthy eating always makes me feel so much happier too.

In between Christmas & New Year, I had a few tests at Hospital. Luckily everything came back tip top 🙂 So I’ve literally skipped into 2018 with a clean bill of health. I’m hoping that maybe this could be the year that we add a new addition to our family. But I guess we’ll have to wait & see.

Until then though… we’ve added 2 new little darlings to our family… Tuna & Mayo 🙂 Seth’s new Goldfish.

Like most folk… I’ve started the new year with some new year resolutions. Now, I don’t like setting outrageous & unattainable resolutions… nor do I like the ‘New Year New Me’ saying… so here are my ‘realistic’ resolutions:

  1. Do more things for myself… what I mean by that is, that since Seth has been born I just don’t do anything as a treat just for me. I used to go out a lot & I used to have my nails done each month. All of that kinda faded away as I just put everything & everyone first. So, on Saturday I went to get my nails done all on my own. It was so lovely. I even made an appointment to have them done in 3wks time! Go me! I have to say that my separation anxiety has added to it too. Going out on my own just never feels right. But I think I’m slowly getting better with that.
  2. Be healthier. I’d love to lose 2 stone. I just really need to be the healthiest Mammy to Seth that I can be. I owe it to him to be the best version of myself that I possibly can.
  3. Be Positive. It’s no secret that I’m a positive thinker… and I plan on continuing that. Having a positive approach to life really does help to get you through the tough times.

I’m so excited to see what this year will bring. Last year we moved home & we didn’t anticipate that – but it was the best thing we ever did. I just love our home so much. Seth has more space to play. We’ve started to make plans for a little decorating. Nothing too in your face… just a nice freshen up with mostly neutral colours. I want to add a roller blind to the guest bedroom & new curtains. Then in the spare room, we want to re-paint & add a new curtain pole & curtains etc… Seth’s Room doesn’t need a spruce up since we did when we moved in. The same as our room… we did all the sprucing up & finishing touches as we moved in. We shall get there I’m sure.

My lovely frosty view this morning.

I’m hoping this year will also be the year that I pass my driving test. The first step will be to get my theory test booked in. I’ve started my manoeuvres… well… pulling up on the left & parallel parking. Eeeeck… I just can’t wait until I’ve actually passed.

I can’t believe that Seth turns two this year too. I just do not know where the time is going. Soon enough we’ll be putting the tree up for next Christmas lol.

Well I shall leave this post here as I’ve a mountain of laundry to do… fun times lol.

Thanks so much as always for reading!

Love & Huggles,

Hayley xxx