White Cotton Peonies

SS18 at The Lexicon…

Fashion / Feb 14, 2018 / 0 Comments

When I was invited to spend a Saturday morning at The Lexicon hearing all about Spring Summer trends for 2018, it took me the whole of 5 minutes to respond excitedly saying yes… Of course, those 5 minutes were just in the interests of playing it cool.

I love being a mum and everything that involves, but it’s fair to say that shopping for myself hasn’t happened for a long time and so knowing what’s on fleek (that’s what the cool kids say now, right?) doesn’t come naturally.

Now, for anyone living in the Berkshire area, you’ll know if I say “Bracknell” that it’s not somewhere you’d previously have chosen to spend your spare time. However, since the redevelopment, it’s unrecognisable! Completely pedestrianised and with plenty of undercover shelter, it’s a shopper’s best friend.

Some of the stores include Fenwicks (including MAC, Jo Malone, Creme de la Mer, Links of London, All Saints, Hugo Boss, Ralph Lauren, Barbour, Kurt Geiger, Dior, 7 For All Mankind, Bottega Veneta, Burberry and Chanel just to name a few), Topshop, H&M, Jack Wills, River Island, Pandora & Office amongst others. Not to mention all of the awesome restaurants… I’m a little bit in love.

Whilst enjoying brunch at Coffee Barker (they do the best smoothies!), we heard all about the forthcoming season’s trends. Here are the things to look out for:-

  • Pastel tones (think summer ice-creams!)
  • Denim…. tailored and dark
  • Primary colours. The brighter the better
  • Trench coats. Time to dig out your Burberry!
  • Plastic (I’m personally still not sold on this)
  • 1950s pencil skirts
  • Fringed hems
  • Shorts
  • Slip dresses
  • Evening sheer glamour (I’ll be giving this one a miss until I’m back in shape!)

After we finished brunch, I took a couple of hours to make the most of being baby-free, to browse the shops. Topshop as always was hitting so many of the trends with this pinafore dress:

I also loved this sheer bodysuit, which would look perfect with tailored jeans:

As soon as I stepped inside of Fenwicks, things got dangerous. I loved these primary colours from Hugo Boss:

Not to mention this gorgeous Bexley Mac from All Saints:

Tommy Hilfiger were nailing the pastels:

Whilst their denim department made even the pickiest of jean buyers pleased…

I decided to treat myself in H&M, combining denim with some super comfy ripped dungarees, a pastel girl power top and another broderie anglaise white top which is as sheer as I dare to go with a mum bod going on:

It was such a fun morning and I felt so self indulgent spending time to think about myself for once. If you’re planning to check out the Lexicon during half term, you can enjoy The Lexicon Express, a land train with four stops around the town. I’m definitely planning to take Bells, I know that she’ll love it. Donations will be going towards The Lexicon’s Charity of The Year, Bracknell Gymnastics Club.

Be sure to head to Princess Square where you’ll have the chance to ‘Beat the Clock’. Test your nerve by holding out as the potential prizes get better the longer you hold the button down, but if the klaxon sounds, you’re back to the beginning again. There’s loads of cool prizes including £250 Fenwick gift vouchers, free parking, Lexicon gift cards, discounts and meal vouchers!

Thanks so much to The Lexicon for giving me such a lovely Saturday. I’m so happy to have such cool new neighbours in town. The perfect day out!

M xox

 

Transitioning to a toddler bed…

InteriorsParenting / Feb 12, 2018 / 0 Comments

We had quite possibly the worst sleeping baby in the world. We’ve had bouts of good spells, don’t get me wrong, but as soon as Bells turned 1 we had a good four months of 4.30/5am wake ups and I struggle to believe that’s any type of regression.

I knew that something had to change. With another baby on the way, it was important that we addressed the issue rather than just living with it, as we probably would have done if we didn’t know we were going to have another sleep thief to contend with.

I took a look at our bedtime routine and quickly (I don’t know why I hadn’t thought of it before) discovered what I thought we’d been doing wrong. After her bath, we’d get her ready for bed before giving her a bottle of milk whilst enjoying cuddles with her on our bed. Within a couple of minutes, she’d fall asleep and of course, we’d enjoy the cuddles for a little longer before carrying her to her own bed.

No wonder the little monkey was confused when she woke in a completely different environment. Not to mention, she’d never learned to actually send herself to sleep.

We decided that it was time for a complete overhaul. Throw into the mix that I also didn’t want to buy a second cot 🤑 when Bells was already 18 months and we decided to change her bed and routine… it was time to make her love her room.

Just at that time, we were approached by Little Green Sheep to offer to send us their Twist Natural Cot Bed Mattress. To say the timing was perfect was an under-statement.

We decided to take the side off of Bells cot and to replace it with a bed protector to see how she got on before transitioning her to a toddler bed. It turns out she loves it and so we went ahead and ordered her “house bed” from Etsy, complete with her comfy new mattress.

Her room got emptied of it’s changing drawers, making room for a table and chairs which she loves to sit up to, as well as some of her toys – transforming the space into fun area rather than just somewhere she’s sent to sleep.

Within just a week of trying the new routine, she’d happily stop drinking her milk at the end of the two stories and roll over to send herself to sleep after a cheeky kiss goodnight. The 5am starts stopped almost immediately and now whilst she may wake and grumble for a little bit, left to her own devices, she’ll send herself back to sleep for a good 1/1.5hrs.

She loves being a grown up girl in her big bed and she looks so cosy when she’s all snuggled down. Having experienced the mattress first hand, I can confirm that it’s really comfortable! It’s also good to have the peace of mind in knowing that their mattresses create a pure and healthy sleep environment, away from toxins and chemicals.

Looking back, I didn’t give much thought to Bells mattress when we’d bought her cot… and yet we spent a small fortune on our bed as it’s a space you spend (hopefully!) so much time in. It seems only right, she gets the same treatment and complete with her Little Green Sheep mattress protector (which feels just like a sheet, no plastic rubbish here) and sheets, she’s now got a bed even most adults would be envious of.

I don’t want to jinx things by saying that we’ve cracked it, but it’s certainly heading in the right direction…. just in time for number two 😩🙄

Thanks so much to Little Green Sheep!

Have you struggled with sleep? How did you resolve it? Are you still struggling? I’d love to hear from you!

JoJo Maman Bébé | For those who like a simple life

Parenting / Jan 30, 2018 / 0 Comments

Things are very different with my second pregnancy than they were with my first – balancing full-time work and a toddler means that it’s barely registered that it’s only a matter of weeks until we become a family of four. That very thought BLOWS MY MIND.

Where the first time, I’d organised everything months in advance, things have very much been left until the last moment this time. As a result, I’ve become a lot more efficient, I guess every cloud and all that! Most of my shopping has been done online so that I can place that naughty order which Dickie doesn’t know about when I grab that 2 minute loo break to myself (yes, I take my phone with me, please don’t judge).

I’ve always been a fan of JoJo Maman Bébé having first discovered their Windsor store when I was pregnant with Bells. I love the cool products they stock (both their own brand and other obscure lesser known brands too) and the quality that you know that you’re getting. Most recently, it’s been a God send allowing me to sort maternity wear (I swear by their maternity underwear), toys/clothes for Bells and stuff for number 2’s nursery… and yes I know that we are going to have to find a name at some point, I don’t think the baby is going to appreciate being called number 2… but that’s another story.

When the team at JoJo recently got in touch to see if we’d be interested in receiving anything, I jumped at the chance to get browsing again. Safe to say, I ended up buying a lot more than I chose for them to kindly send. Amongst the selection though was Bells very first denim, a cute pair of dungarees. I’ve avoided putting her in denim until now as I don’t want to admit to myself that she’s turning into a proper human, and they seem, well, just so grown up. However, having seen her in them, it’s now my go-to outfit whenever we need some cute appeal going on.

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At 19 months, Bells is developing so quickly. Imaginative play seems to make up a huge part of her day and is something that I really want to encourage as I think it’s really good for her. Whilst she has a toy kitchen and other “typically girly” toys, she’s always been super keen to give Dickie a hand when it comes to DIY and so I decided to get her the Jojo Maman Helpful Handyman Toolkit. I don’t think that toys should be determined by gender… I know that as a little girl, my train set was my fave!

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I know that the guidelines say from 3 years and I would never leave her alone unsupervised with small parts (have I included enough disclaimers in there?), but she ABSOLUTELY LOVES IT. She goes around the house pointing out things that need fixing by attempting to do it herself with her toolkit, causing poor Dickie to have lots more added to his to-do list.

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As you can see, I’m not sure who was enjoying it more…. Bells or Dickie *rolly eye emoji*

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Lastly, I chose the meelight from meemoo which is for the arrival of our second human. It can be used either as a nightlight (it has a 30 minute timer option) or as an attachable light so that you can attach it to you hands-free for those early hour feeds… oh how I’m looking forward to those again. It’s got 3 different settings, allowing you to dim it and it’s a really lovely soft glow (such a soft glow that it’s impossible to photograph, but you’ll have to take my word for it). I’m actually really excited to try it out properly, I know that it’ll certainly be nicer than using the torch on my iPhone like last time!

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Now that I’ve finally got my act together… and it’s started to dawn that we’re running out of time, I’ve got a list of things that I want to buy including some Aden + Anais swaddles (by far the best swaddles I’ve ever bought.. they literally get softer with every wash), a Baby K’Tan Carrier because we know number 2 is going to be ickle again and I want to keep them close and a BabyBay Convertible Bedside Crib, because…. it’s just gorgeous!

I’m sure that if you have kids, JoJo Maman Bébé is well and truly on your radar but with so many gorgeous things coming in on such a regular basis, it’s well worth checking out again. Thanks once again to the team for ticking a few things off of my list!

M xox

10 Ridiculous reasons my toddler had a tantrum this week

Parenting / Dec 19, 2017 /

I remember it vividly. It was about 2 years ago… I was pregnant with Bells and I was standing in the queue at Boots (no doubt for yet more pregnancy vitamins). The lady behind me was having a battle with her toddler and where the pre-pregnant me would have probably tutted and turned away, the new broody me just smiled and said “terrible 2s?”…. “how did you guess?” she responded.

You see, people expect 2 year olds to have tantrums… but nobody warned me that the onset of this is WAY before 2 years of age. Case in point? Bells.

I find myself constantly battling with my own emotions, from frustration, to sympathy and to many times despair. I want to teach her that tantrums won’t get her anywhere and yet I know that she simply doesn’t understand her own emotions at this point. HOWEVER, this does not stop her from sometimes being a bit of a dick. The reasons for this week’s tantrums include:

  1. Her offering me her dummy and me taking it
  2. Putting her to bed because she couldn’t stay awake
  3. Offering her the clear dummy when she wanted the pink one
  4. The cat running away after she’d pulled his tail for the 9th time
  5. Not offering her my WHOLE bar of chocolate
  6. Covering her up with the duvet
  7. Me putting her down when she pointed to the floor to get down
  8. Stroking her head
  9. Offering her a grape
  10. Wrapping her in a towel without leaving her arms exposed

I think it’s safe to assume that toddlers are more of a walking contradiction than myself… and that really is saying something.

What are the reasons for your toddler’s tantrums this week?

M xox

The Joolz Essentials Blanket: A REVIEW

ParentingReviews / Dec 12, 2017 /

Joolz are a brand that have been on my radar for a little while now; a young Dutch company with big ambitions, they’re a bunch who seem to really “get it”. All of their products are designed to make life a bit easier and nicer along the way…. And, well, who doesn’t want an easy life?

I’ve had my eye on the Joolz Geo Duo for a while now (yes, I now lust after prams, what’s happened to me?) but it’s only been in the last few weeks that I discovered that they do accessories too… and what gorgeous accessories they are!

When the Joolz team offered to send us one of the Essentials Blankets, I jumped at the chance to check it out first hand. Having bought far too many items that were never used with Bells (hello wipe warmer I’m looking at you), blankets were never one of those and I’m of the opinion that you can never have too many. Whether it’s on her pram, in her cot, for tucking her up on the sofa or keeping her warm in the car, a good blanket is probably one of the most versatile items you’ll own. It’s even been known to turn a good nap into a great nap…. I know, right?

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When the blanket arrived, the beautiful design and quality was apparent immediately. With a gorgeous heavy ribbed knitted outer layer and a soft jersey lining, it’s perfect for keeping Bells cosy on the coldest of days whilst letting her skin breath and temperature regulate. The ribbed design also means that it looks good wherever you’re using it, so it’s not one you’ll be hiding away in a hurry.

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The Essentials Blanket has become a go-to whenever we’re out and about, therefore as I’m sure you can imagine with any toddler, it wasn’t long until it needed a wash. Thankfully it’s machine washable and so we were back in action in no time, much to mine (and Bell’s) relief. It stayed as lovely and soft as when we first got it, which is quite something given my washing skills.

As the blanket is made from 100% organic cotton, I can have peace of mind that it’s looking after the planet as well as my Minis.

It’s bigger than your usual baby blanket which means that it’s still plenty big enough to ensure Bells is tucked in properly for her nap without any chilly toes! However, if the second baby is a girl, there might be a fight over who gets custody of this blanket. It’s so gorgeous, I’m thinking of getting another as our receiving blanket as they come in a whole host of beautiful colours… you know, nudes and mints, without a single sickeningly sweet pink tone in sight.

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I genuinely can’t speak highly enough of the Joolz Essentials Blanket. We’ve had so many compliments when we’ve been out and about with it and it’s never far out of reach… which is handy when it’s as chilly as it is at the moment. Brrrrr…..

If you’re wanting to lay your hands on one of the Joolz blankets, you can purchase it here for £50. You won’t have a need to buy any other blankets after this one.

M xox

NB: Please note that this blanket was sent to us to review, however this hasn’t affected opinion and this review in any way, I genuinely love it. I’ll never be anything less than honest with you guys… pinky promise.