Saturday, 23 September 2017

Little Tikes - Sandy Lagoon Waterpark Review

Ever since attending sand parks and going to the beach on holiday, Lily has just been obsessed with playing with sand. Its now something she is asking to do at home and so we were lucky enough to get offered to review this Sandy Lagoon Waterpark toy from Little Tikes. 

I am about as excited as Lily about this toy. Just look at it. For a sand and water play toy it is just amazing. 

It is quite large at 82cm by 76cm but when put together it offers so much for play. 

It has 2 sides to it. One for water play and one for sand play. The sand play section comes with a lid. In the middle there is 2 water slides and at the water side there is a diving board and a dump bucket to pour and dump water into. Then at the sand side there is a sand spinner that you pour the sand onto. 
It also comes with a 2 in one rake and shovel and a little cup for pouring.

Another added bonus to this water park is that it comes with 2 characters for play. The characters also have a dingy to float around the water in and can slide down the slides by pressing a button at the back.

All the items are so colourful and so child friendly and made with a real sturdy plastic. The side with the water also has a plug so you can drain away the water when you have finished. 

We put this toy toggether for Lily the night before so then she would be able to play with it the next day. I got my partner to put it together and it did take some time, so I would recommend not doing it in front of your eager child. There were some parts that were easy to put together though. Like the legs that just slot in. 

When Lily got home from nursery I got it out for her to play with. She was so excited! We poured some sand into the sand area and some water into the water area. It holds quite a lot of water and sand and so at this point I didn't fill it fully with water and we need to go out and buy some more sand. I only bought a small bag. 

Lily got stuck in with playing with it straight away. She was using the scoop to scoop and pour the sand and would pour it into the spinner section. Unfortunately the spinner didn't seem loose enough and wouldn't spin around and we had to do this our selfs with our hands. Which was a shame as Lily said "its not working". It worked when we used wet sand though and so it does seem to need a lot of weight to spin. 

Lily really loved the water area which was quite a surprise to me. Usually she enjoys playing with the sand more but she was really enjoying scooping and pouring the water with the cup. She loved the dump bucket and filled it up and loved pouring it over the characters heads. But her favourite thing to do was make the characters slide down the slide. She got so much enjoyment out of seeing them go splash! 
I really love how much it does remind me of going to a water park. Its great for a sand and water toy to have a theme to it. 

I can really see Lily having hours of fun with this for years to come. Really hoping for a dry autumn so we can get our coats on and play out with it. 

You can buy the Sandy Lagoon Waterpark from the Little Tikes Website at a price of £69.99. 

Does your child love sand and water play? 
What would there favourite feature be of the Sandy Lagoon Waterpark? 

Friday, 22 September 2017

Sticking Activity with Lily

Sticking is something that Lily has loved doing for quite a while now. But she has really improved lately and is now understanding how to create a nice picture from sticking. 

Last week we decided to do some pictures using lots of random bits of cut outs. I used coloured paper, magazine cut outs, old wrapping paper and we used some stickers to. 

Lily is getting really good at placing the glue on the paper and then sticking the cut outs down in that place with the glue. In the past she would put the glue down and then try and place the cut out in a compleatly different area. She is also starting to not over lay pieces and spread them out on the paper and also making sure that the gaps are filled. 

Lily really enjoyed this activity and ended up making a really good picture that is now proudly displayed on the fridge. 

Sticking is the perfect activity to learn hand and eye-coordination and master fine motor skills. 

Here are a few pictures of Lily sticking and her finished piece. 

Does your child enjoy sticking? 

Thursday, 21 September 2017

Minnie Mouse Happy Helpers House Review

Lily's only recently discovered her love for Disney and therefor her love for Minnie and Micky mouse. Minnie mouse is often her go to teddy that she spends most nights cuddling up to and so I knew that she was going to love the Minnie mouse Happy Helpers House that we were getting sent from IMC Toys to review.

I was just as excited for this toy as I was to give it to Lily. On the box it looked amazing! 

But as soon as I opened it, my heart dropped a little at how much construction was needed to put it together. My partner (who happened to be the one who got given the job to build it) laughed and said that you may need to be a qualified construction worker to build it. It really did take some time to put together and my partner who IS NOT a construction worker did manage to do it in the end. But I would recommend putting it together when your child is not around as it does take some time. The second thing to take time is the amount of stickers that need to be stuck on. I did this job and it took me ages BUT it did look amazing when finished. 

The next morning I gave it to Lily and she was amazed at it. The first thing she said was "its so pretty" and she is right, the house really is pretty. It also has so many play options. There is the bedroom that comes with 2 beds. A living room with Tv and sofa, a kitchen with opening drawer and stove top, and an office room on the bottom floor with 2 office tables. The main doors open up and close and then there is the lift that needs 2 AAA batteries to make it light up and make noise when a character is placed inside. 

It also comes with wardrobe, and vanity table and over 20 accessories. Then of corse it wouldn't be much of a play house with out some characters. So there is a Minnie and Daisy duck included. Both of these characters bend so they can sit on the chairs that are in the house. 

Lily has really enjoyed playing with this toy. Her favourite thing to do was put them in the lift and make them go upstairs to bed. This toy leads to your child using such imagination when playing with the characters. Lily had some full on conversations happening with the figures. 

If your child is a disney fan then I would really recommend this toy for them. 

You can buy the Minnie Mouse Happy Helpers House at Amazon, Argos and many other stores for £49.99.  

Is your child a disney fan? Would they love the Minnie Mouse Happy Helpers House? 

Wednesday, 20 September 2017

Getting Prepared for Autumn with Children

It's the start of Autumn, one of my favourite seasons. I can already feel the weather getting cooler. But that means that soon to come will be the crunchy colourful leaves and it will be time to get out and go for some nice long Autumn walks.

So I thought it would be great to make a list of all those clothing essentials for Children that are going to be perfect for Autumn time. 

1. A Nice Warm Jumper/Cardigan 
If your anything like me, the first thought of cold weather and Im super excited to get into a nice warm jumper. The thought of getting to pick out Lily some super cute jumpers really excites me. You also may be like me and your child still have lots of wear in some t-shirts and so a nice fasten up cardigan would be perfect to put on over the top of them to keep them warm.You have plenty of choice of styles from half buttoned up cardigans to hoodies. This one from Esprit is perfect as it is fully buttoned at the front, is made from a soft fleece, has cute little pockets and a hood which is perfect for those Autumn walks. 

2. A Warm Coat
Usually a warm coat is something that lasts quite a while, also something that is needed for quite a while. Lily is starting to grow out of hers and so I shall be looking into getting a new one for her soon. Something I definetly will be thinking about is how waterproof the coat is. It rains a lot here and its very easy to get caught out in it. Lily also loves having pockets in her coat, she loves to collect things on her outings and pop them into her pockets. 

3. Hat, Gloves and Scarf
These may be something you use nearer the end of Autumn but that all depends on where you live. Living in Lancashire you find that we get a lot of cold days in autumn and there may be days where it can get really cold. I love nothing more than a brisk cold walk on the beach in autumn and a hat is definetly needed to protect the ears of our little ones. I usually buy a variety of hats, you can start with something a little thinner and then by the end of Autumn start using a nice thick one. Gloves are great for days out collecting things, after a while of carrying a bucket and picking up things like leaves, little fingers are sure to get cold. Then scarfs, there are so many varieties now, from long scarfs, short scarfs, snoods, bandana scarfs. As well as providing warmth, these are also the perfect Autumn accessory to make any kids outfit look stylish. 

4. Thicker Pyjamas 
As the days get colder, so will the nights. Its time to put away all those cute short Pyjamas and opt for some ones that are long sleeved and long legged. You could also add extra blankets to help keep your child warm at night but I find that Lily kicks her blankets off so much that some warmer Pyjamas are essential. 

5. Warmer Footwear
Wether it be for long walks, muddy walks, or even a day out to the shops, warmer footwear is now going to be something i'm looking at. I feel like Lily's summer sandals hardly got worn and so i'm feeling like I still want to put her in them, but looks like I need to ditch them and replacement with a pair of warm trainers, boots or even wellies for the wet days. 

It looks like I better get shopping soon!

What Essentials will you be buying for Autumn? 

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Tinsy Winsy Weeny Tot Dolls Review

Are you ready to see the most adorable toys ever? Lily And I got sent these Tinsy Winsy Weeny Tot dolls and they are just so cute!

They are tiny realistic looking baby dolls that are the perfect size to fit in your child's hands, AND there are 15 of them to collect. 

We got sent 2 dolls and a pram accessory pack which also includes a doll. 

Lily really loves her babies so she was so excited to see them, and couldn't wait to get them opened. The individual dolls come in little cots, so when you take off the plastic lid and take the baby out you are left with a cardboard cot. This is a really nice touch and adds a extra element of play. As soon as Lily held the babies in her hands the first thing she said was "Awww So Cute!" 

Thats exactly what they are. Really cute. The expressions on the face are so life like although the eyes to me do look a little funny. But there is a lot of detail in the face. There outfits they come in are really sweet too. The 2 dolls that we got both had little pram suits on that were both really soft and full of detail. 

As you undress your doll you find that it has a soft huggable body. When the pram suits are off you can see that the babies have such tiny hands and feet but with such detail to them. These babies are made really well and are a treasure to hold in your hand. One more tiny detail that has been added is that they all have hospital bands on there wrists which has their individual name on and date of birth. Its such a beautiful little detail to be added. 

We then opened the pram accessory set. This set also came with a doll inside, so now Lily had 3 dolls and was very impressed. The pram itself is really nice. Its made with a really decent quality of plastic and the carry cot can be lifted on and off the pram, just like your can with a real pram. The handle moves so you can push the pram or carry it and it also comes with a hood that can be pulled forward. This set really encourages your child to use their imagination. Lily just loved pushing the baby around the house in the pram and telling the baby to go to sleep. 

Other extra's the pram comes with is a changing bag with has a nappy and changing matt with it. Though Lily has been using the changing matt as a blanket as that is what it seemed like it was. Its great that she can use her imagination and use the changing matt as both. The nappy is really easy to put on the baby when you have taken its pram suit off. 

Lily has really enjoyed playing with this toy over the last week and its great for her to have a toy she really enjoys. She loves playing 'mummy' and this set gives her a really good opportunity to become that role. 

The Tinsy Winsy Weeny Dolls retail at £7.99 each and the first collection is a special edition so I would recommend snapping them up while you can. 

The Pram Play Set is retailed at £14.99 and you can also buy a bedtime pack which comes with bed which includes working drawers and a lovely mobile. I am very tempted to buy her this set for her birthday as over all I think these are just such wonderful toys and she really enjoys them. 

These toys are aimed at children aged 3 to 7 years old and are available at Smyths Toy Superstores. 

Would your child enjoy a toy like this? 

Saturday, 16 September 2017

The Blog On Xmas Jumper Linky

I am super thrilled to say that in just over a weeks time I shall be attending the BlogOn Xmas Blogging Conference. This is my first time at a blogging conference and I actually think I have left all nerves behind and replaced them with excitement. I am such a people person and so Im really looking forward to meeting new people, seeing new brands and new toys, and of corse learning such wonderful new lessons about blogging. 

As the event is getting near everyone who is attending has been invited to answer a short questionnaire about themselves so we can all get to know each other. So here is mine....

I hope my readers also enjoy learning a few more facts about ME! 

Please share your favourite photograph of yourself. 
This one is tough one. Lately there isn't many photographs of myself I love. There are lots of pictures with Lily and I that I love, but alone there are maybe a handful. Im also trying to find a recent one as my style and look has changed since becoming a mum. So I have chosen this one... It was the one night where my hair fell PERFECTLY with no effort and I love this picture I got. Vain maybe I know, but I guess its fine to love the way you look from time to time!! 

If you could choose a band to play in your garden for your birthday, who would you choose? 
Im actually a little bit of a punk rocker. I love all the Punk bands of the past but actually the one band I would love to play is more of a 90's punk rock band and that would be Bowling For Soup. I love how upbeat and happy they are and I also am friends with Chris the bassist from the band and we chat on facebook from time to time. It has been a long time since I saw him in person so that would be just lovely to have him there. 

What do you take with you for long visits to the toilet? 
What are those? I swear since having Lily they have all been quick visits with either her attending them or her shouting me for something from around the house. I guess I always have my phone on me thought so it would probably be that. 

What is the most unusual job you have had? 
I wouldn't say unusual as such but before Lily I was working as a Fashion Show Organiser and I did organise a fashion show in the rain. That was different... and wet! haha

Knitting, Sewing or Crotchet? 
Stab myself with a needle. 

Without looking it up, what is a jerkinhead?
Ahem.. this is a CHILD FRIENDLY blog... So i'm innocently going to go with a type of food? *Big Cheesy Grin and Thumbs up*

If you could have as much of one food forever, what would it be? 
Chocolate, and it wouldn't make me fat or make my teeth fall out either! 

What is the scariest thing you have ever done? 
Im scared of flying and I flew to Prague on my own and spent a week there on my own, while staying with a french guy I had never met before. Its called Couchsurfing, some of you may have heard of it but its practically where people put you up in there homes for free mostly to make new friends. Best week of my life and couchsurfing is one of the best experiences too. 

If you needed a get away driver who would it be? 
One thats not going to give me a heart attack? 

Would you rather live in Narnia or Hogwarts? 
Hogwarts for sure! I really want to try the every flavour jelly beans! 

What snack food says Christmas to you? 
Cheese! I eat cheese all year round but at christmas time I go all out and have so many different varieties. 

Is there life on Mars? 
If so, lets hope their friendly, I really don't fancy the idea of an alien invasion. 

What Christmas movie would you be a character in and who would play you? 
Elf! That would be fun. I would love Mila Kunis to play me. 

What are you most proud of? 
As well as Lily who is the bestest little star I could of wished for. I would have to say the fashion show in the streets I put on which got published all over the place, even on the ITV website and my photography which got published on vogue online. 

Blog ON Conference

Friday, 15 September 2017

Hugzzie Review and Giveaway

Lily and I are so happy to have found out about these brilliant cuddly friends called Hugzzies. 

Hugzzies are your child's new warm best friend. A super cuddly teddy bear that has a microwaveable lavender infused wheat bag inside. It Velcro's around your child's waist to give that feeling of a warm hug. What could be better? 

Hugzzies have a choice of wonderful animals and they let us choose one to review. Lily chose the cat who is called Carly. 

Lily loved Carly as soon as I got her out of the box. At first she grabbed her and decided to use her as a pillow. I let her do this for a little while and then showed her it went around the waste with velcro. 

The designs of these are super child friendly. The characters are so lovely and I think having animals is perfect for children to be able to choose their favourite. The teddy has really soft fur and the fur carries on around the band that goes around the waste. It has a really long piece of velcro so then it can be altered to fit around your child's waist. It fit perfectly around Lily's and she was really impressed with it. 

Lily soon complained that she was cold. She totally takes after me and would probably complain she was cold with the heating on and a thick jumper on and blanket haha. It was the perfect time to test out the Huggzie. 

To warm it up, you take out the bag which is inside the cat teddy. You follow the instructions and heat it up in the microwave depending on your microwave strength. You must check that it is not to hot before giving it to your child. Place it back in the teddy and hold it for a few moments to check. Lily's came out the microwave at the perfect temperature and lovely and warm to cuddle. 

I wrapped it back round her waist and she started to play with it on. It didn't come loose once. She even slid down her slide and it stayed on. But she eventually took it off and decided she would rather cuddle up to it like a teddy bear as she was getting tired and it was time to watch a little TV. I could tell that Lily liked the warmth as she didn't stop cuddling it once. She even said to me at one point "its nice and warm". 

One last thing to mention is the scent. The lavender smell is quite strong which doesn't bother me at all. I like the smell of Lavender but Lily is quite fussy and I half expected her to not like the strong smell, but actually she was fine with it and didn't even mention it. 

I have tried the Huggzie myself and it really is nice to snuggle to keep you warm. In fact i'm very much considering going to warm it up and give it a cuddle now. It really is a must for the upcoming colder months. 

There are 5 characters to buy and they cost £9.99 each which I think is a great price! To check out the rest of the characters head to the Hugzzies website now.

Hugzzies have kindly let me give one away! To win a Hugzzie of your choice. Enter on the Gleam app below. 

Win a Hugzzie of your choice

Thursday, 14 September 2017

Mid Month more About Me - My Tattoo

This month I decided to treat myself to a new tattoo. I have always had 5 tattoo's on my body, but only small ones. 

I started with a heart on my hip when I was 17 (with permission from my parents) then after that I got a rose near my bikini line. Then a star on my ankle, a rose on my foot and then my last was a band name on the top of my back. I was 19 when I got that last tattoo. 

At the time I was really into a band called Army of Freshmen. They are a Punky type band. The band loved it and I was the first Uk fan to get a tattoo done. I must admit this tattoo got a lot of attention from people working with the band. In fact I even had Jared from bowling for soup take pictures and a video of the tattoo when I was backstage one time hanging out with the boys from Army of Freshmen. 

I have always said that I would not get rid of the tattoo and that for me it holds great memories. While this is true, the tattoo also got me unwanted attention. People coming up close trying to read it. Asking me a million questions and some even making fun of it. I once got asked "Why do you have a barcode tattoo'd to your back". 

Im now 30 and so I had the tattoo 11 years. But it was time to get rid of it and get it covered up. It really didn't look good anymore as the black outline of the letters had got so thick that they had all blended in. It was really hard to read now and so I wanted it replacing. 

I decided that I wanted some sort of camera design onto my back. But was told that I would need something dark, probably red and black to cover up the words. So we added roses to the design. 

I was told it would cost £160, and take 3 hours. This would be the longest I had sat for a tattoo but I have a high pain threshold so it was fine to me. 

I must admit, it hurt a lot more than I thought it would. It ended up a lot bigger on my back than I thought it would. But i sat there still as anything and didn't complain once. The tattooist even used the words "hardcore" to describe how I handled the pain. They told me they have seen grown men cry haha. 

He took a photo just after he had done all the outline and here it is. You can clearly see the old army of freshmen tattoo under it. 

The second part of the 3 hours was meant to be the colouring in of the tattoo. But he only managed to do the shading on the camera and roses and the black on the leaves. Leaving the tattoo unfinished and looking like this. 

Which meant that I had to go back in for another session of 2 hours to have it finished. I actually dreaded the second 2 hours. The worst part of the 3 hours was the last half an hour because it was so tender that It was really starting to kill. I had it in my head that it was going to hurt more this time as it was going over parts of a tattoo that had only just healed. 

I was wrong though and it really only felt the same amount of pain as the first time. In fact It may have hurt less this time. So this second session we got the roses filled in and the film running through the middle done. BUT its still not finished and I have to go back to have the end of the leaves done green. Also to my disappointment, you can still see the outline to the words army of freshmen. Looks like a darker red is needed to fully cover it. So will need to go back and get that done. 

Overall it will have cost me nearly £300 to get done! Way more than I wanted to spend but not much I can do about that now. Here is what it looks like now. You will have to keep an eye out on my IG as when its fully done and fully healed I will pop a picture on there. 

Do you have any tattoo's? 
How did you find the pain? 

Wednesday, 13 September 2017

Baby Born Camping Set Review

Lily just loves to play with her dolls. I love watching her imagination grow as she plays new roles with them.

So when I got offered the chance to review the Baby Born Camping set I thought this was a great opportunity for Lily to have new aspect of role play with her dolls. 

For some reason I thought that I may have to assemble the tent, but I was wrong and the tent is actually pop up. 
The set comes with tent, sleeping bag, roll up matt, fire place and pretend marshmallow on a stick. 

After popping up the tent, I was a little disappointed to see how creased it was and how bent the front of it was. I hope over time this all drops out so it has a neater appearance. This obviously didn't bother Lily thought who thought the little tent was great. 

I had planned to take this outside for Lily to play with over the summer, but we have just had so many wet days that even when the sun does come out, the grass is still wet. So we have had to make do with playing with it indoors. 

The front of the tent has a part where you can make the tent open or closed. To make it open you roll up the front and velcro it together so then you can place your dolls in and out of it. 

She loved placing her dolls inside it and saying its sleep time now. 

The sleeping bag is great. Really good quality and really does remind me of a mini version of a real sleeping bag. I love the colours and funky patterns and its really easy to place your dolls in and out of it. 

The roll out matt is also great and reminds me of a mini version of a real matt you would get for camping. Though Lily called it a picnic blanket and used it for them to sit and eat on outside the tent. When it comes to toys like this, its great for children to be able to use their imagination to create what ever play scenario's they can. 

The campfire and marshmallow on a stick is so cute. The fire lights up to make it look like a real fire and I love the idea of roasting a marshmallow on a stick over it. But we obviously haven't had enough marshmallows on sticks as Lily decided that it was actually a hammer for putting up the tent. Again it was great to see her using her imagination. 

I did however struggle to fold the tent away for storage later on. 

Over all this is a nice little set and makes a great little gift to add onto the your child's baby born collection. You can buy the camping set for £29.99

As well as the camping set you can buy additional outfit for your Baby Born dolls. You have a choice of the Camping outfit which has a T- shirt, Shirt, Shorts, Hat and shoes. Which is RRP of £21.99 or their is Fun by the Lake which is a swimming outfit which includes costume, sandals and goggles. This is RRP £16.99.

Head to Zapf Creations Website to see more of what you can buy.

Does your little one enjoy camping? Would they like the Baby born camping set? 

Tuesday, 12 September 2017

My Photography Post - September 2017

As well as working hard being a mummy to Lily, one of the other things I do is photography. I shoot lots of different things, fashion, weddings, photo journalism, though at the moment not getting much time to shoot. 

To keep my head in photography I have decided to do a blog post a month all about my photography, you can see August's post here

A few months ago you may have seen me post a photograph of my friend who was pregnant. Well last month I had the pleasure of photographing her tiny little daughter.

With her permission she let me share the photographs I took of her for my monthly photography post and so here they are. I hope you enjoy the awe of them and I hope I don't accidently make any of you broody. 

Which of this months pictures do you like the most?