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Archive: January 2014

New Year, New Start as most people say near the end or the start of a year. Most of us do some New Years Resolutions, some stick to it and some don't. Would you stick to it if you would save money out of it? Usually New Years Resolutions are kicking your dirty habits away, such as going out less, quit smoking, going on a diet and more. From any of them you could easily save money. Leeds Building Society did a survey on how much people spend on average on different things. This was really interesting!

Takeaways
Me and my partner used to get takeaways every week, we don't so often now but when we did we would spend roughly £15 a week on a takeaway for both of us. On average in the UK roughly 10% of people spend around £15 a week on takeaways. The average spent on a takeaway in the UK is £9.47. If we were not to spend this much on a takeaway every week we could of saved £15 a week and £780 a year!!

Smoking
Shockingly £21.30 is spent on cigarettes. I never smoke, maybe one fag or two when i am out drinking which is hardly ever. Iwan quit smoking months ago, which i am really glad. It has made a difference in money. It has saved us roughly £700 + a year.

Evenings Out
We all know how expensive it is to go out now days. A trip to the cinema can cost you maybe near £20 just to see the film not including the food. On average £17.34 is spent per week by the UK on evenings out. Me and Iwan don't really get the time, but when we do it's only every few months and we always spend roughly £30 + or maybe a little less or more.

If you visit Kick My Habits site you will see how much you spend a week and how much you could save if you would stop your habits. It would mean a healthy you and a more wealthier you to! With all the money you would usually spend on a typical habit every week you could just put it in a pot, save it and pay for a holiday with your family, or maybe go treat yourself or the kids.

After reading this and visiting the site will you make changes in your 'habits'?

Kick My Habits Interactive Tool from Leeds Building Society
Kick My Habits by Leeds Building Society

PR Collaboration. Please read my disclaimer


Joining the team of 'parenthood' really scared me. I wasn't sure what to expect. Even though i was around kids and worked with children also doing a childcare course. I was just so nervous. Nothing could prepare you having your own child. Especially if it was your first. No one could tell you how your child would behave, how you would cope and tell you exactly what to do. It's only experience and day to day life that could do that.

Support
Being a parent, i think it is quite important you know that you're not alone. As i've noticed during my first pregnancy i lost friends, but with 2nd i lost even more and even lost the ones i lost in the first pregnancy too. Some friends just aren't worth keeping, it's just a shame you have to realise that once you're going through the time you want your friends there most. It's a shame. It's quite important you stay close to family and you keep your close friends that are there for you. If not, you can become very lonely and that is not good for you or your child/children.

Have a break
Make sure you do have break. Having a night 'off' or a 'day off' or just a couple of hours will not make you a bad parent. It will make you feel sane, stress-free and relax a bit more. It's important to have a break from your child/children once in a while. Even if it is just for 30 mins or an hour. So whenever someone asks, take the chance and just relax or go out with friends, just enjoy yourself.

Stay calm
That is one thing i've learnt with having to children is to stay calm. No matter what kind of situation you are in. When your calm - they're calm.

Take advice
Even if you don't agree with some advice some people tell you, it may come handy in a few weeks, months or years. You just never know. I'd be lost without advice. Wheather it's from my Dad, Grandparents or friends! I think getting advice off people is really good and helpful.

Enjoy
Very important to try and enjoy every minute of being a parent. Children grow up way too fast. Before i know it Mia and Elliw will be 18 and probably want to leave the house! Instead of dealing with terrible two's and naughty three's we will be dealing with troubled teens. Can be hard sometimes or most of the time but just take 10 and think.



Talk About Sundays is going to be a new weekly Sunday link up Life-As-Mum is starting. It's a very easy one really. All you have to do is link up a post about what you have done on Sunday or even Saturday. 
Then every Wednesday/Thursday I will choose be favourite post and feature it on a blog post and Social Media.
I am looking for 2 other hosts. If you would be interested then please just e-mail me at :
awbsphotography@outlook.com

This Link Up will be starting next Sunday 2nd February. 

Here is my first post for 'Talk About Sundays'


Today was a busy day for my partner, but a lazy day for me and Elliw. As Mia was in her Dad's house it was just a day for me and Elliw. I moved the sofas around, and my god there was so many toys under the sofas! Other than that me and Elliw had a lovely 'mother and daughter' time together.


Elliw has changed so much recently. She is really trying her best to say some words. Such as she says 'Ju' for juice. She knows what Blankey, botal (bottle in welsh), cuddle and sws (kiss in welsh) means. And she knows who people are. 


I love watching her play. Especially with her favourite toys such as her wooden blocks. She has also loved this small book called 'This little piggy'. She always brings it to me for me to read it to her then she goes away with it with a massive smile on her face!



As you can tell, Elliw loves the camera. Minute she sees the phone or camera out she will say 'cheese' or do a funny face like she's done in some of these photos. It's really weird and nice how she does exactly the same cheeky smile just like what her Dad did when he was younger too. 


So this was my Sunday! hoping next Sunday i will be able to visit my nephew who i havent seen for a few weeks since we have been unwell :( Really can not wait too see him. 
Remember join up in this link up next Sunday!

Enjoy the rest of your week.

Giveaway

How would you like to win this B-qubed with Table Top?!
Well here is your chance to win one. Life-As-Mum has teamed up with Room to grow to give one lucky person a chance to win a gab b-qubed table top! I recently did a review on one of these, which you can read here.
There are 11 colours to choose from: Yellow, White, Black, Lime, Red, Brown, Berry, Royal Blue, Aqua, Pink and Orange.

All you have to do to enter this competition is do the entries below :)
PLEASE make sure to read all terms & conditions before you enter.

Terms & Conditions.
1. Competition starts 23rd January 10.30pm
2. Competition ends 9th February 2014 at 9.30pm.
3. All entries will be checked and any cheats will be taken out of the competition.
4. Winner will be chosen at random.
5. Winner will be contacted within 48 hours of competition ending.
6. If winner does not contact me back within 4 days - then i will choose another winner at random.
7. GOOD LUCK.



I got the chance to review a B-qubed with Table Top from Room To Grow. It's basically a bean bag with a table. How cool does that sound? Me and my partner we really excited for this to be delivered.


Our thoughts
When we got it delivered, I was thinking.. 'No way can that table be strong enough to hold drinks, plate and other things that tables hold'. Well i was so wrong! I usually use this to hold my drink and my snack plate when my youngest is sleeping for her nap and my eldest is in school. I was really impressed by it.
There are 6 holes in the bean bag and you stick the table top in one of the holes and there you go, a bean bag table!


Pros
- You can also make this as chair aswell as a table.
- Handy for small spaces.
- Very modern.
- Great material for children, quick wipe if it gets dirty or marked.
- Water resistant - great with kids!
- Very light.

Cons
- None.

What is also great about this is you can choose 11 different colours. We chose the lime green one as we are moving house in a couple of months and our main colour is going to be green so i thought it would like nice.
If it gets marked or dirty all you have to do is give it a quick wipe clean.

In the new house i think we will have this b-qubed with table top in the front/spare room or in the bedroom.

It's a great little table if you're not wanting to use a lot of space, and a great table to have if you have children around. I don't know if i would pay £79.99 for this but it is a very light, modern table which is great for children.

Where can i buy?
You can buy this B-qubed with Table Top here for £79.99

* I was sent this product to do an honest review. All words and photos are my own. Please read my Disclaimer.
Both my girls will get really moody at one point through the day. Usually when Mia finishes school and when Elliw wakes up from her nap. They both clash because Elliw wakes up from her nap 3pm - the same time we go and pick Mia up from school. So i get two very grumpy girls for atleast an hour or more. They will argue over toys, they will fight/argue and they will argue over what to watch on TV, oh and don't forget, they will moan and cry to just want to sit next to me! As i am writing this, Elliw is sitting next to me crying on and off for no reason at all. It is a daily thing so i am used to it. 

What to do when you have a grumpy child?

Ignore
I try my best to ignore them when they are in a bad mood for no reason. Mostly they want to be picked up, have cuddles and have their own way with everything. But having two children - you just can't do that! Otherwise you will get yourself stuck in a place where you will not be able to do anything yourself. I tend to go to the kitchen and do some cleaning there or in the dining room. 

Get on with what you are doing
Don't stop what you're doing, just carry on and they will soon realise that being grumpy and moody will not get them what they want! May take hours for them to settle but it will be worth it.

Nap time
Maybe it's nap time for them. Even if they don't usually take a nap, try them out too see if they will. If not, then atleast you tried.

Go out for a walk
Maybe they're bored. Go out for a walk. Calm yourself down and it will also calm the kids down too! Works wonders. I used to do this all the time when the weather was nice.



As we all know the Government is cutting some funding to the NHS. Just over 70% of people in Wales do not agree with this, 20.83% were not sure and only 8.33% agreed that fundings should be cut. My opinion? I'm not sure. I do think it is really wrong how there are people from other countries coming into our country just to have free NHS treatment. We also have heard news such as wannabe Model Josie Cunningham having a free boob job paid by the tax payers. This story made me and my partner so mad. I think it is really unfair the NHS wastes money like this. 54.17% of people in Wales agree that the NHS wastes money. It's really unfair.
Yet on the other hand, my mother-in-law was given a Kidney Transplant on the NHS and I think things like that they should be spending their money on. Surprisingly, the wannabe Model Josie Cunningham decided she wanted the implants removed and yet again wanted it for free and for the tax payers to pay yet again.
I think the reason so many people are against NHS at the moment is because there are a lot of people who mistreat the NHS.
41.67% of people in Wales feel like their doctors don't listen to them. I agree. Since having my two daughters I've been to doctors much more often, with them being poorly, something not being right or me catching their germs. I feel if I explain something I sometimes feel my doctor isn't listening and just wants to talk quick and go to the next patient. I do think doctors have to take time to listen to their patients. Such as a few months ago I told the doctors for months what was wrong with Mia and they did not listen as they kept repeating something totally different. In the end it was me who found out what was/is wrong with Mia and it is me that is sorting it out with no help from the doctor, which is quite dissapointing.
Would i go private if i could afford it? I'm not too sure. 45.83% of people in Wales would go through private if they could afford it. 33.33% would stay with the NHS and a 20.83% are not sure.
When I was in hospital giving birth to my daughters in 2009 and 2013 the staff there were amazing. I had a bit more support when my first child was born - which I would have preferred to have the same support in my second too! I do think some of the public/patients to have to think how many hours they work and overtime that they work to take care of patients. When I had my second daughter a midwife spoke to us and she said she was working overtime and she was not getting paid for it and how she hadn't had lunch yet so we do have to expect some nurses and doctors not to be in the best of moods but I do think they have to keep it to a standard where they don't take it out on the patients too much.Almost half (45%) of the people who had been surveyed said they would seek justice if they were mistreated by the NHS. If a family member or myself were mistreated I think I would definteley seek justice.
 
What do you think about the NHS?
I was never a fan of chips when i was younger as i really didn't like how my Dad cooked them! But then when i moved in with Iwan we usually had chips cooked in the fryer but since i started Slimming World i never really have chips. I'd been told Slimming World Chips weren't that nice. Last week i thought i would try them so i did - and they were absoloutley lovely and so yummy.

Here is the recipe for you:

Ingredients:
Potatoes.
Garlic Salt.
Salt.
Fry Light.

Method:
- Peel and cut the potatoes into chips shapes and sizes (roughly 1cm)
- Boil water in a pan with a little sale and garlic salt.
- When boiling, put the chips in and boil for only 4 minutes.
- Pre-heat over at 240.
- Drain the chips and leave in pan for 10 minutes.
- Shake the chips to make them have rough edges.
- Fry light an oven tray, lay the chips across, fry light over with garlic salt.
- Cook in over for 20-25 minutes.
- Turn half way through.


If you're like me, then you love tattoos! Well i'm not the type who goes over board. I've got 5 tattoos and 4 tattoos mean something to me. I'm sure everyone who has tattoos can agree with me that once you get a tattoo you want another! As i said, i've got 5 tattoos and only 4 of them mean something to me. I really regret one of my tattoos that is on the side of my right hand. It's just a pattern and i got it one day when i went to town with my friends, really regret getting it done. 
If you have a tattoo you regret have you thought of Laser Tattoo Removal? Some people try and avoid Laser Tattoo Removal and go for other ways to remove their tattoos such as removal creams. Removal creams will not get rid of the whole tattoo and i am sure you don't want to leave any scars and go through pain whilst burning your tattoo off like other people do! 
The best way to get rid of a tattoo is to talk to a trained professional and go through Laser Tattoo Removal. Laser Tattoo Removal is safe, simple and gives you the results you want. You should always go and talk to trained professional first before getting a Tattoo removed as it all depends on the colour, size and density of your tattoo, so talking to a professional you will get the right and safe treament to get rid of your tattoo. 
Most people get tattoos when they are young and rebellious! Some they will stick with the tattoo for life unlike others who will want to get rid of the tattoo. If you click this link here it gives you some tips on what a tattoo removal is like and what it will look and feel like before and after your Laser Tattoo Removal.
Sk:n Clinics offer this treatment and give you fantastic results. They also offer other treatments such as;
Acne Treaments
Are you someone who suffers with acne? This safe, painless and simple method is suitable for Aduls and Teenagers. 
Laser Hair Removal
If you have unwanted hair growing then this might be a treatment you would like.
Sk:n Clinics provide other kinds of treatments too. 




Since i started Slimming World i've found myself cooking right from scratch instead of ready cooked meals. And the past few weeks i've loved finding new recipes and making new things! Here is one i made today and i absoloutley loved it.

Coronation Chicken.

Ingredients.

Chicken strips.
Low Fat Natural Yoghurt.
Curry Powder.

Yep just those 3 simple ingredients. You could also add sultanas in too if you wish to add a bit more taste. 


What to have serve with?
I think salad with it was lovely. Otherwise you could have it in a sandwich. If you are on Slimming World you could use your Healthy B Bread for the sandwich. 
I came across this 'Family Photo Friday' through Baby And Me Blog.
I love taking photos and i love looking back at photos and how much my children have grown. So i thought i would link up with 'Family Photo Friday' with ThursdaysChild-FridaysThoughts.


This is a photo of my two daughters. Mia and Elliw. One day after school we went for a walk down the road from me. It was one of the first days that it was dry, so i thought why not? I really did regret not putting wellies on since they loved jumping in the puddles. But once they were home they put their shoes on the heater to dry and straight into their pyjamas. I love how close my two daughters are.

Family Photo Friday @ Thursday's Child, Friday's Thoughts
Feisty Fridays Link up is a new, fresh and simple way to get your Facebook/Twitter accounts more noticeable! 
This link up will be open ALL weekend. Friday morning until Sunday night.

Link up your Facebook OR Twitter (or both). Follow these simple rules before linking up please -

1. Follow my Twitter - @lifeasmumblog
2. Like my Facebook Page here
3. Put a badge up on a blog post or on your blog.
4. Share this link up please.
Enjoy!



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We recently thought it was time to move Elliw from her cot to a bed. As we already had a single bed from my uncle, i thought we would just put her straight into a single bed just like what we did with Mia. We pulled Mia's bed guard off hers and put it on Elliws bed. Mia has been brilliant without one, she now thinks she is a very big girl! 



I was really scared moving her from a cot to a bed as she is the youngest and still doesn't talk properly yet, she is still my little baby in my eyes. One day i thought 'right today is the night Elliw sleeps in this bed' so i moved all the clothes (the draws have been broken so all of her clothes were folded on the bed) and kept them away nicely and put new covers on top and folded the cot away. Which we are chucking at the end of the week actually. 

When we took her up to bed, we were really excited. Our baby girl going to her big bed. When she went to her room she was so confused as to where her cot was. When we put her in the bed she looked so proud. 
The first couple of weeks have been quite difficult trying to get her to settle since she kept coming out of the bed. Recently she seems to like sleeping on the floor but we always put her back in to the bed. Past few nights she has been easier to settle, she won't cry as much and she won't come out of her bed as much.

Tips from moving a toddler from a cot to a bed:

Make it exciting.
Maybe get a duvet cover that they like. If they like Sofia The First then maybe you could get a Sofia The First duvet cover. Praise them once they are in bed and call them 'big girl' / 'big boy' and make them proud of themselves.

Keep strong and stick at it.
Some toddlers won't be used to it, they may cry or keep coming out of their bed and just not settling. This is where you may have to do some controlled crying and stand your ground. Keep going back to the room and put the toddler back into bed and don't say anything.

How did you find moving your toddler from a cot to a bed? Any tips?

My girls LOVE drawing and colouring. Elliw loves drawing on the walls too! This is why they don't colour often but once the crayons and paper are out they love it. Mia will sometimes go to her room or in the dinning room to go and colour but Elliw does it now and then. 
Yesterday it was dull and gloomy outside so once Mia went to school i got loads of plain paper out and all the crayons and let Elliw go crazy! ha ha. She absoloutley loved it, she had so much fun. 
I think it's quite important to let your child draw/colour as often as you can so they can get used to it before going to school and learn about all the different colours.




Do your little ones like drawing/colouring?

I am a big fan of wooden toys for my girls. Only reason i don't buy them as much wooden toys as i like is that they're much more expensive than plastic toys. Reason why i really do like wooden toys is they are so much safer than any plastic toy as there is no risk of any chemicals and no batteries in no wooden toys which is a great advantage. 
Wooden toys are much more durable and could last years and years because they are so strong. They have a smooth surface which not many plastic toys do. My girls seem to love playing with wooden toys. If there was a box of wooden toys and a box of other toys they would deffinteley go for the wooden toys! 
Recently we got asked to do a review on these fab wooden toys for Dolls Houses. We used to have a dolls house but we had to throw it away. Once i got the toys to review, i kept them aside for 2 days as Mia wasn't behaving very well. Once she started behaving i showed her these toys and she was so happy! She loves dolls houses furniture and little figures and the costumes made them even better!  


 She couldn't wait to open them. So as i opened them she kept telling me where to put them for her. I got to review 3 wooden fairy dolls and a Lemon Sorbet dinning room furniture set. Mia was over the moon.


She sat down and played with these for well over an hour, and she has done every day since she had them. 
I found the fairies a bit hard to sit on the chairs but Mia found a way to do it, so she was happy. They seem like toys that will last and I'm really happy with that. Mia absoloutley loves them. Elliw came over and had a nosey sometimes but Mia played with them mostly. 

 Overall: I think they're worth the money, especially if you have a dolls house, these would look great and their other range. Mia loves playing with these new toys from Dolls Houses. They are strong and not flimsy cheap wood like some stores sell and you can tell that they are going to last a very long time. I've nothing bad to say to be honest. 

You can buy these sets on Dolls Houses website here.

* I was given these products to do an honest review. Please read my Disclaimer.

We're going on an adventure

Me and my partner have been so shattered these past couple of weeks. For some reason Mia and Elliw (Mia mostly) have been waking up between 1am - 6am every night/morning and more than once too! Mia wants to wake up, watch TV or sleep in my bed - which is a big no no. I tried my hardest to get her into a routine to sleep in her own bed so i am not going to mess it up! After a few cries, moans and a few 'mam' or 'Iwan' lasting for about an hour or two she finally nods off to bed. I get more tired as I am the only one who can settle Mia and the only person she will allow to put to bed so i was the one having to get up to her and put her to bed every time she woke up. 
Eventually when we thought we could both go back to sleep, Elliw wakes up. This is where Iwan gets up, we try our best not to give her a bottle as we noticed we did that before and she was waking up every single night for a bottle as she was in a habbit. Takes an hour or two with Elliw to settle too. 
Then once she is asleep, Iwans alarm goes off 6.45am - 7am for him to go to work and that is when Mia will wake up every morning even if she was up a lot of times in the night. Iwan takes Mia downstairs in the mornings before he goes to work so i get a nosey on Facebook on my phone to wake me up a little then i get up and ready and wake up Elliw if i need to! 


BUT last night - they slept ALL night. I even woke up in the middle of the night to check just incase. But i have to say last couple of days Elliw has been really poorly - but slept OK in the nights, woke up once or twice the other night but in the mornings she has been right down in the dumps. I woke up 7am today and since Elliw was quiet and still a little down i thought id sit her in the bathroom with some toys as Mia was watching TV downstairs, i popped to the shower quickly. Then got ourselves ready, had breakfast and did some house chores. 

It's mad how much difference you feel when you've had some sleep! mind you, i still need to catch up on a lot of sleep but i'm not going to complain that i had a full night sleep last night! Happy Mummy! 

How long do your children sleep for?! 
Do you appreciate where you live? I did live in a small City but for the past 3 years i have lived in a village in North Wales. I love going out places in North Wales, there are so many lovely views to see and take photos of. 

This fly-over picture that my partner took when he was in a helicopter a few months ago. This is a part of our village.







I love just sitting down and looking at mountains or even walking on a path through the mountains. I think it is really nice and breathtaking.














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