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Archive: June 2015

Sunrise started way back in 1981, founded by Paul and Terry Klaassen. There are more than 300 Sunrise Communities in the UK, USA and Canada. With 27 communities in England and Wales. Sunrise do Residental, Dementia and Nursing care and is a people-centred service.

I was recently asked to take a look at some recipes and given some money towards ingredients to do some recipes. The Recipes I chose to do are the ones shown below. Luckily, both me and my partner like cooking and ever since changing our eating habits just over 2 years ago, we love cooking from scratch. Home-made cooking always beats a ready-made meal, doesn't it?

Sunrise's Award-Winning chef's have plenty more recipes for you too see if you click HERE.




 
When cooking your own foods, I think it is very important too see how much calories, salt, fat, saturated fat, sugars etc you are taking in whilst eating. I personally look at what I am eating now, especially now that I am wanting too loose weight so I do find it quite important, personally.
 
I loved every single recipe shown above. The Onion soup was delicious, although next time I think I will try without the alcohol. I didn't have too much as it was a starter. My partner also enjoyed all 4 recipes. My particular favourite was the Bread and Butter Pudding which I really enjoyed. I didn't know it was so simple to make either! Although I burnt it a little, I think I did the temperature wrong. It was still tasty, with custard of course!
 
{As you see, I did burn it but honestly, I really enjoyed it and the taste was so yummy!}
 
* I was paid £20 to buy some ingredients to do some recipes and in return I wrote a post with links. All words and opinions and images are my own. Unless stated otherwise. (The recipe photos are by Sunrise, they are not my images).
 

I took the girls to school as normal in the morning yesterday. Picked Elliw up 11 and picked Mia up at 3. We came home by 3.30pm and the girls played in the back garden for a bit until Mia came back in because apparently there were too many bugs and flies outside for her to play outside. I helped Mia with her homework, whilst Elliw was playing with the iPad for a bit.


I've noticed the TV is hardly ever switched on in the day anymore. They are either playing with eachother, drawing or we are out. I like it like that. I don't like the TV on all day. After Mia finished her homework she decided she wanted to play pretend school. So that is what she did. I decided it was the perfect chance to get some housework done. I also decided since they were in a really good mood, I got them to help me clean and tidy the front room {which is their play-room at the moment}. They actually had fun, we all did! After they finished helping me, Elliw went back on the iPad, Mia went back to playing school and I went to the room under the stairs to get the hoover out. I hate getting the hoover out but it was the perfect opportunity to hoover the whole house. So that is what I did.




About 5 minutes into me hoovering, Daddy came home. He told us we were all going out for food. So I hurried up and hoovered the living room, front room, hall way, stairs, the landing, bathroom and bedrooms! Then I had a little rest because I was so damn hot and sweaty {lovely...not!}. After I cooled down, we all got ready and off out we went.

We decided to go to Table Table for food. Which is on the docks in a town near us. The food was lovely. We even got a pudding - which was delicious. The girls were well behaved. They didn't moan or cry once whilst we were there. Which of course, made our evening even better. Whilst Daddy went to pay me and the girls decided to go and have a small walk on the docks and look at the boats. There was plenty of room for the girls to run around and have fun too. Daddy joined us after he paid.


Our small walk to see the boats leaded to a walk all the way around to the other side of the docks and then lead to a nice long walk back to the car. It was lovely. We stood by the wall and just looked at the sunset. The girls were still well behaved. They enjoyed themselves so much.

Once we reached the car, the girls wanted to play the iPad and draw. So that's what they did. We went for a ride out in the car, so we took the long way back home. Which was also a nice change, again. We arrived home just after 8.20pm. The girls went to bed no problem, after their story. They went to sleep pretty quickly too! Then me and Daddy had a quiet night in catching up on soaps and Big Brother!

I think unplanned family evenings and days out are always the best. Daddy works every day of the week and last week he worked all weekend too, so it was nice to spend time all together for a change.

And guess what?.... We took a family selfie too!


I think giving a child a bedtime story is an important part of a routine. Although, the only times I won't read my girls a bedtime story, is if they have misbehaved very badly or another reason. I was always given a bedtime story when I was younger by my Dad. I have given some of my books to my girls but there are still some packed away on the shelf in my Dad's, which I will give them to my girls when they are older.

We were asked if we wanted to review a book called 'The Girl Who Lost Her Name'. A book which also learns the child about the letters in their name. When given information about the book, I just had to say yes. When I go out looking for books, I always try my best to find books that will also learn my children something.

Each book is unique. When I received the book my Dad was also here. I opened the package and I was very impressed with the quality of the cover and pages. I was impressed by how interesting the book looked. I opened the first page and I loved how they made the book very personal by writing this personal message for Mia.
 
 
 "This isn't just any normal book, it's a book you can keep and show them when they are older too because it's personalised for them"
- My Father said.
 
I had to wait about a week until I could read this book to Mia. It arrived when Mia was in her Dad's so I had to wait a night. But then she has been having accidents, which I will talk about in another post.
 
When I showed Mia this book, she got overly excited. She couldn't wait until bedtime so we could read it together. I chose Mia to have this book because she is at the age of recognising letters and I thought, what a better way to learn the letters of her name.
 
This book is about a little girl who lost her name {of course} and she went on a magical adventure to find the letters of her name. It is truly magical! Mia loved the adventure and the different creatures the little girl met through her adventure. She also loved the idea that the letters made her name, Mia. She loved the page which showed the alphabet. She is forever singing the alphabet recently. There is a great rhyme through the book and it really is a great book to read with your children.
 
"The quality of this book is great! Worth the money."
- My Father said.
 
 I am looking into buying Elliw one, but I won't be giving hers until she stopped ripping up books!


You can buy your own book on the lostmy.name website for only £18.99.

Find a discount code on my Facebook page here.
 

* I was given this book free of charge in return of an honest review. All words, opinions and images are my own.
Mammy loves you both, oh so much!
She really does.

Mammy only wants to go to toilet, why do you have to follow me up and say you want one first?
Every time when Mummy is bursting too!

Mammy loves having cuddles with you both...
But Mummy doesn't like it when you both argue over me {and then the fighting begins!}

Mammy hates giving you rows,
So please be good.

Mammy loves peeping through the door when you play nicely
It doesn't mean you have to play up when you've caught Mammy spying!

Mia it doesn't matter if Elliw doesn't want to do what you want her to do
So please don't throw a strank when she says no {you don't listen to mammy neither!}

Mammy hates to be woken up in the middle of the night.
So if you are still sleeping when I wake up in the morning expect Mammy to wake you up too! {hehe!}.

Oh Elliw. Mammy really dislikes it when you scream so loudly.
Really. I hate it. So please stop it!

Mammy loves you both so damn much.
But really dislikes changing dirty knickers, Mia! Please stop it.

Mammy does try her very best with you both.
So please bare with me if I have a bad day, Mammy doesn't mean to get miserable with you!

Mammy tries to get out of the house on time for school just so we don't have to walk so fast,
So please! Listen. Find your shoes. Wear your coat and behave!

Mammy is so lucky to have two little girls who listen to Mammy when we are out walking
But don't scare Mammy when running around the corner of the Doctors like most mornings!

Honest. Mammy hates passing the shop without getting you both anything.
But naughty children don't get treated {Sorry babies}.

Mammy is honestly thinking of taking half of your toys to the charity shop,
Just because you don't play with them but I will do it when you're not here!

When Mammy is in the kitchen or on her laptop, please don't think I am ignoring you both.
I am just trying my best blogging or making hampers to get money for you both.

I have to admit, I have eaten your chocolates/cake and sweets in the kitchen!
Oops! Sorry girls.

Mia. Mammy hates doing homework with you.
Only because I tell you how to do it and you honestly think I am wrong and you are right {even though you are totally wrong! haha}

Mammy love kissing you both goodnight before she goes to bed
Oh and sometimes poking you in the nose and face, just to annoy you!
 
Mammy loves you both lots!
Please don't grow to quick :)


Becoming a parent you don't realise how many appointments your child actually needs. From eye tests to vaccinations and health visitor appointments. We all want the best for our children now and for the future so it's our job to go to these important appointments as it will benefit for the future.

Eye Tests
I didn't know up until a few weeks ago that children get tested for vision in school. There is nothing wrong to do an appointment with your local opticians though, just in case. It's was really interesting to read more about optical express and the history about it. It also got me thinking that it's not only adults who need eye testing.

Dentist
Some fear the dentist and some don't mind it. The sooner you go, the better - think! Elliw and Mia are due for their appointments soon. Teeth are really important to look after, especially now that they are young it's the best time to start.

Health Visitor Appointments
HV's are there to help us. Some will say different. But they have always helped me with any questions I've asked and if I need advice with anything. I personally try my best to go to any appointments related to the HV. To check where my child's development is at, and any vaccinations if needed.

Is there any other appointments you need to take your child too?
Anyone who knows me, they will know that I always take my camera everywhere with me. Whether it's my iPhone or one of my cameras. I love taking photos of stunning views, flowers and capturing photos of my girls, family and friends.

Every Friday until Monday I will be hosting a photography linky. As you've probably noticed by the name of this post, I have named it 'ffotograffiaeth / photography linky'. If you have read my header and my 'about' page then you may know that i live in Wales and i recently wrote a post about why i chose Welsh as first language for my girls.

I've always wanted to do a photo/photography linky but there are so many good ones out there so i have been trying to think of something different. I think the name of this linky makes it different because it's welsh but also you can add different posts {which you can read lower down the post}.
 
Ffotograffiaeth in english is Photography.
 
What kind of posts is allowed?
Anything to do with photography.
If you've had a day out /holiday/weekend away and photos in the post.
Any tips and advice about photography.
Your favourite photos of the week.
Old and new posts are allowed.
 
This linky is not just for the welsh people btw! It's for everyone! :)
 
The boring but simple rules.
1. No more than two posts per week.
2. Linky is open Friday mornings until Monday 11.55pm.
3. Please visit and comment on atleast 2 other posts {when you can}.
4. Would really appreciate if you could put the badge at the end of your post {or a link} or anywhere on your blog.
5. No rude images.
6. No linky's. No reviews and No giveaways.
7. Only posts related to photos/photography allowed please.
 
Feel free to tweet your post on twitter and hashtag #ffotolinky and remember to include my twitter @lifeasmumblog - so I can re-tweet you!
 
Instagram - There will be an Instagram page very soon where I link up my favourite photos of the week. This will happen once more people know about the linky. For now, post your photo{s} and hashtag #ffotolinky and myself lifeasmumblog_SW , I will re-post your photo on my Instagram.
 
Photo Of The Week.
I will choose my photo{s} of the week, every week. I will also link your blog underneath the photo{s}! Good luck.
 
Linky starts 3rd July! Hope you all link up!
Looking forward to reading your photography advice and tips, and also looking forward to seeing all your photos!
 
Edrych ymlaen gweld llynia chi I gyd.
 
Thank you / Diolch.
 

 


 
I've tried to take a few photos of myself with the girls the past month. We've had quite a busy month and we have another busy month ahead of us too! Writing this has made me think that we are due another family photo. I am sure the last one we did was Christmas time and that was a selfie! Usually we do it on a timer so it's a clearer photo, so it's just the matter of convincing Daddy to come into the photo! We will see...

Me and the girls had a lovely walk after picking Mia up from school. The sun was shining and it was too hot for long sleeves! So I wore my Kimono I originally bought for Thailand. I hate showing my arms in public so I was lucky enough that the Kimono was light enough to wear on this Summer's day. I took the girls to the park and we met my friend and her two sons. They all played really nicely together whilst me and my friend had a chat and a big catch up.
 
 Daddy was working late one evening so I decided instead of waiting late for Daddy to come back, I would put both girls to bed. Usually Daddy puts Elliw to bed and I put Mia to bed. Even though I do put both girls to bed often because Daddy is too tired or cooking or working. Both girls were well behaved and I took this chance to have a funny evening with them. We read a story and took selfies just like above!

Anyone who knows my girls, they know they can be right posers... just like their mum... I guess...
haha! The photo of me and Elliw was taken when Mia was in school and the ones of me and Mia were taken last Monday. Daddy had taken Elliw with him to Manchester Aiport to pick his parents up, so I decided to pick Mia up from school early {same time as Elliw} and we had a lovely mother-and-daughter bonding time. Something I don't usually get with Mia. It was really relaxed and I managed to get a lot of things done... and photos with a selfie stick too!
You may have read my last weight loss update. I said I would update you all every week but in all honesty I went against the idea of updating every week. In that first week I gained. Not a lot but I still gained. The second week I lost 3lbs! YES! 3lbs! I was over the moon. I was happy. Aswell as loosing 3lbs, I lost inches too. I then, gained 6lbs. I feel sick. I am devastated.

The week I lost
I was on plan 100%. In fact, I wasn't 100% with Slimming World, I just chose the right things. I stayed under 1600 calories a day. Some days less than 1500, but the thing was, I wasn't hungry. I never left my self hungry. I had my five-a-day. I ate healthily and I even enjoyed a cup of tea and American pancakes in wetherspoons TWICE that week! I took the calories from the menu for them and I still stuck under 1700 calories in those days. Some days I would of had a bigger lunch and a smaller tea. I stopped snacking in the evenings and if I fancied something then I would have just had a yoghurt and a fruit. I also drank a lot more and the main thing that put me in a good mood was I was doing my home workouts. I lost 3lbs and I lost inches. I was happy. I went down to 15 stone 3.5lbs.

The week I gained
The day I weighed and lost 3lbs, I went out in the afternoon for a few drinks then I had a night out with friends that night. I ate a kebab later on that night along with all the jaggerbombs and alcohol I had. Of course, I was hungover the following morning. I had a mcdonalds breakfast, a kebab for lunch {did not eat all of it though!} and I also had fatty things for the rest of the day. I didn't feel right for a good few days. I ate whatever I wanted and didn't exercise much either. I didn't feel good. I felt horrible. I gained 6lbs. Was all the wrong foods worth it? Not at all. Not to be 15 stone 8 3/4lbs.

What I will do differently this week
When I woke up this morning, something clicked. I stood in the mirror and I had tears in my eyes. My body is disgusting and my body is not me. Today {Sunday} is the day I change and go back to that week I lost 3lbs. I am aiming for 4lbs loss this week. So far I have done fine, but it is only 11.15am! But I am determined to stick under 1600 calories a day. Choose the right foods and not to be to obsessed either. I want to go out for more {and longer} walks like I did and start working out at home again. I want to feel good and I want to loose this week!

I can't promise that I will update again next week, but I will try. If I feel like I want to then I will. If you want to see how I do then you can follow me on my Instagram account lifeasmumblog_SW.

But otherwise, I will update you all soon.
 

{Mia did me so proud, in her school sports day}
 

Hi everyone. I hope you've all had a fantastic week! I loved reading all your posts and guess what?! We had a record!!! YES!! Let's hope for more fab posts again this week. I'm sorry I haven't commented on some posts, but I read all of them. I've just been so busy this week and not been feeling 100% but I promise to comment on all posts next week!

So here is WEEK 9!

P.S. I am looking for someone to co-host this linky with me, if anyone is interested then feel free to e-mail me bethmiaelliw@outlook.com !!

#justanotherlinky is pretty simple.
 
- Link up to THREE posts a week.
- Old and/or New posts welcome.
- Link up ANY post.
- Review & giveaways are welcome too.
 
 
These are just a few simple rules -
 
- Comment atleast 2 or more posts. (After all, this is what linky's are all about!)
- Grab the badge below and put it on the end of your post (or just a link if you prefer)
- Tweet your post and link #justanotherlinky and Twitter acc is @lifeasmumblog, I will RT.
- When linking up to my linky you are giving permission for me to copy a photo from your blog, if you are featured in next weeks post.
 
This linky will be open every Sunday until Thursday 11.59PM.
SINCE I STARTED LINKY LATE THIS WEEK. THE LINKY WILL BE OPEN FROM MONDAY UNTIL SATURDAY 9PM!!!
I will choose a favourite post every week and feature it on the following week's linky post.
 
 
** FEATURED POST **

My Featured Post this week is from sixdegreesofharmony

 
------------
 
 
 ** GRAB THE BADGE **
 
 


 


This post will probably apply more to people who are thinking about starting a Blog or newly-bloggers. I still think I am quite 'new' as my Blog is only just over 2 years old, so I am still in the early stages but I have learnt a lot about blogging and being in the 'blogging world' so I thought I would share some of opinions and experience with you all.

WHAT KIND OF BLOGGER ARE YOU?
Before you even start a Blog you need to think about, what kind of blogger are you? As you know, I am a Parenting and Lifestyle Blogger. But I also blog a little bit about home interiors, food, weight loss and fashion too. I blog about my interests in life. There are many kinds of bloggers out there, such as, Fashion, Food, Travel, Parenting, Pregnancy, Home-schooling and so much more.

YOUR BLOG'S NAME.
Once you have figured out what kind of blog you are going to have you need to start thinking about the name of your blog. My blog is called Life-As-Mum. It took me a while to think about but it fitted me perfectly because I knew my blog was going to be about parenting and my family life.
When you choose a name for your blog you need to think of other things too -
  • Does anyone else have the same name? Or similar?
  • Is it easy to remember?
  • Does it fit you as a person?
  • Will it make sense in a few years time?
Choosing your blog's name can take quite a while or it can pretty quick. You need to look into the future. For example; If you have children. Don't put their ages or names in the blog name as they are going to be a different age the following year, and you never know what the future holds {your family may grow!}. That is just one sample.

'FREE' THINGS DON'T COME FOR 'FREE'
When I receive items to review, people ask me where did I get them from and when I tell them, they think it's easy to receive 'free' things. If you're not a Blogger then you won't understand that to get the privilege to review products from great companies is hard work. You need to blog on a regular basis, you need to gain traffic. It's not the matter of making a blog and the companies send you things out. The longer you blog the more you will realise that receiving products to review is 'work'. Honestly? There is no point in blogging if you are just doing it to review products. If your heart isn't in to blogging, then you're not going to get very far.

POST DAILY/WEEKLY
I schedule a lot of posts, sometimes I have written posts for the whole of next month. To gain more readers you need to update your blog and write atleast twice or three a week {my opinion}. I have stopped reading some blogs because they only updated their blog {new posts} about once or twice a fortnight. But everyone is different.

GETTING PAID
Again, just like reviewing products, you need to work hard to get to this stage. Even harder than reviewing products {my opinion}. Bloggers can get paid £30 - £150+ for sponsored posts, guest posts and advertising. It's not easy work writing sponsored posts. A lot of people ask 'how do you make money?' my answer is 'I work hard on my blog'. A lot of people don't realise that you may even have to wait a year until you get your first paid post. It takes a lot of hard work.

COMMUNICATE
I try my best to reply to comments on my posts. It's always a good idea to interact with your readers. Let them know you a little more. Join linky's and comment on other blogs. Get known!

BE HONEST, BE YOU!
People don't want to know a 'fake' person. People want to read a blog of an honest person. Write about your bad confessions or how you feel. Tell us. Write for you. Don't write for anyone else. Of course you are writing for other people to read and help {if writing advice} but you write how you want and write about what you want. I struggle with explaining things and I struggle with words. I don't know most of these 'posh' words people use on their blogs. I have tried learning and I have thought about just looking through a theasarus and using these other words but I decided not too because I wouldn't understand it. Someone has commented on the way I write, I nearly quit blogging because of them. But do you know what? I won't change the way I write things. Nobody should.
So just be YOU!

WE ALL STARTED SOMEWHERE
There are newly-bloggers, there are bloggers and then there are successful bloggers! If your new then don't compare your blog and pageviews with someone with a lot more experience than you. There are a lot of successful bloggers out there who think they are better than everyone else, who take blogging a little bit too seriously. As in too seriously, I mean, they forget where they started. If you work hard on your blog you will be a successful blogger but we are all unique. No blog is the same.

BLOGGERS MIND
Once you start blogging you might get the 'bloggers mind'! That is when you think about posts most days {maybe all day}. You may see something out and think 'oh I can blog about that'. Most of things you forget once you reach your laptop/computer but trust me! you'll be thinking of a lot of posts on days out or even a walk to the shop! It can get pretty annoying at times though.

Have you got anything to tell newly-bloggers?

Just a few weeks ago I started thinking about Childcare settings. My first job was working in a Nursery looking after children aged 3 months - 12 years. Mia was with me so I have been quite lucky with not having to try find a nursery for her to go to whilst I worked.

When I started my previous job as an after-school play worker last year I had too choose a nursery for Elliw. Again, Mia was in the club with me, Elliw was too young. Honestly, I had no choice on which Nursery to put Elliw in seeing as we only have one nursery in our village. I was a little bit nervous putting her in there because I am not keen on someone who works there, but hey! I needed my job and there were other people there in the nursery too who was bound to look after her good. Elliw loved it there so I was happy. Although, that woman who works there never communicated with me at all. Still doesn't.

Right, so another Nursery in a town near me pretty much shocked me a few weeks ago. I was walking through town one mid-morning and there was about 5 nursery nurses/assistants there. Some holding childrens hands/reigns and some pushing prams. So then, it sounds like they are going for a walk right? Or maybe popping to a shop to get some bread or something for the nursery? Maybe the manager asked them to go fetch something {even though they should be stocked up anyway!}. But no. They were shopping. I saw them in one shop, then the next thing I saw two workers going into New Look and the rest standing outside the shop chatting away whilst the children/toddlers and babies were waiting {standing and sitting in their prams}. To me, this is wrong. If I pay a childcare to look after my child, I do not expect them to go clothes shopping during work whilst looking after my child!

When I used to work in a nursery we used to take the children for walks, and once we went into a vegetable and fruit market kind of shop because we wanted more fruit as we were going to do activities for the kids that afternoon. We also took them for walks to a race track where they can all stretch their legs and run about. We took them out and they had fun!

We are parents. We know children and babies DON'T have fun shopping. Right? So why are these childcare workers taking these kids out shopping? But hold on a second...

This is the THIRD time I have seen them do this.

YES! THE THIRD TIME!

I find it pretty shocking. The nursery costs roughly £35 - £37 PER DAY!

If I was to pay that much for my child to go to a nursery I expect them to -
  • Take good care of my child.
  • Write down about my child's day.
  • Tell me anything important when I drop off or pick my child.
  • Carry on the routine I have set from home.
  • Take them out on day trips.
  • Take them out to the park or for a good walk where they run around.
  • Let them have fun.
  • Do activities with the children.
Am I wrong to be so wound up by this? I'd love to know your opinions.
Travelling abroad with children can be nerve-racking but there are ways to make your travels stress-free. When we got told we were going to Thailand the first thing that I thought about was the flight. I worry about a lot of things and I really did worry about the flight. Knowing that we had to travel by car first to the airport which took us around 1 hour 30 minutes. The flight took 12-13 hours with a 2 hour wait in Abu Dhabi airport, which had no seats and we were stood in the same place for an hour. We reached Bangkok airport and we had another 2 hour drive to get to the house. We had to repeat all of this on our way back home too. But there was a 2 hour delay on the flight from Abu Dhabi and the flight was about 2 or 3 hours extra on top of the delay.

Shockingly, my girls were very well behaved. Elliw only had one tantrum and that was because she didn't want to sit down. This was on the flight from Abu Dhabi to go back home. People were trying to sleep but Elliw kept them up for about 20 minutes with her screaming. That was the only stressfull time with her temper. Otherwise the other stress times was when we were over tired and I was miserable and just want to go to bed.

Bring Wheels!
Bringing a pram was a life savour! We also brought a trunki with us. One child was on the trunki and the other was in the pram. Luckily we didn't have to get the pram in abu Dhabi because they already had some in the airport, they were pretty nice too push too. I would have gone insane if I hadn't brought a pram.

Safety
Even though I had never been to airports before, I had a feeling they were going to be very busy. I was worried about how was I to make sure they were by my side at all times? Luckily there was 4 adults so atleast one of us had an eye on them at all times. A pram was a perfect for safety. We knew where they were! The trunki was another good idea for safety too. I did bring some wrist reigns but they wouldn't wear them. Another thing I would do next time is make them wear tag bracelets with their name and my phone number, just incase they get lost (but I hope that never happens *touch wood*).

Comfort
If you are on a long flight then your child is more than likely to fall asleep. If they have a comfort blanket or teddy then remember to bring it! It really helped Elliw that I brought her blankey with us on the plane. I'm not sure if she would of fallen asleep so quick if I forgot it.

Entertainment.
I had filled their hand luggage with books, teddies, toy figures, colouring books, crayons and iPad. Thinking they would get very bored. But we were very lucky with this. They took in turns with the iPad. They watched TV and films. They were given a childrens pack from the people on the planes which was full of game cards, crayons and colouring books so I didn't have to take anything from their luggage. But I am glad I had those extra things in the bag, just incase! It kept my mind at ease knowing I had more things in the bag if they got bored.

Be calm
I think if your calm then the whole situation will be calm. Try and be excited that you are nearly where you want to be. Getting too stressed in a situation will just make the whole situation much more stressful than it should be.

Food
When booking, make sure to check if there is food on the plane. The last thing you want is a child screaming and crying because they are hungry. You could even check this whilst you check in. If they don't provide food then you could buy some snacks and meals from the shops before boarding.
 
Do you have any travelling tips whilst travelling with children?
Another year has gone! This time I brought my camera with me. But typical, the battery went flat but I did manage to get a few good photos of her. She did 3 races and she came 3rd in running and 3rd in the bean bag race {where you have the bean bag on top of your head!}. She was also close in coming 3rd with the egg and spoon race. The Sports Day was supposed to be about 3 weeks ago but they held it off until now because of the weather. It's a shame they didn't do it last week because it was so nice but luckily, the weather today was pretty warm and cool for them. I was really worried bringing Elliw with me. But she was good as gold. She really did behave. For the first hour she was sitting down on the chair watching and then played on my phone for around 10 minutes. Then she found a few of her friends and played around the yard with them, which included - running, jumping, chasing and laughing!

It is really hard to think that this time next year I will be going to Sports Day to watch both girls take part. How nuts is that? My two girls are growing up just a little bit too quickly for my likening! But they make me feel so proud of them. Mia has always been the sporty type. She loves running, jumping and doing handstands.

I'm not too sure how Elliw will be doing Sports day but if she is anything like how she is now then she will more than likely run the other direction and start running before the teachers says 'GO!' ha ha! But no, on a serious note.. I can't wait.




Anyone who knows me, they know I am forever taking photos. Whether it is using my phone or using my camera I have always got one of them with me wherever I go. I tend to take my camera out if I am going out for a long walk with the girls or a picnic etc. Otherwise I will have my phone for taking photos.

I am the kind of person who likes the 'old fashions photo albums'. I've got 100's of photos printed out and I have 1000's left to do. One day it WILL be done! I have started looking at photo books and I've made a photobook ready for someone special on their birthday.

I was recently contacted by Imprify to review one of their photobooks. I had to say yes! But what was different to this company? Imprify is a free app that iOS and Android users can use to make their book on their phone from using their photos on their phone. The one thing I never do is download my photos of my phone onto my laptop {only by social media}. So I thought I'd try it out. I was very pleased with the results.


The app was extremely easy to use. I had finished making my photo book in less than 5 minutes. You can also personalise you photo book by adding text but I decided not to do this. I chose some natural funny photos for my photo book. Something nice and funny to look back at when the girls are older.

The 18cm x 18cm Photobook was delivered within 3 days! The quality of the book is fantastic. You can also share your photobook on social media for free. If you are like me and love taking photos with your mobile phone and camera then this may be a great app for you to have on your phone. It can also be a great gift for someone who loves looking at photos.


You can find the link to download your Imprify App here.

You can purchase this Imprify Photobook for only 19.90euros.


* I was given an Imprify Photobook free of charge, in return of an honest review. All opinions and images are my own.

When travelling on a plane for such a long distance, it sure can get pretty boring and very uncomfortable {unless you are first class, I guess!}. My first holiday was to Thailand. It was a very long flight but we were lucky enough to have TV's on the back of the headrests and we were given a pillow to use too. The pillow they gave you were of course, a very cheap material. I really regretted not buying my own travelling pillow but I know next time.


Recently I was contacted to do a review of Tempur Travel Pillow. I wish I was contacted before I travelled but I know next time I can deffintley bring this with me. My partners parents were going back to Thailand again and the pillow arrived on the morning they were leaving so I leant the pillow to them. It's been about 3 weeks now but I wanted to know what they thought of the pillow and I wanted to do a bit more of research of the pillow.

The Tempur Travel Pillow is priced at £51.99 {was £64.99}. The Travel Pillow is a memory foam pillow with a soft fabric removable cover which you can wash. The pillow is sized 31cm X 25cm X 10/7cm. It also comes with a travel bag which compresses the pillow volume by 70% when it is packed away. This makes it perfect size for packing it into your suitcase or even your hand luggage.

In all honesty, I do think it is quite expensive for a travelling pillow. My partners mother who used it whilst she travelled said "It was pretty weird to get used to, but it was really comfortable".
I think this travelling pillow will do great for long car journeys too. I always get sleepy if I have been in the car for a long period of time {especially a good few hours!} so I think this pillow will be great to use.


* I was given this Tempur Travel Pillow free of charge in return of an honest review. All opinions and images are my own.
I fell pregnant at the age of 16. I was young and yes I was pretty immature too. Before I fell pregnant I used to visit my friends in the next town, get a late bus back home. I used to have a drink and get drunk sometimes. I was enjoying my life. Then one day, two lines came up on a pregnancy test. I was 7 weeks pregnant. I was scared, well I was petrified. How could a 16 year old be a good mother? How could I cope? I was so young. I was a teenager for god's sake, I hadn't even lived my life yet. I stepped up and I changed. I had to grow much quicker than my friends as I was the only one out of my friends who was pregnant.

Through my pregnancy I lost a lot of friends. They couldn't understand why I couldn't be bothered to go on the bus to see them every day. They couldn't understand why I just wanted to stay at home and be lazy. The last 10 weeks (ish) I actually saw none of my friends, which is pretty disappointing looking back. I had a pregnancy condition called Obstetric Cholestasis so I was pretty much feeling sorry for myself.

When Mia was born my life did change. It changed for the better. It was hard but really worth it. I did find a job when Mia was 5 months old and I worked there for just over 2 years.

How was my life before parenting?
- I was able to go out and come back home anytime.
- I could sit at the back of the bus with no problems.
- I had no responsibilities.
- I had no one looking up to me as a role model.
- I could go drinking/partying any night and even in the day.
- I had free/spare time.
- I could do things when I want and how I wanted.

When you're a parent there are so many things we have to change and sacrifice. I would do absoloutley anything for my girls. They are my world and I am their world. They look up to me and if I am honest they are the ones who have made me who I am today.

I really can't remember much before I had Mia. Only school memories and then I only fell pregnant a year after I left school. I didn't get that teenage life that most people had and I do look back sometimes and wish I did but then yet again, I am so glad my life has turned out the way it has. I still try and go out when I can but if I am slowly not even enjoying going out drinking anymore. I probably go once ever few months. Having a child young you have to force yourself to grow up and be more mature than most people your age.

My life as a parent is totally different than before i was a parent. I can't drop everything and just go off somewhere, i have to work around my girls and work around their routine. Some friends don't understand that i will have to come back home early from a night out if my child is unwell or if my child is unwell before i go out then i would have to cancel our plans (now a lot of non-parent friends do NOT understand that!).

Some people who are not parents don't understand that we have to buy things for our children. We can't use our last pennies on going out with friends just to keep them happy. We would rather keep our children happy. Us parents don't always want to go on a night out every weekend. We much prefer an evening full of cuddles with the kids and a quiet evening with the kids in bed.

We have had to change dirty stinking nappies, sometimes even got a bit of poo on our hands or even shot at us whilst changing! We've had sick down our tops or even in our mouths (that has happened to me!). Our bags aren't full of make-up for re-touches through the day, a mum's bag is packed with spare nappies, bottles, dummies and wet wipes!

If we have made plans and my child won't settle at bedtime then yes, you will have to wait for me. I don't go out until my kids are settled in bed. If my friends don't understand that then i will not go out and i will just cancel the plans all together. My child comes first.


Growing up without a mother figure in my life I knew that once I had children, I knew the wrong and right ways of being a Mother. The biggest thing I wanted to do was to make memories with my girls. I want them to turn round to me one day "do you remember that day when..." and remembering that they enjoyed it.

I don't have great or many memories with my own mother. I remember the first time I ever went clothes shopping with her and that was when I was 16 years old. I remember she told me I could have something that didn't cost more than £5 because that's all she had. We went to about 3 shops. Another memory that stands out and a memory that I enjoyed was the Summers we went down the river and had a BBQ. I really enjoyed those times. She was married at that time. She still wasn't a great mother, but she was a little bit better than she was. She still didn't keep to promises and still let me down but we did do more things, taking my brothers and sister to the park but after the marriage broke, it went back down hill again. It felt she had to have a man in her life and if she didn't then she was and is just pretty useless.

The main memories that live with me is the time I really needed to talk to someone but she said 'don't tell me your problems because I have some of my own' and the times she promised to take us places, and never did. I don't want my girls to have memories like this. I want them to have good memories.


This is the main reason why I love going out with my girls and partner as a family. I love spending time with mine and my partners family. So we all have lovely memories to look back on. I love going for walks and days out. I love going on holiday, even if its just for a couple of days. Even indoor activities or outside in the garden. Anything is a memory right.

If you know me personally, you will know that anywhere I go I always take my camera or my iPhone to take photos. I love taking photos to capture those lovely moments and look back on them in a few months or years time.

Being a parent to one child is easier than being a parent to multiple children. Having my second daughter changed my life, again. Changed my routine, changed my feelings, changed the way I thought of certain things and just changed pretty much everything. It may not always be like that for everyone though. Everyone goes through different things. I'm going to write to you about my experience of being a mother to one child compared to being a mother of two.

Sleep

1st; Mia started sleep all night from the age of 3 months old. The only way I could get her to sleep was to lie next to her and she would hold my little finger as a comfort and then slide away quietly when she was fast asleep. She slept in bed with me which I stopped when she was around 7 months old. She then woke up between 1am and 3am every night to get into bed with me {which I stupidly allowed}. She stopped waking up in the middle of the night when she was around 2 years old. Luckily, just before Elliw was born. She now sleeps all night through. She goes to bed between 6.30pm and 7pm and wakes up between 7am and 8am.

2nd; Elliw had her first full night sleep at 7 months old. She suffered with Colic for a good few weeks so she would non stop cry {scream} from 10pm until 1am every single night until Colic stopped. She would wake up at least once after for a bottle. After the Colic stopped she would wake up about 2 or 3 times a night. She went around 2 months or so with sleep all night every night but now for the past year or so she has been waking up at least once or twice a night. I get the odd night where she will sleep all night but not often. She will go to bed the same time as Mia but she will wake up between 6am and 7am.

I am really lucky that they both go to bed pretty early for me and they will settle. For over a year Elliw would end up sleeping on the floor and never settle in her bed {of course we would take her back to bed before we went to bed ourselves} But for the past month or so she has been settling straight in her bed! YAY!



Behaviour

1st: Mia's behaviour was just normal. She would have her odd tantrums. She hated going into the pram and I would really struggle getting her in but she wasn't old enough to walk properly or far as at the time I used to walk to town most days {when I was off work}. At one point after Elliw was born Mia went through a horrible stage/phase. Out of nowhere {and most days} she would happily pinch, kick, hit, punch, slap and scream at me. It was really hard. Luckily, it was only a phase and she has not done any of those to me for a long time now. Mia's behaviour hasn't really gotten worse but her attitude, sulks and tantrums have gotten harder to handle. I do say she is Five turning on Fifteen! If she is by herself she is fantastic, although she can talk and talk {sometimes does my head in!} but that is Mia for you!

2nd; Unfortunately at the time when Mia was hitting {battering me!} most days, Elliw was at the stage where she picked up on things. Of course there was a few rows and shouting when Mia was doing it as I just did not know what to do. I didn't know how to stop her {she was so strong}. Elliw went through a very long phase of hitting, punching and kicking me and Mia. She would happily just run over to Mia and push her along with some punches, kicks and hair grabbing. Luckily she has stopped that but not 100% she will still do this sometimes. She still shouts, and will moan at pretty much anything that she wants. We have taught her and changed her a lot with learning her that she can't get everything she wants there and then. She still has her tantrums, obviously! She is a toddler/child at the end of the day right? When she is well behaved then she is VERY well behaved.



Outings

1st; Mia was always the daring little girl. I would put reigns on her when she started to learn to walk. I remember taking her around where I lived at the time so she could learn to walk a bit better {it helped!}. She would happily run off and be a wild child. Once I actually did loose her in a shop. Elliw was pretty young at this stage. My heart was racing. It was so scary. The manager of the shop started looking around and even going out of the shop too look too. Eventually we found her. She was happily hiding under the rail of knickers and bra's! We went to another shop not long after, she happily ran off again! We found her quicker this time though. It was one of the first times I let her walk in town without a pram. Nowm, Mia will listen to me if I tell her to stop but if she is with some friends she does tend to show off {as kids do!}.

2nd; Elliw wouldn't walk on grass or concrete until after 18 months old. She would scream the place down. I remember the first time she did it. Me and her Dad were over the moon and so happy {she had a lot of praise!}. Elliw has run off once but she thought she was playing hide and seek in a shop! Luckily the shop was pretty small and she has never done this again {thank god!}. Elliw is pretty good at holding my hand pretty much everywhere we go! Even if I tell her she can go running somewhere, she would much prefer to hold my hand. So again, I am quite lucky.

Potty/Toilet Training

1st; I started Mia potty training around 2 years old if I remember rightly. She started off ok but then all of a sudden I had to start changing her atleast 8 or 10 times a day. I spend so much money on knickers as I didn't want to go a step back by putting nappies on her. She got referred to a paeditritian for about 6 months then she got put under the Constipation Clinic. She constantly soiled her knickers throughout the day, she still does it now but not half as much as what she used to. She will be on movicol medication for long-term.

2nd; Elliw was pretty easy potty training. In fact she was petrified of the potty so I started her straight on the toilet. Which was pretty hard work because she had always filled her nappy within an hour of a clean nappy so I knew she would be constantly going to the toilet. But she did it. The first time round I think we pushed her to quickly and she wasn't ready. We started last Summer {2014} and there we go! She has been toilet trained ever since. If I remember rightly it only took her a few days to be trained.



Development

1st; Mia's always been pretty clever for her age. I've always been told she was always ahead of her age. She can speak two languages {English & Welsh}. She understood Welsh better but she is slowly starting to understand English better now too. She started walking unsupported 2 weeks after her 1st birthday. She started to count 1 to 3 in welsh at a very early age as she was always with me when I would do her formula and I would always count each scoop to her so I think she learnt it from that. Her language is great for her age, she doesn't stop talking. Her maths and physical development is great for her age too.

2nd; Elliw has always been a little behind with her development. She didn't start walking until around 15 months old and would not step outside until 18 months old. She is only just starting to talk {a little bit}. Although her understanding is great and right for her age, her speech isn't. She is under Speech Therapy and we are learning her more at home too so hopefully soon she will catch up but I am not rushing her.

I do find I have been pretty laid back with the second child. With your first, it's your first little baby. It's all new to you. When your second comes along, don't get me wrong obviously they mean the world to you just as much as your first but honestly, I don't remember when Elliw sat up or rolled over or crawled. I remember rough dates but not exactly when. With your first child your wary about everything they do but your more laid back with the second.

Having two children has also taught me that every child is completely different. To be fair Mia was a very easy baby. Elliw was total opposite! It's mad how different they are even though they are sisters.

Do you have two or more children?
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