Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Are You Ditching Jeans?

Well summer is supposedly here, I don't know about where everyone else is but here it's pretty dire. So it's back to jeans and hoodies for me and the kids, in fact this morning they went to nursery in wellies and waded through a huge puddle outside the doors!

A lot of people seem to be ditching the jeans for harem pants, capris and palazzo pants, they're still a staple in my wardrobe. If, like me, you refuse to get rid of your wardrobe staple, House of Fraser has put together a fantastic graphic that can help you choose the right style for your shape.

Friday, July 24, 2015

How I Made It Into Tots100's Top 50

So this week I found out I made into in the top 50 of Tots100. For anyone who isn't sure what this is, it's the chart for parent bloggers which has over 8000 blogs in it, so top 50 is pretty darn good. So today I thought I'd share how I did it.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

My Experience of Mark Warner Holidays' Childcare

I have now been fortunate to visit two Mark Warner resorts, once on an adult only trip and once with my family. During both trips I became aware of the incredible childcare Mark Warner offer and on our most recent week in Corsica my children had the chance to give their facilities a thorough test. Today I wanted to let you know how we found the Mark Warner childcare and what we made of the activities on offer.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Review: Mastering The Globber Scooter

For the last few weeks we have been trying out the new Free 2C Globber Scooter. The idea behind these innovative scooters is to help develop balance and aid young children to master a scooter using several features.

Friday, July 17, 2015

Your Youtube #32

Welcome back to my video link up, Your Youtube! Last week was a quiet one for those who linked up, but with it being summer everyone is nice and busy, including myself! The video of the week is from Jules at The Giggle Blog who really honestly shares a bit about her difficult journey to Baby G and thoughts on a second child.

Over to the linky - - please link up no more than two videos and try to watch at least the host video and the one previous to your own. Please like and comment on the videos you watch, I try my best to watch and comment on everyone's each week.

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Tuesday, July 14, 2015

A CFS Update

Today I've been reading back on some old blog posts and remembering my journey over the last couple of years with depression and chronic fatigue. It's so strange to read back and remember the days I wrote each post and the feelings. And it's interesting to see what a roller coaster it has been and how my mood went up and down.

Today has been a crap one. The children are in nursery and I have the day to myself, and if I am completely honest it's my favourite day of the week as I can do nothing without feeling guilty that the children are suffering from it. 

The last two weeks have seen me sleeping an incredible amount of hours in a day, though, and I'm really feeling low about it. And the housework is suffering and my husband is struggling. Today I dropped the children at nursery, wen back to bed and didn't get up until two. Two!! So I basically slept the day away, and probably could have stayed in bed longer too.

It's so tough to see the light at the end of such a long and dark tunnel and I'm fed up of feeling better and having hope, only for it to be dashed. It's day like this I wonder if things can ever change. I couldn't even be bothered to put a bra on for crying out loud!

My headaches are worse than ever at the moment, quite often I feel like my head is in a vice. I'm finding myself tripping over words and stammering and another pleasant side effect of it all is my left eye has started twitching. So I'm bra-less, makeup-less with a twitching eye. Goodness knows what the workers at nursery think when I drop the kids off on a morning!

It's all part and parcel of the joy that is chronic fatigue. I just wish it would let up a little and let me get back to enjoying my time with my children. Miss H starts school in September and I feel like all I've done is wish her young days away. Sometimes life just feels so bloody unfair.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Family Holidays to Corsica With Mark Warner (Part One)

family holidays to corsica with mark warner

Last year I was fortunate enough to win a blogger holiday to Rhodes with Mark Warner Holidays. It was an absolutely fantastic experience and my first taste of what Mark Warner offer as a holiday. So when an email pinged into my inbox one dreary Wednesday I was ecstatic to see we had been invited as a family for a week in Corsica with Mark Warner once more. Unfortunately Mr H couldn't take the time off work but after a difficult few years with my dad being ill it was a pleasure to be able to take my mum along in his place.

Friday, July 10, 2015

Your Youtube #31

Your Youtube is back and thrilled to be so! After Leyla from This Day I Love kindly hosted for me last week thanks to a last minute trip to Corsica, I am looking forward to diving back in and watching all your videos from last week's heat wave!

This week's featured video is from last week's co-host Leyla who has filmed a quick tour of her villa she was fortunate to win a trip to with James Villas. It looks beautiful!

Over to the linky - please link up no more than two videos and try to watch at least the host video and the one previous to your own. Please like and comment on the videos you watch, I try my best to watch and comment on everyone's each week.

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Friday, June 26, 2015

Your Youtube #29

Huge apologies for missing last week but in case you haven't seen I was at Britmums Live on Friday and Saturday! As for the previous weeks, there were some fab videos linked up so today's featured video is from Chantelle Hazelden who shares her library book haul, which is I think is such a great idea for a video. I really need to get to the library more with my two!

So on with the linky - please share up to two videos and then make sure to watch and like the two before yours. This linky only works if we help each other, so do be sure to share the love.

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Thursday, June 25, 2015

Britmums Live: A Video Round-Up

If you saw my post or any bloggers recently you won't have missed that the Britmums Live blogging conference took place last weekend. As a vlogger myself I decided this year to put the camera down and try to focus on enjoying it, however lots of others took to their iPhones, DSLR's and video cam's to share the day with everyone. Here is a round-up of the videos out there, so if you missed it or are feeling bit nostalgic about your time have a look at these:

Practically Perfect Mum filmed the Guinness World Record Attempt that took place. I missed this bit so it's great to watch what happened, it looked hilarious!

The Gibblets are a mum and dad team who create daily vlogs, so of course they had to film their time at Britmums Live. They have done a video for each day, here is their second installment with a quick shot of me to boot!

Amy from Fun Being Mum has shared her experience of the weekend, I love seeing other people's perspectives of the day and it looked like she had lots of fun.

The lovely ladies at My Two Mums are also daily vloggers and filmed both days. This is their day two, which I am also in (along with a sneaky shot of me behind Kirsty in the Embrace Happy session!), this video has a beautiful ending too so definitely have a look.

Nadine from Business Mum filmed the fantastic keynote from Deliciously Ella, it is quite long but do bare with it as there is a private interview Ella took part in with just five bloggers at the end, well worth watching!

Emma from Twin Mum and Dad has put together a photo collage of her time at Britmums and has some great shots in there.

Jess from Mrs Helicopter has created a slightly bonkers but very fun video along with Lady Emsy, have a look for lots of laughter and boob talk!

Lauren from Blogger Mummy Lauren filmed her day, starting at the airport! I really enjoyed watching her footage and take of her time there, she also has some lovely shots of her time in London.

Finally the Ginger Warrior's Britmums video is renowned now and doesn't disappoint. Full of energy and with lots of chat to different people and brands she really sums up the buzz at the event.

You can also check out Lisa at New Mum Online, Laura at Milk and Honey, Rocket and Bee and Jules from The Giggles Family later in the week for their instalments.

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Summer Finances!

Finally, the long cold winter months are a distant memory - thank goodness! Although I love nothing more than snuggling up with the children during the cold, dark winter nights, nothing compares to the welcome return of clear blue skies, longer days and the warmer weather.

The change of season also signals change in our home. From washing my windows free from those smear marks, to checking all of those overlooked surfaces that seem to gather incomprehensible amounts of dust, I love nothing more than welcoming the new season with a fresh, clean home.

But this year, alongside cleaning my home from top to bottom, I have challenged myself to give my finances a ‘spring clean’ too! It’s often a part of my life that gets overlooked - unintentionally of course. And I figure, if I can put so much effort into cleaning out my home, why can’t I do the same with my finances?

In fact, it was a topic that provoked much discussion discuss amongst my friends when we met for our weekly coffee, and we have all challenged ourselves to get our finances in order this year. But where to start? My friend told me about Mrs Moneypenny’s: Spring Clean Your Finances video (you may have seen her on channel 4’s Superscrimpers). She’s literally the guru of financial help and advice, and opened my eyes to how I could make substantial savings by making small yet significant changes to the way I look at my finances and manage my credit. Here are some tips I have picked up:

Invest in a notebook and write everything down
When you’re busy being a mum, it’s difficult to keep track of your finances. But before you can make positive changes to your financial framework, it’s important that you construct a list of every bank account, credit card, loan, and building society account that you own – this way you can identify ways of tidying up your finances. It may seem daunting at first, but it’s important that you take the time to understand how and where you can make positive changes for the future.

Do you have credit cards and store cards?
Over the years, I’ve used credits cards to purchase a variety of expensive items. From our new kitchen, car and sofa to holidays abroad, my credit card has always come in handy, especially as I have always been able to get good interest rates.

I don’t know about you, but time seems to fly by in our household and it’s sometimes difficult to keep track of when those interest rates run out, especially if you have more than one credit card. That’s why Mrs Moneypenny suggested writing each credit card down, and next to it recording when each rate runs out. This way you can identify the best approach to moving or clearing each balance.

If you do have a higher interest credit card, the Mrs Moneypenny video from Superscrimpers suggests moving the balance onto a card with a lower interest rate if you are not able to clear it straight away. But first, it’s a good idea to check your credit report to make sure everything is accurate and up to date and identify if there are any areas for improvement before you make an application. With services like Experian CreditExpert, you’ll also be able to get an idea of the types of cards you are likely to be accepted for.

Do you have more than one bank account?
One thing that I wasn’t aware of before, was that having lots of open current accounts could affect your credit score! If like me, you have bank accounts open that you barely use, the best option is to shut them down and use one account. I didn’t realise how much of a headache it was having more than one bank account before deciding to bank from one account. At the same time, it’s worth checking whether or not you are paying a monthly fee for your account. If you are, it is worthwhile shopping around to see if you can get a better deal!

*This is a featured post
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Monday, June 22, 2015

Britmums Live 2015 - My Third Year

Last weekend I attended the yearly blog conference, Britmums Live. For anyone who isn't aware it is the UK's largest parent blogger conference based in London and takes part over two days. It is attended by several hundred bloggers and there we get together, learn a bit and chat a bit more. For many is it the only time to see many of those we talk to online on a daily basis and it is also a sneaky break away from home and a chance to be ourselves for a couple of days.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Surviving A Blog Conference With Chronic Fatigue

This weekend sees the return of the renowned blogging conference Britmums Live, and for those of us in the blogging world with chronic illness, the anxiety will have well and truly set in. As much as we want to go to these events and even look forward to them, there is always that little nagging voice in the back of out heads wondering if we can do this, and if we are slightly crazy for trying.

In the two years since I was diagnosed with chronic fatigue I have attended six conferences, most of which were in London. Some I have come away from proud of myself for doing it, some having found some incredible support, and some crying my eyes out, completely overwhelmed and wondering why I bothered.

All ready to go
If you suffer with chronic illness you may be feeling similar to myself, but I'm here to tell you that I have done it and you can too. Here are a few of my suggestions for making your time away manageable and dare I say, enjoyable too!

Friday, June 12, 2015

Your Youtube #29

Welcome back to Your Youtube and week 29 of linking up your videos! The linky is slow growing and I'm really enjoying getting to knew all these new channels.

This week's featured video is from Chez Mummy who had some drama on the farm this week! Check it out below.

Over to the linky - please share up to two videos and then make sure to watch and like the two before yours. This linky only works if we help each other, so do be sure to share the love.

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Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Summer Giveaway With House of Fraser

Today I'm really pleased to be giving away a fantastic prize from the House of Fraser outdoor toy range. They have a huge selection of toys for the garden and now that summer may be slowly making its appearance, what better time to get some great buys?

For this giveaway House of Fraser have kindly offered this Bestway 8ft pool to one lucky reader! All you have to do it follow the Gleam widget below.

House of Fraser Giveaway

House of Fraser Giveaway

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