Holiday essentials

We’re just back from a lovely 10 days in Majorca and while nothing is really ‘essential’ on holiday other than sunshine and relaxation, I’ve complied a list of the things that can be really helpful while you’re away!

Micro-scooters eazy cases

https://www.micro-scooters.co.uk/eazy-luggage.html?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIic2Hl8nf4gIV4ZPtCh1DAAQKEAAYASAAEgKk-fD_BwE

These ride on cases from micro- scooters were an absolute GAME CHANGER for us this holiday. The girls are 6 and 4 so too big for a pram but still get hot and tired on holiday. Back home I like them to walk as much as possible but on holiday having to carry them after a long day at the beach is not ideal.

These cases went EVERYWHERE with us on holiday. They were great in the airport but also we filled them with out shopping for our self catering holiday, took them with us to the beach and out in the evenings when we went for a walk. The girls loved them. I was very lucky to have been gifted them however I wouldn’t hesitate to buy them they honestly changed our holiday and allowed us to do so much more. You can remove the case and just have the ride on seat but the case was so handy for essentials that we generally left it on. They are £99 each and worth every single penny!

Slipfree uk pool and beach shoes

https://iloveslipfree.co.uk/collections/kids

These shoes are perfect for holidays! Not only do they stop slips around the pool but protect little toes from hot sand. I still spent every second shouting ‘don’t run’ at the pool but there was not even one little slide when wearing these. They also protect against burnt feet in the sun and helped grip on play equipment. My only regret is not getting myself a pair! They are brilliant! I was kindly gifted 2 pairs for the girls but again I definitely would buy these myself and I’m going to buy myself a pair for the next holiday we go on! You can twin with your kids! Prices start at £14.99 a pair

Beach powder sand remover

https://www.beachpowder.co.uk/

Anyone else love the beach but hate the kickoff from the kids when they’re covered in sand? Same!! But not anymore! So lucky to have been sent a beach powder and a beach powder shimmer to try on holiday. It’s a company from right here on the Isle of Man!! And it’s AMAZING!!

‘beachpowder is a brand new product which removes sand from the skin, leaving you silky-smooth and smelling fantastic. It’s talc-free, all-natural and safe for your skin and for the environment!

The subtle vanilla ice-cream scent is suitable for everyone – just sprinkle beachpowder onto towel-dried skin when you need to get rid of sand, then gently dust off with your hands.’

Honestly it’s like magic!! The girls Especially loved the shimmer powder which left a magical shimmer on their sand free skin! Prices start at £5.99 and a little goes a long way!

Nomnom kids pouches

https://nomnomkids.co.uk/

I’ve been a brand partner for a few years of nomnomkids and I really believe in their products. I love taking the snack bags away with us on holiday as they take up no room in your case unlike bulky plastic tubs and are great for taking food to the beach in or for using as a first aid kit or purse!!

You can use code BTF15 for 15% off orders.

Reusable bottles

I don’t like buying bottled water but on holiday go have no choice. I took our https://www.onegreenbottle.com/ bottles (gifted last year) and my https://hydratem8.co.uk/?gclid=EAIaIQobChMI9b6up9Df4gIVhr_tCh3Axwg8EAAYASAAEgJJs_D_BwE bottle to reduce plastic use by buying bigger bottles and filling them up

What are your holiday essentials?

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Gemini dairy free chocolate review 

Oh my word 😍😍
I was lucky to receive some Gemini dairy free chocolate for review and it’s DELISH 😍😍
Not only is it dairy free it is organic , vegan and handmade!! Wow!! 
Loads of different flavour combinations 😍

My fav so far is the hazelnut and sutana ✌🏻

Gemini handmade organic chocolate is packed with natures’s goodness, meltingly rich and delicious. Crafted from unroasted cocoa beans and crystallised nectar from Palmyra tree blossom it contains health promoting nutrients, antioxidants and vitamins, all in a bar that delivers award-winning flavour. Its characteristic bittersweet taste is irresistibly moreish and it comes in an ever-changing array of unique flavour combinations, mixing this special chocolate with natural organic fruits, nuts and infusions.
What more could you want? I’ve just been eating it from the bar but can’t wait to try it in baking xx
Go check them out!!
https://geminichocolate.com/shop/

Baby shower gift ideas 

Instagram is a treasure trove of amazing independent stores that offer practical but fun and amazing ideas for mums and dads to be!! Let’s face it, there’s only so many baby grows one kid needs, so how about treating mum and dad to a special little treat at the baby shower instead?  

So my super cool friend Tam @australian_dad has written a book called ‘becoming daddy’. It’s a perfect eye opener for a first time dad to be, packed full of facts, anecdotes and humour. It’s a guide to what will happen, how Tam coped with it and for you to think about how you will cope with things. It’s in no way a ‘YOU MUST DO THIS’ book it’s like a cheat book to dad life so nothing will come as unexpected 🙌🏻🙌🏻 (well some bits will but that’s life!!) 

Or how about this book for the mama to be ‘how to grow a baby and push it out’ by Clemmie Telford @mother_of_daughters – she’s a midwife and mum of 4 beautiful little girls so Experiances from both sides of the fan…….. errrrrr fence 😂😂 

What does a new mum need? SNACKS!! Get her some of these @nomnomkids reusable pouches and snack bags and not only can she keep them for when she’s weaning the baby, before that she can make her own healthy smoothies and keep a secret stash of healthy snacks near her for 3am cravings or close by if she’s feeding ☺️

Speaking of snacks – imagine a snack that’s delicious and looks amazing and that you can personalise?!! Well imagine no more, just head over to @ladybakewellpark and order the new parents some biscuits?!! If they already know the name, how about popping that on the biscuits? Or maybe get some in pink and blue if they’ve not found out? Or their fav song lyrics………. the possibilities are endless 💜

Just as tasty but healthy too are the amazing snacks from @skinnybakery 😍 packed full of healthy ingredients and posted straight to your door. Give these at the shower, or get them delivered to the parent’s door in the days after birth. It will defo be appreciated! 

And on the same thread – water water water!! Make sure she’s getting enough by buying her one of these @hydratem8 bottles 
 
These aren’t available yet but these lidded hot drink cups by @mother_pukka not only look amazing AND keep your coffee warm but you’ll also be supporting the very very serious campaign about getting flexible working hours for parents. What more could a mamma want?!! 

What does every mum to be and new mum need? COMFORT!! How Gorgeous is this snuggley cosy ‘girl gang’ jumper by @essexmama ? As you can see suitable with or without bump! I’ve just ordered a varsity collection jumper for myself 😍 cosy cosy cosy 

Dad’s need to be cosy too!! How about one of these ‘breaking dad’ sweaters for him? @parentapparel have some seriously funky designs for mama too such as their ‘gin & on it’ and ‘are we there yet?’ – something any parent can connect with I’m sure! I’m also waiting for their ‘mental wealth’ jumper to launch. 

And while we’re on clothing how cute are these matching ‘raising the future’ and ‘the future’ tops by @mre_soeur ? I love these!! Perfect parent and little apparel 😍😍

Keep on the twinning theme with these super cute ‘mama’ and ‘dada’ bracelets by the ridiculously cool @woodyandflorence . I had one of these bracelets and loved it. A perfect little present and one that won’t break the bank either. A perfect reminder of joining the best club in the world ❤️

If in doubt @annabelkarmel it!! Annabel has cook books for everything!!! How about a book for pregnant mamas? Or a book for busy mamas when the baby arrives? Or better still, buy the books yourself and give her an IOU at the shower for some healthy, home cooked meals delivered to her door when the baby gets here to save her a job 👌🏼

And for those healthy meals how about some @oogaababy products? Parents can use these when weaning but before that they are PERFECT for leftovers (they come with silicone lids) and you can bake in them too, cutting down on the washing up – what’s not to love?!! 💚

Memories 😍😍😍 now this isn’t technically an Instagram store but how about booking the new parents a photo shoot with a local photographer? A family shoot like local photographer @liamgilman did for my beautiful sister and her family? Or how about a newborn shoot? There’s nothing like those first few days of a baby’s life and capturing it on camera is priceless 👼🏼 

If you can’t resist treating the baby to something then how about some nursery sparkle? @sparklechildlondon have some unbelievably STUNNING things on offer! How about this sparkle cloud for the nursery? I bought my girls a sparkly crown and wand each and they truly are the most beautiful things I’ve seen! How about getting something for an older child instead? Kristal also makes superhero masks for boys too……… go and check her out, not only is her stuff beautiful but she’s a beautiful person so you’ll want to give her your money! ✨✨

More baby ideas from @porterandbramble ⭐️ what about a beautiful custom print for baby’s nursery? You want it and Megan will make it to a stunning quality. Be quick though as she’s currently cooking a custom order of her own so will be shut for a little while 👨‍👩‍👦‍👦

If you’re not sure what you want, then why not have a scan through @mackymoocreations and pick something up from there for the nursery wall? There’s so many cute and bright and beautiful designs I’m sure the only difficulty you’ll have is choosing only one 👌🏼

And lastly, how about getting a special present instead for a big brother or sister? These lovely designs for boys or girls (there’s lego crayons – need I say more??!!) are a sure win from @colormehappy_crayons . Why not get ‘brother’ or ‘sister’ in crayons, or their own name or fav shape? They could draw a masterpiece for their new little sibling 

Happy shopping guys!! I hope I’ve given you some great ideas 😍😍

The skinny bakery review 

I was so lucky and excited to receive an amazing box of goodies from the very lovely mariella @theskinnybakery this week. Absolutely devastated that the person who took my delivery didn’t refrigerate it like it tells you too so I lost some of the goodies – however the treats I did get were AMAZING 😍😍👌🏼👌🏼 these are still treats but healthier and packed with some lovely ingredients such as high protein tofu, yogurt, sweet potato, dates, coconut, oats, prunes and nuts. And there are dairy free, gluten free and vegan options too!! 

All ingredients are clearly detailed including calorific value which is great for a mum who is watching what she eats. 

Nationwide delivery (UK) is FREE if you order 5 or more products and you can also pick these tasty little treats up in various whole food markets and Selfridges too! 

I received 

SKINNY CHOCOLATE PEARLS – chocolate sponges piped with the skinny bakery’s signature tofu-chocolate frosting. (These were one of the products that need refrigerating so I didn’t get to try but they looked scrummy!!)

SKINNY CHOC CHIP COOKIES – these are dairy free and absolutely lovely dunked in a cup of tea! 

Skinny mini flapjacks – with dates and coconut these little bites are a really tasty treat. 


Skinny sweet potato brownies – sweet potato brownie bites, gluten and dairy free recipe, made with 46% sweet potato and sweetened with dates. These were another tub that should have been put straight in the fridge so I missed out. These looked and sounded SO GOOD as well. 


Skinny mini gingerbread men – I had to share these with the girls – so cute and they’re soft too unlike other gingerbread men. still a treat due to the sugar, but the girls loved them!! (As did I !!!) 


Skinny mini coconut bites – another one that should have been fridged that I didn’t get to taste and probably the one is have liked to try the most – These are vegan coconut balls with only 5 ingredients. No added sugar and wheat free. 


Thanks so much mariella your tasty products are delicious!! 

My weaning champions 

I’ve been meaning to do this blog post for ages to give a guide of the different things that are out there for baby feeding. I wish I’d had access to all this stuff the first time round weaning!! These are in no way ESSENTIALS as nothing is essential in weaning apart from food, time and patience!! But these things really will make your life easier if you have the chance to buy them………
  

1) IKEA Antilop high chair
Without question the best piece of advice given to me when I started weaning was to get this high chair!! The tray comes off for easy cleansing and even fits in a dish washer! There’s no padding where food can hide and rot and the shape makes your little sit up really straight for the best eating position…… Best of all it’s cheap as chips!!

http://m.ikea.com/gb/en/catalog/products/spr/29067293/

  
2) the food catcher 

Weaning is MESSY!! whether it’s baby led weaning, purees or a mix of the two – there’s gonna be mess!! I was lucky enough to be sent one of these mumma’s little helpers food catchers and it changed my life ha! Obviously it won’t stop the purposely launched at your head pieces of food, but the accidentally dropped or when a whole bowl of milk and cereal is tipped over it catches IT ALL!! Just scoop the mess out the bottom and wipe down or chuck in the washing machine – job done!! 

http://www.mummaslittlehelpers.com.au/

  
3) Instagram!!!
I wasn’t on IG the first time round and there was limited support on Facebook. What I needed was real mums and real recipes and real advice and real support – IG has it all!! There are SO many amazing parents that are cooking wholesome, healthy and exciting food for their kids that you’d never need another cookbook! I will do a post on IG stating all my favs so you can give them a follow 

  
4) Annabel karmel 
While Instagram is amazing, there is nothing like flicking through a cookbook full of amazing photos and tasty recipes. Annabel karmel has it all; from purees, to family meals to treats and snacks ……….. So many books to choose from but they’re all amazing. She’s a weaning legend! 

http://www.annabelkarmel.com/gb/

  

  
5) Baby led weaning cookbook
I take baby led to mean that baby shows me when she’s full. So be it feeding herself with finger foods or learning to use utensils or being spoon fed, I look for the clues as to when she’s had enough and don’t force more. The baby led weaning cook book has a bit at the start that explains what true baby led weaning is and is packed full of great meal ideas. 

http://www.rapleyweaning.com/blwbook.php

  
6) a food processor 
Any will do but my mum bought me this kenwood chef that is amazing. It’s a mixer and food processor too. Pricy, but my mums kenwood is still going nearly 50 years later (I swear I’m not joking). You don’t need one, a handheld blender will do but these make things so quick and easy, if you can get one, do!

http://www.kenwoodworld.com/uk/products/food-processors

  
7) nutribullet 
If you don’t have the spends for a food processor get a blender. I’ve recently got a nutribullet and I’m so impressed! I made carrot and orange juice for breakfast the other morning and I never would have been able to make the carrot into a juice in my food processor. Great for making hidden veg pasta sauces too!! 

https://www.buynutribullet.co.uk/

  
8) lillypots
I’ve never used this but I wish I’d known about them at the early stages of weaning. They’re amazing for defrosting and warming small portions of healthy homemade Frozen purees without a microwave. Just place over a pan of boiling water and voila!! 

http://www.lillypots.co.uk/

  
9) nomnomkids reusable pouches 
These pouches really are a game changer!! From making your own purees, to smoothies, soups, porridge…… The uses for these pouches are endless! You can even freeze them and pop in with the rest of your lunch to keep it cool in the summer and have a defrosted smoothie a few hours later! Honestly these pouches really have saved my life on more occasions than I care to remember. When you’ve got a tired hungry teething little baby or toddler these pouches will ensure you are able to get healthy wholesome yummy food in their tummy when their mouths are too sore to chew. 

http://nomnomkids.co.uk/

  
10) oogaa baby products
I love oogaa and I am really lucky to be a brand rep partner. I could do a whole post on oogaa in itself! Sturdy silicone products that don’t eeeeeekkkkkk crappy toxins into your baby’s food, that look great, wash well and YOU CAN BAKE IN!!! They are so cool and the spoons etc with the planes and truck details are a kiddies dream! They also stock mats and teethers but honestly my baby loves chewing on one of the spoons when there’s a pesky tooth on its way!! I managed to pick up a bowl and 2 spoons in TKMAXX right at the start of my second weaning journey and it became a firm favourite fast! 

http://www.oogaa.com/

  
11) nuby
Nuby make brilliant BPA free drinks bottles that all come apart for proper cleaning unlike some other brands. They are brilliant for the transition from bottle to cups and last forever!! Nuby also have some brilliant feeding utensils like their new sure-grip range of mats with divided sections for easy scooping without the plate moving for new little eaters. Their forks are great too! 

https://www.nuby.com/

  
12) doidy cups
Doidy cups are great for training littles to start drinking out of an open cup. They’re tilted so baby doesn’t have to negotiate too much tipping initially and let’s them get the hang of it with less mess. 

http://doidycups.com/

 
   
 

 
13) dipper spoons
I used dipper cutlery by mam to train baby to use cutlery. You dip it in the food and the food sticks rather than having to scoop – ace for a learner!! Numnum have brill ones too that friends have used.

http://www.mamonlineshop.com/

http://numnumbaby.us/

  
14) ice pop moulds
These are another perfect way to get fruit and veg into your littles and a saviour for poorly teething gums!! Make a specific flavour to freeze or use up leftover smoothies – these are brill! There’s lots of varieties on the market but I use Annabel karmel for Nuk ones and they are brill!! 

http://www.nuk.co.uk/product/annabel-karmel-by-nuk-ice-lolly-set/