Teething HELL.

So I thought I'd experienced teething hell before but nuh uh. It would appear the molars are the worst ones to come through and for four weeks now I've been waiting impatiently for those bastards to cut.

Still no joy.

So my grouchy, restless, unusually bad tempered daughter has been a bit of a nightmare to say the least. Hardly any sleep (for me or her), lots of whining (both of us) and a shit load of wine (for me) and Calpol (her) is all that's going on right now.

And now we're on pox watch.

My brain is frazzled. I can't remember what it is I'm supposed to be doing. I cannot be bothered nor do I have the energy to participate in small talk with anybody. I'm in bitch mode for the majority of the day, if I roll my eyes anymore they'll fall out of my head and my nerves are shot to shit, again.

Lil still only has seven teeth in her gob. Seven. So we still have thirteen left to go. There are no words to describe how this makes me feel. None. So I'll just keep drinking these...





LOLLIBOP GIVEAWAY - CLOSED



MAMAS: Do you want to win a family pass for Lollibop?



If you didn't already know, Lollibop is the UK's biggest festival for under 10's held in Regents Park, London on 17/18/19th August.

Festival highlights, include The ‘LolliBop Live’ stage which plays host to some of the hottest names in kids entertainment with performances from the likes of the ZingZilla's, Jassa Aluwahlia (Art Attack) and The Mr Men & Little Miss Party Roadshow. TV favourites Dick and Dom will also take to the stage to entertain crowds with their unique blend of music and games.

Shrek the Musical will also make a special appearance (Sunday 19 only) and Moshi Monsters will also be on site, bringing the UK’s first Moshi Monsters Mash Up Tournament to Lollibop. 

Halfords are creating a bespoke Bike City, which will include a Wacky Races obstacle course for under 5’s, where children can be the first to try out a brand new range of Balance and Apollo kids bikes. For older kids, highlights include a BMX stunt display and demo area.

In the Lollipaladium, see the story of The Gruffalo brought to life on the stage with plenty of audience interaction and CBeebies favourite, Mister Maker will be on hand to demonstrate his unique arts and crafts skills.

The brand new life-size Transformers Optimus Prime Truck will also be at the three day event, giving fans the chance to get up and personal with this movie legend.

Other headline attractions include yoga sessions with Waybuloo, workshops by Horrible Histories, Roald Dahl Museum and Storytelling Centre, performances by 8ft Titan the Robot, an Alice In Wonderland tea party and a chance to meet ‘Tiny’, a 125 million years young dinosaur.





SO much fun to be had and all of the activities, stages and events are included in the entry ticket price, which start at £22 per person. For more information, including a full programme of events, visit www.lollibopfestival.com 

Lollibop and IOSWYT have teamed up to offer you the chance to win a family ticket. All you need to do is leave your name and email address or Twitter name below in the comment section (so I can let you know if you've won).  EASY AS THAT! A winner will be drawn on 6th July using random.org

Good luck and we hope to see you there!


Follow Lollibop on Twitter and Facebook


T's & C's:
A family pass is 4 tickets to the event and can be used on either Friday 17 August or Sunday 19 August.
The prize is non refundable and non exchangeable
No cash alternative will be offered
Travel is not included
Closing date Thursday 5th July 8pm
A winner will be selected using random.org on July 6th



THE CANINE GAMES / THE MINI POST

Our friends over at The Mini Post are hosting a best puppy baby contest at the Canine games in London on 7th July. There are some AMAZING prizes to be won!





Go check it out here and enter your baby! Hurry, registration closes on 5th July.

KNICKERS.

Sorry, I know it's Monday morning and it probably isn't appropriate to be talking about knickers this early. BUT TOUGH.

I have a love/hate relationship with pants.

When I found out I was pregnant, one of the first things I thought was YES I can now wear granny pants for at least nine months and get away with it (I actually still wear them on occasion - don't judge). Granny pants are comfortable aren't they. They are your friend, they make you feel like you can just be yourself. They certainly don't judge you. My M&S granny pants are just marvellous.

I despise thongs, I cannot and will not wear them. Instead I opt for 'no VPL' lace pants from, you guessed it, M&S. Not quite as comfortable as granny pants but a lot sexier and discreet. And that's probably about as sexy as it gets, although sometimes I'll put on what I call my 'I'm a MILF and Harry Styles would totally go for me' underwear. But that isn't often.

Anyway, I digress. (It's certainly too early to be thinking about Harry Styles. Or is it? No, it isn't.)

ANYWAY.

I was sent a pair of knickers to review from Charlotte & Co. Not odd in the slightest as knickers are an extremely important part of our wardrobe. As a mother, I want my clothes to be comfortable and I want my underwear to be comfortable. But that doesn't mean I want to 'look comfortable'. No. I want to look as though, even though I'm no longer a pert 21 year old... I've still got it. 


Here are the knickers


Nothing special, right? WRONG. Foundation silk knickers in pure silk jersey. The most comfortable pair of pants I have ever slipped my butt into. So thin I kept thinking I'd done a Britney and forgot to put any on. 

But seriously, they are super comfortable and you couldn't see any VPL through my skinnies. I also tried on a sheer-ish ivory dress whilst wearing these and....nothing. Perfect. Now I know why they're one of Charlotte & Co's best sellers (you can buy slips and camisoles to match too).

Are they so good that I want to throw my granny pants away? Seriously? Yes. They fit like a glove (or maybe not a glove...). I'm a convert.


I reviewed these Foundation Silk Knickers for Charlotte & Co. All opinions above are honest and my own.




TIGHTS!

I don't know about you but this weather is playing havoc with my wardrobe, not to mention Lil's. I've given up all hope to putting her in pretty dresses and sandals and have started to shop for her Autumn wardrobe (she's already wearing some of it!).

On the top of my lust list are these organic cotton tights from KyNa boutique








Made from 80% organic cotton with anti slide soles, they're perfect for not so warm Summer days and great to put away for Autumn. And affordable too! PLUS they're unisex.

Happy shopping!








A question or two...

So, I have a few questions I need answering. Feel free to help me out if you know the answer to any of them.

1. When do children learn to tidy up after themselves?

Because I'm getting pretty fucking tired of treading on bricks and having to curb my cursing/ treading on crayons and snapping them and then buying more packs to replace the ones in the bin (it's getting expensive, let me tell you)/ sliding on books and nearly breaking my neck/ fishing farm animals out from behind the radiator.

2. When will my toddler stop feeding the dog her breakfast/crayons/bottle lids?

He's getting fat.

3. When will she stop waking up at 4am and then 6am?

She obviously doesn't realise how many coffee pods we're buying for the new coffee machine and just how expensive it's getting.

4. This teething business, when does it end?

No, really.

5. When will her obsession with 'weeee weeee' (the swing) end? 

The weather is shit, daughter, you cannot go out in the fucking rain. You'll catch a cold.

6. Is it possible to mute the whinging and whining?

As she gets older it appears to be getting worse and it gives me a HEADACHE.

7. Why is it funny for her to take her nappy off and then kick it around like a football, contents and all?

WHY?

8. Can I have a holiday from this please?

No? WHY NOT?

9. Why do they have to grow up so quickly? 

I know I moan but I just want to treasure all of the above forever.

10. Why is it not socially acceptable to drink wine before noon?

They do it in Italy don't they?


Answers on a postcard.



National Trust: Cool? YES.

A few months ago we joined the National Trust. Don't laugh.

Because that's what people have been doing when we tell them we're members. So not cool. Well actually, it is cool.

For a start the properties and estates are steeped in history. And history is cool. It has shaped everything that surrounds you right now. Each and every one is beautiful (we haven't been to all of them yet, a year is not enough time...) and beauty is cool innit. There is so much to do, whichever site you visit. Indoors, outdoors. Lil loves it. It's great for kids, oh yah, totally baby/toddler/child friendly.




My favouritest most beautiful place in the whole wide world is the White Peak in the Peak District. The most tranquil place I've ever visited (and it's part of the National Trust). My first trip there was at 14 on a Geography school trip and I've been going back pretty much every year since I was 18.

The National Trust protects houses, gardens, coastlines, forests, farmlands, beaches, villages.... the list is endless. They protect them and then they open them up. Forever. For everyone.




Chirk Castle, Wales

You can even stay in a NT property; a b&b or historic house hotel, or even take a working holiday.


Interested in signing up?

If you still don't think it's 'cool', go take a look at their website. They have a shop too (I bought a beautiful recycled wool blanket from them, best £12 I ever spent).

I really cannot recommend joining enough. It's a great idea for a present too. Something to do if it's raining and something to do if it isn't. Lots of events every weekend (and during the week), a lot to do if you're a toddler...all that open space.

Waddaya reckon? I think it's pretty damn cool.

This isn't a sponsored post. I already think it's cool.

Mum guilt.

I don't think I've ever felt guilt like it before.

Before her, I rarely felt guilt. It wasn't an emotion that registered on my radar. I guess you could say I was a (bit of a) bitch.

Today, however, I am riddled with it.

Smiley, happy baby.

Tomorrow she goes for her one year jabs (two months late, I know - my doctors surgery aren't the most efficient, they sent me letters for previous jabs but this time....nothing) and I'm dreading it. I felt bad before, when she was a tiny baby and had them but it's nothing compared to how I feel right now.

If she's upset, she gives me a look and all I have to do is scoop her up in my arms and hug her. She cuddles me back, smiles and gets on with it. I'm pretty sure I've never let her get upset on purpose, that sounds silly doesn't it, what I mean is... I don't think I've ever upset her directly. Of course, I haven't let her get her way a few times which has resulted in a strop but I've never made her have that look in her eyes. But tomorrow, I'm letting the nurse hurt her. And yes it's for her own good. But still... I just know she'll look at me and think why did you let that happen Mummy? Oh my heart...

I pray she reacts well to them (ie doesn't scream, get a roaring fever/cough/rash) and that after some Calpol, we spend the day cuddling and watching Minnie Mouse. 

It's bittersweet being a Mama.

Recipe: Lime & Coconut Loaf

I do like a loaf. I very much like a cake.



Cos it looked a bit boring on its own

This one 'ere is a lime and coconut loaf. I'd like to say it was my recipe but I cannot take the credit for it. So go here if you want to make it. I suggest you do so because it's pretty amazing.

You're welcome.


Lilian & Monty

When I had Lilian, I was always worried how Monty (our 2 year old Bichon Frise) would be around her. At first, he hated the new baby. Then she grew to hate him.

Today is a different story.

Trouble makers




Monty has always 'lived' in the dining room area. When we moved in to this house, I was pregnant and we decided that we wouldn't let him in to the lounge. I didn't want to confuse him once the baby came along so he has his seperate space and she has hers.

I'm pretty sure they have some kind of pact going on, she tries to open the baby gate to let him in and feeds him her dinner. It's super cute. She's always 'making' him cups of tea and putting them through the gate.

Do you have any pets? How do they get on with your baby/toddler?





Daddy love.



Home Inspiration: Anthropologie

Remember not that long ago I wrote about the funk I found myself in? Well since then I have been busy scouring the web for ideas. Other than Alexis' blog, Anthropologie has been a huge inspiration. Their product is amazing and I'll admit that I've spent a lot of time on their website when I should have been ironing/cleaning/cooking/tidying.

If you're looking to brighten up your home, I suggest you pay them a visit.

Here is my pick of their best (to shop, click on the picture)...



Chalkboard Spice Jar - how cute are these? And oh so practical.


Cadiz Mug - Time to update your mug collection? These will look pretty in a dresser or perched on a shelf in the kitchen. 


Quirky Heirloom Throw - perfect for these not so Summery days.


Ojai Soap Dish. 


This Winking Luce Vase is on my lust list.


A great way to update an old chest of drawers - Forest Guard Knob, Rabbit.


Anthropologie


Happy Shopping! xoxo



This is not a sponsored post. 

Lemon Cake

My love for cake is probably pretty obvious at this point (if you're a regular reader), I love cake more than I love my husband (sorry Tim).

On Saturday I came across a cake stall in my local town. It was only there for the day, providing cakes to an old fashioned car show. The stall was pretty cute and Jo, who bakes and sells the cakes, had a mini pod-style caravan set up as a place for you to climb inside and eat your cake. I'm gutted I didn't get a picture.

Anyway, I digress.

I ate a slice of Jo's lemon cake. I liked it, a lot. I wanted more but at this point I was in the car. And besides, more would have been greedy. I did my arse a favour.

Except I didn't.

Now I have a taste for lemon cake. So I baked one.





In my opinion, lemon cake is the plain Jane of cakes. It doesn't look like much does it? It doesn't catch your eye. It's a pretty humble cake. But by god does it taste AMAZING. Not as good as Jo's, but my version is pretty bloody close.

What you'll need:

125g unsalted butter
175g caster sugar
175g self raising flour
2 large eggs
65ml milk
1tsp baking powder
The grated rind of 2 lemons

3 tsp granulated sugar
The juice of the lemons you used for the rind

Grease and line a loaf tin (mine was a 1kg tin)
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees
Put all ingredients into a bowl and electric whisk together until smooth and runny
Pour in to loaf tin and bake for 50 minutes
Once baked, leave to cool
Mix sugar and lemon juice together
Pierce the cake with a skewer and drizzle syrup over loaf

EAT!

Your thighs won't thank me. Sorry.


You can find out more about Jo here.


Things They Don't Tell You No. 879....

You cannot wrap your child in cotton wool or dress them in bubble wrap.


Lil had her first proper fall today. Head first into the concrete floor. I'm pretty sure it hurt me more than it did her although the massive graze and bruise on her head tell me otherwise. She cried for a bit but the kid is pretty hardcore. I on the other hand...

Children are not good for your nerves, your mental state or your sobriety.

FAMILY DAY OUT: CHARTWELL HOUSE




We went and had a mooch around Winston Churchills old pad yesterday, turns out his wife was a bloody interior genius. Such a beautiful house and the views from each room were just spectacular. Stunning. Marvellous. Well jel.

Chartwell, part of The National Trust, has pretty much been left as it was back when Sir Winston and his family lived there. This includes the lakes he created, his impressive library, the drawing room and Lady Churchill's rose garden. You can even take a peek inside his youngest daughter's playhouse in the gardens.



Those views.

Aunty.


Churchill's studio - he was a pretty good artist.

It was like being in the middle of nowhere (you'd never have guessed we were five minutes from the M25), so peaceful. Definitely worth a visit if you're in the area.

You can find out more information about Chartwell here.


This is not a sponsored post. We're members of The National Trust innit.





We LOVE stripes.

We do. Really love them. We have a whole load of them in our wardrobe (well, not so much me at the moment but I'm rebuilding my collection).

So we thought we'd share some of our favourite stripes with you and the bairns. Take a look. We think you'll love them too....





















Our eyes have gone all funny! Time to shop?


This is not a sponsored post. I genuinely love all these stripes!