Thursday, 15 September 2016

Knowsley Safari Park

Before life returned back to school runs and early mornings we had one last family day out. I spent a few days looking around for a place that we would all enjoy and was suitable to take a 4 week old. After discussing some places with Liam we decided on a trip to Knowsley Safari Park we all love animals so I knew it would be a good day. 

Set off early and managed to leave on time for once which was good as on the way there we hit some traffic around Manchester area. Getting to Knowsley from Wakefield was fairly quick and easy of course when you get closer to the Safari Park it is sign posted. When you get there you drive up to the pay point, we had pre-paid online which also made the tickets cheaper (£36 2 Adults 1 Child ) you get a free activity pack which is fun for the kids as there are stickers to place on the map. There is an option to purchase a guide book but we didn't get one. After paying you can choose to either go straight through Safari or you can park up and have a walk around the where some other animals are, we went for the Safari. 

I have been to Longleat so I knew what to expect. We were lucky because it was a nice sunny day which meant the animals were out. As soon as we drove through we had some animals right next to us, Jared-David went and sat on Liam's lap in the front so he could see them better. The first lot of animal was a mixture of Ungulates which are hooved animals, Camels, a selection of Deer there was even a Somali Wild Ass. There were a few silly jokes about the Somali Wild Ass, which was super cute and looks very similar to a Donkey. On our way round to the Lions we saw some White Rhino's which was amazing although I was terrified that they would charge at the car ( I've seen Jumanji ). There are so many animals and I'm not sure on all of the names of them but they do have a list on their website. They did have Baboons which you can chose if you want to drive through or not, there is a warning that stating that if you choose to drive through them you do so at your own risk. We went through and instantly I began to regret the decision as I saw cars getting ripped apart, the road was covered in bits of windscreen wipers and other car parts. Jared-David found this hilarious and I have to admit it was funny and I will admit I laughed at the brand new 15 and 16 plate cars leaving with no wipers and scratches. We had a few Baboons jump on the car one gnawed at the screen wash part on the bonnet and luckily that was all that happened. The Baboons was my favourite part it was so interactive and so funny. 

After our Safari drive we parked up to explore the rest of the park. This is where the Elephants and Giraffes were. Two of the Elephants were eating and it was amazing to be so close to them where the Giraffes were there was a platform which Jared-David and Liam went up so they could be level with them. Unfortunately there is no way for those with pushchairs or wheelchairs to get access to this platform. As well as having a Safari drive the park has a few shows throughout the day one of birds of prey and sea lion, I really wanted to see the sea lion show but due to access I couldn't. They have a wild trail which we found fun and although not suitable for pushchairs we did force it round. Whilst walking the trail we spotted the moose in the middle and took part in a scent trail which they have dotted around the track, we had the pleasure of sniffing badger poo. After the trail walk Jared-David and me went for a wonder in the bat caves, I practically crawled on the floor and still had bats fly into my head.

There are a few rides at the park which require you to purchase tokens, Liam took Jared-David on a little ride which was rather expensive to say they weren't on it for long. The food at the park is really good value for money and filled us up, well we still had room for ice cream but the food was nice. I really enjoyed our day out but I do think they would benefit from making the walk around area's and show area more pushchair and wheelchair friendly, as most people who tend to visit these places are families and many have small children who are in a pushchair. Of course there is the option to leave your pushchair and enter some parts but you do so at your own risk and we had a 4 week old and a lot of stuff on the pushchair. 

Tuesday, 13 September 2016

I Forgot How To Mum

Before the summer holidays started I made a list of places we would go and things we would do during the summer holidays. I think my then pregnant brain was being a tad too optimistic, I thought I could have a baby and then go here there and everywhere. I don't normally admit this but, I was wrong! 

When I had Jared-David he didn't come home until he was three months so leaving the house was easy. He kept to the hospital routine when he came home so we knew when he would want feeding and how many bottles to take with us when we went out, not that we went out much. With Eryn-Rose it has been different, I felt like I had forgotten how to mum. The first two weeks I was ill but I was still determined to make sure we got to go out and do things. 

Our first trip out was to the beach, we wanted to leave early to make sure we had a full day there despite me feeling like I had been hit by a bus. Of course leaving at the time we actually wanted to didn't work out as Eryn-Rose wanted feeding and changing then she was sick. You can't completely plan things when you have a newborn she is the one in charge not you. Once she had been all settled it was time to sort out her bag, we took way too much of everything. Looking back I have no idea why we thought we would need to take 6 sterilised bottles. We bought the pre-made milk as we knew it would be easier then taking the powder then finding somewhere for water etc. So that was our first experience of a day trip with a newborn. I also forgot how oblivious people are to prams!! Now I know some people are clumsy but how do you not see a bright pink and cream pram!! 

Prams that is another topic. When choosing Eryn-Rose's Pram I looked at a few I wanted an Egg or a Silver Cross but I didn't want to pay the same amount that I had paid for a car. I found a cheaper but similar to Silver Cross pram but when I went to get it (the day in went into the sale) they had sold out and when they got more back in the price went back up. I took to ebay, it's where Jared-David's pram came from. Hours of searching I couldn't find the three that I really liked at a price I could afford, that is when I saw a pram of no expensive brand, I could choose the colour and there were more then 3 colour options. The carry cot is similar in shape to the egg and the travel system style (the seat and car seat) are similar to the silver cross. At half the price of the ones I had been looking at I decided that I wanted it so I did. It came from Poland just like Jared-David's. Now when I was looking at pram's my daughter's comfort and safety was what I was thinking of and one thing I have noticed about pram's is this, they are small! and seem to be getting smaller. I understand that this baby is small but seriously they need a bit of space and if you want to charge £1000+ for something at least give the tiny human some space. Even the shopping baskets are getting smaller. It seems to me that these companies design the pram for the ease and comfort of the parents and not the baby. 

I could carry on rambling about all the other things I forgot about. I forgot about how much they love a cuddle which is such a plus and something every parent, brother/sister and grandparent should make the most of.

Thursday, 8 September 2016


A few weeks ago there was an event in Leeds held by Cotton Traders to celebrate their century of great British summers. The event was a summer throw back with fairground games and a BBQ. Unfortunately we didn't end up going to the event but the lovely people sent us a box full of goodies so we didn't miss out. 

A lot has changed in a century from fashion to how we spend our summer days which you can read all about on their website. Usually as a family we would go on a little holiday however this year what with having Eryn-Rose we had to settle for a day trip and fun at home and local parks. Trying to keep a four year old occupied in the house can be hard work and although we did have day trips Jared-David did get bored on the days when we were home. So what did we get in the box I hear you cry?

Sunglasses, ok so as a country we are not famous for the sun but these little beauties are still needed. We got two pairs Eryn-Rose is modelling a nice yellow pair and Jared-David got the blue pair. Little fact for you - sunglasses were invented in the 12th century. Over the years they have become more stylish and also more protective. 

This was my favourite goodie, a design your own kite. Jared-David was busy colouring his it had been raining and I was feeling creative. Since the PokemonGo app Jared-David has found an interest in them so I thought I would use the other kite to create a one of a kind Pokemon kite. These are great and will keep your kids (and adults) entertained for a long time. Kite have been around for years and I pretty sure every kid loves flying one. 

There were a selection of inflatables for us to play with including the Saxophone which Jared-David is posing with. We also got an inflatable lolli pop and the beach time classic a beach ball. I think the beach ball is the most played with at the beach a side from buckets and spades, we like to take them to the outdoor swimming pool as well. 

pasty face shows that I haven't been in the sun much but hey I have a stick of rock so I'm happy. Jared-David was opening the rock before I could even see what flavour it was, it's bubble gum. We got a few other sweets and some bubbles which we all enjoyed including the dog. It has been really receiving these items it made me think of how summer has changed from when I was a child. I want to make sure that my children enjoy a summer outside engaging with the family and these items will definitely help. Please do take a look at the Cotton Traders  celebrating a century of summer, it's interesting to see how things have changed since 1920. 

Saturday, 27 August 2016

Whoosh 3D - 3D screen protector review

So my latest product review is a 3D screen protector. The lovely people and 3DU sent me their 3D whoosh screen cover product. Now in the ever evolving technological world the new big thing is 3D, whether it be 3D games or 3D movies it's all about increasing the immersive atmosphere. Now usually you'd have to wear 3D glasses to make such an effect possible but this product eliminates the need for the glasses with its special screen protector. 

When the product arrived everything you need is supplied within the package including a dust cloth, dust removal film, the screen cover, the application code, the appliance to apply the screen cover and also £15 worth of vouchers for the company 3DU. The protector is applied in the same way any other screen protector is. By sliding the sticky screen cover over your phone and ensuring that there are no air bubbles. Now because I was using my phone to put the cover on I obviously have no pictures of this step but I found it relatively easy to apply the cover and there are step by step instructions supplied with the product. 

Once I had got the screen cover on then the fun started. I downloaded a free application from the app store called Whoosh3D. At this point you need to enter a code which was located on a card that was again included with the product. Now within the app you could stream 3D videos direct to your phone. The speed of the streaming was good with little to no delays there was some tinkering I had to do with the settings to get the best picture however once I had set the best picture quality I could no believe how well the product worked. I must admit I was a bit sceptical about how well the product would work but I was not great fully disproved. 

The product is £20 and as of yet is only available for the iPhone 6, 5S and 5C. The product can be found on 3DU's website and will be delivered very quickly. Mine arrived within a matter of days. Overall I would recommend this product to anyone who loves technology and the latest a gadgets and at £20 is one of the more affordable pieces of tech on the market.

I was sent this item for free to review, however this has no bearing on my opinion of the product.

Thursday, 18 August 2016

Diary Doll Review And Giveaway

 Lets talk about underwear, not a subject most people will talk about but we all have similar habits when it comes to your knickers. You will have knickers that are comfy and for everyday use, sexy knickers for when you are going out or having a romantic night with the other half and then you have them knickers that are only used for that time of the month. 

Diary Doll are pants that will make you feel more comfortable and confident, for when you are on your period or if you have a weak pelvic floor and leak a little when you laugh. You know what I mean that moment when you think it is safe to laugh or cough/sneeze but then a little bit of wee comes out. These pants were thought of with young women in mind who may suffer with heavy periods, I know that when I was a teenager I was so paranoid that when I was on my period I would leak and be the subject of the latest school taunts! I would of welcomed these pants. What makes these pants different is that they have a secret waterproof panel. This is what prevents the possible leakage.

So how did I get on with them? I had just had Eryn-Rose so this was the perfect time for me to try them out. Before I say what I liked about them I just want to touch on the packaging. One pant was on a little coat hanger and had the tag attached, I love the design label I think it is super cute and it doesn't seem to target any certain age group. The other pants came in a little box which gives you some information on the bottom, inside the box the pants are neatly folded and there is a little signature from Annabel and Carol which I think is a nice touch. Any way back to the pants, I found them really comfortable and soft. My first fear was that the waterproof panel might make me sweaty down there and also be really uncomfortable, you can't tell at all that the panel is there once they are on and I also didn't get sweaty which is a bonus. I felt more confident in going out when I had these on as I was certain that if I did leak that the pants had me covered. My mum tried out the second pair I thought it might be best to get two opinions from two different age ranges and different pant problems. My mum found them comfortable and light to wear which I agree with as it kind of feels like you are going commando! My mum has a busy job and she does suffer from the cough and leak problem, so for her to they needed to be comfortable while running around at work. My mum was happy with the sizing and said that they were a comfortable fit and also didn't lose any shape or feel after being washed. I'm really happy with the pants and they are a welcome addition to my underwear draw.


If you fancy a pair you can purchase them from Diary Doll they are also available in 122 Boots stores, they are priced at £14.95. If you are feeling lucky you can enter below to win a the pants in size 14-16 in Black.   a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, 16 August 2016

Breastfeeding And Me

When I found out I was pregnant I decided that I wanted to breastfeed. I never really got the chance with Jared-David as he was born at 28 weeks, I expressed for a while but it was so hard I had to hook myself up to the milking machine (breast pump) every 3 hours and when you don't have your baby with you and are lacking skin to skin contact it becomes more of a chore then a bonding experience. So this time I had my heart set on it. I was told by my midwives at 36 weeks to start hand expressing or use my pump (I think this was due to my gestational diabetes). It was a little uncomfortable to begin and I didn't really get anything, but when I was expressing the days before Eryn-Rose was born I started to get colostrum which I collected in the syringes provided by the hospital. 

The day Eryn-Rose was born I managed to get her latched on and breastfeeding seemed like it was going to be a success!! Later that night I did ask for some help as she kept getting hiccups and coming off which was painful, one breast hurt more then the other. Once I was home I continued and the midwife contacted the local breastfeeding Guru's who came round and said yep your doing great. Day 2 it was beginning to get really painful, I had cracked nipples that were bleeding and my breast were just so sore. I was told that it was just because she wasn't latching on properly and that the hiccups would't be helping. I carried on with it because even with all the pain it was what I wanted to do this plus, I was robbed of this with Jared-David. 

On Day 3 I was scream out in pain every time she latched on, my toes would dig into the floor and I would sit thinking 'it will all get better'. On this day Eryn-Rose spent between 12-14 hours continuously on and off my breasts, I was in agony and I was exhausted. I asked the midwife if this was all normal and mentioned the pain again, I explained that every feed Eryn-Rose was getting hiccups which was making things hard and that she also won't part with wind. I was told that it was normal for newborn babies who are breastfed to want a feed every hour (they don't mention that in the leaflets or the talks!!) I was also told to try her in a different position as she may be having problems latching on (No she didn't have problems latching on my breast are just in agony but she is on them for hours).

In the early hours of Day 4 I was sat in tears!! I couldn't feed my baby as the pain was just unbearable (I have a very high pain threshold as well). I was in pain and tired I hadn't slept for so long as Eryn-Rose was wanting a feed every hour then she would get hiccups which meant she couldn't feed correctly, making it very stressful for us both. At 2:30am I drove to Asda and bought formula milk! When I got back Liam prepared the bottle and I sat there crying, upset that I couldn't feed my baby feeling guilty that I had given up. I cried a good few times every time I gave her a bottle. I can't really describe how I felt/feel about giving up breastfeeding but it was what was best for my baby who just wasn't really getting what she needed. 

Once I stopped I expressed for a few days but even this was painful, it was just put down to general pain. I then had to stop expressing as it was still painful, mainly my nipples as they were so cracked and sore (no matter how much nipple cream I used) it was also awkward as I was having to leave gaps in between as we had plans and I wasn't feel well. I began to feel really unwell and was glad that I wasn't breastfeeding as I felt awful. I had a fever, my body ached all over and at times I couldn't speak properly and I also had a rash just under my breasts, I managed to get in at the doctors who told me I had Mastitis which had turned into an infection. When speaking with the doctor she is fairly certain I had had Mastitis from the first few days of breastfeeding and maybe even before when I was expressing before Eryn-Rose was born. I felt a bit of relief as that would explain why it was so hard and painful to breastfeed but at the same time I felt robbed again. If I wasn't told repeatedly that the pain I was feeling was due to latching on problems then I would of gone to the doctor sooner and I could of carried on breastfeeding. 

Emotionally I have found this really hard to deal with for a few reasons. This may sound silly as feeding a baby, it shouldn't matter how it is done. Right?! well maybe so but I had no control or say over anything during my pregnancy thanks to my cervix, thyroid and gestational diabetes. So having your heart set on something that you can choose like breastfeeding then your body deciding that actually it isn't happy with that choice, really sucks. I wanted that special bonding time with her and I wanted to have that skin to skin with her. It was a choice I wanted and a choice that was taken away. If you plan to breastfeed your baby please speak to people about it as there is so much they don't tell you.       

Wednesday, 10 August 2016

Say Hello To The New Blogging Member

Meet my daughter Eryn-Rose ValerieBurton. She came into the world at 11:35 July 30th weighing 7lbs (not bad to say I had gestational diabetes).

My labour, geez what a faff as you may of established nothing in my pregnancy went as planned! So why would my labour? On Friday the 29th I thought I wet the bed, surely it wasn't my waters as it was only a small amount. Up I got to go tother toilet I leaked a little on my way. Embarrassing!! I was up and down and couldn't sleep so I rang the assessment unit who said to keep an eye on it (panicking I was 5cm on Wednesday and hadn't felt a thing). I couldn't sleep at all, actually that's a lie I rang the assessment unit an hour later who asked me to go up I than had an hour.

We dropped Jared-David off with his Nanna and then off we went, Liam, my Mum and me (still leaking like a tap). They had a look at my pad and said yep it's slow leaking waters, fantastic! At first I needed sewing up to keep her in and now she is in no rush, typical! They told me they would just induce me which was a relief but then the fear set in. Not about having her oh no! But the pain of being induced. I got a room and had to wait until there was space on labour ward. I walked and walked in hope of bringing it on each step leaking more paranoid I would end up soaking myself. I didn't. At 10pm (12 hours later) I was still waiting I sent Liam home as he had a rugby game to go to and with what we had been told I was sure I wouldn't go across for a while yet. Did you know they will induce you at 4am? I had no idea but everyone was getting contractions and taken across and I was just laid there with not even a twinge.

6Am I was woken after about half an hours sleep (every emotion running through me). I was told it was time, exciting and scary. Could I go through this? Well I had no choice even if I didn't want to. This was happening I was having a baby today!! Quick check and I was told I was fully dilated (yep still not a twinge lucky I was told). I turned on the Coronation Street omnibus whilst they hooked me up to my insulin drip and the artificial hormone to kick start labour, oh they also broke my forewaters as they were still intact.
 As you can see I was slightly bored but now I was hooked up (9:30) I started to get a few cramps after a few minutes they got more painful and I requested gas and air. My mum was watching the monitor which recorded how strong the contractions were, her face said it all as they got stronger and longer. The whole time during me pushing this baby out I could hear David Platt and I just wanted to smack him in the face. Maybe it was good job that my boyfriend was currently on his way to Leigh to watch rugby. Eryn-Rose entered the world at 11:35 and she was just perfect, I was tired and my mum was beginning to feel better after nearly passing out. 
To any woman reading this who is currently waiting to meet their tiny human, I just want to say Good Luck!! also don't expect the delivery to be like you see on TV, only around 10% of women's waters break before labour. Enjoy your birth and just remember don't scream or shout but your chin on your chest and push!!