Friday, 11 August 2017

Kids Vs Fruit & Veg

It can sometimes be a struggle getting my kids to have 1 of their 5 a day. We go through phases in our house, one week Jared will like certain vegetables and fruit and the next anyone would think I've offered him poison! I have been trying to encourage more healthy eating in our house but rather than just shoving vegetables and fruit in everyone's faces I've got them involved.

Pick Your Own
To make eating fruit more fun I like to take Jared to pick his own fruit, which of course
he eats as he picks. We have a really great pyo strawberry farm near us so we always go there. We also go blackberry picking in the wild as he calls it, free fruit and free fun.

Grow Your Own
Jared has a strong interest in gardening, he has a gardening set and really enjoys spending time planting seeds. I bought him some seeds for a variety of vegetables which he couldn't wait to plant. These won't be ready for a while yet but it teaches Jared about the process while he waits.

Make Fruit Fun
We know it's good for us and we drill that into our kids as well. Anything that is good for just isn't as fun as having sweets and chocolates. We love making fruit kebab sticks, cutting fruit into fun shapes and adding fruit into water or jelly.

Vegetable Disguise
Yep just like it says. I hide them in their food for when I really can't get them totaled a bite. A fab disguise is if they are having fish finger or chicken nuggets then you can buy the veggie ones so you can pop 2 chicken/fish and 2 veggie.

Any way you find best to encourage healthier eating in children?

Sunday, 23 July 2017

Diggerland Catleford Review

So a few weeks ago we were selected to visit Diggerland. I have been with Jared before but it was Liams first visit so he will be writing the review :)

The nearest Diggerland to us is around 15 minutes away but oddly enough we have never actually been as a family before. We had 2 adult and 2 kids tickets so Jared brought along his friend Nicholas. When we drove up to the car park we drove past lots of diggers all painted to look as though they have faces which got the kids all excited (on account of us keeping the day trip a secret) Once we had parked we walked up to the entrance to be greeted by the official Digger Land mascots, Duggy & Dotty.

When we went into the park it was a JCB lovers paradise. With 21 different rides and activities to do it is safe to say we didn't know where to start. We decided to start at the very back and work out way back to the exit. The first ride we went on was the train that took you through a dinosaur & gnome wood. The kids got to sit in their own carts with little steering wheels which added to the excitement for them.

From there is was onto the Jungle Safari, You drive around an off road dirt track in a Jeep and try and spot jungle animals. Jared's first reaction was "WOW! It's like Jurassic Park" they loved it that much that they went on it twice!

From there it was onto the Groundshuttle. The digger raised you in the air then took you out to a dirt patch and started spinning around and driving at speed. I personally really enjoyed it, the kids... not so much (as you can see in the photo), it was hard to predict which was the digger would spin so was difficult to shift your body weight to make sure you didn't fall off the seat.

We made our way over to the Robots, our task was to manoeuvre  a little digger through a muddy track. It was much harder than it looked, you could feel the digger slipping around in the mud which meant you had to really concentrate to make sure you didn't get stuck. It was really good fun and the controls were simple enough to allow young children to take control of the vehicle.

Next to the robots were rows of excavators all with different mini games, you could dig for gold, try and hook a duck or try and knock down as many skittles as possible. We tried them all and my favourite was the skittles, you swung the ball using the diggers arm, almost like you would swing a wrecking ball. Jade took Nicholas on the hook a duck which looked tricky, trying to keep the hook still took a lot of skill and co-ordination.

I then went on a ride on my own. Neither of the kids wanted to go on the Skyshuttle that raises you 50feet in the air. The view from the top was outstanding however I wouldn't recommend it to anyone scared of heights. I was sat on the edge and it is a little nerve wracking seeing the ground get further and further away.


We took a ride in a back hoe over the mud field and even went for a swing in the digging scoops before driving around in the dumper trucks  There is also a little play area for younger kids which has little tykes cars, water tables, go karts and there is also a big indoor play area for if the weather turns mid-way through your day out.

The best bit about Diggerland is that all the rides and activities are free except of the coin operated go karts and dodgems. In terms of value for money it is great, you can taken your own picnic in to save money on food and if you kid or partner leave Diggerland thinking their not a professional digger operator then they are lying. You can check Diggerland out here which includes prices and locations. They have 5 sites throughout the UK.



























Overall we loved our day out, The activities we fun, the staff were great and if you got on a ride and it was just you waiting on it they would just set off rather than wait for a full ride which meant you were never really waiting to set off long.

Disclaimer: tickets for Diggerland were sent to ourselves for free. This has not influenced my opinion on the attraction.

Monday, 10 July 2017

Modern Day Mothers

Today whilst Eryn-Rose slept sweetly on my lap I found myself watching TV, something which is a rarity for a weekday daytime. I got sucked into ITV's This Morning and they had a phone in for Mothers who were basically struggling, something I can certainly relate to. However when I came it across the discussion on their facebook post I was disgusted at some of the comments. It was a cross between world's biggest sob story and a 'get over it' attitude. Woman saying how their Grandma trekked half way across the country with 10 kids worked and still managed to have a clean house and tea on the table by 5. Well hats off to you Grandma's!

The thing is people are so quick to drag others down. Back in the 50's and 60's life was different and spending time with your children wasn't a huge thing and life was considered good as long as you had food on the table. Women didn't necessarily have to work either depending on the other half's wage. When I was growing up things weren't too bad I was brought up by just my mum for the first ten years of my life, she worked and we got by. When she married my step dad and we became a family and my mum had two children we did ok my Dad worked full time and my Mum worked part time or not at all. Now in this day and age every couple/family I know both parents work full time.


Mothers and equally Fathers struggle in life today managing family life alongside work. Many of the comments I read suggested that women were just struggling to keep on top of the housework and that these struggling mothers should simply just get on with it. I'm not ashamed to admit that I'm finding life pretty tough right now. I have just returned work having had to reduce my hours as they couldn't offer me full time flexible hours, meaning we have lost £1000 a month. On top of that I have training I need to do at home as I don't have time to complete it at work, the car needs a lot of repairs (again), we have credit cards to pay back after having to use them to survive and fix the car, childcare issues because I do not have £5.50 per hour per child spare, medical issues that I have to try and fit appointments in around school runs and work, emotional issues regarding everything going on and my children and the lack of time I seem to have for them, oh and lets not forget the shopping, cleaning, washing and cooking. Have I missed anything off??

I was so angry reading some of those comments because they just assume they know everything about a person and think well if I can do it I don't see why they can't.
Why in 2017 do we feel it is ok to have this attitude?
Why do we feel that we need the biggest triumph and sob story?
Why can't we just help a damn mother or father that just needs that little bit of help?

I don't really know what more I can say other than please for the love of God, stop being a horrible human being. If you can't or don't have anything nice or supportive to say then don't say anything because your negative attitude could be the reason someone takes their own life!

Home Start
Barnardos
family lives

Wednesday, 21 June 2017

Hape Toys: Elephants

Children learn mainly through play so for us it is important that we choose wisely when it comes to picking Eryn-Rose's toys. The all singing all dancing toys are great fun for babies and young children (a headache for parents) but we like to make sure we have a wide variety of toys for both of our children to help them learn through play. I really love wooden toys and puzzle and always remember Jared-David having a big collection of wooden puzzles, blocks and shape sorters.

A little while a go we were sent a gorgeous wooden Elephant puzzle from Hape. The Elephant puzzle is part of the George Luck range which are a collection of puzzles that are different from your usual puzzle layout. The George Luck puzzle's are cut into single or layers which and use bright and bold colours painted with eco-friendly water based paints. Each puzzle has a theme giving more choice for your children. The Elephant puzzle is smaller than I thought it would be but is still a good size. The packaging is fair and has a picture instructions of how the puzzle fits together. This particular puzzle is recommended for children 3 years and over.

Jared-David always get's really giddy when I tell him there is a parcel for him to open, he ripped the package open and immediately wanted to play. The puzzle was easy for Jared to fit together and I think he was a bit disheartened as he does enjoy sitting and tackling a challenging puzzle, I think one of the bigger ones would of suited him better. I always leave him to it an observe from afar watching him play, is there anything sweeter than watching their imagination take over?
As I stated he did complete the puzzle rather quickly but he then spent ages playing with the elephant shapes, giving them names and accents and moving them on to the wooden farm.


The benefits of this puzzle is it helps with learning how to solve problems by getting the pieces to fit into the correct place. The bright colours help with learning colours as parents can sit down with their child and ask questions such as "what colour is this Elephant?" you can count the pieces with your child and of course you can just leave them to play and enjoy a cuppa while you smile sweetly at them playing.

I would recommend this puzzle to any parent who is looking for a lovely gift for their child as the quality is fantastic.

Monday, 5 June 2017

Candy Crush Lip Balm's


Many people have lots of hours, days, weeks on the game popular game Candy Crush. Let's face it, it is a great way to pass time and also highly addictive! Does anyone know just how many levels there are to this game?

If you are a Candy Crush addict then you will be pleased to know you can now own your very own Chocolate Mountain, Bubblegum Bridge, Lemonade Lake and Peppermint Palace in the form of lip balms. So if you have ever been staring at the screen wondering what these places smell like now you need not wonder anymore.


I have a slight obsession with lip balm, I have over 20. So I was excited to add these to my collection. I first just want to say that the packaging is great and I wouldn't expect it to be any other way, it replicates the game shapes and the colours perfectly. Of course my son immediately wanted to try them (he may inherit my lip balm obsession). As with most lip balms there is an age recommendation for these it is age 6, my son is 5 and I applied it to his lips for him. 

The lip balms have a smooth creamy texture which makes them easy to apply, I find some lip balms can have a tacky/sticky texture which aren't very pleasant. The scents of the lip balms are really nice and not to overbearing which is great. I liked how the lip balms didn't leave a slimy shine to my lips something else I find can happen with lip balm. I didn't need to re apply the lip balm too much during the day when using either, meaning these will last a good while. 


You can find these lip balms in Primark for £1.50 they are great to give as part of a gift for a birthday or even at Christmas as a stocking filler. I think the price is fair in comparison to other lip balms but do think it would be nice if they had them available in a collection. 

Please note that we were sent four Candy Crush lip balms for the purpose of this review. However this in noway impacts on the thoughts and opinions expressed in this review.   
     


Sunday, 14 May 2017

Super Geek Heroes: Review & Giveaway

Jared-David could spend all day on his tablet if I let him. The videos he normally watches are not exactly educational and more silly and dare I say pointless! (apologies to all you kinder and toy video makers). We recently were sent an email about a new video playlist which is educational and includes super heroes.

These super geek heroes are on a mission to learn! Children in foundation stage will benefit from watching these videos as the super heroes super powers come from three prime and four specific development areas which are, personal, social and emotional development, understanding the world, communication and language, literacy, numeracy, physical development and creative arts and design. So now you know a little bit about what they are let me introduce them to you.


Jake Jotter
He is the cheeky chap of the bunch. Jake's super powers help children with improving their reading and writing. Jake get's around by flying on his magic jet powered pencil.





Suzy Smiles
Suzy is considerate, loving, upbeat and very helpful. Suzy is always kind to others and really values friendships. It's no surprise that Suzy uses her powers to support and help strengthen their emotional health and intelligence.


Vicky Voice
Vicky is a very bright girl, she can speak every language in the world! Vicky uses her powers to help children with communication. Vicky uses phonic sounds to help children with speaking clearly and the alphabet.


Ronnie Rock
Ronnie loves nothing more than being creative, he is apparently a good singer! Ronnie zooms around his musical scooter helping children to become more creative by singing, dancing and painting.







Peter Planet
Peter has a solar powered hover board which takes him from mission to mission. He is a very smart boy, an expert in the weather and the seasons. He knows about what grows and lives on our planet.


Ant Active
Ant loves all sports and knows so much about loads of them, football, golf, tennis etc. He is always full of energy. Ant uses his powers to help show children how they can be healthy through eating and playing.










Millie Maths
Millie is super smart and as her name suggests very very good at maths. Millie likes to help children learn to love mathematics all the while bouncing around on her space hopper in the shape of the number five.









The videos are really nice to watch and each one varies on topic depending which super geek is on the episode. I really love that they are short, sweet and educational. I watched all the episodes and think they are perfect and a great alternative to the usual nonsense that my son watches. Jared-David is in foundation stage at school and everything is spoken and spelt out in phonics, this is something I really like about the videos. A lot of educational programmes on TV don't use phonics when spelling out and pronouncing words but these do which helps with keeping in line with his current learning style.

I set the playlist up for Jared-David, he wasn't very happy at first as he wanted to watch some toys being thrown into a paddling pool (really is that the entertainment for 5year olds?). I told Jared-David it was a super hero show and that he should just try and watch it see if he liked it. Well he must of liked it as he watched them all. Peter is his favourite and I have been told I need to buy a hoover board (hover board) for him for Christmas. Peter was also his favourite because he was teaching him all about what he is learning in school about seasons. Jared-David has already shown two of his friends super geek heroes and also his teacher who seemed very impressed. I gave the teacher the details of the videos and told her how to find them and she was going to watch them to see if it is something she could maybe use in the classroom.


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Monday, 8 May 2017

Tips On How To Deal With Bad Behaviour

How many time's do I need to tell you!! This is something I'm having to say more and more now a days and it's really grating on me. My son has lately started speaking and treating me differently I'm getting the 'I hate you' on a daily basis, I've no idea what I have done wrong some days. I have been trying to find different ways to discipline this new behaviour but it is so hard to find the right balance and what is appropriate for his age. Obviously I can't just leave it as I don't want him to think that it's acceptable to treat people this way. I have spoken to teachers at his school who say that he is as good as gold at school, great but not so great when it makes me feel like I'm doing something is wrong at home.

Below is a few things we have tried, some have worked better than others.

Talking
Shouting doesn't work. When does shouting ever work? We have now started to talk with Jared-David, asking him why he has done what ever it is he has done. This works to an extent for example when he is throwing the odd coco pop onto the floor I ask him why is he doing that? he will then say he doesn't no why or because he is bored. I then explain that it's nice to do that and it causes a mess that he will have to pick up. This usually works fine and doesn't result in any sort of an argument which is great. I've found that if Jared-David is in a bad mood and feeling grumpy, talking doesn't work so well as he will just shout and scream and it gets us nowhere which brings me onto the next one.

Time Out
When he was younger this never worked and time out would drag out for hours and hours. I think now that he is a bit older and has the capacity to reflect a little about his behaviour time out is working. When the shouting, screaming and tantrum starts then he is sent to time out to calm down and to have a think. The time he spends in time out is up to him and he knows that, I will not set a time as I don't know how long it will take him to calm and feel ready to come and have a chat with me about his actions that got him sent there.

Behaviour Chart
We have recently stopped using the chart but there were big benefits from it and also some negatives. On our chart we tackled certain areas which needed to improve, bed time and tea time mainly. We agreed that if there was a 12 or more stars in one week then he would get a reward just something small like a magazine. This worked for a while but then it got to a point where when we were shopping or went somewhere he would ask for something because he had been good that day I would then explain about the chart and that we don't get rewards everyday, this then caused tantrums. As the chart had served it's purpose for improving his behaviour in certain areas we decided to stop using it.

Speak To Others
My son is no angel that I know. However I also knew that some of his new behaviours had been seen and picked up from other children, it's just a part of life I guess. Jared-David had started saying swear words that neither Liam or myself use so I knew it was time to talk to his teachers. When I spoke to his teacher I also explained about other things he had started doing at home an the manner in which he had started speaking to me. His teacher has been great and dealt with the swearing issue and has also been teaching all children not just mine about how to speak with people. I think as parents we often try and deal with it all ourselves which is fine but sometimes speaking with a teacher, childminder or even health visitor can work wonders.

Children are such hard work and often test us but sometimes it can be due to us not understanding. We often forget that they don't know how to act in certain situations and don't know how to appropriately react to their emotions. They are still learning and although they we might sometimes struggle and feel like there is nothing we can do, just remember you are not the only parent going through this and there is help available if you need it. Asking for help isn't a way of saying you are rubbish it shows that you care and want to find the best way possible. 

Sunday, 30 April 2017

Little Mouse Helps Out: Book Review

Children in England have a less than positive attitude towards reading than in other countries, only 26% of 10 year-olds 'like reading' compared to 46% in Portugal, 42% in Georgia, 35% in Romania and 33% in Azerbaijan. My son currently loves reading and I hope this is something that will continue, we read with him at least once a day and I know that he reads at schools. It is upsetting to know that most children do not read or enjoy reading on a daily basis. For me tucking your child into bed a grabbing a book to read is second nature, it's part of that 'perfect' mother image. You see it in all the films too. 

We have a few book shelves in our house, one for Jared-David, one for me and soon one for Eryn-Rose. The newest addition to Jared-David's book shelf is a book called 'Little Mouse Helps Out' by Riikka Jantti. On first glance of the book the illustration caught my eye and reminded me of books from when I was a child. Riikka Jantti is also the illustrator which I think is great as it captures the look of what the author wanted the character's to look like. I also like that the pictures aren't really modern to the point you know everything was digitally created. 


When it came to reading the book I snuggled up with the kids on the sofa. After reading the first few pages Jared-David said 'mummy did you write this book?' I explained to him that I didn't and asked him why he thought that. Jared-David then explained that what was happening in the book is like what happens at home with us. For example there is a part in the story where the mouse is trying to get his own drink and it spills everywhere and although the mouse looks a bit upset mummy mouse says 'That's all right' and cleans it up. The more we read the more we could relate which is why this is now a firm favourite in our house. 

I think the story is one that many families can relate to and I find when reading to Jared-David if a book is relate able or just really 'awesome' then it keeps them interested. If a child is interested then they are more likely to learn to love to read. We truly loved this story and will be getting more stories from Riikka Jantti, 



  

Friday, 28 April 2017

Top 5 Things To Do Before Returning To Work

My maternity leave is coming to an end. This is something I knew was coming and had time to think about, having that time really hasn't made it any easier though. As I can't return back to my original place of work I will be returning to a new work site with a new manager and new colleagues. So in a sense it is like starting a whole new job! I don't feel ready to leave my baby and I know I'm going to miss things and this makes me sad so I was thinking of ways I could deal with returning to work to make it easier for not just me but for Eryn-Rose.


1. Routine
For months now you will have had a routine that fits well with you and baby. Now it's time to start thinking of a new routine that adds going to work into the mix. Think of what time you need to leave the house take into account getting your baby to the childcare provider. Also make sure the person who is looking after your baby knows of any nap times and meal times as this will really help your baby with the change, as it won't affect their known routine too much.

2. Home life 
When returning to work you will have less time to do homely things. So preparing lunches and meals the night before are great, pick a day which is best to do your weekly shop and if possible try and go after work maybe see if there is a day that whoever is watching your baby can have them for a little bit longer than usual and if not shopping online is a great time saver. Housework can tend to be forgotten when you are work, although nobody is in all causing a mess the dust soon builds up. If you have a partner try and share the chores out between you.

3. Check In
Mum guilt is most likely going to set in and you may get anxiety, so arrange a time (on your lunch break) to either have a quick chat with the person watching your baby or send them a text. Over time it will get easier but for the few weeks it's hard, after all you have probably not spent much time away from your little one.
4. You Time
Yes you have been at work all day and the hoovering needs doing and you want to play peek-a-boo and read a book while they fall asleep but you need to have some you time. This I think is so important and something I struggled with when I went back to work after having my son but it is needed. Go for a walk or sit and read a book for an hour or on a weekend go out with the girls and be you. You are not just a mum or an employee you are your own person too.

5. Dummy Run 
This probably should be higher up on the list but although I think it's good to get a dummy run in I know it's not always doable. I think doing a dummy run is a great way of being able to work out if the times you think will work, will work! I always over estimate how long getting somewhere will take so I'm always sat that scrolling through facebook waiting for 10am to tick on by. Good job I bought a unicorn drinks flask so I could have coffee with that scroll.



Wednesday, 26 April 2017

Teether Clothing: Princess Lace Baby Sunsuit

When it comes to baby clothing I get so excited! Even more so now that I have a little girl. Eryn-Rose has a wide variety of clothing from all varying in style and price. When I look for her clothing I love little independent retailers, I find that they often have super cute items that can help make your little one have a little stand out from the crowd. After all how many people do you see wearing the same outfit that your baby owns?

The people over at Teether.co.uk sent Eryn-Rose a gorgeous sunsuit. I have to say I was so impressed with this piece of clothing, on first glance at the website you would think that the sunsuit would be kind of thin as it is lace. Under the lace pattern is a lining, it's a bit like a vest covered in a beautiful lace design. The only part that doesn't have an under layer is on the arms but I personally think that would spoil the design.

The lace baby sunsuit comes in white. As a parent I know white is a colour to avoid on children so I tried my best to make sure no food was spilt on it. Unfortunately food did get on it and it was orange food (lasagne), I whipped it off her and popped some stain remover on and threw it in the machine. I was so glad that I had already taken some pictures as I thought that was it, brilliant white was gone. However after it had dried I realised it had survived! Mum - 1 Lasagne - 0. I must say it washed really well and I washed it on my normal cycle, I can't say how it copes with a tumble dryer as I don't own one.

The lace baby sunsuit comes in sizes 0-3, 3-6, 6-12 and 12-18. I have teamed this sunsuit up with shorts and skirts mostly but I think a nice pair of leggings or jeans would look equally as nice. You can purchase this for £9.99 which is such a good price. If you aren't a fan of this why not have a look at their other clothing for both boys and girls you will not be disappointed.


Please note: We were sent this item for free for the purpose of a review, this in no way influences the opinions expressed in the review. This is Jade's Journey's honest opinion of the item. 

Monday, 24 April 2017

Weekly Meal Plan: 24/04/2017

Half term is over, back to school they go. I hope you all had a great half term we certainly did, it was packed full of fun we even got some sunshine. So it was my birthday last week which we were away for, I ate way too much naughty foods too. I got some lovely gifts and really enjoyed spending time with family we don't get to see very often. I have a really exciting announcement which deserves a post all to itself so keep an eye out for that which I might get finished to post later on today but if not it will be up tomorrow. On with the food take a look at what we will be eating this week. 

  
Monday - Pasta bake with garlic bread. 
Tuesday - Jerk chicken with slimming world chips, corn on the cob and salad. 
Wednesday - Turkey stir fry. 
Thursday - Jacket potato. 
Friday - Chicken curry with rice. 
Saturday - Lasagna and salad. 
Sunday - Sausages, mash, veg, Yorkshire puddings and gravy. 

Would love to see what you are having this week. 

Monday, 17 April 2017

Weekly Meal Plan: 17/04/2017

I took a break last week. I really needed to just be away from everything as the stress levels are building. Something that I can't see ending anytime soon, my maternity is coming to an end and my job is well not my job anymore. I have so much planned that I need to research and get as many people to speak about their experiences so that I can write these well formed blog posts about childcare, work and how in life you either have to choose a career or a family.
This week it is my birthday and we are away from Wednesday so I'm hoping my scheduled posts go live when they are suppose to, as we are away the menu is a very rough guide from Wednesday. Enjoy.


Monday: Chicken with mashed potatoes, veg and Yorkshire puddings.
Tuesday: Pasta bake with garlic bread.
Wednesday: Pizza
Thursday: Eating out for my birthday
Friday: Cottage pie
Saturday: McDonalds or KFC
Sunday: Fish and chips


Friday, 7 April 2017

Run Down

Do you ever get to that point where you just feel so run down?

That is exactly how I feel at the minute. I have so much that I need to sort and no time to do any of it or it's something that I can't control. Last week I had a lot going on I had Doctor appointments which I thought would be something of nothing and now it turns out I could have a few things but they can't tell me until they re-test again in 3-6 months!! That for me is a long time to worry about something and it really hurt when the the Doctor called me fat! I'm trying my hardest what more do they want?

Another thing that is really getting to me is work. I'm due to go back to work on the 29th of May, however I don't even know if I will be going back. I have been trying for month to sort out flexible working hours so that I can arrange affordable childcare. I explained to my manager and HR that I needed this sorting asap as childcare is hard to find and that the hours I'm due to go back to I physically can not do (3:15pm-11pm sleep there 8am-3:30pm 5 days over 7). I find out Monday in a meeting if they will accept my flexible working hours that I submitted which still leaves me struggling for childcare as they have left it far too late, my son's school has a year waiting list for after school club and the nursery has no space for my daughter. I have looked at childminders but the cost is way out of my price range and made me realise I'm defiantly in the wrong job.

My kids are being a bit testing as of late which too is causing me a lot of stress and the feeling of just giving up! I'm finding less and less time for myself these day which although I don't mind when it comes to spending time with the boyfriend I just want to go to sleep as I'm exhausted. Saying that I have picked up a few hobbies, crochet and sewing. I'm finding my blog is getting neglected a little which is upsetting as I love writing this little blog of mine and hope to get it more noticed. I don't want to be the next blogger with a book deal and giving up my job but I would like to get a few more readers and sustain a better traffic flow and talk with more PR people. I want to write more risky topics about family life, you know the stuff that most people won't mention in case it paints them in a bad light. I'm currently working on a piece about swearing in front and at your children and if it actually makes a difference to them, I don't think it does if I'm honest.

So that is all I just wanted to get something out there something that says I'm ok I'm still here but I'm just run down and have no time. I have a few reviews coming up and a giveaway.

Tuesday, 4 April 2017

Weekly Meal Plan: 03/04/2017

I wasn't aware that this post didn't go live when it was scheduled to, got to love technology!
This week I have joined the Gym which is something I really needed to do as my medical issues seem to come down to the extra weight I have. I'm not going to lie having a doctor tell you you have these problems because you are fat is very hurtful, I'm also really angry about this! Not that I was called fat I can take that I'm not delusional I'm angry because although I'm overweight I'm not extremely overweight. I weigh just over 13 stone and wear a size 14 personally I don't think that is too bad considering I also had a baby 7 months ago. Anyway enough about my flab take a look at what I eating this week.


Monday: Roast chicken, mash potatoes veg and gravy
Tuesday: Jacket potato cheese and beans
Wednesday: Spag bowl
Thursday: Chicken Kiev with pasta in sauce
Friday: Salad with grilled turkey
Saturday: Pizza
Sunday: Sausage, mash and yorkie puds!

Sunday, 2 April 2017

Temple Spa Offers

So if you read my post a few weeks back you may know that I have become a consultant for Temple Spa, if you didn't read it then you can have a read here. In this post I wanted to just give you all a look at this month's great offers and also I'm giving you an opportunity to win Silent Night which is a collection of calming products to help relax and induce sleep.
I will first tell you about what we have on offer this month:
Windows Of The Soul is on offer this month if you buy one (£29) you get one free. This eye gel-cream is amazing (see before and after below) now this is a really good deal and is expected to sell out quickly so please do get your orders in ASAP!!


Something I am offering this month is the chance to buy a collection which are only ever offered when you attend a Temple Spa class. To purchase one of these collections you would have to message me through my facebook page as they will not be available through my website because as stated they are only offered through a class. The collections are a great way to get you started with the products and with a skin regime, if you don't already have one that is. Each of the collections are heavily discounted too which is great and they all come with a freebie!

Super Starter Collection 
Value £99 Save £30 Pay £69
Choose any cleanser get toning essence moisturiser and then you get any mask for free. You can choose to upgrade where you would get Trufflesque free instead of the other mask and you would pay £92 for this.
Radiance Collection 
Value £149 Save £40 Pay £109
With this collection you would get two Windows Of The Soul but only this month. This collection contains my favourite product free which is Repose. 
It's All About Me Collection 
Value £248 Save £83 Pay £165
This collection offers the best discount and contains everything you need to keep your skin looking amazing and you feeling refreshed and relaxed. With this you get any cleaner, mask and moisturiser free. 

If you fancy a chance at getting the Silent Night gift set then all you need to do is purchase any product from my Temple Spa website (www.templespa.com/jadebremner) it needs to be my website otherwise I will not be able to verify your purchase and enter you into the draw. If you would like to purchase a collection you will need to do this through me via my facebook page or leave me a comment below with your email address and I will email you. Once you have made your purchase just fill out the rafflecoptor form and you will be added into the draw. 

For any information on any of the products, hosting classes or becoming a consultant then please just ask. I wish you all good luck. 


a Rafflecopter giveaway

T's & C's: The giveaway will end at midnight on 30th April. To be entered into the draw you must have made a purchase on www.templespa.com/jadebremner and not via the mainstream website. Additional purchases can be made. The winner will be selected at random via rafflecoptor and will then be notified by email within 48 hours. The prize will be sent straight to the winner (if out of stock the winner will be informed and an alternative supplied) there is NO cash alternative. UK residents only. 

Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Do Children Benefit From Pets?

Every child dreams of their perfect pet, a dog or a cat are normally one of the ones that they ask for. I always wanted a dog the cats, rabbits and hamsters just weren't good enough for me. Jared always asks for a pony, something I would love to get for him but I just can't afford the up keep. I think that having a pet is a great benefit for children and an even greater benefit if it is an animal of their choice.

Educational Benefit's
Animals are a great way for children to learn, after all one of the first things we teach our children is animal noises! There have been various studies involving children and dogs, one of the studies had shown that children had lower stress levels when around the dog rather than the adults. I know that Jared would rather read a story to the dog then to anyone else. A wide range of animals are also used to aid teaching children with learning difficulties, near to where I live there is a farm where you can visit and they have many helpers who have a disability. Every time we have been the helpers have been very hands on with the animals and they love to tell you all about the animals.

Responsibility
Any pet comes with responsibility from cleaning the cage to feeding the fish there is always something. When I used to ask for pets I was always told that I would be responsible for either the feeding or cleaning it depended on what I was getting. I think having a pet is a great way to get children of all ages to have some responsibility, in our home Jared is responsible for feeding Rosie (our dog) I fill the cup up and he puts it in her bowl and checks to make sure she has enough water. Soon we are getting fish which he will also be in charge of feeding.

Health Benefits
There are so many ways a pet can improve anyone's health. If you have a pet that needs walking or riding then the obvious benefit is that your child will be getting more exercise. In the eyes of my son taking the dog for a walk is seen as exciting because she runs about and plays with him, if I just said shall we go for a walk there would be a grumble or two. Other health benefits include calming anxiety, stress and even lowering the chances of developing certain allergies. Some studies have even suggested that babies and young children who live in a home with cats and dogs could have a lower chance of having asthma.

Development
Although this could fall into the same category as educational I felt it needed a section of it's own. As we grow older there is so much that we need to learn and develop, relationships, emotions, social skills etc. The relationship we often tend to build with our pets is friendship, we see them as a friend that we care for and in return they will just listen to us. They can also help with building new friendships, if Jared is playing ball with Rosie we will often get other children wanting to play too. Dogs aren't the only pets to spark a friendship an old neighbour once had a snake and instantly conversation started. When it comes to our emotions if we have a cuddly pet we are more likely to confide in them, I know my dog has licked away many of my tears.

There are so many more benefits but I don't want to ramble on instead have a look at all these super cute children with there pets.

 With thanks to the following for sharing their pictures: Hollie from www.thriftymum.com, Sarah from www.amundanelife.co.uk, Jen Mellor, Jaymee Heaton, Kate from www.modernmum.net, Jessica Harvey, Emma Jane, Jamie Speed, Sam from www.myminimonkeys.blog, Jo Dunlop.


Monday, 27 March 2017

Weekly Meal Plan: 27/03/2017

The past week has been a busy one, I'm sure each week is getting busier. The meal plan went to plan last week which is great!! Eryn is really enjoying the food too (if it blends she eats it). This morning I had a Doctors appointment and it was great results looks like I have another medical issue to add to the list, meaning joining a Gym and getting as fit as possible is now top priority. So what are we eating this week:


Monday: Slow cooked beef with mash, carrots and peas.
Tuesday: Feta cheese pasta with jerk chicken.
Wednesday: Meatballs in a homemade sauce with spaghetti.
Thursday: Healthy fry up (yes it is possible).
Friday: Turkey skewers with homemade chips.
Saturday: Chilli with rice.
Sunday: Beef and bean hotpot.

Monday, 20 March 2017

Weekly Meal Plan: 20/03/2017

So I missed last weeks meal plan due to Eryn-Rose having really bad chicken pox, we were referred to hospital. Thankfully all was well and she is now fine and chicken pox free! Last week was a nightmare food wise anyway as I couldn't go shopping I couldn't do a lot if I'm honest, however I still managed a loss at Slimming World (I've no idea how). This week I plan to get back on Slimming World and eat myself slim so here is what we are eating this week.


Monday: Meatballs with spaghetti 
Tuesday: Steak with chips, corn on the cob and homemade coleslaw
Wednesday: Curry with rice
Thursday: Jacket Potato
Friday: BBQ chicken wings with egg fried rice
Saturday: Chicken Kievs with pasta 
Sunday: Roast dinner

Thursday, 16 March 2017

Temple Spa My Beginning

I have recently stepped (big step) out of my comfort zone and joined Temple Spa as a consultant. I'm not one of those people who would normally do anything like this but a lot has changed for me recently, I want more time with my children and I want the anxiety of going to work to leave me alone. Now I know this will not be easy and my aim is to continue working my full time job and slowly reduce my hours as my Temple Spa journey grows. 


The first time I had ever heard of Temple Spa was when I went to my first ever class, I had a browse online before I went. At the class we got to try the luxury products and have a really lovely night pampering ourselves. I can't afford to go for facials but I did worry about my skin ending up looking crap in the years to come, with two kids I'm always last on the list when it comes to caring. That night was the night I fell in love with a few products and the idea of being able to give myself something lovely and relaxing and not break my bank. The consultant asked if anyone would be interested in joining Temple Spa as a consultant, of course I was interested. I wanted to give people the knowledge of Temple Spa and there products and love them, I know what you are thinking all I want to do is sell it. No! I want people to try it experience it and love the products then buy them because they want them not because they feel they have to. 

If you have never heard of Temple Spa then in brief they are a British company formed by a married couple, Mark and Liz. They had both worked in the skincare industry for 35 years with brands like Virgin Vie and Body Shop Colourings. They had been renewing their vows in the Mediterranean and noticed that the Mediterranean people had really good skin, when they arrived back home they worked with a team of dermatologists to find out how their skin was so good. Long story short they found that the diet of the Mediterranean people contained so much fresh fruit and veg and they found a way to bottle that up and deliver it to you in beautifully smelling skin care products. 
Your body is a living temple. 
Honour it, enjoy your life, and live it to the full. 

Healthy Glow & Velvelutto part of the Red Carpet Collection
Aside from the actual products another thing I love about Temple Spa is that it is Cruelty Free which is a huge plus. There is a product suitable for everyone and many are vegan friendly so I have been telling my vegan friends about this. If you live in the Yorkshire area then I'd be happy to come and teach you and a group of friends a class, if you live further away I can send a sample out to you do an online consultation and recommend the best products for your skin or I can get in touch with your local consultant for you to book your class in with them. You can visit my Temple Spa Facebook Page which I update with product information and exclusive offers which are not on the generic website, or you can visit my Temple Spa website and place an order through there. 


Friday, 10 March 2017

George The Orphan Crow and the Creature's Of Blossom Valley

After his parents are killed, George, the Orphan Crow, starts a new life among the lively creatures of Blossom Valley and the enchanting butterflies that live there. But all is not as it seems...
an evil ladybird, envious of the butterflies beauty lures them to a remote place with a wicked plan in mind. George becomes suspicious and flies out looking for them. But is he too late? Has the wicked ladybird already put her plan into action? This Original, intriguing story is mainly told by the colourful characters that make up the community and will fascinate readers of all ages. 

Author: Helen Fox
Pages:131
Audience: ages 9+

The start of this story begins with George losing his mum and dad. The way his parents die fits well with the setting of the story which I feel gives a connection. When I'm reading I always like to feel some connection of truth or feeling of yeah that could happen. As with all woodland based stories there is an owl who is always there to help (will there ever be a villain owl) and he tells George of Blossom Valley. George arrives at Blossom Valley and everything is amazing but then there is this ladybird who is the bad guy. When I write these reviews I never like to say to much about the story as what is the point of me telling you about it if you want to read it? 

The story is short and I finished it in two days, I would have finished it in one but I have kids and barely any spare time so this was a reading in bed mission for me. I feel this could of been two stories if I'm honest, the story of George becoming an Orphan and then the story of George going to Blossom Valley. I found because George became an Orphan so quickly and I hadn't read about his life with his family that it didn't feel like he was an Orphan (I hope that make's sense to you). I wanted to know about his life with his mum and dad and have some kind of emotional connection with him. The story of Blossom Valley I though was good.

My sister also read this she is 11 and here is what she had to say about it. I wouldn't of picked this book up because the front cover looked to adult and like something I wouldn't like. I think it would of been nice to have a drawn cover (she did draw one but I can't share that because it was rubbish). I did like the book but some of the names I didn't know how to pronounce so I just gave them different names, George was easy though. I liked how I could picture what everything looked liked and I wish that I could visit Blossom Valley because I think it would be a nice place to go. I liked how all the animals and insects were sort of a family.  

Thursday, 9 March 2017

Oh My Blog March

Oh My Blog is a monthly interview series, where fellow bloggers come together to answer a series of questions on a specific theme. This is a chance to get acquainted with a whole range of bloggers, some of whom you may not have heard of before, and learn a little more about them! You can read lasts month's here which featured the lovely Jade from mummies waiting. 

This month the theme is mum's (Mother's Day is coming 26th March) and we're hosting Gem from Life is Knutts.


1. Introduce us to your mum. What’s her name? What does she do? Reveal her age if you dare!
My mum is a Supermum. I would literally be lost without her. Her name is Janet and she is (shhhh) 60. Age is but a number.


2. What’s the one thing your mum always used to say to you?
“Three. More. Mouthfuls”.
Urgh, I hated eating as a kid and I can vividly recall my mum saying this to me almost every mealtime. Now I am a parent, I can completely understand how annoying it is when one of your kids won’t eat so I sympathise with her completely. That said, at the time I just wanted to launch my plate at the wall...


3. Someone’s playing your mum in a film. Who is it and why?
Julie Walters. I love Julie Walters anyway but my cousin is also adamant my mum looks like her so it would have to be lovely Jules.


4. She’s won the lottery. What’s the first thing your mum buys for herself?
Goodness me. That is a tough one. I would say a holiday. Life is all about experiences, not things, so I am pretty sure she would get on the computer and book herself a nice holiday somewhere like the Maldives.


5. What embarrassing story about you does she always tell when you meet new people?
She doesn’t do that to me, thank goodness! Honestly, she is an utter legend my mum and hasn’t ever said anything to make me feel awkward in front of people. I told you she is ace...


6. What are your plans for Mother’s Day this year?
Probably a family dinner where my husband cooks and me and mum clean it all up. Standard. We might manage a walk somewhere if the weather is ok.


7. What’s her favourite TV show at the moment?
Call the Midwife. She really loves it.


8. What’s the biggest or most important thing that your mum inspired you to do?
Be kind, thoughtful and work hard. My mum genuinely is a lovely person, and I like to think that some of her personality has rubbed off on me. She is such a
wonderful mum and Nanny to my kids - if I can end up being half as wonderful as she is I’ll be very happy.


9. Your round at the bar! What’s your mum drinking?
Mum has a newfound love for cocktails. She would probably be sipping on a Pornstar Martini (passionfruit and vodka...yummers!) given half the chance. Failing that Prosecco or Champagne, but nothing too dry.


10. What’s the biggest different between you and your mum?
Hmmm. I’m not sure! We are really alike in a lot of ways. I would say I am more creative than mum in that I like playing instruments, crafting, baking. Mum seems to think she isn’t creative but I beg to differ.


11. Most important question of the lot. What is your mum’s stance on 50 Shades of Grey? Does she love it? Hate it? Not even know what it is?
Hahahaha!!! She knows what it is, but I am 99% sure she hasn’t read it or watched it. She isn’t a prude but isn’t really into books and films like that. I think they’re a bit crap too as it goes (sorry 50 Shades lovers!)


12. What’s your favourite memory of your mum?
Seeing her face when she met her first Grandchild. I have loads of lovely memories of my mum but I can vividly recall her holding Luke for the first time and seeing the emotion on her face. It’s so lovely and something I will never forget.


13. What do you think your mum was like as a kid?
Quiet. Shy. Nervous. My mum had a very tough start in life and was estranged from her parents from a young age. They weren’t very nice people sadly and she deserved a hell of a lot better. Thankfully she has an amazing Auntie and Uncle who treated her like their own and she met my Dad when she was 16 and he then looked after her. She has done incredibly well despite an awful start in life and I am very proud of her.


14. Cast your mind back a bit; what was the thing you did as a child or teenager that made your mum the angriest she has ever been with you?
I recall trying to get a fountain pen to work in my newly decorated bedroom by shaking it...with the lid off. Needless to say the ink had, unbeknownst to me, splattered all over my new wallpaper and curtains. She was really not impressed but knew my Dad would be even madder so allowed me to stick some posters on the wall. I am pretty sure he doesn’t know about that until this day. Let’s hope he doesn’t read this eh?! Hahahaha!!


15. Finally, what’s the BEST piece of advice your mum ever gave to you?
Have a go. She has always encouraged me to try things, never said no to me attempting something new and has always been supportive. What more could you ask for?! I am truly a very lucky girl to have a mum like Janet. Love you lots like Jelly Tots Mum.xxx

If you enjoyed getting to know Gem and her Mum, you should definitely head over to her blog and social media to find out even more!


Blog: http://lifeisknutts.com
Twitter: www.twitter.com/lifeisknutts
Facebook: www.facebook.com/lifeisknutts
Instagram: www.instagram.com/lifeisknutts
Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/lifeisknutts
Youtube: www.youtube.com/channel/UC8fwnFZdEesP-fg3VbTNiWg
Oh My Blog!

Wednesday, 8 March 2017

Nutribullet Baby Food Processor

Babies are so expensive! You spend money on nice clothes for them and they either drop food down the front (because even a bib doesn't catch it all) which leaves a stain or just when you think all is fine they decide to be sick. I've found that a lot of baby food that you purchase in jars stain, in fact I'm half tempted to dye clothes with it as they change colour that well.

One way that I can keep from the bright orange foods is to make them myself. I toyed with the idea and looked for all sorts of blenders then looked at storage pots that needed to be freezable. I nearly gave up and just stuck with jar foods and stain removers (which don't always work) then we were sent the Nutribullet baby food processor. I must admit I never knew this existed and I googled baby food processors for hours. 


When the processor arrived I was like a child on Christmas Day I wanted to just start blending everything and anything. I managed to control my urge and thought it would be best to look at the manual first then have a look through the recipe book that comes with it. As Eryn-Rose had already started eating jar foods I knew that she liked strong flavoured foods and opted to make her cauliflower cheese, I placed one portion into one the super cute jars and then placed some in the freezing storage tray. I now wanted to blend more. I dashed out to the shops and bought some fruit, after all she needed a pudding. We chose something simple strawberries and banana again I placed one portion into a jar and the rest into the freezable tray. 


On the happy little jars there is a dial where you can put the date that you have made up that batch or defrosted, which is really handy because I can never remember and end up wasting loads of food. The tray where you place your food that you want to store is also great, there are two that come with it both have lids which is brilliant if you batch make your food. When using the food processor I would advise that you cook all your food thoroughly, make sure veg are soft as it is easier to blend I find with some foods it's best to add a bit of liquid. For example I made Eryn-Rose potatoes, vegetable's and a Yorkshire pudding and added a bit of gravy not just for taste but to help with blending. With fruit it is a bit different as they are soft and have their own juices to help them whizz round. Eryn-Rose is still on smooth puree's and this processor creates puree's as smooth as silk, there is a pulsing setting that can create textured foods. I have tried this out and I think it is going to take some time to master but I will get there. Another really good point that I would like to mention is that I've found it great for when we are going out for the day, most of the baby food jars are glass and I always fear that it will smash so we take extra in an extra bag (I'm a cautious person). With this I pop the lightweight happy jars into her changing bag and pack a spoon, when it comes to heating her food whilst out I try and avoid microwaves and use hot water and a cup/jug. 


I really love that I'm making Eryn-Rose's food, I feel happy knowing that she is enjoying food that I know is free from lots of added extras. I've found it easier to find out what foods she enjoys and also cheaper to keep her belly full. As she grows I will make her smoothies (something her brother currently wants). I would love it if you could share with me some of your babies fav foods.