Wednesday, 24 June 2009
Wednesday, 17 June 2009
Who knew that a one-year and two week old Little Miss could throw a temper tantrum? Where did my placid, cheerful, mostly agreeable daughter go? The explosion can be triggered by many different things and depending on the severity of the situation, the result can be any and all of the following:
- Sitting down forcefully on bum and crossing arms over chest
- Fully pursed lips and a rather angry glare
- Fully pursed lips, a lift of the chin & forceful shake of the head
- Protest slump- when you manage to pick her up, she goes slack and limp which makes carrying her nearly impossible.
- Swiping of formerly crossed arms to push you away
- "No, No, No!"
- Throwing back of the head & fiercely arching her back- when done while being carried, it's very difficult to stop her from hurling herself from your grasp
- The "SHE'S ABUSING ME!" cry
Triggers can include, but are not limited to:
- not reading a book for the seventh time in a row
- attempting to remove Sippy Cup/Dog's toy/Ball/Alfie (V-Tech bear) from tiny grasp
- peeling her off Daddy when he leaves for work
- re-installing her in her pushchair/highchair/Smart Trike after having a taste of freedom
As challenging and frustrating as this is, I love that my daughter is so clever and independent at such a young age. Because I have been her constant care-giver from day one and have hardly spent more than two hours away from her at a time, I worried that she would be too much of a Mummy's girl. I needn't have worried! This is one head-strong Little Miss that we have and I'm proud of her every day. I do worry a bit for what's to come but I can't wait to see what our not-so-Little Miss has in store for us!
Tuesday, 16 June 2009
Monday, 15 June 2009
It seems that I am making some impact in the blogging world...I'm on someone's list to TAG! Ooh...I feel just like I'm back in school and I've been picked by the Cool Team! Laura at Are We Nearly There Yet Mummy has tagged me so I'm doing as I'm told...I am a good girl after all. I'll add my 8 bloggers to tag at the end!
THE RULES ARE:
1) Mention the person who tagged you (done)
2) Complete the list of 8’s
3) Tag 8 others and let them know (I'm going to break the rules here)
So here goes…..
8 Things I’m looking forward to
1. Father's Day...hoping my pressie from Little Miss to Daddy turns out right
2. A trip back to the US in October for my brother's wedding
3. Trialing Tumble Tots with my Little Miss
4. More sunshine
5. Getting more time to expand the blog
6. My family coming to England for Christmas
7. Talking to my sister-in-law when they get settled in Australia
8. Getting some money from Child Tax Credit!
8 Things I did yesterday.
1. Attended another 1st Birthday Party
2. Took pictures of my Little Miss swimming for the 1st time in in-laws pool
3. Cried because I couldn't fit into the swimsuit I thought I would fit into
4. Had a day-long headache
5. Posted a blog entry
6. Wished I could have been at the BMB meetup
7. Kissed my husband
8. Laughed with my daughter
8 Things I wish I could do
1. Afford to get my Little Miss some great outdoor toys
2. Bake and ice a Victoria Sponge cake
3. Cook Chinese!
4. Enjoy exercising
5. Get a new computer...all this blogging and a rubbish laptop to do it on
6. See my family in the US more often
7. Speak French fluently- I can get by pretty well but have an in-depth conversation? Non!
8. Take one of my BRILLIANT IDEAS and make it happen
8 favourite fruits
8 Places I’d like to travel
1. South of France
3. New Zealand
8 Places I’ve lived
1. Eau Claire, Wisconsin, USA
2. Decatur, Illinois, USA
3. Lancaster, California, USA
4. Peoria, Illinois, USA
5. Hopkins, Minnesota, USA
6. Chicago, Illinois, USA
7. Caen, France
8. Northborough, England
And here are the 4 Blogs I'm tagging to carry on the trend (you're supposed to tag 8 but I don't want to burden too many people!). Sorry...and good luck!
Wife of Bold
A Modern Mother
Perfectly Happy Mum
Sunday, 14 June 2009
Tuesday, 9 June 2009
Silver Cross Halo
- Looks- The Halo is very sleek and stylish. It looks cool and a bit flash as well as the Halo frame is a brushed steel finish. The canopy adds a touch of Silver Cross nostalgia. It reminded me of the traditional pram canopies. This will suit all the Yummy Mummies out there looking for a modern, light-weight pushchair for busy days.
- Initial Set-Up- As stated above, the assembly of the Halo was very simple and straightforward and within 5 minutes of taking it out of the box it was good to go. The instructions manuals, should you need them, are very user friendly with both a WORDS manual and PICTURE manual for all of you visual learners, myself included!
- Canopy- The canopy secures into place with a latch on either side which makes it feel more sturdy than some other pushchair canopies. There is a brilliant tinted, plastic "window" which hangs off the front of the canopy to provide more than adequate face protection from the sun.
- Seat- The seat seems very comfortable (wish I could feel for myself but I'm not wee enough!) and has a bit of give to it- almost like shock absorbers! My Little Miss sits up nice and straight and has the pleasure of being able to see out to either side. In our current lightweight 3-wheeler pushchair, she's in more of a "sling" which makes seeing out a bit limited. My favourite feature of the seat is the extendable leg rest. Simply lift under the leg part of the seat and pull out a u-shaped bar which very adequately supports the legs making the ride very comfortable. Little Miss' legs are no longer hanging from the knee! She looks like she's lounging in an easy chair in the Halo!
- Smooth ride- The ride seems very smooth and easy. We went around a park and market town and found the ride very seamless. The pushchair itself, despite being classified as a LIGHTWEIGHT pushchair, feels very stable and solid. Some lightweight pushchairs feel as if they could blow away in a stiff breeze- not the Halo!
- Recline feature- The Halo can be reclined to virtually flat and as stated above, has a nice give or shock absorbing quality. The reclining was very smooth and gentle which is vital when trying to keep a sleeping child asleep. It was also very easy to raise the seat back when my daughter was awake. Her current pushchair sees me struggling mightily to raise her to the full upright position when she's in it. Not so with the Halo. The canopy comes down at the back when the seat is reclined which offers excellent protection from the elements and keeps your child cocooned nicely when you need them to be.
- Folding Mechansim- The mechanism is a bit awkward as you have to push in a button on the right latch and lift both the left and right latches to fold the Halo down. I struggled the first few times but after it's been done several times it becomes easier. It just requires a bit of coordination. There is also a carry handle under the seat in order to lift and transport the folded Halo- I did find this handle a bit too small. It is difficult to fit your hand in comfortably and I think a man would struggle even more.
- Canopy- While the canopy is brilliant, there is no viewing window to see your child! In order to see your child when the canopy is down you have to peek around the side to see them. Not the worst thing in the world but I would prefer to peep at them from above.
- Handle- The handle seemed a bit hard and was a bit high for me personally (I am 5'3"). This higher handle made going up and down kerbs a bit tricky as I didn't have the same leverage as with my current pushchair. The handle could use a bit of padding as I do a lot of long walks and my hands would bear the brunt of it, I fear.
- Lack of Storage- There is no storage basket, per se, but there are criss-crossing "bungee" cords that attach to a shelf under the seat. I was able to attach my changing back to the frame and set it on the shelf under the seat which worked very well.
On the whole, I found the Silver Cross Halo to be a very stylish, sleek and smooth pushchair. I think most Mummies would be very pleased to add this item to their arsenal. Thank you to Silver Cross and Amy Johnston for the opportunity to review both the Silver Cross Halo and Doodle. They are welcome additions to our family. Little Miss says "Thanks...I love 'em!"
Lightweight, folding pushchair and travel system ideal from birth to toddler.
Exceptional protection and flexibility.
Super compact and will fit in the boot of a mini.
Converts to a complete travel system with the Ventura car seat.
The Halo comes complete with a seat liner, footmuff, rain cover and cargo net.
“This product is perfect if you want a great looking, durable and compact buggy – and in addition, it will be the only buggy you need to buy. It is just as suited to new born babies as it is to toddlers and older children.
“The Halo is so compact, when folded it will fit in the boot of a mini!”
PriceHalo buggy retails at £275
Sunday, 7 June 2009
Saturday, 6 June 2009
I've been given an amazing opportunity! I joined a FABULOUS blogging group called British Mummy Bloggers and through one of the groups I have been given a chance to review 2 Silver Cross Products. Silver Cross was founded by William Wilson in 1877. Silver Cross first began designing transport for babies back in 1877. It all began when former postman William Wilson combined his ideas for an innovative spring suspension systemwith a handy reversible hood, and invented the modern pram. It was truly revolutionary, and was duly patented followed by over 30 more design patents filed in his prolific lifetime.
Royal approval in the 1900s ensured a special place for Silver Cross in the nation’s heart. Since the very first Silver Cross pram, every new idea, every smart design, every improvement in manufacturing, every single change has been a response to the changing needs of parents, babies and children. Those of you who aren't living in the UK...think about the stereotypical British Nanny pushing a pram through the park, it was probably a Silver Cross. They have become very popular in the US amongst celebrities. They are gorgeous things! But Silver Cross has come into the 21st century as well with some brilliant products such as the DOODLE- a sleek, modern-yet-retro high chair that most children will be happy to eat their meals in. When I received the Doodle, I tore into the box (with minor difficulty as there was some industrial strength glue keeping it shut!). There were five separate parts- the table, seat, tray, legs and basket/cupholders. The manual had very clever instructions- one which had just PICTURES and one which had WRITTEN instructions. I chose PICTURES...I like pictures! The assembly was very straightforward and the entire thing was put together in about 10 minutes without tools. The Doodle is very sleek in appearance and will fit very well in a modern kitchen/home. The Doodle comes in 3 colours- apple, stone and lilac; we got lilac. I was very impressed with the tray as it has a magnetic removable feeding tray. When broken down, the high chair converts into a table and chair for your DOODLER and has a removable basket in the middle of the table and 4 crayon cups which fit into the high chair leg notches. I feel that the table has an additional feature- a handy, safe and sturdy coffee table for the adults when the kids are in bed! I wouldn't worry about my Little Miss running around the lounge with the Doodle table in place either as it's round and the material would be very forgiving to small body parts if bumped into. So, we assembled the Doodle in all of 10 minutes and later installed the Doodle in the kitchen to be used by Little Miss in the morning. I was pleasantly surprised that the Doodle actually took up less space than our current high chair (a Chicco).
When our newly-1-year-old Little Miss was given the opportunity to road test the Doodle, she was immediately drawn to the magnetic tray. Within 10 seconds, however, Little Miss had removed said magnetic feeding tray and dropped it on the ground. She's certainly clever but I was a bit surprised that she managed to sort out the magnets so quickly. We later learned that the magnets also attract metal silverware! Little Miss has just started using a fork and lo and behold, the fork stuck right to the tray when placed over one of the magnets. Interesting way to keep the silverware off the floor, for sure! The tray is a bit tricky to adjust when using one hand (which as Mummies we often are) due to the flipper paddles which need to be depressed to open and close the tray. One criticism of the tray- the magnetic feeding tray is very slick which makes a great launching pad for cups or bits of food. Little Miss has talent in this area. It would be good to have a cupholder as well for this reason. The seat seems very comfortable and is extremely easy to wipe clean. The smoothness of the design also makes cleaning a breeze...no nooks and crannies for Cheerios, bananas and yogurt to crawl into. The straps are simple to adjust and leave a lot of growing room. I found Little Miss sat up very nicely in the chair and seemed much more secure in the seat than in her current high chair. She seems very happy in the Doodle in it's high chair form. We look forward to trying as a Doodle Art Table. Due to our busy week and weekend of First Birthday parties, Little Miss has to take it easy. We'll Doodle next week. We were very happy to welcome this product into our home as we call our Little Miss Doodle or Doodles for her nickname. How coindidental! I would recommend this product to anyone particularly because it will grow with your child and would be a good investment piece. It's functional, good-looking and durable- all things that are a must with a growing family. We'll be Doodling for some time to come. Please review the information below for more specifics about the Doodle courtesy of Silver Cross. Check out Silver Cross at www.silvercross.co.uk . Thanks for reading...let me know what you think of the Doodle!
Doodle Key information
Doodle is a handy high chair for meal times, but once you break it down, it also provides a low chair complete with table for playtimes.
It can be used with the tray attached when in high chair mode or detached when using the table.
Comes with fully adjustable and removable feeding trays that are dishwasher safe, a five-point safety harness, toy basket, crayon cups and removable, easy-clean seat pads.
“However, the thing that sets the Doodle apart from other high chairs, is the fact that within seconds it converts to a table and chair with crayon cups and a toy storage basket, creating the perfect place for your budding artists to get creative!”
Thursday, 4 June 2009
Wednesday, 3 June 2009
Tuesday, 2 June 2009
Sunday, 31 May 2009
As I type, Little Miss is toodling around the lounge after waking at 5:39am. This is our life. The joy that is Little Miss almost always begins in the 5 o'clock hour. And while that hour is moderately offensive, what a joy she is when we bring her into bed with us. Usually it begins with a rattling of the bars (chicka-chicka-chicka) and then a bit of chatter followed by "Dada...Dada??". Dada does usually get up to get her (after a bit of a "Your daughter is calling you" prod). "Dada!!!" she calls out when the door opens...how precious! Would that we could all wake up so happy! Depending on the ridiculousness of the hour, we might try to lay her down between us in an attempt to get a few more minutes shut eye but more often than not it's play time. We have a lovely routine, really. During the week, Dada gets up with Little Miss for an hour before he needs to get ready for work and that's where I can have a little flash back to those days of Lie In's...those 45 minutes extra kip are so nice. On the days where I get up with Little Miss, do I grumble just a bit in a nostalgic moment for the days when I knew nothing of ridiculous o'clock or birdsong? Honestly, yes...but the face of my gorgeous daughter, the squeeze around the neck and little voice which happily says "Mama" as we leave the room makes ridiculous o'clock the best time of the day.
Friday, 29 May 2009
Wednesday, 27 May 2009
"How are you?"..."Fine!" Real answer = "Miserable really...I'm hungry, feel fat and ugly and you have bad breath!"
The author of this article was even manipulated by her 10-year-old daughter, who, knowing that her mother couldn't tell a lie, asked her questions like "When did you lose your virginity?" The mum answered "None of your business" which wasn't specifically a lie but just avoiding the truth. So, could you make it through an entire day without telling a lie? I know I'd find it tricky. You might very well succeed in p***ing off a lot of people. Which, I think is why we do tell "little white lies". Do passers-by or aquaintances really want to know how you are? Do we want to totally knock a friend for six when she asks, "Am I over-reacting to this?"? Do we want to crush our child's spirit by telling them that the real reason we are not buying the sweets in the store is because we can't afford it? No!!! We want to keep the world a happy place. Reality bites, after all. And, it also is a way to get our children, in particular, to do what we'd like them to do. I remember when I was a little girl, my mother told me that if I ever hit her, I'd be arrested! We lived across the road from the town chief of police so I knew that if I hit my Mummy, he'd come a-knockin'. Obviously a blatent lie (I think!) but she achieved her goal. Frightening me into good behaviour! What lies have you told to your husband/significant other? The list could be long, couldn't it? Ultimately I don't think the little white lies are the ones which hurt. In fact, they are probably the ones which keep the ball of life rolling smoothly. Do we want to know the truth? I don't think I do! I like living in my rosey world where everything is "fine". How 'bout you?
Feel free to share your favourite WHITE LIE...to hubby, mum, children or friends. I'd love to learn some new ones!
Cheers for now!
Sunday, 24 May 2009
1) Start a walking group in your neck of the woods.
2) Share with me- how much weight did you gain? how much weight did you lose? how did you do it? keys to success? recipes for attainment of the goal?
3) Who was your fitness/post-baby role model? What famous person or not-so-famous person inspired you? (Anyone who says Katie Price/Jordan better have a brilliant reason)
4) Tell us a funny memory from your pregnancy
Thanks for playing! I look forward to reading and please, if you don't mind, pass on this site to your Mummy friends. I think they'll like you even more for it! Cheers for now!
Also...is there anyone out there reading this thing? I still can't figure out how to get my blog out there more? Considering that I'm running this site through blogger, it's obvious that I don't have money. Thanks for any feedback in advance...what do you think about my blog after all? Like to see anything in particular RELATING TO BABIES, PARENTING and SIMILAR TOPICS?? Do tell...I'll do my best to make it happen. If it doesn't require too much technology, that is! Cheers for now...
Saturday, 23 May 2009
Thursday, 21 May 2009
Hugs and Kisses...must go to bed now (or let them think that's what I'm doing!).
Wednesday, 20 May 2009
(The other Apprentice team chose a birthing pool and luxury rocking horse costing £1500 to hawk at the Baby Show...wonder why they lost??)
Monday, 18 May 2009
Saturday, 16 May 2009
Ta for now...
Cheers for now!
Friday, 15 May 2009
1) Pushchair/Stroller/Travel System Extraordinaire:
There are so many TRAVEL SYSTEMS out there that run into the many £ or $ and very well may be the priciest items on your list. You know what...you don't really need it! Yes, of course, you need a car seat and you need a push chair/stroller but does it all really have to come in one SYSTEM??? NO!!! My travel system has been sitting in our garage for the last 7 months (my daughter is 11months). Of course it was useful but it was also GIANT and HEAVY and barely fit into the boot/trunk of our car without having to pop the wheels off. My humble recommendation is to get a Group 0+ car seat, preferably with an ISO-fix base (for ease of snapping in and out and not having to fumble with the seat belt. Purchase a pushchair separately that FITS YOUR NEEDS! Most pushchairs have the ability to fully recline which is important for newborns so find something LIGHTWEIGHT, fully collapsable, stylish and sturdy. PERSONALLY, our second pushchair purchase was the Baby Jogger City Mini (in green if you must know). Our Little Miss was 5 months old when we began using it and it's been a godsend. It weight 17 lbs, folds with a pull of one strap and one hand and is really comfortable (so says Little Miss). I highly recommend them! Again, a travel system is most definitely useful- we have used everything in ours- BUT, it has been sitting unused for the last 7 months, gathering dust and taking up space in a very cluttered garage.
2) Reusable Nappies:
I was going to be Wonder Eco-Mom! I didn't want to add to the overfull landfills, did I? We could manage doing the laundry every single night and drying nappies for ages, couldn't we? Well...it turns out we couldn't. Well, in fairness, I couldn't but I was changing 90% of the nappies anyway, wasn't I? Our Little Miss was not very little when she was born but she was still too little for the nappies. And, her belly button took quite a while to totally heal/dry up (6 weeks). When I tried the reusable nappies one day on her I was amazed. She doubled in size in the bum region and I found it difficult to fit her clothes on her giant padded bum! The absorbancy of the nappies was so great that I couldn't tell when she'd done a poo (the smell never got to me!) so she sat in one for longer than I like! It wasn't nice! And, she was WET, WET, WET! There's no WICKING with reusables. I didn't want my baby's bum wet like that every time she did a wee! So, the £140 paid was a waste. Yes, I could have persevered and I am sure other better mummies will tell me so, BUT, it was far easier, Little Miss was far more comfortable and isn't that what we all long for in a newborn's life. Realise that you don't have to be Wonder Mum...it's OK to break down and use disposables. My daughter's generation can hate me for it but I imagine they'll be doing the same.
3) Nursery Accessories:
Cot Bumpers...no need for them and in fact, they can be a hazard particularly when your child is able to pull themselves up in their crib. They'll use them as a launching step!
Bedding...really, with the popularity of Gro-Bags/Sleeping Bags, the only REAL necessity is a fitted sheet for your mattress. A light-weight blanket is good when it's particularly chilly but having lots of sheets and duvets/comforters/blankets/pillows is not necessary. Children won't need proper sheets/blankets/duvets until they are in a BIG KID bed and are over the age of 2. It's pretty and lovely and matchy-matchy but it's an expense you don't really need!
I do recommend investing in a good mobile that attaches to the crib. There are models that have remote controls which is good for middle of the night/early morning wakers. Our Little Miss would stare happily at hers for a long time. It had characters that rotated, a changing light source and lullabies which played. I didn't really care for the lullabies as they were rather "tinkly" but it's something that your baby might like.
4) Swings and Things:
Some babies like 'em and some babies don't! It would be rather unfortunate if you invested a fair whack into an all-seeing, all-juggling baby swing and then after putting Little Miss/Mister in it, find out he/she hates it! Not every baby wants to be rocked, vibrated and sung to. Try a simple bouncy chair! No bells, no whistles, just one he/she is strapped into and maybe has a toy bar...you'd be amazed how much enjoyment they get out of just gently bouncing under their own power. I could put my Little Miss in hers and put it next to my bath in the mornings...she'd happily sit there while I had 10 minutes to make myself human. I was lucky to have it!
If you're investing in an activity gym, aim for one that "grows" with them. It would be adjustable as they grow and change and need more tummy time or even sitting time! Not everything has to be educational...just fun and interesting does the trick most of the time!
My Little Miss has awoken from the longest nap of her life so I must go tend to her. Please feel free to add or subtract from the list above. I hope it helps and maybe lightens your load in your trolley at your next visit to the Baby Warehouse-a-Rama! Good luck!
Cheers for now!
Thursday, 14 May 2009
I hate to say it (please don't be mean) but my Little Miss has only had one PROPER cold however we have been plagued with teething symptoms for the last 5 months! But I do believe this one is a proper cold finally although thankfully her nasal drainage (that sounds posh) is still clear and she's readily accepting my wiping her nose incessantly. She even found humour in the nasal aspirator and drops! So I don't have to hold her down screaming and kicking any more! I'm just wondering if anyone has any home remedies, recommendations or suggestions for surviving colds in our precious babies. I've tried one recommended remedy but I don't know if it works for sure- smells nice though:
Get a mentholated rub (Vicks, CalRub, etc) and rub in on their FEET when putting them to bed in their sleep suits. Supposedly the warmth of the body causes the vapors to drift upwards through the night. My Little Miss has had this tested on her but I can't tell if it really is making any difference.
In the UK, over-the-counter cough and cold remedies have been newly cautioned. It seems that generally, these remedies don't really do much and giving them willy-nilly to under 2's in particular, can inadvisable. I'm not keen to rely on medication for my 11-month old so only in REAL instances of obvious discomfort or fever do I dose with Calpol (UK equivalent to Children's Tylenol). I'd love to hear what you might have tried, what works for you, what doesn't and how you survive! Thanks for sharing!
Cheers! - K
Yesterday, Mummy took me to Nanny and Grandad's for a while while she ran errands (so she says...she probably went home and took a nap!). I had so much to do! I chased the birdies from the garden, played with my piggy, walked around and around the kitchen, pet Sinjin, ate some yogurt (spilled some of it on my shirt...Mummy noticed!) and moussaka and got rather hyper! When Mummy got back I was right in the middle of chasing Piggy...she spoils all the fun. She tried to make me take a nap but I had other plans! But then, after a while, I started to feel a bit snotty! Grandad had a cold, you see, and I think he gave it to me. Gosh, a lot of junk comes out of your nose, doesn't it?? Mummy keeps wiping and wiping- I HATE that! So, as revenge, I kept waking up last night and finally she gave in and took me in the front bedroom and slept with me in the BIG bed! I love that! I might give her a break today...naaaa. It's good to keep Mummy on her toes. I made Daddy get up before 6am today...Mummy was too tired from being up most of the night with me so she was very happy when Daddy finally got out of bed to take me downstairs. We'll see how much more torture I can bring to their day. Hope you enjoyed my first installment. Ta for now...
Love, Little Miss
Wednesday, 13 May 2009
1) Highlight topics of interest to me and other mummies
2) Provide a forum to share ideas, tricks, tips, recipes and problems
3) Promote area events/locations/family friendly cafés, restaurants and shops
4) Give you food for thought
5) Brighten your day!
I'm no expert but I am a mummy to a gorgeous 11-month old baby who teaches me something new every day. I won't claim to know everything nor am I necessarily right about anything but I do have a voice and I like to use it every now and then. It is my hope that you will visit often, find things of value and share this outlet with your friends. You don't have to live near me to benefit from this blog...you just might have to miss out on some of the local goings-on! I will do my level best to post regularly and keep on top of what's what! Share what you can, be open to new ideas and be the best mummy you can be!