Monday, 13 October 2014

REVIEW: Johnson's Baby First Touch Products

I received a range of the new Johnson's Baby First Touch products and here's how I got on with them...

As a user of Johnson's products already, I was keen to try the new range with my little man, Marley. I've always been a fan of Johnson's even when my eldest son was a baby.

The new First Touch range is specifically designed for a newborn baby's sensitive, fresh skin. It's mild and fragrance free to ensure your baby's skin is left feeling soft and nourished.

Newborn skin is around a third thinner than adult skin and loses moisture quicker, making them more susceptible to dryness and irritation and in need of extra care to protect their skin’s natural defences. In fact the study of 540 first time mums found that almost two thirds (62%) said their baby experienced dry or sensitive skin, over half (51%) experienced redness or a rash, and almost a quarter (24%) suffered from cradle cap or dandruff.  

Johnson's Baby First Touch All-in-one Wash

Having tried this in Marley's bath, I found it to be very gentle on his skin and it was easy to use and left his skin soft and smooth.

Johnson's Baby First Touch Shampoo

Again, having tried this when giving Marley a bath, I found this was easy to use  and very kind on my son's delicate skin. It was clearly mild on his eyes too, as there was no crying when it got near. It left his hair feeling silky smooth and extremely soft.

Johnson's Baby First Touch Moisturising Lotion

I've been using the moisturising lotion on Marley daily and it leaves his skin feeling quenched and soft.

Johnson's Baby First Touch Oil

When Marley is in a good mood after his bath, I like to use oil to massage him, it helps calm him down and make him comforted and relaxed. The oil is easy to use and my son seems to love the feel of it on his skin.

Johnson's Baby First Touch Barrier Cream

My son has suffered from nappy rash on several occasions and I have to treat it with cream, but I love the new barrier cream that helps form an instant barrier to protect against it happening in the first place. After using this a few times, I've found that it's very effective and it is something I will continue to use on a regular base, after all, prevention is better than cure! It's easy to use and seemed to last for a reasonable amount of time.

Johnson's Baby First Touch Wipes

Babies get through a lot of wipes. Be it cleaning up a nappy mess, or a bit of sick after a burp or maybe just a dribbly chin, wipes come in very handy. I love the gentle touch of these wipes and they are very effective in use, they do the job they are supposed to do. They are thick enough that they do not tear when using, they are nice and strong.

Overall, I am very pleased with the new range of Johnson's products and I will continue to use them in future.

REVIEW: Elastoplast Aqua Protect

I received 2 boxes of the new Elastoplast Aqua Protect plasters to review and here are my thoughts on them...

Well, in typical child fashion, within a couple of days of receiving them, my son had done himself an injury and hurt his elbow requiring a plaster - unfortunate for him, but also a good review opportunity (well, he will mess around!) :P

I've had the opportunity to use one myself. I like that they are thin and therefore breatheable. They are definitely waterproof and they stay stuck on well when you're washing your hands. They are 100% waterproof and they lived up to their claims.

The plasters come in a variety of sizes, so suitable for various places on the body and you can get a pack that is specifically designed for hands.

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

REVIEW: Cadbury Chips Ahoy!

I was sent 2 big bars of the new Cadbury Chips Ahoy! Cookie for review and this is what I thought...

Well, I received good size 120g sharing bars and being a big fan of Cadbury chocolate, I couldn't wait to dig in and try their latest invention!

Basically, they are scrumptious chocolatey goodness in the middle with cookie pieces and coated in delicious Cadbury milk chocolate.

The chocolate inside was very silky and smooth and very, very tasty and I think there were just enough cookie pieces in it to make it tasty but not too biscuity.

It's really delicious, and having biscuit in, turns it into a tasty and filling snack and it's a great sharer at home watching television or a film.

REVIEW: Legoland Discovery Centre Manchester

I was offered the opportunity to visit and review Legoland Discover Centre in Manchester on 28th September...

Me & Paul (hubby) took our eldest son, David (12) and my sister, Latisha (also 12) - and our new little man, Marley (2 months) came along for the ride too.

Sadly, we quickly found that Legoland is aimed at younger children than David & Latisha, but too old for Marley. I'd say it was aimed at 2-8 year olds ideally. I think Marley will love it when he's older and we'll definitely be taking him back when he is old enough.

We were greeted by Professor Brick-A-Brack, who did a fantastically sterling job of continuing his welcoming, despite the fact that it was clearly aimed at children younger than David & Latisha. I think a bunch of little kids would absolutely love meeting Professor Brick-A-Brack on the Lego Factory Tour and learning about the Legoo (yes, really, the Legoo) process! We got a souvenir piece of Lego each :)

After that, we went on the Kingdom Quest Laser Ride. It was quite slow (again aimed at younger kids), but it was good fun shooting the spiders and things :) Marley was fascinated by the lights and colours!

Next we went to Miniland which was good - the mini buildings are fantastically made. One of my personal favourites was the working mini rollercoaster! David & Latisha had fun playing Lego table football against each other!

While it wasn't really designed for their age, David & Latisha made the most of their time (and their love of Lego!) while we were there. They had fun building and racing their Lego cars in the Lego Racers: Build & Test area. Paul even took the opportunity to get in on that one!

Next we went to the 4D cinema and saw Lego Legends Of Chima - it was a very good experience with very realistic coming at your effects and good smoke effects etc. Marley tried out the glasses too...

Me & Paul sat for a cup of coffee and to feed Marley while David & Latisha went off to do their own thing for a bit - they went on the Merlin's Apprentice Ride - they both enjoyed it!

They visited the Master Model Builder where they got to build a boat, which you can then purchase afterwards but they chose not to.

We finished off by going to Lego Ninjago Laser Training Camp which was actually good fun - I had a go as well as David and Latisha :P It was actually quite difficult but I did better than both of them!

As I said, while it wasn't really suited to their age, they made the most of it and enjoyed it anyway and we will definitely be returning, likely on Marley's 2nd or 3rd birthday!

It's great value at just £9.95-14.95 per ticket when booked in advance online at the Legoland Discovery Centre website, children 2 years old and under get to visit for FREE as well! And for just £12 midweek, a parent AND toddler can visit!

Wednesday, 1 October 2014

NEWS: Aldi SpecialBuys - Halloween Range

Well, today it's the 1st of October and we're just 30 days away from Halloween! By now, you're probably thinking what outfits you're going to get for yourself or your kids, right? Maybe trying to plan some suitable foods for an Halloween party? Or maybe just looking for some great accessories to complete your Halloween?

Well tomorrow, Thursday 2nd October, Aldi gets their new range of Halloween outfits, accessories and food in store on their Thursday SpecialBuys... They are only available while stocks last, so be sure to get your Halloween stuff in early! 

They have a range of children's costumes for a bargain £3.99 each:

Girls' designs
  • Catsuit, Bright Witch or Spider Ballgown
  • 3-8 years
Boys' designs
  • Skeleton or Dracula
  • 3-8 years
Unisex design
  • Spider Tabard
  • 3-5 years

Children's Dressing Up Set

They have a range of adults costumes for just £7.99 each:

Men's Dracula Design (M/L or L/XL)
Ladies' Skeleton Dress, Witch or Vampire (S/M or M/L)

They have a great range of other Halloween stuff too:

Coloured Hair Spray £2.99 for a 125ml can

Children's Halloween Tights £1.29 per pair

Glowsticks £2.99 for a pack of 6

Pumpkin Carving Kit £2.99

LED Tealight Holders £1.99 each

Halloween DVDs £3.99 each

Assorted Partyware 99p per pack

Halloween/Spooky Sprinkles 79p for 61/62g

Wychwood Beers of Character £14.99 for 12x 500ml bottles

Pumpking Ale 99p for a 500ml bottle

Something I just love the look of for the Halloween table this year is their Halloween sausages! They look great and are £1.39 for 380g!

Halloween Sausages

Sunday, 20 July 2014

My David: All Grown Up

Well, as you all know by now, we welcomed a new addition to our family on 9th July 2014. But this post is all about my oldest son starting his new chapter...

David is 11 years old, I've still thought of him as my "little" boy until recently. He started going to and coming home from school himself this year, even now he's done it loads, I'm still a worrier, and if you're a parent too, I'm sure you can sympathise. He suddenly looked a lot bigger when Marley was born though!

On 18th July 2014, David finished at primary school - I'm finding it hard to believe that my "little" boy is all grown up. It feels like time flies. It doesn't feel so long ago he was my first born new little baby, then before I knew it he was a toddler. When that chapter was over, he was starting nursery school, I remember how distraught he was on his first day of nursery - he didn't want to let go of me and it was really hard to walk away and leave him there. Then he left nursery school and started full-time school, primary school, yet another chapter of his life. Each year of primary school feels like it has come and gone so fast! And now he's off to senior school in September, starting yet another chapter of his life! I'm normally quite unemotional, but his leavers assembly almost brought a tear to my eye!

2006 Nursery at Windsor Street C.P. School 
2008 Reception at St. Silas C. of E. School

2009 Yr 1 at St. Silas C. of E. School

2010 Yr 2 at St. Silas C. of E. School
2014 - Playing "Teenage Kicks" on their ukeleles at the Yr 6 Leavers Assembly

Whist he doesn't show it, he must be on an emotional rollercoaster at the moment, leaving primary school, leaving most of his old friends behind and everything that has been so familiar to him combined with a new surprise baby brother in his life and going from being an only child for almost 12 years, to having to share his Mum and Dad with a new little baby that demands lots of care and attention.

He's been very mature with all the changes and I tell him, but I'm not sure he realises just how proud of him I am. He's a wonderful young man that would make any mother proud. He's intelligent, helpful, caring, loving, kind, considerate and a million other wonderful things all rolled into one.

I know he can do well at senior school and I look forward to seeing him mature into an adult, even if I do find it hard to see my "little" boy grow up. I've told him no matter how old he gets, he's never too old to be exempt from a hug!



At the moment, he says he wants to be an architect, so he's got a long road to go yet, even if to me it all feels like it flies by! He knows he has my support in anything and everything he does. So now just to watch him grow up even more...

Monday, 14 July 2014

A Surprise Delivery! Meet Marley Paul...

For those of you that don't already know, we had a rather surprise delivery "turn up" on 9th July...

Meet Marley Paul, born on 9th July 2014, weighing 7lbs 2oz...

I did not know I was even pregnant! I've felt really ill for quite a long time, but never put any of it down to the fact that I might be pregnant! I felt really ill overnight, lots of stomach pains and feeling ill, I was feeling so bad, I was getting ready to go to the walk-in centre when they opened at 7am, but it was only 3am at this point. By 4am, I'd got very bad and at around 5.30am, Paul called an ambulance as I was screaming out in agony. But about 5-10 mins after calling, I experienced the worst bit of pain and a rather strange sensation - I got Paul to look what had happened and I think his exact words were "Fuck! It's a baby!" - obviously not what we were expecting. Basically, I was really worried what was wrong with me and by that point, Paul was panicking too, but neither of us expected that! So we had an amazing shock as you can imagine! David was in his bedroom and he was really upset and worried about me too - imagine his surprise when Paul raced up to tell him not to worry and he had a new baby brother!!

Our little family of 3 turned into a family of 4 overnight! The ambulance crew were as shocked as we were when they arrived to find a baby! Paul had called my Mum to look after David when he'd called for an ambulance, so imagine her shock too when he rang back moments later to tell her it was actually a baby! Basically everyone, not least of all me and Paul were in total shock!

The following 24 hours were totally surreal. It was like being in some sort of dreamland. I went from worrying what was wrong with me and being in agony, to sitting in a hospital bed with a newborn baby that we didn't even know was coming. I could see him, hold him, feed him, but it didn't really feel real. It started to feel a little more real on Thursday and even more so by Friday. We brought him home from the hospital on Friday night night. It's nice to be back home now - I was so fed up being stuck in the hospital for 3 days!

I've read about stuff like this in magazines and always thought to myself, how could someone NOT know they were pregnant, but now I know exactly how it feels! So, you're wondering HOW could I not know? Let me explain...

Well, in general, I suffer from ill health, so feeling unwell wasn't unusual. Since our other son was born in 2002, I've had extremely irregular periods, so infrequent in fact, that 6-12 months in between getting one was not unheard of for me, so again, no alarm bells there. I didn't have a massive weight gain, and what weight I did gain, I put down to the fact that I was so ill and not able to get out and get regular exercise, so again, no real clues there. From the "symptoms" I was having, it could've been any number of things. I probably should have visited the doctor sooner, especially as I had felt worse recently, but like I said previously, I am ill quite often with various, so didn't think too much of it. The symptoms I felt may have related to some sort of bowel problem like IBS or IBD. Over the last week, I'd had some twinges in my stomach, but again, I'd put that down to some sort of stomach problem. I had severe back pain in the last week too, but again, I just put this down to some sort of stomach/bowel problem and was going to go to the doctors about it. Basically, there was nothing that made me think it could possibly be down to pregnancy! In fact, in light of the fact that my periods were so sporadic to the point of virtually non-existent, I doubted that it was even possible for my to get pregnant and as David is now 11 years old and my periods had been virtually non-existent since he was born, that just made me think it even more. So there you have it, how I didn't know I was pregnant!

Anyway, me & Paul are really happy, we had never discounted having other children, but we both doubted that it was possible. It would've been nice for him to have been planned in that at least that way we'd have been prepared in terms of having stuff for him! As it was, we didn't have a single baby thing at the ready! But he is a very welcome addition to the family and his big brother David (whilst still in shock, I think) is very happy with his new baby brother. It must have been even more difficult for him to take in than it was for us, but he's been very grown up about it all and he's taken an active interest in him and likes helping out - we've been making a big effort to get him involved too to make the transition easier for him. He's very helpful too and I'm very proud of how mature he has been but I can only imagine how daunting it is to him.

All the family have been fantastic. My Mum and the older of my 2 younger sisters, Yasmin were absolutely fantastic, dashing around and buying us loads of stuff and all the essentials we needed as we had quite literally nothing ready for a baby (unsurprisingly). My other little sister, Latisha is made up - she seems to like being an Aunty again - I'm sure it feels more like being an Aunty this time, because it's a bit strange how she is David's Aunty but is the same age!

Paul's parents live in Winchester, so they will be coming up to visit in the next month and meet their newest Grandson.

It's Monday now, we're all still getting used to being a family of four, it still doesn't feel quite real to be honest, a bit like I feel asleep Tuesday and I'm dreaming or woke up in a parallel universe! Enjoying every minute of being a new Mum again though and enjoying being back with David & Paul.

I'll leave you now with some pics of Marley Paul...

Thursday, 12 June 2014

World Cup 2014

Well, with the impending World Cup 2014 in Brazil this year, I just had to do a blog post about it. I'm a MASSIVE football fan and it'd be a sacrilege for me not to!

I'm a lifelong Liverpool FC fan, but in the World Cup, I am all in for Brazil - yes, I am from England, but let's face it, they're a pretty rubbish team and I much prefer the skill and flare of the Brazilian players, so made an informed decision that I wished to support Brazil.

It was my Uncle's fault I got into football. I grew up living with my Mum, my Uncle and my Grandma. My Mum and Grandma had no interest in football (though my Mum calls herself an Everton supporter - "BOOOOO"!), but David (my Uncle) is a big Liverpool FC fan too and always watched the matches on telly and I watched with him. I used to play football with him too, I really enjoyed the sport, I was a bit of a tomboy as a little girl. At about 11 years old, I outgrew my tomboy stage and became very feminine, but my love of football never went away. I still loved to watch football and play football, including playing for the girls team at school. It was something I was very enthusiastic about and still am.

My son, David, is also a Liverpool FC fan, but he supports England in the World Cup (well, someone has to, I suppose!). Hubby, Paul, isn't much of a footy fan (much to my dismay). Paul and David have been to a couple of Liverpool matches though, thanks to a lovely friend on Twitter giving me some tickets she won and on a separate occasion was thanks to my comping hobby and I won some tickets myself. Sadly, I've never been to a Liverpool match myself :( I know it's very unlikely I'll ever get to see a Brazil match either :( David might one day get to go to an England match though. He'd have loved to have been a mascot for Liverpool or England, but he's 11½ now and at the absolute maximum, the cut-off age for mascots seems to be 12 years old. I should have discovered competitions to be a mascot sooner than in the last year (I've only been comping for 3½ years overall though).

Anyway, I thought I'd compile my own World Cup 2014 dream team and share it with you:

And I also will be playing lots of fantasy World Cup football, so I'll post my league details here, and I hope to see some of you come and join me and see who wins :) I'm also going to post up some links to World Cup related competitions and other fun stuff too...

Win £300 Cash - Peachy's World Cup Predictor
Win £500 Cash - Totesport's World Cup Predictor
Win £10,000 Cash - Football Fanager Fantasy World Cup (join my league: FB Twitter MRB)
Win £1,000 Bet - Bet McLean  World Cup Predictor
Win £1,000 Bet - Betfred World Cup Predictor
Win Various Prizes - Bet Vernon
Win £100 Cash - Bets Of Mates
Win £40,000 Cash - Sun Brazil Dream Team (join my league: ID - 8204770 PASSWORD - Blurby)
Various Prizes - RedSpottedHanky (join my league: ID - FB, Twitter & MRB PASSWORD - Blurb2014)
Win 1/50 Speaker Pillows - The Bedding Company
Win Ice-World Watch - Ice-Watch

Collect your FIFA World Cup Brasil 2014 Stickers - Panini/FIFA (join my collector's team: ID - 333003 PASSWORD - AlienNation)

Who are you supporting in the World Cup and why do you support them? Would love to hear from other football fans, male and female :)

Friday, 23 May 2014

Get a FREE Graze Snack Box

Free Graze Box

Have you heard of Graze yet? They offer delicious, personalised snack boxes that are tasty and simply better! They are all hand-picked and there is a huge variety to choose from as well.

Now, they are offering you your first Graze box for FREE - no cost to you at all (you must be a new customer), worth £3.99. Posted out to your home or office for you to enjoy at your leisure - if you would like to take advantage of this FREE offer, click on the banner above or click here.