Monday, 22 September 2014

Review: Panda Soft Drinks

I have fond memories of panda pops back when I was at school. They were one of my favourite treats from our local shop, usually on the walk back from school. Well the iconic drink has made a comeback! The new range consists of still juice drinks, flavoured waters and squashes. The still juice drinks come in raspberry and blackcurrant flavours, the flavoured water comes in orange & pineapple and blackcurrant flavours and the squash comes in either tropical or summer fruits flavours.

We were sent samples of the blackcurrant flavour Panda Splash flavoured water to try out. The 250ml bottles make them ideal for lunchboxes, picnics or even just to keep in your bag as a handy drink whilst out and about.

I love the handy size of the panda pop drinks. At £1.99 for a pack of six they are great value for money. They have a very refreshing taste meaning when the kids had finished drinking theirs they didn't ask for more straight away like they do with many other drinks but it was their first choice when they wanted another drink. I also like that they only contain natural flavours with no added sugar.

We have actually bought Panda drinks a few times since being sent these samples. They have become a favourite with all of us especially the bottles of squash. Although Gracie doesn't yet take lunches to school, it'll be our first choice for a lunchbox drink.

Panda Still juice and Panda Splash are available to buy at Asda, Tesco and Ocado. Panda squash is sold in Tesco costing 99p for a 1 litre bottle.

we were sent samples of the item featured for the purpose of this review. All opinions are my own.

Saturday, 20 September 2014

Review: Shnuggle Baby Bath

A few months back I was offered the chance to review the fantastic new baby bath from Shnuggle. All I had to wait for was baby! The Shnuggle bath is no ordinary baby bath, not only is it beautifully designed but it is very cleverly thought out to support baby at bath time. The bath is made from a soft and tactile baby safe foam making it both warm and soft to touch. It is kinder to baby's skin with great insulation that keeps the water warmer for longer. The material is a super-strong polypropylene foam, which is extremely lightweight and durable. The best feature about the bath is the bum, bump and back support which aims to make baby feel safe and secure and avoids the slipping and sliding that is common with many other baby baths.

Like I said I have waited a long time to try this out and was it worth the wait? In all honesty it definitely was! As anyone who has ever bathed a newborn baby before will know, they are quite slippery and the Shnuggle bath really makes it easier to hold them without difficulty and it must be comfy as every time we have used it Elsie has immediately relaxed and fallen straight to sleep. It especially made it easy for me to bath her without help post c-section, which I would have struggled with using any other bath.  I love how you don't need a large amount of water in the bath due to the shape and size making it easy to carry when filling and emptying. The water definitely stays warm longer meaning I can let her stay in there a little longer while she's enjoying it! I've never known a small baby who loves their baths as much as she does.

The only downside of course is the fact it is only suitable until around six months for most babies (dependent on size) but the majority of people will be happy to bath a baby in the main household bath by six months. I know we will be happy to do so.

This is definitely one of those products you don't know you need until you try it! I certainly wouldn't be without it now and will be recommending to all my friends and family. 

The Shnuggle baby bath comes in five pastel colours; Ocean, Mint, Pearl, Buttercup and Rose and is  available to buy on the Shnuggle Online Store for £30.

You can catch up with the latest news from Shnuggle on their social media pages below.

Shnuggle Official Twitter Page
Shnuggle Official Facebook Page

I was sent the product featured free of charge for the purpose of this review. All opinions are my own.

Monday, 15 September 2014

Join Us on 18/09/2014 for a #SofiasMicroWorld Twitter Party

This Thursday we will be hosting a magical Sofia The First Twitter party. With the help of Gracie, Zach and a few of their friends we will be testing out the new range of Sofia The First micro playsets.

There will be party food fit for a prince or princess and royal party games and activities. You can see all the fun and have the chance to win fantastic prizes by following and tweeting with the hashtag #SofiasMicroWorld. Don't forget to follow @CarlyMarkham1 @DisneyJuniorUK and @UKMumstv so you don't miss anything!

If you can't wait until Thursday for some fun with Princess Sofia you can find plenty of fun Sofia activities and games on

Also if you do miss out on the party I will be reviewing the toys on my blog too so you can have a read about what we think very soon.

Friday, 5 September 2014

Bringing Home The Baby!

We've been home a few days now. The past week has been pretty crazy! I can't quite believe my baby is over a week old already. I am so glad to have her home she's certainly worried us the first few days. 

I said in my birth announcement that I would explain more when I'm home. The reason we were kept in hospital wasn't too bad but was still worrying to us as parents. The day we were set to be discharged they found that she has a heart murmur which I'm told isn't rare but is something they would like to keep an eye on. As well as the heart murmur she suddenly started losing weight and this has been our big issue. Just 48 hours after being born she had lost 11% of her birthweight and so we had to stay until she put some back on. 

We finally arrived home Saturday afternoon and were just getting settled when Monday morning she had lost weight again and we were sent to children's A&E where she had lots of blood tests and as well as now losing 13% of her birthweight, her blood sugar levels were very low and so we ended up back in hospital again. Now I felt major guilt over her weight problems as I have been breastfeeding and as my milk still hasn't come in she wasn't getting enough. I was worried I was doing something wrong and felt like I had failed her completely. I now realise I was being silly and the staff on the children's ward were a huge help when it came to preparing a feeding routine that suits us and actually saw her putting small amounts of weight back on. It does mean that I am topping up her feeds with formula at the moment but I am hoping to stop that once I have enough milk myself for her. 

Anyway we are now home and she is putting on weight slowly. The kids absolutely adore her. She couldn't have fitted into our little family any better! She even has a name now. 

Say Hi to Elsie!

Thursday, 28 August 2014

Birth Announcement: Introducing...

On 27th August 2014, we welcomed our new baby girl to the world. 

8lb 5oz
Still nameless!

Unfortunately I can't take her home just yet and have awful signal in hospital so will update more when we are allowed home.


Wednesday, 27 August 2014

What's in my hospital bag?

This time round I have known all along that I would be having a c-section. This made it much easier to pack exactly what I need. My aim this time was not to overpack like I did the last two times. So what have I packed in my hospital bag? You can see here;

For Me:
PJ's and nightie
Breastfeeding top
Nursing Bra
Breast pads
Maternity Towels
Disposable Briefs (fantastic for after a csection)
Arnicare cream for any bruising
Nipple Cream
Lip balm
Apple Juice
Snacks- cereal bars/sweets/biscuits

For Baby
Mix of sleepsuits in different sizes; one for a smaller baby, the rest up to 3 months, *TIP* take a footless suit incase you have a long baby.
3 knitted cardigans
Knitted blanket
Knitted booties
Muslin Squares
Water Wipes ( it's not easy fetching water for cotton wool after a section)
Around 12 Nappies
A dummy (just incase)

I'm using a holdall with wheels to make it easier when leaving post op. I'm bound to have forgotten something but I'm sure I have the essentials. If not I always have Andy to fetch things for me.

Did you overpack your hospital bag? What packed items did you find useful/pointless when it came to using them?

Monday, 25 August 2014

You Know You Are Pregnant When...

  • The smell of your once favourite foods are enough to leave your head in the toilet bowl.

  • Your handbag now consists of a big book of maternity notes, enough vitamins to set up a pharmacy and an empty wee sample pot at all times.

  • You can't help crying at just about EVERYTHING!

  • Painting your toe nails or attempting any kind of hair removal from your lady parts or legs suddenly becomes impossible.

  • You have to resort to doing up your favourite jeans with a hair bobble, IF you can get them around your new found thunder thighs that is.

  • At least once you have a terrified stranger ask 'You are pregnant aren't you?'.

  • The best use of any 'Me time' becomes having a nap (this doesn't go away once baby arrives).

  • Family members suddenly think it is ok to tell you what forms of contraception you can use once baby arrives (as if you do not know this already) (worse third time round when they all tell you about the miracle they call sterilisation).

  • You can no longer sleep without the need to wrap your legs around a bunch of pillows or the duvet (much to your partners dissatisfaction).

  • You have at least once woken up horrified to have had inappropriate dreams about a friend or acquaintance. OR

  • You have woken up gutted to find you didn't in fact get lucky with Chris Hemsworth that night. Damn it!

  • Just a laugh or sneeze leaves you at great risk of peeing yourself.

  • You find yourself actually WANTING to bleach every surface in the house for fun.