Friday, 1 August 2014

Friday Favourites #4

Crikey, I almost forgot to write my Friday Favourites post up today! Lucky I remembered, eh? So what have I been loving this week?

Don't blame me if you want to buy ALL THE BOOKS after visiting Beth's blog. Her reviews on her blog and Goodreads statuses that pop up on my Facebook newsfeed are seriously bad for my bank balance.

Mel's Kindle Bargains posts can also be seriously dangerous for my bank balance.

Rebecca's Don't Feel Guilty post is a must read - don't put too much stress on yourself!

This is turning into quite a bookish post! Sandra's July Books roundup has given me some new books to read!

Rachel's post about how she promotes her blog was an interesting read!

I love Laura's post about her summer bucket list plus Max is SO cute!

Kerry revealed the gender of her baby over here

I also thought I would also introduce something new to Friday Favourites - Blog Of The Week. My choice this week?

What have been your favourite posts of the last week? Have you got a favourite blog?

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Thursday, 31 July 2014

Visit Essex | Win With Rural Escapes

This is a sponsored post.

For years and years, my uncle and aunt had discussed moving to Essex, preferably somewhere near Clacton. Not prepared to uproot their family until education was finished with and they were financially sound, they finally made the move two years ago whilst my cousins remained here in Herts/Beds in their respective jobs and new homes.

Of course, this now means I can have what is essentially a free holiday whenever I want. Both my aunt and uncle are now retired and have said we can stay in their house for free - all we would need to contribute is money for food and any entertainment! I haven't visited Essex for a good few years now - not since I was pregnant with Jack and took a day trip down to Clacton and Walton-on-the-Naze with Steve so visiting them is always such a treat!

My family live in Holland-On-Sea which is just outside of Clacton. All the hustle and bustle is just down the road but for a little more peace and quiet in rural Essex, Holland-On-Sea is perfect. With several independent shops, numerous pubs and plenty of beaches with facilities for bathing and boating, it is perfect for families looking to spend some time away from the coastal towns it is famous for. We love to spend time at the beaches and sample the food Holland On Sea has to offer. 

Visit Essex are currently running a campaign called Rural Escapes (you can find it here) where users have to explore a map of Essex and answer a simple question about rural Essex to enter. Prizes include gold & spa breaks and a short break for up to 10 people. But act quick, the competition closes on the 6th of August!  Why not give it a go? If you do, good luck!

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Henryka Amber & Silver Jewellery | Review

I very rarely get to wear any other jewellery besides my engagement ring. Jack seems to be drawn to any kind of jewellery like a magpie and they inevitably end up lost and/or broken. The record? I bought a necklace for myself thinking he had gone past that stage - ten minutes after receiving it and putting it on, it was broken. So you can imagine I like to keep special jewellery away from his reaches!

He seems to slowly be getting past this stage now so when Henryka asked if I would like to review a product from their range, I was more than happy to - I would love to start building up my jewellery collection again! I picked the gorgeous Green Amber & Silver Small Owl Stood On Branch Pendant with Silver Chain. I really love owls, there is something so beautiful about them so it just had to be that necklace!

The necklace comes packaged in this beautiful little box. I love the intricate detail and the blue colour - anyone will tell you that I love pretty packaging especially when it comes to jewellery! I even try to repurpose boxes when they are no longer needed for jewellery.

With a 16.5" silver fine link chain and such intricate detail, I have been very careful when wearing this i.e not around Jack! That being said, it has stood its ground when subjected to a quick tug from an inquisitive toddler. Henryka are known for offering specialist handcrafted silver and amber jewellery and this is no exception. They have a great selection to choose from - they even have a collection that was created to raise funds for The Princess Trust who donate wigs to children suffering from hair loss.

The necklace itself fits nicely around the neck and although delicate, the necklace certainly is noticeable and I have plenty of compliments on it! I would definitely think about buying more jewellery from fact, I may have put them on my Christmas list for Steve...

Would I recommend Henryka? Most definitely! If you are looking for a special gift for someone, Henryka may just be the place to go. There are reasonable prices (this necklace is just £26!), items are handcrafted and with such a variety of items to choose from (including some gorgeous brooches), you can't go wrong. 

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Product was sent to me for purpose of review

Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Breaking Away In The UK | Competition Entry

I recently mentioned that we had sold our caravan down in Camber Sands. I am sad that we had to do so but needs must and we could barely get down there due to Steve's shifts. That doesn't mean my love for the area is any less though and we will definitely be visiting the area again.

I've grown up holidaying in the UK, especially in East Sussex as has Steve - which is why we bought the caravan at a park down there. Over the years, I have spent many a week in Hastings, Eastbourne or Camber and often took day trips to Bexhill and St Leonards On Sea where my great uncle and aunt used to live. Even if we weren't going on holiday, I would beg my Dad to take us on the train down to Brighton or one of the above for the day so I could breathe in the sea air, play on the pier, run into the sea.

There is something so magical about holidaying in the UK. You feel like you are at home but also away - you recognise things and are familiar with them yet aren't stuck in the same four walls. Camber and Hastings are my two go to places when I want to get away - one for peace and quiet and one for the hustle and bustle of a seaside town.

Camber is perfect for those who just want to relax and visit the beach. They don't necessarily want to do all the touristy stuff but instead take some time out to catch their thoughts. I love Camber for this. There are reasonable amenities (although you have to go into a nearby town for a big shop), a beach and plenty of activities for young and old.

If you are more into the tourist side of things, then Hastings is much more your thing - I love nothing more than visiting the arcades, going down the little back streets to the independent book stores I know and love and sampling the food from one of the many restaurants and cafe's along the sea front. Jack loves taking the little train but he is yet to try the cliff lifts - I loved them when I was younger so I hope Jack feels the same!

East Sussex in general is one of my favourite places in the world. Full of quaint little towns and seaside resorts, it cannot be beaten when it comes to making memories. I still have plenty from when I was young.

UKBreakways are currently running a competition to win £250 cash, just by talking about your favourite UK destinations. You can enter the competition here. This is my entry.

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Why I Am Proud To Be A Parent

Why am I proud to be a parent? I am proud for a number of reasons. My son seems to be learning something new every day - his vocabulary is expanding and I find myself having actual conversations with him; his reading is improving all the time and he knows his numbers up to twenty. He can sing songs and almost keep a tune and he is even trying to write - he tried to write Jack in his Nanny's birthday card and he didn't do a bad job.
I am proud to be a parent because nothing is greater than hearing the love in your child's voice every time they call your name. Knowing that the little person beside you relies on you for everything - from food and warmth to dealing with their tantrums. I'm proud because my little boy loves being in front or behind a camera - he loves to pose but he also has a good eye for a picture and will often bring the camera to me and tell me to 'take a picture, yeah?'

Hugo Boss Kids France Football Shirt - Bjorn Borg 3 Pack Shorts
I am proud that my little boy is trying so hard at potty training that he is more than happy to run around the garden in a t shirt and boxers - sometimes with a nappy, sometimes with a Dry Like Me pad, sometimes with nothing at all. He is getting so good at telling us when he needs to use the toilet or potty that accidents are now few and far between.

I am proud that my little baby seems to be growing up into a kind, gentle and honest little boy and I am proud of the love and compassion he has for others. I wish he could stay this age forever sometimes!

Did you celebrate National Parents Day on the 27th of July? What makes you proud to be a parent?
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Clothes sent as PR sample to help in creation of this post

Britax Travel Tips

I have not been compensated for this post. I am a Britax Mumbassador so will share information from them from time to time.


Mark Bennett, Car Seat Safety Expert from BRITAX explains that as children move to a Group 2/3 stage car seat, safety whilst travelling should remain a key priority.

With many families setting off on journeys in the car this summer, it’s important to run a health check on your car seat to make sure it’s still the perfect fit for your child. This will ensure they are comfy and happy on their journey and you can rest assured that they are safe and secure whilst travelling.

It may feel that only yesterday you were buying your first car seat for your newborn and then just when you were getting to grips with Group 1, the next stage car seat will sneak up on you. Whilst your little one may appear to be a strong big boy or girl as they reach the age of four, keeping them safe whilst travelling is still top priority.

Mark Bennett explains, ‘Many parents are still unaware that it is required by law for children to travel in a car seat until they are 135cm tall or 12 years old - whichever comes first - so the final Group 2-3 stage car seats will see your child from the age of four all the way until they are 12 years of age.

At the age of four or 15 kg, children are old enough to move to a Group 2-3 seat with adult seat belt but this doesn't mean they don't need the same level of protection. Many parents believe children will be safe on a booster cushion, a small platform that lifts them up on the seat, however these are not safe as they do not have the all important side impact protection of deep side wings and a protective headrest.

Mark Bennett has compiled some FAQ's to help parents understand the final Group 2-3 car seat stage and how to choose the seat that’s just right for you and your family.

Q. What is a booster cushion? If they are sold why are they not safe?
At BRITAX, we're always striving to ensure that we offer the maximum protection for your children as they develop. With recent research showing that side collisions are one of the most frequent and fatal types of crashes on the roads*, BRITAX decided to stop selling booster cushions.
Booster cushions are still sold because it is not required by current EU safety standards to conduct tests for side collisions, however if the regulations change, our experts do not believe that any new booster cushions would pass.

Booster cushions are better than no car seat, however they offer no side impact protection. BRITAX recommend a BRITAX 'highback' booster, which offers deep protective side wings and head support. These work to absorb crash forces in the event of a collision whilst protecting the child's head.

Q. How do I know when my little one is ready to move to Group 2-3?
You should move your little one from a Group 1 to a Group 2-3 seat when they reach the weight limit of 18kg, or if their eye-line is higher than the seat's highest point - whichever comes first. This is usually at the age of four years.

Q. Can I buy an XP-PAD to add to my old Group 2-3 seat?
No. The XP-PAD is integrated into the KIDFIX XP SICT.

Q. What actually is the current law when it comes to car seat safety for 4 + year olds?
It is required by law for children to travel in a car seat until they are 135cm tall or approximately 12 years old whichever comes first.

Q. How do you fit a Group 2-3 car seat?
A Group 2-3 car seat can be fitted by ISOFIT, where the child safety seat is attached to the vehicle body with connectors in the same way as ISOFIX. It is classified as ISOFIT rather than ISOFIX as the child is secured by means of the adult 3-point seatbelt. ISOFIX is a term used in Group 0+/1 where the child is secured by means of a five point harness, and the car seat is fitted to the ISOFIX connections points.

Q. How do I know which is the best Group 2-3 seat for my family?
Every family is unique and has different considerations and practicalities to consider when choosing a seat. To help simplify the process, BRITAX has created a unique online tool that assists a parent to identify the right seat for their child and their car. For each seat, Fit FinderTM will also inform the users what seat positions are approved in the vehicle and the appropriate fitting method. You can view the latest Fit FinderTM here

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Tuesday, 29 July 2014

The Lego Movie DVD Giveaway

One of the best films to come out over the past couple of years has to be The Lego Movie. I like it, Steve likes it, Jack loves why not share the love and give you the chance to win your very own copy? I have teamed up with the lovely team over at Cash Generator to give away a copy to you! 

All you have to do to have a chance of winning is answer this question:

In The Lego Movie, what is the name of the protagonist minifigure?

A. Alan Brickton
B. Emmet Brickowski
C. Brick Legostein

Please email your answers to and a winner will be picked at random from those who answer correctly. Good luck.
Any comments left with the answer will be deleted. Winner will be picked using Competition ends at 4pm on the 4th of August. No multiple entries, one entry per household. 
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