Welcome to my blog! I started my blog to let you in on a little bit of my life. My life as me, as a mumma, as a Coeliac and my product reviews.

Wednesday, 16 February 2011

Guest post by Bethany Hoeflich ~ The importance of breastfeeding your toddler

I came across Bethany's insightfull post on facebook when a friend shared the link to it. I could'nt agree more with what she has shared, so I asked her permission to copy it over for you all to read. Due to an annoymoss person who left a negative comment on this i would like to point out a few things... This is in no way,shape or form offering any kind of medical advice. This post is purely one persons positive opinion (of which i agree) on breastfeeding a toddler, showing only the pro's not the con's. Sticking two fingers up at the people who frown upon it. I ask you kindly not to continue reading if you don't accept this!

Thankyou :)


"Why would anyone want to breastfeed a toddler? That's disgusting!"

And yes..that was a comment I got from someone. Unfortunately, many people share that opinion. In the United States, only 11% of babies are breastfed to 12 months. After that, the number drops even more. BUT, there are children who are breastfed. Scientists and anthropologists anticipate that the natural weaning age of humans is 2.5-7 years of age. In most cultures, children continue to enjoy the nursing relationship well past infancy.

So why on earth would someone want to breastfeed a toddler? I'll tell you......

10 Reasons Why You Should breastfeed Your Toddler

1) Convenience. Okay, call it laziness. It's easier to keep breastfeeding than to wean. Plus, nothing can put a toddler to sleep faster than a few minute on the breast. Temper tantrum? Breastfeed! And, toddlers will naturally get some lumps, bumps and scrapes. Instead of struggling to quiet the tears, just pop your toddler on the breast for a few seconds and BAM, problem solved.

2) Less of a need for a lovey. Loveys are wonderful, but they can be lost. Imagine being on a long drive and realizing you left the favorite comfort toy at home, hours away. The very thought can put the fear of God into the hearts of parents everywhere. BUT, considering it's virtually impossible to misplace a breast..... Anyway, having your child attached to you instead of an inanimate object is a HUGE perk.

3) Nutrition. No matter how old your child is, your breast milk will still be perfectly tailored to your child. Plus, toddlers are renowned for being picky. One day, they can't shovel the food in their mouths fast enough. The next day you are practically begging them to eat each bite. No problem. When they are breastfeeding, you can rest easy that they are still getting all the nutrients they need to be healthy (a real bonus when they go a whole week eating nothing but goldfish crackers and chicken nuggets).

4) Immune protection. During the second year of life, the number of antibodies in your milk goes UP. This is understandable, considering they are more mobile as toddlers; getting into everything. So, while your toddler is playing with a snotty-nosed kid, or busy cramming handfuls of sand in his mouth, or sucking on the germy shopping cart handle, you can rest easy knowing that your child will probably not get sick. BUT, if he does, he won't be as sick or sick as long as he would if he had been weaned.

5) Higher IQ. Studies are showing more and more that the longer your breastfeed, the smarter your child is. By breastfeeding into toddlerhood, you can raise your child's IQ by as much as 10 points. This is especially important for children with special needs who are "on the fence", so to speak. For these children, it can mean the difference between functioning and not functioning.

6) Better speech development. The act of breastfeeding is designed to work the muscles of the mouth and jaw that are needed for speech. It is believed that children who are breastfed have better articulation than those that aren't.

7) Preventing dehydration during illness. You know how kids are when they're sick. Forget feeding them...and even getting them to drink is a struggle. BUT, you can always get a toddler to nurse. This can mean the difference between taking them to the hospital for an IV and keeping them home and comfortable.

8) Greater independence. Our society pushes children to be independent WAY before they are ready. Breastfeeding meets your child's dependency needs. Studies prove that children who are breastfed are more independent, confident, secure and, more importantly, more securely attached to their parents. Letting your child breastfeed until he/she is ready to stop helps to foster independence.

9) Breastfeeding burns 500 calories/day without exercising or dieting. Since humans are designed to breastfeed several years, your body stores up several years worth of fat during pregnancy. Breastfeeding is the easiest way to lose the weight.

10) Breastfeeding lowers the mother's chances of getting breast cancer by, on average, 25%. The longer you breastfeed, the lower your chances are of getting breast cancer. Added bonus, breastfeeding a daughter reduces HER chances of getting breast cancer later in life as well.

It's not weird, wrong, perverted, or insane. Breastfeeding into toddlerhood is natural, healthy and extremely handy. Hopefully you will consider nursing a baby into toddlerhood, or at least giving a friend or relative encouragement when they choose to.

Me feeding Lydia on a train (12.5mths old)

Mumma's makes....

As you all know I'm a fan of crafts, sewing and creativity of the mind! I'd like to share with you a few things that I've made, and hopefully inspire you do something to :) I love to re-use and recycle old clothing, turn it into something useful and fun :)

Cookery is another passion, some simple recipes to follow in another blog :)

Baby leg warmers ~ So easy to do and addictive to make! I think i made 4pairs for Lydia. I used normal sized women's socks. For small baby's use kids socks, and large baby's use men's socks :)

There are many other tutorials online if you don't get on with this one :)

Beaded toy/dummy holders ~ I made loads of these. Some for friends and some that people brought off me :) Wooden beads are individually knotted for safety whilst in use, extra toy hoop to attach to buggy etc...

Fabric letters & numbers ~ All of these are made using an old cotton summer dress of mine that got ripped, padded using the guts from a pillow i got at the local 99p store!

(please ignore that the 4&7 are the wrong way around!)

Sock animals, not just monkeys! ~ Abe the monkey was my first attempt at a sock monkey. I was so pleased with the outcome that i decided to get creative! Next came Mr Bunny and then Felix the cat!
Not forgetting my most recent make of Fred the sock-ape! This was lovingly made for my wonderful cousin Sharon of Soft Thistle Photography.

I used more stuffing from the 99p pillow, a washed & dried crisp packet to make the ears crunchy, cotton thread for mouth/nose/shaping of tails etc... and a few heart shaped buttons (sewn on very tightly) for eyes :) Each animal requires nearly 2 socks each, so 1 pair per animal! I've used regular size women's socks, however if you want a smaller one use kids socks and for extra long limbs/tails/ears use over the knee women's socks :)
Get in the £1 shop or Primark for a pack of 5 normal sized women's stripy ones, for only £2!!!!!!! :)

I hand sew again, but here's a machine tutorial to have a go at one yourself:
I had a look at this to see what components i needed and then just made it up as i went along :)

Taggy blanket ~ Again this was made with fabric from my old dress. All the 'tags' are different, i went on a wild rummage throughout the house to make sure of it! They include ribbon from presents, the annoying loops inside of clothing/dressing-gowns, a strap from an old pair of sandals, strap from an old changing bag, the loop off of a box a toy came in and some ribbon i got in a clearance shop for only 10p for 2metres!!!
The blanket measures about 40cmx30cm. I added an extra long pink loop at the top left corner, this is so it can attach to the buggy/a toy/hoop etc....

The only time i manage to make all these are when Lydia has a nap or if i get a few minutes whilst Justin plays/baths/feeds her! Some projects take an age to complete, lol.
I also make cards, jewellery and print onto clothing!

I hope I've inspired you to get creative today, have lots of fun and please share your comments/pictures about what you make/have made :) Remember not to be a perfectionist, just be the best you can :)

Sunday, 13 February 2011

Review: Unbelievabowl set 9mths+

Everyone with a baby know how much fun it is to get a bowl to stay on the highchair when its meal time!
Tracey from Vital Baby wanted to help make this an easier time for me. We were sent an Unbelievabowl to review.

The Unbelievabowl is a regular child's bowl with a difference! It has a suction pad that you fit to the underneath, with a 'double click' lock you know its safe and that your baby won't be able to pick it up and throw it away. This needs to be used on a completely flat surface with a smooth texture (plastic highchair trays are ideal) Rough surfaces will affect the suction.

The Unbelievabowl comes is completely BPA & latex free, suitable for 9mths+, it won the bronze in practical parenting awards 09/10 , its available in three beautiful bright colours and you can buy spare bowls.
Its packaging is also recyclable :)
You can freeze it, microwave it, and its safe in the dishwasher also! Its Unbelievabowl!!!

With interchangeable bowls its really easy to use it constantly without having to faff about re-doing the suction pad between courses at meal time. Finished your main? Change the bowl for pud! Easy :)
Packs of spare bowls are available to buy in the three colours and come in packs of two for extra value.

The suction pad is so strong that when i tried to pull the bowl off, the whole food tray came off with the bowl still attached to it! With much twisting and pushing down (as the instructions say to do so) I managed to get the bowl off, but the suction pad had came off with it. Luckily no food was in the bowl at the time. And now i can't re-attach the suction pad as its stuck inside the bowl, and won't budge? I think you defiantly need 'mussels from brussels' to operate it! :) This only happened once, so i don't think its a major problem.

I was amazed at the strength of the suction and the lock on the bowl.
Lydia was not happy that she couldn't grab it and throw it around, she resorted to trying to bite it off instead!


We tried it with some snacks first. Lydia loved picking them out one by one then putting them back. She was looking under and around the bowl, trying to figure out why it wouldn't move! So funny to watch.
I was worried that if i filled it with baby food (mush!) that she'd constantly be sticking her hands in and out of it. Not something i want to happen where we live, her highchair is in the front room as we have no separate 'dining area'. I don't think daddy would be pleased if the TV ended up wearing her lunch? hehehe.
However if you have the space to allow for much mess then go for it! We will be using ours for snacks until we get a bigger place to live :)

Its priced at £4.99 for the set of one bowl and one suction pad. This did seem a little expensive for one bowl, but its much more than just a bowl. Your buying the suction pad. And once you have this you only need some spare bowls, and a pack of two for £3.99 is very good value. (£2 a bowl!!!!) So for under £10 you'd have 3 bowls that won't budge!!! 

If baby loves to fling their bowls around then i recommend the Unbelievabowl to you! These are available for purchase in many large supermarkets, Boots and online directly from Vital Baby. Many other great items can also be found in their online shop, have a little nosey....

Links to items from Vital Baby;

Sunday, 6 February 2011

There's a lot of fun to be had here....

Me & Lydia

My baby is growing up :( This makes Mumma so very broody!
Especially when both of my brothers wife's are pregnant!!!

She's turned one and is not looking back, she's growing into a cheeky little girl already! First words so far;
  • Woof - when she see's a dog anywhere inc.TV
  • Duck - when holding her rubber bath duck
  • Dog - before she says 'woof'
  • Mum/Mumma/Mummy - varies depending on what she needs from me
  • Daddy/Dad - depends on her mood as to what she calls Justin
  • Mum-nums - this is her own made up word for when she wants milk (mummy's-nummies, lol)
  • Don't - if she doesn't want something i offer her
  • Gone - if she eats everything or i take something off her she's not allowed
  • No -with the shaking of her head (so funny)
  • Ahh - whilst she rests her head on a pillow or hugs a toy/person
  • and some less formed words like cat - 'at', giraffe - 'go'
Also we're having fun with walking! The last week or so she's just been toddling off all around the flat, my little Dora the explorer :) She's in size 3.5G shoes from Clark's, eBay bargains mind you ;p

We've had two accidents so far, not really due to walking, just generally sillyness of my crazy child!
She fell over whilst playing the 'chase-me' game, split that little bit of skin under the top lip (you know where i mean?)
And secondly, this morning she decided to pounce of the sofa at me! She was happily eating her cereal and then leap forward! Her head went into my bowl, her left foot went into my coffee and everything went everywhere! I was not very impressed with this stunt, the rug is ruined! lol. I rushed her straight to have a shower as she had cereal stuck all over her face/hair and milk/coffee all over her clothes! Luckily the coffee was almost cold.

And we have learned to climb stairs also.....

Now about us.
Justin and i had our 6yr anniversary on the 28th January. My parents were baby sitting Lydia so we could go out for a meal.
We didn't manage to get out until gone 8pm, and into town about 8.30pm. It was getting a bit late to eat a fully blown meal so we just had a quick Chinese meal at China China, then a few drinks at The Font. Then we got a bottle of wine, went home and shared it with the folks. We stayed up until about 1am just chatting to them :)

However it was lovely just to be 'us' again, other than 'mum and dad'.
The Font was the first pub we went for drink in together :)
It was our first 'date-night' in around 2-3yrs!!
Hopefully we can get out more now Lydia is bigger.

Us being silly on the bus

Right, monkey is awake after finally napping today! Must go as its snack time, Yummy.

Friday, 4 February 2011

Review: EnVie nursing bras 36G, under-wired vs non-wired

Since the journey began of breastfeeding Lydia, I've found it very difficult to find nursing bras in my size (36G) that were a comfortable yet supportive fit. Within my search i discovered EnVie Lingerie.

The lovely Jane over at EnVie Lingerie was keen to help me. She sent out two bras for me to try. One under-wired and one non-wired.

The first bra, Anita Nursing Bra with underwire 503

Considering i had not worn a wired bra for nearly a year, i found this one to be rather comfortable. It was a great fit, very supportive but not restrictive, and the microfibre fabric was soft & silky against my skin.
With secret support whilst un-clipped, your breast stays shapely and supported whilst breastfeeding.

The bra has a pretty jacquard pattern, and the cups were a generous yet supportive and comfortable fit.
I find the wire in some wired bras to high up or sewn in to tightly, not with this bra. The naturally forming wires in this bra were in the correct place and didn't dig in uncomfortably.
The thick, soft and comfortable band fastens with hook & eyes, three wide and three deep.
With extra wide shoulder straps and a little cushioning on the underside of them, i felt very comfortable and safe. The straps stayed where they're supposed to and didn't leave nasty red marks like other larger sized bras tend to do.

Fabric Material: 80% Polyamide 20% Elastane. Available in black or white.
Bands from 34-44, cups B-H.

Some people are against wearing wired bras when nursing for fear of damaging their milk supply or getting blocked ducts, however if you have one that is a true fit then no problems should occur. (i wouldn't wear one in the early stages though, more for comfort reasons really) You could save this as a going out bra, or a work bra. For times when you feel you need a bit more support.

Read EnVie's letter from Dr Miriam Stoppard about wearing under-wire whilst pregnant.

Priced at £39.99 (rrp £41.99) this bra is more expensive than others, but its the comfiest, prettest, yet practical under-wired nursing bra that i have found.

The second bra, Anita Nursing Large Cup Bra nonwired 5051

When i first saw this bra my thoughts were, 'oh-no, its a granny bra!' As it was not the most attractive thing to look at, but when i put it on i changed my mind. It was really comfortable, fit well and didn't look so bad at all. This bra was designed to help you and do its job as a nursing bra, not to be sexy in. It has light flower embroidery across the bust, pretty,cute yet sensible. Fabric Material: 45% Polyester 20% Polyamide 20% Cotton 10% Viscose. Only available in white.
Bands from 32-44, cups C-I.

With four sets of hook&eye fastenings, each row has three fastenings to give a comfortable and supportive hold. The extra thick shoulder straps give a great secure and supportive feeling that your boobs are in the right place, without the usual fear of them being loose and un-supported.

The sides are just high enough to give you a little more support, yet not to high as to rub your skin/armpits and make you sore.
I found the bra very easy to nurse in, with its large clip fastenings to allow quick (one-handed) access to your breasts. With extra built in hidden support, it almost looks like a sports bra within.

Over all i found this to be an excellent everyday bra!
If i was to change one thing, it would be to lower the front a centimetre or two. As with most nursing tops, and regular t-shirts, you could see the bra popping out over the top. Alternatively a little decor could be added if it is to be seen? A little bow perhaps?

With a price tag of £39.99 (rrp £45.99) this bra is not one of the cheapest options, but its definitely one of the comfiest. A good investment to see you through maternity and nursing.


Jane had told me that these bras are two of the most popular amongst their collection. For comfort reasons i can see why, however if your looking for prettier/sexy bras i would choose from their other styles/collections.

Both of these bras washed very well (wash at 40) with no misshaping or damage to the fastenings, quality products that were made to last.
Also both bras have little ribbon hoops/loops just below the clip fastenings, i am still trying to work out why or what they're for?


To purchase these bras or to browse the other styles and ''normal'' underwear, swimwear and see the *mens only* section by EnVie, visit their website here;

Lydia like's the under-wired one best

Review: Shloer ~ The alternative adult drink

I was sent two bottles of Shloer to try out. White grape & Elderflower and the New Rosé flavour.

When i was pregnant i drank alot of Shloer, infact i saw 2010 in with some! Its a great imitation of wine for the non-drinkers and the underage. Ideal for partys to please everyone. All flavours are lo/no fat, vegetarian friendly, no preservatives, artificial colours, sweeteners or flavourings! Once its opened you need to drink it within 3days, but trust me it won't last the day.

I found its initial taste very nice and moreish, yet i was dissapointed that there's no after taste. I found myself drinking it quite quickly just so the flavour would stay in my mouth.
Its lightly sparkling, which is great as i find fizzy drinks are hard to drink and make my nose go all funny! This is quite easy to drink with no nasty nose side effects!

Wine or Shloer, who would know?

A great alternative to alcohol drink.

There are six other available flavours from classic Red Grape or White Grape, to Grape and Elderflower or Raspberry and Cranberry, there is a flavour for everyone.

Sainsburys and ASDA have an offer on at the moment, 2 bottles for £3 (RRP £1.78 a bottle) Go get some and get Shloer-ping!!!!

Review: Lotus Olbas tissues

I was sent a box of the new size Lotus Olbas tissue's to try (rrp £2.29). Available at Boots, Sainsburys and many other large retailers.

I could smell the Olbas before even opening the box, the scent was very refreshing and instantly aided clearer breathing.
The box size is great if you have a cold/flu and have to stay indoors for a period of time.
I found that the scent clings onto your skin, so becarefull if feeding a baby/touching your mouth etc... It doe's not taste nice!
I had had a bunged up nose and used these throughout the day. They cleared up my blocked sinus's but in turn gave me a headache after having the strong scent around me all day.
They are very soft and kind to your skin, normally after a day of nose blowing my skin is red and sore. With these i didn't experience any of that discomfort.
So if your after some powerful tissues to see you through the sniffles, then these are for you! :)

Also available in single packs (rrp 59p) and 6pks (rrp £1.49)...

Or see the website for more information