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.

Thursday, 21 July 2011

Review: The Essentail One ~ A Newborn's basic must have's!

This review certainly is going to be picture heavy, it has to be so i can show you all the gorgeous things that Kate from 'The Essential One' has sent me. 
The Essential One specialize in baby's first year, 0-12mths. Hence the name, all baby's first year essentials can be found here! Kate sent me a wonderful package that contained lots of beautiful things for this unborn baby of mine, another girl.
 The Essential One have girly, boyish and uni-sex items, so something to please everyone before and after baby arrives.

I arrived home and found this parcel at my door. What a lovely surprise :) The pretty logo on the pack lets you know who your parcel is from and instantly makes you excited to open it up! When i opened it the first thing i noticed was the smell, the unmistakable scent of a freshly bathed Newborn. Enough to make any hormonal pregnant lady cry, beautiful. This is their signature scent, the fragrance is cleverly designed to be allergen free and is sprayed onto the tissue not directly onto the clothing itself.
I found a tissue paper wrapped neatly presented and folded bundle, with a great little catalogue of all the other available items.

Even the stickers have the brands bunny face on, so cute i love them! :)

I carefully unwrapped the tissue paper and opened it out...

Beautifully folded and pressed clothing, already laid out in a way that i could see most of the content. I was very eager to delve further and open them up to check the sizing. My first daughter was 8lb4.5oz at birth and didn't fit into Newborn size's, so Kate thoughtfully sent me 0-3mths (upto 14lbs, 62cm height) for this baby :)

These totally adorable hats and mitts where the first things i looked at, i am one for dots & stripes so i was instantly loving these! The mitts do seem excessively small and don't taper in very much around the wrist. I would love to see how long they actually manage to stay on baby without falling off due to not being long enough or fitted enough? But, when baby arrives i will be testing them out a.s.a.p!
I could fit both of my fists (clenched) into the hats, leaving enough room for movement and growth. These are definitely spot on for sizing, and i love the little detailing of the knotted top.
Co-ordinate with the other items i was sent, and other available items.
Hats 2pk - £5 EO38, Mitts 2pk - £3 ESS23. Both sets are in the Pastel pink colour way.


This stripy heart all-in-one is one of their best sellers. A beautiful outfit that's great for daytime as an outfit or as an easy to use sleepwear option.
The cute design looks like it is double layered with a t-shirt underneath, very cool baby! The access to baby is great with fully poppered back and legs. The feet look a little small on this suit, but it has been 18mths since I've seen a newborns feet so they maybe perfect for her :)
The chest area has two little buttons and the left leg has a cotton bow on, now you may wonder if they're safe to be put on a baby's outfit. Choking hazards etc... Well i can assure you they're pretty sturdily fixed on, i had a good tug on all of them and not a wobble or loose thread to tell of. Also very sturdy poppers that won't undo if baby wiggles a bit, but are also smooth on the skin.
Co-ordinates with the hats and Mitts. Other items also available.
Pastel Pink Suit - £15 EO32

Inside these lovely little cotton bags are sleepsuits and bodysuits. The sleepsuits come in a three pack and the bodysuits are a five pack, both come with their own bag for storage. Plus they are drawstring close so you can use them to hang up bits and bobs. I am planning on using one for baby's socks and the other for hats & mitts.

The sleepsuits have beautiful details, featuring the bunny embroidered on and other little patches and bows sewn on. A layered neckline for extra comfort and fully poppered body and legs.
The sleeves have 'built in' mitts, a very useful thing when baby at night when regular mitts get knocked off in their sleep.

Co-ordinates with the hats and mitts. Other items also available.
3pk sleepsuits in Pastel Pink - £18 ESS13

This five pack of uni-sex suits really impressed me. A deep but snug fit neckline with a good amount of material to fold over the shoulders, keeping baby's neck and chest area covered. And low-rise leg openings, great as knowone wants a saggy bum! These offer a comfortable and practical fit, whilst also being in totally adorable designs! Unlike some other brands of sleepsuits that tend to fall short in these areas, making it drafty and uncomfortable for baby.
Other co-ordinating items are available.
5pk Bodysuits in Uni-sex Beige - £15 ESS4

All of the items are SO soft, like baby rabbit soft! That's because The Essential One only use 100% fully combed soft handle cotton. All of the items can be purchased individually or (most of them) as part of one of their many gift sets, both gorgeous and great value for the quality and amount of items you get.
The poppers and metal items are nickel free to avoid irritation, machine washable and all are regularly tested throughout production to ensure attachment strength is maintained. Making it safe for baby to bumble about as they do :) And all embroideries have a soft backing inside the garments to ensure there is no irritation to baby’s skin. On all the items i found the tags to be super discrete, small and soft next to baby's skin. Fabulous, no irritating tags to itch the baby or for mummy to have to cut off!

Everything has been thoughtfully done when making these items, every care has been taken. Excellent designs and quality.

I haven't a bad thing say about this company or their products, with their super friendly service and easy to use website, shopping here is a most enjoyable experience. The only problem being what to order first!?!
Well to help you decide they offer 10% off your first order, all you have to do is enter ESS1 at the checkout :) Order online or by phone 0870 850 0727

The recipe for nightime

Page 6 of the catalogue, this made me cry! But they were happy tears....

1 cherished newborn
1 cosy Essential One sleepsuit
1 cotton Essential One bodysuit

Add a snugly pair of matching mitts,
cuddle for 30 minutes in a pair of loving arms
= all that is essential for a great night's sleep.

It's beautiful :) Then you think about it....hang on a minute....No nappie? Lol
Also don't forget to visit their facebook page, check out the Autumn Photo shoot, so darn cute! And remember to tell them i sent you :)


Monday, 18 July 2011

Review: Where NOT to have a pub dinner....

Fantastic was my initial reaction when my friend Karen gave me her reservation for a meal for two at The Park View, a lovely pub just at the top corner of Preston Park (Brighton).

Justin and i had not been out on a 'date' for ages! So we looked online at their 'New & Improved' menu, online i had read that they are trying out the all new menu with improved service. Waiter service for the restaurant style experience, however my friend Karen had given me a voucher to get two main meals up to the value of £15 each for free, this was all part of their 'trail', but on this voucher it said to hand your voucher in when you order your food at the bar. Conflicting information already?

So the meal evening came and we dressed up and off we went. Arriving on time we didn't know where to go to say we had arrived, so we waited at the bar....and waited....It was Wednesday which is their quiz night, so it was busier than usual. However they hadn't seemed to have allowed for this and had only one member of staff serving at the bar. And what a joy she was, her face just said 'I wish i was at home in bed'.
At 8.10pm i managed to grab a waitress who was on her way to serve downstairs, i asked her where we supposed to be and she replied 'I don't know, i could check if you like?' Erm... Well yes please!
She came back and said 'Apparently your table's downstairs' and proceeded to walk off, so i followed her and said 'So are we to follow you then?' She nodded and carried on walking downstairs.
We got downstairs and she stood in front of our table and said 'There it is' and walked off again!

So we sat down and helped ourselves to the menus, we then waited again for about 15mins this time until we saw her again. I asked her if we are to order from her or the bar, she replied 'The bar' and wandered off.
Being 24wks pregnant and rather hungry i wasn't going to hang around any longer. I took the menu up stairs for another long wait at the bar! A couple of lovely ladies where stood there waiting and jokingly said to me 'You'dve had your baby by the time you get served!'
They weren't far off. Finally it was my time and happy came to me 'What do you want?' was her first sentence to me, i said I'd like to order some food and she looked blankly at me so i proceeded to tell her what we'd like and our table number. She walked off without saying anything or even asking how Justin would like his steak cooked! She came back and said 'Tell me again, I've forgotten'. After pressing a few more buttons on the computer she came over and asked if i wanted to start a tab or pay now, so i handed her the voucher to which she sighed and said 'Ohhh! You've got one of THEM!' Like i had three heads or something. She took the voucher to a guy at the side of the bar who looked like the duty manager in a shirt and tie, she asked him if what we had ordered was included. He threw his hands up in the air and shrugged whilst replying to her 'I don't know do i? Why don't you read the thing!' Lovely... Meanwhile the bar is filling up with thirsty/hungry customer who are getting more and more impatient.
She came over again and said 'I need £3 from you', i asked why and she said the chips i ordered where not included, I'm guessing this was just on her say so. I had to go back downstairs and get the £3, when i returned the bar was even busier. After a few minutes Happy spotted me through the crowed and called out to me, arm outstretched 'Can i have that £3'. I moved forwarded and handed it to her, she walked off and started serving someone else. So said 'Thankyou, I'll go and wait downstairs for me food then!?!'
The other customers seem to look rather shocked at how she ignored me once she got her £3. Another woman came to the bar and said 'Thankyou for my food, bye' This lady was also ignored!

So back downstairs Justin was waiting, he thought i had run away or gone to cook it myself!
Dinner took about 25mins to arrive, and a few minutes beforehand the waitress returned with some cutlery. When the food arrived the waitress asked who had the steak and if we wanted any sauce. I was shocked at how tiny Justin's steak was, it was £14.95 and no bigger than 4'' by 2'', Just enough for a small cat to eat! At £8.95 my meal was a Chicken Breast, Chicory and Citrus dressing salad. This consisted of smokey re-formed bits of chicken (yuck!), a few bits of satsuma, Apple, chicory and rocket leaves. Very odd, i thought salad had lettuce in it not fruit!?! The chips that i paid £3 for arrived a few minutes later and it was the smallest portion i had ever seen, referring to cats again, the bowl they were served in would've suited the steak or some milk for the cat in question!

Oh and also the music was so loud Justin and i had to pretty much shout at each other to be heard, or repeat everything. So annoying as i hate having to repeat myself!

That was it, knowone came to see how the food was, if we wanted anything else etc...
I don't think Justin and i had eaten so quickly due to hunger and to get out of somewhere quick enough!
So overall it was a bad experience of slowness, rudeness, unhelpfullness and over-priced food. The only good thing i can say about it is thank goodness we had a free meal that day!

Needless to say we WON'T be returning there again, which is sad to say as we used to go there for the odd drink and Lydia had her first birthday party there. Its seriously gone down hill, rather than up as it was boasting about! 

The Fonz, says it all!

Friday, 15 July 2011

Post by Lydia: My friend Tommy...

Last weekend Mumma and Daddy took to me to Bath for a holiday :) We we're to be staying with Grandad Peter and Grandma Julia. Daddy got a hire car on Friday morning and we set off...

Testing out Mumma's seat for her

Its hard work all this travelling, i had to have a quick nap before we stopped for lunch

Then it was a picnic at Rownhams service station. I've been there so many times now, i was disappointed that the playground was closed though :(

I of course took Dora with me, can't leave my baby behind can i! Here is a photo Mumma took of us...

We made another pit stop before we got to Bath. Mumma said it was because i was having a paddy and needed calming down, but i think she was just blaming me for something i didn't do. See it was Dora who was screaming and kicking her legs. NOT ME!

We arrived at Peter & Julia's house at about 4.30/5pm. It looked like knowone was in so Mumma went around the back and found Peter in the conservatory. 
Peter let us in and made us a cup of tea, Mumma and Daddy got all of our stuff in just before Julia returned home. Julia then made a gorgeous Thai chicken curry for dinner and we had ice-cream and raspberry's freshly picked from their garden.

The next morning i woke up to some presents. Julia had brought me 2 lovely outfits, a dress and a rain jacket. She'd also got me some shoes but because i have big feet like Mumma they didn't fit me :(
I decided it was time for a fashion show and tried on all my new gear whilst dangling the hangers from my wrists, its the new rage you know.


Shortly after the fashion show Julia took me into the garden to meet some of the neighbours and show me and Mumma what fruit and vegetables she has growing there.
This is Nanny....

And her two friends....

After the adults had a naughty breakfast of bacon and egg sandwiches we all headed off into Bath centre to do some shopping. Daddy brought me some lovely shoes, jeans and some winter accessories. Mumma told me i can share them with my sister, but she's not here yet. Silly Mumma!

After a coffee stop at M&S i decided to test the adults, lets see how far away i could run without them realising. I waited for Daddy to get his wallet out and i slinked off into the menswear section, i managed about 10metres before Mumma shouted 'Where's Lydia!?!'
Everyone was looking for me and Mumma got quite upset about it. I didn't like being told off so i decided to scream at her and hold my breath until i went blue, floppy and passed out in her arms for a minute or two.
I was OK though, don't think i will do that again anytime soon. I will wait until i am bigger then i can run faster!

So when we had all calmed down we headed off towards the river, we stopped to get some ice-cream on the way (apparently as i nodded off and was told i missed ice-cream!). Then we all got on the boat that takes you up the Wier, i only woke up just before we had to get off though. I was knackered from my tantrum!

 We then got off at the top of the Weir for some lunch.

We ate in the Bathampton arms...

Then we got a return boat ride before they finished up for the night. This time i was awake for the whole journey! I changed into another of my new outfits and watched the ducks swim by.

Back at our home for the weekend we all relaxed after a busy day. Mumma sat down and watched the horse's next door whilst i played with Daddy.

On Sunday i put my new dress on and went into the garden for breakfast, i heard a really strange noise. Funny, but very odd. I asked Mumma what it was and she told me they're sheep! What is a sheep? We went to have a look at them down the bottom of the garden but they ran away i we got there, don't think they liked me :( But i loved copying the noise, 'Bahhhhh'

When Peter woke up he said he would take us to meet the chickens and horse's. I had no idea what he was on about until i was handed over the fence and we walked towards this massive shiny black animal and a smaller grey and white one. Horse's!!! Oh i like them, the small one is called Tommy. He is my friend...

He gave me lots of kisses and let me sit on his back for a bit...

Then it was off to the chicken coop, whatever one of them is? Tommy and his mate didn't want us to go and followed us all the way down...

We kindly asked them to wait for us and we went on.

I really like chickens, they make funny noise's. I asked if i could get in with them, i was allowed and i petted some of them.

After the chickens we headed back towards home. Tommy and his friend were still waiting for us and walked us back up towards the fence. I told Tommy i would come and see him again later, we had another hug and kiss and off we went.

We went into the next field where there was another horse, a shy brown one. Now she was funny, she cleared her nostrils and made a really loud noise. The noise made Daddy jump, i was laughing, half at the noise and half at Daddy's reaction to it!

Julia had then woken up and said we could go to the park, she told me they had swings there, i LOVE going on the swings! When we got there i was so excited that i wanted a go on everything, the rocking motor bike, slide, roundabout, swings, steps and wooden bridge, all of it!

 But somehow i think the adults were having as much as me...


Then we carried on walking to a really old church, and i mean really old, it was older than Daddy! I got bored and nodded off at this point, when i woke up we were back at home.
The sun had come out and there was a barbecue on the go, i spotted the sun loungers had been put out. Time for a little relaxation me thinks!

It soon got really hot and people started taking their clothes off, so i joined in! Why not?

 After we had the barbecue Julia's friends came over, the people who live next door. Its their land and their chickens :) They brought with them their dog Rocky, i like dogs and this one liked me. He kept licking me and trying to steal my food! Cheeky pup. Here i am feeding him some of my sandwich..

I then had a lovely warm bath, i was quite dirty after rolling about with Rocky, he kept licking me,and i had been messily eating lots. Also i still had slobber on me from Tommy's kisses!

I felt a bit crinkly in the morning and asked Daddy to give me a pressing, he wouldn't though :(

So i settled for another visit to see my friend Tommy. I didn't have to go far as he was just outside the conservatory when we went outside. Tommy was hungry today and tried to nibble on my legs! I had green marks on me from where he'd eaten grass then tried to eat me! So Peter got Tommy a carrot to eat, as i need my legs!

It was then time to say goodbye for a while as we had to go home to Brighton. Peter and Julia went to work and Mumma and Dadda packed up the car.

We got a bit lost and ended up 3miles away from Bristol! But still Daddy said he had alot of petrol still left to use up so it didn't matter to much. Finally we arrived in Salisbury for some lunch, here's me pretending to drink a coffee...

I had another outfit change and we then headed to Eastbourne where we ate chips on the seafront.

After that i was getting pretty tired. So Mumma and Daddy got a Chinese takeaway for dinner and we went home. Home to Brighton.

I loved my holiday and i can't wait to do it all again next year, and by that time i will be a big sister! :)