A New addition to my handbag, the @britmums #MyAquaphor Challenge, sponsored by Eucerin.

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It is that time of year again, the winter is upon us and with that comes some harsh weather and dry skin. Therefore I’m delighted to be taking part in the #MyAquaphor Challenge, with @Britmums an sponsored by Eucerin.

My hands always need a bit of TLC in the winter however I am very bad at having any kind of skin care routine at all. It mainly just consists of washing my makeup off and finding the nearest moisturiser.

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This however has really mad my hands feel different and given them a very needed boost. My knuckles are not their normal flaky dry selves. I have even started using on my daughters dry eczema patches. It doesn’t feel like a normal hand cream or moisturiser its more like a smooth gel, I really love it my hands feel instantly softer.

Here is a little bit about the Aquaphor ;

  • Eucerin Aquaphor Soothing Skin Balm gives dry to very dry, cracked and irritated skin the SOS care it needs
  • Formulated with only seven ingredients, Aquaphor is gentle enough to be used on highly irritated skin as well as on sensitive baby skin and also in the nappy area
  • Eucerin Aquaphor Soothing Skin Balm protects the skin by creating a breathable protective barrier, allowing oxygen and water vapor to circulate to and from the skin, allowing skin to ‘breathe’ and strengthen its natural barrier function
  • The Eucerin Aquaphor formula was first introduced in the US market in 1925 and has been a household staple ever since – long trusted for its effectiveness in repairing a wide range of skin SOS cases.

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After carrying it about for just over a week now the Eucerin Aquaphor Soothing Skin Balm has now become a permanent member of my handbag and will continue to be there for some time. 

“This post is an entry for the BritMums #MyAquaphor Challenge, sponsored by Eucerin. Discover the benefits of Eucerin https://www.eucerin.co.uk/products/aquaphor/soothing-skin-balm-45ml”

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Colourful Adventures at School have Started – The #ACEforSchool Challenge

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I’m not sure how we got here, but Matilda has started school this year. I had been both dreading the day and been excited for her new adventure at the same time. The day came and off she went very happy and excited.

Nearly 4 weeks in and we have had a little wobble but on the whole she is loving school.

Me on the other hand, has been finding it a bit stressful. Getting us all out the house in the morning in a reasonable state (even though we are only 3 in this house), all the letters, admin and passwords has taken some getting used too.

Then comes the uniform. As I was fully expecting, especially as Matilda’s new school includes Forest school. Within a few days, pen, mud and paint all came home on the uniform.

It is a real test for any machine and detergent to remove stains and still keep the colours bright on that nice new uniform and mum and dad paid out for over the summer. Therefore when the ACE for school challenge came along it was a very welcome little helping hand.

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I was sent a bottle of ACE for Colours and ACE Stain Remover Spray to review and test out on the numerous  colourful school adventures our kids uniforms go through everyday at school.

ACE is designed to ;

  • Keep garments bright, robust and clean meaning clothes last for longer
  • Keep those colours bright and fresh with ACE for Colours
  • Tackle germs, grease and stubborn stains with ACE Stain Remover

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So here are a few before and after shots. Unfortunately we did not quite manage to remove all the green paint from the dress, however it had been well dried in by the time it was washed. I have to say everything else came out pretty ACE and the colours have stayed bright.

BEFORE

AFTER

I don’t really mind if Matilda comes home looking like this, it shows that she has been busy and having fun. Especially in her first reception year.

Here’s to many more stains to be removed!

“This post is an entry for the BritMums #ACEforSchool Challenge, sponsored by ACE. Get help for all kinds of stains with the ACE Stain Helper. http://www.acecleanuk.co.uk/ or to buy head to your local Tesco’s, Morrison’s, Waitrose or Sainsbury’s.” 

 

Gifts for under a fiver? #sdfiverchallenge

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Its Christmas! Ok it is not Christmas but it certainly might feel that way with Christmas ads and the shops have been geared up for Christmas for many weeks.

Christmas is an expensive time of year for us all. Although I plan and budget pretty well. I often find that it is the stocking fillers, Christmas eve boxes and preschool raffle little presents that stack up.

So when BritMums send me the Sportsdirect.com £5 Christmas Challenge  #sdfiverchallenge. I was surprised as to what gifts you could get for under a fiver. And it wasn’t just Sports Equipment and clothes which you might expect. The gift section on the website is fill of toys, games, arts and crafts gifts. Lots of the items are kids favourites too, Minions, My Little Pony, Starwars etc.

In total I was given £30 to include the fiver postage too. So what did I end up with for this. The answer is… quite a lot.

Gift Mug & Chocolate Minions set.
Monkey Tree Game.
Elf Door.
Playdoh – TrolleyBag.
My Little Pony- Art Set.
Paint Your Own Unicorns and Fairs.

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The Elf door and the Playdoh bag I choose as extra’s for Matilda. The Elf door was very reasonable at £2.49 and I had been thinking this would be a great addition to the Elf on the shelf fun this year. The Playdoh bag as this is one of Matilda’s favourite things still to do however our Playdoh and the cutter etc still currently reside in a carrier bag!

The others gifts will be extra’s for other friends and family with little ones.

The £5 Post and packing adds a bit however if you were buying a few items I think you would find this saved in the overall costs. Plus many of these bargains will be found in-store too.

On the whole I would certainly recommend having a look for yourself on the Sportsdirect website under the gift section. There really is lots to choose from.

Note – I purchased these items using a voucher I was sent for free. All opinions are my own. This post is an entry for BritMums #sdfiverchallenge Christmas Challenge, sponsored by Sportsdirect.com.

#TastesLikeNoUdder Challenge with Vita Coco Coconut Milk Alternative

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We are lucky in this house that no body can any allergies or intolerance, however I know that many of you do and of course it is always good to try alternative dieters and healthy eating.

Vita, challenged Bloggers to come up with a breakfast recipe with Vita Coco Coconut Milk Alternative. A smooth and dairy free alternative to milk. It is quite thick unlike some coconut milks therefore can easy be used as a milk substitute in recipes.

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I decided to try and make a Breakfast French Toast.

  • Using a shallow dish, mash a ripe banana and a small handful of the blueberries with a fork. Add about a pint of Coconut Milk and give it a little whisk.
  • Add half a teaspoon of Cinnamon mix in.
  • Cut bread into triangles and leave to soak up for about ten mins.
  • Add some oil to a pan and allow to heat. Then add the  triangles pouring the rest of the mixture on top.
  • I added some chopped Mint from the garden which brings out the flavour quite nicely.
  • Fry on both sizes until just crispy.
  • Finish with a little more cinnamon / mint and serve with some more Blueberries.

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Matilda and Daddy loved it. So it was fab to have a go at a new healthy Breakfast. Search the # online and the Vita website for lots more ideas.

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https://www.vitacoco.com/uk

“This recipe is an entry into the Dairy Free Style Your Breakfast challenge with Vita Coco and Foodies100. See more great breakfast ideas at http://vitacoco.com/uk/

#TearsIntoSmiles A plaster fixes everything?

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When I sore the latest drive with BritMums and Elastoplast, it could not have arrived at a better time for me and Matilda.

Matilda had been chasing pigeons at the park and after several shouts from me to “slow down” and “run on the glass”. She managed to face plant straight on the concrete!

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Minor Cuts and bruises are part and parcel of growing up. It seems to be a constant battle of letting her find her feet and having fun at the the same time. Yet always telling her to be careful too. However you cannot wrap them up in bubble-wrap, however temping that might be!

When faced with a “donk” my normal reaction is, where did you hurt, then cuddles then “be brave your a big girl”. I always find best to try not to dwell on it, once you know there is nothing serious.

We were sent some Frozen and Star Wars plasters to try out along with a garden game to have some fun in the garden. Matilda was taken straight way with both sets of plasters. She is a fan of Frozen and Star Wars. Although as Dad likes Star Wars as lot he is allowed to share those according to Matilda!

 

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Elastoplast say “Bumps, cuts, scratches and the tears that come with them are all part of childhood. We’ve been helping parents to comfort their little ones for over 90 years, and we know there’s no substitute like a cuddle from a parent. Healing is about much more than a great plaster. This is a chance to share our experiences of playing outdoors, comforting children and the different approaches to parenting. Together we can raise healthy and happy children!”

Having plasters with fun characters on is a good way to distract. It seems to have made yet another scratch from the garden into an exciting event. Only issue i have now is she wants them all the time, even for the dolly’s and teddies. So I will be buying more before I know it.

We love being out doors as much as possible as are always out in the garden and down the the park. However of course that comes then with hazards and the occasional scratch and bump.

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As an additional little note; Matilda was due her Pre-school boosters last week. I have to say she was very brave and playing Doctors is one of her favorite games right now which helped a lot. We even took her Doctors play set with us. Later replacing the nurses cotton wool with one Frozen and one Star Wars plaster on each arm. Which then took us 2 days to persuade Matilda to take off in the bath!

“This post is an entry for the BritMums #TearsintoSmiles Challenge, sponsored by Elastoplast.http://campaigns.elastoplast.net/plastermoments/uk

http://www.elastoplast.co.uk/

Bath Book and Bed #BathBookBed

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Me and Matilda are taking part in the ‘Bath, Book and Bed’ campaign which encourages stories at bed time to help little ones sleep. Matilda has never been a great sleeper but we have always had a good bedtime routine as it seems the best way to settle her.

In association with parenting expert Jo Frost and the Booktrust our pack arrived with :

  • Peppa Pig toothpaste
  • Peppa Pig toothbrushes
  • Peppa Pig Bubbles
  • Tips book
  • 3 Books  : Quiet By Kate Alizadeh, Goodnight Everyone By Chris Haughton, and Dave’s Cave By Frann Preston Gannon.

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This all arrived on the morning Matilda and Daddy were due at the dentist, so the toothpaste and brushes were a great start. This is the first thing we do when we go up to bed in the evening. Often has involved making funny faces or noises like Arrrhhh like a pirate to get her to open wide, but I’m lucky as Matilda likes it and we have never had much fussing over brushing.

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Then snuggle for story time in her room. Sometimes me however often in the week it is Dad that likes to take her to bed. Matilda was certainly given the right name. Like her namesake Roald Dahl’s – Matilda she loves a story. Her imagination never fails to surprise me!

We have a big collection of books and go to our library once a week. So we have something new to read. We often find bedtime is the best for stories as she’ll sit and listen (well mostly), plus helps her wind down.

We loved Quiet! by Kate Alizadeh. We had lots of fun with all the noises and sounds that are featured in the book. A good list of other bedtime books can be found here: http://www.booktrust.org.uk/books/children/booklists/444/

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The Booklet “Bath, Book, Bed: Simple steps to a better night’s sleep’ by Jo Frost featuring Daddy Pig. Has some great tips on a good bedtime routine. Some you may and thought of or just needed reminding about other maybe not. Download the booklet here,

https://fileserver.booktrust.org.uk/usr/resources/1564/dp-bath-bed-book-page-16pp-final.pdf

Book Trust are also hosting two events with Jo and Daddy Pig at intu Trafford Centre on Thursday, 27 April and intu Lakeside on Friday, 28 April. Details via the website below.

I love the idea of this campaign more as a reminder that sometimes a good routine is all it takes for a happier child in the morning. Plus promotes some good bonding time with your little ones no matter what ages.

#BathBookBed – www.booktrust.org.uk/bathbookbed

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#ThankGoodness BritMums along with Dolmio challenge.

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BritMums along with Dolmio challenged Bloggers  to create a #ThankGoodness mid-week meal from a shop of simple ingredients found in a lot of kitchen cupboards.  A simple, and good meal with a jar of Dolmio Bolognese.

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We made the Classic Bolognese with our sauce however then tried to come up with some alternative ways to use that other than the with classic Spaghetti. Nothing wrong with Spaghetti of course too.

 

Bolognese Yorkshire Puddings

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Roasted Carrots / Courgettes / Aubergines

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Bunny Chow – Dolmio Way. A South African dish, normally an Indian fusion with a curry inside a cut out loaf.

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This made a great family meal, all really quick and easy to do mid-week too. Matilda loved it. Especially pulling at the bits of bread and dipping in. Defiantly a jar of Dolmio is something good to have handy to use.

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Dolmio Bolognese Original 500g sauce is 100% natural. In each jar, you’ll find at least 10 juicy diced tomatoes, a dollop of tomato puree, half an onion, a tablespoon of sunflower oil, a couple of cloves of garlic, a handful of herbs including basil, a teaspoon of cornflour, a teaspoon of salt, a pinch of pepper, two teaspoons of added beet sugar for taste, a squeeze of lemon juice, a splash of water and nothing more. In fact, a jar provides a family of four with one of their 5-a-day each and that’s before you add any further veg to the meal!

“This post is an entry for the #Dolmio #ThankGoodness Challenge, sponsored by Dolmio.   www.dolmio.co.uk/thankgoodness.”

https://www.facebook.com/mumandmatilda/