Sunday, 7 September 2014

Maternity Photos


A maternity photo shoot in Manchester

I am really excited to be able to share with you the results from our maternity photo-shoot. I previously blogged about choosing our photographer – Photography by Carina, and showed you some of her fabulous work.

I was very happy with the whole process. Carina is not only a lovely person who made us feel at ease straight away, she is highly professional and put 100% of her effort into making sure we got exactly what we wanted out of our shoot.

Previous to the shoot, Carina and I met for a consultation (drink in Didsbury) to discuss everything from where we wanted the shoot to take place, to the kind of pictures we were after. Carina clearly explained her style of photography and showed me more examples of her work. She had also asked me to make a Pinterst board of any pictures I found on the internet that appealed to me. It was very clear we were on the same wavelength and so we arranged a suitable time and date for the shoot to take place.

Pete and I decided to have the shoot at our house as we are lucky enough to have a large garden, newly decorated front room, and of course, a super cute nursery.

Anyway, enough from me, have a look at the results……









What do you think of the results?


Monday, 1 September 2014

Win Tickets to the Baby and Toddler Show

Win tickets (2) to the Baby & Toddler Show in Manchester.


I've teamed up with Burble Baby to offer 2 lucky readers a pair of tickets to the Baby & Toddler Show in Manchester at EventCity, on 26-28 September - worth £30.

Enter via the Rafflecoptor at the bottom of the post.

Firstly, let me introduce you to Burble Baby:




"Inspired by our very own burbling babies, Burble Baby is a luxurious and charming collection of hampers for new mums and their babies, comprising adorable trinkets, cutesy clothes, sumptuous skincare & enchanting gifts. Comprising the Best of British design and manufacture, fair trade and organic, and quite a few quirky pieces that are just that little bit different from the norm, gifts and hampers from Burble Baby are a delightful present to receive, as well as to give. Each Burble Baby hamper is lovingly created to order, cushioned in shredded paper and carefully placed in our vintage inspired keepsake box so precious memories can be treasured forever. We will even hand write your personal message on one of our gift cards for that extra special touch, and adorn each hamper with pretty ribbons and its own lucky brass charm. Gorgeous! And, because we know you will want to get your lovely gift in the hands of new mums quickly and safely, we send all our orders on a tracked next day service so you can keep up to date with your gift’s progress every step of the way."

Baby showers, new arrivals, christenings, first birthdays and Christmas; Burble Baby has an exquisite gift or hamper for every occasion...




You can find Burble Baby here:








a Rafflecopter giveaway

Rules - UK only.


Sunday, 31 August 2014

34 Weeks Pregnant Bump Update // Weird Cravings

Hi Everyone,

Here is my second ever attempt at a You Tube video. I'm getting faster at editing them but it seems my vid lost quality at each stage of the editing, so if anyone has any tips please give me a holla!





Have you read my other bump updates?



34 weeks pregnant weird cravings



Sunday, 24 August 2014

Do Rug Doctor Carpet Cleaners Really Work?

Do Rug Doctor Carpet Cleaners Really Work


Do Rug Doctor Carpet Cleaners Really Work?

When we moved into our new home in January, we were met with some sorry-looking cream carpets in the through lounge. Not only had the previous tenants been the owner of a naughty dog who had urinated all over the damn place, but as they had moved out they had kindly left muddy footprints absolutely everywhere. It was pretty minging.

Do Rug Doctor Carpet Cleaners Really Work

We weren’t too bothered as the original plan was to get real wood flooring fitted throughout.  As our workmen began to finish re-plastering downstairs, we discovered the life-changing news that we were going to be parents and our priorities instantly changed. A new carpet had to be put on the back-burner whilst nursery furniture and saving up for maternity leave took all our surplus cash.

So what to do with the smelly dirty carpet?

We borrowed a vax carpet cleaner off family but it didn’t make very much difference to the deeply ingrained filth.

Before we called the professionals in we tried the Rug Doctor. My expectations were low if I am totally honest with you. I thought it would be the same as the Vax cleaner and not make much of a difference.

Do Rug Doctor Carpet Cleaners Really Work

The Rug Doctor is absolutely brilliant! It arrived by courier in a massive box which contained the machine and three different chemicals. The carpet detergent goes in the machine with water, whilst the other two spray-bottles are spot treatments you can spritz on before the Rug Doctor, although I wasn’t really sure what the difference was between ‘Spot and Stain Remover’ and ‘Oxy Power Stain Remover’.

Rug Doctor Carpet Cleaner review

Ok, for the sake of some photos, I was posing with the Rug Doctor but being pregnant I did NOT do any lifting and pushing – Pete did everything. This is the only downside to the Rug Doctor – frail people would not be able to use it, they would require help to get it out of the box, assemble, and move around.

The Rug Doctor is slowly pulled across the carpet and removes dirt instantly! You do not need to go back and forth over one area.

Rug Doctor Carpet Cleaner manchester

The results were astounding! Just as good as getting a professional to come to your home and a lot cheaper.
The smelly old carpet has a new lease of life and the Rug Doctor has saved us a small fortune.
I’m going to hire it again before Baby arrives and perhaps do the carpets every 4-6 months.


Prices:
With a 24 hour machine rental and the Rug Doctor 4 litre bottle of Rug Doctor Carpet Detergent you can clean your whole house - up to 8 rooms - for around £42.99.





This product was sent for review purposes only. No monetary compensation was received and opinions are 100% my own.

Saturday, 16 August 2014

Hello You Tube!

vlog you tube blogger manchester


So after weeks, or more like months, of deliberation I have decided to launch my You Tube channel. I’ve been thinking about setting one up for some time now but never quite got around to it. The main reason was because I am lazy. Blogging takes up so much time, from content writing, to uploading and editing photographs, I thought perhaps vlogging would be slightly easier.

It isn’t.

As you can see from my first video, the editing, lighting and soundtrack are extremely amateurish. It’s also a bit cringe watching yourself on camera (do I really sound like that!?) but you know what, I’m proud of myself because I have learnt something new. I can now make a basic You Tube video and if I decide to keep it up, my skills should improve and so should the quality.

It’s the same looking back at my early blog posts; I often think “What the Hell!?”


Anyway, it would absolutely make my day if you popped over and gave me a thumbs up, subscribed, or left a comment, and if you have a You Tube channel please let me know in the comments so I can follow you back……..




xXx

Saturday, 9 August 2014

My Body UNashamed

body confidence

Today I am tremendously excited to be involved, along with 65 other bloggers, in the brand new #bodyUNashamed project.

#bodyUNashamed has been created by my blogging friend Penny (LilliesandLove) who is absolutely sick to death of men and women feeling inadequate just because they don’t fit in to the ridiculous photoshopped stereotypes that we have thrust upon us each and every day in the media. Social media leaves you wide open to criticism from all angles and this ‘trolling’ is affecting so many, particularly young, people with often devastating consequences.

Nearly every woman I know has suffered body confidence issues in the past but now is the time to stand up and fight back against body shaming!

Step one

I have been linked with the lovely Meriannen (from Meriannen) and my job is to highlight 3 things about this blogger which I think are great.



I’d never come across this blog before, but as soon as I began reading I couldn’t stop! As Meriannen herself says:

”It’s an emotional ride, but it’s worth getting on. This all is about the dreams of becoming a parent and what happens when everything just doesn’t go according to the plans. Above all, it’s a story of survival”.

Meriannen is a beautiful, amazing Finnish lady living in the UK. Not only did she have to endure a long-distance relationship with her partner Dan throughout her pregnancy, she then gave birth prematurely to her baby with cerebral palsy and profound hearing loss.

It is extremely difficult for me to put into words only 3 things which are great about Meriannen as I could write an essay! But here goes:

1.     You are an amazing writer; I cried reading your posts about your love for Dan and I can’t wait to read more about your story!

2.     You are a true natural beauty. You don’t need to wear layers and layers of makeup to look beautiful. Your striking blonde hair and blue eyes make you stand out from the crowd. Gorgeous!

3.     Your bravery is an inspiration. From having to cope with your pregnancy alone, to moving to a different country, and now facing challenges with a special baby makes you an incredibly inspiring blogger, woman and mother.

Step 2

Now it’s my turn to list 3 things I think are great about myself. I’ll admit, this is really difficult for me. When I was a teen I used to list in my mind all the things I would change about myself from head to toe such as “no frizzy hair, nicer eyebrows, bigger eyes, longer eyelashes, no freckles” and so it went on. Thinking about that now is rather shocking for me as it’s an unhealthy thing to do. If my son or daughter ever had low self-esteem and no body confidence I would be devastated. I suppose that this is what #bodyUNashamed is all about; tackling a deep –rooted negativity which is found in nearly everyone. As part of the project, FashionGlammy was paired up with myself and you can find the 3 things she thought about me HERE.

So here goes:

1.     I love my body. All of it. I am healthy. I can walk, run, dance and do roly-polys if I so wish. Some people are not so lucky to be able to do these things. I’ve pushed my body to limits; I’ve ran 26 miles, I’ve cycled 60 miles, and now I am about to put it to the ultimate test of  delivering my Baby. I’m proud of my body and I respect it. I want to keep my body as healthy as possible for as long as I have breath in my lungs. I want to see my Grandchildren grow up and I want to enjoy many, many years with my best friend and soul mate. This is my motivation to exercise my body and give it the best fuel.

Manchester blogger


2.     I love my belly. I’ve loved watching it grow larger and feel the first kicks of our Baby. Some women feel fat and frumpy with a baby bump and try and disguise it. NO! The miracle of life should be celebrated. I know I will miss my bump when it has gone.

Manchester blogger pregnant pregnancy


3.     I love my freckles. It’s funny that the one thing I used to hate about my face is now one of my favourites. They say “freckles never fall on a face that isn't fair” which I think is lovely. Freckles are cute and are associated with youth, and warm summer months. My favourite reason I love my freckles though, is because my Husband loves them so much. He lovingly calls me “freckles” and he tells me I am beautiful every day. He genuinely means it and it makes my belly do summersaults and my heart beat faster.

Manchester blogger


#bodyUNashamed

Phew, that was quite an emotional post to write but I feel pretty damn amazing now, so many thanks to Penny, Meriannen and FashionGlammy.

You don’t have to be a blogger to get involved, to be proud of who you are and to embrace the #bodyUNashamed mentality.  Be healthy, be happy, but never apologise for the way your body looks.  
Use the hashtag and embrace it in helping yourself and others to feel good about themselves! Tag your friends and tell them why they as so great!




xXx

Monday, 4 August 2014

30 Weeks Pregnant Bump Update

30 weeks pregnant bump belly

I really can’t believe how close to meeting Baby we are! The countdown is on – in single figures from next week.


How far along? 30+4

Total weight gain/loss? I’ve forgotten to weigh myself these past couple of weeks. I know that the average baby weighs around 3 pounds already and our Baby is measuring slightly bigger than average! Oh God.

Maternity clothes? In the photo above I am wearing a nighty! I bought a couple from Primark to wear during labour but I can’t resist stripping off and throwing this on when I get in from work – it’s so damn comfortable.

Stretch marks? Still none. Perhaps I will escape them altogether, fingers crossed.

Sleep? This heat wave has made sleeping really difficult for me. Baby is pressing on my bladder causing frequent loo visits and now I am experiencing even more weird dreams than usual. I woke up at 4am the other morning panicking because a big brown bear was after us. Proper scary. My sleeping is much lighter than before the pregnancy and I think this is just my body preparing for Baby’s arrival.

Best moment this fortnight? Finishing off our antenatal classes has made us so excited about the next few weeks, and we feel nervous, but ready to be parents.

Miss anything? No nothing! I’m not bothered about drinking anymore, and it’s been so long since I ate steak that it would probably make me feel really ill if I had a medium rare fillet anyway.

Movement? The last few days has marked such an incredible increase in Baby’s movements. We can physically see Baby jumping and kicking around and when I cuddle Pete he can feel Baby kicking him like its saying “Hello Daddy”. I’m going to enjoy these movements as I believe they may decrease a bit as Baby has less room to move around over the next few weeks.

Food cravings? No not really, in fact my appetite has actually decreased over the last few days. I think my stomach is being squished so it’s a bit like having a gastric band and I feel full really quickly.

Anything making you queasy or sick? I’ve had the odd day of feeling a bit sick but I’m not sure whats causing it, apart from my congested and cramped internal organs!

Labour Signs?  I’ve been feeling the odd mild cramps which are not painful in the slightest. I don’t want to say they are Braxton Hicks as I think they would feel stronger. I think it’s just my belly stretching little bit further.

Current Symptoms? Nose bleeds, bit of belly ache, severe tiredness and the worst issue I’m experiencing at the moment is pain in my glutes. I have no idea why but it only accentuates my pregnant waddle and makes me feel like I’ve had a proper good arse-kicking. Literally.

Belly button in or out? Out! But it’s wonky! I hope it goes back to normal eventually!

Wedding rings on or off? On.

Happy or moody most of the time? Pete says “happy” =)


Looking forward to? Holding our Baby and kissing it’s little face.


Have you read my other bump updates?