Thursday, 18 December 2014

The First Few Weeks

mummy blogger manchester north west

In reality it is hard.

 Very, very, hard.

Nothing and nobody can prepare you for the whirlwind of hormones, nappies and sheer and utter exhaustion that become your life the second that squirming pink bundle is plonked onto your chest.

I had filled my heavily-pregnant-and-housebound maternity leave days watching countless parenting vlogs featuring yummy mummies and glamourous mammas who made life with a new-born look like a piece of cake.

 My expectations of how life would change were beyond unrealistic.

When acquaintances find out that you are expecting, they will usually say something along the lines of:

“I hope you’re prepared for the sleepless nights”

You take this with a pinch of salt as they laugh and smile when they say this, but if you take a second to look, really look, into their eyes, you will see a deep-rooted mania, perhaps a slight twitch, that only the sleep deprived new parent will sport.

I’d thought to myself – of course Baby will be up a couple of times in the night. I will feed them, change them and put them down to sleep and then go straight back to sleep myself. I assumed I’d be a little bit tired at first, but nothing a few coffees wouldn’t fix.

Now I laugh out loud at my own naivety and vaguely notice it has a frenzied edge.

What really happens?

You arrive home from hospital, knackered, drugged up, battered and bruised, and oh, lets throw a little “traumatised from labour” into the mix. What you really need is a fortnights break in a luxury spa retreat, a juice cleanse detox and possibly some therapy. What you actually get is a tiny person, your tiny person, who is totally and utterly reliant on you to keep them alive.

The exhaustion is the hardest part. It makes everything else harder too. Being heavily pregnant and the associated poor sleep which comes part and parcel of that is only the tip of the sleep-deprivation iceberg. You are shattered before you have even begun parenthood and I find it extremely ironic that you have to go through the most physically challenging process of your whole entire life to birth a baby whilst being in the physically worst shape possible – over 3 stone heavier for me with pain in every joint and a blocked and swollen nose which made my breathing exercises that I was relying so much upon pretty damn useless.

I like to keep it real on this blog, so have filmed a 100%  truthful vlog of a typical day in the life of Me; a tired new mummy trying her best. I can’t quite believe I’m putting my dog-tired make-up free face out there on the tinterweb, but I hope to spread the message that life with a newborn isn’t glamourous, and its all about surviving one day, or even one hour, at a time. Head over to my You Tube channel to check out my latest videos.

Love gets you through

When a baby is born, a mother is also born, and with it comes an unconditional fierce love and a new reason for breathing.

This love gets you up at 2am to feed your child. Your eyes burn, your cheeks ache with tiredness, you sway and see ghosts out of the corner of your eyes in the shadowy bedroom. But you do it. This love makes your heart ache when you hear you Baby cry with the overwhelming desire to take all his pain and suffering away, now and forever.

How do you cope?

You just do.

However hard it gets, I know it will only be for a brief, fleeting moment in Art’s life and I will miss the days he would only fall asleep on his Mummy. It is so very true that the nights are long but the years are short. His complete and utter reliance on me is a beautiful thing, not a chore. 

I find it amazing that my baby has heard my heart beat his whole life.

I made his.

mummy blogger manchester north west


mummy blogger manchester north west

Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Manchester Marmalade

Duerr’s Manchester Marmalade

I love supporting local businesses with a rich Northern heritage so I am thrilled to be able to share with you Duerr’s Manchester Marmalade today.

How funky is their website!

Duerr’s first cooked up their Manchester Marmalade over 50 years and have proudly been producing their quality preserves from their Manchester factory for over 130 years. In 2009, the recipe was especially updated for their changing taste buds – a little sweeter, but just as delicious.

I do like a scrape of marmalade on toast myself, and this one tastes delicious, but surely we can be a little more adventurous with the festive season well and truly upon us?


I found this fantastic recipe for marmalade-glazed chicken drumsticks and I think this would be a perfect Boxing Day buffet addition or perhaps a New Year ’s Eve dish.

Duerr’s Manchester Marmalade
adapted from Telegrah.co.uk
I think that a jar of Duerr’s Manchester Marmalade would also make a lovely stocking filler too!

Duerr’s Manchester Marmalade

In addition to my drumsticks, I will also be trying out this festive glazed ham and these sweet festive marmalade puffs.


What’s your favourite festive recipe?


Review purposes only. No monetary compensation was received for this review. All opinions are strictly my own.


Saturday, 13 December 2014

15 Festive Favourites // Christmas Tag

manchester blogger


I was tagged in this 15 Festive Favourites by my blogging friend Keeley from Phat Cupcake
So let’s get my Merry Christmas on……..

1. Favourite Festive Food

It has to be Christmas Pudding with white sauce – too yummy! A few years ago I bought a load of reduced xmas puds after crimbo and enjoyed a bit every night for two weeks. I couldn’t work out why I was putting a lot of weight on until I checked the calories – my nightly treat was a whopping 500 calories! Needless to say, I will be having my pud and eating it this year but for one day only!

manchester blogger

2. Favourite Reindeer

I feel bit mean picking one reindeer over all the others but if I have to choose a favourite it simply has to be Prancer!

3. Favourite Day of Christmas

It definitely isn’t  “8 Maids a Milking” as I feel like a bloody milk maid at the present moment. I think it has to be “Ten Lords a Leaping” as it makes me giggle.

4. Favourite Christmas Song

Gotta be Fairytale Of New York by The Pogues & Kirsty McColl. I try to sing it in an Irish accent but I am pretty appalling at accents. And I don’t know any of the words. And I can’t sing.

manchester blogger


5. Favourite Present

When I was a kid I used to love reading under the covers at night with a torch long after I had been sent to bed. I asked Father Christmas for a mini TV so I could watch TV sneakily in bed and I nearly exploded with joy when I actually got one!

6. Favourite Festive Film

I don’t really like Christmas Films (bah humbug) but one that sticks in my mind is Santa Claus the Movie from 1985. I also love to watch Shrek repeats at Christmas and the Gruffalo makes me feel really festive.

7. Favourite Festive Cracker Toy

I always get a shoe horn. Rubbish.

8. Favourite Cracker Joke

Q: What is the difference between a snowman and snow-woman?
A: Snow balls.

9. Favourite Christmas Decoration

A little Christmas tree bauble that Pete bought with his pocket money when he was 7 years old from Marks and Spencer. Bless him.

10. Favourite Christmas Candle Scent

Glade Cosy Apple & Cinnamon Scent makes my house smell wonderful and I absolutely adore this Christmassy scent

11. Favourite Christmas TV Advert

It has gotta be the wee penguins which tugs at the old heart-strings the most. Please excuse me whilst I pop out to Sainsburys to purchase another needless box of mice pies…..

12. Favourite Festive Tradition

I think it’s leaving the old carrot, mince pie, and tot of sherry for Mr Claus. As a child, this little ritual sent us nearly hysterical with excitement and I am so excited to start these little traditions with Art.

13. Favourite Place to Spend Christmas

Home. This year is our first Christmas in a home which we own, and I will be the hostess with the mostess for 7 guests.


manchester baby blogger


14. Favourite Christmas Fact.

German parents hide a pickle in the Christmas tree on Christmas Eve and the first child who finds the pickle the next day receives a prize!


15. Favourite Snowman Accessory

Snow balls pahahaha (see previous gag).





I tag:

Dannii from Hungry Healthy Happy
Rebecca from The Lucky Rainbow
Nisha from How I Wear
manchester blogger



Avoiding the Knob

This video made me LOL as I can totally relate to it.

In public toilets, I always flush the loo with my foot! Weird but true.


Monday, 8 December 2014

Stocking Fillers for Girls

Check out my selection of wonderful girly treats and get filling up that stocking!



stocking filler ideas for teenage girls christmas xmas

stocking filler ideas for teenage girls christmas xmas

Sugar and Spice Flirty Feet Foot Spa Pedicure Set Includes:

1 Inflatable Foot Bath
1 Foot Polish
1 Foot Lotion
1 Bath Fizzer
2 Toe Separators
3 Cuticle Correctors
1 Pumice

stocking filler ideas for teenage girls christmas xmas
stocking filler ideas for teenage girls christmas xmas

stocking filler ideas for teenage girls christmas xmas

stocking filler ideas for teenage girls christmas xmas



Review purposes only. No monetary compensation was received for this review. All opinions are strictly my own.

Friday, 28 November 2014

Gentleman's Afternoon Tea


Posh Afternoon Tea in Manchester, North West, with a twist! Radisson edwardian
Afternoon tea with a gentlemanly twist at the OpusOne Restaurant Radisson Blu Edwardian, Manchester.

At the beginning of this week I was struggling with a small conundrum – I really wanted to go out for an afternoon tea comprising of sandwiches and cakes but I also wanted to spend the day with my Husband.

He always desires burger or steak and I therefore presumed he wouldn’t be keen on the pomp and circumstance of an afternoon that entailed sipping tea and nibbling on a French fancy.

How bloody amazing, then, is this Gentleman’s Afternoon Tea at the OpusOne Restaurant located in the Radisson Blu Edwardian, Manchester.

Instead of delicate pastries and cakes the hotel offers a scrummy selection of every man’s favourite grub; mini fish and chips, hearty pork pies served with chunky chutney and tasty mini Yorkshire puddings with beef and gravy. These are served alongside a selection of freshly prepared rustic sandwiches and classic scones with clotted cream and jam, which can be washed down with a pint of beer, champagne or various teas (they also offer a classic afternoon tea if this manly version doesn’t float your boat).

We both went for the Gent’s version and Pete opted for a pint whilst I stuck to tradition and had a pot of tea, and I thoroughly enjoyed trying Assam for the first time which was a nice change from PJ tips.

There was a LOT of food provided and I felt bad about leaving so much – although the waitress did offer to box up any left-overs for us.

There are so many places which offer afternoon tea these days but it felt a bit special to be sat in the 5* Radisson Hotel watching the world go by.


I’ve discovered that carol singers will be serenading guests on the 9th-11th, 16th-18th December at 12:30pm and 3:00pm if you want to make your afternoon even more special.

Posh Afternoon Tea in Manchester, North West, with a twist! Radisson edwardian
Posh Afternoon Tea in Manchester, North West, with a twist! Radisson edwardian
Posh Afternoon Tea in Manchester, North West, with a twist! Radisson edwardianPosh Afternoon Tea in Manchester, North West, with a twist! Radisson edwardian
Posh Afternoon Tea in Manchester, North West, with a twist! Radisson edwardian

Posh Afternoon Tea in Manchester, North West, with a twist! Radisson edwardian
Posh Afternoon Tea in Manchester, North West, with a twist! Radisson edwardian
Posh Afternoon Tea in Manchester, North West, with a twist! Radisson edwardian



Review purposes only. No monetary compensation was received for this review. All opinions are strictly my own.








Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Push Presents for Him

push present for him men man house of fraser

A while ago I blogged about the concept of giving “push presents” to new Mums as a thank you for their hard work of bringing baby into the world.

Mum gets a new handbag or perhaps a pair of earrings, but what about Dad?
Does Dad deserve a present too?

I think so.

I always knew that my Husband was going to be my rock during labour and he certainly didn’t disappoint me. I have yet to share my labour and delivery story on the blog but I can tell you that it involved multiple trips to and from hospital (very quickly), lots of back rubbing, and his remarkable ability to position the gas and air in one hand, jaffa cakes in the other, and seemingly understand which hand I wanted depending on the tone of my grunts.

That’s love for you.

So, yes, he deserves a well-earned treat in the form of this Clinique Great Skin for Him gift set. He’s not big on preening but always seems happy to use Clinique products (I think it’s because the packaging is macho) and the fact that it came from House of Fraser.

push present for him men man house of fraser

The set contains:
  • Face Scrub, 3.4 oz. / 100ml
  • Aloe Shave Gel, 4.2 oz. / 125 ml
  • Post-Shave Soother, 1.0 fl. oz. / 30 ml
  • Anti-Age Moisturizer, 1.0 fl. oz. / 30 ml
  • Dopp kit

push present for him men man house of fraser

With all the late nights a newborn baby brings, looking after our skin is important so this push present is particularly well-timed.


There are loads of gorgeous gift sets on the House of Fraser website which can help you to say THANK YOU to that special man in your life.

push present for him men man house of fraser





This review is in collaboration with House of Fraser. No imbursement was received for this review. All opinions are strictly my own