Tuesday, 26 September 2017

Starting the School Year {Getting Organised ft. Cheerz}

 The last few weeks have completely got away from me;
with our eldest starting school I feel like every bit of energy has been focused on it. The whole preparation has felt so long, getting everything he needs sorted, making sure he's happy and settled and then actually getting through the first week has been so much more draining, physically and emotionally, than I anticipated. I'm not sure if anyone else feels this way when their child starts school..please tell me it's not just me?!
Anyway the blog has suffered a little; as is the case when you work for yourself, you tend to put off everything you can and try to fit in work at crazy hours as there just isn't time in the day. I've been so tired recently I just haven't been able to muster up the energy to pull any late night blogging sessions and on top of which I have had a stint of headaches which really hasn't helped. 
I'm feeling better now TJ is finally in school and I'm starting to get my bearings being at home with just one child again, it's just so quiet! Something I've discovered about family life is that it is always changing; just when you've got the hang of something, a newborn, breastfeeding, a toddler, weaning, working from home, having one child, something changes and so does the whole dynamic. With the best intentions in the world, a routine only works for so long and then it's time to start a new one. It can be hard to keep up but at least life is always interesting!
So here I am now, starting at the beginning of the school year;
We were given a welcome pack which has a list of all the diary dates for the next year and of course I forgot the first one and only realised today when I saw a lot of queuing parents with very smart children; yeah it's photo day. Luckily the little man looked smart and let me do the stereotypical mum face wipe before he ran off to class. Silly Mama!
I am quite an organised person usually, (believe it or not!) but I do need to up my game. Thankfully my gorgeous new calendar from Cheerz arrived just in time- so I can actually remember whats happening and keep track of all these dates. 

It was super easy to personalise with some of our favourite pictures of the boys; you can also change the colour frames and add your own dates. I'm a little addicted to the Cheerz site as it is just so easy to use and the quality of the photos is always fantastic. You can even add yourself a hook to hang it on- super organised right? I've never had a personalised Calender before but having seen this one I think I'll need one every year!
I'll be spending this week getting on top of everything, but I'm sure it won't be long before everything changes up again..

P.S Here's a code for 10% off the Cheerz website (minimum spend £20) 84TE56 or use SAL8CR for £4 off your first order! (and Just so you know, this ones a Referral Code)

NB Post in Collaboration with Cheerz however all opinions are entirely our own

Monday, 25 September 2017

Autumn Days {ft. Stuffel Bags}

There's nothing like a beautiful September to set you off into Autumn;
Considering the end of Summer was a bit of a washout, it feels so good to see the sun albeit with a bit of a chill in the air. This week has been perfectly Autumnal although we've been so busy it's been hard to properly enjoy it. This month has all been about getting out eldest ready for school; meeting teachers, buying supplies (last minute of course!) and making sure forms are filled in. It'll be a hard and strange transition for all of us but one that  I'm hoping and praying proves a to be a great change and something TJ really thrives with. He is so excited and we've been really impressed so far with the School; he's starting on Thursday so I'm trying to keep a level head and keep myself busy(and not cry at the gates!) I think knowing that our full days together are coming to an end and made me pause a lot more during the day; leaving the tidying up to play or read a story just a bit more often. The age gap between the boys seems to have been closing over the Summer, and although there's a lot of squabbling over toys/lids/empty shampoo bottles they actually do play together quite often. As long as I keep a watchful eye over Little E, he loves playing Lego with his brother. I think he just wants to copy whatever he see's him doing, so he tries really hard to build things and watches his brother with intense concentration! Lego is a big part of our lives in this House; TJ has been literally obsessed with it since he saw it occupying shelves in his Dad's office and he has only grown to love it even more. He builds Lego from the moment he gets up, has a whole scene set up in his room and always asks for it at Christmas and for his Birthday. I am so impressed by the things he creates from his own imagination and I think its one of those really great toys that everyone can enjoy.
Clearing it away is the biggest problem as apparently the best way to play with it is spread out out on the floor, so naturally when I saw these Stuffel Bags I knew they'd be a brilliant solution.
They're heavy cotton and make tidying away a mountain of Duplo, Lego or any other toys so much easier. The novelty also means little people are much happier to tidy away their toys!
  Yesterday was lovely and Sunny so after a morning at home we decided to head out for a little Picnic; It wasn't very well planned, just a few snacks and sandwiches from our local Sainsburys; but the Stuffel proved to be the perfect bag for carrying our supplies and Picnic Blanket. We had a lovely time sitting under the trees and playing on the grass. The Stuffel was the perfect size for us and although the grass was a little damp kept our sarnies dry!
I'm relishing in these days together but I'm sure we'll appreciate our new routine once it comes around; I think the most important thing is our intention to always make the most of our time with our children whether they're at home or at school. These precious days with our little ones just fly by so quickly.

NB Post in Collaboration with Stuffel however all opinions are entirely our own

Thursday, 7 September 2017

Mama's & Makers {#1 Little Dot Company}

Ever since I started blogging I've been amazed by the amount of successful small businesses there are on social media. One of the things I love about the internet is that it has given so many people the opportunity to share their talents and run their business from home without being put off by having to pay to rent a space or shop while they are still growing. Having the chance to see how people respond to your products and gain more confidence is a huge help when you're trying to set yourself up- I'm speaking from experience as a small Etsy shop owner myself. 
The other thing I was impressed by was just how many Mama's there are out there running their own businesses - either full or part time but always whilst chasing after their little ones. It inspired me a lot, and still does. I think at the heart of any mama trying to set herself up is the desire to be your own boss; to set the rules; to work at your own pace. It gives you that degree of flexibility to work around family life. That's not to say it's easier, as generally you have to find the time to complete orders at some point; late nights are common if you unexpectedly get a surge in sales!
I love being able to make something that someone else not only likes but is happy enough to buy with their well earned pennies, even in this day and age its a big deal! Of course we sit up late at night, creating and packaging and sorting to make our contribution to the family money pot but there's also so much heart and soul that goes into what we make. It's ours, and every thing we carefully put together and send out has a little bit of ourselves in it; it's hard work but really rewarding seeing your vision come to life. 
Though the lovely window of social media I've come across so many inspiring and brilliant Mama's who make so I've decided to use this little blog of mine to show them some support by sharing their work. I'll be sharing a series of posts about some of my favourite Mama's and makers and their lovely creations. Hopefully you'll be introduced to some fabulous small businesses and be inspired to shop independent- or start one yourself! 

This week I'm sharing with you Little Dot Company - a clothing and accessories shop for Mums, Dads and their little people. 
Beth Campagna is Mum to two Isabella (little Dot) who is two and Teddy who is Five. 
The concept of Little Dot Company is to journey with you from Baby Shower, to baby to parenthood.
The increase in the Baby shower trend over the last few years inspired Beth to create her own range of coordinating accessories, before moving on to her own clothing range, some of which are inspired by her little ones being "non-sleepers"!  Beth stocks an adorable line of tots apparel with hilarious slogans and her "need more sleep" tops for tired Mama's have been hugely popular, being spotted on one of my favourite bloggers Katie at mummydaddyme and footballers wife Rebecca Vardy
Beth's describes her designs as a "Tongue in cheek nod to the sleep deprived Mama" and the tired mama movement; Beth saw a gap in the market for cool clothes for Mama's with a twist, combining modern styles with a cheeky recognition of the Mama life. She's since expanded the range to include a Dad collection and even something for the Grandma's!
Little Dot Company also supports charities such as Kicks count and mental health charities, with donations from their sales; Beth recently wrote for the Huff Post about her own experiences of depression in her family and raises awareness though her blog to encourage Mums to support each other through motherhood and speak up about anxiety and post-natal depression.

 "...it's important we stick together and find ways of supporting and raising awareness of coping with mental health. Hearing other people's stories of their experience with post-natal depression or anxiety can be a comfort for anyone going through it. Sometimes it feels a relief to know you are not alone. "

This little company has a big heart and I'm sure I'm sure there are exciting things to come for Beth and her business. There's definitely going to be a some Mama wear on my Christmas list, and as I'm at that stage where I get to pick my little ones clothes, some twinning outfits, as I'm a cool Mum like that! 
Thank's to Beth for sharing her Mama made business with us; do pop over to Little Dot Company and check out their Facebook page too!
Do you know any brilliant Mama's who make? Or are you your own boss? 
I love to check out new independent shops so let me know below or drop me an email!
#supportsmall !


Wednesday, 6 September 2017

Keeping Track {ft.Watchu}


Sunday, 3 September 2017

The Mama Uniform

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