Bloggers Who Care

There is a lovely blogger named Amy that I encountered on twitter (@blogsbyamy_). Amy is a fashion and beauty blogger and if you’d like to read her blog you can find it here. She has recently put together self care packages and I received mine yesterday morning.

The package was so cute, arriving in a pink postal bag with a yellow label. Inside there was a note addressed to me and a little list of the items inside.

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There were three beautiful quotes printed on photo paper which I can’t wait to frame; 2 wax melts (I don’t have a wax burner at the moment but this gives me the perfect excuse to purchase one); a teabag to take a little break and have a relaxing drink; a pack of love heart sweets and a garnier face mask.

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The items are so thoughtful, everything you need for a little pamper evening. I can’t wait to have a sit down with a lovely cup of tea, the gorgeous smell of the wax melts and a face mask on. The wax melts were bubble wrapped to ensure they reached me whole and the business card she included had the most gorgeous pink glitter back. All in all a lovely service and a wonderful product.

Feeding the Family

Anyone who had their own place knows that there are A LOT of bills to pay. Rent, Council tax, TV license, gas, electric, water  and food shopping and they are just the obvious ones.

So I don’t like throwing food away. I wrote a post about a tagine I found a meal kit for in Marks and Spencer’s. I liked it so much I went back and bought 3 more kits (good vegetarian meal ideas are hard to come by).

I made the tagine last night and there was a bit left over so I decided to use it to make myself a kind of vegetarian shepherds pie and it couldn’t have been easier. All it took was an oven proof dish and some microwave frozen mash potato.

I put a sprinkle of grated cheese cheese over the top and popped it in the oven for twenty minutes it crisp up. It was delicious. How do you save money on the food shopping?

We ❤️ Ella’s Kitchen

Now that Amelia’s started having 2 ‘meals’ a day we have started introducing more variety. The docotors said that when Amelia was three months the old the best thing for her reflux was heavier milk and baby porridge. She has every flavour baby porridge available; plain, banana, apricot, summer fruits, orange. She also loves yoghurts.

As her coordination has got better and now that she’s a bit older she also has some foods that she can eat herself. Amelia loves Farleys Rusks – what baby doesn’t? – and like with her nappies I discover Ella’s kitchen thanks to another mum blogger.

Ella’s kitchen is a brand of baby food that uses all natural ingredients. They contain low amounts of sugar and fat and have a range of crisps that are perfect finger foods. Amelia loves the carrot and sweetcorn puffs.

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We also found these new flavours to try

Where has my tiny baby gone?

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My Birthday Weekend: Part 2

Saturday morning we carried on the birthday celebrations and Amelia, Rob and I went out for breakfast. She was a little terror, insisting on sitting on my lap the whole time and knocking a glass of orange juice over.

On my actual birthday Amelia was an angel. We went out for dinner and she spent the entire meal asleep in her pushchair. I I received so many cards and presents and Amelia was spoiled with cuddles.

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Mum had a cake made which was a mass of cream, chocolate and strawberries. Who wouldn’t love that?

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I had a wonderful birthday and it got me thinking about Amelia’s first birthday. She looked so pretty in her little pink dress and she loved my helium balloon so I think a little first birthday party will be in order. I can’t wait, especially as she will be able to try all the party food and will hopefully be walking by then.

My Birthday Weekend: Part 1

So what did I actually do for my 21st birthday?

Well as you can imagine I wanted to spend it with my little princess. My birthday was Sunday 15th, but we started celebrating a few days before.

We started off by going shopping with my mum on the Friday, Amelia and I, a girls day out to lakeside shopping centre. Mum wanted to treat me for my birthday so she bought me some new clothes and a few other bits that I picked out.

Lakesides biggest draw by far is the huge Primark. It’s spread over three floors and stocks so many different items it’s impossible to know where to start looking. The lingerie section alone is the size of one floor in my more local Primark. Despite going shopping for clothes for me we obviously ended up in the baby section first and didn’t return empty handed. Amelia ended up with an entire outfit courtesy of her nanny, a Minnie Mouse tracksuit and matching shoes.

When we finally made it to the women’s section I was spoilt for choice. I know Primark is not everyone’s shop of choice but with a reflux baby I refuse to let anyone buy me expensive clothes; they all look the same with baby sick on regardless of cost. (That said I am very fussy with my jeans and always go to Topshops petite section) We ended up with three big bags full of clothes and jewellery – I’m terrible for loosing earrings so primark is the perfect place to stock up – and had to make a trip back to the car to unload before getting lunch.

Lunch had to be Pizza Hut for mum and I. Amelia had a little packed lunch consisting of her milk, a yoghurt, a Farleys rusk, banana and a giant carrot and sweet corn puff from Ella’s Kitchen.

 

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Below are just a few of the bits mum got me: pyjamas, a bralet and matching bottoms, rainbow highlighter, frilly socks, a pretty belly bar and nail varnish. If you’re looking to restock your wardrobe Lakeside shopping centre is definitely the place to go.

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21 for 21

In honour of today being my 21st birthday I thought I’d made a list of 21 things I am proud of to have achieved. Some of them are silly and some of them are more serious. Obviously having my titchy princess is one of the most important ones.

1) I got 1 A* 4A 5B and 1C at GCSE
2) I got distinction distinction distinction* at college
3) Worked part time since I was 14
4) Passed first year of uni
5) Moved out
6) We have lived in our own flat for 3 months and we have only had take away for dinner a handful of times – I’ve actually cooked nearly every night!
7) Had my little titchy princess
8) Had emergency surgery and got through it smiling
9) Managed to work until 32 weeks pregnant despite being on crutches
10) Passed my driving test – this was not easy. My first driving instructor was horrible and asked me why I hadn’t told him I had special needs. Rude regardless of what form of disability I may have had. He actually just made me nervous but that’s besides the point.
11) Bought my own car (3 times!!) last year I treated myself to a 16 plate and it’s wonderful knowing Amelia is in a car that runs properly and isn’t falling apart like my previous 2 cars
12) Took my family to Spain on holiday
13) Worked as a civil servant for a year
14) Despite being terrified of needles I managed to let my mum injection me every night for 10 days after having Amelia (not sure anyone else would class this as an achievement but as someone who use to pass out watching her mum give blood I’m pretty proud)
15) Successfully navigated the London Underground with Amelia when she was only 6 weeks old

16) Made all of Amelias first blankets by hand
17) Endured literally hundreds of blood tests, biopsies, scans, nerve studies and ECGS before being diagnosed with a muscle disease
18) Went to Poland whist pregnant in spite of travel sickness and morning sickness
19) Started my blog – I’ve received two products to review already!
20) Looked after my fluffy babies, Amelia’s uncle pigs, for two years
21) Taken Amelia out everyday for fresh air, despite the urge to hibernate in our flat in my pyjamas all day

To Veggie or Not to Veggie?

I have been vegetarian for nearly eight years. For the first year I ate fish and on a couple of occasions during my pregnancy I ate mackerel – I craved it and anyone who has been pregnant or has interacted with a pregnant woman knows cravings are not to be messed with.

As Amelia gets older we are asked increasingly often whether we will raise her on a vegetarian or meat based diet. Rob, the dad she adores and my other half , is most definitely not vegetarian. Yesterday morning was a perfect testament to this as I made him not one but two bacon sandwiches for breakfast.

Rob lets me decide most things related to Amelia as he believes I know the most about babies out of the two of us. Vegetarianism and babies is a very unpopular topic. I have been told numerous times by people that obviously don’t know much about a healthy diet that not allowing her to eat meat would make her extremely poorly. However my midwife made it very clear to me throughout my pregnancy that being vegetarian was perfectly healthy for me and baby provided I ate a balanced diet. She even said that changing my diet to include lots of meat just because I was pregnant was not advisable; it was likely to make me sick and my body just wouldn’t know what to do with it. So anyone who tells me it is not healthy for Amelia would be very wrong.

That said I am not going to stop her eating meat. Her dad does not eat meat everyday as I will not cook it everyday so she will have it when ever he does. If she decides she’d rather eat what I am eating then she is welcome to that too. She’s a little person and is welcome to chose whichever version of the meal that she’d prefer.

Last night I made a vegetarian tagine using a wonderful meal kit from Marks and Spencers. Instead of using chicken I used quorn chicken fillets and rob was quite happy with that.

This idea that we must eat meat with every meal is a bit silly. It’s expensive, often full of unnecessary amounts of fat and is very limiting. There are so many meat free foods to try. Why limit yourself to the traditional meat and two veg type dinner when you could try so many other things?

Canterbury Food and Drink Festival

Canterbury food and drink festival is an annual event that’s staged in Dane John gardens and runs for an entire weekend at the end of September each year.

I went last year for the first time, having found out about it since starting uni in Canterbury. Although children are welcome we decided it wasn’t really the best place to be taking Amelia – gardens and pushchairs aren’t a great mix and with a lot of alcohol on sale we weren’t sure it was the right environment for a five month old – so little lady spent the afternoon with her nanny.

There were so many food stalls to chose from, even as a vegetarian, and the array of local produce and ciders to select from was almost overwhelming. The food is cooked at the stalls and the aromas coming from some of the tents were amazing. My one complaint about this was it was extremely hard to identify which delicious smell was coming from which stall due to the number of dishes available.

I’d heard a lot of people talking about how good the vegan burger stall was so this year I decided to try it for myself. It didn’t disappoint. Having never had vegan cheese before I wasn’t sure what to expect from my cheeseburger, but honestly it didn’t taste much different to the cheese I normally use at home. Rob had a kebab type thing but instead of the long strips of unidentifiable meat from the takeaway this had slices of chorizo, pork and pieces of chicken in it.

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We found a really good cherry cider – home brewed and nothing like what you’d buy in a supermarket. It tasted lovely but felt so much stronger than what we usually drink. I had half a pint and had to leave it another three hours, a burger and some popcorn later before I was happy to drive. We did however buy a carton to bring home. Last year we kept saying we wished we’d got some to bring home so this year we made sure to.

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We completed the day with a trip to the shops – we couldn’t return home without something for our little princess. We found her the cutest pair of pyjamas in primark, perfect for the winter.

It was lovely to spend the afternoon and evening together as a couple and Amelia had a lovely time with her nanny. As nice as the day together was, it was wonderful going home to cuddles with our titchy princess.