My Birthday Wishlist

21:01 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

My birthday isn't until the end of March but, already, the questions from my nearest and dearest have started. What would you like? Is there anything you need? Apparently I'm hard to buy for, I don't see it myself. I'm always a bit grumpy about being asked what I want as I love receiving surprises but, this year, I thought I'd help them out a bit with a few ideas. You might also gain some inspiration if you're looking for any 37th birthday presents for the women in your life!

Kate Spade and Seiko Ladies Watches from The Watch Hut
The first item on my list is a new watch. I don't wear watches a lot but, when I'm out and about, pushing a pram, it's much easier to glance at my wrist than it is to stop, get my phone out of my pocket, check it and put it back, then get on my way again. It might mean I actually get to Nursery in plenty of time to collect Bud instead of on the last minute too! I really love this Kate Spade watch (left) from The Watch Hut but I suspect the Seiko watch (right) might be more in my gift's budget! I love the gold bracelets on both of the watches and think they would be great for wearing with both casual and more formal outfits.

I love clothes and I'm becoming a huge fan of wearing dresses rather than jeans or trousers. I'm always on the look out for a dress or two to add to my collection. As my birthday falls at the start of spring I'm keen to get a couple of cotton dresses and I love this butterfly print dress from Yours Clothing. They seem to have a few dresses which feature either butterfly or dragonfly prints at the moment, these are a favourite of mine so I'll definitely be checking them out.

If not dresses then pyjamas are always warmly received, there is nothing better than a brand new, cozy pair of PJs to curl up in after celebrating your birthday. I'm also a huge fan of fluffy socks and always love unwrapping a pair or two of those.

I love to read and, despite owning a Kobo Mini, I still love receiving paperbacks as gifts. You can't unwrap a download! I have my eye on the new Kate Atkinson novel - Life After Life - and The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton. I'm desperate to play Animal Crossing: New Leaf but it won't work on my Nintendo DSLite so I might have to add a 3DS to my list too!

Failing that I love good chocolate - especially Hotel Chocolat and Green & Blacks (their Butterscotch bar is my favourite and I was delighted to find a bar of it in my Bloggers Night In goodies). Failing that then a bottle of Sauvignon Blanc, Prosecco, like the one from I Heart Wines, or some MyCocktail Lime MarGOrita pouches to freeze and enjoy (we tried the latter two at our Bloggers Night in too) and I'm a happy birthday girl.

Hard to buy for? I don't think so!

Disclosure: This post contains a sponsored link, affiliate links and PR samples

Little Miss' Floppy Larynx

17:57 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

When Little Miss was just four weeks old I took her to see our GP with a persistent cold and cough. I was expecting to receive antibiotics for the cough and to be sent on our way. Instead our GP, the paediatric specialist in our surgery, sent us to the Children's Assessment Unit at our local hospital as he was unhappy at the sound of her breathing. We sat at the hospital for four hours, had two junior doctors listen to LM's chest and nurses carry out observations, only to be sent on our way by the second of the doctors with a diagnosis - 'it's just laryngomalacia, it's quite common, don't worry about it, she will grow out of it.'

LM and her Daddy waiting at the hospital floppy larynx laryngomalacia

Laryngomalacia, or Floppy Larynx, is - 'a condition in which the tissues of the entrance of the larynx collapse into the airway when the child breathes in. This gives rise to noisy breathing (stridor).' It is caused by a congenital defect which causes the laryngeal muscles to not fully develop before birth. Most instances correct themselves by the age of two as children grow and their muscles strengthen.

When we attended our eight week check I asked our GP to explain the diagnosis. He told me that the condition isn't that common. He had seen more cases during his training time in a paediatric hospital rotation  as diagnosis often comes after a baby is presented to hospital with a chest infection or breathing difficulties. By this time I had done my fair share of Googling for information and found out everything I was told by our GP before the appointment. Most cases right themselves by the age of two, it can cause reflux and often babies who are diagnosed are automatically medicated for that condition, a small number of children don't get better as they grow to the age of two. Our GP stated that he didn't think it was cause for concern as LM was gaining weight and was a happy and healthy baby. He asked us to come back at six months if we were concerned.

At six months, LM's stridor was about the same as at her initial diagnosis. It had worsened, then improved, just as predicted and, thankfully, apart from two weeks of silent reflux, we managed to escape that particular symptom. I didn't book her in as I felt that the condition was on track for her to grow out of it by the age of two.

My funny, feisty sixteen month old Little Miss floppy larynx laryngomalacia

Ten months on I'm now not so sure. LM is now sixteen months. She is a tiny girl, wearing 9-12 months clothes (and, actually, would still fit in much of her 6-9 month clothing I think), she eats like a horse but grows slowly. Her stridor is still loud and we can hear her snoring when she is asleep in bed upstairs and we are in the lounge. She doesn't speak very much. I know we shouldn't compare our children but Bud started talking at nine months and hasn't stopped since. Her main form of communication is to point and grunt. I have no concerns about her understanding but I feel sure that she should be saying a little more than she is at the moment. Before Christmas we revisited the GP to express our concerns. I think she was rather taken aback to see us and admitted that she had no familiarity with the conditions, stating that she had never seen a family 'come back' with a floppy larynx, assuming that previous cases had corrected themselves. So, in front of us, she turned to and Wikipedia, just as I had all those months ago. In the end she thought that, as LM had only been walking for about six weeks, we needed to give her chance to be upright and see if that helped to strengthen her laryngeal muscles. We agreed that we would visit again when LM turns two to see if it has improved.

A month later I'm feeling more and more confused about the condition. We've never had a formal diagnosis of Laryngomalacia, it's only ever been confirmed by doctors listening to LM's chest and observing her breathing. I have a daughter who is small for her age even though she was 9 lbs 3 oz at birth, She doesn't speak much, surely weaker larynx muscles might affect her ability to learn to talk? I'm feeling let down and like I'm failing my daughter. I know it's not a life threatening condition but I'm tired of being made to feel like her noisy breathing is a 'cosmetic' issue by doctors who admit to knowing little about it. We don't know if that is the reason she is small or the reason she doesn't talk. Back to the GP we go, to fight for an ENT referral this time...

Win Fabulous Fitflops!

22:52 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

Last Summer I discovered two things, the first was that I could wear flip flops, after years of thinking that they were too uncomfortable. The second thing was that I didn't actually want to wear any old flip flops, I just wanted to wear Fitflops!

Fitflop logo

Fitflop have been around for over six years now and have expanded their range, from their original Fitflop sandals greatly to include mules, shoes and boots. I have a pair of the Lulu range of sandals which I wore all through last Summer and I'm looking forward to walking around in comfort again in this Summer. All Fitflops contain their unique ergonomic, super-cushioned midsole technology.These 'microwobbleboard midsoles' help to diffuse underfoot pressure which makes them super comfortable to wear. I have genuinely never had a pair of sandals which have been so comfortable.

When Fitflop got in touch to offer me the opportunity to give away a pair of their shoes to one of my readers I was delighted to do so. I was invited to choose a pair of Fitflops to give away and, as I've fallen a little in love with their Flora sandals I chose those. They are available in five different colours - black, ultra orange, tan, rio pink and urban white - and feature laser cut leather uppers which were inspired by Brazilian carnival costumes. These shoes are going to be perfect for a Summer which will see all eyes on Brazil when they host the FIFA World Cup.

Fiflop Flora Sandals in Rio Pink

In order to have the chance to win these fantastic Flora sandals in the colour of your choice simply complete the Rafflecopter widget below. The blog post comment is compulsory and completion of this will unlock a variety of additional entries. Please read the terms and conditions. Good luck!

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Planning Summer Holidays

13:34 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

Life hasn't been very kind to us on the holiday front in recent years, in fact, the longest we've managed to get away for since LM was born is two nights! We're considering our Summer plans at the moment and Ian and I both agree that we'd like to get away as a family for at least seven nights. We might even look at going abroad!

With Bud now in nursery we aren't limited to school holidays but, obviously, we'd like to get some sunshine so a holiday in June might be ideal. When I was a teenager I spent three months working in Spain. It's such a beautiful country and I'd love to take my family to see some of my old haunts. I always like to look for somewhere a little out of the ordinary when we go away and, as a family that loves camping I've been looking at mobile home campsites, like those offered by Al Fresco Holidays. We'd love somewhere by the sea, to use as a base, without being tied into hotel catering.

Sagrada Familia Barcelona from RGBStock

The Costa Brava and Costa Dorada are gorgeous areas of Spain, with so much to see and do. I know Barcelona well and I'd love to take the children to see the Nou Camp, Parc Guell and the Olympic Stadium, as well as the chance to drink Cava and eat tapas too! Ian is an adrenaline junkie and I know he would love the opportunity to visit the Port Aventura theme park, home to Shambhala, the highest roller coaster in Europe! Last time I visited the park I had no excuse to avoid the rollercoasters so visiting with Bud and LM will mean I can send Red Rose Daddy on the rides while I watch them.

Placa Real, Barcelona from RGB Stock

Bud and Little Miss have never spent much time at the beach and we really want to make sure that we do so on our next holiday so they get the full 'sand between your toes' experience. The beauty of North West Spain is that, in theory, we wouldn't need to fly and hire a car, we could drive down and break the journey up in France. A campsite would be the perfect way to save money on accommodation and really enjoy our holiday.

Where are you going on holiday this year? Would you consider mobile home accommodation?

Disclaimer:  I received a gift in exchange for this post

Style and Savings from Wauwaa

23:05 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

Shortly before Christmas I was invited to try out a brand new website which offers the best of parenting tips and advice and combines it with fantastic savings in a range of limited time sales. breaks posts down into age groups and gender, using a handy scroll bar on the top of the screen you simply slide it from pregnancy up to five years, choose '?' if you don't know the gender, boy or girl and then the site returns information appropriate to the age of your child. Much of the information is curated from other sources - including blogs just like this one - and, as more posts are added, it will provide a handy, one stop shop for advice and guidance on all aspects of parenting. You will also find a selection of video posts on there, if you prefer to view rather than read.

In addition to parenting advice the site features a shop which offers heavily discounted sales for a limited time period. Wauwaa supplied me with a voucher to go shopping so I was delighted to pick out some new clothes for Little Miss. At the time I looked there were a few sales on and my eye was immediately caught by those for Mini Vanilla and Toby Tiger. When you click through to the Wauwaa shop you can search by category (clothing/other), age or simply by the featured brands. I quickly clicked on age 12-18 months and went exploring. Both Toby Tiger and Mini Vanilla had so many beautiful clothes and I was taken by some  pyjamas from the latter sale. I was rather spoilt for choice on the Toby Tiger sale and ended up selecting a gorgeous pair of floral dungarees, it was a tough choice between that and a beautiful stripy dress though.

Wauwaa sales Toby Tiger dress and dungarees Mini Vanilla Pyjamas

I was really hoping that Little Miss would fit into these clothes so I could show her off in them but she's still too tiny and still wearing 9-12 months. I can't wait until they fit though! 

The shopping process was simple to complete and email confirmation was received immediately. As soon as my items were despatched I received a shipping email, complete with Royal Mail tracking information. Many limited time sale sites take a few weeks for your items to arrive but my parcel took just over two weeks. I was happy with this as I wasn't waiting for the items for a particular time.

The range of sales seems to be rapidly expanding on Wauwaa. At the moment you can choose from ranges as diverse as Crocs, to Bubbaroo (I am delighted to see the fabulous Bubbaroo Joey Swag on sale), Cuddledry and Cozyosko's very interesting looking multi-function footmuffs.  

Wauwaa Current Sales Bubbaroo Cozyosko Cuddledry Crocs

I'm so pleased to see that there is a wider range being brought into the sales, with items for older children and parents alongside those for toddlers and babies. I can see me returning to the Wauwaa sales again and again to look for bargains in the future.

Are you a fan of limited time sales? Which brands would you love to see on Wauwaa?

Disclaimer: I was supplied with a voucher to purchase these items. All opinions are honest and unbiased.

Three Steps to a Perfect Family Kitchen

18:34 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

Everyone wants a perfect kitchen. It’s where your family gathers, where you might guide your kids through homework sessions and cooking lessons, enjoy celebrations and nourish your family and friends. Any family home needs to have a properly functioning, efficient, comfortable and beautiful kitchen in it.

Once you have a family, the kitchen is the heart of the home. Having a family kitchen is quite different from the kind of set up you would have had before your brood swelled. While designing it, therefore, you need to ensure your kitchen has three things: durability, the ability to withstand the intense energy of children and be easy to clean.


A kitchen isn’t a good one unless it can happily weather years and years of dedicated use. Your kitchen is going to take a sustained beating for a long time, so it has to be built to last. With this in mind, you’ll have to make a lot of decisions about the fittings and appliances based on how durable they are going to be over the next few years.

For example, don’t go for sprayed or hand-painted unit doors: they will inevitably be knocked and chipped. Likewise, your worktops are going to have to be solid and tough, in order to handle hot pans and the like being placed on top of them. You may find that the worktop you end up with may not be as pretty as you originally envisioned. This doesn’t matter: ultimately, durability is what you want.

Making your kitchen childproof

Making your kitchen durable for extended use is one thing: making it durable against children is another. Usually, you’ll have to employ a series of small touches in order to make it child-resistant and child-friendly.

· Childproof unit handles are essential. Kids usually tear around the house, no matter how much you warn them not to. As a result, they run the risk of getting their clothing caught on large unit handles, which can lead to nasty falls. Go for smaller handles to avoid accidents.

· Keep your detergents and cleaning products locked up. This is essential if you have kids in the house. When you’re designing the kitchen layout, make sure there are a couple of high cabinets installed. Likewise, glassware and china should be also stored in high places.

Brought to you in collaboration with Sainsbury's

Olly the Little White Van

18:06 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

I think most parents of pre-schoolers will probably be aware of Olly the Little White Van, a cartoon show featuring the title character and his friends, living in the town of Bumpton. Olly is voiced by children's favourite Justin Fletcher who brings his usual charm and wit to the role. We first became aware of it on Cartoonito but the series can also be seen on Milkshake and Boomerang.

Olly the Little White Van
Olly the Little White Van helps his friends as much as he can. He isn’t a racing car or fire engine, but he and his driver Stan are very good at helping everyone out, every day. Like an enthusiastic puppy he bounds around the village of Bumpton talking to everyone, and is happiest when he is setting up a new bus service to the seaside, helping Alice when she is preparing for her driving test, or sprucing up an old VW.
We were recently sent a DVD featuring a range of episodes, including eight never before seen and Bud was really pleased with it, and the opportunity to watch Olly 'whenever I want to Mummy!' The show is aimed at children aged between two and six and I would say it is pitched perfectly for that age group. Each episode lasts only five minutes, which is very short but the perfect length to tell each story and act as a quick TV break. Life doesn't always go Olly's way but he is always thoughtful and tries his best. With a song in each episode even Little Miss, at sixteen months, enjoys dancing along to the music. We're huge Olly fans and the DVD and new episodes are just as good as those that have gone before, we'll definitely be trying to catch the new episodes when they air on Milkshake.

In addition to the TV episodes Olly the Little White Van will be showing in cinemas with two half hour specials premiering in Picturehouse Cinemas on 24th February. For a complete list of screenings please see

The Olly the Little White Van website is also a favourite of Bud's. It features fun and games, episode clips and a parents zone to support your child when watching the show. Bud's favourite game is Jethro's Jigsaw Japes, because it features his favourite character. You can also find out exactly when Olly is being shown on TV in the 'On TV' section.

Do your children like Olly the Little White Van? Who is their favourite character?

Disclaimer: We received a DVD but all thoughts and opinions are our own.

Dentinox Eye Wipes for Clean Eyes with No Drama

12:47 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

Cleaning your baby's eyes is a necessary  part of the your child's daily hygiene routine, and one that becomes increasingly important if your child has a cold as 'gunky' eyes can be uncomfortable and at risk from infection.

Little Miss Beautiful EyesLittle Miss has beautiful eyes (and yes, I know I'm biased) and loves her sleep so much that it often leaves her with stubborn chunks of 'sleep' in the corners of her eyes. This, added to a heavy cold over the last week or so means that her eyes have been bleary and a bit sore. Ordinarily I would soothe her eyes using some cool boiled water, with a little salt added, on a cotton wool pad but this is time consuming - boiling a kettle, waiting for the water to cool then the cleaning itself so I definitely wanted to try this more convenient solution from Dentinox.

Dentinox Eye Wipes

Dentinox are a trusted brand in the baby market for us. We've used their teething gel and toothpaste with both Bud and Little Miss. Dentinox eye wipes come individually foil wrapped in a box of twelve. This means that each wipe is sterile and ready to use with a simple tear open packet. The wipes contain saline and, to clean the eye, you simply wipe from the inner corner of the eye to the outer corner, then use a new wipe for the other eye. This is especially important if your child has an eye infection. 

Dentinox Eye Wipes

Little Miss hates having her face washed and will fight whoever tries to do this. These wipes are so quick and easy to use that her eyes were cleaned almost before she realised what I was up to! The fact that they are individually wrapped means that they are easy to slip into a pocket in your changing bag, ideal in case you need to clean eyes on the go. I've used these to clean Little Miss' eyes and ears too in the last week, a virus has left her with very waxy ears and the wipes were perfect to clean that away too. I'd definitely buy these and will be adding them to my changing bag kit too.

I am reviewing this product as part of a paid project with Britmums and Dentinox, I have not been told what to write and all thoughts and opinions are genuine and my own. 

Antalya: Family Fun in the Sun

23:38 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

The summer holiday brochure is packed with family-friendly holidays that are ideal for kids of all ages, from tots and toddlers right up to teens. Some of the best family hotels offer great on-site activities and local amenities to keep all ages entertained - even moody teenagers! - and Antalya holidays are no different.

Ruins in Antalya, Turkey

Based on Turkey's sparkling southwest coast, this Mediterranean city is Turkey's biggest international sea resort. Its position on the Turkish Riviera means the Antalya region is blessed with a warm climate, a stunning coastline and fantastic scenery - both natural and manmade. Excavations suggest that the city was founded in 150 BC, although more recent discoveries show that it was probably inhabited even earlier. Whether or not your kids are old enough to understand the Ancient Greeks and Turkey's fascinating heritage, they can certainly have some swashbuckling fun exploring Antalya's myriad of ancient castles, forts and crumbling ruins.

But Antalya holidays aren't all about looking back. For families looking for a modern child-friendly environment, Antalya certainly ticks all the right boxes. You'll find a smattering of well-equipped beach resorts along Antalya's stunning coastline, such as Side with its glorious beach, and Alanya - treasured for its dramatic coastal scenery and adrenalin-pumping watersports.

For families, many resorts and hotels are equipped with local attractions to keep the little ones entertained such as on-site kids' clubs. And for Mum and Dad there are plenty of local amenities on-hand and plenty of great cafes and restaurants too.

What's more, Antalya holidays are among the more affordable option in the summer holiday brochure - perfect for families on a shoestring.

Find out more about Antalya holidays for families by searching online at You'll find that Thomas Cook packages are wonderfully diverse, offering a wide selection of holidays to Antalya to suit various tastes and budgets. Families in particular will have a wealth of choice - which gives you the perfect start to your summer holiday escapades.

Guest Post Collaboration.

Midweek Meals with McCain French Fries

22:49 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

Sometimes you just need a quick, tasty, midweek meal that's easy to get ready and feed the family fast. McCain have got their thinking caps on and have come up with four family friendly recipes, using their oven cooked French Fries as an accompaniment. We were invited to try out one of the recipes and I opted for Crispy Pollock Fish Fingers in Tortilla Salad Wraps.

Serves: 4
Preparation time: 5 minutes
Cooking time: 20 minutes


  • 400g fresh pollock fillet cut into 8 strips (we couldn't find pollock so used cod instead)
  • 1 beaten egg
  • 100g cornflakes, crushed finely 
  • 4 Tortilla wraps 
  • Dollop of mayonnaise 
  • Salad leaves
  • Cherry Tomatoes
  • Cooked peas
  • 480g bag of McCain French Fries


Preheat your oven to 220°C.
Place the crushed cornflakes in a dish.
Dip each fish strip into the egg and then into the cornflake crumbs to coat the pieces evenly. (I found that the cod strips broke up when I did this so we ended up with cod bites instead of cod fingers)
Place the fish strips on a lightly oiled oven sheet. 

Bake in the oven with the McCain French Fries for approx 15-20 minutes.
When the fish is cooked, take each tortilla wrap and spread with some mayonnaise, salad
leaves, baby tomatoes and a few peas, add two fish fingers to each and make a roll.
Serve with McCain French Fries.

We thoroughly enjoyed the meal and, with a preparation and cooking time of less than thirty minutes it was a really easy way to feed my family a tasty meal. I'll definitely be using the cornflake coating again but may try it with chicken next time. The McCain French Fries were tasty and a very easy meal accompaniment. I'd definitely recommend them. Everyone in the family ate the meal well, and Bud especially, ate more vegetables than he ordinarily would! A success on all counts.

If you're looking for other quick meals using McCain French Fries then my friend Eileen has been cooking  Oriental Twist Chicken with Crunchy Crumb.

Disclaimer: We were supplied with the ingredients to create the recipe, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

Win with Heroes of the City

17:12 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

Heroes of the City is a new children's TV show aimed at children aged between three and seven. Set in a city populated by rescue vehicles, everyone gets the chance to be a hero. The main characters include Paulie Police Car and Fiona Fire Engine, joined by their accident-prone friend Calamity Crow. The series is now entering it's second series, following the hugely successful first series which saw it sold to over 180 countries!

Recently Heroes of the City launched their first apps, for Apple and Android devices. The first is a Movies App which features more than six hours of episodes and nine exciting games, it allows your child to collect trophies to mark each achievement in the game. The free app includes one full episode, three games and a music video, with additional content that can be purchased.

Heroes of the City Book and Movies App for Android and Apple

The Books app is aimed at toddlers and younger children and includes twelve stories, two games and one movie trailer. The free app has one story, one game and the trailer. 

You can find the links to the Apple and Android App Stores on the Heroes of the City App Page.

As we don't have an Android or Apple tablet we haven't had the opportunity to try out the app for ourselves but we did receive a pack of Heroes of the City merchandise, including books, a DVD and toys which has been really popular over the Christmas holidays. Bud is really interested in the emergency services at the moment so he has loved the rescue vehicles and their storylines. It was a new series to us but Bud quickly learned the names of the characters and enjoyed it very much. He is torn between wanting to be a farmer and a fireman 'when he is big' at the moment so he loved the DVD.

To celebrate the release of the app I have teamed up with Heroes of the City to offer one of my lucky readers the opportunity to win a fantastic prize bundle, similar to the one we received.

Heroes of the City Prize Bundle

To enter, simply complete the Rafflecopter widget below. The blog post comment is compulsory and will unlock a variety of additional entry options. Please read the terms and conditions.

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Holiday in a home that's twICE as nICE!

14:07 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

Apparently this week is one of the busiest of the year for booking holidays. The return to work after Christmas and New Year leaves people feeling a bit dejected and in need of something to look forward to. Whether you're planning a holiday this Summer, or looking to get away next winter when booking you have a long list of decisions to make. Where will you go? How will you get there? Possibly most importantly, what kind of accommodation will you stay in?

The people at Holiday Letttings have been working on a few unusual additions to their range of available properties in the form of six 'seasonal' properties hidden on their site over the festive period, as well as a festive message (to see it type 'hohoho' in to the search box on the homepage). The properties include Santa's Grottoo, an Elves Workshop, a Manger, a Gingerbread House and, my favourite, an Igloo at the North Pole!

The igloo is advertised as a snowy yurt which sleeps up to eight people. No car is needed and the nearest car park is a week's walk away through 'picturesque' surroundings. Luxuries include a sea view (well it is situated on a glacier), free shampooo - for use in the primitive washing facilities - and air conditioning (because there isn't a door?) The garden is shared, hopefully with not too many polar bears, spotting them is one of the advertised local activities alongside fishing and hiking. I think it might be perfect location for a few days completely away from it all!

If an igloo isn't your idea of a wonderful holiday let then check out the rest of the Holiday Lettings site, I'm sure you could find something in their huge range of properties.

Brought to you in collaboration with Holiday Lettings

The End of Breastfeeding

19:06 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

For the last four and a half years I've been either pregnant or breastfeding, for five months of that time I was both but, two weeks ago, Little Miss had her final feed. It had been apparent over the month or so prior to this that she was no longer interested in feeding. She was down to one or two feeds per day and it was feeling like she was humouring me and nursing because I wanted her to, not because she wanted to or was enjoying it. It wasn't a milk strike, she was done. This revelation was hard to take for me, I was expecting to continue nursing for as long as my daughter wanted to, I just didn't expect for that to mean we stopped after fifteen months.

Little Miss at nine months
One from the archives. She's about nine months here.

I've been very lucky with breastfeeding. The first two weeks with Bud were fairly hellish, my milk didn't arrive until day six and I received very little support from the healthcare professionals I expected would want to help me to breastfeed but, as soon as my milk arrived we both took to feeding and did so without any issue until I fell pregnant with Little Miss when he was twenty months old.. I persisted for a further five months but, looking back, I can see that breastfeeding while pregnant, for me, wasn't a good decision. I was horribly ill, losing weight and breastfeeding on top of that drained me. Bud loved nursing and the decision to wean him was really hard but he was twenty-five months when we gave up and everything about my pregnancy improved immediately so, it was a good decision in the end. I've escaped all the horror stories of breastfeeding - mastitis, blocked ducts, leaking. I've been lucky.

When Little Miss arrived she fed brilliantly from the first feed. My milk arrived after four days this time, despite the traumatic aftermath of her birth. She was always a quick, efficient feeder, completely the opposite of her big brother who would nurse for hours if he could. From the instant she was mobile, as soon she had her fill of milk she was keen to get away from me and on to the next adventure, milk was something she needed to fuel that, she didn't need the snuggling cuddles after a feed. From around eight weeks she stopped feeding to sleep, it took me twenty months to get to that stage with Bud! She's always preferred to have her bedtime feed then cuddle up to Daddy for the last snuggle before bed. She slept from midnight until 8am from five weeks old too. Weaning on to solid food has been an incredibly exciting adventure for Little Miss and one that she has attacked with gusto, she LOVES food. No flavour is too much and I'm yet to see her refuse anything. Baby-led weaning was essential as her fierce independence means spoon feeding is something of a battle. She'd much rather do it herself and she'd much rather drink from a cup and eat 'proper' food than nurse.

So, my baby girl is sixteen months old today and is no longer a breastfed baby. I had put no time limit on nursing her. She will be my final baby and I really thought I would still be feeding her a year from now. I miss it. I tried so many different things to maintain her interest but she simply wasn't bothered. It's interesting that, when I stopped feeding Bud, he would constantly wriggle down into the nursing position and pull at my clothing for a few weeks afterwards. LM hasn't done that once. I'm sad that our journey has ended so soon but my fiesty little girl knows her own mind, I think she's going to be a handful when she gets older!

Despite the sadness at an ending, I'm really proud of what we've done together. Nearly three and a half years of breastfeeding in total, two happy, healthy children. I think I need to get used to having my body to myself again! It feels like our baby days are over, which doesn't mean there will be any new additions to our family, but I love the way LM is developing at the moment, she's learning so fast and is forming a strong, funny personality. I also need to work on getting Little Miss to drink cow's milk as she's refusing at the moment and she seems too little to not be drinking milk at all. If any of you have any tips for that I'd definitely be interested in hearing them.

Little Miss on Christmas Day
On Christmas Day

Project 365 2014, Days 1-4

18:12 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

Project 365 2014, Days 1-4

Wednesday #1 - A new year, and a brand new 365. I did complete last year's but lost my way towards the end and didn't end up posting the final week. Silly of me. I'm determined to keep at it this year and, being in line with everyone else will help that I think. The first photo of the year is my sleeping girl, tucked up at my mum's house where we were having dinner to celebrate the new year.

Thursday #2 - Our Lego journey has begun and we've got a storage box filled with some random Lego acquired from a charity shop, in addition to a couple of kits brought by Father Christmas. Bud can't quite manage to put two blocks together yet but is adept in identifying pieces and giving instructions, as well as developing a real love of the minifigures.

Friday #3 - Some days just need porridge. Today was a horrible, cold, damp day and a bowl of porridge, with a squirt of chocolate syrup added warmth to breakfast.

Saturday #4 - This is still LM's favourite place to sleep even though she doesn't fit quite as easily in the gap between my chin and lap anymore. She usually naps in her cot these days so this was an increasingly rare opportunity to snuggle my sleeping girl.

Linking up with The Boy and Me, as ever. Please click the badge to see the other posts or to link up yourself.

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Win Taming of the Tights by Louise Rennison

22:39 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

The Taming of the Tights is the third book in the Misadventures of Tallulah Casey series by the incredibly popular Louise Rennison. Following on from Withering Tights and A Midsummer Tight's Dream, the third book in the series sees Tallulah deciding to stay away from local wild boy Cain, and not choosing the 'safe option' Charlie instead. 
Louise Rennison is the best selling award-winning author of the phenomenally successful ‘Confessions of Georgia Nicolson’ series, which was translated into over 34 languages and went to the stage and big screen as ‘Angus, Thongs and Perfect Snogging’. She has won the Nestle Smarties Book Prize, the Michael L. Printz Honor Book and the Roald Dahl Funny prize for ‘Withering Tights’.
I wish Louise Rennison had been around when I was a teenager, her books present a refreshing account of teenage years, without being in a rush to make her heroines older than they are or bringing in anything supernatural! It's exactly the sort of book my twelve year old niece loves to read and, I can honestly say that, after reading this one I'd quite like to have a look at the earlier books too! Louise Rennison's 'Angus, Thongs and Perfect Snogging' made it to stage and big screen and I can definitely imagine this series going the same way. I'd have no problem with Little Miss reading these when she is in her early teens. It's a great, easy to read novel just perfect for the age group.

Harper Collins have supplied me with a book to give away to one of my readers. To enter simply complete the Rafflecopter widget below. The blog post comment is compulsory and will unlock various additional entries. Please read the terms and conditions.

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