Red Rose Baby is Here!

12:42 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

Red Rose Baby finally made his long awaited arrival on Tuesday, 26th May at 1:34pm. He was five days overdue and it took a long walk around Tatton Park on Monday to get things going. 

We stayed in hospital on Tuesday night and came home on Wednesday evening to become a family of five. Bud and LM are both delighted with their new little brother although they are taking a little time to adjust. 

He's utterly perfect and has completed our little family. I'll be sharing my birth story and his early days just as soon as I decide on his blog name!

Red Rose Baby: 40 Weeks Update

10:44 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

This is the post that I genuinely thought I wouldn't need to write. When I published my 38 week update two weeks ago I was fairly sure that baby's arrival was imminent. I felt ready, so did my body. I was having episodes of contractions in the evenings which made me think baby was definitely going to be making their way out but, a couple of days after this, everything stopped and here we are at one day past due date.

If I'm honest I never expected to get here. I've thought this baby would come early throughout my pregnancy. Bud was three days early and LM nine days late. With LM I was determined she would be born in September rather than on her due date of 28th August. When I had my 12 week scan with Red Rose Baby and was dated at 10+5 I was really surprised as, by my dates, I thought I was definitely 12 weeks. If that's the case then this baby is really late!

I had an appointment with my Community Midwife yesterday which went  perfectly well until she measured me. I was found to be 38cm and to have had no growth since the last time she measured me two weeks ago. This meant a trip up to the Antenatal Day Unit (ANDU) for monitoring and a scan. This, coupled with an eye appointment for Bud, meant that we spent most of yesterday at the hospital.

Monitoring was fine but the scan revealed lower fluid levels. They should be 2-8cm. Mine were 2.8cm and only one pool of fluid was measurable. To me this sounds worrying but, on returning to ANDU for review they seemed happy with my results. My next appointment is with my Community Midwife at 41 weeks, unless this very comfortable baby gets a move on before then! I phoned and spoke to my CMW today as I was getting a little worked up last night and they are happy with the levels too. I'll be monitoring baby's movements and going in if I feel any changes. The sonographer estimated Red Rose Baby's weight at nine pounds. I'm hoping it won't get much bigger, if I'm honest. It doesn't seem like this one will be my smallest baby after all!

It was nice to have a little look at baby during the scan. We got no clues about gender, not that we wanted any, and I think the profile looked rather like it's big Sister. It showed baby is back to back, which isn't a surprise as that seems to be the way that I carry my babies. I've had two back labours so far and dealt with them OK, I did read yesterday that a back to back position can lengthen your pregnancy though so I'm interested in spinning it, if I can, to help it along. Baby is still popping in and out of engagement and was at the brim of my pelvis yesterday. I know when it's head is in my pelvis because of the pressure it causes when walking so I'm going to be bouncing on my gym ball to encourage it down more.

I was so hoping that baby would arrive this week, before half term. When Sunday arrives we're going to have to start juggling childcare for a few days, which probably means that will be D-Day! I was really hoping that baby and I would be home before half term started, and Ian would be off work. I'm not really looking forward to having both children to entertain on my own next week as I'm so worn out but Bud is very ready for half term and I know the rest will do him good. Ideally this baby will arrive before Sunday but I don't think that's very likely. It seems so strange to be so impatient for the baby to arrive as I've never really felt like this before. It's difficult to not really be able to plan anything until baby arrives, especially with two older children to care for and entertain.

So, here's my 40 week bump. I have been comparing it to my 38 weeks shot and I don't think there is any increase in size so it seems like the growth measurements have been accurate.

Red Rose Baby: 40 Weeks Update

I'll be updating my Twitter and Instagram with any news of Red Rose Baby so make sure you follow me on those if you want to see the news!

Fun Down on Duplo Farm at LEGOLAND Discovery Centre Manchester

11:44 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

We're so pleased to be ambassadors for LEGOLAND Discovery Centre Manchester this year. It's fantastic to have annual passes which mean that we can pop in whenever we like. Bud loves it there but LM can sometimes get a little frustrated that she's too small for some of the attractions. She isn't keen on watching her Brother have all of the fun! That's all set to change though, as LEGOLAND has reinvented their Duplo area to make it more interesting and engaging for their youngest guests. We went along yesterday to see the changes as the brand new Duplo Farm area opened to guests.

Fun Down on Duplo Farm at LEGOLAND Discovery Centre Manchester

Win a Pair of Tickets to the Ideal Home Show Manchester

15:15 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

The Ideal Home Show returns to Manchester's EventCity this June and I have teamed up with the show to offer a pair of tickets to one of my lucky readers. Following on from the success of the Ideal Home Show at Christmas which I had the pleasure of attending last year, and last year's first Summer show, it returns next month with a bang!

Now lasting for four days the show will feature seven areas dedicated to making a house a home, including: Interiors, Home Improvements, Food & Housewares, Technology, Gardens, Fashion & Beauty and Shopping.

With over 300 exhibitors the show offers a great day out and a unique shopping experience for the whole family, packed with fantastic features including a fully built Show Home, inspirational Room Sets, top chefs at the Food & Drink Theatre, the relaxing Restaurant and Champagne Bar, as well as the spectacular Ideal Super Theatre, filled with talks and demonstrations.

The show will feature a fantastic range of guest speakers, including Laurence Llewellyn-Bowen, George Clark, Gregg Wallace, Amanda Lamb, Martyn Lewis and Diarmuid Gavin, who will offer advice and tips throughout the show.

Win a Pair of Tickets to the Ideal Home Show Manchester

From Interiors to Home Improvements, Food & Housewares to Technology, Gardens, Fashion & Beauty and Shopping, the Ideal Home Show sponsored by Express-Bi-folding Doors also gives you the chance to explore thousands items you won’t find on the high street.

For more information, and to book tickets please visit

I've teamed up with the Ideal Home Show to give away a pair of tickets, valid for any day of the show. To enter please complete the Gleam widget below. The blog post comment is compulsory and must answer the question. Answering it will unlock a range of additional entry options. Please read the terms and conditions.

Pair of Tickets to the Ideal Home Show Manchester

Competitions at ThePrizeFinder

Funky Bibs from Funky Giraffe - Review and Giveaway

13:10 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

By the time Bud was around 12 weeks old he had started to drool, and drool he did for around the next two years. There's nothing worse than a baby with a constantly wet chin and chest so we needed a solution to keep him comfortable and protect his clothes. I discovered bandana bibs quite quickly at this point and Bud soon amassed a good collection. The funky prints, comfortable fleece backing and range of colours from Funky Giraffe were always one of my 'go to' choices when buying them for Bud so I was pleased to be asked if we would like some to be sent over for Red Rose Baby recently.

Obviously baby hasn't arrived yet but we've been sent a gorgeous pack of ten bibs which will be a fab addition to the teething wardrobe of baby number three. We've been sent a set of ten bibs which are from the girlier side of the range but, even if Red Rose Baby is male we should be able to make use of some of them. Ours is Set 2 and it is a lovely mix of plain pastel shades with brighter character bibs and some really funky prints - I love the daisies and the butterflies.

Funky Bibs from Funky Giraffe - Review and Giveaway Daisies Bandana

When I've used the Funky Giraffe bibs previously I've always found them easy to use and to wash really well. The fleece backing is beautifully soft and does a really good job of keeping moisture away from skin and clothing. Exactly what you need if your baby is drool-y. LM hardly dribbled at all but we still used bandana bibs from time to time, simply as an accessory as the right one can really 'make' an outfit.

Funky Bibs from Funky Giraffe - Review and Giveaway Bandanas

A set of ten Bandana bibs is available at just £20 from Funky Giraffe, which I think is great value for money! There's also free delivery if your order is £7 or more so it's a great way to add to your baby's collection of bandana bibs. For special occasions they have a gorgeous range of satin bibs and they can even personalise them for you. With scratch mitts, hats, socks, burp cloths and large bibs also available Funky Giraffe is a 'one-stop shop' for all your baby accessories.

To place an order check out, or one of their international sites in France, Australia, Spain or Italy.

I've teamed up with Funky Giraffe to offer one of my readers the chance to win a set of ten bibs for the lucky little one in their life. To enter please complete the Gleam widget below. The blog post comment is compulsory and must answer the question. This will unlock a range of additional entries. Please read the terms and conditions.

Funky Giraffe Bibs

More competitions at ThePrizeFinder 

Disclosure: We received the bibs for review purposes.

Geronimo Festival - One Week to Go

12:16 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

It's just a week to go until the Geronimon Festival lands at Tatton Park and the excitement is mounting!  The festival is still making some exciting announcements about what is to come and it's not too late to get tickets, read on to find out more!

Geronimo Festival - One Week to Go

Our friends at LEGOLAND Discovery Centre and SeaLIFE Manchester will be bringing building workshops, and their very own Touch Pool where visitors can meet , and touch, sea creatures!

The Circus Zone will see regular shows taking place throughout the day, with gravity defying trapeze artists and hilarious clowns. There are also circus skills workshops, if your children want to try the skills for themselves. There will also be classic Punch and Judy shows to entertain the whole family.

Geronimo Festival - One Week to GoGeronimo Festival - One Week to Go

There's a chance to get creative in the Funky Junk Zone. Bud loves a bit of junk modelling so he'll be keen to visit here I think. There's also cooking workshops and buggy makeovers, if you're feeling creative in other ways.

PIG is an ever popular, eye-catching installation and show, featuring a nine metre long sleeping sow in a pen. Geronimites can see her snuffling, opening and closing her eyes, and hear her snoring. A farm-hand invites ten people at a time into the pen to take a peek at a 10-minute long, unexpected piece of theatre inside her belly. PIG is an outdoor theatre event suitable for all ages. Performances will be running approximately every 15-minutes, for 2-hours twice a day, throughout the festival.

Have you ever wondered why our seasons change? Do you know how to say hello in Japanese? Jump up and join Luke & Emma on their pop, pre-school adventure. ‘A Song a Day LIVE!’ is an action-packed, educational, musical journey and all Geronimites are invited along for the ride! The up-beat, lively production uses music, audience participation and buckets of fun to educate you and your little ones about the world we live in. Luke and Emma will be performing two live shows a day (Sat and Sun only).

With the main stage featuring so many cBeebies favourites, including Hook and Line from Swashbuckle, Alex Winters, Katy Ashworth and Mr Bloom it really sounds like Geronimo Festival is not to be missed It just might be the perfect family fun day out!

Geronimo Festival - One Week to Go

Geronimo is aimed at families with children under the age of 12.  Geronimo tickets are on sale priced £22.50pp, with family passes priced at £86 (children under the age of two go free). Tickets on the day are £25pp.

For tickets and more information visit or follow on Facebook and Twitter.

North West Half Term Family Fun

21:23 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

With half term around the corner and two weeks to fill for many of the local schools I thought I'd bring together a few of the fantastic events on over the holiday period, just in case you are looking for inspiration.


Family festivals are on the rise all over the country and we have a brand new one on our doorstep. Wild Rumpus' The Lost Carnival takes place in Burrs Country Park, Bury on the evenings of 22-25th May. It's open from 4-9pm and families are admitted in timed slots. The carnival tells the story of a once great carnival which stopped touring in it's heyday, for reasons unknown. It is returning and families attending are needed to fend off danger and return the carnival to former glories. Visitors can expect circus, music, spellbinding theatre and visual trickery. It sounds like a really magical night's entertainment. Tickets are priced at £10 for adults and children (under 3s go free but still require a ticket).

The Lost Carnival Wild Rumpus Bury


The week after Half Term sees The Tiger Who Came to Tea arrive at The Epstein Theatre, Liverpool. The Olivier nominated show brings the much loved children's classic to the stage in a stunning adaptation of the classic book from David Wood OBE, one of the foremost children's theatre writers and directors around today. Performances run from Tuesday 9th - Saturday 14th June. It's one of Bud and LM's favourite books and we're really looking forward to seeing it. Tickets are priced at £12 each, visit The Epstein website to book.

The Tiger Who Came to Tea Liverpool Epstein Theatre


One of our favourite places to visit as a family is Manchester' MOSI (Museum of Science and Industry) and half term sees a nine day musical extravaganza on the way! #HookedonMusic - The Citizen Science Experiment will see the museum's visitors invited to show their moves on a dancefloor in the heart of the museum with a daily silent disco. The aim is to have fun while taking part in a science experiment as researchers will film the discos and record individuals' responses to the three different tracks on offer to dance to.

In addition to the silent disco there will also be a #HookedonMusic quiz with prizes to be won, and the Jungle Disco which is aimed at getting the under fives dancing. For more information, listings and times check out Admission is free.


LEGOLAND Discovery Centre is on the lookout for a Creative Crew this half term. The competition will see the budding builders pushed to their LEGO® limits, facing new challenges along the way and presenting their creations to Master Model Builder Alex Bidolak.

A total of twelve children aged 5 to 12 will be inducted into the Creative Crew following a series of challenges. Beyond just their LEGO®build skills and techniques, the Creative Crew will be called upon to be the first to test out and review new rides, tell the world about cool new LEGO® products and teach others how to design amazing builds.

Once selected, the Creative Crew will each gain a family pass for four to the attraction for a year, they’ll attend monthly creative design and build sessions with our Master Model Builder plus one lucky winner will receive a family trip to LEGOLAND Florida!

The competition runs from 2–22 May. Entrants are invited to bring their creations to the centre to be judged and put through their paces.

Entrants can also enter daily competitions on social media to win tickets to the attraction by visiting their Facebook page and Twitter

LEGOLAND Discovery Centre Creative Crew Competition


What are your plans for half term? I'd love to hear them!

Binky Bear Goes to London

14:39 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

Bud and LM love books and are always happy to see a new character. Recently we were approached by the creators of Binky Bear who sent us his brand new book 'Binky Goes to London'.

We were sent a gift set which included the new book and our very own Binky Bear. all packaged up in a very smart red polka dot gift bag. LM took one look at the Binky Bear teddy and claimed him as her own. He's a lovely little fellow, about twelve inches tall and smartly dressed in his waistcoat and neckerchief. LM has recently started to enjoy choosing books to look at on her own and she loves getting Binky, finding his book and looking through it on her own.

Binky Bear Goes to London

Binky Goes to London tells the tale of a shopping trip to the capital. Binky gets a little bored and decides to wander off to see the Queen. He meets some new friends along the way and showcases both the wildlife and working animals of the capital city. We won't spoil the end for you but Binky gets very close to the palace and meets some of it's special residents!

Binky Bear Goes to London

My children have loved meeting Binky Bear. Both Bud and LM have enjoyed the story and LM loves her new teddy. I think this would be a great book to take on a trip to London. As it's illustrated using photographs your child could follow in Binky's footsteps and follow him along on his walk, there's even a map inside the cover to make it easier for you. I think my two would love that.

Binky Bear Goes to London

From a parents' point of view the books are lovely quality, with engaging, rhyming stories which are really lovely to share with my chidren. The hardback book feels lovely to hold and the full colour photographs are great to look at and discuss with them. This book is Binky's third adventure - the first two see him visit rural Hampshire and Winchester - we'd quite like Binky to come up North next please? The gift set is avaiable to order from Binky's website priced at £22. It would make a great gift for a child on a trip to London or at any other time.

If you'd like to find out more about Binky Bear and his books then check out his website - or follow him on Twitter (he actually tweets!) @AllAboutBinky or visit his Facebook page.

Disclosure: We received the Binky Bear gift set for review purposes.

Red Rose Baby - 38 Weeks Update

21:06 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

As I write I'm 38 weeks pregnant and the end is firmly in sight. With less than two weeks to go until my Estimated Due Date, a date I've always felt was rather generous and later than I think I'm due, I feel like it could be any time!

The two weeks since my previous update have passed quietly. My SPD has returned with a vengeance and, to be honest, just walking the school run has been a massive exertion. I was so pleased that Bud had only three days in school this week, and on one evening went to a friend's for tea. Only having the afternoon school run twice was bliss.

LM's behaviour has been a little challenging this week, I'm not sure if that's because she senses the impending change for us all or for some other reason but parenting her has been difficult this week. She had the most epic temper tantrum on Friday because I wanted her to wear a puddle suit. Apparently that didn't match her sartorial standards and, let's just say, we were almost late for school and leave it at that!

I saw the midwife again on Thursday and, beyond a little protein (nothing serious) she was happy with our progress. Baby is very firmly head down and deep in my pelvis. I knew this from how awkward walking is! I'm booked in again for my due date but we both think that I may not need that appointment. I'll be very surprised to still be pregnant then I think.

I think we're all set for baby's arrival now. Our SnuzPod has arrived and Ian will be building it in the next couple of days. I can't wait to use it with Red Rose Baby, I really feel that it will make those night feeds easier and I'll be sure to tell you how we're getting on with it.

The nicest thing to have happened recently is the lovely surprise Baby Shower that some of my best blogging friends threw for me yesterday. Karen from That Lancashire Lass, Jen from My Mummy's Pennies, Jenny from The Brick Castle and Sim from Sim's Life teamed up to give me a lovely little party at Karen's house and it was so nice to have time to sit and chat with them before baby arrives. Red Rose Baby and I were really spoiled with some lovely gifts too. Sim made an epic Red Velvet cake, and we played Baby Bingo. I also have all of their predictions for baby's date of arrival, weight and sex. We will see who is closest!

Red Rose Baby - 38 Weeks Update Baby Shower

This might be my final Bump Shot on the blog. My bump is still really round and I've had the 'basketball' comment a few times. The pictures above show me front on, I've been trying to get a decent one for a while. I still feel smaller than I did with Bud and LM and I'll be interested to see what this baby weighs. I'm still measuring spot on for dates and, while this isn't the most exact science, I was measuring big with both LM and Bud at the end of my pregnancies with them. Despite the discomfort of SPD, this baby definitely feels smaller.

Red Rose Baby - 38 Weeks Update

If you've enjoyed my posts about Red Rose Baby's pregnancy so far then I'd love it if you would consider nominating me in the MADs Blog Awards for Best Pregnancy Blog, please click on the badge below to go through to the nominations form.

Tots100 MAD Blog Awards

100 Family Adventures by The Meek Family

22:12 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

As a family we love to spend time together, whether outside exploring the countryside or finding a new museum to discover, we try to get out and about on an adventure as often as we can.

Recently we were sent a copy of 100 Family Adventures by Tim, Kerry, Amy and Ella Meek, a fantastic new book which aims to give families lots of ideas for ways to spend time together.

100 Family Adventures by The Meek Family - Review and Giveaway

Produced in full colour, and jam packed with ideas, 100 Family Adventures is a great read. It's divided into section based on the location for each activity (for example woodland, by the sea, hills and mountain) which makes it easy to dip in and out of depending on where your travels will take you. Each section then suggests various projects under each heading. For every suggested activity you get a full description of what it entails, including any safety considerations, suggested locations and then input from the Meek children with a joke from Ella and suggestions for additional activities from Amy. Every project is illustrated with beautiful photography from the Meek family archive so you know that the family have tested it out themselves.

There are so many great suggestions in the book and, while some of them aren't suitable for young children many are and it's definitely the type of book I'll be keeping up on the shelf for the next time we need inspiration for a day out. My partner is an Explorer Scout leader (teenagers from 14-18) and he's been dipping into it for suggestions for their activities too. There's definitely no upper age limit on enjoying this book. I think that the only way it could be improved might be a small notes box on each page to record your thoughts if you and your family complete the activity. The Close to Home section is especially good for families with young children and Bud and LM have already enjoyed exploring their local area by scooter, using public transport and exploring local history.

100 Family Adventures is published by Frances Lincoln and is currently available with an RRP of £14:99, excellent value for a book that has the potential to inspire a huge range of family adventures. It is available from all usual stockists including Amazon. You can keep up to date with the Meek Family adventures on their website - Do Try This At Home.

Disclosure: We received the book for review purposes

Heroes of the City YouTube Channel Giveaway

16:56 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

Bud has been a fan of Heroes of the City for some time now and the adventures of Pauli Police Car, Fiona Fire Engine and their friends are always popular in our house. One of his favourite ways to keep up with their adventures is by watching the Heroes of the City YouTube Channel.

It can be tricky to track down appropriate channels for little ones to watch on their own and we've found the Heroes of the City channel great for Bud to practice navigating around and choosing what to watch himself. The channel is really well organised and you can find playlists featuring each series' episodes, music videos and even crafts.

A recent addition to the channel has been a playlist featuring a series of films suitable for toddlers. Bud has loved sharing these with his little sister. They take the form of introductions to the various characters and are great for younger children.

One of Bud's favourite playlists is the Sketch & Guess videos with Calamity Crow. He loves trying to guess what is being drawn before Calamity Crow can.

It's refreshing to see that there are Heroes of the City channels for a wide range of European languages, you can subscribe in any of them!

I've teamed up with Heroes of the City to offer one of my readers the chance to win a goodie bag of merchandise for the show (includes a t-shirt, DVD and die-cast vehicle). Please enter using the Gleam widget below, the blog post comment is compulsory and will unlock a range of additional entries 

Heroes of the City YouTube Channel Giveaway

Heroes of the City Goodie Bag

Wildlife Jack - Series One on DVD

15:41 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

Bud loves animals, from his first words onwards they have been an abiding interest for him and he loves anything that will help him to learn more and improve his knowledge of his favourite furry and feathered friends. We actively seek out television series and books to further his interest but it can be tricky to find appropriate TV for young children, especially if you want to see 'live action' and a show featuring animals of the UK.

Wildlife Jack - Series One on DVD

When we were offered the chance to take a look at a brand new DVD named 'Wildlife Jack' I was very intrigued. It's a show that airs on Disney Junior in the UK and we haven't heard of it before. The DVD would be an introduction to the series for Bud and LM.

For those similarly new to the show, Wildlife Jack is a great new series which is filmed in the UK and features animals that are native to the British Isles. Wildlife Jack is an animated (he's a cartoon) six year old boy who reads his Grandfather's animal book and is transported into the world of animals alongside documentary-style footage of the creatures he is encountering. The well know wildlife presenter Chris Packham voices Jack's Grandfather.

The DVD features five seven minute long episodes of Wildlife Jack, as follows:
Episode 1: I Want To Fly - Jack sees a blackbird chick fly for the first time and tries to learn to fly from birds too.
Episode 2: Hide & Seek - There's a hungry otter around and Jack discovers some ingenious ways the river animals stay safe.
Episode 3: Hungry Like A Fox - Hungry Jack tries to keep up with a hunting fox, but finding food is not easy.
Episode 4: Sand & Sea - Jack joins a herd of seals and then meets all kinds of scary and enchanting underwater creatures.
Episode 5: Making Friends - Jack tries to join a herd of deer, but quickly learns that only one deer is allowed to be in charge.

Wildlife Jack - Series One on DVD

We've really enjoyed Wildlife Jack on DVD. It's been educational for both Bud and LM. Bud has enjoyed furthering his knowledge of animals and watching Jack's adventures. LM has loved learning a few new animal names and the footage of all of the different creatures. From a parent's point of view I think that a series featuring the animals of the UK is a refreshing change, often I think that Bud knows more about creatures that he only has a chance of seeing in the zoo than in the wild. In fact he's asked lots more questions about the animals featured in this DVD after having watched it a couple of times.

We'd really recommend Wildlife Jack for children aged up to six or seven, possibly older if they are interested in animals. It's an innovative, fun, educational series and my children have really enjoyed the DVD.

Wildlife Jack Series One is available on DVD priced at around £7:49. To find out more about the show, or to order the DVD please visit the Wildlife Jack website. There is also a Wildlife Jack book available from Amazon, and downloads from Google Play and iTunes.

Disclosure:  We received the DVD for review purposes.