A Potty Training Journey Through 2015 with HUGGIES® Pull-Ups®

18:41 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

2015 has been the year of potty training for LM and it's been something of an adventure. We've been HUGGIES® Pull-Ups® ambassadors this year which has helped us terrifically in her potty training journey. It has been, for the most part, successful. She is definitely potty trained in the daytime but night time is still ongoing. It has been a surprising and rewarding experience with LM, far different to that with her big brother. As our time as HUGGIES® Pull-Ups® ambassadors comes to an end I thought I would look back over the past few months and share a few of the tactics that worked well for us.

 HUGGIES® Pull-Ups® ambassadors potty training journey

1. Using HUGGIES® Pull-Ups®

As ambassadors we've, obviously, used HUGGIES® Pull-Ups® as an essential part of our potty training journey. When we became ambassadors LM was very resistant to potty training and wouldn't entertain the idea of wearing knickers at all. We switched immediately to the pull up pants and straight away there was a difference in her. She loved that she could pull them up and down and could have a wee on the potty or toilet if she wanted to, but had the security of the absorbent learning liner in the Pull-Ups® in case she couldn't hold on or had an accident. Having the Disney® graphics on the pull up pants was great and LM loved choosing between Minnie and Cinderella.

Having disposable potty training pants available to use was much needed as we had Little E newly born at the time LM started potty training. I didn't want to add any further laundry into the mix so not having to deal with wet clothes from LM when she was taking those first tentative steps into potty training was perfect.

As I mentioned earlier, LM is not dry at night and isn't really showing any signs of readiness for bedtime potty training. She is wet every morning but we will continue to use the night time HUGGIES® Pull-Ups® as she's accustomed to them now and finds them comfortable and easy to wear. If she does need a wee during the night she can go to the toilet and pull her Pull Up down before going back to bed.

 HUGGIES® Pull-Ups® ambassadors potty training journey

2. Try the Toilet if the Potty is Refused

LM would not entertain the potty at home so we got a toddler seat for our toilet and she went on that instead. I found this really handy as I didn't have to train her to use the potty and then the toilet, going straight to the toilet meant we cut out that interim step. She did use our My Carry Potty when out and about if she needed to but was also happy to use public toilets if we could reach one in time.

3. Staying Calm and Relaxed

The most stressful part of parenting I have experienced so far was when I potty trained Bud. It was a long and drawn out process and I found that I was continuously stressed out about accidents and the length of time it took. On reflection, I didn't wait until he was showing any of the 8 Signs of Readiness, I decided when he would train rather than deciding together, This led to potty training taking around six months to complete and included several bouts of tears, mine as well as Bud's. With LM I waited until she was ready, yes, it would have been lovely to have had her potty trained before Little E arrived, but it was much easier when she was ready.

 HUGGIES® Pull-Ups® ambassadors potty training journey

4. Go For It

Don't be afraid to incorporate potty training into normal life. I know so many people who try to stay at home with children who are finding their feet with going to the toilet. We have had days out, shopping trips and various times away from home in LM's early days of potty training. If it's convenient it is very handy to have a portable potty ( I can wholeheartedly recommend My Carry Potty), She understood that our My Carry Potty was for if she needed it when we were out and she loved carrying her cute ladybird around. Now she's been trained for a couple of months we no longer need to take the My Carry Potty around with us but it was invaluable in the early weeks. Obviously the benefit of using HUGGIES® Pull-Ups® is that you don't have the endless wet clothing of the early days of potty training, when LM moved on to wearing underwear from the pull ups we had got past the time of frequent accidents.

It's been so helpful to work with HUGGIES® over the past months and they have helped us terrifically with advice and reassurance on LM's journey from nappies to daytime dryness. I think night time dryness is some way away for LM but I'm so happy to continue using the HUGGIES® Pull-Ups® Night Time until she starts to show that she is ready to go without them.

As our time working with HUGGIES® comes to an end, LM is about to set out on a brand new and big adventure. She starts nursery for five mornings each week from next week. It will be time for her to learn and play and spend time away from me and her little brother. Having her potty trained before starting nursery was a big hurdle to cross and I'm so pleased she is there. I'm so looking forward to seeing what my funny, strong willed, clever little girl makes of the next stage of her journey.

 HUGGIES® Pull-Ups® ambassadors potty training journey

If you're looking for help with potty training then please check out pottytraining.co,uk, it's packed with expert help and advice and you can request a free sample of HUGGIES® Pull-Ups® to try them out with your little ones. In around two years, when potty training starts again for me, with Little E, it will be my first port of call.

Christmas Shopping at The Works

13:13 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

The Works is one of those stores that we call into every time we go shopping. Bud loves browsing the books, craft kits and other items on sale and I know that their bargain prizes are pocket money or weekend treat friendly.

It's in the run up to Christmas that they really come into their own however, with a massive range of offers and items to suit even the hardest to buy for. I've often picked up books on some of my family's more obscure interests in there, as well as catering for the more mainstream 'must have' interests of my children.

The Works always have a range of offers on and their '2 for £10' one is great. Recently The Works sent me a range of products from this section to showcase how well it caters for everyone.

We received the following items:

The Works My First Toolbox Set

My First Toolbox

This is a great one for young toddlers and includes five plastic tools and a board book. It's 5+ because of the tools and I think Bud would love to find this under the Christmas tree. It's perfect for dressing up and the enclosed tools are a nice addition to the story. The handy resealable box and carry handle are great for taking it along with your child and I'm sure Bud will be adding a few of his treasures inside the box.

The Works My Fairy Musical Box

My Fairy Musical Box

This is the most perfect gift for LM who has been asking for a 'jewel box' since seeing one of Bud's friends' with one. I've looked at them in other shops and they have been much more expensive than this version which is perfect for my three year old. She will love putting all of her trinkets inside and winding up the key to play the music and make the fairy dance.

Dolly Peg Fairies and Princesses

I'm a little in love with this set. I'm allowed to make them myself, right? In reality this gift would be perfect as a birthday gift for one of Bud's classmates. It's gorgeous and allows girls to make dolly peg fairies and princesses and includes everything you might need to do so. It's beautifully presented and I think it would get any little girl excited at the sight, especially one who loves to craft.

Book and Plush Toy Sets - Muddy Paws and Thank You For Being My Friend

We actually have the Muddy Paws set already so we know what an excellent gift these make for young children. Incorporating a gorgeous plush character and a story about them into one box is a great idea and it really appeals. LM loves her Muddy Paws set and will often go and get her Muddy Paws teddy and sit and 'read' the book with him. I think we'll be passing on this new set to our little niece, while the 'Thank You For Being My Friend' set will  be perfect for Little E.

The Works Noisy Dinosaurs Book

Noisy Dinosaurs

At first glance I thought that this book might be a little young for Bud but I know that he'll be able to read it himself now so that will definitely appeal. He's just started to enjoy reading to his little Sister and baby Brother so this book will be perfect for them to share. The story incorporates 18 different sounds which will get children roaring along with the dinosaurs! It's a hard wearing, large board book and I think LM will love it just as much as Bud.

The Works website currently has over 160 items in the 2 for £10 range with items for all ages and interests. I was in there at the weekend and picked up a couple more (including an awesome more 'grown up' Dinosaurs book for Bud). Make sure you check out the additional offers in store and online too, including 3 children's books for £10, 4 for 10 on art supplies and 10 for £10 on Kids' books!

There's still time to order for pre-Christmas delivery. I guarantee that there's something for everyone! Visit The Works to find out more.

Visit the Snowkissed Bratz Photobooth and Win!

10:40 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

Calling all Bratz fan!  The Bratz Snowkissed Photo Booth is on tour around the UK and this weekend it will visit the Trafford Centre in Manchester.

Bratz Snowkissed Photo Booth Trafford Centre

Grab your bestie, your favourite accessories and strike a pose… the famous Bratz® photobooth is back by popular demand, with an all-new festive theme, and is visiting intu Trafford Centre this weekend! Visit intu Trafford Centre this Saturday, 5th December to join in the fun.

Perfect for getting in the Christmas spirit, the Snowkissed themed photo booth comes equipped with lots of winter themed Bratz props including skis, fur hats and festive accessories for added fun. It’s free and you and all of your friends will receive a copy of your picture to take home with you.

Head to Facebook.com/BratzUK and tag yourself in your picture for a chance to win great Bratz prizes including a hamper of Snowkissed goodies.

The Snowkissed Bratz dolls are the new release in a range. Whether it’s skiing or sleighing, everyone loves to play in the snow including the Bratz girls. Cloe, Yasmin and Jade come ready to hit the slopes in stylish snow gear including an apr├Ęs ski outfit. Accessories include hot cocoa mug and sticker sheets to customise their snowboards, sledges or skis. The #SnowKissed collection is perfect for kids creative side as all the girls ski equipment can be customised for that perfect snow look. 

Bratz Snowkissed dolls

To celebrate the visit of the the Snowkissed Bratz Photobooth to intu Trafford Centre this weekend I've teamed up with Bratz to give one of my readers the chance to win their own Snowkissed Bratz doll. 

To enter the giveaway simply complete the Gleam widget below. Please read the terms and conditions. Delivery before Christmas cannot be guaranteed.

Snowkissed Bratz Doll

Cosatto Spring/Summer 2016 Preview

20:27 Pippa Ainsworth 0 Comments

I've been very lucky over the past few years to have the opportunity to take an early look at everything Cosatto will have on offer for the coming season. Last Friday Little E and I went to see what our local nursery company have in store for Spring/Summer 2016. I'm not allowed to share some of the exciting news with you but I think pushchair fans will be very happy in early 2016.

Cosatto Spring Summer Preview 2016 featuring Wonder. Fly, Yo! 2, Giggle 2, To and Fro, Woop, 3Sixti, Noodle Supa, Waffle and all new patterns including Go Brightly, Go Lightly 2

So, what's new for Cosatto? First up, the wheels.

The Giggle 2 travel system is unchanged but is available in two new prints and I think we're going to be seeing both of them around a lot in the forthcoming months. Go Brightly is a bold, bright, unisex colour burst pattern which made me smile as soon as I saw it. The colour palette used is slightly more muted than on the likes of Pixelate but the print, both on the outside and liner of the seat, carrycot and infant carrier, are striking and guaranteed to brighten up the rainiest of days.

Go Lightly 2 sees the return of the bow! I loved the original Go Lightly with it's navy and white colourway and bright red bow and it was incredibly popular on the streets too. Go Lightly 2 sees an echo of it's forerunner but brought bang up to date. With the same starburst style print as seen on Go Brightly, this time in monochrome black and white and a bright pink bow, I predict that the Go Lightly 2 is going to be everywhere soon with lots of little girls travelling in pink, black and white style. The addition of polka dot detailing on the inside of the hood and outside of the carrycot offers an attractive contrast. It's so stylish and lovely for little girls.

Cosatto Giggle 2 Travel System in Go Brighly and Go Lightly 2

Secondly we have a brand new travel system - the Fly - which is available in two patterns - Fox Tales and Pixelate. The Fly is an innovative new design which really stands out with it's brightly coloured frame around the chassis. Parent facing when used with a brand new infant carrier (coming soon), the Fly offers a convenient,one handed fold and a multi-position recline. The ratchet mechanism to sit the seat back up is one that is so easy to use and something I haven't seen before. The spacious basket, extendable hood and ability to use with an infant carrier will make this a perfect pushchair for use when out and about in the car. Fox Tales is a gorgeous new print which is so on trend at the moment and really reminds me of the Scandinavian prints I love for my children's clothes. Pixelate is a very popular Cosatto print at the moment and the Fly sees this on a new set of wheels.

Cosatto Fly lightweight travel system in Fox Tales with Hold Infant Carrier

The Woop was new earlier in 2015 but the preview was a great opportunity to get up close to it. It has been met with success and award wins for it's innovative design. This three-wheeler with a seat unit which converts to carrycot and can be parent or forward facing also takes the Hold car seat. There is a new colourway for Spring/Summer 2015 which incorporates the very popular fruity Cosatto prints in a funky unisex blue and red Appleseed design. The existing three designs are still available.

Cosatto Woop travel system in Appleseed

The To & Fro was another new set of wheels for 2015 but one I've not had the chance to see 'in real life' yet. I was really surprised by the demo we saw. To & Fro allows all the capability of a travel system with the ease of use, small fold and light weight of an umbrella fold stroller. It's the only parent facing lightweight stroller which takes a car seat that I can think of (off the top of my head) and the quirky reversible design feature makes it seem like you have a new pushchair when you convert from parent to world facing. With the To & Fro Duo offering all of the flexibility of the single To & Fro but in a side by side double this would make a great option for those with a newborn and a larger toddler. 

Cosatto To and Fro and Duo Lightweight travel system

The ever popular Yo! has been updated with the launch of the Yo! 2. I loved our Yo! Pear Drop and was sad when we got rid of it a few months ago, it served us so well as LM's main stroller and it was tough enough for the rigours of the school run. That said every pushchair I've had has had niggles so I was delighted to see that those I found with my Yo! have been fixed. The brake has been changed to a one step operation and they have added a bumper bar. With an innovative new footrest and reflective rear wheels I can see the Yo! 2 being just as popular as it's predecessor. 

Cosatto Yo!2 lightweight umbrella fold stroller

We were also able to take a look at new prints for the Supa and Supa Dupa lightweight strollers; the ChaCha which also launched earlier this year, the new Shuffle tandem double and the exciting new things which are top secret for now! Check out Cosatto.com for more information on all of these.

Cosatto Lightweight Strollers Supa, Supa Dupa and ChaCha

You might have heard about Wonder which has been Cosatto's huge launch of 2015. The preview event allowed me to get my hands on it for the first time and I'm so impressed. It's a high end travel system which harks back to the carriage built prams of my baby days, with a very modern Cosatto twist of course. We got a close look at Hepburn (my favourite), Kew and Bonbon and the thought and design that has been put into the range is clear. Being able to try out Hepburn and experience the familiar, carriage-built 'bounce' was fantastic. I'm definitely a fan. 

Cosatto Wonder Travel System in Hepburn

There are no new highchair models but all three ranges see new prints added. The Waffle launched early in 2015 and two new prints are added to expand the range of designs available in this 'grow with me', foldable highchair. Pippy (a bright green apple print) and Heidi (a girly floral) are added to the existing Pitter Patter and Strudel designs. The 3Sixti range sees the addition of Hapi Apples 2 (an update to the very popular Hapi Apples highchair), Chopsticks (a fantastic sushi print) and Milkshake (a cool milk bottles design). There are a few little tweaks to the design of the 3Sixti to include  printed trays. Our old favourite - the Noodle Supa sees two new prints too - Kokeshi Smile (a cute Kawaii doll print which is up there amongst my favourite EVER Cosatto prints) and Chopsticks (the same fabulous sushi print seen on the 3Sixti).

New Cosatto highchair patterns 3Sixti Noodle Supa Waffle Chopsticks Hapi Apple 2 Kokeshi Smile

The Cosatto car seat world has a big announcement too but I'm going to put all of that news into a separate post. It will definitely be worth the wait!

I attended the event as a guest of Cosatto