Reviews

Independent and informative about products to give you a balanced resource when spending your hard earned pennies.

During the hot weather it is so important to make sure that the kids are drinking enough water and avoiding dehydration. Of course they want to go off to play and spend time in the sun but health wise we need to ensure that they are drinking enough to keep well and cool too.

If like me you also struggle to drink water I have found a few ways to help encourage the kids, and myself, to drink more water.

Invest in a water filter jug

We have the jug. You can use it as a jug but it also has the water dispenser option so the kids think it is fun helping themselves without having to lift a heavy jug! We live in a chalky water area so this helps the taste of the water too.

Grab a new water bottle.

We bought ourselves some of these leak free bottles after the kids being sent one each to review. We really love them as the liquid is measured out and they have a handy strap to hang from their scooters. They’re small enough to fit into a bag and don’t leak (nifty cap locking system that is easy for kids to use too)! We found them in TK Maxx for £3.99. You can get an adult size which is nearly double the size.

Add flavour to your water. 

A little bit of flavouring can liven up a drink and if you’re like me and love a bit of zing to your drink add a slice of lemon or lime to your drink to make it a bit tastebud friendlier! I find water a bit boring but want to limit the amount of sugar from squash so slices of fruit, mint or cucumber work well too.

Make it a game.

Who can drink the most water in a day? Every time we empty and refill a bottle tally this up and put a coin or marble in a jar. Make building this healthy habit a game and the kids will be encouraged even more!

How do you encourage your children to keep hydrated?

During the hot weather it is so important to make sure that the kids are drinking enough water and avoiding dehydration.

If you have an 8 year old daughter like me you’ve probably already heard of the brand name Smiggle. Full of bright stationery and other lovely items it really does delight Fizz when she is allowed to go in and purchase something. The shop is brilliant for kids that like to journal of all ages and so the team sent us a few bits for Jedi’s first day at school and Fizz’s entrance into year 4.

Here are our favourite things from the Smiggle site this season:

Fly Away Junior Backpack £26.50

We love this backpack and with Fizz’s obsession with all things Unicorn it really stands out. I like that it has a carry handle option as well as the back pack. It is a4 pad size so will fit her workbooks in.

Wallets £8.50

The kids will both have tuck shop money and we usually pop their bus fares in for the week (although Jedi isnt 5 until next summer so is free at the moment). Having their own wallets and teaching them to budget their own finances is really important to us so these wallets come in handy for bus ID cards, coins and a few little notes from us.

Headphones £20

If you have a child with sensory issues you know that buses home can be stressful. We have these brilliant foldaway headphones that are suitable to use with a kindle or small music device. Perfect for travelling to and from school for older kids as well when they’re working online for school homework on the schools personal website.

Of course we couldn’t go to Smiggle and get new pencil cases! Fizz loves to journal and often takes hers to school. This one is fab as it fits loads in it and is perfect for her at school and at home as it keeps everything in one place with pockets for all her pencils and pens!

We were gifted some headphones and a super pencil case for this review but all thoughts are our own!

When the Irish Fairy Door Company heard that Fizz was feeling a little down in the dumps towards the end of the school year last year they offered to send her a few things to perk her up. There was no offer to review, they just wanted to give her a smile!

They sent us a worry plaque which arrived with Evie-Bee and her fairy door! All address to Fizz rather than me to make sure the parcel was super special to her. Of course it was and Evie Bee has been a best friend since! When Fizz feels like she cannot talk to us she leaves Evie notes and we reply as her. It makes it easy to talk about worry and feelings without any pressure. In fact she was super disappointed a few weeks ago when Evie didn’t reply (she hadn’t spotted a hidden note!).

Fast forward a few months and they also sent a no more worries kit. This kit is perfect as it can travel around with us and Evie where as the original worry plaque is a bit too big for that. I love that the kit is so thoughtful with a feelings journal included which means if your child isnt able to share their anxious feelings with you they can write them down and choose when they feel they can share.

Sometime I find it hard to communicate with Fizz so things like this often open a door of communication that we are struggling with. At 8 years old there is a lot of change going on for her especially now she has two younger brothers here and there are the fights for attention and to be heard. I find that 121 time with each child is a necessity for the wellbeing of our family. Every voice needs to be heard, understood and connections built between us.

Do you struggle with talking to your child about their feelings or do they clam up when you try to talk to them?

I have been on a bit of a self care roll lately but I have noticed that the common misconception about self care is that it is all about spending a day in a spa but it is often way more than spending money and more about doing essential things that YOU need.

Self care is very individual and for me it is all about my day to say functioning. I have started having a list of non negotiable that I do everyday. Part of this for me is making sure my mind feels on track from when I wake up to at least when I collect the kids from school.

So I thought I would share my essential self care non negotiable list. This is my contract with myself and may not be for you, then again it may help you too.

Daily Lists

I write a daily list of what I need to get done and what I would like to get done. I write during the last half hour of my working day so that I don’t wake up feeling stressed out before I start the day. I use the Inspire Now Journal for this as it prompts you to pick 1 thing you must do today, while also goal setting for the day (task list), reminders and a reward. It asks you to think about your wellness and development. I like the fact it also sets up a daily morning and evening ritual – my morning is to start incorporating an online yoga course before I start work.

Reward Yourself

When I say rewards I don’t mean having to spend money, eat food or a glass of wine at the end of the day. I think about something I really want to do. At the moment it is read uninterrupted for 30 minutes. I am hoping to gradually increase the time and on some days this will be a walk along the beach, lunch with friends. I have found this is good to help me feel balanced and I am sleeping better for it too.

My other reward is if I finish all my work on time is a long hot bath with a favourite scent. I am addicted to Olverum at the moment and the smell is a really relaxant. Having a quiet bath while our home is completely silent is bliss to me. I have the travel set so I can take it with me if I go away.

Take care of your mind

Over the last year I have signed up to a life coaching diploma and off the back of that have signed up to a few other courses relating to this (including a couple more A level tuition options). It has not only helped me see where I need to work on but given me some career development too. It has made me feel more than just a mum as well as given me the confidence to explore a new career as I am heading towards 40.

Take care of your body

This is also important. As a mum I have found myself heading for a nightly glass of wine but am trying to switch that out for alternative ways to relax. Healthy eating, exercise and self care is super important for your body. Drinking water and using a good skincare routine is vital to me looking and feeling well. I am also using this fab HiGlow stick to give me a bit of summer colour – the sunshine glow makes me feel fab and perks me right up!

I don’t sit around in PJs now as that lowers my motivation and instead I’m often up before the kids setting up packed lunches, getting their clothes ready and then ensuring I am dressed and look presentable for the school run. This is important to me. I have to take care of myself and how I look, what I wear is part of this. If I stay in my PJs it isn’t shutting motivated and productive to my mind.

Talk to people

Having a supportive network is integral to my daily functioning. I work from home and this is often lonely. Gav calls or texts me during his lunch break everyday and it is great to have friends to support me from their home working too. If you are having a down day being lonely at work has such an impact so even a few seconds of adult conversation is bloody brilliant.

Let me know how you focus on your self care, what helps you?

I do love a bit of a wardrobe lift up and with Jumpsuits and playsuits making a comeback this year I was looking for something that is perfect for hiding my mum bumps but also practical for running around after the children in.

I’ve been trying out a few different designs and here is what I have found:

The structured jumpsuit – Fashion World sent me over a structured Joanna Hope jumpsuit. This came with detachable straps  so perfect if you’re worried about little hands tugging at your top. The structured top is perfect for me as I have a bigger bust so it made me feel safe. The fabric was a little heavy but I think this will be a winner on date nights. It was a classic cut and really suited my frame.

The boob tube playsuit: Rather than wear a skirt this this summer I thought that this style might suit a day time look. The jersey material is super comfy and it is easy to pull over a swimsuit if we head to the beach. It rolls small too so a perfect back up to go into a weekend away bag or beach bag.

The short playsuit: With the weather heating up and wanting to be able to run around after the kids the shorter playsuit is perfect for balmy summer days. It means that if you want to dip your feet in the sea you are totally ready too! I love the vibrant prints in the short style offerings out there. Pop a pair of leggings underneath for the cooler nights.

I do love that i have tried something new and couldn’t recommend buying a jumpsuit for the summer enough. I had thought they wouldn’t suit me before but they are so flattering and you’ll be able to find a good style for any figure type. The fact they are so practical for running about in and various adventures make them perfect for the summer months. I won’t be running around after the kids in anything else this summer! Grab a cropped denim jacket and a bright necklace for a really cool mum vibe!

 

 

I was sent two jumpsuits from the Fashion World post to review, however these words are completely my own!