Everything Else

In 2018 I Will..

I have said before and I will say it again. I suck at new year resolutions! I barely last a month when it comes to setting goals at the start of a new year. I have found however that I don’t struggle nearly as much if I do the same hopes and wishes any time other than the first of the year. For the past few years now I have been setting myself goals and hopes throughout the year instead. This year will be no different and although I have not yet started many I wanted to get them all down and share what I hope I can achieve in 2018.

 

Lose the baby weight!

In 2017 I decided enough was enough with my weight and things had to change! I had so many issues while I was pregnant with Baby S, at least one was related directly to my weight and I ended up losing over a stone during my pregnancy. However it didn’t take long for the weight to start creeping back on. In late October/ Early November of 2017 I started to take action. In the months leading to Christmas I lost 11 whole pounds!!  In all honesty I have probably gained a bit of that back now as I did take a break over Christmas. Who in their right mind can diet over Christmas?! I hope that I can continue to lose weight through diet but to also try being more active in this year than I was last year. I plan to do lots more walking as a family and getting out a bit more which should help me to be more active as a whole.

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Find time for me.

One of my favourite hobbies is to read. It takes up little time and can be optional at any point of the day. I would have been found on many occasion to have my nose deep inside a good book on the bus and any other available place I found a spare few minutes and wanted to relax. I have however noticed that since having Baby S the time I have each day for myself has become less and less. In fact over December I barely found enough time to sleep more than 2 – 3 hours per night and it had nothing to do with Baby S!

This year I will take some time each day to read, browse social media, take a long bath or maybe later in the year I could even attempt a child free cup of coffee! That may be too much to hope for but I will find some time just for myself every day.

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Move the blog!

Yes this is the year Us Two Plus You will move.I have already started working on our new home here inside the world wide web! I am really excited to be moving as I have struggled for some time now to get to grips with some things here at WordPress and I would love to be able to just have our own little domain. I have been writing in this little corner of the web for over three years now and I am excited to finally be taking action to take us to the next big step! Do keep an eye out for our big move, I will give you plenty of warning too.

Declutter and organise our home

Over the last few months I have started to let the sheer amount of items in our home spiral out of control. Babies have so many things!! That added to the very large volume we had before, birthdays, Christmas and every day items we have picked up and the house seems to be full to bursting! I have already started to go through and take some things to charity but I will be doing more and more as the next few weeks go on and I plan to continue doing it every few weeks so that we can declutter and get some of the items we just keep ‘in case we need them’ gone.

During this year Baby S will also be going in with D in their own room well I can dream that Baby S will go into D’s room with him right? We will be re decorating and will lose some valuable space in there so we need to start getting ideas for better storage too.

 

It might not be much but those are some of the plans I am making for 2018 and although we are now well into January I still wanted to share my hopes for 2018.

What do you plan or hope to happen this year?

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Project 365

Project 365 – Week 2

 

7th January

Project 365 - 07 Jan

8th January

Project 365 - 08 Jan

9th January

Project 365 - 09 Jan

10th January

Project 365 - 10 Jan

11th January

Project 365 - 11 Jan

12th January

Project 365 - 12 Jan

13th January

Project 365 - 13 Jan

This week has been much more relaxed compared to the first week of January. Much of the week has been spent at home. We’ve been starting to get back into a daily routine with school back properly now. Both D and Baby S have had a lot of fun playing both together and individually. This week seen our highchair arrive for Baby S and her first taste of Simon’s cooking, a real hit as you can see! This week also marked the first time Baby S slept through! Well kind of, she slept from around 2:30am through to 9:30am. Much of the weekend has now been spent playing and enjoying our time as a family since it has been freezing and miserable with snow forecast for next week we wanted to stay in while we could

How has your week been?

 

 

Giveaway

Colic Awareness with Infacol & Giveaway

Having had both my children I have to say that I was never concerned about Colic. I did know that colic was a condition which babies could have, coming from a family with so many siblings it wasn’t new to me. Having said that I did nothing to prepare for such a condition while I was pregnant with neither D nor Baby S. It had never occurred to me to do so! 

Today we have joined up with Infacol and Cry-sis to help raise awareness of Colic and the effects Colic can have on a family.

Infacol is the number one infant Colic remedy. Made to be suitable for babies from birth, it comes with a dropper making it easy to give to babies. While Cry-sis is the only parenting charity dedicated to supporting parents through excessive infant crying.

Colic Awareness Month Logo-7

Colic is a medical condition which can affect up to 1 in every 5 babies! Infacol have also found that only 1 in 3 Mums know what Colic is. Not only is it so common that we all are likely to know someone with a baby who has Colic but it starts during a babies first few weeks of life. A time when parents are only finding their way with a new baby.

Colic itself is not harmful for babies. The signs and symptoms of Colic include;

  • Intense bouts of crying
  • Crying in the late afternoon or evening that lasts several hours
  • The baby’s face is red and flushed when they cry
  • The baby clenches their fists, draws their knees up or arches their back while crying

As you can imagine Colic can be stressful and upsetting for the parents. Although Colic itself is not harmful for babies, the effects of sleepless nights, nursing a colicky baby on parents can be huge. Sleep deprivation is a huge problem for parents of a baby with Colic. Sleep deprivation is already known to have a huge negative impact on a persons mood and concentration. In fact Infacol’s research shows that 56% of Mums say that a lack of sleep has affected their relationship with their partner. While 38% said it had affected their relationship with their children! 

Which is why Infacol and Cry-sis joined together in September 2017 to launch Colic Awareness Month. They did so with the intent and purpose of  educating and supporting parents, in order to help ensure that every parent can benefit and experience that joys of parenthood to the fullest. 

If you would like to support Colic Awareness Month, you can donate to Cry-Sis

Infacol Sleep Suit

Infacol  have very kindly joined with us to give our readers the chance to win a White Company Sleep Suit. You can enter using the Gleam Widget below. 

Please read the Terms and Conditions before entering:

  • Entrants must be aged 18 years or over.
  • Competition is open to UK residents only.
  • Entry into this competition confirms your acceptance of these Terms and Conditions
  • The winners will be selected at random from all the correct entries received before the closing date and time.
  • All prizes must be accepted as offered. There can be no alternative awards, cash or otherwise.  
  • There will be one winner who will receive one of the product(s) featured in the above post
  • Infacol is the sponsor of this giveaway and is responsible for prize fulfillment.

 Win a White Company Sleep Suit with Infacol

Everything Else · Project 365

Project 365 – Week 1

 

1st JanuaryProject 365 - Day 1

2nd JanuaryProject 365 - Day 2

3rd JanuaryProject 365 - Day 3

4th JanuaryProject 365 - Day 4

5th JanuaryProject 365 - Day 5

6th JanuaryProject 365 - Day 6

I have long admired project 365. A link up for bloggers who will share a photo for every day of the year. I love this idea! I adore taking photos especially photos of the children. I do usually take at least one photo every single day and I have thought about joining in with project 365 for at least the past year. Now that we have reached the very start of  2018 I knew I had to start now or I never would.

It has been a pretty crazy week to start with to be honest! We of course started the week on Monday since it was the first of the year. Monday was the day to say goodbye to our Christmas Tree. I couldn’t resist one last photo before it went away for another year. I was quite surprised by just how long it stayed up this year! D was sad to see it go and the end of Christmas for another year. We took time and tidied each decoration into its box. The whole clean up process took most of the day with two little ones.

Tuesday seen our Health Visitor appointment for Baby S who is doing really well and coming along as she should. I will get a proper update up in the next two weeks. We also headed out for our weekly shop. I had forgotten just how hard it can be to do a shopping trip with both children, a trolley and a pram! Towards the end of the day I got a few spare minutes to take a few photos of Baby S and D. I love this one of Baby S in her new outfit and bow.

Wednesday wasn’t any less crazy. It was a dreary miserable outside since Storm Dylan was passing the UK. Regardless I still headed to Mums and Tots with both D and Baby S since School was still on Christmas break. Once we got home I did put off leaving again but I had to head into town with Baby S to pick up a pair of tights. (one pair!!) On the bus into town I got this lovely Photo of Baby S all cosy in her pram.

We did spend most of Thursday at home. D started back to school after Christmas. After school we took some timeout from doing all the jobs we needed to get done before Friday. D and I used this time to play another game of Funny Bunny. His current favourite! I got a few good photos but I really love this one where D is in the background doing his concentration face.

Friday was a big day for us Daddy was standing as best man for his best friend on his wedding day! We all got dressed up properly for the first time since Baby S was born. Which of course was the perfect excuse for me to take a million and one photos of D and Baby S all day long! Everyone had a lovely day and enjoyed celebrating together. I managed to get this photo of D and Baby S together. It is officially my new favourite! I just love the whole photo and I plan to get this one put on canvas for our hall.

After such a crazy week I knew that when Saturday came it would be a PJ day for us all. A nice day to sit back and relax at home without having to rush around or head out. Both D and  Baby S spent a good part of the day playing or watching movies. I decided to go with this photo of Baby S playing as it was the least blurred that I could get! Am I the only one who has children that move the second the camera shutter goes?!

I’m looking forward to sharing each week with you as we head through the year. It will be nice to look back at the end of the year and see all 365 photos together.

How has your week been?

 

 

Everything Else

All About My Year 2017

I’m not usually one to join in with the tag posts that are around. It’s probably been a few years since I did one! However I was tagged by Jen over at Chic Geek Diary and it seemed like a lovely way to recap on some of the memories and best parts of 2017 as a whole.

1. What did you do for your birthday this year? 

This year I did nothing! Well not quite I did still do the usual breast feeds, weaning (we’d not long started) and child related activities but I got to just relax, enjoy some delicious treats and copious amounts of hot coffee all day long. It was bliss! 

 

2. Whats the biggest thing to happen to you this year? 

A family of 4 for the first time -Us Two Plus You

The biggest thing to happen to me this year was giving birth to Baby S who came into the world over 3 weeks early all of her own accord and the wrong way round! To say that morning was eventful would be a major understatement! I can’t quite believe she is almost 7 months old now.
3. What was the biggest thing to happen for your child/children this year? 
butterfly kisses for Baby S and D
For both children it would have to be Baby S being born. They just adore each other so much. Baby S is very much in adoration of her big brother while D is mesmerised by every new thing Baby S learns! It is such a joy to watch them grow a relationship while they are always changing.
D Starting School
D also had his own big thing happen this year which is right up there with gaining a new life long sister. He started Primary School! It is still so hard to believe that he is now half way through his first year at school. He is doing well and I do have an update to share this month so keep an eye out if you want to find out more on how he is doing.
4. Could you pick a favourite week of the year? 
I don’t think I could pick just one! The top three would be the week Baby S gave us all a shock with her impromptu early arrival while my sister was visiting, My mum visiting for my nieces Christening and my sisters 18th Birthday and The week over the start of autumn when we spent days going out as a family and enjoyed seeing all there was at the Autumn Fair.
5. Do you have a favourite photograph of yourself from 2017? 
My favourite photo of me in 2017
My personal favourite is this one of Baby S and I. I take 99% of the photos with me in them as a selfie or ‘old fashioned selfie’ (camera facing the wrong way and blinding pressing the button in hopes for a good one!). So this one of us is a rare occurrence and I love it just a little more because it doesn’t happen very often.
6. What was your best day out? 
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In the summer we decided to walk to a park where I remember going countless times as a child with my family. It was a beautifully sunny day and the walked seemed like nothing despite the fact we walked for miles and miles! We had ice cream, a picnic, took an off the track trail through the forestry with Baby S in her pram (what where we thinking?!) got stuck in the mud more than we didn’t! It was a great day full of laughter and silly fun for us all. I loved every second!
7. What is the best film you have seen this year? 
The LEGO Batman Movie. Simply because it was the only film released this year I managed to watch. It was still pretty awesome. I had great intentions of watching many. In fact I have watched the first 15 minutes of the remake of Beauty and The Beast (I love the original!) about a million times now but something always happens and I press pause for another month. I actually think it is still in the DVD player as I type this! That will my treat tomorrow night. Movie night the minute the children go to sleep!
8. Is there anything you wish didn’t happen this year? 
I don’t think there is. It has been a pretty incredible year filled with lots of firsts. There has been the usual ups and downs with life and stress at all time highs this year but that was to be expected with a whole other person to worry about daily (and nightly!).
9. What would you like to achieve or improve for 2018? 
There are a few things which I would like to achieve but my main aim for 2018 is to find a little time each day for myself. Towards the end of 2017 I realised I rarely find time for just me. I find it hard to carve out time after D, Baby S, Simon and Housework etc. I will be sharing more about my hopes for 2018 in the next few days. Behind as per usual! Although this year I will hopefully be changing that! I will getting organised and trying my best to blog more and better myself when it comes to blogging. Feel free to share your tips with me on that one!
10. How will you be celebrating/did you celebrate New Years Eve?
I celebrated with Simon at home this New Year. It was nothing exciting, we watched a film and our usual Big Fat Quiz of the Year after D and Baby S had gone to sleep. While we enjoyed a little alcoholic drink, a rare occurrence for us. Baby S did wake up just in time to ring in her very first New Year. A lovely relaxing night together.
Happy New Year to you!

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Giveaway

Children’s meditation In My Heart {Giveaway}

childrens meditations trio HR (002)

Around the world people are trying some aspects of the Danish way of doing things. Danish Author, Gitte Winter Graugaard has given us a new way in which we can try the Danish way of parenting by releasing her book Children’s Meditations in My HeartSharing with the world her secret to getting children asleep within minutes!

In the world we live in our children are constantly bombarded with all manner of messages which can share emotions both real and those simply perceived by the child. That is without even mentioning the constant mixed messages available at the tap or click of a button online. While at home and school there are stresses that will weigh on our children’s minds. It can all add up in little amounts to impact a child’s mental well being!

Did you know that children today are currently sleeping 1 hour less per night that children did 25 years ago?

Children’s Meditations in My Heart contains 4 meditations which will help parents to teach their child just how important self esteem is as well as self love. With the understanding of self esteem and self love your child should be able to drift off into a more restoring sleep.

You can get your own copy of Children’s Meditations in My Heart by Gitte Winter Graugaard ( £14.95 for a hard copy and £4.97 for a kindle copy).

We have teamed up Room For Reflection to give two of our readers the chance to win a hard copy of Children’s Meditations in My Heart of their own! To enter you can use the Gleam entry form below. Please read the Terms and Conditions below before entering.

front cover HR (002)

Terms and Conditions

  • Entrants must be aged 18 years or over.
  • Competition is open to UK residents only.
  • Entry into this competition confirms your acceptance of these Terms and Conditions
  • The winners will be selected at random from all the correct entries received before the closing date and time.
  • All prizes must be accepted as offered. There can be no alternative awards, cash or otherwise.  
  • There will be one winner who will receive one of the product(s) featured in the above post
  • Room for Reflection is the sponsor of this giveaway and is responsible for prize fulfillment.

Win one of two copies of Children’s Meditations in My Heart by Gitte Winter Graugaard

 

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Gift Guides

Gift Ideas for Her

I’m not sure about you but I know I am hard to buy for! It doesn’t help that all the events where I am given gifts happen within a few weeks of the whole year. Over November and December I celebrate Simon and I’s anniversary, my birthday and Christmas! It’s crazy busy. It also means come December I usually have all those items I have mentioned through the year.

I thought it would be nice to share just a few ideas with you if your still on the look out for that perfect gift for the woman in your life! It isn’t too late with just one week to go to the big day!

Nelsons arnicare® Bath & Massage Balm

Nelsons Arnicare Bath and Massage Balm

One of the items I always love receiving on Christmas day is lovely bath products. Getting a bath is a real luxury especially with Baby S who can time waking up to the minute I sit in the bath! I love Nelsons arnicare® Bath & Massage Balm it is so soothing to just lay in the bath with it swirling through the water. Every time I have used it I always feel well rested and relaxed. I no longer ache or uncomfortable which I usually do. I think that fact you can use Nelsons arnicare® Bath & Massage Balm as a massage balm is great! Perfect for when you just don’t have time for a soak but could use some help with those aches. Arnica is a completely natural with healing properties and Arnica products are always a favourite of mine. A fantastic gift for those women in your life who are always on the go.

You can get your own Nelsons arnicare® Bath & Massage Balm (RRP £8)

Indigo Herbs – Pure Raw Chocolate Kit

Indigo Herbs Raw Chocolate making kit gift set

Who doesn’t love chocolate? It has got to be one of my top 5 favourite foods and at Christmas it is one of my favourite gifts. I also love to bake or make things myself which makes this Indigo Herbs Pure Raw Chocolate Kit a great gift that I would love to find under my tree. A chocolate which you can make yourself, is dairy free as well as gluten-free and it is suitable for Vegans! The kit comes in a lovely, simple gift box which contains all the ingredients you need already weighed and the instructions. They have thought of everything and even include little cases to pour your chocolate in for them to set. Opening the box is a treat for the senses with the beautiful scent of Cacao and vanilla hitting you once you open the box. Perfect for that instant joyous reaction for a chocolate lover on Christmas day!

You can get your own Indigo Herbs Pure Raw Chocolate Kit Gift Set (RRP £19.99)

Mummy Loves Organics – Essential Oil Massage Candle

I love candles and wax melts of many shapes and sizes. I always have a few scents to hand and will have a candle or melt burning at some point on most days! Mummy Loves Organics make a range of candles designed with mums, pregnant women and babies in mind. The whole range is completely organic, non toxic and they burn clean by using 100% cotton wicks. This means they are perfectly safe to light in your home around children and pets. The candles found in Mummy Loves Organics range are not just candles either. The candles have been scientifically formulated to warm the wax inside to be the perfect temperature to use on the skin. Why? Well the wax used in the candles is rather magical and once it has melted it becomes a lovely massage oil!

You can get a Mummy Loves Organics Essential Oil Massage Candle (RRP £35).

There you are! Just a few suggestions for the lucky woman in your life. I do hope you have found this guide helpful. Merry Christmas!

 

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Giveaway

Lansinoh Breastfeeding Giveaway

As a breastfeeding mother I know all too well how important finding great products that really work are. We’ve previously shared our thoughts on Lansinoh, the brand made for breastfeeding mothers. Today I have teamed up with them again and you could be in with a chance to win some of their fantastic products!

Lansinoh are a multi award winning brand who create products designed to help and support breastfeeding mothers. Founded over 30 years ago when Resheda Hagen suffered with extremely painful nipples and set out to find Lanolin, a product not available in shops. This little product was a miracle worker for her then, just as it is for breastfeeding mothers today! Since then the brand has branched out and really embraced their belief that breastfeeding mothers need not just great products, but they need help and advice to really experience the benefits of breastfeeding.

Lanolin-Tube-Box

One of the brands most popular products is Lansinoh HPA® Lanolin, in fact this pure medical grade lanolin is the UK’s number one bestselling nipple cream for mothers who are breastfeeding. No surprise considering it is completely safe to use and feed your baby while your wearing it!

Lansinoh doesn’t stop at lanolin either. The brand make their own very unique Disposable Nursing Pads with Blue Lock™ core. These nursing pads are anything but ordinary, the Blue Lock™ core allows each the Disposable Nursing Pads to absorb up to 20 x it’s own weight!

Lansinoh have thought about all aspects of breastfeeding, they do products to help you branch a path between breastfeeding and bottle or combination feeding. One of those products is their Breastmilk Storage Bags. The perfect way to store and freeze that precious breast milk once you have expressed. Lansinoh Breastmilk Storage Bags are made from food safe polyethylene which will also keep toxins out of your milk. Each bag comes with a tamper proof top which is also a label with areas for you to write information about the milk like the date and time it was expressed.

Lansinoh MBP - Copy

Lansinoh even have a whole range of Breast pumps to help you get the milk which can be stored and later given to your baby. One of those is the easy to use Lansinoh Manual Breast Pump, the perfect pump for on the go since it doesn’t require batteries or wires. this Lansinoh Manual Breast Pump has two phases which helps you to get the most amount of milk possible by using stage one ‘The letdown’ followed by stage two ‘expression’. Paired with the comfort fit breast cushion they help you to get the most amount of milk possible. The Lansinoh Manual Breast Pump is light weight, quiet and compact making it perfect for portable use.

You can get Lansinoh Lanolin 40ml (RRP £10.49), Pack of 60 Lansinoh Nursing Pads with Blue Lock feature (RRP £6.00) Pack of 50 Lansinoh Breastmilk Storage Bags (RRP £9.99) and Lansinoh Manual Breast Pump (RRP £35.00) from Boots by clicking on the links.

Giveaway

Lansinoh have very kindly offered one of our readers the chance to win all of the products featured above!

You can enter using the gleam widget below. Please read the Terms and Conditions before entering.

Terms and conditions:

  • No purchase necessary.
  • Entrants must be aged 18 years or over.
  • Competition is open to UK residents only.
  • Entry into this competition confirms your acceptance of these Terms and Conditions
  • The winners will be selected at random from all the correct entries received before the closing date and time.
  • All prizes must be accepted as offered. There can be no alternative awards, cash or otherwise.  
  • There will be one winner who will receive the product(s) featured in the above post
  • Lansinoh is the sponsor of this giveaway and is responsible for prize fulfillment.

 Lansinoh Breastfeeding bundle Giveaway

 

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