The Naked Truth about Having a Baby

So last month I had the pleasure of attending my first ever book launch. Amazing to say the least and sum up every aspect about it.

Author, mother of 3 and wife Jernine R wrote an amazing book called ‘The Naked Truth about Having a baby’. The title alone spoke to me as it really hit home as a first time mother. Usually truths relating to motherhood are rarely spoke about or seen as a taboo, however on this occasion all those taboos came to light in her well penned account of her experiences of motherhood. 

The book is split into different sections which allow the reader to follow the journey of the different stages of motherhood. During the book launch the author split it into different stages leading with conception, pregnancy, labour and lastly birth. Each mother shared their honest, open and truthful account of a particular stage. All these stages are the process leading up to motherhood and each mothers experience during these stages shape their motherhood journey.

Conception

At the book launch a woman (Kimberly Kane) spoke about her process of going through ivf treatment to conceive a child, she spoke about the ups and downs of the process and the physical and emotional effect it has. In the book conception isn’t spoke about exclusively. As it appears to be a more personal account and the author talks about not knowing she was pregnant which is very common in a lot of pregnancies.

Pregnancy 

At the book launch a mother (Gemma Samuel’s) of 2 soon to be 3 spoke about her experience of her pregnancy journey, giving birth to her still born baby then a few months later falling pregnant then being blessed with a beautiful, healthy baby girl. She spoke about both pregnancies and how the experiences changed her. In the book Jernine gives an open and raw account of her pregnancy. She opens up about the negative feelings she felt and having to come to terms with her bodily changes. During pregnancy a lot of mothers have negative feelings and go through a tornado of emotions finding it difficult to express this. So it was a breath of fresh air to read her honest account and be able to identify with her emotional rollercoaster.

Labour

In the book the chapter on labour opens with a description of the word labour which is a perfect explanation of the experience. I loved the fact that the author highlights all labour experiences as being different even if it’s by the same person. At the book launch a mother (Shirina Carstens) speaks about how much of an easy and smooth labour she had but the after effects were nothing short of a nightmare. However she managed to over come all those post labour complications and they have had a positive impact on her future and making her the woman and mother she is today.

Birth

The book does not exclusively talk about birth but talks about the lead up to birth and the preparation that’s needed. I love how it gives practical and informed advice about how to prepare for the arrival of your baby. It then goes on to discuss about the post birth necessities.

  • Bringing the baby home
  • Sleep
  • Breastfeeding 

But to name a few of the aspects the author gives detailed, raw and authentic accounts about. She opens the reader up into her world of motherhood and strips back all the layers that are usually covered with modesty. She not only gives her personal account but she also gives advice which is reader will take away with them.

She reigns 

The book launch was like no other event I have ever been to. A beautiful spoken word by a soon too be first time father (Rommell Wallace) about the power of the women. Amazing vocals in the form of singer song writer (Kenza Blanka). Lots of sweet treats which are always a win for my sweet tooth and super yummy personalised cupcakes by @mummabaker__. The night was hosted by amazing founder @mummy.matters and the interviews were panelled by Pastor @jnrspence.

It was an amazing night and I was honoured to be able to attend such a well put together event. Not to mention my new addiction to the authors writing. Usually I’m the queen of summarising however on this occasion there isn’t enough positive adjectives to describe how well versed the book is. It is definitely a must read for all parents to be as well as experienced mothers and fathers (yes dads and dads to be you will gain a whole new insight. The book launch was an event not to be missed and if you did miss it you are in luck as the author will be doing a book signing November 30th. Tickets can be purchased here. If you like me love a good read and want to find out more checkout the site:  http://www.she-reigns.com/ 

– Mrs B

Mummy and Me- Bourn Beautiful Natural

As a black mother with a daughter one thing I always wanted was for her to embrace and love every single thing about herself. One of those things being everything natural about herself and it started from her crown (her hair). 

I have done a few blog posts about Taliyahs hair regime which I got amazing feed back from. So I was super excited when I got sent amazing natural hair products from Bourn Beautiful Naturals

Not a lot of people know that I made the conscious decision to wear my hair out natural since having Taliyah. Although weaves and wigs are great for protective styling I wanted my daughter to look at me and say oh my hair is amazing like mummy’s. Also a little disclaimer I am NOT a natural hair expert, I’m just someone that if I’m passionate about something I will research a lot about it.

Bourn Beautiful Naturals is a UK black owned business and makes hand-crafted products in Britain for naturally kinky-curly hair. Their products are free from sulfates, parabens, mineral oil, petroleum, TEA and DEA. What I love most about the products is that they are vegan and vegetarian friendly yet still have that luxurious feel.

Product breakdown

Moisture Silk Sulfate-Free Shampoo: Our favourite day of the week- wash day! Now what I loved most about this shampoo was how rich and creamy a lather it was and as it was safe for both Taliyah and myself to use. Usually I have to be super careful because babies move about a lot but she was happy to sit around and I didn’t have to worry if it would be too strong or foam too much so that it drips.

It left both our curls still defined and bouncy without any additional product. As you can see we have similar but different curl patterns and the shampoo still did an amazing job.

Avocado Smoothie Conditioner: When I tell you this had me feeling like a goddess after and it smelt so good.It literally does exactly what it says it does, I applied to my hair left on for 30 minutes then rinsed. The hempseed oil acted as a protective barrier and really helped with my severe itchy scalp. Taliyah didn’t use this as it’s a little stronger for her tender scalp.

Knot-free Detangling Moisturiser: One of the biggest essentials for curly and kinky hair is moisture so having a good detangler starts any hair day the right way. This has become our go to product when wearing our hair out or even before I began styling Taliyahs hair it keeps our strands supple and I love how nourished both our curls feel with the coconut-infused light mist spray.

Curl, Please! Curling Custard: Now for every natualista out there I am sure we can all agree that a curling custard or curling cream is our everything. It helps moisturises curls and kinks keeping them in place. It contains coconut milk, aloe vera, mango butter, hempseed oil and goji berry extracts. The perfect natural ingredients to have does curls pop and shine.Now as Taliyah is still quite young I don’t do braid outs or twist outs just yet so I apply the curling custard and she will either wear her hair out in a beautiful Afro or I would do a protect style and braid it.Now this curling custard was nothing short of perfection as it wasn’t too sticky so her cainrows were still fresh and smooth and had that extra shine. For myself I live for a braid out as it helps stretch my hair overnight. This curling custard was the perfect product because after a good nights sleep my hair still looked nourishedI was able to put my hair all in one in a neat bun and my curls were popping and my edges were smooth.

Leave me be Leave-in Conditioner (silicone & glycerine-free): I really loved this leave in conditioner as it worked well with the curling custard and was lightweight so it didn’t weigh down our tresses and smoothed our hair from the cuticle right to the tip. 

Coconut Cream Deep Conditioner: One of the most important parts of hair care is conditioning and I love a good hair masque.This is packed with pure coconut milk, rich in vitamins c, b1, b3, b5 but to name a few. It also contains shea butter which is my all time favourite natural product for skin, hair my whole life really.

I don’t deep condition Taliyahs hair too often as it’s harder because you don’t want her to catch a cold from sitting around with product. With my own hair I deep condition every two weeks, as it always helps nourish my hair. I’ve used this twice on myself and found that it always left my hair feeling salon fresh. I noticed that when I did put product in my hair after the product would work better for my hair.

Hair too balm: I’m always looking for product to grease Taliyahs scalp as it gets dry so easily and rely on a mixture of shea butter and coconut oil. But guess what this balm has both and added avocado oil and hempseed oil. Using this daily whilst her hair was in braided styles I noticed that her scalp wasn’t as dry and once I took her braided styles out her hair wasn’t dry and the roots.

Overall view

  • Sizing: the sizing of the products are amazing ranging from 50ml up to 500ml. There are 3 size options for each product so it meets everyone’s needs
  • Price: pricing is really affordable starting from £3.50 for the smallest size to £22 for the largest size product
  • Usage: I found the products easy to use as they had step by step guidance on how best to use them on each bottle/tub/tube.

Now I was definitely not an expert before becoming a mum but since I’ve researched so much about haircare. I am extremely happy with the Bourn Beautiful Natural range and would definitely recommend for all natural hair wearers. The range makes a perfect combination and was able to work well for my 3c hair type and my daughters 4a hair type. 

Our friends over at Bourn Beautiful Natural have given as a discount code (SMILES15) to share with all our readers that give you 15% off any product on their website. To get all the latest updates on the brand follow them on instagram: @bbnaturalsuk twitter: @bbnaturalsuk

– Mrs B

Tea-time with Jungle Friends 

Now as Taliyah is basically a toddler when it comes to play time a little bit of educating is crucial. We are currently learning about various animals, our trip to the farm kicked it off and now we have some amazing animal soft toys too.

We got a nice selection from a company called Gund. Gund is America’s most prestigious soft toy company and this summer they have launched an exclusive range of plush baby toys and activity sets.

The new ‘Jungle-friends’ range come in a selection of various toy types:

  • The giraffe rattle
  • The giraffe cuddly toy
  • The giraffe wind up toy
  • The Jungle Friends bowling set

These are amazing as they have a variety of well loved jungle-friends (no pun intended) options for children and they are just super cute. With lions, giraffes, hippos, monkeys and elephants all part of the line-up, babies and young children are bound to have hours of endless fun letting their imaginations quite literally run wild while developing their motor skills through sensory play.

First impression

So my first impression as a parent was thank goodness I don’t need to buy lots of batteries for this selection of toys. A lot of children’s toys these days are electric and require batteries or a whole tool kit to install.

Taliyahs first impression was very different to her usual reactions. Normally she’s throwing the toy before it’s out of the wrapping but this time she was a lot more gentle and apprenhensive to dive right in.

Features

  • The giraffe cuddly toy

This is one of Taliyahs favourites of the bunch as she loves giving cuddles from time to time. So this was a perfect size, super soft and it was light weight. Sometimes she would run up and give the teddy to me to cuddle and of course I had to give her a huge cuddle. This toy is perfect for newborns right up young children (even the older ones that don’t think they are too grown for a cheeky cuddle). Taliyah also loved bringing her giraffe teddy to her tea parties. This cuddly giraffe is made from special heathered fabric, suitable from birth and hand washable.This toy retails at: £18

  • The giraffe rattle

Of the selection I would say we got least play out of this because Taliyah was a bit too grown for the rattle (she thinks she’s a big ol teenager I’m sure). However I realised that when you are out and about i hooked it onto the pram and Taliyah could give it a good ol shake. This toy is perfect for younger babies as the nose soothes them as well as draws to their attention using their eye and hearing coordination. The size is also perfect for tiny little hands, it is suitable from birth, machine washable and CE marked.This toy retails: £6.95

  • The giraffe wind up toy

Taliyah is at the age where logical thinking is something she is very interested in. Opening and closing boxes, screwing and unscrewing lids and squeezing tubes. So this wind up toy was perfect for her. It was just as soft and the same size as the teddy but you could wind it up and it plays music. Taliyahs two favourite things; music (as she loves dancing), then twisting things. She loved winding it up and that was great for her motor skills. Also she would give her dad one giraffe and hold the other (wonder how long sharing lasts). This toy is surface washable, suitable from birth and CE marked.This toy retails at: £27

  • The jungle friends bowling set

This was a household favourite! It came with 5 different easily identifiable animal characters so it’s great for parents/guardians to teach about animals, they are a great size for babies and young children to hold, have a sturdy base so pins stand well and it included a ball that would be used to knock down the pins.

What we as a family loved most about this set was that firstly it came in a nice storage bag which is always needed when it comes to toys. Easy to show your little one all about tidy up time, or perfect to travel without getting dirty.

We loved creating other games with this set; her dads favourite was football (I dreaded it at first but then remembered the ball was so soft and ended up getting involved. We love that this a toy grows with the child and can create endless hours of gaming and learning fun. It is suitable from birth, machine washable and CE marked.This toy set retails at: £35

Overall view 

The jungle friends set have been a huge hit in our household from me and hubby bringing out our inner child playing football with the ball that comes with the bowling set, to Taliyah learning how to test gravity by throwing and rolling the ball. 

The colours of these products are amazing as they are gender neutral, and will go match any room decor. They are super soft so no worrying about bumps and bruises on your teeny new horns to your exploring toddlers. The price points are reasonable also for such luxury material and love that they are easy to wash so naughty germs won’t cling onto our jungle friends.

Lastly the selection and choices of characters really appeal to babies and young children. It creates a more friendly reaction to these animals and it helps them learn all about them. Our next animal encounter will be to zoo and we will definitely be taking a few of our jungle friends with us

All of these amazing toys can be purchased online via the Gund site. I will be also running a giveaway on my social media platform very soon so stay tuned..

– Mrs B

Bath time Bunny 

With the long Easter weekend drawing close to an end there would be nothing more relevant than a product review that fit the vibe.

This comes in form of the hooded bath towel by Minene UK, what makes it Easter ready is the cute little bunny ears on the hooded towel.

First Impression

So we received the lovely bath towel and shipping and delivery time was quick so we didn’t have to wait ages. It arrived neatly and securely packaged. Once opened I was pleasantly surprised to see that it came in a cute dust bag. This was very much needed because we all know baby stuff can take up so much spare so having the dust/storage bag was a perfect extra.This is perfect for travelling as well as going to swimming with little one as you can pop it straight in your baby bag and it doesn’t take up room. I double it up as a bag to put swimming bits inside also hashtag result!

Uses

What I love about this hooded bath towel is that it has a Velcro strap that goes around mummy or daddy’s neck so once you pop baby out the bath it’s convenient to wrap baby round. It ensures that baby is not lingering around in the cold or you having to stretch your arm looking for a towel. Once baby is wrapped you can then unstrap easily and pop on changing mat or bed (wherever you decide to change bubs). 

A lot of hooded towels are plain and boring and I feel like as babies get older alot more entertaining needs to take place. The Minene Uk bunny ear towel brings that element of fun to the after bath time experience. Taliyah loves having a good play about after a bath and even just playing with the bunny ears adds some entertainment as well as her looking super cute.  

As an exclusive breastfeeding mom I find that sometimes bath times at night put baby straight to sleep. As they are super relaxed so this bath towel is perfect for keeping baby close, whilst warmly wrapped and nursing them straight from the tub. 

Taliyah like any other baby loves a good splash about during bath time and it can pretty hectic with water ending up in her hair (which she has a lot of). Now simply just drying with a towel cannot soak up all the water so the hooded element is perfect as it soaks up all the extra water but remains dry so she doesn’t catch cold.Bath toys details: B.Kid Squirt’N Sail Penguins from Kidly

Important bits

  • Animal hooded towel comes in two animal options in 5 colour ways
  • Material is soft, cuddly and soaks up water well
  • The clever apron design allows you to keep dry and leaves both hands free for safe lifting
  • Pricing: £22 (currently there’s a 20% Easter discount on all bunny hooded towels, using the discount code – BUNNY

Want to get your hands on one of these cute hooded towels checkout out: http://www.minene.co.uk hope you love this cute but very practical product as much as we do 

– Mrs B

    Baby safety

    Now after carrying a baby for 10 months when they are in this big bad world you want to ensure that they get the best and are always safe. Especially once they are mobile every little thing becomes a hazard. They are so curious and want to explore everything. 

    It’s all fine and dandy putting locks on cupboards, socket covers on, edge protectors; but it defiantly won’t stop your new found walker, crawler, cruiser or roller from going under things. Putting fingers under doors, pulling themselves up to things.

    I decided to invest in a pop up play pen for Taliyah specifically for my moms house as there is alottt of space and alottttt of hazards, plus the floors are wooden so sometimes when Taliyah is trying to cruise she slips and slides.

    Summer Infant Pop up Play Pen

    • Ultra-lightweight and compact the fold up playpen can be set up and taken down in seconds.
    • Perfect for indoor and outdoor use (defo something we will consider taking on holiday). 
    • The floor is water resistant and helps keep baby dry even on damp grass. 
    • I love the fact it has air mesh sides which enable visibility and good breathablity. 
    • Comes complete with a travel bag with shoulder strap which makes it so convenient for on the go travelling. 
    • It is made from folding metal which ensures that it is stable and sturdy, Taliyah enjoys using the frame to pulling herself up and cruising round.
    • I love the fact that it is spacious so she can still crawl about, or have a cheeky nap during the day.

    The boring bits:

    Price: 

    RRP £49.99-69.99

    Shop:

    Summer Infant

    Argos

    Tesco

    Precious little one 

    The Summer Infant Pop up play pen is definitely something I would recommend as it gives your child a chance to have independent play, as well as being safe. 

    I find that is better than the usual pop up cots, or travel cots that some people use as those do not touch the floor so bubs doesn’t get full mobility use. It has definitely changed our play time for the better and these days I don’t have to always carry bubs to pee with me.

    -Mrs B

      Under 1 Roof

      Last week Sunday we got invited to celebrate the 1 year anniversary of the amazing company Under 1 Roof.

      Under 1 Roof is a new and unique children’s space in the heart of South East London; it’s the modern day kids urban oasis.

      What I love about Under 1 Roof is that it literally is what it says on the tin can; everything is under 1 Roof (excuse the pun). The children’s space houses all of the following: 

      • 84 place nursery 
      • Children’s Theatre 
      • Multi-purpose studio 
      • Sensory Room 
      • Pre-school soft-play 
      • Messy Play studio 
      • Well-Being Room 
      • Music Room 
      • Conference Room 
      • Co-Working Space 
      • Play-Cafe 
      • Retail Village 
      • Party Hire

      What this means is no more travelling up and down to various baby classes, no more looking for different locations for after school classes for children. Under 1 Roof house all of these activities in the one location.

      As Taliyah is still a little bubba we explored a few of the options that were age appropriate for her at the 1st birthday party.

      Soft PlayTaliyah loved the soft play area, every area was soft and safe for her to go wild with. It contained a lot of larger soft toys for climbing and sitting on and just for general exploring. The colours were bold and bright which definitely appeals to her senses. What was great about this soft play area was that it was gated off and there was a member of staff outside the gate at all times. Which is very important with small humans as they are fast to crawl or run somewhere they shouldn’t. I would definitely recommend this soft play for anyone in the area. 

      The cost is amazing also: soft play is £5 unlimited time entry for under 5s, under 1s are £1.

      The BalconyWe decided to do some exploring upstairs and landed on the balcony which houses a lot more spaces for other classes that take place. Located on the balcony is The Beam; this system is for over 5s and costs £5 for a wristband for unlimited time (opened after school and weekends). It is an interactive floor and wall that children use their imagination to have fun with. Alongside The Beam was an area with sofas and pop up tents and tunnels. Taliyah enjoyed it very much and me and hubby got a chance to sit down, watch her explore and relax.

      Travelling within Under 1 Roof

      There are areas were buggies can be parked and are safe. As well as the space and all it’s doorways being wide for those who choose to use their buggies around the space. There are stairs that take you you upstairs as well as the accessible lift. 

      It was great to hear that the centre is accessible for children with additional needs. They also have other providers who run sessions in our sensory room plus other rooms for this. 

      I spoke to one of the managers Anne-Marie and she explained that 

      “for example a local children centre use it every saturday and we’ve had wheelchair dance sessions too run by dreams dance. We’re looking to expand this offering and are talking to Its and more charities and groups who can use our facilities”

      This was music to my ears as I have a younger sister who uses a wheelchair so it was amazing to hear that such an amazing place caters for children who need the extra support. I find that a lot of places try to not mix children who have extra needs and create their own space for them. However I believe that creates segregation, I know from experience a child with special needs wants to be around other children that don’t have special needs as well. I feel like this also helps them learn better.

      Sensory roomI love a sensory room and find that it has so many zen qualities. So I was over the moon to have located this on the first floor, Taliyah loved the bright lights, the soft cushions, the bean bags but to name a few. The sensory room is an inclusive and accessible centre for all, primarily for children with special educational needs. With high quality equipment and fully trained staffed. What’s great about this area is that it is opened for the public for an hour everyday (induction is required to use equipment unsupervised).

      The cost of using this amazing facility is: £8 per child, maximum of 6 children, or £25 per hour for exclusive use. 

      The Menagerie After a fun, busy day at Under1Roof nothing beats relaxing at the cafe which is also onsight. The cafe offers a nutritious, healthy menu for the whole family to enjoy. 

      • Drop your children at the nursery, and stop for breakfast. 
      • Grab a coffee on the way to work. 
      • Bring your children to a class, and treat them to lunch with their “classmates” afterwards.
      • Sit and enjoy coffee with friends before your little ones have fun on the soft-play.

      The options are endless, the cafe provides safety proof high-chairs, has sofas and booths to relax (and breastfeed) and has a play area for the little ones also. We had some yummy healthy fruit smoothies and Taliyah enjoyed to.

      The shopsAfter playing and eating who doesn’t love a bit of retail therapy? I know your thinking they have this too. Yep Under 1 Roof has their book and toy shop as well as a beautiful clothing store called Crafty-pear. They have beautiful hand made designs for babies and young children. 

      The Nursery

      This has to be the most creative part of Under 1 Roof. The fact that they have an ofsted registered, recommended and approved 84 place nursery for full/part time for children aged 3 months – 5 years old. As well as their new feature which is the Crèche which is an amazing concept offering more ad hoc childcare to compliment the co working desk hire, spa room with treatments, parent fitness classes. It’s also great just for one off childcare options so parents can leave the site and do what else they may need to. 

      “the  creche provides activities, free play and is more than just a babysitting option”

      Under 1 Roof is an amazing space, the staff are qualified, friendly and willing to go the extra mile to accommodate you and your child’s needs. The space has so many facilities that there is something for everyone. I would definitely recommend this kids oasis for all parents. There are alot of classes for the older children, after school activities, theatre productions, music shows but to name a few. Truly an amazing location with such a warm atmosphere. If you are in the south London area it is definitely worth checking out! If you are a bit further then a nice day out at Under 1 Roof is needed: http://www.under1roofkids.com

      – Mrs B

      Baby butt skin 

      Now I know a big concern for myself when I was pregnant was; ‘what am I going to use on my newborns skin’. 

      Imagine how much research as to be done for skin that’s lived in water for 10 months. So here are my 3 top tips for caring for baby’s beautiful skin. Along with a mini review on each product.

      Clothing care:

      Now this took place before bubs was even born and by took place I mean all clothes we had for her aged 0-3 months and newborn we washed beforehand. I mean you never know what dust particles or even where the clothes is manufactured has been before it ends up in your house. 

      I spent ages looking for a washing detergent and researched that liquid gel was much better than powder for bubs skin. So up till now we use Fairy non bio liquid gel it cleans stubborn stains and leaves her clothes smelling fresh. We also like to use conditioner to keep her clothes super soft so it’s nice against her skin. We use Comfort pure; it’s specifically made with babies in mind which is perfect. 

      For the first 3 months we washed then took her clothes to a laundromat to be dried so it got that good heat dry. After that we air dry her clothes which works well. Up till now I still wash her clothes before she wears new items, but a lot of people say you can stop at 6 months the same way you stop super sterilising all bottles etc. One trick I did adopt was if she had to wear something and there was no time to wash it; turn it inside out switch on the iron put it on max and hot press the item.

      Bath time routine

      I find that it is so easy to fall into the trap as a first time mom to try new things, but I think that consistency is key with babies skin. We have used one bath wash since birth and it has worked well for us. I personally recommend trying one thing for at least two weeks (unless you immediately see something unusual on bubs skin) before trying another thing. That way you can keep track of how bubs skin reacts. The bath soap we use is Infacare; we got given a big bottle of it when we attended the baby show.

      Bubs skin is 10 times more delicate than an adult so Infacare is formulated to be as natural and gentle as possible. 

      • It is ultra-mild and pH balanced with masses of long-lasting bubbles (fun when bubs can sit in bath and splash around). 
      • What’s great about Infacare is that unlike other bubble baths it does not contain ‘Sodium Trideceth Sulfate’, which is a cleanser that is mild but can dry out your skin. 
      • What I really love about Infacare is that it contains emollients (increases the skin hydration by reducing evaporation). 

      At 7 1/2 months we continue to use Infacare for Taliyahs baths and I highly recommend it. I had super sensitive skin as a baby and still do and so does my fiancé so we were panicking about what to use and Infacare has worked well. 

      What is also important when it comes to bath time routine is what you dry bubs with. We use Cuddledry towels which we also stumbled across at the baby show we went to whilst pregnant.

      Taliyah has the ‘original cuddledry handsfree baby bath towel’.

      • It’s great because it is made from pure unbleached cotton and natural bamboo fibre
      • I love the fact that it is safe and secure; you clip it round your neck which makes bathing a stress-free, natural and perfect bonding time
      • Silky soft, highly absorbent and fast drying
      • It contains a double-layer system and has a hood and it draws water away from baby’s skin and hair

      Moisturise for the gawds 

      My personal worst nightmare is dry skin, I had rashes as a child because of my super sensitive skin and growing up later realised I had a lot of allergies. In order to nip it in the bud for Taliyah I decided that I wouldn’t use any perfumed products or any products that were not 100% natural and organic when it came to moisturising.

      From birth we used natural raw shea butter on her skin which kept her skin moisturised and hydrated. I did find that it keeps heat in as well and Taliyah being a sweaty betty she didn’t need the extra heat. So I decided to mix it with coconut oil which is also amazing on the skin. At first we found an organic one from whole foods. Then I stumbled on Kokoso Baby which is a 100% natural head-to-toe infant skincare.

      • What I love about Kokoso baby is that they use the highest quality raw virgin organic fresh-pressed coconut oil specially selected for your bubs skin
      • It doesn’t contain nasty chemicals
      • It has been dermatologically tested and is suitable for sensitive skin
      • I love that even down to the packaging it is baby safe and BPA free

      We also used this to combat her cradle cap and it was amazing as well as if we see any sudden heat or milk rash on her chubby cheeks it literally works overnight.


      – Mrs B

      Weaning Prep

      So we are 6 months now which means we are slowly going to wean onto solids. We will still be breastfeeding as tali still needs her milk intake. So as she turned 6 months on Christmas Day we wanted to mark the great occasion with her first solid me. 

      I made sure I prepared well in advance to ensure that we had all the necessary tools for this amazing adventure. The first item I made sure we had was a high chair because who wants to eat in an uncomfortable chair.

      I purchased her the ‘Travel booster seat sage chevron’ from Mamas & Papas.What I love about this chair is that it’s foldable, lightweight and compact. But still does the high chair job, it’s lined with cushion for full comfort and comes with a nice carry on bag.

      My sister also bought her a full standing high chair for our moms house (when I go back to work she will be staying over there during the day so it’s very practical).

      This high chair is the ‘Billie Faiers MBHC8ZZ Chevron Premium Highchair’ from My Babiie.

      • What’s great about this high chair is that firstly it features 3 recline positions and 6 different height settings.
      • The highchair’s has an extra padded seat means Taliyah is  super comfy for feeding time and the easy removable clean tray makes clearing up easier.

       

      A must have for weaning prep is a food processor (if you plan on making your baby’s healthy meals from scratch. A lot of first time moms want to give their babies that good healthy start so a blender is essential.I researched a lot when it came to a food processor and didn’t only want a blender I wanted something that would steam the food as well. I read a lot of reviews then decided to get Tali this 4 in 1 food processor. This is the ‘Babycook’ by a French brand called Beaba.

      When I stumbled across this beauty I was excited as is steams, blends, reheats and defrosts. So it’s perfectly practical in every way; it also has a one hand use (meaning I can hold bubs in one hand and use the machine with the other). It comes in about 4 colour options, it is light weight, comes with a steam basket and receipe book.

      Once the food processor has been found the next item you need is cutlery (bowls, plates, spoons etc). I was going for a neutral with spunk colour theme for weaning, so lots of whites, greys then a pop of colour (neon green). I found an amazing site called Kidly. They provide amazing customer service as well as being a vendor for a lot of worldwide independent brands.

      Placement and Plate from EZPZ

      • All-in-one placemat & sectioned bowl is made from high quality silicone & strongly suctions to the table, making it difficult for tiny hands to tip over.
      • There are also different sections for different foods so there won’t be any wailing of food touching other foods

      Travel bib and flexi spoon from B.box

      This is such a handy bib and spoon set because it is compact; there’s no need for zip lock bags so after bub has finished eating I just pop the spoon inside, fold the bib into the catcher and zip closed.

      • Easy to wipe clean and dry
      • BPA, Phthalates and PVC free
      • Lightweight and great texture for babies tender gums

      Storage pots

      Now one important necessity for weaning is storage pots. I found these cute ones from the brand BrotherMax also on the Kidly site. These were perfect for us as they followed our colour scheme.

      • They come with a dry wipe pen so you can mark the pots with dates and meal names
      • They hold a nice amount of food
      • They are lightweight and compact
      • They stack neatly ontop of each other or side by side
      • At the bottom they have a pop out feature that allows you to push and if the food is frozen it easily pops out
      • Clever, practical storage pots

      Silicon baby food dispensing spoon
      I stumbled across this handy go to baby bag must have on social media. A female entrepreneur was using this for her baby. So I researched it and found out the brand was Boon and the spoon was called ‘squirt’.

      What I love about this product:

      • Compact and lightweight
      • Easy to fill with food and use
      • Squirts gradual amounts onto spoon
      • Easy to clean and store in baby bag
      • It holds up to 3 oz of food

      Another product that I found from Boon was this baby drying rack  I wanted something practical, yet stylish as well as the item to go with my colour theme so the Boon ‘Grass’ drying rack was perfect!

      • GRASS holds all of bubs accessories as they air dry on the flexible blades that resemble real grass
      • Perfect for drying items of all shapes and sizes
      • Easily holds items upright for drying while excess water collects in bottom tray

      My last weaning prep product is the Munchkin Fresh Food feederWhats great about this is that I can put any piece of food inside it and not get paranoid that Tali will take large chunks out of it (even though she has no teeth her hard gums are strong). This item was given as a gift from my sister as she could tell Taliyah wanted to do more than just eat purée.

      • Great for any food for all ages from 6months +
      • Frozen fruit, fresh fruit, crushed ice, carrots, banana etc
      • Locks tight to prevent baby/child from opening
      • Easy to wash and dry
      • Great handle for baby to hold and be independent


      Now hope you found a few valuable and imformative ideas about prepping for weaning. I always say it’s best to be very prepared when it comes to a baby as anything can happen. I wasn’t sure if I was going to do baby led weaning or just implement purée, but I’ve realised a bit of both is good as it eases her into these new textures. I’m also making sure not to force anything too much as it’s meant to be an exciting experience for us both.

      – Mrs B

      Nov 26

      So we have had a busy weekend last weekend which we spent at the first Baby to Toddler show in Excel London. During my pregnancy we attended the Mother & Baby show which was amazing for so many items I needed in preparation for baby T.

      I managed to secure free complimentary tickets to the shopping event which was even better. We attended both days getting there very late on the first day and in great time the second. Tickets usually cost between £6-8 and you receive at least one freebie by the sponsor. On this occasion it was a free MAM self sterilising bottle which I love.

      Taliyah was super excited to be going out and dressed up styled in her brown moccasins from Totsi & Bo.
      We were super excited about having a fun filled family day out and nothing beats shopping for our princess, and we sure did pick up some good buys for her.

      Baby T is currently teething (not experiencing too much pain but just the need to sooth her gums) she puts everything in her mouth and enjoys a good chomp. We stumbled across this stall that was selling teething jewellery called Nibbling. They provide stylish silicone teething necklaces, bracelets, dummy clips and teethers. This was perfect for T as she loves to chew every part around the actual teether, so having a dummy clip that she could chew was perfect. There are so many design and style options so we were spoilt for choice. She loves her new teether and it’s her new favourite chewie.

      We then stocked up on a few Christmas stocking fillers for her in the form of some age 4+ and 6+ months items from MAM.

      What was even better was MAM was doing 3 for £10. We picked up a starter cup with handles as she loves grabbing things. Once we start weaning her and giving her small sips of water she can enjoy this. A pack of soothers (she’s not a dummy user but for car journeys when they get unbearable they soothe and comfort her). Lastly for our trio we got her a phase 2 bite and relax. We have the phase 1 bite and relax which is for her front teeth, so why not pick up the second phase for her back teeth.

      Here are a few other items we picked up from the show:

      Booties from a cute boutique called Mamou. If you’ve not figured out now both Taliyahs parents love shoes especially unique styles so these were perfect, fur lined and soft breatheable leather. Mamou products are individually crafted by hand, using soft and durable natural materials. Not to mention the cute packaging and they were at a discounted price under £20 so definitely a bargain.

      We also picked up this product from Cuddlemates, it is a pillow friend for babies that start to roll and toddlers/kids.

      As Taliyah is now an expert roller and is co-sleeping she loves the big space and rolling from momma to daddy during the night. She is also starting to sleep on her side more often by herself so this pillow was perfect. It mimics the comfort of your parent being there with the length and is soft and squishy for lots of cuddles. 

      “Cuddle Mates encourage kids to sleep independently. Their size and shape allows little kids to snuggle into them for a better night’s sleep”

      T loves cuddling her Tilly the tiger and we also use it to safeguard her from rolling too close to the edge as well as another aid for tummy time.

      Now my personal favourite buy from the Baby to Toddler show was Ts weaning blender. I have researching the best blender to get for her once she starts her journey into solids and stumbled across a brand called Beaba. It is originally a French brand but have distributors across Europe and USA. They have amazing 4 in 1 blenders which not only blends, but steams, reheats and defrosts. We ordered it from the Peppermint stand (who were the main sponsors of the event) and we even managed to grab a 20% off the RRP. The baby cooks come in 5 different colour ways which is great to match any colour theme you have. Once it arrives I can give more details about how it works etc but from the reviews I have read online I cannot fault it and I am super excited.

      The Baby to Toddler show was an amazing shopping experience, the facilities were amazing. They had the MAM feeding area were they provided rocking chairs and private nursing areas for breastfeeding mommas then in the open space they had high chairs for the little ones. As well as providing food for the baby’s which was sponsored by Babease. Who provide a range of organic baby food full vegetables, seeds, grain and pulse. There was also the baby changing area who provided nappies and wipes alongside the stokke changing tables and tommie tippee sanogenic bins. It was nice to see not only mothers but fathers getting stuck in.

      We got to take cute family pictures which were provided by Bumpkins and we got to keep them. We also got to secure a heavily discounted photography session which we are excited about.

      Our day ended with us all shopped out and nothing beats a warm hot chocolate (for dad) and my all time fav Chai latte to end the day

      I would definitely recommend these events to expectant mothers as well as new mothers as they have so many products and all are at great prices.

      – Mrs B

      Nov 11

      As a first time mom I find I am learning on the role, yes I see motherhood as a role just probably the most important role I’ll play in life.

      This morning taliyah wanted to do a little dress up and be mummy in a headscarf, her level of sassiness has skyrocketed since she pierced her ears im sure.

      This week I wanted to review a product but I’ve got to give it a few more days of use before I can give my honest opinion about it. So instead I thought would be good to post a mini haul of my day to day products for baby T.

      My first and all time must have product is WaterWipes

      Now I can’t take credit for finding these because it was my fiance he found it when I was pregnant. He is all about organic and really healthy living lifestyle so I’m not surprised he found it. At first I was sceptical about this product because the price compare to the normal wipes is pretty high. So I decided that I would go in store and physically compare products, so I compared the water wipes to a standard newborn sensitive wipe. I was so shocked to find the amount of chemicals that were in the newborn supersensitive well known wipes (won’t name and shame). Waterwipes are literally the best wipes ever 99.9% water and 0.1% fruit extract. The product speaks for itself, its kind on the most sensitive baby skin and they never come out dry. We have been using these since birth and I highly recommend them to all expectant mothers and any mothers who’s baby has sensitive skin. Defo ditch all the chemical stuff for these natural wipes.

      Our next daily go to item is Multivitamin cod liver oil

      What I love about this most is that it’s orange flavoured so it’s not bitter on bubbas taste buds. It can be used from 1 month onwards and is packed with nutrients for the growth and development of our precious babies. My health visitor recommended vitamin d drops but I find that this has more nutritional value. It has no artificial colours or flavouring and contains vitamin A (skin), C (immune defense), D (bones and teeth), Pantothenic acid (mental performance), E and B6. I must say it is a daily struggle because she doesn’t like medicines so we have a little battle, but it’s definitely worth it.

      Now this everyday must have is Gripe water

      It’s definitely one of my favourites and not my own find but my mothers. She said she used it for all her kids and it worked like a treat. It’s used for gripping pain babies may have after eating their milk or if they feel gassy. It’s commonly used from 1 month and it’s literally the texture of water. What I do is if I have expressed milk I pour the required amount into the bottle mix it up and give it to her. I also find it helps when she has hiccups a lot and eases her trap wind. A lot of places suggest infacol which we did try but I found it too thick and was too sweet for my liking.

      My last everyday item is Taliyahs’ tummy time roller.
      I purchased this from Mothercare and it has literally been a life saver for tummy time. T hated laying on her stomach when she was about a month oldunless it was on me or her daddy, but I was adamant to get her to lay on her tummy for a few minutes a day as it helps with neck muscle development.

      So I searched and found this amazing tummy time roll, t instantly fell in love with it. It has a big mirror on one side with a retractable vibrating ball (pauz) on the other side it has ribbons, a teething ring and other dangly bits. It’s sensory heaven for babies as it makes the crunchy sound on one end then once she rolls on it makes a jingly sound.

      Now she’s so much more happier laying on her stomach independently and has amazing control of her neck now

      Hope you enjoyed my day to day products post

      – Mrs B