Monthly Archives: November 2012

Berlei – Running Bra

After a busy week keeping up with Boo’s social calender, I didn’t manage to make it to the gym. I had the best of intentions, but both roads which take me there have been badly flooded with all the torrential rain we’ve had. I didn’t want to risk it even in day light! Instead in my mission to try to maintain my fitness, I have been enjoying brisk walks and even a run in the park! Now I’m not sure about you, but I’m big busted enough that I need plenty of support even when I’m walking briskly! Running is physically painful without a good sports bra, and I have to confess I always seem to buy the big ugly ones which hold you in tightly and are not exactly beautiful!

Berlei sent me a fabulous sports running bra in a vibrant shock pink, I instantly loved the fun colour but was dubious that the bra would be supportive enough as it looks and feels just like a normal bra. After a few brisk laps walking round the park, I decided to try a run, I was impressed with how supportive the bra is and how comfortable. I like the fact you can wear the straps either straight or cross over, as it enables me to wear it with my racer back gym tops discreetly! Inside each cup is a shell type design which provides maximum support (even when you’re an F cup like me!) called ‘ultrasonic welding’ – i bet you never thought you’d get that in a bra!

The fabric is super soft, and I confess this is my favourite bra currently! I would happily wear it all the time – it really is that comfortable! The Sports Running Bra comes in black, white, shock pink and electric blue and is ideal for high impact sports. Although described as a running bra, I think it’d be a great bra to wear even when horse riding to minimise bounce! They also do matching briefs, which aim to help reduce chaffing and offer maximum comfort – these are already on my Christmas list!

You can grab 50% off the Berlei Running Bra check out the Berlei Blog for details how!

Reclaiming our bed!

I’ve been battling with E to get him to sleep, ever since he was so poorly a couple of weeks ago, he has got into the habit of climbing into our bed in the early hours of the morning, which then got earlier and earlier until the point where he wouldn’t get in his bed at all. To be honest, we were so tired we put up little resistance, preferring some sleep to no sleep, and while I don’t believe we made a mistake in having him co-sleep while he was ill, I realised rapidly this was becoming a bad habit..

We began to try tactics to encourage him into his own bed and more to the point to keep him them, it has been incredibly frustrating and I have found myself making matters so much worse by raising my voice to say the N-O word. Last night however, we had a small breakthrough, after battling for an hour, I decided that it was time to get him to settle himself, there was nothing wrong and he just needed to get used to comforting himself to sleep. I let him cry, I found myself crying quietly to, as I hate hearing him upset, but within 10minutes he was asleep. The downside, he was asleep on the soon as I picked him up he woke up again…another ten minutes and he was sound asleep..on the floor but this time he had taken his pillow and blanket?! After wondering whether we should move him, we decided to wait until he cried and then we’d move him back into his bed. 

At 3.30am big brother Boo woke up and shouted I need a drink which woke E up, Mr G settled them both back into their beds, E started shrieking..I sighed and wondered what would happen next. After a few minutes shrieking, E started to talk asking “Daddy, I want to come in with you now” we ignored the request and it continued “Daddy, Cat, come here cat..” silence, shrieking “DADDDDDDDDDY!! CAT!! Come here” then silence. We looked at each other as suddenly we heard the familiar pitter patter of E’s feet running across the bedroom, but this time they were heading into his room and towards his bed..  At 7.30am I peered in as he woke up happily in his own bed, and I smiled as we’ve taken the first step towards getting him back into his own bed and reclaiming our bed as our own! I’m expecting another battle tonight, but they always say the first night is the hardest and we’ve done that..wish me luck!

Christmas Cocktails!

With Christmas rapidly approaching, it’s that time when I like to think about entertaining and there is nothing my friends love more than a cocktail while we catch up on all the gossip! Tia Maria in it’s stylish new bottle with sleek lines and simple colour scheme, it’s a bottle which looks good in the drinks cupboard!

Tia Maria have sent me some sophisticated ideas for cocktails this festive season! If you’ve never tried Tia Maria it’s a coffee liqueur which combines Jamaican rum with a superior coffee, to create rich luxurious liqueur. I used to drink it mixed with cola, but these suggestions are far more sophisticated and fun!

If you want to be shaken and not stirred how about trying Tia Maria’s version of the James Bond favourite:

Tia Espresso Martini
25cl espresso coffee
25cl vodka
10cl sugar syrup to taste
Coffee beans to Garnish

Combine all ingredients together with cubed ice in a Boston and shake. Pour into a martini glass and garnish with coffee beans.

Ideal for anyone who likes a luxurious flavour! If you’re not sure about a Martini, how about trying a great winter warmer? Tia Ginger is the perfect way to warm up after a hard day Christmas shopping! The ginger flavour is not only warming, but I also think it gives a comforting flavour to the cocktail – and makes me think of festive foods!

Tia Ginger

Half a fresh lime
Ginger Beer

Pour ingredients into a highball glass filled with ice, squeeze in the juice of half a fresh lime and garnish with fresh mint

Do you have a favourite cocktail which you make with Tia Maria
 Disclaimer: I received a small sample in return for sharing these recipes with my readers. Please drink responsibly, Drink aware.

Weekend Comfort with Berlei

I recently managed to spend a lovely Sunday spent with a friend from my childhood who I’ve not seen for 15years. We randomly bumped into each other a year ago and we’ve stayed in touch since – she lives abroad now so it really was a chance meeting! It was cold and incredibly wet but after a coffee we walked around the Cathedral grounds and reminisced about the things we’d got up to in our youth and even our childhood sweetshop which now stands sadly very empty! It was quite amazing to see even though our lives have taken such different turns, we still get on as well as we did all those years ago! I guess it’s true what they say about real friends being forever, it’s great feeling so comfortable with someone that you can talk about anything!
I’m all about feeling comfortable at the moment, it must be my Winter survival instincts!  Unless I really have to, I will never go without a bra – I feel naked without one, as I have quite a large cup and they need some support! However, there are times, when I’ve longed for some support without the structure of wearing a bra. Berlei have found me a solution in the form of the Weekend Cami, this is a really pretty cami which I have to confess looks even better on, but I wasn’t brave enough to photograph myself in it!

The fabric is incredibly soft and comfortable against skin. The cami features a ‘secret wire’ system which provides the support, and it really does support! The lace panels flatter your bust and I found myself showing the lace off by wearing it under carefully selected lower cut or off the shoulder tops to create a really pretty effect. The Weekend Boxer Briefs are a lovely combination with the cami, the lace panels are used to provide a feminine style to a simple comfort design.
Photo: Berlei

 I felt very feminine but ultra comfortable while wearing the weekend range, it was as though I was wearing a really dare I say it ‘sexy’ underwear set, yet without the impracticalities they can sometimes present! They’re comfy enough to lounge in and practical enough to provide the support and comfort I need – especially at the weekend! 

You can grab 25% off the weekend range if you shop before Friday 23rd November 2012, visit the Berlei Blog to see how! 

Disclaimer: All opinions are based on my own honest experience with the products, I was sent the items by Berlei for the purposes of the review.

Madonna is the Marmite of my World.

The weather is dreary, and I feel like I could sleep for a week, it makes making an effort to look nice well….difficult! I keep looking at myself in the mirror and thinking..”Wow! It’s about time you wore some make up..” I feel like a scruff. I can’t help but wonder if women in the media ever wake up thinking that they’d rather just spend their day in a pair of yoga pants with no make up on? What would Madonna do?

Madonna would pull off wearing her yoga pants, an oversized shirt, with a pair of heels and smudgey eye make-up as some kind of fashion statement.  Madonna, being Madonna would probably think ‘I don’t care what you all think, I’m Madonna and I’ll wear what I want..I know I look good anyway!’ We’d all sit there and love/hate her as normal, as let’s face it she is a bit Marmite. This is where I have a lot to learn from Madonna!

I’ve sat and cleared out my make up bag, it is now depressingly empty and in need of replenishing. My plan is to invest in a good mascara, some tinted moisturiser and a little blusher. Oh.. and I’m going to get my hair cut.. I’m going to pull off this yummy Mummy thing this winter! I wonder if I’ll have more energy when I see myself looking yummy instead of slummy? Does anyone have any suggestions on easy ways I can keep myself looking yummy this winter? 


Horrid Henry Early Christmas Present DVD Review and Giveaway!

Horrid Henry and the Early Christmas Present is a fabulous way to start the Christmas countdown! Abbey Home Media sent us a copy to review, and I discovered it is a great DVD to keep the little ones busy and get them ready for the festive season!

The first episode is a seasonal one, and is a lesson from Henry about why it’s important to be extra good on the run up to Christmas. It follows his exploits as he tries to make sure Father Christmas brings him at least one present! Boo sat watching and agreeing that he really ought to be trying to be good if he wanted anything from his ever growing (and for the first time personally written by his own hand) Christmas list! The other episodes are full of fun, and see Henry in a spot of bother as he tries to baby sit and in a hilarious episode sees brotherly love from his Father’s view.. The DVD isn’t too festive, so could be watched throughout the year, and both boys enjoyed watching it (as did I!). Boo is a big fan of Horrid Henry, and I think this is possibly our favourite Horrid Henry DVD, with some fabulously funny episodes on! It would make a lovely stocking filler or Christmas gift for any child who likes a giggle! 

Abbey Home Media are giving you the chance to win 1 of 4 copies by following the steps on rafflecopter below, and if you can’t wait it is available to buy now!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Calming Sensations thanks to Tea from Twinings!

I’m not going to lie, the last few weeks have been incredibly stressful, I have wanted to scream! My Grandmother apparently used to say ‘there is no stress a cup of tea can’t take away’ clearly she was a very wise woman, as thanks to a lovely delivery from Twinings Tea, I have been able to test her theory out and indeed the very act of making my tea has proved very therapeutic!

Twinings sent me a selection from their Sensation range, Double Mint, Lime & Ginger and Camomile & Maple, I always feel herbal tea is a cup of luxury, I guess it helps as Mr G won’t even try the stuff, so it is mine – all mine! I couldn’t wait to try the Double Mint, as I have a real passion for peppermint tea – would this Double Mint offering pack the minty punch I was hoping for?? I was not disappointed, this is truly the best cup of mint tea I have had the pleasure to indulge in, it really has got a strong mint flavour which is hugely refreshing and still soothing as a Peppermint tea should be!

The calming elements of the Camomile & Maple have certainly been tested and while I enjoyed the soothing elements, I almost found the tea to be a little too sweet, although ideal for when I was utterly exhausted! Lime and Ginger, I was uncertain whether I would enjoy, but the warming ginger combined with the citrus was a lovely uplifting tea creating an ideal start to a a wet Monday morning or relieving the post-lunch blues! Plus.. I love that the tea bags come with this special message..

Thanks Twinings..I will!

Whether you’re looking for a Christmas present or just a gift to cheer someone up, Twinings have a great range of tea gifts on offer, I especially like the Literary Tea gifts – such a lovely idea to send someone I can think of a few special people who would love this! If you’re after something really special, why not try (or gift!) some white tea? High in natural anti-oxidants, with much lower levels of caffeine than black tea or coffee it might be the ideal choice for a pre-Christmas detox?

Disclaimer: Thanks to Twinings for sending me some lovely Tea for the purposes of the review.

Decluttering continues.. Christmas preparation begins…

With half term over, it’s the time when I start preparing for dare I say it… Christmas! Although as Boo is off school poorly today and they’ve said as he was sick he’ll have to be off tomorrow to.. things will have to be slightly delayed but it doesn’t stop my planning! 

While Boo’s at home I’m concentrating on de-cluttering, I was doing so well at clearing things and then made the error of starting on cupboards..cue things being ‘found’ and the clutter beginning to gather once more. I’ve concluded that clutter is not something which I can deal with once and forget about, but more an ongoing operation! Boo’s school is doing a bag to school soon, so I plan to fill the bag with clothing and old bedding, hopefully clearing a little cupboard space which might in turn enable me to clear some of the bedroom clutter which keeps creeping up on us! I’m determined that by Christmas the house will be clutter free!

Christmas, I have already ordered our Christmas lunch from Waitrose as I managed to find a Christmas slot which suited us perfectly! I have yet to inform the family that we’re having Christmas at home again this year, but as Mr G will be working all the way up to the big day I think it’s only fair..although whether that view will be shared I’m not sure.. I suppose I ought to work out which day we’re going where over the holiday too..I must make the calls and save the dates! Is it too early to write Christmas cards?! According to Boo it’s not too early to start his Christmas list..

We’re sending a parcel out to Uganda to the charity Hands for Hope, they need some Christmas decorations and so we’re sharing a little Christmas cheer. I also think it helps Boo to understand the real meaning of Christmas by helping others and learning more about other children in the world. those are my plans for the Christmas run up, now the question is will I manage to succeed in being as organised as I’m hoping??

Fun childrens clothing!

Sometimes I find buying clothes for the boys difficult, you see I want them to wear fun clothes which they will enjoy wearing and I will enjoy seeing them in. All too often clothes for children – especially toddlers, are just mini versions of adults clothes, and don’t scream fun!

When I came across Love it, Love it, Love it, I was delighted to see that fun clothes for children were out there! Brightly coloured with bold patterns and funky designs, toddlers clothes are fun! Proof that boys can have just as much fun with their wardrobe!

I love the retro patterns on these lovely Smafolk tops and rompers, sadly my boys are both to big to fit the rompers, but I’m sure I’ll be able to let my friends treat their children! There are some lovely organic clothes to which are fabulous for sensitive skin, I’m especially fond of the green cloud jacket which goes up to age 8 – such fun for either a boy or girl!


Music for Kids: Pirate Recorder set!

For quite a while Boo has been showing an interest in learning more about music, infact Grandad dug out an old recorder and encouraged him to play it, which he did happily, although tunelessly and without allowing anyone to help! So when we got offered the opportunity to review a Pirate Recorder set we knew Boo would love to have a go!

Kids Recorder Set

There are two sets available, Princess or Pirate, we opted for Pirates! The set arrives in a nice box, complete with the recorder, stickers, recorder case, book, cd and finger chart. Continue reading