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A Messy T Shirt Challenge With River Island*


We love a good old messy challenge so when we were challenged to design our own T we were super excited to get going. I am in no way a Pinterest mum, the way we tend to role is get lots of glue, sparkly things and hope for the best (not too much glitter stuck between the grains in my table)!

A Messy T Shirt Challenge With River Island*

So the Tshirt we have can be found in T-Shirts link.

We loved taking part in this and Daisy was over the moon about it. She was especially excited for the pom poms which are her absolute dream. I love how she did it around the neckline like a fluffy little collar! Very clever, maybe I have a future designer on my hands!

We then run glue all over the T and then sprinkled glitter on top, leaving a cute little, glitzy design all over it for that extra sparkle! All little girls love a bit of glitter!

Easy Toddler crafts


Pom Pom craft

It isn't the first time I have had River Island clothing for Daisy, I can't say I have bought much from there but the bits we have had have been really great quality and have washed well. I do find that sometimes the clothes can be a little grown up for a toddler (I am not all that trendy with Daisy, think cute, girly dresses and tights) but actually looking again now the range seems to have evolved and this season is a little softer, so I may have to go in and have a look. If I do pick anything up then I will be sure to share it with you!

Hayley x


*PR Collaboration - All Thought are my own

What To Buy a Man For Christmas (Stocking Fillers) | A Christmas Guide For Men*



It is that time of year again when every man and his dog gets out the Christmas Wishlist posts. I will have that coming later but for now I am doing a Christmas Guide to buying for the men in your life. We need every bit of help we can get don't we?

Ben is pretty tricky to buy for, if he wants something throughout the year then he generally buys it himself. Which leaves me very little to go for at Christmas time. I also have another problem where by his hobbies are quite expensive, Mountain biking & Photography which can mean unless I want to spend a lot of money it can be difficult.

But these are a few bits I have spotted over the last few weeks and have either purchased or popped on a list to get hold of over the next couple of weeks. I will list the items below for you, just in case :)


Unusual gifts for men


Bright and Funky undies and socks: Jacamo
Scratch Map : Prezzybox
Wash bag collection: Prezzybox
Lego personalised frame: Ourbricklibrary @Etsy
Beer selection: Beerhawk
USB Mixtape: Iwantoneofthose.com




*PR Collaboration. All opinions are my own, samples were revived. 

My Threenager | Becoming a YES Parent


Threenager? A phrase I hadn't heard of being having a toddler. The urban dictionary defines “threenager” as a 3-year-old spouting attitude like a spoiled teenager.


A threenager
We escaped the terrible twos with Daisy, she was seemingly an easy toddler who was pretty easy to entertain and look after. I guess she still is really, but with a few funny... turns? (That seems pretty awful to say out loud) Basically, she has a few moments, some days a lot more than others where she is difficult. Difficult to please, difficult to console and well makes the day feel pretty sad at times. It makes me wonder is it the reality of nurturing an independent, strong headed girl? But then I know a fair few little boys who are encountering the same types of behaviours.

The worst thing is that it is nothing in particular that can trigger it, or nothing glaringly obvious that I have spotted anyway. If I had it may be easy to resolve and possibly avoid! Most of the time the "turn" is at home and so it isn't as if she falling to the floor in the street or anything distressing like that. But it is still so upsetting. She can start by shouting the odds and crying uncontrollably, to basically looking like she has being possessed. Now it isn't normal behaviour for her so something is causing it. But what?

Could it be that her knowledge of the world is growing but her complete understanding isn't keeping up and it is frustration building? Or is it that she is growing and it is just emotions? Caused by all that growing she is doing? I really do think it is a combination of all those factors, plus some. Some I will have missed, some I am oblivious to.

She is so loving and caring most of the time, so placid and pleasant than when she does get these moments it is even more out of character. It is like we are walking on egg shells, terrified we will upset this little dictator at any given time!

It isn't standard behaviour for her, she isn't a "naughty" (I know, I know, we aren't supposed to use that phrase any more, labelling and all that) child, she is a pleasure to be around and i love spending time with her, which is why I just wish those awful moments away. I like to reflect on the better times we have together and make sure I spend that quality time with her to listen and chat and be at the same level. Bedtime is the perfect example, it gives us a little moment to sit and read, talk about book, talk about days and talk about the next day. That way I know she has gone to sleep at the end of a day knowing she is listened to, understood and loved, usually in a happy place.



How to become a yes parent

I guess the purpose of this post was to say I think it is normal. Normal for a 3 year old to have emotional out bursts, normal to test their parent/ carers patience and well just normal to be 3 years old. To get through it I am trying to be patience, considerate and as loving as possible. Trying to be that yes parent, not avoiding any situations but hopefully making it easier for us all on the whole.

How have you found that third year?!

Hayley x

Spooky, Grubby Faces with WaterWipes | Removing Face Paint* AD


It won't be news to you if you have been around here a while that WaterWipes are a staple in our house. I can't say I use them for everything now that my babies are a bit bigger but I always have a pack knocking around the kitchen ready to tackle grubby faces after particularly messy dinners like bolognaise! I always just think they are so much kinder to their faces than other wipes I could have around the house.

WaterWipes Review


WaterWipes claim to be the world’s purest baby wipes, no nasties, just natural fruit extracts and water – which makes them the ideal tool to remove all the face paint, chocolate and fake bloody from those little faces at Halloween.


Top Tips for Removing Stubborn Face Paint

  • Avoid fragranced wipes as these may irritate your child’s skin. WaterWipes are the perfect go to this Halloween as they are 99.9% purified water with a drop of fruit extract.


  • Generic wet wipes may contain oil extracts which act as a perfect seal to skin pores, just a little watch out!


  • Do not  scrub the paint off – this will only push the paint deeper into the pores which will cause further irritation to your child’s sensitive skin and obviously may be a little sore if you're having to scrub! 


  • Gently wiping in a circular motion will be the most effective way to remove stubborn face paint. As children’s skin is much thinner than adults make sure you do it gentley. 

Spooky, Grubby Faces with WaterWipes | Removing Face Paint* AD

Are Waterwipes worth it?

Hayley x

*PR Collaboration

How To Improve your Blogs DA Score? | What Is a DA Score?


It was a long time after I started my blog that I started to notice the word DA being thrown about. I would get questions such as what is your DA? And I had no clue. Over time i have learnt the basics of SEO and have realised that it is simply a metric that can be used with your website/ page/ blog.

How To Improve your Blogs DA Score? | What Is a DA Score?



I thought I would start to talk a little about SEO in posts becuase I get a lot of questions about starting a blog, SEO tips and all kinds of things inbetween. I am in no way an expert, I am self taught but on theother hand I have made my blog fairly succesful and consistent. My DA fluctuates between 26-30 on average, so by no means am I a "top Blogger", but I am consistent and the work that I put it does pay off, if I had more time tp spend on it then I am sure I could improve that but at the moment I am content with that score.

So what is DA?

For Google not all websites are equal. That is stating the obvious. Some sites will get tons of search traffic from Google every single day (sites like Ebay, Wikipedia, Amazon,…), while others are struggling to show up in the search pages when someone types in relevant words on the search engines such as Google.

Domain authority (DA) is a metric, developed by SEO, to predict the ability of a website / domain to rank in search engines. Domain authority uses a 0 to 100 logarithmic scale. A high Domain authority score means your complete website / all the pages on your domain have the potential to rank well in search engine results. (Paragraph extract gained from MOZ).

So one way to think about it is, if you compare your website’s DA score with that of your competitor’s, the site with the higher DA score is likely to rank higher in search engine searches.

So how do you improve your DA?

Because Domain authority is calculated based on 40+ link based metrics by MOZ, you should focus on getting relevant quality back links from high authority domains. Definitely easier said than done. Think guest posts, aiming for blogs or websites that have high standing in the market, a lot of traffic and great content. Submitting content to be featured on these sites is a great start, getting the back links will contribute to your DA. Of course you want to be aiming for strong DA's so simply check their links on a site like MOZ and you will quite quickly see what you are working with.

Another tip is to do with domain age. The older your domain is, the higher standing your score could be. Basically try not to change your domain name again and again and keep it consistent. If you are a BlogSpot / wordpress blogger, it’s a good idea to get your own domain name from somewhere like GoDaddy.

One really good tip I would always give is to look at internal linking. Make sure your every post is linked to at least one other post or page on your blog, and when you publish a new blog post, go back and link from your old posts. This will also pass link juice from old posts to the new one and therefore gaining links.

Hope this helps a little!

Hayley x

Is Christmas Really Coming? Why Do We Talk About It So Early?*


I know, I shouldn't mention the C word. But I just have.

Christmas bucket list


It is very unlike me to dare say it before mid-November and it is only October at the moment. However life is busy. Life with 2 children, my job, my blog, the house renovations, the house work, a tiny social life (yes, the kids have a better one than I do!) all add up to busy weeks. Weeks that absolutely fly by in a blink of an eye.

I also fear that with the work on the house to start imminently that it will mean the back end of the year is going to feel even more hectic and chaotic than it usually would. Hence me talking about Christmas. I just want to feel content with the idea that I may be ready for it this year, that I may enjoy December and soak up the festivities rather than battling them.

I don't mean that I will be getting the decs down and putting up the tree any time soon, that will always be the weekend before Christmas in our house. But it does mean I am starting to think about writing gift lists, buying pressies early when I see them on sale or when I think someone may like it and storing them away in what I have called "The Christmas box"!

I have never taken this tactic before and I have no idea if I will fail miserably come December but the thought is there, for now at least.

So some things I want to start thinking about and planning:


  • Christmas Wish List - And I don't mean this in a material way. I mean things I want us to do over winter and Christmas, so frosty walks, Christmas crafts, seeing Father Christmas, Christmas tree farm etc... 

  • Have a think about what we will need this year in terms of decorations, lights etc. Also the Christmas bedding (I like to go all out!), do I need any more or shall I change it up? See my post here from last year about which I went for! 

  • Photo Books. I like to have the years photographs, our favourites, made into photo books. Sometimes I give them as gifts but sometimes just for us. Otherwise I find we take all these photos throughout the year and then they're never to be looked at again. 

  • Gift lists - Ideas of what we will be looking to buy this year for various people. We don't go all out and go wild, because that isn't what Christmas is about for us but I do like to get gifts that mean something or that someone would really love. 
Anything else I should add?

Hayley x

*PR Collaboration



Pumpkin Picking at Llynclys Shropshire | Shropshire Days Out


I know, I know, such a cliche... A blogger that hunts out pumpkins for photographs at this time of year. But actually this was my first time jumping on the bandwagon.


free days out

free days out


I love autumn and everything that comes with it, the colours, the weather, the smells, you know what I mean I am sure. I love taking photographs and love to compile them at the end of the year into memory books of that year and quite often there is a void between summer and Christmas festivities so this was the perfect day out.

It was a nice dry, sunny weekend and I always like to get out when we can and of course something more interesting than our usual walk down to the play park goes down well with the kids.

Llynclys Hall Farm Shop is not too much of a drive for us and it was well worth it. If you have never been before then it really is worth a trip. It is free entry and although it will probably only fill about 2 hours of your day, it really was nice.

As you would expect there were a lot of pumpkins and so Daisy found this brilliant, trying to lift them, finding funny shaped ones, baby ones and massive ones! They had built a tiered wall from hay and placed pumpkins all over it which was lovely to take photos of. There were just loads of photo opportunities.

They had a barn with kids activities in such as chalk boards, ride on tractors and cars, drawing tables etc which was a nice little touch. And for us, a coffee van. Sadly we didn't get to have a coffee or a nice hot chocolate but next time...

I highly recommend the trip :)

pumpkin farm shropshire

pumpkin farm shropshire

Pumpkin Picking at Llynclys Shropshire | Shropshire Days Out

Pumpkin Picking at Llynclys Shropshire | Shropshire Days Out


Hayley x

Sandemans New Europe Tours Review | Prague Free Walking Tour


If you have seen my latest travel post then you will already know that we took a free walking tour whilst in Prague for a weekend. I thought I would share our experience here and also talk about another tour that we purchased with them too; The Castle Tour.

Free walking tour prague

When we were looking at things to do in the city before we actually went Ben mentioned a walking tour to me and I admit my first reaction was an almighty cringe. It sounded like my worst nightmare. Being dragged about the city at someone elses pace being talked to for hours on end about history and religion and various other subjects that could become dull after the first hour or so.

But one of our friends had done tours like this before when in Prague and various other places and highly recommended them. Although she is a history teacher so would be far more interested in the details than I am, so I was still a little apprehensive but thought if it is free, what have we got to lose really? Ben agreed that if it was terrible we could leave at any point and make our excuses.

We booked in for the 9.30 tour, so an early start for us as we were staying just out of the city on a tram journey away. So much for a lie in when holidaying without the kids! We met outside Cartier by the main square in the old town and then met our guide for the day, Ian. Ian was a Brazilian who had been living in Prague for a number of years and he really did make the tour. He set the pace just right, fast moving, full of interesting facts, nothing too heavy and moving on from subject to subject to keep the interest alive. He was really quite funny (as in humorous) and a really likeable character.

We saw the following parts of the city:

Old Town Square & Astronomical Clock
View of Charles Bridge
House of the Black Madonna & Museum of Cubism
Church of Our Lady before Týn
View of Prague Castle
Rudolfinum – Czech Philharmonic
Old New Synagogue & the Golem
Art Nouveau Municipal House
St. Nicolas’ Church

It was a three hour tour and honestly it absolutely flew by. We really enjoyed it.

Sandemans New Europe Tours Review | Prague Free Walking Tour

Sandemans New Europe Tours Review | Prague Free Walking Tour


The tours are free and you may be wondering how they do this? Well it is expected that you pay them at the end with what you think the tour is worth, so in the form of a tip. Although us stiff upper lipped British may find this a little awkward it really was no problem and we paid exactly what we would have paid elsewhere for a paid trip, and it was well worth it.

We enjoyed it so much that we actually booked on to their Castle tour the following day. This is a tour that you pay for when booking but we did get a small discount because of already being booked on to another of their tours.

I have to be honest and this tour I didn't enjoy so much. Our guide was not like Ian had been the day previous. He was much slower paced, talked about every single thing is the tiniest detail and just didn't manage to keep my attention for very long. I have to say I found it a little frustrating. Just in that I wanted to get on and see more rather than standing around chatting about things that really didn't interest me very much. That may be a little unfair as some of the group really did seem to be interested so it would depend what kind of detail you wanted to go into and the type of personality you warm to. He was a nice guy but the engagement lacked somewhat. He also somehow managed to walk us about a mile up a hill away from the castle at the end to a brewery for no apparent reason, I would much rather him have left us in the areas of the castle so we continue to look around. It was a slightly odd ending and seemed to have no real schedule or plan.

 Although part of me does wonder that if we hadn't loved the day before so much and learnt so much about the city that we would have actually found his tour more interesting. I also think that this tour seemed to fall on to a Saturday and so the castle was busy, there was little movement around the grounds because of waiting for other people to move about and we couldn't even get into the cathedral which was disappointing. None of which was our tour guides fault. We didn't have a bad day but it just didn't compare to the day before.



Hayley x

Planning a Winter Break for the Whole Family*


It always feels good to get away from the daily grind of chores and work and it is no secret that we love to get away. When you break out of your routine, even for just a few days, you return home feeling refreshed and you feel like you have spent some quality time together as a family.

Even in the winter, we like to take short breaks. Usually, you pay less for accommodation and there are no crowds to cope with, so travelling at this time of the year is an especially good idea.

 Planning a Winter Break for the Whole Family*


PACK THE RIGHT CLOTHES

You need to make sure you are ready for all weather conditions, which means packing carefully. A good approach is to pack clothes that are easy to wear in layers. For example, the right pair of men´s joggers can be worn under a pair of jeans. On a warmer day, they are ideal for wearing for a walk on the beach. Of course, you still need to pack a jumper for everyone for days when it is very cold.


STAYING DRY

It is important not to forget items like umbrellas, waterproofs and wellies for the kids. That way you can still get out and enjoy a walk even if it rains all day.


PLAN SOME INDOOR ACTIVITIES

You need to plan to enjoy plenty of indoor activities. Even if the weather is not bad, the days are shorter, so at least part of each day is going to be spent inside.


BE FLEXIBLE

It is important to be as flexible as possible. Try not to promise you are going to do certain things. The kids will be really disappointed if the attraction you are planning to visit ends up having to close because of bad weather. Before you book, do plenty of research. Going the extra mile and checking the winter opening hours of local attractions will stop you from booking a holiday somewhere there is not enough to do to keep everyone occupied.



PACK ENOUGH ITEMS TO KEEP THE CHILDREN ENTERTAINED

Packing the right toys is key to keeping the children properly entertained. Be sure to take a few of their current favourites and what you need for rainy day activities. This article contains some great ideas for keeping young children happy on days when it is too wet to go outside much. If you read it before you pack, you will be able to add a few items to your list and be properly prepared.

Hayley x



*PR Collaboration