Mother’s Day Gift Ideas

Crabtree and Evelyn Gift SetWith Mother’s Day just a few weeks away, Laura Mason aka Laura Loves, has come up with some great Mother’s Day Gift Ideas for us and you…….

Mother’s Day is an opportune time to show just how much you appreciate the mother figures in your life.  While recognition doesn’t just need to be limited to the one special day, I personally take the occasion to make my mum feel special.  Take a look at some of the following gifts that I think would be lovely presents for mummies-to-be, mothers or girlfriends….

Mum's NotesThe Mum’s Notes journal is a stunning book available in a blackberry, raspberry, silver or peppermint shade with reptile-effect hardback cover.  This striking journal is carefully designed to record thoughts, daydreams, inspirations, words to remember, you name it.  A great keepsake for treasured memories.  Priced £12.95 from www.mumsoffice.co.uk

Because mothers are the often the queen of hearts, the sentiment of Whittard’s Queen of Hearts biscuits is a genuinely adorable gift from one to another.  At just a fiver it’s a great gift for children to spend their pocket money.  Priced £5 from Whittards.

Protecting your phone is a key necessity whatever your kids or your age.  Proporta recently released the Ted Baker Audio SS15 Ted Baker iPhone Covercollection, meaning an iPad and iPhone can look stylish in a funky new case wile having the practicality of leaving it safe and protected from little hands.  Prices start from £24.95 from www.proporta.co.uk

Photobox has so many customisable gifts featuring images of your choice.  The personalised ‘Mum Book’ is an amazing gift that can bring to life the thanks for all the wonderful things they do.  It’s simple to do and can be treasured forever.  The books start from £16.99 with a range of finishes from www.photobox.co.uk

Foot SpaGive mum’s feet a break with the Elle Macpherson Aromatherapy Foot Spa.  Mood boosting LED lighting along with aromatherapy mist and oils make this the ultimate luxury when it comes to foot therapy. The innovative design allows for both integrated hydro and vibration massagers and acu-pressure nodes that stimulate reflexology points.  Priced £74.99 from Amazon.co.uk

For a Mother’s Day gift with a difference the Lumie Bodyclock Starter could be the best gift a mum will ever receive!  It is a clever clock that helps sleep deprived mums to get back into a regular sleeping routine with the introduction to waking with light.  It’s a medical device clinically proven to promote a better sleep Photobox Photobookso once baby is in a routine it should improve mum’s sleep quality allowing her to wake brighter and feel more energised and productive throughout the day.  Priced £59.95 from www.lumie.com

For time out for a new mum at home, the MamaBabyBliss Pamperng Gift Bag contains a few small essentials to help restore some inner peace.  The set comes with ‘Ooh…’ – a lush healing bath soak, ‘Bliss Stick…Uplifting Oil’ designed to give mums an instant boost, ‘Aaah…Soothing Mummy Baby Balm’, a natural rescue balm for mum and baby and a little book of hints and tips to help relax.  Priced £22.50 from www.mamababybliss.com

Many parents will be able to relate to the ever so popular Peppa Pig TV programme.   The good news is the merchandise doesn’t stop at little ones and with a wide range of Mummy Pig gifts you Best Mum Hamperare spoilt for choice.  The Mummy Pig ‘Mum in a Million’ Socks are a nice discreet nod to the pig family!  Priced a great value £2.50 from Asda.

For a thoughtful gift of the chocolate variety the Best Mum Chocolate Hamper from Bath chocolatiers, Choc on Choc, is a must. This decadent hamper features a selection of finest Belgium boxes of chocolate including a ‘Best Mum’ pack as well as a selection of strawberry champagne truffles and the brand’s best-selling flower, cupcake and vintage teacup designs.  Priced £24 from www.choconchoc.co.uk

The Rose Tree Organic Relaxing Gift Set is a beautifully presented gift in a stunning box containing an organic hand poured candle and a bath treatment oil.  The brand specialises in luxurious all natural skincare products jam-packed with nurturing vitamins.   The luxury candles are made from 100% pure vegetable Rose Tree Organic Gift Setwax and are scented with pure essential oils and the uber indulgent bath treatment oil leaves skin subtly scented and silky soft, made with 98% organic ingredients.   The set is priced £50 from www.therosetree.co.uk

There’s something special about personalising a gift so for a wide range of jewellery Love Silver has a choice of silver and gold items including pendants, key rings, initials, bracelets that can be adapted by their tem of craftsmen with a name or special message.  Prices start from £9.99 from www.lovesilver.com

For anyone that craves some organisation within their crazy lives, British designer Victoria Green has some fabulous bags bursting with compartments and practical features.  The Love Hearts Traveller bag features vibrant red hearts for mums to wear with pride and comes with two roomy compartments, one for mum’s stuff and another for their child’s.  Priced £14.99 from Debenhams.

Being a mother is a celebration every day so share a toast with a glass of the finest Laurent-Perrier Cuvée Rosé Champagne.  This delicious rosé is produced under a meticulous process called maceration, whereby it is aged for at least four years in the LaLaurent Perrier Cuvee Roseurent-Perrier cellars, creating a mature and fine Champagne.  Priced £42 from www.31DOVER.com

Sometime as a mum you struggle to get out the house for your weekly shop let alone your nails so a nice DIY pick me up is the Rokit Gel Polish Professional Kit.  The gel manicure kit provides a salon quality without the effort with a one step process to ensure shiny nails that last up to 14 days.  Priced £99.99 from Debenhams.

A really lovely gift is the new Crabtree and Evelyn Pear & Pink Magnolia Luxury Fragrance Gift Set.  This indulgent gift offers a selection of travel-sized fruity and floral fragrance Pear & Pink Magnolia treats, perfect for a pampering.  Priced 25 from Crabtree & Evelyn.

by
Mum to 2 Under 3 and just finished maternity leave, Laura is a journalist and Mum. She enjoys reviewing products with her children, exploring new trends and more importantly, life as a mummy. ‘Continuously trying to get a ‘grip’ of motherhood and back to a size 10!’

Returning To Work After Having A Baby

mother and babyReturning to work after having a baby brings with it an abundance of feelings.  An emotional cocktail of excitement, liberation and energy merged with feelings of anxiety, exhaustion, guilt and fear!  You still want a career but you need flexibility; everything has changed, someone new has entered your life and frankly, they come first.

The truth is, change can be scary; but it is vital to remind yourself that the physical, mental and emotional change your body has gone through doesn’t suddenly mean that you have lost your motivation, capability and career experience. Quite the reverse, your motivation as a working mother is arguably stronger than before because you have made the conscious choice to combine motherhood with a career.

Becoming a mother is the most natural and important job on the planet.  But mothers and employers need to appreciate that they have, and are gaining skills respectively, they have not lost them.  Becoming a mother means that you are now richer and more Mum drinking coffeefulfilled as an individual and many of the skills you have developed in becoming a mother and those you will gain as you continue in your motherhood journey, can be effectively translated to the work place which is great news for your employer too.

There is clearly a great deal of dedication and commitment from mothers who want to work, they have made a conscious decision to juggle a career with their home life (whether that means working part-time or more flexibly) and they will put their life and soul into making that work.

But it does mean that you need to be really organised if you want to blend your home and work life together in a manageable way. Try breaking your day down into focused blocks of time.  Split these chunks of time into things you need to do for your career and those you need to focus your energies on as a ‘mother’.  It’s all about finding a way that works for you and your family.

What is fundamental when you are juggling work and motherhood is that your home is running smoothly.  So if you have taken time off to have a child don’t leave it to the last minute to sort out your childcare, instead make that investment and get those arrangements made at least two weeks before you return to work so that both you and your child are established in your new routine. That way you won’t return to work with a heavy heart but with one full of enthusiasm, safe in the knowledge that you are leaving behind a happy home.

By

Juliet Turnbull from 2to3days.com

 

Win Family Ticket to VIP Premiere of Peppa Pig’s ‘The Golden Boots’

For the first time EVER, Peppa Pig is heading onto the big screen for a whole hour of Peppa fun! Guaranteed to entertain the whole family throughout February half-term, fans can enjoy the first ever Peppa special episode ‘The Golden Boots’ alongside favourite ‘Peppasodes’ and lots of on-screen entertainment, including singing and dancing from Channel 5’s Milkshake! presenters.

Join Peppa and follow her quest across land, sea, and even into space to find her missing golden boots before the big Puddle Jump Competition! Will she find them?  Book your tickets to find out!

The Golden Boots

The Golden Boots Peppa Pig logoThis amazing Peppa Pig cinema experience will debut in Odeon, Vue, Empire, Cineworld, Showcase and Picturehouse cinemas across the country during February half term week (from February 14th). For more information and to book advance tickets, please visit the official Peppa Pig facebook page, www.facebook.com/OfficialPeppaPigUK

To celebrate Peppa’s big screen debut, we’re giving one lucky family the chance to attend the special premiere of the ‘The Golden Boots’ cinema experience. The event will be held at Odeon Leicester Square London on Sunday 1st February 2015 where there will be a pink carpet, costume characters and live entertainment from the Milkshake! presenters.

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T&C’s :

The promoter of this competition is Entertainment One  

The prize is Family Ticket (2 adults and 2 children) to the premiere event of Peppa Pig’s ‘The Golden Boots’ at the Odeon Leicester Square in London

Tickets/prizes are non-transferable

Tickets to be collected at venue

The prize does not include any travel, accommodation or any additional expenses

Buyagift.com Surprise Some Christmas Heroes

What better way to say thank you to one of your heroes than by a special gift delivered straight to their door.

November saw the launch of the Buyagift.com Surprise Surprise campaign, where customers are given a chance to nominate someone who they thought is deserving of a special treat.  This could be for anything from charitable work, staying positive through adversary or even going the extra mile to help others.

The video shows three of the nominated heroes: David Witherington, who was nominated by his daughter-in-law for all the hard work he does volunteering for the Red Cross; Joel Collins, who was nominated by his Mum Alison for his strength in dealing with his diabetes and finally Linzi Gunter, who was nominated by her friend Sarah for for going above and beyond for her as a friend, despite having been through some very difficult times.Buyagift.com Logo

Dan Mountain, CEO of Buyagift.com says:

“At Buyagift our aim is to create amazing memories with the gift experiences we provide, and we wanted to give our customers the chance to give something back to someone they know- the unsung heroes, the people that go the extra mile for others without a second thought and people that deserve a treat, by giving them a gift experience that will create special memories as a token of appreciation that others feel for them.

We were truly overwhelmed with the number of nominations we had and we know there are so many people out there that deserve some recognition for what they have been through or what they do for others, and if we can help provide that moment of happiness for them with one of our experiences, we are proud to help.”

This is a sponsored post for Buyagift.com

The Nut Job

The Nut JobI think I work pretty damned hard with my kids but I’m always looking for a great reason to spend a portion of Sunday afternoon on the sofa. So with popcorn at the ready we curled up this week to watch The Nut Job dvd which is out on Monday 8th. It started brilliantly with some exciting and hilarious set-pieces and Harry felt an immediate connection with Surly Squirrel the main character. Along with his best mate Buddy, a silent 3 Stooges-type rat, he is banished from the park early doors and his subsequent search for food leads finally to his reformation and salvation for his erstwhile banishers. There are some great slapstick moments, starting with the opening scene where Surly, Buddy, Grayson (a wannabe hero) and Andie (the pretty female squirrel who knows that Surly really has a heart of gold) all set the plot in motion.

There’s flatulence along the way, a surprise baddy in the mould of Lotso from Toy Story 3 and some touching, self-sacrificing moments later on before closing credits which are delivered Gangnam Style! We loved the animal characters and although the human characters are not quite as interesting or as funny there’s a good connection between the two via Precious, a loveable mutt who bridges both worlds. At under 80 minutes this film rattles along and has some really fun laugh-out-loud scenes. The characters are memorable and I could easily see this spawning a sequel in a couple of years. If it does then I’m sure I’ll embrace the opportunity to spend another fun 80 minutes with my feet up on a wet Sunday with the kids giggling madly on either side. Great fun.

You can Win a Blu-ray of ‘The Nut Job’ Here!

Date Expectations

If you’ve ever wondered if when you were born has any impact on what you do with your life, then take a look at the fun infographic below. It would seem that budding J.K.Rowlings are more likely to be born in September and October.

Date Expectations
This fun ‘due dates’ infographic called Date Expectations was born during a coffee break in the BlossomMotherAndChild offices when they were chatting about babies’ due dates and noticed that quite a few famous people shared the same birthday. Did you know, for example, that Elvis has the same birthday as David Bowie? And Charles Darwin and Abraham Lincoln were also born on the same day!

Check it out – the more you look into it, the more fascinating it becomes!

 

Win a Personalised FROZEN Book

Personalised Frozen BookWe have a Personalised Frozen Book up for grabs in our latest Blog / Twitter Competition!

Frozen is huge and we all know it. There’s probably not a parent out there with children of a certain age who haven’t heard of Frozen. And the song ‘Let It Go’ is an ‘earworm‘ that refuses to go away!

So we know that lots of you will want to win this prize for your little Frozen fan!

PersonalisedBooks.co.uk who are providing the prize sell a variety of books all of which can be personalised throughout with names and other details. Whether it’s an educational book to help your child learn to spell or a fun Disney story, they’ll love seeing their names throughout the story.

personalised nursery rhymesWe all know that a good book will not only encourage your children to read but will make reading it with them much more fun. When a book is made personal and a child’s name appears throughout the story line and he/she is involved in the adventure, they will love to read it and it will become one of their favourite books.

So if you’d like to Win a Personalised Frozen Book from PersonalisedBooks.co.uk which will be personalised with your little one’s name, then Enter Below …..

 

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Personalised Word Art

personalised word art from Illustrate My NameI’m going to rave about something now and everyone is going to assume that this is a paid-for post, but it’s not – I promise you!

Illustrate My Name is a company I came across recently when looking for a unique piece of personalised word art for one of my children’s birthdays. I’d seen the company advertising personalised baby gifts and christening gifts and wondered if they covered all ages and all celebrations. Turns out they do – yay!

Illustrate My Name

In other words, you could be looking for a unique gift for a 21st birthday or a New Illustarte My Name personalised jarBaby, a Wedding or a Christmas present and you’d be able to find it at Illustrate My Name. Whatever you choose to have made, it will be very individual, tasteful and timeless and even more unbelievable it won’t break the bank. Or at least from my experience it won’t anyway.

Now I’m not going to share a pic of the framed print that I actually bought as the words and sentiments are very much my daughter’s and for her walls (her friends and family) only. Suffice to say, it’s perfect and she loves it! In fact her sisters love it personalised christmas cardsso much that they want one too so I can see that I’ll be returning to Illustrate My  Name regularly when I’m on the hunt for ‘different gifts’!

I love Illustrate My Name and can genuinely recommend them – great gifts, easy to order from, reasonable prices, excellent service and top quality results! What’s not to like?

What Makes Children So Messy?

children messy handsMud. Sand. Baked Beans. Paint. You name it – if it’s within easy reach and you’re not looking, chances are your little one will have it spread all over the place in seconds. That’s because little kids are inquisitive to learn and desperate to do things for themselves.

Kids want to touch, taste, smell, listen and look at everything and anything and their minds are expanding and developing at a rate of knots. Kids are hungry for information but they’re not exactly top of the class in hand-eye coordination, and their fear levels can be pretty non-existent at times. Which, besides making life extremely fun, can also make it incredibly messy. And, when you’re trying to keep up with everything else that life throws at you, this doesn’t always make for stress-free parenting. Still, there are things you can do to help limit the destruction and keep your house standing…

Isolate the fun

A happy kid is one who can run, jump, and let’s face it, be allowed to go a little bit crazy sometimes. A happy parent is one who doesn’t have to deal with the chaos of this happening all over the house. But going out all the time can be expensive, so if you’ve got a big enough space, it’s a great idea to ‘zone off’ an area of your house where the kids can have a little more freedom. Maybe that’s a section of the dining room, or it could be a patch of garden that you give them as their own. Whatever it is, if you’ve got a handle on it, keeping it contained will be much easier – and cleaning afterwards much quicker.

Get clean clever

According to an article by the Daily Mail, we spend nearly five hours every week cleaning our homes. That’s five hours that could be spent with our feet up, enjoyimessy children bakingng a good film, or indulging in a date night with our partner. We know which we’d prefer! So with this in mind, it makes total sense to get clean clever and invest in something that is versatile, practical, and that delivers outstanding results.

Steam cleaners seem to be the way to go and there are quite a few out there. The Karcher steam cleaner is one which makes light work of household chores. It delivers a deep-down clean that’s chemical-free and effortless. Using nothing but water it can get into all those nooks and crannies in your kitchens and bathrooms, blitzing grease and grime off tiles, and getting rid of everyday dirt from wood and stone floors.

messy child washingThis natty bit of kit is revolutionising the way we clean our homes because it makes the majority of other cleaning tools redundant. And it’s all down to steam that kills 99.9% of bacteria. So that makes it doubly-great in homes with children because not only does it get rid of those nasty germs, but it also uses no harmful chemicals, making it ideal for the allergy sufferers among us.

Plus, as any time-strapped parent knows, it’s all about cleaning quick and thoroughly, and steam cleaners (as put to the test by Mumsnetters) do just that.

One thing’s for sure, children are messy and there’s no changing that. It is, however, possible to change your cleaning habits and reclaim those five hours a week for yourself.

Hire Expectations – Maternity Wear Rental

Hire ExpectationsYou’re pregnant! Having a baby is a wonderful time in any woman’s life but it can also be a daunting time. Added to all the physical changes in your body is the problem what to wear for the last 6 months when the bump gets bigger! I absolutely understand that many of you don’t really want to spend a small fortune on specialised maternity clothes that only last for such a short time.

I would recommend a selection of items that are your ‘must haves’ for this time which you can easily pick up from any of our great high street stores. All the garments I have selected will keep you looking modern and fresh during your pregnancy;

How To Style Your Bump!

Remember one thing…..your body needs structure to give it shape, wearing baggy will only make the area appear larger than it is – it’s all about the shape & style.

  • Don’t shy away from bold colours & print when you are pregnant
  • Maxi dresses are super for any mum to be and will continue to work for you after the baby is born, use them for daytime and evening looks.
  • A longer length jacket will accommodate your bump. Any single breasted or boyfriend blazer jacket with a low cut neckline will give the illusion of a longer, slimmer body
  • The empire line will work brilliantly both in tops and dresses. It will be tight under the bust then drapes over your tummy
  • Do buy a couple of pieces with an elasticated waist – these will not only bring you comfort but will look super teamed with an empire line tunic

As an Award Winning Fashion stylist, I wanted to be able to take the worry away from pregnant ladies and offer them the opportunity to look amazing for occasions such as Birthdays, Christmas, Christenings and other major events……..Hire Expectations was born in May!

Hire Expectations is where you can rent both Maternity & Breastfeeding dresses perfect for special occasions! So why buy when you can rent?

  • Hire a dress for 5 or 10 days
  • Choose a back-up size for free
  • Dresses available in sizes 6 to 16
  • We take care of the cleaning

We stock fabulous brands such as Isabella Oliver, Keungzai, Crave, Butter by Nadia, Sweet Belly Couture and Picchu.

by

Lisa Talbot of www.hireexpectations.co.uk

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