Sunday, 4 September 2011

I have moved!

As from today I am leaving my beloved blogspot to become self hosted! If you would like to have a nosey at my new home please come and say hello at www.mummyandthebeastie.co.uk

See you there!!

Friday, 19 August 2011

Potties and willies

We are at that stage where I would say we are on the 'cusp' of potty training. Beastie will be two and a half next month and so far everywhere I have read it states that this is around the age you can expect a boy to be ready.  Now it's a always an interesting one, I hate to go by what people call the norm and I know that all children develop in their own ways.

Where Beastie was super quick at rolling over, sitting up and being confident on his feet, he is still getting there with his speech and the latest being the potty issue. Not that I have made it an issue (by the way) as I know that is a massive no no, what I have noticed is how people are starting to comment. I have from time to time throughout Beastie's life become sensitive over people's comments on various milestones and I actually avoid parents now that constantly compare. Why can't they just be happy with their child's progress rather than trying to compete? no one likes bragging and those sorts of people never take it well when their child may be the one lagging behind.

So a long while back I began to prepare for the impending training and bought a potty and rather hastily I might add, some really cute pants. The potty was placed in the bathroom and was generally greeted with much disgust, we had a few occasions where it was sat on but more often than not it was kicked away.

It soon became apparent that the toilet was in fact what Beastie referred to as the potty and soon enough I bought a children's training seat and a book called Potty Training for Boys. I started to read this book yesterday and instantly thought it doable with the fact you don't need to set aside a few days to stay indoors. The book claims to offer step by step guidance through the next few weeks, geared more towards working Mums who can't take a few days off to dedicate themselves fully to the training. It reads well and I will stick with it for now although there are some statements that have annoyed me already...yes we're calling it a willy.

I have been careful not to rush Beastie and bow to pressure from other people, I do firmly believe that forcing the issue will make matters more difficult and that choosing the right time is crucial. This is the part that worries me. Last week the nursery manager casually came up to me to ask 'we were wondering what was happening with potty training?'. To which I flatly told her he was not ready yet. I was slightly irked that she had asked in the way she had, as they so often do with matters, as well as feeling that when the training does start that I would have the sense to mention it them. She also didn't confirm any particular cues that had brought her to this conclusion.

I have written before about the nursery manager and her ways of dealing with situations, she tries to be tactful but always manages to come across the opposite. Yesterday I was particularly amused when a parent walked into the nursery after me and said to her 'it always stinks of poo when you walk in!'. It doesn't in my opinion but I really wished it was me that had said it, she simply didn't know what to say and I could see it ruffled her feathers.

The potty has been relegated to the airing cupboard, it gathers less dust there. As for the toilet seat, I give it the thumbs up. Beastie has accomplished putting it on the loo, pulling up his little step and hopping on, dangling his legs for a while before putting them all back where they started from. I realise I need a lot of patience here and will need to wait for a present in the toilet, we just never seem to get one. Just confirmation it's squished up his backside and obvious squatting accompanied with denial. To all of you that have finished your training or are in the process, we are about to jump on board...wish us luck.




Tuesday, 16 August 2011

Listography - Guilty Pleasures

It's been a long while since I have joined in with this linky from Kate Takes Five, mainly due to the fact I have been absent from my blog and twitter! So this weeks topic seemed appealing and after staring at the wall pondering for a while I have come up with my list of guilty pleasures...

1. One Tree Hill



I have watched this series since the beginning and years later it is still running. I am not sure what I will do when they finally decide to axe it because the characters are getting a bit too old! My husband used to moan at me for watching it and is now converted, hooked in fact and is the first one to suggest we watch an episode. That is his biggest guilty pleasure, I'm a girl and can get away with it.


2. The Only Way is Essex (TOWIE)


Now this has been a recent one as it hasn't been around so long. It's car crash tv and reality tv at it's best/worst. I initially boycotted the series, not understanding what all the fuss was about until I eventually succumbed and the rest is history. With this show you can just indulge yourself in the fact you don't have to really think and their shenanigans are always likely to make you snigger. The fact they all giggle when arguing because they are on camera is funny enough for me! This is the flip side One Tree Hill where people are mainly do gooders and have morals. I have posted about it before here.


3.  Burger King Bacon Double Cheeseburger



Now I am not a major fan of fast food and I would say I rarely have it. However whenever I do go somewhere with a Burger King (as my town doesn't have one) I always want to get a bacon double cheeseburger *mmmm*. Even when I eat one and think, every time, that the cheese takes like the plastic film in comes packaged in, I still enjoy it. Luckily for my figure we don't pass one too often.

4. Hot baths

Now I wish this was my bath, sadly it's not

I am a shower person mainly but when I have a bath I like it piping hot. Usually I will want a bath when I have aches and pains so the hotter the better. A bath is not a proper bath to me without it being a struggle to get into. I know it's not good for me when my skin goes bright pink and occasionally I have been known to go and have a lie down afterwards. Self inflicted I know...

5. Browsing in bookshops



Now this one took me ages to think up, ages. I was thinking through all the foods I like and anything else that might interest me, if I am ever lucky enough to have the time...then I remember bookshops. Time permitting (and preferably) alone I could happily browse around looking at all the books I might like to buy, in some dreamworld where a) I have the money and b) I have the time to read them. I love the smell of new books and the guilty aspect is I feel so cheeky when I stand looking at a book for more than a few moments without buying it. Silly I know as countless people do it.

See what everyone else's guilty pleasures are over at Kate Takes Five...


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Monday, 15 August 2011

VTech InnoTab Launch

Last week I was given the opportunity to attend the launch of VTech's latest gadget, the InnoTab, dubbed the 'new iPad for kids'. I thought this new release would be a fantastic replacement in the quest for winning back our iPad. Considering it has been adopted by Beastie and you might agree, is a rather expensive toy for a 2 year to monopolise because of his obsession with Mr Tumble. What is great about the InnoTab is that as well as entertaining our little ones it is designed to teach them at the same time and provide developmental benefits.

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Aimed at 4-9 year olds the InnoTab is a multi-media learning handheld combining educational games, creative activities and e-books on a multi-functional touch screen tablet. Children can develop core skills in reading, spelling, maths, logic and creativity with the many included activities such as an e-reader, art studio, interactive globe, video player and photo viewer. The Kidizoom from VTech is compatible with the tablet which is a great feature for budding photographers. It features a 5 inch LCD touch screen and g-sensor for fun game play. Parents can also download additional games and learning apps from their computer to add to the tablet.

The event was held at the lovely Covent Garden Hotel and I got the chance to meet up with some fellow bloggers such as Not Yet a Yummy Mummy, Multiple Mummy, Mummy..Mummy..Mum!, Seasider in the City, Super Amazing Mum and Bloggomy, all of whom I have met before and some of them a few times now. It was great to finally meet the woman behind The Crazy Kitchen, she's just as you would imagine! That's good Helen, by the way.

When we arrived we were treated to drinks and a lovely lunch of delicious canap├ęs followed by chocolate brownies. Then it was into the red leather seated screening room to see what the Innotab had to offer with a  live demonstration and then a change to ask further questions about the function of the tablet such as the battery life and the colours available, as we all know this is important to children! The range currently has blue rubber edges but you will be able to purchase pink ones from Argos in September.


The demonstration

Answering any questions

Hanna showing her Mum (The Crazy Kitchen) how to work it

Helen (The Crazy Kitchen) looking very animated...

Kerry (Multiple Mummy) having a go

A very helpful 9 year old boy showing us all how it works

Emma having a go



The retails price for the InnoTab is £79.99. You can purchase Apps online from £2.99 and also software cartridges for £24.99 with some very popular characters, as shown below.

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It requires 4 x AA batteries (so rechargeable would be best here) and you can also buy an AC adaptor to power it as well as in car adapters.

It was a great day out in London and a fantastic opportunity to see the prototype and I can't wait for Beastie to finally get a go himself!

Wednesday, 10 August 2011

The Gallery - Water

I love Water, maybe as my star sign is Cancer and I am naturally supposed to be a water baby. I do however have my fears in the sea, being out too deep, worrying about what lies beneath and what might grab me but I still go in all the same and have braved some situations in the sea. This jellyfish was one of hundreds when snorkelling in the sea in Egypt. I was very brave and calm...




I have a few pictures that sum up what I love about water, that it can be great fun. This was my first holiday with my husband (then boyfriend) and his first meeting with my parents! It turned out to be a fantastic holiday and one where we enjoyed lots of laughs.









Unfortunately I don't have a photo of my Mum enduring her ride in the ring down several slides. We were so amazed that we managed to convince her to have a go 'as it would be fun' that we didn't stop to think that she might end up traumatised by it. She had an awful time, almost falling through the ring several times and randomly grabbing at strangers. It was so funny though, sorry Mum!

The funniest part of the day however was when my Dad suddenly felt he was too old to go round a water park when we were about to pay at the entrance. So after being unable to persuade them, my husband and I went to go and get changed. We were really put out and disappointed in them only to be surprised when they suddenly appeared by our lockers with beaming smiles. They had had a change of heart and the woman behind the kiosk had given them the pensioner rate which was substantially less than we had paid. Never mind the fact they weren't old enough to qualify and had felt too old just moments before, it's amazing what a discount can do!

You can take a look at all the other entries over at Sticky Fingers...


Sunday, 7 August 2011

Saturday, 6 August 2011

Play Day in Richmond Park





On Wednesday I had the pleasure in attending one of the National Play Days sponsored by Savlon and hosted by Donna from Not Yet a Yummy Mummy. Donna organised the day perfectly, even though she will deny this and it was lovely to meet up with a couple of her friends along with Bianca from Richmond Mummy and Sarah from Sarah's Superfluous Thoughts. We couldn't have asked for a more glorious day and having never visited Richmond Park before I was amazed by the sheer size and beauty of it. What a wonderful part of the country it is to live in and even more so when you live close by (like Donna and Bianca).

I blogged previously about the Play Day here and we basically wanted to just have some outdoor fun with our children. The children had various toys to keep them amused including a tent and tunnel, a ball pit, balls, a dolls buggy (a massive hit), various inflatable toys, crayons and most importantly each other! They happily played with all that was provided but what was lovely to see was how they all played in harmony and were happy to just wander round looking at the surroundings. We were also quite set back from the adjacent road so it was an extremely safe environment for them.

We all enjoyed a picnic lunch whilst enjoying the great outdoors. We all discussed how easy it is for people to visit their local park and make use of the amenities. The parking in Richmond Park is free and that makes it perfect for a low cost family day out. There are so many places you visit nowadays that charge extortionate rates, making family fun that little bit harder to achieve. They say the best things in life are free and I have to agree. It has certainly encouraged me to make the most of the great outdoors this summer and enjoy what nature has to offer.

Here are a few pictures rounding up the day, I was shattered when I eventually got home (mainly due to the heat) but it was a great day and I came home armed with lots of Savlon goodies!


Not Yet a Yummy Mummy showing off her bump whilst using her new Flipcam


Richmond Mummy and her beautiful daughter

Beastie enjoying the ball pit

William and Beastie - Firm friends on their first meeting

The 'bag' we all wanted from Pink Lining

Part of the many wildlife roaming around

Time out in the tent 'just us boys