Introducing Baby Lit: Classical Counting and Colour Primer Board Books for Babies!

 Every once in a while I'm asked to review something rather special, something which I look at and think to myself, "Wow, that is a very good idea indeed!" This is exactly how I feel about Baby Lit books, a range of nine colour and counting primer board books based on famous works of classical literature but aimed at babies and young children.

As a literature graduate and English teacher maybe I'm biased, but if so I make absolutely no apology for it!

I truly think Baby Lit is a lovely and very original idea. Take a great piece of literature, one that has withstood the test of time, and turn it into something unique for little ones to enjoy. That has got to be a recipe for success. Not only is it a thoughtful way of introducing children to some of your own favourite works of literature, but it is also a very individual method of bringing colours and numbers into their lives too.

Having studied and throughly enjoyed Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet and Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre at university, I was more than thrilled to review the two Baby Lit books based on these original classics, namely Little Master Shakespeare: Romeo & Juliet and Little Miss Bronte: Jane Eyre!

My youngest daughter is just 17 months so I was excited to introduce her to these very beautiful and stylish books. In fact, I must confess, I don't think I'll be leaving her alone with them any time soon as I might just want to display them as pieces of art on my old dresser later on!

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Gumigem - Fashionable Baby Proof Teething Jewellery for Babies and their Mummys!

 

Gumigem teethers
Miller Heart Pendant, a piece of Gumigem teething jewellery

When I'm breastfeeding my 17 month old daughter she loves to play with my chain and cross. She twists and turns it between her fingers and rather remarkably, is very gentle with it, just as her three siblings were.

However, I often fret that one of these days it's going to just snap. She's also been teething a lot lately and now has almost all her front teeth plus four great big back teeth. As many mums know, teething equals chewing and for Sophia this means chewing on almost anything she can lay her little teeth on. She has even chewed lumps out of books that the other children had cherished from their baby days!

Oh yes, we have teethers galore in our house but the problem is I can never find one when needed so, for me, the chance to review a piece of award winning teething jewellery, namely the Gumigem teething necklace, made in Dundee, Scotland, couldn't have come at a better time. Imagine, a teether that looks like a trendy necklace so always on hand but which looks the part when out and about with baby! Perfect :)

Designed by a fellow mummy, Jenny McLaughlan, the Gumigem baby proof mummy jewellery teethers were her lightbulb moment. Trying to soothe her own son who struggled with teething and chewed everything in sight, Jenny decided it was time to design a teether which doubled as a stylish piece of jewellery. So successful has she been that she now has many celebrities including Coleen Rooney, Sienna Miller and Jenny Falconer, wearing and raving about her product.

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The Snugg iPad 4 Executive Case Cover and Flip Stand - Stylish and Functional Protection for Your iPad

The Snugg iPad 4 Case has arrived and I've been fortunate enough to test it out.

Now before I go on, I must admit, I've been having a bit of trouble choosing a cover for my iPad 3, the reason being there are so many on the market to choose from. Being very indecisive by nature I simply haven't been able to make up my mind which to go for.

One thing I was sure of though was that I certainly didn't want to purchase an Apple iPad Smart Cover.

Why ever not, you may ask?

Well, having bought the Apple Smart Cover for my husband's iPad 2 I was reluctant to fork out again for a product which we felt was overpriced for what it offers and not very successful at the half job it does - it is forever falling off and doesn't afford any protection whatsoever to the back of the iPad. Therefore, for me there was no indecision here - if I did ever get around to choosing a case for mine, it would be one of those that offer full front and back protection without losing any functionality.

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Christmas is Coming, Ready or Not!

IMG_4462It's hard to believe that it's almost Christmas once again and that ready or not we'll all be procrastinating about what to buy for whom over the next few weeks! Actually, I'm doing pretty well this year and have almost all my presents either bought or ordered so I must admit to feeling a lot less stressed than I normally would by this point in time!

With Christmas just around the corner, I'm noticing even the early mornings are starting to feel quite magical right now. Looking out this morning at 7am there was a lovely clear dark blue sky with a few stars sparkling and lots of glittering frost gathered on the grass and car windows! For me, this is when the build up really begins.

Of course, this year many people are feeling the financial bite more acutely than in recent years and we're all cutting back in one way or another. Christmas is always notoriously expensive and most of us get caught up in the atmosphere leading to overspending and then the worry about what it was that was so important to purchase that it ate into January's pay-cheque! 

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Emily Evans Mother Brilliant Bust Cream - A Bust Firming Cream for Mothers to Be and Breastfeeding Mothers

Emily Evans Brilliant Bust CreamNormally, when breastfeeding, I don't like to use body lotions and potions for a couple of reasons. Firstly, I worry that the ingredients may not be all that good for my baby and secondly, I worry that they won't taste very pleasant for her.

However, when I was asked to try Emily Evans Mother Brilliant Bust Cream, a new bust firming cream by mother of three and founder of maternity boutique 9 London, I was interested, not least because the formula contains a special blend of the natural ingredients centella and borage oil which help tone and tighten the bust, but also because, let's face it, after having four babies I feel like I could do with a little help in the bust firming area!

Now, before I go any further, let me make it very clear that breastfeeding in itself does not cause your breasts to become less firm. Many people will try to tell you otherwise, but the fact of the matter is that it is pregnancy that causes the damage! Now that I've cleared that up for everyone, let me continue...

Emily Evans bust firming cream arrived at my door in the most delightful manner, all packaged in a lovely big Harrod's box making me feel very special from the get go!

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Guys and Dolls - Sales of new Oobicoo soft toy Ollie outstrip Orla 2:1

Boys’ dolls are selling twice as fast as girls’ dolls according to Totseat founder Rachel Jones, who believes the media have been integral in helping to break down gender stereotypes.

The UK toy industry is worth £2.96bn and since launching the soft toy tots Ollie and Orla last year, multi award winning entrepreneur Rachel Jones has sold twice as many of the boy ‘doll’ Ollie. Sales of boys’ toys take 55% share of the UK toy market and Rachel believes sales of Oobicoo Ollie reflect society’s changing perceptions of traditional gender stereotypes.

Rachel says, “We live in a culture where many people look to the media as a guide to behavior and as a result many people conform to majority norms. Traditionally girls have been expected to play with dolls and wear pink and many parents have discouraged their sons from playing with dolls per se, however there appears to be a shift in this gender stereotyping which can only be a good thing.”

Oobicoo was originally developed and sold as a mannequin to display the multi-award winning Totseat; a safe, portable, fabric highchair for families travelling with babies. Rachel soon realised their appeal when they became the unlikely classmates of her daughter Freya and her friends, who loved the fact that they were so big and cuddly!

The adorable, soft toy tot Oobicoo is made from gorgeous soft plush fabric and, at 60cm tall, is the same size as a six month old baby - the perfect size to be an instant baby brother, sister or best friend. They come in their own wee fabric 'pod' and are designed to be dressed in hand-me-down-baby clothes. This simple idea not only saves money, it encourages the reuse of outgrown baby clothes, teaches children dexterity and provides Oobicoo with an instant wardrobe.

With sound eco credentials, Oobicoo is filled with recycled polymer, manufactured from recycleable fabric and is raising money for the Children's Immunology Fund - £1 from every sale goes to the charity. Oobicoo even has its very own dance tune, penned by Emily Philips and Josh Wilkinson who co-write for pop superstars One Direction and Alexandra Burke!

Rachel added, “Oobicoo not only helps your child’s development, they are perfect for imaginative play, great for teaching dexterity in terms of dressing and undressing and because of their realistic size, they give children someone to cuddle!

“We are delighted to announce the launch of Olwyn, our fourth soft toy tot, who has a different skin tone to the other Oobicoo tots. We are keen to encourage diversity and since launching Oobicoo Ed last year, who is entirely bald, we have had great reactions to the entire Oobicoo family.”


BabyCam Car - The Safe Way To Monitor Your Baby When Driving (Product Review)

BabyCam CarI think I've just found one of my very favourite review products - BabyCam Car, a Storage Options baby monitoring system for use in the car (or home). It's a simple idea, but one which makes life so much easier for the parents of young babies and small children.

The product is made up of two parts: a little wireless camera and a little wireless screen! The camera is attached by a suction cup to a window in the rear of the car. The camera is then pointed at the child you wish to monitor and live video is transmitted to a small companion screen also attached by suction cup to your car windscreen - similar to satnav. This enables you to keep a close eye on your child whilst driving without the need to turn around and potentially lose control of your car in the process. The product has an automatic day and night function mode, both of which show extremely clear images of the child being watched. There is also a volume control wheel which can be used if necessary. The device is powered with built in rechargeable batteries and is easily charged via your vehicle's cigarette lighter. Each charge lasts around 4 hours.

 

On my first attempt at trying BabyCam Car I was naturally a little wary of the product in case it became distracting. However, I very quickly found that this wasn't the case. In fact, I actually found that when using BabyCam Car I tended to look at the camera only whilst sitting at traffic lights or when parked.

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Fairy Princess Play Tent - A Perfect Gift for Aspiring Fairies and Princesses (Product Review)


Fairy Princess Play TentWith Christmas just a matter of weeks away, it's time for many of us busy mums and dads to start thinking about perfect gifts for the small people we share our lives with. Having just one week ago given birth to my fourth baby, a little girl to join our other two daughters and son, I'm personally up to my eyes at the moment trying to get things just right.

In our house you can imagine that over the years we've acquired many dressing up costumes for hours of imaginative play, but it's amazing how fast time goes and how much you miss having a tiny tot tottering around in plastic heels, wearing a beautiful Princess gown or Fairy wings. With this in mind and with my new baby girl just starting her journey, I was very keen to review the most wonderful Fairy Princess Play Tent sold by Playhouses.co.uk that I'm convinced any aspiring Fairy or Princess would absolutely love.

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Product Review: Sequin Kitten Heel Mules at Pink Heaven

Sequin-mules As the mother of two beautiful daughters (and one son!) you might expect our house to be overcome with pink glittery things. Well, not quite as only one of my daughters has ever expressed an interest in the girly side of life and personally I've always been more of a tomboy myself - even as a child...

However, all is not lost since my second daughter is on a one girl quest to bring all things pink and shiny into our home!

She loves dolls, make-up, sparkly nail polish, fancy hairstyles, pretty clothes - you get the idea! So when online store Pink Heaven asked me if I'd be interested in reviewing a product from their fabulous range of pink products I had no hesitation in requesting the most adorable sequin kitten heel mules for my little princess, Sarah!

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Product Review: Babyroyale Luxury Baby Blanket

Babyroyale baby blanket Perhaps one of the most memorable moments after giving birth is when the baby is carefully passed over to the exhausted but exhilarated new mother. I know it was that way for me and whilst initially my babies were bare and snuggled close to my body, after that first cuddle and bonding time, I was happy to hand them back to be dressed in a babygro and then presented to me wrapped in a baby blanket looking and smelling wonderful.

Prior to each of their births, I remember packing each of my babies bags with great care, making sure to include a small fresh blanket for each. However, those little blankets were not the best quality and it was only in hindsight that I realised my babies had been wrapped in horrible acrylic blankets which really didn't allow air to circulate very well or cater to their tender skin.

However, since those very blankets were widely sold, I didn't think to look further afield.

How things change...

It was with delight that I received the most gorgeous little Babyroyale luxury baby blanket for review just a few days ago. Immediately upon opening the package I was impressed not just by the softness of the blanket but by the look and size of it too.

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