Monday, 23 November 2015

Tips for a good nights sleep

Earlier this year we treated ourselves to a new mattress.  Our old mattress was 14 years old and had seen us through two pregnancies and lots of co-sleeping!  We spent a fair bit getting ourselves a new one but we knew it would be worth it.  Quality of sleep is so important, isn't it!  Especially as a parent.  Our nights are interrupted by the boys as it is so anything that helps improve what we do get is worth it.

Casper is a "sleep startup".  They have been around for about a year now and have created mattresses, pillows and bedding to help promote the best night sleep.  They shared their tips and solutions for a good night sleep with me and I thought I'd pass them on:

Now we have our new mattress, we are getting better sleep.  Our bed feels wonderful.  I have also recently made an effort to make sure that my phone is out of the way so I don't see the notification light flashing.  As for the kids coming in and waking us up.. no idea how to stop that one!

What do you do for a good nights sleep?

**This is not a sponsored post, I simply wanted to share the tips**

Friday, 20 November 2015

Why Canvas photo prints can be your best choice for your home

In collaboration with Juliet Halliwell

Canvas photo prints had been an important part of home decor for a long time now. A lot of factors make canvas photo prints an ideal choice for home decor. We consider a few of those factors here:

Image credit: The Canvas Prints

Canvas Photo Prints are an economical choice for home decor: 

Canvas Photo prints are economical and can be your best choice when you are on a tight budget. You can order any print you want on these canvases for a small price and enhance your decor. Replicas of your favorite art work can also be created on canvases with little cost. Ease of ordering online also adds up into making canvas photo prints a much more economical option for home decor. 

Canvas Photo Prints are easily customizable:

This customization feature makes canvas photo prints the best choice for home decor. You can customize canvas photo prints according to your taste, style and decor. This feature especially works best when you want to create a photo collage for your wall. All you need to do is to:

-Select your images
-Place them beautifully over one image through some photo editing software
-Add comments if you want 
-Get it all printed up on one single canvas. 

Idea: Collect all of your favorite wedding photographs in digital format on one base through a photo editing software. Add date along with funny comments you want to make. Order a canvas print of that image and give it as a gift on your wedding anniversary!

Canvas Photo Prints can be easily ordered:

Today you can easily order canvas photo prints online and they will be delivered to your house quickly. This not only makes it convenient but also allows us to order any print available online or any image that we have in digital format to be printed onto canvas.

Canvas Photo Prints can create a focus wall for any decor:

Canvas photo prints can be one of the best choices when it comes to decorating your house beautifully at low cost. You can either order canvas prints of different colors to match your decor or you can simply make a large collection of canvas images on the wall. You can create this focus wall with large and small framed canvases of different styles. There is no single rule of thumb when putting the images together but just a natural focus in the eye that can help create a balance on the wall that would make the photo prints look good altogether in a group. 

Canvas Photo Prints can be easily delivered on time: 

Canvas prints can be the best choice for any home or as a gift to your loved ones. They can be ordered online and get delivered at your friend’s doorstep for their birthday or any other occasion without any hassle. Simply order online for your own home or for friends and get the canvas gift delivered to their doorstep. 

Canvas Photo Prints are best for preserving memories:

Capture moments and make them live forever by getting them printed onto canvas. Relive those memories and enjoy :) 
Idea: Place all the memories of your kids on the wall of your living room as canvas photo prints. Enjoy looking at them as you and your kids grow.
Canvas Photo Prints offer durability and quality:

Canvas photo prints are durable and last a long time. They need very little extra care to keep them good. They will last for years to come if kept away from direct sunlight. 

Canvas Photo Prints are easy to clean and manage:

Canvas photo prints can be easily cleaned with a damp cloth and do not require too much care or time for cleaning. 

Canvas Photo Prints can be the best option for art lovers:

Collect art work of your favorite artist on your walls by these canvas photo prints. 
Idea: Convert your corridor or stair case wall into an art gallery with art work printed on canvas and enjoy. 

Canvas Photo Prints are best option for kids bedrooms:

You can convert your kid’s art work into a canvas print and let it last as a memory. All you need is to take a photograph of the art work and order its canvas print online. 
Idea: make an art gallery of your kids art work.
Idea: get your kids favorite cartoon or Disney princess onto canvas and give them a surprise this Christmas.

Felix styled by Felix

My boys are quite into their clothes.  Not all that surprising, really!  Mostly, I choose their clothes for them just to save time, especially on weekdays - well, Ethan has to wear school uniform, but for Felix.  It saves us time in the morning if I've chosen his outfit the night before.  However, this week, Felix picked his own clothes on Thursday morning and I think he did a lovely job!

Lucky, I'm not afraid to mix patterns at all.  Felix chose himself two items and they both happen to be from one of our favorite Insta shops, Shop Haute.  Shop Haute is one of the first kids clothing brands I found on Insta.  They are based in Hawaii, a WAHM brand.  The prices are great, the clothes are lovely, excellent quality.  We still love them two years on!

Shop Haute funky boys fashion kids fashion

Do your kids ever choose their own clothes?

Linking up with my kids fashion buddy Hannah for our linky Funky Kid Friday!

Wednesday, 18 November 2015

Changing your kids’ room for Christmas? Here are some top tips!

In collaboration with Lilly Thomson.

Winter is on the way and around the country, many parents will be starting to get their children's bedrooms ready for Christmas. Whether they are simply putting bunting up around their mirrors or introducing a full-on grotto into the house, mums and dads will be trying their best to build up the excitement for their children – especially those with really young kids. We take a look at some of the best ways you can change their bedroom to increases the excitement levels ahead of the festive period.

Use tinsel. Lots and lots of tinsel.

Tinsel is a brilliant, cheap way to decorate your child’s room ahead of the festive period. Not only does tinsel add plenty of colour to the room, it is also pleasing on the eye and can be shaped to fit around inanimate objects, such as mirrors, cots and television screens.Kids love tinsel and parents should use this to their advantage. Whether they are newly born or approaching their teenage years, children will play with anything shiny and attractive on the eye. It will certainly help them to feel as though Christmas is approaching!

Buy a new, Christmas-themed bed

You can buy your child a new bed and duvet set to further enhance the excitement ahead of Christmas. At this time of year, children are beginning to get more excited at the prospect of giving and receiving presents and an incredibly comfortable bed is an absolute must to ensure that they get plenty of sleep ahead of Christmas Day. There are a number of different beds available at Bedstar and you can get next day delivery on a new bed here. As well as the new bedframe, a new set of festive quilt and pillow covers will also help to raise the anticipation levels even more!

Go all out… build a grotto!

While this may affect the electricity bill, your children will LOVE this and is an absolute must for those willing to give their children the ultimate Christmas experience. In an ideal world, parents would be able to take their kids to Lapland, however that is not always plausible. With this idea, parents can build their own grotto and can even introduce their kids to Father Christmas! To truly appreciate Christmas, parents must go the extra mile to ensure that their kids enjoy the festival period. The homemade grotto is the perfect idea to enhance your child’s Christmas experience but they will also appreciate other, smaller gestures – such as dressing the room up with tinsel of buying a new, festive-themed bed. After all, the most important thing is that both parents and children enjoy the Christmas period!

Monday, 16 November 2015

Clothes Wishlists from Sammy Dress

Don't you love it when you stumble across a bargain site?  Sammydress is just that!  I must admit that the name of the site threw me a bit but they stock a bit of everything.  Not just clothes.  But let's face it, I love clothes over here, so I thought I'd put together a wishlist - one for the boys and one for me!

The Boys Wishlist:

1) Elephant jumper $7.19

Felix in particular loves Elephants so I was thinking of him when I picked this top.  It'd look brilliant paired with his elephant leggings from Fred & Noah.

2) Bear Christmas Jumper $12.69

Christmas jumpers!  I get the boys new ones every year.  At least one.  Sometimes more!  We're quite into festive wear in our house - even the hubby has a few Christmas jumpers.  The boys like to wear Christmassy clothing for the whole of December.  So do I actually.  This bear is cute, I think either or both of them would happily wear it - twinning is winning! 

3) Tribal print joggers $9.15

These joggers would go well with loads of tops the boys have.  Grey is a great colour.  Love the details as well.

4) Bird print gilet $14.13

Love the print on this gilet.  Unisex as well in my book.  Felix loves any animals and birds fascinate him so I chose this with him in mind.

My Wish List: 

1) Merry Christmas Home Alone Jumper $8.69

Home Alone is one of our favorite Christmas films.  If I'm honest, the boys ask to watch the Home Alone films all year long.  This is a line that we quote to each other all the time!

2) Lace Dress $10.99

There's something classic and Audrey Hepburn about this dress.  I'd love to wear it out over Christmas.  Maybe even Christmas Day at home.  I like to wear a dress on Christmas day.  I would say New Years Eve but let's face it, I'm not going out for NYE!!  Love the lace detailing and the neckline would be flattering!

3) Mama elephant jumper $5.99

If Felix is going to wear elephants, I should too, right?  I like the image on this one.  Mama and baby elephant.  It's so cute!

4) Cape Coat $13.31

Cape coats have been popular for a few seasons and I don't think they are going away.  They look great over big jumpers and you can get away with quite a few layers or thick jumpers under them.  I love the colour on this one, it'll go with everything.  They just look classic!

So, bargains galore, I'm sure you'll agree!  What would you pick?

Friday, 13 November 2015

Standing out from the crowd!

Don't you just love it when you order something online and it arrives less than 24 hours later!  Last week I wrote about Five Boys Clothing and the fantastic trousers I'd ordered from there.  Well, they arrived in int he post early Saturday morning and Ethan wanted to get them on straight away!

I've bought Boys & Girls clothing for quite a long time now.  In fact, they were one of my first blog sponsors!  Their clothes never disappoint.  These trousers certainly don't.  They look amazing on.  Ethan remarked on how soft they are.  They have pockets which he loves.  There's absolutely nothing negative you can say about them.  They are age 5-6 and Ethan is over 6 now so I suppose you could say they come up a big large.  But then Ethan is quite diddy.

Boys Unisex Fashion Boys and Girls Mini Rodini H&M Hot Sauce and Donuts

Boys Unisex Fashion Boys and Girls Mini Rodini H&M Hot Sauce and Donuts

Something else Ethan was rocking over the weekend was his brilliant bunny dungarees from Polish/Irish brand Famstyle.  I bought them a little while ago but they got a bit misplaced during our move so we only rediscovered them recently.  When I found them Ethan said "What are those cute clothes?  I want to wear them all weekend!".  Bless him.  He loves the cute bunny face.  I like that they are unisex and something a bit different.  Why shouldn't a boy wear a bunny?  He looked lovely and found them great for romping around in.

Famstyle Unisex kids fashion

Have you had a parcel turn up really quickly before?  I always find it exciting!

Funky Kid Friday

Hello and welcome to another Funky Kid Friday!  Wow.  Isn't it horrible out there?  I'm expecting some more wet and wintry fashions to be linked up today.  We got well and truly soaked on the school run this morning so now I'm wrapped up with my wheat bag, laptop & coffee!!

Thank you to everyone who linked up last week and of course my awesome co-host Hannah for hosting.  It was amazing to see 15 link ups last week.  Let's see if we can beat that today!  Would be fantastic.  Funky Kid has been my baby for years and it's nice to see it growing a bit!

With more posts linked up last week it's harder to pick a favourite but I have to say that I adore the Halloween costume Sana from Wave To Mummy linked up.  Sana has been linking up with me for a while now.  It's been lovely seeing her daughter (and her blog!) grow.  The Luke Skywalker outfit looked brilliant.  It's wonderful to see something a bit different being worn.  I especially love that it was worn last year too!  Fab :-)

Funky Kid Friday Kids Fashion

So.  That was last week.  Now on to this week!  Please link up your kids fashion posts below.  Don't forget our simple guidelines:

- Link up your kids fashion post/s below
- Comment on the hosts and at least one other post
- Display our badge (see sidebar)
- Tag us on Twitter - I'm @medicatedfollow and Hannah is @mamamakedopush.  We will retweet your posts.  Don't forget to use the tags #funkykidfriday and #FKF as well!
- The linky opens on Fridays and is live until the following Monday.

Have a lovely Friday everyone! X

Friday, 6 November 2015

Five Boys Clothing

I was struggling to think about what I was going to write about today for Funky Kid Friday because, in all honesty, I don't think the boys have worn anything this week that I've not featured before.  I've not even taken many photos!  However, I was online this morning browsing cool online store Five Boys Clothing and thought, hey, why not feature them!

I discovered Five Boys Clothing via Instagram.  That's where I discover most places these days!  They stood out to me because I have two boys.  It strikes me (not surprisingly) that most fashion and shops for kids are marketed towards girls and their mothers.  Obviously I prefer unisex fashion but I can't deny that I found it exciting to see a shop that's focus was cool clothing for boys.

LululZulu at Five Boys Clothing
Amazing hoodie from LululZulu at Five Boys Clothing £39.00

The reality is that Five Boys Clothing is very unisex.  They stock brands like The Bright Company, Boys & Girls and Gardner & The Gang so you could just as easily buy clothing for your girl from them.  It's a clever idea calling themselves Five Boys Clothing, though, because I think it'll encourage parents who are searching for "boys" clothes to broaden their horizons a bit.

Gardner & The Gang at Five Boys Clothing

I have to mention their sale section - it's pretty epic right now including some fantastic Tootsa Macginty items, some Gardner and Boys & Girls.  I just bagged a pair of those amazing harlequin harems for Ethan for £10!!

I think if you're a parent of boys you'll love this site.  You'll love it if you have girls too ;-)

I'm linking up with my co-host Hannah over at Make Do & Push for Funky Kid Friday today.  Go check it out and join in!

Happy Friday! X

Tuesday, 3 November 2015

What wood you play? Gorgeous wooden toys from ASDA!

Wooden toys.  They look so beautiful, don't they?  I remember when I was pregnant with Ethan that I was dead set against plastic-y, garish and noisy modern toys.  I loved the idea of Ethan playing with wooden toys, found objects (putting a basket of random house stuff like material, wooden spoons, measuring cups etc together) and my old toys from my childhood.

In reality?  Yes, there have been a fair few new plastic toys.  It wouldn't be normal or fair to deprive him of them.  Also, there are may occasions where he has been given such toys by friends and family.  I cannot deny that if I've found them not being played with they have been quickly given to charity.. but overall, both my boys have a balance of plastic and wooden toys.

A principal I do like to stick to is quality.  I think it's all too easy to fill your house with plastic tat.  The kind of thing you find in the pound shop or get in cracker or party bag.  I try where possible to only get things that will last.  This is mostly because I don't like waste!  I hate thinking of landfills full of crap.  Quality doesn't always mean expensive.  I happily buy second hand.  I look around for a bargain.  You can find quality in both wooden and plastic toys.

And yet... I still prefer the wood.  What is it about wood then?  It's nice to handle, I feel.  Softer.  Warmer.  I like that if a wooden toy gets a bit bashed about it seems to add character whereas a bashed about plastic toy just seems to end up, well, broken!  When plastic breaks it leads to nasty jagged edges.  Wood mostly dents.

I do like that with wooden toys you don't tend to get sound-effects provided.  The boys create their own.  Whether it's chooo-chooo-ing for the wooden train set or making the noise of the steam from a wooden coffee machine, it's imaginative play.

I was contacted by Asda recently, asking if I knew about their range of wooden toys and if we would like to review one.  As we were in the throws of moving house I thought it best we pick something fairly small.  I had a new (second hand, handmade by my friend) wooden toy kitchen that I was keeping in the garage, intending it to go in our playroom when we moved house so I thought the boys would enjoy something that would go with that.  There were fair few cooking/kitchen/tea set toys to choose from but I plumped for a breakfast set which included two slices of bread, a toaster, a plate, jam, marmalade, a knife, butter and a butter dish.

Asda Wooden Toys Breakfast Set

As soon as we were set up in our new house and had a chance to get the playroom together, I showed the boys the set and they were excited to get playing.  I moved the toy kitchen into the playroom and then we set up all the bits I had for it including the breakfast set.  The boys then set to playing!

What did I notice about the toy?  Well, the packaging was good.  It was well packaged inside, secure, nicely wrapped.  The price was amazing.  All of the Asda wooden toys are a fantastic price.  The breakfast set is lovely to handle.  The wood is smooth but sturdy.  It's been played with for a  few weeks now and there have been no breakages.  I asked Ethan what he liked about it in particular.  He told me "I love how the toast pops up from the toaster! It feels real!".  Now, that's a genuine quote from him!   I have to agree though, it's a great fun action.

Asda Wooden Toys Breakfast Set

Felix loves the little jam and marmalade pots.  He plays slightly differently to Ethan.  Not surprising, Ethan is 6 and Felix is 2.  Felix likes to pretend the strawberry jam is "strawberry juice" and I'm forever being presented with a "bottle of strawberry juice".  He enjoys the butter as well (the slices of butter stick together with Velcro) though he insists it's cheese!

No matter what the boys are doing with it, there is no doubt that they are fueling their imaginations.  I love toys that imitate life.  Chores that are mundane to us are exciting and intriguing to our children and it's lovely to have a way for them to mimic us safely.  There are few things more heartwarming to me than to hear my boys playing nicely.  Hearing them serving food up in their kitchen, munching on pretend toast.  It's wonderful.  At least when they are playing with wooden toys I know the only thing that is going to "run out" is their energy, not batteries!  Good all round for everyone.  Also, I have to say kudos to Asda for using a very handsome young chap with luscious hair in their catalog photos for this toy!  Unisex toy win!

Asda wooden breakfast set unisex boy with long hair

The wooden toy range starts from £5 and includes everything from dolls house accessories to balance bikes to outdoor play equipment!

Friday, 30 October 2015

Funky Kid Friday

Happy Friday everyone! It's Friday so it's Funky Kid! Thank you Hannah for hosting last week :-)

Just a reminder of our guidelines:

- Link up your kids fashion post/s below
- Comment on the hosts and at least one other post
- Display our badge (see sidebar)
- Tag us on Twitter - I'm @medicatedfollow and Hannah is @mamamakedopush.  We will retweet your posts.  Don't forget to use the tags #funkykidfriday and #FKF as well!
- The linky opens on Fridays and is live until the following Monday.

Thank you to everyone who linked up last week - it was nice to see so many of you!  I would like to give a shout out to Jack's Paper Moon and Noah's wonderful knitwear! What a hat!

This week, I am writing about (shhhhhh) Festive Fashion!!

Now it's over to you!  Please link up below and spread the word!