Friday, 28 November 2014

My 5 baby must-haves

Shopping for your new baby is so exciting but it can be a bit overwhelming with all the must have buys.

As a second time mummy I have found myself going back to some of the things I used and loved with Lucas four years ago when he was a newborn, but I've also come across some new gems which both me and Charlotte now wouldn't be without.

Here's what I've found to be my must haves...

1. The Morrck fleece blanket.

I don't think this was around  4 years ago when Lucas was a baby or if it was it wasn't something I'd heard of.  Its such a clever idea and something we've used almost everyday since Charlotte was born.  I love it so much that I actually have the next size up already on order.
Basically its a super cosy fleece blanket that fits in your baby's car seat.  The clever part though is that it has holes in it which the car seat straps and buckle fit through so you can strap them into the carseat under the blanket.  This means there's no need for bulky winter coats or sleepsuits in their car seat but they're still snug with the blanket round them, all tucked in and most importantly, safe.  Charlotte looks so cute all cocooned up in this.
Its been great for quick trips out, especially for things like nursery drop offs and picks ups as its so fuss free.  They also come in some really funky colours and patterns which is always fun, especially in this dreary winter weather.
This was given to us as a present when Charlotte was born and is what she came home from hospital in and hasn't left her car seat since (except for the odd wash).
I've recommended it to so many of my friends who are expecting babies.

2. Grobag sleeping bags.

We used these with Lucas from when he was 3 months old, right up until he was about 18 months and were the reason I was able to sleep soundly while he did.
They meant I didn't have the worry that he was going to kick the covers over himself or wriggle under them and get stuck and because they have the different tog rating you know they're going to be cosy and at the right temperature no matter what time of year it is.
I have noticed that the Grobag variety are a little bit more expensive than some of the other brands but the quality is amazing which makes up for it.  So much so that even after Lucas wearing them night after night for months and them being through the wash a million times, they still look like new and so I've been able to dig them out of the vacuum pack bags and reuse them with Charlotte.  I will admit however to buying some new ones for her too.  I just couldn't resist the cute pink,floral design with having a little girl this time around.

3. Aden and Anais swaddle blankets

These award winning, 100% cotton muslin swaddle blankets became the must have, sell-out baby item last summer when Prince George was spotted in one of them as a newborn.  But we actually had these already from when Lucas was a baby. At £44 for what seems to essentially be four extra large muslin squares they are expensive and when I told my husband how much I'd paid for them I thought his head was going to explode, but even he would now say we have really had our moneys worth from them as they've been so handy.
Funnily enough we have never actually used them to swaddle, but instead have found countless other uses for them.  A sunshade to drape over the pram/ car seat in the nicer weather, a make-shift play mat to throw down when out and about visiting friends (your little one can still roll around happily but you don't have the fear of them being sick on your friends new carpet) and also draping them over swing chairs, bouncers, playmats to save them from the endless sick from a baby with reflux (throwing one of these in the wash is a lot easier than trying to strip the material off a swing chair every two minutes to wash it).
These also seem to get softer the more you wash them and Charlotte loves snuggling into them.

4. Mamas and Papas acqua two stage ergo bath.

This is the same bath we had for Lucas and makes bathing a tiny, slippery newborn a breeze.  Its design provides two integral support positions.  The first for newborn and the second for a sitting baby.  These moulded positions mean baby is safe and supported and you have both your hands free to wash them and play. I love bath time.  The smile and proud look on Charlotte's face as she does bigger and bigger splashes just melts my hearts and this bath has meant she can kick and splash til her hearts content while I can sit and watch her, rather than struggle to keep hold of her.
Again its a little bit more expensive than your basic baby bath but I do think you get what you pay for and this bath still looks brand new even second time around.

5. Sophie le giraffe teethers.

I'm not sure how I managed to miss all the buzz around this cult baby product when I was a first time mummy, but when Charlotte was born we were given these as a present and they are fab!
I don't know what it is about them that baby's love so much, but it certainly keeps Charlotte entertained and now at 5 months old as she's starting teething it really seems to help her gums and is something she can really grab hold of easily.  We now don't go anywhere without having a Sophie in the changing bag, ready to whip out whenever we have an unhappy baby on our hands.

What are your baby must haves?


Monday, 24 November 2014

Welcome to a Cosy Cup of Life and my first ever blog post

I'm Eilidh, I'm 30, married to Mark and mummy to my two children, Lucas who is 4 and the newest edition to our family, Charlotte, who is 5 months.

I am currently on maternity leave and now that the initial few months of chaos which come with having a newborn are over and we are starting to have something resembling a routine, with the added bonus of Charlotte having an earlier bedtime to me now, I have a little me time and a chance to start my blog.

As a second time mummy I know just how quickly time with your little ones passes (cliche I know, but true) and how easily moments pass you by as you hurry to the next baby or toddler stage which is quickly followed by the angst of this stage.  Once you mix in the usual daily chores, meet-ups and activities (of your other child if you have one) its easy to see how everything starts blurring together and we forget to stop and enjoy the now and remember the little things. With this in mind I am hoping that this blog becomes a sort of diary of me and my little family, to capture these moments and early years of our family.

But, I also like nothing better than a cup of something cosy (tea or coffee, preferably with an extra shot of caffeine at the minute) and a chat with friends to discuss the ins and outs of life, baby problems and the latest 'must have, will make your life so much easier' product.  Its also much more comforting than typing your latest parenting question or baby query into the dreaded Google search engine.  This blog I hope is a chance to share all of these things with new friends, you guys.

So anyway...what's been happening in our family life this past week?

Wells its been nursery as usual for my eldest, Lucas and a particularly busy week. School photos (xmas pressies - check), visits by the dentist and a whole host of letters home about everything from fancy dress fundraising days, the school's Christmas fayre and fees due for the term.  Out came the diary and the 'to do' list and everything onto it before baby brain took over and I dropped a few balls (I wonder how long I can get away with the baby brain excuse for??).

With school nursery back in full swing after the October holidays it also meant Charlotte, my 5 month old and I could go to our very first baby class together.  By this stage when Lucas was a baby we were already going to baby swimming, massage and yoga but second time round trying to co-ordinate baby classes with my toddler's already busy schedule has been a bit of a challenge.  But we found a baby sensory class at out local playbarn which fitted with nursery times and off we went... it was fantastic but more about that in another post.

We also took advantage of a gorgeous, sunny autumnal day and got wrapped up and headed to a local country house estate for a walk.  Lucas, my 4 year old loves nothing better at the minute than getting his wellies on and being outside so any opportunity to do this we take.

We are so lucky to have some beautiful surroundings here in the North East of Scotland and a trip to an old castle or boat lake for a 4 year old really is an adventure and a chance for his imagine to run wild and also to burn of some of his never ending energy racing through the leaves and chasing the ducks.

I also managed to finally make a dent in my Christmas shopping.  My goal every year since having children is to try and have everything done by the start of December.  I haven't managed this in previous years but I'm hoping this year is different.  Does anyone else at the minute have a million tabs open on their ipad with various baskets waiting to be paid for?

All in all a busy week!

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