Breastfeed poster

Sitting here at 3 in the morning with my 4 week old the sleepless nights commencing and my thoughts returning to the long nights I had with Z trying to attempt breastfeeding.

I loved the idea of breastfeeding with my first, it was the most natural thing to do. I wasn’t caught into ‘the breast is best” campaign. It was just something I as a mum really wanted to do. My mind was set my baby was here but my body wasn’t. It’s a possibility that I struggled more because it was my first child, but then life throws you more lemons when I later became ill with the noro virus and couldn’t even go near my 2 week old. But even during that I didn’t relent. Nothing could stop me from breastfeeding my baby. I knew after I got better that I wanted to try again.

Then I got sick once more – this time becoming hospitalized. I hadn’t got round to retrying properly and my illnesses were not helping milk production. I had to make a choice. So I let her continue formula drinking as that was what she was having to do whilst my bout of sicknesses took over my recovering body. By the time I got out of hospital and was over my medication my baby was hitting 2 months and mummy was dry. She was so settled with the formula that I knew there was no going back. Don’t get me wrong – I cried, I was upset and I saw myself as a failure. But with time, I slowly healed and saw my Z flourish on bottle feeding (something I thought wouldn’t happen). She was happy and content which made me feel the same. So much so that come second time around I didn’t fret, I didn’t just go with what everyone said. I went with my choice as a mum. I decided to exclusively bottle feed from day one.

I didn’t feel the need to breastfeed because even through bottle I bonded, and I knew my baby was content because he was being fed. I didn’t feel bad for myself but I felt sympathy for other mums. Even in the hospital I felt for the lady across the ward with her first baby struggling into the night to breastfeed. Her hungry child screaming the place down continuously. I heard her breakdown but kept getting pushed by her husband. Deep down if she had the choice she would have just fed her baby through any form, because all mums want is to look after our little babes and make sure their tummy’s are full. No one wants to hear their child cry into the morning because they cannot feed them.

People look at bottle feeding the same as breast feeding. Both are frowned upon in some form or another. Yes they both have their individual disadvantages but they also have their own advantages. As a mum who has seen it from both sides I support all mums. I support the struggle we all have, be it bottle or breast. We wake up at all times in the night, we all have sore boobs (some longer than others), we all heed to our crying babies. But we all also have a choice. That choice is our own to make as grown women and mothers.

So be it bottle or breast – the most important thing in all of this is that you are feeding your child nonetheless and as long as your child is happy so are you. My advice, support every mum the same amount because the reality is we’ve all struggled when it comes to feeding.


Aveeno Daily moisturising lotion


This year has played havoc with Z skin. From dry air to unstoppable rain, the temperatures she’s had to endure has created a rough bumpy skin with patches of slight eczema on her arms and legs. As we are having trouble with the GP – appointment wise; we decided to look at over the counter creams ourselves that had a similar formulation/thickness as the GP recommend ones – Double Base creams.

Looking at the different selections of creams that are available in the shops – we knew what would work on her skin and what wouldn’t as we had previously used creams like Junior E45 and thicker creams such as the Cussons Mum and Me range with very little effect.

So when we got a freebie packet of Aveeno Daily Moisturising Lotion from one of the magazines, we had to give it a go. The reviews we read before trying it were great and influenced us to give it a go. So after a small patch test, we started to see a slight difference on the skin texture and moisture levels. A week of use on the same spot proved that it was a cream that would make a difference to her skin over all. Especially as it was suitable for sensitive skin too, we could use it all over her body without worrying or having to mix creams from her face to her body.


The use of natural ingredients such as a Colloidal Oatmeal helps to give the skin moisture and keeps symptoms likes eczema at bay. Even as the weather has been continually playing havoc with Z skin I am now not as worried as I previously was as we have got it under some sort of control. As well as this, the cream is thick to touch but very light once it goes on to the skin which helps in not making you feeling coated on.

We love it so much that we even have a small handbag version in my bag so it’s with us on our little adventures.


Munchkin 360 Cup: 1 year on


It has been one year since I came across this little goody at Brit Mums Live 2015 and couldn’t resist but get my hands on it. To be very honest I really wanted to write a review on it when I first received it, however over time and with my busy lifestyle it has been put to the side. In a very odd way I am glad that I waited; as a year later I am still one happy Mum.

Now that is saying a lot when it comes to beakers. As we all know, the daily dilemmas of leaking beakers in your bag, difficult parts to clean and in some cases mould can cause any parent to have their own meltdown. But the Munchkin 360 Cup is exactly what it is on the packaging.


Not only is it easy to open (with only three parts), simple to clean but also amazingly it does not leak! You can turn it upside down, side ways up and nothing happens. The sucking motion from your child allows the water to seep up through the holes in the middle section of the beaker and travel through the sides of the top cover. The flow is easy and goes with how ever fast your child drinks – simple.

This beaker helped Z to move on from a constant beaker user to a glass user – and to be honest, you can use this as a solo cup too as once the parts are separated the top of the main beaker is smooth and child friendly.

As a Mum, I tried many different brands and types of beakers but each one had some sort of fault in them, but this one has so far surpassed them all.

As we still use the Munchkin on a daily basis (as it is just easier to fill that up at home and have it lying around or to put in to Z school bag). The use has not withered any parts or discoloured the bottle in anyway. As well as this Z has full control of the beaker and it doesn’t make her feel like a baby as the design suits her age well and she stills feels like a big kid.

Perfect for years on end from what it looks like.


Dr PawPaw 7-in-1 hair treatment styler


Mummy needs some serious TLC and so does her hair! I hardly ever go and get my hair cut or styled (bad I know) – but the amount of time/effort and money that goes on it just kills it for me and I just think I could spend it on something more important – like the monthly shop or something Z needs.

Therefore my hair only gets done twice a year – every 6 months and each time it goes through a dramatic change which helps my sanity and makes me feel great. This by the way does not include any new products being bought – I always just use standard products or my regular drop of Argan Oil by MiaFlora after I wash my hair. I have to say I do love this product and it has helped me in many ways since Z was born as my hair had the dramatic fallout!  But sometimes all you want to do is splurge on something new and exciting.

This is where Dr.PawPaw 7-in-1 Hair Treatment Styler comes in. I came across this product in the Gurgle magazine and was enticed straight away. I’m not one for being ‘bought’ into new products but this time I couldn’t help myself. It may just be because I am due a hair cut and I’m in real need of something to keep me pampered for the last part of my pregnancy but I got caught up and started to check out some reviews.

From what I saw, this looked like everything I was in need of and not only that but being able to to use it on dry and wet hair is a miracle product for mummy dearest. So it didn’t take me long to click the button and order it.


Firstly, the bottle itself is a very decent size and for the price you pay it is actually a great deal. I love how it is designed and the size of the bottle is also great if you are on the go and need something in your travel bag.

The first thing that caught me when I did open the bottle was the smell. The enticing combination of Coconut and Mango transport you to another place where you feel lifted and fresh. This a massive bonus for me as the smell lasts till your next wash a few days later which means your hair is always smelling fresh.

Personally for me – as I have horrendously thick hair that tangles like no tomorrow and takes ages to dry and style all the steps in the product appealed to me. After towel drying my hair, I spray some of the product onto my hands, rub and spread from roots to the length of my hair giving it an even amount of serum. I then dry my hair with the hair dryer and once done, add a bit more serum into my hair before combing and straightening/styling. This helps to reduce the fizz, dry ends and also untangles my hair.

An added bonus is if after a few days I need to re-style my hair and I’m stretched for time to wash it, I spritz a bit of serum on my hair and style. It honestly looks like a fresh wash has occurred and with very little fuss.

This product is a bonus with a little extra as it saves time for busy me and makes it look like I’ve just walked out of the salon – something I miss doing for 6 months at a time!

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Persian Rice Cookies


Ramadan is upon us and this year I wanted to start creating traditions. As Z is now 3 and a half I realised that she needed to start understanding about who we are and what we celebrate. So what better way than to make a special dessert that could be handed out as Ramadan gifts to all our friends and family.

Every year I usually concentrate on Eid and a sweet dish for the morning – which means that Ramadan normally gets my creative touch of chocolate covered dates. This year however I was up for a challenge and even though I had to get my head around this recipe a month in advance as it was very out of my comfort zone, I still managed to pull it off – with some help from Z and Daddy.

Traditionally this type of cookie is from Persia and can be made with either normal flour or rice flour. Growing up we used to have this cookie for certain special occasions. However I did not know the originality came from Persia. Instead, for us we know them as ‘Khataya’ something my grandma would make or we would receive as little gift treats. To know the background of these cookies has really got me excited and even though it took a while to make it with all the different sections and the careful approach of baking and cooling. I know for a fact that it is a definite one to stay on our ‘create a tradition’ list for every Ramadan.

persian Rice cookies

Makes: Approx. 36 cookies

For the syrup:
300g sugar
112ml water
56ml rose water
1/2 teaspoon lime juice

For the batter:
225g clarified butter – can use salted or unsalted butter (instructions in point one)
4 egg yolks
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cardamom
420g rice flour (have up to 840g handy)
1/4 cup pistachios, chopped, for garnish (optional)


  • To clarify the butter, bring it to a boil over very low heat. Simmer for 15 minutes, removing the foam from the top as it rises. When the liquid looks clear and the milk solids have settled at the bottom, pour the liquid through a sieve into another bowl (leaving the solids behind). Let this cool. 
  • Prepare the syrup by combining the sugar and water in a pot. Bring to a boil and simmer for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat, add the rose water and lime juice, and set aside to cool. It should be room temperature and not too thick before proceeding.
  • Beat the egg yolks into the cooled syrup until incorporated.
  • In a large bowl, combine the cooled butter, cardamom and rice flour. Mix well, then add the syrup mixture and mix until the dough is quite stiff and is no longer sticky.
  • The dough should be thick enough to hold its shape when rolled. If not, add small amounts of rice flour until the texture turns firm and shiny but still malleable. 
  • Preheat the oven to 350F/180C. Line a cookie sheet with baking paper. (We had 3 cookie trays ready on the go which helped with the production line concept as we could only use the top of the oven).
  • Take a spoonful of dough the size of a walnut, roll into a ball between your palms, flatten slightly, and place on the cookie sheet. Repeat, leaving about an inch between the cookies.
  • Slightly dent the middle of the cookie and sprinkle the crushed pistachios into the ‘well’.
  • Place the cookies in the preheated oven and bake for 15 minutes, or until firm and cracked on top. They should still be quite white.
  • Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 20 minutes before using a spatula to carefully remove them from the paper – these cookies crumble very easily and if taken off when slightly warm will split the bottom from the top.

The original recipe was found from ‘The Traveler’s Lunchbox‘ and I converted it to UK measurements to make it easier for myself to read. I love the way this traditional cookie can bring back so many childhood memories and is going to help in keeping those memories alive in Z for the future.


Half term with kids this February


Half term has come and pretty much nearly gone and I haven’t even had a minute to get down to writing ideas on what to do this holiday. I officially feel like a school mum, trying to fit in as much as possible in the space of a week – mainly just trying to set up play dates with friends that we don’t see very often whilst I still continue to go to work.

So here it is… a short but handy list of what I would have liked to do to and what you can do in the last few days of this half term…

1. Stick Man Trail

After the hit of the Gruffalo Trail we have finally been given the joy to experience the much loved Stick Man trail. One that we have been unable to do this half term but will be heading out to sometime this year. Give it a go and let us know what you think.


2. Imagine Children’s Festival

Its back again and on till Sunday 21st February so make sure you stop by at the South Bank Centre. Z loved last years one so I’m sure this one is one not to miss.


3. Westfield London

Want something in between leisure, shopping and keeping the kids entertained then head down to any of the two Westfield Malls and take a break. From Musical entertainment to Arts and Crafts there’s something to please every age.


4. The Lion King Musical

From the recent revival of the Lion Guard on Disney, it would only be fitting to take the kids to see the original but on stage! This amazing performance will give them a chance to be fully immersed in a story that is loved by all.



#HealthyFebruary challenge: Week one


We are one week down on our challenge and it has been great. So far we have ended up going all green, but we are loving the subtle effects it is having on our bodies – especially the boost in the morning.

I personally am finding myself to be less hungry – so no more snacking in between breakfast and lunch which is great. Hubby is loving the different tastes and textures and Z just loves the flavour.

The experimentation of the different fruits and vegetables have also been interesting. As even though I have followed some online recipes, I have also been mixing and matching recipes myself.

Here are two of our favourite ones from last week.

We started the challenge with a very green smoothie.


1 Apple

1 Celery Stick

1 Kiwi

Handful of Kale

Chunk of Ginger

1 Lime (Juice)

Coconut Water


Outcome: Overall I think for the first one we did go a bit crazy. But it was interesting as we were surprised by the different tastes and how much we would like Kale. It is something that neither one of us had tried before – so shooting in the dark it was a success. As well as that the hint of ginger which at the time we thought was way to much was great, and as we do not have much ginger in our diets I think this is a great way to add it in as we can get its natural benefits – without cooking it.

The second one was another green smoothie – one that I had come across online and to be honest very excited to try as I love citrus.


1 Orange

Handful of spinach

1 Orange (Juice)

Quarter Banana

1tsp Honey

Coconut Water


Outcome: Just as expected. It was Yum! The best thing about this one was that it tasted just like a fresh mocktail. The addition of the honey cut the citrus so that it had a hint of sweetness. Z drank her one as well as half of mine as she couldn’t get enough. The best thing about this one was that she didn’t have a clue that she was having spinach as there was no taste of it. 1-0 to mummy for giving her greens!

Keep in tune for the next dose of our challenge and let us know if your’e taking part and how its going.

Happy #HealthyFebruary


Healthy February challenge


February is literally only a few days away and this year we are planning to try out the smoothie craze. Here in the Bubble we didn’t jump on the band wagon straight away and its taken this very long and tiring winter to push me into giving it a go.

So as we have made that decision I have started up a Pinterest Board called Healthy Smoothies and Shakes. This literally has all the the types of smoothies we would love to try out. Our main aim is to provide a new way of in taking our 5 a day. To have this in the morning with breakfast for Z and for us even as a breakfast substitute on our days at work. This will be carried out or ‘tried to be’ every 2 days giving us a break in between for a whole month.

Things to do:

Buy ingredients (obviously) so tonnes of veg, fruit and seeds

Buy x2 Travel flasks – hopefully glass

Create a weekly diary of agreed drinks, so we know what we a preparing the night before as well as getting a varied diet

So challenge for the month: Try lots of new smoothies, check out their benefits and view the results at the end of the month! Keep in tune for regular updates and pictures.


Images by skinnytaste.com and tidymom.net


Tutu ballerina birthday


Magical number 3. Z latest birthday party consisted of shades of pink, gold and creams, tutus and frills. As she had been going to Baby Ballet since she was 10 months old, the time had come to do her birthday within that theme.

She had shown that not only had she learnt a lot during this time but ballet had given her so much confidence that we knew it was the right choice. I had been creating a board on Pinterest for a while however with only a few weeks to get all the preparations complete my ideas were going to have to take a bit of a hit. I chose the main few ideas that I absolutely loved and went with them.

We found a local venue at Redbridge Sports centre. They had a fabulous dance hall that was perfect for the theme. Not only that but they were fantastic in helping set up the venue and anything else that we required.


Next I ordered the cake from Kaye she has been making cakes for a year now for us and we love her work so Z cake was a no brainer. Having looked at a few designs I chose different parts from a few cakes and sent my design across. The outcome was beautiful and as usual tasted yummy! Hits all around.


Once we had the main things completed, I started looking at outfits for Z. Even though she has a lovely tutu that she wears at ballet, I really wanted for her to look special and stand out. Looking at a few places online and completing tonnes of research I eventually came across the perfect tutu! Sadly they did not send their products outside of Australia, so once again I was stuck. I contacted my cousin who is a bridal couture designer and mentioned it to him. He told me not to worry and that he would make a beautiful tutu for the birthday girl. The end product was so touching and stunning that everyone kept asking where I’d got it from. Thank you Aleem Yusuf Couture you made Z feel like a princess ballerina and she’s got her first designer piece!


I love a good party and there is no party without food or goodies! This year we decided to keep it simple and as it was mainly all just family coming with a few friends we wanted to focus on the children more. I made two types of cold pastas one veggie and one with tuna. There were 4 different types of sandwiches – Tuna and Sweetcorn, Jam, Cheese and Cucumber and lastly egg mayonnaise. I had a few Indian snacks and the rest were all cheap and cheerful snacks from the supermarket as well as veggies and dips.


Surrounding the cake I had created a sweet fantasy, with mixes of laces, chocolate buttons, jelly and more. You can guess which table was more favourable with the kids.


For the party bags I wanted to incorporate all the different ages and as their were three little boys coming too, I colour coordinated their section with black and white moustache theme.

From cups to plates and party bags the boys had something to take home with them that did not scream Pink!

photo 2

I set out to make individual wands for the children. The girls had ribbons of gold, pink and white on theirs and the boys had black, gold and white. These did not take as long as expected and were a lot of fun to make. I used fabric glue and a cake dowel and then cut the ribbons to a slightly longer length than the dowels. One of the ends of the ribbons were stuck overlapping each other at the top of the dowel whilst the rest stayed loose. These rested in a vase and were handed out to the children during the party.

photo 1

Another addition we did for the girls were tutus. Ordering them from eBay made a massive difference to the pocket and they came in colours of pink and white. For the boys I picked up fake moustaches from Party Delights and musical designed bow ties from eBay which they absolutely loved having fun with.


The ballet theme ran through the party from the invites to the party bags. Her teacher from Baby Ballet, Laura was fantastic, she created a great atmosphere and Z couldn’t have had a better time. The kids loved the entertainment and music and they all took part in some sort of activity.


What I really loved was watching Z show off to her family and friends on how much she had learnt and it made me proud to see that all those lessons had actually been worth it for my Baby Ballerina.


New year – New room


This year we decided to look at redesigning Z room. At the moment her room is full of white wooden furnishings, sandy cream carpet and gold walls with a feature rose pink wall.

As the size of her room is quite small we opted for white in the furniture as it automatically makes the room look bigger and brighter.

This year however, we are looking to keep with the same furniture colours but add a new bed and make it into a bit more of a grown up room to create space.

So here is goes – Z redesigned room ideas 3 years on.

The bed:

As we are keeping her cot bed in her room, we will be converting it into a ‘sofa’ so that she can use it as a reading nook. Therefore we have decided to get her a bigger girls bed – aka a single bed. I have to say after a lot of hunting I have personally fallen in love with this bed! The Hemnes bed is gorgeous, it comes in white, feels secure with a wooden support wall of one side and even has plenty of under bed storage (which is a must when you live in a flat)! Looking at the reviews It can used as a double bed too so if we ever need to convert it or when we move to a house with more room we can use it in the spare room for guests. Perfect.



Obviously when we buy a new bed we are going to have to get a mattress too – just the other day we found this beauty from the little Green Sheep. Even though we have not had any issues with the current one for Z we have fallen in love with this one. Created with full on natural/organic materials it gives you a choice for soft on one side and firm on the other.


Dressing table:

Now that Z is 3 I would love to get her a playing dress up table. Over the course of the last few weeks she has really got into dressing up – even though her fake lipstick idea has been going on for a while now. We had a look at a few different ones but the Maisie dressing table and stool set from the Great Little Trading Co. has become my favourite. Only thing is I am going to have to rearrange and set out some serious measurements.



We are massive book fans here in the Bubble and that does not stop at Z. This girl has even beaten me on the book collection. From nursery rhymes board books to short tales it seems like she has everything under the sun. So a key improvement to her room this year will be adding some sort of bookshelf. At the moment we have a small section on the floor where we have created a reading nook for her and all the books are very accessible. With the change around we have started to look at ideas. We would need a lot of space and possibly something to hang on the wall at her height. Here is the Greenaway Gallery Bookcase by The Great Little Trading Co.


The Room Theme:

Oddly enough I am falling in love with something a bit more neutral. I think I have gathered that once Z started getting a choice on colours she’s probably going to go for pinks or purples or orange (my own room growing up followed very similar patterns). So after a little deliberation I have decided on small colour and possibly more whites or even greys. I am not too sure about wallpaper but if Daddy will get round to it I would love this to be her room theme by Etsy. My inspiration has come from her current bed canopy from IKEA.



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