The Scrummy Mummy

Because every mummy is scrummy

June 2011 archive

MamaBabyBliss Bliss Stick – Giveaway ( closed )

As busy mums ourselves we know just how hard it can be to grab just 5 minutes to yourself, which is why we have created the Bliss Stick of Uplifting Oil – a pampering instant pick-me- up that you can just pop in your handbag!

The MamaBabyBliss Bliss Stick Uplifting Oil is simply dabbed onto pressure points whenever a woman needs a lift. The all-natural ingredients include:

  • Lime Oil: lifts depression and energizes a tired mind, while easing breathing and assisting digestion.
  • Bergamot: for depression, feeling fed-up, respiratory problems, colds and flu, PMS and SAD.
  • Geranium: helps relieve stress, mild depression, PMS, anxiety and tension, menopausal problems and for general energizing.

 

“We designed this product for new mums who are typically running on empty, but we’ve found that women in general find it a useful little lift when they’re feeling tired, depressed or stressed out. Our Bliss Stick will give them a boost when they need it most and the pocket size makes it the perfect treat whenever you need it,” explains Justina Perry, founder of MamaBabyBliss and mum of four.

 

The Bliss Stick Uplifting Oil is available from http://www.mamababybliss.com and costs £5.  For a larger pampering gift, try one of the Little Bags of Bliss for Pregnancy, Mamas or Babies from MamaBabyBliss. The MamaBabyBliss range of natural pampering products is made with natural active ingredients that are ethically sourced and are entirely free of chemicals found in similar products.

We have 10 Bliss Sticks to Giveaway

  • Simply Leave me a comment telling me you want to enter

This Giveaway ends 20th July at midnight. UK residents only

 

How to relax when you are a busy mummy

A recent study undertaken by mother and baby specialists, MamaBabyBliss revealed that out that 80% of new mums spent less than 15 minutes a day looking after themselves. Time is precious, so here are some simple tips for looking after yourself in only a few minutes a day.

 

Get up and glow!

For many new mums, the only ‘me-time’ is taking a shower. A great way to tone up the body and skin is some daily skin-brushing. Using a dry body brush, brush your body vigorously in a direction towards the heart BEFORE you have a shower. This helps break down toxins eg. cellulite and boosts circulation. Moisturise afterwards for an added glow.

 

Breathe!

It’s amazing how just taking a few deep breaths really can help not only calm you down but re-energise you instantly. Take a moment to stop. Find a comfy place to sit and place your hands on your tummy and take a deep breath in, pushing your belly out (it doesn’t look pretty but it works!). Next breathe out, drawing your tummy back in as far as you can. This simple breathing exercise will also strengthen your abdominal and pelvic floor muscles. Do this a few times whenever you feel a bit frazzled and see how you feel! You can also practise this with baby (see below).

 

Water, water, water!

Ditch fizzy drinks as high levels of sugar will only create a temporary ‘high’ and can lead to mood swings. Boring as it sounds, opt for water instead. Drinking 2 litres a day, will boost your energy levels and your sleep-deprived skin will look gorgeous. If you are breast-feeding, this will also keep you hydrated. Stash bottles of water around the house at all your feeding stations.

 

Get fit!

Schedule in an hour to go for a walk during the day. Fresh air is great for you and baby and you’ll have more energy to get things done when you get back. Treat this time as ‘you-time’. Play some music or why not go with a friend. Walking briskly for an hour will burn up to 300 calories, safely and healthily.

 

Relax!

Relaxation is key for our health and sanity and here’s a relaxation exercise you can try with your baby. Find a clean, comfortable and quiet spot for you to lie with your baby on the floor. Place a rolled up blanket or cushion under your knees. Then lay your baby on your chest or by your side on a comfy blanket. This way, your baby can really pick up on the relaxed energy and relax too.

Now just pay attention to your breathing. Breathe slowly and deeply into your belly. As you breathe in, your belly expands, as you breathe out your belly comes in. Begin with five breathes and build up to more. This simple exercise will de-stress and revive you so do it as often as you can during the day.

 

Smile!

Research has shown that people who smile and are optimistic have stronger immune systems and live longer. Keep a small notebook handy for you and baby and make a note of everything your baby does to make you smile! It’ll make a wonderful keepsake of the early days of motherhood too.

 

 

Leapfrog Shapes and Sharing Picnic Basket Review and Giveaway (closed)

We received the lovely shapes and sharing picnic basket for Caitlyn to play with as part of our outdoor play feature.

When we received it Caitlyn’s cousin George got to the parcel first and started to set it up. He really enjoyed the talking basket. Once Caitlyn got home she really enjoyed playing with it she also liked the talking basket but also loved the plates with the shape sorter.

What I thought was really cute was that Caitlyn played with the basket with Ellie and pretended to give her a drink and kept telling her to eat up her food.

What leapfrog claim:

The Shapes & Sharing Picnic Basket helps little learners explore shapes, colours, manners and more! Over 30 audio responses encourage pretend play, and the 14-piece set helps children build motor skills as they sort, match, stack, empty and fill.

What we liked:

  • Its great to teach children to share
  • Its great for outdoor play
  • Caitlyn loved the talking basket
  • The price
  • It turns itself off after a while when not being played with.

The Shapes and Sharing Picnic Basket kept both Ellie and Caitlyn occupied for quite a long time so there isn’t any thing we didn’t like.

[rating=5]

You can buy it at ToysRUs for about £20

 

I have 1 Shapes and Sharing Picnic Basket to giveaway

  • Simply leave a comment below telling me what you favourite picnic item is.

For additional entries ( please leave separate comments for each entry)

  • Follow my blog on Google Friends Connect
  • Follow my Facebook Page
  • Tweet ” I’m in to win a Shapes and Sharing Picnic Basket with @thescrummymummy http://goo.gl/yw0RH

This giveaway ends 15th July 2011 at midnight. Good Luck to All

Koeka Swimwear Review

As a parent I have become acutely aware of the fact that a lot of baby and toddler clothing is very generic – you can buy the same thing in about ten colours but there is not always a great choice in terms of style.  Toby has some lovely pieces of clothing but is getting to the age where he is starting now to look more like a little boy and less like a baby.

Continuing our swimming theme from last week (National Baby Swim week) we were very lucky to be given the opportunity to try out some of the retro inspired pieces of swimwear from Koeka (a gorgeous European brand) who are just launching their new beachwear range for the first time in the UK.

In order to fully try out the range we were extremely lucky to receive a piece for George, Caitlyn,Ellie and Toby!

The claims:

LITTLE ONES CAN SAY HELLO TO SUMMER IN STYLE WITH KOEKA’S BRAND NEW
‘SUMMER IN FRANCE’ BEACHWEAR COLLECTION

Brand new to the UK for 2011, the exclusive new Dutch designed Koeka brand, introduces its first beachwear range this April – the ‘Summer in France’ collection.

The stunning, high end collection embodies easy going French beach chic with a selection of cool board and terry towelling shorts for boys and sweet all in one baby doll bathing suits, retro inspired swimsuits, halter tops and dresses for girls.

Instantly identifiable thanks to its simple vintage inspired cuts, stunning jewel bright colours and gorgeously soft short terry towelling and tricot cotton finishes the collection is available in select independent boutiques and nursery retailers and at www.angelliving.co.uk.  The range is available in sizes from newborn to nine years.

All clothes in the range are not only stunning to look at but designed to be practical enough to have proper fun in too – with each item being machine washable at 30 degrees.

The girls:

We were sent a pair of Calvi Swimpants for Ellie to try

Calvi Swimpant, £24.00 The cutest baby bathers ever see with adorable ruffle detailing on the back.  We defy you to stop taking pictures!  Available in white or hot pink and in ages 0-6 months and 6-9 months’

These were really cute – Ellie looked gorgeous.

A St Tropez swimsuit for Caitlyn to try

St Tropez swimsuit, £30.00: This vintage inspired swimsuit will be a true one off on the beach!  With its retro sweet heart top and low shortie leg cut it’s a real scene stealer.  Available in dark pink, dark aubergine, cobalt blue and grey the swimsuit comes in ages 1 year, 2-3, 4-5 and 6-7’

This was a lovely suit – Sian wasn’t entirely sure about the sweetheart crossover top on a toddler but on the whole liked the suit

And coordinating St Tropez shorts for Toby and George

St Tropez Trunks, £25.00: These funky, retro inspired, short fitted trunks are so much more distinctive and cool than the average swim short!  If your little boy is a water baby they’ll also love the streamlined cut which leaves them with no ‘drag’ in the water – just like all the Olympians.   Available in Baby blue, dark grey and cobalt blue and ages 2-6 months, 6-9 months, 1 year, 2-3 years, 4-5 years, 5-6 years, 6-7 years and 8-9 years.’

These were lovely – unfortunately I managed to shrink Toby’s after tumble drying them – my own stupid fault for not reading the label I guess!

What we liked:

  • Lovely designs
  • Lovely fabrics
  • Good choice of colours and styles for both boys and girls

Would be even better if:

  • They could be machine washed and tumble dried – us busy mums don’t have time to be faffing around with the washing!
  • The St Tropez shorts said hand wash only – although we were told they could be washed at 30oC
  • The sizes come up a little small – order the next size if your child is on the bigger end of the size range – just in case!
  • They are quite expensive compared to other baby / toddler swimwear pieces

 

 

 

 

 

Emma-Jane Bamboo Nursing Vest – Review by Sara

I have been breastfeeding Toby now for six months and in all that time I have been looking for clothes that are suitable for feeding in.

I have tried many different types of top and so was pleased to be given the opportunity to try the Emma-Jane nursing vest.

I received a plain black bamboo feeding vest to try. Immediately when I opened the packet I was impressed at just how soft the material was. The material contains bamboo fibres which are known to have anti-bacterial and non-allergenic properties. Bamboo is also three times as absorbent as cotton which is especially useful in the hot weather we have been having recently.

The top has drop cups with a large round cut out for each breast in the underlayer. It has adjustable straps which are of a good quality and are supportive. It has easy to open clips which I could easily undo with one hand and it has built in support so you can wear it without a bra. I have worn the top a lot so far: on its own as a vest; under other non-breastfeeding tops to allow me to discreetly feed; at night as a support top, with a bra and without etc –  pretty much whenever I can! The material has washed extremely well and the top still looks brand. This is definitely now my vest of choice!

What I liked:

  • Lovely, quality material
  • Washes well
  • Comfortable and supportive with and without a bra
  • Good length – covers my mum-tum well without hanging too far below my other tops

Would be even better if:

There was nothing I didn’t like about this top so I have nothing to say here!

I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend this top to other breastfeeding mothers.

The top is available from figleaves at £21

Nelsons NEW Arnicare Bath & Massage Review

At the end of a long day at work or looking after baby everyone loves to have a relaxing bath although unfortunately we can’t always make the time to have a long soak rather than a quick shower. We were given the opportunity to review a sample of Nelson’s Arnicare Bath and Massage and so i made a special effort to put some time aside for myself to have a bath and a bit of me time.

The claims:

It is a unique dual purpose balm, pour just two caps to create a luxurious, lovely fragranced bath, or massage the balm directly into the skin to massage ease away aches. The invaluable natural properties of Arnica Montana will help to soothe and relax you after a tiring day. Calendula, Evening Primrose and Sweet Almond Oil naturally hydrate and nourish the skin whilst you enjoy the Lavender and Grapefruit essential oils melting away tension and relax the mind. Arnicare arnica bath & massage balm costs £8.15 and is available from Boots.

It really was a lovely product to use and did make you feel much more relaxed and your muscles soothed after using it. The fragrance is quite strong but I really liked it, it is not too feminine and really made me feel calmer and soothed.

The balm can also be used as a massage oil which was particularly useful for my hubby who is a mechanic and often complains of achy shoulders and back. Lucky him got a bit of pampering and he really felt a difference in his muscles afterwards.

What we liked:

  • Effective on relaxing achy muscles when used in bath and as a massage oil
  • Nice consistency oil to use for muscle massage
  • Nicely presented product
  • Wonderfully relaxing fragrance

Would be even better if:

  • It is a little expensive for a bath oil but the scent and the fact it is multipurpose makes up for the price.

 

Build-A-Bear : Maxine Clark Interview – Giveaway of Her Book ( closed )

A few weeks ago Sara, Toby and I went to the  Build-A-Bear workshop in Bluewater, Kent to make a bear for Tommy’s and to meet the CEO Maxine Clark.

 

First of  all we met Bearamy the Build-A-Bear mascot and his friend Paulette the Rabbit. Toby loved the characters, which surprised Sara and me as kids normally get a bit scared of them!

Here is Sara and Toby with Bearamy and Paulette.

We then went into the store to make our charity bears which were going to be given to children at St Marys and St Thomas’s. All the bears were the same but each heart was different as we were asked to make a wish on the heart.

Here is Toby with his unstuffed bear

I then got to meet Maxine and she very kindly took 5 mins to answer some questions from The Scrummy Mummy Readers.

 

  • Of all the bears that Build-A-Bear Workshop has produced, which is your most memorable?

The original little brown cub is the most memorable for me as it reminded me of my original teddy and is really the bear that started it all. He has inspired so many versions over the years!

  • How long did it take from your original idea to actually opening up your first store?

About a year

  • What is the most unusual name for a bear that you’ve ever heard of in one of the stores?

Kids come up with some crazy names; it’s more the way that the kids use their creativity to mix it up that I notice though; the outfits, the names – I love it all and learn so much from their ideas.

  • Do you have any plans to introduce Disney character themed bears? I’ve seen the Toy Store outfits in store, but is there any possibility of a Micky, Goofy or Donald?

We already have lots of Disney-themed merchandise in our stores, especially special-edition products around movie launches. We also have Disney character bears in the Disneyland store in Anaheim USA but they’re limited to that store.  We don’t have any immediate plans to roll this out further.

  • How many bears do you have in your house?

I couldn’t count! At least a couple of hundred; I love them all.

  • What is Build-A-Bear Workshops most popular bear?

The most popular bear is always changing; the monkey and bunny are always popular but it’s often influenced by films coming out and other fashion trends of the moment.

  • Who came up with the idea for the carry case?

I came up with the cub condo idea; I’ve always been inspired by innovative packaging like the Tiffany little blue box, and the McDonald’s Big Mac box. When I started thinking about it I knew that bears should live in a house so this seemed like the perfect idea; it was important that it has minimal packaging and is recyclable too.

We then were given the opportunity  to make our own bears, Caz the PR for Build-A-Bear kindly let us make one for Caitlyn,Ellie and George who were all unwell at home and were sad they could join in.

Here is Toby and me dressing the bears with Bearamy

Here is Toby with the finished bears:

Hot Dog Rob, Grease Monkey Toby, Scuba George and Ellie Belle

We had a great day and want to say thank you to everyone at Build-A-Bear Bluewater especially Rob who help choose the outfits and dress the bears.

Now for the Giveaway

I have a signed copy of Maxine’s book “The Bear Necessities of Business” to giveaway

To enter just leave me a comment to say you would like to enter

This giveaway ends 15th July at midnight. Open to UK residents only.

A Sunday Through the Park

Every Sunday Caitlyn and Ellie go swimming. Today Caitlyn went to see the preview of Cars 2 with Gizmodad so Ellie and I went swimming but walked there through the park.

I felt as though I was on holiday, the sun was shining the birds were singing and there was a lovely perfume of flowers.

Walking through the park was lovely as we didn’t meet a soul until we reached the boating lake, when we finally passed people they all said hello and smiled at us, which is rather unusual. We reached the other end of the park and we could hear drums, to my surprise there was a marching band practising their music – I didn’t know Hornchurch or Havering had a marching band so we sat and watched them for a little while.

We were quite early to our swimming lesson so we made a pitt stop at the swings which Ellie loved.

We then went to our swimming lesson and I walked home while Ellie slept in the buggy.

Lovely morning had by all.

 

JML Celebrates it’s 25th Birthday – Giveaway ( closed )

Did you know that in July, JML are celebrating their 25th birthday? Over the last 25 years they have brought more than 1,400 products to the high street and have brought such classics as the Snuggie and the Ped Egg to the high street. They’ve teamed up with thescrummymummy.co.uk to offer some fantastic prizes for you – do you want to decide whether it will be a one bundle or do you want to send the prizes out individually?

Their ironing board cover will be up for grabs. It comes in several different designs and reflects heat so that ironing is considerably quicker.  The Ped Egg, a cheese-grater for your feet, is also part of the giveaway. Sitting alongside these will be the Magic Eraser, a sponge block that you simply dip in water to clean spills and mess. The Sit Right is also available – it’s a backrest for your chair.

I have some great prizes up for grabs for one winner – the Sit Right, a Doktor Power Magic Eraser, an Ironing Board Cover and the amazing Ped Egg!

Check out JML on the 4th between 12.30 and 2.30 – they’ll have a birthday surprise for everyone!

Here’s how you can enter:

(a) Follow my blog on Google Friends Connect and then leave a comment below saying that you have done this. If you are already a follower then please leave your follower name.
(b) ‘Like’ the JML page http://www.facebook.com/JMLDirect

For additional entries

  • Tweet: #Win with @thescrummymummy and @JML_Direct http://goo.gl/tsBwS
  • Comment on one of my other posts

Leave a comment for each additional entry you do.

This giveaway will finish 15th July and open to UK residents only.