August 2011 archive
We have been trying out Benjoy’s Munchcup.
This really tasty snack comes in a great cup that is anti spill. The flaps sealing the snack inside the pot is such a simple idea and means that the Munchcup is a great choice for a picnic. We have been taking them out everywhere we go. They have been great in the swim bag as both Ellie and Caitlyn get hungry after swimming so this is an ideal and healthy snack.
The Munchcup is ideal for picnics as it means less cleaning for parents and
healthy snacks for toddlers, whether they are taking a break from the swing
sets or sitting down for a nice lunch. The Munchcup is the first
anti-spill, ³less mess² packaging of its kind anywhere in the world.
Also, the inside of the four-pack package has wise ideas on how to use the
package to make a Wise Owl mask for a bit of fun!
What we liked:
- Really tasty ( I have to admit I finished one of Ellie’s pots)
- Really handy to have in the change bag
- Less mess
- Nice and healthy
What could be better:
- The first time I peeled the lid of I also peeled of the flaps so I was very careful opening them after that.
- It would be great if they came with a reusable lid.
One of our lucky winners can win 2 cases ( so that is 8 Munchcups)
All you need to do is Tweet @BenjoyNutrition and @theScrummyMummy the type of unhealthy snack you would give up for samples of Benjoy’s healthy snacks!
Then leave a comment telling me you have done both tweets
This giveaway ends 30th September 2011 at midnight
It is often the case that when we are looking for a little pampering we forget that the men in our life might quite like a little looking after too. As a follow up to the products we suggested from Boots for Father’s day Toby’s daddy (and I to be honest) have been trying out a few of the products form the Boots Botanics for Men range.
Toby’s daddy is not one for using products other than your standard shower gel and deodorant and the odd bit of moisturiser if he is feeling extremely dry so it was not easy convincing him to give these a go but in the name of science (well, not exactly – more in the name of persuasion) he tried them out for us.
Boots Botanics Men’s Anti Ageing Moisturiser RRP £5.60 http://www.boots.com/en/Botanics-Mens-Anti-ageing-Moisturiser-SPF-15_33339/
Daddy doesn’t regularly use a moisturiser but I managed to convince him to try this out while we were on holiday as it has a built in SPF. He is not yet in need of an anti ageiing product but as with most things prevention is better than cure! The moisturiser was a nice light cream that didn’t have much of a smell. It absorbed quickly and left his skin feeling a little softer than normal. It didn’t cause congestion and didn’t make his face look greasy.
Botanics Men’s Anti-ageing Moisturiser SPF 15 is a lightweight cream with SPF15 to protect against UV induced ageing and UV damage, protecting and hydrating for younger looking skin
Botanics Men’s range combines active plant extracts in carefully balanced formulations to give you the right product for your skin type.
Botanics Men’s Anti-ageing Moisturiser SPF 15 protects against the sun, a major cause of skin ageing while powerful anti-oxidants protect skin lipids against UV damage.
Botanics For Men Anti-ageing Moisturiser contains Ginkgo a renowned tonic of antioxidants shown to stimulate microcirculation and protect skin. Plant extracts at levels that really work, combined and formulated for unbeatable product performance. Naturally.
Authenticated by Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew
Although this is a nice cream the results weren’t amazing enough for Daddy to bother to continue to use it! Although he may think differently when he starts to spot some wrinkles!
Boots Botanics for Men Face Wash RRP £4.60 for 150ml http://www.boots.com/en/Botanics-For-Men-Face-Wash-Normal-and-Dry-Skin-150ml_33297/
A face wash is something that Daddy was more likely to use – I stuck it in the shower and instructed him to use it a few times. Although he usually forgot as he would normally just use the shower gel he did give it a go. The face wash had a lovely clean smell that although it wasn’t a particularly masculine smell, definitely wasn’t a feminine smell. The cleanser had an almost gel like consistency and felt nice to use. It didn’t leave Daddy’s skin feeling as dry as usual and didn’t cause any irritation either.
Botanics For Men Face Wash Normal and Dry Skin is a refreshing cleanser which removes impurities deep-down, leaving skin feeling refreshed and revitalised.
Botanics Men’s range combines active plant extracts in carefully balanced formulations to give you the right product for your skin type.
Botanics For Men Face Wash Normal and Dry Skin is designed to leave skin feeling nourished and supple. Contianing Ginseng Botanincs Face wash gives your skin a multitude of benefits helping protect skin against damaging free radicals. Plant extracts at levels that really work, combined and formulated for unbeatable product performance. Naturally.
Authenticated by Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew
On the whole this was a nice product and it has stayed in the bathroom (which is a good sign) and does appear to be being used regularly so that’s a definite thumbs up!
Although Toby has been eating solid food for a few months now I have found that when his teeth are really hurting him he seems to prefer to have a smoother puree than normal. I was really lucky to have the chance to review some new stage one Organix pouches and although Toby is a bit old for these now, I thought given the awful trouble he is having with teething it would be a good opportunity to try them out.
After a few days of Toby pretty much refusing to eat anything I offered him, these arrived and I thought well that will be a great test – if he eats them then they must be good!
We tried out all four new flavours:
- Sweet potato, cheddar and courgette: Toby gobbled this up. The whole pouch in one go which is more than he would normally eat on a good day. He was still refusing to eat from the spoon but was quite happy for me to squeeze the food out of the pouch straight into his mouth. This smelled quite cheesy but the taste was quite mild (I make a point of tasting all of Toby’s food just to see what it is like) although I think it tasted mostly of cheese.
- Sweetcorn, chicken and broccoli: Again Toby gobbled this up. He didn’t eat the whole pouch but this one did seem to have a slightly thicker consistency and he seems to find these more filling. This one tasted rather nice and could easily be served with some home cooked sweetcorn and broccoli to make a chunkier meal for older babies (I didn’t bother trying with Toby as he wasn’t eating anything particularly solid at the time)
- Cheddar and Lentils: Another one that went down rather well. Toby didn’t like this as much as the others and decided he would only eat this one from the pouch too. Lentils make Toby rather windy so I did try to give him this at lunch time to prevent him from having night time trumpet bum syndrome. Again quite a cheesy smell but a subtle flavour.
- Parsnip, chicken and leek: Toby liked this one the best. I haven’t given him parsnips or leek before (no particular reason) but I certainly would after his very positive reaction. This was a nice consistency, a little runnier than some of the others.
Organix is launching four savoury meal pouches, perfect for introducing your baby to his first taste of protein. A choice of deliciously smooth cheese and chicken meals, it’s the real taste of protein for your little one.
The new Stage 1 Meal Pouches come in four yummy organic recipes: Sweet Potato, Cheddar & Courgette; Sweetcorn, Chicken & Broccoli; Pumpkin, Cheddar & Lentils; Parsnip, Chicken & Leek. They’re tasty eaten alone or mixed with rice, pasta or mashed potato to create your own recipe.
Introducing protein is the natural next step in your little one’s adventure into real food once he’s explored the taste of simple vegetable purées – such as the Organix 100% Vegetable Pouches. Weaning is your chance to help teach your baby to love different tastes and textures.
Try these top tips from the experts:
· Dr Frankie Phillips, Nutritional Advisor to Organix, advises, “It’s best to avoid masking or disguising tastes – you’ll want your baby to recognise the real food being offered, so choose real-tasting foods for your baby”.
· Consultant Paediatric Psychologist Dr Gillian Harris says, “Offer your baby a wide variety of flavours early on. In early infancy it takes very few exposures to learn to like new tastes, whereas in toddlers it may take up to 14 exposures to learn to like a food”.
· Paediatric Dietician Judy More says, “If your baby is refusing a food, offer something else next time, and on another day offer small tastes of the refused food, so your baby is given plenty of chances to learn to like it”.
For more advice on how to introduce your baby to real foods and lots of practical tips on how to help your baby love different tastes and textures download a free copy of TASTE at http://www.organix.com/taste
These four new savoury recipes have been lovingly made in the Organix kitchen and are packed with nothing but real ingredients – all 100% organic. Organix guarantees there’s nothing added that you wouldn’t use in your own kitchen. That’s nothing artificial, they’re just full of goodness so they taste as they should – of their real ingredients. In fact so tasty you’ll want to try them yourself!
Chicken and cheese recipes are the top selling recipes amongst mums. For the first time you can buy your favourite dishes in a variety of yummy combos in a pouch. They’re ideal when you’re just too busy to cook yourself, or when you’re out and about and just want the convenience of squeezing straight onto the spoon.
Each 100g Organix Stage 1 Savoury Meal Pouch costs £1.09. You’ll find them in Asda, Boots and Waitrose from summer 2011.
For more on Organix baby and toddler foods visit: http://www.organix.com
We really like using food in pouches when we are out and about as they are easier to transport with less mess as you don’t have to worry about bowls etc but food in pouches is more expensive than in jars and if you feed baby on predominantly ready made food then the cost can really mount up!
On the whole we would definitely try this again.
We are very fortunate to be able to host a giveaway of these new Organix pouches: Three of our lucky readers can win the four pouches in the new range.
All you need to do it leave us a comment below telling us what your favourite food is.
For additional bonus entries (one entry per action)
- say hi on our facebook wall
- tweet ‘I’m in to win with @thescrummymummy and @organixbrands’http://goo.gl/OHlFS
This giveaway ends 18th September at midnight. Uk entries only please.
Although the summer seems to have very much passed we are still getting (and hope fully will still get some more) some very sunny days. It is easy to forget when it is not really really hot that babies still need some protection from the sun as their skin is so sensitive. If you are lucky enough to be going away soon (as the prices drop after the school summer holidays) then you will be thinking about sun cream for your baby.
Toby and I were lucky enough to receive a sample of Soltan Baby Lotion SPF50+ 200ml RRP £8.99 (but currently half price) (http://www.boots.com/en/Soltan-Baby-Lotion-SPF-50-200ml_1207008/) to try out over the summer.
I have said before that I am a fan of the Boots own brand products and I have often bought Soltan cream (particularly when it is on offer like it currently is (w/b 28/08/11)) as I have never had a bad skin reaction to it.
This gentle and moisturising, hypoallergenic suncare lotion protects your baby’s vulnerable skin. All Soltan sun protection products have been awarded a maximum five-star rating against deep-down skin damage caused by UVA rays.
- Water resistant
- Specially formulated for babies’ vulnerable skin
- Dermatologically tested
- No colour, no alcohol
- Includes patented antioxidant complex to help protect against long-term skin damage
How to Use
Apply liberally 15 minutes before going out into the sun & again immediately upon sun exposure
Reapply every 1-2 hours and always after bathing or towelling
Do not expose babies less than 6 months old to direct sunlight
Hazards and Cautions
Avoid the midday sun (between 11am and 3pm)
Seek shade and cover up
Overexposure to the sun is a serious health threat
Avoid contact with fabrics
Avoid contact with eyes. If contact occurs, rinse immediately with water
I have used the cream on Toby all summer when it has been really hot and also recently while he has been playing in the garden and it has been deceptively sunny. The cream goes on smoothly and absorbs well. I have been very happy with it and would definitely buy it again as I fell it is important to use a high factor cream that is water resistant.
What we liked:
- lovely delicate smell
- easy to apply and not too greasy
- did not cause any reaction in mine of Toby’s skin
- good value, trusted brand
There was nothing we didn’t like about this product. I would definitely recommend it.
Toby and I like to get out and about – sometimes we walk or take the bus but more often than not we go out in the car. Often I will then have a short distance to take Toby from the car to wherever we are going like the children’s centre, singing, a play group or sometimes just a quick pop to the shops. One these occasions I generally think it is too much of a hassle to get the buggy out of the boot and strap Toby in etc only to get him out again a few minutes later. There is often no space to leave the buggy at these places too. I was really pleased when we were offered a Lifft Sling to try out (http://www.lifftslings.com) as part of our breastfeeding reviews as I have never tried a cloth style ling before and thought it would be worth a go.
We reviewed a khaki and black colourway sling. When the sling arrived I was a little puzzled as it seemed to be just a wide loop of fabric. I had a quick look at the instructions and tried it out with Toby. I couldn’t seem to get comfortable straight away and so gave up. The following day we had the perfect opportunity to try the sling out, we met up with Nanna Cez, Sian, Caitlyn and Ellie to go to a cafe for lunch. The cafe is quite small and doesn’t really have space for my buggy and Sian’s tandem so I decided to take Toby in the sling. It is a short walk from the car park and I carried Toby in the sling. I have to say although it was easier than carrying Toby on my hip I wasn’t brilliantly impressed so didn’t use it again for a few weeks.
After doing a bit more research on the sling by going to the website, it occurred to me that I may not have been using it correctly so I watched the videos on how to use it with a baby Toby’s age and tried again. Well what a difference – I’m not quite sure what I was doing wrong the first few times but this time Toby seemed to be much more comfortable and supported. So, phase three of the testing began!
The sling spreads the weight across your back and shoulders so was very comfortable to wear. There are no hard bits to dig in anywhere so no painful buckles in your neck or anything like that. Toby liked the fact he could look around and also the fact he was being held close to me. I often have to carry Toby on my hip as he doesn’t like his buggy very much and this made it a whole lot easier. I could still use both arms as Toby required very little support and I didn’t have to stick my hip out for him to sit on so my back didn’t ache as much. The fabric was very close to Toby’s mouth and since he is teething he rather enjoyed chewing the fabric (bonus that it is machine washable too).
The Lifft Sling is believed to be the only sling scientifically proven to improve posture as it encourages the baby’s weight to be spread evenly across the wearer’s body. Thus, using the Lifft Sling reduces sideways bending when walking and standing, reducing the potentially damaging load on the wearer’s lower back.Lifft encourages a more natural style of parenting, and increased baby bonding due to the physical closeness experienced when wearing the sling, promoting bonding between the wearer and baby. With at least five alternative ways to wear the Lifft sling, this buckle/clasp free sling is great for newborn babies through toddlerhood to three year olds weighing up to 35lbs. With different colour combinations to choose from, and sizes from S, M and L sizes for new dads the Lifft baby sling is fast becoming the must-have accessory for every new parent. Lifft is available through independent baby stores, from http://www.lifftslings.com and is now being stocked in Boots. This follows Boots’ search for the ‘next big thing’ from new entrepreneurs, which will be documented on BBC 2 during Spring 2011 in a series of the same name, ‘The Next Big Thing’.
More about Lifft Slings:·
The sling has no buckles, clips or straps to do up, meaning the sling can be used without help and can be put on with just one hand - also allowing for fuss-free and discreet breastfeeding. Additionally, the sling is machine washable, designed and made in the UK,with materials sourced in the UK where possible. · Lifft Slings: Available in more than 80 larger Boots stores nationwide including Preston and Lancaster, and from http://www.boots.com· RRP £49.99
Lifft Slings is available in the three original colourways: Khaki & Black, Vanilla & Stone and Cocoa & Coral as well as five new Limited Edition colours : Olive, Mocha, Soft Rose, Cool Amethyst and black with green. There is also a navy sling available exclusively from Boots.· Lifft is a member of the Consortium of UK Sling Manufacturers and Retailers which recommends 4 basic principles when using a sling – ‘T.I.C.K.S’: Tight In view at all times, Close enough to kiss, Keep chin off chest, Supported back.
What we liked:
- useful for carrying baby and still having arms free
- small and compact so easy to take with you under buggy or in changing bag
- comfortable to wear
Would be even better if:
- because the sling is bought in a dress size it means it can only be used by the person it has been bought for so no sharing the carrying with dad – if it could somehow be adjustable it would make it a better investment
There are five different ways you can use the sling:
- the front lift where baby is cradled in the sling
- the buddha lift where young babies can be supported to look away from you with their back against yours
- the side lift where baby is essentially sitting on your hip (I used this most with Toby)
- the breastfeeding position
- the side lift tummy to tummy where baby is essentially moved from hip position round to your front – good for a sleepy baby
I was unable to try the sling for breastfeeding as Toby wouldn’t lay down in it as he decided he didn’t like being so covered when feeding. I have however used the sling loads. I keep it hooked over the banister at home and if Toby is having a particularly clingy day I will carry him around the house in it while I try to get a few bits done. It is brilliantly useful for shopping trips where you may be getting in and out of the car going to different shops and I would really recommend the sling to anyone looking for a fabric carrier. I really wish I had owned this sling when Toby was younger as I would have really enjoyed trying all the different holds with him.
My advice would be – watch the videos on the website as they are much easier to follow than the instructions (the instructions that come with the sling do suggest this too!)
Looking for a place to stay in North Wales whilst I went to visit my sister we decided to stay at the West Arms in Llanarmon Duffryn Ceiriog. Reviews on Tripadvisor and Lastminute .com were very favourable during recent weeks. We booked the four poster room at short notice and set out on our journey the following day. Once we reached Chirk on the A5 we turned off for the Ceiriog Valley. A more beautiful area is difficult imagine and Llanarmon DC is a most picturesque village.
The West Arms can be found in the centre of the village and has ample parking space. On arrival we were warmly greeted and shown to our room. We were immediately asked if we wanted fresh milk to make a cup of tea rather than use the UHT milk provided in the room.
A couple of hours after we arrived it was time for dinner which we had booked in the restaurant. The food and service were both excellent.. The night’s sleep that followed was very comfortable and peaceful. Not a sound could be heard. The village was silent in the morning except for the sound of the sheep on the hillside.
Breakfast was of the same standard as the meal the previous evening and set us up for a rainy day on the North Wales coast. When we returned to Llanarmon DC in the late afternoon the weather had improved and a very pleasant hour or so was spent in the hotel garden alongside the River Ceiriog.
Dinner was taken in the restaurant once again. The restaurant was much quieter than the previous evening and both the food and service were even better than the night before. After another blissful night’s sleep and superb breakfast it was time to leave.
Hopefully we will be able to return to the West Arms and explore the area a little more in the near future.
Since having George I have been using the same change bag which is my trusted pink lining bag. When Sheena from MaByLand sent me the floral change bag I was really surprised at how lovely it was, I couldn’t wait to try it out.
I have been able to use the floral change bag for lots of different outings with George. We have used it to go swimming and I have even used it as an overnight bag on a recent trip to a swanky spa. You wouldn’t know the bag was a changing bag, and the funky pattern suited me to a tee!
What we liked:
- Very attractive pattern and easy to keep clean surface.
- Generous size changing mat
- Wet clothes bag
- Useful strap size and lengths long strap for over buggy handle and short straps long enough to carry bag over your shoulder.
- Very generous size meant that I could put every thing I needed for a whole day trip to the beach on a recent holiday.
- Insulated bottle section and small useful compartments inside. I find if they are too big you loose stuff!
- Internal and external zip pockets great for keeping valuables safe and other stuff handy without the need to rummage through the bag, for example baby wipes!
- Perfect size if you have toddler and new baby.
What could be better:
Ermmm not a lot! possibly that the generous size does mean that the bag interferes with leg space while walking and pushing the buggy. But not badly enough to bother you. Would be something to think about if you don’t have adjustable handle on buggy. But I do so it didn’t matter.
Girly pattern may deter some men, giving them a good excuse not to change baby In public, but my husband is a big girl anyway so he didn’t mind!
Overall I love the floral changing bag and can’t wait to use it with the new baby.
The floral changing bag is £54.99
George received a Scuttlebug to try out as he really enjoys zipping along on ride on toys,. He immediately climbed on and scooted all round Nana Cez’s kitchen. The scuttle bug is surprisingly mobile for a three wheeler and George gained some real speed! The bee design lead to George calling it his buzzy bee bike.
The scuttlebug is really transportable. I was able to collapse it and put it under my buggy which meant we could take it to the park. It also came on holiday with us taking next to no space up in the boot. George darted round the caravan and decking like a mad person, much to the disapproval of nanny and grandad who wanted to lie in, but were disturbed by the rumblings of the scuttle bug on the decking!
At first it took George a little while to realise the back of the scuttlebug was wider than the front so he did fall off and we found that his cousin Caitlyn also fell of a few times while getting used to the 3 wheel design.
All in all we all like the scuttlebug and think it would be a great present for a toddler.
We have been looking at products to take away on holiday and we were given this great little steriliser to try out.
Sara took it on holiday with them and found it came in really handy especially to sterilise her breast pump.
I have also been trialing it out at home it comes in really handy when I only need to sterlise one of Ellie’s bottles. The size of the sterilser is great as I only have a small microwave.
- Mini Microwave Steriliser
- Perfect for small mircowaves & families who like to travel
- Great value for families on a budget
- Holds 2 Nuby Natural Touch bottles
- Great for storage
- Sterilises bottles and accessories in 5 min
- Dimensions: 260mm wide, 115mm high and 210mm
What we liked
- Fits in our small microwave
- Easy to transport
- Fitted the pump and a bottle
We liked everything about the mini steriliser
We have 1 mini steriliser to giveaway
Just leave me a comment to say you would like to be entered
This giveaway ends 12th September at midnight. Entries after this will not be counted. UK residents only.
I really do try and provide a healthy balanced diet for Caitlyn and Ellie where I cook them an evening meal, but there are some days when you need a helping hand! When Sara asked me to try the Organix Mighty Meals I was happy to oblige especially because they are designed for toddlers from 1-3years.
We tried the Spaghetti Bolognese and Creamy Chicken which both Caitlyn and Ellie enjoyed, Caitlyn was a little confused at first with the bolognesse as she was expecting sphagetti with it instead of pasta!
The times we used the mighty meals was mainly when I have been working and the girls have been really hungry on my return so the ease of the dishes are a godsend.
Organix Mighty Meals are nutritious, wholesome meals perfect for growing toddlers ready to move on from baby puree with lumps to more textured foods. Lovingly packed full of chunky ingredients you can see and your toddler can bite into. This is real food for your little ones!
What we liked:
- I liked that we could keep them in the cupboard
- Both girls enjoyed the Bolognese dish
- Good value for money
- Great for when I need to feed the girls in a hurry
- Good quality ingredients
What we weren’t so keen on
- Caitlyn didn’t like the pulses in the dishes
- Looked unusual as was chunky
Overall the Mighty Meals are a great choice for occasional meals available from supermarkets at £1.99