Thursday, 30 November 2017

November 2017

November 2017.

I love looking back on these monthly round ups!

How is it December tomorrow?! This month has flown by. We celebrated Leonard turning 2, and Stu turning 31. We drank festive coffee (that was made wrong, tasted gross, and has pout us off trying any more!), went National Trust exploring, had all of Lenny's baby blonde hair chopped off (he did NOT like having his hair cut!), met Santa, and now we're all fighting off colds and virus's... again!

BUT we're all happy and excited, and ready to start getting giddy about Christmas. December is going to be a great month. 

p.s. Is it Winter yet?! It's SO cold outside.

Tuesday, 21 November 2017

LUSH Jelly Bomb - Snow Fairy

My Bestie, Charlotte, bought me a LUSH Jelly Bomb for my Birthday as she knew I'd been wanting to try one out. I thought I'd do a little review because I have to admit I was a bit disappointed!

I LOVE Lush bath products. I also enjoy their shampoos, cleansers, face masks, shower jelly's, body scrubs... but their bath products are my favourite. I love the bubble bars, and the melts (although my favourite, happy blooming, was discontinued aaaages ago now!) and, of course, the bath ballistics/bombs.

When I heard they were releasing Jelly Bombs my heart was very happy. I pictured a warm, oily bath, with a thin jelly layer on the surface. Like a Gelli Baff for adults. With less jelly/slime! And I pictured it dissolving slowly leaving soft skin and pretty coloured bath water.

Well, I was right about the slow dissolving thing. I was in the bath for half an hour after the initial drop in and photo taking, and then, even after leaving the remains in the bath overnight and after two morning showers, it was still there! So it almost felt like a waste of product?! Anyway, it fizzed ever so slightly to begin with, and rolled a couple of times, but then it just sort of bobbed around while I waited for the jelly film to form. It didn't. The jelly texture was split into chunks across the top of the bath. Almost like it had curdled?! Maybe it's because my bomb wasn't at it's freshest (I did wait a few weeks to use it). So I didn't enjoy the jelly - although I have to say it did feel very nice on the skin. and I didn't really enjoy the typical fizzing of an ordinary bath bomb. So it wasn't a very fun bath, which is why I like using them! Also, my bath ended up a murky kind of pinky grey colour. Not very pretty.

Have you tried one? Did you enjoy it?! Maybe I need to try a different one when it's super fresh.


Friday, 17 November 2017

My Baby is [almost] not a Baby anymore.

Pregnancy - Week 39.

This time two years ago I was exactly 40 weeks pregnant with my LennyBear. Little did I know I'd be making everyone a risotto for dinner, having a little foot rub from my Mum, going to bed at 9pm (feeling fed up and deflated), and then meeting my Son just a few hours later!

 Leonard is TWO tomorrow. Two. And I'm clinging on to EVERY ounce of baby left in him. I still put him in sleepsuits for bedtime, and I don't always correct his speech (e.g. he says BAM instead of van, and ONGIN instead of Orange). I'm not in a rush to potty train him, or move him out of his cot into a toddler bed. (I am trying to kick the thumb sucking habit though. Any advice?!).

Leonard 5 months/Phoebe 2 years

I'm so aware of how quickly these baby days go by and I don't want to rush them to be over. I already miss Phoebe being younger and she's only just turned 4?! I'm not sure that even makes sense. I read/heard somewhere that raising babies/ toddlers/ preschoolers is similar to building the foundations of a house. You want a good sturdy start, you need to sort the solid walls and the plumbing, find your way around the house and nurture it to make it yours. Thinking ahead to having children in secondary school and beyond, it feels like they're older for a lot longer than they're young and dependant on you. So I'm soaking all the baby moments in, and reminding myself of that each time Lenny draws on another non-papered surface. [Check out my #LeonardStrikesAgain hashtag on Instagram!].

You can find my Birth Story for Leonard here. 
I've got Lenny's second year video montage ready to go live tomorrow, and I'm planning on filming a bit of his day too, so keep your eyes open for that on my YouTube channel too, if you like that sort of thing.

Thursday, 16 November 2017

DIY Organic Balloon Arch (helium free).

It is so pretty! Still really proud of this.

When my sister asked me to be in charge of balloons for her Birthday party, I instantly knew I wanted to do a balloon arch. I did a LOT of research into the different ways of putting them together. The easiest, the more intricate, the cheapest, the biggest.... there are LOTS of options out there for a balloon arch. After pinning lots of ideas, I knew I wanted an 'organic' balloon arch. Which is essentially an undone structure. One that's not perfect in shape, and uses a variety of sizes and colours of balloons. And to weave flowers through to make it more girly and pretty for her party.

I looked into using helium, but it's expensive. I looked into buying an arch structure - like this one - but it's expensive. I looked into using curling ribbon and quads of balloons because these tutorials are amazing, but they didn't have a tutorial for the kind of thing I wanted. Stu and I talked a lot about making our own structure out of tent poles/ bamboo sticks/ foam/ piping/ cemented plant pots(!) but in the end I decided to go with something much simpler...


You Will Need:
  • Balloons in a variety of colours (this one used around 200-250)
  • Fishing Line
  • Needle
  • Cool Glue Gun
  • Wall Pins/Cable ties (depending on where you're attaching it)
  • Flowers/Vines (optional)

As well as the above, I also got myself a crew of helpers! The night before there were six adults helping to blow up the balloons. My only request was to blow them all up in different sizes. We left them in black bin bags overnight, but you can do yours on the day if you have enough time to set up!

Balloon arch

We were originally going to attach the arch to a trellis outside, where the entrance to the hall was. BUT the party took place the same time Storm Brian showed his windy face. So to avoid the gale force winds we had a change of plan and found a space on an inside wall, so it could be used as a photo opportunity, rather than as a fun entrance. SO, with that, we then didn't need a sand filled ballon to weigh it down, and we didn't need cable ties.

Balloon arch

To put together the arch it took three of us about 1-1.5 hours. I firstly measured out the fishing line to be longer than how long we wanted the arch to be. I tied a big knot in one end, and then threaded the fishing line through a needle, and quite simply threaded it through the tied end of the balloons, and then they were all pushed down to the knotted end of the fishing line by my Mum and Sister.

I chose different colours, and different sizes as I went along, saving all the smallest ones for once the arch was secured into place. We checked how it was looking half way through and realised it was a lot bigger than we thought, but the bigger the better! There was plenty of space, plenty of balloons, and so we went with it. It worked out well because groups of people could all fit in for photos in their fancy dress outfits!

Balloon arch

When securing it into place, I stood on the ladders in the middle of the space, and tied a loop of fishing line around the centre of the arch's fishing line. Then I used a drawing pin to secure the loop in the ceiling, and so we'd found the centre. We then tied four more loops, two on each side, so make the arch shape (it's essentially a really long garland before putting it up into place!), and to keep it safely in place. When we were happy with the shape, we then started to glue the smaller ones in the obvious gaps (make sure you use a COOL glue gun for this, otherwise they will pop! I'd also advise lots of spare glue sticks!) and then just wherever we thought the smaller balloons would look pretty. I held them in place for a few seconds to allow the glue to dry. We added in the flowers and the vines and added more small balloons around those too. I love this added touch, I think it makes the arch look more finished.
Balloon arch Balloon arch Balloon arch Balloon arch

It's a cheap and simple way to make a ballon arch, that's definitely easier if you have two or three people willing to help! I'd love to make smaller versions for table decorations, and you can use any colour scheme to match your party/wedding/celebration theme. What do you think? Will you be making your own?