The Car-Seat Warriors.

I am irked by a blog post I just read... Not sure everyone will be, but I am really annoyed at how society drums up the ever-knowledgable high-n-mighty stat-batters in their droves with the sole purpose of making those who don't/won't/can't comply feel like utter shit. *Complete with shouty capital letters at you, YES YOU, you fool* I despair.

Let me start from the top. 

I've read a post which was interesting, and I took on board what they said. I disagreed to an extent, but still. Then I read someone's comment which, again, was fine and completely valid as their opinion. Then, however, I saw the OP (Original Poster/blogger) reply to the comment regarding 'insanity'.

"Sometimes the Unavoidable Happens" - a post written by a car-seat blogging lady on a mission. Which is amazing. Kudos to someone so fiercely into the cause of rear facing car seats. I also happen to agree with the majority of the posts and opinions written by the blogger. I am also an advocate of rear-facing seats myself as tests have, indeed, proven that forward facing ones do more harm than good in a baby/small child in the instance of a frontal crash/collision. In fact, in 2016 the law is changing to enforce that rear facing seats will be used for longer periods of time compared to the 9 months we're all used to at the moment. 

The post centres around the law stating that children can travel without a car seat in a taxi and how there is NO EXCUSE never to have a spare and that us parent's "really... really...shouldn't be" OK with not having one. This taxi law is "a terrible one", "verging on ancient" and "frankly, should be re-written". Oh the "insanity" of it all. 

I could practically feel the nobbly knuckles of knowledge poking my rib cage as I read. What kind of a moron would I be to take my child in a taxi without the spare seat I forgot to put in my back pocket that morning? 

Here's my viewpoint - I don't drive. I’d be housebound if I had to take Finley in a car seat in a taxi. When I say housebound... 

Take shopping (in general, around town), for example. If I took a spare car seat with me, were do I put it when I arrive at my destination and put baby in the pram? (I was using a travel system for a while but as my littlun is now 9 months old, the car seat that comes with it is far too narrow for his growing body) There are no places to store the seat I travelled with him in. 

Take shopping (at a supermarket), if I take baby in the pram – how do I push the pram and a trolley at the same time? If I take baby in a car seat in a taxi to the supermarket – what if there are no trolleys with the bases that allow for them to be attached (trust me, they are seriously limited by us), where do I put him? I can’t carry him in the seat and push a trolley. I could pop him in the flip out seat of the trolley but then the trolley is full of stored car seat before I’ve reached the banana’s in the first aisle! 

I have and use a (rear-facing!) car seat when travelling with family in their cars, and I also use it when using a taxi directly to my destination that requires no walking when I’m there too.

I get the point of “back then” and our knowledge of child safety in cars changing and I’m not of the “it won’t happen to me” mentality either. Sometimes, needs must. I’m not at all saying that shopping or getting out and about is more important than child-safety, I’m simply saying that just because recommendations change, it doesn’t mean every-day life does. 

It's far from ideal but sometimes you simply HAVE to travel (sometimes at no notice) without a spare seat in your back pocket. I just feel that if that law wasn’t there for people like me, I could literally be stuck indoors so I thank the law on this one. Until it changes to taxi's needing mandatory, weight suitable, car seats within their shells then I thank the law on this one. Until your ASDA's, Tesco's and shopping villages etc have some kind of PAYG storage sheds or pram bays, yes, I thank the law on this one. 

I don't find that insane. What's insane is how taxi's, shopping outlets or the general public who disagree with the law don't think about people like me but the government, for once, does!

National Breakfast Week

My breakfasts tend to consist of a latte to go, albeit home made these days in my 'Not a Paper Cup' travel mug. Thank goodness for Cravendale!! I can bulk buy up to 2 weeks in advance thanks to their longer dates, so I never run out of milk any more - Long live my lattes!

It's the weekends I love. I actually have the chance to sit down with some hot buttered crumpets and a large mug of coffee, still in my pj's on the couch with the kids. Ahh bliss!

Carson goes to breakfast club at his school during the week. The value for a mere 50p is incredible, he gets cereal, toast, fruit and a drink. I love this service. Not only does it help me get to work on time, it provides Carson with the most important meal of the day and isn't predominantly sugar based - which I must admit, I can become a sucker for. Cereal bars and stuff, urgh, I hold my head in shame.

It's not just me though, as Warburtons recent research discovered. 20% of parents admit that their child's first meal of the day consists of pastries, chocolate or even crisps. Furthermore, a staggering 43% of parents load their children with sugary cereals instead.

Warburtons have teamed up with British Heart Foundation in order to raise awareness of the importance of healthy eating and share essential, and sensible, information on health and nutrition. Over the next two years the aim is to highlight the importance of overall family heart health – including starting the day with the right nutrition - as new donation packs of Warburtons wholemeal hit shelves nationwide.

There are multiple benefits linked to the consumption of wholegrains - such as gastrointestinal health and supplying dietary nutrients as well as being associated with protection against, and reduction in risk of, various diseases including coronary heart disease, diabetes, and some cancers as recognised by the Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition (SACN).

From 19th January until 20th February, for every loaf of Warburtons wholemeal sold, 5p, will be donated to the British Heart Foundation (BHF) as part of their pledge to raise £1million and help keep British families hearts healthy.

There's never been a better time to try wholemeal really has there?

*With thanks to Cravendale for the milk & Warburtons for their National Breakfast Week/BHF Press Release.

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Berry Clever Kids - The community for parents who purchase!

For a few months now I've been signed up to BerryCleverKids - a site that allows parents to publicly rate (or hate) items that we buy for our kids.

At first I didn't really 'get it' when I was rating stuff, but I soon realised it was like twitter. Take a look...

In 150 characters just say whether you would or wouldn't buy it, whether it's useful or useless, any pros or cons you think other parents need to know. You can even upload a PicTip! Once you've completed this teeny tiny form, just add it to a list. 

For the above, I was rating a Toy Medical Kit - Carson adores his (he has actually had a fair few over the years), so I 'have it' and I 'love it', I added a comment to say that the stethoscopes normally really work in these kits, making them extra fun. Then I added it to the list 'Primary School Age Toys'. It took less than 1 minute. 

Before I knew it I was looking for everything that I'd ever owned, throwing my two pence worth in! Then, I started looking for stuff I wanted, or had heard about, and using the general consensus of other members I could make an informed decision as to whether I needed/wanted it at all!

It's been invaluable for me, I just hope that other members find my opinions just as helpful too.

It's completely free to sign up so why not take a look:  Once you've signed up, give me a follow to check out my lists and I'll follow you back to check out yours. Remember, the community works because the more people that give their opinions, the more you're helping other buyers! It really is a simple case of snapshot reviews as and when you need them.

 Follow @BerryCleverKids on twitter   //   Like Berry Clever on facebook

Oh, and if you have pets - there is also Berry Clever Pets. Woof!

Gifts from Distinctive Silver - Review and Win!

You may have heard (you should have, I've been banging on about it for a while!), I turn 30 in 1 week's time. So this is a perfect chance to rave about Distinctive Silver and their range of jewellery - perfect for a gift for any occasion, not just my 30th birthday but Valentine's Day, Mother's Day and perhaps, just because?

As far as jewellery goes, I own no yellow gold at all apart from a bracelet I was given 12 years ago and it has never ever left my wrist since it first went on. I tend to opt for silver or white gold only as I prefer it's appearance to yellow gold, it reflects the light better and goes with anything clothes-wise. 

One item of jewellery that I wear day in-day out is earrings. I love my earrings, I feel naked without any in. I usually opt for a large-ish design with a stud back, bling is a big bonus too. Nothing like a bit of sparkle to wake me up in the morning! So when I was asked if I'd like to review an item from Distinctive Silver's website - I saw a perfect fit for me. Check 'em out....

Described as  "Vibrant blue vintage round style earrings for pierced ears. Large blue sapphire coloured centre stone surrounded by two rows of rounded sterling silver, set with shiny cubic zirconia diamonds." they deliver what they promise.  

Nothing short of beautiful.

I've seen some like this in the likes of Primark before, but I hate the green marks you're left with on your lobes. These Vintage Earrings have a hallmark 925 and the quality shows in that I had no greenery at the end of the day! 

Although not a traditional stud as I expected, rather than having a butterfly clasp at the back, the earring has an attached clasp in the way of a loop around the base of the lobe and back up to the pin, the look is just as good, emulating a drop stud style. Retailing at £19.99 and presented in a luxury black velvet-like pouch they are a stunning gift for any lucky lady. 

Alongside earrings, Distinctive Silver offer bracelets and necklaces too, all in an array of styles and I've teamed up with the lovely guys there to offer 3 of you a chance to own your very own bracelet...

What do you think, you lucky duckies! Which one would you prefer?

Giveaway ends on 22/02 11:59pm. Any entries deemed to be false will be removed and disqualified. So, just enter via the rafflecopter widget below and... Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

*With thanks to Distinctive Silver for the above pictured earrings that I received free of charge for the purpose of review.

Win competitions at

Brighten up your day and celebrate my 30th #WIN

Anyone else have the post-Christmas blues? It's been cold, grey and miserable since the twinkly fairy lights and glitter stars were shoved back up in the loft hasn't it?

Well good news is here I tell you! I turn 30 in a couple of weeks so it's about time I started to lighten up a bit.

What better way to brighten someone's day than by filling their home with bright and cheerful shades of sunny yellow and luscious green in the form of a Spring Meadow Bouquet from

Containing cream Roses and yellow Germini joined by white Carnations, Chrysanthemums and green Santini, the pretty white Wax Flower and delicate Pussy Willow provide a lovely finishing touch to this colourful spring bouquet. Oh, how beautiful! 

At only £25.99 with free 1st class delivery within the UK you can make someone really smile this spring. Let me tell you, if I was lucky enough to receive this, I'd be beaming from ear to ear. You can even surprise your recipient with things like balloons and cakes alongside the flowers.  It doesn't have to be someone's birthday in order to send them something so beautiful, either.  Simply think... just because.

That said,  just because it is my 30th birthday upcoming,  I have teamed up with to offer one of you lovely lucky ducky's this wonderful Spring Meadow Bouquet to brighten up your day too. Yay!

T&C's in widget - Don't cheat, you won't win!

Win competitions at

#WIN £30 Amazon Voucher To Celebrate My 30th Birthday

1. At 20, make a list of things to do before you're 30.
2. During 20's, forget about said list - you have all the time in the world.
3. Moan about having never done the 'L' never mind the 'IST' 2 weeks before you turn 30.

'Three Oh' is on it's merry way (she types with creaking knuckles).

Yes, in 2 weeks time, I'm a real adult.

I can't whinge about never going out nightclubbing any more because I'm downright rude for even thinking about it never mind doing it. I remember being 17 or 18 years old and the whole of the world (OK, a few of us teenagers) were calling one particular establishment near to me the 'grab a granny' club. OH. MY. DAYS. Those 'old revellers' were only in their 30's when I really think about it... I'm in the 'granny' category.

To cheer me up - send wine. LOTS AND LOTS OF WINE.

To cheer you up, here's the chance to win £30 to spend on Amazon (hopefully buying me wine?)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

T&C's in widget. Don't cheat - you won't win :)

Good luck!!

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Winner Announcements!!

After a very... different... Christmas and New Year I am back to my baby that is the blog and first things first there are winners to announce!

Finley & His Mysterious Swelling Hands (and feet)

Remember I told you all that he was suffering from random chilblains? Well after a month of using the steroid cream we're not really seeing much difference so hubs took him up to the docs for a second check-up. Luckily, the GP saw, with his own eyes, exactly what happens this time. When the gloves and socks came off they instantly started to swell, go bright red then purple and blotchy.

Instantly, he decided that he wasn't happy. According to his system it was all pointing to Reynaud's Disease (A circulation problem that occurs in adulthood, usually between the age of 20-30), but a baby shouldn't have this. So, he's getting referred to a paediatrician to investigate as to whether there's anything underlying that may be giving these symptoms. All we can do for now is continue with pain relief when it becomes too much for him.

Whilst the doctor gave no hint as to what it could be, I've popped my Google-hat on and found 2 things that stand out: Sickle Cell Anaemia and Kawasaki Disease. Highly doubting that it's Sickle Cell as Fin's heel prick test was fine as a new born, but the symptoms are uncanny. Kawasaki sounds really scary and thankfully Fin hasn't had a fever of any kind so I hope it's not this. 

>> Note to self: STOP GOOGLING STUFF!!! <<

The doc also called us back to say that having spoken to his supervisor it could be *emphasis on could* an issue with underdeveloped arteries? Nonetheless we should have Fin's appointment pretty soon.

Poor little sausage. I don't care what the problem is, I just want his hands and feet to stop hurting him and becoming so swollen. Being a parent is painful..., pub-8301510335931825, DIRECT, f08c47fec0942fa0