Wednesday, 23 August 2017

Toilet Training Regression

I have been more than open about my struggles as a parent from having a child that hates sleep to a much shorter breastfeeding journey than I had set out for, lets just say that my parenting hasn't turned out exactly how I imagined it to. So when we recently started full on potty training not long after Emme turned two and she pretty much aced it within a week, including day trips and bed time, I have to admit I was quick to post about it on social media. Not to brag by any means but because I was bloody well proud that we'd managed something with ease and I wanted to be able to look back and remember how proud I felt and remember that we'd managed to crack something ahead of schedule, instead of being behind.

Of course as soon as you hit that button to tell the world something positive, you know for a fact that you have well and truly jinxed yourself. Fast forward nearly three weeks and we've all of sudden had countless accidents. The first being the worst explosion Emme has possibly ever had whilst out in the city centre, I don't even think she had a nappy this bad as a baby, followed by many nights of bed wetting, something she mastered from the first night but seems to have completely back tracked on and I'm not entirely sure why.

Part of me wonders if I've moved everything on far too quickly for her. We started off bedtimes with nighties and going commando so that she didn't have anything to even feel remotely protective like a nappy, in the hopes that she would not wee and she grasped it amazingly with no accidents at all, (at least at first) so I then moved onto putting pants on under her nightie and very quickly moved onto putting pyjama bottoms on when her nighties were in the wash, when maybe she just wasn't ready for such a quick progression.

The explosion however I think and hope was just a one off, it did resemble that of an upset tummy and therefore is completely understandable but with the bed wetting too, it makes me question where things went wrong.

Emme is still telling me when she needs to wee during the day, and she loves to use it as an excuse several time before bed so I know that she hasn't given up on toilet training altogether, it's not that she's taken a disliking to going, in fact sometimes she's quite happy to sit there and have a chat whilst she goes. She has started using 'I need a drink' several times before bed as an excuse not to go to sleep and I'm wondering if she's possibly drinking far too much before bedtime but I don't feel like I can deny her a drink.

The only other thing that has changed since we started her toilet training is that we have been trying to get her to sleep back in her own bed at night after months of sleeping in ours and I'm wondering if maybe I've tried approaching that far too soon with her, even though she initiated the idea as she wanted to sleep in her big girl bed because her new thing is to 'be a big girl like Ella' (my four year old cousin). She is still coming into our bed in the early hours but she goes to sleep in her own bed, she has had accidents in both ours and her own bed.

So where I thought we had been lucky and were sailing our way through toilet training with ease, we've encountered a bump in the road that I hadn't expected. Accidents I did expect, attempting toilet training and having to wait a little longer because she wasn't ready, I expected too but for her to pick it up so quickly and then to start backtracking wasn't something I expected and is a completely new learning curve. I don't want to push her, she's only two and its completely normal to have accidents even after being fully toilet trained but I don't want to completely back track and start putting her nappies back on, so here's hoping this is only a blip in the road and that we get back on track shortly.

Did you experience toilet training regression with your toddler? How did you overcome it?

Love Abbie x

Thursday, 8 June 2017

Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature Bath and Room Thermometer Review

Upon becoming a parent, you have to learn to trust yourself, you have to learn to trust your instincts and to know that you are right in many situations and with that comes a lot of guessing. From trusting that you are capable of taking care of your baby when they're poorly, when they have a bump or fall and trusting that you know when they will need to see a doctor. Parenting teaches you things you never thought you would or could know and handle and it comes with a lot of pressures, however one thing I have never trusted myself with is the temperature of things, bath temperature in particular, which is recommended to be between 36.5c and 38c and for this reason we are still using a bath thermometer nearly 2 years later. 

I have often forgotten to pop the thermometer in Emme's overnight bag when she has stayed out at either one of her grandparents, however it hasn't seemed to be an issue as they just seem to 'know' what temperature to make the bath for her, however I still like to use mine for peace of mind. With the recent hot weather I've been giving her much cooler baths than normal but in winter, when my hands are freezing, I struggle to know what's too hot and what's not. Luckily I have the Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature Bath and Room Thermometer* which ensures I get the temperature of the bath exactly right. 

What I love most about this thermometer is that when the temperature is too hot, above 39c, it flashes a red LED warning light, which means that even though the star does float, if Emme puts too many bubbles in the bath, she's quite the little miss independant right now, I can still see the light flashing beneath the bubbles, meaning I don't have to search for it until the bath is at an acceptable temperature. When the light goes off, I then know it's my que to find the thermometer to check the temperature, so that I can re-adjust it if needed. Emme also loves to play with the thermometer in the bath, which i'm entirely unsure of as to why when she has a million bath toys, but thankfully this thermometer is certified as a bath toy so you can happily let your little ones play with it without worrying. 

The design of the Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature Bath and Room Thermometer* is designed to fit in with your nursery or bathroom decor and I love how simple it is. When I first tried finding a thermometer for Emme, even before she was born, they were all very much pink or blue or characters, none of which I was a big fan of. The iconic Tommie Tippee star design of this thermometer however is much more me, it's a very cute design and the neutral colours ensure it's gender neutral making it perfect for baby showers, those who choose team yellow and to save for any future babies, it also means that it fits in perfectly in any nursery and wouldn't look out of place, not even in Emme's pink and white bedroom.

With the recent heat wave we've been having, it's been hard to know what to dress Emme in for bed, what cover to put on her, be it a quilt, blanket or nothing at all and the hardest thing is knowing whether or not her room is a comfortable temperature to sleep in, so this thermometer has been amazing to have. Granted it hasn't been a very happy star with Emme's room being so warm but it;s meant that i've been able to check the temperature of her room a little while before bedtime and I have been able to prep the room according to the temperature on the thermometer. Most nights we've had to leave her window open prior to her going to bed and put the fan in her room to try and cool it down enough before she goes in there, it's hard enough for her to sleep with the light nights so it's nice to know I can at least try and control the temperature a little in her bedroom with the thermometer to help her sleep. 

To activate the star's display you simply tap the monitor and the temperature is very quickly displayed meaning you don't have to wait, so if like me you can't help but check on them before you go to bed and several times during the night then rest assured checking the temperature of the bedroom during the night couldn't be easier. If like us your child ends up sleeping in your bedroom at some point during the night anyway but you worry your room is too hot, simply take it with you and pop it on your bedside table for peace of mind.

I would definitely recommend this thermometer to all mums, having one thermometer that does both room and bath temperature is so handy and cuts down on costs, which is always a big help and this thermometer is currently on offer in Kiddicare for just £10** which is an amazing price, especially considering you can pay more than that for either a bath OR room thermometer and here you have both.

Have you used a bath and room thermometer or do you prefer having two?

Love Abbie x

* gifted pr sample, please see disclaimer

** correct as of 27.05.17

Thursday, 27 April 2017

Munchkin Travel Booster Seat Review

Munchkin Travel Booster Seat packaging

Packing a bag for the day out with a baby or toddler is hard enough, never mind packing for a mini break or even a holiday because babies and toddlers need so much stuff. We have only taken Emme away once and at the time she was just 15 months old, luckily she was already out of the early baby stage of needing bottles and sterilisers, formula and weaning foods but we still had plenty to pack and i'm one of those people who packs everything ' just incase.'

We have a mini break at Center Parcs with Dan's parent's coming up soon and this time around I'm determined to pack more wisely, ensuring we only take the things we need. One thing we will be taking with us is the Munchkin Travel Booster Seat because I know we will probably eat out a lot and I find it so frustrating when you go to a restaurant and there are so few highchairs that you have to wait for one to become available before you can even order your meal. Since we bought the Munchkin Booster Seat for Emme she actually prefers this to her high chair, I think she likes feeling grown up sat at the table with everyone else as her highchair doesn't fit well at the table and she tends to be a little further back when she's in that. 

What I love most about the booster seat is that it isn't just great for travel and meal times, we also use it for craft time and messy play because it's so much more handy for me to place a messy mat on the kitchen table for Emme to do her activities on and pop her in her booster seat, than to try and balance everything on her tiny high chair tray which guarantees me cleaning the floor afterwards.

Munchkin Travel Booster Seat being used

The booster seat is a gorgeous mixture of grey and blue, so very gender neutral which I love as I know we can use it for future children too. It features a swirl design on the top and side and of course the signature munchkin heart. It has a very stable and secure frame which can accommodate a toddler or child aged approx 12-36 months up to 50lbs so with Emme being such a dainty little thing, I know we'll get our money's worth from this. The frame features a handy little compartment to pop things like drinks and snacks in or sometimes ill pop nappies and wipes in which means that I can leave the changing bag at home. 

The seat has a 3 point harness system which is fairly easy to use, my only niggle is that the straps around your child's waist are quite stiff to tighten, which I guess means that once you've figured them out, will give you peace of mind that your child is strapped in well, i'm just not the strongest person and I do struggle with them. The chair straps also double up as a shoulder strap which I think is such a unique design, this means it's so easy to carry and it's really lightweight too which will be amazing for a place like Center Parcs where we could be walking around all day but still want to take it along for when we decide to stop at a restaurant.

Munchkin Travel Booster Seat compartment

The material is wipeable and so easy to clean, I may have accidentally thrown a whole cup of coffee over this and the nice cream chair it was on top of and luckily they both came clean straight away so you can just take my word on that one.

This was one of those items that Dan insisted on buying and initially I wasn't too bothered about as I simply didn't think we needed it, however we have had so much use out of it already and it get's way more use than our highchairs so it has definitely been worth the money! I would highly recommend it to all parents and parents to be.

Do you have a travel booster seat? Have you tried the Munchkin one?


Abbie x

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Monday, 30 January 2017

You Are My Sunshine #1

I often use my blog and social media as a way of sharing both the highs and lows of motherhood but I can sometimes feel like I'm moaning a little too much. I love motherhood and having children is the only thing I ever knew I wanted in life, my baby girl really is my pride and joy! The one job I feel I am succeeding at in some way is being her mum and although I don't always get it right, in fact Im pretty sure I screw it up completely some days/weeks/months compared to others but when I look at how funny, clever and happy my baby girl is, I know I must be doing something right! So I wanted to start a new series every week in which I share what Emme did that made me proud that week, whether that's learning a new word, staying in her own bed a little longer than usual or even just going to the shops without throwing a tantrum. Ive decided to call the series 'You Are My Sunshine' because the song is close to my heart and my daughter really is my sunshine on a cloudy day!

You Are My Sunshine #1

This week Emme has said so many new words and she has become so obsessed with stickers just lately, which I think is pretty standard at her age and although I find them everywhere, including her nappy! I swear I can find more in Emmes nappy than my bloody handbag! However they are pretty inexpensive and they keep her entertained for ages so I quite like that she likes stickers! A few days ago she was putting her stickers in her book and as she put one on the page she said 'all done' and it was just the cutest thing! I have no idea where she learnt that phrase but I love it!

One of her new favourite things to do is say 'jump' and then she bends her knees and lifts up abruptly, not quite lifting her feet off the ground but up to her tiptoes and she giggles with laughter each time. She especially loves it when mummy and daddy join in jumping and she jumps around the room, giggling and shouting and I honestly love how something so simple can make her so happy! She really does make me so proud!

Whenever Dan has a busy month at work, Emme stops wanting him to do things with her, don't get me wrong, she still collars him into playing with her princess castle and she'll give him kisses for choc choc but when it comes to getting dressed or going to bed and daddy wants to do it, all you hear is 'no, mummy' and it becomes so hard for all of us. Dan starts to get a little disheartened when he can't help out, Emme becomes frustrated and upset and I find it hard that when Dan wants to help out and take over that Emme won't allow him to. This week I've found that instead of asking 'is daddy going to take you to bed' and giving her that option, it's been more effective to just say 'give me a kiss sweetie, daddy's taking you to bed, na-night' and because we take that option of choice away, she has just been accepting it and giving me a kiss before taking her daddy's hand to go to bed. The tantrum and tear free bedtimes have been so much nicer and I love that they have been having more time together to bond because when Dan works so much, that time becomes rare.

At the weekend Dan and Emme were playing with her princess castle, I was cooking tea and I could hear them saying 'na-nyt' to the princesses as they put them to bed and Emme saying 'weee' as she pushed the princess on her swing, it was so lovely to here them role-playing and Emme is really starting to use her imagination now which is just the sweetest. When I came in the room to join them, Emme had put the swing out of place and each time she'd done it, dan had asked for a kiss in return for him fixing it, she once again took the swing out of place and Dan said 'what does daddy get for fixing it?' And she just came out with 'more kisses' me and Dan just looked at each other in amazement, sometimes I cannot believe the words and phrases she manages to say, not too long ago, she barely spoke a word and all of a sudden she's coming out with more words and phrases each day that just make me light up and feel so proud!

I cannot believe how quickly my baby is growing up and I couldn't be any prouder if I tried!

Love Abbie x
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