As the half-term break comes to an end, I thought I’d do a little summery of our happiest highlights. With Dom working all week, it has mainly been me and the kids, which is never easy. Don’t get me wrong, I love having my girls with me and not doing the school run but being a mum to three under seven (and parenting alone) is hard work! On the whole I try not to make too many plans but I also need to keep the girls busy and entertained. It’s the eternal juggling act.

So what has been our half-term highlights?

The first big highlight came from the lovely team at Marks & Spencer Kids, who sent the girls a brilliant half-term package which included a brightly coloured raincoat each and a fun pack of chalk games. The coats come in a variety of colours and are perfect for our unpredictable spring weather.

Our second highlight came on Monday, when we went to the Trolls DVD launch in Leicester Square. The girls got to meet their favourite Trolls, sit in a Trolls cab and see the movie (again!). Yes, we’ve watched this fabulous film a few times now but like the girls, I’m not tired of it (or the soundtrack) yet. Have you seen it? If not, you should! It’s the happiest film I’ve seen in years.

On Tuesday the girls and I made heart shape Valentine biscuits with white and pink icing. There was a lot of mess but we had lots of fun and the end result were tasty and looked very cute. Believe it or not, I forgot to take any pictures! What was I thinking? I was probably too worried about the mess and making sure Iris didn’t get her hands on the icing.

The rest of the week was more chilled with family visiting and some playdates for the girls. What did you get up to?

 

confessions of a TV addict - find out what I'm watching now.

Please tell me I’m not alone in wanting to snuggle up on the sofa every night watching TV at the moment? It happens every January – although if I’m honest I’m pretty much a TV addict throughout the year too. I used enjoy reading a book and going out for dinner but these days I don’t have the brain capacity or attention span to read a book. And I don’t have the energy or interest in getting dressed up and going out in the cold.

This means that my hubby and I have become very dependent on the goggle box for entertainment, and spend most nights under a blanket on the sofa watching TV. Does this make us boring? Or just normal? Probably both but do you know what? I don’t care, it makes us happy.

On the plus side there are some amazing things on ‘the telly’ at the moment. Especially with the huge choice from terrestrial, Now TV (£6.99 per month), Netflix (5.99 per month) and Amazon Prime. Yes, we have them all but in our defence we don’t have SKY so we don’t pay a large monthly bill for our TV channels, and the beauty of NOW TV ad Netflix is that you can stop the subscription at any time. It also means that we always have a box set to get into or a film to watch on cold winter nights – on top of the great shows currently on terrestrial television.

Without further justification for my addiction, here’s what we’re currently watching and enjoying…

The BBC
Sherlock
Taboo
Silent Witness

ITV
The Halcyon
Bobby and Tina (starts on Friday but looks good)

NOW TV
The Affair
Nashville
Delicious
Victoria (finally catching up on this one)

Amazon Prime
The Collection
Ray Donovan
Mr Robot
Vikings

Netflix
The Crown
OA
Bloodlines

As you can probably tell, we really do never go out! But if you’re off to a pub quiz and need a TV expected you know who to call. I could talk about my favourite tv shows all day long.

A few programs I’m looking forward to coming back this year are; Billions, Game of Thrones (obviously), Stranger Things and Westworld. They’re all amazing and made a massive impression on us last year. If you haven’t seen any of these, I’m telling you’re missing out.  They’re all captivating, thrilling and thoroughly entertaining.

Do you have any recommendations? I’d love to know what you’re watching.

The Fairytale Hairdresser - Kittie Lacey

Let me introduce you to The Fairytale Hairdresser. Kittie Lacey is the best hairdresser in all the land and all fairytale characters go to her to have their hair washed, cut, curled, groomed and styled at her salon. Are you intrigued?

My two oldest daughters have been entranced by these books by Abie Longstaff and Lauren Beard for a while now. We started off with The Fairytale Hairdresser and Rapunzel, then quickly found The Fairytale Hairdresser and Cinderella and then The Fairytale Hairdresser and Snow White. A while later we got a few more until we managed to get the entire series. Yes, we were a little obsessed!

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Let me explain why we’ve been so enchanted by these gorgeous retelling of popular fairytales. First of all the princesses and Kittie are the heroes of these stories, the princes do feature but they certainly do not save the day, which is so refreshing. After all, finding a ‘prince charming’ shouldn’t be the girls’ main focus when they’re 3 and 6! The books are also beautifully illustrated with modern touches, bright colours and lots of glitter, which my girls love!


I think the key to getting kids reading is to find books and stories that interest them, tales that capture their imagination and make them want to read. These books do just that for Lili and Poppy. They both love anything to do with fairies, magic, princesses and witches, and these books are full of them all. Most nights when we’re getting ready for bed I ask them to pick a book to read, and most nights they choose one of the “Kittie Lacey” books. I must adit I don’t mind at all because they’re so magical and always have us asking different questions at the end.

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Last week we were excited to receive the latest edition to the series, The Fairytale Hairdresser and the Princess and the Pea, which is launching this week on Thursday 8th September. Again this is a modern retelling of the famous story, intertwined with Kittie and her hairdressing salon. Here the princess is called Penelope and she’s a chef who’s travelling the world. She meets Prince Peter at the salon and agrees to cook for him and the royal family at the palace as their usual chef is ill. That gives you an idea of how the stories are designed to be modern and very different to the originals, while staying faithful to the key points.

The Fairytale Hairdresser - Kittie Lacey

This morning I asked the girls to pick their favourite Fairytale Hairdresser book, Lili chose The Fairytale Hairdresser and the Little Mermaid and Poppy chose The Fairytale Hairdresser and the Sugar Plum Fairy (which happens to be my favourite too) but they both agreed that the latest book was also great!

We then did this cute little Fairytale Hairdresser quiz to find out which princess they’d be, Lili came out as being Rose the Sleeping Beauty and Poppy was Rapunzel.

Disclaimer: This is a contributed post.

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In some ways my big girls are growing and maturing so quickly. For example, what they’re watching on TV is changing and they’re slowly developing an interest in fashion and beauty, an interest that certainly was not there before.

Thankfully, they no longer want to watch the dreaded Pig but they do still watch Ben & Holly, which I don’t mind as I actually enjoy that one.  Also, Poppy has started taking a real interest in jewellery and clothes, and Lili’s getting into nail varnish, shoes and sun glasses!

Here’s a taste of what they’ve been loving lately…

Lazy Days and NOW TV

Both girls love being home enjoying lazy days, and with all the recent wet weather, we’ve had plenty of opportunities for chilled out sofa days. Now TV have recently launched a new ‘Kids pass’ on their digital streaming platform and the girls are loving it! This afternoon we’ve been indulging in back-to-back episodes of their new favourite show The Haunted Hathaways through our Now box. It’s a US children’s sitcom about a mother and her two daughters who move into a house haunted by three friendly ghosts. It reminds me of something I would have watched as a child (although, maybe not as young as Poppy!).

Truth be told, I think Poppy would have been just as happy watching back-to-back Bubble Guppies or Dora in the City – which are also available on Kids pass.

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Miss KG Shoes

As I mentioned, the girls are getting very interested in shoes – so when these gorgeous, glittery ‘Wild Child’ espadrilles arrived from Mini Miss KG (Kurt Geiger’s amazing new kids range), they were both over the moon.

Lili had a cinema party on Saturday and before she’d even decided what she was going to wear, she told me “…well I’m definitely wearing my new shoes”. She ended up wearing a white floaty top, jeans and of course her new favourite shoes!

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Play-doh TOWN

The one thing that doesn’t seem to be changing is their mutual love of Play-Doh. Given the choice, Play-Doh is an activity they’ll always choose when we’re relaxing at home. Yes, it can be messy but to be honest they’re kids and kids are messy – so I’ve learnt to embrace the mess and their insistence on mixing the colours (which used to give me slight anxiety).

We were recently sent this Play-Doh Town set to test and as you can see it’s been a massive hit. They love playing ‘ice-cream shops’  and creating different ‘flavours’ to ‘sell’ to each other.

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A LUSH Bath

If I’m honest, I never really understood the Lush craze, I found the overwhelming smell of the shops so off-putting I never even ventured inside. However, the girls were given some bath bombs last year and now they’re hooked, and I totally understand why – they make bath-time fun and exciting in a non-childish way. The girls enjoy all the colours and smells that come with the bubble bars and bath bombs. And I like the fact that they’re made of 100% natural ingredients.

lush bath bombs

It does seem crazy to me that my three year old daughter is already showing an interest in beauty products and clothes but what can I do? She’s her own person and I definitely don’t want to suppress that in any way.

What have you been loving lately?

A list of ten things that have made me happy this week

As we continue to wait for baby Lavender who is now two days overdue, these are ten things that have made me happy this week…
1. Having my mum stay with us to help me with the girls. I’m so lucky to have her, she’s been amazing this past week, making sure I put my feet up and really relax while we wait for baby L to make her appearance.

2. Cadbury Mini Eggs. Yes, I finally had my first bag of the year.

3. Watching back to back Scandal. I’m now fully up to date! This is such a great and addictive american, political drama.

4. Watching Lili in her first DramaBuds show. She played the fairy godmother and did a great job. I felt so proud, she’s so much more confident than I was at her age.

5. Listening to the girls talk about their day at the Kurt Geiger, Mini MissKG party. I couldn’t go (as I’m feeling way too big and uncomfortable) so Dom took them. By all accounts it was “the best party ever!”. They had their hair braided, face painted, nails done, played ten pin bowling and did some vlogging…

6. Getting everything ready for next week’s egg hunt in the garden. I’ve got an assortment of chocolate eggs and bunnies ready to hide around the garden.

7. Watching a film called Pride, which is all about a group of gay and lesbians activists that helped a Welsh village during the miners strike of the eighties. Such a great film!

8. Feeling baby Lavender move lower into my pelvis as she gets ready to come out. I’m now a couple of days over my due date, so I know she’s getting close.

9. Long, warm baths. These are such a luxury for me but I’ve had a couple this week while my mum’s here. Bliss!

10. Elemis Bath Milk. Speaking of baths, this bath milk come body lotion is always my product of choice in the bath. It never fails to make me feel very happy and comforted – inside and out.

Have a great week!