Saturday, 29 September 2012

Why I love twitter!

The other day hubby commented on how much I have been on my phone recently. I have to admit I'm on it a lot and most of the time I'm on twitter.

The reasons I love twitter so much are:
1) its a great way of communicating with people that have the same interests as me, mainly crafters and new mums! I've even met some of them and hope to meet more in the future.
2) some of the people on there actually care. People i know always ask me how Xander is, very few people ask how I am. That's not the case on twitter! I have some very lovely followers, some who I would consider friends.
3) some people on twitter give great advice especially when it comes to baby advice. You post a question and get an almost instant answer!
4) in the middle of the night when you're doing a night feed you have company! There's always mummy's on there doing the same thing as you!
5) the fab retailers on there! I love the unique products people sell especially the handmade items!

Why do you love twitter? Leave a comment below!

Friday, 28 September 2012

REVIEW: Cwtchbugs Dribble Bib

There's lots of retailers on Twitter but @cwtchbugs is by far one of my favourites! Their etsy shop is well stock with lots of beautiful handmade items!

If I had my way Xander would only wear handmade items. I love the fact that he's wearing things that are unique and different. That's why I was delighted when Cwtchbugs offered to send me one of their gorgeous dribble bibs to review with Xander.

My hubby doesn't get enthusiastic much about baby clothes but when he saw the cwtchbugs dribble bib on the table with the bright bold aeroplane design he even commented on how cool it was! Now that's a compliment! Cwtchbugs couldn't have picked a better design to send, hubby is a qualified aeronautical engineer and loves aeroplanes!

The bib itself did not only look trendy but it was also practical! Really absorbent and the milk didn't seep through onto Xanders clothes.The bib fastens with poppers and there are two poppers allowing you to adjust the bib to fit your baby. The bib didn't quite tuck under Xanders neck (see photo above) and did get in the way a little when feeding him, but that may have been because he is a little fidget when being fed!!

All in all we really liked the cwtchbugs dribble bib and strongly recommend you check out their online store. Not only is there a range of unique designed bibs but also crocheted items and teething rings. These items would make lovely gifts for a baby shower, new baby or even for Christmas!

We recieved this product free for the purpose of this review. All opinions displayed are our own.

Wednesday, 26 September 2012

The Second Trimester (Part 2)

The second half of the second trimester wasn't as enjoyable! On a high from the 20 week scan and finding out we was having a boy, all of a sudden things dramatically changed.

The weekend after the scan was mothers day. I agreed to babysit my 10 year old sister and my brother overnight so my mum could have a night off. We had a really enjoyable night but the next morning I woke up and felt terrible. The room was spinning, I was dizzy and I couldn't stop being sick. Hubby didn't know what to do, and I was scared. In the end hubby called up my mum who rushed over and insisted he took me to hospital.

Fortunately it turned out I had a virus but it had caused me to be severely dehydrated and I ended up in hospital for four days hooked up on a drip. The only advantage of being in there was that I got to hear baby's heartbeat two or three times a day!

I saw this illness as a sign that I needed to slow down a bit. Work had been hectic and stressful. I needed to slow down the pace. Easier said than done being a teacher work is non-stop, but I made sure I had my breaks, a good lunch and went home on time.

Pregnant ladies, remember the most important thing is you and your baby. Don't take on too much and look after yourself. It's really important! I fell into the trap of thinking because I felt great in myself (compared to the first trimester) I could push it, but it's really not worth it. Take care.

I would love you to share your second trimester stories. Please feel free to leave a comment below

Tuesday, 25 September 2012

REVIEW: MyPocketBuddy Hand Sanitizer

My Pocket Buddy seems to have hit Twitter by storm, recruiting bloggers up and down the land to review their new product: my pocket buddy on-the-go hand sanitizer and I was one of the lucky bloggers asked to give it a try!!

This offer could not have come at a better time for me because I was coming to the end of the bottle of hand sanitizer that I keep in the nappy bag (which if I'm honest I didn't really like it as it had a very strong smell to it.)

I've always used hand sanitizer but it has become a staple item in my life since the arrival of Xander and a bottle of hand sanitizer comes with us everywhere i go, usually packed into the nappy bag. Well, if your nappy bag is anything like mine - packed to the rafters with far too much stuff (just in case) you will be please to see that My Pocket Buddy is compactly packaged in a unique, compact pen style design which doesn't take up too much room!:

As far as i'm concerned it is the perfect hand sanitizer for mums on the go, it's bright quirky design would encourage even the most relunctant children to spritz their hands and the fab thing is it is alcohol free, allergen free and contains aloe vera which means it is kind on skin as well as offering safe protection from nasty germs.

Probably the best feature for me is how super fast My Pocket Buddy dries, literally in seconds and your hands are not left sticky like many other hand santizers i have tried.

I  recommend you take a look at the My Pocket Buddy website and also follow them on Twitter. My Pocket buddy spray pen is a must have in your nappy bag! It's available to buy online in their online store.

I recieved a My Pocket Buddy Spray Pen for free for the purpose of the review. All opinions displayed are my own.

Monday, 24 September 2012

The 20 Week Scan!

We went for our 20 week scan a day after my birthday (13th March) To me it was the most perfect birthday gift!!

We had another early appointment (9am) but unlike the 12 week scan we both had to go into work afterwards.

On the drive to the hospital we discussed whether or not we wanted to know the sex of the baby. I desperately wanted to, but hubby expressed that he'd like a surprise. We had always said that we'd only find out if both of us wanted to know so surprise it was.

We arrived early, parked up, paid for the scan pics in advance and waited. We was called in and the scan began! We had an agency sonographer, she explained that a member of staff had called in sick. She told us to bare with her as she was unfamiliar with the machine etc.

She placed the jelly on my belly and up flicked baby tiddlywink on the screen!! She asked us we wanted to know the sex, we both said no and then she began showing us every little part of our baby. We couldn't believe the development in just 8 weeks! Little fingers and toes! So cute!

Next she had to check organs. Neither me or hubby could believe how clear the images were. All was going well with the scan until she went to check the heart.

Our little one had been very still through the scan and the sonographer had reassured us everything was ok, but she was unable to see the four heart chambers clear enough to confirm this. She said she needed the baby to move and so sent us for a walk and told me to drink a sugary drink and come back in ten minutes or so.

We did exactly that and ten minutes later we was waiting outside the scan room waiting to be called back in. We waited, and waited for almost 15 minutes more. In the mean time we'd seen the sonographer walking up and down the corridor to another office and talking to other staff.

By this point I was beside myself, convinced that there was something wrong with our baby. Maybe she'd seen something on the scan? The baby had been very still? My hubby tried to console me, to convince me all was well but I could tell he was nervous too.

We was eventually called back in. Jelly on tummy ... Here we go again. There was baby tiddlywink and right there and then movement!! A little arm stretched upwards and then our baby popped its thumb straight in It's mouth! I was suddenly reassured and breathed a sigh of relief!

The sonographer was able to take all the measurements she needed and began finishing up the scan by recording these on the screen. She was just packing up when out of the blue hubby asked if she'd noticed if our baby was a boy or a girl. She said she'd avoided that area on the grounds that we didn't want to know. Hubby asked of it was too late to change his mind!

We found out that day we was having a little boy. A perfect but lazy little boy!! Best birthday present ever!!

(My next pregnancy blogpost will be about my second half of my second trimester - which was quite eventful!)

So, what was your 20 week scan like? Did you choose to find out the sex of your baby or wait for a surprise? I'd love you to share your experiences. Please leave a comment xxx

Sunday, 23 September 2012

REVIEW and COMPETITION: Zippysuit Dribble Bib

It was the middle of the night. I was attempting a nightfeed in the dark and thought i was doing a good job, until it came to the end of the bottle and I went to put Xander back down in his Moses basket and realised he was soaked through. Despite using a bib and attempting to mop up any residue milk with a muslin cloth i had no choice but to change him into a new vest and babygrow. Which woke him up and meant a restless night for both him and me. Quite honestly he may aswell not have worn a bib it was so ineffective.

In my time of need I called out an SOS to the Twitter community, asking if anyone could recommend a decent bib that wouldn't soak milk through and this photo of Xander, my little milk vampire!:

...and @zippysuit answered my prayers! They sent me one of their navy blue star design dribble bibs to test and review!

As soon as it came out of the packaging I instantly knew it was much better quality than any other bib we'd been using and more stylish too!

Both hubby and I took it in turns to feed Xander using this bib and here are our views:

•Lovely colour and design.
•Thick durable material which was reasonably heavy and didn't flap around whilst feeding and get in the way like some of the other bibs we had.
•The cotton used is very soft, so kind on babies skin and this will prevent rashes.
•Xander seemed to prefer the scarf style bib. He likes to move his hands around whilst feeding and some of the other bibs we own restrict his movement by completely covering him up.
•Really absorbent but it held the residue milk and didn't soak through! It was so effective we used it two feeds in a row and didn't need to use a muslin! Saving on washing!
•There was two poppers meaning you could adjust the bib around Xanders neck, meaning it will last until he's much older and fitted much better than others as it tucked in under his neck rather than leaving a gap.
•Poppers on the bib rather than Velcro is a plus! Most of the other bibs we own have Velcro, which is a nightmare when washing them as they stick to all other clothing and one bib with Velcro
ruined one of Xanders cardigans by sticking to it. We won't have that problem with a Zippysuit dribble bib!
•They're machine washable and can be tumble dried! Perfect for the busy parent on the go!

•There was a tiny gap around Xanders neck which resulted in a teeny tiny amount of milk dribbling down and getting him a tiny bit damp on one strap of his dungerees BUT not enough he had to be changed AND i believe this problem would not have occurred if we had used a newborn size so it was tighter around his neck.

Zippysuit's dribble bibs retail at £3.95 for one, a twin pack sells for £6.95 or you can buy a pack of four for £14.50. Before doing this review I may have considered this quite expensive for one bib as I was easily going through 4-5 a day, however due to their super absorbency and practicality this price is fair and the cheaper bibs that I had previously been using could be considered a false economy in comparison.

Zippysuit dribble bibs come in a range of colours, designs and sizes ands my coordinate with the patent pending unique sleep suits (which have a zip instead of poppers) to allow easier and calmer changing. These are a genius idea that I'm dying to try as changing Xander especially at night is a real pain!

I urge you to check out Zippysuit's website today! There products would make perfect baby shower, new baby, first birthday or Christmas gifts.


The kind folks at Zippy Suits have offered to giveaway a zippysuit dribble bib to one lucky follower of this blog! All you have to do to be with a chance of winning is:

1) Make sure you’re following the My Crafty Mummy blog. (The follow button is on the left hand side of this blog - of you're using a mobile you'll have to have the blog on full website to see the follow button)
2) Visit the Zippysuit website and then answer the following question:

Q: What design dribble bib would you like to win and why? (please ensure you leave some contact information e.g your Twitter username so I can contact you if you win!)

The competition will be live for three weeks. No entries will be valid after midnight on October 14th 2012. Only one entry per person. UK entries only. Good luck!

Zippysuit gave us a dribble bib for free for the purpose of this review. All views and opinions are our own.

Thursday, 20 September 2012

Five Things That You Should Avoid Saying

Inspired by My Two Mums list on five things that you should avoid saying to a new mother, I have decided to make my own list of things that bother me when people say them. Here it goes:

1) it's fair enough (in some instances) when people ask if the baby is a boy or a girl, but not when they're clearly wearing clothing etc when it makes it so obvious. Asking once, especially when a baby is a newborn is forgivable but what really gets my goat is when people have asked and then still refer to Xander as 'she' ... Why ask if you're not prepared to listen?!
2) My little boys name is Alexander. We named him this as a tribute to my hubby's mum who sadly passed away. She was known as Alex. It was decided that at the moment it's still a little too raw to have another Alex Tidd in the family so we opted for Xander. Which is a name we love. We always say to people 'his name is Alexander shortened version Xander' yet people still call him Alex. It's not his name! Grrrrrrrrr
3) This one I stole from My Two Mums: Don’t stop me and refer to Xander as ‘new' It makes him sound like an inanimate object.
4) When hubby is looking after our son don't ask me if he's babysitting. Teenagers babysit, fathers do not!!
5) Why do people ask if babies are 'good'?! Surely all babies are good, how can they be bad?!

Has this list inspired you? Why not write your own?! It's good to vent!!

REVIEW:Newborn Photoshoot by Frazer Alexander Photography

When Frazer Alexander Photography contacted me in my final trimester and asked if I would like to review a newborn photo-shoot I just could not resist.

As you well know, babies change so much from when they are first born and are changing literally every day, we often have pictures taken of when they are a few months old but very those precious Newborn days are rarely professionally captured. As parents, we rely on taking candid pictures ourself or by friends and family. It's such a shame to not record this short but amazing stage of your little ones life!

With Frazer Alexander Photography, the idea is that you make a provisional booking within a week of your due-date, so they can schedule your session correctly, of course they don't expect you to know exactly when baby will arrive but the session needs to ideally take place before the baby is 14 days old, this is for a variety of reasons. Babies at this stage are still "curly from the womb", they sleep better and don't suffer from colic or baby acne and perhaps most importantly, they are still very much Newborn looking.

Joanne offers both home visits (available depending on distance) as well as studio shoots.

The studio is based in Kenley, Surrey which is close to junction 6 off M25 (CR8 post code). They supply all blankets and props including swaddle blankets and they aim for a very much home from home type service, where Mums can come along with dad's or a Grandma or Friend.

For Xanders shoot Joanne came along to the house along with her assistant Lucy. I was amazed by the amount of props they managed to squeeze in their car - backdrops, flooring options, massive beanbag, throws and knitted costumes. Joanne assured me this was just a small selection of available props and they have even more back at the studio!

They have to allow for an entire day for a newborn shoot, as the baby is the priority, they wait till the baby goes off into a deep sleep and this can take hours. It actually took four hours for Xander to get into a deep enough sleep before the photoshoot could even begin. Joanne and Lucy remained completely patient and continually reassured me that they would get the perfect pictures.

Their calm and reassuring attitude is what makes the newborn photo experience with Frazer Alexander so special. They dedicate a day to Mummy and Baby. They don't want Parents to feel pressured whatsoever and it is very clear that the baby's comfort and safety is their number one priority. They came armed with blankets to wrap Xander in to keep him warm and even a portable heater. I was also impressed with their use of hand sanitizer before handling him. As Joanne herself says "Our mantra is safety comes first, along with baby and Mummy."

After several hours, Xander dropped off into a deep sleep and below is one of the beautiful images Joanne captured.

This images in my opinion depicts my gorgeous little boy, his personality and mannerisms. Joanne achieves this by allowing the time to get to know you and your baby, not doing a rush job like some other photographers.

My prized possessions (hubby and baby aside) are the boxes of photos, photo albums and scrapbooks I own. Each photo depicts a memory, feeling or experience that I can cherish for ever. Photos explain our past, allow us to celebrate the present and are a memento we can pass to future generations. I have a beautiful collection of photographs of Xander that capture his earliest days and I will cherish these forever. I'd like to thank Joanne and Lucy for their professional and personal service!

A special offer:

Frazer Alexander Photography are currently offering a deal whereby for £250, bookings that are made before 31 October 2012 for future babies, get the day's session and their 10 favourite images, fully retouched on a High Resolution Disc. This means that rather than buying individual prints, Parents can buy the disk to make pictures themselves. They do offer Professional Printing (that high street printers are unable to match quality wise) and canvas, professional books for babies, but they are also conscious that while other Newborn specialists would allow you to buy a disc, you would alone be paying in excess of £600 and with Christmas coming up, its a great promotion to take advantage of!

Contact Joanne today for more information or to make a booking:
Twitter: @frazeralexphoto
Tel: 020 3186 3087
M: 07716 825 481

Joanne also offers other types of photoshoots. See her website for details.

We recieved this photoshoot free for the purpose of review. All views expressed are my own.

Guest Blogger: Grans Tips For New Mums

The article below has kindly been written by Shirley (@sdcrafts) She shares some wise words for all us new mums out there. I have already taken her advice. Take a read and let us know what you think, maybe leave a comment below:

The thing is, Grans say they know best. In fact, they don't know it all from the beginning for all Grans were once New Mums - they know what it is like. The most valuable gift a Gran can bestow on a New Mum is experience. Here's mine, for All of You.

I became a Mum in 1981 and again in 1983. It was a short gap and, yes, I did have two lots of nappies as Older Son was still in night ones. But if you've just had a First Baby, you don't want to know that!

My 5 Best Tips

1 - Sleep When Baby Sleeps

Oh yes you can, even in the first few weeks. Yes, you will be upside down with your sleep patterns; yes, New Baby will be demanding, an alien in the nest, so new that you are thrown into a confused spin of emotional hormones. And you are lactating, healing, the centre of New Baby's attention.

You are Everything. Neglect your sleep at your peril. But How, you wail. Simple. Sleep when Baby sleeps. Always - right through the Day and those precious snatches of the night. Only break this pattern for essential and limited friends & family visits and medical appointments.

Everything else can go hang. Your priority is to Sleep when Baby Sleeps.

2 - Do NO Unnecessary Housework - Just the Hygienic Stuff

If a visiting Mum (now Gran) cannot push the vacuum around for you or peel some potatoes, refer her to me. If your partner is unable to do ALL the shopping and most of the cooking for a few weeks, ditto. If you are ABLE to do ALL the aforementioned jobs AND adhere to Tip #1, you really don't need my advice at all. Go and make a new 3-piece suite and landscape the garden - leave us to the important stuff.

My point is, your New Baby needs You and a Home that will not give him/her dysentery. Your New Baby is not in the least bit interested in ultra-hoovered carpets, plumped up cushions, overflowing waste paper bins.
But your New Baby and You (OK and your partner) do need clean loos, rinsed out wash basins, clean hand towels, a reasonably pristine kitchen. Just clear up as you Both go - that's you and your partner, not the Baby who obviously doesn't yet know one end of a loo brush from the other. Actually, permanent loo brushes are evil - swap over to the disposable kind - I love them! But I am quite sad, really.

So, you need an as-germ-free home as possible, not a palace (unless you have servants). Your New Baby needs you, milk, a clean bum, sleep and not a lot else. Concentrate on those things.

3 - Watch the Pennies

You have prepared your Home for the New Arrival. Well, s/he is here now. Installed, lock, stock and wailing cry in the Nursery. If you have all essential supplies, for the foreseeable future (that's around 18 years or 21 if University is chosen), your Child will not care a curtain hook as much as you what the Home looks like. My 3rd tip is not that you should all inhabit a Refuse Tip, but a home does not need a radical makeover every change of season. Ignore the TV, dismiss the magazines - make a Home not a Show House.

In the first few weeks of New Baby's life, use the things you have already and only buy the essentials - work out what those are before Baby arrives if reading this in advance of Labour Day (sorry to mention that word but if you haven't yet embraced the hard work to come, Get Ready).

4 - Eat Wisely & Spoil Yourself Too

If your are breastfeeding, you need to eat well - all the nutrients you have will go into your milk so you need extra for yourself too. That said, Breastfeeding was the best aid to weight loss I ever knew - I should still be having babies, silly me. That's why I'm podgy in my latter years!

Spoiling yourself means chocolate in moderation and alcohol NOT, unless you want a sozzled infant. I also recall eating a pokey curry and regretting it as I scooped up the resultant nappies the long night through. Monitor what you eat and see how it affects New Baby's motions (that's poo, not when New Baby's first step comes along).

5 - Ignore Me

This one is easy - I have passed on some of my benefits of hindsight, but my two sons are now 31 and nearly 29. So my Early Motherhood is Positively Prehistoric - Things Have Changed.

Still, I hope some of this heartfelt advice will help you understand that you are not alone - early motherhood has not changed at all.

New Babies need You and little else. You need Sleep, Good Food and Lots of Loving Support.

Tuesday, 18 September 2012


Being pregnant and then being a new mum is on the whole a very pleasurableexperience, but that's not to say it doesn't come with any pitfalls. Oneserious issue I had during the final weeks of my pregnancy was extremelyswollen feet and ankles to the point that my ordinary shoes just did not fit mygiant feet. Fortunately for me it was fairly warm (July) and flip flopssufficed but I craved a really super comfortable pair of shoes.

When I came across the Cheekyshoes website via Twitter(@cheekyshoes1) I knew immediately that they would be a product mums-to-be andnew mums would love. When Marcin at Cheekyshoes offered to send me a pair toreview I jumped at the chance!  

 The most difficult decision was deciding what colour to select. Thereare currently six vibrant colours available in the range: Electric Blue,Luscious Lemon, Sparkling Orange, Sumptious Cerise, Tomtastic Red and ZestyGreen. If I had my way I’d have them all but eventually selected the SumptiousCerise.

Next challenge was selecting the size... sounds sillydoesn’t it, not really knowing what size shoe I should order, but my shoes sizehas been unpredictable since pregnancy – sometimes I’m a 5 and other timesa 6. I usually prefer to buy my shoes at a shop, so that I have the option totry them on and wander around the shop to ensure they’re right and for thatreason refrain from buying shoes online. But the Cheekyshoes website provides useful guidance about selectingthe right size for you and even gives you the opportunity to measure yourexact foot size by printing of a measurement contour to ensure you order theperfect size for you!

The website is easy to navigate and ordering is simple, there are lots ofpayment methods available including PayPal. Receiving your Cheekyshoes is aseasy as pie. Postage is a complete bargain at £1.95 first class or FREE secondclass and their specially designed packaging means they go straight throughyour letter box, so there’s no waiting around for the postman (just a treatwaiting for you when you get in).

When my Cheekyshoes arrived Icouldn’t wait to put them to the test. As a new mum I’m keen to lose the babyweight I gained during pregnancy and so have been trying to get out and aboutfor walks with my son Xander. So off we went to Portsmouth where we had alengthy walk around the harbour and shops to put my new Cheekyshoes to thetest.

Usually after an hour or so ofwearing flip-flops my feet would be achy and sore but I found my Cheekyshoesreally comfy! I usually find slip on shoes rub my heels and within hours I’dhave blisters but that didn’t happen at all. The flexible fabric meant that theshoes fitted the contours of my feet perfectly, they didn’t pinch or rub.
Cheekyshoes are not youraverage style of shoe. The vibrant colours may not appeal to everyone butpersonally I think they look fab with a pair of jeans. They are casual but isthat a bad thing?  I urge you yummy mummies to consider buying a pair.They’re the perfect shoes for mums-to-be and mums on the go because they’re sodamn comfortable!


The lovely folks at Cheekyshoeshave kindly offered to give a pair of shoes away to THREE lucky ‘mycraftymummy’blog followers. All you have to do to be in the draw to win is:

1.     Make sure you’re following the My Crafty Mummy blog. (The follow buttonis on the left hand side of this blog)

2.     Carefully read my review of Cheekyshoes and e-mail the answer to thefollowing question: Why are Cheekyshoes the perfect shoes for mums-to-be andmums on the go. (Be sure to title the email 'Cheekyshoes comp')

This competition will be liveuntil midnight on Tuesday 26thSeptember!

Then, THREE lucky winners willbe randomly selected from the correct answers, who will be notified by emailabout their win and have the opportunity to select the colour and size of theirCheekyshoes!


I recieved Cheekyshoes free for the purpose of review. All views expressed are my own.

Sunday, 16 September 2012

The Second Trimester (Part 1)

So, back to the story of my pregnancy. Many claim that the second trimester is much more friendly than the first and on the whole i would have to agree that's accurate. I had hardly any morning sickness and was generally sleeping well... to start with! My second trimester was a bit Jekyll and Hyde. For this reason I've decided to divide my second trimester story into two posts:

The most exciting development for me in the second trimester was watching my bump grow!! The early bump just looked like i had eaten way too much over christmas! But that first time someone asks you when your baby is due because you have a real baby bump is a special moment! My bump grew quite quickly and there was lots of jokes that it was going to be a big baby... although this didn't really bother me as the labour still seemed a long way away.

At 16 weeks we went for our midwife appointment where we heard our baby's heartbeat for the first time. I could have listened to that noise all day! A welcomed reassurance that baby tiddlywink was growing well, seeing that we wasn't yet experiencing any movements.

We started planning for baby's arrival, planning the nursery, researching and buying the essentials (pushchair, car seat, Moses basket and cot) I loved wandering around all the baby shops and buying teeny tiny clothes!

The next big milestone to head towards was our 20 week scan which we had on the 13th March...

(My next pregnancy post will be about our 20 week scan)

Let me know about your second trimester experiences. Did your morning sickness go? Did you feel well?

Saturday, 15 September 2012

Competition Winner: Babies - The Mumsnet Guide

Good morning followers!

Just a quick post to announce the winner of the book giveaway: Babies: The Mumsnet Guide.

The competition ended at midnight. I numbered the valid entries (comments) on the competition post (of which there was 8) and placed them in a random number generator (using

The lucky winner was post number 5:

And the winner is .... drum roll please ...  Muslim Mummy ... who coincidentally,  had her 2nd baby THIS MORNING!!! (So the twitter grapevine informs me!! - congratulate her @muslimmummies) I will email her to get her postal address and send her book out ASAP - this prize couldn't come at a more useful time for her!! CONGRATULATIONS on both your win and your new arrival!!!

Friday, 14 September 2012

Baby Shower Gift Idea: Baby Sock Bouquet

Baby showers used to be an American phenomenon but they've recently become a standard part of the pregnancy experience in the UK. The first baby shower I actually went to was my own just a couple of months ago. My sister and two of my best friends hosted a wonderful day with lots of laughs and CAKE!

Now it seems all my friends are expecting and this of course means lots of baby showers in the upcoming months!! In fact I went to I've just this weekend been.

One of the customs of a baby shower is that you bring a gift for the mum to be and baby and being crafty I was keen to make a gift. I'd seen a few photos on twitter of baby sock bouquets and decided to give making one a go!

The mother to be opted not to find out the sex of the baby so I needed to make it neutral and opted to use mainly white socks and a pair of yellow and a pair of orange socks for a splash of colour (neutral baby socks were near on impossible to find and eventually found them in H&M kids)

I googled 'baby sock bouquets' and found this fab tutorial and after several attempts this is the final product!

The bouquet got a great response at the baby shower and was one of the most unique gifts there! I'd love to know what you think!

Are you going to a baby shower soon? Do you know someone who had just had a baby? Why not get crafty and make one of these. All you need is 6 pairs of baby socks, some floristry wire and green floristry tape, some foliage (which could be picked from your garden) and something to wrap the bouquet in or a vase!!

If i have inspires you to have a go at making one please tweet me a pic: @craftythinker

Wednesday, 12 September 2012

The 12 Week Scan!

At 9am on the 17th January we was sitting in the waiting area of the hospital for our 12 week scan.

The weeks leading up to this momentous event had been very busy (with Christmas, Hubby's birthday and January exams taking up a lot of my time) yet at the same time they had dragged. Waking up everyday feeling extremely sick had taken its toll. Although in a way I was grateful for the sickness as at least it was an indication I was pregnant! At 12 weeks there's hardly any bump to speak of, no movements and you'd be hard pushed to find a heartbeat with a doppler especially if you are not medically trained. But today was the day we would see the beginnings of an actual baby!

The scan we had been to at six weeks was special but there was little to be seen just a tiny flashing dot, but this scan astounded me! You could see every little part of Baby Tiddlywink! The sonographer took all the measurements and did the calculations to indicate whether our baby was at risk of being down syndrome, all came back fine and we was given the date of the 31st July as our due date.

We was sent away with six different pics of our precious little one to gaze at. Here's our favourite one, with a little leg kicking up!

A little tip though with scan pics. They don't age well. The paper they use is not acid free. Store them in an airtight box wrapped in acid free paper to preserve them. Make sure you get some copies of them. I'm wary of putting them through the photocopier, scanning is best or take a picture of the original using a digital camera.

We both decided to take the complete day off of work that day. We was keen to do the rounds and notify family and close friends in person. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE social media sites like Twitter and Facebook but didn't want people to find out that way. I wanted to tell them and see their reaction and happiness firsthand!

For the rest of that day I couldn't stop staring at the little black and white photo of our little one tucked up all snug inside me!!

Tuesday, 11 September 2012

Sad to say goodbye to the Olympics...

Can you believe it's all over?! What a superb Olympics and Paralympics and in the Tidd household we'll be very sad to see them end.

The athletes and games makers have been truely inspirational and have made GB proud!

Xander was an Olympic baby! Born on the 1st August 2012. Born on the day we won our first gold medals! The Olympics kept me sane in my last couple of days of maternity leave and our first few weeks of parenthood, always on and easy to dip in and out of it was a lifesaver!!

We're really sad to see the end of these wonderful events and just hope they really do inspire the next generation. I hope one day Xander will show the desire, strength and enthusiasm the athletes have shown these games.

Xander is distraught by the prospect of the Olympics coming to an end. I leave you with a pic of him in his official Team GB romper suit with Wenlock looking quite emotional:

Thursday, 6 September 2012

Competition: 'Babies: The mumsnet guide'

As promised today i'm very excited to announce my very first 'My Crafty Mummy' competition!

The prize is a copy of this invaluable book 'Babies: The mumsnet guide' RRP £12.99.

How many of you have taken to google to seek answers about your baby? Just this week i have searched the following: colour of poop, constipation, weird rashes and pimples, dry skin, sleep patterns, crying ...  Well, this book claims to have 'The Answers to Everything' baby related, with chapters on pregnancy, starting out, feeding, mums bodies, sleep, food, babies health, parenting, relationships, childcare and work. This is literally the baby bible and the advice is written in a very humorous and non-patronising way.

To get your hands on this book all you have to do is:
  • follow this blog (use the link on the lefthand side) 
  • Leave a comment below telling me what the first thing you would look up if you won the book.
  • Please also leave contact details so i can contact you if you win (e.g Twitter username)
 I will pick a winner randomly on Friday 14th September. Good Luck!!

If you have any questions about this competition please feel free to email me:
Please note you can only enter once and multiple entries will be completely removed from the competition. UK entries only. Please spread the word of this competition to any mums-to-be and mummies you know!

Wednesday, 5 September 2012

The Truth About The First Trimester...

I had such an idealised view of pregnancy. I couldn't wait for people to tell me I was 'glowing' and how well I looked! Well I'm sorry to disappoint any currently pregnant women who are still early on in their pregnancy ... This is NOT the case, well not in my experience anyway!!

I'd just finished hosting a Stampin' Up! Demo for some friends and family on a Saturday afternoon (see for details) and literally every attendee commented on how pale and tired I looked. After they had all left I sat down and thought 'hey, I am pretty tired' and then it clicked 'I'm pregnant!'. I had a couple of cheap supermarket brand pregnancy tests upstairs (brought just in case) and did one: it came out positive! I did the other (just to check) Positive! And then just to be sure i jumped in my car and drove to Tesco brought a Clear Blue Digital (a posh one, with a week indicator on it) Yep most definitely pregnant 3+ weeks! I couldn't wait for hubby to get home from work. The poor man barely stepped through the door when I jumped into his arms and told him the news! His response: shock! 'I didn't know it would happen so fast' was his reply. I have to admit neither did I but we was happy!!

I confirmed the pregnancy with my GP, again (sorry early pregnant ladies/ prospective pregnant ladies) a disappointing experience. You go in all excited, you expect them to do tests and ask tonnes of questions but no... instead my GP asked if I'd done a pregnancy test, was it positive? And then when was my last period. Gave me a potential due date and sent me away with the number of the midwife team to make my booking appointment! Talk about taking the wind out of my sails!

I called the midwife the next day, she was unsure with the dates and especially after hearing that my hubby has a history of twins in the family insisted that I went for a dating scan. She was absolutely lovely and thorough. Finally someone who showed an interest! She told me to call her back when we had a due date to book in our booking appointment!

Two days later hubby and I set off for the hospital. We was going to see our baby. Oh my god! (I have to admit I did another pregnancy test that morning just to avoid embarrassment/ disappointment.) We got there early and sat nervously. We was called in and told to pull my waistband of my skirt down and get up on the bed. Jelly on tummy, right this is it! We're going to see Baby Tiddlywink... But after a couple of minutes of staring at the screen nothing?! 'Oh no!' I looked at my hubby for support and then we both looked at the sonographer dreading the worse. She just calmly said 'You must still be quite early on in your pregnancy. We'll have to do an internal scan.' I looked at my hubby, face clearly full of dread! He didn't know what to say except 'Do you want me to leave the room'. I knew he had to be with me, I told him to stay. The internal scan wasn't as traumatic as i thought at all in all honesty and was completely worth it when I saw the flashing dot that was our baby! A tip though ladies: if going for an early dating scan wear a skirt, less embarrassing all round! We left the hospital with beaming smiles! So excited about what the future held.

We decided not to tell anyone about the pregnancy straight away, although almost instantly one of my best friends guessed. We was out on a girly date when all of a sudden she said 'Your boobs look big, oh my god ... You're pregnant!' It was lovely to have a confidant to share my excitement with!!

The excitement was short lived when the morning sickness arrived! I'm not sure why they call I morning sickness, for me it was morning, noon and night sickness. Work was unbearable. I'm a teacher. I teach 16-19 year olds and I'm on my feet all day. My classroom was the furthest away from a toilet and the nearest loo was a student one! I resorted to a bucket in my office! Oh the glamour!

At 8 weeks, with Christmas fast approaching I eventually went to the doctors. I just couldn't stop being sick. She prescribed me some anti sickness tablets that worked a charm! Within 48 hours I felt human again! Which was just as well as we had already committed to a Christmas themed fancy-dress party the day before Christmas Eve. (Mind you finding a fancy dress costume to hide my tiny bump was a challenge, but i succeeded!)

We had planned to tell our parents at 12 weeks after our scan, but on Christmas Eve I spoke to my Mum on the phone. She was all excited about us coming over the next day. I'm a celiac and have to follow a gluten free diet and bless her she was listing all the lovely food she brought in to accommodate my diet, prawns, cheese, pâté ... Basically everything I couldn't eat. I came off the phone knowing I'd have to tell my parents otherwise they'd guess anyway that I wasn't eating my favourite foods!!

Christmas was fab! I told my parents in secret! Asking them not to share with my extended family until after the 12 week scan. My mum grinned like a Cheshire cat all day and I was treated like royalty!! My dad was equally excited. The hardest part was hiding the fact I wasn't drinking! Possible covers: designated driver, recovering from yesterdays hangover, stomach bug ... i used them all. I'm an honest person and even these white lies played on my conscience, but it's protocol to keep the secret for the first 12 weeks and that's what we did.

A couple of weeks later (on my hubby's birthday) we had our booking appointment. Be prepared ladies, it's a bloody long appointment and you feel like you're playing a game of Mr & Mrs! You need to know not only your medical history but also that of every Tom, Dick and Harry in your family!! Our midwife Amelia was lovely, we left excited and with the date of our 12 week scan!!

(Next post will be about our 12 week scan)

So, what was your first trimester like? Any amusing stories? Any tips for mummies experiencing the first trimester at the mo? I'd love you to share. Please leave a comment!

The Calm Before The Storm...

So, the aim of my first view posts is to update you all on our journey to parenthood so far...

We got married in July 2010. I know every bride says their wedding day was the best ever, but ours really was! I loved every single part of planning my wedding, it was a brilliant opportunity to share with all our friends and family my creativity and craftiness.

From the get-go we decided to split our budget right down the middle and have a modest wedding and then splurge the rest on a once-in-a-lifetime honeymoon. Although we had a smaller than average wedding budget i didn't scrimp - i negotiated every little part and those bits we couldn't afford i did myself.

The sun came out for our wedding day, i had an enjoyable morning getting ready with my mum, sisters and bridesmaids, we all travelled to the ceremony together on a vintage bus, the ceremony was perfect, customised to suit our personalities with beautiful readings from our most dearest friends and family, we had an informal meal (no fancy food - burger and chips, fish and chips etc) and then a super good party in the evening with a fantastic band made up of friends, work colleagues and even two of mine and hubby's old teachers!

The whole day was US and i wouldn't have changed one little bit. I feel sorry when i hear people who say their parents have taken over and has imposed certain features that they just don't want.

And the honeymoon - oh! Well! That was AMAZING! 7 days in Vegas baby! We literally did everything and anything we wanted to!! We stayed at the Venetian (which was absolutely stunning and complete luxury!) We went to shows and the highlight a helicopter trip to the canyon, with the opportunity to land in the basin and have a champagne picnic whilst watching the sunset - simply the most romantic experience ever!

The second week began by picking up a convertible Mustang and taking a road trip to LA through Death Valley - i have never experienced heat like it! (Hubby was quite disappointed that it was too hot we couldn't even put the car roof down - it hit 120 degrees!) We stayed for the next 7 days in LA, Beverley Hills, staying in the Beverly Wiltshire - the hotel from Pretty Woman! The hotel was amazing!! We spent a lot of time by the pool (after insisting that my bikini was simply not posh enough and buying a new one to fit in with the rest of the clientele!) We of course also visited the theme parks and just had a ball!

It was whilst on honeymoon we discussed our future. Secure in our home and jobs we decided we both would like children, but we would wait awhile and just enjoy being married and get any non-child friendly experiences out of our system so we could concentrate on children when they finally arrived.

Over the next two years we had some fantastic experiences. Hubby went on several stag do's abroad - to Latvia and Bratislava (i do not want to know what went on there!!) we had some fab nights out, went to a Polish wedding (and drank copious amounts of vodka) and i had a wonderful, once in a lifetime opportunity to take a group of students on a expedition to Tanzania (i actually went twice - once for a week long trip on a teachers recce and then in July 2011 for 4 weeks with 13 students)

My Tanzania trip meant us being apart for our first wedding anniversary. Hubby completely understood and insisted that i went and on my return (just 24 hours after touchdown) i was back on a plane. This time with hubby on our way to the Dominican Republic! We had a wonderful all inclusive week in Semana. (i enjoyed the luxury after the basic accommodation and food in Tanzania!) Again doing everything and anything we desired - swimming with dolphins, horse riding and catamaran trips to Bacardi Island!

We was laying in bed one night whilst in the Dominican pondering the future and the topic of children came up ... 'Let's start trying, I'm ready' i said, 'Me too' replied hubby... three months later i pee'd on that white stick and it was positive!! I'm Pregnant!! The journey had begun...

Monday, 3 September 2012

The beginning...

I'll start from the beginning ... it's a pretty good place to start! At 18 years old i was all set to go off to university to be young, single and carefree, 2 months before the start of term i met a boy and went on a date or two ... 10 years later we're still together, married and just last month had our first child - a little boy we called Xander. Life is now perfect!!

I've set up this blog to journal our experiences as first-time parents and hope that this blog may help those who are about to embark on parenthood!! Trust me ... it's not as easy as it seems!!

I hope for this blog to be interactive, a forum for individuals to share their own experiences and offer help and advice to others! I'd love you to follow my blog and look forward to establishing this blog.

(I already have an established crafty blog: - please take a look if you get a mo!)