Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Exciting News

Guess what...

No I'm not pregnant, crikey the thought of that just brought me out in a cold sweat! Jeez!

I have some exciting news for everyone, a few weeks ago I got in touch with a great website called Baby Knowledge. They have an excellent website full to the brim with info from weaning to child proofing your house. (something I need to get cracking with as Fin is a mischief maker at the mo)

There is a little section where they feature baby blogs by different ladies and I am happy to say that I am now one of them :)

Head over and have a look - here
You can also follow their Twitter - @Baby_Knowledge
and like their Facebook page- here

They currently have a competition running on their website to win a Bambeano Baby Bean Bag, something I wish I had when Finley was suffering really bad from Reflux and Colic. The closing date is Friday 7th December so loads of time to get entered.

Thanks to Baby Knowledge for featuring me on their fab website! Keep your eyes peeled for more Baby Knowledge updates.

If you are already a regular reader/follower let me know how you get on with the X-Factor challenge? I am always half and hour behind.

Love Kayleigh x

Wet Wipes Top Trumps

Now I know this sounds like a really random post and I'm sure some of you will be saying "Kayleigh wet wipes are all the same aren't they" well I can confirm they are all very different. Some I love and some I am just not a fan of. 

The two brands competing in the face off today are the 'mums favourite' Pampers Sensitive and Simple Baby Moist wipes. 

First off I will just make a note of other wipes I have used on Finley but cannot rave about. 

1st are Huggies Newborn wipes, I know that some mums love these wipes but I just cant find anything I like about them. The wipe itself is very thick and not pliable when wiping little bums, also the sheet when unfolded is also smaller than the others I have tried. When I was pregnant I stocked up on these as they are usually buy 1 get 2 free (pretty good deal if you like them) and did use all of them but haven't repurchased since. However to end on a positive note, they were very moist and held the moisture well and Finley had no adverse reactions. Maybe these are best suited for sticky fingers when out and about. 

The other brand are Tesco Ultrasoft wipes, I didn't dislike too much about these but compared to Pampers and Simple they are very dry. The sheet itself does hold its shape well so no fear of it tearing which Huggies have a habit of doing. The redeeming feature for me was the packaging, the top of the wipes has a handy clip shut lid rather than a flimsy bit of plastic like the others. Overall nothing wowed me but I would buy again if I had too.

Lets crack on.
Both wipes will be rated out of 10 in a number of categories and the winner will be the one with the highest score at the end. Easy Peasy.

 Lets start with price
With wipes if you look around you will always find at least one brand on offer in one supermarket, when I see the promotion I usually stock up because Finley always needs a clean bum bum. Lets start with Pampers, right this minute at Tesco you can buy a box of 12 packs for £14.99 or 2 for £24.00. BUT don't be fooled by offers! In Asda they are just at there standard price of £10 for the same box. Great value! Simple wipes are different prices all over the place, I bought mine for a great price from Ocado. They were on a half price offer for 4 packs for £2.50, but now back up to £5. Then I had a quick gander on Tesco online and they are £2.48 for one pack - wowers that is expensive.

Score Time - Price

Pampers - 8
Simple - 5

Next lets have a look at pack size. 
In the Pampers pack you get a total of 56 wipes which is the least of all the wipe brands I have mentioned, making the price not so much of a bargain when you look at the cost per wipe. Simple have a massive 80 wipes per pack, it still makes them more expensive per wipe but it saves on having to stock up the nappy changing area for maybe one more day :) 

Score Time - Pack Size

Pampers - 6
Simple - 9 

My favourite
I have always been a massive Pampers fan and never thought to try anything else, they are great at holding moisture, soft to the touch and always on offer. I only recently tried Simple baby wipes because of the amazing offer at Ocado and found that they blow Pampers out of the water. I'm sorry Pampers! Simple are just out and out THE best wipes I have ever used, they are so soft, the sheet is big and supple and extremely moist. They are infused with chamomile and leave a lovely soft balm on Finley's skin. Love them!

Score Time - Mummy's Fave

Pampers - 7 
Simple - *10* 

Last chance to get some points, lets see what Finley thinks.
Both wipes are great for sensitive skin and Finley has never had any adverse reactions to either :)
At the moment he has become the worlds best wriggler when having his nappy changed so speed is key. It all comes down to how quick the wipe can well...wipe. Simple has the edge purely because they are a true wet wipe and get the job done quicker. 

Score Time - Finley's Fave

Pampers -8
Simple - 9

Final Scores

drum roll please......The winner is Simple with a total of 33 points! Pampers came a close runner up with 29 points.

Overall I would happily purchase either of these brands again, I will stock up when Simple have an offer and use Pampers in between. I would happily recommend either to any new mums out there. My advice is shop around for a great price and don't see an offer and think it will be the cheapest price out there. We all need those extra pennies, especially at this time of year.

This is what happens when you take pictures of wipes and a baby gets involved! Well, who doesnt want to see them cheeks!

Let me know what wipes you love or if there are any other brands you think I should try and then review. 
Love Kayleigh x

Sunday, 28 October 2012

Sundays are made for...

Pinterest browsing

I have always loved having a good old nosey on Pinterest and eyeing up other peoples pages but never really got stuck into re-pinning.

Well the love has been ignited today, not only have I re-pinned my bum off but I have created new boards and even followed some lovelies! 

You can check out my Pinterest boards here 

I wish I had got into this before Finley was born, there are so many cool ideas for documenting your pregnancy and THE most cute newborn pictures! 

Right I'm off to make a list of goodies I need for Christmas crafts with Finners!

Love Kayleigh x

PS: I have got some really exciting posts planned for this week, more Finley's Faves, My new amazing logo, Nuby Blog Competition News and more! Keep a look out!

Thursday, 25 October 2012

Maternity Leave Vs Work update

I have realised that since I updated to say I was popping back into work I have only done one post, don't panic I survived but I think it was a little bit of an information overload and my brain needed to settle down again.

So how did it go? Surprisingly very well, Finley was perfectly happy getting some Daddy time and from the sounds of things he didn't even know I was missing! I thought I might be this emotional wreck waving off my baby but I knew he was with his Dad and having loads of fun :) Perhaps if he was at nursery this would be a different story just because it isn't someone you know very well taking care of him. 

I walked into the office and it was the weirdest feeling, it felt like I had never been away but on the same hand when I look back it feels forever ago I was chatting to disgruntled managers about their problem employees! Everyone was coming over chatting to me and waving like I was some celebrity haha it soon wore off by the second day.

I wasn't doing 'real' work but some training that had been organised so I didn't have to use too much brain power. During the training little memories of past cases and policies were flooding back, one of the major things I was worried about was how I wouldn't remember anything and look a total douchebag but there was 'geek of the class' answering in detail why employees go to tribunals! I thought all that information had been crushed and overtaken by the sleepless nights and belly tickles. 
Finley wasnt fussed I was off to work yesterday :(
After the training I had the dreaded 'return to work' chat with my manager! 'noooooo' how can Finley be so old that I am even contemplating working properly again. Luckily work and especially my department are very flexible and are happy for me to return part time. I couldn't imagine working full time these days so I have settled on 16 hours a week. That's if nothing changes work wise before I return.

Quick tip here - before you return to work please check out your rights and also what benefits you may be entitled too or even what you may loose if you return. If you have any questions on why I came to my decision just ask :) I would also advise strongly if you are planning on returning in the next few months pop in like I have a few hours a week to get used to it. You will be entitled to get paid for this so definitely comes in handy when you hit zero pay.

From this week I am classed as back in employment but using my accrued leave until January, I have waved off my maternity leave and will miss it dearly but I knew that it would never last forever. I just hope these last few months I have off will go as slow as possible for me to capture Finley's baby-ness just that little bit longer.

I would love to hear if you have recently returned to work or if you decided not too and be a stay at home mum?

Love Kayleigh x

Saturday, 20 October 2012

Photo Love

A bit of a lifey post for everyone today.

So we have been in our new home for almost 2 months now and I was starting to feel sorry for the naked photo frames dotted about the house. The only photos we had up were of a much slender Matt and I on holiday in 2006 - slightly out of date. Off I went on a photo rampage to fill our house full lovely little snaps of all of us looking delightful.

First stop printstagram! Since Finley was born I have been Instagram mad and captured his cheeky face throughout the year and it would be a shame not to display those retro beauties around the house. I ordered the small square prints which are around 2.5x2.5, you get 48 in total which is a nightmare when you have 180 pictures to choose from! In total for 48 pictures it came to $12 but beware shipping is also $12! A tad on the pricey side but totally worth it and they arrived in 4 days! Wowzers!

I also wanted to get some 'proper' photos to pop into frames and give to Grandparents so they can swoon over their grandson. 

I hopped over to Jessops to order some prints - yet again I stumble across another problem. We have too many pictures, we have literally thousands of Finley so it took all day just to choose the 40 we wanted. 

Quick Tip here - if you sign up as a new customer you can get 40 free prints! All you need to do is upload all your images as normal then enter the discount code 'welcome' at the checkout. You will still need to cough up for postage but its only £2.25 - what a bargain. 

I have ordered a number of prints in the past from Snapfish, Tesco, Asda and Photobox but the best quality by far are from Jessops!

Look at those kissable cheeks! 

After deliberating once more we narrowed down what we would pop in our frames and here are the finished products.

I love love love having pictures around the house, it just makes everywhere so homely and cosy, and also deep down every Mum likes showing of their baby! 

My next photo project will involve the hallway and nearly 30 picture frames, can anyone guess whats happening there? 

Love Kayleigh x

Tuesday, 16 October 2012

What do you mean my Maternity leave is over....

I cannot believe that the time has come to wave goodbye to my Maternity leave, well the paid part at least. In one respect I cant grumble too much as the company I work for are amazing with their Maternity pay package, we get a full 100% wage for 15 weeks then the standard SMP of around £135 up till your 39th week off. 
My 39th week finished yesterday *sob*

 I could take up till the 14th January off but it would be unpaid and I'm sure like the majority of families out there that just is not possible for us. However I have a plan of action to get maximum Finley time, whilst off on Maternity you still accrue your regular holiday entitlement 'yay' I plan to use up mine a few days a week so I'm still off but getting a wage. 

Even with all that in mind I am still going into work TOMORROW! My team is having a few hours of training a week for a few weeks so I'm popping in. I'm not sure I will even remember to use a pen let alone study the ins and outs of employment tribunals! yikes! 

All that in mind I haven't 100% made up my mind how many days/hours I will work or even if I'm going to go back. There are too many questions I still need answering about returning to work...plus the biggest questions ever are could I leave Finley and do I even want too? I don't know how I would concentrate knowing he isn't there for me to tickle and talk gibberish to.

*ahem* getting too emotional here

When I was pregnant everyone said time flew when you had babies but I never quite thought it would go this quick. I'm grasping onto those last few days of babyhood as they are slipping away quickly, every day Finley gets more and more grown up his characteristics are more of a little boy rather than a sqeauky baby. Another major reason for extending my maternity leave as far as I can stretch it. 

If anybody has any questions on Maternity leave, your entitlements and hints please ask. I work in HR and part of my job was advising mums daily on their rights :) I also might be able to get you a few extra days leave too!

I best go and get myself prepared for work tomorrow - it may only be 2 hours but my brain is in rusk and sippy cup mode. Wish me luck.

Love Kayleigh x

Monday, 15 October 2012

Baby Tooth Progress

I thought I better update on how Finley's teeth are coming along 

Firstly it has taken so much longer than I thought for them to get growing, his first little tooth arrived on the 10th September and it is still only half the way up over a month later. If you missed that post you can have a gander here

I have tried so many times to get a good picture of his bottom teeth but of course he is that baby that as soon as you move his lip his tongue comes flying out. I had to be like a sniper with the camera to get any pictures so some are a little blurry....plus some are a food covered Finley as I tempted him with lunch to open his mouth haha. 

left tooth is 3 weeks old - right tooth is 1 week old

 The second tooth seems to have caught up with the first, it had a little growth spurt a few days ago - you can probably tell with all the rosey cheek pics on previous posts. I have noticed that the pain seems to get to him for 2-3 days them subsides for a few days. Poor little Sausage, I'm sure I read somewhere once that if adults had to go through the teething process we wouldn't be able to cope as the pain is so bad! 

See how the right tooth has caught up

Now we just have to wait for the dreaded top teeth to arrive, I'm a little sad if I'm honest, I have noticed that on so many other babies that it changes their face and expressions so much, plus they don't look like babies anymore :( But I'm sure if anything it will make him look even more handsome.

Let me know if you have any other teething questions :)

Love Kayleigh x

Saturday, 13 October 2012

Saturday Playdate

Finley has just gone down for his afternoon snooze so here I am to jot down the afternoons events. 

There's not much more to do on a rainy Saturday afternoon other than letting mummy Finley play with toys :) 

We dug into the toy basket and plucked out a few of Finley's faves to mess around with, however he seems to be teething a lot at the moment so he sat and chewed whilst I played with everything! 

He has his own little corner in our living room where we keep everything 'Finley', he has his toys, some of his books and his much loved Jumperoo.We recently bought some foam matts from Ebay to cushion that tiny bum and to protect his little head if he falls. 

We had great fun messing with toys, pressing buttons on phones and using rattles as mini hammers, he is so much more focused with his play now. For example is he drops his toy he will shuffle over to pick it up, rather than moving on to the next bright coloured thing he spots. 

Here are a few photos of his most loved toys

Every little boy needs a Peter Rabbit

And just to top off this already very heavy picture post here is another beauty.

Overall we had a great little afternoon clanging toys together, chewing on poor Sophie Giraffe and laughing at his singing pig. These moments might not seem like much when you do them all the time but I like to stop and reflect as one day he will be running out of the front door to play with his friends!

This is my new mission to capture not only the big milestones and events that happen but the daily 'loves' that we will have with Finley. 

Let me know how you plan to cherish your lovely baby memories :) 

Love Kayleigh x


Thursday, 11 October 2012

Im so fat now I have had a baby...

Well that is a slight lie, I have always been on the chunkier side of the scale but I want to let you know how I feel about my post baby figure. 

Ever since I can remember I have carried a little more 'love' than others and of course I have had the depressed 'I hate my wobbly thighs so much' phase and the Weight Watchers 'Salad for me, I'm on a diet' weeks. But do you want to know why I'm still fat, I love eating more than I desire to be thin. That's all it is, as simple as that.  

I never really gained too much weight when I had Finley, I couldn't tell you exactly as the midwife never weighed me once! Maybe she could sense my fear of scales hahaha but I still fit in the majority of all my clothes I wore before I was pregnant.

The only difference I have noticed is the belly has more wobble than it used too, I'm guessing this is due to all the stretching and baby growing that took place in there. But I'm totally fine with it, it wasn't like there was no wobble before! Plus it reminds me how amazing it was to be pregnant and what my body was capable of.

This is not to say I will never want to loose any weight ever again, of course I want to have a gander round Topshop and actually buy jeans that fit but right now I'm happy with who I am. Every time I get that 'fat' feeling I think 'you only had a baby in January' calm down, there is no rush! If/when I do decide to loose a few lbs it will not be until next year, I want to enjoy my maternity leave and savour every moment with Finley without worrying about loosing inches from my bingo wings. But if you have started loosing weight, wowzers I don't know how you do it, I'm too much of a snacker whilst not in work!

I'm making a stand for all those mums out there that haven't lost their baby weight, that don't have time to exercise every day and those that are actually proud of their wider hips and post baby glow.

What does annoy me is the press - the amount of pressure mums feel to spring back into shape within a matter of weeks is madness. They bombarded us with images of perfect looking women 3 weeks after birth, Louboutins on, full face of make up, hair washed and curled! How? Finley is 9 months old and I would say 90% of the time my hair is in a top knot and I have comfy pants on. Jessica Simpson is a perfect example, the press blasted her for gaining weight with her daughter and now they are all praising her for loosing so much weight so quickly, I'm sure if we all got paid 4 million dollars we would do it too.

Rant over :) I just wanted to say there is no rush or panic to look like you used too, but if you have managed to loose your weight that's amazing...I couldn't do it yet. All i'm trying to say is embrace whoever you are and once you have done that you will be so much happier. The chub-spiration pictures I have posted all through the post are courtesy of Pinterest.

If you have read this and want to tweet me its @beautylifebaby and make sure to #loveyourchub

I would be very interested to hear your views on this topic and if you have lost any weight since giving birth, how did you do it? 

Love Kayleigh x

Sunday, 7 October 2012

Online Window Shopping

So it's Saturday night, X-factor is on, Matt and I have had our ritual weekly takeaway and Finley is sound asleep snoozing in bed. I have been pondering all day on what to write about, there are just too many ideas whirling around in my head to focus on a review or update. So I have opted to deviate from the plan and go for a 'wish list' post. **It's now Sunday morning, I think I jinxed myself by writing the words 'Finley is sound asleep', and after 5 minuets he woke up**

If your anything like me when you browse online you will click 'add to basket' on loads of lovely items, filling your virtual basket to the brim with goodies galore then at the last minute you think 'hmmmm do I really need this?'  and click off the page leaving your basket of treats behind. *sad face*

After browsing for about an hour online at Next and then seeing the almost bank busting checkout price I bottled it and decided to post all my lovelies here instead. 

Here are a selection of what 'would have been' some of Finleys A/W12 wardrobe. 

As he is only just wearing 9-12 months clothes I think I may hold of purchasing until he gets a little fatter and is wearing 12-18 months, at least that way I know he is getting 6 months wear out of everything, especially if your spending nearly £72 wowzers! He has everything he needs until he hits 1 but I just cant stop myself swooning over beauties like these.

I'm not usually one for buying masses of brand new clothes for Finley but I thought I would share what I would get if we had the pennies sat in the bank. For now I will head back over to the much more bank friendly website Ebay to get a few baby bargains :)

Let me know if you daydream about all the lovely baby clothes online? Or if you stick to  mainly second hand like me? 

Love Kayleigh x

Thursday, 4 October 2012

Cripes what has happened to my babies face?

Look at that little face, I cant even remember him being so tiny and squishable.
Today I wanted to let you all know about baby acne and how it effected Finners. 

One morning I woke up and all of a sudden I noticed these tiny little red lumps on Finley's cheeks, they looked like little like heat lumps but were more raised....just like spots I suppose. He didn't seemed phased by it and the health visitor confirmed it was nothing to worry about. Later that evening in his bubbly bath when I was washing his hair tiny flecks of skim were peeling off his head, like a shedding snake. As I washed his face the same was happening. As usual I took to the Internet 'what is this, why does he have it, is it my fault' I'm surprised my laptop keys haven't worn out. 

From the research I did he had a combo of baby acne and cradle cap that spread from his head to his face. 

  He was just over 3 1/2weeks old in the picture and I would say this was the worst it ever got.
Cradle Cap and Baby Acne both appear in the first couple of weeks after birth but can last a while - some people have said anything from weeks to years. Luckily for us Finley's was only a few weeks, and the worst of it cleared up in a few days. Fun fact for you - some scientist say that Baby Acne can be caused by a surge of hormones at the end of pregnancy that lead to the break out....hmmmm what do you think?

We managed his cradle cap by using Dentinox Cradle Cap shampoo. It was exactly like normal baby shampoo and he had no adverse reactions. The smell was fine....unlike their colic drops - I'm surprised people even buy those! After a couple of washes it seemed to improve and he wasn't peeling half as much :) A very cool alternative is expressed Breast Milk :)

Finley was looking less like a scaly lizard and mummy stopped panicking. The acne did take slightly longer to heal but I think this is down to him catching the spots with his tiny fingers.

After all the worry he was back to normal within 1 month looking as cheeky as ever. 

So any worried mums out there reading this now don't fret, it will get better but if your really worried just pop him/her to the doctors for a look....don't ever feel put off seeing your GP that is what they are there for :) 

Let me know if you had a similar experience to this or even if your baby had this later on in life? 

Love Kayleigh x


Wednesday, 3 October 2012

Finleys Mega Manicure Tip

I don't know if all babies have superhuman fingernails that grow at the speed of light or if it is just Finley. I wanted to share my secret on how to give your baby the perfect safe manicure.

When Finley was tiny I was far too nervous to use nail clippers anywhere near his wavy, jumpy newborn hands so I just bit the little tips of his nails off after his bath. He never used to mind and because he was asleep most of the time he didn't even know it was happening. 

My challenge began when he became aware of what I was trying to do, pulling his hands away thinking I was playing some weird hand game. I thought to myself, if I file my nails then why shouldn't I file Finley's? 

Hmmmm now to grab an emery board and get cracking....I thought. Boots sell teeny tiny little emery boards but they are still very rough to the touch and with his nails being so thin they bend as soon as you push against them. 

On a quick side note soon after giving birth I randomly stopped biting my nails, I'm not sure why it was just one of those things that happened. Maybe because I didnt have chance to bite them holdinf/feeding a baby 24/7 haha. Because of my new found nail love Matthew treated me to some products from Leighton Denny. In the set he got me was this Crystal Nail File. Hmmmm I had an idea. 

 The file itself is brilliant, smooth, sleek and easy to use. It comes in an aluminium case so you can carry it around in your bag with no worries of it getting broken or use it as I do as a baby distraction tool for one hand whilst I file the other. With regular emery boards you have that sharp edge where the cardboard ends and it can slice your finger if you pull it down at the wrong angle. With Leighton's file it is rounded all the way around and completely smooth, ensuring a panic free baby manicure. The file itself is so smooth, when you run in along the nail it turns the filings into dust rather than breaking the nail off and catching, that is also a bonus because if you catch their little fingers they wont even notice. 

It takes me two minuets to file Finley's nails now with no tantrums or worry that I will hurt his tiny little fingers. I would say on average I file his nails once a week before they are getting a little sharp again.

Overall a fantastic product from Leighton both for me and Finley, you can get yours here and as an added bonus you get a 25 year guarantee so if for any reason it looses its file-ability you can get a new one :) 

Let me know if you do anything similar? Or if you struggle to keep those little hands still enough to file. 

Love Kayleigh x

Monday, 1 October 2012

My guilty pleasure

You might think that this post will be all about cheesy 90s pop music and fast food, both of which are some serious pleasures but who could ever feel guilty eating Dominos with Aqua playing in the background! Not me that's for sure. 

Today I will let you all in on a little secret.

My serious guilty pleasure, almost addiction is - QVC 

Not necessarily buying anything from them but watching their shopping channel daily. It sounds so strange but its almost addictive.

I cant quite put my finger on the reason I love QVC that much, its easy viewing I suppose, something you can put on and carry on pottering about without having to pay too much attention. But on the other hand I could sit and be glued to the presenters rabbit on about cushions and craft items....I don't even craft! 

You are all know thinking what an old lady, yes QVC does cater for the old lady type with a lot of what they sell but don't be put off. They sell some great things at amazing prices, I have switched to buying my Liz Earle products from them as you get so much more for your money. They sell OPI, Alpha H, Bobbi Brown and so much more. Take a look, I think you will surprise yourself at the prices and also the range of what they sell.I also recently bought some great cookwear that I will do a review on soon :) Be careful though, don't get addicted to buying its all about the watching for me.

I'm glad I got that of my chest, I hope you take a look and see what bargains you can find or are you already a QVC addict.
Let me know your guilty pleasures.

Love Kayleigh x

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