Disclaimer: We where gifted this box in exchange for a review.
We recently have started gardening a little bit more now that it’s the summer and plants are growing a bit quicker. So when mud & bloom contacted us and wanted to send a box to review we where eager to try something new.
I think learning about how things grow and teaching your child the responsibility of looking after their plant is such a important life lesson. Elijah loves getting involved with crafts but then no longer wants to help. So this has been good to teach him things don’t last five minutes and we have to keep working hard to see anything grow.
So what we got inside: we got some seed packets, activity sheets, lolly pop sticks to label plants and we got some stickers for making elderflower cordial. We also got the dirt to grow the plants. They also kindly sent some chalk to draw outdoors.
Elijah enjoyed putting the dirt in the water to expand and then helping to plant and cover the seeds. Every day we got to water his plants and we’ve moved them to bigger pots. Soon we will be putting them into the ground. Elijah loves commenting on how big they are everyday too as we have breakfast looking at them!
Elijah has liked the responsibility and learning about looking after things and being gentle. I’m so thankful we got this box as it’s really shown me just how into gardening toddlers can be and it’ll be something we stick too! It’s given me more incentive to get him to help more in the garden too!
The other day I did a ten things you should know before having a child and today I wanted to do from the opposite side. The good bits. Every negative has a positive and here are ours.
One. The love. You will never feel anything like it. You will never love as fiercely and you would die for something other than yourself. You feel and run off nothing but love in the newborn stage. The toddler stages may be hard but when they cuddle you or say I love you it makes your heart melt. Even the hardest of souls are melted like me!
Two. They’re funny. Elijah thinks he’s a comedian. The silly things he does to make us laugh. The funny faces, the farts. Everything about them will make you laugh at some point. They’re just a ball of laughter and silliness.
Three. When you see they’ve learnt something from you. You feel proud of both yourself and them. You get so excited over the littlest things like rolling over or learning to count. Soon everything they do is interesting because you made that and it’s incredible watching someone learn absolutely everything.
Four. No judgement of watching kids tv and Films. Nobody can judge if your still watching a kids cartoon when they’ve left the room or for buying toys that are clearly more for you then them. Fairly sure I buy toys because I want them not him!
Five. You get to relive your youth again. You get to pretend to be animals, run around being aeroplanes and being silly. You remember things you loved as a kid and try to share that with your child. Creating memories while reliving your youth is pretty cool.
Six. You get to be crafty. You get to make arts and crafts and create play. You get your creative side out. You’ll be amazed at just how many ideas pop into your head. Even if your art looks like your two year at least you can blame it on them and class as their hard work.
Seven. Seeing your parents with their grandchild. It’s lovely watching your kid loving and being loved by grandparents. It’s nice seeing how different they are and the happiness they bring. It’s nice to see your parents have a playful side you don’t remember after the teenage stage.
Eight. Happiness. Your child will bring you happiness. When they smile at you, talk to you, do something new or just talking to you. Sometimes you just have to look at them and your happy. If you’ve had a terrible day a cuddle fixes everything.
Nine. Enjoying being a parent. Being proud to talk about them, being proud to be their parent. Enjoying that this is your life now. Although there are days you want to rip your hair out there are some rare days where you feel really great and like your killing this parent game! Days when you feel achievement because you survived another day and your kid did too!
Ten. Seeing a loved one with their child. Nothing will ever describe that fullness I get in my heart when Elijah and James play together or do something together. When they smile and cuddle. When I first saw James hold Elijah I think my heart wanted to explode out my chest I was so full. This love is like nothing I could ever explain.
So this is a bit of a hard topic to talk about. As you know I am always talking about my mental health in the hope that others feel somewhat more normal in their feelings. I’ve never really divulged into the extremes my depression takes me too sometimes and perhaps it’s out of judgement, perhaps it’s the fear that I don’t want to accept I’ve ever reached that stage but I guess it’s more I’ve had a few of my friends come to me recently saying they feel the same. They also feel like they want to die at times.
Lockdown has obviously been crap for mental health. There’s been no upside in relation to mental health or physical health to me personally and it’s really taken it’s toll on me. Many others have felt the same. Without any real interaction other then via phones it’s really hard to communicate how we feel through a text. My counselling has been cancelled with no light at the end of the tunnel, no communication and no online sessions. I would normally take Elijah out daily and we’d see friends at-least 3/4 days of the week to get out and about . Now we are all stuck in with no communication. There is just no ability to feel better and being stuck at home means I’m stuck with my feelings. Many, many others are in the same position.
I have many times in my life become engulfed by my depression. Where I wouldn’t want to wake up in the morning, where I would rather die then start the day again. I wanted to die. I thought about how quick and easy it would be. I never wanted to kill myself. I never wanted to do anything about those thoughts but I did feel the world would be better of without me. I wanted to stop the pain. I wanted to stop the dark clouds that engulfed every moment of my life. It was hard. The only thing that kept me going was the thought of leaving my husband and son behind. I sort of became a human on autopilot not really thinking and doing things such as cooking and cleaning away and talking but not really being present to experience it. My body was here but I wasn’t. I was watching over unable to feel.
I hit a point I couldn’t take it anymore and had a breakdown. I found having a breakdown and ugly crying helped. Talking about my feelings to my husband is what was the breakthrough. Getting the words out, getting the feelings out was what I needed. The hurt, the pain and my feelings all in the air and I felt heart and safer. I spoke to my gp and my anti depressants fiddled around with again.
It is so important to speak when you have these thoughts. To tell your loved ones and get the thoughts and pressure off your head. It is okay to feel this way and while it’s not normal you can talk about how you feel. You are loved, somebody will always care about you and there is always someone you can talk too even if you don’t know them.
If you feel this way always speak about it. The people you speak to won’t judge. You can always call 111, the Samaritans and many other charity’s. You can call your friends, family, doctors or even just look online about your feelings. The storm will pass. You will breath again and feel better one day, it may not be today, tomorrow or next week but the calm will come. You will not be judged for having these thoughts. You will not be sectioned or anything like that for the thoughts. Feeling like you want to die is different to being suicidal and taking steps into it or planning it. If you ever get to a stage you are making plans it is time to take yourself to a hospital or talk to anyone who’ll listen.
The more you talk the more it lifts. The more better you feel. The more that heavy ness melts away with our tears. We get into our heads that everyone will judge us and that it’s not okay. Like we can’t have these thoughts. As parents we can’t have these thoughts because we’ll we’re parents. We apparently can’t ever have feelings of being down and can only ever be happy. This is not true. Anyone can experience depression. It doesn’t make you weaker, it doesn’t make you crazy it just means you feel so deeply that sometimes you can’t get out of those feelings. You’re not an attention seeker. You’re loved. You’re wanted, you’re existence matters and the world would be a shittier place with out you in it. Yes we can’t stop the worlds current situation, we can’t stop the bad news, the hurt and life events. But we can talk about it. We can process it and we can fight another day.
Disclaimer : I am writing this from a more comical side then serious side. I don’t hate my child by posting these facts. These are things I believe that everyone should know before planning a child. Why? Because having a child is not all sunshine and rainbows. Sometimes it’s poo and tantrums galore.
So to kick this of I am Charlie-Jane. I’m 25 we planned and tried for a baby at 22 and Elijah was born whilst I was 22. Elijah is now 2 and a half and sometimes I think he might be slightly possessed with his temper at times. Clearly doesn’t have my temper because I’m of course a angel. Ok perhaps not a angel but not someone who thinks rolling on the floor will in fact allow me to have cake for breakfast. Anyway these are some of the things I wish I new before I had a child. So I could of mentally prepared.
Number one: There is less we time and me time. Your days become worshipping little evil spawn. Instead of having a zen bath or going for a date with your loved one your life revolves around being a snack bitch or cleaning the path of destruction that your child’s created. You find conversations normally revert back to your child and your so drained from parenting you really can’t be bothered to do anything. Enjoying peace and quiet is a thing of the past and conversations always interrupted.
Number two: You will only ever hear children’s tv show songs in your head. Inside my head is a collection of blippi, andys adventures, waffle doggy and mr tumbles greatest. You will get really into kids tv. You find yourself sticking a episode of hey duggee on and having a laugh and then realising your child’s having a nap. You start conversations with talking about the latest kids tv series you watched not the latest show on Netflix. You find yourself wondering how does Justin have so much time to dress up as all these characters and I haven’t even washed my face this morning???
Number three:You will never have a relaxing meal or drink again. Infact you’ll make a cup of tea and your child will distract you so much that your tea is ice cold and your full of disappointment. Eating your dinner peacefully? Forget about it! Your child wants to throw food at you, eat your food or get down. I’ve lost count of the times I’ve had a drink hurdled into my meal or my child ran of with my last sausage or smushed his food into the walls and across the floor. Eating at a restaurant becomes stressfull keeping you child entertained and on their best behaviour and sometimes you’d rather not eat out with them atal!
Number four: You will never have privacy. Your child comes everywhere with you. Staring, watching, planning their next attack! If you need a poo? Well child is coming too and going to throw a giant stegosaurus at your face. Trying to talk on the phone? Child decides all of the sudden they want to sing at the top of their voice! Just minding your own business shopping when your child decides nows the time to lift your top down and show everyone your boobies! Note to self, always wear a bra after the Morrison’s incident.
Number five: Kids are expensive. Always growing like some hyped up sunflower! One minuite they’re tiny and the next they’re twenty feet giants that weigh 77 tons. You go through clothes quicker then you can buy them and that expensive toy you brought well it’s been five minuites and it’s trash to them now. There’s always some new thing they’re into and new toys to buy. You’ll be really glad when you spend loads of money on something and they don’t care about it atall.
Number six: You’re always tired. Of course the sleep steeler cry’s all night or apparently like my child sings Elton johns can you feel the love tonight at 3 am like that’s the norm. Of course I want to be awoken to Elton John mate thanks! Your days start before the sun and yeah that coffees going cold so there is no help with the fatigue. Your running round all day playing and cleaning and your so stressed you don’t know how to function. Your mind is tired, your body is tired, you don’t know what day it is anymore. 9 months was not enough time to catch up on rest like they tell you!
Number seven: Your child will have a meltdown over ANYTHING. They picked up the wrong toy, you don’t have doughnuts in the house, you won’t let them lick a trolley while out shopping. ANYTHING. There is no reasoning with them either, everything is a complete battle at times. Want to get your child to put their shoes on? Cue half hour screaming meltdown on the floor wiggling around like a worm that’s been cut in half. Oh and yes they’ll be plenty in public and yes it’s humiliating!
Number eight: Say goodbye to your freedom. Want to go to the shops? Better pack a suitcase and load the car and pram and pack snacks and three changes of clothes and my life’s ambitions. Want to go on a romantic date? CHILDCARE!!! There’s no more dates without someone to watch your child. Want to go for a walk alone to calm down? Well you can’t! Want to wake up when you want and go to sleep when you want? You can’t! Want to go to a fancy restaurant? Well I’m sure there is no baby change or high chair facilities! Trip to the cinema forget about it! long walk? Lug a baby or buggy around or just bin it off and forget about it!
Number nine: Your body will change. You will put on weight everywhere, your face will change shape, your hips, arms, feet, hands and everywhere else! Your stomach may sag and you’ll have horrid squiggly lines scatted over your tummy. Your hair will fall out in clumps and you’ll block your hoover and drain almost daily. Your skin will get spotty or dry and itchy. Illnesses you never knew you had will come out of the pipework. You will get tired more often and if you need to sneeze or want to laugh?There is gonna be A lot of wee accidents. Wrinkles and bags under your eyes will be your latest accessories in your beauty quest.
Number 10: Your life will become filled with poo and sick. Yes you will have poo explosions where the watery poo reaches their hair. You will have the potty training poo in the pants. Your child will take their poo out their nappy and smear it all over their bedding, walls and cot because why not? It’s clearly scented paint! your child will throw up in your mouth at least once and my god a sickness bug makes you want to leave the city. So prepare for being covered, your child being covered, your house being covered and you’ll contemplate whether it’s easier to burn the house down sometimes then clean a smeared poo explosion.
Of course I love my child and I love my life now he’s in it but boy is a bit of a prick at times. Hope you had a laugh! Charlie x
I loved cooking with my grandparents and my great grandparents when I was younger it’s one of the few skills I’ve been able to bring to adulthood with me. As Elijahs grown older he’s enjoyed gaining more responsibility and learning about how food is prepared. He loves baking cakes but outside of just pushing a spoon around we’ve started doing a lot more.
I want my son to leave home and know how to take care of himself and his future family. Not to expect others to teach them. I’ve taught my husband how to cook now I am slowly teaching our son.
Start with little tasks. Obviously no sharp knifes and heat should be involved in their cooking. So here’s some small tasks I give my little man to help with cooking. He is two and a half!
First of all you can ask your child to pass you items. Elijah loves doing this. He really thinks he is helping. We also pass each other blunt knifes and forks.
He helps butter them bread. I’ll be it is a little holey but he enjoys using the blunt knife and helping. He likes spreading jam and spreading tomato purée on a wrap or pizza base to make pizzas.
Get them to chop with a blunt knife. Elijah likes chopping cheese, bread, sandwiches anything soft.
Help them pour food that is measures into a bowl and get them to help measure out food too.
Help mix cake mixes, salad, anything cold.
Get them to help pour drinks and cereal.
Get them to help place food on a plate ready for dinner and assemble their own packed lunches.
Help set the table. Your child can take their plate and cutlery to the table and then their drink.
As Elijah gets older he will have more responsibilities in the kitchen but for now he’s happy with his little step and his helping hands!
It’s also a great way to teach food hygiene from a young age too!
It’s a funny old thing forgiveness, why should we forgive others for the way they have treated us in the past. Why should we open ourselves up to more pain and suffering.One thing me and my therapist started exploring with me before the corona virus pandemic hit was forgiveness. The ability to forgive not only others but myself too. But to forgive we have to understand why we may be feeling so hurt and against it.
When i was younger i was bullied. Relentlessly, my life became a living hell at times i even thought about taking my own life as a child myself. Because of this i found it easier to hate and hold on to anything said against me. Its why i don’t take compliments well and always see as others having some sort of secret need to take me down again. I turned my pain into anger, my anger into walls, my walls my anxiety and so forth.
Recently i have decided i would give this whole forgiveness thing a shot, thinking first about why it upsets me so much. I thought about why people treated me a certain way, Did previous trauma cause them to act this way? Is it just who the person is and that isn’t anything that will ever change? Can i relate on some level to why they’ve treated me in a certain way and then accept it that bit more?
First of all i decided to forgive people who went silent on me, a easy one. People who where your best friends one day and the next just popped of the planet like you never existed instead of being a adult and explaining why they no longer want to talk. When this happens there is a lot of questions and hurt, What happened? What did i do wrong? But in truth it doesn’t matter the key is accepting this happened and moving on. I thought about why this may have happened. Does the person not like conflict. Did i do something that might of upset them and then i thought i forgive this person because that’s what has happened and we can’t change it. Why hold on to anger that is not needed. Especially to someone who doesn’t speak to you anymore.
I then thought about people currently in my life who cause me pain and suffering not only now but in the past too. I decided to try and think why are people doing this to me. Why are they treating me in a way to cause harm and a reaction. But i decided that i know now that sometimes people are the way they are. Be it there personality or previous trauma which has caused a type of behaviour. We cannot change someone and why hold on to bitter feelings when we should learn and grow from them. Our experiences are to be learned from not obsessed over.
Forgiveness of others does not mean however we keep people in our lives that cause harm. It doesn’t mean we are door mats to stomp feet all over. Instead it mean we are the bigger person silently forgiving. But with forgiveness comes growing i have chosen to forgive certain peoples treatment towards me but decided as i have forgiven them i will move on from this relationship and not speak again to said person or to argue over the same things again. I will not inherit others drama and let it go forgiving and forgetting.
The most important thing about forgiveness however is forgiving yourself. Forgiving yourself for your feelings. Forgiving yourself for how you feel and allowing yourself to grow. For example i felt like i let myself down when i had a c section. I felt like a failure and like my body didn’t work although this was not my fault at all! I felt resentment to myself and also the fact that i put weight on during my pregnancy and i also hated myself because i suffered with post natal depression. I hated myself for previous friendship breakdowns and for who i am as a person. However now i think back and forgive my body for needing a c section and acknowledging depression is not my fault. I forgive myself for how i look,how i feel because i know that i cannot help how i feel about myself. I know that my life is not my fault and that my feelings are just and valid. I forgive myself for feeling a certain way and choose not to feel guilt or disappointment in myself.
It is so hard to forgive but it is sometimes easier if you just sit and think i forgive you in your head and breath out. Let someone who pops into your head be forgiven and grow from it. There needn’t be any real life conversations but draw a line in the sand sometimes and think i forgive you and myself. Obviously this doesn’t apply to everyone and every case such as serious cases but it’s something that has helped me with my more minor issues. As always stay safe, Charlie x
One thing I struggle to do as a blogger is find new bloggers when I put out a call for other bloggers to be featured in a blog post so others could be featured they where all more than eager to join! So if your looking for new things to read I’ve got a bit of everything here!
(Gifted) I was very kindly sent some wax melts to review because as you know I am clearly the candle connoisseur. I think it’s clearly something I need to put on my CV. I absolutely adore candles my house is filled with them and I dare you to come into my house and find a empty table or work space without some sort of candle related item.
I also love wax melts. Why you may ask? Well storage! although candles look cute they take up so much room. I’d rather fill my little box up with goodies then have nowhere to eat my dinner because my obsessions taken over. Also any of my friends reading this. Please stop telling me when candles or melts are on deal as we all know I’m soooo going to panic buy.
So first up we’ve got the presentation. Yes the product is the most important thing but I think the way you present your products is important too. If something is sent looking like a gift I 100 percent love it more. The box was very lovingly wrapped up in tissue paper with stickers. I also got a hand written note and sweet too. Instead of a buisnesses card it was lovely sticker which explained how to burn them to get the best out of the product.
Fun fact I have only once ever had a perfume scented wax melt from another company!Wild right! Because that scent wasn’t the strongest it kind of put me of perfume scents for a while so I was sceptical about how the products would smell and if they would keep there scent! But from just opening this box I new from the smells it was going to be good!
The wax melts come in either an adorable heart shape or in a block with squares. The squares are beautifully coloured and have lots of glitter inside to make it feel that bit more special. Inside the packets we have the little wax melts which come with the most pretty little hearts which have little tangs of different colours in. I love these because they are so space saving and I don’t have to worry about storage!
So let’s dive into each melt as I review them!
So first up we have pomegranate black. This smells quite like a fruity plum mix almost like a fizzy drink with the smell of some sort of wood mix. It smells really, really good and like a fragrance i would like to wear.
Next is lenor golden orchid obviously made to replicate the scent of lenor products. It smells very sweet and like vanilla it’s a nice soft a delicate smell!
Next we have purple rain. And yes I sign it like Prince every time I read it. Now it’s in your head and I’m not even sorry! This smells like the cocktail. The similarity is uncanny and it’s making me miss sitting in a pub garden with my friends a little tipsy of our cocktails at spoons.
Bon bons is up next. This scent is quite obviously based on the perfume bonbon. It smells quite uncanny and I love the scent. It’s made me want to go out and buy the perfume to wear it! This is a fruity sweet scent.
Next we have daisy again inspired by the daisy perfume. This is a soft flowery smell and smelly much like the perfume! look at how beautifully presented this is with all the glitter and the packaging!
La vie is last with obviously being somewhat a dupe of the Lancôme la vie. It has a vanilla, fruit and floral concoction to it which smells Devine!Very similar to the perfume if not stronger!! I love the glitter and little ribbon sequins inside!
The burn time is long and the scent fills my whole house. I will defiantly be buying again! a very firm favourite in this house now even my husband and son are interested and my 2 year old says it smells nice!
All of these stunning wax melts are very affordable. They won’t break the bank so you can get lots. The bars are around £2.30 and the heart melts around 2.99! Absolute bargain considering the quality of the products! You can also buy a single sample for only 50p which is great if you like me are fussy about your smell choice! They even do customised wax melts which could perhaps spell your name. They even sells burners, diffusers, sprays and carpet freshness so go and check them out!
Well there is a sentence i never thought i would say. Following on from recent government advice to wear face coverings where social distancing may not be possible for example in hospitals, shops and public transport i have decided to wear face masks. Obviously they are not overly protective they protect you better than nothing at all. Also we wear the face masks not to only protect ourselves but others. Wearing a mask can prevent your droplets escaping into the air around us as much and protects the general public if we where carriers of the virus and had no idea.
I am not seeing enough people wearing them in public and when i see others that do people just stare almost as though they think they look stupid. There is nothing stupid about trying to safeguard your health and others around you. The issue is however people who wear them in a car by themselves, on a walk or wear the medical grade filtered ones that the nhs so desperately need.
I advice you to buy or try to make your own face mask. There are instructions on how to make one online and many small businesses make handmaid ones. However do not buy the proper medical grades ones that medical professional needs. Your risk of getting the virus is low when out and about socially distancing but a nhs staff member touching covid patients requires it far more. Lets support others who wears a mask and wear one when we need to for the safety of us and others. This is especially important now that lock down is slowly being lifted.
Reading is so important and with so little resources readily available at the moment such as bookshops and libraries it’s hard to think of new ways to both entertain and educate your child. Elijah has always been interested in learning through play. He’s always loved stories and learning activities and without access to shops to find more we have had to adapt. We where very lucky when the people at reading eggs asked us to collaborate with them gifting us a chance to trial their reading app.
This app enables your child to not only learn to read, but also to write and puzzle solve. There are so many varied activities for many different ages from two upwards. Elijah loves that the app is interactive. He likes to be able to touch the screen on an app and also to be able to hear an activities noise too. The apps are super colourful and age appropriate.Elijah is enjoying identifying the alphabet that bit more better and learning about words. We are currently trying the handwriting app and he seems to be getting the hang of it. He doesn’t get bored of it like most apps trying to close it and move on but stays engaged and completes each activity before wanting to move on to the next. This is something that i’ve really enjoyed about this app because anything that can keep a child’s focus is amazing in my eyes.
My favourite thing about this app is that it talks your child through the activity as well as praising their good work. The app is available on many platforms and app stores but we love using it on the chromebook because of the bigger screen and not having to hold the tablet. We will certainly be using this app for years to come and it is a app that he will grow with. The app is also perfect for homeschooling too!