AD Quinny Hubb

A few weeks ago, we received the Quinny Hubb, To start this blog post in my 6 years of having my children I have not used a travel system quite as convenient as this one.

The Quinny Hubb is new to the UK this year, It is amazingly versatile, comfortable and many configurations that grow with your family. A spacious, highly comfortable, stylish pushchair. Available with a flexible Duo accessory, the Quinny Hubb keeps adapting to your life.

So the Hubb has the option for parent or world facing, When my 3 year old Katie is at Nursery I will have Jake, my 10 month old baby facing me. So I can easily communicate with him. This means the large basket is easily available so that I can go shopping and put lots of bags underneath (don’t tell my Husband!) including Jake’s changing bag, in fact far more storage space than I have had with other pushchairs.

Quinny Hubb
To set up press the grey button on the right hand-side then the one on the handle bar

The Quinny Hubb is really straightforward to put up when unloading from the boot of my car, just push the button on the side then on the handle and the chassis rises up. There are several options where you can slot either a car seat, another pushchair seat or the hop on bench. Then slot the seat in place it really is so simple! To release just hold the clasps on both sides.

Quinny Hubb Hop on Board
The board slots in so easily, ensure it’s the second gaps

Because I also have a three year old I tend to leave the hop on bench slotted in place if I know I will have both of my children with me on a particular day. The hop on bench is an amazing addition, it doesn’t fall off like stand on buggy boards I have had in the past and is held in place really firmly. There is still space in the basket still. This pushchair is stylish yet really heavy duty and withholds pretty much anything life throws your way especially when out and about with more than one child, even up and down curbs.

Quinny Hubb With Hop on Board
Ready to go! No moans from my Daughter about having to walk too far as she can now have a rest

With 6 standard colour packages, there’s always a Hubb that suits your lifestyle, We went with the black because it matches our car and for us shows less day to day dirt, although I do love the colours available.

In the colder months there is also a foot muff available in various colours, We love the grey, It’s so soft and keeps Jake warm; meaning he can wear a lighter jacket on top rather than a full snow suit if the weather isn’t too cold.

Quinny Hubb  World facing
A huge basket

I also love that when Jake is world facing in his seat, there is an extendable sun canopy (UV 50+) that has a convenient peek-a-boo window to keep an eye on your child when they’re facing away from you, Just the other day he awoke from his sleep and gave me a lovely smile through the peek-a-boo window. Plus the sun canopy can be pulled down quite far meaning your child is well covered on the warmest of days.

Quinny Hubb - Peek a boo
Peek a boo mesh and reclines using the clip at the top of the seat

All in all I can honestly say this is my favourite of all pushchairs I have owned and that is quite a few! It just makes my life easier when out and about as any Mum of three knows is so helpful. I think knowing that Jake is comfortable and secure and Katie is in front of me safely on the bench, makes a far smoother ride plus the width of a single pushchair. I normally struggle with the set up of some travel systems and with this one I haven’t at all.

For any Parents expecting with one or more children, I would highly recommend because you can add a carry cot or car seat too. I have been kindly gifted this item by Quinny and Azaria Ltd, all opinions are my own.

“Do you feel done?”

A question I found myself thinking after I had a natural straight forward birth experience with my Second Daughter.

As soon we arrived home and a Midwife visited the next day, she said goodbye and said we’ll see you for the next one,m I said you won’t but then thought…..hmm I thought I just didn’t feel ‘DONE’ She told me you know when you are DONE.

A couple of years flew by and I felt like things were starting to settle the girls were/still are good sleepers and I was starting to feel better in myself and even loosing weight and we’d just had an amazing holiday to America.

There were times when we’d discuss the idea of a third but it brought up so many points to consider. Yet came back to the decision we were more than happy with our two amazing girls.

So when considering another child, you think where will he/she sleep long term, the car you need to get another type to fit all three in full back car seats if they all still need them ( we did!) A couple of months before we did decide to go for an SMax. ( I missed my old car for a while because it had lots of nice extras ) Even though the Ford SMax is super economical and spacious so perfect for a larger family.

Splitting attention was also a tough one to think about and how would I even manage to look after three being so outnumbered? and then how would we arrange their bedrooms?

My third pregnancy was extremely hard. I was very sick for the first 20 weeks and then my gestational diabetes came back and had to take continually upped amounts of insulin and had numerous urine infections and more issues on top of all that, which I won’t go into.

When I found out I was expecting baby number three we were in absolute shock! However after the news had sunk in we were so excited and couldn’t wait for our growing addition to arrive.

Someone once said to me, You never regret the children you have and that is so very true.

I also think it’s more of a challenge with your first because you have to build the family and your whole life changes beyond recognition, However any subsequent children just fit into the family that has already been made.

So in May last year our final baby, Jake arrived ( we knew his gender from a scan in January 2018 ) and couldn’t be more happy, he completed our family perfectly. Yes at times it is a juggling act but my older girls are great with him and completely adore him. Jake’s face lights up when he see’s them.

Would you like a larger family? I also fully appreciate it is not always a choice for everyone.

baby bump

Baby Bump Number 3! Induction started ……. May 2018

Early January 2018
Gender reveal – January 2018

Christmas Traditions Calendar

For me Christmas starts on the 1st December.

Not into the Elf on a shelf as yet so this is how we like to enjoy Christmas each year…

1. Put the tree up and decorate downstairs with various nick nacks from previous years .We like to let the girls decorate the main tree and their smaller one.

Christmas decoration

2. Book a ‘Meet Father Christmas’ session and day out somewhere fun for the children, this year we went to Drusillas Park, in Sussex.

Girls visiting Father Christmas at Drusillas Park

3. My Husband and I go Christmas shopping on our own  if we can (this year with our baby) to buy all presents somewhere special to make a nice day of it. Plus we obviously don’t want the girls to see what they will be getting on the big day.

4. School Fair, My eldest loves this as lots of fun interactive crafts and activities to get involved in.

Paint in pots

5. Go to get my nails painted with gel in something red and shiny.

Hand with red gel nail varnish

6. Attend either mine or my Husbands work Christmas party.

7.  Nursery Christmas crafts, normally something like covering a bauble in glitter.

8. Christmas Carol’s this year something I will get to watch whilst on maternity leave.

9.  Nursery Nativity,  This year my youngest Daughter is in her final year so Pre School and will  be singing Jingle Bells apparently.

10.  Getting ready for the big Father Christmas visit with mince pies, milk and carrots for the reindeers and prepare the decorations on the dining table.

11.  Christmas Day –  We host most year so will start preparing in October with an online food  order, then prepping all the vegetables first thing.

Then we enjoy  a leasurely breakfast whilst opening presents, watching my children’s faces is the best part.

Then family come round, I will usually have started cooking beforehand.

Cook the meat at about 11am, I usually cook just a crown of turkey, then the vegetables and trimmings. The thing that helps the most is heated sectioned tray from Robert Dyas.

Then after the 3 courses, we will sit down to watch TV and play games this year what’s that smell will be on the agenda, kindly gifted by Wire Pr.

What’s That Smell Board Game

Plus the flour game ! If you haven’t played before it is so much fun.Pour some flour into a bowl then tip out onto a plate, place a chocolate on top, each person cuts a slice in turns, the person who lets the chocolate fall in has to get it out with their mouth. It’s hilarious.

12.  Pantomine usually at the Hawth in Crawley, Something to cheer the girls up after the excitement of Christmas has died down. Plus we love it as guaranteed a good afternoon of laughter.

Then relax ready for January to begin. Maybe I’ll buy Elf on the Shelf in the January sales ready to start in December.

 

Christmas Gift Ideas 2018

Christmas 2018 is less than 2 months away

How fast did that come round again? At this time of year I like to start lining up gift ideas for my children . Here are some items that I like the look of and have been reviewing this month.

For 2+ year old

This count with Peppa toy is lots of fun, Peppa helps children count to ten. Whilst also learning to recognize colours and numbers.  My little girl loves playing with this toy at 3 years old she is just learning to count to ten, this toy will  help her practice. My Daughter enjoyed slotting the coins into Peppa’s purse counting them as she went. Peppa also helps children with listening to instructions that are asked and following sequential steps, what’s not to love learning whilst playing. My Daughter is very protective of this toys and likes to show us that she understands what Peppa is asking.

For 4+ year old

This Fuzzikins Campervan is so much fun! The set includes x2 Cat Fuzzikins ( a medium and a large)  that can be coloured in with the x5 felt tip pens included. The inside of the Campervan is amazing the cats can sit at the table on the rubber chairs or the table turns into a bed with the blanket to go over the cats of a night time. There is also 3x Colour your own sticker sheets which my daughter really enjoyed.

All clips away inside the Campervan which is great as less mess and chance of the Fuzzikins or contents going missing. My 6 year old Daughter absolutely loved playing with this toy, being able to colour the cats in was an added bonus, she especially loves letting them pretend to eat together at the table, then putting them down to bed for the night.  She said it’s great because it clips together and my sister can’t open it!

For 10+ year old

This Science Mad – Crystal Growing Kit

Includes 14 experiments that are all safety tested. With everything you need to grow and cultivate your own beautiful crystals.  This comes in a large box , So there’s a lot to get creating with. It’s the kind of gift, I myself as a child I would have been so excited to receive.  We have loved creating crystals, As my eldest Daughter is 6 she needed my help and was really happy with the end result.  Some real one on time with my Daughter. It really brought me back to my childhood. Make sure you wear the goggles and follow the safety instructions, I would recommend the help of a grown up.  So far we’ve only created one set of crystals but still so many more to try, definitely value for money. Science is so much fun!

Some of the crystal’s we made:

 

Baby 6months +

Sophie La Giraffe Beaker, It’s just so cute! I will be getting this for my baby as absolutely love the hidden Sophie in the middle of the beaker.

Match Stick Monkey – These looks like exactly the kind of toy my baby would love at the moment as he can only hold little things. Plus it has a toothbrush at the end to apply teething relief or practice brushing !  Both seen in JoJo Maman Bebe.

*Three of the above items were gifted for review by Wire Pr, The Peppa Pig – Count with me             ( Trends UK ) , The Science Mad Crystal Growing Kit. ( Trends Uk ) and Fuzzikins Campervan.

All opinions are my/ children’s own.

Disneyland Paris – Tips before you go

We’ve just arrived back from an amazing few days in Disneyland Paris.

It’s truly magical and a real treat for the whole family even when travelling in the School Holidays. I’ve written a post below that helped our trip go smoothly with 3 children with us ( one of whom is a 3 month old baby ) :

Travel 

We travelled by car on the Euro Tunnel, it was so straightforward for us. Approximately 1.5 hour drive to Folkestone  ( Little shops/ duty free etc whilst you wait to drive on ) then half an hour on the tunnel once in Calais the drive is 3 hours but we took a few stops and there are so many little rest stops with toilets it made the drive very simple and it’s a pretty much straight route. The toll was $22 each way which in my opinion was very worth it for the route is far simpler and has the rest stops easily available.

Food

Take the meal plan option either half board or full board if staying at one of the Disney Hotels, I believe this saved us a lot of money as actually kept to using the plan instead of eating the more expensive options whilst still going to the best restaurants in the park.

Book your restaurants in advance, it may seem crazy but everything is so busy there, it’s a relief to walk in somewhere and be seated straight away especially to get out the heat if travelling during the Summer.

Whilst using the plan if one person doesn’t like all of their options ( you get a starter, main, desert and normally one soft drink each) order it anyway as normally one of the party will like it.

Tap water is free! So we often ordered this just at meals to keep hydrated and I only drink water anyway, so would give my soft drink to whoever fancied it. Also there are water fountains dotted around the park so take an empty bottle to fill up. ( we had no issues with anything from drinking the water in the resort )

If you want to save time in the parks it’s definitely worth booking the Character restaurants well in advance, we went to Auberge de Cendrillon, Inventions and Cafe Mickey , the Interactions the children had were priceless. If you are only going to do one Character restaurant i’d probably say go to Inventions in the main Disneyland Hotel just because the atmosphere was wonderful and the buffet food made it simpler and some fun puddings.  As these restaurants were an ‘upgrade’ on top of the pre paid plan price of approximately £100 per time.

Bread! You get a lot of it – Everywhere! at one meal ( the Cinderella one! ) bread came as you sat down, starter and a side. In the end we had to try to limit the girls as they only wanted bread, which didn’t do them any favours.

The children’s meals are well catered for as everything is separated i.e pasta from the sauce.  The starters for children weren’t  great as usually some form of salad covered in dressing. (But maybe this is my fussy children!)

 

Shortbread

Adult Desert from Auberge de Cendrillon ( Princess Restaurant )

Rides / Attractions 

We loved the rides in Fantasyland, probably because they appealed the most to our girls age 3 & 6 so head to the areas that appeal most to your party first.

If staying in a Disney Resort hotel make the most of the Magic Hour before the park opens to the public, we were able to go on some rides two or three times with no queue’s, Then queue at the end of the Magic Hour for any other rides/ attractions to cut down queue times. We loved the Peter Pan ride and went on it multiple times!

 

Use your fast passes then arrange to come back and get straight on your ride, it’s so easy and quick!

If wanting to watch the parade, shows or illuminations get there at least 45 minutes in advance ( for this reason it may be worth packing snacks, drinks etc to keep children busy ) this will ensure you get a good view or get in to shows like Mickey and the Magician which is amazing.

There are character meet and greets dotted throughout the park, if you see an umbrella and a cast member standing around it usually means a meet and greet is imminent.

 

Hotel 

We stayed at Disneys Sequioa Lodge which for us was perfect. I love the style and theme of the hotel like an ‘Aspen Lodge’

We booked to stay there, because A) It had a pool indoor’s and outside, which we loved as a great way to cool off after a busy day at the Parks  B) The hotel was very close to the park which made it really convenient.  The hotel staff were pretty accommodating, We arrived early on our first day and were allowed to check in a couple of hours before the normal time of 3pm to our room which was great after such an early start.

Video – Standard Room 

Shopping 

I brought a few items in H & M and Primark before we went as the price difference was huge ( Mickey Mouse Ears £2 in Primark vs $24 in the park,  although saying that some of the items sold in the park once their were quite unique. I also took a few of the girls Princess dresses with us.

Snacks – You can take these into the park and worth taking with you. We run slightly low and brought some biscuits for the girls whilst they were Mickey Mouse ones they were $7.99 for two relatively small packets.

We have put together a 30 minute video of our trip to Disneyland Paris.

Let me know if you have any questions.

Baba Bing Day Tripper City Deluxe Changing Bag – Review

Being pregnant with my 3rd baby, it was time to buy a new changing bag as pretty much starting from scratch with all baby items.  As our 3rd baby is to be a boy we decided to choose a bag in the colour grey as it matched our Mountain Buggy duet which is also grey.

The Baba Bing bag has many useful features my favourite being that you can reach straight into it when out and about whilst attached to a buggy using the clips enclosed, this shows it must have been designed by parents who are forever reaching in and out of changing bags for wipes and snacks!

The bag is also waterproof essential for when out and about in the UK! It has many useful compartments which are pictured so you know straightaway where to put various items such as nappies/ wipes. Another great feature is the ‘bin’ section underneath the bag where nappies/ rubbish can be stored until you reach an actual bin.

The link to the bag is below.

https://www.johnlewis.com/bababing-daytripper-city-deluxe-2016-changing-bag-grey/p2491195

This is my own opinion of the bag and not been paid / gifted to review.

 

Coping with Gestational Diabetes

Insulin

Gestational diabetes was something I’d heard of but didn’t know much about. I was diagnosed at around 32 weeks in my second pregnancy in 2015 and initially found it tricky monitoring my blood sugar I didn’t need to go onto insulin until the last couple of weeks but seemed to be ok on the metformin tablets they gave.

Third time round I had an early glucose tolerance test ( which involves having a blood test, drinking a high sugar drink then another blood test  to see how your body tolerates sugar ) at 14 weeks pregnant which came back as normal then another at 24 weeks which frustratingly didn’t. I was then referred to the diabetic team at the Hospital who have pretty much handled my care since.

Initially my diabetes was diet controlled then a couple of weeks later my glucose levels started to creep up, then it was decided I’d try metformin just one a day but had an awful reaction to it in the form of agonising pains and an upset stomach.

So at that point it was decided to start insulin which I’ve had the levels gradually increased thereafter.

Insulin injections take a little getting used to but the needle is fine so doesn’t hurt just a sharp scratch as long as you remember to rotate the injection point and use a fresh needle each time.

Also it’s remembering to monitor blood sugar for me four times a day plus the 4 insulin injections which are done either at the top of the thigh or lower stomach.

The only benefit I guess is more scans at least every month, more frequent checks of my pregnancy levels and getting to listen to the heart beat, I am extremely luckily as feel my antenatal care has been excellent and now feeling more positive than I did when I initially found out I had the gestational diabetes.

Flying with Children

About a month a go we took our two children who are almost four and nearly one to Cancun, Mexico.

We thought both their ages were a good time to travel long haul because the eldest was able to sit and watch films, play nicely with colouring books/ craft type activities and my youngest still sleeps quite a lot and didn’t want to get on the ground as wasn’t crawling then.

She just started this week …..

Before the flight I gave my eldest lots of warning we were going away and that the flight would be long but if she kept busy and slept it would go much quicker. We got a taxi to avoid too much lugging around of suitcases and the double pushchair. Once at the Airport we had breakfast then brought some magazines, sweets and small toys then played in the soft play. ( LGW )

About a week before we went away I went to the Pound Shop and spent about £10 on various activities/ toys such as colouring books the small travel type ones, small puzzles, stickers. and also some other bits to play with once at the hotel in the room. I wrapped all the presents and put them in my husbands ruck sack, we then staggered all the presents being opened as soon as she got a bit bored or used them as a bribe if her behaviour started to change ( not ideal in real life but on a packed plane a bribe was a godsend!)

Planning ahead really is key!

We also used the opportunity of saying there’s a meal/ snack / ice cream coming to encourage something to encourage her to think about the next thing on the agenda. We were lucky enough to be travelling in Virgin Atlantic’s Premium Economy on the way to Cancun which meant we had a little more space and I could hold both the children on me if necessary and the cabin was smaller so more of a calming effect on the children I think.

Another thing is to go on a walk of the plane ( I know more parents do this anyway!) which can use up quite a bit of time if you get talking to other passengers as it was a large double decker 747-400.

If travelling with an infant under one, request a sky cot it’s excellent as you can strap them in ( my baby slept the whole 9.5 hours straight of the flight home ) you then have your hands free to eat.  The eldest ate her meal,  watched one film ( The Good Dinosaur) and slept the rest of the flight as well, it really wasn’t as bad as some make out, although as much as I dislike night flights when travelling with children it really helped.

At the end of the return flight we had several compliments about how well behaved our children were (I could see their faces when we first say down near them thinking ‘oh no two children for the duration of the flight’).

Luckily for them all went smoothly! Thanks for reading!