#MumaWin No.1

Welcome to my new weekly series (actually it’s not just new, it’s my FIRST ever series..! I’m feeling a little bit commitment phobe about the whole thing to be honest). I felt it was about time we showed parenting who’s boss: and started to shout about how we nailed the hardest job on earth each week. This is entirely new territory for me, finding faults is much easier and far more plentiful in my day to day life!

It’s a dog eat dog world out there, it’s Mum V Kids, and for the most part they are scoring all of the points. Well, the tables are going to turn: I shall be seeking out a #MumaWin each week. A glorious moment where I reign supreme over my kids who seem to be sponsored by Duracell.

I am constantly chasing my tail and seem to always arrive in the wake of disaster just seconds short of foiling the shitstorm, despite the girls being surgically attached to my hip. How does that work?!

Muttering “{BIG SWEAR}, another parenting fail” under my breath is a constant. It does seem to be my daily chant actually. How did  Vicks become smeared all over the carpet? And in which millisecond that my back was turned did ToddlerMonster manage to go nuclear, thanks to a slight glow stick mayday… in her mouth?

I don’t want the corner stone of my week to be blighted by organic-less food guilt, and loosing my shit in the playground in front of ‘Sorted Muma’ because I am decidedly Unsorted.

So here we have it: #MumaWins is born.

Every week I’ll share mine if you share yours… leave your Mum Boss #MumaWins in the comments or on the facebook Instagram or Twitter thread. I need your inspiration, let’s show these tinkers that Mumas got it all goin’ on.

To the end of Parenting Fails!!

***

I’ll keep this as brief as I can:

I’ll be honest, I want to tell you about how I managed to clean out ALL of my kitchen cupboards at a rate of 1 a night last week. Now this might not sound that exciting, but to me this is proper Muma Porn. My cupboards are now neat little pintrest worthy joys.

But I felt that if I named this as my #MumaWin then I would have to also confess that this resulted in 10 bin bags full of out of date food (FYI flour has a use by date?! Who knew!), some by 2 years, which leads to further embarrassment as our new kitchen is only a year old. Yes: I moved and stored out of date food, and then put it back into my brand new shiny kitchen!! There was also the little issue of unearthing the sweet potato which had taken on a more hummus like consistency at the bottom of my ‘anything goes’ cupboard.

Some of those bin bags were full of plastic sippy cups with no lids, and lids with no sippy cups. Tuppleware bottoms and Tuppleware tops, but not pairs. Rusty baking trays, which are health hazards. Which leads me on nicely to confess that I’m pretty sure the food standards bods would shut me down. Never again will I turn my nose up at those eateries with just 1* on their hygiene certificates. For that is 1* more than I would have been awarded…

So my first #MumaWin goes to my beautifully clean – even bleached kitchen cupboards. No more out of date roulette for us, no more ducking out of the way each time the cupboard of plastic doom is opened. Oh no. This is a #MumaWin and a half, not least because I did it with the assistance of my 2 & 5 year olds! (Please don’t report me for child labour- they thought it was fun! Honest…)

So it’s over to you – what’s your #MumaWin of the week?

Mummuddlingthrough
Life Love and Dirty Dishes

Beat the January Blues with my Pamper Hamper Giveaway!

To enter the Pamper Hamper Giveaway is simple! Please  comment at the bottom of this post or on my facebook post telling me why you need this hamper in your life, and then like and share the facebook post please. It really is that easy!
I have lots of brilliant giveaways coming up so please like my facebook page to make sure you don’t miss out over the coming weeks!
The winner will be announced on Sunday 15th January and the pamper hamper will be given to the Muma whose need for these goodies is head and shoulders above the rest – or makes me laugh until I cry! The challenge is on girls: Good Luck!

Welcome to my first giveaway of 2017 – it’s a corker!

By around this point in January the novelty of the shiny new year is nothing more than a dot in the distance for me. Let’s face it- it’s just dreary January, let’s not try and dress it up. De-icing the car before the school run and trying to get a hat and gloves on an unwilling just-turned-3 year old who has chosen to wear her swimming costume to nursery, because… well, why not. Is no mean feat.

So, in an attempt to beat the January blues this year I have teamed up with some great brands to bring you a month of giveaways!

To kick off, I am offering you the chance to win the Muma of all hampers: The Pamper Hamper! Packed with with over £80 worth of goodies- all chosen with you in mind. (I’m so sorry but I couldn’t run to Tom Hardy- he’s  all booked up with various story reading contracts).

What’s up for grabs?

I have included a little gift from me to you, see, I do love you!  None other than Katie Kirkby’s  pee-in-your-pants Times best seller: Hurrah for Gin is one of my favourite blogs to follow, so if you haven’t got a copy of Katie’s parenting manual (it’s definitely a manual!) then here is your chance.

img_1464
I have a soft spot for this genius blogger-come-book writer not only because of her ability to make a nation of Muma’s loose their shit over a collection of stick men, but also because she is from Brighton: my ends. Enjoy this, it was a 2016 highlight of mine!

What else?

  • How about some MojiTEA to sip on? Bit like Mojito but you can drink and drive with this kind, and who wants to walk anywhere in January right? Thanks to my fave Baca’s Coffee Bar in Seaford for this gem!

img_1472

 

  •  The Tangle Angel. Apparently there was a recent statistic suggesting that we should throw out our hairbrush on an annual basis. (Therefore I should probably be keeping this item for myself based on the fact that I’m pretty sure my current brush is pre-kids.) Anyway, with that in mind, New year New hairbrush, I give you: The Tangle Angel. This one is a bit special too, even celebrities use it – Kim K no less! They are not immune to tangles you know…

  • The Shine Bar is quite genius. My girls like to empty shower gel, shampoo, my face wash – you name it, into little pots to make’potions’. Basically, making frigging expensive concoctions of MY stuff. Nothing is sacred anymore. Anyway, this Shine Bar gets you a 1-0: kids can’t squeeze this out. It’s a bar! I love it, what’s more, it’s from an uber trendy salon in the Brighton lanes: Shine and smells divine.

Get Defensive

  • You just have to look at the playground or over the playgroup threshold  to catch some kind of revolting lurgy at this time of year. To help nip this is the bud and get one step ahead of the hacking coughs and rouge nose look you can have yourself, and your kiddliwinks, some Sabubcol.  This should give you a bit of a 1 up on germs, and make for a more harmonious January.

 

  • The legends who brought us the famous Rescue Remedy have also got a Rescue Plus. These tablets fizz into water to make a serious drink with benefits, and should give you a much needed energy boost, to help you deal with whatever your kiddliwinks choose to throw your way! (well, almost anything – please note: this isn’t gummy berry juice!)


 

Well there we have it- a bag of goodies delivered right to your door, especially for you.

All you have to do, is enter via my facebook page.

Good Luck!

Love from

Muma on the Edge

 
XX

Muma: The Unsung Christmas Hero

Cheers Mumas.

Here’s to you, the puppeteers’ of Christmas.

The makers of the magic.

Without you, there would be no tinsel-tastic hollabaloo.

Cheers to the Mumas who come up with a new trick for that creepy little elf each evening.

And cheers to those that have chosen not too.

Cheers to the Mumas who are busy needle and threading nativity costumes.

And cheers to those Mumas who Amazon Primed theirs.

Here’s to the Mumas who boss the sparkle all on their own.

And here’s to the Mumas who navigate the web of family celebrations.

To the Mumas that no longer have their own Muma here, to help and to encourage.

To the Mumas that light a candle for their sleeping babies.

Here’s to the Mumas that are frantically trying to make ends meet,

and to those Mumas who have plenty, but worry about spoilt brat syndrome.

Cheers to those Mumas that proudly plaster Jimmy & Jane’s every December waking hour over facebook,

and to those who don’t.

 A bottle of Bolly to the Mumas who trudge the freezing high street, in search of the perfect gifts.

Hats off to those that are trawling websites, waiting in for parcels and single handedly keeping Paypal afloat.

Bravo those Muma’s who credit Santa and his Elves for everything. Just to keep the magic alive.

And to those Mumas who’s teens no longer believe, enjoy the ‘thank yous’.

Here’s to the Mumas that decorate their Christmas tree daily, thanks to a Bauble-loving Toddlermonster,

and here’s to the Mumas that have sacrificed a catalogue tree in favour of displaying homemade one-of-a-kind loo roll angels and pipe cleaner snowmen.

Here’s to my Muma that still displays that loo roll angel 30 years later…

Cheers to you, the unsung Christmas heroes; Battling to win a Tesco delivery slot, attend the carol concerts, plays and recitals, with a highly flammable hot flush inducing Primark Christmas Jumper which has become your reluctant December uniform.

All the while, you keep that smile, and remember to savour those bright believing eyes, before the magic dies.

Here’s to our forever babies, and the copious Prosecco deals, which somehow make this manic month entirely worthwhile.

 

 

 

Toddler- led potty training: it’s totally a thing.

I wanted to share something with you, possibly it’s a little bit controversial- I know: Me, controversial, surely not..?! 

This is the story of why we are not potty training our  nearly 3 year old. 

Lila is potty training herself; you’ve heard of baby led weaning? Well this is the toilet version. I’m not sure if this is an actual thing or if I am just breaking out of the Muma- society mould here, I’m sure you’ll let me know…

                                    ***

She stood in a puddle of wee, in the middle of the park, sobbing; Wet knickers, wet leggings and wet shoes

It had been 1 week since we declared ‘potty training’ had began. this is back in 2013, and I am talking about our eldest daughter Darcie. She was exactly 2.5 years old, and numerous ‘experts’ (Butty-in elders and judgemental Gina-ford types ) had been surprised that Darcie wasn’t potty trained-

“What with the baby on the way…”

I was panicing that the world would stop spinning as I knew it with ‘the coming of baby No.2’, and decided that we should of course get cracking with this potty training lark.

We lasted 1 week before I couldn’t bare to see her wet herself and struggle anymore.

I had listened to other parents tell me of their potty training antics – us Mumas have great chat, right?! MONTHS some of them had spent watching their toddlers wet and poo themselves. In public, in the car, at home: you name it.

I just couldn’t do it. It just strikes me as a bit demeaning really. I would HATE to Wee myself in morrisons, so why would I think it ok to have my child do this? Why would I make my daughter wear knickers day after day standing by while she poos herself, looking helpless, telling her “she’s almost there”. Nah, that’s not my style. So we made the decision to avoid putting pants on our kids, until they ask.

I know using that word demeaning in association with potty training is probably going to get some backs up. I know that it’s all about personal choice and we all want what’s best for our children. Of course we do- that’s a Muma’s mantra. I also realise that using the loo and making that leap of faith from nappies needs to be taught, and learnt. But do we really need to force a round peg into a square hole here?

So we waited. We waited months, and months, our new baby arrived, and we celebrated Darcie’s 3rd birthday. STILL IN NAPPIES. 

And then it happened; one spring afternoon, down the stairs she came with her Peppa Pig knick-knocks on.

Darcie never put a nappy back on again. From that moment she used the toilet, not the potty. She was old enough to tell me when she wanted to go, she was old enough to sit on the toilet without having to lug a potty EVERYWHERE with us.

Darcie is now 5 years old, and we have never had to remind her to use the loo before we go out. Nor do we check if she needs it when we are out and about. I leave it up to her.

Her accident record is Zero.

I’m not saying that’s purely down to the approach we used, that, we’ll never know. But I am sure that never making a big deal out of all of this toilet related stuff has helped her.

So now it’s Lila’s turn. When she wants to wear knickers she does. When she wants to wear a pull up, guess what: she does! Sometimes she likes to use the loo, and other times she doesn’t. But you know what, more and more she is opting to use to use it. I have checked that nursery aren’t pushing her with toilet training and they have been very supportive of our choice to let Lila decide when she is ready to ditch the nappies- and start saving us a fortune.

I suppose the point of telling you all of this toilet related goodness is because I wish I had read that you don’t have to potty train like its a military operation, and you don’t need to label it:

WE ARE POTTY TRAINING”  *like a declaration of battle*

Just introducing the potty n knickers combo and offering those things,  rather than pushing them is enough. 

They will get there eventually. It’s not a race. 

I felt a huge pressure to succeed at potty training. And for what?! To gloat like a Gloatey McKnob that my daughter is wearing knickers before she’s learnt to pick her nose?

Our nearly 3 year old has enough on her plate- she is learning to speak, to form opinions, deal with frustrations, realising that book cases make great ladders, and all the while, brewing her next UberTantrum.

She doesn’t need this kind of shit in her life right now: literally.

I’ll keep you posted on how the Toddler-led toilet training is going- I know you’ll all be on the edge of your seats awaiting this update…

Until then, I’d love to know if anyone else has had a similar experience to me and has used, or is using this method?

Xx

3 Little Buttons
Cuddle Fairy
Best of Worst
Tammymum
Mummuddlingthrough

Bag porn* Fantasy shopping

AUTUMN HAS LANDED! *Cartwheels around the room*

So my secrets out, as much as I love the Summer – and I really do, I have a secret love burning deep inside for Autumn. Do you know why? I have an addiction to coats, boots, and bags. Basically outerwear! So I am eyeing up my old faithful boots, my beloved coats and big wintry hard core leather bags while it rains for the first time in like, a gazillion days.

With this obsession now at the forefront of my mind I thought it might be fun to trawl the internet and share one of my favourite pass times with you:

Behold the autumnal essentials ‘Add to Cart’ game. (Rightmove & fantasy holiday shopping being a close 2nd / 3rd)

First up is…

Coats: 

(I included the links, y’know for just in case…££ )

  1. The school run, cover ya bum, no harm done jobby and laugh in the face of a full on deluge, January style.
    school-run-coat
    Mango, £139.99

     

  2. The oh-my-god I need this in my life NOW coat. Ok, so it doesn’t look particularly warm, it doesn’t have more than 2 buttons on it for goodness sake. But my word, leopard conquers all for me right now.
leopard-print-coat
Topshop, £85.00

3. Are you ready for some coat candy. Yeh?! Ok then, here goes… (I mean, we could just cancel Christmas and let the kids stroke the coat right?!)

reiss-coat-porn
Reiss £495.00. *cries*

 

Boots

This is where my fantasy ‘Add to Cart’ game is a wonder because let’s face it – boot shopping can be hell; Especially with my pint sized assistants in tow. In one tantrum they can zap all of the fun out of my favourite sport. Life can be cruel.

  1. I have been searching for the perfect Chelsea boot (like y’do) for an age. I think I may have finally found it this season… sigh.
aldo-boot
Aldo, £90.00

2. Now, my husband would utter that this next beauty is the same as the Chelsea above – Good grief how wrong could he be!

Well, an elegant western, who knew!

office-westerns
Office, £80.00

 

3. Who doesn’t love a black knee high. A staple… ok I don’t actually own a pair YET. But I have been a good girl this year Santa…

black-knee-high
Kurt Geiger, £210.00 (gulp: ok, a VERY good girl this year…!)

And lastly, can we all have a good laugh at these please?! Think of the rain, how would we jump in muddy puddles?!! Topshop, how could you? *Shakes head, folds arms*

furry-boots
Topshop £69.00 – please don’t use this link! Lol!

Bags… 

I can not forget my favourite of all the outerwear garments: THE BAG. Here are my 3 faves for Autumnal-bliss. I’ll go in price order here…

  1. A throw it all in delight – Mmmmm with those black knee highs… I might add that it also has a long strap. Totally dressing it down: 2 bags in 1, so actually only about £44.50 per look. BARGAIN.
kurt-geieger-bag
Kurt Geiger, £89.00

2. Swoon* Grey, my one true love. and isn’t she pretty…

aldo-bag
Aldo, £50.00

3. You know how I mentioned that this was a FANTASY cart, well here’s the fantasy:

PRADA DOUBLE BAG - 1BG775_2EVL_F0002_V_OOO
Prada, Darling, £2,980

See, I wasn’t going to let you down. This right here is a proper bit of bag porn Mumas. We like? We likey a lot? And how practical is it I hear you ask… wipe clean, check. Room for wet wipes & nappies? Check! This is totally Muma proof. There’s just the teensy tiny question of the price tag. ” Cha ching cha ching… ”

So there you have it: my Autumnal round up.

Now I’m off to get back into my Primark jeans before I hit the nursery run. Keeping it real chicks, keeping this shizzle real.

Let me know what you think…

Life Love and Dirty Dishes

 

DomesticatedMomster
Pink Pear Bear

Burkini, Bikini. Potato, potarto.

I’m sorry, have I missed something here…?

How on earth is wearing a Burikini a threat to national security?!

I have just been frankly stunned to read that French police in Cannes ordered a woman who was asleep on the Promanade des Anglais beach, wearing a Burkini, to strip down or risk being pepper sprayed. Has the world gone mad?

If you haven’t ever seen anyone wearing a Burkini in the real let me explain – it is basically a wet suit with a mid thigh length over dress which also covers their head.

Have you ever felt threatened by someone wearing leggings and a tunic with a hat on whilst standing in the Tesco queue? Me neither… so why on earth as soon as the sand and sea is involved everyone starts freaking out over this level of cover up?

Woman must strip to wear bikinis on the beach? p*ss off.

It has baffled me, and left me feeling pretty bloody sad actually.

The French are saying that the Burkini causes offence, so boobs and g-strings are totally fine on the beach, but my god if someone should dare cover themselves up in the name of their religion they shall be prosecuted. More like persecuted.

This summer we went to a very crowded indoor swimming pool complete with slides, waves, verruca’s. You know the sort of place. There were maybe 20 girls and women wearing Burkinis. We were all in very close proximity (think packed lift) so I got a really good look at the ensembles. Did I feel threatened by these woman playing with their children whilst covered up? NO. Did I at any time feel offended that they chose to cover up their bodies? NO. Was I slightly envious that they didn’t have their wobbly bits on show like I did? YES!

So are the French simply penalising these woman to make a stand against the Muslim communities in the wake of the terrible Bastille terrorist attack earlier this summer? Woman who are on a beach minding their own business with their families, but have just choosen not to show their bits off and cover their heads? Shall we also ban sarongs and hats too then?

Seriously, this has gone too far now. Drawing a line in the sand like this is surely going to push Muslim communities away, making more of a divide, sending the message to anyone not able to question the ridiculousness of this ruling, that Muslims are not welcome. Way to go France.

Do you know what’s even sadder than a woman being fined for wearing a long sleeved top and a head scarf? Not one person came to this lady’s aid on the beach. The pictures just show open mouthed on lookers, no one came to her defence. She was a middle aged woman on her own surrounded by 4 police officers, being humiliated and striped in public.

I’m off to the beach today, I’ll be wearing a hat and maybe even a long sleeved top as I burnt my arms yesterday (oh balmy blighty!) I’m not expecting anyone to site me a terror threat, or for the police to approach me and ask me to strip.

There’s got to be a better way to patrol your beaches France, come on. Think outside the box a bit. Making laws that are both racist and sexist is never going to end well. Stop dividing your country and targeting these Mumas. You are embarrassing yourselves.

Muma’s Restaurant Nightmare

Today is the first time in a long time that I have had to bite my lip to stop myself from crying in public. This used to happen a lot in the early days, and mostly because we were making Rookie mistakes like attempting to go clothes shopping with a baby in tow. Or supermarket shopping with an 18 month old hooligan. I have since discovered shopping on line is the only way to remain clothed, and fed.
You adapt.



A while ago I began a quest to seek out the most child friendly eateries around where we live, East Sussex. I have now become a fully fledged food reviewer (dream gig for me… Nom Nom Nom!) So far we have been to Uber-kid friendly territory, easing ourselves in gently if you will.
Today we had what I thought would be a real treat of a review: one of the best restaurants in Brighton (and one I’ve been dying to try but can never justify the huge price tag) wanted us to come and review their Sunday lunch menu, with a true family slant.
Careful what you wish for: Family slant is exactly what they got.

How can I put this; we were the Ying to their Yang.

The restaurant wasn’t just classy, it was classy with a touch of Mega Chic. By contrast our 2 year old ToddlerMonster was living up to her namesake, whilst our fiveanger was exactly that. I naively assumed that the girls would be as excited as I was to try 35 day dry-aged roast sirloin of beef. They were not. Not remotely.
The food and service were top notch, seriously outstanding, unfortunately today was the day that our children decided to turn up the notch on Demon Mode.
Lila, (The ToddlerMonster) would not be consoled. A machine-like-whinge had been especially programmed in and it would not be stopped for anyone. Oh, hang on, it did stop to watch her beloved YouTube as our last ditch attempt to save the other diners ears and tempers. She likes to watch this American family who film themselves going about their daily business: Today she was watching them in a traffic Jam. I’m not kidding.
Darcie sat with her fingers in the ketchup, stuffing some chips down whilst Dan and I tried to make conversation over how to write up the ribs, We don’t know many ponsey foodie words so it went something like this:
“Mmmm it just falls off of the bone, Darcie please put your legs down, cor what a marinade, sweet, sticky DELICIOUS. Darcie please take that napkin off of your head…ohh don’t eat it all, oh shit we haven’t taken a photo of the dish…Lila don’t spit your water over the table. Darcie could you get down from the windowsill NOW”


Yey, It was dreamy. I could feel my stress levels rising as the restaurant filled up with lots of people adulating, all set for a swanky splash the cash Sunday lunch.
The waitress staff were on the level, They were lovely! In fact I wanted to ask them to join us. The 1:1 ratio needed bumping up a bit.
The main event arrived and I have to say it looked incredible. The kids were delighted to see enough gravy to sink a battleship, the largest, thickest cut of beef with the biggest roast potatoes I have ever laid eyes on. It came as one big Sunday roast sharing platter which is a really lovely idea. The girls were finally quieting down. I had a glass of Melbec.

And breathe.
Until this:
“Maaaaaaa I done a weeeeeeee. I done a weeeeeee I done a weeeeeee”
Toddlermonster had indeed ‘done a wee’. Her nappy had clearly hit capacity but as I had been so busy farting around trying to get some decent food shots, I had failed to notice.
The wee was spilling off the highchair and splashing onto the floor tiles below.

A sort of waterfall effect.
Oh dear god.
Our daughter was peeing on the floor, we had to let her finish. I would have been horrified if this had happened in McDonalds, let alone this Uber-Chic haunt.
I’m not sure who was more mortified, Lila or I. The oversized napkins came in handy as I wrapped it around her waist to make the trek through the length of the restaurant slightly less conspicuous!
The waitress deserved a gold medal (or the huge tip we left), by the time we arrived back at the table it had all been cleaned up. Good as new!
By this point the girls were past the point of being reasoned with. I bribed them with a chocolate lolly each to buy Dan and I a few minutes to throw this decadent roast lunch down our necks. I have to say, it really was the king of roast lunches.
The straw that broke the camels back, or should I say, the point where the prickly eye cry feeling crept up on me wasn’t the peepee incident. It was when Dan made a dash for the loo before we left. That was it, as soon as dear daddy was out of sight ToddlerMonster kicked off BIG TIME. She went shitcrazy bonkers. Right in the middle of the restaurant, screeching,“My Daddy, my Daddy”, at the top of her voice in between deafening sobs.
She had been working up to this very moment, and the girl let rip.
The dead weight back arch was in play. No amount of consoling or begging was going to stop her. Everyone was looking up from their fortune lunch plates. I had to carry her out to the street, leaving our bags behind, like she was a hot sheet of screeching metal.
I have no idea if we shall ever be asked to review somewhere ever again.
For now, I’m not sure I really care.

If you have a disaster dining story, please share. I really think I would take comfort in your nightmares right now!!

Life Love and Dirty Dishes
3 Little Buttons
Rhyming with Wine
Pink Pear Bear
My Petit Canard

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