Monday, 27 June 2016

Memories of The Baby Days (or Haze!)

I'm utterly blessed and totally happy with my lot in life, but the strangest things can make me yearn for more babies...

Taking pictures of this car seat for eBay and I was smacked in the face with heart filling memories of bringing my big two home from the hospital. 

Peanut, squashed into her chair in her specially planned 'going home outfit' which was too big and looked bonkers. Us Filled with excitement and fear, joy and nerves that we were now parents!

The golden child, hoyed (another great Geordie term, it means chucked, obviously I didn't literally chuck him though you understand)  into his chair in a hastily picked romper because I was aching to get home and we hadn't planned to be in hospital.  This time not quite as nervous and feeling happier than a pig in mud despite the overwhelming task ahead of having two children under 19 months! 

And Termite, well she never got her journey home because she arrived in a perfect home birth in our bedroom. 

But those memories so vivid and clear in my mind, memories we won't repeat with a fourth made me tearful and joyous all at once! How strange the human heart is to feel such emotion from looking at the teen tiny settings on a baby car seat! 

To ache for that secret bond of the growing life inside or to know that those blissful, tiring, endless night feeds are firmly in the past, that there will be no more first steps or first words. But despite that ache and that sadness I know that my three will be providing a million more first , and celebrations and sleepless nights, hugs, crying and lots and lots of love.

On holiday recently I felt 'the brood' again when i saw lots of ladies with perfectly beautiful bumps, enjoying a break before the big day arrives, and it can be a strong feeling even though Im lucky and blessed and happy and content, something inside would still love to do it again, sometimes I feel sad that the days of teny dangly legged babies have gone, that there wont be another 'first steps movie to mke.

So while my bloodiness may never quite disappear I'll just go with these yearnings brought on by random things and remember with my rose tinted specs how amazing my baby days were and how fabulous my kids make our life and I will try (whilst repeating @I will parent with peace and calm over and over) to absorb embrace and enjoy every single crazy, hard, happy, laughterfilled, messy, funny, heartfilling moment of our toddlerhood, tweendom and teenage years 


Sunday, 26 June 2016

Why I'm Throwing Out My Scales

I've had an epiphany! I hate my scales, they are meaner to me than my inner bitch, and she can be MEAN!

See how she smiles having made me work my butt off!


Just before my holiday I felt great, a couple of tough work outs down with My brilliant trainer and I felt slimmer (dont get me wrong I'm a mile away from skinny but I felt better) so I had a sneaky weigh in.... and I was a pound heavier! I instantly felt rubbish and wanted to kick the scales but then I thought why the heck should that number make a difference? I can't possibly feel different now than I did thirty seconds ago?  When I was chatting about this to pals one of them remarked that she had seen a personal trainer call them the Step of Saddness (if it was you and you are reading this sorry for stealing but I like the phrase.) and I couldn't have put it more perfectly myself. So no more




Dear scales and your silly numbers, I'm afraid we have to say goodbye, we have had an unhealthy relationship for too long now! I have weighed myself weekly sometimes daily for as long as I can remember even going so far as to track my weight gain during my pregnancies! I know you cant help what you tell me, I make you do it but I'm afraid I cant listen to you any more. From no on I'm making pals with my favourite outfit and we are going to be kind to each other until I can wear her again, you see I look fab in her and she has never made me feel bad infact she always always makes me feel good, so from now on dear step of sadness you are no longer in control!


The top half of my feel good outfit!

Chubby Puppy - Review

We were recently sent a chubby puppy to review, it created a lot of enjoyment at monkeyfeet HQ although it has caused fights over which child is actualy is Chubby Puppy's parent!

Heres our Vlog

The puppy is priced at £16.99 and come in an assortment of 'breeds' ..



I'll be honest the puppy was smaller than I imagined but the kids seemed to know exactly what the were getting andf they really enjoyed playing with it, they've made him/her walk (shuffle limp and hop) through a variety of obstacle courses and off the chair and table to much hilarity.

The Chubby Puppy is from Spin Master Toys and is available to buy in most big toy stores 

Saturday, 25 June 2016

Benefit Brow Bar

I was recently invited along to try out The Benefit Brow Bar at Debenhams in Intu Eldon Square. I love Benefit and was very excited to be heading along for my eyebrow mapping (that is a real thing I swear)

Dean was my Brow aficionado for the day and he was really great, explaining everything he was doing and asking loads of questions about my skin and makeup routines. He explained that normally they would recommend a tint as it lasts longer with great results but as I have a right dodgy time with my eyes and hadn't had a patch test I declined on this occasion, but I've had my patch test for next time.



Dean measured where my eyebrows should be for optimum arch appeal by making lines in relation to my nose, corners of my eyes and the measurements of my eyebrows.he showed me what they would look like with a tint and then he set to work waxing the strays and adding a bit of shape. I have recently had a little too much waxed from my eyebrows and I'm trying to let them grow in thicker as the edges are really dismally thin. So I should tell you that I've never had an eyebrow wax as painless as this one!! I don't know how but it just didn't hurt at all, barely any redness and it was very quick! I should have gotten him to do my upper lip while he had me in his chair, because that normally geet knacks (geordie translator: really really hurts!)




Dean then used a host of product to WOW my Brows. He used Browvo Conditioning Primer which promotes lush brow growth and condition apparently, Goof Proof Brow Pencil, Gimme Brow for some extra colour, and then Ready Set Brow for some extra shape and to set . These products were only launched on Friday so they may well be in high demand yoou can pop into a store to check them out and use the great colour match guide to choose the most suitable from the 6 choices available.


I'm going to be truthful here I got a bit of a shock when I looked in the mirror as my brows looked so dark and defined and, erm, in 39 years I've never once used an eyebrow pencil or product! But they certainly made a difference.




Next up I was show to the make up counter and talked through different products that were being used for my make over. I really don't wear a lot of makeup and I think I disgusted my lovely make up artist when I informed her my routine involves slapping on my BB cream with my fingers like a moisturiser and that's about it! So we went for a dewy look and she used primer, foundation, powder, highlighter, blusher and bronzer and lippy to achieve the finished look....




Overall, I have to be honest there was such a difference in my brows I felt a little conspicuous but you must remember that I wear very little make up, so I took to social media, as you do, and the opinions were positive and reassuring 


nobody gasped in shock at the school gates and lots of people said they thought it was a great look for me. 

I can definitely see a difference and Dean did a cracking job, So if you are looking for a little subtle change in your look you should definitely pop along and let Dean (or any of the other Brow experts) Wow Your brows 



What do you think to my makeover then? Do you use brow products? I'd love to hear your thoughts...

How To Claim Your Free Limited Edition Zelf

Zelfs are launching their 6th series at the end of July and with that comes the coveted limited edition Zelf! We are super pleased to have gotten our hands on this one...

Heres our #Unboxing video


Mary Go Round The Carousel Pony is the rarest limited edition to date with only 400 available in the UK and they are not for sale, to claim yours  go to  www.evolutioncomps.co.uk/carouselfponyzelf  and claim using receipts from purchases of zelf products from  2016  to the value of £30. 

If like us you are Zelfs fans you can joing Zelfs Club  to keep up to date with all the latest news and offers. Zelfs are available to purchase in most toy stores

Friday, 24 June 2016

Family Dining at Intu Metrocentre Qube

Its no secret that my love for the Metro Centre is a recently new thing, I've always thought I didn't love it until a recent visit when I discovered it is totes amazebonks! So  now I'm  happy to go along whenever possible, obviously I jumped at the chance of sampling a selection of the best food the QUBE has to offer.


The QUBE which opened in 2009 is located in the platinum mall and houses Odeon cinema alongside so much  choice for food and drink that you could probably eat out every day for a year and have something different each time. The QUBE was extended this spring with nine new restaurants Ask, Barburrito, Bella Italia, Coast to Coast, Chiquito, Five Guys, Subway, TGI Fridays and Thaikhun All of the restaurants in the QUBE  have awesome menus with something for everyone. To see the full list of dining choices at the Metro Centre click here 







We arrived to find a 10 ft chef welcoming us to an evening set to tantalise our taste buds and then we proceeded to work our way through a taster menu....

 





Rainbows and Dreams Mocktail from Chiquto 

Prosecco for Mammy and Daddy


We tried food from our favourites, Wagamama and Chiquito but also tried some new places like Yo Sushi and Thaikum both of which I really enjoyed. The kids loved their milkshakes and mocktails and we had such fun meeting the Metrognomes (who you can see throughout the Summer Holiday)






We 

I'm amazed by the choice and would highly recommend a trip up to test out some of the eateries on offer, we've recently been back and we popped into Coast to Coast for drinks and then Wagamama for food, but seriously the choice is so vast you couldn't go hungry


Thumbs up from Mr Monkeyfeet (high praise indeed)


Showing of his goody bag 'haul'


Gorgeous Coast To Coast Cheese Cake

Pink Lemonade


Showing Off our Wagamama Apron

The Fabulous North East Family Fun, Our favourite Family 


If you are looking for family fun and food you should definitely pop along next weekend (2nd and 3rd July) there will be fairground rides and retailer sampling in Exhibition Square and a giant beach in Town Square. A chance to check out (STAR WARS ALERT!!!) 99th Garrison , Disney Princesses, panto characters from Nice Swan Theatre and the hilarious Granny Turismos. and our pals The Metrognomes will be back with their very own Kids' Club craft event in The Village and giant games in Upper Green Mall. 


Wednesday, 22 June 2016

Educational Play The Schleich Way

I've seen Schleich figures in many shops and visitor attractions over the years but we have never owned any, just recently we were contacted to see if we would help out with a new campaign they are launching ' Educational Play The Schleich Way'

So Schleich have launched a catalogue with ideas and games on how to use the figures in their range for the most educational benefit. Now I'm one of those mums who sees learning in everything we do and I love making up games and plays with the kids, on a recent holiday we forgot to pack our card and to be brutally honest there are only so many times I can cope with Monster High Top Trumps, so I resorted to making games up.... We played 'What animal am I' a lot and I now cant wait to try that again but with some of our new figures. We also played Bedroom Boules. Bed Golf and Finger football! All the games we made up with things we had to hand so it just goes to show you don't need fancy technology and a house full of toys to entertain the kids! So you can imagine this project sounded right up my street


you can download the brochure here or by clicking this image


The brochure is free and if you are a bit cynical. like me, its not just a blatant advert for Schleich toys! There are loads of helpful bits of information about play, with game ideas, information on language development and tips to encourage play and combat boredom. I love that the games and ideas suggested can be adapted for your situation. 




Keeping in mind some of the ideas on Balanced play and different game ideas we took the opportunity to throw our new Schleich animals in the rucksack on a trip out....


First we talked about perspective and optical illusions, aaaaargh elephant in the road!




Then we did some role play in the car where the kids made up a space pony/ alien zebra story!


Termite tried her hand ant some disappearing animal tricks.


There was some 'fungus amungus' dressage (I played no part in that idea it was all them!!!)


And then we shared our dinner 

I love the idea behind the brochure and man alive I get the attraction with Schleich figures the quality and detail is awesome and even the kids noticed a difference when they got their hands on them with comments like 'ooh thats heavy' and 'ee look at the wrinkles on this elephant'!

There is also a competition in the brochure, not that you need any more encouragement to download it,  to win £100 worth of toys thanks to Schleich and Uk Mums TV