Hey Doodle!

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Being mum to a two year old is exhausting. Eliza is currently in to everything and flits from one activity to the next in the blink of an eye, so when you come across something that keeps her sat in a chair for more than five minutes you know it’s something special.

We were recently gifted this erasable silicone story book from a brand called Hey Doodle, who I admit, I had never heard of before. From their website:

“HeyDoodle is a range of sustainable and educational wipe-clean silicone activity mats aimed at children aged 2 to 7. Featuring a new type of canvas, HeyDoodle offers parents, grandparents and kids a limitless and reusable drawing platform. Each mat contains hours of fun in colouring, tracing, and doodling and then hours more by simply using a damp cloth to reset the canvas. Perfect for all forms of travel, cafes & restaurants, hotel and waiting rooms, office receptions – anywhere you need to entertain kids in a fun and educational way”.

Eliza loves colouring (usually for 30 seconds at a time) so I knew this would be a hit with her, but I didn’t anticipate how much of a hit! She lasted a good twenty minutes at the table colouring the book and exploring the story; she would have gone longer if I hadn’t have been dinner time!

I was a little bit sceptical about how easy it would be to erase her efforts ready to start again, but all I needed was a damp cloth and it wiped away effortlessly. This was also true for the pen that found its way on to the table!

We used this again the next day when we went out for dinner, we knew we’d have a bit of a wait and we didn’t really want to resort to letting Eliza play with our phones. Again, Hey Doodle was the perfect solution, keeping her occupied, and as space was limited we kept it folded up so she could just do one page at a time.

With Christmas rapidly approaching, both Bob and I agree that Hey Doodle makes for the perfect gift- we are going to get Eliza one of their placemats for her santa sack, and as our friend’s little ones grow up they will also be getting sets from the brand!

The set we were gifted is this one, it costs £24.99 and is beautifully packaged and 100% something we will use over and over again for years to come.

Nice one Hey Doodle, I may finally get to drink a cup of tea in peace!

Gift ideas for toddlers*

[Post contains products that were gifted]

Recently Eliza and I were lucky enough to be sent a selection of toys which we have been trying out over recent weeks. With Christmas fast approaching I thought now was a good time to share the ones we love the most incase anyone else is struggling with what to get their toddler (because somehow my baby is now a toddler, complete with attitude) this festive season.

You’ll have to excuse the quality of the photos, trying to get Eliza to stay in one place long enough is just impossible these days!

This first toy is the Geomag Magiccube magnetic cubes, a great introduction to building blocks. This set is £29.99 and comes with 13 coloured cubes in different shapes plus wheels. The building possibilities are endless and both Bob and I have spent many a happy hour making various constructions with Eliza; to be honest we get as much out of these as she does! All parts of this set are made with 100% recycled plastic too, so you get bonus points for the planet!

Next up we have the Dantoy Bioplastic gardening kit, £30, which has very quickly become one of Eliza’s favourite things ever. She loves planting out her carrots and watering them (and us, and Pablo) and as well as being both 100% sustainable and recyclable, it also is great for developing her fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination. We love this, even if I am finding carrots in all kinds of places!

Another fabulous piece from Dantoy (we are a big fan of this brand) is the Blue Marine large dumper truck, £22.94. Eliza loves racing this around the living room and loading/unloading her smaller toys (and cat toys, my phone and whatever else she finds) endlessly. This will be really great in the Spring and Summer too when we get her sand and water table in to operation. This is another sustainable piece made from recycled marine products such as fishing nets.

We hope you’ve found this guide useful, I would love to know what toys your little ones are loving right now.

Posted in baby, gifts


The Self-Cleaning Bug-Busting Bottle from LYT

LYT UV-C Bottles and Caps are the perfect way to get the purest tasting water on the go.


They do not filter your water but use ultraviolet light to keep your bottle clean and fresh. Powerful ultraviolet light is your family’s new favourite tech. Built right into the cap, our these-working rays are on the same wavelength as the UV used to sanitise operating theatres and water treatment plants.

These UV-C rays destroy various micro-organisms in your drinking water. Third-Party tested to kill 99.9% of e-coli in your water.


Sip back and relax with the LYT bottle cap which stops odours from breeding inside your water bottle. Every hour, powerful UV rays in the cap automatically activate, keeping your bottle fresh and clean keeping odour and everyday funk away from the bottle.

The LYT Bottle Cap is compatible with the vast majority of cola-style bottle brands. The most popular brands include: Chilly’s, S’Well, & S’ip.


The bottle is lightweight and uses premium 18/8 stainless steel. With double-walled vacuum insulation, it will keep drinks ice-cold for 24 hours and hot for up to 12 hours. The bottle is 100% BPA-free.


LYT Cap is charged using a patented port-less charging technology to ensure no water leaks into the unit making it ultra-water-proof. UV technology has a 99.9% rate including nasties such as E-coli. The bottle won’t filter chemicals, metals and, organics that is why it is best filled with water from a Zerowater filtering system which removes 99.6% of all total dissolved solids. 

The 500ml LYT UV-C Bottle costs £49.99 from Zerowater.co.uk

Xmas 2021 Jewellery Gifts that Won’t Break the Bank*

Photo by Arteum.ro on Unsplash

Christmas is right around the corner and depending on what happens next we could be looking at another lockdown or at least a socially-distanced holiday. But whatever happens you might be looking for something special that won’t break the bank. Jewellery and accessories are the perfect answer as they indicate thoughtfulness and will last a long time if looked after.

Precious Metals and Gemstones

Most intricate jewellery is made from precious metals or precious gemstones. Gold, silver and platinum are standard for modern-day pieces. These metals are typically accompanied by stones like diamond and ruby. Whatever the piece, the most beautiful designs work best when paired correctly. For example, a stunning and deep sapphire ring is best offset by understated white gold. As with pairing anything, the trick is to let each material complement each other rather than one overpowering the other. 

Pandora Charm Bracelets

Pandora jewellery is of exceptional quality for a high street retail chain. One of the flagship products, the charm bracelet, is desired because you can add charms. Charms are small trinkets that usually signify something like a heart for Valentine’s Day. Because of this, charms are highly collectable, and prices range from relatively cheap into the hundreds. But because each charm means something, they are gifts that keep giving as they make the perfect gift for someone who enjoys their designs and wants to create a unique collection.

Designer Watches

You might think designer watches are expensive and therefore out of your price range as a Xmas gift. While watch prices can reach astronomical proportions, you can pick up quality designs for less than the price of a new pair of shoes. Of course, Rolex and Patek Phillipe are out of most people’s price range. Still, Amazon and other online retailers offer Armani, Tommy Hilfiger, and Michael Kors watches at reasonable prices. These watches aren’t part of any exceptional range and won’t appreciate in value, but they are beautiful gifts for almost anyone.

Meaningful Jewellery

There is an endless number of jewellery designs from which you can choose. Yet, there are also some exceptional designs with meaning. Irish Claddagh rings are a good example, as are birthstone rings. Further to the design, the metals and stones hold special meaning. Jewellery like this makes fantastic gifts for someone as they are more personalized than standard designs. Of course, you can also purchase jewellery with religious significance such as a silver and gold crucifix for Catholics, gold Star of David for the Jewish or Islamic MashAllah praise earrings.

Trending Fragrance

Not actual jewellery, yet an excellent accompanying gift is fragrances. Fragrances are highly collectable, and trends increased over the festive period. Delicate perfumes make beautiful gifts with rings and necklaces for loved ones. And a musky scent with a designer watch will put a smile on the face of most men. Fragrances can become expensive, yet some of the most popular include Chanel No.5 and J’Adore by Christain Dior. However, at the moment, the highest trending designer fragrance for young women is Good Girl by Carolina Herrera and Tom Ford Noir for the guys.

The Perfect Gift for Mum’s to Be from Natural Birthing Company*

It’s been very quiet around here of late, right? Perhaps more so than ever before…
You see, I had all these grand plans to use the start of my maternity leave to plan and schedule content, and then keep it up whilst baby naps. What actually happened was I managed three days of maternity leave before my daughter decided to show up, with a short, sharp three hour labour. We’re now 6 weeks in and it turns out she is one of those babies who refuses daytime sleep (but I forgive her because she is great at night!).

So this post was actually supposed to be a product review, however due to aforementioned speedy (and shock) labour I never actually got a chance to even get my hospital bag out of the car, let alone use what was in it until long after the event! So in the spirit of Christmas I’m here to tell you THE most perfect gift you can give to anyone expecting a baby, the Mamas Moments Birthing Essentials Gift Pack from Natural Birthing Company.

Gifted Product

I was genuinely really excited to have this packed in my hospital bag, and having given them a little try since I can say with confidence that these would make a wonderful gift for any expectant mother (or a present to yourself if you are the expectant mother).

For £20 you get a lovely little pouch containing four products:

Cool It Mama (Cooling Body Spritz) to help calm and revitalise you (and your birth partner) during labour. I actually found this quite useful post-birth on the ward as we had to stay in overnight. It was BOILING on the ward and I was exhausted yet to afraid to sleep lest my brand new human needed me. This spray really did make me feel a little bit more human and a little less like I was about to melt.

Relax and Breathe (Calming Massage Oil) this is supposed to help ease any feelings of discomfort and is a good way to get your birth partner involved during labour. It certainly smells good! Had my labour been slower I think a massage with this would have done me the world of good, if for no other reason than to keep me grounded and stop me tensing up so much in my back and shoulders!

Bottoms Up (Soothing Bottom Spray) I am not exaggerating when I say this spray saved me in the two weeks post-birth. I tore, and grazed, and had stitches and nobody warns you about just how painful recovery from birth can be, even from a “normal” vaginal delivery. Going for a wee felt like torture but one thing (the only thing) that really eased that pain was spritzing this on a maternity pad as well as direct on the skin. I got through so much of this and cannot recommend it enough- that and a jug so you can pour warm water “down there” when you pee; it took me a few days to believe this could help, trust me, it does and you should do it!

Sleep Mama (Relaxing Pillow Mist) this is another lovely post-birth product and one I use on the rare nights when I struggle to drift off- rare as these days my eyes are shut before my head hits the pillow but I still enjoy the soothing scent of lavender and other essential oils for a calming sleep experience.

You can find this gift set, and the other products from Natural Birthing Company in Boots and Holland and Barrett as well as from various online retailers such as Amazon and Feel Unique.

This might be the only Christmas gift-guide/gift idea I post this year, but damn it’s a good ‘un!