• Days Out,  Kids Entertainment,  Reviews

    Top 7 Things to do along the M62 Corridor this Summer

    The summer holidays have landed… I’m only just starting week three and already pulling my hair out thinking of what to do with the kids. I’ve been researching a bit and recounting some previous great days out, so thought I’d share with you the top seven places I intend to visit over the next few weeks. Driving too long with my two can be a trauma at times so I’ve looked for simple routes, all along the M62… starting East and moving over to the West (and all places I can get to before Toy Story 2 finishes and all hell breaks loose). #1 The Deep- Hull I really love…

  • Blogs,  Child Development,  Parenting

    The Urgent Rush

    Crawling, walking, talking, feeding themselves, tripod grips, potty training, counting, saying the alphabet, dressing themselves, able to brush their own teeth… it’s literally one thing after another from birth to adulthood that a child has to start doing… and we seem to be in an urgent rush to get them all down! Why? For me potty training is the perfect example. Once the kids turned two it seemed that EVERYONE is interested in where you are up to with it. I don’t think a day goes by where I’m either asked about how they are getting on or I jump straight down someone’s throat to let them know how we…

  • Blogs,  Lifestyle

    Ten things that make me happy

    I’m often considered [wrongly IMO] a ‘miserable git’, so when Katie at Heels & Hooves tagged me to take part in the ’10 things that make me happy’ blogger challenge, I thought I’d rise to the occasion and prove I’m not such a misery after all. Wish me luck I might get stuck by no. 6, but here we go, in no particular order… #1 The Terrible Twins Of couse the boys had to be numero uno, whilst they drive me up the wall, stop me sleeping, interrupt gin time and all the other parenting woes, they bring so much to my life and I can’t imagine life without them. Being a…

  • Children's Health,  Health,  Reviews

    Tamanu Balm by Tropic

    Tropic Ambassador (and lovely neighbour of mine), Louise, kindly sent me over a little pot of magic called Tamanu Balm to try out with the kids. Knowing that I had three year old twin boys in the house, I think Louise might have assumed we have lots of bumps, scrapes, splinters, bruises, rashes… and she assumed correctly!  The balm comes with quite an extensive list of ailments that Tropic believe it is great for and the menu also claims that it is an ‘all-in-one skin saviour’. It retails at £16 for a small pot, so at that price I thought I’d give it a proper run for it’s money over…

  • Adoption,  Blogs,  Humour,  Working Parent

    Dumbing Down?

    I’m writing today’s blog as I catch up on yesterday’s episode of Love Island… the one after the post Casa Amor recoupling episode… you know that s*** is about to hit the fan. So, I’ll start with an apology for poor grammar and spelling ‘cos I’m well distracted, ain’t I’  (said in my best Essex accent).  For you non-Love Islanders; don’t worry this post isn’t going to be about how Georgia is going to react to that cheating scum bag Josh or how brilliant it is to see Wes getting his karma as he’s ‘mugged off’ by the villa’s resident skank Meg… Yes I went there, if you watched it…

  • Home Products,  Reviews,  Sleep

    Kid’Sleep – Classic Sleep Trainer

    Review: Claessens’ Kids Kid’Sleep Classic Sleep Trainer Sleep is for losers… said no one… ever! I love my sleep, my god I NEED sleep! Pre-kids I was a 10 hours a night kinda guy and now I’m still in need of a good 8… but probably average about 6-7 hours now thanks to the Claessens’ Kids Kid’Sleep Classic Sleep Trainer … or as we call it in our house, ‘The Rabbit Clock’. The boys were bought this clock at Christmas by Aunty Helen (with a gentle prompt from Daddy!) which was perfect timing as we had gone through a period of poor sleep with Haribo, which I wrote about a…

  • Blogs,  Discipline & Boundaries,  Parenting

    Other People’s Children

    We all know how difficult it is as parents to toddlers, who are prone to act and behave in ways we’d sometimes prefer they didn’t, but we accept and understand they are growing, learning and at an innocent age that needs nurturing and guiding. As a father to two year-old twin boys, not a day goes by where I don’t see them getting a bit heavy handed, snatching, not sharing and all the rest… but also, not a day goes by where I don’t challenge this behaviour and use these moments to teach them about acceptable behaviour. I’m pretty sure I’m talking to a brick wall most of the time,…

  • Blogs,  Dads,  Father's Day

    Dads Like Presents Too!

    Last year was my first Father’s Day and to say I was excited to receive my first set of extra gifts for the year was an understatement! My birthday is only a few weeks before Christmas, so it’s a long time to wait to get gifts again… it’s rare I get an acknowledgement on Valentines Day (other than the odd inappropriate card) and Easter can be hit and miss with an egg (or at least one of any quality chocolate!). As the day approached I spent hours (slightly exaggerated) pondering what my other half was planning with the kids; a nice meal out? a lavish gift? a homemade card or…

  • Adoption,  Blogs,  Share A Story

    This thing just got REAL!: Our Adoption Journey (Part Two)

    Panel day arrived and I’d hardly slept the night before… Craig was fine, nothing keeps that man from snoring. I remember sitting in the car outside and thinking I was going to throw up, Craig was fine… (really wanted to hate him for being fine but remembered I needed to give the impression to the panel that I loved everything about him haha). We walked into a room with 12 people sat around a table staring at us (TWELVE!!!), as I sat down I nearly chucked a glass of water all over the place which Craig found hilarious but only sent me into a nervous spin. The chair, a stern…

  • Adoption,  Blogs,  Share A Story

    Poked & Prodded: Our Adoption Journey (Part One)

    As we’re celebrating National Tell A Story Month, I thought I would use the opportunity to share our story about how we came to be adoptive parents. Being a dad was something I had always dreamed about, and for quite a while adoption was something really on my mind, however it wasn’t on my partner’s. We had brief conversations about having kids over a few years but it became clear that it just wasn’t something Craig wanted to do. So, I finally swallowed that dream and tried to moved on from the idea. About 6 months later, Craig was working away in India and totally out of the blue sent…

  • Adoption,  Share A Story

    Guest Blog: Accepting the Past, Loving the Present, Shaping the Future

    Our next Guest Post for National Share A Story Month is a real heart-string-puller! The author wishes to remain anonymous, which is understandable given the sensitive nature of adoption. One not to miss! Enjoy!   Accepting the Past, Loving the Present, Shaping the Future by an Adoptive Parent  “Fancy writing a guest blog?” my mate Phil said. I thought NOPE but here I am?! I’ll stay anonymous so you can moan at Phil and Pips if you don’t like this one. We love stories in our house, we have a three and four year old who loves picture books, lift the flap books (some now flapless), made up stories (usually…

  • New Mum,  Pregnancy,  Share A Story

    Guest Blog: Putting Midwifery to the Test!

    Our next Guest Blogger, for National Tell A Story Month, is Helen Wright. A Midwife from the North-West and a new mum. Here, Helen shares her experience of trying to wrap her ‘midwife head’ around becoming a mum. Just a pre-warning… we give Helen a good quizzing at the end so its a long one… well worth the read but you may want to save the link for when you have a good 10 minutes to take it all in! 😀   Putting Midwifery to the Test by Helen Wright A qualified midwife for over 10 years and an unqualified mother for 4 months… I love my job and have…

  • Fostering,  Share A Story

    Guest Blog: Keep Calm and Foster On!

    Our first Guest Blog for National Share A Story Month is from Foster Carer, Anna Edwards. Anna has fostered for 7 years now and could probably write a blog a day with the varied experiences she has had. Here she gives us a whistle stop tour of her journey so far…   Keep Calm and Foster On! by Anna Edwards It was with butterflies of fear and excitement in my belly when I opened the door to my first placement, (two gorgeous little girls staring at me with wide eyes!) I had no idea how much my life was going to change from that moment on. It’s been seven years…

  • Books,  Reviews

    The Family Book by Todd Parr

    I really wanted to share one of my favourite kids books that I read with my boys regularly and they love it… it’s called ‘The Family Book’ by Todd Parr. Todd, from Berkeley (California) was originally an artist and this really shows in his books – bright, colourful and creative illustrations that my kids seem to really respond to. It’s a book that was recommended to me as a useful one for adopted children… and also as a same-sex parent family, but it goes beyond that. In my opinion it should be on the shelf in every family home and school as it’s an excellent way to start educating children…

  • Blogs,  Health,  Potty Training

    The Brown Stuff (and I’m not talking about chocolate!)

    I’m going to start this blog with an apology… because I am about to spend the next 700 words or so on the subject of ‘POO’… and not just poo… but Toddler Diarrhoea… in twins! Yes people it’s a real thing and I have it twice over and coming at me from every direction! So, needless to say, read on at your own peril! We were aware of the boys diagnosis of Toddler Diarrhoea from the word go, the foster carer had given us plenty of warning about the smell but she did fail to mention the volume and frequency… which I think are pretty important details to know when…