A Littlelondoner | A Little Londoner

MAKING BIG DECISIONS AS PARENTS – IS OUR CHILD READY FOR SCHOOL?

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Oh Crap, We Are The Parents……Big Girl Decisions. Last week I think we finally realised that we are grown ups, parents and decision makers when it comes to the kids. Amelia is almost 4, (end of March) and to be honest we have really just winged it along in the last 4 years (Now let's be clear here when I talk about winging it, it's far from being a breeze or walk in the park, there's been lots of struggles, wanting to pull our hair out and as we come close to being parents for four years, sometimes we look back and feel as though we have barely had the chance to come up for air in those 4 years, and can't quite believe that we are at the stage of making "Adult" decisions for our little girl).We have never been in a position where we have had to seriously sit down and talk about her future, that our decisions could shape her life, the weaning, toilet training, choosing a nursery, teaching her rules, they just came along naturally and we found our way, but this week we had to make a big decision. What am I taking about? SCHOOL or BIG SCHOOL as Amelia calls it. The acceptance letters to Primary Schools in Ireland will be out in the next few weeks and any parent with a 4-6 year old is no doubt questioning….Is My Child Ready For School?

 

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52 Week Money Challenge ~ Are You In?

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Last year I had seen a few posts on the '52 Week Money Challenge'. I'm not a great saver, but I'm good for throwing coins into a jar and keeping them there! So I thought this would be a great challenge and make me save without realising I was actually doing so. The point of the '52 Week Challenge' is that by the 52nd week of the year, you will have saved almost €/£1400.

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When You Tire Of London, You Tire Of Life ~A Little London Trip

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When You Tire Of London, You Tire Of Life ~ Samuel Johnson

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The Christmas Eve Box

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For children around the world, Christmas Eve is perhaps the most exciting night of the year. They sleep with one eye open, and they wait in anticipation for Santa to arrive with his sack stuffed full of presents.

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The Perfect Gift For New Parents| The Birth Poster

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If you’re like me and have spent the last 10 years or so buying baby gifts, whether it's for new parents, a godchild, niece or nephew, you will know that sometimes it's incredibly difficult to find something that's completely unique. For many parents that are on #2,3 or 4 chances are they have all the newborn toys, teethers and a mountain of soft toys, as well as an abundance of clothes. I have found the perfect gift and not only a gift for others, it would make a really beautiful keepsake for yourself and your child as they get older. Unique and timeless. Let me introduce you to The Birth Poster

 

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Christmas Gift Ideas For Little Girls & Toddler Boys

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There are so many amazing gift guides out there at the minute, I love reading them on blogs, IG Stories and Snapchat. My favourite defiantly has been my friend Emma's over on IG stories…..cheers Emma, the overdraft is in full drive since watching your snaps 😂 Check her out here.

So rather than have another gift guide, I thought I'd share with you exactly what our two kids are getting from a combination of the big man in red, grandparents and family. We have tried to have been as practical as possible this year and got the kids combination gifts that they will both use and play with together and eliminate as much of the fantastic plastic that we can! There are two Frozen Microphones….because I couldn't be dealing with the arguments! 

Its a very real gift guide, and hopefully if you are still wondering what to get your little ones (because you can't find that "must have toy" they have asked for 1,000 times) or you have other smallies in your family to buy for, this will hopefully help you along the way.

For those that are new here, Amelia is 3.5 (going on 13) and my tractor obsessed little boy Harry, who is 20 months. 

 

 

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How We Finally Said Goodbye To 5am Wake Up Calls

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What Amelia is great at, is eating, when it comes to sleep, it’s always been a battle. We get months of her being a great sleeper and then she starts sliding down the slippery slope, taking us all with her and the early morning wakenings get early and early. Now firstly, I have to add, we have never had a problem with Amelia going to sleep. We have a set routine of bath (every other night), teeth brushed, into her pj’s, story and asleep by 7pm. She is always happy to go to bed,and never comes back downstairs. Her problem is that she is ready to take on the world before the birds have even woken, meaning the whole house is awake, and many times Mummy and daddy loosing their shit in the hallway with her at 5am…..trying to whisper in order not to wake Harry, while her “No,no, no’s” get louder and louder as we take her back to her room. If Amelia was to come into our bed and ACTUALLY go back to sleep, I’d quite happily welcome her in for a cuddle, but she was looking for an apple and a movie every morning! (more…)

Annabel Karmel Feeding Our Kids For 25 Years

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From the very first day of Weaning Amelia I have been using Annabel Karmel cookbooks, I reckon I have about 10 in my collection at this stage. Her books were recommended by friends and I have continued to use the recipes past the Weaning stages and adapt for our our family. (more…)

Top 10 Christmas Dresses For Toddler Girls

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Have you started your shopping yet? Are the Santa presents hiding in the attic, boot of the car or Granny's house (that's where ours are hiding safely, safe out of the reach of little hands.

Dressing the kids for the festive holidays is next on the list, once Santa has been covered. I've put together a list of my top 10 favourite dresses for Toddler Girls for this Christmas. Velvet is as popular with kids clothing as adults and many of the dresses I've picked are beautiful soft velvet.Happy Shopping!

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Winter Clothing Wish List ~ Mama and Kids

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Now that winter is most definitely here, well in Ireland it is, I've spent the dark nights thrawling through the shops online (it's the only way to shop with two smallies), and filling up my virtual baskets with everything I can't afford, something we all do right? I've bought a few bits from the list below….and the rest, well sure I can dream….champagne lifestyle with lemonade money and all that! 

To be fair, I think the most expensive thing in my basket is €79, but it all adds up. I'm loving greys, blacks and dusky punks this season.  I've picked out my favourite bits, and while I love these colours on the kids, I still do veer to the brighter colours as well, Mothercare and M&S have some gorgeous bits. You can see a recent post here on my picks from M&S for the kids. I love COS for simple colours, the Little bird range from Mothercare for Amelia, and H&M for boys clothes. I don't find the quality of the girls clothes in H&M any different from Primark/Penneys and its more expensive.

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Child Not Wearing Helmet V’s Acquired Brain Injury

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The family that cycle together stay together….or it goes something like that!

You may have noticed over the last few months, especially over the summer we have been out on our bikes A LOT. My husband and I took advantage of the Cycle To Work Scheme and invested in two bikes, a bike trailer for the kids that comes with a rain and bug shield and helmets for us all, which we purchased through Halfords. It's been a free form of entertainment and we have had lovely days out on various bike trails, taking a picnic with us. I'm a huge advocate for Road and bike safety, and I'll not lie, when I see kids on scooters and bikes without their helmets (and adults)….I want to go over and tell them or more importantly their parents, to "put that helmet on, protect your little brain and don't be be another statistic of having an Acquired Brain Injury".

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Harry At 18 Months

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When I first went to write this, I went into my  search engine to have a read of Amelia's 18 month update….you know, to do what we do best and compare! While she was babbling away and calling her daddy by his name, she still was bare foot, and didn't walk for another month. While I've slowed down with the blog, and find Instagram another great way to document our update, I'm so glad I had that post to read back over, and the rest. I ended up reading back through them all!

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Winter Salad ~ Butternut Squash With Feta and Sticky Pecans

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Just after I had Harry we all went out for  lunch one day. I had a butternut squash salad with sticky pecans and it was so good, I still think about it! It's not on the menu anymore and last week I decided I would attempt to make it myself . Now I'm hooked again! I think this is something I'll be making A LOT over the next few months. Once you have your stash of sticky pecans made up and a jar of balsamic onion in the fridge, it takes no time to put this salad together.

Autumn and winter can have us turning for the comfort food, and salads are reserved for summer. This salad is healthy, tasty and crunchy with balance of sweet (sticky pecans) and tart (balsamic red onion). It's great as a lunch alone or side salad. I even think on Christmas Day for those who don't like the usual vegetables it's a lovely colourful salad to have on the table.

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Slugs, Snails and Puppy Dogs Tails….An Autumn Wardrobe That Will Last Through Toddler Play

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While my two kids are not yet in school and I don't have to go on the hunt for school  uniforms, they are in Montessori (Amelia 5 mornings per week) and Nursery (Harry 2 mornings per week), meaning A LOT of clothes are worn and washed, and while I would love to have a separate wardrobe of "School Clothes" "Good Clothes", I don't have the funds to stretch to that (who does?). Even on the days Harry is not in nursery, we could still have two outfit changes a day, because, you know, he is a boy and  "What are little boys made of? Slugs and snails, And puppy-dogs' tails."That's what little boys are made of" Never a truer word for my boy. If there's dirt he will find it. If he can make a mess, it will end up on his clothes. If he can smash it, he is right there with it in his hand. If he can draw on it, yes, the pen is in his hand. 

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Suggestions For Successful School Trip Locations

School trips are amazing, aren't they? They are such a wonderful thing to get your kids enthusiastic about going to school. This is because they get to go out and experience some of the World, see new things, and spend some quality time with their mates.

 

But they can be a bit of a nightmare to organise and run. Which you might already know if you have been roped into helping on one. It's funny, though, because a lot of this hassle can be avoided though by picking a location that will engage the children’s interest in the first place.  

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Living It Large: How To Deal With Life In A Big City

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As we all know, living in a big city is different from any other sort of living experience. It has its good points and bad points: on one hand there’s so much to do, so much diversity and such a range of incredible cultural experiences. But on the other hand, the frantic pace of life doesn’t suit everyone, and of course cities can be horrendously overpriced. Still, if you aren’t a big city fan but you have to stay there for family or work reasons, there are things you can do to help yourself be happy.

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Ensure Your Child Stays Away From Bugs During The Cold By Making These Home Changes

One of the top things we hate about the cold weather is the bugs it brings. In fact, it’s hard to get through winter without one of the kids getting a cold. And while we can’t control the weather, we can change what it’s like inside the home. Therefore, here are some changes to the home you should make to ensure your child stays away from bugs during the cold.

 

Switch to a higher tog duvet

 

It’s often down to the bedding when kids get bugs in winter. After all, if they are cold in the night, they might end up shivering. And this can lower your child’s immune system, causing them to be more at risk of bugs. Therefore, to ensure this doesn’t occur, you need to make sure they have good bedding which will ensure they stay the right temperature. One thing you should do is replace the duvet during the cold months. You should opt for a higher tog such as a 13.5 which will ensure your little one stays nice and toasty during the cold weather. And you can always put this away when the weather gets nicer and replace it with a lower tog. But a good duvet will ensure your child stays warm and away from bugs while it’s so cold!

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Wet Rooms The Answer To Keeping A House Clean

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When it comes to bathrooms, you may have heard the term "wet room" used many times, but do you know exactly what a wet room is? What are wet room costs

It's a style of bathroom that has increased in popularity in recent times. A wet room is effectively a sealed bathroom – walls and floors are "tanked" (sealed with waterproof boarding or layers of matting) which stops water from seeping out. Normally the bathroom designer will also install a sloping floor leading down to a drain, so that excess water flows away.

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Is Your Bathroom Child Friendly?

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When you first had children, you probably went around your home making it as child-safe as possible. That means child locks on the cabinet doors, plug covers in the plug sockets. As well as a stairgate at the top and bottom of the stairs, and goodness knows what else.

 

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Travelling Through Time: Where To Spend Bank Holidays With Kids

There are never enough bank holidays in the year! Most people visit their family during bank holidays, turning them into a weekend packed with travelling, eating cakes, drinking tea, and playing with the grandparents. But, there’s another way to make the most of your bank holiday weekends: Use them to visit the UK with your children. Take them through the history of the country they live, little step by little step so that each day they can better understand what it is made of. Besides, there are some great historical sites around that will beat any good night story!

 

St Paul’s Cathedral

If you live in London or around, St Paul’s is not only an iconic monument but it is also one of the most recognizable place on the capital. While Saint Paul’s might seem a little too grown-up for young children, the cathedral is still running exhibitions and tours about the Great Fire until April 2017. These tours are family friendly, and will certainly be a great peak for your children into the past of London in a playful and pleasant way. But the cathedral offers too some interesting activities such as an acoustic experiment in the Whispering Gallery under the dome, or a stunning view of London if you feel up for a climb.

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Top 6 Tips for Choosing a Portable Bed for Your Kid

A portable bed can be a great investment for your child especially if your family are frequent travellers. Portable beds are not only good for holidays, but children's portable beds can also be useful for naptimes and day care beds. Portable beds are also beneficial in the transition process from crib to a regular bed. There is a vast range of choice of children’s portable beds, from toddler air mattresses, foldable toddler beds and portable toddler beds and cots. So, how do you decide which is the best portable bed for your child? Today, we’ll look at six key deciding points to help you choose the best bed for your needs.

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1. Travel Needs

One of the deciding factors for choosing a portable bed is how mobile you will need the bed to be. Depending on your preferred travel methods you will need to decide what best is most practical for you and your child.

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Clever Storage Ideas For Tiny Homes

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Living in a small house has plenty of benefits – they are easy to heat, cheaper to run, and can be incredibly cosy. But the biggest problem with living in a small and tiny home is that you suffer from a severe lack of storage. You will need to live as minimally as possible, but even then, there is a genuine struggle to find the space you need to keep things tidy and uncluttered. If this sounds familiar, read on. I’ve pulled together some ingenious tips for making the most out of your space – so let’s take a closer look.

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Pain-Killing Advice To Eliminate Those House Moving Headaches

Most people would agree that moving house with their entire family can create a lot of stress. There are just so many things to worry about that you’re sure to forget something important. Also, handling the paperwork and making sure the property purchase is legal can become complicated. Considering that, I wanted to offer some tips based on my experienced. We moved to a new property a couple of years ago, and I hated the entire process. However, I learned from my errors, and now hopefully you will too.

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