Friday, 28 July 2017

Keeping Up Appearances

Today I have a guest post from the lovely Vicky over at Tactical MummyVicky lives at home with her husband, Pickle, the dog and two cats. The name ‘Tactical Mummy’ comes from a conversation Vicky had with one of her very best mummy friends – she knows who she is. At the time, Vicky was bemoaning Pickle’s refusal to eat anything except beans on toast. Her friend confessed that that very evening she had resorted to feeding her son a ‘tactical’ peanut butter sandwich. To Vicky, that was what being a Mummy was all about. We all of us strive for perfection, but sometimes, along the way we fall short of our ideals. But if we see these moments, not as failure, but as a way of ensuring the survival of both our sanity and our little ones, then employing these tactics is surely a vital part of the immeasurably difficult but wonderful job of mummying? And this is how The Tactical Mummy was born.

Here is Vicky's post about Keeping up appearances as a Mummy:

Your hair looks nice,’ declares Daddy, out of the blue.
Mummy looks at Daddy slightly askance and then briefly glances at her phone to check it’s definitely not April Fools’ Day.
She can’t remember the last time she did her hair properly. She thinks longingly of those days when she spent a good hour in front of the mirror: carefully straightening, teasing and applying swish products from the upmarket salon she used to be able to afford. They are no more. Now it’s a quick rinse under the shower if she’s lucky and straight into the ‘mum bun’, which is in fact a fashion statement in itself. Or, rather, a complete disregard for any kind of fashion and instead a statement that Mummy is Too Tired, Can’t Be Bothered and Has Stopped Caring.
What do you mean?’ asks Mummy suspiciously.
Daddy stutters slightly.
I mean, it looks less, you know. Frizzy. Less like pubes and more naturally wavy.’
Mummy feels a bit sorry for him. She would be upset, except that she herself is perfectly aware of the peculiar wispy bits that seem to have developed, sticking sideways out of the side of her head, ever since the Pickle made his appearance. The problem, Mummy thinks to herself, is that not that he referred to her hair as pubes, but that he is indeed correct.
Mummy wonders when she actually stopped caring.
When exactly was the point at which she decided that she could quite happily wear ten-year-old Bridget Jones knickers and ripped jeans? (Not trendily ripped, mind you, but ripped due to the number of times she has knelt down to change the Pickle).
It’s not that she doesn’t care about what she looks like – she just doesn’t have time to care. And if she allowed herself to actually care, then she probably wouldn’t leave the house at all and would be swigging wine far before the sun descended over the designated yard arm (which seems to vary considerably, depending on the number of Pickle-tantrums in a day, anyhow).
In some ways, it gives Mummy a certain level of freedom. No one expects her to look wide-eyed and bushy tailed, with make-up carefully applied, nor do they expect her to sashay down the pavement in the latest bang-on-trend outfit. As long as Pickle is dressed perfectly from head to toe in Baby Joules, Mummy knows no one is really going to care if she arrives in an old sack.
Sad though it is, Mummy feels that there is something satisfying in knowing that someone else always comes first. For the first time in her life, she is more concerned over someone else’s appearance and well-being than her own. And because she is basically entitled – nay required – to dress in the Mum Uniform of leggings, t-shirt and baggy cardy with milk stains, why on earth go to all that bother of applying mascara?
Mummy does feel slightly sorry for Daddy though, who probably did not sign up to be with someone whose hair resembles pubes, has a slightly baggy mum-tum and whose idea of dressing up for the evening is basically wearing clothes that does not have yesterday’s banana smushed into them.
On balance, she thinks it was pretty nice of him to find something to complement at all.
Mummy smiles, ignores the pube comment and says ‘thank you dear’.
Daddy breathes a sigh of obvious relief. What he doesn’t know is that Mummy is also secretly planning to hit the hairdressers and the high street the very next day, armed with his credit card and a copy of Vogue a childless friend accidentally left behind the last time they came to see Pickle in his Baby Joules. One really does have to draw the line somewhere, and Mummy feels that having your hair compared to pubes is probably it. 

*Mummy would love to know how you deal with those peculiar post-baby wispy bits and whether your own appearance has become second to that of your baby’s since giving birth.

Thank you Vicky I'm sure a lot of you Mummy's can relate to the post baby wispy bits, I still have some 2 and half years later.

You can find Vicky over on the following pages: 

Thursday, 27 July 2017

Our Staycation Pontins Camber Sands

We've not be long back from a last minute holiday that we booked to Pontins Camber Sands. Now one the things I know you shouldn't do when you have booked a holiday is look up reviews. This was a big mistake, as it made me worry about what we had booked, as the reviews were so bad. I wanted to share with you our experience of staying with Pontins and what we got up to on our week away. 

A holiday is what you make it.  The apartment that we stayed in was ok,from the reviews that I had read a lot of people were saying that they had broken beds and there wasn't a good enough amount of kitchen equipment. For us the apartment we stayed in had none of these issues. We did however feel that the apartment we stayed in could have been cleaned a whole lot better. 

When it came to the things to get up to at Pontins I have nothing to compare it to as we have never stayed in places like Pontins, Butlins, Park Resorts before so have no idea what the others are like.  

We visited the arcade quite a bit the 2p machines are far too addictive! We ended up collecting enough tickets to get Blake a few little prizes from the prize shop. Blake was even getting involved with using the 2p machines and going on a few rides. 

There was also a soft play area which Blake wasn't too keen on however there were two parks on site that Blake loved. The first was the Jurassic World which had many dinosaur models dotted around with 2 different slides.

There was also a park not far from the bar where the floor was all sand and the slide was on a large pirate ship. I can say that this park was definitely a hit with Blake.

They also had entertainment which we ended up not going to as Blake hated the loud noise which was a shame. 

Food wise it was expensive, the food was good but definitely not worth the price we paid. The on site shop is also pretty pricey too so it's worth heading into Rye or Hastings to find a supermarket instead. 

We got up to quite a bit outside of Pontins too and headed to Rye one day to see what they had there. Unfortunately Rye Castle and a National trust house we had planned to visit was closed.  So we ended up going to a local church and climbing up to the bell tower and in Stuart's case the roof. This was then followed by a lovely lunch a cafe called the Fletcher's which we full recommend the sandwiches were so good. 

On another occasion we visited Camber Sands beach. On holiday visiting the beach and eating fish and chips is a must. We had a lovely time at the beach, Blake ended up getting into a puddle fully clothed and looked a right mess afterwards. However it was lovely to see him so happy and making memories. 

We also headed to Hastings one day where we ate lunch at Eat @The Stade this was again a lovely meal. Stuart and I both went for the ultimate burger which had, cheese, bacon and loads of mushrooms with a side salad and chips. We then visited the Bluereef aquarium which Blake loved and then headed to get some ice cream which again is a must when on holiday. 

So overall we had a lovely holiday. Have you ever been to Camber Sands? Or maybe you have stayed with Pontins before? I'd love to know. 

Wednesday, 26 July 2017

Win 1 of 2 VR Real Feel Racing Virtual Reality Systems

VR Real Feel Racing is the only virtual reality gaming system that gives you control with a real steering wheel.  Accelerate, brake and steer with Max Force Feedback to feel the vibrations in the steering wheel when you bump other racers or the wall! 

While other VR driving games may use head tilts to control the action, VR Real Feel™ Racing provides a far more intuitive driving system through the steering wheel.  

Featuring a 42mm lens headset that harnesses the power of Apple or Android™ smartphones to deliver pixel-popping graphics in stereo 3D and a patented Bluetooth™ steering wheel with Max Force Feedback™, players can steer, accelerate, brake and change the view with the steering wheel. 

VR Real Feel Virtual Reality Car Racing Gaming System with Bluetooth Steering Wheel and Headset Goggles Viewer Glasses for iOS iPhone and Android.

Experience stunning 3D high definition graphics with pixel-popping graphics in stereo 3D with 42mm industry standard lenses for optimum viewing

Patented Bluetooth Max Force steering wheel to steer, accelerate and brake for ultimate control! Unlike other VR headsets, no more tilting head to turn - this is the way virtual reality racing was meant to be!

VR headset has a comfortable foam face, adjustable straps, and an adjustable phone cradle that will hold up to an iPhone 7 Plus

Available now for £39.99  from Smyths , Toys R Us , Amazon , Halfords and Debenhams

- Enter via the rafflecopter below
- Leave a comment below anwsering the question in the rafflecopter 
- The more entries you complete the better the chance of winning

- This competition will close on  2nd of August 2017 at 12.00am GMT 
- The winner will be chosen at random and notified via email, twitter or facebook
- Open to UK residents ONLY
- You must be a UK resident and over 16

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Win Jungle Jam Brazil book

Today I have been given the chance for one lucky person to win the second book in the Jungle Jam series Jungle Jam in Brazil. 

Gina the Giraffe loves being part of the Jungle Jam band but she is nervous about leaving her home and trying new things.
Follow Gina on her courageous journey and learn about the fabulous music and culture of Brazil.
“The band is getting ready for their biggest show yet. 
They are going to Brazil in a jumbo jet.”

- Enter via the rafflecopter below
- Leave a comment below anwsering the question in the rafflecopter 
- The more entries you complete the better the chance of winning

- This competition will close on  2nd of August 2017 at 12.00am GMT 
- The winner will be chosen at random and notified via email, twitter or facebook
- Open to UK residents ONLY
- You must be a UK resident and over 16

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, 24 July 2017

Living Arrows - 30/52

 You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth” by Kahlil Gibran

This week has been a busy one for us as we headed to Pontins Camber Sands as a last minute holiday before the schools broke up. I really struggled this week for choosing a photo of Blake as I managed to capture some lovely moments, from fun on the beach to enjoying the arcade. 

I settled on this photo as it was Blake's first time in an arcade, and he absolute loved the 2p machines. Does anyone else find them machines so addictive? I swear we spent quite a bit in there so we could get enough tickets to choose some prizes for Blake. I just love how much he is concentrating in this photo as he was being so careful putting the coins in the slot, we even let him have his own little pot of 2p coins. 

Living Arrows