Thursday, July 24, 2014

Charlie's view

Hi, I'm Charlie. Mummy talks about me a lot on here, but she thought it was about time you got to know me better. Mummy asked me a few questions about some of my favourite things and here are my answers:

Favourite food

Boobies, hehe, sorry mummy says I am getting too old for these, but I only really have them just before bed, And sometimes if I can't sleep through the day or I get really, really upset or hurt myself. I know where they are now so I can lift her top if I am feeling cheeky, and point to them! I also like kinder bars, they are really sweet and milky. I also really like carrot and potato mash with baked beans, that's probably my best tea in the whole world.

Least favourite food

I do not like raspberries or strawberries, yuck, I always make a funny face if Mummy makes me eat one. Why are they so mushy? They make my face do a funny thing with the flavour.

Favourite toy

I love Blackburn Bear for bedtime (He is mummy's bear that her mum and dad bought her and he wears a dressing gown in Blackburn Rovers colours, so I think that's why he's called Blackburn Bear). He is really soft and snuggly. My favourite toy for during the day is my car. If you press it down it goes really fast. I'm glad mummy and daddy have wooden floors as it goes extra fast on them.

Least favourite toy

I do like all my toys, but I think I am now too old for Sophie the giraffe. She was really good to me when I had sore teeth, although I didn't really use her like Mummy wanted me to. But if my teeth hurt now I just have a little cry and go for a cuddle. I don't need a giraffe anymore.

Best friend

My best friend is my friend Finlo. He was born three weeks after me. His Mummy is called Alice and my Mummy and her are really good friends. Finlo comes to play sometimes and I try to share my toys and I am getting good at it Mummy says. I like to climb on Finlo though and Mummy tells me off. I don't know why, Finlo doesn't mind. Finlo's Mummy has just had a new baby (I got to hold him like a big boy) and I keep seeing Mummy disappear with bags of my clothes and old toys, so I think she may be taking them to Finlo's little brother. I don't mind though.

Favorite TV programme

Mummy says when I was tiny I loved Baby TV, especially Charlie and the Numbers, which is funny because I am called Charlie. It's not my favourite though. Mummy put In The Night Garden on the other day on her Kindle whilst she was trying to work, and now that's my favourite program. Mummy had a catalogue on the table the other day with lots of toys in and I really want an Iggle Piggle toy of my own for Christmas.


Mummy says I am not good at going to bed. I think she gets very frustrated. But I like being with my Mummy and Daddy and when they put me to bed, they leave me and I want to be with them, so I wake up and cry a lot. Daddy decided to put my mattress by the side of his bed and I am happier here. I know Mummy and Daddy are there then if I wake in the night and I can just climb up on to their bed. I think Mummy said I had been sleeping longer the other day, I'm hoping she isn't going to make Daddy put my mattress back in the cot. I will sleep in my own bed soon, when I am ready. Just not yet.

Me snuggling Blackburn Bear 


I love the bath! I always have a bath with Daddy, he is really good at doing baths. He splashes me and plays fishes with me and lets me lie on his knees. He is really good at washing my hair and never gets shampoo in it. Mummy does though, she is rubbish at bath time and always gets suds in my eyes.

Trips out 

I really really like going to the park as I like to run around the grass. We do have a garden with lots of grass but I much prefer to run around in the park. I also like to go to Dragon's Castle and The Fun Factory which are both soft play centres. Mummy normally leaves these activities to the childminder, I don't know why. But as she is off with me now for 6 weeks, maybe she will take me. I hope so.

My family

I love my big sister, Aalish. She isn't always here, I don't know why. But when she is, she plays with me and cuddles me and she always shares her Mars Mix with me. She bites them first to make sure they are soft and then she gives it to me. She is very thoughtful. I also love my Granny and Grandpa, who I see on the laptop a lot. I don't get to cuddle them very much, which makes me sad, as they live in England and apparently I live in the Isle of Man and Mummy says you have to get a boat or a plane to get to their house. Mummy says we are going to see them next week and stay in something called a Caravan. I don't know what this is, but it sounds fun!
I also have a Great Granny, she is very old and has funny white hair and when I talk to her she always says "I had one of them and the wheel fell off.' I have no idea what she's talking about but I giggle anyway, just to make her feel like I know what she means. I have a Great Grandpa too. He doesn't talk a lot or say much, but he gives massive bear hugs. Mummy says he is poorly now and we may have to get on a plane any minute to go and see him.

What I am looking forward to

Mummy says that next week we are going on holiday, I don't really know what this means, but I know that we are leaving our house and going to stay somewhere else. She says it will be really exciting and I will get to play on the beach and in the swimming pool and she says there is a place that has lots of rides for me to go on. She also said there is a train I can go on, I really like trains. I watch Thomas The Tank Engine quite a bit so I hope it looks like that. I am excited to go on a big boat to get there too, although Mummy said to Daddy I am going to be a nightmare on the boat for 4 hours. 

Bye for now,
Love Charlie x

Friday, July 18, 2014

Love The Little Things, Week 29

Yes!! It's the Summer holidays! 6 whole weeks of freedom and time spent with my boy. I cannot tell you how happy this makes me.

Anyway, here are my #littleloves this week.


All I've read this week is lots of teaching websites! I have been madly planning for September


We watched the World Cup Final last weekend. Hubby and I decided to support Germany - he had them down to win in a competition at work and one of my best friends is German! So we made flags to wave around in support.


Really loving Ella Henderson's Ghost this week.

This is an old one, but I still love it. Kasabian, Goodbye Kiss. 

Another old one, but one of my favourites, it reminds me of a very, very dear friend - David Grey, This Year's Love. 


My face has been very oily lately, so I took the Body Shop's skin consultation and this is what it recommended. So I've been wearing this on my face this week and so far so good! I got the clarifying night treatment, the pore minimiser and the daily cleansing face wash. I have to say the scent was a bit different to what I am used to, but it's grown on me and I really like it now. It's very fresh. 

This week I have also been wearing my new bracelet, from Jo's Arm Candy. I saw Avril's bracelet on her blog and really wanted one! It's so pretty. 


Hmm, nothing of note here! I did make the dish below though, but I can't really say I made it! It's Tesco Southern Fried Chicken steak, Uncle Ben's Mexican rice and a big salad. Not exactly Michelin star, but bloody yummy! 

And finally, it's the Summer hols! wooop!! So excited! Going to spend this next week relaxing and getting the house straight and then we're off to Hoseasons! 

Tuesday, July 15, 2014


After the initial stage of moving onto more than just milk, I tried to ensure that Charlie got a range of flavours and textures whilst weaning. I did start to puree my own fruit and veg for him, but to be honest it was easier to buy little pouches for him, especially once I went back to work. I started by giving him fruit for a pudding or a snack and his first taste of fruit was banana and pear. He preferred the pear but now he absolutely adores banana, which is funny as I can't stand them, or the smell! I've been very strict with his drinks as well and he only ever gets water or milk in the morning and evening. I am not a fan of juice for little ones, I don't think it's necessary and it just encourages them to like or want sweet things. Before I gave him meals that we eat too, I used Annabel Karmel's website for baby recipes. Charlie is a big fan of the lentil puree from there (although i don't puree it now like I did when he was smaller) and the fruity chicken curry. In fact, he loves proper curry now as well.

When I moved him on to more lumpy textures, my fear was (and still is), choking. It's a horrible thought and I really worry about it every time he eats! I was shocked to read that bread is often one of the food items that babies or toddlers choke on, along with meat and apples.

Tesco held their first ever baby food festival last month and although I missed it in store, their online site was just as useful. They teamed up with Annabel Karmel and you can find her top weaning tips on the website as well as lots of lovely recipes for the various weaning stages. I tried Charlie with the stage 3 mini meatballs and he loved it! I'm going to make him the pea and Parmesan risotto next, which I think I will make for the whole family as it looks and sounds yummy too! There's also a video on there, where experts talk about what foods to avoid whilst weaning  and also distinguishes between gagging and choking, which I found really helpful. The Tesco Baby Food festival website is packed full of really helpful tips on various topics all connected to weaning and feeding your baby/toddler. There's expert advice and lots of really great recipes. I found that the recipes elsewhere on the internet were all a bit limited. But Annabel Karmel offers really good alternatives which are lower in salt and packed full of flavour.

Before the food festival, Tesco conducted a survey of 1200 parents all about weaning and some of the statistics are shown below:

77% of parents give water as a drink
46% give bananas as a first fruit and 40% carrots as a first food
34% of parents opt for a mixed weaning of baby led and traditional weaning

It was really interesting to see how other parents go about weaning, as often I think new parents worry if they are doing it right. Again, the Tesco Food Festival site has loads of information about this and includes a top list of healthy food for toddlers.

I was asked if Charlie would like to receive a few bits to help him on his weaning journey and of course I whole heartedly said yes. Charlie received a plate, a set of cutlery, a drinking cup, a bib with a tray to catch any food that gets dropped and of course some baby wipes to clear up the mess afterwards! We have really struggled to get liquid into Charlie, besides milk, as he couldn't get the hang of the cups, but this one has been his favourite and he now drinks from it properly and even points to it when he wants a drink. The plate and cutlery are being well used, although he has decided lately to use his fingers to eat - even when eating cottage pie! I think the bib is a great idea too - especially for clean freaks like me! I hate mess and it makes me feel sick picking up cold mushy food off the floor. This bib catches a lot of food, altnough Charlie still likes to throw some it on the floor! Yuck!

You can find the website here.

*Tesco sent me the feeding items for free, but the thoughts and opinions in this post are all my own.

Friday, July 11, 2014

Love The Little Things, Week 28

I've not been around much, in case you hadn't noticed! Normally at the end of term you start to wind down, but work has been busier than ever with new schemes of work to write for September and end of year assessments to get done. Plus, we've had a lot going on with the step-daughter's mother which has taken up a lot of our time. Normal service to resume soon, but for now I am back with Butwhymummywhy's Love The Little Things.


With being so busy, I haven't had chance to pick up a book lately. However, I've had a few sneaky peeks at blogs on my lunch and managed to pick up my kindle when I've got in bed for a bit. These are the blogs I've been reading this week:

Life As A Widower  - This is a blog written by Ben who was widowed in 2012. Ben writes about his life with his son so touchingly and poignantly. I had drafted a post the other week about how crap things were at the minute and after reading his blog, I deleted it. I realised that, through all the shit we have going on, I need to be thankful and grateful for what I have.

School Gate Style - I love Avril's blog! She always knows how to put an outfit together and she always looks stylish. I am currently coveting her boyfriend jeans which she managed to pick up for £7!

The Adventures of  a Potty Mouthed Mummy - She wrote a very honest post about Brit Mums, that, if I had gone, I would have probably felt too. I'm just not sure things like that are for me now. I used to really want to go but after seeing the instagram pictures and the blog posts that came from Brit Mums, I'm just not sure I am that sort of blogger.


Of course, the World Cup! I've really enjoyed it actually and got into it this year. So has Charlie, judging by this picture! However, it's costing us a fortune, as hubby insists we have to have a 'beer' if we are watching the football and it's a bit annoying that the matches don't start until 9pm!


I keep hearing Radio One play this and it's grown on me.

The Vamps, Somebody To You

Rixton, Me and My Broken Heart 

Ed Sheeran, Sing 


Still having a Summer work wardrobe debacle. As I said, I ordered a load of things and in the end I kept one item - a black maxi jersey skirt. Boring, I know. But it has actually served me well for work. This is the link to the skirt as I can't get a large enough picture to put here. 

I also ordered this dress from Joe Browns and I love it. It's not all that flattering, but I like the fit and I like it can be worn over leggings or it's long enough to go bare legged. 

I've also gone and ordered a few pairs of boyfriend jeans as I seem to be obsessed with them - I'll let you see them when they arrive!


I made paella - I am obsessed with this too. I just love it soo much. It's addictive! I blogged the recipe here, but stupidly forgot the pictures, so here are some in the preparation stage. 

And lastly, one more week to go!! I cannot wait for the Summer holidays. I really need a rest and the house also needs seeing to, things like cleaning windows etc often get neglected when it's busy at work. I am also looking forward to taking Charlie on his first proper holiday! We're only off to Hoseasons, see here, but it will be great fun. I also can't wait just to spend some time with hubby and Charlie. I miss my boy terribly when I am at work and 6 whole weeks will be just fab! And I had to share this photo: 

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Sleep deprived

So, I'm going to talk about sleep. Again. I don't think I have ever talked about sleep, or lack of, more in my life than I have before I had a baby. Sleep was something that just happened every day. You went to bed, you fell asleep and so on.

Now, it's all I seem to think or talk about, especially to the hubby. I can't quite put my finger on it, but somewhere along the way, Charlie slipped back into a sleep regression, and now, five months down the line, it hasn't got any better. In fact, it seems to have got worse.

Each night goes something like this - dinner, play time, bath time and then back downstairs for some milk. Sometimes, he will drop off whilst having this feed, but if I try to take him upstairs, as soon as his head hits the mattress he wakes up and screams until I pick him up. Sometimes he won't fall asleep and so I take him upstairs, feed him on his chair and wait for him to fall asleep - he might or he might not. If he does, as soon as I place him in his cot, he wakes up. If he won't go to sleep then I take him to our room and lie on our bed with him and he falls asleep, but then, and you've probably guessed it right, as soon as I move to place him in his cot, he wakes up! The only way he will sleep through the night (and by sleep through, I mean until about 4am), is if we give in and put him in our bed. Now I know the critics will be saying, well I never should have had him in our bed to begin with. Perhaps, but I wouldn't have done it differently and I don't regret it.

My point with this post though, is that, I have been given tons of information about how to get Charlie to sleep. And do you know what? None of it worked. I've tried: cry it out - failed (he screams), controlled crying (worked initially when he was 6 months old now he screams), Sitting by his bed - failed (he screams). What's left?! I've read some stuff about sleep association and trying to replace feeding with something else, i.e. sucking their thumb, but it all sounds a bit pants. I've read about how to have a nightlight, give him a pillow, take the side of the cot off (he's far too young for that in my opinion), play soft music, blah blah - none of it works!!
I've been on the brink of despair with him, wondering why he does not even seem tired.  I have no time for anything now in the evening as he can still be awake at 11pm.

The problem, as far as I can see, is that NO ONE can tell you how to get your own baby to sleep. Each baby is different. They can only tell you what did work for them or what didn't. I'm tired of health visitors telling me to let him cry it out or use controlled crying. Even though I did my own version of controlled crying (I waited 4 mins before going back in each time, until he was asleep, I was never going to wait 15), why would any person, leave their child to cry and not go to them when their only desire is to have their mummy or daddy hold them? I just can't do it.  There's so much advice out though, it's hard to know what to do for the best.

So, I've decided just to let it be and not stress. We've moved a single mattress into our room for now so that I can lie down with him whilst he goes to sleep. Hopefully this will help.  I am going to try and get him to drop off without the boob you see, as I'd like him to be off that by the time he is 2 anyway. Although I won't if he isn't ready. But besides that, I'm just going to let it be. I've been so concerned with bedtime and what time he gets to sleep. But most babies at some point, will decide to go to sleep and sleep through, or so I've been told.  I just wish Charlie could do it a bit quicker. I want my evenings back, as much as I adore and love my little boy, I need some down time, time to recharge and prepare to start it all again the next day. But it will come, eventually. I never for one minute thought when I was pregnant that I would have a perfect sleeping baby (he is perfect of course, but not with sleep!), and it's not forever, there will come a time, my gorgeous little man will not need me or his Daddy the way he does now.