Tuesday, 22 September 2015

Our Favourite Children's Books

One of my favourite activities is settling down with a book. Naturally when I had Michael, he had a small collection of books before he was even born. Now he is 2, he loves his books and regularly comes up to me with a book in hand wanting to read. It is a great indoor activity when the weather is bad. Here are some of our favourite books and books every toddler will enjoy.

1. That's Not My... Book series. Michael really loves these sensory books. There is a vast range of options from puppy, fairy, train and even Santa which I have bought Michael for December this year. Bright pictures and patches of different textures make babies and toddlers love touching and exploring the books. Currently there are loads on sale on EBay for only £2.80.

2. Dear Zoo by Rod Campbell. Most of us know this book! I have read it now to Michael 100s of times and it is his favourite by far. Toddlers love lifting the flaps to see the animals the zoo have sent and doing all the different animal sounds. We will soon have to buy a new couple because our one is truly battered!

3. Each Peach Pear Plum by Janet and Allan Ahlberg. When I was a little girl I have great memories of reading it, so when I came across it on EBay for £2.50 I had to buy it for Michael. Before he used to just look at the pictures but now can find most of the fairy tale characters on the pages and it is fastly becoming a book he adores.

4.The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle. Although this children's book is a classic when I was a girl I never actually liked it. Nevertheless when someone bought this as a present I started to read it to Michael. Colourful and simple Michael likes following the caterpillar's food consumption and finding the butterfly at the end. That and he just likes putting his fingers in the holes.

5. The Highway Rat by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler. When most think of these two authors, they think of the classic The Gruffalo, a book we do indeed have in our collection. However myself and Michael prefer the Highway Rat. It's colourful, a great story and if i don't say so myself, I do a great Highway Rat voice!

While we have bought many books, mainly from charity stores and EBay, Michael also has a children's library card.  100s of books to borrow and I enjoy reading some of my favourite children's classics as well as discovering some new finds. Our local library also holds a group story play time which is a great excuse to pop along to the library. 

What book is your child's favourite? Any to recommend?


Saturday, 12 September 2015

Getting Ready for Winter - Clothing

It is now September and the new school year for me signals the start of the colder weather. Sure enough the temperature is falling and the nights drawing in. I actually love autumn and winter! Cosy nights in watching Downton Abbey and Strictly. Lovely! It is at this time of year I start to prepare for the winter by heading to the stores and buying Michael what he needs for the upcoming months. Luckily he has a lot of long sleeved tops and decent trousers that fit him from last year so I did not really have to buy any more of them.

1. Jumpers I am in love with wool jumpers at the moment for Michael. So thick and warm and really well made. I like plain and traditional designs for Michael and think they look really smart. 

The blue jumper was £13 from Next and the green one only £7 from Asda. He also wore one on his birthday(see post) that was from H&M. They have a really good range of winter clothing this year.

2. Dressing Gown and slippers.  Must haves when getting up on cold mornings! Love soft dressing gowns, I have 3! The one Michael has was only £5 from Mothercare. His slippers were from the Disney Store and were a birthday present from my mum. 

3. Vests! These really don't have to be anything special. I got Michael some plain white vests in a pack of 3 for only £1.70 in Primark. They are only to wear under his shirts on the days it is bitterly cold.

4. Winter coat I actually bought Michael's winter coat last year in the sales. It was £25 reduced to £9. Winter coats can be expensive but Asda sell reasonably priced coats that are quite nice. Michael's coat is from Next and is fleece lined so should keep him nice and toasty. 

5. Gloves and hat. Again bought these just last week from Primark because you really do not need to pay a lot of gloves and a hat in my view. Just plain black will do. Although I am not sure Michael will wear his hat, he took off his summer cap all the time. If anyone has any tips for encouraging their child to keep on their hat let me know!

6. Wellies. It rains a lot! Must have if you are out a lot whatever the weather like we are. Got plain blue ones from Asda for just £5. They will do nicely. Even in the buggy with the raincover Michael needs waterproof shoes. Yet to find a buggy raincover that covers his bottom of the legs and feet! 

There are still some things I do need to buy Michael. He has long sleeved pjs but I will probably buy him some thicker ones as well. It gets really cold at our place. 

Also have to share, how cute is Michael's Halloween costume?! 

I know it's early since Halloween is a while away. However Home Bargains have some of their range in and this vampire costume was only £4.99 Bargain! so thought I would buy it and put it away for him. I love Halloween so of course Michael is dressed up every year! 

Now Michael is all set for Winter clothing wise I can get my winter stuff out and have a sort out. Every year I always seem to need more jumpers! We also dig out the extra blankets and hot water bottles later down the year. Am also in love with more autumn based candles. 

Let me know what you do to prepare for Winter.


Friday, 11 September 2015

2nd Birthday

So yesterday was a really exciting day, Michael my darling boy turned 2 yesterday.

It was a really lovely day. We woke up early and Michael opened all his cards and a special t-shirt to wear before we then headed out to the V&A museum and a walk around London. 

By 3pm we were back home and my mum came over to watch Michael open most of his presents. He got so much! He is a very lucky boy! Michael got clothes, books and lots of toys. His favourite toys had to be his Buzz Lightyear doll and some cars. 

My younger sister also surprised us by coming to visit bringing along my beautiful niece Amelia. Michael was thankfully very sweet to his baby cousin giving her lots of cuddles and kisses.

Really can't believe Michael is 2 already, where does the time go?! I am so thrilled he had such a fun day and he loved all his presents and his chocolate birthday cake! 

Now I just have to find a place for all his new toys before he gets more for Christmas!