Monday, 11 February 2019

Saving some money!

With the new baby on the way I've been looking at the money situation. If I want to buy her all these cute little outfits I'm going to need some spare cash. Over Christmas I realised I really didn't watch a lot of TV anymore and half of the channels went unused completely. I decided I needed to get in touch with Sky and change my plan. I was paying so much money for something I just didn't need and that is money for pizza or shoes which I'm sure you'll agree is far more important.


My tv service is part of a package along with my landline (which is only used by my Mum) and the broadband. I'd originally thought that getting a big bundle deal was the best option but it's just been a bit of a waste. I'm really careful with buying groceries and only buying what I need so I why not be the same when it comes to entertainment? 

I started looking around at comparison sites and found some amazing deals on TV packages that include cheap broadband too.

I needed to consider what it was I actually needed. With Sam and I both online for work all day we need a pretty good speed. If there was more of us using it at once we'd have to look for an even faster speed, so with Mason getting older and much more into technology we know that will be beneficial to us in the long run. Plus I dread how often I'm going to be streaming kids TV shows for the little one over the coming years! I just pray the Baby Shark thing s over by the time the baby is here! Fingers crossed!

I kept an eye out for hidden set-up fees too- that's somewhere where you can really get caught out. A deal can look really appealing and then an extra charge is thrown in afterwards. 

The cheapest packages are for standard broadband, with potential download speeds of 17 Mbps which is suitable for low-medium use by about 3 people.

If speed is what you're looking for then you need fibre. This gives you speeds from 50 Mbps to 362 Mbps. Fibre-optic broadband is now available for 80% of the UK and has come down massively in price over the past few years.

Another thing I had to keep in mind is how long we'll need it for. We're going to be moving this year so it wasn't necessary to tie ourselves into a long contract unless they are ok with us transferring over to another address. Most companies were offering 12 or 18 month contracts but some let you opt for 9 months but the deals won't be as good. Generally longer contracts will save you more money.

We're definitely getting a package with the TV and phone line included but it will only be something basic so I'm not wasting money on channels I don't need but also wasting time scrolling through shows I have no interest in watching. It's time saving too - I'm hoping I'll be much more productive!

After a bit of research I ended up saving almost £20 a month just switching and finding something I would actually use. The next job is to do the same thing with my gas and electric! 


Tuesday, 22 January 2019

Lush Valentine's Day 2019

January really seems to be dragging, doesn't it? It's that month where we're all kind of stuck in limbo, we're all skint, there's old boxes of celebrations with only the snickers left (I eat the Bounty's first, don't hate), and the shops are full of messy shelves with the left overs of the Xmas sales. I actually look forward to February and everything going back to normal. 

Lush is a place that really makes me aware of the seasons, the scents alone just transform you from the pine of a xmas tree to the floral freshness of Springtime.
 Now Christmas is over Lush can make way for the Valentine's range. This is the stuff I really look forward to, I prefer the scents and I know a couple of my favourites come back at this time of year too.

I thought I'd share a couple of bits that caught my eye. Lush have featured some emojis in the past but they've gone a little cheeky for Valentine's. 


The Peachy Bath Bomb (£3.95) is clearly very popular as it was sold out the last two times I've been in store. Luckily I did manage to get myself one in the end. I love peach scents and with the peach juice and grapefruit oil it gives a really fruity scent and a gorgeous colour too. There's a touch of glitter dusted on the top that is just the right amount for my liking - I really dislike anything overly glittery which leaves me having to deep clean the bath ruining the whole point of a relaxing bath in the first place.

lush-aubergine-bath-bomb-2019-valentinesAnother Emoji is the Aubergine or Eggplant if you are from the USA... why do we have different names for things? Zucchini confused me for ages and Cilantro... just why?     Anyway the Aubergine Bath Bomb  (£3.95) has uplifting bergemot oil, fruity ho wood along with tonka absolute. When in the water it shoots green and blue into the bath with a touch of glitter.

One of my ultimate favourites from Lush is the Unicorn Horn Bubble Bar (£4.95) and I'm so pleased it's back for another year. It's a really pretty one too and I'm all about the aesthetic. 

Relaxing lavender oil and ylang ylang oil meets mood-brightening neroli which is known to increase serotonin levels in the brain. It's such a good mix and I feel great after using this in a bath. I tend to cut mine in half so I can get a couple of baths out of it.

The people in Lush are always so friendly and I was telling the girl who served me how much I loved it and she said a great thing to do is stock up on them and crumble them into a jar with a secure lid. That way you can get a load of uses out of it throughout the year without them going stale. Absolutely genius! 


The Love Boat bath bomb is another that I've mentioned before as it was part of the collection last year but is slightly more expensive at £4.50 - damn inflation! (though comparing it to my pic last year it could be slightly bigger...). It's a cute little blue and pink boat that leaves your bath water a pretty shade of lavender with red heart confetti too. The rose oil, Sicilian lemon oil, and sweet orange oil leaves a really gorgeous scent on your skin 


I don't know if it's the weather or the pregnancy, maybe it's a combination of the two but my lips are seriously dry at the moment. I had to pick up one of the Eve's Cherry lip scrubs (£6.50). I've used their Bubblegum lip scrub in the past and these are so good for smoothing dry lips. This has such a gorgeous cherry scent that makes me want a cherry slushie! The caster sugar exfoliates the lips while a mix containing cherry kernel oil and shea butter soften and protect the skin. Sam has described this as 'tasty sand' - so make of that what you will! 


One new product that really stood out to me was the Love Token Bubble Bar (£4.95). It seems like a great gift not only for Valentine's Day but when ever you just want to give someone a little something to say thank you. I wish I'd seen this when I wanted to thank my bestie for the amazing surprise baby shower she threw for me but the flowers I sent were appreciated! 

It looks like a shiny golden coin with a Thank You message on the top. You hold this bubble bar under running water for a generous stream of pine and clove bubbles, I love a bubble bar as you get multiple uses out of them. then popped to one side to use again. Ginger oil, pine needle absolute, and clove bud oil gives a scent of homemade biscuits so it's perfect for a lovely warm relaxing evening.  


I really like the range this year, and I'm planning on making the most of some gorgeous relaxing baths before the baby arrives. 


Tuesday, 15 January 2019

Pregnancy Update - The Second Trimester

So as I'm nearly 35 weeks into my pregnancy now I figured it was time for another baby update. An update is WELL overdue in fact! Better late than never, huh? Since the announcement in August we've come a long way. 

Finding out the Sex of the Baby
We found out we were having a little girl and had a gender reveal with our family to share the news. We weren't going to get too into it but M really wanted to do the 'balloon pop' that he'd seen others do and it seemed like a fun way to announce it. 

We had everyone there make a prediction and the response was quite mixed. I'd always had a feeling it was a girl, not for any real reason other than I've been a lot more tired with this baby than I was with M (but then I didn't have another child to look after back then) and that I craved tomatoes unlike last time when I wanted anything lemony. 

We shared the news with family and there were tears all round. We were thrilled to find out we’re having a little girl! I cannot wait to meet her! She’ll no doubt cost us a fortune as there are so many gorgeous little outfits out there. I’m also very much excited about playing with Sylvanian Families again!

I mentioned before that my Nan knew I was pregnant with M before I did! She called my Mum one evening and randomly asked if I was pregnant. She hadn't seen me in a couple of months and isn't on social media or anything, she had nothing to go by but she just had a feeling. My Mum and I both said no and then about 3 weeks later I found out I actually was. She then said I'd have a boy and was right. Earlier this year she told me I'd have another child 'at some point' but the next born child in the family would be girl. My Nan's prediction was right again. I'm going to get her to guess the lottery numbers next. 

I just can’t believe how quick it’s gone, in less than 5 weeks I’ll be full term and I'm convinced this girl is going to be early. In many ways I’m totally overwhelmed and feeling like I’m not at all ready but in other ways I know I’ve got this. 

M is still very excited, he is very into shopping for her and loves pointing out new clothes. He's heard the heartbeat a few times and is always talking to her and feeling her wriggle around. 

A month of so ago my midwife thought that I was measuring a bit small so I was sent for an extra scan but all was fine. It was nice to see her again and also be 100% sure (or at least more sure, I know you can't be 100% til they're actually here) that she's a girl. We'd been holding off on throwing out M's old clothes just in case they'd got the first gender scan wrong. But the sonographer confirmed we're having a girl. 

How I'm Feeling I'm aching a lot, this baby is getting in all sorts of positions that cut off nerves and I'm needing a lot more baths to relax my muscles. I feel a lot more like I'm carrying around a heavy bag (or honeydew melon- as that's what she is the size of currently.)  I'm probably doing a little too much and need to remember to rest a little more. 

I'm feeling so different this time. Not just physically but mentally I'm in such a good place. I don't want to focus too much on the past, but I know this time I'm not as worried. I'm not thinking 'don't act too pregnant or show you are struggling'. Last time I really felt the pressure to not be different to 'usual Jenn'. I don't have anything to prove now and I know I can do this. I just look at M and I can see that.

The most important thing is that in my mind I’m much stronger. This has been pointed out a few times by several different people now and that’s really reassuring. Sam and I had only been together a year and a half when M was born and although he was my absolute rock through everything he’s a million times better now. He's an incredible Dad and is excellent at keeping me calm. I tried to do too much on my own last time and really suffered as a result. I know I can ask for help and not be seen to be failing. Those ever-so-helpful words from someone telling me ‘I won’t be able to handle it’ are much easier to brush away this time- I bloody can. I’m proud of how far I’ve come emotionally and I think my surroundings have massively helped with that. I know to ignore Mum forums and to take no notice of the people who think their way is the only way. I know to trust my instincts. 

The second trimester is supposed to be the easiest one and it’s been a bit of a mixed bag. My iron levels have been really low so I'm keeping an eye on that and going for some infusions. My heartburn has been horrendous and I'm not getting a lot of sleep - but I guess that means it won't be such a shock when the baby does arrive.

 I originally kept bump pics off social media as there wasn’t a lot to show at first and it's only now really obvious that it's not just a big bowl of pasta in my belly (it is that too!). She’s definitely there but I don’t want to start comparing myself to other mums to be, I know everyone’s different. 

I'm feeling her move around so much more now- much more than I ever did with M, she barely stops. We call her a little mouse as she seems to scurry around in there. She's head down but keeps turning around in circles, she's been back to back so we will just have to hope she is facing the right way when the labour starts.

The Next Stages
I know I need to think about getting the hospital bag together and start reading the Hypnobirthing books or at least get some kind of birthing plan in place! I should go through M’s old baby clothes and see what I still need to buy. I still haven’t had my flu jab, I don't know the difference between a body suit and a sleep suit and I’ve recently decided a nursing pillow might be a good shout this time but I’m not stressing about it all. It will get sorted. I just need her to stay in for a few more weeks now!