Posted in Children's Party, Family, irish bloggers, life, parent bloggers, Party, Toddler

Toddler Party-Animal Style

imageThe funny thing about parenting is…that sometimes as a fully fledged adult who is looking after that little toddler, you’ll forget to give out the party invites and time of said party.

Hands up who else has done this?! Can’t just be us surely? To be honest, it potentially turned out to be a good thing, as Paige really just prefers hanging around with a small number of toddlers/babies at a time. She likes to take stock of those around her and takes her time. My little mistake of forgetting the invites for the kids at nursery did mean she had a load of food and chocolate to eat-as you’ll see from the pictures.

I must admit, I can’t believe I created a pretty table like this. And it was super easy and quite cheap.

I picked the plates,bowls and napkins up in the euro store. And the table cloth and cups where from mr.price. So nice and cheap and did the job perfect. The other decorations were from Tiger, including the grass which suited the theme perfectly and meant easy grabbing for kids!

I made chocolate covered grapes, chocolate rice krispie buns, jelly (with fish decorations) and a lions head out of carrots and hummus. I also bought animal themed marshmallows and dipped one side in chocolate, and they were a hit with adults and children. Paige certainly liked munching on the last few in the bowl and ran away with said bowl.

We picked the cake up from Super Valu on the morning of the party as it’s what Paige picked out! She was super happy and it was super dee duper tasty and only cost €8! They even wrote her name on it and her age.

Dotted around the house, I had a load of balloons filled using a helium tank we purchased. Such a hit with every child. The goodie boxes made up of loads of little bits and pieces were such a since little treat, and Paige is still munching through the leftovers. We bought the boxes-animal themed obviously- on eBay and filled them using animal tattoos and stickers, with Kinder chocolates, Easter themed chocos and bubbles!

Seeing as this was the first party I’ve put together myself, I can’t wait for the next one. (I think I did an okay job!)

Moral of the story though, don’t forget to send out the invites 😁 and always shop around. You don’t need a big, fancy decorated cake. All they want to do is blow out the candles.

If you’d like more info on anything I created/used just leave a note in the comments and I’ll respond. As she gets older, I plan on expanding on the theme a bit more and potentially stock piling decorations to save money in the long run.

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Posted in Family, irish bloggers, life, parent bloggers, Toddler

Toddler turns 2

The funny thing about parenting is that….we will always be busy, but sometimes we just need to switch off from the online world and enjoy each other.

We’ve been doing that a lot lately. House is on track. Toddler is now 2, and officially a toddler….none of this in between age stuff where she’s a wobbler. She’s even moved rooms in nursery.

We’ve been trying to get out and about and enjoy the outdoors, taking walks, going to festivals and making the move to life without the pram in tow. It works for some occasions, but not all.

I’ve been busy with work, and organising a toddler birthday that most other things have taken a back seat in our lives. We want to see Paige grow up, we want to encourage her to use her vocabulary, although, at the minute, it’s quite difficult as the terrible two’s are well and truly under way. The tantrums, the slapping, the biting. All of it. And it’s difficult when you live with family. As everyone has an opinion. Everyone thinks it’s funny but then it’s gets to a point when it’s not funny anymore. And then they chime in with ‘that’s bold’ or ‘say something to her’. I can completely and whole-heartedly understand why the child is getting frustrated. Sometimes all a toddler wants to do is relax, like so many of us. She has spent the whole day at nursery-longer than most people’s working day, from 7:30am until after 5pm. She’s all played out. Just let her be. I don’t like to talk to people after a long day, and neither do a lot of adults. So why should a 2 year old who can’t put everything she wants to say into one big long sentence.

I also had a quick read of an opening line on an article about ‘sharing’ and how can children be expected to share when another child wants a toy/book that said child is playing with. We as adults, don’t hand over our phones when someone says can I look at ‘blah blah blah’. And why shouldn’t the child who’s playing with said toy/book/spoon just hand something over because another child wants it. Aren’t we giving in to that child a little too easily and shouldn’t we be teaching them to wait patiently(as well as teaching our children to share, once they’ve finished playing with said object and let their little imaginations run wild). This was something that actually made me think, as I’m so fed up with people telling my child to share when she’s in the middle of playing with something. Why should she? Why should she just give up her toy because someone else wants it? As a mother, I am also there to protect her. To tell her it’s okay, finish playing with the toy as there are a dozen other things for the other kids to play with. Don’t get me wrong, she tries to take other kids toys too, and I swiftly step in and tell her gently that isn’t how it’s done and I hand her something else. (I’m not saying she’s an angel because she isn’t!).

I know once we move out, into our own space again, things will be easier! We will be able to parent a little more structured in a way. The toddler will love her new bedroom. She will love having the freedom to have her own play area. She will love sharing her new room and toys with whoever chooses to visit. She will love all of this, as she knows that it’s all hers. Mummy and daddy will love their own space too. Our own kitchen. Bathroom. Garden. And yes, we will sharing (if people want to visit, but they can bring whatever they want as we’ll be flat broke-so champers, wine, food are all welcome! Oh and the necessities, like chairs and stuff too!)

Posted in Family, irish bloggers, life, parent bloggers, Toddler

Weekend

The funny thing about parenting is…. we all love the weekends! That is of course, if you have the weekend off as not all parents do. My hubby has to work the odd weekend-always has! But we all love our days off – even if the kids are so set in a routine that sometimes they drive us crazy. (I’m not going to lie!)

Paige has a habit of not eating at the weekend unless it’s just yogurts, chocolate, crisps and juice. She likes to graze. She likes to pick at things. If kids are around, she’ll wolf down her food.

But the weekend for us is family time. We get out and about, and yes, most of that time is spent shopping, going for a coffee and maybe going for the odd dinner out. The odd dinner out, used to be every weekend we’d eat out in London in the fabulous restaurants that were all 5 minutes from the house. Since we moved home, we’ve been saving so cut down on the non-necessities.

This weekend however, mummy and daddy are going away for the night on Sunday. It will be the second time we’ve left her alone. We went to Monart Spa in Wexford when she was 5 months old for the night as it was where we got engaged, many years previously. Thinking about it now, it was easier to leave her with the grandparents back then, compared to now. Obviously nearing two means she is used to her surroundings, she’s used to having us with her and putting her to sleep. She is used to sleeping in our bed – her cot-bed has become redundant.

Now it’s time for some mummy and daddy time. I am entering my final year in my twenties. We have also just had an offer accepted on a house. We are both pretty shattered. We need a night away to relax and to enjoy each others company and as selfish as that seems, sometimes parents need to have that alone time and it’s fine. I do feel bad that we’ll be leaving early on Sunday, but she’ll be spending quality time with her grandparents who are just returning from holiday.

It’s time for us to put on our fancy clothes that we can’t wear around little grubby hands and to enjoy the surroundings of a hotel. Originally we were toying with the idea of taking Paige away for a couple of nights, but sometimes, as adults, you just need a break. You need that full night’s sleep. You need to eat a meal without it ending up all over you. And that’s OKAY!

I think I was and still am quite apprehensive about leaving her, as when she wakes in the night, she cries for mummy and daddy. Even if my parents went in to her, it was mummy and daddy she wanted. So that’s part of the reason we booked a hotel in Dublin. It won’t take us long to get to her if all hell breaks lose.

Looking back on that first night away as a couple and leaving Paige for the first time, it was easier than it is now. Yes, she was still small, but she was still small enough to fall asleep with the aid of a bottle. That all stopped as soon as she hit 12 months. But we just have to suck it up. My parents reared 3 kids and we’re all still around. They’ll be well able to handle my ‘angel’ (good thing they really know what she’s like!).

So this weekend, we as parents shall be enjoying family time for one day, and then getting dressed up, like little miss Paige above, and we shall be taking one night off duty. It won’t scar her for life. It will make her miss us even more! As she keeps telling us ‘I’m not a baby’.

And I shall celebrate turning 29 with a good night’s sleep, a Jacuzzi bath as well as a sauna in the room. All with a glass of bubbly in hand! And bonus, I’ve a day off work on Monday.

So here’s to all you hard-working parents, who work, don’t work – whatever it may be! As being a parent is a full-time, hard, and loving job!

Happy Weekend everyone!

Can you tell I’m excited?

P.S. Crown is from the amazing Fable Heart (Claire is amazing at what she does-so I might have to steal missy’s crown for Monday!) and the amazing dress is from Dunnes Stores (last year’s collection however and it only cost €14!).

Posted in Family, Toddler

Nights out – sorry WHAT?!

The funny thing about parenting is…

That since we moved home from London, we’ve actually had less nights out than over in the big smoke! Believe it or not, even with grandparents around, I think we’ve gone out 3 times together alone in about 6 months.

In London, we went out at least once a month, if not twice(sometimes 3).

I blame not having restaurants on our doorstep at the minute and Paige being at that difficult stage where she only wants ‘daddy’. Even if we leave the room for 2 minutes, the screaming starts, so I just don’t have the heart to leave her at the minute. There’s also the issue of routine, and at the minute, our routine is essential otherwise we have a cranky, demon inspired toddler who is not afraid to bite, slap and run amok. Sometimes we are the only ones who can put her to sleep. And then we’re wayyyy too tired to head out – especially after the mammoth screaming and jumping on the bed sessions which just generally result in frustrated parents screaming at each other.

BUT, parents do need some time out together alone. They need some time to sit down and actually enjoy a meal and have a private conversation, without the little toddler screaming beside them.

It still baffles me that we get out less over here, considering we have the grandparents, and aunts and uncles (in London, we only had her uncle). I miss eating nice food out(all-you-can-eat sushi, pizza from a proper Italian, and the chicken from another Italian!), I miss popping for a quick, quiet glass of wine. I miss that even if all we did was talk about the little one and how we should’ve brought her with us.

We have both agreed that we do need to get out for dinner soon, together, alone. But as of yet, we have no concrete plans. I’ll let you know if we do. But don’t count on it.

Posted in Clothes, Family

Every little girl needs…..

The funny thing about parenting is…

That every little girl needs this dress in their life and her parents know it. Imagine the twirling capabilities.

Right now, what with saving for a house and all (not to mention Christmas) I cannot actually afford this for the little madam.

Kids xxmas

Leo Dress/Silver – MiraMira.ie

This is available to buy from the AMAZING Miramira.ie  and the store is based here in Dublin, Ireland! I have yet to take a trip over (and I feel so bad about that) -weekends are always busy at the minute! If I do manage to get over this side of Christmas, I’m sure I’ll be wearing a black sack on Christmas day.

Posted in Clothes, Family

Clothes, clothes and more clothes

The funny thing about parenting is….

No-one tells you that you’ll no longer care what you’re wearing.

All that matters is that your little person is dressed in something clean and that suits their personality.

I may be wrong to allow a 20 month old to dictate what she wears at times, but I figure, she has all week to wear her comfy stuff to nursery so if she wants to wear her big tutu, so be it (even if it’s really heavy and quite wide!).

I want her to express herself in every way she can. I don’t want to force the colour pink on her. I want her to wear every colour that she can, although not all at once.

#ToddlerPaige can pull off black – she rocks a black polo neck.

#ToddlerPaige can pull off blue – she’s blond and blue-eyed.

#ToddlerPaige can pull off pink – but not the hot-pink!

#toddlerPaige rocks leopard print!

We shop in the boys and girls section. I don’t mind if she wears something that is technically classed as a ‘boys!’ Just the other day I picked up a batman t-shirt from H&M that was only £3 and in the boys section. She’s also got a superman hat and loads of leggings that are technically from the boys section of Zara.

Her wardrobe is pretty endless and this year I did have to stop myself purchasing the boys santa outfit from Penney’s/Primark. She had it last year alright, but as she’s getting a little older she needs outfits that do t have feet on them. But there is so much choice out there for children of all ages.

we love to check out mutinykids.com to keep up to date with all things fashion and to help bankrupt us.😂  Oh Baby London also manages to take a chunk of my dosh with all their amazing leopard prints dresses, all in ones and cardis! As well as their signature ‘9 months’ outfits. We’ve also just purchased a crown from Fable Heart which will look amazing at Christmas and my little angel/fairy can dance around the trees! The list is endless…..we can’t forget about PopUpShop though as their swimsuits and onesies are AMAZING!

We love to mix it up everyday! We do fake fur, we do fluff, we do sparkles and we do jumpsuits!

I really enjoy seeing Paige twirling in a new skirt or saying ‘oooh’ to a new pair of jeans….I love how it expresses her personality.

For the month of December we are going to be trying out an outfit-a-day for the advent period as well as a few other things!

If you fancy keeping up to date with us, go over to instagram and check out: @toddling_along – we will be trying to update  the blog as much as possible as well!

Meanwhile, mummy and daddy are walking around in absolute tatters-but we don’t care!

Byebye for now!