What does family time mean to you? For each one of us, we probably have a variation of what we love to do with our own families but spending quality time together is the foundation of them. We all want to be classed as great family members right? Well, our social media outlets say otherwise and as you scroll through facebook and instagram you can see selfies taking over the internet. I am to pause the selfie obsession for a moment…
I am teaming up with Centre Parcs in their new campaign to change the perspective of selfies and challenge people to shy away from that automatic selfie shot. This is taking on a new perspective of the world around us. What have you been missing right in front of you that is passing you by while you are looking up at that seflie stick in the air? Or posing for the best lighting on your face in the middle of the street? (ok, we all love a good selfie but indulge me).
Centre Parcs has an amazing competition running for the next three weeks to WIN £300 worth of family prizes including cinema tickets, restaurant vouchers, games and more prizes for your family to have a great time together. It’s about bring us out of our new online bubble and back into reality in the lives around us not just ourselves. I know I am more guilty of this than most people and it was my new year’s resolution and still is to be more aware of how much I am not observing around me.
How To Enter…
If you want to win a family bundle worth £300, all you need to do is post of photo of your family fun time onto our Facebook page or on twitter using #CPfamilytime. Terms and conditions apply*
1.Hold smartphone in selfie position
2.Turn camera on
3.Turn phone 180˚ away from you
4.Take photo of the scene around you
5.Upload to Facebook or twitter using #Cpfamilytime
I daresay we will get to see some amazing sky views and landscape photos soon or feet and ground shots too. I can’t wait. Normally after nap-time my little girl and I sit down and draw or color together. We love a good selfie together to document our one on one time while brother is at school but today we wanted to share with all of you what we have been getting up to, instead. Here is our example of a non-selfie #CPfamilytime photo. Why not turn your phone around and see what’s on the other side? Enter today!
Centre Parcs is all about family fun. This is just the beginning of three competitions they will be hosting for all of you. So keep an eye out here or on social media for the next one. You wouldn’t want to miss it because you were taking a selfie right?
We as a family are always traveling and going on family days out with our two toddlers in tow. This means there are numerous occasions, each week, where we need a reliable pushchair to help tow not only our children but all our necessities too. Having had two babies back to back and a period that they both were needing one in the middle, I have road tested my fair share of pushchairs. The iCandy Raspberry has came into our lives at a perfect time where B is now too big to be pushed around but MM still needs one that she can take naps in if we are out all day. Gone are our days of the double stroller thankfully.
I have heard about iCandy numerous times from other mothers in play groups and seen them out on the town strolling cute little babies, happily. They are notorious for their uber cool, vibrant seat/hood colors (which you get free with pushchair) and a quality brand you can trust. They back all their pushchairs with a guarantee. iCandy really do have a parent’s mind set when designing their pushchairs as I think they have really thought of everything when creating the Raspberry so let’s dive into the goodies of it.
At two years old some pushchair seats are far too small already for MM or the hood doesn’t go high enough and hits her head as she is tall for her age. My initial thought on the iCandy Raspberry after the cooing over the stunning sunflower yellow color and black chassis was that it would last us for awhile still. The harness isn’t at the highest level for her yet and she has plenty of leg room way before she is dragging her feet. That plush yellow seat liner is the softest, most comfortable feeling seat liner I have ever seen, hands down. I even wanted to lay on it when I took it out of the box. The silky hood easily glides open and shut to block out that light for a good snooze or keep the rays off your little one. The matching harness pads are just as cozy as the seat liner. The padding is amazing and is no wonder MM always falls asleep in this pushchair on days out. I think the sunflower and solid black chassis are so stylish together.
Three position reclining: I think this is a must with little ones as sometimes they are reluctant to go to sleep and want to watch the world go by for awhile before drifting off. Straight recline is great for fun strolls to the park and stopping for a quick snack break. Laying all the way down is definitely a must for little nappers to catch some zzz’s. MM sleeps beautifully in this pushchair. I only wish I had it when we stayed in the states for two months as we were out almost every day.
Free Standing when folded: I love this feature I was so sick of our old stroller lying on the hallway floor, always in the way. It always annoyed me that none of our strollers stood up. It makes perfect sense for space, accessibility and to keep the stroller from getting battered too.
Large basket & storage pod:The basket is perfect to fit my large diaper bag in with no problem Holds up to 5kg of all your necessities. I absolutely love the idea of a secret storage pod. Your rain cover comes nicely folded inside but also you could store your keys, phone or purse in here at the park or on days out and it will be safe, dry, and hidden. I love it. It’s a fantastic idea.
Car seat compatible: With car seat adaptors the Raspberry can be used with Maxi Cosi Cabriofix, Pebble and Pebble plus car seats, as well as BeSafe IziGo car seats. I loved when I first had B and realized I could get adaptors and put the car seat right onto my stroller. Who wants to wake a sleeping baby?
Independent front and rear suspension: A bit technical but just means a smooth ride through the city for your baby while he/she snoozes or enjoys their day. I really could feel the difference in the wheels when I pushed this stroller compared to others I have had in the past. It glides so smoothly down the foot path, I promise you.
Five point padded harness: The Raspberry has matching pads for the harness and they are well cushioned for your baby’s comfort and safety too. The five point harness keeps your baby secure. I liked how easy it is to undo the harness as I have weak wrists and have struggled with other latches in the past too.
Other Information: Suitable from birth to 25kg. Pushchair weighs 6.6kg For me, I love that you can have one pushchair from birth right through (unless you are stroller happy like we are). However, the weight for me was the only thing I was a little disappointed in. For a urban city pushchair I was hoping it would be extremely light, it feels alot heavier to me than 6.6kg. I have to give it a good heave when I lift it into my SUV as it’s high off the ground, even though it does class itself as a light weight pushchair. Maybe I just need to get back to the kettlebell workouts.
PARENT/REAR FACING SEAT:
I think MM is a curious soul but there are times when she isn’t well, or is having an off day that she prefers to face me. I let her decide and it’s nice to have a chat with her as we stroll. I have always loved the option to turn the seat either way. It’s handy having her parent/rear facing when I am splitting a snack with her and her brother or giving her something to drink on the go. I prefer to have her parent/rear facing when I recline her for her naps. It keeps her focus on sleeping rather than watching the intriguing people around her.
As much as she loves her momma and her snacks she is a nosy little thing and she usually chooses to face forward so she can see the world go by. She can grab at things as we go through the shops, and wave at people on the train, or watch her brother ride his bike up ahead. She likes to know what’s going on around her too. I have her forward facing when we go to places like the zoo and circus.
We usually use our iCandy Raspberry for our daily trips to the park or the shop to grab bread or milk. We stroll through the mall while B is in school now, and it’s just the two of us. I love our one on one time together and our girlie outings in our iCandy. MM is in love with her iCandy Raspberry too. Often times she will pull the hood half way and ask me to recline her in it while we walk to the park. I peak in to her to see what she is doing and catch her staring up at the clouds and watching them float overhead. I think she goes to her little happy place when she does this. She is just as pensive as she is nosy which is a funny combination. She always seems deep in thought as we walk.
Sleeping is a must for us while we are out. If we don’t have a comfortable or suitable pushchair to aid us into clouds of fluff we have a problem. Both my kids are sleepers and if they don’t get their daily naps it’s a tough afternoon for all of us but having said that I never wanted it to keep us locked down at home. From the time they were born I always tried to get them used to sleeping in various pushchairs, play pens, car seats and friend’s houses. For the most part we have been good so far. I have noticed though MM goes to sleep far faster in our iCandy than she ever did our most recent pushchair. I think it’s a combination of the extra cushioning the iCandy has in the seat liner and the deeper seat so when she is laid back it forms like a bucket seat for her which is more comfortable than a completely flat seat. It contours with her body and in all that cozy cushion who wouldn’t fall fast asleep?
So how do I rate the iCandy Raspberry… 0 (no feelings) to 10 (outstanding)… I give it an 8.5. That’s only because I did struggle a little bit getting used to opening and closing it. I am not going to lie, it took me a few handfuls of tries just to figure it out then get used to it. Now it’s easy peasy. Then a little mark down for being heavier than expected and struggling to lift it into my car which is high off the ground. Although than that I can’t fault it and I may have to give a bonus point for being sold in the most gorgeous yellow I have ever seen.
So how do the experts rate iCandy Raspberry…check them out here.
So how does MM rate the iCandy Raspberry… “I like my yellow seat.” was all that she would give me than begged to go for a walk to the park in it. Off we go…
Our iCandy Raspberry family fun adventures in the park
*We were sent this pushchair for the purpose of this review, however all photos and opinions are our own. We give only our honest and trusted opinions on our reviews and hope you like the products/brands we love to share.
I wouldn’t say I am a professional decorator by any means but I have painted my fair share of walls, doors, furniture and exteriors of houses too. I get it from my mother, she was constantly painting something, diy projects around the house my entire life and went on to marry my Dad who built homes for a living. I guess it runs in my blood. There isn’t a year that goes by where I don’t paint a room a different color or add a feature wall or change a feature wall color. I have had plenty of mistakes, mishaps and down right uglies, along the way.
Like with anything in life, you pick up tricks and tips as you go. There are many don’ts and do’s of painting that I now stick to every time. I thought I would share of my knowledge and experiences with you in case you were thinking of painting soon. Trust me, there is more to painting than just these ten tips so feel free to peak at my pinterest board below for more advice and deeper meanings to color palettes if that’s what you are looking for.
Rule No. 1: Don’t think you can free hand paint. Use the proper equipment such as drop clothes, edging tape, and paint trays, no matter how sturdy your hand is, you don’t want to have to clean up or fix any accidents. The better you are prepared, even if it does take a little prep time, the better the out come will be. I have free hand painted numerous times and the touching up is just more work and time than it’s worth.
Rule No. 2: Buy tester pots of paint. They sell mini pots of the colors you might be interested in using, buy a few shades of the color you like and actually paint them on the wall in little patches to see their true color. Every color looks different in every house, in every light, and in every room.
Rule No. 3: Don’t buy cheap paint it won’t last and won’t be as durable. I have made this mistake before and with small children I wanted a paint I could trust. There are sales on paint all the time, shop around for the best price. I am a huge fan of Farrow and Ball paint from Kent Blaxill. Buy more than you need and keep the receipt. You can always return an unopened can but if you don’t, you might find you go back for more and they are sold out of the color or it has been taken off the shelves. Trust me, it’s happened to me before.
Rule No. 4: Go bold and timeless, not stylish and trendy. Sometimes we can get wrapped up into what looks good now but not think of how long we want this look to last. Wallpapers go in and out of style as do paint color palettes. You can see on pinterest that a variety of shades of the same color are timeless and stay popular like these grey and yellow mood boards, I have here. They are variations of the same color but if you branch into different coordinating colors that can be more tricky. This years hunter green and hot pink trend might not be so hot next year or easy on the eyes after awhile.
Rule No. 5: Think in terms of room size and light. If it’s a smaller room you want lighter colors to open the space. If there is not a lot of natural light be careful to go pure white it can look cold and dingy. I like to have a painted feature wall if I go bold, like MM’s bedroom, it’s all cream except one wall is fuscia. This also makes it easier when I want to change the theme it’s one feature wall to paint not four. Bold vibrant colors can make the room appear smaller too. Be careful not to close yourself in and take space away with your color choices.
Rule No. 6: Use good paint brushes. I use cheap rollers as they don’t seem to be a difference when painting but a good paint brush for me is a must. I have used the same paint brush for the last eight years for all my painting in both my houses. Invest in one good one which isn’t that expensive and you have it forever. You don’t want brush hairs left behind as I have seen on so many walls, they are dried right into the paint. Or handles that crack and seep paint down your arm. Not a pretty look.
Rule No. 7: Paint all your edges, around light sockets, windowsills, door frames, wall edges first, about two inches wide. You don’t want your roller hitting the ceiling because you need to get closer. Make sure it’s solid and no bleeding or thin parts before you roll the wall. You really don’t want to do the edging twice.
Rule No. 8: Make sure you use a paint tray properly and roll off excess paint off your roller. I have seen my own husband (sshh don’t tell him) barely roll excess paint off and stick it on the wall. The first four or five rolls up and down the wall had him splattered with paint flying off his roller. Sometimes you don’t even notice it but little flicks of paint are going everywhere. If you are on carpet be sure to be extra cautious and use your drop cloths. Although be sure to put enough paint on that it fully covers the wall, you want it to go on even. You don’t want to skimp on paint the first time around, it could be a one coat job.
Rule No. 9: Let it dry before applying a second coat or freaking out about the color. I have thought my wall needed a second coat but after letting it dry it looked fine and saved me buying more paint. Don’t freak out when you put the paint on the wall and it’s still wet. Paint dries a different color than when it’s wet. My master bedroom left me in tears after painting it twice, a different color, as I was quick to rush out and paint over it before I let it dry and see it in natural day light the next day. Most people paint during the day and when the job is finished its night fall and it always looks more intense at night, at first, if you aren’t used to it.
Rule No. 10: If you get it wrong, you can always paint or wallpaper over it. That’s the beauty of paint and wallpaper you can forever keep changing it, if you please.
Have you had any paint catastrophes? I would love to hear your paint stores or wall paper encounters. Leave a comment below or tweet me.
Check out my “Painting 101” board full of more tips, and tricks on painting.