Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Tyne's Easter Basket

Easter baskets have been a tradition in our family for a pretty long time....

I don't remember when we started it, but I know that at least since my 6 year old niece Amelie has been on the scene - Easter Baskets have been done every year!

Of course, last Easter Tyne was only 4 days far too little for Easter Baskets ... although he didn't miss out on Easter entirely of course!

But this year, he is old enough to join in with the celebrations and I am so excited for that!

Ok he's too little to do any Easter baking or crafting with me...but he can certainly join in with our traditional Easter Egg Hunt followed by a nice Easter family Lunch....and he can finally have an Easter Basket!

I thought it might be a bit of a challenge putting together an Easter Basket for a little boy - I really wanted to get him a blue bonnet but Jon refused to let me (I'll let it go this year as he's too little to decorate it anyway, but trust year there WILL be a bonnet!).

But I have actually been surprised at how easy it's been to put his basket together, and in fact I have ended up buying too much and am now having to restrain myself from buying more when I`m in shops!

The only thing still left for me is his Easter card but I have already taken care of that as I ordered one one online! I love everything personalised, and Dom & Geri have a fantastic range of personalised cards on offer for all occasions - I ordered my Fathers Day cards while I was there too as that's not too far away now either!

So here's what I bought to fill the basket:

I have always loved Beatrix Potter characters, and since I found out I was having a boy I was so excited about introducing Peter Rabbit to his nursery - so when I saw these super cute Talking Peter Rabbit plush toys advertised on TV recently I had to have one!

I know he'll just love it, and it's so fitting for Easter - I also bought one for my nephew Kier who, at 6 months old, is too young for chocolate gifts!

Of course, there HAS to be an Easter Egg in the basket - and I just loved these baby blue wrapped Bunny Boxed Eggs from Marks & Spencer!

He has way too many of them but Tyne does LOVE stuffed toys, so I had to get an Easter Chick of course!

This cute little Easter Egg tin was a winner as its mainly blue - I've hidden some chocolate bunnies inside!

I just thought this carrot shaped bag was adorable! I've had a hard time finding a boyish bucket for Tyne to use during the Easter Egg hunt, so when I saw this I thought it'd be just perfect!

I've put some Milka chocolate bunnies in here too - he'll have enough chocolate bunnies to last him a lifetime at this rate! 

I just adored this blue windmill when I saw it in Hobbycraft, and thought it'd make a lovely decorative touch to the basket!

I've mentioned before how important it is to me that Tyne gets books for every gift-giving occasion and Easter is no different!

I ordered these Peter Rabbit & Peppa Pig Easter-themed board books from Amazon - I know he'll just love them!

I thought this teeny little blue bunny basket was adorable, and the blue Easter chicks were a must too - both from Hobbycraft.

And yes...once again, I've put chocolate in the basket - mini eggs this time, not bunnies!

So there you have it....Tyne's first Easter Basket!

 Will you be putting together an Easter Basket for your little ones? What are your families Easter traditions?
As always, I'd love to hear from you!

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Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Easter Goodies Guide!

Over recent weeks, I have had the very arduous task of having to try out lots of chocolate and Easter Eggs in the name of research on behalf of you - my lovely readers.


The things I do for you, hey?!!! 

Joking aside - I have basically been up to my eyeballs in chocolate and love every single calorie-laden second of it!!

After my "research" I am pleased to be able to provide you with a Tried & Tested guide to the absolute best of what's on the market Egg-Wise this Easter!


The Harry Hopalot egg from Thorntons is without a doubt the cutest looking white chocolate egg I have seen on the shelves this year.
I wanted to give Tyne a white chocolate egg this year as he seems to prefer it at the moment - I love the cute bunny on the front, and the packaging is also super sweet and will make a lovely addition to any Easter Basket.

The white chocolate was delicious - not overly sweet and sickly as I find white chocolate often can be. I will certainly be buying one of these for Tyne's Easter Basket!

OMG - this egg is, quite possibly, the most decadent and divine easter egg I have EVER tried.

Not only is a very chunky, luxurious dark chocolate egg - but it has actual crumbly brownie biscuit pieces in it and delicious crisp walnuts.

It is not for the faint hearted - a REAL chocolate indulgence - but absolutely to die for, one to really savour every last mouthful of.

Elizabeth Shaw

If you're looking for something a bit different for someone special, this is an excellent choice.

The chocolate egg itself is lovely, but the chocolate flutes are what really make it stand out - the orange flutes are delicious, no complaints there at all - but the amaretto flutes are the real selling point for me! 

Such a lovely little treat for the grown ups this Easter!


A relative of mine is a HUGE lover of Guylian's chocolate sea shells so I always make sure I buy them for him every Easter - the chocolate sea shells are a lovely gift on their own of course, but the presentation of Guylian's Easter Eggs which include a box of the sea shells is just lovely and really makes it worth spending that little bit extra.


Oh my goodness - where to start with Lindt?!

You know you can always rely on Lindt to provide melt in the mouth, creamy delicious milk chocolate but it's more than the chocolate itself that impresses me where Lindt are concerned - it's the presentation and the ideas they come up with.

The Gold Bunny has become so associated with Easter and rightly so, it's just perfect - every detail so well thought out right down to its little ribbon and bell!

I love the mini gold bunny selections which are just perfect for childrens Easter baskets, as are the mini eggs and the bunny paws - I think my favourite thing in their range this year though are the little chocolate carrots! Adorable!!

And if you're feeling extra generous you could treat your loved one to a full sized Lindor egg this year - I know that one of these would be my own personal choice for Easter! 

And finally, if you're looking for less of a full on extravagant easter egg and want more of a little treat instead - the Dairy Milk Egg n Spoon's are a great option and are bound to be a hit with the kids!
I love the novelty factor of the real egg carton!

So there we have it - I hope you find some Easter Egg-spiration from this post!

All eggs are available from all major retailers, nationwide. 

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The world’s hunkiest footballers

The World Cup is right around the corner and every tournament seems to generate a new hunky sexy footballing superstar. Those of us old enough to remember clearly France 98 will remember one David Beckham bursting onto the world sexy soccer scene, for example, so there my well be a few hunks waiting in the wings. But here are three we already know are some of the best looking players on the planet who should – all being well – be showing off their silky skills along with their nice legs and other attributes in Brazil this summer….

One guy that helps make a boring football match far more interesting is Gerard Pique who plays his club football for Barcelona. He is surely Spain’s sexiest player with a body to die for – whilst his visage is very easy on the eye, too.

But when you add into that volatile mix his stubble, baby blue eyes and sumptuous lips, you’ve pretty much got everything a girl could need in one sizzling hot Spanish package. So the further Spain go in the competition, the better, as far as we’re concerned. They may well go all the way – they are the holders after all and are around 6-1 with Betfair to be lifting the winner’s trophy on July 13th. And if they do, we can dream about going the distance with Gerard too.

Of course, if that is the case, we may well be enough for a nice Spanish twosome courtesy of the goalkeeper, Iker Casillas, who plays his club football with Real Madrid. Iker is a broody, sultry kind of guy who is known to have a bit of a Spanish temper but a great body.

But perhaps the pick of the payers is fellow Iberian and fellow Real Madrid superstar, Cristiano Ronaldo? Cristiano has the kind of Latin lover looks that appeal to a lot of ladies – and when it’s hot, he tends to strip off his shirt at the end of the game and show off his rippling brown torso that looks like it’s been coated with olive oil; a sight you won’t forget in a hurry. But be sure to catch Ronaldo’s Portugal when they play, as they aren’t expected to do all that well in the tournament. Currently, Portugal are better than 33-1 with Betfair.

Current favorites with Betfair are Brazil, with too many hunks to choose from. 
Then when you think about the Italians, Argentineans, Uruguayans, and all the other nations, it may well be worth tuning into the World Cup this summer – but the football is something of a sideshow!

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Monday, 14 April 2014

Dear Mothers Of Girls.....

Dear Mothers Of Girls,

You have a real challenge on your hands in today's world, to raise the next generation of independent, strong women.

What a huge task that is, and I know that you are all doing everything in your power to raise them well and give them every thing you can for a great start in life.

I'm not a mother of a girl myself, and raising a boy brings its own set of challenges - I need to make sure I teach him that chivalry isn't dead and never should be. I need to teach him how to treat and respect a woman. I need to teach him that it's ok to be sensitive. 
So many lessons that need to be taught.

But for girls, there are other things to consider.

I read a recent study that showed a third of girls aged 8 were worried about becoming fat to the extent that they had skipped breakfast or lunch.


Not much more than babies....already starting down the slippery slopes of fad diets and weight loss techniques.

It worries me  - who is setting these examples for them? Where are they learning to skip meals to lose weight? Why are 8 year old little girls even conscious of weight and their appearance, and what is a desirable figure to have?

Being a girl and raising a girl simultaneously must be a challenge in itself - as females it's so natural to so many of us to really worry about our physical appearance.

So many of us spend years of our lives worrying about our weight and our figures.

You can't turn off how you feel about your body and if you choose to diet or eat a certain way, that is your prerogative.

But please consider how much of this your daughter sees.

Our daughters learn almost everything from us, including self worth and self image - if your daughter see's Mummy always worried about every bite she eats, always counting calories, always complaining that she looks fat - won't she learn that being thin is the most important thing for a woman?

That she has to work so hard to make sure she never becomes fat...because fat is obviously the worst thing she could be?

If your daughter see's you always putting yourself down...standing in the mirror, berating your appearance...won't that teach her that looks are a big deal? That it's SO important that she is beautiful.

As a child, your mother is someone you usually look up to and admire. Someone who is beautiful to you. Someone you want to be just like.

To be told by your mother that she is actually fat and unattractive - wouldn't this throw off your self image? Wouldn't it teach the wrong lesson?

Of course telling our children that they are beautiful is important. But we should all be focusing just as much, if not more so, on complimenting their more important attributes - yes they are beautiful, but aren't they also smart? funny? kind? 

Surely these are the traits that need to be praised and encouraged. We need to let them know that these are things that really matter.

It breaks my heart to see so many mothers of young girls focusing so much on their physical apperance around the next generation of women ... at a time when their ideas of what's important are being formed in their young minds....

It all starts with you.

Show them that its what inside that counts. Don't berate yourself in front of them. Eat what you choose to and diet all you want to, but be careful not to expose them to that world too young.

Of course these things are important for boys as well, eating disorders and body image issues aren't exclusive to girls....but as a girl myself I know how these things affected me.

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Sunday, 13 April 2014

Seaside Saturdays....

I can't begin to explain how welcome this sight was to me this weekend.

I've never been Devon's biggest advocate - but when the sun comes out to play, I'm drawn to the seaside immediately and it's then that I start to truly appreciate where we live.

I love the sea.

Something about it makes me feel peaceful.

I'm not sure why....I'm not a good swimmer, and deep open water scares me....but standing at the seaside (or on a massive luxurious cruise ship, naturally!) soothes me.

Something about seeing how far out it goes makes me think of how much is out there - so much possibility, and so much wonder in the world. It makes my little problems seem insignificant, and sometimes that's a welcome feeling.

This weekend, the sun has decided to greet us at last and we had one of the warmest days I can remember having in a long time.

So we headed to one of our many nearby beaches at Teignmouth.

I'm bored of Torquay now - we've been there too often. We're saving all the seaside fun that Exmouth has to offer for when Summer properly kicks in.

So Teignmouth seemed like a good place to go.

We went for a walk along the sea front, and stood for a while just admiring the view.

Tyne seems to love the water too - I'm pleased about that.

Tyne of course was in his trike - he much prefers it to his buggy these days, where has my baby gone?!

After our walk we stopped at a seaside cafe for some chips, followed by some ice cream for Tyne - what's a trip to the seaside without ice cream?!

And then we spent some time just sitting in some pretty gardens, relaxing in the sunshine....

I love these days....I'm so looking forward to visits to other seaside towns nearby....Dawlish, Lyme Regis, Starcross and all the rest....Roll on summer!!!

We tried to get a nice summery family photo while we were out...quite difficult with no fourth person to take the shot! Hence a lot of out takes....

But eventually we managed to get one where all 3 of us were looking at the camera together...

Not the best photo ever, but it'll do for now!

I hope you've all been enjoying better weather where you are lately too.

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