Today Bean Daddy & I headed to the Baby & Toddler Show at Liverpool's Echo Arena.
As I have mentioned previously, we won our tickets from a magazine competition - I'm quite glad about this as I thought there would have been a lot more going on than there actually was - if I we had paid the £30.00 door price I would not have been too impressed.
There was a lot of nice entertainment going on for kids just outside the main stallholders area, which was nice to see - but of course my main interest was shopping and scoping out new baby products!
There were approximately 50 stalls selling a range of maternity, baby and childrens items - there was a real mix of products and services on offer, everything from demonstrations of facials to 4D ultrasound scans and all sorts inbetween.
I had expected to be tempted to spend a lot more money than I did, but perhaps that's because we've already kitted Bean out with clothes and his pram is already ordered, car seat is sitting here waiting for him, and Nanny is buying the crib - so all of our "Big stuff" is sorted.
There were lots of prams, car seats, gorgeous cribs, changing bags, etc on offer today so if people were looking for this kind of thing they may have been more impressed than I was.
I should also mention that we had missed the majority of the speakers by the time we arrived, so perhaps that would have added to things too....
I did treat myself to a QI massage taster session as it was on offer for just £10 - It was a lovely shoulder and neck massage, and even though it was a very short demonstration I did come away feeling much more relaxed - it backfired on me a little however, as I came straight home and booked a full pregnancy massage for next weekend! Oops!
There were a few things that caught my attention today however....
One thing I learned that I hadn't been aware of is that Lush now run their very own Lush Spa's! WHO KNEW?!
I passed the Lush stall and was a little disappointed that they weren't actually selling any products as I had hoped to pick up some items since I have been too pregnant and lazy to venture all the way into town to visit the store - so when the stall holder offered me a free hand scrub and massage taster, I gladly accepted.
What she gave me was a taster of the "Comforter" massage - she started by using a deliciously scented warm chocolate exfoliating scrub on my hand, wiping it off and then using a warm rose-scented massage cream - it was bliss and I can only imagine how amazing it must be to have the full body experience!
The assistant gave me a breakdown of the treatments available at Lush spa's and they all sound like absolute heaven - I plan on paying it a visit once the baby is born (Bean Daddy's treat, of course!)
And so what did I purchase at the Baby & Toddler Show?!
Amazingly for me, I actually only bought one item!
At first glance, I thought this was just another swaddle blanket until the nice man on the stall gave us a detailed demonstration - I was amazed by how much this product actually does.
The item is - in very basic terms - a heavy-duty blanket with handles.
Its main use is for picking up the baby without having to bend over - this is perfect for anybody with back problems, which lets face it - most women will have after 9 months of pregnancy and goodness knows how many hours of labour!
The blanket was demonstrated with a 9 lb baby doll inside, and when I had a go at lifting it I was genuinely surprised by how much easier and more comfortable the SnuggleBundl made it.
The first thing I thought of was the fact that I am probably giving birth by c-section - how much easier would this product make it for me to lift the baby after the operation!!
Once you've lifted the baby, you can cradle them as normal all snug in their blanket - or if you're putting them down for a nap, you can swaddle the baby and secure the blanket using the ties attached.
Then there are all the other uses of the product - we were shown how much easier the SnuggleBundl makes the process of getting the baby in and out of the car seat and/or pushchairs and shopping trolleys - I hate the idea of constantly heaving a car seat in and out of the car so this really appealed to me.
Then there's the use of the blanket for rocking the baby to sleep - admittedly I have yet to test this on a real live baby, but it certainly looked like something that would be effective.
The product is also perfect for discreet breast feeding, allowing you to snuggle your baby and use the blanket to cover yourself over.
The SnuggleBundl is currently available in one unisex design, but the company hope to expand the range in the future.
I am certainly glad I found this product, and will be doing a further in-depth review on it once Bean arrives! :)
If you'd like more information on the SnuggleBundl please visit their Facebook Page.
If YOU would like to attend a Baby Show, I have the perfect competition for you!
Sparkles & Stretchmarks have teamed up with The Baby Show @ Excel London and are offering you the chance to win TWO tickets to the show - please check out this post to enter!