Going back to blogging after giving birth

Going back to blogging after giving birth has genuinely been a lot easier than expected. This is partly down to the fact that my husband has been with me every step of the way, which I wasn’t factoring in that this would be happening. So, we are making the most of spending this incredible time together until the new year, when sadly he will have to go back to work. I went ‘back to work’ in a very exciting way- my first blogger event sans baby and maternity bra (thank the lord!) was an exclusive party with KISS products and Pixie Lott.

The party was at The Cuckoo Club, Mayfair, a very smart affair indeed and one that I had not visited before. The atmosphere was busy from the get go, so I decided to take my drink and have a sit down with a talented henna artist.

@tropicalbirdart

ImPRESS nails and KISS lashes were being applied to the room- I loved seeing the latest releases and some of my favourites too.

Such a glamorous table! I got my all time favourite KISS lashes applied- ‘Lily’, pics below!

It was great bumping into Fran (@apageofme), another blogger babe!

Finally I got to have a chat with the latest brand ambassador for KISS- Pixie Lott! She wanted to know all about baby Alice and told me she really wanted kids too, but waiting for the right time.

See if you can spot my auto, just above Pixie’s. Below are my top two picks from the latest imPRESS collections. The most amazing new colours and designs for the party season available from Boots in store and online.

Going back to blogging after giving birth has been possible thanks to the incredible support network around me- you know who you are so thank you. And as for me, I am happy to spend the day away to have some time by myself as a blogger. Then when I get home, Alice is waiting for me!

Saharasplash x

Catch up with my latest parenting post: Alice’s first scrapbook by Potato Print! 

 

Baby massage class with Spa Experience

At just 24 days old, Alice took her first journey into the city. My sister Evie came along with us to help out during the day. We were headed towards Kensington at 10am (after a quick stop to get some hash browns) for a very exciting blogger event. Alice had been invited to experience a baby massage class at Kensington Leisure Centre hosted by Spa Experience.

I was a little nervous about taking her out for an entire day after just little outings, but as per usual she was brilliant.

It was also the first time taking out my Fact + Fiction baby bag!

We arrived just in time and the setup was carefully laid out for mummies and babies.

Our Spa Experience instructor Neji talked us through what to expect throughout the class and it was super relaxed and chilled out. We got Alice out of her nappy, thankfully she had just done her business so we were safe!

We used the oil provided to practice massaging the legs which is the easiest part to start with as baby massage beginners. We practiced the ‘Swedish milking technique’ which uses both hands. You go from ankle to thigh with one hand while keeping hold of the ankle with the other. We also used ‘rolling’ on the legs and she loved the ankle circles!

We sang songs to create a lovely atmosphere, and by this time Alice wanted to have a feed and walk around to see the room so we listened in on the last part of the class.

After a boosting smoothie, the mums were treated to mini spa treatments and so I opted for a back neck and shoulder massage.

We also came away with some lovely products and a book all about baby massage. If you are interested in the book, I’ve got the link for you here: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Infant-Massage-Handbook-Loving-Parents/dp/0285636170

Thank you so much to Spa Experience for inviting us along to the baby massage class- we had a fabulous time and have been massaging at home ever since!

Saharasplash x

Find out what’s in my Big Fat Christmas Beauty Gift Guide this year!

Best and worst moments of 2017

Can you believe it’s less than 7 weeks to go now until Christmas? Sorry for putting the C word out there to those of you still in denial that we are almost done with the year! Seeing that the end is now upon us, I’m doing a post on the best and worst moments of 2017. It’s been a pretty life changing year for the Schaefer household, and here’s why…

January: I’m pregnant!

So this was probably one of the best starts to the year we could possibly have asked for. Finding out I was pregnant just weeks after our wedding, it didn’t quite seem real. It took me a while to get used to the idea- then my tummy started growing and the reality set in!

May: Last holiday of the year to Dubai

Paul and I were just in time to take our annual trip over to Dubai before I became too pregnant. In May we made our way over and had (as usual) one of the best Dubai holidays* in just a short space of time. We stayed with our extended family, saw the godchildren, did a bit of baby clothes shopping and had a rather amazing time. See the blog post here.

June: Goodbye Harley

June saw us say goodbye to Harley, our Harlequin Great Dane. He was 13 years of age and such a huge part of my life. I had accepted that it was his time for a while as he had started going downhill in 2017. In June we made the hard decision to let him go and now I like to think he is running around as wild as can be.

August: That freak hay bale accident

Yes, a freak hay bale accident occurred in August. Paul and I were setting up Alice’s cot in her nursery one afternoon when we heard the loudest crash from the living room. We came in to find that our entire wall had a huge crack, the skirting board was jutting away from the wall and the entire contents of our bookshelf was in disarray on the floor. As a hay truck drove past, one of the bales had come off and tumbled into the side of our house! Don’t worry, it’s all being fixed up next year and is structurally sound, but for now our living room sort of resembles that crack in the wall from Dr Who!

October: Hello baby Alice

After what seemed like the longest wait in September, baby Alice arrived on the 16th October- just ten days late! I had the perfect birth, just how I had planned which I know I was very lucky to have. I also had three birth partners with me the whole time- my husband, sister and Mum who all played vital roles and I couldn’t have done it without them.

I’m allowed to not look my best during labour right?! 

October: One week post partum nightmare

After the birth, things took a turn for the worse in terms of my health. I had a terrible 5 days of shortness of breath, and physically not being able to even walk to the bathroom by myself. I ended up being re-hospitalised the weekend after Alice was born and it turned out my red blood cell count was to blame. As soon as I had an intravenous iron drip I was instantly better! I just wish I had known what was wrong earlier as it did put a spanner in the works for Alice’s first week here. My family stepped in to look after her while I couldn’t, and I now know for next time what to look out for earlier.

Here’s my expressing efforts that had to happen during the night in hospital- wouldn’t wish that on anyone! 

Not wanting to leave on a worst moment, I’ll leave you with a moment I am looking forward to…

November: Our one year wedding anniversary

Paul and I are imminently close to celebrating our first wedding anniversary. It’s crazy to think that one year has passed since our two day wedding ceremonies. If you haven’t seen the pics then head over to part one and part two. To celebrate, we will be eating our final piece of wedding cake which we froze, having a bottle of wedding champagne which we saved and going to see the Justice League- badass!

Saharasplash x

Thanks for reading the best and worst moments of 2017. What’s been your best and worst moment of 2017?

Head over to my latest beauty post celebrating National Spa Week! 

*This is a sponsored post

My baby is a mini rocker with Rockbox

I will tell you, this week has been a tough one. Parenthood is unexpected and wonderful and brings many happy moments, but with those moments there comes a certain amount of heartache and struggle too. There are countless times in the day where I think to myself ‘I’m not doing the best I can for my baby’. I have a huge amount of support around me, and I never think for a second that my baby isn’t safe or loved, it’s more down to the little things- could I have prevented that baby meltdown for example or gotten her changed a little quicker to avoid upset. These feelings I know are absolutely normal and I just have to roll with it. Alice is a pretty chilled out little thing for the most part, and although I don’t feel like a rockstar as much as I used to, here is how my baby is a mini rocker with Rockbox.

The Rockbox company designs the most incredible bespoke gift boxes for different types of people and occasions. You can browse the site for ready made boxes, or you can create your own with an array of gorgeous products, cards and accessories for that personal touch. This is the Mini Rocker gift box which is perfect for a gender neutral arrival:

Included in the mini rocker box is a cute little xoxo postcard along with a Bibs and Booties UK set which I adore on Alice!

There is also a silicone teether ring in the shape of a cloud to match the monochrome vibes from Foxs Felts. She will need a little more time to start using this!

Here are the cutest booties with raindrop pattern to match the bib:

Alice rocks them wearing nothing else, and we can’t wait to match them to an outfit for a trip out soon. She is definitely a mini rocker already, from the way she is independent, strong and ready to go at any moment.

My baby is a mini rocker with Rockbox this week and I’m so proud to have this little star in my life- tears and fears included!

Shop the full Rockbox range here

Saharasplash x

Thanks for reading guys! Check out my post on a little auto love n care for some more cute baby photos and car tips for winter ❄️

PR samples included

Talking comfort and taking care of your car this winter

So I haven’t been driving my car recently, mainly because of that fact that I’ve just had a baby, and stitches are still healing. It’s been quite a rollercoaster month this month and we are now experiencing that time of year where the temperatures and clocks are changing. This post about talking comfort and taking care of your car this winter is for all the drivers out there as a kind reminder to keep you and your car happy this season no matter how busy your life can get.

1. Tyres

It’s so important to check your tyres regularly if you are out and about on the roads. Tread can be easily measured with a 20p piece. Place the coin in one of the main grooves in your tyre. If the outer band of the coin is obscured then your tread is fine. If not, it’s not legal! On Fife Autocentre* you can book tyres in Stirling, but you can find the right tyre and local branch to you by doing a quick online search.

2. Water

I like to have my water checked every month, usually by my husband. You need to make sure that during the winter months that your water is checked according to the changing temperatures. If we are having a rainy spell, you would want to check it more often. This is because you are more likely to use your wipers more to get rid of dirt and smears left by the rain. If we are expecting frost, make up a bottle of 1/8 antifreeze 7/8 water before pouring in. This will help to avoid those crappy mornings waiting to leave your driveway with a frosted up screen and a frozen water supply!

3. Oil

If you regularly use and service your car (every 12 thousand miles) you shouldn’t need to check your oil. But if you are a sporadic driver or you aren’t racking up the miles to service it regularly, then best to check that dipstick!

4. Comfort

It’s sometimes easy to forget this factor when driving. As someone who makes continuous journeys back and forth to London and Ipswich, it’s really important that I am comfy in the car. I have discovered a fantastic cushion during my pregnancy this year which has helped ease my aches and pains as they progressively got worse during my pregnancy and beyond. The Sciatic Pain Relief Cushion is one of a kind and has been so imperative for each and every car journey lasting over 30 minutes for me. Its unique style and shape help to ease signs and symptoms of sciatica.

You can take it out and use it in the workplace with any seat or chair. The first car journey home from hospital was not nice after having quite a few stitches, but I was so happy to see my cushion waiting for me in my husband’s car when it was time to head home with our baby girl. I am continuing to use the cushion post pregnancy as it makes the journeys so much easier and less painful.

Find out more about the Sciatic Pain Relief Cushion here.

I hope that this piece on talking comfort and taking care of your car this winter has reminded you to make those all important checks if you haven’t done so recently. Stay safe on the roads, and Alice is loving her current car setup!

Saharasplash x

*This is a sponsored post 

Why not see what recipe I’ve posted just in time for Halloween 🎃 click right here

Clever Little Discoveries for baby

As a mum to be and also an observant bystander when seeing parents out and about, I know that being a mum/dad is a tough job. From birth, you are responsible for a new life, and you want to do the best you can possibly do for your child. Of course, no child is going to breeze through the first few months/years of its life without some drama, be it a bump or bruise or a fever or trapped wind. I’ve come up with a few items from a very handy website that you may well already know about, but if not then continue reading my clever little discoveries for baby, sponsored by Babythingz.

1. Sock Ons- £2.99

I had a few pairs of these given to me as a present for my baby shower. They are such a cute little gift which I could see saving a lot of time and hassle. I cannot wait to try them out as I know my baby is going to be a real fidget bum just like me!

2. Head support- £15.99

I really do think that something like this is worth investing in as it can be used straight from birth and up to around four months. Its main function is to prevent flathead but I’m guessing that by the looks of this cushion, baby will find it super comfy and supportive too! You can use this in a bouncer, rocker, carrycot or wherever your baby’s head is lying and it will help elevate them a few more degrees which makes a lot of difference to their field of vision.

3. Crib wedge- £24.99

This is a little different to the head support. The crib wedge (designed for the crib or cot) can also be used from birth but is designed to help baby sleep better. The main reasons you should give this a go is if your baby suffers from regurgitation, colic or breathing problems during the night. Of course, these are all very common occurrences in babies, so I really wanted to show you this as I had never seen one on the shelves before.

4. Wood effect corner cushions- £3.99

For someone who lives in a farmhouse where the walls and ceilings are pretty much wooden, I’m definitely investing in these! The usual plastic looking corner cushions just wouldn’t fit in with our decor at all, so these are definitely on my purchase list for when baby gets a bit older!

5. Crib rail teething protector- £18.99

Carrying on from the last clever little discovery, again for when baby is older, this caught my eye on the Babythingz site. Available in multiple lengths, this looks like a saviour buy if you are walking in to find your baby sucking on its crib edges! The protector will provide a safe and soft surface for baby to bite down on when teething starts to kick in.

6. Baby banz sunglasses- £12.99

Lastly, I wanted to share this cute little item with you. Again, the website has a ton of choice in colour and style, but I fell in love with these retro white sunglasses! Suitable from 0-2 years and fully adjustable, hopefully this will help those parents out there who struggle to keep sun protective headgear on baby’s head!

 

There’s so much more to discover on the Babythingz site. For winter time, I’m loving the look of these cosytoes to go into my pram.

Let me know what you think of my clever little discoveries for baby and if you have tried/seen anything like these items before?

Saharasplash x

This is a sponsored post 

See my maternity photos from 27 weeks right here before you go!