Posted in baby clothing, baby fashion, clothing, fashion, Gifted, lavender sun, motherhood, parenting, product review, toddler fashion

Top 5…(GIFTED)

Things I look for when buying toddler clothes.

There are certain things I look for when choosing clothes for Ellie, especially now she is getting bigger and the clothes need to last much longer and here is my top 5 things I look out for when I need to buy her new clothes:

1. Durable – Does it wash well? Do any stains remove easily? This is a huge one for me as Ellie is a messy child; she spills her tea most nights and always wants to drink the milk from her cereal bowl in a morning. I am always looking for clothes that wash well, retain their shape and dont shrink when tumble dried 🙈 Now Ellie is in 2-3 clothes I want them to last her as long as possible.

2. Appropriateness – This one for me only seems to be an issue with girls clothes. I find girls clothes (even at age 2) are far too “grown up” for their age. Crop tops, thin material, see-through, spaghetti straps, I could go on. Boys clothes are so much more appropriate for their age, I went through a time when Ellie was a baby where I would only buy boys clothes because they weren’t so stupid looking but now Ellie is older it’s silly but I want her to look like a girl, pretty in pink with a frilly tutu. Clothes I would have hated being put in and I’m sure one day she will hate me for too!

3. Quality – I have already touched on this but the quality of girls clothes in particular is usually quite shocking. The generally use a thinner material which can sometimes look see-through and therefore end up not lasting very long at all. I always look for the quality of the clothes which is why I usually opt to buying Ellie’s clothes in person rather than online.

4. Price – This isn’t a reflection on the product itself but I do find the price of clothing has a huge impact on whether I buy it or not. I am a teaching assistant and so is my husband so our income isn’t much, especially as I currently only work part time. I believe that Ellie is still young and has no concept of how much clothes can cost or that she would need to look after them so I try to spend as little as possible.

5. Usability from Ellie’s perspective – Can she remove it herself? Ellie is just beginning to remove her own clothes confidently and occasionally put them on, I am now more conscious of whether she is able to do these herself. If it has buttons I know she’s not going to be able to do these herself and I want to build her confidence while she is learning.

I was approached by Lavender SUN Co who I have worked with previously (see old review here) to review their toddler range. I was so impressed with the baby items I received that I knew I wanted to collaborate again. This time I opted to review an outfit, which I loved from the second I saw it. I found a lot of the choices for toddlers didn’t fit in to my liking (mainly because they were quite girly and I am not) but the outfit I chose suited us perfectly.

Click to visit shop!

This fairytale 2 piece outfit is absolutely gorgeous!! The skirt is such a great quality and as it is elasticated I know it will fit Ellie for quite some time. I ordered this outfit in age 3-4 and there is plenty of growing room in the grey skirt yet it fits nicely now too (just a tad long as Ellie is quite short for her age).

#OOTD

The top is fairly thin but as I wanted this for the summer I know it won’t be too warm for her. It fits well and the pattern is so cute. Ellie loves finding the butterflies and counting the flowers she can see. I must admit, the top already fits fairly well and I am unsure of how long she will fit in it but again it is true to size and Ellie is just a short, dumpy girl like her Mama is so tops are already getting slightly small in age 2-3years.

I love that she is able to put the skirt on and remove it herself effortlessly and that the top has no buttons and as her confidence in dressing herself grows she will be able to put it on herself in no time at all. There are no buttons or fastenings to deal with which is great!

In regards to it being durable, the first time Ellie wore her new outfit we went to an Easter Egg Hunt at my grandparents house and she managed to get spaghetti bolognese sauce, chocolate and grass stains on the WHITE top and I was sure there would be stains. I removed the top as soon as I could and used some Oxy Action stain remover spray from Tesco and a quick 15 minute wash on its own and it has come amazingly clean, no stains or slight discolouring, it still looks brand new.

I couldn’t fault the customer service of Lavender Sun Co and the website was so easy to use, changing from. British Pounds to US Dollars was quick and meant I didnt need to figure out the difference in price myself.

If you want to have a look at the fantastic outfits available then head on over to Lavender Sun Co or to their instagram page.

Disclosure: I was gifted The Golden Key in exchange for an honest review. All views and opinions are my own. #gifted #AD

Posted in #BeASuperstar, Alder Hey, baby clothing, baby fashion, clothing, fashion, life after loss, motherhood, mothering a rainbow, Mum Blogger, mummy blog, parenting, parenting after loss, rainbow baby, Rainbow Mummy, toddler fashion

#beasuperstar

It all started a few years ago when my brother who if I remember rightly was around 17 at the time woke up and had quite a traumatic situation happen (which I won’t go in to the gory details) and meant he needed a very quick trip to A&E to be checked out. Any one who know’s my brother knows he can be quite dramatic at times and we had assumed this event wasn’t too serious however we were wrong.

A trip to A&E meant we had learnt that my brother had quite a poorly bladder, and had had this for quite some time…possibly from birth and this meant he needed to be taken to Alder Hey Hospital as our local hospital did not have the facilities to support him. My family were quite worried as Liverpool isn’t around the corner and it meant close to a 2 hour drive for my Dad there and back each day and he was in hospital for about a week I think. Due to his Down Syndrome, Alder Hey allowed him to stay on the children’s ward, he was mentally the same age as the other children on the ward and it helped knowing he would be acknowledged as both a child and a young adult. I remember being so incredibly scared, thinking he was going to die, a worry I had from a young age, and I’d be left without my wonderful, loving brother. Alder Hey were absolutely amazing with him and my family and I will always be grateful to them for their amazing facilities as without them my brother may not have been here today.

I share this story as a bit of a background as to why I feel such a need to participate in Matalan’s collaboration with Alder Hey around this time of year. For anyone who doesn’t know, for the past few years Matalan have released a special set of pyjamas/dog outfits/socks in partnership with Alder Hey in a bid to raise money AND most importantly awareness for a charity/hospital who do their VERY best to change the lives of their patients and families during their stay.

This partnership has been a huge hit since day one and the first year it became very difficult to get any of the merchandise however my Mother-in-law triumphed and was able to get Ellie a #getyourstripeson onesie for her very first christmas. She was a month old and I felt so proud that she was already supporting such a wonderful cause. Deep down I know had Jason lived, he most probably would have needed the care from Alder Hey too so it feels important to me that I support it whenever I can.

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December 2016 – #GetYourStripes

Last year I was aware of how much support this campaign receives so I was quick to order mine and Ellie’s matching PJs. It was the first time we had anything that matched and it emphasised my love for matching clothes! I felt like the design held a part of Jason as along with the spots, there was a small blue elephant, which is Alder Hey’s mascot, but I felt so connected to him when I wore them and matched as if I had some way of keeping both my babies close.

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December 2017 – #GetSpotted

I hadn’t really thought about this years campaign until it appeared on my FB timeline and I actually squealed with excitement. This year seems to have gone so fast, so much has happened and I currently have so much going on in my head that I am constantly chasing my tail. Once again, I ordered matching PJ’s for me and Ellie. I still wear my spots with pride however Ellie’s have been too small for quite some time now and it’s great knowing these should fit her for most of the year now she is in 2-3 years clothes rather than months!

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September 2018 – #BeASuperstar

I must say I am slightly disappointed that this years design doesn’t include the Alder Hey elephant however Ellie is so obsessed with stars and she is started to learn colours that we have had loads of fun matching the blue stars on our matching pyjamas so it is still a huge hit with us.

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September 2018 – #BeASuperstar

To sum up these PJs are super comfy, unisex so hide all my mum-tum flabby bits and are actually quite generous in size. They are nice and warm, perfect for the 4 months of snow we are apparently going to have this winter! For Ellie, the cuffed arms and legs are perfect as they are still slightly big for her (she’s not quite 2 yet) so ensure she isn’t always falling out of them. They are bright and colourful and have already given her lots of play with colours.

You can order yours here!

I am already excited for what next year’s designs will look like!
Anyone else got their #BeASuperStar PJ’s? I’d love to see them!

Posted in baby clothing, clothing, fashion, lavender sun, life after loss, motherhood, mothering a rainbow, mummy blog, parenting, parenting after loss, product review, rainbow baby, telford, toddler fashion

Stop Growing – Lavender Sun Co (Gifted)

With just a few days before Ellie is 17 months old it appears that she has had a huge growth spurt. Clothing is starting to get tight and hard to put on, t-shirts and tops in particular but due to her being short like her mama her leggings all still fit. 

That being said we’ve managed to keep all her bottoms for a bit longer however the 12-18 month tops have had to go in the charity sorting pile, this makes me feel so sad as I feel she barely wore most of her clothes. She just wasn’t in them for long enough! 

However, its not all gloomy as it means I have been able to have a bit of a shopping spree and get her she new 18-24 month clothes. I’ve had so much fun going through the supermarkets mainly and Primark of cause. I absolutely hate clothes shopping but get so excited at the thought of shopping for Ellie that I actually enjoy. I have tried to be extra good and shop small too. The businesses on IG especially and have found some amazing websites for when I’m not as poor as right now. 

I felt so lucky to have been approached by LavenderSun to collaborate with them and while looking on their site found I was spoilt for choice. It is obvious that from the day Ellie was born I’ve loved having geeky clothes to put her in; Batman/Batgirl, Spongebob, TMNT, Wonder Woman, Star Wars etc and Lavender Sun have a great range of clothing Including some geeky bits like this onesie I have ordered. (Click photo to view item in shop!)

How adorable is this Gameboy onesie which is actually made up to 24 months!

I also found myself looking at the more girly items, I realise that I should probably have ordered some summery clothes however this is England and I am pretty sure its going to rain more than have sunshine this summer and always think onesies are a great way of keeping Ellie warm. This Avocado onesie literally jumped at me, I love the design and the subtle girlieness, it is perfect for us as I’m not a huge fan of the really girly clothes you can find. 

The last thing I ordered spoke out to the Disney lover in me, more specifically the Jack Skeleton lover in me. For as long as I can remember I have loved Nightmare Before Christmas, the music, the characters, the whole film in fact so when I spotted their Nightmare Before Nap Time 2 piece set my heart screamed to buy it. 

Its no surprise to anyone who knows us or follows !e on here or IG that Ellie is an awful sleeper, she doesn’t sleep for long on her own and rarely self settles. From around 14 months she dropped a second nap so is pretty cranky most of the evening too…a true nightmare before nap time and I can’t wait to get these on her and snap a pic of the grumpy face I have grown to laugh at 😂.

I will definitely keep you updated when they arrive and I’m so excited to see the quality and how they look too. 
If anyone has any other sites or instashops they’d like to give a shout out too please let me know!