Thursday, 28 August 2014

Travelling with toddler...

Hello! *blows dust off the keyboard* I am here, I have been hibernating but today I decided to actually blog... *happy dance* I did one of these mummy travel posts last year so decided it was only fair if I did one this year too.

We are going on holiday to Egypt for 2 weeks and Esra will be 3 at the end of next month (seriously where did the time go?) and I have been in a bit of a panic trying to organise and get things prepared. Last year was a complete success, I had a happy toddler and she was entertained the whole time, but now that she is older it's a whole new ball game. Click HERE to see what I took with me for my almost 2 year old last year.

This year, I have broken it down to 3 categories: Beach, Flight & Evening ActivitiesHere is what I am taking....

This is everything!!




BEACH

Ok so, obviously the usual bucket, spade and shovels. I am also taking a "cooking" set that I picked up from the pound shop, I figured sand cooking would be entertaining! I am also taking silicone cupcake cases, candles and embellishments to make sand cupcakes which I know she will love as we always make them with play doh! Ice cream cones and scoop to make sand cones, extra bowl and cups for sandcastles, windmills for the sandcastles instead of flags. 'Melissa and Doug' butterfly binoculars, a toy camera which was a freebie from a magazine, a ball, water guns and a 'Pinypon' mermaid set.


I will not be giving all of these to her on the same day, I will try and spread them out and gift her the mermaids for good behaviour probably after a week. The 'Pinypon' set is adorable, the mermaids have interchangeable pieces and you can flip their heads the other way round and change their expression and store things in there head! Sounds crazy but cool for a toddler!! Also the idea for the beach was to keep it cheap and cheerful as stuff ALWAYS goes missing!
We are also taking an inflatable pool with a shade for the beach, a manta ray ride on, pool ring, arm bands, beach ball and a kite! Sounds like a lot of stuff but it's probably just right!



FLIGHT

The Trunki is coming with us once again as it's the best toddler luggage ever! It will be Esra's carry on flight activity bag and I think I have packed it strategically so this system should work well.


I have put another drawstring bag inside filled with activities so that I am not rummaging for things and I can just pull it out once we are in the air. The other side of the Trunki has a blanket, 2 changes of clothes, a couple of pull ups even though she is potty trained, iPad, iPad stand, headphones, her beloved teddy that she drags everywhere and a new toy.


The new toy is a mermaid 'Lalaoopsie' and I know she's going to love it, this will be handed to her once we get to the airport for good behaviour and to celebrate that we are going on holiday!


The 'Peppa pig' drawstring bag houses all of these lovely things that I have spent ages planning! Most of the things you see here are new so it will all be exciting for her. Here's whats inside;

  • Book - 1001 Things to spot in the sea
  • Book - The Singing Mermaid
  • Book - Maisy's Pool
  • Book - Goodnight Moon
  • Book - There's a Hippopotamus on the roof eating cake.
  • Book - Peppa Pig 'Let's Go'
  • Usbourne Holiday Sticker Book 
  • Peppa Pig Sticker books X2
  • Stickers - (Galt sticker book, Frozen stickers & Peppa Pig stickers)
  • Colouring pages, notebook & clickable colour changing pen
  • Melissa & Doug Princess crayon set
  • Lalaloopsy Gel stickers in tin
  • Peppa Pig puzzle
  • 'Mudpuppy' magnetic mermaid dress up 
  • Horse lacing card
  • Felt button lacing busy bag
  • Gel clings for window
  • Small toys


The toys are in this little mermaid zipper bag, they are all small and perfect for role play. All of the babies are new and she has never seen them so she will definitely be excited and enjoy them. The will be wrapped up and I will hand one over to her every so often. The babies are by 'Yogurtini' and they are also scented, I picked them up from Argos on sale for £3.99 from £9.99 for a pack of 3 and I got 3 sets so there is plenty to keep her busy. There are also a couple of her ponies, a table, a swing and a car for some good times on the plane!


EVENING ACTIVITIES

So the evenings are quite difficult and I will rely on the iPad as much as I can as it works, but for some unplugged play we need activities! I have kept them all as compact as can be. Everything apart from the activity books fits neatly inside this zipper bag. The small tin houses lego which will be perfect for late evening chilling, I found this idea on pinterest, and it's definitely a good one.


We have more sticker books, Peppa Pig colouring pages, painting with water, mermaid scene set, Egyptian colouring book & a couple of magazines with loads of freebies. I have also included 3 puzzles, finger puppets, more stickers, balloons, glow sticks, bubbles, gel clings, a caterpillar tin game and a few busy bags.



The glow sticks will be amazing in the evenings!



SNACKS

If you are wondering where the snacks be at.... the snacks are in this bag and daddy will be in charge of them. The bag is by 'dotcomgiftshop' but I got it from Sainsburys for £3.


I have been collecting snacks for a week now, I have a mix of healthy and non healthy because you gotta do what you gotta do! I have however split up gummy bears into small portions with grip seal bags so that at least I have some control. I managed to find some organic lollipops that are gelatine free and vegan by Biona, All the snacks pictured are halal and suitable for vegetarians,


Wow, that seems like a lot doesn't it?! Well, I would rather be the Mary Poppins mama constantly bringing "stuff" out of my bag than dealing with an unhappy toddler on an airplane. If there are other toddlers round us they will get stickers and lollipops too, happy toddler = happy mummy.

So do you think I will get a chance to read my book? :) 

What would you take on a 2 week beach holiday with a toddler? Anything I missed?

Saturday, 26 April 2014

Toddler crochet & a peek at Esra's room!

Happy Saturday!

Last night I finished a cushion I was working on and wanted to share...


I used the popcorn stitch and various colours, I had already made her a tiny version and just enlarged it. I love how it brings out all of the colours in her room.


I have placed the Ikea Rast chest of drawers beside her bed as a bedside table, I painted it with Wickes 'Damsel Chic' chalk paint and combined it with white.


I used a mixture of my scrap yarns for the cushion all of which were 100% cotton.


I LOVE the 'Pirum Parum' pear poster and knew I wanted it for Esra's room ages ago, I have used and Ikea 'Ribba' frame for it. The 'Maileg' bunnies are so beautiful and perfect for any little girls room. I added the neon yellow rabbit from 'Zara home' for a pop of colour and for a fresh modern feel. There's also a little 'Maileg' mouse sitting in a yarn candle holder I picked up from 'TK Maxx', it's so cute and a great way to bring more grey into the room.

The small suitcases are by 'Sasse & Belle' which I purchased from Amazon, I love the colours and ditsy feminine print. We have 'Play Doh' stored in the bottom, wooden pattern blocks in the middle and sponge alphabet letters on the top. Talk about pretty toy storage!


Also from 'Sasse & Belle' I got the heart bunting that I have hung across the room to have some continuity in the room. Her pink floral lamp shade was a complete bargain from Amazon, it gives off a sweet pink glow at night and Esra is completely and utterly obsessed with it. I handmade her pom pom garland that sits nicely on top of the poster, I love the pops of colour against the grey!


And some more toddler crochet for you! I made a couple of these baskets and one is hanging on a knob, I combined 2 yarns (a pink & grey) to form a thicker strand and used a 6mm hook to single crochet the basket. I started off with 2chains, and SC 10 into the first loop, then 2SC into each loop, then I did 1SC, 2SC, 1SC, 2SC etc in the next round then 1,1,2,11 and then you enlarge accordingly I don't even think I'm making sense, but you enlarge your circle until you have the desired base size then single crochet all the way round about 15-20 times  and that gives you the basket, I finished off with SS all the way round to have a sturdy top and then I made a little loop.


And now this bunny sits perfectly inside!

Well that's it for now, but I am thinking of making a YouTube room tour video as I can explain myself properly, I also took a recording of the 'before' so it will be fun to compare! On the other side of her room is the play area, and on the side we have a reading area. It's almost done, and the things that are left are her blinds, her closet door and a few other bits and pieces.

Speak soon, and enjoy your weekend! xXx

Friday, 25 April 2014

Loving & Hating...

Good morning all, long time no speak... Don't ask! But I'm back!

Lately I have really been into my neutrals, and haven't fully got into the Spring mood, I'm hoping next month will change that! However, there have been some standout items that need some praise!



  • Bobbi Brown 'Bone' Eyeshadow - This is the perfect 'I'm in a rush shade' as all I do is sweep it all over my lid and it's done. It has a natural brightening effect and is great for everyday.
  • Mac 'Pure Zen' Lipstick - I'm in love with this lipstick, I got quite a few lipsticks this month and this was the one that wowed me, even though I probably have a million different nudes, there's something about finding the next best nude shade. It's the perfect milky peach that has just enough pigment to suit m complexion, it's on the same wavelength as 'Hue' just much peachier. An honourable mention goes to 'Rebel' as I wore that a few days in a row just dabbed on my lips with lip balm.
  • Bourjois CC Cream - This colour correcting cream is perfect for everyday, it has a light liquid texture that gives a semi matte sheen. I apply this with a wet sponge as I got the darkest shade which was a shade too dark for me, so using a wet sponge helps sheer it out and blends into my skin perfectly or I mix a little bit with my moisturiser for an even lighter finish. The coverage is buildable and lasts almost the whole day on my normal/oily t zone skin.
  • Bare Minerals 'Medium Beige' Foundation - I have rediscovered my love for mineral foundation, I forgot how flawless it makes my skin look and for some reason it gives much more coverage than I always expect. I use it on days where I am feeling oily or when I want a flawless finish.
  • Urban Decay 'Walk of Shame' Lipgloss - This is a neutral nude that is ever so smooth, it glides on so easily, isn't sticky and layers nicely over 'Pure Zen' lipstick. What more does one want from a gloss? Oh and I like the 'flunk' noise it makes when you open and close the lid. *weird* 
  • Mac 'Well Dressed' Blush - This is probably my favourite 'go to' pink blush, I have used it for years and it never fails me. It applies the perfect amount of colour in a couple of sweeps, it's quite sheer so you really need to build it up if you want it to be more vivid. I personally, prefer the natural finish so the lighter the better for me. I don't really like my cheeks looking too pink and 'Well Dressed' is the perfect balance with it's cool pale pink undertones.


However it's not all good! I have a couple of products I have been HATING!
  1. No7 Stay Perfect Macara (Gold Tube) - OMG this is the worst mascara ever, it has the thinnest wand which I'm not going to lie separates the lashes nicely, but oh boy when you come to remove it, it's the worst, I lost so many of my lashes regardless of what eye makeup remover I used. I officially hate all fibre mascaras!! The lashes on my left eye are uneven and I have started using 'Li Lash' again to remedy the problem. 
  2. Real Techniques Miracle complexion Sponge - Ok so, there's so much hype on this, and my experience has been awful. My sponge after a few uses has holes in it, it won't return to it's shape and the stains don't wash out properly. I will put my hands up and say I don't wash it immediately after use as I usually have a toddler wrapped around my legs so I leave it for later. But regardless, I'm not a happy bunny. However, it was a dream to use it before it got damaged as it particularly applied concealer beautifully. I have however, now resorted to the cheaper multipack sponges and just use them once and bin them which works out to be more effective and hygienic. 
Have you tried any of the products mentioned and is there any products you are hating recently?

Friday, 28 March 2014

DIY - De-Puffing Coffee Face Mask

Good morning and happy Friday! Tonight is 'date night' and I want to share with you a mask I will be doing especially for today.

My face is particularly puffy in the mornings and sometimes throughout the day depending on what I eat. However, I have found a way to counteract this in a simple and effective way containing only 2 ingredients.

Caffeine, one of the hottest ingredients in skincare targets tired eyes and faces and I am a bit tired of people trying to sell me products which contain caffeine when it's easily available from the comfort of your own home. Why not just slap the caffeine in this case coffee which contains high does of it directly on to your face?!


Well me and my bright ideas, I mixed a spoonful of coffee with a little bit of hot water to form a paste, left it to cool and voila, a mask was born. I have seen other similar coffee masks and you can do it any way as long as coffee is the main ingredient, but the way I do it definitely has impressive effects.


Caffeine works as an anti inflammatory and has the ability to de-puff swollen skin. It also has the benefit of tightening the skin and reducing under eye circles which is why so many skin care brands contain the ingredient. Caffeine is also very easily absorbed into the skin so the results are almost instant.


I apply the mask in the mornings and leave to settle for about 20 minutes, the tightening sensation is incredible and well worth a shot, it definitely wakes you up. Once I wash the mask off, the puffiness on my cheekbones and eye area have disappeared as my skin has tightened and brightened and overall I look more awake and energised. You can also add honey, milk and even coffee grounds to achieve different results.


The best thing about this mask is it's free and fool proof and don't worry it doesn't stain the face! I definitely recommend this to all the mamas and early starters or if you have a special event and want your skin to look alive!

What are some of your favourite DIY face masks? 

Wednesday, 26 March 2014

Micro Bead Hair Extensions!

Good Morning all, I'm coming at you this morning with my new longer hair! *happy dance*

I was with a friend last week and she convinced me very easily that I needed longer hair, I had been thinking about it for a while as my hair is in an 'in-between' shoulder length style which I have been HATING, and to top it off, the colour was pulling red as I had recently dyed it with a supposed 'chocolate brown' *side eye*. I was either going to chop my hair or elongate my locks and yesterday  was the day. I really did enjoy having 'sew in hair extensions' in the past but needed a new method which lasted longer. I have about 5 different types of 'clip ins' at home which never get any love whatsoever, that feeling of a clip in coming out? no bueno.


I went for the 'micro bead' method which attaches the extension to your own hair via looping it through and then clamping it shut. My hairdresser which is also a close friend said that the beads vary, and she used the beads which has silicone on the inside to protect the natural hair follicle and metal on the outside to prevent rust. This type of extension is supposed to be non damaging to the hair and very long lasting if you take good care of it. 



She used 100 micro bead  extensions which is 3/4 of a set, they are mainly placed on the back and scattered around the sides. She also dyed my hair a dark ash brown to counteract the redness which is basically my natural hair colour so it will be pretty low maintenance! The bonds aren't visible and I can have my hair out, pulled back or even half up half down and still conceal everything.
  

The whole process took about half a day but it only took about an hour and a half to attach the actual microbeads which was so quick as I was expecting to sit there for hours, luckily my friend is a pro and has been doing this for years and actually training to be a teacher so it really made my mind at ease. She is a mobile hairdresser based in London so she came to my house and we was able to chill and chat and enjoy the whole process. I couldn't imagine taking Esra with me to a salon and sitting there so this way she was able to take an afternoon nap whilst we got busy. The beads are placed like brickwork and scattered so the result is natural and it all kind of blends in. I was a little worried initially as I didn't want scraggly extensions and was aiming for a natural result which is what I got. We decided not to add choppy layers for now and only added long layers at the front, we will however reevaluate soon to see if I change my mind. If you look carefully you can see some of my top layers from my natural hair are visible but you will only be able to tell if I wear my hair dead straight and I plan on wearing them wavy most of the time. I shall see how I get on, right now I can't wait for boho braids! :) However, I do think that layering it a little more will give a more voluminous effect when curled, I will do another update if I change them.



These extensions can last between 6-12months, depending on how you take care of it, this also heavily relies upon the hair, mine was 'Mixed Eastern European' hair which blends in with my own perfectly as the texture is exactly the same as mine. It also depends on how the extension is applied, like if it's positioned correctly and the correct use of beads. You also have to take very good care of it, and it's recommended you sleep with it in a braid to prevent tangling. You also have to be careful with heat damage and be careful not to apply direct heat to the bonds as the keratin will melt off. I may need to freshen it up in a couple of months but I will see how I get on depending on my regrowth. This is actually a great way to grow out my hair as I can enjoy the process along the way. As for now, apparently I should expect a week of feeling uncomfortable as I need to get used to the extra weight in my hair, but I'm sure I will be fine. They don't feel half as uncomfortable as the first day I got the sew ins done. I will definitely do an update on how I'm caring for my hair, and a full on review once I have them removed whenever that may be!


What are your thoughts on 'micro bead' hair extensions? Would you do it? I'm in LOVE, excuse me whilst I do a little dance and enjoy my hair!

For more info on my hair or to get a quote, contact Chidem 

Tel - 07983 766698
Email - cigdem.unlu@outlook.com
Instagram - @cheeko_famous 

(I was not paid for this post, and I did not get this treatment for free, I paid and couldn't be happier!)

Thursday, 20 March 2014

Shopping for thy self!

Good morning and happy Thursday! Wow it has been ages since I last blogged, we are now pretty much settled into our new place minus the dining table, doors, my dressing table and tiles in the bathroom.... Errr ok we still have a lot to do but it's looking pretty good. 

Yesterday I treated myself to a few things that I'm excited about so naturally I had to share!


  • KIEHL'S Creamy Eye Treatment - I just love the texture of this, it's basically one of the most hydrating eye creams on the market, it has a thick but smooth consistency and has a slight sheen finish which I love. It's enriched with avocado oil and will enable my concealer literally glide on. I aim to use this mainly in the mornings as I am using a different eye cream at night which is more of an anti ageing one.
  • AVENE Thermal Spring Water - I go through bottles of this stuff like it nobodys business. I use it to freshen up during the day particularly when I need a little wake me up, I use it like a toner to mist over my face (although now the SA at Kiehl's made me want their calendula toner) I also use it after my makeup almost like a setting spray when I am out of Mac fix+.
  • THE BODY SHOP Mango Body Butter - I love body butters and the body shop ones have always been my favourite, I used them throughout my pregnancy and love all the different scents. Mango has always been high up there scent wise and yesterday I managed to grab the body butter, shower gel and perfume all for £15 as they had some kind of special offer.
  • BENEFIT Fake Up Concealer (Shade 02) - I LOVE love love this, it's my second tube and I was scraping the remainder of the last tube with a brush and usually I'm quick to toss products. This concealer has a balm and an extremely creamy and hydrating texture that manages to last all day without creasing.
  • REAL TECHNIQUES Miracle Complexion Sponge - I have wanted to try this for ages but it's always been out of stock but I finally got it yesterday *happy dance* I have never tried the 'Beauty Blender' as I find the price ridiculously high for a sponge, but have tried a dupe version in the past by 'Cosmopolitan' which I really enjoyed. The shape of this RT one really excites me and I'm really looking forward to trying this baby on my face. The idea is to wet the sponge then bounce/stipple your base to create a airbrushed dewy finish and use the different angles to get different finishes.


The sponge up close...


What have you purchased for yourself lately? 
And do you have any favourite Kiehl's products you would recommend?