My prize from [Stamp]tastic!

Just before the kids finished school I won this amazing prize. Everything was a little hectic so I forgot all about sharing it with you until… I had to label the new uniform for the new school year.

The Prize

I won a personalised Stamp and ink pad and a fabric pen.

I got to design the stamp myself. I wrote my son’s full name, choose the font and added an anchor icon.

I choose a black ink pad although there were other colours to choose from.

I also got to choose a fabric pen. I decided to go with white as Noah’s shoes often have a black sole and I figured I would probably need it to write in them.

The stamp

I hope my pictures help illustrate how the stamp works. It reminds me a lot of a high quality crafting stamp.

You push the stamp onto the ink pad, then onto the clothes label. The stamp is clear which enables to you see where you have placed it and that it is the correct way around. It dries pretty quick too!

The pen

I wasn’t excited about the pen but it has really impressed me. Noah has wore his cap all summer and the ink hasn’t rubbed off. It was easy to write with and stands out clearly on the black material.


I would definitely buy these items again. They’ve made it easy to label everything.

I love how the stamp makes everything look so neat and perfect and how clear the pen is on dark colours.

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3 Things to do, FOR YOU, before baby is due

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3 Things to do, FOR YOU, before baby is due

There are loads of things you need to do before your baby arrives but here I list the top three things to do, for you.

Pamper day

There are lots of lovely treatment bundles offered for pregnant women. However, you can choose individual treatments and make your own bundle.

I choose to get a manicure as I didn’t want my nails to ruin my newborn’s pictures. I got a pedicure as I struggle to reach my feet now and a foot massage really helps bring down the swelling. I got a lash lift & tint so I don’t need to worry about mascara when going makeup free.

I like treatments that make my life easier. Although, now she is late I may need to get my nails redone.

NB: You may need to remove nail polish at hospital if you need certain procedures, for example a c-section.

Making Memories

I knew as I get more pregnant I would find it harder to do things but I still wanted to make memories with my son. We had a lovely day out with friends at Colchester zoo. It was hard walking around but the smile on his face made it worthwhile.

Towards the end of my pregnancy I’ve planned activities for my son to go out with his grandparents. He had a week crash course in swimming with his Grandma, a Festival day with his granddad and next week he’s out with his nanny. This has enabled him to have fun and for me to rest a little. I’m so grateful for the supportive network I have around me.

When he went to the festival, my husband and I got to have a lovely childfree meal together. We also did some chores I was struggling to get done at home and although the house isn’t looking spotless, it does look so much better.

Some couples go on a baby moon (last holiday as a couple before baby arrived). I would like to have done this with my husband but we needed to use our time off work to cover the absence of childcare during school holidays and didn’t have enough days left for anything else. However, we were going to Centre Parcs when I found out I was pregnant so you could say we had a family moon (last holiday as a family before adding another child).

Bump pics

I have really struggled with this. Often I am so busy with Noah I forget about myself. I also feel huge, not well and tired which make me not in the mood to have my photo taken.

We tried a family day out at the beach and took pictures but my belly popped out in an unsightly way that made me look like Onslow from Keeping Up Appearances.

Fortunately, I finally got some pictures when I hit the 40 weeks milestone by simply taking some pics at home.

If you can afford a professional shoot then go for it. I did with my first and love the photos taken but the hidden costs made it way more expensive than I anticipated which is why I didn’t go for it this time. Click here for my tips on booking a shoot.

I hope you found my list useful. I’d love to hear what you did, for you, before baby arrived.

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3 Easy Activities for Kids at a Gender Reveal Party

Amazon let me down!  I ordered my party supplies and they arrived just as the party finished.  I didn’t let that ruin the day.  Oh no, I took to Pintrest and I got my sister to help me out with her Guide Leader experience.

I hadn’t wanted the party to be a big deal.  Just a get together with my best friends and immediate family so I could share our good news altogether.  Most importantly, I wanted the focus to be about Noah becoming a big brother.


Insta - food.png

I had some amazing idea boards on Pinterest and had fallen in love with the idea of a Mad Hatters tea party theme.  I ran out of time for that so had to come up with a new idea.

My table spread consisted of:

  • Healthy snacks – fruit (nectarines, raspberries, blackberries and blueberries) and vegetables for dips and snack cucumbers
  • Savoury snacks – cheese pizza, chicken nugget (with ketchup in egg cups) and crisps
  • Sweet snacks – selection of cakes and biscuits

The juice jug was a titled jug.  I used Mr Kipplings cakes as they are sealed (prevents kids poking them before they have committed to eating them).

The centre piece was a cake from Morrisons with a surprise center (multi coloured sweets) and I just added a ‘Girl or Boy?’ cake topper bought from Etsy.

By putting the healthy stuff at the front, the children were encouraged to eat the fruit and veg – it worked!  They were the first be eaten.


Insta - gender crafts

We had a number of activities for the kids in celebration of a new baby.  These were:

Little bean

You will need:

  • egg carton
  • soil
  • runner bean seeds

My sister brought soil, beans and an egg carton. She cut the carton up to make little pots for each of them to grow their own (runner) bean.  They put soil in their carton and planted their bean and watered it.

Baby face plates

You will need:

  • paper plates
  • a section of craft bits i..e pens, pencils, crayons, glue, fluffy balls, fuzzy bendy wires

My sister had brought a ‘one I made earlier’ plate for the children to see what they could achieve.  They then each had a paper plate and used pens, glue and fluffy bits and paper to decorate their plate and make a baby face.

Volcano – gender reveal

You will need:

  • a tray
  • a small bottle (i.e. Robinsons fruit shoot)
  • 1 cup bicarbonate of soda (baking soda in US)
  • 200ml vinegar
  • food colouring (pink/blue – depending on the gender)
  • measuring jug
  • measuring cups

The children really came to my rescue as they helped with an activity I had never done before.

  1. I added the secret ingredient before we started and secured the bottle (Robinson Fruit Shoot) to an old baking tray using masking tape.
  2. The children covered the bottle in play-doh to make a rainbow mountain volcano (and helped secure it further).
  3. We then used a 1/4 cup for measuring the bi-carbonate of soda to a measuring jug (this enabled them all to have a turn), then used the jug to pour this into the bottle.  Using a measuring jug made it easier to get into the neck of the bottle.
  4. We then added vinegar, carefully and slowly to reveal blue or pink.


Insta - cuddles

My little nephew was a star at the party as we were all in baby mode.  Everyone wanted a cuddle with him and he was a really good sport about being passed around.  The children listened carefully about supporting his head and were incredibly gentle with him.

I was really proud of all the kids. They really made this party awesome.

My room decorations and confetti cannon from Amazon did not arrive in time but I think the end result showed me that you don’t need those things to throw a good Gender Reveal party.

Ally plus text

Day 16 – Play

Give a child a box

There’s no greater toy

Let a child create

Their imagination brings joy

Never are they alone

With a made up friend

They can bring anything alive

With their bright inquisitive minds

Go and save your money

And let your child play

Let them get messy

Let them explore

There’s no need for plastic

Expensive and noisy

To make their own games

Your child has the resources

Give them a broom

They’ll be happy for hours


Day 16’s challenge

For Day 16 the challenge was to write a poem “that prominently features the idea of play. It could be a poem about a sport or game, a poem about people who play (or are playing a game), or even a poem in the form of the rules for a sport or game that you’ve just made up (sort of like Calvinball).”

When I first approached this task I thought of Peculiar Pets by Victoria Roberts. It’s a picture book about a little girl that wants a pet but her mum says “We’ll see” whenever she asks. The little girl creates pets out of bits and pieces around the home. It is a delightful read about a child’s imagination and creative play.

I thought about how parents spend a lot on toys, only for their child to be more fascinated by the box. For example, my son loves his cars. We’ve tried to engage him in other toys but he always returns to his Hot Wheels. The only toy that’s competed is his Kindle and balance bike. And in the summer I got a cheap broom from pound land to sweep the gravel back and my son found it and spent hours playing with it. It cost me £1!

I’m sure there are other parents that can relate to this poem. I’d love to hear your thoughts.