Spicy Carrot and Lentil Soup

Spicy Carrot and Lentil Soup.

Spicy Carrot and Lentil Soup. The best bit of the cold weather are the scrummy soups, casseroles and home comfort food. I love a big bowl of soup, and it’s a great thing to make in advance, freeze and take out for work or a meal when you’re super busy.

Spicy Carrot and Lentil Soup

What you will need:

600g Carrots, washed and grated
140g Split red lentils
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
1 Litre hot vegetable stock
2 Teaspoons Cumin Seeds
Pinch of  Chilli flakes
125ml Milk

Spicy Carrot And Lentil Soup
Heat a large saucepan and dry-fry the cumin seeds and chilli flakes for 1 min, or until they start to jump around the pan and start to smell yummy.

Spicy Carrot And Lentil Soup

Add the oil, carrot, lentils, stock and milk to the pan and bring to the boil. Simmer for 15 mins until the lentils have swollen and softened.

Whizz the soup with a stick blender or in a food processor until smooth, but can be left chunky if you prefer and serve with naan bread and a dollop of yoghurt.

Really easy to make and totally scrummy.

For all of our other tried and tested recipes, pop over to our Recipes Page.

Lisa

www.babynotincluded.co.uk 

#whatwedidthisweek – 13.02.17

#whatwedidthisweek – 13.02.17

It’s half-term and the alarm clock is set to OFF!

It doesn’t mean that we get a lie-in but it’s so much nicer  not waking up to the sound of the alarm and having to immediately jump out of bed and get ready. Non-alarm days or weekends we’re usually woken up by Isabelle climbing over us so it could be a misplaced arm, let or elbow that awakens us.

It was a great start to the week as the sun was shining, albeit it the wind was biting. Up we got at a leisurely pace and off we went to Wildwood Escot for a day of Creepy Crawly Welly Walking, walking in the woods and eating flapjack (which I’ve posted separately about).

#whatwedidthisweek

We were really lucky with the weather as the following day it poured down with rain so we headed off to soft play in Exmouth. If you’ve been to Exmouth before then you will know that when it’s cold – it’s flippin freezing there! Isabelle had a really lovely time. We bumped into several people from school including Isabelle’s teacher. It ended with the filling in of an accident form as Isabelle got herself a lovely slide burn on her back and her arm.

#whatwedidthisweek

 

We finished off that day with MacDonalds and a trip to a local farm shop where the Ostrich took a slightly liking to me and followed me backwards and forwards. I tested this theory by running up and down and it copied me. I only received a couple of odd looks.

Wednesday we had a lazy day at home and made cupcakes and Carrot and Lentil Soup.

#whatwedidthisweek

Thursday we met up with a dog walker friend who is hopefully going to have Charlie when we go on holiday in August. This will be first time that we’ve left him so I’m a bit nervous as I don’t want him to think that we’ve left him. He had to meet the other dog that will be there at the same time as him to make sure that they would get along. I knew that Charlie would be fine as he’s such a friendly boy. He’s never shown any aggression to any other dogs or people, and just loves to play so I knew that he would be fine.

Isabelle had a playdate with a friend in the afternoon so I had a bit of a catch up with sorting washing and a little bit of blogging.

Friday was another dodgy weather day so Isabelle invited one of her friends over to play. It was the first time that her room wasn’t turned upside down and inside out. They sat and played pony hairdressers.

On Saturday we went to the cinema to watch the Trolls movie which we hadn’t got round to watching due to illness/being busy. I gave her a choice of pic n mix or Ice cream, and she chose ice cream. She opted for a two scoop tub of Ben and Jerry’s ice cream. What flavour did she want? Phish Food, Caramel Chew, Double Chocolate Brownie? Nope she wanted vanilla. Really said the man serving. You just want vanilla? He tempted her into having one scoop of vanilla and one caramel honey.

The film was fab so we need to get it on DVD.

Today we went to Budleigh Salterton Beach with the pooch. The whole beach is just pebbles, no sand.

It’s really difficult to walk on pebbles as they move so running is almost impossible.

#whatwedidthisweek

Charlie wasn’t keen on the beach to start with, but I think it was because the waves were quite fierce and they make a lot of noise going back and forth over the pebbles. We walked down as far as the nudey beach, and thankfully there were no nudists for Isabelle to point at and laugh at (luckily for us).

#whatwedidthisweek

By the time we made it off the beach it felt like we were walking on fluffy clouds.

#whatwedidthisweek

It’s back to work for me tomorrow.

What have you been up to this week?

Lisa x

www.babynotincluded.co.uk

 

Sparkles & Stretchmarks Sunday Best

#VicksTricks for Coughs and Colds

#VicksTricks for Coughs and Colds

I feel like a bit of an expert on this topic as we’ve probably experienced the rough side of a cough and cold with our daughter more than the average mum and dad.

I say this not in a competing kind of way, but having Isabelle has changed so many things about what I used to believe was the ‘right way’ to look after a child.

#VicksTricks

Ryan was never a sickly child, slept and eat well.

We never avoided people with sniffles and were never really that phased when we turned up to nursery and yet another notice was on the door notifying of the latest illness going round.

Isabelle changed all of this.

We truly believe that you could sneeze across the road from Isabelle and she would catch a cold.

I hated it when I went to baby/toddler group and there were always children with coughs and colds as we knew that she would get them.

It irked me when family and friends would visit with a poorly child or ill themselves knowing that she would get it.

I can imaging you rolling your eyes at this point, but Isabelle never gets just a cough or cold. It was always to the extreme.

She would be poorly for days on end, none of us getting much sleep at night due to the crying, coughing and ultimately the projectile vomiting when she couldn’t control the cough.

Vicks Sickness Cycle infographic

She’s been given inhalers, antibiotics and steroids to help ease her symptoms mostly not helping at all. We know the signs a mile off by now so we know what’s in store for us.

So I pass on our baton of wisdom in all things ‘Cough and Cold’.

No milk. I know this one isn’t possible when little ones are little little, but milk is claggy in the throat and can sometimes promote coughing as it thickens the phlegm. Also milk sick is so gross smelling and a nightmare to get the smell out of carpets.

A nice calm bathtime routine. Adding a chamomile teabag into the water or a few drops of lavender oil to relax them and also open up their nasal passages.

No running. I know this sounds like a funny one, but Isabelle would have the most awful coughing fits if she had bursts of running around or being silly, so the run-up to bedtime has to be quiet play.

Open the windows – Even if its a freezing cold day. Open the windows during the day in your child’s bedroom to let some fresh air through. Alternatively you could get a dehumidifier.

Menthol vaporiser – We have a plug-in one that we got from boots which we put on about an hour  before Isabelle goes to bed.

Raising the mattress – When they have a cough and cold lying flat is not the best thing for them so put something underneath the mattress so that they are slightly raised. I also give Isabelle an extra pillow for the same reason.

Vick’s Vaporub – Don’t be shy go for the massive tub. We get through loads of this which we apply to Isabelles back and chest. We also read on a forum to put it on the bottom of her feet and leave her socks on so we did this as well.

Water – Make sure that your child always has access to water so that they can at least try to help themselves by having a drink during the night.

Isabelle can’t seem to control her breathing very well when she has  a cough and a cold and is quite often sick as a result of her panicking when she’s struggling. She now knows to get out of bed. If we can direct the sick away from the bed at least she can get back in without having to wait for the whole bed changing dance.

NEVER let them in your bed. We know only too well what happens when they’ve been sick in their own bed and thinking that it’s an easy option for them to climb in with you only results in nobody having anywhere to sleep!

We’ve also tried nasal sprays which she didn’t like at all so we keep them as a bit of a last resort to be used only with bribery.

Get some balm for their noses which get sore and red from all the nose wiping. It’s like a plaster, they love to have something to put on.

For coughs we give Isabelle ice lollies which she loves, but it also soothes her throat. If she’s not eating we can make them from fruit so that she’s at least getting some nutrition in her.

All the cough medicine that they are able to have. When things have been really bad we’ve been told by our doctor to give Isabelle an antihistamine so make her sleep.

During the day create a space where they can sleep if they want to. Isabelle won’t go to bed but if she’s comfortable she might at least close her eyes.

Have a selection of easy to play with toys. No jigsaws or complicated games which will end up in them getting ratty.

DVD’s or TV for them to watch. Whilst you don’t want them stuck in front of the TV all day some little one’s can’t seem to cope with much else.

Don’t expect them to sit and eat huge meals. When Isabelle is poorly she never wants to eat so we let her choose from a selection of things such as fruit, crackers, toast, yoghurts etc so that she can pick what she wants and is more likely to eat it.

Olbas oil on a flannel over the radiator and then dot a few drops around the room.

Honey and Lemon – Make them a cup of warm honey and lemon. Putting it in a fancy cup with a straw usually works for Isabelle.

Kids magazines always cheer Isabelle up. Isabelle’s favourite part is of course the toy on the front and it’s possibly the only time that she’s interested in the stories and activities inside the magazine as well.

Another good one is to be armed with an ipad or phone with some good kids apps. Isabelle is currently into kids youtube watching the unwrapping of ‘Blind Bags’. The voices totally drive me nuts but as each one only lasts about 4 – 6 minutes they’re tolerable in small doses.

We were sent ‘That Book’ – The Rabbit Who Wants to Fall Asleep. It was quite a long book and I’m sure that it might work on a child who stays in bed, lying down in bed and doesn’t talk all the way through, but it made me tired, and she did go to sleep quicker than usual.

We also received some finger puppets which at the moment have prime pillow space in Isabelle’s bed along with bunny.

 

We do all of this whilst trying to avoid the sneeze spray so that we don’t end up getting it ourselves. It NEVER works, one or both of us always comes down with it so make sure that you have a cupboard full of remedies for yourselves as well.  Chris seems to like the Vicks First Defence Nasal Spray whereas Ryan opts for the Nasal Stick.

This is my entry into the #VicksTricks Campaign.

Lisa

www.babynotincluded.co.uk 

 

#southwestdaysout – Wildwood Escot

#southwestdaysout – Wildwood Escot 

We used to be frequent visitors of Escot when Ryan was younger so it’s nice to be invited to take Isabelle, especially as she seems to quite like mud, walking in mud, squishing in mud, poking sticks in mud……..just mud.

We started off in the Anglo Saxon Village which was really cool. It was all set out as a proper village with a kitchen area, bedrooms, fire places and is used as part of the Camp Wild setting which offers holiday camps for children aged 7 – 12 years.

Wildwood Escot

This February half term they have Creepy Crawly Welly Walks running twice a day which are definitely worth going on. We had a lovely guide who showed us some rather strange looking dried animals and skulls. Isabelle didn’t seem phased by the flat squirrel or hedgehog.

Wildwood Escot

We stomped through the park to a pond where we dipped to see if we could find any creepy crawlies lurking underneath. We found some little ‘slug like’ bugs on the leaves and further on we found some frog spawn which Isabelle thought looked like snot.

You know the saying that you learn something new everyday?

Well at Wildwood Escot they have a deadly predator laying in waiting.

It doesn’t have claws, sharp teeth and it doesn’t growl.

It’s called Hemlock Water Dropwart and is poisonous if eaten.

We then took part in making mud creatures using mud, twigs, leaves and anything else that we could find on the ground.

Isabelle made a squirrel, a squirrel house with a fire outside the front and an antenna on the top for the TV.

It was amazing seeing all the other children using their imagination to make creatures including an alien and a fairy.

After the welly walk we went to explore the rest of the park. There are some amazing climbing trees with really gnarly intertwined branches.

It was a lovely sunny day but the wind was quite biting so unfortunately we didn’t see the squirrels, but we saw the Lynx being fed by the keeper. There was one at the back, and we finally spotted the other one which was hiding in the giant tree trunk in it’s enclosure. They really are beautiful. I could just imagine one curling up on your lap.

The Wild Boar were all foraging for food and some were outstretched in the sunlight.

We went over to the Death Slide and Isabelle was really up for having a go. That was until she reached the top and looked over the edge, and then we came back down again. Ha ha. I was totally going to show her how it’s done but I had to help her back down the steps!

I really wanted to go and watch the Otter feeding, as they’re really interesting. They obviously know exactly what time feeding time is as they were all by the door that the keeper comes in whining in unison, and running round as a group waiting for their food.

They were given a selection of food including turkey meatballs and cherry tomatoes which was thrown all around the enclosure so that they had to look for it. They work really fast at getting the food!

A hanging type basket filled with straw and bits of food was hung up so that they had to rummage through the straw to get the food. It was really funny to see them find something like they were dipping into a lucky dip, run over to the water to wash it before eating it.

We spent some time in the outdoor play area where there are plenty of things to climb on, and then had a go on the rope swing where I very nearly took out a child. Oops.

Wildwood Escot

We had coffee and usually cake but we opted for flapjack which was so yummy and chewy (big thumbs up).

We found a tree where there were loads of wine bottles hanging. We told Isabelle that that’s where the witches lived and that they hung the bottles on the branches when they finished the wine.

Wildwood Escot

There are loads of picnic tables or space to lay out a picnic around the park which is what we would usually do in the nicer weather.

Wildwood Escot is the place for you if you like being outdoors where the kids can explore, use their imagination and play.

Wolves are moving to Wildwood Escot shortly which we can’t wait to go and meet. Wildwood Escot is a registered charity and your admission is treated as a charitable donation. You can support this further by adopting an animal to help ensure that the animals are cared for an fed as they should be as well as keeping the park going for people to enjoy for years to come.

For more information pop over the Wildwood Escot Website.

#adoptananimalweek

Lisa

www.babynotincluded.co.uk

Wildwood Escot

#whatwedidthisweek 06.02.17

#whatwedidthisweek

After last weeks coughs and colds finally lifting, normality and routine has been restored.

As it’s half term next week this week has been a bit of a drain waiting for our week off.
We haven’t really done very much aside from the usual round of dog-walking, cooking, school run and all the usual housey stuff.

As Isabelle wasn’t at school for most of last week we had a surprise Valentines School disco sprung on us on Thursday. Isabelle had a great time. She made up dance routines with her friends and they’d made a pact to all wear pink! One of her friends broke the ‘rule’ so she was mad with her. So young yet so grown up.

It SNOWED! On Saturday. I tried to take a picture but it was so fine that you cant see it in the picture.

Isabelle went to her second session of Rainbows on Saturday which she seems to like so I think we’re going to sign her up properly. We have the magazine for the uniform which is awful. I can cope with the top and the zip up hoodie, but the wide legged jogging bottoms are awful, so I think we’ll get the tops but pair it with leggings.

#whatwedidthisweek
We also made these Aquabeads false nails which Isabelle really enjoyed making, but unfortunately they didn’t stay on for very long so some are missing, and I’m pretty sure that they dog might have eaten a couple as well.

Isabelle hasn’t been out on her bike for ages so we thought we’d go along the river and get an icecream (yep come rain or shine).

It was a disaster. She learnt to ride her bike in the summer but as she hasn’t been out on it for ages she was so nervous and wouldn’t let Chris let go of her so it was short lived, and we didn’t get anywhere near the quay to get icecream.

We’ve spent the rest of today in the warm playing and watching TV whilst the boys are out at football.

The best bit is knowing that for the next week our lives won’t be dominated by the morning alarm clock.

Lisa

www.babynotincluded.co.uk

#southwestdaysout – February Half Term

#southwestdaysout – February Half Term

February Half Term

It feels like we’ve only just got back into the swing of things following Christmas, and yet another school holiday is just around the corner.

I’m really hoping that the weather is on our side as we have a couple of outside trips to go on. Worse case scenario we go armed with wellies, raincoats and umbrella’s. Sometimes you’ve just got to go for it.

Here are some of the things that have made our ears prick up:

February Half Term

1. Wildwood Escot – Adopt an Animal Week

This is a great place to take the kids. All week they have animal talks including Otters and Red Squirrels.
What’s on this week? Creepy Crawly Welly Walks, pond dipping and making animal dens as well as all the usual outdoor fun.
Adult £9.50
Children £8.00 (Under 3’s FREE)

February Half Term

2. Crealy – Devon

What’s not to love about Crealy. There’s loads of stuff to do for all ages outside if the weather is nice, and if not you can hunch up with all the other mums and dads in the indoor play area and let the kids let off some steam. Meet the animals including Goats, Ponies, Monkeys and Meerkats. During half-term they’re running competitions for a chance to Win prizes totalling £5000 over the week. You can also camp, glamp or stay in a lodge in Crealy Meadows.
Adults £6.95
Children £6.95 (Under 92cm FREE)

February Half Term

3. The Donkey Sanctuary 

Named as one of the ‘Top Ten Family Day’s Out in Devon’. This is a lovely place to take the kids where you can meet the donkey’s and stay for a grooming session along with talks about the work that they do (which is amazing). They have a maze and an outdoor play area, and I hear that the food is absolutely delicious.
Adults FREE
Children FREE

February Half Term

4. Cofton Holiday Park

They are offering a Dip and Dine offer with swimming, sauna and steam (adults only) and food in Amelia’s where they serve a selection of hot and cold food. We’ve done this before where we’ve had a swim and then a cooked breakfast which was lovely.
Adults £9.00
Children £6.00

February Half Term

5. Pennywell Farm VIP February 

To launch the season’s opening, if you visit during 11th – 19th February you will be given a return ticket to visit as many times as you like during half-term. Take the little ones along for animal feeding, egg collecting, pond dipping, ferret racing and miniature pig racing. If you visit on 11th or 17th February Poco Drom will be playing which is always a treat.
Adults £14.95
Children £10.95

February Half Term

6. The Bear Trail 

A brand new adventure trail for kids and adults alike. The trail is for all ages and has a range of bridges, zip wires, stepping stones and ropes. If you’re kids like mud (who doesn’t) then this is great fun. Booking is advised.
Over 1 Metre £6.50
Under 1 Metre £3.50

February Half Term

7. The Royal Albert Memorial Museum (RAMM)

There are loads of workshops during half-term week including animation workshops, Family Collage making and a Chinese Trail. Most of these are drop-in sessions but pop over the to website to check to avoid disappointment.
Adults FREE
Children FREE

February Half Term

8. Prickly Ball Farm

I’ve been meaning to take Isabelle here for a while now. Not only do they have lots of hedgehogs that have been rescued, but they have other animals such as goats, pigs and ponies. Get involved with feeding and petting the animals. This February entry is only £5.00 (including half-term).
Adults £5.00
Children £5.00 (Under 3’s FREE)

February Half Term

9. Living Coasts – Beside the Seaside

During February Half Term they are having a Beside the Seaside theme including a Shipwrek Train, a Beachside Scene, Puppet Shoes, Mac the Penguin, daily Animal talks and more.
Adults £12.20
Children £9.15 (Under 3’s FREE)

February Half Term

10. Paignton Zoo 

Who doesn’t love a trip to the zoo! As well as all the Fab animals, this February Half Term celebrates the launch of Cold-blooded Creatures 2017.  There will be special talks, trails, Cuba the Croc mascot appearances and more!
Adults £15.40
Children £11.55 (Under 3’s FREE)

There are also lots of FREE things to do in the South West such as taking advantage of the many beaches. We love going to beach outside of summer time to find unusual things in the rock pools, and collect shells and pebbles . Put your wellies on, grab a bucket and a net and off you go.

Here are the Top 10 Beaches according to Visit South Devon.

Bantham Beach
Beer Beach
Bigbury on Sea
Blackpool Sands
Dawlish Warren
East Portlemouth
Hope Cove Beach
Sandy Bay in Exmouth
Slapton Sands and Torcross
Teignmouth

Lisa

www.babynotincluded.co.uk

 

White Chocolate & Strawberry Cheesecake Cups

White Chocolate & Strawberry Cheesecake Cups

Strawberry Cheesecake Cups

What’s better than a recipe that you don’t have to cook. I’m pretty sure that I don’t know anybody who doesn’t like cheesecake or if I do they haven’t mentioned it. What’s not to like, Yummy creamy topping on an even yummier biscuity base (which if you’re the one serving you get to have extra – servers rights) and fruit. Fab combination!

What you will need:

For the filling

150g White Chocolate
25g Butter
1/2 Teaspoon vanilla extract
200g Cream Cheese
25g Icing Sugar
50mls Double cream, whipped
1 Punnet Strawberries

For the base:

Half a pack digestive biscuits
50g Butter, melted

For the base, put the biscuits in a freezer bag and using a rolling pin crush the biscuits. Add the crushed biscuits to the melted butter.

Strawberry Cheesecake Cups

Put 12 cupcakes cases into a cupcake tray and add a spoonful of biscuit base to each case. Put into the fridge to chill whilst you prepare the topping.

Strawberry Cheesecake Cups

Melt the white chocolate, butter and vanilla extract in a heatproof bowl over a pan of simmering water. Making sure that the bowl doesn’t touch the water. Once all the ingredients are melted, take off the heat and stir to make a smooth mixture and set aside to cool.

Strawberry Cheesecake Cups

In another bowl add the cream cheese, icing sugar (sifted) and cream until smooth.

Add the chocolate mixture to the cream cheese mixture.

Strawberry Cheesecake Cups

Take about half the punnet of strawberries, wash and chop off the tops and cut into very small pieces before adding them to the cream cheese mixture.

Strawberry Cheesecake Cups

Top the biscuit base cases with the cream cheese mixture and put in the fridge for approximately 4 hours. Top each cheesecake cup with a quartered strawberry and serve.

And there you have lovely little scrummy White Chocolate & Strawberry Cheesecake Cups.

Strawberry Cheesecake Cups

Enjoy!

Lisa

www.babynotincluded.co.uk 

Bidvine – Local Helping Hands!

Have you heard of Bidvine ?

•This is a collaborative post.

Bidvine is a great online service for finding professional help in all aspects of your life, from a plumber to a personal trainer.  There are over 800 services available covering the whole of the UK. 

Bidvine

The site which is also available as a mobile app is simple to use. When you first go to the site,  you simply put in the service that you are looking for along with your postcode. You are then asked some very simple questions so that you can be matched to the most relevant people in your area. 

Bidvine

I thought that I would test this by searching for  Pet Boarding as we’re going away later in the year so will be looking for somebody to look after our lovely Charlie. 

These are the questions that we were asked. 

How many pets require boarding? 1 

What type of pets do you have?  Dog 

How long is the required boarding period? A week 

Do you require any related services?

Making sure they’re fed
Grooming services
Administering medication
I’m not sure
Other

Where can the service be delivered?

The service pro travels to me

I travel to the service pro up to: This is where you add in the miles that you are willing to travel for the services. 

When do you need Pet Boarding?

There is a drop down menu asking on the timescale which you can choose from being urgent to requesting a specific date which is what we would chose for Pet Boarding. 

Anything else the Pet Boarding Service Provider needs to know?

You can add in any additional details or requirements if needed. 

How would you like to receive bids? 

You can opt to have a phone call with offers or text messages

Then the request is submitted. 

This works on the basis that the Bidvine database will match you with  professionals offering all sorts of services matching  your requirements. You will then be contacted either by  phone call or text with offers which you can accept or reject. 

I was contacted within 20 minutes of submitting my request which I thought was amazingly quick.

This is really simple to do, and you can sign up for a Bidvine account by logging in with your Facebook or google account or by creating one using your email and a password. 

I’ve had a good old poke around the site, and there’s all sorts of services on there including Flat Pack Furniture Assembling to Stress Management Coaching. It’s really simple to do and using the app, can be used with ease as and when things crop up. 

What’s better is that most of us like to use people who have been recommended, so for any jobs that are completed you will be asked to review the services, and in turn you can read other peoples reviews which will help you make the right choice for whatever you choose. 

I’ve downloaded the App as it’s always handy to have in case of an emergency. I have a list of odd jobs as long (actually longer than) my arm which try as he might, Chris just isn’t Bob the Builder! 

Bidvine

Lisa

www.babynotincluded.co.uk 

#whatwedidthisweek 30.01.17

#whatwedidthisweek

This is one of those weeks where we haven’t really done a lot.

Both kids have been really poorly with coughs and colds. Daddy is the one that has bore the brunt of their illness whilst I’ve been out at work, and then in proper tag-team style he’s gone off to work and I’ve taken over.

We received a lovely goodie bag from Vicks with some great tips videos which I will share with you in another post, but the timing couldn’t have been better.

I did try to cheer her up by making one of her toucanBox boxes which worked long enough for her to make me these cool eyebrows.

??
Isabelle really suffers from coughs and colds, but unfortunately when she’s poorly she doesn’t deal with it very well, so we all suffer from sleep depravation and your ears start to ring with the sound of her whinging. I know she can’t help it, but she really will sit there coughing and spluttering waiting for you to hand her a drink or a tissue, or pull up her blanket which she really could do for herself.

She has an alter-ego when she’s poorly called Feeble Mable.

Feeble Mable has legs made of jelly

She sits with her clothy and watches the telly

She sips from her cup and nibbles on snacks

This terrible cold has stopped her in her tracks

She has little red cheeks and hair stuck to her face

It really is sad to see her in this place

Finally Feeble Mable starts to fade away and our little Belle Boo comes back out to play

Ha ha that’s the extent of my poetic skills. We’re putting Isabelle’s quick recovery down to Benylin Children’s Night Cough mixture which she can take (it’s 6+). Usually the worst part of her cough is the nights when she can’t seem to control the coughing and then struggles to breath which then leads to her being sick. The last time she coated me from head to toe in sick. Nice.

#whatwedidthisweek

Yesterday I was able to get out with Charlie (the dog) for a really lovely long walk. The river was totally wild and some of the path was missing, but Charlie loved being able to run around in all the mud and puddles. I love being out with him, it seems to help de-stress me and it’s a nice kind of walk where I’m not rushing to or from something, just walking.

I then went on to make White Chocolate and Strawberry Cheesecake Cups (recipe to follow) which I thought Isabelle would want to help me make, but she decided that she would much rather play YouTube that make cheesecake.

The weather was awful this morning so we had to think of something to do with Isabelle that was indoors but not our indoors as she hasn’t been out since Tuesday we thought it would be nice to actually leave the house. Our options were bowling, but after checking the extortionate prices we decided against this, indoor climbing (fully booked), cinema or soft play. I’d quite like to take her to watch Sing but she opted for Bearfeet indoor play area with one of her friends so that’s what we did.

Did you do anything nice this week?

Lisa

www.babynotincluded.co.uk 

 

Sparkles & Stretchmarks Sunday Best

5 Ways to Make Some Extra Money in 2017

5 Ways to Make Some Extra Money in 2017

*This is a sponsored post

Whether you spent way too much at Christmas or your New Year’s resolution is to be more sensible with your finances, making some extra money wherever possible will be extremely beneficial.

Not everyone is lucky enough to bring in a monthly salary that allows them to live a care-free life, so saving and finding ways to profit by other means is an ideal way to stay financially afloat in 2017.

5 Ways To Make Money in 2017

 

You may be surprised to find that there are many ways of making some extra cash here and there — some of which are already right under your nose. From renting rooms and parking spaces to selling jewellery for cash, let’s take a look at five ways for you to earn some extra money this year.

  1. Sell Your Junk via Online Marketplaces

If you’re someone who tends to be a little bit rubbish at throwing things away — which, let’s face it, most of us are — you could be making a decent profit from old things you have no use for. Online marketplaces like eBay and Gumtree are an absolute goldmine to find some cheap deals, and therefore as a seller, items you have in good enough condition to sell will be worth something to someone.

While you may not make a fortune from each item individually, you’ll soon accumulate a tidy sum if you manage to sell enough of your old stuff. Anything that you own and no longer have a use for is worth putting up for sale online. You never know who’s out there looking for some cheap furniture for their new flat, or for some reason have taken a shine to the cuckoo clock that you received from a barmy relative.

  1. Recycle Old Mobile Phones

A new model of iPhone and various Androids are released every year, and many people feel the need to have the new model as soon as it comes out, leaving behind a large number of relatively new phones that become unused. If you are one of these people and you’ve struggled to sell your old phone or haven’t bothered to sell it at all, you should think about recycling it.

There are a bunch of sites that offer cash for old mobiles, and if you have a fairly recent model to trade in, you could come away with £200-£300. That type of money would go a long way to paying off monthly bills or be a nice little addition to your savings.

  1. Sell Old Jewellery

Jewellery is one of those belongings that people seem to hoard, often without even realising how big their stash has become. Selling jewellery can be a tricky task, as without a proper appraisal, you’ll be unsure whether you’re getting a good deal or not. This could well be the reason why your pile of treasures has continued to grow.

If you’re selling jewellery and are looking for a way to get them appraised before money changes hands, seeking out a cash for gold company is a good way to have a precious metals expert take a look at what you’ve got and give you a quote. It’s worth doing a bit of homework, because the higher-quality companies have a price match scheme and will match any company that offers you more.

Postal gold services are a really great way of selling jewellery for cash, especially if you don’t have much time on your hands and want a quick and easy process. They’ll send you an insured, first-class envelope, so all you have to do is put your items in and send it off. You’ll usually get a quote within 24 hours. Simple!

  1. Rent Out Your Parking Space

A lot of houses and flats these days will come with an assigned parking space, but many of these spaces remain unused by people who don’t drive or do not own a car. If this is the case and you live in a city where parking is expensive or scarce, renting out your parking space could prove to be a straightforward and efficient way of making money.

If you live in a big city like London, people will be coming far and wide for all different reasons. One prime example is football fans heading to the city to watch a game. They will have already spent a hefty amount on tickets, fuel and potentially overnight accommodation, so a cheap parking space in the city would be an ideal way to save money.

  1. Rent Out a Spare Room/Airbnb

If you have a spare bedroom that currently has the purpose of being a dumping ground for old junk, a walk-in wardrobe, or makeshift man cave, you’re wasting an opportunity to gain a bit of extra income.

Having a clear-out and putting together a basic spare bedroom won’t cost you much at all, and the potential it will then have to bring in a hefty sum while charging rent is too good to pass up.

Another option is Airbnb, a site that allows you to rent out your living space to people who are planning a visit to your town or city. This can be especially profitable if you happen to live in an area that’s more popular with tourists — and you can even rent out your garden or nearby land for campers to pitch their tents.

Although money isn’t the be all and end all of life, if you ask a room full of people who would like to be earning more money, you would get a room full of raised hands. Finding ways to make some extra cash, whether it’s through selling jewellery and old belongings or renting out a living space, will prove to be extremely useful for relieving some of the stress of bills or other future endeavours.

Lisa

www.babynotincluded.co.uk