3 Reasons To Keep Your Supermarket Rose Plants

Today on my blog I am talking about those gorgeous mini rose bush plants you can buy them in your local supermarket. You can usually get one for around £3-£5 for a plant, sometimes they come in a pretty little pot as well. When choosing one, go for one with a nice thick and healthy main stem and with buds that are still yet to open and flower.

The Supermarket Rose is a beautiful gift for someone who just to brighten up your windowsill. I have had two yellow roses and a pink rose in the last two years. You can often find them in Red, Peach and even a pale White shade of Rose petals. Supermarkets usually stock a wide range of colours, I like Yellow as I feel it brightens up a room.

So many people toss their little Rose bushes into the bin when they finish flowering. One reason for this is because they see the label which often reads “Guaranteed to Flower for 14 days” and they presume that after this flowering rose is finished blooming then the plant is now obsolete, and that is so wrong! Did you know that with a little love and care you can make your little Rose last for months or even years? And they will flower again!

Well in this blog post I am going to tell you just how and why you should keep them. Here are my main 3 Reasons…

Reason 1. They can survive inside or outside! I will go into how you would care for each in a moment.

Reason 2. You sometimes get extra growth of the original plant after a couple of months, and some plants can be re-potted into more than one Rose bush. Then you could keep one for yourself and gift away the other if you like!

Reason 3. Looking after plants during difficult and uncertain times can help your mental health by giving you something to care for and focus on. It will also produce flowers several times a year to brighten up your home.

Keeping Your Rose Inside or Outside

Inside
A nice regular sized pot and a windowsill with half sun and half shade, your Rose bush should thrive here. Water it every day, keeping the soil damp and remove dead leaves and dead flowers to prolong its growth. Leave it inside the pot it comes in until all the flowers have finished, and then you can re-pot it into something prettier if you’d like, pop a few stones at the base to allow for drainage and if you’re increasing the pot size to allow for growth use some moisture controlling compost.

Check the plant if and when you re-pot it. You may find it has two separate stems and roots systems, if that is the case you can do as I did above (image) and pot in two pots and then you’ll end up with two plants.

Outside
A pot of any size because the bush will grow into it. But in order to be liveable outside and to survive the Winter you must do two things. One, is to line the pot with a sheet of bubble wrap plastic, this is to keep the roots safe from any frost. And two, you also need to put a few stones in the base and place the plant into some moisture controlling compost, which will retain water so as to keep the plant nourished. You must water it regularly in warm weather and do not let the pot dry out.

So far my Pink Outdoor Supermarket Rose is coming up to its third year in a pot outside. I got lots of flowers on it in June, I also gave it some flower food once the flowers began to show their buds. As you can see I had some rich new green leaves grow this summer. I may need to re-pot it into a larger pot next summer if it grows again.


I hope you have enjoyed reading this blog post, please let me know if you’d like to see more like this, such as gardening related or tips on making the most of supermarket purchases.

Thanks for visiting Severn Wishes today.

✩ Sabrina ✩

A Delicious Casserole Recipe the whole Family will enjoy

My Delicious Red Wine Casserole Recipe is a winner for the whole family to enjoy. And it’s got plenty of vegetables in it too, with a rich red wine gravy sauce.

You can have a tasty dinner in 3 hours, with a 30 minutes preparation time and a 2.5 hour cooking time. Easy to do and leave in the oven while you do something else! It is a very handy recipe to have when you have to help your children with homework this Autumn.

I will do my ingredients list as if you were serving 4 people. I do this meal for my son and I, and it then reheats well the next day when stored in a fridge once it has cooled from the original cooking. I do it in a Pyrex Casserole Dish with a lid, and it can then be cooked and stored easily.

Ingredients

Vegetables
4 Carrots (1 Medium Carrot per person) – finely diced is best.
2 or 3 Large White Onions (at least half a large onion per person) – finely diced or small pieces.
1 Tin of Chopped Tomatoes 400g (Make sure to add some warm water to the tin, add this in to the dish in order to create your liquid for your stock).
(Optional) Mushrooms – Small Washed Button Mushrooms are best.

Accompaniment / Side

Long Grain Rice prepared per person.
1 Tin of New Potatoes 600g (serves 4 people) This can be added to the Casserole and they will cook during the time frame.
500g Mashed Potato prepared during the final half an hour of cooking.

Meat / Vegetarian Alternative

300g – 500g of Casserole Meat of your Choice – I use Beef or Chicken or Quorn – all of which go really well with the Red Wine Sauce.
Plain Flour for Coating the Meat (Contains: Wheat)

Sauce
Tesco Red Wine Stock Pot – 1 for a 4 person Casserole. (Contains: Sulphites)

Tesco Stock Pot Red Wine Packaging 4 x 28g

Method

1. Start by preparing your meat, it will require 2 hours or up to 2.5 hours of cooking time. Mix your cut up raw meat with some plain flour in a bowl. You want bite size pieces and all coated in flour. Then you want to fry these off in a tiny bit of oil until sealed but not overcooked, you don’t want the meat to go dry.

2. Next you need to prepare your vegetables. Dice and Fry your Onions after you finish with the Meat/Veg Option. Dice with a knife or throw them all into a food processor to chop them up, it won’t matter to the end result, but you don’t want too big pieces. Don’t cook the Carrots, there is so need, you just want to chop and add them to the casserole dish, they will cook in the stock.

3. Speaking of Stock, that is your next thing, pop your chopped tomatoes in the dish, add water to the tin, and then add that to your dish. You need to add the stock pot, mix thoroughly.

4. Add the rest of whatever you have, vegetables, fried onions, sealed meat, mix together in the stock and then pop the lid on. Preheat your oven and cook at 160 degrees (fan oven) for 2 hours. Check and stir the casserole at that point and then pop it back in the oven for another 30 minutes. (You can do your mashed potato or rice during this half an hour if you didn’t add potatoes to the dish).

5. Be careful when you remove it from the oven as it will be very hot. Serve in bowls with your chosen accompaniment, and enjoy!

Thank you for reading this Recipe post today, I hope you will give this one a go if you can find the stock pots. I love Tesco own products and I love to shout about something if it’s an excellent product, and these most definitely are! They are affordable and allow you to make something that is both delicious and healthy. Please let me know in the comments below if you do this recipe and how it turns out! I hope you like it!

Have a wonderful day!

✩ Sabrina ✩

Jakago Portfolio Folder and Tablet Bag Product Review

Today I am reviewing an item that I purchased a few months ago now, it has been thoroughly tested and I am so pleased with its quality that I wanted to tell you all about it. Plus, it’s so pretty isn’t it? Review time!

The item was from Amazon UK, and it has the title of Jakago Portable Portfolio Carrying Case. It is designed for people who want to carry their tablet, stationery and notepads together all in one convenient bag.

I bought this particular bag because I had wanted a folder to keep my Microsoft Surface inside. An easy way to transport it around my home and to keep it safely hidden away from my toddler when not in use. What swayed me to buy this one was the pretty design on the cover, the fact that it was the correct size for my uses, the cover is waterproof and it was available for a quick delivery.

This excellent quality folder has many various sized pockets, both inside and out, and the cover is beautifully designed. Not only is it waterproof outside but it is misleading on size too. I measured my Surface and found the measurements to fit. I can get it inside the folder, zipped up, and still have more room for other small items inside. Plus there is the zip compartment on the outside at the back, and a slide in pocket on the front.

There is more than enough room for those who just have a tablet, you can carry a variety of stationery inside plus A4 and A5 notepads. There is a nifty pocket with a zip inside the folder, which is ideal for memory sticks or things of that size. As you can see from my image below, the folder has a variety of slide-in pockets that divide the portfolio up so things do not rub together inside.

Product Name on Amazon: JAKAGO Portable Portfolio Smart Folder A4 Folio Waterproof Document Organiser Passport iPad Carrying Cases Conference Folder with Zip and Handles for Travel Meeting Business Office Holiday (Flower)
Product Details: Ideal for Carrying a variety of Stationery, Tablets and other Technology, with unique features such as a waterproof casing and many pockets inside ideal for organisation.
Size: 13.8 H x 9.8 L x 1.2 W inches , overall size is an A4 Letter, can store an iPad, Pens, Paperback Book, Mobile Phone, Tablets such as Samsung, Kindle etc
Material: This travel portfolio case sleeve use waterproof fabric, portable and durable, which well protects items inside from damage.
Product Price: £18.99 (Correct of June 22nd 2020)
Product Website: LINK

There are 10 different variations of this bag currently available. They include block colours like Purple, Pink, Green, Orange, Navy Blue, and designs like Leaves and Flowers. There would be something to suit everyone. They logo with the bicycle situated on the front of the bag says “Small Size Large Capacity” Multi-functional File Bag.

Overall I would rate this bag as 5/5. For it’s Quality and Design I didn’t mind paying the price, its cost outset the convenience and unique features.

Price 5/5
Quality of Product 5/5
Product Design 5/5
Features 5/5
Ease of Use 5/5

Thank you for reading this product review today. I hope you have enjoyed reading about this excellent file bag.

Have a lovely rest of your day, and thank you for visiting Severn Wishes.

✩ Sabrina ✩

Trollbeads Together Apart Rainbow Bead Review

I was lucky to have won a Trollbeads bracelet back in 2016 it came just as it was, a gorgeous and intricate twisted bracelet with unique clover lock and spacer bead. I bought a single bead for it which was a clear one, very iridescent in the light. In 2018 I was gifted an Orchid Flower bead by my Father and Step Mother which I also added to it. I love my bracelet, it is so well made with quality throughout its design.

When I had an email a couple of weeks ago from Trollbeads saying they were releasing a special bead, and it would feature Rainbow and money would be going to charity too, I knew I wanted one to add to my bracelet.

Rainbows mean a lot to me and my family, my son is a Rainbow Baby. It has become a symbol of hope during this pandemic and is now more important than ever to so many people.

Here is the beautiful Together Apart bead on my clover bracelet.

The bead features a Rainbow colours design with clouds attached to the centre sphere and outer smoothness of the bead. It is beautiful and unique looking. I’m so glad I managed to get one because they are limited edition, and the first batch sold out within a couple of hours of their launch.

It is a beautiful bead, very well made and such stunning bright colours. As you can see on my photograph above mine is extra unique as it has a single bubble in the centre too. I am happy I purchased one, it really brightens up my bracelet and I love to wear it alongside my other two beads.

Overall I am very happy I bought this bead, and I am happy I have donated to charity while having something to enjoy for my lifetime. Trollbeads UK are excellent in both quality and service, I highly recommend them. Because their glass beads are so unique you get something extra special in my opinion, they are not mass produced like some other jewellery and bead companies. And these Limited Edition ones are usually even more amazing.

So back to the charity donation part, Trollbeads are giving £4 from every bead sold, so technically the bead costs you just £36 when you minus your donation. The £4 will be donated to the Charity “NHS CHARITIES TOGETHER”. They are supporting NHS staff, the volunteers and the patients who have been impacted by COVID-19 all across the United Kingdom. If you buy a bead and accompanying bracelet for £120 they are donating £12 from that to the charity.

Click the website banner below to head on over to the Trollbeads website if you’d like to purchase one for yourself. (If they have any left! Keep an eye on their website and social media for updates as I think they were making some more).

From The Trollbeads Website – Description of the Together Apart Bead

Together Apart Bead £40

  • Weight: 1.95 g
  • Main Material: Glass

We will get through this together. 

The bead has two rainbows and two clouds.

This is a Limited Edition release. Limited Editions are rare or unique beads which are only released in very small quantities.

Each glass bead is handmade from red-hot glass over an open flame and no two glass beads are ever completely alike. This goes for size, colouration & pattern. Your bead is absolutely unique and will have slight variations from the bead pictured.

Trollbeads Website

Thank you for reading this Review today, I hope you have enjoyed reading it. Have a lovely week.

✩ Sabrina ✩

The Woodland Gift Company Rainbow Flower Earrings Review

I recently made a purchase from The Woodland Gift Company, who I have been following on Facebook for quite some time. I have chosen to support small businesses where possible during this difficult time. Plus they had some gorgeous earrings! I was looking for something Rainbow related, but when I saw these I just fell in love with them.

The stunning Rainbow Coloured Sterling Silver Flowers really stand out. They are beautiful and good quality.

They arrived in lovely packaging and the little extra additions of the string and the paper rose, it just made the experience extra special.

Overall I would say I’m very happy with my purchase, the service was 5 star and the delivery was good too despite the current restrictions. I would definitely purchase from the company again after this good experience.

The earrings are unique, excellent quality with the 925 silver mark on the back. They are lightweight and the perfect size for my ears. They don’t get in the way of my gradual lobe piercings (which I thought they might). I would highly recommend them. And The Woodland Gift Company are giving some money to charity for every pair purchased as well.

If you would like to see more from this company you can find their stock and choices on their website The Woodland Gift Company
And if you’d like to follow them on social media then here is their Facebook
The Link to these particular Earrings can be found here

Thank you for reading this review today, I hope you have enjoyed it. If you would like to see more Rainbow related products click the tab category Rainbow on my home page. Have a lovely day!

✩ Sabrina ✩

Paper, Lace and Love Wooden Decorative Rainbow Review

Paper, Lace and Love Wooden Decorative Rainbow Review

Paper, Lace and Love is a company that I have admired for many years. I first discovered it on Facebook and I made several purchases for friends and also for my godson, a special framed Christening gift. Everything I ordered was beautiful, the paper cuts were great quality and presented in an excellent way too.

It had been a while since my last purchase but I had been admiring their new works from afar. During Lockdown with all this terrible virus problem affecting the world, Paper, Lace and Love have been hard at work designing and creating brand new wooden designs, so that people could hang them up in their homes. Not only are these excellent quality and made to such a high standard, they are also unique, and help to bring some hope and cheer back to people across the world who have been lucky enough to buy one.

I was one of those lucky enough to purchase one of their limited edition Rainbow pieces. Because my son is a Rainbow baby, the idea of the Rainbow has been at the forefront of my mind for years now. I always wanted to find something that I could display at home, that I loved enough for it to represent what he means to me and the struggle I had to get him.

I always said I would have Rainbows decorating my house, and when PL&L made this particular design, I knew it was the one for me. Here is one of my photographs of it, just look at all the beautiful details and the craftsmanship. The quote is easy to read and the glitter in the Rainbow really make its colours stand out.

I love positive quotes regarding Rainbows, my favourite one is this, “When it Rains look for Rainbows, When it’s Dark look for Stars”. There is also “You have to survive the storm in order to find the Rainbow”. Both are very true to my life. My son loves to find stars, moons and rainbows, usually in his books but also on television and when we go out and about.

Now when we take a little stroll around our street some afternoons we see lots of Rainbows in peoples windows due to the pandemic. But what I want him to know is that he is my shining light and my Rainbow of Hope, he was the incredible product from what was a very dark time in my life… Rainbows will always be important to us, all the more so now.

Overall I would highly rate the service I have received when ordering from PL&L and I would recommend them to friends and family and practically anyone. If you want well made, unique pieces to treasure forever, then this is the place to find them.

I have chosen to support some small British Businesses during this Pandemic Lockdown. This item was purchased by me with my own money and this review is my own and totally honest opinion.

Paper, Lace and Love and all their incredible works of art can be found here at the following places. Some are limited editions and only a certain number will be made, so it is best to follow them on social media for regular updates.

Paper, Lace and Love Website HERE
Paper, Lace and Love Facebook page HERE

Thank you for joining me for this review today, I hope you have enjoyed it.

Have a lovely bank holiday weekend! I’m off to bake some cookies!

✩ Sabrina ✩

Gardeners Dream Purchase Review

Freshly potted and watered.

Gardeners Dream Purchase Review

I ordered some Strawberry plants from a website online, the company was called Gardeners Dream Ltd. A friend of mine recommended them to me. They had a wide range of things to choose from and I browsed at length. That day I was only looking to purchase one thing though, that was Strawberry Plants.

My son adores this fruit and I thought why not invest in some plants that I can keep in pots and they can give us fruit every summer (when looked after appropriately of course).

They send the dried plants in the post in a few days, I even had free delivery which was an added bonus for me. Each time you choose an item you receive 5 plants. I chose two different types of Strawberry plants, but those with larger fruits and hardy plants against disease and bugs.

Due to lockdown they took a few days to arrive but I didn’t mind. They were well packaged and I followed the instructions that the website had given me. I saved them on to my phone when I chose which I wanted to buy.

After I had soaked them overnight in lukewarm water they were ready for planting. I once again followed the websites instructions for this as well. Ensuring I planted up to a certain part of the plants.

Within days they were revitalised, green leaves began to grow, it was with the help of all the compost and soil I had prepared before getting them. They looked healthy in the compost (that I luckily had in the garage because I couldn’t get any from anywhere right now if I needed some!) but I still gave them a little plant food as well when I watered them well for the first few days.

Now they look very healthy and have tripled in size, growing lots of fresh new leaves as well, as you can see in my image below.

Overall my experience using Gardeners Dream has been a good one and I would recommend their service, their plant advice and their website as a whole to anyone looking to grow their own this summer.

Baring in mind that it’s too late to plant some things now because I did these in early April and some things require planting even earlier in the year. But they also do other plants and flowering ones too if you’re looking to brighten up an area of your garden this year.

Here is the link to the Gardeners Dream website if you wanted to take a browse for yourself.

Here is the direct link to what Strawberry Plants they have for sale on their website.

Thanks for visiting my blog today, have a lovely evening!

✩ Sabrina ✩

Review of Cloud and Moon Children’s Night Light from Lights 4 Fun

Today I am reviewing a product that I purchased for my sons bedroom. I really liked a number of lights available on the Lights 4 Fun website, but I wanted something fairly small and battery operated, which narrowed down my search parameters.

I initially wanted a night light so that I didn’t disturb him by clicking a switch. This battery powered night light features an on and off switch on the back, plus a very handy timer. The timer allows the light to stay on for 6 hours, and this was what swayed me into purchasing it, purely its convenience.

I really like the design and the painted finish look, it was neat and tidy and well made for the price. I chose to leave it on a table near his cot, the light pointed towards the wall to illuminate the corner of the bedroom. It was very bright for the first couple of uses, the first 36 hours it was almost so bright that I turned it away from him. But after that time and for the following three weeks we have had it, the light emanating from the Moon has been exactly the right strength and brightness. The battery is beginning to go now as the light is dim but still bright enough that I can see my son in the night.

I would highly recommend the company Lights 4 Fun, for both the quantity and range of their stock, there are some great choices to suit every kind of person. They are good quality and well made. What I bought was delivered well packaged and in a good time with regular delivery updates too. I would use them again in the future.

Product Name: Cloud & Moon Children’s Night Light
Product Information: Battery Powered, Timer of 6 hours, 12 Warm White LED Lights, made from Wood, the Design is Grey and White painted in colour. This can be Wall Mounted or Stood on a Flat Surface. Ideal for Children’s Bedroom as a Night Light due to its timed feature, it is for indoor use and has an illumination time of approximately 100 hours.
Product Dimensions: (H) 23 cm x (W) 30 cm x (D) 2.5 cm
Batteries Required: AAA x 2 (not included)
Product Price: £12.99
Link to the Product: Lights 4 Fun Website

My Review Scores

Quality of Product 5/5
Product Design 5/5
Product Features 5/5
Ease of Use 5/5

Thank you for reading this review today, if you’d like to know anymore about the item or see more images of it in use then please check out my social media such as Instagram. Alternatively click the product link I provided above to go to the Lights 4 Fun website.

✩ Sabrina ✩

Summer Outfit Shopping Challenge 2019

Can I buy a Summer outfit for £20 or less including footwear and an accessory?

I set myself a blogging challenge for the start of this summer, get an outfit or a few for a set price, including footwear and an accessory too! What I mean is buying items that can be paired in different ways to create multiple outfits. This post will explain what I bought and why, and I will also review score the items individually as well.

Primark Dolly Shoes

Why I Set Myself A Shopping Challenge

So I had my first ever trip to the Horse Racing for a Hen Weekend in June… I had a great time! I came home with £47 profit and I decided to treat myself with it. As a mum I don’t get to go out much and I certainly don’t spend very much on myself anymore. Until I went on this shopping trip that I’m about to describe to you it had been almost two years since I had been shopping for clothes that weren’t for a special occasion, or Maternity clothes or Breastfeeding Essentials. It was time to browse and get something that I liked or loved and to try something and not feel guilty about it.
Everyone needs a treat once in a while don’t they?!

So I was talking to my best friend about setting myself a challenge that I could explain here on the blog. I concluded that if I popped another £3 on to my winnings I then had £50 to spend. With her opinions on items I picked out I decided to do this challenge, I allocated the money to my two favourite high street stores. I gave £20 for Dorothy Perkins and £30 for Primark.

My Challenge… Could I get an outfit for £20? Yes I could! In fact I got the equivalent of 3 outfits from Primark & 1 from DP! All for £50! Here is how!
By mixing and matching the various items that I bought I was able to make several outfits from them.

While shopping in Primark what I found was a mixture of full price (FP) items and sale items (S). My Dorothy Perkins outfit was complied of all sale items and then I would simply include jeans that I already owned from DP to finish the look, I did not include these in the final price because I already had them.

Primark Yellow Accessories

1. The Summer Shirt Outfit – A Garden BBQ or Day at the Beach – Primark – Worth £20 Total

Wear this shirt with either leggings on a cool day or a pair of shorts. Leave it untucked and long in length or tucked in for two entirely different looks. Pair with Dolly Shoes, Flip Flops or even Boots. You can wear something beneath the shirt if you want to, like this vest.

Blue Striped Summer Shirt £10.00 FP
Black Leggings £4.50 FP
Dolly Shoes in Yellow £3.50 FP
Hair Scunchie Tie £2.00 FP

2. The Practical Outfit – Day Out With Family – Dorothy Perkins – Worth £20 Total

Pair this gorgeous Rust coloured duo with black jeans or black jeggings and some dark accessories for a great transition to Autumn look. If you want to wear this shirt in summer it works great in an evening with jeans and heels too. The pretty buttons and pocket details really make the shirt stand out.

Rust Coloured Shirt S £12.00
Rust Ankle Boots S £8.00

Rust Coloured Duo of Shirt and Boots from DP

3. Every Day Summer Outfit For Home Or Casual Outings – Primark – Worth £21 Total

Who doesn’t love a practical pair of shorts that go well with almost everything? Well this dark green pair look great with a vest, t-shirt or even a short shirt. Pair with various shoes depending on the weather and also where you plan on going to.

Cargo Shorts £12.00 FP
T-Shirt or Vest £3.00 FP
Dolly Shoes £3.50 FP
Hair Scrunchie Tie £2.50 FP

Cargo Shorts with Vest with Yellow Accessories for a Hot Summer Day

4. Hot Weather Day Out or At Home Having Fun In The Garden – Primark – Worth £21.50 Total

Using the shorts once again for this combination but based more casually, dolly shoes for walking about and a vest with a shirt for casual but comfortable wearing.

Cargo Shorts £12.00 FP
Vest £3.00 FP
White Shirt £3.00 S
Dolly Shoes £3.50 FP

Cargo Shorts, White Arrow Shirt with Blue Dolly Shoes

Final Primark Purchases, Prices & Scores – Total Spend of £44.00

Striped Blue Shirt £10.00 –  –  – Score 4/5
Green Cargo Shorts £12.00 –  –  – Score 4/5
Green Vest £3.00 –  –  – Score 4/5
Blue Dolly Shoes £3.50 –  –  – Score 5/5
White Arrows Shirt £3.00 –  –  – Score 3/5
Blue Striped Vest £3.50 –  –  – Score 5/5
Yellow Dolly Shoes £3.50 –  –  – Score 5/5
Hair Band and Scrunchie £2.50 –  –  – Score 5/5
T-Shirt £3.00 –  –  – Score 4/5

Final Dorothy Perkins Purchases, Prices & Scores – Total Spend £20.00

Rust Shirt with Linen £12.00 –  –  – Score 5/5 LINK
Rust Wide Fit ‘Mayfair’ Ankle Boots £8.00 –  –  – Score 5/5 LINK

So I went over my budget very slightly, however the combinations that I have achieved with the clothing and accessories that I bought make it justifiable. Overall the items that I decided to purchase have had added uses because they were either useful, like the shirts I use for breastfeeding during the warmer months, or that the pieces were investments for the next few years (hopefully!) such as all of the shoes.

The previous Dolly Shoes that I bought in Primark were from 2016 and 2017 and they are only just beginning to wear out. I hope these new ones last me just as long! It’s also nice to grab the colours in season when you see them available. A few years ago I had metallic colours from Primark and I never saw them again! I still have a Rose Gold pair I keep for special occasions.

The Boots I got from Dorothy Perkins were an investment for many Autumnal days to come, because at £8 in the sale you cannot beat that kind of a bargain! Especially ones that fit well and are comfortable.

Primark vests are items I wear every single day as a breastfeeding mama bear. So grabbing a couple of these was essential to my shopping trip. (Now that we are currently having a heatwave in the UK I’m even more grateful to have gotten them!).

Primark Items:

Quality of Fabrics 4/5 – The fabric quality was mixed, the vests in Primark are always good, the shorts were thick and strong. The shirts were relatively thin and creased easily. The Shirt is 86% Cotton and 14% Linen.

Designs 4/5 – I thought the items that I chose all had design merits. The shirts were nicely designed with their patterns. The shoes were simply designed by great colours for Summer. I loved the shorts with multiple pockets and the scrunchie hair tie was such a pretty mix of both pattern and colours.

Cost Price 4/5 – Overall I felt most items were affordable for their price and function, the shorts were great quality for their price and the dolly shoes I find are always good quality but very affordable.

Value for Money – 4/5 – I think that Primark items are usually good value for money, some more than others but generally you get what you pay for. I have washed and worn the vests multiple times and they still look good.

Dorothy Perkins Items:

Quality of Items – 5/5 – I was very impressed with the quality of the shirt and the boot that I have purchased. The shirt isn’t thin and is well made, and the shoes look well stitched and are well presented with no marks.

Designs – 5/5 – I love the Rust shade that DP has chosen for some items this Season. Additionally the shirt has a lovely shape to it and is rather flattering when worn. The Boots are comfortable and were available in Wide Fit which is a design bonus. The heels aren’t too high and are wedged to allow comfortable wearing.

Cost Price – 5/5 – I wouldn’t have considered purchasing either of these items unless they had been in the sale already. Their original prices were Boots £35.00 and the Shirt £22. I am very lucky to have gotten them so cheap with a saving of £37.00!

Value for Money – 5/5 – For the amount of money that I have paid for these things I am more than happy to give the value for money spent a 5/5.

Overall I’m very happy with my shopping purchases. It’s also been a couple of weeks now and I have worn the shirts several times, I’ve also worn the vests multiple times and they have been washed and worn repeatedly in this lovely warm weather. I haven’t needed to wear the Dolly Shoes yet but they are an investment for when my current two pairs give up the ghost so to speak! I’m still happy with every piece that I bought, I guess you could say it’s been money well spent! I look forward to wearing the rest of the items over the warm summer weeks…

Here are a couple of images of me wearing some of the new items…

Rust Shirt (Left) & White Arrows Shirt (Right)
Blue Striped Shirt and Yellow Scrunchie Hair Tie

Thank you for reading this blog post today, I hope you’ve enjoyed it. Have you gotten any retail bargains lately? Have a great time if you’re off out for some retail therapy!

Sabrina

Our Weaning Journey

Our Weaning journey began delicately due to our son having suspected allergies. He is exclusively breastfed and he cluster fed for the first 5 months of his life. He was born slightly premature at 37 + 5 and after having bad jaundice at birth, it took him many weeks to recover. We spent so much time in hospital at the start that our first month with him went by in a blur. Problems with allergies began at around 12 weeks, so it was a steep learning curve in the next 10 to 12 weeks that followed.

Then, when it came to Baby A reaching the 6 month milestone he was still in size 3-6 month clothing and breast feeding up to 14 times in 24 hours. We hoped that Weaning would satisfy him more so and because we could introduce cooled boiled water with his meals, it would take a bit of pressure off me. This did work, but he had such an appetite that he continued regular breastfeeding including a minimum of two feeds a night, plus day times and extra weaning snacks. We had ourselves one hungry baby!

I recall the health visitor questioning how much I was feeding him at our 6 month visit… she couldn’t believe how much I was saying he ate, I’m almost sure she thought I was lying. I had read in a parenting book that you cannot over feed a baby, because they will simply refuse to eat it. Our son wanted more and more food as the days went by, so I used motherly instincts and I watched my baby for cues. So I continued on with my busy breastfeeding schedule plus I began our weaning journey in a rather swift fashion.

We Tried A Range Of 4 Month Plus Puree, These Are A Few Of Them Little One Loved.

Baby A enjoyed many things that we tried first off, including individual vegetables such as Carrot, Potato, Parsnip, Sweet Potato, Apple and Strawberry. There were only 2 things he spat out which were Prune and Peas. And I don’t blame him for either! Ha!

After doing some reading and noticing how keen Baby A was with eating and being fed, we decided to do 6 weeks of Purées to start with. We maintained that he was to ingest nothing dairy of course, I checked packaging meticulously or I made my own. This worked well, starting with a few mouthfuls twice a day for the first week, followed by doubling the amount in subsequent weeks. By the time we got to week 6 Baby A was eating 70g of fruit purée for breakfast and 70g of vegetable purée in the early evening. He also tried Melty Puffs around this time too.

Prices of Purée vary, but they usually cost anything from 40p all the way up to £1.50. They also range in size so look out for that. We made the most of any offers that were on in supermarkets and also used any store credit points and vouchers we had picked up to get our initial 6 week stash of purée.
Boots vouchers can go a long way if you sign up to the Clubcard and baby club before hand. Keep a look out on social media for offers too.

Minced Beef and Onions with Mashed Potato (7M)

He was enjoying the food we were giving him and he was obviously hungry. We were approaching his 8 month mark when we began moving to thicker purées and food with more textures. I was bulk cooking mashed vegetables at this point and freezing them in small pots (roughly 80g each). Some combinations included Potato and Carrot, Carrot and Swede, Carrot and Parsnip and Parsnip and Sweet Potato.

At 8 months Baby A was eating between 70g and 100g for breakfast, between 100g and 130g for his lunch and between 130g and 150g of food in the evening. This was on top of 12 breast feeds still most days, and we had began to try him on some more snacks. The melty puff kind that melted on his tongue were a real hit! Luckily they came in many flavours.

We also gave him fruit such as Raspberries, Strawberries and Melon as an evening pudding if he was feeling particularly hungry.

Minced Pork and Onions with Carrot and Potato Mash (8M)

Baby A ate most things from Day Dot but turned his nose up at the taste of Cucumber and also highly disliked the taste of Peppers. Some foods took a couple of times before he decided that he liked them, usually very strong tasting food groups. He was unsure about things like Tomato, Scrambled Eggs and Pasta, but we persevered and he eats them now. The trick is to leave a food for 2-3 weeks then try it with them again.

One thing I loved about Weaning was the way he learned and every day you saw him remember. Within two weeks he understood that cutlery went into his mouth, he began to chew even when food was super soft, and he was also cutting several teeth while we were trying most new foods. He did so well with all these milestone changes and I’m very proud of him.

Mashed Carrot and Swede with a Small Chicken Steak and some Rice (9M)

One thing I would recommend to mum’s who want to cook healthy meals for their little ones is to invest in a good strong vegetable mash utensil and a mini food processor. Mine is called the Russel Hobbs Mini Food Processor 22220 Mini Chopper and I cannot rate it high enough! It was used every day for 3 months and I still use it to dice up chewy meat because it saves me so much time. I still use it for my now one year old boy.

Russel Hobbs Mini Chopper In Use

At nine months Baby A began eating some more of the food I prepared for us adults. This includes the meat and sauce of bolognese but we gave him mashed vegetables and not much pasta. He ate my cottage pie (all of it), we had chicken steaks that I had diced in a blender with soft vegetables and rice, sausages were diced and served with mash and veg, and he even ate flaky white fish with rice and veg too!

I also used a weaning book that my mother had bought for me that had some great ideas inside for weaning recipes and snacks. I altered most of them to suit the various allergies in my family of course. Homemade Veggie Nuggets were by far my favourite thing to make, I bulked cooked them which was time consuming but then they’re frozen for convenience.

Minced Beef and Onions, Carrot and Swede Mashed with a Homemade Veggie Nugget

By the time he reached 10 months of age Baby A had 8 teeth and was eating 80% of what we were. He still loves his baby related snacks too! These include Vegetable Puffs, Rice Cakes and Flavoured Shaped Corn Snacks. A lot of these are Organic too.

Some Of The Baby And Toddler Snacks We Buy Regularly.
A Few Of The Pouches We Tried And Tested From 7 Months Plus

These snacks are very affordable from places like Aldi who have their Mamia range. If you sign up to Ella’s Kitchen on their website they will send you a pack and a voucher to try bits from their range which are purchasable at most large supermarkets and Boots stores.

Our little one loves to feed himself firm snacks but has been more than happy for us to feed him things that require a spoon such as fruit purée, cottage pie, mashed vegetables and the like. It’s so important to get your little one to eat their fruit and veg, and it doesn’t matter if you have to create a mashed version in order for them to eat it. Try different combinations and see what your baby likes. Keep a food diary to keep track!

Some of the 7 month snacks are little one loves.

Sabrina’s Weaning Tips For Parents

My top 4 tips for any parents about to wean a baby would be these…

1. Take it slowly and calmly. Your Baby will be intrigued but it can also be a stressful experience for all of you. All healthy Baby’s generally have a good gag reflex and don’t confuse this for choking, stay calm if they cough or spit things out and take all foods – even the purées – at a slow pace!

2. Start with Veg! You don’t want your little one to have too many sweet flavours in those first weeks, this is because when it comes to the savory kind they are less likely to want it. Start with Veg Purée or Mash and go from there…

3. If you plan on doing Baby Lead Weaning, then you must let your little one use their hands. Be prepared for mess! Get a good highchair, get a mat for the floor and keep plenty of baby wipes at hand too!

4. Keep a Food Diary! This is a useful tip for all new parents. It’s a great way to keep track of what baby has eaten, if your little one was to have a rash or reaction to anything they had eaten you can go back and check the diary before trying the substance again. Those first couple of months are critical in preparing baby for stronger tastes and good food habits, so start them early on the main products that your household enjoys together and move forward from there.



All Parents Should Definitely Sign Up To…

1. Ella’s Kitchen via the Website
You get a free pack in the post with tips, a board with stickers, ideas for foods and even some vouchers for baby snacks.

2. Boots Parenting Club
Using your Boots Advantage Card on the Boots App or Website you can add the addition of the Parenting Club which gives you bonus deals, free products and vouchers every month. For example we got a free bottle, a free weaning book and some promotions on nappies and baby food. Check the app each month for new promotions and deals. You also get extra points on your card when purchasing certain products in store and online too.

Ella’s Kitchen Have A Great Website and Their Melty Puffs Are A Real Hit!

✩ Russel Hobbs Mini Chopper Review ✩

I would highly recommend this chopper to any parents who want to make a lot of their own food for their baby. Not only is it simple to use, easy to clean and maintain, but it allows you to make just enough food for a large portion that can be good for a day, or if you’re bulk cooking into baby sized pots it made 6 pots of food no problem. The best thing about this mini processor is it’s size, it takes up very little room in my cupboard and is portable enough to take away for a weekend to a relatives house without being a burden.

Design 5/5
Features 5/5
Value for Money 5/5

RRP £16.00

Joie High Chair Review

We highly recommend the Joie High Chair because it is affordable and also has some great features. These include the large sturdy tray, the beautiful animal design on the seat itself and the large fabric basket underneath which is great for storing extra bits and pieces close by for when you need them, such as bibs, wipes and toys.
We only have one suggestion, that the straps could either be entirely removable for cleaning purposes or that they be a different colour than white, because they really show up every bit of food dirt.

Design 5/5
Features 4/5
Value for Money 5/5

RRP £55.00

Munchkin Products Review

We have been really impressed by the Munchkin Apple Bowls and Plates, as well as their range of Spoons too.
We picked most of them up at various baby events in Supermarkets and on Amazon UK. They are affordable and well made.
They are designed for different stages of Weaning and further interactions with food, ranging from 4 months right up until Toddler ages.
Our son found the spoons easy to eat off and the divider apple plates are a great idea when trying different foods at meal times. Or for separating the meal and the dessert when you get to that stage.

Designs 5/5
Features 5/5
Value for Money 5/5

Thank you for reading this post today, I hope you have found it interesting. If you try any of the products that I have recommended then please let me know in the comments below if your little one liked it.

If you have any questions about any of the products I have mentioned then feel free to also comment and ask me anything, I will do my best to answer you honestly.

Sabrina