Sunday, 26 February 2017

Getting rid of the bottles & baby formula

Getting rid of the bottle and transitioning from formula can be a challenge and so I like to do it as soon as possible. I feel like the younger they are, the easier it is but it isn't recommended you stop formula before one year.

We gave Aria breastmilk/formula up until a year but this week we have switched to almond milk. She didn't do well on regular formula, so she was on a soya formula & that's why we chose almond milk over cows milk, but you can use a handy formula feeding guide to see which would suit your baby best if you are still formula feeding.

We started this transition with her last week and so far, it has gone well.

Getting rid of the bottles & baby formula

 We did the transition gradually, we started off by swapping just one of her bottles from formula to almond milk to allow her to taste it. She didn't take to it straight away but we kept offering it and she would taste it at least. We kept it in a bottle as to not introduce too many 'new' things at once, although she did already take water from a sippy cup really well and had done since around 4/5 months.

Once she was familiar with the taste of almond milk, we gradually cut down formula and upped the almond milk until she was drinking only almond milk and no formula but still in bottles. Once she liked the almond milk & was drinking it with no problems, we then started to cut out bottles.

Again, we did this gradually. I started with just giving her almond milk in a sippy cup at lunch time and still letting her have her morning and night time bottle, but gradually we cut out bottles all together. She hasn't had a bottle now since last Sunday and it has been way easier than I thought!

Wednesday, 22 February 2017

A first birthday Princess tea party!

You may have noticed it was Aria's birthday on Friday 17th February! I have gone a bit overboard with the videos but I also wanted to share some photos as they do the decor more justice (I also forgot to show the finished look in the video!)

I spent ages looking on Pinterest trying to find a theme I liked but in the end, I just went for pink and girly and I used inspiration from a few different pins and looks I found. I find first birthdays harder because they can't really say what they want or what they really like.

I was looking for some 'backdrop' inspiration & I found a few people had done a collage wall with photos of the baby throughout the year, but in the shape of a '1'. As soon as I saw it, I kept being drawn to it so decided to go with it & ordered some prints. That was the main focus of the wall & then I decided to go for princess and girly banners and accents to accessorise it.

I added a tiara to the top of it to add some sparkly & make it more girly. These are meant to be tiaras worn on the head with ribbon (from Party pieces) but I just removed the ribbon & I think it worked so well! I then added the pink & white bunting underneath & used some pink & white tulle pom poms (both from Party pieces too) along the table.. this was mainly to disguise the ugly radiator but it worked as a nice backdrop for the cake too!

We had an array of sweet treats.. jammie dodgers, mallows, party rings, biscuits, pink smarties.. all to stick with the girly theme! We also had pink milk & I got the idea for the 'marshmallow pops' on Pinterest too! The Princess cups & plates were also from Party pieces.

Tuesday, 21 February 2017

How to take the hassle out of making a home insurance claim

With any luck, you will never have to make a home insurance claim. However, it’s impossible to predict the future, and in the event that something unfortunate happens, such as a flood, fire or burglary, you’ll have enough to worry about without fretting over whether or not your claim will go through. So, to ensure you’re prepared to deal with this process without any unnecessary hassle, keep reading.

Use an independent insurance broker

You can purchase home insurance directly from insurers. However, instead of approaching these companies, you might want to consider using an independent insurance broker. There are a whole host of benefits associated with using these companies. For example, independent insurance brokers Forum Insurance offer policies that can be tailored to meet your specific requirements and budget, meaning you can rest assured that you’re suitably covered.

Brokers are also adept at making the claims process simple and stress-free, meaning they can take the difficulty out of what might otherwise be a long and complex process. Also, opting to use a broker instead of signing up directly with an insurance company could mean you’re able to benefit from a more personalised, reassuring service when you find yourself in a tricky situation. 

Update your details when your circumstances change
Failing to update your policy is an insurance faux pas you’re going to want to avoid. While having cover in place is extremely important, your home insurance policy might not be as effective as you’d like if your details aren’t being kept up-to-date when your circumstances change. Whether you make an expensive purchase, upgrade your alarm system or carry out any home renovations, you should update your policy details in line with these changes to make sure that you’re suitably covered, and to ensure your policy is valid. In turn, this will make for a smoother process should you need to put in a claim.

Saturday, 18 February 2017

Money Blunders You Need To Avoid

It goes without saying that you need to be pretty good with money when you’re the head of your household. The way you handle your finances will have a huge influence on how comfortable your home life is, how well you can support your children in the future, and how quickly you reach your personal goals. If you’ve never been that good with money and want to turn things around, here are some big mistakes you need to avoid…

Paying Down Debt with Savings
As I’m sure you know from experience, it’s way easier to withdraw money than it is to part with it! It’s simple enough to break into your savings in order to pay down your debt, but rebuilding those savings can be a mountain of a task. With the dark cloud of debt hanging over your head, I’m sure that taking out savings just to get rid of it may seem pretty appealing. You may not feel the sting immediately if you go ahead with this plan, but believe me, a few years down the line, you’ll regret it! Automating your debt payments from your paycheque, or simply being more disciplined with them, is always the better option.
Making Bad Investments
One of the most common ways that people hurt the state of their personal finances is making bad investments. For example, if you were to borrow money in order to pay for a car, you’ve pumped a fair amount of capital into a depreciating asset. The car is going to lose its value over time, and you’ll never fully recover the money you put into it. Sometimes bad investments are much more straightforward and subtle, and can only be recovered through something like a PPI claim. Whatever form they come in, bad investments need to be avoided like the plague! With every big investment you consider, take some time to think about whether or not you really need it, and whether your financial condition allows handling the loan with ease. If it’s absolutely necessary,  in the case of a car or a roof over your head, then you can still help yourself by weighing up your options and choosing the most cost-effective one.

Friday, 17 February 2017

Updates for your Spring wardrobe

It’s official, spring is on its way! Christmas is now a distant memory, and the days are finally getting longer. Before we know it, we’ll be welcoming warmer climes and looking forward to getting out into the garden. If you’re a follower of fashion or your wardrobe is in serious need of a revamp, the arrival of a new season is an ideal time to refresh your look. You don’t have to go wild in the aisles or fill your virtual basket to the rafters. If you’re on a budget, here are some simple ways to update your wardrobe in perfect time for spring.

Modify your palette
In the autumn and winter months, we tend to opt for darker colours and rich shades like black, navy, grey, red and burgundy. As spring creeps ever closer, it’s time to refresh your palette and lighten things up a bit. Pastels always work well in the warmer months, and white is a great option if you have a phobia of brighter tones. If sorbet shades don’t flatter your skin tone, add coloured accessories and accents rather than investing in coloured tops, dresses or jackets. Green was a big hit on the catwalks, and you can choose from a huge range of shades. Go for vivid tones if you’re feeling brave or khaki for a more subtle look.

Switch up your accessories
If you’re bored of layering up and spending half an hour putting hats, scarves, and gloves on before you leave the house, spring brings good news. The warmer weather is a perfect excuse to invest in some new accessories to give your daytime and evening looks that extra lift. If you’re heading out for the night, swap patent clutch bags and matching stilettos for a nude bag and heels, and add some jewels. If you’ve got a very simple top, go for a beaded collar or some statement drop earrings. If you’ve got a printed or patterned top or dress, keep your jewellery very simple. A pair of stud earrings, a plain bangle, or a couple of palladium rings will finish your look off perfectly. Brooches are also an excellent option if you’re looking for something understated to complete a vintage-style outfit.

Recommendations by Engageya