Happy New Year and OXO Tot Product Review

OXO Tot sent me these products for free but all opinions are my own.

Happy New Year everybody! 2015 was the year of maternity leave for me and this year will be my first as a working mum, both have their challenges, both are tiring and I intend to make the most of both!

Back in 2014 I decided to do monthly resolutions,  which was not a bad strategy even though I gave up pretty quickly. This year, my only resolution is to go to Pilates at least once a week but I still haven’t been this week! I really need to do some exercise and carrying A on the same side a lot has really really damaged my left shoulder so I need to sort it out!

Just before Christmas my friends at OXO tot sent me some new products to try, we still use their amazing bib every day so I can definitely say their products are of good quality. They sent us a training cup, a flip top snack cup and a training plate all in the same lovely green as the infamous bib!

 

Arabella was super excited about the cup straight away, I think she liked the idea of a “big girl” cup! It is definitely easy to hold and light so tips and is picked up easily. There is a translucent perforated removable lid that slows the flow of drink, however I think she is still too young because we went from this:

to it being tipped upside down and emptied on the floor in seconds 😦  I’m definitely keeping it for in a few months when she is a bit more under control! But she definitely likes it:

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I really like the design of the plate, it has a weighted non-slip base that makes it more stable. The ring can actually be removed later on for older children. The curved side helps them push the food up when using utensils.

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The plate doesn’t stick so of course the first time we used it, A quickly found the following it fun to pick up the plate and throw it on the floor…

However, we have since made progress, we used it tonight and she didn’t throw it on the floor! Success! It really looks nice and is more like what mummy and daddy use so little miss independent likes it a lot

Last but not least: the snack pot. I love it! I’ve gone from putting her biscuits and other snacks in a plastic bag and them getting crushed to using this, it now lives in the back of the buggy and is super handy.

I don’t use a changing bag anymore but this would easily fit in any bag.

Thanks again OXO Tot and don’t hesitate to check out their full range here: http://oxouk.com/s-149-Tot.aspx

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Working Mum Life Hacks

2 months ago I went back to work (I can’t believe I just typed that!). I thought maternity leave went by quickly, well working weeks go by even faster!

I thought I would share a few “life hacks” or tips for mums about to go back to work as a few changes here and there can really make your new life as a working mum easier!

  • My main advice would be: do not combine your first day back at work with the first day of childcare because you’ll spend all day worrying about your baby and if you’re like me, you’ll probably cry so will turn up looking a mess on your first day back! The other reason to start childcare before work is to have some time when you are neither working nor looking after your child, this is your last chance for some well-deserved “me time” for a while. Family holidays are lovely but nothing beats spending a weekday afternoon at a spa whilst everyone is at work and somebody else is picking up your baby’s lunch from the floor…
  • I’ve mentioned it before and I’ll mention it again, it’s really important to have a plan for emergency childcare. Indeed s*** happens, case in point: I’m writing this from a plane on my way to my first overnight work trip and was called earlier today by the nursery to go and pick up A as she has a temperature. Thankfully Mister B is looking after her but let’s just say calls like that 2 hours before you’re about to leave for the airport add to the stress…(then your plane is delayed and that’s when you really have to take a deep breath!)
  • Get your clothes and your child’s clothes ready every night. You don’t really want to have to think much in the morning!
  • Talking of clothes, I underestimated the effect nursery can have on children’s clothes, basically they get wrecked! So buy second hand or cheap clothes that can get stained or lost, without you being bothered about it. I now separate “nursery” clothes from “nice” clothes one.
  • I was really struggling with the whole week-night cooking thing despite being quite an organised person and doing online shopping. I just couldn’t plan far ahead enough and would lack motivation after the whole “train-nursery-home-bedtime” thing that I decided to do something before our diets suffered too much (and I started spending all my money at M and S at the station!). People, there is a solution and it’s called Hello Fresh. Every Sunday evening they deliver 3 meals worth of delicious food with very clear and easy recipe cards. Each meal takes between 20 and 40 mins to prepare. I don’t have to go food shopping, I don’t have to think of what to eat and in exchange we try new foods (pearl barley anyone?), learn new techniques and eat delicious healthy food Monday to Wednesday (Thursday is Chipotle Burrito day and I’m off on Fridays so have time). I love it! The second delivery was 90 mins late but their customer service was great so I’m sticking with it for now.
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  • Stay on top of washing during the week (a washing machine with a timer helps), you don’t want to spend all weekend doing washing and those dirty nursery clothes need washing asap!
  • If you can, get a cleaner! I’d rather not buy coffee than spend Saturday morning cleaning. It’s the best 20 pounds I spend every week, I’m convinced cleaners provide one of the best value for money services around.
  • Try and negotiate some kind of flexible working arrangement, part time or at least a day working from home, I have Fridays off and it keeps me sane!

All in all, 2 months later I am happy I’m working but wouldn’t want to be doing 5 days a week, all the little things above make our lives run smoother, I also happen to have a very helpful and tidy husband, which makes a massive difference. Behind every great working woman, there is a man, who cleans the kitchen every night and never leaves his stuff lying around!

What are your tips?