Let’s talk about that taboo topic Headlice 

I’ve gone back and forth over whether to right this post, mainly because of the stigma that can surround the subject. Then I thought don’t be daft, it’s not talking about such things that create that stigma.

So in going to start with saying;

“My names Katy and my kids have had Nits”.

Not just once either, I’d say between them one of them have come home from nursery or school with unwanted visitors about once a year.

Considering my kids have been in some form of schooling for ten years now I consider myself at bit of a pro at getting rid of the little blighters (that’s the Nits not the kids)!

Now that the kids have started back at school it’s time to be on high alert again for those little visitors. I thought that now would be a good time to dispel some of the myths surrounding Headlice and share how I have successfully treated my kids hair.

  • Only dirty children get Nits. This is not the case at all. A Nit doesn’t care whether you child is clean or dirty. All they are interested in the warm cosy climate and source of food your child’s scalp and barnet provides.
  • Only girls with long hair get Nits. Nope sorry mums of boy’s this is not true. It’s just a lot easier when it comes to treating a boy’s head than a girl with loads of hair.
  • Only kids get Nit’s Oh if only this were true! Think about it though all thoughs cuddles with your kiddies mean contact and the perfect oportunity for passing on an infestation. Yup I’ve had em as an adult thanks to being a mum. Glamorous!! So don’t forget to check your hair also.
  • Nits can jump – Thankfully this is not true, could you imagine though if it was? Headlines can only actually be passed on by direct contact.

Some of those myths dispelled, here’s how I have learnt to deal with headlice.

  • I have got in to the habit of checking my kids hair once a week for any signs of a Nit problem. Spotting a potential case early is half the battle.
  • There are loads of different formulas available for treating nits. I have found what works best though for us is the traditional old school style leave in lotion. I have always used Hedrin 4% Lotion £11.50.

 

image credit hedrin.co.uk

This is what Hedrin say about the product and how it’s active ingredient Dimeticone works.

Head lice have a unique strategy of water management. Instead of producing urine they eliminate excess water via tiny passages in their exoskeleton called spiracles. The active ingredient Dimeticone, a silicone oil, disrupts this process of water management by coating the lice, causing them to become permanently immobile, and blocking the spiracles preventing them from getting rid of excess water. As a result, any lice that have recently fed suffer from death by gut rupture and, the ones that haven’t, die of starvation.

The reasons that I like this lotion, apart from the fact that it works are that it has no horrible smell and is kind to the skin.

It is worth bearing in mind that you MUST repeat the treatment 7 days after the first application so that you break the Headlice life cycle. This treatment will not kill the eggs.

  • I like to also go through the kids hair with a comb. I use the Nitty Gritty comb. Priced at £8.99 it is more expense than other combs but it is the best comb available.  

This was developed by mums who know how hard it is to treat headlice. The comb has been lazer cut from durable metal so that it removed all lice and eggs. Even those live eggs I talked about earlier.

I find it helps to use the comb after washing the hair and using a detangling spray.

  • Use a tea trea oil shampoo and conditioner. Vosene Kids £2.49 is  developed especially for kids and contains natural Headlice repellents tea tree oil and lemon eucalyptus,  sometimes prevention is better than cure.
  • Wash bedding on a hotwash as eggs can survive on pillows etc. if hatched this means they could find there way back.
  • Tell the school if you do find you have an outbreak at home. They will let other parents know so that they can check their kids hair. If your worried about the stigma attached don’t worry the school don’t name who has it.

So that is how I have learnt to effectively treat headlice after having had to deal with it my fair share of times.

Personally I think we would have less of a problem in our schools if the Nit nurse was brought back to school for regular checks, this is what happened when I was a child and I don’t recall cases of headlice being so common. That is a whole debate for another occasion though.

Have you any tips or tricks for treating headlice?
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Mummy Monday – Parental advisory recommended 

I had one of those moments the other day when I didn’t know quite what to say. What do you say when you child comes out with something they really shouldn’t?

My 11 year old son was happily playing on the Xbox when he came out with “I’ve just tea bagged you”.

What??? my husband and I just looked at each other with a “did I just hear that right?” 

We calmly asked him to repeat what he had said, er yes that is exactly what he said. 
Oh dear me, what do you say to that? I know for a fact we certainly have never come out with that around him, where did he get it from from? 

We explained to him that he really shouldn’t be saying that phrase without explaining what it actually meant (we asked him if he new what it meant and he said no). There was no way I was expaibing that one. 

Where do you draw the line though? When I was a kid that would have been a standard bar of soap in the mouth moment. I have to confess aswell that even though it shocked us we couldn’t help laughing out of earshot. That is the last thing I expected my child to come out with. 

The question the whole incident has raised though is how do you deal with indesirable language? I don’t want to draw attention to it, but in the same breath I don’t want to run the risk of him coming out with it at school. 

For now we have explained to him that what he said refers to something very rude, but I really don’t want to explain to him what it actually means. My thoughts are drawn between should we explaining to him why it is something he shouldn’t be coming out with i.e. Do you explain what it actually means, or just tell him don’t say that it’s rude? 

My instinct tells me I want to keep him as innocent for as long as possible, however he is starting secondary school in a few days and I know that innocence is limited. 

For now I feel I have a set standard that I can enforce but how do I extend that beyond the home? Is it naive of me to think that I can? I don’t know? I would like to think that I could encourage my children to refrain from such language but who knows  what they get up to when you are not around. 

I don’t think it helps that the boundaries with which films are  rated are no where near as strict as they used to be. What is now a 12 certainly wouldn’t have passed as that when I was a kid. 

Right now I’m settling for setting clear boundaries of what language is exceptable in the home and what isn’t. I know there is going to come a time when that won’t be so easy. 

How do you deal with bad language? Do you ignore it or would you explain to your child why they shouldn’t be saying it? Help a shocked mummy out here, please! 

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Your Never too Old to Learn something new

I was scrolling through my Facebook feed the other day and came across a picture of a lady in her 80’s having a go at throwing a pot. I didn’t look to closely at first but just noticed that the lady  in the photograph really looked like my Nan. Only on closer inspection I realised it was indeed my Nan. My auntie had shared the picture and captioned it ‘never too old to try something new’. Everything about that picture had me going ‘wow’, It was inspiring. 

There have been so many times when I have doubted my capabilities and thought that I had missed my chance in life. 

I think we look back at our days at school and think that what we achieved there is set in stone and cannot be improved upon. I didn’t go to university but straight out into the world of work. It wasn’t a great Job either, I took a waitressing job as a temporary position, till something better came along. Shortly after this though I fell pregnant with my Daughter so any career hopes were put on hold. I was to have 3 children by the time I was 25, my life was dedicated to being a Mum and just taking Jobs that fitted around the kids and my husbands career. 

I’d be lieing if I said I was completely happy with how my life had panned out. There were times when I absolutely resented my husband for the fact that he had achieved  what he wanted out of life. I often felt that I was the one making the sacrifices and he was living his dreams. Actually though he just had the get up and go to push himself to achieve his goals. He said he was going to complete a Triathlon, and guess what he did it not just once but so far he has completed four. 


Really the only person holding me back was myself. It was about breaking that mentality that I had missed out on opportunities. I have   done a lot of soul searching in the past few years and finally realised this. 

So far I have enrolled with Open University to study for a BA in Business Studies. My grades so far are good. I’ve surprised myself by actually how good. 

Starting this blog has also been a huge learning curve. Who new I could build a whole website all by myself?  With that has come new skills in the form of learning about SEO and coding. A year ago I couldn’t have imagined myself doing this, but I am, and learning new things every day. 

I’m also teaching myself to knit, that’s coming along slowly but I’m improving all the time. 

Next year I hope to complete a mini triathlon, providing I keep on top of my leg/hip injury. 

 
The moral of the story though, it’s never too late to learn new things. Life may throw the odd curve ball at us but ultimately if we push ourself we can achieve those dreams and goals. My new attitude is Dream, Plan, Do! 

If my Nan is still learning new skills then I can too. That picture on Facebook has reminded me of this. The only thing that is going to hold me back is my negative attitude, I’m just going to have to keeping batting that away. 

Don’t ever tell yourself that you are too old to learn a new skill. That desire to learn is the first building block in achieving your goals. Age is irrelevant and that saying “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks” it’s wrong because this bitch is owning it right now! 

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Mummy Monday – Darkmouth Worlds Explode A Book Review & Give-away

A couple of weeks ago I was sent a copy of the newly released children’s book Darkmouth Worlds Explode by Shane Hegarty, to share with my two boys Harrison (11) and Jed (8).

   We have spent the past couple of weeks enjoying cuddling up on the sofa and reading this book before bed.  Although they are both very good readers themselves you are never too old for a bed time story, right?

This book is the follow-up to the much praised original book Darkmouth.  So what is it about?

Set in the fictional town of Darkmouth, 12-year-old Finn is faced with difficult task or finding his father, A Legend Hunter, who never returned from the ‘Infested side’. This is a world full of monsters known as legends who threaten the safety of Darkmouth. Accompanied by his best friend Emmie and the reluctant Estravon they face a journey that though full of adventure is fraught with danger and mystery.

How did we get on?

Jed – 8  

 

I really enjoyed this book, I like that it is exciting with  lots of monsters.  I like the pictures as I can see what they look like aswell. 

Harrison – 11 

 

I really liked the book as at the end of  most chapters there were cliff hangers which always made me want to read on. It is a great action/ adventure book as it includes monsters (legends). The book is set in the present,  unlike a lot of books like this that are set in the past, so it makes it a little different, which I liked.

As you can see both of my boys loved this book. I have to say as an adult reading it to them I did too, and was keen to read on and see what happens . Hegarty has a real talent for creating suspense.

If you fancy checking this out for yourself or know someone that would enjoy this book you can pick up a copy for only £6.99 from Amazon, a £3 saving on the cover price.

I also have been sent an extra copy  that 1 lucky reader can win. Entering couldn’t be easier just use the rafflecopter form below.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck!!

 

When Bloggers Behave Badly!

I feel very disappointed that I felt the need to write this post, but today I have experienced first hand Bad Blogger Behaviour. 

What am I talking about? I’m talking about abusing a brands generosity, and I’m now going to tell you a little story. 

As an attendee of the upcoming #bloggersfestival organised by Scarlett London I recently received an email update that also included the opportunity to have a personal diary/planner made by Toad Diaries which could be collected on the day of the actual event. There was a form to fill in and this was offered on a first come first serve basis, to which a set amount where available.  

 The lucky winners recieved an email with a code and instructions how to order the planner from their website. All good so far. Right? Not quite.

Everything was going great untill I tried to confirm my order, it wouldn’t confirm it. “That’s a bit weird” I thought, it must be a technical glitch, so I sent an E-mail to customer services at Toad Diaries for help. They were great and looked into the cause of the problem very quickly. It turned out this was not a technical glitch. A blogger had been sharing the code with other people who hadn’t recieved it so they could also get their mitts on a freebie. This was why when some of us went to process our orders we couldn’t as the quantity limit had been met. 

Aware of what had happened the original code was disabled and intended recipients have individually been sent a unique one-use code. The original winners will still receive their planners.

I cannot compliment the customer service team enough on how they dealt with the situation. For them not only is it embarrassing but it could also be very costly to them. The situation has been put down to a few bad apples abusing their generosity, and that not all bloggers behave this way. 

As a blogger though I feel so disappointed by this type of behaviour. I have no idea who the guilty party was or even if it was more than one blogger sharing the code. This type of behaviour however ruins relationships and trust between brands and bloggers. It could put brands off working with us bloggers all together. 

It is also very disrespectful to Scarlett who works very hard at organising blogging events such as the #bloggersfestival. 

Freebies and PR samples are a perk, just because someone has a blog it doesn’t mean that there is entitlement to receiving these. Abusing a brands generosity and trust is not on, with the  best case scenario being it gives us bloggers a bad name for a while. Worst case? Brands will no longer want to work with bloggers and return to prioritising celebrity endorsements etc.

All I can say is if you feel tempted to pull such a trick please think twice before you do. Not only is it morally wrong but it could also be deamed as fraud. Most importantly Bad Blogger Behaviour is damaging to our community. 

I love to here your thoughts on this.

  

Spending ban Update – 4 weeks and counting

Four weeks ago I announced that I would be putting myself on a spending ban. I have some big events coming up  over the next few months and needed to save my pennies for those. I have to say I’m quite pleased with how I have stuck to it this time. 

I usually suck at spending bans and tend to go a bit crazy after a week. I’m like a kid, tell me no and I want to do something all the more.

 I do have to confess to one slip up, I forgot to cancel my YouBeauty discovery box subscription. Though at £6.95 it’s not a large amount of money so I’m going to let myself off that one. 

Karma though has been on my side, I was very lucky to win a Lush giveaway hosted by Becky at Becky Bedbug. Receiving these goodies has settled my urge for new things. 

  I also came back from holiday to find several beauty samples in the post from freebie websites. If you want to find the websites I use then check out this post here. 

My non-spending has meant I have been able to book flights to Edinburgh for my Husbands birthday (we are going to see the Foofighters and Royal Blood), without doing my usual and using a credit card. See, I’m growing as a person ha ha. 

As we are off to Las Vegas for a friends wedding in October I will be continuing my spending ban for another 2 months at least. My only concession to this is that I am not going to cancel my YouBeauty subscription, at £6.95 it helps settle that urge to splurge. 

All in all I’m happy with how things are going. A lack of shopping posts has meant being more inventive with my content, which can only be a good thing for my blog. It also means I am having a bit of a de-clutter and finishing up old products, which is an added bonus. 

If you are on a spending ban let me know as we can keep each other on track. I know I could do with it. 

Don’t forget to subscribe via email or bloglovin if you want to keep updated with my progress. 

  

Mummy Monday – How to get Free School Uniform from Tesco

I find it hard to believe that we are three weeks into the school holidays. Where has the time gone? The start of the new school year usually brings with it the need to invest in school uniforms, be it that they are worn in, outgrown or like my son starting a new school. If you have more than one child, the cost can soon mount up.

With three children I usally dread the expense but as I discovered recently I was able to save myself some money and get some of that uniform for free. WHAT?? FREE!! Yes I know I’m still feeling the buzz from saving some money. 

How?? Well if you are a Tesco shopper and use the Tesco Clubcard scheme right now you can double up your vouchers as part of their summer boost event, and guess what this now includes school uniform. So if you have for example £10 worth of vouchers you can change them up for £20 worth. It is so easy to do aswell, I just popped into the Clubcard website, made the trade, and within minutes I was sent an E-mail with my voucher codes. All I had to do was shop online at F&F Clothing in the normal way adding my voucher codes at checkout. As orders can also be delivered to store for free it meant just picking up from my local store. 

Having bought school uniform from Tesco in the past I can confirm that the quality is good. My daughters skirt I bought from Tesco last September is still going strong, and she will use it this year as well as it still fits fine. So I’ve only bought one this year, yay yet more saving on uniform. 

If you want to Boost your Clubcard vouchers you have untill 13th to exchange and use your vouchers by. Though if you are using them for school uniform like me you will want to do so before this date anyway. I opted to do this online although you can so so instore as well if you prefer. 

Will you be making use of this offer? Where do you like to purchase the kids uniforms from? 

For more Mummy Monday updates do to forget you can follow me on bloglovin. 

  

Mummy Monday – Picture Postcard’s from Cornwall

Hey!! 

It’s been a while. A week to be exact, though it actually feels like longer since I’ve blogged. The reason for my absense? Well…we have been on holiday to Newquay in Cornwall. As much as I love the area it is a bit of a Mobile signal and Internet blackspot, so alas no updates from me. 

Excuses out of the way, I wanted to kick off my return to blogging with a photo heavy post. I took tonnes of photographs throughout our stay in Cornwall and thought it would be a good idea to share some of the best with you guys. 

So here goes….

Perranporth Beach
Healey’s Cornish Cider Farm

    

The Eden Project
    
    
   
  
  
 
cream tea
   

Newquay Bay
 
Preparing to surf at Fistral Breach
 
  

Fresh prawn & Lobster Salad at The Boathouse Restaurant

 We had such a great time in Cornwall, we were vey lucky with the weather so managed to get in several beach days as well as a trip to the Eden Project and Healey’s Cornish Cider farm. 

Have you been on your holiday yet? Where are you heading to?

   

   

Mummy Monday – Low cost ideas for keeping kids entertained during the school holidays 

So the school holidays are here, finally yay! I’m a huge fan of breaking away from the routine of term time. It means the chance to get out and do things with the family that I normally struggle to fit time in for. 

Having said that a keeping kids amused for nearly 6 weeks can become rather costly. Fortunately I’ve had a few years practice now at sniffing out low cost activities so I thought it would be a good idea to share some of these ideas with my fellow mummy readers;

1. Country Parks are a great place to take the kids. Often with adventure playgrounds, activity trails and sometimes even miniature farms or zoo areas. If you pack a picnic this can be a great  yet inexpensive way to spend a day usually for total sum of paying for parking. Though at some parks parking is actually free. 

  
This picture was taken on a visit to Thorndan Country Park back in febuary half term where we followed the Gruffalo Trail. So as you can see this is not just restricted to warm weather activity. 

2. Why not pick up a cheap fishing net and pop down to your nearest river for some pond dipping.  

 
3. Or you could visit a museum, if you do a bit of research before your visit you  can find out which ones have free or donation based entry. We are lucky to have a very good museum close to us in Chelmsford that has regularly changing exhibitions. Currently it is about childhood from the early victorean era up to modern day. 

It also hosts activity days, we visited on Saturday and the kids were able to have a go at throwing a pot on a Potters wheel. 

  
4. If you want to have a go art and craft activities you don’t actually need to leave the house. We used pizza bases to make stamping tiles recently. We had great fun making note cards. 

 
5. Most kids love having a go at baking, yes it can get messing but hopefully you will have some tasty treats to enjoy as a result. For the receipe for these nutty cacao balls check out this previous post Here

  
6. Why not Check out you local cinema for promotional price special kids screenings? Our local Odean cinema has early morning screenings for kids from as little as £2.50.

7. Or you could visit you local library and sign the kids up to join in with the record breakers reading challenge. Once completed they will earn themselves a certificate and a medal. 

I am a huge fan of libraries as they are free to join and borrow books, providing you return them on time. 

A great way of finding out what is happening in your local area is to pick up a copy of your local kids magazine usually available from places such as the library or from your child’s school or nursery. This will have a classified list of all the local kids activities. It’s a great way of finding out about free activities on offer.  


If you have any ideas for low cost  ways to keep kids entertained during the school holidays please share in the comments section below. I’m always up for a bit inspiration.  

 

Cereal Lovers – No added sugar cereal that actually tastes good!

As promised in Tuesday’s post, which was all about the bloggers food festival, I have a food brand discovery to share with you.

One of the brands I met were Cereal Lovers who were very generous In gifting me some samples of their full range of cereals.  
Now, your probably thinking this is just granola right? True, but where this brand of granola is different is that it is made with no added sugar. Any sugars that are present are from naturally occurring sugars in the fruit juices that are used to flavour them, not the usual sweeteners such as syrup and sugar.

Let me put this into some figures for you, a 30g serving of the blackcurrant and apple flavour contains 20g of carbohydrates of which 3.3g is sugar.

My son is a Type 1 diabetic so for him this is the perfect cereal.  With some natural yogurt and strawberries this makes a lovely balanced breakfast. As the cereal Is high in fibre and low in sugar it really helps to maintain even blood glucose levels.



I have tried this granola myself aswell and can honestly say that they do not compromise on taste. My favourite flavour is the simply orange granola, it is really tangy.

As they are so tasty these granola can be enjoyed by anyone who wants a healthier breakfast alternative not just if you have to watch your sugar intake.

You can purchase these cereals directly from the cereal lovers website. Priced at £3.95 for 400g. Ok I won’t lie, this is a bit pricier than other granola but I’m happy to pay this for my sons  special dietary needs.

Do you like Granola? Is reducing your sugar intake important to you?

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