Teenagers bedroom revamp – the bed

Bess has had the same bedroom since she was 6. We have of course tried to update it in small ways as she has aged but fundamentally it has been pretty much the same.

Her bed is a high sleeper style storage bed we bought from Mrs Flatpack who are based a few miles down the road in Rutland. The bed was chosen because at the time she had a lot of toys and was desperate for storage. I really liked the bed we opted for because it has a built in wardrobe and desk – both things she needed.

A couple of years ago, MrG got stuck into converting the alcove in Bess’s room into a wardrobe which provided a fantastic space for her clothes and has definitely made a world of difference to how she uses her room.

Bess has an issue with her tendons. In simple terms, her tendons haven’t quite kept up with how quickly she has grown and need to be stretched or lengthened possibly with surgery when she (finally) stops growing taller. This makes certain movements like riding a bicycle pretty much impossible and others such as getting up and down a ladder a bit trickier for her than it would be for others.

The high sleeper bed has been brilliant but it has got to the stage where getting in and out of it is borderline painful. So it’s time for it to go!

Picking a bed

So which bed. Bess is definitely not a child anymore. She isn’t an adult either though. Choosing a new bed is not going to easy. I want to give Bess the ultimate choice on what she has. It is her room after all and I would like it stay that way for as long as possible.

We need to take into account though that it won’t be long before Bess is off to university and the room may double as a space for guests while she is away from home. With that in mind, storage and practicality will be key.

Bess and I have picked out a few of our favourites that we have spotted online. I think we have managed to narrow it down to our top 3!

The Amazon find

We both loved the look of this bed. The drawer at the end of the bed would be really handy and we both liked the white wood finish. Early one we agreed that a small double or double would be the best size for the room.

I really like the shelves at the head of the bed but Bess isn’t sure about having that over her head while she sleeps. I suppose that’s fair

The teenagers choice

It has a built in tv. It’s not a hard sell is it. I have to admit that when we went into Dreams and tested this bed I was pretty impressed. Its a good size without feeling imposing and along with having a very swish built in telly, it also has an ottoman feature so is great for storage. As well as this it has ambient lighting and a little slot at the side to pop things like a games console or biscuits. On the side of the headboard there is a hook for headphones.

This bed comes in black leather or grey fabric. We both agreed immediately that the grey was far far nicer. It is pricey but you get what you pay for.

drift bed

The day bed

I really like the idea of a day bed. Lots of cushions to give the sofa look during the day and then easily transform into a comfy bed at night. I remember really wanting one as a teenager and I think Bess quite likes the idea too!

This bed is available in a few different colours but I like this combination.

I think we would buy or make a drawer to push underneath which would offer the storage she needs.

day bed

 

What To Eat When You Have Your Wisdom Teeth Removed

If you are preparing to or have had your wisdom tooth removed, this post is for you. I recently had to go through the pain of wisdom tooth removal and it was no picnic. Literally. Even a week on, picnics would be a nightmare.

I did not research what I needed before I saw my dentist (because of course I didn’t) so I was wholly unprepared. Make sure you stock up and get some help if you have little ones – you are going to need rest for at least a day.

What to eat after wisdom tooth removal

Salt Water

More important than anything else you will be putting into your mouth. You need to be (softly) slamming a salt water chaser after every meal or snack or even drink if it isn’t water.

Keeping your extraction site clean will hopefully help you to avoid infection or dry socket.

I did a warm water and salt rinse roughly 5 times a day for the first couple of days and then decreased over the course of a week or so.

Soup

It didn’t take long for me to get sick of soup. I wasn’t a massive fan before my tooth extraction so having it everyday for a week got very old, very quickly.

As much as I would love to tell you that I lovingly made some hearty and warming concoctions. I didn’t. I went to Aldi and bought a variety of tins. It was cheap and it was easy. Just like me. Fnar.

For the first day or 2 I didn’t even heat them. I didn’t want to risk burning my mouth and doing more damage. I was so hungry that I honestly didn’t care.

Do not buy Oxtail or Vegetable or if you do, make sure you blend it when you heat it – lot’s of little bits that could get stuck in your extraction hole!

Yoghurt

By far the easiest thing to eat. I got 2 small buckets of the 10% fat stuff from Aldi and just added to it as it time went on. No chewing whatsoever and lovely and cool in my mouth.

Pudding

Aldi (and many other shops) sell an assortment of high protein puddings and smoothies. Buy them. Especially the caramel pudding. Really easy to eat and quite filling. Not too pricey either so make sure you buy quite a few.

Puree

Hear me out. If it’s good enough for baby humans then it is good enough for you! You can just puree the hell out of whatever meal you cook for the family. My sister, who also had to endure soft foods for some time following her jaw surgery, told me the key to this is to not mix the foods before you puree. That way they retain their own taste and don’t just taste.. Grey.

Special mention to Aldi Just Apple pouches. They are lovely mixed with yoghurt or on their own – just make sure you don’t try to suck them. Ouch.

Ice cream

Well duh! If not then when?! I stuck to vanilla but just avoid the flavours with bits or chunks.

Weaning with wisdom

After a few days I felt like I was able to eat something a bit more substantial. I felt like it was important not to push my luck so I took it slow, and I’m glad I did.

My jaw refused to open so I could barely fit a teaspoon into my mouth for the first few days. As soon as the gap widened enough for me to be able to use a fork though, I took that as a good sign to try to get a bit more in terms of nutrition into my body.

Do not attempt to eat anything chewy, crunchy or hard. It really isn’t worth it. If it hurts to chew then listen to your body and wait another day.

Some of the foods I enjoyed during the first week after my wisdom tooth extraction were:

  • Scrambled eggs
  • egg mayo
  • overboiled pasta (to make it softer)
  • cottage cheese with pineapple in
  • soft/cream cheese either on its own or made into pate with salmon or tuna
  • ramen, or as we call them, super noodles
  • mashed potato – a lot of mashed potato.
  • mashed banana
  • avocado. I bought the smashed avocado from Aldi and mixed it with scrambled egg or just ate it on it’s own from the pot with a spoon.
  • cottage pie
  • macaroni cheese
  • hummus
  • peanut butter (smooth of course)

Hopefully, your extraction goes smoothly and recovery is fast and as comfortable as possible. Remember to follow your Dentist’s guidance and use ice packs!

Budget Bargains For Your Home – Black Friday with Amazon

Products were received in exchange for writing this post

Amazon really is my absolute saviour this year when it comes to shopping and Black Friday will be no different. Being able to hop online and make my purchases while on my break at work saves me a ton of time and effort and is definitely the reason I am on track for an end of November finish on my Christmas present buying. 

Black friday is upon us and that means Amazon is absolutely teeming with bargains! I really need to update a few bits around the house so I went hunting for some of the bargains on offer in this years Amazon Black Friday deals to help spruce up your rooms. 

Amazon Basics 

I love plain white crockery and I am picky AF about the shape of my bowls and plates. Seriously. It’s a problem. The great thing about buying plain white is that you mix and match with other sets – handy! This 18 piece set is just £33.99 down from £39.99.

This item is described as a microwave cart. You could use it for a microwave but ultimately it’s extra worktop space or a shelf on wheels! Very good for the upcoming festive madness or I suppose you could even pop it in the hall to use to store all of the crap your (my) family leave laying around! This microwave cart is £46.29 down from £66.12 in the Black Friday deals.

 

Eono 

This set of wireless earbuds IS for the home. Hear me out (see what I did there?) My house has been known to descend into looking like a bombsite thanks to the kids and a husband who likes to start many, many jobs at once. Unlike my weirdo sister, I do not enjoy cleaning up. However, stick some earbuds in and some decent music and the game changes.. See. I told you. They are for the house because the house will benefit from me owning them. Plus the Eono earbuds are a bargain at £20.78 from £28.99 

Dear kids, keep your mucky mitts off my charging cable. Thanks. This brightly coloured C type to USB cable is a super long 3m and down to £7.64 from £10.99 and best of all you have a spare for when the first is inevitably swiped!

Umi

I am going to put my hands up at this point and admit that I had no idea you could buy scented duvets. Now that I know this information I feel like I need one. Lavender is supposed to be very good for helping you get a restful night and I honestly love nothing more than a good sleep. Nothing. 

This fine looking duvet is £87.99 from £109.99 and is 10.5 tog goose feather with a lavender scent. What a time to be alive.

I am not a gamer but I am a sit-at-my-desk-all-day-er and this chair looks very comfortable indeed! Boasting an adjustable headrest and lumbar support as well as a reclining function this is also fabric covered so you won’t get that horrible squeakiness of skin on chair if you happen to have not bothered getting dressed for the day. Lovely. 

The ergonomic (ooo) gaming chair is £151.99 down from £179.99

Advent calendar ideas for the whole family

Advent calendars used to be a bit of a worry for me. I sometimes wondered if, as my children grew older, they might lose interest. I know it’s not a big thing but it is a tradition they loved as little ones. A silly tradition possibly but something we enjoyed as a family. Something else that could be lost as they took (yet another) step away from needing me.

Now that Col is 21 and living on his own, Bess is in college and even Moose is starting to question whether a certain bearded man really exists. Well, the reality of them no longer being my babies does hit me like a spade to the face sometimes.

Luckily though, advent calendars are still all the rage! As much as I have fond memories of our chocolate advent calendars from years ago it is lovely to see so many different styles of calendar on offer these days!

Nutcracker Advent Calendar

Nothing say CHRISTMAS like a Nutcracker does. So what could be better than your very own refillable Nutcracker advent calendar! This one available from Ryman is absolutely perfect. It is 70cm tall, sturdy and the 24 little boxes are a great size. One year we decided to buy a small lego set and distribute the pieces so Moose had to guess what he was making and it was an absolute hit.

You can purchase your Nutcracker Advent Calendar here RRP £14.99

Nutcracker shaped advent calendar

Oreo Advent Calendar

What is it with teenagers and their ongoing obsession with Oreos? Mine cannot get enough of them. It is impossible to walk past an Oreo display without a few packets of them landing in the trolley. There are so many flavours now – don’t get me started on double stuff!

The chocolate covered Oreo advent calendar from La Di Da Sweet Treats however is more than a little bit special! Behind each door, you will find a selection of 25 milk and white Belgian chocolate, coating a delicious mini Oreo, each individually hand decorated with sugar paste Christmas decorations – December will never quite be the same with this super advent calendar.

RRP £22 and you can buy yours here

Oreo Advent Calendar

Schleich Advent Calendars

Schleich toys are one of those that you know will be a great quality product. All 3 of my children have played with Schleich animals and dinosaurs and I think that the advent calendar is a fantastic starter to introduce them to the world of Schleich play.

What is so great about toys like these is that they encourage imaginative play and they are so beautifully detailed. Moose has already commented on how realistic the horse figures look. I know he cannot wait to get stuck in!

RRP £29.99 and available to purchase here

Coffee Advent Calendar

Why, yes I do run on caffeine. Thanks for asking!

The 12 Days of Discovery Advent Calendar is a specially curated collection of coffees from the Chimney Fire 2022 Discovery Coffee range. Each coffee has been carefully selected by their roastery team to satisfy different tastes, and introduce a new and interesting coffee from around the world – be that a new origin or region that they hadn’t sourced from before, a new process or varietal, or something seasonal with a unique flavour profile.

RRP £45 and available to buy here

Gin Advent Calendar

I know it’s 12 and not 24, but, hear me out!

The Twelve Days of Gin Advent Calendar is the essential for gin lovers this December. A Sous Chef exclusive, enjoy 12 unique flavours of Gin in a Tin. Countdown advent with new and exciting flavours of festive spirit. 

This gin advent calendar features classic flavours of elderflower and ginger, alongside unusual ingredients of pumpkin and black pepper. It also includes one new and unreleased flavour from Gin In A Tin – but we won’t spoil the surprise! 

RRP £49 and you can buy yours here

Haribo Advent Calendar

There is a reason that kids and adults love it so.. Haribo is tasty. Everyone knows it. The great thing about the Haribo advent calendar is that you will find a lovely mix of flavours and types from the Haribo range.

From MOAMs to Goldbears you will ber certain to find all of your favourites

RRP £5 and available to buy from Asda, Tesco, B&M and many more!

Roblox Advent Calendar

Hands up who has a Roblox obsessed child? Pretty much all of us, right! M is SO excited to get stuck into opening this one.

The Roblox advent calendar features 6 figures to build along with virtual items to use in the game. The figures within the calendar are all very festive: Elf, Christmas Tree, Gingerbread Man, Magical Reindeer, Santa Claus and Snowman! Along with these are lots of accessories.

I know that M will get hours of play out of this one

RRP £40 and available to buy online

 

Which advent calendars will your family be choosing this Christmas? Comment below and let me know!

5 pet care tips for parents

Pet ownership comes with a hefty task list.

But our furry friends bring so much joy into our lives in return.

Owning a pet is also a positive way to teach children about responsibility and can bring the family closer together.

With that in mind, these are five pet care tips for parents that will make your life easier, help your kids understand the importance of good pet care, and ensure your animal companions are well looked after.

 

  1. Prepare together

If your new pet is going to be a surprise for your child, you can skip this step

But if you’re planning in advance as a family, involve them in the early stages of preparation – from choosing your pet, to buying essentials like beds, cages, and toys.

Letting them help you with these decisions early on will help them feel involved, and the experience of that early excitement before adoption will only encourage them to play a hands-on role with their new best friend.

  1. Create a rota

Sharing chores is an excellent way for children to learn valuable life skills and master the art of responsibility.

And doling out pet-related tasks on a rota is a great way for them to enjoy the full pet ownership experience too! Family chores app Cozi is a favourite with many parents when it comes to task delegation.

  1. Know what to look for

We hate it when our pets suffer, and unlike us, they can’t explain what’s wrong.

That means that when something isn’t right, they rely on us to notice the warning signs, such as a lack of appetite, low mood and more obvious physical symptoms.

Some of these may indicate a serious underlying health condition. But just like humans, others may be more manageable, such as allergies. A good vet is a valuable ally, particularly one that pairs with experts like Avacta Animal Health to provide thorough and up-to-date treatment.

Teaching your kids to keep an eye on your pets helps them develop that caring role, and strengthens the bond between pet and young owner.

  1. Teach them training

Training a pet can be a surprisingly useful skill – we’ve all seen those Facebook videos of dogs who can fetch snacks from the fridge.

It also makes your life easier – there’s nothing worse than an animal who doesn’t heed the word ‘no.’

And involving your children in the house-training process is good for both you and your pet, who will learn authority form every individual in the house. It’s also rewarding for your children to be involved in this part of pet ownership.

  1. Make memories!

The most important part of childhood is the memories you make as a family, and pets will only add to the experience.

Be sure to take plenty of photographs together to remember those special times – your pets will make a hugely positive impact on your child’s treasured memories, and it’s a time in their life that you and they will always reflect upon fondly.

These are just five ways for parents to teach their children the importance of pet care and make the most of the experience together.