The Art of Gifting (just in time for Mother’s Day…)

Laura Marrs, SageLoves, #whatkatydidUK

SageLoves: Founder Laura Marrs

Sick of shopping, but still want to get gorgeous gifts for the people you care about? I chat to Essex mum-of-two LAURA MARRS of personalised gift-finding service SageLoves about present buying and hint-dropping…  

Q When did you set up SageLoves, and how does it work?

A SageLoves has been my brain child for the past year. I was always on the hunt for small unique brands to gift to friends and family, and in turn was always asked to hunt out gifts for them… that’s when my idea was born! Finally, I was able to put finger to touch screen six months ago, when I launched SageLoves website and social media platforms.

In a nutshell SageLoves is a personalised gift finding service with the added benefit of membership deals and discounts. You sign up, give me the brief and leave the rest to me. It’s the red-carpet treatment, no trawling the shops, internet etc…I work closely with a huge range of independent and unique brands and together a gift for specific occasions can be found. Continue reading

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Review: Cambridge Satchel Company 15 inch bag

Cambridge Satchel Company, Sonny Jim, #whatkatydidUK

Little fan: Sonny Jim seems to approve of my new Cambridge Satchel Company number

Sonny Jim is only a few months away from turning two – and my changing bag is even closer to reaching that milestone.

I bought it when my due date was looming and I had no idea of what I would actually need in a changing bag, but I liked the fact it didn’t look too mumsy, was leather and it had decent straps.

And in fairness, my Mothercare number has more than delivered. It’s seen me through the newborn days, epic walks with a tiny tot who would only sleep in the buggy. Trips to the beach. Picnics. Our first family holiday. Leaking bottles. Forgotten bananas. Poonami nappies.

It’s only now that the inside sections have ripped that I’m kind of over it. And I didn’t really want to go buying another “changing” bag, when the amount of gear I need to cart around for Sonny Jim isn’t really in the newborn baby league anymore. Especially now he’s got his own (super cute bumblebee!) rucksack/reins for his snacks.

So, I needed a new bag. A less mummy, more me bag. But that would still be able to fit a few nappies, a beaker, an emergency toddler vest/trousers in. It needed to be practical. But stylish. And good quality. Something classic. But not boring. And a decent size.

And, this was when I discovered the Cambridge Satchel Company (www.cambridgesatchel.com)

Continue reading

Aldi’s Baby and Toddler event is back next week!

Aldi, sleeping bag, #whatkatydidUK

Bargain: Baby sleeping bag

Ahem. Feeling the pinch after Christmas?

Aldi’s popular Baby and Toddler event is back and available online (aldi.co.uk) from Thursday, January 11 and in stores on Thursday, January 18.

The average British family spends up to £800 celebrating Christmas, with £473.83 on presents alone… so some super cheap baby and toddler buys can only be a good thing.

Top of my must-have list for mamas and mummies-to-be are the and 2.5 tog baby sleeping bags (£9.99) and oh-so-handy cellular blankets for only £2.99.

Plus for anyone with a little one on the way, that hasn’t already got the nursery sorted… the Aldi Mamia furniture set is luuuuurvely.

It includes nursery wardrobe (£119.99), nursery cot bed with drawer (£129.99), and nursery changing unit (£99.99). With a combined cost of £349.97, its 75 per cent cheaper (!!) than the popular Silver Cross Nostalgia Complete Room set that retails at £1,402.50. Continue reading

Thoughtless drivers in parent-and-child bays SHOULD be fined

Sonny Jim, Katy Pearson, #whatkatydidUK, car seat

Struggle – it’s not easy getting Sonny Jim in and out of this

Nabbing a parent-and-child parking space isn’t illegal, but using one without a child in your car could soon land you with a £25 fine.

Hoo-blooming-rah! About time too.

It comes as a new survey reveals that one in ten people now park in a parent-and-child bay even when they don’t have a child in the car because they’re not scared of getting punished.

As a mummy, let me tell you, it feels like more than one in ten. The chances of ever getting one of these spaces is always pretty slim.

And it’s not until you are actually faced with the logistics of getting a baby out of a car seat, and into a buggy or trolley, without scrapping the cars next to you, putting your back out or bashing your tot’s head on the door that you realise how much you really, really need the extra space. Continue reading

Old Father’s Day cards show how daddies have changed

Father's Day, What Katy Did. Katy Pearson, #whatkatydid, Clintons

Papas of the past: How Father’s Day cards used to look

Archive analysis of Father’s Day cards by Clintons ahead of Sunday has shown how dads’ roles have shifted in the past 50 years.

Depictions of dads as aloof, pipe-smoking, newspaper-reading, besuited men “enthroned” by the fireplace have disappeared from all cards (with the exception of parody cards!) and have been replaced by casually-dressed, soft-in-the-middle, sofa-dwelling figures, often likened to Darth Vader.

Clintons looked at thousands of depictions of dads on Father’s Day cards since the Fifties and found:

• Dads appear to have put on 10-15 kilos
• Dads have dressed down
• Dads’ leisure time preferences have shifted from reading the paper in slippers to barbecuing or watching the football on the sofa with a drink
• Dads have a much stronger emotional connection with their kids are often the subject of affectionate jokes Continue reading

Review: Boxwild’s Bird Feeder Gift Box

fruit feeder, Boxwild, Katy Pearson #whatkatydid

Fabulous – the fruit feeder in action

Here’s a little confession. I’m a bit of a birder.

Ever since the hubby and I lived for eight years in a teeny-tiny old mill cottage in the middle of nowhere, I’ve loved looking out for the birds fluttering their way into our garden.

We had a pair of robins (one fat, one skinny) that seemed to come back every year and they were joined by an array of other breeds as the seasons unfolded.

Now by the seaside, we don’t seem to play host to quite as many different birds… but the ones that do visit I’m super keen to encourage to keep coming back! Continue reading

Six of the best… Father’s Day gifts

Forget boring this Father’s Day, here’s my pick of the most perfect presents…

1 Personalised wood blocks, from £10 (including p&P), Wood Prints by Jo: www.facebook.com/woodprintsbyjo

Personalised words, quotes and photos decoupaged on to chunky standalone blocks of wood by Thundersley-based Jo Fitzmauric. She then sands them twice to give a smooth, chic and rustic look!

2 Matching boy gang T-shirts, adult £22; child, 15, Essex Mama: www.essexmama.co.uk

Essex Mama was started by a full-time mama from north Essex – all tops are made to order and designed to promote good vibes, togetherness and empowerment.

3 Reasons I love you Daddy embroidered frame, £20, Girl Friday: www.etsy.com/uk/shop/GirlFridayEmbroidery

This super cute 24cm X 24cm freehand embroidered picture frame by Hockley’s Dawn Friday, features your little one’s favourite thing about their daddy. Continue reading