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So, I was just sat here typing out a caption for tomorrow's Instagram post - a picture of me holding Ava in my arms as she reaches up to grab some leaves off of the flowery bush just above our heads - and this huge wave of sadness swept over me as I realised that soon it won't just be me and Ava anymore.

As much as I am so excited about having another baby and Ava having a little brother to grow up with, I feel like I am almost losing something. For the last almost two years, it has been me and Ava all day every day. There hasn't be an entire day that I have been away from her. And we have become a little team. In so much as I am her world, she is mine. And all of that is about to change. As much as she will still mean everything to me, she won't be the only one in need of my time and attention. And I am scared. I am scared of how I will feel. And how she will feel. And I don't want to lose this connection we have. I don't want to lose us.


Our lives are about to change in a big way and it is going to be a whole new adventure. We will adapt and find new ways to have fun together. Our routines will adjust eventually. And I know that Ava will be an incredible older sister but, almost selfishly, part of me does want to keep her almost all to myself. Because I know that, come October, it will be all breastfeeding and sleepless nights and nappy changes and people visiting the baby. In the turmoil, there won't be time for one-on-one hot chocolate dates and slow walks around the park looking for leaves. It will be a new kind of exciting. And that's how I need to look at it. Not as a loss of what I had but as a gain of something even better.

So, for now, I am focusing on making her smile. Making memories together. Making the most of everyday. And trying to get myself used to the idea of mothering two rather than just one.

You may also like:
Pregnancy Diaries #1 #2 #3
How I Found Out I Was Pregnant With Baby #2
An Ava Update
How I Find Time To Blog As A Stay-At-Home Mum

Pregnancy Diaries #4: Second Time Mum Blues


So, I was just sat here typing out a caption for tomorrow's Instagram post - a picture of me holding Ava in my arms as she reaches up to grab some leaves off of the flowery bush just above our heads - and this huge wave of sadness swept over me as I realised that soon it won't just be me and Ava anymore.

As much as I am so excited about having another baby and Ava having a little brother to grow up with, I feel like I am almost losing something. For the last almost two years, it has been me and Ava all day every day. There hasn't be an entire day that I have been away from her. And we have become a little team. In so much as I am her world, she is mine. And all of that is about to change. As much as she will still mean everything to me, she won't be the only one in need of my time and attention. And I am scared. I am scared of how I will feel. And how she will feel. And I don't want to lose this connection we have. I don't want to lose us.


Our lives are about to change in a big way and it is going to be a whole new adventure. We will adapt and find new ways to have fun together. Our routines will adjust eventually. And I know that Ava will be an incredible older sister but, almost selfishly, part of me does want to keep her almost all to myself. Because I know that, come October, it will be all breastfeeding and sleepless nights and nappy changes and people visiting the baby. In the turmoil, there won't be time for one-on-one hot chocolate dates and slow walks around the park looking for leaves. It will be a new kind of exciting. And that's how I need to look at it. Not as a loss of what I had but as a gain of something even better.

So, for now, I am focusing on making her smile. Making memories together. Making the most of everyday. And trying to get myself used to the idea of mothering two rather than just one.

You may also like:
Pregnancy Diaries #1 #2 #3
How I Found Out I Was Pregnant With Baby #2
An Ava Update
How I Find Time To Blog As A Stay-At-Home Mum

As I write this, I am currently sat in Costa. Ava is at home with her dad and I am eating a big slice of carrot cake. Sounds like heaven, right? A rare bit of me time without having to worry about my coffee date having a screaming fit on the floor. I should be having the time of my life but, surprise surprise, I am absolutely consumed by mum guilt. As I went to leave the house, Ava saw me putting on my shoes and then went to the shoe rack, got her shoes, and passed them to me to put on her. When I ignored her request - feeling like a complete monster - she tried to shove her little toes into the shoes herself. And I almost couldn't leave her. But I did.

That is what trying to do anything outside of caring for your child is like. Every part of you goes into mumzilla mode and screams at you to drop everything and just snuggle that baby for the next four hours. Even though you know they are safe and happy with who you are leaving them with, you still know it isn't you. And you kinda want them to miss you like you miss them, right? But also that is your worst nightmare.

So, today I wanted to chat about how I find time to run this blog and create content and reply to a whole lot of emails whilst also being a stay at home mum to a rather energetic toddler.

Get your kid involved in photos
When Ava was newborn, it wasn't that difficult to find time to blog. I mean, I could put her down anywhere and she would most likely sleep or just lie there staring at things. But now she gets into everything. The second you open the laptop, she will pounce on you and start pushing all the keys like there's no tomorrow. And don't even get me started on trying to take flatlay photos when she is around. So, one solution I have found is getting her involved where I can. I know that trying to take perfect pictures in cafes or hotels that I am reviewing isn't feasible so I let Ava run around and get in the shot. I make her presence in the shot a feature of it rather than trying to keep her out of the way. I let her little hands find their way into flatlays and I embrace the madness.


Ask if events are kid-friendly
When I am invited to local events, whether I am able to attend usually depends on Isaac's work schedule. But, instead of just refusing if Isaac's work clashes with the event time, I have recently started asking if the event is kid-friendly. More often than not, it isn't (and sometimes it can be a bit daunting to think of turning up with an unpredictable toddler in tow) but it is also good to start creating this dialogue and possibly make those holding the events consider adapting to working mums in future. An example of a great kid-friendly event was the Britax Roemer event we attended in London last summer.

Utilise nap time
After a full morning of looking after your little one, it can often feel like the last thing you want to do is open your laptop and start typing but naptime is a great time to make use of. I usually use naptime to update social media and reply to emails as these don't require quite as much effort as writing up a post or shooting content but you are still ticking something off of your never-ending to-do-list. I then use the time in the evening when Ava is asleep for writing up posts and reading other people's blog posts.

Get out and about with your tripod
My tripod has been my saving grace over the last year and a half. It allows me to take outfit pictures and share the kind of content I want to without relying on Isaac to take my pictures for me. It gives me so much freedom and allows me to take control of my time and content. I tend to take Ava along with me, put her in her pushchair, and give her a bottle as I shoot a few pictures. It often means I only get between 5 - 8 shots but I have gotten to the stage now where the first three are usually the best anyway. I wrote a whole post about my top tips for shooting with a tripod recently so make sure you check that out.

What I'm Wearing (aff links):
Jumpsuit: Miss Selfridge
Trainers: Primark
Necklace: Liars & Lovers via ASOS

You may also like:
An Ava Update
Reclaiming My Identity Post-partum
My Name Isn't Mum
Why I'll Never Be A Mummy Blogger
My Top Tips For New Bloggers

How I Find Time To Blog As A Stay-At-Home Mum


As I write this, I am currently sat in Costa. Ava is at home with her dad and I am eating a big slice of carrot cake. Sounds like heaven, right? A rare bit of me time without having to worry about my coffee date having a screaming fit on the floor. I should be having the time of my life but, surprise surprise, I am absolutely consumed by mum guilt. As I went to leave the house, Ava saw me putting on my shoes and then went to the shoe rack, got her shoes, and passed them to me to put on her. When I ignored her request - feeling like a complete monster - she tried to shove her little toes into the shoes herself. And I almost couldn't leave her. But I did.

That is what trying to do anything outside of caring for your child is like. Every part of you goes into mumzilla mode and screams at you to drop everything and just snuggle that baby for the next four hours. Even though you know they are safe and happy with who you are leaving them with, you still know it isn't you. And you kinda want them to miss you like you miss them, right? But also that is your worst nightmare.

So, today I wanted to chat about how I find time to run this blog and create content and reply to a whole lot of emails whilst also being a stay at home mum to a rather energetic toddler.

Get your kid involved in photos
When Ava was newborn, it wasn't that difficult to find time to blog. I mean, I could put her down anywhere and she would most likely sleep or just lie there staring at things. But now she gets into everything. The second you open the laptop, she will pounce on you and start pushing all the keys like there's no tomorrow. And don't even get me started on trying to take flatlay photos when she is around. So, one solution I have found is getting her involved where I can. I know that trying to take perfect pictures in cafes or hotels that I am reviewing isn't feasible so I let Ava run around and get in the shot. I make her presence in the shot a feature of it rather than trying to keep her out of the way. I let her little hands find their way into flatlays and I embrace the madness.


Ask if events are kid-friendly
When I am invited to local events, whether I am able to attend usually depends on Isaac's work schedule. But, instead of just refusing if Isaac's work clashes with the event time, I have recently started asking if the event is kid-friendly. More often than not, it isn't (and sometimes it can be a bit daunting to think of turning up with an unpredictable toddler in tow) but it is also good to start creating this dialogue and possibly make those holding the events consider adapting to working mums in future. An example of a great kid-friendly event was the Britax Roemer event we attended in London last summer.

Utilise nap time
After a full morning of looking after your little one, it can often feel like the last thing you want to do is open your laptop and start typing but naptime is a great time to make use of. I usually use naptime to update social media and reply to emails as these don't require quite as much effort as writing up a post or shooting content but you are still ticking something off of your never-ending to-do-list. I then use the time in the evening when Ava is asleep for writing up posts and reading other people's blog posts.

Get out and about with your tripod
My tripod has been my saving grace over the last year and a half. It allows me to take outfit pictures and share the kind of content I want to without relying on Isaac to take my pictures for me. It gives me so much freedom and allows me to take control of my time and content. I tend to take Ava along with me, put her in her pushchair, and give her a bottle as I shoot a few pictures. It often means I only get between 5 - 8 shots but I have gotten to the stage now where the first three are usually the best anyway. I wrote a whole post about my top tips for shooting with a tripod recently so make sure you check that out.

What I'm Wearing (aff links):
Jumpsuit: Miss Selfridge
Trainers: Primark
Necklace: Liars & Lovers via ASOS

You may also like:
An Ava Update
Reclaiming My Identity Post-partum
My Name Isn't Mum
Why I'll Never Be A Mummy Blogger
My Top Tips For New Bloggers

For the past 6 years, I have been writing this blog and, in that time, I have made many online friends, I have had some awesome opportunities to work with brands big and small, and I have documented all the adventures and big life moments that have occurred during that time too. What I haven't done is made this blog into a big income generator for me (albeit not through lack of trying). So, you may be wondering why I am sat here penning a blog post of top tips for new bloggers if I haven't really made it myself. Well, I guess, there is no one more qualified than me to share what you should avoid doing as a new blogger and share with you what I have learnt over the last 6 years of being involved in the blogging community and also the industry side of blogging too.

Get social
Blogging is all about forming relationships. You are offering your readers something - be it an opinion, a bit of advice, or even directions on where to buy the cutest summer staples - and they will want to interact with you and offer a response. So, set up comment sections on your posts (honestly, there is nothing worse than a blog without a comments section) - I have found that Disqus is really easy to use and great for starting a conversation. And get on social media - the biggies you should have are Twitter and Instagram - and make them easily clickable on your blog page. Then just get chatting. Take time to get to know other people in the blogging community and take an interest in their content. One of the best things about the blogging community is how supportive most people are of each other but be aware that spammy comments and not-so-genuine interactions are possibly the easiest way to stop your blogging career dead in its tracks.

Another type of relationship you'll be forming is a working relationship with PRs. These are the people who will contact you with opportunities on behalf of brands. My top tip for dealing with PR people is to always be polite and professional. If an opportunity doesn't interest you, politely decline it. Don't talk bad about certain PR companies online as it will deter others from wanting to work with you. And keep your cool. As a smaller blogger, you will often get emails that feel a little insulting - like those asking for at least 8 hours of work in return for exposure - but try not to get annoyed. Simply decline and move on.

Don't allow your niche to restrict you
Every blogger and their mum will tell you that you need a niche (aka an area that your blog focuses on - like fashion or travel) but I am going against the grain a little here by saying that finding a niche shouldn't worry you too much. It isn't the be all and end all of blogging. For the longest time, I defined myself as a 'little bit of everything' blogger because there were so many different things that interested me. Lately, I would say that I have focused in on family and travel - honestly, I would love to be able to be a full-on travel blogger but my bank account is still sobbing from our Mallorca trip - but I find that I personally need to have a bit of flexibility and allow myself to write about whatever I want to. Limiting yourself to a niche can sometimes feel a little bit restrictive. Sure, people know what you're about but we all grow and adapt so why shouldn't our blogs grow with us?

Link relevant posts
This is a piece of advice that I got from the wonderful Fran Rockey in her blog post Things I Wish I Knew When I Started Blogging and that is so link new blog posts to relevant old blog posts as it helps to boost your SEO (which is a techy term for your blog's googly stats. Yeah, I don't know what it is but it sounds important). Just scroll down to the bottom of this post and you will find a section that says 'you may also enjoy' then I have linked a few blog posts that chat about similar topics. You can also link key words throughout your post to old posts too. If you look at the paragraph before this, you will see the word Mallorca in bold. I have linked that to one of my blog posts about my trip to Mallorca. So, give that a go. But maybe go back and tidy up your ode to galaxy leggings from 2014 first before presenting it to the world. Yknow, for embarrassment control and all that.

Set up affiliate links
Another thing I have been doing lately is setting up affiliate links. Peep the 'what I am wearing' section at the bottom of this post and the shop section on my homepage. Both of these contain affiliate links which give me a little bit of cash with every click through and purchase. I use the site ShopStyle which is just a fashion related affiliate site but there are loads of others out there. So far, I have made just over £1 commission (lol) but that is after just a couple of months using it is worth just setting it up as a few pounds will add up either way and it is really easy to use so why not.

Experiment with different apps
After reading Corinne's post on 5 Apps To Up Your Instagram Game, I decided to have a play around with some different apps and that is how I found Planoly. They are an app where you can schedule your Instagram posts and it has just made everything so much easier. I would also suggest giving Adobe Lightroom a go for editing - I think they do a free trial - as that is what I use to edit and I love it (especially as you can play God and make people disappear from the backgrounds of your photos).

Consistency
My final tip is to just keep going. There's a saying that the last thing a fruit tree does is produce fruit and I often think about that in terms of my blog and social media. There is no quick fix to making it in this industry - only producing consistently good content and engaging with others will get you there. So, keep going and enjoy the process.

What I'm Wearing (aff links):
Blouse: Primark (similar linked)
Leggings: Primark
Hat: Primark

You may also enjoy:
Allowing Your Blog To Grow With You
Can You Make It As A Blogger If You Suck At Instagram?
Shooting With A Tripod: My Top Tips
How To Overcome Writer's Block As A Blogger
Learning To Switch Off As A Blogger

My Top Tips For New Bloggers


For the past 6 years, I have been writing this blog and, in that time, I have made many online friends, I have had some awesome opportunities to work with brands big and small, and I have documented all the adventures and big life moments that have occurred during that time too. What I haven't done is made this blog into a big income generator for me (albeit not through lack of trying). So, you may be wondering why I am sat here penning a blog post of top tips for new bloggers if I haven't really made it myself. Well, I guess, there is no one more qualified than me to share what you should avoid doing as a new blogger and share with you what I have learnt over the last 6 years of being involved in the blogging community and also the industry side of blogging too.

Get social
Blogging is all about forming relationships. You are offering your readers something - be it an opinion, a bit of advice, or even directions on where to buy the cutest summer staples - and they will want to interact with you and offer a response. So, set up comment sections on your posts (honestly, there is nothing worse than a blog without a comments section) - I have found that Disqus is really easy to use and great for starting a conversation. And get on social media - the biggies you should have are Twitter and Instagram - and make them easily clickable on your blog page. Then just get chatting. Take time to get to know other people in the blogging community and take an interest in their content. One of the best things about the blogging community is how supportive most people are of each other but be aware that spammy comments and not-so-genuine interactions are possibly the easiest way to stop your blogging career dead in its tracks.

Another type of relationship you'll be forming is a working relationship with PRs. These are the people who will contact you with opportunities on behalf of brands. My top tip for dealing with PR people is to always be polite and professional. If an opportunity doesn't interest you, politely decline it. Don't talk bad about certain PR companies online as it will deter others from wanting to work with you. And keep your cool. As a smaller blogger, you will often get emails that feel a little insulting - like those asking for at least 8 hours of work in return for exposure - but try not to get annoyed. Simply decline and move on.

Don't allow your niche to restrict you
Every blogger and their mum will tell you that you need a niche (aka an area that your blog focuses on - like fashion or travel) but I am going against the grain a little here by saying that finding a niche shouldn't worry you too much. It isn't the be all and end all of blogging. For the longest time, I defined myself as a 'little bit of everything' blogger because there were so many different things that interested me. Lately, I would say that I have focused in on family and travel - honestly, I would love to be able to be a full-on travel blogger but my bank account is still sobbing from our Mallorca trip - but I find that I personally need to have a bit of flexibility and allow myself to write about whatever I want to. Limiting yourself to a niche can sometimes feel a little bit restrictive. Sure, people know what you're about but we all grow and adapt so why shouldn't our blogs grow with us?

Link relevant posts
This is a piece of advice that I got from the wonderful Fran Rockey in her blog post Things I Wish I Knew When I Started Blogging and that is so link new blog posts to relevant old blog posts as it helps to boost your SEO (which is a techy term for your blog's googly stats. Yeah, I don't know what it is but it sounds important). Just scroll down to the bottom of this post and you will find a section that says 'you may also enjoy' then I have linked a few blog posts that chat about similar topics. You can also link key words throughout your post to old posts too. If you look at the paragraph before this, you will see the word Mallorca in bold. I have linked that to one of my blog posts about my trip to Mallorca. So, give that a go. But maybe go back and tidy up your ode to galaxy leggings from 2014 first before presenting it to the world. Yknow, for embarrassment control and all that.

Set up affiliate links
Another thing I have been doing lately is setting up affiliate links. Peep the 'what I am wearing' section at the bottom of this post and the shop section on my homepage. Both of these contain affiliate links which give me a little bit of cash with every click through and purchase. I use the site ShopStyle which is just a fashion related affiliate site but there are loads of others out there. So far, I have made just over £1 commission (lol) but that is after just a couple of months using it is worth just setting it up as a few pounds will add up either way and it is really easy to use so why not.

Experiment with different apps
After reading Corinne's post on 5 Apps To Up Your Instagram Game, I decided to have a play around with some different apps and that is how I found Planoly. They are an app where you can schedule your Instagram posts and it has just made everything so much easier. I would also suggest giving Adobe Lightroom a go for editing - I think they do a free trial - as that is what I use to edit and I love it (especially as you can play God and make people disappear from the backgrounds of your photos).

Consistency
My final tip is to just keep going. There's a saying that the last thing a fruit tree does is produce fruit and I often think about that in terms of my blog and social media. There is no quick fix to making it in this industry - only producing consistently good content and engaging with others will get you there. So, keep going and enjoy the process.

What I'm Wearing (aff links):
Blouse: Primark (similar linked)
Leggings: Primark
Hat: Primark

You may also enjoy:
Allowing Your Blog To Grow With You
Can You Make It As A Blogger If You Suck At Instagram?
Shooting With A Tripod: My Top Tips
How To Overcome Writer's Block As A Blogger
Learning To Switch Off As A Blogger

We all know that I love a good hotel. Everything from diving head first into that meringue nest of a bed at the end of a long day of exploring to the promise of an absolute feast every morning in the shape of an unlimited buffet breakfast (you will usually find me hanging around the pastry section with a plate piled full of croissants and pain au chocolat). I would go as far as saying that a hotel can make or break a holiday for me. So, with that in mind, I was slightly dubious about booking our stay as part of a package deal online. Honestly, I wasn't expecting much but BQ Apolo turned out to be the best hotel I think I have ever stayed in.




The room
I had seen pictures of the rooms online before Isaac booked the deal he found through Opodo but I never tend to trust those professional photos you see on hotel websites because of the amount of times I have booked somewhere expecting a gorgeous room to find out that the picture was actually of an executive suite costing a cool £500 per night. But, let me tell you, this place was just as luxurious as the website suggests. The room is a beautiful turquoise colour with white details and it came with a balcony - which, I assume, all of the rooms do. It had a nicely decorated slate grey bathroom with a reasonably sized shower and all the toiletries you could ever need (including everything from a mini toothbrush to a shoe shiner). The room also came with a fridge but, unfortunately, no tea and coffee making facilities (although the bar staff were more than happy to provide us with hot water and milk for Ava whenever we asked free of charge). The best thing about the room had to be the TV though. It had BBC1, BBC2, ITV, and CBeebies on it which was an absolute godsend as it meant that Ava could fall asleep watching her favourite programmes which greatly decreased her tantrum count.




The food
As part of our deal, we had breakfast included but I can fully say that we would have upgraded to half board if possible. There were so many options for the breakfast. You could have everything from churros with chocolate sauce to scrambled eggs and chorizo. And that is not even scratching the surface of the options. There was so much fruit, so many pastries, at least 6 varieties of milk for my diary-avoiding pals. And there was something new everyday. My favourite had to be the boiled potatoes with herbs they served one morning as my morning sickness was playing up but those potatoes soon settled my stomach. I honestly can't think of anything that was lacking at all.

One evening, we opted to pay extra and have the buffet dinner. It was $20 per adult but I can honestly say that it was worth it. They had a huge variety of veggie, meat, and fish dishes as well as a huge salad station and a whole corner dedicated to desserts and cheeseboards. I really went in on the cold foods whilst Isaac devoured a whole lot of rice and curried veg and fish of every kind.

In terms of drinks, there were a good amount of options at the bar. As I can't drink and Isaac chooses not to, we didn't really explore them very well but we did give an alcohol-free Pina Colada a go which, if I remember rightly, costed about $5 each. It was lovely and fresh and fruity but maybe a little sweet. I wouldn't have minded trying out their alcohol-free Mojito or San Francisco either.



The facilities
The hotel itself isn't the hugest in comparison to many hotels and resorts you will find in Mallorca. It had 6 floors, a bar, a restaurant located downstairs, a luggage room, an indoors pool, and an outdoors pool with sun loungers dotted around it. My one issue with the pools were that they were absolutely freezing! I guess, they don't heat them but rather let the sun heat them. As we travelled at the start of the season (May), the sun hadn't really worked its magic yet. As Isaac put it, the indoors pool was like something out of a bushtucker trial. Ava loved the indoors pool though. Despite the coldness, it was quite nice to have a dip and, most days, we had the pool entirely to ourselves which was nice as it meant no-one had to see me wincing as I lowered myself into the icy pool or hear the words that I uttered as I lowered myself into said icy pool.


The atmosphere
I think one thing that every parent worries about when travelling with a toddler is how the hotel is going to react to said toddler. I mean, you never know whether people will treat your child running around like a nuisance or if they will be accommodating to the additional needs a child brings. But, I have to say, the staff at BQ Apolo were what really made the trip - especially the restaurant staff. I have never seen people go out of their way to make such a fuss over Ava and make her feel really special - especially when she has already approached them at least 50 times that day to say 'hi'. The staff, in general, were just so lovely. As it was my birthday on the penultimate day of our trip, they gave me a big slice of cake with a candle in it at breakfast and, when we returned to our rooms, we found a bottle of Cava and two chocolates had been left for us with a note (in German but that's not a problem for this German speaker *hair flick*) wishing me a very happy birthday. Although I couldn't drink the Cava (I left it with a note in Spanish for the housekeeper to take home), it was such a lovely touch and made my day even more special.



Location
The hotel was located just off of the Can Pastilla beach and had lots of little shops and restaurants nearby. There was also a bus stop about 5 minutes walk from the hotel that could take you into the capital city of Palma within 20 minutes. The hotel was 10 minutes taxi journey from Palma Airport. It was really nicely located as Can Pastilla isn't overly hectic or wild like Magaluf but it is close to Palma and has so much to do nearby too.

Honestly, I can't say enough good things about this hotel. There were very few things that I would change about our stay and the staff really went above and beyond to make our stay special which means so much to me.

You may also enjoy:
Our Stay At Hampton By Hilton In Edinburgh's West End
A Local's Guide To Visiting Devon
Berlin Travel Guide
Everything We Ate In Berlin
Cardiff Travel Guide

Our Stay At BQ Apolo In Can Pastilla, Mallorca


We all know that I love a good hotel. Everything from diving head first into that meringue nest of a bed at the end of a long day of exploring to the promise of an absolute feast every morning in the shape of an unlimited buffet breakfast (you will usually find me hanging around the pastry section with a plate piled full of croissants and pain au chocolat). I would go as far as saying that a hotel can make or break a holiday for me. So, with that in mind, I was slightly dubious about booking our stay as part of a package deal online. Honestly, I wasn't expecting much but BQ Apolo turned out to be the best hotel I think I have ever stayed in.




The room
I had seen pictures of the rooms online before Isaac booked the deal he found through Opodo but I never tend to trust those professional photos you see on hotel websites because of the amount of times I have booked somewhere expecting a gorgeous room to find out that the picture was actually of an executive suite costing a cool £500 per night. But, let me tell you, this place was just as luxurious as the website suggests. The room is a beautiful turquoise colour with white details and it came with a balcony - which, I assume, all of the rooms do. It had a nicely decorated slate grey bathroom with a reasonably sized shower and all the toiletries you could ever need (including everything from a mini toothbrush to a shoe shiner). The room also came with a fridge but, unfortunately, no tea and coffee making facilities (although the bar staff were more than happy to provide us with hot water and milk for Ava whenever we asked free of charge). The best thing about the room had to be the TV though. It had BBC1, BBC2, ITV, and CBeebies on it which was an absolute godsend as it meant that Ava could fall asleep watching her favourite programmes which greatly decreased her tantrum count.




The food
As part of our deal, we had breakfast included but I can fully say that we would have upgraded to half board if possible. There were so many options for the breakfast. You could have everything from churros with chocolate sauce to scrambled eggs and chorizo. And that is not even scratching the surface of the options. There was so much fruit, so many pastries, at least 6 varieties of milk for my diary-avoiding pals. And there was something new everyday. My favourite had to be the boiled potatoes with herbs they served one morning as my morning sickness was playing up but those potatoes soon settled my stomach. I honestly can't think of anything that was lacking at all.

One evening, we opted to pay extra and have the buffet dinner. It was $20 per adult but I can honestly say that it was worth it. They had a huge variety of veggie, meat, and fish dishes as well as a huge salad station and a whole corner dedicated to desserts and cheeseboards. I really went in on the cold foods whilst Isaac devoured a whole lot of rice and curried veg and fish of every kind.

In terms of drinks, there were a good amount of options at the bar. As I can't drink and Isaac chooses not to, we didn't really explore them very well but we did give an alcohol-free Pina Colada a go which, if I remember rightly, costed about $5 each. It was lovely and fresh and fruity but maybe a little sweet. I wouldn't have minded trying out their alcohol-free Mojito or San Francisco either.



The facilities
The hotel itself isn't the hugest in comparison to many hotels and resorts you will find in Mallorca. It had 6 floors, a bar, a restaurant located downstairs, a luggage room, an indoors pool, and an outdoors pool with sun loungers dotted around it. My one issue with the pools were that they were absolutely freezing! I guess, they don't heat them but rather let the sun heat them. As we travelled at the start of the season (May), the sun hadn't really worked its magic yet. As Isaac put it, the indoors pool was like something out of a bushtucker trial. Ava loved the indoors pool though. Despite the coldness, it was quite nice to have a dip and, most days, we had the pool entirely to ourselves which was nice as it meant no-one had to see me wincing as I lowered myself into the icy pool or hear the words that I uttered as I lowered myself into said icy pool.


The atmosphere
I think one thing that every parent worries about when travelling with a toddler is how the hotel is going to react to said toddler. I mean, you never know whether people will treat your child running around like a nuisance or if they will be accommodating to the additional needs a child brings. But, I have to say, the staff at BQ Apolo were what really made the trip - especially the restaurant staff. I have never seen people go out of their way to make such a fuss over Ava and make her feel really special - especially when she has already approached them at least 50 times that day to say 'hi'. The staff, in general, were just so lovely. As it was my birthday on the penultimate day of our trip, they gave me a big slice of cake with a candle in it at breakfast and, when we returned to our rooms, we found a bottle of Cava and two chocolates had been left for us with a note (in German but that's not a problem for this German speaker *hair flick*) wishing me a very happy birthday. Although I couldn't drink the Cava (I left it with a note in Spanish for the housekeeper to take home), it was such a lovely touch and made my day even more special.



Location
The hotel was located just off of the Can Pastilla beach and had lots of little shops and restaurants nearby. There was also a bus stop about 5 minutes walk from the hotel that could take you into the capital city of Palma within 20 minutes. The hotel was 10 minutes taxi journey from Palma Airport. It was really nicely located as Can Pastilla isn't overly hectic or wild like Magaluf but it is close to Palma and has so much to do nearby too.

Honestly, I can't say enough good things about this hotel. There were very few things that I would change about our stay and the staff really went above and beyond to make our stay special which means so much to me.

You may also enjoy:
Our Stay At Hampton By Hilton In Edinburgh's West End
A Local's Guide To Visiting Devon
Berlin Travel Guide
Everything We Ate In Berlin
Cardiff Travel Guide

What with all the pregnancy posts I have been writing lately, I feel like this blog is starting to miss a little something. Or, should I say, a little someone? That someone being my tearaway toddler Ava!

Yes, the mum guilt even extends to which child I am choosing to write about on the blog. Even though I have kinda told myself to keep the Ava content limited, it's really about time that I write a whole post all about her, right? I mean, she is basically my shadow in real life so it is only fair to give her the opportunity to make herself known here too.

Milestones
So, let's start with the basics. Last time I wrote about Ava, she had started weaning and wasn't having a great time with it (crazy as I can't seem to stop eating yet she can't seem to even start). Unfortunately, not much has changed. She just hates food (apart from chocolate obvs) and it does still feel like a bit of a battle to get her to eat as much as I would like her to but now, I guess, I have gotten used to her patterns and know how and when she is most likely to eat more and we just work with that. And, if all else fails, I tell her that slice of roast beef in front of her is made of chocolate and watch her shove it into her mouth and swallow it whole before realising it definitely isn't chocolate. Parenting 101.

She is doing pretty fab with the other milestones though. She is walking really well - if we go out just in our town, we leave the buggy home and just put her harness on her to avoid her running for the hills the second I open the front door (kinda insulting really). And her speech is getting there. She has started saying 'no' very occasionally (including when anyone other than her tries to hug me) and she also knows 'hi', 'bye', 'baby', 'three', and 'bird'. She understands a lot more though. I can give her instructions like to put her shoes on and she will go and get her shoes and Isaac and I have to now spell out some words in case she hears them (like when it is nearing bedtime and I ask Isaac to prepare her M-I-L-K which she will demand the second she knows it is coming her way).


Character
I am absolutely loving this age because her character is really shining through - and what a character she is! She is the most confident child you will ever meet. She says 'hi' to everyone in the street and runs up to cats and dogs saying 'awh babyyy' trying to cuddle them. She is an absolute delight to be around. That's not to say that she doesn't have her off moments. She can be very whingey when she isn't getting her own way but 9 times out of 10 a bit of Peppa Pig and a cuddle soon solves that.

One thing I wasn't prepared for though was quite how much energy she has. She wants to walk everywhere and will rarely sit down quietly and watch TV for longer than ten minutes. She loves being on the go and taking everything in. Which, as you can imagine, is lovely but totally exhausting for me too.

Looking forward
I don't think Ava has quite grasped the fact that her position as only child is soon to be toppled. She does kiss my bump and say 'baby' but she also flashes her belly at anyone and everyone saying 'baby' too so I can't really count that as her totally getting this whole pregnancy thing. She loves babies though so I am confident she won't be too unhappy when the baby does arrive. My only worry is that she is quite possessive over me and likes to have my full attention so I'm unsure how she will take to having to share my time a bit more. We are considering starting her in nursery soon so she gets used to not always having me by her side 24/7 and so she can have more interaction with other kids.

But, in case you haven't guessed it yet, I think Ava is pretty awesome (I know all mums think that about their kids) and I feel truly blessed to have such a lovely little lady in my life - and constantly by my side.

You may also enjoy:
My 24 Hour Labour Story
Ava Is One!
Things I Wish I'd Been Told About The Newborn Stage
How I Found Out I Was Pregnant

An Ava Update


What with all the pregnancy posts I have been writing lately, I feel like this blog is starting to miss a little something. Or, should I say, a little someone? That someone being my tearaway toddler Ava!

Yes, the mum guilt even extends to which child I am choosing to write about on the blog. Even though I have kinda told myself to keep the Ava content limited, it's really about time that I write a whole post all about her, right? I mean, she is basically my shadow in real life so it is only fair to give her the opportunity to make herself known here too.

Milestones
So, let's start with the basics. Last time I wrote about Ava, she had started weaning and wasn't having a great time with it (crazy as I can't seem to stop eating yet she can't seem to even start). Unfortunately, not much has changed. She just hates food (apart from chocolate obvs) and it does still feel like a bit of a battle to get her to eat as much as I would like her to but now, I guess, I have gotten used to her patterns and know how and when she is most likely to eat more and we just work with that. And, if all else fails, I tell her that slice of roast beef in front of her is made of chocolate and watch her shove it into her mouth and swallow it whole before realising it definitely isn't chocolate. Parenting 101.

She is doing pretty fab with the other milestones though. She is walking really well - if we go out just in our town, we leave the buggy home and just put her harness on her to avoid her running for the hills the second I open the front door (kinda insulting really). And her speech is getting there. She has started saying 'no' very occasionally (including when anyone other than her tries to hug me) and she also knows 'hi', 'bye', 'baby', 'three', and 'bird'. She understands a lot more though. I can give her instructions like to put her shoes on and she will go and get her shoes and Isaac and I have to now spell out some words in case she hears them (like when it is nearing bedtime and I ask Isaac to prepare her M-I-L-K which she will demand the second she knows it is coming her way).


Character
I am absolutely loving this age because her character is really shining through - and what a character she is! She is the most confident child you will ever meet. She says 'hi' to everyone in the street and runs up to cats and dogs saying 'awh babyyy' trying to cuddle them. She is an absolute delight to be around. That's not to say that she doesn't have her off moments. She can be very whingey when she isn't getting her own way but 9 times out of 10 a bit of Peppa Pig and a cuddle soon solves that.

One thing I wasn't prepared for though was quite how much energy she has. She wants to walk everywhere and will rarely sit down quietly and watch TV for longer than ten minutes. She loves being on the go and taking everything in. Which, as you can imagine, is lovely but totally exhausting for me too.

Looking forward
I don't think Ava has quite grasped the fact that her position as only child is soon to be toppled. She does kiss my bump and say 'baby' but she also flashes her belly at anyone and everyone saying 'baby' too so I can't really count that as her totally getting this whole pregnancy thing. She loves babies though so I am confident she won't be too unhappy when the baby does arrive. My only worry is that she is quite possessive over me and likes to have my full attention so I'm unsure how she will take to having to share my time a bit more. We are considering starting her in nursery soon so she gets used to not always having me by her side 24/7 and so she can have more interaction with other kids.

But, in case you haven't guessed it yet, I think Ava is pretty awesome (I know all mums think that about their kids) and I feel truly blessed to have such a lovely little lady in my life - and constantly by my side.

You may also enjoy:
My 24 Hour Labour Story
Ava Is One!
Things I Wish I'd Been Told About The Newborn Stage
How I Found Out I Was Pregnant

Tomorrow I am having my first scan and I am so nervous. I don't remember being this nervous the first time around. But, saying that, this pregnancy has been rather different to my first. I mean, I remember even saying in my first pregnancy that 'my body just knows how to be pregnant' because I hardly had any sickness (I know, I want to punch me too). This pregnancy has taught me that my body is just very mad at this whole situation and isn't doing much to keep that a secret from me. But, yknow what, I am starting to feel a bit better. So much so that I think I have my first craving: pickled onions. Those little things are insane. And crunchy. And gorgeous. Yum.

Anyway, I wanted to jot down a few predictions before I go for my scan tomorrow so that we can look back on them and either hail me as some kinda prophet or laugh at me. Probably the latter, to be fair.

So, when I first realised I was pregnant, I had a funny feeling that it may be twins because I had been ravenously hungry and had put on a fair amount of weight. The following weeks strengthened that thought because the intense nausea coupled with intense hunger made me think that there couldn't just be one baby in there causing this amount of disruption to my life. I thought I would probably have twin girls.

Now I have changed my mind. Now I think I am just carrying one baby. And I think it is a girl - a very big girl. I am predicting a huge child. I am so sure of it being a girl that I have already chosen a name.

So, by tomorrow, I will know just how many babies are living inside me but I won't know the sex for a little while yet. But, as I will be posting this in a few weeks, you guys will probably already have the answers anyway. So, drop a comment below laughing at me over my twins predictions (please, God, one baby is enough) or consoling me as I panic buy wooden planks from Homebase and attempt to build multiple cots for my offspring.

All jokes aside though, I kinda want to be a twin mum. Imagine the cute matching outfits.

You may also enjoy:
Pregnancy Diaries #1
Pregnancy Diaries #2
How I Found Out I Was Pregnant With Baby #2
Can Maternity Clothes Actually Look Cute?

Pregnancy Diaries #3: Predictions


Tomorrow I am having my first scan and I am so nervous. I don't remember being this nervous the first time around. But, saying that, this pregnancy has been rather different to my first. I mean, I remember even saying in my first pregnancy that 'my body just knows how to be pregnant' because I hardly had any sickness (I know, I want to punch me too). This pregnancy has taught me that my body is just very mad at this whole situation and isn't doing much to keep that a secret from me. But, yknow what, I am starting to feel a bit better. So much so that I think I have my first craving: pickled onions. Those little things are insane. And crunchy. And gorgeous. Yum.

Anyway, I wanted to jot down a few predictions before I go for my scan tomorrow so that we can look back on them and either hail me as some kinda prophet or laugh at me. Probably the latter, to be fair.

So, when I first realised I was pregnant, I had a funny feeling that it may be twins because I had been ravenously hungry and had put on a fair amount of weight. The following weeks strengthened that thought because the intense nausea coupled with intense hunger made me think that there couldn't just be one baby in there causing this amount of disruption to my life. I thought I would probably have twin girls.

Now I have changed my mind. Now I think I am just carrying one baby. And I think it is a girl - a very big girl. I am predicting a huge child. I am so sure of it being a girl that I have already chosen a name.

So, by tomorrow, I will know just how many babies are living inside me but I won't know the sex for a little while yet. But, as I will be posting this in a few weeks, you guys will probably already have the answers anyway. So, drop a comment below laughing at me over my twins predictions (please, God, one baby is enough) or consoling me as I panic buy wooden planks from Homebase and attempt to build multiple cots for my offspring.

All jokes aside though, I kinda want to be a twin mum. Imagine the cute matching outfits.

You may also enjoy:
Pregnancy Diaries #1
Pregnancy Diaries #2
How I Found Out I Was Pregnant With Baby #2
Can Maternity Clothes Actually Look Cute?
[gifted ad]

Pregnancy does wild things to your body - and your perception of yourself too. Everyone seems to have an opinion on whether you are carrying low or high or whether you are showing early or hardly showing at all. But, despite the running commentary on how you body looks from everyone you know - and even some you don't - it can also feel super liberating to be pregnant. In my first pregnancy, I remember feeling so good about my body. I loved that my stomach was meant to be big rather than opting for clothes that hid that little bulge of lower belly pudge that my pre-pregnancy self felt super self-conscious about. I loved that my body had a function and it was doing something amazing. And, this time around, I feel much the same.

However, this time, I am a lot more determined to dress my pregnant body is clothes that make me feel just as confident. So, since I peed on a stick and found out I was carrying human life inside my stomach, I have spent a whole lot of time browsing online for the cutest maternity clothes money can buy - and adding up quite a sum in a few different online shopping baskets (I may need to take out a loan). Given my newfound dedication to maternity fashion, you guys can imagine how excited I was when Pink Blush got in touch and offered to gift me two items from their website. They are a US-based company but I can vouch for their super fast delivery service (can you believe I got these dresses in like 3 days after placing my order?!) and, more importantly, for the cuteness of the dresses. Guys, both of the dresses have pockets. Need I say anymore?



They combine all the comfort that you need as a preggo lady with the fashionable designs you want. It took me a fair while to narrow down my choices to just two items but, in the end, I went for these two dresses. Although they were closely contended with a cute pair of blue rinse ripped leg jeans and some adorable blouses.

I went for this first dress as the print is just so me. I love a dark floral print and the cut is gorgeous. It comes in just above the bump (empire line, I guess) and skims over your bump before ending just past your knees. It is quite fitted on the top with a slightly rounded neckline and the sleeves cover your upper arms. The upper part of the dress is double layered so there is no chance of any sheerness (no one needs to see my Bridget Jones bra) and, guys, I just love it. I will deffo be wearing this well into post-partum.



I chose the second dress as it is a little different to anything else I own. The striped pattern isn't something I usually opt for but, in this colour palette, I was really into it. And I absolutely adored the details on the sleeves and hemline. I feel like this dress is so fun and the colour is beautiful. But the best thing about this dress is the material. I don't what it is made from but it is so soft. It is literally like a dress made from clouds. I am obsessed.

So, to answer the question 'can maternity clothes actually look cute?', I wanna say a big, fat yes. Especially if you shop at Pink Blush.

You may also like:
Maternity Clothes and The Self-Confidence Crisis
An Open Letter To My Pregnancy Body
Support Other Women And Their Choices
How I Found Out I Was Pregnant With Baby #2

Can Maternity Clothes Actually Look Cute?

[gifted ad]

Pregnancy does wild things to your body - and your perception of yourself too. Everyone seems to have an opinion on whether you are carrying low or high or whether you are showing early or hardly showing at all. But, despite the running commentary on how you body looks from everyone you know - and even some you don't - it can also feel super liberating to be pregnant. In my first pregnancy, I remember feeling so good about my body. I loved that my stomach was meant to be big rather than opting for clothes that hid that little bulge of lower belly pudge that my pre-pregnancy self felt super self-conscious about. I loved that my body had a function and it was doing something amazing. And, this time around, I feel much the same.

However, this time, I am a lot more determined to dress my pregnant body is clothes that make me feel just as confident. So, since I peed on a stick and found out I was carrying human life inside my stomach, I have spent a whole lot of time browsing online for the cutest maternity clothes money can buy - and adding up quite a sum in a few different online shopping baskets (I may need to take out a loan). Given my newfound dedication to maternity fashion, you guys can imagine how excited I was when Pink Blush got in touch and offered to gift me two items from their website. They are a US-based company but I can vouch for their super fast delivery service (can you believe I got these dresses in like 3 days after placing my order?!) and, more importantly, for the cuteness of the dresses. Guys, both of the dresses have pockets. Need I say anymore?



They combine all the comfort that you need as a preggo lady with the fashionable designs you want. It took me a fair while to narrow down my choices to just two items but, in the end, I went for these two dresses. Although they were closely contended with a cute pair of blue rinse ripped leg jeans and some adorable blouses.

I went for this first dress as the print is just so me. I love a dark floral print and the cut is gorgeous. It comes in just above the bump (empire line, I guess) and skims over your bump before ending just past your knees. It is quite fitted on the top with a slightly rounded neckline and the sleeves cover your upper arms. The upper part of the dress is double layered so there is no chance of any sheerness (no one needs to see my Bridget Jones bra) and, guys, I just love it. I will deffo be wearing this well into post-partum.



I chose the second dress as it is a little different to anything else I own. The striped pattern isn't something I usually opt for but, in this colour palette, I was really into it. And I absolutely adored the details on the sleeves and hemline. I feel like this dress is so fun and the colour is beautiful. But the best thing about this dress is the material. I don't what it is made from but it is so soft. It is literally like a dress made from clouds. I am obsessed.

So, to answer the question 'can maternity clothes actually look cute?', I wanna say a big, fat yes. Especially if you shop at Pink Blush.

You may also like:
Maternity Clothes and The Self-Confidence Crisis
An Open Letter To My Pregnancy Body
Support Other Women And Their Choices
How I Found Out I Was Pregnant With Baby #2

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