Our April

Our April

I’ve recently seen a few people do the month in review Blog Posts and I love the idea. It’s so nice to have a record & see all the things you have got up to. All the little days out get forgotten so it’s lovely to look back on.

We started the month with Easter Sunday, we had dinner at my Mum & Dad’s and a park trip to burn off the millions of eggs Finn had ate.

We then had an amazing swimming lesson from Finn, which was a big turning point. He was really nervous and held onto his teacher when he first started but this was the point he slowly began to make progress and gain confidence m.

We had a trip to Bents Garden Centre in Warrington which Finn loved, there’s a fab park & a lovely cafe.

I then ended up in hospital for 2 nights with tonsillitis, I think though I was really run down. I’d been working loads & doing a lot of late nights & early starts. Luckily a few days later we went on our Amazing holiday to Costa Teguise in Lanzarote. We stayed at the HD Beach resort which you can read about here.

When we come home we met my Mum & Dad in Chorlton & went for food & a play in the park.

Another day another park visit, followed by Finn’s favourite coffee & cake.

We went to Messy Mallie’s which is about 20 minutes away from us in Buckley. It was brilliant and Finn loved painting his own money box.

After the Easter holidays we were entitled to more hours at nursery. I was sad in one way as Finn stared doing more days so we lost a day in the week together. It’s meant though that I’ve gone from doing 4/5 late nights a week to 1/2. I’ve loved the little things like us having tea together as a family & doing bath, story & bed time.

Finn’s first go at Crazy Golf, followed by a Wagamama’s.

A visit to Little Al’s Urban farm in Eastham. We love it here.

Yet more amazing swimming from Finn, he’s managing to swim now with just the woggle & not holding on to his teacher.

Finally a zoo trip, we are members of Chester Zoo so we go all the time. This time Finn played in the sand & water for over an hour.

Disneyland Paris, the best rides, attractions & shows for a 3 year old

Disneyland Paris, the best rides, attractions & shows for a 3 year old

Finn was about 27 months the first time we went to Disneyland and turned 3 the second time we were there. These are the main rides, attractions & shows he loved & were the most suitable for his age.

Alice’s Curious Labyrinth- We all loved this where you work your way around Alice’s labyrinth to get to the Queen of heart castle. The view from the top around the park are amazing.

Buzz Lightyear Laser Blast- Finn’s a big toy story fan so this was one of his favourites. The queues can get quite big so we went in this using a fast pass and during extra magic hours.

Cars quatre rallye- Finn loved the cars theming of this one, I get quite travel sick so sat this one out. Queues were normally about 10/15 minutes.

Casey Jr. – this is a lovely little train ride, It was really quiet whenever we went on this.

Disneyland Railroad- We loved this, we went all the way round the park on it and you get some really good views. You can also use it to get to the different areas of the park. It always seemed to be really busy even in quiet times but we went on first thing one morning and the queues weren’t as big.

Dumbo- Finn loved flying round on the elephant, the queues never seemed to be really big for this.

It’s a small world- My favourite, even though you end up stuck with the tune in your head for days. The queues were never massive but if you stand near here to watch the parade you get a good view for that & can then walk pretty much on it’s a small world.

Le Carrousel de Lancelot- a traditional merry-go- round, Finn really enjoyed this and there was rarely a big queue.

Flying carpets over Agrabah- this was in the Studio’s you fly on a magic carpet on an Aladdin themed rides. It can get busy.

Mad Hatter’s tea cups- this was another of Finn’s favourites, the cup of tea ride he called it. This was another quiet ride.

Orbitron- Here you can ride in a rocket, the queues for this one always seem longer than they say so be prepared to wait but Finn loved it.

Peter Pan’s flight – this is a lovely ride but can get really busy. We got fast passes for this which I’d definitely recommend doing.

Pirates of the Caribbean – I was really nervous about this one as I though Finn would be scared but apart from a few drops it was quite gentle & we all loved it. We were quite lucky to just walk on this a few times.

Ratatouille- this was another favourite of ours, it gets busy but you can get fast pass. There is WiFi in the studios so we used the Disneyland app to check wait times and managed to just walk onto this one day.

Slinky Dog- Finn loved this being a toy story fan and we managed to just walk on it quite a few times. I suffer with motion sickness and this did make me feel a bit sick.

Thunder Mesa riverboat Landing- I loved this boat ride & definitely recommend you go on this. It’s a lovely little ride round which you don’t expect & has loads of little things to look at.

Toy soldiers parachute drop- I thought this would be really scary but we all loved it, you also get a fab but quick view of the castle! It can get busy.

Moteurs Action Stunt Show- This was a massive hit, Finn’s face when lightening came out was one of the highlights of our trip.

Mickey and the Magician- This is a lovely show and definitely worth going to if it’s on, true Disney magic.

Mickey presents Happy Anniversary Disneyland Paris- a fab show located on the stage near the castle. Finn loved all the Characters and them all waving.

Cadbury’s Easter Egg Hunt at Erddig Wrexham

Cadbury’s Easter Egg Hunt at Erddig Wrexham

We recently joined the National trust hoping to have lots of family days out. We are quite lucky that we are within an hour of some amazing National trust properties. We are also planning some U.K. breaks this year so it will be handy to take our cards with us incase there is any properties close by.

I joined by Direct Debit so pay £10 a month for a family membership, I like this option to spread the cost & knowing we can always have a free/cheap day out.

Over the Easter Weekend we decided to do the Cadbury’s Egg Hunt at Erddig in Wrexham. This is the first time we have visited and we loved it. We were with friends so had a few children in the group so just stayed in the ground. The gardens are beautiful with loads of trees, flowers & a lake. The kids loved running around and it was all really safe for them.

Our favourite bit was there 2.5 Hectare natural play area the Wolf’s Den. It was brilliant and I reckon we spent a good hour in there, we could have been there longer as well if we didn’t want to finish the egg hunt. There’s den building, loads of stepping stones, a wooden play shop, a rope swing & plenty more. They run activities in here throughout the year like tree climbing & den building so we will definitely be back to try some of these.

We didn’t get a chance to try any of the cafe facilities (except for a coffee, which was a good strong coffee) but we will definitely be trying these next time we are back as they looked really good.

We all really enjoyed the Easter egg hunt, we were given a map and had to follow the trail looking for signs of Spring. At the end they kids were all given a full size Cadbury’s egg.

We really enjoyed our visit to Erddig and will definitely be back soon to make the most of our membership.

The Enchantment of Chester Zoo 

The Enchantment of Chester Zoo 

In the run up to Halloween Chester Zoo staged a special event ‘The Enchantment of Chester Zoo’ as members we were able to attend this event for free. 

The Zoo had been cast under the spell of an evil sorcerer and it was our job to help save it. The event started with an introduction by various characters to explain what had happened and how we could save the zoo. This was brilliant and so interactive. 

We had to visit 3 animals the tarantulas, aardvarks and the bats learning a fact at each animal in order to receive some potion. At the end all the potion was added to a big cauldron and we received a certificate to thank us for saving the zoo. 

Finn really enjoyed the day, even though he didn’t fully understand the tasks he loved all the characters and it was an opportunity for us to visit animals we wouldn’t normally go to. 

The Autumn & early winter (as well as spring) are definitely my favourite times to visit the zoo as it is quieter and looks beautiful with the changing seasons. I’d definitely recommend a visit at this time of year if you can. 

The Irish Fairy Door Company 

The Irish Fairy Door Company 

I was recently sent The Irish Fairy Door to review and for me and Finn to try out. I love this idea and can imagine as well as being fun it is an amazing way to keep your child’s imagination alive and explore the magic of childhood. 


We started by decorating the Fairy Door. I gave Finn total free reign of this ( despite having a design in my head ha). He loved it, he painted and coloured in the door with the provided paints & felt tips. He then stuck on all the decorations. 

The next step was to name & register our Fairy. We named him Bing (you are able to choose the sex). I registered him online and then downloaded the app. This way we can receive Fairy updates and inspiration for fun activities to do.

We then set up our door with the provided stepping stones & magic key, we left Bing a note welcoming him to our home. During the night Bing took the note & magic key so he is now able to enter when he likes. 

The suggestions given range from leaving your tooth for the Tooth fairy or leaving your fairy pictures or gifts. You can even leave your fairy your worries, a useful way for older children to learn to express their emotions. 


Whilst Finn is a little young to fully understand the concept it is definitely something we will continue to use over time. He still loved decorating and setting up the fairy door. It will make a lovely gift for any children in your life. 

Finn’s 16 Month Update 

Finn’s 16 Month Update 

Finn is now definitely  a toddler, his little personality is developing more and more and he knows what he wants. He’s starting  to show the first signs of tantrums. To balance this out he has a brilliant sense of humour which is just developing more and more. 


 Finn’s  bedtime routine has gone completely out of the window. I’m not sure if it’s a regression or the warmer weather & lighter nights. He used to be asleep by around 7pm but now its more like 9/10pm. He naps for about 2 hours a day but without this in the day he would be grumpy. 



 He is now eating bigger size portions but will occasionally just graze throughout the day. His favourite food at the moment is pasta. He loves pesto pasta or pasta with tuna and sweet corn or peas. He still drinks quite a bit of milk in a sippy cup, water and the occasional juice. 



Finn is saying quite a few words now including; Hiya, Night Night, All Gone, Goal, Baby, Plane, Dogga (for Dog) and Got. 



His favourite toys are a wooden plane, footballs and his garden toys especially the slide. 

He weighs 28lbs, is in 18-24 month clothes with the odd 12-18 months still fitting and is in a size 5 shoe. 


He has 8 teeth, 4 at the bottom and 4 at the top. He also seems to be getting both sets of molars as well. 


Finn loves songs including the grand old duke of York and will try to do the actions and dance. 

He is a lot more confident walking and can walk for about 5-10 minutes at a time and is now starting to run. 


This month he has been to the sea life centre, the Zoo, a farm, the beach, gardening club and messy play. 

Picking the Right Nursery 

Picking the Right Nursery 

I’m not sure about anyone else but I found picking the right Nursery for Finn quite stressful. It’s scary the thought of leaving your baby with someone else. I couldn’t be any happier though with the choice we finally made for Finn. He has been at his current Nursery since he was 10 months old. I visited lots of different nursery’s and fell in love with this one. I just knew it was the right one. These are the tips I picked up from our experience or speaking to friends. Sorry this is quite a long one but hopefully you will find it useful. 

Show up unannounced  – always show up unannounced. That way you know they aren’t putting on an act. Any nursery will be happy to see you. I liked the fact they shown us round all the rooms and we’re happy to answer any questions. 

Menu’s & Food – This was really important to us. We are keen for Finn to try a wide variety of foods so I wanted the menu to be varied. I asked to see a sample menu when we visited. I loved that they served healthy snacks and encourage the children to be adventurous with food. 

Free Flow Play- Unless the weather is really bad the children are allowed to choose if they want to be out or inside. I love this as Finn loves playing outside and I think it is so important. 

Quality of toys- Learning through play is so crucial in the early years. I checked there was a wide variety of clean, safe and exciting toys. 

Routine- We mainly follow a baby led routine when it comes to naps and weaning. I visited some nurserys that insisted  on set nap times. I wasn’t keen on this as I prefer to just pick up on Finn’s signals that he is tired. Our Nursery were prepared to follow this. They were also happy to support us in Baby Led Weaning. 

Settling in Sessions- these should ideally be free while you see if the nursery is a good fit for you all. We had 2 settling in sessions which made me feel really happy about leaving Finn there for the first time. 

Feedback to home- I love that nursery give us a journal at the end of the day with what Finn has ate, his naps, what he’s drunk, nappy changes & what he has been up to. It’s lovely to know what they have been doing while they have been at nursery.  

Ofsted- I read the latest reports of all the nurserys I planned on visiting. I know a lot of it is just a snapshot of that day but I felt it was important for the nursery we picked to have a good rating. 

Ask Friends & Family- I asked around for any recommendations. A few people recommend the nursery Finn currently attends. It makes you feel more reassured knowing other people are happy. 

What would be your top tips for picking the right nursery? 

Messy Play 

Messy Play 

One of the Toddler  Groups we love is Messy Play , Finn absolutely loves it and has developed so much since we started going. When we first started he just used to put his hands in the paints but now he will hold the brush and crayons more confidently. We have been going for about 7 months now and he is so excited when we walk in the room and he can’t wait to get involved. 

First Class
Finn’s first class

The company is called Splat Messy play and I definitely recommend these if there is a group near you. Here’s the link if you want to take a look Splat Messy Play

Finn’s first class
Finn’s first Class

Sarah who runs the group we attend is brilliant, she always helps out with all the baby’s and is really imaginative with the different stations. Each week is a different theme ranging from circus, teddy bears picnic, Mother’s Day etc.. There’s usually about 6 stations with a craft to take home. 

Loves getting messy
Planting Carrots

We love it and one massive plus is we can make all the mess we want else where. 

Playdough
Play Dough

Does anyone else  go to messy play classes? How do you find it? You can read all about other groups we attend here Baby Groups.

Food Play
Water Play
Gloop
Sensory Play
Painting
Craft Activity
Colouring
Painting
Planting
Mother’s Day Activity
Food Play

50 Things To Do Before You’re 11 and 3/4 

50 Things To Do Before You’re 11 and 3/4 

I recently came across an article all about the National Trust’s 50 things to do before you’re 11 and 3/4 and fell in love with the idea. 

I think with the increase of technology  some children never experience the really fun childhood milestones. I’m not saying I’m anti tv, iPads etc as Finn does watch some cartoons, and the iPad was a lifesaver on the plane. But  I’m really conscious of making sure Finn doesn’t use them too much as he grows up. I also think this list is a really fun way to have quality family time together. 

Here’s the list 


And here’s a link to the site 50 Things so you can have a look for yourself. 

Obviously Finn is still really little so there aren’t many we can complete at the moment but I’ll definitely be referring back to this list as time goes on. I know Stu will really enjoy doing these activities with Finn as well. 

Here’s some pictures from some  we’ve already ticked off,

3.  Camp out in the wild.

And – 23. Visit a farm 


41. Plant it , Grow it , Eat it 


Is anyone else following this list? I’d love to hear X 

Baby Groups 

Baby Groups 

I have a confession to make … I am a Baby group addict. I know some people I have spoke to say some groups are a waste of time and money for young babies but I loved getting out and about in the early days and chatting to other new Mum’s.

Finn enjoying the sensory room at our local childrens’s centre

You name it from baby massage, messy play, baby matters, Mummy  coffee mornings, rhyme time, Baby sensory, gardening club, swim a song, playgroup,  baby sign  we’ve done it.

Music Class

I like a routine (as much as possible with a young baby) and to be out and about,

so I think when Finn was first born I liked to know there was a group we could go to each day. We didn’t necessarily go to one every single day every week as I didn’t want to put too much pressure on myself, but I liked knowing there was the option. I live in Chester,  where I moved for Uni so found it good to meet new people with baby’s the same age. 

Baby Sensory

I know a lot of people don’t like attending because they feel shy about meeting other people, but I’ve always found everyone to be really friendly after all everyone is in the same boat. It really helps to have people going through the same experiences  to talk to. Plus there’s usually coffee ,always a bonus. 

Gardening Club

I found my local children’s centre, libraries, Facebook groups and Mum’s in the know (a Facebook page) best for finding groups. A lot of them were free or minimal charge as well. Now Finn is getting older and I’m back at work we do 2 classes a week (messy play & gardening club) which I will do a blog on soon. I found going to these groups has helped Finn to be confident around other babies and enjoy new experiences. 

Messy Play

If you’re feeling nervous about attending a group with your baby or toddler just give it a go us mums love talking about our baby’s so there’s always an ice breaker. 


Let me know what groups you love to attend as we are always on the look out for new ones to try. 

Messy Play
Baby Sensory