Sleepless nights? You need The Baby Bedtime Book

Sleepless nights? You need The Baby Bedtime Book

We first met the lovely Fi, author of The Baby Bedtime Book: Say goodnight to sleepless nights, a year ago during a couple of blogging events and the Mad Blog Awards. We both agreed she was incredibly lovely and were excited when she asked if we would like to be some of the first to read her new book. Of course we couldn’t refuse and coincidentally the book arrived in our inbox around the same time we decided to get our little man to self settle.

Fi has a long history of looking after children as a nanny and nursery nurse and is also a mother to two adorable little people. She not only writes a blog, pens articles for websites and magazines, she also provides FREE parenting advice via her fab site Childcare is Fun.

I have no idea where she finds the time to be this awesome, but she managed to squeeze even more time out of her busy life to write her first book full of fantastic advice.

If you’re struggling with a baby who doesn’t sleep or even have a friend expecting a baby and you want to give them the gift of sleep, this is a great book. It’s an easy read, it never makes you feel like someones is preaching at you and is broken up into bitesize chapters packed with helpful advice. I really loved the little tidbits with fun hashtags like #booksmakebedtimehappy.

We co-slept with our little man from a few weeks old and were growing concerned that he couldn’t self settle. Cut to 20 months old and each night we would take it in turns to lay with him as he fell asleep, before transferring him in to his cot. This meant laying with him up to 2 hours some nights. We decided to bit the bullet a month ago and try to get him to self settle in his cot. Again we took turns doing the bedtime routine and getting him into his cot.

A fab tip Fi writes about is the Bum Shuffle, where you gradually move towards the door each night as your little one falls asleep. I adapted this slightly and am happy to report that our little man was self settling almost straight away. We have the odd night where he comes into bed with us around 5am, but almost every other night is spent in his own cot. Some mornings we end up having to wake him up!


I highly recommend The Baby Bedtime Book if you are struggling without sleep due to your little one, even if you find some thing doesn’t work for you, the next page offers more advice to help.  So what are you waiting for, order now for £9.99 and start getting some more sleep in no time!

*We were kindly given a digital copy to read, but because Fi is awesome we wanted to share our views.

How to Win Friends and Influence People – YOC Bookclub

How to Win Friends and Influence People – YOC Bookclub

At the start of the year Lauren from Real Housewife of Suffolk and I decided we were going to start a Year Of Change Book club. One of the books I really wanted to read again this year was How to win friends and influence people by Dale Carnegie.

I read the book a few years ago and found it really interesting. A lot of the information shared was common sense, but some of the tips and anedotes really struck a chord with me. So at the start of Jan, I found my well read, dog eared copy which I’d purchased in a charity shop and started reading it again with a pencil in hand ready to underline, make notes and highlight chapters.

How to win friends and influence people is referred to as one of the best selling self help books ever published, it’s sold over 15 million copies worldwide and seems to have some what of a cult following. I think I can proudly confirm I’m now a member of this cult. I know some don’t like the book and find it difficult to relate to due to how old the book is, but for me I found it talks to the part of my brain which is working on change.

How to win friends and influence people

The chapters are divided into sections with anecdotes and teachings which target different principles. At the end of the chapter you are left with a principle to think about and in my case underline and repeat to myself over and over. One of the principles affected me more than all the others. I have made sure I followed this principle as much as I could in Jan, “don’t complain, condemn or critise”. We can all be guilty of all three, if  you’re having a bad day it can be easy to moan, or tell someone they’ve done something wrong. But why make someone else feel bad just because you feel a bit crabby. Well it doesn’t take long to realise that not being negative towards people can actually make them happier around you and like you more.
principles how to win friends

I didn’t get to finish the book this month, but I have read it in full previously and know I will continue to pick it up and read further. If you wish to join our book club, we have a facebook group, just search for YOCBookclub.

Year of change, book club.

Beano celebrates its 75th anniversary

Beano celebrates its 75th anniversary

I’ve been a Beano fan since I was very small. Each week my parents bought me a Beano magazine and every Christmas I received a Beano Annual in my Beano sack. I had a Beano duvet set, school bag, pencil-case, mugs, t-shirts and many more items to show my love. When I heard the news that Beano was celebrating its 75th Anniversary, I just knew I had to get involved. My Beano sack had already been removed from the loft so that we could start filling it with presents to take round to my parents on Christmas Eve. It doesn’t look bad considering it is approximately 20 years old.

Beano Christmas Sack

Beano & Dandy annual

Reading the Beano was my little escape. Each Thursday I sat on the sofa and read my copy from front to back. My favourite characters were Minnie the Minx, Roger the Dodger and of course Dennis and Gnasher. A few years ago my mum treated me to the special annual pictured above. Which brought back many fun memories. So when this years annual arrived in the post I was really happy to give it a read.

Beano Annual 2014

The Beano is one of those cartoons that appeals to all ages. When we visited my family for a Christmas party a few weeks ago, my dad and niece sat reading it together. It’s a timeless classic that I can see myself introducing our little man to as soon as he can read. This year’s annual features the usual crew and also a few new additions I wasn’t familiar with, but they fit well with the rest of the team. I also loved the groan worthy joke pages and fun prank suggestions. It’s something most 6 – 106 year olds would love. I don’t think I will ever outgrow the Beano, in fact I might continue collecting the annuals for M to have when he grows up.

Beano annual inside


The Beano 2014 Annual is available in all good book stores RRP £7.99.

*We were sent the annual for review, all nostalgia is my own.

BabyCalm: A Guide for Calmer Babies and Happier Parents – Book Review

BabyCalm: A Guide for Calmer Babies and Happier Parents – Book Review

A while ago we were kindly sent a copy of BabyCalm: A Guide for Calmer Babies and Happier Parents to review. At first I was a little hesitant to read another baby guide book but once I started reading I was glad I had. It was the first book I’d read which shared my views and opinions.


BabyCalm: A Guide for Calmer Babies and Happier Parents - Book Review -

The book is divided in to easy to consume sections and once I started reading I found myself absorbed and wanting to read more. One of my favourite chapters to read was ‘A Toolbox of calming techniques’. One of the suggestions made was Babywearing, if you follow our blog you will know that C and I are very vocal of our love of Babywearing. Since we first started wearing M it was obvious it had a fantastic calming effect on him and still to this day he enjoys the closeness and soothing effect Babywearing provides. I loved the illustrations included on how to wrap a sling, it can be daunting using a wrap sling for the first time, but I recon armed with this book you could manage with a little practice.


BabyCalm: A Guide for Calmer Babies and Happier Parents - Book Review -

Another section I loved was on co sleeping, again C and I co sleep as we feel it’s best for all of us. I enjoyed reading someone else’s views and story of their successful co sleeping relationship. Quite often we hear the phrase “You’re making a rod for your own back” it was quite nice to hear someone say they hadn’t made that rod.

BabyCalm is a nice mixture of real stories, well researched information and bite size bullet points.

I wouldn’t say we followed all the information in the book as we’ve very much gone with the flow in regards to parenting. But I do think its a great guide for new parents and even parents with children already. I would definitely loan my copy to friends or family who were expecting. It’s the sort of book i find myself picking up every now and then and refreshing what I’ve read already. If you wish to buy a copy just click here.

*We were kindly sent a copy of this book for free.


Top That Publishing – Book Review

Top That Publishing – Book Review

The lovely Top That Publishing sent us 3 books to read and review, many moons ago. We had great ambitions of reading them to Monkey and him loving them. But he wasn't really that responsive, so to give them a fair review we waited until he was able to hold concentration and react to our voices.

The three books we were sent are called – Yappy, Happy, Dilly Dog – The Froobles, Little Jack Potato and the big surprise – Five Little Penguins.

Top That Publishing - Book Review -


The first book I looked at with Monkey was Yappy Happy Dilly Dog. I enjoyed the story and loved interacting with him with the puppet. The book allowed you to open each page and put your hand in to the dogs mouth to make it move. I've seen a few of the puppet books before and always wanted to get one when I had a child. It certainly made the story telling fun and I'm sure as Monkey grows he will enjoy the puppet more.

The Froobles didn't really hold Monkey's attention. C really didn't like this book as she felt it was kind of sinister. I don't wish to ruin any of the stories but this one involved a lesson being taught and neither of us agreed with how it was written. I've since found the Froobles app and looked up other books and decided we may have enjoyed the Froobles more if we'd been sent a different one. But this is one book we won't be reading to Monkey as he grows up.

Five Little Penguins was another odd one. Odd in the sense that it referenced one of the penguins getting eaten. Now I'm all for children understanding the circle of life and learning about food chains, but penguins getting eaten in a children's book, not for us. I enjoyed the rest of the story, but C just couldn't recover from the trauma**. On a positive note M loved touching the raised penguins and it even held his attention. We now read it with an alternative less traumatic scenario.

If I had to choose a favourite it would definitely be Yappy Dappy Dilly Dog, I can see us reading this for man years to come.

*we were sent these books free of charge for the purpose of review.

** C is an incredibly sensitive soul and is easily effected by particular topics. Please source other reviews of others with less of a sensitive disposition before you make any decisions. ;)