Wednesday 27 March 2019

REAL tips for flying with toddlers!

Flying with toddlers. Flying with a lap toddler.... it doesn't sound fun.

Thankfully, our first flight was only an hour and a half long, but that doesn't even begin to cover any of the time dragging them through check in, security, milling around the departure lounge, heading to the gate, boarding the plane, sitting on the plane before and after take off, waiting to collect luggage... you catch my drift.

Airports are bloody boring if you're under 5 and have no money or patience. They're even more dreadful for the parents who have to endure those bored little people for half a day, even when the flight is "only" an hour and a half.

I've read so many posts with top tips for flying with small children and toddlers, but none of them truly touched on all that travelling by plane encompasses, so let's delve in and I hope that by the end of this post, if you're planning on flying with children you either change your mind (retreat!) or have a little more faith that you'll manage it.

When you first arrive at the airport:

Check in and luggage, security and of course...lines. Quite a lot of airlines these days allow you to check in early, so if you aren't checking luggage, chances are you're far more savvy than I am and you get to head right over to security. We did have luggage to check, because I am an over packer (plus we were getting tags to check our prams in at the gate, thank you for this huge convenience easyjet!).

The most important thing at this point, is to keep your little ones from going mad while they wait, because chances are there's a queue. I found with my oldest (she's nearly 4) the best thing to keep her mind occupied, was to invent jobs for her. She had her own little suitcase, and it was her job to wheel that along for example. Throw as many snacks as you can at them while they wait, promise them there is a McDonalds in the fabled departure lounge, and tell them they can watch as much Peppa Pig as they want on your phone. 

Also, make sure they wee before you start to line up because I promise you, they will decide they need one. Right away. Right before your turn with the X-Ray machine (especially if they've had to chug their drinks so they don't get binned!)

Departure Lounge:

If you manage to wrangle them through the X-Ray machines in security without a meltdown as they bin their water bottle, you've made it to the departure lounge. If you are lucky, unlike me, the promised McDonalds will buy you another 45 minutes of entertainment and a new toy. There was not a Maccas in the lounge when we flew, we had to sadly persuade the kiddies that Pret was just as good. It wasn't.

We watched planes, we gave Isla the job of watching when the board had new things appear, and we watched as much Peppa Pig on mummy's phone as we liked. Honestly, I keep repeating it. I'm not a fan of screens- my two don't get to use my phone or tablets, and they don't have their own and won't for a while. In the car, I tell them to look out the window... but at the airport, you gotta do what you gotta do to get by and just give in. Your sanity will thank you.

When it's finally time to get down to the gate, don't assume you don't need to move instantly. Yes, you have around 40 minutes before it leaves and before I had children, that was enough time to buy a magazine and a Toblerone before I wondered lazily away from the shops.... move move move- do it. We got to around 3 gates away before Archer decided it was prime pooping time and ended up at the back of the line to get on that silly little bus, Isla was wandering along with her little suitcase as slowly as she could and we just made it before they started boarding children.

On the plane:

I had a lap toddler. Archer is under two, so he had to be strapped to me. I used Netflix to "wifi free" download as many cartoons as I could onto my phone, and stuck it inches from his face in an attempt to keep him happy. He was lucky enough to get a go in the pilots seat in the cockpit before we took off, which meant while Jack was upfront with him I could get the bags and belts and older child all ready and settled.

Stickers, snacks, colouring (don't get round pencils, get the ridged edge ones so they don't roll off!) and cartoons were our saviours. If you bring things for them to do, take into account that they only stay focused for around 5-10 minutes before getting fidgety again.

Let them watch as much Peppa Pig as they want.

Being honest, nothing will prepare you for flying with children for the first time. I am no expert, but we did survive and we didn't piss off the people sitting around us too much and we all landed fairly happy but exhausted. Children get bored, it just happens, and no matter how you prepare, you never know how they'll handle a trip.

The real tip is don't beat yourself up or worry about the people around you, just focus on yourselves and try to enjoy it without letting the stress take over. They are people you will never see again and it'll be over before you know it.

Taking the #BepanthenProtects Challenge

As a parent, from the moment your little one is born, you want to do everything you can to make them happy. Whether it be ensuring they are fed before they start to cry with hunger, or that they get that cuddle before they need to ask for it, it's always been an aim of mine to ensure I try to cover my children's needs before it turns into full melt down mode!

This aim of course, means I've always got to keep their bottoms in check, and ensure I do what I can to prevent nappy rash and irritated skin before it can appear and bother them. For a long while, we actually used cloth nappies with Archer (we managed 7 months before the laundry became too much!) and as they aren't as absorbent, making him more prone to irritation, I actually started using Bepanthen nappy ointment before being asked to take part in this challenge and was thrilled to be able to tell you all about it.

The important thing to remember with Bepanthen is that it not intended for treating or preventing or curing nappy rash, but using it regularly and making it a part of your normal routine when changing a nappy can help to protect your babies skin when the rashes do threaten. A baby's skin is 40% thinner than an adults, which means it's far easier for them to get irritated.

I can't count how many times teething or new foods have given my little ones the type of filled nappy that could cause a rash... but keeping on top of it with cream before it hits really does help keep their skin protected. Apply a thin layer after changing them and letting their bottom dry, and their skin will be protected with a breathable layer that stops irritation from rubbing and moisture.

Bepanthen is kind to skin, and gentle, something I'm sure you will agree is very important when finding a product for your little one:

- No Fragrances
- No colours
- No Preservatives
- No Parabens
- No Antiseptics

There's even a handy travel sized bottle, perfect for throwing in a changing bag. It's definitely something I would recommend.

This post is an entry for the #BepanthenProtects challenge, sponsored by Bepanthen. Learn more about how to protect baby’s sensitive skin on

Monday 4 March 2019

Mothers Day Gifts: Statement Made Jewellery [Giveaway]

Whether you're a mother hoping for something special this Mothers day, or looking for something to purchase for your own, or even a partner looking to get something from the children, it's safe to say it's a battleground.

From teddies, to mugs, flowers, photo frames... the market is inundated with possibility and it's often hard to find a gift that will really surprise and thrill a mum.

I've always been a huge lover of giving and receiving gifts with meaning. A personal gift, something that you know will really make someones day- it's all worth it to see the recipients face when they open it.

That's why I was so excited to be given the chance to work alongside Statement Made Jewellery this Mothers day. Their company stands for exactly what I do- creating something personal that reflects the wearer and everything they are, combining memories with self expression and using this combination to produce beautiful jewellery which makes the perfect gift.

Anyone who knows me, knows I love taking a leap, and making decisions without hesitation and seeing where life takes me.  I don't know which path I'm going to take next, it's a wonderful feeling wondering where I am going and where I'll be in a few years from now. If you had seen my face when I opened this gift from them... a beautiful necklace engraved with a compass pendant- it suited me perfectly.

They have a wonderful range especially for mothers day- if you want to take a look at the site and find the perfect gift, you can do here.

Giveaway: Win a stunning personalised 3D Rose Necklace

I'm offering all my readers the chance to win a stunning gold 3D Rose necklace, with their initial included to really keep it personal. All entrants must be 18 years or over and UK residents. Please enter using the widget below. The winner will be contacted by email after being randomly selected and will have 48 hours to respond- failure to do so will lead to drawing of a new winner.

Win a stunning gold personalised 3D Rose Necklace

I was kindly gifted a necklace in exchange for my honest thoughts, all words and opinions are my own. This post contains affiliate links.
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