Fota Wildlife Park Cork – family pass and VIP family experience review

fota wildlife park cork review vip family pass fota wildlife park family pass

Last year one of the first big purchases I made with money I earned myself was the yearly pass for Fota Wildlife Park here in Cork. So many of my friends have it and even though its about a half hour drive from the house I just knew it was something we would get a huge amount of use out of. And I was so right, I would estimate we have been about 20 times in the past year and honestly there has never been a time where I have suggested going to Fota and the girls have been anything less than ecstatic. And it’s been a joy to watch Lucy change over the last year going from a ‘baby’ that stayed in the buggy the vast majority of the way round to a little lady that literally walks or runs the whole route now and grows more and more fascinated by the animals every time we visit. And the park has changed loads since we started going, there have been new animals introduced and new babies born so it really is a new experience every time we go. Continue reading

3 effective ways to deal with and treat nappy rash

There are, in parenting, a few things that are rarely avoided, like sleepless nights and sore bums. Nappy rash is one of those things that just occurs, there is usually no avoiding it that’s why the title of this blog post isn’t ‘3 ways to avoid nappy rash’ because it’s not like you can stop their teeth coming down ha!! At the moment little Miss Alice is suffering, I have no idea why, she’s not really teething so I figure it’s just one of those things that happens especially once they start on their weaning journey. And nappy rash can really hurt babies, it’s an awful thing to see any small baby suffer so I’ve put together this post which covers the three ways I deal with nappy rash to firstly make it as comfortable as possible for the baby while they’re suffering and secondly how to get rid of it as quickly as possible. I usually find I can get it to clear up within about 24 hours using these tried and tested (on four kids now!!) methods. Continue reading

8 ways to be more sustainable around the house

Back in the day when I used to work the area I became involved in was centred around sustainability – mainly in the area of water, wastewater and the reuse of dairy wastes. Sounds glamorous eh! But it was really interesting and I loved it and when I became a stay at home mother it was something that I became more and more conscious of especially as the girls got bigger and we had more. I started to question the world we were going to be leaving behind for them and, more importantly, the problems their generation and others will face.  Continue reading

Our sleep journey with the help of Lucy Wolfe

Ah sleep, it’s one of those topics that I think most parents could talk at length about. We’ve had a checkered history with sleep – the first two ladies were, in general, pretty good. Then our third lady came along and I’m pleased to say that she has slept through the night consistently now for the last week so yay…she’s two and a half!! Disaster but it’s not her I’m here to talk about, it’s the smallest lady! Last night she slept through the night for the first time and she’s 7.5 months so I am thrilled. Sure look she may not sleep through again for another month, at this age between teething and leaps and milestones it’s important we, as parents, manage our sleep expectations, sure some babies sleep all night from the start etc but lots of babies go through phases where they’ll sleep really well and then they get sick or get teeth and sleep is broken for a while. Anyway, this is a long post so I’ll get straight into it!   Continue reading

Holidays in England – tips on travel and where to stay in the South West

We have been holidaying in England for years now mainly because that is where my inlaws live so it makes sense we visit there so the girls will get time with that side of the family. All that aside however it is a wonderful place to visit – you might think sure how is it any different to Ireland it’s so close but yes it is, the picturesque old villages, the beautiful coastal paths and the traditional pub lunch are among some of the differences I love. Last time we holidayed in Cornwall I got SO many questions about getting there, it is a bit of a trek but obviously far easier to get to than say France for a camping holiday (where we have been once with the girls and I wrote about it here and will again but not at the moment when the smallest lady is just so small, renting a house in the south of England is far more appealing than a mobile home at the moment). 

The advice here on travel would apply to any trip to England if you are travelling by boat then then by road! 
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Investing in the classics with Marks and Spencer

Lately I am loath to admit that though I harbour dreams of looking as effortlessly stylish as some of the ladies I follow on Instagram, for me this just isn’t a reality right now. My days (and nights!) are busy and I would love to have the time and energy to spend my mornings browsing through my closet pulling together outfits, but the truth is that the same jumpers and jeans are on rotation for many’s  a day. And that’s ok because I need to be warm (for walking to school) and I need to be comfortable around the girls. Continue reading

Pregnancy after miscarriage – 5 tips on how to worry less and enjoy it more

This is one of those posts I’ve had in the back of my mind for, quite literally, years now but October is National Pregnancy & Infant Loss Awareness Month so it feels right to publish this now. I haven’t really spoken much about what we went through because I’m not a total oversharer despite having a blog! That said, if you know me personally I am more than open about it. Miscarriage is a strange one, it happens for most very early on, before the 12 weeks when you’ve had a chance to tell anyone about it. And then if it happens it is so utterly shocking. I couldn’t even say the actual word, miscarriage, until long after Lucy was born. So it’s hard to just bring it up, hard to talk about it with friends when you need to. I think sometimes people feel then that it’s a taboo subject, like it shouldn’t be talked about but for me personally it wasn’t that I didn’t want to talk about it, I just couldn’t.  Continue reading

My Autumn wardrobe staples for busy Mums from M&S

Ah Autumn is finally upon us, I absolutely love the Autumn and the Spring, I love the transition between the two more slightly extreme seasons. I adore the frosty cold mornings that Autumn brings and the cosy nights in in front of the fire. I’ve come to realise I tend to rely on similar versions of the same outfit for Autumn and Winter – skinny jeans or jeggings and cosy jumpers. I’d like to think I will wear dresses and skirts 

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What to expect before, during and after an elective c-section in Ireland

elective c section ireland cork

This is a post I feel I had better write before all the info is gone from my head, lost in the blur or sleepless nights and school runs and preparing food! I have had four sections now, one emergency and the subsequent three were elective, all in Cork University Maternity Hospital so obviously the info I give here may differ from hospital to hospital. The second which is the pivotal one really, once you have two sections for the most part you have set your future birthing options in stone you can’t go vaginal after that (in the vast majority of cases). The main reason I had an elective section second time round was based on the consultants opinion. At 36 weeks the baby was measuring around 8lbs (in fact she was closer to 9lbs at that stage!) and given the previous history of my first birthing experience it was decided to go for an elective section at 39 weeks (standard elective sections are always done one week before due date). 

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The art of transitional dressing, pre- to postpartum, with Marks and Spencers

Ah maternity clothes…I have found over my four pregnancies that dressing an ever changing body is a real challenge. And maternity clothes are, bizarrely, becoming increasingly more difficult to find in the high street stores with most maternity ranges banished to the web. I always find it baffling really because of all the times in your life you need to try on clothes it’s when you are pregnant! Over the course of my pregnancies I’ve tried to mix it up in terms of what I wear from ‘maternity ranges’ and shopping around to find clothes that fit during and after pregnancy. This is the real dream, something that is flattering in both phases of existence, and while it can be tricky it is not impossible. Continue reading