25 June 2018

Our favourite summer essentials

As summer has arrived in the UK and following our recently holiday abroad I wanted to share some of my favourite summer essentials with you. When the sun shines we spend more time than ever outside and adventuring and these are a few of the things that I've come across which i know we'll use all summer long:

Solar Buddies

Solar buddies are absolutely fantastic for suncream on the go

You know every now and then when you come across something genius that you wish you had invented? Well this is one of those things...  Solar Buddies are absolutely fantastic and make applying suncream out and about really easy and simple without having to take an entire bottle of suncream with you. 

Solar Buddies are so easy to apply and use

The have been so handy for putting in the girls school bags for when they need to top up their cream on sunny days. The clever design makes it really easy to apply the cream, mess and fuss free. They were brilliant on holiday in the girls kids club bags and I now carry one in my handbag when we are out and about on days out for those times when the sun makes an unexpected appearance. They are also great on the beach for applying suncream without sandy hands. 

All you have to do is unscrew the yellow handle (which screws tightly enough not to leak or for little hands to un do) fill it with your preferred suncream and then pop off the blue lid and the roller ball dispenses the suncream while the foam pad rubs in in and helps distribute the cream across your skin. The girls love applying their suncream with supervision from us to make sure they don't miss a bit meaning it's become a much easier task, particularly when we're trying to leave the house in the mornings!

Anorak Pink Wave Towels

Anorak pink wave bath / beach towels

I adore these gorgeously fluffy dusky pink wave towels from Anorak. In the summer the girls practically turn into mermaids and spend as much time as possible in their paddling pool or running through sprinklers. These are perfect for snuggling up and drying off in whether you pop them in your beach bag, take them swimming, or all year round in your bathroom after bath time. 

Anorak pink wave towels are perfect for bath time

The bath towel size is perfect for the girls and I've claimed the bath sheet! They are double sided which I think is lovely and 100% cotton. I love the stylish simplicity of Anorak's designs, they work so well in both modern and classic homes and are such high quality. 

Jo Jo Swimsuits 

We love our Jo Jo Maman Bebe spotty swimming costumes

Talking of my little mermaids all that time in the water calls for swimwear that will last the summer. I think these little costumes from Jo Jo Maman Bebe are totally adorable. The navy polka dot is really classic and I love the frill detailing and little bow. The straps are elasticated making them easy to put on and take off. 

Jo Jo Maman Bebe Swimming Costume

They are just perfect for fun days by the pool or on the beach.  Jo Jo have a great range of swimwear and accessories for girls and boys from 0 -6 from full sun suits to towelling cover ups  and swimsuits with integrated nappies. We also have three of their pretty floral sunhats which the girls even wore in the pool on holiday. Jo Jo Maman Bebe items are one of the few brands that I have been able to hand down to all three girls which is testimony to the quality of their products i think. I'm really sad that this is Ellie's last year in Jo Jo things.

Diono Traverse Super Compact Stroller 

The Diono Traverse pushchair is great for travelling with

This pushchair was so handy on our recent holiday. It's so lightweight, easy to put up and collapse and small enough to go in most overhead cabins. If you're looking for a travel pushchair then I'd really recommend this one. You can read our full review HERE.

Alphabet Bags Totes 

I love this sunshine appreciation society tote bag from alphabet bags, we are definitely members of that club

Whether you're heading off to the beach, the park, the local water gardens or just out for the day in the summer I really like to have a big tote bag to throw everything in to take with us. I think these tote bags from Alphabet Bags are great, they are really spacious and take up next to no room when empty. I had to get the Sunshine Appreciation Society tote as we are definitely members of that club! They have lots of other designs and even mini ones too for children which are really cute. 

I hope you like our summer picks and wish you long, hazy summer days filled with plenty of adventures!

Me x

* We were kindly gifted the items in this post, or received a discount on our purchase. 
They are all things we genuinely love and recommend. 
All thoughts and opinions are my own.*

14 June 2018

On our travels with the Diono Traverze

We were recently sent the Diono Traverze stroller to road test. It is a fabulously lightweight, super-compact pushchair which we've found brilliant for short trips and travelling with. We have owned quite a few pushchairs over our six years of parenting but have never come across one which collapses as small, is as easy to put up and down, or as light at the Diono Traverse.

Diono Traverze folded - it's so compact
The Diono Traverse has such a small footprint when folded

Lottie is two and a half and although she walks now a lot of the time there are still times that her little legs get tired and she wants to hop in the pushchair. There are other times when it's just quicker and easier to pop her in the pushchair when we go to the shopping centre or into town and most recently Heathrow Terminal 5 where it is very busy! 

Lottie in her Diono Traverze pushchair at our shopping centre
Perfect for a quick whizz around the shops

We took it with us on holiday to Sardinia earlier this month and it was brilliant in the airport. We were able to take it right to the gate with us and it's small enough when collapsed to go on board in most overhead cabins. It comes with a handy case which you simply zip up over it to keep it clean and protected. It even has a telescopic handle to pull it along with just like a suitcase. We had lots of comments in the airport about how fab it was. 

The Diono Traverze is perfect for travelling with and is airport friendly
Ready for an adventure at Heathrow airport

The Diono Traverze folds down to the size of a small suitcase
Ready to check in! The telescopic handle and cover are great features

Lottie napped in the afternoon in the pushchair most days whilst we were away. She was having far too much fun to want to go back to the room for a nap but was quite happy to sit in her pushchair and have a walk around the resort before quietly drifting off. It has a reasonably large sun canopy meaning she was well shaded from the sun while she slept and I sat next to her and read my book. 

The Diono Traverse reclines flat and has a great sun canopy
Holidays are so tiring! Nap time on the go.

The canopy has a viewing window in and there is a breathable mesh section to allow for airflow as well as a zip compartment. Ingeniously it has a 'flip flop friendly' break which is so easy to put on and release, I even did it comfortably bare foot. For such a compact pushchair there is a good amount of space underneath to store things. The handle bar is fixed in place but is foam covered and it feels nice to push.

The Diono Traverse folded

The seat fully reclines but does not sit completely upright, although Lottie was comfortable in it. When fully reclined for naps Lottie's Legs hang down onto the footrest but this would not be a problem for younger babies and it didn't seem to bother her.  The shoulder padding and buckle padding do slip around a bit but on the other hand are easy to take off and clean. We put them in the zip section of the canopy, or fastened the buckle when folded up so they don't get lost.

The Diono Traverse folded up and in it's case
The case is perfect for protecting the pushchair while travelling and storing

The wheels are small making it a smooth ride in airports, shopping centres and pavements but it's not suitable for cobbles and off road. It is a great city pushchair, hopping on and off public transport with it is no problem as it has such a small footprint even when up or can be folded up super quickly. It would be a great spare to keep at the grandparents when you're not using it to travel with as it folds up so neatly it could be kept under the stairs or in a cupboard. We've all had pushchairs that take up the whole hallway or that are difficult to get in doorways but this certainly isn't a problem with this pushchair.

Lottie in her Diono Traverze
Lottie loves her 'little yellow pushchair' 

Things we love about the Diono Traverze

  • It can be used from birth to 15kg
  • The design -  it looks great and is super stylish as well as being very well made. We have it in yellow but it also comes in several other colourways.
  • Its so light - just 5.6 kg (12.3lbs)
  • It's really easy to put up and down
  • It transforms into luggage making it a fantastic travel pushchair
  • Flip flop friendly break 
  • 5 point harness which is easy for parents to release
  • Lottie calls it her 'little yellow pushchair'!

All in all we think this is a fantastic pushchair to travel with and it definitely made holidaying with a toddler easier. 

Me x

*We were kindly sent the Diono Traverze in exchange for an honest review. 
All thoughts and opinions are my own.*