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ukshoe_gal

ukshoe_gal
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Member since: 16.06.2011

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      01.05.2012 12:13
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      Great fun yet educational toy that will last for ages

      My son received the Vtech Sort and Soar Rocket for Christmas from his Uncle after receiving a brief from myself instructing him to buy something educational with lights and sounds, as, at the time my son was only 10 months old and would only give toys the time of day if they took at least 2 batteries. Typical!!! Anyway, the Vtech Sort and Soar Rocket coldn't have answered the brief any better.

      The rocket is plastic with 5 slots and corresponding coloured shapes to fi through. The surround of each slot is coloured to match the colour of each shape, e.g the orange triangle fits through an orange triangle shaped slot. Once all 5 shapes have been placed through the appropriate slots, the rocket will "blast off" which involves the rocket shaking from side to side and then launching upwards, releasing the shapes from the bottom in order to start again. This is accompanied by lashing lights and rocket sound effects. You are able to choose from 6 learning themes by using a slider at the bottom of the rocket. Each theme determines what the roctet will say as the shape is placed through the slot. So, for colours, the rocket will tell baby the colour of each shape. For shapes, it will tell baby the shape and so on.

      Vtech recommend that this toy is suitable for babies aged 9 months upwards. My son at 10 months enjoyed carrying the shapes all over the house with him but showed little interest in the rocket itself. I have continued to get it out every couple of weeks to gauge his interest in it and now, at 14 months old, he loves it! He has learnt to put the shapes through the correct slots and to press the big red button on the top of the rocket which will allow it to blast off if all the shapes have not been inserted. He loves the flashing lights and sound effects and it is lovely to see him concentrating as he tries to put the shapes in. It does take batteries, however, I have never had to change them and he has played with it regularly since December. It does make noises, however, I do not find them irritating like some others.

      I love that this toy is both educational and fun for my little one. He plays with it regularly and I am able to see him developing each time he does. Definitely one of our favourites!

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        19.04.2012 12:41
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        I am in love with this product!

        A girl spends her entire life being continually dissappointed by the false promises of hair shampoo advertisements. After watching the beautiful girl on the advert swish her long, straight, shiny hair around the screen for 30 seconds, we are convinced this is going to be the one for us. The one that will finally tame our mane of frizzy, dull, boring looking hair. The next visit to the supermarket can't come quickly enough so that we can purchase the shampoo tht is finally going to change our lives forever!!! And then... It doesn't. Yes our hair is clean. But that is where the promises end. Our hair still isn't as swishy and shiny as the babe on the TV. Every hair wash is followed by disappointment that we have to wait until the bottle is empty until we can try a different miracle product.

        That was until.... I discovered Pantene's straight and sleek shampoo. My hair now looks like it does on the advert (well almost). It is clean, it is shiny, it is straighter and it smells lovely. My husband has even complimented me on how nice my hair is looking (so it must be good for him to have noticed!). The effects are also long lasting. With some shampoos, the first few times you use it you are impressed but as your hair gets used to the product, the effects wear off. This is not the case with Pantene. I have been using it for around a month now and I am still in love with it. I think for the first time ever, I will be repeat buying a shampoo, rather than buying what is on offer or what I am lured into buying from TV adverts. It is also good value for money. It isn't one of the most expensive shampoos on the market, however, it must surely be one of the best!

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        19.04.2012 12:16
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        An absolute favourite in our house!

        This is my son's absolute favourite toy! He got it for Christmas at which point he was 10 months old. His Dad assembled it which was really simple, and inserted the 4 size C batteries. It whirred into life and my little boy started to cry. He spent all of Christmas day being petrified of it as it is very noisy, however, by boxing day, he had got used to it and played with it for ages. As babies tend to do, he didn't play with it as intended at first and couldn't grasp the concept of rolling the two cars that are included down the ramp where they are spun around in a motorised basin before being spat out down another ramp and under the finish line. Instead, he enjoyed carrying the cars around the house with him and hiding them. He also learnt to set the motor going by pulling on the lever at the front of the speedway, he would then simply press down on the basin to stop it fom spinning. He got hours of entertainment from this. As he has got older, he has learnt to play with the speedway properly and sends the cars down the ramp with no problems. It is proving to be very educational for him as well as he has started experimenting with putting other toys such as megabloks in the basin to see what happens. This toy gets played with every single day and is definitely his favourite. If I don't get it out r him, he goes and try's to pull it down from on top of his toy box!

        The speedway also has spinners and things to turn on the front and lights up and plays car revving sounds when in use. It is rather large when assembled and an awkward toy to find a home for when tidying up. It uses the batteries quite quickly as the motor uses a lot of power. As it is made by Fisher Price, I have found it to be of excellent quality and I can see this being a firm favourite for a long time to come. It is aimed at 6 months and upwards and although a baby of this age may not get the full benefits of this toy, they will find fun in it in someway and will grow into its full features. In my opinion, a must have!

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      • Ikea Antilop High Chair / Highchair / 25 Readings / 25 Ratings
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        16.01.2012 15:20
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        The best £15 you will ever spend!

        We were given the Ikea Antilop highchair for our son when I began weaning him at around 5 months. I gratefully accepted it, however, I fully intended to replace it with a more expensive chair from Mamas & Papas as after seeing the Antilop in Ikea I knew that it only cost around £15 and didn't hold out much hope for it.

        The chair is very solid in construction and the chair itself is made from blown plastic. Ours is White but I believe you can also get the chair in blue and red. It then has four metal legs that are attached to the bottom of the seat via clips, allowing you to easily remove the legs for storage. Our chair has a detachable tray that simply clips on and off. The seat also has a lap strap to restrain the child, which has recently been replaced by Ikea due to a recall. I have used the highchair in many homes and have found it to fit nicely up to all tables allowing my son to join in the social aspect of mealtimes.

        I have now been using the chair for almost six months and am yet to replace it. In fact, I have fallen in love with it! It is the best highchair out there as far as I can see. As it is a solid seat rather than a folding chair, there are no nooks and crannies for crumbs to get stuck in. It is so easy to clean which is a really important feature for a highchair in my opinion. I simply wipe the chair down with an antibacterial wipe after each meal and that is enough to keep it in tip-top, hygienic condition. Every now and then I will also put the tray through the dishwasher if it is particularly stained and it comes out as good as new. This chair will last forever I am sure and would see you through your whole family if you had more than one child. It is easy to see why so man restaurants use these chairs, easy to clean, robust and long-lasting.

        I feel that my son is very safe in this chair as it is very sturdy (doesn't rock around) and I don't think he would be able to climb out of it. It has rubber feet so if it is used on a hard floor, it will not slip about. The strap is fully adjustable so will grow with my son and it prevents him from being able to lift his legs up out of the chair.

        He seems comfortable in the chair and never complains about going in it at meal times. He even likes to sit and play in it at times. Although it doesn't fold away, it doesn't take up too much space and sits in a corner in my dining room. It isn't offensive to look at, just plain and simple so will fit into any home's decor. It is very light so is easy to transport around the home.

        I think this is the best highchair around and at £15 is an absolute bargain. It does exactly what is required of it, nothing more and nothing less. It will outlive my son's need for it and I am sure I will be able to pass it on to fulfil it's purpose for someone else. Can't recommend it enough!

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          04.01.2012 19:27
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          Fun toy that requires a lot of room

          In October I began to plan my son's first Christmas. I was so excited and began hunting online for possible presents for him. A few months previously I had seen the spinning zebra in the ELC and loved it. It was bright, colourful and most importantly had lights and sounds (a must for our little boy!), however, I was dismayed to see that the toy was aimed at babies aged 12months and upwards. At this point my son was only around 6 months old so I put it to the back of my mind. Whilst looking online for possible Christmas present ideas, I found Babies R Us to have a 3 for 2 offer on Fisher Price toys. As my son would be 10 months old at Christmas, I decided to go for it and get the Zebra! Even if it were unsuitable at first, I knew that he would grow into it.

          Once the paper had been torn off on Christmas morning (with a bit of help from daddy), we took it out of the large box. We were confronted with a moulded plastic zebra (complete with red trainers!), a yellow handle that had to be screwed into place, and a green base that had to be assembled into a hexagon using a combination of steel bars for strength and plastic covers. It took less than 10 minutes to assemble and the instructions were not required.

          Once assembled, we placed our son on it to find that his toes almost touched the ground (he is quite tall for his age) however, he required us to hold him in place and bounce him up and down. We were met with giggles of delight as the zebra bounced and span around to the sound of hooves galloping and the light in the handle flashing in time to the music. It was an instant hit! He has played with it every day since Christmas an is yet to tire of it. Obviously he will gain more from it once he is able to sit on it unaided. He also enjoys practicing his standing by holding onto the handle at the front of the zebra and spinning the beads contained within.

          The toy is quite bulky and takes up quite a lot of space in our living room. It cannot be folded or dismantled in any way which is probably the only downside to the toy. It is very sturdy and seems quite well built. If the saddle were to be made of a non slip material, the younger child may find it easier to stay on because as it is made of shiny plastic, my son's bottom slides off the seat.

          This is a fun toy, but as it usually retails at around £45, it is quite expensive. It is brightly coloured and encourages movement aswell as stimulating the senses with light and sound. I hope this will become a favourite in our house that will be used for years to come!

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          03.01.2012 18:35
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          Great for occasional use but no workhorse

          I recently bought the Quinny Zapp in rebel red. My baby had turned 9 months and although feeling that a fullsize pushchair was still necessary for heavy duty work such as walking the dog, I thought he may be ready for a lighter weight buggy for taking in the car, popping to the shops etc.

          The 3 in 1 pushchair that we purchased when our son was born is large and cumbersome and doesn't fold (only the chassis folds and the seat unit remains in one piece) therefore proving to be a bit of a pain to fit in the car when going anywhere with luggage or the dog (or both!)

          Therefore, I decided to do some research online about buggies and found the Quinny Zapp to receive excellent reviews and to be the most compact and lightest buggy on the market. My friend had the Quinny Buzz and seemed happy with the brand and once I found the Zapp was on offer for £120 on Amazon, I bit the bullet and ordered one.

          It arrived a few days later and I was pleased to see it was in quite a small package indicating that it did indeed fold away quite compactly. After unpacking, I managed to erect the pushchair really easily, without having to refer to the instructions. It looked good in it's vivid red colour and the 5 point harness looked substantial. The pushchair felt of good quality and was very stylish. I couldn't wait to try it out!

          It's first outing was shopping in Glasgow where I managed to get it on and off the train with no problems without even having to fold it up. I was slightly concerned as many people had said the the version of the Zapp without the reclining seat made it difficult for the child to sleep. However, my baby rarely sleeps whilst out so didn't think this would be too much of a problem. Just to be awkward though, on this particular trip, it became apparent that he was extremely tired and grumpy. After a while he did manage to drop off and slept quite happily in the pushchair for over an hour.

          The pushchair does fold away very compactly and I have since purchased the carry bag that allows the buggy to be packed away neatly and stored in the car.

          The downsides that I have found with the pushchair are that the hood is very flimsy and doesn't seem to fit at the sides properly. The raincover that is provided is USELESS! It attaches at the top and bottom with velcro but as you fix it at the top it comes undone at the bottom and vice versa. So annoying!!! Also, my little one has a habit of pushing his feet out while you are trying to attach meaning it won't even reach to be able to fasten in place. There is no basket included to put shopping in/store raincover etc. and to buy one is rather expensive. It is almost a necessity aswell because you are unable to put bags over the handles without the buggy tipping backwards!

          This buggy is perfect for shopping trips and travellling as it is so compact and easy to manouvre, however, it would be very impractical for off-roading as it has very small, hard plastic wheels. I imagine this will be great to take on holiday though as it is light and compact to take on the plane.

          All in all, I am happy with this buggy and the price I paid for it. It serves it's purpose as an occasional use pushchair well and the quality of the product means that I am sure we will be using it for a long while to come.

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            03.01.2012 18:08
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            A modern classic to be enjoyed by all babies

            The Fisher Price Chatterphone is a modern classic. I had one when I was a child as did my husband and they were certainly favourites of ours. I was therefore really pleased when my mum bought one for my 10 month old son for Christmas. She had seen them on offer in one of the supermarkets before Christmas and couldn't resist the chance to get him something that brought back so many happy memories of mine and my brothers childhood.

            The Chatterphone's popularity has recently soared thanks to it's appearance in the Toy Story 3 film which has given it a new lease of life. The toy itself is very simple. It comprises a moulded plastic body with a dial that rings when spun around, and a receiver attached by a piece of elastic. The phone can be pulled along by a string at the front which makes the eyes of the phone go up and down.

            It is aimed at babies over 12 months, however, my 10 month old loves it and although he is probably not yet benefitting from all of its features at the moment, he enjoys sucking the receiver!

            It seems strange that the phone remains so popular despite the fact that it bears no resemblance to the modern telephone, however, I am sure that in the future my baby will enjoy pretending to phone his friends on it just as much as I, and thousands of children before him, have done!

            At such a low price, you can't go wrong. Babies will have enjoyment from this toy for a long time.

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              16.10.2011 19:51
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              One of my son's favourites

              I was given this by my cousin who had finished with it for her sons. It looked great fun, but as my son was only 6 weeks old at the time, it has sat in a corner for quite a while. I had forgotten all about it until about a month ago when my son (now 7 months) was having a particularly grumpy day (you know the sort I mean!!). When none of his other toys seemed to be doing the trick, I had a sudden flash of inspiration about this activity centre. I got it out, took off the legs, and placed it in front of him on his bedroom floor. He was instantly transfixed. He loved the flashing lights and sounds and you could practically see the cogs whirring as he tried to work out what all the different buttons and knobs did.

              At this stage, he was unable to sit up unaided. However, on the third day of him playing with it, he seemed to be leaning forward over the toy and playing with it seemed to be balancing him. I tentatively took my support hand from his back and to my amazement he was able to sit on his own!!! I waited for him to topple, but he didn't. By resting on the activity centre he was able to balance himself and sit unsupported for ages. For this reason alone, in my eyes this toy is a winner!!

              The activity station has many things for the baby to do from pushing buttons to pulling levers and spinning rattles. Each action is rewarded with a sound and flashing lights. The toy has 2 modes; music or learning (numbers, alphabet, colours etc.) and can be played with either in French or English. The legs on the toy are removable which means that whilst the baby is unable to stand the toy can be played with on the floor and the legs put back on when the child is bigger. This gives longevity to the toy.

              As I was given this toy, I am unsure how much it costs, but even if I had to pay for it, I think I would have still got one. This toy is amazing and is loved by my baby. It is played with every day and he is still learning different aspects of the toy. This will be a favourite in our house for a long time to come!!!

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                16.10.2011 16:36
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                Best for crawlers

                My 7 month old son was showing signs of wanting to crawl. He had all the moves but just not the co-ordination to actually move. We bought him this toy whilst out one day from the ELC as they were having a 20% off day. It looked fun and said that it encouraged crawling. We have also had other toys from Vtech that have been good quality and that my son has enjoyed playing with so we thought we would give it a go.

                When we got home, we put our son on the floor and switched the ball on, placing it in front of him. He immediately began to bat it about and it sang to him as it rolled out of reach. He found this incredibly frustrating as he was unable to get it back. I therefore had to nudge it back within his reach. Cue us doing this several times before he got fed up and began sucking the table leg instead!

                We have had several attempts with this toy with the same outcome each time, he will play with it for a short while before getting fed up and frustrated. He much prefers sitting up with it between his legs and pressing the buttons. However, his favourite thing about this toy is the brightly coloured ribbons attatched to the top that he likes to suck to death!!

                The toy plays several pleasant tunes and sound effects when the various coloured light up buttons are pressed, this means that babies are able to play with and enjoy this toy even if they are unable to crawl. However, I would say that rather than using to encourage crawling, it would be of more use to a child that can already crawl as they will be able to follow the ball rather than get frustrated by it moving away.

                This toy is educational, teaching numbers, animals and motor skills, however, it is certainly not one of our favourites. Maybe in time, we can grow to love it.

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                  16.10.2011 12:20
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                  No gimmicks, just clean and health teeth!!!

                  I recently made a long-awaited trip to the dentist. Having moved around a lot over the last few years due to my husband's job in the Navy, this was the first time I have managed to get registered!! I knew that on my first trip I was going to be in for a bit of a telling off for not going more regularly.... but I wasn't prepared to be told I had the beginnings of gum disease. I was horrified! Losing my teeth has always been my biggest fear and have always looked after them so well, I havn't got a single filling! The dentist made me two appointments with the hygienist as he said that it would require both sessions to get my teeth back up to scratch!

                  Whilst at my first appointment with the hygienist, I was informed I had been brushing wrong. I didn't realise you could brush wrong (you just put it in an scrub right?) but apparently you can. I asked what she recommended, manual or electric? (I have always been a manual kind'a girl!) Without hesitation she replied "electric!!". But which one??? She agreed that it is a minefield out there with prices ranging from £15 to £200. She said that you don't need an all singing all dancing brush, just one that will do the job well. Therefore, she said the best was the Oral-B Professional Care 1000. No gimmicks, just clean teeth. She explained that it's RRP was £59.99 but that many places usually have them on offer for half price.

                  As soon as I got home, I went on the Internet and sure enough found it for sale from Amazon for £28.99. It arrived 3 days later and I excitedly unpacked it. I took it upstairs to the bathroom and plugged the charging unit into the shaver socket (that is the sort of plug it has, however, you can buy an adaptor for about 50p). You then simply plop the toothbrush onto the base unit and a flashing green light lets you know that it is charging. A full charge takes around 17 hours which is supposed to last a week, however, I simply charge mine for a few hours every couple of days.

                  When it came to use the brush for the first time, I was slightly nervous. It looked a bit scary and I didn't like the thought of the brush vibrating in my mouth. The brush is surprisingly light and only requires a small blob of any toothpaste. I put it into my mouth and it felt really strange vibrating and spinning around.

                  The brush has a very useful timer function where it buzzes every 30seconds to let you know to move on to the next quadrant of your mouth. It also has a red light that flashes if you press on too hard. And basically that's it! The brush does all the work for you! It advises in the leaflet that comes with it that for the first few uses you may experience some bleeding as your mouth adjusts to the new brush, but I didn't have any problems at all. Once finished brushing, simply run the brush under the cold tap to rinse it as you would with any other toothbrush.

                  After a few gos, the vibrating didn't bother me anymore as you get used to it and my teeth definately felt cleaner and my mouth felt fresher.

                  On my next visit to the hygienist, she couldn't believe the difference! 100% improvement!!!

                  I love my new toothbrush and would recommend that all those still sitting on the fence take the plunge and buy an electric toothbrush. You won't regret it!!!

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                  16.10.2011 11:44
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                  My favourite plug-in air freshener

                  I purchased this plug-in air freshener as it was on offer from one of the supermarkets and I needed something to mask the doggy smell that my labrador seems to emit!! It promised to last up to 90 days (something that I took with a pinch of salt as they all tend to say that and last a couple of weeks) and would alternate between two scents to ensure you continue to notice it. With Febreze products, they also promise to eliminate smells rather than simply mask them, leaving behind a sweet smelling fragrance.

                  Before plugging in, I read the instructions carefully to ensure I could prolong the life of it for as long as possible. It advised having it set to low for no more than 12 hours a day to make sure it would last for the 90 days. Therefore, I always make sure I switch the unit off before I go to bed (this reduces the chance of the unit overheating and causing a fire also).

                  The unit is fairly unobtrusive with a cream plastic plu-in unit and glass refills. The unit has a little green light that comes on when switched on to show which fragrance is currently being circulated.

                  I have had the unit for about 3 weeks now and the liquid within the refills has hardly gone down. It has done it's job of eliminating my dog's odour and is still noticable due to the changing of fragrances. The fragrance isn't too overpowering as some air fresheners are and there are many variations available so you can try new fragrances when your current one runs out. The units and refills are quite expensive, however, as it appears to be living up to it's long lasting promise, I think this unit provides good value for money. I think this will be my plug-in of choice from now on!

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                • Maxi Cosi Cabriofix / Child Car Seat / 18 Readings / 18 Ratings
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                  05.09.2011 23:11
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                  Stylish, versatile car seat that I would choose all over again!

                  My husband ordered this car seat after hours of research on the Internet. He decided that this one sounded the best because of the safety reviews it had received and the fact that it was compatible with an isofix base which he wanted me to have so that I didn't have to faff about with seatbelts and bending in and out of the car.

                  We chose the red and black seat as at the time we ordered it we were unsure what we were having. We also bought the isofix base.

                  When the seat arrived, I excitedly unpacked it and was immediately bamboozled by it. It had so many buttons and levers and I couldn't even figure out how to move the handle. However, after a quick consultation of the instruction booklet, it all became clear. It wasn't complicated at all. Now my only concern was that the seat felt quite heavy, and that was without a baby in it! However, I never looked at any other seats so don't know how it compares weight-wise.

                  The seat looked nice and felt very sturdy and of good quality. The side protection and newborn insert meant that a baby's head would be secure and comfortable. The straps were easy to operate and, although we had the isofix base, strapping it into the car appeared easy enough with the slots for the seatbelt being highlighted in blue.

                  When our son arrived, my husband brought the seat to the hospital to collect myself and the baby. We got him strapped into the seat easily enough, however, after the sleep deprivation of the night before, we had great fun trying to get the seat into the car in the hospital car park!! We must have been trying for 15minutes!!! Turned out we were trying to put it in backwards!!

                  My son is now almost 7 months old and the seat is still doing well. It is used almost every day, and with our family living 6 hours away, he has spent quite a lot of time in it and he seems comfortable and happy. It is quite heavy with the baby in it, but you do just get used to it. Can't wait for him to be able to walk though!!

                  We also chose to buy the Mothercare My3 pushchair as it was compatible with the maxicosi cabriofix. This has been really useful and has allowed us to at times just take the pushchair chassis which has saved alot of space in the boot. I also love the fact that the seat has a built in sun canopy to keep the sun off baby whilst in the car. It also keeps the rain off whilst you carry it from the house to the car. However, it is not thick enough material to keep the rain off for any length of time.

                  All in all a great looking, stylish car seat that is of excellent quality and keeps my baby safe!

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                • Totsbots / Baby Care / 13 Readings / 13 Ratings
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                  09.08.2011 13:23
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                  Great nappies if a little expensive

                  I LOVE these nappies!!!

                  I have been using them since my son was 4 days old and he has just gone into the next size at 5 1/2 months old. I use a combination of the terry towelling ones (fluffles) and the flexitots. When I bought them I intended to use the nappies full time so I bought 24 nappies and 4 waterproof covers. This was sufficient to only need to wash them every other day.

                  The nappies are extremely simple to use. They are the same shape as a disposable nappy and you simply pop in a liner (either disposable or fleece) and put the nappy on your baby fastening with velcro (applix) rather than the sticky tabs that a disposable has. You then put a waterproof cover over the top to stop seepage. The nappies are extremely absorbant, however, my baby was sleeping very well at night and was starting to wet through them. As I didn't want to have to wake him to change his nappy, I decided to put him in disposables at night.

                  Once a nappy has been soiled, simply put it in a nappy bucket with some sanitiser (I use Napisan) and leave to soak until the bucket is full or you need some clean nappies. They do not smell at all if treated in this way. Once ready to wash, I simply put them in the washing machine on a 40oC wash with non-bio detergent and fabric conditioner (I also use Vanish Oxy Action to keep them white). They can then be either line dried or put in the tumble dryer.

                  These nappies are expensive to buy and with the offers that are available on nappies in supermarkets, and taking into account the extra costs involved with all the washing, I am unsure how much cheaper real nappies work out. They also make baby's bottom very large making it sometimes quite difficult to get clothes on as they are obviously designed to be worn over disposables. However, despite this, I much prefer these nappies over disposables. They look much nicer and I am sure they must feel nicer against baby's skin. They don't create much more work than disposables either, with a baby in the house the washer is on constantly anyway so what difference does another couple of loads a week make? My husband can use them easily and when debating whether to buy my son the Size 2 nappies or put him into disposables full time, it was him that championed the Tots Bots.

                  I have not used any other brand of real nappies so am unable to compare Tots Bots to anything else, however, I am very pleased with this brand and that is why I have not felt the need to try any others.

                  So even if you don't feel the need to use real nappies to save the environment, or to save money, consider using real nappies because they are traditional, look much nicer and are probably much more comfortable for your baby.

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                  09.08.2011 12:49
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                  Great toy for a great price

                  I bought this for my 5 1/2 month old son with some money he was given for his christening. I was like a kid in a sweet shop on Amazon as I had previously struggled to find fun toys that were suitable for children under 6months. However, the choice was now unbelievable. I knew that I wanted to get him something educational with lights and sound as these had previously held his interest on other toys. Budget was also an issue, I didn't want to spend more than £15.

                  This Leap Frog Alphabet Zoo Ball was recommended at the bottom of the page, and when I saw it had an average 5* rating in the reviews, I had a look. It sounded like just what I was after and at £14.14 I thought I had found a bargain!

                  When it arrived, I unpacked it excitedly and switched it on. My husband immediately snatched it from me and began to play. "It's not for you" I reminded him as I handed it to our son who was looking up expectantly at his new toy from his Bumbo. I placed it on his play tray, showed him how to spin the wheel, and that was it, he was off!!!

                  He sat for ages spinning the wheel and smiling at the sounds it made.

                  The toy has 2 volume levels and 3 modes.

                  ABC: The ball plays a tune until it stops on a letter, it then tells you what the letter is

                  Animals: The ball plays a tune until it stops on a letter, it then tells you the name of an animal that begins with that letter and the sound it makes

                  Alphabet song: The ball plays the alphabet song until it stops on a letter, it will then play the sound of the animal it lands on.

                  Some of the animals are a bit unusual (N is for Needlefish for example???) however, me and my husband struggled to think of anything better (I had never realised there wasn't a well known animal that began with N. Answers on a postcard please!). The ball speaks with an english accent rather than american as some toys do. This means that the letters are all pronounced correctly, for example Z is zed rather than zee.

                  My son does tend to knock this off his play tray quite easily so might perhaps benefit from having suckers on the bottom???

                  All in all, I love this toy. It keeps my son amused and is being educational at the same time which is a bonus. The songs are a bit annoying and get stuck in your head but it is this repetition that babies love. I think my son will be playing with this for a long time to come.

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                  • Bumbo Baby Seat / Nursing / 13 Readings / 12 Ratings
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                    15.07.2011 20:28
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                    Great item if you have money to spare, however, certainly not an essential buy

                    I myself had never heard of a Bumbo until a friend of ours produced it while we were at their house over christmas, and plonked their then 4 month old daughter into it. It appeared to be nothing more than a blue foam potty without a hole, with two cut outs for the child's legs. "What's that" I enquired naively. "It's a Bumbo" came the response. Obviously! I felt like an inadequate mum to be. How on earth was I going to be able to look after my new baby if I didn't even know what a Bumbo was?

                    She explained that it was a seat for babies designed to strengthen their muscles and aid them in sitting up by themselves. "It's also a great babysitter when you need to get on with housework" she said. Now I was liking the sound of it.

                    With impending motherhood upon me, I quickly forgot about the Bumbo until my son was about 4 months old. He was starting to get frustrated lying around all the time and so the Bumbo came instantly to mind. I did a bit of shopping around online and quickly decided that no, he really didn't need one. £40!!! I couldn't believe it. "How can people be so gullible" I asked my husband, "I'm sure he'll learn to sit up without one!". Our life continued Bumboless for a few weeks, until I was in Mothercare one day and excitedly realised they had a sale on!! (Oh how my life has changed!). There, in pride of place beside the counter was the Bumbo, with £10 off!!! I decided then that perhaps he did need one, and that he would get loads of use from it. And we could always re-sell it when he was finished using it (this was how I was planning on justifying this impulse buy to my husband when I got home!)

                    As soon as we got home, I unpacked our blue Bumbo from its box and put him in. We attached the play-tray that was included and got him a couple of toys. He actually played with them!! For the first time he was able to sit and play with his toys. However, he pretty quickly learnt the old favourite, throw the toy out of reach and mummy will pick it up for me. Oh fun!

                    I now love my Bumbo!! I think I have used it everywhere. He sat in it while I washed the car, while I ironed, while I ate my lunch, while I cleaned the bathroom.... you get the idea. It is really light and therefore portable meaning you really can use it anywhere (as long as it is a flat surface). The tray is a little tricky to attach as you have to kind of lift up the front of the Bumbo while the child is in it to slide the tray underneath. However, this is a minor problem. He is totally safe in it, and no matter how much he struggles to get out by arching his back, the way his legs are clamped mean that he ain't going anywhere.

                    I have also been using the Bumbo for weaning before I move him into his highchair. It keeps him more stable and he is comfortable in it.

                    He still isn't sitting unaided, but it is nice to see him being able to sit up and take more notice of what is going on around him.

                    All in all, I think the bumbo was a good buy, but it is rather expensive for what it is. As my mum said when i told her about the wonders of bumbo, "neither you or your brother had one and you can sit up alright can't you?"

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