Thursday, 20 November 2014

Trendy Tot Thursday 20/11

How on earth is it nearly the end of November already seriously?!?! I have been busy buying Olivia all kinds of new clothes, boots, gloves and tights to keep her warm this winter. This is no easy feat when your child grows constantly, I have 4 bin bags of clothes she has outgrown recently it's ridiculous so I have had to resort to drastic measures we are nearly the same shoe size!!!!!!!!

Anywho it's time to get to my fav outfit recently. As I am struggling to link up every week or even blog at all I will feature the outfit she wore on our recent trip out on the Mersey Ferry.

Olivia wore her Cool Cat leggings and top from Tesco age 9-10 it is getting a bit small for her now but she likes it. She wore it with her bargain £1 boots from Internationale size 4 and her funky new My Little Pony socks again £1 from Primark. Her purple coat was £4.99 from Barnado's a favourite hunting ground of mine and is a Tog24. Her hat/scarf all in one id from Tesco's and from last year which saved me forking out again for one this year especially as it was £10 she is definitely getting her wear out of it!

Trendy Tot Thursday : ClearlyBex

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Would you leave your child home alone?

There has been a lot in the lot news and various parent sites about leaving your children home alone. Would you, should you, how old exactly should they be before you even contemplate it?

Before writing this I thought I would have a little look and see if there is actually any laws or guidelines on this subject and do you know what? There isn't any actual laws at all the NSPCC has some guidelines however.

You would think there there would be something in place wouldn't you? If we as parent could be so easily prosecuted for neglect or abandonment then surely there should be a law in place to help us as parents judge this grey area because lets face it not all of us parents are going to agree are we!

I think I can actually see why as well. I mean each child is unique, some mature quicker than others. Each parent raises their child(ren) differently so who can realistically say what would be right for one would be right for another?

When I was 11 I used to babysit a family friends children. We both lived on the same road and my mum was always home when I was there. To me I felt like I was responsible enough for this as the children weren't babies, the baby was with my mum, and usually they would all be in bed. However this came to an abrupt end when one night the police knocked on the door and asked for my mum. This is when I found out that I was too young to babysit but in 3 months time when I was 12 then that would be perfectly fine. This situation happened again when I was indeed 12 the same neighbour 'concerned' that the children were at risk but they left quite happy that there was no danger and I was mature enough to handle any situation with various phone numbers available to me as contacts and my mum a few doors down.

It's enough to make you wonder, I do now, was I actually  responsible enough at that age and would I ever do that to Olivia? At 8 years old she is far to young to be left in that situation or to be left home alone isn't she! I feel that she is still too young to be able to look after herself should she be on her own and I don't trust her to be able to feed herself past snacks and sandwiches. Saying this, I have on occasion nipped to the shop with her staying in the house. Usually at her request I should add. You can see the shop from my front door it takes me less than a minute to get there and back. I take my keys so she doesn't have to open the door to anyone, I turn the fire off if it is on and the cooker too and Olivia is usually either sitting on the sofa or in her room. She is a sensible girl and I know she won't try anything she shouldn't in the whole 3-4 minutes I am gone except turn the sky over to the disney channel!

This is the extent of my trust though, she is absolutely not old enough to left alone any longer than that and especially not overnight but some more definitive guidelines or laws would be handy to help us out don't you think?

What do you think? I would some other parents views on this subject!

Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Name Dilemmas

Last week I was whiling away the hours on the sofa entering competitions, as you do, and I came across one to win a personalised Christmas plaque for your home. Entry was easy a facebook like and share and answer the question. Simples! Until I actually read the question......
"What name would you like on the plaque?"
Coming with various slogans on along the lines of 'Merry Christmas from the ........... family' and herein lies the issue.

So I'm going to take a deep breath and say it really quick....... *sharp inhale of breath* and Olivia and I have different surnames!

Ours is a household of 2, me and little miss. With 2 different surnames. Totally unsuitable for a plaque of this kind and it got me thinking....... if I can't even celebrate our family with something like this would this cause issue for other things too? And I have to admit it made me feel kinda sad.

Olivia has her dads name. It was always going to be that way. From the moment we found out I was pregnant. I had no real reason not to even though all my nieces have our family name I had no qualms about what surname Olivia was going to have, I mean it's not like I was planning on splitting up with her dad that came years down the line. But still I have never really regretted as such.

I suppose you could call it the curse of single parent families, unmarried parents, children taking their fathers name. For a long time the hospital where she was born refused to accept she didn't have my name as all babies are given mums surname if parents are unmarried but on the whole it didn't really cause any issues for me. And Olivia sounds so much better with her surname than with mine anyway it rolls of the tongue easier!

While I don't regret it I do get a pang of annoyance when people presume we have the same name like teachers at school, doctors, dentists etc but I suppose that's all down to the fact that Olivia and I will never have the same name and it feels so strange. She is my daughter yet we will never share something as simple as that no matter how close we are the only part of our name we share is the same initial Tracey B and Olivia B.  My sisters and I all still have the same surname something which Olivia will never experience should I ever *shudder* choose to reproduce again!

I suppose it could be worse, she could have the name of a father who wasn't around so she is pretty lucky in that respect as I am sure the are children out the with parents who don't deserve the honour of their children carrying on their family name, but it does make me feel proper guilty sometimes, like the time we went on a family holiday to Egypt and when booking, giving in everyone's names it was the same surname all the way down (none of us are married) until we got to Olivia's at the end eliciting an " awww bless" from the travel agent.

Seriously though I don't it bothers her half as much as it bothers me, I think she quite likes being different, she says she prefers her surname to mine but if I knew then what I know now I can't honestly say she wouldn't be Miss Olivia Bowden today but I suppose that's the thing with hindsight........  you only get after the fact!

Do your children have your surname? Or would you never contemplate giving them their dads name if you were unmarried?

Thursday, 6 November 2014

Trendy Tot Thursday 6/11

As last week was half term it gave me plenty of opportunities to grab a snap for this weeks Trendy Thursday post so I thought I would a before and after Halloween pic.

We didn't go out a lot so I let Olivia wear what she wanted and it was mostly dresses and onesies to be honest. So she threw on some summer dresses to sit around the house in, typical Olivia any excuse to throw a dress on.
Dress is from Primark age 10-11 and I think it was £6

Dress is Sainsburys RRP: £9 bought from a local independant discount clothing stall for £3. It is age 9-10. Olivia loves dressing up so Halloween is one of her favourite holidays this year transforming into a Bat Queen! It isalso the first year she let me near her with make up and probably the last as she still had traces of eyeliner on 2 days later! Mummy fail ha!

Trendy Tot Thursday : ClearlyBex

Wednesday, 5 November 2014

Pink for Girls, Blue for Boys?

Hmmmm...... Where to start, where to start. I mean gender defining toys, pink and blue, cars and dolls, it's the way its always been hasn't it. Little girls have always played with dolls and little boys well it's always been cars or trains or something similar hasn't it. Does that mean we just accept it? This is the way it is so just get on with it?

I don't know you know, honestly! I wanted to write this post as I have seen and read a lot lately about so called 'gender defining toys and colours' because personally I don't see an issue with it! Wait, what?!?! That got your attention didn't it but before you get ready to leave me a whopping long comment about gender equality and so on let me explain.........

Do I agree with pink for girls and blue for boys?

Well, I like pink and yes, I do associate it with girls and girly things but would I not give a little boy anything to play with/wear because it was pink? No not really. My baby nephew has many pink things mainly due to him being the only boy and the youngest but do I think it will affect his 'masculinity' or change him as a result no not at all. Would I refuse to buy him something because it was pink and aimed at girls? No I wouldn't the same way I would get something blue for my daughter or nieces if it was something they wanted or was only available in those colours. Colours do not make the child the parent does.

Would I buy my daughter toys aimed at boys and vice versa?

Yes of course. She has actually asked for a Transformer toy for Christmas and I will probably get her one. My daughter enjoys playing with dolls and I have no issue with that at all nor would I if her chosen toys were anything else she likes what she likes and I buy her what she likes, like the blue transformer kinder egg as oppose to the pink barbie one.

Could companies do more to make toys all gender neutral?

Here I am going to say yes. At the end of the day toys are toys and shouldn't be aimed at either boys or girls but I also think that parents shouldn't be biased against this either. So what if your baby boy wants to play with a doll or you little girl is obsessed with cars. Who cares if their favourite colour is pink, blue, red, black after all the toy or the colour of said toy isn't really going to affect them is it.

What is my opinion then?

I suppose what I am getting at is that it really doesn't matter what colour they toy is or exactly who the toy is aimed at because the people buying it are the ones making the choices. They will choose whether or not they will buy the product based on their own thoughts and feelings. If they don't want to buy something for their child based on the colour then they are the ones enforcing the gender divide. Yes, colours could be more neutral and toys aimed at both sexes not just one but for me it doesn't really matter. It doesn't matter to me because regardless of how it is packaged and marketed if my daughter wants it and I feel it is appropriate I will buy it for her. The same way that I will buy pink clothes if I like the look of them and or accessories/decorations (yes her room is pink because pink and purple are her favourite colours but her first choice was black thanks monster high!)

What do you think? Do you agree or disagree? Let the argueing  discussion commence............

Brilliant blog posts on