run out of womb

... learning how to be a mum from scratch

Saturday 31 October 2015

Get stuffed: best baby storage

Seconds after I gave birth to tiny man he began rapidly building up an enormous wardrobe. And now, six months on, a combination of amazingly generous gifts, lots of hand-me-downs, and too many visits to Brent Cross by his mama mean my son's range of shoes, dungarees, socks, and generally cute outfits vastly beats mine ... and my husband's combined. 

But whilst we have two big Ikea wardrobes and drawers plus under-bed clothes storage in our bedroom, tiny man has a single chest of drawers. His nursery is shared with a bureau holding all of our files and papers, and a cupboard storing all of our crockery - it used to be a study/dining room and in our London flat every room now has at least 17 purposes.

So we needed more storage, but didn't have a whole lot of space. I looked for a solution in the obvious place - Ikea - but its nursery furniture is pretty boring and barely durable. Then I found something great in a surprising place: the chic baby store JoJo Mamam Bébé, which I associate with super-cute rompers and lovely print anoraks and sleep suits. But on a visit to its website I found JoJo has really practical storage cubes, where you can build a shape to suit the space and pick the colour of the fabric drawers. 

I went for the blue and red ones above - but these natural hues are lovely too:

or you can opt for fuschia and blue colours. 

The drawers were so easy to build - you do each wooden cube separately, with each one taking me 10 minutes, and needing nothing more than a screwdriver - before popping the fabric drawer inside. And they hold loads too. In our nursery, one is full of towels and sleeping bags, another has toys, another slings and travel kit, and the other has all of tiny man's summer clothes. 
My favourite thing is that you can stack them on top of each other, alongside each other, or have an individual drawer. So I'm going to put two of my cubes whose contents aren't used every day (summer gear and travel kit) under tiny man's cot to save space. They're cheap too - £25 for the cube and £6 for the fabric drawers - so I really recommend them for nursery storage which will be useful all over the house for years to come.

* Item sent to Run Out of Womb for review. Rest assured, though, that I'm seriously gobby and would never rave about something that was rubbish.


Monday 26 October 2015

Underslept Parents + Social Media = Madness

As soon as I became pregnant, I realised that babies and children are one issue on which Everyone Has An Opinion. And so many of those opinions come from social media. 

Often, that's great. I love the baby-focused Facebook groups where you can go for practical advice and others' experiences. 

But they also often host daily eruptions between one parent or another. People get mad, thrust their views where they are not wanted, people get upset. The erupting storm usually looks a little something like this...

1. Someone posts something ridiculous.
2. Someone responds over-aggressively 
3. Someone tries to be reasonable
4. Someone brings up the G-word 
 5. Someone irrelevantly promotes their preferred method of feeding
6. Someone goes po-mo 
7. A blogger/journalist reckons there's a story in this... 
8. The newspapers get interested

9. Columnists and TV chat shows get involved... 

 10. The contents of which are discussed on online parenting groups...

* This post is just supposed to be a joke, don't get mad at me... It has nothing to do with Facebook, Twitter, or any news outlet.


Sunday 25 October 2015

The show where you can buy everything but the baby

"He's almost as tall as you!" is the oh-so-funny joke everyone is currently conjuring up when meeting or re-meeting not-so-tiny man and me at the moment. Because I'm about as tall as a cucumber, so it doesn't take much to catch up with me. 

But the above photo of the titchy two of us isn't because we turned into actual relatives of Arrietty Borrower: it's just that luxury and eco Scandi brand Stokke made some enormous versions of their brilliant high chairs for this weekend's Baby Show. And we're checking them out in the pic.

We had a fun day at the Olympia show. It's huge. To new or soon-to-be parents thinking of going next year, it's the ideal place to go to consider and test products, gadgets, furniture and meet the makers. I had a chat to Cosatto, for example, about a problem with my otherwise excellent Giggle 2 buggy, had a chance to test out the comfy and durable Stokke MyCarrier (more details coming soon), and felt sorry for shocked-looking pregnant women obviously wondering around thinking OMG I'M SO UNPREPARED. (NB, you really don't need to do overdo it: check out my ultimate newborn shopping list to de-stress.) 

I also laughed at some of the stuff on show... Like this ridiculous 'throne' cot: 

I loved this baby bottle chandelier (although it's not a design coming to my home anytime soon)

 Weaning advice from Annabel Karmel was really useful:

 I nabbed a sleep-inducing baby pillow spray from LoveBoo (I'll let you know if it's a snoozy miracle-worker, as I'm hoping..) 

 And I oggled some beautiful baby clothes from the likes of Peachey Boo, Crane Bump & Baby, and Bowties & Candy, and Funky Giraffe's tie-bib.

Other inventions that caught my eye were magnetic babygrows - because I don't know how many poppers I've already snapped - and iCandy's £1,200 buggy that turns into a high chair. Plus Bunny & Clyde's £2500 cot (which admittedly also turns into a bed) made me want to scream to any interested parents STEP AWAY, YOU CAN BUY ALL THE NAPPIES YOU'LL EVER NEED FOR THAT MONEY (maybe.. I don't even want to think about my total annual Pampers bill.)

More than 30,000 parents strolled through the Baby Show's doors this weekend, and I felt like I ran most of them over with my buggy (sorry, still working on spacial awareness..) - it's definitely one to visit if you're a prospective parent. Just step away from anything too ridiculous, or jewelled, or more than £1000...


Thursday 22 October 2015

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas.. with My 1st Years

What do you get if you cross a cute pair of tiny Ugg-like boots with a baby's embroidered name? Or a snug blanket or stocking with the same personalisation? A recipe for Something Every Parent Wants. 

Sure, if you're thinking of having lots of kids you're not going to want everything emblazoned with Kid Number One's name - but Christmas is a time for special splurges so the festive do of specialist personalised gift website My 1st Years was always going to be special.

Tiny Man and I headed to kids' private members club (seriously, these places exist and its Kensington address and co-owner, a friend of Kate Middleton, did make me wonder if Prince George might swing by) for the do. 

My favourite picks for under-the-Christmas-tree were these baby Uggs and cute rucksacks:

Plus the 'Tiny Man's first Christmas...' baby grow, reindeer slippers and personalised stockings in the amazing goodie bag:

And these soft-as-velvet-dressing gowns:

And this fire engine ride-on was a total favourite with Tiny Man.. He wouldn't get off it.. Even though he couldn't even sit on it properly yet. (Well, it did have his name on...)

Here's where all the magic sew-naming happens...


We (OK, I) also loved gobbling these biscuits...

 Whilst Tiny Man grabbed the opportunity to give me a few messages too...

 And finally... ooops!


Review: Moochies phone for kids

The thought of a mobile phone for children would make most parents worried ... about them growing up too fast, being at risk of mugging, etc. But the Moochies watch is specifically designed to keep them safe. The £79.99 watch (which comes in black, orange, pink or blue), works with an app to allow parents to keep tabs on their children - and kids to get in touch. 

The child can ring two phone numbers, whilst pre-approved contacts can phone them. There's an SOS button too - once pressed, it alerts the app holder that the child is in trouble and sends a 15 second recording of all the sounds around the child straight to the parent’s phone - and it's GPS trackable. Recommended for kids aged three to 12, I handed one over to my nieces, Ella and Lily, who are 10 and 7 - and asked them to review it. Their mum Anna, blogger at Don't Cramp Our Style, gives her verdict too.

Moochies watch: review by Ella (age 10)

"In the past two weeks I have been using a kids version of the Apple watch. On this you are allowed to phone two people and receive calls from up to 20 phones. As well as being able to see the time on it! It is a digital watch and is very accurate with the time.

For the review we received the watch with a smartphone which your parents are meant to have, so that you can call them when they download the app (it was already downloaded when we got it.)

The only thing I wasn't too pleased with was the design - I thought it was a bit too young for me, and since young children wouldn't really have this watch because it's a phone, I didn't think it was a particularly good idea to have a pink background with birds flying around it.

And a small piece of advice if you get it: don't lose the instructions. I have, and now I can't figure out how you charge the watch. 

But other than that, I think it is a fantastic invention and you should definitely get one. If you do, enjoy it."

A review by Lily (age 7)

"I think the watch phone is very enjoyable to have. I especially liked phoning my two special people. It would be better if it had games on it,  that would make it lots more fun."

And their mum, Anna, says:

"The child’s watch phone is a great concept. It’s helped me to track where my daughters are in a semi-independent environment such as a playground in a public park, where they are not in my constant view. It would also be useful for older children who make their own way to and from school. Most children are only given the opportunity to travel alone, however, in the last year of primary school and start of secondary school when most of their peers have actual phones. I think at this stage children will see this watch as too limiting and they will be after a smart phone similar to that of their peers. 

The Moochies watch is a useful safety gadget for when your child is in a semi-independent situation but I wouldn’t want my children to be wearing this all day. The impact of mobile phones on our health is still questioned by health professionals and even though it says this watch is designed not to have an impact, I don’t think enough studies have been done on wearing mobile phones to satisfy me that it didn’t put my children’s health at risk. It’s a fun gizmo for occasional use, but not one I’d use regularly."

More info:

* Sent to Run out of Womb for review. Rest assured, though, that I'm seriously gobby and would never rave about something that's rubbish.

Wednesday 21 October 2015

Competition time: win a massage in your own home

What's the quickest way to get a new mama to say 'yes'?
Offer her a professional massage .. in her own home .. that night.

OK,  maybe the offer of 12 hours of uninterrupted sleep might be even more appealing. But next to that, the chance to have an hour's relaxing deep tissue massage wasn't one I was going to turn down.

The offer came via a new app, Uspaah. Its black imagery is reminiscent of instant cab-app Uber, and the service has some similarities too. Whenever you want a massage (or hair do, mani, or pedi) you open the app, scan for a nearby therapist (Or Spaaarhista in its lingo- and they're all certified and security background-checked to ensure their safety), and in central London one will be with you within the hour. 

Mine came prepared with his own massage table, Aroma Works oils and even an iPhone of spa muzak; he was a masseuse who also works in a posh London spa, and instantly used my back-knots to identify which side I carried (now not-so) Tiny Man. It wasn't all entirely soporific: some of the neck kneading was particularly deep 'trigger point therapy', which aims to release tension, but the process killed. Still, I felt relaxed the next day.

There was even a Ferrero Roche left on my table to enjoy at the end of the treatment - and you don't get that at the average spa. 

* USpaah are giving Run out of Womb readers the chance to win a luxury one-hour massage, with the therapist coming to your own home. NB the service is currently only available in London.

If you don't win, the first 100 readers can use exclusive discount code ROW15  to secure a £15 discount off your first booking, (valid until Nov 15).

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Tuesday 20 October 2015

Five best... subscription boxes

Tiny man has officially gone off sleep. For the past few weeks, he's been waking up throughout the night to gurgle, whimper, demand food, cry, or just say hi. And it's making me pretty tired every morning.

But one thing has been putting a smile on my grumpy AM face: the arrival of the postman. Because as well as his usual sheaf of bills, over the past month he's been bringing subscription boxes for me to try. And I've come to realise they're the best thing any new mama could hope to receive.

Some are baby-focused, some are you-focused, some are a mixture... but all are an amazing surprise to get through the door each month. Here are my five best:

This was one of my favourites: a monthly delivery of pretty greetings cards, (and stamps if you want, at Post Office prices), ready for you to send. At £7.50 a month for three cards, it's not exactly budget, but the cards are the beautiful type you find for £3.50 each in Paperchase, all created by cool illustrators - and since you get cards, envelopes and the stamps altogether, they take the stress out of remembering birthdays/anniversaries etc. Nowadays when I actually get round to buying and writing cards, they sit in my handbag unstamped for ages. This makes it easy to be a good friend - although the cards are so nice you might want to keep them for yourself. AND with discount code OUTOFWOMB50 you can nab a 50% discount off your first month's cards and stamps.

A company set up based on the idea that buying gifts that last longer than a bunch of tulips wins top marks: Death to Flowers sent me a cute new-mum box which costs £30. It came in a posh black, magnet-opening box, and contained a knitted carrot rattle that tiny man likes to shake, a delicious big slab of caramel chocolate, a fig bath bomb, organic sleep-inducing balm for babies aged three months-plus, and a tiny music box that plays 'Congratulations'. They're all small, well-made items and treats that you probably wouldn't buy yourself - the mark of a great gift!

* GlossyBox

If you know, or are, a pregnant woman who's worried that baby life means the end of ever looking nice or being glam, this is the subscription for her. Each month, you receive an edit of niche beauty "heroes" - for hassle-free me-time in a box. It costs £28.50 (+P&P) for a three-month subscription, or £54 (+P&P) for six months, although look around for offers as there are lots online that take the price right down. 
My Autumn GlossyBox included an amazing moisturiser - Talika’s Photo-Hydra Day cream - to counter the double-nastiness of central heating / cold walks on skin, and Lanolips, a lip balm whose main ingredient might remind you off a certain nipple cream: it's lanolin. Then there's a blending "Nicka K Airbrush" sponge, Jelly Pong Pong mascara and eye-outlining So Susan Highlighter Pen .. which I really need in the current sleepless situation!

* Almondella

If you think there's something Scandi-cool about Almondella's baby and children's monthly boxes, you're close: it's a Finnish company based on the idea that whilst parents there receive a “starter pack” to help them care for their newborns, this is based around each baby’s learning and development month by month. The emphasis is on environmentally-conscious and creative brands, so lots of the items look straight-out-of-Anthropologie cool. 

I received the weaning box, which is £18.50 (or more if you also opt for the t-shirt or leggings) and included a pretty, organic cotton bib by Studio Roof , a glass baby food bowl, with lid, a soft silicon spoon set by NUK and some funky stripy-print unisex leggings.. the ideal way to help your baby to start enjoying food and to fit into those cute leggings!

OK, it has come to my attention these are four boxes, not the five in the title. Sorry.. I blame that tiredness again.. 

* Boxes sent to Run out of Womb for review. Rest assured, though, that I'm seriously gobby and would never rave about something that's rubbish.

Tuesday 13 October 2015

The worst parenting advice... that you won't be able to avoid

Here's a fact: from the first time you step onto the Tube wearing a 'Baby on Board' sign, strangers believe you are the Leading News Story of the Day: that is, something to judge, discuss, interrogate, and rebuke.

Where previously you will have been able to walk down a street and exchange nothing more than a nod with a passer-by or two, now, as a parent, you are public property. The lady sitting next to me on a bus last week decided to 'advise' me that my five-month-old baby shouldn't be on public transport because "it's not safe". When I politely suggested that, as his mother, it was my decision, she responded, 'I pay for the public services you'll need if he catches something on-board so it's mine too.' 

Luckily, my stop came up before I could chuck a cold bottle of water in her face.

Here, after crowdsourcing on Facebook, parents of babies and children reveal the unwanted advice that strangers (and mothers-in-laws) just can't help offering... 

"My health visitor told me, 'you're too middle class' when I told her that I was doing baby-led weaning and my child had eaten pepper sticks and avocado that day.. She told me to give him vanilla ice cream instead... No thanks!"

"'If you keep your (8-month-old) baby in that forward-facing buggy, she will look at the sun and go blind'. Thanks mad old bat waiting to cross the road, I'll go home and buy another buggy immediately."

"When I was six-months pregnant with my first baby, I was talking to my mother-in-law about the things I had bought for the baby, and that I didn't want the cot to be built yet as I was supersticious. She said, 'well if anything bad happens you can then sell it on eBay!"

"My son was born at 13.13, and had extra digits on each hand too.."Ooh" exclaimed the midwife, "Are you sure you don't want to call him Damien!"

"I was in a GP's waiting room on a sweltering-hot day. My six-week old baby was wearing a sleeveless vest top; he was crying, as he did constantly for the first three months, when the lady next to me said, "maybe he's hot". I replied 'of course he's hot, we all are. Short of stripping him naked I can't do anything more to cool him down in here..."

"A relative said to me as I fed my six-month-year-old: 'don't you think you should give up breast feeding now he is weaning as you're going to get all saggy?" Umm - thanks and f**k off."

"'You need to go on a parenting course' - my health visitor told me on watching my two-year-old son. It turned out he had autism."

"When my baby was six days old, the health visitor came. 'Your baby is hungry, he is rooting,' she said. Then, 'He is still hungry, he is rooting..' Then, 'Goodness you have a hungry one he is rooting again ....' (She stayed for an hour). Feeling under pressure, I fed him each time. As she put her shoes on to leave, my newborn threw up everywhere ....with a stomach the size of a marble she made me feed him until he nearly drowned!'

"Before I started weaning my baby, my mother-in-law kept asking, 'can't I just let him taste some chocolate cake icing from my finger?' No, no you can't!"

"Cover your upper body up with a sweater or shawl when you're breast feeding, in case your milk gets cold," I was told. "And don't eat ice cream while breast feeding as the baby will catch a cold. And, don't drink anything fizzy as that will give baby gas..."

"A stranger saw me making up a bottle and said, 'it's better to give your baby breastmilk with alcohol in it than formula.' I just responded, 'Yeah cool, I'm just gonna make up a bottle now, see you later!'"

"I had post-natal depression after my boy was born. He was in intensive care for five days after birth and tube fed. Then he developed reflux and was generally a difficult baby. At nine weeks he hadn't smiled and the health visitor said, 'well he hasn't got much to smile about'.. That comment caused me months of trauma."

"You're delaying his brain development by continuing to feed him yourself" - my health-visitor when my son was three-months old.

"I've been staying with family the last few days, and my four-week old was uncomfortable. Turns out he had trapped wind, so I rubbed his tummy and he did a massive poop. But this is what the family suggested was the cause in the meantime: 'baby got trapped wind cause you've been eating lentils, peas, and sweetcorn'. 'Don't eat too quick.' 'Don't eat bananas'. Don't wash dishes and if you must use gloves. Hands in water will give baby a cold.' My ears started to bleed listening to so much crap!"

"A stranger asked me if my baby was still breathing in the sling .... I felt like saying, no, I bring her up for air every 30 seconds.."

"When my daughter was about two-and-a-half and started to exhibit, shall we say, 'challenging behaviour, my step dad asked in all seriousness "so when do you start the hitting?" As if this was a natural step to take.."

"'Sleep when they sleep,' everyone says to me, all the time. What. If. They. Never. Sleep?"

"I don't think you should take your baby daughter swimming, I'm a retired midwife and in my day that's how people caught polio."

Sunday 11 October 2015

Competition time! Win luxury kids' dungarees

Standing in Topshop with my mum and my baby in his buggy a few months ago, I turned to my mum, picked up a pair of ripped blue dungaree-shorts and asked if, now I was a mother and supposed grown-up, I was too old to wear them. 

We decided not, and I happily pulled on those dungarees all summer long. And when I'm picking an outfit for my baby boy, I go for dungarees alllll the time. Fun stripy shorts ones for summer, cosy corduroy ones now we're heading into Autumn. They're robust, comfy and hard-wearing. And OH SO CUTE!

So when Dotty Dungarees, an online store exclusively selling dungas for kids ("in the softest fabrics in a range of bright colours"), came onto our horizon, we had to test them out on Run out of Womb

To really check out their hardiness, a friend's crawling and walking one-year-old tried out the Otto dungarees: soft blue stripy fabric and dotted insides, with a cotton jersey lining. 

This was his mum's verdict: "I love these - you can turn up the bottoms and adjust the straps, so although they're pricier than, say, Baby Gap's, they'll last for ages and are really great quality. Baby H happily scampers about in them all day, looking smart, and I've put them through the machine and dryer four times without any bobbling. Changing is easy with easy nappy-access between the legs. With a polo T underneath, they're my new favourite outfit for snazzy occasions when you still want your baba to be happy and comfy."

Dotty Dungarees come in 24 varieties, including dresses, aged 3m to 5 years, and cost £35 to £41. Here some close-ups of a few of their gorgeous designs:

And now you can win your own. Dotty Dungarees are giving Run Out of Womb readers the chance to win a pair of dungarees of your choice, gift-wrapped and packaged in a cotton DD rucksack. Here's how...

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday 8 October 2015

Around town: The Toy Store

Growing up in London, to be taken to Hamleys was just about the best day out around. So much so that re-visiting the Regent's Street toy shop nowadays always makes it seem like an entirely different place to that in my imagination - didn't it have endless space and a skyscraper-number of floors and toys that went on forever, rather than the tourist-packed aisles of today?

But Hamleys has been the grande dame of London's toy shops for eons - so when tiny man and I were invited to the opening of The Toy Store, a 27,000 sq ft dazzling, brand-packed emporium taking on Hamleys on its own patch, we had to check it out.

The location is more central than the beans in a baby's rattle: just next door Bond St station, with big escalators leading you in from Oxford Street. (To access the lift, for buggy-users, you have to go into the ground-floor section, and pass a huge sweet shop so maybe take a blindfold if you've got hungry older kids with you too..) 

It's very brand-focused: the likes of Lego, Barbie, Marvin's Magic and Thomas & Friends have huge areas, but it's also divided up into zones - creative, models, etc. And there's lots going on: kids zipping around testing out scooters, model helicopters buzzing overhead, huge characters strolling the aisles - a little like a free version of Disneyland, but good luck convincing the kids of that.

The customer service was pretty good too: Tiny Man picked out a Little Tykes toy turtle, which sang, popped out shapes and moved. Only when we got it home, battled with the packaging and put batteries in, turned out the turtle didn't sing, the shapes wouldn't stay in, and it wasn't too keen on moving either. 

Luckily, The Toy Store staff were happy to switch it to a working one when we returned, with no fuss. This store definitely doesn't have the history or tradition of Hamleys, but that won't stop the kids loving it and its wares.

* Shop invited Run out of Womb for review, and provided a voucher. Rest assured, though, that I'm seriously gobby and would never rave about something that's rubbish.


Wednesday 7 October 2015

Speedy, healthy working-from-home lunch

Sometimes I read recipes for 'easy, healthy lunches' and they involve 'popping outside to your herb allotment' or marinating 12 separate ingredients for a salad. Whilst I'm pretty good at shopping for and cooking nice dinners, lunch is a speedy, solo affair (solo eating - tiny man is always watching and singing alongside) based on whatever is in the fridge. 

Since that's rarely anything exciting like roast chicken ready to be ripped into a delicious salad, the default meal has become microwave-melted cheese-on-toast (or, on a baby-won't-be-left-day, bread). It's hardly healthy, and gets boring. So when I had brunch at a friend's apartment and he made a delicious aubergine dish in about 2 minutes, I had to repeat it.

Yes, you need an aubergine and some leaves in the fridge, but that's it. It's a one-pan dish for an easy, tasty lunch.


One aubergine, sliced as thick as a £1 coin
Two tablespoons of honey
Good shake of soy sauce
Clove of garlic, crushed
Pine nuts
Chili flakes if you like
Olive oil

Toss all the ingredients bar the oil and pine nuts together; then heat up the oil in a wok or frying pan on high. Cook for 3 minutes, adding pine nuts to toast for the last minute, then whack the pan in the oven for five minutes.
 Serve on a bunch of spinach or other leaves.


Tuesday 6 October 2015

Some (more) of my favourite things

Number One is... Scarlet Ribbon Merino daysuit. For smart events, I'm not one of those who loves pouring a tiny baby into a faux three-piece suit. So when we had a posh family occasion coming up, this beautiful outfit perfectly fitted the bill. It's made of soft merino wool, has a zip (with material between it and the baba's skin) running the whole length for easy nappy changes, and is very smart and cosy for a baby who looks suitably trussed up when everyone is wearing their finery, but is still comfy. It's pricey - £50 - but is such good quality that in my family it will definitely become a baby heirloom to be passed amongst new tinies. (Oh, and don't worry - it's machine washable at 40 despite being merino wool. Surely no one bar Wills and Kate buy dry clean-only baby wear?)*

Number two is... Comotomo silicone teether. I'm not going to sh*t on Sophie: the famous giraffe does great stuff in our home for tiny man to chew on as we have meals. But this teether is a fave too: easy to grip, easy to wash, and apparently very soothing as it keeps the red-faced dribbling one quiet for a fair whack of time.

Number three is... Stokke MyCarrier. The second sling to enter our house, this is so robust. It has actual rock climbing-style carabiners (although none of the weight that that implies) to make sure your baba stays secure and safe, which will give much peace of mind as they grow older too. Unlike lots of rivals, the MyCarrier lasts for up-to three year olds - you can switch it around and carry them on your back. There's also a head support, for when your baby is sleeping, kept safe in a sling pocket, which I really love because often babies' slumping heads look so uncomfortable and painful in slings. The best thing, though, is that you can fit your baby/toddler inside the sling and THEN put it on - something I've found impossible with other slings and is much safer and easier, especially when you're out without your partner/another grown-up.* 

Number four is... Our whole flat is a baby explosive zone (jumperoo in the corridor, bouncer and chair in the kitchen, bumbo in the lounge, tiny socks kicked off everywhere) and the bath is no different: squirtable whales hang out with floating books and spill out everywhere. But the bath is also the one place I love to relax - so am grateful that this Munchkin baby bath toy organiser lies flush across the bath at one end (as far as possible from my head..) and neatly contains all the paraphernalia. Or as neatly as a squirtable whale can be contained. And during baby bath time, it stops them reaching the taps/plug.*

Number five is...We're weaning. The. Food. Flies. Everywhere. But this huge-coverage bib from JoJo keeps the tiny man's clothes clean, at least. Shame they don't make one in adult-size for me.

Number six is... Mothercare XXS buggy. Wrote about it at length here - but can't list my current favourite things without a mention for this ultra compact foldable buggy.*

Number seven is.... Tesco Nappies. Never thought I'd see an absorbent wad of wee-container as one of my favourite things, but after six months of Pampers we switched to Tesco's. Half the price and just as good: top marks.

Number eight is... Petit Bateau dungarees. True to their Parisian homeland, these dungarees are much slimmer fitting than their Gap etc rivals - perfect for my skinny man, they're a snug winter essential.

Number nine is... Vanish. What can I say? We're going through a lot of poo-namis at the moment...

* Sent to Run out of Womb for review. Rest assured, though, that I'm seriously gobby and would never rave about something that's rubbish.
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