How to soothe a cough at night

The magic trick to soothe a cough at night

This may well by the most wonderful time of the year, but it’s also the time of year when everyone and his dog seems to be suffering with bugs and coughs and colds.

School-age children in particular seem to like sharing germs among themselves, and then bringing them home for the rest of the family to enjoy.

What’s so frustrating about coughs and colds is that there isn’t all that much you can do to chase them away.

If a cough is keeping your child (and the rest of the family) up at night though, there is a slightly random trick that you can try to soothe it.

 

All you need is a tub of vapour rub and a pair of socks.

You can use Vicks VapoRub or you can use an own-brand version from the chemist, it really doesn’t matter.

What you need to do is put a good blob of the stuff onto the soles of your child’s feet at bedtime, and then put a pair of socks on over the top.  The socks are mostly important for keeping the vapour rub from getting all over the sheets, but I think they also help by keeping the feet warm.

What you should find is that this is enough to soothe their cough; letting them get to sleep, and stay that way through the night.

 

Now I’ve read a fair few articles about this trick since I first heard about it, and no one has any real idea why it works.

Some people think it’s just a placebo effect.

Others think it might to do with reflexology.

The theory that I think sounds most likely is that the vapour rub on your feet acts as a counter-irritant, so your body focuses on that rather than the tickle in your throat, so you end up coughing less.

 

Whatever the reason behind it, so many parents have tried this on their children and themselves with amazing results.

I’ve done it myself when we’ve had troublesome coughs disturbing our sleep and it has worked like a charm.

 

So next time your child brings some lovely germs home from school, give this trick a try so you can all still get a good night’s sleep!

 

Have you tried this trick before?  Does it work for you and your children?

major life events more stressful for parents

Are major life events more stressful for parents?

I remember my mum telling me not long after I had Rhys that you lose several layers of skin when you become a mum.

Not literally of course, but metaphorically.

You open yourself and your heart up to so much more when you have a child.  I was never particularly thick-skinned anyway but I know that some things get to me so much more now that I’m a parent.

Like how I can’t seem to watch a nativity play without fighting back tears.  Something so small just hits me in an overly emotional way now I have my own children.

So it makes complete sense to think that big life events can be more stressful, and more emotional, for parents than for people without children.

 

I think it’s partly to do with the different hormones that our bodies produce throughout pregnancy and in response to caring for our children once they’re born.

And while lots of people claim that baby brain isn’t a thing, I’m convinced that our brains rewire themselves as mothers.  Our priorities change, as we’re suddenly completely responsible for the wellbeing of this tiny person.

 

When it comes to big life events like moving house or making big career decisions, we’re not just thinking about ourselves any more.  We have to factor in how these choices will affect the whole family.

We have to somehow make sure that everyone’s needs are met, while dealing with potentially a lot of upheaval.

Moving house is quite often mentioned as one of the most stressful life events, along with things like the death of a loved one, divorce and imprisonment.  A study was recently carried out by Online Mortgage Advisor which asked 1307 people who had completed on their house about their experiences.  64% of these people said that the process of moving home was the most stressful thing they’d experienced in the last 5 years.

Another 30% of these people said it was in their top 5 most stressful experiences of the last 5 years.

 

What’s particularly interesting is that they found that parents were twice as likely than non-parents to describe their stress levels when moving home as ‘extreme’.    And women were more likely than men to experience stress in general during the process of moving home.

 

It does make sense though, that parents would find moving house particularly stressful.

There are so many more factors to consider when you have children.  Are you moving to a good school catchment area?  Will your children settle in well in the new house?  How on earth do you work out the logistics of packing up a house and setting up in a new home with children of any age under your feet?!

And while you’re working through all of these thoughts you’re also dealing with the emotional side of it all.  That thin skin that my mum told me about means that the slightest comment from a child about not wanting to move house can hit so much harder than it should.

You second guess your choices at every turn and worry that you’re doing the right thing.

 

It’s the same with making big decisions about your career.

So many women struggle with the decision to go back to work outside the home after having children.  It seems that whatever choice you make you feel guilty about it, and you worry about the impact it will have on your family.

 

I think the thing to remember is that this new level of worry and stress and just feeling everything ten times more is completely normal.

And if you’re worrying that the choice you’re making means you’re a bad parent then you’re almost certainly an amazing one.

The best thing you can do is talk it through.

If you’re going through a major change in your life find someone to chat to about it all.  Also, more and more companies are realising that they need to address the emotional impact of things like moving house too.

Online Mortgage Advisor have worked with a clarity coach to create an online wellbeing portal for homeowners, full of advice to help ease some of the stress tied in with moving home.

So if you’re thinking above moving, or are in the process of moving at the moment, that could help make things a bit less stressful.

 

Have you found that you’re more emotional and things hit you harder now that you’re a parent?  What big life events and changes have you experienced since having your children?

 

Disclosure: this is a collaborative post

Spice of Life to spice things up

Spice things up with Life of Spice

Disclosure: I was sent these spices for the purpose of writing this post, however all words, photos and opinions are my own.

The older I get, the more I realise I’m a creature of habit.

I find myself falling into routines and patterns with things like the meals we eat, and end up having the same things week after week.  It’s not necessarily a bad thing, I really love the meals that we eat, especially with my husband cooking for us more.

It is good to spice things up now and then though.  To try some new recipes and some new flavours.

So when I was offered some spice and rub collections from Life of Spice to try out I couldn’t wait to open them up and get cooking with them.

 

I was sent both the Italian Collection and the American Rub Collection gift sets to try out.

The Italian Collection comes in a lovely gift box which is a big plus if you want to give a set to someone as a present.

Inside the box are three metal tins of spice blends.

The Italian Job is a mixture of salt and Italian herbs (basil, thyme, oregano).  Italian Herbs is a classic mix of oregano, thyme and rosemary, and Pepper Smurf is a peppered rub with rosemary, basil, marjoram and citrus.

 

I love that this collection has 3 different types of seasoning blend, so you can use them for so many different types of cooking.

The Italian Herbs and The Italian Job are great to use in pasta sauces and would also work really well with things like roast potatoes or wedges.  The Pepper Smurf rub is perfect for rubbing into meats before grilling or barbecuing.

 

The second collection I was sent was the American Rub Collection, which has 5 different tins in the box.

Memphis Belle is an authentic Tennessee BBQ rub, while Kansas City Rib Rub brings the flavours of the Midwest.  Much Adobo About Nothing is an adobo spice blend which is perfect for fajitas and chilli.  Savannah Gold is a vibrant spice blend with mustard and garlic, and Sweet Home Alabama is a rich and smoky Southern spice rub.

 

When you open up the tins the smell you get is amazing, and what’s great is that each mix is distinctive enough from the rest of the collection.

 

A few of the rubs are labelled as being ‘barbecue’ rubs, and they would be absolutely amazing to use on all sorts of meats to go on the barbecue in the summer.

The real beauty of these rubs though is you don’t have to use them for barbecues.  Or even meat for that matter.

You can use them to give amazing flavour to roasted vegetables and they’d be great for adding flavour to tofu.  And the Much Adobo About Nothing would be perfect to use in a veggie chilli or to give a bit of a kick to a shepherd’s pie made with vegetarian mince.

 

I knew exactly what I wanted to make though, as soon as these spices arrived.

I used the Kansas City Rib Rub to spice up some slices of halloumi.

 

This rub is a gorgeous burnt orange shade and has a lovely smokey barbecue smell to it.

It was ridiculously easy to use too.

I just sliced up some halloumi and rubbed the spice mix into both sides of the slices.

Then I heated some oil in a pan and cooked the halloumi slices for a few minutes on each side.  You could hear the spices sizzling in the oil as they cooked and the whole kitchen smelt amazing!

If you wanted you could layer some of the cooked halloumi slices in a bun with some mayo and lettuce and have it as a burger, which actually I think I’ll have to try next time.

What I did this time though was serve it with cous cous, which is something Steve and I used to have all the time when we were first living together.

 

I cooked the cous cous then added some of the Italian Herbs from the Italian collection for a bit of added flavour, then stirred in some chopped peppers.

Keeping the cous cous quite simple meant that the star of the show, the spiced halloumi, could really have it’s moment.

And oh my word it was good!

The saltiness of the cheese together with the smokey flavour and bit of heat from the rub worked so well together.  I would say I can see this become a new regular fixture on our weekly menu, but actually I think we could still keep things interesting by using a different spice rub each time!

 

Special reader offer:

If you want to try the Spice of Life spices for yourself, or get some for the foodie in your life as a present, then I have a great offer to share with you.

Buy any of the collections from the Spice of Life website and use code LOS–NDBLG at the checkout to get an extra tin of spices absolutely free!

 

So what are you waiting for?  Go break out of your food rut and spice things up!

Perfect gifts for coffee lovers

The perfect gifts for coffee lovers

This post contains affiliate links

One of my favourite websites to browse for presents for other people, or something a bit different for myself, is Etsy.

There are so many amazingly talented people on there selling everything from mugs to art to jewellery and clothing.  And what’s lovely is that when you buy from one of these shops you’re supporting a small business.  Lots of the shops on there are run by just one person, making their pieces with love and attention from their kitchen table.

I’ve put together my picks for the perfect gifts for anyone who needs a cup of coffee to get going in the morning.  So that’s basically all us parents then!

If you want to make a small business owner do a happy dance this Christmas, and make a coffee-lover’s day with the perfect gift, here are my ideas for presents to buy.

 

A cute ‘coffee for life’ pin badge.

This little badge is the perfect way to wear your love of coffee on your sleeve.  Or your lapel.  Or bag.

It’s from Old English Co. on Etsy and is made from black enamel with gold plating.

They have over 100 different pin badge designs in their shop and they’re all really cute, but this one is at the top of my list and is perfect for coffee lovers.

 

A just-as-cute coffee for life sweatshirt.

This grey sweatshirt would be perfect for lazy Sunday mornings curled up with a huge mug of coffee.

 

A caffeine keyring for the science-loving coffee drinker.

This keyring is handmade by Naturally Bespoke and can be personalised, so no two pieces will be exactly the same.

I love the fact that you wouldn’t really know what the design was on this keyring if you’re not a science lover, so it’s a more subtle nod to a coffee addiction.

 

Another pin badge, to declare your caffeine-dependant status.

This black enamel pin has the words ‘caffeine reliance alliance’ on it in gold writing and is perfect for any member of the coffee drinking club.

 

A sweet treat that combines coffee and chocolate

I mean, is there a better double act than coffee and chocolate?

These Mocha dark chocolate truffles from Bake Me Sweet on Etsy look amazing.  The perfect sweet treat for any coffee lover.

 

A fun, and sweet, way to add a twist to a cup of coffee

For the coffee drinker who likes things sweet, these Irish cream flavour sugar spoons would make a great gift.

The spoons are about 10cm long and come in a pack of 5.  All you have to do is pop one in a hot cup of coffee and give it a stir as it melts to give a lovely kick of flavour to your drink.

 

A ‘first I drink coffee’ print to make them smile in the mornings.

This print from Tidy Prints is available in several different sizes so they can be subtle about their love of coffee or display it big and proud in their home!

 

A gorgeous rainbow watercolour heart mug for the first cup of coffee on a gloomy morning.

This is so bright and colourful it would make anyone smile as they drink their coffee.

 

A cute Happy Earth travel mug for coffee on the go.

For the coffee drinker who is always out and about a travel mug is a great gift idea, and the design on this one is just so cute.

 

A delicious coffee selection box.

If you want something that can be posted directly to their door, then this is a great option.

Each box comes with 4 different coffees for them to sample.

 

So there you have it, my picks for the perfect gifts for coffee lovers.

Which of these would you most like to unwrap on Christmas day?

 

If you want more inspiration then Etsy have got a few gift guides you can check out including one full of personalised gift ideas and one with gifts all under £30.

 



Review VonHaus handheld vacuum cleaner

VonHaus cordless handheld vacuum review

Disclosure: I was sent this vacuum for the purpose of writing this review.  All words, photos and opinions are my own.

I am not a domestic goddess.  When it comes to cleaning and tidying, I do what I can but I’m definitely no Mrs Hinch.

My home falls into the ‘lived in’ category and I’m happy with that.  I want people to feel like they can come in and be at home here, rather than worrying about leaving marks on my pristine sofa or a bit of mud on my perfect floor.

There are two things that bother me though, when it comes to how clean and tidy my house is.

One is when all the surfaces are full of clutter and the other is when the floors are dirty.  When these two things are sorted I feel so much better about how my house looks and feels.

The thing with the floors is that they’re mostly laminate in our house which seems to accumulate dust and dirt ridiculously quickly.  I wanted something that I could grab quickly and do a once-over of the floors on a regular basis to keep on top of this.

So when the lovely people at VonHaus said they’d like to send me a cordless vacuum cleaner to review I was more than a little excited.

 

The first thing I noticed when the vacuum arrived was how small the box was!

I’m not sure what I was expecting to be honest, but I was surprised when the box was delivered.  What I wasn’t surprised by was how excited I was to open it up.  I know it’s such a boring grown-up thing to be excited about, but a cordless vacuum cleaner really has been on my wishlist for such a long time.

 

As you’d expect, especially considering the size of the box, the vacuum was in several different pieces in the box and needed to be assembled.

There was a small instruction manual included which wasn’t the most detailed thing ever, but was enough to work out how to connect everything.

The first thing I needed to do was push the battery unit into the main part of the vacuum cleaner, and this was easy enough.  There’s a satisfying click that lets you know it’s done properly.  Then I had to really test my patience and let the thing charge before I could put it through its paces.

 

It takes around 4 hours for the battery to fully charge from flat, and then it’ll run for around 20-30 minutes before needing to be charged again.

I’ve had the vacuum for about a month now and generally find that I can do our house 2-3 times before it needs to be charged.  What I really like is that the green power light that comes on when you use the vacuum starts to flash red when the battery is running low.  So you have a bit of a warning instead of just turning off all of a sudden.

 

The first time I assembled the vacuum after it had charged I did find it a bit tricky.

You need to attach the dust tank to the main unit and I couldn’t find anything in the instruction manual about how you do this.  Turns out it is quite simple, but you need to be quite forceful with it.  Make sure everything is lined up and then give it a good push into place.

Then it’s just a case of deciding what attachment to use first.

Most of the time around the house I use the vacuum as an upright cleaner, with the extension attachment and floor brush attached.

 

Most of the rooms in my house are laminate and this cordless vacuum is absolutely brilliant for picking up all the crumbs, dirt and dust that seem to accumulate overnight.

It’s really easy to use, just press the button on the handle once to get it started, and then again if you want a bit more suction power.

I find that for the hard floors the first setting is absolutely fine.  But if I want to vacuum the carpets on the stairs and landing, or the big rug in our living room, then I need the extra power boost.

 

The vacuum itself is nice and lightweight so it’s really easy to whizz around the house with it. 

The floor brush swivels around brilliantly too, so you can manoeuvre round the furniture so easily.  I find vacuuming the stairs with our old corded cleaner really awkward and hard work, but with this cordless vacuum it’s so easy.

 

On days that I’m doing a bit more of a clean around the house I’ll pop the floor brush off and use one of the crevice tools to reach up and clean the top corners of the rooms and around lampshades.

It’s really easy to change the tools, just press the orange attachment release button and pull the attachment out.  Then push the next one in until you hear that satisfying click.

And when you want to switch to the handheld set up you just take out the extension pole and push the attachment into the main unit.

This little machine is so handy!

I use it to get right in along our skirting boards and along the sides/backs of the stairs.  It’s also perfect for using in the car to clear up all the crumbs and dirt that the children leave behind on a regular basis.

 

The dust tank has a capacity of 0.5l, so it’s not huge but big enough to hold the dust and dirt from a go around the house.

It’s so easy to empty too, just unclip the bottom to release it and everything falls right out into the bin.  Once you get into the habit of emptying it after each use it’s no big deal at all.

One thing we really love about this vacuum is that it has an advanced HEPA filter, so it keeps in allergens, bacteria and other microparticles, rather that putting them back into the air. Steve has asthma that’s triggered by dust, so this is filter is a big plus for us.  And the filter itself is really easy to take out and clean with water.

 

We’ve been using the VonHaus cordless vacuum for around a month now and I absolutely love it.

It’s really compact so it lives in a corner near the hallway, tucked out of sight but ready to be grabbed whenever it’s needed.  The charging unit can be wall mounted if you have the space for that, which is a really lovely feature.  We just plug the charger in when we need it and sit the vacuum on the floor while it charges.

 

With it being cordless it’s so easy to pick up and use for a quick clean around whenever I need.

Our old vacuum is corded and because it’s bigger it lives in the cupboard under the stairs so it feels like so much more effort to get it out and use it.  And then you’re dancing around the cord the whole time, and having to unplug it each time you move to a different room.

The VonHaus vacuum feels so effortless to use in comparison.  

I can whizz around from room to room, and up the stairs, without needing to stop.  And with it being so light and simple to use, the children can manage it too.

We’re working on teaching them to take a bit more responsibility, to clean up their own messes and so on, and this vacuum is a great tool to have to help with that.  When they leave a load of crumbs under their seats then I can hand them the handheld unit and they can clean it up themselves.

 

I had been after a cordless vacuum for so long, I’m thrilled that this one from VonHaus doesn’t disappoint.

It feels sturdy in your hand, has great suction power and just the right amount of attachments to do all the jobs I need it to do.  The 30 minute run time is great and more than enough to get my house clean, and it tucks away nicely when we’re not using it.

 

You can get this particular vacuum from the VonHaus website for £89.99 which is a brilliant price for a cordless vacuum.

 

Disclosure: I was sent this vacuum for the purpose of writing this review.  All words, photos and opinions are my own.

The toys came to play shopDisney

The day the toys came to play from shopDisney

We were sent these items from shopDisney as gifts, however all words, photos and opinions are my own.

 

A rather exciting box arrived at my house last week while the children were at school.

The picture of Mickey Mouse on the outside gave me a hint that it might be some gifts for the children from shopDisney who had been in touch to see if we would like to review some soft toys and a few other special items.

When I opened the box I couldn’t help smiling as the words “Twas the night before Christmas when all through the house, not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse” were written on one of the inside edges.  I just thought it was such a lovely touch!

The box was full of soft toys from some of the children’s favourite films, as well as beautifully soft pyjamas and cushions for them.

When I saw all the different characters I had an idea for a fun way to tell the story of how they all came to our house to have a slumber party with the children…

 

It all started with Mickey and Minnie Mouse.

They had a great time on their way to see us, exploring the beaches of Gower and stopping a few times to take in the views.

 

The Gower Peninsula was chosen as the very first Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty in the UK and Mickey and Minnie loved how peaceful it was at this time of year.

Although they may have had to pop into a cave to shelter from a rain storm at one point during their beach visit!

 

While they were busy enjoying the Gower, the other toys were making their way to our house through the local parks.

Stitch made a stop off at the playpark in Brynmill for a swing and a slide before the local children arrived.

 

Across the other side of the park Nemo swam through the lake before jumping out to find a way to get to the house with the others.

He had a great time in the water there, swimming with the ducks and the other fish.

 

As the toys were busy travelling across Swansea we got a strange feeling that something funny was going on.

When we were out in the park we thought we saw movement now and then, but couldn’t quite catch sight of anything.  Rhys even stopped a few times to peek behind us and around bushes trying to catch a glimpse, and he thought he may have seen a little deer at one point.

 

Turns out it may have been Bambi that he spotted, as she enjoyed spending a bit of time in nature on her way to visit us.

 

As all the toys got closer to our house, ready to enjoy a slumber party with the children, Lotso took the lead to make sure the coast was clear for them all to sneak in.

He quietly led them all up the steps and into the house.

 

While we were out the toys snuck into the bedroom and got all cosy ready for a fun slumber party with Rhys and Nerys.

They even left them each a pair of cosy pyjamas downstairs as a clue that something exciting was going on.

When we came home the children were thrilled to spot their new pjs, and put them straight on before running upstairs to see what was waiting for them.  They were so excited when they stuck their heads round the bedroom door and saw what the toys had organised.

 

The children piled on the bed with the toys and the fun really started.

 

The children had great fun telling the toys how much they loved their new pyjamas.

Rhys has a pair of Mickey Mouse pjs, with a cosy fleecy top and soft cotton trousers.

 

Rhys is 8 but is a bit shorter than average for his age, so these pyjamas in age 7-8 are a really lovely fit for him.

There’s a bit of room to grow still, while still being really snuggly and cosy.

 

Nerys is only 5 but is tall like her dad, so her pyjamas are age 7-8 too.

They’re a little big on her, but that just makes them look even cuter.  And I love the fact that they should last her for next winter too, as they’re so fleecy and warm which is perfect in the colder months.

 

These Minnie Mouse pjs are so soft, and they’re fleecy on the inside too so they feel really nice on her skin.

The soft pink colour is really pretty too and Nerys has worn them loads since she first got them.

She really loves the fact that they have Minnie Mouse on them, and she spent ages cuddling her Minnie Mouse plush toy during the slumber party the toys had arranged.

 

Lotso also got shown a lot of love, even though he’s a not the nicest of characters in Toy Story!

This plush toy is unbelievably soft and the perfect size for cuddles.  The best part though is that he really does smell of strawberries – I would love to fall asleep cuddling up to a sweet smelling teddy like this!

Along with the cosy pyjamas the toys also brought some beautifully soft cushions for the children.

There is a Pua cushion that Nerys grabbed straight away and declared her favourite, as well as one designed to look like one of the aliens from Toy Story which Rhys really loved.

The best part about these cushions though, is that they open up into blankets.  They’re £15 at shopDisney which I think is really reasonable.  They feel so soft and great quality and would be a lovely present for anyone who likes to cwtch up on the sofa and watch Disney films.  I have a feeling we’ll get a lot of use out of ours doing just that this winter!

 

Rhys and Nerys are both thrilled with all the gorgeous things that the lovely people at shopDisney sent us.  The soft toys are all a brilliant size for cuddling either on the sofa or at bedtime, and they are all such great quality.

I’ve been browsing shopDisney.co.uk and they have got a huge range of toys on there, featuring everyone’s favourite characters.  And it’s not just Disney characters either, there are loads of toys from Pixar, Marvel and Star Wars too so there really is something for everyone.

If you have a little movie fan to buy for this Christmas then shopDisney is definitely worth a visit.  Actually it’s worth a look for the grown up Disney fans in your life too.  I spotted loads of mugs I’d like to add to my collection and there are all sorts of bowls and plates and dishes on there to add so much fun to mealtimes.

 

Are your family all Disney fans? 

Which soft toy would your child most like to come to your house for a slumber party?!

 

Disclosure: We were sent these items from shopDisney as gifts, however all words, photos and opinions are my own.

This post is linked up with KCACOLS.

Christmas Getaways_ top christmas destinations for new parents (2)

Christmas Getaways: top Christmas destinations for new parents

If you’ve recently became a new parent, you may find it hard to enjoy time together as a family on top of work and busy schedules. So, as the holiday season is just around the corner, you should try and make the most of it! But what are the best destinations for babies and tots? 

In this article, we’ve discovered the top child-friendly Christmas destinations for you to choose from, as well as provided a selection of tips for travelling with youngsters. 

 

Lapland

Lapland is the best destination to take your children for a white Christmas. This is more a destination for parents with infants, but if you do take your newborn, make sure they’re wrapped up warm. Here, you can visit the spectacular snow villages, meet the reindeers and say hello to Santa himself. Think of your children waking up to snow-covered trees outside on Christmas Day! 

However, it can get extremely cold at this time of year though. Make sure that you do your research and pack what’s necessary to make sure that your tots stay cosy in the outdoors and in their baby pushchairs. There are many activities to do when you arrive in Lapland — from riding a snowmobile to taking a trip in a reindeer sleigh, it’ll certainly get everyone in the Christmas spirit. 

 

The Algarve 

The Algarve region can be reached in around two-and-a-half to three hours by plane. So, if you think your little one can handle the journey, treat yourself to a holiday abroad. Here, you can enjoy a warmer climate without having to worry about keeping your baby totally covered from the sun. 

As well as the Algarve being a popular holiday destination for Brits, the Algarve region has plenty of child-friendly resorts, hotels and activities that will suit kids from newborn to toddler. Since the autumn and winter season is a quieter time of year, it’s recommended that you travel to the larger resort towns such as Albufeira or Praia de Rocha, where not as many restaurants and activity centres will be closed.

 

Disneyland Paris 

What youngsters don’t love Disney? Especially around Christmas time! Although this destination may be best suited to kids around three years old and over, all children will enjoy the colours, lights and characters of Disneyland Paris. Plus, you have a collection of great, family-friendly Disney hotels to stay in, which will make travelling to and from the park much less stressful! 

This is a great holiday choice if you’re travelling with babies or excitable toddlers. At Disneyland Paris, you have a wide selection of shows, rides and attractions designed to captivate and entertain babies, toddlers and adults. Over Christmas, you can expect to see Disney’s Christmas Parade where everyone’s favourite characters make their way through the streets of the park. The ‘World’s Biggest Mouse Party’ also takes place, where children can meet and greet Santa and the Disney characters. 

 

Edinburgh 

Even though it’s slightly cooler up north, Edinburgh is a stunning place to enjoy a Christmas getaway. Visit here and you’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to family hotels and accommodation. 

Got infants as well as older kids? Then the city is perfect. As part of the spectacular Christmas markets, there are rides for children to enjoy and situated in the lower half of East Princes Street Gardens is Santa Land! Here, let your little ones be dazzled by the decorations and Christmas Tree Maze and let them ride on the Santa Train. 

 

Cornwall 

A UK break is always a safe bet when looking for child-friendly destinations, as this cuts down your travelling times — beneficial if your little one is fussy or easily aggravated. So, how about Cornwall? The Cornish coast in south-west England is one of the country’s most beautiful, peaceful and exciting spots.

There is a choice of relatively-secluded cottages available to book in Cornwall, which is ideal for young families that have crying babies or playful and loud toddlers! Try to go for accommodation that offers you and your family space but is still within walking distance to activities to keep children entertained. At Christmas time, you can see Cornwall’s Christmas lights which children would enjoy, as the streets are illuminated with colour. Down by the harbour offers the perfect view. 

As well as secluded cottages, there is also the Santa by Steam train, where children and adults can go on a journey with the railway elves to visit Santa’s grotto. Under 1s ride free and the journey only lasts an hour — not too long for fidgety little ones! 

 

Top travel tips 

Even simple things like getting to and from the car can be a challenge when you have a baby or toddler in tow. So, what can you do to make travelling on holiday less of an ordeal? Here are a few tips: 

  • Give yourself plenty of time: if you’re late, you’ll stress yourself out and a fussy child will only add to the anxiety. So, start your holiday on a positive note by setting off early. 
  • Have plenty of toys on hand: from the car ride to the airport to the plane journey itself, make sure you pack your child’s essentials — toys and games. Preferably, opt for quiet games that are best suited for public transport. 
  • Think luggage: packing all the essentials for a baby or toddler can add a lot of extra weight to your luggage, so cut down where you can by opting for a lightweight buggy and travel-sized toys and sanitary products. 
  • Check your booking: make sure you verify that the hotel is child-friendly with plenty of amenities for kids.
  • Comforts: don’t forget the little things that soothe your baby, like their favourite soft toy, blanket or even type of food. They may just help calm them down during long car rides. 
  • Be careful with baby food and milk: you can carry baby milk and baby food through airport security in containers over 100ml, so make sure you prepare this before setting off. 
  • Check in online: minimise the airport hassle by checking in over your laptop or phone prior to your day of travel. 
  • Discuss the journey: if this is the first time your child is taking a long-distance journey, make the event seem positive and exciting by chatting them through what will happen — this may make them less apprehensive, especially if you’re flying. 

By following these tips, you’ll be able to take that family holiday you’ve always wanted to go on this year! Bear the above tips in mind to help make the journey just as good as the destination, too. 

 

Disclaimer: this is a collaborative post