22 March 2015

Cosatto Ooba 3-in-1 Travel System


I am a huge Cosatto fan, have been ever since I came across the brand a few years ago when I needed a smaller pram from Charlie. Something lightweight but not as small as a stroller. I fell head over heels for the Cosatto Yo! in the Ahoy There design. I loved how their eye catching designs and patterns made their products stand out from the crowd. They were so exciting and fresh and I loved pushing my Yo! around, having people come up to me in the street just to admire it. 

Then, a couple of month back, I blogged about how we had joined the Cosatto Brand Buddy Team (eek!) and as part of this, had received the gorgeous Cosatto Ooba 3-in-1 travel system to put through it's paces. All we needed was for Joseph to arrive and we could get to work.

Well now that time has come. We have been using the Cosatto Ooba rigorously since his birth and I have fallen deeply in love with it!

The Cosatto Ooba is at the top of the market when it comes to luxury pushchairs, and being a Cosatto, it means that it comes with everything you need and all the extras such as a coordinating changing bag and footmuff and even raincovers for the car seat, carrycot and seat unit too. 


The Chassis
Made from lightweight aluminium, the chassis has a leatherette handle with adjustable height (99 – 108cm) which is perfect for us as not only can it adjust high enough for my husband (6ft 1") to push, but it even goes low enough that Thomas can too. 
The flip-over handlebar means no need to remove the seat unit to change direction which is a great idea although personally, the pram looks a little odd when you're pushing it with the big wheels at the front. 

It has quick-release removable wheels with the front ones being lockable swivel wheels. Perfect for long walks as, on rough terrain, you can lock them to stop them from spinning over bumps and then put the swivel back on for easier pushing on flat ground. and when it rains and mud gets over the wheels, they come off easily to be cleaned. 


The Carrycot
I love that the carrycot is high up on the Ooba as with other pushchairs I have seen, they always seem much lower down which would be a pain when you're having to bend over to check on your baby. The Ooba doesn't have this problem though and because it can be parent facing too, it means that it is easy to keep an eye on Joseph as we wheel around.

It has a comfy lie flat bed which is perfect for newborn and the mattress gives comfort whilst on the move. Easy to attach and remove from the chassis and even has a carry handle built into hood to make it even easier. 


The Seat Unit
With Joseph still being so young, I haven't been able to use the seat unit yet as it is suitable from 6 months to approximately 15kg. It has multi-position recline on the backrest and adjustable calf support for extra comfort, coming complete with a cosytoes with zip off reversible liner
As with all Cosatto prams, it has a 5 point safety harness for extra safety when travelling and a 50+ UPF sunshade protection hood to keep those rays at bay. 


The Hold Car Seat and Base
The Cosatto Ooba has a matching Duck Egg Hold car seat (sold separately) which I featured in my birth story as this was Joseph's transport home from hospital. You can have a nosy at my birth story post if you fancy a read. 

The Hold car seat is a group 0+ and is suitable from birth to around 13kg. It has a 5 point safety harness with a quick release buckle and because it fits directly onto the pram chassis, it means that you can transport baby from the car to where ever you need to go without waking him. 

With the Hold Universal Base it makes the transition even easier. no having to mess with seatbelts when you're getting the car seat in and out of the car. The Cosatto Hold base fastens into your car with the seatbelt, this is super easy to install too. Once in place you can keep it in-situ and simply place the Hold car seat on and off it when you’re out and about with extra ease. 

Pram and Seat Positions
Just to give you an idea of all the options, I have created this short Flipagram to show you all the positions the pram can go in to...


Basket Love
The shopping basket is a decent size. Because the pram has such a big base, this also gives extra room in the basket area which I am really impressed with. I love that it's really deep too, as when using other prams, I always used to have to chase shopping when I went over curbs and the groceries took a dive for freedom. 

The Brakes
It took a while to get used to the brake as it is on the side of the pram handle instead of at the base near the back wheels. You need to press the lever on the frame to put the brake on which I didn't like the thought of at first but actually, after using the pram many times (even on the bus a few times) I can safely say that I now prefer it this way. No more having to try searching with my foot to find the brake, or having to move my bag out of the way so that I can see what I'm doing, just a quick click on the frame and it's on.  


The Niggles
After much use over these past few weeks, I was expecting to have a huge list of things that I didn't like about it. After all, I am a pushchair lover and know what I like and what I don't, but actually I was pleasantly surprised as there isn't much to moan about at all.

First up is the price. well, not really the price of the pram itself. Yes, £800 is a lot of money, but with the price of prams these days, and the fact that these have been put through their paces immensely to ensure the safety of our babies, I could justify spending this much on a pram. My problem is the extras. When you say 'travel system' you would expect that the car seat came in the package but it doesn't so of course, when you're sorting out your pram budget, you need to take in to account that if you need a car seat, this would need to be purchased separately. 

Lastly, the wheels. I love the wheels. They are big, they are chunky and they are robust. But, they are white. Yes, they look amazing on the pram, they match the design perfectly, but after a short walk on a rainy park, they are covered in mud. I know that this isn't really much of a problem in the pram stakes, but when you paying all that money for a pram that stands out from the crowd with its design, I think that the wheels could have been thought about a little more. Although I do like that they can be removed so can be easily washed. 


Overall Thoughts
Overall, I can honestly say that I love the Cosatto Ooba 3-in-1 travel system. I love the design, the size of the basket, the quality of the materials and how it stands out from all other prams on the market. Yes, there are a few niggles with it, but you get them with all prams and luckily, none of them are big issues that would put me off buying it.

It is funky and fresh with great designs and practical features. The huge wheels mean that it can go over any ground with ease. The different seat units give scope for the future as the baby will grow through the seats, going from the carrycot and car seat to the seat unit itself which is long and wide enough so will last for even the biggest child.

I love the leatherette handle which gives comfort whilst pushing it and the brake on the handle makes it super easy to put on and off. Putting it up and down is a little bit of a fuss as you have to take the seat unit off but to be honest, I'm not planning on putting it down much so this doesn't affect me.

I really am glad that I have been given this chance of working with Cosatto and reviewing the Cosatto Ooba 3-in-1 Travel System as I have fallen head over heels in love with it and I adore getting to go out and push Joseph about in the pram.

Now just to plan my next adventure using the Ooba!

21 March 2015

Family Love - Our Family of 5!

The boys have always been close to each other. Yeah, they have their moments when they argue and fight, but most of the time they are loving and kind to each other.

Since Joseph has been born, they have been even more loving, not only to Joseph but even more to each other. 

Charlie has been going through the jealous stage and has been getting upset with the fact that he is no longer the littlest one. Not able to cuddle mummy as much as he used to or climb on my knee all the time as now Joseph is here and needs a lot of my attention. 

But since Charlie is going through this jealousy stage, Thomas has taken him under his wing and makes sure that if I'm busy with the baby, that he will keep him occupied and give him extra cuddles and snuggles. 


It's been great to see them bonding together more and lovely to see how they're reacted to the new addition to our family. 

I was worried that they would hate having a little baby in the house. It's not only hard for mummy and daddy having a new baby to look after but children get effected too with how much the whole household changes. Babies take up a lot of time, feeding every 3 hours, winding, nappy changes, by the time you've done and got the baby to sleep, it's nearly time to start again and so, in between feeds, there isn't much time. 

I think what has been luckily for us though is the fact that my husband works early shifts and finishes before Thomas comes out of school, this means that we then have the whole rest of the day to get stuff done. And since both us parents are there, we can tackle doing stuff with the boys and looking after Joseph easier. 

Since he's been born I think we've actually done more baking then normal as it gives us something to bond over, something to do, you get a great reward at the end of it and it's just a great thing for boys to learn about. I want them to grow up knowing how to cook and bake. 


I'm not gunna lie, it has been hard work trying to keep on top of things since we became a family of 5, but by working together, helping each other and concentrating on our family, it has been a great ride so far. 

I can't wait for the boys to grow up together and get to know their little brother as he grows up with them. Seeing the look on Joseph's face when he spots Thomas or Charlie across the room, his whole face lights up, he stares at them in adoration and Thomas was actually the first one to get a smile from him. Our own perfect family. 

17 March 2015

Chocolate Brownie Buns Recipe

As you all probably know by now, I am a lover of chocolate. I am, as some may say, a chocoholic. When I was pregnant this time round, I couldn't eat chocolate at all, it made me feel so ill and that was by far the worst thing to do with my pregnancy, not been able to eat chocolate.

So now that Joseph is here, I am making the most of the fact that I can now eat it again and have been taking every opportunity to devour it. That's when I came up with the chocolate brownie buns. Similar to brownie slice, but made into buns instead so there is none of the faffing trying to get them out of the tin afterwards. 

To make my Chocolate Brownie Buns, you will need:

Ingredients
250g bar of chocolate
85g of butter
140g plain flower
2 eggs
200g sugar

Method
1. Preheat the oven to 180c.
2. Line a muffin tin with bun cases.
3. Melt 200g of the chocolate in a saucepan with the butter, heating gently and stirring constantly.
4. Whisk the eggs and sugar together and then slowly add the flour into the mix, a bit at a time. 
5. Stir in the melted chocolate.
6. Finally, use the 50g of chocolate leftover and break in to chunks, add this to the mix and stir well.
7. Spoon the mixture into the bun cases and bake for around 30 minutes.
8. Leave to cool and then enjoy.

And that is it! Super simple to make and so yummy to eat.

You can then of course mix it up a bit. Use white chocolate for the chunks to add into the mix for an extra bit of flavour. Maybe even add in some nuts. Hazelnuts, almonds or even walnuts would work well in this recipe. I've even tried it with Nutella instead of chocolate and that works well too and gives you the nutty flavour without the chunks. 

Whether you decide to follow my recipe to the 't' or add in a few extras to make them extra special, make sure you enjoy them. And send me a cheeky photo on Twitter if you do bake them, I'd love to see your bakes @Yorkshire_Mummy

15 March 2015

Our Week In Pictures

I haven't done a weekly update post in a while, pregnancy and a newborn took their toll and I just wasn't well enough or didn't have time. Now that we are all sorted and in a routine, I thought I'd better get back to my weekly updates of what we've been doing, showing you this is photos. 


First up, we went to the park a couple of times this week. I love the fact that it is only round the corner from us so, when the weather is nice, we can just pop there all the time for the kids to play and the wear them out too. 

Taking their Micro Scooters up with them, they enjoyed the slide and fireman's pole and also just getting some fresh air outdoors. It's great to be able to do this again now the weather is a bit better. It was the first time Joseph got to visit the park too. He wasn't really impressed with all the kids shouting but did like being out in the sunshine. 


I'm obsessed with baby clothing. There is so much out there to choose from and I'm a lover of big prints such as on this all-in-one that I bought from Boots. As you can see from Joseph's face, he isn't very happy at all. He has had a cold this week so has been very grumpy. Hopefully it'll go soon though.

Then, on Friday it was time for a bit of relaxation for me. I had won a voucher for Sassoon Salon back at Christmas but had been too ill to go in, so used the voucher this week instead. The prize was a colour, cut and treatment which cost a small fortune, but luckily I didn't have to pay. 


It was an amazing day. The stylists were lovely and went through everything with me. What I wanted and their advice. I knew that I wanted quite a bit cut off and then they got to work. I had highlights put in and then it coloured in between the highlights. I then had a treatment put on to protect the colour and then it was time for it cutting. I absolutely love the end result. What do you think? 

So we end on Mother's Day. I got some lovely bits from the kids and my hubby, my favourite chocolates (Guylain of course) and handmade cards. We then had a yummy chicken roast dinner and settled down to do a bit of drawing. 

I showed Thomas what I used to do when I was a kid. Did you ever do this?

8 March 2015

Our 3 Boys - One Month On

Today, the 8th March, marks one month since I gave birth to Joseph. You can read the birth story here about how quick my labour went and that I was in and out of hospital quicker than I thought I would be.

4 weeks! how can it be 4 weeks already. Time has just flown by. So I thought I'd do a quick update to tell you how we've been getting on over the past month as a family of 5.

I was a little worried about hos the boys would react to having another brother in the household. Charlie is a mummy's boy and I thought that he would hate the fact that I would now have someone else that would be taking my time up too. But no, both Thomas and Charlie have taken it very well and even try to help out with everything. 


Thomas and Charlie are both loving being big brothers to Joseph. Thomas, constantly asking to hold him, feed him, help in any way, and Charlie just loves to cuddle and kiss him, although I think Joseph is starting to tire of being prodded and touched all the time. 

Joseph himself is thriving. Putting weight on and growing well, loving his milk too. I get to see him grow as a little boy everyday. Watching him as he notices the world around him, getting mesmerised by glimmers of light or sounds that he's not heard before.

Seeing his brothers get home from school and he just watches them, wondering where they have been all day, just staring at his big brothers, those same brothers that sat on my knee chatting to my bump whilst he was tucked up inside me. You can see his eyes light up when he hears the boys voices, knowing that he recognises them.


I made this Flipagram to show just how much Joseph has changed and grown over the past month. It's amazing how quickly baby's change, some days looking like me, other days, like his daddy or even his brothers, I love looking back and noticing those little things about him. 

I can't wait to see how the boys develop together over the next few months, to see how Joseph grows and starts to get more active, waking for longer and starting to play. I just can't wait!

3 March 2015

Pelvic Floor Muscles - What They Are and How Pregnancy Affects Them

Everyone has an idea of what happens in labour. You know, pains, ouch, ouch, ouch, a lot of pushing and then a baby appears into the world. But no one tells you just what it's like afterwards. I don't mean how to cope with a baby, but just how much your bits downstairs are affected. 

You can't have a baby pushing down on your bits for 9 months and then push him out of said bits without it changing somewhat. And what part is most affected? Your Pelvic Floor muscles.

What are your pelvic floor muscles?
The pelvic floor muscles hold your pelvic organs, the uterus, vagina, bowel and bladder, in place. They support the bladder and bowel, and give you control when you urinate. Located between your legs, they run from your pubic bone at the front to the base of your spine at the back and, as you get older, your pelvic floor muscles get weaker.


Pregnancy also has a big effect on your pelvic floor muscles. As I said above, for the whole 9 month of pregnancy, the baby, amniotic fluid, placenta, everything, is resting on top of the pelvic floor muscles with great pressure, causing them to stretch and become weaker too. 

Weakened pelvic muscles can cause problems such as urinary incontinence and reduced sensitivity during sex so making sure you do pelvis floor exercises is essential to keep them toned and to strengthen them too. 

How to do pelvic floor exercises
To be able to locate your pelvic floor muscles, simply imagine that you are urinating and then try to stop it mid stream. You feel that tensing? well that is your pelvic floor muscles. 

To strengthen your pelvic floor muscles, you have to squeeze said muscles in and hold it there for about 10 seconds before letting go and doing it again (do not hold your breath or tighten your stomach whilst doing these). Repeat this about 10 times. It is advised that you do this a few times a day. 

The joys of children
Now, having children may be one of the best things I have ever done, but my pelvic floor muscles don;t thank me for this. You see, when I had Thomas I was a bit naive about the whole, having to do exercises part, and didn't take them seriously at all. Now I've just had my third child I am suffering because of this and need to get it sorted.

My husband is going for the big snip in a few months as we have decided that 3 is our magic number and we'll be having no more children so now is the time for me to focus on getting my feminine health back up to scratch and to make sure that my pelvic floor muscles are strengthened. 


The Elise Pelvic Floor Exerciser
The Elise Pelvic Floor Exerciser is an easy-to-use, flexible pelvic floor exerciser with a range of clinically tested programs, providing relief from stress, urged and mixed incontinence as well as improving sexual well-being. 

It has just been awarded the ECRM Award for Most Innovative Product 2015 which TensCare Ltd are very proud of and, I, well I will be putting this to the test over the next few months to see how it can improve my pelvic floor muscles and hopefully tone and strengthen them.

The Elise works by sending a gentle stimulation to your pelvic floor through a vaginal probe working your pelvic floor muscle for you, gently strengthening and toning your pelvic floor muscle which in-turn improves the symptoms of incontinence. To get full benefit from it, it is to be used every day with eash session lasting for 20 minutes. Many people will see improvements within as little as 3-4 weeks but the Elise should be used for a period of 12 weeks. 

The Elise has a One Touch Memory which remembers the last program, strength and settings used and will turn off after 20 minutes to ensure the pelvic floor muscle is not overworked and I cannot wait to start using it to see how it works for me.

For more information about TensCare and The Elise Pelvic Floor Exerciser, pop over to the TensCare website and I'll be back in a couple of months to let you know how the Elise has worked for me, the results and my overall thoughts.