Aer Lingus not very A List!

Standard

We are back from holidays just over a week and for the first time since we had kids we flew with Aer Lingus. They were good times, we thought with 2 in tow that the service might be better for families {although we had never had issue with Ryanair} and I think when we booked it might have been slightly cheaper than Ryanair. We were wrong on the special service that’s for sure-very wrong! 
First off you can only check in within 30 hours of your flight that means you have to have access to a computer/printer close to your departure date which wouldn’t be great if you were flying over a weekend and your only choice was work facilities.

Then for us, we arrived at the airport under a ‘pooled’ bag system. Not knowing what that meant exactly we went to the Aer Lingus area. We had a buggy with baby, a toddler, 1 large case & 3 small cases. One of the assistants told us we had to check the large bag in separately to the other bags that we were allowed check on for free. This seemed a bit ridiculous as we had to check in the buggy anyway but we went over to do it. We were 1kg over and he stood over my husband demanding we pay 10 euro as I stood nearby with a crying baby and a tired toddler who we had woken at 4am-this was now 5.30. We started opening our cases trying to shift stuff which was ridiculous when you think about it as they were going to take 4 cases in total on for us but we did.. Eventually when I said the baby aka Max needed to be fed they ushered us to the check in desk to check all bags on with no further comment but not before the ‘helpful man’ said that they should note we were overweight!!! 
Anyway bags were on.. 

Next challenge was terminal 2 which is no where near as family friendly as terminal one. No fast track and up and down lifts. I know this is not essentially an Aer Lingus problem but anything that makes your life easier travelling with kids is a winner in my eyes. They didn’t even have a lift directly at the boarding gate so we needed to be escorted. We were then 45 minutes delayed on the tarmac-I know this can happen but another little grievance to add to the growing list. 
When we arrived at Faro all our bags and buggy arrived fine but there was a huge backlog at passport control. We would have been there hours but luckily the Portuguese authorities had the sense to bring families through first as it moved relatively quickly after that. 
The check in issue rose again on our return journey but luckily our resort office printed the boarding passes for us but this might not always be the case for people and at Faro airport I only saw bag drop. A bag drop to me is a fast experience but each person going up to the desk was taking over 10 minutes to process and then we noted our return flight was going to be delayed again. Once our bags were put through we didn’t mind too much being in holiday mode and headed for a coffee and cake. 
Faro airport is undergoing a refurb and it’s going to be great when it’s finished and they are always pretty mindful of travelling families from what we have experienced.
We thought this was the case when we got to the gate and were brought through as a priority with other families but the final nail in the coffin was being put on a packed hot bus and then being made wait for over 20 minutes to be brought to the plane with hot and restless children. 
The staff on the flight were pleasant and the plane relatively clean but this is the same with Ryanair we have always found so Ryanair might get bad press but they are a winner for us. 
And it didn’t end there.. when we arrived in Dublin our buggies were available to us up several flights of stairs. This is where the most ridiculous part happens-they were brought up in a small lift which was the only lift available so you then had to wait wit 20 other sets of parents for all the buggies then wait again to try get into the tiny lift to head up to baggage reclaim. On a side note the top of our buggy was also broken off but was fixable thankfully. 
I don’t complain often and maybe my expectations of Aer Lingus was too high but it’s Ryanair for me Iin future. They have quick turnarounds, travel via family friendly terminal 1 and also accept hand luggage when travelling with families and allow check in altogether so it’s unlikely we will be choosing Aer Lingus again to be honest and even the price would not sway me in the future! I have sent them a note on the above points so will see what they come back with… One week later and I’m still waiting! 
*needed after an un family friendly flying experience!

Bored of Blogging 

Standard

Not quite what is seems… I’m not bored of blogging albeit my time is more limited to write content these days. 

However it would seem the world is… From what I can see there is a huge social media focus at the moment and while my likes go up, my readership is going down. 

I’m certainly not going to stop blogging, I enjoy it and have always done it partially as a diary too for the boys but my posts will be more sporadic, or even more so than they are now! 

I work with several brands now and the content is stronger on social media platforms too so for now this is where my focus will lie. Showing a little of our lives, sharing some tips and observations too. 

Now is as good as time as ever to step away for a bit as we are heading away on Friday for almost two weeks so happy hols for the Felton’s and for Mummy Moments too! 


Keep following us on Instagram with our stories too, Facebook & Twitter

Feeding Tops & Tips

Standard

I feed Max myself and at 6 months there are no signs of him stopping. Breastfeeding has worked for me and I am thankful for that. However your choice of attire changes somewhat when you have to have quick access to the boob 24/7.

It’s not so bad at the beginning, when losing the baby weight and tops are big but as the months roll on and you want to get your style back it can be tricky to find nice pieces to fit into your wardrobe and not make you look to ‘mumsy’. 

3 bits of essential kit I’d suggest before hunting for tops that work are:

1. Really good feeding bras-get measured and buy well!

2. Clip down vests-really handy for going under things, I get mine in H&M

3. Breast pads-if needed, those tops won’t be as lovely if you have leaked all over them! 
So here is some of what I picked up in recent weeks… It is to give you some ideas.

 I did the bulk of my purchases in Zara but find H&M, Pull & Bear and of course Penny’s good too. It means you don’t spend too much but get to freshen up your wardrobe too for this feeing period in your life. 
I have also included some other pics of bits I’ve seen in the shops and some current stock for handy tops that are in store now so if you are at the start of your journey or in the middle I hope some of these ideas inspire and happy shopping! * all tops below were under 20 euro. 

My Style:


Spotted Out & About…


Some current stock-in Zara!



6 months of Max

Standard

6 months, that’s half a year. Gone in the blink of an eye. It’s gone so fast and yet when I look back on those early days with our new baby boy they seem a lifetime ago. 


I could not have imagined how much this little boy would enrich our lives, add to our family and take his rightful place so firmly in just a few short months.

The minute he shot out at 7.14am on 19th October last,  our bond was instant. I fell deeply in love with this little guy and my understanding of love as a mother became clearer. 

Seeing him come home and become part of our little family has been utterly magical. Within a few short weeks Josh had settled into the role of big brother and what an amazing big brother he is. His love, care and interaction with Max makes me so proud of my precious first born as he grows from a toddler into a little boy. 

Of course there are days where the exhaustion takes hold, he’s a regular waker at night still and both boys early risers. There are periods of time where you feel you barely touch base with your other half..this with 2 kids is the biggest change in our family dynamic I’ve noticed-zero quality time with my husband and sometimes I desperately miss ‘us’. However there will be moments, usually the simplest of things that make us realise how wonderful our existence really is. The time is going so fast and I want to make sure I try and enjoy every part. This can be more difficult some days but 6 months is a real marker and we have lots to look forward to.

The day will return that we get a little more sleep, a lot more adult conversation but the days will pass that he reaches out for me with his chubby hands or giggles at Dad like he is his hero so at night when we get into bed we try and remember this and know how truly lucky we really are. 

Here’s to the next 6 months baby boy and all it’s adventures but don’t go too fast as I see my baby changing before my eyes every day and that both makes me proud and sad too! I love you so much my little smiler and happy six months in this mad world of ours…

Weekly Activities Take 2

Standard

We started Josh with football, rugby and swimming just after he was 2. He enjoyed them but his concentration was a bit erratic and he needed to warm up a bit for some of the activities. He found them fun them for sure and we liked getting out at the weekends with him to start off the day with an activity but looking back now I’m not sure he was fully ready for them. 

We signed back up recently to both football and swimming and I noticed a considerable increase in interest and engagement with both activities as well as ability.

Football is something for fun, it does teach them structure etc but he learns that in school and again he enjoyed it, was much more able for the tasks given but I think a 6 week stretch is probably enough for this before you change it up. I’d definitely go back at some point but it’s also nice to try other things.


Swimming on the other hand I feel is one of life’s skills. This time he was a lot more into it and followed instruction much better. Subtly this class teaches them safety in the water which is why we signed him up pre holiday the first time. This course however gave him more skill in the water and you can now see him taking steps towards solo swimming. At the moment Ian gets in with him but on the next course, which we hope to do Josh will be getting in wort arm bands and we will be his sideline cheerleaders! 

I’d like to go back to Rugby Tots now and give that a try, maybe look at music or even drama when he’s a little older. If the opportunity is there I think it’s great to try it all and see what emerges as their favourite. My only bit of advise is probably wait until closer to 3 to start as both you and they will get more out of it! 

This Weird World

Standard

In recent weeks we’ve heard of Tuam.. The 8th Amendment and not forgetting Trump across the water then just yesterday London was targeted. Adding to that is life, the list goes on and you read these tragic, worrying headlines on a daily basis. This is the high line stuff. Sometimes I just think the world has gone mad. Below the line there is the daily grind for people. Working hard, seeing nothing for it. Money by no means brings happiness but unfortunately it does make the world go around and can make things a little easier too… 

I was feeling a bit sorry for myself the last week or so. However after a suitably lovely Paddy’s  weekend I am over my internal strop. I adore the main components in my life but the daily grind was getting me down. My state maternity benefit is about to come to an end which seems all too soon. This will no doubt put extra pressure on our family but it’s a decision we have made for me to extend my leave for a number of reasons so it’s time to tighten the belts even tighter!

We are blessed with what we do have and make the best of it but it gets very frustrating when you are both working, albeit I work part time but my job wouldn’t even cover full time childcare and you can’t secure a family home for your kids while you pay astronomical rent. 

We have made some minor financial bad decisions along the way but we have no family financial support in any regard so we have always had to fend for ourselves in every regard on both sides so have found it hard to save and what we did have has gone due to redundancies, babies etc.

And it’s not just us..amoungst my peer group no matter what their working set up it seems everyone is struggling financially in different ways. 

We, both myself and my husband want simple things for our family but security for the boys comes top of the list so something is going to have to change in the next few years for that to happen.. Right now we are just figuring out what!