5 things that helped my toddler to sleep better

5 things that helped my toddler to sleep better

It was only a month ago that I wrote a blog post about how I was considering hiring a sleep trainer for E. I was at my wit’s end. She was waking up almost hourly, breastfeeding like a newborn and refusing to go back to sleep. Instead, she would throw herself around our bed, like a fish out of water, screaming her head off. Quite frankly, I’m surprised our neighbours haven’t yet called the police because anybody would think a murder was being committed in our house.

But I am pleased to report that things have changed dramatically over the last few weeks and we’re all getting considerably more sleep. I feel happier and brighter and able to parent better. And as for E, she is like a different child. She’s well rested and happier too.

So what changed?

1. We stopped co-sleeping.

E slept in our bed and had done pretty much since birth. She woke for feeds throughout the night and I just found it easier to have her in our bed for that reason. But even the little sleep I did get was rubbish because I had so little space, usually finding myself squeezed in-between a bed-hogging toddler and my 6ft something husband. (We had a bed guard on the side of the bed that E slept so she didn’t fall out.)

Putting E in her own room was the only thing we hadn’t tried and after several nights of having barely any sleep, I lost my sh*t and dragged E’s (at the time, unused) cot into the office (she’ll share a room with J eventually). That night, I stayed next to her cot until she fell asleep… and the next night and the night after that. There were tears from E (I never left her to cry, that’s not my style) and I was sad too, I missed her snuggles but after the third night, she got it. I can now feed her, put her down in her cot and she will wave at me and blow me a kiss as I leave the room. I genuinely can’t believe it.

2. We cut down nighttime breastfeeds.

Once E was in a separate room, she straight away began waking less often for night feeds. I guess not sleeping in a bed with my breasts inches from her face meant it was rather less convenient for her to wake up and have a sup on mama’s milk, so she stopped bothering (as much). I now feed E just before bed and again at around 10.30 but other than that one feed in the night, she sleeps through! I am planning to wean E completely later this month but that’s a blog post for another time. Watch this space!

3. We incorporated a nightlight into our bedtime routine.

On hearing all about my sleep woes, the folks at Lumie very kindly offered to send me a Bedbug Light Sleep Aid. “It won’t be the entire solution, of course – but it might help?” I had nothing to lose so decided we’d give it a go.

The Bedbug (which is endorsed by gentle-parenting expert Sarah Ockwell-Smith) offers fully adjustable bedside lighting to change, feed and settle your child ready for bed. I use the gradual sunset mode when putting E to bed, it takes about 15 minutes for the room to go from being brightly lit to dark. This is enough time for me to feed E and place her in her cot and exit the room whilst she finishes settling herself to sleep. If I need to pop in at any point during the night to feed or comfort her, I can turn on Bedbug’s orange nightime glow. This gives me enough light to see what I’m doing but doesn’t trigger wakefulness.

I really do believe it’s been instrumental in setting up a good bedtime routine with E and now we wouldn’t be without our Bedbug. In fact, I think I’m going to have to get one for J as she sleeps with her main light on because she’s scared of the dark!

4. We re-introduced white noise.

I bought Ewan the Dream Sheep when I was pregnant with E. We never bothered with any kind of white noise comforters when J was a baby but I’d heard good things about Ewan and so he ended up being one of only a handful ‘second baby purchases’ (everything else we’d kept from J). We used Ewan a fair bit when E was a newborn and he was relatively effective, but his batteries ran out and he ended up being forgotten about, hidden in a basket full of other soft toys.

But after moving E into the new room, I’d get her settled and asleep in her cot each night and as I’d go to walk out of the door, the floorboards would squeak and I’d be rumbled! I bought some new batteries for Ewan and started using him alongside the nightlight when settling E in her cot, the white noise seemed to help send her off to sleep quicker and if nothing else, it certainly helped to mask the noise of my steps across the creaky floorboards!

5. We started using Gro sleeping bags.

Gro bags aren’t new to us, we used them when J was a baby and they were fantastic. But because E shared our bed, I was reluctant to put her in any more layers other than her PJs and a cellular blanket, in case she overheated. Being the wriggly worm that she is, she’d often end up kicking her blanket off in the night and then waking up cold. As soon as we put her in the cot, we dug out the old Gro sleep bags and now we know she’s snuggly and warm all night long. One less reason for her to wake up at night! ;)

I don’t think that any one of these things would’ve made such a big difference on it’s own but the combination of all 5 has certainly helped us to get E into a better nighttime routine. We still haven’t mastered daytime naps (but you can’t have it all, right?), but for now, I am very pleased to be getting a lot more sleep. Fingers crossed, it continues…

Our bedtime faves*: 

Jenna xx

Related posts that you may also like to read:

Is it time to bring in a sleep trainer?
Bedtime Routines: The first baby vs. the second baby
10 things nobody told me about breastfeeding
A co-sleeping dilemma

 

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Celebrating World Book Day with Tidy Books®
(and sharing some of our favourite reads)

Celebrating World Book Day with Tidy Books® <br>(and sharing some of our favourite reads)<br/>

It’s World Book Day today and Jasmine has bounced into pre-school dressed as Lily Bobtail looking utterly adorable (and a little too grown up for my liking!) She loves the Peter Rabbit books and TV show so I wasn’t remotely surprised when she asked to be Lily for WBD.

Over the last few years, Jasmine has acquired a large amount of children’s books and until recently they were stored inside a disintegrating cardboard box. It wasn’t the home that those well-loved books deserved so we were super thankful when Kiddies Kingdom got in touch with us to see if we would like to review the Tidy Books box.

The Tidy Books box is beautifully crafted with the Montessori learning style in mind. The low level design of the storage box allows children to take out their books independently (and in theory, put them back away again after!) ;)

We’ve been using the Tidy Books Box for about a month now and here’s my thoughts on it:

What we love about the Tidy Books Box:

✶ It was easy to assemble (it comes flat-packed but took me a mere 10 minutes to put together).

✶ The clock face is a great addition.  It’s a handy little tool for helping to teach Jasmine about time – which is something she seems fascinated with at the moment.

✶ It can store up to 40 books of all shapes and sizes.

✶ Jasmine enjoys being able to select her bedtime stories herself from the book box.

✶ The white (water-lacquer) finish means the book box fits in well with the rest of the furniture and decor in Jasmine’s bedroom. The book box is also available with a ‘natural wood finish’.

Elowen proving you’re never too young to enjoy a book!

What we weren’t so keen on:

✶ The box is designed to be ‘portable’ and has a handle at the top of it but I found, once the books were inside it, the box was a bit too big and bulky to carry around. I don’t intend to move it around the house so it’s not a huge issue.

✶ The Tidy Books Box is rather large (H35cm  x W55cm x D31cm) and therefore takes up a lot of floor space (as opposed to a traditional bookcase/shelf).

And that’s honestly the only faults I can find – we love our book box!

Do check out the Tidy Books box as well lots of other gorgeous children’s room decor and nursery furniture sets from Kiddies Kingdom.

Whilst we’re on the subject of books, I couldn’t not share some of our current faves:

1. Alan’s Big, Scary Teeth by Jarvis

Jasmine received this book in her 3-4 years Bookstart pack some months ago and it’s been a firm favourite ever since. Alan the alligator loves scaring the other jungle animals using his fearsome set of gnashers. Unfortunately for Alan, Barry the beaver discovers that those ‘fearsome gnashers’ are in fact, a set of false teeth. After that, poor Alan becomes a laughing stock! This book is a “goofy comedy of self-discovery, witty, warm-hearted storytelling and bright graphic art will make this (and Alan!) a firm children’s book favourite.” We highly recommended it!

2. The Bumblebear by Nadia Shireen

We currently have this book on loan from the library and I’ve had to renew it several times. I’m now on the lookout for a secondhand copy that we can keep! Norman, like most bears, loves honey. But getting honey is a litttle bit tricky if you’re a bear so Norman cleverly disguises himself as a bee! Norman attends ‘Bee School’ and, it turns out, is a very convincing bee. Despite that, it’s not long until his true identity is discovered and Norman is kicked out of bee school. How will he ever be able to redeem himself?! You’ll have to read it yourself to find out! ;)

3. When’s my birthday? By Julie Fogliano and Christian Robinson

We were lucky enough to be sent this book to review and it’s clearly a hit with my three-year-old as Jasmine asks for it to be read to her every. single. night. The book’s pages are beautifully illustrated and the dialogue perfectly reflects that of an excited child who is approaching their birthday (Jasmine turns 4 in early April so we’re allll about birthday chat at the moment).

Has your little one dressed up for World Book Day?

Jenna xx

I was sent the Tidy Books Box for the purpose of this review but all opinions are my own. :)

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Diono Quantum Travel System Review

Around about this time last year, I had an (almost cooked) bambino growing inside of me and I was frantically searching for the ‘perfect’ travel system in time for their arrival. I had 3 main criteria:

1) it had to cost no more than £500

2) it had to fit in our VW Polo (which doesn’t have a particularly big boot)

3) it had to last. As much as I love buying pushchairs, my husband would not have been impressed if we’d needed to buy a new one as soon as baby got a bit bigger. We were looking for a pushchair that would work for a newborn and then eventually an older toddler.

So, they were my main criteria. The necessities. But I also wanted something that looked good, was easy to use and of course, was comfortable and spacious for our bubba!

Is that all too much to ask?

In a word, no.

And, had the Diono Quantum been available when I was searching for the ideal mode of transport for my precious bundle, it would have no doubt been a serious contender.

How do I know this? Well, I was a super lucky lady and the lovely people at Diono sent me the Quantum Travel System to review. I’ve spent the last few months putting the pushchair through it’s paces and I can’t wait to tell you what I think of it!

First up, about Diono…

Diono are perhaps best known for their range of children’s car seats and travel accessories. They’re a company that prides itself on using ‘commonsense’ to make their products. They say that ‘it’s the little ideas that make a big difference and go a long way.’ They are a company focused on making safe, practical and well thought out products. These guys and gals really do think through every little detail!

Diono Quantum – the low down…

Cost: £500 (it would have been the very top end of my budget but… *tick*)

Suitable from birth to 22kg (made to last until well into toddlerhood *tick*)

Available in the following colours: Black, Red, Navy and Teal

Compatible with car seats (adapters are included).

Weight: Chassis – 9.3kg Seat – 5kg

What’s in the box?

Chassis
Convertible seat
Hood
Basket
Raincover
Carriage liner
Mattress
Apron
Seat liner
Bumper bar
Infant car seat adaptors

My first impressions:

Like any good pushchair obsessive I had the box open and contents sprawled out across my floor within seconds of it being delivered! It took me a matter of minutes to put the pushchair together (although I’m clearly well practiced) and I was instantly in love with the style of it. The colour is vibrant and the design is sleek

What we weren’t so keen on:

The chassis of the Quantum is certainly on the heavy side and I wouldn’t really want to carry it much further than the shed (where we keep our buggies) to the car. That said, there is a shoulder strap to use when carrying the chassis when folded which is the first time I’ve seen this on a pushchair. It’s a nice touch and makes life a little easier.

I found the straps/harness a little fiddly to use at first, but once you’ve got the knack for it, it’s not such a problem.

The Quantum is difficult to steer one-handed which is something to bear in mind if you have an older child who’s hand you want to hold or if, like me, you walk your dog when out with the pushchair and need one hand for the lead.

There’s not a lot of ‘bounce’ in the tyres so pushing Quantum up high kerbs is a bit of an issue. I end up having to tilt the pushchair up and over the bump to get it up onto the pavement. No biggie but a little frustrating at times.

It’s bulky. I’d probably avoid going into small shops etc. when out with the Quantum as it is a fair size. But I suppose this is the price you pay to make sure your little one has plenty of space in their carriage!

What we loved:

The large shopping basket is awesome. A decent sized basket is surprisingly hard to come by which is something that really surprised me during my search for the perfect pushchair. Given that I don’t drive, a large shopping basket is something that is quite important to me. It’s also great for carrying the 1,568 pine cones and 486 sticks that my toddler insists we bring home with us every time we go out! ;)

You can easily adjust the pushchair handle. With me being 5ft nothing and my husband 6ft something – this is pretty important to us. It’s great that we can both push the Quantum comfortably with the handlebar adjusted to a height that suits each of us.

The push on/push off foot brake is one of the best I’ve come across – simple, practical and safe. And most importantly, it works! I’ve previously had pushchairs sliding about on buses because the brakes were so pants!

The extendable sun canopy is superb – 4-tiers of SPF50+ sun protection. This is one aspect of the pushchair where I think Diono has really excelled itself!

The ability to have baby world-facing or parent-facing.

The ease in which you can switch from carry cot to toddler seat in the mere click of a few buckles. This also means that you don’t have a separate carry cot and seat which would take up storage space when not in use.

It fits in our car boot! (*tick*)

The colour and style. I was sent the Quantum in Teal to review and it’s gorgeous. It always gets compliments from strangers when we’re out and about. There’s no compromise on design.

Final thoughts on the Diono Quantum Travel System:

If, like I did, you have a budget of around £500 for a travel system then I’d urge you to consider the Quantum. Having looked at so many pushchairs/travel systems in this price range I can honestly say that it is in incredible value for money. The Quantum is a well thought out and equally well designed pushchair with both parents and baby in mind. From the shoulder strap to the extra large sun canopy – you can see where Diono have used ‘little ideas to make a big difference’.

Is it the perfect pushchair? Well, no – it does have a few flaws. (But to be honest, I’m yet to find a pushchair that doesn’t.)

I wish the frame wasn’t quite so heavy and the ability to navigate kerbs was a little easier but on the whole this is a really good travel system. If you’re looking for a travel system that is long lasting, practical and yet still stylish – the Diono Quantum comes up trumps.

I’d love to know what your most important criteria was/is when pushchair shopping?

Jenna xx

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The Diono Quantum was sent to me for the purpose of this review. I will always give my 100% honest opinions when reviewing an item and this is no exception. :)

Theraline Mamma Pads {Review}

Theraline Mamma Pads {Review}

Theraline Mamma Pads Review:

There were a few things that took me by surprise when it came to breastfeeding. In particular, just how messy it could be. My boobs have leaked milk since I was about 22 weeks pregnant and now that I’m a little over 3 months into our breastfeeding journey, it’s still something I have to deal with daily.

In the early days, before my milk supply had regulated (I’m talking the first 8-9 weeks or so postpartum), I would often wake up in a puddle of my own breast milk. I wore a bra and breast pads at night but they’d quickly become saturated and soggy. If I’m honest, after a while it started to get me down. I often thought ‘there must be another way’. I couldn’t believe, in this day and age, this should still be a problem for breastfeeding mamas. As it turns out, there is indeed, another way…

I recently heard about Theraline’s Mamma Pads – ‘smart’ nursing pads that don’t collect leaking breast milk, but instead stop the leakage from happening in the first place. Hallelujah! The slim and discrete silicone pads temporarily shut off your milk ducts by gently pressing in the nipples.

Once the pads are removed the milk ducts open again and your milk can flow normally for the next feed. Mamma Pads will adapt to every breast shape.

These clever little pads sounded far too good to be true so I was very pleased when Theraline kindly offered to send me a pair to review. Here’s what I thought:

What I loved about the Theraline Mamma Pads:

I think it’s great that these pads don’t collect leaking milk, but instead stop your breasts from leaking in the first place. It’s so, so clever. It means I feel cleaner and there’s no milky wet patches on my clothes (which I personally find quite embarrassing when out in public).

They are so easy to put on and once they’re on I didn’t notice them. They don’t crease up or fall out of your bra like regular breast pads do. (You would not believe the amount of times I’ve had to scoop up my regular breast pads off the floor of a coffee shop!)

They’re more discrete than regular breast pads. (This means on those rare occasions that you get to go ‘out, out’ you won’t be limited as to what you can wear!)

Theraline Mamma Pads Review

I don’t have to wear a bra to use them. (Great if, like me, you prefer to sleep without a bra on.)

They’re easy to clean – just rinse them with soapy water and leave to dry.

… And that leads me on to my next point – they’re reusable (for around 150+ uses) so they’re cost efficient and better for the environment. :)

What I wasn’t so keen on:

The fact that they are ‘virtually invisible’ is both a blessing an a curse. After removing one of the pads during the night to feed Elowen, I’d end up losing it somewhere in the bed covers. Being half asleep at 3am and in the dark made it impossible to find it again until the morning. (I had the same problem with nipple shields in the early weeks of breastfeeding.)

The ‘sticky’ adhesive side of the pad often ends up collecting hair and fluff which, whilst it doesn’t affect their use, is quite annoying.

The pads (and ultimately my boobs) end up a little smelly if I’ve worn them all day.

You have to leave them to air dry after washing (by using a towel or similar to dry them you’d end up wiping off the thin layer of adhesive). This means that during that drying time you’d either have to go sans pads (risky), use regular nursing pads or invest in a second set of Mamma Pads. To be fair. at around £15 a set, they’re very good value. I’m planning to buy a second set for myself.

Final thoughts:

These are such clever, little pads and I only wish I had known about them sooner. Whilst they’re not perfect, I certainly prefer them to conventional breast pads for the reasons I’ve listed above. If you’re a pregnant or breastfeeding/expressing mama then I certainly recommend giving these pads a try. Best of all, if you’re not completely happy with them, Theraline will give you a full refund. You’ve nothing to lose! :)

You can buy them here*:

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HelloFresh Family Recipe Box Review

HelloFresh Family Recipe Box Review

I recently had a very exciting e-mail drop into my inbox, asking me if my family and I would like to trial and review HelloFresh boxes for two weeks. For each week of those two weeks a box would be delivered to my home, complete with dinner recipe cards and all the ingredients needed to make the meals. Anyone who is in charge of meal planning and food shopping in their household will understand my excitement – it’s a total grind and a job I was very happy to avoid for a fortnight.

There are 3 types of HelloFresh boxes available – Classic, Veggie and Family. I selected to have the Family boxes as they are tailored to be more ‘child friendly’. Would the meals appeal to my fussy two-year-old? Time would tell!

I was given a choice of 3 days in which my delivery could take place so I chose Thursdays (as we tend to eat more together as a family over the weekends). I was also given the option to leave a note for the courier, such as a place to leave the box in the event that I’m not at home when it arrives.

Both of my boxes arrived just before midday. Each box contained recipe cards and ingredients for four meals. The items in the box are packed with cold packs to keep the chilled items (meat, dairy products etc.) fresh.

The first thing that struck me when I opened the box was just how much was in there. Everything was accounted for, right down to the herbs & spices. Secondly, I was blown away by how good quality everything looked, the meat in particular looked far nicer than our usual supermarket-bought meats. I was also pleased to see the new potatoes were locally sourced from Suffolk! At this point I was really hoping it was all going to taste as good as it looked.

box contents

Pictured above is every item that came in our first HelloFresh box. The only things we had to supply ourselves was cooking oil/spray and water.

The meals included in our first box were the following:

  • Garlicky Courgette Chicken Gratin with Roasted New Potatoes
  • Beef and Chorizo Burgers with Red Onion Marmalade
  • Jamie’s Sausage Gnocchi with Broccoli and Tomato
  • Stir-Fried Chinese Chilli Beef

And here’s what we thought of them…

Meal 1

I think this was possibly my favourite meal overall. The chicken was brilliant quality (although 4 large chicken breasts was probably too much for the 3 of us). I had never thought to roast new potatoes before but they came out lovely and crisp. Spinach isn’t something I tend to eat as I find it a bit boring. However, the Honey and Orange salad dressing that was supplied in the box to dress the spinach was divine so I scoffed the lot! I cooked this meal (Stephen and I took turns) and it took exactly the amount of time the recipe card said (35 mins). This was a tasty, quick and easy meal which I will definitely be making again in the future.

meal 2

We love a good burger in this house so we had high hopes for these Beef and Chorizo burgers. The recipe we was fairly straightforward but I did find it hard to grill the meat as the burgers do fall apart a bit. It also took quite a bit longer to cook the meat than the 4 minutes each side that was instructed on the recipe card. All in all, it was still a quick dinner and very tasty.

meal 3

None of us had ever tried gnocchi before and to be honest we weren’t entirely sure what it was. (FYI gnocchi are small Italian dumplings made from potato, semolina or flour.) I’m a big fan of Jamie Oliver’s recipes so I was still excited to try this meal. There was quite a bit of prep involved with this recipe (mostly chopping veg) and it did take us closer to 40/50 mins to make (recipe card says 30 mins). It was well worth the wait though – this meal was full of flavour and I’m already looking forward to using gnocchi again. Oh an my fussy two-year-old? She was asking for “more, more, more!”

meal 4

I felt this meal was a little faffy for a stir-fry – the ones we usually make at home take a lot less than 30 minutes to make. The beef was brilliant quality but we couldn’t really get it to ‘crisp up’ like it was supposed to have done. It was an OK meal but nothing to write home about. Jasmine also found this recipe a little too spicy.

My final thoughts on our first HelloFresh box: 

I really enjoyed trying out new recipes and eating ingredients I had never eaten before. I looked forward to our evening meals and eating together as a family. Aside from the stir fry – they all went down well with our little lady. Nothing makes me happier than seeing my toddler’s clean plate! I couldn’t wait to see what was going to be in our next box…

second box

The meals from our second box were:

  • Lebanese Lamb Tortillas with Minted Tzatziki and Toasted Almonds
  • Speedy Vietnamese Steak Stir-Fry
  • Pan Fried Pork Medallions with Tarragon and Potatoes
  • Chicken and Romanesco Pasta Bake with Bacon and Courgette

Here’s what we thought of them…

Lamb 2

We had my mother-in-law stay over for the weekend and I decided to make this as a lunch for us all. This meal had quite a lot of prep involved but made a nice midday meal for the 4 of us (3 adults and 1 child) – there was plenty to go round. I didn’t bother with the almonds in this recipe as neither hubby or myself are that keen on them. The mince was lovely although I am used to buying reduced fat/extra lean mince from the supermarket. I feel like an extra side would have been nice with this meal, although I’m not entirely sure what… some couscous perhaps?

pork

This meal was by far the biggest ‘surprise’. My husband pulled a face when I showed him the recipe card. “I won’t like that, I’m not that keen on pork and I hate tarragon”. Oh! Although it’s definitely not the type of meal we’d choose to cook, I was a little more open-minded and was looking forward to trying something a bit different. Despite his initial reaction, hubby offered to cook the meal for us and within in minutes he was was starting to change his mind as the sauce smelled so good whilst it was cooking. I thought the meal looked quite fancy when it was placed in front of me, I don’t think it would look out of place in a classy restaurant! But the truth is in the eating…. the mother-in-law gave it “11 out of 10!” and the rest of us agreed. This meal has been added to the “must cook again” list!

steak2

After being a bit disappointed with the last HelloFresh beef stir-fry I had my reservations about this one. I needn’t have worried though because this stir-fry was GORGEOUS. The steak was tender and the sauce was full of flavour. The toddler didn’t have this meal with us as we had it on a nursery day (she has a big dinner there) so I can’t say if she would’ve eaten it or not. But it was an absolute win with the adults of the family!

pasta bake

I’m not sure that I’d ever even heard of Romanesco before, let alone cooked with it. It’s a strange looking vegetable that is a cross between broccoli and cauliflower. It turns out that it’s pretty tasty too. I’m a big fan of pasta bakes and make them regularly but tend to stick to making the same old ones. This dish felt like proper comfort food and we all thoroughly enjoyed it. There was even quite a bit leftover so I had it for lunch the next day.

My final thoughts on our second HelloFresh Box:

I was glad to see that the quality of produce supplied in this box was just as high in standard as the first time around. The meat, in particular, was second to none. Again, there wasn’t a single meal that I didn’t like and I actually now have a few new favourite meals! The toddler enjoyed all of the meals that she ate with us which is kind of a big deal seeing as mealtimes are often a bit of a battle.

What we weren’t so keen on: 

  • It was often difficult to know which order we were best off cooking our meals in, in order to make the most of the fresh ingredients. The spinach (from the first box) did have an “eat me first” sticker on it but after that we had to go by eye and decide what would keep best in the fridge and what would need eating first.
  • I never thought I would say this but… there was too much food. We’re a small family – two adults and a two-year-old (who, as I mentioned earlier, doesn’t eat an evening meal with us every night) and therefore the quantities supplied for each meal was more than we could actually eat, which is a real shame. I have, however, noticed that you can order the Classic HelloFresh boxes for 2 or 3 people so perhaps that would be better suited to our family/lifestyle.
  • Recipe timings: more often than not the meals took quite a bit longer to prepare and cook than it said it would on the recipe card. Although, I often find this is the case when you’re making something new for the first time.
  • We have a very well stocked kitchen cupboard so it felt a little silly at times to be using sachets of ketchup or balsamic vinegar when we have whole bottles of the stuff to hand. I appreciate that not everybody has a cupboard full of condiments, though.

What we loved:

  • The high quality of the meat products – it was far better than the meat we usually buy at the supermarket.
  • Seeing locally sourced veggies in our boxes!
  • Not having to do as much grocery shopping or meal planning – I loved having that time back to do other things.
  • Enjoying cooking again – hubby and I both love cooking but due to having such busy lives we often end up making the same meals for dinner week in, week out. Having our HelloFresh boxes delivered seems to have renewed our love for cooking food and trying new ingredients.
  • Seeing the toddler’s ‘happy plate’ – I’m so pleased that our two-year-old enjoyed the food. You can tell the recipes have been well thought out in terms of supplying ingredients/meals that the whole family can enjoy.

In conclusion: 

We have loved trialing the HelloFresh Family boxes and I would urge anybody who has ever considered trying them to give it a go – you’ll not be disappointed. The Family box, which is available from £37.95, is enough food for 2 adults and 2 children which I think is very reasonable, especially considering the fantastic quality of the ingredients. Unfortunately, as we are only a family of 3, we ended up not being able to eat all of our meals and so we would’ve been paying for food that would end up being thrown away. Personally, I think the Family Box would be better suited to a family of two adults and two older children.

It’s worth noting that if you subscribe to the HelloFresh boxes you can check out the forthcoming meals for the next week and if you don’t fancy them, you can pause your subscription. I think this is a great idea. I don’t like fish so being able to pass up on recipe boxes containing fish meals makes a subscription more appealing to me – there’d be nothing worse than paying for food you would never eat in a million years!

If you’re stuck in a rut with meal planning – then I would encourage you to try the HelloFresh boxes (there’s normally a good offer available on your first box). It will give you plenty of inspiration and bring a bit more joy back into dinner times.

Check out the HelloFresh website to find out more about their subscription options and have a look at the recipes.

Are you currently stuck in a meal planning rut?

Do you think your family would enjoy the HelloFresh boxes?

**I was sent two HelloFresh Family boxes over a two week period for the purpose of this review. All photographs and opinions in this blog post are my own. **

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Family Fever