Tag Archives: dandelion lounge

Competition-tastic!

I am all excited about competitions this week!  Why?  Well, two reasons – I have won one and I am running one!  

popping-champagne-cork1Competitions makes me feel all nostalogic, entering competitions is something my Nana used to do on my behalf and also with me.  My Nana was master of the “tie breaker” and she used to win loads of stuff too – a lego set and a snoopy watch (I still have the watch in my jewellery box!) are two prizes I still fondly remember! 

So what did I win, well over at Mums Like You I won two tickets to the Designer Baby Show so have the chance to spend a day enjoying shopping, talking and discovering best-of-breed baby products.  Sadly for me the timing (15th November) and the geography (Berkshire, I live in Cheshire) with baby number two due early October meant I have returned the tickets for another lucky winner to be redrawn – I like to think I am sharing the love!  So on this occassion, whilst the taking part was important it was pretty much all about the winning!  Ha Ha!

So that’s the won one, now to the one I am running … which is for my stationery business, Dandelion Lounge.  It will coincide with our Christmas Card, Festive Photo Inserts and Thank You card designs all going live for the festive season and will be running over at the fabulous Café Bébé starting on Sunday 7th through to Saturday 12th September.  Full details are already posted up there in anticipation so I shall say no more and let you head on over and check it out … and whilst you are there you still have time to enter a great competition from DaisyChainBaby to win win a gorgeous gift basket worth nearly £30. 

You gotta be in it to win it!  So please do go check it out!

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Mums Like You

I am so chuffed, Dandelion Lounge is running a new banner ad campaign on http://www.mumslikeyou.com I’ve screen grabbed one of the ads running on the site – what do you think? 

MumsLikeYou_pinkMums Like You is a new, ambitous and great newcomer to the online community circuit so if you haven’t paid a visit yet, I’d recommend it as a great online destination to enjoy a coffee break or nap time or two.   Mums Like Your enables mothers to stay in touch, share parenting advice and discuss topics we all face as a parent.

I can honestly say its a genuinely friendly community of mums – in the real world I am far from shy but in the virtual one I have been a bit of a lurker for a while, felt very self conscious and just frankly not cool enough to join the groups, forums & communities.  I’ve joined a decent number now and this and a few others have been the most welcoming, helpful & supportive.  So thank you Mums Like You! 

These banners form the start of our Christmas promotional activity which me and the team back at the Lounge are getting super excited about, last year was our “First Christmas” and we were blown away by the popularity of our Christmas cards and photo inserts.  We’re very much working hard and hoping to continue our first years success.  The collection will be going live online shortly but if you would like an e-brochure sending to you in the meantime just drop me an email at claire@dandelionlounge.co.uk  or register online at www.dandelionlounge.co.uk and you’ll get an email as soon as the colletion goes live.

Sorry to be mentioning Christmas in August – but hey I’m a planner by nature and marketer by trade – I’ve got Easter finished before Santa has made to the Chimney!  Cx

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Getting ready for baby number two

I am 31 weeks pregnant, my due date is 5th October and according to my iPhone I have 62 days left to my due date – that sounds organised doesn’t it?  But I am so not organised.  So not ready.  Getting ready for baby number two is what I am SUPPOSED to be doing, but I actually, weirdly don’t really know where to start.  I feel so not ready that today it actually scared me! 

What little time I have when my 2 year old is sleeping is filled with project managing house renovations, trying to work out how to prepare my toddler for the imminent arrival, getting the Christmas 2009 collection for Dandelion Lounge finalised and general anxiety about “hitting reset” and rewinding to where we were two and a bit years ago being responsible for a newborn life.  Add my bestest little guy, H, into that equation and I can’t see how life will add up from October onwards.  Life at Lancaster Mews since H arrived has revolved around him and his routine, so who’s routine is going to be followed when there are two, very different routines, needs and agenda’s?  How the devil do you prepare for and do that?  Answers on a postcard/comment box please! 

So to my getting ready list … OK so I have “the stuff”  – the moses basket, the cot, car seat etc.  I have some experience – I know which way round a nappy goes, that babes cry and eventually I’ll start to understand why and to make sure the frill isn’t tucked in to the inner liner on nappies to help avoid busting nappies (one of my top tips for first time mums that one!).   But this time getting ready isn’t about stuff or just about me and Mr L its about H.  Its a teeny bit about delivery and a lot about making it right and positive for my toddler H.  The latter I really don’t know where to start with.

I know me, H and Mr L all survived labour & delivery.  I know it was a long 36 hours.  I know gas & air doesn’t start to kick in until inhale number 10 so I know to start just before the contraction begins (another top tip!)  I know I couldn’t have loved anyone more than the anaesthetist who gave me my epidural after 28hours and that in the end it was all worth it, but that is about it.  I have successfully blanked everything else from my brain.  I also know that I wrote in my diary on the day I gave birth …*Remember c-section planned next time* – I left myself a message – surely I did this for a reason?! 

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First time round Mr L and I spent 2 hours a week for 9 weeks attending NCT classes, learning all about the choices and options.  As yet I have yet to pick up a pregnancy book.  I have loads and they are all still in the loft – first time around I knew exactly the size of my foetus, embryo, baby throughout my 40 weeks in relation to various, generally edible items, from coffee beans, to plums, to apples to grapefruit etc.  This time I have to check my iPhone between nursery runs, toddler classes, play dates, phone calls, work, home and the odd occasional splash of a social life!

Last time labour started and I went to hospital around 1am, we can’t just go to hospital with a toddler in the house!  I really don’t  want to be seen by, or subject my parents to, having to see me in labour.  So I am hoping that I will go into labour on either a Monday, Tuesday or Thursday morning between (9am & 1pm) while H is at nursery.  That way Mr L can simply call the Grandparents to pick him up, we simply shimmy off to the hospital when we’re ready, welcome baby number two and return home with new babe in arms to little H who’s had a fabulous day and possibly overnight sleepover with his Grandparents.  Is that a plan?  No it clearly isn’t but that is all I’ve got right now, so if you’re listening to me reviewing this post out loud baby number two – Monday, Tuesday or Thursday morning work for us, and that includes you – OK?  Please?  OMG I am begging my unborn child to do things, next I’ll be attempting bribery with colostrum, the power has already shifted, she already holds all the cards!

Whilst pregnant in 2007 I turned my office into H’s nursery which is to be “baby number two’s” nursery – choose baby name is on the to do list!  Now H is being promoted to what was, until a few weeks ago, our guest room and I am just putting the finishing touches to his big boys bedroom with his own “big bed”!  I plan to move him from nursery to bedroom and from cot to bed hopefully next week (blackout blinds & John Lewis permitting!)   Also at 27 months want to tackle potty training, that may afford me a few nappy free weeks before I return to 12 a day – but wondering if I have left it too close to a new sibling arriving?  Had planned to start on Thursday but now H has come down with a virus & it feels unfair to try to start if he’s under the weather, sigh!  Definitely one that needs more thought! 

Well you know what I feel better just having blogged this out, I’m sure all these things will happen, in their own time and if they don’t they don’t … but deep down, well not that deep at all really, I am a planner and I would them all to be done, quickly, easily and preferably by now! 

Anyway I am signing off for another restless, uncomfortable, dare I say it “bumpy” night ahead!  More to come on the ever evolving “to do”, “to get”, “to order” lists I create as I count down the … 62, nearly 61 days to baby number two … all advice, warnings, tales & recommendations received with mucho thanks!

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Its been a while …

… since I wrote about what I’ve been up to and the trials of life sent our way.  I’m now 24 weeks pregnant with baby number two and having been terribly ill for the first 14 or so weeks have had a good couple of months sickness free and generally feeling quite well, if a little tired but that is life as a working mum with a two year old toddler! 

I have been working on some freelance marketing projects and met some really nice new people I haven’t worked with before which is great – a big shout out to the teams at YOYO Media and MadHouse HQ and fingers crossed for their imminent pitches!  Dandelion Lounge has displays, sample packs and competitions running at a number of Summer Fairs and Charity events.  If you aren’t at one and want a chance to win some of our fabulous cards, its easy, just register on www.dandelionlounge.co.uk before 30th September.

Currently and for the last three weeks (and counting!) my family and are living with my parents whilst we have a new kitchen and bathroom fitted – we are already a week over and the frustration around the whole project and unreliable tradesmen is too great to write anymore than that at this point – grrr – I’ll write more on this I am sure but when tempers and patience aren’t as tested and fraught! 

On a happier note I am counting down to a weeks holiday back down at our place in Cornwall at the begining of July.  The journey down there is a 5 hour one so we are treating ourselves and breaking the journey up with a hotel stop over either way and including a day trip to Thomas Land at Drayton Manor www.thomaslanduk.co.uk my little H is a big fan!  I will report back with a review of our experience in July.

Well I had better sign off, the weekend is here and although we are uprooted from our home on the plus side we do have extra grandparenting childcare!  Tomorrow is Fathers Day and we are headed for a day trip to Monkey Forest www.trentham-monkey-forest.com  so need to head out under grey June skies (I want a refund on Summer so far!) and buy food for our picnic.

Ciao for now!  Claire

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Look who’s Two!

H, my son, turned two in April.  I like to share our stationery designs with you here so below are the birthday party invitation and thank you card Dandelion Lounge http://www.dandelionlounge.co.uk created for him.  Claire x

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Doing the juggle…

That’s what I’ve been up to … what’s the juggle I hear you ask?  The mummy juggle of course!  Still not sure then let me explain …

I have H who is now a mere eight weeks from his second birthday, I work on a freelance basis in marketing, I run Dandelion Lounge http://www.dandelionlounge.co.uk I also run my home, kitchen, laundry, H’s childcare, Husband and try to ensure thank you, birthday & anniversary cards & gifts are with the right people for the right date.  Usually this is a fairly hectic but balanced weekly pattern, I can’t say routine because I don’t really “do routine” and working freelance isn’t a routine work choice – which is why I like it. 

Anyway, there I was at the beginning of January in dark, cold, mid credit crunch Britain thinking I’ll be at home concentrating on home, family and Dandelion Lounge – no one will have budget to use a freelancer … wrong, diddly, wrong wrong … bang, squeak, squeal … that would be the sound of the wheels in my life going off  the rails!    The last three of four weeks has seen me on trains before 8am, my son staying over with Grandparents, me working back into an office (I usually work from home visiting offices for meetings only) and worst of all me wearing a suit – I hate suits.  What are suits all about?!  They are such a grim requirement of corporate life – the whole power dressing thing has always alluded me. 

Its been a crazy month!  A bit disappointing at times, exciting at others, but all in all a great month!   If the mumy juggle sounds familar to you I’d love to hear your highs and lows! 

P.s.  I am also very pleased to have joined The British Mummy Bloggers http://britishmummybloggers.ning.com/ so if you’re passing mummy blogger I’ll see you there!

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Here they are, sharing my recent cards …

I promised to post up and share my Christmas card design so here it is, also in the gallery (if I’ve done it correctly!) should be included the “Thank you” card all featuring exclusively designed by my other baby, Dandelion Lounge!

There are loads of different designs for Thank you and other cards to celebrate and share life’s little milestones all loaded on www.dandelionlounge.co.uk so head to the lounge and have a browse.  Let me know what you think by adding your comments here or on our Facebook page.    Cheers, Claire x

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