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The Allergy & Free From Show Liverpool 2017

*This post contains affiliate links*

On Sunday 5th November I took my boys who both have dairy allergies to the Allergy and Free From Show. We went to the 2016 Allergy and Free From Show and they both enjoyed it.
Busylazymum visits Allergy and Free From Show in Liverpool November 2017
When we entered the show it looked much bigger than last year and had a different layout. One of the first stands we came across was Pizza Express.. Now if you follow me on social media you will have seen I shared their post a few weeks ago regarding making pizzas with dairy-free cheese which I would have expected them to be sampling but they weren’t. They were only offering gluten free brownies which I was quite disappointed by.

We walked past the GOSH! stand and I was shocked when the boys wanted to try them as they usually prefer to try ‘snacky’ items. The women on this stand were lovely and they chatted with the boys & giving them lots of tasters. They were offering 4 packets for £5 which is a great deal and I’m gutted now that I chose not to buy them at the time as these retail for around £2-£2.50 per pack.

We continued through the stalls and there was a lot on offer. The majority of stands were aimed at those that are Gluten free and there were quite a few Skincare stalls including Eczema UK who had a dermatologist available to talk to. Schar held a café in the middle of the room, which was very busy.

I was a bit disappointed to find that Tesco were the only supermarket that had attended this year. Last year I remember there was both Tesco, Asda and if I remember correctly Morrison’s as well. It came as a bit of a shock that these supermarkets weren’t there as the choice in Free-From options has increased massively in their stores. The Tesco stand was very busy and as soon as a taster would be laid out they would be gone. Luckily I was able to get the boys a chocolate cake taster each and they were so pleased. I have promised them a dairy free chocolate cake from Tesco to share over the Christmas Period.

As we made our way through the stalls we came across the Naked stall, now I know Tristan loves their bars as he had them for a snack at school. The man on this stall was very chatty and the boys were made up when he gave them a packet of raisins each which he said tasted like cola bottles. (They have both taken these to school today as a snack so I’m sure they’ll be raving about these later). The man also gave them a packet of Naked nibbles which he recommended adding to porridge to give it some flavour.

We spoke to The Happy Snack Company stall several times around the Allergy and Free From Show and were given lots of their Nut Free Roasted Fav-va beans which the boys loved. We stopped by the Kirsty’s ready meals stall and the boys shared a spicy meatball kids meal and tried a Spanish chicken sample each as well. Kirsty’s stall offered 4 ready meals for £5 which again is a good deal as the kids meals retail at just below £2 and the adult portions are t below £3 each. Unfortunately they only had 1 type of the Kirsty’s Kids meal available.

Busylazymum visits Kirsty's Stand Allergy and Free From Show in Liverpool November 2017

The boys loved the free tasters they were allowed to try. When they approached a stall they were asked about their allergies before being offered to try something. I know how disappointed they are when we’re in the supermarket and we walk past a samples stand and they’re not allowed. They tried KOKO milk and their butter on some crackers, the butter was on offer 2 for £2.50 and the woman on the stall said they retail for just under £2 each, so again a great saving.

Tucked away at the back of the Allergy and Free From Show was the goody bag queue, it was quite a long queue but it was worth the wait. They gave out not 1 but 2 bags per person and were full of free full sized packets, sample sized snacks, coupons and leaflets. Our Goody bag and free tasters we collected from the Allergy and Free From Show have filled the boys snack box. They both excitedly went into school and told their teachers all about the food they had tried and showed them their snacks.

Busylazymum visits Allergy and Free From Show in Liverpool November 2017

There are 4 Allergy and Free From Show’s each year. Upcoming Events are as follows:

3-4 March 2018 SECC, Glasgow
2-3 June 2018, STATION, Berlin
6-8th July 2018 Olympia, London
3-4th November 2018 Exhibition Centre, Liverpool

More information can be found at http://www.allergyshow.co.uk

You can read more about our experience with Allergies in my previous post here.

Educational Quizzes Review

Educational Quizzes

*Sponsored Post*

This half term I was given the fantastic opportunity of trying out the Educational Quizzes website with my boys , Tristan aged 6 and Lewis aged 4.

 

A Little About Educational Quizzes.

Educational Quizzes is a monthly subscription designed to help children be successful at school by making the school curriculum easy and enjoyable. The quizzes written by teachers cover curriculum from Key Stage 1 all the way up to GCSE Level. The subscription costs £9.95 per month and can be cancelled at any time. Educational Quizzes are conscious that not everyone is able to afford the monthly subscription and for this reason schools can sign up students from as little as £2 per year which is a tiny price to pay for more engagement with parents.

How we got on.

I logged into Educationalquizzes.com and selected Key Stage 1 quizzes. I then let the boys have free reign on my laptop and Tristan being more IT savvy took the lead. He chose to try the 2 times tables questionnaire and loved that it automatically told him if he’d got it right or not when he chose an answer. He was very proud to tell me that he’d got 9/10. Next he did a mixed times tables and got a bit frustrated when he was getting more wrong. I know he hasn’t done all the times tables in school yet so this didn’t worry me. If he had then it would of highlighted areas which we could practice at home. Tristan also tried the spellings quiz however found this a bit tricky as he didn’t know what the sentence was supposed to say and couldn’t get his head around the fact he had to read the answers and pick which one was right. Educational Quizzes may I suggest an option to hear audio of the sentence to help the younger children?

As Lewis isn’t very IT savvy and he can’t read just yet I decided to do some quizzes with him. We did the ‘Counting on from a given number.’ I was quite impressed as Lewis is only 4 and with a bit of talking it through got 8 out of 10. We also did the ‘Alphabet (big and Small – Upper and Lower Case Letters 1’ quiz and this was great for Lewis as he’s at that stage where he is recognising and sounding out letters everywhere.

Overall View

I thought the Educational Quizzes website is a great resource for children, parents and schools. I’m not sure if I’d pay the  £9.95 subscription fee on a monthly basis but I definitely think it’s something I would use to keep my boys learning throughout the summer holidays. I think educational quizzes are a great resource to link school and home education and I am fully behind schools taking out the subscription for their students.

BusyLazyMum.co.uk is 1!


Today 28th October 2017 I celebrate 1 year of BusyLazyMum.co.uk. I thought I’d celebrate my blogging birthday with a little post looking over what we’ve achieved in our first year and our goals for the next quarter.

I’ll be honest my first year hasn’t gone to plan. I haven’t posted as often as I’d like to of but I’m happy with what I have achieved from the amount of work I have put in.

My Statistics

Blog Statistics

8277 Visitors

29184 Visits

My most viewed post is Christmas Opening Weekend at Inspirations Wholesale which had 2,952 views.

DA 13

Social Statistics

Facebook – 125 likes

Twitter – 156 followers –

Instagram – 62 followers

Pinterest – 23 followers

As you can see I have focused more on Facebook and Twitter and my following shows this.

Please feel free to click the links above to like or follow us across social media.

My favourite posts

  1. Boost Your Income with: Mystery Shopping.
  2. Allergy Awareness Week 2017: My Experience.
  3. Christmas Open Weekend at Inspirations Wholesale.
  4. £15 Holidays with The Sun.
  5. Chester Zoo Annual Pass Review.

My Sponsored Posts

I have been fortunate enough to have had a few opportunities in my first year to do sponsored posts.

  1. Valentines Day Gift For All The Family – Sponsored by Panasonic.
  2. Educational Quizzes Subscription Review – Sponsored by EducationalQuizzes.com

Goals for the first quarter of year 2.

  • Reach 10,000 visitors.
  • Focus my social media efforts on Pinterest and Instagram to reach 100 followers on each. Whilst also increasing my Facebook and Twitter followers to 200 each.
  • Increasing my DA

To help me reach my goals I intend to rebrand the BusyLazyMum.co.uk site and implement everything I am learning from The Genius Bloggers Toolkit. I will also implement what I have learnt from my giveaway prize of a blog audit by Jenna Farmer at thebloglancer.co.uk. I will also be co-hosting the #Blogstravaganza Linky in December so keep a look out for me.

Christmas Open Weekend at Inspirations Wholesale.

Inspirations wholesale Christmas BusyLazyMum

I heard of Inspirations Wholesale in Bromborough a long time ago and unfortunately never got round to popping in. When I found out about their Christmas open weekend via Facebook I knew this would be the perfect opportunity for me to pop in and have a nosey and I am so glad I did!I wasn’t quite sure where Inspirations was but found it relatively easily. I was shocked by the sheer size of the building! I wasn’t expecting a little shop but was expecting something less than half the size, it was huge!! We went in and they were offering drinks and cake for a donation to Macmillan Cancer Support which I thought was a brilliant idea!I love Christmas and love to make it special for our boys. I like to have themes when we decorate for Christmas and recent years have been quite bland. So I have been in search of some inspiration to make our first Christmas in our own home that extra bit special. Inspirations Wholesale have so many stunning themes I am stuck for choice!Inspirations wholesale Christmas BusyLazyMum

We went in and the boys were so excited to see all the trees and the colours. There was a wreath making display which Tristan watched eagerly and asked if we could make one. I promised to do one nearer Christmas so watch this space – I’m not very artistic so it might turn into an epic fail but it’s worth a try, and thanks to Inspirations we have an idea of where to start.

We wondered around the colourful displays and came to their Facebook frame competition, which there was a short queue for. The boys got involved and used the Christmassy props provided. Good luck to everyone that entered! The prize is a £50 gift voucher to spend in store. I love the elf hat Lewis is wearing its £9.99 + VAT and you can buy it here.

We then went for a wonder along the aisles where the non display items were and the boys started to get a bit bored. So we only had a short wonder and then left. I thought these elf signs were great and will 100% be adding one to our decorations this year. Which one though? Decisions Decision! You can buy them for £3.75+VAT here

The boys both loved the elf trees. Although Tristan said he loved the upside down tree too.  As the elf comes to stay with us throughout December we will probably be buying most of this range in the near future.

It’s safe to say that when it’s a bit closer to Christmas and my ‘Christmas is ages away’ Scrooge husband has found his Christmas spirit we will be returning and I shudder to think how much we will spend – not because it’s expensive because everything I saw was very reasonably priced, but because I will want to buy it all!

You can view some of Inspirations Wholesale stock on their website here and follow them on Facebook here.

 

 

 

Thrive: Feel Stress Free App

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For the past month or so I have had the privilege of trying out the Thrive app which is for mental health conditions. I personally don’t deal with stress very well and have been told by both my GP and a counsellor that I suffer from mild situational anxiety.  I have chosen not to treat this and try lifestyle changes instead, so I jumped at the chance of giving this app a try.

Background Info
Thrive – Feel Stress Free is a subscription service app. It is designed by psychiatrists and psychologists to help to gradually build resilience to and manage stress, anxiety and mild depression using clinically proven techniques such as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and Mindfulness. Subscription costs can be paid monthly £5.99, quarterly £14.97 and yearly £47.88.

We have negotiated a FREE TRIAL for our readers and you can find the code and a link I subscribe at the bottom of this post.

The App itself

When you first log into Thrive – Feel Stress Free each day it will ask you how you feel and what has contributed to you feeling this way.

 

 

 

 

 

Once you have answered these the app will give you some goals based on what you have told it.  As you can see from the goals provided in the image below I had answered questions suggesting that I hadn’t done much exercise or been very social recently.

 

 

 

 

 

The menu’s come in island forms and the main island is the first which includes the following options:

Thrive feel stresss free

– Thrive
Gives you direct access to the Thrive website

– Breathing
Takes you to the Calm Breathing exercise where you can choose aa duration of a few minutes and it will provide an exercise.

Thrive

– Meditation
The meditation tab takes you to a new menu. Where you can choose from Meditations, Sensory, Mindful Body Scan, Mindful Earth and Mindful Walk. Each option talks you through an exercise where you think about your breathing, your positioning and the sensations you can feel.

Thrive

– Deep Muscle

This takes you to deep muscle relaxation another excersise which talks you through tensing your muscles and then relaxing and controlling your breathing.

Thrive

-Self Suggestion

allows you to link a word or statement to a state of relaxation and requires you to have previously completed the deep muscle relaxation exercises.

– Message in a bottle.

From time to time you will find inspiring and motivational quotes wash up on your island.

 

 

 

 

 

Moving to the second island menu you get 2 new options:

 

 

 

 

 

– Zen Garden

This allows you to draw in the sand and add different accessories.

 

 

 

 

 

– Zen Challenge

This is a game which you join the buckets together by drawing in the sand.

 

 

 

 

 

Moving to the third island you get 4 new options:

 

 

 

 

 

– Message

write a message in a bottle and help motivate someone else.

– Progress

Everything you do on Thrive – Feel Stress Free is logged and you can check your progress here.

– Mood Meter

Asks you questions and gives you an idea of if you are suffering with anxiety or depression and how severe it is. I remember I was asked these questions by my counsellor at every session with her few years ago, so they aren’t just random questions with no purpose. The app uses these answers to suggest a plan and produces goals for you.

 

 

 

 

 

– Wellbeing 

Further information on your problems and things to change or work on.

 

 

 

 

 

My View

I thought the app was very good, as you can see explained above it contains a lot of support and different things to try. I personally found it quite hard to become a habit or routine. When I was stressed or feeling a bit anxious it wasn’t my first thought to do some calm breathing or to meditate, but I think that over a longer period of time it would help ease a stressful or anxious situation.

Try Thrive – Feel Stress Free with a 1 month trial by clicking here and entering the following coupon STRESSFREE0917.

Disclosure: I have received this app in return for advertising and this post includes affiliate links.

 

£15 Holidays with The Sun (including codes)

£15 Holidays with The Sun

Here at Busylazymum.co.uk we think The Sun’s cheap Holidays are great! We love them! In the past 3 years we have been to Butlin’s 5 times and Pontin’s once all at a fraction of the price their own website’s quote.

The latest Holiday deal is open for booking here at Club950. All the information you need, park availability, which holidays you need to pay extra for etc can be found there aswell.

We went to Pontin’s Prestatyn Sands in February half term for just £38, albeit we were disappointed with the cleanliness, but not everyone has the same standards. I would suggest heading over to TripAdvisor and checking the reviews for yourselves before booking.

Prestatyn Sands

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The last time we went to Butlin’s was the weekend before Christmas 2016, Friday – Monday for the 4 of us, and we paid a total of £150.00 which consisted of the £38 paid when booked via Sun Holidays for the Accommodation, £36 Power Charge, Linen charge of £16 and £60 for our entertainment passes. We thought this was brilliant as we saw Santa and went Ice skating and there was more festive entertainment on top of all the everyday entertainment. We normally pay £120 when we go and it’s not around Christmas.

Butlins Skegness Lagoon Bay

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you want to get something booked it is so easy! Head over to the booking site here and simply enter these 5 codes, 4 destination options and 4 date options and your options will show up.

The Sun holiday codes will be added here daily.

Code 1             POLO

Code 2             LOBE

Code 3              CHEF

Code 4              M7U6

BONUS            SWAN

Please pop back and let us know where you’ve booked. We hope you have a great time!

 

 

Allergy Awareness Week 2017: My Experience

 

As you may or may not know this week 24th – 30th April is Allergy Awareness Week. About 8 years ago I didn’t really know much about any allergies; except Asthma and Eczema which I have experienced but I didn’t realise that asthma is closely linked to allergies.

I had a naïve uneducated view that if someone came into contact with something they had a mild allergic to it gave them a rash or an upset stomach, a bit like a stomach bug which most will get from time to time. Obviously I knew that there were severe allergies which the individual needed to carry an epi-pen to prevent anaphylactic shock – like my step-sisters son does for a peanut allergy. I didn’t realise how life changing any type of allergy is and I don’t think you do until you have one yourself or someone close to you does and I’m going to share some of my experiences.

 

Dairy Allergies

My eldest son, Tristan has had problems with diarrhoea and stomach pains for most of his life. We had been fobbed off by doctors being told it was toddler’s diarrhoea. Over Christmas 2015 we visited family and Tristan played Pie Face with his cousins (for those of you that don’t know the game it’s basically getting squirty cream splattered in your face). Tristan’s face came up in a massive rash which took 24 hours before it began to go down despite being washed and various creams to try and get rid of it.

He’s now been dairy-free for approximately 9 months since the beginning of the summer holidays last year. We felt it would be easier to monitor what he was eating and help him get used to the change in diet without looking at his friends eating the things he loves but now can’t have. In the past 9 months Tristan’s symptoms have improved drastically previously his bowel movements were 90% loose and now it’s completely changed and is about 90% solid.

From my perspective cutting out the dairy from Tristan’s diet has been relatively easy. We have to check the ingredients on everything he has. Most of the everyday dairy products have been swapped to soya or coconut based products which are ALOT more expensive! I have found the dairy-free options don’t cater very well for children in the way of cereal bars and bags of biscuits. Luckily I’ve found Tristan is happy with other healthier snacks like raisins and fruit winder type things. I was quite impressed with the seasonal items available over Christmas and Easter from the free from section in the supermarkets.

When I asked Tristan how he’s finding being dairy free and he said ‘it’s ok, but I get a little bit sad because I’m not allowed dairy and I can’t have things like Yorkshire puddings and they were one of my favourites.’ He’s doing so well with it, a lot better than I expected. If someone offers him something to eat he will always ask if it has dairy in and say no thank you if it has. It’s been suggested by the paediatrician that we start to re-introduce a small amount of dairy under a dietician and see how we get on. I’m interested in seeing how we get on as Tristan’s mistakenly had milk chocolate with no obvious reaction. On the other hand he’s dipped his finger in my tea and touched his face – I know the things kids do – and had a rash reaction.

One of the main things with a food allergy that people don’t think about I am cross contamination. Something as simple as making a ‘normal’ sandwich then making a dairy-free sandwich without washing the board causes a risk of cross contamination. Tristan has a habit of sucking his fingers – a bit like some children suck their thumbs – this could cause cross contamination and is more than likely the reason he still has that 10% loose bowel movement. Hopefully he’ll grow out of it one day which is a possibility.  One of Tristan’s cousins had a dairy allergy and grew out of it, unfortunately it’s resurfaced now she’s hit puberty. Fingers crossed they both grow out of it. You can find more information about food allergies at Allergy UK.

 

Eczema

My youngest Lewis has suffered with eczema for most of his life. When he was younger he suffered with it severely on his face. We tried lots of different creams and steroids which sometimes helped temporarily.  The best thing that helped him and got rid of it on his face was going on holiday abroad. Doctors were adamant that the sun and sea salt would not affect it. However 2 weeks abroad and Lewis’s eczema went from severe to virtually none existent.

For the past 2 years we have found as the winter draws in the eczema appears. Although it’s now his wrists, his elbows and back of his knees where he suffers now. Keeping the area’s moisturised several times a day with different creams does help. Lewis itches his wrists mainly at night and is in a vicious cycle. To prevent this we smother his wrists in Double-base cream and wrap bandages around his wrists. Generally this works quite well for us at the moment, making it more manageable. You can find more information about eczema at Eczema.org

Asthma

Asthma is a long term condition which could basically be explained as sensitive airways. An asthma attack can be triggered by a variety of things such as dust, pets and pollen. I’m including this in this post as asthma is very closely linked to allergies. I’m very familiar with asthma as most of my family have it. Asthmatic’s need to take a preventer inhaler regularly with the aim of keeping the asthma under control. Asthmatics also carry a reliever to use in the event of an attack. You can findmore information at Asthma UK. 

Coeliac Disease

I had never heard of Coeliac Disease until a met my mother in law who has it. Coeliac Disease is a autoimmune disease. It causes an allergic reaction to gluten products including wheat, barley and rye which are in most everyday foods. If someone with Coeliac Disease has gluten they experience symptoms such as diarrhoea, nausea, bloating, tiredness, wind and constipation. You can find out more here at Coeliac UK.

Tree Pollen

A couple of years ago my sister in law broke out in a horrible rash on her face, neck and chest. After a series of tests she was told it’s an allergy to a specific type of tree pollen. Unfortunately this type of tree was a common tree which was located close to her house. She tried a variety of creams both steroid and moisturising and eventually found Aveeno cream soothe it.

My sister-in-law has since moved house and has found that her allergy has gone. She is able to cope with small amounts of this tree pollen. She has said the excessive use of steroid creams has left her skin aged more than it should be. Her daughter has recently broke out in the same rash and currently waiting to find out which tree pollen is causing it.

Unfortunately I have been unable to find a source of further information. I have found that this allergy is closely linked to hay fever, however the symptoms of hay fever do not include this rash. If you have any concerns or similar symptoms  please raise it with your GP.

Peanut Allergy

A peanut allergy is the one allergy that I’d heard of having life threatening consequences. If someone with a peanut allergy comes into contact with them they go into anaphylactic shock. They have to carry an epi-pen to relieve this. I’m not close to my step sister however I know that her son has this allergy. I didn’t realise how different this type of allergy was from other allergies. Last year we received a letter asking parents not to allow their children to eat peanuts before school and not to bring in anything with nuts as another child had a severe allergy. I don’t personally have much more information on peanut allergies but you can find out about peanut allergies here.

 

Chester Zoo Annual Membership.

Like a lot of families we love a trip to the Zoo and we’re quite lucky that we are less than an hour away from Chester Zoo. It’s a great day out for all the family. For our family of 4 it costs £96 for one visit (or we can get a 10% discount if we book in advance) and with living so close its an easily accessible day out which the kids love come rain or shine.

Chester Zoo offer an Annual Membership which costs a family of 4 £237 per year or if you pay by direct debit you can save an extra 10% taking it to £213 which costs less than 3 day visits and you can go as often as you like! You can also book a day visit and before you leave head to the membership office (the building to the right of the entrance) and they will deduct your visit’s entrance fee from your membership.

Chester Zoo Turtle

We have had membership for 16 months now… Thank you Santa 2015. and it has been great! Any weekend we can pop down for an hour or 2 and throughout the summer holidays we were at the zoo at least once a week.

As well as unlimited free entry to Chester Zoo for 12 months, an annual membership also provides the following benefits:-

  • Fast track entry.
  • 10% discount in shops and cafe’s.
  • Free entry to other zoo’s such as Bristol Zoo Gardens, Edinburgh Zoo, Newquay Zoo & many more.
  • Quarterly Zoo magazine.
  • 2 Membership Days where you can bring guests for half price.
  • Access to Junior Events.

You can find full details about Annual Membership at Chester Zoo here.

Chester Zoo also provide a number of events throughout the year.

In the run up to Christmas they offer ‘The Lanterns at Chester Zoo’ which is an event after dark in the zoo where they have lots of animal shaped lanterns and other acts. We went Christmas 2015 and our boys loved it. The Lanterns opens this year on 24th November 2017 with tickets priced from £12 per adult & £5 per child. You can book tickets here.

The Lanterns at Chester Zoo

March 2017 Income Report

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Where on Earth did March go??? It absolutely flew by for me! It’s probably due to the amount of work I’ve been doing which as you will see has paid off financially. Probably not great for my health as I feel exhausted, but we’re getting so close to our goal of buying our first home. I also had an exam on the 30th and after feeling like I’d been on autopilot for the whole topic it was safe to say I needed a whole lotta revision!

Why I publish Income Reports?

I’m going to be publishing a monthly income report to share with you the income from my blog and side hustles because not only will it encourage me to regularly take note of how much I’m actually earning, it will keep me motivated in pushing these side hustles to boost my income even more and I will be showing what sort of realistic figures you can achieve.

Side Hustle Income

Mystery Shopping.

£48.00

Mystery Shopping companies usually have 1 payday’s per month meaning assignments worked after the cut off period will be paid in the following month.

Cashback

£29.52

Here I am combining Cashback Apps such as Checkout Smart and TopCashBack with Cashback Schemes such as cashback rewards from banks. Most of the time these companies let you choose when to cash-out so I’m happy for it to stay there until I’ve build up a decent amount. Some also have a threshold that you need to reach before it will allow you to cash out.

Surveys

£6.00

I haven’t done any surveys this month as I’ve been busy with my other side hustles.

Red Wigwam

In last month’s Income Report I told you a little about Red Wigwam and how I’d joined up and become a temporary fulfillment manager with them, 12 hours per week from home. This month I’ve also done a lot of field merchandising for a national campaign they have for around 5 hours per week. I’ve done some mystery shopping but I’ve included that in the mystery shopping income.

£669.01

 

Access the world´s best live education

Blog Income

This month my blog has taken a bit of a backseat as I’ve been busy boosting my income with other side hustles.

Sponsored Posts

£0.00

Total side hustle income for March is £752.53

 

<<< Last Month’s Income Report

 

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