Monday, 26 December 2011

Getting Fit with Next and Davina McCall

I have always been a bit of an exercise junkie...in fact, since starting gymnastics aged 3, not a week has gone by without me flinging myself around a Body Combat or pump class or running through a park.  I set myself the ultimate goal of running the London Marathon in 2009 but halfway through training, I broke my big toe.  Now, breaking a toe is NOT conducive to any form of exercise regime and so, having gone from a fit, 4 times a week exerciser, for the first time in my life, I didn't do a thing.

Initially this REALLY frustrated me, but as I was setting up my own business and discovering social media my hours were soon filled and before I knew it, I was *out* of the exercise cycle.

I am now back at the point where I need to kick start my exercise again - I have felt really unhealthy/sluggish this past year and due to having an under-active thyroid and metabolism of a 70 year old, the weight has piled on.  I am on a heavy dose of Thyroxine but to kick start (increase) my metabolism, I need to exercise.   By increasing my metabolic rate, I will reduce body fat and increase lean muscle mass and consequently the metabolism will increase and aid my weight loss process.  This is down to the simple fact that muscle tissue uses more calories than fat tissue because it has a higher metabolic rate!




Next have collaborated with Davina McCall to launch a new shoe and fitness collection which will provide the ultimate workout clothing along with a range of innovative everyday shoes which feature F.I.T technology the reduce stress on load bearing joints whilst providing support.   These shoes are by far the sexiest things in the ever exploding range of "fitness shoes" and as a MBT and FitFlop devotee, it is lovely to see some pretty shapewear.  

Next are also launching an exclusive blogger campaign to get fit and if I am lucky enough to be selected, I will be posting my progress and of course my fitness styling tips throughout the month.  The whole range is stylish and affordable and I like the way you can mix pieces from the collection and still look lovely.  My favourite piece from the collection has to be the black joggers as they have a place for the MP3 - essential for when out running!!




I am really excited about getting back my physical fitness and will be blogging weekly about my success.

If you would like to join me on my journey, then please leave a comment and we can get fit and healthy together!

Peace and Love

S.A.M xx



Friday, 23 December 2011

Kinder Surprise meets Happy Feet 2

The last time I was handed glow sticks, in a room full of lasers and smoke, with loud music blaring out from huge speakers was circa 1994 in a warehouse somewhere off the M25 and as we entered One Mayfair, this was exactly what we were faced with.  Was I trying to recapture the days of my youth in the lead up to Christmas?  No siree I wasn't, but we were lucky enough to be invited by Kinder Surprise for a wonderful fun packed afternoon culminating with a screening of Happy Feet 2.

One Mayfair is a building with history - it was originally built as a church in the 1800s and despite being de-consecrated in the 1970s it still showed of it's majestic neo-classical splendour.  The ice rink was placed in the middle of what would have been the congregation and after a very quick chat with Rosie Scribble and her beautiful daughter I was dragged, nay pulled onto the ice rink by my three intrepid skaters.  I have to say, I was dreading this part, we took all three of them skating last year at Tower Bridge and it was a disaster.  None of them could skate, they all got cold and HAW pulled his knee so the thought of trying to hold three of them up was not appealing to say the least.  In fact, I was hoping that Dulwich Mum would have her au pair with her so I could borrow one of her arms to help me hold them up.   The traffic however ,had other ideas as Bea was very fashionably late!  I did catch a glimpse of her perfectly coiffured hair as I was dashing to the loo but that was it, no chance for a gossip and catch up which I was so looking forward to - next time!

The best thing about the ice rink is that it was FAKE.  Yes dear reader, this was  no ordinary ice rink as I was able to walk on the "ice" in my biker boots without any fear of falling over yet the children were able to "skate" . This was superb for the kids as it meant that even though they did fall, it wasn't cold and not to painful!  It was a really magical place to be, fake snow, Christmas songs (Beansey sang "Last Christmas" all the way home) and as much face painting and balloon modelling as you wanted.  I was ever so slightly worried at one point as both the boys were quite literally flinging themselves around the rink as their confidence grew, skating backwards and doing jumps without any fear.  Pixie initially was very hesitant, she kept falling over (no tears!) but with some support from the lovely Jess who works for Kinder, she was soon on her feet and giving Jane Torvill a run for her money.  In fact, she did so well, she won "best skater" and Beansey won "Best Dancer" for his attempts at "Body popping on ice".  They were loving the ice and snow so much, that the face painting didn't even get a look in.   After an hour or so, it was time for the viewing and the ice rink was turned into a cosy den with pillows and blankets and of course, popcorn!  

I thought the movie was a bit dis-jointed in places and despite having a stellar cast with a great soundtrack, it didn't really flow like the inaugural film.  The "bromance" between two Krill (voiced by Matt Damon and Brad Pitt) is a bit of a sub plot within the main story and it isn't really connected to the overall film.  They do get the best singing bits though with a bit of Wham and Rick Astley - 80s cheese at it's best!!!!  The global message didn't go unnoticed either and their was a touching scene between mother and son but overall, I wasn't that impressed. 

When I asked the kids afterwards what they thought, they didn't rave about it.  Beansy who is 8 said "It was ok, not as good as the first film" and BoBo said "It was a 7 out of 10". In fact, they were more taken with the ice skating and wanted to know when they could do it again.  

There was a HUGE pile of kinder eggs (toys only) which the children were allowed to help themselves to (fabulous, kept them entertained on the train home) and of course some chocolate eggs which were given to me to safeguard.  I have always been a fan of Kinder Surprise Eggs and more recently the Maxi bars as they are the ideal size for a child sized treat with the added bonus of a surprise toy - a perfect combination!  The children had been so beautifully behaved that I let them scoff them on the way home.  A great end to a great day!

video

Merry Christmas!

Peace and Love

S.A.M 

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

Super Amazing Mum Loves..........

For those of you who attended Cybermummy back in June, you can't have failed to miss Sian To's fluorescent pink satchel.  Now, I have a love of all things vintage (especially jewellery) and a leather satchel is not only incredibly nostalgic but also very practical, so with this in mind, I treated myself to an early Christmas present. 

Having seen how well made Sian's hot pink number was, my first port of call was to The Leather Satchel Company website where I was more than impressed by the array of different colours and combinations possible. You can quite literally design your own satchel  to your own specification, which really *really* appealed to me as I like to be unique!

I opted for a mirror finish platinum leather satchel as not only does it look amazing, it is also limited edition due to the nature of production (never ever been achieved before using a natural leather base) which give it a degree of exclusivity.   I called the workshop and the level of service was outstanding.  I spoke to a really lovely chap called Keith and we discussed in depth what I was going to use the satchel for (client meetings/school run) and then had a look at what options would suit my needs.  We decided on a 14" with briefcase handle and strap for a degree of flexibility.  |This is THE ONLY ONE OF ITS KIND IN THE WORLD!!!!  I placed my order and waited.

Now as a 20 years young (*ahem*) advertising bod who has seen it all and done it all with bells on (and then some), it takes a LOT to make me gasp with delight and gasp I did when I opened my parcel as it was a brown paper package tied up with string with an enchanting letter from Alice saying "read me".  I resisted as this was a Christmas present to myself and stuck it under the Christmas tree.


That lasted all of 10 minutes, when egged on by various tweeters, I opened the parcel.  My heart soared as I breathed in the heady smell of new leather and I was positively dazzled by the metallic finish....here is a very bad photo of me but a very good photo of the satchel....see how it goes with my lime green coat and LV scarf?



How amazing is that?!

Today, I took it on the school run where it was stroked and pawed by children and parents alike before I headed into Wimbledon for some last minute shopping.  I was stopped in Costa by a 20 something who proclaimed "THAT is the most amazing bag I have ever seen"  and you know what?  She is absolutely right!

Peace and Love

S.A.M 

Friday, 16 December 2011

Sterimar - a Mums Perspective!

Last week I vlogged about being a sterimar ambassador from a kids perspective and this week, you are treated to a little vlog from me!

Any questions, please do ask in the comments and I will get back to you!

Peace and Love

S.A.M xx

video

Monday, 12 December 2011

Santa at Selfridges

Today our school was closed  so the teachers could do their Christmas shopping  for an inset day and after taking the boys to the skate park this morning which was a massive hit as all the sulky teens were obviously at school we picked the Pixie up from pre school, scooted home for a quick lunch of beef bourginon and then headed on the train to London.

Bearing in mind we get on the tube at Wimbledon, by Putney Bridge this is what I was faced with:




All that fresh air had obviously exhausted them (or perhaps a late night sleepover at my parents the night before maybe?!) and so I relished in 20 minutes of "me" time before fighting my way up the stairs at Edgware Road for the walk to Selfridges.  We arrived and even though it was a school day for most, it seemed that lots of parents had let their kids have the day off and we had to book our tickets for 5:20pm leaving us with over an hour and a half to kill.  Well that was straight to the beauty hall for me (using the Big Man himself as a bribe for good behaviour) and I somehow managed to buy myself a new MAC lipstick and bottle of perfume - Gardenia by Jo Loves which is Jo Malone's new range, all four flavours (I'm sure Jo will correct me on my terminology!) are lovely and very different which made it very difficult to pick a favourite!   If you want a luxurious yet unique and long lasting scent, you know where to go!

Anyway, the time came and we headed downstairs where we were met by the uber organised clipboard elfs who told us our name was down, we were coming in and they whisked away our buggy.  The group allocated at 17:20pm consisted of 10 children who were all given name badges and were entertained by three gorgeous ballet dancers that had our Pixie transfixed!


We then entered the Winter Wonderland and our first port of call was to snow princess who had all the children sitting in a circle as she told them all about the "sounds of Christmas".  There was lots of interaction and every child was encouraged to press a button to hear a sound!  We then caught a colour to make a wish and headed into the fairy kingdom..........


In the Fairy kingdom each child was encouraged to make a wish before heading to see a very special surprise in the form of a real life Jack in the Box - he made lots of the children jump (and one of 2 of the parents!) and spent a long time asking them all questions - the kids were all totally lost in the moment, it was magical!





make a wish for the fairies!

whats in the box?

BOO!
It was then time for the main event and we were all led into a very plush and luxurious room where the kids sat on beanbags on the floor and us parents were on sofas...Santa then had a list of every childs wishes and knew what they were hoping for and what they were into - Beansey couldn't believe that Santa knew he had won Man of the Match at the weekend and BoBo was transfixed that Santa knew he wanted a JD bug.  He took a long time to talk to all the children and it was very unrushed.  He called my 3 up and had a little chat with them about being good and going to bed - I don't know how he knew that!

We then had photos and a cheeky snowball fight on the way out with Frosty the Snowman as real snowflakes fluttered down.  


We then hopped into black cab (not easy when you are loaded down with bags!) and headed to Wagamamas for a spot of supper before heading home.  It was a truly magical day I really hope that the kids will treasure the memory as much as I will!

Peace and Love

S.A.M xxx

Sunday, 11 December 2011

White Rabbit England

Growing up as a child in the 70s, I had the most enchanting night light that was basically an illuminated fairy toadstool that was made from china and hand painted.  It was truly delightful and I was the envy of my friends who all thought it was super cute!   It cast a soft and comforting light around the room and I remember always trying to catch the fairies and elves out by peering into the window and down the chimney, I was convinced they were real - I do believe in fairies, I do, I do, I do!

It seems that the fear of the dark (or an over active imagination, you decide) runs in the family as my little Pixie is now a holy terror at bedtime coming out with such gems as "no like the dark, Mr Tumble will knock on the door" and "I scared of the wicked witch".  So yes, I can conclude that too much cbeebies and "Wizard of Oz" viewing goes on in our house quite clearly!

We were sent a Rabbit Cottage Night Light from the gorgeous sisters Charlotte and Victoria over at White Rabbit England to review recently and being a lover of all things eclectic, I totally fell in love with the rabbit cottage night light as it instantly took me back to being a child with my toadstool night light!

It was beautifully made from bone china and hand painted and glazed, but best of all, it had 2 teeny tiny rabbits inside the house.  I put it into the Pixie's bedroom as a surprise for bedtime.


She was instantly transfixed, talking to the rabbits inside and showing them her bracelet.  I explained that the rabbits in their little china house were there to look after her at bedtime and she really like that idea.  In fact, it's probably best if I leave the rest of the review over to Pixie.  




video

The night light retails at £49 and recently won the gift of the year award.  The white rabbit England brand also has a lovely range of cushions, bedding and gifts and more will be added in 2012.  I am already a huge fan and would be happy to fall down the rabbit hole with them!

Peace and Love

S.A.M 


Silent Sunday

Saturday, 10 December 2011

Saturday Song

Sterimar - a Kids perspective!!

You all know that I am a MASSIVE fan of Sterimar for getting rid of colds and germs (and horrible snotty, runny noses in the kids) well after harping on about it for so long, they asked me to be an ambassador which, being such a huge fan, I said I would!

For those of you who don't know, Sterimar is a totally natural, isotonic nasal spray that uses sea water from the oyster farms of France.  It basically cleans the nose and banishes germs and is recommended by doctors, paediatricians and homoeopaths as a natural remedy for the winter.

Here's what some of the professionals say:

Dr Pamela Evans, Allergy Consultant at Addenbrooke's Hospital Cambridge.

"You can use Stérimar to cleanse the nose of pollen, and relieve nasal congestion and dryness"
Dr Mike Smith
"Saline Nasal drops have long been recommended to relieve congestion in babies but unless the baby's head is tilted back the drops cannot get to the hard to reach crevices and this action risks the mucus flowing back down the baby's throat; which can potentially cause further infection and is a discomforting process for the baby. Stérimar Baby is a great new option for parents as the micro-fine spray gets into all the nooks and crannies of the nasal passages to wash out any excess mucus and clear congestion gently and safely. The specially designed nozzle not only ensures the product can be safely administered but also makes the product very easy for parents to use with just one hand"
All pretty impressive stuff, but how does this translate to regular people everyday?  We have been using Sterimar for around 10 months now and the kids use it each day after brushing their teeth.  It has become part of our daily routine and here is a little video of Beansey explaining why he likes it:


Beansey - why I like Sterimar
So next time you or your loved ones is suffering from a blocked nose or cold, make sure you have some sterimar to hand!

Peace and Love

S.A.M xx

Thursday, 8 December 2011

My Pixie's first dance recital

So I blogged yesterday about fighting parents at the nativity play but today was another day, another show..this time my little Pixie's first dance recital.  She has taken to ballet like a prima donna elephant but it's all about the fun right?!!



She fares much better at tap, all that stomping around, she is well practised in that at least!  It was such a lovely recital - they are all 2 and 3 and they had a little routine for each song that they have been practising for weeks.  They "rocked around the Christmas tree", went "somewhere over the rainbow" and "helped santa who was stuck up the chimney"

It was such a lovely little recital and all the girls did so, so well.




As for my little Pixie, she loved it!  She is an angel in the nativity play tomorrow so getting quite used to performing!









Peace and Love

S.A.M xx

Fairy Princess Play Tent Review

Regular readers will know that my little Pixie is *obsessed* with anything pink, fairytale and frou frou.  Despite my trying not to be "Pink for girls and Blue for boys" she is utterly obsessed and a total girlie girl, which I think must be a knock on effect of having two big brothers!

She was fortunate enough to be sent a Fairy Princess Play Tent to review by the lovely people over at www.playhouses.co.uk who specialise in all sorts of make believe play houses from gorgeous, intricate wooden multi level play houses to  wooden castles and Wigwams.  There really is something for everyone and every budget.

The instructions said that it was easy to put together in less than 20 minutes, so armed with Beansey aged 8 we set to work.  The first thing that struck me was how well made and solid the set was.  Firstly, there are NO plastic rods, they are all wooden and very strong wood at that, for anyone who has wrestled and then broken plastic rods, this is great news.  The connectors are also incredibly strong and it was very easy to put together.  In fact, I supervised from the sofa and let Beansey and Pixie get on with it.  You are meant to then screw nails into the playhouse, but to be honest, we didn't do this as I knew we would be moving it around the house and it is big once constructed!

We then added the canvas - this is very strong and shower proof so ideal for outside!  Here is the finished result which is big enough for 3 kids and a mummy!  The kids absolutely love it and that includes the boys who after initially poo-pooing the princess play tent have now partaken in numerous teddy bear picnics and several sleepovers!  The only negative that I can think of is that it doesn't come with a ground sheet.   It is priced at £74.99 and compared to other playhouses is well made and sturdy.  It also have doors and windows that can be secured with velcro so easy enough for little hands to get to grips with.

Overall, I would highly recommend the fairy pricess play tent as not only is it well made and sturdy, it will stand the test of time which in my opinion, speaks volumes!

Peace and Love

S.A.M xx








Wednesday, 7 December 2011

Fighting at the Nativity Play

What is *EARTH* is going on people?!!

I have just got back from the upper school nativity play and I was gob smacked to see that the queue to get in was snaking back around the block.  I had to drop the boy at the front where I casually asked "Wow, you must have been here since school finished" to which a mum replied "just over an hour".  

JUST OVER AN HOUR?!! Are you kidding me?!

You have stood, in the freezing cold, just so you can get a seat at the front?!  

Then, the church doors open and people are positively *SPRINTING* to get to a front pew? 

I was ever so proud of my boy (a King) and of course, whilst it would be nice to be at the front, it is not the be all and end all.  It's all about being there to support the kids surely?!  So long as they know you are there, watching and supporting them, then that surely is the main thing?!

To make matters worse a mum then said (quite loudly) my son has a STAR role you know.


Grrrr..

It was a lovely service, all the kids did a fabulous job and the head was incredible in her praise and support for the church but it saddened me to see this need/competition to have prime spot.   

I didn't get any photos (too far away) but I really enjoyed the whole performance and it will live in my memory forever.

Well done Sonny xxxx

Peace and Love

S.A.M xx

Super Amazing Mum Loves................Merci Maman - bespoke jewellery for your little lady and you!

This time last year I blogged about merci maman and how I was utterly in love with their bespoke jewellery. The lovely Beatrice and I are on the same "businesswoman" circuit and often find ourselves stopping for a chat and a gossip.  We met last week and I was delighted to see how the range (and Beatrice who is now expecting her 4th bebe!) has expanded.

I have worn my lariat every day since buying it last year and the children all know what "heart" belongs to them.  I get comments all the time about the uniqueness of the necklace, especially as I chose to have the kids nicknames on one side and their real names on the other.


The new range is so lovely and what appeals to me is that it is all to your design.  You choose what you want on the pendant, and the girls do the rest!  Pixie was kindly sent a Liberty Print Bias Bracelet with her real name on one side and "Pixie" on the other.  She absolutely adored it and in her words "me just like you  mummy with my heart".  It's beautifully made and of course, a one off.   Equally, a liberty print is iconic as well as timeless and far prettier than anything you would find on the high street.





Those beautiful girls at Merci Maman are offering readers of this blog a 10% discount on all orders placed before the 17th December 2011.  To qualify, all you need to do is add superamazingmum into the checkout to receive your discount, but remember, you only have until the 17th to do this!

Bon Chance!

Peace and Love

S.A.M xx