Time to doll yourself up, leisurely browse the shops, do your hair and make yourself feel gorgeous probably seems like a distant memory.  There are mums out there who somehow manage to look effortlessly stylish with perfectly manicured nails matching their immaculate outfit but for most mums it doesn’t seem to happen that way. Jeans and a top are the easy option, although perhaps not the option that makes you feel like a hot mamma!

Looking good doesn’t have to be a chore, another task in the never-ending ‘to do list’ each day nor does it have to be a thing of the past. Becoming a mum doesn’t mean automatic dress sense loss; it just needs a bit of coaxing out from its hiding place. Looking good can be effortless just as long as you own a few essential items. All you need to do is follow these mum friendly fashion tips.

Reconnect with your style; slowly work towards updating your wardrobe to project the look you want to achieve. Clearing out your wardrobe is a great place to start. Only keep what you feel good in and build on that! It’s that easy!!

Whether it be a tracksuit or a summer dress, if you feel good you look good.

A good pair of jeans. A well-fitting pair of jeans that flatter your shape are an essential item in your wardrobe. Stretch jeans are easy to move in, practical and look great with simple bright tops or a nice shirt. If you find a style of jeans you like, buy a few pairs in different shades. This season it’s all about colour, and they form the basis of a good wardrobe.

 A dress is a must-have. Dresses are so versatile, easy to wear and feminine! Black dresses are fundamental for a sexy wardrobe and make you look effortlessly stylish. It doesn’t have to be a little black dress although owning one of those will make you feel like a hot mamma! You can find some great options at OD’s Designer Clothing.

As soon as you slip it on you’ll feel good. They go with flats, wedges or heels, can be worn just as they are or accessorised up. This is an ESSENTIAL.

Shoes. A chic pair of flats can dress up a simple outfit. You don’t have to be wearing glamorous high heels to look elegant and stylish. Shoes can also be easily matched up with accessories making it look like you made a real effort! If it’s time you’re worried about, the wonderful world of online shopping can be done once the kiddies are settled!

 Accessories also make an outfit. Now, with little ones avoiding long dangly earrings may be best but belts, bracelets, rings or a simple necklace jazz up simple, comfortable yet flattering clothing. All can be bought cheaply and withstand child’s rough play.

Nice plain tops. Black is always versatile, doesn’t get dirty too easily and can be worn in many variations. Colourful shades like red, navy or olive are fun, bringing positivity to your wardrobe.

 A stylish bag big enough to fit all the things you need for the kiddies while adding to your look adds undeniable style. 

Know what it is you like about your body and flaunt that bit!

To sum up, owning a few, well-fitting essentials that make you feel GOOD, that can be dressed up with simple accessories is totally achievable. You’ll find that wearing nice clothes and making that tiny bit of fuss-free effort is worth it. Time and money are common worries but browsing the internet for dresses and other essentials on ASOS is not time-consuming or costly.  You are still that attractive woman you felt you were pre-children, you just need to reconnect with her. This is largely achieved by dressing well, which makes you feel good. It is as simple as that!

 

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Cast your mind back merely two decades ago and the thought of children sitting in front of screens would send shivers down any mother’s spine. The good old days when too much TV would set your eyes square and kill your brain cells! We all laugh, but mum was probably right all along.

Don’t tell her.

I’m certainly not about to throw it all out there and ban screens from my household. I value my sanity and, let’s be honest, ‘100 per cent screen-free’ is one heck of a claim in the 21st century.

That said, instead of preaching on and perhaps judging other households who do have a lot of screentime, it would be beneficial if we all simply remembered how great things can be if you just turn off the phone/tablet/tele/laptop/games console [delete as required] for a short while and enjoy being outdoors. Or just being.

Just being.

Christmas is a fabulous time to encourage children to switch off the screen and spend time doing other stuff. Gifting outdoorsy items such as skates, scooters, and skateboards, for example, is exciting and they’ll want to get out there to play with the friends.

Rather than creating rules and regulations for screen time, how about we just make the other stuff just as fun so it appeals to our kids, tweens, and teens.

Mind-blowing, I know.

As well as reducing the amount of time spent on YouTube, Fortnite, and [enter your tech nemesis here], it’s more about kids reaping the rewards of outdoor play. Health wise, fresh air improves their blood pressure and heart rate, they’re running around, exercising, working their body, increasing the oxygen flow in their blood. It’s all good.

But there’s more to it than that. Sure, they’re not sat still indoors, scoffing, sweets. Thumbs up. Really, though, outdoor play is about developing skills, learning independence, creatively spending time. Seeing friends, enhancing social skills, improving overall wellbeing as little human creatures who very much need and enjoy spending time with other little human creatures.

We know enjoyment of exercise and social skills are important long-term. We have that knowledge nowadays. We’re privileged in that way. With that in mind, as parents, let’s get nostalgic and make playing outdoors as appealing as it was, way back when.

 

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I’d say the secret’s out – not that it’s ever really been much of one anyway – talking money is a yawn-fest. Trying to figure out where’s best to place your hard-earned moolah can be such a chore.

Northernmum: Money

Different banks, different financial advisors, different advice. And why is it that when it comes to the important stuff, such as investing, Google is not your friend. It just makes matters worse. Same goes for general illnesses and childhood rashes, but that’s another blog post for another day. Parents know.

Top form adulting with ISAs

Yet, as much as we loath sitting down and getting our finances straight, investing is pretty vital. Some would say more so once you have a family, children, of your own. When little humans are depending on you, really, putting money aside to ensure you keep things ticking along nicely is a must.

What are the biggies? Well, if your adulting is on top form, I’d say ISAs and personalised investment accounts are certainly handy. Where else in the world can you stash you cash tax-free? The government kindly, believe it or not, allow us to save up to £20,000 a year, away from the grabbing hands of the tax man.

So use it. Or lose it. Corny, right? But true. Sorry.

Set up an account and a standing order and just hamster some numbers away for a rainy day. How many times have you had to turn to a credit card or eat into your overdraft to fix the car, replace the washer, fork out on vet bills? ISAs save the day in emergencies, and for smashing those long-term savings goals.

Who knows what’s around the corner?

Putting small amounts regularly, consistently, into savings can give you peace of mind that whatever path your children choose to take. Whether you help with uni fees, live their around-the-world trip vicariously through your investment account, or support them in buying their first home. There’s no better feeling than helping your children live their best life.

And for you? When the little ones have left the nest, having a hefty, reliable pension fund can mean there’s money aside for you to enjoy the little luxuries in life. Be a lady who lunches. Become a member of the theatre. Book that transatlantic cruise. The world is your oyster.

40 is the new 20? Pah, set your sights high. I’m aiming for 60.

 

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At times kids can say the funniest things, and at other times they can increase my stress level to the point that I think my hair may fall out!

Luckily, and mainly so I don’t have to to check out hair transplant costs, one seems to balance out the other and my sanity remains.

Just…..

This week has been special, work has been at an all time high.  My clients are all amazing, but they have all wanted extra this week and the stress has been intense.

Not helped by the fact that my youngest threw up in the school loo on Wednesday, left it as proof, and earned herself two days off school sick.

Free Activities

She has binge watched Netflix  – every day.

This week, my son lost his phone three times, his packed lunch twice, one school shoe, two tops and my patience many times over….

But luckily my daughter made me howl with the following comment.

To set the scene…

We were driving past the local football stadium, when my eldest child said with a tone of surprise.

I’ve just realised, most football clubs have names that reference the town in which they are based…..

My son, looked at her, with an expression that said  – you did not just say that….

But that was not the only gem to fall from her lips at that time.

She instantly followed up with…

Except Arsenal and Chelsea…..strange how they are different.

She has options in two years…. Lets hope she leaves geography alone

 

Gotta love kids!

 

 

 

 

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If you are like most people, you probably find that your transport or getting around costs you a lot more in general than you would want it to. There can be so many ways in which your car can ruin you financially, and often it’s not until it’s too late that you begin to notice just how it has done so. However, with more of an awareness of what is going on here, as well as the ability to make some real choice for change, we can hope to make it so that our cars do not bankrupt us any longer. This means we can then start to live in a more profitable and ennobled way, and stop throwing money away. Let’s’ take a look at how we can make it so that our cars do not rui us financially.

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Drive Efficiently

If you have never learned how to drive efficiently, this is something you might want to look into. The truth is that you can drive so that you are using a little fuel as possible, and it is pretty easy to do once you know what you are doing. The most important thing is to make sure that you keep acceleration to a minimum. This might sound obvious, but it means both slowing down the rate of acceleration and doing it less often. Do both of these for better results. However, you also need to limit braking, as this too costs money in the long run. You should also make sure that you’re changing gear at the right time, around two and a half thousand revs usually, and that you take the shortest route everywhere. All of this will add up to make a considerable difference to how much your fuel is costing you.

Shop Around For Insurance

There is no need to spend more than necessary on insurance, and yet so many people get caught up in poor policies which trap them in for a long time paying far too much and receiving far too little for it. The only thing to really do her is to make sure that you are shopping around as best as possible. The more you shop around, the better off you will be financially in the long run. If you take a look at sites like cheapautoinsurance.co.uk you will see how you can hosp to find some cheap car insurance without too much hassle – and this alone will vastly improve the amount of money you are having to part with to drive your car. Shop around and find yourself the best deal possible – there is no reason not to.

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Only Drive When Necessary

Finally, make sure  that you are only driving when it is really necessary. This way, you will expect to save on fuel, but you will also be able to make it less likely and less common that you need to go to the mechanic or have any work done. A long as you only drive when you need to, you will make a huge difference.

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