Do bloggers move house for freebies?


Very recently there has been a blog post that has got people bloggers all up in arms – all about whether bloggers have babies just to get freebies. I’m not going to link as we don’t want HIM to get the traffic do we? (Just search on twitter instead).

Anyyyyyway…. It got me to thinking, do bloggers move house just to get freebies?

I mean, I see LOTS of blogs reviewing homewares, some of them very expensive ones at that.

Before they even move (like about 64 times in the last 3 years like that Rachel over at Parenthood Highs and Lows) they must think, “Ooh I need to email this brand, and this brand, AND this one! Tell them I’m moving, give them my new address, and they might send me STUFF!”.

When we moved last year, the first brand I emailed was Wickes, hoping they might send me a paint tray and some brushes, and some paint, and some wallpaper… No such luck.

Next up was ALL of the carpet shops as we needed the whole of the upstairs doing, and the lounge, and maybe the garden too, and as it cost us the price of the van to move all our stuff, we couldn’t afford it. But no such luck.

We had to pay for them ourselves in the end. With real money. Couldn’t even get away with using the kids play money. That we bought with real money.

I’m such a failure at this blogging shizz, it seems. NO freebies when we moved. Zero. Zilch. Can you believe it?!

But then, is anything we review ever completely free? No, I don’t think it is.


Do bloggers move house for freebies?
This actually is not a freebie.


This post might contain fibs.
This post 
might be tongue in cheek, so you know, pinch of salt. 😉 

Moving on & new beginnings

Other than a random three or four posts over the last couple of weeks, you may or may not have noticed that I have been a bit AWOL from blogging (again – that’s twice this year!). The reason being – we moved house, and it has been a completely different lifestyle change for us.

We’ve moved into what was my in laws house; so we have gone from a small 2 bed flat in a town, surrounded by what I can only describe as ‘unsavoury’ neighbours who we have had endless problems with over the last year, to a large 3 bed house in the countryside, with lovely peaceful neighbours and fields!
We originally moved here to help care for my FiL with a terminal illness, and to basically take over the running of the house (and eventually the house altogether) as he just hasn’t been able to manage it by himself since my MiL passed away a couple of years ago. Unfortunately though, a week after we moved in he rapidly went downhill and was admitted to hospital. He was there for three days before he passed away peacefully. So, we’ve had that to contend with too and emotions have been rife with all of us.

Anyhow; as I said above, it is a totally different lifestyle change, for me & the boys anyway. Hubby grew up here so he is used to it, but going from being a town dweller to a country bumpkin has been major for me!
Just some of the changes that have been made for us:

  • we have gone from gas central heating and hot water at the flick of a switch, to having to light the woodburning boiler for it and keep it going. I actually had to learn how to light a fire, at the grand old age of 28…
  • we have gained a whole lot more space; for both living and the boys to play.
  • we have gone from a shared paved courtyard, to lots of land to upkeep and a proper garden for the boys to play in where I don’t have to constantly keep an eye on them.
  • we are no longer in an area with high speed cabled internet – that really is a major for me! (We had to wait two weeks for it to be installed hence the lack of posts).
  • we have completely different views rather than just houses at every angle. Farmer’s fields to the rear, and the river to the front.
  • the peacefulness and no drug smells! That’s the unsavoury neighbours I mentioned earlier…
  • we have to drive to the nearest shop when it was previously a 5 minute walk. It means money saving though as I don’t just spend for the sake of it!

As well as all of the above, we have also taken on a lot of DIY & remedial work so we have that ahead of us for the foreseeable future too. I have visions though of a – I would say quaint, but it’s quite grand, for me anyway – country house and I hope to bring them to life and share them with you.

I could write so much more on some of the things I have mentioned above but we would be here for hours, so I’m going to write some separate posts. I hope you’ll enjoy sharing our country living with us!


Have you undertaken any major lifestyle changes in the past?

Kids Don’t Come With a Manual | Book review & giveaway (CLOSED)

When I was pregnant with J I never read any ‘parenting’ books – there were just so many on the market and it was a bit overwhelming. I’d had lots of advice from friends, and I knew I had lots to go to for advice once he had arrived. I’d heard of lots of parenting ‘experts’ and their books though and there were many differing opinions on all of them – I decided that we’d just go with the flow and we’d get it, somehow!

When we came home from the hospital though I joked that I wish they’d sent us home with a manual – we had absolutely no clue between us and we kind of just muddled through for those first few weeks! (Doesn’t everyone?…) The truth is though, there is no one type of parenting manual fits all, as all of them are different (as are parents – our ‘styles’ are very different and we’re always rowing about how to deal with certain behaviours).

I posted a while ago about trouble we were having with J’s behaviour and it had led to quite an unhappy family life of which we have been ‘suffering’ for the past few months and we were trying absolutely everything to deal with it, but not much of it was working. When I heard and read about a new book on the market, Kids Don’t Come With A Manual, I thought that I may as well give it a shot – what did I have to lose?

This isn’t the usual “from birth-what babies should be doing-what you should be doing” kind of book. It’s more of a toolbox on various methods of dealing with challenging behaviour from toddler-hood onward. The authors of the book, Carole & Nadim, also don’t claim to be parenting experts, they have just drawn on their many years of experience and research of dealing with children, to put together this ‘manual’. There are seven chapters with various tools in each one; just a few of the chapters are ‘how to prevent power struggles and other issues’, ‘how to listen so children will want to talk’, and ‘how to talk so children will want to listen’.

Not all of the chapters apply to us right now but I dived straight in there and read it all as I thought I would then be prepared as & when those situations arise. Each chapter has a blurb of what the child may be thinking, then each tool has the voice of the strict parent (Nadim) and the voice of the all-heart parent (Carole) telling us how they each applied the tool and worked together for a more harmonious household. Some of the tools have already started working for us though I think some may take a little more time. For example using ‘Uh-Oh & time-Away’ instead of the ‘naughty step’, after only a couple of days J has been telling me before I ask, that he wants the door left open. Limited choices is a good one for us too and (mostly) it saves meltdowns. Some of the tools I found we had already been using, so really the book is just about picking & choosing tools that apply to you. There is a handy troubleshooting section at the back for quick reference too. The only thing I’ve found is that some tools are easier to remember how to use than others, but after using them a few times I suppose it wouldn’t be a problem (hence the handy troubleshooting section) – plus there are even pages at the end of each chapter to write your own notes.

Overall I would really recommend this book if you are encountering challenging behaviour. It is really down-to-earth and Carole & Nadim aren’t telling what you should be doing, more what you could be doing differently. For us, so far, it definitely shows to be a worthwhile investment of £12.99 for a happier family life.

If you fancy winning a copy for yourself, I’m happy to be able to offer one to one of my readers – just complete the Rafflecopter below!

I was sent this product free of charge to review. All thoughts & opinions are honest & my own.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Terms & conditions
Open to UK residents 18 & over.
Entries must be received by 11.59 pm on 26/04/2015.
The winner will be drawn randomly via Rafflecopter/ when the giveaway has ended and will be sent an email informing them they have won.
The winner has 28 days to respond to the email or a new winner will be drawn.
I will send the winner’s details on to the PR and the prize will be sent directly from the PR.

#VlogChallenge Week 3 – Books

As each week of the #vlogchallenge passes by, I’m becoming more confident – and I only had one outtake this week (I should start posting them shouldn’t I?)! There could’ve been more but I was pushed for time and I didn’t want to keep starting again, so be sure to expect lots of pauses and “erm”‘s!

It’s actually longer than 2 minutes this week as well. So here is my week 3 of the #vlogchallenge – Books: