10 Gift Ideas for Baby's First Christmas | Kelly Pendragon

Buying presents for your baby's first Christmas can be hard. What do you get for someone who is too little to understand what Christmas is? My baby will be 4 and a half months by Christmas day and I've found it quite difficult to find age-appropriate presents as he already has quite a few toys and all of the baby essentials he needs at his age. I have found a few gift suggestions for your baby's first Christmas and tried to aim at the whole range from Birth to 1 year old. I've also tried to consider different budgets, as I completely understand times can be hard when you have a new baby. Hopefully you will find some inspiration somewhere in my list!

Baby Einstein Rhythm of the Reef Prop Pillow
Age Range: Suitable from Birth
Price: £14.99
View Here at Smyths Toys 

VTech First Steps Baby Walker
Age Range: 6 months+
Price: £29.99
View Here at Argos
Also available in pink, 3x AA batteries required (not included)

Fisher Price Bright Beats Dance and Move BeatBo
Age Range: 9 months+
Price: £23.99
View Here at Very
Requires 4x AA batteries (not included), Can also purchase in pink (BeatBelle) for £32.24

Vtech Peek and Play Turtle
Age Range: 3 months+
Price: £15.97
View Here at John Lewis
Uses 2x AAA batteries (included)
Wooden Tiger Trike
Age Range: 12 months - 6 years
Price: £36.00
View Here at ELC

Playgro Puppy Gift Pack
Age Range: suitable from birth
Price: £16.00
View Here at Amazon
VTech My 1st Lion Rattle
Age Range: 3-18 months
Price: £10.00
View Here at The Entertainer
My 3 month old son has one of these already, and absolutely loves it!

Personalised Wooden Walker with Blocks
Age Range: up to 12+
Price: £60.00
View Here at My 1st Years
Free personalisation included

Sensory Ball Pit
Age Range: 6-36 months
Price: £30.00
View here at Mothercare
The Very Hungry Caterpillar Developmental Caterpillar
Age Range: suitable from birth
Price: £9.95
View here on Dunelm

Will you be purchasing any of these items for your little one for Christmas? Feel free to leave more gift suggestions in the comments section below, I'd love to hear them!

My Journey To Motherhood- Perfect Pregnancy, Straightforward Birth, & Happy Baby

Back in December 2017 my partner and I found out that we were going to have a baby! Since the day I found out I intended on kickstarting my blog again to write about my journey through pregnancy, but due to having such a hectic life it didn't happen. Now my baby is 10 weeks old and I think it's the perfect time to share with you my experiences through pregnancy, birth, and life as a first time mum with a newborn.

I feel like since day one I've been so lucky with my pregnancy. I never suffered from any morning sickness, I had no swellings, and up until the last couple of weeks I managed to remain on my feet and working. I did go off Bisto gravy (for some reason that was the only brand that made me feel sick!), I hated the smell of the ActiFry cooking, I had an insane craving for one particular brand of sausage roll, and all I wanted was to pig out on KFC!
To be quite honest I didn't actually believe I was pregnant at first. I'd had three positive tests, but for some reason, I still didn't feel like I could be pregnant! I actually had this silly fear in the back of my mind that I'd go to my first scan and there would be nothing there.
My first scan at 12 weeks
After I'd had my first scan it all started to sink in, although with having no symptoms of pregnancy it did still feel a little surreal to me. I started to feel little flutters at about 18 weeks pregnant, which turned into proper kicks within a month. The feeling of a baby kicking inside was the strangest thing I'd ever felt. There isn't really a way I could describe it other than saying it feels like a tiny human kicking your insides!
My second scan at 20 weeks
By my 20 week scan, the little blob on the screen was clearly shaped like a baby. My partner and I decided we wanted to find out the gender and were informed we were having a boy! By this point, I was nervous and excited to see what my little one would look like.
From 20 weeks to birth seemed to go by so quickly. I worked up until 3 weeks before my due date, but my baby decided he wanted to be with us early so I was only off for a week and a half before I gave birth.
I'm not going into too much detail about my birth as it all seemed to go by in a flash, but 10 days before his due date I sat down to have a sandwich for my lunch and my waters broke with no sign of labour. I had to be induced the next day due to labour not starting on its own. Once they had induced me my labour didn't seem to last for too long. I was due up to the labour ward at 8pm but my pains were too intense, so after having a lovely bubble bath in the hospital and them giving me nothing but paracetamol for pain relief they sent me up at 7pm. Once I was up there they had to monitor the baby for half an hour before they could give me pain relief, all the while I was in the most intense pain I'd ever felt. They decided for the first time they would check how far dilated I was only to find I was already 8cm. It was at this point they offered me gas and air which I gladly accepted! The gas and air seemed to make everything go by like a blur, but I do remember most of the experience. I definitely vomited all over a student nurse, and struggled to push for a while, but eventually at 11:28pm on 7th August 2018 my son was born.

my baby boy born 7th August, 7lbs 7oz
My son and I had to remain in the hospital for a painstaking 4 days due to him having a higher risk of infection which was a result of there being more than 24 hours between my waters breaking and him being born. Once we got home it felt a little bit like being thrown into the deep end. It's like everyone expects you to know exactly what you are doing once you get home with the baby. I will admit my motherly instincts did kick in fairly quickly and I felt comfortable with this little bundle of joy.
I like to think I'm a laid back mum, who doesn't stress too much about the silly things. I do get a bit stressy from time to time, but I tend to be more of a happy person. The day I was let out of hospital I went shopping at my local supermarket like it was my normal average day. Having a baby didn't mean I couldn't still live a normal life. I quickly got into a routine with my little one and the last 10 weeks have been fantastic for me.
My son seems to be a happy baby all around. From birth he would only wake up once a night, and now at 10 weeks old, he sleeps all the way through from about 10pm-6 or 7am. He seems to be developing really well too- he has always been able to lift his own head and move it around. I remember the midwives saying he shouldn't be able to do that yet. He can hold his body weight on his legs, can sit up with some assistance, he can hold his head up, and he is starting to get a bit of hand-eye coordination.
my son at 10 weeks old
Becoming a mother has been the best thing I've ever done and I'm looking forward to blogging about my experiences as a mother and hopefully giving advice to anyone who needs it!

Learning To Drive and Getting My First Car

A week and a half ago Justin (my boyfriend) and I had a particular conversation for possibly the thirtieth time since we've been together- Should I learn how to drive? I have the money available, I have the determination, so why not? A day later I booked my theory test and ten driving lessons with a wonderful instructor whom I've known for many years of my life. The instructor happens to be the same person who taught my brother how to drive, and he has highly recommended him to me. My first lesson isn't until Monday. I'm super excited to get behind the wheel for the first time ever, but also a little nervous about figuring out the coordination between gears, clutch, accelerating, braking, and paying attention to the road around me. I'm sure I'll be okay with it, I suppose it takes everyone a little while to get the hang of it at first. I've never been behind the wheel of anything before, so this is a completely blank canvas for me!
I have been studying hard for my theory test, and am feeling confident I'll be able to do it. I'm achieving high percentages and passing most of my mock tests. I have no reason to be worried, so I shouldn't panic during the real exam. I have my fingers (and toes) crossed tightly! I still have a couple of weeks to get more practice in for my theory test, and I'm taking mock tests in literally every spare minute I have.
When I decided I was going to learn how to drive, Justin said he would purchase me my first car, but we wouldn't rush into anything as I won't be able to drive my own car until I've had a few lessons with an instructor. Well, guess who bought me my first car only four days later!
My dad has been going to a car auction every week as he is looking for a new motor, and Justin has been joining him and loves seeing all the cars going through for bargain prices. When looking at the upcoming cars for that week he noticed a particular car that he liked the look of, and even the number plate stood out to us both. We did some insurance checks and it all seemed good- as long as it went for the right price and seemed in good condition.
The night of the auction Justin came home and seemed a little odd. He was distant with me, not telling me about anything that had gone through the auction like he usually would. I eventually sat down and he passed me the auction sheet to look at what sold and for how much. I asked him about a few different cars and he explained they were too much or in bad condition. Then I reached this one particular car that we said we wanted if it went for the right price.
I had a bit of a moan at him "Why didn't you get it if it sold that cheap?" "What was wrong with it?!" he shrugged at me but looked shifty. Then he blurted out "That's because it's yours!"
I thought he was joking at first, I was so excited and couldn't believe it.
The next day we collected my first car and I fell totally in love with it, it's such a gorgeous colour and a really nice car. Fair enough it was dirty, but nothing a full valet couldn't fix.
I'm looking forward to getting behind the wheel of my own little car!
Here is a picture of my little orange Fiat Grande Punto (yes, it's orange! It looks a bit red in the pictures though)
It needed a couple of things buying for it- a new washer pump, some mats, paint touch up, stain remover for the seats. All really cheap things and none of them an issue.
I do highly recommend the stain remover I used. It was called CarPlan Stain Valet and it comes in a can with a brush attached to the top. My passenger seat had a huge ground-in stain on it, but after a thorough scrub with this stain remover, it came right off! The seats look brand new after one go-over with this product. The can was 300ml for £4 and after doing all of my seats there was still over half a can left.

It has always been my dream to learn how to drive, but something has kept me from doing it. Mainly that I've never had enough money aside to learn to drive and buy a car. I'm so glad I finally have a man in my life who helps me chase my dreams and does everything in his power to make them a reality. I have my car- now it's all up to me to learn to drive and pass those tests!

10 Little Things That Make Me Happy #Tag

I have been tagged by the blogger Reclusive Fox to take part in the '10 little things that make me happy' tag. I do find it important to think about the little things, those parts of life that you may not dwell on in the moment, but looking back they fill you with so much joy. As I mentioned in my previous post, sometimes you have to take a step back and look at life from a wider angle. This tag seems like a perfect opportunity to pause for a moment and think about those little things in life that make you happy.

1. Seaside sunrises and sunsets- Until last year I'd never seen a sunrise on the beach before. When I went on holiday in Wales, Justin and I woke up stupidly early and headed out onto the beach to watch the sun come up. It was one of the most beautiful things I'd ever witnessed, and I even got to see the fishing boats being towed into the sea by a tractor.

2. Fireworks- I think fireworks are lovely to watch, but it's even better when it brings the family together. Last year we had our own little display for the first time in years, and it was lovely to be spending time together having a good laugh.

3. Kitty cuddles- My favourite animal ever is a cat, they are so freaking adorable! I have two of my own, Billy (1-year-old) and Daisy (6 months), and I love having cuddles with them both. Billy is the more cuddly of the two- laying on top of me first thing in the morning purring in my face.

4. Warm sunny days- Ask anyone who knows me well, and they will know warm sunny days are what I live for. I'm the sort of person that feels miserable when the weather is bad and feels like I'm in paradise whenever the sun is shining.

5. Listening to music- I don't go a single day without listening to music. There's nothing more enjoyable than turning up a good tune really loud!

6. Binge-watching TV shows- I don't get to do this so often anymore, but I love watching shows on Netflix, Prime, TV, etc. Right now some of my recommendations are- Dark Matter, Once Upon a Time, iZombie, and The 100. feel free to check them out! 

7. Walks through the countryside- I always fill with joy when having long walks through the countryside. It's a nice way to spend time with Justin and it doesn't cost a penny! We both enjoy doing photography, so it gives us something that brings us closer together. 

8. Spontaneous trips- Due to Justin and I working so much we don't get to do this often, but it's awesome to wake up in the morning and decide to go on a last minute trip somewhere. With me, the trips are usually to Nottingham or Skegness as they are two of my favourite places to be. 

9. Technology- I'm an absolute geek when it comes to technology! Laptops, cameras, stereo systems, gaming consoles, headphones, mobile phones, etc. I love them all! Wherever I go I always enjoy looking at new technology, and occasionally purchasing it. 

10. Steam Trains- Okay, so this one may seem a bit random, but seeing steam trains make me so happy! I've always had an interest in trains, but steam trains, in particular, have a special place in my heart. I've travelled on steam trains a few times on holiday in Somerset on the West Somerset Railway and it's the most magical experience.

I'd love to keep this tag going, so I've decided to tag some bloggers to take part themselves. Feel free to take part even if I don't tag you! 

Getting Over the Worlds Longest Writer's Block

Back in 2015, I used to write on my blog on a regular basis, and I loved it! Writing has always been one of my favourite hobbies, and having a blog where I can freely write all my thoughts is wonderful. However, I seem to have hit a writer's block that never wants to end. Last year I barely posted anything after re-starting my life following a breakup, but when 2017 started I promised myself I would get back into writing on my blog once again. However, it doesn't seem as easy as it may have sounded in my head. In January I re-vamped and re-launched my blog, but not long after this, my boyfriend became very ill, which caused me to stop posting anything on here. And since then I never got back into it like I expected I would.
My life has been full of adventures, plans for the future, fun days and many thoughts. All things I could have been writing about, but haven't. I've not been taking my laptop out with me like I usually would as it is in need of a new battery which will cost me £200, and when I'm piling into my savings account for my future, it's not so easy to splash out that much money on something that isn't 'essential'. My laptop isn't the only reason I've not been writing, my life has sort of felt like it's been on overdrive the whole time. Everything has been whizzing past at the speed of light and each day has blurred into the next. I'm not saying this in a bad way, as I've had some really amazing days, but on a typical work day, I don't tend to do as much as I used to. I don't really find the time to sit alone with my thoughts long enough to write those thoughts down into a blog. I work and sleep day after day and that's all that seems to happen. Then comes the 'weekend' (my weekend is Sunday and Monday rather than Saturday and Sunday) where both days always seem so busy that it doesn't feel like I've had any time off.
I'm at the point now where I feel like I have to press pause, step back for a moment, and appreciate what is actually going on in my life. Each day needs to be individual and I must remember it for unique reasons. Perhaps I should start writing down something good that has happened to me each day to remind me that it's not just another piece of the blurry puzzle, its a day- something individual that needs to be loved for the right reasons, not added to the pile of 'just another day'.
This blog is all about my life, and I can't write about it if I have nothing to say. I'm not saying things are boring right now because they aren't. I'm loving every minute of my life, but I need to appreciate it all a little more.
I have a long list of things to look forward to in the future, things I never thought I'd do, but they will happen within the next few years. So in the meantime, I just want to share things a bit at a time so you can understand my feelings in the lead-up to my future.
I've always focused on writing long posts trying to cover as much as I can, but I might start doing some smaller posts just to get me back into blogging. I think at this point I need to take it a step at a time and not worry about what other people think about me or my life.
I have some post ideas to write up soon, but I think I need to make this blog more personal in the meantime.
Do you ever feel like your life is in fast-forward? If you do, how do you slow things down?
Kelly x

Monthly Competition Wins

I decided I would enter a few competitions here and there over the last month, and it seems to have paid off as I've won a couple of really nice things! I enjoy spending a little time each day entering a few comps on facebook, twitter, blogs, and other websites. It doesn't take much to do as long as you have an email address, phone number, facebook, twitter, and other social media's in order to enter. Here are some of the things I've won so far since December:

£20 Halfords Voucher (Castrol UK on Facebook)
I won this in a little competition over on Castrol UK's Facebook page where they posted a picture with loads of tiny cartoon cars & you had to guess or count the number of cars in the picture. I was one of a number of people who guessed correctly and won £20 to spend at Halfords. I did look in my local store and couldn't find anything I wanted, so I've given this one to my dad.

Pugs & Kisses Mug (My Lovely Stuff UK)

As many people in my life know, I adore pugs with a passion, so this is a gorgeous little win for me! It is a bone china cappuccino mug and saucer. I'm not so big on coffee, so I'll be using this for my hot chocolates and mochas.

Ted Baker Gift Set (iwon-iwon)

This is a lovely set for men, I'm not sure yet if I'm going to let my boyfriend have this or give it to someone as a gift for Christmas. I'll let him have a smell of it and see if he likes it before deciding. This was actually my first win in December and I was so excited when it arrived, I'm not normally very lucky with competitions.

Totes Slippers & Bed Socks (Willow Lane Blog) 
With the weather getting colder by the day I was pleased to find out I'd won some warm slippers and fluffy socks. I got a choice of size- small, medium, or large for the slippers. I have fairly big feet so I opted for a large, which fits size 7-8. The prize is worth nearly £30 and I love it so much! I think this is probably my favourite win so far, especially as I needed some new fluffy socks.

Christmas Card (Katzenworld)

Anchor Trumpety Elephant (Unknown)
I actually have no idea where this one came from! I don't remember entering to win one of these, and I've never entered an Anchor competition, but it's really cute so I'm happy to have it. For anyone who's seen the advert you'll know how irritating this little cutie can be, because it makes the noise from the ad! 

I have also won a Billy Connolly High Horse Tour DVD from Flickering Myth and 10 free cards with free P&P from Choosey worth nearly £40.

I hope you've enjoyed seeing some of my wins from the past month. I've not been so lucky this month yet. I think my luck was mainly over the Christmas period with there being so many competitions going on! Do you like entering competitions? Let me know what you've won in the comments!

What I Got For Christmas 2016

I know it may be a little late for a 'What I got for Christmas' post, but I've been a little too busy to write this one up, with wanting to write about my goals for this year along with working 30 hour weeks and having a busy lifestyle. I decided not to include every single little present in this post or it would get a bit tedious, so I'm just showing a few of my favourites from Christmas 2016!
My first and main present was an iPad Mini 4 32GB. I used to have an iPad Mini 3, and I always missed having it around. I did purchase a couple of different Android tablets last year but none of them faired up to the iPad. So this year I decided to put my Christmas money from my family together with some of my own money to finally purchase myself the new iPad.
I purchased it from Currys PC World and they happened to have a discount of £20 off any iPad on the day I went in, so I bought myself a fancy £20 Targus smart case to go with it. The case doubles up as a stand and it locks and unlocks the screen as you open and close it.

The next thing I received was 'Ari' by Ariana Grande perfume. I remember before Christmas going around shops smelling perfumes and aftershaves with Justin and this was by far my favourite scent. For the rest of the day, I kept commenting on how amazing the scent was and he must have remembered that it was my favourite as he bought it for me. The fragrance is described as sparkling fruits with floral undertones and a hint of marshmallow. I think I'd pretty much agree with this description and it's officially my favourite ever perfume.

Next was this Blooming Gorgeous duo- a set of bath fizzers and a double pack of lotion. I absolutely adore all kinds of floral smelling bath products like bath bombs, salts, bubble bath; anything to relax in the tub.  I've not actually used either of the products yet so I can't comment on what they are like, but the packaging is beautiful and I really look forward to using them.

I also received this super cute pug puppy cushion! I think anyone who knows me properly is very well aware that I adore pugs and I'd love one of my own someday, but until that day I can look at this little cutie in my living room.

This Pretty & Witty gift set is absolutely adorable, but what makes it more special to me is that the little cat whose face is plastered all over the set looks just like my own kitten, Billy. The sets contain body butter, lip balm, body spray, bubble bath and shower gel. All the items have different scents e.g. the body wash smells like bubblegum and the body spray smells like strawberries.

Christmas isn't complete without receiving at least one book! I've not actually seen Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them yet, and with this being the screenplay I'm super tempted to wait until I've seen the movie before reading this. I've always been a Harry Potter nerd for as long as I can remember, I grew up reading the books and watching the films and remember the excitement of a new book coming out. I'm not quite as excited to read this one as I was to read the others because I personally feel that JK Rowling is making up more and more stories and sidelines for the sake of it. But being a diehard Potter nerd I have to read the book, for curiosity's sake.

I'm forever losing lip balms and I tend to like having lots of different ones so I can keep one in each bag and pocket just in case I end up forgetting to bring one with me. I have seen these Coca-Cola inspired 'Lip Smacker' before in shops and it's something I've always wanted for the novelty of it. This year I received a little gift set containing Coca-Cola, Sprite, Fanta and Coca-Cola vanilla. So far I've only tried the classic Coke flavour and it does actually taste like the cola, except with a very plastic after-taste.

As I mentioned above I absolutely love bath products, and that certainly includes bath salts! They are made by Joules and not only are the salts in the most gorgeous looking jar, but they also come with a really cute scoop for you to measure the perfect amount of bath salts. They smell very floral and are so relaxing when used with a bit of bubble bath (they go really well with the bubble bath from the Pretty & Witty set).

The last thing I'm going to mention in this post is a Yardley London English Rose gift set. This wasn't exactly a Christmas present, but Justin bought it for me in the Boxing Day sales. The set contains a body spray and a perfume, both have the scent of garden roses in the summer time. It wasn't expensive at full price, so I was very happy to have found this at half it's marked price. I'm hoping I'll be able to find this gift set again next year as I'd like to buy some for my friends.

That isn't everything I received for Christmas, but I don't want this blog post to go on forever! I hope you've enjoyed seeing what I got- as I know people are nosey and like to see these sorts of posts (I know I do!).
Feel free to let me know what you got for Christmas, I'd love to hear about it!