Review – The Fisher Price Bright Beats Dance & Move BeatBo

Let’s dance. Let’s sing. Let’s learn to count! Yes, the new Fisher Price Bright Beats Dance & Move BeatBo does all this. It’s so much fun!

I don’t know about you, but I can get really bored of children’s toys. Lacie doesn’t, but I do, so when the postman knocked on the door with this big box of entertainment, I couldn’t wait to crack it open. Lacie was asleep, so I literarily had to sit on my hands!

The Fisher Price BeatBo is the latest educational toy from Fisher Price, and aimed at toddlers aged 9-36 months. It offers three incredible modes to play and learn for little people: Dance ’n Move, Learning & Games, and Customised Sing-Along.

Screen Shot 2015-08-31 at 13.25.15

We played with our fun looking robot as soon as she woke, and what with it being a dull and rainy day, we kept the lights off and took full advantage of the flashing lights on its large, multi-colour LED grid tummy.

First of all, we explored the musical  button on his foot – the first button of three. We had a ‘dance party’ were we clapped to his instructions, and jumped up and glided. Lacie did the moves, whilst the BeatBo shook his head from side to side – and wiggled. Very funny! She found it hilarious.

Screen Shot 2015-08-31 at 13.27.56

Next we played with the ‘123’ button and sang about colours and the ABC. So far the ABC dance has to be my favourite. It’s really catchy and Lacie has already grasped the first verse. The only thing I hate has to be the fact that I wake up in the night singing the song. These baby songs are so catchy – ahhh!

You can also press BeatBo’s tummy for more catchy tunes and learning phrases and record your own phrase that the baby toy then remix’s into his favourite song. A great way to repeat a word or phase that you’re little one is trying to learn without sounding like an obsessed mother – or a broken record!

Screen Shot 2015-08-31 at 13.29.52

So in more detail:

BeatBo’s fun and energising music encourages baby to move around.

By pressing his tummy, or one of the buttons on his feet you can play learning songs and games, which introduces your child to ABCs, colours, counting and instructions like jumping, clapping and ‘shaking it up’.

The music, songs, phrases, lights and bright colours helps strengthen your child’s gross and fine motor skills, which aslo help give baby’s senses a boost.

and

the different songs, phases and beats that the BeatBo plays each time you press a button encourages curiosity and discovery. There are around 50 phases all in all – I’m not bored yet!

Fisher Price Space Saver Jumperoo

Every parent I know raves about it. It keeps their child occupied for hours, it gives their child time on their feet, allowing them to be really active without getting into trouble and the lights and sounds keep them entertained and engrossed as they find new colours, hear new sounds and find things to spin and move back and forth.

Lacie has been a huge fan of the Fisher Price Jumperoo for months – me too, but I do hate how much room it takes up and that I have to keep it out as I can’t be bothered to take it apart and put it in the cupboard every time she doesn’t want to use it.

fisher price

Lucky for me, I got my hands on the new Space Saver Jumperoo, and despite the fact that it’s much smaller and folds away, she still loves it just as much and it still keeps her entertained and happy while I make the dinner. Yes, she is walking now, but she loves hanging onto my legs when I’m cooking dinner, which I find so dangerous – and a tad annoying! It holds children up to 25lbs, she is just hit 19, which means we still have some growing room despite the fact that she is 12 months.

The first advantage of the new model is that it just snaps together.  No tools required – everything just clips together making the install quite easy. The second advantage is that it folds away. Just remove the toy bar (which can then be stored safely under the seat), drop the seat down and move the back bar forward, and voila.

fisher price

fp2

So what happens when you want to use it again? Well, it’s simple. You just lift the seat up, the pull the front out, then clip the toy bar back on. Nifty!

fp

Fisher-Price Smart Stages Train

The new Fisher-Price Smart Stages Train couldn’t have come at a better time for Lacie –  she’s on the move big time, and likes nothing more than chasing things – especially the hoover!

The train is aimed at babies six to 18 months – but even older kids seem to like it. My nephew for instance, is three and he plays with it on the stage 3 setting, which when you press the different shaped buttons it tells you to do different things, like jump like a frog or spin round and round like the wheels. It’s so entertaining to watch.

The train itself comes as three separate sections – a train and two carriages – with three animal figures, puppy, monkey and froggy who ride on board. The animals all rattle and are the perfect size for little hands – and mouths – she chews anything at the moment!

The best feature of the train is that you can set it to move. You press the chimney down, and then the motorised train toots off as it sings one of its sing-along songs – it’s actually not annoying in the slightest. The songs are catchy and cute!
Lacie got it straight away and knows exactly how to make it go forward, which is lovely to see. She grabs the chimney and gives it a bash as it flashes and goes forward.

Screen Shot 2014-10-10 at 17.53.05

The train also boosts different shaped buttons to help introduce colours and numbers. There are also three stages of play – each activated by sliding a switch. This enables the train to grow with your baby and has something for every stage; Stage 1 is aimed at babies six months plus, stage 2, 12 months plus and stage 3, 18 months plus. Each stage is designed to keep Lacie amused and learning, as it sings the alphabet, counts from 1-10 and sings about the colours of the rainbow.

Screen Shot 2014-10-10 at 17.54.00

The Smart Stages Train definitely encourages curiosity and gives plenty of stimulation; from the twisting wheels, to the sliding ladybug, the ABC spinner, the number roller and the clacker beads, Lacie finds something new to play with every time she picks it up.

I have a feeling this train is here to stay! Send batteries….

RRP £34.99; www.argos.co.uk

Fisher-Price Discover Your Way

As you will know from previous posts, me  & Lacie are huge fans of Fisher-Price. She’s had toys from them right from the word go, which have helped her develop and have kept her entertained no matter what age.

Now the leading infant and pre-school brand, has launched ‘Discover Your Way’, a celebration of all the wonderful and different ways that children like to play helping them to develop happily at their own natural pace.

The leading toy company knows that children are happiest developing at their own natural pace, creating products perfectly designed to feed children’s natural curiosity, encourage exploration, stimulate imagination and facilitate discovery through play, to help babies learn and grow their way – that’s what I love about Fisher-Price toys, they evolve with your baby and at their own pace!
I love how I can leave Lacie on her own to play sometimes whilst I make the dinner or heat her bottles – I’m always so surprised by how engrossed she is in just one toy and how much she already knows instinctively about how it works and what things to press and pull. These babies are too clever!

Take the Laugh & Learn® Puppy’s Smart Stages for instance. The 50+ sing-along songs, tunes & phrases helps Lacie pick up new words, while the sounds help spark her curiosity. The motorized train also encourages her to crawl-along after the train (she is soooo nearly there!) and the slider ladybug, ABC spinner, number roller and clacker beads keeps her hands and brain busy – they all do different things, so she never gets bored.
Their toys are definitely all about helping her to figure things out for herself; Playing her own way and at her own pace.

Screen Shot 2014-09-03 at 15.23.09

Have you checked out the new Fisher-Price Discovery Your Way TV Advert also? I am loving it. These moments in a baby’s life are special and the advert totally portrays how curious and clever these little human beings are. Put a toy in front of them and just watch how they explore it and spend hours playing with it….you can almost hear their little minds ticking. It’s lovely!

Hooray for Fisher Price

The best thing about having a gym at home is that I don’t have to leave Lacie to workout, and the worst thing about having a gym at home is that Lacie sometimes has to come in with me – which I can imagine can get pretty boring for her. This is why I love Fisher-Price and their huge range of toys for babies (and toddlers – and children of lots of ages for that matter!. They have definitely helped keep her entertained whilst I finish my workout.

And Stretch….

Look Mummy I’m stretching too!

The American company, which was founded in 1930 has sooooooo many cool products on their website (they have created approximately 5,000 different toys), that I can guarantee I will be a customer for a very long time, especially after Lacie fell in love with the ever so colourful Newborn-to-Toddler Portable Rocker – just one of the fabulous products she has in her playroom.

The rocker, which has two overhead toys to encourage interactive play keeps her really entertained as she loves grabbing the lion and shaking it until it rattles. She also loves looking behind her and trying to grab the colourful animals printed on the material – I haven’t got the heart to tell her that she will never be able to grab and pull these 🙂 It”s all good learning though!
She also like sleeping in it, so as she gets tired I take the toys off, pop on the calming vibrations and recline the chair by folding the feet in, which makes the chair rock and soothes her into a comfortable deep sleep. This then allows me to finish my workout or eat my breakfast – my workouts obviously make her really tired….it’s a hard life!

The chair is designed for newborns to toddlers up to 18 kg, so I’ll defiantly be keeping hold of this for a while, as it has so many functions and it also folds away easily so I can store it when she not using it. I especially love the bright colours and the fact that it changes from a rocker to stationary seat with fold-out kickstand. Babies need so many toys,so the fact that Lacie can eat, sleep and play in this, saves us some space. I not sure my husband will ever get over the fact that he has another female in the house creating clutter. I have a feeling it’s only going to get worse!!

Screen Shot 2014-07-03 at 18.26.26

Fisher Price Rainforest Infant to Toddler Rocker; £69.99

Time to Wean

Just as I get my head around breast feeding, sleeping patterns and general routine, motherhood has thrown another curveball at me – weaning.
As Lacie reaches five months I know that it won’t be long until she’s on solids so I’ve been doing my research and of course looking at products that I’m going to need for her.
Asides from books, different colour vegetables and a highchair (I will get into that later), I found some cool little cups, bowls and spoons that I had to share with you. Who would of thought spoon shopping could be so exciting?!

I can’t tell you how excited I waste come across the Baby Ducks Sippy Cup on Borngifted.co.uk. Not only does it look like a mini Starbucks cup but its also BPA free and will be perfect for Lacie to drink her water from. She will fit in nicely with those regular ‘Mummy and Baby’ coffee mornings!

Screen Shot 2014-06-24 at 15.39.16Baby Ducks Sippy Cup, £6.99; Borngifted.co.uk

This plate is also super cool. Also known as Ms Food Face, the plate can make meal times great fun, especially if your little one is fussy! The Plate features a face in which you can decorate with food, for example why not give Ms Food Face some broccoli style earrings or an asparagus fringe? Let your child use their imagination and experiment with colourful fruit and veg to make their plate more exciting? I’ll definitely be using this when Lacie is a bit older – although I’m going to try my best to make sure she’e not a fussy eater like I was when I was little!

Screen Shot 2014-06-24 at 15.46.30

Ms Food Face, £11.99; Borngifted.co.uk

I can imagine that weaning can be particularly messy. I’ve also noticed that when I give Lacie water from her sippy cup, she likes to spit it back out again. That’s fine as it’s clear – but what happens when she decides to spit out some bright orange sweet potato on to her pretty clothes? Say hello to the Close Parent Coverable bib. It’s long sleeved and will cover your baby from their neck to their knees, making it perfect for catching any stray food. It comes in sizes 6-18 months and comes in loads of funky colours, making meal times more fun and definitely less stressful. No one wants to be changing outfits at every meal time…

Screen Shot 2014-06-24 at 15.56.14
Close Coverable Bib, £7.99; www.closeparent.com

When exploring the Close website, I also came across this waterproof, wipe clean and stain resistant play mat, which is designed to go on the floor at meal times and catch straying food. What I love is that it’s machine washable, with a waterproof and stain resistant side that will be perfect for nappy off time (my husband is a bit over-protective of our cream carpets!) and meal times! It’s foldable too and also has a soft fleecy side too, so after dinner, you can simply flip it over and enjoy some playtime before bed. I’ve noticed that baby stuff takes up a lot of room, so having something that does two jobs and also folds up is just perfect! It’s nice and pink too!

Screen Shot 2014-06-24 at 16.04.54

Playmat, £32.99; closeparent.com

Last but not least, these Heat Sensitive bowls are genius! They feature special heat sensitive material, which indicates when the food is too hot and gradually changes colour as your baby’s food reaches an appropriate temperature. It also has easy grip rubber handles, that make the bowls easy to hold and move around safely!
Screen Shot 2014-06-24 at 16.14.39

Heat Sensitive Bowls, £9.99; Fisher-price.com

My day……..

I haven’t given you an insight into my day for a while now so thought I would share my day today. It’s been a fun one, full of smiles, training, good food and of course quality time with my little angel!

Screen Shot 2014-07-02 at 20.47.51

To start my day off I had scrambled eggs with broccoli and a sprinkle of goats cheese.
I’ve really taken charge of my eating lately as I’ll be weaning Lacie in a few weeks time and won’t have the whole breast feeding excuse to eat what I like anymore. I thought if I rein it in now then it won’t be so much of a shock to the system. I don’t like change…and I’ll be honest the whole weaning process is scaring me slightly!

I then ventured to my local Virgin Active – my second home!
Today I played around with this interesting looking ball – also known as a Weightedi Ball, a functional piece of kit that’s a but like a medicine ball but squishy! You can kneel on it to do core moves like bird dogs or put your feet on it and use as a platform for things like glute bridges and lunges. I used it for a which warm up to help me engage my core and switch on my glutes and  away I went.

ugi

I love my local Virgin Active – I only go once a week (twice as I take Lacie swimming on Tuesdays) as all the other times I use the great outdoors and my home gym in my garden whilst Lacie is sleeping or in the pram,  so when I do go, I really go to town. After my warm up I did a metabolic circuit compromising of a push exercise, followed by a pull exercise, a lower body exercise, plyometric jumping move and then finished off with a isometric exercise to really burn my muscles out. I repeated this circuit three times and Jeez I’m aching already! Yay! Feel the burn! They have a great selection of kit in the gym, so I found myself a spot and kitted myself out with a barbell, plyometric platform and a TRX. The hour flew by!

Screen Shot 2014-07-02 at 21.21.06

When I go home, I fed Lacie and then made myself a chicken salad followed by some sparkling water with lemon, which helps to take the edge of my after meal cravings..

In the afternoon as Lacie cat napped I then caught up on a few emails and features before taking her to a school that I teach gymnastics at to meet all the children. Needless to say, they loved her and she enjoyed the attention. I then came home and had a few of my favourite RawLicious Raw Artisian Bread Crackers spread with Organic Butter to take the edge of my hunger whilst Lacie played in her favourite Fisher Price Sit Me Up Floor Seat and attempted to eat a carrot. I’m trying to give her things to experiment with at the moment so when it comes to weaning putting food in her mouth isn’t totally alien. She definitely seemed to like it!
carrot

For dinner I had a salmon fillet (lots of good fats!) with broccoli, carrots, sweetcorn and green beans. I love filling up on vegetables at dinner time. I then had a few RawLicious Date & Cashew Snackaroons, which by the way are sooooooo delicious and free from wheat, gluten, sugar, refined salt or anything artificial. You must give them a try they are made from coconuts, dates, nuts, raisins, ginger and vanilla powder. No nasties in sight!

Screen Shot 2014-07-02 at 21.12.05

Eight week Jabs

Lacie had her eight week jabs yesterday. These are given by injection (one in each leg) and then by mouth via a dropper. She was such a brave girl and had no real bad side effects apart from lethargically and sleepiness.

I was so proud that she was super brave that today we spent the day having lots of cuddles and playtime, which is where her new toy this Fisher Price Rainforest Friends Crib to Floor Mobile came in. We had fun for a good hour, with smiles and everything. She even played with it whilst me and Daddy ate our dinner. A whole dinner without any cries or cuddles – result!

Screen Shot 2014-03-28 at 20.48.58

Basically, the mobile sits on the floor and plays up to 20 minutes of music and features 8 colourful friends that spin overhead. The bright colours and patterns really caught her attention – she didn’t know where to look!

There is also a mirror and bat-at rollerball which keeps her happy during tummy time and encourages her to lift her head up and play with what’s in front of her, plus the Tiger, Lion, Monkey and Frog plush characters on the mobile can be brought down and attached to the base, providing great bat-at and reach & grasp play. There is so much to play with.

Most of all the music isn’t annoying AT ALL. It’s upbeat and fun and include lullabies and nature sounds to calm and soothe.

This is her in action…well and truly amazed by the colourful animals.

photo-15

Fisher Price Rainforest Friends Crib to Floor Mobile. £49.99

The Diary of a Breast Feeding Mum

Breast-feeding can be pretty demanding. It can be so rewarding too, and I’m so glad I’ve done it and stuck it out for over eight weeks now.

During the first few weeks my nipples were so sore, which is pretty common and I had mastitis, which thankfully I managed to cure with warm flannels, ibuprofen & self-massage. It was a really painful time but the best thing to do is carry on feeding through it. It helps block the inflamed milk ducts.

Anyway I came out fighting and still feeding. It definitely gets easier, so this is how my day usually goes.

Wake at 5pm.
Lacie now goes from 10pm – 5am, which gives me 7 hours sleep. I always feed her in bed with me, and doze off. It’s so much easier than having to get up and make up a bottle.
Night-time feeding is definitely easier thanks to my Anita breast-feeding PJs, which are comfy and really easy to feed with. No fiddley straps or buttons, they have a chest opening for feeding. Great for ease and cold nights too, when you just really don’t want to strip off.

Screen Shot 2014-03-19 at 21.24.55

Back to sleep until 8am
This feed is always followed by smiles and a bit of playtime. Our favorite story book at the moment is Wilson the Whistling Tree Frog, which is part of her Babycademy set. We read the book whilst doing the actions with Wilson the Frog. It’s great fun for both of us.

Screen Shot 2014-03-19 at 21.27.04

Up at 9am
This is when I do my exercise. I pop Lacie straight in her pram and off we go. I either walk for an hour or jog around the park with her pram, stopping en-route at the children’s playground for some toning work with my resistance band and dumbbells. I will post one of my workouts soon.

photo 1

Back by 10:30am
Breakfast. This is usually a Be Skinny Me shake or a Slender Blend shake with Maca powder, a banana and some cinnamon. I also have a bowl of home-made granola, made by soaking oats overnight in apple juice and then mixing with seeds, nuts and dried apricots. I then bake it until golden brown. I love Maca powder because it helps balance out your hormones and help reduce the stress hormones caused by sleepless nights and being a new mum. 

Screen Shot 2014-03-19 at 21.34.14

11:30 Feed then playtime
My feeding app ‘Nursing Time’ really is my bible. It times between feeds, times how long she feeds for, from what side she’s fed and also records all her feeds for the day. Great to look back on. Especially when baby brain kicks in and you can’t remember which side you fed from last.

Screen Shot 2014-03-19 at 21.35.29

11:30 is also playtime
Lacie either goes on her playmat, in her Fisher Price Infant to Toddler Rocker, which comes with comes bright and colourful fabrics to stimulate her little brain and a vibration unit to calm and soothe your baby or simply on her blanket on the floor. She loves having a kick around.
Whilst this is keeping her entertained, I’ll have a snack of sliced chicken pieces, 1/2 avocado and cucumber. Protein is essential for maximising your milk flow, whilst the good fats in the avocado will help improve her  growth and development. I find that I’m really thirsty also when breast-feeding so the cucumber helps keep me hydrated.

Screen Shot 2014-03-19 at 21.46.20

2pm: Lunch
This is usually homemade tomato and lentil soup, which is full of iron and vitamins, followed by some fruit.

2:30: Out and About 
I find this feed the hardest as I’m usually out and about with my NCT friends, mother in law or  mum or sisters, so I need clever clothes that allow me to feed discreetly. I’ve found the Breast Vest to be über helpful, which makes any top a breastfeeding top. It works by  sitting  just under your nursing bra, so when you feed it covers your tummy and doesn’t interfere with your bra straps.  Babes with Babies is another great clothing line, which make stylish clothes especially for nursing mums. I have the Cloud 9 Nursing T-Shirt, which has an elegant scooped neckline and soft draped pleats that flatter a postnatal tum.

.

Screen Shot 2014-03-20 at 11.37.55

4pm: Juice Time
I’m always tired and hungry in the afternoon so I always have a juice to pick myself up. I love Plenish Juices. They come in handy little bottles, are cold-pressed and full of vitamins, minerals and nutrients to help keep my milk quality high. I also love making my own juices. I tend to do a batch on a Sunday night and freeze. My favourite at the moment is one beetroot, one apple, 1/4 inch of cucumber and 1/2 lemon. I add this to 1/2 a litre of water and sip throughout the afternoon.

Screen Shot 2014-03-20 at 13.12.54

5:30: Feed
Feed time again. If I’m out and about still, then I’ll take some expressed milk, which I’d expressed earlier using my Medela Swing Breast Pump. I love it. It’s so quick and easy – and not stressful. I always thought I’d hate expressing but it really isn’t that bad. I like to give Lacie a bottle every three days just so she’s not fussy and I know she will take a bottle, which is especially important for when the grandparents have her and mummy and daddy want to pop out for some dinner or a spot of shopping. My breast pump came with a Calma bottle, which enables Lacie to maintain the natural feeding behaviour that she’s learnt on the breast. I don’t want her getting confused when going from bottle to breast and back again.

Screen Shot 2014-03-20 at 13.19.05

6:15 : Core Workout 
My hubby usually arrives home about now, so I hand her over for daddy time, whilst I head to our home gym and get some core work in. Just 20 mins is enough to help heal my recti diastasis, which is abdominal separation caused by pregnancy. It’s all about consistency, so I do my exercises little and often. I need a strong core again before I start running any sort of distance or start lifting heavy weights.

7pm: Dinner
Protein & vegetables for us. If I’m extra hungry I’ll have a sweet potato too.
Dinner is usually followed by a chopped apple and almond butter.

7:30: Bath time
Bath time. Lacie usually goes in first. Now her skin isn’t so sensitive I love adding some special Cussons Mum & MeSleep Tight Baby Bath‘. It’s infused with lavender to help her sleep and most importantly its hypoallergenic and paediatrician approved. I always finish her bath with a massage. I wrap my hands around her legs, then gently pull my hands down to her feet before tracing circles on the soles of her feet with my thumbs. I use the Sleep Tight Balm for this. She loves it – and it makes her really relaxed and sleepy.
I’ll have a bath after her whilst she sleeps on daddy. My fav products are also from the Mum & Me range. Especially Calm & Soothe Bath Soak and the New Mum Firming Butter, which contains Oat and Marine Algae Extracts, helps to leave skin feeling tighter, firmer and more toned.

Screen Shot 2014-03-20 at 13.33.34

8:30: Feed
Milk time again. This tends to be a long, relaxed feed, to full her tummy for the night. She’ll then sleep again either on daddy or in her crib downstairs with us, which allows is to get a few chores down or spend some quality time together.

10:30: Last feed
I like to give her a little top up before bed. If I’m really tired, I’ll go to bed at 9ish, then set my alarm to give her a quick feed. She’s sleep 7 hours at the moment so I know if I give her a little top up now I won’t have to wake again until 5:30ish.