#TeenTalk With Nadia Sawalha & Her Teen Daughter Maddie

#teentalk This week British Chemist Boots launch their #teentalk campaign along with Procter and Gamble who make may household and toiletry products that we all use everyday. The idea behind the campaign is to  encourage parents and their teens to talk talk about changes the that will happen to them during puberty and to talk some more when they do. Basically just talk!


The #teentalk campaign is being endorsed by celebrity Mum of 2 Nadia Sawalha and her eldest daughter Maddie,13.

“Up until this point, all problems have been easy to solve….a kiss, a biscuit, a cuddle and now, things don’t feel as easy to solve, especially for teenagers.  It feels different for us parents in a completely different way than its difficult for our teens.  It’s just a big change.  We have to have a conversation that is just ongoing and changes as they change.”

Nadia Sawalha


Procter and Gamble asked some teens how they felt about their looks and there responses were that:

  • 63% of girls feel positive about their looks
  • 27% of girls feel extremely positive
  • 72% of boys feel good about their looks

These statistics are encouraging.  I know how I felt as a teenager and back then there wasn’t the pressure of the internet and social media.  so much pressure is put upon our youngsters and by talking to them then we can reassure then what they feel is normal and help them to deal with the stresses of the modern world; one very different to one I know I grew up in.

Puberty is a time for many changes that occur both physically and with our hormones and emotions.  I strongly believe like Boots, the key is to talk.  I know I never want to repeat my own experience with my children.  I want the to be armed with all the relevant fact and more.  Plus I want them to know that they can ask me anything with out being embarrassed.

“The teenage brain changes phenomenally and it’s such a confusing time for them”

Sarah Newton, Teenologist


My children are 12 & 14 and I started having a general talk with them around about 8 or 9.  I also purchased some lovely books which were very age appropriate and asked them if they wanted to discuss things after.  My Son, was not so open.  I’m his mum, he clearly saw it as awkward but being a single parent I tried.  I’ve brought the subject up a number of times since but he doesn’t want to talk.  I can’t force him to talk and I never would but he knows he can talk to me if he wants to.

My daughter on the other hand did ask some questions and she also knows that at anytime she can ask about things if she wanted to.  I’ve explained to both of them I’d rather they ask, then be confused or unclear about anything.

It’s embarrassing to talk about these things but as a parent I’d rather be embarrassed than have my children be so confused as I was because my parents told me nothing.  My period started at 10 and I thought I was dying.

“Some of my friends haven’t had that chat…maybe because they don’t have an open relationship with their parents or maybe their parents are just embarrassed”

Maddie, 13


Like Nadia, Maddie and Teenologist Sarah Newton, who I had the pleasure of meeting also, I firmly believe talking is the key.  Its all about preparing our children for the next, often daunting chapter of their lives.

“Its about keeping that relationship together and talking and yeah we’re going to get it wrong sometimes but it doesn’t matter, as long as you just keep talking”

Sarah Newton, Teenologist

Just talk, talk, talk and little your child know you are their for them when they want to talk if they don’t feel the time is right.

“It’s about just asking….Do you want to talk to me about this or do you want to talk to someone else?  It’s the best parenting tip ever,,,just ask the question”

Sarah Newton, Teenologist


I don’t think anybody is going to say talking with your teenager will be easy and at times they won’t won’t to talk, you’ll get frustrated that they don’t want to but just try again another time.

“As a mum, I understand all too well with the challenges of communicating with teens.  They suddenly go from wanting to tell mum everything, to one word answers!  And you can’t solve things with a quick cuddle or a sweet treat.  First shaves, first periods and new personal hygiene and skin care regimes are all unfamiliar experiences for teens and can be difficult topics for parents to approach”

Nadia Sawalha

From my experience with my two children I very often get them blocking the subject out!  It’s a hard topic to talk about with your mum as its of a such personal nature. I just reassure them that I’m there for them.


“Sometimes you are just not in the mood to talk about stuff and other times you just want a cuddle”

Maddie, 13

Boots have in store this great #teentalk booklet which is available free in store.  It has some great tips on how to tackle this topic and some great insights in to what your teen is going through both physically and emotionally.  Boots also in conjunction with Proctor and Gamble have some special offers in store from now until 30 May 2016.  22% of parents admitted to not knowing what products to recommend/purchase for their teen.  There are some great offers in store right now on products they will love including Always, Tampax, Gillette, Venus and Boots Tea Tree & Witch Hazel products.


I also have a competition running where you can win some of these lovely products for the teen in your life.  Competition ends 30 May 2016

a Rafflecopter giveaway

And if all else fails?  Sit down an eat some cake like I did when I met Nadia and Maddie for afternoon tea last month!


In exchange for talking about this campaign I was provided with a selection of goodies from Procter and Gamble that are available in Boots to help your teen find their way successfully through puberty.  I also had afternoon tea with Nadia and her lovely daughter Maddie.

What Blogging Means To Me

Blogging can be whatever you want it to be. To be honest I am little over all the blog posts that tell me I have to do this I have to do that.

I even saw one recently that said to be successful on Instagram you only follow 1/4 of the number of followers you have. Ie you have 400 followers you should never follow more than 100.


If we all took that approach nobody would have any followers. My Instagram followers are half the number I follow yet I have 5 times the number of followers this person had. The person who was telling me I was doing it all wrong has less followers than me. Total madness.


My blog isn’t perfect, it does rate highly with page views but it’s mine and I like the way I run it. It’s not all about making money which I feel blogging is turning in to. It’s about doing what makes us happy. Doing what we want. Doing it our way. On our little space on the web.

Blogging to me is therapeutic. It allows me to put my thoughts down and free space in my head. In this busy 24/7 world we have found ourselves in I really think we should use whatever tactics we can to slow our lives down, to get back to basics and enjoy life.


Have we all become money orientated?  Are e unable to do anything without their being a commercial gain?

Do you find blogging is turning in to how to blog guides, how not to blog guides when the experts telling us have only had blogs for a short few months?

Do you find these blogging guides useful or do you keep on blogging your way?

Making Home Printing Easy With HP Instant Ink

I love scrapbooking.  I love this hobby that allows me to keep a record of our family memories.  It’s something that I find so relaxing. A hobby that I can do at home but also I hobby I can partake with friends. Scrapbooking has brought a lovely bunch of people in to my life.

home printing

I like to record my family memories as soon as possible. I just don’t like sitting around waiting for my photos to be printed then sent to me. I like to have my pictures when I want them. I like the flexibility of printing photos at the size I want not the size a company think I what. For me home printing is the way to go.

home printing

I have tried over the years a number of different printers and the best printer for my needs has been a HP. Their printers give me the quality and resolution of print I want for photographs. I don’t want sub quality photos to record our memories. I also want a printer that has good quality reasonably priced ink. With HP I’ve always got this.

home printing
But what I really want when I am printing photographs at home to use in scrapbooking is to not run out of ink, to have supplies when I need them. This is what I like about HP’s ink subscription service.

Do you think the subscription service would be something you would benefit from?

home printing

I love the idea of not running out of ink as when home printing nothing annoys me more than running out of ink part way through printing photographs. I love there is a reminder when you get low on ink because despite my printer telling me I always forget to check.

Am I the only one who runs out of printer ink at the most crucial time?

Us Three By The Sea

Lazy Afternoons 

Lazy afternoons. Sometimes it’s just what you need. I’ll be honest the last few days I’ve not been feeling too good but that’s the joys of having a couple of chronic illnesses. You can look and feel fine one day and wake up the next day feeling quite ill. Sadly with hidden illnesses which I have, you can look quite well. Over the past few weeks I have had a couple of days when I’ve not looked too good. Trust friends to remind you of how I’ll you look!

lazy afternoons
Yesterday, I felt rubbish but I needed some fresh air. I just had to get out of the house. It was a lovely day and I had cabin fever. A friend picked me up and we drove to the local canal. It may not look like it from these pictures but we are in the middle of the West Midlands. Miles from the country side, smack bang in the middle of factories and houses everywhere.

lazy afternoons by the canal

But how peaceful and calming does it look?  I was struggling with my walking and was actually on crutches so we literally just went a few feet down the path and looked along the canal before sitting down on a wall and sitting to chat.

lazy afternoons by the canal

Drinking cold drinks, chatting and taking in the sun along side the peaceful canal. A place that seemed a million miles from where we actually were.

lazy afternoons by the canal

If you look at the bridge in the photograph above, that’s the road. A busy noisy road but from where we were sat the traffic was not heard or seen.  Such a relaxing time spent having a lazy afternoon.

Do you ever have lazy afternoons like this?

Understanding Your Car Insurance Policy Details

If you’re a driver, you’ll no doubt be aware of how important it is to have car insurance. In order for you to drive a vehicle on public roads, this type of cover is mandatory, so it’s crucial you have a suitable policy in place.

Although it’s required by law, you don’t necessarily have to fork out a fortune for your car insurance. To secure yourself a great deal, you could use a broker website. For example, purchasing car insurance from Chill gives you the opportunity to view and compare quotes from a range of leading providers.

While you may be pleased that you’ve managed to bag yourself a bargain, it’s also important that you understand the details of your chosen policy.

car insurance

To ensure you’re fully in the know, take a look at the following guide.

1. Confirm who is insured

In your documents, there should be a section specifying who is insured to drive your car. If you have declared yourself as the main driver, this will be noted in your policy details. During the application process, you will have been asked to include the names of anyone else you would like to insure under your policy. Whether you’ve added a second or third driver, you should make sure this is detailed in your documentation. Allowing someone to drive your vehicle who isn’t insured is illegal and could land you in serious trouble. So to avoid complications, make sure the relevant drivers are covered.

2. Understand your voluntary excess

Your voluntary excess is the amount of money you’d be willing to pay in the event you need to make a claim through your insurance. At the insurance application stage, you will have been asked to enter the amount you’d like your voluntary excess to be. It’s important that you’re able to afford this sum of money should you need to go through your insurance, so if you’re concerned that your excess is too high, it’s recommended that you speak to your insurance provider for help and advice.

3. Be aware of what to do if you have an accident

Ultimately, your car insurance policy is in place to provide you with the peace of mind that you’ll be covered should the worst happen. So, although you may never have to, it’s important that you’re fully aware of what to do if you’re involved in an accident. As a minimum, you should know your insurance company’s name, their contact number and your policy number. You may also want to look into the finer details, such as whether you’ll receive a courtesy car or if you’ll be expected to pay an additional administration fee. This information should be included in your paperwork.

Taking the time to understand your insurance policy details will mean you’re fully prepared in the event you need to file a claim.

Us Three By The Sea