A family pub lunch on Groupon (review)

I signed up to Groupon a couple of years ago when we moved to Bristol. For those who don’t know, it’s a discount service that emails you deals every day. Money is generally a sore point for us, so seeing if we could get a deal here and there for some recreation seemed a good idea.

I have to admit I’ve mostly not even looked at the emails though. When I have opened them, it’s been useful to see what’s on offer in the area as I feel like I’m still getting to know Bristol and Somerset. I’ve still only taken up one or two offers.

The offer

A few weeks ago, Groupon gave me £60 credit so I could review their service so I thought, why not? It then took me forever to find something I actually wanted to do. I wanted to make an actual saving, not just by something for the sake of it. I kept looking at things and trying to work out whether they really lived up to the hype in their blurbs and suspecting that many of them didn’t.

In the end, we decided to go for steaks, mussels and red wine for four at a pub called The White Horse in Hambrook. It sounded like a cracking deal at £38 and we fancied taking some friends out for lunch. What’s more, the pub’s website looked promising – gastropub, anyone?
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Dine with bloggers: Namaskar Lounge

Mum of One, Babberblog, Mutterings of a Fool, Knitty Mummy, Purple Mum and Medicated Follower of Fashion

Jetlagged, Friday night found me playing with tupperware on the kitchen floor (with Talitha, I promise), procrastinating from childproofing the kitchen. Laurence came home to a powerful reminder that housekeeping isn’t why he married me. I stared at him for a moment, trying to work out why he’d come home from work early. Then it clicked, he wasn’t early.

I was late. I was supposed to be meeting Mum of One, Purple Mum, Medicated Follower of Fashion, Knitty Mummy, Mutterings of a Fool and Babberblog for pre-dinner drinks at 7 and abandoning them before the meal because too much fun in the sun out in Trinidad had left me skint. It was now 7. Darn it, I’d have to go to dinner. And find something decent to wear.
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Baby led weaning: six months into a love affair with food

Talitha turned one around the middle of last month but my last Baby Led Weaning Carnival was before then so I’m taking the opportunity to mark now what I think is a pretty exciting landmark: six months into a love affair with food.

As with all great loves, it has not been without its drama. We’ve had the days where she’s been more banana than stomach, only for the beloved fruit to be cast down from the high chair in disdain. And so it’s gone with most foods. Peas obsessively eaten one at a time only to be methodically thrown on the floor the next day.
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Giveaway: Win two tickets to a yummy Yeo Valley farm or garden tour

Meadow in a car

So you remember the time I went to the Yeo Valley Family Farm, climbed a hill, looked down at gorgeous Blagdon lake, learned about the area’s history in rocks, learned even more about organic farming and gardening, learned how to make yummy food from a yummy chef, ate said food, saw some cows and enjoyed afternoon tea?

You don’t? I wrote all about it here. The day started with wellies and an interesting chat about sustainable living and ended in my baby putting natural yogurt in her hair. That was over a month ago and I still consider it one of the most enjoyable days outdoors I’ve had this summer. I’ve kept thinking this would such a great gift for some of the keen gardeners I know.

So I’m delighted to offer you the chance to experience it all for yourself. Yeo Valley is giving one of my readers two tickets to visit them in Blagdon, Somerset and take their farm or garden tour. It’s a full-day experience complete with lunch and afternoon tea at Wills Barn.
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Baby Led Weaning Carnival 2

The second Baby Led Weaning Carnival is here!

This has been an exciting month for watching Talitha discover food. She turns one next week and can now eat pretty proficiently with a pre-loaded spoon (not quite as messily as this). She’s also started asking for food by signing and actually eats at each meal, instead of just throwing everything on the floor pretty much right away.

If you’ve not done baby led weaning (letting your baby feed herself from the start) Carolin from Mummy Alarm gives a succinct and accurate description in Baby Led Weaning is…
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Baby Led Weaning Carnival 1 – apples, sushi and a lot of mess

Talitha turns eleven months this week. As if some chemical reaction was timed for the appearance of two teeth, she’s suddenly begun to eat substantial amounts of food. Despite my bravado, opting for Baby Led Weaning from the start, a small part of me worried about her entering her second year of life without much of an appetite for anything but boob.

Mind you nothing’s necessarily wrong with that either. A mere century or so ago it was illegal to feed an infant solids before a year without medical advice to do so. Not that I’m advocating waiting that long either! I digress. On to the carnival.

About two weeks ago I invited bloggers and others to share their baby led weaning experiences as inspiration and encouragement, and generally as a resource for anyone visiting this Circus. Somehow I’ve got my dates mixed up, horrendously. So, this post was meant for this morning but it is now nearly the next day. Alas.

First off, if you’re not sure what I’m on about when I say “Baby Led Weaning”, head over to WAHM-BAM where Tasha gives a clear and thorough explanation of what it entails, with some tips about how to do it. I fully identify with the mess captured in her photographs and envy her the dog.

Next, we’ve got a photo from Molly of Mother’s Always Right. Her gorgeous daughter Frog is just past one here and making good headway with an apple. Unpeeled and unsliced, it was the stuff of nightmares for her unconverted friends. She looks like she’s loving it and it’s almost given me the courage to offer Talitha the same!

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Introducing the Baby Led Weaning Carnival

The health visitor came for a routine visit. I agonised beforehand about certain choices we’d made that we’re bound to be contentious, especially bed sharing and baby led weaning.

Maybe she’d surprise me but I made up my mind to be suitably vague. I just didn’t want to get into it, you know?

I keep thinking now that I should have.

HV: How many times a day does she feed?
Me: Oh, it varies.
HV: She should be eating more solids by now and demanding less of you.
Me: Mmhmm.

Really, though, why didn’t I say what I was thinking – that actually it’s perfectly fine that Talitha still breastfeeds at least six times a day?

That’s her main source of nutrition for the first year. It’s more nutrient and calorie dense than any other food I can give her. When she’s ready to eat enough to displace milk feeds, she will.

This is yet another reason I love baby led weaning. It ensures that she does what she’s going to do on her own unique schedule.

That said, she really does eat. Even now, it’s exciting seeing her do it. Her dexterity has improved massively and she usually will eat all sorts of things from cereal to squid.

I seriously lack inspiration as to what to feed her, though. Left on my own, I’d eat toast all day long but I want her diet to have more variety than that.

So that’s part of why I’ve decided to hold a bi-weekly Baby Led Weaning carnival*, to gather inspiration. The other is to gather real-life stories of BLW families. Hopefully this will be both an ongoing resource and celebration.

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