Saturday, May 31, 2014

Cute by Edition Limitée

Last week I discovered Cute Edition, a French independent designer brand based in Dubai, dedicated to little fashionistas and trendsetters aged between 1 and 10. Well named, the cute clothing line currently carries T-shirts, Polos and soon little dresses proudly made with care and quality. Cute Edition pays particular attention to comfort and durability for their young customers. I like that the garments are designed with love in Paris and Dubai and handmade with care in the UAE.

Currently available "Pop of Arabia", minimalistic Arabic inspired silhouettes pay homage to Cute Edition’s roots in the Middle East. We like the artsy print effects. "70’s Cute Kids" is a cool reference of vintage American advertisements. Nice mix of pastel colours and vivid graphic elements and shapes. "Baby Balloon" models is a reference to 1957 Oscar winner “Le Ballon Rouge”. The range of T-shirts portrays digitally printed balloons; the placement of the prints varies with every T-shirt. "Animal Art" is fun collection showcasing children’s favourite wild animals such as the Lion, Leopard, Zebra, Peacock and the Camel with a famous golden frame of the Louvre museum in Paris. "The Classic" use simplicity, using the mascot Toby the Teddy Bear as an embroidered logo. "Little Dandy" collection play with the 'like daddy' idea, featuring classy pocket squares, our little trendsetters can now be as dapper as their fathers.

 Check out the e-shop for more details and purchase or visit Favourite Things at Marina Mall.


Tuesday, May 27, 2014

A few things this week...



Hello lovelies...

♥ I already told you about how much I like Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula Skin Therapy Oil in a previous blog post. Now let me tell you about their baby products. I tried the two new additions to the baby care line this week and we like it! Baby Butter, with skin comforting cocoa butter and aloe, and Baby Wash with cocoa butter and shea butter, the perfect skin moisturizing soothing products for baby. I used it for Luella's bath time and it was a little delight... Specially formulated for baby sensitive skin, the new multipurpose baby products are all made with natural ingredients and are formulated with pure moisturizers along with skin soothing natural ingredients to cleanse, soften and care for babies’ sensitive skin. Very pleasant and ultra gentle is the head-to-toe moisturising cleaner. Sulfate-free and tear-free, it cleanses and conditions without harsh detergents that can dry sensitive skin. We like the light scent of soothing lavender and chamomile calm and relax the baby for a restful night’s sleep. Checkout palmers.com to know more about about the products range and its benefit. Retail price approx. AED26, a quality bargain.

♥ Cool shopping event this Wednesday, May 28th from 8.30 to 5.30pm, "Doubai Ladies Bazaar", 25 vendors, mainly french, will be selling their creations: fashion, jewellery, home decor, books,... like Birdsn'Bees, Jules&Juliettes, Keenbags, Bo-M by Camille, Mediterranean Touch... Check the Facebook page for more info and location map. Don't miss out!

♥ Love those espadrilles from LaPlageDubai, available at Mercato Mall pop up shop.

♥ New in town, opening next week: Bounce! A new cool experience of indoor fun (just in time for summer) for kids and adults. Imagine a massive warehouse full of over 80 interconnected trampolines, allowing you to literally fly through the air and bounce off the walls. For get a taste of the Free-Jumping Revolution follow on Facebook or check out the BOUNCE website. Watch this space for full review soon!

♥ I like this fresh Mint & Lime tea cooler, perfect for afternoon refreshment. Thank you bakedbree.com for the recipe.

JustKidding, retail store concept for modern parents offers some useful, interesting, and free events this month.
- Breastfeeding Q&A support group meets on the first Monday of every moth at the Safa park store. Next session is June 2nd, come by and get your answers over a cup of tea.
- Sensory Development and your child; an information session with Tamzin D’Aubrey, June 9th, from 10am, Safa Park Store. RSVP: info@justkidding-me.com.
- Babyproof Your Marriage; A workshop for pregnant Mum’s & Dad’s With Amy Vogelaar, on June 12th, 6.30PM-8.30PM Safa Park Store. RSVP: info@justkidding-me.com.
More info on their Facebook page

♥ Next on my to do list this weekend... Breakfast at Clinton Street Baking, a newly open popular eatery from New York. Well known in the Big Apple for their pancakes, biscuits, egg dishes and fried chicken, this family run business is now open in Dubai, Burj View, Downtown. Salivating, thinking of this treat to come. Pregnancy cravings...

Monday, May 26, 2014

A Book for Little artists

I got this book "My Very First Art Book" a couple of years ago for Luella. I really liked the content and was hoping for some fun "Me and Her artsy time together". She was too young to enjoy it and be interested about it for more then 5 minutes. We kept it on the book shelf.

She's now 5 years old and it's currently a favourite. It's a fantastic book filled with real work from great artists (Rembrandt, Marc Chagall, Matisse,..) and lots of ideas and technique to help children create artwork of their own.

They get to see different techniques like drawing (doodling, smudging, ...) , printing, painting ( cool, warm colors, spatter&splashes,..) and experimenting with different brushes and mediums (cutting, sticking, ripping paper, 3D,...).

It has a nice easy format, two pages spread with an artist's work featured on the left with 3 lines description (style and technique) and on the right page provide some ideas and projects for children to do using the artist's technique.

It's currently providing hours of creative fun for Luella. It would be a lovely present as well, just had a couple of art supplies and you get a cool birthday gift.

We got "My Very First Art Book" from Usborne at Magrudy's but you might also find it at Kinokuniya Dubai Mall or on Amazon.com




Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Style ideas: Happy feet




25 weeks pregnant and missing my high heels shoes. I wish I could sleep on my fav stilettos now and then but no way that's going to happen, by mid day, I am swollen in my feet due to heat and fluid retention. Not pretty!

So I am shopping for flats, there is so many cool option from espadrilles, pointy flats and slip on skate shoes. Thank you Zara, Asos, h&m for all the cool and inexpensive options… all to satisfy my little shoe frustration. Happy shopping.



Thursday, May 15, 2014

Six Senses Zhigy Bay - family weekend

Here's a little piece of heaven on Earth, nestled between mountains and a pristine beach of opal blue water of the Musandam's fjords, Six Senses Zhigy Bay beach resort will surprise you with it's castaway rugged scenery and luxury set up.


Last weekend, we packed up for a little family getaway only two hours away from Dubai for a "baby moon" and my birthday celebration combined. It was a perfect family, chilling and pampering time. I loved the aesthetic of the resort, muted light, earth tones, ragged beauty. It's all very luxurious in a no bling way. The rustic feel of an Omani village style resort , secluded by stunning scenery is a perfect set up for a relaxing or active getaway.

It starts with your arrival, choose the scenic four-wheel drive from the top of the mountain overlooking the bay or make a grand entrance with a tandem paragliding or by speedboat from a neighbouring bay. Excitement guarantied. We enjoyed our adventurous drive up and down the mountain with a scenic photo stop at the top. Check-in was very efficient and our Gem ( guest entertainment manager) was helpful to set us up in our Garden Pool Villa which was perfect to accommodate a couple and two children. Have a look at the website, to choose your villa type. Our luxurious villa built out of natural stone and wood with its design inspired by a traditional Omani Village was stunning, simple, stylish with great amenities. There is lots of little details to make your stay special: the choice of pillows, nice selection of complimentary teas / coffees, dates and Arabic pastries, beach basket, bikes parked outside your villa for getting around on the resort (even for children).


The award-winning Six Senses Zighy Bay offers different dining options, we enjoyed our first diner at Summer House, a relaxed atmosphere overlooking the pool. Comfy seating, Luella fell asleep on the sofa after her fresh tomatoes and mozzarella soup, while we enjoyed our after diner drinks. Food was good, grilled fish with organic salad from the garden for me and braised beef for hubby. Delighted with our diner, we took a walk back to the villa on the illuminated path gazing at the stars. Breakfast is served until 11am at Spice Market, so no rush, we had a morning swim in the sea before heading to our breakfast feast of organic Arabic dishes, regional specialities and international cuisine, sure to please everyone.

The resort offers lots of activities, I suggest you have a look at the website. You will find attractions for everyone from diving, snorkeling excursion, boat rides, mountain bikes visits, paragliding, yoga, cooking classes or just chilling by your pool villa or one of the two main pools of the resort…

Kids will love Six Senses Zhigy Bay! It's a fantastic place to play on the beach looking for seashells and crabs hiding in the sand, for hours of playing in the pool, for running around the kids playground, feeding the wondering goats, watching a movie under the stars eating popcorn and bicycling around the resort with mummy and daddy. The Chaica Club, for children aged 4–12 is free and offers distractions from arts&craft, sandcastles building, pizza making, henna design, beach bowling, Arabic lessons… There is also a teen club Al Feetean's, with two drop-in sessions (9am–12 noon and 2pm–6pm) more adventurous options including abseiling, archery, capoeira, photography, survival skills, raft-building and snorkeling – mostly free.

Friday night, we wanted to experience The Edge, Zighy Bay's mountaintop fine-dining. Unfortunately, the "Michelin Star" gourmet diner was fully booked. Disappointed, our GEM, set up something truly special for us. A private diner on top of wine cellar tower. A magical set up with a 360 view of the views over the crystal waters and mountains of the Gulf of Oman. The small intimate terrace and candle light was a magical setting. We enjoyed Champagne and a large selection of dining tapas. Perfect! Luella was at the kid's club for a movie night. By 9pm, the kids club was closing, the lovely ladies from Chaica Club brought us Luella to finish up the evening together, just on time for desert. There is a in-room babysitting service as well if you need.

Overall our stay was perfect! You need to book in advance to experience The Edge to avoid disappointment. We heard it's a must try! Six Senses is famous for it's spa facilities, you are also advise to book in advance. Little "homework" recommended before traveling. Six Senses Zhigy Bay is pricey but truly a treat to experience. I look forward to our next visit. Unlike many 5 stars hotels in the regions I had the chance to experience, Zighy Bay is not just "I have done it, what's next". I really hope to come again. Loved it! ♥ Thanks hubby for an amazing family weekend.

photos from my iPhone and couple of ones from www.sixsenses.com

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Surf House Dubai



It's open! The new Surf House Dubai, launched last month and it's already a hit destination within the surfing community of Dubai. A one shop stop for all your surfing, paddling and beach loving stuff.

The Surf House offers great options for renting paddle boards and surf boards, with different options for all abilities and ages . The in house experts will help you pick up the right kit for you. Enjoy a morning paddle before work or a sunset session, you have changing facilities on site for your convenience. The Surf House also offers a membership storage option taking away any hassle of lugging your 12 foot SUP back and forth from the beach.

The retail area is packed with the latest boards, cool beach wear exclusively from Quiksilver and Roxy all for you to embrace the beach lifestyle.

So here it is, my new hangout! I would like to think, that I am a surf babe, catching waves in the morning after school drop off, but not really. Thanks to the team behind The Surf House, I can already paddle my way around the Burj Al Arab, but that the extend of my skills. Now 24 weeks pregnant, I will enjoy my cup of joe (from Raw Coffee) at the coffee shop and hangout with the cool people! Or might join a Yoga class from the studio upstairs...

For more info visit The Surf House villa, located on Jumeira Beach Road, Umm Suqueim, opposite the no longer standing Chalet Restaurant. See location map. Or check out surfingdubai.com or facebook.com/Surfhousedubai ♥♥

Loved the cute cards from Quenn B, available at the shop, all with a surfer theme.


Monday, May 12, 2014

A few things...


♥ Inspiration maternity photography from 100layercakelet.com and Rebekah West over

You Got a Gift is the easiest way to send eGift Cards from top brands. Delivered by email, SMS & Facebook, simply printed and hand delivered! YouGotaGift.com is the first of its kind Online Mall for Gift Cards in the Middle East. A nice gift for any occasion, check out the video.

♥ Father's day is coming up… 1847 welcomes all fathers to share their grooming retreat with their sons on Father’s Day.On Father’s Day, 1847 invites all fathers to share these traditions with their sons by offering a complimentary 15-minute foot reflexology massage with any treatment booked. Bonding moment for daddy! This exclusive Father’s Day experience is valid on 15 June 2014.

♥ Some beach things to do, look for cool games and entertaining ideas for the kids.
Thanks to mom.me !

GlamBox this month is all about Benefit Cosmetics! Some really good items like Big Easy: Liquid to powder to even out skin tone and conceal imperfection, Fake Up concealer and The Porefessional a pro balm to minimize the appearance of pores. Tested and loved it all! There is a 5th product missing… a new release we are waiting for! Any idea? Well, watch this space for a full review.

♥ Do you know about Argan oil and its benefits? I remember visiting an artisan factory back in Morocco couple of years back, it was interesting to discover such a versatile and multipurpose oil. It has a very high concentration of Vitamin E, antioxidants, fatty acids like omega3,6,9. This week, I had the chance to try out Green Tea Antioxidant Face Mask with Argan Oil from Izil. A Natural beauty brand, made in Morocco & which products are made from organically certified Argan Oil, together with other natural, pure & rare ingredients. Lovely. facebook.com/IZIL.NaturalArganBeauty for more info. Available at littlemajlis.com


Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Win a AED500 gift voucher from Benetton !!!


COMPETITION!!!!
Here's your chance to win a AED500 gift voucher from Benetton UAE with Dubai our Sandbox

1/Become a fan and follow our page: like Benetton and Dubai our Sandbox Facebook pages, not just the link!

2/ Share this link
That simple…

Competition open for participants who are residing in UAE (or near Dubai that can visit United Colors of Benetton, The Dubai Mall should in case you will win).

Winner will be announced on Tuesday May 13th.
Good luck everyone!

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Happy Anniversary Nutella

Nutella is celebrating it's 50th anniversary! The brand is starting off the anniversary year by celebrating together with people throughout the world. You, me and all fans around the world can share their own personal Nutella® story, becoming a part of the international anniversary celebration.

“Tell us your very own, personal Nutella® story!” – reads the call to Nutella® fans all around the globe, an appeal to share their personal Nutella® adventure". Fans in the Middle East can submit their Nutella® story to the www.nutellastories.com website in the form of text postings, photos or videos in either English or Arabic. The most intriguing Nutella® fan stories will be selected on a weekly basis. Check and tell your story here!

Little History… Nutella is a much loved family brand created in 1964 thanks to Mr Michele Ferrero; it was based on the recipe for Giandujot developed in 1946 by his father, Pietro Ferrero - confectioner and founder of Ferrero - in Italy's Piedmont area. Nowadays, the popular hazelnut spread with cocoa is available in around 160 countries worldwide.

Nutella will be at Dubai Mall from 18-24 May for a birthday event for fans to celebrate the brand together with its friends.

And to celebrate I wanted to share this lovely Nutella recipe from foodie blog Sips and Spoonfuls, which was recently in Spinneys newsletter.

Chocolate and hazelnut meringue roulade:



Monday, May 5, 2014

Travelling with children tips from InterContinental Hotels & Resorts



Summer is approaching and if you are planning to travel with children, check out this insider guide from InterContinental Hotels & Resorts.

The Insider Guide to Travelling with Children, providing useful advice to make planning enjoyable. It's a handbook from InterContinental insider knowledge and external industry expert opinions from countries across Asia, Middle East and Africa to deliver top travel tips, local insights and exciting itineraries, including suggestions on engaging the young ones from the planning stage.

In addition, the guide features highlights of the new InterContinental Planet Trekkers Children's Menu. Developed by award-winning celebrity chef Theo Randall and leading children's food expert and best-selling international author, Annabel Karmel MBE, the menu was designed specifically for the young InterContinental guests and will feature delicious dishes which embrace flavours, textures, smells and tastes that will take children on an educational voyage around the world, while ensuring an enjoyable and nutritionally balanced meal.

The Insider Guide to Travelling with Children also features advice from award-winning children’s author, Dubai-based Taghred Chandab, who recommends using a guidebook to create a picture based tick sheet for younger children to enrich their travel experience and help them remember the places they have been.

The Insider Guide will be available in English and Arabic in InterContinental hotels and resorts across the Middle East.

To easily download the series of Insider Guides like Travelling in Style and the Perfect Business Dinner, and Travelling with Children visit: www.ihg.com.


Sunday, May 4, 2014

Miracle oil from Palmer's

Let me tell you about my latest skincare obsession: Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula Skin Therapy Oil. I want to believe it's a miracle oil, a multi-purpose skin perfection product! It claims to fight off the most troubling issues, from scars and stretch marks to fine lines and wrinkles.

Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula Skin Therapy Oil is fortified with a host of skin-loving ingredients designed to help protect skin from all types of damage. This preserve-free, lightweight formula contains an exclusive blend of key ingredients. The secret is the unique Rapidermal Absorption Systeme® which helps ingredients penetrate the epidermal layer to deliver targeted benefits without greasiness.

As an expecting mother, I am using it on my body as a preventive treatment against stretch mark and a nourishing antioxidant, thanks to pure Cocoa Butter, Vitamin E, Sesame Oil, Canola Oil and Rosehip Oil. I also really like to apply it on my legs, it spreads and soaks super quickly. Hydration lasts

longer with this oil than most creams and lotions. I heard great stories when used on scars, but I have not used myself for the purpose of fading and healing scars. I will keep in touch and report it's ability to reduce scarring and stretch marks. Consistency is key to it's success I believe.

I am loving the original sweet scent of coco aroma but the new Rosehip scent is nice and light.

Another great reason to purchase Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula Skin Therapy Oil? Palmer's support the fight against Breast Cancer. AED1 from every purchase of the advanced, multi-purpose skin perfection product – both original and Rosehip – going to Breast Cancer Arabia™ Foundation between now and February 2015. Feel GOOD and do GOOD!



Saturday, May 3, 2014

Book Review for aquarius magazine

Don't miss out on Aquarius magazine this month. The May issue offers a great "Baby Supplement", with loads of great tips for mums and mums to be. You will find maternity fashion, real mums stories, fashion for the little ones, experts advices on sleeping and breastfeeding, debate on nursery vs nanny, mum makeover and book reviews.

I had the opportunity to contribute to the book review section: " The Book that changed everything". Here's my full review on The New Contented Little Baby Book by Gina Ford.

"While I was pregnant with my first child, my husband came home one day saying someone recommend us to read this book: The New Contented Little Baby Book by one of the most controversial parenting guru in the UK, Gina Ford. At 5 months pregnant I was actually looking for a book to read and get myself prepared for the arrival of our daughter. I knew I wanted to follow one book only, I was determinate not to read too much stuff and get confused by different methods. As a first time mom I had little idea of routine, breast feeding, sleeping time, I wanted an instruction manual!!
That's exactly what I got, Ford's methods provide an hour-by-hour, week-by-week guide on how to get a new baby into a routine, the book includes feeding and sleeping schedules based on a baby's age. The method claims to create happy and contented babies because their needs for food and sleep are appropriately met and they should sleep for their longest spell at night not during the day. Common sense! It contains so much information, it was overwhelming at first. By the time Luella was born, I was a bit of a dictator with her schedule, following the exact routine. Then I quickly realize I could adapt the method to suit our family better, and it worked. I learned to be flexible because life with a baby hardly ever goes as planned.  I followed the same principles in a looser way, without biting myself up if I was out of  track for a few hours or a day. And it worked!
No parents are really neutral about Gina Ford method you love or hate it. The strict routine is hard work and can be too restrictive for some family. Her method goes against some popular parenting philosophies like demand feeding, as she believes in the necessity of waking a sleeping baby in order to establish a daily routine. It's a choice we made, and it worked for us. I have no regrets, and now 5 months pregnant again, I am ready to do it all over again with our second baby.  
Experienced parents may not benefit from Ford's methods, but  for first-time parents it can be a great help. I believe you and your child will benefit from having structure to your days. I personally was reassured to know what was coming next and for Luella I think it helped her development, to learn what will happen at about the same time and in about the same way each day. It provides comfort and a sense of safety. " Emily Lidén, mum of one and blogger at www.dubaioursandbox.com



To read more book recommendations from eight Dubai mums, check out Aquarius Magazine, May 2014. Currently out.