Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Competition: Cocoa Butter Goodies from Palmers

Something for the whole family! Your chance to win a Palmer give-away! Our old time favourite Cocoa Butter Formula...

Competition time!
Dubai our Sandbox and Palmers has teamed up for your chance to win a Palmers Gift Basket worth AED200.
The basket includes: 
Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Baby Butter (250ml), Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula with Vitamin E (350ml),
Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula for Men (250ml) and a super soft bath towel.

It's easy to participate, all you need to do is:
1/ "Like" the competition post on Dubai our Sandbox Facebook page
2/ Share the contest post with your friends on Facebook
3/ Leave a comment with "DONE" on Facebook
4/ Follow Palmers on Facebook

Winners will be announced via Facebook on Sunday October 5th. Good luck!

Introducing the Foonf! from Clek

Last week we got to try out the "Rolls Royce" of all car seat manufactured in North America:  The Foonf from Clek.

There is so many details and features which make the Foonf so much better and safer then most car seats. I will list some important points but to get the full spectrum you need to check out their website (or view the video below for a good overall understanding).

First of all don't rush to change from rear-facing to forward-facing. In a new policy statement published in the April 2011 issue of Pediatrics, the American Academy of Pediatrics now advises parents to keep toddlers in rear-facing car seats until age two. Check out this good read from parenting.com

Clek recommendations with the Foonf is 14-50 lbs., 25-43”, able to sit upright alone, for rear-facing and 20-65 lbs., 30-49”; age 1 minimum, age 2+ recommended for forward-facing.

Foonf Overview:
- Extended Rear-Facing Installation
Foonf was designed to international best practices for extended rear-facing use, which is to accommodate children in a rear-facing installation until their 4th birthday.

- Rigid Sub-Structure
Foonf is reinforced by a steel and magnesium sub-structure.

- Energy-absorbing foam-lined Headrest connected to frame using steel rods provides maximum head protection in a side-impact collision. Also Energy-Absorbing Foam Layers, on both the inside and outside of the frame protect your child by absorbing energy in a side-impact collision, resulting in less force directly upon your child.

- Anti-Rebound Bar
In Rear-Facing mode, Foonf’s Anti-Rebound bar improves stability by limiting rotation of the child seat, helping protect your child’s head from impact in the case of a collision.

- The Revolutionary REACT™ Safety System
Reducing the forces transmitted to your forward-facing child in a frontal collision.

- Rigid-LATCH Forward-Facing Installation

- Improved Rear-Facing Installation
Unique design improves Rear-Facing installation with an easy-access belt path, small footprint and
- Smooth Recline for comfort

- Crypton® Super Fabric, provide permanent protection against stains, moisture and odor-causing bacteria.

What we think! 
The installation process is describe as easy but, I was glad someone installed for me - did not look so easy! You can install it via seatbelt , via latch or both. What's great, with every foonf purchase you may call the Clek UAE team and schedule a FREE Installation. The technician will make sure the seat is properly installed if you require. Or you can watch the online videos.

- The Foonf looks like the most advanced convertible carseats on the market, with unique, high-tech safety features and exceptional rear-facing weight and height limits. The Latch system is definatelly the safest installation. Buying the Foonf, you know you are getting your money worth, and that's good because it's a bit pricey but so worth it. 

- Luella was not so happy at first, we just moved her out of her car seat last week into using the build-in car booster seat from our new XC60 Volvo (as per the height and weight indications). She obviously felt like she was regressing to "small kid". Quickly the Foonf, became attractive to her as well. Comfort, hight, recline… and it looks good!

- Overall, Foonf offer comfort, safety, convenience and style. It can call o-exist without sacrifice.

ClekUAE LLC the exclusive distributor for Clek products in dubai.
Contact: +971 52 699 4214 or jennifer@clekuae.com
Retail price starts at AED 2,900
also available at Bumble Bee Dubai Mall or mumzworld.com

In the press with Good Magazine... kids friendly diner.

Reipe from a previous Dubai our Sandbox blog post " Diner: spagetthi nests ", 
in the September 2014 issue of Good Magazine
Bon Appetit.

Monday, September 29, 2014

I ♥ scarfs

Check out the 21 difference stylish ways to wear a scarf.
The "knotting cards" by Hermès.

This Mum's life - GoodHouseKeeping mag

"This Mum's life" feature in the September 2014 issue of Good House Keeping Magazine (middleEast). Still pregnant at the time... 

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Natural beauty of Oman: Jabal Akhdar Resort - Eid escape.

How amazing does it look!? Beautiful design hotel in the Sultana of Oman. If you are looking for get away this Eid, you might want to consider Jabal Akhdar (meaning “The Green Mountain” in Arabic).

Experience the serenity of Alila Jabal Akhdar, a beautiful resort I wish to go explore sometime soon. Elevated 2000 metres above sea level, the resort offers unparalleled views of the Al Hajar mountains surrounded by pristine beauty. The perfect venue this Eid for those seeking a cooler getaway with friends or a trip to the Oman mountain ranges with the family.

What we heard?!
In exemplary Omani fashion, guests are warmly welcomed into this stunning property in the lobby with the renowned Omani, sweet ‘Halwa’, traditional local coffee and dates. With activities ranging from exploring the rugged outdoors to lounging on the pool deck with an array of refreshing, complimentary amenities including mocktails, fresh fruit skewers, face-mist, sunblock and cold towels on offer, the hotel ensures the comfort of their guests provides something for everyone.

Whether it is to escape to cooler pastures or to witness nature’s unsurpassed beauty in the architecturally awarded property, Alila Jabal Akhdar caters to couples, adventurers, families and nature lovers. 

What we like or want to try?! A true escape from urban life, we like the eco friendly feel of the hotel, the mix of traditional Omani culture with a modern and sleek elegance. We want to try out the Juniper Restaurant (named after the juniper trees that grow in the highlands of Oman). Diner with a mountain view and a culinary experience from Middle East to the Mediterranean cuisine. Also interested in the beautiful Rose Lounge for sunset of after diner drinks. Would not want to miss out on the Spa either, looks like a treat!

Check out their special offers - here!

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Bargain shopping for Fall

Just had a quick browse at h&m online, need to go the mall and do a little bargain shopping. 
Some cool items from the Fall line and their Premium Quality line. 
Off I go….

Monday, September 22, 2014

Competition time: Win with Big On Children !!!

Have you heard of Big On Children?! The kids store that is committed to bringing customers new and exiting products, that are not available anywhere else in the region. Great for unique and personalised gifts for children. Big On Children’s “My Music My Movie My Name” collection is pioneering in its field. Children become stars of the entire product range from hearing their name in the music to seeing their face in a movie. Now with more than 40,000 names and over 10 languages to choose from, the collection currently encompasses personalised music CDs, DVDs, alarm clocks, growth charts, interactive storybook CDs…

Looking for a gift? The CD is a nice option. Your child’s name will be sung over 60 times in each album. Research shows that name recognition plays a major role in a child’s educational development. Start early and introduce your child to their name through fun, engaging and educational songs. Or a DVD with your child picture appearing throughout the movie. You can also get the Alarm Clock. What better way for your child to start their day than with a cheery song that sings their name? Our unique personalized alarm clocks will ensure that early risers will want to stay in bed till their song starts whilst those who like to slumber late will want to wake up to hear their special song. Another favorite is the Soft Toy with prerecorded lullabies and nursery rhymes. These personalized soft toys will mention your child’s name in a song selected by you! What could be more comforting for your child than snuggling up to a soft toy that actually sings a song especially for them?

Competition time!
Dubai our Sandbox and Big On Children has teamed for your chance to win cool prizes for your child. There is 3 prizes for grab.
1st Prize: Personalized DVD (retail price AED 130)
2nd Prize: Personalized CD (retail price AED 95)
3rd prize: Growth Chart (retail price AED 75)

It's easy to participate, all you need to do is:
1/ "Like" the competition post on Dubai our Sandbox Facebook page 
2/ Share the contest post with your friends on Facebook
3/ Leave a comment below with "DONE"
4/ Follow 
Big On Children on Facebook 

Winners will be announced via Facebook on Thursday September 25th. Good luck!

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Competition! Win a Build A Bear Workshop Gift Voucher

How cute are those furry friends from Build-A-Bear Workshop® - the world’s only global company that offers an interactive make-your-own stuffed animal retail-entertainment experience. Retail price is AED 120

COMPETITION TIME! Here's your chance to win a AED200 gift voucher from Build A Bear Workshop (to be redeem in any store of BABW within UAE), it's easy!

1/ "Like" the competition post on Dubai our Sandbox Facebook page 
2/ Share the contest post with your friends on Facebook
3/ Leave a comment below with "DONE"
4/ Follow Build A Bear Workshop on Facebook 

The Contest will close Sunday 28th of September 2014,  and winner will be announced that day, via Facebook.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

A few things...

♥ New in town, The New York based dessert bar, has now landed in Dubai. The casual eatery brings a new experience to Dubai with a three-course signature dessert bar menu. Open from 11am daily, Chikalicious will be serving for dine in, takeaway or delivery. Chikalicious offers two concepts, The Dessert Club, which offers a more casual experience much like a chic neighborhood bakery but with a refined twist of award-winning baked goods ready to eat. The second concept is The Dessert Bar, where guests are invited to indulge in a three-course dessert dining experience, starting with an amuse, choice of dessert as a main course and then Petits Fours to finish. This is a truly unique experience.

Chikalicious staple treats; from Dough’Ssants, cookies, Bun Chika Bun Bun’s and Crème Brulee to name few this cabinet will leave even the most savory-toothed transfixed.
Chikalicious at Village Mall, Jumeirah 1. Facebook.com/chikaliciousme. See you there…

♥ We all know Award-winning JustKidding the exciting retail store concept for modern, predominantly first- time parents. We love the comprehensive range of internationally acclaimed, high quality, high-end products for newborns, young children and pregnant mothers. They also offer free special events in store. This October, first time mom don't miss out "Breastfeeding Support Group" meets every first Monday of the month in JustKidding Al Safa store, morning tea is provided. 6th October 2014, from 10am-12noon, Tel: 04-3466050, support@justkidding.zendesk.com.

Another fun event on 27th October 2014 " Halloween Spectacular ", Free Photos with your little ones in the Halloween themed studio. Costumes provided. From 10AM till 2pm, JustKidding Gold & Diamond Park store.

♥ Cute DIY little turban for your little one - thesaraproject.com

♥ I scream for Ice Cream, check out Fortnum & Mason. If you want to treat yourself to something special visit The Parlour and tried out the large range of Ice Creams and Sundaes to tickle your taste buds. The Parlour has all the much-loved ice cream classics and lots of exciting new flavours, presented in a funky space that guarantees you will come back for more! The Parlour does not just celebrate all things ice cream though; gourmets can choose from Fortnum’s wide selection of English favourites such as pastries, crumpets, and muffins. Fortnum & Mason experience is further enhanced by the magnificent view of The Burj Khalifa from The Parlour.

♥ The Ripe market is back for a new season at a new location! Ripe is the leading provider of fresh, seasonal and organic fruits and veggies from local UAE farms will be stating a new season at Zabeel Park, gate 1, from October 10th, from 9am to 2pm, every Friday! So excited! 

♥ We love Pomme!  Lovely, dreamy and playful handmade furniture for children aged 0 to 10 years old, inspired by the fantasy world of children. This October, checkout their POP-UP Store at Scandinavian concept Design Tales starting the 18th of October. 

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Secrets Fine Food : Online gourmet grocery

Looking for some special treats, some gourmet food from Europe and delivered right to your doorstep. Look no longer and visit secretsfinefood.com, the lovely website offer customized services to those who have a common passion for unique, rare and gourmet delicacies: a selection of artisan products - free-range chicken, farm cheese from France, burrata from Italy, seasonal fruits and vegetables, truffle, oscietra caviar, wagyu beef, foie gras and much more. Delivery to your door step, bespoke hampers, customized advice and cooking workshops at home by French fine food lovers.

Also on secretsfinefood.com, great tips and recipes for you to try in your kitchen. Prepare to get hungry! Check out facebook.com/SecretsFineFood

Monday, September 15, 2014

Mountain Buggy Fitness – Get back in shape after baby's arrival

Here's the class, I will be trying out soon (after my 6 weeks post delivery check up with my Dr) and I can't wait to get back in shape thanks to Olivia Johnson Personal Trainer specializing in Pre and Post Natal fitness. Olivia will ensure you get the best results while having lots of fun with a bunch of like minded mums by your side.
Mountain Buggy Fitness is about "getting out there and being active" whilst still being with your little one. Having a child doesn't need to be a restriction to fitness and your well being. "

Mountain Buggy Fitness Program
The classes will be an hour long class consisting of warm up, stretching to improve flexibility, cardiovascular and strength exercises, core and pelvic floor strengthening exercises.

This program has been developed specifically for women who have had babies to regain their pre pregnancy body composition and fitness, with particular focus on strengthening the core, toning up the bum and thighs, improving strength and muscle tone on the shoulders and arms. Exercising with the buggy adds additional resistance, which tones the upper body and shoulders. It's also much more fun to exercise in the fresh air, make friends and know you are giving your baby fresh air too.

During the week there will be two classes dedicated to Boot camp
This class with be 60 minutes and is targeted at building fitness and body tone which has been reduced through pregnancy. The class is especially for Mum baby and buggy and consist of:
Warm up power walk or jog when fitness allows – 10 minutes
Interval boot camp style training to burn fat and tone and sculpt the body including exercises such as: squats, step ups, lunges, burpee’s, press up and the resistance bands – 30 minutes
Core strengthening and pelvic floor exercises – 10 minutes
Cool down, stretching to improve and restore flexibility – 10 minutes

Saturday morning classes will be a Mountain Buggy running class where the whole family can enjoy. This is a great opportunity for a family run with beautiful views of the beach and sea and the opportunity to go for a swim after class! This is a favourite with dads too! This class is 60 minutes long combining running with strengthening, toning and flexibility. Warm up jog with buggy and pre stretch 10 minutes. Core run with buggy of approx. 20 minutes
Toning and strengthening exercises targeting the legs and core such as squat jumps, bunny hops, single leg squats and plank – 20 minutes. Cool down and stretches to improve flexibility and relax the body after the workout – 10 minutes

Price and Location:
AED 300 for 6 classes and receive a FREE Mountain Buggy Water Bottle
AED 500 for 12 classes and receive a FREE Mountain Buggy Pram Hang Bag filled with goodies
Location and Timings: Starting from October 2014 the timings will be:
Every Saturday @ 8.00am at Jumeriah Beach new running track (Kite Beach)
Every Monday @ 8.30 am Dubai Marina – Beach front outside Marina Mall
Every Wednesday @ 8.30 am Palm Park under the mono rail meet at the main car park

For more information on classes please contact:
Olivia Johnson of Ultra Sports +971 050 141 1766

Sunday, September 14, 2014

I ♥ my jeans - bye-bye pregnancy

Can't wait to wear my jeans! All of them, skinny, boyfriends, flared…. 
#postdelivery #byebyepregnancy #getmybodyback #fallweather #lovemyjeans

Something to read: 

Josefin love to cosy up in her Boba Wrap

Loving my Boba Wrap! This is one item I did not use with Luella, and I missed out!

The Boba Wrap Baby Carrier (which was once called the Sleepy Wrap) is suppose to be a good option for baby carrier beginner — easy to use and comfortable for the baby. There are no closures, snaps, buttons etc— just one long stretch of material and it is suitable for babies from 0-18 months. Personally I don't thinking you would caring your little one this way past 12 months... The obvious advantage of the Boba Wrap is the closeness you get with your baby. A real snuggle, cosy, comfy and reassuring nest for your precious one while keeping your hands free.

The technique used to wrap the baby is not simple at first but after a couple of try you got it and its easy. You can view the video on how to wear to figure it out. Once you have the Boba Wrap on correctly, you put your baby inside pretty easily. You carry them in the front so that they’re head is below your chin.

Fabric is really soft, comfy, stretchy and lightweight so your child is just an extension of your outfit. I will definitely use the Boba Wrap as a carrier around the house, quick trips around town, school pick ups. It has a good back support but for longer time and distance I will probably stick with my Baby Borjn carrier.

The Boba Wrap and many more cool items are available at babysouk.com (new website launching this October). Boba Wrap retail price: AED185. Thumbs up!!

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Comfort for you and baby with "My Breast Friend Nursing Pillow

Here's another baby item that I did not use with my first child. I am quite minimal in my need to buy baby stuff. Five years ago while breastfeeding Luella I used a cushion to provide support while feeding her. It was not the best but it worked out just fine. Actually, if I think of it I did get uncomfortable and some back pain but as a first time mom I did not know any better...

This time around, while using My Brest Friend nursing pillow (bit of a silly name, right?), I realise the difference and what I have missed out! The pillow was designed to properly support mom and baby during breastfeeding. The clever cushion fully wrap around the body providing support, comfort and security. So you don't have to constantly readjust, it make the process of correct latch on easier. Baby lay comfortably on the firm surface while you are well supported on your back and have a place to rest your elbow and arms, avoiding shoulder pain and promote a good posture to prevent sore back and neck . The adjustable straps can be adjusted according to the ease of your child and you. This nursing pillow is also very easy to clean, thanks to it's removable cover. One more feature: a small pocket. Not sure what to use it for?! But if you need it, there is one... to keep little accessories.

My breast friend nursing pillow definitely made my breast-feeding experience more comfortable, less tiring this time around.

Babysouk.com carries a large selection of My Breast Friend Nursing Pillow, in different colors and designs. Retail price for the original pillow is AED199, check out babysouk.com for more info and special offer.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Back to School Labels

Looking for personalized name labels for the new school year, I recommend essmak.com. Those high quality name stickers are ideal solution for personalizing all types of belongings.

The friendly and easy to use website will allow to choose difference options "name labels", "clothing labels", "safety labels" and more.

The different value packs are great package deals with a good selections from "Back to school pack", "Starter pack", "Nursery Time pack"or "Clever Closet pack". You are sure to find something that will work for you and the children need.

Check it out online and start customizing your labels with your choice of colors, fonts and icons. Easy! For price and more details visit: essmak.com.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Belly Bandit line: Miracle in a box for mum to be

I find out about Belly Bandit brand at the end of my pregnancy, a bit late to fully try out and enjoy some of the pregnancy items like Upsie Belly or Flawless Belly but just on time to get the miracle compressing belt to help me get back in shape post pregnancy. 

Belly Bandit line offers high-performance products - tighter, lighter, stronger, longer, and stay in place to cover and target your belly, waist and hips. Created with a unique propriety Stretch and Compress fabrics. Snug, smooth and slimming, Belly Bandit's® universally perfect fit will help woman look and feel good, in and out of clothing during and after pregnancy.
During my hospital stay, I met with a physiotherapy regarding my post natal recovery and we discussed the compression belt. She agreed it will be helpful to wear the belt in conjunction with some gentle exercises proscribed by your physiotherapist, in order to strengthened some of the stretched muscles. So don't forget, to achieve long term and safe results practice the correct lower belly exercises and pelvic floor exercises and always check with your practitioner to make sure. 

One of their best selling item is Bamboo Belly Bandit, an update version of the original Belly Bandit belt (eco version, slightly more expensive but so worth it!). This tummy tucker in Bamboo fabric is very soft to the skin while the specialized graded elastic helps to aid in tightening the belly, minimizing stretch marks and supporting core muscle structure. This is definitely a perfect balance of outstanding comfort and compression. I have been wearing the Bamboo Belly Bandit from day 1 (it was packed in my hospital bag - last minute add on). I believe after just a few day post delivery, it has help accelerates healing, give me some back support and smooth things out… In the long run, if used daily for 6 to 8 weeks with correct exercises as well, I will hopefully get back to a pre-pregnancy look. I will make sure to update you on the result!

My other favorite is the Mother Tucker Nursing Tank, it's the ultimate nursing compression top, I love wearing it! It has been engineered to offer exceptional under wire-free support, slide-over cups for discreet nursing access, and not one, but three strategic zones of compression to flatten your belly, tame muffin top and battle back bulge. It is very soft and comfy (but yes tight!). I think its a good complement to the Belly Bandit compression belt. A good option to wear when you go out as a shape wear under garment and a very convenient nursing top without snaps or flaps. The Mother Tucker should help with postpartum stretch marks by containing loose skin, as well as perfect your posture. This secret weapon is a bit pricey but works to make you feel a little more glamourous… and that's priceless.

 Next on my list The Mother Tucker Leggins: "smooth your tummy and thighs while giving your butt that added boost. A wardrobe essential that shapes and supports you from the waist down!" Just what I need! And I am gonna need all the help I can get…

Check out the large range of Belly Bandit products  available at K-Lynn stores across the UAE.
Belly Bandit Original retail value: AED265
Belly Bandit Bamboo or Couture  retail value: AED365
Mother Tucker Nursing Tank  retail value: AED425

Monday, September 1, 2014

Love for two

Today is my due date! As the arrival of our second child is now imminent, I have been wondering how can I love this child as much as our first one! Luella has changed our life in amazing ways, to me, she is the meaning of love – and life. I know I will dearly love my new baby, there is no question about it, but the concept of loving again and as much has not settled in yet.

This morning, I came across this text from unknown author, it put things in perspective. I can't wait to meet our new baby, to start this new phase of our life together as a family.

" I walk along holding your 2-year-old hand, basking in the glow of our magical relationship. Suddenly I feel a kick from within, as if to remind me that our time alone is limited. And I wonder: how could I ever love another child as I love you?

Then he is born, and I watch you. I watch the pain you feel at having to share me as you’ve never shared me before.

I hear you telling me in your own way, “Please love only me”. And I hear myself telling you in mine, “I can’t”, knowing, in fact, that I never can again.

You cry. I cry with you. I almost see our new baby as an intruder on the precious relationship we once shared. A relationship we can never quite have again.

But then, barely noticing, I find myself attached to that new being, and feeling almost guilty. I’m afraid to let you see me enjoying him, as though I am betraying you.

But then I notice your resentment change, first to curiosity, then to protectiveness, finally to genuine affection.

More days pass, and we are settling into a new routine. The memory of days with just the two of us is fading fast.

But something else is replacing those wonderful times we shared, just we two. There are new times – only now, we are three. I watch the love between you grow, the way you look at each other, touch each other.

I watch how he adores you – as I have for so long. I see how excited you are by each of his new accomplishments. And I begin to realize that I haven’t taken something from you, I’ve given something to you. I notice that I am no longer afraid to share my love openly with both of you.

I find that my love for each of you is as different as you are, but equally strong. And my question is finally answered, to my amazement. Yes, I can love another child as much as I love you – only differently.

And although I realize that you may have to share my time, I now know you’ll never share my love. There’s enough of that for both of you – you each have your own supply.

I love you – both. And I thank you both for blessing my life."

Unknown author, photo pinterest