UK Parenting, Lifestyle & Beauty Blog. Mum to Darcy

Monday, 17 December 2018

Lapland Letters

This time of year is so exciting and I get so much more joy out of it now than I ever have purely because of Darcy. I am always looking for more ways to make Christmas more magical for her, because seeing there little faces light up is just everything! 
Lapland Letters really do this because not only do you get a lovely letter personalised to your child, you can also add on little magical extras too which include a Santa Stop Here Poster, Colouring Activity Sheets, Good Child Certificate & Wishing Stars. 
It makes for some lovely activities for Christmas Eve too so i'm going to pop them in her Christmas Eve box which should be exciting.
Like I said above the letter is personalised to your child so you can tell them their best friends name and add a little note at the bottom, I decided to tell them about Darcys recent outbreak of chicken pox because I felt like she would be amazed at how Father Christmas knew and that she was! I was so impressed in the envelope too as it was super realistic! A letter costs just £5.95 and with the magical extras I described above it's an extra £2.95 which I think is great value when you know how much they're going to enjoy it! Overall I was so pleased with this and will definitely be ordering one next year!


*This was a collaborative post with Lapland Letters*

Thursday, 13 December 2018

Win Ghost Perfume With Wow Free Stuff

With Christmas just around the corner, still with lots of presents to buy? WOW FreeStuff are offering you a chance to win Ghost Perfume. Why not keep it as a present for yourself or have you got a relative you know would love this? Besides, you've got to be in it to win it!

I've smelt the fragrance myself and it smells divine! I'd love for one of you to win it so please enter and let me know if you do!

To enter the competition all you have to do is click the link here Wow FreeStuff and like the facebook page & enter your name and email address, super simple!



Monday, 10 December 2018

Small Business Monday - Made By Me Craft Parties

Source: Made By Me Craft Parties

I recently realised that there wasn't enough avenues out there for small businesses to be seen. Now days you need a huge amount of money to spend on marketing and advertising which seems hard when you're trying to make money. I decided to make it a feature on my blog from now on, that every Monday I will feature a small business in the hope that it will help them in some way.
It may not seem much but sharing is caring so please show your friends if it seems like a business they'd like! 
This week I have an amazing business called Made By Me Craft Parties. As soon as I saw this, I just knew I had to pop it on here as it's such a great idea! What child doesn't love crafting, I know my daughter would love this.
The amazing thing is that she doesn't stop at childrens parties, she caters for all ages and there is a party for everyone. Such a cool idea!

Here is a back story behind Made By Me Craft Parties:

My name is Lexy and I run Made By Me Craft Parties, my passion is to create fun, beautiful and personalised craft parties for children, teens and adults.  I've run craft parties for birthdays. weddings, 'mummy' get togethers, team building days, yoga retreats, blogger events and well being sessions. 

My most popular party for younger kids is the Craft Mania party, while the older girls enjoy the Spa of Our Own party.  Other popular themes are fairy, pony and balloon parties and Stationery Crazy, but a big part of my business is being able to personalise parties - so if a child wants a unicorn themed craft party, I can arrange for sparkly horns, flowers and ears to be attached to tote bags, note books or even mini hot air balloons (true story).

I've always been creative, but I was happy working at the Student's Union at Bournemouth University until my children came along.  Then everything changed, I didn't want to work 5 days a week and it turned out that working part time on a job you used to throw your heart and soul into isn't very easy!  When Izzy (my firstborn) was 9 months old, I set up a small business selling rubber stamps and accessories and running adult card making classes (I did this as well as working at the Uni).  

It wan't until my daughter turned 4 years old that my party planning skills surfaced!  I absolutely love a theme and the first proper party I did for Izzy was a Minnie Mouse party - cue lots of black mouse ear making!  Friends began to comment that I should run kids parties as a business and before long, customers of my card classes started requesting kids craft parties.  

After the third friend asked me about a craft party, I decided to do a bit of research and found a gap in the market, so Made By Me Craft Parties was born.  I was found my card classes quite stressful and time consuming and I didn't particularly enjoy the selling aspect.  A year after my son (Austin) was born, I decided to hand in my notice to the Uni and concentrate on Made By Me.  

It wasn't as easy decision to leave the University, but I found working 3 long days a week with 2 young children, a husband who worked very longs hours (meaning, morning and evening routines were all on me Monday - Friday and we didn't have any family near by to call on for help -  it was all a bit stressful.  The trigger point was when I found myself on the landing at home with both children crying at 6pm in the evening, not knowing who to sort out first.  We were all hungry, we were all tired and miserable and I wasn't loving my job, not to mention child care costs!  I felt like I didn't want to miss out being there for Izzy in her first year at school or watching my babies grow up, so I left my Uni job in October 2014.

I love running my business - I decide what to do, how to do it and I can choose my hours.  I'm there for (most) school drop offs and pick ups, most of the school holidays, I can attend the assemblies and help at school trips.  I do work some weekends, but I balance it so it's not every weekend and I involve the kids in my business as much as possible - after all, they're my chief testers for new craft party ideas and activities!  

Negative points about running a small business, it can get lonely, but I do lots of networking and co-working.  It can be overwhelming and hard to make business decisions, but I have a business coach and lots of lovely fellow small businesses to turn to for advice and support.  Most of all I have THE MOST supportive husband, children, family, friends and customers, they're a pretty awesome bunch!

I've had both children at school for a year now and my business is going from strength to strength.  This year's highlights include, 
  • Winning Best Creative Business at the Devon and Dorset Successful Women in Business Awards in May,
  • Being asked to run craft activities at a blogger event in the summer for the TV show Oddbods.
  • Starting up toddler classes called Mini Makes and Bakes with the wonderful Biscuits By Sarah B.  We run 30 minutes of crafting and 30 minutes of biscuit decorating and they have been very popular. 
 I'm now deciding where I want Made by Me Craft Parties to go in 2019 and I'm really excited to see what happens! 

Source: Made By Me Craft Parties

It's amazing to see that her business is getting stronger and stronger and what an inspirational lady juggling being both a mum and a successful business woman! I really hope you'll go over and have a look at her website.

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