Thursday, 17 April 2014

Skiing as a Family

Here are a few of my favourite photos from our recent ski holiday to Puy St Vincent with Snowbizz.  It was sunny, snowy, energizing and exhausting all at the same time and all four of us had such a brilliant week.

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

My Samsung Galaxy Phone

I love my camera, and ever since taking the plunge last October and investing in a DSLR, I haven't looked back.  I set up little photo shoots, I follow the boys round trying to capture them unawares and I will one day master the stealth shot.  I wouldn't be without it and I can really see that my photography has improved thanks to my shiny new equipment.

This doesn't change the fact that 90% of my photos are still taken with my trusty camera phone.  A DSLR is not always practical and it certainly doesn't fit in my pocket, but my phone is never far, and thanks to that I have some photos I will treasure forever.  I currently have the Samsung Galaxy S4 and the camera on it is fantastic, but the S5 has an auto focus that should put an end to the blurry photos of fast moving toddlers and with 16  megapixels, it doesn't matter if the best photo I take is on my camera, as the quality will be amazing.

Not only that, but the Samsung Galaxy S5 has some amazing technology - combine the pedometer app with the new Gear, and I can prove once and for all that I work very hard during the day! I don't think the bloke appreciates quite how much time I spend chasing round the troublesome twosome, but counting my steps and monitoring my day will show him that I really don't sit around eating biscuits as much as he thinks I do!

And speaking of the little ones, the new fingerprint technology should mean I never have to change the language back to English, apologise for sending messages that read kjdgdlfgdfkjgd or wake up at half past 2 thanks to someone setting my alarm!

All of these photos were taken on my Samsung Galaxy S4 and I would love to win the new S5 and take even better shots! I am entering this competition to win one

Monday, 7 April 2014

Travelling with Toddlers

Toddlers are not known for being easy in any department, and with two under three, you would be forgiven for thinking that holidays are more stress than they are worth.  What we have found is the complete opposite and actually some time away, a break from routine and daily stress means relaxed parents and relaxed toddlers too.  Here are my top 5 tips for travelling with toddlers

1) Relax. 

They can totally sense fear and they play on it.  It isn't always easy when your flight landed an hour ago and you are still waiting for your luggage (us yesterday!), but if you can't change it then don't try.  Hit the vending machine for something sugary, use your hand luggage as a pillow and relax, chances are the kids will too.

Thank goodness for Gatwick airports pushchair service!

2) Don't take too many toys.

It is tempting to pack all their favourite games and puzzles to keep them occupied, and we have been guilty of taking an entire suitcase full of their things from home.  As it turned out, one child was happy to read Dear Zoo to himself for nearly two hours straight, whilst the other was mostly interested in climbing on things.  Taking a couple of well chosen favourites is definitely wise, but children are great at making their own fun, so even without their beloved train tracks, they will still have fun.

All this monkey needed was a pushchair basket to climb in and out of!

3) Don't worry about the mess.

With the space you have saved on toys, take plenty of spare tops, as there is nothing quite like a holiday to make you more relaxed with cleanliness and more likely to dish out the ice creams.  Toddlers have no concept of 'keep clean, you look lovely in that outfit', and will most likely drip ice cream/the blue lollipop you stupidly gave into all over themselves.  Relax, change them and finish those sticky sweet treats.

4)  If you can't beat them, join them.

Sometimes being an adult is great fun, but there are times when it is best to forget about responsibility and etiquette and join in with whatever silly games the little ones want to play.  It will not only leave you giggling all day, but the toddlers find it hilarious too.  Sometimes you have to hop all the way down the high street, some times it is building a snowman, but follow their lead.

Is there anything quite as fun as sliding down a big hill on your bum?

5)  Don't force the photos

Although it is lovely to have everything captured beautifully on camera, toddlers tend to have other ideas that involve either running away screaming or pulling funny faces.  As much as I try to get those lovely candid natural shots (and I do have a few), most of mine seem to come out with rather 'interesting' expressions.  I do have some beautiful shots of the scenery though - that was much happier to stay still!

If you are looking to travel with toddlers soon, then make sure you are fully prepared with passports, sugary snacks and a sense of humour, that is all you really need.

 This post is an entry in the Mark Warner Blogger Competition