Tuesday, 28 February 2017

Baebox - A Positive Subscription Box for Girls

For several months now, Ruby has been receiving Baebox subscription boxes. These monthly boxes are the trend at the moment and you can sign up to have everything from coffee, chocolate, books and  make-up delivered as adults, but as far as I know Baebox is one of a kind.  Aimed initially at tween girls from the ages of 8-12, they have now branched out into the teen market offering packages for girls from 13-15 and there's even a boys version on the horizon.  

Why are they different?  Well, because they follow the same aspirations as many modern parents have for their daughters and promote positive, motivational and inspirational messages.  There's so many more worries in the modern world when it comes to bringing up children and concern for emotional wellbeing is right up there.  With pressure about body-image coming from all angles - the media, advertising and the music industry right through to people airbrushing their lives on social media - it's hard for girls nowadays to feel comfortable about who they are.  Add to that the fact that we're still even now, trying to break the glass ceiling and contending with sexism and stereotyping in all aspects from subject choices at school, sport and ultimately career choices and it's a tough old world!

Baebox, as well as delivering age-appropriate treats which are not all about beauty and fashion, also delivers something much more important.  It delivers confidence.

Ruby's room is now full of little affirmations, hanging plaques and postcards with motivational message on.  And you know what?  I really think it's starting to make a difference.

I'm fairly sure I can't put it all down to the wonders of Baebox, but I think it's certainly helping and the change in Ruby's self-esteem and confidence is clear to see.  She's started doing much more sport - she's signed up to do a fencing course at school and she's enrolled for her indoor climbing certificate at the local leisure centre.  To see her scaling up a 10 metre high wall every week fills me with pride.  She's just been chosen to represent her school in a swimming gala and she's been elected to the Eco Council.  She's even joined a drama club and now sings and dances in front of audiences - something I never thought I'd see!

So, as a parent, you can perhaps see why I love Baebox so much.  But Ruby adores it too.  Each month, she eagerly awaits her delivery.  Like any child, she loves getting her own mail, and who wouldn't want a box of treats in the post?  It gives her something to look forward to, and she really enjoys all the messages inside the box.

Her confidence has grown so much, she's even decided she'd like to do her own Youtube videos.  This is one of her first attempts, and while she can see there's lots she can improve on, she's determined to do it all by herself and learn as she goes.

I'm so proud of her, and grateful to Baebox for giving her that confidence boost.

Each month's box contains different items.  This month you can see, was an organiser which is already being used to plan her activities and homework, a very cool water bottle which went straight to school with the very next day, an emoji lip balm (anything emoji is just fine with her!), some chocolate - a rare treat in the boxes, but it is for Easter - and a wall-hanging sign which went up in her room right away.  Previous months have included keepsake tins, money boxes, a yoyo, stationery and stickers.  The emphasis is very much away from hair and make-up which I think is completely right for this age.

She loves the styling, the packaging and of course the excitement of the postwoman delivering her mail. Occasionally Ruby gets something in her box which she isn't keen on, but that's to be expected I think - you can't please everyone all of the time!  She's keen to move up to the Teen box, but she's only 9 so I think there's plenty of time for that yet!

Baeboxes are great as gift ideas and you can either buy them as a one-off or sign up to a subscription for 3, 6 or 12 months.  Thank you Team Baebox for such a wonderful idea.

Disclosure: We were gifted a trial run of boxes but all opinions are our own.

Monday, 27 February 2017

DIY Gifts for your Dog

Nothing says 'I love you' like a homemade gift and the same applies for canines as it does for humans!  I've rounded up some of my favourites from the net so you can rustle up the perfect present for your pooch for their birthday or pin for later on for Christmas. Or let's face it, we love them so much why not just treat them?!

1. Homemade Peanut Butter Biscuits.

Dogs adore peanut butter, and these treats are easy to make and make a lovely gift, displayed in an attractive jar.  You can afford to make your whole dog-walking group some!

Or try this different, but equally delicious sounding recipe from Parent-Shaped.

Image Credit: Parent Shaped
2. Dog Walking Station.

You could go one step further, and load up your treats and other dog-walking essentials in this great DIY lead station from Dog Buddy. This is definitely on my list to have a go at.

3. Hardwearing Rope Toy.

Shop bought dog toys are expensive and generally don't last long, so try your hand at making this long-life rope toy.

Image Credit: Hands Occupied
4. A stylish dog bed 

For the dog with a spirit of adventure, get your DIY on with this fabulous bed from a vintage suitcase.  Max and Fodder shows you how.

Image credit: Mox and Fodder

5. Moisturising dog shampoo

This gorgeous shampoo uses natural ingredients and coconut oil to keep the coat in tip-top condition. A lovely treat to make for your pooch which will keep them squeaky clean.

Image credit: First Home Love Life 

What will you make for your hound? Let me know why they deserve a treat.