MumsontheBlog loves the Babymel Spring/Summer 2013 styles

Just a quick post to show you the gorgeous new range of changing bags from Babymel. Our editor, Emily, is in love with the stylish boathouse blue striped satchel. What do you think?

All Babymel bags are equipped with built in stroller-straps, wipe-clean linings, padded changing mats and insulated bottle holders and feature original prints. Prices range from £42- £60.  Someone get us to the beach!

Kids flown the nest? Retrocycling could leave you £735 better off

Do you have a classic Furby in the loft?

It’s a cliche, but I know that when I moved out, I started clean and minimalist and left the bulk of my prized possessions cluttering my mum’s house. So did all three of my siblings. Eventually, my mum’s house was bursting with deserted boxes and bags that none of us wanted to collect, but none of us wanted to throw out.

Something had to give, so one day my mum declared she was having a clear out. We came, we took what we genuinely wanted, and all the rest went up for sale, to the charity shop, or in the bin. It took about a month, but suddenly my mum had a house again, not a well equipped storage unit.

And it turns out this isn’t an uncommon tale. According to research from Lloyds TSB Insurance,  nearly three quarters (73%) of parents are left to look after their children’s possessions after they move out. These items add up to an average of £735, and can often languish untouched for up to 20 years.

Tim Downes, senior claims manager, Lloyds TSB Insurance, said:

“Items that have been gifts in the past can sometimes hold more value than they did when first opened, so it is worth checking, in case they have become valuable collectors’ items that could generate some extra cash for the start of the year.

“January clear-outs provide an opportunity for the family to take a trip down memory lane while organising the home. To start off on the right foot, remember to notify your insurer of any valuable new additions to ensure you are adequately covered.”

Dr Kairen Cullen, chartered educational psychologist, said:

“Hoarding items for longer than required could be a sign of a bigger issue, yet ignoring the problem for another year is rarely the best way to address the situation.

“People can hold on to objects that give them a sense of safety and well-being. Taking steps to clear out unnecessary items can help us start the New Year with a new sense of purpose, while benefiting from the positive feelings associated with finding their items a better home and starting afresh.”

Feeling inspired? Here’s a list of the most popular ‘retrocyclables’ and what they could be worth:

Old toys (80%)

  • Transformers G1 Optimus Prime (£70)
  • Original Furby (1998) (£49)
  • Barbie Camper Van (£68.99)
  • Tracy Island (£30)
  • Original Buzz Lightyear action figure (£54.99)
  • Original Twister game (1966) (£21)

Books (80%)

  • Beatrix Potter: World of Peter Rabbit collection (£40)
  • Encyclopaedia Britannica 1995 – 23 book, complete set (£99)

Clothes (61%)

  • Original Nike Air Jordans (1985) (£1,257)
  • Original United Colors of Benetton sweatshirt (£22)

Music (46%)

  • Now That’s What I Call Music Volume 1, vinyl (£22)
  • Signed framed WHAM promo LP ‘Fantastic’ (£195)

Sports/hobbies equipment (44%)

  • Andre Agassi junior tennis racket (£22.49)
  • Fisher Price children’s Grow With Me rollerskates (£25)

Gadgets/technology equipment (34%)

  • Nintendo Original Gameboy, plus four games and accessories (£49.99)
  • Acorn BBC micro-computer (£54)
  • Sega Master System II console with 14 Games Bundle (£39.99)

So, what could you gain when you clear out the clutter?

Win a Hostess electric milk frother worth £49.99 and a host of Yeo Valley goodies

Win a milk frother and Yeo Valley goodies

Yeo Valley, the British family-run dairy company, is launching a brand new on pack offer available with all 1 and 2 litre bottles of Organic Whole, Semi-Skimmed and Skimmed Milk.

From January, Yeo Valley are offering the chance to win a Hostess electric milk frother worth £49.99 with every purchase. To celebrate, we have one of these fantastic appliances to give away to Mums on the Blog readers.

Perfect for frothing up a cappuccino, whisking a hot chocolate or mixing a milkshake, these Hostess milk frothers come with both a stirrer and a frother function for hot and cold drinks.

What’s more, the winner will also receive a goody bag filled with delicious Yeo Valley products from rice pudding to fridge staples such as yeogurts, butter and cream.

Produced on the Yeo Valley farm in the heart of the Mendip Hills, Yeo Valley Organic Milk comes from its own herd of pedigree British Friesian cows and farms from the Somerset based cooperative, OMSCo, with whom Yeo Valley ethically trade. Yeo Valley is run by the Mead family who put real love and attention into making delicious dairy products and who go the extra country mile when it comes to keeping their land and livestock healthy – resulting in great tasting Yeo Valley products.

For more information about Yeo Valley’s Organic Milk visit: www.yeovalley.co.uk

How to enter

To enter, just comment (using the ‘email address’ option) below telling us how you like your milk.

Terms: UK only entrants. One entry per person. Giveaway closes 11.59pm 31/01/13. The prize is being provided and will be fulfilled by Yeo Valley. Winner will be selected at random using random.org. Winner will be notified by email. A reply is required within 48 hours or a new winner may be chosen. No cash alternative. No payment was received for this post.

Meet Jennifer Bath aka jbmumofone (parent blogger profile)

Jennifer Bath aka jbmumofone

Jennifer Bath aka jbmumofone

Parent bloggers share valuable insights about family. Sometimes sad, sometimes funny, often inspiring. They also create, challenge, share ideas, and even drive social and political change.

At Mums on the Blog, we’re really enjoying featuring some of the amazing UK mums and dads who have fantastic parenting blogs.

This week, we have the gorgeous Jennifer Bath aka jbmumofone.

Hi Jennifer! What is your blog about and what topics does it cover?

Blogging about me and my life as a working mum of one, with another now on the way! My blog is full of ramblings about parenting, wine, battles with the baby-weight, a little bit of very basic craft and some good old nonsense. I also love taking photos of just about anything.

Tell us a little about yourself – the person behing the blog…

I am thirty……something. I work part-time as an optometrist for a laser eye surgery company and part-time as a mum to my two year old son. Baby number two due in early July 2013. I have recently discovered the joy of sewing/quilting though am currently still rather hopeless. I not so recently discovered the joy of wine.

Still thinking about your own blog, what are your three favourite or most successful blog posts and why? (please include links)

How to make a dinosaur-hoodie in three easy steps

This was my first ever sewing project and it appears to have gone down a storm!

Let them eat cake, or just a boatload of Petits Filous?

This parenting dilemma seemed to ring true with a lot of my readers.

Ode to a new mum

I wrote this just as I was getting over the rather traumatic birth of my son.

What are your three favourite blogs at the moment and why? (please include links)

A Mummy Too

I love this blog although it always seems to make me hungry. Emily is always full of inspiration for really simple but fun things to do with my little boy and has got me through many a rainy week indoors with my sanity intact. [editor's note: *blush*]

Yellow Days

Another parenting blog that again is often full of great advice. Cat also regularly gives away lots of lovely stuff on her blog so am still hoping to win something lovely over there one day!

Babberblog

My favourite daddy blogger on the block. A bit of a grumpy-lefty sometimes which always makes me giggle but an absolute delight to read.

I should also state that I know all three of these bloggers in real life and they are truly awesome folks.

Our thanks to Jennifer, and if you are thirsty for more from jbmumofone, you can also find her on Facebook and Twitter.

If you’re a parent blogger and would like to be profiled, please fill in the form here.

Meet Liz Weston aka Cambridge Mummy (parent blogger profile)

Liz Weston

Parent bloggers share valuable insights about family. Sometimes sad, sometimes funny, often inspiring. They also create, challenge, share ideas, and even drive social and political change.

At Mums on the Blog, we’re launching a new feature where we profile some of the amazing UK mums and dads who have fantastic parenting blogs.

We’re kicking off with the fabulous Liz Weston aka Cambridge Mummy.

Hi Liz! What is your blog about and what topics does it cover?

The Cambridge Mummy blog is all about life as a full time, self employed, working woman, with two sons at primary school and one marriage to Lovely Bloke. To finish this description, feel free to mentally insert the usual cliche’s here about working mummy guilt, juggling balls and being on a journey of re discovery once you’ve had your babies, got your job sorted and are “finding your groove again”.

Tell us a little about yourself – the person behing the blog…

I’m Liz Weston. By day, I’m a social media, PR and comms bird who also owns a publishing business. By night, I’m a mum of two, wife, daughter, sister, friend, volunteer and lots more than I can’t remember….

Still thinking about your own blog, what are your three favourite or most successful blog posts and why? (please include links)

This blog is a response to Liz Jones’s critisicsm of “Mummy Bloggers” in the Mail on Sunday – it brought me record traffic in a 24 hour period and got lots of people talking.

This blog is on time moving quickly and talks about the end of a domestic era.

This is blog is me reviewing my wedding anniversary – it was special because it was our first time alone together in ages.

What are your three favourite blogs at the moment and why? (please include links)

I like Northern Mum‘s blog because she writes funny stuff, heartfelt stuff and random stuff that gets my attention.

I like Little LillyPad Co because Donna writes about her life and is always very supportive of other bloggers and campaigns that are happening so it’s a great way to find new ones.

I also like Sally Whittle’s personal blog – she’s a fellow member of the Working Mums Elite and like me, is responsible for ‘bringing home the bacon’. She writes about a wide range of things and isn’t afraid to offer and opinion. You never know what you’re going to read on her blog.

Our thanks to Liz, and if you are thirsty for more from Cambridge Mummy, you can also find her on Facebook and Twitter.

If you’re a parent blogger and would like to be profiled, please fill in the form here.