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Best Unique Gifts for a New Mum

Best Unique Gifts for a New Mum

With an abundance of choices when it comes to buying a gift for a new mum, it can be hard to figure out what they will actually use and love – especially if you’re not a parent yourself or haven’t had a newborn in a while. I don’t do generic, so if you are looking for a unique gift for a new mum then look no further, here’s your guide to the best of the best! Continue reading Best Unique Gifts for a New Mum

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What should I buy for a colleague going on maternity leave?

What should I buy a colleague who's going on maternity leave? // Bespoke create-your-own gift hampers

The bump has grown, the big day is rapidly approaching, the money has been collected and the card signed by the team – but what do you buy for the expectant parent about to head off on maternity leave? All too often it’s a case of generic pink, blue, or yellow gift sets with the obligatory fluffy teddy. I’m not saying that some of them aren’t cute, but I once wrote a blog post which included how fluffy teddies had invaded our home on the birth of our first baby..! Continue reading What should I buy for a colleague going on maternity leave?

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Telling my story of motherhood, depression, and business

You may or may not know a whole lot about my background, about what brought me to this place as a mum-of-2 running her own online business. It’s not a crazy story, nor a tragic one, not hilarious and not glitzy. Its normality and ordinariness is exactly why it needs to be told, because amongst the celebrity fashion lines and success through adversity, are the normal people fighting their own battles and quietly triumphing.

People like me are so normal, in fact, that we’re rarely spoken about, which means that we often feel very alone and isolated. Continue reading Telling my story of motherhood, depression, and business

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Random Acts of Kindness // Being the Light

Random Acts of Kindness
I think that any decent person would agree with that statement; an act of kindness – big or small – can have a profound effect upon a person. As parents, we’re probably all constantly telling our children to “Be kind”, “Play nicely”, “Share”. We are building the foundations for them to blossom into generous, caring people.

Continue reading Random Acts of Kindness // Being the Light

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The Clingy Baby // Tips on How to Get Flipping Anything Done!

The Clingy Baby // Top Tips on How to Get Flipping Anything Done! Got a clingy baby? Yep, me too and as a small business owner, blogger, mama to a toddler too, wife, friend, runner, housewife - getting anything done is bloody hard! In this post I'm giving my top tips to get stuff done when you're the owner of a velcro baby.

When I recently posted on Instagram to see what sort of blog posts people would be interested in, lovely Charlotte over at Just Flapjack mentioned having a very clingy baby and how she is having to carry him everywhere. I’ve been there; Martha is velcro baby extraordinaire and at nearly 13 months she is growing more independent if I’m not around, but mummy’s presence = mummy cuddles. All. The. Time.

Got clingy baby and struggling to get anything done? My top tips aren’t revolutionary, but hopefully they’ll make you feel less alone.

Continue reading The Clingy Baby // Tips on How to Get Flipping Anything Done!

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Top Tips For Safely Bathing Your Newborn Baby

Top Tips for Safe Newborn Bathing with Shnuggle Baby Bath

Whether you’re expecting your first or your fifth baby, their first bath will be an exciting experience which can at the same time feeling a tad nerve-wracking. This teeny tiny baby will be 100% dependent upon you to keep them safe and that’s no small responsibility! If you’re feeling nervous about bathing your newborn baby then read on to find out our top tips for safe bath time fun. Continue reading Top Tips For Safely Bathing Your Newborn Baby

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Welcome to Apples & Pips!

Two small children, a house to try and clean, meals to try and cook, my blog… I’m not quite busy enough these days so I’ve set up a new business! Apples & Pips is an online shopping  offering fantastic parent, baby and toddler products from some of my favourite brands.

What’s In A Name?

Inspired by Phil and I being the apples raising our little pips, as well as being a nod to our family home nearby to Sir Isaac Newton’s birthplace and famous apple tree, Apples & Pips is a personal name and one that I feel really works for the type of brand I’m aiming to build. I wanted the name to represent our family, because without Phil, Toby and Martha this shop wouldn’t exist. It’s also sort of an extension of my blog in a way, Budding Smiles is after all about the nurturing and growth of our family.



What Will You Find Here?

In short, some of the best parent, baby and toddler products around. I’ve been fortunate to use many absolutely wonderful products since becoming a mum and I want to use that experience to offer parents and people buying for children things that will fit into and enhance their lives.

Many of the brands whose products I’m selling are also parents who, just like me, set up their businesses in order to fill a gap in the market whilst developing their brand at home with their children around. Building the product list takes time, so my hope is that as Apples & Pips grows I will get many more amazing brands on board whose products really fit in with those I’m already selling. If you are a parent, baby or toddler product business owner and are interested in selling through Apples & Pips then please get in touch!

Proud To Support MAMA Academy

I’ve been a supporter of MAMA Academy since Toby’s pregnancy and think that the work the MAMA team does to help reduce the UK’s stillbirth rate through education is incredibly important.

I will be donating 10% of my profits to this wonderful charity. No “When I reach X number of sales”, no upping my prices to compensate for the donation, no marketing ploys. Just a simple donation at the end of the financial year for 10% of  whatever profit I’ve made.


Why Shop Here?

Because I’m lovely and you want to help me make a successful business..?

Okay, you’ll need more than philanthropic intentions! So how about this:

  • I’m not marking up the prices – I will always sell in line with the brand’s own prices, including sales
  • Supporting charity – You can get a lovely happy feeling when you click ‘Buy’, knowing that some of your hard earned cash is going to a worthy cause
  • Great quality products – I’ve if not used the products personally with my own children then I know people who have and who love them
  • Free delivery – The price you see  is the price you pay, simple
  • I’m lovely and you want to help me make a successful business – *Wink* Well, you can’t blame a mama for trying!

Let’s Get Social!

I’m excited, nervous and a little delirious about setting up a new business but I’m so passionate about this and will do everything I can to make it a success. I really hope that you will join me on this journey and if you are after products for yourself, your kids or gifts for others then please do come over and browse the products I have available.

If you’re on Twitter then please do give me a follow and you can also find me over on Facebook. I’m hoping to do some YouTube tutorials and guides to products moving forward and I’m also posting product images and working mum photo spam over on Instagram.

Fancy a chat? If 140 characters isn’t enough then you can get in touch on my ‘Contact’ page or by emailing