Which Toddler Cup is Right For You?

Hi friends,

Today I’m once again attempting to help you navigate your way through the minefield that is baby shopping! Can’t relate? Just take a walk through the baby section of your local supermarket the next time you’re there; count the number of nappy brands, the different types of formula milk, the array of baby wipes, and that’s before you even get to the food section!

We are going to talk Toddler Cups, from straw, to sippy to magic (yes, magic cups!)

Since having my daughter last year, I have been continuously amazed at how many different types of one thing you can get. Baby products are not cheap, and very often you find yourself at home with something that is just not what you thought it would be…

Enter parenting bloggers (*gracious bow*); hopefully reviews like this can help you with your purchasing decisions. As always, all opinions are my own and I’ve tried to be as thorough as possible, but feel free to leave a question below if you have one!

Toddler Cups Review NUK Nuby Born Free Munchkin

At around the one-year mark, babies are encouraged to use some type of cup to drink their beverages from. Some parents start much earlier (from 6 months alongside the introduction of food) but we waited a while longer as Khadija was just not ready. Now, at 16 months, she’s able to hold her cup and drink from it herself! Here are the ones she has used:

The Born Free Training Cup

Born Free Sippy Cup

Rating: 4/10
RRP: £4.99

This was the first cup I bought for Khadija, and I won’t beat around the bush: I didn’t like it. It’s quite fiddly to put together; the white handles need to go on first, but when you screw the top part on, it won’t always be aligned with the handles. So to get it all straightened up, you have to move the handles around and screw, then move some more… Its just all so unnecessary.

If that was the only problem, I wouldn’t be too disappointed. But then, this happened:

Born Free Sippy Cup

Not long after we’d had it, the spout “ripped.” Khadija didn’t even have her top teeth at the time, so it wasn’t her fault!

The only positives are that its BPA free, dishwasher safe and a nice pink colour. Hence it gets a reluctant 4 out of 10. You can read more about it on the Born Free website here.

The Nuby Straw Cup

Nuby Straw Cup

Rating: 7/10
RRP: £3.49

This one has me so divided.

There’s so much I love about it: it’s insulated; it holds a good amount of liquid; the straw is really soft and gentle on the gums; your child can drink from it without tipping it up or back; it will not leak at all when shut; it has a decent price tag; and the colours/design and lovely!

But… the negatives are just too big to ignore. Firstly, the straw doesn’t reach right to the bottom! This means approximately 2oz of liquid always ends up going to waste. I’ve tried to get a photo of this:

Nuby Straw Cup

Secondly, cleaning is a bit of nightmare. The parts are so difficult to clean inside of, so I have to take it all apart and put it in the dishwasher everytime I want to clean it.  What a shame as this remains my daughter’s favourite, but for these reasons, I had to give it a 7 out of 10 and not more. You can read more about it at the Nuby website here.

The Munchkin Click Lock Straw Cup
Munchkin click lock straw cup

Rating: 9/10
RRP: £4.00

This one is also BPA free and dishwasher safe. However, the biggest plus point about this cup is that the straw reaches all the way to the bottom, hooray! Khadija can slurp up every last bit of her favourite smoothie in this.

It’s very easy to clean and reassemble. The shape of the cup is also fun; its like a flattened cylinder, so Khadija can get her tiny hands around it easily.

Munchkin click lock straw cup

The straw is slightly harder than the Nuby straw, but that doesn’t seem to bother Khadija. Once the top part of the cup is “clicked” into place and the straw closed, it doesn’t leak. However, it would’ve gotten a full 10/10 from me if the straw would also “click” shut; as it is, Khadija can easily leave it half open and throw her cup around (as you do) and then sometimes u do get slight spillage.

But that’s a super small reason not to buy this cup, to be honest. For the price and straw length alone, I think this is one of the best cups on the market. You can read more about it on Munchkin’s website here.

The NUK Magic Cup

Nuk Magic Cup

Rating: 9/10
RRP: £9.50

I have to admit that when I first handed this to Khadija, I had very little confidence that she’d figure out how to use it. But, I stand corrected! Essentially, this is a training cup to help toddlers learn how to drink from regular cups/glasses. However, there is a silicone ring that creates a seal around the rim, so that until you take a sip, no liquid leaks through!

Nuk Magic Cup

At first, she just held it on her lips and looked utterly confused at why nothing was coming out. But it didn’t take long for her to learn how to sip and “suck” the water out!

I love this cup: the designs are so much fun (Khadija loves to point out the animals with her tiny fingertips) and one of the best, best, best parts for parents is how easy it is to clean! Like all the cups reviewed, its BPA free and dishwasher safe.

The only reason I gave this 9 and not 10/10, however, is the price tag; this one is the most expensive cup of the four I’ve reviewed. But its a great way to teach your child how to use cups properly with NO messy spillage! You can read more about it on NUK’s website here.

At the moment, we use the Munchkin straw cup when we’re out and about, and for drinking smoothies in. At home, we use the NUK magic cup for water at and in-between meal times.

So there you have it, friends. And now I have some questions for you:
– Have you used any of these cups?
– Which type of cup does your baby/toddler prefer?
– Was this review helpful for you?
– What did you have for dinner last night? (I mean, why not?)

Let me know in the comments below, and thanks for reading!

Thank-you to Munchkin and NUK for sending me your cups to review! The Nuby and Born Free cups were my own purchases, and all opinions expressed her are my own.

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The Phantom Pregnancy

So… this week I experienced a phantom pregnancy.

There. I said it. I got it off my chest.

Oh wait, you want details? Of course you do. It’s always awesome to hear how incredibly stupid somebody else has been. Happy to oblige!

It started with the symptoms.

  1. Hunger. Always hungry. Able to finish off a huge packet of doritos and still be hungry. The kind of hungry where you stand in front of the fridge for ages… just staring. You see, once you’ve experienced pregnancy, where you are allowed (in fact encouraged by loved ones) to eat… Its very hard to go back to normal, eat-like-a-sensible-human-being life. Much easier to assume the hunger could be caused by another pregnancy!
  2. Tired. Out of breath after climbing up the stairs. Yeah ok, I know it was probably all that sitting on the sofa and eating for hours that caused me to become so unfit. Or… I could be pregnant again? (the latter sounded better in my head).
  3. I felt movement. I kid you not. I felt the phantom baby move. I sat upright in my bed with this exact expression on my face:

Ok, so I was drifting in and out of sleep and clearly imagined this “movement” but… it was enough to send my mind into overdrive for a whole 24 hours.

I thought ALL of the following:

  1. Oh shit.
  2. No. I can’t be…
  3. Can I?
  4. It would explain a lot of things *casually reaches for a french fry*
  5. Wow, imagine being able to eat as much I want again without the looks from my family.
  6. Ok this is exciting.
  7. Wait, what am I saying? This is terrible! I have a 16 month old toddler!!
  8. Awww, there would be a nice small gap between her and her new sibling.
  9. Which would mean even more work for me; I can barely manage with running after just her!
  10. Yeah but maybe she’ll be older and wiser by the time Baby No. 2 comes.
  11. Good thing I didn’t pack away all my maternity clothes.
  12. Ooh I noticed Mamas & Papas had a maternity wear sale on…
  13. What am I thinking?! I’m NOT pregnant!
  14. I should take a test. Just to be sure.
  15. I am NOT buying a pregnancy test because I’m NOT pregnant!
  16. Ooh I wonder if that women still does those pregnancy massages…
  17. Oh my God I’m going to be able to put my feet up for indefinite periods of time again!
  18. And then wake up 3-6 times at night to pee… Crap.
  19. Wait stop, I’m not pregnant!
  20. Yeah but these things happen though, don’t they? Women not knowing they’re pregnant till they’re in labour?!
  21. *opens up Google. Types “could I be pregnant and not know”*
  22. Google says its unlikely. But not impossible. It didn’t say impossible!
  23. I should just do a test *sees a croissant on kitchen counter and momentarily forgets own name*
  24. Jeez these tests are so expensive. Totally money-making crap. Ooh good business idea, must remember this…
  25. Before I do the test, I should tell my friends *whatsapps the dilemma*
  26. Dammit they’re all encouraging me to do a test. They were supposed to shut this drama down!
  27. Ok here goes…
  28. *does the test*
  29. *waits*
  30. Oh my God… I didn’t even tell my husband.
  31. Shit. My friends are waiting for me to tell them the result on whatsapp. They’re going to know I’m pregnant before my husband does!
  32. But I’m NOT pregnant!
  33. *looks down at test* oh I’m actually not pregnant!
  35. So this means… I just have a very big appetite?!
  36. *leaves bathroom and gets a whiff of a dirty nappy*
  37. Awww look at my little munchkin running towards me… WOAH that’s a big poop. I need to hold my nose and do this one-handedly.
  38. Well THANK GOD I’m not pregnant with another one yet!!!
  39. Oh she’s putting her foot in my face. The poop is going everywhere. The wipes are finished! ARGH!
  40. Normal non-pregnant life, welcome back!

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You Baby Me Mummy
The Secret Diary of Agent Spitback
Life with Baby Kicks

5 Nursery Rhymes with Questionable Lyrics

Remember that episode of Friends when Rachel and Ross sing “Baby Got Back” to Emma?

That may have been for comedic purposes, but they were actually on to something; researchers have recently found that singing soothes babies for much longer than talking does!

However, before you clear your throat and belt away, let’s talk about song options for a moment. You’re most likely going to sing a popular nursery rhyme to your little one, right? That’s what I was doing today, when mid-song it suddenly occurred to me that this is actually quite inappropriate. Who on earth wrote these lyrics?!

The song in question was Humpty Dumpty:

Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall
All the king’s horses and all the King’s men
Couldn’t put Humpty Dumpty together again

So… Humpty Dumpty is dead? Or at the very least, seriously injured?! These were the thoughts running through my mind when I was reminded of a couple of other nursery rhymes where the main character may also have been unceremoniously killed off:

It’s raining; it’s pouring.
The old man is snoring.
He went to bed and bumped his head,
And he wouldn’t get up in the morning.

He what…? Is he dead too?!

In fact, not even the babies being sang to are spared:

Rock-a-bye baby on the tree top,
When the wind blows the cradle will rock.
When the bough breaks,
The cradle will fall,
And down will come baby
Cradle and all.


say what?

Moving on swiftly to poor old Jack:

Jack and Jill went up the hill
To fetch a pail of water.
Jack fell down and broke his crown,
And Jill came tumbling after.

He broke his crown. Wait, what? The guy BROKE his HEAD! How morbid is that? But to be honest, that’s not what bothers me most about this particular rhyme. I want to know what Jack and Jill were going up the hill for in the first place. I’m no expert on water-fetching, but aren’t wells typically found at the bottom of hills? Hmmm, very dodgy.

But the straw that broke my rhyme-ridden back was Yanky Doodle Went to Town. It’s one verse in particular that I am baffled by, which goes like this:

Father and I went down to camp,
Along with Captain Gooding,
And there we saw the men and boys
As thick as hasty pudding.

Having never heard of “hasty pudding” before, I confess I initially thought the line said “tasty pudding.” But even after being corrected, I still don’t understand why the men and boys have to be described as ANY pudding!

Fellow parents, I think “Baby Got Back” may well be the safest option we have. That is all.

The Secret Diary of Agent Spitback

What She Wore #2

Hello friends,

I really enjoyed doing a post about Khadija’s outfits last week (see here). So here we are again! Another weekend, another set of outfits from the week to share.

This week, we were mostly recovering from a cold so didn’t go out a lot. By mid-week, I was pretty much going crazy! I had not only been ill myself, but was also up at all hours with an ill baby. Not a good combo.

Cue frantic Whatsapping on Tuesday evening to see who was available for a quick coffee the next day. “I just need an hour!” The desperation was clear.

Luckily, I have awesome friends. Wednesday afternoon saw me bundle Little Miss K up and off we drove to Luton to spend the afternoon with my good friend Iram. Chicken curry, naan, samosas, tea, LOTS of toys for Khadija to play with, and much needed girly chatter = PERFECT DAY!

These are the things I miss the most when I’m not in England… not Starbucks and Brent Cross which I had thought would be the hardest to part with!!

So here’s what Khadija wore to our impromptu play date:

Baby girl clothes Next Flat Lay

Dress + tights: Next| Shoes: Next

I fell in love with this dress when I first saw it in Next; it’s not very often that I buy her clothes because she gets so many presents, and almost-new hand-me-downs! This was a treat for us both.

You probably can’t tell in the photo but its super soft to touch! The tights came with it, but to be honest, I don’t think red goes well with this dress. I wish they had been hot pink instead. Do you know of anywhere that sells a decent pair of hot pink tights? Let me know in the comments please!

Also worn later in the week was this:

Baby girl clothes Next Mothercare Flat Lay

Cardigan: Mothercare| Dress: Next| Leggings: Tu| Socks: H&M| Shoes: Next

She’s worn this outfit quite a few times and I love it; a slightly summery look in an otherwise gloomy November! This is another Next dress (from Khadija’s trendy Aunty Shaazia).

In other news, Xmas products are everywhere! Actually, I feel like this year, shops paced themselves well; I remember one year I started seeing Xmas decorations in Selfridges as early as August!

When I think of this time of year, red always come to mind (thanks for that, Santa), and there are some luscious red pieces in the shops for girls this year. As I was browsing around, I decided to put together my favourites of what’s in-store right now:

Baby girl xmas fashion 2015

Striped dress: H&M| Tights: John Lewis| Pinafore dress: Zara| Santa hat and booties: John Lewis| Shoes: H&M

Which do you like best?

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Chocolate Beetroot Loaf Cake

Hello friends,

I write this sitting at my mother’s dining table in London, with my 15-month old daughter sitting in her chair opposite. She’s currently laughing her little head off, as she casually flicks her olives across the room. Yep, I think that pretty much sums up my life right now.

Oh and I’m also eating cake! A slice of moist, utterly satisfying chocolate beetroot cake, to be precise.

Chocolate Beetroot Loaf Cake | Eat, Write, Be!

I’m so excited to share this recipe as its my own creation! Not long ago, I would not have been confident enough to create a cake recipe from scratch. So I was ecstatic when this one turned out so nice and soft. And best of all, it’s refined sugar-free, which meant I had no qualms about giving some to my little one 🙂

But first, let’s discuss this beetroot-in-a-cake business. I didn’t actually use beetroots here; I used beetroot powder. Did you know that beetroot powder is high in iron and vitamin C? It’s well known that vitamin C strongly enhances the absorption of iron (that’s why a lot of people drink fresh orange juice with iron-rich meals), so the fact that both are present here makes this an incredible superfood!

Chocolate Beetroot Loaf Cake | Eat, Write, Be!

The beetroot powder has a brilliant hot pink shade to it, pretty much the same as fresh grated beetroots, BUT… using the powder means you don’t get the stains all over your hands, clothes and face (yes, face… I’ve been there).

I was worried that by skimping on fresh beets I wouldn’t get the moistness that they are traditionally used for. But I was pleasantly surprised at how deliciously soft this turned out anyway!

You’ll note that the temperature this is baked at is lower than usual. This is because instead of sugar, the cake is sweetened with a combination of honey and date nectar, which would have burnt at a higher temperature.

Have you ever used beetroot powder before? I’d love to hear how in the comments below. Also tell me what’s the weirdest vegetable you’ve ever used in a dessert, and if you’ll try this recipe 🙂

Chocolate Beetroot Loaf Cake | Eat, Write, Be!


1.5 cups self-raising flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/3 cup cocoa
2 tbsp beetroot powder
125g butter, melted
2 eggs
1 cup milk (with 2 tbsp removed and discarded)
1 tsp pure vanilla extract (or vanilla bean paste)
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup date nectar*

*if you don’t have date nectar to hand, you can simply use honey instead, or even maple syrup.

Preheat your oven to 160 degrees Celsius (325 degrees Fahrenheit). Lightly grease a loaf tin, then line it with baking parchment.

In one bowl, stir together the flour, baking soda, cocoa and beetroot powder with a whisk till everything is combined.

In another bowl, combine the melted butter, eggs, vanilla and honey (don’t forget to discard two tbsp from the milk first). Whisk everything by hand, then gently stir in the flour mix.

Bake in your preheated oven for 50-60 minutes (check from 50 minutes onwards by inserting a toothpick or skewer into the middle, and seeing if it comes out clean).

Once the cake is baked, let it cool for 10 minutes in the tin, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Chocolate Beetroot Loaf Cake | Eat, Write, Be!

Disclaimer: Indigo Herbs very kindly sent me some beetroot powder to review and create something yummy with. However, I did not receive any financial compensation from them, and ALL opinions expressed are my own 🙂