Double the Monkey Business

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Social Media Blast – Facebook Page Week – Thumbs Up!

There are so many pieces and parts to running a great blog, it’s hard to keep up with it all.…

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Father’s Day With a Twist Thanks To Uncommon Goods

Father’s Day With a Twist Thanks To Uncommon Goods

I cannot believe that Father’s day is just around the corner.  I genuinely feel like it has only just been Christmas!

One of the things that I struggle with it trying to find pressies for my hubby.  What on earth do you get the man who has everything?

This week I have been chatting to a company called Uncommon Goods.

They caught my eye as they endeavor to feature unique jewelry, designer decor, tabletop items and handcrafted gifts.  So they just stood out as being something a little bit different.

*This is a collaborative post*

I have been browsing their website and I am in love with the gift ideas.  I found that they had a lot of fun gift ideas for Father’s day.

There were so many fun ideas on this site, which I know that hubby would love.

Pick Punch

For the hubby that has it all I loved this idea, a pick punch! This is perfect for my guitar loving hubby who seems to constantly misplace his!


Also for the man who is obsessed with hot sauces – and I am not joking he has a whole cupboard shelf dedicated to his ‘collection’, I thought this gift idea for men was just perfect:

Make Your Own Hot Sauce Kit! Spicy!

Suffice to say the company sparked my interest.

I have never seen a lot of these gifts on standard shopping shelves. This website gives me ideas for years to come!

I have to say thought, I did find myself glancing at some of the gift ideas for women as well.  I came across these birthstone balls and thought they looked fabulous.  There really is something here for all the family.

Birthstone Wishing Balls

I have to admit I was completely sold, when I stumbled across their Better to Give page on their website.  I absolutely love that they have the freedom to support causes that are important to them. Some of these great causes include RAINN (anti-sexual violence organisation), American Forests (protecting and restoring forests worldwide) and Reach Out & Read (promoting early literacy, language skills and school readiness to young children and families).  This is a huge plus for me, fun shopping and a company that cares.

uncommon goods

For all those looking for gift ideas, I would definitely check this fab company out.


Stationary Mad with Tokidoki | Review

Stationary Mad with Tokidoki | Review
We have gone stationary crazy on the blog today as we review the new range by tokidoki ! Come and join us to see what they have to offer.

I am sure that I am not the only blogger to be stationary mad.  I am no exception. It it impossible to walk past a stationary shop without having a browse.  Usually nine times out of 10, I end up purchasing something.  Of course I have the perfect excuse; “I need it for my blog!”

So when I was asked to review an exciting new designer stationary range, I jumped at the chance.  In fact I would go so far as to say that I was probably one of the first to respond.  As I said, I love stationary!

Stationary and Gift Books by tokidoki

The first thing I noticed when I opened this stationary set was how bright and colourful it was.  I love the designs on the front of the journals and books.  It will really brighten up my new work desk.

“tokidoki is the hope, the hidden energy that everyone has inside, it gives us the strength to face a new day and dream about something positive and the hope that something magical will happen to us.”

– Simone Legno

I was sent a selection of what is on offer but the full range offers a staggering amount of options. From journals, postcard books and colouring books.

So what did I review from the tokidoki range?

Postcard Book

I have to say this is one of my favourite things from the range. This lovely book includes over 80 postcards.  So if you want to send someone a message and a standard card doesn’t seem quite right, then these are perfect.  Just take out on of the postcards, write your message and you can drop it in the postbox.

Sketchbook with Spiral

This large book is perfect for those that love to sketch.  I am loving this because years ago I used to love to sketch, I have a book and all the gear upstairs in a drawer somewhere.  I will always remember travelling around Paris with my sketchbook back in the day. That was over ten years ago though and I have not even tried to do anything like that since the boys were born.  Maybe time to take it back up?


Coloring Book and Coloring Pad

A large and small for those that love to colour as a form of stress busting.  I have heard many bloggers swear by it as a way to wind down after staring at a screen for hours.  I am going to give it a shot and these beautiful books are inspiring me.

Unicorno Flexi Journal

This was also right up my street.  Especially as I have just finished my last journal!  This is perfect handbag size and will be essential for the endless lists that I like to make.  Also good for scribbling down blog ideas before I forget! A must for all unicorn fans

365 Days: My Inspired Life

I have never seen anything quite like this book before. There is a section to be complete every day for a year, each asking a different question.  What is the happiest moment in your life? Who is the funniest person you know and why? What do you think the future will be like?  What brilliant questions to reflect back and also think about life going forward.  Also a great way to inspire future blog posts!

About tokidoki

The company is based in L.A. and was founded in 2003 by designer Simone Legno and his partners Pooneh Mohajer and Ivan Arnold. They have went onto create an incredible line of apparel, handbags, cosmetics and accesories. The brand has gained a bit of cult status, as they have worked with Karl Lagerfeld, Marvel, Hello Kitty and Xbox.

The brand has captured that ‘kawaii’ quality of cuteness, quintessential to so much of modern Japanese popular culture and its aesthetic.  It infuses with a trendy European design style.

Fun Fact: tokidoki means “sometimes” in Japanese

Details of the tokodoki range:

  • 365 Days: My Inspired Life – ISBN 9781454921790 – £9.99
  • Cactus Journal – ISBN 9781454921844 – £7.99
  • Coloring Book – ISBN 9781454921813 – £7.99
  • Coloring Pad – ISBN 9781454921837 – £9.99
  • Postcard Book – ISBN 9781454921882 – £7.99
  • Sketchbook with Spiral – ISBN 9781454921899 – £11.99
  • Donutella Flexi Journal – ISBN 9781454921912 – £9.99
  • Mermicorno Flexi Journal – ISBN 9781454921929 – £9.99
  • Moofia Flexi Journal – ISBN 9781454921936 – £9.99
  • Unicorno Flexi Journal – ISBN 9781454921905 – £9.99
  • Origami Paper Pack – ISBB 9781454925699 – £9.99

These books are available from or by calling 01273 488 005.




Living with Astigmatism – A Mum’s Journey So Far…

Living with Astigmatism – A Mum’s Journey So Far…
At the end of last year our son was diagnosed with Astigmatism and Amblyopia. It came as a but of a shock. This is our story so far.

It has recently struck me that over the years, I have taken health for granted. Nothing more so than with eyesight.

At the end of last year, we discovered that one of our twins has eyesight problems.  Not just any kind of eyesight problem, but a serious one.  That day our world was turned upside down. There were tears and talks of second opinions; how could this be?

He only has 20% vision, an Astigmatism and Amblyopia

It came as a shock, not least because he had been expertly going about his life without us realising; running, playing, dancing….  He didn’t know any different and had manage to go about his daily business quite easily.  He would often stumble and fall, but honestly we all thought he was just clumsy… like me. With hindsight, we noticed that sometimes he brought books very close to his face to read but we just thought he was competing with his twin brother for control of the book.

It all started when L got sand in D’s eye at kindergarten, by accident I hasten to add.  We ended up with a trip to A&E to get the sand removed; it was not D’s happiest experience.

When there, the doctor suggested we get his eye tested.

We had his eyes tested six months prior, so we were not concerned.  However, to be sure we went back a few weeks later and got him re-tested.

We were shocked, when we discovered that our precious little boy had serious eye sight problems. My prescription is -1 and -2.  This requires me to wear glasses and have slightly blurred vision.  He has +7.75 and +8 and I could not comprehend what the world has looked like for him.  Until we found a website which showed us what he could see with that prescription:

Thanks to Optiker:

It did beg the question whether these or the results six months ago were incorrect.  So, we got him re-tested one last time.  The results were conclusive: his eyesight is as bad as we feared. His Ophthelmologist is convinced that the first set of results were incorrect.

You see the vision problems is caused by the actual shape of his eye.

This is called Astigmatism.

Astigmatism is caused by an irregular curvature of the eye’s cornea or lens. If your cornea or lens isn’t smooth and evenly curved, light rays aren’t refracted properly. This is called a refractive error.

He also has Amblyopia, which is more commonly known as lazy eye.  This is not necessarily a squint, it is where one or both eyes are not developing properly.  Which can lead to a squint and is something we have to keep an eye on.

We are pleased that the glasses D now wears makes a difference.  He says they help and he hates it when he is not wearing them.

He looks exactly Harry Potter, which he is thrilled about.  We know what he will be dressing up as for World Book Day next year!

At our last appointment, the doctor advised us to put an eye patch on D’s better eye to treat his Amblyopia.

That should encourage his other eye to work better. We have read differing views on whether this works or not, but it is worth a try.  Fortunately we have found this easy enough.  He loves pirates so is happy to be wearing a pirates patch for a few hours a day.  The first day he wore it to Kindergarten, he was a bit of a celebrity!

Deep in thought and rocking his eye patch 🙂

A post shared by Double The Monkey Business (@doublethemonkeybusiness) on

We are just starting out on this long journey with my brave and grown-up little guy.  We don’t know where this will go. There could be an improvement.  Or we could see his vision decline.  Whatever happens we will be there to support and love him unconditionally.  Daddy monkey has been through similar vision problems, and also wore a patch as a child, so he can relate to what D is going through.

I never thought I would be so pleased that my son got sand in my other son’s eye!

If you are going through a similar journey with your little ones, I would love to hear from you. It is always so reassuring to hear from someone who knows what this journey feels like. Just leave me a comment below or on Social Media.

  • Visit here to read more about our family life.
  • To find out more about Astigmatism, visit the NHS Website here.
  • To find out more about Amblyopia / Lazy Eye, visit the NHS Website here.

Social Media Blast – Pinterest Week – Just Pin It!

Social Media Blast – Pinterest Week – Just Pin It!

There are so many pieces and parts to running a great blog, it’s hard to keep up with it all. Social Media helps you to connect with others, get your posts seen and shared. Are you blogging to yourself? Do you want to be noticed but don’t know how to get there?

Running your blog in a vacuum is a futile process. “Build it and they will come” is just a line from a movie. Instantaneous Stardom rarely happens in real life. You have to be seen to be noticed.

Social Media and Blogging

Social Media connects us with others who find value in our posts. It helps to grow our audience and hone our skills. It will put you in the position to be noticed by Brands. Brands who do business with bloggers.

Social Media and Monetizing your Blog

Brands want bloggers that are connected. Not only are they looking for a large following, they search for bloggers who have an engaged following. You may have a million followers on Twitter, but are you interacting with them? If not, you won’t be as valuable to a Brand as someone with 5,000 followers that are interactive.

Building a large, committed platform can take years. It’s a lot of work and it takes a concentrated effort. Let’s work together to speed it up a bit.

Meet your hosts:

Social Media Blast. Thursday at 9 PM EST Bloggers working together to grow our social media platforms. Brands are looking for large, engaged communities, let's work together to grow and prosper.

Nikki from View From In Here Jessica from Adventures of a Cavemom
Lindsey from Lindsey Tradup Yvonne from Double the Monkey Business
Rena from Fine, Whatever Blog Gidget from Mommy Perfect
Leah from Elm Photo Studio Leanne from Smiles and Sundays
Tinese from Inspired by A3  

Social Media Blast

We have partnered together to bring you the Social Media Blast. Each week we will feature a different social media platform, link up your account and follow the others in the linkup. Your social media numbers will grow, but follower growth is just one part of the equation. We can help you with the numbers, it’s up to you to make the connection.

When you are clicking through to each social media account in the linkup, take some action. Like a few status updates, comment or share. Make a connection.

If you are working to make yourself attractive to Brands, size does matter. Honest. Brands want to work with Bloggers, make them take notice of you, take action and grow!

Grow Big and Grow Quickly

In order to grow quickly and begin making money from your blog you need to build your platforms.  The quickest way to grow is to join with other bloggers, working together to build each other. Add your link below, follow and be followed! Let’s work together and make 2017 a phenomenal year.

Social Media Blast will be live on all of our Blogs each Thursday, giving you the opportunity to hang out with us and meet our Social Media Following.

There will be a different Social Media Platform for you to build each week, we will focus on the platforms Brands and Sponsors like to see. This is where the Blog Karma sets in, the more people you follow, the more that will follow you.

Social Media Blast Requirements

ONE Add the link to your Social Media Account. It must be a Public account or Facebook PAGE not personal.

TWO Follow everyone in the linkup, come back later in the week to follow those that have joined after you. This linkup will be open for a week, so come back and follow more as the week goes on, and get followed back!  This is not a link dump, if you aren’t following others your link will be deleted. Thanks.

THREE Share. Click to Tweet. The more people that link up, the bigger we all grow.

Social Media Blast. Thursday at 9 PM EST

This week we’re focusing on Pinterest.

This week, link up the URL to your Pinterest account (NOT YOUR BLOG URL), follow others on the list. This linkup will be open for the next week, so come back and follow more as the week goes on, and get followed back! This is not a link dump, if you aren’t following others your link will be deleted. Thanks.

To find the URL to your Pinterest profile, open up Pinterest, sign in and go to your profile.

My URL is:    Yours should be similar!

By the way, share this, let’s reach out to as many bloggers as we can, we’ve made it easy to Tweet above. Let’s make 2016 a year for blogging community!

PS did you know that Brands will pay you good money for large, active Pinterest accounts? The larger and more involved your Pinterest Following the more money you can be paid. Let’s get some dollars in your pocket!