Taking the plunge – Baby swimwear

little b
So I know I don’t normally post pics of the little ones but I could not resist Little B modelling her new swimsuit.  Pink gingham – check, complimentary bow – check and perfect to cover up the garish Nemo swim nappy.  You may be surprised to find out that this little beauty was picked up in none other than NEXT.  My secret little store of goodies that won’t break the bank, NEXT often has some lovely childrenswear pieces with a nod to the traditional. Take a look.


Pink Gingham Swimsuit (3mths – 6yrs) by NEXT
Click here to view
£11/£12

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Happy Easter week – Enjoy your hunts

easter
Easter Wreath, diameter 30cm by John Lewis, £18
Yellow Catherine Dress available at Trotters, £39.99

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Early Learning – understanding your toddler course

toddler
It soon becomes apparent to any new parent when they leave the hospital that babies come without an instruction manual.  Fast forward to the toddler years and this has become even more noticeable as I daily battle with Little A over his impromptu tantrums regarding seemingly innocuous things to full blown toddler meltdowns.  Who could know that cutting his Lordship’s sandwiches into triangles rather than squares would warrant such tears.  This week, however, dare I say things seem a little calmer in our house.  As much as I would love to take credit for such innate perfect parenting I must admit to a little help from the professionals at Lulubaby.  I recently attended their ‘Understanding your Toddler’ course and it certainly has given me a good insight into the mindset of those aged 1-4 and their tenacious ways. Led by Tessa Hardingham, a parent educator and play therapist, the emphasis of the talk is to understand the root of your toddler’s behaviour so you can deal with challenging situations and learn ways to prevent them from occuring.  I definitely picked up some good tips which I am putting into practise and hopefully there will be fewer toddler tussles on the horizon.

All in the detail:

Classes by Lulubaby held in London
For mums of children aged 1-4
£48 for the 2.5 hr session which includes tea (and cake!)
Small groups mean limited places so best to book early
Next session: Friday 16th May (9.30am -12pm) in Fulham
Click here to view course
Click here to see other post-natal classes (including baby massage/weaning/first aid)

 

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All Mapped Out – beautiful Children’s atlas

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If you are looking for a stunning present for someone aged 5 through to 50 then look no further than this beautiful book entitled Maps.  Showcasing the world in glorious, illustrated map form, this super-sized hardback would capture the imaginations of both young and old and would certainly make you a popular godparent.  Almost A3 in size, it is excellent to dig out pre-holiday to examine iconic landmarks and indigenous animals for your chosen destination.

austria

All in the detail:

Maps by Aleksandra Mizielinska, Daniel Mizielinski
RRP: £20
Click here to view

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Turn Back Time – vintage inspired maternity clothing

inpig
The clocks changing has turned my thoughts to Summer and if you are pregnant and the thought of lycra leggings and sloppy t-shirts is just mildly depressing then I have a website just for you.  In Pig’s vintage-inspired maternity wear is just the ticket.  Created by two friends, who met at ante-natal classes, their vision was that maternity clothing should not mean that you have to abandon all sense of style and they created their range of clothing to flatter and celebrate the femininity of being pregnant.  My faves are the Seersucker Summer Dress (blue/white) and Cotton Smock Top in white.

All in the detail:
All clothing by In Pig
Seersucker Summer Dress, £120
Cotton Smock Top, £90
“In Pig” meant being pregnant in the invented language of the Mitford sisters, the scandalous feminine icons of 1930s British aristocracy.
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Food For Thought – excellent weaning guide

weaning
One thing I wished I had done first time round with Little A was to simply jot down the sleeping and feeding routines used in the first year.  As I am currently weaning Little B and although my approach is a lot more relaxed this time round, I seem to have developed amnesia regarding what age and what foodstuffs are appropriate. One book that has come to the rescue which sadly wasn’t published when Little A was born is ‘Weaning Made Easy’ by Dr Rana Conway.  A gem of a book, it succinctly delves into the pros and cons of the two most common weaning methods: traditional feeding vs. baby-led weaning.  Crucially, there are chapters on combining both methods and how to get the best out of both worlds. I have dusted off my faithful Avent Babyfood Steamer and Blender and filled the freezer with purees but also offering Little B lots of finger foods whilst sorting out Little A’s tea.  A great book if you want a good unbiased intro to weaning and want some advice on the different methods.  It contains recipes and helpful sections on allergies alongside some good food diaries which give you a detailed idea of what foods for when.

All in the detail:

Weaning Made Easy, by Dr Rana Conway
£10.99
Click here to view

 

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Eggcellent Taste – Stunning Easter Invites

I love Easter and not just for the obscene amount of chocolate that gets consumed but also for the celebration and family time that it brings.  I think having Little Ones also gives you free rein to completely immerse yourself in the fun side too and I cannot wait to don my Easter Bunny ears and get hiding those eggs. If you are planning an Easter bash then have a peek at Fraser and Parsley’s super cute bunny and egg invites.
fraser

All in the detail:

All by Fraser & Parsley
They also do beautiful notecards/birth announcent/change of address cards
Prices start £20 for a set of 10 Easter Invites

 

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Soft as a baby’s bottom – Sudocrem’s new cream

sudo
No nursery seems complete without a pot of the good old Sudocrem, but if your pot is looking a bit icky then check out their new Care and Protect ointment for nappy rash. Not only a barrier cream, this little gem also conditions the skin and fights infection too. Love the tube design as it is great to pop in the changing bag and a lot more user friendly. A good all rounder I say.

All in the detail:

Sudocrem Care and Protect
Available at most pharmacies/supermarkets
£3.99

 

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Mother’s Day Ideas – 30th March

Time to embrace the inner narcisist and subtly drop a few hints about Mothering Sunday I think.  We might be pushing our luck and in fact looking at the below, all would be amazing Birthday/Christmas/New Baby gifts but lets face it’s always good to have a wishlist.

pljTOP OF THE RANGE - However lovely a spa weekend would be if you are hankering for a present with longevity then why not consider a portrait of your Little One.  I was lucky enough to receive a drawing of Little A for Christmas, see above, and it truly is a gift to cherish.  We chose Pamela Lloyd Jones for her informal yet delicate pencil style and a few weeks before Christmas she came to our house for a ‘sitting’.  I was slightly concerned that I did not know any three year old capable of ‘sitting’, but my fears were allayed when in fact the session at home consisted of Pamela getting to know Little A’s personality and taking lots of photos of him as he chatted away and showed off his favourite toys.  A couple of weeks later and you receive 3 or 4 drawings and you get to select your favourite.  Pamela then has it framed in a style complimentary to your home and voila a few weeks later you will take delivery. Already cannot wait to see what Little B looks like when she turns three for her matching portrait.

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MID RANGE – Always coveted Merci Maman’s lovely things and their ‘intertwined necklace’ personalised with their signature cursive script would be a heavenly present. Available in gold plate or sterling silver on a 45cm long chain.

FREE RANGE – to be quite honest nothing beats a handmade card replete with clashing colours, glitter and PVA’d bits of tissue paper. I am already squirrelling away such treats from Little A’s ‘artistic’ nursery days so I will have a little box of nostalgia to sustain me through the years of teenage angst. Also accompanying the wonderful card, my envisaged Mother’s Day dream would be complete with a LIE-IN.  Best combo imaginable and so fingers crossed my hubby might clock this.

All in the detail:

Child Portrait Drawing by Pamela Lloyd Jones
Click here to view her gallery
Prices from £400 but that includes mount/framing costs, sitting and choice from 3/4 drawings

Mother’s Personalised Intertwined Gold Plated Necklace, by Merci Maman
£79 and comes with free gift box
Click here to view

Lie-in, £priceless

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Party Perfection – cool partyware by littlelulubel

party
And so it seems that we are beginning the Spring party season and the invites for Little A are flowing in – mostly via the clever online invitation site Paperless Post.  If you are feeling swamped by the much loved but garish princess/superhero fare adorning most party shops then look no further than Little Lulubel. Covering all you need to kit out your Little One’s party from invites, table decorations, birthday candles, dressing up bits and bobs right through to wonderful ready made party bags.  I especially love the pre-filled party cones for their retro vibe – they include 2 to 3 pocket toys and around 5 different sweets all wrapped up with the message ‘thank you for coming to my party’.   You can buy whole themed kits or buy items individually which is just as fun as you can mix and match or mix and clash.  Already working out how to incorporate their super cute toadstool candles into Little B’s first birthday cake.

All in the detail:

All by Little Lulubel
Click here for more info

 

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