Friday, 28 September 2012

Welcome to Kiddicare Nottingham - review and competition

Yesterday myself and the Little Man took a trip to Nottingham to visit the new Kiddicare store which has just opened. Read on for a review of our day and the chance to win some baby goodies.
We went to Nottingham by train, which the little man found very exciting.



I decided that the best route would be a walk along the canal. It was a lovely sunny day and I was so glad I chose to go this way.



The Store:


 The store is bright and colourful and there are places for children to play. This is Little Man in the enclosed play area in the canteen. Keep them occupied while you grab a coffee and a bite to eat.

The choice of pushchairs is amazing with prices starting from just £19.99. They also stock the top brands like Stokke and Phil and Teds. You can also buy all the accessories you need and test your pushchairs out on their track. This photo shows them on shelves but they are also available around to the store for you to push or fiddle with and truly make the right choice for you and your little one.
 If you are feeling a little tired walking around then you can take a seat on one of these colourful stools dotted everywhere.
Then you can be off again to view the amazing range of car seats, nursery furniture, high chairs, stair gates and other safety items, nappies, clothes, bottles....you name it! Everything you need for baby!

 The car seat area has a fun area for kids to watch cartoons while you choose the best seat. You'll find plenty of advice and they will fit your car seat for you for no extra cost.

If you are buying for someone else and in a hurry you can wrap your gifts up before you leave at this wonderful gift wrapping station.Kiddicare also offer a Very Important Baby service which is like having your own personal shopper for baby things. There is loads of advice on offer because choosing what you need for your first baby can be a daunting experience.

One Thing I loved is the wide aisles, you can easily manoeuvre your pushchair around without knocking things over. (I'm always knocking things over, such a bad driver!) Also, Little Man likes to grab things off the shelves (he's that age!) as we walk around, so it's good not to have to get too close. The store is all one floor and each section is well signed so you can see easily where you need to go. There are help desks everywhere and a welcome desk at the front of the door. It also has a canteen, a baby nursing area and a toilet area. 
I love this bib bunting, so cute.





The Canteen: 

I tried a cheese and tomato panini which was toasted and brought over to me. Little man had a goody box which you can fill yourself from the choice available. We chose fruit, carrot sticks and a drink. He also had a packet of crayons in the box, which was left blank for the children to colour in. The seating was comfortable and roomy and the children's play area was available to stop the little ones from getting bored.

There were also two stations for you to warm bottles or baby food, they are happy for you to bring your own. Then there is a lovely cosy area for mum's wanting a little privacy to breast feed their baby, complete with rocking chairs and foot stools. 


A blurry photo of the cakes available :-)


Loo Lane:

Loo lane is what kiddicare lovingly call their toilet area. It really is a lovely place to visit, honestly!

 First up you have the colourful wall charts letting your little ones (and big ones) see how tall they are. I'm as tall as an ostrich!










The nappy changing area is bright and colourful
The loos themselves have enough room to push your pushchair in so you don't have to leave baby outside alone if you are on your own. (yeah, no need to use the disabled loo) and each one has a mummy loo and a toddler loo. Ingenious :-)

Events:

The store also has an event room which will be hosting Baby Signing, Baby Yoga and Baby Massage. We were given a trial of Baby Massage and Baby Yoga. They thoughtfully provided us with dolls and teddy's to practice on. I had little man with me but he was reluctant to lie on the floor and join in, a little too old maybe? Although I did learn some useful techniques I will be able to use at home, on both little man and a little reflexology to help Big Girls knee problems. 



Competition Time:

now for your chance to win some goodies from Kiddicare. On offer we have a lovely Giraffe changing mat, a  teether from Born Free, a pack of two bibs, a pack of two dummies and a fabulous book, 'What to Buy For Your Baby' (a really comprehensive guide to everything you need from birth to toddler with useful pull-out shopping lists.) Total prize value £26.95
To enter this competition all you have to do is follow this blog (by GFC or email) and leave me a comment to say you have.
You can earn an extra entry by liking our Facebook Page where we will be holding more competitions in the very near future. Good Luck Everyone!
Competition open to UK entrants only (sorry!)
competition prizes


Sunday, 16 September 2012

Parenting Tips - Head lice and Linicin Reveiw

I was sent a bottle of Linicin Lotion and Linicin Prevention Spray to review and am including this along with my tips for preventing and getting rid of those pesky creatures, head lice!
Most people with children will encounter and infestation of head lice at some point. Some even encounter them on a regular basis. They are nasty little mites that are difficult to banish.
First it's handy to know about the life cycle of head lice.
The females lay eggs, nits, close to the scalp and these take 9-10 days to hatch. 12 days later these baby lice become adults and can start laying eggs themselves. When you get rid of an infestation, by whatever means, if there are any lice or eggs left another infestation will begin again. Empty egg cases remain attached to the hair but will move slowly along the length of the hair.

Head lice travel from head to head with close contact, this why they spread around schools. They can't jump or fly, but do crawl really fast.

They have no preference to clean or dirty hair, boys or girls, or if hair is short or long, although, obviously it's a little harder to get rid of them from longer hair.

Preventing Head Lice


  • Checking regularly is a necessity. It's best to use a nit comb for this and should be done straight after washing the hair and it is still damp or wet. 
  • Conditioner helps the nit comb to glide through the hair, and also makes it easier to remove the lice and eggs.
  • All family members need to be checked for head lice as they will easily spread among family members. (this means adults too)
  • Having long hair tied up can help the spread of head lice, but is not fail proof.
  • Some people believe the use of hair products such as hair wax and hair spray helps prevent head lice. I have no personal experience of this so I don't know if it works or not.
  • It is believed that head lice do not like Tea Tree Oil and you can buy shampoos and conditioners that contain this which may help. I have used Tea Tree Oil essential oil added to the final rinse water in the past on an older child and this seemed to work. 
  • You can buy specialised head lice combs, like the Nitty Gritty comb which are believed to be more effective at removing lice and eggs.



Getting Rid of an Head Lice Infestation



When you find head lice it's important to treat the whole family.
There are two main ways of treating;
1. Wash hair and cover with conditioner. Using a nit comb remove as many head lice as possible before rinsing out the conditioner. Use the comb again before the hair is dry, wiping it between each comb through on a cloth or piece of kitchen towel. Repeat this at least 3 times in the next 14 days and providing  you do a good job of getting the lice out you should get rid of them.

2. Use a head lice preparation to kill the lice.

There are many available to choose from, some are pesticides some kill the lice by suffocation. If your child has a medical condition such as asthma it's best to consult your GP first so you know which one to use.

I was given a bottle of Linicin lotion to try.
Linicin lotion is non-toxic and has not been tested on animals. It is a 15 minute solution that works by suffocating the head lice. It also impedes the development of eggs.
In the box you get a 15ml bottle of lotion, a metal nit comb and an information leaflet. The bottle is enough for two treatments on shoulder length hair.

My daughter has quite thick hair but I still managed to completely saturate it with only half of the bottle. The liquid goes on easily and leaves a coat along the hair. There is no strong smell, although it is obvious that the hair is coated. I put a towel around her shoulders to catch any drips but found that I made no mess anyway.
I left the lotion on for the recommended 15 minutes and then put the shampoo directly on the hair. I added some water to lather up the shampoo and then rinsed it out. I applied shampoo and washed the hair again. After the treatment I combed through the hair and found that almost all of the head lice that came out were dead. They are much easier to remove when dead than alive. When her hair dried it still looked greasy but not too bad when tied up. After a further wash the next day the greasiness was gone. I kept checking her hair regularly and after 9 days I found a few tiny head lice so I used the rest of the lotion exactly as before.

I found Linicin easy to use and liked that it didn't have a strong odour. Although it was quite difficult to wash out, it didn't leave the hair looking lank and dull like some other lotions do. In fact I found my daughter's hair had a nice shine to it after treatment. As expected there were a few baby head lice (nymphs) which managed to survive in their eggs during the first treatment, but I actually only counted 5 so I was quite pleased with that.  After the second treatment I feel confident that the cycle has been broken and now it is time to try and prevent another infestation.

I am using Linicin Prevention spray on school days and tying up my daughters hair. One application is believed to last 7 hours. The spray is easy to apply and although it has a noticeable odour on application it does fade quite quickly and becomes barely noticeable. The spray contains natural plant extracts which are known to repel head lice. It is mild and non-toxic and doesn't leave a noticeable residue on the hair. I have only been using the spray for a few days but I'm hoping it does it's job and keeps the lice at bay. I will keep you informed.



Disclaimer: The views and opinions contained in this post are entirely my own. I was sent a bottle of Linicin Lotion and a bottle of Linicin Prevention Spray to test for the review. I have not received any other payment.


* Linicin Lotion 15 min is suitable for children from 6 months and pregnant or breastfeeding mums
* Linicin Lotion 15 min is the 'Independent Community Pharmacist' Product of the Year 2012 for Child and Baby Care
Linicin is the registered trademark of Meda Pharmaceuticals ltd




Thursday, 13 September 2012

A Little More Me

Today my little man went into pre-school for his first full day. It was so hard to let him go, he's only just two and it seems way to early. It's only two and a half days a week though and he really loves it. My girls are back at school and after a rocky start with my eldest, who has high functioning autism, things have settled back into a routine. I write about them more personally on my baby blog Baby Number Five

I also have a passion for baking cakes and decorating them. I'm no professional but I'm on a journey and hopefully getting better at it. I blog about my attempts over on my cake blog Mostly Cake

I can be found on Twitter as @okesanne  where I tweet about almost anything. Trust me, it's hard to shut me up some days. I follow back everyone who is a real person.

I also have a Facebook page which is linked to this blog, it's fairly new and I don't have many likers yet, so I would be thrilled if you could take a look.

I'm a real blog addict and I love to read as well as write so please feel free to share your blog with me anytime.

Monday, 10 September 2012

Kids Fashion - Sky Tops

Now my kids are not fashion icons but they do know what they like and what they don't. Throughout the summer the girls have been wanting to wear dresses, anything floaty and princess like. Not always the best choice, especially for a day at the park but I have been able to get away with floaty tops and leggings which are more practical. I've had a real job getting them to wear their jeans, but they are quite happy to put them on if they are brightly coloured or patterned. My eldest daughter likes her jeans skinny like her grown-up sister wears, the brighter the better.
You can dress up any outfit with a nice pair of shoes or boots and sky tops are fashionable this autumn. They don't have to be boring though, you can get them in exciting colours and decorated with glitter. So it's a win win situation, I get my practicality and the girls get their pretty pretty.

At next they have a fabulous selection of jeans, here are a few teamed with gorgeous glittery heart tops.



So when my girls have made their choice the next step is a pair of high top boots. Here are three from Next, gorgeous pink glitter boots, grey and glitter boots and just so the little man doesn't miss out a real trendy pair for younger boys.


glitter boots £15-£18
silver sky tops £20-£22
tan colour block sky tops £20-£22

This post has been written for the Next Blogger Network. The opinions are my own and I have not been paid for this review.



Wednesday, 5 September 2012

Parenting Tips - Hair Washing

Stock Photo: Rubber Duck in Bath. Image: 8220
Most children love having a bath but will scream blue murder when it comes to washing their hair. Here are few things that I've done with my children to make it a little easier. I can't guarantee that they would work for your child, I'm not an expert, just a mother. Please feel free to share you tips on hair washing in the comments.


  • Let your child know what you are doing, for example, tell them you are now going to wash their back, tell them you are going to wash their face and tell them you are going to wash their hair. Sometimes just knowing what's coming next can ease their anxiety. And admit it, how would you like it if someone just poured water over your head without warning?
  • Sing a hair washing song. (You'll probably find a lot of singing in my tips, not that I've got a good singing voice but just that it's something that works with my kids) We sing, this is the way we was our hair, wash our hair, wash our hair, this is the way we wash our hair when we are having a bath. Usually it's just enough distraction to get the job done without a fuss. And if they insist on screaming, you can just drown them out with your singing ;-)
  • A big favourite with my older girls is the ceiling ducks. Stick some wall transfers (or paint a murial if you have painting skills like Michaelangelo) on the ceiling above the bathtub. Then when you go to wash their hair get them to look up and tell them a story about the pictures. With their heads tilted right back they hardly notice their hair being washed. My girls now insist on telling me a story while I wash their hair. 
  • For smaller babies you could apply the shampoo to dampened hair in the bath, then when you take them out, wrap them in a towel and then lower them backwards over the bathtub while you rinse the shampoo out.
  • Again, this usually works better when they are smaller, but you can try lying them down on their backs in the bath (don't have the water too deep for this!) and wash them while they are in the water.
  • I did try one of those visors you can buy, but I didn't have much luck, my daughter refused to wear it. It might work ok for a different child though, they do seem like a good idea.
  • If nothing else works and they don't have too much hair, you could always use a flannel to wash their hair instead of pouring water.
As always, don't worry too much, most children grow out of it eventually. I can still remember the day when my eldest told me to leave the bathroom as he was quite capable of washing his own hair. It comes soon enough, I promise.

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This post is a part of my parenting tips series, I hope you will find them interesting. There is a tab at the top of the page where you can view other tips that I have previously posted. If you would like to share your tips I'd be happy to hear them in the comments section or please visit us on Facebook and join in there.
Thank you xx
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© Photographer: Dana Rothstein | Agency: Dreamstime.com

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