FAQ’s on NorthHantsMum

I don’t know why I didn’t think of this before!!!

The “Browse NorthHantsMum” feature on NHM is awesome, even if I do say so myself :-D.

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Frequently Asked Question’s on NorthHantsMum

If you are new to NorthHantsMum

Joining the NHM Community

Pregnancy

New parents

Mum’s

Parents of a baby

Parents of a toddler

Classes and regular activities to do with your babies and children

Making parenting friends in the area

Things to do

Places to visit.

Softplay 

If you have baby items that you would like to donate

Local Weigh in clinics and breastfeeding clinics

Breastfeeding friendly places in North Hampshire

Are there any more FAQ’s that you think should be added?

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Review 2017: Messy Play

About

The Spotlight centre in Popley are running a new messy play session on Thursday (term time only) from 10:30 – 12:30. For the bargain price of £1 your little one gets the opportunity to get as messy as possible, and you don’t have to clean up!!  So far we’ve played with cereal, sand and water, paint, playdough, noodles, jelly and rice. There are small vehicles to drive through the mess and make tracks with aswell.  At the first session there was a suggestion sheet for other messes that could be made so expect a lot of different opportunities over the oncoming weeks. There has been soft play for littler ones available too, but it is not out every week.

Tips

It goes without saying but just incase i’ll say it anyway; dress children and yourself in old clothing and bring a complete change of clothes, wipes and a towel, you will need them. Don’t forget a plastic bag for the messy clothes. If you’re like me and you take your shoes off at every opportunity bring yourself a spare pair of socks. A tub of water for washing off messy feet/hands is available in the messy room. Consider a carrier for little siblings so you’ve got your hands free to help the messy ones.

Facilities

The facilities are very good, in the baby change there is a changing table, toddler toilet seats, steps, potties and disabled access. More toilets are available elsewhere in the building. You can bring buggies into the messy play room as there is plenty of space available. Benches and chairs are available for a sit down and the centre is breastfeeding friendly.  There is plenty of free parking available on site.

Food

Tea, coffee and bottled water are available to buy for £1 and water/squash and biscuits are provided for the children. You can bring snacks and eat in the room, which is advisable as the session certainly runs into our lunchtime.

Small J thoroughly enjoyed getting messy, and I thoroughly enjoyed not cleaning it all up afterwards! The Johnsons would give messy play a 5/5.

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Proteus Café Reopening Celebrations & Family Fun Day!!!

The Creation Space Café

Monday 13th February – Saturday 18th February
9.30am – 4pm Monday to Friday
11am – 3pm Saturday

To celebrate the reopening of our café, we will be running a week of promotions and activities, culminating in a family fun day!

Starting on Monday 13th February, there will be offers and discounts available in the café, giving you the perfect excuse to come and try our drinks, cakes and lunches!

An ideal opportunity to catch up with friends, or to enjoy some time away from the office!

We will be having a family fun day on Saturday 18th February, from 11am to 3pm, offering the chance to try some new activities and have some fun!

Activities will include children’s art, craft workshops using recycled materials, musical activities for younger children, a ball pit and an indoor bouncy castle! And it is all free!!

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Upcoming events at Festival Place – Feb to June 2017

Festival Place is excited to announce a number of events and activities taking place at the Basingstoke-based shopping centre over the coming months.

Kicking off this week, from Saturday 11th February to Tuesday 14th February, will be Festival Place’s Love Emergency campaign to celebrate Valentine’s Day. As well as being able to consult the ultimate guide to Valentine’s Day before they visit, shoppers will have the opportunity to take part in something extra special with surprise gifts for their loved one.

As the end of April approaches, things will be hotting up at Festival Place with the Student Lock In on 29th April, where the town’s youngsters can enjoy extended shopping hours to take advantage of a whole host of offers and discounts, with live music, freebies and giveaways. The same weekend will also see the Fashion Event, taking place on 29th and 30th April, which will showcase the season’s trends and provide inspiration for a spring wardrobe refresh.

The next date for the diary will be the much-anticipated annual food event, Eat Street, which will be running from Saturday 3rd June to Sunday 4th June. Once again, the shopping centre’s restaurants and cafés will be delighting the crowds with samples from their diverse menus and shoppers can look forward to meeting a special celebrity guest.

Festival Place Marketing Manager Charlotte Ranger said: “We are really looking forward to welcoming visitors to a number of fun events at the shopping centre this spring and are particularly excited about hosting our fifth Eat Street event. We hope that people will come from far and wide to find out firsthand all that Festival Place has to offer.”

To stay up to date with all the latest information on the events planned at Festival Place visit www.festivalplace.co.uk  or find them on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.

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Things to do w/c 13th February 2017

It’s half term in lots of counties bordering Hampshire this week, so if you have children that aren’t at school this week and are planning an outing, be warned that places in Berkshire could be very busy!

Things to do w/c 13th February 2017

Monday 13th February: Basingstoke Gymnastics Club (AM & PM)
9.15am – 10am – Walking to 4 years
10.30am – 11.15am – Parent and Toddler – 2 to 4 years
11.30am – 12.15pm – Gym Juniors – 3 to 4 years
12.15pm – 1pm – Gym Juniors – 3 to 4 years
1.15 – 2pm – Ballet – 3 to 4 years
3.45pm – 4.30pm – Trampolining – 3 years upwards
Stephenson Road, Houndmills, Basingstoke, RG21 6XR

Tuesday 14th February: Valentines Day Activity at  Basing Beans (AM)
10am – 11.30am – Birth to 5 years
British Legion Hall, Crown Lane, Old Basing, RG24 7DN

Wednesday 15th February: Twinkling Stars (AM)
10am – 12pm
Wessex Christian Fellowship, Wessex Close, Basingstoke, RG21 3NP

Thursday 16th February:  Jelly Babies (AM)
11.30am – 12.30pm – Under 5’s
Tadley Swimming Pool, New Road, Tadley, RG26 3LA

Friday 17th February: Cookery Doodle Doo (AM)
10am – Pre School age
15 Laverstoke Lane, Whitchurch, RG28 7NY

Saturday 18th February: Bugs and Minibeasts! at Chineham LibraryPresentation and craft for children aged 4+

Sunday 19th February: Dinky Disco (AM)
10am – 11am – from birth to 5 years
11.30am – 12.30pm – from 3 years to 8 years
The Bramley Room, Bramley Village Hall, The Street, Bramley, RG26 5BP

Related Pages

Activities (Classes, Playgroups, Meet Up’s)

New Classes!

Local Events

Don’t forget, if you have any events coming up that are relevant to parents in the area, please let me know via northhantsmum@gmail.com. Thanks!

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The irrational fears of a parent

My Dad died unexpectedly when I was 10 years old. He had epilepsy but only my mother and grandparents knew. They kept it very quiet because there was such stigma around epilepsy at the time he was alive.

I found him (my sister was 5 years old when he died and refused to sleep in her own bed without my Mum), when my parents alarm clock wouldn’t stop ringing. I can still see that alarm clock in my minds eye now.

One day he was there, the next he wasn’t and the world as I knew it was ripped apart.

It happened a very long time ago and I rarely talk about it now, so much so that several of my close friends don’t know that my Dad died when I was young and up until very recently, Mr NHM didn’t know the anniversary of my Dad’s death.

But it’s part of my psyche.

My Dad died when he was 36 years old. When I turned 36, it was in the back of my mind all year. When Mr NHM turned 36, I spent the whole year worrying about him.

When Mr NHM is more than 15 minutes late home, I’ve already planned his funeral and I’ve moved onto what would happen in the the second year after his death.

If Miss NHM sleeps beyond 8am (it has happened before!), part of me is whooping at the luxury of a lie in and the other part is planning out how we would tell the grandparents that she’s died.

It’s completely irrational, I know it is.

It’s such a waste of energy. Energy that I could be using to do something productive with. But I’ve learned to just go with it now and let the irrationality of it all wash over me until everything is as it should be, Mr NHM has returned home or Miss NHM has woken up and we have gotten on with our day.

But it’s always there. That irrational fear that I don’t think you can ever avoid if one of your parents dies when you are young.

I spent decades grieving after my Dad’s death. Grieving for him, grieving for the life we lost and being sucked into my mothers grief. Such a waste of time and energy.

But Miss NHM being born, it healed me.

I was blessed enough that I fell in love with her as soon as I saw her. She brought light into my life like nothing else ever had, even more than the epic love affair that Mr NHM and I were so blessed to have when we first met.

Miss NHM’s birth helped me to see the light in the world.

I know it’s likely to get worse too, this completely irrational planning. Miss NHM is 5 years and 11 months old and I know where she is every minute of the day. But as she gets older,  as she learns independence and tests her boundaries (the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree, sigh), I know I’m not always going to know where she is.

I put myself in some incredibly dangerous situations when I became a teenager, probably because of what I had experienced in my earlier life. I REALLY hope that she doesn’t!

I also hope that she will never completely understand the irrational worry that I will have when I don’t know where she is.

But I’m not thinking about that now. I am extremely thankful that she is young enough not to understand any of this and that my worries are completely ridiculous.

Even if I have theoretically planned her funeral and the first year of her death out!!!?!?!!!!

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Inspirational Mum’s: “The Boppypants and the pants that blew off”

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Hello

I would like to tell you a bit about what me and another local mum have been up too.

Wendy and I have been working since November on creating a children’s story book based on a story Wendy wrote over a year ago.

We have made her dream words on paper turn into a fab (if I do say so myself) children’s book called “The Boppypants and the pants that blew off”.

On Thursday we received a order of 50 of our books and launched our website and Facebook page …. today we have sold out! And have a second delivery of 50 coming Friday!!

This story is the first in a series of books we are going to be writing with the second coming out end of march hopefully.

The website is www.boppypants.com and the Facebook page is www.facebook.com/Boppypants

You will find images on both and a sneak reveal of the book on the website.

Sam

Illustrator of The Boppypants

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Top Tip 39: What to do with your old cot mattress!

Thank you to Shona for putting together this post!!!

NHM readers suggested uses for old cot mattresses

I asked the Friends of  my “Louise nhm Smith” profile on Facebook What did you do with your cot mattress when you didn’t need it any more?  I don’t really want to dump it but I’m sure you can’t recycle mattresses. Seems such a waste to take it to the tip”.  Thank you very much to everyone who responded, here are the suggestions:

Please note, these are in no particular order!

1. Animal Rescue Centres

Karen suggested trying animal rescue centres as they sometimes take them and use them as beds.

2. Re-use / Upcycle

(Suggested by Poppy, Karen, Susan, Michelle and Karen)

If you have the room to keep them then old mattresses are great for a selection of uses, such as:

  • To get out for the kids to jump on when they feel the urge to jump on the sofa or bed
  • A spare bed for when you have friends staying over with little ones or for camping trips
  • As a base for tent/den making
  • Smaller mattresses (such as moses basket mattresses) make great bathroom or garden kneelers
  • Recover and use as a window seat cushion

3. Send out to Romania

Vicki suggested contacting Ruth at Christ Church Chineham as she arranges for old mattresses to be sent out to Romania.

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Child-friendly restaurants in Basingstoke

Child-friendly restaurants in Basingstoke

TOWN CENTRE

Giraffe – Town Centre

Zizzi’s – Top of Town Centre

Wagamamas – Town Centre

  • Baby Changing facilities are available in the Disabled toilet
  • Seating is on benches and generally not comfortable for breastfeeding
  • Fast and healthy food
  • If you sit at the tables near the entrance, there is enough parking for pushchairs next to the tables at the back
  • If you are pressed for time (evening feeds, etc.) you can check out your local Wagamama’s menu on the iPhone or iPad Wagamama application or check online in advance. The Mobile Applications allow you to place your order so it is ready when you arrive. You can also order takeaway using this option.
  • Excellent air con, so if it’s hot outside, this is a great place to be!

Pizza Express – Town Centre

Coal Bar and GrillTown Centre

  • One free child meal Monday – Friday between 12pm and 5pm with an adult spending £10

Pizza HutTown Centre

Debenhams Town Centre

  • Two different types of highchair, one for babies who can’t sit up and standard ones for babies who can sit up.
  • Toilets right next to restaurant with baby changing facilities
  • Selection of children’s food

Nandos Town Centre

  • Pushchairs to be left by front door
  • Not much space for highchairs

OUT OF TOWN

Pizza Express – South Ham

  • Baby Changing facilities in Disabled toilets, with cover for babies to lie on
  • Children’s menu available
  • Parking in car park is very small. Alternative parking is available at the football ground which is 3 mins walk away, however, you will need your pushchair as it’s too far to carry the car seat from.
  • Dyson hand dryers (it’s the little things that count!)
  • Very friendly people who like babies!
  • Check vouchercloud.com for discounts before going

Pizza Hut – Same shopping area as Toys R Us

The Harvester – South Ham

  • Tables aren’t big enough for Pushchairs
  • Nappy Bin smelt horrible
  • Menu shows the calorie content of each item
  • New kids menu and there are 2 sizes of children’s meals, one recommended for under 5’s and one for under 10’s

Mcdonalds Drive through – Same shopping area as Toys R Us

  • If you’re feeling more slummy mummy than yummy mummy and can’t be bothered to mobilise the army, this is a very quick place to get lunch

Morrisons CafeSouth Ham

  • Baby changing facility – not right near the restaurant but not far.
  • Space for pushchairs and highchairs
  • Baby food heating station and they even have disposable bibs
  • Small children’s play area
  • One child per adult meal over £4.50 eats free after 3pm
  • They have sandwich boxes where you can pick your snack/sweet for children as well as hot meals
  • Can be quite slow at lunchtime

Sainsbury’s CafeHatch Warren

The Beech ArmsOakley (Carvery)

The Dome Cafe ProjectBrighton Hill

Nelson’s DinerKingsclere

  • Friendly staff who welcome children
  • Good kids menu
  • Portions are large

SubwayBrighton Hill

  • Breastfeeding welcome
  • Children’s meal deals
  • Highchairs available

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NHM readers recommend places to buy a cabin bed from

NHM readers recommend places to buy a cabin bed from

In response to a question from a NHM Reader, I asked the Friends of  my “Louise nhm Smith” profile on Facebook “Where is the best place to buy a cabin bed from, for a 4 year old?” . 

Thank you very much to everyone who responded and thank you to Shona for putting together this post!!! 

Please note, these are in no particular order!

1. Archers Sleep Centre

Archers Sleepcentre

Emma says “Good prices and very solid.  We have the lollipop pink and white one”.

2. Aspace

ASPACE | Exclusive Children’s Bedrooms | Inspirational Spaces for …

Sarah says “not cheap but very good quality & service”.

3. Facebook

Samantha says “Facebook selling pages are always worth a look”.

4. Next

Furniture & Homeware | Home & Garden | Next Official Site

Kate says “We got ours from Next, it’s really nice, looks good and is solid. We’re quite happy sitting on it with her to read stories. Not too high that I’m worried she’ll fall too far either.

5. Julian-Bowen

Julian Bowen Limited

Jason says “We bought a ‘Domino’ Bunk Bed from www.julian-bowen.co.uk, which we have been very happy with.  Note, most bunk beds will say 6+, but we have had our eldest in from three; obviously common sense applies and whether a bunk bed is suitable for sub-six will be child specific.

6. Mrs Flat Pack

MrsFlatPack.co.uk

Louise says “Got all of mine from Mrs flat pack online. Amazing and quick service.

7. Rainbow Wood

Rainbow Wood South | Children’s Beds and Furniture | Thuka, Stompa …

Kate says “Rainbow wood in Farnham – specialises in childrens beds and furniture.”

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Basingstoke Baby & Children’s Market – TOMORROW!!!!!

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Goods for sale: 40 sellers selling excellent quality like new baby and children’s items from birth to 8yrs plus a small selection of unique businesses in the baby and children’s industry showcasing their products and services all under one roof!

Where: Aldworth School, Western Way, Basingstoke, RG22 6HA
****OVERFLOW PARKING**** at the rear of the school via Pinkerton Road, RG22 6RN

Sat 4th Feb- 2-3:30pm
Venue: All Baby & children’s markets are held in quality INDOOR venues.

Sellers: £15 preloved table, £25 for a business stall

ATM: there is no ATM on site, so please come prepared with lots of cash!

Admission: £1 entry per adult, kids FREE

Parking: free parking around the front and back of the school

For more information relating to this event contact Tom McCarthy on 07940 835792 or email: tom@babyandchildrensmarket.co.uk

baby-and-childrens-market

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