NHM Readers Recommend: Buggy Friendly Walks with a Tea/Coffee Shop at the End

I recently asked the Friends of my “Louise nhm Smith” profile on Facebook if they could help with the following question: “Do you know of any buggy friendly walks with tea/coffee shop at the end? Know of Eastrop, Beggarwood and War Memorial.”

Many thanks for your responses, listed below in no particular order:

NHM Readers Recommend: Buggy Friendly Walks with a Tea/Coffee Shop at the End

Rebecca said “There is one in Rooksdown on Thursday morning. We haven’t started to yet but have been talking of ending the walk at a local Costa or with a picnic.”

Mary said “Basingwoods is good for buggies. There is sometimes a cafe in the popley fields community centre but i can’t remember dates etc. Also from there you can walk up to st Gabriel’s which sometimes has a cafe. I think you need to check their websites for times.”

Emma said “Sherfield on London is nice! Take the little ones to see the ducks, play on the park, walk all around the big greens and across the streams and then there’s a lovely cafe on the corner with a post office in the back”

Wendy said “Greenham common are on the verge of opening their cafe in the old control tower. It will be staffed by volunteers so not open every day. Check their facebook page for details. https://www.facebook.com/GreenhamControlTower/

Lauren said “Beggarwood is ok and the community centre has a really nice cafe”

Karen M said “Kempshott/oakley multi user path and jolly ollie’s in oakley or kitty’s in kempshott”

Karen J said “Go on ready steady mum’s group”

Ruza said “Farnham great park, and the cafe is reality good.”

Ruchira said “Ready steady mums walk at Eastrop park on a Wednesday at 1”

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NHM Readers Recommend: Clubs/Meets for a Baby and Toddler

I recently asked the Friends of my “Louise nhm Smith” profile on Facebook if they could help with a question I had received: “just wondered if you could ask people about clubs/meets etc for a baby and toddler.? 1 month and a 2 year old.”

Many thanks for all of your replies, listed below in no particular order:

NHM Readers Recommend: Clubs/Meets for a Baby and Toddler

Naomi said “Melrose Hall run a tot group on a tues and fri”

Claire said “Coffee & Chat at Brookvale is lovely. Toddler section and baby section. Just £2 donation. Friday’s from 10am https://www.facebook.com/NCTCoffeeandChat/

Debbie said “Michelle runs tots play plus helps (I think) at coffee morning on Fridays at Sherfield Park.” www.facebook.com/totsplaybasingstoke www.facebook.com/bumpintomums

Any said “Basing Beans on Tuesdays 10-11.30 is great. It’s at Lychpit village hall. Lots for toddlers plus baby area and a cup of tea or coffee for you…https://m.facebook.com/groups/204635339562838

Sarah said “I run Hartbeeps multi-sensory classes for newborns through to preschoolers in Hook on a Tuesday morning. You can bring your little one to Happy House Class with your older one. https://www.facebook.com/hartbeepsfarnham/

Jo said “Caterpillar music”

Hayley said “caterpillar music is perfect, took my little one from about 3 weeks old with my 2.5 year old:)”

Jaz said “www.facebook.com/CaterpillarMusicBasingstoke Even better- siblings are FREE!”

Steph said “I run netmums Basingstoke meet ups once a month for people to get out with the little ones and make new friends…you can find the group here: https://m.facebook.com/groups/1833762103604347

Rachael said “Under 5’s at Sherfield Park on a Tuesday morning and bump into mums on a Friday morning both 10am-12pm and both very welcoming and friendly”

Allison said “Two year olds are welcome to Tot Cross Buns…mummies are welcome to bring younger siblings too Www.facebook.com/totcrossbuns

Kelly said “Www.facebook.com/jiggybasingstoke

Anna said “I’m a midwife running a newborn and baby massage courses in Camberley available to book now https://www.mummasandbeans.co.uk/camberley/

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NHM Readers Recommend: Someone to make a Taggie

I recently had a question from an NHM Reader: “I’m looking for someone to make me a Taggie which has a child’s name stitched onto it. Can you ask if anyone has any suggestions”.

Many thanks to the NHM Community for your responses, listed below in no particular order:

NHM Readers recommend someone to make a taggie

Madeleine said “Easy2Name may be able to help you…”

Stephany said “Lynsey everytime!”

Heidi said “Frames & Keepsakes By Liz

Debbie said “Mandy sew whatever is fantastic and local.” https://m.facebook.com/Sewwhatever2016/

Hayley said “Danielle is amazing at that sort of thing”  Dreamy Owla

  • Kelly said “Yep def get Danielle on the case”

Katie said “Little menace made some for me and they were gorgeous. Super quick delivery too”

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NHM Readers Recommend: Local Places to go for Large Groups with Pushchairs

I recently asked the NHM Community “I’m looking for suggestions of local places to go for large groups of Mums with pushchairs and little ones under 6 months old, especially places to eat or drink at.”

Many thanks for all your responses, listed below in no particular order:

NHM Readers recommend local places to go for large groups with pushchairs

Rachel said “Wellington country park, eastrop park, memorial park. When I met up with the mum’s from my NCT group we found Longbridge Mill to be accommodating (we just used to warn them when we booked).”

Emma said “Beggarwood park- there’s a cafe at the new community centre

Kate said “Tea bar quite roomy in the afternoon when it’s quieter.”

Helen said “Giraffe have always been very welcoming for our buggyfit socials. They have a big room at the back they let us use and Mums can bring in buggies and feed comfortably

Lisette said “Our NCT group often met at Starbucks in festival place. At the tables and chairs outside. Always plenty of room”

  • Mary replied “We also cause total havoc on a weekly basis as the ‘outside’ seating upstairs means we aren’t in anyone’s way.”

Hannah said “Hook garden centre are good”

  • Lottie replied “Another vote for hook garden centre here”
  • Pauline said “Hook Home and Garden Centre great kids play area and cafe with amazing cakes!

Jessica said “Aingels Cafe and Bistro, lots of parking, relaxed environment and plenty of room.”

Tracy said “Dome cafe Brighton Hill is fab.”

Sarah said “Nando’s rearranged their outdoor tables for a big group of us!”

Jo said “More of the Good Stuff has lots of space and a little fenced off indoor play corner too. LOVELY cake!

Steph said “The cafe in John Lewis has loads of room but that’s more lunch/cake”

Karen said “Roses cafe

Kathryn said “Redfields garden centre in church crookham might be too far for your group”

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NHM Readers Recommend: Cranial Osteopaths for Babies

An NHM Reader recently asked: “I wondered if you might know of any cranial osteopaths that treat babies at all? I have seen a few online but would love some recommendations if possible? Any thoughts gratefully received!”

Many thanks to the NHM Community for your responses, listed below in no particular order:

NHM Readers recommend cranial osteopaths for babies

Val said “Bramley Osteopaths are great and do baby cranial”

  • Natasha said “Second this. I took my daughter here.”
  • Helena said “I’ll vouch for Becky Hall too. She worked wonders on one reflux baby and a toddler that wouldn’t sleep.”
  • Stephanie said “Another vote for Bramley”
  • Lowri said “Becky Hall at Bramley Osteopaths – miracle worker!”
  • Nita said “Another vote for Becky Hall at Bramley”
  • Lindsay said “Becky at Bramley is fab. Both of my boys were treated by her, one as a baby and one as a toddler.”

Melanie said “Sally Mathews did my bubba.” https://www.facebook.com/wessexchiropractic/

Laura said “Physical balance in Overton are great.

  • Hayley said “Physical balance in overton”
  • Angela said “We went to Physical Balance in Overton and they were great! I was a little sceptical but very desperate and it worked wonders.”

Leanne said “Kate Rosati (Latham) treated our baby. She’s great! http://www.listening-hands.co.uk/

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NHM Readers: Games and activities for a baby shower

In response to a question from a NHM Reader, I asked the Friends of my “Louise nhm Smith” profile on Facebook “Any ideas for fun games or activities for an afternoon tea baby shower?”

Many thanks for your responses, listed below:

NHM Readers advise games and activities for a baby shower

Sara said “Guess the weight of the baby. Alphabet quiz with every letter starting with baby related things. Google baby showers and I’m sure many printable things will pop up. Pass the dummy using drinking straws only using your mouth!”

Shona said “We had cards at mine and everyone wrote what day, time and weight they thought baby would be born. We also played a game with nappies and tried to guess what was in them (piccalilli, marmite, chocolate spread). Anagrams of popular baby names.”

Rebekah said “Ask the mums of the parents to be for stories of when they were babies. Then mix the true stories with lies and get the party to guess the true ones.”

Fiona said “Guess the body part on scan pictures game. It can be really difficult to guess and is great for Mums, grannies that missed out on scans.”

Gemma said “At mine we did a guess the size of the bump with everyone cutting ribbon that they thought would be the closest in size to go round me lol. Another was ‘beer belly or bump’ using close up Google images – it was great”

Rachel said “I printed out and photocopied pics of mine and my other half’s faces and then cut out features and mixed them up; guests then made a pic of what they thought our baby would look like, it was hilarious (and thankfully he doesn’t look like any of them!)”

Rachel said “Naming as many songs as you can that have the word ‘baby’ in the title”

Deborah said “Penny in the jar. Hold a 2p between your knees and get it in the jar at the end of the room. It is a very funny game. Also my sister printed pin the sperm on the egg. Hope this helps”

Nikki said “Decorating plain white vests for the baby (fabric pens, embroidery etc)”

Laura said “Bit unpleasant but guess the baby food flavour – lots of baby food jars but hide the labels and ask your guests to guess, it’s very tricky as they basically all taste the same! Provide wine to wash away the taste!”

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NHM Reader Recommendations: Places to go with an 8 month old and no transport

An NHM Reader asked “I was wondering if you could help me out. I live in Basingstoke and have an 8-month-old son. I would love for us to be able to go out for the day somewhere, but I’m not sure where is good for babies. I don’t drive either, so it would have to be accessible by public transport or walking distance. I do have a railcard though. Do you have any ideas?”

Thank you to the NHM Readers for the below replies. Thank you also to Juliet for putting this post together! 

NHM Reader Recommendations: Places to go with an 8 month old and no transport

Lottie says “There’s a bus to Marwell Zoo which I think you can pick up in Winchester so you could get the train there”

Hannah says “Beale Park is a short train ride away. Also Millers Ark on the way to Hook…. has a bus stop not far from its entrance.”

Helen says “I second the Beale Park suggestion. As well as animals and the train they have a big sand pit and paddling pool. Go during the term time and it’ll be quiet.”

Vicky says “I downloaded this app it’s really good tells you what’s going on groups etc in your area for the age group you are looking for” https://hoop.co.uk

Wendy says “A walk by the Thames at Reading (there’s a park by Reading bridge and lots of swans). The New Forest has tourist buses in the summer. Paultons Park has a bus from Southampton station. The number 11 bus stops outside Manydown. Bus to Shakespeare Road (Popley East) for the Splash Park.

Jason says “The New Forest also has a train station”

Cathy says “Lots of free events coming up around town http://www.basingstokefestival.co.uk/…/cate…/free-events

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NHM Reader Recommendations: Entertainment for a First Birthday Party

An NHM Reader asked “I am looking for entertainment for my daughter’s first birthday party. So something like Baby Sensory or Caterpillar Music. I am currently checking their availability but need to look for back up in case neither can accommodate me. Would appreciate any suggestions.”

Many thanks for the responses from the NHM community, listed below in no particular order:

Tots Play

Tots Play Basingstoke & Hook

Michelle said “Hi, I run Tots Play classes in the area and also do birthday parties, get in touch for more info www.totsplay.co.uk/basingstoke

Jiggly Wrigglers

Jiggy Wrigglers Andover & surrounding villages

Gemma said “I run Jiggy Wrigglers, we are very well established in Andover and heading to Basingstoke so would be happy to come and entertain. If you’d like to know more here’s our page and just pm me.

Dinky Disco

Dinky Disco

Tanya said “Dinky Disco’s”

Cesca said “Dinky disco are fab”

Victoria said “Defo Dinky Discos! Nikki is AMAZING”

Nikki said “Thanks so much for the recommendations Tanya, Cesca and Victoria. Take a peep at our FB page and full party details on our website. Don’t hesitate to drop me a line if you have any questions”

Lucy said “Dinky Disco! I’ve had compliments for months following our 1 year olds birthday party.”

Pop Tots

Pop Tots

Alison said “Pop Tots”

Jollypop Entertainment

Jollypop Entertainment

Grace said “Jollypop Entertainment run ‘jollypoppets’ parties for little ones. Rhythm and Rhyme time type fun!”

Gym Minis

Gym Minis

Emma said “Gym Minis would have a good selection for you and they do parties”

Caterpillar Music

Caterpillar Music

Jaz said “Nicky does an awesome job at Caterpillar Music”

Hartbeeps

Hartbeeps Farnham, Hook and Godalming

Sarah said “I do multi-sensory 1st birthday parties/ I am a franchisee of Hartbeeps. If you look on our website you can see what we are all about”

Baby Sensory

Baby Sensory

Claire said “I’m Claire from Baby Sensory. Please feel free to pm me and I can check dates for you”

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Hampshire Doulas

What is a doula and why would you want one on your birth or postnatal team?

If you heard of something you could take into labour with you that would make you

  • More likely to give birth vaginally with neither ventouse nor forceps nor caesarean
  • Less likely to use pain medications or to have a caesarean birth
  • More likely to be satisfied with your experience
  • More likely to have a shorter labour
  • Less likely to have postpartum depression
  • Your baby could be less likely to have low five-minute Apgar scores (the score used when babies’ health and well-being are assessed at birth and shortly afterwards).

Would you want to give it a try?

According to reviews of research the type of support doulas supply has been shown to do all these things.

You’re probably wondering what exactly do doulas do that can have all these potential benefits? I asked a couple of your local doulas what they bring to your birth team.

Alex and Desiree both work in North Hampshire. As they talk about becoming doulas and what they love about being doulas I hope you will see that the benefits are so wide ranging even for times when that “more likely to” in the research doesn’t turn out to be definitely will. Perhaps we should add to the list, in our experience having a doula on your team will make you more likely to realise how amazing and wonderful you truly are.

Alex with clients
Desiree

How did you hear about doulas or first start thinking it might be for you?

Alex: Unknowingly, I have doulaed for many years. The saying “it takes a village to raise a child” sits very closely to me as this is how I started my Doula journey. Then a woman in my village, who I offered support to, asked me if I knew of any doulas in our area. The seed was planted as I supported her and decided to start my Doula journey officially.

Within 2 weeks of deciding to go for it I signed up for my Doula training course and within less than a year I became too busy to continue my long standing medical career. And I love what I do!

Desiree: I heard about Doula’s through my sister as she chose to have a Doula support them through their birth. I was very naive and found it odd and rather ‘hippy’. My sister had the most amazing support from her doula.

Then when was pregnant and began planning my birth I knew I wanted a Doula present and having had a long labour my doula was consistent throughout. It really sealed my desire to be able to offer that same continuity of care, calming presence and support that I received to other women and their partners.

What’s your favourite thing about being a Doula?

Desiree: It’s such a privilege for me to share such an intimate, life changing experience with a woman. Seeing her grow, her strength and her ability to birth regardless of what kind of birth – I truly value that. I love seeing women flourish as they step into motherhood, whether it’s the first time or third time.

Alex: The variety of women and couples I meet and being part of their pregnancy, birth and beyond. I feel extremely privileged being a doula. Seeing women making their own informed choices whatever situation they find themselves in. And then seeing women feeling empowered and those lush newborn baby cuddles at my first postnatal meeting.

What are your top tips for planning a positive birth?

Alex: Gather information, know about your choices, trust your body and your instincts. Never take “no” for an answer unless all resources and options explored. Hire a Doula!

Desiree: Birth is a wonderful journey that can sometimes be smooth and straightforward or it may be windy and long. Birth can be like a picnic – you may have 4 seasons in one day.  As much as we can plan, there are unforeseen events that can happen. Whilst it’s great to have a plan, it’s important to know what your options are and know that you have choices. Having a birth plan in place can help. Being prepared for all eventualities puts you in a far stronger position afterwards to feel you retained some choice and control in what happened. Understanding our hormones and our environment plays a huge part in how our bodies relax and function during the birthing process.

Do you have any top tips for new parents?

Desiree: Listen to yourself. Family and friends have the best intentions when they feel they need to ‘offer’ their advice, however there is so much conflicting advice it becomes an information overload. Do what you feel is best for you and your child. Everything your baby needs you already have.

Alex: Restrict visitors, take your time, enjoy getting to know each other, accept help (meals, house chores, childcare for older siblings). Be aware of the 4th trimester. Be gentle on yourself and never compare yourself with other new mums! Sleep when your baby sleeps during the day, even if it’s a cat nap here and there. Get support from a postnatal Doula and don’t feel afraid to ask for help!

Now you’ve had the chance to get to know a couple of our local doulas a little bit. If you decide to include a doula as part of your birth team you will get to know her really well in the antenatal sessions you have together. More importantly, she will get to know you and how she can support you and the rest of your birth team the best way for you. If you’ve got more questions you might like to check out our frequently asked questions page http://www.hampshiredoulas.co.uk/frequently-asked-questions/ and always feel free to get in touch and ask more questions if you don’t find yours is answered there.

hampshiredoulas.co.uk hampshiredoulas@gmail.com facebook.com/hampshiredoulas

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Party with Baby Sensory and Toddler Sense!

Spaces still available

Got a new baby and fancy giving Baby Sensory a try? Or perhaps you have a toddler and want to wear them out in a Toddler Sense session? Join us for a party session on Saturday 7th July in aid of B.A.B.I.E.S!

The incredibly busy and ridiculously talented Michelle Grzbiela is offering three fantastic 45 minute sessions to raise funds for Basingstoke breastfeeding support. There will be two classes aimed at babies from birth to 13 months (10am and 11am), and one mixed session (12 noon) aimed at children 13 months to five years (younger siblings welcome at a discounted rate).

The sessions will be at Hatch Warren Community Centre at 10am, 11am and 12 noon.

BABY SENSORY 10AM – BOOK NOW https://nct.intrabiz.co.uk/cgi-bin/sys.cgi…

BABY SENSORY 11AM – BOOK NOW https://nct.intrabiz.co.uk/cgi-bin/sys.cgi…

TODDLER SENSE (MIXED SESSION) BOOK NOW https://nct.intrabiz.co.uk/cgi-bin/sys.cgi…

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