September 2018 Availability at Cuckoo Meadow Pre-School

Cuckoo Meadow pre-school currently has spaces available for September. If you have any friends, family or neighbours looking for pre-school places please share this leaflet.

Cuckoo Meadow is the most amazing, nurturing environment for your little ones – OFSTED agrees, we’re rated Outstanding!!

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Anna’s Challenges

Hi, my name is Rachel Marke and I founded the charity Anna’s Challenges just over 7 years ago. Our aim is to help support children with Cystic Fibrosis in Basingstoke and surrounding areas.

It started a bit by accident – 7 years ago my daughter Anna, who has Cystic Fibrosis (CF), was having one of her many 2 week admissions at the North Hampshire Hospital and she was asked to try out a vibrating vest which could really help shift the mucus clogged up in her lungs.

The problem was the vest was on loan to the physio team and they didn’t have the budget to purchase one. I put on my Facebook status that I’d like to try and raise some money to help buy it and the response was amazing!

We were soon thinking of a name to spearhead the fundraising and soon after Anna’s Challenges was born.  We soon became a registered charity and have a group of wonderful trustees.

We had no idea at the time that it would become as big as it has and this is purely down to the amazing support we receive from friends, family, local people and local businesses that have chosen to support us, whether it be through fundraising, offering their services, attending our events or simply helping to share our news/events on social media.

I have been overwhelmed over the years with the love and support we receive and it has enabled us to really branch out in the many ways we can support the children with CF and their families.

We also funded and arranged for the assessment room on G Floor to be totally redecorated (my cousin did it) and this is my favourite photo of part of it.

Anna takes over 35 tablets a day, she has to do 3 sets of physio a day, 3 nebulisers and two inhalers every single day – all whilst she’s well.

When she’s ill it increases significantly and also with 2 week admissions. Kids with CF have such intense daily regimes so it’s really great that we can help make their day to day lives a bit easier with improved physio and medical equipment and make it more comfortable for their 2 week admissions.

 

We are guided by the fantastic CF team at the hospital on how we can best help the children and their families.

We are able to support them through donating physio equipment, physio toys, medical equipment, donations that make the hospital rooms more comfortable – more home-from-home, we fund the CF sibling support group, we provide physical activity grants and travel grants to the families, family days out, and however else we can help to make their lives a bit easier and hopefully sometimes, a bit more fun too!

On the 6th October 2018 we are hosting our annual Black Tie Charity Ball at the beautiful Oakley Hall. It’s a great excuse to get glammed up with friends and have a wonderful evening full of music, dancing, laughter and lovely food all whilst helping support children with Cystic Fibrosis.

If you’d like more information, or to buy tickets, please go to our website www.annaschallenges.co.uk.  

If you’d like to keep up to date with our latest news and events, find us at the following:

Facebook – facebook.com/annaschallenges
Twitter – @annaschallenges
Web – www.annaschallenges.co.uk
email – contact@annaschallenges.co.uk

Please get in contact if you have any questions, would like to do a challenge for us or attend one of our events – we’d love to hear from you!

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‘Juglife’ – One Night Only

The poster for new theatrical project ‘Juglife’ is pretty eye-catching. It features two topless women, save for a well-placed sippie cup, a Hooters mug, a breastfeeding doll and a man’s hand (whose hand?!) Lindsey Lawman and Stacy Hart are pretty brave. Either that, or they’re keen to sell tickets. Whatever the reason, there’s no denying that it’s hard to ignore. And that’s just how Lindsey and Stacy like it.

Juglife is a brand new verbatim play focused solely on the subject of breasts. And before you ask, no, they will not be performing topless. As Lindsey Lawman points out:

“Naked boobs tend to draw focus away from what you’re saying. Or the fact you’re speaking at all. So we’ll definitely be wearing clothes.”

If you didn’t know already, verbatim theatre is based on the spoken words of real people. Having put the call out on social media for women interested in discussing the topic of knockers, Lindsey and Stacy trekked across the country recording their stories. From those interviews, the pair have created an evening of monologues, taking a light-hearted look at the trials and tribulations of boobs; tales of loving them and hating them, gaining them and losing them, and everything in between. The results have been surprising, illuminating, and occasionally heartbreaking. Lindsey Lawman explains:

“Breasts are body parts like elbows or knees. But unlike elbows and knees, they carry a host of narratives which (can) inform a woman’s entire identity. Breasts are sexual, comforting, funny, intimidating, offensive, limiting, nurturing, dangerous. They can be a source of anxiety, of confidence, of pleasure, and of pain. The women we have spoken to have been brutally honest about the impact their breasts have had on their lives. There was a lot of laughter (one women spoke about her enviable ability to breastfeed herself!) But there were also times when our hearts ached listening to stories of crushingly low self-confidence, of defeat, of loss. We are so tremendously grateful for their bravery in sharing their stories, and we have no doubt there will a real sense of shared experience among the audience.”

That’s not to say it’s all doom and gloom – far from it. Lindsey and Stacy say they’re keen to step away from the oft repeated headline of ‘breast shaming’, and instead want to celebrate the complexity of the female experience through the wonderfully fleshy lens of boobs.

Performed at The Tea Bar as part of The Basingstoke Festival ‘Discover Art in Unusual Places’ (www.basingstokefestival.co.uk), Juglife won’t feel like the usual piece of theatre. The audience will be sat at tables (with crucial access to the bar to sample the specially created breast-inspired cocktails!) as the actors perform not on a stage, but from within the crowd. Alongside the monologues will be a little bit of boob bingo (who knew there was 100 words for breasts?) and a rack raffle (with appropriately themed boob prizes). A percentage of the evening’s proceeds will go to help support NCT Basingstoke breastfeeding support.

When they are not raising tiny humans or performing, Stacy heads up the Basingstoke branch of the Women’s Equality Party, and Lindsey works as fundraising co-ordinator for Basingstoke NCT. As part of a series of fundraising events for the breastfeeding drop-in (or B.A.B.I.E.S – Babies And Breastfeeding, Information, Encouragement, Support) ‘Juglife’ is swiftly followed by Secret Art Basingstoke, a postcard art exhibition and sale taking place between 23 July and 4 August.

You can see ‘Juglife’ at The Tea Bar, Basingstoke on June 20 at 7.45pm. Tickets (£7), available to purchase online at www.eventbrite.co.uk.

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Gok Wan One Size Fits All – Secrets to Style & Body Confidence

Gok Wan, “the makeover maestro” has set himself a new challenge – to instill a sense of body  confidence in women up and down the country through a series of unmissable, fashion and style masterclasses – Gok Wan One Size Fits All – Secrets to Style & Body Confidence. Gok will also be sharing plenty of insider secrets at these exclusive events that will take place at hotels around the UK from 30 September 2018.

Guests at Gok Wan One Size Fits All – Secrets to Style & Body Confidence will have a unique opportunity to get up close and personal with the man who encouraged women and men to ‘get naked’ in his six season Channel 4 series How To Look Good Naked and is now a regular on ITV 1’s  This Morning sharing his fashion and style tips.

Gok Wan One Size Fits All – Secrets to Style & Body Confidence will start at 11.00 am with a delicious 5* brunch and a glass of bubbly before enjoying two live runway shows featuring merchandise from local clothing boutiques. The shows will be followed by Gok’s Style School – where Gok will break down the myths about this season’s biggest trends before moving on to a bit of nip and tuck (no surgery required!), with a body shape and control-wear masterclass – Gok, of course, can’t wait to get his hands on those ‘bangers’! One lucky guest will also be plucked out from the crowd for a special Gok Wan Makeover on the day!

All guests will have the opportunity to shop in the fabulous Dreamspace that will feature an array of luxury local lifestyle products; from fragranced candles to exquisitely bespoke hand-crafted jewellery. It’s a jam-packed, fun-fuelled event that’s not to be missed, and if that’s not enough, everyone leaves with a goody bag of free products.

Tickets are on sale now with details on www.gokfashion.com
Facebook @gokonesizefitsall / Instagram @gokonesizefitsall / #OneSizeFitsAll / #OSFA

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The Sleepy Teepee Party

Hi my name is Karina and I am a mum to three children (12,9 & 4yrs). I have recently started my company The Sleepy Teepee Party. My children love a sleepover and making dens/tents. So I decided to put the two together and create The Sleepy Teepee Party.

What we do

We are here to make your sleepover’s easy, fun and one you will never forget! Choose your theme and leave the rest to us! Hassle free as we will deliver, set up and style your sleepover and return the next day to pack it all away. We are based in Basingstoke and cover a 20mile radius (Anything outside of the 20miles will incur additional mileage costs).

Our themes so far:

  • Unicorn
  • Camo/army
  • Mystical
  • Hollywood/Movie

I am always looking for new themes, so if you have any suggestions please get in contact.

What’s included

Each tent includes the following:
  • Inflatable bed
  • duvet pillow and covers
  • fairy lights
  • bunting and decorations
  • a helium balloon
  • personalised chalk board
  • breakfast table at the end of the bed
  • a lantern with battery powered candle
  • sleep mask
Delivery (within 20 miles of RG22 postcode), set up and collection the next day.

 

Why not add a Little Extra to your party, so you don’t have to do a thing.
  • Midnight Feast box
  • Breakfast box
  • Cupcakes to suit your theme
  • Hot Chocolate, mashmallows and squirty cream
  • Toiletries (toothbrush, shower gel and/or toothpaste, flannel which can be personalised)
  • Pamper package

Keep up to date with our latest news and photos on

Twitter @TheSleepyTeepee
Please get in contact if you have any questions or would like to book a party.

 

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How NorthHantsMum supports local Businesses

I’m a HUGE fan of local businesses and supporting the local economy. Especially when many NHM Readers are local business owners themselves.

It’s one of the things that I am proud of NHM for, being able to directly impact the local economy by publicising local businesses. Even more importantly, by directly impacting local families, either as the providers of goods and services or the purchasers of goods and services.

There are several ways that we support local Businesses on NorthHantsMum…

Guest Post

Guest Posts are FREE and are a great way to publicise your local business to local parents.

Any local business can have a Guest Post on NHM. You can find out more at the following post: http://www.northhantsmum.co.uk/2016/12/20/a-guest-post-vs-a-review-on-northhantsmum/

You can find a link to all previous Guest Posts here: http://www.northhantsmum.co.uk/category/guest-post-2/

NHM Reviews

NorthHantsMum is quite famous for our reviews of local places to visit, things to do and places to eat. They are often very popular posts because people seem to prefer Reviews.

You can find all of the Reviews here: http://www.northhantsmum.co.uk/2017/01/18/list-of-reviews-on-northhantsmum/ 

Sometimes we decide to write a Review about a place because we absolutely love it, (sometimes we DON’T write Reviews because friends have made us SWEAR not to tell the NHM Community about a secret/special location that they know of! lol), but more often than not we are asked to write a Review after sampling the local businesses offering.

If this is something that might be suitable for your business, please have a look at this post: http://www.northhantsmum.co.uk/2016/12/20/a-guest-post-vs-a-review-on-northhantsmum/

I have several NHM Readers who help me to write these Reviews and I’m very proud of them all for all of their hard work in doing such a fab job writing these posts.

Business Directory

The Business Directory is coming into it’s own at the moment!

You can have a free or paid advert on the NorthHantsMum Business Directory.

Free listings have just the name of your business and either a website or facebook page listed. If you would like your business to be listed with a free listing, please just email me the name of your business and the website or facebook page you would like us to link too.

Free adverts never expire, but once a paid advert “runs” out on it’s time, it is converted to a free advert.

If you would like a paid listing, please email me at NorthHantsMum@gmail.com for more details.

 

Small Business Support Groups

I have two Facebook groups that support local businesses:

NHM Publicity for Local Businesses – Support local Businesses!!!!!

This group is open to anyone to join and is a great way to support local businesses. As the pinned post states, please only post your offers once a month, so as not to cause lots of spam in the group.

NHM Mums running Small Businesses

This group is for local Mum’s who run their own businesses to share information and network. I often set up networking events and these are where those events are created and publicised.

Check In on Facebook

There are over 2361 people who are friends of my Louise nhm Smith” profile.

(Don’t worry, I never look at people’s profiles as I don’t have the time or energy. The NHM Community is very welcoming and there are loads of groups to join).

Whenever I click to say that I am “interested” in an event, these events pop up in my friends newsfeeds. If there is ever an event that you would like to pop up in my friends newsfeeds, please just add me to the event.

I also often visit local places and check in to say I’ve been there as it raises the profile of that business.

Other ways to support local Businesses

Are there any other ways that you think NorthHantsMum can support local businesses? Is there anything that is missing?

I’d love to hear your feedback at NorthHantsMum@gmail.com.

As always, thank you for your support and thank you for being part of the NorthHantsMum Community!

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Mum2Mum Markets Hampshire

Thank you for the opportunity to tell everyone about my events!  I’m Linda and I run the Mum2Mum Markets in Basingstoke, Eastleigh and Southampton.

Mum2Mum Markets are community events where parents (and grandparents and friends!) can buy and sell high quality nearly new baby and children’s toys, clothes and equipment.  Our friendly, popular markets are all held indoors and usually see between 200 and 300 shoppers at each event. Our stalls are packed with toys, games, books, clothing, shoes, walkers, buggies, play mats, bedding, travel cots, trikes, ride-on toys, sterilisers, nursery equipment – and more!  Our events are aimed at age 0-6 years and maternity. 

The Basingstoke markets are held at Hatch Warren Community Centre and Queen Mary’s College, the Eastleigh markets at Pavilion on the Park, and the Southampton events at Woodlands Community College.

Our upcoming market dates are as follows: 

To book a stall, simply visit our bookings website at http://www.mum2mummarket.co.uk/book-a-stall.html and select your market.  We supply the tables, and you keep 100% of your takings on the day!  Each stallholder receives our useful Information Pack a couple of weeks before the market, which is packed with information, tips and advice on sorting, displaying and pricing their goodies.  We have a loyal group of repeat sellers at each location and stalls usually sell out well in advance of each market.

If you’re looking to shop at our events, you’ll find our stalls packed with amazing bargains!  A huge range of high quality nearly new baby and children’s toys, clothes and equipment at a fraction of the retail price.  You really can save a fortune! There’s no need to book to come and shop, just come along on the day. Adult entry is £2, children are free and there’s free entry for everyone for the last 30 minutes of each market.  You can also download a 2for1 entry voucher from our website and bring a friend for free (or pay £1 each of course!). 

We also work with local baby and child related businesses, who promote their products and services through our events.  There are a variety of ways to do this, including placing flyers in our goody bags, booking a business stall, or sponsoring our events.  We love working with other local small business, so would love to hear from anyone looking to engage with local parents. 

So whether you fancy selling or buying, we’d really love to see you at one of our markets – come and join us!  

Join our Facebook page for our latest news, event dates, market photos and preview of items for sale! https://www.facebook.com/Mum2mum-Market-Hampshire-166582593693636/

Please email me at linda@mum2mummarket.co.uk with any questions or enquiries – I’d love to hear from you.

Linda x

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Finding Your style when returning to work – By Victoria Kennedy

Hi, I’m Victoria, mum to 2 crazy, lively boys, vintage frock lover, tea drinker and Personal Stylist. I am passionate about empowering women to love being themselves. My style ethos is that ‘you are best at being you’.

So embrace who you are and shout about it for the world to hear! I’m often contacted by women returning to work after having their children. The story is almost always the same, and 99% of the time it boils down to confidence, confidence in ourselves as working women. If you are considering returning to work, read on!

Going back to work after having a baby is a big move, your heart, mind and body are still adjusting to the new ‘normal’ and it can feel very overwhelming and stressful. Usually full of emotional turmoil and a bucket load of ‘mum-guilt’ at the thought of leaving your child.

Whether you took 3 weeks, 3 months or 3 years of maternity leave, deciding what to wear to work after having a baby will be different but yet the same for all of us. You may still be carrying baby weight, you may still be breastfeeding and more than likely your confidence will have dipped.

For me, returning to work after the birth of my first son was so daunting. I was absolutely riddled with guilt as well as feeling totally overwhelmed about my ‘new body’ and how to dress for it. Let’s face it, I’d spent the majority of the last 12 months in my new found ‘mummy uniform’- rotating PJ’s for leggings and oversized sweaters. Marry that with a distinct lack of sleep and time to myself meant makeup and hair styling was no longer on my monthly to do list let alone part of my mornings routine!

When deciding to return to work, first and foremost, before thinking about what to wear: 

  1. Be kind to yourself

 Take some time to process the return to work decision in your own head. You may be feeling guilty about leaving your child, you may be feeling guilty about being excited to return to work. All of these feelings are normal. Do not beat yourself up about how you feel. Talk to your partner, friends, family and allow yourself those feelings.

2. Take up the offer of ‘Return to work days’

Going back into work in an informal way, for a chat & coffee can help it feel less daunting. Remember these days are for you to ‘catch up and refresh yourself’ don’t be pushed into working or being pulled into office politics!

3. Take care of yourself

Try to build a routine into the mornings and evenings on the days leading up to your return to work. This will help you ensure you get enough sleep and eat well- returning to work is tiring! Prepare yourself!

So once you’ve found good childcare, figured out logistics, battled tiredness and getting into the ‘work’ frame of mind, you can start to think about what you will wear on the ‘big day’.  This was such a huge challenge for me as I felt I had lost myself. I was ‘mummy’ and knew that role quite well- I knew the uniform! But I had no idea what ‘working Victoria’ looked like these days. Plus I had no idea what suited my new expanse of tummy!

I knew I wanted to return to work feeling confident about myself. I wanted people to see me as a professional, not as a ‘mummy’- which is strange as I have the utmost respect for mums- the jobs a tough one! But I felt, on my return to work, I would be judged by my appearance, that ‘how together’ I looked was a reflection on my ability to be a working mum.

So with that in mind I went shopping with a close friend, someone who had returned to work previously after having her children, and her advice is something I still use regularly with my clients today!

1. New Clothes

Whilst it seems obvious to say buy new clothes- after all we are all familiar with that ‘shiny new item’ feeling- much like the first day back at school adorned head to toe in new gear! But when I say buy new clothes what I really mean is take a good look at your new post baby body shape and buy new pieces that flatter this new fabulous shape.

If you’re unsure of your body shape- take a look at my facebook page for some tips and guidance! Dressing to flatter your shape can make you look slimmer, younger and feel more confident. There is no need to purchase the entire Next Directory- See my next point!

2. Buy 3 or 4 versatile items

For example, buying a black shift or wrap dress (great if breastfeeding/pumping) can be a great investment as you can wear it in different ways- with a blazer, with a scarf, with heels, with boots, with a bright necklace etc.

A great rule I impose on my clients is ‘never buy an item that doesn’t already go with 2 or 3 items you own’- that way you can wear it in many ways. So when you are choosing some new workwear think carefully about how the pieces can be worn to create multiple outfits.
Other good versatile items are;

  • ‘trophy blazers’- bright/jazzy fabric blazers that can be added to outfits to provide colour or texture.
  • Statement jewellery- another great way of adding colour and changing the look of an outfit.
  • Neutral coloured trousers or skirt- these can then be worn with a variety of tops and shoes to create different looks.

3. Bag & Shoes

You’ve probably got the hang of packing the changing bag with every possibility accounted for. You’re used to lugging around the contents of your house- just in case! But when returning to work the contents of your bag is entirely for you. So as well as having the luxury of carrying just your purse and lippy, you can do so in a lovely new bag! Treating yourself to a gorgeous-but- totally-impractical-for-mummy-duty bag can be a great way to bring your personality back into your style.

It’s a way of reminding yourself that ‘you’ are still ‘you’! This can also be the case with shoes! Although an air of practicality may well be needed, depending on your job, but it can be a great confidence boost to walk into work rocking a killer pair of heels! You’ve still got it girl!

Whatever you choose to wear to return to work, above everything else, it should make you feel most like you. Your style is a reflection of your personality as well as your lifestyle and body shape.

We are naturally going to feel most confident when we are being ourselves. Embrace who you are- an amazing women, who has carried and birthed a precious baby, a baby who loves you unconditionally for being their Mama. Return to work with this love in your heart and let your light shine- You are best at being you!

If you would like more tips and advice on finding your style join my ‘Style File’ group on Facebook- https://www.facebook.com/groups/107764566603327

Alternatively, book a Personal Styling session with me for an in depth analysis of your shape, colours, style and personality- www.givingyouaboost.wixsite.com/hello

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Tinytoes and Stickyfingers – Special offer for NHM Readers!!

Tinytoes and Stickyfingers, Capturing a moment in time forever…

Hi, my name is Sherilyn and I started ‘Tinytoes and Stickyfingers’ nearly 9 years ago, when my second child was born. I create beautiful keepsakes of all your little ones.

I’ve always been a ‘maker’ gaining my degree in Fine Art Sculpture (a long time ago now!) followed by a career in graphic design. When I discovered how to make fingerprint jewellery, it seemed a perfect fit for me and my family, and Tinytoes was born.

The range of products I now produce has grown every year and now includes 3d casting, raised impressions, family and nursery prints as well as the original line of fingerprint/hand and foot/doodle silver jewellery. All personalized to you and your loved ones.

Having been established for so long it is lovely to catch up with mums and dads whose own families have also grown in the last 9 years and to take prints and castings of their new additions, even the furry ones!

For the last three years Tinytoes and Stickyfingers has also been part of the very lovely ‘All Our Own Crafts’ popup shop in Festival Place Basingstoke. Where you can see just a small selection of the range I now produce.

This year the ‘Hook Home and Garden Centre’ are also showing some of the Tinytoes and Stickyfinger range, and they just happen to have some amazing cakes and a fabulous children’s area so well worth a visit.

Everything is handmade, fired and finished by me at my home studio in Basingstoke, giving me the flexibility to offer casting or printing appointments either in the comfort of your home or mine. Or if you prefer, you still have the option to simply use my website www.tinytoesandstickyfingers.co.uk and be sent a kit with full printing instructions.

As a special offer for NHM readers I’m offering a 15% discount on all framed 3D cast bookings made by the end of March 2018. Just mention this offer when you make your appointment.

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Relax, unwind, socialise and harmonise with Thula Mama!

Hi, I’m Rebecca and I run a singing group called Thula Mama (pronounced ‘Tula Mama’) for mothers of bumps and pre-crawling babies, from my home in Bramley. Thula Mama is a national franchise but this is the only group in this area.

As mother to 3-year-old Elliott, I’ve been fully immersed in the world of baby and toddler groups in recent years and I felt there was a gap locally for mums who enjoy singing but would like an alternative to nursery rhymes! In contrast to most musical groups for mothers and babies, the focus of a Thula Mama session is on the mothers and allowing them a chance to relax and unwind and do something for themselves. It offers mums an hour and a half of social time and provides both mothers and babies with the many benefits of soothing singing. Babies love listening to the sound of their mothers’ voices singing gently to them.

I run the group from the comfort of my living room, provide drinks and biscuits and a comfy place to sit while you meet other mums and catch up. We then learn a mix of gentle lullabies and more upbeat songs from around the world with simple but effective harmonies. Singing in this way in a group creates a positive and peaceful atmosphere and has been proven to be great for wellbeing. Absolutely no experience is necessary! All are welcome and all the songs are taken at a gentle pace appropriate to the group.

Sessions are every Wednesday at 10am. For details, please contact me on 07971 798945, email rebecca.cooch@gmail.com or visit www.Facebook.com/ThulaMamaBasingstoke. The first session is free. You can also find out more and listen at www.thulamama.co.uk.

Here is an example of a recent review:

Amanda McKechan, November 28, 2017
“I am so pleased I came across this group – it is something so different from the usual Mother and Baby classes, and it is a rare combination of doing something for your child as well as for yourself. The songs are different, some joyful, some soulful. My baby has loved attending and listening to the group – it is interesting how mesmerised the babies are!

I think it is interesting to find out about the meanings of the lyrics and think about the other mums around the world singing these songs, doing the same jobs we do.

Rebecca is a lovely teacher – it is a relaxed class at her house. I think people may feel put off if they are not the best singer, but that really doesn’t matter, there are different parts and different songs to suit everyone. It certainly is nice to add some more songs to our parenting repertoire other than the usual (Twinkle twinkle etc!). Thanks for a lovely time Rebecca – it has been my favourite activity with my baby this year.”

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