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Educational Play with Schleich I'm a big fan of learning through play. Unforced educational play. I'm not a teacher and I don't want to be. I want my children to naturally learn whilst they are having fun. When I was contacted recently...

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Say Eh-Oh to the new Teletubbies toys! There back!! Teletubbies made a joyous return to CBeebies last year, and this year marks the launch of the new range of toys. As you know I was sent a box just before Christmas, and today I can finally...

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Travel: Ox Pasture Hall Hotel, Scarborough Last weekend Nana and I took a rather lengthy journey north for a night away at the Ox Pasture Hall Hotel in Scarborough, with Little Dude in tow. The Ox Pasture Hall Hotel is a luxurious country hotel...

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A Place To Enjoy My Garden I love my garden. I love the fact that I have a garden, especially with the recent gorgeous weather we've been having. Whilst I have a pretty compact garden, there's a lot going on out there. Plants, fruit...

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Cuddles With Ben Cohen Some days I have a really difficult job. Days like this for example. *Ahem* That rather nice young man is former rugby player Ben Cohen. Ben is a bit of an expert when it comes to cuddles. He has...

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Moving To A “Big Boy Bed”

Posted by SussexMummy | Posted in Information, Product Reviews | Posted on 12-10-2012

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If you follow me on Twitter (@SussexMummy) you’ll know that last Friday we took the sides of Little Man’s cot bed. We were a little nervous about doing this in case he woke up at 2am and came running down the hall to play with Daddy, or got out of bed at 6am and sobbed as he watched Daddy go to work. There was also the chance that he’d spend the entire night dropping out of bed and nobody would get any sleep.

Little Man went down at 7.30pm as usual, but spent the first 30 minutes sobbing. The world must look a lot different now he’s closer to the ground and there are no side panels on his cot. We don’t think there was anything more wrong with him than a bit of nervousness at his new outlook. There was also the addition of a Gro Clock to his bedroom which was illuminated and he wanted to cuddle it, and didn’t understand that it wasn’t a toy. By 8pm all was silent and he’d finally gone to sleep.

At 9pm we heard an almighty “THUD” followed by a bit of a whimper so I went upstairs to find him curled up on the floor sleeping. He’d obviously rolled too far and dropped off the side of the bed. We had a Lindam Bed Rail to fit to the side of the bed but unfortunately we hadn’t read the instructions before getting it or we would have found it was too big for out cot – the mattress needed to be 76cm or more wide and ours is only 70cm! This therefore wasn’t fitted so dropping out was inevitable. Unfortunately Little Man landed head first on his music box which used to hang from the sides of the cot and was now led on the floor beside him, but he didn’t seem all that bothered and was back asleep.  I lifted him back onto his bed and he stirred briefly but mostly to check the whereabouts of his beloved Teddy.

Remarkably that was it for the entire night. No more thuds, no wandering around, no wanting to play at 3am. In fact not only did he sleep through he also slept longer. Little Man usually gets up at 7am, give or take 15 minutes. On Saturday he got up at 7.45am.

Nap time on Saturday went just as well – he was down for his usual 2 hours without falling out.

Every bed time since has been amazing. He’s gone down at 7.30pm with no sobbing or whimpering, and not been up before 8am since. He hasn’t fallen out again, and every day time nap has been just as easy. I’m sure this remarkableness won’t last, but I’m enjoying it for now.

Before taking the sides off his cot we arranged for 3 products to arrive which we felt would help this transition.

Firstly the Gro Clock. This is a genius piece of equipment. You set what time you want your child to get up at and when you put them to bed you change the face of the clock from a sun to a star. When the time reaches what you class as a good wake up time – not 5.30am then! – the star changes back to a sun. This tells children that they are allowed to get up. If the star is still visible they have to stay in bed. Whilst we haven’t explained this to Little Man because he’s always been great at getting up at a reasonable hour, he does love the clock. We go through the motions of saying “Night Night” to the sun when he goes to bed and “Hello” to the star. He gives it a little wave before settling down to sleep. We set the wake up time for 7am but as yet he’s sleeping well past that. Should his wake up get too early at any point we have the clock as a great back up to explain that its not time to get up yet, and there is also an accompanying book you can read to your child each night if they are reluctant to go to bed.

Secondly we got a Lindam Bed Rail. As I said before we didn’t read the instructions and sizing correctly so this hasn’t fitted on the bed, but the concept is great, and I am hoping to pass it on to a friend for her to test out for me, so there will be more on this soon I hope. I love how it works and easy fold down mechanism, its just a shame that on this occasion my reading of important details went a little amiss. If my friend can’t use it we may well keep it to use when we go on holiday or to visit relations – it will fit a single bed perfectly.

Finally we got a Night Light from Brother Max. We got one of these to plug in on the landing upstairs so that if Little Man did get out of bed during the night and go wandering he’d be able to see. We have a gate across the top of the stairs so he’s safe, and we close the bathroom and office doors so he’d only be able to go into our bedroom – lucky us! – but there are a few things he could walk into in the dark so this night light was a great help. The Night Light plugs straight into a power socket but the light only glows when its dark. There is a sensor on the bottom which detects light, and as soon as you put the landing light on or open the doors and let the daylight through, it turns off. My favourite feature of this night light is that its dual purpose. When you plug it in to an available socket you don’t lose the use of that socket as the night light comes with one. It also has a socket cover so its safe from prodding fingers. It also has a low power consumption so you won’t see your bills rocket, and the light part stays cool to the touch in case little hands make a grab for it.

One week on and we are still enjoying Little Man sleeping till at least 8am and not getting out of bed and wandering about. I’m confident this won’t last – I’m not going to be THAT lucky am I? – but we will enjoy it whilst it does. We are also happy in the knowledge that we have the tools available to get back to this stage should things go awry.

Gro Clocks are available direct from Gro on their website.
More information about the Bed Rails from Lindam can be found here.
Dual Purpose Night Lights from Brother Max can be bought from these stockists.

 

John Lewis Opens First Store In Sussex

Posted by SussexMummy | Posted in Home & Lifestyle, Product Launch | Posted on 04-04-2012

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Retail giant John Lewis is opening its first ever store in Sussex on Thursday with a “John Lewis At Home” store on the Portfield Way Retail Park, just outside Chichester. I was lucky enough to get a sneak preview on Tuesday and take a tour around the new store with branch manager Claire.


Boasting 40,000 square feet of selling space over two floors this new store has a wide range of products you’d commonly find within their bigger shops. There is a large selection of home décor and furnishing, as well as an extensive kitchen and lighting section.

Downstairs you will find the Click & Collect Service which makes shopping even easier – you just order the item and collect it from store the next day, and the only selection of Olympic Merchandising outside of a London branch. Perfect if you want to grab yourself a piece of memorabilia for this summers event without having to fight your way into the capital.

Jubilee fever has also struck with a number of Union Jack emblazoned products throughout the store from cushions to deck chairs and food gifts – I can highly recommend the Emma Bridgewater Biscuit Barrel!

Upstairs you will find a comprehensive electrical and gadgetry department which includes the brand new iPad and a number of TV’s – ideal distraction for the men! You will also find a small but well stocked baby section to pick up a few nursery essentials for your little ones, including cots, toys and a bedding.

The familiar John Lewis cafe is also upstairs where they’ll be selling a range of drinks, snacks and light lunches, as well as children’s lunch boxes. A supply of high chairs is ready and waiting! Customer toilets can also be found nearby along with spacious baby changing facilities, and a feeding room – something which is rare even on the high street!

One of my favourite “trends” on offer in John Lewis At Home is the ‘Playnation’ range. Here is the foyer of the new store, decked out in the range.


Can you believe that colourful book display is actually wallpaper? I love it and definitely want some for our home office!!

The ‘Playnation’ range is beautifully bright and encompasses a huge selection of products from table ware to garden items, home decor to office organisation. The mix of wood and colour looks brilliant and I can imagine several pieces finding a place in my home soon. Here are a few of my personal favourites:

This Tiffin Box would be great on family picnics this summer with four handy compartments for your lunch time favourites.

Office storage needn’t be dull with this brightly coloured unit featuring six large deep drawers.

Every cook and baker needs a good set of measuring spoons and I love this set of four – colourful additions to any kitchen.


Summer trips to the beach or just sitting in the garden will be stylish and comfortable for your little ones in this traditional deck chair.

John Lewis At Home opens on Thursday April 5th and with the extended Easter weekend it’s sure to be a busy one – I suggest you start queuing now!!