Blog : Little Lilypad Co

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The Little Lilypad is a lifestyle blog mostly written by a mum to two beautiful, cheeky and entertaining daughters. It is sometimes written by the Man on the Pad or our baby bloggers and occasionally we accept guest posts. There is frequently talk of shoes and clothing (we love fashion and savvy shopping), chocolate (who doesn't love chocolate) education and swimming (we love this too). It is hopefully helpful, sometimes funny and always honest.

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  1. As I have worn glasses for as long as I can remember, so when Firmoo contacted me to ask if I’d review a pair of their glasses, I have to admit that I jumped at the chance. I had recently bought a pair of glasses that were not my usual style and I have felt uncomfortable in them ever since. I have blogged about my bad eyesight before (and the awful glasses I have worn over the years), so I am always excited to get new glasses especially when they are stuck on the front of my face pretty much 24/7.

    The website automatically defaults to US Dollars and when you convert to GBP I have to admit my surprise to see glasses at £25.00. I have spent hundreds of pounds on my glasses and lenses over the years, so was intrigued to see how the quality would compare. The website has daily recommendations on frames but the selection process is really easy to navigate with well-thought out search filters which allow you to narrow your choices based on frame type, material, color, shape, size, and price. 

    The one thing to remember is that if you are ordering prescription glasses, you do need an up to date prescription and another word of advice is to ensure that you keep your prescription in a safe place. You know, the kind of safe place that you can remember where it is. This *obviously* did not happen to me. You will also need to know your PD, your PD stands for Pupillary Distance, which is the distance between your pupils in millimeters, Your PD is very important for accurately fitting your lenses to achieve vision acuity. Unfortunately not all optometrists write this on your prescription (as I suspect they want you to purchase in store, rather than buy online) but the good news is that you can actually measure this yourself.

    Stand in front of a mirror, place a millimeter ruler on the bridge of your nose (a childs one will do, or a tape measure). Keep the rule "0" measurement is exactly in line with the center of your left pupil. Oh and make sure that you hold the ruler straight (and remember that you should have done your eyebrows if you are going to take a close up photo)

    Firmoo Pupilary Distance

    I chose some frames that I knew would suit my face shape and simply entered my prescription and my pupilary distance measurement and checked out. There are lots of lens options, which increase the price (as you would imagine) but the checkout process is quick and simple.

    So I waited and was pleasantly surprised to find the glasses arrive within 7 days. (That is quicker than my local opticians!)

    Firmoo Glasses Case

    The glasses come in a stylish case, with lens cloth and I couldn't wait to open them. 

    Firmoo Glasses on Desk

    The glasses felt really lightweight, especially in comparison to some frames I have had but equally for the price of the frames, I wasn't expecting them to be extra sturdy. I have been wearing them for a week now and have struggled to find anything I don't like about them.

    For the benefit of a balanced review, I would say:

    The Pros:

    • Good online selection
    • It really didn’t take long to find a pair that I thought would be suitable and the ordering process was really easy.
    • Option to make your lenses thinner (which is good when you could be mistaken for wearing milk bottles like me)
    • Lightweight
    • Fast Delivery

    The Cons:

    • You may need to go into an opticians to get them altered or adjusted slightly. (I didn't but can see how some people should be aware of this)
    • Taking your own measurements for pupilary distance isn't the easiest thing to do so having someone to help you might be better than using a mirror like I did.

    Firmoo Over a Glass of WIne

    For me, I am delighted with these new frames, I am really pleased with how they look and feel on my face (they make me look intelligent over a glass of wine which is always a bonus) and when my Mum asked me to go with her to buy some new glasses, I told her that she needs to check out the selection on Firmoo first. So if I am prepared to recommend them to my Mum, I am more than happy to recommend them to you!

     

     

     

  2. The KS2 SATs are coming up, and for 10 and 11 year olds it can be quite a stressful time! It’s a worry amongst parents and guardians at the moment. My Facebook feed is currently filled with people talking about the ‘Let Our Kids Be Kids’ campaign that is urging parents to boycott the upcoming SATs for primary school children in Year 2 with over 30,000 signatures on a petition.

    For the children preparing to take their KS2 SATs exams, they’re also facing the big change from junior school to secondary school. This means a whole new environment, and perhaps saying goodbye to close friends which is understandably difficult. During this time of emotional upheaval (although hopefully the prospect of a fun summer holiday break will help!) the are constantly and subconsciously reminded that they must also concentrate on their tests. Whilst the exams can be seen as stressful they are apparently designed to be beneficial in preparing them for future testing. (Who knew?!)

    I know that there are many that are completely against this testing but they are happening regardless of our parental objections, so I have made a plan to prepare my daughter the best way I can, so here are a few ways to help prepare your children for the KS2 SATs, making sure they remain happy, relaxed and confident.

    Preparing your child for KS2 SATs

    Talk to your child about them

    Keep your tone cheery and upbeat, after all the Year Six SATs aren’t the be all and end all of your child’s life! Encourage them to do their best, but let them know that they are nothing to worry about. Try to keep life flowing along as normal, so not to make the SATs seem like a scary, looming monster.

    Don’t put too much pressure on extra revision

    The school will be preparing your child for the tests, but they may have extra work or be invited to attend extra preparation sessions. Whilst these can be a good idea, try not to push them too much. Perhaps create fun games that help your children learn in order to make it seem less like ‘extra work’.

    Speak to the teacher

    If you want to know exactly what work your children are undertaking during school time to prepare for the SATs, just ask! This way you can have a clear understanding of what your child is currently going through, which can help you plan how best to support them.

    Plan something fun as a reward

    Giving your child something to look forward to after their exams can help them to stay motivated and positive. It also reinforces the idea that they only need to try their best, and they will be rewarded just for their effort. Maybe a trip out with friends to the cinema or even something as simple as a takeaway for dinner!

    Remember that they can be a good thing

    The SATs are a great way to show your children that hard work can pay off. Some children can even enjoy taking the tests! As long as your kids don’t feel an overwhelming amount of pressure from home or their school, they can be a positive experience.

     

    This year, our children are being measured against higher standards and despite parents objections and petitioning, they will still go ahead. It is amusing that in the the Governments reply to a teachers' petition about exams they got their grammar wrong! So let's be really honest, if they find it difficult to follow their own guidelines what chance do the pupils who are supposed to be learning them have?

  3. Fathers Day is looming and it is a great time to celebrate the men in our lives but choosing a quality Fathers Day gift in our busy lives isn't always easy (even if the card shops have been pushing the celebration since Easter) Scholars believe that the origin of Father's Day is not a recent commercial phenomenon, as many believe it to be. They claim that the tradition of Father's Day can be traced in the ruins of Babylon. What is interesting is that they have recorded that a young boy called Elmesu carved a Father's Day message on a card made out of clay nearly 4,000 years ago.

    Father's Day is held on the third Sunday of June in the United Kingdom. In 2016 the UK will celebrate Father's Day on Sunday, June 19th

     What to buy Dad for Fathers Day

    Have I still got time to buy a gift?

    That depends. If you're reading this before Saturday 18 June, absolutely. If you’re looking for the perfect Father’s Day gift but having a hard time thinking of what to get that special man in your life, there are so many options and ideas online that sometimes it is easy to forget classic stores that have been right under your nose all along. Everyone overlooks chain stores because they’re in search of that special item with an almost impossibly unique look. But sometimes, even though we want that incredibly different item, it doesn’t hurt to go with an old faithful that you know won’t disappoint.

    If you are searching the perfect Father’s Day gift that won’t break the bank, but remains high quality, and is painless and fast to purchase, you should definitely check out some of the great items on sale at Gap. There is everything you could possibly want to buy here, from button up shirts and polished shoes, to casual wear and flip flops (or man flops as my husband insists on calling them). As you know, we love online shopping (I may have mentioned that once or twice), so being able to order online means that you don't even have to leave your sofa ..... or drag the man in your life around the shops. 

    Does it have to be expensive? 

    With ANY gift, it is ALWAYS the thought that counts but being savvy with your purchases is definitely encouraged in this house. It is worth checking out discount services like Groupon’s Discount Codes. Using these codes, you can find anything your special man would love. Use your inside knowledge of that great father figure to buy him the perfect gift- whether it is the perfect pair of shorts, or that tie that is ideal for work.

    Couldn't I just make him something instead? 

    Indeed you could. Although unless you are a creative genius, this really only works when you are a small child! 

    Be Present. 

    I am terrible for always trying to search for the perfect gift but in the end being present is as important as giving a present. It is easy to forget that Dad's often feel neglected, whenever I ring my parents I always try to remember to have a chat with my Dad before asking for Mom. This Father’s Day doesn’t have to be overly complex- go easy on yourself while still pleasing your dad.

    And if you really do forget to get to buy a gift, you can say that you are celebrating it on the Austrailian Fathers Day, as unlike in the UK and several other countries where Father's Day is celebrated on the Third Sunday of June, Fathers Day in Australia is celebrated on the first Sunday of September ... so you have a little extra time to prepare ;-)

  4. We are big breastfeeding advocates but let's be honest, we all just advocate making sure our babies are happy, healthy and well fed regardless of who is feeding them (bottles are always nice bonding time for Dad's too), so our baby blogger has been putting the Tommee Tippee Complete Starter Kit through its paces for the past 6 months. We did an unboxing video on Youtube a little while ago, so you can see everything that is in the kit. Have a little look below;

     

    After 6 months of intensive use,  our baby blogger wanted to share her honest thoughts and opinions on the kit, so I shall therefore hand you over to Lynette .....

    I had always intended to bottle feed my daughter. I did with my son, and always felt quite confident that I would with my daughter.  It was important for me to choose a good steriliser, as I knew that it would be used a great deal. Possibly up to 4/5 times a day. I had an Avent one with my son, but after a few months it wasn't performing as well as it was previously. This may have been through over use as my son fed a lot. 

    We decided upon the Tommee Tippee starter kit steriliser. Not only did it come with the steriliser, it also came with a variety amount of sized bottles and other items that really did give us everything we needed to get "started". The set includes:

    • Electric Steam Steriliser
    • Travel Steriliser
    • Electric Bottle and Food Warmer
    • 3 x 150ml Closer to Nature Easi-Vent Bottles with Slow Flow Teats
    • 5 x 260ml Closer to Nature Easi-Vent Bottles with Slow Flow Teats
    • 2 x Medium Flow Teats – 3-6m
    • 2 x Fast Flow Teats – 6m+
    • 4 x Milk Storage Lids
    • 6 x Milk Powder Dispensers – 0m+
    • 2 x Insulated Bottle Bags
    • 1 x Bottle and Teat Brush

    On first inspection the steriliser was nice and big, with room to fit 6 bottles. Plus extra space to fit the lids and dummies should need be. The design, although large on first appearance, is oval shaped and slim fitting on a work surface. I chose the white design, however the black design was lovely. 

    I found the steriliser is easy to use. It is clearly evident where the bottles, teats and kids need to go. There is ample room around the tears and lids for dummies. 

    As a result of  my daughter having to spend time in SCBU, I also had to use the steriliser to sterilise my breast pump.  There was lots of room here to fit all of the attachments from the pump, as well as any containers for storing milk. 

    The time for the steriliser to complete a cycle is about 15 minutes, a little longer my previous steriliser, however, the bottles come out feeling fresh and clean, although very hot, so do be careful.

    My only down point to the steriliser is that sometimes when it is put on, it will switch itself off after a couple of minutes. I have still not discovered why? I thought this may be a fault with just mine, however friends of mine who have the same one have also had the same problem.So, you need to check once you have put it on after about 5 minutes. That it is still running, otherwise you may come to making up a feed and the bottles have not been sterilised.  

    Without gushing too much over a practical piece of equipment, in my honest opinion it is the best one I have tried, it is stylish and doesn't look out of place in my kitchen. I loved all the accessories that came with it. We are off on holiday in a few weeks and I will be taking the travel steriliser with me. The bottles, even after 6 months are still in excellent condition and look as good as new. The only thing that have been changed are the teats, and that is due to the need for faster flowing ones and not as a result of wear and tear.

    If you are looking for a steriliser that is stylish and dependable then this is the one for you, it is available from all major retailers for around £99.99, although it is worth shopping around for the best deals. The health advice is that you can stop sterilising after 6 months but I intend to carry on using mine for the foreseeable future. If you are looking for more Tommee Tippee videos, take a little look at our Perfect Prep video that we did a few years ago.