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.  Win a Baby Annabel Bedroom

    Baby Annabell® is a pretty big deal in our house (according to the 5 year old anyway), so when Talk To Mums asked us to work with them and review the Baby Annabell® Bedroom, we knew that we couldn't resist. Talk To Mums mission is to make all mums a hero to someone they love and this is definitely going to improve our hero points with a certain little lady! If you haven't signed up with Talk To Mums, it is worth taking a look as they want to share with as many mums as possible by offering free products to trial to mums which is a big incentive for signing up plus their are lots of other opportunities distributing samples too

    So, based on this years Christmas list, we already knew that Baby Annabell® from Zapf Creations has a very fancy new bedroom but you can see from the pictures that from the outside it is designed like a real house. When you unfold the house and open both side parts, you get a gorgeous bedroom which includes a wardrobe that makes me envious with all its compartments, hooks and storage bags.  

    Baby Annabel Bedroom

    In addition to all the wardrobe space, the Baby Annabell® Bedroom includes a foldable bed with cover and cushion, mobile, mirror .... what more does a girl need? 

     Baby Annabel Bedroom - Open

    You can unfold the bed, making sure that Baby Annabell® can sleep tightly underneath the cover and when it is closed up, it can be easily transported and stored. I have to admit that the bedroom is larger than I imagined but it is easier to store than I initially thought as everything folds back inside and it closes with a cute velcro heart to the side. Despite being quite sturdy, it is lightweight too, which is ideal for the little ones. 

    Baby Annabel Bedroom - Closing

    The Baby Annabell® lamb design is echoed throughout the bedroom, making it adorably cute and no question of whose room it is. There is no disputing the quality in the product, which is reflected in the £64.99 price tag but seeing how much she has played with it already (and the fact that it doubles up as storage for all the doll clothes and accessories), it is more than just a "toy", it is a great way to keep the 5 year olds bedroom a bit tidier too! 

    Baby Annabel Bedroom - Closed

    The Baby Annabell® bedroom is a modern twist on a traditional dolls house, I love that it comes with everything you would need (aside from its own baby doll) and being suitable for children aged 3 and upwards, I have no doubt that it will be one of the top toys on a lot of childrens Christmas lists this year. However we are VERY excited to be able to share the chance for you to win one for your Baby Annabell® fan this Christmas, all you need to do is enter below.

     a Rafflecopter giveaway


    Terms & Conditions


    The Prize: Baby Annabell® Bedroom RRP £64.99

    Talk to Mums will be responsible for the despatch of the prize.

    By entering this competition, you understand that your details may be retained for future mailings. You can unsubscribe from this mailing list at any time.
    There is no monetary equivalent.
    Little Lilypad Co take no /responsibility for loss or damage in the despatch of prizes
    If the prize is unclaimed within 7 days we reserve the right to redraw the winner.
    End Date 26/11/2016 at 12am


  2. LLP - Desenio 

    Home is where your Wi-Fi connects automatically. This is the saying of the teen generation. 

    If you see our Facebook page, you will know that we are big fans of a "funny saying" or inspirational quote and this is one of the reasons that we have found a love for Desenio, who are a Scandinavian company that has recently launched in the UK. Desenio is a Swedish-based business that was founded in 2010, and who now sell online throughout the Europe, Norway, Australia, Canada and the US but they want the UK audience to know a little more about their products and we are happy to shout about them. 

     Desenio - House Rules

    At first glance, you might be fooled into thinking that they are cheap posters, with prices starting from £2.99 but all the posters are printed on 200g uncoated, FSC-certified and age resistant paper with a med matt finish, so you know that you are getting a quality product. We purposefully don't do many reviews on the Lilypad these days but we genuinely want to share the great designs and quality from this brand. 

    The site is really easy to navigate too and you can browse around the website either by categories including Geometric, Quotes, Animals etc or by Best Sellers.

    Desenio - Manifesto

    My eldest daughter sat adding poster after poster into the online basket and I am quite sure I could have covered two walls with her choices! As a teenager I remember covering my walls with the on trend "Athena" posters of the time (who remembers the man holding the baby?) but these prints are more classic and timeless and hopefully my daughter won't cringe when she remembers her selections in 20 years time.

    Desenio have an eclectic range of posters and once you have decided on the image, you are then able to select a reasonably priced picture frame to compliment your design if you wish. Again the frames start from a reasonably priced £2.99 and are packaged so securely that they arrive in perfect condition. You can take a look at the quality of the packing in an unboxing video from Emma Bradley here.

    Desenio - &

    This poster was my own personal selection (and nothing to do with the 11 year old), because this "&" sign is an image that we used throughout our wedding theme and as it is our anniversary today, it seems that it is only right to end with this poster. 

    So whether you want a token gift or really want to blow the budget with a theme of images, Desenio have something for every taste and purse, so like me today, you can be guaranteed of a shopping experience with a happy ever after.

  3. Pumpkin Week at Hatton Country World

    We make no secret of our love for Hatton World and we enjoyed their Water Wars over the summer so were delighted to be invited back for their annual Pumpkin Week in the run up to Halloween. Pumpkin Week runs from the 22nd to the 30th October 2016 and despite the weather turning colder, the constant stream of activities were enough to keep the chills away (unless you count the ghosts!)


    It was busy when we arrived so we would definitely advise to book in advance, not so much as the fact that you won't get in but more so that you don't have to queue with excited children who just want to go in search of "anything Halloween related".


    As usual, Hatton Adventure World go all out with their decorations and from the minute you step out of the car, you can see the pumpkin field and know that you are in for a good day. 

    The top activities are:

    • Agnes the Witch -  Join in with potion stirring and storytelling by Agnes the Witch - be sure to check the timetable for this though!
    • Haunted House - The thing we liked most about this is that they tailored it to age ranges .... making it a little scarier for the older children!
    • Jaspers Dilemma - We pre-booked our timeslot when we arrived and loved the magic show which is always sprinkled with a little bit of adult humour.
    • Free Pumpkin for every child - you just have to go through the field and find the perfect one.
    • Pumpkin carving


    We always have a range in ages in our party and this is the one thing that Hatton Adventure World is very good at, we managed to pet small animals but then keep the older girls amused (literally) by milking a cow. 


    We managed to squeeze in some of the other activities that we always enjoy at Hatton, such as the small fairground rides and the park but the girls were determined to seek out the best pumpkin and set about deciding how to go about it in a sea of pumpkins.


    Every child gets a pumpkin of their choice ....... be warned, apparently it can take aaaaaaaages to select the perfect one. You are given a green bag in which to carry your pumpkin, although we "may" have needed a replacement due to the sheer size of the pumpkin! We initially thought that the pumpkins had been placed there but we soon realised that we actually had to pick them ..... be careful as they can be a bit spiky!!


    We left our pumpkin selection till the end of the day and I am glad we did, I would not have fancied walking round the rest of the park with the weight of those pumpkins. Apparently I also now need to find a receipe for Pumpkin pie! (help me)


    Hatton Country World is a great family day out at any time of year but at Halloween it is really special. There is nothing better than getting out in a real pumpkin patch to choose your pumpkin. It is a day full of fun and fresh air. 


    As I said before, it really is better to book in advance as you not only get quicker entry but a better discount too. 


    Book 7 days in advance - 25% discount / Book 4 days  in advance - 17.5% discount / Book 1 day in advance - 7.5% discount


    Walk up tickets are available to purchase on the day from the admission kiosk at £15.95

    It is definitely a more fun way to get a pumpkin than popping to the supermarket. 

  4. We have all had that moment when you look at the calendar and realise that it is somehow the end of the Autumn term – and it’s this week!  Panic sets in as you contemplate extra meals, extra activities and what to do with them when it rains, which it is sure to do.  But there’s no need to panic because there are some great ways to survive half term and here’s a few to get you started.

    LLP - The Mums Survival Guide to Half Term

    Plan ahead even if its last minute.

    Just because we are in the half term week, doesn’t mean you have to abandon planning and wing it for the week.  Take a little time after the kids have gone to bed to do some research and get an idea about things to do for the week.

    Don’t forget to have back up plans to bring into use if something unexpected crops up.  You might want to go for a walk with the kids and the dogs to the local park and let them run off some steam – but what if it rains all week?  Have a list of indoor and outdoor activities and places to go to cover all eventualities.

    Local events

    Half term is a magnet for children-related events to take place and a quick search of your local area is bound to reveal plenty, especially around Halloween.  There are also lots of free ideas if you are working to a budget – museums with free entry that are having a half-term event are a classic example.  Many of the big museums around the country offer free entry for the whole family or for the kids so for the price of a single adult, you could keep them occupied all day.

    Some of the national cinema chains often have promotions on children’s films for half term and often have morning sessions where costs are much lower than normal.

    Jet off somewhere and escape the cold. 

    The Friday when school breaks up is usually known as the the "great getaway" with many families choosing to escape the wet and windy weather of Great Britain and indulge in some warmer climates but for the children, it has to work too. According to, surviving a family holiday has more to do with social media than socialising for this generation.

    Today’s teens (12-15 year olds), put the impetus on social media and keeping in touch with friends at home while away. Specifically:

     * The majority (89%) of 12-15 year olds prioritised a strong Wi-Fi connection as essential

    * Having the chance to take cool photos for social media was important for nearly half (44%)

    * Staying near a pool or a beach and enjoying lots of activities were also ranked in the top five important factors

    * Conversely only a quarter (25%) of 12-15 year olds think it’s important to make friends with other children on holiday

    By contrast, 5-11 year olds are much more sociable and long for holidays by a cool pool or beach:

     * Staying near a pool/cool water slides (73%) or beach (58%) are deemed the two top priorities for children aged 5-11, followed by activities they can’t do at home (54%)

    * Playing with other children is important to nearly half (42%), while over a third would like to have all the ice cream they can eat on holiday (34%) and food that isn’t usually allowed at home (32%)

    Let them stay up late

    Staying up late is a big treat in our house, so escaping the daily routine of the school run means that we don't have to be too regimented with half term bedtimes. If you are away over the half term (or even if you are not), letting the children stay up past bedtime "might" mean that you get a chance of a lie in too.

    Things to do at home

    If you are not able to jet off to sunnier climates, remember that you don’t need to spend the entire week racing madly from one event to another – you can simply have days in the house.  Take time to plot out something to do during those days so the inevitable “I’m bored” doesn’t surface.

    Baking is a great activity for parents and kids to do together and you don’t need to be Mary Berry to rustle up some little cakes.  Supermarkets have packets of ready to go cupcakes and other sweet treats that you and the kids can create that have almost guaranteed results.  Or you can be a little more adventurous and grab a recipe from Pinterest – don’t forget that it doesn’t have to be baking.  You and the kids could make a meal for whoever is at work or invite some friends around for a dinner party – this might appeal to older kids.

    Finally .....

    Don’t forget that you don’t have to fill every minute of half term with activities and places to go.  Let the kids have some time to simply play while you relax.  That way, you are more likely to survive half term and even enjoy the holiday!