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 very entertaining) daughters. It is sometimes written by the Man on the Pad or my gorgeous sister in law as part of our baby blog 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) and baby swimming (we love this too). It is hopefully helpful, sometimes funny and always honest.

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  1. Anyone who has had the pleasure of "owning" a pre-teen girl will understand the difficulty of trying to juggle their changing shape, their frequent change in taste, attitude and fashion and certainly their change of mind. So with the warmer weather on the horizon, we were delighted to get the chance to look at some of the new summer range from Vertbaudet.

    In my mind, a denim jacket is a wardrobe staple whatever your age (unless you wear denim on denim and then I may have to question our friendship). The tween is suddenly a fan of a scarf or a snood with an outfit and with the addition of the shorts, this makes a winning combination in her eyes.

    I have always shopped with Vertbaudet, ever since she was a little girl is it great to see how the brand is evolving with current fashions but retaining the original quality and unique-ness that the brand has always had. 

    Tween Summer Fashion from Vertbaudet

    The jacket (£20), Scarf (£9) and Shorts (currently on offer at £8.10), make a whole outfit for just under £40, (I wish I could put an outfit together for myself for this amount) which means that it is not only on trend but affordable too, until she announces she can't decide between Havianna flip flops or Vans trainers!! Nevertheless, I have always found that Vertbaudet clothing comes up a little small so it maybe worth plumping for the next size up if you want it to last all summer.

    I loved that the shorts have an adjustable waistband inside with elastic and buttons (I can never understand why clothes designers don't do this in adults clothing, as my husband would love an adjustable waistband after a large meal!). This means that you "could" buy a slightly bigger size and the adjustable waist would make them last longer! White shorts are great key piece for a pre-teen ..... unless of course your little sister happens to have post-Easter chocolate covered hands. So as a mum, I adore that it is all machine washable at 40 degrees and as a long term customer, I know that they retain the colour, shape and design after countless washes. 

    I would love to show you images of her in the outfit but unless she is pulling a pouting selfie for her instagram feed, she simply isn't interested in posing for photos for her mums blog post (again the perils of having a tween). I will try and catch her when she isn't looking ..... and in the meantime, I am linking up with this weeks Wednesday's Wardrobe to share the great choices available on Vertbaudet this summer. 


  2. Dear Blog,

    Life has been a little bit busy of late and you have been a little neglected. I apologise.

    You see, I have these two adorably energetic daughters who seem determined to do every activity going at the present time!

    Our weekends are no longer our own. Gymnastics takes over our Saturdays (although very proud of my girls this weekend in their display - have a look at my Instagram feed for indulgent proud mum moments) and suddenly swimming has taken over our Sundays but somehow this weekend we managed to get outside and enjoy the lovely weather.

    I stopped working for a few hours (yes this is a true fact) and we went for a stroll .....

    Country Kids 190415 1

    A certain small person insisted on bringing her "babies" (that had been in her doctors surgery earlier that day) for a walk too!

    Country Kids 190415 2

    Then today we have been out sorting through the logs on the farm (with a toddler dressed like a cow - obviously).

    Country Kids 190415 5

    Although she was insistent that the shavings were porridge oats, not wood shavings!

    CountryKids 1904215 6

    We were trying to work out how old this tree was ....... can you tell?

    Country Kids 190415 4

    So you see my dear little blog, while I have neglected you, we have been busy building strong, athletic children and indulging their passions and curiosity. I know I apologised earlier for my absence but if the truth be told, I am not really sorry, I am just happy to be having time with my children.

    Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

  3. Last year we didn't have a big family holiday (I am obviously excluding my hen weekend and mini moon as the children didn't come on those), so we are all getting excited about booking holidays for this year. We have a summer holiday booked, the girls are already talking about the plane and swimming pool whereas I am just grateful that someone else is cooking and cleaning for a week, but we have booked a short break to Hoburne in the Cotswolds too, which means the inevitable family road trip will ensue.

    Here are my top tips for a safe, entertaining and stress free family road trip!


    The Sat Nav is my friend but it is also a good plan to have a vague idea of where you are actually going just in case the Sat Nav decides to go into meltdown and send you the wrong way down the motorway as *may* have happened in the past. *disclaimer : I am quite sure this was the Sat Nav's fault and not my own.


    I love the driving and taking in the scenery, I can also sing a whole catalogue of songs, play every car game known to man and whilst I am quite sure I whined, "Are we there yet?" often enough to drive my parents nuts, I refuse to answer that question from the girls until we are 10 minutes away from our destination. Car games are great fun for getting everyone into the holiday spirit, unless of course you have an extremely competitive husband who you may have to disqualify from playing to give everyone else a chance of winning.


    Make sure your vehicle is reliable and ready to go, paying particular attention to the tyres, coolant and engine oil. (not forgetting the fuel). I am a little guilt of ignoring the warning signals on my dashboard so making sure you know what all the lights mean is a bonus. You can check your knowledge here.


    It is a family road trip, not a race and trying to drive the length of the country is just going to tire kids and adults alike. It is recommended that you spend a maximum of five to six hours on the road, plus multiple breaks (although if it takes me that long to get to the Cotswolds I may be a little concerned).


    If your schedule permits—and your child is known to sleep in the car—consider trying to travel at nap time or early evening. Not only will it make the drive a little quieter for you, it will also cut the chances your child will get car sick or experience a tiredness induced meltdown. Bring along their favourite toy or blanket and a child-friendly travel pillow to make the car seat more suitable for sleep too.


    I have to say that snacks are probably the number one way to keep our kids (and my husband) happy on a family road trip. So, pack a coolbag full of snacks. Include a mix of healthy choices, like raisins, carrot sticks and grapes, as well as treats, like a few biscuits and a bit of chocolate. (this is where I advocate leather seats in the car). Don’t forget bottles of water too (anything else is far too sticky if it spills).


    This can be just as much a challenge with the tween as with the toddler. The tween is happy on her tablet, whereas the little one gets car sick, so we are big fans of the portable DVD players ..... especially those that can play two different films as the tween isn't too keen on Frozen on repeat. (Individual headphones are a GREAT idea at this point also).


    Keep an emergency kit easily accessible in the boot, to include a torch and extra batteries, jump leads, leather gloves, roadside flares or reflective warning triangles, duct tape, a roll of paper towels, a first aid kit, sunscreen and the ever so versatile baby wipes.


    When you are on a road trip and someone inevitably needs a bathroom break, keep a lookout for a budget chain hotel that are often located on the motorways. They tend to have toilets in the lobby area and, in my experience, they are usually much cleaner than those in service stations.

    10. HAVE FUN

    My mum always said if you fail to prepare, prepare to fail and with all this preparation nothing can surely go wrong? But let's be honest, things happen, there are traffic jams and diversions that seem intent on ruining our journeys but at the end of the day, what is a road trip without a little detour??

    Now go and enjoy .....

     Family Road Trip



  4. I have to admit something. I am not a natural outdoorsy kind of person. There I said it!

    BUT .... I do love going to Hatton Adventure World with the children and that is a whole heap of outdoors for me, so when we were invited to see what was new for their Easter Eggstravaganza, I knew that is what we would be doing this half term.

    Easter 2015 sees the launch of a new feature at Hatton Adventure World, their Outdoor Laser Combat.  It is suitable for over 8's only (and the grown ups too) and it is great to see that there is something for older children now as I do worry about the tween getting bored. There is all the usual Easter fun for the whole family, from Easter Bunny Hunts to the Easter Garden where children can search for eggs to exchange for chocolate treats.

    My girls insist on going to see the animals before we do anything else and we had to feed the greedy goats first.

    Hatton - Feeding the goats

    Then check out how much the pigs had grown since our last visit.

    Hatton - piglets

    Not forgetting checking the baby chicks.

    Hatton - baby chicks

    Then with the weather turning a bit chilly, the girls decided it was time to warm up on the bouncy castle.

    Hatton - bouncy castle

    There is a full programme on over Easter including the new Tractor Safari, the Code Crackers Challenge (which was great fun) and the usual favourite of panning for gold and pony rides.

    Hatton - pony rides

    The tween wanted to go on the Laser Combat (so did my husband) but the temperature had dropped significantly by this point and the rain started to fall, so we all wanted a bit of shelter, unfortunately Laser Combat wasn't it. The tween just about managed to get on the tube slide at the entrance but that was as far as we got. The layout of the Laser Combat looks brilliant and really well organised and the tween was gutted to miss out, although in her eyes it is just another reason to go back!

    Hatton - Laser Combat slide

     All the Easter activities are on until the 12th April, so there is still time to go and enjoy. The weather forecast is better for next week too!

    Hatton - Easter Eggstravaganza


    Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall