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. Half term has already started for many schools but how do you keep a pre-teen occupied when all they really want to do is sit on YouTube and watch videos of people making slime! (I kid you not).

     5 Ideas For Keeping A Pre-Teen Girl Happy Over Half Term

    So having consulted our resident pre-teen, here are the top things that are on this holiday's to do list.

    1. Sleepover

    Grab 2-3 friends, get some popcorn, snacks and non alcoholic cocktails and it can be a relatively cheap way to entertain a group of girls. Even better if you have Netflix or Now TV and you can let them watch a movie or their favourite box set.

    2. Get active.

    There are so many trampoline parks or climbing walls, that this is a great alternative to sitting in front of a computer and great exercise too. It is a lovely way to bond ..... because who said that climbing walls had to be for the kids.

    3. Go shopping.

    Both of my girls love to shop (neither of them inherited my nose thankfully but they do seem to have developed my love of shopping). My pre-teen daughter is becoming more and more conscious of brand names, such as Converse, Nike and Adidas but I always find it is best to check out sites such as Lovethesales for the best deals. 


    4. Let them lie in

    After relentlessly dragging them out of bed every morning of the school term, there will be nothing that gives you brownie points more than allowing them to lie in till whatever time they want.

    5. Give in to the power of YouTube

    If all else fails, you could buy all the relevant "ingredients", pop on YouTube and make a batch of slime!

    Do you have any other tips? 

  2. I had a job when I was 14,  I worked in a hairdressers every Saturday and it was something that my parents actively encouraged me to do. I loved having my own money to spend how I liked, we never really had pocket money as Mom and Dad tended to buy us things when we needed them so my £10 (no minimum wage back then) was all mine and I loved it! Times change and with so many more legislative requirements on employers, should we still be encouraging our children to work from a young age?

    Should we encourage our children to work from a young age-

    Research reveals that young employees (aged 16-29) among the British workforce are most likely to suffer injuries while on the job. In fact, they are more at risk of an injury and illness than any other age group! 

    A frightening 71% of workers between 16-29 years old claim their work place to be a health hazard, suggesting many businesses are putting the lives of their employees in danger. Almost half of the same age group said that they have had an accident at work and more than one in five ended up in hospital because the injury was so bad. For me, I think the worst that could happen in the salon was getting a bit of shampoo in my eyes or slipping on the floor but I was also very sensible (puts on my halo) and I think that there has to be an element of common sense too. 

    My girls do jobs at home and I am quite sure that they think it is a health hazard (or a reason to get out of doing jobs around the house) but it seems that going to work can damage young workers health, especially as they are not aware of their legal rights.

    I have worked in HR for many years and have seen a number of employees make compensation claims (both legitimately and not so much) but it is useful to see a company such as Hayward Baker launch a free to use interactive injury compensation calculator.


    Do you encourage your children to work? Does it worry you that they are safe in the workplace?

  3. Every week I read the Five Fabulously Frugal Things I've Done linky and it always inspires me to look at my spending habits. My love of shopping is well known but that doesn't mean I can't be savvy with it.

    LLP - Five Frugal Things Ive done this week

    So here are the fabulously frugal things I have managed this week. 

    1. Last weekend was Mothers Day and rather than buy my Mum something generic, I wanted a really personal gift but it was certainly more expensive than a bunch of flowers (not really the ethos of being frugal). So I spoke with my brother and we agreed to share the cost. Mum got a stunning personalised necklace with the names of all her grandchildren on it (that made her cry), we got brownie points for an original gift AND I saved money doing it

    2. On the subject of Mothers Day, I told my husband that I didn't want him sending expensive flowers from the florists. Every year he buys me a gorgeous bunch of flowers made up of favourite flowers but having them from the florist and delivered to me at home means that whilst they are gorgeous, they are not cheap. He popped out the day before Mothers Day and came home with two extra large bouquets of flowers from the supermarket. They came with flower food and were less than half the price of the ones he usually buys and no less beautiful.  

    3. Rather than taking my car to have it valeted, I have taken to vaccuming it out every week (and teaching my girls to take their rubbish with them when they get out of the car)

    4. My eldest daughter is turning into a shopaholic (I have no idea where she gets it from) and she asked if she can have a set amount of pocket money each month. Now usually she gets money if she wants to go out or if she has helped around the house and I am always buying new clothes for her, so we have agreed that she will get a set amount each month and she has to manage that herself. I have said that I won't be subsiding it and I think that overall I am going to be better off and she learns how to manage her money.

    5. I am glad that it is the 1st of April today as I have finished my "shopping" ban for March. My husband always implies that I have a shopping addiction and challenged me to stop shopping for the whole of March (this was only on clothes for myself) and I refrained from buying for the whole month. I daresant admit how much I saved over the month but it has certainly made me think that I should do it again later in the year?

    Have you managed to do anything frugal this week?

  4. The moment I turned 17, I started my driving lessons and worked hard to pass my driving test, although this may be a few more years ago than I care to imagine. When my Nan helped me to buy my first car I had no idea actually how much driving would cost me over the years. 

    5 reasons why your car is a costly luxury

    1. Researchers studied British motorists revealed that over the average lifetime of driving, the typical driver spending nearly seventy thousand pounds on fuel over the course of their lives. 
    2. They will also wrack up a bill of forty thousand pounds on MOTs, servicing and repairs
    3. There is an incredible £9,404 on parking. 
    4. Car supplies like screen wash and air freshener will cost us just under £2,000 
    5. Holiday rental car £180 a year £11,610 over a lifetime

    Am not sure the last one applies to me though as I am not a big fan of driving on holiday but if you can get a cheap car rental, it is certainly worth considering instead of paying for excusions!


     So if my girls want to start driving when they are 17, I suspect I should start saving now!