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 by one of our baby bloggers. Occasionally we accept guest posts too. 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. “And the people stayed home. And read books, and listened, and rested, and exercised, and made art, and played games, and learned new ways of being, and were still.” 

    This line from the recent poem by Kitty O’meara can have a profound impact, and encourages us to make the best out of a bad situation. Let’s be honest, we all neglect family time in the daily hustle bustle of our lives. If anything, we can use the lockdown to our advantage by revitalizing it. What better way to do it than with a family ritual? Here’s 6 ideas to get you started:

    Family Dinner

    Smartphones, despite being supposed to keep us in touch with everyone, are taking us apart from the person right next to us. The importance of a family dinner sans cell phones, TV and any electronic device cannot be underestimated. Everyone can talk about their day, the important and not-so-important stuff. Certain people go as far as to claim that Family dinners have a therapeutic effect as you can reflect, observe and talk about everything that happened.

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    Memory Jars

    Memory Jars serve as a ritual that turns the nature of our abstract memories into something a bit more concrete. Memory Jars involve writing down memorable things that happened throughout the year on cards and putting them in a jar. This can also lead to another family ritual which could involve something along the lines of opening all of them on Christmas and voting the most funny one, the most exciting one, the best trip of the year... you get the gist.

    Yearly Family Photo + Footprint Keepsakes

    Why keep a proper family photo restricted to a time that was ages ago? Having one every year adds a super sweet memory, and can be started right away! You can also mix it up with a footprint keepsake to make it more interesting!

    Commitment Jar

    Following the concept of a swear jar, a commitment jar is made for an aspect of your family that all of you would want to change. Maybe you’d like yelling to stop, or maybe you’d want to stop people from checking phones during dinners. Whatever it is, a commitment jar can have people add a certain amount of money to the jar as a custom which can then be given to charity.

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    The Family TV Show

    A good take on everyone being glued to watching TV shows can be watching a TV show that everyone likes, together. Discussing the same TV show during dinner can also be productive as you get to take a look at the different perspectives about the same show, and this also teaches the kids on being media critics.

    Game Night

    Lastly, the best family rituals are sometimes the ones that have been tried and tested by everyone. Game nights are fun, allows you to bond with your kid much better and makes for some interesting Instagram stories!

  2. Covid-19 has turned the world upside down. Everybody’s lives have been affected in some way or other, with many of us now having to spend our days cooped up indoors. The cabin fever can be hard to fight off, but getting into a good game can definitely help you out with that battle. If you’re a keen gamer, (like my girls) you’re probably already rejoicing at the seemingly endless amounts of time you now have to play your favourite games. And if you’re not a keen gamer, that may well soon change. 

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    Slots

    Online slot sites have become incredibly popular lately. There is no denying the fact that online slots are the most popular type of casino games. They have come a long way from the the first physical online slot machine, the one armed bandit which appeared in the 19th century. There is a wide variety of different games out there to play, it’s nice and simple, and you can potentially bag yourself some nice cash prizes too. If you find yourself with extra time on your hands during self-isolation, you should definitely try these slot sites out.

    Animal Crossing

    First released back in 2001, Animal Crossing has proven to be an ever-popular game with kids and adults alike. For those who aren’t familiar with Animal Crossing, it’s a life simulation game. Each game has you living in a new town, inhabited by cute human-like animals. You can visit other people’s towns, decorate and expand your house etc. Nintendo launched Animal Crossing: New Horizons earlier on this year, and people are already loving it.

    The Legend Of Zelda: Link’s Awakening

    Released in September 2019, Links Awakening is the latest edition to The Legend Of Zelda franchise, and a remake of the original released back in 1993. Playing as Link, you awake in a unfamiliar place away from Hyrule, where there are talking animals and monsters roaming free. You must discover your whereabouts, exploring the island with all its traps and dangers.

    The new Link’s Awakening is an almost perfect example of a remake: it retains everything that made the original so memorable, while making it work for a modern audience.

    The Outer Worlds

    This action role-play game, released in October 2019, is another highly popular game of the year just past.  In the early stages of the game, players can build their own character and unlock a ship. This functions as the games’ central hub space, and provides a fast travel point to access different locations within the game. The player then ventures off on various missions, fighting off enemies and developing their technical skills. 

    Clash Of Clans

    Available to download on the app store, Clash Of Clans is definitely a great game to get into whilst your self-isolating. Mobile gamers love it for its engaging gameplay and competitive scene. In fact, around 3 million people play Clash Of Clans each an every month.

    You simply build yourself a base, protect it, train up your troops and attack others. As you procure more gold and resources, your base will grow bigger and bigger. It’s fairly simple, but incredibly addictive.

    The Game Of Life

    Unfortunately for a lot of people, broadband speeds are down due to Covid-19, meaning playing online games and video games might not be as easy as it usually is. However, there are loads of great board games out there to enjoy still, including The Game Of Life. This is a great game for the entire family to get involved with. It’s a two to six players game, centered around money. The wealth your token car collects as it travels around the board represents your score, with the aim of the game being to finish the game as the wealthiest player on the board. This game has been a family favourite since the 90s, and well worth ordering if you haven’t already got it tucked away in your cupboard somewhere.

    Ludo

    Another great board game to enjoy if your broadband speeds are down is Ludo. This game has been a true board game classic for decades, with its super simple rules and fast-spaced action.

    Ludo was actually first invented back in India in the 6th century, known then as Pachisi. By the late 19th century, variations of the game made it to England, one appearing in 1896 and taking on the new name that we all now know it by.

    With many of us now having to spend a lot of time indoors, there is no better time to try out a new game, whether that be online slots, a new video game or even getting back into playing a classic family board game. Times are tough for everyone right now, so let games distract you from the all the craziness in the world for at least a little while longer.

    This is a collaborative post.

  3. We are in week one of our homeschooling due to the Corona virus and my new "co-workers" are yet to figure out how to make a decent cup of tea.

    We are all adjusting to our new normal and we have already had multiple websites crashing, due to so many people logging on at the same time. It is interesting to learn how impatient we all are when we simply expect something to work.

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    We are all so used to access to the world at the touch of a button. What with anytime-anywhere convenience, people crave immediacy and instant gratification while the always-connected nature of today’s world means that consumers – and businesses – expect to get things faster than ever before.

    new study by promotional products retailer 4imprint, reveals the true extent to which Britain has become an impatient nation.

    Some of the stats are surprising .....

    • 84 percent of UK adults class themselves as impatient
    • Nearly three quarters (73 per cent) admit they have become less patient in recent years
    • 41 percent said nothing is more frustrating than wasted time
    • 21 percent put their impatience down to getting bored quickly
    • 18 percent said they are so used to getting things instantly from the internet they often expect it in every aspect of life
    • 13 percent said they hate waiting for anything
    • Three in ten admit they binge watch boxsets because they don’t want to wait to find out what happens next
    • 34 per cent cross the road before the green man appears
    • A quarter say they will hang up the phone if they are on hold for more than five minutes
    • 24 per cent will walk out of a shop or restaurant if there aren’t enough staff/ all the staff are busy, or menu hasn’t come quick enough
    • 21 per get frustrated if someone doesn’t text you back immediately        
    • 18 per cent never read to end of articles
    • Work is major cause of impatience
    • A third claim the pressures of modern life have made them constantly pushed for time.

    Can you relate to any of these? The research was commissioned following a surge in demand from businesses that need promotional products delivering within 24 hours.

    So with home schooling the children and working from home, I have a sneaky feeling that work "may" rise a little higher on my own impatience list in the coming weeks.

    We may have become an impatient nation but staying connected to our friends and family is important right now. Curbing our impatience and remembering to be kind in unprecendted times is what we all need to do. kelly-sikkema-4le7k9XVYjE-unsplash

    This is a collaborative post.

     

     

     

     

  4. I always say that I can't be old enough to have a teenage daughter but apparently I am.

    It is also said that having a teenager can be worse than a toddler and although whilst they can be just as messy (!!), having a teenager in the house has brought as much fun and laughter as it has challenges. Although if you ask my quietly confident teen, she will tell you that she is a dream to live with!

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    Let's be honest, we all know that being a teenager has its own unique challenges, but it’s also the perfect time to shape mental wellbeing and happiness. We were therefore thrilled to receive a copy of Be Happy, Be You from Becky Goddard Hill and Penny Alexander. The book is a positive and insightful guide for teenagers giving them the tools they need to build confidence, eliminate negative feelings and boost happiness in all areas of life. (and who wouldn't want that?)

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    Be Happy Be You has been created to guide teenagers through this time - packed with tons of ideas to try from creating an anxiety toolkit, planning a digital detox to meditating and fashion with the planet in mind. Becky and Penny also help to explain the science behind why these activities are important and why they work. Combining mindfulness activities with practical advice, this book makes the perfect thoughtful gift for teenagers.

    That said, it is a useful reminder for parents too. I admit to having a look through the book first and the recurring theme is (unsurprisingly) happiness and there is a lot to be said for that, whatever your age. The book is split into three sections and it has lots of activities not just "advice" making it something that you can pick up and return to, rather than having to "wade" through intensely.

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    We were kindly gifted our copy but you can buy Be Happy, Be You on Amazon for £9.99 (although currently on offer at the time of publishing)

    There is also a group of amazing bloggers helping to promote and share their thoughts on the book following its launch, why not take a browse through and see what they each thought?

    Be Happy

    Boo Roo and Tigger Too 

    A Mummy Too

    Who’s the Mummy   

    Emma and 3 

    The Diary of a Frugal Family 

    Little LilyPad (me today)

    Growing Family  

    Steph’s two girls 

    Actually Mummy   

    Mummy from the heart