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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Category: The Toddler Years

  1. The Family Rules

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    The Family Rules, do your family have them? I don't mean those gorgeous wall prints that you can buy that have a fabulous list of things to live by but I mean the actual ones that work in your family? You "may" have heard recently that there was a marriage proposal on the Lilypad and the "rules" are for marriage as well as for children, so here is what works in our house.

    Treat each other with respect. No hurting anyone’s feelings (no yelling, putdowns, or name calling). No hurting anyone’s body (no hitting, pushing, or kicking). Ask permission to borrow things, don't just take them. The Man on the Pad always believes that I should be treated with the same respect as he gave me on our first date, which thankfully means no head holding under the duvet covers! (I shall not say anymore)

    Put yourself in my place. This is a particular favourite of the Man on the Pad, whereby he stands by the ethos that if he thinks I would not like what he is doing, he doesn't do it. (I love this one) We encourage this with the children too.

    Pick up after yourself - this is a work in progress.

    Be generous. Not always with money but with your energy, time and consideration. (although I am never going to turn down a cartier watch)

    Apologise and admit when you are wrong. Its not the easy choice but we all have to take responsibility for our behavior by creating a rule about how to respond if they’ve hurt someone. 

    Forgive. There is alot to be said for letting go. A grudge only continues to hurt you.

    Tell the truth. Children can’t tell the difference between “white lies” and other lies so if you’re going to stress the importance of honesty, you’ll need to show them that you’re honest too. (Not sure where the land lies about Father Christmas on this one though)

    Be silly once in a while. Don’t take yourself too seriously. Laugh. Alot. They say that Laughter is the best medicine and laughter lines are way better than frown ones!

    Be there. Give your family not only your time, but your attention. Work and life can get in the way but take time to be there completely when you are with them.  

    With your children and your partner. Love the good things, see the best bits and FALL IN LOVE OVER and OVER and OVER again.

     The Rule Book

    Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at

  2. Are we wearing out the naughty step?

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    I was once that smug mother, you know the type, the one who has the "perfect" child, who sleeps through the night, hits all her milestones and left me thinking I had it all under control. I may have confessed this before but apparently this had nothing to do with my parenting and more to do with her placid and compliant nature. My youngest daughter came into our lives to remind me that I am a normal mum (who apparently likes sleep much more than she does) but I need to deal with her behaviour in a way that is not normal for my control freak like nature.

    My youngest daughter is what some would call "spirited" and last week I used the naughty step for the first time. Unfortunately it wasn't just one time. She even seemed proud to tell Daddy when he got home from work. She understood that she was sitting there because she had been naughty but I am not sure it is an effective technique for her. She is a character and I don't want to crush her spirit but she also needs to know that a temper tantrum is not the way to solve her frustration.

    I asked some fellow mums what they did to discipline and encourage their toddlers and they came back with some really interesting suggestions.

    Walk & Talk

    Becky from Baby Budgeting said "It is really really hard for spirited children to sit still and process things as they often will just feel resentment at being 'contained' I think a walk and talk works better with their energy...guidance and support to achieve what you want them to do rather than isolation (as it can feel like punishment). Thinking helps calm an emotional/angry child too (medically proven!) so getting them to count/read/do simple maths allows the chemicals to stop racing. Consequences (if necessary )can always come later I think".

    Time Out

    Helen from Kiddycharts said "We called it "time out" as naughty was a word I would rather avoid using. Time in their room works, I usually let them calm down and then we have a cuddle and a chat. The reason for going usually means someone has been a little bit aggressive, shall we say, and needs time away from the situation to calm down"


    Penny from Alexander Residence suggested counting. "For some reason counting worked, I have no idea what he thought would happen when I got to 5 but it seemed to have the desired effect"

    Naughty Box

    I was a little worried that Kelly from Domestic Goddesque was going to suggest putting the toddler in the box but actually love her suggestion. She said "I developed the Naughty Box into which my daughter's favourite toy of the day must be put if she trangresses massively".

    I love some of these ideas and will be trying them over the next few weeks in the hope that we can avoid Christmas Temper Tantrums.



    This won't be the first blog post on those Toddler Tantrums and I have more fabulous suggestions to share and try. But for now, it seems that I am the one wearing out the naughty step. I was sitting on the stairs the other day and the little one looked at me and said "you been naughty mommy?"

    She is just too darn cute for me to be cross for long!


    Image courtesy of imagerymajestic at

  3. World Toilet Day : Potty Training

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    Potty training is big news on the Lilypad at the moment and whilst toilet habits are not usually the focus of our blog posts, when we were told this week about about World Toilet Day and how 40% of the population don't have access to a toilet, we wanted to get a little more involved.

    Firstly, I cannot imagine not having access to a toilet. It seems ludicrous. To be honest, I am sure my children think that access maybe revoked at any time as you can guarantee the minute I go into the bathroom, one of them will need the toilet. Mums are not allowed to go to the bathroom alone. (Someone should write that into the expectant parents handbook).

    Although, I suppose it is a fair assumption because through our potty training adventure, the little one is never allowed to go to the toilet alone.

    There is always celebration and there is always an audience.

    Despite those celebrations, there is the occasional mishap too and unfortunately for the Man on the Pad, it was on his watch! I was taking my eldest daughter out to gymnastics and he was relaxing at home with the little one, unfortunately she was relaxing a little too much and "forgot" to go to the toilet. She moved on the sofa (I am so grateful for the leather sofa) and my other half wondered where the melted chocolate had come from ...... now we all know that it wasn't melted chocolate! He has no sense of smell, so thank goodness he realised before he went to taste it! <<shudder>>

    This post is part of the World Toilet Day promotion and I am part of the #Blog4Sanitation movement setup by Splashdirect to raise awareness of the importance of global sanitation. Learn more about World Toilet Day here

    World Toilet Day - An infographic bought to you by the team at Splashdirect

  4. Parenting Myths : True or False

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    I remember as a child my mum saying “if you eat carrots you will see in the dark” and another favourite was “if you eat your crusts, you will have curly hair”. Now I have worn glasses since the age of 9 so there is as much chance of me seeing in the light or dark as there is knitting fog and given the fact that my brother had no hair by his late twenties, let alone curly hair, it kind of blows these parenting theories out of the window.

    I had to laugh at this video created by CANparent, who are a new Government (DfE) initiative aimed at providing high quality parenting classes to support the parenting skills of both mothers and fathers. The video even mentions the carrots ….. they must have spoken to my mum!!

    As a parent myself, I now know that mums and dads will do almost anything to convince a child to “eat their greens” or other such good things but parenting myths have a tendency to become folklore through the generations.

    Parents love to categorise and one of the most renowned myths is “The Terrible Twos”.  The "twos" -- or more accurately, a period in time that falls somewhere between 18 and 30 months of age -- are terrible only if you're unprepared (speaks she who is riding the wave of a determined two year old). 

    Now anyone who has had a 2 year old will find that sometime during that 12 months period, it's almost certain that your beautiful pleasant mild mannered baby will be replaced by a stubborn, argumentative and tantrum-prone toddler. Familiar anyone? I was having a chat with some fellow mums only yesterday and the general consensus was that toddlers are essentially little people and they are just learning to exert their personality. 

    We have found that praising often works wonders, like  “You did a wee wee on the potty! Well done!” (followed by clapping and some dancing) But when a tantrum erupts, it seems the best thing to do is ignore her, as long as she isn't hurting anyone. Shouting or similar attempts to subdue—even with affection— can sometimes make tantrums last longer. (trust me, I know). 

    So are the terrible two’s a myth? In my opinion, there's no denying it, 2-year-olds are totally cute! Their curiosity about the world is infectious and as parents it is our responsibility to encourage their character, not crush their personality. Trying to get a toddler to conform is the only terrible thing about it! 

    For more information about CANparent and expert parenting advice visit and “Like” the CANparent Facebook page.

    What are your favourite parenting myths?