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 sustainable living, saving money, lifestyle and travel. It is hopefully helpful, sometimes funny and always honest.

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Category: Views & Ramblings

  1. iFly Basingstoke - Indoor Skydiving Review

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    Regular readers will know that I am hurtling towards a big birthday this year and have compiled a list of 40 things to do in my 40th year and one of those things was indoor skydiving. 

    iFly Basingstoke Review

    I have always wanted to do a real skydive but my fear of heights does make that a bit of a challenge although the adrenalin junkie inside me is still convinced that I could overcome it ..... if I could just get someone to push me out of a plane!

    I was talking to Emma from (not about pushing me out of a plane) but about my 40 list and she said she would love to come and try indoor skydiving with me. So we got in touch with iFly in Basingstoke and booked 2 x 2 minute sessions. 

    There are a number of iFly locations in the UK and while 2 x 2 minute sessions doesn't seem a lot, with the travelling and safety briefing, we really made a day of the adventure. You can see a bit more of this on Emma's vlog here >

    As you would expect there is a considerable amount of time going through the safety waivers, instructions and getting kitted out .... I have to warn you that you are never going to look overly glamorous in a blue jumpsuit and a helmet! Our instructor on the day was brilliant, he was enthusiastic, extremely thorough and really helpful even when we were a bit mischeivous. 


    You are taken through in small groups and I was first to go in our group (no pressure) and you literally jump into the wind tunnel and away you go. Trying to relax was actually my biggest problem as the more tense you are the less bouyant!! Who knew?

    I didn't wear my glasses (I thought it might be less scary if I couldn't see what was happening with clear vision) but iFly do have larger goggles to fit over glasses if you prefer.

    You might feel that 2 minutes would go really quickly but when you are in the tunnel it is surprising how long it actually feels, especially when you are conscious that you are being filmed. Trying to keep a smile on your face for the camera is definitely fun while you are concentrating on your body position, breathing normally and balance.


    I know my girls would love the indoor skydiving experience and as iFly welcome flyers from 3 to 103, I suspect we will be back. The only provisio is ensuring you have reasonable health and fitness, although while we were at the Basingstoke location we saw a gentleman who was unable to walk enjoying a flight, proving that disabilities are no barrier to any adrenalin seeker.

    The prices of the experience vary depending on what flight you choose but as I said at the top, we really made a day of it so whilst it may seem a little expensive for 4 minutes flying, it is certainly considerably cheaper than a skydive from a plane (and you don't need to worry about your parachute not opening!).

    I have loved the opportunity to tick something else off my list, to spend time with Emma but most importantly remind myself that I might be heading towards 40 but I still love an adventure! I highly recommend iFly to any adrenalin seekers! 

  2. 3 Ways to Upgrade Your Garage for Summer

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    When you think about getting your home ready for Summer, the garage may be the last area that comes to mind. It’s true, while we spend relatively little time in this part of the home, this is the place that’s often filled with a lot of our useful Summer-related items, so it needs to be accessible.

    Is your garage disorganised, hard to walk around and unwelcoming? Then here’s how to upgrade it for Summer.


    Introduce Proper Storage

    When you have a family, the garage quickly becomes filled with outdoor toys, as well as general junk. This can leave the space feeling more like a hazard zone, as you wade through an obstacle course.

    To solve this, introduce storage solutions. This could include wall hooks for hanging tools (just make sure they’re out of reach of little fingers), racks for bikes and scooters, as well as shelves and crates. This will come in handy when the kids are looking for skateboards and sporting equipment in the Summer.

    Don’t be afraid to have some fun with this, too. While shelves and plastic drawers will work, they’re not visually appealing. Instead, consider making pallet boxes, use wooden chests, or upcycle old furniture.

    Time to Paint

    You may spend hours choosing the perfect colour paint for your living room, but would you do the same for your garage? Probably not.

    As a rule, most people don’t consider painting their garage, but it can improve the space. You could paint the concrete floor with a hard-wearing paint, choose a tone to cover up those grey breezeblocks, or use metal paint to give your garage door a refresh.

    All of this will make your garage feel lighter and brighter. This results in a more practical and welcoming space, making it perfect for the Summer.

    Designated Work Station

    As well as storage, you should also be able to use a garage to carry out work. Whether this involves building your own furniture, completing an upcycle project, or repairing your car using SGS axle stands, a garage needs to be functional.

    After clearing space with your storage solutions, add a designated work station. This could just be a simple work bench, but it will make a huge difference to your hobby or DIY tasks.

    Also think about design here, too. After all, you’re more likely to complete projects if you have a comfortable chair and if the area looks visually appealing.

    There you have it. A few easy ways to update your garage and make it useful for Summer. Enjoy your renovations!

  3. Top Tips for Getting Outside & Active This Spring

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    The majority of us could benefit from spending more time outdoors. However, knowing this and doing something about it are two totally different things. If you’re determined to make a change but you’re unsure where to start, here you’ll discover some great ways to get active outdoors.


    Take up a new hobby

    What better way to renew your love of the outdoors than by getting involved in a new hobby? There are plenty of outdoor hobbies you can partake in which will help to get you fitter. Tennis, football, archery and even golf are all great examples of outdoor active hobbies. Golf may not seem like the best type of physical activity, but the amount of walking you’ll do as you work your way around the course is surprising.

    The point is to find an outdoor activity you actually enjoy. That way, you’re more likely to stick at it and you won’t need as much motivation to get outdoors.

    Join a club

    If you don’t trust yourself to stick to a new hobby and you need a little motivation (this might be me), why not join a club? This won’t just get you more active outdoors, it will also potentially boost your social life. There’s all kinds of clubs you can join too from running clubs to tennis clubs – whatever activity you’re into, you can bet there’s at least one club you can join.

    You could even get the family involved and take up classes such as skating. Skateboarding is a popular activity for kids, but it can be surprisingly fun for adults too. You’ll just need a few bits of equipment to get started such as a high-quality skateboard, but if you shop at stores such as SkateHut, it won’t break the bank. 


    Get walking

    Of course, one of the best ways to get active outdoors is to go walking. This again has multiple benefits. You won’t just get more active, but you’ll experience all of the benefits of being out in nature. Did you know you can experience life-changing benefits simply from walking just 30 minutes a day?

    As you can see, there’s a lot of ways you can get more active outdoors. Whatever your interests and fitness level, there’s always something enjoyable you can do to improve your health and fitness. Getting outdoors more will also boost your Vitamin D levels, which in turn will benefit your overall health.


    You never know, you might see me walking the school run in the mornings yet .......

  4. Birthday Presents for Dads – For the Man Who Has Everything

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    Although Christmas is now a distant memory, there are other occasions that pop up throughout the year where we find ourselves buying gifts for our nearest and dearest. One such occasion is birthdays that come up all year around, but when it is your boyfriend/husband or father, you have to step up and go that one step further. It is my husbands birthday next month so am already on the present trail quest!

    If it feels as though the man you are buying for has everything that you can think of, then you really do need to knuckle down and put some real thought into what you can gift. From stunning jewellery to fun gadgets, here are some suggestions for birthday gifts for the man who has everything.

    Gifts for dad 1

    Drones – Keep Away from Children

    If the man in your life has a love for all things electrical, then the chances are that they will absolutely love a drone that they can fly around. These are not children’s toys and can hurt if they fly into you, potentially causing serious injuries.

    Make sure that any drone is used safely and responsibly, ensuring that children are kept at a safe distance. Even small drones that can fit in the palm of your hand can leave a nasty cut. When flown by a responsible adult, drones can provide lots of fun for recreational pilots.

    Fashion Accessories

    Does the man that you are buying for keep up with the latest fashion trends? Would he classify himself as a modern gentleman, taking pride in his appearance? If so, then you won’t go far wrong by gifting accessories such as jewellery that can be brought out for special occasions.

    Perhaps your boyfriend/husband has a wide range of shirts and ties that he likes to wear for nights out? If so, how about complimenting his look with a set of gold cufflinks or a simple yet effective tie pin that he can wear to finish off his outfit?

    Getaway for Two

    When was the last time that you got away, just the two of you? If you struggle to answer that question, or even if you don’t, surprising your man with a getaway for two is a fantastic gift. Just make sure that you have childcare sorted before you book – you wouldn’t want to spend money on a trip for two only to find out that you have to cancel as your babysitter has cancelled.

    The beauty of going away as a couple is that you don’t necessarily have to go very far at all. In fact, an overnight stay in a neighbouring city can be all that you need for a romantic break. After all, when the two of you are together, does it really matter where you are?

    Experience Day

    If none of the above catches your fancy, how about organising an experience day for your other half? Imagine the look on your partner’s face when they open up a gift of a driving day at a race circuit such as Silverstone or Donnington, or a tour around their favourite sports stadium?

    Materialistic gifts can often be left on the shelf gathering dust for years, while an experience day creates memories that will last a lifetime. If you have a common interest, why not organise an experience day that you can do together?

    Gifts for dad 2

    Don’t be afraid to think outside of the box when it comes to buying a gift for the father of your children. If you are crazy enough about each other to start a family together, then he will probably love anything that you give him as he will appreciate the thought put into the gift.

    Fingers crossed anyway!