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. The Baby Essential List

    Posted on

    A few weeks ago I held a friends newborn baby and my ovaries ached (shhh don't tell my husband) and whether is your first, second, third or twentieth thanks to Britain's largest family The Radford's, I don’t think the feeling of excitement, joy and sheer emotion of having a new baby ever changes. However, just as you can feel excited about the prospect you can also feel overwhelmed and worried about it. It’s a rollercoaster ride of emotions that is for sure. Once you are over the initial excitement, you can start to think about the future and preparing yourself for the arrival of your new baby. But what do you really need?

    If this is your second child or beyond, you may be blessed with things you have kept from your first born. The most popular things to keep tend to be push chairs and car seats, even nursery furniture and clothing. So if you do have their benefit now would be the ideal time to sort through the loft or storage areas and see exactly what you have. It can also help determine how much you need to invest in for the new baby. But for some, you are starting from scratch and so you may feel like you have a big endless list of things to buy or consider for your new baby, but actually there are not as many essentials as you possibly once thought.



    Somewhere to sleep

    Baby’s need a place to sleep, after all, they tend to spend those first few weeks sleeping a lot. So you may want to consider what sort of arrangements you are going to have in place for this. Of course, there are moses baskets that offer great flexibility for sleeping. But you could also consider the more permanent arrangements such as a cot that will potentially live in the baby’s nursery. There are all sorts of accessories to consider when it comes to sleeping arrangements, particular mattresses and sleeping aids, so it’s always advisable to do your research to ensure that the products you think you might not will actually be beneficial.

    The feeding arrangements

    Some people choose to breastfeed, others choose to bottle feed. Whichever route you decide to embark on is a decision only you can make and it is personal to you and how you feel. Sometimes you may have plans to feed in a certain way and things just don't go to plan. There are, however, essentials that could work with each type of feeding possibility such as breast pumps for breastfed baby’s or bottles and sterilisers for the bottle fed ones. Make the choice and then ensure you have what you need to embark on the feeding journey you choose.

    Clothing for those first few weeks and months

    We can often get a little carried away when it comes to buying clothes for a new baby. It’s all those cute little outfits you see in shop windows or websites like Next or Zara. The truth is, in those first weeks and months the chances are your new baby will live in rompers and sleepsuits. Cute outfits are great, but don’t have too many where you run the risk of your baby outgrowing them before they even have a chance to wear them. Be careful with your purchases, and instead, by a few months ahead to ensure you have a steady stream of clothing from newborn size onwards.



    Dealing with siblings

    It can be hard to handle siblings when you are expecting a new child. You run the risk of feelings of jealousy creeping or feeling left out. It can be hard to remember at times there are other feelings to consider, especially when you are exciting and concentrating on taking care of yourself through pregnancy. The essential factor here is to ensure that you involve your child in the process of welcoming another baby. That might be a surprise gender reveal or making it a big event to announce the new sibling. It might just be arranging a private scan so that they get to meet their new sibling, a 4D scan could be a great bonding experience.

    Getting out and about

    You might need to consider the getting out and about arrangements for you new baby. Which could mean doing research on travel systems, push chairs and car seats. The car seat essentially is something you need for the hospital to get you home safely, so that may become your priority if you are planning on spreading the bigger purchases. There are options to suit all budgets in this field, and the best advice would be to go out and visit them and try them out and see how they feel. People have opinions from the top end of the budgets right through to some of the cheaper options available on the market.

    Finally, make sure you take care of your own well being. Taking time out for yourself, enjoying a nice book and a relaxing bath. They may not be essentials that cost much, but they can make all the difference to how you feel.

  2. Why parents favour flower names

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    So the National stats have sealed it, mums and dads to be are favouring flower names for their little pink bundles of joy. In fact, out of the top 100 baby girl names, 12 spots are taken up by floral type names.

    Lily, Poppy, Daisy, Rose, us Brits just can't get enough, apparently.

    In fact, with so many names up there, it’s made me wonder just why we're favouring the florals. Some names have jumped a whopping 400 places in the last decade. It’s a floral frenzy!

    LLP - Why parents favour flower names

    I've pondered on it, of course, and here’s my take on why flower names are trending once again.

    Pretty name, pretty personality

    From Lily to Iris and all that’s in-between, when we name our children, we allow ourselves to imagine what they may be.

    Think about it, how often do expectant parents turn their nose up at certain names. Those ones that remind us of the school bully? Names that connote snobby standards? Names that make Santa’s naughty list before baby is born? We all know the ones.

    When we choose a flower name for little girls, we are taking inspiration from nature. Calm, beautiful, natural, flowers are individually intricate, yet one of life’s most simple pleasures.

    Happy and at ease, wherever they grow, what more could you want for your newborn?

    It is easy to remember

    With so many new name creations and choices, a simple and elegant flower name is quite simply easy to remember (and spell). Having our own little Flora Queen also helps my husband remember my favourite flowers when it comes to valentines and anniversaries.

    Keeping it in the family

    While the flower name boom is only just hitting its modern-day peak, it isn’t the first time florals have dominated. The first era of flower names was in bloom between the mid-1890s to around 1920. 100 years on and now these names are more popular than ever.

    Of course, there’s something quite romantic about an olden name being used in today’s times, but that not might be the full story. So many expectant parents choose to register their children in memory of late great-grandmothers and even grandmothers. Carrying middle names is a popular tradition too.

    The rise in flower names could just be a nod to those wonderful women.

    Maybe they just like it?

    Oh my gosh, ground-breaking, I know. But as names become popular, and we hear them more and more, they do grow on us. Sometimes unknowingly.

    When we choose our children’s names, we often look at what sounds right for the time. For most mums and dads, this will be completely different to names that were about when they graced the playground. In fact, one sure way to feel old is to attempt giving bump your best mates’ names. You’re archaic. Good luck for the teen years.

    And so it goes, popular girls names right now are Lily, Poppy, Willow and the kind. And falling on mum-to-be’s ears, what better name could there be for bump?

  3. Why mobile insurance is important with a pre-teen

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    Last year I gave in and allowed my eldest daughter to have a mobile phone, with a list of rules as long as your arm ..... including DO NOT DROP it! At the time I told her that I wouldn't replace it if she broke or lost it but I didn't tell her that I took out insurance on the phone, just in case.

    LLP - Why mobile insurance is important with a pre-teen!

    We all know that insurance products generally take the pinch out of paying up for loss, theft or damage of valuables. Mobile insurance is no different, provided the premiums are fully paid and conditions for making a claim are met. Reports have revealed that some mobile insurance policies may not actually offer coverage as promised in the adverts, which makes it very important for you to carefully read the fine print before signing up for mobile phone insurance, and before making a claim as well. One of the common conditions that tend to skip the eye/mind is that theft could be covered only when forced or, for that matter, theft or loss must be reported within a specific time.

    Even if you do manage to meet all conditions and file a claim, just how many times will a mobile insurance cover your losses? A question worth pondering if you have butter fingers or a tendency to lose/misplace valuables. 

    Mobile Insurance Claims – Premium and Excess

    The number of mobile insurance claims that one can make are likely to vary based on the insurance product/provider, the value of the mobile phone, and the paid-up premium. In fact, if you’ve opted to pay up the insurance premium on a monthly basis, you may be required to pay the full amount upfront before making your first claim. The more expensive the mobile phone, the higher the risk and, hence, the higher the premium and excess.

    An excess is a sum of money that you are required to shell out from your pocket when you make a claim. Excess amounts can get more punishing with each claim that you make – in some cases, time limitations may apply. 

    For instance, a £25 excess is payable on claims on ordinary mobile phones, while excess on iPhones tend to be double the amount when a claim is filed for the first time. You could land up paying twice the excess amount on the second claim on the iPhone. Insurance claims for two different phones within the same year can also spike the excess by 100 percent. 

    The excess amount charged per claim varies from one insurance provider to another and is definitely higher if the mobile phone is an expensive one such as the iPhone. 

    Mobile Insurance Claims – Maximum Limit?

    The number of mobile insurance claims you can file during a 12-month period differs from one insurance provider to another. There are insurance firms that offer instant cover with unlimited claims with an excess of £25, but for brand new mobile phones. Yet, others limit the claims to just two per mobile phone in a given year. Do remember and watch out for exclusions, conditions, limitations and excesses, which are an integral part of mobile insurance products.

    However, similar to home/vehicle insurance, mobile insurance costs may increase or decrease based on the number of claims made. Do note that switching mobile insurance providers may get difficult as most of them offer policies applicable to gadgets purchased less than six months ago! 

    The reliability of mobile insurances differs greatly, partly because of the type and extent of cover they offer and also because of the way they are availed. Package bank account, mobile phone warranty, or even home content insurance can (to some extent) offset costs incurred on repair/replacement of mobile devices, but not without other consequences. 

    It is, therefore, a must to shop around for a good offering from a reputed provider, handle and protect the mobile phone responsibly and, of course, report incidents of threat/loss or damage in a timely manner with the prescribed documentation to make best use of mobile insurance products.

    Here are a few options for iPhone insurance that covers loss;

    only Ultimate cover iPhone insurance covers you for both theft and loss

    Asurion offers loss coverage

    Loveitcover it offer a decent deal too

    As for my daughter, she managed a whole year of looking after her phone until one of her friends managed to drop it in a plant pot, but that is a whole other story. 

    Thank goodness for insurance eh?

  4. 10 top tips that’ll help your family avoid the winter blues

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    Summer is long gone, and winter will soon arrive. In many ways, it can be the best season of the entire year. However, there’s no doubt that it has the potential to cause woes and worries too. Therefore, taking the necessary precautions to banish those blues is really important.

    Here are 10 focus points that will help you avoid many of the problems that modern families find themselves facing at this time of year.   

    Snowman, Snow, Two, Winter, Friends, New Year'S Eve


    Preparing for Christmas

    They say it’s the most wonderful time of the year, but Christmas can be a worrying time for families. We try to avoid the materialistic focus, but consumerism has taken over. Treating the kids is a key ingredient in the recipe for festive fun. Unfortunately, if you’re not careful, you’ll be seeing the colour red long after Santa has visited. Sadly, it’ll be all over your bank statements.

    You might not like to admit it, but Christmas is approaching at a rapid speed. Start saving now to get ahead of the game, and you’ll stand a far better chance of encountering the financial headaches you fear. In turn, that’ll allow the whole family to enjoy a far better holiday period.

    Staying fit and healthy

    Unfortunately, there’s no escaping the fact that you’ll probably suffer a bout of flu or minor illness during the next few months. However, without the right precautions, there’s a good chance that you’ll encounter those health issues on a far more frequent basis. Prevention is always the best form of protection, so getting the necessary injections should be top of the agenda. 

    Moreover, you must learn to embrace habits that’ll prevent the threat of germs spreading. Keeping the home clean and organised is vital. Meanwhile, my husband always talks about great hydration and a little daily exercise that can help the body sweat out early signs of flu before it takes its toll. It won’t stop all winter colds, but it can go a long way to helping.

    Keeping up appearances

    Hair, Styling, Style, People, Winter, Seasons, Tree


    Aside from attacking your physical health, the winter weather can harm your appearances too. In many areas, such as the skin, it can damage both. Therefore, protecting your family is just as crucial at this time of the year as it is in the summer. Even if the precautions are vastly different.

    The wind is another annoying weather type, and it can ruin hairstyles and general appearance. Sadly, looking less than your best can quickly reduce your confidence and natural energy. While this is more likely to affect parents rather than kids, it is a family issue. On a similar note, encouraging a better night’s sleep will significantly boost your appearances. 

    Preventing household damage

    Harsh weather conditions can put the home in a vulnerable position. Prevention is the best form of protection, and covering potentially problematic areas is key. Meanwhile, if you spot signs of damp or other issues in the property, a quick response will stop the damage growing into something worse.

    Letting the trouble escalate will cause far greater emotional and financial headaches in the long run. Borrowing a little money from someone like New Horizons to overcome those obstacles will remove those long-term problems. Let’s face it; knowing that the home is in great health will make a world of difference to your happiness throughout the winter months and beyond.

    Warming the house for winter

    Physical damage isn’t the only home-related concern during the winter months. Maintaining a solid temperature is an equally crucial responsibility. After all, no family wants to be left walking around the home wrapped up in four or five layers of clothing.


    Insulation is vital, which makes this the perfect time of year to upgrade the windows or loft insulation. Meanwhile, ensuring that the heating systems are working as required should be another item on the checklist. Remember that all radiators should be left unobstructed. A great little hack, however, is to use shelving above them to help circulate the heat more efficiently.

    Be ready for severe weather

    Winter weather is bad enough at the best of times. However, a snowstorm or seriously adverse conditions can cause havoc (a bit like the Hurricane this week). This may result in schools being shut while getting to the shops could become difficult too. In some scenarios, power lines may be cut for an extended period.    

    Stocking up on some tinned foods is always worthwhile. Creating a suitable emergency kit including torches, batteries and household items can be very useful. If you don’t have a fireplace, candles and blankets are equally important. Otherwise, you could be left in a very uncomfortable situation, which will also make it a far lot scarier for the kids. Avoid it at all costs.

    Resurrect the garden

    Once winter falls, many homeowners allow the garden to fade into obscurity. However, your outside areas can still boast plenty of life throughout the colder months. If you have a decking area with garden lights and a heater, there’s nothing to stop you hosting small gatherings. That fresh air is wonderful, and you don’t have the worries associated with going out elsewhere.

    It’s also worth noting that winter BBQs can be incredibly delicious. These recipes from Backyard Boss are a great starting point. There’s no doubt that you’ll be able to find a suitable solution for your family and friends. If nothing else, this can help banish the winter loneliness.

    outdoor snow winter smoke recreation roast ice meal cooking flame fire arctic tourism meat barbecue heat preparation cook picnic fun charcoal barbecuing mongolia kebab grilled shashlyk


    Consider getting some winter fun

    Given that this is an expensive time of the year, taking a vacation might not be viable. Then again, getting some winter sun can be a lot cheaper than going away in the summer. Perhaps more importantly, you’re more likely to appreciate the break from the cold and rain.   

    Even if it means sacrificing the summer vacation, you’ll still have fun at home during June and July.  The options back home are far more restrictive during a wet February. Besides, it’s always nice to start the new year with something special to look forward to as a family. Coming back home with a tan while everyone else looks pale is a nice bonus.   

    Make preparations for next summer

    When the summer returns, you’ll be desperate to start enjoying the warmer weather from day one. By putting in the prep work now, the whole family will be able to do just that. This could include completing a few DIY projects or simply planning out activities. Besides, many of those summer products can be purchased in sales for a more cost-effective solution.

    Boredom is one of the biggest problems throughout the winter months. So, those activities can be a cure for this aspect too. Of course, that shouldn’t get in the way of current ideas. Still, investing a little time in preparation for summer can make the wait feel less daunting. Not least for the kids.

    Learn to enjoy the weather

    person winter girl hair photography female portrait child human blue close facial expression lip hairstyle smile laugh mouth close up human body cheerful face nose happy toddler eye head skin beauty organ laughter tooth sweetness emotion good mood portrait photography


    Winter weather can cause a lot of frustration, but it also boasts a unique charm. The snow, for example, can make the whole world look more beautiful than ever. Invest in Merrell walking boots and those family walks can become a winter winner. On a similar note, cooking delicious meals can be an incredible activity that brings you closer than ever.

    Life is what you make of it, and that’s no different in winter. A positive mindset will go a long way to letting you make the most of the colder months. Take the right approach, and this is sure to be the best winter your family has ever enjoyed. If that doesn’t inspire change, perhaps nothing will.