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The role of motherhood
FAMILY BUCKET-LIST REVEALED
BEN FOGLE ON MAKING THE MOST OF THE CAPITAL
THROW A GARDEN PARTY TO REMEMBER WITH TIPS FROM CAROLE MIDDLETON
HOW TO RAISE A HAPPY CHILD
SUMMER CAMPS TO SUIT THE NEEDS OF YOUR LITTLE LEARNER
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POWER TO THE PEDAL : HOW TO ENCOURAGE LIFE ON TWO WHEELS
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WELCOME Well, that’s a relief… I don’t know about you, but the whole summer thing came around quite quickly for me this year?! When I hark back to long summer holidays as a child, where the biggest decision in a day was whether to have a strawberry- or vanilla-flavoured ice cream, I remember hours spent on my bike, seeing if my little legs could pedal faster than my sisters’. It’s a big thing, learning to ride a bike. Natalie Keeler looks at life on two wheels on page 56. As much as the summer break is welcome, it also leaves many parents wracking their brains, trying to fill the seemingly endless days – but how about if you became a tourist in your own town? We’ve put together the ultimate bucket list (p.60) with capital hot spots – and insider tips! Beyond London, it’s safe to say that festival season is upon us: if you’re looking to brave it with kids, check out Jo Caird’s family festival guide on page 62 – it’ll have you and your young ones rocking out in no time. And if you’re lucky enough to be celebrating a birthday this summer, whether it’s your own or one of your children’s, check out our resident party expert Carole Middleton’s top tips on throwing an al fresco bash to remember, on page 54. With talk of Baby Sussex being raised vegan, we’ve been looking into the benefits of this lifestyle choice and if it’s healthy for growing kids (p.72). And I’ve been on my own food expedition, travelling across London to find the best family-friendly restaurants (p.74) – it’s a tough job, but someone’s got to do it! Lastly, it wouldn’t be a summer issue without a good dose of holiday fashion inspo! We round up our favourite getaways on page 80, and if that tickles the travel itch, don’t miss our competition on page 18 – you could win a £500 voucher for a Niche Retreats break. Happy holidays.
RE BECCA MOORE , E DITOR A n d a fe w of my favour ite th ing s at the mom e nt…
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The finest places to stay in the south west and beyond
Call 0330 1271 540 or visit bluechipholidays.co.uk
C O N T E N TSummer S 2 019 FE ATU R ES
T R AVEL
18 WIN ! A LUXURY FAMILY BREAK
77 TRAVEL NEWS
Get your hands on an exclusive holiday
What’s new in the world of family travel?
voucher worth £500 from Niche Retreats
78 POSTCARD FROM BOTSWANA 32 MY LITTLE LONDON Broacaster Ben Fogle opens up about childood holidays and writing his first book
Zoey Goto embarks on a safari adventure
80 SUMMER BREEZE Top travel spots to take your tots this summer
34 THE GREAT OUTDOORS Emma O’Donovan rounds up the best reads for little bookworms
EDUCATION 84 EDUCATION NEWS
50 KNIGHTLEY DOES IT Actress Keira Knightley talks motherhood, Disney princesses and work-life balance
What’s new in and out of the classroom
86 READING THE MOOD Louise Pyne reveals how to equip your child
56 ON YOUR BIKE Teaching your child to cycle without stabilisers? Here’s how to approach it
with emotional intelligence
88 HAPPY CAMPERS Five of the best summer camps in the UK
60 THE ULTIMATE LONDON BUCKET LIST Top spots in the capital you simply must visit
62 ROCKING OUT Our guide to festival-going for families
70 BUTTERNUT BÖREK SNAKE
90 A WEE PROBLEM Useful tips for tackling bedwetting
R EGUL A R S 13 LITTLE NEWS The latest on all things big in kid world
David Frenkiel and Luise Vindhal share their favourite summertime picnic recipe
20 DIARY What’s going on over the next few months
72 PLANT-BASED EATING Is veganism a sensible lifestyle for children? Becky Dickinson investigates
74 BITE- SIZE The capital’s best kid-friendly dining spots
SHO PPIN G & ST YLE 23 LITTLE LOVES
36 INSTA INSPO We meet Louise at @three.little.tinkers
54 PARTY TIME WITH CAROLE MIDDLETON How to plan an al fresco-style summer fête
65 INTERIOR NEWS Inspiring finds from brands big and small
Say goodbye to soggy shoes with the super-cool Quickdry Collection from Bobux
66 GET CRAFTY Seasonal activities to keep kids busy
25 SUNNY DELIGHT Here comes the summer! Spread some joy with these stylish outdoor pieces PHOTOGRAPHY: HELEN MARSDEN MODEL: KALEB RAINCOAT, FROM £74, PETIT BATEAU. COTTON T-SHIRT, £48, STELLA MCCARTNEY. MODEL: MATTEO RAINCOAT, £350, BURBERRY AT ALEX AND ALEXA. COTTON-MIX T-SHIRT, £52, CARAMEL. WOVEN COTTON TROUSERS, £48, BEAU LOVES
38 INTO THE WOODS Vibrant brights and floral prints steal the
69 FOOD NEWS The latest foodie finds for your mini diners
93 AGENDA The best events for families this summer
show in our new-season fashion edit
98 THE BUSINESS 46 NATURE’S WAY The children’s brands with eco credentials
Behind the scenes with Yuki Oshima, founder of childrenswear brand Owa Yurika
THIS ISSUE’S CONTRIBUTORS ZOEY GOTO
journalist Where do you live?
Where do you live?
What’s your favourite thing about summer?
Everyone’s mood is lifted! I love the summer so much that we named our eldest daughter after the season! First memory of London?
My grandparents lived near Kensington Palace and we used to go and play spot the royals. Zoey goes on safari on p.78
What’s your favourite thing about summer?
Long, lazy picnics in the park and booking a summer getaway in the sunshine.
First memory of London?
We took a pedal boat out on the Serpentine Lake and giggled as we fed the ducks huge chunks of bread.
Louise looks into boosting children’s emotional intelligence on p.86
little london EDITORIAL
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Keep up to date with the latest news, events and products online
N U F T N A W E W IN T HE SUN
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london FRANKIE PHOTOGRAPHED BY KELCIE JOHN-LEWIS
This adorable little chap lives in Essex with his mum Kelcie and dad Lee. Come rain or shine, Frankie is a huge beach fan, who loves days filled playing on the sand with his toy dinosaur and throwing stones into the sea. Bliss!
N U F T N A W E W IN T HE SUN
ly developed to ial ec sp is e ng ra re ca n su r ou A and UVB rays. UV om fr in sk e’s on e tl lit ur protect yo suitable For it’s so moisturising, it’s even ople who sensitive skin AND safe for pe may be prone to eczema. ch ilds farm .com
Maggie & Rose, the ultimate family destination, is landing in your neighbourhood this september! Expect a hip hangout at our Family Membersâ€™ Club and Nursery, right on your doorstep, with epic spaces for little ones and grown-ups to eat, play and learn together! Get in touch and find out more about our awesome offering and early bird options! email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org www.maggieandrose.com/islington Maggie & Rose maggieandrose
little NEWS Updating you on all things big in kid world
WORK OF ART
Small Stories, the artful clothing brand for kids, has looked to the woods for its latest collection: ladybugs, bouncing bunnies and daisy prints adorn tracksuits, dungarees and dresses in this 25-piece collection for boys and girls up to age seven. This season, the brand’s signature spot print has been reimagined in some striking colour combos; we especially like the green and white. smallstories.co.uk
The latest collection by Small Stories has taken its inspiration from nature
What makes a ‘super mum’? According to a survey of children by jeweller Beaverbrooks, she must be funny, give cuddles and bake cakes but not be late, kiss them in front of their friends, sing badly or get road rage. beaverbrooks.co.uk LITTLELONDONMAGAZINE.CO.UK
We adore the matching sleepwear sets for women and children from Look & Cover. Traditional button-up pyjamas feature white piping and a bespoke embroidered monogram on the chest. Shades range from classic white and navy to dusky pink, sage green and lilac. £45 for children’s set, lookandcover.co.uk
BEST FOOT FORWARD
Aldo’s fashion-forward shoes are now available for little ones. Fun meets function in its new kids collection, featuring covetable styles from floral-embellished trainers to glittery block-heel sandals and camo-print wellies. There are even matching mini-me styles. Available for boys and girls from sizes four to 14. aldoshoes.com
Twish is the new app designed to take the stress out of children’s birthdays, with the perfect gifting solution. Buy the birthday girl or boy something special, making present buying easier and more meaningful.
WIN a family ticket to see Alice in Wonderland
We’ve teamed up with Theatre on Kew to offer one lucky winner a family ticket to a classic production this summer. Set amongst the greenery of Kew Gardens, Alice in Wonderland is brought to life with colourful costumes, interactive games and catchy songs – whether they’re discovering the story of Alice for the first time, or it’s already a family-favourite, this bright adaptation is sure to captivate all ages. Enter online at littlelondonmagazine.co.uk/competitions
CHLOÉ GIRLS, FROM A SELECTION AT NET-A-PORTER.COM
MY PICKS THIS SEASON
Kate Freud Editor-at-large
ith Chloé Girls launching on Net-aPorter this spring, mini-me dressing has reached new heights – and pockets new depths. The pretty collection sings with the label’s playful and feminine signature styles – my absolute favourite is the velvet suit embroidered with horses. This isn’t your everyday, tree-climbing get-up, but boy it packs a beautiful punch for a special occasion. This year, I’m going to be kitting out all three kids in swimming costumes from my new favourite Gallic brand, Canopea. The unisex UPF 50+ swimwear is stylish and made from recycled fibres. As the summer holidays lurk around the corner, it’s a great time to stock up on activities that will buy you a few precious moments of peace, like this Multicoloured Kinoptik Robots game from Djeco. Designed to get your kids’ imaginations fired up, there are 58 illustrated magnets to make your very own robots with. Now that I have girls of my own, I love nothing more than a gentle perusal of accessories brand Mimi & Lula’s website, which is a veritable treasure trove of fun and fantasy. The new range has everything from fruit saladinspired hair clips and camera handbags, to fairy wings, capes, crowns, pom-pom garlands and rabbit ears. And we can’t see a reason why you – or your kids – can’t wear them all at the same time.
A Kind Word
Kind, a new book by Alison Green, is a celebration of kindness, with a foreword by Axel Scheffler and art by 38 illustrators, each work showing how to be kind – whether by sharing toys or making people feel welcome. For each copy sold, £1 will be donated to Three Peas, a charity for refugees from war-torn countries. £12.99, Scholastic
Dream In Colour
KINOPTIK ROBOTS GAME £16.95, CRAFTS4KIDS.CO.UK
CAMERA BAG £16, MIMIANDLULA.COM
GIRLS' SWIMSUIT FROM £28, CANOPEA-PARIS.COM
Encourage your little one to wind down at bedtime with the Aloka Colour and Shine SleepyLight. Kids use the wipe-clean pens to illuminate their design – be it a robot, mermaid or unicorn – and it then works as a nightlight or reading aid. £29.99, cheekyrascals.co.uk
E YE BALL S O F S TE E L
Vision Express has joined up with DC Comics to launch a new range of frames for little superheroes. The six styles have logos and graphics of the likes of Wonder Woman, Batman and Superman along the arms. Wearing glasses will feel like a superpower! visionexpress.com
PREPARE FOR TAKE-OFF Bedtime will never be the same, thanks to this new helicopter bed from Dragons of Walton Street. Made from steel and resin with a high-gloss finish, it features walkie-talkies, flashing tail lights, an optional topdeck desk and a flag that can be personalised. Made to order, so you choose carpet, leather and body colour. Price on application, dragonsofwaltonstreet.com
Peachick Books is a new digital service that brings young writing to life. Children write, illustrate and title their own stories and submit them online – and then they receive a ‘published’ copy to be treasured forever. peahenpublishing.com J U N G LE F EVE R
win WIN a family ticket to the ballet
Ballet Shoes, the classic tale of the fiesty Fossil sisters, is coming to London’s Peacock Theatre in July. The show is performed by the London Children’s Ballet, who give young dancers from all backgrounds the chance to be part of a professional ballet company. You can’t help but root for the sisters, who, determined to put their family’s name in the history books, enter performing arts school, and learn important lessons along the way. We’ve got a family ticket to give away to one lucky winner – visit the website for more details. Enter online at littlelondonmagazine.co.uk/competitions
Clarks has teamed up with National Geographic to raise awareness with a new line of shoes and boots inspired by endangered animals: from the neon skin of the panther chameleon to the markings of the African leopard. And the range is sustainable too: canvas is made from recycled plastic bottles, with recycled foam in the foot cushion and packaging made from recycled paper. clarks.co.uk/national-geographic
WIN A £500 HOLIDAY VOUCHER F
WITH NICHE RETREATS
rom dreamy barns and impressive country residences to fairytale woodland cottages and cosy seaside abodes, behind every memorable holiday there’s a remarkable place to stay. Property experts Niche Retreats have a handpicked portfolio to suit each and every family. The one thing that each of their distinctive properties has in common is a touch of the exceptional about them… and isn’t that what a holiday should be about?! Specialising in four- and five-star star gold retreats, found in idyllic destinations dotted around the British Isles, expect a family getaway like no other – from the corners of Cornwall to the wild heathlands of Northumberland. Lap up sumptuous spaces with big The Old Barn in Chelsworth, Suffolk, is a fine example of the type of properties in Niche Retreats’ portfolio
tables for hearty family meals or retreat to cosy nooks for warm drinks by the fireside. To celebrate the arrival of the holiday season, Little London has teamed up with Niche Retreats to offer one lucky family a £500 voucher for use on any break – whether it be a culture-inspired trip, dog-friendly break or big-group getaway. Prepare to be inspired. L nicheretreats.co.uk
To enter, visit littlelondonmagazine.co.uk/competitions SUBJECT TO AVAILABILITY. COMPETITION CLOSES AT 11:59PM ON 8 AUGUST 2019. THE VOUCHER CAN BE USED AGAINST ANY HOLIDAY. THE PRIZE IS A £ 500 VOUCHER FOR USE ON ANY COTTAGE BREAK FROM NICHE RETREATS. THE HOLIDAY MUST BE TAKEN BEFORE 31/12/19. FOR STAYS WITH A VALUE GREATER THAN £ 500, THE BALANCE WILL BE PAYABLE BY THE WINNER. STANDARD BOOKING TERMS AND CONDITIONS APPLY. PRIZE IS NON-REFUNDABLE AND NON-TRANSFERABLE.
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The iconic Seven Dials Sundial is getting a oneday festival for its birthday SEVENDIALS.CO.UK
Rackets at the ready – the first day of Wimbledon has finally arrived, and here at Little London HQ we plan to stay glued to the coverage over the next fortnight. Got yourself a tennis-loving tot? They’ll look ace hitting balls in this navy and white number from Poivre Blanc.
What to do and where to go in the capital over the next few months
6 by some of the capital’s leading architects, kids will also be encouraged to create their own structures using recycled plastic waste. open-city.org.uk
The South of England Show returns this weekend! But it’s not all farming and cattle; this year’s event includes face painting, fairground rides and appearances from Paw Patrol’s finest. The best part? Kids go free! From £20, seas.org.uk Open House Families festival of architecture
Little feet across the UK will be pounding the pavement in Barnardo’s Big Toddle this week. The annual fundraising event sees thousands of nurseries take part in sponsored walks on behalf of the children’s charity; simply look online to find events in your area. barnardos.org.uk
POIVRE BLANC TENNIS DRESS, £56, ALEXANDALEXA.COM
Join Woody, Buzz and friends in a whole new adventure as Toy Story 4 hits cinemas today. This muchanticipated instalment stars all your favourite characters – from Ham and Rex to Little Bo Peep – plus a few new faces.
Ever spotted the Seven Dials Sundial Pillar while strolling Covent Garden? Today, that iconic monument is celebrating its 30th birthday; to mark the occasion, there’ll be a fabulous free one-day festival in the centre, with live music, street food, theatre performances and craft sessions. sevendials.co.uk
Budding architects will have the chance to design their own London skyline at Open House Families free festival of architecture this weekend, where there’ll be over 40 hands-on activities to try. Led
There’s plenty to keep young ones amused at Bocketts Farm in Surrey, from enchanted trails and bubble discos to pony rides, goat milking and pig racing. We’re offering one family a fabulous £100 gift card prize, to be spent on entry tickets, food or souvenirs. Enter at littlelondonmagazine. co.uk/competitions good luck!
IN THE SWIM OF THINGS TOOTING BEC LIDO
At 90m long, this vast freshwater lido is the largest of its kind in Europe, which means it rarely feels overcrowded, even in the height of summer. You’ll also find a café, shaded areas and changing rooms, plus a children’s paddling pool. slsc.org.uk
Open from 25 May, this 50m pool has been a much-loved local landmark for over 80 years, surrounded by a café, a stunning Grade II listed building and Brockwell Park. The water is unheated, so it’s pretty cold, but if this summer is
anything like last year’s, you won’t be complaining about the temperature for long. fusion-lifestyle.com London Fields Lido
PARK ROAD LEISURE CENTRE
North Londoners will be familiar with this familyfriendly haven, with fun water features, diving areas and grassy slopes for picnicking. The lido is heated, and there’s an indoor pool for rainier days. fusion-lifestyle.com
Pig racing at Bocketts Farm
LONDON FIELDS LIDO
Open year round, this heated 50m swim space is surrounded by play areas and a smaller paddling pool, making it ideal for days out with little ones. Sadly, you can’t bring a picnic, but there are two cafés to choose from. better.org.uk
PHOTOGRAPHY: OLIVER DIXON; JAMES NORTH
Watch your little ones pick up a brand new skill at Richings Korean Martial Arts Club. Held at Westcott Reading Room in Dorking every Saturday, kids will be taught to kick, punch and block using bags and pads, developing their fitness levels as they learn to defend themselves. Email
Bupa Cromwell Hospital, helping to keep your kids up and running
At Skyline, our Children and Young Peopleâ€™s Department, we offer expert care in a calm and safe environment. Leading paediatric specialist consultants from Londonâ€™s top teaching hospitals Outpatient appointments available 6 days a week A wide range of specialties for children aged from 0-18 years Dedicated entrance and children-only ward Round-the-clock monitoring, when needed, for seriously ill children, by an onsite critical care consultant
To book an appointment, call 020 7244 4882 or email email@example.com bupacromwellhospital.com/skyline
Help relieve the symptoms of chickenpox with ViraSoothe ✔ Provides cooling relief to the skin
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✔ Available in a gel and spray For more information on this and other products in the Care range of family remedies visit www.allthecareyouneed.co.uk
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Helps break the itch, scratch infection cycle
Quickdry leather resists water absorption and retention and dries in just 20 minutes
Summer fun doesn’t have to be put on hold due to soggy shoes, thanks to the new range from Bobux: the Quickdry Collection. Available in Zap, Tidal and Tropicana styles, the full edit has been designed with vibrant colourways, nostalgic detailing and the brand’s unique fast-drying leather, so kids can cool off on a hot day and swing right back into the action. Quickdry Collection from £35, bobux.com
ARE YOU CHICKENPOX AWARE? Chickenpox can be unpleasant for your child, but there may be ways you can help them feel better. Do you know how to care for chickenpox at home? To find out more, visit chickenpoxaware.co.uk This is an MSD website with more information on chickenpox.
This advert has been written, produced and distributed by the pharmaceutical company MSD. Merck Sharp & Dohme Limited, Hertford Road, Hoddesdon, Hertfordshire, EN11 9BU Registered in England No. 820771 GB-VVX-00031
Date of preparation: March 2019
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INTERVIEW The Fogles like to make the most of living in London
Ben loves a walk along London’s South Bank
Richmond Park is a favourite weekend escape for the family
FOX IN SOCKS BY DR SEUSS, £6.99 WATERSTONES.COM
Marylebone Village is top of the shops for Ben
Childhood holidays always meant getting back to nature in Canada
Ben’s new book is inspired by his boyhood experiences of animals at his father’s vet surgery The Fogles love a trip to Bone Daddies for ramen and mochi
He met wife Marina while dog-walking in Hyde Park
My Little London
BEN FOGLE THE BROADCASTER, ADVENTURER AND WRITER OPENS UP ABOUT WHY HYDE PARK IS SO SPECIAL TO HIM, CHILDHOOD HOLIDAYS AND WHAT HIS KIDS THINK OF HIS LATEST BOOK Ben was more nervous about what his children would think of his new book than the critics
have within the M25?
Which London hotspots do you most look forward to visiting when you come back home from a trip?
Hyde Park. I love it there. It has great meaning for me, as it’s where Marina and I first met while we were walking our dogs. We planted a memorial tree for my late Labrador Inca there too. I love walking there in all seasons and I often swim in the Serpentine; there’s nothing like it. The children love feeding the green parakeets. And the best place to eat as a family?
INTERVIEW: EMMA O'DONOVAN. PHOTOGRAPHY: INSTAGRAM.COM/BENFOGLE; ISTOCK; SHUTTERSTOCK
There are so many places, but the Fogle family favourite – especially for Ludo and Iona – is Bone Daddies for its ramen soups, with mochi ice cream balls for pudding. To escape the rat race tell us about your favourite open space in London?
Apart from Hyde Park, we love a walk in all London’s green spaces. Richmond Park is great to escape to on the weekend. I also love walking along the Thames; the South Bank can be a pretty exciting place as there’s always lots going on. We try to make the most of living in the capital. You’ve just released the first in a new adventure fiction series: Mr Dog and the Rabbit Habit, what do your children think of your book?
There are too many to list: the climbing walls at the Westway, the hot tugs on the Regents Canal and The Rat Race is a great urban race. Which three places would you most recommend to a person who’d never visited the capital before? animal experiences, have you always been an animal lover?
I’ve always been passionate about animals. My father was – and still is – a vet, so my childhood was filled with animals of every kind. Often funny, absurd, endearing, but always remarkable, these creatures have provided me with all kinds of brilliant material. I can’t wait to share them with young readers everywhere. What are your favourite kids’ books?
I loved Dr Seuss and I still do. He was a genius. I don’t think anyone ever came close to him when it came to eccentricity and lyricism. I also loved Roald Dahl. He came and read from The BFG at my school when I was nine years old and I’ve never forgotten it. Tell us about the London bookshop you most enjoy visiting.
They love it. I was more nervous to hear their comments than any critic or reviewer for anything I’ve ever done, “best book I’ve ever read” was Ludos verdict, not that there was any bias or nepotism involved!
My absolute favourite is Lutyens & Rubinstein on Westbourne Park Road in Notting Hill. It’s such a beautiful little independent bookshop. I’ve launched most of my books there. I love supporting local indie businesses – it’s so easy to shop online, but I like to make an effort to buy from stores like this one to support the high street.
This book’s inspired by your real-life
What’s the biggest adventure you can
You must see London from the water. It’s such a unique perspective. So take a boat on the river. As London is famous for its parks. make sure you visit one of the royal parks and take a picnic. In fact, a friend of mine is trying to get London classified as the first urban national park in the world. Whatever else they do, they shouldn’t visit Oxford Street! Instead, explore Marylebone Village. It’s the city’s best shopping street. What’s your fondest childhood memory of school holidays?
Holidays in Canada. My dad is Canadian and we spent all of our holidays at a lake in Ontario. Fishing, swimming and camping. With home comforts in mind, do you have a go-to recipe or firm family favourite you enjoy cooking?
Pasta and pesto with some tomatoes. The family all love it. Where’ll your next adventure take you?
I’m off to Sweden for New Lives in the Wild. I love Scandinavia and can’t wait to take the family next winter. I’d rather like having my own island in the Arctic Circle! L Mr Dog and the Rabbit Habit is out now. £5.99, Published by Harper Collins.
Gaspard the Fox
On The Origin of the Species
The Lost Book of Adventure
BY ZEB SOANES AND JAMES MAYHEW
RETOLD BY SABINA RADEVA
A delightful urban adventure unfolds as Gaspard the fox skitters through the streets of London in search of supper in this exquisitely observed picture book.
Vintage illustrations adorn the pages of this lavish retelling of Darwin’s theory of evolution. A perfect introduction that’s both accessible and engaging.
Survival kits and compasses at the ready, you are about to step into the wild and embark on the adventure of a lifetime. A book to inspire and be relished by every child.
£7.99 • Graffeg
£12.99 • Puffin
£20 • Frances Lincoln
My First Book of Birds
The Incredible Ecosystems of Planet Earth
BY RACHEL IGNOTOFSKY
BY ZOË INGRAM
BY BEN ROTHERY
Budding ornithologists will delight in the array of birds residing in our gardens. From tiny wrens to magnificent magpies, this is a visual feast.
Brimming with fascinating facts, this guide to our world will excite budding adventurers young and old.
Breathtaking illustrations of some of the 180,000 varieties of butterfly are created in pencil in mind-boggling detail. Imaginations will be captured.
£12.99 • Walker Books
£12.99 • Wren & Rook Books
£20 • Ladybird
Kat Wolfe Takes the Case
Fanatical About Frogs
BY ROB HODGSON
BY OWEN DAVEY
BY LAUREN ST JOHN
Follow three cunning foxy stooges on their quest to find some tasty rabbits. This laugh-out-loud adventure is set to become a firm family favourite.
Utterly absorbing from start to finish, this collection of froggy facts will leave you totally full of wonder, and convinced that amphibians are awesome.
Seat-gripping adventure unfolds on the Jurassic coast as Kat discovers a rare ‘dragon’ dinosaur skeleton. Wholesome rip-roaring holiday fun for keen readers.
£11.99 • Frances Lincoln
£12.99 • Flying Eye Books
£6.99 • Macmillan
Sportopedia BY ADAM SKINNER AND MARK LONG
Want to get out and stretch those legs? This compendium of sports is sure to encourage sofa sloths and screen fiends to get up, get out and get active. £14.99 • Wide Eyed Editions
Poppy and Sam’s Magic Painting Book No mess, just heaps of farmyard fun with this delightful painting book featuring Poppy and Sam. Water and a paintbrush will reveal vibrant scenes.
ILLUSTRATION: SPORTOPEDIA, ADAM SKINNER AND MARK LONG
£5.99 • Usborne
We’re Going on a Bear Hunt Let’s Discover Flowers and Trees Packed with activities, stickers and nature-inspired crafts, this enchanting book is perfect for rainy days at home. £5.99 • Walker Books
The Great Outdoors EMMA O’DONOVAN ROUNDS UP THE BEST READS FOR LITTLE BOOKWORMS
GET THE LOOK
SEQUIN CROWN £25 FABLEHEART.COM
TAO&FRIENDS SWEAT PANTS £31 ALEXANDALEXA.COM
I N S TA I N S P O
@three.little.tinkers Mother of three LOUISE talks creative play, online inspiration and the things that spark her own imagination
SOFT TOY £75.99 JOHNLEWIS.COM
JOULES PRINT DRESS £40 ALEXANDALEXA.COM
ith nearly 25,000 followers on Instagram, illustrator and content creator Louise knows how to make the everyday seem magical, with her soft-focus snaps of family life.
BONTOY TRAVELLER £339 BONTOY.CO.KR
What inspires you?
So much! I am obsessively pinning things on Pinterest. Book quotes and poetry spark my imagination, and I’ll try to create a theme around something that my kids are doing and to bring their imaginations to life. Who do you like to follow on Instagram?
I love creative family accounts like @allthatisshe and @the_life_of_aviax and @ antheajanebiggs for her interiors and @lifewiththebusbys whose school-run stories make you fall in love with her! What do you enjoy most about the platform?
I love the creative outlet it gives me and the opportunity to work
from home. Instagram gave me a window into the outside world when I was stuck in bed for months. Many of the women I have met through it have become friends who I now see regularly for coffee and playdates – I’d be lost without them!
What advice would you give parents on being more creative with their kids?
Listen to your children, and if you’re struggling for inspiration, let them take the lead! What toys do your children love for creative play?
We have found some amazing brands on Instagram. My favourite is Fable Heart. What’s next for you? Any projects in the pipeline?
I have just signed on to a second year with Johnson’s, and have also started working with the Branded Content Marketing Association. I would really love to focus on my children’s illustrations and find a brand to collaborate with. L
S A F E F U N I N T H E S U N How can you choose clothes to help your children stay safe outside this summer? Enter Scandi children’s clothing brand, Reima, and its SunProof range
Reima’s SunProof clothes are not just skin saviours, they’re stylish additions to a child’s holiday wardrobe
GENUA DRESS A soft and comfortable dress that’s perfect after a swim or on the beach to keep the wind at bay. £34.95
arents often have a love-hate relationship with the sun. More sun means more time spent playing outside but it also means the slip, slap, slop of sunscreen and the worry of sunburn. All children need sunshine. It helps their bodies to make vitamin D – a vital supplement for stronger, healthier bones as they grow, and it gives their mental health a boost. But unprotected exposure to the sun can cause skin and eye damage. Reima is Finland’s leading activewear brand for children who love adventure and the great outdoors. The Reima SunProof clothing range has a UV factor of up to 50+, preventing 98 per cent of ultraviolet radiation.
AREN’T REGULAR CLOTHES PROTECTIVE ENOUGH? The UV protection factor of a normal white summer T-shirt can be as low as 5. Darker colours and dense fabrics protect more, but LITTLELONDONMAGAZINE.CO.UK
the only way to know for sure is to measure the protection level using a standard lab test. Not something parents have time to do!
LESS LOTION IN THE OCEAN With Reima’s SunProof range, no sun lotion needs to be added under their clothes, making beach life much easier. Its built-in sunblock won’t fade or wash out, meaning parents only need to add suncream to exposed skin. By reducing our use of lotion, we’re helping to protect coral reefs and other sea life too.
GALAPAGOS SWIM OVERALL Made from a quick-drying, breathable UV-safe material, this one piece keeps kids safe in the water. £44.95
HOW DOES IT WORK? The sun protection in Reima’s swimwear jersey is based on safe titanium dioxide (TiO2) that’s spun deep inside the fibres and won’t wear off, not even in the wash or the swimming pool. You can let your little ones enjoy the rays for longer; Reima’s SunProof collection has children – literally – covered. L reima.com 37
WAVEPOWER SHORTS Knee-length beach shorts for kids with UV protection and a quick-drying material. £29.95
THIS PAGE: SANTANA WEARS COTTON DRESS, £58, MILK & BISCUITS. VELCRO TRAINERS, £49, 10 IS AT SMALLABLE. RIGHT PAGE: MATTEO WEARS COTTON JUMPER, £57.50, WYNKEN. DENIM CULOTTES, £57.50, WYNKEN. LEATHER SANDALS, FROM £65, YOUNG SOLES. KALEB WEARS COTTON CARDIGAN, £102, THE ANIMAL OBSERVATORY AT ALEX AND ALEXA. COTTON TOP, £33, THE ANIMAL OBSERVATORY AT ALEX AND ALEXA. COTTON CULOTTES, £70, CARAMEL. LEATHER SANDALS, FROM £61, YOUNG SOLES. LINEN BOTANIK FABRIC, £34 PER METRE, GUDRUN SJÖDÉN.
Into th e
woods PHOTOGRAPHY: HELEN MARSDEN
STYLING: YVADNEY DAVIS
THIS PAGE: SANTANA WEARS COTTON TOP, £50, TOCOTO VINTAGE AT SMALLABLE. SKIRT, £53, BEAU LOVES. SANDALS, FROM £66, STEP2WO. ORGANIC COTTON FABRIC, £20 PER METRE, GUDRUN SJÖDÉN. RIGHT PAGE: ANASTASIA WEARS FABRIC HEADBAND, £20.50, MERI MERI. RAINCOAT, FROM £79, PETIT BATEAU. COTTON DRESS, FROM £20, NEXT. SANDALS, FROM £7, NEXT.
THIS PAGE: MATTEO WEARS COTTON TOP, FROM £39, PETIT BATEAU. DENIM DUNGAREES, 87, LOUIS LOUISE. JACQUARD COTTON CARDIGAN, £67, BEAU LOVES. LEATHER SANDALS, FROM £66, YOUNG SOLES. BOTANIK FABRIC, £34 PER METRE, GUDRUN SJÖDÉN. RIGHT PAGE: SANTANA WEARS ORGANIC COTTON JUMPER, £76, STELLA MCCARTNEY. COTTON SHORTS, £35, OUTSIDE THE LINES. LEATHER SANDALS, FROM £61, YOUNG SOLES. KALEB WEARS COTTON-MIX T-SHIRT, £44, SIMPLE TEES AT SMALLABLE. COTTON SHORTS, $48, OEUF NYC. LEATHER SANDALS, FROM £61, YOUNG SOLES.
THIS PAGE: SANTANA WEARS NYLON SWIMSUIT, £56, OEUF NYC. DENIM SHORTS, £35, WYNKEN. SHOES, FROM £7, NEXT. BUTTERFLY WINGS, £9.46, MILANOO. LINEN FABRIC, GUDRUN SJÖDÉN. RIGHT PAGE: ANASTASIA WEARS COTTON-MIX DRESS, £123, STELLA MCCARTNEY. LEATHER SANDALS, FROM £61, YOUNG SOLES. HAIR SLIDES, £7.50, MERI MERI.
With thanks to: Models: Anastasia, Kaleb, Matteo, and Santana. Model agency: Bruce and Brown. Location: Richmond Park. Photographerâ€™s assistant: Tilly Nelson. Makeup and Hair Grooming: Firyal Arneil using Maria Nila (marianila.com). Art Director: ChloĂŤ Collyer
N AT U R E ’ S WAY Raising a child and respecting the environment don’t have to be mutually exclusive. For equal doses of style and ethical substance, these brands have got it nailed
The high street isn’t always the easiest place to find sustainable clothing, but thanks to labels such as Newbie, that’s changing. With stores across the capital, the Swedish brand offers clothing and accessories at purse-friendly prices. Timeless styles with a modern twist, its collections from season to season are designed to coordinate with colour palettes inspired by nature, meaning last year’s dress can be paired with this year’s leggings, slowing down the fast-fashion cycle and our need to buy more. Sustainable solutions are chosen in every aspect of production, from how the cotton is grown (it’s always organic) to better conditions for its workers. newbiestore.com
Newbie's colour palettes are inspired by nature, meaning that it's easy to mix old and new pieces 46
Veja’s trainers are made from everything from recycled plastic bottles to Amazonian wild rubber
Claudia Carvalho combined her experience as a graphic designer with her family’s background in textile manufacturing – as well as her own new-found motherhood – to launch Piupia back in 2013, creating clothing characterised by rich colours, playful illustrated prints and simple shapes. Everything is produced in Portugal using locally-made materials and kind-to-theenvironment processes that won’t aggravate sensitive skin, with each and every product Oeko-Tex 100 certified – a criterion in the textile industry ensuring no potentially harmful chemicals have been used in manufacture. Claudia’s passionate about maintaining a low carbon footprint, too; new collections are created using leftover or in-stock fabrics. piupia.co.uk
Founded in 2004, Veja’s ethical practices have been implemented from the start, with trainers made from organic cotton, wild rubber from the Amazon, recycled plastic bottles and vegetable-tanned leather. From beginning to end, it costs up to seven times more to make a Veja trainer than other leading brands but, in other good news, the inflated price isn’t passed on to the consumer, thanks to the elimination of marketing costs. The eight styles that make up the kids’ collection look just as good as the ethics behind them; choose from a range of bright designs featuring metallics, suede, and eye-catching prints. veja-store.com
Women’s knitwear designer Lisa Roberts had always envisioned her designs in miniature, but it wasn’t until the birth of her second child, Otto, in 2016, that Mabli really came to life. Taking inspiration from Welsh tapestry blankets, these clothes are designed with longevity in mind, with versatile fits meaning that they can be worn for longer, before being passed on. From tops and bottoms to accessories and blankets, everything’s made from natural, sustainable fibres such as organic pima cotton, extra-fine merino and linen. Sizes range from baby up to age 12. mabli.co.uk
Launching its debut collection this spring, Anyware is the brainchild of singer Jessie Ware and designer George Reddings – who previously masterminded Mothercare’s Little Bird by Jools Oliver collection. The clothing is made to quite literally grow with your child, with oversized, boxy shapes and clever design features such as adjustable straps and rollup cuffs, allowing little ones to get more wear out of every piece. The comfortable collection’s sizing is based on height rather than age, and the pieces aren’t divided into genders either – instead, everything’s designed to be shared amongst siblings, cousins and friends, with bold colours that work for every child. anywarekids.com
These charming, one-of-a-kind Eric & Albert's Crafts piggies have a low carbon footprint
The charming products from Scandi brand Fabelab are designed to spark your child’s imagination at each stage of their development, becoming a storied part of their play universe for years to come. Upcycling and reusability are some of its core principles, with many items intentionally designed to have dual purpose – its first ever product was a quilted baby blanket that folds up to become a swan. Cotton is always GOTScertified organic, and paper packaging can be reused for crafting – its online Mini Makers initiative offers up various interactive projects that kids will love, from dolls houses to a toy camera. fabelab.dk
Husband-and-wife duo Martin and Rebecca run Eric & Albert’s Crafts from their family home in the Kent countryside. The crafty pair were inspired to turn their hobby into a living after welcoming their son, Dylan – now chief toy-tester – and wanting his toys to have a low carbon footprint. The wooden toys – split into specific animal collections such as farm, woodland and ocean – are hand-cut from British FSC-certified wood, before being individually painted with all-natural, plantbased stains. This handmade nature means each toy has its own individual characteristics, with the tactile wood grain a visible feature on each creation. ericandalbertscrafts.com 48
WORDS: ANNIE QUINTON
ERIC & ALBERT’S CRAFTS
When homework is a
Reading, writing and spelling are challenges all children can fınd daunting but for a child with dyslexia it can feel like an insurmountable mountain. Dyslexia Decoded is an innovative new programme of workshops, where parents of dyslexic children can learn to support their child through understanding both their strengths and challenges.
UPCOMING COURSES IN JUNE: 10th June − Senior (Age 9 -12) 18th June − Junior (Age 6 -8)
The Ampersand Hotel
10 Harrington Road, London SW7 3ER
To book a course visit www.dyslexiadecoded.co.uk WORKSHOPS DYSLEXIA ASSESSMENTS PRIVATE SPECIALIST TUTORING
Keira and her musician husband James, who married in 2013, try to avoid the spotlight
Knightley does it
SHE IS A STRONG WOMAN WHO HAS FORGED A CAREER PLAYING STRONG CHARACTERS, AND SO IT FOLLOWS THAT ACTRESS KEIRA KNIGHTLEY SHOULD WANT TO RAISE HER CHILD BY EMBRACING THE SAME SETS OF VALUES, SAYS SIMONE LEE
“There is always a conversation about the type of media Edie consumes,” says Knightley, “and actually I think that’s something that goes on everywhere, so I’m not alone. “We all want to give our children positive influences to draw upon. The good stuff isn’t restricted to just Disney, and nor is the bad, but the reason I raised those characters was as a starting point to highlight how open our children are these days to everything that’s going on in the world. Their connectivity is something no current parent experienced as a child, so in that sense we are all learning at the same time. What I’m saying is we have to be careful.” As for Edie’s dad, Knightley’s husband, 35-year-old James Righton, is similarly onboard with modern parenting, albeit the former Klaxons keyboardist and vocalist appears happier to remain in the background. He rarely interacts on social media, has released one solitary album in five Keira is keen to shield Edie from years (although he did contribute heavily to certain media Simon Amstell’s recent Benjamin project), and appears every bit the doting father who relishes childhood duties, while his illustrious wife is away on film commitments. “I am lucky to have James and an incredible support network around me,” says Knightley. “Our lives have both changed immeasurably – it is a profound shift, at times as terrifying as it
lthough spontaneity and quirky brilliance have been staples of Keira Knightley’s work as an actress, her success has also been facilitated by a few basic skills that have also proven handy in parenting. “Repetition of lines in scripts, and then again on the film set, provided very good practice for a lot of what bringing up a child involves,” Keira begins, with a resigned nod. “Certainly at the start there is no way around doing the same things again and again… feed, change nappy, sleep, repeat...” While the early days of raising a child might have led Knightley to believe she was starring in a remake of Groundhog Day, the second part of the process has been more relaxed, with daughter Edie blossoming into a perfect princess, befitting the showbiz world she has involuntarily entered. There has been some controversy along the way – towards the end of 2018, Knightley courted headlines by admitting she won’t allow her daughter to watch certain Disney classics because of the negative perceptions they attach to certain female characters. Knightley suggested Cinderella was a poor role model for a girl in the sense of waiting around to be rescued by a rich guy, while The Little Mermaid promoted the notion that a female voice should be given up for that of a man. LITTLELONDONMAGAZINE.CO.UK
A true global export, last year Keira was awarded an OBE for her services to drama
is rewarding. “I wouldn’t say it is a new life; more a new experience of life, if that makes sense. And I think everyone who has children goes on to see things from a different perspective.” The family live in an elegant Islington townhouse, and Knightley has gradually moved away from a staunch position on privacy whereby even her daughter’s name wasn’t revealed until three months after her arrival in August 2015. “I think there is a real process at first that means you have to do everything at your own speed,” she says. “In those days, weeks and months after birth there is lots of recovery, not least when it comes to your own body. You are proud, relieved, healing, and yet there is a new challenge at every corner – it is tough.” For such a global export, the press attention was never going to go away, and Knightley has seen fan worship of her lead to ‘fake’ Twitter accounts being set up for her whole family, her daughter included. Regardless, the 34-year-old is forging ahead with new film projects, which, thankfully, are offering up some variety in their subject matter. “There was a period where the only thing I was being sent were scripts about losing babies,” she says. “It seemed to be the only thing I received – there were about four scripts in a row just after I’d had a child; it was very strange!” Referencing one of those scripts – for the new movie The Aftermath, in which her character Rachael Morgan is forced to confront the profound lows of loss – Knightley says she doesn’t see
Anything is possible for Edie. For me, it was impossible not to be swept away by the theatre environment being a parent as necessary criteria for playing someone dealing with that sort of grief. “We are dealing with a woman who has lost her child – that is absolutely unthinkable and the worst thing that any parent can imagine, but I wouldn’t go along with the idea that anybody who doesn’t have a child couldn’t play that part. If you have loved, then you understand the idea of loss. “What I would say is that your feelings and attitudes towards children certainly change after you have given birth. You understand the loss of a child would be like losing an arm. I’m certain having a child will affect my Keira and James acting in future and share a similar parenting style inform the types of roles I choose to take.” The Aftermath, which was released at the start of March, is the latest film to highlight Knightley’s versatility. 52
“Edie is my world, but I am still an actress and I still need to work – the challenge now is finding the right split and embracing everything else in between. I think that’s a good challenge to have.” Knightley was raised in a theatrical world. Her dad was an actor, her mum a playwright who also performed, and you sense, given both her parents have ‘owned the stage’, that Edie will possess a creative spirit too. “My parents never tried to control me, and because of that I felt an enormous sense of freedom. I was raised to value independence and to learn to make my own way. “Anything is possible for Edie. For me, it was impossible not to be swept away by that creative theatre environment. I remember doing my homework backstage while my dad was rehearsing and it felt so wonderful to be there. I became enthralled by the stage – and how it becomes your little world – and developed a deep appreciation for the arts, so of course I’d love to pass that on.” L LITTLELONDONMAGAZINE.CO.UK
PHOTOGRAPHY: ALAMY/BYRON PURVIS/ADMEDIA VIA ZUMA WIRE; REX IMAGES/STARTRAKS/SHUTTERSTOCK; REX IMAGES/D APPLEBY/20TH CENTURY FOX/ KOBAL/SHUTTERSTOCK; REX IMAGES/JULIAN SIMMONDS/SHUTTERSTOCK; SPLASHNEWS.COM
Keira plays a grieving mother in The Aftermath
CALLING ALL BRANDS! Our hugely popular awards are back
PHOTOGRAPHY: LOL JOHNSON
The awards are hosted by Baby magazine, and incorporate the Little London Awards
BabyAwards.co.uk ENTER ONLINE NOW
NOMINATIONS CLOSE 2 JUNE
baby-magazine.co.uk | 53
Avocado provides good fat and stabilises the sugar from the dates
Blueberry and Avocado Creamsicles By Little Green Kitchen Makes 10 creamsicles • Active preparation: 15 minutes • Start to finish: 8 hours
These lovely ‘creamsicles’ are basically made of a thick smoothie that you freeze. They’re ideal on warm summer days (and cold winter nights). You can vary them endlessly by adding your favourite fruit or berries; just remember only to use a little liquid and to add avocado to get that creaminess which differentiates them from ice lollies. We like to push nut butter in the middle of these as a rich and delicate surprise, but this step is entirely optional. We found our popsicle moulds on Amazon, but if you don’t have any, small paper cups and popsicle sticks or teaspoons inserted in the middle work just fine. Simply tear off the paper when you want to eat them. INGREDIENTS • 2 avocados, stones removed and flesh scooped out • 200g frozen blueberries • 10 soft dates, pitted • 250ml milk • 2 tbsp lime juice • 150g nut butter (optional) METHOD Put all of the ingredients, except the nut butter, in a blender and mix until completely smooth. Divide the smoothie between 10 popsicle moulds and top each one with a tablespoon of the nut butter (if using). Cover with the lid, insert the popsicle sticks, pushing the nut butter into the middle of the mould, and transfer to the freezer for 8 hours, or until frozen. LITTLE GREEN KITCHEN: Simple vegetarian family recipes by David Frenkiel and Luise Vindahl is available now (Hardie Grant, £20)
Look the par t…
1. LEATHER SANDALS FROM £40 SALT-WATERSANDALS.COM 2. COTTON DUNGAREES FROM £26 BODEN.COM 3. UV50+ RASH VEST ¤39.95 MOLO.COM 4. BARTS AL STRAW HAT £27 SELFRIDGES.COM 5. MINI MELISSA BACKPACK £75 CHILDRENSALON.COM 6. UPF 50 SWIM SHORTS £22 LANDSEND.CO.UK
ENGEL BAMBOO BOWL SET £36 KIDLY.CO.UK CHILDREN’S CHAIR £12 IKEA.COM
FERM LIVING TENT £95.95 SCANDIBORN.CO.UK
PARTIES PIÑATA £12.99 PARTYPIECES.CO.UK
PA R T Y T I M E W I T H
101 Things for Kids to do Outside
This book is packed with games, crafts and gardening inspiration! £14.99, amazon.co.uk
OUTDOORS As the weather warms up, what better excuse to throw an ‘al fresco style’ summer party
MEGA HI-TOWER This 3ft-high version of the popular tumbling tower game will put patience to the test! £65, nationaltrust.org.uk
WOODEN QUOITS Get into teams, or go solo, and try your hand at a classic game of quoits. £14, hawkin.com
GIANT BUBBLE WAND £0.99 PARTYPIECES.CO.UK
WHETHER IT’S A BIRTHDAY PARTY, AN END OF SCHOOL CELEBRATION or just a chance to catch up with friends and family over the summer months, nothing quite beats a laidback celebration in the garden – weather permitting, of course! Think about your theme. You may want to keep it traditional with bunting, seasonal flowers and a relaxed tea party spread, or you might want to give your party a cool glamping twist with a few floor cushions, picnic rugs, balloons and cotton teepees to provide shade for the little ones. If you’re having a large number of guests, a summer fête-inspired set-up is a great way to entertain the masses. Get the older children to make banners and homemade cupcakes, and set up various ‘stalls’ with games like hoopla, giant chess or Jenga, and maybe even a vintage ice cream cart or bouncy castle.
BAMBOO SPOON AND FORK £3.50 YOURSSUSTAINABLY.COM
HESSIAN TABLE RUNNER £8.99 PARTYPIECES.CO.UK
KILNER DISPENSER £16.99 PARTYPIECES.CO.UK
CUSHIONS £6 EACH IKEA.COM
Hosting a party in the garden is a great excuse for kids to get messy without having to worry about paint on your walls or glue on the tables! Why not set up an arts and crafts station with finger painting or modelling clay? Children adore having their faces painted too, so if you’re feeling creative, and can tear yourself away from the tea party, this is bound to go down a treat and is perfect for photo opportunities. Keep young children hydrated throughout the day by having plenty of water on tap – fill a Kilner water dispenser with fresh lemon, mint or cucumber. Finally, the bonus of this kind of party is that you can pre-prepare a range of simple and fresh food for guests to pick at throughout the day. Try a selection of finger food, or big bowls of pasta and colourful salads for friends and family to tuck into. L
10M BUNTING £2.99 PARTYPIECES.CO.UK
ENGEL BAMBOO CUP SET £22 KIDLY.CO.UK
YO U R Wearing a helmet and keeping arms and legs covered is crucial hen first learnin to ride
NATALIE KEELER INVESTIGATES THE RITE OF PASSAGE THAT IS LEARNING TO CYCLE WITHOUT STABILISERS ESSENTIAL CYCLE GEAR
2 IN 1 BALANCE BIKE £110 MICRO-SCOOTERS.CO.UK
Children often feel more confident on balance bikes
was four years old when I got my first bike – it was bright pink, sparkly, and had silver tassels attached to the handlebars – and like most kids my age, I would ride around on it constantly. Whether it was whizzing around in the park with my friends or speeding down the local cycling track with my dad, being on my bike gave me the most freedom I’d ever had, and I loved the feeling of the wind rushing against my face as I pedalled at full speed. Of course it wasn’t always this easy, and unlike my younger brother – who appeared to just jump on his bike without stabilisers one day and ride it – it took me much longer to grasp pedalling without that safety net to help me balance. There didn’t seem to be a onemethod-fits-all solution, and it was only once I’d accomplished it that I realised the process is essentially different for everyone. The trick, says Julie Rand from Cycling UK, is to practise in short bursts: “Learning how to ride a bike is a rite of passage for many children, so you should always make
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sure they’re having fun,” she advises. “Ensure practice sessions aren’t too lengthy – around half an hour each time is enough – and try not to overdo it if your child is feeling tired. Otherwise you may risk putting them off cycling forever!” As one of the hurdles that most children struggle with, balance is a key aspect that parents can nail down from an early age, explains Anna Gibson, co-founder of Micro Scooters UK. Balance bikes are a great starting point for little ones as young as two years old, as they help them to explore the correct balance point as they build up their core strength and stability. “There’s already so much for them to think about – steering, pedalling, braking – and then you throw balancing into the mix and it can be quite overwhelming,” she says. “With both feet on the ground, children feel immediately more confident on a balance bike. They gain a sense of being in control and are more likely to push themselves, choosing a direction and speed that suits them; safe 57
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• Encourage your child to use a balance bike from the age of two, so they can learn how to keep upright as they move along. Set challenges and play games to help improve their balance, coordination and ability to judge distances.
• When they’re ready for a bike with pedals, choose a level area with lots of open space, so they don’t accidentally run into anything.
• Think about the language you’re using – be positive and patient, and understand that they may not grasp it right away.
• Hold onto the saddle of the bike rather than the handlebars, to encourage children to take control of steering.
• Once they’re confident enough to cycle
Learning to ride a bike is a rite of passage for children, so make sure they have fun in the knowledge that they can put their feet down at any time.” An added benefit of balance bikes is that they grow with your child, adds Anna. “The Micro Balance Bike has a fully adjustable handlebar and seat, ensuring the best possible fit for your little one.” Its two-in-one bike even has an extra stability wheel attachment, so children feel secure as they learn to master their balancing skills. “This allows them to ride at their own pace, and once they feel ready, the stabilising wheel can be replaced with a standard one, leaving you with a traditional toddler bike.” Once you think your child is confident enough to use pedals, check the bike is still suitable for their height before doing anything else, says Julie. “Have them squeeze the brakes together to hold it steady, then swing their leg over the saddle. They should be able to reach and use the brakes easily and place their feet comfortably on the ground, but you
can always adjust the saddle if you need to.” It may be tempting to practise on a soft surface like grass, but doing so can actually hinder the learning process, she advises. “They’ll have to push quite hard on the pedals, which makes it more difficult and harder to build up speed.” Instead, look for a hard, level surface that’s free from traffic, parked vehicles and too many pedestrians. Any concerns they have about grazing their arms or legs can easily be fi xed by dressing them in long trousers like tracksuit bottoms, shirts with sleeves, and cycling mitts or gloves – and, of course, wearing a helmet is essential. Now your child is on the bike and raring to go, they should start by looking straight ahead, letting go of the brakes and beginning to ‘scoot’, using their feet to push themselves along. Encourage them to lift their feet off the ground as much as possible, keeping their fingers on the brakes so they can stop 58
whenever they need to. When they’re able to travel some distance, they’re ready to start learning to pedal. “Hold the back of the saddle and tell them to put one of the pedals – it doesn’t matter which – into the ‘two o’clock position’, planting their other foot firmly on the ground,” says Julie. “Once they can push off and then lift their other foot onto the pedal without looking down, they can start pedalling forwards.” And as soon as they can balance, steer, stop and pedal without trouble? Now comes the magic moment when you can finally let go. “Just give them a small push on the back of the saddle, to give them a bit of momentum and help with balance,” Julie adds. “And encourage them to always look where they want to go, rather than at the ground.” Learning to cycle without stabilisers can be a pretty arduous process for many children, but the crucial thing to remember is that no matter how successful they’ve been, every teaching session should finish on a high. “Small steps will aid progress and build confidence, so don’t worry if they don’t ‘get it’ straight away,” says Julie. “Cycling is a lifelong skill, so they should simply try to practise at their own pace.” And of course, it is true what they say – once they’ve learnt, they’ll never forget... L LITTLELONDONMAGAZINE.CO.UK
unaided, give them a gentle push and let go!
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THE U LT I M AT E LONDON BUCKET LIST From historic museums to iconic toy shops, these are the top five spots in the capital you simply MUST visit
Kentish Town City Farm
If you’re longing for a taste of the countryside now summer’s arrived, London’s city farms are treasure troves of green space and super-cute animals. Catch the Overground to Gospel Oak and head to Kentish Town City Farm, where you’ll discover heaps of weekend workshops and term-time activities, from pottery clubs to cookery lessons and garden hunts. While the four-acre site isn’t the capital’s most verdant farmyard space,
its kid-friendly offerings are by far the best, and during their visit little ones can meet sheep, goats, ducks, chickens, geese, horses, pigs and even a cow. Open all year round, young pony-lovers should check out the farm’s weekend horse-riding programme, too. Entry is free. ktcityfarm.org.uk
The National Gallery
Kentish Town City Farm
The National Gallery
This iconic art museum might not be the first place you’d consider for a child’s day out, but the National Gallery is in fact teeming with kid-friendly workshops and activities; even the Duchess of Cambridge revealed that she plans to take George here for a special outing. Upon arrival at this Trafalgar
Square attraction, families can choose from three fun audio tours – Art Detectives, which sees you investigate strange gallery goings-on, is particularly great. Little ones can even have a go at recreating masterpieces as they go – just collect pencils and paper at the entrance. Don’t miss the free Magic Carpet Storytelling sessions for underfives on Sundays, where tots can learn about famous artworks in imaginative ways. Entry is free. nationalgallery.org.uk
Emirates Air Line
You might have already ticked the London Eye, the Sky Garden and Tower Bridge off your list, but did you know there’s an even cooler way to see the capital from above? Great for thrill-seeking tots, Emirates Air Line is a unique experience that sees you travel across the Thames in a 10-person cable car. Take a round trip or hop off once you reach the other end; there’s plenty of attractions to explore on both sides of the river, not to mention heaps of restaurant options. Little ones will love seeking out landmarks they recognise, too – the Shard, Canary Wharf and the ArcelorMittal Orbit at the Olympic Park are all visible from here. Avoid weekends and holidays if you can, plus peak times (7am to 9am) when the cars travel twice as fast. Terminals are based at Greenwich Peninsula and the Royal Docks; simply book online or save up to 25 per cent with an Oyster card or contactless payment. Extra bonus: under-fives go free! Adults, from £3.50; children, from £1.70; emiratesairline.co.uk
WORDS: NATALIE KEELER. PHOTOGRAPHY: TRUSTEES OF THE NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM
See the city's iconic skyline from up high with a ride on the thrilling Emirates Air Line
The Natural History Museum
Hitting up South Ken during the hols? If it’s museums you’re after, you’re in luck. The Natural History Museum is home to 80m extraordinary items, with diverse exhibitions and activities on offer throughout the year. Must-sees include
the earthquake simulator, Red Zone galleries, the Investigate Science centre and, of course, terrifyingly life-like dinosaurs. Summer will also see a plethora of pop-ups, but be prepared for crowds – try to visit on termtime weekday mornings if you have pre-school-aged children. And don’t forget to look up when you’re in Hintze Hall: a spectacular 25-metre-long blue whale skeleton is suspended from the ceiling. Entry is free. nhm.ac.uk
Situated on buzzing Regent’s Street, you’d be lucky to be spend less than an hour inside this historic toy shop, which has been in business for more than 250 years. Inside you’ll find 50,000-plus products on sale across seven floors, from plush toys and cool gadgets to classic games and collector’s items. But,
The Natural History Museum
of course, this is more than just a toy shop; kids can expect magic shows, theatre performances, toy demos, LEGO experiences, and seasonal events. A huge draw for tourists, you’re best off visiting on Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday mornings. Bring along your inner child and you’ll feel right at home! Entry is free. hamleys.com L
Remember to pack plenty of healthy snacks, such as fruit and nuts, to tide your kids over between meals
ROCKING OUT JO CAIRD PROVIDES A GUIDE TO FESTIVAL-GOING EN FAMILLE
amily-friendly music festivals offer the chance to hang out with your kids in a totally different way than you do at home, throwing routine out of the window and taking the days as they come. Whether your little one is a toddler or a too-cool-for-school tween, a festival’s a mostly very safe, contained, outdoorsy environment with thousands of exciting new sights, sounds, tastes and smells to experience. Your kids will love it and you’ll have a great time experiencing this new world with them. Of course, being at a music festival with a child is a very different experience from doing it with a group of pals. There might be times where you wish you’d left your little one at home altogether! But with a bit of pre-planning and a willingness to go with the
flow, the good far outweighs the bad. Here’s how to guarantee fest success…
WHAT TO PACK These days you can buy almost anything at a festival, so it’s not the end of the world if you forget something essential. But in an ideal world, on top of all the usual grownup festival essentials, you’ll need good quality ear defenders to protect your little one’s hearing (look for an SNR value of around 26db), a wipe-clean picnic blanket with a waterproof backing so you’ve always got somewhere for a sit down, and a non-toxic permanent marker for writing your phone number on your children in case they wander off. Though good quality food is available at most festivals, healthy snacks can be hard 62
to find. So save yourself the stress – and a fortune – by packing plentiful supplies of fresh fruit, nuts, cereal bars and anything else you know you can rely on to stop little tummies rumbling between meals.
GETTING AROUND An off-road pushchair is essential kit if you’re doing a festival with a toddler (and don’t forget a bicycle pump and puncture repair kit if your pushchair has pneumatic tyres). For older kids, a pull-along cart serves the same purpose, providing both a place to sit down and somewhere to stow the inevitable quantities of gear you’ll be lugging around with you. Pop a sleeping bag in when you head out for the evening and the cart becomes a bed, saving you from having to return to the LITTLELONDONMAGAZINE.CO.UK
TOP FIVE FAMILY-FRIENDLY FESTIVALS Forget about routines and embrace the great outdoors by introducing your children to festival fun
Bearded Theory, Derbyshire, 23-26 May
This independent music festival goes above and beyond when it comes to kids, even persuading your child’s headteacher to authorise a weekday absence, if you’ve signed them up for Bearded Theory School. Enrolment has closed for 2019, but your child can still access the fun – you just need to accompany them. beardedtheory.co.uk Latitude, Suffolk, 18-21 July
In keeping with the cross-cultural bent of the festival, the kids’ area has plenty in the Hire a tent that’s big enough for your little ones to play in while you’re getting ready for the day
way of theatre and performance for young children, while older kids will enjoy performances from respected names including Sadler’s Wells. The family camping has a secondary kids area, and there’s even a lake for swimming. latitudefestival.com WOMAD, Wiltshire, 25-28 July
13-and-unders are free at this iconic gathering of world-music artists and fans. There’s a dedicated kids area, but what makes WOMAD so appealing for families is that children feel included across the festival. Don’t miss the Arboretum, a beautiful shady forest zone you can explore with the little ones. womad.co.uk Just So, Cheshire, 16-18 August
Of the many festivals out there designed for families specifically, this one’s hard to beat. Live music is just a small
tent when your little one is ready for bed.
CAMPING When it comes to festival camping, more than any other camping trip, a campervan is your friend: quieter, warmer, more secure, easier to keep tidy and better for making a quick getaway if you need to. If I didn’t own one, I’d seriously consider hiring one for festivals. If you’re going down the tent route, buy or hire the largest model you can afford, particularly if your kids are little – it pays to have somewhere they can play while you’re getting ready to set out for the day. A tent with a separate interior room means you can sleep separately from your child, and a blackout tent is an ideal solution for little ones (or their parents!) who are sensitive to light. LITTLELONDONMAGAZINE.CO.UK
Latitude has activities for children of all ages
element in the mix of innovative kids’ activities and performances, including a ‘tribal tournament’ where you compete with other families in costume. justsofestival.org.uk Big Feastival, Cotswolds, 23-25 August
Big Feastival takes place on the Cotswolds farm of former Blur bassistturned-cheesemaker Alex James and features the likes of Jess Glynne and Elbow. You might get more out of the foodie focus than your children, but kiddie acts like Peppa Pig and Paw Patrol will have them squealing with delight. thebigfeastival.com
A blackout tent is an ideal solution for little ones (or parents!) who are sensitive to light A lot of festival camp sites will feel safe enough to leave your buggy or pull-along cart outside at night, but you won’t know that until you get there, so make sure your tent has enough room to bring your transport inside (and bring a piece of tarpaulin to put it on so you don’t get the rest of the tent grubby). Don’t bother with suitcases and pillows. Designate a different colour pillowcase for each family member and use them to pack clothes into instead. Then cram all your 63
pillow-suitcases into a black bin bag so they don’t get grubby in transit or when setting up camp. Even if your child’s toilet training days are far behind her, it’s a good idea to bring a travel potty and some biodegradable potty liners. Far preferable to a long walk to the loos in the middle of the night if she wakes up needing a wee, and potentially useful in the day time too if your little one finds festival toilets intimidating. L
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Stylish updates and inspiring finds to make your house a home
GREAT DANES Danish brand byKlipKlap – known for its multifunctional family furniture – has arrived in the UK via online retailer Mamatot. The brand’s convertible play mattress transforms from a sofa into a guest bed, and then into a tumbling mat or tunnel for playtime. Its iconic kids’ chair has an ergonomic design and offers little ones a perfect place to cosy up with a book. From £195, mamatot.co.uk
Red Candy's animal shelves will bring a wild element to storytime
ANIMAL COMFORTS Sophie Allport has extended its range of country-inspired homewares to the bedroom with its first collection of bed linen. Duvets, cushions and throws are adorned with the brand’s best-selling prints of dogs, bees, hares, flamingos and safari animals. There are four duvet sizes to choose from. Sets from £25, sophieallport.com
To mark half a century since the iconic moon landings, Rex London is celebrating all things astronomical with a special home collection. The retro designs include dining sets and wall charts and clocks, as well as stationery and activities. rexlondon.com
OUT OF AFRICA Spark imaginations with Red Candy’s animal-inspired wooden bookcases. A zebra, lion, giraffe and unicorn have been transformed into childsized units perfect for storing books and favourite toys, with a tabletop space for tackling homework. £124, redcandy.co.uk
LEONORA BAMFORD AND NANNY ANITA SHARE THEIR FAVOURITE SUMMER ACTIVITIES AND DAYS OUT
t’s light outside, I’ve pushed my thick jumpers to the back of my wardrobe and I’ve started walking with a spring in my step: I love summer! I spend as much time as possible outside playing games with the children and going on long walks with the dogs. This time last year, we found a lake with a fallen tree near our home. I promised the children we would rig up a rope so they could swing like Tarzan into the water, something I spent hours doing as a child. Earlier this year, I gave the kids a plot of soil each to plant what they liked, the older ones went with sunflowers and some lettuce. My youngest created a masterpiece of wildflower, radish, carrot and sweet peas. I’d forgotten how easy it is to grow things even with the smallest pot and urge anyone to have a go. L
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DIY BEE HOTEL You’ll need: • Bamboo • plastic pot • secateurs • twine Method: • Cut your bamboo down so that it fits in your pot. Cut enough to fill the pot completely. • Tie some twine around the bamboo to secure it together. • Place the bamboo bundle back in the pot. • Set up the completed bee hotel in your garden, in a spot that gets plenty sunlight.
QUEEN ELIZABETH OLYMPIC PARK I’m so excited to finally be taking the children to the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in the holidays. The ArcelorMittal Orbit ride looks absolutely incredible, and the Aqua Splash inflatable sessions look like great fun. queenelizabetholympicpark.co.uk
DAYLESFORD BROADBEAN DIP You’ll need: • 250g peas • 250g podded broad beans • 2 tbsp fresh mint, chopped • 3 tbsp fresh chives, finely chopped • 2 handfuls peashoots • 50g butter • sea salt and black pepper
PHOTOGRAPHY: HELENE SANDBER; SHUTTERSTOCK
Method: • Have a bowl of iced water ready. • Half-fill a large saucepan with water and bring to the boil. Add the peas first if fresh, and cook for about 5 minutes, adding the beans for the last 30 seconds. If the peas are frozen, you can put both these and the beans
in together and bring back to the boil, then take off the heat after 30 seconds. Drain in a colander, then transfer to the bowl of iced water and leave for 5 minutes. Drain well again and slip the skins off the broad beans. • Transfer the peas and beans to a bowl and crush with the back of a fork. Next, add the herbs and pea shoots and stir well. • Melt the butter in a large non-stick pan. Add the crushed bean and pea mixture and heat gently, stirring regularly, until warmed through. • Season and serve.
HIDE AND SEEK You’ll need: • Face paints • craft sticks Method: • Cover the end of your craft sticks in face paint. You’ll want a couple of sticks per colour. • Hide the craft sticks. You can either hide the same colour together or each one separately. • Each child has to find one stick of each colour and wipe it across the back of their hand or face.
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BOTTLE UP Liven up your little one’s lunchbox with these colourful creations from Klean Kanteen. Featuring a range of playful graphics – from dragons and unicorns to sharks and fairies – and available in eight different shades, these eco-friendly bottles can withstand just about anything your child puts them through, thanks to their strong stainless steel exterior and chip-resistant finish. And with its spill-proof sippy cap and swing-away metal loop, it can be easily attached to your stroller or bag, too. From £16.95, kleankanteen.co.uk
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The latest and greatest foodie finds for your mini diners
RED ALERT Lots of us love dolloping ketchup on our dinner, but it can be tricky to find an alternative that’s not packed with sugar, syrups and artificial sweeteners. Enter Kidchup, a delicious new condiment that’s loaded with goodness and made with four times less sugar than the market leader. Created by mum-of-one Milly Cundall, the recipe also uses apples and dates for sweetness rather than fruit concentrates – and the best part? Your kids won’t even notice the difference! £3.65, millycundall.com
FANCY A CUPPA? If your kids are yet to relish any hot drinks other than hot chocolate, Small & Wild’s natural herbal teas may persuade them. There are fruity infusions, plus calming camomile and yummy vanilla chai. £5.25 per box, smallandwild.com
SNACK ATTACK OddPops is a new potato snack that’s popped rather than fried, making them a healthier choice for hungry tots. Made by the creators of Ella’s Kitchen, the triangle-shaped bites come in two flavours, have only 60 calories per bag and 10 per cent of all sales profits go to good causes. From 65p, oddpops.co.uk
The first food range dedicated to children’s mental health is here. Developed by nutritionists, Smart Infused Füd has vitamins to help with anxiety, cognitive function concentration and fatigue. Meals include lamb tagine and vegan shepherd’s pie. smartinfusedfud.co.uk LITTLELONDONMAGAZINE.CO.UK
BUT TERNUT BÖREK SNAKE DAVID FRENKIEL & LUISE VINDAHL, the parents behind Little Green Kitchen, share a favourite recipe perfect for summertime family picnics
Serves 6-8 • Active preparation: 1 hour • Start to finish: 1 hour 30 minutes INGREDIENTS Filling • 2 tbsp olive oil • 2 onions, peeled and finely chopped • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped • 1 tsp dried oregano • 1 butternut squash (about 750g), rind and seeds removed • ½ tsp ground cinnamon • 100g of fresh spinach, stems removed • 1 small handful of flat-leaf parsley, stems removed • 2 tbsp lemon juice • 300g feta, crumbled sea salt and freshly ground black pepper Egg wash • 2 eggs • 125ml plain Greek yoghurt • 4 tbsp olive oil or melted butter To assemble • 9 sheets (gluten-free) filo dough • black and white sesame seeds To serve use a mixture of raisins, carrot ribbon, lamb’s lettuce, mung bean sprouts and halved green grapes. METHOD 1 Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F/gas 6) and grease a baking tray (pan) or line it with baking parchment. 2 To make the filling, heat the oil in a large lidded frying pan (skillet) and saute the onions, garlic and oregano over a medium-low heat for 5 minutes, or until the onions begin to soften. 3 Cut the squash into bite-size pieces and add to the pan along with the cinnamon, season to taste with salt and pepper and saute for a further 25 minutes with the lid on, or until the squash is cooked but still holds its shape. Stir occasionally to prevent the onions and garlic from burning. 4 While the squash is cooking, roughly chop the spinach and parsley and set aside. When the squash is cooked, remove from the heat, stir through the spinach, parsley and lemon juice
and set aside to cool slightly, before stirring through the feta. 5 To prepare the egg wash, crack the eggs into a medium-sized bowl, add the rest of the ingredients, whisk together and set aside. 6 To assemble, place two filo dough sheets landscape on top of each other on a clean work surface. Brush the top sheet with the egg wash and spread a quarter of the filling out evenly in a line at the bottom of the sheet. Gently pull the edge of the sheet away from the work surface, roll it over the filling, tucking it in firmly, and roll up tightly into a log. Repeat with the rest of the sheets (bar one) and the filling. 7 Transfer to the prepared baking tray, join the ends of the logs together and form into the shape of a coiled snake. Tear the last sheet of filo dough into strips and wrap around the ends of the logs to cover the intersections. (You can also use this method to easily patch up the snake. Once baked, any patchwork will be invisible.) 8 Brush the snake with the egg wash and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Bake for 30 minutes, or until golden. 9 Once cooked, remove from the oven and place two small raisins as eyes and a carrot ribbon as a tongue. 10 Once the tray has cooled down, cover with some lamb’s lettuce, mung bean sprouts, grape halves and sesame seeds to create the ‘grass’ around the snake. 11 Serve warm alongside some ‘grass’ salad.
Adult upgrade: Add some ground cumin, chilli (hot pepper) flakes and more spinach to the filling and serve over a salad bowl with pickled vegetables. A helping hand: Kids can help with making the egg wash and brushing the pastry. They can also lend a hand with shaping and building the snake and be in charge of making the salad grass. LITTLE GREEN KITCHEN: Simple vegetarian family recipes by David Frenkiel and Luise Vindahl is available now (Hardie Grant, £20)
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EATING VEGANISM IS ENJOYING A MOMENT – AND IT LOOKS SET TO LAST. BUT IS IT SAFE FOR CHILDREN? BECKY DICKINSON INVESTIGATES
f there’s one lifestyle trend that has eclipsed all others in recent years, it’s veganism. According to the Vegan Society, there are now around 600,000 vegans in the UK. That’s just over one per cent of the population and the numbers are continuing to rise, with one in five people in Britain saying they’d consider going vegan. It’s now widely accepted that veganism isn’t just good for animals, but for the environment and humans too. Research shows that a plant-based diet can reduce the risk of numerous health conditions, including: heart disease, various types of cancer, obesity, high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes. Once regarded as somewhat joyless and extreme, veganism is now the beating heart of the wellbeing movement. And with an everexpanding range of vegan products available on supermarket shelves, there’s never been a better time to give up meat, dairy and eggs and get your five-a-day. But is a vegan diet as healthy for children as it is for adults? Court cases involving veganraised malnourished children are fortunately incredibly rare, but they do highlight the risks of a restrictive diet. Some experts believe that
veganism in children can cause severe health problems, and in Denmark for example, there has been fierce debate on the subject. The key to a balanced diet is to eat as many different healthy foods as possible. However, the difficulty with veganism is that whole food groups are by definition excluded. Lucy Upton, from the British Dietetic Association, says that although children can theoretically be raised as vegan from any age, it can be more challenging to meet their requirements for growth and development. “Infants and children have different nutritional demands from adults; for rapid growth, bone health and brain development to name a few,” she says. “A vegan diet is typically higher in fibre and lower in fat than a diet which includes meat and fish. This can fill up a small stomach more quickly, curbing a child’s appetite.” To counter this, Lucy suggests offering regular meals and snacks and using lower-fibre starchy foods such as white rice and bread rather than solely wholefibre versions and to use suitable fats when cooking meals, such as olive, rapeseed and avocado oils. Children also need plenty of protein for 72
growth, and this can be harder to obtain from a vegan diet. Animal protein sources, such as meat, fish, poultry, eggs and dairy are considered to be complete sources of protein because they contain all of the essential amino acids (the building blocks of protein) that the body requires to function effectively. Plant proteins on the other hand, with the exception of quinoa and amaranth grains, are incomplete as they don’t contain all the essential acids needed, so it’s especially important for vegan children (and adults) to consume a wide variety of plant-based proteins, including tofu, beans, lentils, peas, hummus and nuts. A conscious effort is also needed to include vitamin D, calcium, iron and vitamin B12. Lucy recommends choosing foods such as LITTLELONDONMAGAZINE.CO.UK
OUR FAVOURITE VEGAN TREATS FOR KIDS The key to a good diet is eating as many different healthy foods as possible – but remember children have specific nutritional needs
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HAWKER’S SNACKS HAVE LAUNCHED SOYA AND POTATO POPPED CHIPS THAT AREN’T ONLY PLANTBASED, BUT ALSO PALM OIL FREE! MULTIPACKS £6.50, HAWKERSSNACKS.CO.UK
cereals, grains, breads, and plant-based milk alternatives that are fortified with these vitamins and minerals, as well as iodine and calcium. Although as she points out, “not all fortified products contain the same amounts of certain vitamins and minerals, so be careful to check the label and remember ‘organic’ produce including dairy alternatives will have no added vitamins or minerals.” In addition to fortified cereals, beans and leafy greens can provide much-needed iron, which is best absorbed when eaten alongside food that is high in vitamin C. LITTLELONDONMAGAZINE.CO.UK
A child’s diet should also include a good source of essential omega-3 fat. In the absence of oily fish, this can be obtained from walnuts, pecans, hazelnuts, flaxseed (linseed) and rapeseed oils, or you may need to consider a supplement, says Lucy. A daily supplementation of Vitamin D is also highly recommended. Barely a day goes by when we don’t hear about the benefits of eating more plants, and many experts agree that a vegan diet can be perfectly healthy for children, but they warn it must be done carefully. If in doubt, seek 73
the advice of a qualified health professional – especially if you have a picky eater at the table! Ultimately, it’s not about meat – or a lack of it – but information. Raising a vegan child does involve a little more planning and consideration. However, when you can’t simply open a packet of fish fingers, or throw a pizza in the oven, you’re more likely to cook from scratch. What’s more, if you’re ever stuck for inspiration, you only have to turn to Google or Instagram, where there are more deliciously tempting animal-free recipes than you can shake a wooden spoon at. L
REBECCA MOORE GOES IN SEARCH OF LONDON’S BEST RESTAURANTS WHERE KIDS COME TOO Cinnamon Kitchen
Set within one of Battersea Power Station’s quirky railway arches, Cinnamon Kitchen gives parents and children a taste for Indian cuisine. The restaurant has a lovely warm open-plan feel, making families feel right at home. There’s a dedicated junior menu priced at £9 per child (under-eights), which includes a drink, main course, and for those who can squeeze in an extra sweet treat, a scoop of homemade ice cream. For mains, there’s a choice of creative plates, such as peshwari naan with house black daal; herbed chicken skewers with steamed rice; or roti and cheesy peas pizza. thecinnamoncollection.com
American movie-themed restaurant Planet Hollywood is a mini-diner’s dream. Prepare to be spoilt for choice as you flick through the XL menu – be sure to arrive with a rumbling stomach, as this is a real super-sized experience! Kids choose from a selection of mains, desserts and soft drinks for £9.95. But don’t forget to
leave room for the eye-popping milkshakes! planethollywoodlondon.com
In a capital swamped by chain restaurants, finding a good independent with charm, a friendly atmosphere and a well-thought-out kids’ menu isn’t easy, but we’ve found it. Named after owner Maria Dell’aquila’s home city of Lamezia – in the beautiful southern Italian region of Calabria – the restaurant she runs with her parents in Islington has been serving authentic Calabrian dishes for ten years. The kids’ menu is one of the best we’ve seen, allowing bambinos to choose from traditional favourites such as spaghetti Bolognese, sourdough pizzas or chicken escalope – with two courses and a soft drink for only £6.50. Belissimo! lameziaitalianrestaurant.com
With restaurants dotted about London town, Mexican favourite Las Iguanas and its ‘Iggy 74
Little diners are well looked after at Francesco Mazzei's Fiume & Friends’ menu is about as creative as kids’ menus come. Full of choice to keep the little amigos happy, children can build their own meal with Wacky Tacos, Crispy Cod Fingers and Crazy Quesadillas, choosing two sides and a yummy dessert! The beloved chain often runs ‘kids eat free’ promotions during school holidays, too. iguanas.co.uk
Fiume and Radici
These outstanding restaurants – Fiume in Battersea and Radici in Islington – are owned by chef-patron Francesco Mazzei. Each is easy on the eye – and on the palate. Radici has more of a trattoria style, boasting a bambini menu with smaller versions of Italian classics, while Fiume, in the family setting of Battersea Power Station, has just launched an unmissable new Sunday roast with an Italian twist; children’s portions are available. fiume-restaurant.co.uk radici.uk L
C L A I M YO U R
H WORTTO UP
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Choose your style and claim online! littlelondonmagazine.co.uk/monkeymonkey One pair of sunglasses per reader. Offer valid on ‘Toby’ and ‘Olivia’ styles only. Available only while stocks last.
Welcome to your seaside paradise...
holiday homes from *
Take your pick of two holiday parks in Clacton-on-Sea Highfield Grange is an action packed park perfect for the whole family! By day, enjoy a choice of swimming pools including a 200m water slide and on an evening be entertained as famous music acts take to the stage.
Valley Farm is rich in heritage yet bursting with modern facilities. Situated close by to the beach and lively Clacton Pier, this is seaside heaven.
Start your ownership journey today... Give us a call on 01795 505 550 , and we ll answer any questions! Pop our postcode into your Sat Nav Highfield Grange: CO16 9QY Valley Farm: CO15 6LY *Prices vary between models and Parkdean Resorts parks. Subject to availability.
Time to start a new photo album...
t ravel ON A WORLD TOUR National Geographic has teamed up with travel operator G Adventures to launch 12 new trips for adventure-loving families. The itineraries feature culturallyimmersive experiences designed to inspire both children and adults with the wildlife, conservation and history of places like Peru, Italy and Africa. natgeojourneys.com/family
Discover the wonders of Argentina with a Families Worldwide tour. Designed for those aged eight and up, adventures include canoeing through the rainforest, listening for monkeys in the jungle and abseiling down a waterfall, plus the best of Buenos Aires, with a cycling tour of the city and a tango show. From £3,299 per child, familiesworldwide.co.uk
Keeping big and little globetrotters on the map and in the know
SURF AND TURF
Experience both sides of Kenya with Hemingways Collection’s bush and beach package. Start with three days of safari drives in the Maasai Mara reserve, staying in private luxury tents. Then head to the coast for snorkelling, kite surfing, deep-sea fishing and plenty of time relaxing by the pool. From £2,222 per child in October half term, farandwild.travel
Kids can discover their own Sri Lanka with the Junior Explorer programme from Resplendent Ceylon. Those aged six to 14 can enjoy everything from game drives and tracking animals in the Yala National Park, to crafting their own tea, and ocean-based activities at Cape Weligama. From £12,400 for a family of four, resplendentceylon.com
Villa and boutique operator Simpson Travel has introduced a brand new ‘Simpson Nanny’ service for guests staying at its properties in Corfu, offering the ideal solution for busy parents who are craving some ‘me-time’ on holiday. simpsontravel.com LITTLELONDONMAGAZINE.CO.UK
Game drives meant early starts for the adventurous pair
In Botswana, encountering a curious elephant is the norm
POS TCAR D from
BOTSWANA ZOEY GOTO heads on a rather wild holiday with her seven-year-old daughter “LOOK MUM, A LEOPARD!” my daughter called out as the magnificent big cat leaped down from a nearby tree and sauntered right past our jeep. By day five of our first safari, my daughter Summer was already so attuned to the local wildlife that she was spotting animals before our guide; not bad for a city kid more used to London Zoo. For this week-long safari adventure, we decided to explore the Okavango Delta region in Botswana – an area blessed with some of the planet’s most diverse wildlife. We chose three small wilderness safaris camps to stay at, based on their family-friendly reputations. Our first stop was Tubu Tree, a camp with eight tents built into the treetops. The next was Seba’s spacious family lodge, complete with a private pool overlooking a zebra herd, before finishing off in style with a couple of nights at Vumbura Plains, one of Southern Africa’s most exclusive safari camps. Arriving at Tubu Tree, it was extraordinary just how close to nature we were. Our elevated room provided dramatic views across floodplains teeming with buffalos, giraffes and antelopes, while monkeys played above. Sleeping in a safari tent was a totally
immersive experience; I was awoken by a roaring lion and a noisy baboon, but Summer happily slept through nature’s chorus. Mornings began with a daybreak game drive. For a safari with kids, it’s worth paying a bit extra for private activities so you can go at their pace. There wasn’t a dull moment – lions hunting, hippos wallowing in lakes and curious elephants coming right up to the jeep. Back at camp, Summer spent time with her Bush Buddy, a dedicated mentor who organised educational activities. This was a trip highlight for her, as she learned to make African jewellery and play Morabaraba, a traditional marbles game, which she’s since taught all her friends. Afternoons at Vumbura Plains were spent exploring waterways by Mokoro canoe and meeting the local reed frogs. As the sun set over the dusty plains, we were treated to African song and dance around the campfire. Bringing a child to Botswana was an incredibly wild and enriching experience. I now have a lifetime of memories, a camera roll of wildlife shots and a daughter who wants to be a conservationist. L
Tubu Tree nights could get loud Leopards were spotted on safari
Zoey and Summer got up close and personal with the local reed frogs at Vumbura Plains Summer enjoyed spending time with her Bush Buddy
From £5,100pp; africaodyssey.com
S U M M E R’S C A L L I N G Holidaying with kids doesn’t get much better than a break to remember at The Esplanade Hotel in Cornwall
*BOOKING TERMS AND CONDITIONS APPLY.
f the lighter nights have you dreaming of sun-filled days spent exploring rock pools, paddling in the waves, or simply tucking into fish and chips on the beach, then perhaps a trip to Cornwall for some invigorating sea air is just the ticket. The Esplanade Hotel, overlooking Newquay’s world-famous Fistral Beach, is more than just a place to rest your head; it’s a destination that goes out of its way to welcome and entertain families. With its excellent coastal location, many head to Newquay for a crack at the surfing action. Catering for beginners to improvers, and everyone in-between, The Esplanade has its very own surf school, the Quiksilver Surf School. Situated at the south end of the beach, where the waves are less crowded, kids and adults alike have plenty of space to perfect their board skills. The instructors are The Esplanade Lounge is the perfect place to unwind
qualified beach lifeguards and BSA accredited too; offering a friendly service and top tuition – they’ll have you riding waves like a pro in no time at all. While the beach may be your child’s playground, the fun doesn’t have to stop there. Back at the hotel, kids have access to a dedicated indoor soft play area, a pirate ship adventure playground and a heated indoor swimming pool – meaning they’re all set for rainy days. Plus, new for 2019 it’s introducing The Hangout, a dedicated space for teenagers with arcade games, table tennis and much more. The Esplanade also runs a fun-packed schedule full of activities during school holidays and weekends, at no extra cost; this year EspFest is running from 20 July until 31 August, with a daily programme packed with family-friendly events. Children will love doughnut decorating, table tennis tournaments, build-my-bear workshops, and more. All this fun can stimulate quite the appetite; so head to the hotel’s ocean-facing restaurant, Cove, where guests can tuck into a fully seasonal menu in a relaxed setting. For little tums there’s a special kids’ menu, full of delicious treats such as cheesy dough balls and 79
fruit kebabs. After all of those high jinks, you and your little ones will be ready for a good night’s sleep. Luckily, all of The Esplanade Hotel’s rooms are comfortable, stylishly designed and fully equipped with everything needed for a true home-from-home experience. You can choose from a range of spacious family rooms, with some even sleeping up to six people. The Esplanade Hotel has all the ingredients for the perfect coastal family getaway – in fact, it’s the kind of place where childhood memories are made. L
Little London readers can enjoy a 15 per cent discount* using code LL15 esplanadehotelnewquay.co.uk The hotel overlooks Newquay’s famous Fistral Beach
SUMMER BREEZE SUITCASES AT THE READY; WE’VE ROUNDED UP THE BEST TRAVEL SPOTS TO TAKE YOUR TOTS THIS HOLIDAY SEASON
THAILAND Long haul
If you thought peaceful family getaways didn’t exist, prepare to be proven wrong at Six Senses Yao Noi. Festooned with butterfly-filled gardens, turquoise waters and a smooth honey-coloured coastline, the calming seas encasing this tropical sanctuary are perfect for water babies. Food is fresh, seasonal and delicious; children’s menus are either free or half price, and the resort’s complimentary all-day ice creams are sure to tickle their fancy. Rooms from
A home from home with added sunshine, La Madonnina in Tuscany is the ultimate escape for those in search of seclusion. This enchanting 17th century property sits in a landscape of vineyards and olive groves, with plenty of outdoor space for little ones to play. On site there’s a choice of either two-bedroom suites or a charming cottage, with complimentary family extras provided, should you need them. From £833 for seven nights; simpsontravel.com
£458 per night; sixsenses.com
Must-have gear to make the most of your getaway PETIT BATEAU SUN HAT £22 ALEXANDALEXA.COM
KENZO KIDS SWIMSUIT £44 CHILDRENSALON.COM
HAWAII Long haul
Golden beaches and statuesque palm trees – we definitely see the appeal of the Four Seasons Resort Maui. For kids, there’s a daily activities programme, plus children’s menus, a games room and rentable books and DVDs. Parents can kick back in a cabana as their charges splash and play in the enormous pool, or head to the spa for the new Infrared FIT bodywrap – packed with curative properties! Rooms
‘OLIVIA’ SUNGLASSES £20 MONKEY-MONKEY.NET
from £464 per night; fourseasons.com
WORDS: NATALIE KEELER
SUNUVA SWIM SHORTS £39 CHILDRENSALON.COM
With its ancient towns, spectacular eateries and magnificent sights, Croatia is sure to leave you dazzled. Take the stress out of organising your visit with a pre-planned itinerary; the Coastal Croatia offering from Families Worldwide guarantees excursions to the stunning Krka National Park and Waterfall, plus kayaking in the Blue Lagoon, city tours to Sibenik and boat trips to the Drvenik Islands. From
WATER BOTTLE £8.50 SMIGGLE.CO.UK
£799 per person for eight days; familiesworldwide.co.uk
KNAPSACK £130 TIBAANDMARL.COM
CORNWALL Close to home
LITTLE ESSENTIALS KIT £10 CHILDSFARM.COM
This coastal county is a hugely popular summer hotspot, and Perranporth – in the north – is especially beautiful at this time of year. Lodge at No 34 The Dunes is a stylish luxury apartment overlooking the beach, ideal for both sunset-watching and days spent building sandcastles and collecting shells. Over-sevens can also refine their surfing skills at the nearby Perranporth Surf School. From £1,226 for seven
COTTON TOWEL BALE £25 JOHNLEWIS.COM
HAVIANAS FLIP FLOPS £18 ALEXANDALEXA.COM
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EDUCATION Did you know? 40% of London parents would consider sending their child to school in the country, according to a study by Ampleforth College, which revealed Londoners spend over £11m a year on extras like after-school clubs and tutoring.
T H G I R B YO U N G T HIN GS An essential guide to your child’s education
T H I S T E R M ’ S M U S T - H AV E S …
BILLY BANDIT JACKET £64 CHILDRENSALON.COM
PENCILS (SET OF FOUR) £4 PAPERCHASE.COM
STAINLESS STEEL WATER BOTTLE £17.50 SASSANDBELLE.CO.UK
COTTON-MIX DRESS £59 LACOQUETAKIDS.COM
STRAW BOATER HAT £28 JOHNLEWIS.COM
PÈPÈ LEATHER SHOES £149 SMALLABLE.COM
EDUCATION FEELING GOOD
PREPARING FOR THE NEXT STEP Researching schools
If you want to know more about schooling and want to plan for the future, check out our sister title, The Guide to Independent Schools. Published twice a year, this is essential reading for parents looking to continue their child’s educational journey within the independent school sector. The guide covers each stage of the school career, from nursery to sixth form, and includes a comprehensive directory of independent schools across the United Kingdom as well as expert advice to help you make the right educational decisions for your child’s future.
ORDER THE LATEST ISSUE NOW! Visit chelseamagazines. com/independentschool-parent or call 020 7349 3700. The Guide to Independent Schools is also available for just £5.95 in selected supermarkets and all good newsagents.
Children can boost their confidence and tackle self-doubt by working with Confident Minds, a speciallytailored training programme that teaches the Growth Mindset. As they learn to shift their attitudes to learning via one-to-one coaching and class workshops, pupils soon become happier, healthier and more emotionally resilient. confidentminds.co.uk
Everything you need to know about what’s going on in and out of the classroom
A HELPING HAND
If your child struggles with numbers, spelling or reading, check out Dyslexia Decoded’s workshops, available to kids as young as six even without a diagnosis. Taking place in London this summer, the sessions offer support and reassurance. dyslexiadecoded.co.uk
MONEY MATTERS Help your little ones grasp the value of money with Pigzbe, a digital device that encourages them to develop healthy saving habits. Launching in June, it lets children complete activities that teach them to manage their money. Parents can set and reward tasks and send pocket money via the Pigzbe app. £76, pigzbe.com
Children have the wildest imaginations, and when they get an idea in their heads, you never seem to hear the end of it! Dazzle their minds with I Have An Idea! by Hervé Tullet, a rich, visually-engaging book that celebrates and explores the journey behind the creative process. £12.99, Chronicle Books
More girls are aspiring to careers in medicine, animals and conservation, according to research by Hoop. The study of 1,000 kids found more boys want jobs in STEM, sport or emergency services.
The Walnut Tree Nursery For boys & girls from 2 years Please telephone the school if you would like to visit and to meet the Headmistress.
Open Morning dates: Wednesday 22nd May Wednesday 16th & Thursday 31st October (Doors open 9.30)
Preparatory and Pre-Preparatory School
Hawkesdown House School
24 Lyndhurst Gardens, Hampstead, London NW3 5NW Telephone: 0207 435 4936 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.lyndhursthouse.co.uk
27 Edge Street, Kensington, London W8 7PN Telephone: 0207 727 9090 Email: email@example.com www.hawkesdown.co.uk
BESPOKE FAMILY EVENTS PERFECT PARTIES FOR THE WHOLE FAMILY WWW.DAZZLEANDFIZZ.CO.UK 01483 849 009 INFO@DAZZLEANDFIZZ.CO.UK IG: @DAZZLEANDFIZZ
READING THE MOOD
Self-awareness and emotional intelligence is the secret to a happier child, but how do we encourage this in our children? LOUISE PYNE talks to an expert her to act out real-life scenarios gives her the chance to learn about different social situations as well as different environments. USE THE POWER OF LANGUAGE
Your little one will never tire of chatting away to you, and talking and listening is really essential for fostering a healthy and positive relationship. Make sure to give her your undivided attention, use eye contact and be aware of your body language to positively impact the power of your words. Kneel down so that you’re at eye level with her and she’ll instantly feel more important and safe. “Using phrases that acknowledge and contain the emotion are more helpful, such as ‘I can see you’re very sad, let me sit with you’ or ‘I can hear how angry you are, while we can’t break toys, we can certainly find another way
SADNESS, ANGER, FEAR AND JOY ARE NATURAL EMOTIONS WE’RE ABLE TO FEEL AND EXPRESS plenty of ways to help nurture her emotional intelligence – and communication, play and physical gestures should all be on your checklist. Here’s how to get started… ENCOURAGE ROLE - PLAY
Role-play promotes self-assurance and creativity but also opens up barriers of communication to help your child identify different emotions. “A child is unlikely to feel relief from saying ‘I’m angry that I have to go to school when my little brother gets to stay at home with mummy’, but they’ll make contact with the emotion and feel understood if an adult can engage in making up a story with them to act out about storms and wild fires and roaring dinosaurs that want to stomp everywhere,” explains Chanelle. Allowing
you can get your anger out.’ Another really helpful practice is to name and express your own emotions modelling to your child that difficult feelings are a normal part of being a human and don’t need to be hidden or dismissed,” believes Chanelle. FINE -TUNE EVENING ROUTINES
As an adult, we might crave fatty or carbladen foods when we’re exhausted, but in children, being overtired manifests as fussiness, crankiness and anger. Getting your bub into a good nightly routine can really help to offset any meltdowns and keep her mood level in the run-up to bedtime. “Behaviour is hugely affected by tiredness. Children are doing a lot of learning while they’re at nursery or preschool, both socially
and emotionally and a regular sleep routine is an important foundation to work from, just as it is in adulthood. Lack of sleep can impair our ability to focus, our patience and our ability to manage our big emotions when they come,” says Chanelle. Stick to roughly the same evening pattern each day, and add little tweaks to help improve sleep, like a warm lavender-scented baby bubble bath, followed by cuddles and a story in bed before lights out. And don’t forget to make sure her room is dark, quiet and a screen-free zone. BE A BOOKWORM
Reading to your child helps her to learn how to understand the world around her. It helps her to interact with others and engages her imagination. “Children benefit greatly from any ‘quality attention’ time where they have your undivided attention, away from siblings, your work or smart phone scrolling. The experience of sharing a story with you brings about the opportunity for you to meet them in their colourful, emotive imagination which is much more sensory stimulating for your child than being in your adult world with grownup language and communication,” maintains Chanelle. Try to spend at least 10 minutes a day reading to her. BOOST SOCIAL SKILLS
Ensuring your child has the opportunity to interact with other children will help her grow, problem solve and understand her emotions better, so arrange playdates outside of nursery or preschool to boost the bonding process. “One-to-one time and feeling safe is important for a child but leaving their comfort zone, engaging with other children and being in different environments is equally important for their development. Just be aware that your child will need extra support and emotional containment as they come across all of these new experiences, such as other children’s emotions, inconveniences or disruptions to their routine,” says Chanelle. L LITTLELONDONMAGAZINE.CO.UK
t’s no secret that the emotions young children experience can be pretty extreme. One minute she’s roaring with laughter as you pull funny faces while reading her a story, the next, she’s in floods of tears because you’ve decided to add yucky peas to her favourite pasta sauce. “Sadness, anger, fear and joy are natural emotions we’re able to feel and express from infancy, and these primary four emotions are all natural, instinctive and play an important role in our emotional wellbeing,” says psychotherapeutic counsellor Chanelle Sowden (chanellesowden.co.uk). The ability to identify and express emotions is known as emotional intelligence, and helping to equip your child with the skills she needs to recognise her feelings can have a big impact on her emotional wellbeing. There’s
Engage your little onesâ€™ imagination and understanding of the world with a good read
H A P P Y C A M P E R S An export from North America, summer camps are growing in popularity in the UK. With fun options catering for every child’s interests, these five will have your kids begging you to send them away, says ANNIE QUINTON
JUDY MURRAY TENNIS CAMP, PORTUGAL
Combine a family break in the Algarve with a very special tennis camp hosted by none other than Judy Murray. Held at Quinta do Lago’s sports complex for one week this August, participants will learn how to play tennis in a fun environment with a mix of skill-building activities, tennis-specific movement training, interactive games and team competitions. Suitable for all abilities from age seven and up, Judy will share the exercises that helped both her sons become champions of the game. And if your own serve needs a bit of work, there’s dedicated sessions just for adults, too. From ¤550, quintadolago.com
CAMP KERNOW, CORNWALL Go off-grid this summer at Camp Kernow. Offering kids a digital detox and the chance to connect with the nature, the site just outside Truro is run entirely by planet-friendly means, with a wind turbine, solar-powered field kitchen, composting toilets and water filtered from a borehole. Activities focus on simpler pleasures, such as building woodland shelters, campfire feasts under the stars and artisan crafts like woodwork. Even bedtime’s an adventure, with campers sleeping in yurts, tipis, geo-domes and tree tents. Prices from £520, campkernow.org.uk
THE HIVE, SOUTH EAST
With locations across the region, The Hive’s varied outdoor ‘missions’ get kids exploring, creating, problem-solving and collaborating by blending real-world skills with technology. Each programme is rooted in storytelling, with kids given narrative control; there’s something to suit all tastes, from design and art to craft and engineering. Each concept runs over five days – come for a whole week or as little as two days – but it’s worth noting that overnight accommodation isn’t provided, so children will have to be collected every day. Prices from £55, thehive-kids.com
FIRST HAND EXPERIENCES, KENT
Young riders will take part in ﬂatwork, ride-outs, jumping and grooming
Held on a farm estate on the edge of the Kent Downs, First Hand Experiences’ sleep away camps celebrate the natural world through arts and crafts, music, theatre and whole food adventures. Outdoor activities can be anything from shelter building to wild swimming, and scavenger hunts to raft racing, encouraging the kids to really connect with the environment. Mealtime here is just as important too – campers will sample a self-sustainable lifestyle through harvesting and foraging for their meals, preparing them in the kitchen and cooking together on the campfire. Prices from £349, firsthandexperiences.co.uk
WELLINGTON RIDING, HAMPSHIRE
If your child’s horse-mad, then heaven is Wellington Riding’s junior holidays. Little ones from seven upwards are welcome to attend the weeklong camps – they can bring their own pony along, or adopt one for the duration. Suitable for all abilities, riders are split into groups of no more than eight. There’s a residential option for kids who aren’t local to Hook, or who simply want an authentic camp experience, complete with dorms and evening entertainment. Dates run throughout school holidays and half term. Prices from £475, wellington-riding.co.uk LITTLELONDONMAGAZINE.CO.UK
For a better chance of dry nights, stop your child drinking around an hour before bedtime
A WEE PROBLEM
t age six, my child was wetting the bed every night. Potty training her at two years old had been a long, drawn-out process. I had enforced it at a time that suited me because I was about to have another baby, and admittedly, before my daughter was showing signs of being ready. Night-time dryness felt a long way away so bedtime nappies were worn, and around age three that seemed acceptable. But by the time she left nursery, it felt all wrong to be putting a nappy on at night with big school round the corner, so we started trying to keep dry. Over the following year, I tried lifting her for a sleepy wee just before I went to bed, reduced drinks before bedtime, changed the sheets every night when the inevitable accident came, but the situation wasn’t improving. I (quickly and easily)
potty trained my then three-year-old son, who stayed dry through the night soon after. Getting up and changing the bed for my older child while the younger one remained dry just seemed to emphasise the issue. Had I potty trained her too early? Would she get there in time herself? Was she the only one in her class wetting the bed? Actually, bedwetting is a common condition, affecting around half a million children and young people in the UK. According to ERIC, the children’s bowel and bladder charity (an oracle on all things related to bedwetting, with a fantastic helpline manned by expert advisors that I made full use of), one in 15 seven year olds and one in 75 teenagers have night-time accidents. Boys are twice as likely to suffer as girls, and the risk is 44 per cent if one parent wet the
bed and 77 per cent if both did, suggesting a genetic link. It also meant that someone else in my daughter’s class was having the same issue, but no-one talked about it. The belief that bedwetting is a phase that your child will grow out of is commonly held by parents and many of us take a watch-andwait approach. But for kids who’ve always been wet and never or rarely have a dry night, ERIC believes it’s even more important that they’re seen by a health professional. The vast majority of children do eventually grow out of bedwetting, but this isn’t a reason to delay getting help. “Bedwetting has been shown to have a serious impact on a child’s self-esteem, emotional wellbeing and school performance,” explains Alina Lynden of ERIC. “Left untreated, this problem won’t necessarily go away by itself for many years. According to LITTLELONDONMAGAZINE.CO.UK
Bedwetting can be a problem that affects children from toddlers to teens, but how should we, as parents, deal with it? GEORGINA BLASKEY explains
EDUCATION ERIC’S GOOD HABITS TO HELP AVOID BEDWETTING Before your child sees a health professional, encourage them to get into good bladder and bowel habits: Make sure they poo regularly (at least four times a week) and treat any underlying constipation. Assess and treat daytime bladder problems first (wetting accidents or urgency for example). Drink plenty during the day – six to eight glasses of water-based fluid is best, but only have a small drink before going to bed if necessary. Ideally, stop drinking an hour before bedtime. Fully empty their bladder before they go to sleep. Move to the bottom bunk from the top if they share a room and have a night light and bucket to help if they wake in the night for a wee.
NICE guidelines on bedwetting in the UK, all children over the age of five years who are still wetting the bed should have their bladder and bowels assessed by a health professional (such as a doctor or school nurse) so that the cause of the wetting can be found. Delaying treatment can make the problem worse and mean that a child is suffering with this issue for far longer than they need to.” But why was my daughter wetting the bed? She had stopped having the odd daytime accident about a year earlier, but she did often leave going to the loo to the last minute. If your child’s ignoring the signal from their bladder in the day, they’ll be ignoring it at night too, so it’s important to address any daytime issues first. When it comes to night time, ERIC cites three main reasons why children wet the bed:
THEIR BLADDERS DON’T STRETCH ENOUGH TO HOLD THE WEE THEY MAKE AT NIGHT The cause of this could be constipation – a bowel full of poo pushing on a child’s bladder limits the space it has to stretch and fill, LITTLELONDONMAGAZINE.CO.UK
Reward your child for drinking well during the day and for helping change wet bedding rather than for keeping their bed dry, which is beyond their conscious control. Think positively; they can try repeating the phrase “I can be dry!” as they get into bed.
causing day and night accidents. A doctor’s assessment and laxative treatment is usually necessary to help childhood constipation. A child’s bladder may be ‘overactive’ and give an urgent signal to empty before it’s full. An overactive bladder usually holds lower than average amounts of wee. Signs of this are if a child is weeing over seven times a day, they can’t hold on even for short amounts of time or get caught short with very little warning. Check how much a child who wets the bed is drinking and when. Kids need around six to eight cups of waterbased fluid spread throughout the day and to stop drinking an hour or so before bed. Caffeinated or fizzy drinks particularly close
to bedtime can irritate a child’s bladder and make it more likely that they will be wet.
THEY PRODUCE TOO MUCH WEE AT NIGHT
The hormone vasopressin tells the kidneys to make less wee at night. If a child doesn’t produce enough vasopressin while they’re asleep, they keep making daytime volumes of wee, which their bladder can’t hold.
THEY DON’T WAKE UP WHEN THEIR BLADDER SENDS A SIGNAL THAT IT’S FULL Some children just don’t wake up when their bladder tries to tell them it’s full or they wake just after, when it’s too late. This isn’t related to depth of sleep but rather their ability to rouse from sleep to the full bladder signal. When and how to intervene is the big dilemma. It’s important to go through all the options and work out what will suit your child best. Bed alarms are recommended for over-sevens. We chose the Malem bedside bedwetting alarm and mat (£151.95, amazon. co.uk) but there are also body-worn alarms with which the urine detector clips on to their underwear. My daughter recorded her voice as the alarm saying, “Wake up, you’re having a wee!”; we put the mat under her sheet and went to bed with our fingers crossed. That night as the first few drops leaked out, she jumped out of bed and finished her wee in the loo. The second night she did the same. The third night she stayed dry and has been ever since. I think we were very lucky, but for an alarm to work the child needs to be motivated to stop bedwetting. Medication can be used alongside the alarm or by itself. Desmopressin is the medicine which ‘tops up’ the body’s levels of the hormone vasopressin and tells the kidneys to produce less wee at night. What’s great is it can be taken regularly every night or just for trips away, so for older children with residential school trips and a sleepover on the horizon, it can make all the difference. While you’re in it, bedwetting can feel like a never-ending phase with no easy solution. Support your child and reassure them that it won’t last forever. But don’t just watch and wait if they’re over the age of five – seek help from the professionals and the whole family will benefit. L FURTHER INFORMATION eric.org.uk Helpline: 0845 370 8008
Festival on on the the Farm farm Festival
AG E N DA
MARTHA ALEX ANDER reveals what’s going on in the capital
THE GRUFFALO Wednesday 3 July onwards. Adapted from the popular books by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler, the Gruffalo, with his knobbly knees, terrible claws and green wart, will take to the stage this summer. Expect music, magic and more right from the heart of the deep, dark wood. Admission: From £15.
Lyric Theatre, 29 Shaftesbury Avenue, London W1D 7ES tallstories.org.uk
BUILD A STORY
Saturday 22 June, 12pm until 4pm. For any budding storytellers, this afternoon of narrative delights will enable youngsters to make, touch, sign and explore, as they create, share and celebrate stories. Suitable for all ages, and fully accessible to deaf children.
Thursday 6 to Sunday 23 June. Based on a poem Sylvia Plath wrote for her own children, this show allows audiences to escape into fantasy – taking you to a land of exotic animals and extraordinary climates... and even into space. It’s an ideal show for babies and toddlers with a keen sense of adventure.
The British Library Entrance Hall, 96
Admission: £20 for one adult and
Euston Road, London NW1 2DB
The Little Angel Theatre, 14 Dagmar Passage, Off Cross Street, London
A Child’s Garden of Verse
A CHILD’S GARDEN OF VERSE
Sunday 14 July. A vibrant family event, Acton Carnival boasts a traditional street procession of dancers, musicians and performers as well as an abundance of food stalls. A brilliant way to see communities connect and to celebrate the rich cultural cache London offers.
Acton Park, Acton, London W3 7LB
Sunday 12 May, 12.30pm to 4.30pm. This outdoor day of fun in a green and leafy park is made for families, thanks to traditional fairground rides, live music and a full street parade. There are also arenas showcasing horse riding and even military re-enactments. This is a true taste of British summer time.
Road, London W9 2PF
Bushy Park, Hampton Court Road,
Chickenshed, Rayne Theatre, 290
Hampton TW12 2EJ
Chase Side, London N14 4PE
COMMUNIT Y FESTIVAL
SUPER HERO WEEKEND
Sunday 30 June. A one-day London festival in a Finsbury Park is the ideal way to introduce older children to alfresco music parties! With the likes of The Kooks and Kate Nash playing, there’s set to be a low-key vibe that promises a relaxed day of dancing in the sunshine. Not suitable for children aged four and below.
Saturday 4 to Monday 6 May. Animal magic is the order of all three days, as children and parents join in a heroic quest at Lee Valley Farms. From getting to know all the creatures on the farm to having faces painted like whichever superhero inspires you the most – this will be a weekend of fresh air and super powers!
Lee Valley Park Farms, Stubbins Hall
Cromwell Road, London SW7 2RL
Lane, Waltham Abbey, Essex EN9 2EF
Saturday 4 May to Sunday 7 July. A theatre inside a barge on a canal in the heart of Little Venice – we can’t imagine a more dreamy summer situation. Audiences of all ages will be delighted by the shadow puppets and music which bring a host of beautiful poems to life. Admission: £8.
Puppet Theatre Barge, Blomfield
A QUEEN, HER PRINCE AND A DOG CALLED JIM Saturday 25 May to Saturday 31 August. This pop-up performance reveals an intriguing link between the V&A Museum, Queen Victoria, Prince Albert and a little canine pal of theirs called Jim. A wealth of secrets and surprises will be unearthed – perfect for history buffs of all ages. Admission: Free.
Victoria and Albert Museum,
STIG OF THE DUMP Tuesday 7 to Saturday 18 May. Clive King’s popular novel has been developed into a fabulous show by the Chickenshed Young Company. Audiences will be delighted as they see the story of Barney finding true friendship in the most unlikely of places.
Admission: From £3.
THE SLIGHTLY ANNOYING ELEPHANT Friday 10 May to Sunday 4 August. Suitable for ages three to eight, comedian David Walliams’ hilarious story about the eponymous elephant is recreated onstage. The story of Sam, who adopts a blue elephant with a passion for cycling and eating, but doesn’t realise they will actually have to live together, is as energetic and funny as you’d expect it to be. Admission: From £5.
The Little Angel Theatre, 14 Dagmar Passage, Off Cross Street, London N1 2DN littleangeltheatre.com
Super Hero Weekend
MY TH & MAGIC FAMILY RAVE
THE PHOENIX OF PERSIA
Sunday 19 May, 2pm to 4.30pm. For ravers young and old, it’s time to party en famille! With ‘myth and magic’ as the theme, revellers of all ages are invited to go to town with their costumes – think pixies, wizards and dragons. Face painting, glitter canons and glow sticks will all feature here, not to mention house, hip hop and electro tunes.
Thursday 30 May, 2pm to 3.30pm. To mark the launch of her new picture book The Phoenix of Persia, author Sally Pomme Clayton is staging a storytelling like no other, for those aged six and over. This will be accompanied by original music played on traditional Iranian instruments, which children will be invited to try for themselves, exploring their unique sounds.
Admission: Adults, £10; children,
AESOP ’S FABLES Sunday 16 June onwards. Aesop actually told some 725 fables in his time, but Unicorn have selected only a few to retell on stage. These well-loved stories are brought to life for three to seven-year-olds (there is an alternative performance for older children) in a modern, relatable and memorable way.
£7; pre-walkers go free.
Admission: From £7. London NW1 2DB
VICTORIA AND ALBERT’S BIRTHDAY BASH
London SE1 2HZ unicorntheatre.com
WALTHAMSTOW GARDEN PART Y
Lloyd Park, Forest Road, Walthamstow, London E17 4PP walthamstowgardenparty.com
UNICORN WEEKEND Saturday 29 to Sunday 30 June. Anyone who’s ever wanted to meet and touch a real live unicorn, can see their fantasies come to life by heading to the farm this weekend, when a few of the magical creatures will be in residence, ready to greet visitors.
Admission: From £11.50.
The British Library, 96 Euston Road,
London WC2R 2AB
Unicorn Theatre, 147 Tooley Street,
Saturday 20 to Sunday 21 July. With his unmistakable multicoloured body, Elmer has always stood out. And as 2019 marks the loveable elephant’s 30th birthday, celebrations are afoot. This show features some 21 puppets who all help narrate the story of this very special creature who stands for uniqueness and originality. Children of all ages will leave knowing the power of always being yourself.
Proud, Victoria Embankment,
Admission: From £8.
Saturday 13 to Sunday 14 July. Music stages, dance tents, food, film and art – all this and more will be on offer at the Walthamstow Garden Party, in partnership with the Barbican. A perfect day out for families.
ELMER THE PATCHWORK ELEPHANT
R EVIEW: BY R EBECCA M OOR E AND RUBY, THR EE
ZSL LONDON ZOO
Open every day of the year except Christmas Day My three-year-old niece is animal (and baby) obsessed. She’s now at the age where she comments on everything, so a morning wandering the zoo meant her curious little mind would be well occupied, plus who doesn’t like hanging out with furry friends? Our first stop was the lions and tigers, with obligatory roaring from Ruby, as we spotted the big cats clambering through the trees. But it was the penguins that really held her attention; Penguin Beach features a large pool with underwater viewing areas – perfect for little visitors – so you can see how the flippered creatures fly under water. With twice-daily feeds, Ruby squealed in delight as she saw them jumping into the water. However, the highlight of the day saw us step away from the usual suspects, as we all fell in love with the okapi – the only living relative of the giraffe – and its hilarious waggling tongue! Admission: Adults from £32.50; three
Wednesday 29 May, 11am to 3pm. As royal celebrations go, a party to celebrate Queen Victoria and Prince Albert turning 200 has got to be up there with the most important. With activities for the whole family to enjoy, guests can dress up in their Victorian clobber, learn all about the traditions and customs of yesteryear and play games like skipping, yo-yos and marbles. Admission: Free.
The LookOut, Hyde Park, London royalparks.org.uk
LIT TLE FEET: EXHIBITION EXPLORER Thursday 11 July, 10.30am. Part of the British Museum’s Munch exhibition, these playful workshops focus on adventure, inviting chidren under five to travel through parts of the famous painter’s exhibition. Held in one room, this interactive experience involves stopping off at activity stations to create travel documents – and passports can even be stamped!
to 15 years from £21.12; under-threes
Lee Valley Park Farms, Stubbins Hall
The British Museum, Great Russell
Regent’s Park, London, NW1 4RY
Street, London WC1B 3DG
Lane, Waltham Abbey, Essex EN9 2EF lvfarms.co.uk
Animal-lover Ruby enjoyed exploring London Zoo
Monski Mouse’s Baby Cabaret
MONSKI MOUSE’S BABY CABARET Wednesday 24 to Friday 26 July, 10am to 12pm. A live musical show boasting a playlist of nursery classics to sing along to, Monski Mouse’s cabaret is designed with very small children in mind. There will be elements of puppetry and clowning – and never a dull moment. Admission: From £8.50. Southbank, London underbellyfestival.com
LIT TLE FEET: FOREST ADVENTURE Friday 28 June, 10.30am. Inspired by the paintings of Munch, under-fives will be whisked away on an artistic adventure which will see them ‘visit’ the forests of Norway before helping to create a huge leafy mural. Admission: Free.
The British Museum, Great Russell Street, London WC1B 3DG britishmuseum.org
SCIENCE SUMMER CAMP Monday 1 to Friday 5 July. Budding scientists aged between four and eight years old will jump at the chance to spend a week doing experiments in a laboratory. Children will be actively involved in their learning and will take home what they have made at the end.
BEASTS OF LONDON Until January 2020. How have animals – from lions to rats - shaped London? What role have they played in the city’s history and development? This brilliant exhibition is set to tell us. Starting with the Romans, through the Middle Ages, right up to today, the story of the city is narrated by the beasts themselves (some of whom might sound familiar, thanks to the likes of Kate Moss and Stephen Mangan lending their voices). Expect to be totally engaged.
Wednesday 8 to Sunday 12 May. Based on the book written by Joan Aiken and illustrated by Jan Pienkowski and presented by One Moment In Time Theatre, this performance includes live music and puppetry, an original score and an exciting cast of characters, from plucky kids to chatty camels. A joy! Admission: From £5.
Little Angel Studios, Sebbon Street Community Centre, London N1 2EH littleangeltheatre.com
Admission: From £20.
NATURE EXPLORERS : BIG BIOBLITZ
Museum of London, 150 London Wall, London EC2Y 5HN
Tuesday 28 May, 10am to 3pm. Parents can drop young explorers off at The LookOut in the heart of Hyde Park to spend the day as an ecologist, learning how to survey and analyse the biodiversity of the park’s pond, trees and flowerbeds. Suitable for children aged eight to 11, who can expect to become birdwatchers, bug-catchers and wild flower experts.
BALLET SHOES Thursday 4 to Sunday 7 July. London Children’s Ballet celebrates its 25th anniversary by presenting this gorgeous production of Noel Streatfeild's Ballet Shoes. Set in the 1930s, the story of Posy, Pauline and Petrova, three very different girls who join a stage school, is beautifully told and won’t be forgotten in a hurry.
The LookOut, Hyde Park, London royalparks.org.uk
Beasts of London
GODSTONE FARM Saturday 25 May to Sunday 2 June. During half term, children can take part in Wildlife Discovery week on this idyllic farm, donning their binoculars to go off in search of mini beasts. Admission: From £12.80. Godstone, Surrey RH9 8LX godstonefarm.co.uk
BIRDS NEST BILLY Saturday 4 May, 1pm and 3pm. The wish-granting bird who lives in Billy’s big hair is the subject of this witty performance, with an emphasis on audience interaction. Admission: From £7.
The Peacock, Portugal Street,
Canada Water Theatre, London,
TASTE OF LONDON
London WC2A 2HT
Wednesday 19 to Sunday 23 June. This summer festival dedicated to feasting is the highlight of the foodie calendar. Join some 50,000 people in Regent’s Park for an al fresco celebration of food and drink. Think cakes, live music and hopefully great lashings of sunshine. There will be tutorials from world-class chefs and offerings from some of London’s best restaurants.
Admission: From £23.
Regent’s Park, Chester Road, London NW1 4NR london.tastefestivals.com Taste of London
Admission: £380 for the week.
Baden Powell House, 65-67 Queens Gate, London SW7 5JS richereducation.co.uk
PHOTOGRAPHY: JUSTINE TRICKETT; ERIC RICHMOND
A NECKL ACE OF RAINDROPS
PHOTOGRAPHY: HELEN MARSDEN
MATTEO WEARS COTTON TOP, £39, PETIT BATEAU. DENIM DUNGAREES, €87, LOUIS LOUISE.
Founded by HRH Princess Marie-Chantal of Greece, this beautiful childrenswear label designs pieces using the most luxurious fabrics, from cotton to cashmere. Here you’ll find traditional clothing for girls, boys and babies from newborn up to 12 years old. The flagship store is situated in Notting Hill, and we defy you to leave this gorgeous boutique empty-handed!
Since opening her first shop more than two decades ago, Cath Kidston has gone on to become one of the best-loved names in British design. The brand is best known for its signature prints with a hint of nostalgia, adorning clothing and accessories for both women and children, homeware and more. Recent collections include special collaborations with the likes of Fearne Cotton, New Balance and Disney.
61 Ledbury Road, Notting Hill, London W11 2AA mariechantal.co.uk
Stores across London cathkidston.com
ARSÈNE ET LES PIPELETTES
MILK AND BISCUITS
ALEX AND ALEXA
OUTSIDE THE LINES
STELLA MCCARTNEY KIDS
Home to more than 200 fashion, sportswear and toy brands from across the world, Alex and Alexa is one of the coolest online boutiques around. Founded more than a decade ago by husband-and-wife team Alex Theophanous and Alexa Till, the site remains dedicated to offering parents the world’s best kids’ brands at the click of a button. Look out for stylish collections from the likes of Adidas Originals, Billybandit, Stella McCartney Kids, Young Soles and many more. alexandalexa.com
Create a truly magical and bespoke bedroom for your child with Cuckooland’s range of quirky furniture and toys. From novelty beds designed to look like aeroplanes and camper vans, to supersized beanbags, printed teepees and indoor hammocks, this is the place to let their imaginations run wild. The online retailer has plenty of gift ideas and worldwide designer pieces for the rest of the home and garden, too, so parents don’t have to miss out on all the fun.
THE ANIMALS OBSERVATORY ALEXANDALEXA.COM
Yuki realised there was a gap in the market for luxury childrenswear
THE BUSINESS Yuki Oshima founder of
The inspiration behind the Owa Yurika brand is Yuki’s daughter, Honor Yurika, who is now five
The childrenswear label’s creative director talks about keeping business in the family Why did you set up Owa Yurika?
After university, I began a career in finance but quickly realised my passion was in fashion. So I started working for Harper’s Bazaar in Toyko as a fashion editor and then became a worldwide contributor for them. When I got pregnant with my daughter – Honor Yurika – the Yurika from Owa Yurika comes from her middle name – and started looking more closely at childrenswear designs,
I noticed a gap in the market for something luxury, unique, stylish and three-dimensional. Describe a typical day for you.
I’m a morning person so I wake up early, work out and sometimes do emails or make calls to Japan and then prepare breakfast. I take Honor, who’s now five, to school before heading to our studio. After I pick up my daughter in the afternoon, I try and focus on her until she goes to bed at 8pm, though I must admit I sometimes end up having to deal with emergency work situations. I get some more work done before I go to bed, especially as I want to make the most of the time difference with Asia. What’s the best thing about your job?
Yuki and her mother work together to design the label’s characterful clothes
Working with my mother! I created the brand with her and we’re extremely close. We’d
been discussing starting a business to give us the chance to spend more time together and this seemed like the perfect opportunity. My mother has always been extremely stylish and has written bestselling books on colour theory, so her input to the business is crucial. We have different strengths, so it’s always helpful to run things by her when I feel stuck with a decision or an idea, as she can add a fresh perspective. What’s been your proudest moment?
When we saw our collection stocked in Harvey Nichols for the first time; it was wonderful to see the fruits of our labour come to life on the shop floor! What advice would you give to others wanting to launch their own brand?
Set specific long-term goals, then break them down into short-term targets to meet. Be humble and eager to learn from anybody, but be sure to stick to your core vision. What can we expect from Owa Yurika in the next 12 months?
Currently, we design luxury clothing for girls aged between three and 12, but later this year we’ll be adding a layette collection as well as a capsule line for boys. Plus, look out for some exciting collaborations! L Available from Harvey Nichols and at owayurika.com
Time for the little things
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