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made mums and dads edinburgh

March/April 2015

be Why it’s ok to


mediocre mum Easy Pizza Cooking is child’s play

PLUS advice, news, competitions, reviews, events, shopping, beauty and lots more…

!to E E R F y Child entr

orld Deep Sea W DE A for every M ! r e d a e r


£34.50 See website for further details

Find us at North Queensferry, Fife KY11 1JR. t. 01383 411880 By the Forth Rail Bridge, just 20 minutes from Edinburgh

Drop In And Sea Us Open Daily From 10am




1 Free child (worth £9.50) when accompanied by 1 full paying adult.Voucher not valid with family/e-tickets or any other promotion. Terms and conditions apply. Photocopies will not be accepted. Offer valid until 30/06/2015. CODE MADE

E V A S 0


welcome Contributors It’s nearly Easter. We asked our contributors how they eat theirs! Heidi Scrimgeour (pages 13-16)

It’s usually NOT mine but the kids’ - so I tend to scoff it alone in the kitchen under cover of darkness and hope they won’t catch me!

Dawn Geddes (pages 32-36)


Well obviously you bite off the top, suck out the contents until it’s completely hollow before consuming the rest of it. Everyone does that, right?

In a recent conversation, a friend exclaimed ‘thank goodness for other mummies!’ And how right she is! Mummies rock! Not only do our kids think we’re the bees knees and dads think we are wonderful, but to our friends we are the support network we each couldn’t do without. We loved Heidi Scrimgeour’s article on page 13 about why it’s okay to be a mediocre mum. Which none of us are, of course! It’s simply a reminder to stop being so hard on ourselves and let the small things go. As a special treat we’ve hunted around for some lovely gift ideas to spoil ourselves with (see pages 40 and 41). And when the time comes we wish each and every one of you a very Happy Mother’s Day. Don’t worry dads; we think you are pretty awesome too. We’ll talk about you guys in the next edition…

Louise x

Editor & Publisher Louise Wilson

Robert Irvine (pages 44-46)

It’s all about the first bite. The bite that breaks it makes it!


Sales Executive

Caroline McClean


Heidi Scrimgeour, Caroline Malcolm, Dawn Geddes, Robert Irvine


Under-Fives Mum

Agony Aunt

Jojo Sutherland


MAMi Designs


© smiltena -


Stephens & George

MADE, PO BOX 28825, Edinburgh, EH14 9BA T: 07738 068022 • E: All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or part without permission is strictly prohibited. While every care has been taken in compiling MADE magazine to ensure that it is correct at the time of going to press. MADE (Mums And Dads Edinburgh) assume no responsibility for any effects from errors or omissions.

made MARCH / APRIL 2015


CLOCK IN AT THE IDEAS FACTORY THIS EASTER! This year the Science Festival is generating hands-on workshops and fun activities for all ages – check out our production line and discover a great family day out.

4–19 April 2015

Sensational science shows and interactive workshops at Summerhall offer a world of new experiences. Check out Dino Day for pre-historic family fun, Space Day for intergalactic exploits, and don’t miss the Edinburgh Mini Maker Faire. For curious kids there’s a spectacular scientific adventure at City Art Centre. Step into the Carnival of the Mind, create Pongy Potions or Little Sparks and discover the Secret Life of Coral. There’s also a packed programme of events from our city partners including the National Museum of Scotland and Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh.


BOOKING HOTLINE: 0844 557 2686

Entomologist? Beekeeper? Ballerina?

At Sparkle Arts we encourage children aged 1-5 to develop and learn through a fun mix of music, dance and drama. Our classes bring subjects to life to accelerate learning, whilst building confidence and improving social skills. It’s a creative education that will make little minds sparkle and teach children skills that will last a lifetime. Go online to find out more and book a class.

make learning fun.




march / april

44 6 News


11 Competitions 15

Why it’s ok to be a mediocre mum

Mums, relax…


Easy pizza

Cooking is child’s play



How to find exceptional childcare


Under-fives Mum

21 Upcycling

Costume Drama

Get creative & recycle


Mother’s Day gift guide


Dates for your diary

Time for treats

Get out and about in March & April


Cherish Childhood UK

30 Easter activities

Sponsored by Gymboree

44 Review

No need to hunt for things to do


Highland Retreat


Spring Fresh Skin

Make-up tips for busy mums


Trust Jojo!

If you need advice…


news Water Baby Isabella Fraser (7 mths)

Water Babies Story Book

To the Letter Edinburgh artist and founder of Little Letter Studio, Jo Martin, specialises in making unique personalised alphabet prints for children. Combining her love of painting and letterpress, the result is a quirky, hand-painted alphabet of animals, vegetables and vehicles. Jo designs art that appeals to both children and adults, mixing playful images with muted grown-up colours. Jo says: “Children’s decor in saccharine or insipid colours is a bit tedious. Instead, I prefer to use colour palettes inspired by mid-century graphics: greys, blues, browns, antique pinks. These are the colours that I’d choose to use in my own home.” Prices start from £22.


Water Babies is introducing fantastic changes to its programme from the summer term starting in April. All beginners will now receive a special story book detailing their Water Babies journey, from first splashes in the pool right up to independent swimming as a toddler, with fun stickers to chart progress. Every beginner’s block of lessons also now includes complementary attendance at a photo shoot to capture magical underwater images. Call 0131 554 6682 for info on your nearest class.

Join the Monkey Troop Monkey Music, the award winning pre-school music group for children is accepting applications for a new recruit to join their expanding merry band of teachers in Edinburgh South. Teachers are carefully chosen for their natural ability to communicate with and entertain young children and their carers. Full training, instrument kit, props and lesson plans are provided. A tuneful singing voice is essential and performing experience is desirable along with the ability to have lots of fun! For further information contact Lisa on 0131 441 4581 or

news Clifton Hall Clifton Hall Nursery provides quality education and care for 40 children aged between 3 and 5 years of age. The nursery is set within its own extensive outdoor area and Clifton Hall’s unique grounds, providing pupils with daily opportunities to explore the natural world and experience seasonal changes. During a typical week, each Nursery child will participate in keyworker-led activities such as music, dance and PE. Pre-school children will participate in French, mathematics and have the option to swim during an afternoon session. The Nursery children plan their half-termly topics, which encourages them to become effective contributors, responsible citizens, confident individuals and successful learners.

Edinburgh West Baby & Toddler show is back! It is with great excitement that the Capital Hotel is hosting the second Edinburgh West Baby & Toddler show on Sunday 29th March 10am – 2pm. The show will feature demonstrations and interactive sessions, as well as opportunities for parents, expectant mothers and families to get involved and try products whilst gaining valuable advice and support. Exhibitors include Baby Doodahs, Disco Duck, Gymboree, Happy Faces, Jo Jingles, Pyjama Drama, Smallprint, Step it Up Dance, The Daisy Foundation, Turtle Tots and so many more! Proud to be supporting Bliss Scotland charity the event is completely free to attend! made MARCH / APRIL 2015

Just Party Just Party is CBeebies star, Justin Fletcher’s brand new album. Featuring a mix of traditional party songs, popular contemporary hits and the brand new single ‘Just Party’, Justin’s album is the ideal soundtrack for your little one’s party. Justin will be performing his new single as part of Justin & Friends: Mr Tumble’s Circus, the new arena spectacular touring the UK from 1st-14th April.


news Professional Childcare

New to Edinburgh, Crafty Cooks is a cooking club for children aged 2 ½+. They make all sorts of delicious foods, from beetroot cake to quiche, to allow children to explore different ingredients so it’s great for fussy eaters! Groups are kept small to allow each child to get the most out of the class and learn an important new skill. For more info go to or call Judith on 07891743684

Toria Maclellan, friendly and professional Childcare Recruitment Consultant at Greycoat Lumleys Scotland, helps busy parents find long lasting childcare solutions, for full time or part time placements, in and around Edinburgh. All Nannies, Mother’s Helps and Nanny/Housekeepers are interviewed and reference checked and Toria listens carefully to the needs of parents to present them with the best matches possible. To discuss your childcare requirements with Toria call 0131 556 5139 or email There is no obligation and no fee to pay unless a suitable Nanny is placed.

Turtle Tots East Lothian

Under New Management

Turtle Tots, the acclaimed baby and toddler swimming programme, is under new management in East Lothian. Karina Reinhardt has been successfully running Turtle Tots in Edinburgh for three years and is delighted to be expanding into East Lothian and bring her enthusiasm for teaching young children to swim. Karina and her team teach several hundred babies in Edinburgh and are thrilled to have the chance to meet the babies of East Lothian now too. The current term in East Lothian is running in Musselburgh, but additional venues will be announced soon. For more information contact Karina on or 07964 840 049


news Dive Deep into 2015 events Deep Sea World kicked off the year with a visit from Queen Elsa and Jake who joined the Deep Sea World crew for fun and frolics at half term, with regular sing-a-long sessions, pirate storytelling, photo sessions, crab racing and heart melting love stories! Their activity programme is being enhanced in 2015 with the arrival of Fishy Fun Time which runs Monday – Thursday, 10am - 12 each day; with music, crafting and play sessions and their very own Clown School! Spaces are limited so pre-booking is recommended.

Buy one get one FREE ice-cream! Magical Experience with Toca Nature

Victor & Carina Contini have a beautiful new building right next to Edinburgh Castle. Don’t miss the chance to experience their exciting new venture; they are offering a buy one get one free on the best gelati in town! Offer available Mon-Fri until Fri 27th March made MARCH / APRIL 2015

Toca Boca’s latest app Toca Nature (£1.99) captures the wonder and magic of the natural world with its unique, dreamlike style. Kids can create and explore their own environment, populating it with different species of plants and animals, sculpting the landscape with lakes, mountains and different types of forest and woodland.


on Stage

Based on the popular CBeebies’ TV show, Octonauts and the Deep Sea Volcano Adventure takes the deep sea action onto the stage for live adventure for ages 2+. The entire crew of the Octonauts, led by intrepid explorer Captain Barnacles, Lieutenant Kwazii and Medic Peso, embark on an exciting new underwater quest and visit amazing underwater worlds full of adventure, with surprises around every corner. This action-packed interactive show features new music and all the Octonauts live on stage for the very first time.

WIN To win a family ticket (4 seats) to see the show on Sat 4 April at 4pm at King’s Theatre, Edinburgh, just tell us what animal the Medic Peso is. Email your answers to competitions@mademagazine. before Fri 27 March and include your mobile number.


news Sanctuary

Edinburgh Montessori Arts School is passionate about their personalised and progressive educational approach. Their environment is an ideal learning sanctuary with the benefits of both city and countryside on the doorstep. Providing educational care, their teachers support each phase of development by recognising when a child has mastered his/ her surroundings and is ready for new challenges. Children move through each developmental phase at their own pace as valued members of our close-knit community.  Creative arts specialists inspire a plethora of activities in addition to the generous opportunities provided by the Montessori classroom environments.

Bon Tot Bon Tot is a brand new baby and toddler store offering minimalist, chic, stripped back wardrobe staples, with a little touch of fun and sass. Many ranges are unique to the UK, with toys inspired by design and architecture and clothing avoiding obvious gender stereotyping, focussing on modern palettes, patterns and cuts. Quality over quantity is the Bon Tot mantra. Brands are hand selected to ensure they use best quality fabrics and transparent manufacturing to produce unique, long lasting Those who order with an ‘EH’ postcode will receive free shipping using the code ‘EDINBURGH’ at checkout


A Learning

Let Kids


Blossom Tree Children’s Nursery has two convenient locations Gilmerton, Edinburgh and Dedridge, Livingston (7:30am - 6pm, Monday – Friday). Each nursery supports a maximum of 31 children, 3 months – school age. In both locations there are three age appropriate nursery playrooms. By offering smaller numbers in each room, it allows the children to bond with their peers, have valuable group and 1:1 time with staff, and have their individual needs and interests heard and met, allowing them to play, learn and blossom.  

Can you help? It’s Good 2 Give need lots of walkers and volunteers to help with the Edinburgh Kiltwalk on 3 May. Can you get a team together or join their team? There’s something for everyone – 26 miles for the super keen, 13 miles, and 6 miles for the wee walk. The walk starts and ends at Murrayfield with lots of pitstops with food and entertainment provided. Or, if you are a band, choir, magician or singer and could donate an hour or two of your time to entertain walkers as they take a breather get in touch.




To win A, B or C simply email your name, address, phone number and answer to or enter via before April 24th. Please mark your entry Competition A, B, or C as the subject.

T&Cs. Foxlake: Winners must be confident swimmers, prize valid until June 2015, prize non- transferable, bookings for all lessons must be made 1week in advance.

• competition

Foxlake Adventures in Dunbar is Scotland’s first cable wakeboarding park. Cable wakeboarding uses an overhead cable to pull you over the surface of the lake with a feeling similar to surfing or snowboarding but on water – perfect for thrill-seekers and daredevils! We’re offering two kids (aged 6+) the chance to win wakeboard lessons with a block of five lessons, including kit hire, worth £80 each.


To be in with a chance of winning just answer this question: Where in Scotland is the first wakeboarding park?

For more information go to


For your chance to win one of five pairs of tickets for the Show, just answer this question. What vegetable are cookery theatre sponsors Albert Bartlett famous for?

For more information go to made MARCH / APRIL 2015



Gardening Scotland, the national gardening and outdoor living show will take place from 29 - 31 May at The Royal Highland Centre, Edinburgh and kids go free! There are inspirational Show Gardens, workshops and demonstrations as well as 400 exhibitors selling home and garden accessories. The Albert Bartlett Cookery Theatre, Food Fayre, giant Craft Marquee and The Big Back Garden which is dedicated to family entertainment, also provide great ideas for fun in the garden.


For more information go to


competition •

To win one of two weekend family passes to the Big Nature Festival (worth £30) just answer this question: Where will Scotland’s Big Nature Festival be held this year?

competition •

Scotland’s BIG Nature Festival is back this May at Levenhall Links, Musselburgh (just behind the racecourse). Already home to some fantastic wildlife and wading birds, the venue will transform into a wonderful festival of nature, artisan food and drink, education and discovery! Your little nature explorers will have fun going for magical woodland walks, pond dipping, learning bush crafts or attending wildlife photography workshops.

Award winning music classes for babies & young children EDINBURGH NORTH T: 0131 260 9667 E: EDINBURGH SOUTH T: 0131 441 4581 E:

Group discounts for NCT members when 3+ people join together at the same time.


Mediocre Mum Scrimgeour



made MARCH / APRIL 2015



Have you ever felt like you’re the only mum you know who can’t quite get her act together? As if everyone else around you is managing parenthood with grace and aplomb, while you secretly feel like you’re totally messing things up in the motherhood department? WELL, let me share a little secret with you. Everyone feels like this, sometimes. It’s true; it’s just that some people are better at papering over the cracks and making it look like they’re taking everything in their stride. But I’ve got good news. There is an antidote, and it’s disarmingly simple. Just give yourself permission to be a mediocre mum. I’m serious. Relax your expectations a little, drop your standards just a smidgen, and go a heck of a lot easier on yourself.  Giving up the quest to be the perfect parent can actually help make family life more enjoyable, in


the long run. Admittedly, being a mediocre mum means there’ll be days when no-one’s got any clean pants to wear, and you won’t win many awards, but it also means you’ll have greater capacity to just drink in the dreamy chaos of life with young children, instead of missing out on so much because you’re preoccupied with everything you could do better. Parents are under so much pressure to get it all right these days, but what we really need is to go easier on ourselves when we shout at the kids / are late for the school run again / generally lose the will to keep up the Mary Poppins act.


(sing along with me, now…) and settle for who we are. Just because your mum made homecooked meals from scratch seven nights a week doesn’t mean that your children’s moral fibre is in jeopardy if you serve up fish fingers on a shamefully regular basis. So, instead of berating yourself for failing to meet some arbitrary standard of parental perfection, take a moment to question where those standards come from, and then try realigning them with your own sense of what’s really important in life. (I literally breathed a sigh of relief the moment I realised that no-one actually cares whether my kitchen floor is mopped every Thursday. And if they don’t, why should I?)

Parents are under so much pressure to get it all right these days, but what we really need is to go easier on ourselves


So, in the spirit of encouraging you to do just that, here’s how to give yourself a free pass to be a mediocre mum…

Re-examine your standards

It took me years to realise that I was trying to live up to someone else’s expectations of the perfect parent. I don’t even know whose standards I was aping, specifically; I think I just sort of swallowed some sort of perfectionist myth about what makes a good mother, and every time I failed to meet those exacting standards, I’d battle with a genuine sense of failure. Whether it’s an effort to impress an overbearing mother-in-law, or a well-intentioned quest to replicate the glowing model of motherhood that your own mum represents for you, we can all fall into the trap of trying to be someone we’re not. But it’s incredibly releasing to just let it go made MARCH / APRIL 2015

Don’t sweat the small stuff

I have a friend who admits to being beside herself recently when she realised she hadn’t waved goodbye to her little boy after leaving him at nursery one morning. Will her son be scarred forever? I doubt he even registered the moment. So does it make any sense that she berates herself for this small moment of mummy misadventure? Of course not. It’s time we all lightened up about our perceived shortcomings, and just let ourselves off the hook. So the next time you feel like you’ve let your kids down or failed to live up to your expectations, try talking to yourself just as your best mate would. She’d never berate or belittle you, so think about the kind of supportive pep talk she’d give you, and then give it to yourself. Heck, do it in the mirror if it helps, but just refuse to bow to that ceaseless pressure to be perfect, which only really serves to make you feel bad.

Be real with your friends

I hold my hands up to being one of those people who tidies the house like a thing possessed when my friends are coming over. Actually, make that a recovered one of those. Because it dawned on me recently that this is practically the antithesis of friendship. If someone loves me enough to pay me a visit - and indeed if I like them enough to invite them round - then neither of us should give a monkey’s whether the kitchen clutter has been hidden away, or if there’s Weetabix on the walls. I’m



I am calmer, “happier and more

prone to laughter than when I was trying to be perfect all the time.


pretty certain I’m not destined to have a long or meaningful relationship with anyone who actually cares about such things. I have three kids and I juggle a freelance writing career with looking after the baby; there’s no way to pull that off AND have a house interior worthy of a Pinterest post. My place is messy; my toddling baby wrecks everything seconds after I tidy up anyway, and I can barely keep up with the laundry, so you can basically forget all about dusting the surfaces or artfully arranging my soft furnishings.  But… my home is cosy, and if you come round for a glass of wine by the fire I can guarantee that we’ll laugh until our faces ache. So who cares about the rest of it? Not me. I’m a mediocre mum, and proud of it.  Honestly, my failings are too numerous to mention. I shout at my kids when they don’t do as I ask (which is basically daily), I dish up Frosties for tea and pretend it’s some kind of fun treat when really I’ve just failed to go grocery shopping, and I cut corners all the time. I never iron anything, and I buy over-priced smoothies


and miniature packets of food with questionable nutritional value for my kids’ packed lunches because it’s quicker than arguing over what to put in the sandwiches again. Don’t even get me started on the time I sent my son to bed with a broken wrist (he’s prone to histrionics so I assumed he was over-egging it…) or the fact that I designed and printed thank you notes for the gifts we received when my daughter was born - and they’re still un-posted SIXTEEN months later. We didn’t get round to putting our Christmas tree up until Christmas Eve, and it was still up halfway through January. Need I go on? But nobody died. In fact, while these traits are never going to win me any parenting awards, learning to live with this kind of mediocrity means I am calmer, happier and more prone to laughter than when I was trying to be perfect all the time. Which is great news for my kids. So let’s start a revolution. Who wants to embrace their inner mediocre mum and join my club? You’re so very welcome; have a seat. That’s if you can find one underneath all those piles of unfolded laundry… n

! E C N A D ! G SIN NOW!


HAVE A GO DAY! Your child is invited to our ‘have a go day’ of drama, dance and singing classes, working alongside our fantastic team of teachers. Parents will have the chance to watch our teachers in action, and see how our fun and nurturing classes can help boost your child’s confidence and skills.

Stagecoach Edinburgh Sunday 22nd March | 2.30pm - 4.00pm

for 4-16 years Dance Base, 14-16 Grassmarket, Edinburgh, EH1 2JU Call or email now to book your child’s free place STAGECOACH EDINBURGH - Contact: 0131 610 0636 |








By Charlotte, The Pantry, Stockbridge

a z z i P



omething odd has happened. My toddler has skipped a decade and transformed into a teenager. Sleeping-in, mood swings, arguing with his little brother and (weep!) cringing when his mum swoops in for a big ol’ smooch! But the biggest ‘teenage’ change of all is the food rut. Every night my husband and I find ourselves visiting our new least favourite mealtime destination - Pizza Rut. Oh how I despise that cardboardy base, that stringy cheese and boring tomatoey gunge. I’m an advocate for taking the bland and making your own, fresh, delicious alternative. But pizza is a hard one to crack. The process takes ages and it’s difficult for kids to get involved…they lose interest while the dough proves and then we are back to my other favourite - ‘More Fireman Sam’. Noooo! This was the case until a friend of mine showed me this genius, no-faff two-ingredient pizza which has saved mealtimes (read: my sanity)! Hooray! Goodbye cardboard and hello flavour!


2 ingredient pizza base l 250g of natural yogurt l 250g of self-raising flour

Yes, you read it correctly – that’s it! Get your wee ones mixing it with their hands until it becomes a doughy ball of loveliness and stretch out to make one big pizza or 3 little ones(about the size of a side plate)

For the topping:

l 1 tbsp olive oil l 1 onion, finely diced l 1 clove garlic, crushed l 2 tbsp tomato puree l 2 cups crushed fresh tomatoes (or 2/3 tin of

chopped tomatoes) l 1 tsp brown sugar l 1 tsp oregano, finely chopped l Salt and pepper







In a small saucepan heat the olive oil then add the onion and garlic. Cook stirring over a moderate heat until translucent. Add tomato puree and stir through the onions and garlic. Cook for three minutes. Add the rest of the ingredients and stir to combine. Allow to simmer uncovered over a low heat for 20 minutes, or until the sauce has thickened. Stir occasionally to avoid the sauce sticking to the bottom of the pan. Pass through a sieve to make it lovely and smooth and avoid the ‘I don’t like it, it has bits in it’ discussion, For the rest of the toppings, the pizza world is your oyster. Finlay’s favourites are sweetcorn, ham and cheese worms (grated cheddar cheese). Ted (he’s 15 months) likes to add some bogies for good measure – only Ted eats Ted’s pizza!! n made MARCH / APRIL 2015

Make your own.. The Pantry Pizza Making classes: Friday 13th March, 3.45pm, at Jenn’s Den Friday 20th March, 3.45pm, at The Pantry Suitable for ages 2+. Accompanied by sous chef (or parent)





with Water Babies, the UK’s leading baby swim school

FOR 2015

classes held...

Fully qualified, world class instructors, teaching you to teach your baby to swim

Pick MADE up at … Cameron Toll Clambers DanceBase Doodles Gambado Gymboree Ikea Libraries Maddie & Marks Monkey Music Classes Scrambles The Hub Tiki Tots TimeTwisters Tumbles And HUNDREDS of other venues…

in Edinburgh city centre, Newington, Hermiston Gate, Oxgangs, Crewe Toll, Dalmahoy, Dalkeith and more!

If your shop/café/nursery would like to become a stockist for MADE let Louise know at or call 07738 068022


To join in the fun call

0131 554 6682


email (quoting SUB15)

T&C: This offer is available for UK subscriptions only. Subscription starts on receipt of full £15 payment via cheque or BACS transfer. Details will be provided via email.


Camp dates for 2015 Easter: April 13th-17th Summer: July 6th-August 14th



Excel Multi Sport Camp inc. team competitions, themed events, film making, Oscar ceremony, prize giving. Excel+ including Tennis, Gymnastics, Football, Athletics, Basketball, Rock School, Dance, Art, Horse Riding... and many many more.

ports s and activity camps


for 5-15 year ol


y c cling p U WRITTEN BY Caroline


Secret Book Box

Eco-chic and very popular, upcycling is a great way to recycle and express your creativity in a fun way. It’s something everyone can do; you can reuse things, reduce your impact on the environment and save money! Here are a few ideas to get you started… Secret Book Box In Scotland, unwanted books are not usually recycled due to the glue used to bind them, so they end up going in landfill or being incinerated. This means that they are perfect for upcycling! A hollow book can be a great way to hide something…a spare key, a secret note or even money. made MARCH / APRIL 2015

You will need: l An unwanted thick hardback book l White craft glue l Small paint brush l Cling film l Metal ruler l Pencil l A Stanley knife and some spare blades



1 Pick a book and check it’s not rare or valuable

before you start working on it. 2 Select a few pages from the start of the book

that you want to keep free, and an extra one. These pages (except for the last one) will not be cut out and will disguise the hole when the book is open. Wrap the pages in cling film to protect them from the glue.

TIP: You could re-use an old plastic bag or plastic wrapping from a magazine instead of cling film.

TIP: Don’t worry too much about small bits of paper sticking out- these can be smoothed down when you apply the glue. 8 Once you’ve finished cutting, apply the glue

solution along the 4 inner edges that you’ve just cut. Lightly coat the ‘frame’ of the hole and glue an uncut page over the hole. Close the book and leave it to dry. 9 Then cut along the edges of the hole on the

top page that you glued to give it neat finish. 10 Double check that inside has dried fully

3 Pour the glue into a small container and add

a little water (3 parts glue to 1 part water). This will help it absorb more easily into the pages. Use the paint brush to apply a thin coat of glue around the 3 outside edges of the book.

before adding your items and putting it on the bookshelf. No-one else will know that this book has a secret compartment! Source things to upcycle from your house, garage, friends, charity shops, car boot sales, auctions or websites like Gumtree, Preloved and Freecycle.

4 Once you’ve added the glue, place something

heavy on top of the book to apply pressure while it’s drying. Leave the book for a few hours until it has dried completely.

TIP: Make sure that the spine is nice and straight while it’s drying. 5 Once it’s dried fully, remove the cling film and

measure a half inch border from the edges of the book to clearly mark out where you are going to cut. 6 Place the metal ruler along your guide lines

and cut along the lines with the Stanley knife. Use a little pressure so that you cut through a few pages at a time. Don’t rush this step, the more carefully you do this the neater the inside edges will be.

TIP: Don’t use a plastic ruler as you’ll end up cutting away parts of it! Make sure you change the blade quite frequently as it will dull very quickly. 7 Remove the bits of paper from the inside after

you’ve cut each segment and make sure that you leave some uncut pages at the bottom.


Corky People and Chairs

Making corky people is a fun upcycling craft that the kids will really enjoy. Corky people can be made into key rings or magnets. You will need: l Some corks (Champagne, Prosecco or Cava bottles have the best people shaped corks) l Acrylic paints & paint brushes l Felt tip pens / sharpie pens l White craft glue l Scrap fabric l Broken jewellery etc. 1 First of all decide what you want your corky

person to be; a boy, girl, fairy, princess, monster, policeman, doctor, clown or superman? Have a think about what they will look like and what they will be wearing. 2 Paint your corky to your desired look with

acrylic paints or colour it in with felt tip or sharpie pens and draw its face on. 3 If you want to protect the finish on the corky

then apply a thin coat of white craft glue after


Corky People & Chairs

the paint/pen has dried. Apply the glue in smooth even stokes and in as few strokes as possible so that you minimise the risk of the paint or pens running. This step isn’t essential.

TIP: Smooth out any small bubbles that appear as they will stay on the finish if you don’t fix them.

6 You can also turn the metal casings around

the corks into chairs by unwinding the wire that loops around the bottom or alternatively snipping the wire at either side of the twisted wire with wire cutters. 7 Pull the wire out from the legs and straighten

it out to resemble the back of a chair. Then using a small set of pliers, wind the wire onto two of the legs to form the back of the chair.

4 Once the paint/glue has dried, and if you

are feeling adventurous, you can add accessories - fabric clothing, hats, little wire glasses, jewellery and woollen hair. Fabrics can be glued on with white craft glue and I recommend using stronger glue (hot glue or super glue) to add other embellishments.

TIP: This is a great reuse for scrap fabrics and broken jewellery. 5 Once you’ve decorated your corky person

you could add a small screw-in hook and a key ring, or add some small magnets at the back to turn it into a fridge magnet. made MARCH / APRIL 2015

TIP: If you are using pliers on coloured wire add some electrical tape to the tip of the pliers, this will help prevent stripping the colour off the wire when you twist it. Also make sure that the wire is twisted well in and that there are no sharp bits poking out and as an extra precaution you can cover the end of the wire with a dab of hot glue.

8 You might want to carve out a small hollow on

the bottom of the corky people so that they can sit on the little chairs more easily.



Spotlight Photo Holders / Table Place Settings Here’s a quick and handy upcycling idea for your old spotlights that no longer work. You will need: l Old spotlights l Tissue paper l White craft glue l Small paint brush l Water l Wire (I used galvanised wire from the garden centre about 1mm thick or thinner) l Wire cutters l Pliers (round nose if you have them) 1 Start by mixing a small amount of glue

solution (3 parts glue to 1 part water). 2 Tear up the tissue paper into smallish pieces. 3 Lightly coat the spotlight with glue and add

the tissue paper. Once you’ve added a piece to the bulb use the paint brush to coat the top of the paper in glue and smooth it down. 4 Keep adding the paper and the glue until your

bulb is fully covered. You can cover the metal prongs if you like but don’t cover them with too much paper as you will be wrapping the wire around them. 5 Lightly smooth down the paper with your finger and leave it to dry.

TIP: You can use your hairdryer to speed this up! 6 Once it’s dried you can add other decorations

or embellishments e.g. draw on a design, add ribbon or twine.

TIP: If you are adding something delicate it might be better to add it after the wire to prevent knocking it off.

Spotlight Holders 8 Use your pliers to shape the top part that will

hold the photo, wrap it into a circle and keep wrapping until you have an outer and inner circle. You can then push the inner circle out a bit, this creates the space to insert your photo or card in between the two circles.

TIP: If you are using household pliers put some electrical tape on them to protect the wire from the serrated edges on the pliers. 9 For one prong: start at one end of the wire

and wrap it around the prongs in the infinity shape and position the wire in the centre. For the two prong: start in the middle of the wire and wrap it around the prongs in the infinity shape and position the wire on either side of prongs.

TIP: You could, at this stage, spray paint your wire or even wrap ribbon around it. 10 Add your card or photo and enjoy!

Learn more...

Caroline runs various upcycling workshops and parties in and around Edinburgh. For further inspiration go to www.upcycledworld. com or call 07808 161 328. Alternatively join the upcycling meet-up group (for free) here - The-Upcyclers-Reduce-Reuse-Recycle/

7 Next, cut your length of wire. I used about 8”

of wire for the single pronged holder and 16” for the two pronged holder.


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Daily show 3 – 20 April, 14:00 Included with admission 01620 890202 Scottish Charity no SC025837 Image supplied with kind permission from

Dates for your diary Monday Tuesday

Wednesday Thursday

30 31




World Book Day

Buy one get one free ice-cream @ Contini Gelateria. Available Mon-Fri until Friday 27th March.






10am-12pm Take kids to Fishy Fun Time and Clown School @ Deep Sea World. Learn juggling, plate spinning to magic tricks and balloon modelling! Runs Mon-Thurs until March 20th








11am – 1pm Cherish childhood launch party at Gymboree. FREE play session with crafts, games and more. All donations welcome for NSPCC.



Remember to enter the Octonaut competition to win free tickets! See details on page 9.

Keep up to date with all the latest events by logging onto 26

March 2015 Spotlight on...

Friday Saturday Sunday

6 7

6.30pm-9pm “The Magic Lantern” @ Barns Ness Lighthouse, Dunbar. The lighthouse will be beautifully illuminated; performers will interact, Until 8 Mar..


10am-12pm & 1pm-3pm Family Open Day @ Edinburgh Contemporary Crafts, Abbeymount Techbase. Screen-printing, pottery & enamelling workshops. edinburghcontemporarycrafts.


10am – 5pm Dunbar SciFest Weekend @ John Muir Campus of Dunbar Primary School & Bleachingfield Community Centre. See spotlight for more info…

13 14


3.45pm The Pantry Pizza Making Classes @ Jenn’s Den

Mother’s Day

2pm-4pm Holy Corner Playgroup Spring Ceilidh @ Polwarth Church Hall. Includes Ceilidh Kids, home baking, face painting, and a raffle with prizes galore. £5 per ticket and under 2s free

10.30am-1pm Jack & Jill Market @ Meadowbank Stadium

20 21


3.45pm Pizza Making Classes at The Pantry

2.30pm – 4pm

Get 30% discount off headshots! 1 hour session, 4 outfit changes. Monologue & audition video reel option also available

27 28 Puppet Animation Festival Starts

‘Have a go day’ with Stagecoach Edinburgh @ Dance Base,

Grassmarket. Book your Free space

via 0131 610 0636 or

29 10am – 2pm Edinburgh West Baby & Toddler Show @ Edinburgh Capital Hotel. Free entry!

Dunbar SciFest www.dunbar 10am-5pm Sat 7th & Sun 8th March John Muir Campus of Dunbar Primary School & Bleachingfield Community Centre Family tickets (2 Adults & 3 Children) cost just £15, with £20 Weekend Family Ticket (£5 per adult & £3 per child). Building upon the phenomenal success of last year’s festival, where an extraordinary mix of 83 event providers delivered 100 different events, Dunbar SciFest is back! Get stuck into wacky workshops, sit back and enjoy science stage shows and have family fun at diverse drop-in sessions. For under-fives, there’s storytelling and soft play. The stage shows are presented in British Sign Language or are BSL/ English interpreted. made MARCH / APRIL 2015


Dates for your diary Monday Tuesday

Wednesday Thursday



April Fool’s Day




2pm (55 mins) Lempen Puppet Theatre Company: Little Frankenstein @ Haddington Corn Exchange. A gentle horror for little horrors...and a treat not to be missed! Ages 5 yrs + (£5/£4)

Easter Monday Sing-a-Long-a Frozen @ Festival Theatre. A full interactive experience with a screening of the film with lyrics on screen and sing along with Elsa and Anna.






2pm (50mins) Professor Egghead & the Alien Invasion @ Seabird Centre (runs April 3rd-20th)

Start of Excel Sports & Activity Easter Camps for 5-15 year olds






Crafty Cooks Classes start at Pentland Community Centre

27 28 29 30 Don’t forget to use your FREE child entry voucher to Deep Sea World. See page 2.

Keep up to date with all the latest events by logging onto 28

April 2015 Spotlight on...

Friday Saturday Sunday 3 4 Easter Eggcitement @ Almond Valley (until April 20th) Meet the new arrivals, enjoy the springtime trail, look for hidden eggs and create bonnets & masks in the craft area.

Science Festival 2015 starts with Dino Day @ Summerhall. A day of fun family activities with a pre-historic twist. Events and activities for all ages, times and prices vary. Visit

10 11 2pm (40 mins) Pitschi the Kitten with Dreams @ North Berwick Community Centre. A charming production full of humour, music, song and adventure. Ages 3-7 yrs (£5/£4)

Octonauts and the Deep Sea Volcano Adventure @ King’s Theatre. Embark on an exciting new mission with underwater adventure super heroes live on stage! (on 4th too)

12 Science Festival 2015 Space Day @ Summerhall. Blast-off into outer space with intergalactic activities for the whole family. Events and activities for all ages, times and prices vary.

17 18 10am – 12.30pm Sparkle Arts Frozen Workshop @ Myreside Pavillion, George Watson’s College. Optional drop off for 3 - 8 year olds. £20 per child.


2pm 3 Pigs @ The Brunton Theatre, Musselburgh. The Three Little Pigs, Susannah the Fanciful Sow and The Old Woman and her Pig. 50 mins, ages 4 yrs +. £7/£26 family of 4

24 25

19 10am-5pm Edinburgh Mini Maker Faire @ Summerhall. Science Festival 2015: Scotland’s crafting community share ideas & inspiration throughout the day. £5.


Last day to enter MADE’s competitions. Go to to be in with a chance of winning!

Science Festival 2015:

Clock in at The Ideas Factory www.sciencefestival. 0844 557 2686 City Art Centre Sat 4 – Sat 18 April (not Sundays), 9.30am-4.30pm Summerhall Sat 4 – Sun 19 April, 10am-5pm National Museum of Scotland, Chambers Street Sat 4 – Sun 19 April, 10am-5pm Light Works, St Andrews Square Tues 3 March – Fri 17 April

Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, Inverleith Row Sat 4 – Sun 19 April, 10am-6pm made MARCH / APRIL 2015


Fun Science Festival 2015 Clock in at The Ideas Factory April 4th–19th Celebrating the role of the Science Festival as a hub for ideas, information, innovation and inspiration, this year’s Festival brings a packed programme. Summerhall has sensational science shows and interactive workshops offering a world of new experiences for all ages. City Art Centre will be transformed into a science playground, full of activities for curious minds and Light Works, a stunning photography exhibition, will take pride of place in St Andrews Square.

Professor Egghead & the Alien Invasion Scottish Seabird Centre, North Berwick Daily show at 2pm (50mins), April 3rd – 20th Included with admission to the Discovery Centre. Free for members. Join in the interactive fun and become part of the ‘Biosecurity Agency’ helping to track down this global threat. Find out what action must be taken worldwide to control the invasion. With a mixture of fun, games, challenges and experiments, Professor Egghead will lead the way in the battle against these intruders!




Dance : Circus : Animation

Deep Sea World

(ages 7-9 & 10-12) Dance Base, Grassmarket April 13th – 17th £125 (£100 for additional siblings)

Dance Base has teamed up with Circus Alba and Animation Jam to bring you a fantastic Easter week! Work with dance teachers and circus specialists (enjoying acrobalance, hula hoop, juggling, and poi), then round it all off by creating and starring in a short film!

Easter Eggcitement Almond Valley Heritage Trust April 3rd - 20th Normal admission charges will apply £6.50 adults and £5 for children (age 3-15 years) The farm is alive with the cheeps and bleats of new arrivals, who will be introduced to you at handling and encounter sessions. Grab your clue sheet, sharpen your pencil and tear around the farm collecting clues on the springtime trail. Keep a look out for the hidden eggs that might win you a prize. In the craft area you can make bonnets, masks and other springtime decorations. There will be further attractions over the four days of Easter (3rd - 6th April) including the famous plastic duck race along the mill lade.

made MARCH / APRIL 2015

A fearless Easter Bunny is taking the plunge at Deep Sea World over the Easter holiday weekend (starting April 3rd) – in search of shark eggs! The diving bunny – complete with floppy ears and basket – is exploring the depths of the North Queensferry aquarium’s 4.5 million litre Underwater Safari for shark and ray egg-cases as well as helping out with fish feeds. Young visitors will also be able to take part in a fun Easter Egg Hunt around the aquarium; there is an Easter ‘Grotto’ with a selection of children’s activities on offer, as well as face painting, and additional talks and feeding demonstrations. They are also hosting their famous Mermaid event with previews on the evening of Thursday 9th April followed by Mermaid dives throughout the weekend of the 11th and 12th April with special photo opportunities at the rock pool with the real life mermaid herself!

Step It Up Dance Urban Kids Camp (for P1-P7) Broughton High School April 13th – 17th, 10am-4pm £125 per child (£110 for additional siblings) Urban Kids Camp will feature a host of activities and a surprise guest appearance from a former professional rapper who will teach the art of rap and beatboxing.





perfect child care WRITTEN BY Dawn



Finding good child care is the parental homework we all dread. Whether it’s organising care for your baby when you return to work or looking for somewhere for your child to go before and after school – we need to get it just right, so it becomes a difficult task.



WE want the people who are looking after our children to be perfect - they need to be likable, responsible, reliable, fantastic with our children and have the ability to follow our strict instructions without stepping on our toes. If they could also sing a spoonful of sugar, on demand, that would be quite nice too. As a former childminder, I can assure you that exceptional child care is out there. But how do you find it?

Start early

Give yourself plenty of time to conduct your search if possible – I’m talking about months here, rather than weeks. By leaving it to the last minute, you’ll not only seriously limit your options; you’ll increase your stress levels too.

Knowledge is power

The first thing you need to do is find out what child care services are available in your area, by searching the website of the Care Inspectorate (, the public body

that regulates care services in Scotland. Here you’ll find vital information about each service, including contact details, inspection reports as well as information on any complaints that have been made. You’ll also be able to see the quality grades that the service has received, these range from Grade 1 which is unsatisfactory through to Grade 6 which is excellent. All child care workers and childminders also have to follow standards of professional conduct and practice. These are laid down in the Codes of Practice, a guide for workers issued by the Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC), the body which registers and regulates care workers in Scotland. You can view a copy on their website ( The second part of your research is the undercover kind! Don’t contact the service straight away. Instead, try and see them in action before you officially meet. How do you do this? Well if it’s a childminder you’re looking for, you can bet you’ll see them at local mother and

The fun starts here Finding the right nursery for your little one can seem like a difficult task. But, with Cranley Nursery, we make the whole process fun.

Team Development

UK Nursery Chain of the year

Come and see our award-winning nurseries at Craiglockhart, Buckstone and Colinton, and you’ll discover stimulating, safe, happy environments geared around giving your child the best possible start in life – with indoor and outdoor learning, all the latest facilities, and experienced, dedicated and friendly staff who genuinely care about your child’s development and wellbeing. t 0131 445 2227 e

made MARCH / APRIL 2015




toddler groups, Rhyme Time and soft play areas nearby. Observe them in action, how are they with the kids? Are they attentive or distracted? Do the children seem to like him or her? It’s surprising what you can gleam from observing someone from a far. For nurseries or after school clubs, it can be a little bit trickier. However many child care providers will take children out and about on day trips and regularly visit local places such as the library. It’s also helpful to ask other parents about their experiences with child care providers in the area. But remember, just because they loved a child care service, doesn’t mean you will too. When considering your options it’s important to think long term. If you’re looking for a childminder, try to find one close to home so that they can also provide a drop off and pick up service, before and after school.

Contacting providers

Hopefully you’ll have a few providers on your list now. Phone each of them and ask if they have spaces available. Make sure you give them a clear idea of what hours you need covered. Childminders especially, have limited availability as they are only allowed to mind six children under the age of 12 at the same time – three children below school age and three children above. It’s also worth noting that many providers won’t accept changing shift patterns every week or month, so be aware that you may have to pay for a full time place, even if you don’t need one. If the provider you were dreaming of doesn’t have any spaces, make sure you ask them when they are likely to have any availability. If it’s only a short time away, perhaps you can do something in the interim such as pull together your annual leave with family members to cover the gap.

When considering your options it’s important to think long term


Greenhill Montessori Nursery Let your child’s adventure begin!

P Children from 18 months to Primary Age P Hours from 9.00 to 16.00 (Care 8.15 to 17.30) P Billingual, with Native speaking teachers in both English and Spanish P Online progress tracking system for each child P We accept Childcare Vouchers P In Partnership with Edinburgh Council P Follows the Curriculum for Excellence Our Values Here at Greenhill Montessori Nursery we are committed to providing a safe, loving and nurturing environment for each child who joins us. We engage your child socially, emotionally and educationally to ensure their success in the future. Their happiness, security and self confidence are our main goals.



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3 Greenhill Park, Morningside, Edinburgh EH10 4DW Tel: 01316290787

A friendly, professional service with personally interviewed and fully vetted Nannies Full Time & Part Time Permanent & Short Term Nannies & Mother’s Helps Nanny/Housekeepers Nanny/PAs Call Toria on 0131 556 5139 to see if she can find a solution to your childcare needs Greycoat Lumleys is registered with The Care Inspectorate to place childcarers in Scotland

Arrange to meet the child care provider at a time that suits you and your family. Make sure you bring along a list of all the questions you need answered, including: l

Who will be doing the majority of the caring for your child? l Who will be visiting the setting on a daily basis? l How many children use the service? Can you and your child meet them? l Will your child have the opportunity to visit other local services such as mother and toddler groups? l If your child still naps, where will they sleep? l If it’s a nursery or after school service, are they registered with the SSSC? Make sure you get a proper tour of the setting and take the opportunity to tell the provider more about your child. Does your little one have any special needs, allergies or conditions? Make sure you take the time to discuss these. Try not to make any on the spot decisions, come away and discuss it properly with your family first. Most services will give you a welcome pack away with you, which will include all their policies and procedures. Take the time to read this over properly and don’t be scared to contact the provider with any further questions or to arrange a second visit.

Test the waters

Think you’ve found the perfect child care? Then bag them! Once you’ve officially booked a place, work with your new provider to arrange some settling in visits for your child. Don’t leave these to the last minute, give yourself plenty of time to sort out any teething issues or change your plans altogether if the new arrangements don’t work out. Give yourself a big pat on the back, you did it! Hopefully your new child care provider will be everything you and your family need. And if you have found someone fantastic – make sure you let them know. They’re sure to appreciate it. n


Greycoat Lumleys Scotland

Childcare Recruitment Consultants 0131 556 5139

Cranley Nurseries Craighlockhart, Buckstone & Colinton 0131 445 2227

Blossom Tree Nurseries Gilmerton & Livingston 0131 664 4944 & 01506 432 578

Clifton Hall School Nursery Newbridge 0131 333 1359

Edinburgh Montessori Arts School Liberton Brae 0131 672 3851

Greenhill Montessori Nursery Greenhill 0131 629 0787

Harrison Playgroup North Merchiston Club 07580 154 391 (working hours only)


Ask the right questions



Harrison Playgroup North Merchiston Club, Polwarth

We provide 2.25 hours of quality, affordable childcare with qualified staff - a great way to gently introduce your little ones to childcare in a safe and nurturing environment. Children at our playgroup have access to a wide range of activities and play experiences. Emotional welfare and developmental needs are of utmost importance to us! All our activities support the Pre-Birth to Three curriculum and the Curriculum for Excellence as set out by the Scottish Executive.

illustration ©

A vibrant playgroup for children aged 2-5 Weekdays 9.15-11.30am

ACTIVE BEGINNINGS Clifton Hall School Nursery for children aged 3-5 years old

Take advantage of the Pre-School Partnership Grant of £2,100 per year, currently available towards Nursery Fees

Places available

NOW! Drop in and see us or find us on Facebook • 07580 154 391 (opening hours only)

Imagine a nursery...

Newbridge, Edinburgh EH28 8LQ • Tel: 0131 333 1359 • •

Where learning comes alive...

The gentle structure and positive guidance the teachers give my daughter allow her to learn and grow with such great independence. MATIAS MALMIVAARA

Where the world is our classroom...

Our family has been made extremely welcome and our son is so happy at your school. LUCY ROBERTSON

What has remained with her is a great enthusiasm for learning; whatever catches her interest, she is able to explore it further and knows how to go about finding out more.

Where children become confident, capable, selfeducators...


CoMplete MontessorI eduCatIon for 1–12 year olds CoMpleMented by CreatIve arts speCIalIsts

tower Mains Studios, 18n liberton Brae, EH16 6AE


More information 0131 672 3851


yet r r e BSw e the

Play & Party Centre Where better to celebrate your little explorer’s party than deep in the heart of the Jungle!

Party Room

rers Little Explo Package £9.50

ve a party a h ! to e ac l p l A berry coo £10.50

per child (Mon-Fri) per child (Sat-Sun)



Tiny Tikai ge Tots Pack


Spend an hour going on a jungle adventure in our Bush Babies or Tiki Tots themed play rooms before making your way to one of our beautifully themed party rooms for a well deserved birthday tea.

£400 (Fri-Sun)

£5.50 per child

Join us for a magical Frozen experience that they will remember for ever in our exclusive Ice Palace Party Room!

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£11.50 per child

Tiki Tots, 1A Nile Grove, Edinburgh, EH10 4RE T: 0131 447 0251 • E: •

Costume Drama

By Under-Fives Mum

AMID all the slips, mistakes and downright clangers, there is one thing I can safely say I’ve perfected during my time as a mother. It’s not baking fairy cakes – alas – or deciphering toddler-speak (“When you say ‘Gok’, darling, do you mean ‘Book’, ‘Fork’, or ‘Milk’? Or fashion expert Gok Wan?”). No. What I’ve got down to a tee is the frazzled-mother-of-two look. This isn’t a good thing. (Just ask Gok.) After four-and-a-half years of children our house contains little doodles, suspect stains and odd compromises to toy storage. Our car is dented from parking while distracted, its interior pebble-dashed with crumbs of varied vintage and Pom Bears. Similarly, what you might call my personal style has not emerged from my offspring’s early years unscathed. There comes a time in every woman’s pregnancy when she has to ditch her usual wardrobe and adopt maternity wear. Then, practicality has generally won over style. Fair enough, and usually temporary. But I somehow managed to maintain this state of affairs for five years. Soon after the birth of my first child, my style muse shifted from Jackie O to that woman in The Killing (ooh, warm jumper and readyfor-action hair – admirably practical). Dangly earrings were ditched (and non-dangly ones too, to be safe), as were necklaces and any rings that might scratch baby skin. I removed my lovely engagement ring to moisturise the hands I’d desiccated through constant handwashing, and then lost it forever. A certain pair of boots became my favourite, not because they’re fabulous (they aren’t) but because they have a zip tag so I could put them on and take them off while carrying a small child. And, of course, I followed the essential mum-rules: wear a long top so that when you’re bending over your youngster, onlookers won’t be assaulted by the sight of the gap between the bottom of your top and the top of your bottoms (which could show the top of your bottom). And made MARCH / APRIL 2015


always, always, wear a decent pair of socks, for those inevitable times when you’ll have to remove your footwear unexpectedly at softplay or a playdate. (Ah, we’ve all been caught out by that one.) I was just considering buying a pair of combat trousers so that I could store nappies in the pockets to avoid using a changing bag when I spotted a job I fancied and realised I’d have to look like something other than a professional parent if I wanted to be a professional anything else. Thank goodness – whatever would have been next? A hat with bottle-warming facilities? So I dusted off my work clothes. Wearing them feels less secure than before I had the kids (the possibilities for poise ruination now being almost infinite, from wee porridge-covered fingers run through your hair to a curly old Frozen sticker unwittingly sported on your sleeve), but it’s good to be back in the realm of the suited for a while. More “Uh-oh” than Jackie O for now maybe, but I’m hoping I’ll get the hang of it. Wish me luck. n

This is Cathy’s last column for MADE. We want to say a massive thank-you for her contributions over the past year and wish her every success in her new ventures.



shopping •




shopping 1


SUGARED VIOLET HAND CREAM £5.95, Cloudberry Gifts, Barnton & Blackhall


2. CHERISH EAU DE PARFUM £14 (50ml) (or from your local Avon rep)



AND JEWELLERY clarevonbergen Email Clare direct for her personalised service ringsandthings@

Leave hints for your children, highlight and show your husband, exchange favourites with your friends, or just go out and buy for yourself! Whatever you do this Mother’s Day, get treated.

4. BRIELLA SHOES £75, Dune





shopping •







7. 8.






£7.95, Cloudberry Gifts, Barnton & Blackhall




10 made MARCH / APRIL 2015


A holistic approach to developing good communication skills in young children

Official Sponsors of


Cherish Childhood We are cherishing childhood at Gymboree Edinburgh so come along and celebrate at our Gymboree launch event on Tuesday 17 March 11am-1pm

Cultivating confident & competent communicators

Gymboree Edinburgh

3 Gorgie Park Road, Edinburgh, EH14 1NL

07910 188 713

Tel: 07786 513 524 •

Cloudberry Gift & Coffee Shop stock a fantastic range of gifts, homewares, cards & wrap specialising in ‘Seasonal and Scottish’. Our Coffee Shop sells delicious homemaking and light bites… Pop in for a browse, we could be your new favourite place to shop! ‘Perfect Gifts For Everyone’ Find us on Facebook & Twitter 193 W hitehouse Road, Barnton, EH4 6BU

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MY two daughters have reached a magical stage; they are finally playing together. At three and five years old, they have found something they both love; Toy Story! Their joint passion has fuelled many hours of active play that I am hopeful will solidify into lifelong closeness. I love playing with my children; I love it an extraordinary amount. In fact, after I had my second daughter I decided I loved play so much that I have made it my life and I now own Gymboree, a centre dedicated to pre-school play running nearly 40 classes a week. However, in all honesty, it hasn’t always been this way for me. It is true that I have always loved children, I’m a trained preschool gymnastics teacher and I thought having children would be natural and easy for me. However, I found after having my first daughter, in those first few months, I was at a loss and full of questions. “How can I keep her entertained, how am I going to make sure that what I’m doing benefits her development. What do I do with her when she isn’t crying, pooping or sleeping?” We got through, we had fun but it was really only when she was two years old and we attended our first Gymboree class that I realised there was something I had been missing all along. Our first class was all about butterflies. We used scarves as wings and flew around the made MARCH / APRIL 2015

room. We curled ourselves up into tiny cocoons. With some encouragement and after watching a few others have a go, we climbed up the giant inflatable air-log like caterpillars and when we got to the top, we shouted “We did it!!” We danced to the Gymbo dance like no one was watching. And no one was, because everyone else was doing the same. It was fantastic fun for her and truly amazing for me. I realised I had to be willing to let myself be silly, dance and sing and immerse myself in her truly fantastic world. Because I am my child’s most important play partner, I had to remember how to play. It’s not easy to do this when you are a proper grown up, with a career, a mortgage and grownup worries; it was a big leap for me. But I did it. I played, I did it more and more and I fell in love with my daughters and I loved what play had given us. Guess what, I am still a proper grown-up, I can have grown up conversations and make grownup decisions. I still have a mortgage. But I now have another skill; and I am a fabulous Bullseye the Horse from Toy Story. n By Cath Hammond, Gymboree Bristol

Fun and Fabulous Birthday Parties for Under 5s!




REVIEWED BY Robert Irvine


hen my wife announced that we were off to MacDonald’s later that night and pleaded that I be home at a reasonable hour from work to pack my bag, I admit to momentary bemusement and slight confusion. Usually they’re the guys that give you a bag, with your meal in it…a Happy Meal? My glaikit look had the desired effect and my wife elaborated that the MacDonald’s being referred to was the hotel group, and this was our long awaited weekend break in one of my favourite areas of Scotland, at their Aviemore Resort. The car was rammed to the gills and off we set on our Highland adventure. Two and a half hours later and at least a dozen ‘are we there yet dad’ from our ten year old and soon-to-be five year old, we arrived at the main MacDonald Aviemore Resort. The first thing that struck me was how big the complex was. It’s made up of four hotels; 18 woodland lodges; a leisure centre, complete with fun pool and flumes; 3D cinema and theatre; conference centre; shopping centre and all are amply served by numerous restaurants and places to eat and drink. We were in heaven! At check-in the hotel staff members were brilliant


at informing us of all the activities available over the coming days and we left reception armed with our Family Passport, which allows you to pre-plan activities, such as the cinema. We had booked a family room in the 98 bed Highland hotel, all of which are four star and had recently been refurbished to a very plush standard. Our family room was just fabulous. It was more like two rooms conjoined rather than one big room, with two single beds for the boys, complete with en-suite bathroom and more importantly, their very own flat screen TV! Our first challenges of the evening were to decide which of the numerous restaurants to dine in, and which of the activities would keep us occupied the following day. Decisions, decisions! We were in no particular rush, so we settled down in front of the log fire at the bar to enjoy a drink and plan our attack. With a choice of Italian at Giovanni’s, a hot buffet at the Spey Valley Carvery, Aspects restaurant and bar, or some prime meat at the Scottish Steak Club, we decided to take the short trip over the road to sample the highly recommended Steak Club. The Steak Club is actually situated out with


the main resort complex at the Spey Valley Golf & Country Club, but don’t let this put you off. It’s a five minute drive and if you let the hotel know of your plans they will shuttle you there and back in one of the hotel mini-buses, allowing mum and dad free to enjoy a drink or two. And how glad were we that we did just that! From the moment we arrived we were treated like kings. Some chilled fizz was already on ice and helped us to take in all that the very attentive restaurant manager was telling us, so after my sons had chosen from the wonderful kids menu, it was mum and dad’s turn to indulge. Fresh scallops was an easy decision from the specials board and when our waiter arrived to show us the cut of fore-rib beef before it was cooked our eyes lit up like saucers. After listening intently to the styles of wines that my wife and I both like, our host came up with some suggested titles that would complement the food perfectly. A sumptuous peachy New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc helped wash down the scallops, but what was to follow for the beef course will live with

us forever. The most juicy, plump and scrumptious of any Argentinian Malbec you are ever likely to enjoy. It was simple stunning and really did compliment what was already first class food. And it was thumbs up from the boys too as they sped through their icecream course in order to get to the pool table in the TV room. After all that we still had the nerve to turn up for breakfast the next morning and eat more food. To give us energy for all the planned activities, of course! With the weather being a bit grey and dreich the vote was cast that we should go for a swim first and this would also give us the chance to have a nosy at the newest addition to the leisure club, the Activity Centre. This new attraction is great news for everyone as it offers a wonderful range of activities for all ages of kids to get involved in, whilst parents can go and do adult things with a bit of P&Q. There are three sessions on offer, from 9:30am 12:30pm; 1:30pm - 4:30pm and 6:00pm till 9:00pm

[The Activity Centre] offers a wonderful range of activities for all ages of kids

made MARCH / APRIL 2015



and prices start at a creditable £8 per session. Activities are split into suitable age groups and cover things like craft works; face painting; design a cupcake, children’s bingo; games consoles or just running around letting off steam. We collected our towels from the leisure reception and headed to the pool for some fun with the wave machine and the overhead flumes. Then a quick shot in the games room and a short walk over to the carvery for lunch. Afterwards the weather was still looking unconvincing so we didn’t venture too far and booked seats for the afternoon showing of Paddington Bear. The cinema, which is also a theatre, is an impressive 600 seat auditorium with 3D screens on offer, which was way beyond what we had anticipated. It was then pasta and pizza all round at Giovanni’s before retiring to our room to plan the following day’s itinerary. The heavyweight curtains were drawn at 7am to reveal a nice dusting of the white stuff and it was still snowing. That put a spring in our step, so after another hearty breakfast we raced to the car and set off up towards Cairngorm Mountain and to the Reindeer Centre near Glenmore Lodge. The short drive up was picture postcard stuff with snow lined conifers and the white tops of the Cairngorm range as a breath-taking backdrop. The reindeer Centre is an ideal outing for the kids as it offers them the chance to see and learn about the semi-wild reindeer of the Cairngorm


Wildlife Park. Every few weeks the rangers heard up a small group of the reindeer and walk them down off the mountain for some TLC at the centre. The rangers are only too happy to tell you all about the reindeer they look after and know each one by name. Not bad when you consider there are several hundred of them in the heard up on the mountain. You even get to feed the reindeer with their favourite snack…. lichen! Now, we were in the mood for snow and lots of it, so after learning about the habits of our reindeer, we decided to go and join them up the hill at the Cairngorm visitor centre. If you have never been, you really should book yourself a trip up the mountain on the Funicular Railway, which takes you from the visitor car park, right up to the highest café in the UK, the Ptarmigan Restaurant, which is just off the summit of Cairngorm at some 3,300 ft. Don’t forget your hat if you wish to poke your head out at the viewing platform, it can get a tad breezy! We only had two days at our Aviemore Resort, but what a cracking two days it was. The MacDonald Aviemore is a wonderful familyfriendly resort. The rooms are excellent, the staff very friendly and always eager to offer help and advice to make your stay as enjoyable as possible, and the food is top notch. I’ve probably already said enough about the wine! n

Fancy a break... • The train station is only a 5 min walk from the hotel, so don’t worry if you don’t drive. • The outdoor centre at Landmark is just a few miles away. • There are numerous golf courses nearby and if you fancy fishing, pop into the Rothiemurcus Fishery at the edge of Aviemore. • Sailing on Loch Inch or a visit to the Wildlife Safari Park in the summer months are also well worth visiting. Aviemore Highland Resort, Aviemore, Inverness-shire PH22 1PN Tel: 01479 815100

drama for the early years

CLASSES the PARENT/CbyHILD “doing” and what better way to “do” than through LEARN

Suitable for 2-5 years. andtoemotiona , social “do” l skills way developi drama, what better world andpersonal ”, ng by “doing learn en of Childr world around ing themes, relationships, and the the way! along by explor than ts environment! Each week parenmission you in a creative and fun to a on adven jungle of the nt ture! filled fun or IMAGINE you are a pirate or king a differe can watch their child participate in save the rainbow…let your imagination take

you everywhere!

ns across Edinburgh. Classes running in various locatio to 10. all your senses £50 forusing 5 orsmells… EXPLORE sounds, words, actions, Classes cost £27.50 for a block of e! adventur filled fun each through takeayou FREE TRIAL now. Book

Royal Academy of Dance Graded and Vocational Ballet. Tap • Modern • Hip Hop

filled session. We offer fun a 45 minute for AND ARY only £6UP are GRO PRIM classes Weekly , PLAY SERY NUR a 5 week block can choose ! You bookings s for block 10 age to excellent discount up n SCHOOL CLASSES for childre for £50. Booking is essential as spaces for only £27.50 or 10 weeks

Call 0131 661 9590 or visit


A-Star Sports offers inclusive, developmental multi-sports coaching for children. Our holiday clubs focus on a highenergy combination of games, sports and all round active entertainment for children aged 3+. Building on a fun ABCbased programme (agility, balance and co-ordination), your child will be introduced to and develop the skills for a broad range of sports: A-Star Sports offers inclusive, developmental multi-sports  Basketball  Hockey coaching for children. focus on a high CricketOur holiday clubs  Rounders energy combination of games, sports all round active  Dodgeball  and Rugby entertainment for  children Football aged 3+. Building Tennis on a fun ABCbased programme (agility, balance and co-ordination), your  Handball  Volleyball

child willPlus beadditional introduced to and develop the skills for a in broad activities inspired by sport in the news range ofcelebration sports: of sporting events around the world that keep us sporty grown-ups gripped!  Basketball  Hockey With group sizes and step-by-step support in a positive  small Cricket  Rounders environment, your child will have memorable multi-sports  Dodgeball  a Rugby experience.  Football  Tennis  Handball  Volleyball


Plus additional activities inspired by sport in the news in celebration of sporting events around the world that keep us sporty grown-ups Dates: gripped! Tuesday 7th – Friday 10th April

Time: 9am tillstep-by-step 1pm With small group sizes and support in a positive Venue: Reidwill Memorial Church, multi-sports West Savile Terrace, EH9 3HY environment, your child have a memorable Price: £16 per day (payable in advance). Bookings being taken now! experience. For more information and to book your child’s place at our Easter Holiday Club contact Brian on 07876 021073 /


Dates: Time: Venue: Price:

FREE TRIAL! ges for children aged 2-6

forsyour along and packa Come theme stic are limited. IES Fanta PART

A-Star Sports, Edinburgh South & East, Midlothian and East Lothian @AStarSports_UK Tuesday 7th – Friday 10th April 9am till 1pm Reid Memorial Church, West Savile Terrace, EH9 3HY £16 per day (payable in advance). Bookings being taken now!

For more information and to book your child’s place at our Easter Holiday Club contact Brian on 07876 021073 /


Tuesday 7th – Friday 10th April


9am till 1pm


Reid Memorial Church, West Savile Terrace, EH9 3HY


£16 per day (payable in advance). Bookings being taken now!








Spring Fresh Skin

This fresh spring look of glowing skin was inspired by the Spring/ Summer 2015 catwalk. A sophisticated and easily achievable look which is perfect for busy working mums who want to revitalise tired skin. To complete this beautiful look, a key trend colour of coral was used on the lips, which pops beautifully against the blue blouse. Make-Up Artist, Colette Casher explains how she achieved this on-trend look:


Prep the skin with a moisturiser, followed by a primer to both the face and eyelids.

2. Using a cream highlighter, apply it to the

bridge of the nose, cheekbones, brow bone and above the cupids bow.

PRO TIP The highlighter used was Illamasqua’s Gleam Highlighter, and when using this product, ensure to buff it onto the back of the hand first with a flat foundation brush before applying.

3. Apply foundation to the face. 48






Mac Lasting Sensation Lip Pencil, £12.50 Mac Vegas Volt Lipstick, £15.50 Illamasqua Gleam Highlighter in Aurora, £20.00

4. Where required, concealer of a similar shade to the

foundation should be applied, such as on the undereye area and on any blemishes, blending well.

5. Using an angled blusher brush, apply blusher to the apple of the cheeks, sweeping lightly across the cheekbone to blend.

6. Set by gently patting a little loose powder down the T-Zone. 7. Groom the brows by brushing. For any sparse areas, fill

in as necessary with a brow pencil or powder, then brush through again to soften and blend.

8. Apply a creamy beige eyeshadow across the eyelids. Then apply a pale coral eyeshadow to the crease of the eyes and halfway along the lower lash. For definition, apply a medium to dark brown eyeshadow to the outer corners, blending up into the crease and along the lower lash.

9. Across the top lash line, apply black eyeliner as close as possible to the lashes, finishing with a flick at the outer corners.

10. Apply a coat of black mascara to both the top and bottom

Find out more… If you would like to learn how to apply make-up, choose the correct shades for your colouring or even change the way you do your make-up after becoming a busy mum, Colette offers make-up lessons with helpful hints and tips of the trade. Colette also offers a make-up service for special occasions, weddings, bridal tutorials and video & photo shoots (including maternity, family portraits and business headshots). For more info, contact Colette: M: 07766 243 432, E:, FB: colettecasher makeupartistry,


11. To complete the look, line the lips with a coral lip liner and apply a matching coral lipstick to the lips.

made MARCH / APRIL 2015



Jojo! Trust

Got a child related problem and need some advice? Look no further! Comedian, JoJo Sutherland, is on hand to help. Send your problems to


Filming has wrapped up and you’ll be able to see me in all my glorious hideousness about July time, on the internet, for free! No, I’m not sure how that works either but I’m trying to embrace technology and apparently that there internet is the future. I still prefer the traditional (some say old fashioned) approach to life. I like the landline; pen and paper wins every time, and what’s wrong with actually meeting people in the flesh? My children laugh out loud, sorry LOL, at my inability to work a mobile and I am literally banned from trying to operate the television because I manage to disable everything whilst merely trying to change channels. Apparently I can’t even be trusted to even turn the TV on! What they don’t know is I genuinely have no idea how to! With so much online activity, it’s hard to keep tabs on what my kids are up to, although I’ve discovered my eldest daughter is a master hacker and can get access to all the sites my youngest one uses – it’s the modern day equivalent of reading someone’s diary and I’m fine with that. I’m also fine with being friends with her on Facebook, she doesn’t know that of course, she thinks I’m 12 and called Katy.


Dear Jojo, My 6 year old son refuses to have a bath, what should I do? Jaqueline, Tollcross Dear Jaqueline Let him smell? He will soon get the message when other kids refuse to play with him cos he’s stinky. A bit of dirt never did anyone any harm. Maybe you’re trying to get him to bath too often? Try setting up a rewards scheme and make sure there are interesting things for him to play with in the bath – non electrical obviously, his PlayStation might be his favourite thing, but trust me, they don’t work afterwards.











personalised art for children

a and Edinburgh Fitness Zumb

Insanity Classes

now running!

Handmade lil dresses, accessories and more.

Zumba with Nadia is no ordinary exercise class,

21st & 22nd March

Call for a one hour session please call:

07960 439032

it’s a PARTY!

Classes in Morningside and Craiglockhart Facebook: Edinburgh Zumba Studio visits by appointment.

Alloa 07931 629686 @lilbubbathings


Call 07455 261828 Email: made MARCH / APRIL 2015

Headshot Sessions


@23 Mitchell Street, Edinburgh, Midlothian EH6 7BD Buzz 1st floor Nest events upon arrival. 4 x headshots at £60 (4 outfit changes)


Crafty Cooks South Edinburgh

Small friendly cooking classes for children aged 2½+ Contact Judith on 07891 743684 to book your half price taster class 51



Sat 4 & Sun 5 April KING’S THEATRE

Mon 6 & Tue 7 April FESTIVAL THEATRE



Sat 11 & Sun 12 July KING’S THEATRE

BOX OFFICE 0131 529 6000 |

MADE (Mums and Dads Edinburgh) Mar/Apr 2015  

All the latest news and events for families in and around Edinburgh. Includes Christmas gift guide, top festive theatre and much more

MADE (Mums and Dads Edinburgh) Mar/Apr 2015  

All the latest news and events for families in and around Edinburgh. Includes Christmas gift guide, top festive theatre and much more