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TIPS e-newsletter 27

::::: June 2012 :::::

:::::: Issue ::::::

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Time to celebrate all things British!

facebook logo Like us on Facebook – visit the TIPS Ltd Facebook page: we publish news (including competitions!), information and advice for parents and professionals regularly.

With the Queen's Diamond Jubilee and the London 2012 Olympics coming up we thought we'd join the rest of the UK and get into a celebratory mood. Michael has even designed a patriotic e-newsletter banner with the Union Jack background and Olympic rings with swimming TIPS® ducks! Our British theme continues in our Top Value feature with a chance to win a year's supply of Mornflake 100% British porridge oats. In our featured events we have two Special Edition Rosie Diamond Jubilee Dolls to give away and two special edition sets of our favourite card game from Carddies.

We are very excited about our  e-newsletter competition which offers you the chance to win a Karcher Steam Cleaner worth £260! Perfect cleaning solution if your children have allergies.

Check out our delightful  TIPS Testers' photos including a very special 4D scan and two sets of adorable twins. Maybe you have photos of your own you would like to share with us? Remember we're always on the lookout for these - and I will send a dedicated copy of my book (Breastfeeding: the essential guide) to the sender of each photo we publish.

We feature The Birth Team website (www.thebirthteam.com). Parents-to-be can purchase private care packages ranging from a one-off home visit right up to a full package that include the first scan, antenatal, birth and postnatal care. The Birth Team experts are on-call 24/7. This is an excellent service for anyone wishing to opt for private maternity care.

We also feature the Little Blue Zebra website (www.littlebluezebra.com) which offers the perfect gift solution for children of all ages: prints of illustrations by award-winning children's book illustrator John Butler.

We have reviewed 2 books for you.  Which? Made Easy: Photo Editing explains how to get the best from your digital photos.  The Blossom Method ™by Vivien Sabel is the inspirational parenting book that everyone is talking about. This wee gem introduces us to a revolutionary way of understanding the language of newborns. In fact I was so impressed with The Blossom Method™ that I have decided to award it a TIPS Must-have.

Our featured products are: 3 Shea Mooti products (Mamas Belly Rub Stretch Mark Oil, Baby's Pure Shea Butter Soap and Mamas Everything Body Balm), 2 Halos N Horns products (Halos N Horns Gentle Bubble Bath and Body Wash and Halos N Horns Baby Moisturising Lotion), Weleda Nursing Oil, ViraSoothe Chickenpox Relief Cooling Gel and Organic Babies Mum and Baby Rescue Balm.

As well as our regular mix of featured  app, charityeventsarticlevideo clip and  Top Tips.  Our latest  My Story follows Vivien Sabel's journey on the road to publication of  The Blossom Method™, one of our featured books. Last but not least, we know you will enjoy reading part 10 of our Diary of a Student Midwife (delayed slightly due to last minute exams but coming soon...).

Don't forget to check out our 11  mini-competitions with a total prize value of over £550! Email your entries and you too could be a winner.

Remember if you are not 'in' you can't win!

 


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Dedicated advice line:

 

  • You can contact me on my Greatvine Speak Now number: 09064006215* if I am unable to answer immediately, I promise to call you back.
  • You can also contact me on the Prima Baby/BabyExpert one-to-one advice line at: 09061949915*
  • Press and Media: If you are looking for expert advice on midwifery related topics you can also call me on my advice line.
*£1.50/min from a BT landline. Calls from Mobiles and other networks may vary.

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tipsducktipsduck Featured app:: Good Sandwich Pilgrim App tipsducktipsduck

Pilgrims Choice Launches app with kids' recipes

Available from iTunes - Cost: FREE!

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The delicious cheese brand Pilgrims Choice have launched a new smartphone app called 'Good Sandwich Pilgrim'. With this app users can really get the inspiration to put the 'glam' and fun back into their sandwich. This app should help you make the most of the existing contents in your fridge by simply helping you find a recipe that suits your mood. When you find one that's particularly tasty, add it to your favourites list for easy reference in the future or share with friends.

It's not just plain bread that's on offer though, The app gives ideas and tips for using interesting breads, wraps and fillings that you may not even have considered for a sandwich. You can even upload your own sandwiches to show off your own mighty bite.

FREE to download from the app store the 'Good Sandwich Pilgrim' app has over 100 expertly selected recipes to suit your every mood, taste and sandwich occasion. To help narrow things down just select a category (for example 'Cheese') and a range of Pilgrims Choice cheese related sandwich recipes appears immediately. Other categories are available, including Kids' Lunchbox, Glamwiches, Speedy, Cheap Eats, Healthy, Veggie and Sweet Tooth.

Here are some must try kids' recipes:

  • CHEDDAR, TOMATO AND OLIVE LADYBIRD- Open ladybird sandwich with cheddar, baby tomato, black olives and lettuce
  • GRATED APPLE AND CHEESE- Baguette filled with grated apple and cheddar
  • CHEDDAR AND CHUTNEY CROQUE MONSIEUR- Ham, cheddar and chutney sandwich toasted with a sprinkle of melted cheese

You can find a list of recipes and more information online, visit www.goodsandwichpilgrim.com.

You can also see step-by-step guide to using the app - making it easy for even technophobes! View the video clip on You Tube...

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tipsducktipsduck Featured charity :: Living Paintings tipsducktipsduck

 

Living Paintings - www.livingpaintings.org

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Living Paintings is an award-winning charity that supports blind and partially sighted people of all ages. It is also the Highclere Society's 2012 chosen charity.

Feature written by Christine Leah (Member of Highclere Society)

Living Paintings create 'Touch to See' books with raised pictures that come to life when fingers feel them. These tactile books include soundtracks that tell the pictures stories, guide the fingertips across the raised images, and describe what is being touched, felt and 'seen'. These soundtracks and are often recorded by well known voices. The 'Touch to See' books cover a wide variety of topics: children's stories, to science, history, famous works of art, nature, gardens and many more. Membership of the 'Touch to See' library is free – every book is loaned and posted out free and returned to the library free. There are nearly 10,000 members - including over 500 schools.

Here is an account of Christine's visit to Living Paintings in Kingsclere on 9 February 2012.

I was given a very warm welcome by fundraiser Rachel Kent and we entered a very large library that holds an enormous number of packs, all clearly labelled and filed chronologically and neatly on racks. Here I was introduced to two very dedicated ladies, Liz and Mary who despatch the packs and also check them when they are returned– ensuring everything is in order. Both these ladies have been volunteers for over 6 years. They also talk to library members and enjoy being able to help answer any questions. Royal Mail provides free postage for the library. This is very much appreciated by members and of course by Living Paintings. Alas, should the Royal Mail be unable to continue with this generous help, the impact on the charity does not bear thinking about but the word 'catastrophic' comes to mind.

In the library I saw a large board showing many letters from people who raised funds, simply because they want to help. Every donation is gratefully received and acknowledged – I saw a letter from a little girl who had made some cakes and sent in £5 – all so heart warming.

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Here is Camilla Oldland with Jodie, who is testing and enjoying 'Mole's Sunrise' (see picture above right).

How 'Touch to See' books are produced:

I then met Production Manager Liz Davies who very enthusiastically explained the main processes needed to produce a pack – this can take 9 months. That's when I began to fully appreciate how much work is involved:

 

  • Brailling - Before funding is secured a variety of books are selected (often as a result of members 'requests) and brailled to make sure they are suitable to adapt. Usually, about 23 copies of each book are produced in a combination of Braille Grades 1 and 2.
  • Line Drawings –3 characters and/or scenes are usually chosen to be used for the raised 'touchy' pictures. These are then drawn as simple line drawings to let the carver create the images.
  • Master Art Work - the line drawings are used to create a relief of the image – this is often carved in wood.
  • Script Writing - a volunteer script writer writes the audio descriptions of the illustrations and touchy pictures.
  • Colour Selection – when completed the master artworks are produced on plastic sheets and painted.
  • Draft Recording & VI Edit – A draft copy of the complete book is prepared and tested by one of the visually impaired editors.
  • Post VI Edit –any suggested changes are considered and the recording edited accordingly.
  • Painting –the plastic sheets are cut and hole punched; mostly painted by postal painters who work from home.
  • Recording – Readers are chosen so that their voice is right for the script. The recording may be done in Kingsclere or London. A sound engineer edits the audio recording, and adds music or sound effects.
  • Final Assembly - When the paintings are complete, the CDs ready and the books brailled, the Living Pictures 'Touch to See' books are assembled.

 

During a quick break for a cup of tea, I was lucky to meet Chief Executive Camilla Oldland - daughter of the late Alison Oldland, who founded Living Paintings some 23 years ago. I was interested to hear that there are only 5 full-time and 5 part-time employees but 200 volunteers, of which 52 are in-house.

Here, proudly displayed, I saw several images and comments written by many famous people e.g. Timothy West, Su Pollard, and Jim Carter (Mr Carson of Downton Abbey) to name but a few, who have given their time and their voices to narrate on the CDs in the packs.

Where it all happens...

I briefly saw the recording studio but as work was in progress, we moved swiftly into the production room where more magic was taking place.

In the production room Rachel introduced me to Ken who was carefully carving figures in wood. Then I saw how Ken's craftsmanship was put to great use: his wooden template was put in a press, covered with a plastic sheet and 'hey presto' raised figures appeared in the plastic sheet ready for painting.

In the same room several lady volunteers were very busy painting raised figures on plastic sheets. Each paint colour is specially selected to ensure it matches the original picture book. Humbrol enamel paints are used as they work very well on plastic and are very durable. I was amazed at how precise and accurate the colour match was to the original book. This was not due to luck but the result of patience and perseverance. You may wonder why such attention is paid to the painting - I must confess this was my thought at first. Rachel then explained how sighted and partially sighted people, often siblings, can enjoy the colours whilst also looking at the books.

Rachel then showed me a complete assembled pack.  So much care and consideration had been put into producing something so very special, because everyone involved knows  what a huge difference it can make to the lives of so many who deserve to share our sighted world.

Throughout my visit I was struck by the determination, dedication and sincerity of everyone I met. I was at Living Paintings for over 1½ hours but it went by in a flash. I felt privileged to be part of this amazing charity.

How can we make sure this amazing work carries on?

The pleasure Living Paintings packs provide is enormous but funds are constantly needed to keep on providing this very special library service. Government cuts have intensified competition for grants from Trusts and Foundations - one of the main sources of income for Living Paintings.

Without funds from donations like our Society this incredible service would come to an end. I hope you will agree that Living Paintings is a very worthy charity and I hope you will support the events that we, as a Society, will be organising over the coming months and beyond.

The Highclere Society fundraising events!

Saturday24 March 2012 - Living Paintings presented Indigo Rock at the O2. This fundraising event included performances by many celebrities, including Julian Fellows – creator of Downton Abbey, and Jim Carter   (Mr Carson to most of us!). An amazing £5,500 was raised for Living Paintings!

Sunday 27 May 2012 - 7pm   (Highclere Village Hall) - Concert by Watership Cantabile. With their Musical Director, David Holland, this local mixed-voice choir sing a wide variety of music from all over the world. Based in Newbury, they have performed many concerts in the surrounding area. This is their debut in Highclere.

Alison Clarke and her guide dog Pascha represents Living Paintings at this event. Alison has been blind since the age of 28 and has been one of Living Paintings valued library members since it began over 20 years ago.  Alison will say a few words at the Concert.

  • For information about the invaluable work of Living Pictures or if you feel you can help in any way contact Rachel Kent on 01635 299771 or see www.livingpaintings.org

 

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tipsducktipsduck Featured product :: Many congratulations to our latest TIPS Award winners on their well deserved winstipsduck tipsduck

Shea Mooti products got 3 awards

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'Editor's choice' award for their Mamas Belly Rub Stretch Mark Oil with an excellent formulation. Read the full review here...

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'Must-have' award for their Baby's Pure Shea Butter Soap - gorgeous! Read the full review here...

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'Must-have' award for their Mamas Everything Body Balm - it really does do what it says! Read the full review here...

 

Halos N Horns products got 2 awards

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'Highly commended' award for their Gentle Bubble Bath and Body Wash. Read the full review here...

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'Highly commended' award for their Baby Moisturising Lotion. Read the full review here...

 

Weleda get 1 award

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'Must-have' award for their gorgeous Nursing oil. Read the full review here...

Organic Babies get 1 award

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'Must-have' award for their Mum and Baby Rescue Balm (in our Breast Treatments category). Read the full review here...

Care ViraSoothe get 1 award

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'Must-have' award for their Chickenpox Relief Cooling Gel. Read the full review here...

 


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For a chance to win 1 of 2 gift sets containing a selection of our recent TIPS Award winning skincare products check out mini-competition 6


tipsduck:: Featured tipsducktipsducktipsduck websites tipsducktipsducktipsduck

The Birth Team
– a private option for maternity care
Website: www.thebirthteam.com

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What makes good maternity services?

Every Mum should get good, supportive pregnancy and birth care. Every Mum should get all the information and advice she needs to be able to make the right decision about her maternity care, with the help of highly experienced health professionals.   Sadly, not every Mum gets the care she deserves.  There are many reasons for this: childbirth has become medicalised and NHS cutbacks mean that maternity services are often overstretched.

Watford Hospital Midwife Sarah Denning and Senior Consultant Obstetrician Richard Sheridan wanted to offer Mums the maternity are they deserve.  As a practising midwife, Sarah had become acutely aware that some NHS maternity services and some private pregnancy care were lacking. Unfortunately, sometimes getting private consultant care means excellent medical care but not much else!

Sarah decided to carry out in-depth research with parents. She asked lots of pregnant women and their families what they wanted from the maternity services. This showed that parents want to see the same health professionals throughout pregnancy and birth, to get reliable information and have round the clock access to these experts to answer  any questions or problems that may arise.

In 2004, Sarah and Richard Sheridan began working together to develop a new seamless maternity service. In 2008 The Birth Team name was born.

The Birth Team provides many services, including normal birth, caesarean section, hypnobirth, osteopathy, reflexology, acupuncture, birth preparation, baby and child resuscitation training, continuity of breastfeeding support, vaginal birth after caesarean (vbac) classes, counselling, diabetic and medical care in pregnancy and scanning. The Birth Team can look after women from their first scan at 7-8 weeks, antenatal appointments, antenatal classes, through to labour and birth. Once home with their baby, Mums can continue to receive care from a Birth Team community midwife for up to three weeks, and also have their six week postnatal check with the team.

The Birth Team provide one-to-one care in a relaxed and family-friendly environment. Normal birth is the norm. The Birth Team have received many positive testimonials from happy parents who felt they 'owned' their birth, whatever choices they made. Some families have returned to The Birth Team again and again for subsequent pregnancies.  Women come to The Birth Team from all over the South-East of England as well as various international destinations. Helping parents have a childbirth experience that is memorable for all the right reasons is what The Birth Team want to achieve. This supportive service helps parents have an enjoyable pregnancy, a good birth experience and the best start for a confident early parenthood.

 


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    For a chance to winjute carrier with a Birth Team duck check out mini-competition 9

     

     

    Little Blue Zebra – www.littlebluezebra.com

     

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    Little Blue Zebra is a recently launched family run business specialising in beautifully illustrated baby animal pictures for little ones. They sell high quality giclée prints of illustrations by award-winning children's book illustrator John Butler. John has illustrated over 60 books with baby animal artworks enjoyed by children all over the world.

    Little Blue Zebra was co-founded by John's daughters, Lucy Downes and Joanna Fisher. "Since we were very young, we've enjoyed watching our father's illustrations come to life, from early sketches to finished picture books that have delighted and enthralled children all over the world. Now mothers ourselves, and having been inspired by our father's work when decorating our own children's nurseries, we set up Little Blue Zebra so that these adorable illustrations can be enjoyed as prints for your children or as gifts for friends and family."

    Little Blue Zebra's range of alphabet, number, letter and animal prints are both educational and attractive. They are the perfect choice for parents looking to decorate their own baby's nursery, child's bedroom or playroom. They are also a perfect gift!

    Each illustration is printed on 300gsm natural white Hahnemühle paper made from eco-friendly sugar cane and is available either framed or unframed.

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    For a chance to winframed print of an adorable pig worth £48 check out mini-competition 10

    tipsduckFeatured article ::  Travelling with babies and children by Sharon Trotter

    Baby Hampshire, Baby London & Baby Surrey Magazine – in association with Greatvine.com

    Summer 2012 issue 
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    Summer is just around the corner (we hope!) and many of you will be planning a variety of trips. We all know what a stressful time this can be.

    I have been travelling with my own babies and children for many years and just thought I would share my hints and tips for stress free journeys with your little and not-so-little ones.

    These travel FAQs are featured in the patriotic summer issues of the following magazines:

    They are also available in the for parents section of the TIPS website.

    For individual advice you can contact me at: www.greatvine.com/sharon-trotter

     

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    tipsducktipsduck:: book reviews  :: :: tipsducktipsduck

    The Blossom Method™ - The Revolutionary Way to Communicate With Your Baby from Birth by Vivien Sabel
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    Published on June 7 2012 by: Vermillion ISBN: 9780091947538 RRP: £7.99

    Vivien Sabel is a registered Psychotherapist. Her first book The Blossom Method™ - The Revolutionary Way To Communicate With Your Baby From Birth describes the communication method she has developed. For more information about The Blossom Method™ go to www.viviensabel.com

     

    Review by Sharon Trotter

    The Blossom Method™ will become an international bestseller!

    I have never made such a prediction about any book before but then this is no ordinary book. Its message is simple enough: observe, mirror and respond to your baby's non-verbal clues and you can learn to better understand their language.

    Vivien Sabel was the third and last child of a non-signing deaf mother (an inspiration in her own right). This taught Vivien to recognise the subtleties of non-verbal communication instinctively. Vivien used these skills to communicate with her baby daughter Blossom who was born in 2004. Vivien went on to research this very topic for many years, observing many newborns' ways of communicating: tongue-talking, body-talk, eye gaze and simple signing.  When Vivien tried to discuss her findings with other new parents she was surprised to find out that they were not already using this simple system of communication to 'talk' to their babies. So she decided to share her tips with us all in a book. Professionals and parents were quick to praise Vivien's book and after dozens of enthusiastic reviews from many parenting experts around the world a publishing deal soon followed (you can follow Vivien's inspirational journey to publication in our latest My Story).

    Named after her daughter, The Blossom Method™ will help everyone better understand baby language. Once you understand a baby, you can quickly learn to speak back and respond to their needs before they become distressed. What Vivien describes is so simple and so obvious that you may wonder why we have not heard about this before. In fact, this is nothing new. Babies have been 'talking' to us since time began but maybe we have lost the ability to fully tune into their language, especially in the fast-paced world we live in. The Blossom Method™ will help us all re-learn our babies' non-verbal signs. This is sure to greatly reduce stress for all parents!

    A few years ago I was asked to review the Dunstan Baby Language DVD (www.dunstanbaby.com). The concept is similar to The Blossom Method™ but the Dunstan Baby Language lists five common baby sounds as the basis of a communication system. The Blossom Method™ identifies many more communication clues for parents, including baby talk, leg kicking and even the smell of baby's breath. Understanding and responding to these clues can greatly increase the bond with your baby who in turn will feel more secure and self-confident.

    The Blossom Method™ clearly explains how to observe, mirror and respond to your baby. It also provides various testimonials from parents who have used The Blossom Method™ to deal with a number of parenting issues like constipation, early signs of illness and early potty training.

    Where this book proves to be a real gem is in its relaxed tone and non-judgemental advice. Anyone who reads this book can become a better parent or carer – you can't say fairer than that!

    I am so impressed with The Blossom Method™ that I have decided to award it a TIPS Must-have.

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    For a chance to win 1 of 2 copies of The Blossom Method™ check out mini-competition 1

     

    Photo Editing Made Easy

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    Edited by Lynn Wright - Published by Which? (31 Jan 2012)

    ISBN: 1844901319 - RRP: £8.99 from www.which.co.uk

    We all want to take great pictures of our children but sometimes our snaps need a little bit of touching up. With Photo Editing Made Easy you might just be able to turn your pictures into something really special.

    It provides step-by-step tutorials showing you how to edit photos on your PC with Adobe Photoshop Elements 8. Find out how to create perfect family shots and flattering portraits from less-than-perfect photos. If all this inspires you to get creative, the book also explains how to work with filters, apply lighting effects, restore old photographs and even make a pop art-style portrait. As well as tips to correct some common problems, including red eye and poor lighting, you will also learn how to change colours to improve your images.

    Review by James (TIPS Tester and keen photographer)

    My first impression of this book is that it is a good quality publication with plenty of colour photos and illustrations. It is aimed at first-time and novice users of Photoshop Elements 8.

    Information in this book follows a logical order. The first part is about the basic, frequently used tools such as cropping, fixing red-eye and adjusting photos for email. It provides clear step-by-step instructions and photos on how to do this. It then moves onto image editing and more detailed corrections and adjustments, while still keeping its clear informative structure.

    I read this book from the point of view of a novice user of Photoshop Elements 8. Although I was familiar with most of what was covered, I still found this book useful and informative in all areas. I feel this would make a good reference text to support the Elements user, even encouraging them to delve a little deeper into the many tools Elements offers.

    The only topics I would have liked to see covered in a little more detail are fidelity loss when saving JPEGs and possibly the use of RAW images.

    In summary, this book delivers good, clear instructions and advice for beginners and novice users of Photoshop Elements 8, or similar software, and at a fair price too.

     

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    For a chance to win 1 of 2 copies of  Which? Photo editing made easy check out mini-competition 2


    tipsducktipsduck3 Featured :: events tipsducktipsduck

    The Queen's Diamond Jubilee weekend – introducing Rosie, the Jubilee Princess

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    To mark the Queen's Diamond Jubilee here is a patriotic doll for your very own little princess.

    Fulanitos, the popular brand from Mexico, continues to inspire and entertain girls around the world. This summer the beloved brand launches a special edition character called Rosie to celebrate the Queen's Diamond Jubilee.

    Set to win the hearts of little girls everywhere this plush doll is the perfect companion for any Diamond Jubilee celebration. All Fulanitos characters encourage imaginative play.

    Their innocent and enchanting features make them a firm favourite with parents who grew up playing with dolls.

    Each Fulanitos character has its own distinct personality and that's what makes children around the world fall in love with them. They are designed exclusively by Fulanitos founder Gaby whose charming drawings translate perfectly into plush dolls and other merchandise.

    Memorable Memento

    Rosie has a soft body and is perfect for cuddling. She makes the perfect Diamond Jubilee memento but girls will play with Rosie time and time again as they make up their own memories long after the Diamond Jubilee has passed by. Rosie is available in a bright and bold design as well as a softer pastel design, and comes with or without a tiara.

    You can buy Rosie for just £14.50 from the Fulanitos website.

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    For a chance to win 1 of 2 Rosies Jubilee Princess dolls check out mini-competition 3


    Carddies

    RRP: £8.99

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    Special editions of London and Sports Carddies sets to celebrate the Diamond Jubilee and the London 2012 Olympics

    Raquel and Esther, creators of award-winning UK made toy Carddies launch two new sets: Carddies London and Carddies Sports. Carddies will inspire children to enjoy this year's celebration of Britain through traditional, creative fun. To find out more about Carddies check out the review in our December newsletter.

    Carddies London features iconic and familiar symbols and characters of London. With its London backdrop, Queen and corgi, London Bobby, Grenadier Guard, a Beefeater and many more other characters this game will keep children entertained on sunny days out or rainy days in.

    Children will love the hand-drawn sports people in Carddies Sports. They will be able to colour in many characters, including a rower, a basketball player, a show jumper, a wheelchair racer and play with them against a stadium backdrop complete with cheering crowd – can they spot the hidden dog?


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    For a chance to win 1 of 2 sets of  the new Carddies check out mini-competition 4

    Séraphine Maternity wear

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    Celebrating ten years of award winning maternity wear...

    Séraphine celebrates its tenth anniversary in 2012. This world leading maternity fashion brand was founded by Parisian designer and stylist Cecile Reinaud. The brand started as a specialist boutique in London's Kensington offering expertly-designed denim, dresses, nightwear, lingerie, swimwear and accessories. Ten years on,  it's a multi award-winning brand with over 200 items of maternity wear available in 40 countries, from some of the world's most prestigious department stores, international etail sites and London boutiques. You can also buy directly from their website www.seraphine.com

    This year Séraphine have received three awards at Pregnancy & Birth magazine's Bloom awards for Best Maternity Jeans, Best Office Wear and Best Evening Wear. No wonder this brand has an A-list following including Angelina Jolie, January Jones, Claudia Schiffer, Jessica Alba and Kate Hudson. Séraphine have just launched their exclusive Luxe collection – a covetable range of red carpet-ready occasion wear and bridal dresses, created in sumptuous fabrics; designed to be true investment pieces, wearable throughout pregnancy and beyond. This could prove cost-effective if you are having your first baby and have plans to add to your family.

    Founder Cecile Reinaud says:

    "I created Séraphine with the intent of designing gorgeous clothes that celebrate the beautiful change in your life experienced during pregnancy. Having experienced problems with traditional 'frumpy' maternity-specific clothes, I wanted to create styles that not only make women look and feel glamorous during pregnancy but also transition effortlessly into your wardrobe post-birth"

    Séraphine have kindly offered one lucky winner the chance to win £75 to spend online (www.seraphine.com) on items of your choice from this lovely range of maternity products.



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    For a chance to win a £75 Séraphine voucher check out mini-competition 5

    tipsducktipsduckFeatured video clip :: 7 adorable ways to get baby to sleep... tipsducktipsduck

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    If you're a new parent then you know without a doubt that your baby is the cutest, most perfect and adorable human being in the world. But being a new parent doesn't come without its challenges. This video shows the creative techniques used by real moms to get their babies to go to sleep. Whether it is a staring contest (which does the trick for Hiroe's daughter, Saya) or the sound of a hair dryer (for baby Kian, which leaves mom Jeanine with some 'me' time), this video shares some unique tricks moms have up their sleeves to give their baby the best start in life. Let us know if any of these tricks work for you, or let us know about your tips at www.facebook.com/philipsavent

    Like The Blossom Method™ book we have reviewed this video shows how important it is to observe, mirror and respond to our babies' needs - especially when it comes to finding a natural way to help baby settle to sleep.

    Watch this adorable clip here...

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    tipsducktipsduckDiary of a Student Midwife :: Part 10 tipsducktipsduck

    In this instalment of 'Diary of a Student Midwife' our student midwife has finally reached the end of her university lectures and midwifery placements.  We follow her as she experiences her last placement in the community. This includes looking after a caseload of parents which is both exciting and exhausting.  The pressures of juggling family life and study are taking their toll but the end is in sight. This is also the start of the process to full autonomy as a fully qualified midwife. It is unsure whether our student will secure a job at the end of her training but we wish her well and look forward to the very last instalment in September when we plan to reveal the identity of our author! 

    Read The Diary here...


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    tipsducktipsduckFeatured My Story :: the road to publication tipsducktipsduck

    Our My Story follows Vivien Sabel's journey on the road to publication of her book The Blossom Method™. It starts with a touching account of her experience as the daughter of a deaf non-signing mother. This taught Vivien to recognise and understand non-verbal communication instinctively. When she gave birth to her own daughter Vivien used these skills to better understand and communicate with her baby. This lead to years of research working closely with other parents and babies. The resulting book is nothing short of revolutionary! You can read the book review here

     



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    tipsducktipsducke-newsletter competition :: Kärcher Steam Cleanertipsducktipsduck

    Win a new Kärcher Steam Cleaner worth £259.99!


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    We've teamed up with cleaning specialist Kärcher to offer one winner the new Steam Cleaner SC 4.100C worth £259.99.

    Designed to clean deeper without chemicals,  Kärcher Steam Cleaners allow you to clean almost any surface in a matter of seconds.

    The Kärcher Steam Cleaner works by releasing bursts of high temperature steam that penetrate microscopic spaces and lift and remove dirt particles from the surface. This natural and environmentally-friendly cleaning method does away with scrubbing, and with the use of chemicals that may aggravate allergies and be especially harmful to children.

    If you'd like to find out more you can visit www.karcher.co.uk or call 01295 752 200 to find your nearest stockist.

    Review of Kärcher Steam Cleaner SC 2.500C by Sharon Trotter:

    I tested the slightly cheaper SC 2.500C Steam Cleaner (RRP: £229). This is basically the same as the SC 4.100C except for the colour and the fact that it does not have a window scraper attachment. I have a  Kärcher vacuum cleaner so the steam cleaner seemed familiar to me. Kärcher appliances are easy to use and come with excellent instructions. Like my vacuum cleaner, the steam cleaner is extremely efficient and easy to use. It can be used to clean floors, walls, chrome (including taps and showers), granite tops, upvc and plastic windows, ovens and hobs, as well as mattresses, carpets and upholstery.

    Due to the high temperature, a steam cleaner is ideal for removing germs, viruses, bacteria and mould. It will also kill bed and dust mites and their eggs - this is really helpful for people with allergies and asthma.

    The steam cleaner is reallysimple to use: just fill up the water tank, turn on and as soon as the light stays, just steam clean away with the various attachments. In fact it is child's play: although with the very high temperature of the steam, emitted at very high pressure, be sure to keep well away from children!

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    For a chance to win a Kärcher Steam Cleaner email the word 'Karcher' to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it by 25 August 2012. We will announce the winner in e-newsletter 28

    tipsducktipsduck*** latest news ***tipsducktipsduck

    Care.com is now in the UK

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    Founded in Boston by Shelia Marcelo in 2006, Care.com is the online network that took American families by storm. It is now available in the UK.  Care.com is the place to go if you need a babysitter, nanny, childminder, care for older people, a pet sitter or help with housekeeping - or indeed if you are a carer looking for work. Thousands of carers have already signed up to Care.com's UK site and families who need all types of carers have been able to access this growing network.

    A trained and dedicated team reviews all carer profiles for suspicious and inappropriate content. Care.com also provides members with secure messaging, reference checking services, and advice on how to interview and hire carers.

    Visit Care.com website to find out more. Go to: uk.care.com

     


     

    Rhinolast Allergy

    5ml – Nasal Spray for hayfever sufferers RRP: £3.99

    Available from Independent chemists and www.chemist.net

    product

    It's that time of year again and if, like me, you suffer from hayfever, you might find this product useful.

    Rhinolast Allergy is a fast-working, pocket sized, steroid-free daily nasal spray for hayfever sufferers. It is available over the counter.  Rhinolast Allergy effectively relieves the symptoms of hayfever and other allergies that cause itching, runny nose, sneezing and blocked-up nose.

    Rhinolast Allergy starts working within 15 minutes and each dose works for up to 12 hours. It does not cause drowsiness and is suitable for children from the age of five. Containing the active ingredient azelastine, Rhinolast Allergy is the only anti-histamine with a triple mode of action, managing the disease and not just the symptoms.

    To use Rhinolast Allergy, simply tilt your head forward and spray once into each nostril twice daily.

    Rhinolast Allergy is effective even after symptoms have appeared, so it's good to keep it handy - in case your allergies flare up.

     


    and...

    We need a volunteer ... to review a book for the next newsletter

    book cover

    If you'd like to review Beautiful Buggy Walks in England please email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it - the Reviewer will of course get to keep the review copy! You can find out more about this book online: go to www.beautifulbuggywalks.co.uk

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    tipsducktipsduck :: TIPS top value :: Mornflake Organic Oats ::tipsducktipsduck

     

    product photo

     

    Just 99p in my local Morrisons supermarket!

    As part of our patriotic theme we have found you a healthy and tasty treat. Mornflake Organic Oats are 100% British oats, grown, milled and packed in Britain. The Union Jack special edition box was launched last year to highlight Mornflake's British heritage and support for this great British crop. Mornflake have decided to keep using this branding in 2012 to mark the Olympics and Diamond Jubilee events this year.

    With oat milling expertise dating back to 1675, Morning Foods is Europe's premier oatmiller. Located in the heart of Cheshire this centre of excellence is committed to quality at all levels of production. This independent company has won many International Gold Medals for the quality, purity and consistency of their products, year after year...

    We have a year's supply of Mornflake Organic British Oats to give away (that's 12 boxes!).

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    For a chance to win a year's supply of Mornflake Organic British Oats to give away (that's 12 boxes!) check out mini-competition 8

    tipsducktipsduck :: TIPS top treat:: Hats My Baby::tipsducktipsduck

    www.hatsmybaby.co.uk - Hats My Baby

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    Hats My Baby is a family-run online bout ique full of cute and funky baby hats and accessories – simple as that! Here you will find baby hats for all occasions: winter hats, sun hats, premature baby hats, hats with ears, berries, cupcake hats hand-knitted in the UK, and many more!

    To have a look at this amazing collection of delightful hats on the Hats My Baby website go to www.hatsmybaby.co.uk

     

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    For a chance to win an Arabella Miller organic cotton baby hat size 0-3 months check out mini-competition 7


    tipsducktipsduck :: TIPS top tips ::tipsducktipsduck

    The Book Club www.thebookclub.co.uk

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    Charlie Jones founded The Book Club in February 2012. Charlie has a BA honours in Linguistics and Phonetics and a Masters from Cambridge University, where he achieved a high distinction in Linguistics. He spent many years working on Child Language Acquisition before developing the concept for The Book Club.

    The Book Club helps parents make the most of every book they read with their child. It's packed with language tips and members receive emails with tips appropriate for their child's age.

    As well as writing for the press, Charlie is currently working on a project to classify the linguistic DNA of over 3,000 children's books.

    Because he understands what makes a book harder, or easier, for children to read, Charlie will be able to grade children's books. This will help parents choose books that their children will enjoy and understand.

    Charlie is currently writing a book to help parents understand their child's language development from birth to 4 years old.

     


    Airport Parking & Hotels - www.aph.com

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    Although many of the events surrounding the Queen's Diamond Jubilee and the London 2012 Olympics are happening in and around London, there will be a lot happening in many other cities.

    Long stay airport parking specialist Airport Parking and Hotels (APH), have published tips to help people escape the crowds and make the most out of their trips. Read the Top Tips for Brits Looking to Escape Olympic Fever online - go to www.aph.com/escapeolympics

     


    Gurmtree - www.gumtree.com

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    Top tips for Gummy Mummies

    Gumtree.com is like a local online notice board. It helps 13.7 million people across the UK buy, sell, find or swap cars, jobs, property, day-to-day stuff and services in their neighbourhoods. If you sign up for Gumtree Daily deals you could save up to 75% on local deals.

    When two becomes three (or four, or even five) your little bundles of joy will often leave you spending much bigger bundles of cash. Luckily Gumtree has bargains galore for maternity wear, toys, childcare and so much more!


    www.whatcontraceptiveareyou.com.au

    - Although this is an Australian website, the information and advice provided is useful for all women

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    Starting birth control... hey help me choose the right method of contraception for me!

    Whatever stage of life you are at, if you're having sex and don't want to get pregnant you need to choose the right contraception method for you!

    Contraception is an important part of life so it's important to choose a contraception method that suits your body and lifestyle. Several methods of contraception are available, ranging from daily contraception to non-daily or long-term reversible contraception.

    What Contraceptive Are You? has information to help you talk to health professionals about the best contraception option for you. The website tells you about contraceptive choices, contraception myths, your cycle and includes frequently asked questions.

    So just complete the free online survey, check out your contraceptive options and find a local family planning clinic or make a contraception appointment with your GP now!

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    Dedicated advice lines :
    • You can contact me on my Greatvine Speak Now number: 09064006215* if I am unable to answer immediately, I promise to call you back.
    • You can also contact me on the Prima Baby/BabyExpert one-to-one advice line at: 09061949915*
    • Press and Media: If you are looking for expert advice on midwifery related topics you can also call me on my advice line.
    *£1.50/min from a BT landline. Calls from Mobiles and other networks may vary.

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    In this issue...

    - article

    - app

    - books

    - charity

    - events

    - products

    - top value

    - top treat

    - video clip

    - websites

    regular features...

    - advice line

    - Diary of a student
    midwife


    - My Story

    - latest news

    - TIPS Testers' pix!

    - main competition

    - mini competitions

    - competition winners

    - Babycare - back to
    basics


    - TIPS top tips

    TIPS baby

    photo

    Here is a delightful picture of baby Leonora taken just after a breast feed – from the smile on her face we are pretty sure she enjoyed her lunch!
    TIPS baby 2

    phto

    Here is the first of our twin pictures featuring baby Brodie and baby Elliot sound asleep aaaawwww!
    TIPS bump

    eNews27-bump1

    Here is a lovely bump modelled by Leyla just a few weeks before giving birth to little Aidan. If you want to read more about Leyla's adventures in motherhood check out her website

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    TIPS bump 2 - 4D scan

    scan

    Here is the most incredible view of a soon-to-be-born TIPS Tester! This photo was taken at 30 weeks gestation. We look forward to seeing this wee bundle in person in our next newsletter!
    TIPS toddler

    photo

    Here is a wee stunner called Maria who is travelling to Brazil to visit her grandparents – hope you have a wonderful holiday!.
    TIPS family

    photo

    Here is a very proud daddy cuddling his twin boys (our featured babies) Brodie and Elliot.
    TIPS breastfeeder

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    Toby is keeping a close eye on his mummy as he enjoys a relaxing breastfeed
    TIPS breastfeeder 2

    photo

    We will be featuring a My Story written by the mum of these sleepy twins in our next TIPS e-newsletter. This was taken when her boys were a few weeks old. Mum has since had a baby girl and she is presently feeding all three children – super mum or what?!
    TIPS babywearer

    photo

    Here is Toby (our featured breastfeeder) snuggled up close with his Mum on a beautiful beach in Guernsey in the Channel Islands..

    TIPS babywearer 2

    photo

    Baby Mohammed is enjoying a trip on the London underground tucked up safe and warm next to Mummy.
    TIPS prize winner!

    photo

    Here is Izzy making friends with her new friend Notalie™, the tween doll she won in our December 2011 e-newsletter.
    Babycare – back to basics™ leaflet (version 8) out now

    leaflet

    Version 8 of this award-winning leaflet is hot off the press. It is distributed around the UK at various professional and parenting events. Health professionals and maternity units can buy hard copies – email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
    This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
    for more information. As well as all the hints and tips you need about baby skincare, skin-to-skin contact and feeding but, this leaflet now includes the latest and safest advice on reducing the risk of cot death. Email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
    This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it if you would like a free copy.

    leaflet

    My Baby Radio - podcasts

    logo

    logo

    mybabyradio.com

    New desktop radio player available! Launched on DAB digital radio in April 2010 - Broadcasting across Cheshire, Staffordshire and North East Wales. Sharon's interviews about breast feeding, tongue-tie, baby skincare, cup feeding, baby baths, cuddle towels, decongestants and much more are broadcast regularly. You can also download them here....

    If you would like to listen to My Baby Radio directly from your desktop, and without visiting the website, you can download the new desktop radio player (you will need to have the latest version of Windows Media Player installed on your PC or laptop). Go to the My Baby Radio website to get the player.

    logo

    TIPS competitions
    facebook logoLike us on Facebook

    If you are on Facebook and want to take the opportunity to enter all 12 TIPS competitions in 1 go all you have to do is:

    • 'Like' us on Facebook
    • Email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
      This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it and say you wish to enter the e-newsletter competitions -  remember to include your name and address in the message so we know where to send your prize(s)
    • Check out the list of winners in our next e-newsletter – it could be you!
    main competition

    eNews27-main

    For a chance to win the Karcher Steam Cleaner email the word  'Karcher' to  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
    This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it by 25 August 2012. We will announce the winner in e-newsletter 28

    eNews27-maina

    mini- competition 1

    eNews27-mini1

    For a chance to win 1 of 2 copies of Vivien's book email the words 'The Blossom Method' to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
    This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it by 25 August 2012. We will announce the winner in e-newsletter 28

    book cover

    mini- competition 2

    book cover

    For a chance to win a copy of Which? Photo editing made easy email the word 'Which' to  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
    This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it by 25 August 2012. We will announce the winner in e-newsletter 28

    mini- competition 3

    eNews27-mini3

    For a chance to win 1 of 2 Rosie dolls email the word 'Rosie' to  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
    This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it by 25 August 2012 (remember to say if you would like the bright or the pastel Rosie, with or without a tiara). We will announce the winner in e-newsletter 28

    mini- competition 4

    illustration

    For a chance to win a set of Carddies London or Carddies Sports email the word 'Carddies' to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
    This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it by 25 August 2012 (remember to say whether you would like the London or Sports set). We will announce the winner in e-newsletter 28

    mini- competition 5

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    For a chance to win a £75 Séraphine voucher to spend online email the word 'Séraphine' to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
    This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it by 25 August 2012. We will announce the winner in e-newsletter 28

    mini- competition 6

    eNews27-mini6

    For a chance to win 1 of 2 gift sets containing a selection of our recent TIPS Award winning skincare products email the words 'TIPS Gift Set' to   This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
    This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it by 25 August 2012. We will announce the winner in e-newsletter 28

    mini- competition 7

    illustration

    For a chance to win an Arabella Miller organic cotton baby hat worth £6.99 email the words 'Hats My Baby' to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
    This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it by 25 August 2012. We will announce the winner in e-newsletter 28

    mini- competition 8

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    For a chance to win a year's supply of Morflake British Oats (you can share them with friends and family!), email the word 'Mornflake' to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
    This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it by 25 August 2012. We will announce the winner in e-newsletter 28

    mini- competition 9

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    For a chance to win a jute shopper containing a Birth Team duck email the words 'The Birth Team' to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
    This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it by 25 August 2012. We will announce the winner in e-newsletter 28

    mini- competition 10

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    For a chance to win a framed print of the adorable pig pictured above email the words 'Little Blue Zebra' to  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
    This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it by 25 August 2012. We will announce the winner in e-newsletter 28

    mini- competition 11

    illustration

     

    Little Tikes Counting Cash Register

    Suitable for age 2+

    RRP: £14.99 www.littletikes.co.uk

    The Counting Cash Register helps children learn to count and provides hours of role play fun.  Kids have to match colour, size and numbers of the multi-coloured coins. The coins have to go in the correct holes and kids can watch them drop. The stacked coins drop into the drawer with one swipe of the credit card. Then kids just pull the handle to open the drawer and remove the coins.

    Ideal for shopping or banking role play games, the Counting Cash Register has a built in change dispenser for extra play value. It also comes with 1 credit card, 2 red coins, 3 blue coins and 4 yellow coins.  It is suitable for children over 2 years old.

    Kids will have plenty of fun with the Counting Cash Register. For mum and dad, this quality toy is excellent value for money as it offers years of use.

    You can download summer book of fun here!

    illustration

    For a chance to win a Counting Cash Register, email the words 'Little Tikes' to  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
    This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it by 25 August 2012. We will announce the winner in e-newsletter 28

     

    TIPS winners...

     

    mini-competitions

    The lucky winner of the Dear Zoo Noisy book is Soshanna from London

     

     



    The 4 lucky winners of the Jackson Reece baby wipes and Nose Nuzzles are Darren from Cambridgeshire, Rachel from East Sussex, Munira from London and Natalija from Lancashire

     



    The 10 lucky winners of a Doidy cup and Bickiepegs teething biscuits are Eileen from StaffordshireStacey from Suffolk, Stella from Greece, Natalie from xxx, Sarah from West Sussex, Alison from Lanarkshire, Corina from Gloucestershire, Pamela from Ayrshire, Natalija from Lancashire and Helen from West Midlands

     



    The lucky winner of the book Bella Bee painting is Jo for her friend in Cyprus

     


     

    The 2 lucky winners of the Hold it Mama books are Pip from Kent and Alison from Gloucestershire

     


     

    The 2 lucky winners of the sets of Weleda Ratanhia mouthwash and toothpaste are Annabel from London
    and Stacey from Suffolk

     

     

     


     

     

    The lucky winner of the Quack Quack Moo Maxi git is Kate from Cheshire

     



    The 2 lucky winners of the Sure Shut PushLoc safety gates are Darren from Cambridgeshire and Amanda from Greater Manchester

     



    The lucky winner of the book Woman on the edge is Amanda from Somerset

     



    The lucky winner of the Aquasolari washable bed pas is Stacey from Suffolk

     



    The lucky winner of the Boobie Buddies doll set is Subha from Surrey

     

     

     


     

    e-newsletter competition

    The 4 lucky winners of the Picaloulou Beanies are Rebecca from Northamptonshire, Lorna from Lanarskhire, Sarah from Hertfordshire and Victoria from Guernsey

     

     


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