Friday, 17 April 2015

Cannizaro Park: Wimbledon's Best Kept Secret

If you are not a Wimbledon resident, 
chances are you don't know about the existence 
of one of London's most lovely gardens 
with a strange Italian name.

Cannizaro Park.

A Mum in London

Cannizaro Park was named after the Duke of Cannizaro, 
who once owned the magnificent house and its gardens. 

The 18th century house has a rich history 
having hosted famous writers,
 like Oscar Wilde and Henry James,
and royalty {King George III used to take his breakfast there}.

The Cannizaro house is now a hotel and restaurant, 
with a lovely cafe overlooking the gardens 
{perfect for a summer brunch with the family}.

A Mum in London

The Grade II listed Park,  
which boasts a rare collection of plants, 
became a public park and first opened for the public in 1949. 

It covers 35 acres and has several pathways 
for everyone to enjoy the park 
{some of them are buggy/wheelchair accessible}.

What is stunning is the variety 
of different areas and gardens within Cannizaro Park:  
the wild woodland, the manicured Italian gardens, 
the herb garden, the pond, the meadow. 

A Mum in London

Cannizaro Park is the perfect place 
for escaping London within London,  
and for enjoying nature in all its glory.

Head there on a warm spring day, 
have a big walk to see the trees and blooming azaleas, 
and then lay a picnic blanket on the lawn. 

I can assure you, 
life can't get any brighter than that!


Cannizaro Park, West Side Common, Wimbledon, SW19 - nearest Tube station is Wimbledon.
Open all year round from 08:00 to dusk.
Free entrance.

Wednesday, 8 April 2015

Five Star Bed: the Silk Duvet

I can do without a lot of things. 
A good night's sleep ain't one of them. 
It's what makes or breaks my day. 

And since my rest is dependent on the little one's sleep, 
I don't take any chances when it comes 
to choosing pillows, bedding and duvets... 

...and making his bed as cosy, healthy and inviting as possible. 

A Mum in London

Baby's Five Star Bed

1. Go Natural 
Choose bedding, duvets and pillows made from natural fibres, 
like pure cotton, wool and silk. 
Natural fibres reduce the risks of allergies and asthma 
and provide a healthy cocoon for your little one. 

2. Get the Right Duvet 
Children can wake up a lot during the night 
if they are too cold or too hot in their beds. 
So choosing the right duvet according to the room's temperature 
is very important for a comfortable night's sleep.

{for room temperatures between 16-22°C, 
a medium fill duvet (autumn-spring) should be just right}

3. Be Light 
Contrary to popular belief, 
layers and heavy bedding won't provide a good night's sleep. 
Bedding should be lightweight and comfortable 
for the child to be able to move freely without feeling squashed. 

A Mum in London

The Mulberry Silk Duvet

Silk Bedding Direct recently sent us a mulberry silk cotbed duvet to try 
and I can safely say I was amazed at its quality, softness & lushness 
{the Toddler declared he loves the new "veeeery soft blanket"}. 

Filled with top grade 100% mulberry silk strands 
{each duvet has a little zipped compartment for you to touch and check the silk}, 
this hand sewn and finished duvet comes in a super soft cotton sateen casing 
and is definitively the best duvet money can buy. 

Mulberry silk is regarded as the best quality in the world 
and has amazing benefits over other types of bedding: 
it's hypoallergenic, self regulates temperature and naturally drapes, 
and it's totally clean as dust mites and fungus cannot live in mulberry silk. 

Plus, the silk's amino acids and sericin protein 
nourish and protect your hair and skin as you sleep 
{might have to persuade Mr K to invest in a king sized one for us}! 

Cotbed sized silk duvet (150 x 120 cm) from £75 (sale price).
See the whole range of mulberry silk filled duvets at www.silkbeddingdirect.com and take advantage of their spring offers. Worldwide shipping.

In association with

Friday, 20 March 2015

The Value of Money: Talking to Children about Money

Is it OK to talk to children about money? 

When do children start developing money habits 
and who influences them? 

How much pocket money should a child receive? 

A Mum in London
Image via
Money is never an easy conversational subject, 
especially with children, 
as demonstrated by a recent research 
by Money Advice Service, 
a government backed organisation 
offering people free & impartial money advice. 

In the research, 58% of parents admit 
struggling to talk to their children about money, 
even though they recognise the importance of doing so. 

One of the main reasons behind that 
is that children should not have to worry about money. 

But leaving this important discussion until too late 
can impede the development of budgeting & saving skills. 

Thanks to the research, we now know that children 
start developing money habits by age of seven; 
receiving a reasonable amount of pocket money at regular intervals 
helps children understand how to manage money.

Child psychologist Dr Elizabeth Kilbey offers five tips 
on talking money with children:

1. Subtly integrate it into the child’s life: 
when you go shopping, let your child make a choice between two items 
so they understand they can’t have it all.

2. It’s never too young to start:
Children shouldn’t have to worry about family finances, 
but you can help them understand money without doing this.

3. Be confident. 

4. Have a go
Money is a very practical subject and children can be very hands on learners. 
Find ways for your children to handle and use money whenever possible 
and having pocket money can be a great way of doing this. 
In younger children, role play can be used, 
for example playing ‘shop’ using pretend money. 

5. It’s OK to make a few mistakes: 
It's how we all learn.
It's far better for children to be making mistakes with little or no consequences 
than them facing bigger money issues when they are older. 

~ ~ ~

You can read more about this very interesting research 
and get advice about budgeting and money management 
at the Money Advice Service website 
or watch the online videos for more advice.

Friday, 13 March 2015

Art for All: Battersea Affordable Art Fair

Every year, the quirky Battersea Park becomes the place 
where art is celebrated in its most democratic form... 

It's {high} time for another edition of the Affordable Art Fair
which showcases original artworks from over 1,100 artists, 
ranging from paintings and prints to sculptures and photography. 

And with prices from £100 to £5000, 
everyone can access art, whatever the budget.  

A Mum in London
'Pisces', Malika Favre, Outline Editions
The Art Fair is very family friendly, 
welcoming the little visitors 
with an array of activities and artist-led workshops
{don't forget to pick up a free activities pack}

Plus, they have an Outstanding Ofsted rated crèche on site 
for you to browse the galleries in peace.

The Affordable Art Fair will be opened until this Sunday 15 March, 
{hint, hint: this print would make a perfect Mother's Day present}.

Affordable Art Fair Battersea, 12- 15 March 2015, opening hours: 11.00am – 6.00pm
Ticket prices: £10 - £20 (Children under 16 go free)
Closest Tube station: Sloane Square and then take the complimentary shuttle bus to the fair

Friday, 27 February 2015

Paros Island with Children

Looking for a place to spend the summer holidays with the kids? 

A place that combines warm weather, beautiful beaches, 
fun for the little ones and a relaxing factor for parents?

Look no more. 

There is an island that ticks all those boxes: 
Paros island in Greece is the ideal destination 
for a family-friendly relaxing holiday.

A Mum in London

Island Facts

Paros is situated in the centre of the Aegean Sea, 
in the Cyclades complex. 

You can reach the island by ferry or high-speed boat 
from Piraeus in under 3 hours. 

Paros is a popular summer destination for families, 
especially Greeks and Italians. 

Due to its central location, 
Paros is ideal for island-hopping 
 {tip: take the ferry to Antiparos, Naxos and Schoinoussa}.

A Mum in London
A Parian holiday

Beaches 
Paros boasts many beautiful beaches, 
perfect for families with children of all ages. 

Head to the famous Kolibithres {left photo below} 
for its shallow crystal clear waters and amazing rock formations, 
to Farangas for its golden sand and brilliant beach bar 
or to Golden Beach & Punda for some windsurfing. 

Villages 
Paros' most picturesque village is Naoussa {right photo above}: 
a former fishermen's village with a Venetian fortress.
{tip: enjoy a romantic dinner at the old harbour}. 

In Paroikia, the island's capital, 
you can visit the archaeological museum, a 6th century church 
and catch a glimpse of a traditional windmill.

Lefkes is a mountain village with a traditional square 
{left photo above}, where time seems to have stopped. 
Take a seat at the square's kafeneio and order some mezze  
{they are absolutely delicious}.


Antiparos 

Last but not least, 
Tom Hank's favourite summer destination: Antiparos

The tiny island with the superb beaches and unspoilt landscape, 
is just a 10 minute ferry trip from Paros. 

Plan a day trip there with the children, 
you won't regret it.


Paros Island, official page
A list of Paros best beaches (you'll be spoilt for choice)
We stayed at the Chroma Hotel in Naoussa and were very happy with our stay
See ferry timetables, connections, and prices here
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