Category Archives: useful advice for parents

I haven’t forgotten Mothers Day!!!! (my wife is sorting it out)

A few years ago whilst discussing Mothers Day with a friend he said exactly that! “my wife sorts out that kind of thing, and has our 2 mums covered” When asked if he had sorted out anything for his wife (new mum to twins) his face was a picture! “Oooohhh Nooooo I didn’t think about that he said”!

Some may say its all just commercial trollop, and yes some shops can make it seem like that sometimes but it really is a day to just thank mums and remember all they do for us. Life is so hectic alot of the time and time stops for no-one but is very precious so I hope Mothers Day for all you mums out there is a day which suits you down to the ground whatever it may be.

Why don’t you leave me a comment on what would be your perfect Mothers Day treat and I’ll let you know mine!!!!!!!!

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New Opening Hours for Impala Impressions

As a work as home mum, I thought I had the balance right but as Impala goes from strength to strength I’m finding it difficult taking calls at 7.00pm at night and at weekends which is precious time for me to spend with my family. New opening times are found on my website.


Mon – Friday – 9.00am – 3.00pm
Sat – Sunday – Closed

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Filed under baby casting kits, Fantastic gifts, NEWS, personal, useful advice for parents

Baby Boom?

Sorry I haven’t been around for a while, Impala Impressions has gone from strength to strength, with April being the busiest month, which is a fantastic way to celebrate our 3rd Birthday!

We are now offering castings however you want them with any kind of frame you choose, so you get exactly what you want for what is still exceptional value.

I would like to thank all those who have started coming back to Impala Impressions for their 2nd baby casts for new siblings that have joined the family, it’s fantastic to meet you again and also see your first borns 3 years on!

Don’t forget to check out our website:

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Keep Full Maternity in Maidstone Hospital

PLEASE ATTEND THIS MEETING – THIS IS A MESSAGE FROM THE KEEP FULL MATERNITY IN MAIDSTONE GROUP ON FACEBOOK – http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=157082878695

On Friday, Feb 19, at 9.30am, Kent County Council are meeting to decide whether they should ask the Government to intervene and try and stop the Health bosses downgrading Maidstone maternity. This is a public meeting SO PLEASE PLEASE COME ALONG IF YOU CAN.

The meeting is open to the public. It is in Sessions House – next to County Hall. A good showing of members of the public will really help our cause. I hope you can join me there – Peter Carroll

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Keep Full Maternity in Maidstone

I had my son in Maidstone hospital and although the birth was very unpleasant (who’s isn’t!) it was comforting to know that the hospital facilities were nearby and not over 30 minutes away if not more. I would like to push this blog post and hope that many of you will read it and support the above group – Keep Full Maternity in Maidstone as we need all the help we can get. This is an excerpt of their facebook page –

Many of you may already know of the upcoming plans to cange the maternity care at Maidstone hospital, changing it from a consultant-led scheme, which has on call specialist doctors and units for special care cases to a midwifery led birthing centre, meaning mainly low-risk deliveries will be treated there.

Any pregnancy that would not fit into this “low risk” category, would then have to travel to the new Pembry Hospital when it opens in 2011, meaning increased travel for the mother in… to read more please go to

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Festivities over, snow over, lifecasting begins……….

Hi all, I would like to start by thanking all my customers of 2009 and hope that you all had a fabulous christmas and the New Year has started off well. The snow here was bad for at least 3 weeks, posing difficulties for my home casting visits which were all put on hold until the big thaw, so I am now making my casts with not alot of time to do them!!!!! Since teaming up with Samantha Jones

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Filed under Baby advice, baby casting kits, baby hot topics, Fantastic gifts, lifecasting, NEWS, useful advice for parents

XMAS OFFER ON 3D HAND AND FEET BABY CASTING KITS BY IMPALA IMPRESSIONS

3d baby hand and baby feet casting kit

OVER £10.00 OFF - LIMITED STOCK SO HURRY!

Why miss out on a unique gift for family or friends, whether to give a unique baby feet or baby hand cast to Grandparents, god parents or just that someone really special in your babys life? If you havent’ got one yourself you really are missing out on something that you can keep forever, a 3d cast of your precious daughter or son to remember exactly just how small they really were! Just imagine how big your 18 year old sons feet will be!!!!!!!!!!!!

Stock is limited so don’t um and arhhhh! Make sure you get the Christmas present you REALLY want!

see

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Hop Farm Christmas Market introduces baby casting kits at the weekend

Last weekend saw Impala Impressions selling baby casting kits at the Hop Farm, one of the biggest tourist attractions in the County of Kent. To book tickets click here or ring: 01622 870821.  They have a wonderful Santas Magical Kingdom going on at the moment and all the children and parents I met were having the time of their life.  Although a fairly quiet weekend (considering it was meant to be the busiest shopping weekend of the year!) alot of fun was had with other stall holders.  There were lots of interesting stalls to be found and one in particular, Cupola Potter http://www.cupolapottery.co.uk with really unusual stoneware in 3 distinct styles, all individually handmade and all one off pieces.  The price is good too so have a look! 

Demelza House had the stall next to me and are there until the 24th December, please take the opportunity to visit them, their work with terminally ill children is truly amazing, Demelza supports children and young people who are expected to die before reaching adulthood, and their families. Due to the hereditary nature of many of the children’s illnesses, some families may have more than one affected child. In many cases there is no cure. In others, treatment has been tried but failed and the focus has transferred from active to palliative care.

When a diagnosis is given which offers no hope or where treatment is abandoned, families often feel very isolated and alone in their grief. Many of the conditions from which the children suffer deteriorate slowly over a number of years, placing an enormous strain on family life. Often the child will need constant care throughout the day and night and whilst families willingly invest their total love, energy and attention into caring for their sick child, they can and do become exhausted. Healthy brothers and sisters often feel left out as attention focuses on the sick child.

Children’s hospices provide the necessary short breaks and a range of services benefiting the children and young people themselves and their wider family, which are simply not available elsewhere.  If you could take the time to donate to this fantastic charity please click here http://www.demelza.org.uk

Don’t forget to order your baby casting kits from Impala Impressions this week to guarantee for Christmas http://www.impala-impressions.co.uk

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Annabel Karmel visits Impala Impressions

Annabel Karmel visited Impala Impressions, the baby casting specialists on their stand at The Designer Baby Show. Annabel took time to stop for a publicity photo and also to chat to Justine, founder of Impala Impressions about her new range of casting kits. Annabel did 2 talks at the show on baby nutrition which was also attended by clareByam-Cook, breast and bottle feeding expert to Celebrity mums. Although the show was overshadowed by a lack of footfall, it was a great opportunity to network and mingle with fellow exhibitors and too finally meet all those mums who have set up their own businesses.

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Royal Mail ….Phew for small businesses …………. but it’s only over until after Christmas

As quoted from the BBC:-

The postal strikes have been called off until at least the New Year to allow for fresh talks between Royal Mail and the Communication Workers Union.

TUC general secretary Brendan Barber said the decision had been made to provide “a period of calm” in which the two sides could reach a long-term deal.

He said that meant Royal Mail deliveries would be “free of any disruption” over Christmas.

However Mr Barber said that securing a final deal remained a long way away.

He was speaking after the TUC helped to broker the agreement between the two sides to end the strike action.

The industrial dispute has been over the level of job losses the Royal Mail says are necessary as part of its modernisation plans.

While the CWU accepts that some redundancies are required, the two sides disagree over their extent.

They also disagree over changes to pay and working conditions for Royal Mail staff that remain in their jobs.

‘Work hard’

CWU deputy general secretary Dave Ward said the decision to end the strike action had been unanimously agreed by its executive board.

It’s important that both sides now keep talking about the next phase of modernisation which is vital for the company’s future

Business Secretary Lord Mandelson

What is happening to Royal Mail?
Popular posties?
“We can now have a period of calm where we hope we can genuinely take forward modernisation in a way that puts the union at the centre,” he said.

Yet he added that the union recognised the forthcoming negotiations would be difficult, saying the dispute had been “bitter”.

“It will take exceptional efforts to rebuild trust,” he said. “But we will work very hard to ensure that the agreement stays on track.”

Royal Mail managing director Mark Higson said he now looked forward “to positive and constructive discussions on the next stage of Royal Mail’s modernisation plan”.

“I’m delighted for our customers and our people that we’ve got back to a sensible agreement with the CWU that will allow us to deliver a great Christmas while getting on with the vital talks about the longer term future of Royal Mail,” he added.

Legal action

The CWU also confirmed that it was not now pressing ahead with its legal challenge to the Royal Mail over its policy of employing temporary workers to deal with the postal backlog.

Christmas deliveries will now be unaffected
It had previously been due to go to the High Court on Friday, accusing Royal Mail of using the temporary staff to try to break the strike, something Royal Mail strongly denied.

Mr Ward also issued a fresh plea for the government to help tackle the Royal Mail’s £10bn pension fund deficit, saying that until that problem was dealt with, it would be difficult to overcome the “challenges” ahead.

Although the government owns Royal Mail, it has so far refused to get involved with the pension issue.

‘Keep talking’

Business Secretary Lord Mandelson said he welcomed the news that further strikes had been called off.

“It’s important that both sides now keep talking about the next phase of modernisation which is vital for the company’s future,” he said.

“Strikes do nothing to help Royal Mail, its business, its future prospects and of course the jobs and livelihoods of those who work in Royal Mail.”

Until the latest announcements, CWU members had held five 24-hour strikes over the past two weeks, which involved members in different roles striking on different days.

The strikes that had been planned for Friday and Monday were to be all-out action involving up to 121,000 union members on each day.

What is your reaction to this news? I’d love you to comment!

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Half Term on a budget by guest blogger Gemma Johnson, Co-founder of www.babeecard.com

Half Term on a Budget

Half term is nearly here, and the kids are looking forward to lots of action packed and exciting days out. But how do you balance the budget when it is nearly the end of the month and Christmas is approaching too? In this article you can get some tips for low cost and no cost activities which will keep all the family happy.

Start by making a plan. Write down the days of the week, and make a list of things that the kids have asked to do, appointments you have to attend and ideas that you have.

Free activities include
• Dressing up.
• A walk to the park.
• Exploring the local woods.
• Visiting local attractions with no entry fee. Look in the local paper, local parenting magazine and on the local council website for ideas.
• Visiting the library: ask in advance about free half term activities.
• Getting the children to put on a play. This could be based on their own ideas or a book from the library visit.

Low cost activities
• Giving each child £1 and exploring the local charity shops to see who can get the best toy, book or game
• Baking. Offer the kids the chance to make their own sandwiches, create an indoor picnic or even bake a cake. This need cost no more than your meal would have cost anyway, or you can spend a little extra on some treats.
• You could look at special half term activities put on by local attractions as well as Hallowe’en and fireworks events.

More activities
If your children have great ides about visiting theme parks, buying new DVDs and computer games and lots of meals out, work out in your head how much you have to spend on half term activities. Look for discounts of 10-45% on days out and theme parks offered by cards like BaBeeCard. This card also offers savings on the London Dungeon, paintball and activity camps.

Booking tickets in advance can save you money too: don’t forget to ask if there are good deals for family tickets. If your kids are old enough, give them an idea of the budget for half term activities. This can help them weigh up what they really want to do. It might also cut down on requests for you to buy them things if they know that the ‘half term fun’ money is being saved for a great day out that the whole family can look forward to.

Author note:
Gemma Johnson
Co-founder of

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A mothers Love for her Child

A mothers love for her son

A mothers love for her son

I thought you might like to see the casting i have done of myself and my precious son Ethan, to me no words are necessary as this shows my love for him. I hope you like it!

I have just dropped off four hand lifecasts of an 18, 11 and 7 year old girls and hand and foot cast of their 2 weeks old brother, sorry no piccies but hopefully if I get recent job of cupped hands of an adult to be a garden feature – I’ll definately get some pics of that!

Enjoy !

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Schoolgirl, 16, lost eight fingers in plaster of Paris accident during art lesson

What a complete nightmare story – it just shows that you should never put your hands into plaster to make a mould. Impala Impressions uses Alginate Impression material which is completely safe and produces wonderful results – for more info see the news article attached from The Daily Telegraph.

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Does sleeping with your baby cause cot death – current discussion on BBC radio 2

Just listening to Jeremy Vine, subject Cot Death is caused by sleeping with your baby, putting the onus on the parents – tune in or take a look at the article quoted below.
I would value your comments on this, I personally think there is nothing wrong with sleeping with your baby, I didn’t as he is such a light sleeper he was better in his moses basket but he always come into bed every morning for a cuddle. Do you sleep with your newborn?

Parents’ Drug And Booze Link To Cot Deaths
9:24am UK, Wednesday October 14, 2009

More than half of cot deaths happen when a baby is sleeping with a parent, a study has revealed.
Researchers said this could be linked to the baby’s parent having been drinking or taking drugs.

Despite a dramatic drop in the rate of cot death in the UK since the early 1990s, experts are advising parents to avoid dangerous co-sleeping arrangements.

The study was led by a team of researchers at Bristol and Warwick universities.

They studied all unexpected infant deaths – aged from birth to two years old – in the south west of England from January 2003 to December 2006.

The parents were interviewed shortly after the death and information was collected on alcohol and drug use.

It is really important that parents should not fall asleep with their baby on a sofa as it is very, very dangerous.

Lead author of research Professor Peter Fleming

A detailed investigation of the scene and circumstances of death was also conducted by trained professionals.

Of the 80 cot deaths analysed, more than half (54%) occurred while co-sleeping compared to one-fifth (20%) co-sleeping rate among both control groups.

Much of this risk may be explained by the combination of parental alcohol or drug use prior to co-sleeping (31% compared with 3% random controls), and the high proportion of co-sleeping deaths on a sofa (17% compared with 1% random controls), say the authors.

A fifth of cot death infants were found with a pillow and a quarter were swaddled, suggesting potentially new risk factors emerging.

Lead author Professor Peter Fleming, Professor of Infant Health and Development Physiology at Bristol University, said: “It is really important that parents should not fall asleep with their baby on a sofa as it is very, very dangerous.”

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Please help with my survey!

I would be very grateful if you would take the time to complete the survey – it’s really short!

Click Here to take survey

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Baby Casting Kit – ***NEW*** range

Hi all, after months and months of hard work, I’m pleased to say that my new imprint kits are now online, fantastic gift ideas for christmas or a precious keepsake for Grandparent or relatives. Inkless imprints, Clay Imprint kits (air drying), 3D casting kits and pregnant belly casting kits with a fantastic range of frames – all at very reasonable prices. Please see http://www.impala-impressions.co.uk for details. These are selling fast so get in there early for the most treasured gift for yourself, family or friends.

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Impala Impressions exhibiting at……..

Impala Impressions will be exhibiting at the following events:

Tuesday 29th September 2009
Baby Bea, Mill Yard, West Malling
10.00am – 2.00pm Come along to this wonderful baby boutique and get you baby casting done whilst you are browsing.

Saturday 7th November 2009
NCT Beckenham Christmas Fair – St John’s
2.30pm – 4.30 pm Hall, 251 Eden Park Avenue, Beckenham

Sunday 15th November 2009
The Designer Baby Show –
10.00am – 5.00pm Spirit Conference & Exhibition Centre. Our venue is very close to Windsor & Eton and just off to the M25 (Heathrow) See http://www.thedesignerbabyshow.co.uk for details
For directions click on map

Sunday 22nd November 2009
The Baby Fair – Northampton
10am – 4pm Northampton Saints Rugby Ground See http://www.baby-fair.co.uk/northampton/index.html for details.

Saturday 5th December & Sunday 6th December 2009
The Hop Farm Christmas Market alongside Santas
Magical Kingdom. The Hop Farm Paddock Wood 10.00am – 8.00pm Kent. TN12 6PY. See http://www.thehopfarm.co.uk for details.

Don’t forget to come along to either purchase baby casting kits for wonderful Christmas gifts or get a casting done of your baby on the day (baby bea date and northampton date only)

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A tale of a tail end of a Hurricane in Dorset…!

Off we set on a weeks camping to Longthorns Farm in Wareham, Dorset and were pleasantly suprised at the friendliness and laidbackness of Sally and Mark who let us pitch virtually anywhere we wanted. We chose the tipi field which was very quiet and see photo for the view!

Our view

Our view

We were told by Mark that unfortunately Hurricane Bill had just left America and we were getting the tail end of it! It was a wet week but a fab time was had at Monkey World where they do the most amazing work. Check out their website and why not adopt a monkey? http://www.monkeyworld.org

Orangutan

Orangutan

We took Ethan Mackerel fishing on a boat from Weymouth which was fantastic fun and brought back many memories of my time fishing on the McCombies yacht and we caught loads! We gutted them at the campsite and even our neighbours had some! They were delicious!

You can just see the fish eye in the bottom right of the picture!  Mummy wasn't quick enough with the camera!

You can just see the fish eye in the bottom right of the picture! Mummy wasn't quick enough with the camera!

Despite the wild winds, rain etc we had a fantastic time visiting Lulworth Cove, catching loads of crabs (mackerel as bait is a good tip!), seeing the jousting at Lulworth Castle, taking the steam train past Corfe Castle to Swanage and eating lots of seafood!

I would recommend Dorset to anyone!

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NCT Beckenham and Borders Christmas Fair.

Impala Impression baby casting kits will be exhibiting at the christmas Fair on Saturday 7th November, 2.30pm – 4.30pm @ St John’s Hall, 251 Eden Park Avenue, Beckenham – don’t miss out on mulled wine and mincepies. See http://www.impala-impressions.co.uk for more details.

See you there!

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Top Tip

Wear a brightly coloured top or have a brightly coloured bag when out with your toddler – I have a shocking pink sweatshirt and when I go out shopping or to a play zone, park etc wear it and my little one can always spot me in a second!
Don’t forget to check out Impala Impressions website http://www.impala-impressions.co.uk

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