Essex Mums Newsletter June 2015
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Essex Mums Awards  *   Summer Holidays   *   Father's Day   *   Are you crafty?   *   Meet Ups    *   Product Reviews   *   New on the Shopping Guide   *   Pregnancy & Parenting Articles   *   Recipes   *   Craft Ideas   *   Educational Activities   *   Special Offers   *   Blog   *   Events   *   New Groups & Classes   *   Ad Rates   *    Competitions
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Hello! Summer is here, and the sun is shining... most of the time anyway! I'm sure those of you with school-age children have had a lovely half-term and are wondering how on Earth we are so close to the summer holidays again!

As always, this newsletter is full of some of the great stuff that has been added to the site this month. Look out for a few cross-county events this month as Essex celebrates the beginning of its Summer of Art, with Art Trails and festivals in various towns across the county, and get down on the farm for Open Farm Sunday on the 7th. Hope you enjoy the newsletter!
If you have something you'd like to add to the site, please use one of these buttons to get you there quickly!

“Giving every child such an amazing experience they can’t wait to come back!”
  • Superb Easter & summer camps at 34 locations!
  • Fantastic range of activities for 4.5-16 years
  • The best qualified staff:child ratios for any comparable provider
  • Extended hours from 8am-6pm
  • A Brilliant Childcare Option for Working Parents!
Barracudas, the UK’s No1 children’s activity camp offers peace of mind for working parents during the Easter & summer holidays. We’ve been rated ‘OUTSTANDING’ by Ofsted more times and more consistently than any other activity day camp provider and because we’re registered with Ofsted you have the added bonus of using your childcare vouchers as payment!
Essex Mums Awards
Nominations for the 2015 Essex Mums are still pouring in and at last count you had nominated more than 5000 people, places and things that make your life as a parent in Essex that bit easier or more fun! Nominations will stay open until June 10th so gets yours in soon, just fill in the form here: - the top nine companies with the most nominations will go through to the voting round, as well as last year's winner.

Local businesses, make sure you get the recognition you deserve by sharing the page with your customers and asking them to nominate you!

If you want to see what people voted for last year, take a look at the Essex Mums Loves... section and if you're a company interested in sponsoring the awards, like the lovely businesses below, take a look at the packages on offer here.

The 2015 Essex Mums Awards are sponsored by:
Time For You is one of the longest established and most respected domestic cleaning companies in the UK and have been featured on the BBC “Working Lunch” and supplied cleaners to channel 5 “Cowboy Builders” and channel 4 “Hollywood Me” I have personally been operating in the Essex area for 5 years and have a vast database of professional police checked cleaners who can clean and care for your home. All our cleaners are carefully selected and thoroughly vetted so you can rest assured that your home is totally safe at all times, we are also fully insured for all accidental damage.

Please feel free to check out the testimonials on my website or call for a free no obligation home consultation to discuss your requirements.

For more information please call Trevor on 01245-426382 or text to 07585001362, e-mail

Summer Holidays
I've already added lots of summer holidays activities and events and our summer holidays pages are starting to come together. Make sure you have sent your events over to me at or submit them here.

If you are interested in booking an ad for your business or event on these pages, get in touch. Ads start at just £10 so are a great way of getting the word out! Book through our online bookings page in June to get another ad free! Anyone spending £50 or more also gets an ad on the main summer page totally free of charge!
Father's Day
Looking for a Father's Day gift? Take a look at the Alternative Shopping Guide and Product Guide for some ideas, browse our shop and let us know if you find anything really great!
Are you crafty?
We still need some crafty folk to help us blog about activities to try with your kids for our Arts & Craft section. Whether you have a crafty business or are a parent who just loves glitter, we want to hear your ideas! You can submit your activities here, or if you are interested in becoming a regular contributor, get in touch. All posts will be fully credited with a bit about you (if you wish) and links to your website if appropriate.
As the weather starts to get nicer it would be really nice to have more meet-ups organised across the county. We often have them in the Southend area, and have had a couple of picnics this week but it would be great if there were people in other areas who could take charge of organising things near them. I've asked before and I realise people can be a little shy but in my experience people are often keen to go along to things but a bit hesitant to suggest them themselves, so all it takes is one person who can come up with a few places and dates and I'm sure people will come! Are there any volunteers? 

It would mean posting meet-up ideas in this section which I can then share on facebook too and create events for. Would be lovely if we could have one or two people in each area coming up with some ideas. You can even have a lovely title if we can think of one! Let me know if you're interested!
Opened in March 2015, Millie's Beach Huts offers two fabulous Beach Huts for daily hire in Walton-on-the-Naze Essex.   We are in a brand new private beach side development (with car parking!), just a few steps from toilets and the pier with a fantastic panoramic view of the pier, and of course, the beach.  The kids have plenty of room to play and large decking for you to soak up the sun in our deck chairs whether you rent one hut or both together.   The beach directly in the front of the huts is dog friendly all year round. 

Contact us at or  Limited school holiday and weekend dates available - be quick to secure.

Product Reviews
Want to find out what's worth buying and what's worth missing out on? Where is good to go and where to avoid? Then consult our crack team of Essex Mums product reviewers before making your purchase! Click on each reviewer on the Product Reviews page to see all of their reviews, or click here to browse the reviews or search by categories such as age range and type of product.

Here are the product reviews added this month! 
My daughter Iris turned six a couple of weeks ago and we opted to have a joint birthday party with her friend Suzy. Both share a lot of friends so it seemed a sensible way of splitting the cost and the work and also of taking the pressure off the girls to be the centre of attention. 
Read Louise's full review
Toots Harbour App
Toot The Tiny Tugboat is a television programme on Channel 5’s Milkshake.  It is very popular with pre-schoolers with lots of bright colourful and simple images. The episodes see a small tug boat called Toot carrying out his daily jobs in the busy harbour. 

Read  Jenny's full review
The Cake Pop and Biscuit Stop
If you are in need of tasty treats, The Cake Pop and Biscuit Stop is your place to go! We needed some rainbow biscuits for my daughter’s birthday party and I am not much of a baker and even less of an icer so 40-odd rainbow biccies were way beyond my capabilities! 
Read Louise's full review
Haliborange Multivitamins
My boys tested the Haliborange Multivitamins, we tested both age groups apart from the obvious that one was strawberry flavour and the other was orange I couldn’t work out why one was recommended for 3-7 yr olds and the other was recommended for 3 -12yr olds. 
Read Leanne's full review
New on the Shopping Guide
Looking for great gifts, fairtrade or handmade toys, clothes that are a bit different to what's on the High Street, or just something to treat yourself? You'll find it all and more on the Essex Mums Alternative Shopping Guide! Browse shops on the guide by category, or search the product guide for that perfect buy!  Check out some of the gorgeous new shops added to the Alternative Shopping Guide this month:
If you have a shop you would like to advertise on the Shopping Guide, please get in touch on
Pregnancy & Parenting Articles
The Pregnancy and Parenting section features fantastic information about different aspects of pregnancy and parenting written by our very own Essex Mums: everything from trying for a baby to raising teenagers. This section is a work in progress so check back regularly for new topics.
Signs Your Child Might Need a Tutor
Do you think your child may need some extra support? VAKS has the top signs for parents considering whether their children need a tutor. 
Read more
Famous Kids’ Bedrooms you’ll fall in love with, including one of a future King
If MTV has taught us anything, it’s that a) Spring Break rules and b) we’re all a little bit obsessed with the contents of celebrities’ “cribs”. 
Read more
The Importance of Skin to Skin
Skin to skin contact for newborn babies is one of life’s little acts of magic; an act that can provide a wealth of health and emotional benefits, and an act that can literally induce happiness. 
Read more
27th July 1.30-5.00
Come and learn routines from this amazing show in Jazz, Contemporary, Tap & Modern Theatre from the amazing songs featured in 'Bugsy Malone'. Suitable for all levels.

28th July 1.30-5.00 
Come and explore the show through acting scripts, singing and dance bringing musical theatre scenes to life with the amazing songs featured in 'Bugsy Malone'.

We also have a limited supply of tickets for the Matinee performance of 'Bugsy Malone' Lyric Theatre Hammersmith on Wednesday 29th July 2.30pm show
1 Day Dance or Musical Theatre Workshop -
£22.00 Fusion Members / £43.00 with show ticket
£24.50 Non Members/ £45.50 with show ticket 
***2 Day Workshop Deal*** - 
Book Dance & Musical Theatre Workshops and receive a discount!
£39.00 Fusion  Members/£60 with show ticket 
£44.00 Non Members £65.00 with show ticket 
Email to secure your place
Take a look at our recipes section for some tried-and-tested family-friendly feeds! Do you have something you would like to add to this section? If so, please share it here. If anyone is interested in becoming a regular contributor please get in touch
Sweet Potato and Veggie Curry
Make this in a 6.5L slow cooker. This recipe makes A LOT, eat half freeze half!7

Read Elizabeth's full recipe
Super Healthy Chocolate Lollies
These have up be the healthiest and easiest “Chocolate Ice Lollies” ever!
Read Holly Bell's full recipe here
Slow-Cooked Balsamic Chicken Thighs
Something light and summery for tea – serve with veg or a salad and new potatoes.

Read the full recipe from Slow Cooker Crockpot Recipes
Craft Ideas
Our Craft Ideas section features arts and crafts for children of all ages. Just click on the image to find out how to make it! If you have any ideas, or would like to write a regular feature for this section, please get in touch!
Summer Craft Ideas from Crafty Critters
Summer is a season we typically spend outdoors with all the sunshine. Don’t be fooled, summer still has those rainy days – and some days it’s just TOO hot to be outside. Well, no need to worry about boredom on those days! We have a ton of great summer crafts for kids to keep the little ones busy for hours and hours.
Read more
Meshon Maps
I love this idea, found on and inspired by the illustrator Aaron Meshon. Meshon designs maps, children’s products and editorial illustrations that are quirky, brightly coloured and fun to look at, full of imaginary creatures and hidden details.

Read more 
Educational Activities
Our Educational Activities section features ideas to get your kids learning and help them with their homework. We really need some contributors for this section who can come up with some simple ideas, so if you would like to become a contributor or just have a few suggestions, please post them - anything is welcome, no matter how simple
The Key Jar
My parents babysat a few weeks ago and my Mum played a game with them that she had seen someone share on Facebook. It seemed like such a lovely idea I thought it would be nice to share here too. 
Read more
Minecraft Challenges
Like many parents, I have a computer game obsessed 7 year old and worry constantly about him getting too much screen-time. It’s hard to find the balance between letting them do an activity they enjoy and one which can be creative, imaginative and stimulating, and them becoming pale, twitchy little creatures who have never kicked a football in their lives.
Read more
My name is Jenna; I’m 30 years and a wife and mum to a lovely 5 year old son with a daughter on the way. I was introduced to an amazing opportunity to work from home and have the opportunity to earn a six-figure income.

This business has not made me rich overnight but is an opportunity to achieve whilst working hard and having a positive and motivated mind-set.

If you are looking for a change of lifestyle and to work when and wherever you like I can help YOU.

Call or message me on 07742773499 and add me on FB –

Special Offers
Special offers for Essex Mums added this month!
Princess Pamper Parties
We host beautiful Pamper Parties for your little ladies in the comfort of you own home. 10% off for Essex Mums.
Read more
Caterpillar Music Ilford
10% off a 1 hour Caterpillar Music party if booked before 31st August 2015 

Read more
Essex Muay Thai
Get fit, get the essential basics of self defence covered & have a lot of fun. Come and do a FREE session and see what we can offer you! 
Read more
Falcon Business Supplies
The stationery and office supplies company currently have an offer of £20 worth of M&S vouchers with the first order over £100 when you set up an account with us. 

Read more
Fit For Sport Activity Camps
Fit For Sport run Activity Camps in sites across Essex – they’re full of sports, energetic games and creative fun. We also run Looney Tunes Thursdays, with lots of themed activities. Get 10% off all summer camps.

Read more
The blog features posts from me as well as from guest bloggers, so if you have something you would like to write, please get in touch!
The Big 7 Expenses When You Have A Baby You Really Can’t Avoid
Pregnancy is really tough on your body. Weeks of morning sickness followed by months of back ache. Then come labour and the birth! Babies are tough on your wallet too. Because you’re able to feed them yourself, and baby grows come in multi-packs, it seems a newborn is really cheap to look after.
Read more
Would you like to become a Caterpillar Music class leader?
After 10 enjoyable years of running Caterpillar Music Chelmsford, the time has come for me to steer my career in a new direction.  This means there is a great opportunity for someone to take over Caterpillar Music Chelmsford, run their own business and help new Caterpillars discover the joy of early years music classes.
Read more
Cinderella Summer Workshops

3-18 years
BALLET Workshops
Thursday 30th July 2015
Come and learn the Magic of Classical Ballet through the story, characters and music of Cinderella. Workshops are structured for the age levels set. Suitable for Boys and Girls all abilities.
Age 3-6 years
Fun Workshops
Monday 27th July 2015
10.30 am - 12.30 pm
Tuesday 28th July 2015
10.30 am - 12.30 pm

Discover the Cinderella Magic with Dance, Music, Drama, Basic Make-up & Story telling Arts & Crafts for Prince & Princesses. A Two-hour workshop full of fun.
Email to secure your place
Lots going on this month! You can find full listings on the Things to Do section or search by area using the links below. Make sure you take a look to find fun things to do for your family, and let us know when you try something good. Oh, and remember to say you saw it on Essex Mums!

New Classes and Groups

A selection of new information about classes and groups added this month.  Some are brand new to the site, some just have updates about new venues, details etc. Take a look at the Things to Do section for complete listings.

Parent and Toddler Groups 
Updated Children's Centres Timetables 
Groups for Parents to Be

Have you heard of Le-Vel? Why not try the Thrive 8 Week Experience? Want to:
  • Lose Weight and Tone up?
  • Improve your Mental Clarity & Lose that Brain Fog?
  • Look Better and Feel Better?
  • Take Work Outs to a New Level?
  • Have Great Energy Levels with No Slump? 
There are also opportunities to promote these products yourself and earn an income with an amazing range of bonuses. Please take a look at my link: or contact me on 07879881263 or email:
Click on the link, watch the video, check out the Facebook page and sign up through my link for a sample pack! What are you waiting for? This is the start of a New You!!
Ad Rates
If you'd like to consider advertising on the site, take a look at the Ad Rates page. There is a range of ads to suit all budgets, and if you want to hear how advertising on Essex Mums has worked for others, take a look at the Testimonials page. I am always happy to put together packages that suit you and are normally discounted so get in touch if you have a few ideas about where you'd like to be on the site and we can work together to find something that suits you. If you would like help putting an ad together, we can provide this service free of charge.

If you are interested in being informed of special ad offers, let me know. Offers this month: MSUMMER HOLIDAYS PACKAGES!
Everything else
As always, please send any events, feedback, ideas etc. to me at I love hearing how people use the site and ways I can improve it. The normal newsletter will be back next month - I hope you've enjoyed this overview of the website!

I hope you have a lovely month and that I'll get to see you at a meet-up soon.

Kind regards
Fantastic things to win! Enter one of our great competitions or get in touch if you would like to run something yourself. New competitions are always being added so make sure you check the competitions page for new giveaways, and get in touch if you'd like to run a giveaway yourself. 
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