Mind and body

I’ve got some exciting news! Something that I’ve been desperate to share with you all these past weeks. The amazing team at Wilderness are offering a family ticket to their award winning art and outdoors festival to one of my lucky readers (you!).

The Wilderness festival is the quintessential weekend for the free-spirited festival lover and is held at Cornbury Park in Oxfordshire on the 10-12th August 2012 . You’re free? Oh great!

The festival brings together music, food, theatre, talks and debates, cinematic happenings, late night parties, wellbeing and the great outdoors. Have you seen how utterly gorgeous and magical it looks?

I know, I know! It is inspired. Here is the official musical line up:












You can find out everything Wilderness has to offer over at their gorgeous site http://www.wildernessfestival.com (how stunning illustrations are those illustrations btw?)

This competition is to win a family ticket (2 adults, 2 children and camping worth £260!) and they’ve got some absolutely amazing things on for families. In fact it’s been hailed as the ultimate children’s festival experience, so let’s find out what’s happening for the little loves of our lives shall we?

The team at Wilderness explain “We want to ensure that everyone attending Wilderness, no matter what age, can enjoy the unique offerings we have across the weekend. Our curators have raised the bar this year to create the phenomenal ‘Little Wild Ones’ area that will have all kinds of activities for kids. Wilderness will have opportunities for everyone to take part in something that they wouldn’t normally have the chance to experience, and for us that’s key.” Sounds good!











Embracing the Wilderness spirit, the ‘Little Wild Ones’ area will be a hive of inspired children’s activity. The Flying Seagull Project returns with a range of entertainment based in a beautiful gypsy-esque, open-sided pavilion tent, complete with vintage horsebox and Willy Wonka style stage. Kids can also discover the magic of nature with a rainbow trail led by the Fairyland Trust. Families will embark on a fascinating journey as they enter a wonderful land of fairy folklore and natural history.

Let their imaginations run wild with a host of spectacular activities and workshops including jewellery making with Amy Surman, a Socktopus puppet workshop, which promotes creative recycling and will hold a dancing parade on the final day, and Witchwood School of Rock – the biggest little rock school in the world. The ‘Little Wild Ones’ also welcomes Hartbeeps – a unique blend of original music workshops and mini productions in this interactive experience.

The fabulous Bushcraft Company will be delivering their outdoor adventures influenced by nature, where children will be able to learn bushcraft skills from lighting fires to woodland playing games, shelter building and carving techniques. They’ll also be offering a twist on babysitting with an exclusive kids-only overnight camp where parents can drop their children off at 5pm for them to enjoy a night of walks, games, campfires and cooking with experienced Bushcraft staff. They’ll be back to meet their parents by 11am the next morning – a treat for both children and mums and dads.

Are you sitting comfortably? The Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre will take adults and children on a trip to the author’s mythical world with poems from ‘Revolting Rhymes’ and ‘Dirty Beasts’, and continuing with the literary theme, enjoy  live storytelling music, arts and crafts and yoga from Barefoot Books.

The ‘Pop-up Garden’ will ensure all the family get green-fingered with hands-on knowledge of gardening, the Kite Studio will offer creative clay and print making workshops and Meet the Species returns to Wilderness to engage children with the environment around them, as they identify species in and around the site.

Wilderness is also pleased to welcome Tea Potty Shed with the T Potty ladies and their old-fashioned sweet shop. Children can learn how to weigh out sweets and count out pennies in return for some tasty treats. Also across the festival weekend families can spend some time together and take part in drumming, storytelling, face painting, fairy crown making, cinema, pottery and hula-hooping.

As you would expect at a festival, the fun doesn’t stop when the sun goes down! Let the stars guide you on an enchanting woodland fairy trail, filled with beautiful secret fairy houses and the mesmerising Fairy Queen, who will tell old tales of ancient folk law about the nature that surrounds.










And if this isn’t enough for you there will be family friendly entertainment from the Suitcase Cabaret who will host an army of brilliance from comedy to music and activities including, horse riding, fly-fishing, Zumba! classes and Guerilla Geography available across the festival site. Wilderness also welcomes back The Bearded Kittens to host the famous ‘Not Your Average’ cricket match on the lawn, complete with lashings of Pimms and piles of cucumber sandwiches (ooooh Pimms!), and Future Cinema make their Wilderness debut with a Bugsy Malone takeover complete with a massive splurge fight.

Ok so let’s recap, we have fairy queens, splurge fights, horse riding, old fashioned sweets, art activities, bushcraft skills, Roal Dahl stories, rock workshops. I totally agree this does sounds like the Ultimate festival for children and who am I kidding… for me too!

Imaginative,  enchanting, creative, fun and wild. We want to go! What are you waiting for? All you need to do to enter is follow the instructions on the Rafflecopter below! Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

ThePrizeFinder – UK Competitions

As the eternal optimist I am still waiting for summer to come… it is coming, isn’t it? I’m holding out for the fact we’ve still got July and August to get our fill of fun in the sun… bbq’s with friends, strawberry picking and summer festivals!!

This year we are heading off to Shambala festival (23 – 27th August bank holiday) as a family and we cannot wait. We are really keen now that Littlelish is nearly 3 to take her to family friendly festival, to soak up some music, culture and community vibes and after a little research it seems Shambala is the perfect festival for us.

Originally created as “a place to party, free your mind, lose your heart, learn, discuss and be inspired and see what is achievable as a community” it has the hippy in me screaming “Yes!”. Set in a secret rural location in Northamptonshire the festival is independent with a focus on sustainability, community and creativity!

“Pioneering, intimate and truly innovative Shambala Festival has perfectly blended creativity and participation for well over a decade. Shambala is a special place where you play, revitalise, make lots of new friends and return to the world fuelled-up on the beauty of being alive. As well as being known as a “legendary party”, it is also a haven for cutting edge theatrics and performance, a think-tank of ideas, and an award winning green event.”

Well I was sold at that, what about you? No, well there is more, much more…

In fact there is so much going on I can barely contain my excitement. I am going to get my whole years culture fix! With over 200 bands performing (all genres of music from Reggae to Folk), comedy, theatre, circus, film, open air art, dance and craft workshops I don’t think we are going to struggle for something to do! We are going to be well and truly spoiled for choice.

And all of this set in the most beautiful natural surroundings with compost toilets, free showers and a special family friendly campsite!

As this will be our first ever festival with Littlelish we are happy that the people at Shambala really seem to have thought about families. According to their website (which is fantastic and full of information btw) they have there very own kids field full of excitement for  little monkeys. Art activities, action packed fun – circus skills, trampolines etc and entertainment in the form of music, circus shows and comedy for kids.

As well as this they even have an early years workshop tent tailored to the 3-5yr olds, a special kids cafe and sandpits and climbing areas throughout the festival ground. Plus when you’ve had a busy day exhausting every possibility Shambala has to offer you can settle down for a bedtime story in the Family Camping Yurt – I love it! It really sounds like they have thought of everything and we cannot wait to put it to the test.

So if you hadn’t heard of Shambala what are you waiting for? There are still some tickets left and they have extended the deal to pay 50% now and 50% on August the 1st until June 14th (not long now folks!). Tickets cost £119 for adults for the weekend, teens (15,16,17 ) £79, Children (5-14) £29 and children under 4 – FREE!

We cannot wait to report back to you on just how much fun it was but why not come and see for yourselves? Let us know if you are planning on visiting Shambala :)

I’ve been much more conscious about the food that I choose to eat and feed my family since having littlelish. My body is my temple and all :) As well as eating fresh, organic produce, I also have a preference for organic toiletries for her. I’ve often deliberated over the idea of buying organic toothpaste but for some reason I have never really followed through with it. I guess I was a little stuck on the fence as to whether it would clean as well as normal toothpaste does. I’ve also never really seen it for sale in the supermarket to even put it to the test. So when the lovely lady at Green People offered for us to sample their products we jumped at the chance to try their toothpastes!

They sent us 2 certified organic toothpastes (EcoCert) made especially for children. The toothpaste does not include any Sodium Lauryl Sulphate (SLS), Fluoride, Triclosan, Sorbitol, Parabens, Phthalates, artificial sweeteners, petrochemicals or colourants all which are found in normal toothpaste. For those who aren’t in the know, it is very interesting to google the list above for more information. I did and was rather shocked! I’m now rethinking all our toiletries, not just the ones for littlelish! The toothpastes are made from calcium carbonate which gently cleans and removes plaque while using Vitamin C and Myrrh to fight gum disease and Aloe Vera as an antiseptic.

We were kindly sent both the spearmint and the mandarin flavour. We made the mistake of trying the mandarin one first and I’m afraid to say the minty one hasn’t had a look in yet. Well actually I tried it and it was lovely :) The mandarin one is perfect for little ones as it is not too sweet but just sweet enough to have absolutely no complaints about teeth brushing. She loves the fact that she can take the cap off herself and that it isn’t a bright white colour but rather an off white (she has always been obsessed with shades of colours a bit like her mother!)

I like that fact that although there is no foaming agents in the toothpaste it does bubble up quite nicely and is easy to brush with. Her teeth look lovely and white and her mouth is fresh. All the while I can rest assured she is not swallowing yucky chemicals because let’s face it little ones ALWAYS swallow their toothpaste even if you are stood by imploring them to spit, spit, spit!

The toothpastes are priced at £3.50 for a 50ml tube which is more expensive than a regular toothpaste but really worth it. Not only are all products 100% gentle, vegetarian and cruelty free, Green people also donate 10% of all net profit to health and environmental charities.  So you can feel proud you are doing a great thing for your little one as well as a little extra for the planet.

We are excited to see what else they stock. I think we are going to be total Green People converts – keep you posted! You can find more about Green People and their products at http://www.greenpeople.co.uk or on facebook.

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