You stay dry and baby is comfy and dry too
Gaby Logan, TV sports presenter

Most toddlers absolutely love the bath. They can’t get enough of the fun splashing games and special toys reserved for bath time. Bath time can be a really important part of the bedtime routine as it acts as a sleep cue and it’s a great bonding experience. However, lots of tots really struggle with hair washing, and some can find it very upsetting. It’s a phase that will pass but it can be really difficult to deal with when you’re in the trenches. We’ve put together this short post with ten quick tips to help your toddler relax and tolerate having their hair washed. Let us know if they help!

Ten Quick Toddler Tips for a Happy Hair Wash_ Cuddledry.com

1 Use a mild shampoo that won’t irritate their eyes.

2 Consider a detangling spray if their hair is long or curly.

3 Role play the hair washing experience and let them join in by washing a favourite bath toy.

4 Experiment with timings – some toddlers may cope better if you get it out of the way first, others may need to relax and play first.

5 Talk them through the process before and during, so they know what to expect.

6 Encourage them to look up whilst rinsing by holding a toy in the air or even putting tome glow in the dark stars on the roof.

7 Experiment with different method for rinsing their hair. Try a cup, small watering can, show attachment or jug.

8 Keep a dry towel or flannel nearby to dry their face, early and eyes after rinsing.

9 Stay calm – if you’re anxious or cross your toddler will pick up on that and the process will be more difficult for you both.

10 Be ready to keep the fun going afterwards with a warm snuggly towel on standby and a few silly games to play whilst you dry their hair and coax your tot into their pyjamas.

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Thanks to Swim and Leisure Supplies for this week’s guest post.

tips to Reduce Fear of Water For Children_Cuddledry.comLearning to swim can be a daunting task for anyone, and especially for young children. The main factor in learning to swim is overcoming the fear of the water- once the confidence has kicked in the swimming skills come naturally. Here at Swim and Leisure Supplies, we have come up with some tips to help children overcome their fear of water.

Baby Steps

Just like when we taught our children to walk, we did it in small stages at a time. The same applies to getting the children confident in the water. Start off by encouraging your child to sit on the edge of the pool or even the bath with their feet in the water. The bath maybe a good place to start with this step if you are really struggling as a big public swimming pool along with the smell of chlorine and the splashing around maybe too much for your child take in. Once they are confident with their feet in the water, encourage them to go in the pool a little further whilst constantly giving positive encouragement.

Fun in the Water

This tip again is one which you can try out at home, use bath toys to help your child take their mind of actually being in the water.tips to Reduce Fear of Water For Children_Cuddledry.com Items such as bubbles and water squirters can take the fear away or even purchase a paddling pool in the warmers months and adding their toys there all help to assuring your child that there is nothing to be scared of. If you then decide to make the jump to a public swimming pool, it is best to check the timetable of the leisure centre and participate with your child in a general swim as normally this will include floatees and a range of swimming training aids such as kickboards and inner tubes which can be used.

Top tip – Purchase a unique swim poncho for your toddler or if you are on a family holiday and would like to protect your child from the sun once they get out of the water you can also purchase a UV towel which are both available on this website.

Taking Swimming Lessons

Enquire with your local swimming centre about potentially enrolling your child into swimming lessons. These are led by professionals who are trained in helping young swimmers reduce their fear of the water and increasing their confidence with a range of activities to enhance their swimming skills. The key is the encouragement and not giving up as swimming lessons are there to help. It may take some time but along with the support from yourself and the instructors, your child will never want to get out of the water.

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Baby’s first Christmas is always hotly anticipated. It’s such an exciting time of year anyway, so its little wonder that people get in to a frenzy when you add a shiny new person to the mix!
If you’re a new parent it can be easy to get overwhelmed by all the gifts, well-wishers and expectations of the season, so here are our top ten tips for having a wonderful Christmas with your new bundle. Plus, we have a copy of Holly Willoughby’s Truly Happy Baby book and a gorgeous Cuddledry hands free towel to giveaway… read on to find out how you can enter!
A truly happy baby's first christmas_Cuddledry.com
Relax
Make sure to chill and take it easy! ‘Tis the season for running around like a headless chicken, but you’ve got enough on your plate. Don’t agree to attend every possible event- enjoy some quality time on the sofa with your little family.
Chill
Don’t worry if no-one manages to get out of their pyjamas on Christmas Day! Surely this is the one day of the year where its perfectly acceptable to do just that! Trust us, now is the time to just enjoy the little things.
Focus on your family unit
It’s totally okay to want some peace and time away from the extended family. If this is something you’d like, then chat to them about it in advance so it’s not a shock. Maybe you can come to an agreement about Boxing Day instead?
Write a gift list
Have a think about what gifts would be practical from family and friends. You know they’ll ask, so come up with a few ideas. The cuddleduck is a great option because it’s a bath toy and a safe teether in all in one- and let’s face it, it’s super cute too!
The thought counts
Why not make some keepsake gifts for family and friends? We’re thinking salt dough ornaments of little foot prints, photo collages and more. The kind of gifts that truly last a lifetime.
Start a new tradition
Christmas is a wonderful time to form your own special family traditions. Maybe you’d like to pick out a special tree ornament for baby, or go to the local carol service. Just because they’ll sleep through most things doesn’t mean you can’t start forming the traditions that will shape your family for years to come.A Truly Happy Baby's First Christmas_Cuddledry.Com
Don’t go overboard
Try to resist buying absolutely everything that catches your eye. Baby is easily pleased, you’re all she really wants. There really is no need to go mad and over spend.
Be realistic
Don’t set your expectations too high, just because it’s Christmas. Be realistic. Your baby might not really be very interested in some of their gifts and she might find to many visitors overwhelming. Take your cues from her, and go with the flow as much as you can.
Get snap happy
Take all the photos you can, and don’t forget to make sure you’re in some of them too! This is a precious occasion and you don’t want to spend it all behind the camera. And don’t forget to snap a shot of little one in their cuddledeer towel!
Enjoy
Above all, enjoy every minute with your sweet baby and don’t put too much pressure on yourself.
Bonus tip…
One last piece of seasonal advice we’d like to give you: don’t forget about yourself. Sure, your little one is the focus but it’s important to take time for YOU too. Why not see if someone can take baby for a walk while you relax with a cuppa and write some Christmas cards, or have a bath? Pass baby over to Dad in the evening, paint your nails or have a little pamper. You deserve the break too!
 WIN-2
At Cuddledry we know that happy mums and happy babies go hand in hand, and that’s why we’ve got an extra special giveaway for you this Christmas. We’re huge fans of Holly Willoughby’s Truly Happy Baby book, and we’d like to offer you the chance to win a copy! And seeing as we know how happy the Cuddledry hands free towel makes you guys at bath time, we’re going to pop one in to the prize bundle too. It couldn’t be easier to win. Simply enter your details into the form below and we’ll cross our fingers for you!
Terms and Conditions are on the Rafflecopter form. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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This week we have another guest post for you, this time from The Baby Swimming Shop. As you know, here at Cuddledry HQ we are huge advocates for getting little ones into the water as early as possible, and helping them to learn the joys of swimming. But with that comes the responsibility of ensuring they are safe at all times in the water. So here are some essential guidelines on water safety for families. Please read and share this summer!

Guest post- Water Safety for Families_Cuddledry.comThe summer holidays are in full swing, and with them is the promise of fun in the sun and in the water. As a nation, during summertime we like nothing better than messing about in the sea or splashing about in the pool. In reality, water and children can often be a daunting prospect. Children aged 0-10 (or even older depending on your child’s individual swimming ability) should always be supervised around water- pools, lakes, rivers and ponds can pose threats for all water goers.

According to the National Water Safety Forum around 50 children drown each year in the UK, many of them on holiday and during the summer months. Young children are especially at risk because they can drown in less than 2 inches (6cms) of water. To help you have watery fun this summer, we’ve put together a handy list of the main water dangers to be on the lookout for and steps that you can take to ensure that you enjoy the water safety.

The pool:

The most obvious water danger, from private villa pools to the local recreation centre or hotel pool, swimming pools pose the same dangers.

Shared pools at hotels, apartments and holiday parks:

They might seem safe but hotel and holiday resort swimming pools can often be very deep and some are not lifeguarded so it’s essential you make sure your children are competent swimmers and are closely supervised around the water. These kinds of pools are usually very overcrowded in peak season so park your sunbed near to where your children are playing and take-it-in turns to go into the pool to supervise the kids to ensure that no-one gets into difficulty. Put 0-7 year-olds in a float suit for a little peace of mind.

Private pools at villas or small holiday complexesGuest post Water Safety for Families_Cuddledry.com_

Most private villa pools or pools at small residential complexes are highly unlikely to have a lifeguard present. Check there are water safety rings or other emergency floatation aides available before you use the pool. Also, find out if there is an emergency phone near the pool, check that your mobile phone is working and note the local emergency services numbers. If you are renting from a holiday home owner, check the status of the current pool safety facilities. We learned the hard way when we stayed at a complex that had a description on the website detailing a large lifeguarded pool for residents, but on arrival the complex was rundown and there had not been a lifeguard on duty for more than 5 years, nor any working safety equipment.

Pool safety advice

Beware of slippery surfaces as children can fall over and hurt themselves. Jelly shoes or pool socks can prevent slipping around the pool edge. If they want to jump in, encourage them to jump into the water away from the edge as much as possible, so that they don’t bang their heads. Kids shouldn’t run or push around the pool and told not to dive in areas that aren’t marked for diving. If a storm comes, vacate the pool immediately!

The Beach:

Sea

The sea is great fun to play in however strong currents, cold temperatures and rapidly changing tides can pose a huge threat to even the strongest swimmers. Beware of large waves and don’t stand with your back to the water because a sudden wave can knock you over.

If you have older kids in your party, teach them that if they’re caught in a rip current or undertow, they should swim parallel to the shore or tread water and call for help. Make sure you always have them in view.

Warning flags

Pay attention to any flags and notices along the beach that warn you about tidal activity and other hazards. Watch what the locals do on the beach. If it seems that the locals are getting out of the sea, you do the same.

Rocks

Guest post: Water Safety for Families_Cuddledry.comTry to discourage older children to jump off rocks into the sea as there can often be rocks concealed beneath the surface of the water that can cause serious injury. Toddlers love rock pool and climbing on rocks, but again, stay with them as rocks can be sharp and slippery. Everyone loves a rock pool, right?!

Jelly fish and debris

Portuguese man-of-war stings can be very painful so tell kids to watch out for them in the water and to tell an adult immediately if they’re stung. Its best if kids don’t jump on them either, as stings can still be active. During or after storms, wood, rubbish and sometimes dangerous debris can land on beaches and float in the water. Tell your kids to watch out for rubbish and debris and make sure toddlers don’t stand on the jelly fish or throw rubbish washed up.

Inflatables and lilos

Used in pools and the sea, these toys can overturn without warning, trapping young children beneath the surface. Rip currents and coastal winds can sweep a child on an inflatable out to sea very quickly, and they can also get pushed against rocks.

Waterparks:

Waterparks are a great family day out and are for the most part, safe places to play. They do, however, pose the same risks as swimming pools with some extra ones on top. Waterparks are always lifeguarded and have strict safety regulations. Read all official signs before letting your child on any rides as they have age, height, weight, and health requirements plus different depths of water. Watch your children constantly: don’t trust the staff alone to keep them safe. Water slides and rides can lead to high-speed collisions that can go unnoticed by busy lifeguards. When using waterslides, children can become disorientated when re-entering main pool or emerging from the water, so it is essential your children wear floats and/or float suits whenever possible.

Guest post: Water Safety for Families_Cuddledry.comWatch out for these other holiday watery hazards:

– In the bathroom – the loo, bede, bath, sink

– Out and about – Fountains, inflatable ‘paddling’ pools, large puddles, waterlogged fields, ponds and ditches filled with rainwater

– Leisure – Spas, jaccuzis and hot tubs

We’d always recommend packing an baby inflatable ring too.

What are your top tips for water safety this summer?

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Guest post: Why Every Child Should Learn to Swim_Cuddledry.comHere at Cuddledry HQ we believe that a baby’s love for the water should be nurtured and that’s one of the reasons why we are such huge advocates for splash time! Whether in the tub or in the pool, getting in and having a good old splash is great fun, and we think that swimming is such an important life skill to have too. So why should your child learn to swim? This post explains more….

Lizzy Bullock is an expectant mother and WSI-certified swimming instructor with over a decade of experience working with infants, children, and adults. Lizzy currently works as a swimming instructor and staff writer for AquaGear, a swim school and online swim shop, and today she’s written on why every child should learn to swim. Enjoy, and let us know what you think!

 

With spring break in the rear view mirror, summer is just a hop, skip, and jump away. If you’re scrambling to concoct the perfect recipe of activities to keep your kids active, safe, and engaged, then add swimming lessons to the mix!

Swimming lessons are the perfect recipe for summer fun, but provide your child with a host of other benefits as well.

  • Swimming lessons foster social development

From the minute they’re born until the moment they set foot in daycare, kids spend the majority of their time with parents, brothers, and sisters. Group swimming lessons create a social environment that helps kids succeed. During lessons, children learn to communicate with others their age, share pool equipment, take turns, and make new friends. In addition to the peer benefits, kids learn to vocalize their needs to non-parent adults, which promotes good manners, speech skills, and self-control. The pool becomes a practice arena for honing social competence, which paves the way for kids to dive into the deep end in school.

  • Healthy habits for lifeWith spring break in the rear view mirror, summer is just a hop, skip, and jump away. If you're scrambling to concoct the perfect recipe of activities to keep your kids active, safe, and engaged, then add swimming lessons to the mix. Swimming lessons are the perfect recipe for summer fun, but provide your child with a host of other benefits as well.Swimming Lessons Foster Social DevelopmentFrom the minute they're born until the moment they set foot in daycare, pre-K, or kindergarten, kids spend the majority of their time with parents, brothers, and sisters. If they don't have siblings, they're already at a social disadvantage when the kindergarten doors open. Researchers at Ohio State University found that school-age children who grow up with one or more siblings have an easier time forming friendships, expressing feelings, and resolving conflicts with classmates. In contrast, only children consistently rank lower in these same social skills.Group swimming lessons create a social environment that helps kids succeed. During lessons, children learn to communicate with others their age, share pool equipment, take turns, and make new friends. In addition to the peer benefits, kids learn to vocalize their needs to non-parent adults, which promotes good manners, speech skills, and self-control. The pool becomes a practice arena for honing social competence, which paves the way for kids to dive into the deep end in elementary school.Healthy Habits for LifeFor better or worse, lifelong habits are formed when kids are young. Kids who start swimming at an early age discover the joy that comes from physical activity. By adopting this exercise habit, they'll reap lifelong health benefits.Because water is 800 times denser than air, it provides a fun strength-building medium. Performing any stroke engages muscles throughout the body - particularly the core, legs, and shoulders. Strong core muscles are especially helpful for stability, balance, and spinal health. Plus, the anaerobic exercise boosts lung capacity and cardiovascular efficiency. Strengthening these muscle groups creates conditioning that kids can later draw on in soccer, baseball, and other sports. If your child takes to the water like a fish, all the better. Swimming scholarships are available nationwide and, when the time comes, a great stroke can mean the difference between community college and a private university.Boosting Bodily Awareness & Self-EsteemThink about the awareness you have about how your body takes up space as it moves through the world. It's called "proprioception." Studies find that babies who spend time swimming before the age of two develop this bodily awareness to a greater degree than those who don't. This cognizance allows children to become more creative, capable, and observant adults. Buoyancy provides the ultimate freedom of movement, giving kids the power to bend and flex in ways they never thought possible. Plus, they can try out new moves - like tumbling, handstands, and "flying" - in what feels like zero gravity. Bouts of self-doubt are an inevitable part of childhood. Learning to swim helps to replace doubt with confidence. Simply trying new things is enough to boost a kid's self-esteem, not to mention the thrill of facing new challenges, conquering personal fears, and making friends. In swimmers, that attitude has staying power. Time and again, swimmers score high in body confidence studies.Easing Pain and AnxietyMost children love the water. For kids who have conditions like ADHD, autism, cerebral palsy, rheumatoid arthritis, amputation, or partial paralysis, spending time in the pool can impart spectacular benefits. When hydrostatic pressure envelops children, it promotes blood flow while simultaneously triggering a natural response that slows the heart rate. This soothing effect can alleviate pain and calm hyperactivity. Plus, the body's buoyancy in water makes swimming more accessible for kids with chronic pain, joint problems, low muscle tone, and restricted movement.Most land-based sports were out of reach for a student of mine who has cerebral palsy. She was quickly able to master floating and locomotion in the water, and her newfound proficiency bolstered her morale and brought her out of her shell. Former students with autism have found a sense of serenity in the water, perhaps due to its texture, light reflection, and tranquil sounds.Safety FirstHere in Florida, we're surrounded by water. Backyard pools and ponds are as common as palmetto bugs, and nearly everyone lives within a few miles of a canal, ocean, lake, or river. With water so ubiquitous, the Sunshine State is a great destination for year-round fun. Unfortunately, our proximity to water also translates to the highest rate of accidental drowning in the country. One of the best ways to avoid that unspeakable tragedy is to teach your child to be respectful of and exercise caution around water. The bottom line is that it's not enough to teach kids to swim. They need to know the basics of water safety. Imagine a child who is totally fearless around water. They jump in without protesting and submerge fully. If they haven't been taught how to return to the side, their natural reaction is to wait for mom or dad to scoop them up. There have been countless times when I've seen a child confidently jump into a pool, and then witnessed the dawn of realization that comes when they have no idea what to do next because mom's not there to grab them. It would be like teaching a teen to drive but neglecting to mention the brake pedal.Reputable swimming lessons will always include water safety. Your child should be taught to tread water, return to the side independently, and roll to their back if they become tired. In addition to in-pool skills, the Red Cross method incorporates Whale Tales safety lessons, which range from swimming with a buddy to wearing a life jacket to rescuing others safely without entering the pool.Just as you have an emergency plan for fires or floods, your child should know the plan for water-related incidents. Ensuring that your child is equipped to deal with being pushed into a pool, falling off a boat, or being pulled away from shore by a current is part of the value delivered by swimming lessons.Water safety is a cornerstone of swim lessons, but it is only the tip of the iceberg. With summer just around the corner, swim lessons will provide your kids with a host of other physical and psychological benefits. Once they learn the basics, swimming becomes a means for kids to bond with their parents, siblings, and friends. Unlike many land-based sports, swimming teaches an essential skill. A child who can swim can go to water parks, play in the surf, snorkel, tube, and dive - giving families more opportunities to spend time together under the summer sun.

For better or for worse, lifelong habits are formed when kids are young. Kids who start swimming at an early age discover the joy that comes from physical activity and by adopting this exercise habit, they’ll reap lifelong health benefits. Because water is 800 times denser than air, it provides a fun strength-building medium; performing any stroke engages muscles throughout the body – particularly the core, legs, and shoulders. Strong core muscles are especially helpful for stability, balance, and spinal health. Plus, the anaerobic exercise boosts lung capacity and cardiovascular efficiency. Strengthening these muscle groups creates conditioning that kids can later draw on in sports.

  • Boosting body awareness & self-esteem

Think about the awareness you have about how your body takes up space as it moves through the world. It’s called “proprioception.” Studies find that babies who spend time swimming before the age of two develop this bodily awareness to a greater degree than those who don’t. This allows children to become more creative, capable, and observant adults. Buoyancy provides the ultimate freedom of movement, giving kids the power to bend and flex in ways they never thought possible. Plus, they can try out new moves – like tumbling, handstands, and “flying” – in what feels like zero gravity. Bouts of self-doubt are an inevitable part of childhood; learning to swim helps to replace doubt with confidence. Simply trying new things is enough to boost a kid’s self-esteem, not to mention the thrill of facing new challenges, conquering personal fears, and making friends.

  • Easing pain and anxiety

Most children love the water. For kids who have conditions like ADHD, autism, cerebral palsy, rheumatoid arthritis, amputation, or partial paralysis, spending time in the pool can have spectacular benefits. When hydrostatic pressure envelops children, it promotes blood flow while simultaneously triggering a natural response that slows the heart rate. This soothing effect can alleviate pain and calm hyperactivity. Plus, the body’s buoyancy in water makes swimming more accessible for kids with chronic pain, joint problems, low muscle tone, and restricted movement.

  • Guest post: Why every child should learn to swim_Cuddledry.comSafety first

Reputable swimming lessons will always include water safety. Your child should be taught to tread water, return to the side independently, and roll to their back if they become tired.Water safety is a cornerstone of swim lessons, but it is only the tip of the iceberg.

With summer just around the corner, swim lessons will provide your kids with a host of other physical and psychological benefits. Once they learn the basics, swimming becomes a means for kids to bond with their parents, siblings, and friends. Unlike many land-based sports, swimming teaches an essential skill. A child who can swim can go to water parks, play in the surf, snorkel, tube, and dive – giving families more opportunities to spend time together under the summer sun.

 

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There’s no doubt about it. Parenting is hard work. There are the sleepless nights, the dirty nappies, the tantrums and the messy mealtimes. But if you think that’s all there is to it, you couldn’t be more wrong! We took to Twitter to ask our followers what they loved about being a parent, and the response we got was amazing. So is parenting the hardest job in the world? Maybe. But if anything is worth doing, it’s worth doing well, and it’s likely to be a challenge too.

Parenting: The Hardest Job in the World?_Cuddledry.com

“It makes me proud to see my daughter grow and develop new skills, and seeing how kind she treats other kids.”

As parents, we want our children to be happy and to grow and develop into kind and happy people. @wavetomummy told us that her daughter makes her proud every day and @GreatNorthMum added that “Seeing my biggest boy make his baby brother laugh and show him so much affection”  makes her heart melt. And we’re not surprised! Kindness is important. And knowing that you passed that on is something very special indeed. As our friends at @BabaandBoo say, “when their teachers say that they are a joy to be around and are kind to their classmates. Makes me burst!”

From a tiny baby, to a tiny person, these little people never cease to amaze us! What does your little one do to make you proud?

When someone meets your child with their grandparents (whilst I’m at work) and remarks at how well behaved & polite they are!”

We’re with you @Mrsshilts, it’s always nice to know they can behave well without you too! Because no matter how hard we try, we can’t be with them all the time.Parenting: The Hardest Job in the World?_Cuddledry.com We have to loosen the ties and let them grow, let them explore. Let them be their own person. So it’s always a bonus when you discover that the person you made is actually really nice!

But all of this is not to say that our little angels don’t have their moments too. We all do! Kids are still learning and let’s face it, there are many many rules out there to follow. We all have bad days, and kids are allowed them too. It’s how we react to them that leaves an impression. The lovely Fi at @childcareisfun believes wholeheartedly in celebrating every small achievement:

“Every little success and every precious moment – no matter how small, makes me feel wonderful and incredibly proud to be a parent.

That pride and happiness is bound to rub off on the children too, so keep it up! Lizzie at @firstooth agrees, stating that “their achievements big and small” make her proud every day.

So is it really the hardest job in the world? It’s exhausting. It’s emotional. It’s hard. But the hardest job in the world surely has to be knowing when to let them go. These days, while they’re little, are so intense. But they don’t last long, and before you know it they’re long gone. So cherish every moment. Have an extra cuddle tonight. Read an extra story at bedtime. Spend a little longer listening to your toddler’s tales of the day. It’s all worth it.

Cuddledry has fallen in love with Instagram! We love sharing photos with you, and we love the little community we’ve built up over there too. And what makes our day more than anything is seeing your little ones dressed up in their Cuddledry finest! So we thought we’d send out a plea for you to share more of your precious snaps with us- and celebrate with a little giveaway too!

Win an Accessories Bundle on Instagram_Cuddledry.com

Not on Instagram yet? Here’s three reasons why you need to set up an account today!

It’s a beautiful way to preserve memories

Instagram is micro blogging at its best. Snap a photo on your phone, upload it and remember it forever. The beauty of Instagram is that it allows you to preserve a moment in time forever, with a caption as long or as short as you please. And while life may not be beautiful all the time, your Instagram feed can be! AvidInstagrammers may share only the most polished of snapshots but in our opinion, there’s nothing wrong with that. Life is filled with splendid moments that deserve to be collected and protected for all of eternity.

It’s fun!

Liven up your photos with different filters, use add on apps to create captions and layer text… anything goes! Instagram is a fun way to socialise and a if you get involved in a community the possibilities are endless.

It lets your personality shine

Because its visual, Instagram allows users to be more creative and to share images that represent their interests and hobbies. So your personality shines through and your photos reflect what matters to you. Whether its food, animals, babies… Instagram makes it all look beautiful and stores your favourite photos in one place. We love being able to bring you snaps from the Cuddledry collections and we hope our personality comes across in them too!

Follow us on Instagram!

Want to be in with a chance to win an accessories bundle? Included is one natural sea sponge, one Cuddleduck, one bamboo hand towel and one Cuddletwist hair towel. And to win you just need to follow three simple steps:

Win an Accessories Bundle on Instagram_Cuddledry.com1. Follow @Cuddledry on Instagram

2. Share a photo of your little one with any item from our collections- and don’t forget to tag us!

3. Tag three friends and ask them to do the same

That’s it! The giveaway starts at 1pm today 10th March and ends at 1pm Thursday 24th March. Good luck!

*Terms and Conditions*

Open to UK residents only

Giveaway begins 1 pm Thursday 10th March 2016 and ends 1pm Thursday 24th March 2016

One winner to be drawn at random within 48 hours of giveaway end

Winner to be announced via Instagram

Our decision is final

One winner to win the Cuddledry accessories bundle, prize is non transferrable and no cash alternative offered

Not associated with Instagram

This week we have a lovely guest post from Baba and Boo, creators of beautiful clothing, shoes and accessories for your little ones. A fully fledged baby boutique, Baba and Boo specialise in fashionable reusable nappies, and today they are sharing their five top tips for cloth nappy beginnings.

Thinking of using cloth nappies but not sure where to begin? We all have to start somewhere, so don’t fret! Here are some words of wisdom from Baba and Boo…

Five top tips for cloth nappy beginnings_ cuddle dry.com

Get advice from friends

It really helps when you know someone who already uses cloth nappies so you can lean on them for impartial advice – after all, they’ve already been through it and have most likely tried all the different brands

It doesn’t have to be all or nothing.

Don’t over-face yourself. If you’re feeling a bit overwhelmed, which is particularly the case when you have a small baby on your hands, just introduce one cloth nappy per day and scale it up as and when you feel more comfortable. This will allow you the time to really get to know your cloth nappies and establish a washing routine that works for you without feeling any pressure.

Join a support group.

There are plenty of cloth nappy support groups over on Facebook with cloth nappy users on hand to help answer any questions as and when you need advice and it’s a great place to make new clothy friends too. You’ll soon be comparing prints and be surprised how much you can learn just through reading the threads. Baba+Boo actually have their own Nappy Natter group which we would love you to join – we’re a nice bunch, I promise.

Research which nappies are best for you.

You may feel a bit overwhelmed when doing this as there are so many different fastenings/brands/inserts/prints etc which is why getting some impartial advice from friends/groups is a good idea. In some cases it could be trial and error as some babies are heavier wetters than others but there’s always always a solution. A great place to start your research is on this BabyCentre article which talks you through all the options.

Get yourself all set up.

Make sure you have a little system in place before you start… get yourself a bucket for those dirty nappies, a wet bag for when you’re out and about and it’s always useful to have a little place in your house to store everything so it’s nearby. To save yourself time after washing, stuff the nappies with the inserts so they’re all ready to go.

If you have any questions at all, here at Baba+Boo we have our own personal cloth nappy guru on hand so feel free to drop her an email should you feel in a bit of a spin.

Do you have any other tips for anyone thinking about starting their cloth nappy journey? Leave your tip in the comments below.

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Today we have a guest post on baby massage from GoBabyClub app, the baby development app that helps to “stimulate & develop baby through activities in terms of emotional, cognitive & physical aspects, at their own time and pace, to complete the milestone”. To find out more about the GoBabyClub app and baby massage visit the site here. To download the app search for ‘GoBabyClub’ on your Google Play store or Apple iOS store.

Bonding with your baby is one of the most important aspects of parenthood.  One of the most loving and pleasant ways of bonding is to give your baby a massage as your loving touch has the power to soothe your baby. Caroline Rodenbach, GoBabyClub expert in massage, acupressure and reflexology, says that massages on babies are more caresses than real massage, although babies enjoy a soft yet firm touch.

Guest post: Relaxing Bath Time Baby Massage with Super Soft Cuddledry Towels_Cuddledry.com

Touch is both calming and comforting to small babies and plays a large role in healing. Read the rest of this entry »

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This week we have a guest post written by Tracey Hargraves, who runs baby swimming classes in South Lancashire for Puddleducks, one of the many fantastic swim school options available in the UK. As many of you start to think about swimming lessons, or start to return to lessons in the coming weeks, we thought it would be a great idea to share some tips on keeping your baby warm in the water. Do let us know if you have any questions at all!

Tips for keeping your baby warm whilst swimming_cuddledry.com

Hopefully, many of you will have discovered the joy and benefits of teaching your little one to swim.  With any luck you baby is thoroughly enjoying their time in the water and is smiling and giggling throughout their time in the pool.  However, for a number of you, your baby may not be enjoying the experience and cry and shiver their way through your time at the pool.  Given the importance of teaching your child to swim, it is important that it is as an enjoyable experience as possible and therefore we want to minimise these tears whenever possible.

One of the most common causes of distress in the pool is that your child is not warm enough.  Remember that your baby is unable to regulate their temperature as well as you, which means that they can feel the cold a lot faster than you.  No two children are alike.  My daughter has always been able to go into the chilliest of pools without problem whilst my son will turn blue in the warmest of pools – absolute polar opposites so to speak!

If your little one does get cold in the water then this can really disrupt their enjoyment of swimming and may lead them to start to develop a phobia of the water.  This could impact on their development and is likely to also impact on both their confidence and swimming ability in the water.  It is therefore really important to recognise these signals and take action early to keep them warm so that they continue to enjoy their swimming experience.  With these top tips, we’ll should hopefully avoid any of these issues. Read the rest of this entry »

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