Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Annie Get Your Gun

Annie Get Your Gun brings the heart of Broadway to the Bournemouth Pavilion for one week only in this major new production.
From the producers of West Side Story and South Pacific this TONY award-winning version of Irving Berlin’s classic musical comedy stars Emma Williams (Chitty Chitty Bang Bang), Norman Pace(Chicago), and most recently-announced Jonathan Wilkes (Godspell, The Rocky Horror Show UK Tour, Grease, Guys and Dolls, The Wedding Singer, We Will Rock You UK Tour, Chicago) this summer prior to the West End.
When Buffalo Bill’s Wild West show comes to town, it only takes one glance for sharp-shooting country girl Annie Oakley to fall head over heels for its star marksman, Frank Butler. Both have truly met their match, revealing their competitive natures as they vie for best shot - and each other’s hearts.
Featuring the all-time classic hits There’s No Business Like Show Business, Doin’ What Comes Natur’lly andAnything You Can Do I Can Do Better, lead by a live grand orchestra.

A live orchestra and big numbers make this a must see musical. Emma Williams brings an outstanding voice to the part of Annie Oakley and Jonathon Wilkes is charming as Frank Butler.

Great to see Norman Pace too as he is remembered for the double act Hale and Pace. Just a lovely enjoyable show.

Bournemouth Pavilion  19 – 23 August 2014

Ticket Prices

£25.80 – £37.63

Sunday, 17 August 2014

The Clay Studio

Last week we were invited to visit The Clay Studio and ceramic café in Christchurch.  The Clay Studio is situated on the corner of the Fountain roundabout and has it's own dedicated parking bays.

We were surprised by how much space they have, downstairs is a dedicated room used for children's parties where they are able to supply their own food. They also hold  mother and baby days and are very accommodating of parents with pushchairs. There is a baby change area and they are happy for mums to breastfeed their baby.

The girls painted a mug each and were able to choose their own colours and make a design of their choice and it was a welcome change in pace from the busy theme parks and endless car journeys. There are lots of items to choose from and we were impressed to watch a family paint in silence, mum dad and little girl were all quietly painting their own pieces and engrossed in their own work.

The Clay Studio offers much more then you realise, popular as a venue for a hen party yet somewhere relaxing to sit with a coffee and watch the world go by. You don't have to paint, it's a café in it's own right offering a range of food and drinks and seating both inside and out.

Something I wish I had done with my own babies is the first impressions clay imprints, the child's hand and footprints placed onto clay for a keepsake. This is a also a great place to make your own unique gift or holiday souvenir. Take a look at the website to see what else they do.
Here are the finished mugs after being glazed.
See what else you can paint at The Clay Studio
The Clay Studio
The Fountain
1 High Street
Dorset BH23 1AE
Tel: 01202 475000


Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Review - Cats the musical

 Cats at the Bournemouth Pavilion

So, as a cat lover myself and also a fan of Andrew Lloyd Webber's other musicals, this show was much anticipated. 

The story tells of one special night when the Jellicle cats meet at the Jellicle Ball, where their leader Old Deuteronomy decides which of the cats will be reborn into a new Jellicle life.

Brilliant staging and highly impressive performances from the cast are what this show is all about, the musical numbers - with Memory getting a special mention - really showcase Andrew Lloyd Webber and the talent of the performers.

The cats danced in the aisles involving the audience and Old Deuteronomy stayed on stage in the interval to sign autographs.

A great high energy show with spectacular set designs, stunning costumes and breathtaking choreography, CATS is a magical musical like no other.

Cats is at Bournemouth Pavilion Theatre from Monday 11 – Saturday 16 August 2014.

Friday, 1 August 2014

Book Review: 101 things for kids to do outside

It's the summer holidays and like many other parents we are trying to come up with interesting activities to keep the children entertained. My children would spend all day staring at a computer screen if i didn't come up with other ideas, so this book couldn't have come through the post at a better time.

The five year old got her hands on the book first and was instantly excited by the ideas in the large photos and pointed out a few straight away that she would like to try. There are activities in the book to suit any time of the year or weather, so once i had convinced her that that a Halloween feast could wait a few months, she chose to make flower fairies.

We decided to make the fairies in our garden, meanwhile my other daughter who was engrossed in Club Penguin at the time, got off the computer to investigate what was going on. Result! She is almost eight and when i told her what we had planned she looked a bit bemused but soon got stuck in.

The girls spent ages gathering bits and pieces they could use and kept going back and looking at the ideas in the photos. We did have strawberries growing a few weeks ago but sadly they have all been used up so we picked a small apple from the tree and used a fir cone that one of the girls had found previously. Once we had the main body it was easy to find the other little bits to add on. They kept it simple and were very pleased with the results.

What really surprised me, was how this activity led to another and the girls wanted to continue the game and make a house and garden for the fairies. We ended up in the garden for almost two hours and i am not sure which one of us had the most fun!

Here are the results from the 'Make flower fairies activity'

Dawn Isaac, award-winning garden designer, blogger and mum to three young children, comes 101 Things for Kids To Do Outside, packed with games, projects, crafts, experiments and gardening inspiration to get your children to put down their game console controllers and race outside to try something new.

As a grown up looking back, it’s the long school summer holidays spent outside all day playing games, running through the crunchy - cold woods looking for conkers in autumn, picking the first buttercups of spring and building snowmen in icy winter that we remember much more fondly than the time spent in front of the TV or PC. With children aged 8 – 18 spending on average 7.5 hours in front of a screen each day (Kaiser Family Foundation), and childhood obesity on the rise, it is more important than ever to get children outside to explore, climb, run and laugh, whilst they are still children.

Dawn has put together a brilliant compendium of ideas for kids (and adults!), covering all four seasons and ranging from quick 10-minute activities to a full day of fun. From party games and treasure hunts to simple gardening projects, each project is simple to follow and illustrated with colour photography. Encourage your kids to sweep for bugs, plant an alpine colander, fly a home-made kite, make a mud pie kitchen, build a snow lantern, hold a mini Olympics or take the matchbox challenge alongside loads of other great ideas.

The best thing is, you don’t even have to have a garden to use this book to its full potential - a local park or small grassy area will work just as well. This hands-on guide will help children make the most of being outdoors, stimulate their imaginations and provide hours of entertainment for the entire family.

Dawn Isaac spends much of her time coming up with new ways to persuade her kids to go outside, a mission which is chronicled in her popular blog It is also the featured blog on the RHS family website. Dawn writes on garden design for the Guardian, The Telegraph and The Garden, and is currently running Family Garden Design courses in association with Mumsnet Academy. She is also the horticultural advisor for the award-winning CBeebies show Mr Bloom’s Nursery.

101 things for kids to do outside

Dawn Isaac

Published by Kyle Books on 27th March 2014, priced £14.99

Friday, 25 July 2014

AFC Bournemouth help Julia’s House reach its lottery goal

AFC Bournemouth players took time out from training to show their support for Julia’s House by helping to promote its newly-relaunched lottery.
Captain Tommy Elphick and two new sign-ups, Callum Wilson and Junior Stanislas, were among those who entered into the spirit of the occasion at a photo shoot at Dean Court.
The squad are helping to highlight the importance of the lottery as a regular source of income for the charity. The lottery membership currently stands at 6,000, with the hope of reaching 8,000 by Christmas.
“Hitting this target will mean we can reach even more families struggling to cope with a life-limited child,” explained Lottery Co-ordinator Lyndsay Smith. “It costs just £1 a week to sign up making it a very affordable and easy way to support your local children’s hospice,”
“Because we rely on donations for 92 per cent of our fundraising, having a regular income is hugely important as it enables us to plan for the future. We are thrilled that AFC Bournemouth have agreed to support us in this way.”
Players posed with giant lottery balls and took away lottery sign-up leaflets.
Captain Tommy said: “We are proud to be able to support Julia’s House. We think it’s a great charity and it’s a privilege to be able to do our bit. Our goal is to help Julia’s House reach its goal – and get lots of people signing up for the lottery.”
AFC Bournemouth are regular supporters of Julia’s House. Most recently a couple of the players visited the hospice in Corfe Mullen for an impromptu kick around, much to the delight of children and carers.
The Julia’s House lottery has a weekly top prize of £1,000. To join visit

Monday, 16 June 2014

Support the Mumsnet campaign for better miscarriage care

Half of women who miscarry wait 24 hours or more for a scan,
and are treated alongside women with healthy pregnancies
Mumsnet calls for manifesto commitment on better miscarriage care

Mumsnet, the UK’s biggest website for parents, is today publishing the results of a survey into patients’ care and experiences following miscarriage. Around a quarter of a million women miscarry in the UK each year1 – about one in five pregnancies ends in miscarriage – but the statistics published today show that the treatment and support women receive fails to meet their needs or measure up to official national guidelines.

A survey of over one thousand women2 shows:

  • Half (46%) had to wait over 24 hours for a scan to determine if their baby was still alive, with one in five (18%) waiting longer than three days
“When I asked how much longer it would be, I was told I was taking up their time.” A Mumsnet user

  • Half (47%) were treated alongside women with ongoing pregnancies
“I sat with other ladies who were still pregnant and waiting for scans… seeing their happy faces tore me apart.” A Mumsnet user

  • A third (31%) of those who miscarried at home following a scan were not offered any pain relief, or adequate pain relief
“I was under the impression that miscarrying at home was the easy option. It certainly is not easy. I have been in agony.” A Mumsnet user

  • 58% of respondents wanted counselling, but only 12% were offered it
“I had to wait six months to get counselling and lost six months of my life as I was not   coping with the loss.” A Mumsnet user

  • 56% of respondents wanted further medical care but only 26% were offered it
“The hospital said they’d ask a health visitor to contact me. That was two months ago;    nobody has been in touch.” A Mumsnet user

  • Only a quarter (23%) spoke of their experience to friends, and only 13% told wider family
When I felt ready to talk, I didn’t have anyone ready to listen.”  A Mumsnet user

In 2012, NICE guidance on the management of miscarriage stated that miscarrying at home (known as ‘expectant management’) would be the default clinical response for women undergoing miscarriage before the 13th week of pregnancy, but today’s results show this policy is leaving women without the support they need.

  • Only 15% of women who miscarried at home following a scan felt they had the right support, information and pain relief to manage
“I was told, over the phone, to ‘just sit on the toilet and hopefully it will all come out’.”

  • 11 people were asked to store their foetus at home prior to further tests on the embryo
“[I don’t want to] catch my miscarried embryo in a urine sample pot at home, keep it in the fridge overnight if necessary, then take it on the train (two hours) for genetic testing.”

Mumsnet users have developed a five-point Miscarriage Code of Care, which calls for straightforward improvements in the treatment parents receive:
1. Supportive staff
2. Access to scanning
3. Safe and appropriate places for treatment
4. Good information and effective treatment
5.   Joined-up care
Many of the Code’s points are included in best-practice guidance from the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and the Department of Health, but the research shows that, too often, this guidance is not being implemented.

Mumsnet is now asking the Secretary of State for Health, the shadow Health Minister and the junior Health Minister to commit to improving miscarriage care during the lifetime of the next parliament.

Justine Roberts, Mumsnet Founder, said:

“There’s no escaping the pain of a miscarriage, but for this to be compounded by lack of treatment, pain relief, good care or just plain human kindness is completely unacceptable. We are calling on the three main parties to include a pledge in their manifestos to improve miscarriage care, based on the principles in our code.”

Cathy Warwick, Chief Executive of the Royal College of Midwives, said:

“The Royal College of Midwives welcomes and supports the Mumsnet code of care which aims to improve care for women at a very difficult time. Midwives and other health professionals have an important role to play in supporting women and families through the physical and psychological impact of miscarriage. Kind, compassionate and empathetic communication around care and treatment is an essential step to support families. It is particularly important that there is effective communication between the hospital, GP and midwife to provide ongoing support or advice, as needed.”

Jane Brewin, Chief Executive of Tommy’s, said:

“Losing a baby is a devastating experience and our helpline hears from people every day who are struggling to make sense of what has happened to them and why. More research is needed to help us understand the causes of miscarriage so we can develop treatments that help save babies’ lives. We want families to know that they are not alone and that Tommy’s helpline is here to support anyone who has been through this heartbreak.”

Susan Seenan, Chief Executive of the national charity Infertility Network UK, said:

"Miscarriage is an extremely distressing, and often frightening experience and sadly even health professionals can underestimate the impact which a miscarriage can have.  Good support and access to counselling from sensitive trained staff who understand the emotional as well as the physical effect of miscarriage on both women and their partners can make an enormous difference to those dealing with the grief of losing a baby.  We hope that this campaign will lead to better care and support for everyone affected by what can be a hugely traumatic experience.”

More information on the Campaign
You can find more information on the Mumsnet Site

How to get involved
Please ask the three politicians who can make this happen – Jeremy Hunt (@Jeremy_Hunt, Andy Burnham (@andyburnhammp) and Norman Lamb (@normanlamb) – for their support.
If you don’t use twitter, please send an email to the politicians who can make this happen:
  • Secretary of State for Health Jeremy Hunt –
  • Labour Shadow Health Spokesman Andy Burnham  –
  • LibDem Health Minister Norman Lamb –
We need to ask them to include a promise in their next manifesto to make miscarriage care better. Accounts of personal experiences are particularly effective for explaining why we need their support.
Share this on your Facebook page, and tweet about the campaign with hashtag #miscarriagecare
†Source, Miscarriage Association
‡ 1065 women who had miscarried since September 2011 completed the survey between 24 April – 15 May 2014

Friday, 13 June 2014

What's on this weekend in Dorset ~ 14th/15th June

Teddy Bears Picnic - Bridport

Bring your teddies along to our special storytime session where we'll be reading stories and singing songs to celebrate the Bridport Food Festival. We'll only be offering pretend food for our Teddy Bears' picnic but 

all teddies and children under 5 welcome.

More details here

Silver Jubilee Fun Day

A barbecue and bar will be providing refreshments throughout the day, along with cake and ice cream stalls, fayre stalls and games, as well as lots of children's entertainment, including the ever-popular bouncy castle. Fundraising is key to the long-term success of Mudeford Wood Community Centre, so all funds raised will go towards the continued improvement and refurbishment of the Centre.

Wimborne Folk Festival

We're are hosting the Appalachian marquee and there will be other performers around the grounds, and ...... NO ADMISSION CHARGE!
The tea room will be open all day and there are plenty of benches to chill out in the gardens. We are just across from the Minster; our entrance is opposite King Street car park

More details here

Open Day & Country Fair 14

This year's Open Day and Country Fair is set to be the biggest and best yet with a brand new layout.
It's the perfect opportunity to find out all about how we can help you get the skills you need for a career you'll love, or get additional skills for your CV. Come and take a taste of agriculture, countryside, equine, horticulture, business and much more.
Circus workshops, bouncy castle and soft play areas will be open in the Animal Park or enjoy a stroll through the beautiful gardens.