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Past Events in 2019

Forest School with Grass Roots Muddy Boots
5th June 2019

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/grassrootsmuddyboots/
Website: https://grassrootsmuddyboots.com/

When it comes to Little Hiccups Family Fun Day we do strive to stretch the boundaries and explore new activities and events. Things that you would maybe not think about normally doing with your child. We want parents to experience new activities in a safe environment. And despite the uneven ground and the campfire, this one was a major success. It obviously wasn't suitable for our children that used mobility aids due to the uneven ground but despite this we were fully booked. So much in so that when a second slot opened up that one booked up quickly too.

So what was Forest School? When I arrived the woods were set up into different areas. There was a sign welcoming up and inviting us to go on a Gruffalo Hunt. Cuddly toys of the animals found throughout the book were scattered around for the children to find. There was a fairy dell hidden away in the corner and in another corner there was an owl book to enjoy with some cuddly baby owls. There was a swing over a small ditch which my son spent an age on. There was a Potion Corner with pots and pans and bottles full of magic which the toddler disappeared straight to and conjured up spells. There were dinosaurs and digging, bug books and bug toys and supervised craft making. All the children came home with a necklace made out of wood and string that they drew a design on. They then had to use a manual hand drill that they wound themselves to drill a hole for the string to go through. As well as all this we had hammocks scattered around which we lost various children and adults into. They had the capability of enveloping the person completely and could leave the user cosy and isolated while surrounded by people.

And of course there was the campfire. And the food. We had tortilla pizzas roasted over the fire followed by Digestive S'mores. There was many a sticky and happy face after that treat! All guided and supervised by the Grassroots Muddy Boots team. The children and adults alike loved this event. I think we'd like to do this event again but in the meantime the Grassroots team are now hosting special sessions for children with additional needs so make sure you give their Facebook page a follow and give their website a glance.

"Had such a great time this afternoon thankyou very much!!! Kids loved it..!"

"What a fab day!"

"He did lots of activities like make a necklace and bracelet, mud kitchen, hammocks, leaf printing amd frames, pizza making and marshmellow toasting on a fire, potion making, den building and much more.. Would definitely recommend grassroots muddy boots forest school for the little ones."

"Absolutely brilliant time at forest school today, thank you Little Hiccups. Sooooo much to do, kids loved all the activities! Thank you x"

"We've had a fantastic day with our Little Hiccups family in the forest. Owen was so happy! Just the kind of day we needed to bring an end to the school holidays. Thank you guys!"

"Thank you Little Hiccups. A fantastic morning. "Kody with a K" as he's apparently now known �� would like to say a big thank you to Simon and Nick who were 'awesome' at cooking outdoor pizzas. And of course Sally for making s'mores... that just made his week! One of Kody's favourite little hiccup events."

 

Cannon Hall Farm
19th May 2019

Website: http://cannonhallfarm.co.uk/

Well it is a farm after all and farms smell of well...farms!

As it turns out you cannot beat some good old fashioned farm fun. Cannon Hall is a regular with my family simply because it has it all. You know that it will be a good day out when you come here and it was again this weekend.

Little Hiccups has been to Cannon Hall a couple of times before but we'd had a couple of families ask if we could go again so it was duly booked and organised. The staff as always were helpful and friendly on arrival and were more than willing to put aside a picnic room for the families to eat their lunches in. Its a small thing but it means that a family has a quieter and more relaxing place to have their lunch in if needed. And sometimes that is the make or break of a good day out! If you haven't been to Cannon Hall before it was lots of animals including your usual farm animals, the fluffier type (bunnies!) and the scalier type with the newish addition of a Reptile House. Its fascinating in here as above your heads is a trail of Leaf Cutter Ants on their journey from the leaves back to their house. There are also plenty of Meet and Greeting of reptiles and we have images of people stroking Iguana's and Cockroaches among others.

And if the animals are not enough there are several play areas for all ages and abilities. I bumped into several families in this vicinity which was pleasant as some events you seem to miss everyone! This time I actually got a chance to chat to some (plus a sneaky cuddle with newborn Alex).

There is also of course the Tractor ride and the soft play area - The Hungry Llama - which entertained my family for some time while we had a much needed 10 minute rest and an ice-cream. And who can forget the Sheep and Ferret Racing. Always a highlight to any day to see sheep chasing the food and the ferrets...not...:-)

All in all - it felt like a very easy and full day out. And a massive thank you to Cannon Hall who on leaving shared some Discount Vouchers for all the families that attended. I've posted these out to you all.

"We had a great day today. A few moments where my little madam wasn't happy. Once because the birds were singing and she wanted me to turn them off but other than that we loved it. Thank you xx"

"We all had a great time at Cannon Farm Hall. Many thanks to Little Hiccups for organising"

"Thank you so much little hiccups, we had a great time at cannon hall farm xx"

"Amazing day once again. Thank you Little Hiccups we would be lost without you!!"

"Thanks for a great day Little Hiccups!"

"Thank you for a lovely day out!"

 

Relaxed Private Party at Lush
April 2019

Date: Sunday 28th April 2019
Time: 9.00am - 10.30am
Address: Lush, White Rose Centre, Unit 62 Dewsbury Rd, Leeds LS11 8LU
Price: £5 per child. Carers free.
Websitehttps://uk.lush.com/shop/leeds-white-rose

This month we visited Lush for a smelly, sensory and bubbly party! I have to say that it would be hard to find a more enthusiastic bunch of people to run a party. The staff were just wonderful every time I popped in and were so welcoming before, during and after the party. For an example, I popped in with my 2 year old before the party to assess the shop for the Risk Assessment (its terribly exciting my job!) and to scope out toilets, access, etc and ending up staying a good 30 minutes while the staff entertained the 2 year old with bubbles, colours and play-doh soap (which we ended up buying - its fab!) I think that this in itself was a perfect example of just how welcoming they are in this store.

The team opened up before the official shop opening hours to enable us to have a private party and arranged access with the White Rose store to ensure that the environment was friendly and quiet. The Lush party itself was free-flowing. Children were allowed to do what they wanted and move between activities to suit them which included bath art, Bubble Bar Making, Jelly Games, Knot Wrap Fashion and lots of different scents, textures, colours and things that make noise.  The team were on hand and flexible to suit the children's needs and I hear that Jack had a lovely hand massage! 

It was a wonderful and welcoming event and I feel that this is going to become a regular activity in our diary! Thank you Lush :-)

"Thank you little hiccups kids had a fab time this morning. Loving the concentration for the bath jelly spoon race"

"Connie is now in the bath. Thank you for this morning. Lush staff were absolutely fabulous xx"

"We had a fantastic time at the lush party. Many thanks. Willow loved it."

"Hi. I thought the lush event was great, lots of fun sensory activities on offer,  brilliant staff . A lovely experience"

"The kids loved it. It was simply amazing. So relaxed. The children could use as many bombs, jelly, foam and anything else as they liked. No judgement, no pressure. Nothing was too much trouble. The staff were welcoming and engaging. We didn’t want to go home "

"The staff were so so lovely , they let the kids explore at their own pace , no pressure to join in but if u did join in they were fantastic with the kids, I was so impressed with them."

"It was really relaxed and all the staff were great with the kids. Seeing Jack enjoy his hand massage was a definite highlight for me."

 

Relaxed Private Family Photoshoot
March 2019

Image of a Little Hiccups familyYou all know the routine - you have a child that won't sit still, that struggles with a new environment, that cannot or will not pose for photos. There are many frustrations from families that just want a decent family photo and are unable to get one. One of the main concerns is that the photographer will not understand or be patient enough with the child. That the child will end up frustrated at being forced to pose in a way they do not want and the session ends in a melt down. 

I have so many families contacting me before these sessions worried about how it will go - and I always tell them the same thing.  You don't need to worry - not with Dean. 

Dean has many years experience working with families who have children with additional needs. His experience stems from his personal life and his work life and shows itself beautifully in his photos. We've never had a family come away unhappy and in fact many declare that this is the fist time a photoshoot has been successful. You can't really ask more than that! 

Although I didn't go along to this photoshoot (we just leave him to it now!) I've been myself with my children and I can speak from first hand knowledge at how good Dean is at capturing every person's personality. My two eldest children are polar opposites. I have one that won't say a word when she's out and just stares at people and I have another who is impossible to pin down and speaks at around a million words a minute and yet its not a problem. Trust is earned within minutes and the children are giggling away at Dean's entertainment. They love him to bits now. We generally start with the loud one! He's up for all kinds of poses and shows off while Dean snaps away (they'll always be one that isn't a blur!) The quiet one stands and watches and slowly prepares for her turn then when its is I even glimpse a rare smile. We can then persuade them to have photos together and, dare I say it, even hug...(they've hit that age after all!) We're never disappointed and the results always end up on the wall!

But don't just take my word for it. Here's some feedback from Little Hiccups parents:

Checking out his photos on the laptop"Fantastic experience. Dean greeted the boys, made them feel at ease in a judgement free zone! We’ve done a few photo shoots before but never been able to get good pictures or had the boys enjoy the experience before. Fantastic photos, great stress-free experience. Would highly recommend to anyone who dreads the ‘mission impossible’ of family photos."

"We went to deans and from the minute we walked through the door he was so pleasant and welcoming and made Ella feel so at home by letting her be herself. She loved every minute of it and he managed to get her to sit in the box for the photos to be taken and even got some amazing smiles from her. (No idea how as when I ask her to smile for pictures she acts the clown and pulls funny faces) she loved looking at the photos he had taken on his laptop before taking some more. The finished in the box picture is amazing. We will be booking with him again at some point through the year because we loved it so much"

"Dean was brilliant with us and great with Jack. He really put us all at ease."

"I cant believe this little beauty came from me.. i know im biased but hes sooo beautiful. He absolutely loved his photoshoot the little poser. Thankyou little hiccups xx"

 

Soft Play at KidZone, Garforth
Sunday 10th February 2019

Little Hiccups ethos is #NoLimits (you've probably heard us mention that once or twice) but it is important to remember that everyone's limit is different. And this is something that we try to express through our events. So you do have the high flying events and the fast paced events that leave you buzzing and exhilarated after the event. But that is not the whole story. Pushing the boundaries of #NoLimits is a scale and what one child is happy doing might not even enter the consideration of another child.

The thing about Little Hiccups however, is that we keep trying. We keep reaching and striving that little bit further and the children keep experiencing new events. It may not work the first or second time, but it may the third.

I'm thinking of one family in particular where this was was especially prominent (and if the mum is reading this she'll know its her as I've mentioned it to her before). When they first joined us at Stay n Play along with their young child with autism they used to manage 10 minutes maximum before it became too much and they had to leave. But they kept coming and they kept trying. And that 10 minutes increased slowly as he came to know the environment. The same happened at the Family Fun Days. They used to come and only stay briefly before having to go home. But they kept coming and he learnt that these events and others were safe and he started exploring and expanding his limits. I have a very fond memory of this child dancing at one of our parties. He truly does portray everything we try to achieve and we're looking forward to seeing him strive even further forward.

And this is what our February event is about. We visited the soft play center, Kid Zone in Garforth and it was just fun. There was no stress and no anxiety. It was only Little Hiccups families in there and it was easy. To the extent I even managed to sit down during this event! The children went and played and the adults relaxed with a hot drink courtesy of Little Hiccups. The families were all fed so people didn't need to worry about dinner when they got out and hopefully a lot slept well that night from all the exercise.

A massive thank you to Kid Zone for making it so stress free for us. I really do recommend this place as they are so keen to make everyone feel welcome. They also have a Sensory Room for those that just want to relax a little rather than run around like crazy! Follow them on Facebook to find out about their Relaxed Sessions.

Kidzone website

https://www.facebook.com/kidzoneplaycentre/

 

Adventure At Clip n' Climb
Sunday 20th January 2019

Websiteshttps://leeds.clipnclimb.co.uk/

Well - if you wanted to kick off the year in style, visiting Clip n Climb in the miserable month of January is certainly the way to do it! I think a few bucket lists and conquering fears were achieved this day. We certainly had a few nervous looking families on arrival who went away beaming by the end of the day.

We had approached Clip n Climb last September to organise a SEND session for Little Hiccups and right from the get go we knew this would be a fantastic event. The owners were keen to have us and were honestly one of the most approachable and helpful companies I've ever planned with. We explained we have a range of abilities and ages and include siblings in the events and on the day we had around 150 people attending the to Clip n Climb event.

It was slightly crazy as most of our big events are but I can honestly say this has been one of our best ones. The owners pulled out all the stops and nothing was too much for them. They bought a hoist and new harnesses to enable more children to experience the walls and experience it they did. We had the full range of climbers from the ones with low muscle tone in the SEND harness. This completely enclosed the child so that they could experience the sensation of 'climbing' high the see the sensory colours of the bright walls. Then there were the harnesses that the toddlers and the ones that needed a little bit more additional support. These harnesses went over the shoulders and meant that the line was clipped on higher up to give a more secure centre of balance. It meant that parents could support their child to climb but if they chose they were still able to climb themselves. The final group had the harness around the legs and waist. These were the most flexible climbers and the ones that needed the least assistance. The majority of these were climbing by themselves by the end of their session and even the most nervous beat their initial climbing heights from the start to the end of their climb.

Clip n Climb also brought in extra staff and trainers from other centres and they also managed to feed all the families with extremely gorgeous home cooked food. As soon as the food was put out, it disappeared it was that popular! There was no time pressures for the families and the staff worked extra hard to make sure that we were all well looked after. I certainly felt like we were in very capable and safe hands and I think this is certainly going to become a regular event for our families.

If you didn't make it to our event but want to give this a try with your child, I fully recommend this place as they have all the necessary equipment needed to make it a success. Just give them a call before you go and they'll make sure you are looked after! I've already promised my boy that we'll be back on his next Training Day!

"Thank you for organising a brilliant day. Jack loved every minute of it. We would never have considered climbing an activity he could take part in and really appreciate little hiccups allowing Jack to have new experiences and such fun doing them."

"Our three kids! Especially my boys with learning disabilities. And hypermobilty. Were really excited about it at first. Got in and weren't shore. And got a bit scared too!. We werent shore they'd take part! But I kept phrasing them! And saying if it didn't matter how far they got! And started clapping whenever they tried. And they loved it. They tried to climb abit higher. Never got to the middle but almost! It was fantastic! They started to laugh and smile! They loved it! And they sister us all too! Just to see the boys have a good try! And have fun. And that they loved it. I'd definitely go again! Just to see them try as hard as they did today. They clearly felt on top of the world and they should. I think with most of the kids it was the same. Hit and miss but all did the most they could and enjoyed themselves! Well done on the organisation of this! And thank you so much. We loved it! X"

"Thank you sooo much little hiccups. I cant thank you all enough for today... callum had an amazing time climbing and seeing him genuinely happy and hearing him laugh is priceless and just makes my heart melt. I was so proud of him and everyone else there today. Memories ill treasure for life xxx"

"Thank u for a brilliant afternoon"

"Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!!! Xx"

"Thanks again for another fantastic afternoon!! We've enjoyed every minute "

"What an amazing afternoon thankyou so much little hiccups for making it possible seeing my own n so many other children and adults conquering fears and climbing the walls was amazing there truly are no limits or barriers stopping our hiccups family xxxxxx well done all"

"Thank you so very much for a fantastic afternoon. One very tired boy who cant stop talking about it."

"Thankyou for a great day out xxxxx"

"Had a great afternoon thank you so much xx"

"Georgia really enjoyed herself!! And there were a couple of ladder like walls Yanni did quite well with - different to the climbing walls they have in Ilkley. Really great, thank you."

 

 

 


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