Open Farm Sunday

On Sunday 8th June there was a national day called ‘Open Farm Sunday’ which enabled people to visit local farms free of charge to find out more about the day to day running of a farm, plus information about how our food is produced.

Seeing the not so great forecast for the weekend we didn’t make any solid plans for Sunday, as we thought we would have a day indoors doing some jobs and playing games. But we woke up to the sun shining bright so thought we should make the most of it as you never quite know how long it will last in this country.

So after seeing a few tweets that morning I remembered it was Open Farm Sunday, so I took to the website to see which was our local farm. After lunch we headed off to Rowdefield Farm, Rowde, Wiltshire which was only a 10 minute drive from our house.

We arrived and parked in a nearby field much to the worry of the pickles that thought the car might sink as it had rained over the last week!

This pickles started off with sitting on some farm machinery including tractors, diggers, quad bikes and topped off with a sit on a combine harvester which Daddy was very excited about too.

Then the kids planted some cress seeds, which we amazingly managed to get home without spilling dirt all over the car. Now the cress is growing well on the kitchen window sill. We then took a look at some farm animals including sheep, horses, chickens, and some very cute chicks and ducklings.


Then the part Faryl couldn’t wait for Tractor Rides, we all enjoyed this especially Baby Pickle who giggled all the way. It was a bumpy ride across a field.

After we finished on the tractor we headed to the barns to find out more about crops, the farming year and where our food comes from. Which was the whole meaning of the day, it really interested the bigger pickles. The afternoon was finished off with the pickles playing on hay bales and racing around in the ride on toy tractors.

So all in all we have a fantastic free day out and will have 7th June 2015 in the diary to do it all again next year, will you be joining us?

Written by Jessamine Hislop-Newton, Mummy to 5 Pickles, Founder and Owner of Little Pickles Markets



Instagram @mrsmummypickle

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Half Term Activities on a Budget

Yay it’s Half Term which I love due to the lack of routine, yes you may have guessed that I don’t lead a conventional life, well I do have 5 children and work for myself, so routine is definitely not my thing!! So the the holidays for us bring on lazy day’s, no school runs (can you hear the excitement in my typing) and taking it one day at a time. As much as we would love PJ day’s, the kids will soon need to be entertained to prevent them from pulling each other’s hair out.

So I thought I would share some of our budget day’s out with you to all.

Half Term

  • So first on the list following on from our love PJ day’s, why not grab some popcorn, treats and let the kids chose some good old classic Disney movies to fill a couple of hours, Little Mermaid and Toy Story are among my favourites.

  • There is nothing quite like a walk in the fresh air to wear the pickles out, we always enjoy a day at country parks, with free or minimal parking charges/entry fees. Pack a picnic and you have a cheapy day out. Couple of our favourites are – Moors Valley Country Park, you can watch the trains go by on the railway, follow the nature trails or the pickles can burn off some steam on the adventure playgrounds.  Lydiard Park A fantastic adventure playground separated into different areas for different ages. then there are lovely grounds to explore around Lydiard House and the lake. Some think parks and walks are only for fair weather, but that is why wellies and waterproofs are an essential part of any families wardrobes, well we do live in rainy England afterall.

  • Swimming is a great way to tire the kids out and keep them active and free swimming is offered to under 16s by many local councils during the school holidays, so make the most of this.

  • Refresh the bookshelf for free – If your house is anything like ours it is oer run by books. But the pickles especially Jolie (my little bookworm) love to get their hands on new and exciting books to read, so we head to the library to pick some some fresh titles and some old favourite we don’t own. If you are not a member of your local library you can join for free and start borrowing books straightaway, if you aren’t sure where your local library is the visit to find out.

  • Bring out the artist in your little pickles – My kids love to make creations, Lexia so much so that she has her very own creation station in the dining room. It is a chest of drawers full to the brim with different papers, pens, card, felt, stickers, glitter, pencils, pva glue, paints and the list goes on, all regularly restocked for a few pounds at our local scrapstore. So from sticking, cutting (with supervision), painting, drawing we can have hours of messy fun (thank god for an oilcloth on the table).

  • Outdoor play – we are lucky enough to have a lovely large, if not a little wild garden. So with a swing, big trampoline, slide and a shed full of bikes and ride ons, we can waste hours having fun out there. So if you have a garden however large or small, make the most of it and let the pickles play.

  • Rejig the toy boxes – Over the last 13 years, I have spent thousands on toys for birthdays and Christmas for all the pickles, but they all have their usual ones leaving others to gather dust and think that your money has been wasted. The kids often find a new love the forgotten toys, once they are dug out from the bottom of the toy box, under the bed of on top of the shelf, so go on release the forgotten toys!!!

  • Cinema Outing – As most people have realised cinema viewing can be pricey especially if you buy the over-priced popcorn and other snacks at the kiosk. I always take our own snacks along, that’s one or the pro’s of having an oversized Mary Poppins sized handbag that can fit just about everything in. Most cinemas including Odeon and Vue have morning showings during the holidays, these special viewings are usually only a few pounds. Plus the sound is not a as deafeningly loud during these screenings so you don’t leave with your ear’s ringing, oh gosh how old do I sound!

So that is some of our tips for keeping your ‘Little Pickles’ amused this half term. If you have any hints of your own please feel free to comment and share with all of our followers.

Written by Jessamine Hislop-Newton, Mummy to 5 Pickles, Founder and Owner of Little Pickles Markets



Instagram @mrsmummypickle

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Flexible Family Working

Please let me introduce myself (if you don’t know already), I am Jessamine, owner and founder of Little Pickles Markets plus mummy to my fantastic but ever challenging 5 children (The Pickles) Tegan, Lexia, Jolie, Faryl and Aliza.  I live in the beautiful Wiltshire countryside and work from home around the pickles, which provides me with the flexibility to spend time with them.

A little bit about the business

Little Pickles Markets was born in Winchester in September 2010, when I wanted a new challenge that fitted in around 3 children. Now after relocating to Wiltshire and two more pickles later the business is booming. Little Pickles Markets has grown and is expanding at a rapid rate, with a fantastic team, I am very proud of.

Named after the pet name my late Grandad (a resourceful recycler) had given me and my siblings as children. This is very apt as even though we are helping parents save money, our markets also help perfectly good items find new homes and not ending up in landfill, so having a positive effect on our children’s environment and future.

Our markets are all held at weekends in indoor pushchair accessible venues. Tables are available for parents to hire to sell their good quality nearly new baby and children’s items, from Maternity to 8 years. We charge buyers a minimal £1 entry fee and all little pickles are free.

What the role involves?

You will be a self employed Market Organiser where you will be responsible for the following:

  • Liaising and booking the market venue.

  • Distribution of leaflets promoting your market.

  • Displaying a banner to promote the market.

  • Using social media to promote your markets.

  • Getting to the market 1 hour before opening to ensure the stall holders are all set up and ready to go.

  • Collection of money from people attending the market.

  • Ensuring the venue is tidy at the end.

  • Completing your market summary.

We advise each market will take approx 8 – 15 hours. This will involve 3 to 6 hours distributing marketing material, 2 -5 hours of computer work event listings, emails and social media and then 3 to 4 hours running the market on the day. These hours will be spread over the weeks running up to the market.

Existing organisers run anything from 1-4 markets a month but we would like you to hold a minimum of 9 markets within a 12 month period.


What can you earn?

This is uncapped and will be reflective of your effort and productivity. The more markets you run and the more buyers you welcome the more you will earn.

Why join Little Pickles Markets?

Little Pickles Markets is an award winning name in nearly new sales and we have a huge demand for our established sales, so there is scope to cover a much larger area and eventually the whole of the UK.

With our experience within the industry, our team offer a wealth of knowledge in organising these events, so will be able to give you step by step guidance and support you to have the same success in organising your own events.

We have a huge web presence, with a well rated google website, increasingly viewed blog and impressive social media following.

What we can offer you?

  • A step by step 6/8 week plan to help you successfully organise your first couple of markets.
  • A comprehensive handbook
  • An organiser’s support network
  • All the kit for you to run successful markets
  • Use of our website to list your events
  • Access to Facebook Pages
  • email address
  • Ongoing support
  • A chance to earn an uncapped amount of money whilst working your own choice of hours.

If you think the role of Market Organiser will suit you and you would like to join the Little Pickles Team.  Please leave a comment below and we can arrange to have a chat about getting you started.

Written by Jessamine Hislop-Newton, Mummy to 5 Pickles, Founder and Owner of Little Pickles Markets



Instagram @mrsmummypickle

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Top Ten Tips When Travelling Abroad With Tots….

Now that Easter is over, most of us are looking ahead to our summer holiday’s so if you are thinking of going abroad with your ‘Little Pickles’ this year or next, then here’s some top tips from Emma.

  1. The Destination -Opt for a country that will involve the shortest flying time as well as a short transfer to your accommodation.
  1. The Resort -Outside of the hotel itself, it is worth investigating if there are safe pathways to your local amenities. I would advise avoiding a hilly resort, the last thing you would want to do is climb hills with a buggy in the heat. Choose a sandy beach that is suitable for children, with a gentle slope into the sea.
  1. The Airport – Consider flying from smaller regional airports. i.e. Southampton, Bournemouth, Bristol. With smaller terminals and fewer flights arriving and departing, you will certainly start off your holiday in a relaxed way. Miss out the hustle and bustle of larger international airports for ie. Gatwick or Heathrow.
  1. Check in – Most airlines allow you to check in online from 7 days prior to departure with the ability to select your seating. It is never guaranteed that a family with young children will be allocated seating together, so always worth paying the small supplement for pre-booking your seats. Also, fast track boarding is becoming popular nowadays. Again at a supplement but well worth the extra rather than being queued up behind 200 fellow passengers trying to get seated on the plane.
  1. The Hotel -Think deeply into your accommodation requirements. Is a basic hotel room sufficient for your young tot? Maybe you’ll need a fridge to store milk and bottled water. Again is a hotel room suitable for getting young ones to sleep at night. Maybe you will need to consider an apartment or interconnecting hotel rooms so you can relax without tip toeing around the a sleeping child.
  1. Board basis – All Inclusive properties are well worth comparing to self-catering prices. Having a young family myself and having tried self-catering vs all inclusive, the latter works perfectly if you don’t want the hassle of waiting in restaurants for your meals, have fussy children, special dietary requirements, allergies etc. Also most of all inclusive properties offer entertainment for adults & children day and night with the opportunity for your tots to have fun in the kids clubs. Generally, kids clubs start from the age of 4 years, however, there are many properties that offer day crèches and an evening babysitting service so you can have a few hours tot free.
  1. Baby Essentials – Many airlines allow buggies, travel cots and car seats in the hold free of charge. So despite the ever increasing hold luggage supplements, it would be worth choosing an airline that will allow free items for your tots. You can however hire these things at a lot of family friendly hotels.
  1. Kids Clothes – If you’re heading for the heat, choose clothes made from natural fibres – sweat irritates delicate skins and can lead to prickly heat or sweat rash. Expect to change your baby’s clothes up to three times a day particularly if they’re not used to the heat and will sweat a lot. Children will need two sets of clothes per day, and sunhats with wide brims and neck flaps are worth-while when playing outdoors. Equally don’t overlook the fact that children’s eyes are more vulnerable to glare of the sun than yours get them sunglasses or goggles with elasticated straps, which stay on better.
  1. The Extras- Over the years I have spent a fortune on inflatable lilo’s, boats etc for the pools/beach from local shops. Head to Poundland and grab yourself a selection of inflatables before you go and for £1 you don’t mind leaving them there for other children to use.When to book – Book early to take advantage of free child places, big discounts and low deposits.
  1. Book next year’s holiday and pay off throughout the year, so it won’t seem like such a large expense and you can budget for this monthly.

So what are you waiting for go on contact me know for more information on booking your holiday.

Written By Emma Westwood – Independent Travel Expert

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Weetabix Ultimate Sport’s Day Brunch with Tania Farah

So what is your family favourite breakfast? Here at Little Pickles HQ it is definitely Weetabix so versatile, so many ways to to eat it hot or cold, with milk or yoghurt, with fresh fruit or dried fruit, the list is endless so the kids never get bored.


So when we were invite to the ‘Ultimate Sport’s Day Brunch’ hosted by Weetabix, we wanted to know more and jumped at the chance to join everyone in London.

So Lexia and I jumped on the 7.35am (very early for a Saturday morning) train to London for our mini adventure. Then when we reached Paddington hopped on the tube, Lexia was a bit nervous about this as it was her first time on the underground but was soon enjoying the experience.

When reached The Orange in Pimlico the fun began, where there was ‘Magic Ben’ the entertainer to keep the pickles busy with balloon modeling, colouring and general messing about. While us Mummy’s chatted, giggled and found out more about Weetabix.


The lovely Tania Farah, wife of Mo joined us with her ‘Little Pickles’ Rhianna, Aisha and Aman.

The kids enjoyed Weetabix while us Mummies were treated to a very yummy brunch, I chose eggs benedict and pastries which was a real treat, very tasty, but not as healthy as Weetabix (heyho there goes my diet again, I must try harder!!)

Sian Porter also joined us to fill us in about the nutritional benefits of Weetabix

This is what I learn’t they are low fat, low sugar, high fibre, wholegrain food fortified with B vitamins (thiamin, niacin, riboflavin and folic acid), iron and 2 weetabix only contains 1/16th of your daily allowance of salt. So all in all a pretty good breakfast to help build the future champions.

Lexia enjoyed making new friends and having a trip to London, plus while we were so close we went to see Buckingham Palace, another first for her. Then we were off back to the station, leaving London to head home to the rest of the pickles in Wiltshire.


More Information on Weetabix Ultimate Sports Day

London Olympics hero Mo Farah has been revealed as the face of Weetabix’s Ultimate Sports Day campaign, which offers youngsters the chance to create and take part in their dream school sports day.

Farah’s double-gold at London 2012, coupled with his now legendary “Mobot” celebration, installed the Londoner as a national treasure and cemented his position as one the best British track stars of all time. Farah has joined forces with the nation’s favourite breakfast cereal to back a campaign that aims to encourage UK kids to get excited about exercise.

Children are invited to design a unique and exciting obstacle they would like to see at their own sports day, with two winners then seeing their creations come to life at an exciting day of sport at the Olympic Park this summer. With the London Marathon on the horizon, Weetabix has launched the Ultimate Sports Day campaign with the hope of encouraging children and parents across the UK to fuel future champions with Weetabix, and to inspire kids to get active by reigniting the passion for sport the nation felt during the 2012 Olympics.

Olympic gold medallist and Weetabix fan Mo Farah, commented: “I’m really looking forward to being part of the Weetabix Ultimate Sports Day campaign. As an athlete and, more importantly as a dad, I know how vital it is to inspire kids get active and a big part of that is making sure they get a nutritious start to the day.

“Being a champion isn’t just about being the best; it’s about looking after yourself and having the attitude to maintain that. It would be amazing if we ended up fuelling future champions this summer – and hopefully I’ll get some extra fuel ahead of the Marathon!”

On top of the Ultimate Sports Day, hundreds of kids across the UK are in with the chance to win a range of prizes, including sports equipment for their school and individual prizes such as top-of-the-range trainers.

Wendy French, Senior Brand Manager at Weetabix said; “It is enormously exciting to unite two national treasures in British sporting hero Mo Farah and Weetabix, the nation’s favourite breakfast cereal. Through the Ultimate Sports Day campaign, we’re keen to remind mums and teachers that a bowl of Weetabix in the morning helps children with stamina, building muscle and bone strength.”

In order to enter the Ultimate Sports Day campaign, simply pick up a pack and visit, letting Weetabix know what a dream sports day obstacle would be: whether it’s a giant sack race or a one-of-a-kind relay – the more creative the concept, the better.

Two winners and their schools will be selected and invited to the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park on Monday 14th July 2014, to take part in 2014’s most exciting day of sport under the watchful eye of Olympic legend Mo Farah and fuelled by Weetabix.

Written by Jessamine Hislop-Newton, Mummy to 5 Pickles, Founder and Owner of Little Pickles Markets



Instagram @mrsmummypickle

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