Our Team - Laura

Introducing our Organisers – Laura

Introducing our Organiser Laura
Where I run markets – Melksham, Chippenham and Corsham Bigger and Little Pickles Markets.
What item I can’t live without other than my family? My mobile phone I guess 🙈
How many children do I have? 2 girls. Ava and Elsie! Yes, their initials are A+E!!!
If I woke up tomorrow what animal would I be? Well, an insect I would be a fly- who would want to be a fly on the wall !!!!
Favourite place to be- Making memories and have fun with my girls. 💕
Favourite children’s book. ? Each peach pear plum. A fav of mine when I was young.
Cinema or fancy restaurant? Both. Eat first then afilm!!
Spring, summer, autumn or winter? Got to be winter having fun in the snow ⛄
One thing I always carry in my handbag? Food for the kids!!!
One bit of information I wish I had known before parenting? It’s the hardest yet most rewarding job in the world xx
Best bargain found at Little Pickles ? 2 kites in a Tin for £1. Hours of fun with the kids.

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Little Pickles Market Owner

Mummy Pickle – Little Pickles Markets Owner

Welcome to our new series introducing you to the team behind Little Pickles Markets, starting off with Me, Jessamine aka Mummy Pickle. Proud owner and founder, I have spent the last 7 years helping families save and recoup money whilst raising their young families.

Right question time, if you have any other questions please don’t hesitate to ask.

Where do you run Markets? – I oversee the running of the whole of Little Pickles Market, so I spend most of my time behind a computer screen. But you will see me popping up at events in Bournemouth, Swindon, Frome and Bradford on Avon. Plus at some of the Wiltshire/Somerset Bigger Pickles Markets as a buyer too.

What is the item you can’t live without other than your family?  – Argh, I really don’t want to say this but it has to be my phone. I am a snap happy Mum forever capturing my children as they grow. But also always on hand to answer emails and keep up with my social media too.

How many children do you have? – I like to keep myself busy so have 5 not so Little Pickles. They are now all school-aged, 4, 6, 8, 11 and 16. I have 4 daughters and just 1 very outnumbered son.

If you woke up tomorrow as an animal, what animal would you choose to be and why? – It would have to be a Giraffe, it is my favourite animal. I would love to overlook the rest of the world from way up high.

Where is your favourite place to be and why? – On a sunny warm beach with my 5 pickles, switched off the outside world. Early this year we went to Cornwall and made some lovely memories that we all cherish.  

Mummy Pickles Family 

What is your favourite children’s book? – Totally random, but I loved the Where’s Spot books when I was a kid and when my Pickles were younger they loved them too, shame they have grown out of them too quick!

Cinema or fancy restaurant? – As I have a history for almost nodding off in the cinema, it’s got to be eating a lovely fancy dinner with friends.  

Are you spring, summer, fall, or winter and let us know why? – Summer, summer, summer, did you guess I love summer!!! Even though the weather isn’t always guaranteed in this country, the light evenings make my days feel longer. Meaning the kids and I have longer to go and explore.

Name one thing you always carry in your handbag? – My purse, with 5 children it is constantly taking a battering or I always leave it to the last minute to fill up the car or I need an emergency chocolate fix to see me through the day.

One bit of information you wish you’d known before becoming a parent? – Every child is different and even though you can pick up bits of advice, each model (Little Pickle) doesn’t come with their unique manual, so it may be a case of trial and error to get things right. Trust your instincts and try not to doubt yourself.

Enough from me look out for the next team members answers in the coming weeks.

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October Half Term Ideas

October Half Term Ideas

The beginning of October has gone and my children only have 8 more days at school before it’s half term!! How did that happen? I am now racking my brains for ideas how to keep the Pickles entertained. So thought I would share my October Half Term Ideas with you all.

It will be nice to have a week and a half again with no routine. No 6 am wake ups to get my eldest 2 to the bus stop by 7.30am.

Now I need to decide what we are going to do with the days that the pickles are off school. Well, my bank balance is still recovering from the summer holiday. Plus having to buy school uniform, shoes and bus passes, for the kids return to work last month. Also with the festivities only 11 weeks away (Sorry, if like me you are trying to ignore this!) I will be watching the pennies to go towards Christmas surprises.

Luckily we have National Trust Membership and lots of NT properties close to home. If the weather is fine we can go and explore some of the houses and gardens at local NT properties. One of our favourite NT properties is Stourhead, it always looks lovely in the autumn so definitely worth a trip. 

Not a National Trust member then I’m sure you will have a nearby park or woods. Where you will still go and have some autumn fun. If the leaves are dry the Pickles can collect a bag full of leaves and twigs as they make lovely pictures, this will give us an indoor activity if we have a wet day.  Although I am not a fan of walking in the rain I will have to brace myself if it’s  rainy as we all of wellies, raincoats and the 2 littlest Pickles both have rain trousers thanks to Dry Kids.

Now that the Pickles are a bit older on a fine day we will go the park with some bats and balls to have a game of rounders or cricket, although we don’t stick to the rules or are too strict on scoring as this prevents battles. It’s just so that they can all run around to let off steam and wear them out.

We have a subscription to Now TV  so love to have a film marathon, with buckets full of popcorn. Nothing like a lovely lazy film afternoon to relax and recharge our batteries.

When I was little we used to have indoor picnics on autumn afternoons. If you cook with your Pickles then this could fill a lot of the day as you could make cakes, sausage rolls, cheese straws etc with them and then have these at the picnic. Cooking isn’t my thing so I will get the picnic bits at the supermarket or just raid the fridge and do with what we have at home. 

I think am going to try an Indoor Treasure Hunt if it’s the weather isn’t on our side this Half Term. Now my children’s rooms are always untidy. It seems that as soon as I finish tidying it and walk downstairs the toys and books throw themselves on the floor!! So I am going to make a list, for each Pickle. For example, they can find a Barbie with clothes on, a red car. They will have to collect 10 things each and get a prize for doing it nothing massive. But before they get their prize they will have put their items away in the right place 1st.

My last saving grace for a wet half term is our local scrapstore. The pickles can go and have a rummage, picking up all sorts of bits for crafting, including big sheets of paper to stick the bits onto. At our local one, we can fill a bag full of goodies for a minimal fee. Coming home with enough to keep the Pickles amused for ages. There are now Scrapstores all over the UK, so I’m sure there is one local to you.

Well, I hope these ideas will help you have a great half term. I have now reminded myself of all the great things we can do and am actually looking forward to having the Pickles at home again.

Written by Jessamine aka Mummy Pickle, you can follow our families half term adventures over in Instagram

 

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Prosecco Mum

Prosecco Mum’s review of Little Pickles Market

Guest Post – Check out Jess from Prosecco Mum, review and thoughts on Little Pickles Market

Prosecco Mum

One of the things I’ve learnt since becoming a mum is that babies don’t tend to wear clothes for long before they suddenly go through those bloody ‘growth spurts’ and burst out of clothes quicker than you can say, Michelin Man. 


So I’m a huge fan of Nearly New Baby Sales where you can pick up new, or as good as new, bargains for a fraction of their original price!


I have sold at a fair few Little Pickles Markets now and not only do I realise my children have a better wardrobe than me and are the new reason I teeter on bankruptcy each month but I realise how spoilt they are; rows and rows of clothes all hung on rails still with tags on, shoes that haven’t even been unclipped and every gizmo and gadget, you can guarantee they’ve had it. Well, probably not quite so much with Arlo, poor second child, I learnt my lesson with him and he still parades round with pink muslins and pink bibs on. But gender neutral clothing’s all the rage now, isn’t it?!


I don’t tend to buy clothes at these things but the last time I was selling I had a quick peruse at some of the other stallholders bits before the frenzied buyers burst through the door, and I managed to pick up a Gro Clock (I’m glad I brought it second hand because it doesn’t bloody work for Sofia she just bursts in at the crack of dawn saying “my clocks still blue mummy”) and a Maxi Cosi Family Fix base – that was a real bargain. On other occasions I have picked up some nearly new Clarks shoes for Sofia for nursery and a brand new bike seat, even though neither of us own a bike…but, you never know, maybe one day – and it was a bargain!

 

Today I sold at the Eastleigh market which is held at Fleming Park leisure centre – it’s a really busy market and ran from 10.30-12, so long enough to be constantly busy and not enough time to get bored or take up a whole day! The queue was out the door and around the carpark and I people’s faces were peeping through the door at 10am, which heaped the pressure on as I frantically tried to unload my jumbo bags full of one man’s treasure.

I had a great day today, I made over £200 and the best bit, is unlike carboot sales, people are all here for one thing; baby stuff so every person walking round is a potential buyer of your items. I was selling to make money, of course, but also to start ridding the house of bags and bags of bits that I’d accumulated over the past 3.5 years. By 11am my stall had quite literally been ransacked and I’d sold the big items such as the Sleepyhead, baby bath, baby carrier, stroller pushchair and shedloads of clothes. Also, unlike a carboot sale it’s all inside which is a real bonus as it will never be ‘rained off’ and you’ll always be warm and dry!

So what was the key to today’s success? 

  • Having a mixture of items – clothes, toys, books as well as some of the bigger items as mentioned 
  • It probably also helped that I had both boys and girls clothing; though obviously if you only have one, there’s not much you can do about that!
  • Pricing the items right – in hindsight I probably did the Sleepyhead too cheap but it’s gone now and no longer residing in the kids playroom, the clothes I marked anything from 50p (for leggings, tights and baby vests) up to £7 (for brand new with tags John Lewis/Gap/Ted Baker type items) and everything in between
  • Be prepared – I mark up all clothing labels with brand, size and price, it not only makes it easier for the people looking but also for me when selling!
  • Presentation – I always think that even though it’s a second hand/nearly new sale, it doesn’t mean that everything should look shabby….myself included! 
  • Good quality items – I only sell things I’d be happy to buy myself and I am fussy. So I do wash, iron and hang all of my clothes ahead of the sale.

Do you visit nearly new sales? Have you ever been to a Little Pickles market before?

You can see where your nearest market is by clicking here, and you never know I might see you at one if you’re local!

You can find Jess from Prosecco Mum on all the socials below

www.proseccomum.com

www.facebook.com/proseccomum

www.twitter.com/proseccomum

www.instagram.com/the_prosecco_mum

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family decluttering tips

10 Family Decluttering Tips

Life can be hectic with your Little Pickles, work and other commitments. Sometimes the house can get a little neglected and before you know it chaos has struck. So we thought we would share 10 family decluttering tips.

  1. Get the Little Pickles involved. – Sometimes the kids can be very helpful. So take time with them to go through toys and clothes they have grown out of. Once sorted you can put away for younger siblings, pass on to friends and family or ready to sell. They can also help put the things they want to keep away too.
  2. Schedule Times to do it and keep to it – The weeks can whizz by and before you know it there is more and more clutter builds. So pull out your diary and set some days or a couple of hours aside to have a clear out.
  3. Assign a home for everything – Most of us are guilty of having a pile or two of things that have no designated home. Change that make sure every item you own has somewhere to live. Then when you are tidying it will be put away instead of moving from one place to the next.
  4. Break it down into small steps – When you think about all the jobs that need doing it can seem pretty daunting. So make a list and break jobs down into small more achievable steps. It’s always great to tick lots of small jobs off than waiting ages to tick off a huge task.
  5. Nothing on the floor – A clear floor a clear mind, a room can instantly look much tidier if the floor is clear. So once the kids have finished playing encourage them to tidy up. Clear those shoes from in the hallway, pick up that used mug or plate.
  6. Have an in-tray and out-tray – As your pickles grow the forms seem to be never ending. Whether it is school trip letters, clubs enrollment forms or that tax credits return. Pop them into the in-tray and then you know where they all are. Once they have been completed pop in the out-tray ready to be returned or posted. When your pickles are older it can be their responsibility to empty letters out of their school book bags themselves.
  7. Make a list of target areas – you might have a problem area in your house. I know ours is our hallway, as it is so easy to walk in the door and dump shoes coats. Or create a pile of things to go up on the stairs. If you have an area that bugs you make it a priority to clear it once and for all and lay down the rules to keep it clutter-free.
  8. Clean up after meals – it is so easy to have your tea then feel full and want to just chill on the sofa. When you get up to go to bed there’s nothing worse than seeing the dishwasher still needs packing. If you clear up straight a meal then it may make you feel better.
  9. As your Little Pickle grows out of clothes and toys sort them – there are a huge number of parents that tell us they put everything their children have grown out of into the loft or garage without sorting. Sort things ready to sell as you go, then once you book a table it is a case of turning up on the day, unload your boxes and make some money.
  10. Make all the beds every morning – this one is self-explanatory and simple, but can make a huge difference. It’s much nicer to climb into a made bed every night. Even a toddler can kind of straighten their bed up every morning.

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