Thursday, 19 July 2012

Little Acorns, Barrow

I've been a big coward until recently when it comes to play groups and children's activities. I'm always scared of what I call 'smothers' (smug mothers) being there and telling me off for whatever I'm doing. But recently, occupying Daughter at home has become increasingly difficult.Slightly too young for most crafts (she ends up eating the materials) but beginning to bore of puddle walks, Sesame Street, her Megasketcher and most things which aren't my wallet - seriously, she's obsessed with pulling my cards out and handing them to people! what have I been teaching her? - I decided to bite the bullet and go along to my local toddler group, Little Acorns in the Suffolk village of Barrow.

The ladies here really went out of their way to make me feel welcome when I arrived and made a point of chatting to me throughout the session.I didn't feel like a stranger, and for someone with raging anxiety and PND, that was exactly what I needed - I'm glad this was the first group I've attended because it's given me the confidence to go along to more.

The basic structure to a Little Acorns Monday morning is:

Craft & free - play
Snack time - toast, fresh fruit, juice & raisins with tea or coffee for Mum and Dad
More free play
Tidy up
Sing along with instruments.

For just £2 for Daughter, I found it incredibly good value. The group has loads of really good equipment, including some soft play bits, a few tricycles, a toy kitchen and a baby corner.

To be honest, I'm not a social club sort of mum. I never really feel like I fit in when I go to these things and either end up chatting to the kids, or sat alone in the corner imagining the women comparing birth stories as the old Yorkshire men in Monty Python (this story still to come)... but, I didn't feel unwelcome at Little Acorns nor was I horribly embarrassed by my social ineptitude at any point. Whilst I didn't come away with the impression of 'fitting in', I came away not feeling like an outsider, which is really something. When we return from our holiday to Shropshire next week (sans Internet), I'll take Daughter along again as she had a wonderful time. All in all, a very good experience.

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