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Hello from MNHQ...
Where we've been busy updating our Backpacks Reviews, ready for all that small-child-bundling to faraway places you're bound to be doing over the hols.
But if holiday-bundling is not part of your summer agenda, you can always take a mood-boosting tour around our new Baby Name Finder. If you want to knock Walter off the Most Loved Names list or can't for the life of you see why Nerissa would plump for a stem-ginger organic wheat-free biscuit over a Fig Roll, now's your chance to let your prejudices run riot.
Now for this week's parenting news ...
Bottlefeeding advice problems: Mothers may not be getting the best advice about bottlefeeding because midwives are confused about how much they can tell them. NHS data suggests 75% of mothers have used formula by six weeks but, according to a poll of 110 midwives funded by the formula milk industry, nearly two thirds of midwives don't usually provide information on formula milk and how to make up feeds. (BBC Online 26.07.09)
Toy warning over swine flu: Nurseries should remove teddy bears and soft toys to help contain the spread of swine flu, new government guidelines say. They also suggest stopping children sharing crayons and colouring pencils during the pandemic, and suspending schools' morning assemblies. Officials say their advice is sensible, but they have been accused of overreacting. (Times 29.07.09) Meanwhile, it has emerged that the BBC may have to clear its autumn schedules to make way for educational programming if swine-flu outbreaks lead to all schools being closed. (Times 28.07.09)
Other stories in brief
WIN A UK FAMILY BREAK WORTH £1,000! Mum Take Me Here is a Family & Friends Railcard competition for children under 16. All they have to do is nominate their favourite family-friendly day out in the UK by train. They can submit up to 250 words of description, together with photos or video clips. The three best entries will win an amazing family trip, worth £1,000, to the UK destination of their choice. To find out more, click here.
This week's prizes are:
SHARE YOUR FAIL-SAFE FAMILY RECIPES - AND YOU COULD WIN £100 WAITROSE VOUCHERS. Mumsnet is working with Waitrose to produce a six-episode web TV series that will launch in September, and, right now, they want your input to help shape the episode on cooking everyday dishes for the family. Post your ideas and recipes here and we'll put your name in the draw to win £100 in Waitrose vouchers.
Quote of the week
LadyGlencoraPalliser gets a lesson in manners-management from her 12-year-old: "The cat jumped up on the kitchen counter and started to eat a piece of ham. I removed the cat and put the ham in his bowl. Cue DD: 'Do you really think you should have done that? You're just rewarding him for his bad behaviour, you know.'"
Looking for a summer day out? Mumsnetters' suggestions this week include
Aitch's TV round-up: How the Other Half Live, Thurs 30 July, Channel 4, 9pm
I happen to know that the holy grail of TV commissioning at the moment is "the next Secret Millionaire" and, look, clever old Channel 4 might just have hit the jackpot again with How the Other Half Live. It's a bit of a cheek, really - a cunning blend of Wife Swap and Secret Millionaire - but it is heartening and horrifying in equal measure to see how a relatively small amount of money donated by the wealthy family can utterly transform the prospects of their less fortunate counterparts...
Blog of the week: A taste of summer?
abbieslife rapidly revises her lashings-of-ginger-beer summer-hols fantasy: "I've had visions in my head of long walks, picnics, home-made ice lollies, high tea - the list is endless. But it is only now that I realise all this comes from Famous Five books. My summer will almost certainly consist of CBeebies, tantrums, Haribo, soft play and more CBeebies..."
Bursting to blog? Why not start your own?
Recipe of the week: oopsacoconut's raspberry and white chocolate muffins
Now the summer-fruit season's in full swing, these raspberry-packed muffins are just the thing for a scrummy, slightly decadent teatime treat. And because they're a no-fuss, mix-in-one-bowl job, you can make them with your kids - or even (gasp!) get them to make them for you.
For more get-'em-in-the-kitchen ideas, read the Mumsnet guide to How to Teach Your Child to Cook.
That's all, we're off to moan about the Met office...
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