I am a childminder based in north Lincolnshire. I started up in 2019 with a vision of colour and brightness, I loved Grimms and was obsessed with babipur I’ve always been a wooden type of mum for my own children. More substantial and eco friendly. I had toy kitchens , loads of kallax units, toy garages you name it we had it - all wooden mind. It just was very bland. I came across hygge on social media also the curiosity approach too so I was in too kinda which to do. I chose hygge as it was a life style aswell not just for my business but for my family life aswell and at the end of the day my business and family came together.
I started with the wanderlust program which I absolutely loved. We spent more time outside foraging and making mobiles out of sticks and flowers we have found. We made nature crowns and I found the children were so much more content being outside more, collecting greenery and making their own creations rather than me having set items out telling them what to use and not really giving them a choice. I gave them free rein and they took it and loved it.
After I did the wanderlust which I still go by every so often, I bit the bullet and decided to go with the accreditation program which I must admit I started it and felt like am I gonna have time for this and I feel like the whole program helped me with this. I have always rushed with everything in life, always on the go and always late and rushing. This program personally has helped me to relax a little more, I don’t rush to get things done and I don’t need to plan weeks in advance for activities with the children which I used to. I’d be up printing and laminating and sticking things. I’ve found now I have white board tables or wooden boards which I write on for our labels. I plan in the moment, I go by children’s interest and on that evening maybe I’ll get the resources out for the next day if I know a child is in with a certain interest. I sometimes rearranging at lunch if they’ve taken an interest in something during the morning. I am a big fan of playdough and we use many resources and natural items to draw in the children. For example we were wanting to make robots and I remembered I had some grey playdough and I dug out some nuts and bolts and let them run wild with making robots out of playdough. I gave the resources and let them run.
Before playdough and after.
I have always loved the children being out doors. I don’t really like being outside when it’s cold but with the quote regarding the weather and unsuitable clothing I made sure to wrap up. I have provided children with overalls and get them to bring wellies in every day rain or shine. I transformed my garden for the children, i had so many areas to explore.. we went from a slide and a tunnel and a couple of others but to a mud kitchen, potion station, sand and water and a massive sand bit with digger and stones a full on construction site and the children are in their element. I believe now rain or shine we can go outside, I am in plans on making a shelter for even the colder days and having a heater above all being well so nothing will stop us. I’m very much wild and free with my own children with being outdoors and try to implement this with my families as I still have a few that are not a fan of being outside all year round. But they even see a difference in the mood of the children and first thing they do when they arrive is ask can they go outside. My garden is a massive asset to me and I’d love to be a full time outdoor setting.
Before outdoor setting
After outdoor setting
I was lucky to have an extension done to my home that gave my family a family room, which the children are still invited in. I converted my old lounge into our new play room which boost natural, calm and cosy. I love it, parents come in and say it feels so calm in here. We have fairy lights, reading nooks and home corners. Everything is free to use whenever they want. We had a messy room made as again I believe children learn so much from messy play, they’re more engaged and relaxed. We have paint to hand if they want to use, indoor sand pit and I find this room is when they’re more chilled I have one girl who sits for hours in the sand just pouring and scooping and digging. She’s in her element.
This course has helped me so much with myself giving myself time and not beating myself up if I’ve not made a goal, or done something and I’m not stressing as much as I used to. There are so many childminders around me that use lots of plastic and always say to me doesn’t the wood rot, can’t clean wood. Why use wood, some of it looks like junk. So I did doubt myself to use some of the resources I have but the whole natural approach makes it feel more cosy and calm without the bright colours distracting you so now following this I do feel now this is more substantial and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
I am still learning and introducing new ideas such as a family wall with the children’s family’s to make the parents feel valued as well as the children. I feel this will also help communication. We have a reward chart with the children’s photos on them and these make the children feel so valued. I am just so glad I found this course and can’t thank you enough for changing my ways! I feel like this has helped me with my business aswell as more parents are pulled towards the hygge way, gentle parenting, relaxed home environment and not the chaos it can bring. The compliments and praise I get from parents are non ending and they all try to move towards a hygge lifestyle to some extent.
I’ve rambled too much. But again thank you this is just the beginning of a trulyAwesome adventure!