Sunday, 11 July 2010

Messy Play by Huggies® Wipes Blogger Challenge

Before I talk about Cybermummy, I need to tell you (very, very late) about the Huggies Messy Play Challenge. I’ve had these pictures for a while and been so stupidly busy with work that I haven’t had a chance to post them:

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Eleanor’s main source of messy play these days is food, though with the lack of clean floors in our house at the moment, she’s also getting a lot of wipe action on our feet, every time we pick her up after she’s been crawling around! As we did with Rosemary, we are following the baby-led weaning (BLW) route. It is fantastic and has worked really well for both of them. But it is definitely not the cleanest way of learning how to eat. One of the catchphrases that goes with BLW is ‘Food is fun until you’re one’, because the babies continue to get all the nutrients they need from the breastmilk (adjusting their intake of milk according to how much or how little food they’re consuming). (I’m not sure how it works with formula-fed babies, though I imagine it’s fairly similar.) We had been using flannels to clean Eleanor up after meals, but she started getting quite spotty (probably because we weren’t cleaning the flannels frequently enough, of course), so we switched to wipes, which leads to less spotty cheeks (though not especially environmentally conscious!).

I’m afraid I’m one of those mums who tends to avoid messy play in the house as far as possible. Presented with the plea ‘Can I do some painting?’ I will do my utmost to find something else to do instead – often baking, which probably takes much more cleaning up. And gluing? No. If I have anything to do with it, she gets to do that maybe twice a year. (Fortunately, Chris is more up for messy play, providing the plastic sheet is out, she wears an apron and she only paints on the paper.) So, when there’s an opportunity for messy play at playgroup or the children’s centre, Rosemary laps it up. And I’m very happy to let her go for it, because someone else will be cleaning up the mess (if it’s at the children’s centre, that person might well be my sister, so sorry Eva!). And, yes, we make prodigious use of wipes to clean up paint, cake mixture, glue, felt-tip pen, mud… when she does get the chance to get messy.

What about you? Do you let your children loose with the paints and the mud pies whenever they want to? Do you limit it to other settings? Do you have some incredibly organised strategy that allows them to get messy without creating lots of cleaning up for you (please, please, please share your secret, if so)?

The next half an hour I don’t really have, I will be telling you all about our trip to London and my wonderful day at Cybermummy. (So, that will probably be just in time for next year’s conference, then!

If you fancy winning a Huggies goodie bag, why not take some pictures of your kids getting messy? The rules are below, but there are only a few days left to do it, I’m afraid, as the closing date is 14 July.

clip_image002Messy Play by Huggies® Wipes Blogger Challenge

Inspired by some of the Huggies® mums recent posts, Huggies® Baby Wipes wants to see your photos of your little ones really getting messy. Child psychologist Janine Spencer says, “Giving children the freedom to play messily helps them develop their imagination and social skills. It boosts their confidence and helps them understand the world around them. That’s a small price to pay for a bit of mess.”

The rules are as follows

  1. The messier your baby is in the photo the better. (The challenge is cleaning up!)
  2. Post the photo to your blog with The Messy Play by Huggies Wipes challenge. (It can be an old photo or a previous post).
  3. Send a link of your blog post featuring your Messy Play photo to @Huggies_UK on Twitter or to participate.
  4. Check out to see all the blogger submissions and links to their blogs. Submissions will also be shouted out by @Huggies_UK on Twitter.
  5. The top 3 messiest entries will receive Huggies® gift packs of Huggies merchandise. (and if the messiest children are mine, you are definitely doing a bad job…)

[I am a Huggies Mum and an independent blogger. My affiliation with Huggies does not change my capacity to blog independently. I have agreed to disclose in my postings when I receive a product, sample or sponsorship from Huggies. In no way am I financially rewarded by Huggies. They sponsored me to go to Cybermummy, not to mention feeding us croissants and looking after our bags! And have also given us a fair few packets of wipes, recently, which is very handy while BLW!


  1. My boys love nothing better than getting totally messy. I try and do painting with them outside, but get the plastic sheets out in the kitchen in the winter, move the table back and roll out the lining paper and tape it down with masking tape. I strip the boys down to their undies and let them get as messy as they like. I then carry them upstairs and hose them down in the bath! It's a lot of effort but they love it.

  2. Im a new follower and first of all I want to say I love your little girls names, Eleanor and Rosemary, so cute, girly and will never go out of fashion! I did a mix of purees and babyled feeding when feeding my son freddie, and he definately loved the finger food part bit the most! Ill definately consider going full babyled next time (freddie is my first). :)xx

  3. Whoa! Very messy indeed. I kind of chuckled too at gluing only twice a year (because I understand why from my time teaching why you steer clear).

  4. We do messy play. I just cover the table with newspaper and let them go for it. The washable paints and glues actually clean up really easily.

    As for food mess, well that is what dogs are for! Honestly I don;t know how people with babies manage without a dog to lick the floor clean!

  5. Great photos! :) I wasnt a fan of messy play (I think it was the thought of cleaning up afterwards!)until we had a painting session at our local babygroup. Oli was so happy to be running around wild with a paintbrush! I'm yet to attempt something similar at home!

  6. I know that kids would always be kids, and that part of the fun of being so young is to be allowed to indulge in messy play every once so often. However, my uptight side of my mommy nature is having a great deal of difficulty living with this that just one Saturday of messy play with my kids was enough to almost give me an on-the-spot anxiety attack lol!

  7. Many moms dream of working from home. But once they have the chance to do so, many of those moms wonder what in the world they have gotten themselves into! Working from home is not easy. In fact, many moms find that working from home is more difficult than getting in the car and going to work somewhere else every day.

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