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  1. Having a treat for myself these days is a rarity. I am currently in the throws of that newborn haze and am so sleep-deprived that sugar has become my go-to food source on an hourly basis! So, when Lisa from Petite Pops asked me to review her cake pops there was no way I could refuse. 

    Lisa began her new venture after baking cake pops for her daughter's 18th birthday in 2016. The cakes went down a treat– all 100 of them– and before she knew it, her baking skills were in big demand. She soon came to realise that a business could be born out of this and so just a few short months later Petite Pops was created. 

    All of her cakes are lovingly made in her own home and are a delicious treat of vanilla, lemon or chocolate sponge coated in melted chocolate. Her designs vary because she will happily take your own ideas and create a custom made cake pop just for you and your special event. She often caters for baby showers, parties, weddings and hen dos. They also make a great gift to say thank you and with prices varying from £1.80-£2.00 a pop they are an affordable, sweet gesture. 

    Upon ordering my cake pops, Lisa had them made and sent out very quickly. Her customer service was brilliant, she messaged me to ensure I had received my parcel and when I said it hadn't yet arrived, she double checked my address and asked me to message her as soon as they turned up. Sure enough, they arrived the next day (just Royal Mail being a bit slow) in a little white box which immediately had my son excited! I didn't choose my design, instead, I left this up to Lisa to decide upon which made it all that little more exciting. I wasn't disappointed... inside were 6 stunning white and red cake pops with a Valentine's Day theme.

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    They look far to good to eat!

    The detail that has gone into each pop is clearly very intricate work and looking through her website her other designs are no exception. I felt very special receiving these, it was a lovely pick me up after putting little people first and ignoring my own needs for the last few months. After staring lovingly at them for a while (it took a lot to bring myself to ruin them!) I decided to try one... as did my four-year-old who was never going to stop pestering me! The sponge cake itself was lovely and soft in texture with a delicious vanilla taste. The chocolate coating was really moreish and complemented the sponge well. I really liked the fact they were on a stick because my son found it easy to hold and eat without making a mess, as he usually does with a normal cake. I can see why these would be a big hit at a children's party rather than a full birthday cake – fewer crumbs, less mess and easy to pop into a party bag.

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    Sure enough, one wasn't enough for either of us and we enjoyed another each, saving some for my husband, of course! 

    It's not often I say a cake is beautiful but these truly are and would make such a special Valentine's gift for your loved one... hint, hint, hubby. 

    I will definitely be looking to use Petite Pops for any future parties or events. 

    Em xx 

    If you would like to find out more about Petite Pops and all that Lisa can offer you can do so over on her website or you can follow her on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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    About the Author: 

    Emma Reed is a Parenting and Lifestyle Blogger who began her writing journey when she self-published her book 'Your Teething Baby, from one parent to another' in February 2016. As well as writing for herself, Emma also provides freelance writing services to those who need to provide articles on their own website but may not have the time to do this themselves.

    You can read Emma's blogs over on her website or follow her on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Linkedin. You can purchase her book either as a paperback or kindle edition over on Amazon.

     

     

  2. 7 things you didn’t know about Early Years Training Network 

    18664272_1905152829707604_1796923756408371470_nSo, writing a blog sounds so easy, but I have found that its actually quite hard! Early Years Training Network is very close to my heart and I almost feel like I am sharing my personal journal with the audience, bearing my soul. I am however, going to take a deep breath and do it anyway……. 

    Early Years Training Network is run solely by me….Stacy Mann. I am a consultant and trainer for all things Early Years and the company was started so that I could also do all things Early Years with my two cherubs too. I began working in the Early Years Sector when I was 16 and soon came to realise that my first dream of being a teacher was going to be a long journey and to be honest, I definitely took the long route to get here. I do not regret one step of the journey though, because dropping out of Uni meant that along the way I gained invaluable experience of working in settings, of managing teams and working towards goals. I strongly believe that the universe has a plan and I have patiently sat back allowing that to unfold. So here I am, with my own business after gaining so much knowledge along the way too. 

    I could talk all day about my passion for improving standards in Early Years and developing staff teams to reach their full potential but instead, I thought I’d compile a list of things you may not know about Early Years Training Network. 

    1. The Training is bespoke. I write training courses to best suit the team I am working with, so if I have a group of childminders, a children’s centre, volunteers, parents or teachers, the training is tailor made to ensure they get the best they can out of it. This helps for them to deeply reflect and move forward in their practice. 

    2. I am the Head Trainer too. As I said I run the whole business myself. Currently I do all the training and consultancy visits too, this is so that I can be consistent and because I am so passionate, I need to know that this comes through in the training. The plans for this business mean that this may change but the recruitment process will be intense as shared vision is key for me. 

    3. My specialist subject is Promoting Positive Behaviour. I love dissecting a puzzle when it comes to behaviour. There is always a reason for behaviour and I aim to find it. This has seen me observing children and giving ideas on how to move forward. I am also training to be a relax kids coach as this will heavily compliment this part of my work. 

    4. My groups vary in size. I have delivered training on a one to one basis and with groups up to 80. 

    5. My babies benefit from what I do. Its true! I do a day of training discussing how important personal, social and emotional development is, attachment, quality interactions etc and I come home a try my best to practice what I preach. They also love doing relax kids stuff and learning how to self-regulate. 

    6. I am working towards Advanced Teacher Status. My continuous professional development doesn’t stop either. I always plan in conferences and training throughout the year to keep me topped up to be the best for my delegates. I am half way through my Advanced Teacher Status which will give me recognition of being an expert teacher in my field. 

    7. I LOVE MY JOB. Other than being a mommy and a wife, which I would choose over anything, I love working and inspiring best practice when working with children. Every group is different, every course develops new things, every moment means I am making a difference to a child’s life. I stepped into the Early Years Sector to make a difference, I did this at first as a keyworker 

    to a few children and now I do this on a larger scale…influencing those keyworkers to make a difference too. 

    My mantra for my work and for my company is ‘I am the star in my own movie, I am also the writer and director. I create wonderful roles for myself in my work environment’ Louise Hays. Yes I do! Early Years Training Network will continue to grow and there are so many plans for the future…..always with the child at the centre.

    Visit our website here