Books to inspire stronger boys

I am super happy to buy all those inspiring books for girls from Fantastically Great Women who Changed the World to Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls to read with my 7 years old daughter.

However, I felt that my 9 years old boy also needs support and inspiration as I can not assume he is going to do great things just because he is a boy.

So after spending a bit of time of reseach, here are my top four choices:

1) Stories for boys who dare to be different - inspirational stories about the men who have done something amazing in a range of fields.

2) Way of the Warrior Kid - the book is written by a former US Navy Seal. I may not agree with everything, but I still found the book engaging for my boy to get an understanding what it means to be a warrior with discipline and dedication.

3) You Are Awesome: Find Your Confidence and Dare to be Brilliant at (Almost) Anything - a concept of not being afraid to take risks and not to be scared of the failurs as it is a necessary part of getting to success. 

4) Politics for Beginners - one may be surprise by this suggestions, but both my daughter and son found this book very inspiring as they teach about voicing your opinions, debating and standing for what one believes. 

you are awesomme.jpg

Let me know if there are other books you found for your boys that you would like to share.

Rejecting middle age - a guest blog from 33 shake, natural endurance nutrition (

Rejecting middle age: hit peak fitness at any age with the right mindset

Middle age comes with a bundle of seriously crappy stereotypes. We're supposed to become slower, fatter, creakier, sicker, more easily injured, less easily repaired, and worse, we're expected to do it all while listening to Radio Four and wearing comfortable slacks. Well scr*w that, because as far as we're concerned, that's not middle age, it's a slow death. Instead we're absolutely rejecting middle age, and laying out how you can do exactly the same.

So if you're the sort of person who wants to keep scaling new physical and mental peaks for the next 30 years and far beyond let's get to it. We've got some serious living to do. 

1 Language: what you say matters, big time

Over 30 with a sore back, knee, calf, etc? Before you know it a mate asks you about the injury in question and you quip back "ha, I must just be getting old"or something similar. 

You think you're joking, but unfortunately this joke's on you because your brain will start believing what you say. Once you start attributing your injuries and ailments to age, the slippery slope begins. 


Examine your injuries, they aren't caused by age. They're caused by under-use

After all, if age is the cause and getting older is unavoidable then your injury or ailment is also unavoidable. Hence you might as well not bother putting all that hard work to fix it and get back to your former performance level or above, because that too is impossible. 

Before you know it you're eyeing ads for walk-in baths, comfort slippers and ballroom dance evenings.

Whenever you catch yourself putting any injury down to old age, delete the thought and put it down to the real cause which is...

2 Too much sitting, not enough moving

Over the age of 30 is where the modern evils of too much sitting down, too many laptops, tablets and smartphones, and not enough good old-fashioned movement and exertion start kicking in. 

We're not about to say you should burn all of your chairs and install treadmill desks in your office (although that would be cool) because we realise that's not practical for most people. The point is, the less you use your body, the less it will work and the more likely it will then be to misfire when asked to perform. 

Use those joints, bust a move, and stick one in the eye for everyone who says older means slower

Runners, cyclists and triathletes can be among the worst hit here as full-on jobs can keep us as sedentary as anyone else, while our training demands push hard on joints, tendons, muscles and ranges of motion that haven't been well used in a long time. 

At the same time, the very muscles which take up the slack under pressure around these key areas are unfortunately also the very same muscles most weakened by sitting. 

The result? A high injury rate (yearly injury rates among runners for example are between 37 and 56%) with many injuries too readily blamed on age. 

Instead, these injuries are in fact a time-traveling window into the future.

3 You what? Injuries showing us the future - have you totally lost the plot?

Absolutely not, and nor have we taken up with hokey UK newspaper stargazer Mystic Meg because here's the thing: the injury that stops you cycling, running or swimming hard today, if left untreated, is the same injury that will stop you walking to the shops in 25 years time. 

Take a common running injury for example like Achilles tendonitis

Hurts like heck when you run, but rest it for a bit and there's no pain at all when you're walking. If you hadn't run, you'd never even know there was a problem. 

Which is why your doctor will advise you to stop running in a case like this. 

Unfortunately, your doctor is a moron. 

Because if you don't fix that Achilles after your running's helpful early warning and instead reduce or stop training, then the same things that caused it to flare up while running (lower back tightness, excess quad dominance when running, weak hamstrings and glutes, tight hip flexors) won't get fixed either. 

And eventually, they'll start causing problems when you walk. 

At which point your doctor will recommend a walking frame, allowing the weakened and overtight muscle chain causing the problem to get still weaker and tighter. 

Like we said, your doctor's a moron. 

Take the early warning signs your training injuries uncover, work those injuries back to full health with honest graft and stick a bullseye on your next PB (PR). 

4 Where's your finish line?

In any race you've entered, there's always a finish line and the clever thing about finish lines is they give you a clear target to aim for. 

Whether it's an Olympic triathlon, a 200-mile single-stage ultramarathon (yes, these are actually a thing), a 50-mile Sportive or a mountain summit, you know where your finish line is. 

And the weird thing about known finish lines is they also affect your energy and strength. 

Run a 50-miler and you won't even think about feeling tired until 30 miles or more. Yet even with the same fitness levels, if you go and run a five-miler we can bet you'll be feeling a bit tired at just four miles all because you're nearing the finish.

The same happens with the way we think about age, and our approach here can change everything. 

Currently, average life expectancy in the UK is 79 for men and 83 for women. Which makes it deceptively easy to think of popping your clogs around about 80 as pretty bloody normal. 

Follow that train of thought and at 40 you're halfway (and onto the downward slope), at 50 you're beyond middle age, and at 60, heck better start measuring up that coffin! 

But 80's only an average finish line. In other statistics news, the number of people living over 100 is soaring

So continuing with our earlier finish line analogy here, if we assume 100 is our end game, not 80, suddenly 40 is positively youthful, 50 is only just halfway to the end while 60 is still happily middle-aged. 

Where you put your finish line makes all the difference. 

Personally at 33Shake we're all putting our finish lines at 120, taking inspiration from the legendary Japanese doctor Shigeaki Hinohara who, at 104 in 2016 set himself a target of being at the Tokyo Olympics in 2020, spectating, not competing in case you were wondering - even positive thinking has its limits. 

He died at 105 before getting there, proving these goals are only that (after all, in life as in in races DNFs are inevitable), but without keeping his strong future goals you can bet he'd not have had the vigorous life he did. 


"And next week I'm running across Paraguay to celebrate turning 137" If you want to reject middle age, choose your finish line and make it ambitious, don't let averages drag you down

5 Conclusion

Parting words here go to the most excellent Charles Eugster, octogenarian bodybuilder and 90-year old sprint champion who memorably said "You can rebuild your body at any age, you can learn something new at any age, you can start a new life at any age"

Age and particularly performance, are all in the mind and there for the taking as long as we are alive and moving.

Where will you set your goalposts?


A day in Florence with children

Before returning from Easter break from Italy, I took my 7 years old for a day in Florence. What a treat for both of us.  It is a place one can spend there a week exploring but even a brief visit can be fascinating if you plan it properly. So, in case you are planning a visit any time soon with your kids, here are some tips to make you journey both fun and educational.

View from Uffizi

I love the city and I really wanted to explain to my daughter what Renaissance is about and how it started and also introduce her to an incredible range of people who worked and lived in Florence and changed our lives forever.

I suggest to start with Palazzo Vecchio (old palace) and Piazza della Signoria (square on the nobility) as it is an open-air museum on its own and give the feel how beautiful the city is. The piazza has a copy of one of the most beautiful statues, carved by Michelangelo – David (the original is displayed in the museum).


To make kids enjoy Palazzo Vecchio and Piazza della Signoria more, here are some games:

1)      The tower on top of Palazzo Vecchio (Torre di Arnolfo) is the tallest tower in city and there is a real prison cell inside it. Near the main entrance to the palazzo, there is a face carved in the wall on the right. Can you spot it? The legend goes that Michelangelo carved this face without watching.

2)      Walk around the statue of David and look carefully at the back of his head. What can you see? Some say there is a hidden face that is an image of the artist who carved it.

3)      Florence sounds a bit like a flower. That is why Lily was chosen as a symbol of the city. Can you spot a lion with the shield that has the symbol of the city?

Next stop is Palazzo degli Uffizi which is next to the Piazza della Signoria and is my favourite art museum in the world. The key is to buy tickets online to avoid the queue.  A little thing to check out before you enter is to find a statue with a lizard at the bottom as it is of Amerigo Vespucci, an explorer from Florence who gave name to a new continent America.

As the gallery is enormous, I focused only on the key artists and painting not to overwhelm children.  Here are my favourites that I had a little story to tell to my daughter to make it more fun:

1)      We started with Medieval art (Sala or Room 1 ) to explain to my girl what the typical art of that period was. Flat images, focus on symbolism rather then realism (background of gold rather than true landscape, no perspective) and themes are all religious. We could play a game and tell is the painting is Medieval or Renaissance.

2)   When you move on, you start notice the new trends, such as paintings are a bit more 3D, gradually backround and proportion are getting closer to realistic and perspective is used more and more. Giotto’s Madonna in Sala 2 is a good example.


3)      Botticelli’s Birth of Venue and The Springs are two of our favourites. The Spring has a nice story to tell as the god of wind (Zephyrus) is kidnaping Spring (who spits flowers from her mouth and trying to hold on to Flora in a beautiful dress), Mercury is using his sword to stop the clouds as the spring is coming, Graces and dancing and Venus stands further away (while the face is the same as Venue from The Birth of Venus).

Spring by Botticello

4)      We had a look at Michelangelo and Rafael (you can pick your favourites), and Caravaggio. You can play a little game with kids looking Bacchus and find an artists self-portrait in the wine surface of the carafe).

5) Da Vinci room is the one worth a special stop. There is also a movie display about the restaration of Adoration of Maggi to reveal the amount of work put to preserve the art;


Don’t miss the bookstore before leaving the museum. A lot of children books are in English and our picks were: Florence for Kids, a city guide with Pimpa (we used a lot of tips to explore the city), a version of Dante's Divine Comedy suitable for children, Who was Leonardo da Vinci (simple but comprehensive story of Leonardo life which gives interesting details of the life during the Renesance).

Books to buy

After a long walk in the museum, we needed a nice break for the ice-creams. Locals recommended Perche No which is a short walk from the museum and we just loved it. lavanda, mint, crème brule as well as all usual gelato’s flavours were o incredible quality.

The next stop (which is a walking distance) is Duomo or the cathedral of Santa Maria el Fiore made out of white, pink and green marble is one of my favourite in Italy.

The gigantic Cupola Rossa (red dome) on top of it was the first dome to be build of this shape and it was in inspiration to various famous landmark. Many years ago the golden ball on top of the dome was struck by a lightening and it fell off. Can you find a white circle on the ground behind cathedral that marks the spot where the huge ball fell.

If you check the Battistero (the baptistery) just opposite the Dome’s entrance, it has Porta del Paradiso which some argue has started Renaissance with its panels with 3D statues and perspective.


For a meal, we went to Food Market (Mercato Central) as it is a great choice of food and easy with the kids. My favourite is truffle counter (for parents) and Chianina burgers (for kids). Chianina is a beef from the local region.

Food Market in Florence

As we have been at the city only one day, we missed some fun places like Ponte Vechhio (with a bronze boar that everybody touches his snout for good luck) or countless beautiful gardens. But we can not wait to go back next year again and explore more.

We have not stayed overnight, but local friends say that Gallary Hotel Art and Portrait Firenze hotels have terraces with amazing view on the whole city.

Let us know if you go to Florence with kids and have more fun activities to share.

Charles I's art collection: how to see it with your kids

Royal Academy of Art runs an amazing exhibition until April 15 of Charles I’s art collection.  Firstly, the exhibition is incredible because the beautiful pieces of art (Italian and Northern Renaissance, Venetians and of cause works of Anthony van Dyke) have been seen together last time during the year the King was executed. But also, the exhibition offers a great opportunity to review such an important period of British history when the country went through the Civil War, had the parliament dismissed and later got its own King executed.

Being not English, I knew little about the period but as I love art I decided to learn more and try to teach my 7 and 9 year old.  I knew to make the trip fun I have to do a bit of homework.

Charles I
Charles I.png

First, I watched a great documentary Charles I’s Treasures Reunited on BBC iPlayer that talks about the art on display as well as the history behind. I love it myself and it gave few stories to tell the kids when I take them around he exhibition to make it fun.

Then, I put together a little quiz for them to fill in during the exhibition (download here). To boost an incentive, every point was 20p worth so if they get all right answers, they have some money to spend in the museum shop afterwards.

The questions look hard but they kids loved it. They learned new words, remembered all the answers and were very happy to educated their daddy during the dinner.

I hope you will get a chance to go and see the exhibition during the next two weeks with your little ones before it closes and let me know about your experience.

£10 gift voucher to spend at 3 House Club kids friendly cafe

For the next week we would like to ask all the parents and nannies to take the cutest photo of your little one during a class at 3 House Club and post either on Facebook or Instagram, checking in or tagging 3 House Club.

If you photo gets the most likes, you will get £10 gift card to spend at our 3 House Club cafe.

The winner will be announced on March 30. 


Good luck and have fun!

Local family friendly events for the next few weeks.

As the weather is getting better and a school break is coming up, here are some local things you may enjoy doing with your kids as well as few suggestions if you want to travel:

Spring Festival for Persian New Year - Norouz Bazaar in St John's Wood

March 10-11, Saturday & Sunday, 11:00 to 17:00

It’s the countdown to a colourful 28th annual a charity Norouz Bazaar at Danubius Hotel, opposite Lord’s Cricket Ground, St Johns Wood. A great place to join on #MothersDay to savour the flavour of world’s most famous Spring Festival! #PersianNewYear 

Family friendly free event in St Jhon's Wood

Easter Fayre, St. John's Wood.

March 17-18, Saturday and Sunday, 11:00-18:00

Come and join St. John's Hospice at the annual Easter Fayre  at St John’s Wood Church Gardens, Wellington Road (entrance), NW8 7PF.

Children can enjoy new and classic fairground rides, take donkey rides in the park and join in with our great big Easter Egg Hunt! There will be various stalls, including food.


a bit further away from St John's Wood...


Family Day: Chamber Challenge

March 24, Saturday, 10:30-15:30 at Wigmore Hall

Interactive workshop day for families with children aged 5 plus with Diphonon Duo (viola and accordion), on a marvellous music-making adventure.


My First Ballet: Swan Lake at Peacock Theatre

29 March - 7 April at Peacock Theatre.

Family friendly - age guidance is 3+ . All ages will be admitted and children 2 years old and above will need a ticket. Family ticket: 4 tickets for £65, available on tickets that are usually £20 each. Family ticket must include at least 2 children.

Ballet for children

and event further away...

Visit Roald Dahl Musium as a different day out with your children...

The Roald Dahl Museum is a great little family Museum, situated in Great Missenden, the Buckinghamshire village where Roald Dahl lived and wrote for 36 years.

The Museum, aimed at 6 to 12 year olds, features three hands-on galleries and is home to the Roald Dahl archive. Plan to join museum's story-telling or activities to enjoy the visit more.

Enjoy the spring!

Tips on how to organise your wardrobe

As the spring is coming up, we all feel inspired to clear out clutter at our home and organise our wardrobes. I have done it with the Autumn/Winter clothes and now I am getting ready for Spring/Summer.

Here are some tips I am happy to share and I hope you found them useful:

1) Don't try to tackle everything in one go. Focus on one season at a time;

2) Take everything out for the season and sort into four piles: keep/keep but need to fix/give away/not sure. I found I needed two things: a mirror that showed my back (or a friend who can take photos from your back), and a professional eye to see objectively what fits well for my figure today and is not completely outdated. It can be a personal stylist (the best £60-100 you spend for your wardrobe) or a reliable friend.

3) Do not be tempted to put many things in "not sure" pile and if you do - give yourself a deadline (if you do not wear it once over the next month, you give it away). Apart of what you keep,  piles go into three large boxes you commit to deal with over a fixed period of time. How to know what to get rid off - if you have not worn it last year season, you are not likely to wear it this year.

3) Before putting back into the wardrobe what you decided to keep: (a) make a list of combination of clothes to wear together (one bottom piece should have at least three different tops to combine with), (b) make sure everything is visible and easy to reach (you will not remember the clothes you do not see).

4) Decide on 3-4 items you can add to your wardrobe this season to refresh the look. Research online before you go shopping to avoid compulsive buying. What you buy should be easy to combine with what you have and you should have couple of options for each piece.

I am not good to follow the fashion trends to know what are the staple items for Spring/Summer,  but that is why I will be joining Natasha Vinnikova to listen to her take on Spring/Summer trends after the London fashion week on colours, patterns and fabric.

I hope to see many of you on March 16 at 11:30.

Personal Stylist

Seven tips for your child's perfect birthday party

Here is a simple checklist to make sure everything goes well for your son/daughter's birthday party:

1. List of invited guests. I always find it useful to run a list of invited kids to track replies, goodie bags, etc. Make it clear in your invitation, if siblings are welcome or you prefer to limit the number of guests (if your party’s venue has constraints, guests would understand as soon as you put it politely). I always ask in the invitation to confirm if a guest is coming with a little brother or sister so I have plenty of goodie bags and don’t have to run last minute to find a spare chair. So your option is either to use

  • Excel - free but not automated

  • Paperless Post - very easy to use but not a free service

  • Kindergifts - a new free online party invitation service, which allows you not only to invite guests but also (a) invite guests to contribute towards one meaningful gift your child chooses; and (b) support a charity of your family's choice.

2. Theme for the party & decorations:  Your child probably will tell you exactly what s/he would love the party to be about.  However, in case you need some inspiration, have a look at the parties we run at the club over the last few years, here. We have much more inspiration on our Facebook page too. 

Trolls' Birthday Party at 3 House Club

Check list for what to order as a party decoration:

  • foil balloons (number for age and a character) and balloon weights;

  • latex balloons and ribbons to match,

  • plates (main and cake), spoons (cake) & forks (if hot food), cups, napkins, straws;

  • table confetti and table cover;

  • scene setters, cut-outs, banners (you can do personalised);

  • garlands and hanging decorations;

  • helium.

3. Entertainment: there is a wide range available in London, but here are more general suggestions by age:

  • 1-2 yrs old: you easily can keep your guests happy with some toys, music and some soft play. If you want to hire some entertainment, I found that for this age live music with rhymes or a puppet show is a good option;

  • 3-4 yrs old:  music and rhymes still work well with some simple games and story improvisation; you can also try live farm animals show or art/craft activities;

  • 5-6 yrs old: games, magician, live animals (predators or farm), sport activities, cooking or cupcake decoration, cinema, t-shirt print making, science party;

  • 7-9 yrs old:  as above plus make up & dressing up with fashion show, military/spy operation/training, guided tours to stadiums, museums (with some activities afterwards), bus party, laser tags, go karting race.

Extra touch: bouncy castle, facepainter, balloon makers, photographer, mascot visits for special guests (i.e. Peppa Pig).

4. Food for kids and adults: We always suggest to go for simple food kids love. Pizza or pasta, some fruit and vegetable, apple juice and water are easy and always work.  I always believe it is nice touch to offer some food and drinks for adults. We usually go for some tea/coffees with pastries for a morning party, prosecco/wine/beer with some finger food for the afternoon. 

5. Cake: The main choice usually is among 3D cake, a flat cake (you can have an edible photo) or cupcakes. Good bakeries can make you a cake from a photo you find on the internet for your theme.  We are using few places if you need an advice – let us know (

6. Goodie bags. We always go for a nice book (on the party theme), a small toy and one sweet for older children.  Lollies or Haribo will do or you can do for a nicer treats thematic based (e.g. check Waitrose or M&S for Frozen or Peppa chocolate lollies).

7. Venue: The venue choice depends on your entertainment, number of guests,  parking, public transport access as well as if you want all to be organised for you or your prefer to do it yourself.

We will be happy for your to give us a call if you have any questions and there are more FAQ about our parties here.   

We love parties and we always try our best for the parents and children to have the most stress-free and fun memorable experience at 3 House Club. It is a party afterall!

Online Safety Tips: few things you may find useful

Here some useful tips how to keep your child safe online:

Toddlers and Pre-School

The main risk for this age is for toddler come across some inappropriate images while watching a cartoon on YouTube. So the first step is to set up a safety mode on your YouTube page (see a guiding video here). You can also choose YouTube Kids as a safer platform to watch videos and Swiggle and Kids-Search as an alternative for Google when your little one starts searching online. If you are letting your kids to use Google search, you can exclude inappropriate search results by setting the Safe Search Lock (see video how to do it here).

School children

1) Educate your child: I believe this is the most important step as you can not control all devices you child would be able to access (think about playdates). A great source for you as a parent to read what to discuss with your child is Think You Know . The site gives advice for parents and children from 5 to 14+.

2) Know what your child is doing on the internet including games, apps and websites. The risk to consider if the app/game/site is age appropriate, can kids chat online with strangers while playing the game, can app allow anonymous chats, can messages self-destroy, can a child GEO locations be tracked. I would suggest Family Sharing setting for your devices, so what your child downloads on his/her iPad comes to your phone and you can see and just talk with your child that any new games, sites usage should be agreed with you.  As sometimes kids know apps that we do not, you can educate yourself about the games and apps here.

3) Set the rules: it is important to set clear boundaries and rules for your child online behaviour. Such as what information not to disclose, what sites and apps are not allowed, what pictures not to share. If you have a real rebellion and you want more control over your child online behavior, there are some apps that help you to limit Internet usage of your children such Our Pack or Screen Limit. There is also an app ReplyASAP to block a mobile phone of your child (or maybe a husband) until she/he responds to your message.

4) If you do not have a trustful relationship with your child, you may educate yourself on secret folders that older children may download to hide files that they do not want you to see. Some examples are below:


If something is bothering you or your child, make a screenshot of any message (as they can be self-destroyed in some case) and there is a website Child Exploitation and Online Protection command where you can report your concerns.

We hope you find it useful, and do let us know if there other useful tools you can suggest to the parents or if you have any questions.

List of inspiring movies to watch with your children (above 7 yrs old)

If you are planning some time off the next week and chill-out with your kids, here is a list of (mainly sport inspired) movies based on true stories you can watch together:

1) Cool Runnings (especially with the Winder Olympics around the corner);
2) Miracle;
3) Invincible;
4) Glory Road;
5) The Rookie;
6) Remember the titans;
7) The greatest game ever played;
8) Secretariat; and my personal favourite

9) Queen of Katwe.

In case you have younger kids and you need a bit of help to look after them, do remember we have a creche service next week either from 9:30 to 1:30 pm or 1:30pm till 5:30pm. See details here

Chance to win two tickets for Tchaikovsky & Marvellous Kingdom show

Would you like to win 2 tickets for to enjoy a classical music show with your baby or toddler this Sunday 11 Feb 12pm show from Aurora Orchestra of Tchaikovsky & Marvellous Kingdom

Choose a social media of your preference (Instrgam or Facebook) and enter the competition (winner is selected on Thu at 12:00):

1) follow 3 House Club and AuroraOrchestra 
2) Like the post (here for Facebook or Instagram) and tag two friends who maybe interested in the show.

Good luck!

Far, Far Away: Tchaikovsky and the Marvellous Kingdom
Half-term shows 10-11 & 17-18 February, various times - Kings Place

Join Aurora Orchestra musicians on a glittering adventure through the Marvellous Kingdom: meet singing ducks, dancing shoes, and soaring space rockets. This immersive, multi-sensory show weaves together new chamber arrangements of Tchaikovsky’s enchanting music with an original story from Aurora Writer-in-Residence Kate Wakeling. Young audiences (aged 0-4) and their families are invited to listen, sing, dance, and enter a magical world of music, discovery, and play.

Tchaikovsky and the Marvellous Kingdon.jpg

Tips for using essential oils during the pregnancy

I have met Pamela few months ago, and as I am always looking for a natural way to treat health issues, she was a blessing. I bought from her the oil-mix for muscle pain as well as pine cembro oil for the defuser to help with running nose for my kids and it made such a difference. 

Bellow are some tips Pamela shares for aromatherapy during the pregnancy:

I recommend the lipid extract of plants, ( solar macerations) of Lavender or Camomille and Rose during the first three months.

The massage oil I principally use contains Petit grain bigaradier, Lavande officinal with the solar maceration of Rose Centifolia.

In case of infections such as colds the essential oil of Ravinsara may be used on advise of a qualified aromatherapist.

* Great care must be taken as to the quality of essential oils used.

There are numerous things a pregnant woman can do to help herself and her unborn child, such as eating well and avoiding alcohol, cigarettes and drugs of any kind. A pregnant mothers' mental attitude to her pregnancy is very important. All the baby's organs are being formed in the first few months, and whatever the mother feels, thinks and does will have an effect on it.

Diet is very important, the future mother has a responsibility to her baby to eat well during her pregnancy, the baby will benefit greatly from healthy natural foods. It is wise to eat plenty of vegetables, lightly steamed or raw and organic where possible, and to have a good intake of protein.

Morning sickness can be trying, though it doesn't usually last long. Eating little and often and avoiding rich, heavy or fried foods, eating slowly and chewing well. Drinking herbal infusion of Camomille can have a soothing effect in the stomach.

Its is important to get plenty of rest during pregnancy. I recommend at least one hour's total rest each day, feet up, and doing nothing more taxing than listening to some music or reading.

Aromatherapy Treatment

The aromatherapy massage treatment is done in two stages. Stage one is for when she is just pregnant and can still lie on her abdomen. Stage two is for when she can no longer lie on her abdomen; at this time, she sits up in the massage couch, sideways, with her feet resting on a stool, a pillow on her lap in which to rest her arms and a towel around her chest and legs to keep warm.

First the neck and back are massaged, these are often the seat of much tension. I use the solar maceration of Lavender or Camomille during the first three months, adding essential oils later as the foetus is more formed. The client then lies on her back, propped up by pillows under her head and legs, or however she feels most comfortable, and is given a facial, using a preparation according to the quality of her skin. I then massage the solar plexus, abdomen and legs and she rests of ten minutes.

Often women arrive feeling a little tired or nervous; the abdomen is often tight and the baby tends to move about a lot.

After the treatment it is amazing how often she feels that the baby has settled down and how wonderfully relaxed her abdomen feels.

A weekly treatment is best, but that will obviously depend on the time available to the individual mother. Fortnightly or monthly treatment still provides excellent care.

What does the treatment do?

First of all it is relaxing and helps to stop the build up of tension, especially in the neck and shoulders and in the later stages of pregnancy the lower back, which is sometimes affected by the extra weight of the baby.

It is uplifting and improves the flow of energy and minimises fatigue, which is usual during the first three months and again towards the end of pregnancy.

It is revitalising. It improves skin tone, helping to reduce small imperfections.

It improves circulation. Veins tend to become more apparent during pregnancy, there is a greater tendency to varicose veins, thread veins and haemorrhoids, therefore this is particularly important.

It stimulates lymphatic drainage and the elimination of toxic wastes from the system. This is important during pregnancy because of the greater tendency to fluid retention, which is often visible as swelling of the ankles and feet.

It tones muscles. This combats aches and pains caused by distended ligaments, and alleviates any tendency to cramp, which can occur towards the fifth month.

It maintains the skin's suppleness and elasticity; the therapeutic effect of the essential oils and vegetable oils coupled with the massage induces physical and mental relaxation.

It is psychologically supportive for the mother.

It prepares for child birth. Regular treatments help to keep the body in harmony.


Getting back to the job market

For those of us who took time to stay at home after having a child, it may be a bit intimidating to get back to the job market. One of the way to ease the way is to get involved with local small businesses. 

A lot of parents setting up their own businesses after having children to get more flexibility and those businesses are always looking for extra help from professionals.

It may be a great opportunity for you to sharpen your business thinking and even add something to your CV if you volunteer for any advisory role within a start-up.

How to spot these opportunities? Check local mum Facebook groups if any such businesses are looking for volunteers to help in any part of their business, ranging from social media and marketing support to business plan or strategy review. You can also start meeting business owners who run user groups as the first step to meet start-ups.

3 House Club is hosting such an opportunity run by Kindergifts this Thursday, Februar 1,  from 7 to 9 pm.  The meeting is a user group set up and the founders are looking for ideas and reviews for their business.

Be open minded and generous with your skills and time, and great opportunities may come. 


Masterclasses for gifted children with Tomorrow Achievers at 3 House Club

We are proud to start collaboration with Tomorrow's Achievers, an organisation that provides specialist masterclasses for nearly 1,000 gifted children across the country every year.


The courses cover a wealth of topics – including science, technology, maths, philosophy, literature and the arts – in ways which engage, stretch and challenge the most able students.

Below is the list of courses we will be hosting at 3 House Club, St John's Wood during November and December.

We offer £5 off the tickets for our clients and members but discounted tickets are limited only for two places per masterclass. If the tickets on our site is sold out, you would be able to buy full-price tickets directly at tomorrow's achievers' site


Here is the list of the courses as well as link to buy the tickets:

November 5,  Sunday, 10;00 -15:00

Wonderland (literacy, history, creative thinking and maths)

Age: Year 1-3 (5-8 yrs old)

November 5, Sunday, 10:00 - 16:00

It’s Maths, but not what you’re used to!

Age: Year 3-5 (7-10 yrs old)

These maths workshops are for children who are already excited about mathematics and want to see, and do, more than they have the opportunity to do in school. The focus is on logical reasoning, "thinking like a mathematician" and problem solving, together with mathematical acceleration. We will get together and carry out exploration of many topics from algebra, geometry, number theory, probability and number logic plus other areas of the curriculum.

The contests are enjoyable, spurring interest in mathematics and offering challenging problems of a different nature than those you may encounter in a math class.

You will develop your number skills and manipulation, and your application of the functions of maths, through solving many exciting challenges, maths games and puzzles.

Join us and develop your maths skills confidence and understanding and learn new techniques, without a textbook in sight.

Led by Philip Callaghan-Wright

November 5,  Sunday, 10:00 -15:00

Fire in the Soul! (art of Painting with Matisse, Miro, Picasso, Leger and Kandinsky)

Age: Year 2-6 (6-11 yrs old)

Fire in the Soul!

Kandinsky: “Each colour lives by its mysterious life (…) - to create an artwork is to create the world.” Painting with Matisse, Miro, Picasso, Leger and Kandinsky you will gain an insight into their techniques, use of shape, colour and composition; as well as the ideas behind the artworks. Inspired by their thoughts and works – which according to Miro “must be conceived with fire in the soul but executed with clinical coolness” - you will create your own colourful portfolio of masterpieces and ideas!

Led by Tania Gil Horta

December 3, Sunday, 10:00 – 14:30

Mathematical Minions

Age: Year 1-3 (5-8 yrs old)

Can one small mathematical Minion solve a huge problem? Have you heard of strength in numbers, the power of numbers and taking away problems? 

The little Minions need your help. Their beautiful land by the sea has been attacked by the Giant Gnomes of Gnaw.  Gnomes are mean and green and they double in size every day - and they want Minion land for themselves.  Bring your maths head and join the Minions.  Learn about the power of numbers and be strong together.  Begone Gnomes! 

(This class employs a creative approach to maths. Children will use creative thinking skills and logic to apply numerical concepts to story and model making.)

Led by Tracey Martin

December 3, Sunday, 10:00 – 15:30

The Egg Carrier Challenge (laws of physics)

Age: Year 3-5 (7-10 yrs old)

Have you ever considered how laws of physics impact on our daily lives?  Have you ever thought about the shapes we see around us in all the objects we use every day?  Why are some shapes seen more often than others?  Do some have different strengths?  What are forces?  And why must they be thought about when making a product?   What are the different types of motion that make some things move?

We will look at shapes to see which are strong or weak and look at some of the forces that have to be considered when making an object. Then, we will construct some things using different shapes and, by testing them to destruction, discover which shapes are the strongest.

Now to the challenge!  Working in teams, you will construct a simple cart or capsuleand compete with the other teams to see which one can safely carry an egg, without breaking it, over the greatest distance.   You might even be daring enough to launch a capsule into the air.  But remember you mustn't break the egg.  

When you get home, if your parents agree, you might have a competition with them or local friends to see who can safely carry an egg the furthest. 

Led by Philip Callaghan-Wright

December 3, Sunday, 10:00 – 15:00

Monsters and Surrealist Art

Age: Year 2-6 (6-11 yrs old)

In our increasingly globalised world, artists break away from tradition. They embark on explorational journeys of their own fragmented identity. On our own journey through the Tate, you will explore some of their most exciting works and try some of their ideas to create your own soulful sketches!

Led by Tania Gil Horta

December 10, Sunday, 10:00 – 15:00

Who's that in the Mirror!

Age: Year 1-3 (5-8 yrs old)

This will be a day for talking, reading, writing, making sculptures and drawings...all about YOU! Who are you really? What do you want to do with your time? What do you want to achieve in the future and what skills will you need to succeed?

December 10, Sunday, 10:00 – 15:30

Numbers Can Be Fun - Honest!

Age: Year 3-5 (7-10 yrs old)

A day of fun and games, challenges and puzzles, designed to build your skills, confidence and application when working with numbers and the important functions in maths. Learn to co-operate with others as well as work on your own to find the solutions, through a whole range of tasks, hands-on puzzles and challenges which will boost your mathematical skills.

Not a text book in sight! You will be amazed how new skills will develop which will make you an even better ‘maths practitioner’.

You will soon be able to design your own maths games and puzzles and challenge the rest of the group to solve them: 2D or 3D, it’s up to you. Challenge yourself to learn more about number, shape, time, dimension, even simple algebra. The sky’s the limit. Let the fun begin!

Led by Philip Callaghan-Wright

December 10, Sunday, 10:00 – 16:00

Who Am I? Art, Stories and Identity

Age: Year 2-6 (6-11 yrs old)

Surrealist artists took inspiration from dreams, the unconscious mind, and memories of childhood. We shall make artworks inspired by the Surrealists’ images and by drawing our own experiences and memories. We shall use elements of chance and randomness to create our own surrealist works in a variety of media.

Led by Tania Gil Horta

Our art teacher participates in the London project for children.

The installation was created during the Travel Unravelled summer program at Watermans Arts Center .

Ema project.jpg

It consists of a relational structure intended to generate a space for free creative flow. Paintings, drawings, monoprints, screenprints and poetic texts were added to the boat-like structure by the participants, either through workshops led by various artists or, freely, while visiting the gallery.
The artistic intention was to poetise the space, to generate a space for creation and poetical communication.
The concepts of the art workshops were created in collaboration with the theatre director and educator Francesca Camozzi and the construction of the installation and delivery of art activities, through the dedicated, invaluable contribution of the fine artist Simona Lupusor.
The boat-like shape of the site-specific structure makes reference to the environment of the gallery, situated on the bank of the river Thames and its surrounding docs and ships, some inhabited by the locals. The curvilinear space also refers to the waving surface of the water nearby. The poems later added to the boat by participants beautifully echo this metaphorical spatial experience.
The art piece was part of a series of various workshops that were part of the Watermans Travel Unravelled program
The art educational workshops that led to the creation of the boat-structure were the following:

-Printmaking –monoprints with various textures (inspired by surrealist imagery , children experimented with printmaking, and the results were vivid and fascinating)
-Making miniature boat sculptures (small assemblages suggesting the shape of the big structure they became part of)
-Creating original celestial globes inspired by instruments for navigation ( a concept created by the artist educator Francesca Camozzi; after researching old navigational instruments , maps of the sky and mythological storytelling about constellation, children created their own imaginary constellations and painted them on their model plaster globes)
-Screen-printing the boat-sculpture’s sails (workshops created by fine artist Nicole Line)
Most of the participants in the workshops were very young, with ages ranging from 4 to 16, but adults also collaborated and contributed to the art piece.

The project was coordinated by Caroline Jeyaratnam-Joyner, Head of Participative Arts Development of Watermans Arts Centre.

JOIN US TODAY WITH YOU KIDS at 15:15 for 3-4 yrs old and 16:15 for 5-8 yrs old