Lots of news this month, from summer hours to fundraising
ideas, so get a cup of tea and settle in for a good read!

It’s now official – the toy library is brilliant! Parenting
website NetMums has awarded us a gold star rating, as the best toddler group in
Waltham Forest.  Thanks are due to our
great staff team, enthusiastic volunteers and loyal members for making it such
a special place.

Thank you all so much for your help with the May Fair 2013,
from donating raffle prizes, baking cakes, or just coming along and hooking
ducks. It was our best year yet, raising nearly £3,000! We couldn’t have done
it without you! The money will go towards running the toy library, and making it
even bigger and better.

Triathalon running…
Helen Crockford, the toy library’s tireless manager,
completed the Blenheim Triathlon in June, raising a total of £600 for the play
centre. Huge thanks to anyone who sponsored her! The proceeds will go towards
renovating the garden, with raised beds, a playhouse, or two, and new
equipment. A group of young people from the Challenge Network is coming in on
Sunday 8 Sept at 11am to help, so please come along too!

Summer loving…
We will be closing on Monday 29th July for two weeks,
reopening on 12th August.  To keep you
entertained, Church Hill, Barclay and Woodside Children’s Centres will all be

Then when we re-open, we will be starting a new rolling
programme of activities for under-5s and babies, so everyone will get a chance
to take part in all our activities: physical play, messy play, story telling,
cooking, music and movement, and coffee afternoons. Pick up a copy of the
programme from the front desk.

And if the weather keeps it up, come and enjoy the new gigantic
paddling pool – remember your swimmers and towels!

Supermarket sweep
If you needed any more excuses to shop at Waitrose, the
South Woodford branch has chosen the toy library as one of its community
matters charities for July. So come on now, spend lots of money, then pop all
your green tokens in our box!

In another fundraising idea, bring in your old mobile phones
or printer cartridges you’ve lying round at home. When we get 50 we can send
them off and get dosh!

Ticket to, er, park
Rather annoyingly, parking restrictions are being introduced
to all the streets surrounding the toy library. If you need to bring your car,
we will have parking permits available to buy. Best to do so in advance,

Free memberships
Thanks to funding from Waltham Forest Council and Awards for
All, we can now offer free
for families from Black British, African, Caribbean and
Pakistani backgrounds. The first play session is free, then families receiving
benefits pay a reduced entrance fee. Please bring along proof when signing up.
You can also loan from our huge range of toys, puzzles, equipment and books
free of charge, for up to three weeks.

We will be running a series of workshops to link in with our

21 August 2013 10am–12pm Carnival Time art and craft with

and Smudge

31 October 2013 10am–12pm Fun with Food with Regina Sabur-Cross

18 February 2014 10am–12pm African Drumming with Karamoko

11 April 2014 10am–12pm Asian Dance and Vocals with Khyal Arts

Any bright ideas?
TL member Sue Dyson has volunteered to compile a book of
things to do, locally and further afield.  If you have any suggestions please
email suedyson@hotmail.com with
location and activities available, transport and travel, costs, toilet
facilities, refreshments or picnic area, and any other useful info. 

Are you handy?
Or do you know a man who is? We need someone to come and
help us fix our broken toys. Payment in biscuits and eternal gratitude.

And, breathe…
Baby yoga courses start again in September, run by Sam Syer,
while antenatal yoga with Sam Wood start again this month, on Monday nights, 7
til 8pm. There won’t be any classes in August. For more information contact (sam@gentleflowyoga.co.uk, or
07733 330171.

Second time around…
Waltham Forest NCT is hosting a second-time parents group at
the toy library on 19 July and 20 September, 12.45 to 2.15. Third-, fourth- and
fifth-timers all welcome too. For more information email walthamforestbranch@nct.org.uk,
follow them on facebook or join the yahoo group to connect with other parents
for tips and advice. 

Date for the diary
ELOP holistic lesbian and gay centre will be running a mini-fete
and doing a sponsored walk on 7 Sept at the toy library, 10am to 1.30pm. Do
come along and support them!