Zoobug treats for the kiddiewinks

We have always stuck with what we know works for our children, glasses wise. My two kiddiewinks in glasses, have very strong prescriptions so the lenses are heavy  and thick; can’t afford or justify the expense of thinning them at the moment. Thin wire/metal frames are a no no and we have stuck to Tomato glasses and centrostyle. The lovely people at Zoobug sent us some of their fabulous and quirky glasses to try, not only did they send specs for my two glasses wearing kiddiewinks, they also sent a pair of beautifully sunglasses for my eldest so she didn’t feel left out!

Little man’s were perfect and his pals call them his owl glasses, as they think he looks like an owl! The opticians and hospital we both impressed with the fit, style and durability!

Little ladies glasses weren’t the right style for her, and the thick lenses wouldn’t work, she looked over the top with the, being a smaller frame! So eldest has claimed them as her glasses, they really suit her, despite having Zoobug etched into the clear glass.



As for the sunglasses, they are a huge hit! Gorgeous! I am still slightly perturbed that her glasses are worth more than mine .


Patching is pants

Kiddiewink 2 has been supposed to patch since July, just an hour a day. Although this is nothing, compared to the 8 hour we used to have to do, little man has still posed a lot of resistance! In the end we agreed to try a few hours at school, to avoid the trauma at home! It works! He is still not keen, but the interest and fuss from the teachers and other kids has really helped! He takes a selection in so he can choose, he has even been wearing it for 2 hours so we don’t have to do it at the weekend. We had his most recent check up on Friday- we were all hoping the patching could be stopped again, but Sadly that is not to be. He didn’t perform as well, as at his last test (however he was a bit giddy and silly but the time they tested the left eye). Anyway, the upshot is, he needs it at least 2 hours a day, including weekends- little man is not a happy bunny, he says he hate it.


Saturday, I managed to get it on him eventually, although I did pin him down (oops), but once it’s on, he is okay. Sunday, was much the same with a few extra tears and shouts thrown in for good measure. But the second weekend he seems to have accepted it and choices when he would like to wear it, last Sunday he out it off all day, so in the end he was stuck wearing it to a birthday party “but mummy I won’t look good, I don’t want to wear it, I won’t look cool anymore”, he wore it though and once there, it didn’t bother him.

 Bribery is working! We have a patch chart on the fridge and when it is full, he has chosen the reward of taking his family to Splash landings waterpark at Alton Towers. This has the added incentive of the whole family encouraging him; he is water mad and it seems to be doing the trick.. Also, some brand new patch designs from Swedan has helped, if only we can get them here. All this is working for now….

Even reindeers wear glasses…

On the third day of advent my kiddiewinks sent to me…

Three spectacled reindeer

Two Santa decorations

And a tantrum about the Christmas tree…
These lovely reindeer were sent to us by the lovely lady at tomato glasses; the children were really excited to get one each. If anyone’s children need glasses, I cannot recommend the frames highly enough! The kids took to them like ducks to water, comfy, practical and very very cute

For more information visit tomato glasses website 


Patching Traumas


Little man finished patching about 18 months ago, but we were told at his last appointment to try it again for Just an hour a day, but not to worry if he becomes distressed. Although,last time, he disliked having it on,our not giving in attitude worked and we wore it every single day, for a spell he even managed 8 hours a day. Now he is five, he is somewhat more wilful and we are having a real battle! Fortunately, his school are amazing and have offered to help, so he now has the choice, if he doesn’t wear it after school, he has to wear it at school the next day. Initially, wearing at school was not an option, he inside it had to be at home, but after several evenings of resistance, he has chosen to wear it a school today, hmmmm we will see at pick up how it went….

A kind lady on the kids in specs Facebook page has sent us a selection of patches with different designs so I am hoping when he sees them this evening it might increase his motivation as he was totally bored of the designs.IMG_2215

How the children cope when designs are not available, I have no idea, I am just grateful that our hospital provides patterned ones.

For all those parents with  children currently patching, my thoughts are with you!

Child friendly Opticians are worth their weight in gold.

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Over the past three years Kiddiewink 2 has seen pretty much a different optometrist and ophthalmologist at every hospital appointment. Due to the differing rapports he forms with them (some are more child friendly than others), it is some times tricky to know if he is struggling with the test or just playing silly beggars! The care he has received has been fine but the continuity of care has been lacking somewhat! Getting an appointment I can attend has always been tricky too but we have a solution for that now. I wish we could see just a couple of different professionals, rather than a different one each time!

I also wish , now he is nearly five, he could go to our local optometrist ‘Wendy Diddams’; it was Wendy that prescribed both mine glasses , and by the time the hospital referral came through, they had happily been wearing glasses for awhile .We are hopeful that the early detection (8 months) with our youngest Kiddiewink means she will possibly avoid patching.

All my children love going to the opticians -‘Wendy diddams ‘ and all of them react far more positively in the warm and friendly environment, than a sterile unwelcoming environment. The continuity of care is brilliant and they know all of my children well! My eldest gets plenty of attention so she doesn’t feel left out and the sweets are a big hit! My eldest is actually the only one that Wendy tests at the moment due to her age. With her being a child specialist, I just wish the hospital would ‘release’ my children from all but annual checks. It is the frequency of the hospital visits that is draining and surely it would be more cost effective for the NHS for all my kiddiewinks to be checked locally. My kiddiewinks are happier and more relaxed, and the whole experience is a pleasure rather than a stress and hassle.

What I think matters when choosing  an opticians...

  • The more local the better; visits may be frequent with breakages, adjustments, scratches.
  • Find some one who likes and understands about fitting and sizing glasses on kiddiewinks , particularly if you have tiny kiddiewinks!
  • Accept their advice. Yes little johnny might well like the Spider-Man pair, but they might not work for him and his prescription.
  • Go somewhere that you and they feel as relaxed and stress free as possible! 
  • Have the number on speed dial for when the childminder becomes convinced the baby has eaten the lens. (yes that actually happened!

We are so fortunate that we have a wonderful optometrist in the town where I live, Wendy Diddams specialises in children, and all the staff are amazing. Several of my colleagues, travel to my town to have their children tested at Wendy Diddams, and it is a well regarded practice within the local community. They understand what makes my children tick. Sharon, in particular, has a wonderful relationship with my little man. Making her laugh when he tries on the glasses, he knows exactly what he likes, and doesn’t like, and tells her as he sees it.

Nothing is too much trouble, and they are happy to source specific items for us. The prescription goggles we ordered through them are perfect and their knowledge of children’s glasses is vast. A welcoming and cosy waiting room (with sweets), means they are happy and well behaved (usually).

We have been known just to pop in and say hello, although now I am back at work, this happens less frequently, as its often my Mum that pops in for the adjustments. All the staff know her well now too..; The journey into glasses with children, can feel overwhelming at times, things change and change can be tough! Having a child friendly and reliable optometrist, makes the whole journey less daunting. And lets face it, if you are going to be going there frequently, (and you will be), it is much better for all involved if the children feel they matter, rather than simply the next patient/customer.


Thanks to Starwinkle Photography, for all all these amazing photographs. Lucy is wonderful with kiddiewinks.


Kiddiewinks and Appointments

Over the last three years, kiddiewink 2 has seen a different optometrist and ophthalmologist each time. On Tuesday, little man had his three monthly check up and finally he saw the same person as last time. We have been moved to a Child Development centre linked to the hospital and it is so much better. Waiting area is brilliant for children, parking is vast and free. We always have a bag of snacks as the wait can be quite long.

Yesterday at his check, as usual, Little man wouldn’t speak at first (well for all of 30seconds). He was bothered he was due to have the drops that help check his prescription, this is not an experience he relishes so was a little down in the dumps. Instantly She cheered him up, explaining the eye drops were just like ice, as he likes ice, they were put in with no fuss or tears whatsoever. It helped that for the first time ever, it was the lady he saw last time, so she was straight away brilliant with him. All is good, he managed to do a little better than last time and his prescription we changed ever so slightly for the better. I was just relieved that he didn’t need patching again, those are words I really don’t want to hear again! 

Littlest lady has her next check in a week, fingers crossed she co-operates as she is a feisty monkey at the minute. She is still pretty good at keeping them on, but she flings them off in the car and sometimes the pram, if she is tired. Although the I believe they come off a little more for the childminder and my mum! If you ask her for them, she takes them off and hands them you, equally, she asks for them in the morning and after naps. Other kiddiewinks of her age are pretty interested in them at the moment, trying to talk them off. Surprisingly, she gets quite protective over them. Her script went from +11 to +9.5, hoping her results are positive this time too. She is somewhat more wilful than the others, so I sense if she ever needs patching we are buggered!
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Grabbing the glasses…

For the last few months, Kiddiewink 3 has been grabbing her glasses from our hands when waking from a nap. She then, usually proceeds to eat them .
This morning, she grabbed her glasses and proceeded to try and put them on! We were so excited because it means she now completely accepts them as a part of her, she is independently choosing to put them on. Rather than passively accepting them.
This happened again after her nap!

We are so lucky that she accepted them straight away and never takes them off. To see a just turned one year old trying to put on her glasses, is adorable!

Long may the glasses love continue… Our thoughts are with those currently on a glasses battle with their kiddiewinks! Stay strong, they’ll get used to them in the end.


Christmas money spent on glasses-bless!

My eldest kiddiewink has been desperate for glasses since she was three; even more so since both her siblings have them. Everytime she is tested, disappoint is etched on her face, when they tell her her eyes are perfect! This time she had a back up I plan, on being told she didn’t need them, she replied that was fine as she was going to use christmas money to buy some. Despite the staff trying to convince her she wanted to spend it on something else, she was not to be swayed and her first pair of clear lens glasses was ordered.
Days were counted down until their arrival and the opticians made a lovely fuss of fitting them and telling her about glasses care. She was over the moon and I am so pleased. Two weeks on and the novelty has worn off and she longer wears them everyday for school. I think she is just happy to be like her siblings when she chooses to be.





Prescription upped and traumas with patching…

Kiddiewink 3 had another eye test on Saturday, to check how she was adjusting to her glasses. She is brilliant keeping them on, but the test showed that there is still a significant amount of far sightedness there, so her prescription is being upped to +9 from +7. I had expected this as the initial test showed her to be +11! Fingers crossed it doesn’t need upping much more! She is a star and so far no battles with wearing them!

Kiddiewink 2 is going through a bit of a defiant mood and is resisting the patch big time. “patch time” “no it’s not” shouted crossly with stamping feet. he has now taken himself up to his bedroom to play to avoid the patch a little longer! He will do anything at the minute to procrastinate and when not at pre school, it often is going on around 3pm rather than first thing in the morning. Not that it matters, but I have started dreading the battle again! I really do feel for him! Fingers crossed, it reduces not increases at the appointment on Friday!

videos of the start of kiddiewink 2’s resistance

Beginning patch procrastination

patching procrastination

Desperate for glasses…

Kiddiewink 1 is desperate for glasses and once she spotted her brothers lenses had fallen out, she seems to have bagsied them for herself.
“If I have pretend glasses on at the Halloween party, can you tell my friends they are reading glasses. I want you to tell them that, can you?”
“But you haven’t got any pretend glasses”
She then held up her brothers glasses without the lenses haha.

She then insisted on wearing them to the bonfire, with a tutu donated by a friend! She looked cracking lol.

She wore them all weekend and I was just hoping the novelty would wear off, luckily but Monday she seemed to be over it, and they have not been put on again!