Mrs Enchanting World focuses on a contestant's contribution to their community, their charitable endeavours and their dedication to a platform they wish to champion. I have raised vital funds for local family and health charities by completing charity challenges and social media campaigns. I have also been an advocate for one of societies last taboos - long-term infertility.
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Breastfeeding Friendly Directory - Dorset
BH2 Odeon Cinema, Bournemouth - Newbie Screenings
5/5 - I could see due to the soft light, I had plenty of room in the seat and as a bonus, the cup holders meant I could reach my drink and feed at the same time. Staff were respectful, but non-plussed when I had to latch madam repeatedly. I felt completely comfortable, especially surrounded by other mums who normalised the need to feed on demand.
Costa Coffee, Poole
5/5 - OK so, with the past press coverage aside, here is my experience. I breastfed in the Poole branch around lunchtime. I found the shop to be full of other mums and their children, which in itself made me feel more comfortable. I don't tend to use a muslin or sling cover to feed as Lily doesn't like it and I get more stressed trying to see what I am doing. With this in mind, I had absolutely no issues feeding. If any customers around me minded, they kept it quiet and staff left me well alone to feed at my leisure. I was surrounded by other feeding mums and we got talking over our respective tables and babies. All in all, I had a positive feeding experience.
Glazed Donuts, Bournemouth
5/5 - Of course madam decided that the rain had made her hungry and what was supposed to be a quick pop in and buy visit, turned into a length feeding session. As I wasn't planning on consuming the doughnuts in-store, I thought it only polite to ask if I was able to sit at a table and feed madam. The staff could not have been more welcoming. They were the perfect combination of accepting and respectful, meaning that I felt relaxed.
5/5 (I wish I could give more) - She of course needed to be fed during the event, so I wandered off looking for a chair. The staff could not have been more helpful! They offered me a chair, numerous beverages (so very kind) and asked if I needed anything to make my experience more comfortable. Whilst the other bloggers were busy making bath bombs and fresh cleansers, I was embarking on a 45 minute feed.
What could have been a lonely experience, where I missed out on the fun whilst feeding in a corner, turned into the most inclusive and open breastfeeding experience I have encountered. The staff were respectful and not fussed (the basics of a good breastfeeding experience), but what happened next set them above every other venue I have reviewed; a team member could see I was parked for the long haul, so came and sat with me. She came over to talk about motherhood, how I was doing, about Lily and our shared experience of life in charge of a tiny human. This very small gesture was actually massive; she not only normalised the fact that I was breastfeeding, but made me feel great about feeding in Lush. I was welcome and encouraged to be a mum in her store.
I asked her about their breastfeeding policy and was amazed to find out that they are actively encouraging new mums to visit. They offer a safe place to feed, can help you entertain your little and pamper you, whilst helping advise you on the perfect purchase to suit your needs that day. My advice would be to give them a try, you deserve some mum time and Lush can give you the perfect experience.
Pizza Express, BH2, Bournemouth and Poole
5/5 - Once they had realised that I was breastfeeding, they couldn't have been more helpful. They took my order and always kept an eye, but left me alone to feed in peace. Nothing is more stressful than having someone hover over you, whilst you are trying to get a good latch and convince baby to feed rather than look around the restaurant.
Priest’s House Museum, Wimborne
5/5 - Of course madam decided that she needed to be fed in the middle of the museum. At least she chose the hat exhibition, which was the room I was most looking forward to. Staff were not fussed by my feeding and a chair was provided in each room, whilst not specifically for the purpose of feeding, it certainly made life easier. I didn't feel out of place and was left alone to feed at leisure. A big breastfeeding friendly thumbs up from me.
4/5 - Definitely, staff are respectful when you are feeding, but happy to take and deliver orders whilst you are feeding. In conclusion, I felt comfortable, welcome and at ease whilst feeding.
Role Play World, Charminster
5/5 - madam required feeding half-way through our session and I worried this might be awkward with so many children around, However the staff made me totally normal and comfortable and the other parents were friendly and reassuring. I had a comfy chair to sit in and a table to place everything I needed, with plenty of room for madam to spread out. All in all, I had a great feeding experience.
S.L.A.M Stroller Workouts
5/5 - Oh my goodness did madam throw the full range of curve balls at us during our session. She decided she hated her pram, wanted feeding mid-warm up, then needed to be changed on a bench during a storm (typical) then was overtired but not interested in sleep. There were tears, spilt milk and a lot of fussing, but Emma had the patience of a saint, waiting for me to finish feeding and talking to me throughout as feeding is totally normal. She then was hands on helping me hold down the pram, changing bag and baby in gale force winds. She even gave me some great tips on soothing baby during her 'I hate pram' and overtired phases. She even rocked the pram, so that I could complete the reps without worrying about Lily.
I'm conclusion breastfeeding is not only accepted, but actively encouraged during these sessions. If your baby is hungry, then you are free to feed and catch up as you need. I also met other breastfeeding mums who made me feel like part of a tribe for the first time.
Sprinkles Gelato, Winton
3/5 - I have breastfed at this venue several times with mixed experience. The staff are always brilliant. They don't pay any attention to you as you breastfeed and are happy to bring your food whilst you are feeding. The tables however can be a little snug and require careful manoeuvring in order not to bump baby's head. The best tables for feeding are unfortunately the tables that face the massive glass frontage. All in all the venue is breastfeeding friendly I would say, if you choose your table carefully.
However I have had a few mild negative reactions from other customers; mostly women surprisingly. When in a group of other feeding mums it is easy to ignore these looks and the odd tut, but when I have been on my own, I did find it a little off-putting. This of course is not the fault of Sprinkles or their staff.
Do you know a breastfeeding friendly venue, or would you like to know if your favourite venue is breastfeeding friendly? Let me know and I will test them out! Maria and Lily XOXO