Hi, I'm Claire! Mother of four, step-mum of two, birth and baby geek, early years play enthusiast, and self confessed tree hugger! Nature based play, touch, connection, oxytocin and supporting parents and babies are my vibe, as well as empowering parents with education, tools and techniques to find their own flow through their journey as a family.
I am mummy to Dylan (13, Frankie (10), and twins Louie and Pippa-Jane (8). As a family we adore spending time in nature and playing football, and I am known to be partial to the odd glass of gin and lemonade!
My own experiences of birth trauma, postnatal depression and anxiety, along with my husband's subsequent mental health breakdown, all drive my passion to create a community of support accessible to all.
In what feels like a past life, I graduated from the University Of Wales, Newport, with a BA(Hons) Degree in Ethics and Community Justice, and I worked as a Retail Manager for 10 years. However, after having children of my own - along with my own first hand experiences of the perinatal period - I was drawn in to the world of perinatal support and early years development.
I feel passionate about ensuring that all families are able to access impartial, evidence based information and non judgmental support at each and every stage of their parenting journey. They say it takes a village, but I remember sobbing in to my cold cup of tea with blistered nipples and a crying baby, wondering where this mythical village actually was. I was too anxious to step foot in to baby classes, and became isolated and lonely.
So, when I had my second baby and postnatal depression set in, I realised that Monmouthshire was really lacking in support and community for parents - so I made it my mission to change that!
After initially training and working with a franchise for 3 years, I launched Little Pips 6 years ago.
In 2018, I was honoured to win the MAMA Award for Antenatal Teacher of the Year.
In 2019, I won the Mpower Community Award.
In 2019, we also formed the Little Pips Choir in support of one of our families who found out that their little girl is profoundly deaf. As "Lola's Choir", we learnt to sing and sign, and stood on stage united in love to sing at The Dolman Theatre.
In 2020, I had a poem published in the beautiful book, "Mother Light - Poetic Voices of Motherhood", alongside Blossom and Berry teachers and colleagues. I was honoured to stand on stage and read my poem at the Nurturing The Future conference in London last year.
In 2021, I also had a piece of my art journaling published in a beautiful nature journal - I love to be creative!
In October 2021, I was thrilled to be awarded the 'Nurturing the Future Catalyst Award', honouring my work supporting families in their first 1001 days. I am so passionate about providing continuity of care at a time when families worlds are constantly changing, so this award truly meant the world.
In early 2022, Little Pips secured £500 funding through the You Decide Monmouthshire project, meaning that the Little Pips Cuppa Club could remain free for families to access support, community and connection.
Little Pips has also formed a partnership with the Mind Monmouthshire "Make or Move Campaign", bringing communities together and boosting mental and physical wellbeing.
As a Developmental Play Practitioner specialising in nature based learning, I was delighted to be offered the role of the Play The Nature Way Lead Practitioner for the Carly Budd Developmental Play Academy, and have written class plans for teachers to use with their clients.
And in 2022, The Little Hygge Caravan launched, allowing me to provide a safe and nurturing space at events across South Wales for families to feed, change or rest with their little ones, and access support.
In 2023, I was delighted to be once again awarded funding for The Little Pips Cuppa Club from the "You Decide Monmouthshire"fund.
I am now continuing to develop my skills, training as a Level 3 Forest School Leader, and Infant Developmental Play Practitioner.
It has always been important to me that Little Pips is accessible to all, and I therefore offer a balance of both free and payable support and classes, with an ever growing community of hundreds of families across Monmouthshire, Newport and the Forest of Dean. From antenatal and baby classes, to the free weekly Cuppa Club, appeals for families in need and a Welly Bank, Little Pips is a beautiful, nurturing and safe space to feel held and supported throughout your journey.
Classes are open to all and are currently held at Portskewett and Sudbrook Recreation Hall and Caldicot Castle Country Park. I also offer 1-2-1 sessions in the comfort of your family home.
Diploma in Hypnobirthing - KG Hypnobirthing
Diploma in Baby Massage - Blossom and Berry
Soothe, Settle and Sleep Instructor and Colic Consultant - Blossom and Berry
Tummy Time Practitioner - Carly Budd Developmental Play Academy
Developmental Play Practitioner 1-3years - Carly Budd Developmental Play Academy
Play The Nature Way Practitioner - Carly Budd Developmental Play Academy
Baby Massage and Yoga for Babies with Additional Needs - Blossom and Berry
Tree Babies Guide - Blossom and Berry
Beyond Birth Mental Wellbeing Practitoner - Sophie Burch, Beyond Birth
Postnatal Recovery Massage - Sophie Messager
Rebozo - Sophie Messager
Postnatal Doula, specialising in traditional Moroccan Postpartum Medicines - The Nafsa Project
Solihull Approach Breastfeeding Peer Supporter - The Acorn Project
Potty Training Practitioner - Little Wildflower
Terrific Two's Practitioner - Little Wildflower
Aromatherapy for Family Wellbeing - Little Wildflower
Natural Weaning - Little Wildflower
Hygge in the Early Years Accreditation - Hygge in the Early Years
Mother Circle - Mandy Rees, Mother for Life (ongoing)
Level 3 Forest School Leader - Go Wild Forest School Training (ongoing)
Level 3 Infant Developmental Play Practitioner - Carly Dudd Developmental Play Academy (ongoing)