ARTICLE by Natalie Brown

August Bump + Beyond news

 |  Reading time: 5 minutes
B_for_Blog | Natural Baby Shower

The summer holidays have just begun which means August is finally here!

Naturally, that means it’s time to look back on the month passed and the news that had us smiling here at office HQ and across the country. From inspiring business ventures to amazing volunteer work, discover the newsworthy stories that we loved this July...

Photo by <a href="">Jessica Rockowitz</a> on <a href="">Unsplash</a>

Woman's IVF journey sparks her eco-business venture

Image via Hoopsy

When 45-year-old Lara Solomon discovered a younger friend had opted for IVF treatment, she knew that this was something to look into for herself. Although single, Lara knew she wanted to be a mama so, taking things into her own hands, went onto spend around £20,000 on her own IVF. Sadly, after discovering her rounds were unsuccessful, the exhaustive process had revealed something else about her experience…      

Sick of using so many plastic pregnancy tests during the course of her treatment, Lara knew lots of other women also taking countless tests, some just minutes apart and all of which ending up in landfill. After looking into the damage, Lara discovered that nearly 12 million home pregnancy tests are completed annually in the UK alone.

Lara, who claims not to be a full-on eco warrior, says she does try to be mindful of how her actions affect the environment. So, the idea for her next business venture was born; to create an eco-friendly paper pregnancy test that uses a strip test method. Lara developed Hoopsy; a paper test that can be cut in half – where the non-urinated element is recycled. The tests, now approved for sale in the UK and Europe have an HCG sensitivity of 25mIU/ml and are over 99 per cent accurate from the day of the expected period!

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Despite the emotional and physical turmoil of going through rounds of unsuccessful IVF treatments, Lara used her experience to turn her hand to something good, not only for mamas-to-be but for the planet too. Her mission to bring people an eco-friendly alternative to pregnancy tests is definitely a success story that we want to shout about here at Natural Baby Shower!

Declan Donnelly from duo Ant and Dec and his wife welcome their second child

Image via Twitter

One half of the famous presenter-duo Ant and Dec has welcomed their second baby into the world! Declan Donnelly, also known to the nation as Dec and his wife Ali Astall welcomed their second child and first son, Jack to the family on July 23.  Announcing the birth via Twitter, the news of the couple’s pregnancy was unbeknown to lots of fans, with many responding to the news with messages of congratulations but also surprise. There were even a few other famous faces in the replies, such as Love Island’s Laura Whitmore who gushed: "Delighted for you both! Congrats."

Dec and Ali, who met in 2013, wed and welcomed their first child Isla, in 2015. Dec wrote at the time: "Ali and I are thrilled to announce the arrival of our baby girl, Isla Elizabeth Anne, who was born just after 9 o’clock this morning," posted on the page he shares with Ant McPartlin.

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As one half of Britain’s favourite presenter-duo, it’s hard not to love seeing that Dec and his growing family are happy and healthy. Now a father of two, it will be exciting to watch Jack and Isla grow up and hear some of the funny parenting stories that Dec will likely be soon to share!

100 rarest baby names in the UK revealed

Photo via Unsplash

New research conducted by Play Like Mum has looked at the latest available ONS data to uncover a list of over 3000 of the rarest names in the UK for boys and girls. They have then deduced this information to reveal the top 50 for each sex, including some of the influences as to why these names have been chosen.

Some of the rarest boys names included Daniel-James, Drake, Esteban and Wiley. Some of the explanations behind these names included Daniel James, the footballer, moving to his current club Leeds United and Wiley a nickname of William which could have stemmed from the royal family.

On the other hand, some of the rarest girls’ names included Fifi, Marvel, Saffi and Antonietta. Potential factors influencing the popularity of these names included a decline in notoriety of Fifi and the Flowertots which stopped airing over 10 years ago as well as Saffi becoming a new nickname and way to say Sophie.

On their page, they concluded “ We looked at the latest available ONS (Office for National Statistics) to retrieve names which were registered three times or less.”

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It's always fun looking into the popular, trending or seasonal names chosen by the nation. However, not often do we get to see the rare and unique names ranking on our feeds. Despite their rarity, we really loved some of these names and maybe we'll see more of our little ones carrying these names in the coming years!

Baby Basics volunteers thanked by mums-to-be for their invaluable contribution

Image via Northamptonshire Telegraph

Volunteers at Baby Basics' Northampton branch have been thanked for their efforts in providing over 1,800 starter pack to mums-to-be across the country. The starter packs are for babies from newborn to three months and have not only provided somewhere safe for babies to sleep but clothes, blankets and toiletries for both little ones and mum.

Baby Basics UK is a nationwide organisation helping mums from all walks of life for various different reasons, such as financial hardship. The Northampton branch, which was the first branch outside of Sheffield where Baby Basics originated, has been going for over 10 years thanks to volunteers and donations lead Sabrina Oakley and the support of those in the local community. 

After receiving praise, while the charity never meet the mums they support, they are glad to know their help is making a real difference at a time when cost of living is at an all time high.

Sabrina said: "For us it's about showing them that there's a community that cares, and shows them love and hope... We want the mum to feel the love and the care that's gone into every starter pack."

Ahead of their annual summer break, the charity held a thank you lunch for volunteers, as well as trustees and supporters. 

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Both Natural Baby Shower and our brands including Silver Cross have supported Baby Basics UK with donations and products to help families in need. The charity has become such an important lifeline to many families across the country, especially their Starter Packs, which have made a real difference to new mums and babies. Without the help of volunteers, this service wouldn't be available, so it is really important to take some time to appreciate their hard and selfless work!

Have your say

We’d love to hear your thoughts on the above so, if there’s a topic of discussion you think we should include in our next monthly Bump + Beyond round up, please get in touch via email to

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