Jolly Tots (July)

What a difference a year brings……… I initially didn’t think there was
much I could write in relation to Jolly Tots, but having seen some
of ‘our mums’ on my walk in Tatton this morning, I thought perhaps I
should, if only to endorse the role we play in the community.
I was going to head it “12 HIGH CHAIRS FOR SALE”!

This time last year, we were drawing up a list of new equipment for restarting in September, top of the list being the high chairs but all
those little ones will now be wanting to sit on the big ‘little’ chairs! Perhaps I need to make a new list in eager anticipation – “12 little red chairs!”.
It has been wonderful to see Jolly Tots more than double in size since it started in January 2018. We often mention the 30 to 35 kiddies attending each week, but mustn’t forget the adults who bring them, making an
outreach potential of 60!

When we first started finishing the session with our “What’s in the Bag?” and Jolly Tots prayer song, quite a few mums/carers would leave early
– now every adult and child is sitting in a circle, ready and waiting to join in the singing, having first helped tidy away the toys, three little ones usually racing to roll the play mat away (at least that was what happened when
we last met in early March!).
Friendships have developed and I know of at least two mums and their little ones, having no other family near by, have now made their own support bubble and meet up regularly for walks. We are being missed and the messages I hear from those I see around the town are
“when are we going to be back at Jolly Tots?” and one little one asking “Are we going to do “What’s in the Bag?”; it pulls at the heartstrings. Obviously with all of the Jolly Tots volunteers being ‘older’, this is a real
issue and time alone will tell how many will feel able to
continue when taking their own well-being into consideration, not only at this particular time but also in the long term. Please, therefore, pray that we have the confidence to make wise decisions for ourselves and all
those who attend Jolly Tots, but also having paramount in our decisions “What would Jesus have us do?”

It has been such a privilege to help run Jolly Tots since September 2018, to watch the babies become toddlers and their personalities develop, and to realise we are meeting a need as a place where mums/dads/ grandparents/carers can meet unconditionally in a safe and welcoming environment. Without those who help me each week, this would not have been possible – THANK YOU!
I do hope that by the time you are all reading the September issue of OPen Doors, Jolly Tots will have a “re-starting date”.
Jackie

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