Monday, 25 February 2013

#oneweek - Dino boy grewed up

My snuffling little Dino Boy has turned into a fully fledged Destructo Boy. I must have blinked and he grew up, or maybe a just kept on feeding him, either way it happened and it is a big part of the story of my winter.

Last week growing up went on warp speed as he had his first haircut. (I was meant to show a before and after pic but the middle photo of him wearing big sisters trainers just jumped into the frame.)

Rather skilfully *ahem* I have segued into a commentary or review of his first haircut, one of the adventures from half term.

With Pickle we have a rammed memory box; tokens from so many special events from her first years and photos of her every breakthrough. With DB the mementos have been a little scarce as I juggle with children, dog and handbags (you ought to see us when we go out on roller skates, then it gets down right comical). To counteract this parental deficiency I decided to make a big deal of DB's first haircut, inspired in part by find out on Twitter that special children's hair salons exist. So after hours of surfing I finally decided that a trip to Happy Faces was a must.

We travelled into London full of anticipation. I had checked and double checked, planned the day around their having two stylists so both DB and Pickle could be coiffed simultaneously. At the allocated time we ran excitedly so as not to be late. Then we arrived...oh!

The wheels fell off our metaphoric pushchair. They had no record of our appointment, then disdain gave way to a sneer as she suggested we had booked at the wrong branch. I had checked a few times but the stylist was not hearing me, it was clear she thought that I was a fool.

[For the record their website is totally misleading if not plain wrong - if I had clicked in the 'contact' page I would have found the correct number, but the site seems to work on a generic template for all branches so despite having the details of the branch on the page clearly displayed they have then main branch number listed on the internal pages so I did call Clapham not Fulham.]

I resisted the urge the have a tantrum and asked if she could possibly cut my children's hair and so the game was on again. A sullen flick of the switch and Peppa Pig was on whether we wanted it or not, then a few snips and the baby hair was on the floor.

By now I was on critical mode and my mind was thinking bullet points. Why when he had a fringe down to his chin did we get a few random clippings as our commemorative lock of hair? Why did they do Polaroid snaps as before and after shots when digital gives more flexibility if the first shot is blurred? Why was the laminate on the surface visibly chipped where the cables had been fitted for the TVs? Why was the no light or towel in the loo?

Why were there a few half eaten rice cakes on the worktop? Why, if they promote first hair cuts, were there no change facilities (but we could use the red leatherette sofa in front of the windows)? Why are they so proud of their kids nail varnish then they suggest to the Pickle that she would like her nails painted in a fetching shade from Barry M?

It was not cheap, overall I spent almost £80 and it seemed to forget that if you are offering a luxury service it should make your feel like a Princess?
Am I slating the place? No! I would love to hear from Happy Faces and to know that they have updated their site and I will be able to update this post. I am now tempted to visit Tantrums to see how it compares with the market leader.

I really want Happy Faces to do well, I believe that a gentle nudge in the posterior could be what they really need. I visited during half term when the rest of child orientated London was heaving and we were the only clients for that hour with no more appointments being made by phone; this should not be the case. Life should be fun and I love the idea of hair cuts being something to be looked forward to. Please Happy Faces up your game, your owe to yourselves!

There are some real treats to read on the #oneweek linky.

one week

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