#TearsIntoSmiles with Elastoplast

The #TearsIntoSmiles campaign has challenged me to turn those tear filled moments into a happy ones.

I don’t think there is a household in the country that doesn’t have a selection of plasters. We have long been fond of the ones with fancy pictures, as somehow they seem to make things just a little bit better. I used to have to stock up in the USA on these fun additions to the medicine cabinet, with favourites like the lion king and winnie the pooh. Now there are lots to choose from and the Star wars ones are an instant hit.

When the boy has an accident I used to take on the strategy from his nursery which was to treat the wound with magic liquid (water) and then a big hug and a plaster. The boy was always ready to show off his Piglet or Eeyore. The boy loves to be outside, and his favourite at the moment is water pistol battles with his dad or friends. Bumps cuts and bruises are part of childhood and turning the #TearsIntoSmiles is a great way to make things better. I love the video from Elastoplast turning real tears into these miniature paintings.

Making sure that you get out and about in the fresh air is the best way for kids to learn about their surroundings and their limitations. The boy has had his fair share of bumps and scrapes. With a love of Fencing we now carry a first aid kit with us to every event. This kit will always contain a few plasters as well as cool packs and cream for bumps and bruises. I still use magic water, and you cant beat a big hug to make everything feel a little bit better.

This post is an entry for the BritMums #TearsintoSmiles Challenge, sponsored by Elastoplast.

 

Getting Dressed Up with JD Williams – review

With the long weekends, come the spring and summer weddings. I had a wedding of some good friends to look forward to. With nothing to wear, JD Williams came to my rescue. I live in Jeans and tunic tops and was not sure where to start. JD Williams have a great selection of dresses with items from occasion wear to everyday.

I was very hopeful that I would find something suitable for a spring wedding. I started with a few searches in the JD Williams online store and found I could narrow down my search by colour, size, style and even occasion. I had wanted a mid length flare dress and had a shortlist of about three. One stood out and despite it being a label I was not familiar with, it kept drawing my attention. JD Williams did have brands I had heard of, and plenty of choice.

The Nightingales dress that I ordered was perfect, and I chose to add the matching shawl as you never know with British weather. I love the cotton content, and the fit was very good. JD Williams also have a large range of shoes, and many come in extra width sizes. The first pair that I chose were too big. It seems that maybe my feet are shrinking. The second pair fitted like a glove and I have been very impressed with the fit, and style. I chose flats as there is so much standing to be done at a wedding, not to mention the dancing.

I love my Nightingales dress from JD Williams, and am looking forward to taking it on holiday later this month. I think the fit is superb, and great quality for the price. The shoes have been much admired and despite not breaking them in before my friends big day there was no rubbing. I can honestly say that I have been very impressed by my first online dress shopping experience. If I’m lucky enough to be invited to more weddings I know where I will be looking first.

Disclaimer I was sent these items in return for an honest review, the words are my own and have not been altered

 

Jamie Raven Card Magic – Review

Jamie Raven Card Magic is one of four magic sets available online from Paul Lamond RRP £10.95 suitable for ages 8+.

Ok, so it is confession time as we didn’t know who Jamie Raven was, but the boy has always loved magic sets. We were excited to see what the Jamie Rave Card Magic box contained . The box includes a two packs of cards, a mystery box with spare cards and a secret membership card which gives you access online to the tricks.

The boy was a little puzzled that the Jamie Raven card magic set doesn’t contain any instructions, but once you have accessed the internet and been emailed the link it all became clear. ( My email went to spam so check there if you don’t get an instant reply)

Jamie Raven is the self-proclaimed runner-up, or “First placed Human” from Britain’s got talent series 2015. His website is easy to navigate, and once the boy had learnt the first trick he was keen to learn some more. Each trick video is easy to follow as Jamie performs the trick for you to watch, followed by a step by stem explanation of how it works and finally some tips on performance.

The boy learnt 4 very simple but amazingly effective tricks which he was then able to perform confidently on Bingo granny. He certainly had us all thinking and I loved the mind reading trick as I had no idea how it was don’t until the boy showed me. We decided you could do variations of each trick and could see how you could make them your own with a few simple additions!

We all had great fun learning Jamie Raven Card Magic tricks. The boy liked the easy to learn from videos and Jamies presentation style means I think anyone could easily master these tricks.

Visit Jamie Ravens website for more information on the trick sets available, or purchase your set from my affiliate link below.


Disclaimer we were sent this set in exchange for review, the words remain our own and have not been altered.

Admiral Young Driver – Review

Admiral Young Driver program is a safe way to teach children aged as young as 5 to control a car and start the enjoyment of driving. The boy was a little nervous to try out the Admiral Young drivers programme. He needn’t have been as he had a great time.

The boy want’s to be a policeman when he is older and learning to drive will be a big part of the job if he does eventually choose this as a career. I have always wanted thought its good to learn things early so driving lessons was on my list of things to get the boy to try. We booked a 1/2 hour lesson with the Admiral young drivers at Southampton WestQuay car park.

The boy was worried he might drive over the edge of the car park. The booking in lady quickly put his mind at rest, as apparently this is a question she is asked often! There are some height restrictions for the drivers and they should be over 10 and a minimum of 1.42m tall. The boy was soon seated in the car and there are proper cushions to bring the seat height up to the correct height. I was allowed to join in as a passenger for the lesson, while dad stood at a safe distance and took pictures.

The top-level of the WestQuay car park was set out with junctions and obstacles and with other Admiral young drivers there is plenty to be aware of while learning to drive. The boy was put at ease by his instructor Barry, and within 5 minutes they had completed the pre drive checks and we were moving.

Each new Admiral young driver is given a diary which is completed after each lesson. This is a great record of what you learned as well as being something to record the steps and progress. As a first lesson the boy learnt to make pre drive checks of mirrors, seat and starting the vehicle. He then went on to control the vehicle and completed junctions and a slalom.

I was very impressed by the teaching, and the instructor moved the lesson on at the speed that each student needs. The boy was clearly in control and loving every minute. There was time to ask lots of questions and the instructor had lots of knowledge of the Skoda citigo that we were driving.

The half hour Admiral young drivers lesson was a good length for a first lesson as the boy said his legs felt a little wobbly after all the clutch control. The boy has also asked when he can have his next lesson, as he enjoyed it far more than he thought he would and I think maybe a few lessons a year at his age certainly wouldn’t hurt.

Visit the Admiral Young Driver website for all the different options from lessons to Birthday parties and even the chance to drive a Bentley.

Disclaimer we were asked to try out the young driver programme in return for a review, the words remain ours and have not been altered.

 

Dig In – Giveaway

 

Dig In is our favourite Drumond Park game that we have reviewed over the last few years, and is set to be a great family game for generations to come. Dig in is available for RRP £19.99, and is suitable for ages 8+.

Dig In has been a big hit in the dragon house, not only for its fast competitive game play. It’s easy to learn rules mean that it has proved to be a great family and friends game as well as one the adults enjoy. With 128 colourful characters to find, gameplay is as simple as find and match against the clock.

This is what Drumond Park have to say about Dig in:

You’ll find Dig In! intense and totally engrossing.  Each player is living-in-the-moment, fixated at finding their pieces.  So for those 15 seconds the rest of the world is shut out – and nothing else matters.  It’s a mesmerizing formula, ensuring hours of stimulating fun for the players, who’re desperate to be the first to fill their card!

Leave Dig In! lying around the house and we guarantee it won’t be long before the white bowl and its colourful contents prove to be irresistible to people passing by.  Those smooth and tactile model pieces are just waiting to be played with, touched, swirled around and delved into… Drumond Park’s research has shown that it’s almost impossible to walk past without having a sneaky, satisfying rummage in that bowl, or even a quick 15 second session with the timer on, all on your own!

And adults who’re looking for grown-up, after dinner party fun will be surprised to find this game totally engrossing and amazing in its deceptive and addictive simplicity – and keep coming back for more! One thing’s for certain… Dig In! is set to be a winner with everyone – family and friends alike!

 

So here is your chance to get your hands on Dig in, I have one to giveaway to one lucky family. Simply comment and complete the gleam app below.

Dig In 2017

Disclaimer Drumond park asked us to choose our favourite game from 2016 to giveaway, all words remain our own and have not been altered.

Terms & Conditions:

The giveaway is open to the UK only

  • It is mandatory to leave a comment in the post comment section answering the question specified. Other tasks completed will gain additional entries. The winner will be checked to make sure they have both left a comment and completed the task for the winning entry.
  • Winner will be drawn randomly after the competition closes at 23:59 on Sunday 23rd April 2017
  • The winner will be sent an  e-mail to the e-mail address left at time of entry. The winner will need to reply to the e-mail within 7 days of the notification. Every effort will be made to contact the winner, but if no response is made within the 7 days a new winner will be chosen.
  • The prize details are stated at the top of the giveaway, and may be subject to change if they become unavailable.
  • The prize will be posted by the promoter, unfortunately I cannot be held responsible or replace missing parcels. Please contact me if there is a problem.
  • Please allow 28 days from notification for your prize to be sent out.
  • This competition is listed at: Win competitions at ThePrizeFinder.com and SuperLucky
SuperLucky Blog Giveaway Linky

LoopDeLoom – Review

LoopDeLoom is a fun spinning weaving loom, that is not only simple but fast! LoopDeLoom from Map toys is available online for RRP £24.99, and is suitable for ages 8+.

The LoopDeLoom box contains the loom base with 15 pegs, a ball of multi coloured yarn and instructions. The basic set up for the LoopDeLoom is very simple the pegs are fitted in alternate directions, so that when the lever is moved from left to right the pegs turn. The instructions guide you on how to do this, and there are also online videos.

Once you have decided on the size of the piece you want to weave and cut the yarn to length then you clip the warp threads into the pegs. To weave you simply take your weft tread and hold it taught across the top of the pegs pulling it down between the center of the pegs. Rotate the lever and repeat.

LoopDeLoom weaving is really that simple! In the instructions it tells you not to pull the weft (weaving) threat too tight, and I found if you do it causes the end pegs to start to touch and will make your weaving shrink. If you forget to turn the lever the thread will simply slide out. So you can’t really go wrong.

Once you have a reasonable amount of weaving you can move it down the pegs and this will tighten the wool. This was very satisfying as you watched the weaving grow, and I found you get very quick after only a few goes. If the pegs get to full you simply slide out a peg from the weaving. Making sure that you place it back into the base of the loom the correct way around.

To finish the piece you can knot the ends or sew them depending on what you plan to make. Knotting my piece was simple with a neat fringed edge that looked pretty. LoopDeLoom was great fun and perfect for a child that has a little patience as the results grow quickly. The enclosed multi coloured wool is also pretty and is a great first make.

For more ideas on what you can create with LoopDeLoom visit the website and video tutorials.

Disclaimer we were sent this loom in return for a review.

Bath’s Top Rated Indian Cuisine: A Review 

While the winter blues have us all begging for a bit of spice in our lives, I’ve investigated Bath’s top Indian restaurants that are sure to add pizzazz back to our palettes.

The Rajpoot

If you are looking for an award-winning meal, all fingers point to The Rajpoot. A favourite of many, this restaurant caters to Indian food gurus and the “extra mild spice, please” beginners. The Rajpoot offers a romantic but functional environment that can fit a work event or date night. If you are aching for a fine-dining, fully ethnic Indian food experience, the Rajpoot has what you are longing for.

Bombay Lounge

For friendly service, great décor and a comforting meal, the Bombay Lounge has you covered.  This place has an extensive menu that can please both vegan and carnivore, with loads of customisable options to meet your needs. If the coziness of your home has you wanting to lounge in pyjamas for the evening, have no fear: Bombay Lounge is featured on Hungry House, a takeaway app that allows you to browse through menus and have your cravings delivered to your doorstep.  Bombay Lounge is also budget friendly and definitely does not compromise on quality.

The Boojon Tandoori

Named one of England’s best curry places, Bath’s The Boojon Tandoori is a local hotspot. Although traditional curry is winning the title at this location, the menu option ranges from poppadum’s to pilau rice to vegetable Jalfrezi. The Boojon Tandoori boasts quality and quantity without forfeiting your newly established budget for 2017: most dishes are in the £5-£9 range.

Bengal Brasserie

Meat lovers, you will love Bengal Brasserie off of Milsom Street. Locally known for the most succulent chicken and lean lamb, this restaurant has a beautiful interior and top-notch staff.  For vegetarians, do not fret: Bengal Brasserie also offers a generous meat-free menu to please everybody at the table.  If you are in a hurry, takeaway options are available here (and at a 10% discount on weekends!)

The Eastern Eye

For a glamorous dine-in experience, I recommend The Eastern Eye. With beautifully decorated murals on every wall and domed ceilings, you will quickly be transported out of Bath and into another world. Voted restaurant of the year for the Southwest Region, The Eastern Eye has an extensive and detailed website that promotes its many features and offers a history lesson on the beautiful building. The menu is user-friendly and offers a variety of options included a lovely buffet. For those seeking the full Indian food experience, The Eastern Eye is where you want to be.

Disclaimer this is a collaborative post.

365 Little Things Ravensburger Puzzle – Review

365 Little Things is a 500 piece puzzle from Ravensburger RRP £7.99 suitable for ages 10+.

This is my first puzzle for 2017 and it was nice to start with a fun smaller puzzle. The 365 Little things are an interesting and eclectic mix of the familiar and unusual objects you might find in the bottom of a draw. From the box the picture looks photographic. On closer inspection of the pieces you realise that in fact the 365 Little Things are illustrated. The artist Mike Spike, is famous for his photographic illustrative style.

365 Little things was both a challenge and enjoyable as you discover the little treasures illustrated on the puzzle. there are coins, and trinkets that somehow look all familiar and I particularly liked the little spotty pig which I’m sure was something my Nan owned.

This puzzle has been a complete treasure and I’m sure will be on that I will enjoy completing again. It took some time to complete as there are no particularly blocks of colour to follow. I found the best way was to identify pieces from the individual items like all the coins and shells. completing it this way didn’t make it any less enjoyable.

Completing the 365 Little things puzzle was an achievement as I found it pretty tricky for a 500 piece puzzle. I loved the challenge and the style of the illustration as it is different to doing a photograph or painted picture.

Have a look below for my Amazon link to the 365 Little Things puzzle, or look for more of Mike Spikes puzzles on the Ravensburger website.

 

Disclaimer I was sent this puzzle in return for an honest review.

#ShareTheLove of baking this Christmas

I love to #ShareTheLove of baking at Christmas with friends and family. Sometimes this is with a simple baked cookie, or gingerbread. I have made jam and cakes and even my own mincemeat. This year I wanted to get the boy involved and #ShareTheLove of baking and decided that I would dig out our old family favourite Christmas cake recipe.

Our family recipe for Christmas cake is from our neighbour from when I was very small. Aunty Ursula was the lady in the road that all the kids used to go to for cake and sweet treats. My mum made friends with Ursula not long after we moved to Sussex, and was a source of much of my mum’s baking knowledge. A few years ago I was given the piece of paper with Ursula’s Xmas cake recipe. The paper almost as memorable as the cake itself and since then I have vowed to recreate the cake of my family Christmases.

#sharethelove

Ursula’s cake is a lighter fruit cake, which can be baked right up until before Christmas as there is no need to feed the cake, unless you wanted too! I have also slightly altered the ingredients as me and the family don’t like mixed peel so I like to add chopped stem ginger into the mix. The recipe is also in pounds and oz. This is no problem weighing ingredients with digital scales but makes it interesting when trying to buy my ingredients.

I love the boy helping me in the kitchen as I remember helping my Nan who was the real baker of the family. It’s great to #ShareTheLove at Christmas even if the most I can get the boy doing is weighing the ingredients and having a wishing stir. Ok so he also enjoyed licking the spoon and declared the mix a success.

Whitworths are encouraging family’s to #ShareTheLove with the best ingredients and a beautiful story book of family and the true meaning of Christmas. Visit the website  and download this sweet tale, and their cake recipe from the story. Sometimes its good to have time to spend making and baking gifts that you can share with family and friends. I love traditions and maybe one day the boy will #ShareTheLove with his family and have a slice of cake that will remind him of his childhood Christmases too.

Disclaimer we were sent a selection or Whitworths ingredients so that we could bake our cake and share our story with you.

Star Wars Timeline – Review

Star Wars Timeline is an easy to learn game like the other Timeline games. Players place their dealt cards in the order the scenes appeared in the films. Sounds easy? Well it proved more difficult than we first thought.

Star Wars timeline is available from stores and online and comes in two editions. The first covers the original three star wars films (episode IV, V and VI) and the second edition the prequel of films (I, II, III). Each Tin contains 110 cards and are suited for ages 8+. 2-8 players and RRP £13.99.

Star Wars Timeline is already a favourite game and will make a great gift for any Star Wars fan. The boy was excited as he stood a real chance of beating Dad Dragon. The question would be how much could he remember? The answer was more than his Dad! Each of the cards comes with a scene or quote from the film and then these are numbered on the reverse so that you can check where in the sequence they appear.

There are plenty of easily recognizable scenes like the incident in the trash compactor or the first sighting of the death star. Putting them in order though caused much discussion in the family. It isn’t until you turn over the car that you can see which of the films your quote appears so even remembering which film was fun. Once we had completed a few games we discovered that the boy was indeed very good at remembering exactly where in a film a scene or character first appeared.

Star Wars Timeline is my whole families favourite card game for 2016, and is the perfect game for us to take with us and play with family over the holidays. My only disappointment is that the Star Wars edition of timeline cannot be played with any of the history editions. This I guess was to be expected with a fictional story, but somehow might have been fun!. Each Star Wars Timeline edition can be played on its own or mixed up with the other edition to play as a huge timeline game. This could be played with more players and I think will be a fun game to play with all the boys nephews.

Would you like a chance to try the Star Wars Timeline games? My Amazon affiliate links are below or enter my giveaway on gleam.

 

Star Wars Timeline

Disclaimer we were sent these games in return for an honest review, our words have not been altered.

Terms & Conditions:

The giveaway is open to the UK only

  • It is mandatory to leave a comment in the post comment section answering the question specified. Other tasks completed will gain additional entries. The winner will be checked to make sure they have both left a comment and completed the task for the winning entry.
  • Winner will be drawn randomly after the competition closes at 23:59 on Monday 2nd January 2017
  • The winner will be sent an  e-mail to the e-mail address left at time of entry. The winner will need to reply to the e-mail within 7 days of the notification. Every effort will be made to contact the winner, but if no response is made within the 7 days a new winner will be chosen.
  • The prize details are stated at the top of the giveaway, and may be subject to change if they become unavailable.
  • The prize will be posted by the promoter, unfortunately I cannot be held responsible or replace missing parcels. Please contact me if there is a problem.
  • Please allow 28 days from notification for your prize to be sent out.
  • This competition is listed at: Win competitions at ThePrizeFinder.com and SuperLucky
SuperLucky Blog Giveaway Linky