Enjoy Water Challenge

We have been challenged by Robinsons and BritMums to find ways to keep hydrated as a family and enjoy water. With two out of three parents saying they don’t know how much water their children should be drinking each day. I don’t feel alone in saying that this challenge needed to start with me!

The boy drinks lots of water when he does sports. Getting him to enjoy water on other days it is like asking him to chop a leg off. I bought him a large one litre sports bottle which he takes to school and day trips. Its huge and takes up so much room in his bag. It’s great for his fencing competitions, when he needs to keep hydrated, not so good on a day out.

enjoy water

Robinsons have launched the “Enjoy Drinking More Water” campaign to help families like ours enjoy water. With a range of Squash’d flavours they hope to encourage families to fruit up their water. This idea has proved a hit with the boy who loves these little squeezy bottles.They have great fruity flavours too with Orange and peach, summer fruit and my favourite pink grapefruit. The best part is they have no added sugar, and we adults rather like them too!

So over the last couple of weeks we have been keeping a chart of our water intake. The boy has loved adding fruity stickers to his chart and trying to increase how much he drinks each day. Robinson’s Squash’d bottles have been taken to Dad dragons work, for him to try. I have been drinking more at home, and the boy loves watching the water change colour as he adds a dash of Squash’d. This has helped us to enjoy water and drink twice as much as we did before.

enjoy water more

I think the important part of drinking more is to get involved as a family. Don’t nag! that never goes down well. So having a bottle of water on a desk or next to a chair means it’s always to hand. Pop a bottle or Robinsons Squash’d in your bag to liven up the dull bottles of water, and finally get outside and have fun.

This post is an entry for BritMums #EnjoyMoreWater Challenge, sponsored by Robinsons

Fruit Frollipops from Fruit Bowl – Review

Fruit Frollipops are the latest fruit snack from Fruit Bowl. These are a strawberry rocket shaped lollypop treats with no added sugar and are one of your five a day. Fruit Frollipops come in multi packs of 5 with one treat in each individual packet.

This is the first time I have been disappointed with a Fruit bowl snack, as we have enjoyed many of the others, our favourites being the sea shapes. These Frollipops come on a plastic stick, something I don’t particularly like. The Fruit Frollipop itself was fruity and also sticky so was difficult to get out of the package. It had a nice fruity flavour of strawberry’s, but was gone very quickly leaving me with a fair amount of plastic rubbish.

fruit frollipop

Fruit Frollipops are better alternative to sweets or boiled lollypops, I think we will stick to the other Fruit Bowl snacks as a sweet treat as we enjoyed them much more than the Frollipops.

For more information on the Fruit bowl range visit their website, and Facebook page.

Disclaimer we were sent this product to try the opinion remains our own and has not been altered.

Little Cracker Juice Drinks – Review

Little Cracker’s Juice Drinks are great little cartons of juice and we have reviewed their juice cartons before. Now Little Cracker’s have two new flavours to add to the range. Orange & Lemon, and Apple & Raspberry.

Little Cracker Juice drinks are a perfect handy lunch boxed size drink perfect now that the boy is back at school, and we were excited to find out what the new flavours would taste like. Little Cracker drinks are 100% natural juice with a splash of water, and with no added sugar are great as one of your five a day.

little cracker's juice drinks

As before the boy was not keen on the pear and vanilla flavour, and we think this is a little of an acquired taste, but the new flavours were a hit. Especially the cherry and blackcurrant as these are two of the boys favourite fruit flavours. Little Cracker Juice drinks are perfect for lunch boxes, now that the kids are back to school and are available for RRP £1.99 for a pack of 3 cartons.

If you would like the chance to try out Little Cracker’s Juice Drinks for yourself then I have a nice little giveaway for you, simply complete the Gleam app below for your chance to win a pack of each flavour of Little Cracker’s Juice Drinks

Little Cracker Juice Drinks
 

Disclaimer, we were sent a selection of Little Cracker’s Juice drinks to try the opinions remain ours and have not been altered.

Terms & Conditions:
    • 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 by randomly after the close of the draw on Sunday 12th October 2014
  • The giveaway is only open to UK residents.
  • 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 no alternatives will be offered.
  • 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 alow 28 days from notification for your prize to be sent out.

     

 

 

 

Beautiful Flowers

When I was offered some beautiful flowers to brighten my day I could hardly say no, and when they arrived I was a little disappointed that they didn’t look too happy. I followed the instructions and popped the roses in hot water for an hour, and fed the lilies. Now look, a week later and they are blooming their little socks off!

Beautiful flowers

I love beautiful flowers especially if they are blooming in my garden, there is something really special about growing something from a really tiny seed, then seeing it full-grown. Sometimes I even pick a few flowers and pop them on my kitchen windowsill or dining table.

I have always enjoyed gardening, and had mixed results from growing from seed. There was the time I planted carrots and one popped up. Or the time I planted suede and 200 popped up! I did well with sweet corn in the first year, but no luck since. I have had the same luck with flowers, and it seems all or nothing. Sutton Seeds have a fantastic range of seeds to choose from. This year I couldn’t resist having a go at growing some new flowers. Yes The Soup Dragon is going to grow some Clangers, which are actually Dahlia’s. I can’t say I am confident, but I am sure it will not be the fault of the seeds. If I don’t have some amazing blooms to show for my efforts it wont be because of Suttons seeds as they have over 200 years of garden expertise.

suttons seeds

If like me you like healthy ready to go plants, without the hassle, I think their range of plug plants look like a great alternative. Suttons Seeds also sell plenty of soft fruit plants and even fruit trees which you can have sent direct to your home address with a reasonable postal charge and lots of special offers. We have some great fruit plants in the garden, including red and black currants, and I like to try out unusual plants too like my Pineberry’s (white strawberry’s).

This year I will be having one last try to grow from seed, then I think that buying my plants in will have to be a serious consideration! Wish me luck growing my Clangers, and why not have a look at Suttons Seeds website for some great garden plants for all gardening abilities!

Disclaimer I was sent some flowers in return for this post.

 

 

 

 

Baking with Fruit Bowl

We were excited to be sent some samples of Fruit Bowl snacks as I often buy these as a healthy snacks for the boy either as an after school treat, or for his lunch box. We have enjoyed the fruit sea and jungle shapes the most as these little fruity gems have an amazing flavour to them. The boy likes the peelers as these are a fun and different way to enjoy fruit.

fruit bowl fruit snacks

I decided to do something a little different and bake with Fruit Bowl Strawberry Flakes. You can find some interesting recipes here on their website, and I chose to try:

Fruit Flakes Muffins

makes about 12 standard sized muffins

  • 255g plain flour (if using self-raising flour, decrease baking powder to 1 tsp)
  • 15ml (3 tsp) baking powder
  • 2.5ml (0.5 tsp) salt
  • 85 – 100g fine granulated (varying depending on how sweet you like your muffins)
  • 1 egg
  • 240ml Milk
  • 90ml vegetable oil OR 85g butter, melted
  • 100 – 140g Fruit Flakes®, single flavour or mixed

Prepare muffin tins with liners or grease lightly. Preheat the oven to 190 – 200ºc, gas mark 5 – 6. Adjust as necessary for fan assisted ovens. In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, salt and sugar. In a separate bowl, beat the egg with a fork. Stir in milk followed by the oil/melted butter. Pour all of the liquid ingredients into the dry mixture. Stir until just combined, scraping the sides and bottom of the bowl as you stir. This mixing should only take about 30 seconds – too much mixing and your muffins will be ‘heavy’. The batter will be lumpy but no dry flour should be visible. Add the Fruit Flakes® and mix in using 1 or 2 strokes. Fill the muffin liners 3/4 full. Bake for 20 – 25 minutes until tops are lightly browned and spring back when pressed gently. Allow to cool for several minutes to make it easier to remove them from the tray. Best served warm.

baking with fruit bowl fruit flakes

The boy and I made these muffins together, and I think we may have over mixed our mixture as our muffins came out looking more like little fairy cakes. We had used five packets of Fruit Bowl Strawberry Fruit Flakes, but I think we could have used less as they were very fruity. The taste was lovely and the boy enjoyed having the muffins in his lunch box for school. I have never tried cooking with something like this but I guess it is no different really, to using dried fruit. Looking at other recipe’s on the Fruit Bowl site there are some very different uses for their snacks, from brownies and cookies to scones and caramel fingers!

strawberry fruit flake muffins

I love all the snacks from Fruit Bowl, and the boy has enjoyed finding some new flavours that he hadn’t tried before. He is not so fond of the School Bars for some reason, but I can guarantee if I put Sea Shapes in his lunch box that the packet will always come home empty.

Fruit bowl snacks are available from all the main supermarkets, although not all of them stock the full range. Have a look on the website to see which shops stock which snacks. With all the fruit bowl snacks they have no added sugar and are additive free, so I have no problems recommending them as a healthy alternative to chocolate and sweets, while also making up one of your 5 a day.

Disclaimer, we were sent a selection of snacks to try the opinions remain our own and have not been altered.

 

Potter and Rest, New online Garden Centre

March is the perfect time of year to start thinking about the garden. I have decided that this year, I will spend a little more time looking after the plants and especially the fruit and veg in my garden. I am looking forward to eating more produce and cooking up some tasty meals with my home-grown produce.

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Potter and Rest have offered to help me, and I need all the help I can get. As the first ‘true’ online garden centre Potter and Rest will be offering customers the largest selection of plants with the emphasis on British grown and a five-year plant guarantee.

 

our garden

There is a ‘no quibble’ guarantee on all products, and expert advice making, Potter and Rest different to the other websites currently on offer. With online advice from experts who can recommend the ideal plant for a dark corner, or even help you diagnosis a pest problem from photos. Potter and Rest can offer you assistance on all aspects of the garden.

 

potter and rest

There will be some products and plant collections not currently available in other garden centres in the real or virtual world. As well as sections for wild care, pet care, sow your own, grow your own, outdoor plants, houseplants, plant care, equipment and tools, outdoor living and gifts.

The e-garden centre hopes to appeal to all levels of gardeners from complete novices to keen amateurs and on to expert gardeners. So if like me you are somewhere in the middle, but still need the reassurance of a little expert advice from time to time, then Potter and Rest are here to help.

Join me in wishing Potter and Rest a great start to 2014 when they launch, and join me and the boy in growing fruit and veg for our dinner and pudding plates!

Photos mine, and some courtesy of potter and rest