Friday, 15 May 2015

The boys are running for fun, but for a reason

We are taking part in the Color Run this year. We wanted to do it last year but didn't get our applications in time.

Some of you may be wondering what the Color Run is, it is a 5km run where every 1km a coloured powdered dye is thrown over you.  So whilst you start the race in white, you finish the 5km covered in various bright colours.

My boys are young (6 years and 3 years old). They are so excited to be taking part. They have been practising running.  Joshua (my 6 year old) even beat me on the treadmill recently, running for 30mins...whilst I only managed 27 mins!.  (note to self, tell everyone I did that on purpose!)


These little fellas managed 2.95miles!
Our Color Run outfits!



Joshua ran for 30 mins! Run Forest!

Here are a few pictures of the boys practising, I'm so proud of them.  We are even fundraising for a local charity. So, if you think they are doing an amazing thing, please dig deep and sponsor them and their little feet!

https://www.justgiving.com/Joshua-Zain5kmcolorun

Forget ironing - trying steaming, it's great

When you are a busy, ironing is the most mundane and time consuming exercise.

I generally pile my ironing up to do in one go, so my Sunday evenings are spent ironing (for about 2 long hours!).  I don't enjoy it but we have to make sure the kids have their ironed school uniforms!.

Dragging the ironing board out, unravelling the iron cord, setting the whole area up. It's all a drag. I'm getting depressed just thinking about it!  But, I got to try out the handy little Elite Travel Steamer from Amazon. This is a powerful little unit and it really put a smile on my face.


The steamer is a portable travel steamer and works within 60 seconds. This steamer works on all fabrics.  Just hold it upright and the steam removes your creases on both sides of your garment. 

Steamer and travel bag

I was using it to iron my husbands shirts (which I NEVER iron as they take too long!).  I ironed the first shirt, and thought, this can't be right, it took me about 1 minute to iron his shirt. This is mainly because the steam works directly on the creases but also, you don't have to turn the shirt over to work on the reverse, saving you time and effort!

I loved the steamer, and I think my husband loves it even more as I've ironed 3 of his shirts for next week already!  He is a happy man!

I might throw my ironing board away too.  I've already decided to take this on holiday with us.  It's the perfect size and comes with a little travel bag.

I am a big fan of this little steamer.  For such a small product, it has great results, it's steaming great! :)


Disclaimer: I was sent this product to produce an honest review.  All opinions and views are my own


Wednesday, 6 May 2015

Mixing up our playtime with Magic Squares

Who doesn't love playtimes? That's right, no one!

We love our play times and play dates. Theses are the little precious moments in the day where we can all be a little carefree and have some fun.

Our play dates can consist of playing family games indoors when the weather is bad or playing in the garden when we get those even more precious sunny days! Either way, are play dates involve lots of laughing, messing about and probably a few tickle sessions thrown in!

We like mixing up our play dates, nothing is ever normal in our house. E.g indoor wheelbarrow races, wheelbarrow sessions up the stairs (yes, don't ask me why I allow it!), indoor basketball etc.  You can see we like to be as crazy inside as we are outside.

When we were asked to take up the #MagicSquaresPlaydates challenge by Petits Filous, we thought, who better to demonstrate how to mix it up than our crazy kids!

Strawberry & Vanilla (left)
Raspberry & Vanilla (right)

Firstly, let me tell you about the Petits Filous new Magic Square range. These are the  new flavoured yogurt by the No.1 kids yogurt and fromage frais brand.*

This new range is available in two flavours, strawberry & vanilla and raspberry & vanilla.  Yes, two flavours in one pot.  You may have seen the dessert pots they already have and the traditional individual pots, these seem to be a blend of the two concepts.


 
 The packaging gives you an indication of what you may see inside the pot. The criss-cross design illustrates the two different flavours within each pot (vanilla being the yellow flavour and red being the strawberry/raspberry flavour).

Once opened, you can see the yogurt looks very similar to the traditional petits filous. So children won't be discouraged to eat it.  Although, when I tried one of the pots I was pleasantly surprised at how tasty it was.  It really felt like an adult dessert.  Smooth and creamy, with a hint of a mousse like feel to it.  Basically, it didn't taste like a normal yogurt. I'm not sure whether that was to do with the actually recipe or maybe it was because of the combination of the two flavours.  It also didn't dry out the mouth like other yogurts or fromage frais.

My children were thrilled when they saw the pots.  Their eyes lit up, and there were plenty of gasps when the lids where taken off. As I mentioned, we like to mix things up and we happened to be out on the trampoline whilst there were a few good hours of sunshine.  We were actually going to play with the water pistols whilst jumping on the trampoline (it's a game where if they don't do the right sequence of jumps, turns and bounces they get sprayed by the water pistol!) It's a hoot!


But, as we had the yogurts to taste we decided to get the Magic Squares out whilst they were on the trampoline. They were so excited.  The game was to jump on the trampoline whilst trying to eat the Magic Squares.  I was envisaging it to get super messy, but the yogurt must have been so tasty as they didn't waste a drop of it whilst bouncing!

 

The children loved the pots.  The shape is great as it means they can get a grip properly without dropping any (which is great if they are jumping on the trampoline (!) ).

They loved the taste, even my youngest who generally doesn't eat that much yogurt, polished the whole pot off!

I personally, I think the pots could be a little but smaller for kids and maybe have a larger size for adults! (or can grown ups eat two children's pots?!)

The pots are great, and have the usual goodness of Petits Filous and are a winner in our household, with the children as well as the adults!

They are in all supermarkets and are a great price. RRP £2 for 4 pots, but at the moment there are offers in most large supermarkets.



“This post is an entry for BritMums #MagicSquaresPlaydates Linky Challenge, sponsored by Petits Filous.”

Sunday, 12 April 2015

Cake always makes you feel better

The Easter holidays are always an egg-citing time for us.  Not only do we have two weeks of holiday fun to look forward to but the kids get to do an Easter egg hunt and also it is my firstborn's, Joshua's, birthday!

This year my eldest turned 6.  It was actually going to be a special birthday as he had finished school on Friday.  He had an operation scheduled for Tuesday 31st March and then on Saturday 4th April was his birthday.  It was going to be a double birthday celebration at our house as it was Joshua's favourite's Uncle's 50th birthday the following day so there was a double birthday party at ours.



An operation for one of your children is always a scary thought.  I was very worried, and so was he.  But he coped with it really well.  He was such a trooper.  He was back to himself by the following day, Wednesday, and looking forward to the party which we had planned on Saturday.  He did say he was worried about the operation only because he wanted it to be over quickly so he could look forward to his birthday party and eat his Mr Kipling cakes which we had been sent.

Then, disaster struck!  Joshua came down with chickenpox on Thursday morning.  He was covered in them. Poor bubba. Which, then meant we had to cancel his birthday party.  OH No!!

He was devastated. Missing out on all that fun.  We had planned so many games and as it was a joint party (for Joshua and his Uncle) we had to cancel TWO parties! Joshua was quite upset, but he dealt with it like a true trooper. 

He had started to itch quite a lot.  For a 6 year old he had a lot to deal with (operations, chickenpox, party being cancelled).  But, on top of that he had also given up chocolate for Lent, and he had nearly done the whole period without any chocolate.  But, when his itching had started he asked if he could have a chocolate treat and he was eyeing up the Mr Kipling cakes that had been delivered.

Look at the smiles! A way to a boys heart is certainly through his stomach!

I couldn't resist and tore the packets open. Joshua was delighted and this was the first time I had seen him smile for at least 24 hours.

Cake certainly makes life a lot better. #betterwithcake

Even though we had so much to look forward to over the Easter Holidays, which we had to cancel (Joshua's chickenpox have finally gone down....in time for school tomorrow!), the cake was the one thing that put a smile on my boys face.

He needed that treat. 
He deserved that treat. 
And he savoured that treat!



This post is an entry for #betterwithcake Linky Challenge (http://bit.ly/betterwithcake), sponsored by Mr Kipling. Learn more at https://www.facebook.com/mrkiplingcakes

Thursday, 19 March 2015

Lego Mixels - mixed up fun! - review

We are all love Lego.  The imaginative coloured blocks which give our children hours of fun. The creations my children have put together have amazed me and I see the joy on their faces when their ideas literally come to life.

Lego is an institution.  We are used to the look and feel of it. But, have you see the Mixels range?  Mixels are now on their 4th series and these quirky little packets of fun are the next generation of Lego.

Image result for lego mixels series 4 

Mixels allow you (and the kids!) to get even more creative.

There are three tribes: Orbitons, Infernites and Glowkies.  Each tribe has three different characters with their own special powers and specific builds.  When all three characters of each tribe are put together, they then become a Max Mixel (a giant mega Mixel who has all their combined powers).


Image result for lego mega mixels series 4
Combine the characters to create a Mega Mixel!
We were lucky to try out some of the Mixel range.  When I saw the packets, they were quirky little creatures, tempting you to open the packet and start building. Lego have really got the design right with the packaging and imagery. I love the little devils!

The kids shrieked when they saw the packets.  They were so excited.

The kids favourite was this Vampos Glow in the Dark Mixel






The kids got right into making the each character. Within each packet, there was an a comprehensive instruction booklet.  Easily understood by my 5 year old.

They boys only needed a helping hand a couple of times, but they mostly built the characters by themselves.






Once the glow in the dark Mixel was ready they ran into the cupboard to see how it glowed in the dark.  They had so much fun with it.  That's a lovely dimension to the character.








There are around 30 + pieces to put together in each packet.

Just enough to keep the little ones from not losing interest (sometimes they want them built really quickly).


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
You can see me in the background still trying to create a Mixel whilst the kids finished theirs (yes....they beat me!)
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

The boys loved putting the Mixels together, especially the glow in the dark Mixels. They were their favourites. Series 4 Mixels are great fun. And when they are combined to become a Mega Mixel, gives the characters an additional benefit.

The RRP is £3.00 for each packet.  Hours of fun for a little pocket money. These would also make great party bags fillers or prizes during party games. AND suitable for boys and girls!


Disclaimer: I was sent these products to give an honest review. All ideas and opinions expressed are my own.
 
 
 
 

Monday, 16 March 2015

HOME - the latest movie from DreamWorks

We absolutely love going to the movies. And we were lucky enough to attend the UK movie premier of HOME, the new movie from DreamWorks, at Leicester Square.

Image result for dreamworks home

Now, we knew this movie was going to be amazing as DreamWorks are the creators behind hit movies such as How to Train Your Dragon and The Croods.

Image result for dreamworks home

HOME is a great, fun movie about the relationship between an alien and a young girl. The story centres around a hapless alien, called Oh, and his race (the Boov) and an adventurous girl called Tip. They meet when The Boov invade Earth and relocate the human race to another area, but Tip and her loyal cat, called Pig, get left behind. The pair learn from each other and together they discover the true meaning of the word HOME.

The story is wonderful, the animation is brilliant and there were plenty of laughs and giggles (I even had a little tear in my eye at one point).

I am not going to spoil it for you and tell you all the action that happens. It really is a brilliant family movie. It will be one that will be watched and loved for many years. Especially now that there are a range of toys available which really bring the movie to life.

Here's the trailer to whet your appetite!  The movie is on general release from 20th March 2015.  Go to the cinema and see it, then go HOME!

To see some of the HOME toy range click here.

Disclaimer: we attended the movie to give an honest review. All opinions and views expressed are my own.

HOME - DreamWorks movie toy ranges

HOME, the new movie by DreamWorks is an amazing new animated movie. We got to see it at a premier this weekend and I can honestly say it was loads of fun. See my HOME movie post here.

Image result for home movie



To bring the movie to life, Flair, have brought out a range of toys celebrate this magical movie. The collection includes all the main characters in the movie, such as Oh and Tip in a selection of plush toys, dancing toys, dolls and pocket money collectibles.

We were given a few to review and I can honestly say that the kids loved them all. There isn't one which was overlooked and not played with.

HOME - mood ears 

I'll start with the Boov ears. The Boov are the race of aliens who take over Earth and who Oh, the hapless main character is an outcast from. The Boov ears let you become part of the race. The ears are bendable to reflect each mood. You can choose which mood you want to be: happy, excited silly, angry, frightened, grumpy, bashful, sad, loving, naughty, shocked, joyful, cool, fascinated and doubtful. You can then bend and twist the ears to correspond to that mood.
 
The children loved this as they woke up in the morning demanding to wear the ears, even whilst brushing their teeth! They would decide what mood they wanted to be and put the ears on. The packaging comes with a guide of all the moods and the ears shapes. We have this pinned to,our fridge so that the kids can freely choose what they want.



The Boov ears are a great price at RRO £3.99 and they come in a collection of colours.

HOME - animated dancing plush Oh


One of the main toys was the dancing, talking Oh. This is a soft, cuddly toy which features three songs from the movie and four popular phrases from the movie. When you switch Oh on you can see him shuffle around the floor and waves his arms along to the music, just like the film!

This is a great, when switched off my little one likes to cuddle him and when he is switched on and dancing he loves to watch his moves.



The dancing plush is RRP £29.99.

HOME - The Shusher Wand

 19148 Captain Smeks Shusher Wand open
 
The Shusher Wand is a great role play toy as it is the same one Captain Smek uses to 'Shush' his fellow Boov. When you press the button you will hear realistic sound effects and real phrases from the movie. Inside the top is a hidden Smek which you can see when you press the button.  My boys have been using it to 'shush' me all the time!  (I may need to hide this so I can finish a sentence!)
 
The Shusher wand is RRP £9.99
 
HOME - Mood Bubbles
 
 
 
These great little pocket money treats are ideal for role play and imaginative play.  There are 18 to collect and are come with different moods, so lots to choose from.
 
Each mini figure comes in a gold standing dish and is then encased in a plastic orb (similar to the one in the movie).
 
Mood Bubbles RRP £2.49
 
 
The orange and purple Oh's are the colour changing figures
These are great!  They are robust and change colour in response to heat and touch. If you rub the figure it changes colour and returns back to the original colour when cooling down.
 
My kids love to have these in the bath and watch it instantly change colour.  They fill the sink up with cold water to change it back and then drop it back in the bath with them.  Hours of fun!
 
Colour changing figures RRP £7.99
 

The range from Flair for the Home movie is quite extensive.  There are plenty of toys to choose from to suit all budgets and genders.  Go on take one 'Home'!


Disclaimer:  I was sent these products to provide a review. All opinions and views expressed are all my own.