Mister B’s crafty sailing boat!

At Mister B’s art group at the local museum this week the theme was boats.  We walked around the exhibition displaying various ships and vessels from years gone by and I have to say Mister B loved it.  He was pointing out all the flags and other parts of the ships he recognised and even found a huge boat that he decided was a pirate ship!!

Boat museum craft kids sticking

We then went back to the crafty room to make a boat picture make up of coloured paper stuck on to a boat outline.  He thoroughly loved getting his fingers mucky with the glue stick and pressing down the paper shapes.  And then all the children in the group proudly walked around the ground floor of the museum showing off their boats – so cute!!.  I’m so pleased that Mister B’s crafty side is coming out as he wasn’t so keen at first unlike his big sister who is the crafting queen of the house!!

A string of domestic disasters!!

We have had a series of domestic disasters throughout November and December from dropping my mobile phone down the toilet resulting in having to purchase a new one, the vacuum cleaner dying – although I am quite liking the new posh cyclone action one, then the oven dying.  I held off purchasing a new oven thinking I’d look around for a good offer, then my husband decided to fall of his bicycle – resulting in a broken elbow.  I quite enjoyed the life of ready cooked microwave meals for a while (particularly the M&S Butternut squash risotto) and saved on a lot of time spent in the kitchen.  But then I thought I really must get a new oven before Christmas!!

After buying and installing a new oven just a week before Xmas, the very next day I went to use the microwave and you guessed it, it died!!!  So I nipped out to Comet and picked one up in the sales.  And all the while we noticed that our toilet was taking longer to clear of water than usual.

Could any more go wrong I asked myself?  A couple of days later we realised that the toilet really was blocked and had to call someone out on a Sunday of all days to unblock the drains in the garden – another £120 out of pocket!!

Just a couple of days before Christmas, I ventured up into the loft to bring down the presents to wrap – but arghhh!! – to my horror I discovered we have some new residents in our loft who have eaten an entire box of Lindt chocolate golf balls (sorry brother) and to my husbands total and utter dismay – 3 packs of Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups that were due to appear in his stocking from Santa – yep you guessed it – MICE have invaded our loft space!!!!!!!!!!

Well you can imagine my shock, disgust and despair as I carefully delved my way through chewed up bits of carrier bags to pick out other presents that had been in the same bags as the chocolate.

So finally Christmas arrived and although hectic it was fun, Miss M enjoyed lots of time outdoors at the park on her new bike – although on a big ride out with daddy she got a puncture!!

With the New Year here, I mistakenly thought we’d be off to a fresh start and nothing more could go wrong but on 2nd January the washing machine dials decided to turn non stop and the water continuously filled and after some deliberation over whether it was worth repairing, I ended up ordering a new washing machine online!!

This week my darling cat Twinkle was due her annual booster injections.  Husband took her whilst I was at work but unfortunately I got the dreaded text to say that the vet had noticed she had a particularly fast heart rate and needed to do some blood tests.  That evening we got the results that she has a thyroid problem and needed medication.  We have a further appointment in 3 weeks to see how things are but I am fully aware that she is getting old and hope she gets over this and gives us a few more years worth of cuddles. xx


Annabel Karmel Fuss Pots – Review

When I was offered the opportunity by Mummy News to try the new range of microwaveable ready meals, Fuss Pots for 4-12 year olds by Annabel Karmel, I jumped at the chance.  I have a 4 yr old daughter who although is quite a good eater, can be fussy with different and new flavours, especially the various world cuisine dishes being offered by Annabel Karmel, so this seemed like the ideal opportunity to see how well received they would be along with enjoying the convenience of ready meals.

fusspot_spagbolfusspot_nasigorengfusspot_kormalFuss pots

The pots are a really handy easy to hold size with monster designs on the packaging that instantly appealed to Miss M, and once she spotted the dotted lines on the inside she couldn’t wait to cut the various body parts out!!

The first meal we tried was the Spaghetti Bolognese, a favourite of Miss M’s, so I was hoping this would go down well.  The portion size is very generous and really a little bit too much for Miss M who is almost 5 yrs old, so I divided up the meal between Miss M and her 2 yr old brother Mister B to see how well each of them liked it.  It was also ultra convenient being only a few minutes in the microwave but I had no hesitation in using this for a quick meal knowing that there are lots of hidden vegetables within each portion.

The pair of them sat there and gobbled up their bowls of spaghetti Bolognese without any hesitation and when I asked Miss M for her verdict, the first word she said was “yummy”.

Fuss Pots

The next night we tried the Indian Chicken Korma.  I wasn’t sure how this would be received as it’s not  dish we would normally have at home but to my surprise it was eaten up with no fuss at all.  Mister B just tucked in with no complaints – although he does have curries at nursery.  Miss M on the other hand did show a sceptical face after her first mouthful as she hadn’t known what to expect but then happily finished the rest.

Finally we tried Indonesian Chicken & Rice Nasi Goreng.  Being a rice dish, both did eat it quite well although I get the feeling this was their least favourite of the three meals we tried.

I think overall the Fuss Pot range by Annabel Karmel went down really well with my two children and I think it’s a great way to give them a healthy, mild taste of international cuisine.  The convenience of the ready meals is really handy and they microwave in just a few minutes making them great for evenings where time is short or particularly busy.

The other fun factor with the pots, is that when you finished you can wash them out and use them to grow seeds in.  And on the back of the cardboard packaging are fun eyes, mouths and feet to cut out and stick on the pots.  Miss M really enjoyed cutting and sticking to produce her monster pots and we are now looking forward to growing some cress in them.

We loved trying the Annabel Karmel Fuss Pots and would definitely recommend them.

Available to purchase from Sainsbury’s RRP £2.90

For more information visit http://www.annabelkarmel.com

All reviews are my own and my family’s opinions. We are not paid for reviews although we do receive the product to try out and enable us to write the review.

A very busy but fun Xmas & New Year!!

Wow – it feels like so long since I blogged, I took an unintended long break over the festive period due to being just so busy!!  The run up to Christmas was crazy with so much going on and so many things to do and Miss M and I both felt a little poorly during the week before.

It was so exciting to see Miss M in her first school nativity, where she chose to play a shepherd.  I was slightly annoyed though when the show started and proud Mister B couldn’t help himself and called out to his big sister upon seeing her a number of times and the mother sitting in front of me turned round and told me to leave unless he kept quiet!!

NativityMy parents arrived a few days before Xmas which was nice and gave me some time to wrap presents – how many? – I wish I had counted but my arms were aching and fingers sore by the time they were all done.  But the fireplace didn’t disappoint on Christmas morning when Santa had done his deliveries.  Miss M and Mister B were so excited and didn’t know where to begin.

We had a lovely Christmas day although I have to say by far the most exhausting for me – I don’t think I got to sit down other than to eat Christmas dinner!!

XmasAfter Christmas was over we had a few days to relax before preparing for Miss M’s birthday party on New Year’s Eve.  I cheated this year and decided to hold it at the local leisure centre with a bouncy castle and despite costing double the amount that I spent on a party last year for the same number of children I have to say I was slightly disappointed with the overall way it ran and will definitely go back to doing a party myself again next year.  I also cheated on the birthday cake!!!  The first year I haven’t made my children a homemade cake but I did make it up slightly by baking some yummy chocolate cupcakes, iced in buttercream and finished with a personalised pink M&M!!

BirthdayOn New Year’s Day my gorgeous little Miss M officially became 5 years old!!  Where have the last five years gone?  We had a lovely day, which started sunny so ventured down to the park on Miss M’s new bike and Mister B’s new scooter.  We then enjoyed a birthday lunch with family before opening birthday presents and relaxing for the rest of the day.

NYDSo although busy, we have had some lovely family times over the last few weeks and I look forward to see what 2013 brings us!!

Sensational Sequins Kittens by Galt Toys – Review

We were really pleased to try the Sensational Sequins Kittens craft kit by Galt Toys for the Izziwizzi Kids Play Fest.  It looked shiny, sparkly and like a lovely craft kit for girls.  Miss M is also a cat lover and was thrilled when I showed her the box and couldn’t wait to get stuck in.

SequinsThe Kit contains two different pictures each covered in a paper layer which you can peel off in sections to reveal a sticky surface on which to place the sequins.  There are colour guided circles on which to stick the matching colour sequins, which you apply using a wax crayon, which strangely enough works perfectly at picking up each sequin and allowing you to place it on the picture.

Sequins pic

Included are five bags of various coloured sequins which I laid out on a tray for Miss M to use.  She then proceeded without any assistance to cover the picture with the appropriately coloured sequins – in fact mummy wasn’t even allowed to try!!

I thought this made a lovely craft activity with each picture keeping Miss M occupied for about half an hour.  The result is a lovely shiny picture that would look great on a bedroom wall.

With Miss M only just age 5, I did feel that she was more than capable of this kit although it does suggest being suitable for ages 6+.  I do feel that even a child of 4 could do this with supervision.

We loved this kit and would highly recommend it, especially at the very reasonable price of £5.99 – this would make a great present for friends parties!!

Please watch our video review for izziwizzi kids below:

All reviews are my own and my family’s opinions. We are not paid for reviews although we do receive the product to try out and enable us to write the review.

First Sewing by Galt Toys – Review

When we received the First Sewing kit by Galt Toys for the Izziwizzi Kids Play Fest, Miss M was very excited and keen to have a go.  She’s watched me sew and mend various holes in clothes etc and has always asked for a go, so this was the perfect starter kit to let her experience sewing for herself.

I was impressed with the contents of the Galt Toys sewing box which contained five individually packed kits to make, a butterfly bag, neck purse, picture frame, notepad cover and pencil case.  Each kit contained pre-cut foam pieces and cord to sew with along with 2 plastic needles.  There is also a sheet of stick on gems to decorate the finished designs and  a notepad and pencils to add to the notepad holder.

The first project Miss M wanted to do was the butterfly bag.  As Miss M is new to sewing I started her off and also did the more awkward parts like sewing the butterfly onto the centre, but Miss M was very keen and was desperate to finish the rest herself.  I kept an eye on what she was doing and guided her to the correct holes to put the needle through but on the whole she managed the projects very well herself.

A really nice finishing touch to each kit is adding the sparkly stick on gems which all little girls love.  Miss M was really proud of her finished projects and used the bag to carry a couple of the other items round in.

I think this is a really lovely first craft set and a great introduction to sewing.  The foam shapes are really bright and colourful and I think the selection of different kits to make are well thought out.  The set is aimed at ages 5+ which Miss M just is and I think this is perfect to her with a little supervision to guide her along.  The Galt Toys First Sewing kit retails at £7.99 which I think is excellent value for the contents and the craft value to the child.  This would make a great birthday present for any little girl and I would definitely recommend.

Please watch our video review for izziwizzi kids below:

All reviews are my own and my family’s opinions. We are not paid for reviews although we do receive the product to try out and enable us to write the review.