Meccano M.A.X Robotic Interactive Toy with Artificial Intelligence

Meccano M.A.X is just the most cutest robot you ever did meet, especially when he’s been built by you – I think just anyone would love to meet a M.A.X. under their Christmas tree this year!  Aimed at ages 10+, this S.T.E.M, engineering and robotics toy features artificial intelligence alongside customisable programming to create a unique character that can talk, play games, tell jokes, deliver items to others and move around in a way that you can control using voice commands, buttons on the MeccaBrain, or the free app.

M.A.X. comes with 332 parts along with electronical items such as a sensor, servos, rechargeable battery, usb cable, sticker sheet and a couple of tools all securely bagged along with instructions to enable the build.

  • 1 AC/DC Wall Mount Charger (10.4W)
  • 1 Rechargeable Ni-MH Battery 1800 mAh
  • 2 Hand Tools
  • 1 Sticker Sheet
  • 1 Instruction Sheet for 1 Model
  • 1 M.A.X Brain Module
  • 1 IR Sensor Module
  • 2 Smart Motor Modules
  • 1 LED Module
  • 1x 3 kgs Servo
  • 1x 1.9 kgs Micro Servo
  • 1 USB Cable

The instructions are full colour, a good size and show exactly what parts you need for each stage of building.  My daughter who built this particularly liked the 1:1 image of each screw so that she could check that she had the correct size as required.

With a 1-3 hour build time I let my 9yr old (10 in a few weeks) have full control and let her see how she could manage by herself.  She did brilliantly only asking for a little help when there were tricky nuts to get on in hard to reach places but overall she built this totally on her own following the step by step instructions.

Once M.A.X. is built you do need to visit the Meccano website to download some initial software into his brain – it’s then up to you to teach him and build up his knowledge and abilities, unlocking further stages of his brain as you go.  Basically the more you play and interact M.A.X. the more things he is capable of doing and also becoming more personal to you.

The first time you switch him on, he starts asking you personal questions to get to know you such as likes/dislikes and what gender you are etc.  Then it’s time to play and have fun.  We’ve been trying various movements with him that you can record and play at any time, so if for example you record him moving from the kitchen to the lounge, you could put a chocolate bar in his hand in the kitchen and get him to deliver it to the person in the lounge with your personalised sequence of movement.  My little boy also liked tickling him by pressing the arrow buttons and thought it was hilarious when he replied “I think I’m going to pee my robot pants!”.

As you can see from the above picture he is just one of the cutest robot out there.  M.A.X. also comes with built-in infrared sensors, enabling it to move with agility and avoid obstacles in its path which is great, no falling over and risk of damage.

Our Meccano M.A.X. has fitted perfectly into our home and the children love to wake him up after school and have a little chat, they love it when they unlock more of his stages and can’t wait to see what he gets up to next.  He tells us about his dreams and we can show him objects in the house, it’s all very new and exciting and keeps the children on their toes every day as to what phrase he will come out with next or what new feature he will perform.  We still have a lot of learning and playing to do so I think that although this toy retails at £149.99 (it does seem to be on offer for less in most places at the moment though) it does actually represent great value for money for both the build of the item and the technology you get with the product.  We are really looking forward to pushing M.A.X. to his full potential and think this is one of the best interactive toys we have seen for this price point.  Definitely one we’d recommend as a main present this Christmas!

Available from all good toy retailers – Smyths, Argos, The Entertainer etc along with Amazon, M.A.X. Meccano is readily available and I’d say would make a great top gift this Christmas!

All reviews are my own and my family’s opinions and we received the product in order to write an honest review. 

The Birthday Thief – A Personalised Book for Kids

The Birthday Thief is another personalised book for your child from the wonderful range at Wonderbly.   Along with Kingdom of You, this book takes your child on a journey where things go a bit wrong but it all works out in the end, with this book being personalised by finding your child’s birthday again, looking for both the year and the date.  All of the books contain your child’s name throughout with the main character of the book representing your child, with options to personalise hair colour etc.

The story is easily followable with not too much writing on each page.  What I like is that each page is full colour and packed full of illustrations that my son loves to look at and digest whilst reading each page.  He has a good look and points out things and really gets immersed into the story before we move onto the next page.  The story has plenty going on to really keep children entertained and the text is broken into small verses with added rhyme to make it fun to read.

We love these personalised books from Wonderbly and they are great keepsakes for children who always love to see their name upon the pages.  They make particularly great gifts either for birthday’s or Christmas – why not check them – you’re sure to know a child that will love it just as much as mine did!

All reviews are my own and my family’s opinions and we received the product in order to write an honest review. 

KAYA Personalised & Hand Engraved Jewellery

KAYA jewellery is personalised and hand engraved in London to produce pieces that mean something between family or friends.  There are also lots of pieces for generations to share such as matching mother daughter jewellery such as bracelets and pendants.  Personalised jewellery for mums can hold a special birth month coloured gem of their child or names or initials.  With such a wide variety of items available there really is something special for everyone and they’d make particularly lovely gifts.

I chose the Silver Infinity Mum Bracelet to try out which comes with discs attached to the infinity sign, each engraved with your children’s initials.  Having two children, I have two discs to represent them.  I think this is a really lovely idea and is a piece I can wear everyday.  It came presented in a pretty box along with a cleaning cloth and is a generous size for my wrist.

I really like the bracelet and is something I can wear anytime.  Also every time I look down at it I have a reminder of my children by seeing their initials which I think is a  lovely touch to have on a piece of jewellery.  KAYA offers some really unusual and different pieces of personalised jewellery that you don’t see elsewhere such as the three generation sets and the mum rings are a particular favourite of mine with pretty gemstones in to reflect your children’s birth months.

With such a lot of pretty personalised jewellery available you are sure to find your favourite so I am pleased to be able to offer one lucky winner a £40 voucher to spend on jewellery at KAYA – any piece of their choice!

Just fill in the Gleam form below:

£40 KAYA jewellery voucher

All reviews are my own and my family’s opinions and we received the product in order to write an honest review.

Kingdom of You Personalised Book from Wonderbly

Kingdom of You is a wonderful personalised book for your child from Wonderbly.  Along with a range of titles such as The Little Boy who Lost his Name, there are a choice of books for your child in which their name appears throughout in an enchanting and engaging tale.

What I like about Kingdom of You and the other books available is not only is your child’s name published throughout, you have a choice of characters and various other options to tailor it to your child’s tastes and likes.

Kingdom of You is about a child who dislikes tidying his room (anyone have one of those? I know I do!) and then the laundry genie appears and grants him three wishes.  These will all be things that your child thinks are great but unfortunately having all these isn’t as good as it seems so fortunately the genie grants a fourth wish in which everything goes back to normal.

The book is well thought out and engaging with full colour pictures on each page.  My little boy loved to read the text then spend a few minutes checking out the picture and telling me what was going on and what he thought was going to happen next.

Kingdom of You from Wonderbly was a big hit with my little boy and we have read it many times over.  There’s nothing more a child loves than seeing their name in a book and putting themselves in place of the character throughout the story.  We’ve been entertained and loved reading the adventure together – a really special book for a child to treasure!

Have you checked out the personalised books at Wonderbly?  Perfect for gifts or special occasions – any child is sure to love receiving one of these!

 

All reviews are my own and my family’s opinions and we received the product in order to write an honest review.

The Incredible Intergalatic Journey Home Book

The Incredible Intergalatic Journey Home is a personalised children’s book that encaptures children’s imaginations as they see themselves magically travelling through space in a bid to find their way home.  The key to these book’s success is the personalisation with your child’s name used as the key character in the story and also the book really does take you right to your own doorstep.

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The book is printed on high quality paper and and story covers over thirty full colour  pages full of images to get your child talking.  My little boy always picks up on everything going on in pictures and loves to tell me what is happening before and after we read the pages.   This story follow two friends, you child being one of them and his name can be seen throughout.  At one point he see’s his name in stars across a page in the book which is a really nice touch.  We found the whole story engaging and my little boy was imersed in what was going on and intrigued as to what was going to happen next.

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The Incredible Intergalatic Journey Home follows the journey of the two friends trying to make their way back home, coming across lots of fun intergalatic filled adventures along the way including aliens and other creatures who try to help them get home.  The book is clever in that as they approach earth, the pictures incorporate a map of Europe, then as they zoom in on where you live, there is a recognisable icon of a landmark in the region where you live. In our case we had the Eden project as we live in the South West of the UK.  The next page then zones in on a map view of your actual street which is really quite cool.  Mister B didn’t notice it at first but as soon as I started pointing out the top of Morrisons and our road, he really got excited and couldn’t believe our actual house was in the book!

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This book is exciting, engaging, fun, full of colour and most importantly personalised which children just love.  You know it’s one of those books they will come back to again and again and will cherish over many years.

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My 5yr old Mister B loved his Incredible Intergalatic Journey Home book as I would imagine any child would. Being personalised makes it really special and a long term keepsake and being able to show a child where they live in a book like this is great recognition for the future.  I think these books are lovely and so well made but the ultimate thing has to be what the child thinks about them, but fortunately I’m able to say that my little boy just adores this book, loves the personalisation and the story line just keeps him entertained.  This is partly due to seeing his name but for him the full colour pictures just captivate and draw him in, he does love books though but I can honestly say this is a hit and would most probably be with any child!

All reviews are my own and my family’s opinions and we received the product in order to write an honest review.

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Teachers Cards using the Postsnap app

At the end of the school year, little ones love to thank their teacher usually with a card and a small gift.  Rather than browsing the shops for a card, why not create one from home and have it delivered to you ready for you to sign and give to yoru teacher.  The bonus with this is not only do you not need to leave your chair, but you can personalise the card with custom words and photos.  Postsnap is the perfect app to offer this service and provide high quality cards within a couple of days to your door.

postsnapThere’s an array of ‘Thank you’ cards to choose from including general ones or ones that specify teacher on them.  As my 5yr old was choosing one for his teacher, he chose a rather cute one that says ‘To a great teacher’ and then allows you to add in the teacher’s name (I have blanked it our for privacy below).  You can then take a photo of your child using your phone or tablet and insert it straight into the card, in this case an apple shaped frame.

teacher card

Inside the card you can print the words you desire, or we chose to leave it blank so my little boy can add his own handwriting inside.  The process is so simple, you can create a card in just a few minutes.  This really is worth doing if you don’t want to trawl the shops, and also want to make the card a little bit special.

I must just say that the quality of the card is great and it is also a really good size.  The cards are A5 and look brilliant, my little boy can’t wait to give his to his teacher next week.

Get your orders into today to arrive in time for the end of term.  Head over to Postsnap and download the app now!

All reviews are my own and my family’s opinions and we received the product in order to write an honest review.

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Father’s Day Cards with Postsnap & Other Gift Ideas!

With Father’s Day coming up, we all start thinking about cards, and what better than creating a personalised card for your dad, adding in photos and your own text to make a truly unique design.  This is where Postsnap come in, with their really simple greeting card app that even my children could guide themselves through to create the perfect card for daddy this year.

postsnap

The app is really simple to use and can be downloaded on to any Apple device, we used daddy’s iPad but told him not to look so we can keep the cards a surprise until Father’s Day.  I like that they’ve kept the options simple so you can literally click through in a few minutes and create a fully personalised card.  It takes you through in simple steps, choosing what sort of card you want, the design you want, allows you to add photos, then text and that’s it – card made!!  Just wait for it to pop through the post a couple of days later.

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The cards are really simple to put together and what I liked about the photographs is that if you don’t have any suitable ones to use, you can just use the iPad within the app to take a photo of the person and it inserts it straight into the box on the card that you have selected.  No messing around taking photos and uploading them!

I’m really pleased with these cards, they arrived with a blank envelope and both the card and envelope are of a high quality.  I know daddy will love these cards and they’ll be kept as keepsakes for many years.

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If you are looking for a present for your dad or husband this year then why not go down the useful and practical route of underwear, something that every man needs and doesn’t end up as clutter!

House of Fraser have some great socks and boxer shorts sets available.  How about this brightly coloured boxset of trunks by Diesel, containing three pairs of funky coloured underwear that comfortable to wear, great for everyday use.

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Or how this Emma Bridgewater mug with ‘Dad is my Hero’ printed on the outside in a fun italic print.  The mug is a good size too with being able to hold half a pint of liquid.  It’s a really nice style too and would make a great gift.

Mug

All reviews are my own and my family’s opinions and we received some of the products in order to write an honest review.

 

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Personalised Happy Families Card Games

Happy Families is a long played traditional card game, but this new personalised version from Go For It Games gives it a special twist and added entertainment value to play.  Go For It Games offer a range of personalised card games but we were sent out namesake version of Happy Families to try out.

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The came comes in an eyecatching box that immediately caught the children’s attention, with them wanting to sit and play.  Also included is a sheet of personalised wrapping paper which makes this really lovely to give as a gift to a family as the whole package can be personal to them.

happy families

Inside the box you will find two piles of cards which can be merged together, and a number of instruction cards that need to be removed and kept aside to remind you of the rules of play.  The game cleverly comes with two games to play, the traditional Happy Families and Go Fish, a variation on the game, although overall the pack can be used to play various other games such as snap etc just as you would a normal deck of cards.

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The cards themselves in the pack were a big highlight for us. Each set of four is themed around an event or occasion and there is a Mr, Mrs, Miss and Master which fits our family perfectly.  The children found the pictures and themes really exciting, relating as many as they could to themselves.  5yr old Mister B’s favourite was the Martins at Easter, as Master Martin is sat there amongst a pile of Easter eggs eating a large chocolate one!  There are also random facts about the surname Martin at the bottom of some of the cards.

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With two children eager to play we got started.  Go Fish is similar game to Happy Families although instead of holding all of the cards, you only have 7 each and the rest go in a pile in the centre, which you tell players to “Go Fish” from if you don’t have the card they are asking for.  After playing a couple of each versions of the game, it was clear that my children aged 8 and 5 prefered Go Fish and we have been playing that all week!

In fact they love it and it is our go to game at the moment, it is best played with 3 or more players and provides simple, fun, family entertainment.  Being small it is ideal to take on holidays too, something I’ll definitely be packing this summer!

These games are great with their personalised feature and with the 24 most popular surnames included it’s worth checking out Go For It Games to see if yours is there too!

If you do decide to purchase for either yourself or as a gift then the code MARTIN10 will give you a 10% discount until the 24th December 2017!

All reviews are my own and my family’s opinions and we received the product in order to write an honest review.

The Little Boy who lost his Name – Personalised Book Review

The Little Boy who lost his Name is a beautifully illustrated book that is personalised to the name of your child over almost thirty pages of a fun adventure.  Personalised books have always gone down well with my children so I thought this would be perfect for 5yr old Mister B to try out.

WP_20160219_14_59_31_ProThe book tells the story of a little boy who wakes up and has forgotten his name.  He heads out on a mission to find it, and along the way meets various characters who he chats to and they end up giving him a letter in the hope that he finds his name.

Mister B didn’t twig at first that the letters where going to spell out his name but he was incredibly excited that he was coming across letters in the book that were the same one’s as in his name.  We got to the end of reading the book and he said ” The boy’s got the same name as me!”,  Bless him!

lost nameThe book really is a lovely read, a fairly long story for personalised books and one that keeps the child intrigued, eager to see what the next letter will be.  The book is high quality, well made and a great addition to any bookcase.  Mister B loved his new book and I truly believe this is a well thought out, fun way of personalising a book that kids will love especially when they discover that the child’s name is the same as their own!

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Also available in as ‘The Little Girl who lost her Name’, these books make fantastic gifts and a book to treasure for little ones, we loved it, why not check them out for yourself.

All reviews are my own and my family’s opinions and we received the product in order to write an honest review.

ijustloveit.co.uk Online Gift Store – Review

I Just Love It is a wonderful online gift store, with a wide variety of gifts, many of them personalised giving them added meaning to the recipient.  They also have things that are a little bit different from the high street, meaning you can find something unique and special for birthday’s, anniversaries and Christmas etc.

I chose a selection of gifts, all for me to try out and I have to say I haven’t been disappointed!

giftsI should save the best till last but I just have to show you this amazing personalised cake tin.  I absolutely adore it, both in style and quality and it will take pride of place in my kitchen.  It is a little pricey at £42.99, but when you see it with its personalisation and feel it’s strong sturdy quality, you’ll know it’s worth having!

gifts 4The metal is really thick and strong, this tin really is made to last.  It has a handle on top of the lid to aid in opening.  What makes this tin different to others I’ve seen is the airtight seal, meaning that your cakes will stay really fresh and biscuits will stay crisp.  I love the grey colour, neutral but stylish.  The personalisation really makes this tin special though, and makes it the perfect tin to keep on show as well as the perfect storage for all my lovely baked treats.  I can’t wait to serve visitors with a treat from my tin when they come round for tea!

gifts 3This Personalised My Family Keyring is so cute with a silver charm for each child that is engraved with their name and a heart for wording of your choice, of which I chose my name.  The charms are made from a zinc alloy making them sturdy and strong.  At £12.99 I think this would make a lovely gift, I certainly would be more than happy receiving this from my children at birthdays or Christmas (obviously with another adult helping them to buy and order it).  This will be home to my house keys from now and live in my handbag,  I’m very pleased with this item.

gifts 6A girl can never be without too many make up bags, you know what it’s like, some get a bit old and need replacing, you need one for make up, one for hair bits, one for other toiletries etc.. I really like the simple but elegant style of this Beauty Parlour Wash Bag and with its neutral colours and pvc coated cotton outer, it’s practical and also a good size.  This one does seem really well made and at £14.99 is a good price for the quality and has room to hold quite a few items.  It’s sitting proudly in my bathroom at the moment, full of little bits and bobs to make it look at bit tidier but I’m also looking forward to using it when I go away.

gifts 2A small but cute gift is this Grow Me Say It With Flowers Seed Kit and priced at £3.99 is a bargain.  I love roses and hope this successfully grows and is something I can plant in the garden.  An ideal stocking filler or smaller gift if you are doing a bag of presents, then this is the perfect extra.

gifts 5I’ve been really pleased with the selection of gifts from I Just Love It and would happily shop there again.  The items are certainly different from what you’d find elsewhere and the personalisation on the some of the items is unique and makes them stand out a bit.  If you are stuck for gift ideas, then I’d definitely give here a look, the range is vast and you’re sure to find something for person you are gifting.

All reviews are my own and my family’s opinions and we received the items in order to write the review.