Takeout The Card Game – Review

Takeout: The Card Game is a social card game suitable for 2-4 players and with a suggested age of 10 years plus although my 9yr old loves playing it.  From Small Monsters Games, it is fast paced card game as you try to beat the other players to get an entire Chinese meal for yourself.

The scene is set for the game:

In Takeout, players are a group of young backpackers in a tiny noodle shop down an alley in China. Although none of you speak Chinese, you’re determined to sample authentic Chinese cuisine. The object of the game is to get one dish of each flavor (sweet, sour, salty, spicy and bitter) and a cold drink into your meal, before any of your friends do.

In the Takeout card box are a variety of cards, food cards and action cards which start together in a kitchen pile but are discarded into either a food pile that other players can select the top one from or a general discard pile.

There are also cards which show the complete range of flavours you need to collect in our meal and each player can have one of these cards in front of them to remind them of what they need to collect.

It’s then time for the game play to start. The instructions are fairly simple although it’s good to have a first round of play where you are not competitive and just getting to grips with rules.  After that everyone was at battle to get their meal prepared first!

The Takeout game starts by dealing out 5 cards per player, and then each player takes a turn that consists of drawing a card, playing a card and discarding a card.  If you get a food card you have the option of keeping it, playing it of discarding and this is were you get tactical. Sometimes it’s worth playing a duplicate food card to conceal the fact you have another one to complete your meal.  But also you have to remember the action cards come into play and you get the option of helping yourself to one of your friends dishes, sending one of the other players dishes to the bottom of the kitchen pile, swap a meal with a friend or pick a random meal you fancy from one of your friends!

We’ve really enjoyed playing this game as a family with my 9 and 11 year old children. It is fun, they are always eager to be the first to complete their meal first and they love the action cards when they can either steal off of others or put a part of someone’s meal back in the kitchen.  It’s a game of both chance with getting the meals you need and tactical playing to complete the entire meal.  With Takeout being a card game it means it’s great for carrying around with you for play anywhere, great for travelling, holidays etc as well as simply playing at home.  A fun game that we’d recommend!

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.

Fun stocking filler and party games from Ginger Fox – Review

If you are looking for some fun this Christmas then head to Ginger Fox who have a plethora of fun, family games suitable as stocking fillers, secret santa’s or just to put on the table as an after dinner party game. There are some great ideas out there that will suit all ages and are guaranteed fun – take a look below.

First up is Space Dash a game for 3-6 players and a recommended age of 8+.  The object of the game is to collect the correct sequence of cards in order to ‘touch down’ and be the first player to do so.  It’s a quick, fast paced game that my children love as you all play at the same time in a scramble to get your sequence of cards first.

Bump This is a thoroughly modern game that young people will enjoy.  Hand shaking and fist bumping galore in a variety of ways.  The idea is to build a sequence of hand shakes until a player gets one wrong and then you move onto the next round.  From just 2 players upwards this is fun to play with just the two of year or ideal for parties or an after dinner game.

Catchphrase is my boy’s favourite Saturday night tv show so I knew this game would be a hit here.  With a recommended age of 12+, we did adapt the game to allow my 9 year old to play and do give him time to make a guess as he loves it so much and has so much fun trying to guess some of the clues.  Being a card game makes it very portable and everyone has a laugh with some of the guesses being made.

Ginger Fox have an array of novelty mugs available and I think this Inky the Ghost from Pacman is just the cutest – perfect for kids stocking fillers. They have many for adults too, such as guess the tv shows, films, rude plants and cats to name just a few – go check them out!

Yule Duel has to be the ultimate game for after dinner games over the festive season.  With three games packed into this cute compendium of games box, they are ideal for to get the entertainment started and bring on some laughter without having to set up a structured board game. Suitable for 4 players upwards these mini cards are great to play either around the table or chilling out on a sofa, as long as you can grab a card when it’s your turn, play can happen anywhere.

Here are the games included:

  • Who am I? A classic game of yes-or-no answers. It’s a race against time to work out who you are.
  • Charades Are you a master of mime? Put your skills to the test as you take turns to act out a TV, film, book or song title!
  • Slip of the tongue The party game that will have you tongue tied. Describe what’s on the card without saying the forbidden words!

I’m super impressed at this little bundle of games and think we’ll have lots of fun over the festive season playing them when friends and family visit.  Available on Amazon although I also these games in Debenhams on my Christmas shopping spree last week, in the 3 for 2 gift section so be sure to check them out!

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.

 

Elf for Christmas – Review

An Elf for Christmas is a great way to make the run up to Christmas special for children by using the elf as an incentive to get them behave but also creating lots of fun by getting up to mischief overnight for the children to find in the morning.

The Elf for Christmas Magical Reward Kit contains everything you need on the run up to Christmas.  The actual Elf is a really lovely quality and comes beautifully dressed.  You can get it in either girl or boy variants, we received the boy who comes in his lovely green cord dungarees.  Also inside the box you will find an array of items you can leave with the Elf each day to encourage your child to behave on the run up to Santa’s arrival and add to the fun that the Elf brings each day!

  • An Arrival Letter from Santa
  • Mini Elf Report Cards
  • 2 x Letter to Santa Templates
  • 2 x Official Nice List Certificates
  • Christmas Reward Chart & a Sheet of Elf Stickers
  • Beware of the Elf Sign & Santa Please Stop Here Sign 
  • Departure Letter
  • A Thank You Postcard

The Elf’s First Adventure book is a lovely story full of coloured pages to really engage with little ones.  I think this is an ideal gift for the Elf to leave out one day and is a nice story to read at bedtimes.

One of my favourite items from the Elf for Christmas range has to be this Magical Elf Door.  It’s well made and has some lovely detail on it and is perfect to stand against a wall inside your house.  You can use your imagination however you want for this but it’s great to suggest this is the door the elves go through to get back to the North Pole and get busy wrapping presents.

The best feature about this door is that it also lights up.  Batteries are included so it’s just a case of putting them in the battery holder on the underside and switch it on.  How pretty is this?

I think the Elf for Christmas range is totally magical for little ones and really helps bring the Christmas countdown in December alive and fun. There are numerous products available in the range to help you our so they are well worth checking out.  Everything has been carefully thought about and well made.

So if you haven’t got an elf yet or want to add one to your collection (we here have a couple of little mischievous little visitors each night!) then take a look at Elf for Christmas.

What will your elf be getting up to tonight?  Ours has cheekily jumped aboard the boy’s homemade fire engine!

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.

Chocolate Emoji Maker – Review

Chocolate Emoji Maker from Zimpli Kids is exactly what it says on the box.  You get to make two emoji shaped chocolate bars using 100% Belgian chocolate.  The set is simple to use and gives kids something to make, then something to enjoy eating after!

In the box you will find:

  • 2 trays to use as moulds
  • stencil sheet
  • 2 sachets milk chocolate
  • 2 sachets dark chocolate
  • 2 sachets white chocolate

The instructions are clear to follow and there is a really good size sheet with 6 emoji stencils on to follow when drawing with the chocolate. They sit underneath the clear trays so you can follow the design.

It’s then a case of melting the bags of chocolate in a bowl of hot (not boiling) water for a few minutes, cutting a very small corner off of each bag and use them like a piping bag to cover the design.

You can pipe each colour on top of the others so there is no waiting around between the different chocolates.  Although bear in mind that you need to work fairy quickly to ensure the chocolate stays runny enough for a good design.  Once finished just leave in the fridge for half an hour or so before simply popping out of the plastic mould.

We are really pleased with the results of the Chocolate Emoji Maker, in fact the children were thrilled with the finished piece.  The size reminded me of one of those giant chocolate coins you get at Christmas time and was around half a centimetre in depth.

The verdict from the kids upon eating them – utterly delicious – which I guess comes from the set using 100%  Belgian chocolate.  This would make a great little present over the festive time or even for birthdays.  A definite extra to add to Santa’s sack this year!

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Zimpli Kids also have lots of products to add fun to the bath tub or alternatively you could just do them in a bucket or large plastic storage box in the house.

First up is Gelli Baff – a firm favourite of my two who have been using it since 2013!  Even though they are getting quite big for bathing together, they insisted on putting on their swimmers and getting into a bath full of Gelli Baff to play together.

It’s so simple to use, you just run a bath as normal and then sprinkle over the contents of the Gelli Baff sachet and stir with your arm to allow the water to turn into a bright coloured jelly like substance.

There are various colours available such as blue, green, purple etc to give you a variety of options, this time we used the blue.  As you can see it’s a smooth but textured substance that the children just love.

My children have so much fun with this and after they’ve played with it for a while and it goes cold, we do add some warmer water which does make the Gelli Baff thinner but still fun to play in. In fact my children stayed in this bath for 1 hour and 20 mins this time!!!  Which to me says they clearly thought it was fun and thoroughly enjoyed themselves.

Just to add then when you are done, it’s best to add lots of water to thin it out even more and add the included sachet off salt which helps to break down the particles.  We have used this multiple times over the years and never had any issues with it passing through the drain.

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Next up is Crackle Baff Colours which is a simple little sachet of crystals that literally turns the bath a different colour, but also upon sprinkling the crystals on top of the water they crackle away for a minute or so which is quite fun.  You don’t know what colour you will get in the packet and we got yellow which is my boy’s favourite colour so he was happy although it wasn’t the best to take pictures with – it was a very vibrant yellow in the bath though.

He’s a short clip so you can listen to the crackles:

 

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Lastly is the SnoBall Play which again is activated by simply adding water.  We like to do this in a bucket and the children love a snow ball fight.  With the wet dull weather and dark evenings we haven’t really been able to have any garden play but check out my SnoBall Play post from earlier in the year when they had lots of fun outside.

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All in all my children love Zimpli Kids products and we think they’d make perfect stocking fillers or great for small presents for friends.  They certainly get kids smiling and keep them entertained – go check them out now!

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.

 

Locks in Goodness – Hair Care for Kids – Review & Giveaway

Locks in Goodness is a new brand aimed at children to help style and tame their hair with it’s key message being that it only contains ingredients with a 100% natural origin meaning they have been minimally processed and still closely resemble the original plant. Also all ingredients approved by the British Soil Association.

First off is the Hair Gel which I knew my boy would love to try.  He’s recently got into a phase where he loves to style his hair himself and has grown it so that he can slick it down on one side.

“Every dollop of our natural, 95% organic and vegan hair gel is bursting with 100% plant-based goodness to give your locks the right amount of hold without any nasties”

A bonus of the product being packed with natural essential oils is that it is also great for helping to prevent nits and lice – just what you need when you have primary age school children.  Being full of natural goodness as well means I know that my boy isn’t putting any nasty chemical filled products into his hair.  The first thing he commented on when squirting some out was the smell, and I think that’s down to the tea tree oil fragrance.

He wouldn’t let me touch his hair so here he is with his own slick hair style!

 

Onto the Hair Smoothie which is a leave-in conditioner that aims to detangle and smooth hair.  My daughter has really thick, wavy hair that tangles easily, not something she is fond of and not something that I find overly manageable.  She will only wear it in two plaits on a daily basis as it’s the only way it keeps it under control.  She finds just one ponytail too heavy and admittedly I agree, it is bulky and we struggle to find hair accessories to hold it in place properly.

Anyway, once or twice a week we do wash her hair to make it squeaky clean although it’s quite a task to then work through it with a tangle teezing brush to try and untangle and tame it.

“Every squidge of our natural, 90% organic and vegan leave-in conditioner is bursting with hair loving oils and 100% plant-based goodness to give your locks the right amount of hold without any nasties”

So this weekend she washed her hair as normal then after lightly towel drying it, she applied a dollop of the Hair Smoothie which she ran it between her fingers and down the lengths of her hair.  I could immediately see a difference with her hair detangling as I helped using a tangle teezer brush to go from top to bottom.  Whereas it would normally take a number of attempts to get the brush from top to bottom this definitely made it quicker and easier to separate the hair and left it looking really smooth ready for the plaits to go in again!

So what do we think of Locks in Goodness hair goodies for kids?

  • They smell really natural and full of goodness
  • They come in easy to squeeze out tubes that are made from sugar cane and are both 100% recyclable and biodegradable
  • They do exactly what they say on the tube – that’s either style the hair or detangle depending on product
  • They are simple to use and perfectly suitable for kids of all ages

If you wish to try the products then head to Locks in Goodness and use code LIG10 for a 10% Discount Code & Free Delivery.

I also have a set of both products to give away to one of my readers – just fill in the Gleam form below:

The Locks in Goodness Giveaway #5

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.

World Series STARE OFF Official Game – Review

World Series STARE OFF Official Game takes staring competitions to the next level with two headbands and poles for an official game along with a blocking screen, red card, distraction cards and a rule sheet. It’s great fun for all the family and for all ages – anyone can join in and it’s great that young can fairly compete against those older than them.

The essential parts of a the game include a three piece pole and two head pieces that attach to each end. The pole can be shortened by removing a section of the pole and you do this as you move through the rounds.

You randomly draw names to choose the first two players to have a match and pick someone to be the referee who will do a countdown to start and also shout ‘Blinker’ and show the red card when a player has blinked. This ends each round and players move onto the next one to see who wins the match (first player to win two rounds).

There’s also a blocking screen which you hang from the centre of the pole before each game so that the participants can prepare.  The referee removes this on the countdown to start.

An added fun part to the Stare Off game are the distraction cards.  Each player picks one at the start of the match and can use it in any round of their choice to try and distract their opponent. These are a really fun and interactive part of the game.  My children thought they were hilarious and certainly gave us all the giggles.

You have to do what’s on the card and it can be anything from ‘Meow like a cat wanting food’, ‘Smile a crazy smile’ or ‘Recite your favourite nursery rhyme’.

There are a few rules to follow in the instructions which help you set out guidelines for the Stare Off game, although we did pick and choose these a little as we played, the kids decided that they wanted to use a distraction card in every round as added to the fun.  But with a game like this you can be flexible and make it suit your situation.

Overall we think Stare Off is a fun game that would be ideal for family gatherings or parties.  We can’t wait to play this at Christmas when family come over and my kids are already eager to challenge their cousins to a few staring contests when they visit.  It’s a simple but fun and certainly has the entertainment factor when a group of people are around. I imagine it would make a good drinking game too if you wanted to add a bit of fun to a social night with adult friends.

Will you be adding Stare Off to Santa’s sack this year?

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.

Refreshing my Winter Wardrobe with ACE for Colours Powder

Ace for Colours Powder is your perfect friend for when it comes to refreshing your Winter wardrobe.  If you are anything like me you stash your Winter attire in storage bags under your bed or let it fester at the back of wardrobe until the long, sunny days are over.  Then when you go to retrieve that warm, cosy cardigan or long, dark trousers for work, you find they are looking a little neglected and unloved.

This is where Ace for Colours Powder comes in by simply adding two spoonfuls in addition to your usual detergent in the machine to give your clothes a refresh, remove any marks and stains and leave them smelling great.  It really gives a boost to your clothes and is an ideal way to pep them up for the Winter months.

My Winter work wardrobe isn’t the most exciting of colours but it’s what I prefer to stick to for the office after wearing brighter clothes during the Summer months.  I find running these through the wash with some added Ace for Colours Powders really does make them smell and look good after Winter storage and I feel ready to wear them again. It also removes any little marks that they had and leaves them refreshed.

Although I have a few brights, it’s the children’s wardrobes that are full of bright coloured t-shirts that they wear all year around as well as red school jumpers which need to be kept looking fresh and new.  In fact I found a whole rainbow of colours in the washing this week which I gave a little boost with some added Ace for Colours Powder in the washing machine.  It’s left them looking really colourful and fresh – a great way to revive clothes to ensure they look their best for longer.

Reasons to use ACE:

  • A  – Active – ACE makes life easier by gently removing stains in your wash
  • C – Colourful – ACE keeps clothes brighter and cleaner meaning they last for longer
  • E – Eco friendly – ACE comes in a fully recyclable Tetra pak

I find that you don’t need to use it in every wash but if you use it every few washes or if you want to boost some clothes that haven’t been worn for a while then it’s worth adding a couple of spoonfuls to your wash.  I love the fragrance too, so it will leave your clothes smelling Spring fresh despite it being cold, dark and drizzly outside.

If you want to give Ace for Colours Powder a try then it should be available in Morrison’s Supermarkets or online from Amazon  – give your wardrobe the refresh that it deserves!

 

This post is an entry for the BritMums #ACEWinterRefresh Challenge, sponsored by ACE for Colours Powder. Get help for all kinds of stains with the ACE Stain Helper http://www.acecleanuk.co.uk/ and pick up the range at your nearest Morrison’s store or buy online on Amazon.

Clock it! Guess the card against the clock – Review

Clock it! is a new game from Ideal Games this year that is fast paced and fun for all the family. Aimed at ages 8+, although I think slightly younger could easily join in if they are keen, this is actually a game that is fun for all ages the family.  It’s basically a guessing game in which players have to guess what one player is either describing, drawing or miming – but remember you are against the clock – how many can you guess before the alarm sounds?

The game consists of:

  • 1 Clock It! light up alarm clock (this does require 3 AAA batteries)
  • 1 key
  • 80 double sided challenge cards
  • Clock It clock shaped board
  • 1 wipe clean drawing board
  • 1 wipe board pen

The first job is to put the batteries in the clock which does require a screwdriver, don’t they all these days!  And you obviously need to have the batteries but if you are a family household like mine, we have a permanent stash for any toy or gadget that enters the house and requires batteries.

The Clock it! clock although looks a little basic at first, is actually what adds all the fun to the game and is quite clever in the way that it works.  You can select various modes on the back using the key, either just drawing, just describing, just miming or a combo of all three.

You control it by pressing on the yellow handle at the top and the relevant action and number light up.

Onto the game play for Clock it! of which there are number of variants depending on how many players you have and whether you want to mime, draw, describe or do a combo of all three.

Decide on a number of rounds you wish to play and see which team or individual wins the most.  Firstly you need to set the cards out around the clock it board.  The cards are double sided, one side with a word of an item, the other with a picture of an item.  You can either stick to one or do a mix of both.  Then place twelve cards around the clock, one by each number.

One player is picked to be the first describer and they take control of the clock and need to hide the front from the other players so they don’t see what number the describer is performing.  A top tip in the instructions is that the describer and the people guessing are sat at opposite sides of the table – we found this worked really well!

Once you’ve guessed correctly, you take that card away from the clock and the describer presses the handle down to give them another number to describe.  Play continues until you have either guessed all twelve cards or the alarm bells sound so the quicker you are the more cards you can collect.

The timer clock with it’s ticking sounds and alarm bells really add excitement and fun to the game, keeping everyone on their toes during play.  Once the round has ended you move onto another player or team to be the describer until your desired amount of rounds has ended when you can declare the ultimate winner!

Our pro’s for the Clock it! game:

  • If you like charades style games then this is perfect for you whether you are acting, drawing or describing
  • The alarm clock adds so much excitement and tension to the game and keeps everyone on their toes.
  • The bright coloured cards are eye catching and engaging and with 160 different objects you rarely see a repeat within a round of games
  • There are many variants of the game to keep interest and change up the way you play
  • It’s a game for all ages and can be played with just 2-3 people or 2 larger teams
  • Perfect for Christmas, parties or just all round family weekend fun

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.

Melissa & Doug Deluxe Magic Set – Review

The Melissa & Doug Deluxe Magic Set available from Hello Direct website is a really fabulous wooden set suitable for the ages of 8+.  It’s a case of what you see is what you get, no excessive packaging, no plastic pieces, a beautifully crafted wooden magician’s box that contains ten classic tricks and illusions.  With a bit of fine motor skills practice, you will soon have a little magical performer in the recipient of this wonderful toy.

The tricks can all be stored in the box when not in use which is really handy.

Tricks and illusions included are:

  • Disappearing ball
  • Magic coin box
  • Secret silks
  • Great escape
  • Magic number prediction
  • Money maker
  • Egyptian prediction
  • Vanishing zone
  • Cylinder squeeze
  • Vanishing coin

I love that the wooden storage box for the Melissa & Doug Deluxe Magic Set doubles up as a magicians stage as well to perform all of your magic from and gives you a place to hide your tricks and conceal your hand movements as you prepare them.

I also love the presentation of the instruction sheet.

On to the magic tricks and I think just by looking at the picture you can tell that these are all well made and sturdy due to them being made of wood. They are all painted with bright, fun designs to really help make your magic come to life. My boy who is 8 was immediately struck with all the pieces and couldn’t wait to turn himself into a magician.

The Vanishing Coin trick and the Secret Silks where big hits with my little boy and he couldn’t wait to show everyone once he’d learnt how to do them. Having such well thought out pieces in the Melissa & Doug Deluxe Magic Set makes the tricks look really effective and the bright colours help make the show realistic and magical.

We found the instructions easy to follow and once you understand how a magic trick works it’s just a case of perfecting your moves to make your audience really believe in the illusion you are performing.

One of my boy’s favourite illusions was the Vanishing Zone, in which he passed his magic wand and attached scarf but we couldn’t actually see it when it went through the middle of the box – amazing!

I can honestly say I was very impressed with the Melissa & Doug Deluxe Magic Set. I love that it’s made of wood, the pieces are sturdy and help create a really entertaining magic show.  My boy is currently practicing all of the tricks to do a big magic show for relatives next time they visit and I can’t wait to watch it.

If you are looking for a gift for a child of 8+, then I think this is brilliant and one that will last.  It’s well worth checking out the Hello Direct website as they cover a vast array of baby and children brands such as Melissa & doug, Casdon, Brio, Fisher Price, Hauck, Hape to name just a few!

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.

Dough Nab – The Fast Paced Family Card Game Review

Dough Nab is a fun new game from Ginger Fox based around doughnuts!  It is essentially a card game with some fun props that can be enjoyed by all the family, with a suggested minimum age of 8 years.

boxed dough nab game on table

The game comes with:

  • 60 doughnut shaped cards
  • 3 doughnut playing pieces
  • turn tracker
  • head baker winner’s hat
  • rule sheet

We played as a family including my two children age 11 and 8 who both love playing games and were super excited at the prospect of a doughnut themed game.  The large, durable doughnut playing pieces particularly appealed to them and they couldn’t wait to get started.

In each round the players are dealt 10 doughnut shaped cards with the large doughnut playing pieces sitting in the centre of the table. You then take it in turn to turn over a card and this is repeated around the table with all your eyes on the upturned cards and as soon as you spot certain things you step into action.  For example if you can see 3 cards of the same coloured doughnut then you all race to grab the same colour doughnut from the centre.  The first person to get it can then offload their ‘nab pile’ of discarded cards onto another player.

The object of the Dough Nab game is to get rid of your cards so the more on the ball and observant you are, the better chance you have to win.  Other than the three main colour doughnut cards there are cards with different meanings such as a galaxy covered doughnut that represents any colour so helps you to find a full colour set even quicker.  Then there’s the crumbs cards which simply mean you are unable to grab a doughnut if a colour set comes up in the cards. You then also have NAB! and DON’T NAB! cards to add extra fun into the game.

We found the game to be fast paced and the children loved it.  We found it easier to play and work out some of the rules as we went along and probably played slightly our own version of it but Dough Nab was definitely a game that we all enjoyed and the kids asked to play it again and again.

The lucky winner of each game get’s to wear a baker’s hat!

The Dough Nab game by Ginger Fox is available from Debenhams and would make an ideal present under the tree this Christmas for fun and games over the festive period.  A game for all to join in, the more the merrier up to 6 players for an entertaining and competitive bit of fun – who will get rid of their Dough Nab pile first?

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.