It’s always nice when you get a surprise delivery, be it a bunch of gorgeous flowers, a plant or a hamper and Serenata Flowers are an online company that can arrange for any of these gifts to be sent to the person of your choice.
I was delighted to be sent this Lavender Planter, perfect to stand on my patio, and one of my favourite colours. Included is the wooden planter and inside are two lovely lavender plants.
I’m really pleased with this gift and would have been more than happy to receive it as a surprise. It fits perfectly in with the feel of my garden, is a style I like and I love the colour!
The quality from Serenata is great and the plant I received was packed very well, certainly a company I’d use again if I wanted to send some birthday flowers, or a hamper treat.
Talking of hampers, Serenata have a wide range available from pamper hampers, to cheese hampers, food hampers and this rather delicious looking luxury chocolate hamper of which I have one to giveaway!
Belgian Choclate Infused Handmade Fudge 113g
Willow Hamper – Small
Luxury Ribboned Box of Belgian Chocolates – Small
Ballotin of Salted Toffee Truffles 100g
White Chocolate Covered Strawberries
Luxury Dark Chocolate Coated Brazil Nuts
Luxury Yoghurt Covered Peanut/Raisins
If you’d like to win the above hamper then just fill in the Gleam form below:
Wicked Uncle is an online gift retailer with a little difference. It aims to be of help to those unsure what to buy or what is appropriate to a certain age. It covers all ages from babies to teens so there really is something for everyone.
Rather than sitting for hours scrolling through pages of gifts, they are categorised by gender and age, don’t worry, lot’s of products are included in both boys and girls but it helps to segregate them by what is most popularly bought for the relevant category.
Once you have chosen you are then given a large page of gifts to look through all of which will be age appropriate for the child you are purchasing for. There is a wide choice available from crafts to magic, stationery to gadgets and bath treats to edible items.
I had a look through and chose a couple of items I thought my children would love to see what they thought. I chose the Melissa and Doug Rainforest Stamp Set as my two love stamping, particularly Mister B and I knew this was something he’d be happy to sit and do. Also they love animals and there’s lot of different scenes they can create with these.
Retailing at £14.99, I thought it was great value with a total of 20 stamps, a double coloured stamp pad and pack of coloured pencils. They also come in a wooden tray style box which is great to store craft bits on a shelf. My two children were eager to get stamping when they saw this and I gave them each an A3 sheet of paper to get creative on.
They soon realised that if they put the stamp over both colours of the ink pad they could get mulitcoloured stamps which they thought was fascinating. The stamps are all of great quality, being wooden means they look good too. The choice of stamps in this set is really good with a mixture of animals and some foliage designs too.
The children really enjoyed these and I think it’s a lovely set, one that I definitely recommend for anyone who fancies a go with stampers.
We also chose something a little bit different to try out from Wicked Uncle, something practical that I knew Miss M would enjoy. The Big Cheese Making Kit, allows you to make cheese in your own home and lots of it too! Miss M loves cooking and I wanted to pick something that was useful and I think this was just the right thing.
At £22.99 this wasn’t cheap and when the box arrived, it was pretty small. Inside was a sachet of salt, sachet of Citric Acid, 2 rennet tablets, thermometer and muslin cloth. The kit enables you to make either Ricotta or Mozzarella cheese, all you need to add is millk, a LOT of it!! So was it worth it?
We decided to try the Mozzarella cheese, which required 8 pints of milk per batch. I wasn’t sure how long it would take or how easy it would be but Miss M and I set to work. I actually found the whole process to be incredibly easy and it was more or less a case of simply heating the milk in a large pan, adding a piece of rennet tablet, salt and citric acid, then stirring continuously as the curds and whey separated.
Once you have just the curds in a bowl, it needs microwaving to heat up at which point you need to wear gloves as the cheese needs to be stretched and kneaded until it becomes shiny which can then be broken up into balls of Mozzarella. We made rather a lot of balls of cheese with that one batch (not surprising considering we used 8 pints of milk) but the set does contain enough bits to make upto 10 batchs of cheese of this size. Obviously you need to add the milk each time but at £2 per batch I think it is pretty good value for the amount of cheese you get. Also bearing in mind that part of it is the experience and fun of doing so.
We’ve enjoyed eating the cheese in salads and on puff pastry tarts with roasted vegetables. Obviously Mozzarella has many uses and in our next batch we are planning to make some pizzas with it. We also want to try making some Ricotta cheese for which you use the muslin to strain the cheese, I’m thinking spinach and ricotta parcels for mains and ricotta cheesecake for dessert! All in all I’m very happy with the cheese set, it was fantastic to try something new, a very different experience that Miss M loved helping out with and we had fun eating it!
Why not take a look at Wicked Uncle, the choice of gifts really is vast with some really different things available that you don’t normally see!
All reviews are my own and my family’s opinions and we received the products in order to write the review.
Great Gizmos sell a wide range of children’s toys and gifts, and have a lovely selection from the brand NICI, of which we were sent a few items to try out. I could immediately tell all the items are of a high quality, well made and look good so I was keen to get the children to try them out.
We received a Timmy the sheep backpack, sloth pencil case, coloured pencil tin and child size scissors.
The Timmy backpack has been a huge success in both it’s softness and likeness to a cuddly toy as well as it’s usefulness as a bag. Both my children loved this and decided to take turns each day in using it. Miss M above is modelling it and you can see it’s a medium size bag and Timmy’s head lifts up to get inside. It fastens with a strong magnetic button that keeps everything secure inside. The straps are adjustable and are a lovely bright lime green colour. The bag itself is exceptionally soft and my children loved cuddling it when they were out and about in place of a cuddly they would use at home. This bag has been a hit with my two and has even been on it’s first trip to France and was great to carry a few useful items in.
The Sloth pencil case is lovely, one of the most luxurious pencil cases around. It feels so soft to the touch and has a really cute sloth on the outsdie. Inside the lid unrolls to reveal storage for a number of pens or pencils. You then have the main zipped compartment with plenty of storage inside for all your other stationery items.
The scissors are cute with a wild animal theme and are sharp enough to cut well, but perfect for little fingers. My little boy has made good use of these as he loves to cut his pictures out when he draws them.
I just love the coloured pencils in the Kangaroo tin, how I would have loved these as a child! The ideal of them being double ended with two different colours in each pencil is fabulous and means you only have to carry half the amount of pencils around with you but still have all the colours!
I think the NICI range of stationery from Great Gizmos is lovely and made to a high standard. They are a little pricier than other brands, but to be honest, you get what you pay for. I’ll definitely keep an eye out for other NICI products as I’ve been really pleased with what we’ve tried out here.
All reviews are my own and my family’s opinions and we received the products in order to write the review.
The Shed Inc is a homeware website selling a wonderful array of items for around the home, featuring gorgeous high quality fabrics and unique designs. We received a selection to try out in the Moggy and Pink Daisy designs.
Being a cat lover the Moggy design products immediately appealed to me. In a very neutral taupe and off white colour they will suit any kitchen or room. The first thing I noticed about The Shed Inc’s products is the quality. Immediately you can see these are well made using strong, durable fabrics that feel thick and being 100% cotton are machine washable.
The tea towel is really thick and absorbent and looks lovely hanging over my kitchen radiator. The oven gloves are equally thick with great padding to ensure your fingers don’t get burnt when using the oven. They are well made with thick, well stitched binding that will last. I also love the cute Moggy design and they look great in the kitchen.
I also tried this large wash bag which is tall, perfect for items such as deodorant, hairspray etc. It comes in the same Moggy design but has is a wipeable coated fabric, perfect for sitting in steamy areas. The inside is cotton, but ideal for dry items as mentioned above. There is also a really sturdy, heavy duty zip across the top, which is brilliant although I did find the opening slightly on the narrow side, it felt like it needed to be a little bit wider.
I just love the Pink Daisy items we received for Miss M and her eyes lit up when she saw them which is a good sign. The cotton tote bag is a nice size and can have many uses but perfect for Miss M to put her book and a couple of Barbie dolls in when she goes out.
The apron was an immediate hit too and before I knew it she had it on along with her chef’s hat ready to bake!!
Again with these products they are made with incredibly thick, durable cotton and finished beautifully with thorough stitching. The apron has a lovely thick binding around the edge which adds to the look and design as well.
I love all the products we have tried from The Shed Inc and feel that they are all made to an excellent standard. Not only are would they be a lovely treat to buy for yourself, but they are perfect for gifts. With other prints and products available, why not take a look at The Shed Inc and you may just find yourself wanting to treat yourself to one of their lovely products.
All reviews are my own and my family’s opinions and we received the products in order to write the review.
Mother’s Day is the perfect time to spend time with family and of course spoil your mum. But what do you buy? There’s always the traditional flowers and chocolates but I think it’s nice to find something a bit different and possibly personalised. This is where Truprintcould be the place you are looking for. Nowadays they do so much more than produce photographic prints, in fact there is quite an array of personalised gifts available that would be perfect for Mother’s Day this year.
For my mum, I will probably buy her some flowers but I like to give her a present too. It’s always hard to buy for her as she seems to have everything but then I spotted this personalised jigsaw which can be made from a photograph. I know she enjoys doing a jigsaw, so I decided to get a puzzle made up using a family photograph taken earlier this year. I think it is something that she will enjoy doing with the grandchildren and they will be fascinated that their images have been immortalised onto a jigsaw!
For myself I want something useful for Mother’s Day, a nice gift that doesn’t just sit there (I have enough clutter in my house!) so when I spotted this 13oz Photo Travel Mug I knew it’s something I’d like to receive as I need a new lidded mug for work and how lovely to be able to look at pictures of my children all day! I think receiving something practical is so much more acceptable these days especially when it’s personalised.
For children I think it’s appropriate to give just a small gift to their mummies, and something they can help design themselves and thats when I spotted these 3D Animated Bookmarks. With a vast choice of backgrounds to choose from and the ability to add two photos to each one that magically change when you tilt it, these are the perfect choice for children to give as gifts. My two designed one each with their own photos in and I can’t wait to receive them on Mother’s Day to use in my books.
Another simple idea is a keyring where you can simply choose an image to go inside. These are ideal to use as a small gift on their own, or to add to other gifts.
Why not take a look at the Truprint website yourself and see what you can find to give your mum this Mother’s Day?
Truprint also offer photo cards, so what a perfect opportunity to have one made up for your mum this Mother’s Day. This year Truprint are running a Mum in a Million campaign where they want to make a million mums smile by giving away 1 million personalised Mother’s Day cards.
To claim one of these cards just go to Truprint and enter MUMINAMILLION at the checkout.
Awards one free 7×5 folded card
Standard P&P charges apply (99p)
Ship to recipient not available
Complete with envelope
Code is One time use only
Strictly one code use per household.
I was provided with Truprint credit to write this post, all opinions are my own.
Wild & Wolfare both a designer and manufacturer of gift products, homeware and accessories for both children and adults that can be found in small independent gift shops as well as large department stores. I’ve looked at their website and they have lots of lovely gifts perfect for Christmas, well worth checking out as there really is something for everyone. We were sent us some of their The Very Hungry Caterpillar range of products to try out with the children.
The Very Hungry Caterpillar is a popular children’s story that we all know and love both from our childhood as well as my own children discovering the story now, and having as much fun reading it as it reaches it’s 45th year of publication this year.
We received the Finger Printing Kit and the Tulip Divided Plate.
The Tulip Divided Plate is a really beautiful melamine plate. It’s really solid, a very durable well made piece. It think the design on this with the butterfly and flowers is lovely, perfect for my daughter Miss M who has been wanting a divided plate for a while now. Being melamine, this feels more grown up than other children’s plates without the fear of it being broken like a china plate.
The children couldn’t wait to have a go at the Finger Printing Kit. This would make a lovely gift, it is well presented and a great little set. It consists of a 6 multicoloured ink pad and 14 card pictures, some with holes in to act as finger puppet pictures.
There are various animal images to colour such as the caterpillar himself, butterfly, horse, crocodile, monkey etc. My children Miss M and Mister B were eager to get started. It was so simple and mostly mess free. By simply pressing your finger onto the sponge pad to pick up some ink, you then dabbed into onto the picture to colour. The ink pad was full of colour, plenty to use for all the pictures.
My children loved creating their pieces of art, Mister B designing a multi coloured spotty crocodile and Miss M colouring a large image of The Very Hungry Caterpillar and also a smaller picture of him on a giant strawberry!
I think these look really effective when finished and they really enjoyed painting them. What a lovely painting gift kit for someone to receive, with enough pictures to have several sessions painting.
There are other products in The Hungry Caterpillar range that all look equally as nice such as some stacking snack pots, a bunting making kit, stamper kit and card making kit.
I think Wild & Wolf have many lovely gifts to offer of a traditional feel, and that appear of a good quality that you’d be happy to both give and receive, why not take a look for yourself and keep an eye out for their gifts when out and about in the shops.
With Father’s Day looming, it’s time to get shopping for a gift to give the Dad in your life. With two young children, we only look to buy small value items that they can give to daddy. With a daddy who has most things he needs, I try to avoid anything gimmicky or things that would end up as clutter so I try to search out for useful gifts for the children to give to daddy. Things such as chocolate are always a winner and something that will be eaten up quickly.
Another useful idea is toiletries, something a dad will always use, not too expensive and a great idea for him to try out something new. Dove have produced a range of gift sets, perfect to give your dad this Father’s Day.
We were sent the Daily Care Duo to try out, a set containing a bottle of Body and Face Wash and a can of 48hour anti-perspirant deodorant. Interestly the can is one of the new compressed can’s and looks quite small, but should last the same length of time. Handy for travel or for the gym bag! This set is aimed at the Active and Playful Dad, well our’s does cycle to and from work each day so this will be great to use in the shower after his cycle. These smell manly and fresh and my husband was pleased with them and would definitely use them again. He also agreed he’d be happy to receive a gift set like this on Fathers Day.
We also tried the Radox Muscle Therapy bath soak. This contains a stimulated blend including black pepper and ginseng to really help you relax. As you run the bath, the fragrance fills the bathroom, making it the perfect environment to relax in. Our daddy prefers showers to baths, but admitted that this is definitely relaxing and enjoyed laying down in the bath for a while – a great little treat!
If you are still looking for a Father’s Day gift or want to get a little extra, then why not check out one of this gift ideas from Dove or Radox. These are great for someone that is hard to buy for, has everything he wants or if you aren’t looking to spend too much. We’d recommend them and our daddy says he’d be more than happy to receive them on Father’s Day!
All reviews are my own and my family’s opinions and we received the toilietries in order to write the review.
Hallmark is a brand I’ve always liked for greetings cards, they have great designs and are of a good quality so I was pleased to try out some of their new interactive gifts aimed at children. We received the Until We Hug Again teddy bear along with two interactive storybooks, All Aboard and Fairy Grandmother.
The Interactive story books come complete with batteries. They are operated by an on/off button on the top of each one and they work by reacting to certain lines you say within the book. Each page highlights the last line in a different colour and this is to prompt you to read this line clearly as the book will respond and often ask the child a question as to what to do next. You need to make sure your child responds clearly and quite quickly to enable the book to keep interacting.
All Aboard is a book about a train journey to Celebration city with Connor the conductor. Connor interacts with you, getting you to make decisions about which way to go, or to point out where something is. The book usually gives you two options and depending on your answer will respond accordingly. Unfortunately a cow gets stuck on the track but with your help, you can get the cow to move to allow the train to continue it’s journey.
Mister B who is 3 loved being able to talk to the book and make decisions for Connor. It’s a really entertaining idea and totally different to any other book we have seen.
Miss M who is 6 was really excited about reading A day at Fairy Grandmother’s. The brightly coloured illustrations immediately caught her eye and she actually did quite well at reading the story herself. The story follows your adventure as you visit the Fairy Grandmother at her castle and get to choose what to eat and help her look for her lost wand in her garden full of delightful sweet treats where you even come across a friendly dragon.
Both of these Hallmark interactive books would make excellent gifts for children. We have been really impressed with them, they really engage the children in the storyline and it’s a really unusual and different concept for a character in a book to respond to things you say and ask questions. My children both enjoyed the interaction and couldn’t wait to hear what was said next. The books are a good, large size too being just slightly bigger than A4, and all pages are full colour with bold interesting pictures, plenty to look at and talk about.
The Until We Hug Again bear is a fantastic idea, a great gift and would be really special if you ever had to be apart from a little one, whether it’s just for the weekend or longer. The bear was an instant hit with Miss M who hasn’t stopped cuddling him. The quality of the bear is really good, it’s well made and feels lovely and soft to touch. Standing at around 11 inches it’s a good size too.
The bear has the ability to record a message that can be played by pressing the heart on the bear’s tummy. To record a message you simply press the record button on the foot and say your message. This will then play back each time the heart is pressed and a new message can be recorded at any time. If you want to save the message you have recorded you simply slide a switch in the battery compartment to lock it.
I recorded a message for Miss M to tell her I love her and wishing her a good nights sleep. She takes it to bed each night for cuddles and can listen to my voice whenever she wants. She has really taken to this bear and it has come everywhere with us. A truly special gift for a child, ideal for parents or grandparents to give to a child close to them.
We’ve really enjoyed all these Hallmark interactive gifts. As you can see below the Until We Hug Again teddy has had trips to the park and the children enjoyed listening to Nanny reading them the interactive books and she was just as impressed with them too!
If you are looking for a special gift for a child then why not check out Hallmark?
All reviews are my own and my family’s opinions and we received the Hallmark gifts in order to write the review.
It’s the season for chocolate, well it is all year in my book, but hey at least you can enjoy it at this time of year without worrying about your waistline. There are a vast array of special designs and moulded figures available for the festive season that look almost too good to eat.
Thorntons have come up with a wonderful range suitable for children designed around The Snowman and The Snowdog, with much of it made of white chocolate. There are beautifully crafted models, chocolate lollipops and selection packs. Why don’t you check out the lovely range of Christmas gifts here at Thorntons.
If you’d like to win The Snowman & The Snowdog Christmas Bundle from Thorntons, then I have one to giveaway to a lucky reader, just fill in the form below to enter:
Prize draw open to customers and non-customers aged 18 or over who are UK residents. Draw is not open to employees of Thorntons, their families or anyone associated with this draw. Proof of eligibility must be provided on request.
Winners will be drawn at random at the end of the promotion.
The promoter reserves the right (a) to add to or waive any rules on reasonable notice (b) cancel or postpone the promotion at any stage in the event of circumstances beyond its reasonable control; or (c) in its reasonable discretion to substitute a prize of equal or greater value.