Tuesday, 29 December 2015

Jump Nation Manchester

Sunday we needed to get out the house. Christmas had just finished and it was the lull between Christmas and New Year. Daddy M was working and the girls had been up very early and I was close to pulling my hair out well before 8am. Thankfully we had arranged a play-date with some of J's school friends before the end of school to meet at Jump Nation in Manchester. Perfect timing.
 
We have never been before so was unsure of what to expect. My girls love bouncing on the trampoline in the garden so I knew they would enjoy it. On arrival to Jump Nation Manchester we had to sign a waiver saying we were fit to bounce and explaining the safety rules as trampolining is an "extreme sport". Once we were signed up, we popped our socks on. These need to have rubber grips on the bottom (can be brought for £1.50 a pair if you don't have any.) The kids were soon ready and raring to go.

 
 When we walked into the arena... WOW!! I have never seen so many trampolines before.
 
 

Saturday, 19 December 2015

NHS Varicose Vein Surgery - my journey

Its been a bit of a whirlwind the past 10 days. If you follow my blog you will know I have had a varicose vein on my left leg which has been there for as long as I can remember. Well over 12 years. This week it has gone (hopefully) so thought I would document what has happened as when I tried to search recovery I was only being directed to forums which were hard to follow any one persons journey.

Stagecoach... a gift like no other!

This Christmas J is getting a gift like no other. Its not a present she can unwrap under the tree, well she can unwrap the uniform t-shirt but the actual gift is one that can not be placed under the tree. We are giving her the gift of confidence. A gift that will help her through life now and as she grows. We are giving her the gift of Stage coach.
 
 

Thursday, 10 December 2015

Affordable waterproofs.

We recently was asked if we would like to review some waterproofs from Dry Kids. With the never ending rain at the moment and J just having another growth spurt it was an obvious yes please. Last year we were out no matter what the weather as the girls behave better when we are out running around, come rain or shine... if we have the correct clothes to keep us dry.
 
We were able to pick the colour we wanted for a trouser and jacket set. J chose a royal blue.
 

Monday, 7 December 2015

I met Father Christmas at Hamleys... again!

Last year our visit to see Father Christmas at Hamleys was amazing. So much so I blogged about the whole experience here. I know it is hard to find somewhere so magical that when I found somewhere I wanted to shout it to the rooftops. This year we returned again expecting the same standard. How disappointed was I?
 
It was the same set up of the elves meeting us, taking us upstairs, dinner, Christmas list writing, stories with the big guy, and then 1:1 time but the magic just wasn't there. This is what happened this year, compared to last year.

Wednesday, 2 December 2015

Geronimo is coming back for 2016!

Earlier this year the girls attended their first festival, Geronimo. They had so much fun they didn't want the day to end. From dancing to being monkeys to playing with wooden trains, riding donkeys and practicing their circus skills, there was so much to do we didn't have chance to do it all. You can check out our day here.
 
Well, we have just heard the amazing festival is returning next year (2016) and we've been asked to be ambassadors again. We are so excited! It will be held at Tatton Park in Cheshire again on the 29th and 30th May BUT also adding another venue at Harewood house in Yorkshire on 1st and 2nd May.

Wednesday, 25 November 2015

A holiday wish: Getting splashed by Shamu

J's wish this holiday was to get soaked by Shamu. Her wish was granted.
 
We visited SeaWorld Orlando not really knowing what to expect after Disney. We were pleasantly surprised. The parks were quiet and clean and the animals were impressive. I am not going to go into the documentary bad naming SeaWorld, I think that has already done its damage, and I saw nothing that should be bad mouthed to be honest. Yes, the animals should be in the wild, but seriously now let loose? I'm not so sure. They seem happy and if an animal doesn't want to do something, they don't force. (An example was with the Dolphins, needing rope as reins put around the nose, one dolphin shook its head to refuse and the rope was thrown backwards and something else was done instead).
Instead I am going to capture the memories we experienced.

Monday, 23 November 2015

Our Florida holiday - a quick intro...

We have just got back from the very hot and sunny Florida. We went away for two weeks with Daddy M's parents again just like two years ago, but did things differently this year. We learnt from what went well and what didn't with three generations under one roof from our holiday together two years ago. The main thing was that second car... its a must so we can do different things and get our own space. As much as I love them, its great to get out and about just the four of us too, for example Disney World.
 

Thursday, 5 November 2015

Our magical Elf door!

Halloween is officially over so that means I can now talk about Christmas without being told to shut up! Yeay! I love Christmas and I am always thinking of different ways to make it magical for the girls. This years plans involve a door. A very special door indeed....
 

Tuesday, 3 November 2015

Instant Flower Press by Interplay

S loves picking flowers. Any little walk she does or play in the garden involves picking flowers. They soon die and need to go in the bin. When I got the chance to review the Instant Flower Press by Interplay I thought it was a great idea so we can keep the little tokens she gifts us.
 

Tuesday, 27 October 2015

Nick Jr Pumpkin Party at home!

Wow, our Nick Jr pumpkin party was a success!! We had invited J's friends along but due to short notice and a non convenient date it turned out to be just the girls. This would not stop our fun though. We made the cakes the night before, a perfect after school activity.

Sunday, 25 October 2015

NF Adventure Farm at halloween

This Halloween we were invited back to National Forest Adventure Farm. We went last year for our very first time, and loved it. There is so much to do when you get there it was an obvious yes please. We knew from experience to go dressed up as although it is on the farm there is also lots of themed activities going on too.
 
 
J recycled her Zombie bride costume she made last year, whilst S went back as the same witch as last year too! Oh we do like to recycle here! They were then set for the day!

Friday, 23 October 2015

Aliens Love Dinopants review

S is dinosaur mad. I mean she loves them. Anything dinosaur related and it is a must have. When we were asked if we wanted to review Aliens Love Dinopants it was an obvious answer. Yes please. S is still going through her phase where she doesn't like pants on. So it has an added bonus that hopefully as the aliens and dinosaurs love pants so much, hopefully she will learn to love hers too and keep them on.

Thursday, 22 October 2015

Rambling on about Benefit Britain!

I got stopped by one of those people you tend to avoid in the high street. You know the ones? The ones that are always trying to get you to sign up to something or sell you something. This guy wasn't trying to get me to sign up to anything though. All he wanted was my signature. Why? Something to do with tax credits. They have started a big petition nationwide to stop it being taken away or reduced. Usually my head is in the sand when it comes to anything benefit wise as we are not entitled to anything. Nada. And yes, I have thrown a little strop when our child benefit was removed too. I gave up my job relying on that child benefit money when J turned one. Daddy M is the one and only breadwinner bringing in a regular and reliable income which has to cover everything the four of us ever needs. However, if his income was split between the two of us then we would be entitled. How is that fair? So yes, I have thrown a strop sometimes over benefits when I couldn't afford to go for a coffee and cake with friends.

Nick Jr Pumpkin Twitter Party and giveaway!

We are going to be #NickJrPumpkinParty at home hosts and we can not wait. The party will be on twitter on Monday 26th October between 5-6.30pm with the main host being @UKMUMSTV. So why are we hosting this twitter party? Well its Halloween week which means lots of Halloween premiere episodes of your children's favourite shows as well as half term, so that's an excuse to party, right?
 

Wednesday, 21 October 2015

Doc McStuffins Pet Vet Twitter Party

Last week saw us host our very first twitter party. I was very nervous as I didn't really know what to expect apart from it being very fast moving. Due to this and the time of the twitter party we hosted our party before the event so I could concentrate on tweeting. The kids were full of excitement as they walked home together from school. J was able to show off her new toys from her birthday whilst the adults had a cuppa first. Then it was straight into party time, Doc McStuffins Pet Vet style!

Wednesday, 14 October 2015

J's 6th Birthday

J is officially six. Seriously where has the time gone? Last year we celebrated her fifth birthday early in the summer holidays making use of the garden we used to have, and the summer weather. This was great until it was her actual birthday. She wanted another party as all kids do, and wanted another big party. It just wasn't going to happen. This year it meant that she wanted that big party as she had to wait even longer for it. For the past six months she has been talking about her birthday and how amazing she wanted it. I think we did a pretty good job at making it THE BEST SIXTH BIRTHDAY she could wish for.
 

Monday, 12 October 2015

Doc McStuffins Pet Vet Twitter Party

I am pleased to announce I will be hosting a Doc McStuffins Twitter party. Tune in on twitter on Thursday 15th October between 1pm and 3pm. Its our first twitter party so we are very excited. You can follow along and join in with other hosts too, just follow @UKMumsTV on twitter and make sure you use the #DocMcStuffins hash tag. There will be prizes to win by answering questions or taking part in games and activities online.
 

Thursday, 8 October 2015

MACHINES Congleton... a gym like no other!

Since the start of the school year I have been taking some time just for me. I was planning to keep it a secret and just see where it took me but I am enjoying it so much I just had to share. If you are local to Congleton or Macclesfield it may benefit you too! So, what have I been doing for just one hour a week that is improving my mental well being AND my physical health at the same time?
 
I am attending a gym like no other, as it is more like a studio. There is no treadmills in rows nor the posers that like to show off in front of the mirror, neither is it so big that you are just a number. When you join you become a member of the family, somebody worthy or their time to train you correctly. Sounds corny doesn't it? But it works. The place is Machin-ES .


Wednesday, 30 September 2015

Creating a Cardboard Dreamhouse

This month the girls were invited to design their ideal dream cardboard house. We were given a large strong cardboard house and the rest was dreamt up in the girls heads. Both girls are so different and couldn't decide on a "frog themed" house or a "princess fairy" house, so they did both. The fairest way to stop the squabbling was to give two sides to each girls.
 
 

Tuesday, 29 September 2015

Making Invent-a-scent perfume with Interplay and Giveaway

J is such a girly girl. When we were asked to pick a kit to review with Interplay it wasn't hard to find something she would like. The invent-a-scent Perfume kit sounded perfect. J received a bottle of "Princess perfume" at Christmas and has recently started wearing it lots.  This kit meant she could make her very own perfume to wear.
 

Monday, 21 September 2015

Couch to half marathon?

I have been very quiet on the blog the past few weeks. I am still here, I promise! I have been suffering from a bad chest infection that just does not seem to want to disappear. It started end of August and after three weeks of a mucus cough I headed to the drs after the pharmacist recommended it. The nurse saw me and is unsure if its asthma which could be fitness induced or an infection. She sent me away with antibiotics a peak flow checker and an inhaler. The antibiotics have now finished and the cough is still there. I felt better though and was told I could still do my walk/run programme but to listen to my body. The asthma check up is in October and I am holding out to then....
 

Thursday, 17 September 2015

Exploring the Food Hall at Selfridges

I love food. It is obvious when you see my instagram account. Not any food in particular, just good flavoursome food. It could be a good takeaway, or a nice piece of cake or even a home cooked meal. With this in mind I was invited along to Selfridges in Manchester's Trafford Centre to explore the food hall. I invited Grandma M along with me to explore as we often visit food festivals together, and thought this would be something very similar. I also left the girlies behind so I could enjoy the food without them wanting to steal mine.
 

Sunday, 13 September 2015

Roald Dahl Day Crafty Twits challenge!

We all remember Roald Dahl as the author of amazingly funny books whilst growing up. They have survived the test of time and are still very much loved now too. We had the joy of introducing the girls aged 3 & 5 to one of his books this week. I always thought they would be too young to appreciate it as they are not full of colour short stories they are used too, instead a real chapter book. HOW WRONG WAS I? They loved it. Both sat either side of me chuckling away page after page of The Twits.
 
 

Friday, 11 September 2015

BFF Tag Jewellery Review by Interplay

Our latest assignment by Interplay as an ambassador was to put BFF tag jewellery to the test. Its recommended for ages 8+ but as J is close to 6 we supervised her closely. Packaged in a bright colourful box it comes with everything you will need apart from a pair of scissors, knife, something to roll the clay out with (like a rolling pin or cup) and an oven.
 

Tuesday, 8 September 2015

Abbotsbury Swannery and Children Farm

Whilst we were in Dorset on our holiday this summer we visited Abbotsbury Swannery and children's farm making use of the Tesco club card deals again. We went along with Nana too with the hope to catch them at feeding time. We arrived around lunchtime at the Swannery and realised the feeding time was not on until 4pm. To bide some time we decided to try out the children's farm too. A little walk (longer then it makes out) down a country lane and we arrive. S was in a foul mood this day due to the lack of sleep, however she perked right out of it went she got to feed a guinea pig. Just look at that cheeky smile as she tries to force feed it a carrot...

Tuesday, 1 September 2015

Too fat to run.... the reboot...

Today is the start of September which means its officially the start of my "The Fat Girls Guide to Running" challenge with Too fat to Run. If you didn't see my introduction post I have committed the next six months to following challenges that are set in the clubhouse.  
 
This weeks challenge is the reboot. With only 4 working days left this week all we need to do is get out the front door for three of those days.
Challenge one is walk, jog or run for 10 minutes, then retrace your foot steps back however you wish to do it. Challenge two is the same but for 12 minutes before turning back, and the third is for 15 minutes. This is do-able. There is no emphasis on distance or speed, just to get out and do something.

Monday, 31 August 2015

A summer full of milestones!

This post is all about J and her new skills she has learnt this summer!

J has been taking part in swimming lessons for almost a year in the hope that she would be able to swim confidently with no arm bands for our big holiday this coming November. Usually 14 months would be plenty of time. Unfortunately her swim school changed instructors approximately six times in the 11 month period. This summer my aim was to try and get her booked in else where after complaining and just being told, "yeah we have had a high rate of staff turn over, but what can we do about it?"  

Friday, 28 August 2015

A day out at Farmers Palmers

This summer saw me and the girlies return "home" to the South Coast. We visited for almost two weeks which meant we had a lot of days to fill with entertaining the girls. One of these days I wanted to try out Farmer Palmers. My niece and nephew loved it there when they were younger so wanted to treat the girls to a fun packed day too.
 

Thursday, 27 August 2015

Beefeater review

This summer we were invited to Beefeater to try out their summer children's menu. We headed to Heald Green branch so we could watch the aeroplanes fly over as we ate. The children's menu comes with a FREE Mr men or Little Miss toy with every two or three courses purchased, with a different one each week. This is only during the school holidays, so it is nearing the end now. However the menu has also been refreshed, and I must say it is very child friendly.  




Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Longleat Safari Park in the rain

If you follow me on Instagram and Facebook you will know we have recently been away to the South Coast. We spread ourselves wide whilst being based in Poole taking advantage of being closer to some attractions that we love. Whilst down there we booked to go to Longleat Safari Park. We went last September with a group of family, which you can read here. This time around it was just myself and the girlies. We took advantage of the Tesco club card deals again and pre-booked the date before even going down south. The day we decided to go the weather was not on our side. It was cold, wet and miserable and it was due to stay all day long.
 

Tuesday, 25 August 2015

KitShack UV Protection BUFF review

This summer we were sent some pretty girly and roar-tastic buffs for the girls to put to the test. We have never had buffs before, and to be honest didn't really know they existed. BUFFs can be worn as a neckerchief, headband, wristband, mask, hair-band, balaclava, scarf,  scrunchie, saharaine, pirate cap, beanie and bandana. So many possibilities. The junior buffs from Kit shack are also high UV protection too. Perfect.

New Flair Cool Create Frozen range review

The girls enjoy watching Disney's Frozen film. They often fight over who is going to be Anna or Elsa whilst they role play. It seems that Frozen fever is still with us so when Flair asked if we would like to review some of their latest Frozen cool create collection we couldn't refuse.
 

Monday, 24 August 2015

New shoes for Back to school

Its not long now until J returns to school. All her uniform has been brought and is hanging ready but with shoes we wanted to wait until now in case she grew again over the summer. We were invited along to Brantano to get a free fitting. We usually trek into town to Clarks so was relieved to find out that Brantano offered this service identical to Clarks but on a more convenient retail park with a much wider selection including Hush Puppies, Start right, Clarks and Brantano budget range too. 

Sunday, 23 August 2015

Back to School and Back to Sleep

It is less then two weeks until the girls go back to school. This summer holidays the usual bedtime has disappeared. With lots of late and very late nights, still the early get ups, and no naps... they are in urgent need to get back to routine and settle down for some (hopefully) early nights. I also need them to get some catch up sleep for my sanity. I know I am not alone in this subject so have teamed up with Silentnight beds to bring you some tips which may help...

Tuesday, 18 August 2015

Frankie and Bennys review

Last week I was lucky enough to be asked if I wanted to be a guest reviewer on the Whats Good To Do  website. We were sent to Frankie and Benny's to try out the new menu and put it to the M test. This is what I had to say....

Monday, 17 August 2015

Snow park at Chill Factore Review

This week we took J to Chill Factore in Manchester. She has done so well with her first year of school we thought we would treat her and a friend to an hours play in the snow park with Daddy and myself taking advantage of a family pass. This meant that S couldn't go, but due to her being 3, and not liking slides we thought it was best she did a more suitable activity with Grandad M instead. Thank you Grandad. J has never had both Daddy and myself all to herself before so it was a real treat.
 

Saturday, 15 August 2015

Tara Binns Eagle-Eyed Pilot review

We were sent Tara Binns Eagle-eyed pilot book to review mainly because Daddy is an airline pilot and they wanted his opinion on the book. We read almost every night to the girls just before bed and its nice to get a new book every so often to keep our minds fresh more then the girls.
 

Friday, 14 August 2015

Learning to write.... Alphabet cards review

J has just completed her first year of school and can now read and write to the standard that is needed for her age. She now leaves notes around the house and makes beautiful cards. S loves drawing but apart from drawing spiders she has not mastered much else apart from an S squiggle. Which is about right for a three year old. Trying to get her to write her name is impossible as she refuses to copy. Due to her drawing on walls we can not leave pencils around for her to have a try unless its structured play. She will learn the hard way.... or will she?

Thursday, 13 August 2015

Pet Parade carry kit review

The girls adore dogs. We don't own a dog due to having two cats who do not like dogs, and its unfair on them. This has not stopped all the dog teddies and toys that we have seem d to accumulate though. The latest new dog to join the M household is this little chap...
 
 

Wednesday, 12 August 2015

Secret Fairy Door by Interplay

Well this review isn't going to be done in the usual way I do them by putting the girls behind the testing. Its me doing the testing this time. This is because my girlies do not know I have it yet. We have previously had a fairy door that was made out of MDF, and had a paper print out stuck on the front. The magic was there until S pulled the paper off one day, and the magic fairy door could no longer let the fairies in. Due to this reckless behaviour the fairies do not want a communal fairy door, but one especially for J's room. This will make it easier when the tooth fairy is needed too. However, we are due to put a lock on J's door so S cant get in, but that is still on the to-do list and I wouldn't want this special fairy door to have the same fate.
 

Tuesday, 11 August 2015

Too fat to run?

If you follow me on Instagram, you will know I am attempting to become a runner by all the treadmill pictures. I am taking place in a sponsored colour run on 31st August in Warrington, where you can sponsor me here. I am not a natural runner, and when I do it its a mind over body battle on which will last the longest.
 

Monday, 10 August 2015

#WIN Peblitown review and Giveaway

Have you heard of Peblitown from Toys Alive?  To be honest I had not heard of it before being asked to review it. All I was told was that it uses an app on your tablet to interact with real toy pieces for interactive play. My girls love playing with the I-Pad and with the summer holidays and the inevitable rainy days it was a no-brainer to put it to the test.

Saturday, 8 August 2015

Aber Falls

This week saw us driving across to Wales to review the YHA near Bangor. We made the most of the nice weather as we knew it wouldn't be around for long so headed down the extremely narrow roads to Aber Falls. The girls enjoyed the waterfall so much at the three shire head that we wanted to see another. The photos for this day out speak for themselves, we had so many smiles and giggles just by letting the kids be kids. I hope you enjoy our memories....

Being a stay at home mum is tough!

Ok, my official job tittle is a "stay at home mum". Some think it is easy. The dream that we all envisage. Baking sweet cakes, singing nursery rhymes and attending play dates all with happy smiles and no tantrums. That is the dream. I have tried being a part time working mum so have dabbled at both.
 

Slim Canvas Prints by Snapfish

I love photos. If you haven't gathered that by now, what world do you live in? I love beautiful scenery, and photos with my girls in. We live in a fairly big house with a lot of cream walls. They are crying out for memories to be placed on the walls. We had a beautiful canvas print of the girls done for S's first Christmas, and a couple of smaller ones of them on their own which suited the home we lived in then. We now have too much wall space and they look lost. One of pictures just don't do them justice.
 

Friday, 7 August 2015

YHA - Youth Hostel Association family review!

This summer holidays with the building work taking place in the garden, and Daddy M having to study for his twice yearly exam in peace, has meant that I have had to take the girls out of the house. Thankfully the Youth Hostel Association (YHA) asked us if we would like to review a hostel of our choice. I have stayed in hostels as a child with schools and remember having ten giggling girls to a room. This had me wondering how family friendly it would be, and so I though we would put it to the test, and if all else fails at least Daddy had some time to study whilst we had a girly break.
 

Sunday, 2 August 2015

Three Shires Head with children

Its been a long time since the girlies and myself went out for a "long" walk. J always seems so tired with school, or S refuses to leave. Chores need doing or the rain comes in. We had no excuse today though with the weather dry but overcast. I just had that itch to get outside. I didn't tell the girls how long the walk is, just that's its long, there will be sweets and a waterfall.
 

Saturday, 1 August 2015

Goldie Blox and the parade float review and giveaway

School is out and I am trying to keep J's brain ticking along during the six weeks off. I have read a lot online that kids always step backwards during the big summer break, so I am keen on getting her thinking a lot. We read every day, allow her some time on the I Pad for learning apps, and just ask her a lot of questions. Interplay sent us Goldie Blox and the parade float to review and I thought this would help us along with keeping her thinking.

Friday, 31 July 2015

Brewers Fayre Chefs Counter Review


Eating out with children can sometimes be a nightmare. We have been there in the past, you order food and wait an age for anything to be served up. Children are sometimes that hungry and irritable they just need food. Straight away. Often when they are like that and we are caught out and about we usually end up a fast food outlet, however, I have just found out Brewers Fayre now do an all  you can eat buffet which is instant pub food. No waiting to be cooked and served up.
 

Thursday, 30 July 2015

Summer holidays with friends

This year is officially the first real summer holidays we have had. OK, we have had them whilst J attended nursery but school is official, you cant just pull them out for a day out with no worries. We also get into a routine of not having them around 5 days a week for 8 hours a day, so when they are suddenly thrown back into the mix with the attitudes they have learnt from school, and the new found boredom of having nothing structured to do we are left pulling our hair out.
 

Tuesday, 28 July 2015

Chill Factore Giveaway

We have an amazing giveaway for you and your family this summer. Hopefully the rain will pass and you will need to "chill" by the end of the summer holidays, or the rain will still be pouring and you are looking for somewhere to escape it but still have fun. Well, look no further then Chill Factore Snow park and play.

Monday, 27 July 2015

Cafe Rouge Review

That's it... schools are officially out. The rain is pouring. What can we do to entertain and treat the kids?  (Plus a little treat for us too) Well... Café Rouge have just launched their new children's menu and until the 31st July 2015, kids eat free. What a launch. We can not grumble at nutritious delicious food especially if its free. Even when the launch period is over it still wont break the bank either. We put S and fussy J to the Café Rouge menu to get their verdict.

Saturday, 25 July 2015

Prescription Sunglasses Review

In the spring I was offered a chance to review a pair of prescription sunglasses. I have not owned a pair of prescription sunglasses for many years as I used to be an avid contact lens wearer. I hated wearing glasses but with my contact lenses I would wear a very expensive pair of designers, although they would always be seen on top of my head keeping my hair out of my face, rather then on my face.
 

Friday, 24 July 2015

Maize maze at National Forest Adventure Farm

The maize was up and over the girls heads, the hot sun was beaming down on us. The dirt track was dry even though it rained earlier that morning. We could hear voices, but saw no one. Armed with a rucksack full of juice, full bellies and a flag on a pole if we needed help we were lost. Where were we? We were in the middle of a maize maze. Not just any maze. It was a HUGE over 3 miles worth of trail maze at National Forest Adventure Farm to celebrate JCB's 70 years.
 

Wednesday, 22 July 2015

Peek through Forest book review

We were sent Peek-Through Forest to review. Aimed at pre school children it was perfect for S. The book is written by Jonathan Litton and Illustrated by Kasia Nowowiejska. 
 

Tuesday, 21 July 2015

Rainbow Promise

Last week saw J become an official part of girl guiding. She took her rainbow promise. I was a brownie when I was younger, and although I can not remember much of it apart from the hideous brown calottes, I remember being told that I could no longer be a brownie due to my behaviour. I later re-joined as a girl guide and those memories I do remember. They were filled with giggles, learning new skills that sometimes can not be taught at school and gave me something to do after school apart from just "chilling out".
 

Monday, 20 July 2015

Dora and Friends sing-a-long and toy review

My girls have grown up with Dora since they were babies. Dora has even grown up with them, she now has a mobile phone, and bracelets in the city with her friends. If you tune into Nick Jr between 10am and 1pm this summer, you can even sing along with  Dora, Peppa pig, Paw patrol and other favourites with the lyrics on screen.  

Wednesday, 15 July 2015

Weightwatchers... week 10

This week marks ten weeks since I first stepped into my weight watchers group. Nine weeks of watching what I am eating "Weight watcher" style, but technically only six weeks actually trying due to holidays and other life goings on.
 

Thursday, 9 July 2015

Weight Watchers.. week 9

I am an every morning weigher. Every morning after the loo break and before a sip of juice goes in my mouth I am stepping on those scales. They are placed in the kitchen and on a very specific tile. They seem to be accurate. However, this week they told me I lost nothing.... they lied to me.

Wednesday, 8 July 2015

Wicked Wednesday

 
Says it all... a clear path to the kitchen through the toy room... the real picture of family life with a messy three year old and a 5 year old!
 
brummymummyof2

Tuesday, 7 July 2015

Play at Brewers Fayre

Brewers Fayre has recently gone through a new refurbishment of some of their pubs and added a brand new play area for the children. We were invited to the Coach House at the Trafford Centre for the big launch. The girlies had great fun playing in a brand new play area, meeting Dennis the menace followed by a lovely meal too.

Monday, 6 July 2015

Little Green Fingers

With summer well on its way its only natural we want the garden looking pretty. We have spent a lot of time in ours this past week and apart from the bottom half looking a mess as the builders still have not started, our section isn't looking too bad  with the wild look flowers taking over the rockery, and well maintained lawn it is looking picturesque. This will change though when the builders start. 
 

Friday, 3 July 2015

Eurocamp Avant Accommodation Review

It feels so long ago now that we were on our holiday in France. The purpose of our holiday was to review the three bedroom Avant accommodation with Eurocamp. This style accommodation is new for 2015, and we were one of the first to step inside. Our accommodation was in La Pointe, St Giles which is in Bènodet, Brittany.
 


Wednesday, 1 July 2015

Week 8 on weight watchers

This week my goal was to loose 2Ib to bring me back to my 5% total weight loss target again, which I reached just before my holidays. Unfortunately this did not happen, and I am a little stumped as to why.
 

More drinks review

My weight loss journey is now in full swing. I think I have got my small holiday weight gain back off and my energy levels are rising. My twisted knee ligament seems to have healed much quicker then anticipated too so the exercise has started again. I have chosen to start the Couch to 5k programme again as I enjoyed it so much last time I completed it, albeit a few years ago now.
 

Tuesday, 30 June 2015

Photo albums with Snapfish

Everyone has a camera these days. Whether it be with a phone, a compact camera or a DSLR. Its great photos and memories can be captioned anywhere from holidays to sports days, but what do you do with your photos once you have clicked and possibly shared on social media? The majority of ours are just stored on our computer and I dread to think what will happen if we ever get a virus or get burgled. All those captured memories lost forever. My nan asked me a few Christmas's ago what I do with them, and she couldn't believe I didn't pop them in a photo album.
 

Monday, 29 June 2015

Wood Worx Jewellery box kit review

Children often get "bored" despite the many toys, books and games they have. They don't actually mean bored when they come whining, sometimes it is a challenge they want. Something to do with a purpose. We have noticed this more and more with J recently as she is becoming older. She is closer now to being 6 then she is to 5, and needing that little something extra.

Friday, 26 June 2015

CHILL FACTORe Arctic Adventure Playground review

It doesn't often snow in England, and certainly not when there is a heat wave looming, when all you can think about is how to cool the hot sweaty fed up children down. What if I told you there is a place you can have fun and "chill out" in Manchester? Though you will still need to wrap up warm. Well there is a place that can do just that, and its just had a great new make over. Its the NEW Arctic Adventure Playground also known as Mini Moose land at Chill Factore. It is perfect for children aged 4 and under.  We actually spent S's 2nd birthday in the playground at Chill Factore and had great fun. Now its even better.
 
Chill Factore Jan 2014

Toy Post Office Review

S has finally reached the age where she likes playing with J now rather then doing her own thing alongside her. This is an age thing and yes this brings ALOT of sibling arguments. To try and alleviate the "but I was playing with that" start of an argument we have got a toy Post Office for them to play with together. So far this has worked well as one can be the post office worker, whilst the other the customer.

Wednesday, 24 June 2015

Weight Watchers Week 7 results

First of all let me apologise for not updating last week. There is a reason why I did not update, and that's because I chickened out of going to group and didn't weigh in. Big mistake I know. I have been this week though, hooray.

Tuesday, 23 June 2015

Love Marlenka Cake review and giveaway

Hands up if you like cake. Everyone I know loves cake, some like it sweet and sickly, others like it moist and subtle. I've never heard of anyone not liking cake so when Love Marlenka asked if I would like to review some, AND give some away to one of my lucky readers I just couldn't refuse.
 

Sunday, 21 June 2015

Britmums Live 2015: My weekend

This weekend I attended my very first EVER Britmums Live. As soon as I started thinking about attending events, Britmums was the top of the must attend events. I have attended a few now, including Blog camp and BlogOnMosi. So what do I think of Britmums? 

My Sunday Photo


As its fathers day, this weeks My Sunday Photo has to include Daddy M and the girlies. We did have a lovely quick look at mummy and smile photo on this beach whilst they were walking in size order BUT.... Daddy M didn't smile and instead looked like he didn't want to be there so we will make do with the backs... Happy Fathers Day Daddy M!


OneDad3Girls

Wednesday, 17 June 2015

Butterfly World Review and Giveaway

The girlies have wanted to grow their own butterflies for a few years now. Last year we came close with finding some caterpillars all over the nettles at the bottom of the garden. Unfortunately the birds soon found most of  them and they didn't have a chance to change or even grow from being tiny caterpillars. This year Interplay asked if we would like to review their butterfly world and we jumped at the chance.
 

Monday, 15 June 2015

Summer Days Out and picnics

Summer. It looks like it is here, or maybe not. The great British weather can not make its mind up which means when we have a nice day we need to grab it with both hands and make the most of it. It could be raining tomorrow. So that's exactly what S and myself did on Friday whilst J was at school. Sorry J. We grabbed it and ran to the local park

Sunday, 14 June 2015

My Sunday Photo

Whilst on holiday I did go very snap happy, hence why all my holiday posts recently (and lots more to come) are very photo heavy. I had a little browse to try and find one that took my breath away, after just stepping off the ferry and into St Malo we were surrounded by a lot of natural beauty, it was very easy to get a beautiful photo, do you think I captured the beauty? I have just started taking my camera off the auto feature thanks to the photography institute course I am doing and I can already tell the difference in my photos.



OneDad3Girls

Saturday, 13 June 2015

Noisy Dinosaurs book review

As the title suggests we got to review "Noisy Dinosaurs". Its from Little Tiger Kids and is the 'My first touch and feel sound book' range. Since we received it S has claimed it has hers. Thrown it in peoples faces to read, and pretty much not let it out of her sight. It is a real hit. It helps she is dinosaur mad anyway, but just take a look and see why she loves it so much...

Friday, 12 June 2015

Brittany Ferries with children.

We have just got back from our first family trip to France. We sailed from Portsmouth into St Malo and returned from Caen back into Portsmouth with Brittany Ferries. The flexibility to choose different return ferries made our holiday experience more flexible.
The St Malo ferry was an overnight ferry. This did have me very anxious as to whether the girls would sleep or just be too excited and be bouncing around.

Thursday, 11 June 2015

Let the wedding season start...

Where has the time gone? We are in June already? Crikey. My social media pages are filled with wedding outfits, and pictures of table decorations. The wedding season has well and truly kicked off! Daddy M and myself have now been married almost 5 years, and I would love to plan it again, and again.
 

Spinnaker Tower Review

We left early, very early on the day we needed to catch our ferry to France. This was essential to make sure we didn't miss our boat. We all know the motorway system around the UK; one accident, and it goes to a standstill. We were lucky, despite the rain our journey from the North West to Portsmouth only took 4.5-5hours with a quick stop for lunch. This meant we had a few hours to explore Portsmouth a little more. I am originally from Portsmouth but it has changed so much since I have been away. Spinnaker tower has now been built, and has been standing high and mighty for 10 years. It has been on our bucket list to visit for a few years, so this was our perfect opportunity to explore a national icon.
 

Wednesday, 10 June 2015

Weight watchers week 5 results

Wow... I have not kept to the diet at all whilst being away. I had lots of French baguettes, croissants and even more cake, wine and cocktails. Everything I should have only in moderation. Hey, its a holiday A?ND my birthday, so I allowed myself the week. In reality it turned to 12 days. Straight after my last weigh in, things started slipping the wine poured and the chocolate disappeared.
 

Wicked Wednesday

 
 
 
 

This weeks wicked Wednesday is "FACEPLANT!" It had myself, Daddy, and the Tumble Tots team in fits of laughter. She had done the course over and over again, really being a little big for it now, but as S was taking part, she could too. Over confident she became, and "BANG!" she face planted the thankfully soft tunnel.


This is how it was meant to have looked...  Jumping onto the rollers, and rolling into the tunnel seamlessly....




brummymummyof2

Tuesday, 9 June 2015

A summary of our Eurocamp Holiday in France

Holidays. The thought of them brings a smile to your face. Memories come flooding back from previous trips, and thoughts of what to do on your next break "away from it all" sets you off daydreaming. Reality... packing, planning, exhaustion and lots of washing afterwards. Is it worth it? Well, we wouldn't keep going on them if it wasn't would we?
 

Wednesday, 3 June 2015

Our Fathers day gifts

If you are a regular reader of my blog, you are well aware I like my photos. I have been called snap happy on LOTS of occasions. This I really don't mind being called, as sometimes I catch an amazing photo, and sometimes its just a blugh... With digital cameras, its easy and doesn't do any damage being trigger happy on the old click, click button. Now what do I do with the AMAZING photos once I have caught them?
 

Monday, 1 June 2015

NICI Back to school range

J instantly fell in love with her new rucksack from NICI. Isn't he the cutest? She keeps calling him a koala bear, despite him being a sloth, but she is still smitten. Its hard for anyone not to fall in love with the cute rucksack though.
 

Thursday, 28 May 2015

Lego Discovery Centre

A few weeks ago, we were invited to LEGOLAND Discovery Centre for the launch party of the new Duplo village. Unfortunately this fantastic party clashed with Grandads birthday get-together, thankfully, we were able to come and visit another day to try the new area out.
We decided to visit on a busy half-term afternoon, as it was the only convenient time we could do. As we arrived, it was buzzing, kids running around happy and excited, some intensely building models, and others waiting patiently for the 4D short film to start. LEGOLAND discovery centre is on a much smaller scale then LEGOLAND Windsor but all undercover. This makes it a great day out come rain or shine.

Wednesday, 27 May 2015

Weight watchers, Week 3 weigh in.

Last week I set myself the goal to loose 2.5Ib. This would enable to get my 5% weight loss from original body weight weigh in award. I thought it was do-able with a lot of walking thrown in, and sticking to my points. However, shortly after posting that goal, I was invited out, not for just one, but two three course meals. I didn't count those evenings, and just had what I fancied, including a cocktail and a glass of wine. I let my hair down, and enjoyed both meals because I did.
 

Wicked Wednesday


Yep... now J is at school, the back chatting is in full swing, and the tantrums if she doesn't get her own way... this tantrum??  All because she is over tired....  (the no clothes because she was eating spaghetti and meatballs!)


brummymummyof2

Tuesday, 26 May 2015

National Adventure Farm, May half term...

"I want to hold a spider mummy!" Was all I could hear en-route to National Adventure Farm. It was a big mistake telling little S that it was wild and deadly week whilst we were there, which meant they could get up close and personal with some terrifying animals.

Monday, 25 May 2015

Hungry Horse Review

This weekend after visiting Tatton Parks Geronimo festival, we didn't want to fun to finish on such a fun family day out. Instead of heading home, we headed to Hungry Horse. Brighton Belle in Winsford. It is just a 25 minute drive from Tatton park, making it a great time to stop off if heading south. Enough time for the kiddies to have 40 winks, without them being to cranky when they wake.

Sunday, 24 May 2015

Geronimo Festival review

We had been eagerly awaiting this weekend since January, when we were asked to be Geronimo ambassadors. We heard what the plan was, and it sounded like an amazing day out for families. From our experience, sometimes, the build up is not worth the event, and others, its not built up enough. Geronimo Festival, was the latter.
 
The atmosphere was relaxed. There was no hurrying, pushing, or urgency. We were amazed. We were expecting to need alcohol after the stress of a busy day out. However, the festival was spread out so we were not on top of others, which meant the children could get hands on. It wasn't too far spread out, so the little legs could still get around. It was very well thought out.

Saturday, 23 May 2015

My Sunday Photo

This week, I have chosen two photos. The reason being, I couldn't simply choose just one. When I saw them I instantly smiled. They are so full of energy. What do you think? Which is your favourite? Both were taken at Geronimo Festival on Saturday.
 
Monkey doo, climbing the nets...
 
 
Dancing catwalk
 

OneDad3Girls

Revolution Bar, Food and Cocktail review

Friday nights usually consists of myself in my pj's when the girls go to bed, and occasionally with a cheeky vodka and coke, with a film on the TV. How times have changed since parenthood, and settling down to married life. So, when Wilmslow Revolution bar invited myself and a guest to come and review them on a Friday evening, I quickly glimpsed to see if Daddy M was around for "babysitting" duties,  and snapped their hand off. A catch up with A from 3boyshubbyandme, with no children around, a cheeky cocktail, and good food was well over due.

Friday, 22 May 2015

Whats the time? Learning to tell the time...


The girls are becoming more and more aware about time. What time is it? Is a constant saying in our house, so when Little Tiger Press, offered us to review "What's the time Clockodile?" We kindly accepted.

Thursday, 21 May 2015

Styal Mill, enjoying the great outdoors

The birds were singing their heavenly songs, as the soft breeze cooled us down on the warm Sunday morning. We were in good spirits celebrating Grandad's birthday a day late. The girls were happy to be outside roaming, as us adults enjoyed the slow easy paced Sunday walk and catch up.

Our half term plans...

Wow, it doesn't seem that long ago that we had our last half term does it? Where did that time go? You can see what our plans were here...
We have two weeks off, which is great, as the second week is usually quieter, as some schools only get the one week. So what do we have planned?
 

Wednesday, 20 May 2015

Weight Watchers- week 2 results

Lasts weeks weigh in really surprised me with how much I lost in such a short space of time. Considering when I was on the 5:2 diet, at the 10 week mark I had lost 8.5Ib, which you can see all the results here.

Wicked Wednesday


This weeks Wicked Wednesday, is a shot that I know most parents will nod their heads at... knickers and tights removed as soon as they walk through the door....
S is a streaker... if she had her chance she would be starker's all the time. We have managed to get clothes on her, but these days it HAS to be a dress, and if she co operates, a t shirt too. I'm not sure if this is part of her Kidney reflux showing, or just a three year old thing, but she hates anything on her bottom half. We have been known to be out, and about, and then realise she stripped her undies off before leaving, and therefore, commando... and yes one of these times was at a build a bear party, where she had to sit cross legged on the floor...
We have had stern words.... and now she is allowed to go bottom commando at home when we have no guests, but if we go out, or have guests, they have to go back on... If you follow me on instagram, you will see on some photos a well placed mug or hand to hide the rudies....  I can not be alone?? Surely??

brummymummyof2

Sunday, 17 May 2015

Not long until Geronimo

Wow, its really crept up on us. Geronimo is here with us next weekend. Feels so long ago now, back at the end of January, when we were asked to be Ambassadors.

Saturday, 16 May 2015

Lottie, Light House Keeper Doll Review


Come on in to read the adventures of Lottie Light house keeper with J and S.... a story by a 5 and 3 year old about their dolls.

Friday, 15 May 2015

Help break a bad habit


From drinking too much to exercising insufficiently, there are many unhealthy lifestyle habits which can greatly increase the risk of serious illness if not tackled effectively. Unfortunately change can often be challenging and many people find that their good intentions to get in shape or kick a bad habit fail within a few days, leaving them miserable and guilty. The support of relatives and friends is vital in helping loved ones 'stay on the wagon' when they are trying to achieve positive change. Find out how you can support the people you care about to overcome these common poor habits.

Thursday, 14 May 2015

Kids dont come with a manual

The girlies are squabbling again. The high pitch scream, and the heavy foot steps means one thing... Mummy is having to play referee again. Welcome to the M house. This happens around... oh my gosh... too many time a day. Either this, or the "pleeeassseeeeee....... but why not?" Oh, and don't let me get started on the continuous foot stomping. You would think I had tweens or teens the  rate my energy levels are decreasing on a daily basis. I'm looking more and more worn out as the days goes past.. Look... don't I look exhausted?  And we don't even have a baby in the house any more, or even a toddler. S is a pre-schooler now, and J is in school. So why am I so exhausted looking after these two??
 

Thinking Slimmer Giveaway

A few months ago, if you follow my blog, you will remember I tried out the Thinking Slimmer SlimPod and FitPod. It worked, and my thinking towards food completely changed. You will also know that I am now back at the weight I was after loosing some. Why? Well my phone died on me, and EE had it for 3 weeks, whilst it sat in store doing nothing for 10days was sent off for repair. They gave me a temporary "smart" phone. However I was not able to download a single app, or an MP3 track. This hindered my thinking slimmer listening as I no longer had my convenient outlet to listen to the pod.

Wednesday, 13 May 2015

Weight watchers - week 1 results

Last week saw me embark on a new journey. I stepped away from the 5:2 diet which was proving more difficult day by day, with failed fasts and the weight creeping back on. A holiday looming just around the corner, and a holiday of a lifetime for our 5 year wedding anniversary in just 6 months. I wanted a diet that I didn't know much about, so I had to re study, and learn new things. This week has been a steep learning curve.

Wicked Wednesday



This #WickedWednesday post doesn't really need a dialog with it. Daddy M, trapped.... with only the TV remote and PlayStation controller to hand, he just couldn't resist a cheeky daytime game.



brummymummyof2

Monday, 11 May 2015

Crocky Trail Review

The air is filled with giggles and screams of excited children. Children falling down the revolving tubes, and mud splattered parents over confidently attempting a giddy run through. Will they make it through, without falling hard? Does it matter, if they do fall? Everyone is giggling, smiling and happy at the Crocky Trail.

Friday, 8 May 2015

Prawn and Chorizo Paella

This week I started weight watchers again. This means new recipes to try out, and new tastes for the girlies. Tonight's recipe was Prawn and Chorizo Paella. It is a big hit with ALL the family, and at only 8pp a serving, a big hit with me too. Check out J's video on how to make it, super cute, a little chef in the making...

With $2 Billion in unclaimed Lottery Prize money, what could you buy?

 
What would be the first thing you bought if you won the lottery? Come on you all must have thought about it!

We all dream of scooping the jackpot, especially if it’s a rollover. Some of us would go on exotic holidays to somewhere like the Bahamas or maybe we’d go somewhere we’ve always dreamed about visiting like Australia. Perhaps you’d go on an African safari… the list goes on.

Thursday, 7 May 2015

Mummy's Bath Time

The room was steaming up as the hot bath ran. In dropped a beautifully crafted Bath creamer. The room soon was filled with the soft feminine scent, as the water turned into a milky colour. I dipped my toes in, perfect temperature. My foot soon felt soft and smooth. Wow, these bath creamers know how to treat a tired exhausted mum.

Wednesday, 6 May 2015

Heading towards a new journey...

Today I embarked on a new journey to try and get me where I want to be. Anyone that knows me, knows I am not entirely happy about my body. When I met hubby, I was a slim size 10-12. I am now a fair bit bigger, and an extra 4 stone heavier. Having two young girls to run after, does not make that easy. At the start of the year, I attempted the 5:2 diet. This diet works if you can get through the two fast days successfully. I have had many failed fast days, and finally woke up to the realisation that after my 10 week review in March, I have since piled it all back on. This diet is not for me, for the long run.

Tuesday, 5 May 2015

Tudors on Tour

The pounding of the heavy horses feet onto the hard grass, built up the atmosphere. On top of the horses were two men dressed for battle in full armour. One added what I can only describe as a skirt to his armour. Both were armed and ready for business, and headed, head on for each other. They looked like they would collide, but had a fence between them protecting the horses. BANG. The weapon hit.

Sunday, 3 May 2015

My Sunday Photo


I didn't have a wow photo for this weeks My Sunday Photo until I was watching the sneaky squirrels pinch next doors bird feed. The fuzziness is due to the rain as well as the distance and zoom, and my shaky hand.


OneDad3Girls

Saturday, 2 May 2015

Geronimo, even more fun has been added...

I have just been informed that even more line ups have been confirmed for Geronimo. We are so excited for this family festival. You can read our other posts on this exciting even that is coming to Tatton Park, Cheshire on May 23-25th here, and here. 

Friday, 1 May 2015

Natty Mat review, why i wont go out without one....

The air was filled with a general buzz, nothing really stood out, but you could tell it was a sound of lots of people having fun, mixed in with the echo of the large room, and the sound of gigantic splashes in the pool. Of course it was the leisure centres swimming pool, at the public swim session. A perfect place to take J for extra swimming sessions as it was much cheaper then the quiet, small private gym, she has her weekly swimming lessons at. When it was time to get out, that was where the fun stopped.

Wednesday, 29 April 2015

Wicked Wednesday


S is a very picky eater. Well she eats anything, if she wants to, but the amounts are tiny, I am amazed she has so much energy on so little calories. Yesterday she spotted the "teddy bear ham" in the shop, and I gave in.

Tuesday, 28 April 2015

Diggerland, Where heavy machinery and fun come together...

J eagerly went to measure herself against the minimum height board, and jumped excitedly up and down. There was nothing I could do but stand back and watch as my 5 year old climbed up onto onto the enormous bright yellow, mud covered JCB. Was she really allowed to sit behind the controls of this mean machine, and then take the controls, and drive off out of sight?

Monday, 27 April 2015

Dancing at Pineapple studios, for Annie

The temperatures outside was the hottest of the year, and as we walked in, it felt even hotter. The air was filled with excitement of both the children and the mums, some of whom travelled from miles. The sound of sweaty little feet pounding the floor, round in circles as the giddy children ran of the excess energy. It was then time to get down to business.... "It was a hard knock life".

Thursday, 23 April 2015

A day at the beach, M's style...

In half term last spring, we visited Crosby beach for the very first time. Its where my logo badge was captured. It was a great day out, albeit very muddy, when we were not expecting mud. You can read about it here. We had so much fun, that we decided to go back again this half term, with some different friends then last time, with 3 boys. Crosby beach is famous for the 100 cast iron statues of naked men, which the girls found hilarious last time.
 

Wednesday, 22 April 2015

Wicked Wednesday


J having a paddy as she is cold... a real "I told you so" moment. She got soaked in the sea, when we told her not too, she had to strip off on the beach, and wear my hoody... she has got that moody teenager look worked out, and she is only 5!! 

brummymummyof2

Tuesday, 21 April 2015

FARM Jigsaw and sticker book review

Just before half term, we were sent this Farm Jigsaw, and sticker book by Little Tiger press, to review with S. It got a little battered by the post, but inside was still perfect condition.


Inside the box was a well made floor puzzle, with 36 pieces. When I say well made, I mean durable, and not likely to break unless chewed and munched on. It was pretty much solid. We have had many floor puzzles, and can tell when they will last, this one will. It also comes with a sticker book, with pages that match up with the puzzle.


S wanted to do the puzzle first. She loved matching up all the different animals...


...But we made the edges first, so we knew how big it would be, and roughly where everything would be..


She LOVED it, it kept her concentration, and she completed it all, with only a little bit of help.


Once it was completed, there was another activity... on the border was animals she had to find within the picture. Again S loved this activity, she even started counting them.


After the puzzle, we opened up the sticker book. Immediately, S recognised the backgrounds as the same as the puzzle.


In the sticker book, there is a few lines, to tell you what your child needs to add to each page. S really enjoyed personalising her own farm, putting the animals in her very special places.


So, what did S think of this activity pack which retails at £8.99 ... well I think you can tell she gives it the thumbs up.. You can buy it from here.




*We were sent this pack in return for an honest review, all words, pictures and opinions are my own.