Sunday, 30 November 2014

My Sunday Photo / The Black and White Photo Project #20

I'm linking this up to PODcast's Black and White Photo Project.


The Week That Was #46

Last Sunday, we were up early for horse riding. Miss C got to ride Jocky and she was definitely happier on him. She was trotting without holding on to her reins with her hands in the air! I asked about joining in with her lessons myself but I think I'll wait until the New Year...or until I can buy my own hat. After lunch, my friend came over with her daughter and we took the kids for a scooter ride. Z went down a big hill and in a "You've Been Framed!" moment, he fell off the scooter when he was trying to stop. He wasn't hurt so we laughed quite a lot.

On Monday, it was back to school and college for us. The light at the end of the tunnel is in sight; only three more Mondays until we finish up for Christmas. I had a pretty hard day at college. It was full on. I was ready for bed when we got home!

On Tuesday, it was my half day at college. It went in pretty quick. When I got home, I got on with some more of my coursework and then headed to school to pick up the kids. We came home and did their homework. Miss C has a reading test on Friday so we practised all of her words. Her reading is really coming on!

On Wednesday, it was placement day and the day went in really fast. I'm really enjoying my placement as there is something different every time I go. When I got home, the kids were finishing off their homework. We sat down to have dinner and then went to bed early with a story.

On Thursday, Husband took a half day at work as my friend who picks the kids up was celebrating their daughter's birthday and couldn't collect the kids. The kids were playing when I got home and I was exhausted. We decided to order Chinese for dinner which the kids were very excited about.

On Friday, it was my day off. I dropped the kids at school and headed to the shops. Black Friday had hit every shop in town. Thankfully, it wasn't too busy when I was there. I came home and got on with some college coursework. I picked the kids up from school and we came home to chill out until dinner time. Z had his extra karate lesson which he went to with his best friend.

On Saturday, Husband was up early for work and we were up early for karate. After lunch, Husband took the kids out so I could get on with some more college work. I don't like doing it at the weekend but with only three weeks until most of my work has to be handed in for grading, I need to. It also means I can spend my two weeks off at Christmas enjoying the break and not worrying about coursework. Husband and the kids came home after 3 and a bit hours with Krispy Kremes! I was very happy with that surprise. In the evening, we had our friends over for a takeaway and Xfactor night.

Me & Mine #11

This month we've all been hit with the lurgy in some form. I had a really sore throat and felt rubbish. College has been going well but it has been intense. There's new work to be done every day and it really is about prioritising my work load and getting it done when I get it.

Husband has been working hard, as usual. He treated himself to a fancy tablet last month so he's been using that a lot to watch his favourite TV shows.

Z was feeling pretty awful and ended up having his first day off school ever! He had an ear infection, the poor soul, so he spent the day on the couch, sleeping. He's had a few play dates with his best friend. They both share a love of Xbox and The Beano annuals.

Miss C seemed to be the only one to escape the lurgy, lucky girl! She enjoyed a play date with her best friend a few weeks ago which was a real hoot to watch. She's been loving horse riding as always and is hoping Santa will bring her a pony.

I can't believe we're almost at the end of 2014. Next month, I'll be taking my annual Christmas Day family photo. It is truly scary how fast this year has gone by.

dear beautiful

Saturday, 29 November 2014

365 Project 2014 Days 327 - 333

Day 327 - The boys chilling on the couch, enjoying a film
Day 328 - Some days you just need a cup of tea
Day 329 - Miss C wanted to take the nativity story to school to read
Day 330 - Felix just being Felix
Day 331 - A takeaway for dinner - beef satay
Day 332 - Miss C loves her baby Oleg
Day 333 - Lunch - homemade chili in a petit pan

TheBoyandMe's 365 Linky

Friday, 28 November 2014

The First Advent Calender #FlashbackFriday

As we approach the 1st of December, I already have Miss C on the countdown to open her Playmobil advent calender. She is really excited about this one; even more so than opening a chocolate one.

Z's first chocolate advent calender was in 2010. For the first two years, he had a lovely one that had a little book behind each door. Bella sent him his first chocolate advent calender which he was delighted with.

I will always remember the year Bella sent them a picture advent calender each. Miss C was 2 and therefore didn't really know the difference but Z knew. He knew it wasn't a chocolate one and he protested, "why did Bella send us joke advent calenders?"

So this year Bella has made sure she has bought them each a chocolate advent calender that cost £1 from the supermarket. No joke advent calenders for us.

My Three and Me

Thursday, 27 November 2014

Family Time on Holiday

I was lucky enough to go on many fantastic holidays growing up and I'll always remember the fun we had and the memories we made whilst on holiday. At the time I probably didn't appreciate just how hard it can be to go on a family holiday abroad because of work commitments or finances but now I have my own family, I really do appreciate and cherish our family holiday time together.

Our most memorable holiday to date was definitely Disneyland Paris in October last year followed closely by our trip to a caravan park in Blackpool for a week in July.

Disneyland Paris was a bit more extravagant than Blackpool but I know the kids enjoyed both just the same.

We went to Blackpool in the first week of the Summer holidays. We had booked the caravan park from Monday to Friday but we went down early to visit Bella and Pops in Manchester. It was great to see them for a few days before driving over to Blackpool on the Monday morning.

The kids were really excited to be staying in a caravan. I remember when my cousins, sisters and I used to go on caravan holidays with my Grandparents so seeing their faces light up when they saw the caravan reminded me of how excited we all were.

We enjoyed playing outside during the day and dancing in the show bar at night. The kids entertainment team were brilliant and Z and Miss C soon knew the dance routines well enough to join in all night...well until 9pm.

On one of the days, we headed to the Pleasure Beach. Again, it wasn't a patch on Disneyland Paris but the kids loved Nickelodeon Land and went on the Wallace and Gromit ride a fair few times.

The weather was a bit hit and miss. We had some lovely days filled with sunshine and other days where it poured with rain. I guess that is the risk you take when you have a holiday in the UK but we didn't let it ruin our time together. It just meant staying in and playing games together.

We really enjoyed the five days in Blackpool. We had lots of fun, enjoyed swimming, eating yummy food, playing, exploring and making memories together. These are the days I hope my children look back on and remember as fondly as I remember my childhood holidays.

This is my entry for the Mark Warner Family Holiday Ambassador programme.

Our Christmas Wishlist from Debenhams

Mummy Constant is hosting a fantastic competition to win up to £300 in Debenhams gift vouchers by creating a toy wishlist for the kids from the great selection of toys available from Debenhams and I couldn't not enter; I love to shop and I love to shop in Debenhams.

 Leapfrog My Little Pony game / Wood Worx Jet Fighter Kit / My Little Pony Paint and Style / LEGO Minecraft the Mine / Mondo Motors Aston Martin / Doc McStuffins Singing Doll / Teksta Kitty

There were lots of toys, games and crafts to choose from and these are items that the kids have asked Santa for this year. I know they'd love to see them under our tree on Christmas morning! (Can you imagine them actually hanging out of the tree?)

I have chosen the My Little Pony gifts and the Teksta Kitty for Miss C as she loves animals, especially ponies and cats. On her letter to Santa she has asked for a cat that "actually listens to me". Apparently our real cats aren't very good listeners! Miss C still loves to play her Leappad and as she is learning about numbers at school, this game will be fun way to learn whilst she plays.

Z adores Minecraft and he adores LEGO, so LEGO Minecraft is definitely going to get Santa big bonus points if he brings him one. I've found it hard to find LEGO Minecraft sets so it's great to see Debenhams are stocking some of the most sought after toys in time for Christmas. Z loves Aston Martins. I think he gets this from his Dad who also loves Aston Martins. I think they'd both enjoy playing with the remote controlled car together...I know they'd prefer a real one but this toy one is definitely more in my price range! Z also loves a craft activity and as he's doing wood work at school, I think he'd enjoy this jet fighter set.

Lastly, I can't forget about my niece Miss K. She adores Doc McStuffins and the songs from the show so I know she'd love this Doc McStuffins toy. She's so in to Doc, she asks to check your boo-boo whenever you hurt yourself!

That's our Christmas Wishlist from Debenhams. What would be on your list?

This is my entry to Mummy Constant's Debenhams giveaway.

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Pets #TheGallery

After Casper and Rocky had to be put to sleep last year, we said we weren't getting any more pets. Then, one sunny afternoon in July, a walk in to the pet shop changed our minds. We saw Felix with his two brothers and it was like fate. Black and white in colour, he was a combination of all black Rocky and all white Casper. He was born around about the time Casper and Rocky went to sleep.

Felix has been with us for over a year now and he has definitely made himself at home. He is the boss and likes to let our other cats, Morgan and Jazz know this. Jazz and Felix are best of chums really but Felix likes to chase Morgan and she's getting a bit old for that carry on now.

Miss C loves Felix. She still carries him around the house like a baby and he loves it. He loves to cuddle up with us in bed or lie on the couch beside us. He is a really friendly little cat.

Sticky Fingers Photo Gallery

Tuesday, 25 November 2014

Christmas Special Offers from Darceys

I'm a huge fan of Darceys scented soy wax melts and candles. They are made here in Scotland and I try to support small businesses as much as possible when it comes to buying gifts for family and friends. Darceys products are 100% natural with no colourings added to the wax. The melts and candles are all made with soy wax instead of paraffin wax that other leading brands use so there are no nasty toxins released when you melt or burn them. I became a rep for Darceys earlier in the year because I love their products so much.

Every month Darceys launch a special offer alongside their brochure filled with gorgeous scents and gifts. At the beginning of November, we launched our Christmas Special Offers and I thought I'd share them with you if you are looking for something a bit different or something a bit special without spending lots of money.

Darceys launched 8 new scents in time for the Christmas offers. They are Frosted Snowdrops, Snow Angel, Alpine Snowdrift, Christmas Splendour, Gingersnap Cookies, Apple & Cinnamon, Christmas Memories and Christmas Cabernet. My personal favourites are Christmas Cabernet and Snow Angel. Christmas Cabernet is a warm, spicy scent; just like mulled wine whilst Snow Angel is a minty scent with a hint of buttercream. It's really fresh and a bit sweet.

Here are some of the offers that are available from Darceys up until December 12th:

You can order on our website or, you can tweet or facebook Darceys and we'll let you know if there is a rep in your area you can order from. The last date you can order is December 12th as this will ensure your order arrives in time for Christmas. All of Darceys products are handmade to order so you're guaranteed something really special when your order arrives.

My favourite gift set is the burner set which costs £8.00:

All of the offers come gift wrapped in cellophane and a bow for your convenience. These are really gorgeous gift ideas that any candle lover will enjoy. And they are 100% natural so you know you are burning clean. 

Head over to my Darceys From Laura page where I have a giveaway running for your chance to win your choice of Christmas scented melts. 

Monday, 24 November 2014

The Karate Competition

Last Sunday, Z had an in-house karate competition with his karate club. After being to his first out of club competition the weekend before and winning all of his fights, he was really looking forward to this competition.

There were six other boys in his category; a mixture of orange and green belts. His Gran came along to watch for the first time. I think she was definitely more nervous than Husband and I.

Z was first up to fight and won. He was delighted. We cheered. He went on to have another two fights, both of which he won.

We were now at the point we were at at the last competition, where Z made a final. He looked nervous. We wished him luck.

Within 30 seconds, the boy had caught Z in the throat and this knocked Z's confidence. He managed to get a few points back with a kick but then he fell and hurt his side and that was him. I think he was more embarrassed than sore but the Doctor came over to check him and calm him down. There was only 4 seconds of the fight left and 1 point between the boys. When he calmed down, the ref called them to fight and the boy got a punch in. The fight was over.

Z was really upset he had lost. I think he was frustrated with himself but he was so desperate to get a point that he wasn't holding his guard and that's how the boy managed to get his punch in. We found out later that the boy also goes to boxing.

We are really proud of Z. He fought really well and his drive and passion for karate was clear to see. His time will definitely come.

Sunday, 23 November 2014

The Week That Was #45

Last Sunday, we managed to sleep in until 9.15am. It was bliss! We had a karate competition to get ready for. Z did brilliantly and got to a final again. Unfortunately, like last time, he took a knock to the chest and it knocked his confidence. He was really upset and then sore when he fell to the ground as he went in for a kick. He lost by 5 points to 3 and we could tell he was really frustrated with himself. After the competition, we went home for lunch and then headed to swimming lessons. Z and I started to feel really unwell so it was an early night for us all.

On Monday, I woke up feeling like death warmed up. I was tempted to stay off college but I don't want to fall behind, especially when I have at least seven reports and two assignments due in before the Christmas holidays. After college, I picked the kids up from a friend's house. They had had a great time playing but Z was still feeling a bit unwell so we popped to the chemist to get some medicine. We all had another early night.

On Tuesday, we all woke up feeling a bit rotten. Z had been awake coughing and spluttering during the night which woke Husband and I up. Miss C was the only person who got a full nights sleep. I headed off to college for my half day which went in very quick. When I got home, I had coffee and toast and watched Hollyoaks. I picked the kids up from school and we came home to do homework and watch some TV together.

On Wednesday, after being up most of the night with Z, we decided to keep him off school and get him to the Doctors. This was hard for me because, as much as I hate seeing my child unwell and his health always comes first, I hate missing things. I was supposed to be at my placement and missing a day of college is like missing a week of school. Anyways, it did give me the opportunity to fill in all of my paperwork and plan my next 5 weeks at college and on placement. Z had an appointment at the Doctors and it turned out he had an ear infection. We came home and I let him lie on the couch until we had to pick Miss C up from school. Thankfully she seems to be the only one who is well in the house at the moment.

On Thursday, it was back to school for Z. He was feeling much better in the morning which was a relief to us all. My day went really fast and I was exhausted when I got home. Miss C decided to build a den in the living room which looked really cosy! We all had an early night.

On Friday, I dropped the kids off at school and headed to Asda for my shopping. I love my Friday off! I got all my college stuff prepared and then picked the kids up from school. They were both having friends over after school so I picked them up too. The boys played Xbox whilst the girls played dress up and horses. I ordered pizza for them for tea and they had a pizza picnic party in the living room. They were all shattered by bedtime.

On Saturday, we were up early for karate. After karate and lunch, we decided to do some Christmas shopping in the form of stocking up on booze for the festive period. We had a yummy steak pie dinner and then cuddled up to watch Xfactor.

My Sunday Photo / The Black and White Photo Project #19

Linking up to The Black and White Photo Project hosted by PODcast.


Saturday, 22 November 2014

365 Project 2014 Days 313 - 326

Day 313 - Miss C has a thing for One Direction at the moment
Day 314 - How she still has space with all those toys, I don't know!
Day 315 - Z working hard on a school project
Day 316 - Miss C was in a stable apparently
Day 317 - Spaghetti with thai inspired cod
Day 318 - After fruit loaf for snack at nursery, I just had to get my own
Day 319 - Miss C had made a cosy bed in my washing basket

Day 320 - Z at his karate competition
Day 321 - Miss C had a trip to the library and got some new books
Day 322 - Z reading his Beano magazine
Day 323 - Z was off school as he felt really unwell
Day 324 - Miss C made herself a den with my cushions
Day 325 - Z and his best friend (who you can't see) making funny faces
Day 326 - I picked up some Christmas movies for just £8 - bargain!

TheBoyandMe's 365 Linky

Party, Party, Party from Orchard Toys - Review

The second game we received in our Orchard Toys delivery a few weeks ago is Party, Party, Party! This is a game that I have bought as a gift but I've been itching to get it for Miss C to play, so we were really happy to be offered it for review. It looks like such a fun game!

Party, Party, Party! is suitable for 2-4 players and is aimed at ages 5-9. I feel the age range is pretty spot on for this game. The game encourages social skills, turn-taking, counting skills and observation skills.

Inside the box you get:

A jigsaw playing board
4 handbags
8 character pieces and stands
28 picture cards
A dice

The idea of the game is to fill your handbag with 5 accessories and 1 present and then head to the party in the middle of the board. Play starts with the youngest player. As you move around the board, you have to collect the accessories you land on, determined by the number you roll on the dice and the picture on the playing board. If someone already has the accessories you land on then you have to wait until your next turn. If you land on a white square with a pink arrow and a mobile phone picture, you have to call another player and you can tell them to lose an accessory. If you land on a white square with a pink arrow, you can choose any accessory to pop in your bag. If you land on a dropped handbag square, you have to lose one of the accessories in your bag.

Miss C was very excited to get the little handbags out and choose her character. Z was also excited to play. It might be seen as quite a girly game because of the handbags and the girly themed accessories but Z didn't mention it. He just loves a good board game. Miss C got a bit competitive and enjoyed phoning Daddy to tell him to lose something from his handbag. She wasn't so keen when she dropped her bag though!

Party, Party, Party! is priced at £11.75 which I feel is a good price for the game. The pieces are well-made and the concept of the game is really fun. It's a great family game!

There are lots of games and jigsaws available from Orchard Toys that would suit children from as young as 18 months right up to age 6. There aren't many games aimed at the older children in the family however, Z really recommends the World Map Puzzle and the Great Britain and Ireland Puzzle. The detail and information on both of these puzzles is fantastic and they'd make a great gift for children who are interested in Geography and the World and really handy for any school projects.

My own personal recommendations would be Can you Guess?, Greedy Gorilla, Animal Safari and Magic Cauldron.

You can also check out Orchard Toys Top Ten Christmas Gifts for some inspiration too.

Are you a fan of Orchard Toys? Which are your favourites?

We received Party, Party, Party! for the purposes of a review. The opinions expressed are my own. 

Friday, 21 November 2014

The November we got Snow #FlashbackFriday

Apparently it is going to get pretty cold in the UK next week. Whether it will or not will be decided then but I remember back in 2010 when it did snow in November.

Z was pretty excited to see the snow again. He wanted to build a snowman (don't tell Anna!) but there wasn't enough snow. He had fun running around in it though and making small snowballs.

Miss C was pretty indifferent about the snow situation. This was her first experience of snow as a toddler. She looked at it, stomped in it and decided she much preferred a dry ground. A bit like me really. I'm dreading the weather turning bad, if it does. Bring on Summer.

My Three and Me

Thursday, 20 November 2014

Me & You #11

The dreaded lurgy has found its way in to our house which means I haven't had time or the acceptable appearance to take a photo of Husband and I in time for this month's Me & You post. Not to worry, once we're feeling better, I'll get one for November 2014 but in the meantime, I'm sharing this photo of us in November 2013.

I don't think we knew we were getting our photo taken and that's why I really love this photo. It's completely natural. We were laughing so hard and I think it shows us as a couple for what we love doing; laughing and having fun together.

And we were probably drunk as skunks!

dear beautiful

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Being a Parent #TheGallery

Becoming a parent is exciting
It also fills you with dread
What am I supposed to do with this baby?
What if I drop it on its head?

Becoming a parent is an eyeopener
There's no instruction guide
The baby is crying or cooing
And often you want to hide

Becoming a parent is crazy
Often cause you are sleep deprived
The baby is always awake it seems
Or maybe it sleeps without closing its eyes

Becoming a parent is joyful
Especially when you see that first smile
The sickness, the sleepless nights and poo
For that one smile it was all worth while

Becoming a parent
Time doesn't stop
The hands turn faster
On the life clock

Becoming a parent
You blink and they've grown
They are no longer babies or toddlers
They've got a mind of their own

Being a parent to my children
Is such a fulfilling duty
For there is love, friendship, wisdom
Strength, courage and beauty

Sticky Fingers Photo Gallery

Playmobil Advent Calenders

Miss C was super excited with her Playmobil advent calender last year. Behind each door was something new and exciting to add to her Playmobil range. She was especially excited by the horses!

So she was definitely in high spirits when her Playmobil calender arrived for this year. The benefits of being Playmobil Playologists means we get to see their advent calenders before they come in to the shops or online.

This year we've received a Christmas themed Playmobil advent calender. You can also get the Unicorn Fairyland calender, the Dragon's Treasure Battle calender, the Pony Farm calender and the Police calender.

Behind each door is a special Playmobil toy relating to the theme of the calender. That's 24 days of new Playmobil! The calender also comes with a cardboard scene of the theme of the calender. So in our Christmas one, there is a living room scene with a Christmas tree and snowy garden outside.

The Playmobil calenders cost around £18.99 so they aren't cheap when you consider the £1 chocolate ones you get in the supermarket. However you do get lots of lovely little Playmobil toys and characters which are much better than more chocolate for the children!

Miss C can't wait until the 1st of December and neither can I as this set includes a Santa, his sleigh and a reindeer which is something Miss C asked for on her Christmas list.

If you are looking for some funky stocking fillers then you should have a look at the brand new PLAYMOhair beanie hats. They come in four different colours and when you put them on, it looks like you have Playmobil hair!

We received the Playmobil Advent calender for the purposes of this post. The opinions expressed are my own. 

Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Funky Giraffe Giveaway

Funky Giraffe believe that babies can look stylish with their funky bandana style bibs. The owner of Funky Giraffe says, "the idea behind Funky Giraffe is that dressing your child should be a pleasure and not a chore. I provide the knowledge of textile quality, our team of inspired designers provides an exciting range of products, we price them sensibly – and you get what every customer dreams about: real style, top quality, excellent value." (

My children are now too old for bibs, (although the way Miss C eats a bowl of spag bol, I could be convinced otherwise) but I know that these bibs are something I would have bought for them when they were younger. They have some really lovely and quite funky designs. I love the white roses bandana bib! Funky Giraffe also sell personalised items, socks, mittens and burp cloths; definitely baby essentials! 

I'm hosting a fantastic giveaway where you could win yourself £20 to spend on the Funky Giraffe website.

Simply fill in the rafflecopter form below in order to be in with a chance of winning!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Good luck!

This giveaway is open to UK residents. The prize is £20 to spend on the Funky Giraffe website. No cash alternative. If you choose to spend the £20 on bibs, they must be chosen from any of the bibs in this selection. The giveaway will run from 18.11.2014 12:00am (UK time) until 29th November at 12.00am (UK time). The winner will be contacted within 48 hours with details of how to claim their prize. I am not responsible for issuing the prize, this will be done by Funky Giraffe. I am simply hosting the giveaway. 

Making a Will for my Family

I'm ashamed to say that, even now that we are parents and have been for almost 8 years, we still haven't made a will. I guess we don't really want to think about what ifs and who would get what, however it is an important document that we really need to sort out as soon as possible.

How do you even go about organising a will? Personally, I would go to a reputable solicitor to make sure it is done correctly. It is an important document that has to be done properly because the last thing I want is my family having to deal with solicitor negligence because the will wasn't done correctly or is invalid.

There are a number of charities that help people to write their wills such as Will Aid or Will Relief Scotland. Cancer Research UK will also help those people over the age of 55 with writing a will. There isn't a cost for this service however a donation is suggested.

A family member of mine did their will using a pre-packed kit from WHSmith for just £30. This cheaper option might suit some but for me, I'd be happy to pay for someone to do it for me to make sure I've covered off everything I need to.

Having looked in to a will, it needs to include things like:

  • Who would look after the children if they are under 18?
  • Where would pets go?
  • What would happen to any property? A house or car for example.
  • Funeral requests.

It all seems a bit morbid but it's better to have these decisions in place so we know that our wishes will be respected. 

Have you organised a will yet or is it something you aren't too worried about?

Featured post.

Monday, 17 November 2014

The Week That Was #44

Last Sunday, we were up early as Z was heading off to Dundee for a karate competition and Miss C had horse riding. Z was going with his best friend as I didn't fancy the drive and keeping Miss C entertained myself. Miss C rode a different horse today but didn't like him to much as he wouldn't canter. Mind you, he's 35 so I can't say I blame him. Z had a brilliant time in Dundee. His karate club won against the other team and Z won two of his fights and drew one.

On Monday, it was back to college and school. I had a long day at college and it was dark by the time I left. It made me feel very festive and I can't wait for Christmas now. The kids had finished their homework when I got in and were ready for dinner. I don't like this whole seeing them for an hour but it will be worth it in the long run.

On Tuesday, I had my half day at college. I managed to get all my reports done so I'm all up to date for deadlines which means I can start my next report to get it out of the way! I picked the kids up at school and we walked home for a cupcake treat. I'd bought them at college where they were raising funds for Children in Need. I helped Z with his Sir Alexander Fleming project and I learnt lots about penicillin!

On Wednesday, it was placement day. These weeks are  just going in so fast! The kids were watching TV and enjoying waffles when I got home. We sat together and watched some more TV before dinner and then played a fun game of Scaredy Cats from Orchard Toys.

On Thursday, it was day two of placement. Husband took Felix to the vet to have his boosters and the vet told him that apparently shop bought flea repellents no longer work as the fleas are immune to the stuff. So Felix came home with the vet's flea stuff that costs £30.00 a pop! Apparently he needs it once a month just to be on the safe side. My face looks sceptical right now! The kids were watching TV when I got home so we made dinner and then had an early night as we were all shattered.

On Friday, I dropped the kids off at school and headed to Asda to do my shopping. I spent the day sorting out the house and catching up on Hollyoaks. A very relaxing day off! After school, the kids got changed and played for awhile before dinner. Z went to his Friday club with his best friend.

On Saturday, we were up early for karate. Z did well as he practised for his competition the following day. When we came home, the kids decided they wanted to write their letters to Santa. After lunch, we headed to the horse shop to get Miss C's hat checked and to pick up some riding gloves for her. She chose lovely purple ones with horses printed all over the gloves.

Sunday, 16 November 2014

Saturday, 15 November 2014

Scaredy Cat from Orchard Toys - Review

With only 39 days until Christmas Day, the lists for Santa will be well under way and I'm sure your lists will include all the latest gadgets, gizmos and Frozen related toys if our lists are anything to go by. And that's just mine and Husband's!

As much as the fancy new toys and gadgets are great, I do like to include a game or jigsaw from Santa in the Christmas gifts and one of the best places to get games or jigsaws for younger children is Orchard Toys. They kindly sent us some of their older games to review in the lead up to Christmas; Scaredy Cat and Party, Party, Party. The kids wanted to play Scaredy Cat first.

Scaredy Cat is a counting game but also encourages colour recognition. It is suitable for 2 - 4 players and aimed at ages 4 - 10. In the box you get:

  • 3 Scaredy Cat cards
  • 6 picture pieces to make up a Scarecrow picture
  • 41 crow cards

Scaredy Cat is really easy to play. You place all the cards in a pile, face down and players take it in turns to pick a card from the pack. If they get a card with crows on it, they place that face up in front of them to keep. Each crow card has a different number of crows on them which encourages counting. Each number is the same colour so for example, if you pick up a card with one crow on it which is a yellow card, all the crow cards with one crow on it will be yellow. That way, you can use colour recognition instead of counting with younger children.

If you find a Scaredy Cat card then you have to return all of your crow cards to the pile, along with the Scaredy Cat card and re-shuffle the cards. Play then moves on to the next person. If you find a card with a picture from the Scarecrow picture, you place this face up for everyone to see. Once all six of these picture cards have been found and the Scarecrow picture is complete, the game is over. The winner is the person with the most crows across all of their cards.

As we set it up and I read out the instructions, Z said, "it's just like Monster Catcher!" It definitely is like Monster Catcher which is one of things I love about Orchard Toys. They have some games that are quite similar but with different themes meaning they have something to suit a monster loving child or a cat loving child like Miss C. There's definitely something for everyone!

We had lots of fun playing Scaredy Cat. It's really quick to set up so it's a great game for playing after dinner, just before bedtime, to enjoy some family time together. That's especially handy for during the week when we're out working all day and the kids are at school all day and we haven't seen much of each other.

Scaredy Cat costs £7.50 so it's a great gift for your child or as a birthday present for a school friend.

We received Scaredy Cat for the purposes of a review. The opinions expressed are my own. 

Friday, 14 November 2014

Siblings in November 2010 #FlashbackFriday

The beginnings of a sibling relationship that goes from strength to strength every day.

OK so this wasn't the very beginning of their relationship, however it was as Miss C became more mobile and talkative that Z began to take more of an interest in his Sister.

I love the way Miss C is looking at Z in this photo. He's obviously telling her something very funny!

My Three and Me

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