Category Archives: family

Tea and Biscuits Bingo giveaway

Did you know that this month over 100 years ago the Oreo biscuit went on sale in American shops. In the USA the Oreo is the no.1 biscuit and it is rapidly becoming more popular in the UK. Our all time UK favourites, according to biscuit studies, are the bourbon, the chocolate digestive and the custard cream. Those are 3 of the favourites in our household, so we were very pleased to receive a large free box of Family Circle Biscuits including all three, along with 4 boxes of Twinings English Breakfast tea and a Family Bingo game.

tea, biscuits and bingo

It’s always nice to take some time out for tea and biscuits in this rainy, cold British weather. And we had great fun playing bingo, with son2 being the overall winner.

tea, biscuits and bingo

tea, biscuits and bingo

I’m hosting a giveaway to win a vintage inspired prize bundle which consists of:

· A box of Traditional English Breakfast tea from Twinings
· A large box of the nation’s favourite biscuits from Family Circle
· A family game of bingo

tea, biscuits and bingo giveaway

These prizes are supplied by http://bingo.paddypower.com
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a Rafflecopter giveaway – Please click on the link to enter.

And you may see my other giveaways here.

I’d love to hear what you like to do indoors on a cold rainy day or your favourite type of biscuit?

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Disclosure.  This post mentions products I was sent for free.  All opinions are my own.

Trying out daily contact lenses

I’m shortsighted and about this time last year, I swapped my monthly contact lenses for a pair of varifocal glasses. I had previously worn contact lenses since my teens, so it was a very odd experience to adjust to the glasses. But my near vision had started deteriorating and this seemed the best plan.

However there are still occasions when I would prefer to be wearing lenses rather than glasses so I was very pleased to be offered the opportunity to try Crystal Hydro daily contact lenses for free.

Crystal Hydro Daily Contact Lenses

The package was delivered very promptly after I provided my prescription details. The lenses were safely packed in a jiffy envelope which fitted through my letterbox and the parcel tape clearly indicated that the package contained contact lenses.

The lenses are individually sealed in a saline solution in boxes of 30. I am very familiar with how to insert a lens into the eye, but if you did wish to read the instructions, you would have to remove all the lenses from the box, as they are written inside.

Crystal Hydro Daily Contact Lenses

I have now trialled the lenses for over a week and have been very happy with them. They are comfortable to wear all day long, no problems with dry eyes and I love how when you take them out, you just throw them away. No more bother with cleaning and storing overnight. And the photos below show them in my eyes. You wouldn’t know I was wearing them if I hadn’t told you.

Crystal Hydro Daily Contact Lenses

Due to my eyesight, I did have to wear reading glasses whilst using the computer, but this is just me. However it was fantastic to be able to go out for a run in the rain again without wearing glasses which I would have had to continually attempt to wipe dry. Daily lenses are definitely the way forward for me, in conjunction with glasses.

These lenses have a diameter of 14.2mm and a base curve of 8.5mm. They also have UVA and UVB protection.

The current RRP is £9.25 for a box of 30 Crystal Hydro daily contact lenses. An amazing price in my opinion, especially as you don’t need to purchase any solution either. I’ve never found lenses at this price ever and I’ve been wearing them since my teens.

I’d be interested to hear your views regarding contact lenses.

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Disclosure. This post includes a review of a product I was sent for free. All opinions are my own.

My Cupcake Toppers – the easy way to an artistic cake

Although I love baking, I’m not very artistic when it comes to cakes for special occasions, so the answer seems to be cake toppers. I was therefore very pleased to be offered a free £15 voucher to spend at My Cupcake Toppers.

I had a browse round the site and there is something for everyone and every occasion. And if you require something bespoke, they also offer a design your own cake toppers service.

My Cupcake Toppers - Minecraft

Initially I was planning to choose some Harry Potter themed cake toppers, but I then suggested that son1 have a look round the site too and we ended up swapping to Minecraft. Even so, there were three different Minecraft ranges to choose from, so he opted for Minecraft Blocks.

Having chosen the theme, the next thing to select was the finish. Son1 left that up to me.

So I added the following items to my basket, which totalled a very reasonable £14.10.
1 7.5″ edible icing disc
1 set of 30 x 1.5″ precut premium rice paper
2 sets of 12 x 2.13″ precut premium rice paper

The checkout process was reasonably straight-forward apart from a system glitch which wiped out the shipping options, but Anna at My Cupcake Toppers soon resolved that for me. Checkout has functionality for you to add a note to your order, so I was able to request the large cake topper in the diamond design from Minecraft Blocks.

The toppers arrived the very next day, packed in a cardboard backed envelope. You can’t get quicker service than that.

Minecraft cake topper

So I used the edible icing disc on a large celebration cake. It was simple to cut out and apply using a few drops of water. The boys thought it looked fantastic. Also as far as I could see all the large toppers are circular. It would be nice if a few square options could be added to the range.

My Cupcake Toppers Minecraft Cake

For the rice paper toppers, I made iced cupcakes. I used the smaller ones on fairy cake size and the larger ones on muffin size. I’ve specifically avoided using butter in the recipes below, due to one child’s intolerance. If you wish to adapt the recipes to use butter, please note that you will probably wish to reduce the icing sugar to butter ratio.

My Cupcake Toppers Minecraft Cakes

My Cupcake Toppers - Minecraft


Cupcakes

Ingredients (makes 24 fairy cakes or 16 larger)

200g margarine
200g caster sugar
4 eggs
200g self raising flour
1 tsp baking powder
few drops vanilla essence

Method

Preheat fan oven to 180 deg C.
Place cake cases in muffin trays.
Cream together margarine and caster sugar.
Beat the eggs.
Mix in the egg along with a spoonful of flour.
Sieve and fold in the rest of the flour and the baking powder.
Stir in vanilla essence.
Spoon mixture into prepared cake cases.
Cook for 20 minutes in centre of pre-heated oven.
Allow to cool before icing.


Buttercream Icing

Ingredients (sufficient for 24 large toppers)

100g margarine
400g icing sugar
few drops vanilla essence

Method

Cream margarine in mixing bowl.
Gradually sieve and mix in icing sugar, about 50g at a time.
Cream together margarine and icing sugar.
Spread on top of cupcakes.
Place rice-paper toppers on top of icing, pressing down well.
Serve and enjoy.

Minecraft cupcakes

My Cupcake Toppers - Minecraft

I did find that a couple of hours later, the rice-paper toppers don’t look quite so great as initially. Difficult to get round this, as unlikely to be able to serve immediately after icing the cakes. However all said, they are still far better than anything I could attempt to make and the children were all very pleased with the cakes. So I do recommend these toppers. Take a look at My Cupcake Toppers to find your favourite designs.

My Cupcake Toppers Minecraft Cake

And I have an offer to pass on to my readers of 10% discount off your first order at My Cupcake Toppers with code SINCERELY10

And if you live in the Glasgow or Lanarkshire area, I have some great news. You may also purchase cupcakes from sister company My Cupcake Heaven. Unfortunately for me, 100s of miles away, these are only delivered locally.

I’d love to hear about your favourite cake.

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Disclosure. I received a £15 voucher towards purchasing goods from My Cupcake Toppers. I only paid postage & packaging. All opinions are my own.

Painting with PlayColor

Bigjigs introduced Playcolor products to their range back in March of this year. It is the no mess
painting alternative and they sent me a free sample in red and gold for the boys to try out.

Play Colour

It has taken us a while to get round to trying it out, but last weekend son2 put Playcolor to the test.

Playcolor Metallic Solid Poster Paint

Son2 tested them out on his bear picture and we were both very impressed. It was easy for him to hold and use. It functions like a glue stick with a rotating mechanism and has a lid to replace after use. It dries very quickly on the paper and washes off his hands easily.

Playcolor Metallic Solid Poster Paint

So Playcolor has all of the benefits of poster paint but without any of the mess! No need for water or paintbrushes and doesn’t wrinkle the paper either. Quick drying and solvent free. The range includes paints for use on paper, cardboard, textiles, and even face paints.

A pack of 6 assorted 10g colours currently retails for £5.99. Good value in my opinion and ideal for school or home use. Suitable for age 3+.

And I have an offer to pass on to my readers – 10% off your next purchase of Playcolor at Bigjigs with discount code: “GBPC10PC”. This offer can also be redeemed on Amazon, so long as you select Bigjigs Toys as the seller.

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Disclosure.  This post is a review of a product I was sent for free.  All opinions are my own.

Science experiments in the bath with a turtlemeter

I have received a turtlemeter free from Ozeri to review. I know you’re wondering what is a turtlemeter. No it is not a measuring device to check the size of turtles, although maybe I could have done with something like that many years ago on holiday. I visited a sea turtle conservation project where you get to carry the tiny turtles, only a few days old, to the edge of the ocean to release them into the wild, plus hold the heavy giant turtles.

Ozeri Turtlemeter bath thermometer

Let me tell you that a turtlemeter is a floating bath toy which is also a thermometer. The temperature displays in red if the water is too hot, above 39 deg C.

Ozeri Turtlemeter bath thermometer

And it displays in blue, if the water is too cold, below 35 deg C.

Ozeri Turtlemeter bath thermometer

However if the water is an ideal temperature, between 35 to 39 deg C, then it displays in green. Son2 likes to run his own bath now and found this fascinating. He was experimenting with different temperature ranges, checking under the taps and mixing the water round. We discovered that he had actually previously been having quite cold baths in the blue zone, so now he is going to bath himself at a much more optimum temperature. He discovered that although it floats, he could submerge it fully under the water. We discussed how it worked safely, when usually  water and electricity don’t mix.

Ozeri Turtlemeter bath thermometer

This is a great educational bath toy. And it is also an ideal gadget for a baby’s bath, although I do recommend that you still do the elbow test and constantly supervise a baby or very young child’s bath.

It has an easy-to-read LCD screen which regularly updates as it is checking the water temperature every second. It is sensor activated with no buttons or switches. You are recommended to fully dry it after the bath, to preserve battery life.

The turtlemeter is currently retailing on Amazon for £14.95. It comes with 3 AAA batteries already installed and a year’s warranty. A great product in my opinion. Ideal as a  Christmas stocking gift.

I’d love to hear what is on your Christmas wish list.

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Disclosure.  This post is a review of a product I received for free.  All opinions are my own.

The Wolf Wilder by Katherine Rundell – book review and giveaway

Son1 has received a free copy of The Wolf Wilder by Katherine Rundell to review.

The Wolf Wilders

Here is the book blurb.

Feodora and her mother live in the snowbound woods of Russia, in a house full of food and fireplaces. Ten minutes away, in a ruined chapel, lives a pack of wolves. Feodora’s mother is a wolf wilder, and Feo is a wolf wilder in training. A wolf wilder is the opposite of an animal tamer: it is a person who teaches tamed animals to fend for themselves, and to fight and to run, and to be wary of humans.

When the murderous hostility of the Russian Army threatens her very existence, Feo is left with no option but to go on the run. What follows is a story of revolution and adventure, about standing up for the things you love and fighting back. And, of course, wolves.

The Wolf Wilder by Katherine Rundell

This book is set a hundred years ago in Russia. The aristocracy send their unwanted pet wolves to Feo’s mother to rewild them. However General Rakov of the Russian Army comes saying that in future they must shoot these wolves. They refuse to comply when the next wolf arrives and Rakov returns, capturing her mother and burning their home. Feo, Ilya and the wolves set off for St Petersburg to try to free her mother, meeting friends and foes enroute.

Here is son1’s video review.

The Wolf Wilder is available on Amazon, currently priced at £5.59 in paperback compared to RRP of £7.99 or in hardback or Kindle format and published by Bloomsbury. We both highly recommend this lovely story. Targeted at children age 9-11.

And I’m hosting a rafflecopter competition to giveaway a copy of The Wolf Wilder to one lucky winner. comper friendly badge

a Rafflecopter giveaway – Please click on the link to enter.

And you may see my other giveaways here.

I’d love to hear about your child’s favourite book.

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Disclosure.  This post is a review of a book I was sent for free.  All opinions are my own.

The Royal Rabbits of London by Santa and Simon Sebag Montefiore – book review and giveaway

The latest book that son1 has received free to review is The Royal Rabbits of London by married authors Santa and Simon Sebag Montefiore.

The Royal Rabbits of London

Here is what it says inside the front cover

Life is an adventure. Anything in the world is possible – by will and by luck, with a moist carrot, a wet nose and a slice of mad courage!
Shylo has always been the weakest and quietest of all of his family and his siblings spend their days making fun of him. But when he stumbles across a band of rats and overhears a diabolical plan against the Queen, it’s up to Shylo to find the Royal Rabbits of London to help save the day. Can this smallest of rabbits prove himself to be the biggest of heroes?

The Royal Rabbits of London

I had a quick read too and it really is a delightful story with an underlying theme to encourage shy children to be braver. And the illustrations are gorgeous, bringing each rabbit’s identity to life. We’ve zoomed in on some of these in the vlog below.

Here is son1’s video review.

The Royal Rabbits of London is available on Amazon, currently priced at £5.49 in hardback compared to the RRP of £10.99 or in Kindle and published by Simon & Schuster. Son1 and I both highly recommend it. Suitable from age 7 up.

Santa and Simon Sebag Montefiore are both globally renowned authors, who have each written number one Sunday Times bestsellers. The Royal Rabbits of London is their first novel for children and their first ever collaboration.
Illustrated throughout by leading illustrator Kate Hindley, film rights have been optioned pre-publication by 20th Century Fox, and the second book in the series will publish in autumn 2017.

And I’m hosting a rafflecopter competition to giveaway a copy of The Royal Rabbits of London to one lucky winner. comper friendly badge

a Rafflecopter giveaway – Please click on the link to enter.

And you may see my other giveaways here.

I’d love to hear about your child’s favourite book.

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MamaMummyMum

Disclosure.  This post is a review of a book I was sent for free.  All opinions are my own.

Gordon’s Great Escape – book review and giveaway

Although son2 now enjoys chapter books, he still loves snuggling up for a bedtime picture book story. And he was quick to spot the logo indicating that our latest one was by the same authors who wrote Supertato, a character that he enjoys. This book is Gordon’s Great Escape by Sue Hendra and Paul Linnet and we received a free copy of it to review plus an e-booklet of balloon activities.

Gordon's Great Escape

This is what it says on the back cover.

You may think being a balloon is all parties and floating about.
But have you ever thought about  how dangerous and adventurous a balloon’s life can be?
You haven’t?
Then it’s high time you met Gordon.

Gordon's Great Escape

Son2 loved listening to this book and the next day the boys had fun trying out balloon badminton from the activities booklet.

Balloon Badminton

We used actual badminton rackets, but you can make your own as per this screenshot from the activities booklet.

Balloon badminton

Gordon’s Great Escape is written by Sue Hendra and illustrated by Paul Linnet. It has been published today and is currently available on Amazon for £5.24 compared to a RRP of £6.99 for a paperback copy. It is also available as a Kindle edition. This beautifully illustrated lovely story for young children, suitable for age 0-5 is published by Simon & Schuster.

You may see details of Sue Hendra’s other books here, plus there are games and activity sheets.

And I’m hosting a rafflecopter competition to giveaway a copy of Gordon’s Great Escape to one lucky winner.
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a Rafflecopter giveaway – Please click on the link to enter.

And you may see my other giveaways here.

I’d love to hear if your child has a favourite story?

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MamaMummyMum

Disclosure.  This post is a review of a product I was sent for free.  All opinions are my own.

Superhero Dream Team

My boys have been challenged to come up with their Superhero Dream Team which is right up their street as they are both big Superhero fans with loads of toys and books featuring the likes of Batman, Spiderman and Hulk.

So this is who they chose and why.

Spiderman because of his amazing webtastic skills.
Hulk for his amazing super strength.
Yoda because of his wise old ways even though he can forget them.
Harry Potter for his magical abilities.
Captain Underpants for being a super powered potty hero.

Spiderman and Hulk

Yoda

Harry Potter

Captain Underpants

Regular readers may not be surprised that the boys mentioned Spiderman and Hulk first, as they have featured on the blog previously.

So I’d love to hear who would be in your Superhero dream team? If you need some inspiration, try comics as your starting point. There are lots of comic book collections on the invaluable marketplace.

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Disclosure. I have not received anything for this post. All opinions are my own. 

Alfie and His Very Best Friend – book review and giveaway

Our latest free kids book to review is Alfie and His Very Best Friend by Shirley Hughes. This is the new book in the Alfie series. We used to have a few Shirley Hughes books when the boys were younger. Son2 even had a little bag of four titles which he used to love to carry round. Sadly the boys are getting too old for Alfie, so I shall be passing this book onto my niece and nephew, but first we shared this Alfie story together.

Alfie and His Very Best Friend

This is what it says on the back cover.

Alfie and Bernard are very best friends and together they have lots of adventures. Join them as they go to the library, take part in scooter races and make a very special club with only two special members! A heart-warming tale of friendship by the award-winning Shirley Hughes, creator of Dogger.

I read this book to son2. However he had already made up his mind before we started reading that he no longer likes Alfie. A shame as he did enjoy Alfie books when he was younger. But the photo tells a different tale, as you can see he is concentrating on the story, even though he wouldn’t admit it afterwards. It is a nice tale conveying the importance of friendship. And I do love the beautiful illustrations.

Alfie and His Very Best Friend

Alfie and His Very Best Friend is currently retailing on Amazon in hardback at £8.79 compared to the RRP of £10.99 and will be published in paperback next year. Written by Shirley Hughes and published by Bodley Head, a division of Penguin. Targeted at children aged 3-5. I highly recommend this book, but not for older children.

And there are some fun activity sheets to enjoy alongside the book. Son2 had a try at the maze whilst son1 did spot the difference.

Alfie and His Very Best Friend

Alfie and His Very Best Friend

And I’m hosting a rafflecopter competition to giveaway a copy of Alfie and His Very Best Friend to one lucky winner.
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a Rafflecopter giveaway – Please click on the link to enter.

And you may see my other giveaways here.

I’d love to hear about your child’s favourite book.

Visit Yet Another Blogging Mummy on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Instagram

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MamaMummyMum

Disclosure.  This post is a review of a product I was sent for free.  All opinions are my own.