Monthly Archives: April 2012

Rowntrees Fruit Bottles!

The boys were delighted to receive a parcel from Rowntree’s, containing their new Fruit Bottles which contain 25% fruit juice! Boo was impressed with the way the sweets arrived (and this packaging is being played with as I type!).

Fruit Bottles have a distinctly retro feel to them, but with a modern twist – they have a really fruity flavour instead of the old school articifical twang, in fact these contain no articifical colouring or preservatives! 

The sweets are a gummy jelly sweet, and Boo took great pleasure in enjoying stretching them as far as he could! Mr G remarked that the sweets were really fruity and he preferred them to other jelly sweets, as he really liked the fruity flavour! E is too young for sweets but loved rustling the bright red packet!

I loved the expressions on the bottles, there are 5 different flavours but I had to photograph just these 3 as their faces made me laugh – especially the one in the middle! I think these are really tasty and as an after meal treat we enjoyed sharing a packet as a family – the small bag can easily be shared as the sweets are very satisfying! Each small bag contains 149 calories, so  we’ve made sure we enjoyed them as a treat and as part of Boo’s very active day! You can catch up with Rowntree’s on their Facebook page and enter their competition which is celebrating all things retro in honour of the Fruit Bottles arrival! 

Disclaimer: Thank you to Rowntree’s for sending us a sample of their new Fruit Bottles, all views expressed are my own.


Anyone who follows me on twitter, may have noticed me tweeting about Cross fit, and showing quite an interest in the tweets about it from Reebok. Cross fit promises to be the ultimate work out, with no chance to get bored as the activity changes so you’re using different muscles and keeping your interest up.

I tweeted that I’d love to give it a go, but I’m just not fit enough, I was reassured to contact my local centre as they’ll adapt it to suit my level of fitness – the joy of crossfit is you can work out at your own level but still be in the class environment! I contacted my local centre, and they confirmed that it didn’t matter what level of fitness you are at, CrossFit works and is great for weight loss! 


So, my thoughts.. CrossFit is unfortunately only available in one gym local to me, and it only runs the starter classes in the early evening which with two small children is impossible to reliably get to. This is a shame, as having tagged along with my friend (who is super fit and makes me look even more ridiculous!) to a class local to her I have to say, it was nothing like I expected and the class was friendly and informative pushing hard enough that you felt it the next morning (and struggled at points in the session!) without actually injuring me! I wish I hadn’t been so terrified! Why was I terrified? I hear you cry! Inevitably, all the promotional material shows super fit men and women of all ages really going for it, and while this shouldn’t intimidate me, it did. Having once been super fit, loving working out in the gym and spending the day watching the clock for the swim or even sail after work I struggle to believe how I got so incredibly unfit!

So, any Mums or Dads sat there reading this, don’t be afraid to try CrossFit out, it isn’t as frightening as I believed. Reebok, thanks for encouraging me to give it a go, and motivating me to get out there and kick start my fitness. I wish someone would focus on encouraging Mums to get out there and exercise, and not just with their buggy!  By the end of the summer 2012, I hope I’ll be reading this and laughing at how unfit I was and how fit I am.

Please note, this is not a sponsored post, all thoughts and experiences of Crossfit are my own.

Baby Babbling with Huggies

If you’ve seen the adverts for Huggies featuring Alfie the baby, you’ll have no doubt giggled along with me! I know that I could certainly use some subtitles for what Elvis is saying when he starts to babble, as he certainly is saying something very important and will wave his hands and emphasise noises as he’s really getting ready to start talking! I find all the babbling amazing, as Boo really wasn’t a babbling baby, rather than make noises he’d express himself by screaming! He eventually started babbling, but he was about 18months when he started, he seemed to do all the physical things first – he was walking by 9months..! Elvis seemed to start babbling at about 4months, and now he’s only quiet when he’s doing something naughty!
Anyway, Huggies clearly had loads of fun filming their advert for the new Dry lock feature with Alfie the baby and his friends, and here is a fabulous film showing some behind the scenes footage:


 Don’t forget to keep up with Huggies and Alfie the Baby  on twitter!

Meet the City of Friends Stars!

Now airing in 150 countries, it is fair to say that the City of Friends is a huge sucess with its pre-school audience! Appearing on channel 5’s Milkshake show in the UK, it is a great way to start the day in a bright positive way! We’ve managed to grab an interview with Elphie (firefighter), Max (police officer) and Ted (paramedic):


Can I start by asking what made you want to join the emergency services?

Ted: My Daddy is a police officer, so I wanted to do something different, but I still wanted to help people and get the chance to drive around with flashing lights and sirens on! Being a paramedic, and getting to drive an ambulance is the perfect job for me!

Elphie: My trunk is great for helping me put out fires or helping Jumpi down from tall buildings! I really love helping people, and with my trunk becoming a firefighter seemed like the perfect option, and I love it!

Max: I’ve wanted to be a police officer since I was 4years old, and I didn’t give up until I finally made it into my dream job!

What would you say is the best part of your job?

Max, Elphie and Ted in unison: Helping People!!


What advice would you give to someone who would like to join the emergency services?

Ted: Be nice to others, and love helping.

Elphie: Be prepared to face your fears!

Max: If you want to catch thieves you need to run really fast, like I do!!

Can I ask you a question Max, what is it like to ride your Police scooter? It looks like great fun!

Max: It’s lovely, fast and really cool! A bit like me!!

Check out Max, Elphie and Ted in action with some more of their friends in this special clip:

This is not a sponsored post.

What’s the Time Mr Wolf?

I won a mystery prize via twitter last week from Orchard Toys, so imagine my excitement when a huge box turned up and Boo squeaked excitedly that it was from Orchard Toys! (He is far to bright sometimes and he recognised the logo on the tape securing the box!). We were delighted when we opened the box and discovered a fantastic children’s game:

The game didn’t stay in the box long, initially I was a bit worried as the suggested age is 5+ but, Boo was desperate to have a go! He loved setting the game up, dare I confess to being unable to actually put the board together?? Yes…I am useless at puzzles even ones with only 4 pieces, luckily Boo is much better at that sort of thing! He loved Grandma’s house and Orchard Toys send that assembled so no ‘fiddly’ bits to put together!

 The instructions suggest that if there are just two of you playing, you double up on characters but playing with just one character each kept it simple for us! The aim of the game is to be the first person to Grandma’s house, and you need to avoid the Wolf! Boo is good at counting and insisted on counting the places for each of us (probably good as I am a bit over competitive). There is a great spinner which is a clock face, and tells you when it’s ‘Dinner Time’, we had great fun asking the Wolf what the time was and when it was between 12 & 1 shouting “dinner time!”. It’s a great introduction to recognising the numbers on a clock face!

As a parent, I like the fact it is educational – counting, number recognition – and yet it also allows you to tell the story of the big bad wolf so it inspires their imaginations. Boo loves the fact it is brightly coloured, he takes part in an adventure to Grandma’s house, and he occasionally gets to shout “Dinner Time”. We love it!

Thank you to Orchard Toys for sending us such a lovely prize! Please note, this is not a sponsored post, and I was not asked to write it, I just wanted to share how delighted we are with the game!  

Please note, this game has recently been discontinued, so is no longer available online, but it may still be available in your local toy shop so have a look!

I’m supporting! With Next.

This year I’m showing my support for the athletes of the Olympic games with my Next supporters scarf! Next have designed two scarves to celebrate the British Olympic and Paralympic teams, all money raised will be donated to the British Olympic Association. The scarves cost £5 or £10 depending on whether you want a small or large scarf, and you can choose between two designs.

I was sent the Paralympic scarf, and I will be wearing it proudly all summer! Next are currently running a contest where you can upload a photograph of how you will style your scarf in their Wear it, Wave it and Win prize draw!

I love the idea of wearing this scarf to all sorts of occasions, and as it’s a British Olympic team supporter scarf, I decided to turn it into a brooch and shaped it as an English rose (well kind of..I’m still learning!!)..what do you think? 

For days when I really want to show my support, I’ve left the scarf trailing slightly so you can see the Team GB logo, which I think is slightly more elegant!

How would you wear your Next British Olympic & Paralympic Team Supporter Scarf?

The waiting game..Primary School Admissions..

I’m waiting, fairly impatiently, to learn if Boo has got into the village primary school I want him to attend. I haven’t felt so on edge since I was awaiting my A’level results and the realisation that if I didn’t get the grades I wouldn’t be going to the University of my dreams. I’m grouchy, and restless, wondering why the process takes so long, and hoping that by some miracle the heavily oversubscribed little school has space for my little boy.
If we don’t get in then what? we join the waiting list, and consider our options. Mr G and I are discussing what we will do assuming we don’t get a place, and are left with the option to put him in the huge primary which is a fairly rough and ready affair..I can’t see us doing it? 

Are you waiting to see what primary school place your child has been offered? How are you feeling?

Zoflora and the London Pet Show ’12

The London Pet Show takes place on the 12th & 13th May ’12 at Earls Court Two, London. Zoflora proudly sponsor the World of Cats and Animal Action Area, Zoflora is a disinfectant which helps you keep on top of nasty pet smells and bacteria!
Zoflora kindly sent us a sample of their spring fragrance, and we were delighted to get the chance to try it out with Boo’s new pet rabbit’s hutch.

We made sure Nibbles was safe away from the hutch and that we had enough time to ensure the hutch was dry before we returned her to it. Having cleaned out all the sawdust and hay, we diluted some Zoflora according to the instructions – and you really don’t need very much! That tiny bottle goes a very long way! Giving the hutch a good wipe, especially in the area she uses as a toilet, there was an instant reduction in the smell and instead we could smell subtle fresh flowers! Once the hutch was dry we filled it with sawdust and hay as normal, and the Zoflora fragrance was still noticeable. I love the fact Zoflora is pet safe you just need to follow the instructions and make sure the surfaces are dry before you return your pet to the disinfected area!

You can get plenty of tips from the Zoflora team at the London Pet Show, as well as tips on how to care for your pet from a variety of experts. Readers of the blog can get 20% off pre-booked tickets using code: Zoflora4 

Follow Zoflora on twitter or facebook for all the latest information, offers and competitions!

Horrid Henry: The Purple Hand Gang Rules OK! DVD Review and Giveaway!

I have to confess to rather liking the Horrid Henry cartoons, and singing along to the NAH NAH NAH NAH NAH part of the theme tune.. In the New Horrid Henry DVD, the theme tune has had something of a revamp and is slightly more grown up and certainly less annoying, so no more singing it at the top of my voice then, instead Boo is singing the new version very tunefully!

We love watching Henry striving to find the easy way to get things done, and it reminds me of the Beano comics I used to read as a child! Henry gets up to all sorts of antics, and there is plenty of adventure! I found Boo enjoyed it without getting too over excited, which with the older episodes he seemed to!

Abbey Home Media have kindly offered 5 copies of the DVD to readers of my blog who enter the following competition, just follow the simple steps on Rafflecopter below:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Easter Adventures..did we find the Gruffalo?

This was a special Easter Weekend for us, as Mr G had the entire 4 day weekend off, something which I can’t remember happening before! We had excitedly made ambitious plans to redesign the garden, redecorate the house and venture out to the beach and on one of the National Trust Easter Egg trails! Of course the weather forecast was wretched, but we managed a day of glorious sunshine at the beach. The beach provided much needed Daddy and boys time, and gave me the chance to relax watching them (mostly) happily playing!

Easter Monday, we checked the National Trust site, and our chosen trail page had altered slightly – it was showing the wrong postcode, but was still there and didn’t show any sign of cancellation. So we jumped in the car and drove to Foxbury (Nr Bramshaw in the New Forest), to be greeted with a sign stuck to a tree saying ‘Easter Event Cancelled’. At which point Boo started to cry and Mr G got out to read the entire notice. A lovely lady from the NT spoke to Mr G, and told us where the next nearest event was, but was understanding that we especially wanted to do this one as it allowed the boys to run about letting off lots of steam.

Having dealt with the tears and frustrations of a disheartened 3year old. We decided that we would make sure we had a great afternoon anyway, and after lunch Boo suggested we go and look for the we did just that..

We ventured up a woodland path..

and searched in the apparently Gruffalo’s like mud..

We followed tracks..surely they must lead to the Gruffalo?!

Well..we didn’t discover the Gruffalo.. but we did discover a muddy puddle..

and if you look closely (very closely as I took a rubbish photograph!) you’ll see that this muddy puddle was full of tadpoles!
We had great fun watching the tadpoles and talking to Boo about what will happen to them next! We’re going to venture back next weekend to see if they’re still there and if they’ve grown legs yet! 

How was your Easter weekend?