Monthly Archives: February 2013

Lunch box fillers! – Deli24 Review

I often struggle with finding alternatives to go into Boo’s lunch box to keep him excited about lunch, and encourage him to eat it all! Especially when I’m then trying to abide by the school’s policies on healthy eating which rules out almost every treat! So getting the chance to review Deli24 seemed like the ideal opportunity to try something new! We were sent an impressive range of Deli24 products to try out:

Deli 24 are easy to carry sticks of meat or meat with cheese which are individually wrapped, as you can see the snacks are available to buy in multi-packs or some are available in single packs to. The snacks make the idea of eating cheese and meat fun, Boo certainly enjoyed the novelty of the snacks as a part of his lunch and has told me he thinks they’re really tasty!

There is a good variety of flavours ham & cheese, chicken and stuffing, as well as slightly spicier flavours such as sweet chilli chicken or the Pepperoni with cheese. The only flavour Boo wasn’t very keen on was the Sweet Chilli chicken, but Mr G liked that flavour so it didn’t last long! The snacks are free from artificial colourings and flavours high in protein and low in sugar.

A favourite with all the family was definitely the ham strips, and I can see us buying these again to take on family picnics!

Deli24 have lots of other suggestions for how you can use their snacks to liven up an evening meal or even as part of buffet, have a look at their site for suggestions, or perhaps suggest your own?

Organix Recipe Bases and Paste Pots – Recipe 1!

Organix have a great new range available, they’re called Recipe Bases and Paste Pots. The idea is to take the strain out of home cooking by only needing to add basic ingredients!

This post features a recipe we invented using a paste pot, each pack of paste pots contains two different flavours, and two recipe suggestions, but I wanted to show that they are really versatile.

Here’s our recipe for Goriami Lamb Casserole!

Organix Tomatoey Red Paste
200g Diced Lamb (We used organic lamb from Laverstoke Park)
1/2 Onion
2 Carrots
1 parsnip
2 Large Potatos
2 tins of Plum tomatoes (although any tinned tomatoes would be ok!)

This is an easy recipe which Boo helped to cook, we used our Home Cooker, but it would work just as well in a casserole or even a slow-cooker.

The method is really easy, chop and fry the onions until they are lightly browned, peel and cut all of the vegetables into slices (thin slices are important so that the potatoes cook!) while you are waiting. Once the onion is browned, add the lamb pieces and brown them off lightly. Once browned, add the potatoes and the rest of the vegetables on top, then add the tinned tomatoes and lastly the Paste Pot, then give it all a good stir. If you are cooking it in a home cooker once all the food was in it cooked for 45mins at 130c, but you need to check that your potatoes are well enough cooked before serving! If it is going in a casserole, 1hr would be perfect in the oven. Once it is ready, serve to hungry family, this recipe served two adults and two children.

I’m sorry our photo doesn’t do this recipe justice, as it is super tasty and very easy dish! We didn’t need to season at all which was amazing, the paste pot really worked well and it was lovely that we could all eat the same tasty meal!

Check back to read what we think of our next taste test, we’re going to try one of the curry paste pots next and I’m quite excited to see what the boys think of it! 

What’s in Your Pocket?

I was recently approached to take part in the What’s In Your Pocket? blogger challenge, it’s all about celebrating life’s little wins and we were challenged to imagine what we would do with £20 if we found it in our pocket with a grand prize of £200 being awarded to one lucky winner. This challenge couldn’t have come at a more perfect time, with a week until pay day and another child with chicken pox..we’re stuck in and feeling a bit glum. 

As we’re quarantined at the moment, I considered that I’d like some nice PJ’s to lounge about in, and found an amazing deal via Money Supermarket with La Redoute which gives you £15 off your first order when you spend £30 AND free delivery! Bargain! Sadly, I couldn’t find any pyjamas which I loved enough to part with my money, I have however bookmarked it for future reference!

I asked E (who has chicken pox) what he would spend money on, his reply “chocolate, and Mickey Mouse”. A simple request or so you would think, but i quickly realised he meant he wanted me to supply life size actual walking talking Mickey Mouse..even with my best thrifty skills I’m not sure I could oblige and I began to wonder why on earth I was even asking a 2yr old what he would spend £20 on! 

So, still sat at the laptop and no nearer to deciding what I was going to spend my money on, it occurred to me why I was struggling. Having £20 to just spend on whatever I want, is a real novelty and I’m finding it tough as there are SO many things I could do with it! I could go for a carvery dinner with Mr G for £10, I could treat the children to a new toy or new school shoes, hey even a day at a spa if I shop around. Alternatively, I could blow half on something which would make us all smile, and save the remainder towards our holiday fund, we’d love to go back to Disneyland Paris one day.

In the end, I decided to indulge our sweet tooth with some luxury chocolate from Hotel Chocolat, something we’d never normally buy ourselves! Having looked at Money Supermarket, I discovered I could get free delivery with a special Hotel Chocolat discount code, which actually meant it was cheaper for me to buy on line than drive to a store – no petrol or parking to pay for! I’ve treated us to Caramel Buttons and a Billionaire Shortbread selector (it seemed appropriate to have that!) and with the total bill coming in at £9, I have £11 to pay into our savings account which reminds me, I really ought to see if I could get a better rate to make those £’s grow faster!

Update!! Our chocolates arrived! x

So, if you had an extra £20 in YOUR pocket, what would you do with it?

Ms G xx

Disclaimer: I was supplied with £20 to participate in the competition, this post constitutes my entry, all thoughts and words are my own.

Chicken Pox… AGAIN

It honestly feels as though we’ve not had a single week where we have been germ free as a family since Boo started school, and this week is no exception. Last night, I noticed an angry looking spot on Elvis’ back, I looked closely (using a torch..) and instantly realised it was filled with liquid and therefore it looked like he was getting chicken pox..he had until now avoided them! This morning, he is covered in pox, they are all over his tummy and back, his head and a few on his face. He feels miserable and is constantly wanting to be cuddled, nappy changes are yes he spots all over.

I have liberally applied calamine lotion already this morning, I know there is lots of discussion on whether this is actually beneficial, but it certainly helped Boo to both heal spots and generally feel a bit more positive that we were doing something. Mr G has taken Boo to school as while I know chicken pox germs are in the school, it doesn’t seem very kind to knowingly infect people who may not be immune for whatever reason. So, E and I are sat at home having a warm drink while I try to think about all the things we can do to keep him entertained and his mind off itching! Oh, and take mine off itching too, as to be honest looking at his spots is sort of making me itchy remembering how hideously I had chicken pox as a child, and how I still bare at least two scars from my inability not to scratch the spots.

Ms G x


Fancy a challenge this March? – #WIHS

From 4th to 10th March the charity Care International is asking people take part in a charity walk, Walk in her Shoes. The idea is to walk 10,000 steps a day each day for one week, to raise money for Care International and raise awareness of the distance women in developing countries walk to collect water. Did you know that 6km is the average distance girls and women in developing countries walk to collect water for their families?

To register for the walk costs £15, and they’re asking participants to raise a minimum of £100. To give you an example of what Care International can do with the money raised, £100 can provide water and sanitation for a class of school children for 2 years! If you want to take part, but can’t manage the walk during the 4th – 10th, you can pick any week in March to participate! 

Disclaimer: I received a complimentary voucher in return for spreading the word about this charity event.

World Book Day Costumes from Simply Fancy Dress!

World Book Day is rapidly approaching, and Boo is going to be experiencing his first World Book Day at school! He’s already excited about the chance to dress up as his favourite book character! Simply Fancy Dress offered to send Boo a costume for us to try out and review, and having had a good look at all their fabulous costumes we settled on The Cat in the Hat as Boo is currently very keen on Dr Seuss!

The Cat in the Hat costume comes in two sizes small (age 4-6) and medium (age 8-10) with measurements available on the site. Described as a “deluxe” costume I was excited to see what the fabric and design would be like and I was not disappointed! The main body of the costume is in a luxurious fabric which is incredibly soft and feels almost like velvet. The costume is easy to climb into, and Boo managed to get in and out of it easily by himself. The hat squashes flat which is great for storage, but stands up really well just like a proper top hat when required (although we’ve adopted a more lopsided look!).

The costume fastens with Velcro, although the neck fastens with a tie (which is the only negative about the costume for me, as Boo can’t tie it up himself), but that can be easily rectified. The Cat’s tail is fabulous and caused us all to laugh, it is attached with Velcro so if pulled it detaches – ideal for avoiding any tearing incidents at school! 

The Cat in the Hat costume is very well made and unlike some dressing up outfits it is comfortable and durable enough that it has been worn for lots of play – even when we’re out and about (well, we did want to test it properly!). We are delighted with it! It can only be ‘spot cleaned’ but so far it has been very forgiving to my boisterous 4 year old! Simply Fancy Dress offer free delivery on all orders, and have a fantastic range of costumes for adults and children to suit all events!

Disclaimer: We were sent the costume for the purposes of the review.

WIN 1 of 5 Copies of The Alphablocks DVD!

The hit Cbeebies show the Alphablocks is going to be available on DVD from 25th February 2013! The Alphablocks are a great introduction to phonics and the first steps to learning to read, whether you have a child in nursery school or in reception year they provide a fun introduction to the skills they will learn at school to help them to learn to read!

Thanks to Abbey Home Media, we have 5 copies to give away! If you want the chance to win follow the steps below!

  a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good Luck!

ThePrizeFinder – UK Competitions

Fabulous Fun T-shirts for all the Family!

A little while ago we were asked if the boys would like to try out some t-shirts from Kids T-shirts who are a British company specialising in t-shirts which have great designs are fun to wear and easy to wash – essential if you have to messy boys like me!

The boys were delighted when their parcel arrived, especially Boo who at 4 1/2 has just decided he is big enough to choose his own clothes, so he was keen to give his opinions!

I was instantly impressed with the quality of t-shirt, especially the ones for Elvis they’re size 24 – 36months and have washed really well – even after being smothered in ice-cream and finger paints! 

I discovered trying to photograph E standing still anywhere was virtually impossible..I lack photography skills at the best of times and a moving subject is too much for my point and shoot photography tactics!

This ‘half pint’ t-shirt is quite possibly my favourite, it’s a great colour (although others are available to!) and I love the slogan! The t-shirts are a great fit, and retain their shape very well after washing which is essential if you’re buying for young children!

E was also sent this fabulous bright red t-shirt with Monster (or Alien as he calls it!) on the front, it suits his cheeky personality and he’s very keen to wear this one! 

I unfortunately dried this t-shirt over the radiator so it does have a crease across the image in this photo but I once it has been washed again I’m sure it’ll be back to perfect! There is something very special about this t-shirt too, the monsters eyes and teeth glow in the dark, which make it great fun and we’ve had plenty of amusement hiding under a blanket to get the monster to glow!

Boo was a more willing model, and here is posing in his hero t-shirt:

 Although he’s only 4, Boo is wearing the age 5-6 which fits him really well across the shoulders and the length is good to, but it is a bit wide on his tummy as he’s very tall and slim – just like Mr G! Boo says this is his favourite t-shirt, and he certainly seems very keen to wear it! The print is really bold and inspires Boo’s imagination as this super hero retains an air of mystery! 
Boo was also sent a fabulous biking print shirt which I’m sure he will wear loads this summer. The print is really fun and rivals some of the trendy big brands in my opinion! Photo to follow, so watch this space!

My thoughts, the t-shirts are very good quality with great original prints designed in the UK, which wash extremely well in my experience. Kids T-shirts are reasonably priced and are currently offering free postage when you purchase 3 t-shirts, which I think is a great offer! Oh and don’t be put off by the company name, they do grown up t-shirts too, check them out here!

We’ve got spots..Chicken Pox.

Boo has been off school since Friday with what I assumed was just another virus, he had a bit of an upset tummy and a temperature, so I didn’t think too much about it until lunch time yesterday when we noticed some very angry spots appear on his tummy. Instantly I thought chicken pox, it’s been going around the school for months so it would seem obvious, but Boo’s spots didn’t have the classic fluid filled appearance. “Have you been scratching Boo?” I asked, he shook his head “No, these spots are horrid aren’t they!” he replied looking down at his tummy covered in a small number of very angry looking spots.

This morning a few more spots had appeared, and after a restless night I decided that we ought to just get him checked out. A mammoth mission ensued to get to the Doctors surgery due to an accident on the main road clogging up our normally quiet village roads. Getting sent straight into the nurse Boo was asked “Erm, have you been itching these..” he looked coyly at his feet and replied “Yes..they are very itchy!” Chicken pox was diagnosed and I almost sighed with relief as they are such horrid spots I was wondering what else they might be! So with a list of advice, and a reminder to watch out that he doesn’t get infection in the itched spots, we were on our way. 

Boo is so upset about these spots, as they’re not just ugly they’re uncomfortable to, so I’m having to think up lots of busy activities which don’t exhaust him too much! So far, I’ve spent the morning building lego helicopters..which have been dismantled faster than I can build them!

Have your children had chicken pox? How did you soothe them and keep them busy?

Ms G x

Olbas Oil for Children – Top tips to help Children Sleep

“You lot have had a cold for months” remarked one of my friends the other day, and do you know what? She is so right! What’s worse is that while we can manage the symptoms during the day, night time is awful and settling the children becomes a challenge – they can’t sleep at all with stuffy noses and we’re constantly exhausted. 

 What we have found to be a total life saver during a cold is Olbas Oil for children as a bit sprinkled on a hanky and left next to the bed seems to do wonders for helping keep their noses clear.

Now, I was invited to an event late last year with Olbas Oil, but couldn’t go as we had a terrible cold..which in a way has proved to be a good thing, as now I can share this video of top tips to help your child sleep, with the knowledge that Olbas Oil for children is the remedy which helps my boys sleep during sniffles, and this is our winter must have! Infact, Mr G and I resorted to using the children’s stuff ourselves last night as we’d run out of the grown up stuff! I’ve tried lots of remedies, and Olbas Oil is our preferred choice. So, if you are suffering with the sniffles – get well soon – and check out these top tips to help your little one(s) get some sleep!