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Everyone knows that we have been impressed by Orchard Toys before, so recently when we were getting over that nasty bout of flu, we got out the New ‘On the Farm, Giant Jigsaw Playmat‘ from Orchard Toys in the hope that it would keep the attention of the Monkey and the Mouse long enough for us to sit down and have a drink!

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The Playmat is made up of 14 jigsaw pieces that fit perfectly together to give you the Farm!  The pieces are a great size! They are made of a thick durable cardboard and fit together really easily! Mouse who is 2 years old can build it on her own!

There are 12 characters include; tractor, people and animals, they all stand up too! It is a fab set and playable as a stand alone toy!

There is a massive added bonus that the playmat can also be linked to the Giant Road Jigsaw (which we already have) and it doubles the playing space!

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Well, we wanted it to entertain the Monkey and the Mouse and boy did it?!  Our living room became and city, all kind of figures and cars joined the game! The kids absolutely love it, and each time it is set up, it is set up slightly different. They can play with it for ages!

 

There is so much play to have and it encourages the imagination of both the kids and of Mummy and Daddy too! It is certainly a fab addition to the games shelf and I am 100% positive it will get played with over and over again!

 

Disclaimer: We were provided with the ‘On The Farm’ Giant Jigsaw Playmat for the purpose of this review; this does not affect our review, we remain honest at all times!
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Me and my hair have a bit of a ‘love hate’ relationship. I have long and straight hair; it has been described by many a hairdresser as ‘fine but there is a lot of it’.  I really wish I could do something with it, but lack of time and inspiration means that I tend to go for the put up and out of the way approach.

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I have tried accessories before, but none have be successful, they either won’t stay in, don’t look good or they break! So, when I was offered to try out the service at Stone Bridge, I said yes! Hopefully they would be able to find me something pretty that works!

First they asked me to fill in the ‘Tell Us More About Your Hair‘ form, I was over the moon to be able to answer all the questions, I know that sounds daft but sometimes you get to those questions where you fit into more than one answer, but I didn’t get stuck by that.  They even had ‘Fine, “but a lot of it”‘ as an answer!!

I then got an email telling me that the hair consultant recommended the Coiffure medium hair clamp in mahogany, so I sat back and waited for it to arrive.

It came quickly and well package, I felt like it was Christmas with something pretty turning up for me!

The claw is beautiful and well made. I put all my hair in it and headed out for the day. I only had to adjust a couple of times after sitting in the car and ‘resting in the armchair’. It stayed firm, made me feel girly (a feat in itself), and attracted compliments from others!

I love my new hair claw! Although in theory I am not doing anything that different from putting my hair up out of the way, I feel like I am styling it, I feel like I am doing something with it, I feel nice!

What can I say? The hair consultant got it spot on right and the product is great.

Disclaimer: I was sent the Hair Claw for the purpose of this review, however my review remains honest.

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It’s half term, I have had some time of work and I have done lots of fun stuff with the kids. but I have found myself saying ‘I need a cuppa’ more than once (a day) after a spot of entertaining Monkey and Mouse!

Through the magical world of social media I have noticed I am not alone, Mums, Dads, Grandparents and carers across the country have been saying a similar phrase after a hard days half terming!

Our household is a massive hot beverage drinking house anyway, bad news, goods news, middle of the road news all are met with the kettle being clicked on!

We have drank Tetley many times before and enjoy a variety of their  Teas (including Green and Blend of Both).

Tetley have got a new one for you to enjoy, Tetley Estate Selection is hand-picked at high altitude from some of the finest tea estates around Mount Kenya in the Great Rift Valley region to give you a tea that makes you feel like you are drinking a little bit of luxury!  It is Smooth, crisp and delicious, it is Tea only better!

This half term it has been so nice to click the kettle on, grab the dunking biscuits and sit down at the end of the day and reflect on the success of another half term day survived! So after a hard day of crafting, swing pushing and cake baking, why not try it!? You deserve a little bit of luxury!

 

Disclaimer: We were sent Tea and Biscuits for the purpose of this review, all opinions are honest

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marella__lum_alpha_blueFebruary is that month that people tend to lose sight of their healthy New Years Resolutions, hide away from the cold wintery feeling that comes just before spring and use comfort food as the only way forward!

Add to this the fact that I came down hard with the flu this week and it is is taking a few days to get back to full health, I really need something that is going to help me feel better!

It seems Water is the answer……Cue Brita and their ‘Wet February’.

It is recommended that everyone drinks 1.2 litres of fluid a day. Water seems to be the best option, it quenches thirst, it is good for your skin, it hydrates you and it has no calories!

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So I am taking up the challenge, I am going to drink the recommended amount of water and see how I feel!

I normally don’t drink a lot through the day aside some coffee, but BRITA have two products that are going to make it easier to, the Marella Jug for home and the Fill & Go bottle for when i am at work or out enjoying myself! So here goes, update soon!

 

Disclaimer: I have been set the Marella Jug and the Fill & Go for the purpose of this challenge

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You can order most things online and get them delivered directly to your door now, clothes, groceries, gifts. Do you like it? I love internet shopping, i love the convenience, I love being able to order a gift and get it delivered direct to the person if need be, I love it!

What about ordering a cake through the post though? I have to admit when I was asked to have a taste of Baker Days Valentines Letterbox cake I was sceptical, how on earth could a cake travel through the mail, enter your house through the letterbox and be tasty and in one piece?

Well I was about to find out!

So, I put in my order for a beautiful looking personalised valentine cake and sat back and waited!

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So what happened next? Well, you will never believe it, but a white box came through the letterbox, yep actually through the letterbox and landed on the mat! In the box was a small card, a packet of love hearts and a round cake tin that said just for you on it! I was worried about opening the tin, would I find a cake in there or would it be something that once was a cake?

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Much to our pleasure it was indeed a cake, and not the tiny cake you would expect from the way it had travelled, you could get 4 decent sized slices (maybe more depending on how you cut!)  and added to that; an absolutely gorgeous smelling cake at that. As soon as I open the tin the smell hit me and it made me want to eat the cake straight away, yum! The cake was a surprise for hubby, and he was impressed! The writing on it was perfect, the picture great and the fact it had come in the post really made him smile!

So it had passed the letterbox test and the attractiveness test, so there was only one real test left – the taste test! We cut into the cake, shared it out (well we all had to test) and drooled a little….it was delicious! bakerDays Cake two

To say the cake had survived the journey is an understatement, it was in one piece, moist and tasty! It was fantastic, Monkey and the Mouse both had some and enjoyed it and Hubby thought I was the best wife ever (well he thinks that anyway, but the cake got me brownie points!).  There was a small bit left that Hubby had a couple of days later and he said it was still good, hadn’t dried out at all!

This is a unique idea, something I have never seen before and something I thought wouldn’t work, but actually I have tried it and I like it! The fact you can send someone a cake even if you can’t be with them for a special occasion is brilliant! There are over 400 designs and your choice doesn’t stop there, you can have sponge, carrot, gluten free and more!

So for valentines this year, consider sending a cake – it will be worth it!

We were sent the cake for the purpose of this review, all thoughts are honest

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IzziwizziKids.co.uk was born way back in 2005 when Al Boxall-Gordon (a new mum at the time) who was finding the world surrounding children, toys and play frustrating, from this Playfest arrived in January 2011!

Playfest is a party on Twitter (Tuesday 8.30-9.30pm) and Facebook (Thursday 8.30-9.30pm),where a group of like minded people who LOVE play join together to chat about play ideas, their own fun week, occasions (e.g. Christmas, Easter), reviews, sometimes cake and more!

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I wanted to tell you that something exciting is happening for Playfest, well actually something exciting is already happening – it is growing!!

So, Izziwizzi are opening up the floor and asking for anybody who is interested to apply to become a Reviewer for the Playfest!  You don’t have to be a blogger to do it, you just need to love play, be willing to give honest feedback, be able to do video reviews and submit them on time and attend Playfest to join in and give your views!

Here is a video about what you need to do:

 

So if you fancy it, crack out the video camera, phone or you other video recording equipment and join in the fun! Find out more from the website, the Facebook page and the twitter feed!

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Tots100 has teamed up with Moneysupermarket.com to find Britain’s Best Days Out, as part of this we were really lucky to be sent a family ticket for Dudley Zoo, the only thing we had to do was decide when to go!

After the excitement of Christmas and the welcoming in of the New year, we thought it would be nice if we waited a couple of weeks back into the school term and went over to Dudley on a Chilly January Saturday, thinking it would be a fab treat for the month that is usually associated with feeling down after the festive fun, especially after heading back to work!

We also thought that if we could enjoy a day there in the cold (and I am talking really really cold) then we could enjoy it anytime!

It took us a little over an hour to get there and directing ourselves to it was easy, we were a little surprised to find it located in what appeared to be the middle of the town, but it was so easy to find and there was a car park too (£3.50 per car for the day).

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We donned our hats, gloves and grabbed the picnic and headed in! The Zoo was bigger than we first thought and there certainly was a lot to see! Even though it really was cold we got to see most of the animals, a few wanted to stay inside but that was fine because they had houses we could visit! The Flamingos weren’t playing and neither were the penguins (can’t understand why, they are from the cold aren’t they?).

There is a wide range of animals at the Zoo, ranging from the giraffes to the Meer cats, and the Snakes to a Raven (poor thing had a sad back ground but is being cared for by the Zoo).  There is so much to see and learn, you don’t even realise it is educational through the fun you are having!

The staff we met were so friendly and seemed to be enjoying their jobs too!  We took our picnic with us this time and there are plenty of lovely places to eat it! We did have warm drinks from the cafe, which was nice and clean and had a lot on offer in the way of food! We saw a Birthday Party enjoying their lunch all face painted up – lots of smiles and fun was being had by all!

There is a castle in the middle of the Zoo, and it is fab! It is really quite big and nothing like what you would expect to see on a trip to the zoo, it is awesome; the kids loved running around and exploring it, we went up the tower too and you could see right out over Dudley! Knight Leggies and Princess Mouse claimed the castle as there own and they were fighting the Mummy and Daddy Dragon with full energy! There is a tavern and a courtyard, I can see us spending a lot of time around that area on a summer visit!

So what did we think? Well we explored, we ran, we watched, we talked to the animals, we laughed, we shivered, we learnt stuff, we said we would visit again (a lot) and most of all we had so much fun!

Definitely a top day out! There is so much on offer that I think the best way to showcase it all is with this slideshow – An Alphabet Review of Dudley Zoo!

Thank you so much to Moneysupermarket.com for this day out, it really made our January more interesting! We will definitely visit Dudley Zoo again (will try summer next time!).  If you fancy a day out visit MoneySupermarket vouchers – you might find a great offer!

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