Friday, 22 July 2016

Review: Geronimo Festival Tatton Park 2016

Last year we were very excited to be asked to attend Geronimo Festival at Tatton Park near Knutsford. Geronimo is an annual festival held in the summer filled with fun and activities for famillies, including a CBeebies stage show, various activity zones, food stands, bouncy castles and much more.

We love taking the kids on days out. Although Warren and I both work a lot and have a lot of "extra curricular" going on, every minute we spend with the kids is not wasted. We often take them out to eat, to shows and to festivals - Geronimo is definitely one that we look forward to. The day was lovely - sun in the sky - perfect ice cream weather.

Unfortunately on the way our car broke down. However, for once, we were up and out early, so the AA man picked us up, took us back home, and we left in our other car. I am sometimes very proud at how laid back we all are. Parenting is a tough job, and sometimes it can feel like the world conspires against you when you have plans - but you know what, we all just took it on the chin and got on with it - and had a lovely day!

So, we started our Geronimo festival a little later than planned, but it didn't matter. First thing we did was watch the CBeebies stage for a while. Hook, Line and Sinker were on from Swashbuckle. They were lots of fun and seeing as though it was getting on for dinner time we decided to have a look around the food vendors. The kids settled on pizza and me and Warren shared a steak muffin (barm, bap whatever you want to call it!) The queues were quite long but we didn't mind too much as we were sat in the sun. Once we were fed we headed to the bouncy castles. Unfortuntely we had to queue for a while there too, but once they were on they loved it. When the man blew the whistle for them to come off, Rosie ran and hid (typical Rosie.) He had to run in and get her!

We then went to the petting zoo area of the festival. We saw tortoises and lots of bugs and creepy-crawlies as well as snakes and lizards. The staff were brilliant, letting the kids handle the animals whilst teaching them all about them. We also watched a sheep being sheared live on stage. It was really interesting to hear from a farmer and talk about the history of sheep and their breeds. However, the kids were bored of "all the talking" and just wanted to play, which is fair enough. We then walked through the craft area and sat down on the grass to watch Dick and Dom on the stage. We ate ice creams and relaxed for a while. Overall, we stayed there for about three hours. We really enjoyed our time there and had a great day.

We are really looking forward to attending next year. It is definitely one of the highlights of our year with the kids.

Disclosure: We were invited to attend Geronimo free of charge, all words and views are our own.

Review: Kids Clothing from House of Fraser

We were delighted to be asked to review some kidswear from House of Fraser. We love House of Fraser and it was great to be able to give Emily a go at picking her own clothes out online. She is 12 now so she is at the age where she has her own taste and no longer wants to be dressed or told what to wear by yours truly!

Her tastes tend to be different from mine. She likes dark bold colours, hoodies, baggy jeans, trainers. It's all fine - I don't mind what she wears I think it is important that she is able to express herself in any way she needs to.

The first item she ordered was a Bench hoodie. This is lovely and warm and really suits Em. She does wear a lot of hoodies, even in the summer, and this has become a firm favourite of hers. It is navy with the green Bench logo across the front. I really like this hoodie - it really suits her.

She also picked out a Superdry hat. This is grey and also looks great with the hoodie. She regularly wears hats. She tends to tuck her hair underneath them. I also had a try-on of this one as I reckon that I am a secret cool cat.... (just kidding - clearly I am way past all that...)

We really love these products. The kidswear selection on the House of Fraser website is also great - it was really easy for us to browse through the products and pick a couple of items for Emily. I am a big fan of online shopping anyway as I get hot and bothered in shops - shopping this way was perfect for us.

Disclosure: We were sent these items free of charge for the purpose of this review, all words and views are our own.

Review: Mr Nutcase Phone Cover

As this is the age of gadgets and electronics obviously we need protection for these items. I have an iPhone 5 and haven't had a case for it. I knew it was only a matter of time before it would get damaged if I didn't get round to picking one. I was delighted to be offered to review a personalised case from Mr Nutcase. Mr Nutcase offer all kinds of personalised products from cups to cushions to phone covers.

I did wonder what I might like to have as a picture on my cover. I hate to sound mean but I didn't want the kids on the phone - we have pictures of them everywhere, including on my phone itself. So I chose something a bit different, something iconic and important to me:

Who and what the heck is that, I can hear you asking - and why one earth is it important to me?

Well, that is a mural on what is left of the Berlin Wall. I think this photo was taken a while ago as I know that this mural is now suffering from the passage of time and erosion. The mural depicts the Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev and East German leader Erich Honecker. The kiss that is depicted was a true fraternal kiss, a symbol of comradely solidarity between the two communist states. Of course the kiss meant communist rule for years, years of hardship, deaths at the Wall and a broken East Germany dominated by Stasi spies. It is no surprise that this mural is called "God, Help Me To Survive This Deadly Love."

 I adore Berlin. I love German and Soviet history. So this is why I have this picture on my case.

The case itself is excellent. It is durable and touch and the print on the cover is brilliant. I love it.

The website is easy to use, simple to upload a photo and match it to the cover. This cover cost £19.99 and protects my phone really well.

Disclosure: I was sent this phone cover free of charge, all views and words are my own.

Monday, 11 July 2016

Review: Num Noms

We were delighted to be sent a sample of some Num Noms. The kids are obsessed with them and couldn't wait to get their hands on them. Num Noms are little scented collectible treats in the form of food, with fun cute squishy cases. They come in a variety of scents and colours and are so much fun. The ones we opened in the video below are the Series 2 mystery packs - ours contained a special edition yellow stamp and a chocolate scented lip balm.
As part of this review we did a short unboxing video. The kids LOVE unboxing new toys and of course they  like to watch Youtube videos of people unboxing toys. I literally picked up my phone and filmed them opening the boxes and their reactions. I'll think you'll agree - they are both naturals on the camera (although of course I am a little more than biased being their mother!)

The girls absolutely loved making the video, and they love their Num Noms too!

Disclosure: We were sent the Num Noms free of charge for the purpose of this review all words and views are our own.

Review Breakout Liverpool

We were very excited to be asked to go along and review Breakout Liverpool.

Breakout Liverpool is a live escape room game where players are given 60 minutes to solve a series of clues to lead them to breaking out.

On this occasion, I was the babysitter (the breakout rooms are not really for younger kids) so I stayed at home with the kids and let Warren, Emily and Scott (Warren's brother) go to try this. I was a bit gutted not be able to go, but Warren said that it was so good he would definitely go again, so that is our next date night sorted! This review was obviously written in collaboration with Warren - he told me all about the experience.

The concept of the game is fairly simple. You and your group are locked in a room for one hour. The aim is to solve a series of puzzles and mysteries to escape. The room that we chose to try and solve was "Confidential."  The room was large and reminded them of a CIA office - it had some filing cabinets, cupboards and a couple of tables. It was very minimal and actually realistic in terms of it being somewhere you might need to break out of.

The puzzles and clues were very varied. Some were made for the more logical mind and others for the type of person that thinks outside the box. Warren solved many of the logical clues, and Emily the less logical, more abstract clues. (I won't add in spoilers here - you can go and try for yourself!) Needless to say the puzzles were exciting and you have to use lasers, UV lights and magnets to solve some of them.

Overall, Warren, Emily and Scott said they had a brilliant time. They weren't really sure what to expect as they had never done anything like that before, but it was great to be able to work as a team to solve puzzles to break out of the room.

I know what you are thinking.... well.... did they breakout?

Prices for the rooms vary depending on how many people enter. For the game we played in the room with three people, the cost would have been around £16 per person - Warren assures me that this would be worth every penny. Breakout would work well for works parties, stag or hen parties or even birthday parties. Emily is 12 and she really enjoyed it - the website recommends kids be aged over 10 as the puzzles are quite complex.

I'll be honest, I am looking forward to going here... maybe the next time me and Warren get a free day.

To book your own room visit their website. 

Disclosure: We were invited to Breakout Liverpool free of charge for the purpose of this review. All words and views are our own.

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