9 December 2018

Robin Hood and the Babes in the Wood at Nottingham Playhouse

Last weekend we were invited to see the opening night of this year's pantomime at the Nottingham Playhouse, Robin Hood and the Babes in the Wood.

You may remember last year we were invited to see Cinderella; it was the first time my children had seen the Christmas panto and it was such a wonderful experience, so I was really looking forward to seeing it again this year.


27 October 2018

Pumpkin Picking at Maxey's Farm Shop 2018

It has been our tradition of the last 5 years to visit Maxey's Farm Shop in Kirklington to pick our Halloween pumpkins. What started out as a small field at the front of their shop has fast grown into one of the biggest pumpkin patches in the UK.

Although we are usually wrapped up well at this time of year, perhaps with a hat or at least wellies, this year saw my daughter in a t-shirt and shorts and us basking in 23 degree sunshine; oh global warming, you cheeky thing, you!

The field this year stretched as far as the eye could see, full to the brim of pumpkins of all shapes, sizes and colours.

Finding that perfect one is never easy and we only had half an hour to complete the task, as we'd visited after school.  My daughter had her mind set on a white one; we still have a similar specimen sourced from Maxey's 2 years ago, I'm not sure whether that makes me frugal or a hoarder but it is miraculously still going strong.

In 2016, ours was the only was the only white pumpkin available; this year however, there were plenty to choose from and they were all laid out in beautiful lines cutting through the rest of the traditional orange beauties.

My daughter spent ages finding her perfect, as she called it 'bibbity bobbity boo pumpkin'. My son, less discerning, pretty much chose the first one he picked up and looked at, a bit like when we go shopping I guess.


22 September 2018

Following the Hoodwinked Trail Around Nottingham

A few years ago we got to see the super Zebra Art in Southampton, this year Nottingham have been lucky enough to have their own wonderful art installations in the form of the Hoodwinked Robins.

These quirky, cute and brightly coloured feathered friends have really bought the city to life and I have loved seeing them on my way to and from work and when I pop out at lunch.

So I took the kids to see them and we followed the trail around Nottingham, it was great to visit places we don't usually see.

We started at the train station....


4 August 2018

Nottingham Forest - Football and Family

Last season, I headed down to the City Ground on a typical English day, cloudy, sunny with a chance of rain, to watch my first ever Forest match, I absolutely loved the buzz around the ground and seeing the way it bought people together.

After much internal debate about whether I could manage it on my own, I decided to take my children along for the next home match. Thankfully, they loved it too and despite being sat in the cold, they loved the excitement of the game and listening to the cheers, chants and boos of the crowd.

One thing that occurred to me that night however, was that I was possibly one of the only women there alone with their children and it got me wondering why? Is it really just 'a man's game' as I'd heard often from those around me at my first match?

Undeterred, we kept on going and the more we went the more we loved it. I sometimes got annoyed at the the occasional archaic comments, but we didn't let it spoil our enjoyment.

We'd wrap up warm when it was cold, I'd take a blanket and hot chocolate and we'd sit there and be a part of the fun. What I loved most was that it gave us something to look forward to as a family; something that we could all get in to.


17 July 2018

The Alchemist Nottingham - Review

A few weeks back, we were invited along to The Alchemist in Nottingham to sample their food and explore their kids menu.

When The Alchemist first opened here, I have to admit, I thought it was just a place for adults; an extravagant cocktail venue, not particularly suitable for the mini folk.

But it appears my first impressions were off and the team invited us along to find out just what they have to offer for the little people as well as us grown ups.

Located in the old Prudential Assurance building, one of Nottingham's finest example of Victorian architecture, the sympathetic interior stylings of The Alchemist made much better use of the space than previous inhabitants had done.

The internal design made great use of an alchemy theme, the walls covered in scientific diagrams and the shelves lined with glass flasks and tubing. Even with the presence of a few hen parties, it still felt pretty chilled out. We were seated in a booth and it felt like we were in a little private bubble of our own.

The children's menus come in a little packet with some crayons, it isn't a huge menu but then kids menus never are; however with a choice of wraps or a bento box, it really didn't need to be as these will satisfy even the fussiest eaters in my opinion.

The kids picked what they wanted and set about colouring in, drawing and playing noughts and crosses. I loved that were were several things for the kids to do in their activity books and it pretty much kept them occupied until our food arrived at the table.


5 July 2018

Almond & Coconut Choc Chip Cookies - Gluten Free Recipe

As I have a bit of a sweet tooth, I have been trying to find some more gluten free cake and biscuit recipes, so when I came across this one I knew I could adapt it and make it something special.

If you love coconut and almonds with a little chocolate chip hit then these are for you, they are kind of like a macaroon with a biscuit twist, everyone in the family loved them, including my normally coconut avoiding children.

gluten free almond and coconut cookies


15 June 2018

A Look at Sneinton Market in Nottingham

Back in its hay day Sneinton Market in Nottingham was considered one of the best markets in the county, a Penny Lane style market that was always busy. Chat to any member of my family and you will hear stories of how great it was.

With the rise of the supermarket though, places such as Sneinton Market became run down and a hub for vandalism and up until a few years ago it was a sad site for the most part.

But with lots of small businsses making a come back, we are now lucky enough to see the start of the regeneration of this once thriving part of Nottingham.

27 April 2018

Disney on Ice - Worlds of Enchantment Review

A few weeks ago, we were invited to see the new Disney on Ice Worlds of Enchantment show at the Motorpoint Arena Nottingham.

Both of my children have always been massive Disney fans and with the show falling on my son's birthday, the answer was an easy yes, so we headed there after some birthday tea.

I love watching shows at the arena and on an unseasonably warm day it was nice to be inside in the cool.


2 April 2018

Our Favourite Toys from Chad Valley plus Giveaway

We have had an awesome time as part of the Chad Valley Play Panel and have been given the opportunity to review some great toys.

Here are a few of those we didn't review on the blog as well as our Top 5 of their current spring selection.


17 March 2018

Our First Ever No School Snow Day

I have been meaning to write up our snow day for the last few weeks but time has kind of run away with me.

On the Thursday we woke up to a thick blanket of snow. Hoping for a snow day we waited and waited for school to message to say they were closed, we were ready and waiting by the door to head out when they finally messaged us at 8.05.

25 February 2018

World Book Day with Asda - Review

World Book Day! These three words often strike fear into the hearts of parents across the land.  We all know the books our children love to read, but with lives ever increasingly busy making an outfit isn't always easy. Plus if a sewing machine is as alien to you as it is to me, then double-sided sticky tape and velcro can be our saving graces.

But have no fear this year Asda have come up trumps with a great selection of outfits, characters from popular books that have been around for years and then some more modern day ones too.


14 February 2018

Learning Through Play with Chad Valley plus Giveaway

I’ve really loved the Chad Valley toys that we have been sent being part of the play panel.  The main reason being, that in each bundle has been something that’s reminded me of my childhood.

We were sent some of the new selection from the 2018 range and there are some absolutely fantastic items included; toys that reignite my love of play and allow me to reminisce and enjoy time with my children.

Included in the most recent play package was the amazing 6 in 1 Multi Games Table, a 100 Piece Styling Dolls Head and the Be U Jewellery Bead Tree Set.

23 January 2018

Beko DPHR8PB561W Heat Pump Tumble Dryer Review

When we moved into our home three years ago, we inherited a loud old tumble dryer that a member of the family was about to throw out.

It sounded a lot like a small plane taking off, the door at one point had to be taped shut and it was probably the least efficient white good in the house.

So when it seemed to get noisier, I knew it was only a matter of time before it would come grinding to a complete halt.  Lo and behold, it did just that halfway through drying a load of sheets.


15 January 2018

Star Wars Toy Collection from Hasbro - Review

Star Wars has long been an obsession in our house, with my son loving the movies and getting most excited about the latest release. With the arrival of Episode VIII in Deecmber just gone, these toys couldn't have come at a better time.

Star Wars Forces of Destiny: Rey of Jakku and BB8 Set - £24.99

My daughter immediately bagged this doll and she absolutely loves it, especially as it comes with BB8 who is a great little character. The doll has a twist action similar to some of her Barbies which means she swipes her lightsaber just like in the movie.

She is very realistic and my daughter has been so in love with her that she came to watch The Last Jedi with us.  I love this character and it is great to have another strong female lead in a film. Princess Leia lead the way in the original trilogy and now we have Rey to carry on the torch of the Light Side. 

This figure is part of the Forces of Destiny range which accompanies a series of animated shorts showcasing heroic women from a galaxy far, far away. It's great to see these female characters from the Star Wars universe being given equal standing with their male counterparts.


13 January 2018

Beautiful Winter Light at Rufford Abbey

Last weekend we headed to Rufford Abbey for a walk to blow away the cobwebs. I love Rufford, it is a beautiful place that my children and I have spent many hours visiting.

With the sun low in the sky it created wonderfully atmospheric conditions for some beautiful winter photos of my two favourite people and our one of our favourite places to visit.

Here are just a few and I think you'll agree this time of year is the most perfect for some wonderful pictures with the most beautiful winter light.


6 January 2018

Chad Valley 3 Storey Glamour Dolls House Review

I vividly remember tearing the wrapping paper from the dolls house my Grandad lovingly made for me back in the 80s.  I still have it today, and despite my daughter repeatedly asking about it, I have been a little apprehensive about passing it on to as it is very precious and small hands sometimes get a little bit too excited.

So when we were sent the 3 Storey Glamour Mansion from Chad Valley at Argos, my daughter was ecstatic. I'm not sure what I expected the finished article to look like, but it certainly a grand affair. It stands taller than my daughter and each floor is the perfect size for an upright Barbie.