Wednesday 15 March 2023

Orchard Toys Farmyard Friends Review

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I have always been a big fan of Orchard Toys games and so I am really pleased to be getting to introduce Henry to them now. This is his first Orchard Toys game he has had to play and I was very excited to play it with him. 

The game is called Farmyard friends and is all about recognizing farmyard animals and matching. 

As usual, the Orchard Toys game comes in a sturdy box with a colourful picture on the front. I have not yet known an Orchard Toys box fail at keeping a game safely inside.

The game comes with a barn which needs to be pushed together to make it 3d. It also comes with 30 cards which all have animals on them. Some of these have red backs and some have blue backs and some yellow. 

All the animals on the cards are farm yard animals and are ones that are very easily recognized by young children. Henry knew the names of most of the animals on the cards. The animals are all really cute and colourful and very child friendly. 

The 3D barn has a slot at the top which is for the animal cards to be placed into.

There are 2 parents of each animal and a baby animal. And there are many ways that this game can be played. 

Firstly I decided to ask Henry to find the animals, for example, I asked him to find a pig and put it into the box. As soon as he started to recognize the animals, I asked him to then find the other pig, which is a way to start to learn to match. Then I asked him to match the baby to the parents. Each time we played he got to pop the cards into the barn. Which he loved doing. 

The game can be played so then the animals face upwards, or you can make it more challenging and turn the cards over so you can only see the colours. If playing alone then your child can learn to turn a card over at a time, until they match a pair. Or they can play with someone else. 

When playing with someone else, take turns to turn the cards over to make either a pair or a family. 

If you want to make the game even trickier, you can deal out one of the parent animals and these are the ones you have to match to either the other parent, the baby or as a family. 

As well as this game helping your child's memory skills, it also helps their hand and eye coordination when placing the cards into the box. This is something that Henry loves to do. 

To make the game even more fun, you can always make the animal noises as placing them into the barn! 

Henry has just turned 2 and as this game is aimed at 2 plus, he is only just starting to learn how to play games and is currently finding it more fun to find the animal and place it in the barn. I am looking forward to seeing him develop his matching skills through this game.

This game is £9.75 to buy and can be bought on the Orchard Toys website

Would your little one enjoy this game?

Thursday 9 March 2023

Tomy Toomies Spin and Hatch Dino Eggs Review

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With Easter coming up, you may be looking for toys that are perfect for alternative Easter gifts. Toomies have a toy with an egg theme that will work brilliantly for exactly this. Introducing Toomies Spin and Hatch Dino Eggs.

 As soon as Henry saw it, I had to get it out for him as he got excited and wanted it straight away. Luckily it's easy to open, and there are no batteries or setting up needed which meant he could start playing straight away.

The set comes with a round egg base with holes for the eggs to sit in. It also comes with a see-through lid. At the top, there is a button that you can press to make the base spin. This is easy to press and can be pressed with the lid on or off. Inside each Egg, it a cute little dinosaur. These dinosaurs stay inside the egg and can't be pulled out. Each dinosaur looks different and are all really bright and colourful. Henry loved that they are dinosaurs and kept going "rarrrww" with them.

The lid to each egg fits on the top of the egg base really easily and can easily be done by a toddler. 
The toy is great for colour-matching the base and lid of the egg together. This helps an early introduction to learning colour names and also matching. This is something I am currently focusing on teaching Henry so I am pleased that I can use it to help him learn colours. 

Henry who is now 2, found it easy to place all the dinosaur eggs into the base. This really helps his fine motor skills. Without the lid on, when you press the button, all the eggs come flying off and scatter around, just like they have hatched out of the Eggs. Henry loved this aspect of the toy, I think because for him this was a fun form of destruction, which he loves doing. 

Another thing I love about this toy is how it can all be tidied away and stored together. Simply place all the eggs inside and pop the plastic lid on top. 

This toy has been played with loads so far and both I and Henry both love it. I think it's a really clever toy that provides lots of fun and has great educational aspects. It is also a good quality toy that is aimed at children 12 months plus. 

This toy is £15.99 and can be bought from places such as Amazon or Argos

What would your child enjoy about this toy?

Wednesday 1 March 2023

Chicco's 2 in 1 Rocking Dino Review

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When it comes to toys, I love toys that have lots of different ways to aid learning. 

When Chicco offered me their 2 in 1 Rocking Dino, I jumped at the chance to get Henry a new toy that he would love to play with, but that would also help him with his learning through play.

Henry was super excited when he saw the box, and instantly spotted that it had a dinosaur inside and said the word dinosaur. 

When we got it out of the box, he instantly wanted to play with it. 

The first thing he did was give it a good inspection. The dinosaur itself is super cute, and a nice shade of green, it is in the shape of a rocker so when you put it on the floor it can rock from side to side. It also has 3 holes for shapes to go in. These 3 different shapes all also have different colours. Already you have lots of learning aspects here with recognizing shapes and colours. The pieces are easy to slot into the dinosaur and they also push out of the other end. 

The second element to this toy, is the balancing of the shapes on the dinosaur's back. They can be placed on in any order but if they are placed more to one side, the dinosaur tips slightly. This gives a child their first lesson in weight. The learning aspect to this type of play is huge. You get to learn about size, order, and balance, and it really helps with hand coordination and fine motor skills. When all the pieces are on, you can rock the dinosaur and hope they don't fall off, but if they do, this provides a fun opportunity to place them back on. 

The last element of play is stacking the pieces into a tower, which I think was Henry's favourite part as he loves knocking the tower down. Due to the shape, they are really easy to stack on top of each other and Henry managed this really well. 

The quality of this toy is lovely, the plastics are made from recyclable plastic and are part of Chicco's Eco range. I also love the colours of the toy. 

Overall I'm really pleased with this toy, especially as it comes with so many learning aspects. 

You can see more about this toy on the Chicco website.  

Would your child enjoy this toy?

Wednesday 8 February 2023

Win 3 Brand New Top Trumps Games

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Top Trumps is a popular card game played between 2 people and there are now so many versions of the game that they have even become something to collect. 

Top Trumps is always bringing out exciting new themes of the game and here are 3 of their latest. 

Introducing Top Trumps Spotify Music, Top Trumps Youtube Videos and Top Trumps Tik Tok Videos. 

Become the Top Trump by competing with an opponent and having a card with the best Top Trump points. These games are perfect for on the go and come in a handy little carry case, keeping all your cards together. 

With Tik Tok Trends, you can see a guide to the best Tik Tok Trends from the last few years. With categories such as Likes, Fun Factor, Global Reach and Earworm rating, this pack is sure to bring back brilliant Tik Tok Memories. This game is aimed at ages 14 plus. 

With Youtube Trends, you are playing a similar game as Tik Tok, only this time they feature the best of Youtube.  It has categories of Year, Views and Controversy and will show you 30 of the best youtube trends since it launched in 2005. This game is aimed at age 6 to adults. 

Last but not least is Spotify Music. This version of the game features all your favourite music artists. It features 30 iconic artists with some names such as Taylor Swift and Harry Styles. With categories of debut year, listeners per month, studio albums and relatable rating, you will love remembering all the facts of some of the best music. This game is aimed at 6 to adult. 

These games are all £8 each and can be bought on Amazon. 

Who would like to win all 3 of these games? 

All you have to do is enter below on the Gleam app. 

(Uk Only)

Win 3 Top Trumps Games

Monday 30 January 2023

Win Lex Match - The Crazy Cube Game

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Love word games? This head to head game is perfect for you.

Lex Match, the crazy cube game has now brought out a 5 letter word wins the game. The aim of the game is simple. Create a 5-letter word to win. But it's challenging, as your opponent can push out your letter and replace it with their own making it a race to who can create a word first. The game comes with cubes with all the letters of the alphabet on the sides of the cubes. There is also a special LEX cube which can be any letter you like. The game also comes with cards with letters on and for extra points, you can use this letter to create your word. 

The game is for all the family, but if you have younger players, you could play a 3 or 4 letter word instead. When you have finished playing the game, it simply all folds up into an easy carry case. This makes the game perfect for taking to grandparents or going on holiday. 

You can buy this game for £19.99 and it can be picked up on Amazon. 

How would you like to win the game? 

I have one game to giveaway. Enter on the Gleam App below.

Uk Only

Win a Lex Match Game

Monday 23 January 2023

5 Ways to Keep Warm Outdoors in Winter


So far this winter for us has been very confusing, it's warmer then suddenly super cold. We have just had a load of snow the last week, but already it has gone again. With this in mind, it is always best to be prepared for when heading outdoors in the winter and to make sure that you find ways to keep warm. 

My family is very much an outdoorsy type family. We love our walks and whether it is raining, snowing, or cold, we will still be out in it. 

So we are very used to being prepared and here are a few tips for you for staying warm. 

1. Buying the right coats and outwear. 

When it comes to buying your coats for yourself or the kids, there are aspects you need to think of. Is it waterproof? Will my child be splashing in puddles? Does it have a warm layer inside? Does it have a hood? There are many places you can shop to buy your outerwear but you may want to look at Lighthouse Clothing  Their coats and puddle suits all come with the above attributes making them perfect for wintery outdoor outings. Puddle suits are great for toddlers, they come with a fleece inside for extra warmth, and also a waterproof outer layer for keeping dry. Keeping them dry means that your little one will never have to miss out on going to the park in fear of a wet bum from a slide. Their puddlesuits go up to age 5-6 which is brilliant as a lot of puddlesuits stop at a young age, and as we all know, kids most definately haven't grown out of splashing in puddles at that age. 

Outerwear also doesn't have to be boring, Lighthouse Clothing have some really cute designs, and some are nice and bright which is great for keeping your eye on your little one. Lighthouse Clothing know the importance of keeping warm and dry and their coats come with hoods that are nice and snug which protect from the wind. Which is great as their is nothing worse than a hood blowing down in the wind. 

Looking for coats with pockets is also something to think about when buying a coat. It's handy for keeping a packet is tissues in, a spare pair of gloves, or even hand warmers. 

(Coat and Puddlesuit from Lighthouse Clothing)

2. Know Where Heat is Lost. 

Heat is lost through the head and the feet, also hands are very easy to get cold. That is why a decent warm hat, gloves and snuggly socks are a great outdoor winter essential. Young kids don't always want to wear a hat, but if the design is right, they may love putting it on their head. The older they get, they will love a winter hat so then they can keep nice and warm. Lighthouse clothing also sells winter warmer gear like hats, and their are designs for younger and older kids. 

(Hat and coat from Lighthouse Clothing)

3. Take a Warm Drink

It is a great idea to take a hot drink with you for after the walk, when you have kids, its generally best to save it for when back to the car, or at the end of the walk, to avoid cold outdoor toilet trips. Hot chocolate always goes down well with my family. 

4. Keep Moving

Of corse, on a long walk you may need to take breaks, but keeping moving when out on a walk will help keep you warm. Encourage kids to not sit or lie down on the floor (unless wearing a puddlesuit of corse) and know where you are heading so if you do get too cold you can easily head back home. 

5. Wearing Correct Footwear

Make sure that your shoes are waterproof. If your feet get wet, then they will be cold for the rest of your time outdoors. Your feet being cold will mean the rest of you is cold. Another tip for welly wearers is to tuck your pants into your socks is possible, this will stop your pants riding up causing cold ankles. Same for puddlesuit use, make sure socks are over the pants before putting the suit and boots on. 

(Coat and hat from Lighhouse Clothing)

Do you have any tips for staying warm outdoors? 

Tuesday 29 November 2022

Christmas Gift Guide for Toddlers

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I love toys for toddlers, the range of toys out there is amazing. So much so that it really can be difficult to choose what to buy. So here I have a bunch of toys and products that would all be great ideas for Christmas gifts for those under 3 years old. 

1. Jaques of London Fire Engine *Buy Me Here*

Jaques of London make the most gorgeous wooden toys for little ones. Their website is full of wonderful choices. But this year you may want to consider this beautiful fire engine. It is fully made from high-quality wood and is painted beautifully and in great detail. The fire engine comes with a roof with a ladder on and the ladder also moves up and down, there is also a roof to the driver's area which comes off, meaning you can put the 2 people inside the engine. The set features 2 firefighters, a male, and a female. The lovely thing about Jacques of London is that their toys arrive beautifully presented in a lovely gift box with a ribbon wrapped around, which looks beautiful under the Christmas tree. This fire engine is £24.99 and well worth the price for a toy that will last many years to come.

2. Dantoy Car Garage - *Buy Me Here*

This is a toy for the little car fanatics. This is the cutest toy garage ever and the great thing about it is that it is made from BIOplastic making it completely natural and great for the environment. The garage has 2 levels to it, the roof and the inside. There is a ramp for the cars to drive up and down and a little leaver to make cars stop. It also has pretend petrol pumps on the side. The cars all have cute faces on which makes them friendly for children to play with. It is super easy to play with as the cars move easily and the doors open easily too. This toy is perfect for children aged 2 years plus and will make a lovely little gift for Christmas. You can buy it for £30. 

3. Dantoy Hotdog Stand - *Buy Me Here*

If your child is more of a role play fan then this is for them. Just like the Dantoy Garage, this toy is also made from BIOplastic making it completely natural and also great for the planet.  The set comes with 9 items which include 3 sausages, 3 sausage buns, a hot dog stand, ketchup, and some tongs. This is a great toy to encourage creativity and imagination in a child and would make a lovely Christmas gift. It is aimed at children aged 2+ and is £20 to buy. 

4. Nuby Plush Learning - *Buy Me Here* 

These are great gifts for hands-on learning. The Jungle flashcards are all about learning the alphabet. They feature lowercase and uppercase letters, pictures and words, all displayed in vivid colours and bold patterns. Plus they are made from a plush soft material so then your little one can grab them, bend them, and even chew on them and they won't damage. They all come in a handy little storage case that your little one will love carrying around. These cost £15.99 to buy. Or you may want something a little more hands on for your toddler and so this is where the busy book comes in handy. Aimed at an older toddler it contains lots of activities inside that encourage the use of fine motor skills. Activities such as zips, shoelaces, buttons, fastenings, and velcro numbers. It also contains a zipped envelope to keep all the numbers safe inside. This is a gift that is sure to keep your little one busy and you can buy it for £12.99.

5. Toddler Bunny Towel - *Buy Me Here*

This luxury toddler towel from Lime Tree London makes a truly lovely gift. It comes in a large size so it is plenty big enough to wrap your little one inside, and has a cute hood which is a rabbit design with bunny ears and face. This towel is made from super soft cotton meaning it's super snuggly and will be lovely to dive into after having a bath. It is also machine washable and also goes into the dryer too. This pink bunny towel is just one of the designs that Lime Tree London has and is £19.50 to buy. You can also get it personalised at no extra cost and have it come gift-wrapped for £2.81. 

6. Blade and Rose Socks *Buy Me Here*

These socks make the cutest Christmas gift or even stocking filler for a toddler. Blade and Rose have lots of really cute designs of Christmas socks and here are 3 examples. You have Elf socks, which feature a cute elf with a fluffy feel and a forest green background. You have Peter Rabbit socks, which feature peter himself holding a present, and you have Polar bear organic socks, which are made from organic cotton and also help raise money for WWF Uk. Each pair starts at size age 0 and the elf ones go all the way to age 14. Meaning these could be bought for siblings in the family to match. The Elf and Peter rabbit socks are only £3.50 and the Polar bear socks are £4.50 to buy. 

7. Peg Stacker Dump Truck - *Buy Me Here*

This toy from Learning Resources is a brilliant toy that features all the things a child will love while helping them learn at the same time. Firstly they will love the design of it being a dump truck. The dump truck, named Tony, can be pushed along the floor, has bright colours, and a friendly face on the front. Children will love the aspect of getting to stack the barrels on top of Tony, sorting them into shapes, colours and numbers. The barrels fit into the back of tony via a slot they can be placed into, or the barrels can be stacked on top of each other. It is a great toy for developing fine motor skills or learning about shapes, colours and numbers. It is recommended for children aged 18 months + and is £17.00 to buy. 

8. Orchard Toys Dress Up Nelly *Buy Me Here*

Orchard Toys Games are great for introducing your toddler to playing games. This game Dress Up Nelly is all about matching colours by dressing up the elephants. Players take it in turns to collect a card and must try and match it up with other cards they have picked up, to make an elephant. It is a great way to encourage taking turns and getting children used to the idea of matching. It will also help with colour recognition. The game has 30 cards which are all chunky so perfect for little hands. The game is recommended for children aged 2 plus and the game can be played alone or with up to 4 players. It is £7.19 to buy and so a great price for gift. 

9. Happy Yak Books *Buy Me Here*

Happy Yak books are super playful books aimed with young kids in mind. Here are 4 titles from a massive collection of books from Happy Yak. Tales and Scales are both beautifully designed touch-and-feel books. These board books feature different areas of animals which you can feel different textures, such as soft or bumpy. They feature cute animals which are drawn with wonderful illustrations. If your child loves touch-and-feel books then they will love these. They can be bought at a price of £8.50 each. Or your child may prefer Feeding time, hungry farm, and hungry jungle where your little ones use a dangly food item that's attached to the book, to feed the animal along to the story. These colourful and fun board books encourage children to really get involved with the story. They can be bought at £7.59 each.

10. Kids Stuff Bath Foam and Bubble Bath *Buy Me Here*

These are perfect for stocking fillers or extra gifts for little ones. Kids love bathtime and so these products will make bathtime even more fun. The kids stuff range features lots of fun products. Such as Foaming Soap, which foams up to make a fab sensory experience in the bath. Kids love this stuff as it floats on the surface and can be picked up to be played with. Also fun bubble baths such as colour changing water and sparkle bubble bath which both add an extra something to the excitement of bath water. They also do frothy hair and body wash which is perfect to encourage the child who doesn't want to wash. It comes with a pump meaning it's easy to use and your little one may even be able to do it themself. These are all a brilliant price of from £2 each so are recommended as great gifts that won't break the bank. 

11. Stacking Stones *Buy Me Here*

I know lots of toddlers that love collecting, playing with, and building with stones. So these lightweight wooden stacking stones from Janod are the perfect gift for them. This set which can be bought from The Kids Collective store have 20 stones inside, all that come in different shapes and sizes meaning that they can be stacked in many different ways. They are also different colours which will make the built structure more interesting to look at. This toy really helps a child with their fine motor skills, balancing, cognitive thinking, and problem-solving. This toy is aimed at children aged 2+ and is £30 to buy. 

12. Melissa and Doug Cleaning up Set *Buy Me Here*

It is funny, but younger kids love cleaning up which is something not often carried on into older childhood. So this Dust, Sweep and Mop set from Melissa and Doug is a great gift for your little one to feel just like a grown-up to be getting to role-play cleaning up. This set comes with 6 pieces. A brush, mop, a smaller brush and shovel, a duster, and a stand for them all to sit on. The set is high quality with its lovely wooden handles and quality and colourful brush materials. It is the perfect set to help with imagination, creativity, and pretend play. Aimed at older toddlers and at £27.95 to buy, it's something that will definitely excite your little one on Christmas morning. 

13. Nuby Jungle Plush Cubes *Buy Me Here*

These clever cubes are aimed at younger toddlers and are all about getting them learning. This set has 4 plush cubes inside all with a theme of the jungle. Each side has something different on, from pictures of animals, mirrors, rattles, colours, and numbers and all feature different textures. Your toddler will love stacking these on top of each other and knocking them down and as they are soft, they are also great for throwing around. You can buy this set for £13.99. 

15. Magicube Blocks *Buy Me Here*

Magicubes by Geomag is a new and clever way to build. They are unlike any building bricks as they have magnetic power making them much easier to build with. The designs of construction are limitless as you can always stick them together to build in any direction you desire. This pack is the 16 pack which is a great amount to build with but you can also buy packs with fewer or more bricks inside. The colours of the bricks are your primary colours of red, blue, green and yellow, which is great for an introduction of colours. Plus they are made from recycled plastic which is great if you like supporting saving the planet. These sets are aimed for children aged 1 to 5 years old and so are the perfect starter brick for your little builder. A set of 16 is priced at £33. 

16. John Deere Hauling Farmer Set *Buy Me Here*

This John Deere hauling set from Tomy Toys is sure to make any little tractor fan happy. This set which includes a John Deere Style tractor will spark your little ones imagination as they become a farmer hauling their tractors to the farm. The hauler truck has a ramp that raises and lowers making it easy for the tractors to drive onto the truck. It also has sounds that make the truck even more realistic. Both the tractor and hauler have wheels and can be easily pushed along and the toys are nice and chunky but lightweight for smaller hands. As well as looking like a real tractor, these toys also feature faces on the front making them super child friendly. They are aimed at children aged 18 months + and can be bought at a price of £20.95

Which of these toys would you buy for your little one?