Saturday, 31 August 2019

Shimmer Stars Review

(Ad- Gifted)

I love it when I have new toy that I can't wait to tell you about and so I am super excited to tell you all about Shimmer stars.

If you have a little one who loves cute little animals but also loves getting all glammed up with sparkles and pretty things then this toy is perfect for them. 

Shimmers stars are you new pet that you can glam up at the same time as glamming yourself up by adding fabulous shimmers and accessories. 

We was sent one to review and Lily was so excited when she saw it. She loved that it was a super cute unicorn and she was excited to get it out the box. 

We was sent a Unicorn pet. The unicorn is pink, with darker pink tail and mane, purple eyes and a golden horn and feet. She comes wearing a little purple tutu, purple bow in her hair and pretty necklace around her neck. She really is super cute and super soft, and the colours are very pretty. 

The set also comes with a pink brush to brush her hair and a headband.

The cute thing about the accessories is that as well as your unicorn being able to wear them, your child can too meaning that your child can dress up looking just like their pet. 

If that isn't cute enough that you have a matching pet, it also comes with a special shaped wand that you can attach sequins with to make your pet shimmer, then your child can attach them to their own hair so then again, they match. 

The way the sequins attach is really magical for kids plus it is really easy for them to do! I was really impressed with how easy they went on and its a really fun way for kids to be able to do it. 

Its all done with your special magic wand. The wand opens up by twisting it. I found this hard at the start and couldn't twist it, but then realised there is a very thin layer of tape holding it together. After the tape is removed it twists and opens very easily. The handle of the wand then comes apart, you then get a sequin and lay it on top of the part of the star that has a hole in it. You push the wand handle onto the sequin and it attaches to your handle. The handle has a button on it and you simply press the button as you press it onto the pet. This easy attaches it.

The toy comes with full instructions on how to do this in picture form which makes it a lot easier to understand than reading about it. 

Lily really loved playing with this toy, she sat for ages placing lots of sequins onto her pet, and then she let me put some on her and then of corse, she wanted to put some on me.

But what about when your child has filled the unicorn full of sequins, well, no problem there, as the brush simply brushes them back out and you can start all over again. 

I think this toy is really something different to others out on the market and if you child loves soft toys then this would be a way to buy them one but with a difference.

You can pick up your very own shimmer star from Smyths Toy Store. They are priced at £19.99 and there is also choice of cat, pup or panda if you didn't want a unicorn.

What would your child like about Shimmer Stars? 

Wednesday, 28 August 2019

Don't Forget!! Your Last Minute Guide to Going Back to School!

(Part Ad - Gifted)

If I am right, School goes back next week, or maybe for first timers like Lily it will be the week after. 

So your going to need to see if you have those items you may have forgot to buy. Your so busy buying the essentials that who knows, there may be something you have forgot. 

So here are a few ideas of things you may still need to buy!

1. Drinks Bottle 

One thing you may need to send your child with is a drinks bottle. You may be looking at all types but one to look at will be getting your child an Aluminium bottle, these keep your child's drink colder for much longer meaning their drink stays fresh. These bottles come with a easy lifting spout to drink from plus can be carried with the handle on the lid. Different kids designs coming to the Website GB Posters Soon - RRP £9.99 

2. Stationary 

Wether it is to take into school or for homework use at home, all kids are going to need stationary. Stabilo have a huge range of things you child will need and also love. They have pencils, pens and fantastic highlighters. One great thing about the Stabilo range is that they have stationary special designed for children with their Easy Start range. they are all designed with your children in mind making them easy to grip and giving them an easy flow when they write. These are perfect for children who are learning to write. These pens, pencils and highlighters are also made to last meaning you won't be replacing them a week later. You can find them on the Stabilo website for a range of prices. 

3. Stain Cleaning Products

Uniforms are one thing that as you already know, is super expencive to buy. So the last thing you want to be doing is throwing away uniform because you can't get that nasty grass stain out of it. So why not stock up on stain removing cleaning products? ACE is a leading stain removal brand and they have lots of products perfect for keeping your child's uniform looking brand spanking new!
They have products for whites, colours, and sprays that can be used on clothing before a wash to help remove the stain. Plus the bottles are nice and big meaning you are going to be able to use them for plenty of washes. You can head to the ACE website to check out all their products.  

4. Early Reading Books 

One thing your child will be doing when they start school is learn how to read and there is nothing wrong with giving them that helping hand at home by getting them some books to read at home. These Early Reader books from Maverick Books are perfect for that with 5 books from 3 reading levels, telling 5 great stories that your children will love to read. 

5. PE Kit Bag

Nothing could be nicer than your child having their very own personalised PE Kit bag. Lily has this super cute bag with pull string tie at the top to keep her PE kit in. Sewn onto the front is her name. It is the perfect size and lovely material for her to carry herself. It is made by Isabel Peters who makes fabulous fabrics. 

Which of the above will you be needing for School? 

Thursday, 22 August 2019

Learning Resource Coding Critters Review

(ad gifted)
You may have seen my recent Learning Resource review about Botley, the coding robot. Following how great this item is for STEM, Learning Resources have just launched a coding toy that is perfect for slightly younger kids at pre school age. These are called Coding Critters and are to become your child's first coding friend. 

We had a choice of the 3 wonderful pets that you could choose from, Dog, Dinosaur or Cat. Lily chose the dog, which always seems to be her go to choice of toy pet. 

She was so excited when it arrived and wanted to get it out to play. Which I let her get it out straight away. Before I could even show her how to use it she was already doing role play with the dogs, and this was great to see. Perfect to know that as well as learning STEM that this toy also provides a great opportunity for the imagination to grow. This also meant that she could play while I set up all the other pieces. 

So what does the set come with? 

The set comes with - 

1 coding pet, (dog called Ranger)
1 Puppy Friend (called Zip)
Full Colour Story Book
10 coding Paw Prints
3 Cardboard Play Set decorations
Plastic Playset - Ball, Seesaw, house and slide

Quick start guide. 

Putting the cardboard playset together was very easy. There are plastic holders that you push the cardboard pictures into making them stand up. The see saw and house are also both very easy to put toggether and just clip. I did find the slide easy to do, but then found it didn't stay together very easily and I had to keep re building it. 

You then also need batteries for Ranger and he takes 3 AAA batteries (which are not included)

When it was all set up It was time to show Lily how to use it. 

First I showed her the simple way you make Ranger move. On the top of him he has 4 direction buttons and then a button in the middle of them. Its really simple to code. You simply push the directions you want him to go and then press that middle button and Ranger does exactly what you want him to do.
You can do a sequence of up to 30 steps which does take your dog quite far around the room.

To make coding Ranger more fun, you can use the story book to help think of fun ideas. Inside it shows you what to press and so you child can copy it. You can then make Ranger do all sorts like play hide and seek or play with the ball. Lily mostly likes playing with Ranger and Zip at the same time. You can make it so then Ranger pushes Zip down the slide or catches him at the bottom. If you make Ranger and Zips noses touch then magnets help them attach and ranger can pull zip around. 

You could also use the 10 coding paw prints to plan a route for Ranger to take, this really helped Lily be able to understand which buttons to press to make Ranger move the ways she wanted too.

The fun with Ranger doesn't stop there. He also has a interactive pet mode which means you can play and take care of him. Keep hold of his nose for around 3 seconds and he will switch over to interactive mode. You will know he has when a light on his back lights up. You can then press the direction buttons on him to make him do different things. Forward button is feeding him and he will say yum yum, left is making him sleep, back is playful mode where he barks, and right is to make him dance to music. Lily loved the dance move and thought it was hilarious watching him move around the floor. 

Ranger is very easy to switch on and off and has a button on his belly. 

Overall I think that the coding critter is brilliant, and a fantastic way to help children learn about coding and also directions. I love that they have come as a animal and that is also has an interactive mode so then children can have more fun with there new pet. I think the quality of Ranger is great, the buttons are very easy to press and so it isn't something you would need to help your child with.

My only thing I would say is that the plastics of the playset could be a little stronger and arn't up to the usual Learning resource plastic quality. 

But as that isn't the main part of the toy I would totally recommend this for your child as a fun way to learn.

You can buy your child's first ever Coding Critter from the Learning Resource website and it is RRP £40 recommended for ages 4-10. 

What would your child think to Coding Critters?
Would they choose Dog, Cat or Dino? 

Friday, 16 August 2019

Win a EasiYo Yogurt Maker and Yogurt

(Ad- Gifted)

Who has heard of EasiYo? I have one at home and I love it! It makes really yummy yogurt and makes it in no time at all with little effort!

You can read my review all about it here

EasiYo are giving you the chance to win an EasiYo starter pack and a selection of Greek style yogurts! The make-at-home yogurt brand has added six gorgeous new flavours to the range – all delectably Greek style.

Choose from Black Cherry, Blueberry, Apricot, Strawberry, Lemon, and Strawberry & Banana.

So simple to make, you just mix the sachet with water and place in the EasiYo yogurt maker. Eight hours later there’s 1kg of delicious yogurt to enjoy. 

To buy online and to see the full list of stockists, information and recipe ideas, please visit:

If you would like the chance to win this amazing Yogurt maker plus yogurt mixtures then enter on the Gleam app below. 

Win a EasiYo Yogurt Maker and Yogurt

Wednesday, 14 August 2019

Monthly Book Roundup - What we have been reading in July.

(Post contains Ad's - Gifted)

I read to Lily each night with out fail. Story time is so important for settling a child for bed, giving them that extra one on one time plus it will help them with learning to read in the future. 

Lily is a lot fussier with the stories I read her now, and she does go back to her old favourites a lot of the time and as she is at an age where she can start to remember stories, she asks for specific ones. But I do get chance to introduce a few new new books each month, usually around 2 or 3.

You can read all my other book reviews from the last few years Here

This month she chose a book from her collection plus I was sent 2 books from Walker Picture books to read.

Here is what we read.

1. Little Miss Giggle and the New Job - by Roger Hargreaves 
We just love Mr Men and Little Miss books. So we bought a selection of them from Poundland. This one is all about Little Miss Giggles which seems appropriate for Lily who like most children, is always giggling. The story is about Little Miss Giggles getting a new job in a restaurant. But as the story pans out she doesn't do too well in this job because she keeps offending people by giggling at the wrong times. In the end she finds the perfect job where giggling is very much aloud. I thought the storyline for it was great and Lily really enjoyed it. It is definitely a hot for £1 in poundland.

2. The Pigeon HAS to go to school -  by Mo Willems 
I did find the storyline to this very strange, but Lily seemed to enjoy it. It is a new story that has just come out and is all about a pigeon that is a little unsure about going to school. The pigeon is talking about all his worries and why he is scared to go to school, but then somehow ends up convincing himself that actually school is exciting and he just has to go! I think on some levels it will be a good book for children who are excited about going to school (like Lily is) as she loved hearing all about school. But in my personal opinion i'm a little unsure about those that are scared. I feel it focuses way to much on things children may be afraid of without enough of what is great about school at the end. But for other children who are already at school, I think they would love the cute little cartoon feel to the book and the comedy of the little scardy cat pigeon. This book can be bought on Amazon

3. Red Red Red - by Polly Dunbar
This has to be the best new book I have read to Lily for a while. It is called Red Red Red and is all about a little toddler that gets angry. It is very easily relatable to children who are toddlers or even Lily's age and get angry easily when they don't get their own way. 
The toddler in the story wants a biscuit and can't reach and falls when he tries to get one. It is all about him getting frustrated to not being able to get one. So he gets angry and see's red! His mum comforts him, and teaches him to count to 10 which helps him feel better. 
The book from start to finish is brilliant with the rhyming and Lily actually started to remember some of the words of the story and read them along with me. She very much enjoyed the part where she could join in and count to 10. There is also a part of the book where it says and breathe and they take a deep breathe, which I think is a lovely thing to do before bed to help relax you.
Overall the book was brilliantly written from start to finish and I would highly recommend it. Lily really enjoyed it. 
You can buy this book from Amazon.

Which of the above books would your child enjoy? 

Wednesday, 7 August 2019

Win a Baby Born Surprise Bundle

(AD, Gifted)

Unwrap Baby Born Surprise! These are cute little bundles of joy that come with 10 surprises! Each package is adorably packaged in a real fabric blanket. when unwrapped it reveals your baby which is bundled up in a very cute snuggly swaddle which is themed. It could be all wrapped up like a flower or maybe like a adorable unicorn! The surprise is real! 

Then use water to reveal your babies eye colour and wake her up from her sleep. Fully unwrap the swaddle and uncover the babies unique hairstyle. The babies bottle tells you if you have a girl or a boy. Feed the baby the water and she will pee in her diaper revealing a fun pattern. The cute little babies arms move and legs so she can sit up or lay down. 

There are so many to collect and each baby comes with a collector's guide which has surprise games to help find baby's name, birthday, and favourite food. It also includes a birth certificate to fill out. 

Baby Born Surprise are £11.99 each and can be bought from places such as Smyths Toy Store. Head to the Baby Born website to see more. 

I have a special bundle of 3 dolls to giveaway! 

Enter below on the gleam app for your chance to win! 

Win a Baby Surprise Bundle

Friday, 2 August 2019

Sylvanian Families Grocery Market Review

(Ad - Gifted) 
This Sylvanian Family set I am about to tell you about to tell you about I can see becoming one of Lily's favourite sets. 

We were sent the Sylvanian Families Grocery Market for Lily to test out and Lily is currently a huge fan of playing shopping so it is perfect for her. 

Lily was so excited when she saw that what it was on the front of the box, and shouted out "shopping". She also is a huge Sylvanian fan so was pleased to have a new set to add to her collection. 

The set comes unassembled in the box but doesn't take long to put together and you simply push the pieces together to make them fit. The longest part to setting up the set is putting on the stickers. The stickers really do add a nice element to it, but are very fiddly to do. I will admit, I hate putting stickers on as I can never manage to get them on perfect and unfortunetly when they are stuck down, they are very hard to take back off to re align and so you are stuck with it a little wonky. Luckily our kids don't seem to notice or even care about wonky stickers and so it isn't much of a problem. 

The set comes with a main house, which has opening doors. A check out till with working conveyor belt and some shelfs to place all the food on. It then comes with a really cute collection of food, fruits, and drinks. Even the little tins of sweetcorn have stickers so then you can tell exactly what they are.

It also comes with a tiny credit card and a shopping basket and bag. There are over 30 pieces in total so plenty of accessories to get creative with.

It probably took me about 30 mins total to set it all up. While I was setting up Lily enjoyed helping by placing all the food onto the shelves. When it is all set up it looks brilliant. Attention to detail is always great with Sylvanian sets. 

The set doesn't come with any Sylvanian Families, so Lily ran to go and get some of hers to play with. She chose one to be the shop keeper and then chose some more to be customers. 

She spent ages playing shopping with her new set. She would make one of the customers carry the shopping trolley and loved picking things from the shelf to make them buy. 

The thing I love the most about Sylvanian families is that it is brilliant for childrens imagination. I just love watching and listening to Lily act out what the Sylvanians are doing. 

This set works lovely with the rest of the sets we have, and all work together to make a lovely Sylvanian town. 

The sets are aimed at children over 3 years old due to there being a lot of small parts which cause a choking hazard. 

The set is £29.99 to buy and can be bought from Smyths Toy Store

Would your child enjoy this set?