Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Bass Buds Mini Game & Competition

Need to fill a couple of minutes? Try playing this cool and VERY addictive mini game from Bass Buds. Dodge the 'dodgy' earphones, avoid 'Bitter Bill' and collect the crystals!

Sounds simple? I can guarantee that you'll not want to admit defeat! My current high score stands at 40 something seconds of survival... see if you can beat me!

The player who stays alive the longest from all of the players will receive a pair of classic Bass Buds as well as a BassBoomz, courtesey of Bass Buds.

Good luck... I can see lots of lunch breaks being snatched away by this game!

Wednesday Words: Hugs, Virginia Satir

"We need 4 hugs a day for survival.
We need 8 hugs a day for maintenance.
We need 12 hugs a day for growth."
Virginia Satir
Crazy With Twins

Monday, 24 February 2014

Win a 7 night stay at Retallack Resort & Spa!

Retallack Resort and Spa are offering you the chance to win a Staycation of your own, be it to relive your childhood holidays, spend some quality time with family and friends or treat you and your loved ones. By simply liking, following or tweeting about Retallack Resort & Spa in the widget below you could win a 7 night stay in one of their 2 bed, baby friendly holiday lodges.

Good luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, 23 February 2014

The Journey to Bristol.... #photoanhour

First day of our trip to Bristol, visiting my sister for the start of half term! The story of our day in photographs.... enjoy!

#photoanhour 8am  - the view from my front door

#photoanhour 9am - leaving my town via the harbour

#photoanhour 10am - in the car!

#photoanhour 11am - still in the car!

#photoanhour 12 noon - STILL in the car!

#photoanhour 1pm - we've arrived! Hello Merry!

#photoanhour 2pm - little sister trying her hand at interior styling!
#photoanhour 3pm - home from home!
#photoanhour 4pm - knew we should have worn our wellies!
#photoanhour 5pm - first ice cream of the year from a 'real' ice cream van!

#photoanhour 6pm - exhausted Lucy!

#photoanhour 7pm - that's my Saturday nights sorted for the forseeable future!

#photoanhour 8pm - nearly ready for bed!
#photoanhour 9pm - peace and quiet time for me!

Thursday, 20 February 2014

Twinkl Education Resources Review - Filling a half term with fun!

For many of you, you have had your half term, but ours is still to come! My children finish school tomorrow for our week of recuperation after a hectic start to 2014. After a long school term, it's nice to take time out and have some fun... but how to keep the brain cells working?
We're spending the weekend visiting family, then back home for the remainder of the week, hopefully with some sunshine to boot!

Just in time for wet weather planning and indoor time, I was introduced to the website Twinkl. Twinkl is a comprehensive website with a wealth of information for anyone involved in primary education, worldwide! As you may (or may not!) know, my children are educated bi-lingually as we live in Wales, with the emphasis at school on the Welsh language. Supplementing their education at home is therefore important to us as a family, as well as having fun at the same time of course!
There are lots of free resources available but to get the full experience, it's easy to subscribe on either an individual basis or as a school.

Navigating the website is simple - resources are categorised by educational level and subject area, so you can either browse by age or subject.

I especially love the Resource Calendar; this is a really helpful tool in planning anything from full days, to shorter activities as time-fillers.

I've chosen some activities to try over the half term holiday and will update you as the week goes by. Here's what we have chosen to do!

Decision Maker Mat - where to go today?

Exploring our own home - what CAN you see?

Send ourselves to space! Making an astronaut friend.

Get science-y with some home experiments!

These are just a small selection of the resources available; have a browse yourself and take your pick!

You can stay in touch with the lovely people over at Twinkl via their social media channels; Facebook, Twitter and YouTube to name just three! With individual subscriptions started at just £24.95, it's a great way to boost your child's education by having thousands of resources literally at your fingertips! Not to mention progress and rewards charts, craft templates and display ideas and backgrounds. Enjoy exploring!

I have received a Platinum subscription to Twinkl for the purpose of review. Views my own.

Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Wednesday Words: Spread Love, Mother Teresa

"Spread love everywhere you go: first of all in your own house. Give love to your children, to your wife or husband, to a next door neighbour. Let no one ever come to you without leaving better and happier. Be the living expression of God's kindness; kindness in your face, kindness in your eyes, kindness in your smile, kindness in your warm greeting."

Mother Teresa
Crazy With Twins

Sunday, 16 February 2014

The Ultimate Cheat Sheet for Packed Lunches!

School dinners or packed lunch? The million dollar question that is spoken in every household with school-age children! I'm not going to influence your decision as all local authorities have different policies and menus in operation, but here are some great ideas to point you in the right direction of a healthy packed lunch!
  1. Lean meat, chicken, tuna, eggs, low-fat cheese or houmous are all great tasting healthy choices. Try to avoid ham, salami and bacon which are high in salt and saturated fat.
  2. Always add salads and vegetables like tomatoes, cucumber, carrot sticks, sliced peppers and sweetcorn.
  3. For a change to 'normal' bread sandwiches, try pitta bread or wraps to make tasty sandwich parcels.
  4. Spreads like butter, margarine and mayonnaise can be used but only in small amounts. They add flavour but can add fat and calories to the meal.
  5. Try using wholemeal bread as it's higher in fibre and will bring other benefits to your child's lunch.
For the record, I'm not biased either towards or against school dinners; my son has lunch provided by the school but my daughter prefers to take a packed lunch! We're lucky that we have an overall great school lunch menu in our county with a great team who provide it!

Why not try some of these tasty sandwich filling ideas out on your family? They're great for days out too - when we get the sunshine back!
  • Boiled egg and watercress
  • Tinned tuna and sweetcorn
  • Cold chicken, lettuce and low-fat cheese spread
  • Boiled egg, tomatoes and soft cheese
  • Houmous, grated carrot and lettuce
  • Low-fat cheese spread and grated carrot
  • Sliced cheese and tomato
Check out the Great Grub Club website here for more nutritious sandwich ideas! Enjoy!

Saturday, 15 February 2014

'Mum's Barley Broth' The Co-operative Electrical Winter Warmer Challenge!

When I was growing up, I don't remember much about what we ate - I probably wasn't interested so long as I got fed (which I must add, I did get fed!). But one meal I do remember was my mum's 'barley broth'. I distinctly remember picking the carrots out of it - I loved the lamb and barley part, just detested the carrots!

But... I'm pleased to say that I now like carrots and so do my children, so this is my entry into the competition. When I was challenged by The Co-operative to write about my favourite winter dish, mum's barley broth immediately came to mind!

Now that winter is upon us, there is one thing in particular that comforts us, year upon year, warming our hearts and making us feel human again: food. Nothing quite compares to a chunky beef stew or a hearty, peppery broth to help you thaw out on a cold winter’s night. Piping hot, substantial and incredibly tasty, winter comfort food provides something of an antidote from the arctic British weather conditions that chill us to the bone.

This recipe is tweaked slightly from how I remember my mum making it - why not try it yourself and let me know what you think? Enjoy!

Mum's Barley Broth - serves 4
400g lamb, diced
200g Barley/lentils/dried soup mix
4 carrots, peeled and sliced
1 onion, finely diced
1.5 - 2 pints lamb stock
Freshly ground salt and black pepper to season


  1. Season the lamb and fry in a large saucepan in a little oil for 2-3 mins to seal the flavour in.
  2. Add the onion and fry for a further 2 mins.
  3. Add the stock, carrots and barley/lentils/soup mix and bring to the boil. Simmer on a high heat for 20 mins with the lid on and then turn down the heat and simmer over a low heat (lid on) for at least 1 hour. Or you can transfer to a slow cooker and cook gently for 3-4 hours.
  4. Serve with crusty bread* (homemade and warm if possible!)
*We always had this soup with homemade chips, I'm not sure why as it's a slightly strange combination but we enjoy it now with crusty bread!

You adjust the amount of stock to your liking - the amount I use produces a pretty thick soup, so you can thin it out if you wish!

This soup is great for the winter and is low in fat, high in fibre and has slow-release carbohydrates to keep your energy levels up. It can also be frozen so why not double the amounts and freeze half for a quick and easy tea the following week?

You can join in with this competition too - full details here. Good luck!


Wednesday, 12 February 2014

Wednesday Words: Growing by Tony Mitton

Growing by Tony Mitton

Today I may be small.
But one day you'll be tall,
like me, maybe taller.
You won't fit into your bed.
Your hat won't fit on your head.
Your feet will fill up the floor.
You'll have to bend down to come through the door.
You'll be able to reach to the highest shelf,
(and I can't do that now, myself).
Out in the country the tallest trees
will scratch your ankles and tickle your knees.
Up in the clouds, yes, way up there,
the eagles will nest in your craggy hair.
But they'd better soon find a safer place
because soon you head will be up in space.

So I hope you won't be too proud to bend down
and say hello to your old home-town.
And I hope it won't drive you utterly mad
to visit your tiny Mum and Dad.

Crazy With Twins

Tuesday, 11 February 2014

Reasons to Believe - SMILE!

Choose a photo that gives you a reason to believe? I have hundreds of photos and a fair few that give me a reason to believe, but this one also makes me smile!

This is a photo that I've published before and it will probably crop up again! Lucy is a smiley dog who loves the beach, but she can be a bit lazy! But I love her!

This is my #ReasonsToBelieve photo as part of Linky. Why not add yours?

Sunday, 9 February 2014

Follow me on Bloglovin'!


'Love From Lalaloopsy' Children's Magazine Review

We had a special delivery this week - the 'Love From Lalaloopsy' edition of the new magazine series 'Love From...'.

Each month features a different character with this month being the lovely Lalaloopsy! Within this pack, we received the standard magazine, an extra craft magazine, stickers, a door hanger craft set and a free gift of a cute little bag, pencil & jewellery set.

There are plenty of activities to complete with your child within the magazine; my daughter especially liked the 'Cookie Mix' gift idea, the 'Letter Game' and the 'Spots and Stripes' activity page.

This is definitely a magazine worth buying; with the dismal weather we are having at the moment, this is great as there are lots of indoor things to do and ideas for things to make. And to make sure there's a bit of educational material in there(!), there's little quotes within the magazine with facts to help your child to learn along with puzzles, quizzes and stories.
There's often been the time when I've let my children choose a magazine after a shopping trip, only for it to be brought home, flicked through and then found lurking in the toy box or under the bed weeks later! But this one has been read and loved over the weekend, with still plenty to do from it over the next couple of weeks.
The next month's edition will be on sale on 5th March and will feature the fairies from 'Rainbow Magic'. Look out for it in major retailers including Co-Op, Asda and Sainsbury.
The 'Love From...' series will also build great communication with parents by using the three main social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest) to enable parents to share in their child's experience and find inspiration for further creative and educational projects to complete together. Keep an eye on their social media channels for lots of great ideas!
Overall, this looks to be a great series of magazines with plenty to keep your children busy!
Disclaimer: We were sent one copy of the 'Love From Lalaloopsy' magazine to review. All views and opinions my own (and my daughter's!).

Saturday, 8 February 2014

Hotel Chocolat Valentine's Chocolate Review

This week were sent a special treat to review from the lovely people at Hotel Chocolat. Now, everyone loves getting parcels through the post, but when this parcel arrived, it was clear that it was something special! No boring brown cardboard boxes here....!

I'll keep you hanging on for just a couple more seconds...

Here we have the exquisite Valentine's Goody Bag! A beautifully presented gift bag full of luxury chocolates - what more could a girl ask for on Valentine's Day?

This gift contains a luscious selection of charming chocolates to treat someone special this Valentine's Day. With Lovely Hearts Milk Chocolates, Raspberry Fusion Slab, Strawberry Heart Lick and Passion Fruit Truffles there's enough choice to share, if you really want to! (I'm sure the 'broken heart' was the doing of the postman, not Hotel Chocolat... or my loved one!)

These chocolates are definitely something to savour and enjoy - deliciously rich but not overly sweet, and an extra bonus point, they are suitable for vegetarians! This Valentine's Goody Bag costs £19, so a really reasonable price for the quality of chocolates that you receive.
Perfect for a treat for a relaxing Valentine's stress-free weekend and did I mention that chocolate can reduce stress and anxiety? So, a little indulgence is good for you!
You can buy this gift and the other chocolates within the range here. With prices from just £2.50, there's definitely something for all budgets. And don't forget, Valentine's Day is closely followed by Mother's Day and Easter... I'm off to make my 'wish list'!
Disclaimer: We were sent the Valentine's Goody Bag free of charge from Hotel Chocolat to review. All views and opinions my own.