Thursday, 31 May 2012

What's Up With Jody Barton ? Book Review

"I'm about to let you into a huge secret, one that even my twin sister doesn't know about.
Its epically messing with my brain."

WHAT'S UP WITH JODY BARTON? is a book to be talked about, but also NOT to be talked about, it really is a tricky one. You see, once you've read it, you'll be DYING to talk to someone about it, but you also won't want to ruin it for anyone who hasn't read it yet. I guarantee that you will love  happening upon the twist in Jody's tale so much, that you would never want to spoil it for anyone else, unless you really hated them.

Xene read the book from start to finish yesterday, she couldn't put it down, and it certainly did not disappoint her, she said that it was very funny, made her laugh out loud and it has a great surprise waiting, she enjoyed it so much, she refused to tell me the huge secret and has insisted that I read it for myself.

She recommends it to any teenage girl, especially if they are fans of the Lottie Biggs books, also written by Hayley Long.
It is published in paperback on 31st may 2012, and can be found here.

If your teenager loves books then get them to head over to Queen of Teen 2012 and vote for their favourite teen author, Hayley has been shortlisted, along with some other fabulous authors.

Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Chicken Pox !

Last week I was sitting in a Preschool Committee meeting and Eowyn was being extremely grumpy and sad.
Halfway through the meeting she needed the toilet, whilst helping her to adjust her skirt I noticed a rather angry looking spot....
There was a big sign up saying a case of Chicken pox had been reported, so off home we went and waited...

By the afternoon Eowyn had 45 spots, I jokingly said you could join your dots, minutes later Eowyn returned with a big black pen, she had indeed tried to join the dots, she had also added a fair few more herself!!

By Friday morning Eowyn had over 250 spots, I didn't know so may spots could fit on a little girl, even on her tongue!
The very hot weekend did nothing for her desire to scratch, however the frequent dips in the paddling pool, did appear to help her.

Today is Wednesday and they are starting to disappear, which is great, however Tyrus and Kaide have yet to catch chicken pox, so we shall just wait and see.

Tyrus is extremely miserable today and I did notice a few spots last night, so will be keeping a close eye on him today, and kaide will robably come down with it for half term!!
Oh the joys of childhood illnesses....

Keep Britain Breastfeeding Scavenger Hunt 2012

You may have noticed many websites and blogs talking about Keep Britain Breastfeeding Scavenger Hunt 2012 recently. If you haven’t already looked at the website yourself to find out more about it, I’d like to share in this short post what it’s about and why I’m taking part.
The idea behind the hunt is to coincide with the British National Breastfeeding week from 24th – 30th June 2012,  to raise awareness of breastfeeding, to add some fun and possibly win some fab prizes.. Various bloggers, who would like to share their breastfeeding stories and experiences, will write a post a week for the four weeks of June, focusing on a different theme each week. As well as the opportunity to find out information about the highs and lows of breastfeeding through reading these blog posts, there will be competitions to win various goodies related to breastfeeding, such as nursing tops bras, baby slings etc. You can read all about this on the central hunt website.
The overall goal of the hunt is for mums to share their views, experiences and knowledge of breastfeeding, so that other mums can make an informed choice about their own breastfeeding journey, and perhaps give them the confidence and information they need to achieve their personal breastfeeding goals, which many mums don’t achieve because they do not receive the right information, support and advice.
I agree wholeheartedly with this goal. I have been very fortunate that I have been able to successfully breastfeed all six of my children, with very few problems, although I know for many women this is not the case.
As you will already know if you follow my breastfeeding blog Breast 4 Babies, I am not a shove it down your throat type of girl and I understand that there are many women that would like to breastfeed, but for one reason or another are unable to. However, in some situations I do truly believe that it is a lack of support and information that has lead that woman to feel that she is unable to breastfeed. There is not enough information available before birth and limited resources mean that many areas do not have enough staff to support new mums, who are trying to get to grips with this wonderful experience.
The four topics shall be, including the title of my post in brackets
  • Friday 1st June: The Benefits of Breastfeeding (according to Mandi)
  • Friday 8th June: Mum to Mum sharing about Breastfeeding (Ten things your midwife or health visitor never told you about BF)
  • Friday 15th June: Where to Get Support (Peer Supporters rock!)
  • Friday 22nd June: Breastfeeding Beyond the First Month (There are three in the bed)
If you like the sound of my posts, please stop by Breast 4 Babies and read my posts, also there are some other fab bloggers taking part, and you may even win yourself some great prizes.

Thursday, 17 May 2012


Nick Jr., the award-winning pre-school channel from the Nickelodeon network, today announces the 2012 launch Help Dora Help, the campaign that brings exploration to life in nurseries and pre-schools across the UK.

The campaign, supported by The Prince’s Foundation for Children & the Arts consists of a free activity pack, giving nurseries and pre-schools educational activity resources. Nurseries will also have the opportunity to apply for an award of £20,000. The pack follows the Early Years Foundation Stage development goals and contains six activity session plans that provide stimulating learning opportunities with the theme of Dora the Explorer’s adventures. The themes for this year’s pack are: Cooking, Sports Day, Fairy Tales, Animals, Seaside and Music.

Registration is now open at for nurseries to apply for a pack. They have until 22nd July to work through the activities with their pre-schoolers and put together their application for the £20,000 award.

Once this year’s applications have been submitted, an expert panel led by Nick Jr.’s Wake Up World Helena Dowling, alongside Nick Jr. representatives and partners including The Prince’s Foundation, Dora Magazine and Chad Valley will choose five finalists. The public will then be able to vote for their favourite application and decide who is awarded the £20,000.

Each of the five finalists will be awarded discovery and learning equipment from Chad as well as a classroom visit from Dora the Explorer and all five finalists’ award bids will be filmed and aired on Nick. Jr.

In 2011, Hope Nursery School in Belfast was selected. With the award the Nursery selected to build a play area featuring numerous play structures, a puppet theatre, garden, sand and water area.

Tina McCann, MD Nickelodeon UK, said: “The quality of applications in 2011’s Help Dora Help campaign were incredible. We’re delighted with the way the award has been used at Hope Nursery and equally excited to engage with pre-schoolers and practitioners across the country once more throughout 2012.”

Nurseries and pre-schools can apply for the free Help Dora Help Activity Pack and Award Fund at

Friday, 11 May 2012

Redakai Truly Awesome

The boys have been pestering me for a while about the new craze Redakai, so you can imagine their entusiasm when I was given the opportunity to review them, in partnership with Blog Match and Spinmaster.

What is Redakai?
Redakai is a revolutionary new trading card game that’s fast and fun to play.

  • Redakai comes to life with amazing Blast3D™ Technology!
  • Redakai has innovative “Stack to Battle” gameplay. Stack attacks to damage your opponent, and stack monsters to power up your own defenses.
  • Redakai is highly visual and intuitive, easy for kids (and parents) to learn, but a lifetime to master.
  • There are two versions – Basic and Advanced game play. The Starter Set enables you to play the basic gameplay.
  • For Boys 6-12 yrs old
Spinmaster say "Start your training to become a Kairu warrior with the Redakai Starter Pack! Face off against any opponent with your arsenal of animated attacks. Use the X-Reader to store your X-Drives, and then transform it into your battlefield for a one-on-one Kairu showdown! Master the power of Kairu with the Redakai Starter Pack! Comes with 16 X-Drives plus 7 bonus X-Drives! And a two in one battlefield/ storage case."

Lochlan our eldest boy had received a card with one of his magazines and they both watch it on TV, so they were already quite positive about Redakai.

They began the game by playing Rock Paper Scissors to decide who would start!

They loved the game, in fact I have never heard the two boys so quiet whilst playing a game! It starts off as an easy game that they both got the idea of quite easily, meaning they didn't get bored whilst they tried to work out how to play, they went straight into it.

Because it is a card game, they were quite evenly matched meaning that both of them won and lost, which is quite a big deal for a six year old..

The biggest asset to this game is that all of the cards can stack inside the battle zone, meaning none get lost and we are not constantly slipping over on shiny cards!!

They loved the way the health depleted by laying another card on top.
The entire family have tried the Redakai and it has been a resounding success, even with the girls, who usually do not have an interest in the boys card games.

The cards themselves are just amazing and look so cool, this would be a perfect gift for any little boy, and the bonus is it doesn't take up too much room!

Friday, 4 May 2012

May The Fourth Be With You !

It's that time again. Time to head to a galaxy far far away! LEGO® Shop is proud to announce that they will be running a set of great LEGO Star Wars offers for the unofficial nerd holiday of May the 4th.

4 & 5 May Only! FREE Exclusive TC-14 Minifigure, Free Delivery, and R2-D2 Poster with any LEGO Star Wars order of £50 or more!

FREE Exclusive Minifigure, Free Delivery, and Poster with any LEGO Star Wars order of £50 or more! Valid 4.5.12 - 5.5.12

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

I am a failure!!

You may remember that I started on the fabulous Mutu System to get rid of my weight and be looking fab for my sister's blessing taking place on 12th May.

Well it started great, the first two weeks I ate sensibly, cut out the fizzy drinks and was starting to feel that actually I would be back into my clothes by then....

However, I have had to admit failure, the dress that I had for the blessing has been sent back and a larger size ordered, I am not happy with the way that I look and I take my hat off to all those ladies out there who have such amazing willpower and stick to their regimes.

As I have never had to worry about my weight very much before I have found this very challenging and difficult, it has done nothing for my self esteem and has resulted in a few emotional outbursts at both my husband and sister, which I am not very proud of, but I am finding it very hard to handle.

The reasons that I have been unable to stick to the Mutu, are hard to pinpoint, we have had five of the family birthdays in the last five weeks, resulting in lots of cake and birthday type dinners, Easter was a mass of chocolate and I have had so much going on in the family that I have found myself eating junk food or late at night once the children have gone to bed.

Reading this, they seem pretty lame excuses but I am determined that this will change, I am not happy with the way I look, therefore I need to do something about it, I am obviously not going to be thin for my sister's blessing but I have another goal, my son will turn one on 10th June and we have my husbands Rugby Summer Ball on 9th June, so I would at least like to feel good and half decent by then.

So, I shall throw out the junk food and plan healthy meals starting on Monday, any tips or words that will help, would be gratefully received xxx

Chicks update..batch two due11th April

After our fairly successful first hatch, the children waited eagerly for the second lot to arrive, this time we had eight eggs that looked pretty good.
Unlike the first hatch, I was a little more relaxed with these...

I was very surprised to find on 11th April that one of the eggs was already making good progress, at 10am Luna was fully out of her shell, she spent most of the day bumping into the other eggs, encouraging them to come out and play, we had lots with pips in, so at 6pm we had Ginny, with no signs of any others arriving yet, we all went off to bed, the following morning I was woken by Asa at 7.30am and told we had more new arrivals, three more to be exact!!

I was greeted by Sid, Fred and Bellatrix, technically Sid is not a Harry Potter character, but the chick had such crazy colouring, we thought it would be a great friend for little Scrat, who was still hanging in.

At 10.30am George was born, followed by Dumbledore and Tigger at 12.00 and 12.30, so we had a full 8 of 8 hatch which is brilliant

Tigger was named because of his Tiger like appearance, and they said he bounced around like Tigger!!

The Chicks update...batch one due 3rd April 2012

As you may have read, we decided to hatch some chicks to increase our brood, the first batch were due on 3rd April, so when the day arrived, there was no sign of anything, I had already experienced no eggs hatching when we used our broody hen two summers ago, so I was beginning to think it may be another failure...
When I came down on the morning of the 4th I put some clothes in the tumbledryer and heard cheeping!! I had to go and get the children as I thought I had imagined it...
From then onwards we started to progress, a few began having little pips out of them, but no actual chicks...
Asa and I had been watching a DVD and just before we went to bed at 1am on 5th April I noticed that one of the eggs had zipped all the way round, at that moment Kaide walked into the room bleary eyed and watched in amazement as our first chick made an appearance...

The children named this one Potter, as they are all obsessed with Harry Potter!

When I woke up the next morning I was greeted by two chicks, second one was named Diggory!

Throughout Thursday we were joined by Hermione, Weasley and Dobby.
We sadly had one that didn't make it, so I was on alert if any other chicks were struggling and had to make the decision whether to intervene.
Just before I went to bed there was one egg cheeping loudly but didn't seem to be able to get out, so I made the decision to help, after watching numerous You tube videos over the past three weeks, I was armed with tweezers and warm paper towels. The little chick we named Scrat, because it was so little and kept wobbling about, it reminded me of the Ice Age films!
Finally at 1am our last chick of that hatch arrived named Malfoy.