Wednesday, 3 December 2014

Shrink Design Jewellery Review







My little ones love all things crafty so we were very pleased to try something a little bit different that actually took me back to my own childhood.

What’s in the Box:

  • 30 x Jump Rings
  • 3 x Clasps
  • 6 x Clamshell Clasps
  • 4 x Earring Hooks
  • 240 Mini Beads in 3 colours 
  • 7 x Shrink-Plastic Sheets
  • 1m x Plastic stretch Cord
  • 3m x Black Cord
  • Mini Hole Punch
  • 32 Page Colour Instructions book complete with templates





Before diving in we had a think about what designs we wanted to make and my son and my daughter brainstormed some fabulous ideas and interesting designs. As well as making our own designs we also tried some of the templates contained in the Instruction booklet . The first design we tried of our own was a Creeper creature from the Minecraft game as my son, like many children, is absolutely Minecraft mad!

After a bit of colouring then cutting out  we were on to the next stage. Before going further I would suggest to either colour in after you have cut out the shapes or use coloured pencils rather than pens as we made the mistake of using pens directly on the sheet and ended up with ink all over our hands and smudged the designs a little.


Once our designs were drawn, coloured and cut out we punched holes into the various shapes so they could easily be made into jewellery once they were shrunk down too size. We were now ready to pop them in the oven. This was a bit hit and miss as although we had the oven at the advised temperature but the designs shrank a little too quickly causing them to curl. Again I would advise trying at a lower temperature and seeing if that would help the curling issue. I seem to recall that similar products of many, many years ago were on thicker material to begin with which would certainly prevent curling, the material here is certainly thin so I would start at a lower temperature and perhaps experiment with a small piece first.


Overall it was hit and miss as to what designs came out okay and which ones curled a little too much to be useable – unfortunately they snap if you try to uncurl them even before they cool. However we did have some success and once the surviving designs had cooled  we finished making them into jewellery and admittedly they looked pretty fab...

It was a shame one of a pair of earrings broke but we were able to make the other one into another necklace.  Next time we will try to shrink them more slowly under a temperature lower than recommended so they don’t curl too much and we still have a some sheets left so plenty of practice yet to come. We will update this review if we have more success the next time around.

Overall this would make a good little gift for a wide variety of age groups, particularly good for Christmas time. It was simple enough to use the product and despite the issues we had, which are likely resolvable by dropping the temperature (or the use of thicker material), for £9.99 you really can’t go wrong. It passes the time very nicely and all things considered we had fun. My son really loves his Minecraft Keyring and was so proud of himself for making it. 


Friday, 14 November 2014

Why We would like to review the Kurio Tablet?




Being a family of geeks and loving playing with any new tech or gadget .... I know my kids would love to help review the new Kurio Tablet ....

I must admit from a parents perspective the Kurio tablet comes with many benefits from safe web surfing  so no need to worry about them looking at any non age appropriate material.

With so many great apps to not only encourage safe and fun learning but lots of fun for both mum and dad too ...

With great multimedia capabilities from viewing pictures and videos to listening to music  there is plenty of different parts of kurio me and the family can review.

Not only can you setup different users on the Kurio they come pre loaded with loads of great apps, from family favorites from angry birds to wheres my water. So there is an app for everyone on the Kurio.

So not only will we deliver a fab review we  can give a great overview from ages 7 to 11 and both girl and boys opinions too.

The Kurio series  so far includes:

Kurio 4s touch

Kurio Phone

Kurio 7s

Kurio 10s

Kurio Tab

Kurio Pocket

Kurio TAB XL

So please pick us and  watch the Kurio magic unfold in great pictures and videos with a  fab review to showcase all the fab features ......

we would happy to review any of your products and cant wait for this fantastic opportunity





Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Blogger Break !! I am Back

So  I am sorry I have not been here much but after starting a new job and moving house and other exciting news .... which I will let you all know about at some point soon !!! I have been very very busy with homelife and juggling new job...

But I am back and getting ready for christmas and some exciting reviews too !!! 

So please keep a look out for those also I am going to be looking at some deals for christmas and where to get the top toys and great prices too !! As we all know christmas does not come cheap with three kids especially when two of them have birthdays just before Christmas YIKES!! 

S o hope you are all well ... and onward and upward so they say !! 




Also I will be sharing some top tips and ideas to make your Halloween oh so scary and fun !!!

Monday, 21 July 2014

Febreze Sleep Serenity Review



So I was asked to try out Febreze's new Sleep Serenity range thanks to Super Savvy Me, and  I could not wait to get them in my hands. I am a big fan of  Febreze and the variety of products they do.

So once my pack arrived in the post the first and hardest question was which one do I try first, Moonlit Lavender, Warm milk and Honey and Quiet Jasmine.

So on the first few nights I decided on the Warm milk and Honey so about hour before bed I sprayed the bed with all over and the smell was divine ... almost wanted to dive right into bed (but it was bit wet so I thought better of it)!

Roll on Bedtime.

Now I do have trouble sleeping some nights it takes me a while to switch off ... and  on many occasion I do suffer with a broken night sleep due to my overactive thyroid sometimes making it hard to sleep, So I was quite anxious to see if this would work.

So upon waking the next morning I found to have slept all night and felt a bit sleepy but that is to be expected seeing as I never normally sleep the whole night through, whether this was bit of mind over matter only time would tell.


So after a few more nights I was starting to see a pattern that my sleeping habits were definitely improving, So I thought this was a good time to try out  Moonlit Lavender.  Lavender not being one of my fav smells I must say many years of growing up with lavender bushes all over the garden and vases of it all over the family  house, you could say I was sick of smell or immune to it. Once again I used it over a few nights and found the result to be about the same I was getting more sleep and finding that I was waking up more refreshed and to my surprise the Lavender smell was not too strong and really pleasant and  I quite liked it.

So I started letting my friends and family in on my sleeping secret ... and explaining why I was getting more sleep and how I was doing it, I even let my mum use the Warm Milk and Honey mist to see how she would get on. I gave out most of the coupons to my friends and got them to fill out a little survey.



So it was time for a change and time to try Quiet Jasmine, now out of the three I think this one was my least favorites the results were the same I was still getting a good nights sleep but not so keen on the scent of this one seemed to be missing something but not sure what.

I then decided not to use any of the Febreeze Serenity range for a whole week ... and gave the rest of the samples out to friends and neighbours to try ... and for a few days I seemed to be doing okay going to bed waking up all seemed to be going fine.. but then it started again I started waking up in the night and not been able to sleep. So the next morning I went to the shop and purchased Warm Milk and Honey and Moonlit Lavender and made sure I sprayed them onto the bed before bedtime ... took about a day to get back into a nice sleeping pattern and I now find I use it the sprays every other day to get a good balance of waking up feeling more refreshed after a good nights kip.



So after Trying out the Febreze Serenity range I can say its a must for my house not only have I found to benefit my sleeping and now being a must in my bedtime behaviors. It not only smells great and many of commented on what air fresheners I am using and then being surprised when  I inform them its Febreze Serenity range..  I have found it relaxes the kids before bed too, creates a calming ambiance around the house which is great when trying to get the kids settled at bedtime.

So thank you Febreze cant wait to see what is next up your creative sleeve.

Also grab your £1.00 off coupon on Super Savvy Me so you can try the new range too let me know which scent is your fav!



Monday, 23 June 2014

Minecraft figures Series 2 Review from Character



Myself and my two young boys were so thrilled to be selected as reviewers for the new Series 2 Minecraft figures from Character.  We will be reviewing these fantastic new Minecraft figures over the coming few weeks, starting now with the Steve With Diamond Armour figure and Animal Mobs six figure pack.


We are absolutely Minecraft crazy in our house and own copies of the seminal sandbox indie game on both home computer and game consoles, I even made a Minecraft themed cake for a recent birthday. My youngest son really enjoys watching the Minecraft based Stampy Cat videos on YouTube and hopes one day he will be featured in Stampy’s Love Garden.
What, I hear you ask what is Stampy’s Love Garden? Well it’s a place that features in Stampy’s Lovely World, a feature of every Stampylongnose Minecraft video. It’s a memorial garden in which Stampy and his friends show thanks and appreciation for their special fans, whether it’s for drawing a Stampy themed picture, baking a Stampy themed cake or simply by posting a favourite comment on their fan page. Sometimes all you have to do is ask! Fingers crossed my son will get there one day.
Back to the figures! We already have a few Minecraft figures from Series 1 and knew what to expect in terms of quality so we could not wait for the postman to finally bring the new range to our door and pretty much tore the packaging apart just to get our hands on them!

We are very lucky to have a great back garden for exploration so perfectly suited for real-world Minecraft play in which Steve and his animal friends could go crafting, exploring or just enjoy watching the sunset after a long day of building. At first glance the Series 2 figures are much the same as Series 1 in many ways, reassuringly so,  although there are new designs for Diamond Steve, Iron Golem, the Villager and the Animal mob. Familiarity is no bad thing as the figures are exceptionally high quality and represent extremely well their pixel related counterparts. These are in no way a cheap imitation of these hugely popular characters and fans of Minecraft will be thrilled with the look and feel. In short these are stunning articulated action figures - colour, look and even the limited range of movement (as in the game) are perfect!
Steve With Diamond Armour comes with his very own diamond sword and full set of armour including detachable helmet and a diamond ore block ready for mining. The only thing the boys said they would have liked was a diamond pickaxe instead of the sword, or even both if possible.
Animal Mob includes the cow, chicken, pig, sheep, tamed wolf and the ocelot all of which are articulated.  The boys loved that this set included all of the main animals from the game and I liked this set a lot too due to the fact there are no small pieces that could go missing like some of the other sets have.


Overall we are very, very pleased with series 2 and so far they look really good and feel really well made. As you might expect they have been put through their paces by some very excited young children and I can confirm that the they take a good bashing and would be quite hard to break.
Adults/older children just looking to collect Minecraft figures won't be disappointed as they would look pretty awesome on a desk or in a presentation cabinet. With their interesting designs they certainly look different and are certain to provide a great talking point.

We are very much looking forward to seeing what the next three instalments have lined up so keep checking out the blog for updates about what’s just around the corner in the world of Minecraft. I wonder if they will ever look at doing a set featuring Stampylongnose and his friends such as I Ballistic Squid, Amy Lee etc. I am sure it would be very popular and I know my son would love to have this set too. Who knows – in the world of Minecraft literally anything is possible.

Minecraft is available now on PC, Xbox 360, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, Playstation 4, Linux, Android and more!
Minecraft Series 2 figures are available now from all major toy retailers.

Monday, 9 June 2014

Dinosaur Roar! Apps book and more


My son loves this book a lot and its been a firm favorite for a long time now so my was so happy when they brought out an App!! Only £1.99 its a great buy from the book being a great feature in the app and colouring pages, To getting you Own Dino name Robert- o- Docus and Mummy-A-Tops. Its really good value for money. The only downside for us we have it only on such a small screen.


Every Night   Robert- o- Docus loves to have the story read to him by the kids doing the voices in the book this was a really great idea, and then having the choice to be able to record your own was so much fun especially when you listen to it afterwards. The app is really child friendly and easy to use that I am able to let him get on with it without having to worry.

After visiting their Facebook Page we also found out about a great competition they were doing featuring your child's roar, Where Paul and Henrietta Stickland will be picking one child to win a brand new iPad Mini which would be amazing. So my son loved to take part he had to dress up and wanted to feature the book in his video too he was a natural and here is our video below.



We are also very much excited about the Dinosaur Roar! tour and hoping we will be able to go and see that in either London or Plymouth once tickets go on sale. So make sure you subscribe on their website to find out more information when its available.

My son has so many costumes and dino figures he is even looking forward to the new Jurassic park film coming out next year I believe. He even dressed up as Dr Grant at school once before, they had to pick a character from their favorite book. He never won a prize but he loved his costume and still wears it now.



So why not pick up your own copy of Dinosaur Roar! and see what its all about after 20 years its still one of the best selling childrens picture books designed and illustrated and written by Paul and Henrietta Stickland. It will always be a family favorite for us its already been passed down by his big sister who's 11 and his brother whose 8 and its still going strong after all these years.

And if you get chance to have a play with the app we would love to know what dino names you got!

Also check out our fab review on 4M Kidz Labs Volcano Making Kit Review










4M Kidz Labs Volcano Making Kit Review



We have had a bit of Dino week in our house, From reading Dinosaur Roar! by Paul and Henrietta Stickland to filming my son do his Scary roar  for a competition its been a busy week.



But we also managed a trip to London  and while we there we had to take a visit to the Natural History Museum. So not only did my son learn lots about Darwin and how the world began we also checked out the Dinosaurs too. He loved looking out how big they were and he even knew a lot of them by name (Put me to shame)! We also paid a visit to how Earthquakes happen and how Volcanoes are formed he loved this the most seeing how they feature in a lot of Dinosaur books.

So when it was time to go we stopped off at the Gift Shop and after a while we stumbled on  4M Kidz Labs Volcano Making Kit . So he had to buy one I was fine with it seeing as we normally come away with a pen or something that has no educational value or breaks as soon as we get home.

Contents

  • 6 tubs of paint
  • 2 Packets of Plaster Mould
  • 2 Elastic Bands
  • 1 Cardboard Cutouts of houses and people
  • 1 Instruction booklet
  • 1 Volcano Cast


The volcano was really easy to piece together and took no time at all once made you use the elastic band s provided to hold the Volcano in place ready for the plaster mix to be made and poured into the mould.

Get a old jug or bowl in our case a bucket and empty both packets of the plaster mould into the bucket add water and mix well. Once the mixture is ready pour this into the Volcano mould being careful not to spill any (top tip get a plate of a bit of cardboard under the mould for any plaster that may come out of some of the cracks ) we had a little but not much!

Tapped the mould a few times to let any air bubble float to the top and pop. Then leave the mould for about 2- 3 hours to set at room temperature. Once set remove very carefully from the mould and leave for about another 20 hours before painting.


The next day we were ready to paint ...  Once painted and left to dry we were ready for some Volcano action.

What you will need

  • Bicarbonate of soda 
  • Vinegar
  • Red Paint
  • Spatula

The kids proceeded to add the Bicarbonate of soda into crater of the Volcano with a dash of red paint and then poured in the vinegar with a  matter of moments the Volcano came to life and started to bubble.The kids were thrilled even the Dinosaurs loved watching too.



Once we were finished we tidied everything up and cleaned out the Volcano, which can be stored and the experiment repeated anytime you want. If not looks great as a talking piece in any kids room.

Not only was this fun to make even if you had to wait for a day to get to the exciting part it was educational for the kids learning about science with a hands on experiment. 


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Sunday, 1 June 2014

The Cool Create Club!



The Cool Create Club is a great place for kids to go and get inspired to create awesome creations. There are lots of craft activities to get their creative juices flowing in no time perfect for rainy days and holidays to keep them entertained and the best part it’s all free.

Membership is free and each month you can send your creations you have made and if you are lucky enough to feature on the The Cool Create Wall you will win a cool prize.
We were lucky enough to win one ourselves last month which was a Suteki! Check out the review here.



With some great prizes to be won and fab creative ideas such as making Fathers day cards and this month the chance to win a Swap Watch by answering the question on the main page you would be silly not to sign up.

Well Done to this month's winners 



So please click the link now and sign up and enter some cool creations too and see if you could feature on next month’s Cool Create Wall please remember to say KTBennett This is me! blog sent you that way they know how you found out about this fab new club!

Suteki Stencil Station Review



Thanks to the Cool Create Club we recently won a Suteki Stencil Station after being featured on last month’s wall. It arrived in the post last week and as it was delivered on a rainy day it was the ideal opportunity to dive straight in and have some creative time. 
Each stencil has been colour coded so for example the green stencil is used for green paint, yellow for yellow paint and so on. The information booklet provided lets you know the order they go so as long as you follow the instructions there is no chance of getting stuck or creating anything less than a mini masterpiece! We soon had everything set up decided to start by making the girl picture first.



After the first layer of paints has been applied, in this case the yellow layer, you need to wait for the paint to dry. This is a good opportunity to wash out the sponge which is easily removed by un-screwing the bottom (please note: take care when washing the sponge as ours eventually came a little loose). 




As my daughter was not keen on watching paint dry we decided to speed things along with the help of a hairdryer and were quickly back in action and ready to apply the next paint layer - green. Another bit of manoeuvring with the hairdryer and we were soon onto the next layer, this time a pretty pink. We found a little issue getting right into the corners with the round headed sponge and felt that it might have been better if the sponge was square or if both options were offered but after a little manoeuvring we managed to get the job done. The final paint layer was black and once applied and dried the picture was complete and looked like really professional. We were very pleased with the result.



As things had worked out so well we went onto the next picture, following all the steps as laid out. Once again the results were fab and really the only downside was that we wished there was at least one more stencil to do, particularly as there was enough paint left over. It’s never a bad thing if your downside is a positive and overall, given the final results, the Suteki Stencil Station could be considered good value for money at it’s RRP of £14.99.




Both myself and my daughter were very pleased with our finished pieces of art which look even better and are ready to display after using the frames included with the set. 



Friday, 30 May 2014

How do you keep your children active and entertained during summer?

This is a good question we all ask ourselves how can we keep our kids entertained during the summer one without it costing too much and another that it's fun and keeps them entertained.


Well last year I covered a big section of my blog on this during the February Half term check it out here ...

So how can you fill 6 weeks I thought I would show you a few ideas I have up my sleeve.

We have just moved house in the last few months and our biggest challenge so far is the Garden. We have a lot of garden to try and clear so one of my ideas will be getting this under control we have already made a start so hoping we will have some more of this finished soon so we can think about getting some sand pits and outdoor toys for the kids to keep them amused even a paddling pool for those hot days (fingers crossed).




As you can see its not looking to bad already but the bottom section will be the hardest part so if i can get the top half done in time and get some things for the kids to play on, least that way they can have fun while poor mummy works on the tackling something out of sleeping beauty worst nightmare!

So whats next well we are lucky we live in Plymouth and have some great free events during June / August from La Solitaire du Figaro which is a great event for the city and the kids love watching all the boats on the sound plus there is a cool jazz and blues festival too. We also have Armed Forces day which is a great way to learn about the Forces last year we even got to sit on a Helicopter the boys loved that. 


We then have Flavour Fest which is great fun we get to try lots of different foods from all over and get to see how food gets transformed into daily meals, with lots of local traders its great to get into the community spirit and support the local area. One year we got to try blueberries never had them before and now me and the kids love them all thanks to the Food Festival. We also get some great ideas for cooking at home and as you know we love cooking check out some of our recent creations.

 So we will be doing plenty of cooking during the holidays and the kids love being so hands on in the kitchen and this is a great way bonding and having fun and cooking does not cost much and great for a rainy day too! We also love doing craft based projects being a creative family so we always try and keep empty boxes on hand so we can paint and decorate. 

In August we are proud to host the British Fireworks Championships  its a great two day event which is free and we get to watch some of the best fireworks in the country on display. 

These events are a few things that our on offer in Plymouth during the holidays so there are plenty of free events to keep my kids busy. But on those occasions where we can afford to do something more we have a great Aquarium nearby which we love to go and they also provide some great classes and activities to keep the kids entertained as well has great rates to go back and visit again its a firm favorite with the kids.

Other local attractions include woodlands which is one of the fun local theme parks in the area about a hour drive its a great way to spend a day having fun in the sun  or playing in the ball pool lots to do and a  good day out.



We also have National Trust passes so lots of great places to visit one of our favorites is Saltrum House where they film Tim Burtons Alice in Wonderland. The kids love going there having there face painted and running around the Gardens. We normally pack a picnic too and with a  park on hand and ducks to feed its another great way to spend a day out. 




We are lucky enough to have so many wonderful things on our doorstep the Barbican will be holding their festival of the sea once again and last year the kids got to make there own costumes and walk in the parade around the town, Also have the Eden Project nearby too and some amazing beaches when the weather is hot. 



Last but not least we have Dartmoor, another great place to go during the summer with rivers to swim in and rocks to climb and big open spaces to run in its great. Last year we went for a swim in a place called Cadover Bridge the kids loved it so much they keep asking when we can go back so this will be a must again this summer. I also took them to a place called the rock which is a massive rock they can climb kids love it plus i can take a  chair and watch them without having to worry only that they don't fall .... 


So you can see Plymouth is a great place to go during the holiday we are just lucky we live here with so many things to do and most being free, there will plenty to talk about this summer on my blog, So weather the weather is hot or not we have some great ideas planned for keeping the kids entertained. 

I hope this may have given you some great ideas to plan ahead and find out what you city will be doing during the summer, if all else fails you know where to stay ... But keep checking out my blog as we will be posting some great places to go and things to do and this hopefully would have show you what too look forward too in the coming months. 

And hopefully I may even be lucky enough to review this 12ft  Twist Trampoline from EXIT now that we have a  garden big enough to fit one of these thanks to ActivitytoysDirect.com. If you have a  blog and fancy a chance at winning find all the details here:


Thursday, 29 May 2014

Home Made Burgers




Like I promised here is a picture of tonight's tea we made homemade Burgers topped with melted cheese and bacon with added mushrooms fried onions and peppers .....





So this is how we made it ...

I bought two lots of minced beef about 540g in total added one chopped onion, Atbsp of Mustard with one egg yolk a tbsp of olive oil and about 30g of chopped Coriander. Then chucked this into a big bowl and mashed all together to make 8 burgers.



Pop these onto the grill to cook once they have cooked prepare the bacon and then place this on top of the burgers with a slice of processed burger cheese (we used dairylea slices)  pop these back into the oven.

While they are melting fry up the onions,mushrooms,and peppers and toast the burger buns.



Then the fun part making the burger I layered the onions and peppers on the bottom then added the burger with the bacon and melted cheese placed the mushrooms on the top and it was complete and it tasted amazing even the kids loved it which is great seeing as my boys are quite fussy when it comes to food.

The fun part was trying to eat it !!! 



Catch Up Time !



Well had a busy week so far got a job interview this week at Build-A-Bear cant wait for that also had a few fab new reviews to do this week one of which will be live later today Suteki!  if all goes well. And a great opportunity for winning some cool stuff yourself more to follow today.



But please keep checking back for Iron Man 3 ArcStrike Toy review thanks to Toys R us toyologist program also received some Febreze from there new sleep serenity range thanks to super savvy.



Also a Box of OMG came today back full of goodies for the kids more to follow here too.



Also last monday me and my WWE crazed son went to the O2 Arena at watched WWE live was a great night and I even had fun too check out how close we were greats seats!



In the meantime have a look at what we have been cooking in the Bennett household this week from dino cupcakes + Popping candy to a home cooked chinese and Banana Fritters complete with syrup yummy!



Tonights menu homemade burgers with bacon and mushrooms and ships nom nom will post pics of this later too!



Tuesday, 13 May 2014

Fairy Platinum Dishwasher Tablet Review



We love trying new and exciting things in the Bennett household, but this time it was something I could really get my hands dirty with.



I was lucky enough to try out Fairy’s Platinum tablets for my dishwasher, now I normally just go and buy whatever tablets are on offer at the supermarket not really caring much on how well they might perform.
But after taking this trail run I think I will be buying Fairy from now on.

Fairy Dishwasher Tablets come in a great resalable bag perfect for kids and kittens not to get their hands on them, so great for storage and safety. The tablets come in two parts one side powder the other liquid detergent which contains a powerful anti-grease action great for stuck on grime. The tablets are encased in a film which dissolves without leaving a sticky residue on your dishes.






So we got to work trying these tablets out and letting all our friends and family know about how great the cleaning action can be, by handing out coupons and a free pack along with a little questionnaire to see how they got on.

And if you are anything like me the thought of putting your hand in the sink with floating weetabix or porridge or thick grease after a Spaghetti Bolognese night, there is nothing worse I can tell you but after putting all these horrid dishes in your dishwasher and finding they come out looking like new then you will be amazed and you can see for yourself the result are fab.

We had a go and trying  a few challenges from the kittens food bowls with dried in food to the cup with tea stains and each time the tablets did it.... is there nothing they can’t do!!!!




So not only will the tablets leave your dishes looking great it’s also has a high standard of degreasing your dishwashers filter too, I suggest you try the filter challenge for yourself I am sure it wont dissapoint ....





So needless to say we have now been fully converted to using Fairy all the time and so have my friends and family the only question WILL YOU BE TOO !!!