The countdown to Christmas has begun in our house, with the arrival of chocolate advents, decorations and a large box?
Yes we are also celebrating the run up to Xmas with num noms and have a very special advent box which I keep under the tree.
Now there is no calendar as such, instead my girls take turns each day to put there hands inside and get a prize, so it’s a bit like a lucky dip box.
These are the contents inside which include – Num noms, sweets, stickers, colouring sheets and whole lot more yet to be discovered.
We have been happily using our num nom advent box since December 1st, so we are 3 days into it so far.
Day 1. Izebella found a num nom lucky dip box
Day 2. Jordanna got a num noms pack
Day 3. Izebella also got a num noms pack!
And lots more days to go until Santa visits our house once again!
I so wish we had advent boxes like this when I was a little girl.
Lalaloopsy Mittens Fluff ‘n’ Stuff Doll is busy sewing snowflakes into her dress, because there’s a princess ball coming to Lalaloopsy Land! Mittens and her friends have sewn their unique style into their magical gowns. They Lalaloopsy Mittens Fluff ‘n’ Stuff Doll was sewn on December 21st and has been sewn from an eskimo’s scarf.
This is Izebellas new Lalaloopsy doll and it also happens to be the first one she’s had herself. Big sister Jordanna is now getting a bit too old for dolls which is a shame as this is a lovely doll.
Bright blue hair style and matching blue dress and shoes. Her arms and legs fully moveable and she comes with a little pet too. Those big button eyes are just adorable too we think. Like all Lalaloopsy dolls, this one also comes with her own personality and story of when she was created.
As well as a new doll for Izebella, we got a little Xmas snowflake decorating kit too and some sparkly bits to make it. Izebella made this star by herself.
And on the tree it now proudly hangs!
The lalaloopsy dolls make lovely friends for little girls everywhere and can be found in many toy stores before making their way to Santa. The new fluff n stuff dolls cost between £15-£20 depending on the store.
Last week Izebella completed her Christmasaurus santa letter from the Penguin website. It’s now on its way to Santa.
On the website are a few other Xmas themed activities such as this door hanger which only needs printing off and colouring in.
Once cut out, both sides can be glued together and then hung on doors on Christmas Eve.
And don’t forget to get a copy of the Christmasaurus book by Tom Fletcher too.
Did you know; Gel-a-peel isn’t just for making squiggly patterns or even jewellery.It can also be used for decorating objects and as it’s almost Chrismas, we have been decorating Xmas bits using the stuff.
This is the kit and accessories that we started out with.
If you don’t know what Gel-a-peel is, then in short it’s a new type of craft/design product. Tubes of squirty coloured gels that harden as they dry.
And here are my children’s #craftychristmas designs.
The gel-a-peel pens are easy to use and the stuff dries within a few hours. It is best to do it on an old towel or a non carpeted surface just so it doesn’t end up stuck everywhere.
Ryan now has his made stocking in his bedroom, yes boys will enjoy it too. My girls decorations are of course now proudly hung on our tree.
Gel-a-peel packs and accessories can be purchased in most good toy stores.
This post is part of the #CraftyChristmas campaign to celebrate Christmas being less than one month away.
Over the past few weeks I have been sampling a few products which I think would be perfect if your thinking of making your own festive hampers as gifts.
First are two products from Stag bakeries who have been around since 1885. These two products form part of their West coast selection.
The top picture shows savoury dipping crackers in some pretty unusual flavours. The idea being to dip them in your favourite dips. They go well on a buffet table too.
And secondly the new sweet straws. These are really unusual, not quite a biscuit and not quite a pastry but something in between. We really enjoyed these. They can be dipped if you wish, be it in hot drinks or chocolate etc or eat them alone. Full of fruity flavours and just crumble away in the mouth.
Next it’s marshmallows from Baru. I have had a few luxury hampers and in the majority of them, there has been marshmallows of some sort and I love them. Look how chunky this one is.
Baru is a European company and they sell their marshmallows in boxes of 4 and 9. They also have some unusual flavoured marshmallows as well as the chocolate variety.
Christmas just would not be the same without a good old jar of pickled onions. My parents loved them and always had them with Christmas dinner. These here bring a bit of a kick with them as they are hot and spicy.
The onions are big and crunchy with lots of hot flavour and the company is Barry Norman.
Finally and perhaps the most unusual is a vanilla chestnut spread from Clement Faugier. It comes in a tin can and is sweet, creamy, nutty, and certainly unique. You just have to try this stuff!
And how to use it? It’s spread just like any other. Pancakes, waffles, cooking any way you want it and made with all natural ingredients too.
The majority of these lovely festive type products can be purchased in Waitrose and other UK stores and online at the brand websites.
If I had to choose a favourite toy store; without a doubt it would be The Entertainer. They have every toy out there and I can easily get the majority of my children’s want list from there. It’s even better now that a store has opened up in Bolton and I have probably been there 8 times or so in the past month alone. They always have lots of deals on and even a pocket money stand with toys for just a pound. The toy prices do seem lower than other toy stores too.
The lovely people at The Entertainer (knowing how much I love their store) offered to send my 3 children a toy each, so in a way it’s like Santa made an early call to our house this year.
First to toy test is my one and only son Ryan and he has been building with K’nex kits.
This is the sort of thing that Ryan loves and luckily he is pretty good at building and construction type toys. Personally I just don’t have the patience for them.
This kit allows Ryan to build two models, although only one at a time meaning to make the other one you do have to take apart the first one.
There are 402 pieces so as you can imagine, many of them are tiny. It’s best to place a white sheet or board down before tipping the box out. This way you can easily see it all and noting gets lost in the carpet.
The instructions come as images and diagrams rather than any txt. It’s a good idea to read the intro bit at the front of the guide as this gives explanations on how to understand the build better. It is time consuming but Ryan seems to enjoy it. These are the photographs what he took whilst constructing. Yes I left him to it!
The green bit you see is the motor as once constructed it does move. This part requires batteries. Unfortunately half way through the jet, Ryan realised he made a mistake and put some parts on the wrong way. He did get a little upset as this meant taking it all apart and re starting.
Anyway after about 2 hours in total, he finally got there and the finished jet looks like this.
The other veichle to build is a heli plane. This does not come with paper instructions, instead there is a web link to download them. I don’t think Ryan is any rush just yet to take his beloved plane apart, so the heli plane will just have to wait.
This K’nex set can be purchased from Entertainer stores and on the website for a very low price of just £18.75. The original price was £25 and still is in many other stores. It is suitable for children (and the big kids) ages 7 and over.
Take a look at these dudes!
So funky right? These are the new RC inflatables from Bladez toys. Last year Ryan tested out the Minion inflatables and this year it’s the girls turn to have a go.
I chose Dory and Olaf which I knew both girls would love. They both come boxed and deflated. Six AA batteries are needed for each one. Four go in the bottom of the inflatable and two in each remote control. You don’t get a pump with them, we have an electric pump so used that to inflate which took a few minutes for each one. The instructions recommend manual blowing to inflate but there is no way I could of blown them both up myself. They are not overly big but would take a whole lot of puffing to get them up.
Each one has an on/off and on but muted switch on the bottom. When first switched on they will talk and chatter. The remote does not have an on/off switch as such, but it can lose connection if not played with or switched off for a while. They can easily be repaired by holding the forward button towards the bottom of the figure.
These inflatables are so much fun to play with and watch, they speed along the floor, turn, spin, move backwards and make noise. They seem really easy to control and even work on carpeted floors, tho obviously much better on hard floors.
The only worry I have with these is that they could be easily popped or get holes, we do have a cat, so I do make sure my girls keep them in their bedrooms and deflate if they don’t use them for a while. Repair patches do come included.
The inflatables are priced at £24.99 each from Bladez toys. There are many other well known characters to choose from and are very easy to set up and get going.
Congratulations to my most recent winners!
Molton brown – Anne Johnston
Mr Nutcase – Lisa Dolatowski
The Christmasaurus is a story about a boy named William Trundle, and a dinosaur, the Christmasaurus. It’s about how they meet one Christmas Eve and have a magical adventure.
Read more at puffin books.
You can join in the Christmasaurus fun as well as buying the book by heading over to Penguin. Where you can download your own Christmasaurus letter to Santa. All you have to do is download and print the themed letter, fill out the questions and send it to the North Pole just as Izebella has with a little help from me!
It’s the time of year when young children everywhere in the U.K. are not only counting down to Christmas but also excitedly awaiting December 1st as this is the day that those small doors on the advent calendars start to be opened.
Now back in the day, a long time ago, when I was a little girl, advent calendars (tho still exciting) were a little boring compared to the ones in shops today. That’s because behind the doors of those old style advents was just a Christmas image and that’s all. Yup; no chocolate, sweets or fancy gift awaiting us behind the torn card, just a coloured image.
Well times have certainly changed over the many years. I do vaguely remember the introduction of chocolate advent calendars but I remember them being very expensive at the time and I definitely do not recall ever having one. (Or maybe my parents were just tight sods) Anyway these days advent calendars never have just a boring image behind the door. The majority bare a piece of shaped chocolate behind each and these can be purchased for just a pound each in many stores. Many of them come with familiar character images, such as the calendars from Kinnerton.
Kinnerton have lots of character calendars to choose from for boys and girls. As well as the advent calendars they also sell many character chocolates including selection boxes and the majority of their products can be found in supermarkets and store such as Poundland.
Izebella has one of their Trolls calendars which also came personalised. This option has now closed as it’s getting so close to the start of December but the Trolls calendars without personalisation are available pretty much everywhere.
Izebella loves Trolls at the moment and especially so Poppy troll. She has seen this calendar and her little face lit up. I cannot comment on how good the chocolate inside is as it’s not December 1st yet and I don’t believe in opening these early. However I have tried Kinnerton chocolate a few times and it’s not at all disappointing. Also the foil wrap in these calendars keeps the chocolates fresh! (I did always wonder how shops could sell them so early on)
Take a look at their other character chocolate products on the website which include Shopkins, peppa pig, simpsons and many more.