gadgets and gizmos

All posts in the gadgets and gizmos category

One “cheeky” little gnome 

Published April 13, 2017 by Bizzimummy

As many of you probably already know by now, I absolutely love unusual and novelty items. I love quirky things for both my house and my garden. As it’s now starting to get slightly warmer I have been getting a few ornaments and plants for my garden and here is one of the latest things.

This is one cheeky gnome and comes from Nuku which is home to a big assortment of unusual gifts

The cheeky mooning gnome also doubles up as a solar light when it’s dark, meaning that the light literally does shine right out of his backside. 

All I had to do when I got him was switch him on and position the little fella in a sun spot in the garden and let him absorb a few rays via his special panel. 

My kids thought he was a very funny gnome indeed with Izebella shouting that he’s sticking his bum out. 

Well we waited a few hours once receiving him and look what happened when it got dark!

His little backside lights up for all to see. It’s quite a bright light too considering the size of the gnome. It’s enough to light up a small flower bed and give a bit of a glow to a garden. 

This picture was taken at night but with the flash on so it does not show the solar light lit up but more the glow it gives off around it. 

Mooning gnome costs £18.99 and he’s perfect for any garden in need of a bit of mooning and fun. He’s bound to get many people interested and asking where they can get one.

I think gnome will be fine throughout the Spring and Summer months outside, but as with most solar lights and features; the colder weather can cause damage so he may just have to go into hibernation in the colder months. 

National stationery week

Published March 30, 2017 by Bizzimummy

Next month is National stationary week beginning April 24th. This is a yearly event and for the second year running, a digital competition is launched to celebrate the written word. 

Bloggers and online influencers everywhere are taking part to write about any stationery related topic they wish in the hope to win the “Blogger of the year” award.

To get me in the mood for next months stationery week, I was sent a lovely bundle of stationery items. 

My package of stationery goodies come from a variety of stationery brands including Stabilo, Mustard, Maped/helix and Sheaffer. We have lots of different bits and there is something got us all in this bundle.

My favourite item is my new Oxford fountain pen from the Mapedhelix brand. A fountain pen is the one stationery item I longed for when I was at high school but never got. They seem to have come down in price a bit over the years and like a big kid, I was overjoyed to finally get one. 

This fountain pen comes with 5 refills so should last a while. My (almost) teenaged son already has his eyes on it so looks like I’ll be hiding this away.

Also from the same brand – Mapedhelix, a few other useful bits and bobs. 

I do love the quirky little stationery things like this. I really enjoyed picking stationery out for my son when he started high school too and these are just the type of things that he can use. There is the Zenoa+ eraser, a bunny sharpener  which younger kids will like as the bunny teeth eat away at the inserted pencil. 

The red tube thing is Color’peps superhero paint which I am going to save for the warmer weather, when painting can be done outdoors. And finally a sample of the new double sided Color’peps duo tip felt pens. These pens have one fine tip for drawing/writing and a thicker tip for colouring in.

The next brand is quite a colourful collection of stationery things. Mustard Products will no doubt appeal to children, teens and stationery loving adults. 

The funny cactus things at the bottom are page markers. It’s hard to believe but this little set actually contains 100 page markers in total. Page markers help to point out important documents. They stick on and come off easily. 

Sticky notes – have become something I regularly rely on. No I don’t leave notes for my children or anything like that but I do leave notes on my door off parcel couriers. When I run out of sticky tape these can be a life saver. My kids also use them for various things and the watermelon design is just fab. 

These rainbow coloured pencils, quickly caught the eye of my 4 year old daughter. 

I’ve never seen pencil crayons like this, the tips are muticoloured with all the rainbow colours in them, so depending on how we hold the pencil, it’s a different colour each time.

Sheaffer seems to be a more grown up brand of stationery with a selection of fine pens, gifts and other writing accessorises. 

I never really understand why pens come in boxes such as this one, unless for a gift, a box really is not needed as it just gets thrown away. I have given this pen to my son to use at school as it is a quite fine looking pen. I have kept the notebook and it has a pretty good section for people just lols me. – yes a blogger section.

Stabilo – Is a brand I am very familiar with. Their stationery appeals to both kids and adults alike. Bright, bold and a mixture of colours. They have a good selection of pens, pencils, highlighters and other funky writing materials. It’s a school kids paradise. 

Write size is quite a new brand. Their main concept being pencils for children, but at the correct size for little hands. Their pencils are developed in many sizes to lessen the strain of writing and gripping on young hands. A correct size pencil can also help improve handwriting. 

And last but not least – a new notebook from Nuco international. Lots of bright colours and different styles to choose from, notebooks that will certainly stand out in a classroom. 

Wow, we are in stationery heaven! #writingmatters. 

Infinity crates: A geeky subscription! 

Published March 10, 2017 by Bizzimummy

For those of us (like myself) who like collecting lots of strange and rather geeky/nerdy type items; there is Infinity crates. And yes it’s a subscription box service, you all know how much I love them. 

There are a few box choices including one just for kids. Each one comes filled with all sorts of geeky things and if your not sure what I mean by geeky then think retro, superheroes, computer game characters, heroes, villains, princesses, movies that sort of stuff that straange people like me love to get. 

As for the actual items – there is usually a t-shirt of some sort in every box and you can choose the size too. Also products such as key rings, figures, stationary, toys, clothing, posters, cups etc. The boxes are always a surprise but the contents are pretty good. 

These are the contents insife our Infinity crate.


We got a Dark energy t-shirt, an apron, Spider-Man mug, poker card game set, a pop vinyl figure and some picture cards so not a bad box at all. I absolutely love the pop figures, and have started a small collection. Ryan also loves this type of stuff and talked me into giving him the rest of it including the t-shirt. He loves cooking too so also wanted the apron as well as the mug. I have no doubt he will also learn how to play poker soon too. Therefore happy faces all round. 

And I’m just happy with my daredevil figure which will be staying in its box! 

And if you like this sort of geeky collectors stuff as much as we do, then maybe grab yourself a few boxes over at Infinity Crates. Prices start from £7.99. 

My young scientists “Discover with Dr Cool”

Published February 7, 2017 by Bizzimummy

All three of my children seem to have some sort of interest in science and experiments. My older two have a fair few science kits and Izebella seems fascinated by what they make with them.

Discover with Dr Cool also loves science and sells a very good range of science kits and experiments in many categories of science to suit most ages. The company is American based but many of their products can be purchased on Amazon UK. Just type in “discover with dr cool” to bring up the products.
All three of my children have a new kit and they all love them. Ryan has a rock tumbler, however rock tumbling takes time so he can’t give his full opinion for another 2/3 weeks yet. So today is about the girls kits which are both very different.

Jordanna (age 9) received this gem stone dig kit.

The kit contained a hard stone plaque which appeared to have a large purple crystal inside it, however this is quite deceptive as it’s just a painted image. To get the real gems, Jordanna had to dig.

And dig she did! A small scraper tool comes included but we found a plastic knife also comes in useful. The digging is quite tough at first but got easier as we went on (yes I had to help her). We found a little water helped too and once the stone started to be chipped away it was more like sand or clay.

Inside the plaque were 15 gems/precious stones that Jordanna discovered by digging. There is a booklet with the set to tell us what each one is. We did find one or two of the stones were not listed tho. 

The stones needed a good wash and a little brush comes included to brush away dust. The magnifying glass gives us a better look at each stone. The stones are unpolished but as a certain someone now has a rock tumbler, this can easily be changed.

This kit falls under the geology and excavation (digging) categories of science. I myself love collecting rocks and gems such as the ones Jordanna found.

National Geographic Mega Gemstone kit can be purchased from Amazon for £29.99. The digging project does not take long to complete but the gems and stones can be kept forever. For ages 6 and over.

And now for Izebella (age 4). Being so young, I would not of thought that there would be many science type kits about for Izebella. Obviously she cannot use chemicals of any sort, nor use anything mechanical or sharp. Gems and stones are also a little risky as she sometimes puts things in her mouth. 

Well it seems Dr Cool got it bang on with their Ultimate Dino sand kit.

This one is suitable for kids age 3 and over so even young ones can get a taste of science and even a little bit of history.

The kit contains a bag of sand, dinosaur figures/mouldy and a play tray. Now the idea of sand and a young child playing with it in the home will probably fill most parents with dread , the thought of bits of sand all over the carpet!However fear not because this is the special sort of kids sand that does not dry out. It sort of clumps together and we can even lift chunks of it together. Mess is minimal and it’s not sticky either, it feels a little like play dough.

There are many ways that Izebella can play with her kit. There are six dinosaur figures, all different species which come accompanied with the booklet describing them all with a few facts. 

She can learn a little about dinosaurs by me reading bits to her. We also play a game of hide the dinosaurs, where I hide the dinosaurs in the sand and she digs with her hands to find them. She loves it!

Then there are the moulds, again six of them which act a little like the sand castles and shapes we use on the beach. Fill with sand, smooth off and tap them out to get sand dinosaur figures.

The kit also contains a rather surprising and very real item – It’s dinosaur poop and it’s apparently over 50 million years old. 

Luckily it’s totally fossilised, feels just like a regular stone and does not stink. It is a very interesting and extremely old piece of Earths history. This can also be buried in the sand or kept in its packet, maybe it will be around in another 50 million years!

So what does little Izebella think of the sand dinosaurs and poop? 

Yes it smiles all around and very minimal mess for me! Once finished playing the sand can be kept and stored in a sealed container along with the dinosaur parts, ready to play with another time. This one is also on Amazon for £13.99.

Well my girls loved their kits and Ryan also loves his new gadget, his review will be here in the next few weeks.

Love the Sales! 

Published January 23, 2017 by Bizzimummy

Yes I do love the sales but that was not actually a question. I wanted to share a website that I recently came across called Love the Sales. This website is particularly handy for people like myself who just love bargains. Love the Sales don’t exactly sell products themselves but they partner with hundreds of stores worldwide to find the best offers and discounts and put them all in one place. By using this website you can find the best deals on items you really want. Prices change frequently so it helps to shop around for deals and this website makes it easier as all the main brands are in one place. 

I have just finished decorating my hallway and my home was missing one important thing – A big mirror. I used the Love the sales website to find the perfect one. I typed in mirror into the search bar and many of them came up, so I then sorted via price order and finally found this one.

This Shelley oval mirror is sold by Marks and Spencer’s. The usual price is £69.00 and the price sticker was on the back of the mirror when it arrived. However Love the sales tells shoppers the now discounted price of £35.99 which is almost half price. See it for yourself here.

And now I have a very beautiful and fairly large mirror taking pride of place on my hallway wall. 

It’s a lovely pretty mirror, the colour states pale blue but it’s more of a turquoise or very pale green colour which works fine with the purple background. It’s 60cm high and designed with flowers around the edging.

I am very happy with my mirror and will be checking Love the Sales for more bargains.

My Dolce Gusto Jovia 

Published January 16, 2017 by Bizzimummy

It’s not often, in fact probably never that I post about presents that I have received for Christmas but this one is so good that I just had to.

This is the jovia machine which is part of the Nescafé Dolce Gusto range of machines. It comes in red and white as well as black and unlike some other machines on the market it’s pretty compact and small size making it perfect for kitchen sides.

I would of never really considered or used a machine like this as they are classed as coffee machines. I don’t mins the odd cup of normal coffee now and then but I do prefer tea and when it comes to coffee I prefer my lattes.Well this one machine does it all. Latte, espresso, cappucino, cafe au lait, Lundo and a few other stronger coffee types, but it doesn’t stop there! It also makes several types of hot chocolate, tea lattes, and a few cold tea and ice coffee varieties. It’s a clever little thing isn’t it?

To make the drinks you need to buy the pods. The Dolce Gusto pods are compatible with all their machines including this one. There are so many varieties and it helps to shop around as not all stores sell them all.

The pods come in boxes of 16. Some of the boxes will make 16 drinks and some will make 8. The reason for this difference is that some drinks, such as the latte’s and hot chocolates require 2 pods to make the drink. One pod being the milk and the other being the drink. The pods vary in price at different stores but usually between £3-£4 per box. Asda currently has a 3 box for £10 deal on which I’ve took advantage of. You do get 4 pods with the machine to try out and also a £10 voucher to buy pods on the Dolce gusto site.

Once pods are bought, all you need then is water. There is literally next to nothing in setting the machine up. A small tank of water attaches to the back and the instructions recommend a machine clean on first use prior to making drinks. 

Making the drinks is easy and faster than making a hot drink with a kettle. Once the water tank is full of cold water and attached, a pod is placed in the pod holder like this. 

The pod holder is closed and the machine switched on. A red light will flash for about 30 seconds and then turn green and it’s then ready to make drinks. The lever at the top can be switched either side for cold or hot water. I haven’t really used any of the cold drink varieties but do enjoy the hot drinks. The lever is switched to hot and the hot water is instant even tho the tank stays cold. The pod gets pierced and the drink gets made. If the drink requires 2 pods then you simply stop it, and insert a second pod and repeat.

The pod boxes tell you how much water to use per cup/glass. There is no measurement indicator device to accurately measure the water but it’s pretty easy to work it out by size of glass being used. 

I can now make much loved hot drinks in my own home for a fraction of the price of coffee shops. And yes it even froths the milk.

Needless to say I have used my registration voucher and took advantage of the supermarket offers. I think I now need a pod stand.

Those are all my favourite drinks so far. I have never tried a tea latte before but it’s delicious, that’s what’s in the cup by the way. I’m not a lover of very strong coffee or ice teas so I can’t comment on those but I have not been disappointed with the pods I have tried. There is even a nesquik box of pods out at the moment too which I am yet to try.

This is probably one of the best presents I’ve had and I would highly recommend one of these machines if you enjoy hot drinks and lattes. The price for the machine seems to vary greatly from what I’ve seen on line. Some places sell them for around £40 whilst others are £65 and upwards so it’s hard to give an actual price. 

New Bluetooth speakers 

Published January 9, 2017 by Bizzimummy

These are the speakers which after testing out, I gave to my 12 year old for Christmas.He loves his technology and music and absolutely loves these.

The company is August international and their products can be purchased via amazon and include other speakers and headphones. These particular speakers are the MS515.

Both speakers come included. The set is portable and works via a Bluetooth connection. The majority of smart phones and tablets will be compatible with these and most iPhones certainly are. They can also connect to televisions with Bluetooth giving the tv a surround sound effect. 

The speakers connect together via a short wire and charge via USB. Apart from the connecting wire they are pretty much wireless and very portable due to the small size. The clear big sound makes up for the small size. The audio is clear and similar to what you would expect from a larger stereo.

The Bluetooth connection seems good enough, we tested them with the iPhone upstairs and speakers down and they still worked fine without interruptions tho I am unsure on the exact range.
These speakers seem great for teens and especially if space is limited. Ryan has a box room and so fitting a large stereo in would be difficult. These simply connect to his iPhone and he can play his music anytime anywhere. 

These can be bought from Amazon for £47.45.

My retro gifts from Nuku

Published December 14, 2016 by Bizzimummy

Everyone knows how much I love my retro gadgets and gizmos, anything that brings back memories from the 1980s/1990s. Anyway I came across a rather cool gift website called NUKU. They sell all sorts of funky and unusual gifts and  gadgets. Stuff for the home, gifts for him, her, the kids and lots more. I really enjoyed having a browse through it all. Then I came across two items which are both really retro and things I remember from my younger years, and well; I just had to have them both.
Hands up if you remember this! 🙋

Yes it’s the old favourite – Big mouth Billy Bass or otherwise known as the singing fish. I loved these years ago, sad but true! They can be hard to come across in the modern high street gift stores these days but when I was about 11 they were everywhere, including on the walls of many homes. 
If your a bit younger than myself and have no idea what this fish thing is – well it’s a novelty gadget which either gets hung on the wall or stood on a shelf via its stand. It has two on functions – sensor and not sensor. When the sensor is on it detects movement and when off it works via a press of the button. 

This one plays two songs – “Don’t worry be happy” and “I will survive”. It also dances and wiggles its tail and it’s quite amusing to watch. My kids love it.

The best way to show you what it does is by making this short video of the thing in action. 

And that’s the singing fish which costs £18.99 from Nuku.
Now there is one item that my bathroom has been lacking since I moved to this house and that is a toilet roll holder. Yes I have toilet roll but they usually end up sat on top of the toilet. Well all that has changed now – as I now have one and a very unusual one too.

Yes you are seeing correctly – It’s a Polaroid style toilet roll holder. Very cool and rather funky. It’s tough plastic with a removeable bar to place the toilet roll on which then goes through the Polaroid slot. Nuku even sell toilet roll with images on to make it look even more like a camera.

This comes with the relevant screws and wall plugs to hang it and I’m very impressed with myself because I managed to hang it all by myself problem free, and I am rubbish at DIY. It only took me 20 mins or so and I don’t own a drill either. This Polaroid toilet roll holder comes in two shades and cost £12.99.
Don’t you just love retro type gifts!

Easiyo yoghurt maker

Published September 22, 2016 by Bizzimummy

I was very recently asked to be a brand ambassador for EasiYo. As we all love yoghurt in our house I thought this would be the perfect opportunity and a good alternative for breakfast too.

EasiYo is all about making delicious yoghurt at home. Now I know, many will be thinking that if they want yoghurt then why not just go and buy ready made yoghurt from the supermarket? Well yes of course we already do that but making it ourselves seems so much better. Also EasiYo allows us to make lots of yoghurt at once and choose exactly how much we want to serve. It’s also really healthy and the packets are relatively cheap compared to buying a pack of yoghurts. 

To make the yoghurt at home you will need all of this! 

The big pink tub is our yoghurt maker and it’s actually a new limited edition one. They do come in other colours. The packets contain the yoghurt powder, they come in many varieties and the whole packet gives 1kg of yummy yoghurt.

The yoghurt maker is battery and electricity free. All it requires is water.

The powder goes into the large jar and water is added. The water needs to be between 15-20C. If you don’t own a themometer then this can be hard to judge. I mixed cold tap water with a little boiled water so that the cold edge is removed but the water is not quite warm. 

The jar is then placed inside the yoghurt maker and boiling water is added over the jar. Then place the lid back on and leave for 8 to 12 hours. I left mine overnight and it turned out pretty much perfect. The yoghurt should be thick and creamy once properly set. I did notice the slight bit of water on the top but if this occurs just mix it in. 

Once set it is best placed in the fridge to cool. Here is our first go at making the banana flavour EasiYo yoghurt.

I am very impressed that it turned out so well on our first go. It is really easy to make.

We had a whole kilo of this yummy stuff. We used little plastic pots for servings and enjoyed for both breakfast and supper. It tastes lovely, probably better than the shop stuff and lasts a few days in the fridge.

We can’t wait to make a try some more flavours.

The one downside I have come across with EasiYo is that the yoghurt packets don’t seem to be in the supermarkets or local stores yet. They can be purchased on the EasiYo website and other internet stores but it would be nice if you could buy them anywhere.

Personalised football gifts + Competition

Published August 22, 2016 by Bizzimummy

If your a keen football fan then you may want to take a look at the Personalised football gifts website. They have so many unique gifts for football fans and the majority of premier and championship teams are included. I even spotted Bolton Wanderers on the A-Z team list.

The gifts include mugs, t-shirts, wall plaques, mats, flasks, certificates and lots more. Personalisation is available with each item too.

Now I absolutely hate football. I detest watching it. Most probably due to being forced to watch by my dad and brother and a few footy obsessed ex partners. I detest turning on the television to find my favourite programmes taken off for a football game. 

However I happen to have a 12 year old boy and he does have some interest in football. He follows both Bolton wanderers and Manchester United and being the better team it was the latter which I chose as a gift for him. 

The one product that really stood out for me and that I knew Ryan would also like is this dressing room print

The photo was actually taken inside the Manchester United changing room. It comes with numerous options for personalisation such as changing the player names on shirts. You will see in this nexr photograph that Ryan’s surname is on one of the shirts too.

At the bottom of the picture are player autographs. Ryan’s name again appears next to these with a space for him to put his own signature, should he wish too. 

These come with a choice of frame too which are all different sizes. They start from £29.99 and make a perfect gift for football fans of any age. We just need to find the perfect space to hang it now.


Personalised football gifts are giving away one of their personalised mugs. The mug can be in any team available with your own personalisation. A selection of available mugs can be viewed here.

To be in with a chance of winning this prize, please click the link below to be forwarded to the entry page. 

Competition will close 19.09.2016. One winner chosen by rafflecopter will be contacted by email and must reply within 10 days. You need a Facebook and Twitter account to take part and must be a UK resident.

More competitions at ThePrizeFinder

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