Christmas hits…

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 Melissa & Doug Classic Card Game Set

This set has been Daisy’s favourite Christmas present! She has played it constantly over the last week and has taken it everywhere with her. The cards are a good size and very sturdy which makes them easy for little hands to hold. They really are fabulous and well worth the money. Daisy and I totally recommend them.

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Our Garden Birds

Daisy has always loved books about nature and birds and for years has been trying desperately to pinch her granddad’s garden birds books. Father Christmas brought her this lovely book and this has been brought out on our little walks so she can look for and tell us about the birds she spots. It is beautifully illustrated and Matt Sewell speaks of each bird lovingly and gives them all a personality.

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KAPLA 6801 280 Box (with guide book)

I cannot speak highly enough of these building blocks, they are fantastic! I honestly don’t know who has enjoyed them most in our house. We got the one above which comes with a book that has lots of ideas as to what you can build (which is what my husband has been following) but Daisy and Bobby have enjoyed just making up their own designs. Bobby has mainly made cages for his animals (always Schleich ones).  I am very confident that these are a good investment which will be played with for years to come.

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Maxi Micro Scooter

Finally if you are thinking about a scooter and can’t decide which to buy I highly recommend the Micro Scooter. OK it’s not the cheapest, but it is seriously good and well worth the money. Daisy and Bobby got the Maxi Scooter for Christmas but previous to this have both had the Mini Scooter. Bob at the moment still prefers this and he has just turned 6, I think it’s because he can handle it better, but Daisy was loving the new one. I hope you have all had a fabulous Christmas and New Year and I’d love to hear what some of your biggest Christmas present hits were.

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Shelley x

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Sunday loving…

Sunday loving1. Next Santa shirt £11-£12

2. Boden Velvet Coat £96.75

3Bird Bingo

4. Marks and Spencer’s Penguin Snowsuit £26

5. Marks and Spencer’s Yoda Bubble Bath £2.25

6. Joules Mouse Mittens £9.95

I haven’t felt great today so have been doing a bit of internet surfing for stocking fillers, actually just things I love!  How cute is the Santa shirt? This is such a good alternative to a Christmas jumper. I also loved this one. I have only just noticed this coat from Boden and I don’t know how as it is so fab and velvet is everywhere this season. Bobby and Daisy have the above game and also have Bug Bingo and Dog Bingo and they are all brilliant and such a good way for them to learn about birds and animals. The Yoda bubble bath is a total bargain and a good idea for presents throughout the year whilst it’s so cheap! I was also loving this hat, these gloves , this hat, this baby blanket, this mini activity book for days out , this bottle opener for the hubby and this jumper (in navy or grey) and finally these trinket dishes to hold my jewellery at the side of my bed.

Shelley x

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Games my kids love

Games my kids love…

 

Tobar Mancala

 The Beetle Game – Retro Board Game

As a family we love to play games, they are so easy to take out and about with us and I always seem to have about three in my handbag. Especially card games. I love the benefits of playing games together. It makes us interact with each other, is cheap and fun and the kids have to learn rules such as waiting their turn, have to think about their next move, about what their opponent will do and also how to handle their emotions if they lose! I thought I would share some of our favourite games.

Mancala is such a good game for two people. There are 48 glass balls and you have to try and get as many as you can in your ‘mancala’ trough to win. This is very good as it gets the kids thinking strategically. Even Bobby at 5 could master it! It’s a game for all ages which Daisy’s grandma discovered last weekend when she got addicted.

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The Beetle game is good as each beetle part is represented by the number on the dice. To win you have to be the fastest to build your beetle. I bought it as Bobby was struggling with his numbers and I wanted him to get use to identifying them. This helped. A good little stocking filler.

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Dobble Card Game

UNO Cards

These are two of the games that are always in my handbag. I have written about Dobble before here, but as it is one of our favourites I thought it was definitely worth mentioning again as it would make a fabulous stocking filler.  Uno was one of my favourite childhood games. Me and my friend Amy became very good at it and very competitive. Daisy is now the best player in our house. We went out for tea the other evening and were playing this and ended up with two of Daisy’s school friends and their mum sat with us playing as well. The mum went straight out and bought it as she thought it was fab. So if you don’t have it you really need to go and buy it.

Shelley x

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Travelling with children…

travelling

1. Secret Garden: An Inky Treasure Hunt and Colouring Book

2STABILO Cappi Fibre Tip Colouring Pens with Triangular Grip Zone – Assorted Colours (Pack of 12)

3. Adventures in Famous Places: Packed Full of Activities and Over 250 Stickers (Lonely Planet Kids)

4. 50 Things to Do on a Car Journey (Usborne Activity Cards)

5. Happy Jackson Lunchbox £6

6. OMY Design and Play Cosmos Colouring/Pocket Game

We have travelled quite a bit with the children, whether that be in the car or on a plane and over the years I have learnt a few things that work.

Snacks: You really do need some, whether these be healthy or not they do make for a happier journey. We have the snack box above in yellow, and I usually take things like sandwiches, raisins, Soreen and grapes. This should keep them quiet for a short time.

Books: I usually pack a couple of their favourites so we can have a read on the journey. Bobby always seems to take A Squash and A Squeeze, it’s a definite favourite with them both and Daisy loves The Magic Finger at the moment after reading it at ‘Book Club’ with the lovely Sarah from Bay Tree Books.

Baby wipes: Dirty fingers, messy faces, spillages, the list goes on…

Plastic bags: For rubbish, seems an obvious one but don’t forget to pack a few.

Colouring books: Daisy has the one above and it’s her new favourite thing, the pens are brilliant as they can be sealed together so you don’t lose any. She also got Field Guide: Creatures Great and Small (Field Guides) for her birthday, it’s so pretty and believe me you will enjoy colouring these in just as much as the kids.  The OMY pocket games and colouring boxes as seen above are great as they are so small. They come in different designs but Bob likes the Space one.

Activity Books: We have used quite a few of the Lonely Planet ones above over the years. They are great and really do keep them entertained. Daisy also loves these sticker books Sticker Dolly Dressing Fashion Designer Wedding Collection. Hours of fun.

CardsChildren’s Card Games – Jungle Snap, Pairs on Wheels & Happy Families 3 Pack. Small and they don’t take up much space but they really do entertain children of all ages.

They each always have a back pack and we fill this with just their items so everything is together. I also take on a bag which is dedicated just to the children so I know where everything is instead of trying to remember which bag I put it in.

I know I have probably missed things but these are my essentials.

Shelley x

Kids games…

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Dobble Card Game

We have and love this game. It’s so good, I love playing it with the kids and my 5 year old is an expert at it!  Players compete with each other to find the matching symbol between one card and another. Every card is unique and has only one symbol in common with any other in the deck.

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Can you spot the match above?

As the game is based on reactions and vision, rather than knowledge or strategy, there is no advantage for adults over children, making it the perfect family game. Such a simple concept and is one of our favourite games – highly recommended.

Shelley x