Christmas Competitions 2016

Christmas Competitions 2016

Christmas Competitions

I haven’t done a round-up post for a while so I thought I would get back in the saddle since there are so many great competitions around at the moment especially for parents to make Christmas that little bit easier with children to buy for.

Here are some of my favourites. Please give me a nudge if you find any gems on your travels.

Win a Box of Chocolate and Love Chocolate – Closes 06.12.16

Win a Brunta Bear Kids Cushion – Closes 08.12.16

Win a Shopkins Illumi-mate from Life in a Breakdown – Closes 09.12.16

Win a Minions Nighlight with Life in a Breakdown – Closes 11.12.16

Win My First Baby Annabell Baby Brother Doll from The Family Beehive – Closes 12.12.16

Win a When Sarah Met Duck Book Bundle from Bump to Baby – Closes 13.12.16

Win a Tiny Tears Classic Doll from Mummy and the Chunks – Closes 13.12.16

Win a Sylvanian Families Berry Grove Cheerleader Rabbit – Closes 13.12.16

Win a Tomy Aquadoodle Super Colour Deluxe from Attachment Mummy– Closes 13.12.16

Win a Personalised Letter from Father Christmas and Activity Pack – Closes 14.12.16

Win a Star Wars Aquabeads Set – closes 14.12.16

Win a Tsum Tsum 9 Pack from Counting to Ten – Closes 18.12.16

Win a BRIO Firefighter Starter Set from Boo, Roo and Tigger Too – Closes 18.12.16

Win a Bamboo Slate Digital Notepad from Little Stuff – Closes 11.01.17

This is going to be an ongoing post until the end of the month so do keep checking back for updates.

If you have a competition that you would like me to add either tweet me at @babynotincluded or send me an email with the details to mail@babynotincluded.co.uk.

Good luck

Lisa

www.babynotincluded.co.uk 

 

Slow Cooker Hot Chocolate

Slow Cooker Hot Chocolate

Slow Cooker Hot Chocolate

This is the first time that I’ve ever made anything sweet in my slow cooker, and we have definitely used it far more this year with lots of lovely soups, stews and casseroles.

So here goes!

What you need:

  • 6 Cups of Milk
  • 1 1/2 Cups Double Cream
  • 1 Tin Sweetened Condensed Milk
  • 12oz Milk  Chocolate (chopped small of chocolate chips)
  • 1 Teaspoon Vanilla
  • Marshmallows

Pop all of the ingredients into your slow cooker and set on a low heat for approximately two hours.

Stir every ten minutes or so and once ready top with a few marshmallows and serve.

Slow Cooker Hot Chocolate

This hot chocolate is not for the faint hearted. It is really sweet and choc0latey!!

We made this whilst we put up the Christmas Tree and decorations and then watched the Polar Express in preparation for our Polar Express Train Ride next Sunday.

Lisa

www.babynotincluded.co.uk 

toucanBox Review

toucanBox Review

toucanBox Review

I’m totally loving the concept of subscription boxes. Choose the box of your choice, set up a payment plan and then BAM, every month a box appears through the post fully of lovely goodies. Boxes range from everything from make-up, feel good boxes and I’ve even seen some foodie type boxes.

Isabelle loves to make things, colour, cut, draw, stick so we’ve built up quite a good craft collection and often use Pinterest for inspiration.

We spotted toucanBox a few months ago which is perfect for Isabelle’s age range so when the opportunity to review the boxes came up we jumped at it.

toucanBox is aimed at children between 3 – 8 years. Each box comes with the complete kit and instructions to complete a crafty project.

There are three choices of subscription

  • Petite – contains one project and is shipped fortnightly
  • Grande – contains two themed projects and a reading book and are shipped monthly
  • Super Boxes – contains four themed projects and are shipped monthly

Payments are made when you first place the order and then monthly after that. There are no ties so you can cancel your subscription at any time and if you are away there’s even an option to pause your boxes and set them to come once you return.

toucanBox is addressed to your child which is lovely as all kids like to get post!

There’s a cool quiz that you can do on the site to find out your child’s personality. I did mine based on Isabelle and it came back with her being a Creator which I would totally agree with.

Isabelle is always making things. If she’s not drawing then she’s cutting things up or sticking things together.

So let’s get stuck in.

toucanBox Review

Isabelle was very excited to get the toucanBox through the post with her own name on it. I love the fact that it fits through the letter box so no waiting in or delivery cards through the door if you’re out.

Poor Isabelle is full of a cold in this video but doing some craft cheered her up.

toucanBox Review

I love that you get everything included to make the project including a glue stick and crayons. You could easily pop one of these in your bag and take on a train journey or away on holiday in case of rain.

Treasure Map & Parrot Partner

As explained in the video the box contained:

  • A tea bag
  • Paper
  • A paint brush
  • Stickers
  • Crayons
  • A Cardboard Parrot
  • Feathers
  • A Glue Stick
  • A wiggly eye
  • A Jumbo Lolly Stick

The instructions were very clear and even tell you the difficulty and messiness rating as well as some cool pirate facts. There was also a sheet with ideas on pirate themed games once the project is complete.

First of all we had to make a cup of tea – perfect.

toucanBox Review

Crumple the paper into a ball and then flatten. I should have taken a picture of Isabelle as she did this as she was quite surprised as I usually tell her off for wasting paper and screwing it up.

toucanBox Review

Using the cup of tea (no milk, no sugar), paint the piece of paper and set aside to dry.

toucanBox Review

toucanBox Review

Whilst the paper is drying, colour the parrot with the crayons.

toucanBox Review

Then add the feathers to make your parrot. Isabelle was starting to get tired again as she was a poorly girl but making this made the day bearable and fun for both of us.

Once the paper was dry, add the stickers to create your Treasure Map.

 

toucanBox Review

toucanBox Review

 

See what you like?

You can grab your own FREE toucanBox for your child or as a gift by visiting the site and adding the code BLOGGERSTREAT.

Any boxes ordered between 17th November – 15th December will include Christmas themed projects which will be nice to do on a cold day. They are also running a Christmas Advent Calendar with a surprise a day.

Happy Crafting.

Lisa x

www.babynotincluded.co.uk 

*We were sent the toucanBox free of charge for the purpose of this review. All opinions and images are our own.

 

Black Friday 2016

Black Friday 2016

 

#blackfriday

Happy Shopping.

Lisa

www.babynotincluded.co.uk 




Adult Christmas Advent Calendars

Adult Christmas Advent Calendars.

As I did a round-up of some of the great Kids Advent Calendars on offer this year I thought it was only fair that I did one for us grown-ups. I’ve got my eye on one in particular but it’s a bit pricey so it’s unlikely that I’ll get it, but never mind.

Adult Advent Calendars

A Yankee Candle Advent Calendar includes 23 tea lights and 1 votive candle with scents such as Christmas Cookie and Festive Cocktail.

Adult Advent Calendars

A Technic Mini Nail Varnish Advent Calendar which includes 24 different coloured mini nail varnishes every day.

Adult Advent Calendar

A Coffee Christmas Advent Calendar containing 24 different coffee’s for that special cup each day.

Adult Advent Calendars

For the tea drinkers out there this English Tea Shop Advent Calendar is great with a different tea for each of the 25 days.

Adult Advent Calendars

Christmas Beard Oil Advent Calendar for the bearded man in your life.

Adult Advent Calendars

A Sanctuary Spa Christmas Calendar which is packed full of pampering goodies such as bath soaks, detox masks and salt scrubs.

Adult Advent Calendars

Chase ’24 Days of Christmas Spirit’ Advent Calendar. Whilst this calendar is rather pricey I kinda like it. It contains 24 miniatures from Chase Distillery including Apple Vodka and Seville Orange Gin.

Adult Advent Calendars

The Body Shop Christmas Advent Calendar which includes a selection of make-up, beauty accessories and body treats.

Adult Advent Calendars

How fab is this Wine Christmas Advent Calendar. It comes with 24 mini bottles of wine in a selection of red, white and rose.

Adult Advent Calendars

To round up the list theres this Molton Brown Luxury Christmas Advent Calendar which includes loads of gorgeous goodies.

So that’s the list done. Sorry fella’s but I seem to have forgotten you guys but I got a little bit excited.

Let me know which one you went for!

Lisa x

www.babynotincluded.co.uk 

*Please note that this post may contain some affiliate links which I may receive a small payment from if you make a purchase.

Kids Advent calendars

Kids Advent Calendars

Everyone loves an advent calendar, and things have seriously moved on since the once a day chocolate calendar with your favourite character on the front.

Last year we pinched an idea from Pinterest and did a Book Advent Calendar for Isabelle which you can read our blog post about, but essentially you wrap up twenty-four books and number each one and every day they unwrap a new book which could be the bedtime story for that day. I noticed that some people did Christmas themed books each day, but I really struggled to find enough so just chose books that I knew Isabelle would love. This went down really well with Isabelle, and to cut costs even further you could buy books from Charity Shops/ebay/selling pages.

The year before we bought a Playmobil Calendar where each day you get a new piece and at the end you complete some kind of scene. We had the King and Queen Fairy Set which was really lovely.

Here is a round-up of some of the fantastic chocolate alternatives to Kids Advent Calendars.

Kids Advent Calendars

Toot-Toot Animals Advent Calendar. Suitable from 12 months. I love this calendar as it’s tricky getting something suitable for ‘little little’ ones. Each day you get a new piece to complete a playset and the box turns into a Toot-Toot drivers road.

Kids Advent Calendars

Mega Bloks Despicable Me Minions Advent Calendar – This Calendar is suitable from age 5+ and has 221 pieces which I think is great value for money.

Kids Advent Calendars

Melissa & Doug Countdown to Christmas Wooden Advent Calendar. Suitable from 3 years +. This contains 24 magnetic wooden tree decorations and a Christmas Star which can be placed on the relevant number each day.

Kids Advent Calendars

Play-Doh Advent Calendar. Suitable from 3 years +. We lurve Play-Doh! This calendar includes five pots of play-doh, tow of which are sparkly ones and lots of cutting accessories and shapes.

 

Kids Advent Calendars

Lego Star Wars Advent Calendar. Suitable from age 6+ and comes with 24 LEGO Star Wars themed gifts including an exclusive holiday themed mini figure. There are also lots of other scenes from Playmobil that you can get, but I was purposely trying not to make this an ‘all about the girls’ round-up.

Kids Advent Calendars

Trolls Trollific Advent Calendar – I showed this one to Isabelle who had the widest eyes ever. Who doesn’t want a calendar packed full of lip glosses, hair clips and nail stickers.

Kids Advent Calendars

Thomas and Friends Mini’s Advent Calendar with 24 Thomas Mini’s and then the box turns into a track. Cute.

Kids Advent Calendars

Schleich Advent Calendar – A magical Fairy play experience.

Kids Advent Calendars

Barbie Advent Calendar. Suitable from 3 years +. Each door has a fashion accessory for Barbie (Doll not included) including shoes, handbags and headpieces.

Kids Advent Calendars

Hot Wheels Advent Calendar. Suitable from 3 years +. This calendar includes 8 Hot Wheels vehicles and 16 festive accessories.

Kids Advent Calendars

A Personalised Colour in Advent Calendar Poster is a lovely idea that all the family can get involved in.

Kids Advent Calendars

How lovely is this Meri Meri Nutcracker Charm Bracelet Advent Calendar. Each door contains a charm to add to the bracelet each day.

 

Kids Advent Calendar

Match Attax Advent Calendar contains 120 cards (24 packs) including a Gold Limited Edition Player. My son would have loved this when he was younger. I’m sure that we’ve got all his collectable cards and sticker books still somewhere.

Kids Advent Calendars

A Smiggle Advent Calendar. This is packed full of Smiggle goodies, and each calendar has an envelope attached that could contain a £250 voucher for a Smiggle Shopping Spree. Isabelle’s eyes were out on stalks as this is her absolute favourite shop at the moment.

Kids Advent Calendars

This Benross Christmas Wooden Advent Calendar has 25 drawers that you can fill with your own treats to suit your children and even comes with lights. The advantage of this is that you can re-use it year after year.

I’d love to know what Advent Calendar ideas you have for your children. Pop a comment below or head on over to our Facebook Page.

Lisa

www.babynotincluded.co.uk 

*Please note that this post contains affiliate links which means that I may receive a small payment if you make a purchase.

 

 

Boohoo Kids – A Review

Boohoo Kids – A Review

I know you’ve heard of www.boohoo.com – if you haven’t’ where the heck have you been?

Isabelle is 6 now going on 16 and has an annoying interest and input into what she will and won’t wear.

So on we popped onto the Boo Hoo website to have a look at their new kids range.

I thought I would do something a bit different and let Isabelle loose to choose what she liked and added it to a wish list and then pick an outfit at the end (within reason).

This is what Isabelle Chose:

(more…)

Theatre Royal – Big The Musical

Theatre Royal – Big The Musical 

Exciting news!

My sidekick (Isabelle) and I have been selected to be resident bloggers for the Theatre Royal Plymouth which is really exciting.

The programme is much much more than attending and reviewing the many shows that they host there. We’ll be going behind the scenes, finding out about how the shows are put together, meeting the cast, checking out the cool costumes and props and getting knee deep in the excitement surrounding the whole theatre experience.

We had our very first meet-up on Tuesday which was really lovely, and there was a real mix of personalities and reasons for wanting to get involved. Isabelle wasn’t able to attend on this occasion with it being a school night but she’s eager to get stuck in.

I’m not one for getting star-struck but it is nice spotting people that you recognise from the telly, but for Isabelle and I it’s the Witch from The Room on the Broom that drew us in the first place.

Having all of Julia Donaldson’s children’s books we’re huge fans, and have already seen ‘What the Ladybird Heard’ in theatre and loved it. If we were to meet ‘The Witch’ that would be totally awesome.

We were fortunate to be able to go along and watch Big The Musical starring Jay McGuiness, Diana Vickers and Gary Wilmot based on the film with Tom Hanks (definitely worth a watch if you haven’t already).

We were given a backstage tour by Gary Wilmot, who was absolutely lovely and his love of performance and the credit he gave to the whole production team was lovely to see.

There were people everywhere, checking, cleaning and checking to make sure that everything was set for the night. I had thought that it would be totally manic with loads of stressy people dashing about, but it was very calm (even with just an hour to go).

We got to go on stage and have a look at Josh and Billy’s stage houses, as well as the toy shop. They have this enormous screen which weighs about 4 tons which provides the backdrops for the scenes and is rotated around from scene to scene. It’s not until you watch the show that you see how amazing this is.

So onto BIG The Musical.

Big The Musical

The story is based in the 80’s about a boy who is just about to turn thirteen wanting to be ‘Big’. His wish is granted by the Zoltar machine at the Carnival when he wakes up trapped inside the body of a man. The only person who knows who he really is, is his best friend He finds himself alone and grown-up in New York to fend for himself until he befriends the local toy shop owner who likes his  kid-like knowledge of cool toys. He then finds himself with a job and an apartment and all is great and exciting, even meeting a ‘grown-up woman’ who seems to have taken a liking to him. Life in the boardroom is fun but he’s ruffling feathers amongst the ‘real’ grown-ups and their lack of imagination and fun needed to make toys. Josh opens up the eyes of the ‘grown-ups’ and makes them remember what fun they had as kids before realising that being a kid himself wasn’t so bad and his quest to find a Zoltar machine to return to life as it once was.

I loved it from beginning to end! There was lots of humour and it was exciting throughout.

Big The Musical

My favourite part was when the stage was turned into a giant piano and both Josh (Jay McGuiness) and George Macmillan (Gary Wilmot) danced on the keys.

Overall it was a great show and I actually had cheek ache from grinning.

I cannot wait to find out whats in store for us next.

Big The Musical is running at the Theatre Royal, Plymouth until the 12th November before it heads to the to Dublin and then onto the West End and is definitely worth a watch if you get the chance.

Lisa

www.babynotincluded.co.uk 

Isabelle’s Christmas Wish List

Isabelle’s Christmas Wish List

If you are the lucky owner of a child that can speak then you’ll know this song well!

I want that!
Oh I want that!
Mummy I want that!
Mummy did you see!
I want that!
Mum!
Mum!
Mummy!
Can you add that to my Christmas List!

This is the song that is sung, or should I say shouted every single time the adverts come on.

Christmas adverts are pure torture for us parents.

It’s hard to know what she is really interested in since she sings this song every single time.

So here’s the Top 10 things that Isabelle wants (based on the singing getting louder the more she wants it)

Christmas Wish List

  1. Baby Annabell Bedroom Playset

Christmas Wish List

2. Hatchimal – These adverts have been teasing her for weeks before they were revealed. She wants one for herself and one for me so that we can look after them together!

Christmas Wish List

3. FurReal Friends Torch my Blazing Dragon.

Christmas Wish List

4. Colours of the Sea Ariel Doll 

Christmas Wish List

5. VTech DigiGo – So she can text me at work of course.

Christmas Wish List

6. Chocolate Lolly Maker 

Christmas Wish List

7. Kidizoom Selfie Cam – I think I’d miss all the funny selfies that Isabelle takes on my phone.

Christmas Wish List

8. Pom Pom Wow Set – Totally weird!

Christmas Wish List

9. Num Noms Lip Gloss Truck 

 

Christmas Wish List

10. Smiggle Fluffy Backpack – She loves everything Smiggle!

So here are her Top 10 which I hope that Father Christmas can fit a few of these in his sack when he does the rounds.

What’s on your Childrens’s Christmas List?

Lisa

www.babynotincluded.co.uk 

 

*This post contains some affiliate links.

Events: Doodlebugs Bump, Baby & Children’s Market

Doodlebugs Bump, Baby & Children’s Market

Saturday 5th November

2pm – 4pm

Victory Hall, Main Road, Exminster

Doodlebugs Bump, Baby & Children's Market

Pop along for some great baby and Children’s bargains with a great selection of pre-loved baby clothing, toys, accessories and books as well as local businesses like ourselves.

We’ll be taking along a lovely selection of Lamaze Toys, Funky Baby Leggings from Baby Brain Apparel, Sock-ons, Dribble-ons and more……….

The event is  supporting our local children’s charity Exminster Pre-School who will be fundraising by face painting (and no doubt tatooing!) your little ones.

A fantastic local cafe Coffee On The Corner will be open as well selling their amazing array of refreshments and cakes to take a break from browsing and buying!

Entry is FREE!

For further updates and details, visit the Doodlebugs Facebook page.

Pop along and say hello x

Lisa

www.babynotincluded.co.uk