Orchard Toys - Farmyard Puzzle - Review & Competition

As a Mummy and a blogger there are many brands that I absolutely adore and actively support on social media and Orchard Toys are one of them. We have been working along side them for a while now and are lucky enough to be one of their official testers. 

Orchard Toys specialise in educational toys, puzzles and books which aren't just great aids for learning but are super fun too. They release new products often and we recently received one of their newest puzzles to review.

Farmyard Heads & Tails is a puzzle which is recommend from 18 months. It is a great starter puzzle to introduce to your toddler when you feel they are ready. It's a fun matching game which becomes more and more entertaining as your little one develop their confidence and ability. 

Farmyard Heads & Tails is an easy to understand and quick to learn activity and one that Noah has thoroughly enjoyed. He still needs a lot of help and encouragement when it comes to making a match but puzzles aren't his strong suit just yet. 

There are 12 character cards in total (24 pieces) which is great because it keeps Noah interested which is usually not an easy task considering his short attention span! There are plenty of animals, machinery and even a farmer! Noah's favourite card to find is the tractor and once he spots it he squeals in delight and shouts "Trak tra!" (Which is his new word - he's tractor mad!)

At £7.50 it's a steal because Orchard Toys are products that last. Not only are they great quality and well made but they also last years because each activity grows with your child. I know that Noah will be having fun with this puzzle for years. 

Orchard Toys have been kind enough to offer you guys the chance to win one for yourself. All you need to do to enter is use the Rafflecopter form below, good luck! 

1. 1 prize.
2. Prize supplied directly from the PR.
3. Competition ends 27/9/15
4. Incomplete entries with be disqualified.
5. UK entries only.


Making time for Romance

Nick and I have been together for 7 years now. It feels a lifetime ago when we were socialising via social media and arranging to meet formally for the first time. We had mutual friends in common and knew about one another but had never spoken face to face.

I still remember that first night we met up. We were both nervous so had a drink together and spoke until the early hours. We just hit it off and were inseparable from the get go. As soppy and cliché as it sounds I knew he was the one there and then. I was right of course, fast forward 7 years and we have a child, are engaged and a have a home together.  

One of our favourite things to do in the evening is reminisce about those early days. The days when butterflies fill your tummy and your heart beats ten to the dozen when you are around them. We like to talk about the dates that we went on together, the romantic gesture's we've bestowed on one another, those special moments together. We absolutely love being parents and our son is our entire world but we do miss having that one on one time and those spontaneous and romantic date nights. Romance is so important not only for our current relationship and future relationship but for our family too. I want our son to see that his parents don't just love him but they love another too. 

It's so easy to forget about couple time when you are parents but with August being Romance Awareness month we've really been trying to make that time for one another. We have been setting aside time for one another for at least a couple of hours a week. Whether it be a romantic walk with another or even sitting down and watching a film together once the little one is in bed. It's so important to make that time for one another, to remember that you aren't just Mummy and Daddy but you are still a couple too. 

Making time for romance isn't just vital for your relationship to bloom but it's also good practice for the future. It's needed for the mind, body and soul, or at least I think so. 

Do you make time for romance? 

- Collaborative post. 


An Expanding Home for an Expanding Family

Last year was a big year for us as a family and if you read the blog you will already know why. We worked very hard and were fortunate enough to climb out of the renting rut and jump straight onto the property ladder. After renting for 6 years we had finally bought our first home.  

We viewed a few dozen properties before we realised we had found the one that was right for us. Unfortunately the house that we fell in love with wasn't a new build or a house that was in good condition it was one that needed a lot of work and this had it's pro's and con's. 

The downside was that we couldn't just move in straight away and had to move in with relatives. Then we had months and months of renovating ahead of us. Once you ticked one job off the list another three had appeared and at times it felt like we weren't getting anywhere fast. The renovation of course was tiring, stressful and very expensive too. 

The positive side of having to start from scratch is that our home is exactly how we envisioned and wanted it to be. Every single aspect has been chosen by us. From the colour of the carpet in each room through to the colour of the grout on our bathroom tiles. Everything has been hand picked and this makes our home very personal to us. 

12 long and gruelling months later and the renovation has been completed. Once we had moved in that sense of accomplishment was overwhelming and it felt like a weight had been lifted. It still doesn't feel real that we have our very own home but we do.

That being said we are now drawing up plans for renovation phase two. Our home is going to turn in to a building site once again because we are building into the attic! The thought of a hole in our roof is a very frightening prospect but every expanding family needs a home that can expand too. 

Have you renovated an attic? Do you have any tips for us?


Project 365 - Week 34 - 34/52

16th August - 22nd August / Week 34

It's been a week of milestones for Noah this week! If you continue to read you will find out why! Sunday night Noah starting sleeping full time with his own duvet and pillow. He's taken to it really well considering how much he loves his sleeping bags.

With Monday came another milestone as Noah finally walked on sand. Don't get me wrong, it's not his first time on sand but he usually physically recoils from it, even with shoes on! I managed to persuade him to come and play on the sand and that it was nothing to worry about. He finally got it and he must of played on this park a good half hour. He was so proud of himself as I was too! 

Tuesday, playgroup day! I will be sad when this afternoon session ends in a couple of weeks as it's been ideal for us. I cannot recommend playgroups enough for building up your child's confidence and social skills. Noah used to suffer with extremely bad stranger anxiety and taking him to group just once a week has helped him overcome it.

Wednesday we had beautiful weather and Noah and I made the most of it by playing outside in the front garden. He insisted on bringing half a dozen toys outside and we rescued a bee from his water table. Love days like this.

Thursday Noah and I baked a cake together, for the first time. I've not attempted to do this with Noah before because he's not in to anything messy and usually doesn't have the attention span. He's one of those kids that just wants to be dashing around, keeping busy. Lately I have noticed a change in him and he is starting to enjoy arts, crafts and baking and this makes me very happy indeed!

Friday was another day of firsts. We started the afternoon with his first trip to the dentist which went very well. He sat on my lap, opened his mouth and let the dentist take a look at his teeth without any fuss whatsoever. The dental nurse then handed him some Thomas stickers which just made his day! He started shouting "choo chooooo!" and had a smile from ear to ear. We then took him to KFC for the first time as a treat. He then had his hair shaved for the first time....

Yes, here is Noah showing off his newly shaven head. He looks so different and I'm not sure I like it but it had to be done as it was so unruly and manageable. I am hoping that by cutting it it will encourage his hair to either grow back into proper curls or grow back straight. Only time will tell! 

What have you been up to this week?