11/19/2017

My Sunday Photo - 47/52



OneDad3Girls

11/18/2017

Project 365 - Week 46/52


12th November 2017


13th November 2017


14th November 2017


15th November 2017


16th November 2017


17th November 2017


18th November 2017

This week has been crazy, we've been so busy! It was Noah's 4th birthday on Sunday but we'd had his birthday the day before, on the Saturday. This meant that on Sunday we were able to relax and let him open his presents without rushing about. We had family visit who also brought him presents, a second birthday cake and then we visited family and went out for a family meal. It was perfect, such an amazing day and weekend.

Monday was back to nursery and Noah's been doing quite well, not as many tears when it comes to drop off. He's so popular at nursery, I'm sure every child knows his name. We also started our #PowerRangers12DaysXmas project which you can read more about on my facebook and twitter page, Noah's a very lucky boy! Ava has been coming on leaps and bounds this week too, it's amazing what she seems to pick up and so quickly too. On Friday it was Children in Need so I dressed both kids up, any excuse to really! Nursery had a themed day and little party set up for them. We donated money, they got dressed up, decorated biscuits, had their face painted etc. Noah kept thinking he was called Fudgey Bear, which was quite funny! 

Today we had two birthday parties to go to and they were both great! Soft play fun in the morning for a 3rd birthday and then in the afternoon we went to Noah's friends 4th birthday party. Highlight of the day has got to be holding a three stone python! Both kids aren't feeling 100% at the moment so I think they did so good to say they were out all day long. They were both ready for bed tonight that's for sure, they were all partied out! 

What have you been up to this week?


11/16/2017

Introducing Purple Mill - The Candle & Home Fragrance Store - Competition


If you know me at all, you will know that I love candles just as much as the next person. Almost every night I'll be burning a new scent. There's something so relaxing about unwinding in the evening whilst a candle flickers in the distance. With my love of candles I'm always coming across new brands and new stores, one of which is Purple Mill.

Purple Mill specialise in the supply of candles, home fragrances, accessories and gifts for every occasion.
They stock a wide range of the finest candle and home fragrance brands including Ashleigh and Burwood, Shearers, Vineyard, Roots, Heart and Home, Wenzel & Gala candles and are constantly adding new suppliers to their already impressive range. Their selection of candles include; church and pillar candles, taper and dinner candles, scented candles, ball candles, votive and tealights.

They also have an accessories range include wedding accessories, table decor, favour bags, gift bags and much more. They are also happy to discuss any large orders for favours, weddings, corporate events or any individual enquiry for an item that you cannot see on the website.


With Christmas being just around the corner I'm going to be hosting various competitions leading up to the big day. To start us off, I've teamed up with Purple Mill to give away this lovely candle and diffuser set worth £37.00. The bundle includes a Shearer Candle in gift box and the matching Shearer Candle Diffuser both in the Orange Pomander scent. The scent is described as tantalising orange, studded with fragrant cloves, it's the spicy scent of winter and is perfect for Christmas! To enter simply use the Gleam form below. Good luck and don't forget to enter my other blog competitions!

Orange Pomander Shearer Candle & Diffuser worth £37.00


Terms & Conditions.                                                                                      
1. There will be 1 winner who will win the prize mentioned above. 
2. Prize sent directly by the PR. 
3. Competition ends 10/12/17
4. Incomplete entries with be disqualified.
5. UK entries only.

11/15/2017

Our Just For Tots Break At Butlin's Skegness - Review


We love to go on holiday and have little breaks away, just like most families do. Don't get me wrong, we love our home and our creature comforts but I think getting out and about, visiting new places is very important for families. Our holidays and breaks away have enabled us to have more quality time together as a family and helped us create very special memories.

Last month, we were invited to review a Just For Tots break at Butlin's in Skegness. We had never been before, so we didn't really know what to expect. I'll be honest and admit that I'd read and heard so many mixed opinions when it comes to Butlin's, but I went with an open mind and couldn't wait to see what it was like.


Location
The Butlin's resorts are located in three different locations; Bognor Regis, Minehead and Skegness. We opted to go to the Skegness resort as it's the nearest to us, just a three hour drive and as all parents know, that's long enough with two little one's in the car. We got there without a hitch using our sat nav and it was quite a nice drive too. Skegness is known as a seaside town and is actually home to the very first Butlin's resort. 


Accommodation
We stayed in the Fairground Apartments for the duration of our 4 day break. As the name suggests these apartments are in walking distance from the fairground which was ideal for us as Noah loved the fairground! 

On entering we were really pleased by the space and decor of the apartment, it was perfect! Everything was clean, tidy and fit for purpose. 
The large open living space have a lovely homely feel, with it's L shaped sofa, scatter cushions and flat screen TV. Noah loved the fairground theme, the mirror in the living room was a big hit. We all spent a lot of time laughing at giggling at our stretched and shrunk reflections! Leading on from the living space we had a fantastic dining kitchen. This consisted of a dining table and chairs, fridge, oven and hob, microwave, kettle and toaster. All cutlery was provided, as are bowls, plates, glasses, mugs and pans. We were also happy to find chocolates, crisps, little bottles of wine, fresh orange and a bottle of coke ready and waiting for us on arrival! The apartment had two decent sized and comfortable bedrooms. We were also given a cot bed to use however Ava slept in a bed with me, and Nick slept in the other room with Noah. I felt more comfortable this way as Noah is still quite young to be in his own room on holiday. Last but not least the bathroom was quite small and compact, which is fine as it means you get more space in the bedrooms. It is worth noting that there is only a shower and no bath, which can make washing small children and babies a little tricky. Overall we were very happy with the accommodation!


Dining

As part of our trip we had premium dining package which gave us the choice to eat at two different restaurants free of charge. This was great because we didn't have to worry about breakfasts or dinner, we just had to buy in a few bits for our lunches. The food on this package is a buffet, help your self affair which I think is ideal for families because you are able to get up and serve yourself and don't have to wait for it to be cooked and served. Noah really enjoyed being able to come up with me every morning and evening to choose what he'd like to eat. There's so much choice at meal times that even the fussiest of eaters would be able to find something that they like.

We never had to que or wait in line for food, as the restaurants are very big with plenty of room. I also feel like i have to mention how great the cleaning staff are. They are constantly sweeping the floors and clearing the tables. You can imagine how messy it can get with so many young children eating, it must be hard to keep the area clean but they do manage it. The staff are so polite and welcoming and always have a chat with you and talk to the children.


Our favourite place to eat was at The Deck restaurant. It was always clean, well staffed, and had a great atmosphere. The show cooking chef here was great, his grilled meats, burgers and BLT's were sublime! The Mexican themed night also has to be mentioned. We had fajitas, burrito's, nacho's, the works! It was so good, we all really enjoyed it! We also really loved the desserts, maybe a little too much as we had second helpings some nights! There was so much choice, from hot puddings and custards, to cheesecakes and cream, to fruit salad and ice cream! We were very surprised and impressed with our dining experience! I'm getting hungry just writing about it!



Activities
One thing I can say without hesitation, you will never ever be stuck for something to do while you are at Butlin's! Just one glance at your "whats on and when" guide and you will see just how much is going on around you and it's very easy to plan your day. There's play doh sessions, discos, messy play, sing along's, puppet shows, meet and greets, football coaching, swimming sessions and so much more. There is something for everyone at any time. The handy guide lets you know what activities are on, the time they are on, where they are taking place and what ages they are appropriate for. It is basically your activity bible and we carried ours around with us at all times so we knew where we were going next.

Bot kids had so much fun at everything we managed to do. We got involved with some creative sessions and felt they were really well organised. Although very busy, the staff do a great job of keeping the sessions organised and structured. 

We visited the swimming pool one afternoon and what a fantastic facility it is. You can see a lot of money has been put into creating a thrilling and safe swimming experience for all ages. The layout is great, the slides are amazing and the place is big enough so that you don't feel claustrophobic or that you are swimming on top of people. The pool is a definite highlight of the activities you can partake in during your stay and the fact you can stay in the pool as long as you like and go as much you want just make it all the more enjoyable.
 
We spent a lot of time in the fairground which caters for children of all ages. There are smaller rides for the little ones such as the teacups and the ladybird ride. Then there's the bigger rides for older kids including Dodgems and the Go-Karts. All rides are free to use (except the Go-Karts and high jumpers) and you can go on as many times as you like. There's also various fairground games to play including hook a duck and target throwing., although these aren't free as there are prizes to be won. There's so much fun to be had here and I think we spent most our time at the fairground. 


Entertainment 

Evening entertainment usually starts between 6pm and 7pm between Reds, The Skyline Pavilion and Centre Stage. The shows are really well put together and the entertainment team do a great job of keeping the children happy and engaged. You are spoilt for choice over which show to go to but you can guarantee that you and your children will enjoy it. The highlight of the entertainment for us was definitely Justin Fletcher. He put on an amazing show and I think us adults actually enjoyed it more than the children.

It's great to see Butlin's going that extra mile by getting well known TV personalities to perform at the resort. I also have to mention the red coats who are so popular with the children. They make a special effort to talk to all the children, show them dance moves and sing along with them. I don't know how they keep there energy up!


Not only are there half a dozen shows to enjoy but there's also numerous arcades which you can enjoy. There's countless arcade machines, most of which give out tickets which you can save up during your stay and exchange for prizes. We all really enjoyed ourselves at the arcades and we managed to win ourselves two Teletubbies from the claw grabber machines on the very last night! There's also a cinema showing the latest releases and a bowling alley too, these of course you have to pay for.


Tips and Suggestions
If you have a young baby (like we do) and want to save money I would recommend taking your own cot bed and high chair as these aren't provided in the room. You can however rent them out for the duration of your stay, at a cost. A baby bath would be a good idea too as I did have to bathe Ava in the kitchen sink with our apartment not having a bath.

If possible I'd recommend asking for a first or second floor apartment too. Ours was on the ground floor which was good in a way because of our pram but on a whole it was a negative. We heard lots of banging and shuffling, 24/7. This of course isn't Butlin's fault, just the quite inconsiderate and noisy neighbours above us. It wasn't my two children waking me up at the crack of dawn, it was the kids above us who sounded like they were practising long jump!

Overall thoughts
Would we go back? YES! We'd go back next week! We had an absolute blast and I cannot say one bad word about our experience. If we'd have been paying customers I'd be completely satisfied and I wouldn't hesitate in recommending Butlins Skegness to a friend.


- We were invited to review a Just For Tots break however all opinions are my own. 

11/13/2017

Ogosport Bolli Sensory Teether Ball - Competition

After ten years as an award-winning active and creative play toy company, OgoSport have debuted their first ever 0 months+ toy, the Bolli teether sensory ball. It's made from 100% nontoxic silicone material and is BPA and phthalate free. It’s also dishwasher and freezer safe.


Bolli is perfect for sensory development, shape exploration, fine motor skills, grasping and hand-eye coordination. It’s soft and pliable material can be squished, stretched and manipulated in so many different ways. I'ts great for stretching, twisting and grasping too.

The open ball design makes it easy for babies to chew while teething and also makes it easy to grab a hold of. It's ideal for infants for for teething but it's also great for older kids for imaginative play or for when they are learning to catch.

We were recently sent a couple to try out and both Noah and Ava have been having so much fun with them. Ava is currently teething so she loves to chew on them but she also likes it when I put a toy inside it and she will try her best to pull it out. Noah on the other hand has been playing bowling with them and has been throwing them against the wall to try to catch them. There's so many ways you can play and learn with Bolli.

Prices start at £6.99 and they can be purchased online. How would you like to win a 
Ogosport Bolli Sensory Development Teether Ball for your little one? To enter simply use the Gleam form below. Good luck and don't forget to enter my other blog competitions

Ogosport Bolli Sensory Teether Ball Toy
Terms & Conditions         
1. There will be 1 winner who will the prize mentioned above.
2. Prize sent directly by the PR. 
3. Competition ends 03/12/17.
4. Incomplete entries with be disqualified.
5. UK entries only. 

11/11/2017

Project 365 - Week 45/52



5th November 2017


6th November 2017


7th November 2017


8th November 2017


9th November 2017


10th November 2017


11th November 2017

I still can't get my head around how fast this year has been, yet another week has flown on by. Noah was still off nursery on Monday so I decided to take them both to playgroup in the morning. It's not often that I can take Noah these days with him being at nursery so it was a great opportunity to go. He's always loved playgroup and I think it's mainly because he knows that I stay with him! He doesn't have to go through the tears about me leaving him like he does with nursery. We had a great time playing together, just the three of us. We then went to the shops for a few treats, back home for lunch and then went to a different playgroup in the afternoon. It was fab! Noah loved painting, getting messy in the sand and playing with all the different toys. Ava really liked the baby area as there was so much for her see and do. The rest of the week went by in a blur of routine and nursery really. That was until today, Noah's 4th birthday party! I booked a party for him at a local soft play centre and I honestly think that he had the time of his life! Running around with all his friends then filling up on party food and ice cream. What's not to love! I'm so excited for tomorrow, I can't believe he's turning 4!

What have you been up to this week?

11/09/2017

Fisher-Price Zoom ‘N Crawl Monster - Review



Ava has been very lucky lately and has been following in Noah's footsteps by receiving some pretty cool toys to play with, and review. This week she received the Zoom ‘n Crawl Monster which is a new toy from Fisher-Price. I was so excited to show it to her when it arrived! She's just turned 8 months old and is really interested in toys at the moment, especially one's which move and play songs.


Once it arrived, Noah and Ava literally couldn't wait for me to get it out of the box. They both insisted that I open it straight away. Noah was shouting "open it please Mummy" and Ava was yelling at it! They were both very excited to see what it'd do.

The Fisher-Price Zoom ‘N Crawl Monster is a brightly coloured, fun, interactive little toy. It has two different modes of play with the simple switch of a button. It also has 15 fun songs, phrases and sounds which keeps your little one engaged and entertained. 
It's a toy which grows with your child and one which helps develop your babies senses with it's bright colours, varied textures and different sounds. It's also great for practising their hand-eye coordination.



We first tried out the sit and play setting. We turned it on and filled the monsters tummy with the five colourful plastic balls which are included. We then touched the roller ball on the front of the monster and he began to spin the balls around in his mouth, he then spat them all out one by one. Ava was quite taken with the toy by this point. She was sat there trying to catch the balls as they fell and quickly figured out how to put them back inside. This mode is great for Ava as she can sit confidently whilst playing with it.


Next we switched the button to the second mode of play, the crawl and play setting. We popped the balls back inside the monster but this time it started moving around the floor, spinning in circles, all while dropping the balls. By this point, Ava was totally mesmerised and was almost bursting with excitement! It was zooming all around the carpet and when it was quite a distance away from her she started shouting at it like she was telling it to come back! She's so close to crawling at the moment and watching the monster move around the carpet encouraged her to start rocking back and forth. She so wanted to crawl after it. I know that she'll love crawling after it once she's mobile. 



Fisher-Price Zoom ‘N Crawl Monster is loved by both my children, my almost 4 year old and 8 month old baby. I think that says a lot about a toy because when a toy interests children of such different ages you know that it's going to be enjoyed for years to come! Suitable from 9 months+ the Fisher-Price Zoom ‘N Crawl Monster retails at £34.99 which I think is fantastic value for money! If you are looking for a great gift for a baby this Christmas then I can't recommend it enough.


- I was sent this product for the purpose of this review however all opinions are my own.

11/07/2017

Unique & Unusual Christmas Gift Ideas For Men


Ahh, men. How difficult is it to buy gifts for them? Or is it just me? My other half, my brother, my dad, my granddad, my uncle, my father in law and my brother in law, all total nightmares to buy gifts for. 
I find that they are so difficult to shop for that sometimes I have to ask them what they want and even then they still cant come back with an answer. It's literally like plucking a gift from thin air, a little help would be great! With this in mind I decided to put together a post all about unique gift ideas for men. Who knows, you could get a little inspiration from them, maybe you'll start looking at the more unusual options.

1. A Man Cave
You've got to admit, what bloke wouldn't want his very own man cave? A place for them to escape and unwind and give us women a break too! I know that Nick would love somewhere to play and store his guitars without me using them as a clothes horse, or the kids using them as climbing frame. Secure Metal Sheds from GBC Group would make a fantastic option for a man cave and one which you'd probably not have considered before. The Apex in particular would be the perfect shed for a man cave with it's steel security doors, security pad bolts and rigid steel box frame. It would keep everything safe and secure from the elements and from intruders too. It even has opening PVC windows and is draught proof. A man cave which is suitable for all weather!

2. Zombie Survival Experience 
Day trips and experience days are growing in popularity at the moment, and with so many different themes available it doesn't come as a surprise to why. There's an experience or trip for everyone, no matter what their interests or hobbies are! I recently came across a Zombie survival experience day and I know so many blokes (and women) who'd absolutely love this! I know for a fact that Nick would be overjoyed if I'd surprised him with this at Christmas. What more could you ask for than fighting in a make believe zombie apocalypse?! 

3. Monthly Sock Subscription 
I can't be the only one who gets fed up of finding 101 odd socks everywhere? Especially when it comes to your other half. How hard is it to get both socks in the wash basket? I think a monthly sock subscription would make a great gift, just for this reason alone. Plus, don't most men love socks?

- This is a PR Collaboration. 

11/06/2017

Summer Infant Sparkle N Splash Bath & SwaddleMe Original Swaddles - Review



When Ava was a newborn baby we were sent two Summer Infant products to review. They were the Summer Infant Sparkle n' Splash Baby Bath and the SwaddleMe Original Swaddles, both of which looked fantastic and I couldn't wait to use them. 


The SwaddleMe Original's are everything you'd look for in a good swaddle, but unfortunately we weren't able to use them. Ava wasn't a fan of being swaddled as she liked her arms to be loose. With this in mind I was given the go ahead to pass them onto a friend. I can report back that my friends baby loved them and once her daughter had outgrown them she passed them on to another friend. It's nice to know that they've been enjoyed by other babies and it was a shame Ava couldn't enjoy them too. If you are looking for swaddles for your newborn or buying ahead of your little one's arrival these are a great option to consider. They come in a single pack, through to a three pack, in a variety of different style and pattern choices with prices start at just £9.99. 


Next we have the Sparkle N Splash bath, a three stage baby bath which grows with your child. It’s suitable from birth with it’s clip-on sling and padded head rest. Once your little one has outgrown the newborn stage they are able to use the build in seat with padded seating, which you can remove at a later date.


We got on really well with the baby bath and used it so much when Ava was little. She was comfortable in both the newborn sling and the padded seat and would relax as soon as we placed her in it, like she knew bath time was coming. 
I found it was quite light too so we were able to bathe her all around the house without a hitch. It even has a little plug which you can open so it drains straight into your bath without having to tip out all the water.

The Sparkle N Splash bath tub made bathing stress free, enjoyable and safe. Now at 8 months old she does prefer to sit in the bath with Noah but we do still use it on occasion, she loves splashing about in it. The bath tub comes in two colour options, blue and pink and costs £29.99. 


- We were sent this product for the purpose of this review however all opinions are my own. 

11/05/2017

My Sunday Photo - 45/52



Both kids enjoying a trip to the park this week, they both love the swings! I think Noah could sit in one all day although he's getting a bit big for them now, yet not big enough for the big boy swing! It's quite tricky to push them both at once but Ava is quite happy to sit there and giggle while she watches Noah swing super high. 

OneDad3Girls

11/04/2017

Project 365 - Week 44/52



29th October 2017

30th October 2017

31st October 2017


1st November 2017


2nd November 2017

3rd November 2017


4th November 2017

We've had such a great week this week and it was very much needed after a poorly week or two! We absolutely love this time of year and have packed so much into our week with Noah being off nursery for half term.

On Sunday we headed to one of our local parks for a Pumpkin trail which saw us heading through the woods to find them, all while reading clues and answering questions. It was great and Noah loved finding all the different ones! Ava on the other hand slept in the baby carrier most the time. On Monday we had a chilled out day at home, playing with toys and games and in the afternoon we headed to the park for an hour or so. With it being Halloween on Tuesday we were so excited! My Mum came to visit and brought both kids a Halloween bag full of little toys and treats. It was so lovely of her and it's a little tradition that she started back when Noah was a baby. In the evening we headed to a Halloween party at a local soft play centre and Noah had an absolute blast! A couple of friends from his nursery were there too so he was running around and having a great time with them. They had party games, danced to spooky music, played musical statues, played in the soft play area, won prizes, bounced on the bouncy castle and had their tea there too. It was so good and we'd definitely do it again next year! It was Ava's first Halloween experience and she seemed to really enjoy it, nothing really phases her! Mid week we did our usual of trips to the park, walks and visiting family. Then on Friday we went to a firework display and met up with some more of our family. It was the first time Ava had seen fireworks and with her just turning 8 months old I did wonder how she would take to them, but she loved them! She was mesmerised and was even dancing to them at some point, it was so cute and everyone kept smiling at her. Now it's Saturday and we've just had a super lazy day with a random trip to the arcades and a bit of a shop!

What have you been up to this week?