Saturday 28 July 2018

Rainbow Designs Talking Peter Rabbit Plush Toy - Review & Giveaway

For C and E who are almost 6 and 4, Peter Rabbit has been a staple on our television. They have both watched CBeebies since they were tiny with Peter Rabbit being one of their favourite shows.

Over the years, their love has a grown and that brings a bit of nostalgia for me as I have always been a fan of Beatrix Potter. We own so many Peter Rabbit & Friends books, toy figures and we even made sure to see the latest movie in the cinema on Easter Sunday.

Rainbow Designs have a super cute little Talking Peter Rabbit soft toy and both children were so excited to receive one of their own.

He is so soft and cuddly which makes him great for children of all ages, right from birth. In true Peter fashion, he has his famous blue coat and green bag perfect for storing his radishes that he nabs from Mr McGregor's garden!

Giving his tummy a little press prompts him to say one of five phrases such as "a good rabbit never gives up" and "let's hop to it!" The voice is instantly recognisable and you can match it straight to the TV show.

Talking Peter Rabbit is the sweetest little toy and would make a lovely gift for any small child. It's the perfect size for tiny hands, good for a snuggle (as E will tell you as she's brought him to bed with her every night!) and the addition of the phrases gives it an edge over a regular plush toy. I also love a toy that comes with batteries supplied too!

If you want to get your hands on your own Talking Peter Rabbit you can purchase it at £17.99 from Argos, in store or online. You can also keep up to date with Rainbow Designs on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

The lovely people at Rainbow Designs have also set one aside as a prize for one of my readers! To be in with a chance of winning your very own Talking Peter Rabbit, just enter via the Gleam widget below. Good luck!

Rainbow Designs Talking Peter Rabbit

  • This giveaway will run from 28th July until 5th August
  • One winner will win a Rainbow Designs Talking Peter Rabbit plush
  • One entry per person
  • UK residents aged 18+ only 
  • No automated entries
  • Winner will be emailed by myself to confirm their address. I will then pass the address to the PR for the toy to be sent out. The details will not be used for any other purpose.

 (We received this item for the purpose of this post. All thoughts and opinions are my own.) 
Thursday 26 July 2018

Saving to Buy Our First Home

Chris and I have been together a little over eight years now and we have been privately renting the same house together for the past six years. A lot has happened in that time, including having two children, so the two-bedroomed terraced house with no garden just isn't what we need now as we require a lot more space. Sure, they can share their room for a little while longer but being of different genders, they will need their own space eventually and I feel a little guilty that they don't have access to a garden when they want it.

Saving to buy a house when you are already spending hundreds each month to rent a home is tough. In hindsight, I wish we had been able to stay living at home with parents, working and saving, then buying our first home together before children. Life doesn't always go to plan though and now, almost nine years later, we are finally at the stage that we will be making our first step on the property ladder, hopefully within the next 12-18 months.

The only frame of reference that I have are my parents who took a mortgage out on their house around 27 years ago and while discussing the situation with them, it's been really interesting to see just how different things are almost 30 years later. They tell me about how cheap their house was back then and this handy tool from Sunlife shows that within the past 20 years, the value of their home has increased by around £90,000. The home that we have our eye on, after doing a rough check, has increased by almost the same amount which makes it a lot harder for us buying now. We don't want to go for a cheaper house that we don't truly love. I wouldn't say that we are overly picky, we just have certain areas that we would prefer to live in with a nice garden for the children and a bedroom each for them.

I definitely use my parents' situation as a benchmark now, at the age of 26, I'd like to hope that when we are at a similar age to what my parents are now, we'll be close to paying off our mortgage (thinking about a fixed rate 40 year one). It isn't just house prices that are making that difficult for us though. Chris has a great, decently paid job and because I am at home with the children 100% of the time, besides school but I still have school runs to do, I earn money here on my blog through sponsored posts and advertising. Everything has gone up in price, even just from our childhood days. We often joke that we could go to the corner shop with a £1 coin and come back with a can of fizzy juice, crisps and mix up - there is no way you could do that now! Just living in general is more expensive when you factor in grocery shopping, buying new clothing for growing children and let's not even think about the costs of children's birthdays and Christmas! We do scrimp where we can but realistically, we do end up spending a lot of money on necessities in general day to day life.

We are at a much stable place, financially, now so we are very excited to finally find our forever home - although I'll be sad to leave the first home my children have had!

Do you have any tips for first time buyers?

(This is a sponsored post.)
Thursday 12 July 2018

My Summer Wedding Guest Outfit Shopping Tips

If you have been lucky enough to be invited to a summer wedding you will no doubt be looking for a new outfit. Weddings provide the perfect opportunity to treat yourself and buy something really special. To help you to buy the best outfit for you I have pulled together a few of my favourite tips.
Try shopping online
Online stores like offer a fantastic level of choice and do so in practically every size. So, they are a great place to go shopping for a wedding outfit. Plus, they also sell men’s clothes and everything you need for your children too. So, potentially, you could buy everyone’s outfit from this retailer or one like it.
Allow yourself plenty of time
Whether you decide to buy your dress or suit online or in a physical store,start the shopping process early. Ideally, you want to have everything you need at least a month before the actual wedding. This gives you the chance to try your entire outfit on to make sure it all fits and looks right. That way you will have a few weeks to send unsuitable items back and receive the replacements. Or, if you prefer, make the necessary adjustments and enhancements yourself.
Follow the theme
If there is a dress code or theme mentioned in the wedding invitation, try your best to follow it. Doing so will make sure you fit in and feel comfortable on the day. It will also please the bride and groom.

Don’t be afraid to try something a bit different
Weddings provide you with the perfect opportunity to try out something a little different. Never be afraid to try out a fresh look. This guide to choosing clothing that flatters your body type will help you to quickly narrow down your options. Just be sure to try everything on properly. It is especially important to look at yourself from different angles in the mirror. If you are not 100% sure get a friend or family member to take a few photos of you wearing your new look. This will enable you to take a few days to consider if you really should stick with that new style of clothing.
A few practical considerations
Try to think about the practicalities. For example, if the weather is not as you expect, ask yourself whether you will be able to stay dry and warm or cool enough. It is particularly important to select a pair of shoes that will be comfortable enough to wear all day as well as look good.
Getting yourself in shape before the wedding
If you would like to lose a little weight before the wedding, which is something I know a lot of people still like to do, you could try taking the Slimfast Challenge. I did it a while back and found that it worked well for me. You can read about my experience with this type of diet by reading the articles I wrote while following this diet regime. If you are interested in doing so, it is best to start with this post.

(This is a sponsored post.)

Sunday 8 July 2018

Ravensburger Disney Pixar Incredibles 2 XXL Puzzle - Review

July 13th sees the long awaited return of The Incredibles to our screen in 'The Incredibles 2'. C and E are massive Disney fans and C especially is excited to go and see it in the cinema. He's going to have to get in line though, I was 12 when the first movie was released and I loved it so I've been waiting a long time for this!

To coincide with the new release, Ravensburger have brought out a new Disney Pixar Incredibles 2 Puzzle! This one is 100 pieces and recommended for children aged 6+. C turns 6 in two months' time so I thought we'd give it a try and see how he got on. He's never done a puzzle of this size before.

Straight away, C was really excited to see the whole family (and Frozone) on the box and spent some time telling me all their names. Once we'd opened out the puzzle and saw all the pieces, it was a bit like "where do we begin?!" especially as a lot of the colours are similar with mostly reds, blues and blacks. 

Due to the amount of pieces, C did need a little helping hand from me but once we had sussed out the edges, he enjoyed looking at the finished image on the box to gauge where the pieces should go and which order the characters were standing.

The whole puzzle took us around 20 minutes to complete, which I thought was perfect and not too long that C would get bored and want to do something else. He was eager to find that feeling of accomplishment once he'd finished. The pieces themselves are perfect, in true Ravensburger fashion, with a great finish and no sharp edges. Doesn't it look fab? We had lots of fun and it's definitely one that we'll go back to a lot.

You can pick up your own Disney Pixar Incredibles 2 Puzzle from Amazon for only £8.99.

(We received this item for the purpose of this post. All thoughts and opinions are my own.)