Sunday, 25 November 2012

Thumbs up for Hedrin Once Lice Treatment!

A couple of weeks back I got an email asking me if I'd like to review some lice treatment and yes I tempted fete, I emailed back to say my children had been free of lice for some time now and I hoped it stayed that way, but why not - I'd take some for the future and hope I never need it!

Next day at school pick up I start to notice the familiar signs back on the doors 'please check your child for nits'.  Oh blast thinks I, I totally cannot be bothered to deal with those little critters again.  I check my three kids hair that night and breath a sigh of relief, all looks fine.  However, a couple of days later I notice that my little Miss E is having a good old scratch.  Check number two and oh yes, there they are!

Well what good fortune I said yes to receiving some Hedrin Once liquid gel ready for when I need it.  Little did I know I would be needing it within a couple of days of it arriving! After coming back from football with JJ at 6.45pm the last thing I needed was to have to deal with nits so I was super pleased to see that the Hedrin Once treatment works really quickly - 15 minutes in fact, or you cna leave it longer if that is convenient.

I covered Miss E's dry hair in the liquid gel, rubbed it all in well and sat her in front of the TV for about 20 minutes whilst I tided up the dinner things in the kitchen.  Then off we went to the bathroom and I covered her hair in shampoo as directed, while worrying that my shower might tun into a foam fest with the amount of shampoo I used!  Luckily for me the Hedrin Once contains anti-foaming ingredients to ensure this did not happen.

I washed all the Hedrin out and conditioned her hair and then we sat down for a good combing session. The Hedrin does not state there is any need to comb the lice and nits out but I like to be extra careful and always find it satisfying to see those dead lice and their egg cases removed.

We are now a week after I treated Miss E and I have been keeping a good check and have not seen any further activity.  I pray this is them gone once and for all!

A couple of tips for you if you are going to use this type of product, make sure you cover your child's shoulders in a towel as I find the oily gel does stain and also make sure you wash the shower throughly as of course it becomes slippery.

Ahh look at my good natured little girl!

Disclosure: We received this product free of charge for the purpose of this review. I have not been instructed what to write and I remain honest.

Saturday, 24 November 2012

Disney have done it again with #WreckItRalph

In February 2013 Disney will release their newest movie 'Wreck It Ralph' and in my humble opinion it will be a roaring success.  Last Sunday my family and I travelled up to the Empire Leicester Square for the official multi-media preview screening of this film and it was a hit, we all loved it.  From age 5 - 39, it went down a storm!

We have all come to expect a lot from Disney, especially in recent years. Films like Monsters Inc, Toy Story and Tangled have firmly established themselves as family favourites and Wreck It Ralph is sure to follow in their footsteps and become a must see movie.  It will certainly be joining our family DVD library when it is released.

The storyline is incredibly inventive, as I sat there and watched I found myself saying to my husband 'who thinks these things up?'.  It is just so clever. The film is set in a traditional amusement arcade and once all the customers go home and the shop door closes it is time for the characters to clock off-duty and come out to play. They travel around via their own quirky tube system through the electricity cables that plug in the gaming machines and they all meet up in Game Central Station - I just loved it!

The animation is superb and really varied too as there are so many types of arcade games featured that you get little aliens, cute girls, fighter types and everything in between. The main character of the film is of course Wreck It Ralph and we follow his journey to find acceptance and family.  He no longer wishes to be the 'baddie' and there are some really simple themes in this film that will talk to your children in language they understand. It will certainly help our kids to start thinking about their actions and presents a really great talking opportunity and they can think about - is it right for any person to be excluded?, do we all have to be the same? and Is the grass really greener on the other side?

I don't want to give too much away about this film as it is so good that you must go and see it yourself.  Suffice to say there is friendship, love, comedy and even a little bit of scare all bundled up as a PG rated movie.

I seriously cannot recommend this movie enough! 10/10 form our house.

Take a peek at the trailer and see if you fancy -

If you like the lookod the film, why don't you get your kids in the mood for the movie release by downloading some super colouring pictures - my kids are going to love these! There are also games they can play online too!

Disclosure:  We received tickets for our family to see this film free of charge.  I have not been instructed what to write and I remain honest.

Thursday, 15 November 2012

Review: Friends with Kids DVD

Sometimes life gets too busy and you just need to stop and take a break.  I got to this point late last week.  I’d been at work training all day, my husband was working the evening, I had finally got all the kids to bed and I mentally shouted stop and slumped down on the sofa.  The kitchen still needed tidying after our dinner, the dining room floor looked like a full scale food-fight had happened but sometimes you have to say who cares? I certainly didn’t, time out was the order of the day.
That left me with the taxing decision - what would I do that meant I could enjoy my chill-out time that evening?  A long warm bath?  Nah the kids were not quite asleep yet, I don’t think I could deal with the chit chat! Get my craft box out and makes some cards? Hmm I don’t think I even had the energy to manage that. Sit on the sofa and watch a DVD with a hot chocolate? Yep sounds like a winner and what a fabulous film I had to watch.

Friends with kids was released on DVD and Blu-ray earlier this week on 12th November and I can promise you if you buy this for someone for Christmas they will not at all be disappointed.  I loved this film, not just a little bit but a whole lot. I will most definitely be watching it again and again and I am already planning to get some girlfriends round next time dh is working in the evening.
The main plot running through the film is that two single 30 something friends see how having kids is messing things up for their married friends and decide there must be a better way. So they agree to try for a child together but to carry on their single lives, dating other people, Of course there are lots of laughs and uncomfortable moments as they decide to get intimate in the name of falling pregnant.

Once the baby arrives there are all sorts of issues that this non-couple have to deal with, things that those of us who are parents will be so familiar with – the baby blues, a baby who won’t stop crying, jealousy,  babysitting. Of course all the normal trials of being a new parent are exaggerated by the fact that the parents do not live together and are not in a traditional relationship.
As well as the storyline around the central couple Jason and Julie, there are also two more couples who feature heavily in this film and form part of the tight friendship group. It is really interesting to see how these friends respond to the unusual situation that Jason and Julie have put themselves into. And it is interesting, I can't say I know anyone in real life who has decided this is the way forward for them.

Now I’m going to be mean and not give too much away about this film, as I really would not want to spoil the plot for you. It is such a good film and for me it panned out just the way I wanted it to, there were laughs, tearful moments, my heart jumped in my mouth at a couple of points and the ending worked. However, I did find myself tweeting as it ended ‘ohh I wanted more’ but that was not because it didn’t give enough, I just could not get enough.  I see a sequel in the future…
I will happily give this film a 10/10 for a great night in with the girls.
You can buy Friends with Kids now on Amazon for just £10.00.  It is a snip!
Playtime:  103 minutes
Rating: 15
Staring: A brilliant cast many of which were in Bridesmaids together - Adam Scott, Jennifer Westfeldt, Maya Rudolph, Chris O’Dowd, Kristen Wiig and Jon Hamm.

Check out the trailer and see for yourself how fab it is -

Sunday, 4 November 2012

Review: Sylvanian Families Campervan from The Entertainer

You know how some review opportunities make you more excited than others?  Well this was one of the ones that got me all fired up.  One of my little twinnies is forever on at me to let her have some Sylvanian families stuff, she has been nagging me for about three years now. Every time she spots them in a shop (mostly our local Entertainer branch) she tells me about how cute the little animal figures are and that she wants some for her birthday, Christmas or any other reason she thinks she might get away with.

I have to be honest and say that I have avoided buying them for the last few years as I did buy one small set when she was about 2 years old . There was a baby, cot/playpen type thing, little chair, drawers and some accessories - it must have been a set for a nursery room thinking about it.  It was very cute, there is no denying that but within a week all the bits had been lost, I have no idea where.  I keep a tidy house but they were never to be seen again. As they are not the cheapest toys on the market I have been avoiding them since.

I think I can now say that at age 5 Miss E is big enough to be trusted with all the little bits and pieces again.  A couple of weeks ago we received the Sylvanian Families campervan and chocolate Labrador family for her to play with and she has been so happy.  Completely delighted and enthralled with the play set, it has genuinely provided hours of play and the little brown doggies have made friends with her dolls and the campervan goes to visit her dolls house and they all have tea together.  I do love a toy that can be added to other things and the play experience extended.  The beauty of small imaginations - play is limitless.

What surprised me most is that my other twin Miss M has also been playing with the set, she is normally very easily bored and does not really 'play' much despite my best efforts but I think because the figures we have are labrador dogs that has been enough to engage her and she has named one of them Archie, which is the name of Nanny H's labrador.

I have often wondered if the figures would stand up to being played with.  I see they are covered in a soft kind of felt-like fur and I assumed that when you scratched them it would come away but I was wrong.  The figurines seem really durable, the limbs can move, the clothes can come on and off and they do seem sturdy, which is great as a set of 4 like we received is £16.00 at the Entertainer.

The campervan retails for £39.99 and comes with lots of little extras so you can have fun playing.  I do always think it is a shame though that the Sylvanian Families playsets do not ever seem to include a figure/ character to play with.  You have to buy those separately. That would be my only negative about these products.

I was really pleased with how easy the figures and the campervan were to remove from the packaging, some toys nowadays seemed to be literally screwed into the box but not so with these. The campervan was also easy to set up and required no adult intervention, my 9 year old did it by himself.

It is suggested that Sylvanian families toys are suitable for children aged 4 - 12 years. But I have to say that they are a toy I'm happy to join in and play with and yes I am a tad older than 12. I think the issue I may have now in the future, is to curb my desire to buy more cute little animals and I have just spotted there is a canal boat and tree house! oh dear.

I snapped a few pictures of the campervan set up for play, take a peek -

We are happy to recommend the Sylvanian Families campervan and Chocolate Labrador Family and give them a 5/5 for play value.

Disclosure:  We received the toys free of charge for the purposes of this review.  I have not been instructed what to write and I remain honest.

Saturday, 3 November 2012

A great afternoons viewing with Warner Brothers

On Halloween afternoon I was working and the kids and Daddy wondered what they might get up to whilst I had the car. It was decided that a trip to the play park and a woodland walk would be fun and would get them all active in the morning. Then they could come home for a warming lunch and an afternoon in front of the TV with the fire, popcorn to munch on and a fest of great Warner Brothers DVD's to watch.

When I got home about 5pm it was lovely to come into a toasty house with chilled out kids who had enjoyed their afternoons viewing. I asked them each what their favourite DVD had been -

Miss M surprised me by saying she had really enjoyed Ben 10: Destroy All Aliens. She has not watched Ben 10 before but she seemed to love the aliens that Ben could morph into.  Lucky that, as in this film Ben is trapped in his alien forms after attending a Total Alien immersion training program on the other side of the galaxy. When JJ used to watch Ben 10 some years back I always liked Grandpa Max and Miss E tells me that she likes Gwen, so there is something for all the family in this film.

Available for £8.99 on Amazon 

JJ was predictable to the end and the slapstick comedy of Tom and Jerry was what appealed to him most. Generations have been watching Tom and Jerry and in my opinion it never loses its appeal. The oldies are definitely the best and these 22 episodes will sure delight any kids who like a bit of spooky fun! I do like it that my kids watch the same kinds of lighthearted cartoons that I watched as a kid, I figure they never did me any harm and I hope they won't for them either. Of course kids programs sometimes throw up topics and scenarios that might not be acceptable in today's 'cotton-wool wrapped society'. But that's OK as it presents opportunities to have a good conversation with your kids about things like whether ghosts are real or if it is OK for Tom to constantly chase Jerry in the hope of eating him.

Available for £5.99 on Amazon

By Chance Miss E loved the film 'Big Top Scooby Doo', but only during the daytime. She can't watch it at night she told me as it is too scary! Sensible little girl, bless her I can remember being the same when I was little too. This 75 minute film is full of werewolfs and the normal mad capers of Shaggy and Scooby. A fun family watch.

Available for £10.00 on Amazon

Disclosure:  Warner Brothers sent us 4 DVD's for the purposes of this review.  I have not been instructed what to write and I remain honest.  

Thank you Warner Brothers.

Friday, 2 November 2012

#WWBack2Best - Week 4 Update

Hello all,

I feel a bit of a diet fraud at the moment if I'm honest.  I have good days and I have bad days, the last couple have been of the latter variety.  I always think the important thing with a diet is to persevere though, however poor things have been we can always make a conscious choice to change things, right then and there.

And this is it, I make that choice right now. It is late in the evening and I'll be off to bed soon but when I wake tomorrow morning I need to be good. This weight has to shift.  I'll be honest - I have not gone anywhere near the scales, so I have no idea if I have lost, gained or stayed the same and until next Friday it can stay that way.  I'll give myself a fighting chance by staying away from the scales until I know I have been better behaved around food.

Planning my food always makes the world of difference to me, so I'll do that -

Breakfast each day - porridge or beans on toast (something to really fill me up!)
Lunch - I'll vary day by day to keep me interested but basically - soup, ryvita and ham, salad, yoghurt, fruit
Dinner - Saturday - roast chicken, pots and 3 veg
Sunday - Spanish tomato and pepper quorn with mixed vegetable rice
Monday - Jacket potato with tuna mayo and salad
Tuesday - Chicken fahijas
Wednesday - Pizza & homemade oven chips
Thursday - Sausages, mash and 3 veg

I will also make sure I set to a few rules for myself -
  1. I'll record all this food on my Weight Watcher ProPoints app because I know that using that reliably helps me
  2. Twice this week I'll do my exercise DVD, I've not done this since about June! ekk)
  3. I need to drink at least 6 glasses of water a day (and then build from there)
  4. Ill use my calorie controlled oil spray, as it is really effective in cutting out the fat (just a word of warning though if you do buy one.  It is worth its weight in gold but read the instructions. Never pump it and do not release before putting it away or your cupboard will get very oily!)

I hope you are doing well in the run up to Christmas.  Have a great week, Mich x

Disclosure:  I have received 6 months online membership and a Weight Watchers hamper for the purposes of undertaking this review of the plan and products. I have not been instructed what to write and I remain honest.