A Strong Coffee

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

Win A Pair Of Tickets To The Baby and Toddler Show

Baby and Toddler Show

I don't know about you, but when I was pregnant I loved looking at all the latest things for babies. Well there is now a Baby and Toddler Show coming up on 10th - 12th October in Bluewater where you can do just that. Oh and there's loads of toddler bits too! With over 150 brands, great money saving deals and free expert advice, this sounds like an event not to be missed for anyone that is pregnant or has little ones. If you live nearer Manchester then there is one there on 26th -28th September and you can find more information on the Baby and Toddler Show website.

I am really pleased to be able to offer one of my readers a pair of tickets to the show in Bluewater on either the 10th, 11th or 12th of October. Just complete the Rafflecopter entry below. Good Luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Win competitions at ThePrizeFinder.com - See more at: http://www.theprizefinder.com/content/pair-tickets-baby-and-toddler-show-bluewater#sthash.2UDjvHEX.dpuf

Chocolate and Marshmallow Fluff Whoopie Pies

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I have never tasted whoopie pies before so have no idea if these taste as they should, but fancied having a go at making them. I must admit I was hoping for something light and they weren't, but the boys enjoyed them and have asked for them again so they can't be that bad!

So what do you need to make them? Well there are loads of different recipes on the web but as I had forgotton to order butter on my Tesco shop I went for one using vegetable oil instead.

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To make 12 whoopie pies (24 halves) you need:

  • 250g plain flour
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 5 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
  • 200g caster sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 125ml vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 180ml milk

You just mix all the ingredients together and then place it in blobs on a piece of grease proof paper on a baking tray.

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These were then put in an oven at 180C for 12-15 minutes.

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I let these cool before filling with a layer of marshmallow fluff, and enjoy.

Tasty Tuesdays on HonestMum.com

Monday, 1 September 2014



On Friday last week I took the boys to see a life sized replica of the Bloodhound supersonic car at Brooklands museum. The real Bloodhound has not actually been built yet, but is hoped to break the current world land speed record of 763 mph held by Thrust SSC. So what was special about this replica? Well it is a World Record itself, being the World's Largest K'NEX structure, using over 383,422 parts. It was built by the RBLI as well as BLOODHOUND fans over a 2 month construction project. I think that you will now understand why I was more than a little nervous about the boys taking a closer look and asking how it was made and poking it a bit. (I am pleased to report than the structure is still intact!)

close up of k'nex bloodhound

This World Record build was commissioned by the BLOODHOUND 1K Club to promote The BLOODHOUND project, which aims to inspire children about science and engineering by developing a 1,000mph Land Speed Record car. Well I am pleased to say that the boys were certainly keen to have a go at constructing themselves and big man had a go at making his own K'NEX cars and testing it on a runway. Here is how he got on.

He was also very keen on all the motorised K'NEX toys that they had to play with too! Who knows maybe this has sparked an interest in Science and Engineering into my little men for the future. Lets hope so.

K'NEX models

We recieved complimentary entry into Brooklands Museum for this event and the boys recieved some K'NEX goodie bags.

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Sunday, 31 August 2014

Shuffle Play Doh Cards Review and Giveaway

Shuffle Play Doh card game

You may remember that recently we reviewed the Shuffle GUESS WHO game and really liked this travel sized version of the game. We were also given the Shuffle Play Doh cards to review as well. The game doesn't involve using Play Doh, although it will certainly give your children ideas of things to make. Instead the game is about finding similarities between cards and telling stories. You deal the cards out and each player turns over 3 cards. There is an unturned card in the middle and this is used for the first player to place their cards using similarities (same colour, both fly, all animals) to get rid of their cards. If they can't find similarities then they can tell a story linking the cards instead.

Play Doh Shuffle cards

The game is actually quite complex for small people. Big man (who is nearly 7) enjoyed it, but he did struggle with it at first. He found the matching similarities part a lot easier than the story telling bit. If you are looking for a storytelling game then this is nice and the children will like the play doh creations.There is a whole range of new card games that can be found by viewing the Shuffle website. I am pleased to be able to offer 2 of my readers a chance to have a go at the game themselves. Just complete the rafflecopter below. (Don't forget there is still time to enter the GUESS WHO giveaway too!)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

- See more at: http://www.theprizefinder.com/content/2-x-shuffle-play-doh#sthash.ihlhUaeG.dpuf

Saturday, 30 August 2014

Life Canvas Stationary Review and Giveaway

life canvas stationary

As a Parragon book buddy I was sent some stationary from their Life Canvas Range to review this month. I don't know about you but I write a lot of lists. Having made the mistake of doing them on sheets of paper and losing them all around the house, I now opt for a notebook instead. The Wild pocket notebook is a perfect size for jotting down all the things on my to do list.

life canvas pocket notebook

The notecard set is also nice. They are like postcards with feathers as the picture and a coloured back.

life canvas notecards

I always like to write a little note when the boys send thank you letters for Birthdays so this is perfect. You can see other products in the Life Canvas range here.

Parragon have kindly offered a set to giveaway to one of my readers, all you need to do is complete the rafflecopter below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Parragon Gold stars

On other Parragon related news, I thought I should update you on big man's Gold Stars challenge. In short the Gold Stars books are designed to help bridge the learning gap over the 6 week holiday. I have to say they have been great (we bought the Maths one too.) He does a couple of pages at a time and enjoys them. He isn't particularly keen on doing lots of work so having books like this where he can complete them little and often is excellent. Unfortunately having me as an ex-teacher as him Mother probably isn't the best as I mark very hard and I hope he is also gaining some exam practice tips for the future too!

We are part of the Parragon Book Buddies and have received these products to review.

- See more at: http://www.theprizefinder.com/content/stationary-bundle#sthash.YuKFGeWA.dpuf

Friday, 29 August 2014

Moshi Monsters Series 11 Finale and Giveaway!

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I can't believe the countdown has gone by so quickly but today is our series 11 finale. Please meet Weegul the Wobbly Dobbly.


Spoilt, demanding, persuasive, I'm sure we have all met someone like Weegel.

Wobbly Dobblies are fangtastically cute but goopendously demanding, especially if they don’t get their way. When they are not asking passers-by to plop glacĂ© gooberries on their wafery horns, they are insisting on having their cushions plumped up and their backs scratched.

Wobbly Dobblies like waddling around Crystal Grotto but they can also be found collecting candied fruit in Pawberry Fields. They like everything and anything. Well except walking and choc chips.

So which is your favourite Moshling of the series. I like Darwin whilst middle man (our Moshi Monster expert) really took a shining to Doyle. If you are a fan or know one then why not enter our giveaway to win a set of the series 11 for yourself. Just complete the Rafflecopter below. Good Luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

- See more at: http://www.theprizefinder.com/content/set-series-11-moshlings#sthash.qxU8h3uW.dpuf

Thursday, 28 August 2014

Nick Jr Leap

Nick Jr Leap
It is safe to say that our summer holidays aren't exactly going to plan. Rubbish weather and me being ill whilst trying to look after three little rascals was not on my agenda. But hey that is life and sometimes you just need to find something that will keep your children entertained for a bit so that you can rest. So when an e mail popped in my inbox about the Nick Jr Leap website, it really couldn't have come at a better time. Middle man is a lover of all things Nick Jr so getting him to play some educational games was a winner. As a parent you log your child(ren's) name and age and then they can start playing games with their favourite characters (Bubble Guppies, Team Umizoomi, Dora the Explorer) tailored to their age range.

screen shot of Nick Jr Leap

Middle man was happy playing with his Team Umizoomi friends helping them count flowers in a gardening game. I was happy as he was learning at the same time as playing as it has been developed with the Early Years Curriculum in mind. I would definately recommend having a look at the site if you have little ones (up to 7) that need something to entertain them before the schools go back.

Nick Jr Leap logo

Nick Jr are sending us a bordem busting kit to say thank you for sharing this information, but as always all opinions are my own.