Date Night With Gousto

The more children we have and the older I get the less I can be bothered to make time for a date nights with my husband.

This is a huge bone of contention in our house as its something thats very important to him so we have to find a little bit of compromise.

Food is a big love for both of us so the perfect way to spend a little time together without the stress of going out is taking an evening or two away from the chaos of family meal times and preparing a meal for just the two of us.

This is however pretty time consuming so when we were asked to sample some meals from Gousto I thought this would be a great way to save some time and forethought in our very limited amount of alone time.

Gousto is so quick and easy to use. You simply need to log into their site, chose the size of box you require and select which meals you fancy from a varied list for the week ahead.

The box is then delivered directly to you door with all the ingredients carefully weighed out and prepared ready for you to follow the easy to use recipe cards that are provided alongside your food.

First up for us was a sticky chilli beef burrito with a lime mayo.

 All I needed to do was to grab the bits I needed that are all listed in words and pictures for you on the sheet and get on with the cooking.

The rest of the week we got to sample a curried chicken and sultana rice with a spicy kick that was complimented perfectly by the sweetness of the dried fruit.

Sea bass on smoky chorizo chowder that teamed a gorgeously creamy chowder with the crispy skin of the melt in the mouth fish.

And finally a chicken, red pepper and lemongrass curry which bought a completly take on rice for me.

Meals can become something of a chore at times and the ability to pick something you might not ordinarily choose really opened my eyes to recipes that I would usually consider to time consuming to prepare.

If you are looking for something to take the monotony out of the weekly meals plans, need something that is a great time saver or simply fancy trying something a little different then I highly recommend you give Guosto a try.

*we were given this Gousto box for the purpose of this review and they are all my own, honest opinion.

 

FEGO Banstead:A Eatery Perfect For All The Family

FEGO Banstead:A Eatery Perfect For All The Family

How often do you walk past a restaurant or cafe and immediately dismiss it for not being ‘child friendly’?

For me this is something I do regularly with my brood, as lets face it eating out with small children isn’t always the most enjoyable and stress free experience.

For a while now I have passed by FEGO in Banstead gazing in at their stunning decor and  scrumptious looking cakes longing for a few childfree hours to while away my time.


It looked far to pristine to take my motley crew into and the thought of them in there would bring me out in a cold sweat before my feet passed the threshold!

With these thoughts still firmly in my mind when I was asked along to visit FEGO I was more than a little apprehensive as to how they would cater for us.

We arrived at FEGO on a busy lunchtime during half term and were greeted with a smile and shown to our table near the back of the restaurant that was buzzing with a great atmosphere and full of a real eclectic group of people…including children!

The menus were brought over and I was happy to see there were a good range of different meals without the menu being large and over bearing. We were also welcome to chose from the breakfast menu even though we were there for a late lunch.

I love flexibility in restaurants as lets face it a stack of warm pancakes are welcome at anytime of day!

There is something to cater for all tastes from full english breakfasts to delicious salads, juicy burgers to pizzas and so much more.

The boys were kept amused with the colouring sheets while waiting for their burgers that they picked from a great selection that offers something a little different to the usual chip heavy childrens menu.


I opted for spicy scrambled eggs that were a tasty combination of eggs, cheese, avocado and tomatoes with a fiery kick of jalapeño and my obligatory soya latte.

Frankie’s allergies were catered for brilliantly and not a scrap of their burgers were left on either of their plates.

Crispy fresh chicken breasts served in soft rolls with plenty of salad and juicy, homemade beef burgers would be hard to resist.


It wouldn’t be a meal out without a sweet treat to finish it off. The boys went for a bowl of creamy blueberry ice cream and a sticky waffle covered in vanilla ice cream and sumptuous chocolate sauce.

All my preconceived ideas of this restaurant were quashed the minute I entered the restaurant.

The staff were all warm and welcoming, the food was beautifully presented and a delight to eat and the decor is simply stunning.



FEGO has something to offer the whole family from grabbing a quick pastry to a cosy date night with a cheeky cocktail or two.

There is so much more that I want to try such with their infamous ‘coffee in a cone’ being top of my list.

*collaborated post.

Bob The Builder Switch & Fix Bob:Review

Bob The Builder has graced our screens for many years now and all of my children have love to watch his adventures.

My youngest is a huge fan at the moment so when we were asked to try out the new Switch & Fix Bob I know that he would be the perfect tester.

I love a toy that allows children to use their imagination to its full potential and Switch and Fix Bob did just this.

The cheery looking Bob comes kitted out with everything he needs to do what he does best.

He is suitable for children aged 3+ and is available for RRP £19.99.

His trusty tool belt holds a jackhammer, saw and auger drill bit that rotates until you come across the bit that you need for the job simply by pressing down on Bob’s safety helmet.

 Once the bit is selected another press on this hat will release the bit so he is ready to get on with the job at hand. it also activates flashing lights and familiar phrases from the show that made Oscar’s face light up as soon as he heard them.

Each bit is translucent so once it is attached to Bob’s drill and pressed against a firm surface it lights up and makes construction sounds just like the real thing.

Oscar had a brilliant time selecting the right tool for the job and moving around the house and garden pretending to sort all those little jobs that Daddy hasn’t got around to doing!

As I said earlier this toy is great for imaginative play, helps with the development of fine motor skills by switching around the drill bits and allows you to have a talk though the importance of safety around real tools with the clever addition of a safety visor for Bob to wear.


Bob kept Oscar engaged for a good while and the set up is simple so its a toy he can easy go to for independent play whenever he feels like it.

He was a real hit in our house and I would love to know if this is a toy your little ones would enjoy?

*We were given this toy for the purpose of this review and they are all my own honest opinions.

 

 

Dinosaurs Invade London At Jurassic Kingdom

Who would have thought that tucked away in a suburban part of town there would be grand Georgian house with stunning grounds homing a whole host of dinosaurs!

Last week we went on the hunt for them and wasn’t disappointed.

After a more than a little fraught journey to from South London we made it to Osterley House in Isleworth, which a a stunning National Trust property with acres of beautiful land that is just perfect for hosting Jurassic Kingdom which is there from now until the 17th April.

It is accessible by public transport but a long walk from the train station for little legs or a short bus journey but the buses are only scheduled every 20 mins which was a long wait for my impatient children.

The car park however is huge and free to National Trust members of £7 all day.

Time slots are available to book easily on line for the event and I would suggest you allow yourself plenty of time as there is lots to see and do.

The Jurassic Park style entrance paved its way into the attraction itself which has you following a path through the grounds spotting dinosaurs as you go.


Some are static but the majority have moving limbs and sound effects which the children loved.

It is a far more interactive experience than I had imagined and there are dinosaurs that you can climb onto, a sand pit that lets the little ones try their hand at becoming an arciologist and digging out bones and an education tent where you can sit and watch a short show that explains a little more about dinosaurs.

As far as eating goes the places is perfect for picnicking as there are so many great places to pitch up. There is also a small selection of fast food stands where Izzy count resist the churros!

The children also has a great time making us of the National trust facilities which are always a winner by tree climbing, den building and swinging on the rope swings.

All in all it is the perfect day out for dino fans and even those that aren’t so keen could easy make us and enjoy everything else Jurrasic Kingdom has to offer.

*we were given tickets for the purpose of this review and they are all my own, honest opinions.

Country Kids

Getting Rid Of Anxieties With ‘The Worry Plaque’ 

Number four started school in September and amazingly he has settled well and has come on absolute leaps and bounds in terms of his learning and behaviour which is something I never expected.

He is however a complex little thing and he is extremely hard to work out. He bottles things up and is a real closed book.

When he is worried or anxious he tends to  lash out and problems are usually masked with aggression.

It is so frustrating and upsetting for all of us when he reacts this way and although it is an outlet for him it never really gets to the crux of the problem.

When we were asked to try out The Worry Plaque from The Irish Fairy Door Company I didn’t really hold out much hope in it working for us.


The plaque is battery operated and can be mounted to the wall. We are yet to find the perfect place for it so it is currently on number four’s chest of drawers.

The idea is that the child places their hand onto the handprint. The handprint appears red whilst they tell the fairies their worries and when it turns green all their worries are taken away by the fairies and the negative energy they create is then turned into good energy to grant lovely new wishes.


Number four is an extremely pessimistic child for someone of the tender age of five but he has been complexly encapsulated with the magic of this and has been a firm believer that all his worries will be safely taken away for him.


I couldn’t be happier with this fabulous idea that is perfect for little ones that find expressing their feelings hard.

Their are also a whole host of short videos online that show the fairies talking about worries such a bullying, falling out with friends, fears of spiders and many more.

A little bit of fairy magic has done the trick for us and I highly recommend giving it a go for yourselves.

*we were given this plaque for the purpose of this review and they are all my own, honest opinions.

Getting This Year Organised With Gel-a-Peel

All of my children are extremely unorganised…sadly a trait passed down from me and it’s something that I really don’t want them to take into adulthood.
I am always forgetting things, turning up to appointments at the wrong time or occasionally not at all!

I have made a really rubbish role model in this department and as well as getting myself organised this year I wanted the children to start taking more responsibility of their day to day life and get their days into order so I’m not running back and forth to different schools dropping off all their forgotten items.

This year we were challenged to create a personalised diary to start off the new year with Gel-a-Peel and I took this as the perfect opportunity to get number three a little more organised.

She is probably the scattiest of them all and will be starting secondary school in September which is going to be a whole new ball game with regards to the amount of responsibility that will be on her shoulders. So filling out a week long diary of the activities she has and what she needs for each of them will be a great start.

Last year we were lucky enough to be sent a set from Gel-a-Peel that number three had lots of fun creating bundles of jewellery for herself and her friends.

It is a great concept and allows them to use their imagination to get creative and using it to decorate a diary will give it a really individual feel.


She set to thinking of a design she wanted and used a variety of different coloured gels and tips sizes to create something that was individual to her.


Once she was happy with her diary she couldn’t resist some more jewellery making with the sixteen templates provided and the hair clips, bracelets and earrings that are also provided in the set.


Let’s hope the fact that she has been allowed free rein on the design of her diary it will help with the want for her to be more organised. Watch this space!

Sunday Night Games With Yeti In My Spaghetti 

Every year it gets to Christmas, all the board games come out, we have a fantastic time playing with them together as a family and they are then packed away again not to be seen for another year.

This year however I made a pact with myself that we would dedicate one night a week to all get together as a family and take a few hours to connect through the fun of board games.

We are so preoccupied with ourselves all week and get lost to the world of social media most evenings that I felt it really important to have some screen free time and just concentrate on each other.

Sadly I think the days of relaxing Sunday afternoons filled with roast dinners and quality family time are dwindling due to the fast pace of today’s world and it is something I would like to try to keep hold of in our family.

The only problem we have is our family spans such a large age group that it can be tricky to find something that everyone has fun playing and is going to keep everyone engaged.

University Games kindly sent us a game called Yeti In My Spaghetti that seemed a perfect way to kick off our games evening.


This game is aimed at over 4’s and is for two or more players. We had over eight of us all ready to get involved.

The game is set up really quickly by laying the strands of spaghetti over the top of the bowl and then balancing the yeti on top.

We then took it in turns to try and remove the stands of spaghetti one at a time without letting the yeti fall into the bowl.


It was such a simple game but kept the whole family entertained, even down to number five who has only just turned three.

The only issue we had was the youngest two got a little excited when the yeti fell and decided that that the person to make it fall the quickest was a much better way to play!

This was a real all rounder that would be great to play as a family or so easy to follow that it could be set up and played by the little ones on their own.

* we were given this game for the purpose of this review and they are all my own, honest opinions.