Thursday, 16 July 2015

Adorable new Bing toys by Fisher Price - At The Entertainer

We were thrilled to be asked to review some toys from The Entertainer; as a toy shop I've frequented, even before Ethan was born, this was an ideal opportunity. We were asked to try out some of the new Bing toys which have been released to support the books and the subsequent TV series. 

These might, otherwise, have seemed a bit young for Ethan but he's grown up with the Bing books and loved the tv show so I thought he'd still really enjoy playing with them. As well as that Skye absolutely loves rabbits so I thought she'd like to play with them too.


The first of the two items we were sent was this 'Bing & Flop' figure set. The set is £9 and the figures are made of a really nice, good quality plastic so I feel like you're paying for that quality with these. I really love the details in this set, Bing's ears are made of fabric and he's also a 'bobble' figure so when he's set on the table he'll wobble around which is really rather amusing for little ones (even 5-year-old little ones it seems).


The second item we were sent was 'Flop's Car' which also comes with a Bing and a Flop figure - The figures with this set are slightly different to the previous one as the Bing has bendable legs so that he can sit in the car and Flop is holding a set of keys. 

This set is £15, which I think is great value considering it has the two figures and the car - This would make a lovely birthday party gift as it's got so much in it. 




Despite the 2+ age recommendation on these toys they are proof that plenty of toys can grow up with a child. Ethan instantly remembered Bing and Flop and thought that the toys were 'lovely, aww really cute'. He couldn't wait for me to get them out of the packaging so that he could have a place. 

Initially he was rather amused by the wobbling Bing and he was happy to just sit and nudge him from time to time to keep him going (a slight case of being pleased by small things, maybe? haha). It didn't take long before he was most interested in the main attraction, though, the car. Car was one of Ethan's first words and although he enjoys a range of things which would be classed as both 'boys' and 'girls', if you're in to the gendered toys thing, cars have been a firm favourite for a Long time! 

He sat Bing and Flop in the front and put the extra Flop into the back and off they went. There's a little detail in the back which involves a revolving platform, of sorts, which has a picture of food on one side, and eaten food on the other, he had to make this vertical to get Flop in to the back seat but when he got out he flipped it around so that all of the characters could have a nice picnic. 

I love toys that inspire imagination and, after knowing lots of the stories, these definitely did that for Ethan, they went on numerous journeys and seemed to be having a great time out in their car. I can see these being a real hit for littler fans, too, as they'd be great for that really early imagination play that I remember so well. 

The sets are really well made so I think we'll have these in Ethan's collection for a long time, for both him and Skye to play with, and then if we're lucky enough to have another little one these'll definitely be in the 'to be inherited' pile as the quality means they'll last really well. 

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Friday, 10 July 2015

Summer ready skin with 7th Heaven (Formerly Montagne Jeunesse) 'Pineapple Peel-Off' face masks

I have to say I had no idea that Montagne Jeunesse had re-named to become '7th Heaven', it feels a little odd considering they've been the main sachet masks that I've known about for many many years, but the new name is nice and there's no doubting that it's the same company when you look at the packaging and branding; you won't suddenly not notice them in the stores!


I was asked if I wanted to trial some of the 'Pineapple Peel-Off' masks and I was really pleased because I've not done a peel off mask in quite a while, despite having found them really handy in the past. 


These masks are filled with fruity goodness which is great for the skin; the enzymes are an added way to help slough away dead skin cells which are, then, lifted away by the peeling action of the mask. 

The other benefit of this cocktail of fruits is the smell, oh this mask smelled just lovely; just perfect for that tropical summer feeling! Pineapple, as you'd expect, is what comes through the strongest but you do get a hint of the other fruits and I can imagine this would be nice to smell on your face whilst sipping a cocktail (or a fruit juice) on a nice summer's pamper evening. 


The mask, itself, is a transparent yellow and has a thick gloopy feel to it as you apply, it does take a bit of time to cover the face evenly due to the texture but you'd expect that with any mask of this formula. 

Once the mask is on, though, it feels amazing. Especially in the warmer weather that we've had, and with the hot weather we've been promised, this mask is so refreshing and really nice and cooling on the skin. It does tighten a little as it dries but not uncomfortably so at all. 


I half expected to look like a member of the Simpsons family with this mask on but, although there's a slight yellow tint, it barely shows up - It's probably one of the least offensive looking face masks I've used and that's always good when you have children (haha I've freaked Ethan out on numerous occasions with face masks before). 

The mask peeled off in almost one piece, none of this little bits here and there, which can be thoroughly annoying, it has that really satisfying feeling you get when you use this type of mask. Once it's off your skin might be a little red but only for a couple of minutes (I put that down to the active enzymes). 

I was really pleased with the results of this mask. I do suffer from dry skin and it definitely helped lift those obvious bits but as well as that it left my skin feeling really smooth and soft, I also think that some of my blemishes were a bit less angry afterwards. I definitely need to be using peel off masks more often, though it's never a good idea to look at them afterwards, haha. 

The masks are £1 on their website, here, and I'll be keeping an eye out for them in the regular stores that you find these sachets in. I love 7th Heaven masks and definitely want to add to my collection (I feel like it's always good to have a few in your stash because you never know what sort of mask you'll want from one day to the next. 

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Tuesday, 7 July 2015

Birchbox UK - Unboxing / Review - July 2015 'Make a Splash'

It's beauty box time, already, rather impressed that Birchbox is back in to sending out in the first week of the month rather than the second and third as many of us had become accustomed to! 

I had known that we were getting bags, this month, with our Birchbox, but in the past that's been a bag in a box so I was rather confused when I got a padded envelope delivered by Yodel and I wasn't expecting anything that size... Until I opened it and was greeted with a beautiful turquoise/mint green bag filled with products. 

This has been my favourite Birchbox, or should I say Birchbag, for ages so I am really, really pleased with it, if you like it and decide to sign up then please consider using my referral code which will get both yourself and myself £5 to spend in the Birchbox shop: https://www.birchbox.co.uk/invite/m6bv3


The theme for July is 'Make a Splash' which, as you'd expect, is a travel/poolside related theme. This ties in with the fact that the box has been replaced by a bag, this month, as the bag is 'splashproof' and the BB team suggest it as being great for poolside essentials. 


And here's what my bag contained. I was so pleased to have got the turquoise bag (which I think is almost a mint colour) as it's my favourite of the four. It's also Really, Really well made and has some lovely detailing such as a pouch inside and a beautiful, almost rose gold zip. 



The first item which caught my eye was the Pop Beauty eye shadow trio in 'Peach Parfait' which is listed as having a retail value of £15.50. That's a pretty darn pricey eye shadow trio, I must say, but I am very pleased it's in the bag. I have had a few Pop Beauty items before but I've wanted to try their shadows after having seen them on many US unboxing videos. The shades in this are beautiful, although they're listed as being peachy, which is something I wouldn't normally go for on the eyes, they're really wearable and I'm looking forward to trying these out. 


Another full sized product, next, which is the Soigne nail lacquer in the shade 'Fruit de la Passion' which is a beautiful pastel peach shade. I'm interested to see what the other available shades are like but this one is a definite winner for me. I Probably have a similar shade but, hopefully, it'll be different enough to justify adding it to my collection. Very summer friendly, beautiful and these polishes are such, such nice quality. These are worth £11 each so we're already covering the cost of the bag and again some with the first two items. 


The next item is the bonus beauty extra and it's a beautiful lace, elastic head band in the shade 'Aqua' - I really like this shade of blue and the lace effect makes this so sweet, a real step above the basic elastic headbands you can get. These are £11.40 for a pack of 8 so it's worth a little under £1.50. 


Next up we have a Benefit product. It does seem to have become the norm to find Benefit in Birchboxes but I'm sure no one is complaining about that! This, too, is particularly helpful in weather like this, the 'Dream Screen' 45spf face cream will be really handy for so many people in the really hot weather we've got at the moment (another heat wave predicted in a couple of weeks so get using this one!). It's only a 6ml product but facial spf products tend to go quite a long way and I'm interested to see what the Benefit offering is like, compared to what I currently use. 


Almost at the end, now, we have a tube of Unani 'Aloe Vera Gel' which is another, very seasonally appropriate product. With the weather being so hot we're all so much more likely to burn, even if you're careful, so an Aloe Gel will be amazing to use on upset skin; soothing, cooling and healing, I can imagine it'll feel heavenly on any irritations. This is a 30ml tube which, if you use it on specific sensitive areas, will last well. 


Lastly we have the Indemne ' Eau de Genie facial spritz. I can imagine this will be amazing on really warm days to refresh and cool the skin; it contains grapefruit, lemon, apricot and tomato waters and is said to leave the skin clean, soft and glowing. It's a 10ml bottle which isn't huge, but considering the type of product I can imagine getting plenty of use. 

I'm really pleased with the mix of familiar brands and new brands, this month, as well as the variety of products and the quality too. The sizes is fantastic and they're really fitting for this time of year/the theme. Definitely my favourite box in a long, long time. If you love the box like I do, and want to get your hands on something similar, then don't forget to use my referral to get yourself, and me, £5 in the Birchbox shop - https://www.birchbox.co.uk/invite/m6bv3

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Monday, 6 July 2015

Some unplanned radio silence!

Just a quick note to explain why, after getting loads of posts out and getting up-to-date with everything, I've all but disappeared! 

My goodness, we've had a rubbish couple of weeks. The temperature and having had to do a couple of extra legs of the school run mean that I've been absolutely exhausted and really, really run down - This year hasn't been ideal for my health but this past few weeks have been the cherry on the cake for nasty, ick. 


Even more recently Ethan has been struck down with the sickness bug that's been going around, he's been sick for days in a row but then will be fine for 24 hours in between, and then sick again. There's been much resting, lots of washing machine usage and very little laptop usage! 

I do plan on getting some outstanding posts done, but if I'm quiet then please give me the benefit of doubt, I've not given up on my lovely blog, just having a rather tough time at the moment! Hope you're all loving the weather (though maybe not today, today is grey).

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Thursday, 18 June 2015

More flavours of Coffee from Beanies - Irish Cream, Cinder Toffee and Double Chocolate

I wrote about some flavours of Beanies Coffee around this time last year and I really enjoyed them so when I was offered a few more flavours I was really pleased to be able to give them a go, there was some I'd wondered about a few times. 

It's been really interesting trying these because I take my coffee very differently now, namely with no sugar or milk! I hadn't had coffee for ages because I wasn't enjoying it without milk but I discovered that I still, really, enjoy the Beanies coffees even without dairy!


Cinder toffee is one of the flavours that I wanted to try out the most and, I think, it's my favourite of the three that I've had this time. As with all of the Beanies it's not much in the way of flavour but more about aroma, you get a real smell of cinder toffee with this one, and a gentle hint of sweetness. I think I'll try this one with Hazelnut sometime. 


Irish Cream was my second favourite of this three. I wasn't holding out much hope for it but it actually does have a really great scent to it, it definitely smells like Irish Cream and has a softer, creamier taste with that hint of sweetness again. 


Double Chocolate was the least exciting of the three but I did, still, enjoy it. It tastes and smell more like normal coffee than the others but I feel like this one will come in to its own as a combination - So maybe chocolate and hazelnut or Chocolate and cinder toffee would be good; that's definitely my next plan. 

Due to the fact that I don't add sugar or milk to my coffee these are only 2 calories a cup which is great and the sweetness really does take an edge off the strong coffee taste. I definitely really like these. Having just looked at the website, again, I've seen they now do some Decaf flavours which I may have to try to get hold of if we do manage to have a baby (as long as I don't go off coffee).

You can pick Beanies coffee up from their website as well as from some supermarkets so keep your eye out. As well as the instant coffee there's premium roast which comes in the most amazing of flavours, I quite wish I had a coffee machine as I really wish I could try some of them out! 
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