Rainforest Cafe Review

So far we’ve had a pretty chilled summer holidays. Given the fact I’m still working and of course the great british summer, it’s tricky to go full on with days out but last week we took a visit to London to the theatre (more on that in another post) and visited the Rainforest Cafe afterwards.

I’d popped in here last year and stayed just for a drink in the bar as there were no tables available to dine but Z had loved all the animal noises from around the ‘jungle’ and sitting on the bar stool that are shaped like the legs and bottoms of various animals, giraffes, zebras, lions, complete with tails. With that in mind I’d tried to book online the previous week but it was showing up as fully booked so we took a chance and walked in hoping that they would have some tables on stand by and for once it actually paid off 🙂

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Experience

One of our party had had a birthday a week before so they gave her a big birthday sticker and showed us to our tables. We were sat by a big monkey in the trees that freaked the kids out first of all when they saw his eyes move but soon calmed down when we told them it was just pretend. Shortly after when it started jumping around and making monkey noises another freak out ensued but after the initial shock they both enjoyed it immensely every time it went off!

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There are different animals all over the restaurant including bigger monkeys and elephants that move and make sounds at set intervals plus a thunder storm here and there. There is a brilliant ‘pond’ with fish ‘swimming’ on the floor that move when the kids step on them and of course the delightful character Cha Cha, a giant frog that cuddles all the children.elephants

The childrens ‘Rascals’ menu is £12.95 which includes a main, dessert and drink and although a lot more expensive than your normal high street childrens menu you expect it due to the experience surrounding you. Adult meals range from £10-£20, my friend had a prawn linguine and I the pulled pork burger. With some ‘experience’ restaurants the food can suffer but overall it was of a good standard and the portions were a great size and taste.

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The staff were attentive and accommodating, replacing a spilt childs drink and providing our birthday girl with a rendition of Happy Birthday from our fellow diners whilst standing on a chair with a candle in her dessert 🙂

Overall

The kids thought it was magical and really enjoyed it and lets be honest thats what it’s all about isn’t it?

7/10

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Lost my name books.

lost name books

Have you heard of these books? If not, why not?

They are simply BEAUTIFUL!

The personalised books cover the story of a little boy or girl who funnily enough has lost their name. The child goes off on a magical journey trying to find out what their name is and meets lots of lovely creatures, people and animals. As they help out these characters they kindly give him or her a letter they don’t have any use for. At the end of the story the little boy or girl discover what their name is and settles safely back down in their room.

The illustrations in these books are beautiful and hold a wistfulness about them that reminds me of when I was little. Zachary received one of these gorgeous books earlier in the year as a present for being a page boy at my cousins wedding, what a great idea! I had seen these advertised on Facebook and was desperate to get one for him so when he unwrapped it I was probably more excited then he was!

Upon settling down to read it he could easily tell me what each letter was on the journey but was also learning new words and was being able to identify new creatures he hadn’t heard of before like a Yeti for example! Fun, interesting, beautiful and educational!. He was so engrossed in the story that he had no idea what letters we were collecting on our journey and when we got to the end and shouted out ‘Wow, that boys got my name!’ he was super chuffed 🙂

I now have one for Flo, although she is only 22 months old she absolutely adores her books. As the pictures are so colourful and gorgeous in this she is captivated by them. I like to think they will both have fond memories of these when they are older and come to cherish them forever.

As you can probably tell I loooove these books, the fact they are personalised, magical and beautiful all at once makes them a must buy.

So next time when you’re stuck for what to buy for a new baby, a christening, a birthday, a xmas, a thank you or a just because present, think of this. A definite keeper 🙂

Personalise your book now at www.lostmy.name/

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#ToddlerApprovedTuesday

Diggerland Review

Located in 4 sites across the UK you can visit Diggerland in Kent, Yorkshire, Devon & Durham. Its the only place where children and adults can ride and drive real diggers!

I must admit having reservations about going to Diggerland, I mean it really is a boys thing isn’t it?!?!

You’ll be pleased to know, it’s not. I loved it!

Activites

Zachy is 4 1/2 and literally didn’t know what to do first. I thought it would be lots of diggers to ‘dig’ on but there are several rides to go on as well. Including Spindizzy, Skyshuttle and Groundshuttle with the latter being my favourite 🙂 (you were thrown around in this one)

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Additionally there are lots of diggers to dig in the ground, trucks, mini landrovers, go karts, mini tractors and a cute Diggerland train.

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Now here come the really scary bit. The kids are actually allowed to drive FULL SIZE dumper trucks, diggers, 4 x 4’s and JCB’s!!

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If that wasn’t enough there is a soft play, bouncy castle, and a nice climbbing frame/ slide etc to play on.

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Overview

Forgive me for the amount of pictures but it really is good to see all the different rides and trucks to drive. Zachy absolutely adored it with the key phrase of the day being ‘This is soooo awesome mummy, i want to stay here forever!’

You can visit Diggerland for parties and have the use of a private room with lunch. You can book additional ‘experiences’ (additional costs apply) including JCB experiences, formula JCB racing, dumper truck racing and monster digger experiences.

The get the most out of the day your little one needs to be over 90 cms high. Those under this height are free of charge.

Although it is quite dear in my opinion it’s no more so than other theme parks and with it being a smaller park and with not as long wait time for rides its a definite contender if you decide to visit a theme park as it will keep you busy all day without feeling rushed.

Zachy”s official rating: 9/10

Find out more and book your tickets here: http://www.diggerland.com/

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LarabeeUK

Alice in Wonderland Home Made Boys Costume

So I returned from holiday in the early hours of this morning and had a great time in Gran Canaria.

More on that later but more importantly (for Zachy) he had a birthday party to go to. Upon checking Facebook I realised it was an Alice in Wonderland fancy dress theme! I had been so pleased with myself that I had actually sorted a present for the beautiful birthday girl before holiday that I then ran around like a headless chicken looking through fancy dress boxes, checking to see if any fancy dress shops in the area were open and when I eventually calmed down googled the characters in the film.

Having already rooted through the dressing up box I knew what I had on offer and once the King of Hearts popped up on my screen I was on a roll 😉

So the next time your little boy needs an alice in wonderland dress up – here it is 🙂

Use a captain hook or equivalent red pirate top then cut 2 pieces of (ideally) red card out in the shape of a heart, (we had to use pink and paint it red) and attach to a wooden spoon, blue peter styly with sticky tape:

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Get two pieces of yellow card and staple together, measure around the top of said little boys head and staple again, cut out a pointy top to make a crown.

Grab your eyeliner and draw on a twirly moustache and wallah:

King Of Hearts Boys Costume

One King Of Hearts 🙂

Phew!!

Wedding Countdown; Outfits and Duties!

My cousins wedding is next week and Z has the super important job of being a page boy.

He is very excited and cant wait to put on his special suit with his cousin. I’m filled with nerves and hope that he will do what he has to throughout the day, so we have been having regular chats for the last 3 months about his duties of walking down the aisle in front of Steph and making sure he poses nicely for pictures when he is needed!

One huge relief is knowing that his outfit is taken care of unlike the rest of the family! Little miss Flo I think is just about sorted, that hasn’t been any easy process, although she isn’t an offical flower girl I do want her to look beautiful and fit in next to her cousins for pics so she may as well be! A dress was purchased, discarded due to being too small, two further dresses ordered which had to be returned only for us to go back to the original dress as it now she seems to of lost some weight with her walking and running around – phew! This is her dress for the day which was a bargain at only £15 from a local seller who was having a liquidation sale last year.

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I have accessorised her dress with some gorgeous sparkly shoes from Next which are just too gorgeous!

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I’ve been looking for some gorgeous hair bands in silver but still haven’t found any so she may just end up with silver bobbles instead!

I’ve managed to acquire a lovely dress from TK Maxx and think I may be able to squeeze into some kitten heels without it being too much agony on my toe! I will be taking my gorgeous dressy sandals that have been my lifesaver since the arrival of better weather and wanting to have some kind of heel that didn’t kill my broken toe.

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Now it’s just a matter of getting nails done, eyebrows threaded, self tan applied and the trip up to Leeds next Thursday. Keep your fingers crossed that the weather gods are kind to us!

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A Day Out with Thomas

Always looking for ideas of kids days out?

Recently we visited Thomas, yes, the one and only, Tank Engine.

There was a lot of anticipation of the big event so we were up and out early doors. We attended the event at Kirklees Light Railway in Yorkshire as we were visiting family in the area at the time and were very lucky they had discovered it was on the same weekend.

Activities

On arrival there was lots going on:

Platform rides on your favorites including Mavis, Toby the Tram and Thomas

(a quick back and forth out of the platform and back again).

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Face Painting in an old train carriage

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Donkey Riding

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plus a bouncy castle and activity centres that offered the chance for children to colour in pictures and make crafts!

The staff were in Thomas uniforms and the Fat Controller was striding around looking stern (which he was – but that’s another story!)

7The main ride runs from Kirklees to Shelby around a 15-20 minute journey. Our train was actually pulled by Douglas rather than Thomas which was a little bit of a disappointment for  our eldest but seen as Thomas was doing a platform ride it was ok and meltdown was narrowly avoided!

Additionally, a note to take heed of,  we went to a ‘light railway’ so the trains and carriages were on the miniature side, this isnt made overly clear on the website although it does mention it.

Their promotional video shows a normal size carriage so make sure you choose the relevant venue if this is the option you would prefer.

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Overall

Zachy enjoyed the day and even his little sister now plays with his trains and picks up his books to read so I would say overall it was a success. Honestly for the cost of the ticket, a lot was included as all the above was at no extra cost and you could easily make it a whole day out with everything on offer.

Each venue offers different activities and different prices so check out their website for more info: http://www.dayoutwiththomas.co.uk/

 

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Family Fever
toddlerapprovedtuesday

My big boys 1st Valentine

So I explained what Valentines Day was to my eldest today (he is 4) I told him it’s all about telling special people in your life that you love them. Even though you love them all the time it just reminds you to make them feel special and do something nice for them and more importantly to tell them that you love them.

He instantly decided he HAD to send his friend Rosie a card and make her some cake. *Bless!

So initially we decided we would make a card but once we were in the high street and whilst Mummy was choosing Daddies card he saw a lush little card with a big sunshine and a diamond heart which said you brighten up my world whenever I see you. Pretty apt for Z and Rosie  as they have known each other ever since Z was born and he is always SUPER excited to see her.

Next we made some shortbread because we could cut it in to heart shapes:

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Then we had to make some cakes as he needed one in a ‘princess case’ :

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This is what they turned out like: (with some dodgy decorating from me!)

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Then he wrote out his card very carefully and drew a pic on the envelope.

Luckily I had some little gift bags which are ideal for cakes and sweets so we packaged a cake and a biscuit in there:

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This is the finished article. My big boys 1st Valentine 🙂

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Honestly my heart is bursting!!

Hope you all have a lovely Valentines 🙂

xXx