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Educational Play with Schleich I'm a big fan of learning through play. Unforced educational play. I'm not a teacher and I don't want to be. I want my children to naturally learn whilst they are having fun. When I was contacted recently...

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Say Eh-Oh to the new Teletubbies toys! There back!! Teletubbies made a joyous return to CBeebies last year, and this year marks the launch of the new range of toys. As you know I was sent a box just before Christmas, and today I can finally...

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Travel: Ox Pasture Hall Hotel, Scarborough Last weekend Nana and I took a rather lengthy journey north for a night away at the Ox Pasture Hall Hotel in Scarborough, with Little Dude in tow. The Ox Pasture Hall Hotel is a luxurious country hotel...

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A Place To Enjoy My Garden I love my garden. I love the fact that I have a garden, especially with the recent gorgeous weather we've been having. Whilst I have a pretty compact garden, there's a lot going on out there. Plants, fruit...

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Cuddles With Ben Cohen Some days I have a really difficult job. Days like this for example. *Ahem* That rather nice young man is former rugby player Ben Cohen. Ben is a bit of an expert when it comes to cuddles. He has...

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Supporting British Industry : Radley Handbags

Posted by SussexMummy | Posted in Information | Posted on 30-05-2012

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By now you’ll be under the impression I have some kind of bag fetish… and you’d be right. The three large boxes of handbags under my bed is proof of that, along with the large number of changing bags I own. When I’m not in Mummy Mode and I have a rare day off, or I’m at a Blogging or Press Event I like the fact that I can dust off an old favoured handbag and use something that doesn’t come with insulated bottle holders or a changing mat.

Though I don’t own many of them – two I believe – the iconic Radley brand is by far my favourite when it comes to handbags. I’m sure several of you remember me for my Radley handbag at Cybermummy last year if not for anything else – it had cupcakes on. 2012 is a very British year, and what better way to support British industry than buying a Radley handbag? Yes, I know – any excuse!!

Radley has a lovely range of bags out this summer and I am a big fan of the “Great British Summer” collection – the perfect addition to any outfit and event this very British summer. So if you’re heading out to a Jubilee Street Party, or making your way to the Olympic Park, or perhaps hiding on the beach from all the excitement, you’re bound to find one that’s just what you need. Here are a few of my favourites to whet your appetite.

“Large Tote Bag” £99
Wherever you find yourself this summer, this is the bag for every occasion.  This tote is big enough to carry all your party or beach essentials – or just your bits and pieces when you’re out shopping – and looks amazing. Featuring the iconic Radley dog tag in a very patriotic red and some super-cute Union Jack bunting, this bag is going to take you from event to event all summer long.

“Large Tote Bag” £9
These bags are great for heading down to the shops to top up on party food for your summer celebrations. Using these instead of plastic bags not only saves the planet, but also looks cool. The Radley  dog gets a very British makeover here in a bright Union Jack pattern which is sure to stand out from the crowds.  And at just £9 you can ‘Rule Britannia’ without breaking the bank.

“Medium Zip Wallet” £45
With the perfect British handbag comes need for a British purse, so look no further than this bright red design. This wallet holds 10 credit cards, has a section for notes and a zipped section for coins. This will last as a permanent reminder of the summer and will go beautifully with any handbag, especially a Radley!

So come on ladies – lets celebrate this very British Summer with a great British brand!


Top 5 Jubilee Activities For Children In Brighton

Posted by SussexMummy | Posted in Information, Sponsored Posts | Posted on 28-05-2012

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With the Jubilee Weekend just around the corner – and half term beckoning – here are some great activities to keep your children entertained!

1. Have a right royal picnic at Preston Park
The green grass of Preston Park should be covered with picnic blankets on the afternoon of Saturday 2nd June as families travel there to celebrate the Queen’s latest Jubilee with a feast of food.
It’s best to turn up early to nab a good spot far away from the busy road which runs past the park
You’ll have to bring your own food and tartan picnic blankets but music will be provided courtesy of Patcham’s silver brass band. There will also be the chance for the kids to have their face painted and to take part in a make-and-wear a crown competition.
The festivities kick off at 12 and last until 3pm – turn up early to nab a good spot far away from that noisy road which runs past the park!

2. Party like it’s 1953
Adults and children will both enjoy an event at Brighton museum on the same day (Saturday 2nd June). Our present Queen’s coronation took place in 1953 and the museum will, for one day only, invite you to journey back to this historic year with an exhibition of memorabilia, arts and crafts events and jiving lessons.
Bring Granny and Grandad along and they might be able to tell you what it was like to live through these stylish times!
The event starts at 1pm, continues until 4:30 pm and you can find out more details at the Brighton Museum website.

3. Catch a steam train at Hove Park
Hove Park is well known for its tennis courts, café and the fact that it used to be situated opposite the Goldstone Ground, Brighton’s old football stadium.
But did you know that it is also home to a miniature steam railway?
You will find this hidden gem at the north end of the park and, on Bank Holiday Monday, June 4th, you can have a ride on the steam train.
Tickets cost £1 for adults and 50p for children and you can find out more details at the Hove Park Railway website.

4. Play on the beach at Yellowave
If Brighton ever stages the Olympics, the Beach Volleyball event would have to be staged at Yellowave, the oasis of golden sand near the Concorde II on Madeira Drive.
On Wednesday 6th June, six to nine-year-olds will get the chance to take part in a ‘Fun and Climb’ event at Yellowave and ten to 14-year-olds can play beach volleyball.
The cost is £5.50 per child and you can book a session by phoning 01273 672222.

5. Make a video in Hove
Film makers certainly seem to be getting younger and younger these days. It is a fact not lost on Bite Size Movies; an organisation which will be running a video film-making course aimed at nine- to 14-year-olds on Friday 8th and Saturday 9th June.
Kids will be talked through the process of story-boarding, shooting and editing a film and encouraged to come up with short fiction films. It is hoped that the finished products will be screened at the Duke of Yorks; a great showcase for budding Steven Spielbergs and Guy Ritchies.
You can find out more details by phoning 07906712553.
Whatever you and your kids decide to do during Diamond Jubilee week, be sure to have a memorable and fun time!
James Christie writes for Yellow Mooncraft supplies shop. Check out Yellow Moon’s extensive range of Jubilee crafts for kids.

Sponsored Post: SofaSofa

Posted by SussexMummy | Posted in Information, Sponsored Posts | Posted on 21-05-2012

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During a year where we are celebrating all things British with the Jubilee and the forthcoming London Olympics I think its time we turned our attention to British manufacturers. So if you’re thinking about getting a new sofa this summer – perhaps to watch the celebrations on – then why not look at SofaSofa.

SofaSofa are a family run business which sells only UK handmade sofas – unlike most other leading sofa retailers – but also ensures they are affordable by delivering them direct to you themselves, not via a courier. In other words you are getting what is in effect a trade price, which is why the ranges are so much cheaper than your usual high street retailer. Plus with every sofa being made “in house” at one of their four South Wales workshops you are guaranteed a sofa of the highest quality and craftsmanship, which is also covered by a two year guarantee. There is also a recommended Fabric or Leather Premier Care Protection to help prevent stains from food, wine, ink, paint as well as scratches, rips and tears – essential when you have children running about the place!

If you head over to their website you can use their unique “Sofa Finder” feature and find just the sofa you are looking for by selecting what size you want, what sort of cover you’re after, and which brand you’re interested in. As well as traditional sofas, they also sell sofa beds, foot stools, and chairs as well as a wide range of cushions to match any style and design.

If the website isn’t enough for you, you can also visit their new 14,000 square foot factory showroom just off the M4 in South Wales where you’ll find the entire product range on display, making that decision just a little easier. Head over to the SofaSofa website now to choose your perfect sofa!

The Jubilee and Beyond

Posted by SussexMummy | Posted in Information, Product Reviews | Posted on 21-05-2012

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We’re just a few weeks away from celebrating the Queen’s Jubilee and you won’t have failed to notice the huge array of merchandise – both official and otherwise – that has been springing up in every shop you go in. There are products to help your party go with a swing interspersed with what can only be described as “novelty” items, as well as the companies cashing in.

If you’re looking for commemorative items that you can use beyond the extended weekend in early June, look no further than this little selection here:

Leanne Shoes (Jubilee Edition) from Hotter
The popular Leanne shoe from Hotter has been given a 2012 twist with the help of red, white and blue laces and decorative insoles. These shoes come with all the comfort you’d expect from Hotter but with a subtle hint of patriotism, and a pair of plain white laces to use as well. The Leanne shoes are limited edition with just 1,200 pairs being sold via the Hotter website and each pair comes in a Union  Jack shoe box with a certificate of authenticity. Once the Jubilee ends these shoes won’t look out of place at Olympic Events and any future sporting occasion, such as Wimbledon or the next Test Match.

Offer: For 10% off your first Hotter order PLUS free delivery enter code PFAUBS at the check-out before July 1st. Cannot be used with any other offer.

Charlotte Beach Bag (Union Jack Edition) from Old Bag Company
The Charlotte Beach Bag was the first bag designed by Sally, founder of the Old Bag Company. Its been given a Union Jack make-over for this year only to commemorate the Jubilee. The bag has plenty of pockets both inside and out, is waterproof and can be put in the washing machine. The ideal bag if you’re planning on celebrating on the beach – weather permitting – but also a great bag for use this summer on holiday and for years to come.
Head over to the Old Bag Company website to check out this, and their other Union Jack products.

London Set from Carddies
The super cute and portable colouring kits make a return with a new design perfect for the Jubilee. “London” features the iconic skyline with the Thames and London Eye, and the characters include the Queen and a corgi, as well as a Policeman and Beefeater. This will be ideal for entertaining little ones on the journey if you’re taking them into London this summer, or if you want a bit of peace whilst you watch the celebrations.
Sets can be bought from the Carddies Amazon store here.

Great British Bear Kit from Gift Horse Kits

This adorable red bear is available in kit form from Gift Horse Kits and has been specially created for this year. The beautifully presented kit includes everything you need to craft this little bear for a loved one or for yourself – needles, wool, stuffing, fabric for details, and the Union Jack flag – as well as very simple and well written instructions, complete with pictures. This little bear is made with a simple knit and purl stitches so is perfect for even the novice knitter. The Great British Bear is available now for £16 with free postage from Gift Horse Kits.

So…? Brit Perfume from So…?

So…? Brit is a fusion of British flowers and fruits – Peony, Rose, Vanilla and Iris – that will leave you smelling patriotic as you party this Jubilee year. The packaging also features a feminine and quirky take on the Union Jack. This perfume will see you through the Jubilee celebrations and beyond with its beautiful summery floral scent. The So…? Brit collection is available now direct from the So…? website.

Lion King T-Shirt from Fabric Flavours
Okay so this is a little tenuous, but I couldn’t resist including this great new design t-shirt from Fabric Flavours. Featuring Simba from the hugely popular Lion King movie with the slogan “Future King” makes this t-shirt a potential for Jubilee celebrations. “I Just Can’t Wait To Be King” is also written inside the collar for an added detail. So no, its not exactly Jubilee related, but its pretty darn cute!
You’ll find this t-shirt over on the Fabric Flavours website.

Union Jack Tshirt from K9 Pet Products

Who said the celebrations had to be limited to humans? Beautifully modelled by my parents dog Monty, this t shirt features a sparkly Union Jack which means your pet can party on with everyone else. The same design is also available as a hoodie and an ID tag. It fits brilliantly, and won’t look out of place at any point this summer. Check out the full range here, all of which has 15% off until the end of May.

John Lewis Opens First Store In Sussex

Posted by SussexMummy | Posted in Home & Lifestyle, Product Launch | Posted on 04-04-2012

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Retail giant John Lewis is opening its first ever store in Sussex on Thursday with a “John Lewis At Home” store on the Portfield Way Retail Park, just outside Chichester. I was lucky enough to get a sneak preview on Tuesday and take a tour around the new store with branch manager Claire.

Boasting 40,000 square feet of selling space over two floors this new store has a wide range of products you’d commonly find within their bigger shops. There is a large selection of home décor and furnishing, as well as an extensive kitchen and lighting section.

Downstairs you will find the Click & Collect Service which makes shopping even easier – you just order the item and collect it from store the next day, and the only selection of Olympic Merchandising outside of a London branch. Perfect if you want to grab yourself a piece of memorabilia for this summers event without having to fight your way into the capital.

Jubilee fever has also struck with a number of Union Jack emblazoned products throughout the store from cushions to deck chairs and food gifts – I can highly recommend the Emma Bridgewater Biscuit Barrel!

Upstairs you will find a comprehensive electrical and gadgetry department which includes the brand new iPad and a number of TV’s – ideal distraction for the men! You will also find a small but well stocked baby section to pick up a few nursery essentials for your little ones, including cots, toys and a bedding.

The familiar John Lewis cafe is also upstairs where they’ll be selling a range of drinks, snacks and light lunches, as well as children’s lunch boxes. A supply of high chairs is ready and waiting! Customer toilets can also be found nearby along with spacious baby changing facilities, and a feeding room – something which is rare even on the high street!

One of my favourite “trends” on offer in John Lewis At Home is the ‘Playnation’ range. Here is the foyer of the new store, decked out in the range.

Can you believe that colourful book display is actually wallpaper? I love it and definitely want some for our home office!!

The ‘Playnation’ range is beautifully bright and encompasses a huge selection of products from table ware to garden items, home decor to office organisation. The mix of wood and colour looks brilliant and I can imagine several pieces finding a place in my home soon. Here are a few of my personal favourites:

This Tiffin Box would be great on family picnics this summer with four handy compartments for your lunch time favourites.

Office storage needn’t be dull with this brightly coloured unit featuring six large deep drawers.

Every cook and baker needs a good set of measuring spoons and I love this set of four – colourful additions to any kitchen.

Summer trips to the beach or just sitting in the garden will be stylish and comfortable for your little ones in this traditional deck chair.

John Lewis At Home opens on Thursday April 5th and with the extended Easter weekend it’s sure to be a busy one – I suggest you start queuing now!!