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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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Toys For Your Children This Christmas

Posted by SussexMummy | Posted in Christmas, Christmas Gift Guide, Product Reviews | Posted on 04-12-2012

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Now we’re into December and the doors on the Advent Calender and getting opening Christmas is truly on its way. Before long Santa will be visiting houses across the world delivering presents. If you’re looking for a few ideas of things to put on your children’s lists this year before sending them off to the North Pole, look no further.

Raa Raa The Noisy Lion’s Interactive Playset
Now fans of the hit CBeebies show can own their very own Tree House straight from the Jingly Jangly Jungle. Raa Raa’s playset comes complete with movable Cubby Buggy, Swing and Tree House as well as the Lion himself. Whats so brilliant about this playset is the interactive elements. On the playset there are “Smart Spots” and you just have to place Raa Raa – or any of his jungle friends (sold separately) – onto a “Smart Spot” to hear them speak. The “Smart Spot” knows which character you’ve placed on the spot and you’ll here their actual voice speak. Around the back of the tree house is Raa Raa’s bedroom, accessed by a ladder, and a bed for him to nap in. I love the “Smart Spots” feature and that pressing Raa Raa down on one makes the leaves of the palm tree rise and the Cubby Buggy appear – just like in the show. This is a must have toy for any Raa Raa fan. I can certainly see the fun in buying the other characters and adding more entertainment, and more phrases, to what is already a great toy.

Tickle Time Elmo
Another great toy for your children to interact with is Tickle Time Elmo. This super soft and super cuddly member of the Sesame Street gang is perfect for children who love to tickle. By simply tickling Elmo’s feet or tummy you can make him giggle, and the more you tickle him the more he giggles and shakes. I found playing with this strangely addictive, and ended up in fits of laughter myself. He’s a gorgeous little character who is sure to become your little ones new best friend.

Tiny Bike
Bikes are massively popular at Christmas, and if you want to get your toddler a first bike this year, try a Tiny Bike. Featuring fully adjustable handbars and seat this bike teaches about balance as it only has two wheels. The bike is ideal for children aged 2-4 years and can be moved easily with a simple push. It also has a little platform for them to rest their feet on when they become confident as they zip around. The spoke free wheels means you don’t have to worry about trapped fingers either. I read about this bike and saw one in action before I got one. Balance bikes aren’t a new thing, but the wooden ones always struck me as heavy or bulky to carry around. This bike actually looks like a “proper” bike, so if you’re getting an older sibling a new bike for Christmas, your little one might appreciate one similar. This bike is really light and easy to carry, and can be used indoors – if you have space – or out. My son took to this with ease and was soon wobbling his way around the lounge on it. It doesn’t take long at all for your child to figure out how to use it, and before you know it they’ll be speeding all over the place. This bike would look great nestled under the tree this Christmas.

Decorating A Child’s Bedroom – Jungle Theme

Posted by SussexMummy | Posted in Home & Lifestyle, Product Reviews | Posted on 07-05-2012

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The majority of Little Man’s toys and books have a jungle animal involved. Giraffes, monkeys and lions are very popular in our house, so when we moved from our flat and Little Man was given a bedroom with plain white walls we had no doubts over what theme to decorate it in. Over the past few weeks we’ve been gathering lots of amazing jungle themed items to use to make Little Man’s room a proper boys bedroom, and we are thrilled with the results.

Duracoat Tough Matt Paint from Homebase in ‘Yellow Submarine’.
This paint contains extra acrylic making it super durable and ideal for high traffic areas. Its also washable which is going to come in very handy when Little Man decides to decorate himself with crayons!
I love this colour and it brightened up the room immediately. It also works incredibly well with the rest of the decorations.

Jungle Wall Stickers by Roommates from Jomoval.
Twenty six stickers of varying sizes featuring an array of creatures found in the jungle, as well as a couple of palm trees, birds and a bright sun. These stickers can be placed on any painted or papered wall, furniture 0r mirrors without causing damage. What’s more you can move and reposition as you want, reusing them if you move or fancy a change of scene, and they are waterproof and wipe clean.
I always wanted to use some type of wall sticker to add pictures to Little Man’s room, and I must have looked at dozens of designs and styles. These were perfect – particularly being re-positionable – and make a dramatic impact as soon as you place them. Little Man saw his wall yellow for a few weeks before we put these up, and as soon as he came back into his room he immediately ran over pointing at them all and poking the ones he could reach. Most mornings he waves at the creatures from his cot! These stickers are just fantastic.

Monkey & Giraffe Decorative Light Switch Cover from Homeplates.
This is a simple cover which is fitted easily over your existing light switch making them a popular home decoration accessory. They are so easy to fit – even I managed it!
I’d never really imagined having a light switch that was any colour other than white, but after discovering the Homeplates website and their vast selection I can see more of these popping up around the house. Inexpensive and so simple the inclusion of this switch cover in Little Man’s room is subtle but so cute.

Jungle Animals Personalised Height Chart from Stuck On You.
Made from high quality canvas and supplied with matching stickers to mark your little ones height on special dates – birthdays, Christmas, etc – these height charts are easily personalised on the website and come in a huge range of designs.
This height chart has featured on my blog before here, but it is still a brilliant part of Little Man’s bedroom and one brightens up a blank wall.

Bespoke Bunting from Just Bunting.
Just Bunting was set up by Karen Davey from Cornwall and she makes a huge range of bunting for all occasions, and she was kind enough to make this colourful personalised bunting for Little Man. The quality is fantastic and it was precisely what I’d imagined – you can see why she’s a member of the #SBS Winners, as chosen by Theo Paphitis of Dragons Den fame.

Green Elephant Organics For Kids Blanket from NaturalMat
This blanket is reversible – the other side has stripes on – and is so soft and snugly. It would be brilliant for wrapping your newborn nice and cosily, or as an extra blanket for use in the cot or in the car, and what’s more its 100% organic cotton and machine washable.

Personalised Safari Wall Art from Alphabet Gallery.
A 15cm square deep wooden box containing the first letter of your child’s name, along with their full name and the origin of it, and their date of birth. This makes a great addition to any nursery and would be a perfect christening gift too.
This item is so beautiful.  The Safari theme provides a great background and the detail that goes into it is exquisite. I am so pleased to have one of these on Little Man’s wall, and I’m sure it’s something we are going to always treasure.

Doodle Zoo Travel Grobag from The Gro Company.
This sleeping bag can be used both at home and on the move as it can be fitted into a car seat or buggy and is five point harness compatible. At 0.5 tog it is ideal for hot summer nights and holiday travel.
This grobag is full of lovely jungle creatures. We have used it in the car seat too whilst travelling past Little Man’s bedtime. The full length front zip makes it easy to transport your little one if their asleep as it gives simple access to your harness. The 0.5 tog means it will get plenty use this summer – should it ever get hot!

Jolly Day Out Portable Storage Caddy from The Gro Company.
Keeping nappies, wipes and creams tidy is easy with this caddy, and the included changing mat and comfy handle means you can carry it around the house with ease.
This was chosen because of its bright orange colour. There may not be a jungle creature on here, but greens, yellows and oranges are jungle colours so its a great match. We keep this filled with nappies and wipes – super cute jungle creature decorated ones from Tesco’s in fact – as well as the essential hand gel and nappy rash cream.  Its great for using around the house, and makes a instant nappy changing station in any room.

Roaring Raa Raa Toy from Toys R Us.
This interactive roaring Raa Raa provides endless fun with a simple push down of his head. The more you press his head the longer and louder the realistic roar, and he even does a little wiggle too!
Raa Raa has been watched by Little Man for quite a while now, so you can imagine his excitement upon receiving his very own Raa Raa – I couldn’t get it out the box fast enough! Little Man loves to press his head down, and often mimicks the wiggling motion when the roar begins. I love this toy because the voice is the same as on the show and its a brilliant copy of a very popular character.

Tigga Shoes from Inch Blue.
Inch Blue are the place to get handmade soft leather shoes, and these bright orange with black stripes make a great jungle addition.

Blue Original 6 month + Soother Two Pack from Mam.
A cute pack of soothers, one of which features a very appropriate elephant! Soothers are only used in our house at nap time and at night, but we seem to lose them all the time, so a good stock is essential.

Jungle Animals Kids Party Boxes from Favours From Us.
These boxes are designed to be used at parties, and would make great goody bags for children to take home filled with sweets. In Little Man’s bedroom they make cute decorations which he could put little bits and pieces in.

Panda Zoobie from Jaz Kids.
This cuddly panda is a great soft toy for your child, but it also holds a secret. It is also a super-soft blanket and comfortable pillow, making it ideal for car trips and cuddling up at home.
This panda has become an instant hit in our house. Little Man loves it, and can often be found carrying it around with him and giving it big cuddles. He doesn’t really use it as a blanket and pillow as yet,  but as a toy its one of his best friends.

Monkey Bibs from Close Parent Ltd.
These bibs come in two sizes – 0 month + and 6 months + – and are soft and absorbent. The 6 month + bib has additional poppers which allow you to fold bottom of the long bib up to form a pouch – great for catching any spillages!

Little Man is rather pleased too – he does enjoy a nice chat with his new animal friends…

Like what you see?

Here are all the website links and Twitter accounts of everyone who contributed towards making my Little Man’s bedroom amazing!!

Homebase can be found @Homebase_UK
Jomoval can be found @Jomoval
Homeplates
Stuck On You can be found @StuckOnYouTweet
Just Bunting can be found @JustBunting
Natural Mat can be for @NaturalMat
Alphabet Gallery
The Gro Company can be found @TheGroCompany
Toys R Us can be found @ToysRUs
Inch Blue can be found @InchBlue
Mam
Favours From Us
Jaz Kids can be found @JazKidsClothing
Close Parent Ltd can be @CloseParent