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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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Review: Actimel Smoothies

Posted by SussexMummy | Posted in Foodie, Product Reviews | Posted on 16-10-2013

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I’ve always liked the idea of Actimel. Little pots of drink which contain all this good stuff to keep your digestive system in order. Like most people I tend to only drink the one flavour when I do buy them – Strawberry – but when I finish the bottle I often think “Is that it?”. I always wished they were a bit bigger. It was a bit like having one mouthful of a really delicious milkshake and then not getting to have anymore. It never dawned on me that you could actually do other stuff with them.
Actimel launched a brand new flavour – Blackcurrant – recently and a while ago they sent me some to test out, as well as some recipe cards for smoothies, and a rather nice smoothie maker to make my creations in. The Actimel alone was pretty tasty – still think I’m a Strawberry girl at heart though – but I was keen to try a smoothie. Using one of the recipe cards I made a Blackcurrant, Banana and Apple Smoothie. Simple enough – a pot of Blackcurrant Actimel, 120g Blackcurrants, 1 ripe banana and 1 cored and chopped apple. This was all popped into the smoothie maker and whizzed up till it was all nicely combined. This recipe makes one delicious serving – a perfect breakfast accompaniment or morning snack. It was quite zingy – as you’d expect with fresh blackcurrants – but it was REALLY nice and a brilliant way of using Actimel instead of just that usual single mouthful.

I am really impressed with the idea of making smoothies from my Actimel. I think it will certainly encourage me to buy them more in the future and whizz them up with fruits of my choice. You don’t really need recipes to make smoothies, you can just throw in whatever you fancy. I can see me trying a lot of the other Actimel flavours too – who knew there were so many of them – and making tasty smoothies for all the family.

If you head on over to the Actimel website you’ll even find a small number of recipes for other things to do with your Actimel, from cheesecakes and salad dressings, to soups and even curry. A more versatile little pot than I gave it credit for it seems.

Lunchbox Fillers

Posted by SussexMummy | Posted in Product Reviews | Posted on 02-09-2012

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As well as making sure your child has the right uniform and equipment for school, if you are providing a packed lunch, you want to make sure they have the right food to keep them going during the day. Healthy school meals is a long standing discussion, but with a packed lunch you know precisely what your child is getting. Here are a few things that I think would make a great addition.

My Pocket Buddy
Not a food or drink but an important lunch box addition all the same, the My Pocket Buddy alcohol-free hand sanitiser should find its way into every lunch box. The 8ml pen style spray makes it easy to slip into their lunch box – or pencil case or bag – to make sure their hands are clean before and after eating. The spray is made from pure and natural ingredients, so is chemical free and much kinder to skin than normal alcohol hand washes. The spray delivers just enough to wash their hands quickly and its leaves them feeling fresh and dry and ready for the rest of their day. We all know children aren’t the cleanest of creatures, so a My Pocket Buddy should be the first thing you pop in to their lunch box each day.

MU Cheddar Sticks
Made from 100% cheddar and with each stick being equivalent to a glass of milk a Mu Cheddar Stick is a handy and tasty way to get calcium into your children. Each stick is individually wrapped and suitable for vegetarians. You can also get Mu 100% Cheddar Patz which  are discs of cheese ideal for using in sandwiches or on homemade pizzas. These are a great way to get children involved in food preparation – I even managed to get Little Man to help me put a few patz on our pizza last week, and it tasted great. You can find the full Mu Cheese range on their website.

Happy Monkey Smoothies
If getting fruit into your child is becoming something of a battle smoothies might be the best option. These tasty smoothies from Happy Monkey are perfect for lunchboxes. Available in two delicious flavours – Strawberry & Banana and Orange & Mango – the smoothies contain one full portion of fruit and are made from 100% pure fruit. Best served cold straight from the fridge, they keep their cool out of the fridge for up to 12 hours making them a great addition to your child’s lunchbox. Little Man is a fruit-a-holic and getting fruit into him is never a problem, but we tried him out on these and he loved them. Anything with a straw is generally a winner with him, but he was a big fan of these and finished them in one before asking for “More?” pretty much straight away! Happy Monkey Smoothies are available from most supermarkets, and to find your nearest stockist check out their website, where you’ll also find a great range of games to keep your child entertained!