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Remember Dial-Up Internet?

Kids, including mine, were invited by BT to hear dial up internet for the first time. What was the norm to us (remember sharing the phone line?) is so foreign to them. What do you mean I have to wait to get on line?! Their responses are so cute!

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SockShop Socks

I’ll be honest, when I was first told about SockShop’s plain bamboo socks with gentle grip and hand linked toes being a hit with parents, I didn’t see what the fuss was all about.

But then I remembered when my son was younger and the furore he’d create over his socks! Yes, socks. He used to hate the imprint the opening of the sock would leave on his lower calf and he’d complain about the feeling of the seams at the top of toes.

The jury is still out on whether it was all made up or if it was just him being a terrible two year old.


Either way, the SockShop has a range of gentle grip, hand linked toe socks which means no pain on little legs and no seams to run against small toe joints. They are also made from bamboo – the must have fibre for early friendly mamas. Why you ask?

Well – bamboo is 100% naturally grown, without assistance from man and it is 100% sustainable and biodegradable.

Bamboo is almost four times more absorbent than cotton, wicking moisture away from the skin which then evaporates, keeping you naturally drier and more comfortable.

Socks made from bamboo have particular natural anti-bacterial functions, bacteriostasis and deodorization value. Its test results show over 70% of bacteria perished when incubated on bamboo fibre. Bamboo allows socks to help keep feet fresher for longer and healthier as the fabric naturally stops bacteria from spreading.

Bamboo is also a great choice for sensitive or allergy prone skin, made from fibres that are round and smoother than other fabrics causing less irritation. Who knew?

We are all sold on bamboo now and whatever your shoe size or fabric preference, even if your feet go up to an adult 14, SockShop is home to the world’s largest collection of socks so you’re sure to find what you need there.

*PR sample*

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belVita Breakfast Soft Bakes

Having reviewed belVita previously (here) I have to say my family much prefers this new format! In fact two boxes only lasted three days!

belVita Breakfast Soft Bakes are soft and chewy, and although they still taste like a breakfast bar, they are much kinder on the teeth! They are available in three varieties: Golden Grain, Red Berries or Chocolate Chips. We tried Golden Grain and Red Berries with Golden Grain being the clear favourite.

Bellevita soft bakes

Each box contains five individually wrapped portions making them perfect for breakfast on the go. They are made with five whole grains and rich in cereals, offering a great source of fibre, vitamins B6, magnesium and iron.

Mondelez, the makers of belVita Soft Bakes said they developed new belVita Soft Bakes because people wanted a delicious on-the-go breakfast that is both tasty and nutritious. Soft Bakes are a new form of belVita that has been created to suit customer demands for a softer start to the day.

belVita’s Soft Bakes Bakery has been touring the UK for seven weeks from 7 September. Make sure you keep an eye out, for your chance to enjoy free samples of the new softer range.

belVita Breakfast Soft Bakes Red Berries and Golden Grain are available in ASDA, Sainsbury’s, Morrisons and Tesco at approximately £2.79. belVita Breakfast Soft Bakes Choc Chip are available exclusively at Tesco until January 2016.

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Korres Mediterranean Trio Gift Set

I received a scary email last week – only 100 days until Christmas. Where has 2015 gone?!

With that in mind, all the gift guide suggestions are starting to trickle through. I usually ignore them but as a fan of natural beauty brand Korres, I thought I’d highlight this one. Korres is a Greek skincare brand with roots in Athens’ first ever homeopathic pharmacy. They use their extensive scientific resources for the development of effective and safe natural and certified organic skin and hair care range. I love their products and use them on the entire family.

The Mediterranean trio collection has delicious scents of figs, bergamot and pears. The box contains a 250 ml basil lemon shower gel, 200 ml bergamot & pear body milk and 125 ml fig body butter.


Korres Mediterranean Trio Gift Set has a RRP of £26.00 and will be available to buy online from from 1st October. Bookmark this page, you’ll thank me in December!

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McDonald’s Happy Readers x Roald Dahl

It doesn’t matter how old you are – 5 or 50 – your childhood wasn’t complete without reading at least five Roald Dahl books. The movies, wonderful though they were, don’t count!

Dahl was an author like no other – he knew how to enthral kids with the weird and wonderful and sometimes the down right disgusting. His were books you read, and read, and read until you almost knew them verbatim. I had the box set as a child; my children have the box set as will theirs most likely.

From today, to mark the start of the partnership between McDonald’s Happy Readers, the National Literacy Trust, Penguin Random House Children’s UK and the Roald Dahl Literary Estate, 14 million books featuring extracts from Roald Dahl’s most popular books will be distributed as part of McDonald’s Roald Dahl Happy Meals, making the wonderful world of Roald Dahl accessible to millions of children in the UK.

McDonald's Happy Readers Roald Dahl

Look at my baby as a scary fox! Photo credit: David Parry/PA Wire


McDonald’s Happy Readers campaign was created to put more books into the hands of families, with recent research from the National Literacy Trust showing that only half of children enjoy reading and almost one in seven don’t have a book of their own. My sister in law is a head teacher and told me, yes in London, that on one World Book Day when kids were asked to bring a book from home into school, some brought the Argos catalogue, as that’s the only ‘book’ they have at home. How sad!

There are eight specially created Roald Dahl books being featured in the Happy Meal. Each book contains extracts from two Roald Dahl books plus brand-new activities.

• Roald Dahl’s Extraordinary Friends (featuring The Giraffe and the Pelly and Me and The BFG)
• Roald Dahl’s Fantastic Families – (featuring Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Fantastic Mr Fox)
• Roald Dahl’s Magical Mischief – (featuring George’s Marvellous Medicine and Matilda)
• Roald Dahl’s Secret Plans – (featuring Esio Trot and The Twits)
• Roald Dahl’s Curious Characters – (featuring The BFG and James and the Giant Peach)
• Roald Dahl’s Beastly Creatures – (featuring The Witches and The Enormous Crocodile)
• Roald Dahl’s Incredible Inventions – (featuring Charlie and The Chocolate Factory and George’s Marvellous Medicine)
• Roald Dahl’s Clever Tricks – (featuring The Twits and Matilda)

McDonald's Happy Readers Roald Dahl

My two with with Nick Stewart-Smith. Photo credit: David Parry/PA Wire

From tomorrow (Wednesday 23rd) you can also download a clever app (iOS and Android) to help you enjoy Dahl’s books in a new way. Specially designed to bring the books to life, the app’s voice activated features helps kids delve deep into the world of the book they’re reading as certain words activate dramatic noises and animations. For example, you can hear the sound of ingredients being added as George brews his Marvellous Medicine and you can also see the screen fill with liquid. The kids were enthralled! Whether you have one, all or none of the books, the app contains stand-alone fun like puzzles and dot-to-dots. Simply visit the App Store and search Happy Studio.

If you don’t have kids, then get these for a friend’s or relative’s. I love when people give my kids books! Also share these top tips from National Literacy Trust for reading with children:

  • Bring the story to life by using different voices for the characters. Try out a greedy, gravelly tone for the Enormous Crocodile or a wise and whispery voice for the grandmother.
  • Make your child the author! Stop at exciting moments in the story and ask your child to invent what happens next.
  • Make reading with your child a special time for you both every day.
  • Children of all ages love to hear stories read aloud. Don’t stop reading to your children just because they can read by themselves.
  • Let your child help choose the books that you’ll read together. If the subject excites your child, the story will hold their interest better.

You’ve got six weeks from today to collect the books while the App (from App Store) is available from tomorrow.

What’s your favourite Dahl book?

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