Our house is full of minion fans .
We absolutely love the Fun little characters from Despicable Me.
When the new movie was released this year we were so excited to get to see it and the mischievous minions once again.
This time the story takes a quite emotional role where Gru is fired and instead of returning to a life of crime he decides to retire and travels to Freedonia to meet his long lost twin brother for the very first time where they find they are very much opposites but have an uneasy alliance to battle with in the form of an 80's child star who wants to take revenge on the world .
We love the movie so much that we have bought the movie for our nephews Christmas present being that it is so funny and irresponsibly silly.
As you may already know , we are also a family that loves Ready Brek and when we found out that They were bringing out my sons favourite cereal themed all around Despicable Me 3 , we just had to get a few boxes.
We were really surprised to see a lot going on in design of the boxes.
I initially thought they would just add a picture of the characters to the cover but on closer inspection , we found there were puzzles and also the opportunity to win some amazing prizes every hour with Weetabix.
By adding a code which can be found in each box of Weetabix , there are prizes to be won every single hour ranging from Night mission goggles, remote controlled drones and even and virtual reality viewers.
Unfortunately we put both codes into the site generator and were not lucky winners to my sons disappointment but we did enjoy the puzzle on the box .and the cereal is always amazing .
We all love Ready Brek and we are finding more and more ways to enjoy the natural goodness that gives the children long lasting energy throughout the day .
Chocolate chip Ready Brek muffins with a chocolate cream cheese frosting
Our latest love are our homemade Ready brek snow angel Muffins.
These were so simple to make , we literally just added all the following ingredients to a bowl and mixed together to form a smooth like mixture.
Once all mixed, we place the mixture equally between 12 cases and put into the preheated over at 170c for 25 to 30 minutes or until golden and ready.
We left to cool while preparing our chocolate cream cheese frosting , here are our instructions (optional of course ) -
We cut out the tops of all of the cupcakes , leaving a hole in each one where we could place a nice portion of our special cream frosting.
We then cut the tops removed into half , added them on top of the frosting (so they look like angel wings as my children call them), before dusting them with icing sugar to finish.
It was our first attempt at making muffins but wow they were amazing and the children loved joining in and doing it by themselves (with a little adult help for the dangerous bits of course).
There are so many things you can do with Ready brek , it really is not just used for breakfast. We also gave the Ready brek flapjack a try , not as pretty to look at but just as tasty and definitely went down a real treat in our house.
If you want to give the cereal a try , it is available from most stores for just £2 a box . It goes a long way too , it lasts us a while and we have 10 in our home . My children have been eating this since they were weaning as babies.
Not only are Despicable Me 3 causing mayhem in our kitchen but my daughter has also found there is a collectors tin to play with now too.
Despicable Me 3 Mineez Figures are out and ready to be collected. In the collectors tin you get two supplied to get you started , one Exclusive Clive the Robot and another mystery one .
You get a collectors guide leaflet to show you all the ones you can collect in the edition and of course the fantastic tin which will hold over 40 Mineez figures.
There are so many awesome toys they've brought out , I just know there is going to be a few requests for under the tree this year.
What makes you Ready with Ready Brek ?
Each Year We even put some aside for the reindeer coming , every year we add some glitter to the mix of smooth oats and place them in individual bags with a little note to Santa and the reindeer on each and we sprinkle it on our doorstep so the children believe it gives them magic powers to help them fly home safely through the sky on Christmas eve.
We do the same thing every year , usually pop to the local display which tends to be really drab and spend that long standing about freezing that by time the fireworks have gone of , everyone's too cold and moody to enjoy the evening. The amount of time I have gone to the displays and waited forever to get in, spent a while looking for the perfect stop to stand , spent a fortune for the tickets to get in and park up and it has lasted all but 3 whole minutes for it to be all over and done with .
Last year we bought our own. My husband is such a child when it comes to big fireworks and the louder the better for him .It is not the first time, we have a farm close by that sells them all year round and so we know from experience that they are excellent and always entertain the kids, it is a great idea for those who are not so keen on the loud , big blasting ones.
We made a party of it last year. We made a huge buffet , invited friends and family around and lit the fire bin in the garden where we all stood around it getting warm while watching the fireworks been set of .
It was all fun and games until the tidying side of it had to be done , just exhausting to even think about doing again anytime soon , especially as we've had quite a few party events lately.
This year , I warned m husband not to buy any fireworks. I neither wanted him to see any of nor did I fancy going to an event that we would have normally for a measly 3 minute show .
Instead I searched for something new and exciting .
I wanted something to keep us busy for the full day. something that would be enjoyed by all the family and something that was not just a few fireworks been set of before bed.
The Scunthorpe Banger /unlimiteds championship firework display
We have never even heard of this before , and I certainly had never visited one . My husband and the boys especially love anything car related especially when it includes a big smash up too .
Breaking things and rebuilding things has always interested our household for sure, just not on this level.
The show started at 4pm but we had a full 2 hour drive to make first before we got there travelling all the way from Durham so we made sure we had everything needed, wrapped up warm, took spare clothes, blankets, a big pack up full of treats and foods to eat while there.
We really did not know what to expect , I certainly had never been to a race track before and with it being last minute organised , we had no time to check and see what was there so ensured we had it all before we left just in case.
Usually it would cost us nearly or close to £100+ for any admittance into any event , because there is 10 of us but surprisingly this was only £12 for adults and £5 for teens, younger children were free so we only payed £32 for the day .
We payed at the gate and parking was free .
The atmosphere when we arrived was instantly amazing.
Everyone was laughing and smiling, all excited to see the races and the smell of fuel from the raging engines made it all the more intensified.
I just got goosebumps at the sound of the revving motors and the sounds of skidding tyres , it really was an amazing feeling to arrive to .
We had been driving and travelling for a few hours and so by the time we got there we were all starving and needing toilet breaks so made it our first protocol to get ready for the show .
We made sandwiches, lots of tuna pasta and spicy fajita chicken pasta salad, our little man was mostly impressed with his banana Angel delight we made also , but with plenty snacks and drinks we were set .
We were actually really excited , there were in fact lots of things there for keeping everyone happy and entertained.
We stayed clear of the flashy toys on sale and I had to drag my husband away form the Motorsport stall that sold full all in one racing suits for the kids, but there was a bar for beers and most importantly for us somewhere to grab a hot cup of tea and some water . They also sold food and the prices were brilliant for an even the size it was, we could have easily got everyone food there but trying to save as much as we can at the moment we were being good and we actually really did enjoy our pack up.
As we found our final spot to stay in for the evening , we watched the cars prepare for their starting races and although I knew seeing vehicles and machines for the boys would be fun and enjoying , I never in this world imagined to see my 11 and 13 year old daughters squealing at the show in full blown excitement. They enjoyed it so much that the eldest begged to do it as a full time job afterwards with my prompt answer to hr to say as a hobby maybe only .
It did get rather nippy , but as you can see we're still all smiling form ear to ear , little Joshua is fist pumping the air in elation and anticipation. Plenty of gloves and hats and snuggling up close when the races started made it all the warmer.
We had the best day ever, it really was an immensely fun experience and especially something we would do again , we've actually looked into it and found there is one closer to us so we are going to check that one out too. We loved watching the cars race and at the end of all the races they done one final race which was the main event that we had been waiting for .
All different sets of cars and vehicles took to teams and basically smashed into each other , it was basically last man standing won and we loved it .
It was every man for himself out there and we were routing for the vehicle that we videoed above , the Toyota Lucida , just like the one we had a few years back . It reminded us of the great days we took out in it but we obviously never drove it the way they did , it made us proud and won the trophy just as we had hoped .
After the amazing finale smash up , we awaited for the machines to pick all the remains up and take them back to their owners, like crumpled pieces of metal awaiting to be fixed and drove again for another show later on before the huge firework display started.
I recorded the whole thing , the whole 11 minutes of amazing sparks and colours lighting the sky up to end our journey to Scunthorpe.
It really did surprise us, and was far from the 3 minute sparks we expected .
We woke up on Friday the actual day of Bonfire night and were still very tired but making the most of it be decided to make some delicious foods to celebrate the event . Earlier on Kaiden had decided to make his very own Catherine wheel pizza. It was lovely and an idea we took fromTwinkl while we were working on our new reading book'Sparks in the Sky'.
Dad also took to the Kitchen , I know it was a huge shock for me to, but I had been telling him how I really needed something sweet to snuggle up to with a movie for our late night movie and so he decided to make me this massive homemade Victoria sponge with homemade doughnuts filled with strawberries and fresh whipped cream, drizzled in chocolate and dusted in icing.
I have to admit i was in heaven.
Having a new book sent fromTwinkl , we took to reading it and printed the optional worksheets which were shared in the book.
I absolutely love the idea that you can read a book and there been work all about that book there ready for you to complete, it makes my lesson planning all that more easier and it had a few different ability levels to work with .
With work ranging from sorting senses and word searches. reading comprehensions , there were also great activities such as game boards and Plasticine fun . All of which included everything that was from the Sparks in the Sky book from Twinkl Original .
We had a fantastic experience and look forward to our next one .
Have you ever took to the races, was it one like this ?
Let me know in the comments below.
Halloween is definitely the start of my favorite part of the year , it is the lead up to Bonfire night and my birthday and of course Christmas , so we always start to get little excited come the end of October.
Every year we have our own little party.
We decorate the house , make gruesome food and design home friendly frightful games , and on the weekend closest to Halloween, we have our special Hallows Party, just us and the kids.
This year , things have been on a tight budget for us.
We gave the kids a budget of just £50 to decorate the house , the table setting and we even bought a door mat for just £1 too and was surprised when we ended up with so much from Poundworld that the house looked wonderful .
From Tablecloths to hanging Trick Treat decorations ,huge wall murals and even haunted cake stands , the party was looking amazing , it just needed a few extra personal touches.
I have not taken the kids trick or treating for a couple of years now, I kind of stopped doing it after a spell of cold winter nights , blistering frost and poorly children getting too cold after school that it just was not fun anymore so this year we took the idea of 'You've been booed?' from Happiness Is Homemade .
A fantastic idea where you place a sign on two of your neighbors doors with a sweet (treat ) and they then pass it to two more neighbours or friends which I have never seen before but made me think a little more differently about the experience , especially suited for the younger children who like to celebrate , and more than that made the whole experience more safe .
We went a little further due to the fact there are only 2 children in our small cul de sac street and made three and filled a Halloween treat bag with Halloween themed sweets and trick spiders and a skull trinket. We also made Halloween bookmarks, added a little book we picked up out and about and printed of some colouring , puzzle and craft pages to keep them entertained .
Not just for the treaters but we also made these into some fun activities to keep the children busy at home to.
On the Friday , our local community center held their party and as always , my children like to dress up and with them getting a little bigger now , getting a bit bored of the same outfits, we decided to make our own this year to use up old clothes and save a few pennies.
My girls still had their flower girl dresses from our wedding years back , there were a few different sizes so luckily we had two that were able ot be used and so we decided to decorate them ourselves. Again we printed of templates and cut them onto foam sheets, had them sewn on to the dress and added some grey mesh fabric as well as some old Halloween themed cloth we had lying about and we were so impressed with the end results , I really don't know why I had not done I before.
With a little tissue paper and PVA glue for the wounds and some face paints to bring it all together they both looked fantastic .
We went to the party, it was fantastic and because their dad was working we met him there and enjoyed hot-dogs and homemade cakes and toffee apples.
The main event for us is always our own party we decide to hold and so after printing of lots of banners and buying a few essentials , we decided to make a rather frightful feast .
My neighbour does not celebrate Halloween but she loves to send us homemade cupcakes over which she adds spooky themed sweets onto and so we always make our theme around these.
This year we decided t make a gravestone trifle instead of a cake and it went down even better than we had hoped.
What could be better than jelly, angel delight flavours mixed and lots of fresh whipped cream ?
We had the children making grave stone biscuits earlier on as an extra activity for them and when it was all added together it looked fantastic.
Seeing so many great ideas on the web inspired me to try something new and so we also bought some ready to roll puff pastry and let the children make their own mummy sausage rolls, I have to admit these tasted amazing and even surprised me how well they turned out , we even added a little passata to give it that extra flavour.
We based all of our food around Halloween and even made more treats such as Bogeyman's Bogeys (popcorn covered in green icing sugar ), witches hats (pizza cut into triangles), tongue sandwiches (ham and tomato ketchup sandwiches), teeth (yogurt covered fruits), and so many more things.
Our little pumpkin absolutely loved his Gooey brained spiders they made (Jaffa cakes with sugar strand laces and chocolate buttons to decorate).
We always do so much its usually hard to share it all but not just the food was frightful, you should have seen our Slow cooked Hot chocolate .
We literally made most things and anything possible such as the photo props which we just printed and laminated.
We had so many different games to play throughout the day and night.
Of course the classic , bobbing apples in the sink with a frozen hand we made with a glove filled with water, add some red jelly or tomato ketchup to the water with the odd floating spider and they love it .
This was a new one for us ,We all love pin the tail but we needed a more appropriate theme so came up with the idea of making a web made of wool which we had spare and printed a spider , added it to some wool t replicate the web and played pin the spider on its web.
The younger ones loved this especially.
We placed point markers on plastic cups and threw little spiders in , another great game to get those motor skills working .
We printed our some bingo grids and loved matching our spooks to the bingo sheets.
For each bingo shouted they got a treat.
We did play so many more games.
Our favourite had to be the musical ghouls game.
We filled black and orange balloons with sweets, spiders and fangs and when the music stopped they had to choose one balloon and pop it with their bottom, it was very fun and a great laugh to watch especially. Everyone's a winner every time the music stops so no twisting kids complaining they never won anything .
We had a fun filled packed day, baking , crafting, games and so much more . We never finished until around 9pm to which we then sat and wached 'The nightmare before Christmas' movie, our favourite. Honestly ,my children know all the words and sing along to all the songs .
On the Sunday , Our local Intu shopping center at Gateshead was hosting a few different things for the children to enjoy . We had already had such a busy weekend so another day would not hurt, after all we had not spent much at all with all the savings we had made , so what better way to unwind than to go for a little window shopping in the run up to Christmas.
There an actual trick of treat event where the children were given treat bags , they had to look for pumpkin stickers that retailers and restaurant had placed in the windows and if they went inside the shop , the shop would give them a treat. This consisted of sweets and lots of them , one of the restaurants in the food court even handed out special chocolate cookies which were delicious .
In house of Fraser , we even had all the children's faces painted all for free and even more added sweets for their treat bags. Joshua decided on a paw patrol ,while his brother chose a scary zombie .
We all had a wonderful day. I loved that they had thought about the new and inventive ideas to keep little ones entertained while us adults shopped. We loved seeing their little faces light up each time they saw a new window sticker and it was a great family bonding day .
On Monday night , after a good night sleep we went to our regular church where although they do not celebrate Halloween , we spent our time away from the dark side of things , making some wonderful cakes, decorating some pretty pictures and making some crafts that spoke and taught us about stories of the bible . It was nice to have the children still have the church included in their lives throughout this week , I think its an important addition to our lives lately I try to keep encouraged.
Because the weather was not so cold during the day on Halloween on the Tuesday and the children are home educated so this year had no excuses for having to wait til night time, we were able to take them earlier on in the day , less frightening, less cold and more safe .
They loved it and got quite a large amount too which we never expected .
Usually we would carve out pumpkins on the up running to Halloween , this year we left it a little late and actually done this on Halloween Day itself .
This time however we decided to decorate them rather than carve them . This was more for the idea that we could use the pumpkins after we had used them for decoration for the trick or treaters to make something tasty, such as soup or curry.
My favourite was the Starry night and flying witch , but I also loved the sequins toppers too , so fun and so easy and a wonderful wsy to get creative, they don't have to look scary to be in the theme .
To end the night we grabbed some bubbles witch we made stickers naming them Orbs for and pretended to have a Seyonce .
The children all sat in a circle , we told scary tales and told them to close their eyes, blew the bubbles and when they opened their eyes they saw the spirits floating by (bubbles ). They were fascinated and it finished of the Halloween week perfectly.
Sharing Halloween traditions is something I love to with my children just like my mum did with me .
I remember every year the old lady next door would send me a big bag of pear drops to ensure I would not go knocking on her door later on, my mam would allow me to invite one special friend and she would make us a fantastic Halloween themed tea party before sitting down to watch The Worse witch or Hocus Pocus . I remember the chocolate Frijj milkshake she would place in a bowl and call is poop (to put it nicely ). Makes me giggle every time I remember it but its those moments I want my children to have and grow up remembering .
Do you have traditions you keep for Halloween, maybe your making new ones?
Let me know in the comments below.
Our youngest son has just turned 2, yes 2 whole years since I held my youngest baby for the first time and I was actually a little emotional that it was going to be his 2nd birthday , meaning no more babies in our home , for the first time in 15 years we were now a baby free zone and our youngest had finally reached toddler years.
Although sad for us mums , we all know its also a time to celebrate , and I love nothing more than organizing parties for our children.
We as a large family of 10 never have a lot of money to splash on fancy parties and organisations that come and do it all for you , not even able to buy the decorations in and hang them ourselves so I have come to learning that as long as you have paper and a printer (which we have lots of Eco friendly , refill inks for), we can always be assured the party will look good as well as being fun .
Joshua is an absolute Paw Patrol fan , he loves watching it and playing role of one of the pups on a daily basis s we knew it was the right choice to chose the theme .
All I had to do was find free printable pages available online and download the banners and party decorations , games and ideas and get to work.
I literally bought his presents, the wrapping paper a table cloth and some balloons and the rest we printed of .
Joshua woke up to find he had some wonderful presents .
We even brought the old dog cage out from the loft , filled it with pup teddy bears and one wrapped and made it into a puppy adoption center .
He thought it was wonderful , he jumped straight inside and played pup and opened his first present , his very First and own Paw patrol Chase.
I found some wonderful ideas for games and printed of things such as pin the badge on Skye poster, laminated the badge and made some paw patrol masks which we also laminated and covered the eyes to use for our blindfold, he loved it .
In one corner of the sitting room, we hung hula hoops and made paper airplanes , just like Skye from Paw patrol, we flew them through the targets .
There was a lot of games available , we had , Pup Pup Boogie, a game where children spun the curser on a wheel (also printed) , which then give them an instruction on which dance move they had to do , a little like musical statues . We found this and many other things we used on Nickelodeon .
There were so many colouring and activity sheets to do to keep him busy while I prepared for the Tea party . In fact so many I could not do them all but spent a whole week organizing the few bits I was using . All those free printables really did make the party what it was , it looked fantastic .
The children even made their own certificated for their adoptions and invitations for themselves to the party on the run up to it so they had some great fun .
Even down to making party hats and then making pompoms to add on the top , little 3D cubes and vehicles, badges, food labels and cake banners , we made everything , even little hot dog wraps and doggy bags ( or boxes as we made them into ) .
All the food had a theme too of course. There were chicken drumsticks named dug up bones, chocolate rolls named poop rolls (I know, sounds gross , but the kids love it ), we had Rubble Quiche and dog biscuits and even Pupperoni Pizza and Hot Dogs of course.
It looked wonderful all put together and Joshua's eyes really did light up when he saw it .
We waited fro his daddy to come home before we had our Tea party though , Joshua loves his daddy , but he had been working so missed the day, we obviously waited to sing happy birthday and cut his special cake with him, he was so sad he had missed the rest of the day.
He had a wonderful Paw Patrol birthday , If it was not for the wonderful ideas I found on Nickelodeon , I know it would not have been so Special, Hopefully Joshua will get some more Paw Patrol toys or presents from Santa , but for now he is just enjoying still playing pup roles , crawling around n all fours pretending to be his favorite characters from his favorite show Paw Patrol .
With the new release of the much loved Fantasy and Science Fiction film 'Justice League' being released this November , there is no surprise that there is also going to be a batch of toys available , especially on the run up to Christmas .
Makes perfect timing for many little ones to get their Christmas lists in with all their wishes and wants to Santa.
I have 6 children of all varied ages and sexes that love Justice League so I knew this would be a hit when it arrived through our Letterbox .
This is the 'Stretch mini , Justice League - Superman'.
The Stretch mini Superman is aimed for ages 5+ and costs just £12.99 .
It is available from Character-online.com as well as other leading toy stores and retailers and is a handy 7 inches of stretch power.
My two youngest boys especially love the theme of Superman so when this came through the down , needless to say there were a few squabbles but eventually they decided to take turns and actually play together as the stretch needed for this believe it or not is just as fun with two people pushing its limits than it is with just the one set of hands.
The fantastic thing about Stretch and his companion Stretch's is that you can pull, twist and stretch him and he will always return to his normal self in seconds.
No matter how much you play with him , no matter how hard or far you pull him , he will always go back to himself and his original size.
Stretch his arms and legs and torso and he will prove to you how super strong he really is. He has a fully stretchable figure .
There is not just Superman available but they have also released Flash and also Batman another of the favorites in this house.
We tested the toy to see what would happen when played with and having all these children to contend with it had its testing power pushed.
In honesty though it survived the stretch and twists and tie in knots but on looking at the Figure closely after just 15 minutes play, we released that the print on the figure had almost rubbed of leaving just a messy looking print , peeling and not so new looking as it had been before the play started.
This did not effect the main purpose of the toy though. The children still carried on playing but my younger son was a little disappointed that the print had been ruined as he likes to keep his toys new looking .
We also noticed that if you stretch the figure , the belt that was around Superman's waist , (a plastic ring which in my opinion should have been left of and printed the same as the rest of his outfit ), was easily able to come away from the figure by the figure being stretched so that the belt could fall over the feet of Superman.
For us the figure seemed a little disappointing in regards to the look of it after play but still fun and very much a durable item to have around a heavy handed child.
Superman comes with a cape and so to make sure it looked like Superman , they also ensured he came with his big red cape to finish the full look of .
Me and my son enjoyed playing with this together and it really is a great way to encourage your child to do a little exercise and strength testing in your own home .
This was super fun and super stretchy.
Do you remember the original Mr Stretch, who would you choose now to stretch to the limits?
Let me know in the comments below .
*We were not paid for this review , all opinions are honest and based on our own experiences and thoughts.