Double the Monkey Business

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Maurice the Unbeastly – Book Review

This week the boys and I have been reading a new book by Amy Dixon, Maurice the Unbeastly. Premise –…

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Num Noms Surprise in a Jar: What would you do?

Num Noms Surprise in a Jar: What would you do?

Last week after a long day at school, the boys were super excited to come home to a Num Noms Surprise in a Jar!

They were totally intrigued by the jar which held a cuddly toy inside.  Desperate to break the little guy out, the boys wasted no time in opening the jar.  The sweet smell of watermelon is the first thing that hits you, as the cuddly toy within is scented.  It is a really fab idea and the boys loved that the scent filled their bedroom.

The little guy is really easy to get out and my five-year-old twins had no problem removing him from his jar.

The Num Noms is cute and so soft to cuddle.  I am also pleasantly surprised that the smell is still there a week later!

These Num Noms in a jar would make a brilliant birthday pressie, so I will be stocking up on them and adding them to my birthday pressie box!  They would make a great stocking filler as well.


So when we were sent this to review, we were set a challenge.  What would we do with the reusable jar?

The boys came up with loads of ideas of what we could store in there; lego, crayons and playmobil to name but a few.

There is also a coin slot at the side, which means it could be used as a money box.  I thought it would be really fun to decorate the jar.

However, the boys decided to use it as storage for some of the craft things they received for their birthday.  These were all lying lose at the bottom of our craft box, so I was very much in favour of this idea!

Num Noms Surprise in a jar

Where can you buy Num Noms Surprise in a Jar?

They are really easy to pick up and you can look out for them at Toys R Us, Argos, Tesco, Smyths Toy Superstore and The Entertainer.  They are reasonably priced at £9.99.  There are six different num noms / scents, so the boys are now on a mission to collect them all.





Feeling like Cinderella with Hotter Shoes…

Feeling like Cinderella with Hotter Shoes…

After speaking to the lovely ladies from Hotter shoes at the Blogon Conference last week, I was chuffed to be then invited to one of their blogger events this week!

I was hugely excited about this, as I had caught a glimpse of some of the boots they had on offer at the conference and had already fallen in love!

When I walked into the Romford store, I was greeted by the super helpful staff.  I had spoken to Jenny a few times over the last week and she was just as friendly in real life.  In fact all the staff couldn’t do enough for the customers.

Hotter Shoes Romford

The Romford store

The team had laid out a little spread for anyone popping into the store that week which was a lovely extra touch.

Cinderella and Prince Charming

I was taken aback though to then meet Prince Charming and I was then asked to sit on the throne to have my feet measured.  This was a really fun touch, with the idea being they were looking to find the perfect ‘Cinderella’ fit for each customer.

It has been years since I had my feet measured.  So long in fact that I can’t actually remember getting them measured at all in my adult life! It was a good thing to, as it turns out my feet are half a size bigger than I thought!  I always insisted that my feet got bigger when I was pregnant with the boys.  However, the hubby has never believed me.  He thought it was a clever ruse to buy more shoes – not something I would ever do of course (honest!).

We then got to the fun part and I tried on various styles of boots.  With winter coming in I really need sturdy and warm boots for the school run!

The staff were incredibly helpful.

When I mentioned to Customer Advisor Kerry that I usually stick to black the ladies persuaded me to try something a little different.  Unsure I decided to try on some different colours as well as black, pretty sure I would walk away with my usual black!  In the end I tried on a pair of Mystery boots (black), Pixie boots (gunmetal), Lotty boots (tan) and Whisper boots (tan).

As you have probably worked out the ladies were correct, I tried on a pair of the tan Whisper ankle boots and fell in love!  I still had to fight with my usual instinct to not pick the black though! In the end, I decided to go for it.  I don’t regret it for a minute.  I have worn them constantly since I took them home!

The inside of the boot is faux fur lined, so they look smart on the outside but feel like slippers on the inside. A stroke of genius if you ask me.

The perfect attire for the school run!

The soles of the boots are great too; sturdy and with a good grip.  Perfect for when it gets a little icy outside.

What I really love about these boots are the versatility of what I can wear them with.  They look great with trousers, leggings and skirts.  So they really will go with most things in my wardrobe.

I really think Hotter shoes will be my go-to shops for any boots in future.  They had a great range for all ages.  All smart, stylish and – best of all – comfy!


If you are desperately in need to refresh your winter foot attire then this is the perfect time to check out Hotter Shoes.  They currently have a fabulous offer on until 11th October: BUY ONE GET ONE 50% OFF!!!


To find a store near you, click here: STORE LOCATOR

To find out more about Hotter Shoes you can find them here:







Surviving my first Blogon conference…..

Surviving my first Blogon conference…..

Last week I attended my first ever blog conference, Blogon Xmas! There are a few reasons I have not been to one before. The main one being that I have been living in Germany until very recently. But, if I am entirely honest, I didn’t know there was such a thing as a blog conference until last year.

Blind Date

On the Saturday, despite feeling completely overwhelmed, I set off on the big journey to the conference. I picked up Gemma from Life is Knutts from a service station on the way.  Despite having chatted and done some blogging ventures together we had never met.  We had joked about it being a blind date and I was very thankful to find she is every bit as lovely in real life as she is online! Phew!

Eventually we made it to our hotel, after getting lost around the busy city streets of Manchester .  We did a quick turnaround and went out for dinner.  We went to a great – but noisy! – Caribbean restaurant and it was lovely to meet Laura from Five Little Doves, Laura from Dear Bear and Beany, Josie from The Whimsical Adventures of a Not So Supermum, Debbie from My Random Musings, Bridget from Birdie by the Sea and Clare from Mudpie Fridays.

I welcomed going back to the hotel after a long day and have an uninterrupted nights sleep!

Blogon Xmas – Conference Day

I really didn’t know what to expect the next day.  I have to say I didn’t really know what the set up would be. For those that are wondering the event was split up between different floors.

As you have probably guessed the conference was Christmas themed.  Which may seem early to some, but us bloggers have to think ahead – or so I have heard anyway!

The ground floor had lots of stalls with PR companies to chat to.  I loved this part of the conference.  The people were all so friendly, showing us the best toys / food that is around for the upcoming festive season.

It was fun to think that for once I am ahead of the game when it comes to research for Christmas pressies.  I made some good contacts too, and you can see some of the things I have since been working on over the next few weeks on the blog!

Blogon Xmas

Gemma (Life is Knutts) beat me at the Giggle Wiggle game in the PR hall 🙁


The other floors had seminars set up on a variety of different topics.  There was something for everyone, including tips on photography, instagram and facebook live!  I attended Blog / Life balance (which I still dont feel like I have!), Competitions 101 and the Origami session.

Before I went to the conference I have to say that after moving house, I felt like I had lost the love for my blog.  I think with so many other things to concentrate on.  Sorting the house, making sure the kids were settled, catching up with friends and family all took priority.

I just felt like the blog had taken a back seat.  However, Blogon has re-inspired me.  It has given me the push to keep going with my blog, but with a small difference.  I feel like I want to do it my way, and that means only taking on projects for the blog that I really want to do.  Being more selective I suppose.

I am so glad I attended Blogon and with so many lovely people there it made it even more amazing!

Getting my photos taken with the elves!


Bananas about Banana Bread

Bananas about Banana Bread

What better way to start a Monday than by making banana bread?

The boys have started going to school full time from this week.  It has left the house feeling very quiet and I am missing them terribly.

After I dropped them at school yesterday morning, I was faced with a huge to do list.  So rather than face the to do list head on, I made banana bread.  As you do….

In my defence I had two over ripe bananas to use.  I didn’t to waste them!

So I put on some music and set about making the house smell yummy!

What you need:

Banana Bread

  • A bread loaf tin lined with baking paper
  • Flour (plain) – 200g
  • Bicarb of Soda – 1/2 teaspoon
  • Baking Powder – 1 teaspoon
  • Caster Sugar – 115g
  • Butter (unsalted) – 60g
  • Chocolate Chips – Small Bag (optional)
  • Bananas (ripe) – 2
  • Egg – 1
  • Milk – 1 tablespoon

How to make Banana Bread

Preheat the oven to 180 C

If you have tried any of my other recipes, I tend to go for simple and easy bakes.  Something which can be rustled up quickly and easily.  This recipe is no different..

Firstly, sieve the flour, bicarb and baking powder into a large mixing bowl.

Then add the sugar and butter and rub the mixture together.  It will start to resemble breadcrumbs.

Then mash up the banana and mix this in, along with the milk and egg.

If you are adding the chocolate chips then add this in at the end.

Pour the mixture into the loaf tin, then cook in the oven for around 40 minutes.

Et Voila!  Easy banana bread, made easily.  Better put the kettle on….

Have you tried this recipe at home?  I would love to know how you got on, leave me a comment or tag me on social media!

For more recipes, visit out baking page here.

The boys have started school and I have been consoling myself by baking banana bread! Why not try it out too? It is really easy to make!