Monday, 28 September 2015

Recipe: Um Bongo Jelly

Um Bongo, Um Bongo, They drink it in the Congo......
.....but in Sheffield we like to eat it as well.

Um Bongo first came to be in 1983, however as I was only 1 I'm guessing I didn't get to try it until a few years later.  It was certainly a staple drink in our house, the yummy combination of tropical flavours; apple, lemon, orange, pineapple, passion fruit and mandarin was far tastier then boring orange juice yet still super healthy.  And lets not forget that packaging and ever so catchy song that went along with it..... admit it, as soon as the product was re-launched in 2011 we were singing along to the words like it was only yesterday we last heard them.

Well 30 years later and the product is every bit as tasty as I remembered it, the packaging every bit as eye catching and the song exactly as I remembered.

Sunday, 27 September 2015

Lands' End Wish List ... part 1

After a lovely day at Lands' End HQ yesterday (post to follow) I've put together my family wish list from their current and newest collection, I know what I'll be asking Santa for this year.

Friday, 25 September 2015

Should our children be taught to be competitive?

........and if so who should this role fall to?

Should our children be taught that competition is only ok in certain circumstances and subjects?

This Tuesday was Ben's 'sports day', one of only 3 days of the year where I take time off work to go to school and see him achieve something or perform to the best of his ability.  But this year sports day was very different, we were told that the head teacher didn't believe children should be competitive any more.  I almost thought I had misheard but no, sports day was going to be a team event rather then individual competition.    They had all survived their Reception sports day unscathed (Y1 was cancelled) but now they are in Y2 we are being told that children cannot cope with disappointment until Y6 so sports day will be changing.

This year the children were split into teams of 9/10 children and would be scoring points towards a team total at individual activity stations, when the time was up someone else went to that activity and you moved on.  Let me share how sporty some of these were with you....

Throw a bean bag in a hoop.  Depending on which hoop it lands in you get 1, 2 or 3 points for your team.

Wednesday, 23 September 2015

Made in Sheffield: Proove Pizza

Starving after our visit to the Children's Hospital, and with it being gone 7pm so not wanting to cook anything I remembered a new Pizza place had opened in Broomhill and decided we should go and pay it a visit.

Friday, 18 September 2015

Our visit to the Children's Hospital

My plan for the weekend at 12pm on Thursday - finish work, chill at home then have a lazy Friday catching up on all the stuff that hadn't been done in the week (anyone fancy a mountain of washing up?) while the kids are at school.  After all this is Noah's first full week of school and therefore the first day I've had to myself in a very long time.

In reality ....... I get a phone call at 3.50 from hubby telling me he's off to the Children's hospital with Noah as he's fallen over on his way out of school and his elbow looks a little swollen.  Ah well, if he's anything like Ben it'll be just bruising, we'll be home again in a couple of hours......

So we got booked in and waited for the consultant.  She took one look before declaring she was sending him for an x-ray and would "be very surprised if it came back normal".  We were seen by x-ray really quickly ......

... and yup sure enough he had shaved a piece clean off his elbow bone (I'm sure it has a medical name) and would need putting in plaster to fix it back together.  The question was whether this would be enough.

Ben was so excited about the x-ray part

Wednesday, 16 September 2015

Made In Sheffield: El Toro

Hidden away in Broomhill, Sheffield, is a little gem of a Tapas restaurant called El Toro.  I recently got talking to Eddie, the owner, about Tapas as we're not generally a family who are that adventurous.  If it's not plain and simple then picky 1, 2 or 3 will refuse it.  Eddie assured me we'd not be disappointed and invited us to go and see what they have to offer.  He also took the time out to chat to me about the business and his menu inspirations, and provided a lovely giveaway.... read on to find out more.

Saturday, 12 September 2015

CBBC at 30: The 'Broom Cupboard'

I've just finished watching Hackers Birthday Bash - 30 years of Children's BBC on iplayer and it brought back soo many memories of presenters from the past.  I didn't recognise all of them, my prime CBBC years being probably 1987 to 1997 but these ones certainly shaped my past.

Before 1985 the BBC did show many many programmes fir children but these were shown independently with an voice-over in between, at 3.55pm on 9 September 1985 Phillip Schofield entered the 'Broom Cupboard' and the format changed.  Now there were live presenters doing the continuity links for the programmes.  The presenters sat behind a large control desk in a very small room, nicknamed the 'Broom Cupboard' where they talked to callers, read letters and birthday cards and filled the gaps when a programme didn't run to plan.

Here's my run down of the presenters that shaped my childhood...

Friday, 11 September 2015

Flashback Friday: Story Teller (and Little Story Teller)

Here we go 'round the mountain
singing our very own song.
When we're on our way
we shout "hooray!"
With a rat-a-tat-tat and a bing bang bong.

Doris and Morris, those adorable little magic hamsters ... Gobbilino ... Timbertwig ... My Naughty Little Sister ... Aldo in Arcadia and Digby.  
Mulit-coloured cassettes ... boxes ... binders...colourful magazines full of stories, puzzles and things to make and do.
  ..... Happy Happy memories.

Monday, 7 September 2015

Summer Holiday: Brimham Rocks, Harrogate

The boys love it when we go to old Abbey's or Castles where they can explore the walls, but there's always the element of which bits they can and can't climb on safely whilst protecting the historic buildings.  Brimham Rocks is like one, 50-60 acre, rocky playground.

Saturday, 5 September 2015

Review: Kids Mystery Case Files

When I was little there was this great puzzle magazine called Quiz Kids (ohh it still exists) and I used to love it.   That and the Usbourne Puzzle Adventures series which Ben thinks are fab.  In both cases you followed a story throughout, soving the puzzles and mystery's to solve the crime.  With this in mind when I saw the opportunity for a new e-magazine for children called "Kids Mystery Case Files" I put my name forwards.

The Kids Mystery Case Files are designed to let your child step inside a mystery and turn amateur sleuth to discover whodunnit and why.  By solving puzzles your children discover clues, clear suspects and solve the case.  Here's Detective Cracker to tell you some more.....

The magazines are online, however unless your children are happy doing things in their head you will need to print the activities as they aren't interactive, saying that Microsoft have released a few tools that can be used to highlight and scribble on pages if you know how to use them.

Lets take a look inside the one we reviewed #3 Poison Pen Letters

Wednesday, 2 September 2015

Moving House: Empty Box Idea: Ice box

I'm always one for wanting to try something out before I tell you about it, which is why this post has been sat in my drafts for a while.  However I think I'm going to have to admit defeat - the kids have gone back to school (well will have by the end of the week), I won't have a day off with my husband now until October and the sun seems to be intermittant.... I don't think we'll be having a BBQ any time soon (maybe next year).

Tuesday, 1 September 2015

Tesco Orchard Review: Finest Vintage Farmhouse Cheddar

"CHEESE"........ and like that the human sized mice in my house come scurrying over to see what cheese the Tesco delivery man has bought this week....blocks, sticks, grated, round, teddy bear shaped......

Personally, to me, cheese is cheese.  As I do the shopping and we are on a budget I tend to buy the huge heavy duty value 1kg mature blocks of cheddar.  But hubby has more sensitive taste buds (after all it is one of only about 6 foods that he eats) and prefers it when I buy a named brand like Cathedral City or Pilgrims Choice.    We don't really steer away from cheddar other then when we have pizza - however it's best not remind the husband about the time he tried to grate the mozzarella ball for home made pizza.

Whether it's

with salad....   

....   on shepherds pie.....