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Lucy xx

Tuesday, 31 March 2015

The Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre, UK Days out, Kids Museum


Half term is around the corner, I'm not going away bit I need great days out to keep my little people amused, I bet you do too.  I found a fabulous day out, we went on the weekend, I took my boys to The Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre, its in Great Missenden.


 
I'm guessing everyone knows who Roald Dahl is, otherwise where have you been hiding? In a box or maybe you've just been born?  I recalled being in Primary school, I must of been about 6, I sitting in the school hall, Mr Barnes reading us numerous stories, including James and the Giant Peach.  the idea of giant talking bugs puzzled me.   Even back in the 80s Roald Dahl captured the imagination of little people.



More recently, my son James has been coming home from school and asking me to read Roald Dahl books.  He adores Charlie and Chocolate Factory, at school they are currently reading in class the Fantastic Mr Fox.  Which is fabulous, as we have a little collection of books at home and now James and Liam are both requesting books to read and films to watch. 

When my boys were babies, I would read them the collection until they fell asleep, actually I would read a couple of extra chapters, I couldn't wait until the next night.  Then they got a little older, they wanted Thomas Tank and other character books read at bedtime.  I am happy we've gone full circle. 

As a treat I took them to Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre.  We drove from Croxley - Herts, it took less then half an hour.  However if you are traveling from London, The Chiltern Railways is 40 minutes to Great Missenden from Marylebone, the station is just around the corner from the Museum.



The centre isn't huge but it great fun, with a lot of see.  Its like a giant collage of history for us to engage with.  Letters, note pads, photos, drafts, its like nothing has even been thrown away but its not cluttered, its informative, interesting and fun. There is something for everyone, even younger children can do things and not get bored. Its aimed audience is 6-12 years. 





Roald Dahl had a wonderful relationship with his mother, she gave him so much encouragement to write, without being pushy.  She would send him pens, writing pads, sweets.  Roald Dahl had a beautiful love for words, also making up words and bringing these words into our world.  He mind was totally bonkers sometimes but that shows in his stories. 







Roald Dahl's first published work, Shot Down Over Libya on 1 August 1942.  The story, is about his wartime adventures.  Later in 1943 Roald Dahl published his first children book, the Gremlins.  This story is about mischievous mythical creatures, the gremlins' they have motivation for sabotaging British aircraft.  Both of these books have an association to war, but mostly flying, this was a big factor in Roald Dahl's life, in 1939 Roald joined the Royal Air Force (RAF). He retired with a title Squadron Leader.



In later life in 1954 Roald moved into Gipsy House, Great Missenden in Buckinghamshire.  The Store centre has Roald Dahl's Comfy chair, desk with all of his little habits, pens, photos, lucky charms and rocks from his Cabin.  The cabin is situated here with a glass window, for everyone to gaze at it.



As its Easters we were given a little Easter Hunt, the boys had to found the clues and overall answer.  The answer was a name of a chocolate bar much to their disappointed they didnt win a bar of chocolate. But a collectable trump card.  This added to the entertainment for our afternoon.  




In the backrooms, there is plenty to do, from creative writing ideas, leaving a dream idea in bottle, dressing-up, decorating Easter Eggs. Also a touch of animation film making, James loved this the most.



We had a great afternoon, where was so much to do, see, learn, even being creative. I really enjoyed myself, so did my family.



If you fancy a little getaway from London, I recommend The Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre.   
Dont be shy, came and say Hi! - Whats your favourite story?  Mine is the Revolting Rhymes collection, Cinderella actually.  It's so much better then the original story.  Bouncing head cracks me up each time.

Disclaimer: Our fun day out!






 

Saturday, 28 March 2015

Top ten family holiday activities in London - voted by parents



TWO THIRDS OF BRITISH FAMILIES HAVEN’T VISITED LONDON

·        Despite being voted the top capital city (19 percent) for a family holiday, 70 percent of UK parents haven’t visited London with their children
·        The top reason (38 percent) that parents overlook London for a family holiday is that it’s perceived to be too expensive, however 50 percent of the top ten London experiences for kids to try before they’re 12 years old are actually free
·        Those in Bristol (80 percent), Belfast (79 percent) and Sheffield (75 percent) are among the areas where the majority of families have not visited the capital 


With the half-term and Easter holidays around the corner, a survey has shown that despite a wealth of culture and top attractions our capital city is being overlooked by UK families as an option for a break away.

Commissioned by the Royal Garden Hotel which offers a family-friendly package, the survey of 2,000 parents revealed that almost half of British parents (38 percent) think London is too expensive for the average family to visit.  Contrary to this, the research showed that 8 out of 10 of the top ten experiences in London that parents think will enrich their children are either free or have a minimal cost – while visiting all ten attractions would cost a family of four under £200 [1] in total. 

Top London experiences for kids to try before they’re 12 years old:
1.      Travel the underground (46%) – free for 10 and younger
2.      Ride on the top of a double decker bus (45%) – free for 10 and younger
3.      Take a ride on the London Eye (41%)
4.      See the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace (35%) – free to see
5.      See the dinosaur skeletons at the National History Museum (34%) – free general entrance
6.      Go to the Science Museum (33%) – free general entrance
7.      See the penguins at London Zoo (31%)
8.      Visit Winter Wonderland (30%) – free to visit
9.      Buy a toy from Hamley’s (28%)
10.   See the Houses of Parliament (25%) – free to see

A third (31 percent) of parents are under the illusion that London museums charge for entry, however top attractions such as the Science Museum – where 33 percent of children want to visit – and the Natural History Museum – where 34 percent of children want to visit – actually have free general admission all year round.

Another interesting finding is that a fifth (20 percent) think London hotels don’t cater for families when in actual fact there are many family-friendly hotels offering  great value room packages during school holidays.

Despite reservations of London being a holiday destination, parents actually voted London the top capital city (19 percent) to visit with the kids, followed by continental capitals, Paris (18 percent), Rome (12 percent) and Madrid (10 percent).

Commenting on the survey, Jonathan Lowrey, General Manager at the Royal Garden Hotel, said: “It’s a pity to see that lots of children are missing out on visiting the country’s capital city. With our research showing the top ingredients for the perfect family break are spending quality time together (62 percent) and having fun things to do and see (57 percent), families are missing a trick if they don’t consider visiting London this half-term or Easter.

He continued: “We know that planning a family holiday can be a challenge and our research shows that the top stresses for parents are travelling to the destination (45 percent), packing (35 percent) and organising fun things for the family to do (30 percent). With easy transport links and a wealth of free and reasonably priced attractions to alleviate these worries, London offers families the opportunity for an action packed break away with the kids without having to compromise on great value.”



[1] For a family of four with children 12 years and under, the cost to visit all ten attractions would be £193.04. Underground and bus: £36 per family for a day travel card. Parents are £12 each and kids are £6. London eye: £74 standard ticket. London Zoo: £68.04. Toy at Hamley’s: standard cuddly toy is £15.

Don't be shy, come and say Hi! What are your thoughts on London.

Disclaimer:  Unsponsored Post 

Friday, 27 March 2015

I'm a Celebrity... Get me out of here! #Review New attraction at Thorpe Park


Yesterday I had the privilege to being one of the first people to step inside 'I'm a Celebrity... Get me out of here!' A maze attraction at Thorpe Park.


Before its even opened to the general public, that happen today, 27th March 2015!  I was extremely honoured for starters as I got to try this before the Real Celebrities for its Premiere opening last night.



The Creative minds, The Engineers behind this project

From start to finish the project only took 6 months to build, from paper to people running wild inside, thats not bad, hey?  Of course the inspiration has come from the Great Television Show... I'm a Celebrity... get me out of here!   I love I'm a Celeb, I haven't missed a series yet, so I had high expectations for the day.


I don't want to give the game away but can you imagine, you done a few rides maybe a roller coaster or two, the adrenalin is pumping through your body and you fancy a little break.  Well welcome to the JUNGLE.  Ant and Dec will greet you with open arms just as they do to all their Celebrities...  They said, I'm a Celebrity... We hope you get out of there? 


You follow guides as they take you around the maze, there's Holey Moley...
You may find something hiding inside, just hope your lucky stars you get a good prize.


You'll be ducking and diving from room to room, there are 5 zones in total, the best way I can explain it, is its like the Crystal Maze Television show.  You feel part of a team, its an experience, a synergy everyone is working with you, you're running around wanting to win but not 100% sure whats coming around the corner or whats under your feet crawling on the floor so make sure to look out.



I'm a celeb just wouldn't be, without a Trial, The Chambers of Horrors will meet you here, get your answers wrong and you might get left behind covered in critters, ugly creepy bugs.  Be careful not to get them in your hair and down your back and don't look up you've no-idea what and if more may come down.  Just get the answers right and you could winning this Jungle fight.

The final trial will have you in the dark, just keep running, pushing, crawling and sliding around and don't forget to slam the button down to be Crowned King or Queen of the JUNGLE.


  I'm a Celebrity... Get me out of here!!!

Its a well thought out attraction, well executed and very entertaining.  Its great to go to a theme park, its even better when there's attractions to suit everyone, not everyone loves the thrill of the daredevil rides and this is well balanced for the folk that like to keep their feet firmly on the ground.  I personal really enjoyed I'm a Celebrity... Get me out of here!  I can't wait to go back.

I would like to thank Thorpe Park, I had a lovely day.  I came home exhausted with a big smile and fantastic goodie bags, that my kids loved.

Look at these... The chocolate ants got eaten in 2 minutes.  My boys even tired the ant lollies but after a few licks and sucks they got binned.  James told me he could see their eyes.



Disclaimer:  I was asked to come along and try the new attraction in return for a honest review.

Dont be shy, please come and say Hi!

    

Thursday, 26 March 2015

DO YOU WANT TO WIN A MIRACLESUIT SWIMWEAR - COMPETITON



 

In the last week the sun has been poking through, holidays are being booked, (cough, cough) diets are being restarted.  I myself have just started jogging again.  Just incase you can't be bothered with all of this fitness malarkey but want quick results I have an answer, its an actual miracle to be honest. 

Miraclesuit, making both swimwear and shapewear.  Miraclesuit Shapewear slogan is "Look 10lbs Lighter in 10 Seconds" they guarantee a flatter and streamline silhouette.



Its figure hugging construction, shapes the wearer, provides triple the holding power. Its been constructed with an new innovation fabric called Miratex, which has three times as much spandex as the average swimming costume.

Lucky for you, I have been given a beautiful swimsuit to give to one of my fabulous readers, from Patricia Eve, they are specialists in Shapewear, Swimwear, Nightwear and Underwear products.  Offering a whole host of brands.  

Iconique:  They showcase a beautiful line of summer wear, get ready to live in the Mediterranean with the Iconique  This collection shows the perfect Italian style and sophisticated taste.  One of favourites is this A-line dress, perfectly cut, I want it in all the fabulous colours. 



Vacanze Italiane: Ethnic, flowery and colourful in all manner of bold and mini printings, the collection of tropical lands, beautiful flowers and powerful animals.  Most definitely a luxurious brand.   I adore the Vacanze Cover Up; these beautiful trousers don't need an explanation, simply stunning, comfortable to wear, eye catching, with sexy open sides, very foxy indeed. 



Miraclesuit Shapewear: Fabulous shapewear, simply giving us ladies a natural nip and tuck, sucking us in, ensuring a couple of inches are tucked away and smoothed out of sight.  The Sexy Sheer Hi Waist Slip is a must for my wardrobe, its doesn't roll down or up, giving the prefect hourglass silhouette.  I need to look 10 lbs lighter here, yes please. 



These are just a few brands Patricia Eve offer.  Summer is just around the corner, Patricia Eve can brighten up any wardrobe with just a few selected pieces, so many statement pieces to choose from.   Don't be surprised where the outlets are? Figleaves.com, Simply Beach, Next, ASOS to name a couple.



Miraclesuit Swimwear: Every woman´s dream can come true with Miraclesuit, it has three times the "holding power" of the average swimsuit and accomplishes this without the conventional girdle control linings, simply engineered like no other swimsuit in the world.  Miraclesuit swimwear current line is full of vibrate colours, its a party on the beach, with a array of pretty colours, bold, flowers, dots, sexy sheer designs for all age groups. 



As promised I have Miraclesuit Swimwear costume to giveaway; as modeled here. I am giving away a size 12, its from the Sonita range; Blue. RRP £130.   Remember if you don't win, Patricia Eve is an UK distributor for Miraclesuit swimwear, featuring all the new season and latest styles.   All luxurious bands, feeling beautiful and looking magnificent!

    GOOD LUCK


T&Cs:  Please follow the 5 steps:
Follow Patricia Eve on Facebook, Follow Patricia Eve on Twitter, Follow me LondonBirdLucy on Twitter and ensure to tweet the Competition tweet. The #LBL Tweet and leave a comment on another blog post.
Ends 17th April - Open to UK residence only, 18+
 - Winner contacted soon after   

Fantastic, I am looking forward to reading all of your comments.  Don't be shy, come and say HELLO!
Disclaimer: Please note this is an unsponsored post.   

Monday, 23 March 2015

Blaze and the Monster Machines #TwitterParty, Friday 6th March 2015 #NickJrBlaze

Hello!

I was a party host for the premiere of Blaze and the Monster Machines. Firstly, I would like to thank everyone who joined in over on Twitter for the fun.  I had a house full of kids and parents, we had a stack of fabulous of activities as long as my arm to do, hence I didn't tweet too much however I hope I kept everyone in the loop.


So what did everyone think of Blaze and AJ and The Monster Machines?  I think they are pretty cool, most of all I had a bunch of children frozen to the TV very entertained.  

Blaze is the coolest Monster Truck in Axel City, Blaze his a great group of friends; AJ is his best friend, he is the only human driver to all the Monster machines, he has the need for speed too.   Would you like to meet the rest of the team? Gabby is a cool Mechanic, then theirs Crusher, Pickle, Darington, Starla, Stripes and Zeg.  Va va Vrooom!



If there is any sign of danger Blaze will be there.  Blaze is the sleek number one racer, such a hero in Axel City, he has the ability to transform himself into any machine, this comes in very handy when things get tough, he has scientific know-how to transform, always explaining what he has to do transform.


Blaze is unbeatable on the tracks thanks with his blazing speed. He is clever too. Blaze knows everything about science, technology, engineering and maths.  Educating through STEM.

Just incase you have missed Blaze he is on every day, Channel: Nick Jr at 4pm!

We had a fun packed afternoon, filled with lots of activities:

While watching Blaze and the Monster Machines we put our minds to the test and helped Blaze through the Maze, he had to find his way out.   I was very impressed, with the speed of my guests everyone completed the tasks in minutes.


Now who doesn't like treats?  Who hasn't like making things to eat?  We made our own Monster Machines.  Milky Ways in hand, Smarties for wheels and Jelly Babies drives. This was my favourite task, more funny ensuring the kids didn't eat the creations while making, it was so tempting.  The end results speak for themselves, smashing. 


Our next task was very tricky, we had massive boxes, straws, wooden wheels, long sticks, Plasticine and lots of stickers.  Working in group of 3 we made Monster Machines.  To be honest all the kids decided this wasnt for them and all the mums got stick-in, we laughed so much. We had 3 buses in the end and none of them moved they were so big.  But I love the idea of how easy they where to build, once we understood what to do.  I had seen some of the other bloggers with smaller vehicles and the worked a dream, so I would suggest egg boxes as they are small and compacted.


Our forth task was a lot more fun, we had some great coloured shapes and an assortment of coloured buttons.  The kids worked in groups and had to count the beads and the buttons.  It was lovely to see them work in teams and using the brains to get the correct answers.  Afterwards for for they drawe the drew the buttons and coloured them in.


We skipped the Sink or float test.  However I did this in the week with James and Liam. The really enjoyed the test.  Here our findings:




I thought I had this in the bag - I was wrong it wasn't that easy. James' guesses were very good.  Liam tried his best but alas a few tears as he kept getting them wrong.  I explained this is an experiment, we are all learning something new.  He felt better after his brother swapped mine and Liam's answers.  They are funny!  

We were lucky to be given a couple of Great Gizmos A Lemon clock and Jaws teeth hidden in a egg.  We couldn't get the lemon to work, shame as daddy was in charge of this one and tried his best.  The Jaws teeth was a huge success, we had the had the children taking turns in sawing the egg, all very excited to see what was hidden inside.  Mums loved this too, as it really keep the kids busy for a while.

I hope you have enjoyed our activities, maybe you feel inspired to try them at home.

Blaze will keep you using your imagination too, great for little minds to learnt something new as will as enjoy a great new cartoon.

Blaze and the Machine starts at 4pm every weekday

Channel: Nick Jr.
Sky Entertainment Extra Pack - 615
Virgin Media - Large or XL Packages - 715
Talk Talk - Kids Boost package - 559


James decided its that good, he camps out right in front of the TV!     
 

I hope you enjoyed Blaze and the Monster Machines as much as we do.
Don't be shy, come and say Hi!
Please note this is a sponsored post.