Let Santa know where you sleep with a Hey Santa Door Hanger
Let Santa know where you sleep with a Hey Santa Door Hanger – When Ryan was around the age of five or six he was fixated with robbers coming into our house so we had to make sure that there was nobody in his bedroom, under the bed or in the wardrobe before he was happy enough to go to bed. Christmas that same year he was really worried that he didn’t want Santa to go into his bedroom.
We told him that Santa would know this and leave his stocking outside of his bedroom door for him which relieved his anxiety and made it much easier than trying to get his stocking at the end of his bed where it had been left previously. So it’s become our tradition that the stockings are left outside the children’s bedrooms hanging on the door handle, and we’ll carry this on with both Isabelle and Freddie.
So how does Santa know which bedroom each child sleeps in?
Well he is amazingly magic, but as a helping hand we’ve got these amazing door plaques which we will leave on each of the children’s doors so that he knows exactly where to leave each stocking without mixing them up.
As Ryan is no longer a child he doesn’t get a stocking for Santa, but we’ll be hanging them out for both Isabelle and Freddie.
The plaques are from Hey Santa and can be personalised with your child’s name in either English or Welsh. Hey Santa is run by a brother and sister team who take pride in making your unique personalised door plaque.
Each plaque is made to order with your children’s name so make sure that you check that the spelling is correct and also allow a few days for delivery. Each plaque is £7.95 with FREE postage & packing within the UK.
What we think
I thought the quality of the plaque was really good and there was a good choice of colours to choose from. Isabelle loves her’s, especially since she has moved into a different bedroom and was worried that he might not know. These would make a great gift for children who will be able to use them year after year.
*We were sent a door plaque for both Isabelle and Freddie for the purpose of this review. All thoughts, opinions and photographs are our own.
Oregon Scientific Smart Globe Adventure – We were really excited when we knew that we were going to receive a Smart Globe to review. Isabelle is now eight and laps up facts and will quote back things that she’s learnt at school such as determining what the Romans ate by analysing their pooh which she found extremely interesting. Last school term she was learning about continents so the Smart Globe was a great way to be able to show her where all the continents and countries were that she knew.
The Smart Globe Adventure has many features which you can explore using the smart pen such as continents, countries, geography, cultures and age appropriate games including some in French.
Smart Learning Pen
The Smart Globe has five games plus 19 English language challenges + six French language activities
In touch mode, tap on a country to discover facts about continents, capitals, population and more
Local map to look at the United Kingdom and Ireland in more detail
Lots of quizzes
Download the 3D App to unlock further interaction
The Smart Globe Adventure was ready to use as soon as it was unboxed since the batteries were included and already installed which as a parent is always a good thing.
Isabelle was able to use the globe before I’d even had a chance to look at the instructions as it is very self explanatory. All the features are clearly labelled and activated using the smart pen.
The first challenge that we did was to find countries which for the first couple of goes were tricky, but once she’d played this a few times she was faster than me with some of them.
The Globe is a nice size and will look lovely displayed her in bedroom so that she can use it when she likes. The smart pen is attached by a wire which is great in terms of it getting misplaced or lost.
The voice was rather loud when it is first switched on but there is volume control, but it’s nice and clear for you to be able to hear.
Here are some of the facts that Isabelle found particularly interesting:
Bulgaria has bears and big wild cats in the mountains.
Cuba grows coffee, sugar cane, tobacco and citrus fruits and is especially famous for its cigars.
Greenland has lots of polar bears which can be over 8 feet long, and are the largest hunting animal in the world.
There are more sheep in Australia than people.
We found the app quite cool and easy to use, although you do need to have good lighting in the area that the globe is being used. This can be downloaded onto a smartphone or tablet but does take up quite a lot of space.
Isabelle couldn’t miss this when it arrived and wanted to open it straight away. Thankfully the packaging was easily removed and it was set up to use as soon as it was out of the box, with the batteries already inserted. I looked for the instructions whilst Isabelle got started with the globe without a second thought. You didn’t really need the instructions as the globe is very self-explanatory and easy to use.
Isabelle’s favourite features are finding the countries and the random facts which she found quite amusing. She thought that this would be something that would be good to use at school so we’re arranging for her to take it into school so that her class can all have a go with it at show and tell time.
The globe from Oregon Scientific retails at £59.99 and would make a great Christmas present.
*We were sent Smart Globe for the purpose of this review. All thoughts and opinions are our own. This post contains affiliate links
Eco by Naty Review – during your pregnancy there are lots of things to think about for the arrival of your baby. One of these things are products that you will use that will have contact with your baby’s new fragile skin. This is everything from washing powder to shampoo and wet wipes.
The decision to use washable nappies was made early on, but Chris is not onboard with the decision and so we’ve come to a compromise that we’ll use both which as I’m at home with Freddie will predominantly be washable nappies. I’m also going to give washable Wipes ago which didn’t work out last time.
Isabelle had eczema as a baby which guided our decisions on skincare, making sure that we used gentle and sensitive products. The less chemicals and overall ingredients the better!
We were sent a selection of Eco by Naty products. Eco by Naty is a Swedish brand which makes a selection of baby products including nappies, wet wipes, baby bath and skin care. The brand was developed by Marlene Sandberg a former Corporate Lawyer who saw a gap in the market for environmentally friendly nappies when she became a parent. Eco by Naty is one of the leading brands in eco-friendly nappies and baby products, and as such have received certification by several eco organisations.
Eco by Naty Nappies
Eco by Naty is the first nappy with OK Biobased Certification from one of the world’s most demanding independent non-profit organisations based on natural and compostable materials. The nappies are non-perfumed with a soft cloth like feel which has been certified by the Swedish Asthma and Allergy Association. There are no nasty harsh chemicals used making them a great choice for newborn and infant skin.
Unscented Wet Wipes
The unscented wipes are made from a renewable plant based material which is 100% natural, GM-Free and 100% compostable. They contain 98.5% water as well as soothing chamomile and aloe extract which help to prevent the causes of nappy rash even on sensitive skin.
I really liked the wet wipes. We had both a large pack and a travel pack ideal for the changing bag. The wipes were a good size and I liked that they were quite wet which made cleaning Freddie up really easy. They were unscented, but there was a lovely fresh water smell to them which I liked.
Nappy Rash Cream
The healing organic rash cream is made from tried and tested natural ingredients that soothes irritated skin and reduces redness often caused by trapped moisture. The cream is hypoallergenic and dermatologically tested and can be used daily. It is also fragrance free and includes NO parabens and NO mineral oils. The balm is an effective recipe infused with organically farmed botanicals such as rich shea butter and cooling aloe. Shea butter on its own is a natural baby-care product renowned for its intense concentration of natural vitamins. The infused aloe vera and sunflower oils are adept at calming dry and itching skin.
Freddie thankfully hasn’t suffered with nappy rash, but on the occasional day has had a little bit of redness on his bottom so I put on a little bit of cream at each nappy change which cleared up within the day. The cream is really soft and smooth and does exactly as it’s intended.
The Eco by Naty Organic Shampoo is fragrance free, contains No parabens and No mineral oils. It is hypoallergenic and dermatologically tested made from plant based natural and certified organic materials. It gently cleanses delicate hair and skin and can be used daily.
As with all of our baby skincare products, we choose our baby shampoo with skin sensitivities in mind. The Naty Shampoo worked really well with only a tiny amount. Freddie is just starting to get cradle cap on his scalp so we’re pleased that this, like the rest of the range is dermatologically tested with no nasty chemicals. The shampoo lathered up well and gave Freddie a clean baby smell following his bath. As we only use a tiny amount the bottle is going to go a long way.
The nappy bags are made of natural cornstarch film only so are fully biodegradable and can be composted with the nappy inside. They come packaged inside a cardboard box which is recyclable and contains 50 bags.
The nappy bags are easy to use as they dispense through the cardboard box so don’t all unravel if you’re trying to grab one mid nappy change. They have handles for tying the bag once the nappy is inside. I like that you can pop these straight into the compost bin.
This organically formulated Eco by Naty organic hand cream so it is naturally rich and deeply moisturising with high doses of aloe vera, shea butter (Butryospermum Parkii), Vitamin B5 and olive oil (Olea Europaea Fruit Oil). Naturally derived hydrolyzed keratin, the same protein that serves as the skin’s building block, is also a key ingredient. It strengthens skin by protecting it from free radicals and softens it. An extra bonus is healthier and stronger nails.
I thought this was a nice touch since you seem to wash your hands an excessive amount of times during the day when you have a newborn. The cream is really lightweight with only the slightest flowery type smell with no greasiness. I’ve been using this every day as I do get a bit of dry skin if I wash my hands a lot and none of the usual dryness has appeared so far which is always a bonus. I’ve kept this on the changing table so that I remember to do it.
Overall I’m impressed with the Eco by Naty range which is widely available in the big supermarkets and you can also sign up for a Nappy Subscription which is delivered direct to you every 3, 4 or 5 weeks. The nappies are more expensive than other disposable nappies, but you are getting what you pay for with the overall production and quality of the nappies. If you want to try them out you can order a trial box to see what you think.
Since single use plastic is a hot topic at the moment it’s definitely worth considering the switch as the benefits for both your baby and the environment are huge.
Fancy giving Naty Nappies a go? Pop over to the Eco by Naty website and just for you we have a 15% Discount Code. Just add babynotincluded at the checkout (this excludes the subscription service and trial box).
*We were sent a selection of Eco by Naty products for the purpose of this review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
SleepSpace Travel Cot Review – Over the past year or so we’ve tried to make the most of our family time. It’s really easy to get caught up in the day to day hustle and bustle of work and school, and if you throw in housework and a dog it can be really time consuming. We’ve decided as a family that the time that we do get together should be spent doing fun stuff, one of these things being taking the opportunity to venture outside of the house with day trips as well as the odd family holiday.
Saying that we haven’t got anything booked as yet since little Freddie was due at any time and we didn’t want to commit ourselves to anything until we’d got into our new family routine. Now that Freddie is very much here and making his presence known we can start thinking about our family adventures.
Previous experience of holidays where some things are provided such as cots, highchairs and prams have not been great so we like to take our own things so that we know they are safe and clean to use.
When we were asked to review the SleepSpace Travel Cot I was very excited. You may wonder why, but the SleepSpace is no ordinary travel cot as it is multifunctional, and doubles up as a play teepee or den if you’re seven.
The SleepSpace Travel cot is lightweight (6kg) and comes in it’s own zippable bag for easy carrying. It comes with its own padded mattress, 67 x 94 x 2cm which all standard travel cot fitted sheets can be fitted.
it has an umbrella style mechanism for folding/unfolding which makes it easy to put up and down with just a few clicks.
it also comes with a mosquito net perfect for our unusually hot weather, and a teepee which fits over the top to transform the cot into a safe play space.
The SleepSpace Travel Cot has fully padded edges to avoid bumps and has breathable mesh sides making it a safe place for your baby to sleep and play.
The SleepSpace Travel Cot is suitable from birth to 3 years and is available in 4 colours (Tangerine, Pebble, Kiwi and Ruby).
We took a few close up shots on Instagram to see if you guys could work out what we’d had delivered since this is no ordinary ‘run of the mill’ travel cot and quite a few of you savvy mums and dads had it sussed fairly quickly.
Assembling the SleepSpace Travel Cot was extremely easy with just a few clicks. We liked the mosquito net feature since the weather has been unusually hot so there are a lot of flying nasties to contend with. It’s got plenty of padding covering the frame to prevent any bumps.
Most importantly this was deemed ‘cool’ by our seven year old daughter once it was transformed into a teepee den. With a seven year old and a newborn there are few things that are appealing to both age groups but this definitely got the thumbs up from Isabelle who had this in her room for a few night to ‘try out’.
Freddie is obsessed with lights so we turned it into a little sensory light show with the help of Isabelle.
The SleepSpace Travel Cot has also won several awards which in my book always goes a long way since they use Mum and Dad reviewers to help make these decisions.
The test of all tests is whether or not the travel cot would go back in it’s bag. Don’t you just hate it when you buy something, take it out of the box and then it never goes back in there unless you squash it or sit on it. This went down and back in its bag like a dream.
Overall we were really impressed with the SleepSpace travel cot not only for its functionality as a safe place for Freddie to sleep but also the multifunctional use of a cool play space for both Freddie and Isabelle to enjoy.
The SleepSpace Travel Cot is available to buy at the BabyHub Shop for £149. To keep up to date with all the news and special offers sign up to their Newsletter.
Disclosure: We were sent a SleepSpace Travel Cot free of charge for the purpose of this review. All opinions and images are my own.
Fingerlings Review + Giveaway – Isabelle was very excited when she came home from school to find that she had been sent a new pet in the form of a Fingerlings Monkey to look after.
We were sent Candi who is a pink monkey with a little tuft of turquoise hair as well as turquoise wrists, ankles and the end of her tail. There are 19 monkeys to collect, some of which are two-tone like ours. You can pop over to the Fingerlings website where you can log which fingerlings you have, watch little videos and find out how to play with your Fingerling.
As well as Candi we have Gemma who is a unicorn so the two of them now hang out together in Isabelle’s room.
What can Candi do?
Candi is pretty impressive with the actions that she can do. She can blow you a kiss, makes several different sounds be touching the sensors on the top of her head and she really likes to hang upside down where she makes different sounds. In total there are around 40 sounds that she makes which I’m not sure we’ve heard all of them yet.
She also likes to have a little snooze and will close her eyes if you put her in the cradle position. We found that she quite likes to chill out on a bunch of bananas.
I think Isabelle prefers the monkey over her unicorn because the tail means that she can hang her upside down so we’ve found her everywhere from the kitchen units to the bannister on the stairs.
The Best Bit
If you have a Fingerling or seen the advert for the Fingerlings then you will already know what the ‘best bit is’.
Of course, at seven years old the funniest thing possibly on the planet is the fact that Candi can fart and burp. It never fails to get a chuckle out of Isabelle. If she’s grumpy or sad, any mention of anything to do with burping or farting is always going to get a reaction.
I hate the word FART so it’s quite nice that they’re referred to as TOOTING which again brings on the chuckles.
The Fingerlings retail at £14.99 so not an expensive toy and you can buy optional accessories such as monkey bar playset where they can hang out.
As well as Monkeys there are Unicorns and Sloths which are equally as cute.
What we think
As a mum the Fingerlings are a great toy to buy for your children. They are collectable which seems to be the only type of toy that Isabelle wants at the moment. They are portable so we can take the Fingerlings out and about if she wants to and the batteries last ages which is always a plus for us Mums and Dads.
Isabelle has played with her Fingerling monkey a lot since she arrived alongside her unicorn which she bought herself with her pocket money. She’s already decided that the next one that she wants is Marge the Sloth so that she has one of each type.
So with that the Fingerlings two tone Monkeys get a big thumbs up from both of us!
If you have a little boy or girl who would like a Fingerlings Monkey then please do enter our competition to WIN a Fingerlings Two-tone Monkey via our Rafflecopter
We were really excited to be sent some Chalkola Chalk Pens which can be used on any non-porous surfaces such as chalkboards, whiteboards, glass, plastic and windows. It is recommended that you do a test patch just in case.
As it is Christmas I thought we’d have a bit of fun with these and make some cool tea-light jars which could be used for a centre piece or placed on the fireplace.
When you first open the pens you have to give them a really good shake and then press down the nip so that the chalk comes through, and then you’re good to go.
Isabelle was really keen to get started with these.
We decided to make some tea-light candle jars which we could use as a centre piece for our Christmas table.
What you need:
Jars – Of any size or shape as long as you can drop a tea-light candle into them
This is Isabelle in action with the pens which could be used just like felt tip pins.
As it was on glass we just had to be careful that we didn’t smudge them, and also allow time to try (only a couple of minutes) or some of the colours run together.
These are our Christmas Tea-light jars which as you can see we have decorated with Christmas Trees and Christmas Lights.
Isabelle was keen to keep going with the pens so we decided to Jazz up our Dog’s Treat Jar which I think he quite likes.
I think the Chalkola Pens would be really great if you’re using chalkboards for your wedding – you could make some really cool personalised table number plaques or use a large one to create a seating plan.
These pens get the thumbs up for both Isabelle and I. You can get your hands on a set for yourself and we have a Discount Code for you. Just add 20OFFSTR at the checkout to get 20% Off.
*We were sent a range of Chalkola Pens for the purpose of this review. This post was originally posted in December 2016. This post also contains affiliate links which means I will receive a small fee if you click a link and make a purchase at no extra cost to you.
I’m totally loving the concept of subscription boxes. Choose the box of your choice, set up a payment plan and then BAM, every month a box appears through the post fully of lovely goodies. Boxes range from everything from make-up, feel good boxes and I’ve even seen some foodie type boxes.
Isabelle loves to make things, colour, cut, draw, stick so we’ve built up quite a good craft collection and often use Pinterest for inspiration.
We spotted toucanBox a few months ago which is perfect for Isabelle’s age range so when the opportunity to review the boxes came up we jumped at it.
toucanBox is aimed at children between 3 – 8 years. Each box comes with the complete kit and instructions to complete a crafty project.
There are three choices of subscription
Petite – contains one project and is shipped fortnightly
Grande – contains two themed projects and a reading book and are shipped monthly
Super Boxes – contains four themed projects and are shipped monthly
Payments are made when you first place the order and then monthly after that. There are no ties so you can cancel your subscription at any time and if you are away there’s even an option to pause your boxes and set them to come once you return.
toucanBox is addressed to your child which is lovely as all kids like to get post!
There’s a cool quiz that you can do on the site to find out your child’s personality. I did mine based on Isabelle and it came back with her being a Creator which I would totally agree with.
Isabelle is always making things. If she’s not drawing then she’s cutting things up or sticking things together.
So let’s get stuck in.
Isabelle was very excited to get the toucanBox through the post with her own name on it. I love the fact that it fits through the letter box so no waiting in or delivery cards through the door if you’re out.
Poor Isabelle is full of a cold in this video but doing some craft cheered her up.
I love that you get everything included to make the project including a glue stick and crayons. You could easily pop one of these in your bag and take on a train journey or away on holiday in case of rain.
Treasure Map & Parrot Partner
As explained in the video the box contained:
A tea bag
A paint brush
A Cardboard Parrot
A Glue Stick
A wiggly eye
A Jumbo Lolly Stick
The instructions were very clear and even tell you the difficulty and messiness rating as well as some cool pirate facts. There was also a sheet with ideas on pirate themed games once the project is complete.
First of all we had to make a cup of tea – perfect.
Crumple the paper into a ball and then flatten. I should have taken a picture of Isabelle as she did this as she was quite surprised as I usually tell her off for wasting paper and screwing it up.
Using the cup of tea (no milk, no sugar), paint the piece of paper and set aside to dry.
Whilst the paper is drying, colour the parrot with the crayons.
Then add the feathers to make your parrot. Isabelle was starting to get tired again as she was a poorly girl but making this made the day bearable and fun for both of us.
Once the paper was dry, add the stickers to create your Treasure Map.
Any boxes ordered between 17th November – 15th December will include Christmas themed projects which will be nice to do on a cold day. They are also running a Christmas Advent Calendar with a surprise a day.
*We were sent the toucanBox free of charge for the purpose of this review. All opinions and images are our own. This post was originally posted in November 2016.
Check your Meat and Veg – Check Testicular Cancer Campaign
Check Testicular Cancer Campaign – As a woman I think we get great support and coverage for female cancers such as breast cancer and cervical cancer, but there is still a long way to go where all cancers are concerned.
Men (most men) are ridiculous when it comes to going to the doctor when it comes to genuine medical concerns. They’re all ready to claim near death when it comes to a bout of man flu, but in general they tend to bury their heads in the sand when it comes to genuine concerns.
We’ve all heard of Movember where men grow all kinds of moustaches in support of Prostate Cancer, Testicular Cancer and Mental Health in men.
The Check Campaign
Heck Sausages have changed their name to Check for the duration of November to support men who are affected with Testicular Cancer encouraging them to Check for lumps in their testicles, and for women to Check their partners too.
The Heck family have a personal story for their support, and want to break the silence of the men of this earth.
Jamie Keeble says, “I found a small lump, immediately went to my GP and received my diagnosis. Even though a lot of stigma surrounds going to the doctor for such an intimate area, it is key to be proactive if you find a lump.
“Our research shows that too many men would ignore it if they found something and that many are unsure how to correctly check themselves.”
“Too many men are dying young from ignorance and lack of quick action. This disease needs to be openly discussed so that more guys will check themselves and feel they can talk to someone if something doesn’t feel right.
“60% don’t even know what a cancerous lump would feel like. In this day and age this has to stop! People need to be educated so that we can start making a difference.”
Check Sausages are available to buy in ASDA, Morrisons, Sainsburys, Tesco and Waitrose at £2.99 for a pack of six.
Did you know more than three quarters (76%) of women admitted they wouldn’t know what a cancerous lump would feel like on their partner’s testicles. Whereas almost half of men (46.6%) said they would know what a lump on their partner’s breast would feel like!
Hecks research revealed 82% of blokes are unwilling to talk to their doctor about any issues with their genitals.It seems that our men are too embarrassed to discuss their testicles with their GP, alarming new research has revealed.
A survey of 2,000 people has discovered the true extent of the taboo subject, with 82% of blokes unwilling to talk to their doctor about any issues with their genitals.The worrying results were commissioned by HECK – a Yorkshire-based sausage brand which is working alongside the world-leading men’s health charity The Movember Foundation.
Commenting on the poll findings, a spokesperson for The Movember Foundation said:
“Unfortunately this latest polling from HECK is accurate. Too many men are not checking themselves, not knowing what to look for and being too embarrassed to discuss the subject. Tackling these taboos head on, getting more men educated on the health risks they face, taking action when needed and talking when things get tough, is exactly why The Movember Foundation exists.”
The survey also showed that almost one in 10 (9.8%) of men between the ages of 18 and 24 would do nothing if they felt a lump on their testicle.
Testicular cancer is often described as a small pea-like lump on one testicle, but many men are unaware of this. Two thirds of men had no idea this was a sign of the deadly cancer.
One in five blokes (18.4%) of men incorrectly assumed that a cancerous lump feels ‘like a flat coin’.
The research also found that three-quarters of women (76%) would have no idea what a cancerous lump would feel like on their partner’s testicles.
In contrast, slightly less than half of men (46.6%) said they’d know when to be concerned about a lump on their partner’s breast.
The research was carried out by the brands founder, Jamie Keeble, who was diagnosed with testicular cancer two years ago. He said, “If men don’t know what testicular cancer might feel like, how can they possibly check themselves? Testicular cancer is on the rise and men can reduce their chances of dying simply by knowing what to feel for.”
Other results from the research include:
• The three UK cities where men are most likely to know what a cancerous lump feels like are: Warrington at 71%, Portsmouth at 61% and Sunderland at 57%
• More than one-quarter of men (26.7%) in Scotland say they’d wait a few days before doing anything if they discovered a lump on their testicle, compared to just 12% of men in the South-West
• Almost one in 10 (9.8%) of 18-24-year-old men say they’d do nothing if they felt a lump on a testicle; by contrast just 3% of women would do nothing if they felt a lump on a breast.
The facts speak for themselves really.
Come on Fella’s GET CHECKED! Better safe than sorry.
HECK is a family run business making farmers market quality sausages for Britain’s supermarkets. They have since increased their range to include burgers, meatballs, gluten-free and vegetarian sausages. All their products are made using ethical meat and ingredient choices to achieve award winning quality at affordable every day prices.
We were asked by HECK to produce a Meat and Two Veg Recipe in support of the Check Campaign.
Sausage, Bacon & Bean One Pot
2 Packs of Check Sausages (12 sausages)
1 Packet smoked Bacon
1 sliced red pepper
400g tin Butter Beans
200g tinned tomatoes (half a tin)
700g Jar passata
400g ton of beans
2 Teaspoons English Mustard
2 Teaspoons Barvarian Sweet mustard (can use wholegrain mustard)
1 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
Dash of Worcestershire sauce
A couple of sprigs of rosemary
A handful of parsley
A squirt of barbeque sauce
2 teaspoons of brown sugar
Salt and pepper to taste
What to do:
Roughly chop the bacon and fry in a little bit of oil and set to one side.
Brown off the sausages and add in the rosemary.
Put in the beans and add the bacon back in.
Add all the remaining ingredients and leave on the hob on a low heat for 30 – 40 minutes.
Towards the end add in the fresh parsley.
We had ours with buttery mashed potatoes and broccoli.
We’re big fans of one pot meals, and both of our kids are fans of sausages. We were really impressed by the quality of the sausages with very little fat coming out during cooking. They stayed in tact as well which not all sausages do when added into a saucy one pot. The meal went down very well with all of us enjoying it, and as an added bonus there are plenty of leftovers to make another meal.
Our family has recently been hit by the reality of male cancer so we were more than happy to help promote the CHECK Campaign. We were sent two packets of sausages for the purpose of this post but all thoughts and opinions are our own.
I’m writing this post on our second day of our midweek break at Bluestone Wales. We arrived yesterday so this is our official full day at the resort.
The Drive Up
We set off from Exeter yesterday whilst the sky was a strange yellow colour and the sun looked like it was on fire. I think from all of our friends facebook status’ that we were the only people in the whole of Exeter that hadn’t taken a picture and posted it.
The drive was pretty uneventful until we got closer to Wales. The closer we got to the resort the windier it became. There were leaves and bits of bush and twigs whirling around outside the car, and we could feel the wind against the car which swayed a little bit.
We arrived slightly early for check in and as the weather was pretty grim we sat in the carpark to wait. Some other people were slightly braver than we were and got out to take a bit of a walk. I think we were far more sensible as we watched them try to keep hold of their hoods, umbrellas and children.
A bit about Bluestone
Bluestone which will be celebrating it’s tenth birthday in 2018 is set in the middle of Pembrokeshire National Park surrounded by beaches and countryside with lots of historic features.
It’s a luxury resort where the kids can roam free, explore with lots of both indoor and outdoor activities for all ages.
There are a range of lodges and cottages to stay, and whilst the resort has a fantastic village vibe going on, it’s extremely spacious.
Bluestone does everything it can to remain an environmentally friendly business by following the Green Dragon Environmental Management System. Just from our first reccy around the resort we could see that a lot of love and attention to detail has been put into creating the Bluestone experience.
Once we were given the keys to the lodge we made our way down there to drop off our luggage. Once you have checked in and done the drop off, Bluestone is a car-free zone which is great for little ones. There are golf buggies and bikes to hire and of course there is the option to use your legs as well, oh and a bus service around the resort.
We were staying in a Dinas Lodge which sleeps eight people. My first impression was a good one. The lodge is huge. There is a living area where there is a TV and sofas which leads onto the kitchen/dining area. Again the kitchen/diner is massive with high ceilings and french doors that lead to a patio area. it’s decorated in natural tones with dark wood and leather sofas.
The kitchen is fully equipped with everything you would need to cook for a family of eight all week long. We have two fridges with a small freezer compartment in each fridge, a full sized oven and hob, a dishwasher and all the necessary kitchen gadgets such as toaster, kettle and cafetiere.
The bedrooms are all of a good size with plenty of space for our clothes. Most importantly we have two bathrooms which is always a bit of a deal breaker when there’s eight people all staying in the same space for a week.
Once we unpacked we went for a wander around the village which is just up the road from us. We found a lovely coffee place, the Pub (of course), the Orchard Restaurant, the park (the other of course), The Firehouse Grill and some shops all to explore in more depth.
Our first impression is very positive. I love the high ceilings and the open plan layout of the lodge. We really like that everything is on one level which isn’t as big a deal for us since our youngest is seven. Having the large dining table which seats all of us was great for our first night which was curry night.
Can’t wait to have a proper look around tomorrow. You can also keep up to date with what we’re up to by checking out our Instagram feed.
*disclaimer – we were given a mid-week stay at Bluestone in exchange for a review. All thoughts and opinions are our own.