Thursday, 30 July 2015

What's Happened? What's Happening? #WHWH 30/07/15

What's Happened? What's Happening was back with a vengeance two weeks ago and we've loved reading your accounts of your days out, events, holidays and yummy meals out in What's Happened? We've loved seeing previews of forthcoming events in What's Happening? too.

Each fortnight we will be choosing our favourites from the linky before to showcase. We went with a Stately Home theme this week. Both of our families enjoy exploring historic venues and their grounds and we're lucky to have some fabulous examples within a nearby drive. Somewhere that's been on the 'to visit' list for a while is Blenheim Palace and Oxfordshire Bloggers' account of their visits over the years was written with real fondness for somewhere that's clearly important to Mary and her family.

Blenheim Palace - A Palace for All Seasons from Oxfordshire Bloggers
Photo Credit: Over 40 and a Mum to One

Our second choice was a fun toddlers day out for Hello Archie. Neither of us have ever shied away from taking our toddlers anywhere and it's always good to see other people follow suit. Bowood House is somewhere we've heard of through it's links with Tractor Ted and it looks to be a great place to explore with children of any age.

Toddlers Day Out at Bowood House from Hello Archie
Photo Credit: Hello Archie

Our What's Happening? choice was We're Going on an Adventure's trip to Cheshire Oaks which showcased their fantastic range of family fun activities. Although we've both visited Cheshire Oaks in the past I don't think either of us realised that they had so much planned for children over the Summer. I definitely think we might take a trip at some point. The photos in Colette's post were fab, how amazing to have a professional photographer follow you around on a shopping trip!

We're Going on an Adventure - Cheshire Oaks

What have you been up to? What are you planning?

We'd love you to link up your blog posts to What's Happened? - featuring events, days out, holidays, film, theatre and restaurant reviews and any other 'happeneds'. What's Happening? is the place for you to link your event previews, ongoing events and ticket giveaways.

We read and comment on every one and share on Twitter, Facebook. Google+, Pinterest and StumbleUpon.

I you're new to the linky read all about What's Happened? What's Happening and find out how to take part..

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My Mummy's Pennies

Sunday, 26 July 2015

My Sunday Photo #silentsunday 26/08/2015


Dora and Friends New Toy Range #Dorasingalong

You may have noticed that Dora the Explorer has had a recent transformation and now has longer hair, cooler clothes and new friends in a more 'grown up' Series, 'Dora and Friends.' My four year old daughter is a big fan of the new series and especially loves the song and music that play a significant part of it!

dora and friends toys

A brand new toy range from Fisher Price has just been released to accompany the series and we've been sent a selection of the new toys to try out...

dora and friends toy range

We were sent a box full of goodies including a Magic Charms Bracelet set RRP £9.99, a Dora Magic Adventure Charms set RRP £7.99, the new Dora Smartphone RRP £9.99, and Dora and Alana dolls RRP £10.99 each. These ae all available to buy at Smyths toys.

Magic Charms Bracelet set

Like most four year old girls, my daughter, Elizabeth absolutely loves jewellery of any sort, so she was delighted to see the Magic Charms Bracelet set. This set includes a plastic bracelet that has heart shaped charms displaying all of Dora's new friends, two coloured rubber bracelets and a selection of 6 charms, one of which is a mystery charm that comes wrapped up as a surprise. The charms can attach easily to all three bracelets, so you can mix and match between the and share them with friends, Elizabeth has spent lots of time rearranging then amoung the three bracelets and then proceeding to wear all three together! The charms re well made and very cute, depicting favourite animals and hobbies.

dora magic adventure charms

Dora Magic Adventure Charms set is a smaller version of this and is a lovely addition or would make a great gift on it's own, it includes a small Dora figure, a bracelet and 3 charms. These are also available in different colours, featuring other characters from the show. Elizabeth loved having the extra charms and the figure fits perfectly in her pocket so has been on some adventures with us this week!

dora and friends smartphone

The Dora Smartphone has been a huge hit, it rings, plays songs and phrases in both Spanish and English. I have to admit at first I thought it was a little loud but once it is removed from it's packing the volume decreases to a much more manageable level. The phone has been everywhere with Elizabeth this week an I thin she my be as attached to it as I am to my iphone! She chats away to it at her ear and the holding in front of her as if to type on the screen, the screen is a holographic display which changes from a touchpad display to images of Dora and her friends. My only negative with this that there sees to be no off switch, you just have to let it play out, which is fine for when it's being played with but not so great when you stand on it in the middle of the night!

Dora and friends dolls

Both the Dora and the Alana doll comes with it's own little doggy charm that is compatible with the bracelets in the other sets, they have removable shoes and clothing  and are really sweet.

Elizabeth loves her dolls so I wasn't surprised at how much she took to these Dora and Alana dolls, she has been playing a variety of roleplay and imaginative games with them and is delighted that they have their own charm bracelets just like her! She especially loves their clothes and playing with their hair, tying it up in a variety of styles.

From a parent's point of view I'm really impressed with the dolls in this range, they are shaped as children, not as unrealistic adults, their faces are simple, happy and make up free and their hair is good quality and perfect for little hands to play with, but most of all I love the clothes,  They are pretty children's clothes, modest and displaying images of puppies. unlike the very adult clothing worn by a few of the dolls Elizabeth has been bought, the shoes are flat and simple. I could see my child dressing like these dolls. The shoes do come off easily unfortunately and we've lost them a few times already but I find that's not unusual with dolls. 

All the toys in this range represent good value for money and hold really great play value. I cold see myself buying them as a gift for Elizabeth's friend's birthdays of as a special treat on a day out. Although not expensive they are good quality and hold a young child's interest well.

Sing Along Summer

To celebrate the release of the new toy range, there will be a Dora sing a long booth touring around the UK to give your children the chance to sing along with Dora and in some stores there will be a special visit from Dora herself! The #DoraSingAlong tour visits our local Symths Toys in Bury next week and we'll be popping a long to have a go in the booth! Dora fans can even enter videos of them singing in either in the booth or at home in a competition with a chance to star on Nick Jr! 

Check out your nearest stop on the tour below:

Symths Toys
  • Waterfields Retail Park, Watford (Dora Costume Character)  – 27th July
  • Westwood Cross Shopping Park, Thanet  – 28th July
  • St. David’s Retail Park, Swansea – 29th July
  • Crown retail park, Leeds (Dora Costume Character) – 31st July
  • Clifton Moor Retail Park, York (Costume Character) – 3rd August
  • Ravenhead Retail park, St.Helens  – 5th August
  • Halls Mill Retail Park, Bury – 6th August
  • Middle Engine Lane, Wallsend – 10th August
  • Glasgow fort shopping park, Glasgow (Costume Character) – 12th August
  • Beach Boulevard, Aberdeen (Costume Character) – 14th August
Sky stands
  • Brent Cross, London – 18th19th July
  • Centre MK, Milton Keynes – 25th– 26th July
  • White Rose, Leeds  – 1st– 2ndAugust
  • Intu Eldon Square, Newcastle  – 8th– 9th August
  • Bon Accord, Aberdeen – 15th– 16th August
If you have a Dora fan and fancy winning some toys from the new range, Why not join in with the #Dorasingalong Twitter Frenzy?

The Dora Sing-Along Twitter Frenzy takes place over on Twitter, tomorrow, 27th July, from 11am-12pm! Don’t forget to join in as you could win amazing prizes from the new Dora and Friends toy range! Follow @UKmumstv and #DoraSingAlong Download an activity sheet for your little one to colour in their own microphone here.

Tried and Tested