Mellow Mummy : Taking life as it comes...

Monday, 26 September 2016

Stretch Scooby-Doo Review

Stretch Scooby-Doo - one of the more unusual toys the girls have tried and tested on our Mellow Mummy journey!  Lara and Holly both really got into Scooby Doo while were were on holiday and so, when we first found out about the new, Stretch Scooby, they both couldn't wait to give him a try.

Stretch Scooby is a pretty big and chunky toy - he's a good 35cm tall even when he is in his un-stretched state but when you squeeze and pull his body, his arms and his legs he can extend to nearly 3 times his original size! He's massive!  You can pull him with all your effort and yet, when you let go, he springs back to his original state. The girls think it is hilarious because when one of them lets go, the other one falls over!

We loved the fact that when he isn't being stretched about, Scooby is simply Scooby-Doo and he looks pretty cool sitting on the shelf in the play room - a classic TV icon.  Lara not only likes to stretch Scooby with us but she has also discovered the hilarity of trying to tie his legs and arms in knots and then rotating Scooby's head and neck!  It's all rather surreal but has definitely been the source of much laughter and smiles over the past few days. 

Scooby's funny squishy texture (especially on his belly that feels like modelling clay) is of great fascination to Holly but at 4 years old she is not quite strong enough to really stretch Scooby without help from us, or her older sister.

We think that Stretch Scooby-Doo is fun, and silly and a little bit doubt perfect for a spooky halloween party or a Scooby themed party with friends!

Stretch Scooby-Doo from Character Options can be found online for around £19.99.

Saturday, 24 September 2016

Children's Book Review :: The Night the Stars Went Out

There once was a tiny alien, with a very big job...Alien was a star shiner.

Holly and Lara were both transported into magical sparkly space when I first read them this book; their eyes were wide open. Can you imagine having to shine all of the stars in the universe? Can you imagine if all of those stars suddenly stopped shining? Wow. The Night the Stars Went Out by Suz Hughes is the tale about the biggest problem that this tiny alien has ever had to solve. The girls couldn't believe it!

This delightful picture book follows poor little alien down to planet earth in search of special star shining varnish. Down on planet earth, the alien makes a new friend (star shining is a very lonely business normally) and discovers that there is more to life than shining stars. It really put a smile on my own face as we reached the end of the story and discovered that fun and friends, not special star shining varnish, were all that was needed to save the day!

This fun and friendly picture story book by Suz Hughes is published by Curious Fox and features bright, bold illustrations with lots of alien fun. We particularly loved the illustrations of the dark night sky with a rollercoaster path down to planet earth. Alien has very cool eyebrows and a very groovy moustache - it would be quite hard not to want to be friends with him!

I'd recommend The Night The Stars Went Out for children of about 2-7 years old - it makes a fabulous warming story just before bedtime.

Monday, 19 September 2016

Gruffalo Crumble and Other Recipes

This weekend has been all about the Gruffalo! Holly and I have really enjoyed spending our weekend cooking delightful creations from Gruffalo Crumble and Other Recipes, a new kids cookery book based on the characters and illustrations of the classic children's book by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler.

This fabulous hardback book features lots of recipe ideas that are easy to cook with children; from snacks to main courses and of course desserts.  I let Holly choose a menu for Saturday night of:-

Frog Muffins
Snake's Log Pile House
Turned Out Toes
Roasted Fox

We enjoyed buying the ingredients for our menu and we spent the afternoon together in the kitchen.

Holly particularly enjoyed mixing up a big bowl of sweet potato fries with spices to make our roasted fox.  Holly can't yet read the recipes herself but was keen to use the pictures in the book as a guide for our creations.

The girls tried lots of different foods that they wouldn't normally touch (cream cheese, sweet potato, olives, spinach) and the meal was a hit.  Of course, Holly had to dress the part for dinner.

On Sunday we went for a long walk looking for blackberries so that we could make our own Gruffalo crumble for pudding. It was a very popular pudding - no wonder mouse likes it.

Next weekend Holly is eager for us to make Fox sandwiches and Owl Ice Cream.

This is a fabulous cookbook that is easy to follow and includes tips for how to make the recipes more accessible for small people e.g. use of scissors instead of a knife for chopping parsley.  Its a book of foodie inspiration for small people and is packed full of ideas for a Gruffalo themed meal or even a party.

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