International Womens Day 2016

Something I wrote on Facebook earlier…

Today is International Women’s day.  
Do we need it? Hmm, let me think for a minute. In my life every month via my social media I get unwanted advances and dick pics, at work I am called honey/darling etc and told how pretty I am despite being cleverer with a better career history than any of the men around me, in my life I have been the victim of sexual assault and each time I was made to feel I had ‘asked for it’ and I cant even go for a run without being beeped at by men in cars and lorries. Hey, skin tight lycra just asks for sexist cat calling, right? 

It is still illegal to get an abortion without getting the permission of 2 doctors, our newspapers are full of topless or lingerie wearing pouting glamour models, porn showing violence to women (and loving it) is de rigueur, women are paid around 25% less than men in the same job and only 20% of FTSE250 companies board members are female.  

 Do we need it? We appear to be in a retrograde time – feminism as a cause is struggling to prevail having almost become a dirty word and womens rights across the globe have become more and more restricted. 

 So yes, yes we need it!  

Whats your thoughts?  


Roald Dahl Day 2015

When Puffin Books got in touch to ask if Reuben and I would like to make part in the Crafty Twits Challenge for Roald Dahl Day today (Sunday 13th Sept) its fair to say we were pretty excited. We both love Roald Dahl and for me, its fantastic to see your child enjoying reading particularly when its a book that you also enjoyed when you were their age.

The Twits has been reissued to coincide with this years Roald Dahl day and we were kindly sent 3 versions to review – a beardy one, a smelly one and a techy one! Plus Reuben was given the challenge to get crafty and create a Mr Twit style beard!!! He started thinking of what type of beard he would want and how it might look almost immediately, but more of that later…I love the book ‘the Twits’ – it is funny, not too long, grotesque (in the best way) and like all Dahl books has a very strong life message. In fact it contains one of my favourite book quotes ever which I’ve shared a few times via my social media –   Photo via my Instagram : @Blueskygirlie
Its a pretty good message don’t you think?

So, what about the books?  Reuben and I are both familiar with the story but a great story can be read again and again (another of the joys of Dahl) and where it is quite a short book it can be read together in just 2/3 days (we usually read together before Reuben goes to bed). The new style books themselves are lovely and definitely bring a new vibe to a well loved storybook.

‘The beardy one’ (available at all good booksellers rrp £9.99): this is a lovely chunky hardback book with a furry style beard on the front cover. This makes it very tactile and caught the eye of our almost 4 year old so could be a good one to buy for a younger child that you’d like to read to. It would definitely make a lovely gift.

As well as the story itself, theres a section at the back full of Roald Dahl trivia, writing tips and other fun tit bits. We loved these bits and definitely makes this version feel quite special.

The smelly one (available at all good booksellers rrp £5.99): this is a paperback version but has the added attraction of a selection of scratch and sniff stickers of Quentin Blake illustrations. And they do smell…awful! Being a typical 8 year old boy, Reuben loved the grossness of it!
The techy one (available via the App Store/Google Play – free): I knew Reuben would love the fact there was an app game and sure enough within minutes he had downloaded it and was playing it! You basically have to swipe away pieces of rubbish/food/ goodnessknowswhat coming from Mr Twit eating and stop them hitting and waking up a sleeping Mrs Twit while getting them to lodge back in his beard. If she wakes up she is not happy! Theres special missions to complete too and its great fun.
And finally onto our Mr Twit style beard…
Reuben loves his tech and gadgets and decided the perfect beard would be one not with hidden bits of lost food within it, but with hidden compartments for his ipod touch, video camera, ipod, Xbox controller and even a charging point! And here it is!!!
We had great fun making it together – it has hidden headphones, a chocolate bar for energy and sunglasses…because, well sunglasses are just cool according to Reuben!  
I reckon we could be into something here…we’re claiming copywrite now!!!

Have fun this Roald Dahl Day and spend some quality time maybe having a party, being silly, getting crafty with the Craft Twits challenge, baking some Roald Dahl inspired cakes and embracing the magical world of Roald Dahl with your kids….

Find more details of what you can do today and throughout the month here.

All books via Puffin books*

5 things my 8 year old loves 

My son Reuben is 8 years old and like most boys his age is very into certain ‘stuff’.  We have bought all our boys up to not be always asking for whatever the new trend is and to value the things they are given and I find once he gets something he likes he really makes use of it.  So todays blog showcases 5 of the things he currently loves! 
1) Minecraft Baseball cap from BHS – £8.00. Minecraft. It seems there is no getting away from it.  If you’re not familiar, Minecraft is a game where you build your own environments or you can go into other people worlds and experience theres  (plus fight, try not to get killed by Creepers, eat and catch animals, trade and of course, mine).  Our two 8 year old’s are OBSESSED!  This baseball cap is great quality and not too over branded… and yes, thats a creeper face. 
2) Diary of a Wimpy Kid DVD set from Amazon – £5.95 (current price subject to change).  After reading ALL the books the film adaptations were next on the list. A big favourite at school – both our boys are happy to watch them again and again and we get a few quiet hours!   
3) Gaming chair by Argos – £39.99.   This entry level gaming chair rocks and folds up for storage.  As our boys are still young we didn’t want versions with speakers, wifi or other gadgets but this chair makes them feel very grown up nonetheless.  They may be in year 3 but when its Xbox time things get serious. 
4) David Walliams books by WH Smith/various from £6.99.  Reubens nanny bought him his first couple of books at Christmas and since then he has really got into them.  Walliam’s books are great – funny and clever with a hint of Roald Dahl to them but very modern too.  Its wonderful to see your child reading for fun and these books are fantastic.  
5) Boat print t-shirt by TU at Sainburys – £4.  Ok, this is more a new purchase that I like, but Reubens been wearing it loads.  Boys tend to mainly wear t-shirts and jeans and its hard to find ones that aren’t all branded with the latest rubbish TV show.  I love the retro print on this one from Sainburys and at only £4 its an absolute steal too.

All items are available instore and online now.  What are your kids currently mad on?