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sairmare

sairmare
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Member since: 23.10.2009

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      02.03.2010 11:05
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      A great toy for litle cruisers

      This Vtech baby walker is a fantastic little multi activity toy for a growing, and exploring baby.

      The walker:

      The walker is yellow with a large red grip handle at the top; it has 4 red wheels and 2 blue legs.

      It has three spinning wheels which are attached to the base of the toy which are brightly coloured and have engraved pictures on them such as sunshine, a boat and a train.

      There is also a detachable learning table which has lots of different activities, there are lots of buttons for baby to press and moveable parts which talk or plays music when pressed or moved, there are also lots of encouraging flashing lights.

      The sounds and music introduce different letter sounds, words, numbers, shapes, animals, animal sounds and colours.
      There is a removable telephone which attaches onto the tray too.

      The tray is very easy to remove with the push of a button and it also very easily slides back onto the base unit.

      Assembly:

      The walker came flat packed in a box, however it was very easy to fit together as the pieces fit in very easily without the need for tools. The instructions are very clear and as well as them being printed out, a very simple version is engraved into the rear of the toy, therefore there is no chance of loosing them.

      Personal Experience:

      My son is now 8 months old and has found his feet; therefore I bought him this walker as I thought it would be an appropriate toy for his stage of development.

      My son loves this toy, every time I place it out for him, he can't get to it fast enough. He loves to climb up the front and play with the activity table. (He does this when the toy is against the sofa, as it is very light, therefore it just rolls away when he tries to do it when the toy is just free standing.)

      My boy also loves the activity tray when I put it on the floor for him, he loves to press the buttons and move the other parts.

      The only problems I have found is that the toy is not really heavy enough to take my sons balance, he tries to walk with it as a walker but it goes too fast. However he is only 8 months, therefore he cannot support his own balance yet.


      The removable activity table requires 3 AA batteries which are simple to insert.

      The walker is available from most toy stores, I got mine from Asda, it is recommended for children aged 6 - 30 months and is also available in pink.

      The price varies, mine was £25.99, however I have seen it in many shops for £29.99

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      • Snowdome Tamworth / Sporting Venue / 114 Readings / 109 Ratings
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        12.12.2009 17:25
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        A great festive experience.

        We visited Tamworth Snowdome last week, we had booked the Santa's Winter Wonderland experience as a birthday treat for our, now 6 year old daughter.

        Santa's Winter Wonderland is a wonderful indoor festive experience which runs from late November all the way through until the end of December. It involves 25 mins playing in an artificial round walkway of real snow and snow slides, then you watch a short show, starring Sooty, Sweep and Sue, and Santa of course, then you go on to meet Santa's Reindeer and other animals.

        Our Experience:

        Booking:
        I booked our experience online, which was very quick and easy, after clicking the book online now link, after choosing the option, how to book and prices, we chose this years option, (you can also book up for next year already.)

        You fill in how many adults and children you require, after that you choose which date you would like to visit on, out of a choice of availability, and then you have a choice of times to book. After you have chosen your preferred date and time, it will then give you an option of times to choose from and the price. Its as simple as that, after accepting their terms and conditions, you go on to pay online by debit or credit card.

        You are then given a booking number and a conformation form, which we printed out and took with us to the Snowdome.

        Arriving:
        We were booked into the Winter Wonderland at 1.00pm, we got there a little early, but as soon as we walked in we knew where to go as there was a lady wearing big reindeer antlers and wearing red jumper with Winter Wonderland written on the front, stood by the front desk.

        We were asked to come back to the desk 10 mins before we were booked in, and took the opportunity to go and sit in the viewing area for the ski slope.

        At this point my daughter almost turned green, tugging on my arm she said, Mommy, it wasn't like this last time! (She was worried; she had to go down the ski slope!) It was very funny!

        When we went back to the desk we were taken down some steps (there is wheelchair access) to a lovely decorated waiting area where you can view the snow play. A very pleasant member of staff was getting the children all excited about the snow over her microphone.

        Snow Play:
        We entered the snow play, where we grabbed a sledge. There were plenty of sledges available.
        We then made our way around the room, which was designed and decorated as a lovely magical Christmas snowy forest. There were lots of Christmas trees and lights and Christmas displays.

        It was a circle walkway which you could walk all the way around.

        The snow was not that deep, you can't make snow men, but it is deep enough to have fun, my daughter was able to make snow angels and throw snowballs at me!

        There was also a wide slope, where we slid down on inflatable rings; there were also a few mini ones of these around the snow forest.

        We had 25 mins in the snow, which I felt was just the right amount of time.

        The Show:
        We were led into a small theatre and sat on tiered bench seating, with the stage in front of us.

        The show was lovely it went on for about 20 mins and starred Sooty, Sweep and Soo and an appearance of Santa.

        The Animals:
        We were then taken to a room filled with animals such as sheep, ducks, and pigs in pens, you are able to stroke them, and there were even members of staff holding rabbits for the children to pet. (There is antibacterial hand gel to wash your hand with too.)

        There were also reindeers there which was lovely for us to see real reindeers.
        (I am aware some people are offended by animals being kept in cages, however this is your personal opinion and I respect that, however all of the animals seemed happy an healthy.)

        You can also get your photograph taken on Santa's sleigh in this room, available to purchase for £5 in a souvenir card frame.

        I would defiantly recommend this experience for children, however I wouldn't recommend it for small babies as it is very cold and there were two families there with small babies who were struggling a little in the snow to keep them safe, as there were children and adults running around and sliding around having fun.

        My daughter also received a Thornton's reindeer chocolate lollipop on the way out.

        The whole experience lasted about an hour and 20 mins for us.

        It is an experience we will be doing again next year for sure! Basil Brush is the star of the show next year too!

        My advice:

        We also did this experience two year ago but found that there were a few too many people in the snow play, however this year we booked it mid day, when our daughter was off school on a teacher training day. This was fantastic as there weren't as many people as our last visit and we could run around in the snow and on the sledges without worrying about bumping into anyone.

        I would recommend warm clothing, wellies and gloves, as it is very cold! (Well it is real snow!)

        Booking Information:

        You are advised to book and pay in advance, you can do this online through their website which is www.snowdome.co.uk or by telephoning 08448 000011.

        Santa's Winter Wonderland sessions run at many various time throuought the day.

        It does state that the experience is not suitable for pushchairs, however do not let this put you off if you are looking into this experience and require the use of a wheelchair.

        I would consider this a sensory experience, and would recommend it for school trips, when we visited there was a group of children with special educational needs and various disabilities. Access was available which made it easy for them to join in riding on sledges and playing in the snow, they were really laughing and enjoying themselves.

        I do think it would be better if the children could meet Santa personally; however this is probably not an option due to the high number of children.

        The Cost:

        It cost us almost £40 for two adults and our daughter for the experience, although it is a little expensive, its well worth it.

        The cost does vary depending on what day you go on. We had one of the cheaper sessions.

        Children under 2 are free, however for some reason, you cannot book a free child place online, and you need to do it by phone or by going into the Snowdome.

        Thank you for reading this rather lengthy review.

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        • More +
          09.12.2009 11:07
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          A good toy if you can get it for £5

          My daughter is a fan of all things Disney, after noticing this Remy a few years back at a special price on Amazon, we got it her for another little gift to wrap up off Santa.

          This is an interactive Remy toy.

          Remy is the star of the Disney movie Ratatouille, a cute little Rat who becomes an amazing chef!

          Remy has a solid body, it's not a soft cuddy bedtime toy, and he holds a spoon he is holding a spoon in his hand which he stirs as one of his actions.


          He says lots of different phrases about cooking too. However the funny thing is, the Remy we received spoke Spanish and not English. I was very annoyed to start with; however I was unable to send it back as we had ripped the packaging.

          At no point on the advertising of this toy when we bought it did it say - speaks Spanish., but then to give Amazon credit, neither did it say - speaks English.

          I can laugh about it because my daughter loved it, she didn't care that it spoke Spanish, she even repeats all of the phrases in Spanish, I would love to know what she is saying though!

          It has become a big hit with our friends and family too, who all say we bought it from Del Boy!

          We saw the English version in Matalan not so long back for just £5, I asked my daughter if she wanted it and she said no, it doesn't talk funny! (Meaning it doesn't speak Spanish!) How funny!

          Well apparently the English Remy says phrases such as - let's get ready to cook and what shall we cook today. You can also put food items under his nose and he will comment on them. This works as he has a movement sensor under his snout.


          He is not worth £30 which they are priced at the moment! I don't know how we managed to get him so cheap at the time! I would also warn you from buying this from Amazon, reading a recent review on there, someone has purchased one and it speaks in French! The person is very annoyed. I would be if I paid £30!!!!

          If you can get him for £5 then I would defiantly recommend purchasing him at this price.

          The really bad thing was that, when I wrote a review on Amazon about this toy speaking Spanish and not English, The message was removed!

          Cost:

          We bought ours for a very silly amount of £7 if I remember right; I should have known it was too good to be true!
          I have seen this in Matalan recently for just £5. This is a snatch!
          I have been told they have them in the Entertainer for £5 too.

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            09.12.2009 10:26
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            Great for any baby or toddler christmas box!

            I have bought this forget me not toy for my son for Christmas.
            I am just in the process of putting in the photographs.

            It is made by Tomy and it is basically a mini photo album for babies in the shape of a very colourful butterfly with a cute friendly little face and rubber antennas.

            There are 8 pages where you simply slide in photographs; the pages represent the butterfly's wings. These pages are all different bright colours and each page has a crinkly tab to make it a little easier for babies to turn the pages.

            The front cover has a small round safety mirror.

            I think that the really special thing about this photograph album is that you can record a different voice message for each photograph. This is easy to do, all you need to do is hold down the button and wait for it to bleep, and then you record your message.

            I think this is a lovely gift for a baby, especially if you live far from friends and family, or if your baby goes to childcare in the day, as this can be taken along. As a child care worker, I think this would be fantastic, especially if you have a baby or toddler who is just settling into day care, as it can act as a little comfort for them.

            I cant wait for my baby boy to have this on Christmas day!

            The photo album requires 2 x AAA batteries which are included.
            Recommended from 6 months.

            The Cost:
            I think that this toy is quite expensive, I paid 19.99 from Argos.
            I found out yesterday that there are in the 3 for 2 offer in Boots. I wish I had looked there first.

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            • Twilight [2008] (DVD) / DVD / 51 Readings / 49 Ratings
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              09.12.2009 00:52
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              A good movie, worth a watch.

              I decided to watch this movie as it seems to have caused a new craze, everyone around me seems to be talking about the book or the film and I hadn't got a clue what they were talking about. I don't really get the change to get into a good book; therefore I chose to watch the film instead.

              I suppose the good thing about never reading the book is that I had no expectations whatsoever and I didn't know anything about any of the characters.

              Twilight is the first of four fantasy romance novels written by Stephenie Meyer.

              Because of the amazing popularity of these novels, they have been or are in the process of being turned into movies.

              Twilight the movie version was released last year and the second movie called New Moon, has been released recently.

              Twilight is a 12A rated movie.

              ~~~~~~~~~~

              The Story:
              I am trying not to give too much of the plot away here, however there is not much to tell, I will explain this when I come to writing about my opinion on the movie.

              The story is about a teenage girl called Bella Swan, who moves to a town called Forks in Washington to live with her father who works as a sheriff, as her parents are separated and her mother is going travelling with her new man.

              Bella finds herself getting attention from an admirer who's name is Edward.

              Edward is a bit of an oddball to say the least. He is a bit of a loner, very very handsome and a huge romantic.

              Belle soon discovers that Edward is not quite who he appears to be.
              Bella and Edward end up falling in love, but they encounter a big problem. His name is James, a vampire who has made it his mission to hunt Bella and kill her.

              The story continues with the cat and mouse chase of James trying to catch Bella.

              ~~~~~~~~~~

              My Opinion:
              I felt that this Movie was very slow to begin with; it was more to do with getting to know who the characters are rather than a storyline. I feel that the only real storyline with this film is that we discover Edward is not who he appears to be, that Bella and Edward fall in love and that there is a cat and mouse chase with James and Bella.

              I believe that this movie is entirely about setting the scene for the other films to follow on from and its intention was to get you involved with the characters and understand who they are.

              I did laugh out loud at the blatant fact that Edward was obviously wearing red lipstick and eyeliner. A big movie like this, I would have thought they would have spent a little more of the budget on simple make up effects!

              Although I feel there was no great storyline, it has made me thirsty for more Twilight. I can't wait to see the next one now!

              I'm not really a person who likes films about vampires; however I think that this is in a completely different league to the other vampire movies I have seen. This is not all about the blood and gore, this movie is more about romance and relationships.


              Main Cast:

              Bella Swan
              Kristen Stewart

              Edward Cullen
              Robert Patterson

              Jacob Black
              Taylor Lautner

              Carlisle Cullen
              Peter Facinelli

              Esme Cullen
              Elizabeth Reaser

              Alice Cullen
              Ashley Greene

              Emmett Cullen
              Kellan Lutz

              Rosalie Hale
              Nikki Reed

              Jasper Hale
              Jackson Rathbone




              Cost:
              This DVD is available on play.com for £4.99

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              • Marley & Me (DVD) / DVD / 51 Readings / 49 Ratings
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                08.12.2009 17:41
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                A good watch but get the tissues ready

                Marley and Me was released Christmas 2008, it is a very emotional but also a very funny film about the mischievous dog and his family.

                ~~~~~~~~~~

                The Story:
                The story is about an American couple, John and Jenny Grogan. They move to a beautiful home in Florida, where they have jobs as newspaper reporters for different companies.

                When John realises Jenny is getting broody he turns to a friend for advice who suggests they get a dog. So they choose a cute little white Labrador puppy who is named Marley after Bob Marley.

                Marley turns out to be a very naughty and disobedient puppy; he even gets banned from puppy training because of his behavior.

                John is struggling to find any interesting stories for his newspaper column; therefore he decides to write about the adventures and misbehavior of Marley. This becomes a huge hit with readers!


                ~~~~~~~~~~

                My Opinion:
                I will admit right now that I have never seen the ending of this film as I didnt want to know!

                I think that this movie will relate to dog owners and previous dog owners a lot more than anyone who has never owned a dog, as it truly captures the relationship of a dog and their family.

                I enjoyed this movie, although I have not seen the end, as I feel it is so real to my family life with my dog.

                I have a very mischievous dog myself; she is so much like Marley in her character, even to the point of getting banned from puppy training for misbehaving so much!


                Although it is a very heart felt and emotional movie, I also thought it was very funny indeed. I was literally crying with laughter at a scene where Marley is hanging out of the car window and walking with his paws. It was so very funny.


                The movie has made me change the way I am with my dog. My dog is now 7 and I love her so much, even though she's a little monkey! She has a huge heart and has a great big place within our family.



                ~~~~~~~~~~

                The Cost:
                This DVD is just £5.00 from play.com with free delivery.

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                • Orphan (DVD) / DVD / 48 Readings / 48 Ratings
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                  08.12.2009 15:22
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                  Not for kids!

                  The Orphan, not to get confused with the Orphanage which is an amazing Spanish ghost story. Is a recent horror produced by Jaume Collet-Serra.

                  The Orphan is a 15 rated film, therefore not for the younger audience.

                  ~~~~~~~~~~

                  The Story:
                  The story is about a couple who are struggling to cope with the loss of their unborn child which was to be their third.

                  They decide to adopt a child to fill their gap in their hearts and after visiting a local orphanage decide to adopt a 9 year old Russian girl called Esther.

                  The couple has two children, Maxine who is deaf and uses sign language who accepts Ester and a son Daniel who seems a little jealous of the new sibling.

                  Not long after Esther is accepted into the family, she pushes a little girl who had been teasing her off the top of a slide which breaks her ankle. She is lucky it did not kill her.

                  Maxine saw what Esther did but because she becomes frightened of Esther she sticks up for her by saying that she slipped.

                  After the head of the orphanage pays the family a visit, Esther overhears a conversation about her; she gets revenge with the head of the orphanage for telling her new family that she gets herself into situations like the one with the girl falling from the slide.
                  I won't tell you how else that would spoil the film.

                  The couple eventually find out that the Russian orphanage Esther originally came from has no record of her ever being there.

                  Esther then starts trying to turn the father John against their mother Kate. She fakes an injury on her arm leading John to believe Kate has harmed her.
                  You may need to close your eyes at that part though. I did!

                  Kate eventually discovers that Esther is from a mental institution in Estonia called the Saarne Institute. But her husband doesn't believe her.

                  That same night Esther tries to seduce a drunken John, at which point he realizes that Kate was telling the truth all along.

                  Kate gets a call from the Saarne Institute's who reveals a secret about Esther.
                  I am not going to tell you that secret as that also would spoil the whole storyline.

                  ~~~~~~~~~~

                  My Opinion:
                  This is a very intelligent and well thought up story line. It is a nice change from all of your normal blood and guts horror films like the Saw films.

                  It has a very clever twist and it's not a very scary film, just a good horror.
                  There is one part though which I have already mentioned, which I could not look at, it's where Esther harms herself to pin it onto Kate. All I will say is that she breaks her own arm!

                  12 year old Isabelle Fuhrman who plays Esther is a fantastic actress; she plays the part really well.

                  ~~~~~~~~~~

                  Cast:
                  Peter Sarsgaard John
                  Isabelle Fuhrman Esther
                  CCH Pounder Sister Abigail
                  Jimmy Bennett Daniel
                  Margo Martindale Dr. Browning
                  Karel Roden Dr. Varava
                  Aryana Engineer Max
                  Rosemary Dunsmon Grandma Barbara
                  Jamie Young Brenda


                  ~~~~~~~~~~
                  The Cost:
                  This DVD is available on play.com for £9.99 with free delivery.

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                  • The Polar Express (DVD) / DVD / 29 Readings / 29 Ratings
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                    08.12.2009 14:35
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                    Not a movie I would recommend

                    The Polar Express was released in 2004, it is an amazingly animated movie set in the 1940's with the characters looking real but animated. Tom Hanks plays the conductor on the Polar Express train

                    ~~~~~~~~~~

                    The Story:
                    On Christmas Eve a little boy is waiting in his bedroom for Santa Clause to come, however instead of Santa Clause coming, a magical train pulls up outside. It is called The Polar Express.

                    His adventure begins when the very odd conductor invites the boy onto the train which is heading for the North Pole.

                    On board the Polar Express, there are more children on their way to the North Pole.

                    At one point the Polar Express turns into a roler coaster ride as it goes out of control and ends up sliding across an icy lake.

                    The boy also meets a strange man who lives on the top of the train, as well as the engineer and fireman.

                    When the Polar Express reaches the North Pole the boy visits Santa's workshop, the boy is chosen by Santa Claus to receive the first gift of Christmas, he chooses a little bell which can only be heard by people who believe in Santa and the spirit of Christmas.

                    The children must then return to the Polar Express.
                    When the boy returns home he is sad because he has lost Santa's gift, the bell.

                    On Christmas morning, his sister finds a small present behind the tree, the boy opens it and discovers that it is the bell, it was on the seat of Santa's sleigh. When the boy rings the bell, he and his sister can hear it but because their parents don't believe in Santa Claus they can't hear it.

                    ~~~~~~~~~~

                    My Opinion:
                    I think this is a very strange film.
                    I must admit I don't really understand the movie after watching it once; perhaps I need to watch it again to see if I understand what's going on.
                    I am aware that the homeless man on top of the train is a ghost but I didn't really see the point in that at all.

                    It is a very strange movie indeed, it wasn't one I particularly enjoyed, for some reason the characters seemed distant. I don't think I ever found out the name of the boy either so that didn't help.

                    I wouldn't recommend this film as a good festive family movie; however, it may be worth you watching it to see if you understand it at all. My 5 year old daughter also lost interest quite early into the film.

                    However, the animation is incredible.
                    ~~~~~~~~~~

                    The Cast:
                    * Daryl Sabara as the Boy.
                    * Tom Hanks as the Conductor.
                    * Tom Hanks as the Hobo.
                    * Tom Hanks as the Scrooge Puppet.
                    * Tom Hanks as Santa Claus.
                    * Tom Hanks as the Boy's father.
                    * Nona Gaye as the Girl.
                    * Jimmy Bennett as Billy the not so Lonely Boy.
                    * Eddie Deezen as Lenny the Know-It-All Kid.
                    * Joe Pesci as the Head Elf
                    * Steven Tyler as the Singing Elf.
                    * Michael Jeter as Smokey.
                    * Michael Jeter as Steamer.
                    * Leslie Zemeckis as the Boy's mother.
                    * Isabella Peregrin as Sarah, the Boy's sister.



                    ~~~~~~~~~~

                    The Cost:
                    This DVD is available on play.com for £5.99 with free delivery.

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                    • Deck The Halls [2006] (DVD) / DVD / 31 Readings / 31 Ratings
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                      08.12.2009 01:14
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                      A good comedy

                      I am a big big fan of Christmas films, here's my opinion on yet another festive flick!

                      Deck the Halls is a 2006 festive comedy starring Danny DeVito, who I think is such a funny man!

                      It is a PG rated movie, I wouldn't really call it a family film, in my opinion it's not aimed at children.

                      I have read lots of bad reviews about this film; however, I don't think it's that bad, I think that some bits are very funny indeed.

                      ~~~~~~~~~~

                      The Story:

                      The movie is set in Cloverdale, Massachusetts where Steve Finch the local optician and the villages face of Christmas lives with his family.

                      Steve's perfect Christmas comes to an end when car salesman Buddy Hall, played by Danny DeVito and his family moves into the street.

                      Buddy gets the idea that he wants to put enough lights on his house so that it can be seen from outer space. He gets this idea after his daughters have been on the internet on a made up version of Google earth called MY Earty and they moan that they can't see their house. (They probably couldn't use the Google brand.)

                      There are lots of fun and games as the two head into full on Christmas war!

                      Buddy ends up with his house covered in Christmas lights which are also synchronized to music. Steve is being kept up all night with the bright lights, therefore he seeks revenge buy buying illegal fireworks to fire at Buddy's house.
                      It all backfire and Steve ends up setting fire to his own house.

                      The two families have had enough of their husband's childish Christmas feud and decide to leave them, therefore Buddy and Steve forget their feud, and build a magical walkway home with all of Buddy's lights to lure their family's home.

                      The house is eventually seen from space and Buddy and Steve become friends.

                      ~~~~~~~~~~

                      My opinion:

                      This is not one of the best Christmas films out there, there's no magic and sparkle, however I think that there are some very funny parts in this movie and Danny DeVito plays a great part as always!

                      ~~~~~~~~~~

                      The Cast:

                      Danny DeVito as Buddy Hall
                      * Matthew Broderick as Steve Finch
                      * Kristin Chenoweth as Tia Hall
                      * Kristin Davis as Kelly Finch
                      * Alia Shawkat as Madison Finch
                      * Dylan Blue as Carter Finch
                      * Sabrina Aldridge as Ashley Hall
                      * Kelly Aldridge as Emily Hall
                      * Jorge Garcia as Wallace
                      * Jackie Burroughs as Mrs. Ryor
                      * Fred Armisen as Gustave
                      * Gillian Vigman as Gerta
                      * Jill Krop as Herself
                      * SuChin Pak as Herself
                      * Shannon Ostrom as Bystander
                      * Vu Huynh as Kid Next Door
                      * Kal Penn as MyEarth Specialist (cameo appearance)
                      * Sean O'Bryan as Mayor Young
                      * Gary Chalk as Officer Dave
                      * Nicola Peltz as Mackenzie

                      * ~~~~~~~~~~

                      The Cost:
                      This DVD is available from play.com for £5.00 with free delivery.

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                      • More +
                        08.12.2009 00:41
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                        A great family festive film

                        I have watched this film tonight with the family, it is a very funny but very cheesy Christmas film (Cheesy is good; you can't have enough cheesy films at Christmas!)

                        Christmas with the Kranks was a 2004 film and is based on the 2001 novel Skipping Christmas by John Grisham.

                        It is one of those very festive funny family films to watch with a nice bowl of popcorn and a snuggle on the sofa.

                        My 5 year old daughter thought it was funny and she was amazed by the little bit o Christmas magic at the end. But I'm keeping that bit a secret, you will have to watch it to find out.

                        The trouble was, we watched The Santa Clause the other night, now she thinks Tim Allen is Santa Clause, and because Tim Allen plays Luther Krank, she asked,
                        "Mommy why is Santa in this film." I laughed and said it was his brother! (A little white lye never hurt anyone.)

                        ~~~~~~~~~~

                        The Story:

                        The story is about the Krank family.
                        The mom and dad, Luther and Nora Krank are very sad to wave off their only daughter Blair at the airport. She is leaving them over Christmas work with the peace core in Peru.

                        Luther and Nora are not looking forward to Christmas without Blair.
                        Whilst out shopping in the pouring rain, Luther spots an advertisement in a shop for a Caribbean cruise.

                        He then calculates all of the money they spent on Christmas last year and persuades Norah that they should skip Christmas and spend all of the money on the Caribbean cruise instead.

                        Whilst attempting to skip Christmas Luther and Norah become outcasts in their own street, as the neighbors turn against their idea of skipping Christmas!

                        Whilst Luther and Norah are packing their cases for the cruise when Blair phones them to tell them that she's on her way home with her new fiancé to spend Christmas with them.

                        Norah panics and decides to cancel the cruise and get Christmas back up and running, this leads to lots of fun and games!

                        There is a funny scramble in the supermarket over the last Ham on the shelf, which is Blaire's favourite food.

                        All of the neighbors are bought together and decide to help Luther and Nora create their perfect Christmas once again. They all pull together and decorate the house and get all of the party food ready for a big Christmas Eve party at the Kranks just in time for Blaire's return.

                        It is a very happy ending but I'm not going to write about the end as I don't want to spoil it!

                        ~~~~~~~~~~

                        My favourite parts:

                        I really feel I should let you know about my favourite parts of the film as I was in fits of laughter at both of these bits.

                        Luther has the great idea that he and Norah should get themselves a tan before Christmas, therefore he books himself and Norah into a tanning salon in the local, Mall, however after Norah manages to squeeze herself into a tiny bikini and manages to cut her head by bumping it on the sunbed, she goes into reception to ask for a plaster.
                        However, the reception is open to the whole Mall, and who should be standing outside the salon but their local Vicar! All Norah has to cover her dignity is the tiny bikini and a towel not much bigger than a face cloth!

                        My other favourite part is simple yet amusing. Blair's fiancé's name is Enrique, but when they are collected from the airport, the police escort who have been sent to collect them have written on their card - Blair and N'Reeky! Simple but very funny!

                        ~~~~~~~~~~

                        The Cast:

                        * Tim Allen - Luther Krank
                        * Jamie Lee Curtis - Nora Krank
                        * Julie Gonzalo - Blair Krank
                        * Dan Aykroyd - Vic Frohmeyer
                        * M. Emmet Walsh - Walt Scheel
                        * Elizabeth Franz - Bev Scheel
                        * Erik Per Sullivan - Spike Frohmeyer
                        * Cheech Marin - Officer Salino
                        * Jake Busey - Officer Treen
                        * Austin Pendleton - Marty
                        * Tom Poston - Father Zabriskie
                        * René Lavan - Enrique Decardenal
                        * Patrick Breen - Aubie
                        * Caroline Rhea - Candi
                        * Felicity Huffman - Merry
                        *

                        ~~~~~~~~~~

                        The Cost:

                        This DVD is available from Play.com for £5.00 with free delivery.

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                          04.12.2009 01:08
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                          You have to go there to feel the magic

                          This is review number 100, so I thought I would write about my favourite place in the whole wide world, Main Street USA in Disney Land Paris!

                          I visited Disneyland Resort Paris at Christmas time a couple of years ago and Main Street USA, what can I say, it is the closest thing you can get to being in a fairytale!

                          I remember getting very emotional the first time I walked into Main Street, it was night time and the street was lined with flagpoles all lit up with Christmas icicle lights and stood at the very top was Sleeping Beauty's castle also decorated with dazzling snowflake bright Christmas lights.

                          It took my breath away it looked so amazing, even if it was a grotty old rainy night.

                          Main Street is what I would call the gateway; you must pass through Main Street to get access into all of the other themed lands.

                          It is packed with shops, cafes and restaurants either side, and it even has a little arcade style passage way which also has cafes, restaurants and shops.

                          We stopped at one little café for a hot chocolate, as it gets very very cold in Paris in December! We had a delicious hot chocolate with a novelty mug which we got to keep.

                          There is also a train station situated above Main Street for the Disney train which stops at all of the different lands in Disneyland, which you can hop on and off. We never used the train, I'm not really sure why, we were probably too excited, and loved walking through Main Street too much!

                          We loved to walk down Main Street, not just because it looked so nice but because every now and again, you hear bells ring in Main Street and all of a sudden it starts to snow (it is very fine bubbles, however it is that good, it really does look like real snow.)

                          The character parades which are themed floats which are full of disney characters also passed down Main Street and the character express, which was a train all decked out with Christmas decoration carrying much loved characters.

                          I loved this place so much and so did my husband and daughter who was 3 at the time. We are saving our pennies to go next year again.

                          If you are considering a trip to Disney Land Paris, I would give this advice. Go at Christmas time, it's so magical!, don't go in school holidays or weekends.

                          I know it's not that good for children to have the time off from school, but it is well worth it. When comparing trips with friends, they have told me how packed the place was, where as we found it not too bad. We were also just walking straight onto rides!

                          Go for at least 3 days so you haven't got to rush around too much.
                          Also plan your visit each day when you know the times of everything, I know it seems too much hassle, but you get to do everything without missing out!

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                            03.12.2009 18:03
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                            Get baking its Christmas

                            I have posted this recipe before, when reviewing store bought mince pies, however I have realised this is the perfect place to post this nice winter warming mince pie recipe. (I realise it doesnt matter I have repeated it, as I get no dooyoo miles for this review!)

                            I do cheat; I buy the pastry from the shops ready made! I said I like to make my own, I didn't say I was the new Nigela!

                            Ingredients:

                            * In my case store bought pastry, but feel free to make your own if you know how.

                            * 540g mincemeat ( this is on offer in Asda, two jars for £1.50
                            for the really good stuff)
                            * Orange zest
                            * Couple of tablespoons of Brandy
                            * Pinch of cinnamon
                            * 50ml milk
                            * 1 egg, beaten
                            * 50g caster sugar
                            * Butter for greasing tin
                            Optional:
                            * Handful of roast chestnuts
                            * Handful of dried cranberries

                            How to make them:

                            1. Heat the oven to 220C/400F/Gas 6.

                            2. Mix the mincemeat together with the orange zest, brandy and cinnamon.

                            3. Lightly grease the tins with butter.

                            4. Roll out the pastry as thinly as possible. Cut out approximately 12 rounds with a pastry cutter (most pastry cutters have two sides, one with a greater diameter than the other, use the larger side for the base and the smaller for the lids) and place them in the base of your tins.

                            5. Prick all the pie bases with a fork to stop them rising. Fill each case with about 3 teaspoons of the mincemeat mix. You could also add some roast chestnuts and dried cranberries at this point for extra Christmas yumminess. Don't overfill or they will leak!

                            6. Brush the pie edges with a little bit of milk or egg whites.

                            7. Stamp out another 12 rounds, using the larger end of your cutter, for the lids and place over the mincemeat mix. You could also cut out a little holly leaf or star shape and place that onto too for a little Christmas spirit.

                            8. Pinch the pie edges together to seal. Brush over with egg whites and prick the tops with a fork. Bake in the oven for approx 20 minutes until golden brown.

                            9. Remove from oven and allow to cool.

                            10. Sprinkle a little icing sugar on top.

                            11. Eat whilst still warm!

                            Happy baking!

                            Summary: Get cooking! Get the kids involved they will love it! Esp if you bake one for the big fella himself!

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                            • Aston & Parsons / Baby Health / 28 Readings / 28 Ratings
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                              03.12.2009 17:49
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                              Try these to soothe a teething baby, they are worth a try

                              Aston and Parsons Infants Powders are a pack of 20 individually wrapped powders.

                              They are a herbal product which can be used for the symptomatic relief of pain and gastric upset associated with teething in babies.

                              The powders are also recommended to help ease the symptoms which may be associated with colic and gripe.

                              The formula is used to check stomach disorders and relieve your babys restlessness and fretfulness and to sooth them.

                              ~~~~~~~~~~
                              The Container:

                              The powders are all individually wrapped in a strong waterproof type paper, the powder is folded into the paper, therefore they are easy to unwrap and slide into your babys mouth.

                              The box is quite small, it is white cardboard and has the appearance of being very old fashioned.

                              It has a black and white picture of a baby lying down, it has a blue box outline, with Ashton and Parsons Infants' Powders written in large capital letters across the top.

                              It then has small writing giving information about the product, filling the rest of the box.

                              ~~~~~~~~~~~~
                              Directions for use:

                              Babies under 6 months can have half a powder and babies over 6 months can have one full powder.

                              The powder is administered dry on the tongue, it is recommended night and morning, however I give it as and when required, that is when my baby is dribbling lots, crying with his hands in his mouth or gnawing on everything very hard.

                              If your baby is restless, you can give the powders again every 1, 2 or 3 hours if necessary until improvement occurs.

                              ~~~~~~~~~~
                              My Experience:

                              I bought these powders as my baby boy was dribbling a lot, which I am aware is one of the first signs of teething. He is also frantically biting on everything he can get his hands on.

                              When he has seemed to be dribbling more than usual or being a bit grizzly whilst biting down, I have given him a powder.

                              The recommendation is only half for a baby under 6 months, however my baby is 5 months but he is a big boy! Also I have no concerns as it also states on the powders: "Mothers may enjoy ease of mind in the knowledge that these powders contain nothing harmful." (A little politically incorrect there however. Oops!)

                              They are very simple to administer, all you need to do is open up the paper and slide the powders onto your baby's tongue.
                              Don't get me wrong, I have had the odd occasion where I have ended up wearing the powder when my son has been throwing his arms around!

                              My little boy loves them, he stops crying straight away after they have hit his tongue, he immediately starts moving his tongue backwards and forwards to taste them.

                              I think that they are a miracle product, my baby boy seems so much more settled after he has had some powders, he also seems to gnaw less and dribble a lot less.

                              I have even found his first tooth this week. It seems to have cut through with hardly any trouble at all. I thank these powders.

                              I have also given my son these powders when he has had tummy ache, and it seems to sooth that a little too, as he is relieved soon after, it may be coincidence, however I think it is the powders.

                              I would recommend these powders to anyone with a teething baby, they are defiantly worth a try, they can't do any harm, and they can also be used with medicine as they are herbal powders.

                              It does state on the pack that if symptoms persist for more than 5 days, consult your doctor, I presume this is for other symptoms rather than teething, I'm sure you would agree that babies usually teeth for longer than 5 days!

                              ~~~~~~~~~~~~
                              Ingredients:

                              Each powder contains:
                              Tincture of Metrication 0.002ml in a lactose base.

                              It states on the powder papers that, the powders are charged soley with a preparation of a selected part of the plant Matricaria, they do not contain Calomel or other Mercury compounds.

                              ~~~~~~~~~~~~
                              Cost:

                              I got mine from my local chemist for £2.49 for this pack of 20 powders. They are also available from Boots for £2.53

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                                03.12.2009 12:36
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                                A very good product for babies weaning

                                Heinz Farley's Rusks original have been around for a very long time!, They are dry circular twice-baked bread, biscuit type snack which are aimed towards babies, however the packet now states - All ages, therefore they are for everyone.

                                ~~~~~~~~~~
                                The Container:

                                The rusks come in a brown box (The packaging must have changed since the picture on here.)

                                It has the Heinz logo on the front with Farley's rusks original written below.

                                There is a picture of a rusk and a cartoon character teddy bear holding a bottle of milk. He has a speech bubble coming from his head which says mash with milk.

                                On one side there is advice for usage and on the other side is all of the nutritional information and ingredients.

                                Inside the box itself are the rusks are stacked up tall and are in an easy to open silver foil sealed wrapper.


                                ~~~~~~~~~~

                                Rusks are an ideal weaning food for babies, as they turn into a soft paste when mixed with warm milk or water. They can also be added to thicken up vegetable or fruit purees.

                                My 5 month old baby loves these at lunch time mashed up with warm milk, he is able to take it off the spoon really well and smacks his chops for more.

                                Rusks are also ideal as a first finger food as they dissolve in the baby's mouth, they are also ideal as little snacks when out and about.
                                Rusks contain Iron and Calcium, they contain added vitamins A and D and contain no artificial colours, preservative or flavours.

                                Each Rusk contains 20% of baby's iron requirement for a day.
                                They contain gluten and wheat.

                                The only problem I have is that they don't last five minutes in my house, although I'm not a fan of the taste myself, my 5 year old daughter and my husband, love them. I have to keep telling them off for eating them all!

                                The only other problem I find with this is that they make a right old soggy mess! It is easily cleaned up though with a couple of baby wipes.

                                ~~~~~~~~~~
                                Ingredients:

                                Wheat Flour, Sugar, Vegetable Oil, Raising Agents (Ammonium Carbonates), Calcium Carbonate, Emulsifier (Monoglycerides), Niacin, Iron, Thiamin, Riboflavin, Vitamin A, Vitamin D

                                ~~~~~~~~~~
                                Nutritional Information:

                                Taken from Heinz website.

                                Energy (kcal) 411 70
                                Protein 7g 1.2g
                                Carboydrate 79.5g 13.5g
                                (of which, sugars) 29.0g 4.9g
                                Fat 7.2g 1.2g
                                (of which, saturates)3.1g 0.5g
                                Fibre 2.1g 0.4g
                                Sodium 0.01g 0.002g
                                Vitamin A 450ug 113 77ug 19
                                Vitamin D 10ug 100 1.7ug 17
                                Thiamin 0.53mg 106 0.09mg 18
                                Riboflavin 0.82mg 103 0.14mg 17
                                Niacin 8.8mg 98 1.5mg 17
                                Calcium 390mg 98 66mg 17
                                Iron 7.0mg 117 1.2mg 20


                                Cost:
                                I paid £1.97 for a pack of 18 from Asda, I would consider these quite expensive

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                                  03.12.2009 12:00
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                                  A great snack to keep you going

                                  Wotsits have been around for many years, they were once made by Golden Wonder, however they were took over by Walkers in 2002.

                                  Wotsits come in a metallic blue packet with the words, Baked Wotsits written on the front. There is a small picture of the potato snacks on the front.

                                  Wotsits are a puffed cheese snack, they are short orange sticks which are slightly bent.

                                  I personally love Wotsits, I think they have a very strong cheesy taste, and smell!

                                  I love the way they seem to melt as they hit your tongue.

                                  They have less calories than many other potato snacks and crisps.

                                  I remember when they used to stain my fingers bright orange, this must have been when artificial colourings were added. I do not get this problem anymore, as I believe paprika is used to colour the puffs.

                                  ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
                                  Ingredients:

                                  Maize , Vegetable Oil , Cheese Flavour [Cheese Powder (7%), Lactose (from Milk), Flavour Enhancer (Disodium 5' Ribonucleotide) , Colours (Paprika Extract, Annatto), Natural Flavourings] , Salt , Potassium Chloride .

                                  ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

                                  Nutritional Values (100g)

                                  Energy 397 kJ 2270 kJ
                                  95 kcal 545 kcal
                                  Protein 1.0 g 5.5 g
                                  Carbohydrate 9.8 g 56.0 g
                                  of which sugars 1.5 g 8.5 g
                                  Fat 5.8 g 33.0 g
                                  of which saturates 0.7 g 4.0 g
                                  Fibre 0.2 g 1.1 g
                                  Sodium* 0.14 g 0.78g
                                  *Equivalent as Salt 0.35 g 1.98 g

                                  ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

                                  Cost:
                                  These can be purchased from asda in multipacks for £1.28 or you can buy 3 multi packs for £3.00

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