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Time to Prune the Buddleia Wow reader of the month

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since 23/09/2002


Ravensburger My First Puzzles Travel Far 27/03/2017

First puzzles help- your child travel far.

Ravensburger My First Puzzles Travel Far This Ravensburger Travel far puzzle box includes 4 puzzles. This box of puzzles was one we had at work (special needs school.) I have just retired and am trying to review many of the toys we had. ++Packaging These puzzles are in a blue box made from strong cardboard. This has pictures of each of the puzzles on it. The box is quite durable. We had to sellotape the corners together eventually but considering this was in a classroom environment it did well. ++Made from These puzzles are made from strong cardboard. ++ Age suitability This box of 4 puzzles is suitable for children aged 18 months and over dependant on their ability ++Pieces These pieces are quite thick and strong. Each puzzle has a different number of pieces they are 2 pieces, a green steam train, 3 pieces a red bus 4 pieces is an orange tractor or 5 pieces a yellow train. The pieces all have male female co-joining. I like the fact that each puzzle has different number of pieces; it shouldn't take long for your child to master the 2 piece puzzle and progress to putting the 3, 4 or 5 piece puzzle together. ++ Size Each puzzle measures about 11.5 x 16.5 cm ++Pictures The pictures are aimed at younger children the vehicles and people in them a bit simplistic and babyfied. The 2 piece puzzle is a green steam train engine on a track. Behind the engine is a yellow green field scene with mountains rising behind it topped with a blue sky. The driver in his blue uniform is waveing out of his window The 3 ...

Ghost Deep Night Soothing & Moisturising Body Lotion 26/03/2017

Ghost Deep night creamy lotion

Ghost Deep Night Soothing & Moisturising Body Lotion I was tidying my cupboard and found the 390ml tube of Deep Night body lotion not finished yet the Eau de toilet used ages ago. I was given a gift set of Deep night eau de toilet and the` moisturising body lotion a couple of years ago. Ghost fragrances made in France are owned by P&G Prestige Beaute. . ~~>About Ghost Beute make several different fragrances in the Ghost range. These are Ghost girl, White light, Sweetheart, Eclipse, Luminous and Deep night. I like many of these Ghost fragrances. . I have just tried to find this product on line and I found that there were only a few sites selling this product. This body lotion is/was available in a 250 ml bottle or the 50ml tube that I have, I believe that the 50ml tube is/was usually sold as a duo product with a perfume I believe this duo gift set now contains the eau de perfume and a candle not the body lotion. ~~> Price For 250ml body lotion bottle 250 mls for £18.00 For a duo set containing a 5oml tube and a crescent shaped bottle of deep night eau de cologne see:- £14.95 I notice several cheaper 50 ml tubes available on eBay ~~> Packaging The 250 quantity comes in a chunky clear plastic bottle with a black cap. It does not look anything special. The 50ml tube looks better. It is a black tube with silvery white writing; this has a ...

Hape Hand Digger 24/03/2017

Hape hand digger scoops sand.

Hape Hand Digger Hape Hand Digger We had several of these Hape hand diggers at the special needs school where I worked. -{ Age suitability These hand diggers suitable for children over the age of 18 months up to around 6 years old. -(Colours These hand diggers come in yellow, blue or green. -(Made of Made of durable BPA free plastic -{ Size This scoop, digger measures 12 x 20 x 5 cm. The space on the grip handle is quite small so older larger hands find grasping this scoop difficult. An adult hand will be able to put 2 or 3 fingers through the handle -{Use This hand digger is ideal for the indoor sand tray. To dig and scoop wet or dry sand, oats, pasta, soil, rice. Better for indoor group play than a traditional spade as it does not have a long handle. Can also be used on the beach. If the scoop is dragged along the sand surface it makes a good track. This hand digger is quite easy for little hands to grasp. Its curved shape means that it will hold a fair amount of sands or other dry sensory play materials. It's good for both loading with sand and digging holes. I have supervised many children playing with this toy bust digging holes or filling buckets and other receptacles. This Hape hand digger has many educational benefits; it enables practice of these motor skills developing their muscles, good for eye hand coordination and concentration (you should see their little faces concentrating on filling a play bucket. Also good for the imagination the children pretend they are ...

Fisher Price Blaze and the Monster Machines Metallic Blaze 24/03/2017

A Metalic Blaze monster machine.

Fisher Price Blaze and the Monster Machines Metallic Blaze Metallic Blaze Monster Machine Looking for another toy to review I came across this Metallic Blaze Monster Machine. I remember when I visited a friend her grandchildren were playing with this toy, it was in their nanny's house toy box. This vehicle is from a programme called Blaze and the Monster Machines. I know virtually nothing about this programme. Apparently there are 9 monster trucks in this programme. Age suitability Suitable for a 3 year old and over Manufacturer This Monster machine is made by Fisher Price The machine This is a die cast metallic red monster truck with yellow flame designs on either side. Blaze has the headlights looking like eyes and the radiator grill a mouth. Looks a very friendly machine has two grey front seats and a truck space behind. The wheels are large chunky black ones with yellow hubs as you might expect for an off road all terrain vehicles. There is some good springy suspension giving the vehicle a bit of bounce when it travels and allows the child to push it down slightly and to go over on its side slightly. Yes Blaze looks attractive. Also Available Other Blaze vehicles are available and maybe a bit more exciting as they have wings which come out also has batteries and a few phrases =Size This is not a monster, monster truck it measures 7.5cm in length, 6cm in width and 6cm in height, a good size for a little hand. =Play/education I watched my friends 3 and 4 year old grandchildren playing with this Blaze truck. It ran well ...

What are the main changes do you plan to do for Spring? 23/03/2017

Reawakening , cleansing and rejuvenation

What are the main changes do you plan to do for Spring? Q. What are the main changes do you plan to do for spring? A, "I was ready for spring its beauty changes Changes everything done hibernating" Quote from a song 2015 by My Morning jacket an American band Spring is the season for reawakening for cleansing and rejuvenation. Spring starts Monday 20 March and ends on Wednesday 21 June So what changes do I intend to make this spring? Well there are no big lifestyle changes in sight; no house moves, no weddings or divorces, no new babies. Having retired a year ago, no new jobs on the horizon So no big changes. My mother (back in the 50's and 60s) always did a major spring clean, No need in modern times for major spring cleaning admittedly once the sun daylight comes through the windows I can see the dust and cobwebs a bit better. Once we have stopped needing an open fire to help us keep warm I shall book a chimney sweep. With spring here now I have come out of hibernation, am not sitting in front of the TV or the computer for so many hours. The garden has lured me out. The garden is changing, snowdrops and most of the crocus dead or dying daffodils in full bloom, primroses brightening up dull corners. Looking around the garden for changes in the planting that I want for next spring there's a patch without colour a few daffs and yellow primroses needed/wanted here so will plant some later. Other than annual vegetable growing and pruning trees. I shall not be making major changes to the garden, no redesigning, no new ...

Lego Minecraft 21122 The Nether Fortress 22/03/2017

Obsessed with Minecraft , build a Fortess

Lego Minecraft 21122 The Nether Fortress This Lego Mine craft Nether Fortress is the gift we gave our granddaughter for her 11th Birthday, she had requested it. This set first available in w2015. Suitable for children over 8 years old Just in case anyone does not know Mine craft is a computer game about adventures and placing locks, building and knocking down. Lego blocks seem the logical toy to build Mine craft models with. . The Mine craft is a game about placing blocks and going on adventures comes in a card box strong enough for storing the bricks in after they have been dismantled. ###Pieces There are 571 Lego pieces in this set including Steve, Alex and a Zombie Pig man, plus a Blaze and a Ghast ###Building My granddaughter did not make this model in one sitting she had several attempts at completing it. So I can not say how long it took her. Fortunately Sh had a tray to make this model on and there is a wide flat surface out of the way (windowsill) so she did not have to keep packing the fort away .I assisted minimally in the building of this Lego model just positioning a few bricks (and giving praise) Included in the box is a paper plan of the design which is fairly easy to follow. There are 2 plans one a straight building one L shaped. My granddaughter at the age of 11 has good motor skills; her visual skills and eye hand coordination are fine. Her ability to follow instructions fine as long as she wants to. Her concentration is ok. These are some of the basic skills that are practiced making any Lego ...

The Three Crutches, Strood 18/03/2017

Who needs three crutches ?

The Three Crutches, Strood When we visited Canterbury we decided to come home (Bucks) late afternoon /early evening and since we knew the M25 around London would possibly be a nightmare we decided we would have something to eat around 6.30pm and start our battle around London at 7.30 or 8 pm when the traffic would hopefully be lighter. ##location. We consulted the internet and map and found a pub and Restaurant called the three crutches in a reasonable location with fair reviews. The Three crutches are in the Village of Hingham near Strood. ##The name I was curious about the name "The Three Crutches" and discovered it came because near this spot one of the Templar knights was murdered and 3 crosses positioned on a triangular monument where 3 roads joined. The name is thought originally to be the three 'crootches' the local dialect way of saying crosses. The name then changed in later years to the three crutches. ##The pub There is an outdoor seating area with a few children's activities. I did not notice these because it was dark when we got there. The pub from the outside looks a good traditional building. There seemed adequate parking spaces We went into the back bar this is where the restaurant is. This bar seems lower than the smaller front bar think it is built on a hill. The back bar was a large space with lots of tables to seat either 2, 4,6 or 8 people while we were there to accommodate a large group tables were moved. This bar did not really have a lot of character, it was fine but it ...

Melissa & Doug Dinosaurs Puzzles in a Box 16/03/2017

There's Dinosaurs in this box

Melissa & Doug Dinosaurs Puzzles in a Box We had many Mellissa and Doug toys at work (special needs school) they are usually well thought out and well made and durable. Melissa and Doug is an American company which has been going for 20 years or so. Today I shall be reviewing the Melissa & Doug Dinosaurs Puzzles in a Box ~~Age suitability This box of puzzles suitable for a child over 3. The pictures not babyfied so fine for older children. Suitable for both home and school ideal if doing a dinosaur project ~~Box The 17.5cm x 12 cm wooden box has 4 equal compartment in which the puzzle pieces fit. The box has a slide on wooden lid, on which you can make the puzzle, The lid makes a good surface to make the puzzle on, The wooden box is quite strong ideal for storing the puzzles in on the classroom cupboard or on the display shelf. This box makes these puzzles ideal for taking on holiday for a child's down time activity. ~~Puzzle There are 4 dinosaur puzzles in this box each puzzle measures 17.145 x 11.5 cm. Each puzzle has 12 pieces. The pieces each have a male or female conjoining piece. Children are able to pick up and fit the pieces fairly easily. The pieces are quite chunky. To help you sort the puzzle pieces each dinosaur has a different shape code on the back of its puzzle pieces, The puzzles feature either a T-Rex Apatosaurus. Triceratops or Stegosaurus, These pictures are quite bright and attractive each dinosaur pictured on a background of lake rocks, sky. Trees. The dinosaurs are different colours ...

I Can't Stay Long - Laurie Lee 14/03/2017

He couldn't stay long

I Can't Stay Long - Laurie Lee You may know Laurie Lee born 1914 as the author of Cider with Rosie, Today I shall be reviewing another of is books "I can't stay long"" I actually own an old copy of this, not sure were I got it from. The book I can't stay long was first published in 1975. This book rather than a complete story is a collection of short essays. Articles which at the time he wrote them were discarded. ~~I can't stay long a book of 230 pages has three parts. One, two and three. The essays are in a logical date order starting with True adventures of the boy reader. A tale of the beginning and development of his passion of books and writing. About his school life, until he began work at the age of 15. Although he was a few years younger than my grandparents a lot of the books he mentioned I remember from their bookshelf. The other stories in section 1 include "Whitsuntide Treat," "Eight year old world, " "A drink with a witch," "first love," "an obstinate Exile" all from is early years before he left home at the age of 19 He then lived in London for a while before exploring the world. Part two includes the essays "Love" "Appetite" " charm", "Paradise, "The Firstborn," " The village that lost its children" All tales of his maturity his falling in love ,his first born son. Then the essay on the village of Aberfan in Wales those oldsters among us remember this tragedy in 1966, (I was just 12) How the coal slag heap swamped the school and village of Aberfan. This story tells of visiting a year ...

Hape Wooden Little Auto 13/03/2017

Is it a car, as sports car or a hippy van?

Hape Wooden Little Auto The Hape Wooden Little Auto was made near the Ningbo-Zhoushan Harbor in china it traveled to the special needs school where I worked. Here it was received by staff who presented it to the children. Children played with these with varying degrees of enthusiasm and the autos provided many play and learning opportunities. o---o Size These autos are about 5.4 x 10 x 6cm a good size for a little hand to hold. o---o Age suitability These Autos are suitable for a child of 10 months to a year and upwards. For an older special needs child they are not especially babyish design. Suitable for both home and educational establishment. o---o Colours design These autos are available in red, blue, and yellow or green. The Blue one and the green one have a chequered board effect design on the side of the auto. The red and yellow on have little stars or flowers on the side of them, we had both these designs at school I think one design probably the flowers an older design .I think the flower design make it look like a hippy's car. o---o The auto; This toy loosely described as a motor vehicle can be any vehicle your child likes to imagine. It could be the family car, the taxi, a sports car. It is a flat 3 D shape with 4 wheels. These cars are quite sleek and elegant. Each one has a rounded front to the car. The two cars with the chequered markings have a flat rear boot area the other 2 are rounded. This to me makes the ones with the chequered markings look more like racing cars. All 4 ...

Coreopsis 12/03/2017

I can not find my coreopsis crown in the garden .

Coreopsis Spring has sprung, the grass has riz, No wonder were Mary is She is in the garden, that's not absurd Its that time of year, haven't you heard It's that time of year again, time for sowing time, time for planting preparing, for crops to eat and flowers to bloom and brighten up the garden. In this review I shall be talking about Coreopsis sometimes called Tickseed. It's called tick seed because the seed looks like a tick (A tick is a pear shaped parasite that sucks blood most common on sheep) The Coreopsis is a member of the Astraea family. The There are many species of Coreopsis it is a native wild flower of the United States. Anyway I was tidying up my garden but no signs of coreopsis leaves in the area where I thought there should be some , maybe I am a bit too early , or maybe this is the year they have died. Coreopsis is a perennial should last for many years. ~***~ Size Depending on the species Coreopsis can grow anything from Under 6 inches to 3 feet tall and wide ~***~Leaves The Coreopsis makes quite a bushy plant .The leaves are green and feathery and ferny delicate and attractive The leaves of the Coreopsis turn brown and disappear in the winter leaving a crown just under the soil. (The crown is the base of the plant where the stems join the root. roots grow down and stems grow up from here) ~***~Flowers .The flowers are daisy like some yellow some with orange or pink flowers. I like the yellow bloomed species. Some have single flowers others more showy ...

Hape Little Bus 09/03/2017

A little red wooden bus

Hape Little Bus Hape Little Red Bus This little red bus is one we had at work (special needs school) (It's Still there I expect I retired last year) ))*Age suitability Suitable for baby from about 10 months. ))* What is it? Well simply a little red bus a wooden (Made from birch, maple and rubber wood) 2D bus measuring 12.4 x 7.2 x 6.4 cm. This bus has 2 wooden wheels which rotate. This toy is simple shape the bus body is like a semi ellipse curved wit rounded ends. There are 4 natural coloured wooden wheels fitted to the straight edged base. Around the top of the bus there are 3 holes one, the central one larger than the other 2 smaller. They are a good size for children's fingers to poke through, my adult finger just, goes through the larger hole. This bus is really quite attractive. Has no real bus distinctive features so could be called a car , in fact often is at work. ))*Play /Education This is nice and bright and when I have shown offered it to one of my students they would reach across and grasp it (as a baby might) Thus encouraging motor control, hand eye control. This bus is good for spatial awareness. I have seen children just grasp and clutch the bus just holding it. This toy is smooth. I have seen children holding this toy and just turning the wheels round and round. I have watched children just simply pushing this little bus backwards and forwards. I have seen slightly more able children use this bus along with other toy vehicles on a road track; ok these children are ...

ELC Fire Engine Lift Out Puzzle 08/03/2017

ELC puzzle featuring ... a fire engine

ELC Fire Engine Lift Out Puzzle Early Learning Centre Fire Engine Lift out puzzle. Getting fed up with so many of my suggestions to ciao getting rejected I trawled the Early learning toy category and lo and behold I found a jigsaw puzzle which we had at work(special needs school) We had quite a few Early learning centre toys as they are usually educational well made and durable. The puzzle which I will be reviewing today is the Early Learning Centre Fire Engine Lift out puzzle. }} Early learning centre The ELC is one of the UK’s biggest toy shops with a presence in the high street, or out of town retail parks and on line at The first shop opening in the mid 70's I can not remember toys from here when I was training in 72 but I can a few years later. Sadly I can not find anything on the E, L, C website about where they get the wood from, is it from a sustainable forest? Are the products they use making these toys environmentally friendly? However I read on the ELC website that "All our toys meet and exceed all British and European standards for toy safety" }} Age suitability Suitable for 2 years old . The picture is more suitable for the 2-7 age range not really for my older special needs students it's a bit babyish. }} Description of the Early Learning Centre Fire Engine Lift out puzzle. This is a wooden puzzle board with rounded corners; it's about 8mm thick. It about 20.5cms x 29.5cms. The background of the fire engine picture is the natural wood the picture of the fire ...

Do you see your garden as a haven, a labour of love or a chore to keep on top of? 08/03/2017

My garden nature reserve

Do you see your garden as a haven, a labour of love or a chore to keep on top of? Do you see your garden as a haven, a labour of love or a chore to keep on top of? My answer to the question "Do you see your garden as a haven, a labour of love or a chore to keep on top of?" is that I see my garden as a haven, hopefully the wildlife that I try to encorage thinks the same. My story begins in my childhood (1950's /60's) where I lived in a small village with a father that loved gardening and wildlife. I had my own garden patch. Now much older and several changes of abode I have my own house and garden which I garden for wildlife. My garden it's not huge but large enough for lawn, pond flower borders and veg patch. Going back to the late 70's early 80's before gardening for wildlife became popular I was gardening for wildlife. I have never used herbicides or pesticides. Trying to create a garden that would attract wildlife, ~~~~All life needs water so one of the first things we did when moving to this garden was to dig a pond (hard work in chalk soil) we used a sheet of Butyl liner. I love my pond and so do the frogs. Just now the pond is a heaving mass of humping frogs and spawn. No fish in my pond but sadly for the frogs we have lots of newts (they will eat tadpoles) so one of our tasks is to catch newts we then take them to the local canal to live happily. A pond is a haven for all sorts of water life I love to watch whirly gig beetles swimming round in mad circles. When I was at work (just retired now) I used to like to get a cup of tea and sit by ...

Wright's Right Guard Xtreme 06/03/2017

Xtremley good at making me right clean

Wright's Right Guard Xtreme Wright's right guard xtreme comers in antiperspirants and shower gels. I have the Right guard shower gel extreme energy burst other "flavours " of extreme shower gels include Fresh or cool, ~+~Packaging This shower gel comes in a clear, slim plastic bottle. It has a flat base so it will stand on a shelf. The lid is black with an amber bubble top; the label has all the important info on it. ~+~ Contents There are 250g of shower gel in this bottle. ~+~ Ingredients Aqua, Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Glycerin, Polyquaternium-7, Parfum, PEG-7 Glyceryl Cocoate, Sodium Chloride, Propylene Glycol, Citric Acid, Linalool, Geraniol, Butylphenyl Methylpropional, Eugenol, Sodium Benzoate, Tetrasodium EDTA, Benzophenone-4, CI 16035, CI 19140, CI 15985 ~+~ Colour Amber, this is a lovely glowing orange colour looks attractive in the clear bottle. ~+~Smell I am immediately alerted to the smell of this shower gel it's strong. A clean fresh sharp smell quite astringent. Suitable for both men and women ~+~Use I get my body wet then flip open the bottle top. I squeeze some gel onto my hand or sponge. The liquid is quite thick it pours easily. I continue to wash my body I use about the same amount of shower gel as I usually do with other shower gels This Right Guard xtreme shower gel lathers well. It cleans my skin well feels soft clean and fresh, smells clean and fresh too, so I would not use if I was showering before a romantic night would choose something more ...
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