Share this page on

red Status red (Level 5/10)



No member profile available. The person you are looking for is no longer a Ciao member.

Reviews written

since 30/11/-0001


War Of The Worlds (DVD) 10/01/2006

humans v aliens

War Of The Worlds (DVD) When I heard the War of the worlds featured Tom Cruise and was about the earth being invaded by aliens, I was quite keen to see it. However, I thought it would be an independence day kind of film where Tom Cruise was a scientist/army officer/all action hero who would help to save the earth and still have time to crack a joke and kiss his wife. War of the Worlds was completely different to what I had imagined. It is based on the 1898 H.G Wells book, I've not read the book so I'm not sure how true the film is to the book. Ray Ferrier (Tom Cruise) is a blue collar dock worker in New Jersey, so that was my first surprise no glamorous super hero profession for Mr Cruise in this film. He lives a bit of a sloppy life and has out of date food in his fridge. He is dad to Robbie (Justin Chatwin) and Rachael (Dakota Fanning) . Their mother (Miranda Otto) is married again to a more upwardly mobile husband. Robbie is a typical sulky teenager who has a few issues with his dad and the hinted up irresponsibility in the past. Rachael is a fragile, intelligent slightly strange child. On the day the aliens strike they are spending the weekend with their dad. At first they believe there has been a freak lightning strike, they become unnerved when they see lightning strike twice in the same place. Near his house Ray sees a huge tripod like creature rise up from the earth and start striking down people with huge deadly light beams. In a blind panic Ray returns to his house. He is ...

Early Learning Centre First Shapes Lift Out Puzzle 28/12/2005

figure it out

Early Learning Centre First Shapes Lift Out Puzzle Wow I think that this is the first review in three months, how time flies! Our lounge is looking a bit like a warehouse for toys r us what with the post Christmas day toy piles. One of Scarlett's older toys is her early learning centre first shapes lift out puzzle. Its wood, which is good as she has far too much noisy plastic. From the age of 9-12 months plus shape sorting becomes a big feature in baby's toys. I think it must be a natural inclination to put items into things, the different shapes stimulate problem solving skills. Whilst the physical action helps develop hand-eye co ordination as well as being good for fine motor skills. The puzzle has four big shapes. The first one is wig wam shaped with a red and blue wigwam drawn on it. The second one is a squared green and red flowered birthday present. The third one is a star with a smiley face. The fourth one is a football. All the non round shapes have rounded edges. The shapes have small plastic knob like handles in the middle of them. There are four slots in the puzzle that match the shapes in design and outline. Scarlett loves to take the shapes out and throw them across the room. She can sometimes slide the shapes into their slots, but sometimes spends a long time trying to slide the wrong shape into the wrong slot convinced that if she keeps going it will fit. Its suitable for children of nine months and upwards and costs about £8. The early learning centre can be found in most high streets.

BBC1 - Diagnosis Murder 19/09/2005

Doctor death

BBC1 - Diagnosis Murder I'm a bit of a murder she wrote fan so when the last episode in the series aired some time back in May, I wondered what would fill the cheesey 2.40 murder slot. The answer a cheesey programme about doctors who help to solve murders hence the programme title. So I decided to give Diagnosis Murder a go and now find myself sitting down to watch it most afternoons. I know I could be more constructive with my time whilst Scarlett naps, but there you go! Diagnosis Murder is based round the activities Mark Sloan (dick van dyke of Mary Poppins fame) and his son, homicide detective Steve Sloan (his son in real life to). Either dick van dyke looks very good for his age or van dyke junior isn't ageing well, either way the two look like brothers a lot of the time rather than father and son. MARK SLOAN Hes head of internal medicine at Community General Hospital. I've not worked out his medical speciality, like a lot of doctors on tv he seems to be able to do anything from open heart surgery to delivering babies. He's a consultant for the LAPD . This and his detective son goes a little way to explaining the unlimited access he seems to have to what would surely be confidential police information. He is always stumbling upon a murder either amongst his acquaintances or via the patients treated within the hospitals. Usually his son quickly gets involved, or on some occasions he gets involved in cases his son is investigating. He usually gets a hunch that always turns out to ...

Early Learning Centre Bugsy Bug Activity Bug 12/09/2005

ugly bug

Early Learning Centre Bugsy Bug Activity Bug Busy bug activity bug really is an ugly bug, now that's a sentence that doesn't roll of the tongue try saying it quickly. It's a strange looking toy with the insect theme that a surprising amount of baby toys seem to feature. The big bug/bee/fly whatever has a velvety orange face, it has a big smile and a blue tongue and looks a bit like its licking its lips which in my opinion gives it a bit of an odd look. It has orange and green curly antennas on its head and a blue Velcro strap so you can attach it to cots or pushchairs. It has a black striped body and two thin blue arms with orange spots. Attached to its arms there is huge velvety round looking hand like things. One side is pink and yellow and the other is green and orange. Attached to either side of its body there are plastic triangle shaped rings, with bobbly bits. They are in orange and blue and I presume are there to offer a different texture to chew. On its back there are two velvety wings. One side is yellow and the other side is purple with two black and white spots, one yellow spot, one green spot and two smaller spots in blue and red. The wings make the crinkly sound that babys love. The bugs legs are two bits of chequered elastic string, with two blue and yellow plastic rings attached to each leg. One circle like foot is chequered with a pink velvety underneath bit and the other is velvety purple with a green underneath bit. If this wasn't enough to hurt the eyes there is a little mini bug attached ...

First Years Curly Coil Teether 29/08/2005

curly toy time

First Years Curly Coil Teether Teething seems to be a bit of a cruel joke on behalf of mother nature. Lots of pain and discomfort for babies and parents whilst the wretched things are bursting through the gums and then about five years later they are all gone and replaced again. I think my nan is right, teeth are a nuisance all the way through your life! Scarlett was a little gummy bear for the first nine and a half months of her life, since then shes been getting a tooth every two to three weeks. The first years curly coil teether is designed for babies of three months or over, babies can get teeth at a younger age than that but probably wouldn't be much good at holding the teether to their mouths. The teether is made up of three plastic rings. Continuous soft coils are threaded on to plastic rings, each plastic ring is linked to another one. The rings also have a chunky square bit of plastic on them. One ring has purple coils and a red bit of plastic with a heart on. One has dark green coils with a yellow bit of plastic. One has light green coils with an orange bit of plastic with a star on it. It can serve two purposes, as a teether and as a visually bright toy with different shapes. Scarlett likes to rattle the toy as well as biting it. To be honest Scarlett likes chewing on anything regardless of whether shes teething or not. The coils act as a soft area to bite on whilst the squares are harder, each giving relief to tooth pressure. I found that this did relief teething pressure when the ...

Boots Rainshaker 12/07/2005

rain rain rain

Boots Rainshaker We don't want any rain this week, oh no no no. Summer has come back, I have a garden for the first time in five years, happy days! Scarlett's rain shaker toy luckily involves lots of rattling and not much rain. The rain shaker rattle looks like a big, plasticy egg timer. Its shaped like an egg timer one end is blue and red with a yellow star shaped button on it, that makes a pathetic sounding squeak (in my humble opinion) There is a yellow part in the middle and the end is blue and red, with a small mirror on it (which isn't an overly good one, its a bit blurry) The middle of the toy is full of tiny multicoloured balls that look like hundreds and thousands. The yellow part in the middle has a number of holes that the tiny balls pass through it, acting like an egg timer. According to the packet the rattle came in it aids sound co-ordination and helps babies make a link between sounds and actions. Also it says that it the different shapes and -colours aid hand and eye co-ordination. I wouldn't say this is Scarlett's favourite toy, but she does like it. Compared to her other rattles it makes quite a soft sound. It's very hard and plasticy, so with teeth coming through all the time she loves to chew on it. Also when playing in her cot she loves to wack it against the sides, which is lovely when she decides to play at five in the morning! This toy is part of Boots learning through play range and is suitable for babies of six months up. It costs £5. ...

Playgro Noah's Zebra Loop Rattle 06/07/2005

No zebras were harmed in the making of this toy

Playgro Noah's Zebra Loop Rattle Zebras, I've noticed play a fairly big part in little boys clothing. Before Scarlett was born we didn't know her gender so we brought some gender neutral clothes and some reduced blue sleep suits and vests, which featured zebras in various designs. Little girls are bunnies whilst little boys are zebras. Whilst looking round for Christmas presents for our little one we found this cute little zebra rattle. The zebra has blue and light blue stripes, small children must get a strange idea about animals! It has a smiley face and a playgro logo on the middle of it. It has a velvety, soft texture to it. Attached to the main body of the zebra is a clear plastic ring, with half of the ring showing and the other half in the zebra body. In the ring are six fairly large balls of the following colours, green,purple. Red, blue, orange and yellow. They make a pleasing rattling noise when they toy is shaken. According to playgro's website this rattle enhances visual stimulation because of the contrasting colours, helps auditory stimulation because of the rattling and squeaking (although it doesn't squeak!) and enhances textile stimulations because of the different textures. So what does Scarlett think of it? I wouldn't say its her favourite toy, but she definitely likes it. She likes anything she can make a noise with, she also likes chewing the plastic ring. We brought it from a shop called Bear necessities in Maidenhead,Berks. We paid about £5 for it. I've ...

Mothercare Giraffe Highchair Toy 30/06/2005

A funny looking beast

Mothercare Giraffe Highchair Toy When we brought Scarlett's high chair we brought a high chair toy at the same time. This seemed like a good idea as there are times when shes in her high chair and she needs amusing and we don't want to be constantly picking toys up from the floor. So we brought the giraffe high chair toy. it's a strange looking beast, but then most baby toys are! Its made of crush velvet material It has a yellow face, orange nose and four ears, two of which make a bell like tingling sound. Also on its head are ten different coloured tag like bits of material. Scarlett loves washing instruction tags, so likes this part of the toy. I presume this is a fairly common baby like as its on the toy. There are three different coloured hoops at the end of its neck. Its body is a fat, round ball with crinkly sounding bits. There are two different coloured sections to its body, one section with numbers and one section with letters. It has four legs, two of which are crinkly and one arm that has a tinkling bell sound. Told you it was a strange looking beast! It is a bright visually striking toy that makes a combination of rattling and crinkling sounds that will be stimulating to a baby at a time when they are discovering different sensory experiences. Its advisable for use from 6 months onwards. It's a good toy that Scarlett likes shaking and trying to eat, however its next to useless as a highchair toy. Its supposed to have a suction base that sticks to the highchair table making it hard for ...

A Bit on the Side: 500 Ways to Boost Your Income - Jasmine Birtles 26/06/2005

Do you fancy a bit on the side?

A Bit on the Side: 500 Ways to Boost Your Income - Jasmine Birtles I would bet that most people at some time or maybe all the time feel that they don't have enough money. Chances are that most of you reading this initially starting on ciao to make a few extra pennies. This book introduces ideas to make money that you can do in your spare time if you have a job or don't have the time to put a lot of effort into something. It also presents ideas for people who may want to turn money making schemes into a business. I know when I think of money making schemes I come up with rip offs, taking in ironing or things that need a level of expertise I don't have. The chapters are divided into different areas in which you could make money, the chapter headings are worded as questions and encourage you to consider your talents or resources. CHAPTER 1 SELL YOUR BODY Not as dodgy as it sounds! Even if you don't have time to spare or many talents you have your body! This chapter has some unusual suggestions such as police line ups, selling your hair and being a film extra. Each section has a brief, comprehensive outline saying how to do it? What it costs, how much you can make, whether you need training, what the pros and cons are and useful contacts. Throughout the chapter there are a couple of case studies of people who have been successful with a particular scheme. CHAPTER 2 TIME TO SPARE This is a chapter aimed at people who may be retired or a student or anyone with some time on their hands. Most of the schemes are aimed at ...

Big Brother 6 (2005) 26/06/2005

its back

Big Brother 6 (2005) So this year as usual me and the other half said to each other 'we're not going to watch that rubbish this year, we could use our time more productively'. So that lasted until oh the first show when all the housemates were introduced, pathetic! I know that big brother is pretty nasty tv, but I do find it addictive. Morally I know its wrong a lot of the housemates shouldn't have their egos massaged like this and then be cast into obscurity two weeks after getting out of the house. I think that some of them have borderline personality disorders and shouldn't be in that situation, but still I watch. So what lovely people have the producers found for us to watch this year? Well they seem like an argumentative bunch with about five arguments a day in the first week, where in most years they were still on their best behaviour. I reckon that some of them are putting the arguments on and have settled on an argumentative gimmick to get themselves noticed. So here are the housemates in no particular order. MARY (31 year old witch) Mary is a self proclaimed witch, although she didn't seem to do any witch like rituals in the house and the extent of her witchdom seem to be liking dressing up in pointy hats. She seemed a little bit odd and stary at times as if she wasn't quite all there. Apparently shes been abducted several times. So of all the people on earth shes abducted to be studied and world leaders and scientists the aliens just aren't interested in. Mary seemed to ...

Nature Boy & Girl 06/06/2005

easing our environmental consciences

Nature Boy & Girl Before Scarlett was born we had noble ideas about using cloth nappies, good for the environment and good for our pockets. Like lots of things in life it didn't work out quite as we had imagined. During the fog of Scarlett's newborn days when the practical tasks of looking after her took so long in our inexperienced hands, not too mention the sleepless nights and complete lifestyle change, we used disposable nappies. It would be just until we were feeling a little bit more competent with the mammoth task of looking after our little one. However, disposables are so convenient and nearly eight months later the cloth nappy equipment is still in a draw. We used pampers for a couple of months and then came across nature boy and girl. Excellent we thought a nappy to ease our environmental conscience! Nappies literally stay on in this world forever, they don't biodegrade which isn't good for the environment. Nature boy and girl are made with material that is 70 percent biodegradable. I'm not sure how this is possible so I had a quick look at their website ( and apparently the outer layer is made with GM free maize starch and a decomposable and compostable biodegradable polyester. Also this leads to the nappy being able to 'breathe' making the nappy airier and drier for the baby. This is all the brainchild of a Swedish lawyer, Marlene Sandberg, who became disturbed by the amount of nonbiodegrdable nappies in landfill sights. The nappies feel cottony and have ...

Johnsons Bedtime Bath 29/05/2005

splish splash I was taking a bath

Johnsons Bedtime Bath Scarlett was initially a baby who was very wary of having a bath, especially when very little. However, she know loves it and will splash around like mad and soak us if given the chance! We use Johnsons baby bedtime bath in her baths. It is packaged in a purpley pink bottle with the johnsons logo on the front and a little picture of a baby lying on a pillow in night night land. Its called bedtime bath, because according to the johnsons website its ingredients are supposed to relax babies and toddlers before bed. Apparently it contains lavender and chamomile and releases lovely aromas in a warm bath to relax baby. To be honest I wouldn't say that it relaxes Scarlett as she sees water and wants to splash, but it may well work for some babies. It has a lovely, gentle smell to it which reminds me a bit of baby talc.When added to the bath it gives of an inoffensive aroma, which is good as you really don't want baby bubble bath that pongs.After Scarlett has been bathed her skins has a lovely, soft , sweet smell to it that has a tinge of lavender to it. A 300ml bottle lasts quite a while as a smidgen of bubble bath is quite effective. This bath lotion can be used for grown ups to, because its formulated to be appropriate for delicate baby skin it seems the ideal thing for adults with sensitive skin. According to the blurb on the bottle, it has clinical proven mildness that is mild enough for newborn babies. According to the website the no more ...

Calpol 20/05/2005

Painless relief for all the family

Calpol Scarlett is in the middle of a long drawn out teething process. It really does seem to be taking ages. We keep trying to peek in her mouth to see the tooth's process (when she lets us!) but it appears to be taking its time. This is all making her a little bit grumpy from time to time. The other night she transcended grumpiness and we had a full scale screaming, distressed, crying episode. Nothing was calming her down so we decided that she needed some calpol to ease the discomfort. We were quite reluctant to give her calpol as we reasoned that as this is her first tooth she will be teething on and off for a while, so can't have calpol all the time. However, she was very upset the other night. It is sold in a bright purple packet with a picture of a smiley child on it (what you are hoping for after using it!) There are 72 sachets in a packet, they cost about £2.50 and can be brought from any chemist or big supermarket. Calpol is a sugar free strawberry flavoured infant suspension (even after reading the information I'm still not sure what suspension means it sounds a bit odd), but its aim is to bring down fever and deal with teething pain. It contains 120mg if of paracetamol per 5ml of calpol. It also contains the following: maltihol liquid, glycerol polysorbate 80, sorbitol solution, methyl parahydroxybenzoate (E218) propyl parahyfroxybenzoate (E216) ethyl parahydroxybenzoate (E214) dispersible cellulose, xanthan gum, flavoured water and carmoisine (E122) as ...

Pampers Baby Wipes 13/05/2005

clean that bum

Pampers Baby Wipes Whilst at home we usually use cotton wool and water to wash our little one's backside. Cotton wool works out cheaper and is supposed to be better for preventing nappy rash. I think that cotton wool is best for the cleaning of the baby bottom, its kinder to their skin and is better at removing pooh. However, I obviously can't use cotton wool and water whilst out and about so I have pampers baby wipes in the changing bag for sudden explosive emergencies and changing after swimming. They are also extremely useful for when we run out of cotton wool. They are in a green packet with the prerequisite picture of a baby on the front. There are 72 in a packet and they cost about £2.49. You can buy them from boots, mother care and any large supermarket. The wipes are rectangular and about the size of a small tissue and have a slightly quilted texture to them, which should make it softer on your babys skin.. They are slightly wet to the touch and its important to make sure the packet is done up properly as the top wipe will dry out. They have quite a strong slightly perfumery smell to them and smell to me a bit like baby talc. I'm not overly keen on the smell I find it a bit cloying. Apparently the wipes have water and essential oils in, according to the front of the packages. However, its really tough to ascertain exactly what these essential oils are by reading the package. There seemed to be every language in the world on the back of the package and the English bits on the ...

LeapFrog Learn & Groove Activity Station 05/05/2005

DJ stinkybum

LeapFrog Learn & Groove Activity Station This is our nickname for Scarlett when shes in the learn and groove centre, poor kid she has a lot to put up with! Scarlett is an expert roller over and is on the brink of being able to crawl, so when we are not in the room or able to closely supervising her she needs a kind of 'holding' area. She's now a bit big for her bouncy chair and is able to sit up in it, so we needed to find another way of keeping her in a safe area, so that I could go to the toilet and not come down to find that she had eaten the computer wires. We looked into door bouncers, but there is a step down into our kitchen, not a good idea! We decided upon the perkily named learn and groove station. It's designed for babies from 4 months to walking age (its definitely not for babys who can not support their head) The best way to describe is as a round shaped station with five interactive elements the baby can play with. There are two levels to the station, the area with the interactive toys is slotted by four adjustable legs (that can be moved to three different positions as baby grows), to a base. The baby is placed in the seat in the middle via two leg holes and is able to lean its legs on their lower base, or in Scarlett's case rest on her nappy and suspend her legs in mid air. It can be a bit tricky to get a wriggly baby to put both legs through the right hole, so we always check to make sure her legs haven't done something strange like two of them finding their way through one leg hole. The seat ...
See more reviews Back to top