Sunday, 17 August 2014

Silent Sunday - underneath Dippy's bottom

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Z Line Ninja Deluxe Zipline Playsets and Action Figures Review

Being a kid in the 80's means that I watched the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and I'm pleased to see these little guys are still going strong and something my five year old Blake is starting to really get into! He is fascinated by martial arts and has completed his first grading in Taekwondo already!

Blake Clement Taekwondo in Bromley

It was exciting to have received one of the newly available Turtle playsets by Flair along with two figures to play with and review.

Blake Clement with the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Z Line Ninja Deluxe Zipline Playset - Billboard Breakout

The new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Z Line Ninja Deluxe Zipline Playsets are a brilliant idea - theyve got special strips to suspend parts to the walls so you can create a zip wire escape route for your Turtles to slide along.

Blake Clement with the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Z Line Ninja Deluxe Zipline Playset - Billboard Breakout

We received the Billboard Breakout set which has brilliant details such as a drop down platform so you can plunge the bad guys to their doom!
The kit arrives in parts but is far quicker and easier than I expected to put together and Blake loved helping to stick the sticker decals on and play with the layout for the playset.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Z Line Ninja Deluxe Zipline Playset - Billboard Breakout

The special strips are removable and replaceable so you can move your playset and zip wires around as much as you want to.
The Billboard Breakout playset includes the main billboard facade which has 3 outgoing zip wires and a space for an incoming zip line, there's an attack trigger which releases a platform in front of the billboard.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Z Line Ninja Deluxe Zipline Playset - Billboard Breakout

The gargoyle launcher is detailed enough to look scary! There's a c-turn, pulleys and a harness too so you can really get a good set up going!
We moved house in July to our "forever home" and Blake is undecided on if this should be in the Playroom or his Bedroom, actually - Blake wants to see if we can set this up in his toy cupboard so that he can play with it away from his younger sister!!!

You can buy additional zip line playsets which are all interconnectable so you can make your zip line city as large as you like! I've already had a request for the Water Tower one!
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Z Line Ninja Deluxe Zipline Playset - Billboard Breakout

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Splinter Action Figure
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Michelangelo Action Figure

We used our playset with Splinter and Michelangelo who are available separately. Splinter action figure comes with a removable tail, and his cane so he's ready to mentor the turtles and Michelangelo action figure has absolutely loads of joints so he's fully articulated and poseable ... and really brilliant - his shell opens so you have space to hide his things! 
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Michelangelo Action Figure
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Splinter Action Figure

The new range of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Z Line Ninja Deluxe Zipline Playsets and figures became available from Flair last month.

Emma in Bromley xx
(twitter @beachpebble)

* I received the billboard breakout zip line playset and two characters for the sole purpose of being able to review them.

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Miffy Draws Book Review

We love Miffy in our house and I'm delighted to be able to share with you one of the latest Miffy books available from the 14th August at Waterstones and all good bookshops.
Miffy Draws

The new Miffy books include Miffy’s First Day, Miffy Draws and Miffy Outdoors and I was lucky enough to be sent Miffy Draws for review.

Maegan Clement reading Miffy Draws

Blake Clement reading Miffy Draws

Miffy Draws is a lovely wipe clean activity book full of Dick Bruna's wonderful artwork to finish off! There are prompts, games and challenges on each page, such as drawing a snowman, fashioning an outfit for Miffy to wear and drawing your own home next to Miffy's house. 

Maegan Clement reading Miffy Draws
The pages have plenty of creative space and sections with dotted line patterns and shapes to complete - these are all well designed with fine motor skills and learning to write in mind.

Blake Clement reading Miffy Draws

The book comes with a special Miffy (whiteboard) marker pen to use and the pages wipe clean with a cloth, we also used wet wipes and kitchen roll to clean each page.

Maegan Clement reading Miffy Draws

Both my 3 year old daughter and 5 year old son have played with this book - both  have their own individual way of interacting with this book - Maegan likes to do the patterns and swirls over the images and Blake likes to add lots of details to the pictures.

As with any Miffy book I've come across, the colours are all bold primary colours and the content is unisex so all children can enjoy the books equally.

Maegan Clement reading Miffy Draws

The three latest Miffy titles are in addition to a large number of Dick Bruna's Miffy books already either republished or published for the first time this year:  Miffy at the Zoo, Miffy’s Play Date, Miffy’s Day, Miffy Dress Up, Miffy’s Birthday, Miffy’s Garden, Miffy and the New Baby and Miffy on Holiday!

Simon and Schuster ISBN 9781471120800 rrp £4.99

And to celebrate the Miffy books -   Waterstones is running a competition to win a weekend in Amsterdam for a family of four, which includes a day trip to Miffy’s home town of Utrecht to see the Dick Bruna exhibition.  The competition runs throughout August and is open to Waterstones loyalty card members only (customers can sign up for a loyalty card in any Waterstones branch or online at The winning prize for a family of 4 includes flights from a UK airport, 2 nights in a hotel in Amsterdam, plus rail tickets to Utrecht and free entry to the Dick Bruna exhibition.

Emma in Bromley xx

* I received a copy of Miffy Draws for the sole purpose of being able to review it.

Saturday, 9 August 2014

HEMA Store in Bromley UK

I always get excited when we get something new in Bromley and I have to say, the latest store to open - HEMA, has not disappointed! It's such an exciting shop - an explosion of colour and I love it!
It's like a mini affordable department store!
I was sent a small selection of items to see and since then I have also shopped in the store 3 times and bought absolutely loads, including birthday presents! Shhhh - don't tell my hubby!

HEMA Bromley UK

There's a food area - look out for the big bags of ready salted crisps for 50p - they're delish! 
There's homeware, from pots and pans to tea towels and placemats, which gently glides into cake making with every colour of ready to roll fondant and bright sprinkles and sweet little storage jars like this one which I bought this week.
HEMA storage jar

The children's zone includes lots of wooden toys, including wooden cars for £1 each and an adorable £6 wooden cake stand, there's also some basic clothing and outdoor toys - we picked up a small paddling pool!
The stationery section has very cool notebooks, pens and stamp sets, not to forget an impressive collection of washi tape and gift wrapping, a small tools and hardware area and party supplies!
There's also an impressive beauty area full of colourful nail polish and affordable SkinCare - I bought myself some make-up removing wipes for £1.75 and a night cream for £3 - both were paraben free too! What a result! 
There's currently a voucher on the back of the brochure (available on a stand at the entrance) for a free packet of biscuits when you spend more than £5 too!

HEMA cake sprinkles, stickers, note book, waffle biscuits, nail polish

I was sent the following small selection of items available in Hema:
Orange nail polish
Waffle biscuits
A pack of 2 sticker sheets
Cake decorations - sprinkles
A mint note book - with the most lovely wording on the cover!

HEMA note book

HEMA is located on the lower ground floor opposite the Disney store in Intu Bromley (formerly known as the Glades)

Emma in Bromley xx

Friday, 8 August 2014

Sylvanian Hamster Family and Summer Competition

Sylvanian Families are one of those toys that I loved in the 80's and I'm excited to see my own children enjoying them too!
Sylvanian Families Hamilton Hamster Family

To celebrate the current competition (on until 31st august) with Sylvanian Families UK, we received a Hamster family to review and use.
Just as soft as they were when I was little, these characters are full of fun! 
Sylvanian Families Hamilton Hamster Family

The sweet little outfits, that my daughter enjoys removing, are well made with lots of attention to detail - right down to buttons and lace trims, a mixture of textures and easy to fasten Velcro tabs.

The Hamilton hamster family are a new addition to the collection and easily recognisable as hamsters, the family set comes with a Daddy (Huckleberry), Mummy (Hilda), boy (George) and girl (Jane)- with babies available separately.
I had a real life pet hamster when I was little so I really like this little family - Sylvanian families are great for role play, learning about animals, creating your own stories and their flocked "fur" makes them feel very special. Sylvanian Families have brilliant attention to detail and the accessories and extras you can collect, really can create an entire world!

Maegan with Freya Rabbit - Sylvanian Families

My daughter, age 3 enjoys playing with sylvanian families enormously!
They are privileged to have a shelf on her special bed! 
Maegan playing with Sylvanian families on her dollhouse bed

Maegan had the pleasure of meeting real life Freya the chocolate rabbit at the toyfair in London earlier this year and now has quite a collection, she has the chocolate rabbit family (including Freya!) a celebration rabbit family from 2012 and the ice cream playset as well as the Hamster family. 
We have to be careful that Sylvanian characters are kept well away from Maegan's big brother, Blake because they become Tyrannosaurs Rex food! (Poor Hilda Hamilton!) 
Hilda Hamilton, Sylvanian Families Hamster Mum
I have a feeling sylvanian families is going to feature largely in this years' Christmas celebrations! 
Maegan and Freya Rabbit - Sylvanian Families

Back to the competition from Epoch that I'd like to share with you - this isn't hosted by myself, just one worth sharing :-)

Sylvanian Chocolate Rabbit Family

How the competition works:
Launched on 1 July, the #SylvanianSummer photo competition is running across the official social media platforms for the brand (Twitter: @SylvanianUK, Facebook:  SylvanianFamiliesUK and Instagram: @SylvanianFamiliesUK).
Parents and children can bond over their favourite toys and work together to create engaging visual scenes with their Sylvanian Families characters.

On Twitter and Instagram each image needs to be tagged with the hashtag #SylvanianSummer, while on Facebook, the photo must be entered as a comment on a status which specifically mentions the competition.

Closing date for entries is midnight on 31stAugust 2014. (More information on how to enter and terms and conditions relating to the competition can be found

There is a hefty selection of prizes for the best entries including a Forest Holiday worth £1,000 for the winner, and a range of prizes for runners-up including: a Sylvanian Families Grand Hotel complete with a Chocolate Rabbit Family and several furniture sets, plus 1 Sylvanian Families Cedar Terrace House, and a further 10 Chocolate Rabbit Families.

Sylvanian Families is celebrating its 30thanniversary in 2015, and this competition is the first in a series of campaigns it has lined up to rekindle the brand’s iconic status before the 30th.

The competition winner and runners-up will be announced in September.

Emma in Bromley xx

Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Boden AW14 Press Preview

One of the things I get most excited about as a blogger is the Boden Press Day - I've been to a few of these now and they are always brilliant fun and I get to indulge in one of my personal favourite brands - not just for my own wardrobe but also for both my children! 
Boden AW14 Press Preview #bodenpressday Maegan Clement
Boden AW14 Press Preview #bodenpressday
Boden AW14 Press Preview #bodenpressday

So back in May was the Autumn Winter 2014 Boden collection press day, it happened to fall on a day that for me was a sad one - my Nanna passed away earlier this year - not only was she the grandparent I was most closest to, but also my last one, being grandparentless has been hard to adjust to. The press day fell on what would have been Nanna Betty's birthday - the first one since she passed away. 
Boden AW14 Press Preview #bodenpressday
Boden AW14 Press Preview #bodenpressday Maegan Darcie Clement
Boden AW14 Press Preview #bodenpressday

I headed into Central London for the event and I took with me, my beautiful daughter Maegan - she absolutely adores coming along to these things with me, she's a shoe girl and a poser so more than happy to be a part of it! 
Boden AW14 Press Preview #bodenpressday
Boden AW14 Press Preview #bodenpressday
Boden AW14 Press Preview #bodenpressday

Boden had done (as expected) a brilliant press day - the room was set up with amazing details and the theme was clear - two distinct themes to be precise 
Country and City these for me were an instant hit! I'm a country bumpkin northern girl who did rural science at school and misses the Lake District and northern beaches more than I could ever put into words - although as a stroppy teenager listening to nirvana and stomping up Helvellyn in cherry red DM's ( when DM stood for Doc Marten's, not Direct Message) - I did not appreciate the countryside and wanted nothing more than to live in Canary Wharf - I'd decided this at the age of 9 and moved to London 14 years ago - now I fight my inbuilt urge to run for the hills! I'm an equal blend of both countryside and city so this collection spoke volumes to me!
Boden AW14 Press Preview #bodenpressday

Now, Maegan is normally an absolute delight to take along and on our journey, excitedly chatted away about what we were going to do and see - I timed our trip to the press day to fall before she got too tired and ready for nap so afterwards she could drift off for a little snooze...of course anyone with a 2 year old will tell you things never go according to plan!
Boden AW14 Press Preview #bodenpressday Boden Bench Maegan Darcie Clement

After only 10mins at the event, Maegan chose to have the biggest tantrum she has ever had - the mother of all tantrums, the one I will never forget - I'm talking violence here - she pulled out a handful of my hair, kicked me, hit me and bit me so hard on the cheek, I had a bite mark for 3 days that resembled a strange love bite! I was feeling emotional enough that day anyway and this just tipped me right over the edge - I found myself stuck in a corner, crying my eyes out with a two year old going mental and refusing to let go of a dress! Mortified doesn't even come close!
Boden AW14 Press Preview #bodenpressday

After a tearful emergency call to the hubby (My Knight in Shiny Armour) who fortunately for me was at close by Selfridges at that very moment, careful detachment of the said dress and a mad, tearful, hiding behind the toddler sprint to the exit - I left.
Boden AW14 Press Preview #bodenpressday

I'm way to old to do this but ... I cried all the way to Selfridges, for many many reasons - the tantrum, the humiliation, the painful bite mark, for not being able to see most of the Boden collection, for not even getting to chat to anyone at the event, for missing out on all the yummy refreshments, for feeling like I'm never allowed to be "just me" and for my Nanna Betty's missed birthday.

Boden AW14 Press Preview #bodenpressday

As you can see from the few pieces I did manage to spy, the collection is wonderful and it is currently becoming available so please do take a moment to browse the lovely Boden A/W 14 collection - a big digital round of applause for all the brilliant Boden people, I do hope it hasn't put you off inviting me to the next one (although I may come alone!)
Boden AW14 Press Preview #bodenpressdayMaegan's sad face

Emma in Bromley xx

Monday, 28 July 2014

Pizza Express Bromley Review

I had a meal last week in the Bromley branch of Pizza Express, I was there to review it and take a look at some of the new additions to the menu - there's an impressive summer menu which reflects the season perfectly!
Pizza Express Bromley

I went for a lunch time meal and took my husband along for company and menu sharing :)
We've been to Pizza Express before - it tends to be one of the places we go to when there's a big group of us for birthdays - it also used to be one of my regular Friday working lunch haunts, before I became a play at home mum. I have my usual favourite - to be honest, I enjoy my usuals so much that I often bearly glance at the menu because I know what I'm having before I even set foot through the door, but for the sake of my review, for this meal, a dough balls starter and pizza margarita were banned - I was determind to explore the menu and try new things!

The second we walked through the door, we were welcomed by a friendly smile and shown to our table, something new for me - I always eat in the window, this time I was further into the restaurant and seated in a lovely little round booth - my new favourite table - it felt very intimate and special while at the same time, allowing me to people watch! The staff were all friendly and professional, with our waitress having sound knowledge of both the Bromley Pizza Express and a neighbouring branch.
Pizza Express Bromley

In addition to the main dining rooms, the Bromley branch has a lovely outdoor dining terrace as well as a elegant spiral staircase leading up to a further dining room. 
Pizza Express Bromley Outside dining

For starters we chose:
* Olives Nocellara del Belice - these are beautifully vibrant green olives with a buttery taste, I'd recommend these over other olives.
Pizza Express Olives Nocellara del Belice

* Leggera Panzanella - classic Tuscan inspired, santos and vine tomatoes, cucumber, red onion, surfine capers and croutons marinated with extra virgin olive oil, garlic, basil and balsamic vinegar.
Pizza Express Leggera Panzanella

* Risotto Fresco - oak roasted peppered salmon fillet, garlic and parsley in a creamy white wine risotto finished with rocket and lemon.
Pizza Express Risotto Fresco

Something special to drink
* Hugo Pizza Express - Prosecco with Elderflower, fresh mint and lemon over ice - a magnificent summer drink.
Hugo Pizza Express

For the main course, we both chose from Romana Pizza selection- boasting bigger thinner crispier bases.
* Toscana - crumbled chilli and fennel sausage, tomato and mozzarella, gran Moravia cheese, fresh basil and extra Virgin Olive oil.
Pizza Express Toscana

* Pomodoro Pesto - marinated santos tomatoes, fresh basil, baby mozzarella, tomato and garlic oil.
Pizza Express Pomodoro Pesto

And for dessert? Well ... It'd be rude not to! 
* Chocolate glory - a must have for any chocoholic!
Pizza Express Chocolate Glory

* Raspberry sorbet with chocolate stick (dairy free) - I was very excited by this because most sorbets contain raw egg, which I avoid, so finding dairy free sorbet was fantastic - and this is my new favourite dessert - it's perfect!
Pizza Express Raspberry sorbet with chocolate stick (dairy free)

Pizza Express boasts a great menu, and takes great consideration for those with dietary requirements - a generous veggie menu without a single stuffed mushroom in sight and there is a plethora of gluten free choices all coeliac uk accredited, not to mention a thoughtful children's menu.

Pizza Express Bromley

We enjoyed our meal, all food was well presented and simply delicious and the atmosphere, decor and staff are a credit to a wonderful branch of a Pizza Express.

Emma in Bromley xx

* I received a meal from Pizza Express for the sole purpose of being able to carry out the review. All words, thoughts and photographs are my own.