Back To School With Sports Direct

We were sent these items from Sports Direct for the purpose of reviews. All thoughts and opinions are our own.

Jack is now back at school, he’s now in year one and life is busier than ever. He’s learning more at school so more reading and homework, he’s doing football training after school on a Thursday, golf lessons one day a week and going up the range with his Daddy and he’s also got his Friday night club. He is loving being so busy and is loving being back at school with all of his friends – he has even got a school trip this Thursday that he is very excited about!

We were recently contacted by Sports Direct asking if we would like some items from their kids range to help Jack settle in back to school. We use Sports Direct a lot for all our sporty needs – having a golf mad partner and son means we spend a lot of time shopping in there and only recently bought all of Jack’s football training items in there!

We were given a list of items to choose from: a pair of school shoes, a pair of trainers or football boots, a jacket, a bag, a bottle, a shirt and some shorts. Now I couldn’t find a pair of shorts in his size but I did ask for something from each of the other sections so what did we choose?

Sports Direct Sports Direct Sports Direct

For school shoes, there was only one brand we could choose – Kickers. Both Steve and I remember having Kickers when we were little and wanted Jack to try them too as we remembered just how good quality they are. We picked these Kickers Fragma Slip On Shoes which usually retail at £44.99 but are currently on sale for just £30! Jack has been to school in them for the last few days and they are withstanding an energetic five year old well – I’d normally be seeing at least one or two scuffs on his shoes by now! They fit well and look very smart.

Sports Direct Sports Direct Now as I mentioned before, we recently grabbed Jack’s football stuff from Sports Direct so he wasn’t in total need of trainers or football boots but when he saw Sidewalk Sport wheely trainers (usually £47.99, down to £29), he begged me for them and Sports Direct were more than happy for him to try them. He obviously won’t be using these at school but will definitely make the walk to school a little faster and he can change into his school shoes there, haha!

Sports Direct Sports DirectNow Jack isn’t allowed to take any bags other than his book bag in on a regular day at school due to lack of storage space – they have pegs for their coats, shelves for their bottles and lunchboxes if they have packed lunch and boxes for their book bags. However since Jack also attends football after school on a Thursday, he needed something to store that in that he could take in and bring home every Thursday. This Minion character 3D backpack (usually £19.99, currently on sale for £7) is spacious enough to fit in all his football kit with room for anything else he needs to put in there.

Sports Direct Sports DirectWith it getting close to Winter, Jack needed a decent coat that could withstand the elements – after all, we all know British weather is incredibly temperamental. This Karrimor Urban Jacket (£42.99 usually, half price at just £21.99) is perfect. It fits him well but also has space for him to grow a little. It is waterproof and windproof, has reflective detailing and has WeatherTite technology. Just what you need from a school jacket.

Sports DirectFinally we were sent this Character flip bottle, costing just £3.49 down from £5.99 and this Slazenger polo shirt (£3 – not pictured as it is in Jack’s PE kit at school). I must admit that we did have an accident with the bottle – it is a plastic bottle but Jack dropped the one we were sent on his third day at school and it shattered across the floor and he was very upset – luckily my mum managed to find him exactly the same one in our local store and he has been extra careful with it since.

The green tee has been perfect for PE as he is in the green team. It is good quality and I can see it lasting a long time.

We have been very impressed with the items we were sent to ensure Jack was sorted for back to school. They certainly do have a great range of children’s items – and if you hurry up, you may even get some of them on sale right now!

L.O.L Surprise Doll Unboxing

The L.O.L Surprise Doll was sent for the purpose of this unboxing,

We’ve talked about L.O.L Surprise dolls on the blog before (read one of our posts here) so when we were asked if Jack would like to do a video unboxing of one of the range, we just had to say yes. Jack can be a little shy, my video editing efforts aren’t the greatest and Olivia makes an appearance but I think we did okay, don’t you?


Jack is very chuffed with the surprise doll he got – have you managed to get any of the rare or ultra rare ones?


Lunch With My Little One With Hartley’s Jelly

This post is in collaboration with Hartley’s Jelly

Jack is super excited to be back to school. One of the things he has mostly missed is lunchtime and whilst he normally indulges in a hot school meal, he has recently been asking to take a lunchbox in every now and again. He loves nothing more than sitting and chatting to his friends at the lunch table. Hartley’s, the brand behind the jelly pots that Jack loves so much, have even released a series of videos focusing on the weird and wonderful things kids talk about over their lunchbox. Dr Sam Wass is a child expert who created these videos – it has been very interesting to see just what topics children talk about together over lunch. Watch them here!

Hartley’s kindly sent us a lunchbox, some stickers and some of their fantastic No Added Sugar jelly pots so that I could have lunch with Jack now that he is back at school and talk about some of the different things going on in our lives – from the food he likes, to friendship, family and education. He even decorated his lunchbox, back and front, with the stickers provided.Hartleys No Added Sugar jelly pots are all the fun of a normal pot, just with no added sugar. These are a handy small pot and perfect lunchbox size so made for the perfect treat for our lunchtime chat. We discussed how he was feeling being back at school (super happy apparently because he was made Artist of the Week!), who his good friends were this week (he told me in great detail that he had been playing King Arthur and Merlin with a couple of his friends) and also family and food. No surprises when it came to the food discussion – he obviously mentioned jelly! He’s a big fan and so am I especially now they have introduced the No Added Sugar jelly pots to the range!
It was really nice getting to chat to him one on one – we don’t get much one on one time at the moment with him being at school and his sister being so small so it was well needed. As you can see, he enjoyed wolfing down his jelly pots – and I’ll be surprised if he leaves us any to try! Hartley’s know how super stressful the back to school rush can be which is why they have your back – they are giving away lunchboxes when you collect 12 Hartley’s lids. If you’re buying Hartley’s anyway, then why not collect your lids and claim your free lunchbox and sticker pack? If you don’t, why not give their No Added Sugar pots a try? Your child thinks they’re getting a really tasty treat and you can be safe in the knowledge that it is good for them too! What kid wouldn’t love a free lunchbox too?

These pots come in a range of great flavours – strawberry, raspberry, blackcurrant, orange, apple and tropical – so your child really will be spoilt for choice. Will you be collecting lids so you can pick up your free lunchbox? Check out promotional pots for more details and once you’ve collected all 12, visit the site to claim!

We’ve been loving these no added sugar pots – have you tried them yet?

Making Reading Fun With Storytime Magazine

We were sent a couple of copies of Storytime magazine for the purpose of review. All thoughts and opinions are our own.

Jack loves magazines and he loves stories (see all of our book reviews here) so when we were offered the chance to review Storytime magazine, we jumped at the chance. The UK’s only story magazine, with thousands of readers in over 50 countries, you can try it yourself today on a trial offer or on a subscription for as little as £2 an issue. You can choose your subscription here.

Before setting up Storytime, the team behind the magazine worked in large publishing companies and created a number of well known branded magazines which kids enjoy. However, they enjoyed it mainly for the plastic toy rather than the content which was a little lacking to say the least. They left their jobs, took a huge risk and used their own money to launch Storytime as a social enterprise..

Storytime gives children brilliant stories in a fun, colourful magazine format. Something that works for reluctant readers who won’t pick up a book thatstill appeals to children who devour stories and do read books for enjoyment – the money made from Storytime magazine allows them to work with schools, charities and councils to give some less-advantaged children some good quality reading materials at a low, low price.

Each issue contains fairy tales, poems, myths and legends, folk tales, plus puzzles and activities, with beautiful, fun and colourful illustrations to bring it all to life. There is also no adverts and the magazine is printed on good quality paper. So what did we think?

Jack absolutely loved Storytime magazine. Not only is it jam packed full of stories that Jack can enjoy but there is also plenty of puzzles for him to do and many competitions – which Jack loved. He loves entering competitions so this mixes all of his favourite things. He has read all the three copies we received cover to cover and has spent ages poring over the puzzles and asking me to help him enter the competitions.

I’m very impressed. There is a variety of stories available so your children is bound to find one they really love. The illustrations are great and as mentioned before, there is no adverts and the paper is great quality! We will definitely be looking into getting a subscription as a present for his birthday or Christmas as it is definitely something you’d enjoy.

Is this something your child would enjoy?

Keeping Children Happy When Travelling

In collaboration

Travelling can be stressful at the best of the times but if you are taking your whole family along for the ride too, it can get even more stressful. It is so important to keep your children happy when travelling otherwise it can ruin the whole journey!

We haven’t yet travelled abroad with Olivia – the furthest we’ve got is Great Yarmouth! – but we have with Jack – to Italy in 2012. But you can travel both abroad and within the country, can’t you? Holiday Gems have asked me to share my top travel tips when travelling with children.

Pack A Bag Full Of Interesting Things

Books, card games, iPad. Whatever you know will keep your children happy, pack it. Jack was just a baby when we went to Rome so slept most of the travel time but on our long car journeys, it is very easy for him to get bored. We always ensure we have the iPad with us so he can watch movies or play games and we also pack some books, toys and card games so he can keep himself amused in the back with his sister and whoever else happens to be travelling with us (usually my mum).

Bring Some Snacks

Children are always hungry (well, they say they are) so it is important to make sure you have some snacks packed for your journey. Fruit, crisps, cooked meat – these are all perfect to put in your handbag and pull out when the inevitable ‘I’m hungry’ whine permeates your eardrums.

Think Ahead

If travelling abroad, make sure you think ahead – book seats together, check flight check in times and things you can do whilst waiting for your flight. The last thing you want is a bored child complaining before you have even got on the plane.

Consider Them

The final tip I have is to consider them – consider them in ALL aspects of your holiday. Make sure the place where you are going is somewhere they will be happy, consider their thoughts and feelings during the actual travelling process and make sure they are kept occupied and not bored.

These are my top travelling tips – what are yours? Have you checked out the top tips for flying with children on the Holiday Gems website?

Now we all love travelling and now you’ve got a chance to win a Trunki travel pillow. Just fill in the Rafflecopter below. This giveaway is UK only and ends at 23.59pm on the 28th of September 2017. Good luck.

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