Tuesday, 22 April 2014

Happy Days at Work - The Secretary

Jigsaw Ravensburger Happy Days At Work Jigsaw Puzzle

Recently my son managed to break his arm playing football at school. This has meant that there are limitations on the things he can do. One of the things he has found is that it is very difficult to use his games consoles, two arms are needed to use a controller. As a result he has been looking for other things to do with his time. Recently I was sent The Secretary, a 500 piece jigsaw puzzle. It is the eighth in the Ravensburger Happy Days at Work jigsaw puzzle series which take a nostalgic look at jobs and professions in older days. This one features a secretary at work in her 1960′s office.

I love the old-fashioned office with the electric typewriter on the desk, the old fashioned telephone with the dial and the tea tray with a few biscuits. The filing cabinets behind complete the picture, now everything is kept on computer. It takes me back to my school days and visiting the dentist office which looked very much like this. The other puzzles in the series are the Milkman, District Nurse, Farmer, Train Driver, Air Hostess, Baker and Mechanic. I think my mum would love to do these puzzles.

I love doing jigsaws, they are a great way to relax. There is something soothing about searching though the pieces and trying to put them together. My son pounced on this jigsaw and said he was going to do it and I was not allowed to help him. I got out the jigsaw board, which is in fact a large piece of wood that was in the garage when I moved it. It is useful as it allows the jigsaw to be moved around if I need to use the table for something else.
When I do jigsaws I do all the edge pieces first. I tried to explain the technique to my son, but he has his own method. It involves dumping all the pieces out on the board and putting together the bits he fancies doing.

jigsaw2 Ravensburger Happy Days At Work Jigsaw Puzzle

It actually seems to work quite well, although you don’t have as much room on the board to see what you are doing. My son has really taken to doing the jigsaw, he rushes in from school and sits down at the table to do a bit more. It is really nice to see him concentrating on it for great lengths of time and it is a great distraction from his arm. I am going to have to get out my other puzzles for him to try when he finishes this one.

Available on Amazon

Monday, 14 April 2014

Ravensburger: The Amazing Spider-Man 2 Puzzles!!!

Available from all good retailers (5 years +) 4 Stars
Parent View:
Ravensburger always produce good quality puzzles – although Con (a keen puzzle builder) did find these new Spider-Man sets a bit “Tricky” and challenging at times. I would say 7 years up is the best age. A nice gift for birthdays and Xmas!!!
Review by kidzcoolit

Monday, 7 April 2014

Garden Fun With Ravensburger's Outdoor Mandala Designer Sets.

This lovely set lets you design beautiful outdoor mandalas! What could be 
more fun than colouring outdoors on a sunny day?! With the super sized
Mandala Designer, you'll be an amazing street artist, sketching beautiful 
designs on any paved surface! 

Each design in the mandala template disk allows you to create lots of 
different pictures - you can turn the great outdoors into a colourful gallery 
full of fabulous artwork! You simply place the stencil onto the ground, 
choose your chalk colour and start designing! This particular set comes 
with a detailed template with fairiesto draw unique creations! It contains 
1 large mandala stencil, 6 colored chalks and a clear set of easy to follow

We've been having lots of fun outside in our garden this week playing with 
our Outdoor Mandala Designer Fairy Dreams SetYou literally open the 
box, take out the stencil and the chalks and get going! It's such a simple 
idea but a lovely fun one, my three have loved it. 

The chalks come in 6 bright colours and show up really well even on the dullest 
of pavements like ours, it's a lovely way to brighten up any garden. We've been 
having lots of fun colouring outside, using the provided stencil and doing free 
hand pictures too. Theses sets are aimed at children aged 5+ and come in
three different designs so there's three templates to collect. My little man is only 
3 but loves playing with it. I have to give him a little help by holding the stencil 
down for him but then he colours the rest himself. It's been nice to see them 
playing together doing something that they all love to do. What child doesn't like 
to colour?

We don't have much of a garden path but it was enough to make our mark on. 
You only need a small space but I guess you could do as much or as little as
you like, it's up to you.

Here at the Mummy Of 3 Diaries household Lily, Ryan and I gave the 
Outdoor Mandala Designer Fairy Dreams Set a very well deserved 4/5 for it's
fun play value and cute designs.

Available on Amazon priced £13.49

Monday, 31 March 2014

Junior Labyrinth board game Ravensburger

The Junior Labyrinth board game by Ravensburger is the beginners version of the Labyrinth Games series. The board has 12 treasures to be found within the maze and you can move the walls to open up passages.

The player chooses a token to discover which treasure is up for grabs and then has to study a path to reach it. Sometimes it is simple but other times it requires logical thinking and thinking ahead,
If I push this tile will it open up the passage for me?
Each turn the player takes the extra Labyrinth tile and pushes it along one of the columns or rows marked with an arrow, this pushes all the other tiles along one and other players too if you happen to be standing on that line.
By shifting the walls the player hopes to make a free run directly to the treasure but you will discover this isn’t always possible and you have to settle with as close as you can get passing on the chance to win the token to the next player.
Once all the treasure has been collected the game is over and the player with the most tokens is the winner.
I like this game, it helps with problem solving and thinking ahead. The girls struggle at first to see what happens by moving the tiles but they quickly pick up the gist and are able to make better decisions as the game continues.
They are competitive and there are usually tears when one realises the other is going to win but that’s another important lesson in life too isn’t it?
I think as they get better at the game I won’t be winning so frequently ;)
Review by Marisworld.co.uk
Available on Amazon for £14.99

Monday, 24 March 2014

A great gift alternative for Mother’s Day

Ravensburger make some of the loveliest puzzles around and this new one, Me to You – Home Baking, is just charming and will make a great gift for mums this Mother’s Day and any puzzle enthusiast looking for a challenge.

This adorable 1000 piece puzzle shows Tatty Teddy hard at work in the kitchen icing cupcakes in time for tea The scene is packed full of colourful objects puzzle fans will love discovering including the pretty little cupcakes, cookies, cups and kitchen equipment.

The puzzle pieces use a specially designed softclick technology which means each piece just slots in perfectly and are made from strong premium grade cardboard that has a glare free linen finish.

As I said this Tatty Teddy puzzle is just right as a gift for any puzzle fan looking for a charming detailed and colourful scene to while away the hours

Another great puzzle from Ravensburger

Available on Amazon

Visit the Ravensburger website for some other great Mother's Day gift ideas 

Monday, 17 March 2014

100 XXL of The Muppets Puzzle

The Muppets was one of the first comedy sketch shows I used to watch when I was young.  It was shown regularly on the Singapore English Channel.  I used to watch it every day and Kermit was my favourite but I did love Miss Piggy too.
Now they’ve come out of The Muppets show and into a new film called Muppets Most Wanted.  It will be coming out soon and it tells the story of the entire Muppets gang who are on a global tour, selling out grand theatres in some of Europe’s most exciting destinations.  However, mayhem follows the Muppets overseas as they find themselves unwittingly entangled in an international crime caper.

Ravensburger Puzzle has produced this 100 XXL of the Muppets cast members’ puzzle for puzzle fans aged 6 plus!  This is our first time testing out Ravensburger puzzles.  I have to say I am very impressed with the range of puzzles they have.  Do check them out on Twitter @RavensburgerPC as they regularly host giveaways!
Ms C is only 4 years old but she is ready to do the puzzle with a little help from her dad.  The puzzle measures 49 cm x 36 cm with 100 pieces.  The picture is very colourful and attractive.  It comes in a matt finish.  The pieces are thick, strong and easy to join it up.  The only problem is there are a lot of bits coming off back of the pieces.  Once the bits are brushed off, it is fine afterwards.  The puzzle can be done over and over again and kept safely in its box when not required.  We had to dissemble it as we don’t have space to keep it out.
We love doing jigsaw puzzles at home as they are a great work out for the brain and can be beneficial for improving problem solving, motor skills and eye co-ordination for both children and adults.  If you or your children are a big fans of The Muppets, you might like to consider this.

Disclosure: We have received the product to do an honest review.

Monday, 10 March 2014

Prehistoric Fun with Science X


Ravensburger have bought out a fabulous Science kit aimed at young scientists aged 8 and over. This big piece of kit is the Science X Prehistoric Excavation Kit and contains lots of fun experiments and projects all to do with dinosaurs. It’s sure to get young ones asking “how do I get to be a palaeontologist”

Inside the box is all the gear they need for lots of amazing projects. For some of them we found we do need a few odd household items too such as a box, tape or some glue.


The science kit comes with a very useful manual which not only tells you how to do each experiment but also explains lots of facts about the dinosaur age.


Inside the box is 1 ammonite, 1 Excavation Block, 1 Excavation Tool. 1 Thermometer, 1 Magnifying Glass, Plaster Powder, Triops Eggs, Triops Food, Triops sand, 1 Meganeura Model, 1 time line, 5 Plaster forms, 1 triops basin, 1 T-Rex model and instructions. There are 15 different things to do so the kit will last a while.
Some of f experiments involve putting together a giant dragonfly and a deadly T-Rex using the included parts.


The models can then be proudly kept on display.
A few experiments involve making plaster creations from a Trilobite mould and plaster of Paris. Once the plaster moulds are made, further experiments can be done using these.
In Ryan’s kit was a piece of Ammonite.
Ammonite is an invertebrate with spiral chambers on it’s shell. It started during the Carboniferous (360 million years ago) and is therefore certainly an old slice of history.


Using the included magnifying glass, Ryan is able to look at the ammonite in detail.
Ryan enjoyed doing the Excavation block. Using the excavation tool he quickly dug away at the block to reveal his buried dinosaur.


Inside the block was a mini Stegosaurus.
The biggest experiment in the kit is Triops. Ryan had Triops last year and enjoyed growing them and watching them get bigger. It’s amazing how they come to life and quite surprising how big they can grow.


Inside this set is a plastic tank plus triop eggs, food, sand and a thermometer. We find the best water to use for Triops is cooled boiled from the kettle and find they are best placed near the window for sun light. They generally last about a month or so and usually end up with maybe 3 big ones surviving longest.

The Prehistoric Expedition provides hours of fun whilst learning. Even I learnt a few fun dinosaur facts whilst helping Ryan.

The kit can be purchased from Amazon at a reduced price of £26.72.