Alternative Easter Gifts

It’s Wednesday, we are officially half way through the week.  I am feeling absolutely rubbish and am off to the doctor’s as have woken up with an extremely sore and swollen throat.  The joys of being immuno-suppressed!  Today I wanted to share with you some fantastic ideas for alternative Easter gift ideas.  I am by no means anti-chocolate and the kids will be getting some, but I also like to get them some other bits and pieces to go with it.  We are still making our way through the Christmas goodies after all!

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Hallmark*

I was lucky enough to receive some fab goodies from Hallmark and wanted to share them as they are perfect for this Easter time.  Their selection of Easter cards is fantastic as ever, and my niece is going to love the Disney princesses one.  I always like to use Easter (like Christmas) as a time to check in with friends and family I don’t normally see as often, so will send a little card with a note in.

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The boy’s tried to take these but I have clung on and they are staying as my desk buddies (for now at least).  The Itty Bitty’s are fab and come in all different ranges.  The boys already have some of the Star Wars and Disney ones, especially Leo who is an avid little plush toy collector.  They are a great idea if you have a little fan of one of the sets and you can start their collection off alongside their Easter eggs.  I love the fact that they aren’t too expensive and kids can easily save up their pocket money to add to their collection too.  It helps teach them about saving money for what they want but is not so expensive that they get bored.

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Playmobil Eggs

Me and Ste spotted these while shopping in Asda the other week and thought they were a great idea!  Still egg themed and with a range of different sets inside.  I love Playmobil toys and remember having hours of fun as a child with my sets.

Craft Activities

Lots of shops have a good range of affordable, Easter themed craft sets available.  We picked up these polystyrene eggs to decorate and some DIY Easter cards which Leo really enjoyed making.  Riley mostly enjoyed writing inside them – his new found love for bubble writing (remember that craze at his age) makes him so much more willing when it comes to card writing!  I have seen a great tutorial to marble eggs using shaving foam and food colouring so going to try that with the boys next time they are here.

I have also seen great sets in The Works, Home Bargains and Poundland and they are all so reasonably priced so a great way to keep little ones amused during the school holidays.

Baking Goodies*

We were really lucky to be sent this huge haul of baking stuff from Dr Oetker and have already started using it – check out our video of us making Chocolate Easter nests.

We love to cook and bake both for and with the kids.  Leo is especially keen and often helps out with making dinner and pudding when he can.  He was in awe of this mega parcel and can’t wait to get working on some more recipes in the Easter holidays.

I really love the loaf cake in a box idea.  Just like the cupcakes you can make from a box, these create a whole loaf cake and the boys are excited to get free rein on decorating one next time they are here!  You only need to add milk so super simple if you need a quick treat for visitors over the Easter period and available in three flavours – Banana & Chocolate, Double Chocolate and Lemon & Poppy Seed.

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Baking is a great way to keep them busy during the school break – even something simple like letting them loose with some icing pens and plain digestive or rich tea biscuits keeps them occupied for ages!  Easter shaped biscuits, homemade hot cross buns and a roast lamb dinner are all on our Easter menu!

What2Buy4Kids*

What2Buy4Kids is a fab website with a great selection of different, fun toys for kids.  I’ve picked a few of my favourites to give you an idea of what is available but pop on over to their website as they have some great stuff which would make perfect little gifts.

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This colourful farm mobile is perfect for little ones who are too young to have chocolate yet.  The bright colours will really draw their attention and be a great feature above any cot.  £12.99

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These cute Easter finger puppets are now on sale – only £1,99 instead of £4.99 – what a bargain!

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I think gardening sets make fab Easter gifts and there is a wide range of them over on the website.  Sunflowers are always fun and we like to have growing races to see who can grow the tallest!

Check out the What2Buy4Kids Easter gift ideas here and don’t forget to use my discount code – SPOONMU218 – to get an extra 10% off!  Happy shopping!

Dressing Up

I bought this cute little dress up outfit for Layla from Home Bargains and it was just £4.99.  Perfect for Easter weekend and she will be able to dress up again whenever she likes.

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The obligatory Easter bonnet making should be commencing too – enjoy!  Here are a few of our past creations.  Missing the Yellow Angry Birds one we made a couple years ago which was epic but Pinterest has some great ideas for every level of skill.

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I came across this page on Facebook a couple of years ago but she is now on Pinterest too and still making the cutest little designs!  These bunnies can be made to order so all you have to do is pop over a message and they can be designed to your specifications.  Check them out on Instagram over at Loopie & Bean

You can also purchase the pattern to make yourself on their Etsy shop

Easter Printable

I have teamed up with Education.com to give you access to this great little Easter printable.  Spring is in the air with this cute crossword! Be sure to check out Education.com for more fun learning resources.  Both my boys love puzzle and colouring pages and the ones on this website are educational and fun.

I hope you like all these ideas and are looking forward to a fab Easter.  With regards to chocolate we have an Easter egg pinata for the boys to do this year and we are doing a little Peppa Pig Easter Egg hunt for Layla.  Both of these are from Asda and we are super excited!  What do you have planned?  Let me know in the comments below and I hope you have a fantastic Easter weekend.

NatalieThe Spoonie Mummy

*All products marked with a star have been gifted to me in return for including them in this post.  This however, does not influence my opinion and I only share things I believe my readers will like!

January Favourites

Can’t believe it is that time already, January has flown by!  Hope you have all enjoyed the first month of 2018.  It is typically known as the most depressing month but I have come into the new year with a positive attitude and am really looking forward to what I can experience, achieve and accomplish this year.  On with the post and here are some of the things I have been loving this month!

First up is a new series I have been watching on Netflix.  I am a bit late to this one as most people I know watched it when it was shown on the BBC, but I am really enjoying Doctor Foster.  Suranne Jones is amazing as the lead character and definitely deserves the awards she has received for this role.  I am about three quarters of the way through season one.  Without spoiling too much she plays a doctor who finds out her husband is cheating on her but rather than confront him straight away, she starts to plot her revenge while still acting as the dutiful wife.  It is really interesting and I am not sure I would be able to be as controlled as she is.  A must watch if, like me, you didn’t watch it when it aired on TV.

Doctor Foster (Netflix)

 

Sticking to a TV theme I also advise you all to check out Bad Moms Christmas.  Me and Ste watched it a couple of weeks ago and it is fab!  I really enjoyed the first one and so was looking forward to this one and it didn’t disappoint.  A great cast and storyline, sometimes sequels can be a bit of a let down but I throughly enjoyed this one.

Food next!  I have been trying to eat a little more thoughtfully this month as the steroids have definitely taken their toll this last year.  I am now on a reducing plan with them and can’t wait to be rid of the them for good.  I discovered these and thought they would be a bit of a healthier snack and I can just grab a handful when I fancy something to munch on.  They are the Jacobs Cracker Crisps and are so delicious and a few always fill me up enough so I can last until my next meal.

Jacobs Cracker Crisps

I have also discovered the Just Tasty packs of sandwiches from Aldi and am in love with the smoked cheese ones.  Think I have had about four in the last couple of weeks!  It is nice to find tasty sandwiches on plain bread (this bread has sundried tomatoes in but I mean without the seeds).  With my stoma I am unable to eat the multi grain breads so often the only choices are plain cheese or ham on white bread!  This is super tasty and they also have a pulled pork, stuffing and apple sauce one which is yummy too (but not as much as this one).

My next couple of things I have been loving in January were a couple of things I have ‘treated’ myself to.  The first is these Blom Cards.  I have been following Anna (aka Mamas Scrapbook on Instagram) for a while now and she keeps me highly entertained with her Instagram stories.  She is a psychotherapist and has created Blom Cards with one of her designer friends.  They contain 30  cards, each with a psychologically grounded insight or challenge and I have really found them helpful.  I keep them on my make-up desk so I can see them every morning when I am getting ready for the day.  I do not aim to complete one a day but stick with a card until the opportunity presents itself, or just bear the advice given on it for that whole week.  You can purchase your own over on the Etsy shop by clicking here

blom cards

The other treat came from the lovely ‘The Mummy Club’, who sent me their January subscription box to try out.  The boxes contain treats, support and pick me ups for mums and mums to be.  My box was filled with some amazing things but I won’t spoil it too much by going into it, as you will be seeing a complete review of the box very soon.  You are able to sign up for the monthly boxes, get a ‘mini’ box or even send one to a friend as a treat which is a lovely idea.  Check them out on Instagram and look out for the full review coming soon.  I have now signed up for a monthly box which shows how much I loved it!  I really love supporting small businesses and love the ethos of mums supporting mums.

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The Mummy Club January box

One of my favourite beauty treats this month has been these Essence nail polishes.  They are super affordable (£1.60 each in Wilko) and the nail SOS treatment was just £2 and has really been helping to strengthen my nails.  They come in a huge range of colours, apply nicely and last well.

Essence nail polish

My other beauty treat came from a Christmas set Ste bought me.  I try and use the hand scrub from it at least twice a week (normally on my face exfoliate and mask evenings).  My skin can become dry and dehydrated very quickly and the last few weeks I have even started to get splits and sores on my knuckles but using this gives my hands a real boost. I follow it up with the hand cream which I use every night.  Keeping it next to my bed helps remind me to do it!  I had never really thought of using a scrub for my hands but it has really helped with the dry skin, particularly on my knuckles.

champneys hand scrub

Lastly, my favourtie book of the month has to be Giovanna Fletcher’s Some Kind Of Woonderful.  ‘Chick-Lit’ books aren’t typically my favourite style to read but I do enjoy the odd one now and again as I find them easy to read and uplifting.  This one however, eschewed the typical everything suddenly falls into the main characters lap and she lives happily ever after and just seemed so much more real.  It showed the struggle of ending a long term relationship and how you begin to pull your life back together.  Highly recommend this one and will be checking out her other books too.  You can still sign up to my book club, check out my post about it here

I am pleased to announce I have teamed up with a fantastic company called What2Buy4Kids.  They sell educational and unique toys and gifts for children from birth to 12 years and the customer service is second to none.  You can visit their website by clicking here and I have a discount code which will give you 10% off any orders placed which is SPOONMU218.  Happy shopping!

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Last but not least I had to mention the boy’s and their fun in their ‘Gelli Baff’.  If you follow me on Instagram you will have seen the photos.  The boys each got one in their stockings, this was Leo’s and Riley has the ‘Crackle Baff’ which we haven’t tried yet.  They both absolutely loved it and spent an hour playing in the bath and having fun.  They come in different colours and wash out really easily, so no mess afterwards.  I wasn’t sure how Riley would react at first as he can be funny with different textures, but after five minutes of getting used to it her was having as much fun as Leo.

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So those are my January favourites for you this month, I hope you enjoy checking out the ones of interest to you.  Let me know anything you have been loving this month in the comments below and here is to an exciting February.

NatalieThe Spoonie Mummy

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