Just in time for the much anticipated release of the new ‘Finding Dory’ film (in cinemas now) LittleLife sent us their new Dory Swim Bag to test out. Finding Nemo is a firm favourite here and has been since Meg was a teeny thing so there was no doubt that the kids would recognise the much loved Dory. In fact, I think Meg was quite jealous that Eli was trialling the bag and not her!
Finding a decent swim bag has proven a little bit of a challenge for us. The kids go swimming weekly and it’s nice for them (and me!) for them to be able to carry their own stuff. But many of the typical ‘wet bags’ which are currently available on the market are just too big for Eli. The drawstrings aren’t adjustable meaning they sit too low on his back and once his swimming gear is wet then they become far too heavy for him.
Although compact in size, making it perfect for the younger child, the LittleLife Dory Swim Bag has a 10 litre capacity which gives plenty of room for all of your swimming gear: towel, swim shorts and goggles and the roll top fastening makes it easy for Eli to access on his own. The bag is quite narrow so it does become more of an oblong shape once the towel has been placed inside, but Eli didn’t seem to find this awkward; although a shorter child may find the bag sits quite low if the straps aren’t adjusted properly.
The fabric is waterproof with a soft padded back which makes it comfortable for him to wear and the straps are adjustable too meaning no bag dragging along the wet changing room floor! There’s a hidden side pocket which has a zip and would be ideal if an older child needed to take locker money or spending money into the pool or to the beach with them.
The details on the bag are also very sweet from the fins to the tail and the bag is easily recognisable as the famous Dory and we have had expressions of joy from many children at swimming lessons when we have walked in and they have spotted the telltale blue and yellow fish.
We’ve had a number of LittleLife products over the years and they have all lasted well; keeping their shape and remaining intact despite prolonged use and this definitely looks to be the case for their Swim Bag range too. Although the bag isn’t cheap, retailing at £24.99, I’d suggest that it’s a worth investment for a bag that can be used for trips to the beach, the pool or just as a daily backpack if you have a particular fan of the movie and I have been really quite impressed over all.
We were sent a LittleLife Dory Swim Bag for the purposes of this review. However, all thoughts and opinions are our own.
The summer is undoubtedly a hectic period and it’s difficult to find time to sit down and gather together all my thoughts on the things we have been up to. It’s also more difficult to find a spare moment to myself with six weeks to fill for Meg and Eli too! Usually I drop off the grid a little bit on the blog and I know that others in the community do likewise as we all go adventuring and memory-making but I’m going to try and be a little better and at least give you a snapshot into what we have been getting up to. I might forget for a week or two but do pop back and there will almost certainly be something for you to see. If not, then my Instagram account is the place to catch up with us over the summer as I will regularly be found over there. Do pop by and say hello. But onto the first week! It was kind of a cheat week as the kids were still at school on Monday and Tuesday so I had a bit more time to rush around getting all kinds of last minute bits and pieces done and preparing for the start of the holidays.
We’ve had a few slow mornings which have been perfect; after the longest school term it has been truly blissful to not have to rush uniform and breakfast and finding reading and homework books but to just take things at our own pace.
Of course Eli is such a high energy boy that we couldn’t spend all day at home so we have also tried to combine movie watching and chilling out with some time outside as well. We spent the first day in the pinewoods near to our home; one of our favourite places to be and it’s always so quiet.
We saw, literally one other person the whole time we were out and although it was clouding over when we first set out, the sun soon showed up and we spent hours just running through the woods, up and down the dunes and generally having a merry old time.
The kids favourite game at the moment is Harry Potter so I just found myself a comfortable tree stump and read whilst they scurried about pretending to be in the Forbidden Forest.
We also took advantage of a summer offer and headed to our local Trampoline Park; we couldn’t have chosen a better day either as it rained for almost the entire morning.
In and amongst all the busyness there was even time to go and meet a very special new addition to the family. I tried to leave my broodiness at the door but really…it was very difficult! I hope that you are enjoying the summer break as much as we are!
I have to admit, I am a bit of a sucker for magazines for the kids, the brighter the better! It’s a great way to keep them occupied from the stickers to the activities, not forgetting the toys which usually accompany them as well. So when we were asked whether we would be interested in checking out the new Bing magazine…I knew we were onto a winner. Bing is a character from a CBeebies show and the theme for the first magazine is the outdoors and playing outside; something which is very timely as we have just started the summer holidays!
Aimed at children aged between 2-5 years there is a range of activities included from completing scenes using stickers to letter formation, craft and cutting out to colouring in. The activities are simple and effective, teaching basic skills whilst still being captivating for a younger audience. Published by Egmont, it is a monthly magazine and costs £3.99. This is a pretty average price.
The first magazine comes with a 5 piece garden playset which included a water squirting frog, Eli’s newest friend who seems to come everywhere with us now!
The variety of activities held Eli’s attention and weren’t too long or complex meaning he didn’t lose interest; and he isn’t a boy known for wanting to sit still and complete anything if it takes longer than a few minutes. As you might expect, you get to see all of the favourite characters from the show, the pages are all brightly coloured and simple to understand and there are handy suggestions to parents of other activities you could engage with to help take your child’s learning further.
The activities cover a broad range meaning that those at the younger end of the age bracket and the older end are not excluded.
Overall Eli really enjoyed exploring this new magazine and we will certainly be looking out for it in the future.
We will have been married for 9 years at the end of next month and yet there is still something which continues to divide us…fashion. James has a very simple style which centres mainly around the colour blue, the darker the better. He will, occasionally, branch out to dark grey or sometimes even black but that is pretty much where it ends. Unless you are talking about garish flowery shirts and then he can’t seem to get enough of those! So when I was asked whether I would like to create a post around how I would dress him for the day I had to smile. I shall try to keep my own personal preferences under wraps and think about how we could reach an agreement on some of the very stylish items featured at House of Fraser. There is a huge choice of shorts and tops from House of Fraser that it was really tricky to choose but I finally settled on a choice of two items from each department which I think would be two pretty good looks when we go on our holiday in a couple of weeks. James’ style is very laidback overall and I have tried to find a nice blend of items which aren’t too wild in colour; I think they pretty much meet any brief that he would give me about the type of items he would be willing to wear and who doesn’t look a Jack & Jones tee, even if it is bright in colour?!
It’s no secret that I love reading and at the start of the year I decided to blend a slightly different focus into my Youtube content and began sharing regular book videos. I was excited to discover that there is a whole community of ‘booktubers’ who love nothing more than sharing and discussing their thoughts on books. I was in heaven! There was so much going on from Q&A’s to monthly round-ups, book hauls to readathons and I have been dipping in and out of joining in with them all. This past week has seen me joining in with something called the ‘BookTube-A-Thon‘ a week dedicated to reading and various different challenges. The basis of BookTube-A-Thon means that you pretty much have to read one book a day, something I have never previously managed to do but having finished my freelance work for the summer with the kids still at school and the sun blazing down, I was pretty confident I could give it a whirl. Who needs clean clothes, a tidy house and home cooked food anyway?!
So far, so good. I have read two books and completed the first two challenges.
I’m about halfway through my book I’m reading ‘only after sunset’ (see my TBR video here for the different challenges involved) and 100 pages into The BFG which is my choice for the book to movie adaptation challenge. Unfortunately, I have left my biggest books until last which is making me a little less confident about getting them all read by Sunday; I did notice with Cinder that I had to keep reminding myself to slow down and take in the words and not speed-read. Whilst the purpose is to get the books read within the week I still think you need to appreciate and enjoy the books themselves, surely? Hopefully though the rest of the week will be just as successful! I’ll let you know.