Click and Construct with K’Nex – Rad Rides and Battle Bow Building Set

This product was sent for inclusion in this post in exchange for our honest review. All opinions are our own.

Moose has always loved STEAM toys which encourage building but up until now we have never really played with K’nex. He was absolutely thrilled then when 2 awesome K’nex sets were sent to us to try out.

Founded in 1992, K’NEX, part of the Basic Fun! family of brands, did not set out to become an educational toy company, all we wanted to do was show kids that the only limit to building was the size of their imagination! More than 25 years later, K’NEX prides itself on connecting Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math with imagination. K’NEX product line has building toys specially designed for every age group and skill level.

Rad Rides

The K’Nex Rad Rides set is aimed at children aged 7-12. There are a lot of small fiddly bits so I can completely understand this being the target age group. Moose is not 7 yet but he had no trouble fitting the parts together – there were a few exceptions but not as many as I thought there might be if I’m honest!

In the K’Nex Rad Rides set there are over 200 pieces and instructions to build 3 vehicles – there are 9 more to find on www.knex.com/instructions

The first thing Moose did was to choose which vehicle he wanted to make, he chose one from the set of instructions supplied with the set. The vehicle Moose chose had only 7 steps. Aside from assembling the wheels and axels he pretty much just got on with the rest of it himself. Result!

Battle Bow Building Set

Moose was so excited when he saw the Battle Bow Building Set.

The Battle Bow Building Set has a choice of 4 different models to make but Moose knew straight away that he was going to make the bow. I mean, it’s a working bow and he’s 6 so..

Other model instructions included in the set were a crossbow and a blaster!

This was a bit more intense than the previous set. Moose really had to concentrate in places to be able to follow the instructions. It didn’t help that the colours of the pieces were not always the same colour in the instructions so we had to change tact and look at the shapes rather than the colours.

Once we got the hang of it though it was easy enough and actually turned out to be a lovely activity to do together.

After you put the bow together you need to pull back the spring part and insert 1 of the 5 darts into the barrel. Then just pull the trigger and it fires a surprising distance.

What did we think?

K’nex has been a bit of a revelation for us. As I mentioned earlier it had never been on our RADAR before but Moose absolutely LOVED it. The instructions were tricky to follow in places. However, as well as building the supplied instructions. Part of the fun of this kind of toy is using your imagination to build bigger than the box!

The K’nex sets are compatible with each other and with K’nex classic so you could potentially build your collection to be huge! I love STEAM toys and anything which encourages kids to use their imagination so this was right up my street!

K’nex is available from John Lewis and all other good toy shops.

Our first week with Bonnie

Last week we had a new addition to our tribe in the form of a Springer Spaniel Beagle cross pup called Bonnie.

The plan was to wait it out and start looking for a new dog maybe at some point early next year. As it turns out that was a crap plan and I really had underestimated the difference a dog makes to my health.

Since losing Fudge last September my physical and mental health has nosedived. I am just a much better human when I have a dog around!

So, last week I had a ping on my phone and saw a post from a guy who was fairly local and who was having to find a new home for his dog. Not her fault or his, unfortunately his very young daughter had allergies so it just wasn’t working out.

I messaged him and told him all about us. I had everything crossed as I had obviously already fallen for her photo. In my defence it would have been hard not to.

A few hours later we were on our way to meet them both. Now, I had not intended to take Bonnie home the same day. I was just going to go along and see her in person (in dog?) and generally just see whether we were a good match.

It is pretty common knowledge that I have little patience at the best of times and zero chill whatsoever when it comes to dogs. As soon as I saw her I was sold.

Her (previous) owner suggested we go for a walk and over the course of the next half an hour told me all about Bonnie and how clearly gutted he was to be having to find her a new home.

Next stop, home!

Needless to say there was never any doubt in my mind where Bonnie belonged. She simply had to come home with me and luckily her previous owner agreed!

Over the course of the last week we have learnt so much about Bonnie

Things she loves :

  • Cheese
  • Sleeping
  • Water
  • All of the treats
  • Snuggling on the sofa
  • Rubbing herself against hedges as we walk
  • A stuffed Pheasant we have named Clucky
  • Very long walks
  • Other dogs

Things she definitely does not love:

  • Birds
  • Cats
  • Being brushed (it’s a mitt which she just about tolerates)
  • Sleeping in.
  • The magnetic dog gate (which worked for 15yrs with Fudge) which Bonnie pushed down within 5 minutes in a very indignant fashion

In the last week we have only had 1 very early morning wake up call where she started howling and crying at 4am. She hasn’t done it since though so hopefully it was a one off.

Bonnie is absolutely the dog I had pictured when I was missing company. She follows me everywhere and is such a sweet girl. We have already broken our no dogs on the sofa rule. She doesn’t shed too much and she is very good to cuddle up to in the evenings. The rule was stupid anyway..

On the plus side for me, my step count has soared! We go all over the place and it’s going to be so much fun to take her to the beach and to other places further afield. I am already making lists of dog friendly places local to us.

I cannot wait to introduce her to her doggy cousins Bonzo and Rosie! We are off to the dog park during the week to let them run wild (ish) and I know she is going to love it!

Bonnie worked previously in a school helping the children with anxiety and I think (especially with her being a lockdown pup) that this has really helped with her socialisation.

I honestly feel like I have won the doggy lottery!

 

Meal plan – The why am I still freezing in May edition

I am pretty sure this time last year we were headed into a heatwave. I mean, sure, the world had completely changed and we couldn’t go anywhere but hey, it was warm!

As I write this my toes are absolutely frozen and I am contemplating getting a blanket to wrap myself in. In May. What?!

In food terms this basically means that if you think I am eating cold salads this week you are massively mistaken. We need food that feels like a hug please so I will be at least 50% potato by the end of this week.

I am still struggling with eating sensibly during the day but breakfasts will be egg based and then lunches will mainly be picky bits rather than an actual meal I think. I am trying to keep it healthy but at the moment I just want to eat and that’s hard to ignore. Still, on the upside we have a new addition to the family to focus on and as a result I am moving a lot more than I have been in some months which is great!

This week in food

Monday – King prawn risotto and green veg (I wish I could say I made this but it was an M&S family meal and it was lush)

Tuesday – Chicken burger with crunchy potato slices

Wednesday – Tomato soup and bread (admittedly followed by bakewell tart and cream)

Thursday – Creamy chicken slice (it’s a flat pie) with mash and veg

Friday – Chicken curry with rice and homemade flatbreads

Saturday – Pulled pork with baps and chunky sweet potato wedges

Sunday – The rest of the pork reheated in gravy with roast potatoes and broccoli, stuffing and apple butter.

 

Add some magic to your home decor with Airsai Floately levitating plant pot

Ad This product was sent to us in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are our own

 

I am not the sort of person who throws things away. This is a good thing for the most part. I don’t really tend to follow fashion, instead, I find what I love and whatever it is stays with me for the long haul. 

I have clothes much older than my children and other stuff older than even that! I’m not the sort of person who really looks for specifically eco friendly products but I like to think that by keeping things for ages I am doing my own bit. 

However. Occasionally I will see things that look really cool and speak to me. The Airsai by Floately was one such thing. Originally spotted on Instagram, I was instantly captivated! 

green plant

What is it?!

The Airsai by Floately is a levitating plant pot. Yes, that’s correct – LEVITATING. Once in place this lovely little pot floats approximately 2cm above it’s base. It’s held in place by magnetic force where it spins 360 degrees which is not only incredibly soothing to watch, it also means that your plant gets an even amount of sunlight so it can grow evenly. Win win! 

The Airsai pot and base are made from plastic with a wood effect which is far more convincing than I was expecting. It has a lovely finish and feels like it is very good quality (ie will stand up to even my clumsy mitts) 

It is not a huge product so it would not be difficult to find room for this – I would recommend either an air plant or succulent due to the size of the pot. 

Having indoor plants around has been proven not only to be an excellent stress reliever but also increases work productivity and they are a great motivator too – if you can take your eyes off them of course! 

What did I think?

airsai floately

This is such a simplistic product but I love having plants around and the Airsai really is mesmerising to watch. The only thing I would say is that it will need to be kept out of the reach of small children. If knocked off it’s axis the pot drops down toward the base with some real force as it is quite a powerful magnet! 

My children really love watching our “magic” plant. It would also be a really cool thing to have in the background on Zoom calls – you would soon know who was paying attention, that’s for sure! 

Where to buy?

You can buy your Airsai on the Floately website www.floately.com and see it in action below! 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s Ben 10 HERO TIME

Ad| we were sent this product in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are our own.

Our first run in with Ben 10 was waaay back when Col was little. Who knew that more than a decade on we would still be enjoying the adventures of a little boy called Ben and his very special watch – the Omnitrix. 

When Ben wears the Omnitrix it allows him to alter his DNA at will and transform into dozens of different alien species, each with their own unique abilities. My favourites (what? it HAS been over a decade of watching – I’m invested..) have to Heatblast and Four Arms. 

Moose was absolutely beside himself when we were sent some of the brand new Hero Time toys to play with. 

I love any kind of toy that pushes the idea of imaginative play. With Ben 10 there are so many possibilities. The Ben 10 Deluxe Omnitrix Creator Set encourages not only role play. Your child could play as Ben 10, Gwen or Kevin Levin even! But with the Omnitrix Creator, you can mix and match parts to create your own custom Omnitrix or Antitrix! 100+ combinations!

We loved how colourful and easy to use the Omnitrix was and Moose had loads of fun trying out all of the different colour combinations. He seems to love a villain (we aren’t worried yet) so there was a lot of Kevin 11 play!

As well as the Omnitrix Creator set we were also sent 2 alien figures. Omni-Kix Four Arms and Omni-Naut Heatblast!

There are quite a few aliens in the series and I know Moose will be adding the other characters to his wish list. He had so much fun playing with them!

All of the figures have moveable arms and legs. Some of the parts are even interchangeable so you could create your own heroes!

The figures are 10cm tall so a great size for taking along in the car as well as playing with at home.

The Ben 10 Deluxe Omnitrix Creator Set and Ben 10 space figures retail at £29.99 and £9.99 respectively and are available from all good toy shops

Head over to www.evolutioncomps.co.uk/Ben10 for your chance to win a fab Ben 10 prize. Find out more about the cool toys as well as more info on Ben himself!