Disney Pixars Cars 3 Franchise review

We love a bit of Disney in our household, especially after our recent visit to EuroDisney. The boys have a newfound love for it and are enjoying it even more. They are spending more of an interest in Disney films and the characters; from the old ones to the new.

Disney isn’t just all about tiaras and marrying princes there are also many of the old classics like Lion King, Bambi and Pinocchio – also not forgetting the high-speed, blazing fast racers of Cars.

One of the latest Disney films to be released on 14th July, 2017 is Cars 3. The legendary Lightening Mcqueen strikes again and finds himself out of the game when a next gen- racer Jackson Storm hits the Piston Cup. Hoping to get back in the game, Lightening seeks the help of a young technician Cruz Ramirez.

Disney have announced an exciting new product collection that will bring the high-speed action of the highly anticipated Disney•Pixar film Cars 3 to households nationwide.

The boys already have the previous DVDs of Cars and a few of the franchises to play with. So they were all revved up when they were sent some of the latest products to review.

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Jackson Storm Remote Control Car RRP £17.99 (disney store)

Lightening McQueen Speed Launcher By LEGO Juniors RRP £7.99 (disney store)

Cars 3 Drinks Bottle RRP £6.99 (disney store)

Cars 3 Book of the Film By Parragon RRP £5.99 (asda)

Lightening McQueen LEGO Launcher – The youngest couldn’t wait to get stuck in and as his older brother – who absolutely loves LEGO – was away he took the chance to start with the speed launcher. He doesn’t normally show an interest, as much as his brother, for Lego but he was really excited to build the car. The sets are ideal for children aged 5-7

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It was easy to build – just as the box says with simple to follow instructions. He started with the car first and then on to the launcher.

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The instructions are picture related, so he found them easy to follow and keep up with. Each page showing you what pieces were needed for that particular part.

Whats great about this set is that it is a usable toy after it is built. The wheels turn and the launcher actually works. It doesn’t launch the car very far but it is still fun to build and play with. It also gives the children a sense of achievement and pride, having built something by themselves. He would normally take sets apart once he had built them but this one has stayed by his bedside and is being used every day. He was very proud of himself for putting it together.

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Jackson Storm Remote Control Car – Get the feel of what it’s like to race in the Piston Cup with this remote control car. It may be small but it is very powerful. The car is a designed in detail with some impressive artwork and comes with a steering-wheel controller. The controller is easy to use; it drives forward and backwards, steers left and right. It is the perfect size for little hands and simple to use

20170622_070613The actual size of the Car  is L15 x H5 x W7cm approx.

Any child that loves Cars would fall in love with this little beauty. It is rear wheel driven and very responsive. It is turned on by using the middle button on the centre of the wheel control. We found that If it is not used for a while it tends to turn it self off and all you have to do is press the button again to get it working.

The design is sleek and very eye-catching, It is a solid and sturdy car. We took it to the garden to see how well it would drive over the patio (excuse the weeds)

The boys have had so much fun with this car. I do believe that there are more to collect, so you could hold your own Piston Cup and see who could be the winner.

Cars 3 Drinks Bottle – These drinks bottles are ideal for little racers to keep hydrated, with detailed artwork of Lightening McQueen and Jackson Storm, they are bright to look at and perfect for pack lunches. They have a rubber tyre detail around the bottom of the bottle giving little hands that extra grip when drinking from the bottle, but also keeps them sturdy when placed on to the table.

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The lid also has the tyre detail with a button to open it. Once the lid flips open it has a flexible straw hidden within.

The bottle holds 12oz and is only designed for cold drinks only. They are easy to come apart to wash and store well in the cupboard. The size of the bottle also makes them perfect to fit into lunch bags.

I found that with the fun designs the boys were asking for their bottles to be filled up more than normal, they make drinking cool!

Cars 3 Book of the Film – This 144 page paper-back book with an 8 page full colour insert is excellent for any budding reader. Once you have watched the film you can relive it again and again in this book.

‘When the legendary Lightening Mcqueen is suddenly pushed out of the sport he loves by a new generation of blazing racers, he needs to get back in the game, and FAST! Can #95 prove that he isn’t out of the game yet? The next Piston Cup will test the heart of a champion on racing’s biggest stage!’

With seven Piston Cups wins under his belt and an undying passion for motor sport, can Mcqueen ride carry on riding high with the new generation of blazing racers?

There are many new characters in this new book, including Jackson Storm and Cruz Ramirez.

I have been trying to encourage my youngest away from books that have more picture than text and this book certainly meets that criteria. Apart from the 8 page full colour insert there are no more illustrations throughout the book. This means that he can concentrate on the story without being distracted by the pictures. Although the illustrations that are in the book are very colourful and good, which does help with the imagination.

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He is really enjoying reading the book and it is keeping him engaged.

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The book is ideal for young readers who are developing their reading skills.

These Cars 3 products have helped the children carry on with their newfound love of Disney. We are carrying on the magic at home.

We was sent these products for the purpose of this review

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Make your own Yoda Costume for World Book Day and A Star Wars Books Giveaway

World Book Day is closely upon us and it’s time to start thinking about what costume your children will be wearing on the day. My boys normally like to make up a costume from clothes that they find from in their wardrobe but this year my middle boy has requested a rather different costume. Which was perfect as we have been challenged by Egmont publishing to create a Star Wars themed Costume for World Book Day.

Last year we made a last-minute costume by raiding the wardrobes, particularly looking for clothes that were in neutral colours and created Luke Skywalker. This costume has been used many times over the past year and didn’t cost us a penny.

This year, the boy has requested Yoda. This year I am prepared. I ordered some fleece material from Ebay and once it arrived I got out my sewing machine and stitched away.

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You will need:

  • Beige Fleece Material- mtr depending on how tall your child is. and the width of the material. We ordered a metre at 150cm wide
  • Emerald Green Fleece Material – 1/2 mtr 150cm wide
  • Brown long sleeve t-shirt
  • Dark coloured trousers
  • Sewing machine or needle and cotton to hand sew
  • Green Facepaint
  • White chalk or material pen
  • Pins
  • Scissors

Instructions:

I found a pattern online from www.fleecefun.com that I adapted to fit my son. I used his dressing gown as a guide for the measurements and just adjusted the pattern where it needed it. The pattern can be printed out and stuck together to make one big one.

Yoda Robe

  1. Place the material down on the fold and put the pattern on the top. The back needs to be cut on the fold to create one piece and you need two pieces of the front. Use pins to keep it in place and draw around with your chalk. This is where I adjusted the pattern and moved it about to the length and width I wanted. Cut out the pieces. You will only have one back and two fronts

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2. Place the two fronts down on to the back. Tack into place.

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3. Stitch along the under arm and side seam and the sleeve to secure the front and back together. Turn inside out. You can finish off the edges with a hem but I just left ours as the material will not fray.

4. Cut out a long piece of the fleece for the belt.

Et Voila! You now have a jacket fit for a Yoda

Yoda Head and Ears:

I used an old wooly hat to draw around and to get the size of Yodas head.

  1. Lay the green fleece material down on the fold and place your ear pattern on top. Secure in place with pins. Draw around with chalk and cut out the pieces. You should have 4 ear pieces and two head pieces.

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2. Stitch around the edge of the ears

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3. Turn them inside out so that the seams are on the inside

4. Now you need to give the ears a shape by pinching in the straight edges and stitching in place

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5. Place the ears on top of one of the hat pieces, facing inwards.

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6. Place the other hat piece on top to form a sandwich. Secure all in place with pins

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7. Stitch around the edge. Turn the right way round.

8. I stitched a band of fabric along the bottom of the hat as it didn’t quite fit my son’s head and we wanted it to be bigger

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We found that the ears go a little lopsided like a dogs but this can be corrected with a little bit of starch or adding in some wadding when stitching the ears together.

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The last thing we needed to do to finish off the costume was to paint his face green.

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I painted his face green and then added on some lines to make him look a little older.

We was asked by Egmont Publishing to choose a Star Wars Character to dress up as on World Book day to celebrate the release of the new book The Cold. The book is due out in March and is the latest to be published in the series of Star Wars: Adventures in Wild Space books. Read about the first two that were released last year here

‘The Adventures in Wild Space takes place in the period betweenStar Wars: Revenge of the Sith and Star Wars: A New Hope. Star Wars fans can meet a whole host of new characters, including a new droid, CR-8R, and a new villain, Captain Korda. It follows the Graf family Mum, Dad, Daughter and Son whilst they tour wild space as galactic mappers.

It is a time of darkness. With the end of the Clone Wars and the destruction of the Jedi Order, the evil Emperor Palpatine rules the galaxy unopposed. After their parents were kidnapped by the ruthless Imperial Captain Korda, young explorers Lino and Milo Graf set out to find them’

The Cold is the fifth in the series of the exciting junior novels written by Cavan Scott. Siblings Milo and Lina have picked up the trail of their kidnapped parents – but an ambush in the depths of Wild Space leaves them stranded on a desolate planet. With an old enemy out for revenge can they survive THE COLD?

The series is ideal for any young Star Wars fan out there. My boys are aged 9 and 5, both have really enjoyed reading the books. They are full of adventure, action packed and fun to read.

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I find these Star Wars books are always good for those reluctant readers as they are so gripping and adult like but simple enough for children to understand and read. The illustrations are in black and white and simple but just right for the books.

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The books in the series are ideal for children from the age of 8. Although, my son is 5 and he enjoyed reading them, just occasionally asking for help on a few words and for explanations on what some of the words meant. The characters are fun and make the stories exciting. The books are quite short which helps keep the child’s attention and with few illustrations they are ideal for those readers that are moving away from stories that are highly illustrated. They help children make predictions about the future content without looking at the pictures to help them.

Egmont are offering one of my readers the chance to win a full set of Star Wars: Adventures in Wild Space books

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Three of the five from the series

The Cold http://amzn.to/2jUCPFv

The Dark http://amzn.to/2kjmKMW

The Steal http://amzn.to/2kjmKMW

The Nest http://amzn.to/2kjtnyK

The Snare http://amzn.to/2jUQewX

All book available to buy from Amazon on the links above

To be in with a chance enter via the rafflecopter below. Competition ends 19/03/2017

 a Rafflecopter giveaway

Looking for more Star Wars Fancy Dress inspiration for World Book Day Take a look at Princess Leia by We Made This, R2D2 by ET Speaks From Home, Hans Solo by A Strong Coffee and a Storm Trooper by Ickles Pickles.

 

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Star Wars Xmas Books Review Giveaway

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away….

Are you a big Star Wars fan?

Do I have something special for you! And just in time for Christmas too

IMG_20151126_114447 (1)_optWe was recently sent a selection of Star Wars books to share and giveaway to you.

Join Luke  Skywalker on his epic adventures in Star Wars Treasury: The Original Trilogy. It is hardback book based on the stories by George Lucas, A new Hope, The empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi. The book tells you the basic story line keeping in the fun and exciting parts, with over 100 full colour paintings by Brian Rood, that keeps you entertained and wanting to read more. Brian Rood is a professional illustrator who works in the entertainment, comic and commercial art fields. Not only does he create new art work for Star Wars, but also for Marvel comics, Paramount pictures and Hollywood stars. The illustrations in the book are gorgeous works of watercolour art that we found captivating and charming.  The book doesn’t have many words but has pictures on every page keeping it engaging for the younger readers.

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The Star Wars young readers books are ideal for younger children learning to read. They come in three levels, corresponding to the colour book band that they use in schools. These books are exciting and are set out with few words and lots of dramatic colourful illustrations. If your child is interested in Star Wars then these books can encourage reluctant readers to become independent readers. They are ideal action books for new readers.

Escape from Darth Vader is a young readers level 1, which is equal to a yellow book band. Level 1 are simple stories for new and developing readers. Based on the events from A new hope . Meet two different robots R2-D2 and C3P0 who attempt to escape from the mean and scary Darth Vader and his Troopers. Princess Leia is caught, but before It happens she gives something special to R2-D2, something that Darth Vader is after, the secret battle Plans!

Use the Force is a young readers level 2 book, which is equal to a blue book band. Level 2 books are engaging stories for readers growing in confidence and independence. Join Jedi Master Yoda as he teaches Luke how to use the force. The Force is a special energy field that can be used for good or evil. Luke trains hard but he needs to believe in himself before he can move on. Will he be able to use the Force to save his friends and become the greatest Jedi of all!

The Young Reader Star Wars books are challenging for new readers, with interesting action stories and beautiful illustrations they are perfect for any child to enjoy. As the levels go up there are more words to a page.

The Star Wars Starfighter Workshop book is part activity and part construction. That’s right you get to build your very own X-Wing and tie fighter to play with and display in your home. There is nothing more, that my boys like, than becoming creative and building items that they can play with. The activity book is full of puzzles and mazes, lots of exciting activities for the children to do. The construction part if the fun part of the book! Not only do you get to build an X-Wing but you also get to build a Tie Fighter too! There are 10 pieces of foam, each with pre-cut shape pieces that can be easily pushed out. The instructions are inside the activity book and are easy to follow. We got a little lost at some points as we got a little confused with what part was what, so we looked at the pictures on the instructions and they helped us. Slotting the pieces together can get a little fiddly, but a little perseverance saw us creating our very own space crafts to play with. The recommended age for this workshop is 7, which I totally agree as it does get fiddly and the instructions can get a little hard to follow especially when connecting the pieces together (although if younger and under adult supervision I think it would be fine)

Watch the video below for the full review of the Star Wars Starfighter Workshop

The boys played with the Starfighter for a long time and eventually they started to come apart and loose so we just reinforced them together with some super glue.

A great activity for adults and children to do together, with a fabulous outcome.

All of the book are available to buy from Amazon.

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 For your chance to win a Copy of the Star Wars Treasury and the Star Wars Starfighter Workshop , enter via Gleam below

 Star wars Xmas Books Giveaway
 T&C’s

Enter all of the entries on Gleam

Competition ends midnight 12th December

UK entries only please

Winner will be drawn via Gleam

Lucas Films have not sponsored this post

Details of the winner will be passed onto Egmont who will post out to directly from them

We was provided with copies of the books for this review and giveaway.

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Spending Quality Time With The Disney 365 Stories For Boys Book

With the recent family benefit cuts The Works are looking to promote ways in which parents can save themselves cash and yet still spend quality time with their children. Buying books is a much cheaper way of entertainment than buying the latest game for a console. Evidence suggests that reading books is actually better for young children’s development than watching the Television

The Works has interviewed professionals in the field, including children’s literacy expert, Dr Sandra Williams, and the National Literacy Trust, to establish the benefits of reading books.

Dr Sandra Williams said: “Reading a book, together with the tactile turning of the page is pleasurable and a good picture book has qualities that may not be found in electronic media.  What is important is the construction of the child and many good quality picture books invite active participation and involvement.  Significantly the authors/illustrators leave gaps for the readers to fill. There is a tension between text and picture which invites consideration.””

Reading books leaves room for the imagination and aides children with their imagination. My eldest boy loves to read books and is always recreating a story that he has read with his younger brother in a play, reading stories help him with his English and has widened his vocabulary. He has written a few stories himself and has amazed me with his imaginative words which he would not have if he didn’t read so many books.

My boys have their own book shelf full of a wide variety of books, fact and fiction. Having such a vast amount gives them a choice of stories to read at the snap of a little finger. Although my boys are aged between 10 and 1 years old, they all seem to enjoy the same type of books which saves me money as they can be passed down and shared between them. My middle son Joseph is 5 years old and is just beginning to enjoy reading books as he can understand and recognise the text in them.

Reading together with all my boys is something special, it’s the only time that they still together with no bickering and jumping around, I get to cuddle up close to them and we all enjoy the story together.

We was sent a copy of Disney 365 Stories for Boys to read as a family, the book is action packed with stories for every day of the year, each page is a calendar.

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We spent 10 minutes a day reading a story from the date that it was, we talked about the story and what happened in it, we discussed the characters and even though on each page there is only one little picture the boys wanted to sit and look at it.

20130226-062652.jpgThe book is beautifully set out with cute little pictures which help the stories come to life for the children.

The boys have really enjoyed reading this book together, they keep the book by their bedside and get the correct page ready for me to read it to them, even the toddler who is 19 months old comes running up to us to listen in on storytime. It is not often that i get all of the boys sitting quietly together for a length of time for something that they all enjoy and plus i get lots of snuggles as they all want to see the book which means they have to come closer 🙂

We experimented on reading a story from the book and watching a TV programme together but it just didn’t go as smoothly, the eldest sat still on the sofa but my middle boy, Joseph’s attention soon became a lack of, he was constantly moving about and fidgeting with whatever he could get hold off and even began to climb all over his older brother making the toddler thinking it was funny to do so and he joined in, it was mayhem! You see, my boys fight for my attention and with them just having to sit still and watch something on TV (they don’t all enjoy the same programmes either) they couldn’t do it as I was focusing on the what was on the box rather than them, so in order to get my attention the whole sitting comfortably and relaxing on the sofa becomes unbearable!

I love the quality time that is given to you when you read stories together and I know that my boys will pay attention to the story as it is something that they are interested in and to be honest it really doesn’t matter if it is fact or fiction as they will show an interest in any book.

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The book is also available for Girls and can be bought from The Works.

We was sent a copy of the book for the purpose of this post.

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Christmas stories for children with Egmont Review

With christmas fast approaching us parents will be thinking of what goodies we will be buying our little ones. When i buy presents for my boys i like to buy a couple of big ones and lots of little ones and most often than not their favourite presents would be the ones that they pull out of their stockings. If your children are anything like my boys and love to read books then i have the perfect addition to go into their stockings or rather Egmont have the answer.

The boys were sent three brand new christmas story books featuring a favourite of popular characters, Thomas The Tank Engine, Everythings Rosie and Mr Men. All three would attract any child’s eye as they are shiny, bright and sparkly. I really like the size of them as well as joseph has small hands so the are perfect size for him to handle. When we opened up the package Joseph immediately picked up the Thomas book as this is and has been his favourite character since he was one years old. He got very excited and couldnt wait to listen to the story.

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In the new Christmas special ‘Snowy Tracks’ The island of Sodor is covered in a thick blanket of snow and the engines have been told to be careful and not to go over any big hills. Gordon doesn’t listen, he’s sure that he’ll be strong enough to steam over every hill he comes to. But it isn’t long before Gordon finds out that snow is much more dangerous than it looks!
Joseph loved this story, he was shouting at the exciting parts especially the part of the story where the big heavy snowball bashed into Thomas but he knew that Thomas’s friends would soon come to help him.

The next book is Mr Men Meet Father Christmas. Little Miss Tiny secretly wishes she could visit Father Christmas but she doesn’t expect her wish to come true. But magical things really do happen at Christmas and crazy things too when you’re with the Mr. Men and the Little Miss! The story takes you on a christmas journey where Mr Daydream takes little Miss Tiny to the North Pole on the way they meet some and see some interesting characters and places Like celebrating sheep, yellow snow, sneezing elves and a very sooty Father Christmas.
This story is fabulous for Christmas and has a lovely magical feel to it, great to read as a bedtime story.

The last book is Rosie and Raggles Star in The Last Snowball.
This is my personal favourite of the three and i was slightly worried that because it had a picture of Rosie on the front of the book that Joseph wouldn’t want to listen to the story, but i should have known better, Joseph loved it just a much as any other book.
Winter is over and Big Beat wakes up from his winter sleep, he’s sad to find that he’s missed out on all the fun that snow can bring. Rosie and her friends do everything they can to do recreate winter fun, but sledging and snow angels don’t work without snow. The friends gather together and come up with a lovely idea.
This is a lovely story about friendship and making and recording memories. The story really a has a feel good factor and makes you smile.

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All three of these books I would definitely recommend and priced at £2.99 each they are the ideal gift for a special little someone. To find out more about these books take a look at Egmont website

Your child can also star in their very own story book with Egmont. Create your child as a character and you can even pick a friend to join them. These special unique personalised gifts start at £7.99. Take a look at www.egmont.co.uk/personalisedbooks for more information.

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197/366 library visit

Oliver and I had a visit to our local library today. I don’t normally get him out of the buggy but today I noticed something new in amongst the book shelves, there was a new lovely alphabet rug on the floor right in front of the children’s section and on the rug was a lovely small wooden table with a few toys on it. As I let Oliver loose he ran straight over to the table, grinning and giggling and started to play with they toys. He spun the letter blocks around on the alphabet table, he picked up the phone and he pushed along the cars. Once I managed to pry him away from the toys we chose a story book, one suitable for Oliver, a hard back cardboard one about a teddy bear going on a picnic. It was hard to get him back into the buggy and he would only sit still if I gave Jim the book to hold.

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