Young Driver Experience – A day to Remember

Could you imagine learning to drive before the age of 17?

At Young Driver, a center that gives children from the age of 10 an opportunity to get behind the wheel and experience driving with a qualified instructor. Children can learn to drive at one of the 60 UK centers where they are taught in a specially designed training area. The training area includes; sharp bends, mini round-about, parking spaces, traffic lights, and junctions.

Young Driver follow the Driving Standards Agency curriculum, which means that what 10 – 17s learn at YOUNG DRIVER is exactly the same as they will learn on the road at 17. The children are given a Drive Diary to record their progress and this is one of the most important parts of the programme – moving forward is the aim!

Their personalised Drive Diary charts individual progress and current level of driving and is completed by the instructor after each driving session. The instructor talks them through it and explains where they could do with some more help or whether they can progress to the next step. The Drive Diary can be given over to their driving instructor when they begin their official lessons at the age of 17 and the instructor will then know what their experience level is.

 

My son, who is 14 years old, was lucky enough to be invited along to the Bluewater Center to experience for himself what it is like to drive a car. The center itself, is situated within the blue car park at Bluewater shopping center. There is a section of car park outside that is specifically designed for a  beginners’ zone, that has a full road system with traffic signs, road markings, junctions and parking zones. In this way it encourages responsible driving.

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As soon as we had arrived, he was called up by his instructor and taken along to the car that he would be driving. Before he could turn the key he underwent a safety check and was taught how to use the mirrors, signal and when to manoeuvre. He had full control over the steering wheel and pedals, however the instructor had pedals that would over power his if an accident were to happen. He started off slowly, to get used to the feel of the steering and clutch. Not long on the road and he was soon snaking in-between cones and maneuvering the car into a figure of eight in the parking lot. Whilst, he was driving he was continuously given advise and constructive criticism from the instructor. He spent 60 minutes out on the road, building up his confidence and learning some important skills of control and responsibility. He now knows how to drive safely and properly, putting him leaps and bounds ahead of other 17 year olds.

His instructor was fantastic, professional and made him feel safe at all times.

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Since his experience, he has become more road aware and is definitely more confident and prepared for when he can hit the road.

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We made a video of his experience

My son certainly left with a big smile on his face and is now eager to get behind the wheel.

I would highly recommend the experience for any young child who wants to get ahead of their peers and become a much safer driver. A very valuable and worthwhile experience.

30 minute lesson – 10-17yrs – £34.95

60 minute lesson – 10-17yrs – £64.95

To find out more about the experience or to make a booking, head on over to their website www.youngdriver.com

We was given this experience for the purpose of this review.

Thank you for helping me grow plaque

It is the little ones last few days with his childminder before he starts full-time in school. He has been with her for 3 years and I wanted to give her a special gift that she would be able to remember him by. She has done so much for him and he really cares fo her.

I had made Thank you for helping me grow cards for the teachers at the end of the summer term and thought that it would be a great idea to try to do the same thing but in plaster.

Thank you for helping me grow is a tree with the children’s finger prints on the branches as leaves.

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Items you will need:

Resin Plaster 1kg – bought from HobbyCraft £7.99

Silicone mould – I used a 9″ cake mould

Water – to  mix in with the resin powder

Paint – brown, green and red

Small paint brush

Modelling tools

Fine line blank ink pen

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Instructions:

  • Mix the plaster resin with 1 part water to 3 parts plaster. Pour the water into a clean bowl and sprinkle on the resin powder, leave for a minute and then mix together. Pour slowly into the mould.
  • Leave aside to set. Just as the mould becomes hard, putty like, using a moulding tool inscribe the shape of the tree

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  • Now to add the thumb prints onto the branches, push down with some pressure in order to leave an imprint
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leaving his print

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  • Leave to set completely

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  • Once dry, remove from the mould. Using a thin paint brush paint in the lines of the tree and then finger print in the leaves

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Once set I wrote on his name and the date of the last day he would spend in the company of his childminder ( I say childminder but I would like to think of her as an extended part of pur family)

The finger prints and name gives more of a personal touch and hopefully she will see the love that has gone into the gift. She will be in our hearts forever and hopefully as we will be in hers.

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A gift that can be kept forever

Personalised Chocolate Valentine Messages

If you want to say something, say it with chocolate

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These Chocolate Valentine messages are the perfect gift to give to your love one on that special day, they are quick and easy and will not break the bank. You can add your own personal touch to the gift, maybe you have a pet name for your partner or maybe you want to ask them that special question (you know the one that every girl dreams of) whatever you want to say you can do it with these little messages.

All you will need is:

  • A bar of your preferred chocolate
  • Grease proof paper
  • Cocktail sticks or for those bigger messages some skewers
  • A piping bag
  • Edible glitter or any cake decoration

First melt the chocolate, I used my chocolate fondue machine but a glass bowl over a hot pan off water will do just as well

While your waiting for your chocolate to melt place a piece of grease proof paper out on the side and place some sticks out sparingly

Empty your melted chocolate into the piping bag (remember to choose a nozzle with a small hole)

Pipe any word that you want onto the paper making sure that the chocolate lands on top of the stick, use fancy joined up writing

Decorate with edible glitter or any cake decoration that you prefer

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Leave to dry

Once set carefully peel the words away, I found that the thicker the words the easier to peel away and the more chance of the words staying together

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They can now be placed into plastic bags and given to your loved one or used as cake toppers

This message isn’t for a loved one but for a very special team of bloggers

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If you make some let me know how you got on and what word you will be writing on February 14th

DIY Mothers Day Gift

I love to make my own gifts for my mum and Mother’s Day is the perfect time to do so!

Ever since I was a little girl I can always remember making my own cards and gifts which was probably made out of scrap pieces of paper but whatever they were my mummy loved them! She always found a special place to exhibit my creations, on the fire surround or on the kitchen side where everyone would see them.

My mum loves to receive home made cards or gifts as she says they have that special touch and are more thoughtful!

I think Jak takes after me as he is always making me things, last year I received a purse made out of paper and a card in the shape of a mug with a T-Bag in it. This year he tells me that he is going to make me a cake and I can’t wait as he is turning out to be quite a little sous chef and I am sure it will be very tasty.

I posted out earlier in the week an DIY hanging wooden heart decoration that I have made for my mum, well today I added to her gifts and made another hanging creation.

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I bought the wooden weaved heart from Morrisons for £2 and the yellow foam flowers are from Hobbycraft (can’t remember how much, probably £3).
The flowers come with wire attached to them so it easy to twine them around things to attach them.

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A really simple DIY gift, cheap but I think really effective.

I just hope mummy likes it 🙂