Summer Activities for kids and families

Okay, so we are on week 3 of the summer holidays, hands up if you have already heard ‘I’m bored!’ in that whining sound that grates every parent’s nerves.

Kids of today eh? There’s just no pleasing them. They are tired and fed up when it’s school time and they are bored at home with all the free time they could wish for! Mind you, if I look back to when I was a child, I said the same. My guess is some things will never change and this is one of them.

Sun-Pat Fuelling Families downloadable guide

SunPat fuelling families guide

Click to download a guide with 42 activities to keep busy this summer.

sun-pat football

I have come to the conclusion that with just a little thought and minimal planning you can actually keep them occupied and know that they’ll have loads of fun too. Sun-Pat have known this for a long time too and decided to come to all parent’s rescue this summer. They have put together an excellent sports kit held in a strong and handy holdall containing a football (which dad says is a very good one), a cricket set and a skipping rope.

With just these few items (which Sun-Pat sent us to review), we had an entire afternoon of fun and guess who was best at the skipping challenge? #JustSayin

Sun-Pat are convinced that all kids need to get outdoors is a little inspiration and some good company and on that note, they are giving away 420 special sports kits this summer and you can easily get one too.

In the photos, you can see us playing with our kit at the caravan but we shall be taking it to the beach and to parks, it’s such a handy bag with a carrying handle too. With the equipment included, you don’t have to stick to the traditional games but you can create your own like obstacle courses, or bouncing the ball as many times as you can, dribbling the ball around obstacles laid out and skipping forwards, backwards all sorts!

Summer Activities for kids and families

Research discovered that 85% of kids wish they spent more time outside over the summer so now they have no excuse. A bag full of goodies and the local park (plus a few peanut butter sandwiches for a half time snack) is all you need for an afternoon of fun.

Get your Sun-Pat summer sports kit

It’s very simple, just head over to the Sun-Pat Fuelling Families giveaway and click enter, with 10 being given away every day your chances of winning are high or, visit Sun-Pat on Facebook to enter.

Sun-Pat Peanut Butter is a perfect natural source of protein and fibre and helps maintain energy levels, and the guide also includes recipes for simple and delicious snacks to fuel your whole family this summer.

Disclaimer: Post in collaboration with Sun-Pat Peanut Butter

birds eye cheese pasta

Birds Eye have just bought out a really cool game on Facebook where you drag and drop ingredients from a rolling selection into a steam bag then once you have 6 ingredients in your bag, you click Steam and then are invited to name your dish.

Once completed, and you can do this very day, an email arrives with a 50p coupon to print off towards buying some of the fabulous Birds Eye Steamfresh range and trust me there are some delicious products to choose from.

I went to my local supermarket yesterday and picked up –

  • Creamy Cheese Penne Pasta
  • Mediterranean Vegetable Penne Pasta
  • Mediterranean Vegetable Rice
  • Egg Fried rice with peas

These are all now in the freezer and will come in so handy on those days I’m feeling under the weather or too tired to cook from scratch. I know the girls will eat all of those quite happily and they make very nutritious meals.

Samsung microwave

Birds Eye have very kindly given me a Samsung MS23F301EAK SOLO Microwave Oven for one lucky Mari’s World reader, in order to win this competition visit Birds Eye on Facebook (<<– Important that you click that link there!) and make up a recipe, then come back and tell me in a comment below what you made, simples!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wishing you the very best of luck and in case you need some inspiration here are some microwave recipes to inspire you.

bolognese sauce microwave recipe

sage multi cooker

I have been trying out my Sage Multi cooker now for about a month and I LOVE it. I already loved my slow cooker and you can find tons of recipes on this blog including some of our favourites here

Beef slow cooker recipes

Hungarian Goulash

Beef in Guinness

Cowboy Stew

Lamb shank slow cooker recipes

Lamb shanks with chorizo and garlic

Lamb shanks with red wine and rosemary 

Chicken slow cooker recipe

Hot chilli, tomato and basil flavoured roast chicken

Fish slow cooker recipes

Italian fish stew

Tomato fish curry

Smoked fish chowder

But this multi cooker really takes the biscuit. It has different settings which allow you to do so much more.

SAGE multi cooker

Any seasoned slow cooker user will know that for an even better taste it pays to brown your meat, to cook your onions and to prepare certain parts in a frying pan before placing in the slow cooker for cooking. Well the Sage Multi cooker can do that for you!

It has an incredibly genius button called sautè/sear …  I have no frying pans to wash up now as I sautè my onions, celery, garlic, add my meat and brown that get everything ready and THEN click on to slow cook low or high depending on the time I have and the recipe I’m using.


Then there’s a button for risotto, I ADORE risotto, husband doesn’t, so I’m waiting for him to go out so I can start cooking some delicious risotto recipes for you, one coming next week and I can’t wait to see if it works as well as the traditional watch and stir method I learnt in Italy and have used until now.

Then there’s a steam button, ever so handy for cooking vegetables, I tried with broccoli and beans and they cooked beautifully, just a nice bite to them and of course you retain all the nutrients by steaming so #winwin on the 5 a day.

I have cooked a ragù sauce for pasta using the slow cooking settings and it is superb. Ask any Italian how to cook a ragù sauce and they will tell you it needs to cook slowly for a long time, the Sage Multi cooker does that for you and in the 5 hours cooking all the different tastes are drawn out and mingled into a mind blowing taste bud ecstacy.

Convinced yet?

This baby is worth around £100 and it does not deserve to sit in a cupboard forgotten, you can use it daily and it is very economical to run.

Want to win one?

Follow the instructions on the Rafflecopter below and the very best of luck, it’s a dream

a Rafflecopter giveaway

mini cruise maxWhen we have decided where we’re going to go on holiday be it a 3 week stay or a long weekend one of the first preparations we do, and one of the most exciting is look into what there is to see, eat and do locally. That way when we get there we already have lots of ideas to make the most of our stay and come home with the satisfaction that not one moment was wasted because we didn’t know what to do.

Because we are all so different in taste and how we like to spend our free time P&O have launched a site called Mini Cruise Max. It allows everyone to create their own travel guide before they’ve even left the house.

It’s really cool as you start by clicking on the place you’d like to visit, Amsterdam for example and then you tick the boxes that appeal to you, Restaurants, bars and clubs, cultural or simply tick the Surprise me box.

It then asks you what kind of break your looking for, relaxing, vintage, celebratory or busy and then once that’s decided you can click and find your personal travel guide full of tips from top guide books and websites.

There are hundreds of great things for people to do on the site, which have already been recommended by people with similar interests.

P&O are launching weekly competitions for 5 weeks to win a mini cruise to five different European cities through this site. You can find the first competition on their P&O Facebook page the first winner will be announced on Friday.

Here’s a short video which explains it in more detail

Disclosure: This is a partnered post

higgidy pie party


We LOVE pies in our house, one of our preferred dinners for sure and with British Pie Week approaching fast (3 – 9 March) we shall be celebrating in proper pie fashion but you can win a Higgidy pie party and celebrate one of Britain’s top meals with your friends and family.

The West Sussex pie makers Higgidy are hosting a Pie Party and all you need to do to be in with a chance of winning your own pie party is leave a comment below telling me

Which is your favourite pie filling?

Competition closes Monday 24th February midnight and the winner will be picked at random using on Tuesday 25th February

Each party pack contains everything you need to make your home pie-themed for the event including party hats, balloons, place cards, and of course, enough meat and vegetarian pies for 12 to enjoy for dinner (or lunch if you’d prefer).

Higgidy believe there is nothing better than homemade, which is why they freshly bake their pies by hand every day, and fill them with delicious ingredients just like you would use in your kitchen at home.

If you like making your own pies you might want to take a look at the Higgidy recipe book which is full of delicious ideas or try one of mine

Beef and Stilton

Peppered Steak pie

Turkey and ham pie

Terms and Conditions

By taking part in this competition all participants will be deemed to have accepted and be bound by these terms and conditions:

  • This prize draw is only open to residents of the UK.
  • No responsibility is taken for entries that are lost, delayed, misdirected or incomplete or cannot be delivered or entered for any technical or other reason. Proof of delivery of the entry is not proof of receipt.
  • Each winner will receive a pack containing party accessories for 12 and 12 pies. Higgidy accepts no responsibility for any costs associated with the prize and not specifically included in the prize.
  • The prize pies will be a mix of meat and vegetarian products.
  • The winners will be notified by email, and sent their prize from Higgidy via courier.
  • All prizes will be delivered on Thursday 6 March.
  • Prizes will be delivered to the address given on prize draw entry, unless an alternative is agreed in writing with Higgidy.
  • The prize is non-exchangeable, non-transferable, and is not redeemable for cash or other prizes.
  • Higgidy retains the right to substitute the prize, or any of its contents, with another prize of similar value in the event the original prize offered is not available.
  • The winners names may be promoted on Higgidy’s website or social media websites.
  • No purchase necessary.
  • Higgidy accepts no responsibility for any damage, loss, liabilities, injury or disappointment incurred or suffered by you as a result of entering the prize draw or accepting the prize. Higgidy further disclaims liability for any injury or damage to your or any other person’s computer relating to or resulting from participation in or downloading any materials in connection with the prize draw.
  • Higgidy reserves the right at any time and from time to time to modify or discontinue, temporarily or permanently, this prize draw with or without prior notice due to reasons outside its control (including, without limitation, in the case of anticipated, suspected or actual fraud). The decision of Higgidy in all matters under its control is final and binding and no correspondence will be entered into.