We are huge fans of Hiccup and Toothless and reviewing How To Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World on DVD just after SATs week, was a great way for the twins to chill out and relax.

These adorable characters first came into our lives about ten years ago and captured our hearts with their endearing characters. The films are quick paced and include all of the ingredients that a good family film should have, like story line, threats, survival and triumph.

Dean DeBlois has excelled once again with the final quest of the series which was available on digital May 27 and today is released on 4K Ultra HD, Blu-Ray™, DVD, and On Demand from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment.

The film went straight to 1st place on Rotten Tomatoes and has been hailed as “the perfect conclusion to one of the best animated trilogies of all time” (Scott Menzel, We Live Entertainment). Take a look at the trailer for an idea of what to expect.

A quick summary without giving anything away – The Vikings and the dragons of Berk face their darkest threat yet, the evil Grimmel and Toothless finds a soulmate, Light Fury. The friendship between Hiccup and Toothless is tested like never before.

I asked the girls to give me a personalised review, Bessie said,

I thought the film was excellent and it broke my heart at the end. I was glued to the screen the whole way through and I would recommend this DVD to all of my friends.

and Alice said,

A really good film and I really enjoyed it the whole way through. I would definitely watch this film again and again and would class it as one of my favourites.

WIN a copy of the DVD

I have one copy of the DVD to give away and to win just complete the Rafflecopter below. One lucky winner will be chosen randomly from the entries on the 17th June. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

It’s been a long time since the twins played with a styling head; they had one about five years ago and after an initial flurry of interest, the moment passed and the styling head was stuck on a shelf until I gave it away to Sophie my granddaughter. So, it was with great interest I accepted BritMums request to review the I’M A STYLIST styling head. How would it go down with my two discerning tweens?

All mums of tweens will nod their heads agreeing with me when I say that 10 going on 11 is a tricky age when it comes to dolls. The twins are in an in-between-stage where they don’t want to appear childish in front of their peers but there are some things (like favourite teddies – ssshhh) they still don’t want to let go of. Lucy, the I’M A STYLIST styling head, fits in perfectly as she is beautiful and comes with all the latest fashion accessories making her very trendy.

I have become very aware this past school year of their search for independence and their claim for taking control over their personal identity. In the past, I’ve always bought their clothes and shoes but recently they politely refuse to accept my choices and we go on shopping trips together where they can both freely choose (to a certain extent) their ‘look’.

Their group of friends is extremely important to them and I hear them chatting with them on their phones all the time about hair, makeup, fashion and Arianna Grande – who has taken over the bedroom walls. Frequently, in the mornings – just as I’m about to leave the house – I get asked to do an Arianna ponytail.

When they get ready to go out, makeup and hair is an important part of their ‘getting ready’ routine. It’s been fun watching them learn to apply the various products and learn how to use them – there were no YouTube tutorials in my day! I have noticed, however, that they aren’t very adventurous when it comes to hair styles. I think they lack practice and this is where I’M A STYLIST Lucy, steps into our lives.

Choker necklace – ‘model’s own’

The 33cm tall beauty arrived with earrings, hair accessories, magnetic eyelashes and self-adhesive gemstones and as we unboxed her, the girls’ eyes were shining with excitement; they couldn’t wait to get their hands on her.

Can you imagine their delight when they discovered a second wig in the box? A lovely rich red colour. The styling heads have a ‘CUT HAIR DON’T CARE’ feature and a wide range of wigs to choose from including blue and lilac. They are so easy to change as well; each wig has an elastic that runs around the edge which fits into a notch around the head. It can then be pulled and tied in place. It holds securely and can stand all the brushing and styling little divas wish. Just don’t let them loose with hair spray or gel!

I’M A STYLIST styling head comes with

  • Magnetic eyelashes that are easy to apply and come in a special keepsake box.
  • Interchangeable excellent quality wigs available in different colours. New wigs are on the expensive side at £39 though.
  • Earrings
  • Removable top.
  • Suction cups on the bottom of the styling head for extra stability when styling.
  • Reusable packaging which can be used to store the styling head neatly.

The I’M A GIRLY brand is new to me but I’m pleased to note the brand promotes inclusivity and diversity and is aimed at both girls and boys. They also produce an I’m A GIRLY fashion doll which comes in natural proportions, varying skin tones and hair colours and different of styles. The I’M A GIRLY products are designed by girls and boys aged 9 to 13 on its KIDS4KIDS panel. I’M A STYLIST styling head is available in Harrods and Hamleys RRP £75.

Competition – Your child could be part of the KIDS4KIDS panel!?

Do you have a child aged 9 to 12 who’s creative and interested in design and fashion? They can win a place on the KIDS4KIDS design team designing clothes and accessories for the product range. The winners will have the opportunity to meet with the I’M A GIRLY team in London and design clothes for the Fall Winter collection. It will be an afternoon full of drawing, playing with fabrics and brainstorming outfits!

Let your little designer show their creativity by entering. Here’s how!

  • Download this sheet with an illustration of the I’M A GIRLY doll: IAG _ Drawing Template
  • Your designer can draw on it, create a collage from images, fabrics and colours etc. to create their very own and individual outfit
  • Once their creation is finished, take a picture of it and send it to info@imagirly.com
  • Competition ends 21 May 2019
  • The KIDS4KIDS design team will choose the best designs and winners will be announced 24 May 2019
  • The winners are invited to take part in the design session in London on 15 June 2019 2-5pm*

*travel not included

The project is sponsored by I’M A GIRLY.

Read the Terms & Conditions

DISCLAIMER: This post is part of a paid project with I’M A GIRLY and BritMums, promoting the I’M A STYLIST styling heads, that just landed in Harrods and Hamleys. They are hip, cheeky, trendy and a bridge between childhood and teenage years. See the styling heads, the fashion dolls and accessories at www.imagirly.com/uk/

It’s that odd time of year where the weather hasn’t yet settled, sometimes it’s as cold as the Arctic and you can’t bear to be out of doors for longer than a few minutes and then on other days, the sun shines and there’s a definite ‘Spring is in the air’ feel.

They are the days I like most and I am always tempted to start packing away thick winter coats, jumpers, hats and scarves but, I know better. Having been around the block a few times now, I’m only too aware of how quickly the temperature can change.

However, it does seem a bit silly to be venturing outside in April still tucked up in a padded winter coat, complete with fur trim. Fortunately, Reima – the stylish Finnish experts on kids outdoor clothing are ahead of the game. And, understanding our dilemma, their design team came up with the perfect solution. Multifunctional jackets…

Reima kindly invited the twins to choose a jacket each and put it to the test. The choice was between the 3 in 1 Reimatec waterproof jacket Sydvest which is a classic coat, perfect for all weathers, with a detachable vest jacket (It comes in the most gorgeous yellow). The Fleet 2 in 1 down jacket – lightweight, windproof and warm or the Float design, a 2 in 1 jacket, for warmer yet unpredictable weather, with removable arms making a very nice warm gilet (perfect for evening netball training).

There was a lot of umming and erring as all three models are very stylish, come in lovely bright colours and all cope with varied weather patterns. However, the Float model was decided upon, Alice went for a coral pink and Bessie choose the light blue.

Now we had to road test them and what could be better than a trip down to Thanet over the Easter break when the weather hit a maximum 6°C? The British weather was true to form; we had freezing cold days (and nights), seas whipped up into a frenzy by bitterly cold winds and rain – lots of rain.

Never mind, the girls stayed as warm as toast in their new jackets and I must admit, it was lovely to see them so colourful on such dreary cold days. They were immediately identified and added a pop of colour to the grey landscape.

I know they are going to come in very handy this term at school when one minute it’s sunny and the next it’s raining hard. They will also enjoy them at netball training, they’ve been practising in the garden over Easter with the netball hoop we bought them.

I think they’ll also be fantastic for our trip to Spain in June as they pack away tightly in a case – they roll up really small. We’ve been to Murcia in the past and had really cold weather this time of year. IN fact, I’m sure we’ll be seeing a hell of a lot of these jackets, keep an eye on our Instagram feed.

Disclosure: We were sent the jackets for the purpose of this post. All opinions are our own.

Who can resist the charm of Johnny English aka Rowan Atkinson? I can’t that’s for sure. He has me in stitches every single time. In fact, all of Rowan Atkinson’s characters do as he plays them so well. He is an expert in combining meticulous attention to detail with slapstick comedy. How can you not laugh?

The latest film – Johnny English Strikes Again – does not in any way fail to deliver the wholesome family entertainment we are used to and the twins will back this up for me as we recently sat down to watch the film on DVD for the purpose of this review.

It’s hilarious and it has a brilliant story line too. It is action packed and your belly will ache from laughing so it really does have the ‘fell-good film’ vibe.

Johnny is reluctantly asked once again to go undercover when a cyber attack leaves all of the current spies in the field exposed. His mission is to find the mastermind hacker and, considering his lack of skills and knowledge in technology, this could be his most difficult (and more likely last) challenge to date.

Bough, his loveable sidekick (played by Ben Miller) also gives a powerful performance and the array of gadgets used by the undercover agent are fabulous.

Rowan Atkinson is a known car enthusiast and had a hand in choosing the cars that were to feature in the film – you won’t be disappointed, James Bond, eat your heart out.

The twins have fallen in love with the adorable spy and would happily watch the DVD over and over again…oh look, it’s raining, the perfect excuse for a half term chill out film, wouldn’t you say?

The DVD is out today (18th February 2019) and has 30 minutes of exclusive bonus features including a detailed look at the film locations and the sets as well as Johnny’s collection of gadgets and cars. There is a section that explores the cast and a deep dive into the legacy of  everyone’s favorite hapless spy!

Johnny English Strikes Again is available now on Digital, Blu-ray, DVD and On Demand from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment.

Disclosure: We received a copy of the DVD for the purpose of this post.

Roast dinner

I’d be lying to you if I said husband had put his barbecue away – of course he hasn’t; we’ll be barbecuing in the middle of winter, just you wait and see. However, I can declare Sunday Roast time of year is now in full swing in our house and it’s the one meal I look forward to every week.

Sunday is always that day in our house where we spend time together aware that as of the following morning, it’s going to be a long, mad rush to get through the week until Friday when we can all be together again. I start thinking about our Sunday roast midweek as that’s when I tend to do my online shop for the week. I like to alternate between beef, chicken, pork and gammon but my favourite roast of all is lamb, especially Welsh lamb.

Luckily for me, I have an enormous rosemary bush in the garden which works perfectly with lamb and there’s something very ‘Good Life’ about nipping into the garden to snip some fresh sprigs from the bush.

Of course, no roast can be called a roast in my book unless it is accompanied by all the trimmings and that includes roast potatoes and parsnips and then a couple of veg like carrots, beans, cauliflower of cabbage depending on what’s in the fridge.

Yorkshire puddings are a must and oodles of gravy poured over the meal too; I have to make a lot of gravy for my lot!

It’s really pointless me writing recipes to use for leftovers as there is very rarely anything left to use. The family devour the whole lot and if there are leftovers they normally want another roast dinner during the week to use them up. That’s when I might need to boost the meal with some sausages.

If we are in the town we will go into the local butcher and stock up on some of his finest products but one of husband’s favourite shopping experiences is looking at online meat suppliers. I kid you not. He can spend hours looking and deciding which hamper to go for. Graig Farm has been a recent find of his and he can spend hours trawling through the site, jotting down notes and making comparisons.

Of course, the excitement doesn’t end there. The minute that email lands in his inbox and he has a delivery date, he’s on the lookout. Sticking post-its up with instructions in case we are at work when they call by. Even going to ask our next-door neighbours if they will let the delivery man leave the box inside the front door for him.

Husband has been known to take photos of his purchase and post them on Facebook, proud of his choice and encouraging his friends to follow suit. We then have a lengthy discussion about what is to be eaten and what is to be frozen. I know, all the fun in our house but when it comes to sitting down for our Sunday roast, I can honestly say it was worth it.

Seeing as our barbecue won’t come back into regular use again until April at the earliest, I am looking forward to months of Sunday roasts again.

How about you? Do you enjoy a particular family meal together or is it just me?