Tag Archives: crafts

Wilderness Festival 2012 – Review

21 Aug

Way up in the blue skies surrounding Cornbury Park in Oxfordshire, the sun shone brightly, projecting it’s warm rays of loveliness on this beautiful space that was now home to the Wilderness Festival for the next three days.

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I was lucky enough to have experienced the Wilderness Festival back in 2011 for what was then its first year. I went with a friend and my two eldest children and camped for the weekend. It was a great experience and with this gut felling it would return this year bigger and better, I just had to be a part of it.

This time however I decided to go it alone, well not alone exactly but with a friend just minus the children. Luckily I was in a position to do so as the children stayed with there father. This really was a great opportunity to let my hair down and have some serious fun.

Again camping was on the agenda and having finally set up the tent within the large camping area we decided to go & check the place out! My first impressions were of it’s size and how much larger the festival was in comparison with last year. As great as the festival was during its first year, I had felt that it was quite limited for the kids! This year things couldn’t have been any more different! There was a vast amount on offer from crafting activity, storytelling, hola-hooping, bubble shows and much more besides. With this I was tempted to make the couple of hours drive back to south london in-order to grab the kids. Of course I didn’t, mainly because there was more than enough on offer to keep me amused as well as the fact I was ever so slightly enjoying the “Me Time”

What’s great about this festival is how it’s not just your average music festival. This is a festival designed to attract varying interests therefore attracting a more diverse audience that consists of young party goers to middle aged old school ravers. With the Wilderness festival being so family friendly you can also expect to see lots of little tots running around in fancy dress, tutus and a pair of fairy wings. This is a festival like no other, offering a relaxed atmosphere while also keeping your mind and body stimulated. Whether you fancy joining in with one of the many intellectual debates and talks, indulging your inner senses while taking a relaxing soak in a wooden hot tub by the stunning lake, or an hours session at the roller disco, you’ll find it here at the Wilderness Festival.

Crafts: Although I myself didn’t engage a great deal in the various craft activities on offer it was easy to see just how much choice there was.The jewellery making in particular looked really interesting as I witnessed some of my fellow festival goers create some pretty impressive pieces.

Music: I love how the Wilderness Festival doesn’t focus itself solely on music alone therefore making it something of its niche ( after all, how can it with so much else on offer)? However, this doesn’t mean we were left wondering around in deadly silence. The Wilderness festival hosts a large live stage that’s graced by many different performers day and night. Some of the music on offer is by new & emerging bands such as the Stornoway a British indie folk band from the local Oxfordshire area who formed in 2006. Other acts included Rodrigo Y Gabriela, London Folk Guild, Spiritualized and many more!

The main stage isn’t the only place that you’ll find people up and dancing. I myself spent little time at the stage as I was far to busy taking advantage of all the other wonderful goings on around the festival site! Nonetheless, various types of Music from funky house, live bandstands & vintage harmonies could be heard playing around the different areas of the wilderness. Both day and night it’s easy to find something that suits your particular taste in music leaving you little choice than to get up on your feet and doing your thing Wilderness style!

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Food: The Wilderness is a festival like no other when it comes to the standard of food on offer. Book yourself a table at one of the banquets and eat food prepared by some of the top chefs around or opt for one of the many food trailers preparing every type of munch imaginable.The standard here is high, I can say with confidence no festival goer will go hungry! The only problem your left with is making the decision of what your going to have!

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Night Parties: Having no children with me meant I could dress myself in some funky festival get up, tie my hair with flowers and sport a spectacular mask once the sun went down. This years midnight masquerade Masked Ball hosted by the Old Vic Tunnels was a party not to be missed nor forgotten! The atmosphere was electrifying as large groups of festival goers were lead by a bongo drum procession into the Wychwood forest for a moonlit extravaganza. Sunday was just as incredible what with the fabulous Secret garden party that saw me dancing into the wee hours and left me looking like a sack full of crap for the entire week thereafter.

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Vintage: This is actually a festival in its own right. This year they were unable to operate alone and therefore joined forces with the Wilderness making it just that bit more spectacular than it already was. The area housed some funky vintage stalls and even a place to get a decade specific makeover. Here you could chill-out at the Future Cinema (open air cinema combined with live theatre) or indulge yourself in a bit of roller skating to some old school tunes at the open air roller disco. By night vintage was the place to find some of the most devise dressers with many taking us way back to the dance floor of the forties ballrooms. I’m actually really pleased that Vintage joined forces with the Wilderness Festival and have been left wondering if this is set to become a normality. I really loved the vintage area and therefore hope it will be. If not than its just another festival I’ll be adding to my must attend list for 2013.

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Sanctuary: I spent a great deal of time indulging my senses and refreshing my mind at the Sanctuary. There were many free sessions of meditation and yoga plus a vast range of treatments on offer which include massage, reflexology, acupuncture, holistic healing and more. My friend and I also decided to meet with the fortune teller who in all honest was a total joker! This guy wasn’t in tune with himself let alone ours. But we didn’t let him put us off and I later met with a sensational healer.

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Rememberable moments: Yes, it’s true, This years Wilderness did host a secret swim that saw festival goers of all ages lose their vintage rags before plunging into the beautiful clear waters of the Cornbury lakes. A massive gathering of skinny dippers who were happy to let it all hang out in an attempt to help set the World record which was for the highest number of skinny dippers swimming in the one place. Did I lose my swimsuit? Hell no, but well done for those who did.

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Camping: Cornbury park offers festival attendees plenty of space to set up camp with dedicated family camping areas and even the option to camp in luxury when opting for a weekends Boutique Camping.

Facilities:

Great Parking with an extensive amount of places.

There are plenty of toilets in and around the festival therefore avoiding huge queues of people dying to pee. Toilets are actually rather well kept, with toilet attendees making sure they are clean and well stocked with loo paper both day and night.

Camping facilities (toilets and showers) are some of the best maintained I’ve seen for a festival. You will also find a good number of water taps for filling bottles, washing pans etc… all over the campsite.

Boutique Babysitting is also on offer. Check the website for more information

Whats really lovely about the this particular festival is that of its friendly atmosphere. Both years I’ve attended this festival I’ve never witness a single bit of trouble (when you live in london this is incrediable rare especially when alcohol is involved)! Festival Revealers are free spirited and high on fresh air & happiness, an infectious state of being!

It’s my opinion, without a shadow of a doubt, that the success of this years Wilderness Festival has ensured it’s place on the festival top list. I can quite honestly say with great confidence that this is one of the best festival I’ve ever attended and I just can’t wait to experience it all over again in 2013.

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Early bird tickets for The Wilderness Festival 2013 are already on sale… Find out more by clicking HERE

Links
Wilderness Festival Website
Wilderness Festival Facebook
Wilderness Festival Twitter

Disclaimer: This is a review post! I was not paid to write this but did receive a press and guest pass in-order to write and then share a review. All words are honest and that of my own.

Review – Toucan Box

30 Jul

Looking for ways to entertain the kids this summer?

I was recently sent a box full of crafts from Toucan Box these have kept us more than busy this past week.

Toucan box offer a subscription based service, try for one month at £19.99 cancel anytime, opt for a 6 month subscription for £18.95 or the annual subscription for just £16.95 a month all options offer free P&P.

Each month your sent a box full of crafts all designed around the one theme. The box is aimed at pre-schoolers but I found my 9 year old daughter has enjoyed helping her little brother with each activity.

We choose the Safari box as Harley is a big lover of giraffes and Lions. The box was packed full of educational craft projects as well as a beautiful story book and some great cards to play animal snap or the memory game.

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Heres the craft projects included in this Safari Box.

Make some pipe cleaner monkeys, that can be attached together.

Make some funky safari animal characters.

Craft some creepy creatures from snakeskin cards

Construct wild animals including giraffes, zebras, a leopard and her cubs, and more!

Make a safari scene

Make lion pom pom

Included is a fab story book “Squeak the Lion” and some animal playing cards too.

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There really is plenty to keep little ones entertained within this one box. As well as the planed activities you get all the materials to make them plus a really bright visual instruction booklet. Each activity explains why it helps your child’s progress whether it’s their fine motor skills or those of imagination skills it improves.

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The safari box also offers lots of extras and Harley enjoyed making use of all those extra colouring pages included.

We had lots of fun making pipe cleaner monkeys and Harley loves the animals on lolly sticks, the snake and the leopard and it’s cubs. We still have some activities to finish, which will come in handy on a rainy day.

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Toucan box also makes the perfect gift especially for special occasions such as birthdays. Extra materials can be added to your box for the family with siblings plus the guys at Toucan are happy to add a special birthday message to your box.

For more information visiting the Toucan website by simply clicking HERE.

This is a review post, we were not paid to write this review but did receive a free sample in order to share our honest opinion.

Get creative with a box of Kellogg’s Rice Krispies

15 Jul

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day but now it can also be the most fun.

I was recently sent a big box of Rice Krispies, only this box was slightly different from those you usually see on the shelves down at your local supermarket.

The difference is These boxes are customisable… Yes, your child can really put their own stamp on their cereal.

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There are 8 different special colouring packs of Rice Krispies available. Here’s ours designed by my daughter Alice-Sara age 9.

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Look at the concentration on her face… An artist at work.

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Alice-Sara uses many different colours, stamps, glitter glue and stick-on gems to design her ideal Rice Krispies box.

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Alice-Sara really expressed her creative flare with the use of her magical imagination.

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Colouring in the Kellogg’s Rice Krispies box was loads of fun and Alice-Sara is pretty proud of her creation… And why not, I think she did a brilliant job.

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Special colour me in boxes of Kellogg’s are Available to buy from all good supermarkets. Plus the guys from Kellogg’s Have created its very own Rice Krispies website sharing some super creative ideas to keep your little ones busy this summer, you can even download some pictures of the Rice Krispies crew for them to colour. However, If colouring isn’t their thing then why not try your hand at making one of the fab summer recipes with your Rice Krispies! Check out the cute mouse treats below.

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This post is our entry for the BritMums #ColourMeInRK competition, sponsored by Kellogg’s.

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Thanks to both Britmums and Kellogg’s for running a great competition.
K
Disclaimer: We were not paid to write this post but did receive a box of colour me in Kellogg’s Rice Krispies and a selection of colouring pens and pencils.

The 2012 Lollibop festival for little ones

4 Jul

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So I went last year with the toddler and it was an absolute blast… Now it’s almost that time again… Time for the Lollibop, the kids festival that has it all.

I blogged earlier in the year to alert all readers that the early bird tickets went on sale, now I can’t quite believe that it’s almost here already!

Last years festival was amazing, I went along with my sister and we both took along out toddlers. Seriously, it was a toddlers paradise. I had to drag Harley kicking and screaming when it was time to leave… He loved it.

If you haven’t got your tickets to this years Lollibop at Regents park then you just may want to after reading the updated line up below.

LolliBop, in partnership with John Lewis, is returning to Regent’s Park this summer, with a line up designed to delight mini festival goers. Billed as The Big Bash for Little People, the event takes place between August 17 and 19 and is aimed at children up to the age of 10.

The ‘LolliBop Live’ stage will play host to some of the hottest names in kids entertainment with musical performances from the likes of the ZingZilla’s, Jassa Aluwahlia (Art Attack) and The Mr Men & Little Miss Party Roadshow. TV favourites Dick and Dom will also take to the stage to entertain crowds with their unique blend of music and games.

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Celebrating its first year in the West End, Shrek the Musical will also make a special appearance with a performance from the award-winning show (Sunday 19 only).

Global phenomenon Moshi Monsters will also be on site, bringing the UK’s first Moshi Monsters Mash Up Tournament to Lollibop. Taking place each day, children are challenged to put their Mash Up skills to the test. All players will also receive a free pack of Mash Up cards, so everyone can join in. Fans are encouraged to bring their own collections with them, as there has never been a better chance to trade with other Moshi Card collectors. Head over to the Moshi tent for lots of other fun and games including character appearances, monster quizzes and more!

In the Lollipaladium, see the story of The Gruffalo brought to life on the stage with plenty of audience interaction. CBeebies favourite, Mister Maker will be on hand to demonstrate his unique arts and crafts skills. Mister Maker is a real life character who gets inspiration to make art from everything around him. Packed full of stimulating ideas, set in his own fantasy art world, prepare to expect the unexpected!

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The brand new life-size Transformers Optimus Prime Truck will also be at the three day event, giving fans the chance to get up and personal with this movie legend.

Other headline attractions include yoga sessions with Waybuloo, workshops by Horrible Histories, Roald Dahl Museum and Storytelling Centre, performances by 8ft Titan the Robot, an Alice In Wonderland tea party and a chance to meet ‘Tiny’, a 125 million years young dinosaur.

Pint sized guests (and grown ups) will notice a few more additions to the 2012 event.

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The ‘LolliBop Kitchen‘ is an exciting new area, where LolliBoppers will have the chance to learn new skills from live demonstrations and interactive workshops, featuring popular blogger My Daddy Cooks.

A new ’Tween Town‘ area will feature a number of activities for older kids including street dance, hula-hooping, magic and beat-boxing workshops, plus an older arts and crafts tent and a brand new laser room!

Halfords will create a bespoke Bike City at LolliBop, which will include a Wacky Races obstacle course for under 5’s, where children can be the first to try out a brand new range of Balance and Apollo kids bikes. For older kids, highlights include a BMX stunt display and demo area.

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Other new areas include: ‘LolliBop Animal Curiosities’, which features animals including a polar bear, a dinosaur and gorillas! ‘The Disco Shed‘ which will have mini boppers (and parents!) dancing the day away and ‘The Village Green‘ – the perfect spot to chill out and enjoy some street theatre.

Back by popular demand, the Science Museum are preparing for a triumphant return to Regent’s Park with an expanded area and dedicated Science Zone.

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For pre-schoolers, the ‘3ft & Under’ area is also back. Confirmed activities include a mini disco, tiny play, little arts, baby ballet, yoga, teddy bears picnic and sing and sign. There will be two boob and botty boudoirs this year, and covered buggy parks and lollishade areas are also being created.

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Old favourites, including ‘LolliSports‘, ‘Imagination Stations‘, ‘Itsy Bitsy Strictly‘ and ‘The Enchanted Forest‘ will all also return for 2012.

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And if that wasn’t enough, there are plenty of arts and craft activities, face painting and workshops, including circus skills.

A wide selection of food and drink stalls are on offer to provide a welcome rest.

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All of the activities, stages and events are included in the entry ticket price, which starts at £22 per person. For more information, including a full programme of events, visit www.lollibopfestival.com

Expressing creativity with Galt

25 May

I like to think of myself as quite a creative person, I love getting stuck in to a great art project and I can literally spend hours sketching a picture.

Without being pushy I’ve always tried to encourage the children to express their creative flair.

It’s my belief that art is very therapeutic and although little man isn’t overly keen, he’s creative in his own special ways!

I do a lot of creative projects with the children especially the toddler while the two older children are in school.

My daughter is very naturally creative, and is always drawing a picture or making something from bits and pieces.

She recently came home quite excited over a school art project, a poster designing competition. The poster’s aim is to remind children to be respectful while in the dinner hall. Admittedly we do have a cupboard full of crafts but we were recently sent a giant Galt Art Jar that would fulfil the job perfectly.

The Galt Art Jar is packed full of everything you’re creative little monster would need to complete near enough any art project, whether it be making hairy monsters from Pom-poms, goggly eyes and coloured shredded paper or a poster fit for the school dinner hall.

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Within this huge jar of arty fun you will find…

Over 70 pompoms, 40 wiggly eyes, zigzag scissors, sequin pack, lots of shredded paper, 2m red fringed crepe paper, felt alphabet, 12 assorted plastic buttons, 7 cotton reels, 50 pony beads, 20 small star beads, 10 large pipe cleaners, 10 large straws, 6 sheets of self-adhesive foam sheets, 7 printed card templates, 10 sheets of A4 coloured paper, 25 gummed paper strips, glitter glue, white PVA glue, 2m wiggly white trim, 3m elastic, ideas sheet.

Alice-Sara was extremely pleased to have the Galt Art Jar to hand when designing her poster.

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She’s not yet finished her creation but it’s almost complete and I’ll be sure to upload a picture once it is.

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The GALT Art Jar is fabulous and it’s providing lots of fun for all the children, tomorrow myself and the toddler will make pompom monsters and who knows what else. 🙂

GALT Art Jar cost £14.99 check it out over on their website!

We were not paid to write this review all opinions are my own. We were sent the GALT Art Jar free of charge in order to share our honest thoughts and opinions.

Little Miss Fashion Designer

8 May

Well, it would seem that my daughter Alice-Sara fancies herself as a bit of a fashion designer.

When I was asked if any of the children would like to create their own T-shirt design Alice-Sara was first in line.

Yes, I had a vision of a somewhat messy home, what with fabric paint normally being the way forward. I couldn’t have been more wrong. All that was required was for Alice-Sara to draw her design on paper in which she coloured in felt tip pens as she normally would.

I couldn’t believe how very simple this whole design process was turning out to be! Having simply drawn her design on paper this was then scanned onto the computer and clothes2order done all the hard work so we didn’t have to!

Alice-Sara drew a really bold funky picture of what I’m told is a drawing of myself (seriously… I don’t wear that much lipstick in the flesh).

Clothes2order offer a huge choice of customisable products from great brands. We opted for a plain white T-Shirt in a size 9-10. This was from the well known brand fruit of the loom.

The company stock T-shirts in varying sizes from children’s tees to adults. Because Clothes2order have this huge range on site meaning nothing has to be ordered in and the fact all printing is done on site, makes the service an astoundingly quick one when it comes to dispatch & delivery times.

All customising can be done on line, this includes anything from uploading your design to entering text for added slogans or names. Whether ordering just one t-shirt or 100 (yes, there is no minimum order) this is done in minutes.

Certain product lines are available to order on express delivery but all products are dispatched in record time.

I absolutely love the finished t-shirt bearing my daughters creative drawing of her mummy caked in lipstick… In fact we all thought it was brilliant and now Little man has expressed an interest to possible try his hand at designing one too.

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Designing you’re very own t-shirt Is a fab way of keeping the kids entertained and making their art
Into something that bit more special. I would recommend it to anyone.

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This is a review post, though opinions are honest and that of my own. We received the t-shirt free of charge but was under no obligation to have to write about it.

Are you Doing it for World Autism 2012

2 Apr

It’s here, World Autism Awareness Day and as promised today I’m doing it for autism by posting a picture while wearing something that resembles the autism awareness colours and holding up a card simply stating “Doing it for world autism” (yes, kids enjoyed creating the oversize mask).

This idea was one I put together quite late in the day but still remain hopeful that lots of you will take 5 minutes and snap and share a picture too? Bloggers can post them on their blogs to get the message out, as well as linking here, sharing on twitter using hash tag #worldautism12, share on the A boy with Aspergers Facebook page and anywhere else you fancy. What do you gain from it? Nothing other than the knowledge you took a few minutes to help raise awareness for children like my little man! You don’t even have to be a blogger just sharing your picture on twitter or our Facebook page means everyone can do it but only if they want too!

I’m hoping to collect enough images to create an awareness collage (You can see some old ones by clicking the autism college link in the blogs header).

So, what do you say? Everyone and anyone, whoever you are, wherever you are… Please help me raise awareness and stamp out the ignorance that surrounds us daily!

It will always be world autism day in our house and thousands others besides… Can you take five minutes to make it yours?

So… here’s my picture! Please don’t judge my smoking, it was one of those mornings, plus after Little mans refusal, I was simply filling in at short notice 🙂

Linky will be added to this post:)

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#Silent Sunday

25 Mar

Green living with Cravendale & the Muppets

16 Jan

Now, I consider the family to be relatively “green” though like most things there is always room for improvement! I think it’s a great idea to get your children thinking “green” and as Cravendale have shown, it just takes a little creative imagination.

Cravendale are celebrating the release of Disney’s “The Muppets Movie” due to be released throughout the UK on the 10th February 2012, while helping families to be green.

Kermit The Frog

Image by Eva Rinaldi Celebrity and Live Music Photographer via Flickr

Cravendale are giving away free limited edition sticker sets (4 to collect in total) featuring your favourite characters from the Muppets movie. The stickers can be used to transform empty bottles of Cravendale into something much more fun and entertaining.

The stickers fit onto the bottles perfectly and with a few simple steps Cravendale milk bottles are transformed into a truly awesome Muppets character.

My children loved it, especially the toddler who is crazy about frogs so, seeing the milk bottle transform from its usual boring self, into Kermit the Frog really brighten his morning.

Harley sat and played with his milk bottle Kermit for an hour or more, allowing me a little “Me time” So… Not only did we do something great for our planet, it also allowed me a little peace and quite 🙂 The benefits to being green were truly fabulous.

To get your free stickers to create your own Muppet friends, as well as other exclusive Muppet downloads just visit milkmatters.co.uk

What’s more, there are also VIP tickets for the screening of The Muppets movie to be won by fans who share a picture of their Muppet Cravendale bottles on the Cravendale Facebook page.

So… why not have a go and transform your empty Cravendale milk bottle’s into a delightful new friend.

Thanks to Britmums for supplying us with the stickers.

Olly The Little White Van

16 Dec

Sometimes it’s Lovely to watch something other than Bob the Builder, Peppa pig or Ben and Holly in our house, so when Olly the Little white van popped through our letter box I popped it in the DVD player when Harley wasn’t looking and hoped he would somehow become drawn to it.

 Well, he did and who wouldn’t be? Olly is a lively little white van, who alongside his diver Stan is always happy to help a friend in need in any way he can, while embarking on a host of fun-filled adventures along the way!

 I’ve discovered that this energetic Little white Van is actually a very popular addition to the children’s shows broadcasted on the CITV channel. I will admit we didn’t know this, well we don’t really catch much CITV at-all! Why? Because we normally find ourselves watching Cbeebies (I say we, I actually don’t mean me, just the tiny toddler, Harley)! I was pleasantly surprised with this upbeat children’s show with funky theme tune and nicely wrote story lines, Oh, and yes… so was Harley. 

 There are many other fab-tastic characters besides Olly and his driver Stan! There’s Olly’s mischievous best friend Bazza and the ever experienced Jethro the tractor too.

When I loaded the DVD in the player, I did so before getting a look at any press release so instead of putting my coffee to one side and getting of my backside I sat thinking to oneself, “God I know that voice”and know it I did, once the penny had finally hit the ground I realised that the familiar voice being played through my TV set was in fact OBE award receiver Justine Fletcher, known to many as the lovely Mr tumble…. from “Something Special” amongst many other children’s favourites.

 We, Oops… I mean Harley 🙂 really did enjoy watching these perfectly timed episodes of Olly and his friends (each one lasting around five minutes each, therefore doing a splendid job at holding tiny tots and their tiny attention spans, unless your children are that bit older in that case you may find them a little bit short). 

 With each episode myself and the tiny terror swung our pants & pull-ups to the funky beats of the very catchy theme tune, and when it was over the tune just kept on playing (IN MY HEAD)!

 This really is one you might like to take a peek at! Little boys & girls alike will love the fun adventures of this super cool little white van who shares a very important message that… “Helping people is a good thing to do” Sadly you can guarantee you’ll be quite drawn to it too.

 Don’t take my word for it, just make sure you tune in to CITV weekday mornings at 9.45 am and if that’s to early or you’re not back from that oh so lovely school run by then, you can also catch it during the afternoons at 1pm

CITV

Image via Wikipedia

 Note

If your little one(s) get hooked and becomes a Olly fan, then get them over to the Olly site where little ones will be further entertained in one of the many activities laid on for them to enjoy, they can even make you a Christmas card… HO-HO-HO! 

 Check it out by Clicking HERE

Disclaimer

We received a sample copy of Olly The Little White Van on DVD in-order to write this review, however all thoughts and opinions are my own and haven’t been influenced in any way. 

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