Showing posts with label Review. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Review. Show all posts

Tuesday, 18 June 2013

Weetabix on the Go!

We were kindly sent some new Weetabix on the go biscuits to try out and they have been going down a treat! Weetabix is a big favourite in our house with both adults and children, it's a name I trust and so I am always more than willing to give their new products a go.

The biscuits are really yummy – like Weetabix they have a savoury, wholesome feel to them but are delicious flavours with a hint of sweetness... just sweet enough I would say. I hate to be bombarded with sugar at breakfast time! The flavours we tried were 'fruit & fibre' and 'apple with a hint of cinnamon', both were lovely and I would be hard pushed to choose a favourite. Also available are 'milk & cereals' which, having tasted these, I would love to try.

Before baby number 2 appeared a few months back and I was a working mum, I was out the door at 6.45 four days a week. Breakfast on the go was a concept I was very familiar with and I would have happily have popped these in my bag for the journey or kept a packet on my desk for emergencies! 

They come in packs of four and a serving of four biscuits provides all the fibre, vitamins and minerals of two Weetabix. They are quite filling though, which is a really great thing, but you may struggle to eat four all in one sitting! If you are on the go you don't really have anywhere to store the leftovers, perfect however if you have people to share them with!

My three year old is a massive fan of them... after she has her bowl of Weetabix and toast in the morning she has started asking for a "weetabiscuit" now! Since she is not officially "on the go" I have said no but I have started giving her one as an 11 o'clock snack or for when she gets home from nursery. They are a great, wholesome, tasty treat to have on hand and she really loves them! Well worth a try!

Tuesday, 11 June 2013

Gadget Ga Ga Post 3 – Tommee Tippee Electric Breast Pump

Tommee Tippee very kindly sent me an electric breast pump to try out. Again, after using it, I have found this is something I wish I had invested in with my daughter. I purchased a hand pump when I was pregnant with her and to be honest it was such hard work I soon abandoned it and substituted her with formula when I had too. Breast feeding was not plain sailing with her and the first few weeks was all about expressing and formula and just trying to get her to eat! We got there in the end but this time I wanted to be ready. As it happened my little man was a whole different story and took to breast feeding really well, perhaps this is more the case with second babies? He was wide awake, alert and ready to go so after trying the pump out once I decided not to jinx the easy feeds and leave it for a couple of months which is why it has taken me so long to review!

Once we were more in the swing of things I gave expressing more of a go and have found the pump fantastic as it opens your options and gives you some freedom! Evenings are when everything starts to go a bit manic in our house – my 3 year old is tired and both kiddies need baths... 3 year old wants a story and baby cries through it as he's getting tired. It is the one point of the day I have one of those silent cream moments! My little girl has been such a superstar though and not complained about the new baby at all and so it is really important to me that she still gets tucked in by mummy and has her lullaby, just like she used to. The pump means I can have a bottle ready for Daddy to take over with baby and for a few minutes she gets me all to herself again!

The pump is really easy to use... you simply start off on the low setting to encourage the milk to release and then I tend to gradually increase the speed. I haven't really got into storing or freezing the milk, I just have 2 Tommee Tippee bottles and express straight into them. It can seem like a slow process but it takes about the same time as a feed and if I do it at the same time everyday it helps. The pump comes with everything you need and is actually very good value (especially if you consider the price of formula). A first bottle and teat is included and you also get a microwaveable steriliser which fits everything you need in. After I first sterilised the parts it looked like an impossible puzzle but it was actually very easy to put back together.

One of the complaints I have heard about this product is that it is quite noisy but it is not something that bothers me. Yes it makes a noise but it is not overly loud and I have used it while the family is watching television together and not disturbed anybody. I think for the price you pay you are getting good value for money. I have found it very comfortable to use – the closer to nature claim seems to stand true – it is a funny sensation at first and you do feel a bit silly but it doesn't hurt and you can even do it whilst multitasking at reading your toddler a story!

My little baby boy blue is completely fussy (typical man) and refuses to take anyd formula milk so I can see myself breastfeeding for a lot longer this time around. As I need to get out more and even get back to work I can see this pump being a godsend and great to have in the house!

Monday, 10 June 2013

Gadget Ga Ga post 2 - Tommee Tippee Nappy Disposal System

Once again with my first baby I had decided a nappy bin was an unnecessary expense - surely it's just an ordinary bin and you just put the nappies straight out anyway?

Well no! I did try but when you have a hundred things to think about and a crying baby you don't get round to it. My sister brought one of these bins for her baby and I found myself coming round to the idea.

So this time around my mother in law very kindly surprised us with the Tommee Tippee Sangenic Nappy Disposal System and it is fantastic!

You buy special nappy sack cartridges which fit within the bin, they are easy to fit, you just tie a knot in one end of the sack and hook it under. Then every time you have a dirty nappy, you pop it in, twist the handle round do the nappy is tied up, then push the lid down (which pushes the nappy in to the bin). The fragranced bags mean there is no build up of smell and there nappies are instantly tucked out of sight. I have found I have to empty it just over once a week. It is quite a funny sight when you pull out the string of nappies! I tend to tip them straight into a bin bag and take that straight out.

It is such a neat solution I wish I had had one before! The only downside is that you have to buy the cartridges. I haven't actually brought one yet though - our bin came in a value back with a stash of them and after 3 months I still have 1 roll left. I probably use about 2 rolls a month so they seem to last quite well and I have been really pleased!

please note I have received no incentive to write this review, I just wanted to share my thoughts!

Wednesday, 29 May 2013

Gadget ga ga post 1: Gro-swaddle blanket

The Gro-swaddle blanket from the gro company was one of my favourite things I had for my newborn this time around. We just had blankets for my daughter which was fine but I struggled with the swaddling when we brought her home. A friend told me you have to think of it like you're wrapping a fajita which made me laugh... I did used to work in a Mexican restaurant but even those credentials didn't help me!

The swaddling blanket is the easiest thing in the world, you lie your baby down in the middle of the blanket and then there a bottom section you simply fold up over them. You then fold over the sides – first the shorter side, and then wrap over the long side. It is so simple and my baby boy had many a snug sleep in his. I know a lot of people struggle with swaddling, it is great for the baby to feel secure but I could just never manage it. The Gro blanket gave me personally some peace of mind putting my little one down for a sleep and I was always gutted when it had to go in the wash! I had read reviews before I got one and a common complaint had been that the fabric was too stretchy, personally I couldn't see how this was a problem and absolutely loved mine.

It came in a really cute pattern too! It was great for the first couple of months and we have now moved on to sleeping bags. It would be a fantastic baby shower gift for somebody to have ready for their newborn.

NB I have not been payed or sent this item to review, I just love it and wanted to share!

Tuesday, 7 May 2013

Pizza movie night! Chicago Town Deep Dish Hot Dog Pizzas

At the end of a busy week my daughter and I often reach Friday and decide to snuggle up and have a movie night while we wait for Daddy get home to start the weekend.

We had some Chicago Town Deep Dish Pizzas to try out with our movie this Friday, and boy they were good! I have to admit I am usually more of a thin crust girl but these are delicious. They are not too stodgy and packed to the edges with topping. This is great for kids as they tend to leave the crusts (and that can sometimes mean half the pizza). They are a nice size and you can really have one each. We tried the limited addition hot dog flavour which was scrummy and full of flavour. We also had to try the ham and pineapple as its my daughters favourite!

Mmmmm American style yumminess!
They were delicious baked in the oven but can also be done in the microwave... which was very handy for my other half when he got in late and had to fend for himself!

A great family treat to keep stocked in the freezer, thanks Chicago town was a good start to our bank holiday weekend!!

Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Gadget Ga Ga

I have done things backwards, with my first child I was all about the basics as I was determined not to waste my or anyone else's money on baby gadgetry that you just don't need.

This time I have felt a bit differently, I already had the basics and have let people buy things that, actually, I realised could come in a little bit handy.

So over the next week I am going gadget ga ga and am going to blog about the contraptions and products that have actually made life a bit easier. If you have reviewed any of the products I mention feel free to leave links as I'm sure people like more than one opinion!

My first post will be the gro swaddling blanket. Coming up I have nappy bags, bins, breast pumps, chairs and slings so please check back and have a read!

Monday, 22 April 2013

Newborns... Vertbaudet style!

With the arrival of our baby boy we were so lucky again with gorgeous gifts from friends and family. Our little boy is well kitted out for a couple of months and I have picked up some great gift ideas for a few expectant mums I know!

One of my favourites was a newborn set sent to us from Vertbaudet. I found that actually we had hardly any newborn clothes ready for him as people tend to buy a size or two up, so this outfit was a life saver!

The set came in a cute little bag and contained a long sleeved vest, hat and baby grow. We were sent the set in yellow which was lovely as everything else he owns is blue blue blue! It's great if you want to buy before you know what your having as it could suit boy or girl. I often think unisex clothes are pretty boring but this is gorgeous and I would happily buy it in advance.

The clothes are lovely quality and the grow is nice and thick, so it has been my outfit of choice to keep baby snug when out and aboute. One of my favourite things about it is the design of the vest, it crosses over and buttons at the side (as well as the bottom) so is really easy to get on and off. Newborn babies are so delicate and I loved not having to try and get it over his head and struggle getting his arms in, especially when it's long sleeved - so much easier!

So what do you think of my little model? I think my handsome man looks cute as anything! According to mum "J'aime rever" means "I love to dream" which is lovely don't you think?! I wonder what he does dream about?


We were also sent this fantastic canvas toy box. It is easy to assemble and looks great in any room, a great gift idea or addition to your nursery! I was so so pleased to receive this as we didn't have anything like this ready for his room. As people gave our baby boy gifts of toys and books it was lovely to have somewhere to store them straight away.

dog courtesy of baby's uncle ;)

The design and colours look great and being neutral would fit in with any room design. I love the fact it's on wheels so you can move it easily once it is packed full of toys. It would be a great gift for somebody who you think already has everything, it can be hard to think of something to buy for a second baby if they are fully stocked with hand-me-downs, this is ideal. A great storage solution for your new baby!

Monday, 25 March 2013

Alphablocks Phonics First Steps DVD review

We were sent an Alphablocks DVD to review from Abbey Kids and I couldn't wait to receive it as I am a big fan of the show. We are a bit late with this review due to the distraction of the arrival of baby brother but my 3 year old has been enjoying this a lot over the last few weeks! It's provided a great distraction for my daughter for those inevitable moments when mummy has been a little bit busier than usual... and as she's learning while she's watching I am not left with the guilt factor!

If you haven't seen Alphablocks before, it is a fantastic learning cartoon which helps children learn phonics. The Alphablocks really make learning letter sounds fun and show children how to put sounds together to form words. It is all done in an entertaining way so kiddies don't even realise they are learning, which is the best way I think!

Each Alphablock character is a different letter and makes it own sound in clever ways, for example letter 'm' is a chef who likes to say "mmmmmmmmm" and 'd' loves to "d d d d d drum". The characters use a lot of aliteration when they talk to really hammer in their individual letter sounds. When the letters come together and hold hands they each make their sounds and the join them up to form the new word. My daughter will really happily sit and watch it and it really helped her pick up her letter sounds at a young age. She's 3 and a half now and is starting to put her sounds together (to mummy's amazement) to read simple words like dog, cat... and activities like this really help.

Phonics didn't exist when I was learning to read, so a lot of parents won't really know how to get their children started on it. I have an ex-primary school teacher mum who pointed out to me early on I was doing the sounds all wrong when teaching my daughter the alphabet! The DVD includes a Parents Guide which gives some helpful tips.

The DVD is fantastic and has episodes a plenty, you get a really long run time so you really won't feel short changed. The episodes are great fun and Squiggle would happily watch the whole thing in one go but I have been breaking it down into a few episodes at a time to help her take it all in. A couple of the episodes even had her laughing out loud, and she'll happily watch her favourites over and over.

The DVD also comes with a great poster which she has put up in her bedroom and is a great way to introduce little games and practice sounds away from the programme.

We will be getting a lot more use out of this DVD for a while but I will eventually be buying the next volume in the series to keep up the good work!

Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Review – MaterniCare Pre and Post Natal Nourishing Cream Review

For the last week I have been lucky enough to be testing out MaterniCare, a new pre & post natal nourishing cream.

With a unique blend of rich plant oils and essential vitamins it is designed to nourish and care for your skin as your bump grows and then to support your body as it recovers.

I am now at 37 weeks and I honestly wish I had discovered this cream earlier! It's brand new on our shelves though and I believe being launched in Boots this month.

Aside from the worry of stretch marks, my skin on my ever expanding tummy had been starting to get quite dry – the cold weather probably hasn't helped! As it stretches tighter I've been finding it getting itchy, irritated and generally in need of some loving care!

The MaterniCare cream is a lovely thick smooth cream which really feels like it is nourishing every inch of your skin. It doesn't leave any greasiness - just smoothness and softness. I found it a really relaxing experience applying the cream and have been using it before bed to help me feel calm and replenished. My skin hasn't been dry since using it and so I gave been much more comfortable during the day. I imagine it would go some way to help prevent stretch marks although it's too late in the day for me to probably tell!

They say for best results to apply after soaking the skin. I've not had much time for baths this time around but I know during my first pregnancy (when I wasn't always busy bathing a toddler) it was a frequent routine!

I have tried other creams in the past, one quite expensive which I found light and a bit greasy and other than that I have had cocoa butter. That seems to be what people recommend but for me, after a while, the smell became just too much, you don't want a strong smell when you are using something day to day!! MaterniCare is fragrance free which was a huge plus for me. I want to smell like me, not somebody covered in maternity products!

Here's a bit about what they say about the cream:

Its gentle, hypoallergenic formula is packed full of pro-vitamin B5 – a powerful natural skin healer and protector – as well as almond, avocado and grape seed oils, vitamin E and soothing calendula. Massaging MaterniCare into your breasts, tummy, thighs, hips and bottom twice daily will help keep your skin strong, smooth and supple throughout.

Sounds good? I was lucky enough to be sent this to try for free but I would honestly recommend it, it's has been a big hit with me and with big bump!

Sunday, 27 January 2013

Charming & tasty valentine's cakes from Baker Days

The new way to celebrate - petite and personalised cakes  delivering perfectly fresh and delicious cake through the letterbox from just £14.99

Well I am really pleased I got to review this product, I am quite smitten with it! Baker Days kindly sent me a valentines cake of my choice to review so my lucky husband has had an early gift this year! Baker Days produce letterbox cakes which can be personalised and there are some lovely designs and flavours to choose from:

I opted for the Love Birds cake and decided on the message "twit wooooo!" (well it amused me). Not long after a neat little box arrived through the post and this is what you we found when we opened it:

It's a really lovely little tin and so great that it can fit through a letterbox, it means you don't have the worry about somebody being in to sign for it, which makes for a stress free gift! The cake is really neatly packaged and travelled no trouble at all.

I was really pleased with the design I chose and my other half thought it was very sweet, and most importantly delicious! In order to do a thorough review I obviously had to try a slice... or three. I had meant to only have a small slice and leave the rest for my husband but it was so moist, tasty and very very moreish I had almost half of it! I'd say they are the perfect size for two to share which is what you want on Valentines Day really.

If you fancy a change from flowers and chocolates this is a fantastic idea, I would have been over the moon to receive one as a surprise gift through my door. They do a great range of cakes for other occasions too, everything from birthdays to get well soon cakes. I have a friend who's recently given birth and I think a new baby cake would be a great surprise for her.

To discover their huge range of letterbox cakes, the website is well worth a visit: and if you do get one, please try and save a slice for me!

Thursday, 20 December 2012

My favourite baby doll yet – Baby Born Interactive Star Doll

When I first saw this Baby Born doll I wasn't too sure. I have to admit I was slightly put off by her outfit, a trendy mix of black and silver (and just a little bit bling) which I just wasn't sure my daughter would get. She also comes with bracelets and her own ID card which didn't live up to my ideas of a cute doll. I guess this is designed to appeal to older children and after getting her out of the box and playing with her, she has completely won mummy over!

Honestly, we just love this doll! She comes with a feeding bowl, sachet of porridge (which you can actually feed to her), spare nappy, potty, bottle, card, change of bracelet and dummy.
This is a great range of accessories which come to life when used with the doll.

If you give Baby Born a drink of water from her bottle and lie her down she will wet her nappy (you get one spare), they are really realistic little nappies and great for playing mum. 

You can also sit her on her potty, push her belly button and she will do her wee wee very nicely into the potty. 

Poor little mite, if you squeeze her arms a few times she really cries – just look at her little face, my little one is going to love taking care of her. All the features are really easy to operate and her clothes are easy to get on and off so little ones won't get frustrated playing with her.

As if all this wasn't enough it is wrapped up nicely by the fact she NEEDS NO BATTERIES! This is fantastic considering how much interactivity there is. Plus when she drops off to sleep she is nice and quiet and wont suddenly scare the life out of you when she starts snoring when you were least expecting it!

Baby Born Interactive Star is available in Toys R Us for Christmas and is our top pick of the baby dolls we have played with.

It's a sad review as it is our last review as Toyologists, but I'm pleased we finished on a great product. I can't believe it is over, I hope you've enjoyed reading them as much as we have enjoyed taking part. Happy Christmas and thanks Geoffrey! 

Monday, 10 December 2012

Chou Chou Baby Monitor Doll Toyologist Review

This was the second of our baby doll reviews for the Toys R Us Toyologist programme – this time it was the Chou Chou baby and monitor up for playtime! The doll is nice enough looking but I was just slightly put off by her complexion - so pail the poor thing! Her face is nice though and she comes with a great twist to set her apart from other dolls – the baby monitor!

My pregnancy brain seems to be getting the best of me at the moment so it took me a few attempts to follow the instructions and get the doll working. It's actually very simple, if you set her to auto she works in conjunction with the monitor, otherwise it is freestyle play!

The monitor is a nice idea as it enhances the idea that your child is really caring for the doll. It tells your little one what their baby Chou Chou needs, so if they are crying and the milk bottle symbol appears, the crying is stopped by giving the doll her bottle and so on. The monitor also plays a lullaby for when she's tired, and there is also a dummy to comfort her. My daughter isn't especially into baby dolls so not the best case study but she did enjoy being in charge of the monitor. Her friend who is baby mad absolutely loved it however and I think could spend hours making sure she was caring for baby Chou Chou correctly.

I'd say a fantastic twist on the traditional baby doll with some great interactive play. If you are looking for a doll for Christmas who is a bit different from those in their collection baby Chou Chou is a great option.

And relax... 'The White Company' candle review

I love The White Company, just walking into their shops makes me feel calmer – they are so stylish and serene! I was very excited therefore to be sent one of their candles and was instantly imagining how my home would be transformed it's own calm haven.

And it did... a bit! After a busy Saturday and once Squiggle had finally gone to bed, and I shoved all the toys I could away into the magic cupboard, I lit my new candle and relaxed!

There is something so calming about a nice candle, and this didn't let me down. I really loved the scent of this one, I was sent the Orange Grove candle which is a gorgeous blend of mandarin, bergamot and orange flower. It is really unusual - in a good way! It's still quite autumnal and cosy but at the same time light and uplifting, not one to weigh you down and send you off to sleep.

My favourite thing about it has to be the packaging, it arrived really smartly packaged and the simple glass candle design looks great sitting out in any home. I would happily give one of these candles as a gift for somebody and in fact am off to investigate the other scents as a possible extra present for my mother-in-law.

Thank you The White Company,

Love a very relaxed mummy xx

Monday, 3 December 2012

Roaring Raa Raa Toyologist Review

The next toy out of our toyologist box is the roaring Raa Raa. Great for little fans of Raa Raa the noisy lion, you simply push his head down and then watch him roar, not only that he'll give a little shake too! If you hold his head down for longer, he builds up to it and gives an even bigger roar. Watch our video and you'll get the idea!

Raa Raa seems pretty hard wearing, I struggled to get him working at first but I am putting that down to me being slightly ditzy in pregnancy as my husband sorted it instantly! His body is quite solid due to the mechanism inside and so perhaps not the choice if you are looking for a toy to cuddle.

I'm not sure it's the kind of toy that will stand the test of time in our house as I think the novelty will wear off fairly quickly! My daughter has really enjoyed playing with him though and if you have a Raa Raa fan in your house they will probably find him even more amusing!

Snazaroo Face Painting Sticks Toyologist Review

Well I didn't expect a little packet like this to bring us such a lot of fun. I have to admit I can be a bit of a grumpy mummy when it comes to face painting, when out I try and take a different route so my daughter won't spot it and when she does get it done I always ask for something small on one cheek. It would never have crossed my mind as a stocking filler but I'm converted! These would make a fab one!!

My little girl took one look at the packet and decided she wanted the butterfly in the picture so I did my best! As they are like crayons they are actually quite easy to use, and she was very chuffed with the results! She then had great fun turning me into a tiger, she concentrated really hard and loved being able to use them herself!

Next she decided I had to be a mummy butterfly instead so off we went again after a few baby wipes (I got off lightly she decided Daddy was to be a river!).

Once I was a butterfly too I think we spent a good hour fluttering round the lounge and hiding behind the curtains, which were here butterfly house.

I really loved how much something so little encouraged her imagination to go wild and got her lost in her make believe world. A great gift idea!

Silver Cross Ranger Pram Review

Toys r Us kindly sent us this lovely Silver Cross Ranger Pram to review as part of the Toyologist programme. They must have known I would love it, it's the exact same pram I chose for my daughter as her present from Santa last Christmas! It means I can give you more of a long-term review of this product and can vouch for it's quality - ours still looks new itself a year later!

I spent a long time choosing this pram at the time, as there were certain features I really wanted and it hasn't let us down. Here's what we were after:

1. A lie flat pram my daughter could put her toys to sleep in as that is always a favourite game.

2. One that she could push now (she had just turned 2) but that would also be big enough to last a few years.

3. It had to fold flat! We have no storage space in our house.

4. To look lovely and have a nice design. I just really wanted my daughter's first pram to feel a bit special!

The silver cross delivers all of these and I felt was great value. The style of it is nice and classic and comes in a great range of patterns. Toys R Us sent us the 'my little star' pattern which you can see is really pretty and very girly! This pram is perfect for getting toys off to sleep - it has a pram cover and hood for when they need a little nap!!

It folds down flat very easily and we can fit it neatly under squiggle's bed when she isn't using it. The handle bars swizzle up and down so that it can adjust to different heights and grow with your child. My little one has just turned three but is more the height of some four year olds and it's still a great size for her.

The only slight downside we found was that when she was small she could only push it in a straight line, the wheels don't swizzle so after hitting a dead end she would wait for me to turn it for her.

The pram has some great roll play features, it comes with a base shelf and it's own matching nappy bag. My daughter has loved packing the little bag with things she might need, and playing at going shopping and filling the shelf with toy food. I think we still have a lot more fun to come from it too, even my 6/7 year old nieces still love playing babies!

If you are looking for a toy pram this Christmas, this one definitely gets a big thumbs up from us!

Monday, 26 November 2012

Broom broom beep beep! Melissa and Doug transporter toyologist review

Time to get a move on with our final box of toyologist reviews, Christmas is fast approaching and we want them to be helpful for people looking for present inspiration!

The first thing I decided to give Squiggle to play with from the box was this lovely Melissa & Doug wooden transporter. She has so many girlie toys that I was relieved to see something different!

We have been really impressed with this toy. I can't help it, I just love the look, feel and nostalgia of wooden toys. This one is really nicely made, great quality, simple and fun.

The set comes with a wooden transporter and four different coloured wooden cars. Little ones can really easily fold the truck down flat, drive the cars on to their slots, and then move it up again. My daughter has really enjoyed playing with this, we have had a fair bit of car trouble lately so she been happily playing poorly cars who need rescuing!

My husband pointed out how funny the instant girl / boy differences are. Where the boys would be having fun zooming and crashing the cars about, Squiggle straight away had them all involved in a role play game. Her toy animals were trying to get somewhere when the transporter bringing their cars tipped over. The animals turned it over and worked together to try to fix it. Amazing!!! I love simple toys that work really well and encourage little imaginations.

It's a nice chunky toy too so would suit children younger than my daughter really well. The cars are a nice size for little hands to push about.

It's been great having something different in the house, and something Daddy has enjoyed playing with her. I have also had lots of fun listening to some very creative sound effects coming from the living room!

Recommended for ages 2+ this is a great gift idea for both boys and girls and is available at Toys R Us.

If you are looking for more inspiration head over to the toyologist review blog.

Xia Xia Crab & Confetti Cottage from Find Me A Gift

The lovely very kindly sent us a Xia Xia Turks Crab and Xia Xia Confetti Cottage to review and it had been a huge hit!

The minute I saw the toys I had a feeling they would go down well with my little 3 year old girl. She has a bit of a fascination with sea creatures and loves little toys she can collect and play about with.

I had seen some of the Xia Xia range about and always wondered what they were, so it was great to get the chance to find out!

The big difference between these and other small collectible animals is that they move. The crabs are touch sensitive so when you give her claws a poke she scuttles about and changes direction when she hits an obstacle. She is great fun and the movement really helps bring the toy to life.

Another lovely feature is that you can remove her shell and there is a small character that lives inside. My daughter had great fun with this - playing at removing her shell and putting her to bed. Although small it's not too fiddly and easy for little ones to do. I believe the shells are interchangeable so I imagine it would be fun if they had more than one.

Find me a gift also sent us the play house, I wouldn't often recommend the playsets that come with toys but this is great. It has two floors and you can open different doors in the walls and roof to play with it. My little girl loved the fact that this was her little pet crab and she was looking after it. Turks the crab sleeps upstairs and her shell is kept safely downstairs while she is in her house.

The house has a carry handle so Squiggle has taken it everywhere, telling people all about her pet crab. The brilliant thing is that because the lobster is touch sensitive, when she starts carrying the case, as if by magic, Turks starts scuttling about inside her house. Squiggle took great delight in shouting into the house that she was supposed to be asleep!!

When we asked my daughter what she would like to ask Santa for the other day her answer was "a tiger, a sparkly ring and crabs!" My husband and I were totally confused about the crab request but then the penny dropped!

So Xia Xia is now high on my daughters Christmas list and I would recommend them as a great little stocking filler.

A glowing review but my honest opinion!! X