How to Create a Stop Animation Film for Christmas

Don’t you love a good Christmas advert? As much as The Snowman, and Elf, waiting to watch the newest Christmas adverts has become a marker of Christmas – the start to the festive season, and our kids want them played again and again throughout December. But this week has been even more exciting, as they’ve had the chance to make their own, courtesy of a fab stop animation kit from Sainsbury’s. Sponsored post with Sainsbury’s. Inspired by the stop animation film of their own Christmas advert, and its message around spending more time with family and friends over the holiday, …

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Do you really need a car dashcam?

A review of the Mio Mivue 688 There are a number of car dashcams on the market; a recent addition to the car tech available, a dashcam is basically a small camera that records footage of your journey, essentially to be used as proof in the event of an accident or insurance claim. Think of it as a kind of aeroplane ‘black box’ for your car. But it’s not an inexpensive item, so the question is, do you really need one? We reviewed the Mio Mivue 688 dashcam to find out. Why have a dashcam? It will reduce your insurance …

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Turning 50, Feeling Hotter

The time has come for expensive jeans, and comfy shoes. I took my daughter to our local catwalk show last month. As I gazed at the models – all local girls, some of them mums I knew from the playground – something clicked in my mind. All ordinary women, looking amazing in interesting clothes, holding their heads high, knowing they looked good. Wearing gorgeous throw-on knits, skinny jeans, sparkling pantsuits, and exquisite blouses. Yes, blouses. Time was, a blouse was a thing you wore to tea with your grandmother, not an article of chic glamour, but times have changed, and …

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Wicked: an Alternative to the Panto at Christmas

When my kids were young they loved a pantomime at Christmas. It’s the slapstick, the limerick nature of it all, the cheesy jokes, and the audience participation – it never fails with younger kids. But Maddie is now 12, and though she still wants a special trip to the theatre at Christmas time, she has outgrown the panto, seen the Snowman, and is not yet old enough to really appreciate a full ballet production of the Nutcracker. So we went to see Wicked. It has exactly the right amount of fairytale and costume excess to fit the bill of a …

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St Albans Restaurants: a Family Dinner Busaba Thai

When you think of family dining you’re not likely to have Thai food at the top of your list. Children and spices don’t make a natural pair, especially if you have traditional eaters. We’re unusual, in that the Bug is a huge lover of chilli, and seafood; however Maddie prefers straightforward English dishes – a roast and a crumble is probably her favourite option – and will admit to liking standard children’s menu fare. As parents it can be tricky to find a restaurant that suits your own tastes, but also caters well for (and challenges the taste buds of) …

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