Review: Inflatable Snowman by Maplin.

*I was sent this product in return for an honest review*

I was so excited when I found out Maplin wanted me to review their 6ft Inflatable Light Up Snowman. I’d actually been trying to persuade Alan to add one to our outdoor display, so I was made up to receive this opportunity to review it. Unfortunately my Snowman was delivered just after we’d taken our Christmas decorations down, but that didn’t stop me giving it a try.

The instructions on the box were very simple and easy to follow. I had expected it to be a lot harder to set up than it was. It was literally plug in and go. I inflated it for the purpose of this review in my office, although it is for use outdoors only. There are ground pegs included in the box to secure it outdoors.

The Snowman is made from waterproof fabric and is weather resistant. The whole snowman lights up and displays a scrolling Merry Christmas message. I am so excited to set this up with our decorations next Christmas. It will definitely be the focal point of our display. You can see our 2017 Christmas lights here.




George’s Grotto

This Christmas our home has been turned into a Grotto in memory of my late father in law who sadly passed away from cancer recently.


My husband, his siblings and everyone who knew George remember how much he loved Christmas. He would always turn his home into a grotto every Christmas without fail. He would always encourage others to do the same and always offered a hand. My sister-in-law’s both remember times when George went to stayed at Christmas and would help set up their decorations.

This year we have all decorated our homes in his memory. We would like to raise money for Macmillan Cancer Support, who helped support George throughout his illness. You can donate at our fundraising page here


Message from Santa App

I recently discovered the Message from Santa App from another mum on the PTA and had to give it a try! I think its great! You can call Santa’s voicemail, Get a Call from Santa or Text Santa.

When you call Santa’s voicemail you get a list of options and some of these are really great!

1 Record your Christmas wish-list.
2 Put someone on naughty or nice list.
3 Check what Santa’s doing right now.
4 Check weather in North-pole
5 Check how many days until Christmas?
6 Find out the names of the reindeer
9 leave Santa a message

You can text Santa and get an instant reply.

You can get a call from Santa for a variety of reasons. He can call to put the recipient on the naughty/nice list or to say he/she must get ready for school/bed.

We’ve had great fun in counting down the days using the voicemail, finding out what Santa’s been doing and on the odd occasion of bad behaviour I’ve phoned to put the boys on the naughty list.

You can download the Message to Santa App here.


Blogmas Day 5: BusyLazyMum’s Top 5 Christmas Movies

BusyLazyMum’s Top 5 Christmas Movies

1. Home Alone.

I love this film! My husband loves it too and the boys recently watched it for the first time and they found it hilarious. They love Tom & Jerry and this film is the ‘real life’ version of slap stick comedy. This almost 30 year old film is still a classic.

2. Love Actually.

Who doesn’t love a star studded lovey-dovey Rom-Com at Christmas.

3. The Grinch.

I’m a big fan of the Dr Seuss books/films and Jim Carrey doesn’t disappoint when the Grinch seeks revenge on Whoville but is befriended by a little girl.

4. The Holiday.

Another festive star studded lovey dovey rom-com to snuggle up and watch at Christmas.

5. Elf

Being raised by Elf’s Buddy was always going to be the most festive man in New York.

What are your favourite Christmas movies? What makes a good festive film?

Blogmas Day 4: Christmas Pantomimes

Christmas 2016 we had our first family pantomime visit, we chose Cinderella at the Floral Pavillion in New Brighton. I wasn’t sure if the boy were too young to understand but they watched the whole thing and were glued to the stag.

The show starred Olivia Birchenough from Milkshake as Cinderella, Tam Ryan, comedian as Buttons, Alison Hammond as the Fairy Godmother and Jamie Morris and Tarot Joseph as the Ugly Sisters.

The show was great. The ugly sisters were very funny and Tristan said his favourite part was when they sang ghost busters and one of the ugly sisters scared the ghost away. The show was filled with fun and laughter, some sadness and of course a happy ending. The audience were amazed when an actual Shetland pony was brought onto the stage.

A annual visit to a pantomime is definitely going to become a Christmas tradition, although we haven’t booked this years yet – mainly because I can’t decide which to attend as there’s lots of choice this year.

Pantomimes in the North West this Christmas include


Day 1: Happy First of December… He’s here, He’s here.

Happy 1st December!! How quickly has it come around this year?? Not quite feeling the Christmas spirit yet this year, it’s been a hard year and I’m usually finishing off our Christmas shopping round about now but I’ve barely started. I’m going to pursue in the Christmas fun for the boys and hopefully the Christmas spirit will appear somewhere along the way.

For many the 1st of December brings the advent calendars and lots of excitement for chocolate for breakfast. For some it bring the elf on the shelf. In our house we do the elf slightly differently than the typical elf on the shelf, we do a mixture of the elf bringing treats and/or activities, days out or just being mischievous. The first of December marks his arrival and this morning the boys woke up and excitedly asked if they could come downstairs to see if the elf had come this year; because Santa needs lots of elf’s to stay back home so not everyone gets an elf. Tristan was the first downstairs this morning and he screamed ‘He’s here!! He’s here!! and he’s brought advent calendars.’

elf on the shelf busylazymum #blogmas Christmas 2017Advent Calendars: Moo-free £2.99 from Aldi, personalised Snowman & Snow dog white chocolate £5 from Thornton’s, Scooby Snacks for Dogs £2.99 from B&M, personalised Santa £5 from Thornton’s and Chocologic Free from £2.50 from Tesco.

I debated getting a ‘proper’ elf on the shelf elf this year as the boys are both a bit older and I think the cuddly elf might be getting a bit young for them now, but I decided to stick with him for the time being as we’ve had so much fun with him and with moving house thought it’d be nice to have Buddy here instead of more change for them.

In the past Buddy our elf has…

…Decorated the boys bedroom ready for Christmas.

…brought us our letter to Santa kits.

…brought us our Christmas cards to write and festive snacks.

…snuck into our apartment at Butlin’s to surprise us with a North Pole Breakfast.


… brought us Christmas Crafts.

Our Elf Buddy has been so much fun in the past and I’m looking forward to seeing the excitement on the boys faces each day when they find out where he’s hiding, what he’s done or what he’s brought.

You can keep updated with our elf antics over at Buddy’s Elf Antics 2017.

Don’t forget to come back tomorrow to check out Blogmas: Day 2.


Very Christmas Blogger Event

Last Saturday I was invited to the Very Christmas Blogger event in Liverpool. It’s the first blogging event I’ve been invited to and I was both nervous and excited to attend.Very Christmas Blogger Event #VeryParty

As we walked into the building I wasn’t sure what to expect. We entered the product showcase room to lots of sparkly and bright clothing, perfect for any Christmas Party. The room was divided into Womenswear, Menswear, Childrenswear and Beauty & Jewellery.


This V by Very Unique silver one sleeve dress was my favourite and you can find it on their website here for £60.

I’m definitely more of a boots kinda girl and I adored these grey boots.


Although I don’t really know much about Men’s fashion, you couldn’t go wrong with any of the items on show for your Christmas Events. You can find the Men’s range at Very here.


I’d never thought of Very when it comes to shopping for my boys clothes, but I certainly will do from now on. Although they do sell various designer clothing for children, they also have their own V by Very range which is great quality at an affordable price. I loved this section of boys clothes by Joules. You can view the childrenswear here.


The Skin Doctors were also show casing their range of Cosmeceuticals. You can find the full range on the Very website here. The Skin Doctors had a Santa Sack Lucky Dip and the lovely women let both the boys pick one for me so I have Skin Doctors Instant Eyelift and Skin Doctors Zit Zapper to try out.

Illamasqua were also showcasing their products and also did a Make-up Demonstration. You can view the Illamasqua range on Very’s website here.


Lola Rose were also showing their beautiful range of jewellery. You can view the range here on the Very website.

The Goodie Bag

The goody bag included Skin Doctors collagen boosting night ampoules, Soul Beauty triple silicone sponge set, St Tropez gradual tan, W7 Very Vegan Eye Eco Eye Colour Palette, Boozi mango & ginger margarita lip balm, Gel Rocks by Elegant Touch, coconut tanning water by Utan & Tone, Fiorelli bracelet, Baylis & Harding midnight fig & pomegranate hand wash, Illamasqua Embellishing Eye Gel in broken gold, I-Art liquid eye colour, Gatineau Paris peeling expert gel exfoliant, Ultrasun shimmering sun lotion for sensitive skin and last but not least Bomb Cosmetics Dash away bath bomb.

Overview of my first blogging event.

Before the event I was a nervous wreck. What do I wear? Do I take the boys?

When I got to the event I was glad I had taken them with me as they distracted me from the anxiety. I’d decided to wear my Lipsy Eyelash snowflake Christmas jumper – from last year, skinny jeans and Ugg boots. I’d made a little more of an effort than usual. When I got to the event I felt a little under dressed surrounded by a lot of beauty and fashion bloggers that had clearly made a lot more effort than I had, this made me feel a little anxious, but all of the bloggers I spoke to were lovely regardless of what niche they blog about. The boys were a bit bored at the start, until they started posing with the mannequins, using the photo booth and found the buffet.

I’m glad I took them with me as although behaviour wasn’t great – apologies to fellow bloggers that attended if they photo-bombed your shots; they definitely broke the ice and got me out of my comfort zone and talking to more people.

Thank you Very for the invitation and I hope to attend future events and work with you again.

Black Friday

*This post contains affiliate links*

If you don’t know that today is Black Friday have you been hiding under a rock??? The vast majority of shops and retailers are having some form of Black Friday Event.

I’m going to link to some pages that I think will be useful to my readers and also share what I think are great deals!


Amazon have a so many Black Friday deals, it’s hard to pick a  few to share.

Black Friday Toy Deals with up to 50% off

Essentials probably aren’t on your mind for Black Friday but you could save a fortune.

I’ve just saved a fortune on our dog food which I usually from Amazon anyway. It usually varies in price between £20-£25 and it’s on offer at £15.50 BUT there’s also a subscribe and save offer which reduces the price to £14.73 and our dog food will automatically be ordered and delivered at that price every 3 months. There’s up to 40% off selected Pet Food.


You can view all of Argos’s Black Friday Deals Here.

One of the best deals I’ve spotted here is PS4 Slim Black 500GB Console Bundle with FIFA 18 and 2 additional games for £199.99.


B&M are offering 20% off all toys.


Groupon are offering up to 75% off in their Black Friday Event.

Muscle Foods

Muscle Foods have some great deals on at the moment. We will certainly be placing an order, their meat hampers are fantastic and last for ages! You can find their Black Friday Deals here.


Smyths have a download & print voucher £6 off when you spend £50 or £12 off when you spend £100 on their website and also lots of Black Friday Special Offers.

Toys R Us

Toys R Us have an up to half price sale.


Travelodge are offering 30% off selected stays when you use code ‘BLACKFRIDAY17’ at checkout. Code expires on Monday 27th November.


Very have their Black Friday Event with offers in all departments.

One of the best deals I have found and personally taken advantage of is this Tefal Actifry Plus at £84.99 from £209.99. We received an Actifry for Christmas a few years ago and it is fantastic.


If you use these offers feel free to pop back and share your bargain buys or if you’ve found a deal that I haven’t shared feel free to send me a comment or message and I’ll add it to the list.


Enjoy Shopping 🙂

Christmas Open Weekend at Inspirations Wholesale.

Inspirations wholesale Christmas BusyLazyMum

I heard of Inspirations Wholesale in Bromborough a long time ago and unfortunately never got round to popping in. When I found out about their Christmas open weekend via Facebook I knew this would be the perfect opportunity for me to pop in and have a nosey and I am so glad I did!I wasn’t quite sure where Inspirations was but found it relatively easily. I was shocked by the sheer size of the building! I wasn’t expecting a little shop but was expecting something less than half the size, it was huge!! We went in and they were offering drinks and cake for a donation to Macmillan Cancer Support which I thought was a brilliant idea!I love Christmas and love to make it special for our boys. I like to have themes when we decorate for Christmas and recent years have been quite bland. So I have been in search of some inspiration to make our first Christmas in our own home that extra bit special. Inspirations Wholesale have so many stunning themes I am stuck for choice!Inspirations wholesale Christmas BusyLazyMum

We went in and the boys were so excited to see all the trees and the colours. There was a wreath making display which Tristan watched eagerly and asked if we could make one. I promised to do one nearer Christmas so watch this space – I’m not very artistic so it might turn into an epic fail but it’s worth a try, and thanks to Inspirations we have an idea of where to start.

We wondered around the colourful displays and came to their Facebook frame competition, which there was a short queue for. The boys got involved and used the Christmassy props provided. Good luck to everyone that entered! The prize is a £50 gift voucher to spend in store. I love the elf hat Lewis is wearing its £9.99 + VAT and you can buy it here.

We then went for a wonder along the aisles where the non display items were and the boys started to get a bit bored. So we only had a short wonder and then left. I thought these elf signs were great and will 100% be adding one to our decorations this year. Which one though? Decisions Decision! You can buy them for £3.75+VAT here

The boys both loved the elf trees. Although Tristan said he loved the upside down tree too.  As the elf comes to stay with us throughout December we will probably be buying most of this range in the near future.

It’s safe to say that when it’s a bit closer to Christmas and my ‘Christmas is ages away’ Scrooge husband has found his Christmas spirit we will be returning and I shudder to think how much we will spend – not because it’s expensive because everything I saw was very reasonably priced, but because I will want to buy it all!

You can view some of Inspirations Wholesale stock on their website here and follow them on Facebook here.




Butlins Christmas Fantasy Weekend

We took advantage of The Sun Holidays earlier in the year and booked the Christmas Fantasy Weekend at Butlins Skegness for the 16th – 19th December. On top of the £9.50 per person we paid an extra £80 for entertainment passes, gas & electric.  In the spring we had been upgraded to Silver accommodation using The Sun Holidays; this time we were not.

Checking In

Check-in was relatively easy via a drive-thru check in. We had a ground floor apartment in Lagoon Bay, approximately 500 yards from an entrance to the skyline and approximately 800 yards from the beach.


Standard accommodation was very basic as was its cleanliness. The bedsheets had stains on, shower ceiling had dead flies on and there was dust and cobwebs on the ceilings. We didn’t expect standard accommodation to spotless, so this met our expectations. (We brought our  own sheets just in case).

All-inclusive Activities

The Butlins Fairground was great and we spent a lot of time here as the boys loved it. We went for a swim at Splash Waterworld twice whilst we were there, it was really good there were lots the boys could do but it was also very busy. We spent a lot of time in the arcades. The play areas kept the boys entertained when we stopped for a drink in one of the many restaurants and cafes. The beach was lovely and quiet. There were lots of photo opportunities around the site where the boys posed for photos.

Live Shows (all inclusive)

Each day there were different puppet shows in the Butlins Skyline Pavilion, there were quite short but great for young children with a shorter attention span. They got all the children involved with songs or ‘he’s behind you’ interaction.

Friday evening’s show was a magician which the boys loved.
On Saturday there was a pantomime called Aladdin rocks which was really good, they got all the audience involved and there was a little adult humour subtly thrown in.
Sunday afternoon there was wrestling in the pavilion, I was a little dubious about this as watching people get hit and thrown about isn’t something that interests me and I thought it might be sending the wrong messages to the boys. I think I was just being over sensitive though as they loved it and would excitedly cheer on the ‘good guy.’

Optional Extras

You could pay a little extra to play adventure golf, ten pin bowling, take a ride on the go karts and the aerial adventures. We didn’t use any of the extras this time as there were plenty of other things to do at Butlins that were all inclusive.. I did surprise Alan with a massage at The Spa and when we met up with him after he looked so much more relaxed – definitely money well spent.

Santa’s Grotto

We went to see Santa at his grotto in Butlins which was included in the price. We had been given a time slot when we checked in and this helped keep the queue at bay, there was a short wait but it would have been hectic if they’d done first come, first served. As we got to the front of the queue we told the elf that Tristan is dairy-free and he said that shouldn’t be a problem. Went off and came back and told us it was fine. We went in and saw Santa & Mrs Clause and we posed for a group photo taken by Mrs Clause. Tristan received a large bag of Haribo and Lewis received a selection box.

Ice Skating

Before this weekend I had never been ice skating as I’ve always had a fear of falling over and having my fingers chopped off by the blades. I know that probably sounds crazy but I have a something called hypersensitivity which is basically seeing the risks and the worst outcome and then being overprotective, so ice skating was a really big deal for me. Alan talked me into it and the boys were really excited when we walked past so I anxiously gave it ago. I wasn’t whizzing round the rink but I’m glad I gave it ago. The boys used penguin aids which were also a great cover for my inexperience on the ice.

Overall we had a great festive weekend, the boys had fun and we got to spend some much needed family time together. If your going to book a break with Butlins I would recommend going for silver or higher accommodation purely for the cleanliness.