Tech21 Patriot iPhone Case Review and Giveaway

Any parent will know how important it is to protect your phone with small children around. My phone is not only important to me as a blogger – with social media and emails constantly at hand, but it’s also a source of entertainment for the children, a way to record all those everyday moments with the camera and a way to contact anyone I need to in an emergency.

So when Tech21 offered to protect my phone for me, with one of their many gadget cases, I knew it would not only make my phone safer but it would also change the way I use my phone going forward too. I chose the Patriot iPhone case for my iPhone 5S – mainly because I liked the colour – and waited for it to arrive.



The Patriot Case was really simple to put straight onto my phone. It incorporates an inner case with built in screen protector and then a FlexShock rubber feeling outer case giving all round protection. The case is designed to withstand any impact – especially when dropped which is perfect for when the children are using it. I now have the peace of mind that they won’t damage my phone and so let them play with it and take pictures a lot more than I used to.


The case is also dust proof and splash proof with covers over all the phone’s outlets which are easy to move to the side to plug in the phone charger or headphones but keep everything really water tight and safe when out and about.



The screen protector is my favourite feature as I am used to using stick on screen protectors that are always full of bubbles and tony specs of dust. This screen protector sits completely over the screen but isn’t stuck to it and gives really good coverage, keeps my phone as intuitive as without a screen protector and feels nice to use too.


The Patriot case is a great addition to my phone. It’s easy to hold and stays in your hand well with the matt feeling of the external case. It’s chunky and robust but fits in well with family life and although it took me a few hours to get used to it I now can’t imagine my phone without the case on it. I love knowing that my phone is protected in any situation.


The Tech21 Patriot Case also comes with a belt clip to keep your phone attached to you at all times. This is robust and hard wearing as well as easy to fit onto the main phone case. It’s a great addition to the case and so useful too.



The Patriot case is just one of Tech21’s vast range of covers for not only mobile phones but also tablets and laptops – making Tech21 the perfect place to look for protection for any gadget. I have teamed up with Tech21 to give away a phone cover to one lucky reader. If you would like to be in with the chance of winning a phone case of your choice just complete one or more entries on the Rafflecopter below. Good luck!

The Tech21 Patriot Case has an RRP of £39.95

Don’t forget to check out our other giveaways over on the giveaways page!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
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Disclosure: I was sent the above case for the purpose of this review however all opinions are my own.

Review: Orchard Toys – Giant Railway

Little Man loves nothing more than trains. He is obsessed with railways and stares in glee every time he sees a real life train so when Orchard Toys sent us their Giant Railway jigsaw puzzle to review I knew it would be a hit.


The Giant Railway consists of 22 jigsaw pieces which all have a section of track on them. They vary in size as well as shape – some being straight track, others curved track and some the stoppers you get at the end of a piece of track.


As well as having a lovely track design, Giant Railway also has images of trains, carriages and train stations on the pieces as well as lots of things next to the track – animals, signals etc. The Giant Railway has so much to look at and if that wasn’t enough it also comes with four stand up characters that you can use to add a third dimension to the jigsaw – although Little Man has also enjoyed using his own trains to move around the track too.


LP and Little Man loved putting the jigsaw together and were both intrigued and slightly confused that the track didn’t have one set way of being put together – they could literally make a different track system each time they played with the Giant Railway. There are also places where a road crosses over the track making it easy to use the Giant Railway in conjunction with the Giant Road jigsaw – which is now firmly on Little Man’s Birthday list!


Little Man loves jigsaws and he loves trains and since Giant Railway has arrived he has had so much fun putting the track together, taking it apart, making it again and when he is finally happy with it he makes his trains go around the track, stopping at the stations and having chats with the other trains in the images as they pass each other.


Giant Railway is so much more than a jigsaw and a must for any train loving child. Each piece is really thick and durable with a wipe clean finish. It also comes complete with a really well made storage box – something I am used to now with all Orchard Toys games.

Giant Railway has an RRP of £13.95

Disclosure: We were sent the above product for the purpose of this review however all opinions are my own.

The Beginning of Us – Laura’s Story

The Beginning of Us - A Blog Series

Another week and another Beginning of Us. This instalment comes from Laura over at Dear Bear and Beany. Laura talks about all aspects of busy family life with two children and you can find her over on Facebook and Twitter too.

Here’s Laura with her story…

Grab yourself a cuppa and take a seat, the story of Andy and I getting together is a bit of a rollercoaster…

We met in 2002, when Andy joined my team at work and I was his boss… Some people say we have come full circle… Andy tells me that he liked me from day one, he can remember what I wore to work, my favourite baguette that I bought all the time and that I was grumpy in the mornings! It’s a good job we are married now, otherwise I may be calling the stalker police!!

However, whilst of course I remember Andy, it’s for different reasons. He was very good at his job, he was easy to manage and he always hit his targets, all things that made me happy as a manager! At that moment in our lives that is how we stayed, manager and employee!

We both went on to get different jobs and Andy went off and lived his life and I lived mine. We would occasionally bump into each other and we would always say Hello, but that was it for many years.

Then six years ago on a cold night in November everything changed, we were both out in our local town, in the same pub and we got talking. We were both single and seven years after we first met, Andy finally plucked up courage to ask me out on a date. Four days later he picked me up and took me to a village a few miles away for a drink and we have never looked back.


It was our time…

We were both in the same place in our lives and from that moment we were together. Andy proposed seven weeks later on a snowy walk, which surprised some people, but the people closest to me know that I am not an impulsive person and they were really happy that I had finally met my ‘happy ever after’.


We didn’t stop there, seven months later we sold my house that we were living in and moved into a house that we bought together. Three months later we got married on a gorgeous autumnal day in November…eleven months after our first date… eight years after we first met!


We welcomed our first daughter, Alice in 2012 and two years later our little Holly arrived to complete our family.

All that is left to say is… it was worth the wait!!


Thanks so much for sharing your story Laura – it definitely sounds like it was worth the wait and sometimes, when you know, you know – even when it sounds quick to other people!

You can read more Beginning of Us stories over on the Beginning of Us page and if you would like to feature in the series please do get in touch!

Planning a Week in Scotland

At the weekend we are going on a very special holiday – a week, and an extra weekend, in Scotland! When LP started school we planned to make the most of the family time we had together and I realised we should try and plan as much into the school holidays as possible so we decided a few months ago to go to Scotland to visit lots of friends and to see a part of the UK that we haven’t really experienced before.

So on Saturday we are driving up to the Lake District to spend the weekend with our lovely friends over at Mental Parentals. We’ll have a stop off en route, probably a National Trust property and will then get to spend two nights with one of our favourite families.


After that we drive to our holiday accommodation in Scotland on the Monday. We’re staying at Forbes of Kingennie near Dundee which looks absolutely beautiful and will be there until the Friday. During our stay we are visiting a lovely friend of mine who moved back to Scotland about 18 months ago and who we don’t get to see often enough. I cannot wait to catch up with her and her beautiful kids.


We’re also having a day with Sarah from Toby Goes Bananas who I have met a couple of times at bloggy things but it will be lovely to meet her children – and introduce them all to LP and Little Man.

After that we have one more full day in Scotland that I think we’re going to use to visit Edinburgh Zoo as the children really love seeing animals and a zoo is always a great day out but it really is weather dependent!

At the end of our week we’ll be driving further into Scotland to visit Pamela and her gorgeous family over at Life with Munchers. I’ve heard so much about her home – and her family – and I can’t wait to see them all. We’re staying there overnight before heading home.


The drive home takes 10 hours so we’ve decided to stop off for the night near Manchester to break up the journey and will be planning a couple of stop offs – probably more National Trust places – along the route on both Saturday and Sunday.

We should be home late on Sunday afternoon ready for work and school again the next day. Phew! That was exhausting just writing about it. I cannot wait for such a full week as a family and also to catch up with lots of friends – mostly who I have met through blogging. I say it all the time – blogging has brought me so much but especially awesome friends – that live just so far away! I cannot wait to see them all.

Review: Andy’s Amazing Adventures Magazine

LP and Little Man love magazines, especially when they feature characters from their favourite TV shows. We were lucky enough to be sent the first issue of Andy’s Amazing Adventures magazine just before it’s official release today and the children were excited the minute they saw Andy on the front cover!


Andy’s Amazing Adventures magazine is based on the popular Cbeebies shows – Andy’s Wild Adventures, Andy’s Dinosaur Adventures and the forthcoming Andy’s Prehistoric Adventures. It comes with a free gift – the first issue has a great set of toy dinosaurs with it to go with the magazine’s overall dinosaur theme.


Throughout the magazine there is so much to do – a hat and gizmo to make, stories to read, things to learn and activities to complete. There’s even colouring in, drawing spaces and a whole sheet of stickers – LP and Little Man’s favourite things!


LP and Little Man have both loved reading through Andy’s Amazing Adventures. They both love dinosaurs although I think even a child that isn’t overly into dinosaurs would still love the magazine as it just has so much to do within it’s pages.


From a parent’s perspective I love how educational Andy’s Amazing Adventures magazine is. There are lots of facts and snippets of information put across in a really fun way. Each page is crammed with illustrations and things to look at and it has kept the children amused for hours. I love to know that when I buy a magazine it will be well read and will give us value for money. Andy’s Amazing Adventures has done just that.


Both LP and Little Man love the magazine and the added bonus of the dinosaur toys have turned out to be a new favourite to play with for Little Man. For just £2.75 an issue I think this is a great value magazine and would suit children of most ages.


Disclosure: We were sent the above magazine for the purpose of this review however all opinions are my own.