hiplittleone

Apr 142019
 

Pan Macmillan Australia

While everyone has their eye on school holidays, Easter and ANZAC Day it is easy to forget about Mother’s Day, which is rapidly creeping up on us. With only four weeks to go it’s time to start shopping, dropping hints for and/or creating the perfect gift for the special mum in your life or even just yourself! Personally I find nothing warms the heart like a handmade treasure and this is one unique gift that is guaranteed to make any mother melt:

Whether you have a mum, mama, mother or ma, a grandma, nan, oma or nonna, I Love My Mum Because (RRP $14.99) is the cutest keepsake book for all those special ladies. Go grab your crayons, pencils and markers and get started…

‘I Love My Mum Because’ invites little artists to become little authors, using their creative skills to tell the world why they love their mother. Across 31 pages children are encouraged to celebrate mum in ‘activity book’ style with colouring in pages (draw a picture of you and mum, decorate flowers for your mum, trace your hand, show your feelings in colours), little puzzles (spot the mum, match the mother-baby shapes) and of course write sweet notes to/about your mum (write a wish for your mum, describe your mum). The end result is a sweet gathering of personal love notes for mothers and no two books will ever be the same, just like mothers are all different too.

Thanks to the sturdy hardcover this precious book is sure to stand the test of time and will still be treasured by mums years from now. I think it makes a perfect Mother’s Day gift or birthday present: a joy to make and a joy to receive. Hip tip: If you’re a little softie like I am, keep a tissue box on hand when you read because you’ll need it!

To find out more about Pan Macmillan, to take a closer look at ‘I Love My Mum Because’ by Petra James and Alissa Dinallo to order your favourite titles online visit www.panmacmillan.com.au.

For your chance to win 1 of 3 copies of I Love My Mum Because (RRP $14.99) hop on over to the Hip Little One Facebook page to enter. Good luck!

Apr 012019
 

In some less-than-fabulous situations it can be rather hard to try find anything positive, but I try anyway. A few weeks ago a mistake from an unexperienced hairdresser meant I had to return to the salon for a second 3-hour stint so the owner could (hopefully) correct their error as much as possible. Instead of focussing on the hair disaster I decided to stay upbeat, soak up the ‘bonus’ hours of quiet at the hairdresser the week after and settle into the chair with this exciting new Affirm Press read:

Like many other thrillers Eight Lives (RRP $32.99) starts with a death. In this case a dedicated and promising young doctor named David Tran is the unlucky one and you might think this book is just another search for a mysterious murderer. Think again…

Eight Lives combines suspense with science, you slowly get a (novice) understanding of the project David was working on and how his research ultimately led to his death. Don’t be scared by medical terms like mAbs, antibodies, a cytosine storm, hybridoma, immunology and other insider lingo, author Susan Hurley expertly talks you through it all and before you know it this medical thriller has you on the edge of your seat.

We delve deeper into David’s death, as seen through the eyes of five main characters. We discover how David, a former refugee, found his way to Australia and became a doctor in search of a life changing drug. We meet his assistant Rosa who watches his discovery take shape and knows all the fine details, his childhood friend and fellow doctor Miles who is forever in debt of David, his sister Ly who sees the little Vietnamese boy and loyal brother as well as the smart Australian doctor and Foxy, the man who looks after the rich and who is to help limit the PR damage David Tran’s death will cause. Each of the five characters plays a different role in Tran’s life, death and discovery and as the chapters continue the pieces of this complex puzzle are slowly falling into place…

I admit that initially I was a little overwhelmed by the scientific angle of this book, but I read on and loved how the suspense grew and simply had to know what happened! Every chapter you think that maybe you understand but the end still took me by surprise. Eight Lives is a fantastic thriller that was hard to put down.

To find out more about Affirm Press, to take a closer look at ‘Eight Lives’ by Susan Hurley and to order a copy online visit www.affirmpress.com.au.

For your chance to win 1 of 3 copies of ‘Eight Lives’ hop on over to the Hip Little One Facebook page to enter, good luck.

Mar 252019
 

Immunisations are never something I look forward to (especially when I have to take all six kids at once) but prevention is better than cure so it has to be done. On Saturday morning we checked into the GP surgery for the latest meningococcal jab and they all calmly did their duty without a squeak. Except for miss Hattie who made enough noise for all six of them.

I’ll be honest, in the lead up to our doctor’s appointment I had bribed the girls with a secret surprise sitting on our kitchen bench and they were super excited about unwrapping one of these adorable treasures once the job was done. HairDooz (ages 5+) are the cutest little dolls with big doos: smooth and shiny, buns and boofy, curly and colourful, plaits and ponytails, funky and fuzzy, quirky and classic… there is a perfect doo for every boo.

Carefully packaged in a blind bottle capsule you never know which HairDooz you get, which makes it extra fun. When you open your bottle and twist the salon door you will find your new boo waiting for you in her styling chair. Her unique doo smells super fruity and she even wears a hairdresser’s cape, my girls love giving their dolls makeovers with teeny hair ties and miniature brushes.

The girls particularly enjoyed taking their HairDooz along in the car, using the included suction cap to connect the salon seat to the car window. You can also stick your little stylista onto windows, mirrors, wardrobes and other suitable surfaces around the house. Just keep in mind that you need to slightly twist/screw the styling chair to pop it in and out of the suction cap/chair stand (our miss muscles Juliet learnt this the hard way).

If you are very lucky you’ll unwrap Skye with the Big Bow Ponydoo, a rare colour change HairDooz boo whose luscious locks change colour when you dip her doo in a nice warm bath. When you rins her strands under cold water the colour changes back, now that is clever. We haven’t found gorgeous Skye yet but I’ll let you know when we do (flu shots are around the corner so we might just have to adopt some more HairDooz!).

There are currently 24 different HairDooz to collect, you can view all the different girls, colours and hair styles in the Collector’s Guide inside the capsule and tick them off as your collection grows. You can find HairDooz right now at your local Target, Myer, Big W, Kmart, Coles and Woolworths store as well as leading toy retailers across Australia.

To find out more about HairDooz, to meet all the HairDooz and to locate a stockist near you visit www.hairdooz.net.

Mar 202019
 


©Disney. All Rights Reserved

The days are starting to get shorter and the nights are getting longer, the temperature is slowly dropping and leaves are starting to fall, big Disney fans will know that this can only mean one thing: Winter is on its way and so is Disney On Ice!

This year Disney On Ice is travelling the country with a chillingly (excuse the pun) magical show that is sure to give you goosebumps, and not just because of the cold. Disney On Ice celebrates Mickey and Friends presented by Feld Entertainment brings all your favourite Disney characters to life during a jam-packed show that will capture the hearts of young and old.

What can I say except “You’re welcome’ to join the adventure with Moana and Maui, discover true love with Anna and Elsa, jump in the toy box with Woody and his pals, experience the mystery of Fantasia, buckle up for an emotional roller coaster with Inside Out, travel the ocean with Dory and of course admire the dazzling outfits of all your beautiful Disney princesses Cinderella, Snow White, Jasmine, Rapunzel, Ariel and much much more.

Each year Disney On Ice entertains guests of all ages with a brand new and very spectacular performance and those who attend leave with precious memories to last a lifetime (be warned as Disney On Ice is quite addictive, once you have seen the show in all its glory you want to go back year after year!). Because the performers continuously move around on the ice all spectators get to share in the excitement no matter where they are seated, to determine your perfect spot you can view the venue map when booking your tickets online.

Your favourite Disney stars will put on their ice skates and slide onto the rink in Perth on May 31, 2019, and whirl their way past Adelaide, Wollongong, Canberra, Brisbane, Melbourne and Newcastle to make their final bow in Sydney on July 21, 2019. If you want to treat the kids to an amazing experience and be part of the Disney magic this year book your tickets now to avoid disappointment, seats are limited and shows sell out fast so be quick!

To find out more about Disney On Ice celebrates Mickey and Friends, to check out the tour schedule and to book your tickets online via Ticketek visit www.DisneyOnIce.com.au.

Perth – May 31 – June 3
Adelaide – June 7 – June 10
Wollongong – June 14 – June 16
Canberra – June 20 – June 23
Brisbane – June 28 – July 1
Melbourne – July 4 – July 8
Newcastle – July 12 – July 14
Sydney – July 17 – July 21

Mar 192019
 

If you were to take a peek in family homes across Australia you will be hard pressed to find a book shelf without a copy of Michael Rosen’s We’re Going on a Bear Hunt on it. For years this lovely picture book has been read, sung and played out in living rooms and libraries, bedrooms and cubby houses and many of us have our own special Bear Hunt memories. This year marks the 30th anniversary of We’re Going on a Bear Hunt and that’s a special milestone that should not go unnoticed:

To celebrate the big 30 in style Walker Books has organised the ultimate ‘We’re Going on a Bear Hunt’ competition for book loving families. Grab your phone/camera and share an image or video of you and your family sharing We’re Going on a Bear Hunt on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter, using the hashtag #happybirthdaybearhunt and share what you think makes We’re Going on a Bear Hunt special.

The winning family, as chosen by Walker Books Australia, will score an entire year of story times, that is 52 books handpicked for your family! Entries close March 31, 2019, check out the competition details here.

To find out more about Walker Book and to take a closer look at We’re Going on a Bear Hunt visit www.walkerbooks.com.au.

Thanks to our lovely friends at Walker Books two lucky Hip Little One readers will win a gorgeous ‘We’re Going on a Bear Hunt’ prize pack containing a copy of the book, a tote bag, an adorable ‘We’re Going on a Bear Hunt’ plush bear (not dangerous!) and a cute bear ear headband. For your chance to take home this beary cool stash hop on over to the Hip Little One Facebook page to enter.

Mar 172019
 

After several holidays to the Netherlands with our large family a long plane trip does not worry us anymore. By now I know exactly what to pack and what to do to make the journey as pleasant as possible for young travellers…

For our last European adventure in August we bought Ted the cutest GearZooz Lion & Mouse toy and it was a real hit. It’s colourful and fun, it makes music and moves and stimulates little brains, plus it is compact enough for a holiday backpack or nappy bag. After seeing how much he enjoyed playing with it I was determined to find some more GearZooz styles so I was super chuffed to stumble upon this awesome activity centre recently:

The GearZooz Gear Up & Go Activity Table (RRP $69.95, ages 18-36 months) by VTech is a great 2-in-1 toy designed with curious kids in mind. The chunky shapes are a great size for chubby toddler hands and the 30cm height is a great play height for our big boy Ted. This week Ted will be 18 months old, so he is at the perfect age and there is lots left to learn as he gets bigger. At the same time Hattie (3 years old) really enjoys it too, proving this toy is suitable for different ages and developmental stages.

On side one the Gear Up & Go Activity Table offers busy little bees loads to do and discover across five play modes. Kids can practise colours, learn to count, discover instruments and their sounds, sing songs and more, so they are not just playing but learning too! Switch between Learning Fun, Animal Jam Time, Instrument Fun, Concert Time or even play a Guessing Game: Can you find the green piano key? Can you find the number 3? Can you find the violin?

The 16 coloured mix and match gears can be placed in many different spots and, if you do it right, as you turn one the other gears will start spinning too. Picking up the gears, clicking them place and twisting and turning is a great fine motor skills exercise for small toddler hands.

Keep an eye out for the clever Smart Gear spot, if you place one of the interactive Smart Gear Animals on top it will tell the name of the animal and teach you some interesting animal facts eg. Aligators swim by sweeping their tail back and forth, Baby bears are called cubs, Elephants use their trunk to get food and water.

In a few simple steps the table can be transformed for a whole new way of creative play: turn up side two and test out the gear board. The gear board it a fantastic way to practise the cause and effect principle, develop prediction skills and work on strategic thinking: How does turning one gear affect the other gears? Can you place the gears in a way that you can make the whole series move? Maybe you can even make a specific shape?

To make sure you don’t lose any of the gears you can fix them safely on the activity table, click them on the gear board or secure them to the table legs. I just love that you can use the gears on all other GearZooz too for extended play and that all GearZooz toys are able to recognise the cute interactive Smart Gear Animals. So the bigger your GearZooz collection gets, the more different combinations and set-ups you can create.

VTech toys are available at major department stores, select online stores and independent toy retailers across Australia.

To find out more about GearZooz by VTech, to browse the range and to locate a stockist near you visit www.vtech.com.au.