Category Archives: Countrykids

Lazy Jacks on test in Death Valley

One of the great things about where we live is that we have three parks within easy walking distance. One’s the lovely Bute Park, alongside the River Taff, which is huge; one is the smaller Victoria Park, and the nearest one to us is Thompson Park. This last is the family favourite – although it doesn’t boast play equipment and ice cream stalls like the other two, it does contain the legendary (at least in Canton folklore) Death Valley!

Depending on which one of my kids you believe, it’s either named Death Valley because a small boy was once hunted down and killed by wolves there, or because certain death awaits anyone who ventures in after dark. Whichever it is, Death Valley has been the scene of lots and lots of fun, as well as ripped clothing, the occasional lost shoe,  a possible broken nose accompanied by two definite black eyes, and bumps, bruises and twisted ankles galore. When they go in, you never really know what they’ll come out with….except for one thing – and that’s mud, mud, glorious MUD. It’s not so bad this time of year but give it another couple of months when the ground’s been churned up by hundreds of exploring feet and we’re well into washing-machine-busting territory.

So all in all,  it seemed a good place to go to put our latest delivery of Lazy Jacks Clothing through its paces. We were lucky enough to review some gorgeous tops last year, and those lovely folk in the Lazy Jacks office are clearly still labouring under the delusion that someone actually reads this blog (shhhh) so they’ve kindly sent us some pieces from their latest catalogue too. My littlest boy received some trousers which – get this – have a MAGNIFYING GLASS POCKET! I kid you not – here, have a look!


Well, that’s him happy…and I’m happy too, because the trousers are hard wearing on the outside for all that Death Valley has to offer, but also soft and lovely on the inside for my youngest’s delicate legs (bless), with cute blue turnups to boot.


My girl-in-the-middle received a lovely long sleeved 2-in-one teeshirt – perfect for this time of year when it’s not quite snuggly hoodie weather, but not really warm enough for short sleeves. She loved it on sight – I thought she could do with a slightly smaller size so was going to exchange it but I was told in no uncertain terms that she was keeping it! She hasn’t really taken it off since. Here’s a picture of her tackling the climbing tree at the bottom of Death Valley…no, those sleeves didn’t stay white for long, but I’m pleased to report that like all Lazy Jacks gear this top washes really well.

IMG_3938 And my biggest boy received a very cool Grandad top – perfect attire for grubbing around looking for the remains of wolf-savaged small children. He was a bit wary at first – apparently it looks too much like one of my various navy-blue-striped tops (what? You don’t want to look like your ultra-stylish Mother? WHY ON EARTH NOT????) but once he’d put it on he decided that it looked different enough after all. And I have to say, though I may be biased, that it looks great on him, though it does make him look very grown up (sob).

IMG_3937Because I like to make reviews a good read as well as a straightforward product writeup,  I’m trying to think of a creative and interesting way to bring you the news that you’ve already figured out – which is that I’m more than happy with our Lazy Jacks clothes and would highly recommend them for design, quality and durability. But, creative and interesting be damned, perhaps I should just tell it like it is…here goes…ready now? Right….I’m more than happy with our Lazy Jacks clothes and would highly recommend them for design, quality and durability. There. Couldn’t have said it better myself. Oh, I did…twice…hmmm. Really, really got to put a stop to this blogging with gin.

Anyways, if you need more convincing, why not head over to the Lazy Jacks site and have a browse through their new Autumn/Winter goodies  (there’s some fab grownup clothes there as well by the way) – and you can of course keep up with the latest on FacebookTwitter and Pinterest, where you’ll find some much better photos than mine!

ps on that note, because I’m a rubbish photographer my children refuse to stand still and be photographed, I’ve included some catalogue images below for you.

**Disclaimer – we were kindly sent these items free of charge in exchange for an honest review**

Children’s casual trousers £25.99
2-in-1 Long Sleeved Tee £21.99
Boy’s Long Sleeve Grandad Top £21.99

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

Our summer of football

I wasn’t expecting the World Cup to make much difference to our Summer one way or the other, except for the Husband’s inevitable slump when England got knocked out. Yes, he’s a Welshman. Yes, he supports England at football, though never, ever at rugby. No, I don’t understand – apparently ‘it’s complicated’.

Anyway, complicated aside, all the world cup really meant for me was the opportunity to binge watch everything on my Netflix list in peace and quiet while the Husband watched the matches on the TV. And of course to get fleeced on the ubiquitous Panini stickers and Match Attax cards, not to mention deflecting the endless begging for Fifa 14 on the Wii.

And indeed all that did happen, as expected. What was a real surprise though was that along with all that, they seemingly couldn’t get enough of playing the game itself! Yes! With a real ball! In the fresh air! In teams! With vitamin-c packed oranges at half time! That’s, like, LOADS of good parenting points RIGHT THERE! *polishes halo*

As soon as school was out the three of them would head into the garden to play three-and-in. If the Husband was home, he was pressed into service for a two on two match (no, before you ask, my co-ordination skills are apparently not up to scratch – I was pretty quickly demoted to bringer of snacks). But to be honest I was happy watching – watching my biggest boy’s confidence in his ability improving day by day; watching my girl in the middle refusing to be outdone by the three boys, and watching my littlest boy learning that the world doesn’t stop when he’s not on the winning side. Took a while, that last one, mind.

It  won’t be long now until the shorter days put paid to pre-bedtime garden kickabouts, and of course the World Cup excitement has long since faded into the background. But for the moment, we’re squeezing as much fun as we can from our Summer of Football!

Throw in
You need a hi-vis for a throw-in you know.
Football in the garden
Spot the ball…


Football Skillz
We call her Golden Crocs.

I’m linking up with  #Countrykids with Coombe Mill – why not head over for more fun and frolics in the fresh air, and plenty of inspiration to enjoy the great outdoors!

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

Summer days, drifting away….

And…that’s a wrap! Yep, Summer’s over, school’s back, and my favourite month is under way! Though I’m a little sad to leave our Summer fun behind, to be honest.

A mixture of old favourites and new experiences this year – camping in Dartmouth and our week at Stepaside, near Tenby are regular fixtures; a weekend in Prague for the Husband and I – with no kids! – was an unexpected bonus; another new addition to the summer schedule was the Husband and kids meeting up with friends for a camping trip while both Mums went back to work (sob). Add into that spending three weeks working with 16 young people on a construction course (my job is ace sometimes!) and finally getting planning permission for the House Project and it really has been a completely packed – and very fun, summer! I really need to get to sorting out our photos at some point soon, in the meantime here’s a few of my favourites…

First camping breakfast of the year
On the boat to Dartmouth Castle
A secret spot near Dartmouth
My littlest boy and his Collection of Important Beach Finds
A waterfall we never knew existed, near Aberdare

There’s so many more, but I’m quite sure that you’ve probably reached your tolerance levels for averagely-instagrammed-and-not-too-identifable pictures of my kids in the sunshine so I’ll leave it there – for now!

Linking up with the lovely #countrykids folk at Coombe Mill – pop over and have a read about the outdoor fun and frolics of far more talented bloggers than me!

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall