Showing posts with label Easter. Show all posts

Things To Do In The North West This Easter

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The kids have only been back at school for a few weeks but it won't be long until they are off again for Easter break. Last Easter we were in lockdown in the UK however this year although some things are not fully open yet, restrictions are easing and there are some nice activities to keep us busy in the North West.

illuminated rainbow

River Of Light
Liverpool Waterfront

The River of Light will commence one year on from the day the UK went in to its first lockdown. The River of Light trail will light up Liverpool's Waterfront for a total of 14 nights from Tuesday 23rd March to Monday 5 April. Local residents can explore the free River of Light Trail free of charge. 

There is a total of 11 illuminated artworks in various locations across the city's waterfront. You can view the trail at any time throughout the day however the artworks will be only be lit from 6pm - 10.30pm each night. 

In total the River of Light trail covers 2km and is a full walking loop so there is no set start or finish point. Covid-safe measures will be in place and everyone is required to follow government guidelines so that the trail can be enjoyed by all. 

To see a full list of installations head to visitliverpool.com/riveroflight and for a full list of FAQ's you can head to Visit Liverpool.

Easter Special flyer

Social Kids - The Parking Lot Easter Breakout
Speke Hall Ave, Speke, Liverpool L24 1YD

The Parking Lot Social’s Easter Breakout is perfect to get the kids away from their screens and to enjoy lots of Easter fun. The Parking Lot Social’s Easter Breakout DJ will occupy you for a full 90 minutes including a silent disco, car-a-oke, an interactive quiz, party bingo & lots more.

One hour before the party starts the warm up DJ/MC will host some music, fun and games to get everyone in the mood to party.

The Parking Lot Social’s Easter Breakout tickets are available to buy for both the 17th and 18th April. 

Saturday 17th April 
Gates Open 11am - Pre-show with a live DJ to get you settled in, and hyped up.
Show Starts 12pm - Let the party commence!
End Time 1:30pm approx

Sunday 18th April 
Gates Open 2:15pm - Pre-show with a live DJ to get you settled in, and hyped up.
Show Starts 3:15pm - Let the party commence!
End Time 4:45pm approx

Easter Eggs in a basket

Easter Trail at Speke Hall
The Walk, Speke, Liverpool, L24 1XD

Explore the gardens and park at Speke Hall on their Easter Trail. Complete all the activities at the 10 trail points along the way and have lots of fun.  

To help you along the way you can purchase a trail pack which costs £3 on top of the general admission cost to enter Speke Hall. 

Each trail pack includes an activity sheet and  pencil to help you complete and a chocolate egg or allergen free reward.

The trail is available Wednesday 31st March to Sunday 11th April (except Tuesday 6th April) 10.30am – 5pm. Tickets for the Easter Trail are available to purchase on the day however you do need to book your tickets for Speke Hall in advance and tickets for the Easter period will go on sale on Friday 26th March.

Family Welly Walks

The Storybarn – Strolling into Spring
Calderstones Mansion House, Calderstones Rd, Liverpool L18 3JB

This Easter enjoy the scenery and explore Calderstones Park on a Spring Welly Walk.  Make sure you bring all five senses with you so you can enjoy and play games, listen to stories and even create your own.

The Spring Welly Walks will last a hour-long and will take place outdoors. You can't rely on the great British weather so make you dress appropriately and prepared.  The Storyhunter will be waiting for you on the steps of the Mansion House.

Best suited to children aged 4 - 8 but there’ll be fun for the whole family.

Tickets are available to purchase in advance and £4 each for both and adults and children. Under 1's go free. 

Percy pushing a wheelbarrow

Percy the Park Keeper - The Secret Path in the Gardens
Tatton Park, Knutsford, Cheshire, WA16 6QN (Sat Nav WA16 6SG)

Head to Tatton Park to join Percy the Park Keeper and his animal friends on a Spring adventure.  The family trail will take you inside Tatton Park’s gardens. Follow the pathways and help Percy along the way to take care of nature and wildlife. Why not stop off for a selfie at Percy’s potting shed, here you can enjoy the all the sights and smells of spring. Can you find all of Percy's animal friends along the way? Once you have finished collect your Easter chocolate treat and meet Percy too.

Percy The Park Keeper - The Secret Path in the Gardens trail is available from 2nd April - 5th April for Easter however the trail will continue through to the 13th June.

The trail is available 10am - 6pm (last entry 5pm).
Garden entry is priced at £8 per adult, £6 per child, National Trust members go free (but you must still book a timed ticket to visit). £1 per child for Percy the Park Keeper’s garden trail sheets (including NT members,

I will add to this post if more days out / Easter themed activities pop up.


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Gift Guide | Easter

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Disclosure - We were gifted products for the purpose of this post. All thoughts, opinions and photographs are our own. 

If you are looking for some Easter gift ideas this year then I have popped a few of our favourites into our Easter Gift Guide.
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Beauty and the Beast Panto at Epstein Theatre

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Disclosure - We were invited to watch Beauty and the Beast for the purpose of this review. 

When I was younger it was a Christmas tradition of ours to go to the pantomime. We would make a whole day of it by going to see Father Christmas, out for our tea and then an evening at the Pantomime. When I heard about the Epstein Theatre hosting an Easter pantomime I thought it was a little strange because I have always associated pantomime with Winter and Christmas time. However since I have been an adult and a mummy I have only ever been the panto once, a few years ago. I had forgotten just how good they are. I love everything about pantomimes, the 'he's behind you' and 'oh no he isn't..." Its a great family day out so even though its springtime and not a Christmas tree or fairy light in sight we headed into Liverpool to enjoy the show. 

beauty and the beast pantomime advert

Although I have been up and down Hanover Street many times I have never noticed the Epstein Theatre. I actually googled it before we went and read it has been open since 1913. There is just a doorway on the corner of the street and once you go up the spiral staircase you are greeted by a truly authentic theatre and auditorium. It really is a hidden beauty. 

Beauty and the Beast was the Easter pantomime and I recognised the names of a few of the cast. Alison Crawford as Belle and Ritchie Neville as Anton ( Gaston from the Disney version of the movie). As the stage was so small I was unsure how the this would work as there was a large ensemble of children and young adults as well as the seven main cast.

beauty and the beast pantomime
Our seats were centre to the stage and we had a great view. After looking round it was obvious that all seats had a great view and the theatre is very intimate and cosy. 

Unfortunately John and little J were unable to attend so it was just big J and I. We thoroughly enjoyed it. The casting was perfect. Belle (Alison) has a lovely voice and I remembered her from the TV programme Grease is the word. Ritchie (Anton) is from the newly reunited 5ive. I am still a huge fan of 5ive and have seen them live twice over the last few years after their 'Big Reunion' I think he played the part perfectly and had me laughing every time he came on stage. He didn't even need to speak just his walk and mannerisms had me giggling. 

As expected there was a bad guy ( or in this panto it was a girl) Countess Champagne and a panto dame, Miss Dolly Doughnut. The countess has an amazing voice and one of the highlights for me was her performing 'A spell on you.' Another highlight was Miss Dolly Doughnut, very very funny and I loved the innuendos and adult humour. Big J is old enough to understand a few and I found him laughing to himself.

The story pretty much followed that of the Disney film although it was the Countess who had cursed Prince Pierre to look like a beast as he would not marry her. She was the perfect panto villain with an amazing voice. Anton spent the entire performance trying to woo Belle although as we all know she falls in love with the beast. Dolly Doughnut was the Beasts cook and had me laughing throughout. 
Loopy Louis was one for the kids. He was the village idiot and was in love with Belle. He threw sweets into the audience and every time he arrived on stage the kids had to shout 'Bonjour Louis'.

The second half saw the story come to a halt as the cast sang a 'If I was not in pantomime...then I would rather be' song. This saw Anton and Dolly Doughnut use water pistols to squirt the audience. We actually got soaked as we were in the firing line although big J thought this was hilarious. 

There were a few technical hitches especially regarding the microphones but they were rectified quickly and I'm sure these little hiccups will be sorted out for future performances. 

Afterwards we had a very brief meet and great with the cast. I was really looking forward to having a photo with Ritchie although they were called away quite quickly but I assume they were tired and needed a rest before the next performance later on.

Overall we had a really good time and although I thought a Easter pantomime was slightly strange  it was thoroughly enjoyable.

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Mr Tumble's Circus Is Coming To Town

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I think if you are a regular reader you will now that we are a huge CBeebies fan and Justin Fletcher / Mr Tumble is a favourite of ours. We recently reviewed his new album and little J loves it.
Last year at Lollibop Justin announced that he was going on tour in 2015 and I was so excited as I knew little J would be a little bit older and would appreciate the show a lot more than he did at Lollibop.
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Alternative Easter Gifts

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When it comes to Easter I honestly feel sick sometimes with just how much chocolate we have in the house. Daddy, Big J and Little J love it but for me I would prefer to leave the chocolate in the shop where it belongs. 
The more chocolate we have the less I eat so it does wonders for my diet I suppose. If like me you don't like too much chocolate or prefer to give an alternative Easter gift check out my recommendations below.
Available now from George at Asda stores nationwide, the adorable T-shirt pictures Tatty Teddy wearing bunny ears and surrounded by Easter eggs.

RRP £5

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Bake A Cake For Mother's Day

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Disclosure - This is a collaboration

When it comes to Mother's Day I am a little old fashioned. I don't like expensive gifts, cards or anything else really that costs too much. For me I love something personal and if possible home made. I think there is nothing better than getting a home made gift from your little ones. They have put thought, time, love in to it and that is the best gift of all.

As little J has started to enjoy baking I am hoping this year he will make my favourite cake perfect for Mothers Day and Easter time, Simnel Cake. 

For those that would like to get busy in the kitchen for Mother's Day check out this delicious recipe.

simnel cake
250g mixed dried fruit (a mixture of sultanas, currants, raisins and candied mixed peel)
1 orange, zested and juiced
500g pack marzipan
250g pack butter, softened
200g light brown soft sugar
4 eggs, plus 1 beaten to glaze
175g plain flour
100g ground almonds
1 lemon, zested
2 tsp mixed spice
1 tsp vanilla extract
100g glacé cherries, halved
3 tbsp apricot jam

Pre heat the oven to 150C/130C fan/gas 2. In a bowl place the mixed dried fruit, orange juice and zest. Then you will need to add 2 tbsp water. Next you will need to cover the mixture and pop in to the microwave 2 mins. The mixture then needs to be left so it can cool down completely. If you do not have access to a microwave then you can heat in a pan on a very low heat,  stirring now and then until the liquid has been absorbed and leave to cool.

Roll out approx 1/3 of the marzipan and now you can use the base of your 20cm cake tin as a template to cut out a circle. Set aside any offcuts and 2/3's of the marzipan for later. Next you will need to line your cake tin with butter and a double layer of parchment. 

Place the butter and sugar in a bow and beat together until creamy. Now you can add the eggs, flour, almonds, baking soda, lemon zest, mixed spice and vanilla. You will need to mix until well combined. Add your cooled soaked dried fruit and fold in the cherries.

To make the bottom layer of your cake you will need to scrape half the cake mixture into the tin. Top with the disc of marzipan, then the remaining cake mixture, and level the top with a spatula. Bake for 2 hrs. Check it’s cooked by inserting a skewer to the centre of the cake, if any wet mixture clings to the skewer, return to the oven for another 10 mins, then check again. Cool in the tin for 15 mins, then turn out onto a wire rack and leave to cool completely.

Brush the top of the cake with apricot jam. Roll out half of the remaining marzipan and use the base of the cake as a template to cut out another disc. Place it on top of the cake and crimp the edges, if you like. Roll the remaining marzipan into 11 equal-sized balls for the apostles. Brush the marzipan with beaten egg and arrange the apostles in a circle on top around the outside, and brush them with a little egg too. Put under a hot grill for a minute or two until just starting to caramelise – be very careful as the marzipan will burn easily. Leave to cool and wrap a ribbon around the cake, if you like. Will keep for up to a week in a sealed tin

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#Win a Me To You Tatty Teddy T-shirt

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This Easter I have been browsing for alternative gifts that can be given instead of chocolate. 
I have come across some lovely ideas including this gorgeous Me To You Easter T-Shirt.
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