Monday, 23 March 2015

Disney Cinderella from Ravensburger

This puzzle will be loved by little girls everywhere. It’s Disney Cinderella. 



This has 100 pieces and the pieces are big too. The Cinderella puzzle shows various scenes from the brand new Cinderella 2015 movie. It shows Cinderella as a poor servant girl, at the ball and with her Prince Charming. It also shows scenes of the fairy godmother and the wicked stepmother and stepsisters. All surrounded by a magical butterfly fairytale background. 



Me, Jordanna and Izebella completed this puzzle first time within 20 minutes. The puzzle pieces are made especially for certain ages (6-9 years) both in number of pieces and images. This puzzle is specially designed for those 6 and over. Jordana was able to put many pieces together herself with a little help from me and a lot of messing about from Izebella. 




This beautiful Disney Cinderella puzzle is also available to buy on AMAZON for £7.99.

More information on all the Ravensburger puzzles and games can be found on their website

Review by Bizzimummy

Friday, 20 March 2015

REVIEW: “TRAVEL SHELVES” 9/10

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Publisher: Ravensburger (Germany), published Fall 2014
Title:  “Travel Shelves”, Artist: Aimee Stewart, 2000 pieces 
OUR RATING: 9/10
With three new Aimee Stewart’s coming out from Ravensburger in 2015, it was past time to do last fall’s 2000 piece “Travel Shelves”.
Box Quality:
As always the Ravensburger box is sturdy and attractively designed. The back is a generic one, as shown below:
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Sides:
The sides of the box show the image, Ravensburger logo, and piece count. Unfortunately, only one side has the name of the puzzle and artist.
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Inside:
Inside the box is a bag with the puzzle pieces (in excellent condition, no damage, puzzle dust, or unseparated pieces). The only other thing in this Ravensburger box is a ‘guarantee’ sheet for missing pieces. Some Ravensburgers contain more goodies in the box, but not this one.
The Image:
Artist Aimee Stewart has done a number of these fantasy “shelf” puzzles with different themes. Two new ones from Ravensburger for 2015 are “Heroes and Heroines” (with famous literary couples) and “Fantasy Voyage” (science fiction/adventure stories).
“Travel Shelves” features a world travel theme with various travel-themed books and sections of the image representing different world locations.
I was immediately attracted to the color and detail in this image and the exotic travel theme. It’s also nice that it comes in 2000 pieces.
(Click on any of the images in this review for a closer look.)
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Puzzle Quality:
You can see my Ravensburger brand comparison here.  To sum: Ravensburger is our highest ranked brand. The pieces are good-sized and thick and the image reproduction is excellent. The pieces have a grid cut, but there’s a nice variety of piece shapes. You never think a piece fits where it does not. And Ravensburger’s “soft click technology” gives a nice solid feeling when two pieces interlock.
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Above: America as represented by San Francisco and sunflowers.
Assembly:  
This puzzle took a good amount of time of assemble given the 2000 piece size, about five evenings, more than twice as long as a 1000 piece takes me. It’s not particularly difficult since there are plenty of colors and shades of each color, so you can put together about 80% of the puzzle by referencing the box lid. There are some darks (especially the brown shelves) that took a bit more trial and error at the end.
It’s fun to see the book titles and little areas of detail as the image is completed.
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Above France and Great Britain.
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Above: Egypt provides some nice golden yellows.
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Above: South America and SE Asia
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Above: The Taj Mahal, elephants, and Gods in India
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Above: More USA and Germany in blue. I like the ‘sand’ falling down from the Egypt shelf above.
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Above: The Russian Kremlin provides some orange to the composition.
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Above: Japan–the cherry blossoms are easy to see on the pieces.
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Above: Italy features Venice and the Tower of Pisa.
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Above: And here’s our book fairy!
Conclusion:
If you like bigger puzzles, this 2000 piece Ravensburger is definitely worth the purchase.
Where to find:

Monday, 16 March 2015

Disney Sofia Palace Game


Up until now we haven’t really played board games with LP. She plays with toys, does drawing and crafts and builds with lego but board games were something we didn’t know when to introduce. When we were sent the Disney Sofia Palace Game to review I thought it looked like a great introduction to board games for LP.
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The game is fairly basic – as you would expect with it being aimed at ages three and above. It has a simple board made of two pieces of card which is brightly coloured and lovely to look it. It also includes four Sofia playing pieces and plastic stands to help them move around the board. The dice has different colours or an amulet symbol on each side and there are a number of amulet shapes with pictures of Sofia’s friends on one side.
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The aim of the game is to take it in turns to roll the dice and move to the next of that colour space on the board. If you roll and get the amulet you pick an amulet card and place it on the space that has the same one of Sofia’s friend on it. When you get to that space you can then pick up the amulet and treasure it until the end of the game or the amulets run out.
LP loved rolling the dice – it isn’t something she’s ever really done before and she quickly picked up that she could move to the colour that she rolled although when she realised that she could take an amulet card if she rolled the amulet she quickly lost interest and only cared about finding all of Sofia’s friends on the amulet cards!
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This basically shows LP’s age – it’s a great first board game but with LP being only three and a half she does get distracted easily. I think if we keep playing the game over the coming months LP will eventually be able to play the game all the way through and make it to the palace! For now, she’s happy playing snap with the amulets and characters on the board so it has helped her matching skills massively.
The Disney Sofia Palace Game has an RRP of £9.99

Wednesday, 11 March 2015

BEST OF BRITISH #12 – THE COUNTRY PARK

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Publisher: Ravensburger (Germany), published Feb 2015
Title:  “Best of British #12: The Country Park”, Artist: Geoff Tristram, 1000 pieces 
OUR RATING: 10
I love the “Best of British” series because they’re both humorous cartoon puzzles and British/Anglophile puzzles at once. And of course, the artwork by Geoff Tristram (see our interview with Geoff here) is always clean, creative, and funny.
Box Quality: (10/10)
The box gets a perfect score. You can see the front above. As always, Ravensburger boxes are high quality, thick, and with excellent graphic design.
The back of the box, shown below, is a generic Ravensburger back. However, this is compensated for by the goodies inside.
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Sides:
The sides of the box are really great for shelving, though I would have liked to have seen the series logo “Best of British” and the number (#12) on the sides as well, so you could line up the series and see the order at a glance.
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Inside:
This box scored so highly because it comes with lots of goodies. There’s a sheet on the “Best of British” series, one on the “What If?” series, plus a small color catalog and a Ravensburger warranty slip.  Very nice!
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Puzzle Quality: (10)
You can see my Ravensburger brand comparison here.  This is our highest ranked brand. Though the puzzle cut is a standard grid, which I don’t like as well as a random cut, there’s a wide variety of piece shapes, never confusion over whether a piece fits or not, thick pieces, a special ‘soft click technology’ fit, and a matte, non-glare finish.
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Click on the picture above for a close-up of the piece shapes
The Image: (10)
Well, I love the Best of British series in general (you can see them all here). I have them all and they’re fun to collect. I particularly like this scene because I love walking and hiking so this park image is right up my alley. There’re lots of little jokes throughout the image like the names of the towns, the clueless bird watchers, etc. As always, Geoff Tristram has a very clean and crisp style and good use of color.
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Assembly:  (10)
This is a very easy puzzle, but sometimes that’s just what the doctor ordered, especially after finishing something large and complicated. This is an excellent image for a puzzle because there’s very little space where there isn’t something unique going on. You always know where a piece goes. I like the colors on the clothing, the lake, the fence, and other details around the scene that spread out the visual interest.
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Conclusion:
If you like cartoon puzzles, give the “Best of British” series a try. This is a good one to start with. If you already collect the series, you’ll be very pleased with the new addition. Highly recommended!
Review by Jigsaw Junkie 

Monday, 9 March 2015

Ravensburger Colourful Selection Jigsaw Review

I was recently sent this lovely Colourful Selection jigsaw from Ravensburger, to review. Full of different patterns and pictures it really appealed to me. Its always nice looking at pretty things isn’t it?
Jigsaw review
I do like a bit of a challenge when doing jigsaws, and I actually thought this one would be easy, but I was wrong! While not as difficult as some, it certainly wasn’t easy, so it was a great puzzle to relax with of an evening.
As always with Ravensburger the puzzle was great quality and fitted together nicely. The pieces were chunky enough that they wouldn’t easily get bent and included a range of different shapes.

Monday, 2 March 2015

The Gruffalo Puzzles (2 x 12-Piece) by Ravensburger

To celebrate World Book Day we were sent this new Gruffalo puzzle set from Ravensburger.
It's two bright and colourful high quality Gruffalo puzzles are inspired by the Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler's wonderful book and designed especially for children aged 3 years and over. 


There's no such thing as a Gruffalo? Find out how the Gruffalo is ready to scare the Fox, Owl and Snake in the deep dark scary wood with these great looking puzzles.



An excellent puzzle set perfect as a gift this World Book Day (5th March 2015)


Available from Amazon

Wednesday, 25 February 2015

Alphablocks Giant Floor Puzzle

I love Alphablocks for encouraging phonics learning with my children. They’re familiar with the show from watching CBeebies so seeing the characters on a puzzle immediately appealed to them.
If you’re not familiar with the Alphablocks, they are a set of 26 characters – one per letter of the alphabet, each taking on their own personality. For example T is often tutting and making the sound t, t, t.. and also likes to drink tea. These personalities help children to associate the letter sounds with each letter.
Ravensburger alphablocks giant floor puzzleThe Alphablocks giant floor puzzle has 24 pieces which are all a nice big size. I find this larger puzzle format is great when the children want to work on it together, since they can all get down on the floor and sit around the puzzle together, and these large pieces also last really well when handled by young children.
Ravensburger alphablocks giant floor puzzleThe puzzle is bright and appealing, and features all of the Alphablocks in order from A to Z.
All of the children enjoyed recognising the letters and matching them up but this puzzle is particularly suited to my 3 and 5 year olds who are in nursery and reception and are working on their letters and early reading skills at the moment. It’s definitely a fun and simple way for them to get in some extra letter practice at home during their play time.
Ravensburger alphablocks giant floor puzzleThe pieces fit together well and are easy to handle. I always find the quality of Ravensburger puzzles to be good and they last well.
Ravensburger alphablocks giant floor puzzleThis Alphablocks giant floor puzzle is a great addition to our playroom and is one that we will return back to often. It would be ideal for any child from about 2.5-5 to help support them in learning letter sounds, as well as general cognitive development, spacial awareness and all of the other skills that can be developed by playing with puzzles.
Review by In The Playroom