We are two mums and two toddlers, Cal and Edie, (two dads and new baby Elliott as well) living in Ireland, with a whole world of fun things to see and do.


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Shape - A Film About Design

Comissioned by Pivot Dublin with Dublin City Council, MakeShapeChange “is a project to get young people thinking about how the world is made around them and where design fits in.” Written by Scott Burnett, directed & designed by Johnny Kelly and produced by Ali Grehan, the short film is a prompt for children to think about their world and how design makes a real difference in people’s lives. Watch it above and check out the excellent detail on the website here.

Airfield Awakens

We’ve always been big fans of Airfield farm in Dundrum and were thrilled when it reopened late last year. It has been visibly developing over the last few months and had its official reopening this week. We headed along this weekend for “Airfield Awakens” and were astounded at how much was on, from the amazing “tree cosy”, tree sculptures, craft demos and projects for the kids, a knitting circle, windmill garden and puppet shows there was something for everyone - you could even get a guided tour of the farmyard by a talking sheep (or, as we called him sheep man). This was all in addition to the permanent attractions of the Overend family home, beautiful gardens, vintage cars, farmyard and woodland walks. It’s nice to see that a small cafe has been opened in addition to the delicious food in Overends for those who might want to grab a quick coffee with their picnic. There are so many places to sit and admire the view so even a busy weekend doesn’t feel crowded. We are members but for non-members tickets are €10 for an adult, €5 for children and free for children under 3. If you plan to go regularly the family passes are excellent value. They are running events for children all through the Easter holidays and have many other upcoming events including the ever popular Woolapalooza in May. These are all included in the ticket price, details on

Alphabet print from Harry Potter - The Printorium

Combining three very happy things, alphabets, Harry Potter and lovely prints The Printorium brings us the alphabet as seen in Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s stone. The Printorium designers, Miraphora Mina and Eduardo Lima are the very designers who worked on the original films and with the premium prints at a limited edition of 250 this is one not to be missed for the serious fans with the excuse of a kiddy bedroom to decorate or not. See the alphabet and the full collection Harry Potter prints here.

Teddy Bear Story Exhibition - The Ark

With a bed covered in soft toys and boxes stuffed with spares it is most certain that we have a teddy bear addict in the house. When we heard that the Ark was putting on an exhibition of and about teddy bears in conjunction with the wonderful V&A Museum of Childhood we booked our tickets straight away. The main exhibition consists of a display of vintage and modern bears from the V&A collection, from wooden Russian bears and early incarnations of the teddy bear to my childhood favourites Paddington, Sooty and Sweep to modern day Toy Story dictator Lotso. You can read about the history of teddy bears and the various countries and companies who excelled in making them. There is also a lovely collection of teddy portraits by photographer Mark Nixon displayed alongside the subjects of the photographs and the personal stories of the owners. You can also find out how teddy bears are made and attend teddy bear making workshops and the teddy bear’s hospital on particular days. A lot of our time was spent colouring in, reading real bear facts and feeding our own two teddy attendees at the teddy bears picnic. Plenty of activities in all to keep your teddy addicts busy. A must see is the brilliant Globe Theatre of teddies in reception, originally displayed in Harrod’s. The Teddy Bear Story runs until 6th April at the Ark in Temple Bar, check online for details of different events being held over the duration.

The Lonely Beast 123 - Pilcrow

In The Lonely Beast 123, the newest app from illustrator Chris Judge and development team James Kelleher & Simon Judge, the Lonely Beast returns to help us learn to count while following him throughout his day. From one beast waking up to twelve sheep helping him get to sleep, we help the beast count, as he bathes, cooks, reads and even gets pooped on by a friendly bird (husband and toddlers personal favourite). The illustration style is bright and fun with plenty of detail. The interactive elements encourage little hands to happily explore every screen. A nod to the Royal Tenenbaums, a raft of literary references, and subtle interactive elements keep the adults happy. The good quality music bests the lazy audio tracks served up by many other kids’ apps. This, combined with the lack of in app purchases and double-tap to open external links makes the app child and wallet friendly. With a loving eye for genuine craft and detail, the Lonely Beast 123 really is a step above other apps in this category. Another excellent app from the Pilcrow team. Check it out here and find out more about Chris’ books here.

Advice to Little Girls - Mark Twain author & Vladimir Radunsky illustrator

Possibly one for the Christmas list of mothers of little girls rather than little girls themselves. With lines like “Good little girls always show marked deference for the aged. You ought never to ‘sass’ old people unless they ‘sass’ you first” this illustrated version of Mark Twain’s 1865 short story is  a wonderful incitement for little girls to think for themselves. Find out more about this inspired reissue from Maria Popova here

Yoga Poster for Kids

Love this yoga poster designed to get little kids to try out a few poses. With names like Warrior, Sun Salute and Tree there is plenty of opportunity for story telling along the way as well. Available from Joyful Babies here.  

Jerry’s Day Out - A New York City Adventure - iPhone & iPad App by Ink Robin

We do seem to stick with the old favourites here but there’s always good reason. Ink Robin’s story book apps for iPhone and iPad are consistently well made with good illustrations, good stories and interactive features that complement the story rather than showcase the technology. Their latest release combines the illustration work of Swedish artist Gustav Dejert and their own photography of New York city. Jerry is a small bird who is lost in the big city who meets plenty of interesting and musical characters as he finds his way back to his friends and in the process brings us on a tour of New York from Soho to Harlem and everywhere in between. The story is simple but sweet and the illustration style works perfectly with the bright photographic backgrounds of New York (including the High Line, so want to visit someday soon!). Check out Jerry and the other titles from Ink Robin here.

FiLIP - Watch, Smart Phone & Locator for Kids

FiLIP is the world’s first smart phone, watch and locator combined designed for kids. With five pre-programmed numbers for them to call you, one way texting, an app that allows parents to see their children’s locations and set safe zones and a panic button this colourful chunky watch allows kids to roam free with a watchful eye monitoring them from a distance. Part of me worries about this level of tracking by already over anxious parents (never mind the possibility of anyone hacking the system to track your kids too!) but most of me just loves the look of these chunky, colourful watches that I would gladly wear and the benefit of contactable kids without the access to internet and text message bullying and the myriad of other issues mobile devices bring seems an excellent option to me. Find out more and make your own mind up about them here.


Spookley at Scalp Wood Nurseries

We spent a lovely morning with Mina and her family up at Scalp Wood Nurseries in Kilternan celebrating Hallowe’en and all things pumpkin. Spookley is a square pumpkin who doesn’t quite fit in, but as with all the best stories he finds his place in the end and he has become a symbol for anti-bullying initiatives for young children in America. This is the first time Spookley has come to Ireland. There are loads of activities for kids - finding your own pumpkin in the pumpkin patch, pumpkin carving demonstrations, visiting the spooky haunted house, colouring in, chalk boards (with the biggest chalk ever) along with regular readings of the Spookley story and screenings of the Spookley movie! There is no charge to go in and you can buy your own great pumpkin from €4 along with copies of the Spookley storybook and DVD if you wish. Scalp Wood Nurseries is opposite the old sports hotel in Kilternan and will be running the Spookley festival this weekend and next weekend. Highly recommended.

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