Friday, 7 September 2012

Back to school bits and bobs

I get emails every week inviting me to review things. Most of them are for tiny children, so I say no - but the back-to-school period has been a good time for age-appropriate offers. And I've been enjoying the parcels while I can.

First, I had an email from My Nametags asking me if I wanted to try out some clothing name labels and stickers for belongings. With Eldest starting secondary school this term it seemed a great time to say yes. And then suddenly all of Blogland reported that it was sewing on name labels.

Iron-on labels? With a 10-year life guarantee? Bring them on.

Eight seconds. They iron on in eight seconds (Don't give them nine, or they start to melt. See? They're actually serious about saving you even that last second.). Which gives you time to do other things, like drink, or sew something more interesting than name labels.

What I liked about them - other than the eight seconds thing - was the range. There are images, colours and fonts to choose from - you can see examples here - which made things more interesting for the Lattes, and the stickers also look quite cool when slapped on a lunchbox. The iron-on tags are less a fabric label, more a transfer - and though they're not going to satisfy the old-school white embroidered label purist, I am not one of those women. I value speed.

The Lattes chose green labels, with a little tree image and purple curly writing. We went with just the surname because if they really do last 10 years, we had to plan for hand-me-downs. Also I got a few different ones - white with a different font - so I could show you.

2012-09-07 13.54.10.jpg

They've been through the washing machine/ dishwasher a couple of times already, and I'm impressed. The stickers are also small enough to label every single thing - including pens - that Eldest owns. She's a child who tends to leave her belongings strewn in her wake. It's day four, and already her glasses are missing. Best to pin everything down. Stabilo asked if we wanted to try out pens. Did we? Everyone knows that the best thing about September is new pens. And these weren't just pens - these were pens created entirely for Eldest. Cappi pens are felt tips with caps that thread onto a loop ring, so they're harder to lose. Eldest's has just three colours - I covet the one on the right.

Now this - below - is lovely. It's the Stabilo Easy Original, and the fact that it impressed us is saying something. Having a child with cerebral palsy and fine motor difficulties, we're quite the aficionados of the ergonomic pen. We've tried a lot. This is a right-handed version (modelled by our righty, Littlest) but the first chance I get I'm off to Ryman's to track down the left handed pen for Eldest.

I'm stepping away from the Stabilo website now, because it's just too tempting. And besides, it's lunchtime. Have you seen my new lunchbox?

Yes. You heard that right. MY new lunchbox. Lunchboxes are so over now, according to Eldest, and as a result I'll be spending the weekend making these because a new ziplock bag each day is not something I can sanction. My new lunchbox came with a Bear Nibbles mango yoyo snack in it. I might eat it right now. It only has 27 calories. It's good for me. It has one of my five a day and fibre in it. I could give it to the children to eat before swimming but, you know, they got new pens. They'd never know.


  1. lunchboxes are so over here too apparently. I have been looking at bentoboxes and wondering what will happend if I just stuff it in a supermarket bag........

  2. Lunchboxes sadly are still in vogue here. (And water bottles - my daughter has had 4 in the last year - and no, none have worn out, she just really really really wanted each and every one. I have put my foot down and said she can't have any more until she leaves home. That might be a while away....)
    M has had the Stabilo Easy original pens for a while now - they are brilliant. A side effect of being very prem seems to be her coordination etc is a bit delayed and it is the only thing I found that has helped what was her really awful pen grip (my hand cramped up just watching her write). Luckily they're quite easy to track down now.
    Sounds like a lovely summer, despite the weather.

  3. Some of your pictures are missing...

  4. Stabilo is wonderful. We use the pens and also the drawing pencils - they're great for C, who is so hypermobile it's hard for her to hold a pen for any length of time. Her handwriting has definitely improved, as has her writing, as has her attitude towards writing. And the drawing pencils are so satisfying as you don't have to wear them down to a hub just to get a solid layer of color on the page.


I love comments. I always try to respond - either here in the commentbox or by email if Blogger gives me your email address.

Thanks for visiting!