Tinkerbell and the Legend of the NeverBeast

We are huge Tinkerbell fans in the Dare household and we have become quite the Disney Fairies experts so the boys (and I) were just a little bit excited to preview the newest film, Tinkerbell and the Legend of the NeverBeast last week (or Eleven of the NeverBeast as Nate called it for the first couple of days) Tink and her friends are out in UK and Irish cinemas TODAY, and it’s the perfect break from Christmas chaos and this cold weather! So grab your coat and your kids and head to the cinema for a lovely film full of faith, trust and pixie dust!

The latest in the Tinkerbell series actually focuses on Fawn (voiced by Ginnifer Goodwin), the animal fairy with a big heart for the scary animals that most fairies try to keep out of Pixie Hollow. She has been given a lush new hairdo for the film and a much bigger role than the titular fairy, which I really liked. I hope there are more films going deeper into the inner workings of the fairy world (but I’m just a nerd like that). We also meet some new fairies that where only alluded to in one of Tink’s earlier mishaps, the Scout Fairies.

With their pretty killer striped jumpsuits and arsenal of bows, spears and nets, you know these guys are not to be messed with. The leader of the scout gang, Nyx (Rossario Dawson) isn’t too impressed with Fawn’s compassion for dangerous creatures and seems to have it out for her. What we eventually learn is that Nyx isn’t a bad guy, she’s just super into her job, which happens to be keeping the fairies safe from big dangerous creatures. It’s all about balance in the fairy world, everyone has to work together and share information to make things run smoothly…but not too smoothly that we can’t squeeze a feature film out of a couple of days down in the Hollow.

An comet awakens the NeverBeast, a totally weird but loveable dog-possum that likes to build crazy rock towers. Who is this beast? What’s she up to? Is she a monster or just misunderstood. Spoiler (but not really, cause this is Disney we’re talking about): Gruff the NeverBeast is totally there to save the day, but not before a misunderstanding nearly destroys them all.

It’s definitely the most action packed of the Disney Fairy films, with some pretty awesome moves by the scouts. It lent itself nicely to 3D for little kids, there’s nothing too jarring, but there’s a scene at the end with hundreds of little fairies flying (just like festive fairy lights!) that looks stunning in 3D. I love these films for their gripping plots without resorting to cheap tricks and adult jokes. It’s jut good, old fashioned storytelling and perfect for introducing little kids to the magic of the cinema.

My two boys loved the film and Nate surprised me by keeping his 3D glasses on the entire time. He went on and on about the film, drawing picture of the beast afterwards and recalling the plot (in pretty accurate detail) to anyone willing to listen. On Saturday his auntie sat down next to him in the car and he said “Liz, the Legend of the NeverBeast is a long movie and I’m going to tell you all of it!” And he did, nearly all the way to Wicklow! Alex managed pretty well, he sat still (thanks to a steady flow of raisins and Cheerios) and picked up on more details of the movie than I thought he would. He does love Tinkerbell and pretending to fly around like a fairy.

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Check out Tinkerbell and the Legend of the NeverBeast in UK and Irish cinemas December 12. Thanks to Disney Ireland for inviting us to preview the film. 

PicStick Magnets (Review)

picsticl photo magnetsI was recently asked to check out PicStick personalised photo magnets. I had lots of ideas of what to print but when I started to think of the magnets coming in packs of nine (It’s a sheet of magnets divided into nine pieces that easily separate). I decided to make the magnets into a number game for the boys. At home and on my walk to collect Nate from preschool I snapped a few numbers with my iphone. They turned out great and the boys love ordering the numbers on the fridge and trust me they have withstood a lot of abuse by little hands.

picstick_2They get a thumbs up from Nate and from me too. Of course, they’d be great for holiday snaps, family photos, and all those carefully filtered Instagram photos (although, you’d notice that the magnets are not square so frame your subjects with that in mind). I’m thinking of ordering some more to make a family tree or even photos of the kids’ drawings to hold up their drawings (totally meta, right?) I’m sure all the grandparents would love a few magnets of the little angels for their fridge.

The quality is great and the website is really easy to use. You can upload images from your computer, Facebook or Instagram and have the option to crop and rotate within the PicStick editor. One sheet of 9 magnets is  only £9.50/$14.99 and shipping is free.

If you hurry to www.picstick.com there’s a Black Friday 3 for 1 offer so you can get plenty of stocking stuffers. Just use the code GIFT3FREE to get 3 sets of magnet sheets for £9.50/$14.99.

I was provided one complementary sheet of magnets for the purposes of this review. All opinions are my own (and Nate’s).

 

2014 Project (week 46)

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This little dude has been killing it lately with spontaneous bursts of dancing and drumming. He has always been pretty rad about his choice in music, but this week he totally surprised me by jumping down from the table to dance to Belle & Sebastian’s new single The Party Line. He says it’s our song and has choreographed some super sweet moves to it. If you know anything about me, it’s that I totally love that band. So it’s like in his DNA.

Here’s a little video to show you just how freakin cute he is. (And don’t mind Alex’s crying towards the end. He just gets mad when he can’t see his own picture on my iphone. He perked up once I put the phone in his own hands. That boy loves a selfie!)

Nate Dancing to Belle & Sebastian’s Party Line from The Dares on Vimeo.

2014 Project (weeks 44 & 45)

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I am totally having trouble getting back into blogging after a long holiday away, but luckily the kids are still pretty cute. Here they are showing their Dublin roots as two tough dudes in the W. Drive Gang.

45_52_2014And now we have two ferocious critters on their way to The Gruffalo Live at the Pavilion Theatre in Dun Laoghaire. It was such a great performance! The highlight was definitely when the Gruffalo came into the audience to talk to my little tiger who backed up into my lap saying “oh no, he scare me!”. Nate loved getting lots of attention as a tiny Gruffalo. He growled at all the people on the street but was a bit to quiet to actually scare people. In the theatre all the kids were waving an pointing at him. I almost expected him to start signing autographs. We’re going through a serious dressing up phase and I love it!

 

DIY Fabric Covered Buttons

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I suppose it’s time for me to buck up and admit that winter is coming. I don’t know why it shocks me every year, but I’m a South Texas girl who loves the sunshine. So to spruce up my trusty M&S winter coat, I swapped out the big plasticy black buttons for fabric covered buttons. It’s a quick DIY job that brightens up a winter coat (without having to shell out for a new one!

This project only took a few minutes to cover the buttons and a few more minutes to sew them on. It’s easily an afternoon project (depending on how good you are at sewing buttons!) The ditsy floral fabric is from Floppy Fabrics and I found the button cover kit at Tiger (although any fabric store or haberdashery should have them. Just make sure they fit your buttonhole). You’ll also need strong, all purpose thread for sewing the buttons on. And a coat obviously.

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You’re button kit will have instructions. Basically you need to cut a circle of fabric larger than the circumference of the button. Fold it in over the inner piece, then press the backing piece firmly in place (you can also do a slip stitch to hold the fabric in place around the inner disc, but that’s a lot of extra work). A couple of my buttons popped off after my first wear because I wasn’t firm enough. A couple drops of glue or a stronger grip should do the trick.

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And there you have it. I picked this fabric because it was bright and tonal. A contrasting fabric would have been cute too, but I like to keep my options open for accessorising with scarves. Now that I think of it, a geometric black and white print would have been nice too. And for full disclosure, I covered my buttons at the end of the season last year so that it would be a nice surprise when I pulled it out of the closet, which explains the sunshine and long hair in the photo!