Wednesday, 29 May 2013

Review: Frankie & Bennys New Specials Menu

Frankie and Benny's the New York Italian restaurant chain has become a bit of a favourite of ours in the last couple of years.  Prior to that I never really went there, I am not one for chain restaurants in general as I find the food always disappoints me BUT not so with Frankie and Benny's.  I'm not sure if we are super lucky with our local Stevenage restaurant or if they are all as good as this one.  The staff there are really friendly, very efficient and keep a good restaurant and the food is very delicious.

Dh and I went along to try out the new specials menu last week one lunchtime when they kids were at school. It is funny how things change as you get older and have children. It used to be that all our dates were on an evening and involved being out for hours, nowadays it is often about lunchtime and just an hour or two, but still equally as enjoyable.

The Specials Menu is available all day Sunday through to Friday and presents really excellent value, especially on an evening. You can have 2 courses for £10.95 and even add on a third course for another £2.25.

On the day I had the Philly Cheese Steak Sandwich followed by Salt Caramel Cheesecake and dh had Meatball Siciliana Calzone and Banoffee Brownie. We each tried a bit of all the meals and I can honestly say I'd of been happy to eat any of them. When we go back I will have the Philly Cheese Steak Sandwich again though - it was such a big portion and the chips are very good, they have a sort of rough quality to them and are super tasty.

I would find it hard to choose between the cheesecake and brownie as they were both excellent, we will probably have to share again. As we ordered I mentioned that I love salt caramel sauce and the waitress bought me an extra pot, which was a nice touch.

We both had a soft drink and these are £2.55 each which is about the norm for this kind of family restaurant. While we were there someone had a birthday and a big bear came out along with a cake and some music was played across the restaurant and the young teenager was thoroughly embarrassed to have such a big fuss made of her. We both commented that our kids would love that!

Take a look at our food -


Thanks for Frankie and Benny's for a really great meal.

Disclosure: We were provided with our meals free of charge for the purposes of this review. I have not been instructed hat to write and I remain honest.

Thursday, 16 May 2013

Review: Playing For Keeps DVD

Tonight I realised that at times I can be pretty shallow. I sat down to watch Playing for Keeps, which had arrived for me to review and I looked at the write-up and wondered why I had said yes to this DVD and then I spotted it starred Gerard Butler and remembered that I'd watch anything with him in!

Luckily this film turned out to have more going for it than just Gerard. It is a really easy watch with a simple storyline and some great stars. It is the kind of film that you do not have to concentrate too hard on, you can just enjoy it and relax. A classic romantic comedy.

So what's the storyline?
George is a former sports star who is down on his luck and in need of a break. Realising that he has next to  no relationship with his son he moves to Virginia to be close to his ex-wife and son. Slowly he starts to build a relationship with his son and soon he is coaching his soccer team. Georges good looks attract the attention of some of the soccer mums and then he is busy fighting (but not too hard) off the Mums and starts to let his son down yet again. George then gets a lead on a sports presenters job and get distracted yet again... but will he resist the charms of these women and win back the family that he loves?

Who steals the show?
Generally I think the acting was really good from all the stars, I particularly liked Jessica Biel as the ex-wife Stacie and Noah Lomax does a superb job as Lewis, George's son. Dennis Quaid is a great laugh and Catherine Zeta-Jones rocks the rich bored housewife/ mum character.

There are so many stars in this move it is unreal - as well as those mentioned above there is also Uma Thurman and Judy Greer.

My favourite part of the movie?
When George opens up and tells his ex-wife how he feels about her, very touching and well acted on both parts.


Is it an award winner?
In my humble opinion no, this film is not going to set your world on fire but it is a nice easy watch that is pleasant and great for date night or girlie night in. Go and enjoy.....

Film Details
Rating: 12 (mild swearing a few times)
Run time: 105 minutes
Release Date in the UK: 20th May 2013

You can order the film from Amazon ready for its release, the price is £11.25 for the DVD and £15.50 for the Blu-ray. Both contain some special features -
  • Deleted Scenes 
  • The Playbook: Making Playing for Keeps 
  • Creating An All-Star Team: The Cast of Playing for Keeps 


This DVD was sent to me free of charge for the purposes of this review. 
I have not been instructed what to write and I remain honest.

Saturday, 11 May 2013

Review: Clothing Labels from The Name Label Company

We are moving house soon and with this move comes a new school for my three children.  So this summer instead of just renewing a few bits of school uniform that my kids have outgrown, I'll be buying three complete new sets of uniform and needing to relabel all those pieces.


It was perfect timing on the part of The Name Label Company to have contacted me about a review a couple of weeks ago. When they offered name labels I nearly snapped their hand off and asked for three packs of mixed school labels. There are various different types and packs of labels you can go for but I was keen to try the tagg-on labels for clothing.  My Mum had used these with my Nan's clothes whilst she was in a care home and had been raving to me abut how good they are.

School label pack 3 consists of 48 tagg-on and 48 stick-on labels and retails for £17.99. I was happy with this price and the customisation that you can choose for the labels. You can state colour, font type and image picture to go on the labels so there is no need for the labels in your child's clothes to look like every other child's. That of course is really important for pre-school kids who cannot yet read.

I was keen to try out the tagg-on labels straight away and I labelled up some of my girls clothes. They have been through the wash a couple of times now and not a sign of them becoming less fixed or of any fading on the writing or fraying of the label. The tagg-on labels are really simple to put on the clothes and that was my main desire for them, I wanted something very secure but which takes just moments and these are the answer to that. No needle and thread necessary and no fiddly ironing which has to be done at a specific heat!
When I first looked at the tagg-ons I did worry that they would poke and hurt my kids but I followed the very easy instructions (which are printed on the plastic pack itself so I can't lose them - I like that) and once you easily snap off the long part they are secure and smooth.

As well as the fabulous tagg-on labels we also received sticky labels and I added one of these to JJ's new lunchbox. This has been through the dishwasher every day for over a week and I'm happy to say that it is staying put, keeping its colour and still looking perfect.

I'd be really happy to use The Name Label Company again as I found their service super efficient. The labels came so quickly that I asked if I got special treatment and was told that all orders placed prior to 2pm on week days are shipped the same date and that UK postage is free of charge.  I like the fact that the price I see if the final one I pay, very up-front. My labels arrived in a weather proof package and looked very professional.

I will happily give my labels 10/10 - there is genuinely not anything I am unsatisfied with.


I was provided with these labels free of charge for the purpose of this review. I have not been instructed what to write and I remain honest.