10 things you need to know about Animal Crossing New Leaf on the 3DS

El has been playing Nintendo’s Animal Crossing New Leaf all summer. Here are our previous posts:

This is our introduction to the game

and this is from when El had played it a lot more.

And so to round things off, here are her top tips:

  1. You can share pictures from the game with your friends on Twitter, Facebook and Tumblr.animal-leaf-new-crossing-3dsxl
  2. You can also send your friends special ACNL e-cards
  3. If you get the pre-loaded 3DS you can also use it to take pictures and send messages.
  4. You can download new, free content for the game from here
  5. If you hold down the B button your character will start to run fast. This will speed things up A LOT
  6. You can design your own clothes!
  7. You really should save up for your house deposit. Don’t be the only one in a tent.
  8. Hit the rocks. Sometimes they have valuable things inside…
  9. You can stack fruit.
  10. Get a net, a fishing rod and a shovel. They are essential!

But above all remember that there are lots of surprises in this game, and the more you play it, the more you will unlock!

Animal Crossing New Leaf is available for the Nintendo 3DS and costs about £28 for the game

El was sent a special 3DS XL which comes pre-loaded with Animal Crossing New Leaf. If you are thinking of getting one of these for a lucky someone for Christmas then do it soon because these are limited edition and it doesn’t look like there are too many left!

Hope you enjoy playing the game!

El & Jae
People Crossing New Blog

September 30, 2013. Tags: , , . Reviews, Top Tips. 2 comments.

Tights Frights – Louise Rennison Books Reviewed

The Taming of the Tights

If you have been reading since the start you may recall that way back last year El met the top author Louise Rennison.

Louise Rennison is best known for writing Angus, Thongs and Full Frontal Snogging which was also made into a film adaptation of that book and the sequel (It’s Ok I’m Wearing Really Big Knickers). But she’s written tons of other books too and recently the publishers sent El three of them to read.

Free books! It’s like a bookworm’s Christmas. Bookmas! Chrisworm! Or something.

Anyway El was really pleased as she’s read the entire Angus, Thongs series (and there are quite a few of them) so more Louise Rennison books was a dream come true.

This is what El thought of the books she was sent:

 

Withering Tights

This is the first in Louise Rennison’s series of books about Tallulah Casey. El really like the punny name and really enjoyed the book too.

It was about Georgia’s (from Angus, Thongs) younger cousin who goes to a summer drama school in Yorkshire. She meets new friends, boys and does a good Irish dance. Also there are little owlets. Which are cute. Also there were the Dobbins with which she stays who are hilarious and the twins remind El of Just William’s younger cousin in that Christmas story.

A very funny read that El enjoyed. Worth reading if you enjoyed Angus Thongs or if you’re a teen girl who likes a light read that will make you laugh.

 

A Midsummer Tights Dream

The second in the series and is a little slimmer than the first one at 333 pages to 351. Tallulah goes back to the drama school but this time as a proper student. It’s more of the same light humour with yet more boys, yet more larking with mates and more Irish dancing.

In this book Dother Hall looks set to close which would be the end to Lullah’s dreams. If you enjoyed the first I would definitely recommend reading this.

 

The Taming of the Tights

This is the most up to date of the Tallulah Casey books and was just released in July on hardback and Kindle – you’ll have to wait until next January for the paperback.

This book definitely lives up to its predecessors. El would very much recommend reading it if you liked the first two. It could be read alone but I wouldn’t recommend it as it was written to be another in a series and not a stand alone book. However the fact that the name pun wasn’t really a pun and was just the words tights shoved into a Shakespeare play annoyed El.

In conclusion, El thinks that you will like these books if you are a teen girl and if you enjoyed the Angus Thongs series.

 

El & Jae
4 Legs Good – especially in tights

We love Louise Rennison!

We love Louise Rennison!

September 2, 2013. Tags: , , , . Reviews. Leave a comment.

These boots were made for Eljae

How are your feet in this frosty weather? Are they chilly and frostbitten or toasty warm? El has been experiencing extra toastiness in the feet direction, ever since shoe company Barratts invited her to review their range.

El in Boots

El in Boots

We had heard of Barratts, but somehow the shops have managed to pass us by, even though apparently there is one in the centre of Brighton.

The junior girls section has a few styles with low heels, and lots of flatter heeled boots and shoes which of course are much better for stomping about.

Every girl, young or old, needs a decent pair of stompy boots.

El chose these Biker Boots with a buckle trim. The regular price is £28, but at the time we ordered there was 30% off everything which put them down to under £20.

Right there’s still 30% off everything and free delivery for orders over £30 (don’t know when this is ending), so if you know your size then it definitely pays to order online.

El thought that the boots were completely gorgeous and they are. They’re really lovely. Lovely, lovely completely amazing! Yaaaaay!!! Seriously they look AMAZING!!! And feel super comfy to wear.

They’re manmade (not leather) and the inside of the boots has a cosy fleecy feel. For some reason the design makes El’s feet look smaller than they really are (which freaked El out)!

barratts-boots

Our only slight quibble is that delivery wasn’t particularly fast(though to be fair, quicker than promised) – we opted for the standard delivery which promised to arrive in 7 days, but it actually took 6 days. Jae placed the order on the Monday morning and El’s boots arrived on Saturday afternoon. You can pay for faster delivery but it’s quite pricey at £5.50.

Also we noticed that the company doesn’t offer free returns, which many online retailers do. You can still return shoes if you don’t like them, but you’ll have to pay the postage (unless there’s a fault).

But all in all we give a big thumbs (and toes) up to Barratts’ boots. Thank you to Barratts for sending us these boots to review and for saving El from the horror of unfashionable footwear.

 

El and Jae
Stompin’ up a storm

December 13, 2012. Tags: , , , , . Reviews. 1 comment.

Gifts for…everybody, really

You may have noticed that there is a gifting season coming up. Actually, double gifting if your name is El and you have a birthday in the same week.

So perfect timing for us to be asked to try out the Gifts for the Girls website.

But we are not particularly girly girls. El is a long way from being a pinky princess and Jae gets twitchy if she’s wearing less than 3 items of black clothing. We like gadgets and practical stuff, we like toys and we don’t like useless fluffiness (unless on kittens – KITTENS RULE!).

So could Gifts for the Girls deliver to very particular girls/women like us?

Well, you can’t fault them on choice. There are over 3,000 gifts on the site, including lots of things under £10, so you could get a big chunk of your Christmas shopping done at once.

We were invited to choose two gifts up to the value of £40 and after a lot of chin scratching and clickety clicking this is what we went for:

Rotary Motorised Coin Sorter (RRP £24.99)

This is the Rolls Royce of money boxes. You put your change in the top and it automatically sorts it out for you. The tubes of coins swing out like arms so you can extract your sorted loot. It’s very simple but totally hypnotic. Jae has a change box where she saves up pennies for Christmas, and this sorted them out in seconds.

We loved this item, (there was somthing highly amusing about it – Jae was giggling like a 5 year old) but it wasn’t perfect – the coins got stuck a few times and we had to lever off the top to get it going again. It wasn’t entirely accurate (why is that 1p in the 20p tube? Why?! If that was true I would be 19p RICHER!) Also batteries aren’t included, so you’ll have to supply two C sized batteries. And occasionally coins have disappeared in there that didn’t resurface till the next time we used it.

So not a 100% success although we did like it a lot and would be pleased to receive this as a gift (if we didn’t already have one).

We also ordered the Make Your Own Lip Balm kit. (RRP £14.99)

This is something which you could either give as a gift in itself, or use it to make 4 further gifts. It contains (almost) all you need to make 4 lip balms – all you have to add is a little sunflower oil. There are also gift bags and ribbon to make your lip balms look good.

The instructions are very clear and easy to follow – it’s basically a process of melting the ingredients together. It needs adult supervision and has the potential to be messy but really it’s quite simple and fun to do.

El ADORED this, it was fun to make and the lip balms were extremely moisturising (MOIST! What a pleasing word!) and smelt of orange but not too strongly. It made a great gift and there is something oddly satisfying about using lip balm you have made yourself.

We know that girls aged around 12 can be hard to buy for, but we think either of these would be a good choice for the tweenager in your life.

The Details
Gifts for the Girls
has over 3,000 gifts. We found the site easy to navigate – we didn’t have to wait ages for pages to load. Yes there is a fair amount of pink stuff, but to be fair a lot of girls like that stuff and you might have to buy a present for them. Plus there is also a good selection gadgets, geeky stuff and a talking toilet roll holder. (Who DOESN’T need one of those? You can record your own message. Imagine the comedy possibilities?!)

The site says they’ve been trading for over 23 years and have over 1 million satisfied customers. Delivery costs from £4.99 (overseas delivery is more) and orders in most cases arrive within 5 days.

 

What gifts are you buying for the girls in your life this Christmas? Leave a comment, we won’t tell.

 

El and Jae
Thank you very much

November 26, 2012. Tags: , , , , , , . Reviews. Leave a comment.

Scary movie – Monster High: Ghouls Rule

It’s only a few weeks until Halloween. We love Halloween and El has been getting ready:

 

We have also been watching a scary movie, which was sent to us for review and is brand new released this week. But not any old scary movie – this one’s suitable for kids.

Monster High: Ghouls Rule is the first film featuring the animated versions of the mega popular Monster High range of dolls. All the favourites are here: Frankie  Stein (based on Mary Shelly’s Frankenstein’s monster), Draculaura (Bram Stoker’s Dracula), Clawdeen Wolf (werewolf) and Abbey Bominable (the Abominable Snowman). It’s a bit like High School Musical without the songs but with added fangs. Grrrrrr!

The plot involves the beastly students on a mission to win back Halloween from the Normies.

We like the underlying ethos of: Be Yourself, Be Unique, Be a Monster. What a great motto to live by.

El liked Cleo the Mummy’s daughter, the clothes obsessed spolit brat and the headless headmistress.

As a film, though, it makes a great doll advert. Little brother Eye found it too horrific, and not in the way the makers intended, as he covered his eyes and complained This is really bad.

But this DVD is not really aimed at little brothers. If you like the dolls you will like this.

If you like animated high school kids with snakes in their hair you will like it even more.

It wasn’t really aimed at our age group so we didn’t really engage with it that much, but then we don’t have the dolls and we think that younger girls would really enjoy it.

Monster High: Ghouls Rule is released on 8th October in DVD, Blu Ray and digital download formats, priced from £10.99, currently reduced to a bargain £8 at Amazon. Includes main feature plus three extra bonus short cartoons.

El and Jae
Seriously Spooky

October 9, 2012. Tags: , , , , . Reviews. 1 comment.

Review: We Are Scientists

School’s out for summer!

School’s out for ever!

Actually, it’s not.

We’ve got to go back in September, but let’s pretend for now.

Even though our brains are in need of a big rest, we don’t mind educational toys as long as they are FUN.

The appliance of science

El and Eye both did really well in science class this year, so we were really pleased to have a play with some science kits which were sent to us for review by DKL Toys. At first glance these aren’t the most excitingly packaged toys – Jae thought they looked more like classroom resources than something you’d pick up in a toy shop. But when we opened them up we found that they were a lot more fun than the outside suggests.

First up, we tried out the Miniland Jet Air Rocket Kit. It’s designed to teach you about physics and air power. This was a very simple kit to put together – in under 10 minutes we’d created a rocket. It’s stated as being for

Professor Dennis builds a rocket

age 8-14 but younger children could manage it with help. Dennis the cat will help if you like. It costs £12.95, comes in a nice metal tin and is a good size for a birthday present.

Then we moved on to a bigger kit, the Miniland Electric Circuit Kit. At £24.95 it’s more expensive than the jet rocket kit, but we spent much longer playing with it.

Over all we think it gives good value for money as it offers a wide variety of experiments which a number of children can work on together. It includes 88 pieces including motors, switches, lights and noisy sirens.

It’s also marked as suitable for age 8-14 but El and Eye were learning about the kind of circuits it contains in Year 2 (so aged around 7). Eye who’s 9 had no problem using the kit.

Experimenting with Miniland Electrokit

You can use the kit to do up to 80 experiments, which are clearly explained in the booklet that comes with it, including lighting a bulb, creating a siren and sending signals.

Be warned though – batteries are not included and you will need 4 AA batteries – we ended up cannibalising the TV remote, so with this kit you may end up watching less telly, whether you intend to or not.

El and Eye’s verdict:

We like these kits – they’re cool! The experiment we liked best involved making a flying fan that flew right up to the ceiling. We also liked being able to make our own circuits as we enjoyed doing that at school but hadn’t been able to do it at home before.

All in all these are great kits to encourage an interest in science – if the summer carries on like it’s been doing then this could be a good investment for indoor fun. And we like the look of the rest of the Miniland range too – they seem like proper science rather than a flimsy craft kit. And by the time you go back to school you will be top of the class!

 

Professors El and Jae
We has skillz

July 21, 2012. Tags: , , , . Reviews. 2 comments.

Children’s book review: Pegasus and the Flame by Kate O’Hearn

Today we have a guest review from Eye, El’s 8 year old brother, and a tip for how you can get free kids’ books.

A while ago, Eye read about the Hachette children’s books review crew in the back of one of his How to Train Your Dragon books. We went on to the website and filled in his details. We didn’t expect to hear anything else, but then a package arrived with a free book for Eye! He was so pleased.

Eye received Pegasus and the Flame by Kate O’Hearn

It was quite long for a children’s book (over 350 pages), but he read it all and this is his review:

Eye says:

“I like that this book has two stories – one of them is myth, and one of them is in real life New York. Then some of the mythical stuff comes to New York city. Pegasus the winged horse crashes on to a roof and another man crashes on to the streets and another mythical person crashes in to Central Park.

The characters are trying to save Olympus before the Olympic flame burns out. This is an exciting story with lots of action. Boys and girls aged 9 and over would like this book. Some of the words I found a bit hard but I kept reading because it’s a good story.”

So it’s a big thumbs up from Eye for this book, and a recommendation for the review crew if you are interested in reviewing new children’s books.

April 2, 2012. Tags: , , , . Reviews, Stuff we love, Top Tips. 1 comment.

New toy review: Petite Harumika – teeny tiny fashion fun

A few years ago we went to the launch of Harumika, and we didn’t know it at the time, but it was the start of something big. Since then El has played with her own Harumika and we’ve bought them lots of times for birthday presents. Very good if you need something for girls aged 7 and older.

If you haven’t seen them, Harumika is a mini dressmaker’s doll. You can fit outfits on to it by fastening the material with a slot in the back, so it’s a craft activity that doesn’t need any glue, scissors or sewing. Which is good because we can never find those things when we want them.

Hands up for Harumika

But now the brand is getting bigger and smaller at the same time, as they’ve just released Petite Harumika, a pocket sized version of the bigger kits.  It costs around £8 and contains a mini dress form (which you can make into a pencil topper or bag charm) and material, ribbon and stickers to decorate it with. We were sent a kit to try, and here’s the verdict:

El says

My fingers were a bit too big for this because I’m 12! I think it is more for little girls. This would make a good travel toy when you’re on holiday or bored in the car. I didn’t like the beaded bit that attached the pokey thing with the doll, it really annoyed me!!!!! I definitely prefer big Harumika, though I’m a bit old for it now. It’s a really nice idea that many girls would enjoy.

March 17, 2012. Tags: , , . Reviews. Leave a comment.

Children’s book review: Project Jackalope by Emily Ecton

What a surprise (not) El has been reading again! The publishers sent us a new book called Project Jackalope to put to the bookworm test.

About the book:

A jackalope is a mythical creature which looks like a cutesy bunny rabbit but with super sharp antlers. Jeremy’s troubles begin when his eccentric neighbour, Professor Twitchett, leaves him an ‘experiment’ for safe-keeping;  a Jackalope! Then government agents show up at Jeremy’s house, everything goes crazy bananas. It seems the government wants the Jackalope for their own purposes, and they will stop at nothing to get him. Jeremy must find a way to protect the Jackalope, and himself, so he reluctantly joins forces with Agatha, his holier-than-thou genius neighbor and classmate. With the Jackalope (and his weapons-grade-antlers) tucked away in a backpack, they have only one chance to save Jack and still find a way to get their science fair projects in on time.

What El liked:

The idea and the imagination of it all. It’s a good idea and has a lot of potential. It’s written well. It’s not really my type of book but I can see lots of other people liking it.

 
What El didn’t like:

Well to be honest it wasn’t really my type of book. I lost interest in it a lot. However just because I don’t like it doesn’t mean that many other people wouldn’t enjoy it.
I’m also a bit worried about the age rating. There is one swear word that I noticed which I believe was not suitable for the book’s target age group (10 and up). I’m also a bit concernernd about the jackalope’s fondness for booze. But hey if that’s the legend of the jackalope then I guess it’s gotta be in the book.

This is a good book for:

Boys aged 10 and up whose parents don’t mind them reading the occasional swear word and like unusual stories.

Project Jackalope by Emily Eaton is published by Chronicle Books, price £9.99

March 10, 2012. Tags: , , , . Reviews. Leave a comment.

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