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At the beginning of the summer the boys were sent a Faber-Castell distraction packs, fabulous connector pens, grip pencils, a mechanical pencil of sorts and even a rubber. The idea was for us to test these out to see just how good they could be for keeping the boys amused when out and about, travelling and for rainy days (or too hot days when you want to stay inside and lounge).

Needless to say the pack was a big hit….

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Hours and hours of fun all from a little back of goodies!

What’s more as a parent I’ve become very fond of the Faber-Castell brand and so will be ordering more to stock Kieran’s school pencil case. The Scribolino Mechanical pencil alone has been a big hit with Kieran who says that he finds it easy to use, comfortable and that it helps him write more neatly. 


I’ve been really pleased with the quality and how sturdy these materials have been. I might need to invest in a few bits and pieces for the office….

Faber-Castell products are available from and the full range may be found on the Faber-Castell  website. For new products, highlights and more visit the Facebook page or catch up with the team over on Twitter.


Kieran using Faber-Castell products when doing his homework.




Photo credit

I’ve written in the past about how important I feel it is for us as parents to teach our children about financial matters. At this stage, with my children being 3yrs and 8yrs we have limited this pretty much to savings, not buying on credit and choosing carefully what you spend your money on.

Our next stage will at some point be to talk to the boys about more in-depth financial matters. Growing up we didn’t get “proper” financial education at school (unless paying a pound a week into the school bank counts?) and so we’ve been firmly behind Martin Lewis’ campaign to introduce financial education as part of the national curriculum.

Roy and I firmly believe that it is up to us to teach the boys as they grow about the importance of pensions, protecting your identity and financial information and of knowing and understanding your credit rating. As with all things with financial matters if you have a good grounding before you are thrown out into the world where all the temptations of credit products and spend now worry later options exist you will be better placed to make smarter decisions.

We wish that we’d known more about pension plans, investments and insurances when we were younger as our “pots” which are supposed to tide us over when we are older would be a lot fuller than they currently are. With so many products available now, never mind when the boys are older it makes sense to know what you want or at the very least how to find out about what you want and need from a reputable source.

Places like the credit expert website offer an easy to use to tool to help you navigate your credit rating, to fix any errors and to learn more about how you may improve it. While we believe saving up for things before you buy them is important credit does play a part in modern life, with things like car finance and of course mortgages being effected by how well or poor your credit rating appears. We plan to teach the boys the fundamentals of financial planning and ensure that before they are thrust out into the big bad world to function independently that they also understand where to go for help and advice for financial matters.

The old saying goes that money can’t buy you happiness and of course there are more important things however money can buy you security, opportunities, freedom to pursue your interests and ensure that no matter what happens in your life that you are covered so to speak. We have plans and we have products in place to ensure that our kids will be fine, no matter what happens to us and all that we want is for them to have the same peace of mind.

What do you plan to teach your kids about finance and their future? I’d love to know. I really think such matters being covered in school in the future will be an amazing improvement on what is offered now however still believe that it is up to us as their parents to reinforce what they learn and ensure that it is adequate.

Kieran is already a keen saver and we hope to encourage him to extend this into pensions and investments when he is a little older, as well as building an awareness of what a credit rating is and why it matters for himself and his brother.

Kieran is already a keen saver and we hope to encourage him to extend this into pensions and investments when he is a little older, as well as building an awareness of what a credit rating is and why it matters for himself and his brother.

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