Boy plugging in the Nissan LEAFOne of the things that has become very clear to me during my six week trial of the Nissan LEAF (thanks to the GoUltraLow campaign) is that “range anxiety” is a very real phenomenon. I’m used to driving a car with a 350 mile range on a full tank of petrol, and when my trip computer tells me I have 70 or 80 miles range left I start thinking it’s time to fill up again. Every morning of driving the Nissan LEAF I would switch it on and it would show me that the battery was 100% full, and my expected range was somewhere between 80 and 90 miles. I found it quite a big change to be driving a car which starts the day with a range that would normally trigger me to find a petrol station fairly soon. As I said in my full review of the Nissan LEAF I found that on the whole the car’s range was fine for our lifestyle and we had no concerns with our day to day driving – commuting, travelling to nearby towns, kids activities, shopping etc. We would drive the car around during the day, plug it in to charge up overnight, and it would be ready to go again the next morning. That was all very well, but I felt that to truly test all aspects of the car we should also try a longer run, a journey that would require us to use the network of public charging facilities to charge “on the go”.

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TheBoyandMe's 365 LinkyAs we approach the end of the summer holidays I am finding myself hugely conflicted. On the one hand I can’t wait for the kids to go back to school, to get back to the normal routine, and to get a little bit of my “me” time back. As has probably been apparent over the last few weeks it’s been challenging juggling all my usual work with childcare plus being involved with a local theatre production. I feel like I’m running around in circles at the moment. Hence the reason I’m posting two weeks worth of daily photos this week, as I didn’t manage to post last week. But at the same time as I’m looking forward to the schools going back, I’m not looking forward to the geekson starting school. My baby is starting school, and I’m still not sure I’m ready for that. No doubt about it, he is more than ready – he’s very excited about the prospect – let’s see if that lasts when he realises it will be every day! Anyway, here’s what’s been keeping up busy over the last two weeks: [click to continue…]

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The geek family with the Nissan LEAF we will be driving for the next 6 weeks as part of the #GoUltraLow campaignWe’re now coming to the end of our six week trial of the Nissan LEAF courtesy of the GoUltraLow campaign, and I noticed the other day that we’ve now driven more than 1,000 miles in the 100% electric car. So I thought it was time I posted an update to let you all know how we’re getting on with it.

In our six weeks we have used the LEAF as our main car, only getting my beloved Nissan Note out when both of us needed to be in different places at the same time. This means that both the geekdaddy and I have used it to commute to work (my office is about 20 miles away, his is more like 10) and for various errands around town, including the weekly shop. I’ve driven it to my drama rehearsals three times a week in a nearby town, the geekdaddy drove it into Manchester several times for a training course he was on, and we’ve driven the kids around to their various activities. And we’ve also tried a longer trip, with a family outing to Alton Towers. This is pretty indicative of our typical driving, and means we’ve been able to evaluate how the LEAF fits in with our family lifestyle, which was one of the aspects we were asked to concentrate on when testing.

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CBeebies Magazine coverThe geekson and I were invited to a special event held by CBeebies Magazine at the Alton Towers hotel. We were told it would be a morning of fun activities, and we were promised a very special guest at the end as well. We’d already been told about the summer promotion that CBeebies Magazine are running where they are offering free child entry to certain Merlin attractions, so I was expecting a morning geared at promoting that. But that wasn’t what we had at all…

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A Photo A Day – Week 33 Roundup

August 17, 2014

We’ve had more “juggling” than usual to do this week, with the geekdaddy having to work full days in his office to cover staff holidays (he can usually work from home), and the geekdaughter spending the whole week in “Mad Science” camp (more on that later). This means I’ve been dashing around trying to juggle […]

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Returning to the Manchester Mini Maker Faire

August 15, 2014

About a year ago we had a really fun family day out at the Manchester Mini Maker Faire, and decided pretty much as we left that we should definitely go back this year. The date has been in our calendar for a number of months, but unfortunately at the last minute the geekdaddy discovered he […]

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A Photo A Day – Week 32 Roundup

August 10, 2014

After a lovely week at home with the family last week, it’s been a bit more back to normal this week, with me being back at work. The kids are still off school, so we’re trying to juggle childcare, which is always a challenge for working parents. This week my daughter spent two days at […]

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A Photo A Day – weeks 30 and 31 roundup

August 3, 2014

It’s been a busy couple of weeks, with my daughter finishing at school, my son finishing at nursery, and our first full week of the summer holidays, for which I’ve been off work as well. Hence I didn’t get around to posting my photo a day roundup last week, so this week I’m playing catchup […]

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Introducing the #GoUltraLow campaign and the Nissan LEAF

July 31, 2014

When I first heard that the BritMums blogging network were looking for bloggers to test out ultra low emission (electric, plug-in hybrid and extended range) cars over the summer as part of the #GoUltraLow campaign, I put my name forward very eagerly. The geekdaddy and I have been watching the development of electric vehicles very […]

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Teaching kids the importance of secure passwords

July 29, 2014

The geekdaughter is six and a half, and we’re starting to allow her a little more freedom with apps and the Internet. Today she was playing with an app on her iPad which required her to set up a username and password. And gave me the opportunity to teach her a little about password security. […]

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A Tale of Two Sports Days

July 23, 2014

This year the geekson was old enough for the first time to be aware of the existence of Sports Day. We took him to watch his sister for her first school sports day last year, but I think he was mostly unaware of what was going on. This year his pre-school held a sports day […]

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A Photo A Day – Week 29 Roundup

July 20, 2014

Despite my Facebook and Twitter timelines being full of happy status updates from friends whose children have already started their summer holidays, we still have three days of school to go (and two days of nursery for the geekson). We’re into the final countdown though, with my daughter being extremely sad about the end of […]

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My introduction to Hotter Shoes

July 15, 2014

A couple of weeks ago I was invited to visit the Hotter Shoes store in Bury for a special blogger event. This was my first hands-on experience with this particular shoe brand because, despite a number of my friends raving about them, they were never a brand I had considered when I was out shopping for […]

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A Photo A Day – Week 28 Roundup

July 13, 2014

I’m late posting this roundup again this week, which is mostly due to us enjoying a family day out yesterday – we spent all day at the Mini Festival at Oulton Park. I’ll be blogging about this separately as I took LOADS of photos, and couldn’t choose just one for my photo of the day. […]

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