Life • August 29, 2018

Having a fun Summer with Coca-Cola Great Britain.

You may have seen a few weeks ago that we are partnering with Coca-Cola Great Britain over the next few months as part of their parent blogger panel, and we are on a family mission to learn more about sustainable packaging and plastic use. Coca-Cola is looking at more ways to encourage more people to recycle its bottles so that it can turn them into new bottles. As I said in my introduction post while as a family we do our bit to try and recycle we could definitely do more and be educated further, therefore I am so thrilled that Coca-Cola asked us to work with them. It’s no secret that I am a big Diet Coke fan and I am really excited – in all honesty I’m quite honoured – to be working with one of the world’s biggest (and one of my favourite) brands.

For this post Coca-Cola Great Britain has challenged us to ‘upcycle our summer’ (plus they have a very exciting partnership that I will tell you about shortly). They have challenged us to have some fun with our used plastic bottles before we recycle them. Obviously we are now well in the throes of the summer holidays and I had a little look online to see what fun activity we could do with the children involving our used plastic bottles. I saw an idea for creating plastic bottle penguins and I knew that the girls would love doing this. They love doing anything remotely crafty and I thought this would be a perfect activity to do one afternoon while Wren was napping. I thought I would show you how we did it below-

Plastic Bottle Penguins

You will need-

Your used plastic bottle

Cotton Wool (cotton wool can’t be recycled so if you would prefer use tissue paper)

Black card or felt (for the penguins feet,wings and head)

Orange card or felt (for the penguins nose)

Googly eyes

Black Feathers



How to do it

1.Put a layer of black card or felt around the bottle cap to make the penguins head, before gluing it.

2.Cut out arms and legs using your card/felt and stick them in the relevant places.

3.Add your feather to the top of your penguin.

4.Add your googly eyes and that’s it you are done!

It’s such a simple craft to do but my girls had so much fun creating their plastic bottle penguins, plus it is another great way to teach children the importance of reusing and/or recycling our plastic bottles. It’s a way of doing the right thing with your plastic bottles that doesn’t have to be boring. We are on a bit of a family mission to learn more about ways we can help with recycling waste and I think crafts like this really help to show children that recycling and thinking about plastic waste can be fun.

An exciting partnership- Coca-Cola Great Britain and Merlin Entertainments

Coca-Cola recently launched an exciting new partnership for the summer with Merlin Entertainments. They are working with them to instantly reward those who return and recycle their plastic bottles on-the-go. They have installed ‘reverse vending machines’ across four of their attractions- Alton Towers Resort, Thorpe Park Resort, Chessington World of Adventures and LEGOLAND Windsor. People are able to exchange ANY empty 500ml plastic bottle at any one of these reverse vending machines- not just Coca-Cola bottles- and will instantly be rewarded with a voucher to receive 50 percent off the cost of entry at any one of these four locations. The partnership is one of the first reverse vending machine trials in the UK, offering an instantly redeemable reward, and is aligned to Coca-Cola’s broader sustainability packaging strategy.

We all know the summer holidays can be expensive and trying to find ways to entertain the kids can be tricky. The partnership between Coca-Cola Great Britain and Merlin Entertainments is a perfect way to help relieve some of the costs for families, especially if you were planning to visit one of these attractions during the summer, whilst also helping to educate children on the importance of recycling. It’s such a simple idea but so clever really.

We were really excited to head to Alton Towers (we haven’t been for years and the children were little so they didn’t remember it) to check out the reverse vending machines in action (of course we were armed with our plastic bottles).

Putting our bottles into the reverse vending machine. It is such a clever idea, you instantly get a ticket that is 50% off your ticket price (You don’t need a ticket for Alton Towers for under 3’s but Wren wanted a go anyway!).

It was such a beautiful sunny day at the weekend and we had so much fun. I have been to Alton Towers a few times when I was younger and we took the girls once, but they were very little and wouldn’t remember it, so it was great to go as a family and enjoy it. We had such a nice day and we felt there was things there that catered to all ages- that’s the beauty of Alton Towers. There’s CBeebies Land for the little ones (although Maddie and Lottie loved it too), there was slightly more thrill family friendly rides that Maddie was tall enough to do (I recommend the brand new Wicker Man ride, Thirteen, Runaway Mine Train and the Congo River Rapids), plus of course you have your big thrill rides like Nemesis, Oblivion and Smiler (I have done all these before but as we were there as a family Jon and I didn’t go on them this time).
We also ate in the new Rollercoaster Restaurant which was amazing. Your order at iPads on the table and then the food comes down to you on a rollercoaster. It was good fun and the kids loved it. It is quite expensive but then theme parks generally are- we counteracted this by bringing our own drinks and snacks into the park with us.
Look at these happy faces.
A necessity.
For the first time EVER in my life I won something at one of those fairground type stalls. As we walking past we saw that you could win one of these big cuddly unicorns that had sprinkles all over them and an ice cream cone for a horn and I just had to try as it went with their bedroom decor perfectly. I actually won! I couldn’t believe it and I had two such happy little girls who cuddled the appropriately named ‘Sprinkle’ all day long.

It got a little much for some.
My new favourite photo. I love this one of the two of them so much. Maddie looks so grown up.
CBeebies land selfie- oh how times have changed!

We had such a great day at Alton Towers, I wish we had longer and it hadn’t shut at 6pm. It was one of those perfect family days where you all just have so much fun (bar a few tired meltdowns but that’s part and parcel of days out with kids in this heat). I would love to go back again one day and maybe even stay at the hotel as it was just brilliant- although the warm nice weather definitely helped, last time we went it chucked it down with rain and it wasn’t such a pleasant experience!

The Coca-Cola reverse vending machines are such a good idea and I hope that this post inspires you to head down there with your family. Of course theme park days out can be expensive, but if you take advantage of this brilliant offer plus pack a picnic (which we saw so many people doing) it doesn’t have to cost the earth. And it honestly is so much fun, I definitely think it is my favourite theme park in the UK.

Thanks so much to Coca-Cola Great Britain for helping us find ways to make our family summer that little bit more fun!



NB: We are working with Coca-Cola Great Britain on this partnership over the course of the next few months. However all opinions, creative controls and content are entirely my own.

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