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B&Q SALE NOW ON! Up to 60% off all kitchen doors and drawers fronts. Get an extra 15% off when you spend over £500. Use the code SALE500 for all showroom products and GARDBUILD15 for garden buildings – from Friday 21 to Monday 24 January only. It's the only sale worth talking about!

Hello from Mumsnet Towers...

Where we're all of a literary lather about tonight's Book Club webchat with award-winning author Rose Tremain (Thursday 20 Jan, 8-9.30pm). Do join us (even if you haven't read her new book Trespass yet): it'll be a real treat.

Tomorrow lunchtime, we've our webchat date with EastEnders executive producer Bryan Kirkwood (Friday 21 Jan, 12-1pm). And next week (Monday 24 Jan, 1-2pm), we've Sally Hodges from the Tavistock Centre on child and adolescent mental health (thread opening soon).

Do post your Qs about the use of Nintendo games in schools; we've a Wii-converted teacher all ready to supply the As. And, if you haven't already, please join our Mumsnet Panel – incentives galore for those who do!

Now for this week's parenting news...

Mumsnetter calls on PM to do more for carer families: Downing Street says David Cameron will be writing to Mumsnetter Riven Vincent, after she posted on MN to say she feels cuts in respite help leave her with no choice but to ask social services to take her disabled daughter into care. Vincent, who was visited at home by Cameron after a Mumsnet webchat last year, says, "We simply cannot cope and neither can families up and down the country, just like ours. We are crumbling." (Guardian 19.01.11; read Riven's press statement; join the discussion on Talk)

Call for more pre-school assessment: All pre-school children should be regularly assessed, with the focus put on their social and emotional development, says MP Graham Allen in a new government-commissioned report. This kind of early intervention, says Allen, will improve the lives of vulnerable children and help break the cycle of "dysfunction and under-achievement". Allen also recommends a national campaign to educate people in basic parenting skills. (BBC News 19.01.11; join the discussion on Talk)

BE PAID TO REVIEW MUSIC! Interested in earning extra cash reviewing music online? Slicethepie are looking for mums to give their opinion on new music – to decide whether it gets played on national radio or not. Earn up to £5 per hour. Click here to learn more.

Other stories in brief

Hot threads

Quote of the week: BeerTricksPotter shrugs off the recent influx of fine-feathered males: "Well, they're a bit like pheasants, most of them. They go wandering and clucking over to Feminism and get run over and squashed."

Competitions
Try your luck in 2011 with our January competitions. Here's what you could win:

Don't forget to keep an eye on winners' corner to see if your name comes out of the hat...

JOIN THE MUMSNET PANEL! Interested in taking part in special surveys and product tests that won't appear on Mumsnet Talk (but will be sent to you via email instead)? Incentives galore – and you can opt out at any time. Click here to sign up/find out more.

Aitch's TV round-up: Being Human, Sunday 23 January, BBC3, 9pm
I really don't want you to get the wrong idea about me and Aidan Turner. While I have indeed mentioned him once or twice before, I actually think he's a Terrible, Terrible Actor. (Unless he's playing an Irishman, when the free pass on the accent thing reduces his status to merely Terrible). However, he does manage to sleep inveigle his way into some cracking productions, of which Being Human is easily the finest, and he sure does look purty with his top off, so here we all are again. The brilliantly odd drama returns this week with reformed vamp Mitchell deciding to move to Wales in order to get some peace and quiet. Fear not, George and Nina are going too – and it's not long before a plan is hatched to spring ghosty Annie from Purgatory and get the whole dysfunctional supernatural Scooby Gang back together.
Discuss this show (and others) on our Telly Addicts Talk board.

Recipe of the week: Anon's Slow-cooked smoked paprika beef
Wonderful, cockle-warming, whack-in-the-oven dish. Serve with noodles and seasonal cabbage.
You can review this recipe here - or why not upload one of your own?

That's all from us. See you next week...
Love, MNHQ

FREE TICKETS TO PREVIEW NICOLE KIDMAN'S NEW FILM, RABBIT HOLE! The makers of Rabbit Hole have invited Mumsnetters to preview their film on Sunday 30th January, and and add a review on Mumsnet. Put your name down here - one lucky person will win a Cineworld Annual pass for two, too!

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