Wednesday, 5 December 2018

10 Must-Have Items on a Car Journey with the Kids


Travelling with kids is not easy, especially if they don’t enjoy sitting still for too long! If you are looking for some ways to ensure your next car journey goes more smoothly, we are here to help! We have created a list of 10 essential items to make your next car journey easier and more enjoyable, for both parents and children. 

1.     Car Seat Organiser
Car seat organisers which hang over the back of the front seats are perfect for keeping everything your child needs in the car neatly stored together. They have several pockets and different sized compartments which can be used to keep everything tidy, and ensure it is all within easy reach. Some of these organisers come with tablet holders, so your child can comfortably sit back and watch a movie without struggling to hold it.

2.     Tablet or DVD Player
As noted above, movies are a great way to keep children entertained on long car journeys. Try downloading a few of your child’s favourites before setting off. If you don’t want your child to use a tablet, portable DVD players are fairly inexpensive. They can also be used to play music CDs to keep kids entertained for even longer!

3.     Audio book CDs
If your child wants to relax during the journey, they might enjoy listening to some story CDs. Audiobooks can also be downloaded on a tablet if your car doesn’t have a CD player. Audio books are perfect for young children and toddlers as well as teenagers who will love listening to young adult fiction. Listening to stories makes the journey pass quicker for parents too!

4.     Puzzle Books
Older children will love to have a puzzle book to keep them entertained in the car. You could also try playing games such as spotting different road signs or registration plates, which are fun for all the family! For younger children, colouring books are ideal to keep boredom away when travelling for long periods.

5.     Blanket and Travel Pillow
For children who like to have a nap in the car, a blanket and a travel neck pillow can make sleeping more comfortable. You could bring their favourite blanket from home, or choose a special one to keep in the car, perhaps smaller than the kind they would use in bed.

6.     Spare Clothes and Extra Diapers
When travelling with young children, it is important to always bring more clothes and, if your child wears them, diapers than you think you will need. Keep these items near the top of your bag – you never know when your child will get sick, wet their pants or spill their juice!

7.     Reusable Water Bottles
It’s a good idea to carry a refillable water bottle when travelling, whether you are with the kids or not. This is a more environmentally friendly and cost-effective way of staying hydrated when compared to buying drinks at every stop along the road.

8.     Snack Containers
Children like to eat little and often, so keeping some of their favourite snacks handy will help prevent them becoming hungry and will keep them from getting bored for a while too. It’s helpful if you pack individual snacks in separate tubs so kids can easily find what they fancy. Tubs can also be used to store empty packets as well as unwanted and leftover food.

9.     Wet Wipes and Tissues
If you have young children, you probably know the importance of carrying wet wipes everywhere you go! We recommend keeping them at the top of your bag so they are readily available in case you have to do a big clean up job! It’s also useful to keep a towel or some kitchen paper in the car in case of bigger spillages.

10.  Clothing for all Weathers
If you are travelling a long distance, it’s reasonable to expect the weather might change considerably along the way. Be sure to keep sunscreen, a hat, a wind and rain-proof jacket as well as flip flops to save putting socks and shoes back on when getting out the car, if your child likes to be barefoot in the car.

Author Bio
Emily Dick is a writer and blogger who is currently growing her parenting site Whooopsadaisy. Here, she enjoys writing about a variety of topics ranging everywhere from stroller reviews to tips on finding the perfect gifts for children of all ages. Emily is a mom of one, three-year-old Daisy, who provides inspiration for the blog.


Friday, 14 September 2018

Saving Money Tips for Autumn


When I first started this blog, many years ago, I was very interested in finding out ways we could save money. It always seemed that we didn't have a lot to show for our joint income, and I wanted to be proactive about changing that. As time progressed, partly due to this blog, we found ourselves in a much better financial position, and although we are not by any means rich, we are certainly a lot more comfortably off than 5 or so years ago. I must admit I'm not quite so hot on money saving these days, since it does take a bit of research and time, but with a recent trip to Florida and some house renovations, it definitely wouldn't hurt to be a little more careful in the run up to Christmas. Here are my top tips - this is more for myself! 

1) Take advantage of 'hot deals' websites  - these are a great place to find discount codes and various other offers, I never buy anything without a code!
2) Look at your direct debits - is there anything going out you don't make use of, or need anymore? For example Amazon Prime or your Sky/Cable subscription? These can easily creep up if you don't keep an eye on them.
3) Sell anything you don't need! I always declutter in the run up to Christmas to make room for more plastic tat, I mean lovely presents, so why not make a few pounds in the process?
4) Shop around. I personally support local business where I can, even if it means paying a bit more. But if that's not possible, then definitely do a bit of research before purchasing - it definitely pays off.
5) If you need to make a bigger purchase, look for 0% payment deals (unless you are about to take out a new mortgage or something in which case you probably wouldn't want to take on extra credit!).
6) Certain things I always buy second hand - football boots and wellies are prime examples. They get trashed pretty much instantly anyway, so where's the harm?
7) Look at things like energy providers -  use compare websites to see if you can get cheaper deals.
8) Investigate current accounts that have cash back and/or other benefits - they can make a big difference.

What are your top saving money tips? 

Thursday, 13 September 2018

Fashionable Hi-Vis Workwear

Fashionable Hi-Vis Workwear
Hi-vis workwear is essential to many industries and occupations from the police to cleaner's and people from all walks of life might need to don some hi-vis workwear as part of their job. Hi-vis workwear is celebrated for many reasons, after all, it does a very important job, however, while that might be the case it can't really be denied that hi-vis workwear is not overly fashionable. In fact, some people could argue that fashion goes against what hi-vis workwear is even trying to achieve. It's meant to ensure you are easily visible after all, which is why you will often see hi-vis clothing in very bright and garish colours. But can you get hi-vis workwear that is also fashionable? Well yes you can, although it can't be denied it is a little harder to find in some cases. So let's look beyond the traditional pieces like the thick yellow jackets and hi-vis vests for something a bit more fashionable when it comes to hi vis workwear shall we?
Hi-Vis Polo Shirts If you're looking for something a little more professional and fashionable than a hi-vis jacket or vest but still need that all-important visibility for work then a hi-vis polo shirt is just what you need. The classic polo shirt design and shape has been recaptured and remade with high-quality hi-vis materials. Numerous different brands and manufacturers offer hi-vis polo shirts and they are available in a variety of colours including the classic hi-vis yellow and orange. They are also available in darker colours like blue that still have that all-important extra visibility needed from hi-vis clothing but without being so outlandish. A darker coloured hi-vis polo shirt would make a very smart piece of workwear and would also look very fashionable. Best of all, men and women can both make use of a hi-vis polo in their workplace wardrobes and they are available in both long and short sleeve designs. So, if you're looking for more fashionable hi-vis workwear I strongly recommend checking out the selection of hi-vis polo shirts available.
Two Tone Shirts The hi-vis fashion doesn't just stop with smart polo shirts another great way to make your hi-vis workwear more fashionable is to mix and match with two-tone shirts. Two-tone shirts come in a variety of styles including basic T-shirts and polos but offer a more unusual and eye-catching array of colours. Two-tone shirts have one colour on the lower half of the shirt and another at the top, it's a simple design and pattern but one that works very well. You see it used often enough in more casual clothes and it works brilliantly with hi-vis clothing as well. Mixing dark and bright colours like the classic hi-vis orange or yellow with darker blues might not sound fashionable but it creates a very stylish contrast that actually works very well. And that's just one example of the two-tone colour designs available. So, if you want something a little more unusual and unorthodox from your hi-vis workwear I suggest checking out some hi-vis two-tone shirts.
Hi-Vis Hats Another great suggestion for anyone looking to make their hi-vis work wardrobe a little more fashionable is to try hi-vis hats. A smart cap or beanie can create a more fashionable work look while also increasing your visibility even more! Since many people who wear hi-vis clothing as part of their work will be outdoors, a hat also gives you more protection for the cold and rain. Hi-vis hats come in many colours including the classic yellow and orange but also darker shades as well. The great things about hats are they lend themselves to hi-vis materials very well so to many people they will look just like normal, fashionable casual caps and hats. Hi-vis hats are another great unisex item both men and women can wear as well.
Other Ideas To Try When it comes to fashionable hi-vis workplace attire your options are a little limited although as you've already seen there are some pretty fashionable options available. So, you can wear hi-vis and still look fashionable and professional in the workplace. Some other great ideas to try are hi-vis jewellery, this isn't wildly available in shops but online shops like Etsy are great places to try. A smart hi-vis pendent or brooch can make great additions to workplace outfits. Going for darker colours like blues and blacks is also recommended because it offers something different from the more traditionally seen bright hi-vis colours. And if you know your way around a sewing machine you could also try customising some of your hi-vis outfits to make them a bit more fashionable! This is a featured post.

Thursday, 9 August 2018

What's Your Side Gig?

I'll be honest, one of the reasons I started blogging, aside from the fact that I love writing and wanted to document my family's life by oversharing, is because I wanted to earn some extra money on the "side". A few years into blogging, it lead to job opportunities and friendships that wouldn't have previously been possible. I have now had a total change of career, away from teaching, and specialise in marketing to the education technology sector. How things change eh (sort of)?

Anyway, what this blog post is about, is to give you ideas for ways that you too can earn money on the "side", call it your "side gig" if you will. And hopefully gain new skills, learn new things etc too!

- Think about what you're good, what your passions are - if it's something you really love you are more likely to stick at it.
- What can you make? Are you a budding crafter? Can you make hair clips, or broaches, or door signs for new babies? Anything you can make you can sell at local craft markets for a profit!
- Start a blog! If you get enough traffic you can earn money from google adverts, I don't bother as I simply don't get enough traffic and it's an extra hassle I can do without, but if you're savvy, there are definitely ways to make this happen.
- Tutoring, either online or in person is a good bet if you've a background in teaching, and can definitely only be done in the evening after work. Rates start from £20 an hour.
- Can you design, if you can then learn how to use photoshop, hone your skills and start designing! People always need logos, website headers, facebook cover photos and the like. And it's fun too!
- Freelance! Do what you do in your day job but on the side in the evening and weekends - be open with your employer about it of course, the last thing you want to do is get in trouble at work and ruin any potential opportunities there.
- Manage social media accounts - this isn't actually as easy as it seems, but there are ways to learn, and offering to do it for a friend's business for free is a great way to learn. There are lots of websites and blogs that can help you along the way, as long as friendly and helpful facebook groups.
- Or how about earning money with internet betting? Obviously set your limits and be careful.

Some ideas for you! What's your side gig and did it work out for you?

Wednesday, 16 May 2018

Fashion Fun with Fashion World

I've had a bit of a personal makeover in the past five months and have shed a stone in weight - mostly done in an effort to clean my act up and just feel better generally. The old issue of heartburn has gradually been creeping up on me and it's always due to the same factors - bad diet and stress. Stress is something I am naturally at pains to avoid, so I've joined a local boot camp that I go to fanatically twice a week, as well as following Slimming World diet plans. I am naturally too tight to actually join Slimming World and pay. Also the fact that I am already a size 10 with a healthy BMI - seems a bit of an insult. But anyway, the diet and exercise are making me feel much better, and I've lost a bit of chunk in the process so all good! Anyway, where I'm getting to, is that with this weight loss I have naturally had to invest in some new clothes in my new size - and I jumped at the chance of reviewing some clothes kindly gifted to me by Fashion World - most of their clothes are for plus sizes, but I was able to find a good choice in a size 10, and I was very pleased with the result!

I chose this lovely Soft Tencel Dress (£35) and (forgive the little stain?!) it's just perfect for summer! Nice and loose in case you want a large BBQ, but can be belted in too for "skinny" days. Perfecto.

Soft Tencel Dress from Fashion World £35
Forgive my large and very hideous feet in the shot. It was difficult to get one without my tired face in it.

I was also gifted a swimming costume from Fashion World's swimwear collection which is just PERFECT for mums with a tum. I've been foolish enough recently to opt for swim wear one size too big so it doesn't "cut" into the skin. What I didn't consider is that swimwear needs to be tight for a reason...otherwise it can slip off... I won't include an image of me wearing the swimsuit as it may scare people. But suffice to say I love it.

Fashion World Tummy Tuck Swimsuit £32

I was also gifted a Crinkle Bardot Playsuit. I'm still a bit undecided about playsuits as they can be a pain to get off in public toilets when you've a toddler rolling round the floor in other people's discarded toilet roll. But I think this one will be perfect for beachwear and holidays.

Crinkle Bardot Playsuit £29

Now my shoulders are a bit more sinewy and less round and cuddly I am very much looking forward to baring them when and if the weather ever picks up. Or I could wear this over a polo neck with some tights - what do you think?

All in all I was over the moon with my gifts and intend to wear them during my upcoming holiday.

These items were gifted to me to enable me to complete this review, but all thoughts are my own.

Monday, 12 February 2018

Affordable Decorating Ideas


When you are working with a limited budget, keeping your home looking nice can be challenging. Fortunately, there are lots of ways to redecorate without having to spend a fortune. Here are some of my favorite low-cost home d├ęcor ideas.

Canvas Prints

Firms like hellocanvas.co.uk make it easy to turn your photos into unique works of art to hang on your walls. There is a range of style options, so it is really easy to create the perfect picture for your living room without having to spend a fortune.

Save your spare paint

When you repaint a room, keep any paint that you have leftover. There are lots of ways you can use it up. 

To start with, it is handy for touching up knocks, dings and painting out scuff marks. Sometimes it can be used so that you can put off re-decorating for a few more months. Or, you can use it to create an interesting mural in another room. You do not necessarily have to be very artistic to be able to do this. Stenciling is an approach that works well even for people who cannot draw or paint free-hand. You can download some great free ones here, all you need to do is to print them out and follow the instructions.
Join a local recycling co-operative
If the paint you have leftover is white, you can easily use a specialist dye to turn it the color you want. In some areas, recycling centers collect leftover paint and give it away for free. 

These re-cycling co-operatives can be an excellent source of all kinds of free decorating materials. Many have wood, tiles, grout, cement and other items available. All of which you can potentially put to use. Often, they have carpet cut-offs that can be used as flooring for a small space like a hallway. It is even possible to pick up leftover rolls of wallpaper. You are unlikely to pick up enough to redecorate a whole room, but you can often find enough to decorate a single wall to add a little more interest to a room.

Use second-hand furniture

Second-hand furniture is really easy to find. With a bit of time and care, it is surprisingly easy to give them a makeover and turn them into something that looks fresh and modern. It is not hard to change the look of all kinds of items simply by removing or adding trim. You can easily recover items like dining chairs and rub them down, so they can be re-stained or re-painted.

Use your craft skills

If you enjoy making things learning a few crafts is an excellent idea. It is fun to do and once you get good you can easily make decorative items for your home and those of your friends. Potentially, you can make wall-hangings, ornaments, and soft-furnishing items.

Buy second hand equipment

When you need a tool or piece of equipment to carry out a decorating task see if you can borrow it or buy something second-hand. You will save a surprising amount of money by doing this. 


Tuesday, 23 January 2018

Boden Bargains and Happy with Hush!

I have discovered something about Boden recently which I am ashamed to say I didn't already know. If you look in their girls range, and select ages 15/16 you can get clothes that are approximately a size 10! Alright some of their clothing is blatantly aimed at children even though it comes in age 16 (which is weird) but I ventured a look in the shoe/boots category today in the sale, and was pretty happy to see a pair of leather brown chelsea boots for £18 in my mammoth size!

They've sold out now, but I did spot this cute pair of leather boots for £28 which I thought was a good buy, especially as they are leather.

Fun Leather Boots
They had quite a few other nice bits as well definitely worth a look in the girls shoes clearance category.

I've been after some comfortable yet semi stylish jeans for ages - but alas everything smart looking is skinny, and everything boyfriend cut has holes in it. So I happened upon these girlfriend jeans at Boden for £26 and really like the look of them. The reviews are mixed, but I have high hopes.

Cavendish Girlfriend Jeans

Onto Hush! I'm fairly new to this brand, but ever since the opening of a John Lewis in Leeds I've been able to see Hush clothes in the flesh so to speak, and I love the feel of their high quality jersey. I've been wearing their Harem trousers for ages, and I must say they are starting to bobble slightly, but then they do get washed rather a lot.  Anyway I was in Leeds the other day and saw the Ivy dress on the sale rack, they only had the medium in stock which looked huge, but I loved the feel of the dress and again it gets good reviews on the website. I've been looking for something nice to wear over some pleather leggings from Mint Velvet and I think this fits the bill perfectly! I'm not a huge fan of the green colour but the burgundy colour is much nicer - on me anyway. They don't have any smalls left at Hush but they do on the John Lewis website, definitely worth a look.

Image result for hush ivy dress

Onto the subject of pleather, these are my current fav, and at £9 a bit of a bargain too from Mint Velvet.



And finally, not so much a bargain as a WANT, but not sure I can justify the price just yet. I already have these Kurt Geiger boots in the tan and I just LIVE in them. They have become a little worn of late, probably because I need to look after them better, and I noticed there was also a black pair available. In truth I still think the tan pair are nicer but black is good right? Reduced from £169 to £129.

Image result for kurt geiger slow boots

Image result for kurt geiger slow boots



Anyway, that's all for now. What have you bought recently?


Monday, 15 January 2018

Changes and New Fashions!

Hello readers, I'm back!

I must admit posting has been rather sporadic of late, and I've had some pretty major changes in my life in the past few months that will hopefully give me more blogging time - here's hoping! After 9 years of being a working mum, my husband and I decided it was time to focus on the here and now a bit more, at least for the short term, so I'm taking a "sabbatical" from working to concentrate on family life a bit more and gain some head space. I actually have a lot more respect for stay at home mums now - it certainly isn't the easy option. But it does remove the stresses of deadlines, line managers and having to be in a certain place at a certain time, and all the childcare implications that goes along with that.  I was actually talking to a mum at school the other day about my decision and she said, "you know, I'm relieved. I've just done the same thing and I felt so guilty about it, and embarrassed. But you're a proper professional and if you've done it, it gives me the green light to feel ok about it too." This made me sort of sad, that as women and mothers we have to explain and justify our decisions to others. There's a great saying I saw on the internet recently, that we work hard to buy stuff we don't need, to impress people we don't like. In my mind, any true friend of mine would not judge me for deciding to spend more time with my children over making money - though in the past this was due to necessity rather than choice - and my heart goes out to those families who would love to have one parent "stay at home" but can't afford to go down that road. Equally I respect those who choose to work because it's their passion, or staying at home just isn't for them. Horses for courses!

Anyway! Enough about that, and onto fashion!

One of the downsides of course about no longer having a paying job, is that there is less money coming in, yet I seem to spend more! Anyway, I wanted to introduce you to David Nieper, who have some lovely pieces - albeit possibly aimed at the older age group. The David Nieper Tunics have particularly caught my eye - here's my top picks!

4650 - Stretch Jersey Tunic

This stretch jersey tunic is smart and perfect for office or home - dressed up or down. I'm a huge fan of jersey in general as it wears and washes well, and is so comfortable whilst being super smart.



I saw this and immediately thought - teacher top! Smart, eye catching and easy to move around in. I also love the bluey green colouring - lovely!



I love this as a top to wear with black smart trousers and nice accessories - I see this as more of a going out top but perfectly acceptable for work too.

David Nieper also have some very cosy cashmere and lambswool knits which look excellent quality. And I love their loungewear too - perfect for new mums!

Another location for great fashion goods is Top Tier Style!

New post coming soon!

This is a featured post.


Monday, 8 January 2018

Milestones in Teething Relief: Baltic Amber


We love the joy of seeing our children grow through milestone after milestone. Finding their own fingers. Smiling. Giggling. Rolling over. Crawling. Every one of them takes hard work to achieve, but none is more difficult on both parent and child than cutting new teeth through tender gums. Knowing that the pain in their little mouth is simply part of this important developmental step doesn’t diminish our desire to soothe it. 

Most of us were probably handed teething rings and frozen washcloths when we were going through the trauma of cutting teeth. Possibly our parents gave us drops of acetaminophen or ibuprofen to calm the pain and inflammation.  Like every generation of new parents, ours were making the best use of the best tools available to them to provide the best experiences they could for their children.

Time, however, has revealed some down-sides to things we once believed to be best practices. Teething toys may cause small cuts in the gums, creating an infection risk. Frozen items are too cold to be safe for the tender skin around the mouth. Medicines, while effective in providing pain relief, may have side-effects on other body systems.

Today’s parents have the benefit of building on the knowledge of generations past, keeping what is good, discarding what is not, and finding solutions that work best with the understanding we have gained. Rather than offering frozen washcloths, pediatricians now recommend soft washcloths, wetted with water, and simply chilled in the refrigerator as an alternative, safe teething chew-toy. It is cool enough to offer relief, but not so cold that it will cause skin damage. The soft material also poses no risk of cutting the gums.

But what about a better alternative to pain-relieving and anti-inflammatory medications? These were the only tools that provide long-term relief from teething symptoms, allowing parents to take relatively happy children about their daily routine without carrying about dripping cloths in ice-packed coolers.

Baltic Amber is quickly stepping up to fill this role of portable, long-term relief. In studying safe, natural means of reducing pain and inflammation, Baltic amber quickly rose to the forefront as a time-tested option. Used for centuries – from Old World Europe in hot baths to ease arthritis pain to modern day medical preparations to treat muscle spasms – this fossilized tree resin has proven to have pain-relieving and anti-inflammatory properties. In all of those years of usage, Baltic amber has also proven to be free of systemic side-effects.

As Baltic amber is warmed (by being worn against the teething baby’s skin as a necklace), it releases succinic acid. This acid is absorbed through the skin and delivered to painful, inflamed gums through the bloodstream, where it gives lasting relief. Parents who use these teething necklaces report less crying, less chewing for pain relief, less drooling, less gum inflammation, and better sleep patterns. All of this is achieved by simply wearing a properly-fitted necklace of natural tree resin underneath baby’s clothing! You can find a genuine Baltic amber necklace at http://BalticWonder.com/.


Teething may be one of the most difficult milestones in a child’s development, but it doesn’t have to be utterly miserable. This generation of parents has the benefit of better knowledge and products made with greater understanding. It’s a great time to be a teething toddler! 



This is a featured post.

Friday, 6 October 2017

Perfect Lingerie from UK Lingerie!

One of the side effects of having three children, and I don't care what anyone says, is that your body is definitely impacted long term. I've found it harder to stay in shape since the birth of our third child - probably due to tiredness and lack of time, but one of the other effects of this is that clothes that I have loved and hoped to keep forever, no longer fit. This of course, definitely extends to underwear as well. In fact - more so than any other item.

I've always been an M and S kind of girl when it comes to undies - I've tried elsewhere but nothing is every comfortable enough. But I've started to wonder if it's the kind of thing you've just got to spend a decent amount of money on. After all, there's nothing worse than wearing an uncomfortable bra is there? Therefore I was pretty happy to be approached by www.uklingerie.com to see if I wanted to choose something from their wonderful range. I of course, said yes! This might sound like a weird choice, but I opted for a non underwired bra - I work from home and to be honest just want something mega comfortable but also pretty to wear. When you're sitting down all day on your own, what is the point in wearing an underwired bra - especially when you don't have much to underwire in the first place! I also chose some Spanx pants - I quite like wearing ruched and fitted pencil style skirts, and don't really have anything mega suitable to wear under them. I was a bit worried as I've heard about people not being able to breathe etc whilst wearing pants like that, but I guess it's just about wearing the right size.

I was really happy to receive my order the very next day after ordering - incredible! And here's what I got...

Aubade the Art of Kissing Bra - get yours here

Spanx Undie Tectable Hipster Briefs - get yours here





I LOVE LOVE LOVE them! The Aubade bra came with beautiful packaging and you can really feel and see the difference between this kind of item and something from M and S - the lace is exquisite, it's super comfortable and I am wearing it to death already. The Spanx I have already worn twice - both times under a pencil skirt and they create a super smooth line. I actually forgot I was wearing them, though I'm not sure it's the kind of thing I would wear round the house - though that's not what they're made for anyway.

All in all I really recommend this site if you want to look at a huge selection of lingerie at a huge range of prices. These were on the expensive side, but there are options to suit every budget.

I received these items for free in order to complete this review, although all thoughts are my own.

Thursday, 28 September 2017

Welsh Gifts from Brinley Williams

Living with three Wales rugby fans has its bonuses - alcohol on big match days for example, but you can't be a real fan without the kit can you? We've got various t shirts, kids, outfits etc, but the boys complain they are sweaty and uncomfortable. Therefore, I was pretty happy to receive two lovely personalised Wales Rugby T shirts from BrinleyWilliams.co.uk. They are really cosy and comfortable, and best of all I was able to get them personalised with the boys' names - kudos to me!






Not only that, there are loads of other cute Welsh gifts on site - I particularly like these.

A Fish called Rhondda Welsh Film Poster

Bridge over the River Wye Welsh Film Poster
Anyone can Cuddle Ladies T shirt

Very cute! If like me, you struggle to know what fun gifts to buy for your family - and they happen to be Welsh, then I really recommend Brinley Williams - just takes the thinking out of it! I actually really like the back story of how Brinley Williams came to be - you can read about it here. It really is a story of triumph over adversity and I love supporting cottage industries that are borne out of a real passion for doing something really well. Definitely one to look into!

Thursday, 3 August 2017

New EPIC Baby Store!

I do love a bit of shopping, and to be there is far less guilt to be had when shopping for someone else - especially when that person happens to be my own child. For ages now, I've been in dire need of a new changing bag, but as it was a personal purchase, I didn't think it was worth spending money on. Yes my old one had mouldy food in and had a weird smell, but I only use it once a week on a Friday anyway. However a few weeks ago, I decided enough was enough and just chucked it and started carrying baby girl's stuff around in - carrier bags! So when fantastic new retailer (they've been online for ages, just not "in the flesh" Kiddies Kingdom gave me the chance to review a new Cosatto Changing Bag, it seems like perfect timing!

Kiddies Kingdom have just launched their new concept store in Dewsbury, West Yorks and their showroom will be the largest of all things baby related in the North of England. There is a full sized car inside where parents can fit a car seat in a much more practical way, and baby wish lists so that willing relatives can contribute towards the bucket loads of stuff always needed for new arrivals. Kiddies Kingdom also have a cute embroidery service so that purchases can be personalised - cute!

The showroom has over 150 top brands including ICandy, Silver Cross, Joolz and Joie etc, and has lots of great offers on this week (the opening week). If you're not able to make it in person this week for the great opening offers, you can always come down at a later date as they offer a price match guarantee.

Now onto the bag, I LOVE IT! Here it is in the flesh. I love the pop art-ness of it, and actually it doesn't particularly look like a "baby bag" which for me, is a good thing. Inside there is a smaller zipped pocket for keys, phone etc, and a large front pocket for quick access to nappies and wipes. It also includes a handy folding changing mat, really useful for emergencies.




As you can see it fits shed loads in it, and I do like to pack a lot in.

Head on down to Kiddies Kingdom this week, take a look at their current offers here.

I was offered a free Cosatto changing bag in order to help me write this review, but all thoughts are my own.

Sunday, 9 July 2017

Perfect Shoes from Simply Be

For ages now I've been trying to identify "my shop" - something that basically takes all the thinking out for me so I can just pop in, buy, go home, everyone's happy. However I am starting to realise now, that such a shop just doesn't exist. For me, it's pretty much impossible to get everything I want from one shop - some shops do great jersey wear but not so great jeans, some shops do awesome dresses but less awesome shoes. The list goes on. The good part of this is that it forces me to go out of my comfort zone and try something new every once in a while, which I did when I shopped at Simply Be!

Wide Fit

Simply Be is perfect for those, who like me have larger than average feet. It's rare for me to meet anyone with feet as large as mine, but Simply Be caters for me perfectly by having not only wide fit, but extra wide too! Have a look at their flat shoes selection here. I was lucky enough to be sent a lovely pair of perfect summer shoes from Simply Be and wherever I go, people are asking me, where are your shoes from? Here they are, and they are now reduced to just £14.40! Unbelievable value in my opinion. They are called Sole Diva Heart Ballerina shoes, in case you're interested. The photo really doesn't do them justice and they are just perfect for pretty much every occasion, they are also super comfortable. Please excuse the scrub land in the background!

Sole Diva Heart Ballerina £14.40

Summer Dress


I was also gifted two dresses - both of which are quite different but nevertheless lovely The first is the Navy Stripe Jersey Maxi Dress - I'm a bit of a fan of jersey dresses in general as they wash so well and are generally so comfortable and wearable, and I've been looking for something I can "throw on" for ages - perfect for beach, BBQ or popping out. Really love this and I can see my wearing it forever.

Navy Stripe Jersey Maxi Dress £25

Prom Dress


As well as the jersey dress I was also set this divine Mint and Black Printed Prom Dress - I've been wanting an off the shoulder dress for ages, and although this photo doesn't capture that wonderfully well, I can attest that the top does for once, stay well and truly off the shoulder without being super annoying! It sits really well and is comfortable enough to wear around the house as well as being smart enough to wear out. I could even see me wearing it for work. The fabric is a bit different to what I'm used to but it fits like a dream!

Mint and Black Printed Prom Dress - £44
And you can see I'm wearing the perfect shoes as well! I'm actually going to buy another pair - ready for next year, before they sell out.

These items were gifted to me in return for this review, but all thoughts are my own.

Sunday, 19 March 2017

Jacamo - for men!

Hubby and I rarely get to go into actual shops, that is well documented on my blog. When the rare occasion does happen, we race round like animals desperately picking up some vaguely flattering clothes for ourselves, occasionally grunting at the other - "what do you think of this?" and pretending to care what the other person is holding up for us to approve of. So, we've just decided not to bother anymore, as it's too stressful and rarely fruitful - and anyway, online shopping is SO easy, plus you get a better pick of sizes and styles, and if you don't like what you see, you can just pop it in the post and send it back! Easy!

So when we were offered the chance to try men's clothing retailer Jacamo, it was pretty exciting - especially for hubby, since this is specifically a men's store. He's a bit of  a being of the nineties, so has been after some decent "indie" trainers for ages - having teeny tiny feet (for a man) has some advantages - namely that we can share shoes. But for those with larger feet, Jacamo has a good range of wide fitting shoes - something that is hard to find on the high street. Anyway, hubby chose these fabulous puma trainers - and what's more - they're on next day delivery too. Very handy for those who are short of time (namely, us).

90s tastic but still awesome.

We will mow the grass one day.
I thought these were really good value and there were also other colours available,  but he went for this classic sort of racing green look, as it looks great with anything - especially jeans.

As we spend a lot of time in the freezing cold either chasing round a 1 year old or stamping our feet trying to keep warm whilst watching Rugby/waiting to pick up our children from various places, we often substitute style for warmth and practicality - surely a sign of getting old? Anyway, if we have to be warm, we may as well look as cool as possible, so hubby also opted for this Jack Wolfskin fleece - another great thing about Jacamo is that they do lots and lots of brands - as well as their own brand stuff - so you can get practically anything! We love Jack Wolfskin as it combines practicality with a nice smart look.



This is a great option for wearing underneath a thicker coat for really cold days, or with a gillet on slightly warmer days. Sadly as we live in what seems like the coldest micro climate in Britain, this is as warm as it generally gets.

So, big fans of Jacamo in this house! Great selection of different clothing ranges, next day delivery, great website, what more could you want?

I was gifted these items to enable me to write this post, but all thoughts are my own.

Thursday, 16 February 2017

15 ways to express your love this Valentine’s Day

                       

Valentine’s day, the day of love, which falls on 14th February every year is celebrated by the couple all across the globe. As Valentine ’s Day is around the corner, people have started looking for creative ways to surprise their loved ones and exhibit their feelings. Many people believe that by giving expensive and personalised gifts, they can express how valuable their loved ones are in their life. However, contrary to the popular belief that gifts are the best ways to express your love, there are many other romantic ways that help you express your love with some simple day to day gestures, which mean a lot.

Here are the top 15 ways with which you can express your feelings towards your loved ones and celebrate Valentine’s Day:

1. Send your partner a sweet and sweet message on the day. You can also send a love filled email.
2. Leave a little love note in his/her bag, briefcase or lunch box so that they find it when they reach their workplace. This little gesture will make them smile in the middle of a stressful work day.
3. Plan a surprise outing. You can book a table in his/her favourite restaurant and order their favourite food while spending some quality time together.
4. Send some beautiful flowers or yummy cookies to their workplace or home for no reason on days other than the Valentine’s Day, to celebrate random days as the day of love.
5. Drop by in your partner’s office at the lunch time and enjoy a meal together.
6. Offer your partner a foot rub or light foot massage without asking for one in return. This will surely make them happy.
7. Make a delicious and scrumptious breakfast in bed, and surprise them.
8. Plan to start a hobby together on the Valentine’s Day, so that you can spend quality time together with each other more often.
9. Do some errands or chores which your partner is supposed to do, without being asked to do so. This little gesture will certainly express your love.
10. Leave a love note on the bathroom mirror or on your bedroom’s dressing table.
11. Have a romantic photo session at a beautiful location. Don’t forget to make it a bit sexy.
12. Buy a personalised gift like a keychain, a coffee mug, a picture frame or something that your partner likes.
13. Plan a candle lit dinner at your home, decorate the space with flower petals and enjoy a quiet evening together.
14. Subscribe the monthly subscription of your partner’s favourite magazine or subscription box filled will amazing goodies
15. Arrange a spa and grooming session for your partner in their favourite saloon.

If you are looking for some amazing ideas to surprise your loved ones, and make this Valentine’s Day a memorable one, you can check some of the ideas given in the following infographic created by “My Voucher Codes”. My voucher Codes are an online discount codes and shopping deals site that offers its visitors the best codes and deals using which they can save money while shopping from eStores, eating out or enjoying day outs.

Friday, 27 January 2017

January end of sale - ultra sale!


I have been waiting right until the last possible moment to get the best sale bargains - but unfortunately I seem to have left it SO long, that nearly all the sizes are gone. Anyway, from the leftovers, here are my top pics!

1) Baukjen Fleur Top  - £11



I have this in black and it looks great with jeans.

2) Baukjen Bailey Dress £19



Not sure when I'd wear this - but big big bargain!

3) Baukjen Sian Roll Neck Jumper £41



Warm and stylish.

4) Hush Crossover Skirt £25



Perfect for work or going out - and super comfy!

5) Jack Wills Brotherlee Zip Up Hoodie £34.95



I tried to beat the system on this one and order the man's style as it was £10 cheaper but it was a very weird fit on me!

6) Jack Wills Austerberry Blazer £69



Not many sizes left but these are big - so I reckon you'd be ok with an 8 if you're normally a 10-12.

I'm not sure why I chose 6, but these have really caught my eye and are genuine bargains - if you can find the right size. I will keep on looking and see else I find!










Sunday, 20 November 2016

JD Williams My New Favourite Shop!

For some time now, I've been toying with the idea that I need a new favourite shop. In days gone by it was mega easy, I just bought all my clothes in Oasis. I still buy the odd thing in there, but truth be told, it's a bit young for me now. For a while now I've been all about Baukjen, but of late I've been buying Baukjen clothes as and when on ebay to save money with varying degrees of success. Shoes are something I continue to struggle with, due to my enormous clown feet, but I think I may have found the answer - in the shape of  JD Williams! Not a brand I am that familiar with, but when I was offered the chance to review some of their clothing, I jumped at the chance, and I must say I was hugely surprised and impressed. 

"JD Williams has an emphasis on contemporary women's styling ranging from sizes 12-32 and we're constantly developing our collections to bring you the latest looks that will keep you on-trend throughout the season. With our brand ambassador Lorraine Kelly choosing her favourite pieces, we're making shopping for plus size clothes, lingerie and wide fit shoes and boots fun, easy and enjoyable regardless of age, size and shape."

Even though I'm a size 10, I still found plenty to choose from, and my massively huge feet were in seventh heaven as there were so many sizes and widths - I've never seen anything like this before and I like it! I decided to choose some knee high boots and went for the best seller - Heavenly Soles Boots priced at £50. I had a huge choice of sizes and fittings, and JD Williams even have a handy sizing guide (which actually works incredibly well) to ensure you get exactly the right fit, as it can sometimes be tricky buying boots online. As you can see from the buckles, the boots are fully adjustable to fit the size of your calves, and are also amazing comfortable and warm. I have already worn these boots loads including on a cold and wet rugby pitch, doing the school run, and also to the office - they are truly a multi functioning boot. They look great with skinny jeans but also kilt style skirts or leggings. I can see no signs of wear so far and I have a feeling they will last me ages.


Heavenly Soles £50
Here you can see me going for a casual stroll in our front garden wearing not only my boots but also my new denim jacket from the women's winter coats range - or should I say one  of my new denim jackets - but more on that later. Funnily enough, the jacket looked a little different to the photo on the website in real life, but I love it anyway. I think that this colour denim is really smart and looks great with a dress and boots. 

Western Style Denim Jacket £30

To keep super warm, as you can see in this picture I am wearing a black polo neck jumper underneath as well as my trusty Warehouse dress. The jacket doesn't hinch in at the sides like it does in the website photo but that might just be down to sizing.

Jacket £30, Boots £50
I like doing up the top button to make it look really smart.

Add caption

Aha and here you can see the stone wash jacket - same style, different colour. I like this for a more dressed down look, and it actually has a slightly different shape to the indigo version. For £30 this is incredible value, you would be hard pushed to find a jacket of this quality for the same price elsewhere. In this picture, you also get a sneaky peek of my second pair of boots from JD Williams...


Western Style Jacket in Stone Wash £30
I was lucky enough to be able to choose a second pair of boots so I went for these Cushion Walk Ankle Boots which were also £30.  Again, these came in wide fit, so I was able to choose my size really confidently knowing that they would just fit - which they did. I've had brown boots in this style before so I decided to go for grey this time, and I'm glad I did. They go with everything, and are as comfy and cosy as slippers whilst looking so stylish as well. I've already tried these in wet weather and they held out really well - unlike another similar pair of boots I bought a few years ago that instantly collapsed at even a sniff of rain.  I am thrilled with these! I like nothing more than having super warm feet and these really fit the bill. Whoop! I keep having to remind myself that these boots are only £30, they look like much more expensive boots - definitely something to think about.

I noticed that JD Williams do lots of offers for new members, so I really recommend that you take a look.

These look brand new but I've already worn them loads, I'm impressed with how well they have lasted.


Jacket and boots total cost £60

I've been really impressed with JD Williams and the huge range they have. Definitely worth a look, especially if you are over a size 12 (or even if you're not) or have larger feet, like me!

I was gifted these items by JD Williams in order to write this post, but all thoughts are my own.




Friday, 18 November 2016

Every Day is Black Friday

It's definitely Christmas shopping time. As a person who once loved shopping,  I now find doing it in person, in actual shops and exhausting, fruitless experience - mainly because I got really hot, my nose runs constantly (no idea why this is but friends report the same experience), I hate queuing, I can never find my size and I dislike carrying heavy bags. Add three children into the mix and a distinct lack of time and you've got a recipe for disaster. So, for the past few years, I have done ALL my shopping online, every single bit. Even down to wrapping paper and sellotape. It's far more restful, I spend less, I get exactly what I want and I save money by shopping around and comparing prices.

Speaking of comparing prices, it can take the fun out of things a bit, and these days there are so many great price comparison and sale sites you can save even more time - and money.

Today I want to show you a new site called, Every Day is Black Friday - they say,

"There are hundreds of web shops that have very good discounts every day, sometimes even 90% off, but the problem is that a normal person will never have enough time to visit all websites and check whether the product they are looking for is on sale or not. Therefore, I have created a clever, powerful software that can do all the job in the background - it visits the retailer websites on a regular basis, and checks the prices of their products every 24 hours."


You can sign up for email alerts, premium features and more - what a great idea, especially for busy parents. Not only that, but for relevant retailers, you can also see current offer codes. The beauty of this, is that if you want to get a great deal, you can now find all your favourite retailers in one place, which saves you from going from site to site. 


I had a look at the Argos sale, as it has something for everyone. Here are my favourites picks:-



VTech Track was £14.99 now £11.99 - great fun!



Soulet play set - was £199.99, now £156.99 - maybe one to save for the Summer




Motorised bike - £39.99 - push the pedal and this drives itself along!


Table football - was £69.99 now £39.99 - great value AND fun!

There are absolutely loads of online retailers on Every Day is Black Friday - and this is the perfect time of year to try it out - you could save loads of money and time - win/win!

This is a sponsored post, but all thoughts are my own.

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