We've been living in our current home for over 5 years now and still to this day we are wanting and needing to change so many things. But I must admit, compared to the first day we moved into today, so much has changed and I am so happy with all the added touches too. I personally think adding little personal touches to a house makes it feel more like home. Whether it's a duvet cover, house plants, photo frames or even a nice new sideboard. I always like to add my personality into each room.
Wayfair got in touch a few weeks ago asking if I'd like to review a few items from their website. I instantly said yes and I am overly pleased with every single item. I thought instead of going for one large item within the budget, I would go for a few little things that would go great around the house. I also chose things that have been on my 'to buy list' for a long time too. Here are a few home updates, along with the items I received from Wayfair:
B A T H R O O M A couple of years ago our kitchen ceiling collapsed, which meant we had to re-do our bathroom as we discovered there was a lot of damp from the bath, which was one of the reasons our kitchen ceiling fell down. We decided to have a new bath fitted, re-tile and re-paint. We are yet to find the right sink and toilet to replace the ones we currently have, but for now, they will do.
Something that's lacked in the bathroom, is storage. We do have some storage cupboards but they are very awkward and I use them to keep our towels. The room lacked storage to keep cleaning products, toilet tissues and other little bits. This is where the Antenore Free Standing Bathroom Cabinet has come in handy. I have managed to store a lot of things in there such as some of my cleaning products, toilet tissue and much more. It's made the room feel brighter and slightly more modern too. I've always wanted a grey and white kind of theme for my bathroom and this cabinet mixes in perfectly with the 'theme'. Another plus side, the cabinet is not only great for storage but it's great quality and at a great price too.
K I D S B E D R O O M If you follow me on Instagram, you may know that I am in the middle of re-decorating the girls' bedroom. It's been put on hold now for a couple of months because life has been super busy these last few months. However, I'm not really going for a theme for their room. I am painting the room white, grey and a light pink but their little touches are going to be their personalities and things they like, such as these two single duvet covers they received from Wayfair.
If you're a long-time follower/reader of my blog you will know that Mia's favourite animals are horses. So I thought this Noveltext Horse Duvet would be perfect for her. There's a choice of a pink or white and I decided to go for the white background, which has different and bright colour horses on top.
For Elliw, I decided to go for this Zoomie Kids Coppola Duvet Cover which comes with a super cool Unicorn pillowcase. It's a double sided cover with one side being white with the words 'Believe in Miracles' at the bottom and the other side all pink with unicorns. It brings out brightness and colour to the room and most of all, both girls adore their new covers.
M Y R O OM My bedroom is the room that has taken the longest to sort out over the years. But we are slowly getting there. Our main wall used to have a black and gold tree wallpaper until we decided to cover up and paint it in Saphire Blue. I do think I'll be changing the colour again to something brighter but the room does feel pretty warm with this navy.
I decided to go for a new duvet cover and I chose the King Size Devonshire Percale Duvet Cover Set and from the second I saw it I fell in love with it. Again, like the other two duvet covers, this one is double sided with different pattern/print. I currently have the navy side up and it just brings some more warmth to the room and it feels cosy. Choosing a nice duvet definitely adds a fab touch to the room.
K I T C H E N Our kitchen will probably be one of the last rooms to get re-done, but we have re-painted the cupboard doors and I am slowly adding a few personal touches. I've never known what kind of 'theme' I really wanted for the kitchen but I am slowly going towards the white and copper accessories because my kettle and toaster are white and copper, and I love them.
I chose this amazing Damascus 5 Piece Knife Block Set in white and copper and I've fallen in love with it. The holder is plastic but it's still good quality for the price. The set includes your usual 5 piece knife set such as your bread knife, utility knife and the rest. The handles have a good grip and I am very pleased with the set.
- Wayfair kindly gifted me the items mentioned above for this collaboration.
Father’s Day is just around the corner and it’s that time of year where we go and find the best gifts for the Dads and Grandfather’s in our life. It’s a day I especially love celebrating. If you know me personally, or if you’ve followed me for a while you may know that I was brought up by my Dad. There’s a long story behind it, but cutting it short, he took on single-parenting and took on both roles of parenting very unexpectedly and he’s done amazing.
I think Father’s Day is a day we should celebrate Dads and Grandfathers out there and thank them for everything that they have done. But also not forgetting the Step-Father’s out there too. My partner is a Step-Dad to my eldest, and has done for over 7 years now. He has been amazing with her since the first day he met her and I can’t thank him enough for bringing her up like his own.
Every year, my partner and I, with the kids, will always go for a Father’s Day walk. Whether it’s along the seaside, through a muddy field, a walk through a forest or just a sight-seeing walk, we just love going outdoors, having fun and making memories. It’s always nice to have a little tradition once a year. Although we go out for a walk often, we do try and make our walk on Father’s Day a little more exciting or different by taking a picnic with us, visiting somewhere totally different or even finding a new place to explore.
If you’re stuck on how to spend Father’s Day this year, here are a few ways you could celebrate:
Go out for a Father’s Day meal Go for a long walk along the seaside Have a Father’s Day BBQ in the back garden Have a movie night at home with snacks Host a little Father’s Day get-together Go paintballing /bowling/fishing
Although there are many ways to celebrate the special day, the most difficult thing to sort is the gift. I personally find it easier to buy gifts for women than I do for men. But this year, Boots have a great collection of Fail-Safe Father’s Day Gifts that would be great gifts for your Dad, Grandfather or someone special this year:
Fragrances are a great gift for men for Father's Day. Boots have a large collection of great branded fragrances such as Gucci Guilty, Hugo Boss, Paco Rabanne 1 Million and my Dad's favourite fragrance, Jean Paul Gaultier. I am sure whether it's your Dad, your partner, your grandfather or whoever you are buying for this Father's Day, won't be dissapointed when they are gifted they're favourite fragrance, or even a new fragrance they've not had before.
Boots don't only sell fragrances, but they also have a great collection of other gifts for Father's Day such as a large range of L'Oreal Paris products that include; Face wash, face scrubs, Hydra Energy face masks and daily moisturiser. If you know someone who loves to look after their skin, the L'Oreal 'The Daily Expert' is a great gift set to give. It includes three products: eye roll-on, moisturiser and deodorant.
Talking about skin, if you know someone who shaves then they have a great gift set for men with short beards. From L'Oreal again, is the Barber Club Short Beard Kit which includes Beard Wash and Beards Moisturiser. For something a little more fancy, Harry's Shave Set is a great gift to give. It includes a shaver, extra blades and shave cream. The set also comes presented in a nice gifted box. To add to the Harry's collection is the post-shave balm, face lotion and shave gel, which would be great little add-ons along with the gift set.
Do you find it hard to buy for your Dad on Father's Day? Well here's your chance to win something amazing for him. All you have to do is leave a comment below on what you like to do with your Dad on Father's Day, and what kind of gifts he usually appreciates.
Make sure you read the terms and conditions below before entering.
Terms and Conditions
1. Giveaway starts 11th of June 2019
2. Giveaway ends 17th of June 2019 at 11.59PM (UK)
3. UK entrants only
4. You MUST answer the question to be entered
5. Emails will not be shared
6. Winner will be contacted via email within 48 hours of giveaway end time
7. Winner will be given 14 whole working days to reply to the email, or another winner will be chosen.
- AD - We were kindly invited to Coral Island to review and we were given some spending money for the machines, a VIP card that let us go on a couple of rides, as well as a free meal in Captain Jacks. Although this is an AD, all words, images and opinions are entirely my own.
CORAL ISLAND, BLACKPOOL
Blackpool is a town I have visited many many times when I was a child. It's known for its fish and chip shops, arcades, lights and rides. It was somewhere my Dad used to take my brother and me for days out during all seasons. My best times to visit was the winter for the lights and the summer because it was just so nice. Years later and Blackpool has changed massively. The seaside front has been updated and it does look 10x better than what it used too.
When I was asked if I'd like to give a review of Coral Island on the promenade of Blackpool, I instantly said yes. Main reason being, I've not taken my kids to Blackpool and it's a place I've been wanting to visit again for a very long time. I've also heard some great things about Coral Island and so I couldn't wait to see what it was all about.
It was a May Bank Holiday weekend and the first weekend of the school holidays that we went, which honestly, wasn't the perfect time to go as it was overly busy. Coral Island was very easy to find and we parked in a multi-storey car park nearby, which was a 5-minute walk from the arcade centre.
There are 7 entrance doors to enter Coral Island and it's definitely a place you will not miss, with its lights, music and arcade machines. It was much bigger than I thought and there is a lot more mix of arcade machines than I thought too. You will find the classic old' 2p machines that everybody loves, electronic bingo, rides and much more.
ARCADE GAMES, TICKETS AND RIDES
The arcade games prices ranged from 2p, 10, 30p, 50p and £1. There are a few 'Change' machines if you were wanting some loose change and there's also a fair range of free cash machines to get money out too. As for the arcade machines, there's a great range of different machines to play for all ages.
Coral Island has a ticket system which means whichever machine you are on, you win some tickets. The higher your score, the more tickets you will receive. The girls especially loved this and in total, they got around 500 or so more tickets. Unfortunately, we weren't able to swap them in the Prize Counter because the queue was way too long and the wait would have been a long time. So we told the girls we would save them up until the next time we visit.
There are two rides; Pirate Flyer and The Ghost Train. We had one go on each ride, mainly because the girls didn't ask to go on them again and again, the queues were quite long when we were passing. The Pirate Flyer was the ride I went on with the kids. 4 people are allowed on one Pirate Flyer and the ride lets you have a flying view of the whole arcade - it was pretty cool!
The Ghost Train, on the other hand, I didn't go on it but my partner did. It's 2 people per cart and my eldest, who's 9, ended up crying all the way through. She was terrified, luckily her sister was sitting next to her and comforted her throughout the ride. My partner and my little boy, who's 2 years old were fine. So it all depends on the child if they can handle some slightly scary rides or not!
My only problem, other than the queues for the rides, was I personally found the staff on the rides a bit off. When the kids and I went on the Pirate Flyer, Freddie decided to have a meltdown before getting on. The pirate came around the corner and gave the kids a chocolate coin each, which I thought was nice. But the lady that let us go on the ride, wasn't all that enthusiastic like I was expecting. We were also not told that the ride stops for a few minutes - which literally scared me as my worst fear is a ride stopping halfway through - but all was ok in the end, luckily.
THE FOOD - CAPTAIN JACKS
There are a few food places to choose from, but we were gifted a family meal in Captain Jacks. The staff were so welcoming and I loved the whole 'Island Holiday/Pirate' kind of theme they had going. It wasn't a large place and it wasn't overly busy either. We were shown to our table and the kids were given their children's menu, as well as some crayons to draw - which is always a bonus.
Firstly, the kids eat free for every adult meal bought, which is a great bonus. The menu ranges from burgers, chicken and ribs. The menu for kids had a selection of chicken nuggets, sausages, macaroni and cheese and a couple more. As for prices, the adult menu started from £7.80 and in all honesty, the prices weren't too bad but I did find any add ons such as adding cheese to a burger etc, I found the extra price a little pricey. But it's not something that would stop me going back.
Something I have said since going to Captain Jacks was that the customer service was fantastic.
Coral Island is a very large place and I did feel I needed eyes on the back of my head to keep an eye on the kids, as it was super busy. I think I would have enjoyed it more if it wasn't so busy - it was quite difficult with the pram. But, saying that, the girls did enjoy themselves and I guess that's the main priority when you have a day out somewhere. The 2p machines took me back when I was a child, so I even had a go on them.
There is a lot of things to do there from the rides, arcade machines and other machines such as air hockey, car racing and so on. So it's definitely a place you can spend a good few hours at. As there are many other attractions in Blackpool, I would definitely visit Blackpool again to visit Coral Island and their other attractions (see below). But I would make sure I visit on a day or weekend that isn't the school holidays or bank holiday as it was a little too overwhelming for me.
OTHER USEFUL INFORMATION
Coral Island is huge, check out their online map to help you get around.
It's free entry which is great if you want little breaks in between.
Make sure you keep the kids close by as it is a large area.
There are toilets in Coral Island.
Kids eat free, all day, every day (with a purchased adult meal)
When you are travelling with family, you need to take care of your vehicle's condition because if the car is not road worthy and has cleared its MOT, it can cause you alot of inconvenience.
If you think that one MOT centre is much like another, then you couldn't be more wrong. Although all MOT centres need to provide a certain level of service or they'd lost their accreditation, not all places you could have your MOT conducted are the same. What should motorists be looking out for if they want to ensure that they will receive a high level of service?
1.Check for Genuine Accreditation - Although an MOT can only be legally conducted by an approved mechanic, some people try to pull the wool over their customers' eyes and conduct MOTs without the proper authorisation. If so, then you could be driving illegally thinking that your car has passed its annual test. In London, for example, trading standards officers sometimes have to close down garages which operate in this manner. Check for the right certification when you book an MOT and make sure it is still valid and not out of date. You can get a genuine MOT in the London area now by booking at DAT Tyres' site.
2.Look Out for Reviews - Not all garages have a good level of customer service. What do other people say about a mechanic you are considering? Check local review sites to ensure the place you will have your MOT conducted is a reputable trader in your area.
3.Consider Specialisms - MOTs are a series of basic but important checks that ensure you will be able to drive safely. However, having a full service takes more skill from a mechanic. Therefore, you should check out the other services on offer outside of an MOT, such as an air-conditioning gas fill up, for example.
4.Ensure You Know the Charges - Mechanics who conduct MOTs should have a transparent pricing policy. Extras and small fixes should be available from a price list you can check. If the garage is cagey about pricing, then make a booking elsewhere.
Whether you have a new or old car, it's so important to maintain your car. There are a few things you need to maintain and check on a car. But one of the main things is to make sure you check your car tyres, it's also a great idea to get into a habit of checking for any damage to your tyres. From damage, punctures and worn out tyres, there's a lot to maintain but it's so important to get into the habit of checking them. You can get your car tyres in London from the best autocentres in town - Iverson Tyres Ltd London. Explore their website now to learn more.
Every tyre should last your a good amount of miles, for example, front tyres should get you 20,000 miles minimum for a front-wheel drive and double that for a four-wheel drive. But it's important to keep an eye on the tread of your tyes. The minimum depth for treads is 1.6mm and anything below, you must replace your tyres as it is illegal and unsafe to drive on the roads with treads lower than 1.6mm.
It's also recommended that you get someone professional to look at your car tyres once your tyres are five years old or over. This is so they can have a good check and make sure that there is no damage at all on them. It's also recommended that if you haven't replaced your tyres 10 years after their date of manufacture, then it's best to do so.
As said above, it's good to get into a habit of checking your tyres and another reason for this is to check the pressure of your tyres. For example, for a partial load, your front tyres should be 30 psi and for a fully loaded car, your front tyres should be 26 psi. Your rear tyres should be 30psi for a partial load and 36 psi for a full load. It's quite easy to notice and feel a low-pressure tyre, but some car models, mostly newer models will have a low tyre pressure warning light on your dashboard. If you're unsure that it only needs air, do not hesitate to get the tyres seen by professionals.
Lastly, when you drive your car it's important to keep notice of any unusual sounds or movements. For example, if your car seems to be vibrating unusually then it's a big warning sign. It is important to take your car to the garage to get your tyres checked. One of the reasons for this could be an alignment problem or a damaged suspension, which will need to be looked at and possibly replacement of your tyres too.
The family summer vacation should always be a highlight of the year and create new memories for you all to cherish. Unfortunately, these vacations often do not live up to expectation and can cause a huge amount of stress. If you want to make this year’s family holiday extra special, then there are a few steps that you could take which will make a big difference. Following these tips could help this year’s holiday to stand out and be one which you all always remember and one which brings you all closer together. Read on for a few suggestions for how to make this year’s holiday extra special.
• Go With Friends/Family
One way to make this holiday one which stands out is to go with friends or extended family. Having other families to spend time with can add another dimension to the holiday and bring plenty of fun (just make sure that it is people that you are all happy to spend time with!).
They do not necessarily have to stay with you, and you do not have to do everything together, but it can be nice to have a few more people along for the trip and bring you closer together.
• Try Something New
A holiday should be time for chilling out and recharging your batteries, but it is also a good chance to try something new and expand your horizons. This can add fun to the vacation, make it more memorable and could help to give your kids a confidence boost.
What you do will depend on where you are and what your interests are, but it could be something like a hot air balloon ride, a cooking lesson, riding a horse, scuba diving etc. It is always a good idea to encourage your kids to step out of their comfort zone, but you should not force them into doing something that they don’t want to do.
• Book Private Accommodation
When you are on a family vacation, it is nice if you can have privacy and a home away from home. Booking into private accommodation can provide this for you so that you can enjoy meals together, relax in privacy when you do not feel like going out and feel settled.
A cottage in Cornwall is a nice idea because there are many beautiful, charming and practical cottages to choose from at places like Portscatho Holidays and Cornwall is a brilliant place for a family vacation. It is an area of great beauty with lots of coastal walks and inviting towns to explore - you could even bring your dog along with you to make the trip extra special.
Family vacations are incredibly important, yet sometimes they do not live up to expectation and can sometimes not be as memorable as you’d hoped. It is for this reason why it is important to be aware of a few reasons how you can make a summer family holiday extra special - this ensures that it will be a holiday that you and the kids cherish forever and enjoy together.
For kids, their bedroom isn't just a place where they sleep and keep their stuff. In fact, it's a sanctuary where they can let their imaginations run riot as well. For parents, however, achieving a space that is both practical and the magical can be something of a challenge. Luckily, that is precisely why I have written the post below, so keep reading for some steps that will help you reach that balance.
First of all, no matter how charming you want the room to be, it's essential to get the practicalities and basics sorted. What this means is ensuring that the room is safe for the child to spend time in and that it has all the furniture items that they need.
Of course, the most essential piece of furniture in a bedroom is the bed, and the good news is that when it comes to ones built for children, there are a whole range of fun options that are still practical too. Options that include things like a cabin bed, with space underneath for a desk and storage, or even a tented option. The latter being a partially smart choice for encouraging imaginative play.
How to Choose the Best Mattress for A Child | Kids Mattress Buying Guide - YouTube
However, a functional bedroom space will not only need a bed, but other pieces of furniture as well, including a wardrobe for storing clothes, and if there is enough room, toys too. Happily, you can often find some real bargains like these best price wardrobes online. Something that will allow you to save up more money to spend on the other more fun aspect of the room, as described below.
Step two: a theme
Once you have the basics sorted, it time to embrace the fun and pick a theme to decorate the room around. The best thing about using a theme to decorate a child's room is that it can be anything they like. In fact, allowing your child to have some say in what it will be is always a good idea.
Although, doing so doesn't mean that you have to end up with garish wallpaper, and posters that are branded with their favourite TV show if you don't want.
In fact, if you are looking for a cleaner, more minimalistic look, that is still fun for the kids, then why not go for a jungle theme? Then you can work with a neutral white background and add pops of colour with things like giant stuffed animals, walls stickers, and even decorative hooks as a more subtle way of making the space fun.
Step three: bedding and soft furnishing
Finally, when it comes to choosing the bedding and other textiles for your child's bedroom, remember that there is a substantial range of options out there. In fact, you can get some very stylish and understated pieces that are still aimed at kids.
There are also some pretty amazing shaped throw pillows and other textile decorations that you can add to their room to encourage a sense of fun, magic, and wonder as well. All while still staying as stylish and practical as possible.
How quick is May going this year? With a mix of bank holidays and school holidays, it's flying by. This upcoming Bank Holiday weekend on Saturday the 25th of May, Smyths Toystores around the country are throwing a FREE party for all families. You can check out what theme parties are happening at your local Smyths store here.
I'm a big fan of Smyths Toys and actually gutted that I am unable to attend our local Smyths store to join in with all the fun. The party will start from 9am and it's a free day full of fun including, face paitings, DJs and there are even prizes to be won.
If you're local to me, then it's a Toy Story 4 party that will be held in Llandudno's Smyths stores and there's Toy Story 4 minis, stickers and posters to be won. Not only that but there's also a chance to win £50 vouchers every hour from 10am to 1pm. There's tonnes of fun to be had in Smyths stores this Bank Holiday.
Check out here what free parties are being held in your local Smyths store.