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Tuesday, 13 June 2017

Preparing Car & Car Tyres For The Summer Road Trip

For those of us that work in Retail, summer holidays aren't always something we do, particularly for me as I now work in kids stores that means summer holidays are an absolute no go. Therefore for me, I go on a lot of road trips and day trips! So making sure I am prepared is always essential!

I am normally relatively prepared when it comes to taking journeys in the car. I always make sure I have items such as water and a spare jacket in the car, just in case of getting stuck in traffic in the warm weather or the unfortunate case that I get stuck later at night when it is colder or even break down when it’s cold! As well as sunglasses, in case it is mega sunny out!

I always try not to over pack my car, the chances are I will only have myself and one other person when driving but I am aware of other trips being made this summer that there are more people in the car, so I will be trying not to have too much in the car that will make the load too heavy.

Allergies can be around a lot in the Summer, and triggered by many things, therefore it is best to talk to your Doctor or Pharmacist if you will be taking lots of trips. You can stay safer in the car by having mats down that you can clean regularly and also change and clean the air filters as it is likely you will be using air conditioning a lot!

In case you have tyre tread below the legal limit, change your tyres ASAP, there are multiple ways you can buy tyres online. Many companies allow you to book tyres on their website. Point S is one such company, you can easily buy tyres online from Point S website

I think it's always important to be aware of the dangers of driving in the summer too. Particularly exploding tyres which can happen when your tyres are under-inflated and this in turn causes too much friction with the road, leading to overheating resulting in your tyre exploding. The best way to prevent this happening is to check your tyre pressure regularly! Also make sure that there is no wear and tear on your tyres, check the tyre tread- you can perform the 20P test to make sure tyre tread are within the legal limit, Find out how to perform this test here

Secondly, in the summer heat, your engine can also overheat which can cause you all kinds of dramas. If you notice your car overheating, then the best thing you can do is pull over and turn your engine off for a short while so it has time to cool down before carrying on with your journey. 

I will definitely be taking all this into consideration for the road trips I will be taking this Summer!

*this is a sponsored post, sponsored by Point S

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Wednesday, 31 May 2017

Long Time No See

Hello, hello, gosh has it really been two months already?! That is quite shameful on my part. I have always said that I don't want to apologise for not posting on my Blog, as it's mine and I can choose when to post or not. But I do apologise, this has certainly not been intentional whatsoever, nor will I be going in to details why as it's not my place to disclose. There are reasons why I haven't posted and I have prioritised being with loved ones and sorting lots out!

I am pleased to say I am back, woo! I haven't fallen off the face of the Earth, and I do want to get more of a routine with blogging as I absolutely love the writing aspect of it. I think there is always so much drama going on in the world of Blogging, and it's such a sad thing to see. Please don't forget to keep up with me on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

Where Have I Been?
I have done so much in the last two months, it feels an absolute whirlwind and has flown by completely, I honestly cannot believe it is June already. Most importantly, I went to Disneyland! Oh my goodness, it was incredible, there are reasons why it could have been a happier time but Phil & I completely loved our time there and we desperately want to go back at some point, but saving to move out is taking a priority at the moment. We have hopefully decided somewhere to go on holiday next year, I need to get saving like crazy!

What Have I Been Doing?
What haven't I been doing more like? I have been working like crazy, and studying. Yes! So I have been really focusing on studying, since my last topic in this module was so rushed, I am trying to keep on top of it this time for the current topic, as I have a little longer to do the assignment, I am currently trying to familiarise myself with the assignment so that I can get another good grade. I got 80% in the last assignment, how is beyond me but I clearly said the right things! Doing Open Uni has not been easy with working full time but I know in the end it will be rewarding and I hope to be able to get some work experience of some sort in before I finish so that I have some experience to go into the job I need.

What Is New?
I think the most important change I have made in the past couple of months is to go back to Slimming World, I tried at the beginning of 2016 and could not get my head in the game. I am so determined this time, I am wanting to improve my health and that essentially starts with the food and eating habits. I have pretty much prepped every lunch and dinner in advance so far, and I am still learning what is going to work for me. And I do think that is what I needed to realise, this is not going to happen overnight, I noticed changes quickly but then I went easy on myself and realised I couldn't be like that. Yes, it is a learning curve, it is not a straight road and I will not be losing the pounds by the minute or hour, it will take time. I'm just under a stone off in a little over a month, but I feel better, my health feels like it is improving by the day, and the times I do slip up, my body screams at me for it! I'm so glad I made the decision to go back, and I'm so looking forward to the journey I'm going to take. 

What Else Have I Been Up To?
I have had my first anniversary with Phil, and we did what we do best, went to the Zoo! We absolutely love Marwell Zoo and it was such a lovely day, they are doing lots of new enclosures so we can't wait to go back next year to see them all.
I also made a trip to London on a spur of the moment with the family and we went to one of Jamie Oliver's restaurants, Barbecoa, it was such incredible food! I would definitely recommend it.
I've also continued with my Bullet Journal and I really want to do a blog post on it soon!

What To Expect Now:
I am hoping to be more engaging on Social Media, links can be found above and below the post, and to post on my blog once a week. It is a start as I still have so much I am doing, for example studying, so while I work out the right balance it will be little to start with.

Enough about me, how are you? What is new with you?

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Saturday, 8 April 2017

March & April: Study Update

I had every intention of doing a March Study Update, but time sort of got away with me and I’m slightly behind with my blog posts.

Anyway, I have been studying away, with all the tutorials and keeping up with the work while working full time, I cannot say it has been easy. March went much better for studying as I had some time off, I’m now currently a couple of weeks behind due to getting ready for Disneyland and then actually going to Disneyland, along with a couple of other more important things to deal with, however I am coming up with a little plan to get back up to date and will be spending the majority of my days off coming up will be spent catching up.

I have just finished a block on ‘Working in Organisations’ which I personally really enjoyed. It was based on job selection, composing job descriptions and how to recruit for said jobs. It has definitely opened my eyes on a different view of business, it’s something I have recently had to deal with in my job and I must say that it has given me an insight into a potential new area that I would one day like to go into. I was always dead set on wanting to go into Marketing but I think what is great about the module I’m studying at the moment is that it covers all the broad areas of Business, therefore I am able to get an insight into all the potential areas that I might one day get a career in. While I don’t particularly have a lot of experience in these areas, I am working full time in a job that will give me experience in all of these areas. No, it’s not the best experience but it is experience nonetheless and I can really tell my knowledge is expanding daily and weekly and it is so rewarding too.

At the end of the last block, I had an assignment to do, I chose a job description to write about and assess the types of recruitment that could be done for it. I loved it and it definitely paid off as I got 93%, a mark I never thought was possible! It is safe to say I doubt myself too much as I did achieve it and I am so proud of myself for doing it! I haven’t achieved that high a grade since my GCSE’s I think, that’s going on a good 8 years now (what a scary thought!). While I have said I am slightly behind on the work now, getting this incredible grade has motivated me to strive for the success I truly want. I will crack down and study away and get the good grades that I want.

I sometimes feel like I am not really studying, that I’m just gaining this knowledge in my spare time, it’s an odd feeling, one the I can’t really describe. I am sure that I have mentioned before that this is finally something that I have chosen to do for myself, to do everything I possibly can to further my career and strive be successful in the future to provide for a home and a good life. Those dream holidays, that cute little home and the little luxuries. Who knows what the future may hold!

I have really been thinking about my future the past couple of weeks and thinking about what I would want in the future, and it is time to put these plans into place.

This has been a long rambling post, my bad.

Watch this space!

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Wednesday, 29 March 2017

Disneyland: A To Do List

On Sunday, I am off to Disneyland Paris and if you didn't know that, you know now! When I was younger, we used to go as a family pretty much every year till I was about 14. I am so excited to be going back, especially as I am going with Phil and he has never been before, so it's going to be a really special trip. We're going for 5 days so we do want to do pretty much everything. However, here are a few things in particular:

1. Get that Iconic Photo in front of the Castle
I reckon this is top of everyone's list when they go to Disneyland, get that photo in front of the Castle. Having been to Florida and seeing pictures of the other Castles, this one has to be my favourite, plus it's pink! I love the walk up to it and the fact that the whole park leads to the Castle! I can't remember walking around inside either so it's definitely something I would like to do.

2. Go to the Rainforest Cafe 
I have many fond memories of eating here. I love the atmosphere, it is pretty much like a rainforest, with animals that move mechanically, and make noises, the massive elephants have to be my favourite. They have massive fish tanks in the entrance too, which are pretty epic. As well as noises every half an hour to an hour to make it sound like a storm in the Rainforest, a personal favourite of mine too. I had pretty much one request for when we are there and that is to go to the Rainforest Cafe on my birthday which Phil agreed to, isn't he a babe?! I have also managed to start a collection of stuffed animals, with a Giraffe from Marwell Zoo and a Lion from Longleat, that I have also decided to get an elephant to remember our visit to the Rainforest Cafe. My not so lame collection didn't happen intentionally!! So, if you didn't guess they have a huge shop there too which I am excited to explore.

3. Parades
To my knowledge, there are a lot of parades at the moment. They are truly magical and they are a must see. The most incredible floats and music blaring throughout the park, it is an experience like no other! Even if you just see it once, you'll be hooked.

4. Fireworks - Illuminations
I can't believe this only came in at number 4. All of these are an absolute priority but I can't number them all 1! Much like the parade but a must see on a greater scale. If you have to sleep all day to stay up to see this. It will be so worth it. Think of the most incredible fireworks you've ever seen, add magic, Disney music, Video Projection onto the Castle, times by 100 and you have Illuminations.

5. Shopping/Food
Oh my goodness, all of the shopping. We have already agreed that the first thing we are doing is heading to get some Mickey and Minnie ears. I may have seen that they have done amazing 25th Anniversary Glitter ones. So I am after those. Plus all the other shopping, but I think I will save my thoughts until my haul post.
The food isn't really anything special, except they do a lot of themed foods which I am excited for. There is one thing that is one of the best things ever and I can remember the smell so well, the popcorn. It is better than any other popcorn you will ever taste. Rumour has it that they've turned it blue for the 25th Anniversary.

6. Pin Trading
Now I don't want to trade in particular, but I do want to collect them. I know they do hotel exclusives so I will be picking up one of those and no doubt some 25th Anniversary exclusives.

I had a genius idea last week, that I wanted to get some personalised t-shirts made, perhaps with our favourite Disney quotes, or something for the memory of going. All about the memories over here. Printsome* do amazing quality t-shirts that can be printed with any design or logo you wish to promote your brand or perhaps a group trip coming up. Not only can you get t-shirts, but also hoodies, vests or tote bags. It is a much more cost effective way of doing it. I know next time I need something personalised, I will be heading to Printsome.

I am oh so damn excited for Disneyland on Sunday.

* This post was sponsored by Printsome

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Sunday, 26 March 2017

Giggling Squid, Salisbury

I recently went to Giggling Squid* in Salisbury to try out their brand new Evening Tapas Menu and check the place out! I took Phil with me, not that he put up much of a fight though..! Neither would I knowing the incredible menu we were about to enjoy. When we arrived we were greeted by two of he staff who were so friendly when we arrived. As we both work in retail, I've said it before and I will say it again, customer service is so important and they did not disappoint!

We took a while to look at their menu, to take everything in as there was so much! We started with some prawn crackers and wine, despite both having work the next day (fortunately no hangovers!). These are not just any prawn crackers, they were so tasty, and they came with a sweet chilli dipping sauce, which made them oh so much better! As they are Thai ones, they aren't as greasy as your Chinese takeaway and also have a hint of spice to them which makes them have a it of a kick which is really tasty. 

Next we ordered two of their Tapas Set Menus, we went for Let's Giggle, the one I chose and then Phil decided on Let's Have A Treat but we both shared them! I think since you get 3 main dishes and a rice, you would definitely only need one of their set menus for two people and possibly an extra rice if you think you would need it, we would and we have already planned this for a future date night! 

In our set menus, for the Let's Giggle we had:
Duck canapé on lettuce leaves
Chicken Massaman Curry
Grilled crying beef

For the Let's Have A Treat we had:
Tom Yum Chicken
Seafood 'Fishing Village' in red curry
Roast duck in Tamarind Sauce

We basically shared all the dishes, so we got to try a bit of everything! The Duck Canapé was delicious, it came with some lettuce and tomato and a little bit of salsa, the duck was a bit chewy but was still delicious. I would never have thought to put that combination together, but I am so glad I got to try it. The Chicken Massaman Curry was tasty, the chicken was moist and perfectly cooked in the curry. I would say the sauce was a little thick and I didn't quite expect it to be the way it was for Thai food! However, I did very much enjoy it. The Grilled Crying Beef was honestly incredible, this had to be one of my most favourite dishes of all the tapas dishes, the Roast Duck was a very strong contender too! I wasn't too sure what to expect but the Grilled Crying Beef had a sweet sauce on it, not too much, the perfect amount and was served with some peppers and salad.

The Tom Yum Chicken was one of Phil's favourites, Chicken with mushrooms and other veg in a broth/soup liquid that tasted amazing, I personally would have liked a bit more flavour but for someone who prefers mild food, this is perfect. We both really enjoyed the Seafood 'Fishing Village' in red curry, Phil ate both the prawns so we obviously need to go back so I can try the prawns in it. I enjoyed it and would really like to try it again when we next go. Lastly, the Roast Duck in Tamarind Sauce is possibly one of the best dishes I have ever eaten. Very similar to the Crying Beef, it had a sweet sauce on it, not too much, and was served with cashew nuts, which I didn't eat with it, so simply had it with rice. I could definitely eat these as a main rather than just a tapas dish.

When we go back, I would definitely like to have the Let's Have A Treat tapas set again. Or even try something completely different! 

We also opted for dessert. I know, I know, how on earth did we put a dessert away after all that?! I personally didn't finish mine. I had the Chocolate Feullantine, a chocolate mousse with a dark chocolate disc on top. Served with a fruit coulis and a strawberry. Phil went for Sesame Seed ice cream and Brighton Rose Yoghurt Ice Cream, which he spoke about below.

Phil says, "I have always been a very fussy eater, some kids grow out of it, I didn't. I have recently made a conscious effort to be more adventurous with the food that I'm eating and the Giggling Squid's Tapas menu was certainly a little ways out of my comfort zone. I thoroughly enjoyed every dish on my "Let's have a treat" set menu with my favourite dish being the Tom Yum chicken, which I could eat every day of my life from here on out. All of the dishes were spectacular on both set menu's (as I sampled everything on Adele's too) and my tastebuds and tummy were very happy when I left. For dessert, everyone needs to try their Black Sesame ice cream, which is exclusive to the Giggling Squid in Salisbury and was the perfect way to end the night! I would like to thank the Giggling Squid for having us and helping my broadening my horizons with their beautiful food."

Both were truly incredible, everything was cooked to perfection and I honestly could not fault it. Obviously there were some dishes that were more to our tastes than others and often we do like similar dishes which would make it easy to go back and choose one of the set menus. 

For all my wonderful Salisbury friends and readers, if you head down to Giggling Squid in Salisbury, which you so totally should, on Tuesday 28th March, after 5:30pm, the first 50 people through the door will receive a free tapas set each. They are delicious, you should go!

*This Meal was complimentary from Giggling Squid, but as always, all views and opinions are my own.

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Saturday, 18 March 2017

What's In My Bag: Travel Essentials

If you weren't aware, I'm off to Disneyland Paris in a couple of weeks! I also tend to take a lot of day trips with my Boyfriend, so what I put in my bag is extremely important. Especially for somewhere like Disneyland Paris, there is simply nothing worse than trekking to and from your hotel, ours is one of the ones that is about a 20 minute walk away, so it would take a big chunk out of our day should we forget anything. We are also travelling by Eurostar, so we need lots to keep us occupied, as well as snacks of course!

I've compiled a cheeky list of my travel essentials, so I've got a check list of what I need to take, and of course, some suggestions for you as well!

To start with, I always have a pouch of some form. This one is from Alphabet Bags and I must say I have at least 3 pouches in 3 different sizes and also a Wash Bag of theirs. It is safe to say that I love their products, which I very much do. I find uses for all of the sizes I have. I will be taking two to Disneyland, my largest one will fit pens, a notebook, my bullet journal and all of our documents that we need to take with us, and then this small Diamond one which will fit pretty much all of the below in it.

I will be taking hand sanitiser, as you never know what the queues will be like or say you get some ice cream on your hands, you don't want them sticky! So I will have a good selection of hand sanitiser with me. I will also take hand cream and this one from Trifle Cosmetics smells like Buttercream (good enough to eat!). I don't know about anyone else but depending on the weather, my skin can get so dry, so it's not too much to pack this in my bag. Of course, dry shampoo and hair ties like the invisibobble are very important and for the obvious reasons too! I cannot leave the house without any form of lip balm, I don't go overboard with it, but when I need lip balm, I really need it. I love the EOS ones, plus they last like forever, so I can't really go wrong. I do also make sure I have some form of tissues/wet wipes, you honestly never know when you may need it on a day trip.

These amazing PNY* Accessories will be coming with me on my travels all the time now! I am loving having these Portable Chargers, and the extra long iPhone cable too. Plus, these are Rose Gold which is pretty much my life now. The two Portable Chargers are very similar but they have one major difference, the larger one holds 3 full charges and the smaller 1 holds 1 full charge. I think this helps when choosing which one to take, if I know I'm going to be on my phone a lot or I am out for a really long period of the day, most likely the case for my entire Disneyland trip, then I will take the larger Portable Charger. Whereas if I know my phone battery will last most of the day and I only want it as back up then I will take the smaller one. The quality of these products is amazing, they live up to all my expectations and even exceed them. As I know often the case some portable chargers can be bad quality, these have worked wonders over the past few weeks and I have no doubt they will continue to help when I need to charge my phone!

So, to summarise, here are my travel essentials (plus a few extras):
  • Portable Charger
  • USB Phone Cable
  • Phone Charger (and Adaptors if needed)
  • Headphones
  • Notebook
  • Pens
  • Tissues
  • Hand Sanitiser
  • Hair Ties
  • Dry Shampoo
  • Water
  • Snacks
  • Mints/Gum
  • Paracetamol/Ibuprofen
  • Travel Documents and Passport!
What are your must haves when travelling?

*These products were kindly gifted by PNY, but as always, all views and opinions are my own.

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