Friday, 24 October 2014

To Be 16 Again

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Would you do anything to be 16 again? I'm not sure that I would. I definitely had one of the best summers of my life back then - young, single and spending time with my girl friends but then the first few months and last few months were pretty rubbish. What I do remember however was the soundtrack to my summer. Some of the songs were new then, some were a few of our old favourites. All I know is that when I hear them now I am automatically transported back to my 16 year old self that summer and all the fun we had. Mind you, my summer aged 17 was pretty awesome too and also had its own soundtrack!

Aged 16, music and friends seemed to be my life. Not yet being able to drink or do much, we spent most of our time round each others houses watching films or going to parties - typical life of a 16 year old, right?

Music played such a big part of my life that it seems crazy that I didn't actually go to my first concert until I had just turned 21 - madness, I know! I liked so much back then and wanted to go and see so many people - my best friend and I made so many plans that never actually came into fruition!

Whilst I wouldn't change my life now for the world, there are some things that I'd do now that I wanted to do back then - care even less what people think of me (I was still quite shy and lacking in confidence - it wasn't until my pub job that I started coming out of my shell). I'd definitely go to more concerts - I am currently considering getting some Basement Jaxx tickets for The 02 and a few other artists too.

I'd perhaps even stop certain friendships from beginning and stop others from ending. But after all is said and done, I can only change back then what I can do now. Would you want to be 16 again?

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Thursday, 23 October 2014

Funky Laser -- Perfect Presents For All

When recently given the opportunity to review some items from Funky Laser, I was very excited. Having seen their items previously on Sarah's blog, I knew they had some great pieces and it was with great intrigue that I awaited my parcel from them. 

Inside I found two amazing items - one which I am keeping for the future which you shall see in a moment and the other which I wear often but try to keep away from a sneaky toddler's prying hands!

The items I were sent were the Mr & Mrs Wedding Cake Topper in blue (£13.99) and the Caramel Gingerbread Man necklace on a gold chain (£5.50). Two very different items but items which enabled me to really understand the business as a whole.

FunkyLaser Ltd offers quirky but distinctive designs made using the latest high speed laser cutters - ensuring a customer's wait for their item is minimal!

As you may have guessed it, I am saving the cake topper for our actual wedding (date still not set) so have been very careful with the product when handling it. Arriving in a sealed plastic bag on a piece of card showing directions for use, the cake topper is certainly eye catching. Although the topper itself feels very hard, I don't want to risk breaking it so have been careful not to put too much pressure onto it. It is beautiful though and will be pride of place in our cake.

There are a vast number of cake toppers available on the site and there are also a vast number of colours available for each one. I am quite glad that I received the blue as it would definitely have been between the blue and the black had I been picking myself. We are looking to cut costs as much as possible when it comes to the wedding so this is another item to go into the wedding box ready for the big day.

Now for the item that will be used much more in the present, the Caramel Gingerbread Man necklace. I've always loved little gingerbread man characters (adore the little one in Shrek!) so was happy to see this included in my parcel. I don't tend to wear much jewellery besides my engagement ring as I have a pesky little toddler who likes to grab things - and inevitably breaks them too. I had taken to buying cheap jewellery from Amazon as Jack had broken so many - he even managed to break one from Amazon within minutes of me putting it on!!

I try to wear this when going out as a family or going out alone - I see no point in wearing jewellery around my house anymore if it is just going to get broken - and I would much rather people see my jewellery than hiding it away. I have had a number of quirky necklaces over the years but what I love about this one is that he really 'funs' up an otherwise boring outfit. I could be wearing a simple top and jeans but this little man makes what I'm wearing look a little more fun. 

The necklace itself is of a great quality and an extremely affordable price. It fascinates me just how FunkyLaser manage to cut their products - whilst we know that they use the best laser cutters around so time is not an issue, the precision and care that goes into each item is simply phenomenal and I am definitely interested to see if they expand their range beyond jewellery and wedding accessories - I can see them doing very well for themselves if so!

All items are available on the FunkyLaser website. Why not take a look for yourself?

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Items were sent for the purpose of review

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

The Problems With Having A Big Family

Both myself and Steve are from big families. Not a big deal, some may say. 'I would love that - why is that a bad thing?' ask others. Well, let me ask you - have you ever tried to remember every single important date in your small family? Now multiply it. 

No matter what, it seems like we are always forgetting birthdays, anniversaries etc. Now in the days of Facebook, it isn't such a big deal to send a certain cousin a card as a simple Facebook message will suffice but there are still those important people whose birthdays and anniversaries you need to remember. I am one of five children and is Steve. We also have multiple nieces and nephews and whilst we don't necessarily buy them all presents for important occasions (some are a little too old for that now), remembering the date itself is hard enough as it is.

Now it has rolled into October, we are onto the big run of birthdays - from October to February it seems like everyone is having a birthday in our family although of course that is not the case. We have a variety of calendars dotted around the place but these all seem to host information about Steve's work pattern or important doctors appointments - that is if we remember to use them at all! 

I am determined that we will get on top of these important dates in the future - every October I sit and panic as I try to remember just what dates I need to remember. I need something that will help me remember that I will actually be inclined to use - perhaps a personalised calendar like the ones available here or something similar. Boring everyday calendars and the ones available on my computer and my phone just don't cut it and I still forget so perhaps something with my family on will actually lead me to remember?

With Jack's birthday coming up and multiple siblings creeping up on us too, I need to get myself sorted especially if buying presents - I'm fed up of being the one who always forgets!

Do you find you have the same trouble with your family, whether big or small? There are just too many dates to remember!

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Stuck On You Stick On & Iron On Labels

With Jack soon to start nursery, we know that we will have to start labeling his stuff. After all, you can't expect a three year old to remember which one is his if other children have the same.  Now that he is able to read his name, labeling his items will make it easier for both him and nursery staff to distinguish what is his. To help us in this process, we were kindly sent some stick on and iron on personalised name labels from the people at Stuck On You

We were sent the Little Kid's Value Pack to review. Each pack comes with an iron on sleeve of labels and a stick on one. I've had to keep these hidden from Jack otherwise I would find the stick on ones absolutely everywhere!

We chose the construction design with his full name. There are a number of different designs to choose from but with Jack recently loving his trucks and car toys, construction seemed like the way to go for these. We have been busy preparing a number of different items for nursery including clothes, rucksacks and the like.

The iron on pack are easy to apply - simply place face up on the fabric so that the text is showing, cover with supplied parchment paper and iron over with a dry iron on a setting between medium and hot for 10 seconds. Repeat until the label is firmly applied and allow to cool before use. Of course, the stickers are even easier, just peel off and stick on!

We are quite impressed with these labels - especially as the packs come with both iron on labels and stickers meaning that you can use different labels for different items - iron on obviously are great for clothing whereas stickers are better for books etc.  There are such a wide variety of designs available and different sized packs too - whilst we chose the little kid's pack, there are junior packs available too.

I will definitely be considering picking up more of these in the future - after all, they are definitely more attractive than the labels I had sewn in/stuck in to my clothes when I was younger! These currently retail at £13.99 and are definitely worth every penny.

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Item was sent for the purpose of review

Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Bingo Through The Ages

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Some people consider me quite lucky. I enter quite a lot of competitions and I win a lot of them. 

But that's the point - I enter a lot thus obviously have more chance of winning than someone else who doesn't. 

 I do think I have some form of luck though - when the chips are down and I think it simply can't get any worse and something happens that makes me believe everything is going to be alright - that's luck.      

I mentioned before that I often try my luck at competitions but I've also recently been trying my luck at online bingo. Having tried a variety of sites out in the past and falling in love with the community that surrounds online bingo.

It is quite amazing that bingo has been around for so long - 1530 in fact in Italy! It has evolved so much over the years and is much more than the 'game for old ladies' that it seemingly was a little over twenty years ago, before the digital age really rolled in.  I love nothing more than spending a little bit of time online and playing some bingo at Paddy Power is my current online activity of choice so I am glad to share their infographic today on bingo through the ages.

Do you enjoy a good game of bingo? Do you prefer to play online or in a hall?

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Food For The Whole Family

With Steve working random shifts and me working from home, sometimes the only person who gets a proper evening meal is Jack - I don't tend to make myself tea the same time as Jack unless all three of us are home so we are always looking for handy little snack type meals to fill us up.

We were recently sent the Naanster range to try out. I had seen these in the shops but had never thought to pick them up for some reason. We received two of each flavour: beef madras, balti chicken, chicken tikka and vegetable tikka. Steve tried some, I tried a few and we also roped his Dad into testing some too.

I stuck to the vegetable tikka as I am a bit of a wimp when it comes to curry style dishes. I did have a bite of the balti and chicken tikka when Steve had them but didn't dare go near the madras - I don't think my mouth could have taken it!

The Naansters are designed to microwaved in the packaging after the packaging has been pierced. Whilst the products tasted great and exactly like I expected them to, I did find that heating them in the packaging left the naan bread to go a little limp and soggy which wasn't exactly pleasant - it didn't take away from the taste experience however.

After taste testing from the whole family, we came to the conclusion that these are a great filler if you fancy a snack between meals or are rushing around on shift work. They taste as expected and are quick and easy to heat up. However, the sogginess of the naan after heating was a little disappointing and something that Naanster could possibly take a look into to see if they can improve.

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Item was sent for the purpose of review

Are There Legitimate Risks In Getting A Pre Natal Ultrasound?

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There’s so much excitement when you are having your first child. And so much trepidation. A primary source of concern is the first ultrasound. Is it safe for me and my baby?

Ultrasound uses high-frequency sound waves to view the muscles and internal organs in real-time, allowing the doctor to see movement and blood flow in the fetus. They have been used for over 20 years in a myriad of medical circumstances including to help athletes, check your heart or monitor the health of your baby boy or girl. There are no known risks associated with ultrasound imaging except for minimal effects including heating of body tissue heating.

While there are no long-term effects of ultrasound, it’s good practice to only receive ultrasounds at recommended times during the pregnancy. It is discouraged to receive ultrasounds for memorabilia purposes.

If you have experienced issues during the first few weeks of the pregnancy, your doctor may refer you for an early ultrasound. This would take place within the first six to nine weeks of the pregnancy. Normally, you will have two ultrasounds during your pregnancy.

The first ultrasound is called the dating ultrasound and usually takes place in the first trimester. This could happen anywhere between week ten and week thirteen of your pregnancy. It will give you a more accurate picture of when your baby is due, reveal the number of babies you are carrying (twins, you say), and check your baby’s heartbeat. The next ultrasound takes place at sixteen to twenty weeks. This time the obstetrician will check for any abnormalities, determine the baby’s sex (if you want to know), and to measure his or her size.

Ultrasounds aren’t perfect. An ultrasound may not detect all birth defects or falsely detect a birth defect. Either way, the pros of having ultrasounds during your pregnancy far outweigh any negatives. It’s about the health of your new baby.

Of course, each pregnancy is unique and your medical history may deem it necessary to have additional ultrasounds. Whether you have two ultrasounds or more, ultrasounds are a safe and easy way to check your baby’s progress and health. Your baby’s health is paramount and this is a critical tool for monitoring their health.

This post was written for by Glenn Josephik. Glenn is an account representative and the marketing coordinator at MedCorp LLC, the industry leader and premier business source for used portable ultrasound systems. You can follow Glenn Josephik on Google+.

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