Saturday, 24 June 2017

Finding a local Gardener with Bidvine

We've been attempting to have our garden redone since the middle of April this year. We had found a gardener but unfortunately after laying the artificial grass he has disappeared off the face of the Earth with our deposit to complete the remaining work. It has been so stressful and we are gutted. We have spent a long time googling gardeners in our area and to be honest it's more hard work then we'd anticipated. Luckily, I was asked if I would like to try Bidvine.

Bidvine takes the hassle out of trawling the internet for providers. You can either visit their website or download their app to your phone. You are able to find providers and services within your local area by simply answering a few questions and then hey presto, quotes will start to arrive. This was going to be ideal for me to find a gardener asap and stress free.

The website was so simple and easy to use. You type in the search bar what you are looking for, so in my case it was gardening services. You are then asked specifically related questions to help find you the perfect matches.

I was asked questions such as:
1) What type of gardening project is it?
2) How many and what type of plants do I want?
3) When do I need the gardener to start etc

I think this is such a great feature as it cuts out a lot of the middle man talk. It's allows the responses to match your specific needs which saves you time and effort in the long term. 

Hubby and I have been so pleased with how easy it all was. The website was very easy to navigate.

I've actually recommended Bidvine to a work colleague who is looking for a local cleaner. I'd recommend it to anyone that is looking for a professional or service.

Bidvine has such a wide variety of services on their website so you're sure to find what you're looking for. It has everything from photographers to guitar instructors. You name it, it's there.

*This is a collaborative post*


Wednesday, 21 June 2017

This is PND for me

Every time I think of my Postnatal Depression (PND) journey, there is one thing that makes me very upset and that is how long I suffered before I was diagnosed. I don't blame this on anyone and I certainly don't blame my health visitor. In fact she was the one that picked up on my strange behaviour and finally got me to admit everything. I believe it was overlooked on my part due to my total lack of understanding of the mental illness. 

Before I had a better understanding of PND I thought that depression presented itself in one way only, which was all doom and gloom. I thought you had to be crying constantly and basically locking yourself away. Don't get me wrong I do have those emotions and actions but actually my PND presents itself in many different forms.

I think this is such an important thing to comprehend when you are dealing with PND yourself or trying to help someone who is a sufferer. I couldn't recognise my PND as I was dealing with many different symptoms, many of which you may not necessarily associate with a mental health problem.

This is how my PND presents itself, this is PND for me:
  • A low mood - This sometimes lasts an hour, sometimes a few hours, sometimes a day, sometimes a week and sometimes it's extremely prolonged and can last for weeks.
  • Irritable - Every little problem bothers me and I snap very quickly.
  • Feeling ill - When I am suffering I always have a headache or I feel sick.
  • Feeling overwhelmed - The usual day to day tasks that I normally do become too much for me to handle.
  • Lack of concentration - This is always a contradictory symptom as I usually go into overdrive when I have bad days and I create lists of tasks to myself of things I need to achieve which then leads me to have no concentration at all. I am quite zoned out when I am suffering. I am an aware of anything going on around me.
  • Rage - This is one of the surprising symptoms. I become so angry. Everything and anything gets me angry. I have no tolerance for anything. When I was very bad I actually used to smash things to let out my rage.
  • Scary thoughts - This one always frightens me. I constantly run through 'what if' scenarios and send myself into a bit of an emotional frenzy.
  • Insomnia - When I am suffering, I don't sleep. If i'm not crying then I am running through lists in my mind etc and I just can't shut it off.
  • Feeling Guilty - Mum guilt is everywhere in my life but when I am having a lapse with my PND, I feel guilty about everything. I always say I am a rubbish mum and I always feel like I've let my girls down.
  • Comfort eating - My goodness can I put on some weight when I am going through this. I literally eat anything and everything in site to attempt to make myself feel better.
  • Crying - Sometime I cry hysterically for hours on end. I lock myself away and scream.
  • Laughter - This is a symptom I never would have recognised. Sometimes I am unusually happy, I am overly smily and I am constantly laughing. This is a charade. This is to cover up how I am really feeling. I become very silly and very excitable. It's very up and down behaviour. 
  • Workaholic - I get the sense of urgency to please anyone and everyone. I don't like the idea of failure and I like to look busy. I will take on way too many tasks and immerse myself in work, not wanting to let anybody down and especially not myself. 
  • Having cabin fever - I refuse invitations from friends and family. I shut myself away and  make excuses not do to things.
  • Lack of confidence - When I am suffering I lack confidence in every part of my life. That being my body, my mind, my personality, my clothing, my ability to parent etc.
  • Exhaustion - I get so tired. My mind is heavy and my body is heavy.
  • Noise Sensitivity - Suddenly noises all become very loud. Everything hurts my ears and it's all too much.
I'm still yet to overcome my mental illness, maybe I never will but I am now able to recognise my behaviours and symptoms and so is my husband. It's very hard to understand the behaviours of someone with PND when they can present in so many different ways. I guess it's important to recognise erratic behaviour and over compensating when they experience different emotions. 

Some people will never understand how I can behave in these ways especially those that are closest to me and that is because they just aren't used to seeing me that way. Just know that if you have a friend or relative that suffers with PND that they are doing just that. They are suffering. This is not something they asked for. It may change them but if you look closely they are still there deep down. They just need that bit of extra support and patience. 


Travelling with the Omnio stroller

As a family we love to travel. We've never let having children stop us from enjoying travelling the world, we've just embraced it. I won't lie, sometimes family travel can be stressful but the majority of the time it's wonderful. Thankfully there are lots of great products being invented to help make travelling with children easier and stress free.

One of these wonderful inventions is the Omnio Stroller. The stroller was designed by two parents who were looking for something on the market that helped them with days out, travel and the day to day struggles with venturing anywhere with a pushchair. They are from Wales and are a British business which I love. I think it's always great to support anything made from home.

We were recently sent a stroller to review which arrived just in time to take with us on our family holiday to Florida last month. We knew this would be a great opportunity to road test its use when travelling as we would be using it an the airport, at the theme parks and in general day to day. This post will focus on using the Omnio at the airport. 

One of the things that impressed hubby and I was how compact it is when it is folded. We had to drive to the airport and as you can imagine there was hardly any space in the car. Between the 2 adults, 2 kids and car seats, 3 big suitcases and hand luggage, there was little space for a stroller but we obviously had to take one. Luckily, the Omnio folds into a perfect compact size which fits neatly into tight spaces. We actually had it on the floor behind the passenger seat.

Once we arrived at the airport I was able to wear the stroller on my back like a rucksack. This is one of its special, unique features. Both the girls were super excited to be at the airport so they wanted to walk around and explore. 
All of the airport staff were very curious and amazed at the stroller. They all wanted to have a good look at it and were asking lots of questions. 
When we got to security I was very grateful that I had the Omnio. I was able to simply take it off my back and pop it on the x-ray belt with ease. There was no faffing around and it all took literally seconds. Even if one of the girls had been in it at the time, it still would have been a quick and easy process. It folds down very quickly and as i've already mentioned it's compact so you're not worrying about bashing any other passengers with the end of your stroller (yes I have done that before). 

After running around the airport like a lunatic, Eva wanted to be chauffeur driven to the aeroplane. This is one of the great things about the Omnio, it can be used roughly up to the age of 5 unlike other strollers. 

As always we were running a bit late to get to the gate. You know what it's like when you have kids, you are always chasing your tail and then there's toilet breaks etc to contend with. We flew from Manchester airport which is a very big and very busy airport. There were hundreds of people everywhere and of course our gate was quite a walk away from us. This is where the strollers' awesome wheels kicked in to play. 

Daddy took control of the stroller like some kind of racing driver. Lewis Hamilton eat your heart out. The Omnio is very agile which is a result of its ultra responsive wheels. He was able to dodge, weave, pull some swanky backward driving manoeuvres and basically beat everyone to the finish like (aka the gate) in record speed. 
The wheels have a series of curved rollers which allow the stroller to be moved traditionally and also side to side. Daddy and Eva loved this feature. They regularly practised their 'drifts' as they called them, but that's another story. You'll be able to view that in an upcoming youtube video. 

We decided to leave the stroller at the gate. You can actually take it onto the cabin section of the aircraft but we had enough hold allowance for us to leave it underneath. The ability to be able to take it onto the cabin is a fab feature. If you're travelling short haul and are limited on your weight and baggage allowance etc then you can simply carry it onto the plane like a rucksack and leave it in the overhead compartment. This is also handy if you are taking car seats etc too. Most airlines allow limited baby items to be taken without having to pay extra.

Once we arrived in Florida we were able to pop Ophelia in the stroller whilst we were collecting our suitcases. We then made our way to exit the airport. This was like the Krypton factor itself (yes I remember that show). There were various obstacles in our way to get out of the airport but thankfully the stroller was one less thing to worry about. We had stairs, lifts, escalators, heavy suitcases and no help to contend with. The Omnio is very versatile for these such problems as it's light to carry (even when a child is in it), you can fold it up quickly, carry it on your back or simply push it. 

Overall, we found the Omnio stroller perfect for using around an airport. It certainly made our experience a lot easier. Both of the girls enjoyed being in it and both hubby and I found it light to carry and easy to manoeuvre. It's the ideal accompaniment for travel loving families.

Make sure you pop back to my blog soon so you can read about how we got on with it at the Disney theme parks and a review of the stroller overall. 

You can buy one in black, teal or red from various retailers, Stockists which also now includes Mothercare. 

*Thank you to Omnio for sending us a stroller in exchange for our honest opinions*


Sunday, 18 June 2017

Dreaming of Travelling the World with a Lottery Win

As you may know we are a travel loving family. After recently booking our next trip we fantasised about what it would be like to travel the world full time. We'd love to just quit our jobs and take our girls on a worldwide adventure but of course we sadly haven't got the money to do that. We imagined what it would be like to do this if we had a massive lottery win.

We would travel first class by aeroplane to every destination. Imagine that?! No airport queues, a place to yourself on the plane where you could just sit back and relax. If only. If we had a huge lottery win, we could even travel by private jet and live like celebrities. 

Top of our destination list would be a couple of weeks of serene, luxury in the Maldives. We would love to stay in one of those little villas that are out at sea. Just imagine being able to wake up surrounded by all that ocean. 

We'd also visit Santorini. It's a bit closer to home than the Maldives but it still looks breathtaking. It looks like an instagrammer's idea of heaven with all those pristine white buildings against the bright blue skies and sea. 

Even though i've been to New York before, I've always wanted to visit at Christmas time. It always looks so magical. The lights, the snow, the cold and the decorations. I'd love to see the sites and then Christmas shop till I drop. I'd love to shop Pretty Woman style and turn up in a designer shop dressed in awful clothes and just flash the cash.

We would definitely visit DisneyWorld every year. We adore everything about Disney so we'd have as many holiday's there as we could. We'd stay in any of the hotels. In fact if we won lots of money then I think we'd try staying in every single one of the Disney hotels. I'd also stay in the secret suite in Cinderella's castle in Orlando. 

What would be on your bucket list if you could travel the world on a lottery win? We regularly play the UK lottery but did you know that we can actually play the USA lottery online through Lottoland? Signing up to Lottoland gives you access to their draws including the Megamillions which actually created the second biggest jackpot win of all time. With supersize jackpots every week, that's the lottery I need to take part in.

You can also play the Powerball which last year gave away a jackpot over $1.6 billion dollars. Wowzers. What on earth would you do with all that money? I'd have more than world travel on my list of how to spend it. What would you spend it on?

*This is a collaborative post with Lottoland. Please gamble responsibly*


Friday, 16 June 2017

A Family Breakfast at Jamie's Italian

Jamie's Italian in Cardiff has recently launched its brand new breakfast menu. As a family this was something we were rather excited about. We regularly eat at Jamie's for lunch as hubby and I are rather partial to the superfood salad and the kids love the Chicken lollipops. Breakfast is one of our favourite meals of the day and it's always a family affair for us. When we were asked if we would like to try out the menu last weekend, we jumped at the opportunity.

Jamie's Italian Cardiff is right in the city centre with parking and public transport facilities within easy reach. Breakfast is available daily from 9am.

The menu itself is fairly small but to be honest that doesn't put me off. Sometimes I think too much choice can be distracting. It features:
  • The Full Monty £8.95
  • The Half Monty £6.95
  • The Veggie Monty £7.95
  • The Kids Monty £5.25
  • Bacon or Sausage Sarnie £4.95
  • Fruit Market £4.95
  • Smashed Avo on Toast £6.50
  • Eggs Benedict £6.50

The menu is typically Jamie which is great to see. When I think of his breakfast recipes I think of hearty, family food and that's exactly what this menu is.

To get a feel for the menu we all decided to have something different. I chose the Smashed Avo on Toast with a Poached Egg, Arwyn had Eggs Benedict, Eva had the Kids Monty and Ophelia had the Sausage Sarnie. We also ordered a couple of flat whites and the girls had fruit juices.

The food arrived quickly which is always a bonus when you're dining out with kids. My breakfast looked lovely. 

The smashed avocado was presented on a sourdough bread and topped with chilli. The poached egg was an optional extra (you can also have smoked salmon or bacon). It was absolutely delicious. The chilli gave it a mouthwatering kick and livened the dish up. It was a prefect summer breakfast. I will say I felt like I could have eaten more but that may be from the sheer yumminess of it, rather than hunger. 

The Eggs Benedict was well presented. Hubby really enjoyed it, especially the taste of the hollandaise sauce. He did think the portion size was slightly small but he said he wasn't disappointed with his choice and that he would definitely eat it again.

Eva's 'Kid's Monty' was the perfect size. It consisted of potatoes, mushrooms, beans, bacon, sausage and tomato. I asked her what her favourite part of her breakfast was and she said it was the bacon and the beans.

Ophelia's Sausage Sarnie was actually an adult size meal but we got it anyway. She adores sausages for breakfast so we knew she'd enjoy it.

The coffee was fab. It was one of the best ones we've tasted in a while. It was strong and not bitter.

Overall, we really enjoyed our family breakfast. We will definitely be returning and recommending it to friends. The food was tasty and the service was efficient and friendly. I do think that some of the portions could be a bit bigger. I would love to see a few more things added to the children's menu such as smaller portions of the sarnie's and perhaps a yogurt building breakfast where they had a bowl of yogurt and then small pots of various toppings. I know my girls would love something like that.

One of the things I love about Jamie Oliver is his superfood range. I would love to see something like a superfood bowl added to the breakfast menu. It could include Kale, Quinoa, Avocado, Eggs etc. I think that would be a great addition. 

Have you had breakfast at Jamie's Italian? What's your favourite thing to eat at breakfast?

*Jamie's italian invited us for breakfast in exchange for my honest opinion in this blog post*

Hair Loss! The Untold Post Baby Symptom

During both my pregnancies I had the most beautiful hair. It was thick, healthy, it shone and it bounced around like something out of a shampoo advert. It grew fast and it was so easy to manage. Anything I wanted it to do, it did. I could curl it, perfect the mum bun and straighten it. However, no one warned me about hair loss once the baby arrived.

I didn't notice it at first. Let's face it, Why would you? You're so focused on your new arrival. Completely sleep deprived and in unknown territory. Once I was settled into life with a newborn, I started noticing minor changes.

It started to become obvious when I was washing my hair in the shower. Literally clumps of it used to come out. You can imagine the look of horror in my face. I used to panic as I'd think there was something wrong with me. It became so bad that I used to grab my husband every time I washed it to show him how much was coming out.

I'd also have to clean out my hairbrush quite regularly. It was covered in my think, scraggly hair. Where had those beautiful, thick, brunette locks disappeared to?

I tried everything to keep it healthy. I used moroccan oils, I didn't wash it much and I tried not to use any heat on it.

When I had Ophelia, my second baby it got a lot worse. At least on my first it was just the hair loss to contend with. But on my second it was hair loss and regrowth!! It was the same scenario with losing my hair when I was showering etc but a few months down the line I started to find my hair incredibly difficult to manage.

My fringe was where I first noticed it. I'd blow dry and straighten my hair and I'd start to see these tiny, sharp, little hairs at the front. I actually thought they were hairs that my straighteners had broken but honestly they looked like a mans hair would at first. Little spiky bits poking out the top of my head. I was so embarrassed. Then they started growing. 

I asked my hairdresser for advice, as it was driving me crazy. He said unfortunately there was nothing I could do about it. I'd even spoke to my husband about Hair Transplant Cost. I just wanted nice, long, thick hair again. 

It seems to be one of those post baby symptoms that no one tells you about. Every body told me about the tiredness and the hormones making you feel overly emotional but nobody warned me that I would lose any hair or even regrow new baby hair. Perhaps I was just one of the unlucky ones getting some sort of symptom no one else did but i'm sure there are more of you that had the same experience.

Did you lose any hair? How did you look after your hair?

*This is a collaborative post*


Sunday, 11 June 2017

A Timeline of the Mum Hangover

You've got an invite out. Childcare is sorted. You've had the date arranged for months as let's face it, that's how long it takes you and your friends to sort out a date you can all make. The big night arrives. You've been ready since 6pm as you're excited to dress up for a change. You go out thinking you can still handle your drink. Through excitement you drink a bottle of wine in less than an hour. You do shots. You drink, you have fun. You make it through the night, still feeling epic and stumble into a taxi in the early hours of the morning thinking Mama's still got it. You get home, you start to feel a bit wobbly. You open the bedroom window. You jump into bed and bam, let the Mum hangover commence. 

3.00am - Your tummy starts hurting. You're tossing at turning. You feel like you've been asleep for hours but when you look at the clock it has only be 15 minutes.

3.20am - You can't shake that rumbling in your belly. Are you going to be sick? Yes you're going to be sick? No it's ok, you feel fine.

3.22am - Oh shit where's the toilet. Yep you've been sick. You hate yourself and you're never drinking again.

3.30am - You get back into bed. Back into that deep sleep.

3.50am - You're gonna be sick again. This time you take a pillow with you to the toilet. Doesn't that bathroom look like the most comfiest bedroom in the world right now.

4.30am - The baby starts crying. Oh for FFS!!! You get up, you wobble your way to the nursery. Your head is pounding. You deal with the baby and stumble back to bed.

6am - Your child has come into the room. What's that bouncing on the bed. Your head is pounding. They are using your body as a trampoline. OH MY GOD. You look at the clock and realise you've had about an hours sleep. You reluctantly get up. You feel better than you thought. Uh oh is Mama still pissed?

6.10am - You lie on the sofa, you're very tired. TV is the only way to occupy your child. Peppa Pig it is.

6.30am - You are cursing that damn Pig. Your ears are still ringing, your head is still pounding. That theme tune is going around and around in your head. You find some paracetamol.

7.30am - Breakfast time. You really want a greasy fry up. You make one. The kids want cereals. However, when they see your breakfast they want it. You pass it over cause that's what mums do and you eat the bowl of rice krispies. 

7.45am - Your tummy is turning over. You're not going to be sick again surely?

8.30am - You feel like you've been awake for a lifetime. Could this day get any longer. You decide to get dressed and attempt to do something. You jump in the shower and the scent of Tequila and Sambuca starts oozing from your skin. Where's the toilet??!!

9.00am - You try and help get the kids dressed. Yes child wear whatever you want. You attempt to change the baby but as you kneel down your whole body starts feeling heavy as if a rock has just landed on your back. Your head is thumping. You want to cry. You question your existence and your life.

11.00am - TV has become your best friend today. You've plonked the kids in-front of it and have found the reruns of Paw Patrol almost hypnotic. It's made you paralysed to the sofa. You just can't move.

12.00pm - Kids have raided the treat cupboard. Finally an epic idea you can jump on board with. Yes kids let's eat everything and that crisp sandwich sounds like an awesome idea for lunch.

13.00pm - Your eyes are heavy. Every inch of your body is aching. Maybe you're getting the flu? Why does your body hurt so much to move? It couldn't possibly be all the alcohol or the dancing you did. You proclaim your innocence to everybody. It wasn't the alcohol, you are a responsible person after all. You're definitely coming down with something.

15.00pm - You're head is still pounding but now it's also from the lego that's being bashed on your head constantly. Suddenly every noise becomes unbearable and loud. The jumperoo tune is going constantly, Nick Jr songs are on repeat. You question how loud your child is. Maybe they have a problem with their hearing? They can't be that loud surely?

16.00pm - You're counting the hours down until bedtime. You hate your life!

17.00pm - Dinner time! Whoooooop! You've been ravenous all day. You gulp it down in record time but that tummy cramp comes back.

18.00pm - You have a date with that beloved toilet again. Vom! You've also been at this toilet with your bad belly more times than you care for. You've pooped more times than your baby does in a day. You question what has happened to your body.

19.00pm - You've made it to bedtime. Routine goes out of the window, No bath this evening, no bedtime story, let's just all go to sleep. 

20.00pm - You're going to have an early night cause you're so tired. But wait, you've got so much to do. School uniforms to prepare, ironing, washing, cleaning. 

21.00pm - You are never, ever drinking again. You've told everyone, next time you will just have one drink and be sensible. This has been the longest day in the history of the world.

23.30pm - The baby is crying. Do I ever get any sleep? Ever!!?!!!! You and your partner have a barny. You get up and deal with the baby.

23.45pm - You reach for more paracetamols but you've popped so many that day you've ran out. You curse. You curse everything.

6.00am the following day - Boing, boing. Wakey, wakey. It's a new day but that body of yours still feels heavy and you're still tired.

16.00pm the following day - You're still tired, your body still aches all over. You declare you are never, ever going out again. You keep asking yourself why were you so stupid? Why was I so irresponsible?

13.00pm +2 days - Why are you still so tired? You still feel rough. You're too old for all this shit! Never again.

20.00pm + 3 days - You receive a message in your what's app group conversation with your mates. How fun was the other night? When shall we do it again? You arrange a date. See you in 3 months.

Thank you to Pudding and Chops for sending me these hilarious milestone cards. You can get your own alternative milestone cards here, Pudding and Chops.


Saturday, 10 June 2017

Arranging a blogger weekend gathering

One of the best things to emerge from my life as a blogger is the amazing friendships I have formed. If someone would have said to me that your closest friends will be online friends, some of which you have never met, I would have laughed out loud. However, this is the truth. 

I am so lucky to have found a group of amazing ladies who I chat with every day. We started off just talking about blogging and our friendships blossomed. We all tell each other everything and help each other in so many ways. I feel so blessed to have them in life.

However, some of these ladies I have never met in real life. Can you believe it?! It's pretty shocking really. I feel so close to them yet we've never even been in the same room. We all live quite far apart and are based all over The UK and one is based in Qatar. This proves rather difficult when trying to arrange get togethers.

However, this summer we are all going to be in THE UK at the same time and therefore we are planning a get together. Not just a quick meet, we want a whole girly weekend together to have fun and create memories. 

We've been looking into where to go and places to stay. We thought about a spa weekend or staying in a hotel but we've decided that cottages for large party groups would be better suited for us as we are a group of 12 and we'd all like to be in the same place.

Image taken from Party Houses

We've been browsing the website Party Houses which has some incredible properties. There are many different venues to choose from such as barns, cottages, houses and villas. 

We love the idea of all of us sharing the same space and not being too cramped. We've got visions of a sleepover style night where we'll all get into our pyjamas and have a takeaway and a pamper session. We'd have our nails painted, our hair done and facials. We want relaxation but also fun. 

This would then be followed by a wild night. A night of partying. We're imagining getting dressed up and having dinner. Then we'd party the night away, playing drinking games, singing on the karaoke and dancing until our feet hurt. None of this could be achieved in a hotel.

We basically want a weekend of no parenting and time to be ourselves and enjoy each others company. Being bloggers it would have to be somewhere that is pretty enough for instagram as i'm sure we'll be taking lots of pictures. You know what we're like. 

I honestly cannot wait to meet all of these ladies. To be able to give them a real hug and not a virtual one. To be able to see their faces and hear their accents. It's going to be fab. Watch this space. 

*This is a collaborative post*


Celebrating World Gin Day with the Park Plaza Cardiff

You may or may not know but today is World Gin Day. Now I can honestly say some of these food and drink days never make much sense to me but this one I can certainly jump on board with as I am a self proclaimed Gin lover. 

When I was younger I have to admit I thought Gin was somewhat of a nana drink consumed by the old people of society. It certainly wasn't a drink I wanted to try and when I did I wasn't keen. However, all that changed as I grew older. Since motherhood you will always find bottles of Gin stacked in my cupboard. After all how could I call myself a mum blogger if I didn't drink Gin. If i'm not drinking a bottle of Rioja, you will find me with a Gin and tonic in hand.

Gin drinking has certainly evolved over the years. Gone are the days when you would have a simple Gin and Tonic (G&T). You can now enjoy Gins in different flavours, with different tonics and accompaniments and in various cocktails. Move over Vodka, Gin is now the drink of choice for the cool people.

When the Park Plaza Cardiff contacted me and asked if I would like to come along to their Laguna Bar and sample their new Gin and Tonic menu, it was an offer I was not going to refuse. Their new menu contains 19 different kinds of Gin which can be paired with Fever-Tree premium tonic waters. 

The intimate event was held a couple of nights ago for a few local bloggers who all have a passion for Gin. It was lead by bartender Adam who is a gin-thusiast who was absolutely brilliant and very knowledgable.

He guided us through a Gin journey which saw us trying 5 different Gins; Sipsmith, Brecon, Caorunn, Opihr and Monkey 47. I'd previously tried Sipsmith but all the others were a new experience for me.

My favourite of the sampling menu was the Scottish Caorunn. Adam prepared the drink with an Apple garnish and Elderflower tonic mixer. It was like nothing i've ever tasted in the Gin world. It was fruity, refreshing and instantly transported me to a summers day. 

I learnt a lot about Gin pairings and what garnishes work best with what types of Gins. I'll fully admit that I only ever used to use a Lemon or Lime in my Gin but thanks to Adam's expertise I am now a Gin snob, hehe. It was a fab evening with lots of delicious food and drink and great company. I am certainly looking forward to going back to Laguna Bar and trying out the rest of their extensive menu. 

Photo taken by The Park Plaza


Thursday, 8 June 2017

Dreaming of a loft conversion

As I sit here writing this, I am sat on my sofa, cushions all around me. I have a cup of tea to my right and there is silence. Sounds wonderful right…wrong. As I take my glance above my laptop I see the chaos that surrounds me. I see the toys that are supposed to be in one corner, scattered all over the floor and general mess which the girls have created.

I’m sat here wishing we had more space. Suddenly the house seems very small. We live in the middle of a block of townhouses so we will never be able to extend. The only thing we could do would be to convert our attic.

Now I know chaos and mess comes with the territory of having kids but I feel like I need an area where I can just shut off. A quiet, place of my own would be ideal for when I am working.

Converting the attic would be a dream. I would have it monochrome styled as I think that’s simple but modern and it wouldn’t be too distracting for when I was working.

I’d like some motivational quote prints on the walls and some black and white pictures of our family.

I’d like it to be really light and airy. I’d have two windows either side like the roof windows of solstro. This would create so much light and make it a bright, serene place.

I’d also have a comfy chair or day bed in the corner. This would be for if I fancied reading a book.

How would you create your space if you could convert your attic? All that’s left for me to do is to convince my hubby.

*This is a collaborative post*
Blogger Template Created by pipdig