Friday, 27 March 2015

Tenby & Our Bluestone Adventure

Looking back at the photos from our Bluestone adventure recently, I realised that I haven't shared those from our day trip to Tenby. Tenby is such a beautiful town,  and the day we were visiting, the sun was shining ( even though it was freezing) and we had a gorgeous day out. We were very fortunate to have top tour guides with us who hail from the next village along, they made sure we saw all the best bits. 

We drove from Bluestone to South Beach in Tenby, the drive took around 30 minutes so it really is very close if you're visiting Bluestone National Park Resort and are thinking of doing some day trips. There is some parking at South Beach but I imagine that come summer, it would be packed! The beach itself is gorgeous with light sands and twinkling turquoise seas. Living in the UK, I often forget that we have such beautiful beaches on our doorstep.


We walked along the esplanade to a little playground for the kids. This surely has to be the playground with the best view in all of Wales but it was seriously cold so we didn't hang around for long and even the children didn't protest when we left!





We carried on along the coastal path, past the view of St Catherine's island and beautiful pastel hued town houses and in to the town itself.
As a family, we have travelled quite a bit around the world but comparatively we haven't seen all that much of the UK. Tenby really defies all the preconceived ideas I had of what a British seaside town would be like, it has some serious charm. We would love to go back in the summer when it's a bit warmer to enjoy the beach a little more.









Come lunchtime, we braved the windy walk back to South Beach and stopped for something to eat at South Beach Bar and Grill. With the sun streaming through the windows and the views of the beach, I found it hard to believe that we weren't in some far flung exotic location.

After lunch, sadly it was time to drive back to dreary old London Town. Bluestone & Tenby we had an amazing time and I hope we'll be back soon!!

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Wednesday, 25 March 2015

GlossPod

I have had quite a few manicures in my time and I like to think of myself as a bit of a connoisseur, as you may well have guessed :) So when GlossPod contacted me a few weeks ago to review their new service, I was of course more than happy to offer my expert opinion! GlossPod is a genius new London service that delivers high quality nail treatments to your home, office or even hotel. You can book either online or via their app, it's like Uber but for nails!


Booking was really straight forward, I created an account and then selected a date & time. I was then shown all the nail technicians available along with a profile. GlossPod offers traditional manicures and pedicures either using Essie nail polish or Shellac long lasting gel. I chose a Gel Mani & Pedi, I wouldn't normally bother with gel on my toes as regular polish lasts really well on my toes but I couldn't find an option for that combination. So gel Mani & Pedi it was!



My manicurist was a lovely lady called Mo, she was absolutely meticulous and gave me a perfect manicure and pedicure. The nicest thing about having a nail treatment at home was that I didn't feel at all rushed as I often do in salons and consequently I found it far more relaxing. Mo brought a  great collection of Shellac polish with her, plenty of reds, nudes and some gorgeous unusual shades. I had difficulty choosing but in the end I plumped for a cool navy for my fingers called Indigo Frock and a deep red called Scarlet Letter for my toes.


As a mama of two small children, it's often hard for me to find time to go to the nail salon so I find at home treatments really convenient. I have tried a few at home beauty services before and I have found them a bit hit & miss but I was super impressed with GlossPod and was thrilled to get a good 2 weeks out of my Shellac on my fingers and my toes are still going strong. I found the booking system very straight forward and it's all paid for upfront so you don't have to worry about cash. I especially love the emergency button which allows for any repairs needed in times of a nail crisis.


Book your mani & pedi at home, at work and even at your hotel room if you're in town at www.glosspod.com
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Friday, 13 March 2015

Vue Cinemas Family People's Pundit

Vue Cinemas are giving one person the amazing opportunity to go see an unlimited amount of family films for one year with their little ones! How cool is that? We've been taking my three year old to the cinema for about a year now and I just love seeing her face light up when the film starts and the discussions afterwards are adorable. 

This is a competition for all mummy’s and daddy’s to take part in, to become the official family film viewer and reviewer of the year. Vue want to give you and your family the chance to not only go see the new Disney Cinderella at the end of this month but any family film of your choice throughout the year. How amazing does the new Cinderella film look? the trailer reminds me of Stardust which is one of my all time favourite films!



To win the annual all you need to do is tweet or share a Facebook status  i.e.140 characters or less sharing your thoughts on family film of your choice? More information on their competition page here: http://www.myvue.com/film-news/article/title/peoples-pundit-for-family-could-you-be-our-next-film-critic. You can review any film, new or old just use the hashtag #vuepeoplespundit. e.g. you could post a brief status update on how you all loved Frozen



After the closing date, vue will then shortlist 25 of the best tweets or Facebook statuses to view an exclusive preview screening of Cinderella on the 27th March at a Vue cinema near you. Those shortlisted will be asked to write a short review of 250 words sharing their family's views on the film which will them be uploaded to their social voting platform. The person with the most votes on social media will become Vue’s Official Family Film Pundit and will win an unlimited pass for themselves and their family to see any film that they like, throughout the year.

*if you cannot attend the Exclusive preview screening of Cinderella on 27th March, they are happy for you to view it anytime at a Vue cinema near you.
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Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Babysitters of Kensington & Chelsea

I have been a Mama for a little over three and a half years, and in that time I have never used a Babysitter, until now! When we have had nights off in the past, we have relied on Grandparents but as they all live out of town, date nights have been few and far between. Most of my friends use babysitters regularly and they all think I'm nuts for not trying this out before, and since we have found Bokac, in hindsight I was a bit crazy. My main reason for not using a babysitter was really that I was concerned the children might wake up and be frightened to find a stranger at home rather than Mummy & Daddy.



When Babysitters of Kensington & Chelsea (or BOKAC as they are know) contacted me to trial their service a few weeks ago, Mr Jones and I did have a good long think to weigh up the pros and cons. BOKAC is a clever local babysitting service that enables parents to book experienced babysitters online. 

After a few e-mails with Anna, the owner of BOKAC, we decided that the best way to go about this would to book the babysitter for just before the children's bed time. That way, they could get to know her and wouldn't be alarmed should they wake up when we were out for dinner. 

The next step was to book a babysitter on the BOKAC website. Each babysitter has a detailed profile on line, listing their qualifications, experience, interests and even languages spoken. Anna advised me to pick a few Babysitters and they then accept or decline your booking depending on their availability. The whole process is paid for online and the standard fee is a very reasonable £10/ hour, all babysitters live locally so no travel expenses are incurred. 

Our babysitter was Tiffany, she was very punctual and had a very friendly but no nonsense approach to the children, they both took an instant liking to her. Although Tiffany was quite happy to put the children to bed, Mr Jones and I didn't want to unsettle them too much so we tucked them in ourselves. I had planned plenty of activities to tire them out that day and thankfully they were both asleep in record time. 

Mr Jones and I snuck out of the house like naughty teenagers, not quite believing our luck that the children were both asleep before 8 and that we were actually getting a night off!!! I had always imagined that the first time we used a babysitter, I would be so nervous that I wouldn't enjoy myself but that wasn't the case at all. I felt completely at ease leaving the children at home in Tiffany's reliable care. 



We booked dinner at Bumpkin, it is one of our favourite restaurants but it is also quite close to home in case of emergencies. I did text Tiffany whilst we were having dinner and she reassured me that everything was fine. Typically we were served in record time and before we knew it, it was time to go back home. 

I have come to realise that whilst I adore my children, it is really important for my hubby and I to have some time to ourselves on a regular basis and I will most certainly be using BOKAC again. I found the whole process really efficient and stress free. The online booking system is really easy to use and I like the fact that it's all paid for via the website so you don't have to worry about cash. Importantly, the babysitter herself was absolutely fantastic and I would be more than happy to have her look after the children again. I only wish that I had come across Bokac sooner!

www.bokac.co.uk


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Tuesday, 10 March 2015

Quick Mama Make-up & My First Ever Vlog!!!

This is my first ever YouTube video, I have wanted to try vlogging for such a long time and I finally plucked up the courage to give it a shot. I'm so nervous to share this with you but I do hope you enjoy it!



Since I returned to work from maternity leave, I managed to get my make-up routine down to about 5 minutes. I've taken slightly longer here in this video but I though I would share with other Mamas and busy ladies, how you can apply full make-up, that lasts all day in record time!




Products I used:

Nars All day luminous weightless foundation in Vallauris
Rimmel Stay Matte Pressed Powder in Sandstorm
Bourjois Colorband 2-in-1 Eyeshadow & Liner in Brun Dadaiste
Sleek Eyebrow Stylist in Light
Bourjois Délice de Poudre bronzing powder & highlighter ( I only used the bronzer)
MAC Powder Blush in Foolish Me
Maybelline Babylips Electro in Oh! Orange




For me, one of the most important things about make-up now that I am a mama, is finding products that look good all day long. If you have any recommendations for good long lasting products then let me know. Application is also really important so I would also recommend investing in good brushes, but that's another blog/vlog post altogether!




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