National Wallpaper Week

Did you know it was National Wallpaper Week? - 5th - 11th

In celebration of National Wallpaper Week, each day Graham & Brown  have dedicated a theme:
  • Monday – ‘Date Night’
  • Tuesday – Calm
  • Wednesday – Inspired
  • Thursday – Nostalgic
  • Friday – Funky
  • Saturday – Glamorous
  • Sunday – Social
The themes celebrate the versatility of wallpaper and what it can bring to your room/home.If you're one of those people who thinks that wallpaper is so yesterday, then you are missing out! Recent years wallpaper has made a comeback and this is due to all the wonderful designs available. Wallpaper can offer a unique pattern and bring a whole lot of character, texture and warmth to any room.  

Graham & Brown features  wallpaper with big name designers as well as their own designs, they offer a huge range - there is something for everyone, no matter what you taste is.

As it is Friday, I thought I would share with you the funky wallpaper designs I have my eye on for our home:
Funky means - something artistic, modern, unconventional or cool. 

Trippy wallpaper - takes you back to the 1960s and 1970s. Super funky and very stylish. This would be great fun and brighten up any room - but I am thinking for the dining room it would be perfect.

Deco Diamond Green by Hemingway - A deco design, beautiful colours of a subtle green, taking you back to the 1030s, perfect for most rooms, but I would have it in my living room as a feature wall.

Carnival Zest by Hemingway -  Fascinating and funky, a contemporary graphic design with a bold print. This would be perfect for my teenage sons bedroom, adding character to his room.

Do The Stretch Mustard by Hemingway - 1970s glam rock with a slight hint of space odyssey. unusual and fun, but perfectly subtle and welcoming for the hall way. 

What is your favourite design?

Food and Drink Review Round-up

This past month we have been busy reviewing some fantastic new foods and drinks - we got to try a new and different sauce which is designed and made for breakfast, some tasty and refreshing drinks, breakfast biscuits (my favourite), the new Old El Paso wraps and new and exciting jelly drinks designed for children.

Premium Inn's Purple Sauce:

A condiment with a twist - Purple Sauce, a new and unique sauce and it tastes yummy. 

An unusual colour, purple with a unique smokey flavour.  The sauce's base is blackberry and includes a range of natural ingredients – including cracked black pepper, crushed chillies, toasted cumin and smoked salt. The sauce has no artificial colours or flavourings, is suitable for vegetarians.

A very tasty alternative, perfect with an omelette, or a bacon butty or great with a fry up. It has a zingy and quite a sweet smokey flavour - very nice indeed.

belVita Soft Bakes:

My favourite breakfast snacks brand introduced a new range called, Soft Bakes.  

Available in three different varieties: Golden Grain, Red Berries or Chocolate Chips, belVita’s Soft Bakes combine delicious flavours with a light and soft texture. Soft Bakes offer a nutritious and tasty breakfast, allowing you to have a convenient on the go breakfast.

Made with five whole grains and rich in cereals, the brand new Soft Bakes offer a great source of fibre, containing vitamins B6, magnesium and iron. The only soft biscuit with proven sustainable energy* with slow release carbohydrates.

belVita’s Soft Bakes Bakery will be touring the UK for 7 weeks from w/c 7 September. Make sure you keep an eye out, for your chance to enjoy free samples of the new soft range.

For further information, visit 

Just Drink Aloe:

Just Drink Aloe, cleanse, aids detox and supports your digestive system, infuse you with energy (and it is low in sugar) and is also great for your skin. A much healthier option than fizzy or other drinks available.

Just Drink Aloe is vegetarian society certified, gluten free, lactose free and made from real aloe vera and not from powder like most other aloe vera drinks.

We were sent three bottles from aloe vera drink range to try out and review, one original flavour, Mango and Passionfruit. Just Drink Aloe drinks are very refreshing, with little bits of pulp which explodes flavour into your mouth, and overall just a great drink.

You can buy these via their website:

Naturelly Jelly Juice

It's both a snack and a drink!

Naturally is an all-natural gelatine free Jelly Juice drink made from tasty fresh fruit juice and gellan gum. Naturelly is the perfect healthy treat - they come in a squeeze pouch with a screw top lid. 

The jelly is made from a Gellan Gum which is a dietary fibre that helps fill your child up for longer and suppressing those snack attacks!

Gelatine free, no added sugars or sweeteners, but with added vitamins A, C & E.

Available in three different flavours: Summer Fruits, Totally Tropical and Apple.

Perfect for packed lunches or lunch time drinks / snacks.

You can buy Naturally via their website or in any Wholefoods Market store. : 

Old El Paso Restaurante Soft Taco Kit:

We love Old El Paso! Every weekend we have an Old El Paso 'Mexican' feast night - we buy a mix of wraps, boats and tacos, we add some rice and chips and we have a great meal. It's fun, tasty and the kids love it.Old El Paso have released their newest range, called Restaurante - a soft taco kit. Available in four different flavours:
  • Steak Carne Asada
  • Pork El Pastor 
  • Chicken Tinga 
  • Baja Fish
We loved these so much, they will now be a weekly addition to our Mexican feast night!
All four flavours are widely available at all major supermarkets (Asda, Sainsbury’s Waitrose, Tesco and Morrisons). Please note Pork Al Pastor is available exclusively in Asda for 6 months.

To find out more visit #cooklikethelocals

Dry Kids Waterproof Jackets

If it is going to rain, you can almost guarantee it will rain on school runs.

Typical British weather is, mostly wet in the mornings and then come the afternoon we always get ominous black clouds and bang on the school run there is total downpour. 

It's not just the school runs though, it happens when we go to take the dogs out for a walk, or we've made plans to go down the park for the afternoon. Rain can spoil your fun  - or does it?!  The kids don't mind the rain, and they especially love the puddles. 

There is no such thing as bad weather, just unsuitable clothing.

There is nothing wrong with being outside in the rain, it can be fun - as long as you have on suitable clothing, waterproofs, wellies, umbrella etc. then why not get outside.

Dry Kids sent us one of their Waterproof Jackets - Jacob chose green, but it is available in 5 other colours and costs just £9.95 - which is excellent value for money.

This waterproof jacket is perfect for those rainy days - it done us well when we went to Center Parcs and every day on the school runs, it keeps Jacob dry and warm - although, when it starts to get colder, he will need to wear a jumper underneath to keep him warm, as this is a rain jacket and not a winter coat.  

The Dry Kids Waterproof Jacket is a hooded zip coat, where the cuffs are elasticated keeping out the rain, with velcro hood straps, and two front pockets. The hood also can fold away into the collar.  

In addition, the whole thing folds compactly into itself in the front zip pocket, which is perfect for storing it away at home, or maybe to keep in your handbag etc.

This Dry Kids Jacket is a great jacket that keeps your child dry, and it is truly excellent value for money. 


OXELO B1 Scooter

Children love scooters, they are everywhere - down the park, on the way to school, downtown and in the gardens. This is because they are fun, light-weight, portable, fast - perfect for zipping around.

Summer is at that age where she is getting too big for her buggy, she doesn't want to sit in it, she wants to walk, but as she is little she has little tolerance for walking long distances. She ends up wanting a carry - not to sit back in her buggy, no, she wants a carry. This is not ideal for when we take the dogs for a walk or if we walk to school etc. This is where a scooter fits in perfectly.

Recently, decathlon sent us their 
OXELO B1 Scooter (appropriate for kids ages 2-4) for Summer to try.

A very light-weight, but robust scooter, it is customable with the ability to change the coloured shells that you can fix straight onto the frame. It has a height-adjustable handlebars with three wheels making it a great balance scooter. Summer quickly mastered the technique of riding her 
OXELO B1 Scooter and she was soon whizzing around the pavements leading the way on our dog walks. 

These scooters are ideal for short walks, perfect to just grab and go. Simple to use and fun. 
They will help develop your child’s motor skills, balance skills, self-confidence, and of course, it will keep them fit and active.

Available in 5 different colours (Summer choose Yellow), RRP £22.99 - this OXELO B1 Scooter will make a great gift for any 2-4 year old.

Family Holiday 2015

Our summer holiday didn't quite go to plan this year.  We didn't have the hot weather, white beaches, poolside sun lounges holiday we had planned for. But instead had something I think was far better - a staycation in the heart of the beautiful Wiltshire woods. There was no sunbathing, no lounging about, no white beaches, instead was the beautiful scenery, the wildlife, and the great British outdoors. 

We had booked a week at the start of the school holidays to Tunisia. As you can imagine, with all the terrible events that happened in Sousse, it was understandably cancelled - we looked at changing destination, but due to costs, and the fact that hubby and I lost all the enthusiasm to going abroad, we decided to do a staycation.

So we ended up putting the money in the house, decorating both the boys room and we booked a nice week in Center Parcs. Unfortunately, our teenage son didn't want to come with us, he wanted to stay home - my step-daughter and her partner were looking after the house and the dogs anyhow, so he stayed home with them.

We had an amazing time (apart from missing my oldest), the kids loved it which is what was the main thing. As long as they are happy I am happy. 

We spent most the days walking and swimming.

We had planned to do loads around Wilshire etc. to visit many tourist locations, but Center Parcs kept us fully occupied, and we only ventured out on one day.

Of course we couldn't have left without visiting Longleat Safire Park - after years of wanting to visit, we got to finally go. And, it was as amazing as I wanted it to be. Nothing like I expected, but still amazing. We were so impressed we will definitely be returning, hopefully, next year.

As we were checking into our villa, I looked out the window and spotted two deers.  The kids loved it, the deers were relaxing near our lodge and we watched them for a couple of hours - one even came right near our window and grazed.

We fed the squirrels every morning - there were quite a few that visited us throughout the week.

We spent hours walking, we went out in the morning and didn't return to the villa until late in the evening most days - Longleat Center Parcs is very hilly, so we got lots of exercise. There was a land train, but the kids preferred to walk.

During our walks each day we would we visited the many different play parks.

The kids love crazy golf, and we spent a good hour trying to master the indoors crazy golf - Summer got a bit bored..

We loved the woodlands walks.

Lewis completed the indoor wall climbing, he found it very challenging, but thoroughly enjoyed it - I was really proud of him as normally he doesn't like to do anything that involves heights etc. Jacob, decided not to do it himself, but he said next time he will. 

We couldn't leave our villa without having a BBQ, even under an umbrella - in the typical British 'August' weather, of course, it rained.

The week went far too quickly, we had an active, fun, relaxing time and we can't wait to return.

Silent Sunday


Bingocams Live Win Moment

Whilst at college I worked in a bingo hall, and when I look back at my job and I only have happy memories. Bingo is more than playing and winning, it is about the community.  Many people play Bingo for the social aspect, and the community spirit. Yes, they love the game, and love winning, but it is so much more than that. They go for the chatter and of course, to catch up on the gossip, thus, it is a friendly environment - one big community.

The big difference with online bingo is, you miss the face to face social aspect - well until then that all changed for the online bingo game.

Bingocams is a bingo community where you play live, hopefully, win and you get to meet people; and you get to experience people winning - all via the webcam. 

It is a pretty fun experience!

When a  player wins, their webcam captures the moment of joy and celebration and the short video is immediately streamed to all other players in the room. 

As well as playing Bingo, you can link up with a few fellow players in a private webcam chat whilst playing the game together. Bingocams brings back the essential social element that bingo is so renowned for:  the chatter, the gossip, and the environment.