First Couples Holiday? Make It A Trip To Remember With These Top Tips


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Your first holiday together as a couple is an exciting step in your relationship. It shows trust, commitment and that you both want your relationship to progress forward. But it can also have a negative outcome too. Some couples are not always ready to spend so much time alone together and could break up as a result. This is usually due to lack of planning and compromise. So to make this holiday the first of many, here are some top tips to make it a roaring success.

Have a practice run first

Instead of just planning a two week holiday straight away, think about planning a practise holiday first. You could have a weekend break at Hoburne Holiday Parks or spend a few days exploring London or Manchester. This will give you the opportunity to get used to being together 24/7 and see what interests you both have. You might realise you love the same kind of attractions or have different interests. Doing this will give you a good indication of whether you’re both ready to go on a big holiday and what kind of trips and activities you could plan.  Plus if it doesn’t go quite to plan, you don’t have an awkward long haul flight to deal with.


Research your destination

If you think you’re ready to go on holiday together, it’s time to start looking at possible destinations. Don’t just book your trip without doing plenty of research into destinations beforehand. Or you could end up going somewhere entirely unsuitable. Try to do this research together using holiday websites, reviews and brochures to help you. You need to find somewhere that caters to both of your needs and interests to make it as enjoyable as possible. Be considerate of each other’s opinions and compromise when appropriate. That way you should find a destination that is perfect for you and your partner, rather than just you alone.

Try something different

This holiday is the ideal opportunity for you and your partner to try something different. Try to find an activity neither of you have done before at your holiday destination. It could be going on a cruise, going sky diving or visiting a theme park. While you will obviously have your own interests, make the effort to push your boundaries and do something you wouldn’t usually do. This will not only make this holiday more memorable, but it will also help you get to know each other a lot better.



Don’t overload your schedule

It’s good to have some activities planned for your holiday before you leave. But if you fill up your schedule too much it may make your holiday feel too much like hard work. This can lead to arguments that could have been easily avoided. You may find there are places to see and attractions that you hadn’t see online that interest you both. So give yourself some free time just to go with the flow and just enjoy being together.


With these tips to help you, there’s no reasons why you can’t enjoy every second of your holiday together.

Blockpod


Living in a fairly small flat has meant for us that storage solutions are essential. 
We don't own Lego yet which I am sure will change but Blake loves playing with 
Megabloks at the moment. When I was asked if I was interested in trying out Blockpod I jumped at the chance as I thought it would be ideal for storing Blake's Megabloks in so that we could save room in his toy box but also have them on display in his room.

When it arrived I was very impressed with the design of it. 
I love that it is clear so that you can see the Lego, Megabloks or any other toys you may choose to use it for.  The plastic is quite sturdy too which is obliviously important when you have adventurous kids.  

To open it you have to turn the lid anticlockwise I had to have a few goes at this as it was tricky to open to begin with. As I've got use to it though its now pretty easy to open. 




Basically you have 4 layers of storage  where you have 3 different plastic grids in the bottom of each section, each a different color. And the holes in the grid are different sizes as well for your different sizes of Lego to sift through. 

One of the things that grabbed my attention to it is that you don't have to use it just for Lego you can take out the grid's and use it as toy storage. I also love that some point this year Blockpod are going to be releasing more grids, layers and lids. I love the idea that by buying more layers and grids you can increase the size meaning you can store more Lego and/or toys. 

Another great thing is the 15 year warranty on any of the parts that become faulty during its ownership. 

We've been using the Blockpod for over a week now and love how its such a handy storage solution for us. Once Blake gets Lego I know this storage solution will be used even more and I would consider buying the additional grids and layers.    




What do you think of the concept of Blockpod? 
Would this be a handy storage solution for you? 

*Disclaimer I received this product  in exchange for an honest review all thoughts and opinions
are my own. 

Our Easter Weekend

Easter weekend has been and gone pretty quick this year. 
However we have made the most of it as a family with a few days out. 

Friday was rather a relaxed day with popping to town followed by playing cars and ball games with 
Blake as well as reading some of his books to him. 

Saturday we went to Mead Open Farm, we had booked tickets online in advance as 
they worked out slightly cheaper to purchase than at the gate.
Mead Open Farm had a Easter Bunny Bonanza on which was included in the admission price. 
We got a chance to explore  Hoppy the Easter Bunny’s wonderful themed Easter Garden. plus we was able to  earn a chocolate treat by hunting for eggs and even meet REAL Easter Chicks and lambs!

As this time of year little ones love going to the farm its always best to keep little hands germ free at the farm 
here are so great tips: 

Keep a close eye on kids and animals: 
Children will quite happily feed the lambs and straight away put their fingers in their own mouths, even if you’ve told them not to! Pay close attention when feeding animals and give hands a good  clean with sanitizer  such as NatraSan when the need arises.

Pack an effective disinfectant
Packing a safe disinfectant that has the ability to sanitise a number of different surfaces is vital to keep your family clean at farms. NatraSan First Aid spray kills 99.9999% of germs.

Always wash with soap and water:
As well as having a handy bottle of sanatizer with you, it is wise to ensure everyone washes hands with warm soap and water after petting or feeding the animals and again before eating. 
Mead Open Farm has quite a few sinks for hand washing dotted around.

Don’t forget about your mouth:
 Little fingers are always going in mouths and this is a common way for germs to be spread. Always clean little hands regularly just in case your child touches an animal and then sucks their thumb, for eg. 


   








Mead open farm was such an enjoyable family day out which I would love to do again. 
As Blake gets older I know he will love it more, learning about the animals etc but also
summer time will be an ideal time to go again to make another day of it. 
Once we had been to the farm we headed off to the in laws for a lovely early Easter meal and Blake was spoilt with some lovely gifts which he loves. 

On Easter Sunday we didn't have anything really planned but as a spur of the moment we
 decided to go to the Leighton Buzzard Narrow Gauge Railway which is literally on our doorstep near enough. 
Blake loved the train ride although to be begin with wasn't too keen on the horn to begin with but then soon settled and was fine. When we arrived at the Stonehenge Works we ended up getting off the train and enjoying the Easter egg hunt in which we found a golden ticket for Blake which meant he got a special Easter egg from the Easter bunny. 





Easter Monday was also another relaxed day and we ended up going for a little walk along the canal as well. 




I hope you all have a wonderful weekend I'd love to know what you all got up to. 
Did any of you going to the farm ? or do an Easter egg hunt with the kids?

Spring Menu At The Horse And Jockey


The Table Table restaurants have released a new menu in time for spring. 
When I was invited to go and review it at one of the local branches, I couldn't say no! 
We went yesterday evening after Stuart had finished work and Blake had fun spending time
with his Granny and Grandpa at home. 

The Horse and Jockey is situated just off the A5. It is easy to find and has a large car park, 
which I happened to noticed also had some disabled parking as well. 
Horse and Jockey are close to Dunstable Downs & Whipsnade Zoo, so  they are perfectly placed for family days out. The garden looks like the ideal spot for a bite to eat during the summer months. 



We actually arrived earlier than the table was booked for as we had chosen the table to be booked for 6:30 pm just in case of rush hour traffic.
We went in and told them that we had a reservation but we were early, however they were more than happy to show us to our table and let us order. 
We got to sit at a table that was looking out the window so that we had the view of the road and countryside. 


Once we were seated we asked to have a look at the wine menu. 
Unfortunately as the spring menu is just coming out they didn't have a copy of 
the new wine menu as of yet. 
We wanted to go for a rosé wine which they were happy to give recommendations of. 
We were also told that two of the items on the menu were unavailable due to running out of them. This wasn't an issue for as we had a quick look at the menu
prior to our visit so knew what we were most likely going to go for. 



The Menu itself had a large selection of starter, main, side and dessert dishes. 
We were very impressed with the varied selection on offer and found it hard to choose from. 
I'm glad that we had looked at the menu online prior to going as I think we 
would have taken much longer to make our choices otherwise. 

I also had a little peek at what they had to offer for children too which was on a separate menu and was also impressed with the selection they had for little ones. 


The wine that we chose to go for was the Blossom Hill White Zinfandel which is a refreshing palate of lovely rosé with aromas of ripe strawberries and juicy watermelon. Soft and aromatic. 
I don't drink that often but when I do and go for wine, rosé is by far my preferred choice. 



Starter

Stuart chose to go for the Wasabi King Prawns which is served with a pea and mint mayo dip.
He said " They are very light with bubbly batter.
They had a perfect balance of heat with freshness." 


For my starter I picked out the Smoked Salmon. 
The smoked salmon came with malted brown bread and horseradish cheese. 
I'm not usually a fan of horseradish but i'm so glad that I chose to try the
horseradish cheese. The cheese had the lovely horseradish taste but without being too overpowering.




Main

Stuart went for the New Zealand lamb rump which came with a rich malbec sauce, mint crushed potatoes and cauliflower cheese.
He said " The lamb was cooked perfectly ( well done) as requested. 
The potatoes and cauliflower cheese were delicious with ample portions."


I also went for lamb but a lamb pie. 
The pie was served with mint mash, kale and gravy. 
The lamb was very tender and wasn't fatty (which I hate) and the pie was
very filling too so I must admit I was wondering how I could fit dessert in.  



Dessert 

We both decided to go for a sundae for dessert. Stuart chose the After Eight® which was
Vanilla ice cream mixed with After Eight® pieces, drizzled with mint syrup and chocolate flavoured sauce and topped with a whip of cream and an After Eight® mint.
Stuart said " A perfect after meal refreshment" 



I went for the Black forest sundae which was Vanilla ice cream, brownie pieces and cherries soaked in kirsch. Topped with a whip of cream and a chocolate flake, 
this was a truly delicious dessert, I've not had an ice cream sundae in 
so long I forgot how good they are. 


Our experience of the Horse and Jockey was very positive with: 

- Polite and helpful staff
 - a great selection of delicious meals
- a lovely location
- family friendly atmosphere. 


Both Stuart and I both agree that we would definitely go back there again. 
If you like the look of the wonderful food and experience we had why not book a table for Easter!


* Disclaimer I was given this meal in return for an honest review
all thoughts, photos and opinions are of our own. 


Blake's Easter Basket

This weekend will be Easter which has come around pretty quick. 
Last year I shared with you what was in Blake's 1st Easter basket
I have done one once again for him this year as I love the tradition. 

Last year Blake was 4 months old at the time and I picked out bits that I knew he 
would get use of.  He still loves the books and the ball set we had got him. 
The only things he doesn't use anymore are the inkless print set as it was a one off thing and 
the sock on's as he out grew them and are longer needed. 

So here is what is included in Blake's Easter basket this year: 




As Blake loves books it is why I chose for his basket to have mainly books. 
He loves to sit on my lap and snuggle up as I read him a book or two. 

I picked out the Dvd as I love peter rabbit when I was younger and want Blake to enjoy
Beatrix potter too. 

The cute little rabbit in a carrot is cute little gift idea which I had to include. 

I'm looking forward to giving Blake his Easter basket on Friday and then snuggling up with him reading his new books and watching some of stories from the DVD. 

We didn't include chocolate in this years basket as Blake tends to be fussy and 
sometimes he likes chocolate and will get it all over himself. Other times he's not 
keen and just chucks it on the floor so it would be a waste. 

If you have kids will you be doing a basket this year for them? 
If so I'd love to see what you have included. 


Where to get inspiration for home interiors

I love interior design, and although we’re still renting and it’s difficult to make many changes, I still make mental notes whenever I come across anything that I fall in love with. Hopefully, when we are finally in the position to buy, my rooms will be a reflection of my years of research!

For those of you who are thinking of redecorating your own place, I just thought I’d share with you a few things that inspire my creativity.

Show homes in your area
I find show homes to be fantastic hubs of interior design expertise. Specialist companies will be brought into show homes with the purpose of making each and every room look as good as possible. With this in mind, what better place to get some ideas for your own living space?

You know the ideas will work, you’ll get the very best tips on how to accessorise the space, and of course how to use lighting and colours to make the rooms seem brighter and more spacious. If you’d like to see some examples of show homes, head over to emblemfurniture.co.uk to see their latest work.

View other properties on your street
This may seem a little sneaky, but it doesn’t hurt to look at what other people in your neighbourhood are doing. On the one hand, their homes will often be a template of yours. It can give you ideas on how you can expand to create the kitchen-diner of your dreams, or the entertainment space you’ve always wanted.

On the other, it can help you to decide on colours and patterns that will suit your space because of the light certain rooms will get, or even disregard them after you’ve seen them in the flesh.




Search media
I am practically obsessed with Pinterest! I have so many boards dedicated to home interiors, as you find the most beautiful examples of how people have used colours and textures to maximize the potential of a room. Not all of them are experts either; you can find many people who use re-pinning images as a way of telling their own story behind re-decorating their home.

Of course, I always turn to magazines and their glossy images for my scrapbook. The best part is that with such a huge online following too, the best interior magazines have regular posts on their websites for top seasonal trends.


Life and cultures
Although I don’t get to travel much, I always try to take design inspirations from the different countries and cultures I experience. Not only does it bring you happy memories each day, but it’s a way of reflecting your personality and life experiences to each and every person that walks through your door. I love the romantic French style at the moment, so I’m looking to incorporate a little of this into our living space when we move. If you’d like more ideas on using your travels in your home style, click here.


I hope you found these ideas useful! Are you doing any redecorating this spring?

Easter Gift Guide

With Easter all most here I have put together a range of Easter gifts from sweet treats to
alternative gifts there is something for everyone. 

If you love eggs and not just the chocolaty kind then you need to check out 
The Crackin Egg Co who have a selection of free range hardboiled eggs.
They are perfect as a snack when you’re on the go, or just feeling peckish. Choose from Salt & Black Pepper, Sweet Chilli, or Sour Cream & Chives to give your eggs extra flavour.



If you love chocolate and coffee than Beanies have the perfect combination. 
The My Beanies Choc Mini Stash has 3 deliciously chocolaty flavors:
- Chocolate Orange
- Mint Chocolate
and
- Double Chocolate 

By the way they are also less than 2 calories per serving.



If you want to give your kids an alternative gift then this cute little rabbit in a carrot from 
Born Gifted is such  a cute gift idea. A soft bright orange plush carrot with a green felt top and a zip. Undo the zip and inside is a charming baby rabbit! 
The rabbits come in 2 colours and you never know which colour will be ‘born’ when you unzip the top of the carrot. 
 £5.99


Another great alternative gift for kids is a selection of books. 
I was sent a fab selection to enjoy with Blake. 

Hey Duggie: Follow that egg 
Join everyone's favourite dog in this adorable board book for budding young Squirrels!
In this seasonal title, Duggee and the Squirrels go on an egg hunt with a difference – making it a perfect gift for the Easter holidays!

Hello Little Egg
Welcome to Puffin Rock - home to two young and fun puffins, Oona and Baba. 
Join the pair as they embark on new and exciting adventures.
During playtime, the two puffins find an egg all its own, and endure a race against time to reunite the lost little one with his worried family!


Chicken Nugget
Sometimes the bravest hero of all . . . is just a little chicken!
featuring a laugh-out-loud funny story and adorable, relatable characters. Chicken Nugget has plenty of series potential, and enjoys a timely release just ahead of Easter!


Chimpanzees For Tea
When Vincent’s mother  gives  Vincent  a shopping  list  and  asks him  to do her  a special favour, Vincent  is  enthusiastic and excited, determined  to  get  it  right … but  after  being  interrupted  on  the  way, he  ends  up  bringing  a whole  hord unexpected guests back  home!  Of course Vincent’s mother  just  wanted to  make tea…  But  is that….  a  CHIMPANZEE?!


This is not a bedtime story

Sophie doesn't want a story time filled with cute kittens and birthday parties, she wants rocket-launching helicopters and a giant robot dinosaur! Clever, funny and heart-racingly exciting, this is a book to inspire and delight every little girl and boy.

Blake has really loved listening to me read these books and has been sat on my lap snuggled up. We definitely recommend these titles. 



Moving on to sweet treats Holland & Barrett have a fab selection of eggs

The Dairy free egg: 
A delicious Organic Fairtrade Milky chocolate Easter Egg for those seeking to avoid dairy, gluten and nuts.

The no added sugar egg: 
A wonderful dairy free milky chocolate made with no sugar added. This delicious chocolate is ideal for those who want to avoid added sugar, dairy, gluten and nuts .

£3.99


Elizabeth Shaw, has given a new lease of life into there Easter offering this year by launching a new range of luxury chocolate Eggs.
The milk orange crisp Egg has a deliciously crunchy orange flavour milk chocolate shell egg with melt in the mouth honeycomb crisp pieces. 
Wrapped in a beautifully designed gift box which includes 12 milk orange crisp chocolates and a uniquely decorative ribbon handle, making this the perfect gift for someone special in your life. 
£10 

This chocolate egg certainly felt very luxury and we enjoyed this chocolate egg. 
Even Blake who ended up taking some from the box when I wasn't looking.


Another fab brand to try out is Monty Bojangles I was sent the Choccy Scoffy egg.
Which is a delicious hollow milk chocolate truffle Easter egg on top of a collection of individual truffles. This creamy milk chocolate egg is made with Belgian milk chocolate and accompanies a selection of Choccy Scoffy cocoa dusted truffles.
This egg is to die for I really enjoyed the truffles. 
£6


Of course I couldn't miss out Cadburys when it comes to Easter Eggs and
other chocolate treats. 

This year they have such a huge range of Easter chocolate treats.
These small/medium range of Easter eggs are an ideal gift. 
 Whether they love Cadbury Dairy Milk Freddo faces, Cadbury Dairy Milk Buttons or Cadbury Mini Eggs to name a few, they won’t be disappointed as these delicious treats will help  to create special and memorable moments on Easter morning. 



Cadbury Dairy Milk Egg ‘n’ Spoon is the ideal treat to share. 
In keeping with the theme, open up the egg box to reveal four individually wrapped delicious Cadbury Dairy Milk chocolate eggs. Crack the top of the egg and use the spoon provided to scoop out and enjoy the fluffy mousse centre, yum. 


Cadbury Dairy Milk Freddo Minis frog shaped choco-licious treats will have the whole family smiling and there’s plenty to share. Ribbit!

The Cadbury Dairy Milk Bunny is filled with a delicious light and fluffy vanilla mousse that tantalises the taste buds with an abundance of flavour and texture. 



Last of all if you prefer sweets over chocoate than Swizzles have 
a fab Easter mix and Spring selection.
This is the ideal gift for Stuart as unlike me he prefers his sweets to chocolate.
There is a fab selection: 
Lollypops
Drumstick lolly
love hearts
refreshers etc. 


Will you be going the traditional chocolate egg routine this year? 
Or maybe you will be doing an alternative gift I'd love to know. 
What you are getting your little ones, your other half etc? 
comment below.