Monday, 20 November 2017

A Caribbean Christmas?

Over the past few years we have taken our annual Disney holiday during the last few months of the year and it has quickly become one of our absolute favourite things to do. Trading cold and dreary November days for the Florida sunshine or the sensational magical festivities in Paris is a no-brainer for us and it is something that I will really miss when kiddo starts school next year.


I've been thinking though, when the time comes that we are confined to taking our trips away during the school holidays that maybe one year it would be lovely to spend a Christmas somewhere different and experiencing how a different culture celebrates the most wonderful time of year. 

Sure, top of my list would be to spend Christmas at Disney. I've experienced the parks in all their festive glory but I imagine that *actual* Christmastime would be a whole new level of magical festiveness! 

The world sure is a big place though and also super high on my list of places I'd love to spend Christmas is the Caribbean. I'd love to gather up the family and spend Christmas on sandy white sands complete with sparkling turquoise waters, swapping my hot chocolate for a delicious cocktail instead! A Caribbean Christmas would be incredible and a dream that I'd love to come true one day! Barbados, the Bahamas and Jamaica are three destinations I definitely want to visit and I have been browsing the Destination2 website which has a huge selection of beautiful looking resorts available that would be just perfect to spend the festive period. Let me tell you, I have been eyeing up the Sugar Bay resort in Barbados for quite a while now and it looks right up our street. Just beautiful and so great for family too! Family suites, all inclusive food and drinks, activities for children.... perfect!


The Christmas season is apparently one of the island's most favourite times of the year so I'd love to see and experience it all one day! Also, the average temperature for December is around 29ÂșC which is something I certainly wouldn't grumble at. We never seem to get any of that much anticipated snow at Christmas here in the UK so bring on that sunshine, I say!

If you could spend Christmas abroad then where would you choose and why? I'd love to know so leave your answer in a comment below!


This is a collaborative post but as always, all words are my own.
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Thursday, 26 October 2017

The Halloween Tag

If you know me then you'll know that Halloween is undoubtedly my favourite time of the year so when I saw that the lovely Emma over at Little Owl Loves had made her own 'Halloween Tag', I just knew I had to have a go at it too! Literally, when October rolls around i'm like GIMME ALL THE SPOOKY STUFF. I honestly can't get enough of Halloween! 

It's kiddo's last day of term so whilst I have a spare half hour before the holiday shenanigans begin, I thought i'd do this!

I hope that you enjoy reading my answers and i'd love it if you took part too. If you do, send me you link so I can have a nosy at your blog. I love reading through tag posts, I always find them so interesting!


What is your favourite Halloween movie?

I'm not even sure what technically counts as a Halloween movie.... I love a good spooky film at this time of year though. Beetlejuice, The Fly, The Crow, Young Frankenstein, Something Wicked This Way ComesLittle Shop of Horrors and The Haunted Mansion are amongst my favourites! I'll let you into a little secret.... I'm really not a fan of The Nightmare Before Christmas. I feel like I *should* like it but I have just never been a fan.  

What is your first Halloween memory?

I distinctly remember a party when I was little when I dressed as a witch complete with painted face and the full costume. I've never been into trick or treating but I have always loved a good party! 

Have you always been a Halloween lover?

Oh, yes! Well, anything to do with autumn. I just love it, it truly is the most wonderful time of year for me! I was a goth growing up (well, I still am inside!) so honestly, there's no better time to exist than Halloween! We chose to get married in October, partly because we'd get to have a Halloween honeymoon and honestly it was one of the best decisions e v e r


How do you get into the Halloween spirit?

As soon as September rolls around, I am not ashamed to say that the Halloween decorations are out and on display! I don't have many because as you know, I hate clutter but I like to make a little effort! A few candles here and there, a pumpkin or two! October is usually the month we take our Disney holidays so obviously there's a lot of prepping for those so I like to make the most of every last bit of Halloween even though it's a super busy month for us! 

Favourite Halloween decoration?

My decorations are mostly from good old Poundland so I have nothing that I'm super sentimental about. I'm loving the October page on my Disney Parks calendar though this year. Phantom Manor at Disneyland Paris is my favourite so it's super to have that on display! It's a super creepy image, just look at those shadowy arms reaching around the house! 


How do you plan to spend this Halloween?

Dressing up and partying, of course! And downing as many Halloween treats as I possibly can before they disappear off the shelves for another year.

Name one usual thing you are afraid of?

Butterflies.... Which is ironic as I have a whopping huge butterfly tattoo on my thigh! But in real life they freak me out and make me feel physically sick if I see one flapping its wings! Just no.



Favourite Halloween song?

I literally have so many favourite Halloween songs so I'm going to have to narrow it down to two at best and the first of those is The Misfits "Halloween" which has been a firm favourite of mine for many a year. It might be a bit of an obvious choice but I think it would be sacrilege to not listen to this song each October!

My second favourite Halloween song is "It's Halloween-Lo-Ween" from Disneyland Paris which always gives me the warm and fuzzies whenever I hear it. When we stayed at the Disneyland Hotel for our honeymoon, it was the song they played first thing in the morning as they got the park ready each morning! I flipping adore it! 


Do you enjoy carving pumpkins?

Hell no. I love the finished result but all that carving is just a faff! I never have time to do anything with the insides either so it feels like a bit of waste!

Halloween party or movie marathon?

Both, please! Movies in the day, party at night!


Thanks for reading! x
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Tuesday, 24 October 2017

Our Walt Disney World Table Service Plans for 2017

If there's one thing that gets me excited, it's food. I love eating out and trying new things so when we booked our 2017 holiday to Walt Disney World in Florida complete there's no surprise that one of the first things I did following this was to head over to the Disney website to check out all the menus!

Once again, we added the dining plan to our package this year which enables us to have 1 table service meal, 1 quick service meal, 2 snacks, refillable resort mugs and 1 drink per meal. It's a plan that works really well for our family as it gives us the flexibility to try a bit of everything from quick service all the way up to 2 credit meals.


When it came to planning our table service dining reservations we only really had a few  'must do's' this time and those were Be Our Guest at Magic Kingdom and Boma, Sanaa and Jiko at Animal Kingdom Lodge which is the resort we are staying at. I am so happy to say we got well timed reservations for all of these which is a huge relief! 

Let me tell you, I am so excited to eat at the Animal Kingdom Lodge restaurants because I have read so many amazing reviews, drooled over the pictures and have dreamed of staying at this resort for what feels like forever! I have literally never stepped foot inside this resort as I didn't want to go unless we were actually staying there so honestly this all feels like a dream come true. For me, these three restaurants are what i'm most excited about this time!


I'm not going to bore you with a huge list of all our reservations but I just wanted to mention today some of the restaurants that I am particularly looking forwards to!  

Let's start with Yak & Yeti, a firm favourite of ours in Animal Kingdom. I love everything about this restaurant; the decor is gorgeous, the pan-Asian inspired menu is hugely varied and the cocktails are amazing. The children's choices are also superb; a mixture of standard choices and dishes for the more adventurous. We are really looking forwards to returning here!

We're also looking forwards to returning to The Crystal Palace in Magic Kingdom for breakfast again (I have been dreaming of those mini bagels for so long!). Also Jungle Skipper Canteen which was a last minute reservation for us last year but turned out to be one of our favourite meals! The food here is so good!


New restaurants for us this year include both Coral Reef and Via Napoli in Epcot. I am so excited about eating with an aquarium view and the menu at Coral Reef looks like just our kind of thing. Gourmet seafood meals? Yes please! Also, I am the biggest pizza fan and I have heard a lot about the food at Via Napoli so I am fully expecting to be in pizza heaven in just a few weeks time!


I plan on taking lots of photos of our meals this year so hopefully there'll be a few blog posts sharing my experiences at some of the restaurants over the next few months! I especially want to share my thought on choices for children as I rarely get to see this in other reviews and it's so important if you're travelling with a fusser eater (my girl would eat chicken nuggets until the end of time if I let her!). I know I never tire of reading Disney food posts so hopefully they might be of some interest for you guys too!

Thank for reading! 
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Wednesday, 18 October 2017

The Bedtime Tag

Recently I was very kindly tagged by Kirsty over at The Money Saving Mum to take part in "The Bedtime Tag" and I thought that it would be a fun blog post to write, especially as inspiration has been lacking around here recently! Kirsty's blog is one of my favourites and at home we adore watching her vlogs which are a real fun bundle of Florida, Disney and family life. She is absolutely lovely and so are her family! So make sure you pop over to her blog and YouTube channel to say hello and tell her I sent you!


OK, here we go....

1. Describe your usual bedtime routine

I'd love to share a good routine here but in all honesty my evenings are usually a blur of work and catching up with 'to do' lists that I haven't been able to do during the day. This usually means that I get to bed wayyyy too late! We are spot on with kiddo's bedtime routine so implementing one for myself is something that I would really benefit from. I must work on that! The things that I always do each night though are catch up with my husband, remove all my makeup, clean my teeth, comfy pyjamas on and then I'm good to go! This will be the same every night, even if we've been out and had a late one! Always remove that makeup, no matter what!  

2. What are your favourite pyjamas?

I love comfortable pyjamas so it's usually something from Fat Face. I love that their nightwear is mix and match so everything goes with everything with no fuss. I am a big fan of their jersey leggings and lightweight tops and they don't look so bad for wearing around the house either!

3. What is your current bedtime reading?

I don't read at bedtime, I'm a dive into bed and turn off the light kinda person!

4. What would I find on your bedside table?

A lamp and a small potted Madagascar Dragon Tree. Literally nothing else, I hate clutter especially in the bedroom! God I sound so boring, don't I?!

5. What scent makes you sleepy?

This is a weird one but I'm going to say the smell of L'Occitane shea butter hand cream. Applying hand cream is often the last thing I do before bed and the scent is absolutely delicious so I have now come to associate it with feeling sleepy. I also love a good lavender pillow spray if I'm having trouble sleeping as we all know it is so, so good for anxiety and sleep problems, two of my best friends haha!

6. What is your usual bedtime and wake-up time?

We usually fall asleep anywhere between 11pm to midnight and wake between 6-7:30am, though wake-up time is usually dictated by kiddo. I'm a night owl and can't get to sleep early no matter what so the longer we get to sleep in, the better!

7. What are your top three bedtime products?

L'Occitane shea butter hand cream, the scent is so soothing! I also love the Rosehip and Vitamin E face oil from B Skincare, applying it is so relaxing and the scent is beyond incredible. Finally, you can't beat using micellar water to feel super cleansed and refreshed. I use it to remove any last stubborn traces of makeup before bed. So good!

8. What is your most common sleeping position?

I sleep on my side though I'm one of those annoying people that has to sleep with a pillow under one leg otherwise I roll onto my front and wake up, haha!

9. Do you have anything you like to take to bed with you?

My husband & my dog, haha! Yep, we let the dog sleep in our bed!

10. What is your worst bedtime habit?

I know this will probably apply to most people but honestly, taking my phone to bed. I use my phone to set our alarms for the morning but I am so guilty of mindless app scrolling just before sleep. Instagram, facebook, emails, twitter.... you name it, I'm on it just before bed! I should probably buy an actual alarm clock so I don't even need to bring my phone into the bedroom at night but I hate bedside clutter!


Thank you for reading my Bedtime Tag! I'm going to tag another three of my favourite bloggers who i'd love to see take part so here are my nominations:

Steph at Possum Peach

Emma at Little Owl Loves

Stephanie at Nourish ME

I'd love to see any of you take part though so if you'd like to have a go at this tag then leave your post in the comments below and I'll be sure to pop over to read them!
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Thursday, 28 September 2017

My 2017 Walt Disney World Trip Bucket List


I feel like I've taken a completely unintentional break from blogging over the past few weeks. I have been so busy with eBay sales, admin, decorating, building a bed for kiddo and well, erm.... booking another Walt Disney World holiday. Oops. More on that one in another blog post! Time is absolutely flying by though and at just over a month to go, i'm also busy making plans for our upcoming trip to the most magical place on earth.


My husband and I are keen on making our Disney holidays as different from each other as we can and this year is no exception! I thought that today I would share 10 things that I really want to do on our next trip. These are just some of the things I want to do, of course! If there's anything you think I might have missed though then do let me know your suggestions. Here we go....

Happily Ever After

By far one of the things I am most looking forwards to this trip! I have been obsessing over this show ever since I saw the live stream on it's opening night. I've watched it with kiddo countless times, listened to the song over and over and over and I just know I'm going to be completely overwhelmed when I see it in real life! It looks absolutely spectacular.

Na'vi River & Flight of Passage

In fact, I am looking forwards to everything about Pandora, the world of Avatar! It wasn't open on our last visit but it all looks just magical. I imagine there are going to be some great photo opportunities here and I am dying to visit Satu'li Canteen to try out some of their delicious looking food! My husband is quite keen to visit here at night so we're aiming to visit a few times both day and night to get the full experience.

Explore with Uber

This year we are braving a trip with no car hire and we are planning on making the most of the brilliant complimentary Disney transport to get around Walt Disney World. That said though, we also have a few trips out of the Disney bubble planned (one of them will be straight to Bath & Body Works, not gonna lie!) so Uber looks like it's going to be our best option. As kiddo will be 4, we're interested to see how things work with car seats and safety, etc. Uber is something we've not used before, even at home (apart from Uber Eats but that's obviously very different!) so I'll let you know about how we get on if that is something you'd like to see in a blog post here!

Eat at all of the restaurants in Animal Kingdom Lodge

Getting to stay at this resort is literally a dream come true for me. It has been at the top of my list of Disney resorts I want to stay at for many years and so I want to soak up every last moment and try everything, including all the food! We have reservations for Boma, Jiko and Sanaa and I am looking forwards to eating at The Mara, trying the pool bars and lounges. I feel like I have been looking at menus since the day we booked this holiday so the food at this resort is something that I am really looking forwards to!

Seven Dwarfs Mine Train

Our little girl has a real love for roller coasters and this year she has finally passed the magic marker of 105 cm meaning that she can now ride way more attractions than she could last year. It's one of the first FastPass bookings we made because I just know she is going to love it!

Hidden Pascals

Another Magic Kingdom one! The Tangled area in Fantasyland is one of my favourite parts of the park and this year I want to try and spot the 10 hidden Pascals that are dotted around the area. As you know, Pascal is very good at blending in with his surroundings but apparently you might spot him on lamp posts, under bushes and on buildings. This is such a cute idea and one that kiddo is really going to have fun with!

Buy an Alex & Ani bracelet

.... And probably start a whole new collection! I love collecting little Disney bits, especially if I know I'm going to get actual use out of them. It's jewellery, clothing and mugs all the way for me.... I'm definitely not into ornaments or stuff that is just going to sit there on a shelf! I have been eyeing up these bracelets for quite some time now, I just love how pretty there are! This year I am definitely going to treat myself to one or two and then maybe buy one on each Disney trip in the future. We'll see!

Eat at Casey's Corner

This one is a non-negotiable 'must do' for us for every Disney trip, whether it's Disneyland Paris or Walt Disney World in Orlando. It's always the first meal we have in the parks and I love that this is our little tradition. I love sitting on the end of Main Street tucking into delicious food whilst people watching, adjusting to Disney life and taking in the magical atmosphere. I am absolutely counting down the days until we are doing this once again.

Eat around the world at Epcot

One of our biggest regrets from our last trip is that we didn't spend enough time in Epcot. This year we have booked more dining and FastPass reservations here so hopefully we'll be able to also make the most of the International Food & Wine Festival at the same time, too! We want to visit as many of the kiosks as we can, using up those snack credits on our dining plan and experiencing as much of it all as possible. If you have been recently and can recommend any of the kiosks then do let me know. As you know, we are a family who love our food!

Pin trading

Last but not least, this year I want to get kiddo started with pin trading in the parks. This is something she has taken an immense interest in on our last two trips but always not until it is almost time to go home. So this year our plan is to begin with one of the starter sets and get her going from there. I know it would be cheaper to buy pins to get her started before we go but it'll be more fun for her if she gets total control and gets to pick out her own lanyard and pins. It's something she's really going to love, interacting with cast members and guests whilst having fun on her holiday! 
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Wednesday, 27 September 2017

Make your bedroom the most comfortable place on earth!

There’s nothing quite like coming home after a hard day’s work, turning the key in the door and heading straight upstairs for some relaxing time in the bedroom. Unfortunately, many of us have bedrooms which aren’t exactly conducive to kicking off one’s shoes and taking a much-deserved nap; they’re cluttered, uncomfortable and uninspiring to say the least. If that describes the current state of your bedroom then you deserve better! If you feel like it is time to change things to create a more relaxing space then here are a few tips!


Freshen Things Up

Sometimes, all it takes is a lick of paint to transform a room from cold, clinical and a bit boring to inviting, comfortable and attractive. In the bedroom, you should aim for soothing colours like pale blues, greens, soft greys, and lavenders, which will help your mind and body to calm down and relax after a stressful day.

Change Your Mattress

On average, we spend at least one-third of our lives in bed, so it’s only sensible to make the experience as comfortable as possible. That might mean paying a little more for one of these Easca mattresses, which offer a superior level of support, but it will be worth it. A good mattress will make falling to sleep quickly easier and getting up free of aches and pains almost guaranteed.

Simplify

Have you noticed that when you’re in a room that’s cluttered; which has lots of busy wall art and which is basically just full of things, your mind swirls, and you just can’t seem to relax? That’s because too much stuff is pretty distracting and it can stop you from doing the very thing you need to do in the bedroom - switching off. So, if you truly want your bedroom to be the most comfortable place on the planet, consider having a clean out, hiding any clutter that remains and choosing just one or two relaxing pieces of art (if any) for the walls.

Egyptian Cotton All the Way

Egyptian cotton sheets are a game-changer in the bedroom. They are less scratchy than man-made sheets, and because cotton is a natural material, they are more breathable, which helps to keep you cool when the weather is warmer. 

A Down Duvet

When you wrap yourself up in a down duvet, it’s like getting a hug from your favourite person. It’s warm, comfortable and extremely relaxing. If you want to experience the ultimate in comfort, you simply must invest in a down comforter! Some down pillows wouldn’t go amiss either.

A Slice of Life

You probably have a few plants in the kitchen and living room, but what about the bedroom? If you don’t already have a couple of plants in the bedroom, you should definitely consider changing that because, not only has it been proven that the presence of plants has a calming effect, but plants can help to improve your air quality for a better night’s sleep, too!

All that remains is to kick off your shoes, climb into your PJ's and enjoy some quality time in your bedroom!
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Tuesday, 26 September 2017

Tips For Keeping Your Bathroom Smelling Fresh

Bathroom odours can be dreadful. Once they invade your home, it can be both embarrassing and stressful to try and manage it. Your first instinct might be to use temporary measures to cover them up. For example, you might use air fresheners to mask the smell or you might burn scented candles to try and get rid of the odours. Sadly, these options rarely work because they’re not targeting the root of the odour. If you’re serious about keeping your bathroom smelling fresh then here are some tips that might help!


Ventilation is key

If you want to keep your bathroom smelling fresh then ventilation is the key. If you have windows in your bathroom, open them up so it allows the air to carry any odours away from your bathroom. Turn on the overhead fan if you have one as well. Remember to ventilate your bathroom at all times. For instance, if you take a hot shower, then the steam has to escape or else it can create mildew or mould buildup which could result in a smelly bathroom.

Declutter your bathroom

If you have a lot of stuff in your bathroom, then the cause of the smell could be hidden in a cupboard or among the many products that you’ve been keeping for years. Declutter your bathroom with the help of shelves, throwing out old products and invest in other storage solutions such as these vanity units from Drench. You never know what could be causing the smell so do your best to clean up the bathroom and eliminate anything that you don’t need.

Clean bathroom fabrics

Shower curtains, towels and clothes can quickly get musty when they’re in a bathroom. Clean them at least once a week to prevent the buildup of those smells. If you want to reduce the amount of cleaning involved, then try to remove fabrics from your bathroom. For instance, you can replace shower curtains with shower screens instead. However, keep in mind that these will also need cleaning too!

Eliminate odours, don’t just cover them

Make sure you’re actually eliminating odours and not just covering them. Most air fresheners only cover the smells with something stronger, and this can often result in powerful smells that will make your nose tingle. These are often worse than the odours too because they can be so overwhelming that it will take a long time for the smells to disappear from the bathroom without sufficient ventilation. Look for odour eliminators, not just covers.

Take out the rubbish

People often forget that they have a bin in the bathroom. Although it might not seem that bad, odours can slowly build up in the rubbish bin and, depending on what you throw in there, the smells can easily be prevented by taking it out more regularly. It’s a small thing, but effective at combating bad odours.
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