Patchology Best Food Forward – Review

It is Sunday and I’ve decided to start reviewing some pampering treats for Self-Care Sunday. Today I tried out Patchology Best Foot Forward, softening foot & heel mask. I wanted to have a bit of a pampering session while reading a book – the perfect Sunday evening in my opinion!

Patchology Best Foot Forward is easy to use, it’s literally a case of unwrapping the booties and putting your feet in them. So perfect if you’re busy, or don’t want any mess. The idea is to leave them on for 10minutes or more if you wish. I kept them for about 20minutes as I was reading.

So, the big negative is they are plastic and single use. This is not a good thing. They come in a cardboard outer, but they’re packaged in a plastic packet and are made from plastic.

Does Patchology Best Foot Forward work?

I didn’t feel the warning sensation I was thinking I might, in fact my feet felt quite cold. Before I took my feet out of the booties I massaged them through the booties – to try to ensure I get all the cream onto my feet!

When I took the boots off I could instantly see my feet look moisturised. My very dry heels looked like they had been pampered a little! And my feet definitely feel softer. It isn’t a replacement for a pedicure or using a foot file on very hard skin, but it is certainly a good way to treat your feet.

The Patchology Best Foot Forward Softening & Heel mask costs around £10.

2020 My New Year Plans…

I have a love hate relationship with New Year. I love the idea of a fresh start, but the reality is sometimes I feel as though I’ve not achieved as much as I wanted to have done the previous year.

So, I’m finding a balance this year. I shall reward my efforts. Celebrate the small achievements along the way to a bigger goal. So, what are my plans?

Fitness

I really want to start doing park run with my bigger boys. They love running so I feel that would be a great way for us to get out doing something together. I have lots more thoughts for my 2020 fitness plans, but I’ll keep that for a separate post.

Financial

With two residential trips on the horizon, I want the children to be able to enjoy their trips and I don’t want to be worrying about money. So I’m going to try to plan our finances a little better this year.

Green living – grow our own

Our green living continues! I let our vegetable growing efforts slip last year, so 2020 will see an increase in vegetable and fruit growing! Our garden needs a lot of tlc, so I’ll share our antics as we try to make it look beautiful again.

Reading

The more I read the more the children read! I have two keen readers and a competent but reluctant reader. So 2020 is about challenging my children and I to read more!

Travel

I am planning a summer holiday, we may not get on our holiday…but I am planning it! I need some time at the beach no matter which country!

I think that’s it? I’ll write a bit more on each in separate posts, as yes, I intend to start writing more this year!

Baa Baa Bubbles Game Review.

Baa Baa Bubbles Game review – game received for purposes of review.

If you’re looking for a family game to enjoy this Christmas look no further than Baa Baa Bubbles from Spinmaster Toys.

This simple to play game will have everyone laughing as you try to avoid being the player who makes the sheep sneeze and lose her wool!

Setting up the game was simple, we did find we need to add quite a coating of bubble mixture when we first set up the game. I’m not sure whether we covered the sheep enough or whether the bubble dabber wasn’t flowing as well as it could be – or perhaps both?

The aim of the game is to end up with the highest number of points. You get the points by successfully ‘feeding’ the sheep the number of times stated on the meadow cards. If the sheep sneezes on your turn to feed her, then you get no points! Here’s a short video of what happens when she sneezes and loses her wool (aka bubbles!).

At the end of play it’s simple to pack away, just remember to rinse of the bubble residue.

We absolutely love the game, it is perfect if you have younger members of the family. It is easy to understand, encourages counting and taking turns, but is also great fun!

Electronic Cigar: How They Work

Collaborative Guest Post

Just like e-cigarettes, e-cigars use the same mechanism of heating an aerosol liquid into a vapor which is inhaled by the user. Cigars in general, have normally been associated with privileged members of society due to their class and cost. Many cigar users are normally perceived as people who is are individuals of good means and enjoy certain high standards of living.e-cigars, unlike the normal cigars, are battery powered and instead of producing smoke from the tobacco component being vaped, it produces a vapor from the liquefied aerosol. This is normally flavored with different tastes in the form of a mist which is inhaled by the user. The idea, normally, is to give the same sensation as conventional smoking of a cigar gives, minus the smoke and the tobacco smell.

Working Mechanism

Normal cigars contain a roll of processed tobacco, wrapped in a flammable “skin”that aids the burning and channels the smoke to the mouth of the user who inhales the smoke. However, E-cigars have components that include the aerosol liquefied tobacco, a mouthpiece, battery and a coil with a heating circuit. Once powered by the battery, the coil heats the liquid aerosol that is turned into mist or vapors that the user inhales through the mouthpiece giving a feeling of smoking. Nowadays,the e-cigar liquid substance is flavored with various tastes and smells click for more info, that makes it more appealing and non-irritating to other users who do not like smoke. This has been said to reduce addiction to smoking conventional cigars. However, this is debatable due to the many numbers of users who have turned into multiple addicts of all forms of smoking.

Regulations On E-Cigars

The smokeless, smell-free nature of the e-cigars has made them popular amongst the youth whoa tendency to misuse them. However, the regulatory bodies in many jurisdictions control the production, distribution, sale, and consumption of e-cigars. Any manufacturer of electronic smoking products must adhere to strict rules and codes of conduct to be able to sell their products, especially where minors and women are involved. This is due to the health risks associated with E-cigar smoking.

Health Implications

E-smoking, and especially e-cigarettes, have been associated with lung diseases among their users, including irritation of the lungs. The substance nicotine, that is the base product in tobacco,is highly addictive. Studies have shown that e-cigar smoking can lead to addiction to other forms of smoking, including marijuana which is commonly referred to as dual usage. Amongst the youth, it is associated with slow brain development, memory problems and in most cases, irritation of the lungs and breathing system.

Note

It is, however, important to note that some people have associated e-smoking with a reduction of addiction to direct tobacco smoking from normal cigarettes. It is also milder and more relaxing to smoke e-cigars due to no smoke being produced and the absence of odor as opposed to smoke from normal cigars.

Conclusion.

Despite research showing the effects of nicotine use on long-term users, the use of e-cigars has made it tolerable for most people to enjoy a serene smoking experience, even amongst other non-smoking individuals who are irritated by smoke and its smell.

4 Situations Where You’ll Need the Assistance of a Family Lawyer

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In Maryland, family law encompasses a wide assortment of cases that could emerge at any time and involve families. The laws also protect victims of domestic violence and provide protection orders to prevent further contact with the victims. Families and couples who aren’t sure what laws apply to their cases review the 4 situations where you’ll need the assistance of a family lawyer.

  1. Filing for a Divorce
    Couples who are ready to end their marriage review divorce laws with an attorney. In Maryland, fault-based and no-fault divorce grounds are available. Among the grounds are adultery, desertion, cruelty or harsh treatment, criminal conviction, and insanity. Petitioners must prove evidence to substantiate all fault-based allegations when filing for a divorce.
    In a divorce case, the couple must reach an agreement for the division of marital property, child custody, child support, and spousal support. Couples who cannot reach an agreement participate in mediation practices and negotiate for a fair and reasonable settlement. If mediation isn’t successful, a divorce trial is scheduled. In a divorce trial, a judge makes all decisions for the couple. In some cases, a divorce trial can take up to two years.
  2. Seeking a Change in Child Custody
    Child custody modifications are possible if both parties are willing to make adjustments to their parenting time. However, uncooperative parents might attend a new child custody hearing to settle the matter. Typically, modifications are requested when a noncustodial parent has more time to spend with the child and wants to increase their parenting time. The requests are also made when the noncustodial parent wants to become the custodial parent. It isn’t impossible to get a modification, but the court must see a just cause for the change. For parents who need additional details, shellyingramlaw.com has information about filing a petition for a child custody modification.
  3. Establishing a Guardianship for a Minor or Incapacitated Adult
    Guardianships give the new guardian full control over the individual in question. The guardian controls the minor or incapacitated adult’s financial assets and makes decisions about their health care. In cases involving minors, a guardianship is provided when the minor is unable to take care of themselves and needs financial support. The assignments are available if the minor is at risk and lives with a biological parent, too. Under the circumstances, the petitioner must follow the proper channels for reporting abuse or neglect of the child.
    Guardianships for an incapacitated adult are awarded to a family member when the individual is no longer of sound mind and needs protection. Under the circumstances, family members or a caregiver could seek a guardianship.
  4. Setting Up a Prenuptial Agreement
    Couples start a prenuptial agreement to protect assets before they marry. The agreements define the repercussions of specific actions, such as adultery and explain what each party receives in a divorce. Individuals with considerable wealth choose to start the agreements to lower the chances of a serious financial loss. The terms of the agreements are enforced if the couple files for a divorce.
    In Maryland, family attorneys handle divorce cases and help petitioners create a divorce agreement. The agreements include the division of marital property, child custody arrangements, child support, and alimony. Child custody modifications and new guardianships are available if a child is at risk. Guardianships for incapacitated adults are used to protect disabled and elderly individuals from unethical caregivers. A prenuptial agreement provides protection for assets before a couple marries. Families turn to a family law attorney when taking legal action under applicable laws.

Everyday Habits That Could Boost Your Sex Life

Collaborative Guest Post

When the term libido-boosting is mentioned, it is usually associated with a cheeky supplement. Nonetheless, there are still numerous natural, healthy daily habits that you can concentrate on to maintain your sex drive at its peak. Similar to how dull, stressful times at work or unhealthy meals can disrupt your sexual desire, other actions have the potential to do the same.

If you want to keep a healthy relationship, improve your mental wellness, boost immunity, and maintain a healthy body weight, then you must work on improving your sexual life. To be honest, the main reason to improve in this area is to make sex is even more fun and enticing. However, we will consider all of the other reasons. Try combining these libido-enhancing traits into your daily routine for a better sex life.

1.      Eat Libido-Boosting Meals

Consuming meals that place your body in the mood with texture or delightful taste is a brilliant idea if that works for you. However, we are talking about meals that are considered as sexual stimulants. Such meals trigger the release of hormones that are linked with sexual pleasure and performance like pine nuts, dark chocolate, asparagus, walnuts, watermelons, etc.

2.      Maintain a Healthy Sleeping Pattern

Sleep and sex go hand in hand. Good sex offers good sleep and vice-versa. Make sure that you get adequate sleep each night. Your body benefits a lot when you provide it with sufficient amounts of rest. This way, it can regain the energy lost during a busy day. A good night’s rest can lead to a boost in libido and orgasmic sex. 

3.      Maintain a Consistent Workout Routine

Training will improve your lifespan, aesthetic, and even sexual performance and endurance. Since exercises boost your blood flow to enhance your aesthetics and health, researchers claim that training conditions your body for sex. Casual encounters with individuals who focus on regularly training their body can turn out to be more satisfying than with those who do not keep fit. The act of sex also slightly resembles that of working out through the repetition of various movements for an extended duration. 

4.      Build a Meditation Habit

A study by Lori A. Brotto establishes that mindful meditation is fit for females’ sexual wellness. The study involved 451 females aged 19-70 years. The women were surveyed about their meditation experience and sex lives.

From the study, women who followed meditation (193) had better sexual performance than the ones who never meditated (257). Conclusions from the study show that meditation reduces stress, enhances concentration, boosts self-awareness, decreases anxiety, and helps depression while promoting happiness and relaxation.

5.      Be Kinder

Being kind is linked to better sex. Take note that being kind doesn’t mean being “too pleasing.” This means putting people’s needs before yours. However, if you aim at pleasing individuals, then your self-worth relies on approval from others, and that’s not healthy.

Whether it’s a mere smile or a small act of kindness, it all goes a long way in helping people genuinely connect. It also improves your self-esteem and makes your sexual partner more comfortable around you. Kindness has more impact than just on your sex life.

Elf for Christmas – a review

Items received for purpose of review.

We received an Elf For Christmas, sent from the North Pole the elf will report good behaviour to Santa. He arrived on the 1st December and I understand he will leave on Christmas Eve night. He arrived with a tag around his neck explaining it all!

Our elf.

Having an Elf is a modern tradition. We’ve had an elf for a few years, but this year our new Elf has been a real hit! Having an elf makes the run up to Christmas lots of fun. We have found that our Elf, like many others, likes to get up to mischief! But, I think it’s important to remember that an Elf may have days when he just watches, and doesn’t “do” very much at all.

But, our Elf is also very kind, and most importantly fun! Today he has spent the day driving around the house in a decorative Christmas train – along with a drawing one of the children did of him!

Can the Elf for Christmas help with good behaviour?

The Elf is able to give a warning card if he thinks behaviour could be better, and also congratulate children if their behaviour is good. I really like this, as it does encourage some good behaviour at a time when sometimes we can all be a bit naughty! He even brings a special chart and stickers to help encourage good behaviour or kindness.

Elf for Christmas – Real Magic Tag

An Elf For Christmas comes complete with;

  • An Arrival Letter from Santa – explaining why the Elf is visiting.
  • Mini Elf Report Cards 
  • 2 x Letter to Santa Templates
  • 2 x Official Nice List Certificates 
  • Christmas Reward Chart & a Sheet of Elf Stickers 
  • Beware of the Elf Sign & Santa Please Stop Here Sign
  • Departure Letter 
  • A Thank You Postcard

We were so lucky, as our Elf also came with a Magical Christmas Elf Light up Door! It’s quite a substantial door, and I was rather impressed with it – I think the Elf will use it for many years to come!

He also arrived with a beautiful story book, Elf’s First Adventure Christmas which we love as it is helping us remember to be kind!

If you haven’t got an Elf yet, it’s not too late! An Elf can arrive anytime on the run up to Christmas, it really is great fun – I think we enjoy the Elf staying as much as the children do!

Festive Snacking – Fairfields Farm Crisps Review

Disclaimer: Samples sent for Review

It’s that time of year when my thoughts turn to Christmas parties, and festive get togethers. Whether you’re hosting a party or going to one, there are so many things to consider. Do I eat before? Should I drive or book a taxi and have a drink? Will there be snacks?! Do I take snacks?!

So, I’m not sure about what the etiquette actually is on festive snacks, but I’ve discovered that most people do like a nibble. Whether they’re drinking or driving, if there are some snacks on the table they get eaten quite quickly!

What snacks are good for festive parties?

I guess this depends on whether you’re eating as part of the party. But assuming you’re just having friends round for a few festive drinks around your Christmas tree – then keep the snacks simple.

Hosting or going elsewhere, choose snacks which can be eaten with one hand – so avoid fussy dishes. Nachos are a no, as while tasty – they will inevitably end up all over the carpet. Keep things simple, and check for dietary requirements – especially any allergies.

I always leave multiple dishes of crisps on the tables. They’re ideal for those who have eaten but still want a social snack, or for people like me who just can’t resist a bowl of crisps! We were recently sent a selection of Ten Acre and Fairfields Farm Crisps. Ten Acre’s entire range of snacks are Gluten Free, Dairy Free, MSG Free Plus great tasting; as well as being Vegan or Vegetarian. Fairfields farm grow the potatoes, and make the crisps in the UK. They also use renewable energy to make their crisps, making them a good choice if you’re trying to minimise your carbon footprint.

They have a great variety of flavours, all of which I know would be popular with guests!

Would I take crisps with me to a party? Yes, along with a bottle or two – why not! Tis’ the season to be jolly after all!

What’s your flavour?

The crisps have a proper crunch to them, they’re a luxury crisp cut thicker than the cheaper brands. I was really impressed with the cheese and onion crisps, I normally don’t like cheese and onion, but the balance between cheese and onion here was perfect! I have to say I really enjoyed the Fairfields farm Sea Salt and Pepper, and they are definitely going on the festive party shopping list!

Festive Flavours?

So, Fairfields have a Kelly Bronze Turkey and stuffing flavour, available in a 40g bag and a sharing bag too. They are quite possibly the best festive flavour crisps I’ve eaten! You can really taste turkey and stuffing! However, having gone on to their site to buy some more, I notice they’re sold out! So, I will need to savour the flavour! I love that you can shop directly. I think they’re crisps are quite good value – £20 will buy 12 150g bags and postage is a reasonable £4.

We have really enjoyed the selection we were sent and will definitely be stocking up for New Year’s Eve!

Keeping Children Active

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When children are young, they are always on the go. I know that I’m constantly chasing my youngest around as he runs and climbs! But, as children get older, the call of computers or games consoles can make them more reluctant to keep active.

Get outdoors!

The first thing I will say is my children love a trip to the park. It might sound obvious but a trip to the swings is a highlight to our week. (Well, for the younger children and I anyway!) It may be the anticipation of seeing their friends, or the play equipment either way they’re getting moving!

We love a family walk, although this tends to be a weekend activity. But it is a great way to burn off some energy. I usually try to remember a flask of hot chocolate and biscuits for the end of the walk to sweeten the deal!

If you have a reluctant walker (there is always one reluctant walker in our house!) consider buying a scooter or skates. Scooting is a great way to keep everyone in the family active – scooters aren’t just for kids! I have a grown-up scooter on my wish list this year. Scooters are ideal for us, as they’re compact to store and transport.

Keep Dancing!

A friend of mine used to do what she referred to as the bin bag dance with her children every week. It was where she would put on the music and for 10 minutes everyone would have to tidy or clean. The music kept everyone moving and they all knew after roughly 2 songs they would be done. I use this tactic with my own children to encourage them to tidy their rooms – although I have to be honest it doesn’t always work!

We all enjoy dance games on the games console, which while it is using the console is atleast keeping us all moving!

We have looked into street dance classes, but none local to us work with our timetable. But I am hoping that will alter next year!

Learn a sport.

Learning to play sport is the easiest way to keep active. There are great local schemes to get children into sports, which don’t cost a fortune. My children are involved with a few sports including football and athletics. Both of them have tennis lessons which are cheaper than I had expected. It’s also really sociable for them.

In the summer we swam almost daily at our local pool. They also did summer swim lessons as they were really good value. Learning to swim I think is really important, and swimming is a great fun way to keep active. It’s worth looking at local swimming pool offers on regular swims.

My eldest son is also learning to play badminton. He is enjoying playing badminton as he says it is fast paced! Badminton equipment is all new to me though, so I’m having to research what he needs!

Keeping active is well known to be important for physical and mental health. I also think it’s a great way to spend time together as a family and make new friends too.

Mr Kipling Cake Stand Review

We were excited to receive the Casdon Mr Kipling Cake Stand to review! My daughter – age 5 – is still very into imaginative play, and will often lay out a tea party or picnic for us all to enjoy. So this set was greeted with much enthusiasm! The set is suitable for age 3+.

Casdon Mr Kipling Cake Stand

It’s easy to put together, then attach the Mr Kipling stickers – although it does need a grown-up to click the stand together firmly. It comes with 10 replica Mr Kipling cakes! The cakes are really realistic, and my children thought it was great fun being able to identify the Mr Kipling cakes!

This is not just a imaginative play toy, but also a clever shape sorter! (I love toys which have multiple ways to play!) On the bottom of each cake is a shape which corresponds with a shape on the stand. This makes a great game, and as some shapes repeat it allows the stand to be arranged in a couple of different ways too. The shape sorter makes it ideal for pre-schoolers to play with.

It is perfect for imaginative play, as it provides the most fabulous afternoon tea for the toys! It’s also decorative so when it’s been left on the coffee table it actually looks quite sweet! (Literally!).

The set is light, so it is easy to carry around and perfect for little hands to manage to serve cakes from the cake stand.

The Mr Kipling Cake Stand is great fun, easy to wipe clean – (when play gets over enthusiastic and an angel slice gets dunked in your actual cup of tea…) But most important, it has been enjoyed by all of our family.