The Different Geeks and What to Buy Them: A Gift Guide for Nerdy Guys

One of my best friends is dating a lovely new guy and with Christmas coming up, she wants to get him something that shows she cares. Her challenge is that he is nerdier than her previous boyfriends and she hasn’t … Continue reading

Embracing the Wonderful Disorder of the Festive Season!

Photo by Beth Teutschmann on Unsplash Halloween is almost upon us and as ever I had thought that by the end of October our house would be finished and ready for a lovely relaxing festive season. This of course has not happened, but … Continue reading

Keep Little Ones Healthy With These Medicine Tips

Little tots get anywhere and everywhere, making them super susceptible to getting ill. Having young nieces and nephews has shown me just how easily children can feel under the weather. Although it is inevitable, parents do their best to try and avoid it. Whether it be wrapping your kids up warm or getting them to wash their hands. However, sometimes you just can’t beat the lurgy, and this is where medicine can come to the rescue. As much of a Godsend medicines are though, mistake happen frequently, like accidentally storing medicines improperly for example. Could you be making any of these medicine mistakes?

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Not Finishing A Course

Doctors determine the type and dosage of medicine and the exact length of medicine prescriptions depending on the individual. When a full course of medication is not administered, this increases the chances of the illness reoccurring and the medicine being ineffective.

Overdosing And Underdosing

To think you could be over-dosing and under-dosing your child without even knowing it is truly terrifying. Everyone knows that it is important to give the correct amount medicine and you can do this by reading the information leaflet provided or by asking your doctor. However, even when you follow the instructions there are still things to keep in mind. In terms of measuring at home, use a measuring cup on a flat surface to reduce the chance of unintentionally pouring too much or too little. Crushing tablets is also often seen as an easy way to get stubborn children to ingest tablets without a struggle, however this changes the formation of a tablet and can lead to further issues. To avoid this, ask your doctor if there is a liquid medicine version that will help you administer the correct dosage without difficulty.

Sharing Medicine

Medicines like Calpol are regularly used to treat minor colds across most children. Even though this is openly available to any parent and not extremely harmful, it is not recommended to share bottles and syringes. Of more concern, is sharing prescribed medicines like antibiotics. When a health professional decided to give a child medication to treat their ailment, the dosage recommendation would be based on their patient’s individual profile including their age and weight, therefore the prescribed medicine will not be appropriate for another child. Sharing medication can lead to the administration of an incorrect dose or active ingredient causing further complications.

Inappropriate Storage

Often medicines are required to be stored in a cool dry place or even refrigerating. Many like storing medicines in a bathroom cupboard however, where the heat and moisture from taking a shower can change the environment rapidly. Read the information leaflet carefully and assess which area of your house is most suitable. Most importantly, medicine needs to be up high, locked and away from children.  Storing on top of counters is not recommended as children have the ability to get everywhere, something which I see often with my nieces and nephews!

Reusing Medicine

If your child has a cough a few months on from a previous one, it may appear to be the same strand of virus. This is why some parents would think to use the rest of a bottle of medicine previously administered for another cold. Treating medication in this manner is a sure fire way to end up giving your child the wrong medicine for their needs. Not only that, medicines have sell by dates which need to be taken into consideration. Make sure to review your stores regularly and throw out old medicine safely.

When your little one is poorly (which can happen regularly given all their exploring) all you want to do is make them feel better and fast! Children’s medicines are great for getting them back up and out playing, but even when you follow the guidelines it can still be easy to make mistakes. If you read and remember these tips, you should be all set to give your tots what they need and in the perfect dose and condition!

Help! I Need a Baby…Gift!

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I am beginning to realise that I have entered a stage in my life where half of my friends are settling down to have kids and the other half are out chasing their careers, travelling or still partying. Even though I am pretty much done with partying, it’s not quite the right time for me to have a baby yet. Although, it hasn’t stopped me getting super excited for my friends who are!

And, where there are babies, there are baby showers.

However, with the baby showers comes the dilemma of getting a gift. The level of effort/money put into finding the perfect gift is going to be determined by how close you are, or maybe what the bank balance says at the time. Both issues come with their own stresses, so I have put together my top tips for getting a fail-safe new baby gift.

Get Them Stocked

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Yes, it is that boring. Or at least seems like it.

For many the thought of getting nappies, bibs or dummies are an effortless gift, they believe that it is easy to purchase and can be bought at any time. They may even rather to get clothes, hats or get really creative for their new bundle of joy.

But from being around and babysitting for my good friends, I learned quickly that babies grow super fast and get through A LOT of nappies.

While hats might be really cute and thoughtful at the time, after six other friends have the same idea, there are only so many hats that can be worn before they grow out them. With supplies, if six friends have the same idea, Mummy is going to save a lot of money and be prepared for a growing babies basic needs for the first four to six months. This is a game changer for them.

Personalise It

Source: Pexels

The other problem with getting clothes or a cuddly toy, is it all becomes a little too generic. There is no doubt that there are many awesome kids clothes out there at the moment, but they do not quite get across the thought behind the gift….unless you are throwing obscene money at the situation.

No, the answer is to get thoughtful with personalised baby gifts for the new addition.

They are something a little different and really show that you have put effort into your chosen present, even if it does not break the bank. You can get a piece of art with the family’s name on it to capture to moment, or if the baby’s name has been decided you could get cuddly toy or bib embroidered as this makes the coming addition even more real!

Go Big

Credit: Pixabay

If you really want to treat the new addition or family to something a little special, but can’t afford to go it alone, think about joining forces with friends or family to split the cost.
There are many expensive items that the new family would love to have, that are genuinely going to make their life with the new one a lot easier. They will just not be able to afford all of them in one go when budgeting for their new family member! Despite this, if they are anything like my friends, they would never want or expect anyone to help them out in that way. When we have managed to clubbed together as a group for something a little more hefty however, we have been blown away by how touched our new parent friends were!

I may still be in the independent stages of my life, but I absolutely adore the excitement and anticipation in the air when one of my friends are expecting! Our friendship group are a little more comfortable for cash these days too, so we are able to get something extra special for our parents-to-be friends. Yet, this doesn’t always make it easy to get the right thing! I hope this has given you some inspiration for finding the perfect gift. Please let me know if you have any other recommendations in the comments section, you never know whether a happy announcement is just around the corner!

Hidden Holidays: Gems of the World

August means holiday time for most and looking online there are plenty of great packages that can help you get that tan without having to worry about where to get dinner. Although there are many inclusive holidays, they all seem to target a group of specific popular destinations repeatedly. Where are the hidden gems of the world? Whilst browsing around for alternative #travellinggoals, I found some beautiful destinations. They may not the seven wonders; but these natural, secret escapes are guaranteed to make your holiday unforgettable.

The Short Hop: Croatia

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This beautiful place is located South East Europe and best enjoyed during an off-peak season for the most authentic experience. Croatia is a brilliant option for those wanting to explore heritage and coastal surprises. The coastline boasts breathtaking caves great for avid snorkelers or sea babies. An example of this magnificent seashore is the Blue Grotto based in a small bay called Balun. It is said the best time to go is between 11am and noon when the sun is hitting the cave at just the right angle to reveal the sea of ‘silver’ objects below the gorgeous blue water.

If you are more for land, Croatia is home to some stunning national parks like Palenica and Plitvice. These two walking trails are the most popular, so best enjoyed in the less tourist-y seasons. If you are visiting during the peak times, there are some quieter places for an active holiday. Vis Island was not accessible by tourists before 1989 as it used to be a military base.  All that time away from the crowds has ensured preservation of character. There are wonderful local food and wines to enjoy in the evenings too.

The Long Haul: Bolivia

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Located in central South America, this place is a stunning destination for those excited to explore some of the world’s most awe-inspiring creations. Bolivia is bursting at the seams with both natural and historical heritage, with spots like the Casa Nacional de la Moneda, which is a UNESCO World Heritage site and a gorgeous one at that. This destination is also perfect for foodies, with a mix of Spanish cuisine and exotic ingredients that are sure to please your palette.

As if that’s not enough to tempt you, this breath-taking country is also home to the ‘largest mirror on earth’. Salar de Uyuni or the Bolivian Salt Desert is the biggest salt flat in the world and during the rainy season when it floods, the flats create an incredible endless reflection of the skies above it. When planning your Salar de Uyuni tours, keep in mind the season, as winter (August – December) is dry so you won’t see the mirror effect in its full splendour, however it will be drier for the rest of your Bolivian adventure!

City Break: Marseilles

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Discover a lively scene in Marseille, France and explore boutiques and quaint coffee shops.  Marseille has amazing architecture and historical sites such as the famous Notre-Dame de la Garde or the old port of Marseille, which is great for kayaking adventures. For social butterflies, the Friche la Belle de Mai comes highly recommended as the place to be for the art and social scene. This looks like it would be lovely on a warm summers evening

Much like Bolivia, this place would be a foodie’s dream. There are many gourmet cultural restaurants that cook cuisines from all over the world. Form North African delicacy’s like Le Souk, to Classic French food like Chez Fonfon.

Beach Break: Isola Bella, Italy

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This is the type of destination that the locals don’t want you knowing about! Going for a beach holiday can be stressful with crowds of people rushing to get the best spot in the mornings. However, you can’t get more quiet or discrete than this stunning little islet. The beach, named Taormina, is a scenic destination full of fun activities like scuba diving and boat trips.

This island originally started out as a small fishing village before becoming a sought-after location featuring the Grand Palace – which looks like something out of a Disney film! This beautiful spot has treasures waiting to be explored like the vibrant garden full of botanical marvels. If you are a music lover, every year this island plays host to the Stresa music festival presenting a variety of classical and jazz musicians.

On my online adventure to find a getaway off the package holiday track, I truly have discovered some real gems! From the biggest mirror in the world, to a man-made island of the utmost beauty – these places have definitely made it onto my bucket list.

Have a dream destination you’d like to share, leave it in the comments!

Classic Ways to Spruce Up Your Home

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Summer is all about getting out in the sunshine and enjoying the environment, so why not release a breath of fresh air into your home interiors as well? Every now and again, our dwelling needs a little love and care, whether that be lick of paint or a new pair of curtains. Sprucing up your house is not just a fun and engaging prospect; a good session of ‘out with the old and in with the new’ can be very calming and refreshing for the mind too. Without further ado, read on for three classic ways to spruce up your abode this Summer!

Minimalist & Modern

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Follow the advice of iconic designer William Morris and ‘Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.’ All that Summer air clears the mind and what better time to have a look at your home with a fresh pair of eyes. Clearing the clutter that you no longer use will create more space and allow for features and accent furnishings to shine.

Remember that 2017 has seen minimalistic interiors boom, with many sticking to natural colours and textured finishes. This look often employs one colour in different shades to create depth and contrast within the space. I love browns and greys to give a nautical feel without the obvious bright blues and stripes, making this a very transitional look throughout the year.

Fabulous Focal Features

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You can create the perfect focal point whilst at the same time re-energising a room and creating conversation. You may even have a potential feature without realising! Windows and fireplaces are commonly overlooked, but accentuating these features with colours and embellishments is an affordable and easy way to develop a room’s unique style.

If you are not keen on feature walls and accent pieces, hanging art is a lovely means of bringing beauty and interest to any space. With the never-ending combinations of mediums and movements, you can find a piece that ties together your colour scheme whilst creating a wonderful centrepiece. Even better, if you don’t have time to browse local galleries, there are lots of places to buy art online whether you are looking to invest in an original painting or simply something bright to compliment what you have already.

Snug Staples

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If there’s anything that comes above style, it’s comfort and your house should not only be visually pleasing, but also a cosy place to socialise and relax after a long day. Essential furniture like beds, sofas and tables should be of long-lasting high quality. With summer here, there are plenty of summer sales to help you get your hands on some affordable yet chic furniture. Choosing new curtains for example, can give a whole room a face-lift and shelves no longer need to be boring. Box shelves and wall units are a very popular way of creating storage solutions that also act as an interesting focal point.

To sum up, your home should be a calming environment which reflects your favourite style and tastes. A healthy change to your habitat can make it an inspiring and motivating one to dwell within. Some view this as an added expense, however the quality of life, experience and added value you will gain from an interior refresh will have a positive effect on all aspects of your life.

 

Glow for Pride: The Essentials

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Get your rainbow colours on because it is that time of year again! Brighton Pride is just around the corner and the whole city is super excited to get out there and celebrate in style. It promises to be bigger and better every year, and my, does it deliver. Eccentric floats and extreme outfits make Brighton Pride the highlight of my Summer, not to mention it’s right on my doorstep! This joyous occasion does brilliantly in bringing everyone together to celebrate equality and diversity. As a spectator, you aren’t required to dress up however, it is the perfect time of year to splash on some colour and be confident in your skin.

This is our ultimate Guide to Pride 2017!

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Beauty

The key to avoiding beauty disasters is to have a good base to work with. Not your foundation base – but the skin beneath it. It is important to look after your skin all year round, however for special occasions you can up the ante a little to get that extra glow. Using the correct skin care products for your skin type can revolutionize the way the makeup sets on your face. Pride is all about being your best self with confidence and what better way than to show off with a confident summer glow.

Highlighters and radiance cremes have been massive this year, they are perfect products to help you get luminous skin when you need a little pick me up. Unicorn and, of course, rainbow highlighters are a hot favourite for this year. The rainbow metallic style colours are just beautiful and will have you lighting up at the parade like a disco ball!

Once you have that smooth, naturally glowing base…time to get creative!

Scouring Pinterest, it is almost obvious that rainbow eyes are the classic favourite. From rainbow eyeliner to colourful brows, there is no stopping the force of the rainbow! If you are wanting something a little less bright, but still a showstopper, confetti or glitter liner is a great way to go. Layer on the glitter and light up the room, like the true star you are.

Clothing

The weather will play a huge part in what you choose to wear but my advice to you is, be prepared. The UK is famous for its irrational weather, especially with Brighton being so close to the sea. Saying that, the past few years have been bright and sunny so I am hopeful that this trend will continue.

If the weather is a temperamental, don’t be caught out! You will likely be dancing and drinking well into the night too, so ensure you wear more than one layer. A light cardigan or jacket can easily be tied around your bag to free your hands up for dancing.

Standing and watching the amazing floats can take its toll so well fitted, comfortable shoes are an essential. Clothing-wise, leave the dark colours at home and dress in bright colours – loud and proud. The rainbow flag is the iconic symbol of the LGBTQ+ community and during the parade there will be a sea of rainbow colours, so get involved. Usually there are people who walk along the parade route before the event starts selling rainbow flags and accessories, a perfect chance to add some more colour to your outfit.

Bag

No one wants to carry a bag around Pride, however you’ll likely need one to pop your essentials in. Aside from the basics like your purse, phone and keys, here are three things that you may not have considered taking:

  • Portable Chargers, these will be your lifesaver. Unlike us humans, phones do not have the party-lasting power. The last thing you want is to lose your friends and have a dead battery. To avoid any loss of communication, bring a charged up portable charger so your phone can last as long as you!
  • Sun cream, if the weather is good bear in mind that most pubs and clubs will be jammed encouraging you to take the party to the streets. In all the fun, you may forget to apply sun cream. Don’t risk waking up the next morning with a hangover and Reapply factor 30+ every two hours to protect your skin.
  • Identification, most people carry this key to pubs and clubs any way. However, some don’t – double check you have this little card with you before you leave the house otherwise you will not be getting in anywhere!

Transport

The parade as fun as it is, makes getting from A to B near enough impossible. Make sure you plan your route in and out of there. Check the Brighton and Hove Buses social media and website for updates, even the app will have news and information regarding bus times and delays. Book a taxi in advance and beware that the fares may be a little higher than expected as it can take longer to get into town. Returning to your home or hotel, it is best to book a taxi before in advance – trust me, you do not want to be waiting in a long queue at two in the morning.

Along with those awesome tips do remember the safety basics as you would whenever you go out. Have a confirmed meeting point with your friends if you lose each other, never put down your drink and trust your instincts. With all that in mind, have a wonderful, safe and glowing Brighton Pride!