Lifestyle

Being Gullible

Hello everyone, I just wanted to share a quick story with you of something that happened on Valentine’s Day.

Andy called me into the kitchen as he said he had something to ask me. So I said ask away, thinking nothing of it. He asked me “what noise does a dog make”, I replied “woof”. He then asked me “what noise does a pig make”, I replied “oink”. Then he asked me “what noise does a dolphin male”, my reply “squeak”. And that is when Andy tricked me by making a blowing noise like dolphins do when they come out of the water, whilst squirting water at me too and saying that’s the noise they make.

Needless to say, I had been had and fell for it hook, line and sinker. It’s not the first time I’ve fallen for one of his tricks (I’ve wrote about other occasions on my blog before) but it did make me start to wonder if I’m really that gullible or if he is really good at acting serious whilst playing a prank.

Andy made up for it though because I came back from work to a bubble bath waiting for me & a heart made out of rose petals outside the bathroom.

Lifestyle

Valentine’s Day on a budget

Valentines blog collab

This blog post is in collaboration alongside 13 other great bloggers who will be posting related content on each of their blogs over the next couple of weeks. You can find out more about who is taking part towards the end of this special post.

Valentine’s Day doesn’t have to cost a fortune

So many people think that they need to spend a lot of money just because it is Valentine’s Day and in previous years, I have been guilty of this too. Me and my other half Andy treat each other throughout the year and so we don’t really need to spend lots of money on one day, especially as its not that long since Christmas. I therefore thought of some ideas to help you do Valentine’s Day on a budget.

As an example, I have £20. That needs to cover gifts, food and entertainment. So lets break it down:

Gifts

I only need to get a couple of things as a token gift, as well as a card that I can write a cute message inside. My first stop would be Poundland, because they have some great gifts in there, such as novelty, arts and crafts to name a couple. I’d also be looking at buying Andy’s card in there too. They do baking sets so you could maybe bake your other half a cake. If the budget allows and depending on what I’ve bought in Poundland, I would then look in a couple of charity shops because they usually have brand new items at a fraction of the cost like branded aftershaves that perhaps people have donated from unwanted presents.

Food

With gifts sorted, I would then look at food. Ordering a takeaway would eat up a lot of the budget and so I would probably choose something from a supermarket such as a pizza or one of those Indian meals for two that come in a bag. These usually come in at £5 or under and so is great if you are trying to save some pennies. I’d probably also pick up some sweets or chocolate for afterwards, if we choose not to have the cake I made.

Entertainment

Why not have a cosy night in. Once dinner is out of the way, you could watch a film together, followed by a board game such as monopoly. Valentine’s day should be about spending that time with the person you love, so whatever you choose to do, make sure it is something you will both love and enjoy. You never know, you might even have change left over from that £20 budget!

February 2020 Valentine’s Blog Collab Schedule

Day 1: @perselem will be posting a romantic getaway to Sardinia, Italy. You can check out her blog here: https://www.perselem.blog, Twitter here: https://twitter.com/perselem and Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/perselem
Day 2: @bamboopanda27 will be posting a Valentines Poem. You can check out her blog here: https://www.introvertedcreativity.com, Twitter here: https://twitter.com/bamboopanda27 and Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/bamboopanda27/
Day 3: Break
Day 4: @mybreakingviews will be posting Things to do this Valentines for singles, couples and groups. You can check out her blog here: https://www.mybreakingviews.com, Twitter here: https://twitter.com/mybreakingviews and Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/mybreakingviews
Day 5: Its me, thank you for reading. I’d like to say a special thank you to Luce for allowing me to take part in this amazing collaboration.
Day 6: @karaleecupcake will be posting a Valentines dessert recipe. You can check out her blog here: https://www.talesofbelle.com, Twitter here: https://twitter.com/karaleecupcake and Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/karaleecupcake
Day 7: @mrssleejones will be posting a simple gift guide for Valentines. You can check out her blog here: https://www.mrssleejones.com, Twitter here: https://twitter.com/mrssleejones and Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/ransleejones
Day 8: @_myanxiouslife will be posting about why should we bother with valentines? You can check out her blog here: https://www.myanxiouslife.co.uk, Twitter here: https://www.twitter.com/_myanxiouslife and Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/my.anxiouslife
Day 9: @_itsjustjessie_ will be posting a gifts (or not) Valentines guide. You can check out her blog here: https://www.wondererandtraveler.wordpress.com, Twitter here: https://twitter.com/_itsjustjessie_ and Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/jessiexmills
Day 10: @cozystylist will be posting a Valentines gift guide. You can check out her blog here: https://www.cozystylist.com, Twitter here: https://twitter.com/cozystylist and Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/all_things_cozy
Day 11: @themakeupbybeth will be posting a Valentines make-up tutorial. You can check out her blog here: https://www.themakeupbybeth.com, Twitter here: https://twitter.com/themakeupbybeth and Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/themakeupbybeth
Day 12: @_athenachristy will be posting Valentines inspired outfits for women. You can check out her blog here: https://www.athenachristy.wordpress.com, Twitter here: https://twitter.com/_athenachristy
Day 13: @chimmykins will be posting about what her parents taught her about relationships. You can check out her blog here: https://www.chimmyville.co.uk, Twitter here: https://twitter.com/chimmykins and Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/chimmykins88

Day 14: @luvandlifestyle will be posting a personal account of how my fiance’ first told me he loves me. You can check out her blog here: https://www.luvandlifestyle.com, Twitter here: https://twitter.com/luvandlifestyle and Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/kirstyblogs/

Books · Lifestyle · Travel

Book Review – Water Gypsies by Annie Murray

I was really excited to reading this book as soon as I got it for two reasons. Firstly, Annie Murray is one of my favourite authors, her style of writing captures my imagination instantly. Her books always run in a series of at least two books so that you can follow the story of the characters. Secondly, I am obsessed with canal boats and always have been since an early age. I buy decorative items from a local man who paints the floral detail on canal boats for a living and as a sideline paints the same detail onto pots, pans and other beautiful pieces.

What I didn’t realise when I bought this book was that it was part two in a series, which luckily I had already read the first book called “The narrowboat girl”. It was a couple of years ago that I read it but as soon as I started on “Water gypsies”, I was transported back into the world of canal boats as if I had read both books one after the other. Whilst you can still read “Water gypsies” without having read “The narrowboat girl”, I do believe you should read them in order to get a better understanding of what character Maryann’s childhood was like before she became a boat woman. Perhaps a good suggestion on my part for the publishers and indeed authors would be to identify their books on the cover so that we can understand its part of a series! With a bit of luck you never know a publisher might be reading this review.

“Water gypsies” tells a more in-depth story of what life was really like for a boat woman in the 1940s and the hardships that were faced that we perhaps don’t think about now.

I felt there was two main points to the story and the way of life for boat families, where they struggled with a large family, little money, hard work for the husband on top of this was World War II.

From the start of the book I was gripped, whereas sometimes i feel starting a book the story line is slow on the uptake. There were so many unexpected twists and turns throughout the story that I just simply struggled put the book down. Annie’s wonderful descriptions of inside the boat caught my imagination so much that I could almost imagine myself being there. Her use of local slang also had me reading the book in my head with a Birmingham accent which was where the character Maryann originated. Overall I think this book was one of the best saga genre books that I have read in a very long time and I will admit that I actually read the last quarter of the book in one go because i was so intrigued to its ending (I finished it at 2am). If you love a little bit of history alongside your romance and saga books like I do then this book is the one for you.

Lifestyle

Christmas Gift Guide

(Some of the items in this “Christmas gift guide” have very kindly been sent to me to sample, all my views stated are honest opinions and I wouldn’t recommend anything I didn’t feel others would benefit. Any prices mentioned were correct at the time of writing however you would be advised to check before purchasing)

The first item I wanted to share with you is for the beauty lover amongst you! I love wearing nail polish and in the past, have tried to do patterns on them to make them look festive. However I have to admit that I’m not very good at it and have limited resources to perfect it.

This is where Creative Nails comes in, because they do the most amazing hand painted nail sets straight to your door. They have various designs to choose from on both their website and on their Etsy shop. You also have the option of choosing the size and length of the nails to make them perfect for you. They even have a customised option for you to choose your own themes. Prices vary depending on how much detail is on the nails so there is something suitable for everyones budget. The Christmas Elf nails retail at £14.99 whilst the Rudolf ones are £12.99 and are packaged in their own box so are definitely worth investing in.

The next idea that you can expand on depending on the individual and that is to create a hamper, in my opinion you can create for any event. I love creating personalised hampers for family members, that I feel they will find useful. Over the years I have found this idea especially useful for grandparents or even your elderly neighbour as I’m sure they will love getting lots of little bits and pieces. This could be a food hamper or a mixture of personal items like cosy pyjamas, a good book, hand cream and chocolates.

Another idea if you want something more personal would be a photo book/album. You could add photos throughout the years from your own collection which will be a keepsake of beautiful memories. I have actually done this for my partner Andy so if you would like any ideas or help, please get in touch with me and I’ll help as much as I can.

Sticking to the personalised idea, did you know that you can buy personalised candles complete with a photo. Obviously this is probably not the type of candle that you’d want to burn, but it can be a great decorative item, which you could even add to the hamper mentioned above. I’ve written a whole blog post on creating a personalised candle with Brinley Williams which I will leave linked here.

For those that enjoy travelling, why not buy a book on the country concerned which certain books contain customs and culture, along with common phrases. If you know someone who has already booked a trip or is about to, these great guides from Culture Smart are perfect for you. These are packed full of tips on local customs and traditions, the do’s and don’ts as well as eating and drinking what the locals do and tips on local transport. These guides are so much more than a holiday guide because they give a background to how the people live, their values and their daily life. The Culture Smart guides are available for so many different countries, so rather than me list them all, I will link their website here so that you can see their extensive list.

Lastly, I want to mention this is not an item as such but more a gift experience. There are so many different gift experiences out there that there should be something for everyone. Whether its a spa experience, a thrill seeking experience or something in between, the recipient would hopefully love it. But don’t worry, if your budget doesn’t stretch to that, wherever you have researched your specific idea from, try researching for cheaper alternatives, the shops for examples.

So my gift guide for this year, I hope I’ve given you some inspiration on what gifts you could give your family and friends. Let me know what your favourite item is I’ve mentioned.

Finally, may I take this opportunity to wish all my followers and especially those who have commented on my posts, a very merry Christmas and happy prosperous new year for 2020.

Aviation · Lifestyle

The Real Heroes – GWAAC

gwaac 1

Who is GWAAC?

It stands for Great Western Air Ambulance Charity (See their website HERE). They are a team of specialist crew of medical professionals who work 365 days a year, attending emergencies, on average of 5 times every day.

They cover Bristol, Bath, Gloucestershire, South Gloucestershire, North East Somerset and North Somerset. However many of the calls they receive are outside of this area, with 108 calls being outside that area so far this year.

2019 is set to be their busiest year to date. The first half of the year saw the number of incidents attended reach 971, with 6 more months to go.

66% of missions were attended by car

33% of missions were attended by helicopter

What do they do?

“GWAAC” attend some of the very worst situations. From roadside blood transfusions, amputations to treating cardiac arrests and administering general anesthetics. They even carry a range of specialist equipment, so that they can treat patients of any age or size, whether that’s an adult or a child.

33% of incidents are cardiac arrests

18% are road traffic collisions

26% other medical emergencies such as collapse or fitting

23% other trauma emergencies such as falls, burns or drowning.

helideck 2

How can I help?

Great Western Air Ambulance Charity is exactly that, a charity. They rely solely on fundraising and donations.

To put it into perspective:

£30 is the cost of one pre-filled syringe with essential stabilising drugs

£175 pays for boots to keep the crew warm & dry

£9,000 pays for a ventilator to keep patients breathing.

Which brings me onto their new campaign…

Social Media graphic

#ChristmasMission

A message from Great Western Air Ambulance Charity:

The festive season is a time for gathering with our friends, family and loved ones to celebrate and feast together. As the nights draw in and the sparkly lights are turned on, thoughts turn to the office parties, family gatherings and mince pies. For many, it’s the chance to take a well-earned break and to get excited about the year ahead. It’s their favourite time of year.

Yet over the Christmas period, it’s a sad fact that many people across our region will be involved in a medical emergency or traumatic incident that leaves them fighting for their lives. When a life-changing incident happens, it’s mot just the person who is affected, but their family and friends too.

This Christmas the Great Western Air Ambulance Charity Critical Care Team will be working every single day across providing potentially life-saving treatment where it’s most needed to children and adults across our region. We attend over 5 incidents each day on average, and some days it’s many more. Our specialist crew bring the expertise of an emergency department directly to the person where and when they need it most.

This is a vital service, yet many people don’t realise that we’re funded entirely from charitable donations. It’s a hard job, which takes a special kind of person, but we couldn’t do what we do without you.

This festive season we’ll be working hard to keep families together for many more Christmases to come. But we need your help to ensure our crew of specialist doctors and paramedics can go where they’re needed most.

Each one of our missions costs at least £1,750 and could potentially save a life. This means we need to raise £8,750 every single day to keep our service flying.

This Christmas, we’re calling on you to help us fund as many of our Christmas Missions as we can. In doing so, you’ll be helping to save local lives.

Please help fund a #ChristmasMission

For more information and to donate visit www.gwaac.com/christmas-mission or visit @GWAAC on Twitter/Instagram and @GreatWesternAirAmbulanceCharity on Facebook where you will also find real life stories of those they have helped. Make sure you check out the hashtag #ChristmasMission to find out how the fundraising is going.

*Disclaimer – Having been a fan of aviation for many years, I have previously learnt about some of the amazing work that air ambulance charities do and so I was honoured when I was asked by GWAAC to help spread the word about their #ChristmasMission. I have not been sponsored in any way to write this post but I would like to give special thanks to the GWAAC for providing the photos that appear in this post.

normal logo