George Kid’s Bedroom Makeover Competition

Noah and I have been asked by George at Asda to get our thinking caps on and come up with Noah’s ultimate bedroom for their current kid’s bedroom competition. Now, I know what I’d choose, but obviously, my seven year old knows better than me.

Our initial conversation went something like this:

Me: Dude, we’ve got to make a picture of what your dream bedroom would look like. Have you got any ideas?

Him: MINECRAFT!

Me: Oh. Are you sure?

Him: Minecraft Minecraft Minecraft!

Me: OK, let’s see what we can do…

So we I had to see what I could do with my very specific brief of “MINECRAFT OMG”. The news that Asda don’t actually stock Minecraft crafting tables or furnaces was devastating news to Noah, then I had to gently break it to him that we probably wouldn’t let him have a means to smelt iron in his bedroom anyway. Instead we set out to give our mood board a pixelated, colourful feel. I also needed to stick within Asda’s brief of not spending more than £400. This could be a challenge.

Brace yo’self for our creation…

minecraft room2

 

Honestly, let me explain.

Firstly, the furniture. I chose good quality, kid-friendly pieces with a modern, modular feel. Noah chose the yellow bed because, well, I don’t think he even knows to be honest. It’s cute though, right?

I spotted the brown rug and immediately thought of a Minecraft dirt block with the different tones and pixelated squares. We then found the green rug and cushions to emulate the same feel of pixels. We then made the bed look like a Minecraft bed with a red blanket and added lots of little accessories to jazz up the place.

Noah would love to swap his current carpet for wooden floor, and I’d use tape on the walls to create squares to make his very own, very real Minecraft room.

I think it’s important when going for a “themed room” to not make it permanent and to create the feel and look your going for with accessories and things that can easily be changed, because when your child is suddenly obsessed with XY or Z, it can easily be changed rather than having to completely redecorate.

I calculate that this room, including furniture comes to £393.00 – I may have been cheeky as Noah already owns LOTS of Minecraft bits and bobs we could use.

What would your little one’s dream room look like? I’d love to know!

Charmed, I’m sure

There are some types of jewellery that you wear to fit with a certain look, to act as an accessory that highlights a neckline on a dress, or to complement some beautiful beading. There are some types of jewellery, though, that mean far more to us.

It could be that we inherited it off a dear relative and we wear it to remind us of happier times with them, but whatever the reason, these types of jewellery are worn day and night, regardless of occasion, and recently I’ve realised the strong attachment people have towards charm bracelets.

Right on trend

Aside from being such a sentimental gift, charm jewellery has become a hugely popular trend in recent years. It’s actually the perfect gift for someone when you think about it, and there are many big-name brands out there that have swept through the fashion world and taken it by storm.

What I love about it though, is that there really is something for everyone. Whether it’s a rose gold, boho-style bracelet with a feather, or an elegant pearl bracelet with a simple peace symbol, I love how people can totally change the style and meaning of a bracelet.

You know me though; I like to be different. Rather than opt for one of the high street brands, I prefer something with a little more of a unique twist to it, which is why the handmade jewellery from ChloBo really stands out to me. A lot of their collections work well together, so you can mix and match different styles to suit your own. What really peaked my interest though, was how they can give you the perfect charm to suit your soul.

The meaning of charms

Charms are quite romantic and mystical, which is probably why so many people love them, and why I’m now hooked too! The idea that the perfect stone can bring the wearer calm and serenity throughout their day, or that it can bring them luck as long as they’re wearing a certain symbol, is something most people would like to believe in. There’s something fun about looking at that side of charms, and I was determined to find mine.

Of course, lots of people can assign different meanings to their charm bracelets and the trinkets they wear, but I think for me, I’d have to go with the dreamball, the hamsa hand, the moon and the tassle. The dreamball is a symbol of a sacred place to keep your dreams, and I certainly have enough hopes and dreams for my future to need a place to store them!

The hamsa hand is a protective sign, said to bring happiness, luck, health and good fortune. The moon is a protective sign too, but also a symbol of magic, which is something I think everyone could use a touch of in their lives. And finally, the tassel, although it is said to distract evil and negativity, I also like to think of as a nod to the fashionista side of my personality.

What would your charm signs be?

Heatwave-Proof Fashion

Now I’m not sure if you’ve noticed in the last few days, there’s been a gigantic yellow ball in the sky, I’ve heard old wives tales and folklore about it, but just in case you weren’t aware – it’s called the “sun”.

The “sun” conducts extreme heat, causing profuse sweating, numerous outfit dilemmas, dehydration, frizzy hair, melted-off make up, and men shedding their tops in public like snakes shed their skins.

Of course I jest, but we Brits are just not made for these seemingly sky-high temperatures of late. Do we don our bikinis and just go with it, because who knows when we’ll see the sun again, or do we surround ourselves with fans, munch on ice cubes and take to social media because “I’M MELTING I HAVEN’T SLEPT IN 5 DAYS”?

Alas, it being summer, my calendar is getting fuller and fuller by the day, with BBQs, weddings and day trips, so the latter, unfortunately, will need to be put on hold. So, how to combat the heat, what do I wear when it’s feels even too hot to breathe?

I have a wedding reception to go to in a few weeks, and the dreaded “I have NOTHING to wear” is plaguing me already. And while I know the bride is checking the Met Office for weather updates hourly for rain, I know on a day I want sleek hair and flawless, dewy skin – it’ll be hot, humid and I’ll be a sweaty heap in a shady corner dropping ice down my front surreptitiously in a bid to cool down while my hair gets bigger and bigger by the moment.

I’ve been on the hunt for a flowy maxi dress – not too formal, not too casual and something I feel comfortable and move in. After searching high and low, Esprit have come to the rescue, with a figurative palm leaf to fan my fevered, sweaty brow.

flowing maxi with tie belt

I think a cool, breezy fabric in this stormy blue shade will look great with a tan, and can easily be dressed up or down (as a mum, it’s a huge plus for clothes to be multi-purpose).

crinkle chiffon maxi

This floaty little number with the beaded neckline is pretty enough to go very minimal on the accessories, a big thumbs up in the heat, with less irritating trinkets and jewellery to bog you down.

flowing jersey maxi

Let’s get some colours happening here, shall we? No other colour says “summer” to me than this coral / watermelon shade. With some flat strappy sandals and simple gold accessories.

flowing maxi dress with frill

I know navy isn’t a typically sunny colour, but the flattering cut and fabric really speaks to me and with sunkissed skin and understated make-up, I think the dress really speaks for itself and will be perfect for a summer evening.

So now I have the dress narrowed down… I just need to sort the shoes now.

Oh. And what do I do with my hair?

 

In a Bedroom Far, Far Away

There was a time, BC (Before Child), when I assumed just one eternal conundrum existed. After being awoken from a Matrix-like slumber, I now realise there are eternal, eternal conundrums.

Today, we’ll be focusing on eternal conundrum number 327. Namely; the correct shade of darkness required for your offspring’s bedroom. Our son cannot, will not, and simply refuses to snooze without at least two night lights on. After years of searching, we appear to have arrived at the perfect combo of a red glowing lamp thing and a mushroom-shaped light that apparently never needs its bulb replacing. Hey, if it works…..

Conundrum time: paradoxically, his brain will not allow him to reach REM without total and utter darkness. You can see the problem. Currently, we read the tales of a young wizard until he’s asleep, quickly run to switch off both lights and then get the hell out of there like we stole something method. It proves effective for the most part. But a lack of a proper nights’ sleep heralds all sorts of nasties: poor concentration, irritability, hyperactivity, struggles at school, constant interrupting of mother and father’s weekly helping of zombies and dragons. The list is endless.

When I said total and utter darkness, I meant it. One burst of moonlight, one garden light-baiting cat and he will awaken, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed. When the clocks change, he’ll be out of bed, dressed for school and searching for a rogue Pokemon before 4am. This is when a friend suggested blacking out the windows. For a low cost solution we used bin bags. Yes. Bin bags. And they kinda worked, so we knew the science was stellar. However, we had bin bags taped to our windows. That’s one the Jones’ didn’t bother keeping up with.

Even though we patted ourselves on the back, there could be no doubt that bin bags on windows began to cause residual effects. When the sun shone, it got so hot in the room we were finding half-naked men – modesty wrapped in towels – sitting on the bookcase concocting shady deals through wafts of steam. Every Tuesday, my son would be awoken by workers in florescent vests trying desperately to remove the bags and take them away. And, well – it just didn’t look very nice.

Then, thankfully, another friend recommended VELUX – one of Great Britain’s and Ireland’s largest window-innovations companies. With an extensively extensive range of competitively-priced blackout blinds, it took no time at all to find the right set for his room. 

In fact, we were so taken with VELUX blindswe returned and purchased a Star Wars-themed set when we redecorated his room into a galaxy scene.

So there you have it. One eternal conundrum solved. Tomorrow we’ll be tackling number 489: what came first – the child or the wine?

How to Create a Relaxing Bedroom for a Young Child

A young child will view their bedroom as their sanctuary, so it should be a space in which they feel at ease, safe, and relaxed. But how can you go about creating a relaxing bedroom for your son or daughter? Well, it isn’t nearly as hard as you might imagine. Continue reading for a few helpful guidelines that you can follow to make the design process as simple as possible.

Install Modern Windows

Modern, eco-friendly windows will help keep the temperature in your young child’s bedroom at the right setting by preventing draughts. Beyond replacing old windows that may be unattractive, unsafe, and noisy, you should also have the right window locks and openers installed to keep your child safe. You can find a lot of these items at Teal Products.

Choose the Right Colour Scheme

The right colour scheme can make a huge difference in whether your child’s bedroom will be jarring or relaxing, so take care to choose the right hues that will work at helping your child feel great. You should definitely avoid red, which can be too stimulating and isn’t a good idea for restless children, but you can go with orange, which actually inspires communication and puts kids at ease. Avoid too much bright yellow, sticking with softer hues instead, and stick with green and blue to reduce anxiety.

Put the Bed in the Right Position

According to Feng Shui, your child’s bed should be placed in an optimal position in order to promote the best sleep and relaxation. Place the bed in a position that’s diagonal from the bedroom door. It’s also ideal to position it so that the headboard will be set against the room’s far wall, giving your child the perfect view of their door to see who’s coming in.

Have Music Available

Purchase a small music player that your child can use to play their favourite songs throughout the day, as well as when they need to relax and go to bed at night. Soothing music can do wonders at calming a child down, and fun songs can be energising and a lot of fun to dance and sing along to, so this is definitely one accessory that you shouldn’t overlook.

Apply the right Window Treatments

Once you’ve installed the right windows in your child’s bedroom, it’s time to decorate them with the right window treatments. Opt for thicker curtains that will help keep the room warm in the winter and will also help your child sleep in the morning when the sun would otherwise be shining in. Make sure the curtains can be opened and closed easily, and choose a colour that will complement the overall theme of the room.

Create a Super Comfortable Bed

To create the ultimate relaxing retreat for your child, you must also pay attention to the bedding that you choose. Opt for thick blankets that will be soothing and warm in winter, and have plenty of pillows to keep your child as comfortable as possible at all times.

With these simple strategies, you’re guaranteed to create a relaxing room that your young child will love.

Get off to a good start with a healthy breakfast

Getting the best start of the day by having a good breakfast is an important part of being healthy. But many of us take this lightly and skip breakfast or choose to have other breakfast options that are high in sugar or fat, which is not healthy at all.

Eating breakfast gives us the energy we need throughout the day. Without this, we can get easily tired or exhausted. Here there are a few simple tips to help you choose a healthier breakfast plan and stay fit.

The following foods are all great ingredients for a healthy breakfast.

Fruit and vegetables: all fruit and vegetables that are either fresh, dried or frozen are great for breakfast. In fact, always have a glass of fresh juice first thing in the morning.

Starchy foods: bread (especially wholemeal), rice and cereals (especially wholegrain) are a good option too. They are highly nutritional.

Milk and dairy: cheese, low-fat yogurt and lower-fat milk are everyone’s favorite for breakfast!

Non-dairy protein: meat, fish and eggs are a great source of protein. Beans and unsalted nuts are a good source too.

Exercise : physical activity is a must in the mornings. Which will help you stay focused during the day and keeps you calm and stress free. You can also indulge in a few games online during the day by registering now at GameVillage Bingo. The site gives you a great selection of games that you are bound to enjoy. This will give you the joy of entertainment and socializing, all in one platform. You can also be part of the online bingo community here which comprises of players from across the UK and super friendly chat hosts of the site.

So, make you you get a great start to the day and go easy on all those unhealthy snacks during the day. Instead snack on foods that contain a good amount of nutrients and fibers.

Work Smart Not Hard: 10 Revision Tips

When it comes to exams it doesn’t matter whether you’re staying in student accommodation in London, or still living at home. The proven tactics for revision are just the same. So, here are some tips to help everyone prepare for those all-important finals. 

1. Finding a quiet and clutter free area to study seems an obvious tip, but many students forget to eliminate distractions before they begin revision. Spending a bit of time thinking about where you’ll work will be worth it in the long run. 

2. A timetable will always help focus your mind on the task ahead, even if you’ve only started revising a few days before the exam. First, make a detailed checklist of all the topics and theories you need to cover. Then decide the most practical order of revision so you can allocate your time sensibly. 

3. It can be tempting to feast on sugary snacks to boost energy, but you’ll just crash into a slump later on. Eat healthily, eat regularly and make sure to drink plenty of water to keep you hydrated.

4. Take regular breaks. Studying for 12 hours straight may prove your stamina, but it’s unlikely to prove your academic worth come the exam. Studies show that 20-30 minute sessions with short breaks in-between are very productive. 

5. Talk to someone about what you’ve learnt. It will help clarify the subject in your own mind, and also alert you to any gaps in your knowledge. 

6. Take notes, make notes on your notes, and then turn those notes into flash cards. The simple act of writing down what you have read will help embed it in your memory. 

7. Exams are important, but if you’re not careful the fear of being tested can seriously hamper your ability to study. Detailed planning for revision and time set apart for completely unrelated activities can help minimise anxiety. 

8. Take advantage of all the past papers available. There only are so many types of questions that will be asked about a specific topic: familiarise yourself with them. 

9. Just 20-30 minutes of moderate exercise a day will boost your blood flow, and increase the amount of oxygen that reaches your brain. This means a gentle jog, or brisk walk, can improve your concentration as well as lower your stress levels.

10. Sleep patterns are often disturbed when exams are looming, but you should still try to get as much shut-eye as possible. Avoid coffee, tea, chocolate and fizzy drinks in the evening, and don’t eat substantial meals after 7pm. Milk, bananas, turkey and walnuts are all thought to aid sleep.

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