Collaborations, Travel, Travel with Twins

Lanzarote – Our second home.

Normally at this time of year, as well as planning Christmas and birthdays we, as a family are normally planning our yearly new year trip to what feels like our second home. That being what we call our “paradise Isle” Lanzarote.

33457e09-744c-424b-b993-ef9cfe2a0c45-1

I was asked by Holiday Gems to talk about Lanzarote. I, of course, jumped at the chance. In fact, it’s fired up my love of the island again and so you may see a couple of Lanzarote posts cropping up. One next week about our love for the Festive season over on the Island.

c72066db-070a-40f7-8098-98bab77ff345

Anyone that knows us will know what this place means to us even going as far as to gatecrash our friends holiday to offer to be their tour guide on “our island”

We love all that Lanzarote has to offer.

  • It’s family friendly
  • The warmth & sunshine.
  • Friends we have made over there.
  • Delicious food in some amazing restaurants.
  • Just the whole relaxed feel of the island.

Our first visit to Lanzarote was back in 2010 back then it was just my self and hubby, we called it our honeymoon even though it was nearly a year after we had got married.

I got so emotional on that trip. The landscape was so dramatic. The history of the island really got under my skin.

We spent a lot of our holiday looking at show homes and planning how we would move there and what we could do to earn money when we got there.

Forward to December 2012 and we were parents to a set of nearly one-year-old twins.

We decided it was time to go back and visit the island we fell in love with on our honeymoon.

Lanzarote is great for family’s as well as couples. We had an amazing week again. Since then we have gone back every year sometimes up to 4 times a year!

We have stayed in some amazing resorts & Towns

Playa Blanca / Marina Rubicon

This is located in the south of the island, here you will find amazing beaches like Papagayo – where we are yet to go! But our friends who live on Lanzarote tell us that it’s amazing. Also in Playa Blanca is a beautiful marina, with a shopping centre that keeps improving each year we have been. There is a market at the marina twice a week. Where you can find lots of bargains but be careful of the “fakes”. Playa Blanca hosts one of the islands water parks and lots of amazing restaurants. The last time we were there, there was a lovely little Waffle House on the corner of the main shopping street.

Puerto Del Carmen / Matagorda

Here is one of the busier resorts. Though it still feels a great place for our family.

There is a shopping centre, The Biosphere Centre, with a range of shops and plenty of places to eat after all that shopping. If you find yourself at the Biosphere after dark there is the RoofTop Cinema & 6d cinema experience or the new crazy golf area.

Along what is called the strip are an abundance of restaurants and shops. One of the eating places is run by The sister of a friend of mine who lives on the island. Here you can watch the football, or join in with the entertainment they have on that evening.

Another favourite place we like to eat is in the old town of Puerto del Carmen. The restaurant we normally opt for is La Serena. Opposite is a play park that is gated, so safe to let the kids on to play while in a morning you enjoy a coffee, or in the evening a glass of wine or a cerveza (beer)

In Puerto del Carmen there is lots of beach to make use of, whether that for sunbathing or castle building.

There are other resorts on the island that we have visited but not yet stayed. Like Costa Teguise and Puerto Calero.

We have however stayed in a couple of the more local towns like Tias & Playa Honda.

We love to stay in these towns and act like we are one of the locals, though I’m sure we stick out as tourists like a sore thumb.

Around the island, there are many places to visit like the volcano -Timanfaya and bus tour, The caves made by the lava that flowed when one of the volcanoes erupted around 4000 years ago and The home of the islands famous artist Cesar Manrique. To name a few.

fa438c71-3c4b-480f-9d10-cdc638c02c62

One thing our kid’s love, is to try out new play parks. I once joked we were travelling the island one play park at a time.

As the island is such a family friendly place there are play parks dotted around in most places.

A typical day for us when we are there starts with a trip to the cafe, then head to the play park with our take-out coffee, juice and a sandwich or croissant with ham & cheese. And usually ends with a cuppa and a cake at a cafe with a play park.

I could talk about “our island” all day so if you’re planning a trip there and want to ask me anything drop in the comments and I’ll answer the best I can.

Next year we are planning to take a couple of trips to Lanzarote to introduce our newest twins to our second home.

Recently I have found Holiday Gems a travel service that can help you to find your perfect holiday.

They asked me to collaborate with them on this post to let you know about them and about my family’s favourite place to make memories.

I’m going to head off to their site now and check out the great deals they have for our next Lanzarote Holiday.

look out for more Lanzarote posts coming up in the future.

4b6350ab-7eb3-407a-93c2-2a18080d8992

Nina x

Thank you, Holiday Gems for collaborating with me on this post.

e7baafba-0b06-4862-9ced-654560274ad5

Christmas, Collaborations, review

Stocking filler ideas with The Sports direct £5 challenge. With BritMums.

The Countdown to Christmas is well and truly on the way with only 1 more paydays left beforehand I really do need to crack on with my shopping!

So when BritMums asked me to take on the £5 Christmas  Gift Challenge I Jumped at the chance.

Armed with a list of people who I need to buy for I set to and headed to the online Christmas gift guide!

There is much more than I thought Sports direct sold.

I loaded my basket with stocking fillers for my kids, along with a gift for a friend of mine who is often found taking selfies.

I hit checkout and was given 3 delivery options, the impatient part of me nearly hit next day delivery, however, I chose the cheaper option of standard it means my Items would still be delivered by the end of the week (3 – 5 working days) Sure enough, it arrived only 4 days later!


My Haul

First up I spotted this Selfie Booth kit for £5 reduced from £15

IMG_1714

I had just the friend in mind she is always taking selfies this will be fab for one of her stocking fillers! At £5 it such great value with a selfie stick included in the box which alone retail around the £5 mark. With it is a Bluetooth shutter and a range of props idea for a party photo booth.


With Christmas and two birthdays, fast approaching I’m on the lookout for inexpensive gifts for the kids When I saw these rolling art desks at £5.99 each (so a little over my budget) I had to get them.

IMG_1717.jpg

My big girl twin is a huge fan of frozen so this will be great for her and the Marvel one I’m sure my Big boy twin will love just as much. When they arrived they were much bigger than I expected and a lot more sturdy. I’m sure they will love these for their birthday! Well worth more than the £5.99 I paid for them.


This will be our new Twins 1st Christmas and they will only be 4 months old so they won’t really realise anything but I think they will need a few gifts from The big Man So these Fisher-Price Teething Rings at just £1 each are amazing value!

IMG_1715.jpg

Unfortunately, these are no longer on the Sports Direct website however they do have other amazing value gifts on there.


Finally, I bought this Raging Bull Rodeo game reduced from £10 to £5 

IMG_1731

At first glance, I thought it was great value for £5 however once I opened the box and tried to play with it, the bull didn’t seem to click into place properly so just spun around before any of the items were placed onto the saddle.


All in all, I think I did well on my challenge and there are loads other amazing gift ideas on the website!

 

#sdfiverchallenge Christmas Challenge, sponsored by Sportsdirect.com

All opinions are my own!

Nina x

Collaborations

Budgeting, & free Samples Scoring The Best Free Samples: How To Get Products While Avoiding Spam

So this year I’m all about how to save money & budget better. 

I was asked to collab on this informative post with Free Stuff Baby. Free samples can make great gift basket items. 

Have a look below to see how you can get the best free samples. 

 

If you know where to look, there are a lot of free samples out there. Companies want to draw in new customers, so they give away products to get them interested. However, while this can be great for you, you also need to know how to avoid junk mail, spam and scams in the process.

 

Scoring Free Samples

 

There are a lot of websites that devote themselves solely to finding the best freebie deals out there. They do the work and you can reap the benefits. Occasionally, you may have to interact with the site in some way to get the sample. For example, you may need to provide your email or complete a survey to be eligible.

 

Free Stuff Baby is a great place to start your search. Be aware, however, that the site simply lists the deals. It is up to you to determine if you feel the company giving out the freebie is legitimate.

 

Set Up A Special Email

 

When you go after freebies, you can expect to receive a lot of spam mail as a result of sharing your email address. Therefore, set up an email specifically devoted to your freebie pursuits. That way, the email you use to connect with family and friends will not get bogged down with junk. Make sure that you don’t put in a false email in order to get the freebie. You might need to check shipping information or take additional steps to get your product, so the address needs to be valid.

 

Figure Out The Good From The Bad

 

Some offers out there are simply not legitimate. If you carefully consider an offer, you can likely figure out which ones are real and which ones are fake. Most companies, for example, only give out a sample size of a product so you will be enticed to buy more later. If a company is offering up an expensive product for free, like a tablet, they are probably not legitimate and just want your contact information.

 

Don’t Give Out Certain Details

 

When signing up to receive a freebie, you will naturally be asked to provide a certain amount of information. For example, you have to give your email address if you want to receive the product. You also need to give out your name. There is not much else that you should have to provide though; a phone number may be necessary, but if you give it out, know that you could get phone calls from telemarketers. If you are asked to provide a lot more personal information, it should raise a red flag.

 

Be Quick

 

Some offers are only good for a certain number of people. For example, you might have to be one of the first one thousand people to enter your email address in order to get a product. Make sure you are ready and waiting for these deals. If you have to log into a site, do so before the offer starts.

 

Celebrate Your Birthday

 

There are a lot of businesses that give out freebies for birthdays. For example, you may be able to get a coupon for a free dessert with your meal. Simply look for birthday freebie sites and choose the offers that appeal to you.

 

Never give out your credit card information in order to get a freebie; you don’t necessarily know who you are giving your information to. Even if you determine that the website is on the up and up, it isn’t a good idea to set up a “free” trial. Unless you are vigilant, your card is likely to be charged as soon as the trial ends. Therefore, proceed with caution in these circumstances. It is usually better to move on to the next deal instead.

12 Weeks Of Christmas, Blogging, Christmas, Collaborations, Days Out, Travel

12 Weeks to Christmas – Surviving The Christmas Market

Lincoln Christmas Market is one of the Biggest Christmas Markets in Europe. In just under two weeks I will be joining the 250,000 + visitors soaking up the festive feel.

1920319_10152929836523828_4132192903759051036_n-1

But heading to a festive market especially with anxiety can be a daunting prospect!

Here are a few things to help me survive my day out!

  • Travel – How am I going to get there? Make sure your not already stressed from taking a wrong turn or because your running late for a train. If its a big Christmas Market be aware that some roads may be closed
  • Parking – Is there a park and ride? DO you have change for the meter?
  • Clothing – Make sure you have suitable clothing & footwear. There will be alot of walking and you will no doubt have lots of bags to carry.You dont want to get to hot!
  • Have your Christmas list with you! That way you know who your buying for and roughly what you want to get
  • Get a shopping list too – Are there some things you would like to purchase on the day? A snow globe, some christmas potpourri maybe?
  • Stick to your budget! – If you have a budget for the day dont go over it! Do you really need another candle holder?
  • Make stops throughout the day for food & Drink – Don’t just fill up on samples and Glühwein Make sure you hydrate with water or a cuppa!

This is the first year I’ve been to the market since I was a child and I’m really looking forward to it!

Have you been? What stalls can you recommend I visit?

Don’t forget to head over to my YouTube Channel As I will Vlogged my trip to the market! So you will be able to see how I get on.

img_0289-2

I have set up a pinterest board for my 12 weeks of christmas posts.
see-you-next-time-nina-1

12 WEEKS OF CHRISTMAS SERIES

  1. 12 weeks of Christmas- Welcome
  2. 12 Weeks Of Chritsmas – Bucket List
  3. 12 Weeks Of Christmas – Days Out12 weeks of Christmas – Shopping List 
  4. 12 weeks of Christmas – Plan with me
  5. 12 Weeks Of Christmas – Advent Calendars 
  6. 12 Weeks Of Christmas – Elf On The Shelf 
12 Weeks Of Christmas, Christmas, Collaborations, Days Out, Travel

12 Weeks to Christmas – Advent Calendars

In just under 4 weeks it will be opening our advent calendars and this year I’m planning on getting away from the regular chocolate variety and opting for something different.

To help me make up my mind i have been looking at reviews from last year and looking for inspiration in the shops christmas departments.

Here are some of my favorites.

Kids 

Playmobile do a range of advent calendars Christmas themed as well as pirate theme and princesses for the girls.

Lego also have a great range from christmas themed to star wars So not just for the kids 😉

Other great non chocolate Calendars for kids.

Vtech toot-toot Ideal for toddlers.

236416421

Play doh also have a couple one is the new Doh Vinci range of PlayDoh the other a regular PlayDoh with festive cutters.

Men

For the men there are some great calendars out there.

I saw this one in Debenhams the other day  it actually works well if you put everything together correctly that is!

106010750099

Or what about this from Uk tool Centre?

p-145328-wera-advent-calendar-2016-html

Coffee Lover? what about this from Not On The High Street.

shopping-4

Or this for Beer addicts  From Waitrose.shopping-3

To go with the beer what about a bag of pork scratchings.

shopping-2

Ladies

There are so many advent Calendars this year that I would love!

This is the Yankee Candle one for this year  I already have this on order so you will be seeing it featured in my Vlogmas Daily vlogs on you Tube.

1521558_GB.jpg

Bomb cosmetics also have a great calendar a different product for each day in the run up to Christmas.

71koee6w64l-_sl1447_

There is this Charm bracelet Calendar from Meri Meri.

25438

Fellow Vlogger Tanya Burr also has her own advent calendar this year however its only a 12 day one so one beauty  for each of the 12 days of Christmas.

KEXWH_SQ1_0000000088_NO_COLOR_SLs.jpeg

Sanctuary Spa Also have this so by christmas you will be able to have your very own home spa!

32028-ccf5bad0fdef47480e5d80e3ef236dce.jpg

The one I am looking forward to opening each morning after the school run is this form The English Tea Company – A cuppa a day up till christmas.

81hypqorzl-_sl1500_

I’m so looking forward to the festive season and opening our advent calendars

I hope I have given you some ideas of the usual Chocolate alternatives.

img_0289-2

I have set up a pinterest board for my 12 weeks of christmas posts If you want to join in with this series why not join in with the weekly Link Up!

see-you-next-time-nina-1

12 WEEKS OF CHRISTMAS SERIES

  1. 12 weeks of Christmas- Welcome
  2. 12 Weeks Of Christmas – Bucket List
  3. 12 Weeks Of Christmas – Days Out
  4. 12 weeks of Christmas – Shopping List 
  5. 12 weeks of Christmas – Plan with me
12 Weeks Of Christmas, Christmas, Collaborations, Travel

12 Weeks to Christmas – Plan With Me

Tomorrow is Halloween and then it will be bonfire night that means christmas is next up on the calendar!

SAMSUNG CSC

We have a very busy December so I like to plan a head and I always start by filling in a diary of big days in December We have 2 birthdays, a wedding anniversary and Christmas day

Then I put down all the events we have planned

This year we have J & M’s birthday party, a christmas party we are hosting , a trip on a santa train, village lights switch on, xmas eve meal,

When all events are in I’m ready for writing up a gift list!

Writing down everyone we buy gifts for.

Next up are any menu plans for dinners or parties we are hosting.

We have our main Christmas dinner on christmas eve so I write-up a rough plan of what I’m cooking.

When food is taken care of I will go to pinterest and magazines and look for table decor ideas.

Also When I’m planning Christmas I write-up a plan of any household  jobs that need doing before the big day.

At the moment one job is to finish off the downstairs shower room. So paint and flooring are ordered and finishing it is on my agenda!

I also like to have a rough plan for Elf On The Shelf

This year I want to do something a bit different with Elf On The Shelf. More on this in a separate post!

Thats about it!

So lets get planning!

img_0289-2

 

I have set up a pinterest board for my 12 weeks of christmas posts If you want to join in with this series why not join in with the weekly Link Up!


see-you-next-time-nina-1

*items featured in this post can be found using my “Want Feed” Just follow the links and it will take you to the page full of Christmas Items.

12 WEEKS OF CHRISTMAS SERIES

  1. 12 weeks of Christmas- Welcome
  2. 12 Weeks Of Chritsmas – Bucket List
  3. 12 Weeks Of Christmas – Days Out
  4. 12 weeks of Christmas – Shopping List 
12 Weeks Of Christmas, Christmas, Collaborations, Travel

12 Weeks to Christmas – Shopping List Wish List!

It’s Sunday so I’m back with another 12 weeks of Chritmas post

This week is a wish list of things to help the festive period go smoothly.

 

 

 

Thats my shopping list at the moment.

I will know doubt need loads more that this over the festive period.

I hope you can join me next week I will be doing a christmas plan with me!

 

 

I have set up a pinterest board for my 12 weeks of christmas posts If you want to join in with this series why not join in with the weekly Link Up!


see-you-next-time-nina-1

*items featured in this post can be found using my “Want Feed” Just follow the links and it will take you to the page full of Christmas Items.

12 WEEKS OF CHRISTMAS SERIES

  1. 12 weeks of Christmas- Welcome
  2. 12 Weeks Of Chritsmas – Bucket List
  3. 12 Weeks Of Christmas – Days Out
12 Weeks Of Christmas, Blogging, Christmas, Collaborations, Days Out, Travel

12 Weeks to Christmas – Days Out!

Good Evening,

It’s Sunday which means its time for another Christmas Post

Today Is a list of Christmas themed days out that will get you in a festive mood.

img_0289-2

  • Nene Valley Railway – Santa Special  – We went to this a couple of years ago and have booked it again this year! Before you board the train you visit santa and get a gift. Once the train arrives its time to board.  On the trip santa visits all the carriages and asks what the children want for Christmas. There are elves that give out sweets to all the children. There are drinks on board for the adults too!
  • Hyde Park Winter Wonderland  – I keep seeing this advertised and think it would be an amazing day out for us all.
  • Lincolnshire Festive Food & Gift Fair – I’ve just booked my tickets to this. It looks like a great day for the whole family. New this year is santas workshop which includes christmas story telling craft activities and a visit from santa. There is also stalls for mummy to look around. lots of food to sample as well as the Lincolnshire Kitchen where there will be demonstrations to give us inspiration for the festive period.
  • Santa, Elves and Sleigh Bells at Tropical Butterfly House From December 17th – Christmas eve there will be a magical sleigh ride through the woods as well as a nativity scene and crafts to do. Also throughout December they are hosting Festive Afternoon Tea’s – This has to be pre booked so I best get that done!
  • Lincoln Christmas Market  – The first weekend of December is one of the  biggest festive markets in the country. I think this will be a day out with the girls rather than with the family. It can get very busy and there is a lot of walking to do! So a day out while the kids are at school I think!
  • Stockeld Park The Christmas Adventure – We went here with my step son years ago. There is nordic skiing through the woods, with displays all around, A festive maze, An ice rink and a visit from the big man himself.
  • Sundown Adventureland Christmas Spectacular – This little theme park hosts an amazing christmas ride every year its such a magical ride for the kids and ends at Santa’s living room where you can tell him what you want on the big day and receive a gift. throughout the park are lots of rides suitable for little ones. There is also angry birds themed area.

I’m really looking forward to spending some quality days out with the kids since they started school full-time ive missed our weekly days out to different places.

Do you have a Festive days out post why not link it up below!

I have set up a pinterest board for my 12 weeks of christmas posts If you want to join in with this series why not join in with the weekly Link Up!

see-you-next-time-nina-1

12 Weeks Of Christmas, Christmas, Collaborations, Travel

12 Weeks to Christmas – Welcome

Good Evening lovely people.

Back in July I attended Tesco’s Christmas in July Event ever since then I have had christmas on the brain! I love Christmas time. The Magic, The possibilities, The family times. So I have created this Series to share my love of the festive season!

img_0289-2

This is the first post in my new series 12 Weeks of Christmas.

With this series I am hoping to inspire you to create your perfect Christmas.

I am just talking to a couple of brands and hopefully I may be able to offer a giveaway.

Each month in my Blog Plans post I will let you know the titles of each post in that month.

This week is just a welcome but as the weeks go on there will be more and more Christmassy posts.

I have set up a pinterest board for my 12 weeks of christmas posts If you want to join in with this series why not join in with the weekly Link Up!


So what can you expect to see in this series –

Well as I’ve said I’m In talks with some brands to run a giveaway! There will be Planning, Bucket lists, a couple of gift guides. I am looking forward to creating a product review hopefully with a brand that fills me with christmas magic! I will be letting you know about our family traditions!

There will also be a post on how I plan to make this year a bit more frugal & clutter free!

Dont forget to follow and like my blog to be sure not to miss out!

 

see-you-next-time-nina-1

 

 

Collaborations, House Love, Planning

“House Love” – Kitchen / Utility Mood Board – With VELUX Blinds

 

We bought our house along with a business from my my Laws, It was very much a house to work from rather than a home that I fell in love with.

My husband has lived there since he was a boy and worked here for the family business when he grew up!

When we moved in we started making it ours straight away by updating the kitchen but after 10 years (a  business that’s now closed, two rabbits that have come and gone, two dogs that have come and gone and now two children that have come and… No wait they are still here and are not going anywhere for at least another 14 years probably.) we are still trying updating.

Recently we have installed a downstairs bathroom and the next project will be replacing a tired conservatory that is on its last legs. We use this area as a walk through but also a utility area.

When My In laws moved in over 20 years ago the conservatory as is now was and old bus shelter that was put up as a make do!

I have been thinking of ways to make this space a little more usable and a nicer place to enter. Although its our back door its where everyone seems to come to!

I love the idea of having roof windows as you can see its just a wooden roof at the moment.

download
I used to live in a house in Whitby and my bedroom and landing had roof windows Like the ones from VELUX.
I loved them It gave a lot more light into what could have been quite a dull room!

Maybe built in appliances to match my kitchen that leads off from my conservatory.
Then It would obviously need some finishing touches.
Plants, fresh flowers a couple of pictures hanging some blinds for the windows.
Are you still with me I started day dream a little then sorry!

I have took to Pinterest to give me a little inspiration for my new project and come up with a mood board of sorts to get me started!

 

https-%2F%2Fwww.veluxblindsdirect.co.uk%2F (1).jpg

 

Are you planning any home projects what do you use to help you plan?

Do you cut up mags or use Pinterest?

Have you moved in somewhere that has took you as long to update as us?

Right I’m off to book the builder

img_0216-2

 

 

This post was in collaboration with VELUX  Blinds

All Photos used in my mood board are credit to VELUX VELUX Blinds and Pinterest