Monday, 27 October 2014

5 easy ways to get a good nights sleep - tonight!

how to get a good nights sleep

When the lovely folks at Casper got in touch, asking me all about bedtimes gone by, I couldn't help but take a trip down memory-foam lane and reminisce about my bedtimes as a kid.

Casper believe that the right mattress doesn't just give you a proper nights sleep, but also the start to a happier, more productive day - and I couldn't agree more. I've always believed sleep is important - yes, it sometimes kills me when I think about how much I could get done during those hours but, without it, I wouldn't function - none of us would! A good nights sleep consists of two things if you ask me, a supportive mattress, and a good bedtime routine!

When I was younger, I was one of those weird kids (no surprise there) who really loved bedtime. My parents might tell you differently but from what I can remember, I loved it. I loved getting into my pjs, snuggling down under the quilt and reading stories. For years, my mum signed up to a book club that sent out a selection of Disney stories (again, no surprise there!) and slowly, I built up shelves full. I would pick one or two off the shelf and bring the quilt up as far as it would go, then read myself to sleep.

casper mattress review

I'm pretty sure they where all my favorite at one point or another, but the one I remember picking up the most was Lady and the Tramp. I've always been a dog lover and forever pestered my parents for a pet. I was also convinced I would grow up the be a vet someday! I eventually got the pet, but the closest I got to being a vet was a Polly Pocket vet set!

Now I'm older, my nightly routine involves a little more than a bedtime story, but here's my top 5 things to include in your night time routine, to not only sleep better, but to get the most out of your beauty sleep.

1) Get yourself in a routine to begin with!

How do we get babies and little kids to go to bed? We train them in a way with a set routine which happens the same way, at the same time every night. Our bodies love routine, so start with bedtime. Start your routine about an hour before you actually want to go to bed, giving you plenty of time to get through it without having to rush!

2) Switch out the lights!

And back-lights! Ideally, you should stop using electronic devices around 2 hours before you want to go to sleep. This gives your brain a chance to start switching off and your eyes to start resting. I know, I know, I'm guilty of tweeting in bed too - but it'll keep our brains firing and make it harder to drift off into a natural sleep.

3) Write it out!

I find writing before bed one of the best ways to get some sleep! Just take a couple of minutes before bed to write down whatever's on your mind. It could be a dear diary, a list of things your thankful for that day, or a vent about a bad day at the office. Writing it all down gets it off your chest and out of your mind, clearing it so you don't start thinking about it all after closing your eyes!

4) Get comfy!

Invest in the right things - a good mattress, pillow, the right quilt and good pajamas! Don't wear your summer pjs in the winter, and vice versa. Get a mattress that's going to support your back, neck and shoulders. Side sleeper? Back sleeper? Get the right pillow for your sleeping preference. It's amazing the difference the right equipment can make!

casper mattress review

5) Sort our tomorrow before you end today!

Make your lunch the night before or iron and lay out your clothes. Not only will you run around less frantically the next morning, but you'll be able to grab a few extra minutes in bed too - now doesn't that sound appealing? And if you don't need those extra minutes, use them more productively; cook a good breakfast or do some light exercises to really kick start your day!

Do you have any great tips to share on getting a good nights sleep? Let me know in the comments below!

Until next time,

((images courtesy of Casper))

Sunday, 26 October 2014

Q & A with Saloca #6

We all love to get to know our bloggers a little better, so with that in mind, I've decided to sit down and do a little Q & A session on a Sunday. From now until either I, or you lovely lot, get bored of this, I will be answering questions from this list, as well as any you feel like asking! Go on, it's an excuse to exercise your right to be nosy! Missed part 5? Find it here!

Got a question? Comment down below or tweet me @saloca, or even drop me a line at salocainwonderland[@] ((remove the [ ] ))

What does your joy look like today?
Spending time with family and friends today, that's pretty joyous. Taking a long walk down to the waterfront, taking in the fresh air, people watching, stopping for a slice of really good cake, catching up with some of my oldest friends over good food. If there's people and food, you can be sure I'll be smiling. 

Is it possible to lie without saying a word?
Yes. Sometimes saying nothing at all is a lie in itself. 

If you had a friend who spoke to you in the same way that you sometimes speak to yourself, how long would you allow this person to be your friend?
I really don't know. I'm my own worst critic, but aren't we all? I don't know how I'd deal with those kinds of thoughts I have about myself at times being voiced by someone external. It's worth keeping in mind that if we couldn't take the criticism off someone else, we probably shouldn't be saying it to ourselves to begin with! We all need to learn to be kinder to ourselves, that's for sure.

Which activities make you lose track of time?
Writing. I can sit there for hours and not even realize how long I've been at the keyboard until I stand up and my whole body seizes up. I've lost entire weekends just typing away at the keyboard. Blogging especially causes me to lose track of the time, I get so caught up in working on my own blog and checking out others. 

And Florida holiday planning. I can lose hours and hours to looking into my next Disney trip! Everything from comparing flights to reading countless hotel reviews, looking at pictures, reading trip reports, making an itinerary, making a list of things to do, trawling forums. I love it! 

How about you? Let me know in the comments below!

Until next time,

Friday, 24 October 2014

5 questions you should ask when viewing a rented apartment!

questions to ask when viewing a rented apartment flat

Viewing rental properties isn't easy going, especially when your a first time renter with little to no clue about what kind of questions you should be asking when you attend a viewing. I've been there, stood in front of the letting agent, nodding like a dog in the back of a car, silent, only realizing after the viewing (which are over before you know it!) finding my voice and wishing I'd asked more questions! And when you're part of a group viewing? You've got to fight just to be heard!

The more places you get to see, the more questions you end up having, but are you asking the right questions? I'm no expert that's for sure, but here are just 5 questions I asked that really helped me make the final decision when it came to choosing the right place for us.

What do you know about the building?

If you're looking at living in the city center, especially with a University nearby, this is a pretty important question if you care about what kind of neighbors you could potentially have. Most apartment blocks are not just private residents. I found most buildings had holiday lets (also known as serviced apartments), offices and student lettings. Some buildings will contain serviced apartments to one floor, but others, we found, had them mixed in among the private residents. Chances are during the week, this wouldn't matter, but come Friday and into the weekend, when stag parties and visitors descend upon the city, you might find your temporary neighbors less than agreeable! Buildings with offices are a great choice as most offices will close up by 5pm, and nobody will be around over the weekend. Also, now is the time to ask about concierge, does your building have one? Is there a caretaker? Are there any restrictions, e.g pets, smoking, visitors etc.

What's included in my rent?

Does your rent include any or all bills? (e.g water, electricity). What about a service charge? This is more common in buildings with a concierge. Service charges cover things like the concierge and building maintenance. If that;s not included in your rent, find out how much a month you will be required to pay, it could push the place out of your price range. Now would also be a good time to ask about council tax, what band does the building come under? You'll pay council tax 10 out of 12 months, so you need to factor this into what you can afford.

You should also ask if there is any wiggle room on the rent, i.e, will the landlord take a lower monthly amount in return for a longer tenancy? Our landlord accepted a lower offer than advertised in agreement for taking on a tenancy twice as long as was originally advertised. Note, if more than one party is interested in taking on the property, you will effectively enter a bidding war, where all parties involved will offer various rents and lengths of tenancy, so you could end up paying more than was originally advertised if you go up against others.

What's included in the accommodation?

If you're looking at furnished accommodation, find out what you get. Chances are the flat you are looking at is currently being lived in, so not everything you see might belong to the land lord. Most furnished placed will include white goods; fridge, freezer, cooker, washing machine, and your basic furnishings; bed, wardrobe, couches, etc. You might get the tv stand but you probably won't get the swanky 42" plasma you saw at the viewing. If you already have a tv to bring along, if not, then there's one more thing you'll need to budget for. If you have furniture of your own, you will want to find out if the land lord is happy to remove/store any of the current furniture to make way for your own. And if you don't like how the place is furnished? Ask what you're allowed to remove. For example, we wanted our own mattress in the bedroom, but there was already one there. We asked if it would be possible to have it removed - they gave us permission to get rid of it but we had to do so ourselves. If you do get rid of any of the furnishings, you might have to replace them before you leave or risk loosing money from your deposit.

During the viewing, if the walls look a little shabby or the carpet worn down, mention it to the letting agent. They will pass this information onto the land lord. In our case, the carpets were replaced for us. We have also been told we are more than welcome to paint the walls if we wish, as long as we keep it to neutral colours. So ask, you never know.

What's the deposit?

Generally, most places will ask for a month and a halfs rent as the deposit, then an additional months rent up front. You need to know before you put an offer in for the property, as you could end up in a sticky financial situation if you don't have the money ready. You also need to find out what fees the letting agent charges as you will be required to pay that upfront and it is generally non-refundable. Fees cover the cost of the agency doing background and credit checks on you. Most agency's will charge a set amount for one person, then a lesser amount for each additional occupant.

Ask your letting agency if the deposit goes into a tenancy deposit scheme. When your tenancy comes to an end, if the landlord or letting agent raises any disputes, e.g they claim you have damaged the property or not fulfilled your tenancy agreement in any way, then you could risk loosing part, or all, of your deposit. The evidence is reviewed by an external, impartial body, such as the TDS, who will decide how, if required, the deposit is split between yourself, the landlord and the letting agency.

What can you tell me about the utilities?

You need to know if your water and electricity are run on top up cards, or through a meter. Most find that a meter system is cheaper in the long run. You can also ask who your providers are, e.g EDF for your electricity, United Utilities for your water. Most people stick with whoever was in place when they moved in, but if you're looking to shop around, you will have to find out if you're allowed to pick and choose your own providers. Now would be a great time to ask about the likes of internet and digital tv providers if those are things that are important to you. There's no point buying yourself a sky package if it turns out the building is not equipped for the installation!

Got anything to add that might help others out when viewing rental properties? Let me know in the comments below! I'd also love to know if any of this has helped you out at all! I know when I was viewing places, I was completely overwhelmed and if it hadn't have been for others who had gone through it all before helping me out, well, I'd still probably be bumbling my way through viewings!

Until next time,

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Lush - The Wizard bubble bar

lush the wizard bubble bar review

The winter nights are rolling in, giving me even more reason to fill up the bath and soak away the chill. Ok, so it's not like we really need an excuse for yet another long luxurious bubble bath, but, with the winter bubble bars Lush are in the process of releasing, an excuse is handy to have!

I popped into my local Lush to see for myself what was on offer in their Halloween line and was instantly taken by The Wizard, I mean come on, just look at him! He has a cute little hat, teeny eyes and smells amazing! Without persuasion he went into my basket and came home with me!

Weariness be gone! When your day has been too long or you've over done it the night before, this little purple guy will cast a spell over your bath, not only transforming the water into a magical pool, but transforming your mind too.

Made with fennel oils, tangerine oils and rejuvenating juniper, this is the ultimate in de-stressing and relaxing bath bombs. The Wizard will turn your water the most beautiful shade of purple that my camera failed to pick up. Not only that, but it fills your bath with the finest, shiniest, tiny silver shimmering particles that swirl mesmerizingly around you! I got lost just watching them, catching the light, they looked like little twinkling stars!

lush the wizard bubble bar review

One of the main ingredients in ylang ylang oil, one of my favorites! Not only is it nourishing for the skin, but it smells so heady and divine! It's a very strong lavender-like scent, both my bathroom and skin smelt delightful afterwards. My skin also felt really soft and nourished too.

You really need to crush this little wizard up under running water to ensure it dissolves properly, and look out for the magical (and edible!) little golden stars that appear from within! I know I wasn't expecting those! I love how Lush hide little surprises in their bubble bars!

As with all Lush bubble bars, I'm always a little worried about the aftermath, especially as my bath suite is bright white! After draining the bath, thankfully the suite was still nice and white. The silvery magical glitter had turned into a grey scum around the bath, but that was easily washed away with a blast of the shower! Happy days!

If your looking for a little magic the next time you hop in the bath, then I think you'll fall love with The Wizard - but grab him quick folks, after Halloween he will magically disappear from the shelves! I know I'm tempted to pick up another one in time for the post-party recovery season!

Have you tried The Wizard, or any other of the latest releases from Lush? Let me know in the comments below!

Until next time,

Monday, 20 October 2014

27 things I've learnt on my 27th birthday!

27 life lessons at age 27

Around this time last year, I turned 26. Now, 27, I'm finding time is getting away from me, days are over before they've started, the weeks quickly become months and just when I've worked off those extra Christmas pounds, I'm putting them right back on again!

What's that all about?

I always find myself really reflective on my birthday, thinking about everything that's happened since the last one. Things I've done, people I've met, lessons I've learnt and what not - do you do this too? Birthdays are becoming more than milestones, they're turning into check-points. So, without further rambling, let's check in on the 27 things I've learnt on my 27th Birthday!

1) Out of sight isn't always OUT of mind

Just because you can't see the problem or issue doesn't mean it isn't still there. Instead of putting it out of sight, look it in the eye and deal with it.

2) Don't sweat the small stuff

Cap not on the toothpaste? Toilet seat left up? The bus drove off even though you were running and waving like a loon? Don't sweat it. In the grand scheme of things, is it really going to effect your life in a bad way? Will you lose sleep over it? Will it make you ill or cause you're family harm? No. You know the kinds of things I'm talking about, and it's best just to let them slide, just put the lid back on yourself and walk out of the bathroom. It's really not a big deal!

3) Let it go! 

Bad things happen, even to good people. But hold onto those bad things and you'll only feel all the worse for it. Really, what's the point? How does it enrich your life? Learn to let go of whatever negative thoughts or feelings you're carrying around with you and instead, carry with you all the good times.

4) Forgive and forget

There is no point holding onto something forever. So somebody said something mean and hurtful to you, you've got to find a way to push past that to either salvage your relationship with that person or distance yourself from them and move on. You can't do either without first forgiving them for the wrong they have done you, then forgetting about it. I know you're sat there shaking your head, telling me it's not easy. I know. It won't happen over night, it might take years, but you have to try.

5) Smile

There is something in each and every day to smile about. Be it a joke, a clear sky, a good cup of tea. Find something, anything, and don't rest until you have found that one thing that puts a smile on your face.

6) Push past your comfort zone

Yes, it'll be uncomfortable and probably a little scary too, but do it. You'll never know what you're capable of unless you try. Be it an activity or something new on the menu, break your own mold.

7) You are capable of more than you know

It's amazing what we're actually capable of when we put ourselves out there and try. We are capable of amazing things. I never used to believe that. I used to think I had limits, that my knowledge base and skill set only went so far - turns out I was pretty wrong. Those things I said I could never do or understand in a million years? I can, and I do. All it took was a little hard work and some self belief.

8) Your job and your studies don't HAVE to go hand in hand

At University I studied creative writing and media communication. I then did a Masters in writing studies. I now work in a laboratory - I haven't studied science since I was 16, and I wasn't exactly all that good at it back then if I'm honest. My studies and my job are poles apart, english vs science. Did I ever think this would be the case? Hell no! But 3 years on and a promotion in hand, I must be doing something right. Just because you're not on a career path that matches up with your studies does not mean you're doing something wrong.

9) Plans don't always go to plan

When plans and reality failed to match up I was convinced it was a sign of the Apocalypse. No, really, raining hell fire and all. Turns out, lots of things fail to stick to the plan, but the skies are still pretty fire free. Plans don't always work out, for whatever reason and every reason. Go with it. Sometimes, are plans go wrong for a reason.

10) Never stop learning

I was naive enough to once think that after finishing education, my learning journey was over. I would have all the information I would ever need to function and that was that. Wrong. The world keeps turning, things keep changing and there is always something new to learn. Never close yourself off to learning anything and everything. Watch documentaries, read new books, go to museums and galleries. Learning isn't confined to the classroom or the lecture theater. Learn to cook, to change a bulb, to clean an oven. Read an autobiography of someone you have no clue about. Go to a pub quiz. Learn to make a signature cocktail. Learning is everywhere and pretty much every thing.

11) Get a hobby

I started my blog for two reasons. One of which was to have something to do of an evening after work. Sure, I loved, and still love, coming home and curling up in front of the tv for a couple of hours then going to bed, only to wake up the next day and do it all again - but what was I really gaining from that? I wanted to feel more productive, to have something to focus on so my nights felt a little more well spent. So, I started blogging. It's been almost a year since I got serious about my blog and I haven't looked back.

12) Write

So many people tell me they can't write. That they're not creative or imaginative enough. Well, to that, I say bollocks. Start a blog, keep a diary, scrawl on scraps of paper, writer a poem. Write, write, write! Try morning pages, or free writing, write about not knowing what or how to write. It's amazing how much better you feel just for getting all those thoughts whizzing around your head out and down on paper. Burn it afterwards for all I care - just write something to burn first!

13) Deal with your own problems first

Yes, we want to help others. But we can't help them without helping ourselves first. Sometimes, you have to give someone a rain check and deal with whatever it is that's bothering you, then you can give yourself wholeheartedly to them help them.

14) Don't be afraid to tell people what you're good at

I don't mean shout it from the roof tops or make out like your the bees knees or anything, but, if there's a particular task in work you're good at, or there's a certain skill you have they could benefit from - tell them. Offer your help, they will thank you for it and you may just open their eyes, and in turn doors to opportunities you might have closed yourself off to had you kept your mouth shut.

15) Make time for the people who matter

When you realize you haven't spoken to someone important for a while, don't just think it's their fault, that they're the one whose too busy. Chances are, you've been too busy to contact them. Don't sit around wondering if you should get in touch or wait a little longer to see what happens. Just pick up the damn phone and say hello. I'd bet you any money they'd been having the exact same thoughts!

16) Tell people what you think.

Can you read minds? Didn't think so, and neither can the people around you. I know I have a habit of just expecting people to know when there's something wrong or upsetting me without actually vocalizing the problem. Then, and I'm sure you do this too, I get annoyed they haven't noticed and carry on like everything is OK. It's not OK, and they won't know unless you tell them so. You don't have to be mean about it, and you don't have to go hurting feelings either, but if something is bothering you just let them know, chances are they can help!

17) Go some place NEW

I'm a creature of habit. I shop in the same shops, I eat in the same restaurants, I holiday in the same places. I know what I like and I like what I know...but it turns out, there are things and places and people out there I didn't know that I now really like! Much like pushing past your comfort zone, going somewhere new can be daunting at first, but you can never honestly say you dislike something when you've yet to experience it. If you experience is and still don't like it, fine! At least you tried!

18) Stop worrying

I'm a worrier, I worry about everything and everyone, how they're feeling, if they need a cup of tea or another biscuit, maybe I've cut the pizza wrong and they've been left the small slice? Worry will drive you insane. Worry snowballs, and what starts out as one small thing just builds and builds until you explode with worry and anxiety. Stop. The world will keep turning, if they want a brew they will ask and if their slices are too small, swap with them!

19) Have your own opinion

It's easier to go along with saying and doing what everyone else is, isn't it? But what's the point in being a sheep? I used to think following the crowd was the secret to making friends and being happy, but it just left me with false friends and a frown. Have your own opinion, if you don't agree with the crowd then tell them so, they might not like it, but chances are they will respect you more for having your own opinion and the friends you do make will mean a lot more to you than those you had to be something you're not around.

20) Celebrate!

I've certainly started to notice that as I get older, the need to celebrate things is actually becoming greater, which I find quite strange. I love celebrating my birthday more so now than I have ever done. I look forward to milestones and excuses to celebrate something. It doesn't have to be as big as a birthday or a promotion, it can be the little things too. Celebrate whatever it is and enjoy it!

21) Set yourself a challenge!

Write a novel in 30 days, take the plank challenge, read a book a week for a year, blog everyday for a month. Whatever it is, challenge yourself. I worry about getting into a rut as I get older, getting set in a routine and struggling to break out of it as time goes by. By setting challenges, you're mixing things up a little, doing something different, and it's only for a short time then if you like, you can go right back to the routine.

22) Save!

OK, you should probably start doing this before you get to 27, but if you have little to no savings, now's the time to start. Moving into my own place has made me more aware of my finances than I have ever been in the past. I'm not saying become so tight you squeak when you walk, but start setting aside a set amount of your wages each month for savings. Be it a holiday, moving home or even just Christmas spending money, saving up in small amounts over time is a hell of a lot less stressful than trying to find a lump sum all in one go at short notice!

23) Criticism can be constructive

When someone criticizes something you have made or said, don't instantly jump on the defensive and see it as a personal attack. Chances are, if this is a someone who is close to you, they're giving you constructive criticism. They're not saying you haven't done a good job, they just might know a thing or two about how to improve it or make it easier for you next time. You don't have to take their advice on board but you should at least listen to them, think about it and maybe even give it a go!

24) Make time for family time

Having recently moved into my own place for the first time, it's starting to dawn on me just how little time I'm now spending with my family. It's important to not let this become the norm, especially if you have a strong relationship with your family or are looking to strengthen your current relationship. Make a point of calling, visiting, emailing, texting, whatever it is that keeps you connected.

25) Get cooking

We live in a world of convenience. It's almost too easier to reach for a ready meal or a less than healthy snack. Now's the time to get yourself in the kitchen and get cooking. I'm learning and so should you! Yes it's hard, it's messy, you will spend longer cooking than you ever will eating, you will make a mess and you will get it wrong. But it's fun, a great way to spend time with those important to you by having everyone pitch in, and in the long run, so much healthier for you!

26) Put your health first

More so in the last 12 months, I've really started to take my health more seriously. I'm edging closer to 30 now with each passing year and now that I'm firmly in my late 20s I want to make sure I'm taking care of myself properly. I'm not just talking about the food I eat or the exercise I do, though they're both important, but I'm talking about my mind too. Learning to deal with and avoid stress is a big one, and I'd rather get on top of it this side of 30 than the other!

27) Read more

I've always been a reader, and I encourage everyone to read something. There is a genre out there for everyone, an author that will speak to you, and line that will live with you forever. They say a reader lives a thousand lives and it's true. Not only is it one of the best ways to escape reality or shut out the noise of the commute, but it opens your mind and stretches your imagination.

WOW, if you've made it this far then congratulations! That was a long one, but I really feel this not so little reflections are a must. It's important to not only look at how far you have come since you last birthday, but how you're growing and changing as a person. No matter how old you get, you will still be growing and learning in everything you do.

Do any of the above hit home for you? Let me know in the comments below!

Until next time,

Sunday, 19 October 2014

Q & A with Saloca #5

We all love to get to know our bloggers a little better, so with that in mind, I've decided to sit down and do a little Q & A session on a Sunday. From now until either I, or you lovely lot, get bored of this, I will be answering questions from this list, as well as any you feel like asking! Go on, it's an excuse to exercise your right to be nosy!

Got a question? Comment down below or tweet me @saloca, or even drop me a line at salocainwonderland[@] ((remove the [ ] ))

Do you celebrate the things you do have?

Who doesn't love to celebrate? Birthdays, Christmas etc, if you can buy a greetings card for it then it's a celebration in my book - but I'm starting to realize that celebrating should not be confined to these set occasions. We should celebrate any chance we get, any milestone we reach or goal we accomplish. And we should do it with gusto and flourish. Hire a plane and write it from the sky, share with and involve your loved ones in your celebrations. Celebrate everything, but never forget to be thankful too.

What is the difference between living and existing?

To me, existing is just that, you simple exist, you wake up, you wash, you go to work, you hide behind your desk, you walk out the door at 5pm and take the same route home, you have the same simple fare for tea, you wash, you go to bed, you wake up the next day and so it continues. Living on the other hand just sounds like a roller-coaster ride, with twists and turns, alarms that don't go off, colleagues you share your lunch with, getting lost on the way home, experimenting in the kitchen, taking holidays, racing towards the thrill rides. Living sounds like it is filled with ups and downs, it sounds so much more intense than just simply existing. I know which I'd opt for in a heartbeat, how about you?

If not now, then when?

Tomorrow? Then again, isn't it always tomorrow. But if you really really can't move heaven and earth to get that thing done right now, then make it a priority. As soon as you have the chance, get it done, it sounds pretty important. 

Have you done anything lately worth remembering?

I've moved into my own home, I'd say that's something worth remembering. The early days out on your own are so exciting and I'm loving every minute of it, and every minute is worth remembering! 

How would you answer the above questions? Let me know in the comments below!

Until next time,

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

5 tips for everyday blogging

So, you want to be an everyday blogger do you? I've tried this a few times, mostly for the odd monthly challenge (which is a great way to try out/ease yourself into the possibility of becoming an everyday blogger!). Although I failed to complete the challenge in September, by only a few days, I did learn a few great tips and tricks along the way to ensure I had a post polished and ready to go every day! If you’re looking to write and publish a blog post every day, or even just more often than you currently do now, read on!


Even if you know exactly what you want to write, plan like you don’t. I usually have a few ideas but every so often my mind draws a complete blank. I carry with me a little blogging journal that I use to not only keep track of my posting schedule (more on that in a minute), but to store my ideas too. I plan all my posts in as far advance as possible – sometimes up to a month or more depending on the season and what’s coming up. This way, I know exactly what to write and when it needs to be finished by. It's also a great excuse to buy a really pretty planner!

Posting schedule

Daily blogging or set day blogging, whatever your goal might be, develop a posting schedule and stick to it. Not only will it help you write and update consistently, but it’ll show your audience that you’re consistent and they’ll know when to expect an update from you. Not everyone uses bloglovin, so you want your posting to be consistent, think of it like your favourite tv show, you know exactly when to change the channel and tune in. If it makes it easier, develop themes for certain days, for example, beauty posts go up every Monday, and cookery posts go up on a Friday, that way, if people are more interested in one than the other, they’ll know when to pop on over to your blog.

Write in advance

I write about 99% of my posts in advance, usually up to a week but sometimes more depending on how productive I’m feeling and how much time I’ve got to blog. I generally set aside one day a week, usually a Sunday, to do nothing but work on the blog. Be it writing posts, replying to comments and emails, or catching up with my favourite blogs. I get that not everyone can do this, hell even I can’t manage it every week, but I try. I usually write 3 – 6 posts, and then work on the images as taking and editing them takes a lot more time than writing the posts (but that could just be me!).

Schedule your posts

Once you’ve got a whole bunch of finished blog posts, schedule them. This feature is an absolute lifesaver for me! It means my blog can update consistently without me having to be near the computer. I also don’t have to worry about posts not going up because I’m working or busy. I go through my blogging planner and schedule, check which day the post is due and schedule accordingly then tick it off the list (yes, I’m one of those people!). It also means I have more free time to promote the post, my blog, catch up on other things, or if I’m feeling really productive, work on future posts.

Schedule your social media

You need to get your blog out there. What’s the point in putting all that hard work into creating wonderful content if people can’t find your blog in the first place? This is where the likes of HootSuite comes into play. HootSuite allows you to schedule social media updates in advance, much like you would schedule a blog post. When I’m scheduling blog posts, I try and schedule a couple of twitter updates to go out to coincide with a new post going live. I can’t always be near a computer, and I can’t always get on twitter, especially when I’m in work. Scheduling it all in advance means I can, theoretically, be in two places at once!

As you can see, I pretty much do as much as possible in advance. That’s what works for me. Some people like to be a bit more spontaneous and that’s great too. I find structure and consistency work best for me. There is no right or wrong way to blog, but try out a few of the above tips and let me know how they work out for you, you might just find one that works!

Do you blog every day? Got any tips you’d like to share? Let me know in the comments below!

Until next time,

Monday, 13 October 2014

Life Lately

I don't even want to think about how long it has been since I was able to blog properly. Turns out moving house and not having wi-fi is pretty damn stressful, frustrating, and does not go hand in hand with trying to manage a blog.

For the record, I still don't have wi-fi. Mix ups, delays in the post and issues with sorting out a provider has left us high, dry and stuck on 3G. That being said, we should (all fingers, toes and tongues crossed please) be connected in the next couple of days and regular blogging can commence.

I can't wait!

But enough of that, what's been happening? How are you? What have I been missing out on? I'm frantically pounding away at the keys, much to the annoyance of those around me, in Liverpools Central Library. I'm on some sort of timer so this is putting my typing to the test that's for sure!

I've got a list as long my arm and then some of ideas for upcoming posts. You can expect there to be lots of home related posts too! I'm learning so much, not to mention buying so much - as stressful as moving has been, it's been so much fun! I'm loving shopping for the home, and being the queen of my own little castle. I'm learning a lot too, about living like a grown up, paying bills, cooking, how to live with another person, hell, I'm even learning more about myself everyday. It's certainly been interesting that's for sure!

I'm also loving city centre living. The sights, the sounds, the fact that all my favourite places are just a stones throw from my door step and I no longer have to commute to work. It's sheer bliss and I intend to enjoy every minute of it!

I can't wait to share this little adventure of mine with you all! I also can't wait to have my own wi-fi so I can blog and catch up to my hearts content! I'm even missing taking and editing pictures!

Have you got any tips for me now that I'm living out in the big wide world? Let me know in the comments below?

Until next time,

((image source))

Sunday, 12 October 2014

Q & A with Saloca #4

We all love to get to know our bloggers a little better, so with that in mind, I've decided to sit down and do a little Q & A session on a Sunday. From now until either I, or you lovely lot, get bored of this, I will be answering questions from this list, as well as any you feel like asking! Go on, it's an excuse to exercise your right to be nosy! Missed part 3? Find it here!

Got a question? Comment down below or tweet me @saloca, or even drop me a line at salocainwonderland[@] ((remove the [ ] ))
What can you do today that you were not capable of a year ago?
I'd say lots of things. Purely because I'm a much more confident person these days than I've ever been in the past. I can say yes more, and put myself out there when it comes to new anything and everything, from experiences to food. A year ago I was only just finding this out about myself. A year down the line and I'm loving where life has taken me because of that confidence!
Do you think crying is a sign of weakness or strength?
Both. Sometimes things just get to be too much, way too much and keeping it all bottled up inside is no way to live. It's not healthy if you ask me. So yes, crying can look like a weakness, but just because you can't deal with a situation without crying does not make you weak. I honestly think by crying, you let out all the built up tension and anxiety, which in turns makes you stronger to deal with whatever the situation infront of you is. Cry it out, dry your eyes, and tackle it head on.
Saying that, I cry at films, books, or when I'm really happy too. Make of that what you will!
What would you do differently if you knew nobody would judge you?
OK, this is going to sound crazy, but, if I could, I'd probably do two things. 1) sing, and 2) talk to myself. I love singing and music, I'm just horrendous at signing, I have no sense of key or tone at all! I swear, even the cats tell me to keep it down! But if I could, I'd bellow out Disney tunes and musical theatre favourites at the top of my voice all day every day! Wouldn't you? I'd sing through my life like a Disney film haha!
As for talking to myself, well, don't we all? I have this never ending internal monologue, and when I'm trying to work through something or brainstorm ideas, it goes into overdrive. If I'm home alone I'll talk through the ideas and what not quietly to myself, but in public? I'm pretty sure I'd get taken away in a straight jacket!
How would you answer the above questions?
Until next time,

Saturday, 4 October 2014


I'm moving!!!

Yup. I've mentioned it a few times that over the last few months, Mr.Man and I have been looking for a little place to call our own, well, we did it! We found that little place and we're officially moving in this weekend!

I know things have been quiet around here lately, but for anyone who has ever moved before, I'm sure you know just how crazy moving is! Packing up my 27 years worth of clutter and crap and moving it into the new place, as well as sorting out all the grown up things like bills and utilities during lunch breaks at work have totally taken over my life!

The blog will be back, I've already got a million and one ideas that I'm eager to get started on but, I won't have any WiFi in my new place for two weeks. I will try and ind my way to a library between UN-packing boxes to see if I can do a quick blog update here and there, but for the most part, I'm restricted to using up data on my phone!

I'll still be tweeting out and posting on Instagram so make sure you're following over there for updates, chaos and my first attempts at being some sort of domestic goddess wannabe!

Let the adventures begin!

Until next time,