Friday, 30 September 2016

Walt Disney World - Packing Essentials!

disney travel packing essentials


I’m not going to lie, as I type this, the suitcases are behind me and in seven days I will be up up and away on my grand magical adventure! Seven days. SEVEN. Lately, everything is just flying by! The bags are almost packed, the money has been changed, the tickets are almost booked and I’m pretty much just counting down the hours until I’m back in my happy place. 

You’d think I was excited or something!

So, having packed the cases (mostly) I figured I could share some of my must have Walt Disney World travel essentials because hey, it’s not like I need an excuse to talk Disney to you or anything haha!

Though I’m centring this post around Walt Disney World travel, these essentials would pretty much be good to go for any upcoming trip you’ve got, but the more magical the better if you ask me!

Extra memory - I’ve upped my SD card size in my camera, cleared my phone to almost factory settings and have packed a spare SD card just in case too. I get super snap happy whenever I go away, but even more so on a Disney trip! I don’t want to have to worry about trying to rapidly delete pictures to make more room to take new ones, so some extra memory was the easiest option.

Extra charge - I’ve mentioned it a million times, but my portable charger for my phone and camera has been a lifesaver since the day I bought it, so it will be journeying across the Atlantic with me. I can’t think of anything worse than being out and about in the parks and having to fret about charging up! 

Less is more - I always travel with a next to empty suitcase as I just love my shopping out in the states! I’ve got my shorts, my tees, my bikini and my flip flops, and that's about it! I plan on starting my Christmas shopping out there this year so I’m going to need plenty of room to bring back all those goodies as well as a couple of treats for myself!

Costumes - OK this is probably more Disney related than regular travel related but we are hitting up the Halloween night at the Magic Kingdom during our trip and how could I not dress up? It’s not often the adults get to dress up around Disney so I’m not going to let the opportunity pass me by! I’ve done it once before and it was so much fun!

Laundry Bag - boring! but essential! Like I said, I don’t take a lot of clothes so I will do a couple of trips to the laundry room over the trip. It just means I can pack less - bring back more! More often than not I jump in the pool every night, so throwing a load of washing in whilst I go for a swim is no biggie!

Extra snacks - yes, I will buy a ton of food out there, but I usually take along some mini cereals, cereal bars, sweets, that kind of thing. They're super handy to have in the room, especially if I just want to grab something quick before heading out to the park, it saves me a little $$$ that I can spend on other things, and they make for great, cheap, park snacks too. 

Sunscreen for the face - I always take a separate sunscreen for my face as regular sunscreen just does not agree with my face! I’ve been playing around with a couple of samples and think I’ve found the right one for this trip! Watch this space!

Food bags - you know those little plastic bags you split your meats into, or save leftovers in? That kinda of thing? I always take a couple of the resealable ones out with me for a couple of reasons. They great for keeping snacks in, and even better for grouping together certain things in my park bag for easy access and pulling out. They’re also ideal for storing frozen towels in for those really hot days, making great little ice pack style devices. You just know I learnt about this off Pinterest don’t you?

Water Bottle - I always take a reusable water bottle with me, it saves me an absolute fortune in the parks, it's ridiculous how much they can charge for water! You can get water throughout the park from fountains and ice for free from any beverage station. I’m not being tight I’m just being practical - I’d rather spend that money on a couple of cocktails to wind down with in the evening!

Playing Cards - because what trip doesn’t as for them? There’s nothing like chilling out in the evening with a couple of drinks and some card games. it’s a great way to unwind and have a laugh with everyone. It’s also an instant bordem buster on the plane too!

Chewing gum - nowhere on Disney property will you be able to buy chewy! Not at all, nothing even close to it. They flat out don’t sell it, in a bid to keep the park clean and clear. So if you want any, you need to bring it in yourself. Or bring mints (though you can buy those in the parks). I know I’ll be popping a few packets in!

Waterproof/poncho - Even though I’m in the sunshine state there’s still the occasional shower that can catch you out in the afternoon and there're some amazing water rides that I just love to go on! I don’t mind getting drenched but sometimes it can take forever to dry off and the last thing I want is to feel all gross and uncomfortable in the parks! Ponchos are great for the hotter days when a quick storm catches you, or for throwing yourself down the log flume, and a really light waterproof is ideal when the weather takes a turn for much longer, especially in the evening when you still want to go out and have fun but not get drenched!






Wednesday, 28 September 2016

*The Spa @ Knowsley

the spa knowsley review


I grew up in Knowsley, and on the site of my old high school, they have built Knowsley Leisure and Culture Park. A multi-million-pound building, it’s got swimming pools, sports courts, a gym, a cafe, all those leisure centre type things - what I wasn’t expecting it to have was a very tranquil and serene spa just upstairs. The Spa at Knowsley invited me down for the day, and who am I to say no to a little mid-week pamper session?

the spa knowsley review


After being greeted and seated in the enchanting relaxation room, I was already starting to feel chilled out - but then came the other bloggers, the fluffy robes, the slippers and the fun. After a quick change and a talk about what the Spa was all about and the treatments on offer, we split into two groups for the day. My lovely little group; Emmi, Codie and myself, all kicked our chairs right back, got comfy and started with an in-depth aromatherapy facial with the beautiful Hayley. 

Aromaworks is a new brand to me, and Hayley took us through a step by step deep cleanse, pointing out our pressure points and the most relaxing way to take the day off. I swear I could have dozed off right there in the chair! Of all the products we used, the purity face cleanser was a firm favourite, my skin felt so clean and soft but without feeling tight or overworked. I’ve always been skeptical about double cleansing but Hayley took the time to explain how it can be super beneficial to our skin, how the second time around our skin is really absorbing all the nutrients from the cleanser. Our facial 101 continued with the purity face toner which was a real treat for my skin as I never usually use a toner at home - my skin didn’t sting or burn, it just felt soft and fresh. Did you know, you’re suppose to use damp cotton pads to apply your toner? It makes a huge difference!

the spa knowsley review


With our faces well and truly taken care of, and our relax-o-meters well on their way to the green, we popped into one of the treatment rooms to discover Crystal Clear microdermabrasion. I have always been terrified at the thought of microdermabrasion. I’ve always imagined it to be like sandblasting your face, and how that’s appealing or even good for your skin is beyond me! I admit. I got it very wrong. The Crystal Clear microdermabrasion gently exfoliates the outer layers of the skin, improving texture, fading scarring, and reducing fine lines and wrinkles. And it doesn’t feel like sandblasting at all! The crystals are such a fine sand, that feels unusually soft. The machine itself feels more like a vacuum on the face than anything else! It’s a very strange sensation but oddly soothing!

the spa knowsley review


A break for lunch, a bloggers catch up, then it was on to the second part of out Spa journey - the thermal spa - this was what I’d been most looking forward to! I’m such a water baby and I knew there was a hot tub around there somewhere waiting for me! We popped down to the thermal spa, a superb space with three experiences to be had; sauna, steam, and jacuzzi. After picking out a delicious vanilla and coconut scrub, we started off in the sauna! I’ve never been in a sauna before and it was unreal! It was hot - and that wasn’t just because of the gorgeous bloggers sitting inside it! After quickly working up a sweat we hoped out, jumped under the shower, then took a seat in the steam room. This was more like it! As nice as the sauna was, I personally found the steam room much more comfortable so we hung out in there for quite some time! Eventually, we left and jumped under the showers, this time with our Lycon scrubs in hand and really gave our skin a good seeing to before rinsing off and jumping in the hot tub!

the spa knowsley review


Talk about the perfect end to the day! I can’t remember the last time I felt so relaxed! From start to finish, Hayley and the rest of the team had looked after us like superstars, nothing was too much for them and they shared some wonderful beauty and skincare knowledge with us throughout the day. If this is the magic they can weave from a facial and a thermal spa, imagine what they can do when they really get their hands on you!

the spa knowsley review


The Spa is such a hidden gem, there really is nothing else quite like it in the area. Treatments are available at all levels, making it a real affordable, but still, luxurious spa, with a wide range of packages and treatments personally tailored to the individual. I still can’t believe this is just up the road from my Mums, so I already know I’m going to be stopping by again and again! I’ve got my eye on a hot stones massage and another trip to that thermal spa for sure! 

the spa knowsley review






Thursday, 22 September 2016

Currently Watching 5#

what to watch on tv


The nights are getting darker, colder, and I'm finding myself curled up on the couch under more and more blankets with more and more candles being lit by the night, so of course, I've been getting through a fair bit of TV. Let's have a look at what the remote's been landing on lately!


Million Dollar Princesses

I am obsessed with anything to do with aristocracy, high society, Royals, court drama and scandal, the life and times of the rich, the glamorous and the scandalous that have come before us. I’ve been loving this look at the rather rich and rambunctious American princesses who married into English titles, had their hearts broken, who broke conventional society rules and who paved the way for all those who came after them. 

Mr.Robot S2

I’ve just finished season 2 and it was just as amazing as season 1. I’m not even going to pretend like I know what happened throughout most of the latest season but it had me enthralled from episode 1 and it’s nice to see them keep moving forward, with complex character development and a surreal journey into the characters psyche that has you questioning everything you’ve seen them do for 2 seasons!

Gotham S2

Hands down, season 2 is better than season 1 - and I really enjoyed the first season but the villans have stolen the show! I still can’t quite get my head around Ben McKenzie as Jim Gordon, I mean I love him and it works, but he will forever be my Ryan Atwood!

Gilmore Girls

Well, who isn’t watching this now it’s made a 7 season appearance on Netflix? I remember watching the odd episode with my Mum years ago, she was a huge fan and she would watch so many I could never catch up! It feels like the perfect on the couch with a brew kind of show that just gives me all the feels.

Great British Bake Off

I can’t watch a single episode without a cake of some sort (preferably themed to match the theme that week) in one hand, and a brew in the other. It just has to be done. I did plan on baking along this year but well, that just hasn’t happened! I am itching to get baking again though so you might get lucky and see a few Bake Off inspired bakes appearing on Instagram!

American Horror S6 - Roanoke

Eeeek!! I am in love with this show and have been since season 1, but when I realised what season 6 was going to be based on - OH I hope it’s going to be as good, if not better than Coven, which has been my favourite season by far! I love the whole mystery and conspiracy around Roanoke so I can’t wait to see their terrifying take on it!

Victoria

Remember how I said I love things to do with the monarchy, Royals, the courts etc? I do love a good period drama and I’ve been loving ITV’s Victoria. I find her a fascinating monarch and I am surprised by how much I like Jenna Coleman as Victoria, though she hasn’t quite beat Emily Blunts portrayal just yet!






Wednesday, 21 September 2016

MOA Aphrodite Facial Oil

moa aphrodite facial oil review



If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a million times. But using oils on oily skin has been one of my biggest beauty discoveries in years. The difference this has made to my skins overall appearance, condition, acne and more is astounding. So yay oils. And yay for finding a very English, organic, facial oil with the prettiest packaging you might see today. Yay, for MOA - Magic Organic Apothecary. 

I discovered MOA way back at NW Meet 2.0, there was a snazzy little gift set on offer for the raffle, which I failed to win, but a full sized bottle of the Aphrodite Facial oil in my goodie bag. The packaging instantly strikes you as being crafted to be something beautiful, not something you tear up to get to the goodies inside. Who doesn’t want to be a goddess? With glowing, healthy skin, and mermaid hair to boot? What can I say, I like a good package


moa aphrodite facial oil review


What’s inside is pretty darn special too. The pretty little brown glass bottle, looks very victorian which I love. But the oil inside is not to be missed. Rosehip; bursting with skin loving vitamins A and C, essential fatty acids and natural regenerative properties. Damask; for dry, sensitive, red and blemished skin. Organic Yarrow; for even skin tone, and marshmallow extract; for soothing and calming both inside and out. 

The oil itself feels quite thick and greasy but a little goes a really long way. After cleansing, I apply it to slightly damp skin, patting it around the face, neck and d├ęcolletage area. My skin looks super shiny for about 15-20 minutes, as the oil is absorbed into the skin. A very soft, slightly greasy residue is left behind but as I’m only using it before bed, this doesn’t bother me. It smells wonderful and I’ve got into such a routine with this little beauty that I am instantly ready for bed whenever I smell it’s heady rose scent. In the morning, my skin looks bright and vibrant but not excessively oily. It feels smooth to the touch and any blemishes that might have been cropping up look reduced and faded. 


moa aphrodite facial oil review


I’ve slowly been switching my beauty products over to more organic, homegrown versions and the MOA facial oil has shot to the top of my must-have list. One 30ml bottle is lasting me months, but I can see it being an instant repurchase when it eventually runs out! If you have dry, or blemish prone skin, using this twice a day would be ideal. As my skin is in a pretty happy place right now, once a day works wonders - and if I stop using it for a couple of days I really do see a difference, especially in redness and irritation! 

I’ve got my eye on their Green Balm next, I can only see it working in perfect harmony with the Aphrodite Facial Oil.


moa aphrodite facial oil review


How do you feel about facial oils?

Until next time,




Tuesday, 20 September 2016

Renting: 6 things I hate about renting!

problems with renting in the uk


I’ve been living in my lovely rented apartment in the centre of the city for over 2 1/2 years now. As much as I love this place we’ve made home, there are a couple of things about renting that really get on my nerves. Here're a few things about renting that really bother me.

Nothing is mine

We purposefully chose a furnished place because we just about had the money for the deposit, let alone a couch and a coffee table. We picked up a couple of things, like lampshades, rugs, artwork, throws etc to put our own stamp on the place but all of the big things, don’t belong to us. And now they’re annoying me. They’re not what I would pick, they’re showing signs of wear and tear that I can’t do anything about, and every cup ring stain and spilled red wine sends me into a panic - because it’s not mine, it’s someone else’s

Decorating is not my decision.

Everything is white walls, beige floors. It's so impersonal. Easy to manage, neutral, and we do have permission to redecorate as long as we put it back to white and beige when we pack up and leave - but that’s just too much hassle for my liking. I’m not saying I want red walls and purple carpets, but a feature wall here, maybe a nice dark wood floor there - it’d be nice for the time being but the cost and time of changing everything only to have to change it back again is not worth it. 

Permission isn’t always granted.

It’s like being back living with your parents, needing to ask permission for everything. If we want to get rid of something, replace something, if we need someone to look at the toilet because it’s making a funny noise - we need permission. We have to go through the agent, who goes through the landlord, who goes back through the agent who lets us know the answer. And it’s not always as quick as reading that sentence. 

The worry.

A scratch here, a nick there, a suspicious looking stain that I can’t quite remember if it was there when we moved in or not. It all makes me worry. It could all make the difference between getting our deposit back or not at all. And that was one blood, sweat and tears deposit that I would quite like back, thank you very much. 

Inspections.

A couple of times a year, I clean like the queen is coming for tea. When the agents come to inspect, it’s scarier than when the parents come round for a brew. We keep the place in exceptional condition if I’m honest, it’s always clean and tidy, Good Housekeeping would be proud (most of the time). But when the agents come to visit, I don’t know, I get so nervous that they will white glove the top of the door frames and fine us for every dust bunny they find. We’ve never failed an inspection yet, but it’s still nerve-wracking. 

It’s all going nowhere.

The age old argument between buying and renting - with renting, your money is generally going nowhere and at the end of the contract, well, physically you have nothing to show for it. No walls, roof, picket fence or garden green. Nada. Nothing. Zip. You pack up, leave the couch that isn’t your behind, and move on to the next place, to another couch that isn’t yours. 

So the above makes me sound like a right negative nelly, but it’s not all doom and gloom, there are some pretty awesome benefits to renting, and I love our little home, but there’s defiantly a few things I wish we could improve on! 

Do you love or loathe renting?

Until next time, 



Monday, 19 September 2016

The time I got 'done' for underage alcohol sales

underage alcohol sales


What feels like a million years ago, ok, it was 10…but I hate how I can say that now…I worked on checkouts in a supermarket, and it was all fun and games until I accidentally got caught selling alcohol to an underage kid…bet you want to hear that story now don’t you? 

Go on, grab a brew, or a vino, and make yourself comfortable, I’ll wait.

Ready?

Ok!

So, there I was, 18 years old on a checkout, with about 15 minutes to go on a Friday late shift. Back then, the policy for selling alcohol was think 21 - if the customer didn’t look at least 21 then you had to ask them for proof of age. OH, the stories I could tell you about the cock and bull kids would come up with to try and convince me they were old enough - but we’ll save that for another time. These days, the policy is think 25, but have you seen some 16-year-olds? The look older than me and I’m almost 30!

So there I am, almost on my last customer of the night, and these two girls come long, looking a helluva lot older than my innocent 18-year-old self, buying nothing but a bottle of wine. Hand on heart, these girls looked a lot older than me, so it didn’t even dawn on me to question how old they were. Mistake. I served them, packed their bag, sent them on their way, closed up my till and went home. Job done. 

The next day I get dragged into the office at the very start of my shift, thinking it’s one of those routine questionings about something and nothing, but no. Turns out, as I had left my check out two officers from trading standards had come into the store to arrest me for underage alcohol sales. I don’t know how it is now, but back then they could put you in handcuffs and take you out for questioning. (It happened about a year later to another colleague and they actually walked her through the store in handcuffs). Me. Me in handcuffs. But I hadn’t done anything wrong…had I?

I was pulled up in front of every manager the store could find, questioned about the sale over and over again. This was no routine check, no, thanks to my wonderful luck this was the check were trading standards wanted to threaten the stores' alcohol license and make an example out of me to others. You couldn’t have picked anyone better when you think about it; clean record, minimum sickness, never late, always working extra, I was a right goodie-two-shoes and they were going to take me down. 

I cried. I cried so much. The store managers continued to question me shift after shift, I’ve never felt so bad in my life. At no point did they tell me to take union representation in with me, they even had a lawyer question me. But that wasn’t the scariest part. No. The scariest part was having to go to the police station and give my statement. I took my parents, I dressed demurely, spoke politely and protested that these girls looked older than me so of course, I served them. I apologised profusely. They started talking about records, CRB checks, how because I was 18 this would all follow me for a long ass time

underage alcohol sales


I cried. One bloody mistake, one bottle of wine and now I was going to have a mark against my name. At that point, I wanted to be a teacher, and when they asked me about future plans they said this little scratch against my name could make that all very difficult. 

My store didn’t want to know, they didn’t want to help. They were too busy saving their own license to bother with me, as long as what I said went in their favour, they didn’t care about much else. When the union finally got wind of what was going on they went ballistic! I should have had representation from day one, I should never have talked to the store's lawyer alone. They’d sold me out, hook, line, and sinker, and now the union was desperately trying to salvage something to make a case for me. 

I had to get a lawyer. I still walk past what was the lawyer's office almost every day now, and I can still remember how scary it felt walking in there, 18 years old, having made one stupid mistake. I knew people my age who had done much worse but now, I was being dragged through the thorn bushes over one bottle of wine

This all went on for months. I wanted to quit my job, I looked elsewhere but nothing came up. I managed to get transferred to a different department but still, the case went on. Still, I had to answer questions - and I’m talking over 6 months down the line now since the initial thing had happened. Could I remember if she had a pink coat on? Was her hair in plaits, didn’t that give her age away? Did she smile at me? Did she pay with a £10 or £20 note? Over and over and over again. 

Then, I got lucky. Seriously lucky. Everything went quiet. The questions stopped. The letters stopped. We phoned the lawyer who said he hadn’t heard anything for a couple of weeks. So we phoned trading standards; ‘Oh hi, so I’m the girl getting done for underage sales, any idea when you’re going to charge me or something?’. I asked the store managers, who looked at me blankly like the last several months hadn’t happened. 

The case had been thrown out

Turns out, after the initial sale and charge, they only had a certain amount of time to prosecute the store, and me. I want to say 6 months but it might have been longer. The person originally in charge of this particular case had left, and they had left their job in a complete mess. Whoever had taken over it had taken so long to get through said mess that by the time they came upon my case, it was too late to do anything with it, so into the shredder it went. 

Shredded. Gone. No scratch. No big dirty mark against my name. Nothing. 

It was over. And that was that.

If you work somewhere with rules, regulations, sales restrictions etc, take them seriously. Take them too seriously. I pretty much asked everyone after this for ID when buying alcohol, unless they were on zimmer frames. Asking for ID is nothing to be embarrassed about and those who are of age or older, genuinely love to be asked, I know I do! It’s those who kick up a fuss, who call you fit to burn for not selling them their crate that clearly has something to hide. 5 minutes of them moaning at you is well worth it compared to the alternative. 

I made a mistake but I got lucky in the end and that doesn't happen every day. 

Have you ever made a really stupid mistake at work?

Until next time,




Friday, 16 September 2016

Walt Disney World 2016 - Bucket List

walt disney world bucket list


With only a mere twenty days to go until I’m back in the land of the magic, I figured it was worth putting together a bit of a Disney World bucket list of just a few of the things I really want to do this trip! I love putting together these lists for special occasions and trips, then seeing how many I actually end up ticking off! So, let’s get on with it shall we!

Buy a pair of Mouse Ears, - Considering I’ve been to WDW umpteen times in the past, I’ve never actually bought myself a pair of ears! I feel like I’m missing some right of passage here, so I’ll be on the hunt for the perfect pair!

Conquer Summit Plummet - a 120ft, 60mph, 3rd tallest and fastest free-fall water slide in the world - this bad boy has been my nemesis every since my first trip well over 10 years ago, and I have chickened out so many times! I need to conquer this slide - maybe if someone promises me a gin or two at the bottom? 

Have the best birthday ever - Not exactly a hard one when I get to spend my 29th birthday in the Magic Kingdom! I’d say this is a pretty damn fine way to kick off the last year of my twenties - it’s going to be epic!

Monorail cake and bar crawl  - The monorail passes through three stunning resorts, each with their own bars and lounges that have speciality cocktails and I’m pretty sure, a speciality cake or two in the food court too! I can’t think of a better way to relax after the hustle and bustle of a day at the parks!

Eat and drink my way around the World - Epcot’s International Food and Wine festival will be in full swing when we land, so I can’t wait to tackle the treats on offer from over 30 international kiosks! I’ve been before and the atmosphere is amazing, but I’ve never quite managed to eat or drink something at every kiosk! Will this year be my year? 

Tackle the Hidden Mickey field book - this one depends on if I buy the book or not, I feel like it’s something I should have done a million years ago and completed over the trips. It’s the Mr’s first trip to the magic and he loves to win so I think challenging him to find the hidden Mickey’s before me would be a right laugh - and make for some cute Instagram shots!

Go to Jellyrolls - Two guys, two pianos, only one winner. I’ve heard amazing things about this place and would love to see it for myself! 

Experience Characters in Flight - in the past, whenever I’ve gone to do this air balloon ride, the weather a million miles away has meant the hot air balloon gets grounded and there’s no flying for Saloca. Every. Time. Please let this year be my year!

Eat Funnel Cake - I don’t care how sickly sweet everyone says it is, I have to have one simply because I never have. And it’s food. And it’s me. 

See the Goodnight Kiss - Once the park has closed and the majority of guest have left the Magic Kingdom, the castle does something a little special and I’ve never seen it, so I’ll hang back and hide in the loo’s if I have to! I want my kiss goodnight!

Get a balloon - OK, so I want a picture holding all the balloons, because that’s just hella cute, but then I want one too, because, well, why not? I’ve never had one! Maybe I’ll do this on my birthday!

Try a Dole Whip - There seems to be a cult around these Dole Whips, and if something is good enough to have a t-shirt made about it, then it’s got to be good enough to eat. Pineapple. Ice cream. Yup, I think I’m going to love it!

Keep a daily scrapbook/journal - I’ve tried this on so many trips past, even none Disney ones and for some reason, I get a couple of days in, and the journalling just stops, I miss a few days, then I can’t catch up so the entire thing gets scrapped until I’m on the way home! I’m looking for a fun, creative but quick way to journal the trip - got an idea?


Trust me, the list doesn’t stop there, but right now, they’re top of the to-do list! 

What are some of your Walt Disney World bucket list must do's for your next trip?

Until next time,






Thursday, 15 September 2016

Getting your rent deposit back!

how to get your rent deposit back


I’ve seen so  many people lugging boxes through town lately. Bin bags piled high in trolleys, teetering boxes on dollies, unsteady hands around heavy loads and a ridiculous amount of unwanted furniture chucked in the communal waste area (but that’s another blog post!). Everyone’s moving in or moving out, and it’s not just the students! If you’ve just moved into a rented place, signed on the dotted tenant's line, chances are you’ve put down a pretty hefty deposit - so, how do you guarantee to get your deposit back?

I’m going to make an ass of you and me, and assume (see what I did there?) you’ve read the small print, you’ve got the grown ups to go over the paperwork, you’ve checked what scheme your deposit is secured under and you’ve got an idea of what that scheme entails. So, with all the important stuff taken care of, it’s all down to you to get your deposit back!

Inventory

Before you moved in, an inventory should have been taken of the property, noting any and all furniture it contained that belongs to the landlord, and any breakages, marks, scuffs, chips, cracks, that occurred before you took control of the property. Go over this with a fine-tooth comb. Then get someone sensible to go over it too. Make sure everything that's in there is in the residence before you sign anything. Always get permission to remove anything on that inventory from the property. Example, when I moved in, 1 broken chair and 1 broken mirror were logged in the inventory, even though the chair would have collapsed under me if I sat on it, I still had to get permission to chuck it out. So I did, and I had the inventory amended. I keep the original inventory safe and whenever we have a clear out, I check it to make sure I’m not chucking a frying pan that I’ve forgotten isn’t actually mine. 

Decorating

Find out how your landlord feels about your colour scheme. You might like everything post box red with silver accents, but your landlord might not be too happy with how many coats of magnolia that will take to go over when you eventually move out. Most landlords are happy for you to decorate, as long as you leave the residence exactly how you found it. So just keep in mind, whatever you change, you will have to change back. Personally, we just went over the magnolia to freshen the place up and have used physical objects to put our own stamp on the place instead of decorating the walls. I don’t want to have to spend money putting it all back to how it was originally when I’m trying to save money and get my deposit back before I move out!

And speaking of decorating…

If you do decide to stick things on the walls, don’t go making all kinds of holes in them. This will just be a bugger to cover up when you leave, especially if you’re on a short term lease! Polyfiller, paint, effort. No thanks. It’s best to use those adhesive strips that cost a title bit more than a hook and nail, but leave no trace behind when you take them down! Same goes for those little hooks you've put on the back of the bathroom door for your housecoat - get the easy to remove ones! Those cheap adhesive pads are ridiculously hard to remove!

Keep all the paperwork

Get yourself a really cute ring binder or box file and keep every scrap of paperwork that every crosses your palm with regards to the property! Keeping it in some sort of order is a great idea, but even if you just sling it in the box and deal with it at a late date, just make sure you have a note for everything. Repair orders, inventory updates, receipts for anything you’ve had to replace etc. Basically, if it’s to do with the residence - wack it in the folder, you never know what you might end up needing to get your deposit back!

Use common sense!

I can’t believe how many people I know who rent who tell me they don’t keep on top of things like cleaning out the dryer filters, keeping the ovens clean, cleaning vent filters etc. All of this is actually the tenant's responsibility. I know how it feels when nothing feels like it’s yours (that’s another post), but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t look after it like it is. Think of it as good practice for when you buy your own washer/dryer, or how you’ll keep your not-bought-in-the-sale sofa in good knick in the future. Keep it clean, keep on top of general maintenance, and just look after the place in general. It’s always better to be in your letting agents or landlords good books!

I’m not saying your deposit is guaranteed, after all, I don’t know what you’re getting up to behind closed doors! As long as legally, everything is in order, and you keep the property in good condition, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t get your money back when it comes time to move out and move on. 

Have you ever struggled to get your rent deposit back?

Until next time, 




Wednesday, 14 September 2016

Garnier Micellar Oil-Infused Cleansing Water

garner oil infused micellar water review

So, the Mr has this theory. See, he thinks I am hooked on anything that has; independent, limited edition or infused in the title. Maybe I just like hitting up independent little cafes, opting for the limited edition flavours and maybe, just maybe, something infused is something a little special? I argued the toss with him, as you do, then promptly found Garnier's Micellar Oil-Infused cleansing water fall into my possession. 

I’m still not convinced I have this obsession he’s going on about, but one obsession I have to admit to is my obsession with micellar waters. One of my Ikea Alex drawers is pretty much devoted to these cleansing waters and a whole bunch of cotton pads to go with them! Micellar waters are just so versatile!

Garnier's Oil-Infused cleansing water for dry and sensitive skin aims to remove waterproof makeup, as well as cleansing, nourishing and moisturising your skin - no rinsing required. With a holiday coming up to somewhere rather sunny, I know I’ll be needing to freshen up through the day but I don’t want to have to keep washing my face with face wash as even the most moisturising can be drying when overused! 


garner oil infused micellar water review


Can I just say, the bottle looks like a lava lamp and I really shouldn’t admit how much time I’ve wasted just tipping the bottle around to make the oil float about? It looks less like a skincare product and more like it just needs some glitter and a lightbulb. Mesmerising. 

This cleansing water smells amazing, it’s very subtly fragranced, and it reminds me of parma violets! I’ve been using this as a too-early-to-be-out-of-bed pre-gym workout cleanser. Even though I’m off to get all sweaty, I still need to give my face a quick cleanse, removing all of the previous night's lotions and potions. Though the water feels greasy and looks greasy, it actually doesn’t leave any residue behind once it’s dried! 

When it comes to make-up removal, it does the job on mineral make-up without even trying. If anything, it seems to break the make-up down quicker than their original micellar water - and when it comes to waterproof mascara, I simply soak a pad and let it sit on my eye for 10-15 seconds, then gently wipe away. It probably removes around 60% first swipe! Winner! Even though my skin looks and feels pretty clean after cleansing with the water, when I’m taking off a full face of make-up I’ll still follow up with a thorough hot cloth cleanse. I still find traces of makeup on the cloth, so even though the micellar waters gets rid of most of my makeup (and we’re only talking mineral here) a tiny bit of something is still being left behind.

That being said, when it’s not removing make-up, I can’t fault it. It great pre and post workout for removing sweat and grime (sexy) and leaves me skin feeling super fresh. The downside, after using it for around two weeks I started to notice little whiteheads cropping up on my chin - boo! Seen as though this was the only new product in my regime, I couldn’t blame anything else. Let’s not forget, it is for dry and sensitive skin, whereas mine is oily, so that probably had more to do with those pesky whiteheads. For dry skin, I think this would be pretty amazing. 


garner oil infused micellar water review


Overall, I’m impressed. It seems to do a little more for my skin than your average cleansing water but for oily skin, it wouldn’t be my first choice! 

How often do you reach for the micellar water?

Until next time,




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