Thursday, 28 July 2011

Vandalising my Paula Rosa kitchen

I am very fortunate to live in a new build property, that I bought 2 years ago. When I moved in, everything was pristine, new carpets, new bathroom, new oven, freshly painted....but also very *shudder* beige.
I have put my stamp on most of the rooms with a feature wall, and nice decor, but have battled with the kitchen the most.

It's a lovely finish, with Paula Rosa cabinets and high gloss, but the colour "Lattecino" (which is actually a shiny beige colour) makes me feel a bit nauseous. The fact that my mother "Loves" the colour also indicates that it isn't quite the fresh feeling I've been going for throughout the flat. AB and I have agreed (he's moving in soon) that black cupboards would be a lot more appealing and less offensive, and also blend in to the open plan area a lot better.

 We had a false start decorating the cupboards with a roll of black adhesive vinyl meant for car decals. (my idea) Binbag chic, i.e crinkly shiny and cheap didn't really look right so we had to rip it off and go back to the drawing board. During a visit, the mother was indeed horrified by my plans to modify the cupboard doors, which made me want to do it even more!


After a rebellious trip to B&Q on my own (more to be revealed later) I found a great spray paint and thought I'd try that. The finish is perfect, flawless and classy and just what we were hoping for. So project cupboard door is well underway in the spare hours we have. The mother visited yesterday and is now in fact in awe of my handywork... (as usual, doubt first, congratulate after success is proven!)

 The spray paint I used was £7.98, I used 4 very thin coats letting each one dry first. It's called "Plasti-Kote Projekt Paint" in "Satin Super" finish ! can will do 3 - 4 doors.

Brighton C x

Wednesday, 27 July 2011

A little romantic gesture

 I've been awake since 6.30am due to noisy toerags outside my flat and building works. AB however sleeps through pretty much anything it seems, apart from my fidgeting and watching DVDs in bed. I've left him asleep for another hour while I get to working but I felt a bit bad that I've been waking him up so I've left him a little surprise.

The 'Mrs Whiller' name is a joke from holiday, we're not married and that's not my surname. Hopefully this will cheer him up again with a nice strong coffee made by me!

                               Brighton C x

Monday, 25 July 2011

Goodbye Amy Winehouse

When I heard about Amy Winehouse passing at the weekend, I didn't really know how to feel. I am very sad that someone the same age as me has struggled with alcohol for so long that it's led to her death. I'm really sad that another talented person has left us too soon. But I wasn't surprised. I had already began to feel sad at the loss of her music while Amy was still alive. I love her album Back to Black and had always hoped for some more music from her but it seemed unlikely.

Many of Amy's celebrity friends have commented that she can now rest in peace, and I guess this is the answer: she's  now finally at peace.

Brighton C x

Sunday, 24 July 2011

5 of the world's most expensive and outrageous spa treatments - Guest post

The therapeutic and holistic nature of the Spa has been soothing peoples’ ailments for thousands of years.  Indeed in the UK alone there are a number of Spa towns that are testament to the popularity of Spas in the Roman times and with the ever-increasing number of Spa break offerings in modern times spas are becoming big business.
To show you the extent some people will go to relax, here is a top 5 list of some of the most outrageous treatments on offer.

1 Evian bath at The Hotel Victor in Florida, USA
The Hotel Victor offers “the world’s most expensive bath” at a cool $5000. However, because you can only access the treatment by booking the Hotel’s penthouse, which is a further $6000 -totalling $11,000 dollar for a bath. But don’t worry; my research indicates the 350 gallons (that’s 1000 bottles) of Evian water used for the bath is heated up to your optimum temperature, so at least it’s a warm bath.

2 K Gold Facial – Using 24 karat gold
This treatment originates in Japan and now has offerings all over the world. The idea is that 24 karat gold leaves are applied to the face to form a mask, and the anti-aging properties gold contains help to reduce wrinkles and leave your skin feeling smooth and revitalised.
Compared to the Evian bath it is a snip at between £250-£450 per session.

3 Diamond Massage
This is a massage with a twist, a 1 million dollar twist to be precise. The massage involves real diamonds being placed along the spine, which are then massaged into the back. The procedure is supposed to relieve the body of electromagnetic toxins caused by mobiles and computers, I can’t help but wonder if it would work with pebble-dash, and with the price in the £25,000 region I may just try it!

4 Caviar Massage at La Prairie Spa New York
For me, this doesn’t sound at all pleasant. But looking further into the procedure I found that, at least on one positive note, there is no fishy smell that comes with the caviar. The caviar is said to contain an exfoliating property that helps to firm the skin and moisturise and will set you back around $450 for 150 minutes, which actually is not that steep in comparison to other treatments in this list.

5 Aroma-Listic Day Spa Pedicure
This may be the least expensive of the bunch at around £200, but it is the sheer nature of the treatment that brings it to the attention of this list. Having spent an hour on your toes the final treatment of the day is to slather white chocolate strawberry truffle all of your feet, for a further 50 minutes – for me, that seems like a waste of great truffle!
Some of these treatments are so outrageous you worry there is a demand for it, in fact, if you can take anything away from this it would be that some people have more money than sense!
Matthew loves spas, but only uses affordable spa vouchers or a cheap Spa break vouchers from his local offering. He is a keen swimmer and fitness guru and loves a gentle swim after a day at the spa.

If you can't afford these luxury and weird treatments, why not try some pampering at home with friends, with these lovely Avon products - cheap, cheerful and relaxing.... ahhhh

Saturday, 23 July 2011

Npower get it very, very wrong

I've hurt my neck this week so have had to stay away from the laptop to rest. But I just had to log on and let you all know that nPower have gone a bit crazy. They must be a bit confused with all these price hikes that are happening.

I've been having an ongoing debate with customer service over a £2873 bill. They have read the wrong meter and are trying to say that me, on my own, in my solar panel powered eco-friendly one bedroom flat uses 34 units per day. So of course I am debating this. I'm convinced they have the wrong meter details for my flat, so I've provided new readings and new details. From these new details, my recalculated bill is now £119,332.57 for 2 years electricity use. Now that really is a price hike.....

Brighton C x

Sunday, 17 July 2011

Brighton C on Habitat Going into Administration

My heart did sink a little when I heard that Habitat were going in to administration. I had always aspired to own a full Habitat crockery set, including tea cups and saucers, milk, jug, sugar bowl, butter dish... in one of their quirky retro inspired prints. But that was all it was - aspiration. I could never quite justify their prices for things that I don't really need when down the road almost identical products were on sale for 7 times less.

I happened to be in the shopping centre with my friend who wasn't aware of the latest retail catastrophy, and was excited by the thought of grabbing a 'tat bargain. After 10 minutes looking around at damaged lampshades, scratched tables and over priced clocks, I had to leave as claustrophobia set in. I hate shopping in town especially on Saturdays. I left him in the queue with a folding table and chairs that he could have bought £20 cheaper than the sale price in Argos.

I will miss you and your quirky crokery Habitat, but you're still not getting my hard earned cash.

Brighton C x




Tuesday, 12 July 2011

Golfing girl - Brighton C on trying golf for the first time

I was very lucky to take my summer holiday this year on a beautiful golf resort in Alicante, Spain. I booked the holiday here partly because of the luxurious accomodation, but also because AB loves golf and plays around 3 times per week, so I thought it would be a real treat for him to play abroad.

The golf club had good facilities, a driving range, pitch and putt practise area, buggies, a club house restaurant and bar and a beautiful course planted with palm trees, exotic flowers, water features, geese and mountains. The views were breath taking and AB said it was the nicest course he had ever played. As golf was rather expensive to play on such a nice course, we only booked a tee time for him. I was his glamorous caddie and buggy driver. That's not me in the picture of course. I'm told that pro golfers pay hot girls a lot of money to caddy for them, and I have respect for these girls as not only doing the have to keep in shape but also need to know which club to use and carry the heavy bag of clubs around 18 holes!

I was a bit nervous about driving the buggy at first, but after I got used to it, we had so much fun driving across the course over bumps and around trees. The buggy also provided welcome shade from the 32degree heat whilst we waited for players in fromt of us to finish the holes.

AB looked the part a bit more than I did, with his posh leather glove, pro shirt and golf shoes. I had trainers, cotton shorts, straw hat and a vest on like a true holiday maker. I was a little envious of the more experienced ladies who had smart tailored shorts, polo shirts and matching visors or cute pleated skirts.

Before starting on the course, we visited the driving range, where AB bought a bucket of practise balls and let me use his sandwich (sand wedge, apparently) He taught me how to swing and hit the ball. I had learnt from him at home and in the gym, as well as playing on the Wii fit but never tried swinging with a real club or ball. I found setting up my posture easy because I have good balance from yoga paractise. I found it difficult to firstly hit the ball (it's small!) and also swing my arms and body in a way it wasn't used to. My best shot was around 75 yards.

We then moved on to 'chipping' which was more difficult, but once I learnt the technique I enjoyed it. I've realised that learning golf takes a lot of practise and patience. I'd really like to have a go at a game, so am planning to visit a 9 hole casual course nearby with a friend very soon. I always thought golf was a bit boring, but now I can see the attraction. It's very relaxing as it takes time to stroll around the course, and also requires skill which is rewarded with achievement. I've definitely caught the golf bug.

Brighton C x

Saturday, 9 July 2011

One for the wall - Canvas prints from photos

This is my favourite picture from our holiday in Spain. It's the view from our balcony of the sunset behind the moutains. AB took it, although he knows less about photography than me (I know you can have a macro setting and that's about it!) I'm really pleased with how the colours and focus have come out and have decided I want to get a large canvas print of this photo as a lovely lasting memory of our holiday. I'm buyin mine for just £8.49 for an A3 print which is a major bargain! It's a very special limited offer from Grange Print. You can get yours here: http://b06751a2-9108-11e0-8677-0024e8696030.kgbdeals.co.uk/?id=31003

Enjoy choosing your favourite photos to print!

Brighton C x

Friday, 8 July 2011

Back from holiday - the first day hump!

I'm back from my wonderfully relaxing holiday in Spain where the weather was 32degrees plus every day, the Sangria was freely flowing and I had very little or nothing to do. I missed my blog while I was gone, but didn't have room in my luggage allowance for my laptop and think AB would have been a bit upset if I went off to sit inside and log on. I've got some catching up to do - so here's a taste of things to come...

Trying golf for the first time
Holiday piccies
Cosmetics review x 3
Spanish clothes shopping

Stay tuned, and if you want to ask me anything about my holiday or are going away and want some tips ask me in the comments :-)

Brighton C x

Saturday, 2 July 2011

Guest post #3 - Chocolate!

I'm off on my holidays this week, so while I'm away I've lined up an interesting guest post for you about chocolate - my mouth is watering!

Brighton C x

 
When people think about chocolate, they usually associate it with being unhealthy.  It’s filled with fat and sugar, is hard to put down and contains caffeine.  But is it really that bad for us?  Or could it possibly be the one of the healthiest dessert choices you could ever make? 

Most of the time, when we hear the word“chocolate,” we think of regular milk chocolate.  Hershey bars, Twix, Reese’s, Milky Way are popular treats made with milk chocolate.  Although these tasty treats are harmless if eaten in moderation, that usually isn’t the case.  Chocolate contains addictive properties because of the added sugar and caffeine, so we end up eating more than we planned.  The substances in chocolate can cause problems ranging from migraines to heart attacks, more the reason to avoid it.  The fat in milk chocolate comes from mainly saturated fat, the kind we need to avoid to maintain healthy hearts.  Consuming only three ounces of chocolate can put you over the daily recommended limit for saturated fat, one huge disadvantage.  Milk chocolate does not contain as many antioxidants as dark chocolate.  Because of this, the calories you eat from milk chocolate are empty.  They might make you feel good, but provide no nutritional benefit.

On the other hand, dark chocolate, a less popular, more antioxidant rich type can actually benefit your health in more than one way.  First of all, it contains antioxidants such as polyphenols that help to protect against heart disease.  They inhibit oxidation of LDL cholesterol so it cannot stick to artery walls.  They also prevent blood platelets from clumping together and causing atherosclerosis.  High blood pressure can also be reduced by polyphenols.  Studies have shown that chocolate can act as a blood thinner, similar to the actions of aspirin.  Although the fat content in dark chocolate is still high, these fats are actually beneficial.  The form of saturated fat, called stearic acid, has been shown to not increase blood cholesterol levels.  Instead, it acts more like monounsaturated fat which is important for body functions.  Other antioxidants that dark chocolates possess are flavanoids.  These beneficial substances are also good for the heart and protect against cancer causing free radicals.

Dark chocolate causes the brain to release “feel good” chemicals called endorphins and dopamine.  It also causes the release of serotonin, a chemical that reduces depression.  These facts  are the reasons why chocolate can be addictive.  Don’t worry, though.  If you limit yourself, you will not become addicted.  One plain, small bar of dark chocolate a day is enough to provide you with health benefits.
The best kind of chocolate to buy is all natural, or organic.  Choose the kinds with the least amount of sugar, being that the food industry adds most of the sugar into the food.  Try to avoid milk chocolate products because they are typically not the healthiest, and know that just because a candy bar is made with dark chocolate doesn’t mean it’s healthy.  Many of these candy bars have other substances in them, like caramel, nuts, etc… that compromise the nutritional benefit of the chocolate.
Now you know that chocolate isn’t as bad for you as you may have once thought.  You now have a healthy and tasty option for a dessert to dig into every single day.

Brianna Elliott is a regular contributor for PSCLife.com, a student at the University of Wisconsin - Stout, and last (but not least) a chocolate lover.  PSCLife.com is a website for the sweetest of health nuts...they are also one of the web's leading retailers of Ultra Jarro-Dophilus - a probiotic supplement designed for digestive balance and overall immune system functioning.