Getting Dressed Up with JD Williams – review

With the long weekends, come the spring and summer weddings. I had a wedding of some good friends to look forward to. With nothing to wear, JD Williams came to my rescue. I live in Jeans and tunic tops and was not sure where to start. JD Williams have a great selection of dresses with items from occasion wear to everyday.

I was very hopeful that I would find something suitable for a spring wedding. I started with a few searches in the JD Williams online store and found I could narrow down my search by colour, size, style and even occasion. I had wanted a mid length flare dress and had a shortlist of about three. One stood out and despite it being a label I was not familiar with, it kept drawing my attention. JD Williams did have brands I had heard of, and plenty of choice.

The Nightingales dress that I ordered was perfect, and I chose to add the matching shawl as you never know with British weather. I love the cotton content, and the fit was very good. JD Williams also have a large range of shoes, and many come in extra width sizes. The first pair that I chose were too big. It seems that maybe my feet are shrinking. The second pair fitted like a glove and I have been very impressed with the fit, and style. I chose flats as there is so much standing to be done at a wedding, not to mention the dancing.

I love my Nightingales dress from JD Williams, and am looking forward to taking it on holiday later this month. I think the fit is superb, and great quality for the price. The shoes have been much admired and despite not breaking them in before my friends big day there was no rubbing. I can honestly say that I have been very impressed by my first online dress shopping experience. If I’m lucky enough to be invited to more weddings I know where I will be looking first.

Disclaimer I was sent these items in return for an honest review, the words are my own and have not been altered

 

Love the Sales

Love the sales is a website for people who love a bargain, or like me who don’t buy clothes unless they are on sale! I never seem to have the time to spend money on my clothes so tend to pick up bits and pieces as I see them. I was interested to find out more about the Love the Sales website, and see if I could find something in the Vera Moda Sale.

Using the website is easy, you don’t need an account and it isn’t a shop, you simply register an email, then fill in as much information or as little as you like. You can add your favourite labels and stores, with not just clothes but home and garden and pretty much everything in between. I thought about getting the boy something new, but he has more clothes than he wears, so instead thought I would treat myself.

love the sales

Love the Sales was easy to use, and I soon found my way around, with some great bargains to be had. I live in Jeans so first stop was a new pair of dark denim skinnies. Love the Sales allows you to search for colours, sizes, labels so you only see the items that are available currently. I quickly found the right size and decided to choose some summer tops to complement my new trousers.

vera modea love the sales

I chose a tunic sleeveless top with a high neck because I liked the pattern. A floaty summer tunic, plain green top and a rather nice cotton jumper for the chilly evenings. Because each item was on sale the total value of my clothing should have been £126.00 but cost just £58.00 saving me over 50%. Love the sales are not a shop so for each item you are redirected to order from a high street store or online retailer. Postage may be extra dependant on the store or collection options, but even taking this into account saving over 50% of the retail price is enough for me to keep my eyes peeled for more Love the Sales Bargains.

Via lovethesales

 

The Supermarket -Review

The Supermarket is a 1,000 piece puzzle, number 15 in the Best of British series from Ravensburger RRP £11.99.

The Supermarket is the first puzzle in the Best of British series that I have completed and I was surprised how much I enjoyed both the illustrative style and humour from the artist Geoff Tristram. He has produced a few other puzzles with Ravensburger including Number 14 in the series titled Fit 4 nothing Gym. There is certainly plenty to look at in this puzzle, and the boy enjoyed working out some of the supermarket puns and jokes on the signs contained within the CheapoSave store. I even managed to convince Dad Dragon to help me out with this one.

the supermarket

I found this puzzle was straight forward to complete in the traditional way of edges first. With the logos and signs being the next thing I completed. There are lots of bright colours to pick out and complete. With so much detail in the supermarket puzzle you will continue to notice new things even after some time completing the puzzle. There are details on the shelves, packets and puns everywhere you look. Our favourite was the Diet coke bottle ” contains nothing beneficial” This puzzle has been such fun not just to complete but to look at afterwards as some of the details too small on the box come to life in the puzzle itself.

supermarket puzzle

Bingo granny is also looking forward to completing this puzzle, as she worked in a large supermarket for many years so the jokes will be even more relevant to her. The Supermarket I am sure will be much-loved by the Best of British fans and shoppers alike!

supermarket from ravensburger

Visit the Ravensburger website for the rest of the puzzles in the series of click my affiliate link below to buy this puzzle online.

Disclaimer I was sent this puzzle in return for an honest review.

Five Black Friday Offers for Your Pets

petshop.co.uk
Everyone seems to have gone mad for Black Friday offers, and with millions of pounds due to be spent today you shouldn’t forget your pets. So while you are looking for your bargain TV, the people at PetShop.co.uk have put together five Black Friday offers for you!
Have a look at the offers available this weekend from www.PetShop.co.uk below:
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  1. First offer is a £10 voucher when you spend £100, so why not stock up on all your pet food, and even a few Christmas treats. (voucher will be e-mailed within 7 days of placing your order)
  2. Next is 20% off selected brands like James Wellbeloved, Royal Canin and Applaws.
  3. Pet Shop have an Extra £10 off all big bags of Hills Science Plan.
  4. The fourth offer is for 12 free trays when you buy big bags of Huntland or Country kitchen Dog food.
  5. Finally the fifth offer is for 35% off Yumove Joint Suppliment.
There are lots of other great offers on the Pet Shop website, and with free delivery on orders over £19.99 your pets will be very happy, as you save money this Black Friday.
Magic and Mischief have loved the goodies they received last year from the people at the Pet Shop, and I like to stock up so that I never have the mad dash to the shops for food. As you can see Mischief likes it when I shop online as it means she gets to stay in and chill, especially when its cold and wet outside!
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Chemist Direct everyday essentials and more

Chemist Direct are an online chemist and something I wouldn’t have considered using before now. I was excited to be given the chance to try them out, and with an online credit I was interested to see how far my money would go. I had the idea that I would see if I could get all my holiday travel essentials in one place from the Chemist Direct website. I was impressed with how easy it was to find everything on the site. There are different ways to navigate to your products, via suggestions, drop downs or the search bar. The website is super easy to use, and checkout was just as easy.

Chemist Direct are not just there for your winter medicines like cough syrup and cold remedy’s but have a vast range of your everyday essentials. The website has everything from shampoo, toothpaste and lip balm. As well as the type of products you expect from any high street Chemist. I was able to find all my family bathroom essentials, as well as a few treats and even tested out the non prescription medicines buy getting Dad’s Hay fever medication. The traffic light system means that it was easy for me to see when this part of my order had been accepted.

chemist direct

There are plenty of special offers on the Chemist Direct website, and the prices were very competitive. I was particularly impressed with the prices of the hay fever tables at less than £3 for 90 days. I was very impressed by the vast range of products with both named and own brands, I was able to get a few things for our holiday back in the summer including a family first aid kit which thankfully we didn’t need. Sea Bands for the ferry crossing, which were amazing! and Athletes foot spray which we never leave behind when there is a communal pool.

Chemist Direct also stock vitamin tablets for the boy, hand cream for me, and shampoo for Dad. The best part of the Chemist Direct service was the speed of Delivery. I ordered at the end of the week, and with e-mails keeping me updated my delivery was with me by the Monday morning.  Overall I will certainly be using Chemist Direct again as it was much easier than trying to get into town for my medicine cupboard top ups. There is even free delivery on orders over £40 or free next day delivery on larger orders.

Visit the Chemist Direct website for current offers, or follow them on Facebook, and Twitter.

Disclaimer we were given credit to spend in order to try out Chemist Directs service, the opinions remain our own and have not been altered.

 

 

 

 

Trolley Bags – Review and giveaway

This week it’s just about back to normal in the Dragon house (well as normal as its ever going to be!) This means back to the weekly shop, as I decided we couldn’t live on biscuits and chocolate any more!

Trolley Bags were there to help me out, and I have to say it’s not often that you see something that you think “Why didn’t someone think of that before?” Trolley Bags are a set of four coloured bags designed to fit perfectly in the trolley. Graded in size and shape to fit, and the perfect way to pack your shopping. If you use the supermarket self scan, then even better as you can pack as you shop. Trolley Bags are available from the Packing Sorted website at £16.99, which at first may seem pricey but I think great value for money if you work out the time they can save while shopping and the environmental impact plastic bags have on the planet.

trolley bags

I set of for my local supermarket, list in hand to see exactly how these bags could work for me. The four bags use a system of Velcro to keep them together and one problem I had was keeping them rolled up. They seemed bulky, but fitted on the back of the trolley while I shopped. At the checkout I simply unrolled the bags and slid them onto the trolley. The bars running through the bags support them on the sides of the trolley allowing a good size opening for each bag to be filled. At this point it is worth noting that you need to have the bags graded from orange at the back (bag 4) to blue at the front (bag 1). Because each bag is graded in height and size if you don’t you will have all sorts of problems!

I found the bags easy to pack, and they hold a large amount of shopping so you might find it best to put heavy items in the smaller bags (bag 1 and 2) otherwise the bags will be too heavy to lift. I whizzed through the checkout and out to my car. This was the only real problem I had with the bags having a very small car the bags wont fit in my boot. They were simple to lift in by un-fastening the Velcro and lifting into my floor well. If you have a big family car Trolley bags will be easy to lift and as they all connect I can imagine would stand easily and upright in your boot.

trolley bags in action

Overall I have been impressed with the quality and usability of the Trolley Bags. They were perfect for taking away the packing stress, when the shop checkout fills up as you load. They hold a good amount of shopping and are available to buy now from the website, if you would like the chance to win a set to try for yourself then why not enter my gleam app giveaway below.

Trolley Bags

Disclaimer: I was sent Trolley Bags to review, the words are my own and have not been altered.

Terms & Conditions:
The giveaway is open to the UK only
  • It is mandatory to leave a comment in the post comment section answering the question specified. Other tasks completed will gain additional entries. The winner will be checked to make sure they have both left a comment and completed the task for the winning entry.
  • Winner will be drawn by randomly after the competition closes at 23:59 on Monday 2nd February
  • The winner will be sent an e-mail to the e-mail address left at time of entry. The winner will need to reply to the e-mail within 7 days of the notification. Every effort will be made to contact the winner, but if no response is made within the 7 days a new winner will be chosen.
  • The prize details are stated at the top of the giveaway, and no alternatives will be offered.
  • The prize will be posted by the promoter, unfortunately I cannot be held responsible or replace missing parcels. Please contact me if there is a problem.
  • Please alow 28 days from notification for your prize to be sent out.
  • This competition is listed at: Win competitions at ThePrizeFinder.com and SuperLucky

Bank Holiday shopping with Morrisons

Being invited to do my Bank holiday shopping with Morrisons, as a #MorrisonsMum with Brit Mums was strangely exciting. Not least because I was given £80 to go and buy whatever I liked. So on Friday I set aside the time to go and experience the new “I’m Cheaper” pricing at my local Morrisons store.

We’ve cut the prices on over a thousand of your favourite products. Not temporary reductions or supermarket smoke and mirrors, these are new every day low prices on the things you buy every week. So you’ll notice the difference with every shop.

I was excited to see if this would indeed be true, and what sort of products would be reduced. Hopefully not just the junk food, but the everyday healthy basics.

morrisons

I have to say my experience started from the car park, where I was greeted by the parking and trolley attendant, who very cheerfully greeted me and wished me a good day. Buoyant that this was not going to be my normal quick midweek food dash I decided that I needed to experience all that Morrisons have to offer. Armed with my shopping list I set off for the entrance. It was clear from the start that there was a major campaign going on in store, as there were notices, posters and labels from outside the door and inside the store. I had decided as well as my weekly shop I was treating the family to some favourite treats, which would include a roast beef dinner complete with all the trimmings.

morrisons store

Starting in the fruit and veg I was greeted with the usual Morrisons offers and specials, it was lovely to choose some of the boys favourite fruits too. He loves raspberry’s and it was good to see that British strawberries have also just arrived in store. I like Morrisons fruit and veg, there is always a good choice, its fresh and is a good price. I noticed some price reductions here, but they were more evident further into the store.

I love the market street produce, and the fresh pizzas are good value, choosing your favourite toppings is bonus. The chilled cabinet had lots of the new “I’m cheaper” pricing and this continued with the ready meals. I had decided to test out the butchers knowledge of what cut of beef would be best for a roast meal for Sunday. I wasn’t disappointed, as he personally showed me which he would recommend and when he found the shelf empty told me to pop back and he would joint up a piece for me. I don’t normally choose from the butchers, but I will certainly do this again in the future as he was very knowledgeable.

morrisons shopping

Continuing through the store, I saw more pricing, and bought a range of premium and value products to try out. Treats for the boy and Dad M like ginger beer, and for me chocolate coated biscuits. The bakery department in my store is always busy, and this time I couldn’t find a brown loaf. The baker was quick to come to my rescue and happily sliced a fresh loaf for me. The only problem I had in store was locating the croissants, I walked right past them 3 times.

morrisons butchers

On the completion of my shop and before I hit the frozen isle I returned to the butchers where the butcher had prepared two joints of silverside for me to choose from. With a lovely piece of beef for £7.29 I was happy this would feed my family for a couple of meals. Shopping complete, I was interested to see if my costing was going to be about right. My total bill was just under £100, which with a large Sunday roast joint and the luxury bits I would have expected to be right, but after the special offer deductions the bill dropped to £92.57. I would have expected around £120 for this amount of shopping in another supermarket.

So to the meals!

Friday night is always curry night and with a pre prepared curry with two servings, rice, 2 nan and 2 onion baghi at £5.00 this costs just £1.66 per portion. I found mine on the reduced isle, and at £3.49 and plenty for 3 portions this dropped to £1.16 each. complete with ginger beer and the boy was very happy with Fridays dinner.

morrisons curry

Saturday, we had lots of gardening planned, with croissants and fresh raspberries for breakfast, 41p per person. Lunch for the boy was sushi, and I had been promising he could use his kit to see if it was as nice homemade as shop bought. We filled the sushi with smoked salmon, baby peppers and chilli at a cost of £1.07 per serving (not including sushi kit) was good value and something I will do again for the boy as a special treat. Dinner had to be quick and easy as we were late coming in from the garden. Pizza, and salad was lovely with the lettuce the boy has been growing and some more fresh Morrisons produce. I worked out this cost £1.10 per portion as there was enough left for lunch the next day.

morrisons saturday dinner

Sunday, breakfast was the rest of the raspberries and croissants. Lunch was bacon butties with fresh bread and bacon from the butchers counter. I always end up wasting bacon so being able to get the exact amount and for just £1.34 it worked out at just 79p per person great value!

morrisons sunday lunch

The Big Sunday Roast, was completed with a Rhubarb meringue pie, which I had baked from scratch. With all the veg, and roasties there was plenty left for dinner and lunch tomorrow. I costed each portion of out Roast dinner at £1.61 and was surprised at how much we had to eat for this. I would normally buy chicken as its cheaper, but I think beef will be a nice treat from now on. The rhubarb meringue pie cost £1.00 for the pastry, £2.00 for the rhubarb, orange 25p, cornflower 75p, I used homemade strawberry jam, and eggs bought earlier in the week. £4.35 for the whole pie which made 8 portions at 54p each it was a surprising success.

rhubarb pie

If you would like to make your own Rhubarb Meringue her is the recipe

You will need:

Pastry to bake into a base, or pre prepared pastry case.

75g strawberry jam, 600g rhubarb cut to 2cm pieces, 50g of caster sugar for rhubarb, and 175g for the meringue. Zest and juice of an orange, 25g cornflour, 3 large eggs separated.

Cook your rhubarb with sugar zest and half the orange juice. simmer for 10/15 minutes till soft, mix remaining juice and cornflour to past and add, heat and simmer till thickened. Cool the filling and prepare your pastry case by blind baking, and then spread a layer of jam on the base. Now add the rest of the jam, and stir in the egg yolks to the mixture. Bake for 15 minutes in a 170*c oven, meanwhile prepare the egg whites by whisking and adding the sugar slowly until you have soft peaks. spoon over your rhubarb mixture and bake for 15-20 minutes until golden. I found if you cut the pie hot it will disintegrate so is best cut cold.

Monday we spent some time plant shopping with lunch from some of the left overs, and then dinner on the beach, our Bank Holiday weekend was over. Back to the midweek rush of after school clubs and nights out, there will be lots of food left from my shop this week.

monday BBQ

I am very happy that my Morrisons Bank Holiday shop saved me about 10% compared to what I would usually spent. The savings were then used for some treats and luxury foods that I wouldn’t normally buy. I can safely say being a #MorrisonsMum for the weekend has been fun, and I now see my store in a new light. Well done to Morrisons for a friendly, and great value store.

Now if we can just have the side salad back on the café menu I could give you 10/10

Disclaimer, I was asked to shop at Morrisons as a #MorrisonsMum and to spend the £80 which was sent out to me, the opinions remain my own and have not been changed.

Next…Sale shopping

Next, Sale shopping, yes its 6am on Boxing Day and I will be up in the dark getting ready, usually quietly ready to leave for the shops. Ok, so the rest of my extended family think I am nuts, and they may well be right! But I do like a bargain.

I have been shopping at this time of the morning for the last 7 years, only twice a year but it has now become as much part of Christmas as the turkey itself. I have complete wardrobes of clothes for the boy, and am now buying a few age 12y. I have been caught out as his tastes change and angry birds are very much out, star wars is still in though!

Its time to treat myself, pick up the odd Christmas gift for 2014, and most importantly curtains! I had no idea how curtains could affect my sleep so much. There is something comforting when you can shut the world out with a thin piece of material. Being back in my bedroom is great after so long in the dining room. Curtains are at the top of my list, so watch out NEXT as here I come…

John Lewis Toy and Gift Ideas

With just two shopping weekends left until the biggest gift day of the year I know where I will be looking this weekend for my last minute gifts! John Lewis have a great selection available online from stocking fillers, to the big brands like LEGO which the boy loves so much. This is the LEGO Star Wars, Millennium Falcon set the boy will be enjoying this year, I think he will like it?

LEGO Millennium Falcoln

I have had very little time to browse the shops, and seem to have spent most of my time with hospital appointments for Dad M, or at school productions, rehearsals and after school clubs. So tonight while the boy is at his last fencing of the year, I will be sneaking off to my local John Lewis store for inspiration. Last year we started a tradition of buying a family game for the festive period. This proved to be good fun especially after our Christmas dinner as it was great to all play something new. This year I have chosen the classic, Cluedo, something I know the whole family will love, and I am sure the boy will grow to love too.

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I am always on the look out for interesting little stocking fillers or something just a bit unusual. So being able to browse online, to find what I want and then have it delivered has been invaluable. I like the website dropdowns which I find easy to use, especially being able to select age, gender or even how much I want to spend. This year I have to buy for a girl as we will be spending time with family and my niece for the first time. I don’t think I can go wrong with Disney Princesses, as everyone loves Disney!

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Anyone who knows me will know what a huge fan of John Lewis I am, and was almost the first in line when they opened the fab new store in Chichester. I think most of my large household appliances have come from them, including my soon to be delivered washing machine. I am always amazed at the staffs commitment and enthusiasm and will always recommend their unbeatable customer service to family and friends.

With the John Lewis never knowingly undersold promise, I know that I wont be paying out more than I need too, even if I find it cheaper after I have made my purchase. So good luck if you are going to brave the shops this weekend, I have just got to find my own Christmas gift, a new camera and I know where I will be starting.

Disclaimer this post is a sponsored post, all the opinions remain my own and have not been changed.