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Amanda2114

Amanda2114

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since 12/10/2006

68

Americana Inn, New York City 16/03/2010

Good base for your holiday

Americana Inn, New York City My friend and I recently went to New York for 5 nights and stayed at the Americana inn. We book it through Thomas Cook, and so had no direct dealings with the inn until we arrived in New York. The Inn was very easy to find when we arrived, just get the airport bus to Bryant Park and the hotel is about 2 blocks from there (really not far at all). The bus is only $15 and is a 20 minute journey, which is much cheaper than a taxi. Then from getting off the bus the hotel is only 2 blocks away. It is very close to Grand Central Station, Times Square, Bryant Park and The New York Public Library and there is a subway stop at Bryant park. Perfect location for all your sight seeing! It is a double door with buzzer, plus if you go up the lift or stairs you have to pass through reception so they can see who has come in, which is great for security. The staff were very friendly on arrive and there is a lift to get your bags to the room. It was very simple to check in and we were giving a city guide book from them and 2 keys. The room was clean on arrival and although the bathroom is shared, there was a sink in the room. The beds were comfy enough and although it was a little nosy we found we were so tired every night it didn't really matter. The views were nothing special from our room with the road and deli but we didn't expect a central view of the Empire State Building. There was a tv in the room,on the wall to save space, with some good comedy channels and a news channel ...

Bones (TV Series) 08/02/2010

Brillant show

Bones (TV Series) For absolutely ages my brother and his wife have been telling me that I have to start watching bones... so when I saw season 1 on offer at Asda about a month ago, I bought it.... and I am now hooked. I have watched season 1 and 2, and plan to buy season 3 this weekend. Bones is different, funny, gory, intense, witty, dramatic, and a show I am now addicted to. It ticked all the boxes for me: with brilliant characters and character development over the series, plot twists that you really aren't expecting and great stories. Bones is a crime drama about a forensic anthropologist (Temerance Brennan or "Bones") and her crime solving partner FBI special agent Seely Booth ("Booth"). The show is based on the booked by Kathy Reiches. Bones and Booth do their crime solving at the Jeffersonian Institute in Washington DC, they solve their crimes by Bones and her team examining the remains (bones) of the victim and establishing how, when and where they died - it is all very clever. I think the beginning of Bones is similar to the beginning of each House M.D episode, with us discovering the body. We then follow Bones and Booth as they investigate the case. It isn't all about the case through, through the series we learn more about each of the characters and their relationships develop with one another. So who is who?!? Temperance Brennan is played by Emily Deschanel and is known in the show as "Bones". Bones is very very clever, and is an expert at examining bones. She is also a ...

Channel 4 - Super Nanny 08/02/2010

Supernanny to the recue!

Channel 4 - Super Nanny Jo Frost is Supernanny, a very experienced Nanny who visits families who are having problems controlling their wayward, naughty children. It is shown on Channel 4 and E4 in the UK and I love it. It is filled with badly behaved children and usually clueless parents, who call in Jo to help them improve and hopefully stop their bad behaviour. The children are usually rude, disruptive, cheeky, violent and unruly, and it is often due to problems with the parents rather than with the children. The format of the show is very similar each week, there is a video with a family asking for help. Super-Jo then arrives, marching down the street in her business suit ready to sort out the family. She then observes for the day, and within 2 minutes of her arriving the kids and parents display the behaviour that needs help. There is then the parent meeting where Jo goes through the problems with the Mum and Dad and confronts them about the issues causing their children's behaviour. Jo then changes into more "fun" gear when she holds a family meeting where new rules are put into place, and reward charts are hung on the walls. She then spends about a week with the family (in the TV show it seems like a week, I have read that it is actually closer to a month, I just don't know how true this is), helping them put her techniques into practice (some of which we will go into later). Jo will then leave the families for a week to see how well they cope without her, usually they cope well at ...

Channel 4 - Friends 19/01/2010

They'll be there for you!

Channel 4 - Friends So no one told you it was gonna be this way...... Friends is a US TV show which became an international hit and made massive stars of the six main characters. You only have to hear the theme song intro and you know the show. The show finished 5 years ago yet is still shown every evening in the UK, which shows what a massive success it was. I love friends and own the entire series on DVD. It is set in New York, in an apartment complex and coffee shop just across from central park (the coffee shop is Central Perk). It was first broadcast in 1994 and the final episode was first aired on 6th May 2004. The show is about 6 twenty and then thirty something's, three guys - Chandler, Joey and Ross, and three gals - Monica, Rachel and Phoebe. We follow them through the trials and tribulations of their lives, with lots of comedy thrown in. Rachel Green Rachel is played by Jennifer Aniston, who comes into the show as a rich daddy's girl, fleeing from her wedding. Over the series Rachel's character develops into an independent mother, who works at Bloomingdales and Ralph Lauren. She is very pretty and has a complex relationship with Ross. Initially she lives with Monica, then Phoebe and in the end she and Joey make perfect roommates. She is fun-loving and pretty care free. Monica Gellar Monica is played by Courtney Cox, who is a neurotic chef, with a little ocd when it comes to cleaning. Monica is more serious then the other girls and often play "mother" to the group - looking ...

Scrubs 19/01/2010

Making Medicine Fun!

Scrubs Scrubs started off in 2001 with 3 nervous, funny interns joining Sacred heart hospital, and I have followed them ever since. We are currently on season 8 in the UK on E4. The main character in the show is JD - John Dorian, who is sadly leaving at the end of this season, I am not sure how well it will work without him, although over the years other characters have been developed and are just as key to the show as JD is. JD's internal thoughts narrative the show, although on occasion we have heard the thoughts of several other characters. Zach Braff is great as silly, lovable JD. JD's best friend and bromance (man friendship romance) is Chris Turk, who met JD at university. Turk is a surgeon and very quickly in the show meets head nurse - Carla, who he marries and has a child with. Turk is a little more manly than JD, but the interaction and relationship between the two is fantastic, and summed up beautiful in the number "guy love" in the musical episode. Turk is married to Carla, who has been at the hospital for years. They quickly fall in love, though she often plays second fiddle to JD and Turks relationship. She has a baby with Turk, Izzy, and she rules the hospital. Carla is best friends with Elliot, the third intern, who also has an on-off relationship with JD. Elliot is very neurotic, and is the whitest white girl you'll ever meet. She comes from a wealthy background and works hard to be taken seriously by her superiors and peers. Dr Cox is JD's mentor and the ...

Channel 4 - Dawson's Creek 22/12/2009

Sad its gone!

Channel 4 - Dawson's  Creek Before One Tree Hill, The OC and Gossip Girl came Dawson's Creek, the pioneering American teen drama that ran from 1998 to 2003. Set in Capeside Massachestts (a fictional American town) there are initially 4 main characters.... Dawson, Joey, Pacey and Jen. With Andy and Jack joining in the later series, and Audrey once they head off to university. The four talk as thought they are university scholars when really they begin the show as 15 year old high school students, but get past that and you have a really nice teen drama. Dawson Leery is played by James Van Der Beek - In the first few seasons Dawsons is the lead character, until they go off to college when it really becomes Joey's creek. Dawson is a film fanatic who idolises Steven Spielberg. He falls in love with the girl next door - Jen, and then with the girl down the creek - Joey, and is very close to his parents. He is a nice boy, who always does the right thing, and always tries to follow his dream of film making. Joey Potter is played by Katie Holmes - Joey is the tom boy next door, but stunningly beautiful. Joey is in love with her next door neighbour for years - Dawson, she grows a lot through the series and develops a unique relationship with Pacey, with the question of will she choose Pacey or Dawson being a reoccurring theme through the series. She is a nice girl, who has a bit of a wild side, is has a heart of gold. Pacey Witter is played by Joshua Jackson - Pacey is the bad boy, black sheep of his ...

Heroes 17/12/2009

The Heroes are here!

Heroes Heroes is American series about a group of normal people with supernatural powers, no two people have the same ability and now all abilities are good. We have had 3 seasons here in the UK and although it lost its way with the writers strike in Season 2, series 3 was just as brilliant as the first. You really do need to concentrate to see all the twists and turns in the third series but it is definitely work an hour of your undivided attention. Not all characters have abilities and not all of these with abilities (good or bad) used them to help people. There are a lot of special effects in the show and the heroes are constantly saving the world, which makes exciting viewing. I enjoy the way that all of the characters are interlinked, which becomes more apparent as the show continues. New characters are constantly being introduced by here are some of the main ones: Mohinder Suresh (Sendhil Ramamurthy) is following in his fathers footsteps and researching this genetic ability and helping the "heroes". He soon becomes jealous of his friends with abilities and feels left behind. He is a kind and caring man, but will his green eyed monster take over - I won't spoil it for you if you haven't seen the show! I do like Mohinder but he has become a little whiny in the last series. Peter Petrelli (Milo Ventimiglia) has been a main character since the beginning, he is the good guy, he just wants to use his ability to help as many people as possible. He often has to make tough ...

fpb.org 25/11/2009

Useful business resource!

fpb.org The company that I work for are members of the FPB, and having used the website numerous times and spoke to the advisers on the phone a few times when we needed help, I thought it was about time I wrote about them. The Forum of Private Business is a not-for-profit organisation who helps small businesses with every aspect of running a company successfully. There website www.fpb.org (which is my main source of contact with the FPB) is www.fpb.org and there are a number of different sections to it that I will discuss. Being a member of the FPB rather than just visiting the website gives us access to a number of different resources: Member helpline: I have called this helpline a few times and the staff has always been extremely helpful and friendly. They were available when we needed them and help us resolve the problem as quickly as possible. Business guides: I use these quite a lot, there are three business guides available - a credit control guide, an employment guide and a health and safety guide. The employment guide is brilliant and we refer to it regularly to help within the company. It is very easy to use and understand and we can always find the information we are looking for. The healthy and safety guide is another that I regularly use. This is an excellent guide to health and safety issues and we regularly refer to it. As with the employment guide it is extremely simply and easy to use, and it is easy to understand and find information. HR Templates: ...

Gatebeck Holiday Park, Cumbria 24/11/2009

Our New Holiday Home

Gatebeck Holiday Park, Cumbria We have recently bought a holiday lodge at Gatebeck holiday park on the outskirts of Kendal. It is in the perfect location to appreciate all of the surrounding natural beauty, as well as being close to shopping centres and markets while still enjoying the peace and tranquillity of the countryside. After viewing the complex and lodges, we decided to buy a lodge at this complex, as it was such a lovely place with so much surrounding nature. Along with my partner's parents we bought a 2 bedroom lodge, which we just loved after viewing. There is plenty of natural light through out the lodge and it is much more spacious than we ever imagined. It is such a beautiful holiday home and I am so happy with our decision to buy one. The lounge has an extremely comfortable feel and the place has central heating, as well as double glazing, to keep the place nice and cosy. The luxurious kitchen has a fridge, freezer, gas cooker and grill, plus the laminate flooring makes the place feel light and airy with lots of space. There is an onsite laundrette and dog paddock, which my in-laws love. Plus there are a lot of country walks and fishing spots close by, as well as Leighton Moss (RSPB site). Their website is: http://www.sllodges.co.uk/Gatebeck where you can find much more detailed park information. We stayed for the first time at our holiday lodge this summer and had a fantastic time, the staff were extremely helpful and friendly, as they had been in the past when we were ...

TrueBlood 04/11/2009

Not one for me!

TrueBlood I have seen all the Adverts, and heard about this award winning show everywhere I seem to turn over the last few weeks. After reading a lot of really positive reviews about True Blood, and with it billed as the grown up Buffy and Twlight, I was sold and purchased the season 1 box set, I got snuggled on the sofa that evening with a hot chocolate and biscuits (yes I am getting old I know) and was started the first episode.... The show follows the residents of Bon Temps, and our heroine Sookie Stackhouse, a telepathic waitress, and her Vampire friend Bill. A formula called Tru Blood has been developed in Japan which allow Vampires to live amongest Human, although these are many issues this raises for both the Vampires and humans. Some vampires do not want to stop drinking human blood, many live in the shadows of the community as they are not welcome and still seen as dangerous, and there is racism towards them. They also bring with them a new "Drug" which is called V and is their blood, which creates an underground world of dealing. Bill is the first Vampire to become a member of the Bon Temps community and with him come problems in a string of vicious murders across town, and Sookie's brother become the main suspect. Now I warn you because I didn't take the "adult" references too seriously, but there are a lot of graphic sex scenes in every episode and also the murders and vampires are not sugar coated like in Twilight or Buffy, they are brutal and grim. I have seem ...

Eco Self Tan 11/09/2009

Worth a shot!

Eco Self Tan Over the years I have tried a fair few fake tans, being extremely fair skinned and never tanning just burning I need some help to get that Bronzed look. One of the products I have tried is Ecotan. This can take a little while to get the hang of but once you do it is amazing and one of the better self tanning products I have tried. It doesn't mark clothes and dries in minutes, a great bonus - as I feel like a right numpty stood in my underwear not daring to touch anything while my fake tan dries. I got my ecotan from http://www.salonlines.co.uk/self-tanning-lotions/e co-tan/ for £17.95 for 2 500ml bottles of the Ecotan classic tan spray. (They are £11.95 for a single bottle). When I compared this to other sites the price was very competitive and reasonable. As with all fake tans the best way to apply is after a shower, having exfoliated and moisturised. my routine when putting on the fake tan is shower and exfoliate, towel dry and moisturise. Wait about half and hour for it to soak in. Spray away! Smooth it in and wash hands. The spray is colourless and so it is a little hard to tell where you have already been, but once you get the hang of it, this isn't too much of a problem. The colour is long lasting and even, it does tend to show the next morning and so results aren't instant, but fake tans never are. It does give a nice tan, not orangey like others can be.... but you do have to exfoliate to get a great colour, otherwise it can be a little uneven in places. ...

sportsshadesonline.com 11/09/2009

Love my new sunglasses!

sportsshadesonline.com I just received my new pair of Giorgio Armani sunglasses from Sports Shades Online and just had to write about my experience. I wear glasses so needed prescription lenses, after getting my glasses from specsavers at Christmas (my niece accidently snapped my others in half on boxing day and without a spare pair I just needed somewhere that could do them straight away). I did not want to get my sunglasses from there, I had problems with the lenses in my glasses warping and they had a limited range of sunglasses to choose from. I was chatting with one of my friend about wanting a new pair of Sunglasses before my holiday to Greece (we fly on Saturday and I can not wait!) and she told me to try http://www.sportsshadesonline.co.uk so I went onto the site and found a few different designs that I like then sent them an email asking about the prescription lenses. I got a call from Deborah that same day, introducing herself and explaining that the frames I have pick would be difficult to add prescription lenses to, but she could recommend a lot that I could use. We had a really nice conversation on the phone and then she sent me an email with links to the frames I could use. I browse through them at my own leisure, there was no pressure selling! I then emailed her back with three that I like. She called me and with her advice and help I chose the Giorgio Armani sunglasses (http://www.sportsshadesonline.co.uk/prodinfo.asp?prodid=1993). I did a Google search for the Frames and ...

Camelot Theme Park, Lancashire 09/09/2009

Great day out

Camelot Theme Park, Lancashire After hearing about the new ride a Camelot my friends and I decided to go this weekend and see what it was like. For those few who do not know what Camelot is I will give you a very brief overview: Camelot is a great theme park located near Chorley in Lancashire (North West England). It is a themed amusement park (a land of magic and great knights). They have rides for everyone from toddler to parents as well as indoor activities and a working farm. It is close to the M61 (leave at Junction 8) and is signposted, so easy to find. We got to Camelot for 10am (opening time), giving us plenty of time to go on all of the rides. It was free to park and cost £18 each to enter. The park is separated into 5 different sections: Land of the Brave, Merlins Playland, King’s Realm, Knight’s Valley, and Squire Bumpkins Friendly Park. We thought that the new ride Knightmare would be pretty busy later on in the day and so headed there first. We had read about this ride before going to the park and so were pretty excited about it. Advertised to pull more g force than any other ride in the UK, to be one of only 2 of its kind in the world, and to be over 2 minutes long we were all ready to see if it lived up to the hype. I have to say it did not disappoint – with 6 dips and twists and speeds of over 40mph it was an exceptional ride. I would give this ride 10 out of 10. Following Knightmare we had caught the high speed, fast ride bug and so headed off to Excalibur 2. This was a ...

Ocean Edge Leisure Park, Lancashire 09/09/2009

Great holiday with the family.

Ocean Edge Leisure Park, Lancashire I have stayed over night at Ocean Edge Caravan Park with my brother and his family. When they come north they usually stay in a caravan or holiday lodge or cottage, because now that he has kids there just isn't enough room for them all in our house. Ocean Edge Leisure Park is a caravan park on the coast of Morecambe Bay in the historical Heysham Village. The park is a short drive from Morecambe which has supermarkets and shops as well as tourist attractions for the family. The holiday park also had many facilities to keep us all occupied including: An arcade which entertained both us and the kids, An indoor soft play area which my two nieces absolutely love and spent most days in there, a swimming pool, A family lounge which was great for early evening, a beer garden which was great for the adults while the kids played in the outdoor adventure play area, internet access which was brilliant for my workaholic brother and a Sauna. The park is also right next to the sea which was brilliant for sea fishing (I go some weekends as I live reasonably close). Pets are also allowed, so although we only slept over a few nights our dog could come with us. Morecambe / Heysham is the perfect place for visiting both the Magnificent Lake District or have some fun in Blackpool. There are also beautiful views along Morecambe bay and the walk along the promenade is a lovely one. THE ACCOMMODATION My brother and his family stayed in a caravan, which for a caravan was really nice. There ...

Outnumbered - Series 1 (DVD) 07/09/2009

Brilliantly Funny!

Outnumbered - Series 1 (DVD) Outnumbered is a British comedy which is shown on BBC 1 and began in August 2007. It is a semi-improvised comedy about the Brockman family, who are mum and Dad - Pete and Sue and their three children - Jake, Ben and Karen. Each show runs for about 30 mins. I love this show, the majority of improvised lines are from the three children who are told the basic plot of a scene but then not given actual lines. These three kids are brilliantly funny and the reactions from Mum and Dad just add that extra spark to this clever, humorous, original and refreshing comedy. I do not have kids but when I am alone with my two nieces I certainly feel outnumbered and I think that this comedy really does capture the magic and mayhem small children can cause. The questions asked, particularly by Karen, or the responses from Jake and Ben to their parents, are spot on. Cast - - - - Hugh Dennis - Pete Claire Skinner - Sue Tyger Drew-Honey - Jake Daniel Roche - Ben Ramona Marquez – Karen The Story - - - - - - Each episode follows a day in the Brockman house hold, whether that is going to the petty zoo for Karen’s Birthday or Jake’s first day at school. The story is just things that go on in every house. We see Pete and Sue trying to get the kids to school on time, eat their tea and go to bed, while trying their best to answer all the difficult questions thrown at them by their children. The family. - - - - - - - The father - Pete Pete works at a rough school in South London as a history ...
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