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since 03/03/2003


Bellevue Park Hotel, Riga 28/03/2017

Bellevue Park Hotel Riga - much nicer than it looks from outside

Bellevue Park Hotel, Riga Bellevue Park Hotel, Riga Last January we spotted a bargain deal for three nights bed and breakfast plus return flights from Birmingham for a city break in Riga. I forget how much we paid but it was sufficiently cheap to get us to book the day we potted the deal. I believe it was around £150 for us both flying on one of the cheapie jets with carry on luggage only. ~~~~~~ FIRST IMPRESSION ~~~~~ Not a pretty looking building, rather sixties, basic functional with lots of windows and certainly not a wow but it did look well maintained and even with ice and snow all around it looked quite welcoming despite its rather functional looks. It might look much brighter in the summer with vegetation around it but in the grey and white snow and lack of sunshine it was pretty bleak. ~~~~~~ LOCATION ~~~~ The hotel is right next to a large park which was very pleasant although hard to walk around in all the deep snow so we stuck to the paths. It seemed to be quite a residential area and very quiet at all times. The hotel is right next to two tram lines and although it is only around a mile from the city walking was hard work on the icy and snowy pavements so we did make use of the trams which came around every ten minutes and didn't cost much at all, I believe it was €1.5 each and well worth it as you go to look around as it went into the city and people watch the locals going about their daily commute too. It felt very safe and I would have had no worries about using the tram by ...

Weleda Birch Body Scrub 26/03/2017

No need for birch beating .... Weleda Birch Body Scrub

Weleda Birch Body Scrub WELEDA BIRCH BODY SCRUB It is no secret that one of my favourite companies is Weleda. They not only make fantastic 100 % natural products but they also have a very ethical business using only ingredients that are sourced from people and places who are paid above fair prices for high quality, organically grown, natural plant ingredients. ~~~~~~~ ABOUT WELEDA ~~~~~~ This company was founded by Rudolph Steiner in Austria way back in 1921 originally as a natural pharmaceutical company. Weleda's products are created using the principles of principles of anthroposophic medicine. This is a holistic approach based on products made using ingredients grown in balance and harmony with nature. “A medical system that complements conventional medicine, anthroposophy takes a holistic approach and uses both conventional and anthroposophic medicinal products....... The therapy method of anthroposophic medicine is based on the balance between four organisational principles: the physical level; life forces level, or vitality; mental level and individual level or ego. The goal of therapy is to restore the necessary equilibrium when these four principles are out of balance.” They use no preservatives, parabens or any mineral based ingredients in their products. Thy do not test on animals or allow any of their ingredients to be tested on them either. “Whether it’s through fair trade, biodynamic cultivation or the supportive development of our employees – sustainability is part of our ...

Ghost Girl Eau de Toilette 25/03/2017

Very Sweet and Girly "Ghost Girl " EDT

Ghost Girl Eau de Toilette GHOST GIRL EDT This is yet another of my many samples I have in my collection. I seem to have mislaid the outer packaging and only have the small spray bottle now so hopefully the name will show up sufficintly in the photo. ~~~~~~~ABOUT GHOST ~~~~~ I had always thought that Ghost was a perfume name rather than the brand but it has never really been a perfume I have used at all. It appears to me that they only make perfumes and EDTs and they also seem to be aimed at the younger market judging by their adverts and videos. The advertising face of this range is Charlotte Free a young model. Ghost Girl was released in 2015 and followed their other scents including Enchanted Bloom, Ghost Moonlight and Ghost Whisper Rain. ~~~~~~THE PACKAGING ~~~~~ This is a very young looking package, bright and fun but certainly a package aimed at younger ladies or even teen girls. The box and bottle look to me like a very young teen or even rather childlike design. The box is white and covered in bright coloured graffitti with words such as 'love' 'adore' 'me' 'closer' and really does look almost like something you might find in a little girl's play perfume set. The bottle is tall and slim with a waist so it goes in in the middle. The glass is clear but once again it is covered in the same bright coloured grafftti words. The lid is bright pink covering the spray dispenser. It doesn't look like the sort of perfume you would buy for anyone over twenty unless they actually specifically ...

The Knot (DVD) 24/03/2017

Not "The Knot " I want to untie again

The Knot (DVD) THE KNOT – DVD When I spotted this on the ciao lottery I thought it might be worth a watch so borrowed it from a friend. She did warn me that it really was not a great film but I explained I would suffer it for the sake of reviewing – you can all thank me later for saving yourselves wasting an hour and a bit of your life!! ~~~~~~ FACTS ABOUT THE FILM ~~~~~ GENRE: Comedy, romance RATING: 15 LENGTH: 1 hr 32 min RELEASE DATE: 2012 DIRECTOR: Jesse Lawrence WRITERS: Noel Clarke, Davie Fairbanks, Geoff Carino STARRING: Noel Clarke, Daran Somers, Mena Suvari ,Matthew McNulty, Talulah Riley and others ~~~~~~~ THE STORY ~~~~~~ Well truly there isn't much of a story. Two young people Alexandra (Talulah Riley) and Jeremy (Matthew McNulty) are getting married. Rather stupidly they have the stag and hen parties the night before the wedding and after that it seems that there is one disaster after the other in a supposedly comic way . The comedy I suspect rather depends on what you find funny. I thought “Bridesmaids” was a bad film but this takes bad to the next level. They chose the most inept people to support them with best man Peter (Noel Clarke) and chief , bridesmaid Sarah (Mena Suvari) who both seem particularly useless when it comes to organisation on the day. ~~~~~~~ MY VIEWS ~~~~~~ Well I won't be watching this again and would not recommend anyone bothering unless they really like juvenile toilet humour and slapstick tinged with rather crude sexual scenes and ...

Good Things Miracle Mattifier Lotion 23/03/2017

Good Things - sure is a Miracle Mattifier

Good Things Miracle Mattifier Lotion GOOD THINGS MIRACLE MATTIFIER MOITURISER Over the years I have subscribed to a number of beauty boxes and I believe this small tube was in one of these. “Good Things” was not a brand I had come across before but since having this product I have had a number of other of their products and found them to be of good quality. ~~~~~ ABOUT GOOD THINGS ~~~~~ This is a company begun by Alice Hart Davis who is a beauty journalist and expert on beauty products, helping to judge beauty awards and writing her own blog and books on beauty. “Good Things” started in 2010 and their products can be bought in Boots stores. Their first products were the superfruits range and this moisturiser is in this range. Since then they have created two other ranges, Manuka Honey and Pore-fectly clear which was launched in 2016. ~~~~~~~ABOUT THE SUPERFRUITS RANGE ~~~~~ This range is designed to help those with young skin and particularly problem skin This range of products is made with superfruit beauty boosters , the idea being they help to clear excess oil from the skin without stripping out natural and essential oils and moisture. These superfruit extracts come from acai berries, blueberries and raspberries as these are all rich in anti-oxidants . They also help to reduce inflammation and help to combat spots before they develop. ~~~~~~ BUYING THIS AND ETHICS OF THIS MIRACLE MATTIFIER? ~~~~~~ Well mine comes in a small 17 ml tube in a pretty and subtle blue/mauve colour. I believe the full ...

Gucci Guilty Black Eau de Toilette 23/03/2017

No need to feel too Gucci Guilty Black with this EDT

Gucci Guilty Black Eau de Toilette Gucci Guilty Black – for her It is no secret that I love perfumes and send for as many samples and freebies as I see and I also ask for thee when in Department stores though they are getting a bit meaner with these than they used to be. I also fill in my time while waiting at airports in the Duty free shop testing different scents to see which I might fancy buying in future. My favourite shopping experience was the souk in Oman where there were all these fabulous perfume oils to try and I even managed to buy a few too. I don't hve favourite aromas and find that my choice of scent is mood or season or event dependant and my collection varies from light and fruity through to heavy and musky and many variations in between. ~~~~~~~ABOUT GUCCI ~~~~~~ Gucci is a fashion brand and not one that madly appeals to me but they also make make and beauty products as well as perfumes and these I do quite like. The present creative director is Alessandro Michele and he is steering the designs into a more modern look. Gucci describe themselves as “  one of the world’s most desirable fashion houses. Eclectic, contemporary, romantic—Gucci products represent the pinnacle of Italian craftsmanship and are unsurpassed for their quality and attention to detail “ ~~~~~~~ ABOUT THE GUILTY RANGE ~~~~~~ Gucci Guilty is my step daughter's scent of choice and one I like for a variety of occasions. This is a variation on the original Guilty aroma and it comes in a male and female version. I am ...

UniBond Tile On Walls Antimould Shower & Bathroom 22/03/2017

Unibond tile adhesive and grout - easy to use for non experts

UniBond Tile On Walls Antimould Shower & Bathroom Unibond Wall Tile anti mould Adhesive with grout Those who regularly read my reviews might have noticed a distant lack of reviews recently. The reason for this dearth is that I have been down in London staying with my daughter and partner to help them sort out their flat which was needing a lot of TLC. My daughter had been very organised and bought everything prior to us going down the week end before last. This huge 10 litre pot of Unibond Wall Tile Adhesive with grout which we thought would be sufficient for doing the tiles in their kitchen but because of the poor condition and the fact the walls were really uneven we did actually have to purchase a second smaller one towards the end of the job. ~~~~~~ BUYING THIS ~~~~~~~ She ordered this on line and went to collect it. Being in London she walked. She regretted that as soon as she saw the pot and regretted it even more walking back to her flat as it weighs a ton. Be warned you really do need a car to transport this as it is heavy and the handle is uncomfortable to carry it very far. Annoyingly this comes in different sized pots but they describe them differently. This I believe is 10 litres but they say its coverage is 8.2 sq metres and don’t give a quantity measurement. This huge tub costs around £35. The 1 litre pot costs around £11 and the coverage is 0.8 sq metres. Homebase do their own version of this product and it is a bit cheaper but I am not sure what that is like, however it would save a bit of money if you ...

David Brent: Life on the Road (Blu-ray) 10/03/2017

It is no "Spinal Tap" - " David Brent: Life on the Road

David Brent: Life on the Road (Blu-ray) LIFE ON THE ROAD I was not ever a fan of “The Office” and hated “ An Idiot Abroad” so I really didn't have much hope for this film appealing to me but one afternoon when my husband went to pick up the grandsons from school I had some time to kill and thought I'd give it a try as someone had lent it to me. ~~~~~~~ FACTS ABOUT THE FILM ~~~~~~ Genre : Comedy Classification: 15 Length: 1 hr 36 min Type: Blu-ray Studio: Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment Release date: 2016 Director: Ricky Gervais Stars: Ricky Gervais, Ben Bailey Smith, Tom Basden ~~~~~~~ CAST ~~~~ Ricky Gervais as David Brent Ben Bailey Smith as Dom Johnson Rebecca Gethings as Miriam Clarke Jo Hartley as Pauline Gray Andrew Brooke as Jerry 'Jezza' Collins Tom Bennett as Nigel Martin Tom Basden as Dan Mandeep Dhillon as Karen Parashar Diane Morgan as Briony Jones Kevin Bishop as DJ Ashley McGuire as Mo ~~~~~~~ WHAT IS IT ALL ABOUT? ~~~~ This is a mockumentary written directed and starring Ricky Gevai s he brings back David Brent from the Office fifteen years on. Brent is now a salesman for Lavichem selling household products and toiletries etc. He has a dream of being a rock star and takes time off from his job to tour with his band “ Foregone Conclusion”. He is funding the tour and the other members of the band really can't stand him. The tour is his final attempt to break into show bizz but the band don't exactly have huge crowded stadiums to play to. Does he make it ? Well you will have to sit ...

Daz Washing Powder 10/03/2017

Not Dazzling but good value

Daz Washing Powder DAZ WASING POWDER FOR WHITES AND COLOUREDS I received a large box of this powder from Super Savvy circle along with ten smaller packs and some vouchers for 50 p to share with friends and family . They also gave us some props, a cardboard coloured T shirt and cardboard microphone to do your own version of the Daz doorstep challenge. ~~~~~~PROCTER & GAMBLE ~~~~~ Daz is made by Procter and Gamble and is pretty old, I can remember Daz from my childhood so that shows how old it is. Daz was first introduced to the market in the United Kingdom and Ireland and in February 1953 I have pretty much ignored it over the years being more attracted to the more modern brands and obviously they are trying to update Daz and make it more appealing to the modern person doing the laundry. According to P&G around the world 4.6 billion people come into contact with a P&G product. Every day which is not surprising as they own many of the well known brands we use in our households. “ In nine out of ten households there is at least one Procter & Gamble product”. ~~~~~~~ HOW TO BUY YOUR DAZ ~~~~~~ This new Daz for whites and coloureds comes in three formats. The powder that I have to do this trial with. There are also 3 in 1 pods which are capsules but I am not sure what the 3 in 1 things are – they say “ Brilliant clean white, Dazzling whites, Bright colours” so no softener or anything except cleaning power. Finally new Daz comes in a liquid form which offers the same 3 cleaning ...

Weleda Wild Rose Day Cream 09/03/2017

Weleda Wild rose smoothing day cream eases the lines away

Weleda Wild Rose Day Cream Weleda Wild Rose Day Cream I am a huge fan of Weleda products and have been lucky enough to be invited to a couple of their Open days in Derbyshire to visit their beautiful organic garden as well as try so many of their products and we always get a nice goodie bag to take home with us too. ~~~~~~~~ ABOUT WELEDA ~~~~~~~ Weleda was started by the Swiss philosopher and educationalist Rudolph Steiner and some others in in 1921. Steiner believed in healing the body using natural products and healing the person not just dealing with the symptoms. It is all about balance, in the body and with the earth. The method of healing Steiner created is known as Anthroposophic Medicine and it aims to stimulate the healing process of the person by bringing mind , body and spirit into balance. Weleda products are also used in homeopathy as well as they are all natural plant based products that contain no preservatives or petroleum based products . Weleda's ethics have continued to this day to be working in balance with nature. Thy pay more than fair price to their suppliers and grown a lot of their own ingredients in their organic gardens in Germany, France and here in Derbyshire. Their products are 100% natural with no added fillers or preservatives or petroleum based oils in them at all. I could write this whole review about their philosophy and ethics but will stop here. ~~~~~~~A BIT ABOUT PACKAGING ~~~~~~~ Weleda don’t make posh packaging. They look functional and practical so ...

Rabbit Proof Fence (DVD) 08/03/2017

Rabbit Proof Fence - a useful guide home for three young girls

Rabbit Proof Fence (DVD) RABBIT PROOF FENCE This is a film that really hots home hard for me as one of my Australian friends discovered as an adult that her grandmother was one of these stolen generation half caste Aboriginal children. Her mother was ashamed of this and kept it hidden for years. She always said she was Greek and did in fact look a bit like she had Greek ancestors. My friends said she always wondered why some of her relatives were so dark but was told they had been out in the sun!! My friend now works advising the Australian government on pre school provision for Aborigine children. It was quite a shock for her to discover this late in her life and she was really upset that her grandmother had suffered in that way and she never knew. ~~~~~~ FACTS ABOUT THE FILM ~~~~~ GENRE: Drama, Adventure, Biography RATING: PG LENGTH: 1Hr 34 min RELEASE DATE: 2002 DIRECTOR: Phillip Noyce WRITERS:Doris Pilkington Garimara -book, Christine Olsen- screenplay STARRING: Everlyn Sampi, Tianna Sansbury, Kenneth Branagh CAST : Directed – Phillip Noyce Molly – Evelyn Sampi Daisy – Tianna Sansbury Gracie – Laura Monaghan Moodoo (tracker) – David Gulpilil Constable Riggs – Jason Clarke A O. Neville – Kenneth Branagh TAGLINES: “Follow Your Heart, Follow The Fence .” “ When the government kidnaps your children, you don't expect to see them again” ~~~~~~ THE STORY ~~~~~~ In the 1930s the Australian government decided that one way of diluting the Aborgine blood and further attempting to eradicate ...

Baby Einstein Rhythm of the Reef Play Gym 07/03/2017

Do you have a "Baby Einstein ? - Rhythm of the Reef Play gym

Baby Einstein Rhythm of the Reef Play Gym Baby Einstein Rhythm of the Reef Play Gym My step daughter has the most amazing group of friends who swap and lend each other big baby items and also spends some time trawling the facebook selling sites and as a result my three little grandchildren have enough toys and play equipment to supply a nursery! I am not sure where this item came from but I am pretty sure she didn't pay the full whack for it. For the previous baby she had a Fisher price jungle one and that was a loan from a mutual friend who is now using it for her second baby. ~~~~~~ BUYING THIS ~~~~~~ This can be bought from amazon for £54.99 through to £79.99 depending on which seller you choose. Argos have it for £35.99 and you can buy it from Tesco on line, ToysRus and others but if you do want to purchase this I would suggest shopping around. You could also check out Ebay though buying baby things second hand I would like to be able to wash it all thoroughly and some of the items are quite thick stuffed fabric so you would need to be able to dry it easily otherwise it might get smelly. ~~~~~~~~ ABOUT BABY EINSTEIN ~~~~~~ “ All of our products are inspired by a simple and universal idea: the curiosity of young children, and the wish of parents everywhere to nourish it.” The company was started around twenty years ago by a young Mum who wanted to encourage her children into a love of nature and things all around us. They now have a wide range of activity products and there is also a TV programme which ...

Charleston Sole Walking Tour, Charleston 05/03/2017

Charleston Sole walking tour

Charleston Sole Walking Tour, Charleston Charleston Sole Walking Tour, Charleston Tel: 843-364-8272 PO Box 117 Charleston SC 28402 Last year we did a self drive tour of the Southern states of the USA and we began our tour in Charleston. We always do a lot of research before we go and had a list of things we wanted to do including this walking tour. We flew into Atlanta and stopped on the way to break the journey before driving on to Charleston. We did this walking tour the day after we had spent a night in Charleston when we felt slightly less travel weary. ~~~~~~~~BOOKING THE TOUR ~~~~~~ You have to book this on line or by telephone. We booked on line through the site and chose the 10 am start. The other tour times are : Monday—Saturday: Morning Tour, 10 a.m. Monday—Saturday: Afternoon Tour, 2 p.m. Sunday: 11 a.m. The tour officially lasts two hours but ours was in fact quite a bit longer, at least two and a half hours. The cost of the tours : Adults – $20.00 Children 6-12 – $10.00 Under 6 – Free ~~~~~~ ABOUT THE TOUR ~~~~~ The tour is usually around two hours and you walk around one and a half miles. The tour Starts behind the Old Exchange Building on East Bay Street in Downtown Charleston and the walk goes between East Bay and Meeting Streets with a number of stops along the way for stori and information. The main places the walk stops at the start at the Old Exchange Building, then Dock Street Theatre, Old Slave Mart Museum, St. Michael’s Church, ...

Decleor Hydra Floral BB Cream 24Hr Moisture Activator 04/03/2017

Decleor Hydra Floral BB cream - cover minor faults well

Decleor Hydra Floral BB Cream 24Hr Moisture Activator Decleor Hydra Floral BB Cream 24Hr Moisture Activator I was lucky enough to win a beauty Advent calendar from a beauty site I write reviews on and this was one of the products behind on of the windows. It is not a product I have come across before and I do like BB creams so I was keen to try it. ~~~~~~~ ABOUT DECLÉOR ~~~~~~ The company is over forty years old and as you might have guessed by its name it started in Paris. They create beauty products using nature’s purest and most potent active ingredients using essential oils that are known to be beneficial to the skin. They use aromatherapy theories and experience to make products that not only smell nice but are scientifically chosen and blended to be of benefit to different skin needs. They believe they are “Trusted by the world’s best beauty professionals, offers specialist products and exclusive massage techniques and treatments to deliver the ultimate in skincare results and professional care. “ The company state that they use ingredients from sources that are considerate to suppliers and the environment. They do not test on animals and use no animals extracts in their products. They have reduced their use of silicones, synthetic colourants and use a minimal amount of ethanol. They do use preservatives and say these are only those “ authorized worldwide and that are known to be secure for the skin.” ~~~~~~~ABOUT HYDRA FLORAL BB CREAM ~~~~~~~ This comes in a tube which holds 40 ml and costs £29. My small ...

Ibis Budget Birmingham Airport, Birmingham 03/03/2017

Ibis Budget BHX -You couldn't get much closer to the terminal

Ibis Budget Birmingham Airport, Birmingham Ibis Budget Birmingham Airport, Birmingham Ambassador Road, Birmingham International Airport, Birmingham, England, B26 3AW Tel : 0203 450 6788 This is a hotel we use for the night before a very early flight from Birmingham. Despite the fact we only live around an hour from the airport staying here means we can get up just before check in rather than a few hours before. The hotel is right at the airport so we can leave our ar at the long stay car park the night before and simply walk across the few yards which takes but five minutes just before check in time. ~~~~~ BOOKING THIS HOTEL ~~~~~ Obviously you can book directly by phoning or through the Ibis website but we always use as we get a free night for every ten nights booked and I book this going through topcashback an get a bit more back that way. I always try to get every little bit back when booking or buying things. Through this cost us around £50 for the night. The price varies a little depending on the time of year and day of the week. ~~~~~~~FINDING THE HOTEL| ~~~~~~~ Now this may seem obvious as there are not that many hotels on the airport site but all of the hotels are in the same area. There are also two ibis hotels, the Ibis proper and the Ibis budget. They are in the same building but you enter through a different door which is not that well labelled. You can use the public facilities n the Ibis such as the bar and breakfast as it is not included in the price – you y extra for ...
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