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since 25/08/2006


Lloyds Pharmacy Blood Pressure Monitor 13/02/2007

Oooh - Time to play Doctors and Nurses!

Lloyds Pharmacy Blood Pressure Monitor A couple of years ago my partner was diagnosed with Diabetes and also a blood pressure level of 220 over 130, which was shockingly (as the nurse informed him) stroke level! And has been having treatment ever since and not nearly as many check-ups as he should have, so when I saw the advert on TV for Lloyds Pharmacy's Blood Pressure Monitor for only £9.99, I quickly snapped one up. Needless to say all family and friends and even the poor customers of our pub have been rigged up and thoroughly checked with this product! The monitor which is approx 12cm x 8cm, white in colour with a light blue start button and dark blue on/off button and labels above the results window, stating from left to right Systolic, Diastolic and Pulse/min, comes complete with carry pouch, a blue medium cuff/sleeve, instruction manual, a leaflet on Lifestyle advice to lower Blood Pressure, a Blood Pressure Record Table to record your own results and batteries. You can actually buy bigger or smaller cuffs for £2.99, the one in the box is medium, which fits my arm (average) and my partners (like Shreks)!. The instructions are very straight forward and the monitor is easy to use. Briefly you connect the sleeve via a rubbery looking tube to the monitor, thread your arm through the blue sleeve above 2cm from your elbow joint, secure with the velcro fastening, leaving enough room to fit 2 fingers in-between the sleeve and your arm, switch the monitor on and press start (the machine automatically ...

Mr Muscle Sink and Plughole Unblocker 10/02/2007

Definately no muscles needed for the job!

Mr Muscle Sink and Plughole Unblocker Having spent at least half an hour poking and examining the contents of the kitchen sink plug hole to no avail, my mind in a whirl knowing the sink blocker would be in no fit state to do anything as last time I saw it was in the dog field, don't ask me why, maybe my partner thought it would make an excellent, alternative toy for the Danes or maybe he just left it after unblocking the outside drains, the latter probably being the case! A Ureka moment suddenly came over me, remembering I had solved a fowl smell emanating from the bathroom sink a few months ago with - wait for it - "MR MUSCLE SINK AND PLUGHOLE UNBLOCKER" !!! It has to be said with emphasis as you have probably heard the adverts shouting it out, I don't know who wins the competition for shouting their adverts - Mr Muscle or Cillit Bang! Each makes me want to reach for the aspirins and lie down in a dark room. Anyway, with the speed of lightening the knife (which I had attacked the sink hole with) was flung and the bottle was snatched from the cupboard, fingers crossed there would be enough left to do the unblocking, I had that sinking feeling (sink? sinking?? oh never mind) there was only a little bit left in the bottle, why do I do that? Why do I keep minute particles in fridges and cupboards which I should know is no use to man or beast - only the bin? Anyway with the optimism that has got me through life so far, I emptied the tiny remains down the sink, I couldn't believe it - the rotting piece of ...

Zoflora Concentrated Disinfectant 05/12/2006

This disinfectant definately wins my vote!

Zoflora Concentrated Disinfectant Having been brought up with the smell of Zoflora's Hyacinth and Bouquet disinfectant with my mum usually having at least one bottle in the kitchen cupboard, I did the same, especially being the owner of dogs a strong disinfectant is definately a must in our household. Unfortunately due to my curiosity and the continuing appearance of new products, Zoflora has collected dust and has been shoved further and further to the back of the cupboard. A few weekends ago though, whilst shopping, I decided to invest in one of the new fragarances Zoflora has on offer - Citrus Fresh at £2.15 for a 200ml bottle. At first you can be forgiven if you think this is quite steep for a little bottle of disinfectant, but when you read that you dilute 1 part of Zoflora to 40 parts of water, it becomes more reasonable. I used to have a nasty habit of chucking most of the contents of the bottle into a bowl when I'm washing floors etc, which is an absolute waste, so now I have been a good girl - I used an empty cleaning spray bottle and filled it with the correct solution of Zoflora and water. I then sprayed all the kitchen units - which are white and not wood so no harm there, the sink, floor - everything and then wiped all down with a cloth. The results were stunning, hardly any elbow grease was needed and the smell (because I had diluted correctly, probably for the first time) was very refreshing, thus the bathroom was attacked soon after with the same results, I found that the citrus cut through ...

Peacocks (Shop) 14/11/2006

I've been strutting my Peacock clothes for years!

Peacocks (Shop) Peacocks is a chain store offering clothes and assessories for all the family, originally from Warrington, Peacocks has currently over 460 stores throughout the UK and employs over 5000 staff and is part of the Peacock Group which includes Bonmarche and The Fragrance shop. (I find that the clothes are better quality than Bonmarche) I should have shares in this store, it is the only shop we have in our village - Heckmondwike, that sells clothes suitable for the whole family. The store is quite large, we used to have bouncers on the door when it first opened about 3 years ago, but they must trust us now as they have long since gone, either that or they can't afford to employ them! The store is well set out in sections: Ladies, gents and children complete with plenty of light and airconditioning. In our store there are only 2 changing rooms, although they are ample in size and have two mirrors in each and plenty of hooks for the garments, there can be quite a queue at times, being the only clothes shop in the village, almost everyone shops here! They have a delivery every Wednesday (I told you I should have shares) and by Wednesday afternoon, Thursday morning the new items are on display. The sizes for the ladies range from 10-12 up to around 20-22, I have found though at times that the size you are looking for isn't there especially 14-16, the larger sizes are sometimes hard to find too. I can personally say though whatever the size, the amount of fabric is ...

Amore 02/11/2006

Tremendous Tenor from Tuscany

Amore My taste in music as most people's are, is very varied, almost becoming quite mongrel like - heinz 57 and all that, from my heavy metal days - Meatloaf, Saxon, Status Quo, to hardcore dance music, bending its way around quite nicely to a smattering of classical including this little beauty: This I warn you now is quite lengthy, I have included not only the CD content but a little resume of Bocelli's life history. BOCELLI - The story so far: Born September 22 1958 (just in case you want to send a card)! In Lajatico in the Tuscan countryside - Italy. Since a young boy inspired by tenors such as Del Monaco, Gigl and Corelli, Bocelli's dream was to become a great tenor. An excerpt from his biography: "Despite the fact that I live in a fast-paced world, I live my life with a calm vision. I enjoy life's simple pleasures and face every challenge with passion. I try to always be optimistic by interpreting the real meaning of a quotation from the French novelist Antoine de Saint in "The Little Prince" 'You see clearly only through your heart, the essential is invisable to your eye'" Wow, well said - I thought I would just slip that one in! As a child he played the organ in church, in 1970 he won his first song competition "Margetierita d'oro" in Viareggio with "O sole Mio" In the 1980's he became believe it or not a state appointed defense attorney for a year, then he decided to dedicate himself solely to music where he took music lessons from Beltarini, ...

Bissell 1950 E Quickwash 17/10/2006

I'm gonna wash that dog right out of my carpet!

Bissell 1950 E Quickwash Silly me, I loaned my Vax Rapide out to my partner's daughter, thinking there'd be no problem getting it back. A few days later - partner falls out with daughter, 5 weeks later - no carpet washer - carpets nearly walking out of the door! Having 2 children and four large dogs, I need to wash our carpets at least once a week, especially in Winter. Due to it not being my fault for losing my cleaner (apart form letting it go out of the house in the first place) I made my partner buy me a new one, after much nagging, we couldn't afford to spend alot as we've had lots of expenses these last few weeks, but something is better than nothing. Enter the Bissell Quick Wash 1950E It's the same size as an average upright cleaner. It has an electric blue colour plastic see-through tank at the front to hold the dirty water, a white plastic body and a white see through tank at the back holding the clean water and shampoo. A metal handle with white plastic at the top where you hold it. An on off switch at the back covered in waterproof plastic - no frizzy hair today then! Assembly To assemble, which is easy, insert metal handle into the cleaner, and insert screw at the back using a Phillips screwdriver. It's easy to fill the 2 litre tank - lift vertically from the holder, unscrew the cap which is in the middle (this is also your measuring cup for the shampoo), lie flat and pour warm water until you reach the line which is on the tank to let you know when it's full and add ...

Old El Paso Fajita Dinner Kit 16/10/2006

Not quite the "Whole Enchilada"

Old El Paso Fajita Dinner Kit The company behind Old El Paso is General Mills who started life right back in the 1860's with a pair of flour mills on opposite banks of the Mississippi River. General Mills in various forms, due to numerous merges have been behind great names such as Betty Crocker, The Pillsbury Doughboy, Wheaties, Bisquick among others. They also market brands like Haagen Dazs and Cheerios. Believe it or not there are actually at least 57 Old El Paso products on the market thoughout 100 countries worldwide, including dinner kits, salsas, spice mixes, tortillas, sauces and many more. On average the kit costs around £2.65 and is available from most large supermarkets, such as Asda, Morrisons, Tesco, Sainsburys, your local Co-op sells it too. You can buy the complete dinner kit, or you can buy the items needed individually: Salsa sauce - Hot thick or Mild thick 228g jar around £1.48 Fajita seasoning around £0.68 35g Flour torillas £1.48 for 8 or £1.98 for 12 Fajitas - pronounced fah-hee-tas is the next best thing if you haven't got a hickory wood fire like the old Mexican cattle rangers had. Flour Tortillas - pronounced tor-tee-yas comes from the Spanish word "torta" which means round cake. Spaniards gave the Tortillas this name when they discovered them in the 16th Century. Mexicans used Tortillas as bread to surround their chosen fillings. They can be frozen. I actually received the kit as a sample which was a great bonus for me, love freebies, love them even more ...

Books for Children 13/10/2006

Story Time!

Books for Children I was a real book worm when I was a little girl, even reading extra special books like 101 Dalmations by Dodie Smith at least 5 times. My love for reading continued right up until I had my children, but my concentration span has lessened since then, the big tomb like books I used to read within a week, now collect dust for the rest of eternity. My two boys aged 16 and 9, love me to buy the books but I know for a fact half of them haven't been read, still, I keep trying and will continue to do so. So finding either book clubs or cheap bargain book shops that saves me money on the things that may or may not be read is advantageous. Books for children is one book club that I have used, my first requisition was a Lets Speak Spanish which included a sticker activity book, a sing-along CD, Spanish book, board game and model-making kit, I chose this as eventually we are hoping to move to Spain. I only had to pay for postage and packing at £1.49, I'm still trying to pin my youngest down for more than 10 minutes to see if its any good, he likes the model making kit, but that's not going to get him anywhere with speaking the language! Books for children usually offer for first timers 5 books from just 50p each as an introduction. Their website: An example of the sort of books on offer on the website: Fantasy Phonics - RRP £24.00, joining price £2.50, Julia Donaldson's Gruffalos Child Jigsaw Book for 3 + RRP £10.99, joining price £0.50 or you can ...

Great Dane 03/10/2006

Man's best giant!

Great Dane In this review, I'll first start with my own experiences with Great Danes and then give you the "low down" on the breed. When my friend Dave (later my partner) told me he was going to get a dog for himself and his pub - I thought "ooh lovely, a nice little Spaniel would look really cosy in front of the fire". I was in for a shock when he brought home a Great Dane a few weeks later! "A Great Dane??? What on earth do you want such a big lumox of a dog like that for? They grow too big to sit on your knee, he/she will knock you over and the punters?" Well I won't repeat what I thought they would do! How wrong I was Bailey - a 16 week old Great Dane black (I'll explain the colours later) arrived via car with my partner and his son complete with full sick bag. I didn't live there then and Dave found it hard to train the dog and look after the pub, after copious amounts of mountainous poo (I'm being polite here) and shredded carpet stairs, gnarled banisters, he decided that Bailey was better outside and built him a kennel out of his garage. I never believed that a dog could be happier living outside than in, but Bailey won't have it any other way. I've watched him grow from a leggy teenager to a regal looking solid handsome brute, who would go over hot coals for me and my family. With him being 7 now arthritis is settling in and I try to get him to live in-doors but after an hour or so, he's chomping at the bit to go back outside to his brood. Yes, as you've ...

Member Advice on Tarot Reading 26/09/2006

A small introduction to Tarot

Member Advice on Tarot Reading Having cogitated for hours on where to begin! How to describe individually 78 cards, when there are literally hundreds of interpretations for each individual card, even the names of each can differ from deck to deck. Then there's the history - Which came first the chicken or the egg?? So that you know from the beginning, I am not going to give meanings for each card as this will differ with your own pack and your own interpretations, but a little history, the structure of a Tarot pack and a few tips and advice, which hopefully may help! I've decided to give just one example of how the Tarot meanings can differ from one rule of thought to another: Taken from "The Enchanted Tarot" - Amy Zerner and Monte Farber: "The suit of wands corresponds to the element of fire, which is associated with action, passion, creativity, enterprise, faith, the season of SPRING and the direction - south" "The Sacred Circle Tarot" - Anna Franklin, illustrated by Paul Mason, is very similar with it's listings: "Element: fire, Colour: red, Attributes: the spirit, the will, creativity, career, vision, Direction: South, Season: SUMMER" Whereas: "the Mythic Tarot" - Juliet Sharman-Burke and Liz Green, illustrated by Tricia Newell, doesn't explain the suit of wands in that way at all but tells the story of "Jason and the Argonauts and their expedition to seek the Golden Fleece". As far as history goes - pin the donkey! China? India? Egypt? The gypsies? "Step by Step Tarot - Terry ...

Ideal Home 24/09/2006

Wish my house was an Ideal Home!

Ideal Home Still waiting to move house, feels like I'm going to be here forever, how many people feel like that?? So what with chocolate in hand and a home magazine, life can be escaped for an hour or two (not the chocolate though, that's about 5 seconds)! IPC media who publish this magazine is one of UK's leading consumer magazine publishers selling over 350 million copies each year (so someone else is trying to escape too! or they might be just a little luckier than me and have just got their dream home to attack with wonderful new ideas)?? reaching 70% of UK women and 50% of UK men - 28 million UK adults. Other magazines they publish: Living etc, Homes and Gardens, Woman and Home, What's on TV, Now, Marie Claire, In Style, Loaded, Nuts, NME, Wallpaper, Country Life, The Field, Rugby World, Practical Boat owner, Pick Me Up and TV Easy. IPC (International Publishing Corporation) is owned by Time Inc - the publishing division of Time Warner, the world's largest media organisation. To find out more about IPC you can visit it has got quite an intersting history of their major magazines. Back to the mag - you can subscribe for 6 issues for £6 or monthly £2.99 working out to be slightly pricier than some of their competitor mags (around £2.80) it has on average 195 pages including the usual advertisements. It includes: Home ideas, where to find bargains, advice on typical in-vogue decor, gardening and DIY topics. If you can't wait for your next issue, ...

Cadbury Crunchie ice cream bars 24/09/2006

A blast from the past!

Cadbury Crunchie ice cream bars Whilst doing the weekly shopping, I always like to buy "our lot" something different - usually in the treat department, remembering not to look in any mirrors while I do! The Crunchie Blast bars are retailing at £1.99 for a pack of 3 but there are many bogof offers at the supermarkets (in the ice-cream freezers), which cemented the deal for me! (doesn't take much I can tell you). The packaging has eye catching colours of mainly purple and orange (similar to that of the Crunchie chocolate bar), with a (slightly larger in width) life-size picture of the Crunchie Blast bar. The exact dimensions once out of the individual wrapper (not including stick) is 10cm (4 inches) long and 2.2cm (0.8 inches approx) wide. I've unwrapped it now so I shall just have to eat it - seems rude not to! Does look exactly like the one on the box, slightly thinner as I said earlier (choc bars must go on diets too)! The outside has a similar texture to an almond choc bar on a stick, but instead of almonds - it's a blast from the past - it's that old POPPING CANDY! Where you're whole brain thinks it's popping fifty to the dozen, but with only 4% of popping candy it is slightly more subtle. The milk chocolate coating is quite thin, and crumbles in your mouth, tasting every bit like the chocolate that you get from a normal Crunchie bar. The ice-cream itself (which among melting chocolate bits is now dripping onto my keyboard - lovely, another hour removing the keys)! has a lovely creamy ...

10 Things I Miss About My Childhood 20/09/2006

They don't make snow like they used to!

10 Things I Miss About My Childhood I'll just get straight on with the 10 things I miss about my childhood: 1) My Grandad, he died when I was 7 but he only lived around the corner from me when he retired, so I saw him every day and can remember him as if it was yesterday. I once fell off a friend's bike when she was giving ma a "saddle ride", she turned around a corner which felt like 70 miles an hour to me only being six at the time - and fell off the bike just as a bus was coming towards us the other way, I hit my head on the road and was knocked out (I was told later, my friend had left me in the road and was rescued by an elderly lady who saw the whole thing) I didn't recover until I was home on my bed (my mum had to carry me up 3 flights of steps, we lived in a flat) and awoke to see my Grandad smiling down at me and will remember his words forever "Hello love, here's 50p for not crying"! 2) Before Grandad retired he had a grocer's shop and there was always a mix-up bag choc full of goodies for me when I visited with my mum (there was only me and mum, we always say we brought each other up - wind beneath my wings and all that) Grandad's wish before he died was that he hoped his grandchildren would remember his shop, I bet he would never in his wildest dreams, thought that one day 31 years later it would be on the computer and something called the Internet (not even invented then) for everyone to see. I once went to a medium and she said "Grandad's holding a bag of sweets, but go easy on them" Cheek!! ...

Real Homes 19/09/2006

It's really real!

Real Homes I always look forward to this magazine gracing the shelves every month, it's got a down to earth, practical approach to all it's ideas and concepts. Real Homes is published by Hachette Filipachi Ltd which has a port-folio of 7 other magazines including Elle which I think we've all heard of. The company is present in 39 countries publishing 262 titles and sells over 1 billion copies worldwide. Real homes retails at £2.50 per monthly issue consisting of around 188 pages or by subscription at £12 for 12 issues then £13.44 for every 6 issues, I think this is excellent value and would rate this magazine as one of my favourites - it truly does have "real" homes which the average home owner or perspective can relate to. Contents Include: Real Homes - A selection of around 6 different reader's homes (approx 8 pages on each 1) including tips on how to achieve each look, with examples of item's prices and top tips. Real Makeovers - Gives inspirational ideas for every room in the house every month. Real Living - Tips, info + advice - sub headings include: Style Zone - Colour Trends. Over to you - letters, tips and ideas. Expert Q & A on that month's subject. A taste of the med - recipes. Real Shopping - Various topics including consumer Q&As. A buyer's guide to..and shopping for.... Real Offers - Including subscription and competitions Real Regulars Eds Letter, Diary dates - best days and nights out. Coming next month. Mr fix it - giving tips and ...

BBC Good Homes 19/09/2006

I want that room!

BBC Good Homes Thinking that I am moving for the last 7 years (and still haven't yet)! has given me plenty of time to escape into a few magazines or two! Good Homes published by the BBC is one of them. It's a good all round monthly home decor mag, targeting mainly at an average salary bracket of most home or potential home owners. Retailing on most supermarket shelfs and newsagents at £2.99 or you can subscribe via the internet for £28.99 for 12 issues or subcribe using the form in the magazine, depending on what part of the year you subscribe they have different special offers eg: 3 issues for £1 and the next 6 issues £12.50. The monthly magazine is usually out the month before, eg December's issue out in November, so you can see what the latest deals and trends are for the coming month especially helpful when organising Christmas etc. The contents page has the following headings (just to give you a rough idea): Decorating - questions and answers, trends etc Makeovers - displaying properties that have been bought and renovated by both celebrities and none celebs Shopping - buyers quide eg: to microwaves, price patrol - giving ideas for a low as well as a high budget Special offers - including subscription offers Regulars - letters from the editor, sneak preview - latest trend for interiors, shopping guide, garden ideas, bathroom update, just for you - letters, giveaways and crossword. What's in next month's issue, classifieds (around 10 pages at the back displaying ...
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