Tesco Hudl 2 Tablet Review...

Wednesday, 31 December 2014
A little while back I was contacted to see if I wanted to give a Hudl2 a home and write about my thoughts on owning one. It won't come as any surprise to readers that I've always wanted an iPad but never had the funds to fulfil that desire. Last year I bought a Samsung tablet to see if that would suffice, but very quickly it turned slow - despite numerous resets and it's been sat in a draw for months. A work colleague has a Hudl for her son and when talking about the opportunity in the office one day she convinced me to say yes as she spoke very highly of the Hudl2.
At 8.3" the Hudl2 is a fair amount smaller than my Samsung tablet which made me wonder would I think it worth it. I have an iphone 5 so using that for internet browsing, social media and shopping is easy enough. However, I actually have ended up preferring the slightly smaller screen of the Hudl2, which makes it that perfect hand held size, but large enough for the Hudl2 to be worth using over my phone. I like that I can hold the Hudl2 comfortably in one hand, especially as it's not too heavy but then not too light that it feels fragile. It doesn't hurt that much when you drop it on your face half asleep either!

The display on this tablet is impressive, everything is crisp and clear - unlike my Samsung. This makes watching youtube, bbc iplayer and all those types of things a really great experience. Coupled with the cover that turns into a stand, the Hudl is the perfect "mini tv". The sound is really clear too, this is down to the Dolby Stereo Sound functionality. You really don't have to turn the volume up to the highest setting either, it's surprising just how loud this little device goes to. 

The first apps I installed were the usual social media ones, blogger to edit posts on the go and my secret favourite - candy crush. As mentioned in my video, reading on the tablet is so clear that browsing the internet and reading bloglovin is just a joy. The Tesco app, as expected, is already included on the tablet but it's not "in your face", they have done it right by allowing you to hide it. 
This is a great tablet and I am pretty much glued to it since getting it. If you've been given some Christmas money and are in the market for a new tablet I would 100% recommend, it's only £129! 

Hope you have had a lovely Christmas. 

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Christmas Party Outfit Planning...

Monday, 15 December 2014
Dress - The City Rack // Shoes - Chichi*

I have been away from my blog again for about a week and it's all because my sister had a pretty nasty accident in work. Last Sunday I had a call from a terrified Emily saying she was on the floor in work and an ambulance was on its way. Turns out she'd fallen in work and has snapped her upper arm. Both of us didn't have any sleep in over 36 hours whilst we got her sorted in a&e, a few days in hospital and an operation later she is now sitting at home with a metal plate in her arm. Ouch!

Anyway, it's also the time of year that the emails come around in work detailing where we are off for our Christmas Party and this year, after many years of wearing skinny jeans, I decided I would wear a dress. I mean, no tights legs out - a dress. I'm not even sure why. 

I've had this bright pink dress from The City Rack for a while now and I thought that the bright pink was the perfect non-festive colour for me. I also like that it's already got a statement necklace attached, I'm pre-empting that the party is going to be boiling hot, and when I'm hot I hate wearing necklaces. I realise that makes me sound like I'm having a hot flush haha. 

These shoes from Chichi arrived just in time and are going to be perfect for the party. I like the bow detailing on the back and that makes them ideal for a night out. Despite making me feel at least ten feet taller they are actually really comfortable. I think its because the bit around the front of the shoe is thicker than most party shoes, my feet don't feel like they are about to get pinched in half! As they are matte black, I've even worn these into work... you know, power heels and all that!

Mask of Magnaminty...

Friday, 5 December 2014

My skin is being a real pain in the behind at the moment and we are not friends. I am getting spots and I don't want them, let's face it - who does.. 

Whilst at the Lush Christmas event a while back I asked a few people what they usually use on their face for problematic skin. So many people suggested this face mask that I was set on picking it up. Plus I love peppermint so was pretty much sold when I saw that on the label.

Whilst it does look like mouldy porridge, the mask smells amazing and does work. I've been using this a couple of times a week and have seen an improvement in my skin. Whilst I can't be sure that it's down to the mask alone I think I will keep on buying this - when I've used up everything else I have! I think that using a mask, or looking forward to using a mask actually makes me take my make up off properly, which in turn helps my skin.

The mask is full of aduki beans that have been ground up so you can use this as an exfoliator which is what I do. I scrub my face with this, focussing on the rough skin around my jaw line and then leave on for around 20 minutes to do it's work. 

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Slow cooked gammon in coke...

Wednesday, 3 December 2014

I'm pretty hungry right now, so typing up a post about one of the best things I've ever cooked isn't easy. It's going to be a pretty quick post though, all I did was place a joint of gammon in 2 litres of coca cola for 8 hours in the slow cooker. The above was the result.

I don't tend to like oven cooked gammon as I find it far too salty I think. However when you cook gammon in coke you end up with a fairly sweet flavour to it which I much prefer. 

Next I want to try making my own pulled pork!

What's your favourite recipes for the slow cooker?

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Millennium & Copthorne Hotels Guide to Cardiff - Thornhill Farm Shop

Monday, 1 December 2014

When asked to pick one of my favourite local spots in Cardiff for the Millennium & Copthorne Hotels guide to Cardiff there was no question where I would choose. I regularly venture here for breakfast, lunch and to pick up some local produce. Whilst I've been given vouchers for my visit today, I've blogged about this place many many times before

Thornhill Farm Shop is located in North Cardiff, just before Caerphilly Mountain. The Farm Shop opened in 2006 and sells home and locally produced produce. There is even a caravan park on site so if you are travelling from afar you can set up camp. Thornhill Farm Shop caters to those, like myself, who prefer to shop locally. Everything is displayed so beautifully and is always the highest of quality. There is 80 acres of farmland which produces beef, lamb and home grown vegetables. 

I love nothing more that browsing the shop floor after a nice breakfast in the cafe. In particular I love all the wooden display units and the cottagey feel that the shop has, it's so picturesque. On our Sunday trip their we picked up eggs, venison sausages, a joint of lamb, sirlon steak, a loaf of fresh bread and some pork chops. There is such a huge variety of goods from sweets to fresh bread to meats to specialist oils and more. 

Antlers Cafe is the place to be to sip a cup of coffee and fill your belly with either a tasty breakfast, lunch or snack. The breakfasts are fantastic at setting you up for the day and often I will enjoy a bacon baguette and a latte before going to the dogs home for the day. However, the lunches are my favourite. I can highly recommend the ham panini and always get the side of coleslaw. The homemade coleslaw is the best I have ever eaten. 
There are some very talented bakers that work at Antlers Cafe and there is always a huge selection of cakes on offer there, some even award winning, A special note to the lemon drizzle cake as I could eat my weight in that cake and still not get bored of the taste.

I guess it's no surprise that my favourite part of Thornhill Farm Shop is the animal paddock. Usually all the animals are in the fields above but at Christmas time they head inside and recreate the nativity which is just super cute. And yes I just said "super cute". 

Probably a bit insensitive to mention sausages right after a photo of a pair of pigs, but tonight we ate the sausages we bought which were delicious, especially when inside slices of the fresh loaf of bread we also bought. 

I can't recommend this place enough if you are in the area, or have a caravan. You can really make a decent day out of it, great for kids, animals and amazing food. What more do you need?

What I take dog walking...

Thursday, 27 November 2014
It's no secret to the world that I love dogs and I'm sure you all know that a few months ago I was inducted to be a volunteer dog walker. I won't lie and type here to say that I was ready for what faced me on walks, as someone who doesn't own a dog I didn't really know exactly what I would need. I'd only ever been on walks with dogs who are owned by friends or family. Therefore they are pretty well trained and no real effort to walk. Plus the owners were always responsible for all the "equipment needed"!

I'll give you an insight into the first few walks I ever did. Let's just say I knew I needed to invest in a few items before walking another dog!!! Obviously I knew to wear old clothes, that was a given. However I didn't have any coat with a hood, or one that was waterproof for that matter. Even though you can see above that I picked up a waterproof coat and it's even the same colour as the charity clothes - it didn't have a hood. Which I found out mid walk, whilst it poured down with rain. On my head. 

I picked up my own lead straight away, the charity uses slip leads so I picked up this one from Pets at Home. Since then I've picked up another one which is a thicker rope for the pully dogs. It's just a bit easier on my hands. I'm considering buying a harness for myself so I can put it on any dogs that I walk who pull so much they almost pass out!

The final piece to the dog walking puzzle for me was when I realised I really needed a rucksack to hold all this stuff rather than trying to walk with a handbag. Due to my anxiety I have to have to have a few things always on me so I feel calmer and a bit more prepared. Namely these are a bottle of water, a carrier bag and a selection of tablets... odd I know. I found this one in Matalan for around £12 and I love it. Although after a couple of months of using it it has faded which I'm not too impressed with. I'm also a giant idiot as the bag isn't waterproof, so this will be my summer dog walking bag. if anyone knows any good places to buy a waterproof rucksack please let me know. 

I'm loving being able to shop in the dog aisle now, treats galore! 

Also, poo bags. Because - poo.

Clogau Xmas Kissses...

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Last week I paid a visit to Clogau Gold's Christmas evening where the shop was decked out in mistletoe and Christmas decorations. We snacked on salmon bites, drank champagne (I drank orange juice) and chatted among the awesome gold jewellery. We even tried on a ring that was worth over £12,000 - hey a girl can dream. 

As part of the evening we all got given a voucher, whilst I can't afford to splash out on the jewellery even with a voucher I'm going to put it towards some perfume which I've heard great things about.

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An Introduction to Paul Mitchell...

Monday, 24 November 2014
A couple of weeks ago I headed to the St David's Hotel in Cardiff to spend an evenig with the guys from Paul Mitchell. I've never really dabbled into the brand so I had a nosey on the website before heading over and what I was reading really intrigued me. Paul Mitchell is against animal testing which I know will be great news for a lot of people who read my blog, but also has a lot of company values that I admire - it's nice to see these haven't been lost. You can read more of their values here there are so so many. 

On the night we had the chance to have our hair done. Amy (http://www.floraandflynn.com/) had the most awesome quiff created. It was so tall but looked awesome and surprisingly wearable. I had a fishtail plait done and I LOVED it. I can't do them.. yet, I'm still watching youtube videos so I can master the art of it. I also kept the plait in for three days afterwards. Thank goodness for dry shampoo. 

I spoke for ages to the staff about my hair woes and it honestly felt like a catch up with friends. My favourite type of event, so relaxed and chatty. I took home a pretty hefty goody bag and I can't wait to use and write about all the products. 

Oh and here's cowbiscuits. And she's now on youtube too. 

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Sunday, 23 November 2014

Today was dog walking day. We took Harry out from his kennel and had adventures with Trevor. These are my favourite types of adventures.

I felt like the luckiest girl in the world yesterday. I have always wanted to watch New Zealand play, especially at my home stadium. It was an amazing day all watched from amazing seats. Whilst Wales didn't win, I still loved it.

Matt and I have joined a new gym, which has been opened by someone I used to work with. Hopefully this is the corner I needed to turn to get my fitness and motivation back.

It's almost Christmas!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I've been researching the best things I can use to kit out Basil and Rocky's cage. I want things that will stimulate them but things that will also stay clean. I've decided I will keep them on fleece blankets with a whole host of puppy pads and towels underneath. I have a couple of huge orders on their way to me, so will post about what I decided on. 

Coffee. Always coffee. 

Thornhill Farm Shop...

Wednesday, 5 November 2014

Saturday morning was done properly this weekend, I took my Nan out for breakfast at our local farm shop. We had a perfect morning where we caught up over a bacon baguette and a latte. 
We chatted for a good hour, watched the animals from the window and lapped up the delicious grub. I couldn't resist getting my camera out and heading down to the animal pen. In the cold morning air I had a lovely 5 minutes snapping away. the small things were appreciated. From the Farm Shop there are amazing views over Cardiff and I really had chance to gather my thoughts in the peace and quiet.