Sunday, 29 September 2013


Always trust your gut. 
It knows what your head hasn't yet figured out. 

Never ignore your intuition. 
I did and I seriously wish I hadn't. 
Pay attention, your gut feelings are shouting at you for good reason. Listen! 

Ask Yourself

Everything in the universe is within you. 
Ask all from yourself. 
~ Rumi 

Duck 3 in 1 Toilet Clip with Glade Fragrance Purple Wave

This afternoon 125 photos were accidentally deleted from my iPhone. :( 
I was disappointed that I'd lost the images, so it seemed apt to rip open a toilet smelly to give the loo a pleasant aroma with every flush. 
My photos may have well been flushed down the loo, which is what reminded me that the loo thingy we bought ages ago was still in its packet, and not in the loo. 

Actually I say we bought, but it was Mr.R who got it during a solo shopping trip to Asda. 
Anyway, despite not usually using them, because many years ago a plumber me told me he absolutely loves them because they keep him employed and earn him lots of money; they are prone to sliding off of the toilet bowl rim and getting flushed which blocks the loo etc. I wanted one. 
Why? Because I'm a loon, and no matter how much I clean the loo in our house I don't think it's properly clean, so I thought a little extra help from lots of powerful chemicals may help. 

OCD is a pain sometimes, which is why I won't be stopping with just the loo cleaner thingy, I'll be buying a new loo seat too, just as soon as I can find one I like, which so far after much searching I haven't been able to do. 

Er, ahh, yes, as often happens I have completely lost focus on what I intended to write. 
This was supposed to be a short, couple of lines, blog post about a loo cleaner. Haha!
So, yes, the loo cleaner we bought is called Duck 3 in 1 Toilet Clip with Glade Fragrance Purple Wave. 

The packet says, 3 in 1 ~ 
The new cleaning formula leaves a flush activated protective shield that repels limescale. 
1. It cleans with every flush
2. Fights limescale, prevents the build-up of limescale
3. Long lasting freshness, fragrances for up to 4 weeks

I doubt very much if the Duck 3 in 1 Toilet Clip with Glade Fragrance Purple Wave will last 4 days let alone 4 weeks, because we flush our loo a lot. 
But however long it lasts, I'm hoping its under-the-rim action will help convince me that the loo is properly clean. 
I just wish the soil pipe hadn't been installed at a strange odd angle because I'd have replaced the loo when we bought the house, that way I'd have been certain the loo was thoroughly clean. 

So far the Duck 3 in 1 Toilet Clip with Glade Fragrance Purple Wave smells ok, and hopefully it is getting the loo extra clean. 

I'm not uploading a photo of the Duck 3 in 1 toilet cleaner in situ because I didn't take one. 
It's nothing to look at and ~ 
I couldn't risk dropping my phone down the loo. ;) :o

Friday, 27 September 2013

Kettle Crisps ~ Sea Salt & Balsamic Vinegar

Mmm, crisps!

What is it about crisps? 
They're so tasty, and hard to resist. 
Maybe it's the fact they're full of fat and salt? ;) :o

We usually eat proper food, not processed crap, not that I'm saying Kettle crisps are crap. 
But sometimes we get a craving for crisps, and we both like the extra crispy crisps that are Kettle crisps. 
Actually, the packet says Kettle Chips, but as I am not American, and I don't reside in the US of A, I refuse to call them chips. ;)

I like salt 'n vinegar crisps, Mr.R prefers plain crisps. 
This time I got what I wanted, we bought a packet of Sea Salt and Balsamic Vinegar Kettle Crisps. 
They're yummy! 

We don't eat them every day, or every week, or even every month, so when the craving for crisps arises, we don't feel bad about feeding it. 
Feeding it a big bag of extra crispy crisps. 

I didn't add a photo of the actual crisps, cos we scoffed them all. :)

Thank you Kettle! 

What's your favourite flavour of crisps?  

Tub Stickers ~ Ducks

Duck, non slip bath stickers. 

I recently bought some plain strips of anti-slip stickers for the bath. I didn't like them.
So I bought some more, this time little yellow duck stickers. I like them.

The sticker are from Slip Doctors, there's 5 in the pack. The ducks look like ducks, well, a typical rubber duck type of duck, and they're bright and cheerful. 
We love ducks! 

Putting the new stickers in the bath was simple. 
Clean the bath throughly, to make sure there's no shampoo, oil residue etc. 
Once the bath is dry, and before removing the paper backing, place the stickers in your desired position. 
Then when you're happy with were you've put the anti-slip bath stickers, remove the paper backing and stick down firmly. Make sure you press all around the edges of the stickers. 

That's it! 
No more danger of slipping whilst showering. 
My clumsiness is not a problem, thanks to my new bath tub stickers. 
Quack! Quack! :) 

Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Furniture Shopping in Ikea

 Having recently decided to end our World travels and settle down again, we bought a house. 
A house which needed furniture. So, once again we went shopping, for furniture. 

The last time we purchased furniture was over 10 years ago, for our home in the South of France.

When we went furniture shopping for our last home, we purchased absolutely everything, and anything we fancied.
There was no expense spared as we searched for and purchased lots of products from various brands including, Bugatti, Stokke, Philippe Starck, Kartell, Alessi, and Steiner.  

This time our budget was much smaller. This time furniture shooping was not fun, it was perfunctory, it was a chore to get over with as soon as possible, we wanted basic, cheap stuff. 
So we chose to get what we needed at Ikea. No more 'designer' pieces for us. 
Actually I seriously dislike the word designer in reference to expensive items, mainly because it's nonsense. Technically everything is 'designer', even a manhole cover, as it has been designed by a someone. 

Anyway, back to our furniture shopping experience. 
No more 'designer' goods for us. We didn't get to explore shops full of lovely, shiny, high-end items. 
This time we kept it real and went to hell, aka Ikea. ;) 

I am joking, sort of, I don't really have anything against Ikea, per se. Although after recently reading that the founder of Ikea, Ingvar Kamprad is worth more than 50 billion quid, I did feel that maybe he didn't need my hard earned shekels. ;) :o
But as we are now living a completely different life to our old life in France, small, cheap 'n cheerful furniture is adequate. 

We chose Ikea mainly because it's a one-stop-shop, you can get everything you need in the one place and not have to schlep around searching for furniture that you don't really like or want anyway. 
We wanted to furnish the house as quickly and cheaply as possible, without stress. Ikea was the best option. 

Before we went to the Gateshead branch of Ikea we'd already chosen the majority of the items we intended to buy by scrolling through their website. The main reason we did this was to ensure we spent as little time in Ikea as possible, as neither of us like shopping of any kind. Well, apart from shopping for luxury goods. Hehe! ;) 
Once in the shop itself it was just a matter of checking that we still liked the look of the things we'd decided on. 
The shop opened at 10am for viewing, 11am for shopping. We arrived early so chose to have breakfast in the restaurant. 
Eating breakfast was the best part of our trip to Ikea, not because the food was particularly good, but because it meant we weren't shopping for flat pack furniture. ;) 

Ikea shopping was nowhere near as pleasurable as the shopping we did for our French house. But we gritted our teeth and got on with it. 
The products we'd chosen from the website were fine in the flesh, so we found an assistant who typed everything in to a computer, and then handed us a shopping list to take to the check-out for payment. 

We may not have enjoyed our shopping experience in Ikea, but at least we'd furnished our new house for a lot less than our old house, about £70k less. Ridiculous! 

Despite not having to look for a sofa, kitchen units, wardrobe, tables, chairs etc. we were in Ikea for a couple of hours. No idea why? :(
We were both very pleased once we'd paid for our stuff and eager to get outside to the fresh air. 

Furniture ordered, and paid for, it was just a matter of waiting a couple of weeks for delivery. 

As soon as we received our Ikea furniture, minus the sofa, (which had been put on the wrong delivery truck) I got busy assembling it all. 
I actually quite enjoy self assembly furniture. It's good seeing flat pack turn in to something you can lay down on, which is always appreciated after time spent screwing.......... 

Rather than hinder me, OCD actually helped me for once, as the first thing I did for every piece of furniture was to set out all of the screws, dowels etc. in neat little lines. This definitely made assembling the furniture easier and quicker. 

Mr.R wasn't idle while I worked away churning out the fully assembled pieces of furniture, he was busy cooking, and doing various other things. 

I'm not a fast worker, I'm more suited to being a shirker ;) but with an Allen Key in one hand and a screwdriver in the other, it wasn't too long before I'd assembled all of our new Ikea furniture. 

I probably could have assembled everything much quicker, but I kept stopping to take photos and shoot a few videos. 
If there's no photographic evidence, it didn't happen. ;) :o

Disclaimer ~ In the end I chose not to add photos of most of the furniture simply because it's not that interesting, and everyone knows what Ikea stuff looks like anyway. I uploaded the random shots I took of screws, Allen keys etc. Yep, I know, it's exciting stuff. :o 
Also we recently got a new dog, and he prefers my attention to be on him not my gadgets, which explains why the photos are not all the same size etc. 
It's the dogs fault, he didn't eat my homework, but he is more fun than editing photos. ;) :)

What's your opinion of Ikea, if you have one. 
Do you love, or loathe it? 

Never Forgotten

There are some who bring a light so bright in to the World
That even after they have gone the light remains.

Barley the Lurcher

After our recent travels we'd been looking forward to being properly settled so that we could get a dog. 

Last Friday we went to the Stray Aid Rescue Centre ( 
and came home with a new member of our family. 
We adopted a Lurcher cross. 
Meet Barley! 

We love dogs. Do you? 

History of Easington Colliery

We love walking. We love the sea. 
Fortunately we live right by the sea, which is also close to a large area of countryside which has miles and miles of coastal walks. 

Easington Colliery is a former mining village. It's now a popular place for walkers, especially dog walkers. 
On a clear day the views are stunning, but even in foggy weather the area is still a pleasant place to walk. 

Now our house is pretty much finished, and there's not much more work to do on it, we've been more inclined to get outside, and having recently adopted a dog from Stray Aid Rescue Centre ( we've been out and about enjoying the local scenery a lot more, with lots of lovely long walks. 

A part of the Durham coastal walk, which is only a couple of minutes from our house, is a path leading up to a mine lift monument. 

Along the walk on the ground are plaques charting some of the history of Easington Colliery. The plaques are thought provoking, they stopped us in our tracks, literally. 

As we walked along the path it was hard to imagine what it was like when it was a working colliery, and especially hard to imagine what it would have been like during the miners strike. 

But stopping to read all of the historical makers, and just standing still while the words sunk in, we felt a real sense of the history of Easington Colliery. 

Monday, 23 September 2013

Bubba Classic 20oz Insulated Travel Mug

I had been looking for an insulated mug for ages, but couldn't find one I liked. 
Then one day whilst shopping in Asda I saw what looked like the perfect insulated mug. 

It was a Bubba brand, Classic 20oz, Insulated Travel Mug.

The label said it kept drinks hot and cold, 6/10 hours. 
It wasn't ridiculously expensive like a lot of the insulations cups I'd seen, so I purchased it. 

The label also said:
  • Dual-walled polyurethane (exterior & interior) with foam insulation (BPA free), and stainless steel exterior band
  • Keeps cold beverages cold, and hot beverages hot for hours
  • Tough and durable construction featuring ergonomically designed handle with soft touch TPE grip

  • remember writing a product review on a consumer website about my new Bubba insulated travel mug, how much l liked it, and how good it was. 
    Trouble is, when I wrote that product review I'd only ever used the mug indoors, where it was always placed on a completely flat surface. 
    I didn't really intend to use the mug at home, as the main reason I'd wanted an insulated mug was for the car, which is the main purpose of this mug - it says it in the title, 'travel'. 

    It was when I finally used my new Bubba mug in the car that my opinion of it went from 10 out of 10 to zero. 
    Thankfully I'd only filled the travel mug with cold water because it had leaked the entire contents all over the floor of the car. 
    I'd put the Bubba travel mug in the footwell, it had obviously fallen over, and spewed the water all over the carpet. So, as I said, thankfully it was only water because at least it didn't damage the carpet, make it all sticky, and cause a nasty smell. 

    Maybe it's me being an eejit, but surely a 'travel' mug, that has a lid, should have a proper seal to stop the liquid contents spilling out. 

    I don't understand why this Bubba mug doesn't have a proper seal. Why make a product with a lid that may as well not have a lid?

    The  Bubba Classic 20oz Insulated Travel Mug is crap!
    There's no use for it, and the only place for it is the bin. 
    Very disappointed. :(