Home & Money || Don't Take The Risk....

In my local area, there have been numerous break-ins, thefts and random acts of vandalism. While this may seem pretty normal, for my area it's really not and you know, that worries me. I do get anxious about my house being broken into or my car being damaged [again]. It was only a few months back that our shed was broken into, granted there wasn't much but still my son's scooters were in there, the lawnmower and some toys that were all as new. We didn't have insurance. We lost out. We had just moved house and were covered in our last property but you just never think it's going to happen to you and so I presumed holding off would be fine.

Now I can't stop worrying about it and so I'm on the hunt for new insurance providers - hopefully. my shed break in and my search for reliable providers that cover the items that may get stolen helps you in the long run. My aim is to find providers that will save me money in the long run, will cover my goods and won't cause hassle if the worst happens - gosh I sound like a TV advert now don't I?

Whether it’s home insurance, car insurance or, even pet insurance. Here are some of my current tips to get insured without breaking the bank.

numbers, money, calculating
Consider what’s most important to you

To ensure you find cheap insurance, you need to consider what is most important that you need the cover for. If you feel like you wouldn’t need a courtesy car, for example, you could easily take this off so that you will get cheaper insurance. Or you may want third party insurance rather than fully comprehensive which will also result in a cheaper bill. Whatever insurance you are taking out, check the policy and decide if there are any extras you could take off which will save you some money.

Fill out details correctly

Another way you can make sure that your insurance is as cheap as possible is to make sure you fill out the details correctly. So for home insurance, you need to ensure you put the right amount the house is worth if you want to keep it down. If you just guess, you could end up putting the insurance up higher than it should be. Make sure you fill out details such as date of birth correctly as this could affect your bill. You should also ensure you make sure you put your job role down correctly as well, as this can affect your insurance as well.

Compare deals

You can also keep insurance down by making sure you are switching insurers when necessary. If you stick with the same insurer year after year, they will keep slowly putting your insurance up and won’t be offering you the best deals. Use compare sites to ensure you are getting the cheapest deals available to you. If you aren’t, it’s time to switch provider and reap the benefits. Check what’s covered in your contents insurance. It might be cheaper to get separate insurance for bikes such as comprehensive cycle insurance, which covers you in the case of theft or vandalism.

Keep it safe

To ensure you get the cheapest insurance possible, you need to be making an effort to look like you are keeping the house or car safe. Install burglar alarms and window locks so that you can put that on there to show you are trying to deter burglars. Get a car alarm and also a steering wheel lock so thieves won’t be able to take your car. Adding these when you are applying for your insurance will go in your favour and will keep costs down.

Use it less

Another way you can keep insurance down is to make sure you are using it less. For example, when you are getting car insurance, and you say you are using it to do thousands of miles a year, it’s bound to be higher. Therefore, start walking more and it will keep the bill down as you are using the car less.

Hopefully, these tips will help you save money that you can spend on other things for your family.

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Professional Home Style || 5 Interior Design Tips

Updating your interior design is exciting. Your home is like a blank canvas. You can explore your personality and creativity, and experiment. Sometimes, though, the blank canvas can be daunting. There are so many ways you can update your home. How do you know where to start? Follow the experts and style your home like a pro.

1. Be Inspired

Before you begin, gather some inspiration. Look at professional designer portfolios. Sites such as deBretton.com.au are invaluable because you can browse through their commercial projects to pick up hints and tips that can be used in all types of homes - not just ones suited to the rich and famous.

Design blogs and sites like Pinterest are useful. Create a board for each room of your home and pin like crazy. And don’t forget magazines. These are a great source of style tips and innovation. Compile a folder or scrapbook of your ideas.

2. Know Your Theme

A good place to start is with what is in place already. What do you like about your property that you could build on? If you have an ultra modern home, it might make sense to follow this aesthetic. Similarly, if you have a vintage home, you may want to keep the traditional features in place and work around them. Use the architectural features to inform the design.


3. What Is Your Style?

What is your style? What look appeals to you most? You’re going to be living with the design each day and so being comfortable with the outcome is important. So decide what colours you like. Do you like feminine or minimal styles? Are you luxe or shabby chic?

4. Use Light Wisely

Light is important. During the planning stages, decide how this will work in your home. If the natural light is minimal, decide how you can make the most of the this. And find ways to enhance it. There are lots of blog articles on how to achieve this, such as post from Pop Sugar:Tips for Brightening Dark Rooms.

Keep windows as open as possible to maximise the daylight. Keep curtains light. Avoid placing furniture in front of windows. Similarly, in the garden, avoid planting trees and large bushes in front of the window. When deciding on artificial lighting, start by considering the function of each room. Your lighting choices should support and enhance this. Avoid common pitfalls.

5. Choosing Colour

Colour sets the mood of a room. When making colour decisions, think about how you want the room to ‘feel.’ Are you looking for something vibrant and full of energy? Or, do you prefer a calming, more serene mood? A simple, classic look will last for longer. Bold, quirky decisions may be great in the short term. But once that trend has passed, it may soon feel dated. This is fine if you intend to make lots of regular updates. But if not, it is best to opt for a design that will date well.

Use samples to see which colours work best in each room. Try a few different shades and look at them at different times of the day. Use the colours in light and dark areas of the room to see how well they work. Once you have gathered ideas and made a start, the process becomes easier. With the basics in place, you can have fun building on the mood and style of the rooms. And remember, nothing is forever. If you really do hate that paint colour, you can always paint over it.

So, be bold, experiment, and have fun.

Father's Day || Celebrations

Happy Father's Day! 

Wishing you all the most amazing day and this really does go out to all dad's, those that have taken on the role as daddy, those who have passed to heaven, those who are alive and every other person out there who are raising kiddies.

Today my little brood are celebrating hubster and all the fantastic things he does every.single. day. Typically we celebrate low-key - a card, a small random gift, a good home cooked meal and family time. For us that's far more important than anything extravagant however, over the last twelve months we have been through hell as a family unit and you know, hubster has been our rock throughout, he'd tell you ''it's his job'' but you know, not many people would stay so calm and rock steady throughout. He's seriously amazing, incredible, supportive, selfless and he really amazes me every single day so this year we decided to celebrate him that little bit more.

Yesterday we headed out to Livingstone to check out the shops - this year we were going a bit more upscale with our gifting purely because there was a few things we knew that hubster had coveted for a while and he wouldn't buy himself (again due to being selfless, he'd much rather purchase something for the boys or me). The first was a Superdry hoody. Personally I don't see the appeal with Superdry - it's overpriced and very bland but hubster had spotted one he really wanted and hadn't purchased it. He'd been coveting one for around six months, so you know, it was clear it was something he really wanted. The second item we knew he wanted or at least loved was the Deadpool movie. the boys also wanted to pick up a Flash, Funko Pop Vinyl - hub is a huge Marvel and more so, Flash fan.

In the end, we did pick up the grey Superdry hooded top which was around £50 (crazy right??), the Deadpool DVD for £9.99 - but - instead of the Pop! which we couldn't find in the Flash design, we opted for the Lush Father's Day charity gift. Basically the boys got the opportunity to be hands on with the creation of a bath bomb. They wrote a message to daddy which was rolled up and popped into the middle of their bomb. Along with the bomb came the small tub of Charity Hand & Body Cream all for £3.50. Bargain! The proceeds of course going to charity which made it even more special. Hubster doesn't use bath bombs but honestly I know he's going to love this gift more than any of the others as the boys actually made this themselves.

While our gifts were splurges we are well aware that this isn't something we'll be capable of every year. Not with birthdays, the car MOT coming up and then of course Christmas. I tend to get really stressed out when it comes to forward planning but a few friends did advise that Ocean loans are a great reliable provider for handling this sort of situation if it comes to it and we're strapped.

I'll close just now as we're away out for the day, hubster's just about to open his gift and, no doubt we'll be enjoying the hilarity that is Ryan Reynolds as Deadpool later on this evening.

Wishing you all the most amazing day guys! I'll let you know what hubster thought tomorrow.

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British Flower Week || Injecting summer Into Our Lives

British Flower week has been running all week and ends today. I was challenged by Four Walls to discuss how I inject flowers into my own life - it was barely a challenge because flowers are something I believe should be in everyone's lives. As a pagan and all round nature lover, flowers are important to me all throughout the year, even my sons prefer having fresh flowers in the house. 

I really wanted to show you my newest flowery purchase but it didn't turn up on time (hence the late posting) but, here are some of our floral purchased over the last few months. I don't really have a specific flower preference, I tend to go for the colours and shapes more than one type of flower family - thistles, heather's, cactuses, sage, herbs, aloe plants, grasses and tulips have been on the top of my buying list lately but, I'm easy to convert so if you have a favourite flower, flower shop or flower bunch please let me know guys. 

Thistles are gorgeous. I love how they're a mixture of feminine and masculine. Being Scottish I feel an affinity to these flowers. The ones pictured above were dried but they still look pretty fantastic don't they. The lilies were a Mother's Day purchase but we typically have to snip out the pollen stems as my eldest son is allergic. In all honesty lilies were our go to flower, that is until we had children. The gerberas were the most gorgeous shade of fuchsia so warrant this flower selfie, I believe this was a £3.99 bunch from ASDA's or Morrison's. 

The cactuses again were an ASDA purchase - I purchased these at a low point when my depression had come back. Weirdly these little cuties made me feel happy, who would have ever thought that something so prickly and unobtrusive could make a difference? Music, flowers, colours all help towards improving my health when depression hits. I know many others feel the same way, this is even more excuse to have these things in my life.

Tulips! nothing says spring and summer like a gorgeous bunch of tulips. The colours are absolutely amazing, I still remember my sons buying these for me, not for any reason other than they knew I loved them. How cute is that...? This summer we will be adding to our garden, we recently re-turfed which has been an absolute bitch over the last six weeks, I had no idea there was so much work into ensuring the turf survives. At least now we have a blank canvas to work with. The coloured heathers in the main photo are being considered, small vegetables and herbs. I'm just so undecided but if you have any recommendations give me a shout.

Plants not only look wonderful, they have the ability to heal, soothe and I suppose kill if you want to take it to the extreme. Similarly colours have the ability to heal and soothe as does perfume. Well colours + perfume = flowers! Adding flowers in all variations will improve your life, I swear on it.

Ways to bring flowers into your life: 

🚩Bouquets | Fresh flowers or ones cut from your garden. Remember weeds are just un-marketed flowers and look equally beautiful in a bunch.

🚩Interiors | Fabrics and textiles are the easiest ways to get flowers into your life, however, you can go full on flower power with your furniture or wallpaper too. If you're not so brave cushions, floral scented candles, linen sprays or lighting are a great option.

🚩Garden & Exteriors | This is a no brainer really given this is where they grow however you can add more by using super cute pots, troughs and planters with varied flower types to really boost your mood and health. I recommend covering all areas - herbs, wild flowers, gorgeous coloured flowers, succulents and flowers for bees, oh don't forget your veggies - a small potato pot is all you need to start growing fresh potatoes.

🚩 Houseplants | OK so this is something you maybe scared about. I'll put my hands up right now and tell you I have a tendency to kill houseplants, even the ones that are seemingly indestructible. I since found out it's because hubster was also watering them. I would recommend aloe plants, cactuses, spider plants or even miniature fruit trees to get you started.

🚩Fashion | It's hard not to find a floral print on the high street, keeping in mind you can still wear your normal clothing but add a small amount of floral with items such as a cardigan, a scarf, a belt or even just a top with a hint of floral bias tape on the edges. If you don't like floral prints why not opt for floral shaped accessories?

What's your favourite flowers, did you celebrate British Flower Week in any way? Here's hoping my latest mini tree arrives this week....

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