Holiday Essentials – Part 2

Following on from last weeks holiday essentials post part one, this is my next post looking at the things that will help your holiday go smoothly. These are the things that can help you stay healthy when you’re traveling, help you to find your suitcase amongst a sea of similar looking bags and most importantly, protect your skin when you are away.

Luggage Straps from Able Labels

I have a lovely floral suitcase that I find quite easily when it comes around on the conveyor belt. My hubby and son have grey cases that seem to go around and around as they look very similar to multiple other cases that are also moving around. The personalised luggage straps from Able Labels can help you to spot your case far more easier, and they look great and add another level of security too.

The luggage straps are a great gift idea if you have a friend who loves to travel, and they can be personalised with up to 30 letters and spaces. They come in two colour choices, and Able Labels offers discount on two or more straps.

Varta Power Slim Power Bank

Even on our holidays, we are never far away from our technology, particularly our phones, and we need these to be charged at all times in order to share our latest exploits on Instagram and Facebook. The Varta Slim Power Bank allows us to keep our phones and tablets charged, even as we are lounging by the pool, or waiting around the airport.

The Power bank can charge two devices at a time and also comes with a USB Type C outport to charge the latest smartphones.

Varta say:

The VARTA Slim Power Bank is a smart design, combining sophisticated style with technical precision. It’s packed with enough power to charge a phone two and half times over or one tablet fully.

Find out more information here.

Look after your holiday health

If there is one time of the year that you want to feel your best, it is when you are on holiday. But sometimes a combination of motion sickness when traveling, the germs that can be spread on aircraft and the dreaded bite of the mosquito’s when you arrive at your destination, can all combine to make you feel like taking to your bed,

But there are remedies that can help.

Ginger is well known for being an aid to sickness ( I remember eating ginger biscuits during pregnancy to stop the nausea). Gin Gins Super Ginger Caramel is the latest addition to The Ginger People’s range of ginger foods and sweets and are perfect for those who suffer from motion sickness. They are slightly chewy and  packed with 30% fresh ginger. You can find Gin Gins stocked at

ImmunPro is an infection defence that increases your resistance to viral infections by acting like a shield in your mouth and throat, helping your mucous membranes to fend off viruses.

Aeroplane journeys can often be a breeding ground for viruses due to the air and the confined space, there really is nowhere to escape when the person next to you starts coughing and sneezing. If you do tend to be susceptible to colds and coughs simply suck one tablet when you are at increased risk for two hours’ protection.

ImmunPro are available from Boots


If you are flying long haul, and have a sleep on the plane, you often wake up with less than fresh breath. SWISH TO GO are something that are definitely worth keeping in your hand luggage.

SWISH TO GO is the UK’s first 3-in-1 complete oral care solution that does the job of traditional toothbrush, paste and mouthwash but in a handy waterless, powder-based system that can be used anytime, anywhere.  The quick dissolving, natural powder turns to liquid on the tongue, where it can be swished for 10 seconds then swallowed to deliver cleaner teeth, healthier gums and long-lasting fresh breath wherever you are.This makes them perfect for planes, and also for camping and festivals too.

SWISH TO GO come in cool mint and lemon varieties, and can be found at Boots.

Nivea Sun Products

Of course, you can’t travel to the sun without taking adequate sun protection, and Nivea is one of the best brands if you suffer from sensitive skin, or if you are traveling with children. My favourite products are the sun sprays as these are easy to apply, and if you can also get one that is very water resistant, then you are protecting your child’s skin, even if they are splashing in and out of the pool.

Nivea have a great range of sun protection products for both adults and children, and these come in a range of SPF ranging from Factor 50 down. They also have nourishing and moisturising after sun ranges, as well as specific products for the face.

You can find a good range of Nivea products at Boots by clicking here.

Nail Polish from Cienna Rose

You are literally living in sandals and flip flops, so your toenails and fingernails deserve to be treated to some beautiful Summer colours. The floral inspired colours from Cienna Rose are just perfect for blending in with your holiday wardrobe.

The brand was founded by Carla Opoku, who, after moving to Africa, became interested in creating her own formulations using home blended colours. The Cienna Rose brand contains Pro vitamin B5, Vitamin E and Lemongrass oil helping to nourish your nails.The formulations are also vegan friendly and cruelty free. The colours are beautiful and the bottles are stunning.



Making Some Plans For The Summer

Happy 1st of May! With the coming of one of my favourite months, we can safely say that Summer is almost upon us, and can start making plans for those hazy, lazy, crazy days (yes, I am definitely keeping my fingers crossed and keeping my tongue firmly in check as I make that statement, but after a Winter filled with beasts, we are definitely due some beauty in the weather stakes.) As I am typing this, the sun is shining and it really seems like a good time to put some plans into place that will make the forthcoming season productive and successful.

There are certain things that are just better to do in Summer, so I have rounded up some of those things.

Sell Your Home

Summer is a great time to sell your home. Your garden is in full bloom. The sun is shining which always makes everything look brighter and better, and for people who want to move, living out of boxes is so much easier when the sun is shining. With the market in real estate currently improving, now could be a great time to get the estate agent in for a valuation, and you could start to make plans for that dream move. If you are not planning to move, but just want to give your home some sort of upgrade, again Summer, with its warmer temperatures, is the best time to get painting and decorating – having all those windows open is much better on a warm day, and is also a better time to look at more structural work like getting windows replaced, or having a loft conversion.

Start a Blog

The internet may be awash with blogs at the moment, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have a go at starting one yourself. A blog could be a great way of expressing yourself, sharing your opinions, or even sharing prose, poetry or short stories to a wider audience.

It could be an online diary that you use to share your summer travel stories , as Summer is definitely a time when you tend to travel more, and if you have beautiful photography you could also link it to an Instagram feed.

Blogs are something that anyone can do, and they come in a range of styles, from the very word orientated, to the more picture focused, and can be about anything from style, to lifestyle, parenting to sport. With the World Cup just a month away, maybe you could get your football obsessed youngster to start a football blog, or you could get your child to set up a free blog using a platform like WordPress to write the story of their summer holidays – perfect for those wet afternoons.

Travel and Explore

Summer is a wonderful time to travel and explore, and this can be traveling to new places both home and abroad. A Summer holiday is a great way to recharge the batteries and to relax, whilst a city break can help you get you cultural fix. But traveling doesn’t have to mean costing a fortune, nor does it have to involve getting on an aeroplane. So many people never look at the beauty in the place where they live, or enjoy their surroundings.

Look at your local area – there are museums you will never have visited, parks you have never spent time in, local walks and areas of interest that you probably pass in your car every single day on your way to work. On a nice sunny day, get out and explore and enjoy your local area – you might be surprised at what you may find.

Exploring Sandwell Priory

Cymer Abbey

A little retail therapy

As someone who is a little shopping obsessed, I think there is nothing better than a little retail therapy on a lovely Summer’s Day. But shopping does not have to mean an air conditioned shopping centre or mall, it can mean looking for antiques in a market town, browsing the many book stores in Hay on Wye, or, on a Sunday morning, a potter around a car boot sale in a farmer’s field. Combine it with a traditional Ploughman’s lunch in a Country pub and you have the makings of a perfect Summer’s day.

1940s themed market

Enjoying a car boot sale

What plans do you have this Summer?

Dreaming of Summer and Ice Cream

I just love Ice Cream. It is a fact that everyone close to me knows very well, I’ve even put it on my Twitter profile. Chocolate, toffee, caramel and coffee (made a rhyme there!) are my fave flavours, but I’m also very partial to Vanilla as long as it is Cornish, or mint choc chip too. Ice Cream Sundaes are definitely amongst my very favourite things, and now I seem to be passing this passion onto Joe. Check out the photographic evidence below for further proof.




Part of the charm of traditional ice cream is eating it from a van, in Summer sunshine. When I pay a visit to my mom’s on sunny afternoons, I also listen out for the chimes that come from Ben Whippy – the local ice cream man. Nothing beats a Mr Whippy cone with a flake and red juice all over it. Van Monster, who offer commercial vehicles for sale, think exactly the same, and in celebration of the cult of the ice cream van they have created this fun infographic that is just full of facts that I never knew. For instance, I never realised that Mr Whippy and Mr Softee had been around for so long. (Mr Softee hit the UK in 1959, with Walls developing Mr Whippy not long after in the early 1960s.)

I’m so looking forward to lazy days on the beach with a 99, but for now I will just enjoy reading about one of my favourite things.

Evo of Ice Cream Van (Slice1)

Evo of Ice Cream Van (Slice2)

Evo of Ice Cream Van (Slice3)

Evo of Ice Cream Van (Slice4)

Evo of Ice Cream Van (Slice5)

Evo of Ice Cream Van (Slice6)