My reviews

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This post is written in collaboration with Tesco Compare home insurance who aim to find you a competitive quote from a range of providers, ensuring you get the best deal for your family home and its contents.

As you know we’ve been working really hard on our house recently. We’ve laid a new floor and all the rooms are getting an introduction of colour and a few new pieces of furniture. It feels wonderful to see it coming together and slowly turning into the family home we are dreaming of. Making my house and my surroundings beautiful are so important to me, not only because I am a very visual person who is sensitive to their surroundings but also because it is the place I spend the most time with my family and friends and I want it to be warm, cosy, fun and friendly.

The kitchen truly is the heart of the family home in my world. It is where you will find us eating together, cooking together, drawing together and welcoming friends and family with a nice cup of tea. We are lucky to have quite a spacious kitchen in the new house but up until recently is was nothing but a big empty space and a very white wall. The room definitely needed a focal point and somewhere for us to sit!

As part of our mission to make the house more of a family home we decided to move our dining room table into the kitchen. It was so important to Littlelish and I to have somewhere to sit together to do things like homework and for us all to have somewhere to eat informally as a family.

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Once we had the table in place it was time to look for some suitable kitchen chairs. I knew what I had in mind, something contemporary, practical and fun, that wouldn’t break the bank. Eventually we found a gorgeous fresh, contemporary chair with a white plastic seat which works perfectly in a kitchen space frequented by little sticky hands. It has some great wooden legs which match with the table and at £49 from Tesco Direct they were a steal!

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kitchen-table

We painted the wall Fossil grey by Dulux which we decided was a nice base shade that we could use as a backdrop for any accent colours we might want to introduce. I finished the wall off with a display of photographs, artwork and drawings from Littlelish. Just a little collection of things that make us smile every morning as we eat our breakfast :)

pictures-on-wall

Our kitchen has been transformed into a useable family room and we are making much better use of the space that we had available. The overall makeover may not be completely finished, I’m still thinking of adding some more colour into the room, perhaps some more blue to match with our dinner service and some shelves to house our cookery books which are currently piled up on the floor but we are very nearly there!

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blue-cups

Disclosure: Tesco Compare provided us with the lovely chairs for review and helped to make our house that bit more a home :) We will absolutely be looking into insuring the contents of our home against accidental damage, you never know what can happen in a house with a 4 year old and a new puppy!

creative-cricut

A what? What is this Cricut mini I speak of (I must admit I had never heard of one either)? Well it is only something really, super, duper cool for all those who love crafting like I do!

Ok how to explain, a cricut mini looks like a printer only it doesn’t print, it cuts… paper, card, vinyl and iron on transfer material into pretty much anything you could imagine. It comes with computer software which you upload onto your PC or MAC.

You create a design in the online craftroom by using all kind of fonts and images, select ‘cut’ and the Cricut gets to work cutting out your intricate design / font / pattern with it’s tiny blade. I’ve often wondered how on earth to the make such intricate paper cut art / perfect iron on transfers / beautiful cut out cards that I would so love to make but did not have a clue how. The Cricut is the answer!

designing-cricut

So when the team at Cricut asked if I would be interested in reviewing a Cricut, I have to admit I might have squealed a little bit! The thought of being able to make such beautiful things at the push of a button (well using a bit of creativity and handy work of course) was very exciting. I couldn’t decide what to make first, I had so many ideas buzzing round my head.

I decided to give the iron on transfer a go and customise the new curtain I had just sewn for Littlelish’s high sleeper. Installing the software was very easy, it was just a case of following the instructions and then I set to work designing. The Cricut mini works with cartridges which you can also upload to your online workroom. These cartridges hold all the images and fonts you need to create a design. I wanted to create the word ‘imagine’ so I fond a suitable font and began laying out the letters.

letters-on-cricut

I soon realised it wasn’t possible to lay the word out in order, I wanted to maximise the amount of letters I could get onto my A4 piece so I arranged them cleverly to all fit on one page as you can see in my photo. It was time to turn the Cricut mini on. I had to stick the vinyl I wanted cutting out onto the Cricut mini mat which is like a sticky mat that keeps whatever it is you are cutting in place. Super straightforward. Then I loaded the mat and pressed cut and watched the machine work it’s magic. It was literally done in less than a minute.

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Peeling the letters back off the sticky mat took a little longer and was a little bit fiddly, but with a bit of patience and some wiggling, I had my iron on letters. I believe you can buy a special cricut tool to make this job easier, nevertheless it was possible without it. I laid the letters onto my fabric and followed the iron on instructions. Within 5 – 10 mins, the curtain was complete!

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iron-on-letters

And here is the finished article, what do you think? I love it and so did Littlelish. She went straight into her ‘den’ after school yesterday and only came out at dinner time!

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imagine-curtain

The possibilities for creativity are literally endless with the cricut. I have a very long list of ‘things to make’ with my new machine; wall stickers, cards, upcycled plant pots etc etc. For some more Cricut inspiration check out their Pinterest boards.

Disclaimer: I was sent the Cricut mini to review but all opinions are honest and very much my own.

It is a familiar scene this time of year, delivery man knocks on the door, a parcel for you! Or most likely one of your online purchases arriving…

Only this time last week, it was a present for meee! Honestly, you would have laughed if you could see how excited I was to open the box containing a new…. wait for it…… vacuum cleaner!

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Oh yes, I’m afraid it has got to the stage that I am excited about getting a new hoover! In all fairness though, it isn’t just any hoover, it is a Dyson and I have been lusting after one for years, years I tell you. Finally I have one of my very own thanks to our rubbish vacuum cleaner giving up the ghost.

We have beige carpets in our house, even in the hallway, which combined with a rubbish hoover makes for a very sad Mummylish. No matter how hard I hoovered, the carpet didn’t look any better and boy was it hard work.

So now into my life, comes the beautifully designed queen of the hoover (she should be female I think), my Dyson DC39. Opening the box felt like Christmas day had come early, how could I possibly be so excited to open a vacuum cleaner? But believe me I was! It took all of 2 minutes to assemble it and I was off!

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My Dyson is everything I’ve dreamed of, with minimum effort required from me, she is in control, moves beautifully and with purpose. Solid and wellbuilt without being heavy, she is a hoover on a mission, sucking up everything and anything in her way.

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The specially designed head which is created to instantly adapt to all types of flooring is amazing. We can use it on the carpet, on the tiles in the kitchen and it stays firmly stuck to the floor. Not only did it pick up all surface debris but it also collected all kinds of dust and dirt (yuck) which is a noticeable change from our old vacuum cleaner.

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I  love the extra tools you get with it which means I can easily vacuum my skirting boards and door frames, bannisters and stairs. It also has a great feature, a little trigger button that you can press to release some air which means you can hoover mats, rugs and curtains without them getting sucked up and bunched up. So I can basically hoover my entire house, every last unreachable bit of it!

Dyson darling, you have made me very happy this Christmas :) :) We got our Dyson cleaner here at Argos…

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