Happy House Sharing Anniversary to us.

 

It’s exactly a year today that two arguably sane females took a leap of faith and decided to share a house together. One of them was me, and it could all have gone horribly wrong, but thankfully it didn’t.  And I’m here to reassure any ‘mature’ female, who through either choice or circumstance is thinking of doing the same thing, that house sharing ticks so many boxes for so many reasons.

two packets of tea

Tea for Two

I found my housemate on a website called http://spareroom.com.  She had recently bought the house that we now share, and with plenty of space, it seemed a good financial idea to advertise her……well…. spare room!

After our initial website contact, we began texting, a phone call followed, and then I popped round to see her one Saturday afternoon.  She was friendly and easy going, but obviously needed to be sure that I was someone she would be happy to share her space with.  Not only that, but I had baggage in the shape of a large 4 legged, scruffy pooch.

But a deal was struck and a year ago today, while she was at work, I moved my life into her house and we’ve never looked back.

Our neighbours have commented that we are always laughing, which is true, and there is also a lot of swearing. Always nice to have a living life balance!

House sharing with anyone is all about consideration and being flexible. My housemate and I are very different, but it is those differences which makes us compatible.   We dance around each other in the kitchen, she drinks shite Chia tea, whilst I make a proper brew.  I make one pot dinners affectionately referred to as ‘coddles’, while she faffs around making home made turkey burgers.  TURKEY BURGERS, I ask you, what fresh hell are those?

That’ll be mine on the left then.

We oversee each others laundry, clearing radiators and folding up as we go.  I load the dishwasher and she unloads it, we play to our strengths. She kindly turns a blind eye to the trail of clothes and shoes I leave laying around and she regularly hoovers up a Dyson’s worth of spare dog hair.  Whilst I smile to myself at the way she uses the biggest baking tray in the history of cooking, to bake 10 sweet potato fries.  I’ve introduced her to ice cubes, she’s converted me to Molton Brown.

 

My boy Buddy!

The one thing we are totally united on though is my dog Buddy.  I couldn’t wish for anyone to be more loving and caring towards my dog than my housemate. She looks after him at weekends while I go to work, and from being a complete stranger to me a year ago, I now trust her implicitly with my most treasured possession.

So if you find yourself without a roof over your head, for whatever reason, house sharing might just be the answer for you too.

 

 

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW AS A NEW PUPPY MUMMY

Sausage dog on a boardwalk.

Dogs are like children!

When you get a pet, your life changes. It’s kind of like having a baby but instead you are a new puppy Mummy.  Sure, you aren’t awake all through the night, and you don’t have to take this little one everywhere with you, but when you have a puppy, there is some work involved. And it’s handy to know both what you should expect and what you can do to make things easier on yourself. Taking care of a dog is a lot of work. But it’s also a lot of fun too. As long as you know what you do and you’re focusing on what keeping your puppy happy, you’re on track. So, to help you with that, let’s take a look at five things you need to know when you become a new puppy Mummy!

Training

First of all, there’s training. And you will want to start this right away. Because not only do you have toilet training to do, but there’s also the idea of working on training their behavior too. Now, with toilet training, they will get there. Yes, there will be accidents, but you need to let things go and just persist. But, when it comes to behaviour training, you may want to take them to classes for this if you’re not too sure what you should do.

Products

Now, when it comes to the products you need, you need to make sure that they will be happy and comfortable in your home. Whether you want to go for luxury pet products or something budget, it doesn’t matter. Whatever suits you best is fine. But you will need a bed for them, bowls for food and water, grooming products, toys, and a lead too. These are the basics, but you could also look to get treats or other fun extras for them too.

puppy laying on a blanket.

Puppy Snuggles

Care

From here, you will then want to make sure that they are cared for and that their health is perfect. You will need to find a vet, like www.easipetcare.com, near to you that you like and trust. Make sure that they get their initial checkups and that they have yearly check-ups from then on in, just to keep them healthy.

Food

You should also try to get the balance right between feeding your pup enough and not over feeding them too. This is where your vet can help, as they can make sure that they are always in a healthy weight range.

Exercise

But then also, it’s really important for you to be thinking about what kind of exercise your dog needs. Because they all need to be walked, yet some breeds will need more and others will need less. You can do a ton of research of this online, using sites like www.rover.com, to find out what will work best. But you can also speak to your vet and get their personal recommendations too. And then, you should start to get a sense of the kind of exercise that they need personally too.

 

 

WHY YOU SHOULD SAY NO TO THE FLU VACCINE

I’ve never had a flu jab in my life, and I never will. But does my decision make me a potential burden to the NHS, if I succumb to the flu through my own negligence, and consequently need to see a Doctor, or even worse, be hospitalised. Frankly, I’ll take my chances on that one, but here are just a few reasons why you should say no to the flu vaccine.

Here are the scenes at my local surgery at around 11.00 am last Sunday,  where people were queuing to have an injection to prevent something that will probably not happen.

There they stood confirming their support to the NHS, and on exiting, almost courageously fist pumping their bravery, albeit with a slightly sore arm.

 

People queueing for a flu jab

The Flu Jab rush.

By the law of averages, I’d hazard a guess that within the queue, there may have been more than one person who might describe themselves as allergic to pollen as it gives them a runny nose, perhaps one or two who couldn’t eat dairy as it upsets their stomach, some who wouldn’t touch shellfish as just looking at a prawn makes them feel sick. Yet, whilst all of these people won’t go near these perfectly natural things, they were still happy to offer their body up to be injected with some of the following chemicals.

  • Formaldehyde
  • Aluminium
  • Aborted Fetal DNA
  • Fetal Bovine DNA

I think you’ll agree it’s a heady mix, and the above is only the tip of the iceberg.  However every year when the banner goes up outside the local surgery, offering free flu jabs, people put blind faith in what they are told and can’t wait to be first in the queue.

Doctors recommend that people get flu jabs to boost their immune system and prevent getting them flu. However, flu vaccines have been shown to be highly ineffective and toxic for humans.

Such reassuring ingredients

AND WHAT ABOUT SHEDDING?

Viral shedding means that those who are vaccinated breathe out more influenza virus and spread it more than the unvaccinated. So when your surgery offers the vaccine by telling you “the vaccine protects you and those around you,” it is simply not true.

What they are actually doing is ‘selling’ the vaccine to you, which generates vast income for the giant pharmaceutical companies.

Viral shedding also means that those who are vaccinated are spreading more virus into the air around them just by breathing compared to those who have not had the vaccine that same year and/or the flu vaccine from the previous year.

The implication is that those who are vaccinated are a greater risk to the vulnerable, such as cancer patients, the elderly and the very young, AND that the unvaccinated spread the disease LESS and protect others better!

I know which side I’d rather be on!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DESIGNING A BEDROOM FOR YOUR GRANDCHILDREN

childs bed with a teddy bear.

Create a special bedroom for your Grandchildren

If your grandchildren frequently stay with you at your home, then designing a bedroom to meet their specific needs is a good choice. Your grandkids will be able to enjoy a home-from-home experience and a space that feels like it’s ‘theirs,’ and you’re provided with the perfect opportunity to indulge a love of interior design as you seek to create a wonderful space.

You will soon discover that designing a bedroom for your grandchildren is very different from creating a bedroom for your children. As a grandparent, you don’t need to worry too much about educational elements, or hunt down boring storage ottomans to hold their entire toy collection: you can create a room that is functional, yes, but also beautiful and fun. To aid you in this quest, below, I’ve gathered together a few ideas that you might want to try.

 

#1 – Go all-in on a theme

 

If a child is going to be sleeping in a room every night, themes can be rather limiting and can begin to get old relatively quickly. However, if your grandkids only stay over occasionally, themes retain their charm for far longer and can look absolutely spectacular for as long as they are in place.

If you’re going to go for a theme, commit to it wholeheartedly, and put it first and foremost when you consider anything about the room. This includes obvious elements such as artwork and decor, but also essential furniture options; you should be able to browse a kids wardrobe collection or find storage furniture options that perfectly align with your intended theme.

 

#2 – A DIY mural

 

Murals are a great choice for a child’s bedroom, but can be made all the more personal if you let your grandkids get involved in actually creating the finished art themselves. Sure, it might not have the most professional finish in the world, but that’s part of the charm.

In addition to the above, one of the great benefits of creating a DIY mural is that you can choose to do anything. This is particularly useful if you’re working to a theme, as you won’t be restricted by the choices available in store. There’s plenty of inspirational ideas available for DIY murals online, or you could take a more freestyle approach if you’re feeling adventurous.

 

#3 – Fun novelty lighting

 

The modern world is full of novelty lighting, so you should have no shortage of options to choose from. Lighting can bring a room to life, and can help to create a fun, relaxed atmosphere that your grandkids will love.

In terms of what novelty lighting you should choose, the only limit is your imagination. If you’d like to achieve an educational element, you could opt for lighting that produces a replica of the night sky. Alternatively, keep things light and go for the standard fairy lights – they’re a classic for a reason.

 

In conclusion

Designing a bedroom for your grandchildren is a great choice if you’re a fan of interior design, as it gives you the ability to indulge and put fun and style at the forefront of your thoughts.

HEALTH INSURANCE BUYING GUIDE

International medical insurance plans are growing in popularity, as more and more people are realising the benefits associated with these policies. Nonetheless, there are so many different options to choose from when it comes to buying the right health insurance policy for you. Keeping that in mind, read on to discover how to select the right plan…

 

 

Drawing of a family within a heart.

Protect Your Family.

The first thing you need to do is identify what you actually want from your health insurance plan. There are various questions you need to ask yourself in order to determine this, such as…

 

  • What are your plans for the future? What countries do you intend on visiting or moving to?
  • What policy features do you consider to be essentials?
  • Do you have any pre-existing conditions or is there a history of a certain illness in your family?
  • What is your budget?
  • How often do you think you will need treatment? Are you fit and healthy?
  • Do you have any other type of insurance policies?

 

By asking yourself these questions you will give yourself a good basis for determining what you actually need from your international health insurance policy.

 Once you have done this you then need to determine what level of cover you require. You will find that most insurance providers have several different levels for you to choose from. These range from basic coverage to comprehensive cover levels. The latter will cover everything from optical cover, to dental care, to maternity cover. Nonetheless, they will also be more expensive and so it is all about getting the balance right.

Aside from this, you may have access to extra modules and various different policy options. Perhaps you only want a standard level of cover yet you would like to tailor your plan slightly. In some instances, you may be able to do this. In addition to this, you will have to think about the network of hospitals the plan is going to give you access to, as well as how much deductible you want to pay. In terms of the network of hospitals and healthcare practices, you may already have certain places in mind. For example, let’s say you are a patient at Bhandal Dental Practice, why would you want to go anywhere else? Make sure your chosen places are included, and if not, ask if they can be added on.

Last but not least, the only thing left to do is find the right health global medical insurance plan for you. Take a look on the Internet and assess your options carefully. Compare quotes but never simply go for the cheapest. Make sure the insurance provider is reputable and has good feedback in the industry. They should also provide extensive information and communication should be easy and effective.

Hopefully, you now feel more prepared to find the perfect insurance plan for you. Follow the advice that has been provided above and you can’t go wrong!

 

 

NIFTY WAYS TO BE THRIFTY AND PROFITABLE AT SIXTY

I know that it’s hard to manage your money. Believe me. And it doesn’t necessarily get easier as the years go by. But you can ensure that you have a happier future if you do more to protect your finances in the present day.

Think about your retirement and even university tuition for your children. Both of those things cost money, unfortunately. But before you start living an excessively frugal life just to restrict your spending, you might want to think about ways in which you could make smarter financial decisions. These are some nifty ways to be thrifty and profitable at sixty.

a man buying books at a book stall

Finding ways to be thrifty – selling the books you’ve read.

 

 Sell some of your belongings.

The first way to improve your personal finances is to start selling things of value that you no longer want or need. Most people have valuable things sitting around in their home that have been long forgotten. I know mine does. Your house is probably no different. You should get involved with a local car boot sale or perhaps even put together your own.

Other people might see great value in things that you no longer need. You could make a lot of money from your old belongings, and you’ll be decluttering your house at the same time. It’s a win-win situation.

 

Learn how to invest your money.

Ever made any investments? Well, you should. I know it sounds like a risk on the surface, but it’s smarter to increase your wealth than to leave it sitting in your bank account. If you invest your money well then you could open up new streams of income on top of your existing monthly wage. For instance, buying and leasing properties is a good way to bring in a regular source of income. You might also want to consider learning about CFDs (a contract for difference) to make smarter trading decisions. With the right tools, you can keep track of price fluctuations in global markets. It’s important to do your research and use all the resources at your disposal if you want to make intelligent investment moves.

Wallet with money near a computer.

There are many to make extra money via your computer.

 

Tidy up your monthly expenditures.

One of the smartest ways to be thrifty is to simply tidy up your monthly expenditures. You might waste more money on basic expenses than you realise. Start off by making a budget. You should check this budget regularly to keep tracking of your income and outgoings. But the point is that you need to keep an eye on the amount of money you set aside for essentials. Take a look at possible areas of your life in which you could save money.

For instance, you might be able to save money on energy by getting thicker glazing for your windows or insulating the roof in your attic. If you can trap heat in your house then you won’t need to use so much energy to keep it warm. You could also save money on your phone bills or car insurance by looking for cheaper quotes on comparison websites. If you find a better deal with another provider then you’ve got an opportunity to haggle with your existing provider for an even cheaper price. Once you start cutting down your monthly expenditures, you’ll have more money to set aside for your savings.

 

EXPLORING THE WORLD OF WINE – GETTING MORE OUT OF EACH GLASS

You may enjoy a good glass of wine and find that it helps you to relax after a long day at work.  However, if you aren’t able to truly look into the wine you are drinking or pull out particular flavours  then there is high chance that you are not enjoying it as much as you could be. But there some easy ways to improve your wine drinking experience.

Let your Glass of Wine Sit

When you pour a glass of wine, don’t taste it right way. Instead, you need to let it sit for anywhere between 5 and 30 minutes. I like to do this because it really opens up the flavour and aroma, which both change over time.

I do this with nearly every wine that I can because it offers a completely different experience with every bottle opened. Try it, see if you agree.

 

Wine glass being filled with red wine.

Know your Wine

 

Use the correct Glass

I would never consider drinking Oddbins champagne out of anything other than a champagne flute. For that reason, I think that it is important to make sure that you drink your wine out of the correct glass.

This is because the shape of the glass changes how the wine smells and tastes. It is well worth investing in some quality wine glasses as it will completely change your tasting experience. Some flavours will jump out over others and it will also make you feel as though you are focusing on the specific wine you have.

 

Two wine glasses with white wine

Exploring the World of Wine

 

 Write Things Down

I have to admit that I had never really thought about doing this until I started to learn more about wine, but writing things down is crucial. If you have a nice bottle of wine then although you are sure you will recall the label and the name, there is a high chance that you will have forgotten it all the moment you try to buy it again.

This is completely normal, but if you write things down then you can avoid all of this. Jot down the price of the wine, the brand, the flavours and the shop where you purchased it.

Of course, it is important to know that sometimes you won’t be able to taste the same flavours because not every bottle of wine tastes the same however this is a great way for you to see how the flavours can change and even how your own palette changes as you drink the wine.

Of course, the above tips are super fun when you try wine with friends!

 

This is a collaborative post.

MY AUTUMN BUCKET LIST

I know I usually write about more controversial topics, so I thought for a change, I’d follow my friend Sue’s suggestion at https://suefoster.info/ and write something a bit more chilled out, such as my Autumn Bucket List.

Whilst I love the Mr Blue Sky days of summer, the sun on my back and the associated need for many refreshing ice cold Gin and Tonic’s, I really look forward to the Autumn, I think as a season it’s the best one of the year.

So what do I love about Autumn, in no particular order

PACK AWAY VEST TOPS AND CHUCK AWAY FLIP FLOPS

a blue flowery flip flop

Flip Flops are the work of the summer devil.

Every year I buy far too many strappy tops, in far too many colours, but being a creature of habit, I usually only wear the black and white ones. So it’s a relief as Autumn approaches to be able to pack away the rarely worn colourful tops to free up some drawer space. But not the black and white ones, because as every girl knows, under her cosy woolly jumper lies a well washed strappy top masquerading as a vest!

And don’t get me started on flip flops. How is it that some women can rock a flip flop like it’s a comfort shoe from Hotter, whilst even though the toe post didn’t hurt in the shop, and I stupidly think that this is THE pair that are going to be the exception to the excruciating toe post pain, they never, ever are. It’s a fact, I hate flip flops.

 

IT GETS DARKER EARLIER

Street lamps on at dusk in Autumn

Dark and Moody Autumn Dusk

Yes, it’s true, unlike most people, I love it when the clocks go back in October. The nights draw in and the sky gets moody and dark much earlier.  Once we are back indoors after our dog walk, around 4.00pm, I like the ‘that’s it’ moment when we don’t have to venture out again. We can just cosy up on the sofa, for some late afternoon TV, without feeling that we ‘should be’ cremating some chicken wings on the BBQ and sitting outside in the remains of the day. (And what a great film that was)

SOUP

A bowl of soup in Autumn

Autumn Comfort Food

Autumn means that we can kiss a fond farewell to the wilting bags of forgotten salad leaves that lurk in everyone’s fridge throughout the summer. Was there every a vegetable that had such a short shelf life as watercress. You buy it one day, all perky and fresh, 24 hours later, it’s turned into liquid green slime.  Soup is my much preferred ‘replacement meal’!

Warm, filling and comforting, is there anything better than a bowl of home made soup, and it’s so easy to make.  As luck would have it, I can make a not too shabby bowl of soup out of virtually anything lurking in my fridge, as long as it’s not watercress.

DOG WALKS: COLOURFUL TREES AND CRUNCHY LEAVES

Tree lined road in Autumn

Autumn means bare trees and crunchy leaves.

Dog walks are much more enjoyable in the Autumn.  No worries about the pavements being too hot for tender paws, and mad dogs and Englishmen being out in the mid day sun.  The countryside is a riot of colour as the leaves fall off the trees and dogs have a great time crunching and sniffing their way through them.

On a blowy day it’s amusing to see even the most macho of big dogs, being surprised by a very scary leaf suddenly falling from the sky.  Walks are brisk and invigorating, putting colour in your cheeks thus saving on the blusher.

There are far more things I don’t like about Winter,…  ( can I get away with wearing black leggings and Uggs AGAIN this year? ) Spring… ( Easter seems to come a few weeks after Boxing Day) and Summer…. (I love the heat, but as older people say ‘ it’s a different kind of heat’ in the UK) , but Autumn?  Autumn is different. What’s not to like!

For more A is for Autumn Bucket Listers head over to https://www.arosetintedworld.co.uk/autumn-bucket-list/

What is your favourite season of the year?

 

IS IT TIME TO STOP TAKING THE TABLETS

I’ll admit it, I’m lucky, I’m in my mid 60’s and I haven’t taken a single prescription tablet for the last 5 years, and I’ve done all I can to avoid the Doctor. If you are currently pill popping, is it time to stop taking the tablets?

Stethescope

Avoid the Doctor!

But is it really down to luck, or more about my refusal to go to the Doctors with some of the same symptoms that might make other people my age get their surgery on speed dial for an appointment as soon as possible.

I’m not saying for one minute that I’m never ill, but if I’m in pain or feeling uncomfortable,  I just take a pain killer and wait for it to go away, and clearly for the past 5 years at least, that’s exactly what ‘it’ has done!  (more…)

MATURE MEN SHOULD JUST STOP TALKING

Yesterday, I nearly went and got myself a date…….but whilst from the outside my would be new gentleman friend was quite acceptable, once he started on his epic story, he went on and on, and it quickly became a no likey from me. That’s why mature men should just stop talking.

Stick men showing one of them talking

Mature men should just stop talking

There I was stood on a chilly September morning, flogging my crap again at the local weekly car boot sale when a mature gentleman kindly pointed out to me that one of my items was displayed the wrong way round.

He seemed a nice genuine man, silver hair, with an impressive logo on his body warmer, and if I’m not mistaken a splash of Dior Eau de Savage wafted my way. We chatted about the pro’s and con’s of bifocal’s, and how popular Onyx had been in the 70’s. Not exactly mind blowing conversation, but don’t say I didn’t try.

I’m quite a regular there as I’m trying my best to declutter my life because as lifestyle ‘gurus’ say,  minimalistic is the new way to be cosy and less stressed.  I’m not convinced.  (more…)