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On a recent trip to San Diego I stayed at The Westin Hotel.
The hotel is a 26-story building and it has an unusual shape making the hotel look different and modern.
I stayed in the cheapest room as I was only there a few nights. My room was located on the 10th floor and I was impressed.
Due to the fact the hotel is an odd shape this also makes the room a little odd too. As I opened the door I entered a narrow like hall way and straight away I thought 'ooh this is small.' But, as I walked into the main part of the room my opinion changed on the room.
Yes, it's small but the hotel have made a good choice with how they've furnished it.
In my room I had two double beds with a long bed side shelf which had a few draws in, a slim-line desk, draws and a built in wardrobe.
The furniture was very modern and nice and with a big window the length of one wall that helped make the room feel bigger.
The bed was so comfortable! I had 4 big pillows and a decoration pillow and then a light weight duvet and sheet.
I think I had one of the best night's sleep in this bed.
Even though the weather was still very much in the 20's (C) when I was there at night it does get a little colder so the thin duvet was needed.
The one thing that really impressed me about the room was the fact there was a Starbuck's coffee machine on the desk! It came with milk, 2 tea bags, 3 big bags of coffee and two medium sized Starbuck's take away cups.
There were instructions on how to use it and I did have a go. However it took a while to fill the Starbuck's cup and it probably would have been quicker to go the coffee shop in the Lobby and grab a coffee!
But it was still very cool to have one in the room! I believe this service is free to use, I used it once and when I checked out I didn't have to pay but, in one of the guides in the room it says surcharge. I would assume it's free as the milk and tea bag I used got replaced so it was noted I had used the machine.
Next to the coffee machine on the other unit was a Flat Screen HD TV. I barely used it, I turned it on one night to see what was on and it had a good range of channels but one channel I watch when in America wasn't on there which is FOX.
The bathroom was very nice and modern. It wasn't huge but it was still a good size.
It had a bath/shower, toilet and basin. The shower had a double head which looked good but, it wasn't powerful definitely no power shower. It was decent though and easy to work.
The toilet has the quietest flush, you can barely hear it flush even when your stood next to it!
There were plenty of towels! Under the sink was a low bench with many towels on which was handy.
Also in the bathroom was a large mirror with two lights either side of it and power sockets. I like the fact there were power sockets in the bathroom as it meant I could plug my hair straighteners in and use the big mirror.
The Westin also provide a few toiletries such as soap, shampoo, conditioner and body lotion.
The other things in the room where: Hair Dryer, Air Conditioning, bathrobes, iron, ironing board, clock radio, fridge, safe, full length mirror, wifi (surcharge) and phone.
You either get a city view or water view from the window and mine was a bit of both. I could just about see the bay in the distance.
The one thing that disappointed me (this isn't really to do with the hotel though) was one night all I could hear was a really loud 'honk' noise which lasted about 5 or so minutes. I first heard it at about 10.30pm and it was generally the first bit of noise I had heard other than a fire truck going by and then again at 2 or 3am that same noise woke me up again. I still have no idea what it was but it was really loud!
The following night I didn't hear this 'honk' and in fact I didn't hear anything except the odd siren.
Overall the room was fantastic and I would have liked to have stayed longer. The room service was great, one day when I returned to the room my things in the bathroom were laid out beautifully and the room was spotless.
Now onto the rest of the hotel.
The Lobby is very big, it has a large reception desk and seating area next to each other with lovely decorations hanging from the ceiling. Then there is a coffee shop which I didn't use and a small restaurant. I used the restaurant only for breakfast.
Breakfast was a buffet with a choice of food. A choice of cereals, cooked food such a bacon, egg, sausages etc, fresh fruit, yoghurt and more. I had fresh fruit and cereal as I'm not huge on big breakfasts but it all looked delicious.
I was impressed with the fruit as they had blueberries which are my favourite and I haven't had blueberries in an American hotel before.
There was also a choice of drinks- many different kinds of tea, coffee, fresh orange juice and bottled tropicana drinks. If your English you won't be able to find a decent tea bag for 'English Tea' the closest you will get is black tea which the hotel have.
The staff in the restaurant were brilliant all of them were kind and helpful. From people watching they also seemed to go out of their way to please their guests.
The hotel also has a 24 hour fitness room, outdoor swimming pool with views of the city, Spa treatment rooms, gift shop, valet parking and jacuzzi.
Unfortunately I didn't have time to check out the fitness room or swimming pool. I could see the pool from my window and it looked good, it never seemed busy but there was always someone either in the pool or in the jacuzzi.
The hotel is located in a great spot about a 10 minute walk to Horton Plaza which is a great shopping mall, 10 minute walk to the bay and 5 blocks away from San Diego's historic gaslamp quarter.
San Diego Zoo and Blaboa park are about a 20 minute car journey away.
There are many little shops to pick up some food or water close by that are open until late at night.
Overall I loved this hotel and I would definitely stay here again!
I can't remember how much I paid to stay here but I had breakfast included in my price. I've seen The Westin on Expedia and a few other websites so it will pay to look around! But for a 4 star hotel I think what I paid was reasonable. I'm not into paying lots of money for hotels especially when I'm only there a little while so this one clearly wasn't expensive.
5 DooYoo Stars
Earlier this year I was introduced to Krispy Kreme doughnuts while on a shopping trip. Ever since my first bite I have been addicted to these delicious round things!
Krispy Kreme is a doughnut company founded by Vernon Rudolph. He started making the yeast-raised doughnuts in 1933 and they soon became quite popular. In 1950 expansion occurred and by the 1960's Krispy Kreme was a well known brand throughout the southeastern states of America.
In 2001 Krispy Kreme opened their first store outside of the USA in Canada and now, 10 years on you will see this logo around the world.
In the UK you will find Krispy Kreme stores located in many large shopping centres and places like Oxford Street, however they are becoming much more popular over here and stores are popping up everywhere!
Tesco also have mini Krispy Kreme fridges with a range of doughnuts! Most Tesco Extra stores have them and it seems like the smaller stores are also stocking them now!
The stores tend to be fairly busy but, it doesn't take long to get a doughnut! As you walk in there is a large counter with many different types of doughnut on display. If you have never had a Krispy Kreme before it can be a little daunting being in a busy place with so many doughnuts to choose from! But, you can take a step back or to the side to browse the counter and decided which one you want.
Once you know join the queue and someone will take your order, you then walk to the till and pay and your doughnut will be waiting for you.
Not only can you purchase a doughnut in the stores but you can also get yourself a hot or cold drink and a few other goodies.
Once you have your order you can sit down in-store and enjoy or in many stores they have a small outside area where you can sit and eat.
I have only been to a Krispy Kreme store twice as I don't have a store close to home. Once was a take out order and the other eat in. Both times I got served extremely quickly even though it was busy and the store was very clean.
There were plenty of staff behind the counter and I'd always see another staff member cleaning tables and sweeping.
Now onto the doughnut itself!
There are many types of doughnut ranging from an Original Glazed to a Lemon Meringue Pie. My favourite is a Chocolate Dreamcake or Chocolate Sprinkles.
All the doughnuts are average doughnut sized they aren't small at all but, at the same time they aren't huge I'd say they are the perfect size. There is enough to fill you up but not enough to make you feel sick.
When I first bit into the soft, smooth chocolate topped doughnut I had never tasted anything so good! My taste bud's must have gone crazy because I couldn't wait to eat more. On the next bite I got into the chocolate centre, the chocolate was smooth and creamy and just tasted so good!
When I had finished the doughnut I was actually sad it was all gone. So sad I licked the chocolate left in the paper bag it came in. (I may add I'm not the only person that does this :D )
Ever since my first Krispy Kreme my mouth waters whenever I talk or walk past them! Since this day I have tried many a Krispy Kreme doughnut- Raspberry Glazed, Strawberries and Kreme, Cookies and Kreme, Butterscotch Fudge and a few more, and I am yet to come across one I don't like!
They are all just so delicious.
A basic Glazed doughnut will set you back around £1.30 which is very expensive but worth it! The filled doughnuts are approx £1.45ish.
You can also make up your own box or buy a box of 12 assorted doughnuts for around £9. Or you can get a box of 12 Original Glazed for about £7.
The appearance and taste of Krispy Kreme's are amazing but, to many doughnuts aren't so good for the body.
A 52g Original Glazed will add on 217 calories and a 90g Stawberries and Kreme will add on 323.
On the plus side the doughnuts are suitable for vegetarians and for people who follow the Halal diet.
Allergen information: Contains wheat, egg, milk, soya.
May contain nuts and sulphites. Also contain: colours, antioxidants, flavourings and preservatives.
Overall these are the best doughnuts I have ever had and whenever I go into Tesco I end up purchasing one.
They are expensive but, for a treat every now and then I think it's ok. I used to buy a pack of 4 Tesco Doughnuts for £1.10 but, since Krispy Kreme no other doughnut compares.
-5 DooYoo Stars Highly Recommended.
I've never written a music review so it may not be so good!
A few months ago I went to the Glee Live concert and I enjoyed it so much I decided to purchase the soundtrack which came out a few weeks ago.
The CD contains 23 live songs and has a total length of 1 hour, 6 minutes and 14 seconds.
The case is your average album case with Glee 3D boldly written as you can see in the picture above. There are small pictures of the cast dotted around the writing. While most of the cast have their picture on the cover, a few cast members who are main characters don't. I don't know why and I feel it's a shame they aren't included as some less main characters are on there still. But never mind.
Inside the case is the CD and, you can pull the front cover out and it has pictures from the Glee Live concert and information about each song.
1.) Don't Stop Believing: (Journey Cover)
This song is Glee's anthem pretty much so, naturally this was their first song at the concert.
The song starts with light fan screaming (they have edited the screaming out alot) and then Mr Schue begins to talk and he introduces the song.
Lea Michele (Rachel) and Cory Monteith (Finn) take a lead role in singing this song and I feel they do a great job. The rest of the cast sing the backing and do the "baada, baada" bit which I really like.
Overall the song has alot of energy and the vocals are very good!
Total length is: 4:01
2.) Dog Days: (Florence + the machine cover)
This song comes straight on after Don't Stop with no gaps. Amber Riley (Mercedes) and Jenna Ushkowitz (Tina) take the lead vocals in this song and they do a fantastic job. Again, the rest of the cast sing backup.
Total length is: 2:59
3.) Sing: (My Chemical Romance cover)
This song comes on straight away after Dog Days with no gaps. Lea Michele & Cory Monteith take the lead singing role in this song again. Lea has a very powerful voice and she does a brilliant job. Cory has less power but, he still does a great job.
Total length is: 2:41
4.) I'm A Slave 4 U (Britney Spears cover)
Heather Morris (Brittany) leads this song solo. This song has a big dance routine that goes with it and so I always thought Heather would mime during the tour. But on the album you can tell it's live. It has the least amount of singing in as I feel the dancing is more concentrated on however, Heather does a good job and considering the amount of dancing around she does she manages to pull each note off pretty much perfectly.
Total length is: 3:24
5.) Fat Bottomed Girls (Queen cover):
Mark Salling (Puck) sings this song and also plays the guitar to this. There is alot of screaming at the beginning but, it soon dies down. I love this song and Mark has the right voice to sing this type of song. I also like it because the cast are playing the instruments. Mark (Puck) & Chord (Sam) play the guitar and Cory (Finn) plays the drums.
Total length is: 2:21
6.) I Want To Hold Your Hand (The Beatles cover):
Chris Colfer (Kurt) sings this song solo. This is a slowed down version compared to The Beatles. Chris has quite a high voice for a man and he sings this song beautifully! You know 100% he sings live as he talks to the fans saying 'Hi' and he even begins to giggle a little bit which is quite funny.
I liked the song when he preformed it on the show but, I love it when Chris sings it live!
Total length is: 3:08
7.) Ain't No Way (Aretha Franklin cover):
Amber Riley (Mercedes) sings solo. Amber has a belter of a voice and she can really sing. I don't really know what to say about this song, as Amber blew me away when she sang it. I think that's all that needs to be said!
Total length is: 3:09
8.) P.Y.T (Michael Jackson cover):
Kevin McHale (Arite) sings solo. Kevin has the perfect voice for a Michael Jackson song! You can tell he puts alot of effort into singing this song and it pays off, he does a fantastic job, even hitting the high notes!
Total length is: 2:42
9.) Born This Way (Lady Gaga cover):
Amber Riley (Mercedes), Jenna Ushkowitz (Tina) and Chris Colfer (Kurt) sing the lead with the rest of the cast minus Lea Michele singing backup.
It took me a while to like the Glee version of Born This Way but I love it now. The song has a long introduction as at the concert each cast member came on stage to show off their 'Born This Way' T-Shirt... You kind of need to watch the TV show to understand this. But that's why there is such a long introduction.
Amber, Jenna & Chris again do a great job singing the lead. As this song has a big dance routine to it aswell, I feel the whole cast do a great job singing and dancing at the same time! This is one of my favourite songs they sang live.
Total length is: 3:59
10.) Firework (Katy Perry cover):
Lea Michele (Rachel) sings solo. Firework begins straight after BTW finishes. Lea as always does a brilliant job, she belts out those long notes flawlessly. During the song you hear bangs this is because there are real fireworks going off. This doesn't affect anything and Lea's voice stays perfect even though there are fireworks going off around her!
Total length is: 2:46
11.) Teenage Dream (Katy Perry cover):
Darren Criss (Blaine) and The Warblers sing this song. If you watch the TV show you will know how The Warblers sound. They still do a cappella at the concert with Darren taking the lead singing role and the rest of the guys singing background vocals and arrangements.
I love this version and they all do a fantastic job!! Darren's voice is amazing, I wouldn't say he has the strongest voice ever but, he definitely has the strongest male voice in Glee.
Total length is: 2:31
12.) Silly Love Songs (Paul McCartney cover):
Darren Criss (Blaine) and The Warblers. Again Darren takes the lead and the rest of The Warblers sing a cappella and they do the backing vocals and arrangements. They do great with this song and even get the fans involved. There is a bit of fan singing but the fans are singing backup and Darren sings the main vocals so it fits in well and it only lasts a little while.
Total length is: 2:33
13.) Raise Your Glass (Pink cover):
Darren Criss & The Warblers. This is another favourite song of mine from the concert. Darren sings lead and The Warblers do their usual. Darren puts so much energy into singing this and he does brilliant! When he says "My glass is empty, that sucks." He sounds out of breath but, it doesn't really affect his vocals while singing. I could seriously listen to him sing this all day I love his voice!
Total length is: 2:26
14.) Happy Days Are Here Again/ Get Happy (Judy Garland and Barbra Streisand covers):
Lea Michele (Rachel) and Chris Colfer (Kurt) sing this as a duet. Both of them do so well singing this and they do it wonderfully. Their voices go together and they sound great but, for me I just don't really like this song. Nothing to do with Lea or Chris it's just not my cup of tea. Overall they do great singing it.
Total length is: 2:52
15.) Lucky (Jason Mraz and Colbie Caillat cover):
Dianna Agron (Quinn) and Chord Overstreet (Sam) sing a duet. This is my favourite song.
Neither of them have the strongest voice but, both have great voices and their voices go together so well. Dianna has a sort of nasally voice, it's not overpowering by any means but you can tell it's there. I love her voice and I wish she got to sing more during the concert, I'm just glad she got to sing this song with Chord as their voices are so good together.
Total length is: 2:10
16.) River Deep Mountain High (Ike & Tina Turner cover):
Amber Riley (Mercedes) and Naya Rivera (Santana) sing a duet. This is an upbeat get your groove on song. As always Amber sings brilliantly as does Naya. They both have strong voices which go together well. You can tell they put alot of energy into their singing and they do well. It's a very enjoyable song!
Total length is: 2:52
17.) Forget You (Cee Lo Green cover):
Gwyneth Paltrow (Holly) takes the lead vocals in this and the rest of the cast minus Lea Michele sing backup. I didn't know Gwyneth could sing until her appearance on Glee. She's actually a very good singer and she does a good cover of this song. Again like all the songs you can tell she is singing live and I enjoy her version of Forget You.
Total length is: 2:42
18.) Don't Rain On My Parade (Barbra Streisand cover):
Lea Michele (Rachel) sings this solo. This song definitely shows how good of a singer Lea is, very much a broadway voice! She belts those notes out flawlessly and puts so much effort into her singing.
Total length is: 2:43
19.) Jessie's Girl (Rick Springfield cover)
Cory Monteith (Finn) sings solo. This is quite a short song but very enjoyable. Cory hasn't got the strongest voice ever but, he still does a fab job and this is another favourite of mine. He lowers his voice at the beginning so his voice suits the song I suppose and it sounds good.
I think if he had sang this live last year it wouldn't have been so good but, Cory's voice has improved so much and he sounds great in this song.
Total length is: 2:00
20.) Valerie (The Zutons/ Amy Winehouse cover)
Naya Rivera (Santana) sings solo. Naya has a strong, raspy voice and her voice suits this song brilliantly. She puts alot of effort into her singing and she does a great cover!
Total length is: 2:06
21.) Loser Like Me.
This is Glee's Original Song and if you haven't heard it before it can take a while to like it but, it's really good and not that cheesy. Lea Michele and Cory Monteith take the lead with the rest of the cast singing backup. It's a catchy song with a good beat your able to dance around to!
Near the end of the song the cast sing without any backing music and as this is the live version they say something along the lines of 'are you ready.. 1,2,3 go.' This is because they throw fake slushy's out to the crowd. Overall all the cast do a good job vocally and it's very enjoyable!
Total length is: 3:46
22.) Safety Dance (Men Without Hats cover)
Kevin McHale (Artie) sings solo. Kevin does such a good cover of this song! I actually prefer it when he sings it compared to the original version. He has a great voice and considering he does alot of dancing his voice stays pretty good throughout.
Total length is: 2:35
23.) Somebody To Love (Queen cover)
This is the last song on the album and the whole cast sing with Lea Michele and Cory Monteith taking lead vocals. Lea does a brilliant job singing and so does Cory.
The song is so long because it carries on until the very end of the concert so you hear the cast saying Thank You etc. It's not all singing but, the majority is. It's very enjoyable and I always find myself swaying along when I hear it.
Total length is: 4:15
Overall this is a great memory from the concert and I'm glad I brought it!
All of the songs aren't full length which is what I expected as on the TV show they don't ever sing full length covers. Even though the songs are halved they still sound great and you don't really notice parts have been missed out.
What I don't understand is why 'Don't Rain On My Parade' and 'Forget You' are on the album as they only sang DROMP at a couple of the first concerts and then stopped it. And Forget you was only done twice through out the 42 concerts.
I guess it's because this is the Movie Soundtrack and they did both of those songs at the movie recording.
Also, I don't understand why they haven't added 'Empire State Of Mind' (Jay Z version) as they sang this at every concert and the cast did a good version of this song! It's a shame it's not on there but, that's probably the only disadvantage for me.
Otherwise it's a great live album and it shows the whole cast's talents vocally!
You can buy the album from HMV, Amazon, Play.com etc for about £8.99 or you can download it from iTunes for £7.99.
Personally I would only buy the album if I went to the concert or if I just really loved Glee.
If I had never heard of Glee before and wanted to listen to their music I would buy their main albums like- Glee The Music Volume 1 etc which have the full length songs and no fan screaming.
But, for Gleeks this is a great, fun live album!
When it comes to online shopping for things like CDs, DVDs etc I tend to use Amazon or Play.com but, over the past few months HMV.co.uk have really upped their game.
I rarely looked on HMV.co.uk but when I was looking for a DVD one day I decided to have a look on the website and check out their prices. To my surprise HMV had the same prices as Amazon and Play.com with free delivery aswell and since I've used the website alot.
As you go onto HMV.co.uk you are greeted with a bright, bold homepage with many good deals clearly advertised. At the top of the homepage is a big search bar so if you know what you are looking for you can quickly type the name and it will come up with a result within seconds.
Or just under this are the links to the DVD, Blu-Ray, Games, Music, Downloads, Tech, Cool Stuff, Tickets, PureHMV and Offers sections.
Downloads is a place were you can download music tracks and audiobooks. It works pretty much the same as iTunes and all of their tracks are compatible with iTunes or Windows Media Player. I haven't used this before as I stick with Amazon for downloading music or iTunes.
HMV's prices are about 0.99p per track so the same as iTunes and their albums are the same price too at about £7.99 an album depending on what the album is.
They have all the top chart singles and albums along with older music. You can also Pre-Order things.
Overall I can't comment on how good it is as having the same prices as iTunes I find it's easier to just use iTunes!
Tech is a place where you can buy gifts and gadgets, speakers, headphones, consoles, iPods etc. I've purchased a games console from HMV before as they often have many good deals and bundles on offer so I always find it's a good place to check out.
Cool Stuff, you can get books, clothing, posters, mugs and things here. The range of books is ok, they have a few fiction books but their main books are music. If you know a Justin Bieber fan then HMV have many books about Bieber.
Their clothing are generally music related. Rihanna, The Wanted, Justin Bieber T-Shirts etc but, they also have Twilight Saga clothing and a few other non-music related. None of those T-Shirts are really my taste so I can't comment on the quality of them.
I'd say the prices of the T-Shirt's are decent at around the £11.99 mark. If you go to a concert you'd pay £20+ for one however, I guess these aren't so much tour merchandise but if you don't want to fork out for a tour T-Shirt HMV have a good cheaper alternative.
HMV Tickets- You can buy tickets for concerts, festivals, comedy and the theatre. I didn't know HMV did this until recently so I haven't used this service. I've had a browse and they have tickets for many good artists and theatre shows.
And then the main factor about this website for me is the DVD section. They have a huge range of DVDs from new to old. Along with chart DVDs they have boxsets and they very often have offers on with their boxsets.
HMV also have sales on with older DVDs going for prices of £2.99.
I find the DVDs are good value for money as they are the same price as Play.Com and only about a penny more expensive than Amazon!
The reason I've switched to using HMV more is because when I Pre-Order from the other sites the item I have Pre-Ordered tend to arrive the day after their release date but, with HMV my Pre-Odereded goods arrive 2 days before the release date! I also find their shipping a little quicker than other places.
Not only do I get my Pre-Ordered goods faster but, HMV have partnered up with Boots Treat Street which means when you shop online at HMV you can get Boots Advantage Card points.
You have to sign up to this at Boots Treat Street and follow their steps but it's very easy and it means you get extra points to spend in Boots stores!
HMV also have their own points reward scheme but, you have to pay a one off payment of £3 for this which means when you shop online or in-store you get points and you can spend them on Film Premieres, Gig Tickets etc. I haven't bothered with this as it would take me a long time to get a decent amount of points to redeem them! But I guess if you shop alot in HMV it might be worth a look into.
Overall HMV is a great place to do online shopping. I'd rather shop online than in-store as their in-store prices tend to be more than online.
The fast, free shipping is great and products turn up (based on DVD's and CDs) in a cardboard box which can be recycled!
Not only do they sell DVD's and CD's but, they have a large range of other products already mentioned!
The only disadvantage would be the return policy. You can't return it via one of their high street stores you have to post it back. I've never had to send anything back before but, reading what is on their website about returns I assume you can't take it back into a store it just tells you to post it.
Otherwise it's a great online shop!
4 Stars- Recommended.
My review is about the O2 as it is now and not the Millennium Dome.
I've been to the O2 twice now both for concerts, I never visited it when it was known as the the Millennium Dome and so I can't compare how it used to be to how it is now.
The first time I went to the O2 it was the first time I've ever travelled to and around London without anyone who knows the city like the back of their hand. Thankfully I took to the tube very well and getting to the O2 was well signed on the tube map. I didn't realise that North Greenwich tube station was located slap bang next to the O2 so it was a relief when I got out of the station and saw this big white dome shining in the sunshine!
The dome looked fantastic and pretty big from where I was standing, I was a little nervous I wouldn't be able to find my way around it.
My friend and I walked up the the O2 and outside where a few restaurants and then closer to the dome was a merchandise stand for the concert we were seeing.
To the left of the main entrance doors were the Pre-Booked ticket window where you collect your tickets if you've pre-booked a different way. The first time I went to the O2 I didn't use this as I got tickets from Ticketmaster and so they get sent to you.
We walked into the O2 and there were some security gates and a few security men, we asked if they wanted us to walk through them and they said no, so we carried on walking. They seemed to select people at random.
Inside the O2 are a few shops and many restaurants! The first shop we saw was the O2 shop (mobiles) and the Sky TV place. Straight in front of us were the doors to the O2 Arena. As we were going to be sat up on level 4 we looked up and it didn't seem that high (thank goodness.)
To the left of the Arena doors was another bigger merchandise counter and to the right was a walk way taking you to the many restaurants and to the Cinema.
A few of the restaurants are: Nandos, TGI Friday's, Zizzi, GBK, Pizza Express and many more.. so a restaurant to suit anyone and they are all located in Entertainment Avenue.
I didn't eat in any of these restaurants we just brought some snacks from one of the little food shops. This food shop was located opposite the restaurants also in Entertainment Avenue and it had a good range of sandwiches, drinks, crisps, chocolate etc but it was very expensive! I brought a bottle of Orange Juice and a Tuna sandwich and I didn't have much change out of a £5!
Inside the O2 is also a Cineword's multiplex cinema with 11 screens. The main auditorium sits 770 people and has the biggest screen in London. I didn't go the cinema while I was there but it sounds impressive.
Next to the big Arena is the Indigo O2 which is a smaller venue which holds 2,400 people and they have live music, comedy, a night club here. The X-Factor have filmed boot-camp in the Indigo.
Now onto the O2 Arena which holds up to 20,000 people!
There are a couple of different entrances into the Arena and ours was the entrance located straight in front of you when you walk into the actual dome.
Before you go into the arena you have to have your bag searched and your not allowed to take drinks with a lid on. It looks pretty daunting when you walk in and there are all these security people but, they are actually very nice. The arena has a few levels- Floor, Level 1, Private Boxes and level 4. These are all sign posted (except floor, for floor you follow level 1) and there are a few security people to help you find your way.
Getting up to Level 4 is quite a ride on the escalator, it's a long way up! As you get to level 4 there are places to buy more food and drink to take into the concert and the odd person with merchandise will walk around, again the prices are expensive!
Before you can go into the arena you have to go to the right gate, so if your sat in block 401 you will go to gate 401 and so on. My gate was 409 and it was easy to find.
Before I went to the O2 I was told level 4 were the worst seats and I wouldn't be able to see anything so I was worried. Looking up from the floor didn't seem high but looking down over the O2 from level 4 seemed high!!
We walked in and straight away we saw the stage. We had to walk down steps to get to our seats as we were Row A, I'm glad we had to walk down steps and not up! (If you were Row C or above you walked up the steps.) When we sat ourselves down we turned around and looked at everyone behind us... Any row after about D or E looked scary!
Level 4 is extremely steep and high!
From our seats we could see better than we thought we would be able too, yes anyone on the stage looked small and it was hard to see their face clearly but, we could see and we had a great time! I'd definitely sit Level 4 again but, I would only sit in Rows A,B or C. No higher than that or the view really would be rubbish and just the general steepness would scare me silly.
The seats were very comfortable and they had a place to hold your drinks. Being on level 4 means your not going to stand up and dance because otherwise there is a high chance you will fall and probably injure yourself badly. So it's a good job the seats were comfy and roomy. Leg space was decent, I have no reason to complain about leg room I was able to place my handbag and my shopping bag down with space for my feet to dance away.
To give some idea of how steep it is the people behind us in Row B, just above their ankles was where my head was. Imagine that steepness all the way up to Row Z!
The sound system was also good. The speakers were up around the roof of the arena and so we were close to them and everything sounded clear. There wasn't to much 'boom boom boom' only what you'd expect. I'd previously been told sitting on level 4 means the sound is horrible. This isn't true... Yes it's loud but it's clear and I could hear everything perfectly.
Overall my first experience of the O2 had been good. The only exception being toilets. We searched for quite a while to find a toilet when we were outside the arena and just in the dome part, when we found one located near to the cinema it was tiny! It had about 5 toilets in so after a big event which was sold out the queue is huge!
I assume they only had this toilet because all of the restaurants have their own toilets and there are toilets inside the arena.
The second time I went to the O2 was just as good. Again this was for a concert but this time I had to use the Ticket Window for Pre-Booked tickets I didn't have to queue and I just walked straight up and got my tickets from the man.
The only difference this time was at the arena I was sat on the Floor (it was a seated concert) and our entrance gate was the other side of the O2!! I think our entrance gate was H and it look a good 10-15 minute walk to get there... This is when I realised how big the O2 was.
Walking to Gate H we walked through the whole of Entertainment Avenue and by the O2 Bubble where they hold exhibitions.
Again getting into the arena you have the whole security process. Once we got in we followed the signs for Level 1 even though we were sat in the floor.
You walk into a large room selling food, drinks etc just like level 4 but it seemed bigger.
If your sat on level 1 then you have to find your gate e.g if your sat in Block 111 you go to gate 111, for people sat on the floor section you go to any gate that says entrance to floor seating so you can choose which gate you go into.
You walk down the steps of Level 1 until you reach the floor and then floor seats are in sections. Bock A1, A2, A3, B1, B2, B3 and C1 and C3 when I went (this changes depending on the event.)
I was sat in Block A2 a few rows from the front this time and it was a huge difference to being sat up on level 4!
The seats are just temporary seats and I think they were basic plastic chairs so they aren't that comfy. But fine for sitting on them for about an hour before the concert starts and then your stood up, well 95% of people stand up.
The leg room was okay, I had just my bag on the floor and for anyone walking past I'd have to completely stand up or move out the way completely. It was fine for me but anyone really tall would find it cramped.
The view this time was incredible I could see everything! But there are alot of security on the floor so no standing on chairs! And be careful if you have a camera they can be strict, especially if you video!
Toilets this time were better on the floor, they were located at the back of the floor to the left and they were massive. I used them straight after the concert finished and didn't have to queue which makes a first!
That's pretty much my experience of the O2 the main thing is the arena.
The O2 isn't a place I'd go out my way of to visit. If I was in London for the day I wouldn't go to the O2, I'd only go there for a concert or if there was an event I wanted to go to on otherwise I don't think it's worth a general look around visit.
If I lived close by I'd use the cinema but it would have to be my closest cinema for me to go there. I just think it's pointless to go to unless your going for a certain event.
But it's a great place to hold concerts as the transport link is fantastic! North Greenwich Tube Station is next to it, they have a taxi rank, Themes Clippers and you can drive. Parking is available with Pay as you arrive or you can Pre-Book. If your going to a big event it's recommended you pre-book, this is about £17.50 plus a £2.50 booking fee.
-A few tips would be to take your own food. The second time I went I popped into a Sainsburys and grabbed some food before I got on the Tube, I ate it before I went into the arena. Outside the O2 are a few places to sit or inside many people will sit down on the floor near the Arena entrance, so you don't look odd if you sit down and eat. Nobody looked at me anyway.
-If you need the loo try and hold it in and go when you get into the arena. Unless eating in a restaurant.
-Different outlets open and close at different times.
Overall a great place and the atmosphere is quite excitable if your going to a concert. Huge range of restaurants to choose from and when you walk through the row of restaurants it feels like your walking down a street, the only difference is there is a roof over your head!
I will continue going back for concerts. The only thing I would say would make it better would be more toilets in the dome part!!
I brought this mascara a few months ago now and I've used it almost everyday.
The mascara comes in a lovely looking tube, it's a shimmery light purple colour with gold writing. It's your average length tube but, I'd say it's a 'slim' tube there seem to be alot of chunky mascara's about but this tube is not at all chunky. It has it's curve in the middle but it's a perfect size to fit into a make up bag without taking up to much room.
I wouldn't say the tube stands out in a crowd of mascaras as it's quite plain but, it's a very nice looking tube.
The mascara says it 'coaxes your lashes to a more beautifully curved and volumed look, with long lasting curl.'
When I brought the No7 Exquisite Curl mascara I expected it to give my lashes a good curl more than anything. My lashes are most definitely not curly and I find it hard to get them to have a curl so that's reason I purchased this, and because I had a £5 off voucher!
I've read a few reviews saying you don't need to curl your lashes when using this product but for me I still have to use eyelash curlers. If you have naturally curly lashes or lashes that curl with ease then I probably wouldn't use curlers.
On first use (after curling my lashes) I applied a coat of mascara. The wand is a nice size, it's not too big or small and it has a spoon effect to it. The mascara went on really well without any clumps and after one coat my lashes had lengthened very well and a slight curl was appearing, after a second coat my lashes looked lovely and long with a bit of volume and curl.
I was a little disappointed about the curl- I had expected more. But two coats gave my lashes a great day time look which was perfect for work.
I've since experimented a bit more with the mascara and I've put on a few more coats. Three coats of mascara gave a better curl but anything after that didn't make a difference to my lashes and they began to look a bit silly.
I find this mascara gives great length to my lashes and probably the best I've used so far to do that. The volume it gives is slightly above average but, if you want a 'going out look' I applied this mascara and then put another volumizing mascara over the top to give a bolder look.
As this is a No7 product you can only purchase it in Boots stores. It currently costs £13.00 but, Boots often have £5 off vouchers for No7 and 3 for 2 so it can be brought as part of a deal.
Overall I love this mascara and I will be purchasing the 7ml tube again when I run out. It fits easily into a make up bag without taking up alot of room and it gives a really good effect.
I've used many mascaras and so far this is the only one that hasn't clumped after many uses and however many coats I put on.
The wand is soft and gentle on my lashes which is good considering my last Boots mascara felt like a wired brush!
I like the fact you can get a day time look and then just add a basic cheap mascara to get a going out look.
The only slight disappointment to me is that it doesn't curl my lashes as much as I hoped it would but, it still gives a curl though and the length it gives my lashes is brilliant. So overall I recommend this mascara!
4 Stars- Recommended.
(Hypoallergenic. Lasts 6 months after opening. The colour I use is 01 Black, it can also be purchased in Brown.)
Months ago I picked up a can of Batiste dry shampoo as my hair was occasionally getting greasy between washes. I picked up the aerosol like can in my local Boots for around the £2 mark although prices do vary alot.
There are a few different types of Batiste shampoo the one I am reviewing is the Original. The Original comes in a light green can and is about 30cms tall I don't think the can is that appealing and the only reason I spotted it is because I had looked at dry shampoo's online first.
The front of the can says the name of the product and 'refreshes hair between washes' and the back gives directions on use, a caution notice and it says a bit more about what the dry shampoo does.
The description on the back says 'with a refreshing fragrance, revitalises greasy, dull and lifeless hair between washes. Instantly leaves your hair feeling clean, full of body and smelling beautiful.'
- My Opinion -
The only time I find my hair gets greasy in-between washes is when I have been using the same shampoo / conditioner for a long time or if I have used heat defence spray alot.
A friend gave me a tip about using baby powder, I used to apply a small amount of powder on my hair and rub it in, I found this worked although with dark hair I'd get marks in my hair! Although this was a much cheaper way of keeping my hair looking nice between washes it wasn't very practical so I grabbed a can of dry shampoo.
Before use you have to shake the can vigorously I tend to shake it for about 10 or more seconds quite fast, I'm not sure why you have to do this I guess it makes the product work but on the plus side I find shaking the can vigorously helps wake me up in the morning!
It says to hold the can approximately 30cms away from your hair and spray lightly. I'm not sure what it means by spray lightly as I think the spray comes out thick and fast! So you have to move the can around your hair quite quickly to prevent alot of spray falling on just one part of your hair. If you stop spraying your meant to reshake the can if you wish to spray again.
The first thing I notice about the shampoo is the smell, it has a strong scent which is slightly perfume like mixed with a chemical smell. It is pretty overpowering at first but within seconds the scent disappears alot and leaves a decent fragrance on my hair a sort of light floral/ talcum powder smell.
Once hair is evenly sprayed you have to massage it in, this doesn't take to long and as soon as I touch my hair after applying the spray my hair feels soft. It's not a natural soft though you can tell there is product on my hair but it's still nice, and as my hair is quite thick I find the dry shampoo actually makes it easier to put my hair up!
Once you have massaged your hair you may notice your hair looks lighter especially if you have darker hair. To get rid of these light patches brush your hair thoroughly. I think the end result is very good!
My hair does look fresher after use and the added softness although it may not be natural it makes it easier to put my thick hair up.
The strong scent at the beginning soon disappears like I said before it leaves a light scent, the scent lingers for quite some time and often at the end of the day when I take my hair down I can still smell it a bit.
The 150ml can lasts me a long time as I only use it three or four times a month, so for £2 or thereabouts it's great value for money and the best thing is, it actually works and does what it claims to!
The only downside to the product is probably the fact the spray comes out very quickly at first, once you get used to it this isn't a problem and it doesn't take that long to get used to which is good! Otherwise I love it!
- Other Information -
You can also purchase Batiste dry shampoo in a travel size can which is great for popping into your handbag or taking on holiday.
Batiste make a range of dry shampoos which include Blush, Tropical, Brunette, Diva, Fresh and a couple of others so there should be something to suit most people.
I find they are easy to get hold of most Boots and supermarkets stock them and I even picked up this original one from a very small Tesco.
The caution on the can says that this product is extremely flammable and you shouldn't keep it in direct sunlight!
Overall I love this product and I will be purchasing it again.
5 Dooyoo Stars- Highly Recommended.
Months ago I saw adverts for this film on the internet way before it had been advertised on UK television. I thought the adverts looked really good and something I'd possibly watch.
What persuaded me to watch the film was the fact Dianna Agron who plays a main role in the TV show Glee was in this film and I wanted to see what she was like outside of the TV show, and the same with Alex Pettyfer I wanted to see what he was like in a film other than Wild Child.
- Plot -
I Am Number Four is about a teenage boy who is secretly an Alien. John Smith looks like any other human being and acts like your usual teenager, but he is an Alien.
John used to live on a planet called planet Lorian, when he was a child his planet got invaded by the Mogadorians who are a group of mean, scary looking aliens. The Mogadorians destroyed Lorian killing everyone but they were unaware at the time that John and eight other children were sent down to Earth.
Eventually the Mogadorians discover that these nine children had escaped and are now living on Earth, they come to Earth in search of them to try and kill them. These Lorian children can only been killed in sequence of number and each child has a number 1 to 9.
Three of the Lorian's have already been killed and John is number four. John and his guardian Henri have to move everytime a Lorian child is killed so that the Mogadorians don't know where he is.
John and Henri move to Paradise, Ohio where John meets a new friend called Sam. Sam is a bit of a science nerd and the popular kids bully him.
John also meets and falls in love with a girl called Sarah.
John and Sarah become very close and when Sarah's ex-boyfriend finds out they are dating he gets jealous and causes trouble at the Spring Fair. They attempt to beat John up but John is able to use his special powers to get them off and rescue Sarah. Unaware to John, Sam follows him and see's his special powers and John is forced to tell Sam the truth.
Henri explains to John that they have to leave Ohio as people are becoming suspicious of them but John doesn't want to leave as he is in love with Sarah.
The Mogadorians arrive in Ohio and so does Number Six. Number Six helps John who is Number Four and they work together to try and kill the Mogadorians.
I won't give anymore of the plot away as this is where all the action happens and I don't want to give anything away if your planning to watch it!!
- The Cast -
Alex Pettyfer plays the leading male role, his character is John Smith (Number Four.) I have only ever seen Pettyfer in 'Wild Child' in which his role was to play a pretty boy so this film is a big step up for him and has shown his potential to play a much bigger role.
I think Alex did a brilliant job in portraying his character John and the connection between him and his love interest Sarah was really good and you could tell there was chemistry between the characters.
The only thing I could criticise is the fact Alex is from the UK and so naturally has a British accent, he puts on a very good American accent during the film but at times it seemed to suddenly be British.
Otherwise I think he did a great job and let's face it he's pretty easy on the eye! Especially when he's just in his swimming trunks!
Dianna Agron plays the leading lady, Sarah Hart. Having only seen Dianna act in Glee I was interested in what she was like in a film. I think she did a great job and again this film has shown that she can do bigger things when Glee ends.
Her character is a sweet girl who keeps herself to herself at school due to previous history with others that didn't go so well. She is a big photography fan and spends most of her time behind the lens of her many interesting cameras.
As I said before the chemistry between her character and John seems very believable.
Overall I think Agron did a fantastic job and even though she's in her mid-twenties in real life she pulls of playing a teenager very well!
Callan McAuliffe plays Sam Goode, John's nerdy friend. His character is a sweet boy who gets bullied at school as he is into Science and he is quite nerdy. I ended up really liking this character as you find out that he has trouble in his home life and his dad is no longer around. I won't give away where his dad is as it gives the film away a little bit.
Callan is only 16 so about the same age as his character is meant to be and he did a good job. His character says some funny lines and Callan had a great facial expression to go with the lines!
Timothy Olyphant plays John's guardian Henri. He isn't in the whole film but he does a great job!
Teresa Palmer plays Number Six. Again she isn't in the whole film but when she comes in all the action starts and she does a brilliant job when it comes to the action scenes!
- My Thoughts -
This film has action from the get go until the end and is pretty jam packed with some fantastic action and special effect scenes! I'm not a huge fan of action and I didn't realise how much action this film had in it as it was compared to the Twilight Saga.
I personally don't think the two films are alike, the only way I can see they are alike is the fact in both a human girl falls in love with a non-human. Other than that I Am Number Four would attract more males due to the large amount of action.
I'm surprised they didn't release the film in 3D as it would make a brilliant 3D film, there are lots of things that could pop out of the screen. Although for me it's probably a good thing it wasn't in 3D as I jumped out of my seat enough times during the 110 minutes.
There are alot of 'jumpy' moments, I think what makes it more jumpy is the fact you can't predict everything that happens.
Like every film you can predict a certain amount and guess what may happen and I'm very good at predicting what is going to happen in a film.
But I found myself really surprised at some points during it and I had no idea it was going to happen, especially one thing in the middle and another thing near the end. And this made it all the more 'jumpier' for me and I flew out of my seat on those two occasions, I don't think I've ever jumped that bad before!
I'm not all that clued up on special effects but to me they seemed very good and worked well within the film.
I have seen some bad reviews for this film and I really don't understand it?! I throughly enjoyed it and so did my friends who have seen it. I actually saw this film with a friend and we have different taste when it comes to films but we both liked this one! Oh well, everyone can have their opinion!
But overall I loved it and I would definitely purchase it on DVD when it comes out.
It has a good plot with strong acting, and is full of action so it appeals to all. I suppose I agree with the fact it's more for teens and young adults as I can't imagine my mum watching it!
- Other Info -
I Am Number Four was directed by D.J Caruso and is based on the book written by Jobie Hughes and James Frey.
The film was produced by Michael Bay & Steven Speilburg through DreamWorks.
I Am Number Four is currently on in Cinemas and is rated at 12A, I wouldn't take a child younger than 12 even if they are going with a parent! They may get some nightmares.
If you would rather read the book you can pick up a copy from Amazon.co.uk from £4.49 or I think you can get them in Tesco, Asda and any other book shop.
5 Dooyoo Stars
I have wanted to try this Max Factor mascara for some time and finally a few weeks ago I decided to buy it. I've read some brilliant reviews on it and thought that parting with £10.99 for a mascara may just be worth it.
I went into my local Boots and picked up the black chunky tube from the Max Factor section, there were only about 4 tubes left which generally means good things about the product.
- Using The Mascara -
When I got home I took the plastic wrapper off the tube which proved somewhat a little bit difficult! Once I had managed to get the plastic off I opened the lid and pulled out the wand. I was surprised by how big the wand is, it's very chunky and has lots of small bristles on it, it looks kind of like a very small wire brush.
I usually use a 'spoon effect' wand with mascara and this is the first time for a while that I haven't used one. The Max Factor wand is a normal straight wand.
As normal I curled my lashes before applying the False Lash Effect mascara. When I began to apply it I kept getting mascara on my eyelid, I guess this is to do with the wand being quite chunky and big. I carried on and after about 5 minutes of trying to get a false lash look on one of my eyes I gave up and went onto the other eye.
The end result left me feeling very disappointed!
I definitely had darker eyelashes and they were a fraction longer but not by alot, as for the volume and this false look I had none of that! On a close look my lashes looked clumpy and like I'd put to much mascara on, but I had only applied one coat and then tried to fan my lashes out but it just didn't work!
After using the mascara for two days I gave up and went back to my Maybelline Falsies mascara which is cheaper and gives a far better result.
But after spending £10.99 on the Max Factor mascara I went back to give it another go. This time I wiped some of the mascara off the wand before applying it and my lashes didn't look as clumpy but they still didn't have anywhere near a false lash effect.
I've continued to use the mascara for the past few weeks and only yesterday I finally got a good result! I spent about 15 minutes on my lashes and somehow got a longer more voluminous look. My theory is that the mascara has been opened and so it's had time to dry out slightly giving a better result.
But still 15 minutes on just my lashes I think is a bit ridiculous and I don't have time to do that every morning!
After a whole day wearing the mascara my disappointment continued. After about 7 hours of having the mascara on bits kept flaking off and I would get small bits of black under my eyes. This doesn't happen everytime and it's only occurred about 3 times in the past few weeks, but it's still not great when your at work and your eyes are flaking!!
- Removal -
I use a make up wipe to remove the mascara and it comes off okay. It's a bit harder to remove compared to other mascara's I have used but still with a good wipe it comes off and leaves my lashes natural.
As far as I'm aware it's not waterproof, and it has stayed on well while I've been in the light rain. I haven't been in really heavy rain wearing it but as it's harder to take off at the end of the day I would assume it's pretty good!
- Overall -
Overall I am not impressed with this mascara. I had high hopes for it after reading many positive reviews for months but, it just hasn't worked for me.
I love the tube the mascara comes in, it's black in colour, chunky, quite plain yet it still manages to be eye catching and somewhat professional looking. And it holds 13.1ml of mascara for £10.99 where you can purchase it in Boots, Superdrug and supermarkets.
I think the mascara needs time to dry out a bit before you can get a decent look from it, but then I still don't get a false lash effect and I'm getting to the point where I just want to chuck it away. I tend to only use the mascara on weekends when I have more time to spend applying it to get that better look, but I can't justify 15 minutes on just my lashes! Using Maybelline Falsie's I get a better look in just 2 minutes!
Maybe I just got a bad tube of the mascara but I still won't be purchasing it again!
(Once opened it can be used for up to 6 months and comes in colours Black, Black/Brown & Waterproof)
2 Dooyoo stars
Not really recommended.
We used to have normal Sky television, but I kept missing some TV programmes I really wanted to watch so I looked into Sky Plus. Eventually I came to the conclusion Sky Plus would cost to much and I'd be better off getting a Freeview Plus box instead for a simple one off payment instead of the monthly bills like Sky.
I did a little bit of research online to see where I could get the best deal and what sort of box would be best for me.
But online many of the Freeview box's I wanted were out of stock and so on a shopping trip I decided I would just go and buy a Box.
I went into a PC World store which I actually don't visit often and so I was surprised when I found this Sagemcom Freeview + HD Box. It had everything I wanted- It records programmes and you can pause and rewind live TV, without the monthly cost like Sky.
At the time it was on offer and cost me £199, the normal price I think was about £230. Although the price seems to vary alot depending where you shop!
The guy in the shop was very helpful and he got me the last one they had in stock, which I was very glad about as they didn't seem to have many other Freeview box's as good as this one.
I took my new purchase home feeling very proud of myself for some reason and emptied the box which included, the Freeview Box, 1 Power Supply Unit, 1 Remote Control and Batteries, 1 HDMI Lead and The User Manual.
The Freeview Box itself isn't exactly what I'd call attractive, probably a disadvantage from Sky as Sky box's are quite nice, but as it's black in colour it blends in really well on my TV unit and you can't really see it.
It's very much a small rectangular box, no curves or fancy design. But at only 25cms long and approx 5Cms high you don't need any fancy design.
- Set Up -
Getting the Box set up is very easy! I was able to plug it in and set it up by myself with only the help of the users manual which comes in the box. I was very impressed with myself as not only did I have to plug the Freeview Box in but I had to sort all the wires out for the DVD player, Playstation and Wii. So believe me when I say it's easy to install and figure out where to plug the wires in etc.
The Freeview Box only comes with a HDMI cable which gets you HD television so you may find yourself needing to purchase a few extra cables if you do not already have them. The extra cables you may need is if you have a hi-fi unit and home theatre system which you wish to connect to your Freeview Box.
And make sure you have SCART leads for connecting your DVD player and such gadgets, as again these are not included with the Freeview Box.
Once you're all wired up you have to do the setup procedure, this is easy and you just follow the clear guidelines in the user manual. This just goes through things like Language, Country, Parental Codes and then it will do a channel search to pick up Television channels and radio stations.
Once I had got it up and running in around 10-15 minutes I had a little play to see how good this Freeview Box was!
As I have said the main reason for me purchasing this was so I could record programmes I would miss so straight away I went to check out the recording process.
When I had found the programme I was looking for I pressed the little red record button on the bottom of the Sagemcom remote control which comes with the Freeview Box. A notice came up on the screen telling me that the programme I wanted to record was part of a series and if I would like to record it as a series.
I clicked the yes button. This means that when this programme comes on, the Freeview Box will automatically record it!
You can also record one off programmes or if you want to record just one episode of a series you can, you just press 'no' if you don't want to record the whole series.
This Freeview Box allows you to record one programme and watch another live or you can recored two programmes at once.
And you are also able to watch a programme you have paused while recording another programme or watch a recorded programme and record one or two other programmes. (I hope that makes sense!)
The Freeview Box can hold up to 180 hours of recordings and you can record normal channels or in HD.
The series I currently have on automatic record I have also secured so they are on lock and nobody can delete them unless they know the code. This is a nice feature as I know someone would accidentally delete it. As they are secured they go into a separate folder compared with other programmes which I have recorded.
- Other Features -
Now onto the other features.
The electronic TV Guide is your average TV guide- it has the list of channels and at what time the programmes are on. A red vertical line goes down the screen which indicates how long a programme has left, I quite like this as it means if a programme is near the end I know not to bother watching it.
It also has an 8 day TV Guide so you can see what is on TV in the days to come.
The only disadvantage is that the guide doesn't have a page up or page down button, this can be quite annoying if you want to browse through the channels quickly.
Play, Pause, Rewind & Fast Forward.
When you are watching live television you can pause it at any time by pressing the pause button on the remote. It's great if you need to answer the phone, need the loo or sort little ones out. To resume the programme you were watching you press the play button and the programme will start where you paused it so you don't miss out on anything!
You can also rewind live TV but you must have been already watching the programme to rewind it. If you press the rewind button several times you can increase the rewind speed, and it's possible to rewind 1 or 2 hours.
You can't fast forward live TV so no skipping the adverts. But you can fast forward recorded or paused programmes, it works in the same way as rewind, if you press the fast forward button several times it will speed up the process until it reaches live TV.
I think it's great you can pause TV, although I haven't used it as much as I thought I would. I guess this is because I'm not a huge television watcher and the programmes I do watch I generally sit through the whole episode.
But still it's a really handy feature and when watching recorded programmes I like being able to skip the adverts!
The other feature is favourite channel list, you can select all of your favourite channels or radio stations and put them into a favourites list.
This is pretty handy if you don't know what number your favourite channel is, instead of searching through the TV guide which could take a while you can go into your favourites and quickly find it.
The HD (High Definition) side of things. We are all set up for HD TV but unfortunately we still have to wait a while until we can receive it in our area! I can't comment on how good the HD is, but already compared to the freeview that came with the TV we have a better quality picture with his Sagemcom Freeview Box.
So I have high hopes for when we are able to receive HD channels!
The Remote Control-
The remote that comes with the Freeview Box is a nice size. It's not chunky like the Sky controller and it's 18cms in length. Compared to the appearance of the Box the remote is attractive! It's black in colour with a small silver strip down the sides. Even though it's small I wouldn't say the buttons are all cramped up, they are a decent size but people with really large fingers may have a bit of trouble.
The buttons are well labelled and it's clear to see what you are about to press.
The only thing you can't do with the remote is change the volume, I have to use the original TV controller to change the volume.
A slight problem with the remote is that you have to press it directly at the Freeview Box for it to change channel etc. I find with the Sky remote I didn't have to point it directly. On a lazy day this can be annoying but I'm now used to it and so I automatically direct it at the box.
The remote takes 2 AAA batteries which are supplied.
- Overall -
I am extremely impressed with this Sagemcom Freeview+ HD Box. I had only heard of Sagemcom a few times before so I didn't really know what to expect compared to other brands, but I have been pleasantly surprised and a few months down the line since purchasing this product I am still very happy with it.
I have definitely saved money by having this instead of Sky+ and I don't really miss Sky at all even though I have less channels.
The only two disadvantages for me is the fact there is no page up/ page down button on the TV guide and that you have to point the remote directly at the Freeview Box as it doesn't change channel even if the remote is very slightly not pointing the Box. Sometimes remotes have a little give in them so it doesn't have to be pointed directly at the Box. But these are just two small disadvantages and nothing that makes the Box unusable!
The Freeview Box is worth 5 Stars with it's 320GB memory, 180 Hours of recording time, pause, rewind, fast forward. It's exactly what I wanted at what I think is a reasonable price.
Since I have purchased it in PC World I can't seem to find it online, but you can get it on Amazon.co.uk, Comet and if you look around I'm sure you can find it in other places too.
Like I said prices seem to vary from £189-£200+.
I am a huge Glee fan, so for me this was a must have as I love singing along to their songs.
It's a game for the Nintendo Wii console based on the American TV show Glee.
This game is called Karaoke Revolution so as you can guess it's to do with singing. It's very much like the Playstation's Singstar games, Lips for the Xbox and Wii Sing.
The game comes in your usual DVD like case, it's bold, bright and has pictures of season 1's main characters on the front.
On the back of the case it gives you the song list, there are 29 songs from Season 1. (I will post all songs at the end of the review.)
This game comes with the microphone, but you can also purchase the game without it. The microphone is black in colour and fairly small, but it's good. As it's small it's easy to store away when it's not in use and it's really easy to hold.
It's a USB microphone and you simply plug it into the USB slot located at the back of the Wii.
The cord is pretty long, my Wii is on the shelf underneath the TV and I am able to sit or stand up with plenty of cord left so I can move around at ease.
Once your microphone is plugged in your all set to go!
When your on the main Wii menu click the Glee picture and it will load up, it will come to a picture of the Glee Cast and as I found out if you wait about 2 minutes it will automatically start showing a song and video which is quite cool! Otherwise just press A and it goes to the options page.
Your options are:
*Scrap Book Mode
*Quick Play Mode
*Shooting Stars Mode
Scrap Book Mode is where you will find songs preformed by each Glee character. Click on your favourite character and your able to sing to their songs from Season 1. If you sing well enough you can unlock items.
Quick Play you basically just go down the list and pick a song, you then have the choice to sing the song solo, Co-op or as part of a duet. And the good thing about this mode is that you can challenge how good you are and set the difficulty between easy, medium and hard.
Shooting Star is almost the same as Quick play (you pick the songs, difficulty etc in the same way) but it's an interactive game for up to 6 people and you can gain bonus points.
I have played this by myself and it's the same as Quick Play, so I don't really understand this option! I guess it's better for when there are 2 or more players.
Options is for you to turn the song lyrics off or on and to adjust the audio settings. Nothing to exciting!
- Playing The Game -
When you've picked your song the lyrics will be shown along the very bottom of the screen and just above the lyrics are the bars in which you have to try and sing to that note. And then the actual video of the song your singing will be shown.
I know most of the Glee songs and so most of the time I don't have to look at the lyrics which is probably a good thing as the lyrics go by so quickly it can be really hard to keep up and even read!
Songs like 'Bust A Move' and 'Gold Digger' which have fast rapping can be very hard due to the fact they are fast songs so the lyrics go by so quick.
When you sing a song like 'Don't Stop Believing' in Scrapbook mode, even though you've chosen to sing as your favourite character you have to sing the whole song! So if you've picked to sing as Rachel you still have to sing Finn's part. This means you have to change how you sing, Finn has a much lower voice than Rachel and Rachel has a powerful higher voice. So you sing low for Finn's part then as soon as it's Rachel's bit you have to go much higher.
This doesn't bother me to much, as if I had to sing like Rachel for the whole song I wouldn't be getting any points!
But for others they may find it annoying.
Another thing is when singing 'Proud Mary' and some other songs in which the whole Glee Cast sing they have put the main part you are singing then straight away a back up part which again you have to sing. This is a little hard as you don't have time to take a breath and so you miss the back up part and miss out on points. And in reality there are 12 members of the Glee Club and one of me! So for one player this is quite hard and maybe something the makers of this game should have thought of first!
This is probably the only main annoyance for me.
On the plus side the game does have a few extra's which haven't been aired before! I really love the fact you get to see the whole video for Quinn's 'Say A Little Prayer' this is a great extra.
There is also unseen bits from 'Taking Chances', 'Can't Fight This Feeling' and you are able to see some small extended clips of the Glee Cast learning how to use wheelchairs during some songs/videos.
I haven't sang duet or co-op yet as I only have one microphone, which is the one that comes with the game. To sing as a duet you will need to purchase another mic. As far as I'm aware you could be able to use Wii Sing microphones, as long as it plugs into the USB I guess it should work, you can get a microphone for around £11 on Amazon.
- Overall -
This game is great for any Glee fan and I'm glad I have it! I think I've already got my money's worth out of the game and my Wii is now being used again!
As I have said it has a few good extras and unseen footage that hasn't been aired before.
The game was released November 2010, so just in time for Christmas. But I feel it may have been rushed to get it out on time. There seem to be a few bad points (already mentioned) about having to sing the main vocals and then straight after the back up and having no time to take a breath.
I think if Konami the makers of this game took their time a bit more they could have produced a far better game! The Scrapbook mode could also be made alot better, as the items you unlock are actually only a few stickers and for me to notice that I had to read a review on Amazon otherwise I'd still be none the wiser as to what the unlocked items are.
I am still going to give the game 4 Stars as I really enjoy it! I'm not to fussed about the bad bits as I'm not into getting points I just want to sing Glee songs and it's perfect for that, if you don't mind missing out on getting some points while singing.
And the songs they have on the game are brilliant, there is a good choice and something for everyone. Hopefully they will bring out another Glee Karaoke game with songs from Season 2 on it and maybe they will have got rid of the bad bits and taken their time on the next game if they make one.
I got this game from Amazon.co.uk and I paid £29.99 for it.
The price keeps going up and down since it's been released and Amazon are now selling it through Lincus Internet Sales and not themselves.
You can also get it from Play.Com.
- Song List -
1.) And I Am Telling You I Am Not Going
2.) Bust A Move
3.) Can't Fight This Feeling
4.) Defying Gravity
5.) Don't Rain On My Parade
6.) Don't Stand So Close To Me / Young Girl (Mash Up)
7.) Don't Stop Believin'
8.) Endless Love
9.) Gold Digger
10.) Hair / Crazy In Love (Mash Up)
11.) Hate On Me
12.) I Say A Little Prayer
13.) I'll Stand By You
15.) Keep Holding On
16.) Lean On Me
17.) Leaving On A Jet Plane
18.) My Life Would Suck Without You
19.) No Air
20.) Papa Don't Preach
21.) Proud Mary
22.) Push It
23.) Smile (Charlie Chaplin Cover)
24.) Smile (Lily Allen Cover)
25.) Somebody To Love
26.) Sweet Caroline
27.) Taking Chances
28.) True Colours
29.) You Can't Always Get What You Want
4 DooYoo Stars
I have short eyelashes so I'm always on the look out for a mascara that will give them length, a slight curl and boldness. I had been looking at false eyelashes for a while but decided against them when I saw an advert for this Maybelline Falsies mascara.
The advert claimed the mascara would give a false eyelash effect which sounded good to me. So i went into my local Boots and picked a tube up, it was on promotion and cost me around the £5 or £6 mark.
The chunky 9ml tube is a bold purple colour with shimmery blue/green writing on it. I find it's pretty eye catching and I have no problem looking out for it while I'm shopping.
It's a nice tube and easy to hold as it has that chunkiness, it doesn't slip out of your hand.
The mascara brush is a spoon design which means it has a curve in the middle. This is my favourite kind of brush as I find it gives more volume and boldness, this Falsie's mascara does exactly that.
It's a big brush and quite thick, but the bristles are fairly soft and nice on the lashes. I haven't had any problems when using the brush, except for those of you who haven't used a brush like it before, it may take a bit of getting used to.
When I pull the brush out a good amount of mascara comes out, sometimes I have to take some off the brush but very rarely. It has a light mascara scent to it but it's not at all overpowering and you can only smell it when you sniff the tube.
I use an eye lash curler with this mascara and then apply it. I was very impressed with the first application, my lashes had so much more volume and boldness than with any other mascara I have used before.
My lashes also had the fanned out effect which is promised by Maybelline. I tend to use about one or two coats and I find that's just right for my lashes, anything more and I do get a spider leg look which is never good!
I get a slight curl with this mascara but only if I use my curlers with it too.
Overall I was very impressed, but I wouldn't say it made my lashes look overly false. This didn't bother me though as it made them look much more bolder than other mascaras I have used and since I have purchased another tube.
I haven't mentioned anything about how much length Falsie's give.
The other day I was going through my make up bag and found an old mascara and decided I'd better use it up before it goes out of the time limit in which it's best to use a mascara for.
I put it on and was surprised at how long my lashes looked, I then realised that Falsie's hadn't actually made my lashes that much longer, but I didn't notice at first as I was so happy with the boldness.
After enjoying having lovely long lashes, but not enjoying not having any boldness to them using my old mascara I decided to apply Falsie's over the top.
Just one coat of Falsie's over the top of my old mascara it made them bold, long and voluminous!
Wearing both mascaras made them look that bit more false and I actually got a comment asking if I had false lashes on.
- Overall -
I have been very happy with this mascara and as I have said it gives you bold, voluminous, fanned out lashes which is what Maybelline promise.
As it say's on the Boots website- 'The Pro-Keratin and Fibre formula is designed to deliver immediate results, distributing volume and visible intensity to your lashes.'
The only down side to the mascara is that it doesn't give much length. It's easily resolved if you can find a cheap mascara that lengthens then you will get the false lash effect.
For £8.19 (from Boots) I think it's a reasonable price to pay and the mascara lasts a quite a long time depending on how much you use it. You can keep the mascara for 6 months then it's recommended you don't use it after that time.
The next mascara I'm going to try is Max Factor's False Lash Effect if I don't like that I will most probably go back to this Falsie's one until I find something else to try.
You can purchase it in black noir and as far as I'm aware that's the only colour.
This one I'm reviewing isn't waterproof, so far I haven't had any trouble with it smudging while I've been in the rain and I've actually been in the shower with it on and if I'm careful it hasn't smudged but 95% of the time it will smudge in the shower and give you panda eyes!
Maybelline have now got a waterproof version & a black drama version available.
My Rating: 4 Dooyoo Stars
I am a Gleek! (Someone who loves Glee.) When I first saw the adverts for this American musical comedy-drama television show back in late 2009/ early 2010 I decided I would watch it.
When the time came I put on E4 and my first thought's were it's good, but I wasn't overly impressed. At the end of the first episode called 'Pilot' my mind changed, the Glee club preformed Journey's 'Don't Stop Believing' and I loved it! And the rest is history, I am now a Gleek and proud of it!
- What Is A Glee Club? -
Before I write about Glee for those who haven't heard about it before you may not know what a 'Glee Club' actually is.
It's mostly an American high school activity where students form a show choir group 'Glee Club' in which they sing, dance and just preform. They then compete against other high schools in competitions.
- What Is Glee About? -
Glee is a musical comedy-drama show based on a fictional high school's Glee Club, who get ready to compete for the first time against other Glee clubs.
It starts off with a few members who are considered school losers and throughout the series gains more members, some of which are popular students from the Cheerios (cheerleaders) and the school's football team.
When popular boy Finn gets made to join the New Directions Glee Club he doesn't like it, but after a while he realises how much he enjoys being able to sing and dance.
Bossy, annoying, but amazingly talented Rachel develops a crush on Finn and his then girlfriend Quinn, the head cheerleader gets jealous and joins the club along with two other Cheerios. But unknown to the other Glee Club members they are out to destroy it, made to by the Cheerio's coach Sue Sylvester.
As the series goes on the show focus' on many real life situations such as sexuality, relationships, appearance and pregnancies.
Some of the students who were set out to destroy the Glee Club actually end up loving it and find that it's the best part of their day.
Many things happen during the 22 episodes of the first season, which I don't want to give away if your thinking of watching it.
- My Thoughts -
The show is often compared to High School Musical, I can see why some people would see this but personally I don't think the two are alike except the singing and dancing part.
Glee is for teenagers and young adults, so it has more mature adult based story lines unlike the children's movie HSM.
The songs are also not cheesy and the Glee club cover songs already done by people such as Lady GaGa, Madonna, Journey, Queen etc.
The songs are preformed very well and they all have fantastic voices, even though some Glee Club members have stronger voices than others but this doesn't effect the show.
In my opinion I think Rachel gets to many solos in season 1 and it would have been much nicer to hear some of the others sing more e.g Quinn & Puck.
But so far in Season 2 Rachel does seem to have less solos, and it's being shared out more with the others.
The show has many funny moments and cheerleader Brittany can come out with some brilliant lines along with the Cheerio's coach Sue! But even though it's a funny show the dramatic scenes are acted out very well too!
- Other Info -
Glee was created by Ryan Murphy, Brad Falchuk and Ian Brennan. Murphy is also well known for other shows such as Nip/Tuck and popular.
So far all of season 1 has been aired. And the UK are a few episodes into season 2, which is shown on E4 and E4+1 on Mondays at 9pm. (10pm on E4+1)
The show is a massive hit in America and seems to have done brilliantly over here too.
Glee has won and been nominated for a number of awards including Golden Globes, People's choice awards, Dorian awards, Emmys, Teen Choice awards and many more. Most of which they have won!
- The Talented Cast -
(Main Cast of season 1)
Lea Michele: Plays bossy, annoying, yet amazingly talented Rachel Berry.
Cory Monteith: Plays the popular quarter back of the football team Finn Hudson.
Dianna Agron: Plays the popular, pretty head cheerleader Quinn Fabray.
Mark Salling: Plays bad boy Noah Puckerman 'Puck'.
Chris Colfer: Plays fashionable, gay Kurt Hummel.
Kevin McHale: Plays wheelchair bound Artie Abrahams.
Amber Riley: Plays diva Mercedes Jones.
Jenna Ushkowitz: Plays shy, fake stuttering Tina Cohen-Chang.
Matthew Morrison: Plays the Glee Club teacher William Schuester (Mr Schue)
Jane Lynch: Plays the mean, hilarious cheerleader coach Sue Sylvester.
Jayma Mays: Plays teacher Emma Pilsbury- who has romantic feelings for married Mr Schuester.
Some other cast members who aren't considered main cast in season 1 are:
Naya Rivera- Santana Lopez
Heather Morris- Brittany Pierce
Harry Shum Jr- Mike Chang
I think the cast are brilliant and it really shows in the series!
Throughout the show they also have guest stars such as Olivia Newton-John, Neil Patrick Harris and Josh Groban.
And now going into Season 2 they have a few more guest stars, Britney Spears!
- Overall -
I am a Gleek and proud! I am hooked to the TV when Glee is on and I just love it!
They do a range of songs from old to new and have some good dance moves to go with them.
It's a fun yet serious programme for teenagers and young adults! I give it 5 Stars.
There are many different Milk Formulas available and it's often hard to know which one to go for as they all claim different things and to be nearly as good as breast milk.
The reason I chose SMA is because it has been around for 90 years and is the Formula I had when I was a baby along with my older sibling.
SMA Gold is the Formula that is suitable from Birth onwards (the one pictured.)
It comes in a 900g very sturdy tin and also ready made cartons. The tin has slightly changed to become more modernised, but is still yellow with SMA Gold clearly written on it, so you won't miss it when out shopping.
The Formula is whey dominant and has an alpha-protein in which is a high quality protein and abundant in breast milk.
Protein is essential in babies, as it helps their growth and development.
The Formula also contains Omega 3 and 6. Omega 3 and 6 is known to help brain and eye development.
SMA Gold is said to be an easy digest Formula meaning it is kind on the little ones stomach and kidneys.
- Using SMA Gold -
As I Have said it comes in a sturdy tin, the yellow plastic top pulls off easily and there is a layer of foil covering the actual Formula keeping it fresh while in the shops.
The Formula is a light coloured powder and extremely easy to scoop up in the scoop provided in the Formula.
One level scoop of Formula equals one ounce.
E.g- 5 Ounces of water = 5 level scoops of Formula.
On the side of the tin is a guideline on how much Formula your baby should have. Although every baby is different so they may be having a bit more or less milk compared to the guideline.
But I have found it interesting to look at.
I haven't had any problems with SMA Gold. Little one took to Formula very well and guzzled the bottle within minutes.
Little one was always happy in between feeds and was never sick after a bottle!
The Formula really helped Little one to grow and develop.
- Other SMA Products & Prices -
SMA make the Gold Formula in many different ways:
You can purchase it in a 900g tin for around £7.25, I have always seen this in every supermarket and it is widely available.
Ready made cartons in 1Ltr or 250ml. 1 Litre will set you back £1.90 and 250ml 56p.
These ready made cartons are great if your out and about or Little One is having a day/ few hours without you!
Starter Pack- 12 x 100ml bottles. £14.98
These are the bottles you get when your in hospital, you can now purchase them for home use.
SMA Gold is suitable from birth to 6 months old or onwards. At 6 months SMA make a Follow On Formula which is to complement weaning.
*SMA Gold (Birth Onwards)
*SMA Follow On (6 Months Onwards)
*SMA Toddler Milk (1 Year Onwards)
*SMA Extra Hungry
*SMA Staydown Milk
*SMA Lactose-Free (LF)
*SMA Soya (Wysoy)
They also make special milk for premature babies and babies with increased energy and nutrient requirements.
- Overall -
It's hard to write about Formula as you can't really recommend it as every baby is different.
But it has been a brilliant Formula for Little one and I wouldn't use any other Formula in the future.
Even though you may get through a tin a week it's price is quite good. It is one of the cheaper Formulas on the market.
And as I have said it can be purchased anywhere!
5 DooYoo Stars.
I read a review on these facial wipes several months ago and I was very impressed with what I read. After using up my previous face wipes I purchased a packet of these Tesco Vitamin E facial wipes.
I got them in my local Tesco store, it didn't take me long to find them even though the packet has now changed from the picture above. Instead of the packet being two colours it's now just the peachy/ coral colour all over.
To open the packet there is a sticky label. I thought that as cheap Tesco product this may be a the products let down as there is nothing worse than a sticky label that looses it's stick after a few uses!
But to my surprise I have opened and closed the label many times and it's still sticking down perfectly keeping the face wipes from drying out and keeping them nice and fresh!
As you open the label your greeted with a nice scent. It's a fresh, slightly sweet smell that reminds me of flowers. Nothing too overpowering.
The wipes themselves are a decent size and no different to any other wipe I have used- branded or shops own.
Compared to my previous wipes these are a tiny but thinner. Although they are that bit thinner it hasn't been a problem and there have been no breakages!
I tend to use the face wipes at the end of the day to take my make up off and give my face a bit of freshening up.
So far the face wipes have been successful at removing my make up!
My previous face wipes I had to really wipe my eye to get my mascara off which caused a bit of redness. So far I have used both of my mascaras and these Tesco wipes get it off without having to make my eyes sore!!
I was surprised while using the wipes for the first time as it felt like I was washing my face instead of using the facial wipe, just without the soap bubbles.
After use my face felt very clean, fresh and soft.
The scent you first get with the wipes sadly don't linger on your face. It's a shame as it's a pleasant smell.
I like the fact these wipes have added Vitamin E, I feel it gives my skin that bit of extra nourishment that it may not usually get.
The packet claims that the wipes have been enriched with Vitamin E as it's an anti-oxidant, protecting and conditioning.
There are 25 wipes in a packet, I find they last me approximately a month as I only use 1 a day or none on a sunday when I tend not to wear make up.
- Other Information -
It doesn't have any storage information on the packet (of which I can find), so I have kept these in my wardrobe or on a shelve near a window.
No matter where I have left them they have stayed moist and when I put a wipe to my face they always feel nice and cool.
Your meant to use the wipes within three months of opening and do not flush them down the toilet! Dispose them with household waste.
The wipes are dermatologically tested and are alcohol free.
On the packet it says to avoid contact with eyes. I do use these on my eyes, when my eyelids are closed and I have had no irritation. Over the past few weeks the wipes have not affected my face at all, except only in good ways!
As it's a Tesco product the facial wipes can only be purchased in their stores or online.
Tesco do a Vitamin E range to go with the wipes which I feel I will try out!
The best thing about the wipes is that they cost a bargain of only 72p!!!
- Overall -
At 72p I don't think you can go wrong, even if the wipes turned out to be rubbish!
But they are infact one of the best facial wipes I have used!
As I have said my face feels fresh and clean and the most important thing is it gets my make up off without irritation.
I am unaware of any other face wipe with Vitamin E that costs just 72p.
I know Boots do their own Vitamin E wipe but that will set you back just over £2.
I am extremely pleased with this purchase and I will continue to use these even if the price does increase- which I hope it doesn't!
5 DooYoo Stars- Highly Recommended