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beanie85

beanie85
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Member since: 09.04.2008

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      28.04.2010 21:07
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      An interesting read for movie lovers!

      I bought this book a few years ago, I saw it on offer and my morbid curiosity got the better of me! The book is called The Hollywood Book of Death, and on the front cover it says that it has in it "The bizarre, often sordid, passings of more than 123 American movie and TV idols" and I thought it sounded quite interesting!

      The book is a paperback, which is a navy blue colour and is quite thick at 411 pages. On the front over there are also pictures of some of the famous stars that are in the book such as Elvis Presley, Marilyn Monroe, Audrey Hepburn and a few others.

      The book is split into seven main sections and the stars are divided into the sections depending on how they died. These different sections are 'Accidental Deaths', 'Alcohol and Drugs', 'In Obscurity', 'Murders', 'Natural Causes', 'Puzzling Deaths' and 'Suicides'. Unsurprisingly 'Natural Causes' and 'Suicides' are the largest sections. I liked how the book was organised in this manner, I didn't read the sections in order and I read the ones that sounded the most interesting first!

      Each star has their own chapter in their appropriate section, and under each stars name is their date of birth and their date of death. Each stars chapter varies in length from one page to several pages and each chapter holds a lot of information and most chapter includes where the star came from, a small biography, what films they were in, their state of health and mind and then how they died. I know it all sounds slightly morbid but I did find it a fascinating read.

      There are some black and white pictures next to some of the stars chapters, but not next to all of them, which made the star quite hard to picture if I didn't know who they were, and I have found myself a few times searching online to find out what they looked like, or to find out more about who they were or what film or tv productions they had been in.

      I really enjoyed reading this book, however a lot of the stars were ones that died a long, long time ago and I had no idea who they were.. but it was still interesting reading their stories! There were also a lot of stars who I had heard of, but had no idea of how they passed so that was also interesting to find out.

      At the very back of the book are two appendixes, the first one has a list of 'Notable Hollywood Actors and Directors' in alphabetical order with their dates of birth and dates of death, there must be close to two thousand names in this section. I guess it's quite handy if you want to look up when someone died, but I personally haven't paid much attention to this section. The second appendix is a list of cemeteries and who is buried where. This section also has hundreds and hundreds of names in it, I guess this section would be great if you are a movie buff and want to visit famous peoples graves!

      The book was published in 2001, and I do have to point out that most of the stars in the book are from the early days of film and tv and I certainly didn't know many people included in the book and not many recent stars are mentioned. However I did find a good read and it was interesting to find out about stars I hadn't heard of before. The book does have a good range of stars though, including Judy Garland, Marilyn Monroe, Grace Kelly, Brandon Lee, Sharon Tate, Clark Gable and lots, lots more!

      I can't remember how much I paid for the book when I bought it since it was so long ago. The rrp on the back of the book is $16.99, but it is on Amazon for £6.07 which I think is quite reasonable for the book as there is a lot of interesting information on it, and I have gone back and read some of the sections again.

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        07.04.2010 12:47
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        A good, colourful gardening book to point you in the right direction

        I recently moved flats into the top floor of a high-rise block. Still no house with a garden.. but we do now have our own rather sizeable roof terrace. I decided that I really want to plant a small garden up there and grow some vegetables, and I found this book on Amazon called 'Crops in Pots' to help me along on my mission!

        The book is a lovely lime green colour and is a hardback book with some picture of fruit and veg in pots on it. It also states that the book has "50 great container projects using vegetables, fruit and herbs"

        The book is split into sections. The first section is called "Getting Started" and gives advice on containers, different soils, watering, feeding, general care, pests and diseases and lots more useful information! I found this particular section very helpful as I am very much a gardening novice and it was good to have all the information I needed in set out neatly in one place.

        The book is then split up further into sections. The next sections are called 'Starters', 'Main Courses' and 'Desserts'.. quite strange names for the sections, I thought! This is because the different 'container projects' mostly have an array of vegetables in one pot to be used for a particular meal. For example in the Starters section there is a container project called "Summer Cocktail", which is a combination of borage, salad burnet and strawberry plants. In "Main Courses" there are projects such as "Pasta and Pizza Pot" and "Once Upon A Time", a combination of runner beans and aubergines. There is a good selection of fruit and vegetables, and even edible (and non-edible) flowers used in the container projects.

        Each container project took up two pages in the book. On one page was a full page picture of what the container will look like in full bloom, and on the other page is the instructions. There is a little key at the top of each page letting you know how much sun the plants need, if they are frost hardy and how much watering they will need. Then there is a list of 'ingredients' needed, and this includes everything including what kind of pot to use, what kind of soil and which seeds are required. Then there is a list of instructions, and on most of the projects there were just three or four main points. One of the things that they don't put on the page, which I think would have been very helpful, was which months to plant the seeds, and when they can be harvested. If you're growing plants inside I guess that doesn't matter too much, but if you are putting them outside then it definitely does. I know the information can be found on the individual seed packets but I do think it would be helpful for planning. A good little thing that they have included on each project page is a recipe where you can use what you grown, such as Thai-dressed tofu rolls from the starters section, Chard and chickpea tortilla from the main courses section and Lemon posset with frosted grapes from the desserts section.

        At the back of the book there is a little sections about "What to Grow", which gives a better description of the individual plants, herbs, flowers and fruit you can grow. This was a great help for some extra information which isn't included on the project pages, such as particular pests you may get with the plant and tips about sowing and harvesting your crops.

        I really enjoyed the book, although what I really wanted in the book was for it to be a little more 'plain'. Instead of having four different kinds of vegetable to be grown together in a pot, I wanted it to have a little more information on growing individual fruit and vegetables. That is not to say I am not impressed with the book, I think its clever the way that they have grouped specific plants together that you may use in the same meal, but at the same time I think a lot of the grouping was used for decorative purposes to look pretty, and I was looking for something a little more practical. Though potting things in the same container would save on space, and it would be easier to care for the plants as the plants which need similar care are obviously planted together.

        It says on the back of the book that "even if you only have a tiny patio, balcony or just a windowsill you can grow a bountiful crop of fruit and vegetable", and although it says this, it didn't offer any advice for growing your plants completely indoors (such as in a windowsill) and it didn't have any pictures of plants being grown indoors, all of the pictures were of plants outside. I think it would have been helpful for people who don't have a balcony or terrace to see how to place their plants inside, and what it may look like. It also doesn't mention specifically how to grow your crops indoors, or any tips on how to grow indoors which I think would have been good.

        I think this book was really handy for the information at the start about different container and soils to use. I have planted some seeds already, and my little seedlings are getting bigger every day. I have grouped some of my vegetable together in pots, though there some container projects I am unlikely to use, such as the ones with flowers in them. But for information and tips, I find this book really handy. I just wish they had more of a selection of pictures of crops in different places such as inside, as the book claims that it is possible to grow a crop on your windowsill.

        If you're looking for some interesting gardening projects and only have a small patio, balcony or terrace, I recommend this book.

        The rrp of the book is £14.99 but it is for sale on Amazon for £9.71.

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          17.03.2010 12:59
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          A fun, festive tart burner

          Since everyone has seemed to have noticed that I have a bit of a Yankee Candle obsession at the moment, my friend bought me a 'Happy Holiday Trees' Yankee Candle tart burner.

          The tart burner is white with lots of pictures of trees round the outside of it. The first thing that I really liked about the tart burner is that the trees are really cool designs, some of them are stripy, have different coloured dots, different patterns, and are different sizes. There are a total of 15 trees painted on it all together, and all of them are different.

          The burner is around 13cm tall and is cylindrical with a section at the top which is shaped almost like a little bowl where you put the tarts. There is a hole in the body of the tart burner where you place a tea light so that it starts to heat up the burner, there is a little dip in the bottom that the tea light sits in, which is quite handy so you know that you have placed the tea light in exactly the right place!

          To use the tart burner you simply pop a wax tart (or special burner oil) in the top section of the burner, and light a tea light and pop it in the bottom section. Easy as that! The tart burner warms up quite quickly, and it does get quite warm just under the top section so I don't recommend touching or trying to move the tart burner while its on. Not only do you run the risk of burning your fingers, but also of spilling the oil or wax which can be quite hard to clean off things.

          Wax tarts and burning oil are very easy to get a hold of. Yankee Candle recommends that you use Yankee Candle wax tarts and tea lights in the tart burner, but they would say that! You can use any make of wax tarts, oil or tea lights. The Yankee Candle wax tarts cost around £1, and these are what I currently use as they have a great range of scents and last for ages.

          There are four small foam pads on the bottom of the burner, which I think is a really good idea as when the tea light starts burning down it can get quite warm so the foam pads stops the burner from any potential burning to a table.

          I'm not sure where my friend bought the tart burner, but I have seen one online for £4.75 reduced from £5.49 from Yankeedoodle.co.uk which seems like a great price for it as I love the design and it works really well. I know its past Christmas but I'm still using it, and will probably use it all throughout the year since I like it so much!

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            12.03.2010 20:56
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            A wonderful revision book which has helped me lots!

            I never did higher maths when I was at school, and I am kicking myself now for not doing it! I want to apply for a new course at uni, but without having a higher maths qualification they won't accept me. So, I am currently sitting my higher maths through open learning. I find this quite hard, not sitting in a class room with a teacher working through the course and explaining things face to face is quite difficult so any revision aids come in very useful. This is the reason I bought this "Revise for Higher Mathematics" book.

            The book is split into three main sections; unit 1, unit 2 and unit 3. It is useful that it is split into these three different sections, as each section covers the material which you will be tested on in each of the three National Assessment Bank tests (NABs) that you have to take (and pass!) in order to sit the final exam. So you can study unit 1 for NAB 1, unit 2 for NAB 2 etc. This means you don't have to look through the book to find which parts you have to practice as it is all neatly set out for you! In each unit there is 4 different topics to revise and each of these topics are covered in separate chapters.

            Each chapter starts with the 'Key points to remember' for the topic, these are handy hints such as formulas you need to remember and also useful little pieces of information. I have found this really helpful to break down the information I am trying to learn for each topic. Each chapter then gives worked examples of questions that are covered in the topic. This is one of the most helpful parts of the book, with not having a teacher to explain things to me it really helps to see questions broken down step by step and explained. There are also revision questions for each chapter so you can test yourself to make sure that you understand the topic, and the answers are at the back of the book so you can check if you're right or not! If you have got any of the questions wrong, it recommends the chapters you should go back and revise in the main maths textbook used for the higher maths course 'Heinemann Higher Mathematics'.

            At the end of the unit 3 section, there are some practice NAB tests for each unit. I have found these invaluable for revision. All of the NAB tests that you have to sit tend to have the same kind of questions in them, so the practice NABs have allowed me to see what kind of questions I will be asked, and which parts of the topics I need to brush up on. The NABs also have the answers at the back of the book.

            I have found this book wonderful. I am sure it is one of the reasons I am doing so well on my course, and the reason I have passed my NAB assessments. I bought my copy on Amazon for £7.44, and I would consider it a valuable aid in revising for Higher Maths, especially with the key points to remember listed for each outcome, and also the practice NAB papers at the back of the book with answers. It has made learning all the outcomes so much easier, especially since I don't really have a teacher to explain things to me. I know I will be using it a lot in the run up to the final exam!

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              27.02.2010 15:07
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              A great lip balm (and more) which I got on offer

              When I was in Superdrug last week I saw some lip balm on offer for 73p. I was looking for some lip balm as my lips have been getting quite dry and sore with all this cold weather! I hadn't heard of the lip balm before but I was quite intrigued by its packaging which stated it was lip balm (and more), and at 73p if I didn't like it I wasn't losing out on much.

              The lip balm is from a company called Balm Balm, and comes in a little green box. The lip balm is 100% organic and 100% natural which ticks all the right boxes with me! It is also fragrance free and all ingredients are approved by the Soil Association. The green box it comes in is recyclable and the card is sourced from sustainable forests. Before I had even tried the balm I loved all of the wonderful things the packaging was telling me!

              The lip balm comes in a white plastic screw top little pot. On the top of the jar it has the company name in green with a little bit of information about the lip balm, and the company website. The lip balm is multi purpose and on the box is advertised as lip balm, face balm, hand balm and foot balm.

              The actual lip balm is white and is hard to the touch, but gets a little softer when you rub your finger on it. It makes my lips really soft and I am impressed how long it lasts for as I don't have to reapply it very often during the day. It really moisturises the dry parts of my lips without making them feel greasy, and a little bit goes a long way. I only need to wiggle my finger once in the pot for my top lip, and once for the bottom lip.

              I like the fact that the balm is multi-purpose. My heels are getting quite dry at the moment since I'm doing quite a lot of walking, and I applied it to my heels. Once again it was really good at mosturising the day parts, but since my heels are a lot larger than my lips I had to use quite a lot of the balm. This just wouldn't work out very cost effective as the pot is only 7ml big!

              I have been on the website to check out the price of the lip balm when it is not on offer, and it costs £2.99 so I got a bargain at 73p! I would recommend this lip balm. I like the fact that it is organic and natural, I do tend to get fragranced lip balm as I quite like fruity flavours but this was still nice being fragrance free (though I did see on the website that it comes in rose geranium and tea tree too) and I liked that is was multi-purpose, though I am going to use it mainly on my lips else it will get used up too quickly.

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                16.02.2010 14:42
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                A nice bath ballistic

                I got given a Lush bath ballistic for Christmas and I have finally gotten round to using it! The bath ballistic I was given was one that was brought out for Christmastime, and it is called the Lush Pud. It looks like a little round Christmas Pudding! It is light brown in colour and has a white patch at the top which looks like icing, with some holly leaves and a red berry on top of that. I really like the design of it, I think its really fun.

                The bath ballistic smells quite sweet and it does actually smell really pudding-y (quite a hard smell to describe!) It smells slightly spicy and a little fruity. I like the smell, though it is rather strong. I had to keep mine wrapped in two plastic bags to save it from stinking up my bedroom!

                The Lush Pud has a chalky texture, though it does not crumble (as long as you don't knock it around) and is a firm round shape.

                When I popped the bath ballistic into my bath, it started fizzing straight away and the smell of the Lush Pud really intensified. The smell was slightly too overpowering for me, as although I liked the pudding smell when it got stronger it did get a little too much. The smell did die down a bit after the initial fizzing stage and it became quite pleasant and relaxing.

                I was a little disappointed with the fizzing time of the Lush Pud, although this is only my second Lush bath ballistic the first one I tried fizzed for at least 5 minutes, and this one was over in about a minute and a half.

                The Lush Pud turned my bathwater a shade of greeny-brown and I noticed that the green holly leaves from the bath ballistic were lying on the bottom of the bath. They were hard to touch and at first I thought they were made from plastic, but they did melt eventually.

                This bath ballistic is smaller than the other standard sized bath ballistics from Lush, and probably about half the weight of the other ones too (which is probably why it fizzed so quickly!)

                As I wasn't the one who bought it, and since it was only available at Christmas I don't know the exact price of it and I can't find it on the Lush website, but I do remember seeing it in the Lush shop and I think it was around the £2 mark.

                I really liked the design of the Lush Pud, it is very cute. Although I was a little disappointed with how long it fizzed for, and the smell was a little too overpowering when it started fizzing, I did enjoy this bath ballistic. The smell became pleasant after the ballistic had stopped fizzing and I had a very
                relaxing bath.

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                12.02.2010 21:50
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                a good value wax tart that smells lovely!

                I bought my first lot of Yankee Candle goodies a little while ago, and one of the things I purchased was a Yankee Candle Mango Peach Salsa wax tart.
                The wax tart is orange in colour and has a sticker with a picture of some mangoes and peaches on the front of it. The tart is plastic wrapped so no stray wax crumbles escape and make a mess! The tart is circular and is about 6cm across and almost 2cm thick.

                You can definitely smell the wax tart, even before you open the wrapping. You have to watch out while handling it and storing it as even when you touch it with the wrapper on your hands smell of the tart, and the smell transfers onto anything it is stored together with. The smell is really fruity and it really does smell of fresh mangoes and peaches. It is not a synthetic smell at all and I love it.

                The wax tart can be placed in any normal oil or tart burner. To use the tart, you simply take off the plastic wrapper and place it on the top part of the oil burner and light the tea light underneath. It doesn't take long for the tart to start melting and the smell that comes from the wax is lovely and fruity, and it really does fill the whole house. I find that the smell lingers for hours in my flat even after I blow the candle out. When the wax tart melts the wax is very hot so be careful not to spill any or get any on your hands because you will definitely feel it.

                Once you start burning the tart and blow the candle out, the wax sets rock hard so you have to finish burning the tart before you put a new wax tart in your burner, and this takes a while! On the back of the tart it says that the tart will burn for 8 hours, but I have burned mine for around 6 hours already and I still have about half of it left, so they really do last for a long time.

                I bought the wax tart when I was in Birmingham visiting friends from a small independent candle shop for £1.05, but they are widely available online on Ebay and Amazon.

                I think the Yankee Candle wax tarts are really good value for money, my wax tart has been burning for hours and it still isn't finished yet, so I think that it £1.05 well spent! The smell is lovely and it doesn't smell synthetic, though it is very strong and might not be to everyone's taste.

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                  06.02.2010 14:19
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                  Not one for me

                  My Mum makes me an advent calendar every year, even though I'm 24 now, and she puts the best gifts into it! One of the things I got this year was a Montagne Jeunesse Sauna Masque (a fancy name for a face mask!)

                  The mask comes in a 15g sachet. The sachet is purple and pink with a picture of a womans face on the front wearing a red face mask on with leaves over her eyes (which strangely is not the same colour as the face mask inside the sachet!)

                  The mask is for normal, oily and t-zone skin and is also deep pore cleansing. I would say my skin fits into the 'normal' category, so it was a good choice by my mum.

                  The face mask is called a sauna masque because it has self heating therapy clay in it, so as soon as you put it on your face it starts to heat up.

                  There is a small tear in the sachet which means that you can easily rip it open without having to use scissors (or anything else sharp lying around in the bathroom!) The face mask is light pink, gooey and quite runny which gets quite messy when applying it. As soon as you put it one your face you can feel it heating up. It doesn't get very hot, but you can definitely feel the warm sensation and I have to say I'm not too keen on it. I prefer the standard facemasks that don't warm up, however the facemask does cool down after a couple of minutes. The facemask doesn't dry on your face but stays runny, so careful touching your face else you will get sticky fingers! The facemask doesn't really smell of anything, but I do think the colour is quite pretty.

                  The sachet recommends that you leave the face mask on for 5 minutes, and then rinse it off and pat your skin dry. When I put my face mask on and then looked in the mirror after 5 minutes, I had streaks of the face mask running down my face and a couple of drips about to fall off my chin, so I recommend only putting a light cover of this on your face since its so runny it might drip off.

                  My skin felt and looked soft after I had washed the face mask off. The face mask hadn't dried my skin out and my skin did feel really clean. The problem I had with it was that I didn't like the fact that it heated up, and it was way too runny and gooey for my liking so I don't think I will be getting this particular face mask again.

                  You get quite a lot of face mask in the sachet and this will definitely last you at least two applications, which is good but there is no way of sealing the sachet again other than trying to fold the top down.

                  It recommends on the sachet that you use this twice weekly, but I think it would be quite expensive and time consuming to use twice a week and I personally only use face masks once in a while for a nice treat.

                  I have seen this face mask in both Boots and Superdrug and they cost around £1 per sachet, which isn't bad considering you get around 2 applications per sachet, however this face mask just isn't for me.

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                  • Lush Supernova / Bath & Shower / 90 Readings / 89 Ratings
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                    16.11.2009 23:55
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                    A nice but flawed idea

                    I have been reading so many reviews and good things about Lush I thought I better try some of their products and see what all the fuss was about. I decided to buy a 'Supernova' bath ballistic to start with. The bath ballistic cost me £2.86, and I was drawn to it as it was the most colourful one in the shop!

                    The bath ballistic is quite heavy and weighs around 200g. It is about the size of a tennis ball and is bright pink! It has little bits of coloured confetti in it, so there are bits of blue, red, yellow, orange, purple and green colour in there too which makes it look very exciting! There is a stamp imprint on the bottom of it with the lush logo on it.

                    The ballistic is quite smelly, a nice smell but maybe slightly too strong for my liking. It smells quite citrusy like oranges and limes mixed together. The ballistic feels quite powdery and chalky to touch, but it's not crumbly so it won't fall apart before you have used it.

                    When I put the ballistic in the bath it started fizzing straight away and created a sort of creamy lather on the water. The ballistic fizzed for a good 5 minutes (though it may well have been more - I find it quite hard to keep a track of the time whilst in the bath!) I was nicely surprised by this as I thought it would all be over quite quickly.

                    The lather didn't last very long but I was left with a pink coloured bath which looked very pretty. To top this off there were hundreds of bits of colourful confetti floating around in the water, it was almost like having a party in my bath! However I was dismayed to find out that the confetti was not bath confetti which melts in the bath but real confetti, and I wasn't looking forward to cleaning it up once I had finished my bath.

                    The smell that came from the bath ballistic was lovely, I felt it had mellowed slightly than what it had smelt like before I put it in the bath. The whole bathroom filled with the lovely citrus smell that was quite calming and relaxing and I soaked in the bath for a good hour with the smell just as strong.

                    One thing I found with the supernova bath ballistic is that it does make your skin feel quite slimy under the water so I had quickly rinse myself off in the shower after the bath. Also when I drained the bath all the confetti got stuck in the plug hole, and lets face it who wants to start cleaning the plug hole after theyve gotten out of a lovely relaxing bath?

                    Although I enjoyed this bath ballistic, I was a little put out by the confetti being real. I think it would be a lot better with bath confetti in it so it melted in the bath and you didn't have to clean the plug hole after the bath. £2.86 is also quite expensive if you have one in every bath you have, so it will definitely be a treat to have one in the future. I will probably get this bath ballistic again eventually, but I'm going to try the other ones first and see it theres one I like more.

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                      31.10.2009 17:28
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                      Well worth it if you are staying there for a few days

                      A few months ago I took my boyfriend on a birthday trip to Paris. Whilst browsing the internet for things to do while we were there, I came across a website advertising the Paris Pass.

                      With the Paris Pass, you pay a set amount of money which allows you access to lots of different attractions in Paris, with the potential of saving a lot of money. There are three options to choose from a 2 day, 4 day or 6 day pass. We were in Paris for 5 days, so I decided to get the 4 day pass at a cost of Euro124 each. It did seem like a lot of money, but I knew that I wanted to do lots while we were there, and we probably would have ended up paying more than that anyway.

                      You have to order the Paris Pass online (from parispass.com), it is not available to buy in Paris (which seemed very strange to me!) You can either get it sent to you, or you can pick it up once you get to Paris. We chose to pick it up, and we had to go to The Hard Rock Café with our printed email to exchange it for our passes.

                      The passes come in a little plastic wallet. In it you get: a 5 day pass for the metro (for travel between zones 1 - 2), a four day Paris Museum Pass, a four day Paris Pass and a Paris Pass guide detailing all the places you can get in for free, and also special offers and discounts that the Paris Pass offers.

                      The guide book is A5 size, so its actually a great size to carry around with you as it is able to fit into a pocket. The guide book is split up in to different sections; ideas for days out, galleries, museums, monuments, historic buildings, places of interest and special offers. On each page, next to the attractions it shows a little map and address of where the attraction is, the nearest tube and bus stations, opening times, telephone number and website address. This was really handy, as otherwise I don't think we would have been able to find a lot of the attractions by ourselves.

                      There was such a great range of attractions available to see, they ranged from very popular attractions such as The Louvre, The Dali Museum, Arc De Triomphe and Notre Dame, to ones that were a little bit more obscure, such as the Sewer Museum. I really liked the fact that the Paris Pass allowed us to visit a lot of places where we otherwise wouldn't have thought of visiting.

                      One thing I wish I had known before is that if you are under 26 and from and EU country, you can get into a lot of Paris Museums for free. As we went to a lot of these museums, I'm not actually sure if I saved much, or any money buying the Paris Pass. We did do a lot of things that weren't available for free though, such as wine tasting and a river cruise.

                      On top of the access to attractions, there are special offers for people with the Paris Pass, such as a free welcome drink at selected restaurants, 15% discount off segway tours, and free dessert at The Hard Rock Café, as well as a few others.

                      The Paris Pass is credit card sized and has a little chip on it that they put in to a machine when you go into an attraction, meaning that you can only visit each attraction once. But there is so much to do you don't really have time to visit things more than once!

                      I think the Paris Pass is a great idea. I really liked the fact that you got everything you needed in the pack, including a metro card which allowed you free access to travel all over Paris. The only problem I had was that there was so much stuff to do I wanted to do it all, and felt like I was rushing through some of the attractions to get on to the next one! There was also the little fact that I could have got in to a lot of the museums for free, but all in all I didn't mind too much.

                      The Paris Pass is also available at a discounted price for children and teens, but we only bought the adult passes.

                      I would highly recommend the Paris Pass. We got to see so many wonderful attractions and went on some wonderful tours. We got to go to attractions I never even knew existed, and that I wouldn't have known about otherwise. The Paris Pass gives you access to over 60 attractions and there really is something for everyone, be you child, teen or adult!

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                        24.10.2009 21:18
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                        Slightly amusing but I won't be watching it again!

                        I borrowed this dvd from a friend. I had heard a little bit about it before I watched it, and I was curious about seeing Paris Hilton singing and acting as a plastic surgery addict. The film is basically a modern day musical.

                        The film is set in 2056 when there is an organ failure epidemic, and millions of people are going to die if they can't get any help! Then a saviour emerges, a wealthy man named Rotti who creates a company named GeneCo, who is willing to give organ transplants which he makes it affordable to the masses by allowing people to pay in instalments. The transplants seem to become quite a fashion statement and you can get transplants for pretty much anything; eyes, noses, whole faces, hearts, lungs etc. This is all good and well until organ repossession is made legal.. which means that if you don't keep up with your payments, the Repo Man will come and repossess your organs!

                        The film is based around two families, Rottis family (Rotti, his two sons and a daughter) who own GeneCo, and a small family consisting of a doctor called Nathan and his daughter Shilo. This is where the plot gets slightly complicated and a little hard to explain! Nathan's late wife, Marni, used to be together with Rotti but she left Rotti for Nathan. Marni became gravely ill and Nathan, being a doctor, tried to create an antidote to save his pregnant wife. Unfortunately she died from taking the antidote but the baby survived. Rotti blackmails Nathan, as he knows the truth about him killing his wife, and makes him sign a contract to work for him. Unbeknown to his daughter, Nathan works as the greatly feared Repo Man.

                        It is revealed at the start of the film that Rotti has a terminal illness and doesn't deem his own children fit to inherit the profitable GeneCo company. He turns his sights to Shilo as she seems like a good candidate, but first Shilo has to prove herself to Rotti. Can she do what he tells her to so she can inherit the company, and will she ever find out the truth about her father.. you'll have to watch it to find out.

                        The film has plenty of songs throughout. Unfortunately I thought they were all pretty bad! I don't think any of the cast are particularly good singers and none of the songs were very catchy. The bad singing made me cringe and it reminded me a little bit of the Buffy The Vampire Slayer musical episode.

                        The film is quite black and gloomy throughout, and there is not much colour. It all looks quite gothic and Tim Burton-esque. The film has an 18 certificate, which I think is quite a high rating for it. There is quite a lot of blood in the film, but it is gory in a comical way and not intended to be scary.

                        The film is 98 minutes long, and to be honest it didn't really hold my attention so I was getting a little bored by the end of it. I didn't think overly much of the storyline and the songs made it a little unbearable to watch as they were so cheesy.

                        There are also some extras on the dvd though these aren't too much to talk about, they consist of:

                        * An audio commentary with the director and three of the actors
                        * An audio commentary with the director, co-creators and music producer
                        * Deleted scenes -five minutes of deleted scenes (four scenes in total) which include some songs which weren't included in the final film.
                        * Deleted scenes with commentary from the director and Paris Hilton - the same deleted scenes as before, just with a commentary over the top
                        * Featurettes - From Stage To Screen, Assassin: A Repo Man On The Edge, Zydrate Anatomy Amber Sweet: Addicted To The Knife, Chase The Morning Blind Mag: The Voice Of Geneco
                        * Sing along tracks - Four sing a long songs from the film with the words going along the bottom of the screen a little bit like karaoke. You can't choose which song you want to play, they play one after the other automatically from the start.

                        The dvd is available from Amazon for £5.98, but it was a film I think I'd only watch once so I won't be buying a copy of it for myself!

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                          17.10.2009 15:37
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                          Handy, enviromentally friendly batteries

                          I bought my sister some of these batteries a couple of years ago for Christmas as she was going travelling, and since I am trying to be a bit more environmentally friendly, I decided to buy some for myself too!

                          USBCells are just like rechargeable batteries, though the great thing about them is that to charge them all you have to do is plug them into a USB port and they will start charge.

                          You get two USBCells per pack and they are only available in size AA. The batteries look like normal batteries, the very top of them is green and the body of the battery is brown with 'USBCell' written across it. The green top of the battery lifts off to reveal a USB plug. The top of the battery is connected by a strong piece of elasticated plastic, so there is no worry about losing the top whilst charging the batteries.

                          You don't have to install any software onto your computer to work these, all you have to do is plug them in and they start charging straight away. They are very easy to use.

                          You can tell that the battery is charging as a solid green light comes on on the battery, when the battery is 90% charged the light slowly flashes, and when it is completely charged it goes out. The batteries take around 5 hours to fully charge.

                          Another great thing about the USBCells is that you don't have to use a USB port to charge them up, you can also use a normal battery charger. I have only used a USB port, but on the packet it says that the batteries take around 7 hours to charge in a normal charger.

                          I think these batteries are wonderful! They really are a wonderful idea, not only as they are practical for people going on holiday or travelling, but also for just using around the home. They charge up fairly quickly, are environmentally friendly and they are just as powerful and last as long as other batteries I have used. I have recharged my batteries several times now and they are still as powerful as before, and according to the packet they can be re-used hundreds of times so you will more than make your money back with them.

                          You should shop around for the best price for these. I was a little silly and didn't, and I ended up paying £12.99 for them on Firebox.com, but Amazon have them for as little as £7.99. I love my USBCells, and am thinking about purchasing some more as I have so many gadgets that use batteries.

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                            07.10.2009 16:55
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                            A good conditioner that made my hair look nice!

                            I bought this Tigi Oatmeal and Honey Conditioner along with the matching shampoo several months ago. I bought the 750ml size, but it is also available in a 250ml bottle. The conditioner is specifically for damaged hair.. which is unfortunately the category my hair falls into thanks to dying my hair and my hair straighteners!

                            I really like the design of the bottle, it is aquamarine in colour and has a large 'C' in the middle of it standing for 'Catwalk'. The larger sized bottle (750ml) has a pump on the top of it, which is actually really handy as you can just pump out the shampoo instead of having to turn the bottle upside down and squeezing it. The smaller sized bottle comes with a pull top lid. If you don't like the pump top, or you want to take it off for some reason, it just screws off.

                            The first thing I noticed when I used this shampoo was the smell. I know it says oatmeal and honey on the packaging, but I actually really think it smells of toffee. It is quite a nice smell, but a little too sickly sweet and strong for me. It says on the bottle that the smell 'invigorates your mind, body and soul', but I'm not too sure about that myself!

                            The conditioner is to be applied to wet hair after shampooing. The conditioner is white and quite thick, and you only need the tiniest little squirt as a little goes a long way. My hair is just below my shoulders and I use one squirt and that does my entire hair. Make sure you rinse the conditioner out of your hair well else it will end up looking quite greasy. I really like the results I get from using this conditioner, my hair feels really soft and shiny, and my dry ends are a lot less dry which is what I wanted out of the conditioner. The smell still lingers, but only slightly which is a good thing as the sickly, strong toffee smell was a little too much for me to start with.

                            The conditioner is to be used within 12 months of being opened, and although the bottle is really big I think I'm just about going to do it! If I buy this again with the shampoo, I will make sure I buy the smaller bottle of conditioner since I finished the shampoo months ago, and since you only have to use a little of the conditioner compared to the shampoo, I still have about a fifth of a bottle of conditioner left.

                            As I have used up the matching shampoo I have been using the conditioner along with other brands of shampoo, and the conditioner still works just as well.

                            I bought the bottle in a twin pack along with the shampoo for around £18, and I saw the conditioner on its own on Amazon today for £9.60 for the 750ml size and £8.55 for the 250ml bottle (so the bigger size definitely works out cheaper!) The Tigi brand is not available to buy in shops but you can buy them from hair salons or the internet. Though I would say the internet is your best bet since it's a lot cheaper!

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                            • The Birth Of A Nation (DVD) / DVD / 61 Readings / 61 Ratings
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                              27.09.2009 11:50
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                              An interesting old film!

                              The Birth of a Nation is a black and white silent film from 1915. It's not a film I had heard of before, and the reason I watched it was because it was on the film list for a course I am taking at university.

                              The film is based on a novel by Thomas Dixon called 'The Clansmen'. I had read up a little bit about the film before I started watching it so I wasn't as surprised as I might have been about the content. The film was (and still is) controversial for promoting white supremacy, and I thought most of it was quite racist!

                              The film was regarded as a very important film in its day as it used many new filming techniques which hadn't been seen before. This is one of the main reasons that it was chosen as part of my course. I found the film interesting as I had never seen anything like it before, although I understand why it is seen as controversial and I don't agree with the views in the film, but I can see why it was important in the history of film making.

                              The film is silent but has orchestral music playing throughout. There are also handy screens before each scene telling you what is happening, which is good otherwise it would get very confusing as it is quite a complex film.

                              The film is based around two families, the Camerons and the Stonemans. One family is from the South, the other from the North. The sons from both sets of families were great friends, and then the civil war broke out between the North and South and the families were made to fight against each other. After the North wins the war, and after President Lincoln is assassinated, the Stonemans move to the South. Mr Stoneman is now the highest power as Lincoln is dead, and he moves to try to give power to the slaves of the South and to see his policies are being carried out.

                              The eldest Cameron son is not happy with this. The newly freed slaves now have the right to vote, and also are allowed to intermarry. He feels like they are taking over the South. One of them terrorises his youngest sister and she jumps to her death to get away from him. After this Ben Cameron decides that something needs to be done and he can't just stand by let the South be overtaken by the black people. He then comes up with an idea about disguising himself and trying to scare the slaves and put them back in their place, where he thinks they belong. He gathers some friends together and they start terrorising all the black people of the South, dressed in their white disguises. He has started a group called the Ku Klux Klan. Will he manage in campaign? You'll have to watch the film to find out what happens.. but I think a lot of people know the history of the KKK already.

                              The film is made up of two parts with an break in between. This is clearly shown in the film when a big black screen pops up saying 'Second Part - Reconstruction'. The film is quite long at just over 3 hours so I took a break whilst watching it, as 3 hours of silent film is quite a lot to take in one sitting!

                              I was quite shocked with how heroic the film made the Ku Klux Klan out to be, it really demonised black people and made it seem like they were all criminals and ruffians who were trying to take over America. The film seems completely against equality and makes it clear that white people should rule over everything. Although I had read about the film before seeing it and knew a bit about the storyline, I was still shocked to see how the film idolised the KKK, they are seen as the heroes of the whole state.

                              I am glad I watched the film, it is quite interesting to see a film from so long ago and see the viewpoint of the director, although I disagree with what he is trying to promote. It is worth watching as it is such an important film in film history, even if it is so controversial.

                              The film is available to buy from Amazon for £14.48.

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                              • Disaster Movie (DVD) / DVD / 85 Readings / 82 Ratings
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                                21.09.2009 16:03
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                                A forgettable and not very funny film!

                                I had heard a little bit about this film before I saw it. Mostly that it was a parody of lots of different film, and also that it was not very good.. so I didn't have very high expectations when I started watching it!

                                The film is about a group of young friends in their twenties. The films main plot is a little bit like the one of Cloverfield; the friends are at a party when all of a sudden buildings start collapsing, there are hurricanes and earthquakes and they have to try to keep safe. The only thing to stop all the havoc is to replace a golden skull back onto its stand in a museum.

                                Throughout the film they meet pretty much every character from all the big films which were out in 2007/8, namely the princess from Enachanted, Hellboy, Batman, Indiana Jones, Hitcock, Juno, all of High School Musical, Amy Winehouse.. and lots, lots more.

                                The friends find the skull after a series of 'hilarious' incidences, but do they manage to get it back to its exhibit and save the world? Well I could spoil it but I'm not going to! (though I have to say it's not *that* exciting)

                                In a way the film is quite tiring, it is non-stop one new character and silly event happening after another right from the very beginning until the end, and to be honest I didn't find many of them that funny. Some of the film is also quite disgusting, especially when a pregnant Juno's waters breaks and squirt all over people, and making Carrie Bradshaw eat her baby's placenta.

                                I didn't recognise any of the actors in the film, apart from Carmen Elektra who had a minor role at the beginning and a few of the comedians from MadTV. Most of the actors played several characters in the film, and the resemblance between the actors and the characters they were playing was actually quite good in a comic sort of way!

                                The film is 88 minutes long, which I thought was an appropriate length so that it didn't drag on for too long, though I did get quite bored while watching it as I didn't think it was very funny. The film was released in 2008 and it did a good job of including all of the recent films that were released at around the same time, I was actually quite impressed!

                                I know the film was called 'Disaster Movie' as it's meant to be a movie where everything goes wrong.. but I think it is quite an appropriate name for it as it is a bit disastrous because it's so bad!

                                It is definitely the kind of film you only watch once, if you do want to buy it though it is available for £4.98 on Amazon, but I would recommend not spending money on it and borrowing it instead.

                                *this review is for the film only*

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