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On the never-ending quest to find a great tasting yogurt which is full of flavour without affecting my waist (well too much) I found this little gem by Dr. Oetker. Quite frankly it does what it says on the tin, as it is 'light and tasty' and for me most importantly it leaves me and my hunger satisfied.
It comes in 450ge pots which I should say isn't so great as we all know and from various studies that have been conducted, the more food that is readily available the more the average person tends to eat. Though I do believe this can be avoided with a little training which in my case I love because I like to feel I can be disciplined. The pot is an inviting shade of pink with strawberry like decoration around the top of the pot.
Along with the nutritional information and ingredients you get serving suggestions and all the spiel about how great the live cultures are for you and your body. The live bio cultures contained in the yogurt are Lactobacillus Acidophilus and Bifidobacterium Longum. Another live culture contained is Thermophilus. I know little to nothing about the nutritional or health benefits of the previous but like the thought i'm doing my body some good. It is also gluten free, suitable for vegetarians and contains no artificial flavourings, colours or preservatives. The pot and lid are both fully recyclable.
It is thick and creamy which is a must for me with any yogurt product. It is a vibrant shade of pink much like the colour of the pot itself which makes it look all the more appetising. The consistency is a lot more stable than other fat free yogurts I've tried and measures up to any full fat yogurt in the consistency stakes. Only containing 7.7% strawberries the yogurt doesn't have a lot of bits and chunks which is great for me because I never really made the transition and still pick out the bits as I did when I was about 10. As previously stated I find that after about a third of the pot my hunger has been satisfied and at 80kcals per 150g serving that is great for and weight watchers out there!
Per 150g serving %GDA (based on 2000kcals)
Energy 340kJ/80kcal 4%
Protein 7.2g 14%
Carbohydrate 11.9g 4%
Of which sugars 11.2g 12%
Fat 0.2g <1%
Of which sugars 0.1g 1%
Fibre 0.3g 1%
Sodium 0.11g 5%
Every now and again I do like to change up my make-up and try new things out. I find its way too easy to find yes a great product but then become almost addicted to it or to just buy the same item out of habit. Or to just save the hassle of trawling through all the various brand names as well as the million of different types of the same thing they sell! I've got nothing against anyone who sticks to a great product they've found (this does save a LOT of hassle) but I can't help but feel that if I did this I might be greatly missing out. I frequently hear great things about beauty products I've disregarded as useless and gimmicky so now I endeavour to give new so-called 'amazing' products at least one go in an attempt not to miss out on a potential new must have item. Rimmel Sexy Curves mascara is a product I should say I shouldn't have worried about missing out on... at all.
I'd seen that ad with Sophie Ellis-Bextor plugging this and as soon as I saw the ridiculous applicator brush I immediately disregarded it as merely a gimmicky product. The product promises that the 'New triple plump brush' is 'for fuller curvier lashes' and will give you 70% more' curl'. I've heard all this product spiel before and all the 'lashes that reach for the sky' stuff is like water of a ducks back.
I must say that the packaging is really quite attractive and probably one of the very few high points of this product. The sleek, cool design and rich deep purple just makes it look so sophisticated, as well as the understated white italics that the product information is written on. The white and purple look great together and it is a great addition to any make up bag in the aesthetic stakes. Every tube gives you 0.27 fl oz of the stuff or if you prefer 8ml and will last 12months.
Ok so this is where things really do start to go down hill and I must talk about this ridiculous applicator brush! It was marketed as the new 'innovative' wand that is supposedly responsible for the extra curl your lashes get. The 'wand' looks like a peanut on a stick with lots of random spikes sticking out of it! It doesn't actually even make sense to me; the spikes are not evenly distributed as the wand has effectively 3 bumps of spikes. It occurs to me that in the areas where there isn't a bump you would have less mascara on your lashes and I don't really know how the idea of this applicator got out of the boardroom!
I despise this brush seriously, first of all the spikes are not as soft as you like. So when they come into contact with any part of my eyelid it feels really quite uncomfortable. You do get the mascara onto your lashes if you move the applicator up and down them to make up for the application 'gaps'. One plus I can think of with this brush is that due to its form you don't get too much mascara on the brush.
I know so far I haven't given the mascara a glowing review but you may be surprised to discover that as mascara itself I don't think it is too bad. My main gripe is with the applicator as it is so important to apply your make-up effectively and comfortably but once the mascara is on it works quite well. It dries on your lashes relatively quickly which means less chance of smudging and it does not feel too heavy or cakey. I don't know about 70% more curl but it does the job of any decent mascara, blackens your lashes which make them look that bit fuller and thicker. It's a good one for wearing for a long time without flaking so id say if it didn't promise the world, didn't have the most ridiculous applicator and it wasn't so dear (boots £7.82) or say in a value range I would buy it happily.
Like a lot of people I remember the lovely soft wheat 'honey goodness' from my childhood when I must admit I did quite look forward to breakfast, as most of the time I would 'bully' my parents into planting the most chocolate covered, sugar coated cereal in front of me most mornings. With the premise that I would be a 'good' girl as long as I had my 'fix' so to say. Coco Pops, Nesquik and Corn Pops were amongst my top 10 with Sugar Puffs being right up there, in the top 3 at least!
I know its not just me and that a lot of these breakfast cereals have been dramatically changed over the years, to be ,'healthier' I believe they say in most cases but I cant help but feel that this has no doubt ruined most of these cereals as they just do not taste the same *tear*. These days I'm much more health conscious and stick to my Special K if I want cereal but now and again ill pick up a purely indulgent cereal like Sugar Puffs. I do quite regret it now but maybe not for the reasons you think...
The Sugar Puffs box has not much changed over the years, with the beloved honey monster on the front looking ecstatic with a bowl of those sugar coated puffs in a bowl in front of him. The box is largely blue with a cartoonish honeycomb being the backdrop to the words 'Sugar Puffs' which is written in bubbly red writing (oh and lets not forget the bee next to the title who if you look closely bares a striking resemblance to the honey monster himself!).
On the sides of the box you'll find all the relevant nutritional information with your GDA's etc and their 'quality promise' and contact details for the company. With the all important best before usually being on the top of the box. On the back you'll find fun little games and puzzles for your little ones to try out (e.g. word search, fun facts, health tips) or just for you to see if you still got it! I always loved the fun things to do on the back was the highlight of my morning... good times.
Now for the Puffs
As the name might suggest the puffs are simply full of sugar in fact you get about 10.6grams of the stuff in a 30g serving! They are natural wheat puff 'glazed in honey and brown sugar, so I wouldn't say everyday for you or the kids. If you hold one in-between your finger and thumb you find it a hard job to try and flatten, they are really quite hard on their own despite turning to mush in milk! This is my main gripe with the puffs; I remember them being so good in milk but now I just find after 30 seconds they turn to mush, well way to soft for me. They used to last long enough for the honey glazing to kind of dissolve into the milk whilst retaining a little crunch but if you tried to do that now (wait a little for honeyish milk) I think you'd probably end up with porridge.
The puffs still taste quite nice with the honey not being overpowering but just sweet enough and they are quite alright without milk as a snack. Opening a box is lovely as well, sweet and fragrant, the smell alone makes you want a bowl. It may just be my personal experience with the stuff but I tried to have a bowl 3 times and each time the puffs turned to mush! I am now left with a 50% extra free box that I haven't even made a dent in.
Per 30g serving
Calories - 114
Protein - 1.6g
Carbohydrate - 25.7g
(Of which sugars) - 10.6g
Fat - 0.5g
(Of which saturates) - 0.1g
Fibre - 1.1g
Salt - trace
No preservatives, fortified with vitamins and Iron, no artificial colours, a source of fibre, low in fat and no added salt.
You can get a box of this stuff for about £2 at any good supermarket.
I was given this tub as a gift not too long ago. It was one of those 'I don't know what to get you so ill get you some toiletries' gifts (admitted by the giver). Though not to reproach this methodology at all because although I do understand why some people loathe these 'last resort' 'sameish' gifts I love them! At heart I am a girly girl so there is not such a thing as having too many toiletries. My little face lit up (apparently) when I saw that my gift was from The Body Shop. I've always loved their products and have generally found the quality of their stuff to be of a very high standard. Before I start I think I should say that this is the only Body Shop product I have found to be a real let down to date.
I know a lot of people really love this product but I have to say i'm definitely not one of them, upon opening the beautiful looking tub I was met with the overpowering smell of... yogurt! Now i'm all for floral fruity smelling lotions and potions, in fact I positively look for them when traversing the aisles of various beauty products but I can honestly say smelling like raspberry yogurt is something I will never do. The feel of the body 'butter' left a lot to be desired, it feels like any run of the mill cheap body lotion squirted into a flat tub with that watered down look about it as well. With the type of cheap body lotion i'm talking about you have to rub it in quite a bit for it to be absorbed by your skin and you'll also have to reapply it 30 minutes later. So far so bad? Well don't worry things are looking up!
One thing I must say about the raspberry body butter is that the tub is just beautiful! It is a dazzling shade of purple and always looks divine wherever you place it. It always stands out amongst all other toiletries and makes your collection look that more luxurious. Accessorize! On the top it has some delicious looking pictures of raspberries and you've got to love the lovely circular tub. Ok so I lied, i'm sorry, things weren't really looking up I just had to try and give some sort of positive to having this product but the tub is gorgeous (that's what the 1 star is for by the way).
I was given this product as a gift so don't know exactly how much it cost at the time but a bit of digging around has uncovered that it is about £12 for the 200ml tub I have?! Which I would say is just not even close to being worth it! If you want a body butter that has that luxury feel, a great smell and that's highly moisturizing then this product is not for you. If you want a sub-standard body lotion and want to accessorize your toiletries, buy it? Surely do!
One of the few nestle chocs out there that match up to the Cadbury greats. KitKat has been around for ages. I can't actually remember the first time one of those lovely biscuity fingers passed my lips but when I saw a multipack at my local it all came rushing back and I had to pick it up.
The bar comes in a red and white packet that you can't miss. With the words KitKat written in bold bubble font surrounded by a circle of white almost as if the name of the bar had been stamped on. To the left of the name of the bar you have the brand name Nestle sitting majestically on its shoulder. Just a note but KitKat wasn't created by Nestle :O but by Rowntree and in the USA it is distributed by a completely different company Hershey's as there was some kind of battle over the licensing agreement! Well this was interesting for me to find out but back to the packaging. The packet is lined with foil which supposedly maintains the bar's 'foil freshness'. You will also find all the relevant nutritional information and the company's contact details.
The bar is made up of four 'fingers' joint by a thin strips of chocolate. The 'fingers' are made of crispy wafer coated in delicious creamy chocolate. The wafer is allegedly kept crisp and fresh by the foil lining though personally when the packaging was changed a few years ago now I didn't much notice the difference... not that the wafer isn't lovely and crispy but i'm just not sure to what extent the 'foil fresh' lining improved the product. Oh and I found that TV golf ad not only boring but also utterly ridiculous. There is a small 'snap' noise but if you breathe out heavily you might miss it! Engraved in the top of the chocolate on each 'finger' is a little slogan/message. More often than not it'll be the bars slogan 'have a break, have a Kit Kat' though sometimes they are different. Call me sad but as well as all the joy and excitement of chomping through the chocolate bar I do also get a little thrill whilst waiting to discover what little engraved message I have on my bar.
The chocolate tastes lovely, its creamy melts in your mouth and the wafer is coated in a sufficient amount of it that each mouthful is mostly chocolaty with the back-drop of crispy wafer, for me this is the perfect interplay between the two. The wafer also makes the bar immensely enjoyable on its own the wafer is sweet and crisp which you may be forgiven for thinking is no that case given the bland white colour. I recommend that the bar is 'best served chilled' (though this may just be my preference) as this is when the wafer is at its crispiest and the chocolate truly does melt in your mouth with slightly more intensity.
Per four 'finger' bar
Calories - 233 (12% GDA)
Protein - 2.5g (6% GDA)
Carbohydrate - 28.2g (12% GDA)
Fat - 12.2g (17% GDA)
A great snack when eaten in moderation. I would recommend it to anyone who wants a half biscuity half chocolaty snack and who likes a bit of excitement in their life (in the form of engraved slogans lol).
I've been using this wonderful piece of software for a while now and thought hey if anything deserves a review it's a 'revolutionary' piece of kit like this! Skype has been around for a while now so if you haven't heard of it or don't use it there is no excuse really but don't worry too much if you don't use it because i'm going to fill you all in right now then you can go off and download it =].
Skype has been around since 2003 but was really pushed to the forefront when eBay took over the company in 2005. The software allows you to make free calls using the internet to other Skype users or for a usually small fee to landlines and mobiles. It also incorporates an instant messaging service like that of MSN, yahoo etc for all of you IM lovers.
Skype has a multitude of features and there is always something to suit the needs of everyone. Most are free especially when it's skype-to-skype though if you are willing to pay a little more you never know you might find your Skype account overtakes your home phone!
Calling people who have Skype - this is what most people use it for so if you want to fully utilise this feature make sure to get everyone you want to call to sign up too!
Instant Messaging - much like other IM services you can choose to appear online, away, do not disturb, invisible and offline and talk to other people online as you please.
Video calling - this is a great for anyone who has friends or relatives abroad so doesn't get to see them that often. Given that you both have a good internet connection chatting and the picture are great and can really make you feel like you're missing out that little bit less. In my case seeing my new born cousin scream her lungs out live on video was miles better than any silent picture!
Calling people who don't have Skype - for a small charge you can call people in the UK or abroad. For landlines prices vary between 0.012 GBP (for UK calls and most other European countries) to GBP 0.153 for other destinations. Though your first call to landlines is usually free to let you test it out.
Skype voicemail - this service can be booked separately and is really useful if you have a lot of contacts on Skype
WHAT YOU NEED (apart from Skype)
Operating system- Skype is available for Windows, Linux and Mac OS X
Internet connection - I'd probably say (as with most things) a broadband connection is the best and will give you the best quality though I have used Skype effectively with a dial-up connection also.
Hardware - Microphone, speakers and webcam - the first two are a must for any call and for those of you who want to take part in video calling a good quality webcam is also essential.
Once you have downloaded Skype onto your computer guided by the very helpful wizard which makes it quick and easy all that is left is to register. It only takes a couple of minutes but you need to create a user account before you start. You input your real name as well as a Skype name of your choosing your email address, country, region and town and you're away!
Before you start - Skype will make you test your speakers and microphone and help you troubleshoot any problems with sound. If you experience any problems there is also extensive help on the website.
Adding Contacts - You can search for new contacts using their Skype name if known, their real name or their email address which is usually the easiest way. You can also import your contacts from your Microsoft Outlook or Yahoo email addresses. After you've found the person you want to add you ask to be added to their contacts list and Skype send them an invitation and then you wait until they reply (all very exciting!) If they accept you you'll be able to see them online and all you need to do is click on them to IM or make a call.
Credit - A must if you want to talk to anyone without a Skype account. It's very easy to do and you can pay for it using a credit card, paypal and lots of other ways. The page is 'padlocked' so you can be quite sure that your transaction will be safe.
Calling - This is so simple on the condition everything prior to making a phone call has gone well i.e. downloading, mic and speakers. Once someone has 'accepted' you as a contact or even added you then all you need to do is click on them and press a big green button that'll say call.
IM - I only really use this when a friend I want to get into contact with isn't online and I want to tell them to call me as soon as they are lol. Very similar to MSN and all other IM services but what I like about it is that if the person isn't online your message isn't just 'not sent' but the person receives it when they log in again. The emotions are also a LOT better than the ones on MSN and never fail to make me laugh! If you haven't spoken to someone in a while or wanted to remember what you were talking about its quite handy to have your conversations saved which Skype does unless you delete them.
Conferencing - I reckon this is one you'll love or hate! Remember those ridiculously large MSN conversations you had with like 20 people? Well with Skype it's possible to do this with up to 100 people! Personally I find these 'conversations' very confusing and unnecessary as usually people just say 'hi' for 20 mins but this may be something you'll love if you have a lot of friends and can type at around the speed of sound...
I would definitely recommend Skype to anyone! Good quality home and international calls for free or at a fraction of the price. It's ideal for anyone with absent friends and relatives or anyone else. I guess what i'm trying to say is... Skype really does connect people!
How to get it - www.skype.com
There is a download link on the homepage that will get you on your merry way.
If you want to catch up on the news whilst having a bit of a giggle then Mock the Week is the show for you because lets face it nowadays there is nothing funny about watching the news! Mock the Week is a topical comedy show that pokes fun at all the biggest news stories of the previous week, if you haven't seen it the comedic stylings are said to be quite similar to other BBC shows such as Have I got news for you or Never mind the Buzzcocks. It started life on BBC2 and was first aired in June 2005 and has grown in notoriety since then meaning it has been given better time slots as well as being shown on BBC1. The show is now in it's 7th season. I've always enjoyed the BBC2 comedic style but Mock the Week is definitely my favourite show!
Dara Ó Briain the presenter is judge, jury and executioner I.e. he decides who wins. There are 2 teams of 3 comedians all striving to make the most funny or outrageous jokes in order to get points for their team. There are 4 regular panellists and 2 guest comedians, more on this later. Each team have a leader who generally has the final say on answers given and who are also ultimately responsible for ensuring their team wins. The rivalry between the two teams adds to the comedy immensely! The show is somewhat structured though most of the testosterone fuelled panellists enjoy 'besting' each other so it's not unusual for the panellists to go off on wild hilarious tangents.
ON THE PANEL
Dara Ó Briain - The Presenter
An award winning Irish comedian and veteran of the show. He along with other members has been with the show from the very beginning and although he isn't a panellist and cannot offer ridiculously funny answers to the proposed questions himself the panel regularly goad him and include him in their jokes.
Hugh Dennis - Team leader
Also with the show from the beginning Hugh Dennis is a well-known comedian if not a household name with shows like My Hero, Outnumbered, New Tricks and Have I got news for you in his portfolio. He is at his funniest when impersonating people in the regular feature in the show 'Between the lines' where his impersonations of notorious political figures and members of the monarchy will actually leave you in stitches.
Frankie Boyle - Panellist
The funniest man alive! Boyle never fails to entertain and more often than not comes out with the most outrageous 'I don't know if I can laugh at this' jokes. He has appeared on numerous panel based shows e.g. Have I got news for you and 8 out of 10 cats and seems to be hot property at the mo appearing on a great number of shows.
Andy Parsons - Team leader
Like many other comedians Parsons started his career doing stand-up and was the Time Out comedy award winner in 2002. On the show I'd probably say that Parsons brings the comedy with his bumbling, awkward persona.
Russell Howard - Panellist
The second funniest panel member. Howard has also traversed the topical comedy panel scene with Would I Lie to You? and 8 out of 10 cats. As well as being funny looking (sorry) he is an exemplary off-the-cuff comedian running with any and every topic and creating whole scenarios that may make you go 'what?!' but inevitably laugh out loud!
Guest panellists have included Gina Yashere, Jo Brand, Michael McIntyre, Ed Byrne and David Mitchell to name a few
*Headliners - A photo is given with the first letter(s) of the headline and the panellists make suggestions for what the headline could be.
*Spinning the news - A random news generator spins picking a random topic that a panel member must tackle.
*If this is the answer what is the question? - The answer to a news story is given and the panel make amusing suggestions as to what the question may be.
*Scenes we'd like to see - usually at the end of the show the panel suggest the most unlikely things you would hear from a well known public figure or a film etc
*Between the lines - A clip is shown with no sound and a panel member impersonates the voice of a recognisable person suggesting what they might be saying.
All in all a great show, I try never to miss it and on the rare occasion that I do off to the iplayer I go. Great for de-stressing for me anyway and I'd recommend it to anyone who isn't easily offended, has an interest in the news (obviously) and who likes to laugh out loud because it's that funny.
Currently showing on BBC2 at 9pm on Thursdays.
If you miss it you can catch up at http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/
Anyone who regularly traverses the tubes, buses or streets of London is likely to come across one of these sooner or later. Whether it is todays, yesterdays or last months. Recently more and more of these free daily newspapers have popped up around town bringing Londoners the entire goings on around town and beyond and does usually make for a very interesting read, provided it is not a slow news day.
The London Paper was first published on September 4, 2006 by NI Free Newspapers Ltd who also owns the companies that publish The Sun and The Times. It is available from Monday through to Friday and has been since it was first published. It is distributes at national rail stations along side the metro and is also usually distributed by vendors outside tube stations.
They're everywhere and if you go pretty much any tube station you'll have one shoved in front of you by those poor vendors. I know people find them very shall we say 'forceful' at times and yes I am definitely ones of those Londoners who gets annoyed when they don't seem to get the message 'I'm trying to walk here.... I don't want a paper!' They are usually out there at peak time and early in the morning and clocking off time obviously to maximise the number of potential 'customers'. Though having sat on the back of the bus gazing out of the window at a street vendor who was either getting shunned or direct abuse! I have resolved a smile is really not too much to give.
Now for the paper itself, the cover print is always a distinctive mesh of black and purple, including the name of the paper in bold lower case letters. It's the size of any other tabloid newspaper out there which isn't so great for those packed tube journeys because you'll always have that person that insists they must have enough space to read it both pages side by side! Londoners! Highlighted articles are also shown on the front along with 'interesting' pictures relevant to the article. The paper is very image orientated with over a half of the paper being covered in various images easily. The paper is also very celebrity orientated with many of their front cover stories being on the antics of the 'hottest' celeb. You could say it's a glossy mag masquerading as a newspaper by adding a few things that you saw on the news last night and a sports section! But then again are they just catering to what Londoners want?
Not the most comprehensive reviews of all the worldly goings on or the most intellectual stimulating, thought-provoking articles but the paper delivers on entertainment. Typical article topics include ideas on how to improve your sex life and the 'cool' squatters who have taken over a gallery and called it art. On the occasions when they do tackle 'real news' you get an dumbed-down overview of the topic, though it does give you enough info to impress colleagues on the Monday by sounding somewhat knowledgeable. The articles are quite short though unless you have a really long journey that's a good thing especially after a long day at work.
The Paper covers this area painstakingly, as opposed to their news items in this area no stone is unturned and as much as can be said is said. There are regular fashion and celeb spotting features in the form of 'thelondonstyle' and 'thelondonbuzz'. These regularly feature some celeb falling out of a bar with a cringe worthy caption or shameless plugging of various high street stores in the form of all their latest items (though cheaper than a glossy mag which would effectively do the same).
From everything from the latest Broadway show to the hottest clubs and theme nights out, nights out are what the paper is very good at. I commend whoever is in charge of this section as the biggest and most well-known events around town as well as the underground events are listed. This is a really good source of info in my opinion and amazing for a free paper! A good section of the paper is dedicated to entertainment and contains comprehensive reviews.
I'm a big fan of Sudoku, and ever since I learnt how to play properly I love to play when stuck on a train. The London Paper does not disappoint with three Sunoco puzzles of varying difficulty. There are other regular puzzles e.g. the WordPuzzler and a cross word. There are also regular cartoon strips and horoscopes.
I know next to nothing about sport, so I can't really comment as to how good it is. It is approximately four pages long and covers the most if not all the big sporting events. I imagine if I read these pages, it would give me just enough to vaguely follow though again these pages are very image heavy. Though my lack of interest in the subject on the whole makes this speculation.
The amply named London Paper is generally a good read and worth picking up if you find yourself stuck on a train or bus for a certain amount of time and find the need for some intellectual stimulation (be it limited).
The London Paper Online - http://www.thelondonpaper.com/
Thanks for reading!
When the old family washing machine finally packed up after a good 9 year run (R.I.P) it was time to time to turn our attention towards getting a new machine to live up to the old one's speeds, reliability and general performance. It was quite a few months ago now that we were flicking through an old Argos catalogue looking for a new machine.
The criteria that had to be met were:
1) High speeds for those stubborn stains
2) A good energy rating, so I feel like i'm doing my bit.
3) A good price
We finally decided on the Indesit SIXL 145S because it pretty much met all the above criteria though we did have to get over the opaque door which although seeming very small it was a weird notion not to be able to see the washing at all until the cycle finished. As previously stated we bought it from the Argos catalogue which is the general done thing in my house for some reason. We got free delivery and a very kind man installed it for us for no more than a cup of tea!
The washing machine looks very unique, the blue door and silver machine is really quite stylish and is a nice edition in our kitchen. Washing powder/tablets/fabric softener or whatever else is loaded into the inside of the door. This is much more convenient than having to clean the tray with other machines, but you should also be warned if you miss, there is much more chance everything will end up on the floor! Though there are clear and simple instructions on how to put in detergent in the form of trouble-free fill levels so there shouldn't be too much of a problem here.
Washing itself couldn't be simpler! The machine only has 6 buttons and one of those is the power button! I know you're thinking 'well that's way too oversimplified' or 'they must've left buttons out!' but I will say now I haven't used a washing machine that is more simple to use that did such a great job at getting my clothes clean. The buttons operate as follows:
30 degrees - daily wash - 30mins - 800rpm
30 degrees - delicates - 50mins - no spin
30 degrees - delicates - 50mins - 600rpm
40 degrees - colours - 1hr45mins - 1000rpm
60 degrees - white cotton - 2hrs25mins - 1400rpm
(And Power Button)
The first wash is great for those 'I need my clothes now' times provided they are not full of grime and you'll see they are all pretty fast cycles.
To start a wash you bung in your clothes, fill in the in-door tray and then press the power button which starts up the blue LED display on the front of the washer. Once you close the door it immediately locks itself and you should see a little red light. Select the cycle you want then you get to waft away and maybe watch a bit of TV in peace. The cycle is incredibly quiet even at its top speed! You can leave it to its own devices but if you are waiting on a wash, the bright blue LED lights let you see how much longer you'll have to wait. The more lights the less time you'll have to wait and once the wash is complete they fade in and out until you press the power button again.
I do love the new Indesit and might even goes as far as to say it's even better than the old Hotpoint washer, like a prettier, younger more virile model.
The machine has a multitude of great little features including:
-Automatic washing temperature regulation.
-A Load Balancing System
-Rinse Management controlled by sensors which extends the rinse cycle until there is no detergent left.
Before you rush out and buy you should note that if you overfill the wash or put in excessive soap etc you may return to discover your floor covered with soapy water because the washer has a release mechanism to stop it from breaking down supposedly but this doesn't apply to you or me because we're 'good' and would never do that.
If anything does go wrong though the machine comes with a warrantee.
Efficiency - A+
Capacity - 6kg
Spin Cycle - 1400rpm (top speed)
Colour - Silver (and blue)
Price - ASDA(£300), Argos(£349.99) = Shop around!
More info - www.indesit.co.uk
Mary Shelley's Frankenstein explores the idea of the 'creation of life'. The idea of Frankenstein seems to show how man can go too far in his exploration of what constitutes 'life'.Frankenstein' raises the never-ending question of how far is too far in relation to medicine. Frankenstein's monster is in effect a load of body parts put together to form a new being and I'm sure nearly everybody finds the idea of this utterly horrific though nowadays in medicine it is routine procedure to transplant organs from people dead and alive to others... something to think about.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Mary Shelley was subject to many a philosophical discussion about the meaning of life and the many great medical advances of the time as her father was a philosopher; this also meant she was exposed to many of the notable thinkers of her day. Some of Shelley's childhood was spent living very close to the abattoirs where she would have regularly seen animals being horrifically slaughtered on a regular basis. She also lived close to a prison where the hanging of convicts was seen as entertainment and there is no limit to the terrible sights she may have been party to there. When Shelley was five or six she heard of experiments being conducted on the bodies of convicts. Electricity was passed through there bodies to make them move (déjà vu?). Philosophy is all about knowledge, ethics and morality; I believe that the ethical lines at the time were definitely blurred as new advances in medicine meant people could effectively experiment on anything or anyone they wanted. All of these ideas of life and death must have had a profound effect on the young Shelley.
It must be noted that parts of Shelley's life bares an uncanny similarity to the things she wrote of in her novel. Her life was riddled with tragedy and altogether she loses her husband, step-sister and three out of her four children die very young. She also nearly dies in childbirth and her husband's wife also commits suicide while pregnant. Death is a very definite theme in 'Frankenstein'.
As a child Shelley was a party to many unconventional ideas as a child and about the nature of life and whether it could be created artificially. It was also suggested in certain discussions that humans rather than God were the masters of the earth: 'Frankenstein' definitely embarks upon this idea. It is in reference to the previous point made in my mind no coincidence that the full title of Mary Shelley's famous work is Frankenstein or The Modern Prometheus. In Greek myth Prometheus stole fire from the Gods so dared to measure himself up as a one of the Gods. Prometheus punishment was to have his liver plucked out by an eagle everyday and his liver would miraculously grow back every night so the punishment could continue. Similarly Victor Frankenstein also suffers over and over because he dared to become or measure himself up to God. The original concept of Frankenstein was born from the proposal of a ghost story made by Mary's then husband Percy Bysshe Shelley whilst residing on the shores of Lake Geneva.
Frankenstein retells his story to the explorer Walton and his crew but it is almost as if he is speaking directly to the reader. The story begins with us being introduced to the ambitious explorer Robert Walton the captain of a ship heading for the North Pole; we hear of his dangerous expedition, that though starting successfully starts to turn sour. Walton comes across as an ambitious man who is determined to achieve his goal no matter the consequences, he slightly reminds me of our main character. After we are introduced to Walton we come across a dishevelled, drained Victor Frankenstein who then tells us the epic tale of Frankenstein. Even though it is Frankenstein recounting the tale to Walton during the novel Frankenstein's monster becomes the narrator of his specific experiences. I believe this was a conscious decision made by Shelley in order to allow you to understand the plight of the monster: this decision is integral in communicating any kind of sympathy for the monster as Frankenstein's account is very selfishly all about himself and his terrifying experiences. As both Frankenstein and his monster 'talk' to the reader we are given the some-what separate experiences of both of them. Frankenstein is very selfish in the way he thinks only of himself, his disappointment in the beauty of the monster he tried so hard to create, his terrors, his nightmares, his woes at how the experiment he had dedicated so much time to, had turned out. His blatant disregard for effectively deserting this 'child', helpless in the world and his outright rejection of any responsibility for what he has done causes him to lose any of my sympathy. The idea of the monster being a lost child in the world is reinforced by his experiences e.g. , 'A strange multiplicity of senses seized me, and I saw, felt, heard, and smelt, at the same time; and it was, indeed, a long time before I learned to distinguish between the operations of my various senses.' Frankenstein almost loses his to be wife not to mention his mind though I still find it very hard to empathize with his egotistic, self-centred character.
Frankenstein's extreme displeasure in what his creation and effectively his life's work turned out to be are brought to fruition when we are introduced to the 'monster' for the first time. The 'monster' absconds from Frankenstein's apartment and Frankenstein himself is seized by a terrible fever: in which he seems to be tormented by the 'monster' he created. Shelley uses at this point a lot of imagery and this is how a lot of the horror felt by the very being of the monster is communicated. The descriptive language and imagery at this point communicates the horror felt by Frankenstein after creating such a hideous thing. 'His yellow skin scarcely covered the work of muscles and arteries beneath; his hair was a lustrous black, flowing; his teeth of a pearly whiteness; but these luxuriance's only formed a more horrid contrast with his watery eyes, that seemed almost of the same colour as the dun white sockets in which they were set, his shrivelled complexion and straight black lips.' The language is no doubt really quite dated though it is through it's eloquence that the tale is accurately conveyed. Frankenstein and his 'monster' find each other and themselves over their journey and 288 pages.
The deep moral issue of the 'science' used in Frankenstein has a huge effect on what the reader thinks of Frankenstein. He essentially chops up pieces of different people (mostly convicts), puts them all together and gives it life. I don't believe anybody today reading Frankenstein will find this in any way 'acceptable'. This point ties in with ethical issues that are present today and man's search for knowledge: I believe Shelley intended Frankenstein to show how this thirst for knowledge can go too far. Though Frankenstein consequentially pays for doing this in the most vicious way I had no sympathy for him only really for his family who seem to bear the brunt of Frankenstein's monster's revenge. The fact that the 'monster' is made into a complete outcast and has such a bad time trying to find his way like an 'abandoned child' affects the way in which we respond to the acts he later commits. Mary Shelley's Frankenstein was probably before it's time socially with its ideas and themes (e.g. the idea that man can go to far, out casting people for differences etc) she goes against the norm of the time to produce this revolutionary masterpiece. If you haven't yet make sure to read this book!
It's only recently that I've got into drinking fruity combinations of fizzy drinks. Generally I stick to all the different coke and caffeine concoctions out there my favourites being Coca Cola and Dr Pepper. I remember once taking a sip of a friend's flat Fanta orange and it was enough for me to stay away from the drink for a good 6 yrs! I know nothing tastes good flat but I just remember sickly sweet. I think the newer additions to the Fanta range are without doubt much better than the original, like in the case of icy lemon though I think the fruit twist mix is the best.
The packaging is very noticeable and you really can't miss the vibrant red drink with the bright red and orange cover. The bottle is curved which also makes it stand out and more practically it also just makes it a lot easier to hold. On the bottle you'll find a summary of the nutritional info as well as the ingredients and general company information
The mesh of flavours in the soft drink is powerful without overpowering each other. The taste is a mix of passion fruit and peach and it smells amazing. The flavours fizz and churn around in your mouth, delivering a sweet mesh of exotic flavours. Make sure you serve it cold it really isn't the same flat! Opening a bottle is a delight every time and the fragrant fragrance reminds me of summer and more exotic climates. The perfect getaway in a bottle, who'd have thunk it? More recently the product has changed and now has no artificial flavours or colours which are always great, a little less to worry about when enjoying the sugar laden drink! The drink is 'made with real fruit juices' though a quick glance at the label will tell you these fruit juices are from concentrate.
Per 250ml serving
Calories - 94
Sugar - 23.1g
Fat - 0.0g
Salt - 0.00g
You can find Fanta fruit twist in 330ml cans, 500ml bottles and 2l bottles. The 2l bottles are always on great offers especially in the bigger supermarkets. Recently I've seen Somerfield selling them for £1 each but you can get them for even less when you take yup 2 for 1 offers or buy in bulk
Fanta is a product made by the Coca-Cola Company:
The Coca Cola Company
Coca Cola Enterprises LTD
I do love my free online gaming and I generally find myself drifting towards a certain website every now and again to fulfil my gaming needs and just recently it's been Zylom.com. I don't quite remember how I came across the site but there it was sitting in my bookmarked favourite gaming sites which I refer to for those 'I have 20 mins or so to kill' moments so I gave it a go.
Zylom is just one of the many online gaming sites out there nowadays but it really does have its charm. There are 8 different types of gaming options:
-3 in a row
These games obviously entail you matching things 3 in a row in order to complete the levels or game. To any normal person it seems that there are so many games you can play that would entertain you merely through matching 3 in a row right? Wrong... well apparently anyway. Zylom games have 56 games under this category alone which are designed to keep you happily matching 3 in a row in some fashion for many many hours. The 2 most popular games are Zuma by which you control a stone frog idol of the ancient Zuma in 'this thrilling action puzzle'. The other is Bejewelled 2 in which you swap adjacent gems to create rows of 3 or more identical gems in awe-inspiring planetary backdrops.
-Action (My favourite)
You complete missions or carry out tasks to complete and progress through levels. All games have very different themes, one minute you're a gold digger and the next you own your own boutique its all very exciting really! These are the games that keep me on this site for hours at a time. Just as any game progression through the levels becomes a near obsession and even though the online games have fewer levels that the online games (more on this later) they still seem to go on forever in a good way. You get to take on personas and earn cash to swap to better yourself/environment The top two games in this category at the mo are Fairy Rush where you must remove matching groups and rescue fairies from the clutches of pirates in Fairy Island and Gold Rush - Treasure Hunt where you mines and search for gold nuggets and other treasure.
Various Mahjong games with an undoubted Zylom twist are given here. I will say if you like strict Mahjong games that exercise those brain muscles and require concentrated skill and great strategy then Hotel Mahjong may not be your cup of tea. The top two games in this category are Mahjong Fortuna where 'speed and intellectual skills are your most important weapons' hmm maybe not and funnily enough Mahjong Fortuna 2!
Word games that generally consist of matching up letters or finding/creating hidden words. So nothing too hard there either. The top game in this category is Bookworm where you have link letters to feed the Bookworm where longer words are worth more points so you may want to brush up on your vocab if you want to make the leader board.
Here we have the beloved 'original' puzzle games such as sudoku and even jigsaw puzzles! If you wish to get back to your gaming roots.
All the card games we know and love and then then some of the most random games I have ever seen chucked in the mix too. Have a look at SKIP-BO Castaway Caper (the most popular game??)
The least 'fruitful' gaming category containing only 5 games 'aww'. Also 4 out of 5 games are some kind of slant on trivial pursuit...
The name of the game is to reveal! Reveal! Reveal! Sorry trying to make it sound fun and exciting but to me this is just boring as hell! The 'reveals' are anti-climactic and actual make you feel like you've wasted your time after 5 mins of gaming! (Though ill spend a couple of hours happily playing an action game such as 'farm frenzy' what does that say!!!) The most popular game in this category is Mortimer Beckett and the Time Paradox.
Registering on the site is quick and easy; it only takes a few minutes but is essential for free game play! As you only get to play a game 5 times as a guest before they ask you to pay for games you input a username, email address, your age and gender and that's it. Once you register you can play any game for 30-60 mins before getting 'cut out', basically before they ask you to go deluxe a.k.a. 'you're gonna have to pay for the rest of the game mate'.
Fun pass, online v download, help pages most popular games change, claims 15million visitors, loading time, high scores, not aces to all levels
There are quite a few gaming options on this site, playing for free, downloading games or using a zylom fun pass.
You never really get to see the whole game as you only have access to a portion of it which can get very annoying though you can play games for a good hour or more on this option so unless you are somebody that really likes to start what they finish it isn't too bad. With this option you also get advertisements while the game loads though this is only for a few seconds.
The good news is some games are free to download but this isn't the case for all games. Some games are around and in excess of £15 *cough* just a bit steep me thinks.
-Paying for a Funpass
*you can play any game you want
*there are over 300 downloadable games to choose from
*games will not stop after 60 minutes
*you can play all games full-screen, with no ads
One month subscription = £19.95 per month
Three-month subscription = £13.25 per month
One-year subscription = £6.95 per month
Two-year subscription = £6.65 per month
If you want towards those high scores I suggest getting a fun pass because you have little to no chance if you can't complete the game. The high scores are outrageous!!
Only use this site if you're partial to their specific games I say. Many other sites provide you with an 'easier' way to pass your time and none of the frustration at not ever being able to complete a game (well if you don't want to download it). Altogether though a good gaming site, a variety of gaming options and good quality games.
I must admit that reading is not a frequent pass time of mine so when I do find a book that I don't want to put down I have very high regard of the book and its author. The reason I started reading the book is I basically wanted something to read before I went off to the land of nod as I find reading at night generally helps me get off to sleep. Finding this around the house was great and actually kept me up reading on many an occasion.
About the author
Arthur Miller is an award winning social playwright; his plays are acts of protest. At the time of this book immigration was a very taboo subject and immigrants were looked down on by society, you could argue not much has changed... Arthur Miller being a social playwright makes a conscious effort to challenge these views with 'A View from the Bridge'.
In the play we find the character Eddie Carbone. Playwright Arthur Miller tells the story of the New York longshoreman who allows his misguided feelings for his niece-in-law to destroy him. Eddie is an Italian-American who lives with his wife Beatrice and his orphaned niece-in-law Catherine. He is idolized and respected by his family and whole community but that all changes after his Sicilian cousins Marco and Rodolfo come to stay.
Eddie begins as an all round very likeable character and exhibits 'heroic' characteristics in his willingness to take in his immigrant cousins and because of this the audience is drawn to him. He becomes even more likeable when it is made apparent just how much he looked after Catherine. Though this likeability doesn't last for long. His eventual downfall is a direct result of his unwillingness to learn from his mistakes.
The book is a play and so when reading it you should bare in mind that it is supposed to be performed.
The issues the play explores are taboo but inevitably human because after all what is love. Set in New York, Brooklyn in a community of immigrants originating from Italy and Sicily the central theme of the play could be argued to be the 'Sicilian code of honour'. Understanding this is a must for understanding the actions of everyone in the play.
Without ruining the plot for you this play will no doubted leave you thinking and maybe even change your views (yeah its one of those). I like the way Arthur Miller gets his message across, i'm so used to big blockbuster movies or books nowadays tackling an issue or aspect of life with great vigour and placing a lot of emphasis on the subject matter, supposedly to get the story/message across. Though I find the situations presented are quite abstract and characters unrealistic. Arthur Miller has the ability to convey a story about real people without exaggeration for 'added effect' whilst getting his point across with painfully accurate realism, that you find very hard to just wave-off as a 'story'.
EDITION: Hard back
Custard has the ability to make or break that Apple Crumble, cake or whichever desert you decide to slather it over, so it's very important. Well it's important to me because I LOVE custard I have a weird obsession with the stuff. I don't know if it's the deliciously creamy taste or mixing it with the sweet stuff but I really can't get enough. Some people's vices are chocolate, fizzy drinks or crisps mine is CUSTARD!! So baring all this in mind it's especially important that I choose the right type of custard. So as to make sure I don't balloon if I decide to have it with something say a few nights a week (yes that much :O) whilst also getting the good stuff that hit's the spot.
Ambrosia custard is no doubt the best non homemade custard I have ever tasted and I have tasted a few evidently lol. I immediately got hooked on the full fat version which I must say was not good times... so as a compromise I went for this low fat version of the Devon Custard. I say compromise but really its not, because this is one of those times where the quality of the product isn't reduced with the low fat/sugar free etc version.
The custard comes in a tin like many of the other quality products in the ambrosia line. The tin is blue and green and the image of a valley is pictured above, supposedly because it's made in Devon ''for over 90 years''. There are also now the calories (130) per 140g serving highlighted on the front of the tin, with the percentage of adults GDA (6.5%) like on most packaging nowadays. This is really helpful for all the dieters out there, much easier than working out percentages and what not from the comprehensive nutritional info on the back of the can. On the tin there is also a little about the company giving the wholesome family company image, microwave and oven guidelines and contact info if you should so ever need it.
LOVELY CREAMY CUSTARD (VERDICT)
The custard is just to my taste so I am undeniably biased. The thick, creamy, smooth, mouth-watering custard is more than enough to satisfy any sweet tooth. Other big brand custards just don't meet my standards especially the powdered custards which for me always just turn out rubbery and unpleasant. There is quite a bit of sugar in the custard which is a common feature of low fat products but if you don't mind that I would definitely give ambrosia a try. Ambrosia has allowed me to tame my custard sweet tooth as well as ensuring that my waistline doesn't balloon out of control. The custard looks and smells delicious and doesn't taste like a low fat product. Lovely.
Per 140g serving
Energy - 130kcal
Protein - 4.1g
Carbohydrate - 22.7g
(Of which sugars) - 16.8g
Fat - 2.5g
(Of which saturates) - 1.4g
Fibre - 0g
Sodium - 0.1g
Salt - 0.14g
Calcium - 149mg (18%RDA)
Allergy Advice - Contains Milk
Priced around 40p - 80p
A daily pressure wash for your skin! Not the most pleasant of images but I think it's only right I get across accurately how the scrub performs. The reason I first went on the search for an exfoliating scrub was because at the time the odd 'cough' blemish decided to show up at the most inconvenient of times not that it isn't always inconvenient. So I decided instead of using my usual gentle face washing gel I would start my war on spots!
I knew I was looking for an exfoliating scrub and when I enquired the St Ives was a name that constantly popped up so I thought I might as well start there.
The squeezy white and apricot bottle has the product name in front of the backdrop of the Alps. The distinctive bottle has a net weight of 170g and has a heavenly subtle apricot smell when in close proximity. The actual scrub is a pale orange and contains darker coloured exfoliating beads which cleanse your pores of all the dirt and oil that may build up.
The scrub is obviously quite rough on the skin compared to normal daily face washes though the formula has been specially fortified for everyday use so I don't think it does any harm to your skin to scrub and really get into your pores. To apply the product to your skin, you first moisten your face because the scrub is quite thick water helps it to really travel over your face. Then gently massage the product onto your skin for about a minute or so making sure you get the full benefit of those magic beads, then wash it off and pat it dry. It really does leave your skin glowing with a slight hint of apricot smelling loveliness. Rather than rub your skin with an abrasive towel it really is best to moisturise straight after instead if you don't want to feel 'delicate' for a couple of hours after, especially if you have sensitive skin! After rinsing my skin always feels invigorated and I have that 'clean' feeling. I also love how the scrub doesn't make my skin dry which definitely a common feature of other exfoliating scrubs out on the market.
I've used this scrub for a number of years now and really can't speak any higher of it. I've given up any type of weekly exfoliating treatments and extortionate salon treatments in favour of my magnificent little apricot bottle. I have really seen the benefit of a daily exfoliating scrub versus a weekly/monthly one. In my experience of using this daily scrub my skin looks fresher, feels cleaner and it is very very rare that I experience an outbreak. Prevention is better than cure and I think weekly exfoliants endeavouring to get rid of a weeks worth of build up can't be a good thing. The St Ives scrub is definitely not as an intensive treatment as other weekly scrubs so if that's what you're looking for it's not for you. Though I think it's a better investment, cheaper, preventative and very effective.
*Price £2.50 - £3.50
*Weight 170g (6 oz)