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dkm1981

dkm1981
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Member since: 08.02.2009

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    • Cornflake Cakes / Recipe / 6 Readings / 6 Ratings
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      28.09.2014 23:13
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      • Tasty
      • Fun
      • Simple

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      • "Better with Krispies!"

      Mmmmm . . . Chocolatey Goodness!

      I love these cereal and chocolate combined treats - I am loathe to call them cakes because they don't really constitute a cake I don't think - but I like to change it around about. I am not a big fan of the sharp bits that you get when you use cornflakes and they harden with the chocolate - I find that they hurt the inside of my mouth and there is no fun in that so here is my recipe . . . (PS I have left out quantities because it really depends on how many you want to make and how chocolatey you want them - it is really easy to work it out as you are going along)


      -Ingredients-

      Rice Krispies
      Mars Bars

      -To Make-

      Melt the mars bars in a bain marie, by placing a large glass bowl over a smaller pan of boiling water. You want to make sure than there is at least a couple of centimetres gap between the bowl and the water. Do it gently and stir continuously to prevent the Mars Bars from splitting. Once it has fully melted, then take it off the heat and pour in the cereal a little at a time and stir them in well to cover the chocolate completely. Once you have used up all the chocolate by coating the cereals thoroughly, use a spoon to scoop them into individual cake cases and allow them to set in the fridge.

      -Other Hints-

      I use the Mars Bars because they give the cakes a nice chewy texture, if you prefer not to do this, you can use a good quality chocolate - dark white and milk all work equally well!

      You can do it with marshmallows instead if you don't want any chocolate at all.

      Enjoy!

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    • Sandwich / Recipe / 3 Readings / 3 Ratings
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      28.09.2014 22:43
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      • Filling
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      • Tasty

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      • "None - it's a sandwich!"

      My Three Favourite Sandwiches!

      Everybody looks a good sandwich, but which is your favourite? These are my three favourite kinds of sandwich . . .

      Salmon Roll - I first had this on a Christmas market in Cologne, Germany and I have recreated it at home since to good effect. You get one fresh salmon steak per person and cover it is salt and pepper and a little chili powder if you like a bit of a kick then grill it until it is cooked to your liking. Meanwhile bake one medium sized parbake roll per person, cut it in half and add a generous amount of soured cream or mayonnaise (whichever you prefer) and some shredded lettuce. break up the salmon steak and fill the sanwich with it.

      Pastrami Bagel - Lightly toast a sesame seed bagel and then fill with sliced gherkins, lettuce, mayonnaise and slices of pastrami. I love this one because it is very American, it is quite luxurious but is easy and cheap to make.

      Chicken Sandwich - This is my absolute favourite and it might sounds a bit boring to be my favourite but it is the bread that makes it. I use Tesco's salt and pepper tiger baguettes which are absolutely amazing when they are fresh. I just top it with a bit of butter, plenty of salad cream and slices of freshly roasted chicken breast - delicious!

      So there you have it, my top three sandwiches, all very different but all equally delicious. What is your favourite sandwich? I'm always looking for new inspiration!

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    • Snacks and Standbys / Recipe / 7 Readings / 7 Ratings
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      28.09.2014 14:02
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      • Quick
      • Easy

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      • "Not the healthiest!"

      Easy Nachos

      This is a dish I make when we are short on time and fancy something a little bit naughty but tasty. When I say a little bit naughty, it is probably more than that, but it is good all the same and everybody needs a treat every once in a while. This recipe makes enough for two.

      -Ingredients-

      A large bag of salted tortilla chips
      A jar of salsa dip
      sliced chicken breast
      Grated cheddar cheese

      -To Make-

      On two dinner plates, layer a few tortillas, a spoonful of salsa, a bit of chicken and a sprinkling of grated cheddar cheese. Repeat this until all the ingredients run out (usually about four layers I find) and top the whole lot with some more grated cheese. Put each plate into the microwave for five minutes until the cheese is bubbling and the bottom of the plate is hot.

      -Other Hints-

      I make this cheaply because I use supermarket own brand salsa and tortilla chips. You can use flavoured tortilla chips, but I find that plain salted ones work the best.

      If you like your food with a bit of a kick, use spicy salsa, or stir in some chopped chili into the salsa before adding it to the recipe.

      It is hard to make it so the two plates are ready at the same time unless you have two microwaves, so I tend to cook one for four minutes, then the other for four minutes and then finish each of for a minute so they are ready closer together.

      You can make the stacks quite high because they do shrink a bit during cooking!

      Enjoy!

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      • Breakfast & Brunch Recipes / Recipe / 3 Readings / 3 Ratings
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        28.09.2014 13:48
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        • Filling
        • Tasty
        • Easy

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        • "Longer to make than a bowl of cereal!"

        dkm1981's Breakfast Burritos

        I often make these breakfast burritos for hubby and myself when we are having a lazy morning and brunch is on the cards. They can be adapted to whatever you like most but are tasty and filling. Recipe is for a generous portion for two.

        -Ingredients-

        Four tortilla wraps
        Two handfuls of grated cheddar
        Two teaspoons of tomato puree (or tomato ketchup if you don't have any)
        Four slices of smoked ham, cut into strips
        Sliced mushrooms
        Sliced peppers
        Sliced onions

        -To Make-

        Fry the sliced vegetables until they are softened and brown and then throw in the sliced ham to warm it through. Meanwhile spread the tomato pruee onto each of the tortilla wraps and sprinkle some grated cheese onto each one. Pour the ham and vegetable and ham mixture over the top of each dividing it between the four wraps.Roll up the wraps and cut them in half. warm up a dry griddle pan and put the halved wraps on to cook. turn them halfway through cooking and ensure they are golden brown on each side and that the cheese has melted. Serve immediately.

        -Other Hints-

        If you like your food with a bit of a kick, you can add some chopped chili or garlic to the mix when you fry it.

        You can add any vegetables that you like, these are just my preference. Also you can switch the ham for chicken if you want to make these for lunch rather than breakfast.

        I add a bit of pepper to the mix, but not salt because I find they are salty enough with the ham and cheese.

        I sometimes add a few baby or cherry tomatoes to the mix as well so make them a little less dry, it depends on your preferences.

        Enjoy!

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        • Speedy Meals / Recipe / 3 Readings / 3 Ratings
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          28.09.2014 13:36
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          • "Fairly Cheap"
          • "Easy To Make"

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          Creamy Bacon and Mushroom Pasta

          This is one of my favourite meals to make and eat. it is quick for a weekday meal and tastes really delicious, even if I do say so myself. The recipe below makes enough for a generous portion for two people.

          -Ingredients-

          150 grams pasta (I use penne)
          8 rashers of smokey bacon, cut into 1 cm slices
          150 grams mushrooms, sliced
          1 medium onion thinly sliced
          1 carton Elmlea single
          Salt and pepper

          -To Make-

          Gently fry the onions and mushrooms on a medium heat until they are softened then remove from the pan. Turn the heat up on the pan then throw in the bacon and fry until it is well cooked, almost crispy. Then put the onions and mushrooms back in and mix together. Add the Elmlea and turn down the heat. Cook for around ten minutes adding salt and plenty of pepper about halfway through. The sauce should thicken but do not allow it to boil.

          Start the pasta just after you add the cream so that they are both ready around the same time. Once both are cooked, then mix the pasta into the bacon mix and serve straight away.

          -Other Hints-

          It isn't the healthiest meal on the planet at first glance, but that is why I use Elmlea rather than full cream and I also use one cal cooking spray instead of oil or butter to soften the onions and mushrooms. I also find that this prevents the sauce from becoming greasy.

          You need plenty of pepper to really bring it together and not too much salt because it will already be salty from the bacon. Make sure you add a bit of each at a time and keep tasting it. Remember the salty flavour will intensify during cooking, so go easy.

          If you want to make it a proper filling meal, serve it with a couple of slices of garlic bread.

          Enjoy!

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        • Vegetables / Recipe / 13 Readings / 11 Ratings
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          25.09.2014 13:10
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          • Cheap
          • Easy

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          • "Takes a while"

          Easy Mediterranean Vegetables

          This is a dkm1981 invented recipe that changes every time I make it, but essentially follows the same plan. I call it Mediterranean Vegetables because I think it looks very Mediterranean and the olive oil and chilli help. It is very easy to do and can be adapted to your favourite vegetables and to what is in season.

          -To Make Them-

          Basically you need to chop up a load of vegetables. I usually use new potatoes, courgettes, onions, peppers, mushrooms, baby tomatoes, baby corn, sugar snap peas, carrots; things like that in general although it doesn't matter what you use, like I say. Throw them all in an oven tray (leaving out the tomatoes initially) and pour over some olive oil, season with salt and pepper, add a teaspoon of chopped fresh chili and a clove of crushed garlic(I actually use lazy chili and lazy garlic because I find them much easier and they work just as well). Then roast the lot for about 45 minutes on a medium heat. Cut the tomatoes in half and add them to the tray about halfway through cooking. Give the vegetables a stir a couple of times during cooking.

          -Other Tips-

          If you are using things like potatoes and carrots which need longer than other ingredients, it is best to boil them for a few minutes first to soften them up.

          I usually serve them with a simple pork chop or something like that. The vegetables end up quite moist because of the tomatoes and the juices from them, so you don't need a sauce.

          It is easier I find to make a whole heap of them at one and freeze individual portions for a very quick meal later on. I actually find that they taste even nice warmed up again because the vegetables seem to soak up all the flavours even more!

          Enjoy!

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          • More +
            22.09.2014 14:17
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            • Soothing
            • "Taste Nice"

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            • "Not The Cheapest"

            Soothing, Fruit Halls Soothers.

            Whenever I get a scratchy throat or the signs of a sore throat, I turn straight to Halls Soothers because I find that they do the job perfectly and they are indeed very soothing. They are widely available and, as far as I know, come in three flavours - blackcurrant, peach and raspberry and cherry.

            Personally my favourite flavour is cherry although I find that they all work equally well and that they all taste pretty good actually. Whereas medicine type things always taste disgusting, these actually taste really fruity so that you feel like you are eating sweets rather than medicine. The flavours are really full and balance out the menthol effect well so that it is not too overpowering.

            The sweets are available everywhere more or less, although I find that the blackcurrant ones are more common and that you have to search a bit for the other two flavours.

            As I say, they work really well at soothing your throat because they have a menthol liquid centre that seems to coat your throat and gives instant relief from scratchy and dry throats. I find that you only need one or two as well and that they have a fairly long lasting effect which is good.

            They aren't cheap at 80p for a 45 gram packet which contains about ten or eleven sweets, but I think it is a price worth paying for the effect that they have. You can buy them in three packs as well, which makes them cheaper.

            Overall I would definitely recommend them because they taste good and work well.

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            • Nurofen Tablets / Pain Relief / 10 Readings / 10 Ratings
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              06.09.2014 13:50
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              • "Do the job"

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              • Expensive

              Expensive Pain Relief By Neurofen

              I usually don't spend a lot of money on tablets and pain killers because I just don't see the point. I tend to buy supermarket own brand versions and have never had any problems with them. I ended up buying these Neurofen tablets because I was at a petrol station and in need of pain relief and this is all that they had.

              The ones i got come in a pack of 16 and I think they cost just less than three pounds although I think you can get them in supermarkets for just less than two pounds. Either way it is pretty expensive I think, especially when you can get the supermarket equivalent for around the thirty pence mark and certainly no more than fifty pence.

              The company are a well respected one who have been making pain relief tablets for many years. They claim that their standard Neurofen tablets are proven to treat pain quickly and efficiently and I would agree with that. They are effective and they stopped my headache within about twenty minutes of taking them, which I thought was quite good. They aren't too big either, so they are easy to take. These ones don't have a sugar coating, but the caplet version of the same product does I think.

              So they are good, I agree with that. My main issue though is the price because they are no better, in my opinion, than their much cheaper, non branded counter parts. I just don't understand how they can justify charging up to ten times the amount.

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            • More +
              06.09.2014 12:43
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              • Cheap
              • "Nice design"
              • Comfortable

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              • "None for me"

              Sleek Design Comfortable Trainers From Reebok

              I am a Nike Air Max girl usually but, when my most recent pair of Air Max died the death, I couldn't find another pair that I liked. I like trainers that look like trainers, not works of art. Which is how I ended up with the Reebok Classics that I now have.

              The trainers are classic by name and classic by nature and design. They are exactly what trainers are supposed to look like. They are all white, with a hint of colour (in my case with pink stripes just above the sole). This means that they do look very bright and clean when they are new!

              Aside from the look of them, one of the main reasons I settled on these trainers is the comfort. They have a nice thick sole that makes them very comfortable when you are walking. The trainers aren't designed to be sports shoes, but more every day use trainers which is why it is important for me that they are comfortable for walking long distances, which these very definitely are. They don;t rub anywhere, even when they are new and when you walk a long way. The thick soles make them soft on impact, which is great.

              The trainers cost around the £50 mark, although I got mine for just £40 in the discount sports store near me. I think they are very good value for money, especially when you compare them to other brands (my last Air Max for example cost over £60).

              overall I would definitely recommend them for comfortable, decent priced trainers.

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            • More +
              06.09.2014 11:59
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              • "Long lasting"
              • "Good value for money"
              • " fruity smell"
              • Fresh

              Disadvantages

              • "Really only a day frangrance"

              Be Delicious - A Fruit Classy from DKNY

              I got this fragrance as part of a DKNY duo set with the pink one and I have to say that this green one is the one that I prefer. There have been a lot of different versions of the Be Delicious perfume over the years (red, pink, green, gold to name a few) but this is the one that I prefer.

              As you would imagine it is a very fruity fragrance, which is just up my street and makes it perfect for summer days when you want something light and fresh, that wont lay too heavily. It isn't really an evening fragrance I wouldn't say, because I think you need something heavier for that, but it is perfect for holidays. The overwhelming scent is of fresh apples - the smell you get when you cut an apple in half - but there are other notes of white amber, rose and violet to stop you smelling like a fruit salad when you wear it!

              The bottle is the iconic apple shape and is quite round and compact, which makes it ideal for carrying around in your hand bag. The bottle has a pump action spray in the top and it is not one that requires a lid or can be pressed accidentally so, again is ideal for travelling.

              The perfume costs around the £35 mark for a 30ml bottle which I don't think is bad value really for a designer fragrance. I find that it lasts well too because you don't need a lot of it to get an all day smell, which is good.

              Overall I would recommend the fragrance. It has stood the test of time, having been first introduced almost ten years ago, and you can see why. It is good value for money, smells lovely and is not too overpowering.

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            • More +
              06.09.2014 11:34
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              • "Do the job"
              • Cheap

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              • "Box doesn't state whether non drowsy"

              Asda's Good Value Version of Hayfever and Allergy Tablets

              I only have mild hayfever and allergies, so I don't like to spend a lot on tablets, which is why I tend to go for own brand ones rather than the big name ones. I have never had a problem with own brand ones and find that especially for the price, they are much better value for money and just as effective. I usually get Tesco ones, but tried the Asda ones this time.

              They come in a different box to the one shown in the picture. Now they feature the green and white that Asda seem to favour. I can't imagine this makes any difference at all to the product. They box contains 14 tablets and costs 90p. The idea is that you take them once a day for two weeks.

              I find that they are very good and help me no end. When summer comes I tend to have a permanent sniffle if I don't take anything, but two weeks of these tablets cured me of that. They are very small and so are easy to take with a bit of water. As with most tablets, it is recommended you take them with food. I skipped this a couple of times and had no adverse side effects. The box doesn't say anywhere whether or not they are non drowsy, but I didn't have any experience of drowsiness whilst I took them, so I guess they are non drowsy.

              In terms of value for money these are very good, costing less than a third of the big name equivalent and doing exactly the same job as far as I can tell. I would never go back to branded ones because they just aren't worth the extra cost in my eyes and I would definitely recommend this version from Asda.

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            • More +
              22.08.2014 10:46
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              Advantages

              • "The story"
              • "Stephen Fry's Voice"

              Disadvantages

              • "Some of the character voices"

              An Excellent Telling Of The Harry Potter Books

              Unless you have been living under a rock for the last decade, you will have heard of JK Rowling's series of books about the boy wizard Harry Potter. This is the first book in the series and is an audio version read by the inimitable Stephen Fry. I am a massive fan of both Harry Potter and Stephen Fry, so this is very much a match made in heaven for me.

              The story is exactly the same as you would find in the standard written version of the book; it is unabridged, so there is nothing missing. The story follows Harry's first year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry including his forming of friendships and meeting the dark wizard who made him an orphan when he was a baby.

              The audio production is great. It is very much made great by Stephen Fry who not so much reads the story as acts it using his voice. He is perfect for the role. He has a soothing and clear voice that is suited wonderfully to this book which can and should be enjoyed by children and adults alike. He reads slowly and clearly enough that anyone can enjoy it, without it being too slow and laborious for more advanced readers, as it were.

              When I say he acts with his voice, I mean that he gives characters their own personalities through their voices and brings to life JK Rowling's intentions perfectly. I read the written books before listening to the audio ones and somehow Fry has made them sounds like they did in my own head, which is just fabulous.

              The thing I love most about the production here is that it is purely storytelling and they don't try to dress it up with sound effects and background music like some productions do. The story and the teller are both excellent at what they do and there is no need for any extras. It is good to see that the producers of the audiobook have recognised this and left them to it.

              The only thing that has stopped me from giving it the full five stars is the fact that Fry is still finding his feet a bit in this book and so some of the voices are a little irritating in that they are very childish. Having said that, the main characters are only eleven so it probably makes sense. I find Hermione's voice a little grating and Harry's a little too high pitched in this book and the voices are less irritating in the later books.

              Don't let that put you off though, because the audio books are a great way of enjoying the Harry Potter books and are an excellent example of storytelling at its best. Definitely recommended for young and old alike.

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              • Clarks Arista Abe / Shoes / 6 Readings / 5 Ratings
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                06.08.2014 23:01
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                Advantages

                • Comfy
                • "Last well"

                Disadvantages

                • Expensive

                Plain Navy Court Shoes

                I have to wear navy blue court shoes for work and it is the bane of my life having to find them because so few people stock navy blue shoes, let alone ones that fit the strict guidelines that my work impose upon us. Fortunately these ones by Clarks do fit all the criterea in that they are navy blue court shoes that are totally plain in every way!

                I bought these the year before last. When I wear shoes to work, I have to admit that they get beaten up something chronic and generally only last a season. These ones lasted a little more than eight months, which is actually very good despite how little that might sound. I was really pleased with the durability of them and the fact that they still looked fairly new for quite a long while with only a little bit of polish here and there. The heals lasted well on them too. I often find that I have to get the heels on my shoes replaced at least once during a season, but these lasted the whole time which is nothing short of a miracle in my opinion.

                The look of them is quite stylish. I can't get excited about them because they are what they are, which is very plain, navy blue courts shoes. Having said that they do have a nice kitten style heel and a trendy rounded toe. The shoes are comfortable to wear too, which is what you expect from the Clarks brand.

                The only thing that I am not so keen on is the price. As you can imagine with having to buy the shoes so often, I don't like to spend a lot of money on them. At just over forty pounds a pair, these are more than I usually like to pay. I got them in the sale for thirty pounds and I think for that money I would recommend them.

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              • 3 Pr Winnie The Pooh Socks / Clothing / 4 Readings / 4 Ratings
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                06.08.2014 22:46
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                • Cute

                Disadvantages

                • None

                Winnie The Pooh Socks - Cute and Good Value

                I got these socks for a birthday present a couple of years ago. I have to admit that, despite being perhaps too old to, I still love Winnie the Pooh and Winnie the Pooh themed things. In fact I think more of my socks have Winnie the Pooh characters on that don't.

                This set or some of my favourites for a few reasons. Firstly they are pink themed. I am not a particularly girly girl but the colour of these suits the theme of the socks and the pictures that they have on them. They have Eeyore and piglet on who are both pinky coloured characters, so match the colours perfectly.

                Secondly, the socks are really cute and have good pictures on them. Sometimes you get cheap versions and the pictures aren't good but these are very good and quite bold so that they are immediately recognisable.

                The socks fit well and are very comfortable. They aren't too tight around the ankle either as some socks can be, although I have had no problems with them satying up when I am wearing them. I have had them a couple of years and they are still as good as new despite two years of heavy duty wear and heavy duty washing!

                I would definitely recommend them. They are available for around eight pounds for the set of three pairs of socks so they aren't too expensive and are good value for money, especially for Disney branded items. They would make an excellent gift idea - I certainly enjoyed receiving them as a gift!

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              • Hooded Parka Jacket / Clothing / 5 Readings / 5 Ratings
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                06.08.2014 22:32
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                Advantages

                • "Good summer coat"

                Disadvantages

                • "Not the cheapest"

                Next Parka - Great for Most Seasons

                I bought this parka from Next at the beginning of summer. It cost sixty pounds and was and is available in black and green. I have the green one and i absolutely love it. It is the perfect jacket for those spring summer and autumn days when the weather is too cool to go without a coat, but it is not cold enough for a big thick coat.

                It is a pretty trendy coat and looks like a traditional parka jacket with a hood and tails at the back. I am generally a size 12 to 14 but the size 12 in this was a very comfortable fit so I would recommend going for the lower size if you are between sizes like me. It is adjustable at the waist too which makes the fit even better and gives it a really nice shape when you are wearing it.

                The material is waterproof which is excellent for the UK weather and it has a light cotton lining which does an excellent job of keeping you warm or cool as necessary. It zips up all the way to the neck and has buttons as well so it can be very cosy if it is a little bit windy.

                The only thing that I don't like about it is that hood is not adjustable so when it is windy it doesn't stay up which can be pretty annoying.

                Apart from that, I would highly recommend this jacket for it versatility and decent value for money.

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