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katykicker

katykicker
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Member since: 11.12.2005

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      11.01.2014 02:20
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      A wonderfully simply yoghurt maker that helps me avoid the supermarket for another day!

      At Christmas, back in 2012, Father Christmas was very kind to me and brought me an array of gifts to kindly place under my Christmas tree. I had specifically asked for this yoghurt maker, via the technological advance of my Amazon wishlist. At just under £17 for this yoghurt maker, a recipe book, a sachet of 'fruit squirt' (a puree for adding to yoghurt) and a packet of natural yoghurt the starter pack that I requested was better value than paying around £14 alone for the yoghurt maker.

      I like to make my own baked goods, meals, bread and other items as it helps me avoid the supermarket for longer. By dehydrating items, having canned, frozen and fresh vegetables and fruit I am able to go shopping once every 7-10 days, allowing me to make less impulse purchases and save money. This is part of the reason why I wanted a yoghurt maker, to save me money on the expensive tubs of natural yoghurt that I buy each time I go shopping, and also because I love to make things myself, at home, as I spend most of my time at home when my husband is working and like to keep myself busy when my friends are at work. Because of health complaints I am frequently ill and because of this I like to do what I can for my body, in terms of healthy foods and 'good' bacteria, which is why I consume live yoghurt on a daily basis, as does my husband.

      This yoghurt maker is nothing special to look at as it basically looks like a large, tall, red and white plastic flask. There is no handle on the lid of course but that is how I would sum it up. The container is completely made of plastic, at least what I can see, and there is a red plastic insert (called a baffle) within that is pressed down to the bottom of the cylinder. There is a hole in the red baffle, and a number of little ridges of plastic. The part of the Easiyo, that holds the actual yoghurt, the plastic container, sits within the cylinder and you can make yoghurt in 8-12 hours, with no electricity, no mess and not even any real effort. Basically, to use this you take your yoghurt pot, which holds 1 litre, and has measurement increments on the side, and you mix up some of the yoghurt within. Initially I used a sachet of Easiyo natural yoghurt that I received and to this I added filtered water halfway up the yoghurt jar. I then added 2 tablespoons of sugar, as suggested in the instruction booklet I received with this (the suggestion is 2-4 tablespoons) and then I shook it up. Once I had shook it for a good two minutes I then added more water up to the 'fill to top' marker, just before the very top, replaced the screw top red plastic lid and gave it another vigorous shake. While I was shaking up the yoghurt I had a full kettle of water boiling, around 1.5 litres, and I then put the red baffle in place, pressed it down to the bottom of the yoghurt maker, and then added in the boiling water until it reached the top of the baffle. I then added the mixed yoghurt to the cylinder and screwed on the chunky plastic lid. Overall it took me around 4-5 minutes to make the mixture and pour the water slowly so that I didn't splash myself or make any mistakes, a time which has now come down to under 2 minutes as I dump the water in, shake the pot a load and put it all together. Once the lid is on I then leave my yoghurt maker, usually overnight, for around 8-10 hours sometime. At 8 hours I find that the yoghurt still looks a little runny, but at around 10-12 hours I find that it has set beautifully, from the runny consistency that it starts off at, into a beautifully thick, creamy yoghurt, just like the one I used to buy from Yeo Valley. I then remove the pot, wipe off the water and put it in the fridge, I get the yoghurt maker, the baffle and the lid, shake off/pour away all the excess water and then leave upturned on my draining board for the day while the water dries and then I can put this straight back into my 'gadget' cupboard (with the lid taken off so it can fit comfortably).

      When researching this yoghurt maker, before asking for it from Father Christmas, I checked to find out if it was possible to make yoghurt without using the natural yoghurt mix that I first received. I have since found this recipe:

      2-3 Tablespoons of previous batch of natural yoghurt
      2 Tablespoons of skimmed dried milk powder
      2 Tablespoons of sugar
      1 litre carton of UHT milk (usually semi-skimmed or whole as they seem to set better) as required to fill back up to 1 litre mark, filling halfway first, shaking vigorously etc as required when using an Easiyo yoghurt mix sachet. I then save the extra milk, usually around 100ml and use this within 2 or 3 days in other recipes when cooking.

      This recipe has worked very well for me and with the natural yoghurt, which has something of a sour taste, I have found that I can follow this recipe, using a couple of tablespoons from the previous batch, for at least 4 or 5 batches before the taste is dulled somewhat for me and this stops being so tasty. This is when I get a small pot of Yeo Valley live yoghurt and use 1/3 of a small pot, so around 50ml, freezing the other 100ml in two batches for a couple of weeks time (keeping for no more than 6-8 weeks in the freezer). I then follow the above recipe again and I have now been able to make natural yoghurt without buying the Easiyo sachets. I have tried other sachets in the range, and so far I am yet to find a mix that does not set as advised by the 12 hour mark. I tend to just shut the lid up and leave it for at least 8-10 hours without opening it all, so I don't let the excess heat escape from the yoghurt maker.

      With the above recipe, and my method for making extra batches without the expensive kits, I am able to make 1 litre of yoghurt for around 85p as I pay just under 70p per 1 litre of UHT milk and the sugar and skimmed milk powder have a very low expense per tablespoon.

      There is an Easiyo instruction booklet, that comes supplied with this yoghurt maker, that shows you exactly, using pictures and text, how to make this yoghurt but it really is incredibly simply. Basically just take the cylinder, fill with hot water up to the top of the red baffle, add the mixed up yoghurt pot and leave overnight or for 12 hours - that's it! No electricity is required, other than to boil the hot water, and one kettle, mine holds 1.5 litres, is enough. The booklet provided has lots of useful information about the cultures and benefits within natural yoghurt, which makes interesting reading, and while I have had an unlucky 12 months health wise (chickenpox, measles, glandular fever and a variety of other more serious stuff going on more long term) I've been able to keep a healthy stomach through almost everything - a blessing when feeling under the weather. Since my bout of bad health has passed, about two months now, I've been feeling fantastic and better than ever, despite health problems affecting my life sometimes quite frequently.

      I tend to make the natural yoghurt , as opposed to the flavoured ones, as I like to make my own purees, toffee sauce and add things like nuts or fruit to my yoghurt to make it an extra delicious dessert, lunch accompaniment or even a special breakfast with honey. I feel that the money it costs me to make this yoghurt is definitely worth it, and 1 litre of my usual natural yoghurt was costing me around £3, or £2-£2.50 on special offer, so I am saving a few pence while being able to whip up fresh yoghurt at home without having to visit the supermarket urgently. The flavoured sachets, which I buy and use the one time rather than stretching out and re-making are around £2-£3 depending on where I buy them from and the quantity that I buy, but then they only need a little sugar, usually, and water added to them, so these come in at a good price again compared to the high quality flavoured yoghurts and the flavours that I have tried; cherry, toffee, vanilla custard, caramel, mango, peach and banana have been absolutely delicious and have not disappointed at all.

      I am rating this yoghurt maker 5/5 stars. Yes there is a small initial outlay but with it not requiring electricity I feel that it is a fantastic item, and one that I get a lot of use out of. I would say that I make yoghurt around every 3-4 days, depending on how much we've been using, and it takes me just minutes to prepare this with basically no cleaning or fuss. My husband is a big fan of this yoghurt, which is important to me as he can be fussy, and he says that the natural yoghurt takes like 'the yoghurt in a Muller Corner' which he adores so that must be good! I do add fruit puree, nuts, fresh fruit, frozen fruit, homemade salted caramel sauce or other delicious things to my yoghurt typically and I use the plain yoghurt in recipes such as curries, dips and sauces, to avoid using cream and this works very well too.I am a huge fan of this yoghurt maker and while I have read threads online that talk about making yoghurt in a thermal flask or slow cooker I prefer this method as it is no mess and no fuss really, it takes me minutes to put together and it is so simple that I don't need to refer to the instructions ever and can get it prepared in the time it takes to boil the kettle.

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      • More +
        10.01.2014 05:04
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        A nice tyre from Hankook.

        We are a two car household these days and as such with MOT time coming up, for both cars, right before Christmas, it is fair to say that we were doing what we could to save money without cutting corners in regards to safety. I needed four new tyres for my car, which is a second hand car I've had for around a year, and so I started to look around locally for new tyres, as I intend to keep my car for a year or two at least yet, and obtaining some prices. I was offered different tyres, with numerous statistics attached, from larger companies such as Kwik Fit and their staff seemed to be low on time or experience of what these statistics actually meant to me as a fairly new driver. I ended up purchasing Hankook Optimo 4S 155/70/R13/T tyres, and all season tyre, with each tyre costing me just £39 fitted including balancing and other required services. This seemed like an economical enough price, for my small 1.3 litre car, and these were the suggested tyres that fit my specific wheels, and I double checked this before my purchase using the Kwik Fit website which allows the entry of a registration number to find the correct tyres.

        Hankook tyres are not something I have ever heard of before. The specific tyres that I have purchased have a section width of 155, an aspect ratio of 70, a rim diameter of 13 inches and a speed rating of T. This information is recorded on the sidewall of the tyres, to prove that these tyres conform to European safety standards. The aspect ratio of 70 refers to the load index of my car, which is 335 kilograms. The T part, the speed rating, refers to the approximate MPH of 118, which I certainly never reach in my car but I just prefer to stick to all recommended/suggested manufacturer/garage parts when it comes to my car, to help ensure the safety of myself and any passengers in my car, as well as other road users.

        When I had these tyres fitted I had all four replaced at the same time. The tyres that I had fitted were brand new and it took under 30 minutes to have my tyres fitted and all relevant balancing and other requirements undertaken, this was at a local garage that I know and trust fully. From the moment I left the garage I could feel the difference between these tyres and my old ones, of which 3 were down to tread of around 2mm - 2.5mm when I went for my MOT. These tyres instantly felt more sturdy and smoother on the roads. Even on the short drive home, during which I drove an extra few miles to check that I was happy with everything, I could notice a significant difference. My car felt like the braking distance was improved, by at least a second I would say but of course it is hard to tell for sure, I felt like I was more in control of the steering of my car and generally I was having to work my car a little less than normal in order to stop safely or drive on rough terrains.

        The area where I live is a new area and as such some of the roads haven't been properly surfaced as we are still living near a building site. This means that when I leave my home in the morning I am already on a rough, bumpy terrain, and there is one large bump, where tarmac has been placed over some cabling, that usually hits my car particularly hard and I really feel it. Since having my tyres changed I do of course still notice it but my car seems to handle the bump better and I feel like I have more control when going over it. I also drive around on a number of roads with speed bumps and holes and this is another area where I have noticed increased braking capabilities, with me requiring the same amount of force as usual to slow down in a slightly quicker time.

        As the weather hasn't been snowy here yet I haven't tried these tyres out on snowy terrain but I typically only drive when absolutely essential if it has been snowing, just because I am a relatively inexperienced driver and don't feel I should be taking up a space on the road when it is very dangerous. I did recently get caught in a huge storm where winds were over 40 miles per hour and there was a sudden onset of terrible rain, as I was driving myself home from the hospital I really had no choice but to make the trip and I was caught in the worst of the storm. When driving along I could actually feel the wind, from the side, attempting to push my car across the road, and it took a lot of control of my little car to keep it on the straight that I was driving on, plus there was a huge amount of surface water on the road. I was travelling at around 25mph when the wind caught me, on a 40mph road, and I could feel that my car was going to aquaplane, I was able to very gently apply the brakes, in order to slow down slightly, before I hit a large patch of water and the tyres gripped the roads wonderfully. This was when I felt that the tyres were pushed to their ability and they held up fantastically allowing me to slow down further, quickly and safely, without aquaplaning on the excess surface water that was soaking the entire road.

        Overall I must say that these tyres have made a huge difference to the overall driving experience within my car. I can feel a difference in handling, braking, cornering and acceleration. I have not noticed much of a difference in fuel consumption but I typically only spend around £70-£100 a month on fuel as I don't normally do a lot of driving (the Christmas period was an exception to that!). I have been very pleased with the difference that these tyres have made and frankly I am shocked that my old tyres were almost down to the legal minimum, it really is no wonder I have noticed a difference. These tyres were cheap, compared to the more well known brands, but I have been very pleased with the quality of my driving with these tyres fitted. I am sure that they made a difference in the recent bad weather that I was driving in and I felt much safer knowing that I had brand new, high tread, tyres on my car. I have not noticed a large amount of noise from these tyres and they seem to be a little bit quieter than my previous ones, which is great as I am prone to worrying about every little noise that my car makes, although I obviously didn't actually take a decibel reading before and after changing my tyres to confirm this for sure.

        I had these tyres fitted in November and as such I've had around two months of driving, through various weather conditions, to properly test these, I have also driven around 2,500 miles in this time visiting family, attending work and enjoying days out with my family. My comments are based on driving a small 1.3 litre Fiesta, which has had an MOT and full service recently and is usually serviced every 9 months or so. I always ensure that all liquids and requirements are kept well topped up in my car as well as ensuring that routine maintenance is performed, any comments on the driving conditions in this review are based solely on my personal experience and based on my driving style, which is VERY safe! I am rating these tyres 4/5 as they give me confidence, comfort and extra handling when driving my car. I presume, from the ratings that these tyres carry, that more expensive tyres have better fuel efficiency and would be even quieter, because of this I have knocked off 1 star. I am very happy with these tyres, would recommend them and will definitely purchase them again if I don't upgrade my car before needing new tyres. These tyres are available from several websites, but I purchased mine and had them fitted locally from an independent garage.

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        • More +
          08.01.2014 23:21
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          A pretty decent cleaner from Tesco.

          I like to try and save money on my household budget, where possible, as I usually put any savings I make into a 'holiday fund' to pay for lots of lovely trips throughout the year. This kitchen spray, Daisy from Tesco, is available for around 50p, and this is for a 500ml trigger spray bottle.

          This kitchen spray comes in a trigger bottle, with a twist lid to prevent it being accidentally sprayed. The trigger spray works very well, and emits a generous spray wherever I want it to go. I've had no problems with the spray blocking up or anything like that. I don't have to put a lot of effort into releasing the spray either which suits me just fine. The bottle is white, with two large stickers on it, and I can't see at a glance how much is left, which is one downside, but I can shake it to know that there is still an ample amount inside before I go shopping.

          While this is a kitchen spray I have used this on a variety of surfaces including furniture in my lounge, to clean off spilled sticky juice, to clean my hob, the inside of my oven door, my kitchen worktops, my sink and taps, my appliances, the top of my fish tank (nowhere near where it can get into the fish tank water) and I have used this on every single surface in my kitchen. I've used this to wipe the grout in my kitchen, with pretty good results, and I've used it to clean the frame of my windows.

          This kitchen spray has a slight chemical smell to it, like lots of kitchen cleaners, with a citrus edge. It isn't overpowering at all, and the chemical smell doesn't bother me too much like other cleaners can.

          Overall I must say that I find the cleaning power of this to be surprisingly high quality, for the price. This works out and around 10p per 100ml which is fantastic value for money. A bottle of this cleaner usually lasts me at least a month, with daily usage, and I have found that it works well on most stubborn stains and marks. It is also ideal for cleaning up fresh spills as it helps me know that my kitchen surfaces are clean after I use it. I like knowing that I can use this to wipe my sides down, both before and after food preparation, to ensure that my surfaces are clean and hygienic. When I ran out of oven cleaner recently, and had a spill in my oven, I sprayed some of this on, left it for ten minutes, then I used a plastic scraper to remove the dirt, which lifted in just seconds, and then I wiped it clean with a cloth, this cleaner helped to remove the baked on dirt and made the task of cleaning my oven much easier. When it comes to cleaning my hob I spray this on, then I use a J-cloth or sponge to wipe it off and with a few seconds elbow grease I am able to remove even the most stubborn marks. I sometimes use this spray with a Dettol surface wipe, just to give me a bit of scrubbing power, and that combination works very well and gets my stainless steel hob sparkling again in next to no time.

          I feel happy with the quality of this kitchen cleaner. I do use Dettol surface wipes, for convenience, during certain cleaning tasks, but I use this at least daily in my kitchen and I love knowing that I can wipe surfaces down with ease, to ensure that they are free of dirt. The price of this spray is very reasonable, and usually much cheaper than any other brands available. I will definitely continue to use this Daisy kitchen cleaner in the future and just hope that the next time I am in store they actually have some stock! It isn't suitable for every surface, but what is, and it doesn't always lift all baked on dirt but leaving it to rest for a little while can be great. This is definitely worthy of a 4/5 from me, with a fantastic price and great cleaning power.

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          • Bad Teacher (DVD) / DVD / 54 Readings / 53 Ratings
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            05.01.2014 23:33
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            An average film starring Cameron Diaz & Justin Timberlake.

            Cameron Diaz plays Elizabeth Halsey, a teacher at the John Adams Middle School. Elizabeth Halsey couldn't hate her job much more than she does, if she had the effort to try, and boy does it show. Elizabeth is lazy, unprepared, demotivated and generally just hates children. She is a gold digging drug taker who is concerned only with earning money and improving her status in the World. Elizabeth does not like to engage with colleagues or children but after she finds her personal situation changing Elizabeth is forced to continue down the path of a career as a teacher. 'Bad Teacher' centres around Elizabeth, her money grabbing ways and the different ways that she tries to skate by in life with the minimum amount of work. Elizabeth spends most of her time trying to find ways to pay for breast enlargement surgery, that she feels will enrich her life in ways that will lead to more money and a higher status ultimately. Elizabeth decides to try and bag a fellow teacher, who has money, and the film centres around her disgusting, rude, nasty actions and the things that she will do to get whatever she wants. Of course that isn't the whole film, as people around her try to change her and make her a better person.

            The characters in this film are interesting and of course Elizabeth (Cameron Diaz) is the main character. I love her bitchy, nasty side, and despite the fact that she is horrible there is just something likeable about her shallowness, probably because I know how the story pans out and I am rooting for her to become a nicer person.

            There are several famous faces in this film, including Justin Timberlake, and there is enough of a back story, without just centering on the character of Elizabeth, to keep me interested in the film and to keep the film running along nicely. This film has a short runtime of around 90 minutes which prevents me from getting bored while watching it and any longer would really be stretching out the storyline of this film.

            My particular favourite part of this film is the moment when Elizabeth finds out that she could earn herself a substantial bonus. She then starts to plot lots of ways to get what she wants and this brings a range of funny moments that are well worth watching, in particular a moment with a drink spiking that just makes me laugh every time I see it, despite the overall nature of the moment being so wrong!

            This film really is a film that I would rate 3/5 stars, for the average performances, but yet I find myself watching it at least once a year now, sometimes on LoveFilm, and I also own it on DVD which I picked up for £1.27 used on Amazon. There are lots of predictable bits about this film, particularly the end, but this doesn't stop me from enjoying a bit of an average film at least once a year. I am sure that I will watch it again and while it isn't one of my favourite films, far from it, when I want a film to run in the background while I am doing things this is ideal as I can just dip in and out whenever I want.

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              05.01.2014 00:38
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              A hanging scratch pad is a great idea for active cats and one that works very well in our home.

              We have two cats, one of whom does not have a very active lifestyle due to heart problems, and because of this I am always looking for new ways to entertain my cats, particularly my older one, without them having to go too far away from wherever they may be in our home at the time. This hanging scratching pad was actually purchased for me by my Mum, for £3, from Pets at Home, and she thought it might be ideal to entertain the cats.

              This scratching pad is 11cm wide and 41cm long so it is a generous enough length to hang from any door handle to allow adult cats to reach it comfortably. This is basically a threaded piece of carpet which has a loop that I can hang around any door handle in my home. This is then there for my cats to scratch so that they can hopefully leave my sofas, soft furnishings and the corners of beds in my home alone. My particular piece of 'carpet' is a greyish colour and blends in nicely with the colours of my lounge but I've seen lots of different, sometimes hideous ones in store at Pets at Home so there should be one to blend in at least slightly with most decors.

              Initially this scratching pad was left on one of the doors in our hallway, so the cats might find it when wandering around looking for something to do, but I found that it kept getting knocked off and brought through into the lounge. Eventually I started hanging it on a door in the kitchen and this has been the place it has stayed for at least the last month or so, which must mean the cats are happy to have it there.

              I see my cats scratching this hanging pad at least once a day, which is great, and often more. My eldest cat seems to love stretching herself right up to the top to really flex her muscles and give her nails a workout. My youngest cat, who is a year old, uses this also, despite having three different towers and several stand alone scratching posts to choose from too.

              This really is the sort of item that anyone could knock together with some carpet offcuts but my Mum bought me this so I can't complain really. My cats seem to like it, and they use it daily at least, so that is a huge plus point as it definitely helps to save my furniture from getting scratched. Since adding this scratching pad, another tower and a stand alone scratching post I have been able to almost completely stop both my cats from scratching any furniture, including my new sofas. This alone makes this worthy of a purchase in my opinion but because it is just effectively a piece of carpet, with some cord through it, I am rating it 4/5. I would still recommend something like this but perhaps just make one yourself from some old carpet or an offcut. I expect even a carpet shop would sell you a tiny scrap of carpet for less than £3 so really I am rating this product up but suggesting a homemade version!

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                31.12.2013 00:47
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                Overall a bit of a disappointment and only worth 2 stars as my hair is clean but dull and frizzy.

                I have wavy hair that usually drives me to distraction. Like many women I am always looking for new shampoo and conditioner products, often that come with claims of smooth, sleek hair or the perfect bouncy curls, most of which they fail to live up to. I actually chose this shampoo at 3am when tired, ratty and looking for something nice to shower with when I drove home from shopping. Trust Tesco to allow an impulse purchase in almost any category these days! I typically style my hair with GHD straighteners and a GHD air hairdryer which allows me to have fairly smooth, sleek hair with about 20-25 minutes work each time I wash my hair. Sometimes this is not practical and as I am frequently unwell I like to have the opportunity to just wash my hair and allow it to dry naturally while I am doing jobs around my home or even just enjoying time at home with my family.

                This shampoo comes in a sleek flip top bottle. The bottle is functional, stylish and simple to open and close. The bottle is soft plastic which allows me to squeeze the bottle to release shampoo as required. The shimmery pearl coloured shampoo has a lovely colour and finish to me, that made me feel confident that it would be delightful to use. I apply this shampoo to my wet hair, as with most shampoo, and then rub it around to create a lather. The scent of the shampoo is one that is fresh and clean, there is no obvious fruit scent but the clean scent is lovely anyway, not offensive at all. The scent is not overly powerful and I do not notice it lasting on my hair for a long time afterwards either, but this is fine for me as I wear perfume daily anyway so I'm not too bothered about long lasting freshness, as long as my hair doesn't end up stinking, which it hasn't since using this.

                When using this shampoo I have noticed that quite a large amount is required, more than with most shampoos, and the lather produced is not rich or thick which is a real disappointment. I feel like I struggle to cover all of my hair and work the lather through when using this shampoo and on more than one occasion after leaving the shampoo for a minute or two I have found myself wondering if I have actually applied shampoo. Obviously this is a big downside and this is only part of the disappointment that this shampoo has provided for me.

                The first time I used this shampoo, about 4 or 5 weeks ago, I was very pleased with the results. I did not necessarily notice that my hair was much shinier, sleeker or straighter than usual but it certainly wasn't problem hair either which was great. This changed very quickly and within just a few washes my hair started to get frizzy and much less manageable. I didn't initially notice this, as I was unwell for a few weeks with measles, and so my hair was really the least of my problems. Around two weeks ago I started to notice that my hair was very frizzy and then when a friend commented on it I started to wonder and realised that the only thing that had changed was my shampoo and conditioner. My hair has become dry, dull, lifeless, limp, frizzy and generally just looks bigger and more wild than normal. This means that my hair is becoming more and more damaged as I fight to tame it and to get a brush through the top part of my hair in particular. The only part of my hair that it has improved are the short wispy hairs that grow around my crown area, but then these wouldn't be noticeable anyway given the state of my hair overall.

                Overall this shampoo was incredibly disappointing. The smell was nice, and it did seem to clean my hair, but that is where the plus points end for me. My hair felt dry, limp, frizzy and generally just looked the worst I have seen it look in years. I've never really thought about just how badly a shampoo can affect your hair as I am usually focusing on the positives to be gained from good shampoos. I would not recommend this shampoo and I will definitely not be finishing the bottle. My hair looks horrible, the worst I may have ever seen it considering it has been washed and conditioned! I will rate this 2/5, only because the shampoo did make my hair look clean at least and it was simple to use with good packaging.

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                13.11.2013 15:25
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                A fantastic primer from Bare Minerals.

                I have been using primer underneath my foundation since I had my makeup done for my wedding a couple of years ago. Prior to this I did not see the appeal of primer but now I know that this gives a fantastic base to my skin and helps my makeup look and feel better on my skin, regardless of the brand that I use. I received this primer, free, in a gift set that my Mum purchased for me. The usual retail price of a 30ml bottle is £21.00 with free delivery often available when purchasing a certain amount of products from the Bare Minerals website, currently this is on spends of £35 or more.

                Prime Time is a Foundation Primer from the Bare Minerals brand and as such I use this underneath Bare Minerals products such as foundation, mineral veil and warmth. This primer is applied directly to bare skin, usually I have washed my face about 10 or 15 minutes before when getting myself ready for the day. I use a pea sized amount of this primer and I dab it and rub in circles around my cheeks, chin, forehead and around my mouth. These are my problem skin areas with a few spots here and there sometimes and occasionally flaky, dry skin around my cheek area during the colder months. This is a gel but as soon as it hits my fingers I can feel the matte effect that this is going to have on my skin and once I've applied the gel, which takes well under a minute, my fingertips feel dry and smooth. This applies very well on my skin and a little goes a long way on my skin.

                The packaging of this primer is different, dependant on the size, with the 15ml 'trial' size that comes in a bottle with a screw top lid and the 30ml comes in a bottle with a pump action dispenser. I am currently using the screw top lid, which is more functional I believe, as I can just remove the lid and gently squeeze the tiniest pea size of primer out. I would say that the 15ml bottle lasts me at least 6-8 weeks each time, sometimes more, because of the tiny amount that I need to use on my problem areas. I do not always have to use this, it just depends on my skin, but I would say that I use this for at least 10 or 15 days out of every month as I have a low immune system and at times my skin suffers too. I have a few pores that are problematic on my nose and this primer covers them and leaves my skin feeling soft and smooth all over.

                When it comes to applying foundation on top of this I typically am using the Bare Minerals foundation which goes on with a large brush. This foundation applies smoothly to my face and I do not feel that my skin is clogged or weighed down at all like I do with liquid foundation. My foundation goes evenly on my face and there are no areas where I can notice my problem skin after using this primer and applying foundation, which is fantastic. My skin tone looks even and smooth and I have had several comments recently about my skin and how great I look when I am not wearing makeup, which is always a sign of natural makeup to me.

                Overall it is fair to say that I am very pleased with this primer. It is expensive, compared to other brands, but it lasts well, covers my uneven and problem skin tone, and a little goes a long way. It does not appear to have caused any breakouts on my skin, and I've had less skin problems since I switched to this primer, which is another plus point. I feel that this really is worth the price and I will definitely continue to use this primer. In the past I have changed products, dependant on my budget, but I have learned that often you get what you pay for with skincare and this is one of those products that proves that for me. My skin looks flawless and even when I am suffering from a breakout my skin is protected and looks great. This is quick and simple to apply and it helps my foundation stay on and look great for the whole day, from morning until late at night, without the need to reapply.

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                  01.11.2013 22:44
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                  A disappointing bag of cat litter from Tesco.

                  I usually order Pettex Pampuss cat litter, in 30 litre bags, from Amazon, to avoid running out. Recently my husband and I were going to be away for a few days, unexpectedly, and my monthly subscribe & save order hadn't arrived. As we had friends looking after our pets I wanted to ensure that we had stocked up on all possible items that they could need and so I picked up this Tesco low dust cat litter as a last minute purchase 'just in case'. This wasn't needed while we were away but I don't like waste so I have been using this for the past week or so.

                  A 10 litre bag of this costs £3.18 and the 30 litre bag that I usually buy, which is a wood based litter and in my opinion a much superior product, is around £10.00 with subscribe and save making it just a fraction more per 10 litres. My usual litter stretches much further than this litter too so in terms of price I consider this to be quite expensive, particularly as it is just a supermarket branded product not a more expensive brand.

                  This litter has a browny orange colour to it and it has a very grainy texture. This litter is lightweight, thanks to the grains being so small, and this does help to cut down on the dust that flies when pouring this, which is handy. I have two litter trays to fill up each time I change the litter and so cutting back on the potentially coughing fit inducing dust is great for me. There is still some dust when pouring this litter but I usually scoop the litter from the bag anyway, to try and avoid spillage on my floors. The litter does look very fine and has a light feel to it if I scoop it out of the bag. The handle on this bag is incredibly strong and has held up fine to being lifted into and out of my storage unit where I keep all of my cat litter.

                  When this litter is in use it does not last long at all, even with two litter trays in my home. I am very sensitive to smells and within around 1 and a half days I can notice the smell of old urine. I use a litter locker, to remove solid mess from my litter trays on a daily basis, and even with this being done twice in the 1 and a half days I can still smell urine and that nasty smell of dirty litter. I find that with my normal wood based litter, and the same amount of regular scooping, that I only need to change the litter every 4 or 5 days. I did take out the bulk of the litter that had soaked up urine and top up the trays but after 3 days in total a complete change was needed, and this was with me using a little more litter than I normally would when topping up.

                  As with most litter there is some mess outside of the litter trays each day and I did find this harder to keep on top of than with the wood based litter, which are in much larger chunks. I found that I vacuumed, say in the morning, and by the afternoon I would notice grains of litter under my feet and on my rug in the living room too, not something I am happy with at all. I do find that this happens with all litter but because of the small grains it was harder to see at a glance, if I wanted to vacuum just a few spots, and this is a negative for me.

                  Overall I am not very pleased with this litter at all. It is a different type of litter to that which I normally use but even forgetting that for a moment this litter does not absorb smells well, is messy, still produces dust, is quite expensive for the quality of it and overall I am just very disappointed with this. I would not buy this again, if I was caught short, and would rather buy the overpriced Catsan over this. My cats did use this litter, as normal, but after just 2 days I found that they would be a little hesitant around the doors when going into the litter tray and this is always an indication to me that the enclosed hooded trays need emptying and rinsing as soon as possible. I will definitely not buy this again, as I said, and I wouldn't recommend it either, hence my 1/5 star rating.

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                  31.10.2013 09:33
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                  Bargain sisal mice from Pets at Home.

                  I have cats and kittens living in my home, 2 at present, and as such my home is filled with toys. I have cat towers with cubby holes in the bottom that I can fill up with toys and I like to have lots of choice so that I can choose something different everyday. I feel that using different toys keeps things fresh for my cats, who don't go outside often, and prevent boredom from setting in.

                  Pets At Home usually have a variety of treats and toys on a 4 for £3 offer throughout the year and this was when I picked up these Sisal mice, along with other products. I picked up two, and two bouncy balls, last year for for just 75p each these are an absolute bargain.

                  These mice are about 2-3 inches in length, made of plastic and wrapped with twine. There are several different colours available in store at Pets at Home and we have an off white and a purple in our house. The mice have little tails, ears, whiskers and black eyes to give them a sweet amount of detail and overall they look quite inoffensive as cat toys go.

                  My cats, particularly my eldest cat, absolutely love these mice. I often find them dotted all around the house and by simply rattling one, causing it to emit a little shaking bead banging noise I can get my eldest cat to come and investigate. This toy is very simple to use and I can either just throw this across the room, causing whichever cat is in the room, or near the room, to run after it, or I can use the tail to drag this around on the floor. I have to sit down on the floor, or crouch down very low, but this is simple enough to do and my cats love the thrill of trying to catch the mouse without hurting me. On occasion my cats will have one of their crazy half hours and I will hear one of these mice getting thrown around behind the sofa or even in the kitchen depending on where they are. The noise that is makes is quite yet noticeable to my cats and they seem to enjoy it with both cats frequently rolling around on the floor playing with one of these mice, throwing them around, getting them hooked on their claws and generally just being very mischievous.

                  We have had our mice for almost a year now and they've received quite a lot of abuse. There is some sign of wear, with a lot of the sisal starting to come unravelled now. This doesn't seem to break off easily and instead it has just unravelled gradually without leaving too much mess during its destruction. This is another plus point for me as I already hoover on a daily basis thanks to my various pets and their mess and I don't really need any excess play related mess. The ears, whiskers and eyes of our two mice have not fared well with both of them having at least one eye and one ear missing plus a very thin amount of whiskers. I believe I've found all of these loose items when running the hoover over so I guess they are not attractive items to eat to my cats, although that doesn't always stop them from eating things.

                  In all it is fair to say that I am a big fan of these sisal mice. They can usually be found in store, not online, at Pets at Home stores and they often come in a large bin around the same area where treats and other toys can be found. There are multiple colours in the bins and there are colours suitable for male and female cats, should you want to pick a colour based on the typical gender suitable colours. I would definitely buy these again, particularly when the regular offer makes them just 75p each. My cats have had lots of entertainment from these, despite having much more expensive toys, and this makes them worth 5/5 to me.

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                    29.10.2013 11:40
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                    A fantastic slow cooker from Tesco.

                    Recently my slow cooker was broken by my husband and my lovely Mum dug me out her slow cooker, still in its box and barely used, and promptly gave it to me. A slow cooker is something that we use regularly in my home, particularly during the Winter months, because it allows meals to be cooked easily and using it means that there is a hot meal waiting when my husband wakes up from night shifts or I come home in the evening.

                    This slow cooker is a 3.3L one with three settings, low, high and warm. It weighs just over 4kg and it is light enough for me to lift off the bottom shelf of a cupboard in my kitchen with ease. This slow cooker has a metal body, with non slip feet and the knob for setting control, a black dishwasher safe pot that sits inside the body, and holds the food you are cooking, and a glass lid, with a knob on the top. It is simple to put this slow cooker together and it takes me just a few seconds after I have cleaned it to put it back together and get it put back in the cupboard.

                    Using this slow cooker is incredibly simple. I literally plug it in, turn it on and then select either low or high. I typically use low for recipes that I am leaving while in bed, say from 6am - 2pm, and high for recipes that I am cooking from say 4pm - 8pm. We have an unusual sleep pattern in my household, due to my husband working varied shifts, and as such the slow cooker is fantastic for us. If my husband is on nights we can place this on at 6am, when he comes home, and leave it until we wake up in the afternoon to allow us to have a small 'breakfast' and then eat this at about 4pm. Usually if I wake up around 2pm I will leave what I am cooking on low but just check on it, then when it comes to about 15 minutes before serving I turn it on to warm just to allow me to make any last minute preparations or additions that I need to make, without any additional cooking taking place.

                    I cook a variety of meals in this slow cooker. Examples include chillis, bolognese, stews, casseroles, soups and I have even made a roast chicken in this. Typically I use frozen or tinned vegetables, for convenience, and I do not brown any of the meat that I place into this first. I only fill any liquids to just above any ingredients because evaporation doesn't occur in my slow cooker, due to the lower temperatures compared with oven cooking, and so I don't want too much excess liquid, well, depending on what I am cooking. I sometimes use cornflour, right at the end, to thicken up sauces if required, but overall by ensuring my sauce is the right consistency before I start cooking I am able to produce dinners that are ready to serve up whenever we want them. My cooking time is usually somewhere between 4 and 8 hours, with quicker cooks usually being on high and longer, slower cooks being on the low temperature.

                    This slow cooker is absolutely fantastic. The retail price for this is between £10 and £20 depending on special offers and I would say that at £20 this is still a fantastic price. Our slow cooker gets used at least once a week, sometimes more, and I can comfortably feed four adults with the food that I make in this slow cooker. If it is just my husband and I eating then I know that I am able to freeze two portions of whatever we are eating for a quick and convenient 'ready meal' on another day. The food that I cook in this is delicious generally and I can use cheaper cuts of meat and smaller amounts of meat as the meat melts in the mouth and when I use chicken, say breast for example, it is tender and very simple to shred. This tends to allow me to stretch it a little further and so I save money using the slow cooker too. Vegetables are usually soft in the slow cooker and when I add potatoes to my stews they have a slight firmness to them still after 4-6 hours on high, but not enough to put me off eating them as I am fussy with hard potatoes. There is no burning or sticking when using this slow cooker which makes it fantastic if I am out for the day. I love knowing that I can come home and have a delicious, home cooked meal, ready to serve up to my husband and I. This is so simple to clean, I dish my food up straight from it and the after dinner I put the pot into the sink to soak with boiling, soapy water and I put the unit away while I wait for the pot to dry naturally. The pot is a little heavy when washing but I usually place this in an empty sink so I can wash it without picking it up until the final rinse. 5/5 from me and a slow cooker I firmly recommend.

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                    • Brabantia 30L Touch Bin / Bin / 62 Readings / 61 Ratings
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                      27.10.2013 02:33
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                      Brabantia offer a quality bin, as always.

                      I like my home to look stylish, where possible, and after having to dispose of several rusty/damaged bins in the last few years I decided to spend a large amount of money, almost £60, buying this Brabantia waste touch bin, which holds 30L of rubbish. The RRP of this bin is around the £100 mark but it can frequently be purchased for between £50 and £60 from Amazon, which is still expensive but for a high quality product, with a 10 year guarantee, this really is worth every penny.

                      My bin is matt steel and has black touches around the rim of the lid and the lid itself is black plastic. There is also a black plastic rim on the bottom of the bin to protect my floors. I like the matt finish to this bin, as it means that any scratch marks from my cats would be well concealed and it doesn't show up any other marks easily either. This bin has a soft touch lid which requires minimal effort to open and opens and closes silently which is nice too. The lid is hinged and this works smoothly and with no sound at all. The entire lid area can be removed, for cleaning, and for changing the bag, and it is simple to remove with minimal effort required. Once the top is back in place it is sturdy and will not fall off which is great too. The lid works very well at keeping smells within the bin, even if it is full to the top. This bin is lightweight, but not so light that it can tip over if my cats crash into it, which they do frequently, so this is another plus point for me.

                      Changing the bag in this bin is simple as the bucket inside, which is plastic, has a metal handle and is simple to remove. The bucket is lightweight so this doesn't hinder me at all when it comes to removing the bucket, whether empty or full. I use the Brabantia bin liners, size G, which have handles on them and specifically designed for this litre of bin, so I just tie up the handles and remove the bag. The removeable bucket is simple to clean, as it is plastic, and I use either Dettol wipes or anti-bacterial spray and a J cloth to clean it.

                      I love the look of this bin. It is stylish, simple to clean, has a guarantee from Brabantia that they will replace parts if they break, it does not show up fingerprints, it is quiet to open and close and even the little members of my family are able to open this bin. The lid is simple to open, with just one press, and it stays open until I press it back down again, ideal when I am scrapping peelings or rubbish in to the bin from a chopping board or plate. There are no scratches on my bin, even after being knocked over once when it was being cleaned. The removable bin insert is functional as I can remove this plastic insert and then rinse it out if need be before leaving it to dry, it has ventilation holes that prevent a vacuum from occurring and this means that the bags are always simple to remove, no matter what I have crammed inside. This bin is thin and compact, cylinder in shape, and it sits nicely in a corner of my kitchen without taking up too much room.

                      I personally have never had to speak to Brabantia for spare parts, yet, but my Mum broke the lid on her bin and they sent her another one completely free of charge. Brabantia have fantastic customer service and they are a brand that I am happy to spend large amounts of money with, well, large amounts for a kitchen bin anyway!

                      I would definitely recommend this bin and I rate it 5/5. It is simple to use, open, close and empty, and best of all it looks stylish in my kitchen without standing out too much. If I had reason to buy another kitchen bin in the future it would definitely be a Brabantia but I feel happy that mine will last me for several years at least, which makes it great value for money.

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                        22.10.2013 22:13
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                        A decent film starring Ryan Reynolds and Tara Reid.

                        Van Wilder (Ryan Reynolds) is the most popular person attending his college, so popular that he has deliberately sabotaged his graduation attempts in order to stay at the college for SEVEN years! When Van's father 'cuts him off' he is left fighting to pay his college tuition, in a variety of hilarious situations, and further chaos is thrown in the mix when he meets Gwen Pearson (Tara Reid) who is writing a piece on Van for the local college newspaper.

                        This film is a typical comedy from 10 years ago whereby there are some of the recognisable actors from that time, such as Tara Reid and Ryan Reynolds, getting in to a variety of silly escapades in college or high school, despite being quite a few years past this age. I didn't let that distract me at all from this film and the characters felt believable, albeit a little over the top. Van is a funny, loveable character who underneath the bold, brashy exterior has a nice heart and Gwen is not the stuck up, uptight Daddy's girl that she is made out to be and instead has a fun, slightly wild side that is enjoyable to watch. There is enough nudity in this film, and stupid pranks, to keep males entertained when watching this film, and really it should appeal to most teenagers, even if it may give them a few stupid ideas themselves. There is one particularly disgusting seen, that causes me to gag every time I see it, but then that is probably to be expected in a film based around mainly male college students.

                        The acting in this film is quite believable, particularly the connection between Gwen and Ryan. I found lots to chuckle at, despite having seen this film a few times before, and really I just enjoyed watching this film. The characters do not feel wooden or overacted and it is just a light hearted comedy that gives out a few laughs here and there, ticks along nicely and is very simple to only half concentrate on without losing sense of the plot or what could be coming next. The storyline is a little predictable, as to be expected with comedy genres in the most part these days, but that does not stop the film from being enjoyable for me and I will definitely watch it again in the future I have no doubt about that.

                        I have seen this film before, more than once, and it is one of those feel good films that I probably watch every couple of years just because I know it is something easy that I am going to enjoy watching and that I can dip in and out of watching if need be. This was the perfect film for me to watch recently when suffering from a bout of illness. I wanted a film that was light hearted, funny and entertaining, and this one fit the bill. I am rating this film 4/5 because it is dated and a little over rated for the time it was filmed but I feel that Ryan Reynolds brings comedy to this film and Tara Reid is also a welcome addition. The cast overall has several actors that have now made it to the 'big time' and this made it more enjoyable for me as I was able to recognise more and more actors each time I have watched this film, for example Howard from The Big Bang Theory who has a brief appearance and Brooke from One Tree Hill who has the same. This made the film all the more enjoyable for me and really as long as you take this for what it is, a light hearted film about a typical college layabout son of a wealthy person then you should enjoy it too.

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                        • The Change-Up (DVD) / DVD / 55 Readings / 53 Ratings
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                          22.10.2013 04:58
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                          A fun, light hearted film starring Ryan Reynolds and Jason Bateman.

                          The Change Up stars Dave (Jason Bateman) and his best friend Mitch (Ryan Reynolds) and centers around their very different lifestyles. Dave is a workaholic, always striving to improve himself and make life better for his family, often while sacrificing time with his wife and three children. Mitch is a man who has never really grown out of his teenage wreckless phase, he shirks responsibility, flits from job to job and spends his time with a plethora of different women. Mitch and Dave are enjoying a rare night out drinking when they find themselves peeing in a fountain and in their drunken haze they both wish, at the same time, for one anothers lives. Cue the power cutting out all around them and them switching bodies and lives, while keeping their own minds. Mitch envies Dave, with his fantastic wife, children, home and great job and Dave envies Mitch with his carefree lifestyle where he has nothing and nobody to worry about. This film centers around what happens when they switch lives.

                          This film had me interested from the outset and while I can take time to get into films I was intrigued within a few minutes. Both Dave and Mitch are fantastic characters that I really enjoyed watching. I loved the appearance of Leslie Mann, who played Dave's wife Jamie, as she was fantastic, as ever, and brought another element of comedy to the role. She plays the role of overworked housewife fantastically and I genuinely believed the character that she was portraying. Dave and Mitch are very different characters, which is what made this film work for me, and both of them were characters that I found interesting and funny, in different ways. Mitch is someone who needs to work on his general manners, social skills and generally the way that he treats almost everyone while Dave is something of a pushover that lets his boss walks all over him and puts up with rubbish from people that he shouldn't. The trade off of their lives means that they ultimately bring something completely different to their work and personal lives, with hilarious consequences.

                          I loved the whole plot of this, even though it is one that has been overdone, and I felt that there were enough differences between Mitch and Dave to make this film enjoyable, albeit a little tired in places, specifically the actual switching of their lives. I would have perhaps liked to see more of a figurative switching, through some sort of bet or discussion, rather than actual switching, but then saying that I did watch the whole movie, without pausing it once, and I had a great time too. There were plenty of laughs throughout the plot, enough to move from each social or life scene with ease, and this made the film even more enjoyable for me. Obviously I knew what the ending of the film was going to be like, as this kind of film is usually very obvious, but I still thoroughly enjoyed it and loved watching the characters gain a newfound respect for each other, and the people in their respective lives.

                          I wasn't actually aware of a synopsis for this film before I chose to watch it and as I was feeling under the weather I based my decision to watch it on the front cover and the fact that Ryan Reynolds was in it (yum!). I realise that typically basing a film viewing on just one actor can lead to disastrous results but I have been unwell so I wasn't necessary too worried about the deep meaningful level of the film and just wanted something that was easy going and light hearted, which this was. Although there was a deeper meaning there about not being shallow, wanting what someone else has and generally just focusing on making your own life and situation work out better for you, well, that is what I took from this anyway, but then I am an emotional fool most of the time. A good, strong, solid watch and one that I would recommend to anyone who is looking for a light-hearted film with comedy moments, a little drama, some romance and a life affirming message or two, all while having a chuckle at some of the ridiculous escapades that ensued. I wouldn't give this film 5/5, just because the plot was a little predictable, but then again I would watch it again in the future, if I was having a nice lazy movie day.

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                            18.10.2013 07:57
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                            A fantastic turtle bank from Hagen.

                            Earlier this year I started keeping musk turtles for the first time. They were something of an impulse purchase by which I mean I only thought about them for a few weeks before making the purchase. I purchased my tank, accessories and turtles all from the same pet store in one afternoon and as such I bought lots of items, some which have turned out to be a bit gimmicky, just to ensure that I had everything that they could need when setting up their habitat for the first time.

                            This Hagen exo terra turtle bank island comes in three sizes; small, medium and large. My item is the small one, I believe, and the difference between the different sizes really is just a different surface area and a variable amount of magnets to hold it in place so this review should be relevant for all three of the sizes available. The size of the small is 16.6 x 12.4 x 3.3 cm, the medium is 29.8 x 17.8 x 5.4 cm and the large is 40.6 x 24.0 x 7.0 cm. I paid around £10 for the small, which is a pretty standard price, and I purchased a small because I have a floating island in my turtle tank in addition to this. The main reason that one might want to purchase a small bank is because of baby turtles or if this is going to be an additional item in a turtle tank, rather than the sole floating island.

                            The purpose of this turtle tank is to sit on the top of the water in my turtle tank, which is 50% full, and there is a ramp area that is submerged in the water, to allow my turtle to gain easy access to the top of the bank. The bank has two magnets that hold it in place but these are quite weak to allow the bank to move up and down slightly, with the level of the water, as required. My musk turtle, who lives alone due to being bullied by his previous tankmate, uses this bank several times a day, at least, and on occasion I will place food on the top of this to encourage him to visit this regularly, partly for exercise and partly for basking purposes. Basking, under a UVB lamp, is important for semi-aquatic animals to ensure that they are not submerged all of the time which can lead to health problems. I like my turtle to bask several times throughout the day, if possible, and by having a floating island and this turtle bank I am able to ensure that this is a reality and his shell has time to dry out frequently from the submersion.

                            My musk turtle is over six months old and could be even as much as a year old, and he seems to be able to get on to this turtle bank with minimal effort. It takes around 10 or 15 seconds on occasion for him to remove himself from the water but this is usually around the time that the turtle bank, and the tank itself, needs a thorough clean. The surface of this bank is numerous little ridged areas, to give a nice texture, and he seems to scurry up to the top of this with no problem at all. The incline is gradual and he is able to walk comfortably on this, from what I can tell.

                            Overall I really like this turtle bank. It automatically adjusts to the slightly varied water levels in my tank and the only time the magnets have come off the outside of the tank is when my cats have jumped up and knocked them down. Even with one magnet missing this bank did not start floating around the tank and that is fantastic, as I wouldn't want it to scare my turtle, who now lives alone and seems to be adjusting, finally, to not being bullied anymore. When this needs cleaning, usually after around 4-6 weeks, it starts to feel a little slimy and at the submerged ramp part it does collect debris from the turtle tank, as I would expect. I tend to clean this using warm running water and a soapy cloth, as I do most items that go in my turtle tank, and I just ensure that it is completely free of bubbles or cleaning products before putting it back in to my tank. My turtle seems to enjoy this bank and while he has two banks, and this is much smaller than the other one, he seems to spend quite a lot of time out on this one. This may be because it is in the corner of the tank that is nearest to where I tend to sit in the room the tank is in, or it may be that he really likes it, who knows, but ultimately my turtle enjoys using this, eats his food from it if I place it there, and he gets a nice amount of light and heat when sitting on this too, so in all a fantastic product and a great addition to any turtle tank.

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                              17.10.2013 02:44
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                              An average pair of wellington boots that started to crack after 12 months of occasional use.

                              I love footwear, all sorts really, heels, trainers, pumps, flats, wedges, platforms and almost anything else. I live close to a number of fields and a lovely river and my husband and I spend lots of time walking this area now, partly in a bid to lose weight and partly to enjoy some time together. My husband purchased me these Hunter Originals, in a size 8, to accommodate for the wellington socks that I usually wear, for around £50 from Amazon around a year ago.

                              These Hunter wellingtons, the Original ones, are knee-high and mine do indeed sit just below my knees. These wellingtons offer me waterproof protection and they ensure that no mud is flicked up the backs of my legs either, which is great. I tend to wear leggings or thin trousers tucked in to my wellington boots but I have been able to wear thicker, warmer trousers on occasion and these have placed over jeans too on occasion without too much of a squeeze. My legs fit comfortably in these wellington boots and they keep my feet and toes warm while I am out walking, whatever the weather.

                              My wellingtons are navy in colour, blue is my favourite colour, but they do come in a wide range of colours now with the prices for these colours usually differing greatly, although I am not sure why. The boots are made from rubber on the outside and have a latex dip to help keep them waterproof for longer. There is a sponge insole in the bottom of these and a Nylon lining too which is quick drying and these boots are designed to be unisex, although some of the colours of them may beg to differ! There is a little buckle on my wellingtons, which is purely for aesthetics on mine, but there are adjustable pairs that can be purchased.

                              These wellingtons are comfortable, fit me well, even with wellington socks and trousers or leggings tucked in to them. I have found these wellingtons soft to wear and they are sturdy when walking on small hills in my local area too. I feel that my feet are kept soft and protected when wearing these and they also have a nice sheen to them, even after a year of occasional weekend use. I have been using these boots for around a year and I have probably worn them something like 40 or 50 times during that year. I wore these every day for a week when in Center Parcs during Springtime and they held up well to the miles of walking that I did with no cracking or water leaking at all. I have noticed recently that there is a little cracking around the ankle area, towards the back of the boots, and only this week there has started to be a little bit of water leakage when wearing them on a dog walk, so I fear that they may be destined for the bin soon if I cannot find a way to stop this from happening.

                              Overall I would say that these boots are worth a 3/5 from me. They are fashionable (apparently!), they are watertight (for a certain amount of time), they are comfortable, sturdy and they are not too overpriced considering they are a branded product. I have read lots online about these boots recently and can see that the cracking and water leakage is a frequent problem, apparently since several years ago when the manufacturers made changes or moved to another country for their supplies, and this really puts me off buying another pair I have had cheap wellingtons, for around 1/4 of the price, that have held up for longer than these, despite getting more abuse and being shorter, so that is another reason for my average rating. I have enjoyed owning these wellingtons but I really want wellingtons that are completely waterproof, as this really is the purpose of wearing them for me, and that is the main reason why I feel my 3/5 star rating is correct.

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