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Moving to a fairly sunny flat with storage heaters we held of putting the heating on for as long as we could in order to save money. Little did we suspect at the time of the resultant problems. It wasn't until one day getting a book from the bookshelf and seeing it warped and mouldy that we realised something had to be done - quickly. As the dehumidifiers were pretty pricey for what is not much of a luxury good I didn't want to make a duff choice. In the end I plumped for the delonghi brad as overall it seemed to have got the most favourable reviews.
The quality of the air improved almost instantly. As per the instructions the dehumidifier was on constantly for about 2 weeks. It was really satisfying to see the water collecting. It filled up about 2 times per day at first. After that when things started to calm down and it filled up less quickly I turned down the dial until it turns itself off. Now it only comes on when needed. You can tell this is normally when cooking, when you there is washing around and at points throughout the night. Even during summer we leave it on to regulate the humidity.
It does make a noise, a low hum but that is easy to live with. It nothing more than the sound you get when heating turns itself on.
As the plastic tank where the water collects is on the front of the machine it is easy to see when this needs emptying. You can even do this when the machine is on - it pauses itself as the red light that comes on indicates.
It isn't easily portable so we have kept ours in the same place in the house. I was initially hoping to move it to the hall so it would help with the condensation in the bathroom but this is not possible with this model because of the room needed to the rear of the machine in order for it to ventilate. Also, whenever you move it you have to leave in unplugged for an hour.
The mould problems in our flat had got quite serious. With the addition of this machine I am confident that they are now over.
There is also a pipe which can be attached to self drain the tank if you are going away for long periods or have an unoccupied space, which is a really useful feature. Another feature is when the room is too cold for the self regulation to activate a light comes on to show this.
There are some features of this machine that are really useful, such as having a digital display which tells you how long the program has got left to run. It is slightly outfacing at first as there are so many programs to choose from but you can refer to the booklet which lists what to choose for what, we are still referring to ours and experimenting with different cycles, some of which take up to 4 hours. The fact that there is a cycle that you can do hand washing on is a plus, as is the express wash and dry which takes not much more than thirty minutes. Also you can pause the machine at any time, useful if you have a clothes item you know won't take kindly to being tumble dried and want to retrieve it after the wash cycle. I am still sceptical about how good tumble drying is for clothes, I have had the odd minor disaster with clothes running, not something that ever happened with my old basic washing machine and that I have put down to the high temperatures. Also fluff does seem to collect in the rubber ring easily. However, it makes towels really soft and fluffy compared to my old machine. Overall I am very happy with it and think it's a good value model.
The price of this product put me off initially (over £20 for a blusher) but having heard people rave about it in the end I bought one to try and I 'm glad I did, it has now become a must have item in my make up bag. I use it most days and have been using the same bottle for over two years and there is still about a tenth left so it's well worth the extra expense because a little goes a long way. This small bottle (12.5ml) contains a pinkie red dye. This is literally painted on with a little brush to the cheeks. The packaging recommends a few dots but I tend to smear a line of it on. Then you rub it in and it looks like you have a natural and subtle glow. It isn't obvious and doesn't have a sparkle which adds to the natural feel. The product can also be used on the lips which I never do but I 'm sure it works as well there too. At the airport recently I stocked another bottle and for a few extra pounds got an extra smaller version with a lip-gloss on one end which is good to keep in your handbag.
I had wanted to see this when it was at the cinema and never got change so eagerly awaited the DVD. Meryl Streep adds vitality and fun to any role and she was quirky as the original Julia Child. Her story was certainly the most interesting part of the film and relationship with her husband, which came to her late in life was touching.
This was definitely made more interesting by the fact that it was a true story as present day American Julie Powell took it upon herself to make every recipe in Julia Child's hefty cook book within the space of a year recording the results on a blog. In real life following on from the success of the blog, then book, the author has left her dull office job and become a journalist; I recently read her articles on infidelity in the Observer.
The parallels between the two characters, neither were accomplished cooks at the start of the film but learnt by trial, error and most of all determination was the heart of the story.
I have a purse full of advantage cards but it is the Boots one that was the first and gets utilised the most often. The staff in store always ask you if you have one when at the checkout which is useful if you are forgetful. Also they alert you to how many points you have accrued at the end of each transaction and it also shows on your till receipt. Also if you sign up to receive post from them they send regular tokens which can be used to receive extra Advantage card points or related offers on the products you buy most regularly. You can also put your advantage card into the computer machine in store and it brings up any special offers. Many products in store often attract special offers and recycling phones and printer cartridges can also get you points. Rather than accruing lots and lots of points I trade mine in quite regularly for a free meal deal (drink, sandwich or salad and snack for £3). It's nice to get a free lunch particularly when it's close to pay day.
I was leant this book and didn't have particularly high expectations for it having been told that it was an easy read and with a cover that didn't give much away. I spent much of the book wondering if the author was the wife of Ian Hislop, Have I Got News For You Panel lead. Well she is.
Books on war are not my thing so I was surprised myself how much I actually got from this book. For someone who doesn't know/ realise much about the Spanish Civil War it is a great way to learn about it without realising you are learning as there is lots of human interest, love, relationships and flamenco dancing to add spice. Although the flashback scenario of the narrator did seem a little contrived it did not spoil the book and you got lost in the story so much it was almost a shock when you were brought up to present day.
This book has prompted an interest for me in the Spanish Civil war, a fascinating period of history.
I would recommend this book, it would make a great holiday read if you were about to go to, have recently been to, or intend to visit Spain. I thoroughly enjoyed it and plan to read her first book The Island as I have heard it is even better.
Laura Ashley seems to have re-invented itself well. There sales are worth looking out for as there are some amazing discounts and they often have weekends with 20 - 25 % off certain products. Some of the furniture and décor is a bit chintzy for my taste but it is all very well made and they do lovely fabrics and wallpapers. Stores can be found in a variety of places from small stores within House of Fraser stores, independent stores in traditional towns such as York, to large out of town outlets where you can get the furniture they do. There accessories range is great, I have bought mats, storage jars and hooks all of which I have been pleased with. They also sell clothing which seems to have evolved from the flowery smocks to a range of high street smart but still trendy. They are all well made and quality products and staff always seem keen to help when in store. The website and catalogue are also well presented.
I find IKEA a great place to browse around and pick up low cost/ pretty good quality products.
The showrooms are great to browse around and give you a real feel for the furniture, you can also note down what aisle location items are in here, to pick up as flat pack in the self service section, and this is also the place to talk to staff if you have queries over a product. In the market place you can pick up the smaller items, kitchen ware, lights, rugs, plants before moving on to the warehouse area to pick up flat pack furniture items.
At the checkout the large blue plastic carrier bags with a yellow IKEA branded strap they sell at the checkout are particularly useful and cheaply priced. They come in handy for all kids of things (I store my decorating sheets in the large ones and I have seen people using the smaller ones as a handbag as it tucks nicely under the arm.
Beyond the till is a shop which sells traditional Swedish food and there is a very reasonably priced fast food counter.
IKEA can be a day full day out if you want it to be. The café fish and chips and the legendary meatballs and cranberry sauce and also offers free soft drink refills.
If you are purchasing furniture for delivery you need to physically buy it first then book it in at the delivery desk which is a bit annoying.