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I had wanted a gazebo for a long time as I do a lot of craft fairs and wanted one I could use for setting up my stall out of doors and keep it sheltered. I was telling my Dad about it and he said he had one that my son in law had bought the year before last and had only used it once so said I could have it if I could work out how to fix it up so I brought it home and tried it out at our next fair.
The gazebo comes in a bag with a zipper and it had a green room with cream bits that come down the sides.. It is quite heavy to carry, I managed to lift it from the car to the place but would not have been able to carry it around for long. When you unzip the bag it has the gazebo all folded up inside which looks like a bag full of poles joined together with ziggy zag bits. You need two of you to set it up but it is quite easy once you get the knack of it. You have to pull it outwards and the leg bits straighten up as you pull it, then the roof comes outwards too and it starts to resemble a gazebo shape. Then you have to extend the legs to raise it up in the air, then lock all the corners into place and there is your gazebo all up and looking lovely. There are hooks on the canvas bits that hang down to cover the legs and you hook these into the holes in the sides at the bottom so they are taught. There are ropes that you can fit to the roof corners to peg it out around the edges but we have not used these, we have just knocked a tent peg into the hole in the bottom of each leg and hammered it straight into the ground through there seeing as how we only have it up for the day and then need to put it away again after.
The gazebo measures 3m square so is a good size. You can get sides to go on it which I intend to buy next year but for this year I have just used the gazebo as it is. Once it is up and assembled it is very sturdy and if you do need to move it about before attaching it to the ground you can maneuver it about until its in the right place.
The bit I thought was going to be the hardest bit of all was taking it down. The first time we did this we had four of us working together, one at each leg. You have to lower the roof down first then release the leg extension and get it to collapse inside itself, then you can just squash it all together until it is folded up. This first time one leg got a bit stuck and we did fret over it for a while wondering if we had broken something but managed to get it down ok after a wrangle. The next time there were just two of us doing it and we managed to get it down as easy as anything. The only thing you have to watch is that you don't catch your fingers in the contraption as it folds down as it flipping hurts!!
I would highly recommend one of these fold up gazebos, they are such a good invention and so easy to put up and down once you get used to it.
I was looking for some mousse for my hair that would give me some volume as I have had it cut short but not short enough to spike up so after blow drying it was going quite flat after a couple of hours. I looked around and found that Shockwaves did a volume mousse so thought I would try that out.
The first time I used it I squirted a ball of mousse in my hand that was about the size of a snooker ball and rubbed it in my hair. It smelled quite nice and rubbed in well buy my fingers did feel quite sticky after rubbing it in so I rinsed them off and got to blow drying my hair. I found it easy enough to get my hair going in the style I wanted and it seemed to stay in throughout the day but the only trouble was my hair was quite stuck together in places which meant I couldn't use a hair brush on it. This meant next morning I had to rinse it all out and start again so the next time I just used a very small squirt about a quarter the size I had used and tried to rub this amount mainly into the top part of my hair then gave it a good rub all over.
This time I managed to blow dry my hair nicely and it seemed to stay in longer than it had with no mousse, the hair did seem to have more volume and the best bit was it was not as sticky as it was before and I managed to get a brush in it. The next morning my hair style was still looking just about the same, may be a bit lopsided but after a quick brush and a little use of the straighteners it looked lovely again.
I would recommend this product if you have hair that need added volume but don't add too much. You can buy it in Superdrug for £1.99 and you get 200ml in the can.
I wanted a new mascara as my old one had disappeared into my teenage daughter's make up bag, not that I had hardly used it, may once if that. I have quite small eye lases so wanted something that would give me a good showing of eyelash, plus I wear glasses so need something good. Boots had their three for two offer on Rimmel products so I bought myself a new mascara from them.
I decided to go for the Extra Wow Lash one as thought the name said it all. It cost me £6.49 which coming in the three for two offer seemed a good price.
The brush that is on the applicator is a round brush that has a bit of a cone shape to the end of it so this makes it easy to apply to the ends of the eye where its sometimes hard do get to without the brush touching the skin around the eye. The brush was easy to twist round to get some mascara going on the lashes and you could see a difference straight away with my lashes looking nearly double the size they normally are.
Only trouble with this mascara though was that by the afternoon, I went to the bathroom and saw I had panda eyes, the mascara had smudged underneath my bottom lashes and looked quite a mess. I had to clean it off which was quite hard to do without making myself look a mess as I hadn't taken any make up out with me to reapply (put this down to lack of experience even at 54 years old lol). I was very disappointed as I thought this would be a good make and would stay on all day. I had been very careful not to rub my eyes or anything.
I don't think I would recommend this mascara unless you are constantly checking your appearance in a mirror and spot when it starts to smudge and can keep it under control. Or may be if you are just going out for an evening then it might last ok. Looks like I will have to find another one to try out.
I have not had hardly any eye brows for years, just a tiny line about one hairs width going across and they are quite sparse so I need to have an eyebrow pencil to draw in some brows. I had been using cheap pencil in a brown colour but it did look quite dark on my skin and late last year I dyed my hair a much lighter colour and the eyebrow just didn't look right any more so I had to look for another option.
I had another £5 off No7 voucher for Boots so had a look in there and they had some nice looking brow pencils and they had a colour called blonde so I thought I would try this as it isn't as dark as the brown one.
The one I got was called beautiful brows and it was £6.50 so after the voucher cost me £1.50. The pencil has a brush one end which is good if you have a nice set of eye brows but I don't hardly have any so I don't need to use this end at all. The other end is just a pencil that you can sharpen with a normal pencil sharpener although I do keep one specially for my eye make up.
The colour goes on well when I have applied moisturiser to my face. It won't go on if I haven't got the moisturiser on though, it just seems to rub my skin and nothing happens except my skin goes red and sore, but if I have plenty of moisturiser on then it goes on as easy as anything. It gives a nice thin line which you can thicken up if you want further along the brow and being such a light colour it looks a lot more natural than the other cheaper brown one ever did. It also matches my skin colour and new hair colour so I am really pleased with the look it gives. I would recommend this product.
My daughter bought me this eyeliner as I like to wear one but find it hard to get a nice line going. She got it for me in Wilkinson for £1.98 which is an excellent price.
The liner comes in a long tube that looks like a felt pen. When you take the lid off you get the end bit like a pen and its nice and pointy at the end. The tube is quite thin but easy to hold on to.
The tube says it is quick drying which is good so you don't have to hang about with your eyelids half shut looking stupid ha ha. The liner is quite easy to apply to the lids using this pen. I found it much easier than trying to use a brush which is what I have used before. I managed to get a nice thin line going across and close to my lashes too.
I left it for about 2 minutes and it seemed dry by then. It might have been dry sooner than that but I didn't want to try it and smudge it. After applying it looked nice and made my eyes stand out a lot more behind my glasses. I thought it made me look younger too but that might just be me.
I kept the liner on for most of the day and it seemed to stay on well, I didn't manage to smudge it at all and didn't have to reapply it and best of all, it didn't turn into panda eyes underneath my lids.
I would probably buy this again when I have used it all up as I really like the effect it gives and is so easy to use.
I have a lot of problems with my arms, shoulders and neck and have had operations on my arms and shoulders in the past so I find I have to have a lot of pillows under my head at night as I can't lay flat, I have to be raised up. I was finding it hard though to find a pillow that I could have on the top that would be comfortable as all the ones that were firm seemed hard and if I tried a soft one it wasn't giving me enough support.
We were out earlier in the year and I noticed the memory foam pillows that were around and wondered what they were like so when it was my birthday earlier this month my Dad said he would buy me one so I could see what it was like. He bought me one of these Memflex ones from Ebay. The price of the pillow was £25 but I thought if it was going to be comfortable then it would be worth every penny.
When the pillow came the first thing I noticed about it was the weight. It was very heavy up to a normal pillow and it seemed very firm. I was thinking, here we go again, another firm pillow that would be too hard and I would get a neck ache, but I thought I would give it a go. I could always use the filling for cushions if it wasn't any good for sleeping on.
That night I put a pillow case on it, that was quite hard to do as the pillow case was such a tight fit where the pillow is so fat. Once it was on it was plumping it up really big and I was having so many doubts but still wanted to give it a try. I usually have three pillows on the bed under my head and shoulders, one of them is normal and the other two are deep firm pillows but this one looked quite thick on its own so I took off the top firm pillow and put this one in its place. When I laid down I found it still too high so I took the next one off as well and then I just had the thinner pillow and the memory foam one. This was the perfect height for me and I couldn't believe how comfortable it was.
The pillow is so deceiving, once you put your head on it it feels incredibly soft and your head just sinks into the pillow and it feels wonderful. When you turn over the next bit of the pillow is fat and plump and you sink into that bit as well and the bit where your head was raises up again so you don't have to keep getting up to plump up the pillows in the night. Someone told me I might find the pillow hot under my head with it being foam but this did not happen, the pillow feels cool all the time.
I must say I am very pleased with the pillow, it is an excellent sleep aid for me and I have found I do not have any problems with pain in my shoulders or anything while trying to sleep. I just wish I had bought one ages ago when they first came out.
We had wanted a pressure washer for our garden for a long time as we have mainly paved areas which need a good clean what with the dog being out there. We saw the Karcher K2 Compact on Tesco Direct for £75 and thought it was a good price so bought one.
The pressure washer is the bright yellow you associate with Karcher washers. It is an upright machine and comes in pieces which you have to fit together. We found this not too much of a problem once we had looked at the instructions although I think they could have been a little bit clearer in places and the pictures a bit clearer too.
You get two lances to fit on the washer depending on what you are wanting it to wash. One is the lance and one is the dirt blaster lance. We just put the normal lance on for a start to see how it went. The water goes into the bit at the bottom and then there is a suction hose that comes out the side which you can put into a bowl of detergent if you want to, but we were just going to use the water as it was. The hose for spraying the water is 4m long and it has a gun fitted to the end where you attach the lance of your choice. You then press the trigger of the gun to fire the water.
We used this washer on the paving slabs that had been left out during the winter so some were covered with dried up green stuff. The washer got all the green off the slabs and left them looking like new again. I had never seen them so nice and bright for years. We also used the washer on the decking which also had some of the green stuff on it and it brought this up nice and clean again too ready to be re-oiled.
While we had it out we decided to give the wooden furniture a good going over and also the drains out in the garden. Everything came up nice a clean and we used less water than we would have with the normal hose as the Karcher is made to save water and says on the box that it uses less water than a normal hose.
When finished it was easy to put away as there is a cable tidy on the side where you can wind the cable away. The machine is quite lightweight too which is a blessing meaning I can carry it up from the cellar and use it myself without having to have a strong man about to do it for me.
I would say we are really pleased with out pressure washer. We have our water on a meter so we pay for what we use when we use it so this using less water than the hose and getting a better job done is really good.
I had been borrowing my daughter's hair drier for a while now as my old one was so bad it had no power to it and was taking ages to dry my hair so I asked my Other Half if he would get me one as an extra present for Christmas.
The one he bought me was the Babyliss Pro power 2100 watt hair drier. It was quite a big box so I thought it would be a big drier and I wasn't wrong, it was quite a size up to the ones I have been used to. My first thought was that I would struggle with it as I have bad arms and can't lift them up properly for blow drying my hair but once I tried it out I found it was not that much heavier than the one I had used before.
There are three setting on the drier plus a cool button on the opposite side so if you are feeling it burning you can press this and it cools it down right away. I have found that I like to use the drier on the highest setting as this dries my hair the quickest and so means I don't have to hold it up for so long.
There are two styling brushes that come with the drier, ones is really good for my hair, it is one of those round brushes with the bristles, not just firm plastic. I find this excellent in conjunction with the drier for getting my short hair to style how I want it and giving it lots of body. The other brush you get is a flat brush which is more suited for long straight hair. I would not use this on my own hair but it has come in handy when I have my grand daughter over as she has really long hair and this brush does her hair without it tangling up in the bristles. You also get a couple of rollers in the box but again I would not use these on my short hair but you never know, they might come in handy for my daughter one day. Another thing you get is the end bit that you stick on the end of the drier so it sends the hot air in the direction you want it to, this is long and flat and I have tried it out but can't get on with it, it was either burning my scalp or missing my hair altogether so I have taken it off and just us the hair drier on its own.
I would really recommend this hair drier, the price is good, it is just £18 to buy on Very web site, might be cheaper elsewhere. It is solid and made really well and does a brilliant job of drying your hair.
Also on Ciao under user Harveydog52
When I have blow dried my hair, it always looks a bit fly away. My hair is very wavy anyway so it is hard to keep it looking nice and neat with out bits flying out. My hairdresser suggested I buy some styling wax so I had a look round to see what was on offer. I didn't want to pay the earth so was looking for something not too expensive and found some by VO5 which is just called styling wax.
The pot of wax cost me £2.99 from Superdrug and it contains 75ml of wax.
I blow dried my hair in my normal style then got a tiny amount of wax on one finger tip and rubbed my hands together (I had seen my hairdresser doing this lol) then rubbed it through my hair especially on the side bits where they tend to stick out and on the fringe. I find it makes the fringe look more like separate hairs instead of being just a thick mass.
The wax doesn't have much of a smell to it, its just a very delicate smell which is very pleasant. I have found that my hair style stays in quite well and I don't have to reapply the wax every day, just when I first blow dry my hair. This has meant that the pot is lasting me ages. I have only got a slight dent in the top and I have been using it now for a good few weeks.
I would recommend this wax if you have a short style and it is very fly away and it really does tame it.
I bought this eyeliner to wear to a special party. the one I got is silver in colour but they had quite a few different colours on offer to choose from. I bought it in Wilkinson and it was £1.98 which is quite a reasonable price if it works.
The liner comes in a tube like a mascara. When you open the lid there is a long wand attached with a tiny brush like you get in a nail polish. The liner looks nice and sparkly on the brush.
As the brush is so thin, its very easy to get a nice line across your eyelid. You paint it on like you are doing a painting. I found it quite hard to get a steady hand to do it so got my daughter to paint it on for me. She was much better at it than I was and got a good even line matching on both eyes. It tells you to leave it to dry and it is fast drying so I left it a few minutes, may be three and touched it with my finger and it was dry.
I wore this for the rest of the day to try it out, it seemed to stay on quite well as long as I didn't forget it was there and go to rub my eye. I found putting a bit of mascara on my eyelids reminded me if I went to rub them as I could feel the mascara before rubbing the eyeliner off.
It looks quite nice, it doesn't look as sparkly on the lids as it did in the pot but does look metallic and that was the effect I wanted.
Not sure if I would bother buying one again as I don't usually wear this kind of thing but as its just for a special party it was worth the £1.98 and I am sure my daughter will take it off me after the big day.
I was fed up with buying the cheap paintbrushes from our town and then spending half the time picking out bristles from the paintwork so I decided to have a look on Amazon and see if there was anything on there I could get that was not too expensive seeing as I had some vouchers to use up.
I found this set of Harris Platinum brushes and they were priced at £5.65 which I thought was not a bad price and I had heard of Harris brushes before so thought I would give them a try.
The brushes had 5 in the set, the handles were a nice light brown wood and the bristles were a white/grey colour. There was one large brush, two middle sized and two smaller ones. The first thing I was looking at painting was my front door and I wanted to try to get a good finish to it so after preparing it I picked out the largest brush to use to cover the flat areas. The paint went on really nicely, the brushstrokes did not show up and I was getting a really good finish. There were no hairs coming out of the brush which was a lovely thing to see. The brush seemed to hold a nice lot of paint without it being drippy too so I didn't have to keep dipping so often.
The next thing I was painting was the window frame. I picked out the smallest brush for this and found it was just a good size to do down the sides of the window without the bristles splaying out and going over the brickwork or the glass. The brush held its shape really well so it was easy to get a nice straight line going down the edge too.
We had quite a bit more painting to do as we were decorating the whole outside of the house so we re-used the brushes without having to clean them so not sure how good they would have cleaned up. By the time we had finished doing the whole house we had used all the brushes for one thing or another and we through them out but I suppose if you wanted to you could clean them up if you have the patience and the right stuff for cleaning them but for the price I reckon they did a brilliant job anyway and would buy a new set if we need some more.
My Other Half works shifts and these include 12 hour night shifts so when he gets home at 8 in the morning all he wants to do it go to bed. The only trouble is that we live on a road that is not a main road but is well used with buses running past the house every ten minutes and a school just over the road so there is quite a bit of noise around while he is trying to sleep.
He decided to have a look in Boots for some earplugs and found these disposable Travel ones that were a reasonable price. They cost him £3.49 and you get three sets in there and he can use them more than once so last him a while.
The plugs are a pink colour and they feel like they are made from a firm foam. He said that once he has them in he can not hear the everyday noise from outside going on although he does hear if the dog barks at someone at the front door, but they are sufficient to allow him to get off to sleep with not much trouble. He is a good sleeper anyway and is always asleep about 5 minutes after his head touches the pillow.
Now, I have a different sleep problem. I am a very light sleeper and have big trouble getting off to sleep at night and then if I wake up in the night I can't get back off to sleep again. My Other Half is a very loud snorer and this doesn't help matters especially if he has had a drink the night before as he goes into such a deep sleep I can't wake him to stop him making a racket and I can't turn him over as he is too heavy so the other night I thought I would try some of his ear plugs and see if they helped me.
To be honest they were rubbish for me. For one thing they were quite large in size and they hurt my ears to get them in. I thought of trying to cut them up a bit with some scissors to trim them to a smaller size but I could still hear Other Half snoring through them as he was so close to me and he was going at it like one of those road diggers so I decided not to bother and came down and slept on the settee instead.
It says you can wear these earplugs for swimming as well to keep water out of your ears but I think you would need to have quite small ear holes to be able to wear them comfortably.
I think on the whole, if you are having trouble sleeping because of background noise like if you are working shifts then definitely give these a try and see if they suit your ears.
Our kitchen work surfaces are tiled and the grout in between the tiles is dark coloured but some of it was looking a bit ropey as it had been done for quite a few years so we decided to see if we could get some kind of paint to paint over the grout. We wanted something that would give a strong finish so that when we cleaned the work surface it didn't wash the paint off so we asked around and someone suggested we buy some enamel paint as that is quite hardwearing.
We went to B&Qs and found this paint by Japlac. It comes in two sizes of tins, one is 125ml and the other is 250ml. We bought the 125ml tin to try it out first. This cost us just £3.48. The tin is quite small but we thought if it didn't work then it wasn't worth paying out for more of it.
The paint is quite thick when you open the tin and it doesn't look like ordinary gloss paint, it has a shine to it and is sort of see through. We used a tiny brush with it which is the kind you would use for doing a painting. This helped us draw a thin line with the paint along the groove of the grout. The paint has quite a nice smell to it which is a bit strong but not too over powering. The paint feels quite thick on the brush and this meant that it was easy to pick up a good amount on the brush hairs and drag it through the groove.
The paint takes quite a long time to dry so we just did one work surface at a time and left it all day to dry off, then when it had dried completely it left a lovely dark black line over the grout which was very shiny and you could see through it sort of, its hard to explain, the finish wasn't solid like you get with normal gloss paint but more of a coloured glass type of finish. It looked very effective on the tiles and we were very pleased with the results.
The small tin we bought was enough to do all the grout in the kitchen as a little seemed to go a long way and we still have a bit left in the bottom of the tin in case we ever need to touch up somewhere. The brush washed out with a bit of white spirit and some kitchen towel and the hairs were left soft like new and didn't go hard so we can use the brush again.
I would recommend this paint if you can think of a good use for it. It seems to be very hard wearing, the kitchen worktops are washed down with a scouring sponge a few times a day and the paint has not come off the grout at all and the colour still looks nice even after a year or more.
Our outside walls needed a fresh coat of paint as we had not repainted them for a couple of years. We just have bricks on the front walls so we did not want a paint that was textured, just a good quality masonary paint so off we went to out local B&Q to see what we could find. We sort of knew what kind of colour we wanted, we wanted a light colour like a bit creamy but not too yellowy as out gloss paintwork is red and the yellow looks worse up against it. We saw the Sandtex paints and noticed that they did a range called Ultra Smooth and they had it in a colour called Oatmeal which looked nice and just about what we wanted so we decided to buy it. The tin is a large tin, it holds 10L of paint, and it was on sale for £34.08, this included an offer of 20% off so was saving us over £10. We thought this was a good price for a good make of paint so bought it.
The paint says that it has Microseal technology which was something we had not heard of but on reading more about it we found it meant that it has microporous and water beading technology which allows the painted surface to breather and lets moisture evaporate, but it is also waterproof so it stops water penetration at the same time.
The lid was quite hard to get off, which in a way was a good thing as it meant it was less likely to spill out whilst transporting it from the shop to home, but it did take a while to prise off the lid with a screwdriver. Once opened the paint looked a lovely colour in the tin, it was like looking at a pot of cream. It smelled nice too, I really like the smell of water based paints.
My Other Half was doing most of the painting as I can not climb up a ladder due to my disability in my arms, so we had bought a paint kettle that hooked onto the ladder so he would have his hands free whilst up it. The paint was easy to pour into the kettle, he had to lift the pot up to pour it out at first as it was too heavy for me to do. The paint was really thick and came out in a big lumpy blob, not runny at all. We just used the paint brush to help push the blob into the kettle and then to wipe away the rest of the paint that might have dripped down the side of the pot.
On trying to paint the wall, the paint was so easy to put on, being quite a smooth wall anyway, the wall had been painted before and it was already a creamy colour but a bit more yellowy so we could see where he was painting as it looked a lot lighter. The paint was going on over the top of the old paint really nicely and did not need more than the one coat. It was leaving a nice smooth finish too and you could not see the brush marks at all.
The paint did not take long to dry, by the time he had got to under the top window the bits at the top had already dried. The colour looked slightly lighter once it had dried which was a nice.
The 10L pot was more than enough to do our front of out terraced house and we had enough left over to paint the outside front walls too to match. The house looks really smart when you are coming up the road, the paintwork looks lovely and bright and you can see people looking at it as they walk past.
We are very pleased with the results of out paintwork and would highly recommend this paint if you want to decorate the outside of your house.
I was lucky enough to win one of these mascaras in an online competition the other week and it came on Saturday so I have been trying it out.
The mascara comes in a gorgeous silver coloured tube that feels really nice, it feels metallic and not plastic. It is quite heavy to hold and thinner than the latest mascara tubes which seem to be a bit more bulky lately.
The mascara I got sent is a black one and when you open it there is a nice brush on the end of the wand. You can not see any lumpy bits on the brush, it just looks nice and clear with lots of bristles on it which are quite firm to touch.
As you start to apply the mascara you find it goes on really easily, the wand it nice to hold and it is good to be able to touch the odd eye lash if you find you have missed one out without them clogging up with a big lump. My lashes looked nice and dark but looked very natural.
I put the mascara on in the morning and found that by the evening time it still looked nice, with no smudging underneath my eyes at all. My eyes felt good too, didn't feel tired or heavy with the mascara on.
The mascara was advertised as being on sale for £18 on the site when I went in for the competition but I think it is more likely to be found at around the £13 to £14 mark. I think I would buy this again at that price even though it's a bit dearer than my usual price range for make up. I really like the feel of it on my eyes and it looks nice.