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Smirnoff Vodka is world famous brand of Vodka and by far my favourite. Some people say that they can't taste the difference between Vodka brands but I reckon I can and Smirnoff is my favourite with, for me, a slightly less punjant and perhaps milder flavour than other brands.
Last year I was in my local Scotmid when I cam across the Lime Vodka and thought it would be a nice change, I was not to be disappointed. I drank the Lime Vodka with Diet Coke and Ice and found it a really refreshing alternative to standard Vodka. It tastes quite strongly of lime and has a sharp, citrus flavour that is not however overpowering. I had 3 drinks and enjoyed them immensely but don't think I could have has anymore. For me this drink is something to have in small amounts as I think it would become slightly sickly despite being citrus after more than a few.
The vodka comes in a bottle exactly the same as standard Smirnoff Vodka but sports a lime coloured label instead of the traditional red. The bottle is 70cl and the alcohol content is 37.5%, that of standard Vodka. I paid £18 for my bottle and have seen it similarly priced in places such as Tesco and Asda.
Overall I found this a really nice product which was very pleasant to drink and far more pleasant than any other flavoured Vodka I have tasted before. I also think it makes a nice gift.
Irish Meadow is a liqueur made by Halewoods International Drinks Company, who are perhaps more commonly known for drinks such as Lambrini or Red Square.
Irish Meadow is a cream liqueur similar to those such as Baileys Irish Cream. In comparison to traditional cream liqueur it contains not just whiskey and cream but also wine, making it a far cheaper option. For me Irish Meadow is a cheap version of Baileys Irish Cream. You will find it in most supermarkets and local stores and it normally retails around £5.99. This is almost half the price of Baileys for, which I would normally pay around £12 a bottle.
Irish Meadow is a thin cream liqueur with a consistency maybe slightly thinner than that of single cream. On first taste I get the delicious creamy flavour with a strong kick of Whiskey, its not until I have swallowed that I get the more unusual taste of the wine. The wine aftertaste is not unpleasant, however, for me its just not as pleasant as one of just Whiskey.
I drink cream liqueurs on special occasions such as after dinner over the Christmas and New Year period. For this I would not purchase Irish Meadow as it just doesn't have the same luxurious effect as the ones without wine. I do however purchase Irish Meadow regularly for making cocktails at parties. As part of a cocktail or mixed short I simply cant taste the wine, just the creamy whiskey flavour. As a cocktail and short lover I think this is great value alternative as, mixed with other flavours you simply don't notice the wine aftertaste My favourite shot is a B52 consisting of Irish Meadow, Tia Maria and Sambuca.
Overall I think the drink is great value for money at around half the price of similar products, however for a treat I prefer cram liqueur without the wine.
Batiste Dry Shampoo is a product that has been around for many years but has massively increased in popularity in the last two years. The product comes in the form of a tin aerosol spray, similar to a can of hairspray. There are many varieties available such as original, brunette, cherry etc. The cherry differs to others only by its smell. It has a fruity cherry smell when spraying and the smell lingers mildly to hair. The product is aimed at freshening hair that needs a wash, its an alternative to washing and shampooing. Batiste is widely available in chemists, supermarkets etc but I find the Cherry a little more difficult to find. I purchase it in Tesco when available and it costs me £2.39.
To use, you simply spray onto the roots of your hair, or all over is desired. To me, the product is like a spray talum power. I leave the product on for a few seconds and then brush it through. The amount I need depends on how clean or dirty my hair is and also how long. i would say on average I get around 10 uses from one can. I have shoulder length hair at present and the roots of my hair can be very greasy.
One drawback I find is the colour of the product as its white and I have very dark hair, there is a brunette variety available but I prefer the smell of the cherry. I find I have to brush a lot to remove the white colour from my hair. I find the product superb from freshening hair when I'm in a rush or maybe oversleep for work. Even on really dirty hair the product makes it fresh and clean looking with a nice fruity smell.
I tend to use the product only when I'm in a rush and only when I'm tying my hair up to freshen the routes. I have used the product for an all over freshen when leaving my hair out but i find it leaves my hair with a very matt finish as opposed to a natural shine.
Overall I think this is a must for any girls beauty collection, perfect if you need to get out in a rush
I am a massive fan of all the John Freida Frizz Ease range and this is my favourite product in the range. I'm not a big hair product user but this one for me, coupled with the hair serum from the range, is an essential item. I have been using this product now for more than 10 years and have never found anything that compares. I have long dark hair that has a slight kink to it (not a curl) and a frizz to it, especially when subjected to moisture (rain/humidity/shower etc)
The conditioner comes in a top down, tube style silver bottle that is smart and effective, no spillages etc and you get every last drop out of the bottle. It is only available, as far as I am aware in one size which is 250ml and costs around £5 a bottle (I usually buy it in Boots) although you can pick up cheaper when on offer. The conditioner is white with a thick creamy consistency, it has nice smell which stays in your hair even after drying. The smell is difficult to describe but is pleasant and fresh.
I use the conditioner every second day, sometimes after using the matching shampoo and sometimes not, either way it works effectively. I find it best to smooth it onto the ends of my hair and leave it for a few seconds before working it through all the bottom of my hair. It rinses easily in a few minutes and doesn't leave any build up on my hair. It can be used on the roots but my preference is not too as I am prone to greasy hair. Once towelled dry I find my hair very easy to comb and much easier to blow dry than if I use any other conditioner. My hair always has a glossy shine and looks in good condition and less frizz than normal which I think is due to this product
This is a product I would highly recommend to anyone who has frizzy, curly or generally troublesome hair. It is a must for me.
Gourock Outdoor Pool has been a popular summer attraction all of my life and has actually been around for more than 100 years, celebrating its centenary year recently with a full refurbishment.
The pool, or rather pools (1 x small kids pool & 1 x large pool) are situation right on the waterfront next to the River Clyde and have spectacular views. The pools are fully heated and are filled with salt water as opposed to chlorine like most indoor pools. The pool was originally, and for many years, filled with sea water. The kids pool is shallow and suitable for kids of any age. The large pool has a shallow and deep end which I think is around 10ft deep at it's deepest point. The large pool sports two small diving boards which are very popular with the kids.
In addition to the two pools there is a large sun terrace area with loungers, a large spectating area, fully equipped changing rooms, a gym and a cafe. Due to the nature of the pool its opening in seasonal and closes for the winter months leaving only the gym open all year round.
I visited the pool with the kids in July this year, the first visit in a few years and the first time since it was refurbished. The changing rooms have been kitted out to a high standard and are very modern looking. One problem I found was the floor tiles as they were very slippy, not at all what I would expect from a pool. Rubber mats were placed everywhere to try and aid the problem, but weren't doing a great job. The standard of cleanliness was good but with the usual things you would expect from a pool busy with kids such as empty juice bottles left in cubicles etc. The pool itself was lovely and warm, much warmer than you would expect for being outside. I am not a fan of the salt water as it nips my eyes and goes up my nose, the kids however didn't seem to notice (must take my goggles next time!) Good fun was had by all splashing around and when finished we went to the cafe for snacks. The cafe was smart and very clean. We had juice and crisps, which were reasonably priced. We didnt use the gym but I did sneak a peak and it seemed well equipped.
I paid £3.30 to swim and it costs £2.80 for a child, however kids under 5 go free as do all children in school in Inverclyde and the over 60's. This for me, makes it a really good value trip. The pool is very well used by locals and tourists alike and there activities on during school holidays for kids such as water polo and activities throughout the season for the adults such as the midnight swims, which I think sounds fabulous. The pool is a five minute walk from Gourock train station and is on a main bus route. There is a small car park for the pool and a much larger public car park next to it.
Overall I think the pool is a great novelty day out for adults and kids alike. On a sunny day you could almost think you were abroad.
A few years ago my daughter began toilet training and I went to purchase all the necessary items, such as a potty, kids toilet seat, wipes etc., but it wasn't until she was ready to move from the potty to the toilet that I realised she couldn't get up unaided as she was too small. It was at this point I purchased the stool in Ikea. The stool was recommended by a fellow toilet trainer and at £2.50 I thought I would give it a try
The stool is recommended for kitchen/bathroom use but I have only ever used in the bathroom. It is shaped like a semi circle on the inside so it can fit closely to the toilet. It is white plastic and very easy to clean. I clean it daily with antibacterial spray and a cloth. The top of the stool has rubber circles that makes it totally non slip, even when wet. The underside of the stool has a rubber coating also which means it sticks to the floor and does not slide on tiles/hardfloors etc. I have found it very safe for kids to use.
Three years down the line and this stool is still in my bathroom. My daughter uses it at the sink as it is still a little out of her reach. I have occasional used it in the shower too for my daughter to sit on as my bath is a bit slippy. The stool is lightweight and can easily be taken on short breaks/holidays for kids to remain independant.
Overall this is a great value and great quality, very useful item. Well done Ikea. My only complaint/suggestion would be a variety of colours, as far as I am aware it is still only available in white
Jagermeister is an alcoholic drink available in 70cl bottles and is 30% alcohol. The bottle is green with a distinctive orange label sporting a stags head, which I think is a little unattractive. Jagermeister is classed as a liqueur and has been produced in Germany since around 1935. Made from a mixture of herbs Jeigermeiser is said to originally have been sold fro medicinal purposes similar to tonic wine.
My first and last experience of Jagermeister was at party last year. I was given a Jager bomb, which is simply a shot of Jagermeister dropped in a glass of red bull which should be knocked back in one. I had already had a few refreshments and knocked back my Jagerbomb without hesitation, all I tasted was the red bull with a slight aftertaste of liquorice. Feeling brave I then tried a straight shot of Jagermeister, this I did not like. It tasted like a combination of toothpaste, cough medicine and licorice only not that nice, an experience not to be repeated.
The drink is widely available in supermarkets and local stores and costs on average around £15 per bottle. It's stocked in my local Tesco and Coop for around this price. It is also widely available in pubs and clubs at around £3 a shot and more commonly around £5 as a Jager bomb
I have been told the drink is sometimes used as a digestif after meals but I think it would make my dinner come back up. I know someone also who uses it in a cocktail with Blue Curacao and Cranberry juice and swear it tastes yum, I have refused to taste.
Call me old fashioned but I think I will stick with the sambuca
The Battery Park in Greenock is situated just at the border between Greenock and Gourock and is directly on the waterfront. The parks facilities consist of two car parking areas, a skate park, astroturf pitches, a pavilion which houses a gym, cafe and toilets, large grass areas and two kids adventure parks.
The park is totally flat with good wide paved walkways & cycle paths making it disabled friendly and excellent for kids on their bikes/roller skates etc. The views from the park are totally stunning and on a sunny day its almost idyllic. The park is looked after by Inverclyde council and is impeccably maintained with neat grass and no litter. Dog walkers are aplenty in the park but you will never see any mess left behind as dog bins and litter bins are all round the park.
The gym is run by Inverclyde Leisure and although small is perfectly forms and it includes treadmills, cross trainers, bikes, rowers, weight machines and all the other items you would expect in a much larger gym. The staff are friendly and helpful and its clean and hygienic.
Sadly I've had some bad experiences with the cafe and find it very small and quite claustrophobic. Despite the menus you generally find the cafe sells only burgers and chips and you can have quite a wait. It tends to run out of ice cream on hot days and customer service is non existent. It is handy to pop in for a drink and a snack for the kids though.
The large kids play area is well used and loved by kids and has a base of sand which is always clean and litter free. The park includes climbing frames, slides, seesaws etc and my daughter can play happily there for hours. The only draw back for me is the two entrances/exits to the play area. I think its always safer with only one as then no young ones can wander out. The smaller park is also sand lined and includes swings, its generally quieter and used by toddlers.
The astroturf turf and changing facilities are again well maintained and well used by local teams. The skate park is a little tired but possibly due to be replaced soon, it is however very popular with young teens.
Overall the park is a great place to blow off the cobwebs, walk the dog, kick a ball around, go for a run or run around with the kids. Its maybe best to be avoided when the weather is very bad as being right at the water edge the wind tends to blow through you and the waves have been known to come crashing over the edge.
I purchased a grey pair of knitted boots in Shoe Zone in Glasgow in January this year for £10 for my six year old daughter. I had been looking for a pair of boots to match an outfit of my daughters but had struggled to find anything suitable. I stumbled upon the boots whilst shopping for slippers for my myself and they were exactly what I wanted. I would not normally purchase my daughters shoes from this store as I tend to stick with another shoe shop that I know to be of good quality and fitting etc. however on this occasion I decided to give the boots a try.
The boots are between ankle and calf width and are Ugg style with a knitted exterior and three large buttons. I found them to very stylish and at £10 a fantastic bargain. On first wearing the boots fitted my daughter very well and she advised they were very comfortable. After the boots had been worn a few times the problems started. The knitted exterior became shabby looking with catches in the wool and very dirty looking. I found it almost impossible to clean the woolly exterior and most of the dirt remained. My daughter started to walk out of the boots, almost as if they had stretched slightly after a few wearings, she began to complain they were now uncomfortable and they were no longer wearable. It was at this point I disposed of the boots in the recycling.
Overall I feel that I probably got what I paid for. I purchased a stylish but very cheap pair of boots that only lasted a few wearings. I think I was expecting high quality from a low priced item.
I first encountered crocs a few summers ago when I noticed all the kids locally seemed to be wearing them. I was a little confused as I found them very unattractive and seriously lacking style. After chatting with some friends I was advised that crocs were the latest trend and apparently very good for your feet and very comfortable. I still was not convinced and it wasn't until months later when my sister arrived sporting a pair that my mind was changed. I tried on her crocs and had a walk around in them, purely out of curiosity and was amazed at how comfortable they were. I decided to buy a pair for my upcoming holiday as I always suffer from sore feet whilst abroad in the heat and thought they would be good for around the hotel.
I purchased my first pair of crocs from a local independent shoe shop and they cost me £35 which I believe to be about average price, they were bright pink and traditional clog style. I wore my crocs everyday and every night on holiday, I was amazed at how comfortable they were and how good my feet felt, I wore them to the beach, to the restaurant and to the pub and have never looked back since. This was my first holiday without swollen red feet with blisters, Now every summer out come my crocs and they don't go away again until autumn.
Crocs are made from a very light weight material (sort of plastic) and have holes all over them allowing air to circulate around your feet keeping them cool. They are ideal for the beach as they can be worn in and out the water and simply dried off with a towel. They are easily cleaned with sop and water and mine have never marked. The soles have a fantastic grip on them which also makes them fab for around the swimming pool or walking on decking etc as you feel secure. I have only ever purchased the original clog style croc however I have been on the official website and you can buy winter crocs, croc wellies, croc boots etc.
I would not be without a pair of crocs in summer and especially for holidays but still think they are majorly lacking in street cred!
I recently visited Perth Leisure Pool with my six year old daughter whilst having a short break in the area. The pool, which originally opened in 1988, was situated on Glasgow Road which was fairly central and well signposted, making it easy to find.
My initial impression of the building was good, quite dated but well maintained, however I was very put off by the car parking. The car park was a two storey concrete affair (adjacent to the pool) which was badly lit, very damp and if I'm honest, a bit creepy. The complex itself consisted of a large laned swimming pool for the more serious swimmer, a jungle type activity pool for the tots, an outdoor pool, a wave area, small slides, a large jacuzzi area, large open swimming areas of varying depth, a lazy river and two large flumes (don't think I've missed anything) It seemed to me that everyone was catered for, with plenty of room for swimmers and plenty of room for kids to play.
The two flumes were great fun and well supervised by the staff. One flume was suitable for adults and children over five and the other was suitable for adults and children over 8, both were fast and fun!
The changing rooms were clean and tidy but badly in need of updating, The lockers were very small with lots not in working order, the changing cubicles too were very small and not accommodating for families with children. The shower area is at the pool side and only had 4 working showers which meant we had to queue to use them which I didn't think was great.
The overall cleanliness of the pools I found to be of a good standard although some areas looked a bit grubby as they were in need of a coat of paint/re-grouting etc.
There was a large cafe within the complex which overlooked the pools making it great for the kids, but very very hot! The cafe sold a wide variety of snacks such as soup and sandwiches, fruit, yoghurt's, crisps, sweets, hot & cold drinks, burgers, chips, toasties etc and the prices were reasonable. I was approx £10 for two toasties, two drinks and two cakes.
The pool was open 7 days from 10am and admission was £4.40 for an adult and £3.40 for a child with under 5's going free, although there were a variety of offers available.
Overall we had great fun in the pool and a pleasant lunch in the cafe. I would definitely return if I was in the area again.
Gorgeous, just Grgeous!
I went shopping with my three year old niece last week for some winter boots and was delighted to purchase Breena Dusks. I'm very intrigued to know where the name comes from and what it means, but unfortunately no one could tell me.
My niece picked out the boots from a wide selection, I think she was attracted to the embroidered purple fairies on the sides. The boots have flashing lights and when switched on, they flash when the kids walk. The lights definately sold them to my niece and I had a bit of a struggle to get them off her feet after she had tried them on. In the end she put them on after we had paid and before leaving the store.
The boots are calf length which I think is just right for a young girl and they look very neat on, they are not in any way chunky. This means they can be worn with both skirts/shorts and jeans/trousers, which at £40 makes them great value for money. They look well made and durable and have so far kept her feet both dry and warm.
The boots are made of brown/tan coloured leather and have a rubber rim at the toes which helps prevent scuffs, they also have a lovely cream fur trim making them nice and cosy. They have zips on the inside and it is easy to slip them on and off, a must for a 3 year old.
The boots are available in Clark's stores or online and come in sizes seven to nine and a half, with F & G width fittings.
I am delighted with this purchase and so is my niece!
In August this year I took my daughter away for a few days to the City of Perth (Scotland) for a short break. I had identified lots great places for kids to visit and coupled with the beautiful scenery it seemed like an ideal choice.
I booked a 2 night stay for 1 adult and 1 child on a bed & breakfast basis, at the Holiday Inn Express, Perth. The break came to a total of £98 which I found fantastic value for money.
The hotel is situated on the outskirts of the city on Dunkeld Road, Inveralmond and is placed, quite unusually, amidst car showrooms and factory buildings but was nevertheless a well presented building with good car parking facilities and impeccably maintained grounds. The centre of Perth is only a couple of miles away and takes only 5 minutes in the car. I was advised by hotel staff that public transport links are also excellent to the centre and surrounding areas. Next door to the hotel was a large family friendly restaurant with outdoor seating and both indoor & outdoor kids play areas. The location suited me perfectly, allowing me to easily get out and about and see Perth although I do think some may be put off by the somewhat industrial setting.
Our room was small but perfectly formed and had tea/coffee facilities, TV, hairdryer etc. The beds were clean and comfortable and the bathroom was modern, bright and more importantly spotless, overall I was very pleased and felt it was good value for money.
Breakfast in the morning was a pleasant surprise and included, fruits, yoghurt's, cereals, breads/rolls, bacon/eggs/sausage, hot and cold drinks, cheeses, pastries etc. It was a self-service buffet which was immaculately presented and staff were pleasant and efficient.
The hotel has a small, modern reception area where staff were cheery and accommodating and a small bar area were alcoholic beverages and snacks were served.
Our stay was very pleasant, our room was cleaned daily with fresh towels and linen, there was no noise at night, it was child friendly and overall very impressive. I really dont think I could have found better especially for £98.
Clark's is a National Shoe Shop well known for its quality, excellent fitting and hard wearing shoes although not always for its high fashion. Clark's caters for boys, girls, men and women alike and along with shoes, sells bags and accessories such as specialist cleaning products.
I am a massive fan of Clark's shoes and since my daughter was old enough to walk, have purchased all her shoes from there. I find them very well fitting, very hard wearing and although not cheap, I find them good value for money. I have always experienced first class customer service and have always been very pleased with my purchases. I pay on average £25-£35 for a pair of shoes and £45-£55 for a pair of boots for my 6 year old, these have always lasted until her feet has grown and a bigger size is required. I have never had any cause for complaint.....until now.....
Summer is over and school is returning, I battle my way through a busy Clark's store to the school shoes that are surrounded by bouncing children and rather stressed looking parents. My daughter selects the pair she likes (I approve), we have her feet measured, she tries on the shoes for size and both happy we go to pay. You can imagine my surprise when I am advised that my daughters black leather (Daisy Leap) school shoes are only £26!!
This is at least £10 cheaper than usual. Very pleased I pay and contentedly leave the store.
School returns and out come the shoes, pretty as a picture, plain black leather shoes with a single strap, sporting black patent daisies. Lovely.
Now six weeks into term we have pretty shoes that look as though they're on their last legs, despite being regularly polished and generally well looked after (no tree climbing at playtime to my knowledge) I watch my daughter walk in them and she is walking over to one side, I have seen this before with very cheap shoes. I am very disappointed, where are my good sturdy, hard wearing excellent quality Clark's school shoes? What I have are sub-standard, worn out cheap looking school shoes that I could have picked up in the local supermarket for £10.
I'm not sure what has happened here, but I believe Clark's have very much skimped on quality here in order to produce a cheaper shoe. This is not why I shop in Clark's. I would much rather have paid the extra money and gained a higher quality product. Very disappointed Clark's.
I am not a big fan of Avon Products/Cosmetics, which in fairness is more due to my very sensitive skin than any issue with Avon itself. I do however like Avon Anew Concealer.
The product is well packaged and easily dispensed. It comes in a white stick/tube and is dispensed by twisting the bottom until it clicks. The Concealer is dispensed onto a brush that is used to apply the product.
I don't think that I noticed any dramatic anti-ageing signs, but I am living in hope that I don't actually require any anti ageing. I do think however the product is soft, gentle and kind to the skin. The Concealer is a soft liquid and blends in easily and well to the skin. I don't have great skin and found the Concealer gave me good coverage without blocking my pores.
The price of the Concealer varies greatly depending on offers available. I initially paid £12 but have on two occasions received it free with other (and far more expensive) Anew products.
I have read other reviews about this product and it would appear I am alone in being a fan. But for me, thumbs up! Good coverage and easy on the skin.