A Rant About Toilets…As You Do

This is not the post I had planned to write today, but as I seem to be last minute Larry and forget to finish editing my post I’m going to have a quick rant about something that really wound me up today!

Myself, Mr H and B ended up going to a Wetherspoons for lunch today. Before we left to drive the half hour home I took B to change his nappy. We traipsed to the toilets upstairs but found no changing facilities. Not even a space next to the sink where I could at least lay him (and anti bac after of course!). A lovely woman informed me that the changing facilities were downstairs (annoying but not world ending) in the disabled toilets.

Here comes ranting point number one…. WHY ARE WE STILL PUTTING BABY CHANGING IN THE DISABLED LOOS???? Seriously?! Oh can get really compact ones, they fold down, they will fit in the standard toilets. Stop making me use a vital disabled facility to change a small child’s bum!! It is unfair on anyone who rightfully needs to use it.

Reluctantly I headed back downstairs. I’d have resorted to laying him on the floor but one of the loos has flooded and there was patches of water and grubby shoe marks everywhere. Fine, I’d use the disabled loo as fast as I could.

And this is when I encountered rage making point number two….it was locked. Up on the wall was a big sign announcing that it could only be opened by a member of staff when asked. So I asked. 5 minutes later no one had turned up and I gave up and left huffing and puffing, but let’s face it, this was a minor inconvenience for me and just irritating. But what if I was the disabled person who needed the loo??

WHY ARE DISABLED TOILETS KEPT LOCKED AND ONLY OPENED ON REQUEST???? Many people require the use of these facilities because they won’t have the time to make it to the other loos. Or as a human they may have waited til the last minute, for whatever reason, and be desperate. Why do they have to ask to just go to the toilet? Why should anyone have to wait for someone to unlock the door for them? A grown adult shouldn’t be made to ask! Lots of people would find that embarrassing, or just too time consuming and it could cause an accident for them! It just seems absolutely ridiculous!!

What do you think? Am I justified in my annoyance, or am I ranting over nothing??

Mrs H xxx

#Blogtober18

Blogtober Is Back! A Brief Reflection

This is the third year I’m joining in with #Blogtober and I’m excited it’s back.

This time of year always has me feeling more productive and excited for the coming season, so Blogtober feels much more achievable than if it was any other month for me.

Last year I didn’t actually manage to do the whole month, which is a little embarrassing considering I did manage it the first year, and I had a baby during October that first year! I was actually really disappointed with myself last year, for not being able to do it all. But now as I look back on this last year I’m actually pretty pleased that I achieved any of it.

I can’t remember writing any of the posts. I can’t remember sitting down and starting a post. I can’t remember making the photo for every post. In fact there’s a lot of the last year and a half that I don’t remember. And every so often little flashbacks of things come back to me. Some are good, some are not so good.

Postnatal anxiety and depression affected me more than I ever knew. And it’s only now that I’m spending more time on the “good side” that I notice just how ill I was.

I’ve been medicated for almost a year now and for me they’ve been little miracles. I know medication won’t be for everyone but they’ve truly helped bring me back to being me. I don’t know if it’s something I’ll need forever or if they’ll just help me reset and I can ditch them. Either way I’m not too bothered. If I had something like diabetes or epilepsy then there would be no question of taking medication for the rest of my life.

Now of course, the last year has been about so much more than PND and PNA, but starting Blogtober again gave me a little time to reflect on this time last year.

Will I complete #Blogtober18 ? No idea! But if I don’t, it won’t be because I’m not well. And I’m excited to try!

Mrs H xxx

#Blogtober18

Spiced Applesauce with Brown Sugar Pancakes

This weekend is the official start of Autumn. The Autumn equinox. Where the day is exactly as long as the night. And soon the nights will be much longer. Nights curled up in cosy slippers, wrapped in knitted cardigans and snuggled under a soft blanket.

What more could you need on nights like that than an easy but delicious seasonal treat? Actually, why wait until the night? These are just as delicious scoffed at breakfast too!

Ingredients:

Pancakes

4 heaped tbsp self raising flour

2 level tsp brown sugar

1 egg

1/2 pint milk

Butter for frying

Spiced Apple Sauce

2 eating apples chopped into 1cm chunks (peeled or not, depending on your preference)

1/4 cup water

1/4 cup brown sugar

1/2 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp ginger

  • Stir the flour and sugar together in a large bowl
  • Pour in some of the milk (you made not need it all so as slowly!) until the batter is very thick and doesn’t fall off the spoon easily
  • Beat in the egg
  • Add in a little more milk until the batter is a little thinner. Still thick, but more pourable than before. As I said, oh may not need all of the 1/2 pint so add it a bit at a time
  • In a hot frying pan, melt a tsp of butter until bubbling and fry tablespoons of batter, 3 or 4 pancakes will usually fit at the same time but depending on the size of your pan of course
  • Once the little puddles of batter start bubbling on the top they’re ready to flip. Should take 1-2 mins on the fest side and a minute once flipped
  • Pile them onto a plate lined with a piece of kitchen roll

  • To make the applesauce put the chopped apples and water into a saucepan and bring to a boil
  • Turn the heat down and let it simmer gently until the apples have softened
  • Stir in the brown sugar and let it come back to a simmer
  • Sprinkle over the cinnamon and ginger and stir to evenly distribute
  • Let simmer until the juice has begun to thicken and the apples are really soft
  • The sauce is now ready. You can use a potato masher or even pop it in a blender to make it a smoother sauce, but I like to leave mine a little chunkier

This recipe can be easily doubled or even tripled, but these measurements as they are should serve 2 adults and 2 small children as a snack…..depending on how hungry the kids are, they may just demolish the lot if you’re not quick enough to grab some!

What autumnal recipes are you looking forward to this season? Let me know if you try these!

Mrs H xxx

Beauty Studio at Superdrug

*Superdrug provided a treatment of my choice at the Beauty Studio in exchange for a review of the services. All comments and opinions are strictly my own*

Did you know that superdrug does beauty treatments?? I didn’t! Not until they asked me to go and review a treatment at the Beauty Studio in my local Superdrug store.

The idea is absolutely brilliant. No appointments are needed and they offer a range of treatments from hair removal to nails. Some even offer hairdressing appointments!

Now I’m sure we’ve all heard a lot about self care lately, especially as a parent. And if beauty is your idea of self care, it’s not always easy to do. If you’re anything like me you’ll unexpectedly find yourself with the time to go get your nails done, but won’t be able to because there’s no appointments. That’s the best thing about the Beauty Studio, you can just walk right in whenever you’re free. If all the beauticians are with clients you can just wait until a space becomes available.

I visited the Beauty Studio, Superdrug, in St David’s 2 in Cardiff. They didn’t allow any photos to be taken, I was asked not to and to delete the one I did take, so I took this photo from the website. The studio in the Cardiff store is in the centre of the shop, and there’s a huge range of cosmetics and perfume to browse if you have the time.

I haven’t had my eyebrows done for quite a while, and shallow or not I always feel better about myself if my eyebrows and nails are done. I usually get them waxed and tinted, but took the opportunity to try threading for the first time. I guess everyone is different, but threading is not for me! The finish is not as neat as I’m used to, and holy moly it hurt! I much prefer waxing, one quick pull and it’s done! Although I will say the redness and puffiness calmed a lot quicker than it usually does when waxing.

A sneaky before shot

I wasn’t 100% pleased with my eyebrows. They were not terrible by a long shot, but just not as good as I would have liked. The shape was fine, but the tint wasn’t quite right. It was slightly over my eyebrows shape but not dark enough, so looked a bit like I’d smudged eyebrow pencil on them.

After – not terrible, just not how I like them

Also, I think the only downside from the drop in appointments is that the beautician wasn’t so keen to talk or take the time with me. As I said, I not had my brows threaded before so didn’t understand what she meant when she asked me to “hold” (she meant gently. Pull the skin either side of my brows, but I had no clue) and it was a bit rushed. When I said that I would have liked the tint a bit darker I was advised that there wouldn’t be time to re do them and I would need to wait until they next needed tinting.

Would I go back? Actually, yes, I probably would. Perhaps I wouldn’t bother with the tint and just stick to my Maybelline tattoo brow, but for £8 and no need to book, I’d get my eyebrows waxed there. Don’t underestimate how little free time parents get, drop in treatments are definitely a great thing! And like I said, they do have a range of other treatments, including eyelash extensions, so if you were getting ready for a date night, or prepping for a holiday, or even just to treat yourself, you could pop in and get your nails, brows and eyelashes sorted, as well as picking up any make up must haves you need too.

Mrs H xxx

BLOG BOOK TOUR – Day of the Dead by Don Simkovich & Lon Casler Bixby

Today I’m joining in with my first ever blog book tour, and hopefully not my last. I was sent a digital copy of this book in order to join in with the book tour, the blurb and author descriptions were provided for me to include, but the review is my own.

My favourite book genres are crime thrillers, so I was pleased to be offered this book as my first blog tour. There’s always a joke from Mr H when I’m reading as to how many people have been killed as a direct correlation to whetherI’m enjoying the book. I see it as a direct opposite to my usually lovely personality, and a complete escape from my reality….at least I hope so haha!!

The blurb:

DOUBLE-CROSS, REVENGE, AND MURDER.  IT’S JUST ANOTHER HALLOWEEN IN LA.

UNTIL DETECTIVE TOM STONE TAKES ACTION.

Multiple murders with one grisly connection have Detectives Tom Stone and Jake Sharpe pursuing every lead.  Their main suspect, Anthony Angelino, fresh out of prison, dreams of building a new empire, but his past quickly catches up to him.  Once again he is on the run from the police and the drug cartel that tried to ruin him.

The head of the cartel, Frank DeVito, tails Stone hoping the Detective’s investigation will flush out Angelino.  Then he can exact his revenge and claim what he says Angelino has stolen – a large shipment of pure cocaine.

Angelino’s girlfriend, Sara, pleads for him to escape the deadly lifestyle.  As the body count rises, Stone confronts the challenges in his relationship with Alisha Davidson, Angelino’s defense attorney.

Halloween dramatically twists into Day of the Dead celebrations as cocaine’s promised riches weave a tale of bloody betrayal, shattered friendships and loves both lost – and won.

About the Authors:

Lon Casler Bixby

Lon is a published author in various genres: Fiction, Poetry, Humor, Photography, and Comic Books. He is also a professional award-winning photographer whose work has been featured in a wide variety of magazines, art & coffee table books, and has also been displayed in Art Galleries throughout the world.

Lon lives out of his photography studio in Burbank, California where he shares his living space with his wonderful, albeit spoiled, Silver Lab named Silver.

Don Simkovich

Don returned to his love for writing fiction after years of writing and narrating a radio spot series, marketing copy, and handling the pressures of a wild and crazy family life.

Frequent calls to the local Sheriff’s office, plus the intensity of handling teen alcoholism and teen pregnancy pressed stories from his mind like Earth’s weighty layers turn shale into harvestable fuel.

Well, you get the picture.

Don has fine-tuned his craft writing romance to crime fiction and the recent Tom Stone detective stories.

He lives at the base of the San Gabriel Mountains with his family, two dogs, and anyone else who happens to drop by and live for a spell.

The review:

So, what did I think?

It took me a little while to get into the book and get used to all the characters, but I actually think that was more to do with me trying to start the book at the beginning of the holiday, traveling and being interrupted by the kids.

Once I’d gotten into the first few chapters I was hooked, and I’ve taken every opportunity this holiday to read it, and was done in less than a week.

I became really invested in the characters journeys, the good and the bad. Normally I’d prefer a bit more of a whodunnit, but the way the story unfolded meant that although you could see hw the story may pan out, you were still left guessing about who and how everyone interlinked throughout the book. Lots of little twists and turns mean things never get dull.

There was suitable blood shed for me though the descriptions weren’t all too gruesome if that’s not your thing. There was plenty left to the imagination, in a great way.

I was told before I read the book that this was the third in the Tom Stone series, but I’d actually forgotten when I read the book, so I can say for sure that this works as a stand alone story. I have downloaded the first two books onto my kindle because I’d like to read about the build up to what happens in this book, but The Day of the Dead is certainly easy to read on its own.