Monday 19 September 2016

August's Degustabox Review

I swear DB is psychic. Every time I happen to be on a diet, my box arrives and it's not filled with the tempting treats I always dread (but love!).


Tabasco Sauce - RRP £1.99
This sweet and sticky BBQ sauce/marinade is great for either BBQ's, or to use on your chicken to spice things up a little. We have a heap of BBQ sauces in our cupboards now and really struggle to use them up so I'll be making a conscious effort from now on!

Geeta's Curry Pastes - RRP £1 each

I received Rogan Josh and Tikka paste, and they are exactly how you would imagine - rich in flavour with a great consistency. They're really convenient if you prefer straight-from-the-pack paste.


Oloves - RRP £1

I like the name of this, however unfortunately I don't like the content. Nothing against the brand, I just don't like olives in general, so these never got opened, but went to a more appreciating home instead!

Rakusen's Snackers - RRP from £1.29

These guilt-free snackers (I'm liking it!) are 'less than 1% fat and only 7 calories in every cracker'. They are pretty tasteless by themselves, but that's to be expected. I'd have them with cream cheese (as suggested) or keep it simple with butter. I'm on a bit of a health kick at the minute so I'm trying to watch what I eat!

Willy Chase's Fit Corn - RRp £2.19

I received the apple cider vinegar flavour and it was delicious, a real 'lick-your-fingers-after-every-touch' kinda session. The kick of vinegar was strong, but it just worked, and didn't leave you choking! I did find that these had quite a few corn kernels in them, which I find mightily annoying when eating popcorn. They do some interesting flavours though!

Moroccan Couscous Nutripot - RRP £2.49

I received an 'Aromatic Thai Noodles' and the 'Moroccan CousCous' pot, and I'm going to be honest, I've yet to try these, simply because of said diet. They look convenient in size though (i.e great to take to work).

Dorset Cereals Bircher Muesli - RRP £3.49

Firstly, I'm loving that this came with a real sturdy plastic scoop. Ok - so muesli isn't my most favourite breakfast cereal, in fact I bought some a few months ago and had one mouthful and realised how foul it was. So although its great for your health in comparison to other breakfast options, taste wise it doesn't really tick the boxes for me. Sorry!


Mahou Cinco Estrellas - RRP £1.20

This Spanish beer is mild in tasting and has flavours that 'lingers in the mouth'. I'm no beer drinker, however my boyfriend is, and his thoughts on it? '

Get More MultiVitamins - RRP £1.45

This sparkling lemon & lime drink was great for a sugar kick. It also contains ingredients to top up your daily vitamins, being made with spring water and natural flavours, with no added sugar. I'm not sure I'd want to spend £1.45 on a bottle though...

Clipper Tea (Lime & Ginger green tea) - RRP £1.59

Me and green tea have a love and hate relationship. I see tasty-sounding flavours on the supermarket shelves. I buy said tasty-sounding tea then get home and decide its not so tasty after all. Fast forward a few months and the process starts again, but with a different flavour. I like the sound of them, and I like wasting my money on them, but I don't like the taste, so my appreciative colleague gets gifted with almost fully-boxed green teas several times a year. Back on point(!) I'm still yet to try this lime & ginger tea. I know ginger is used a lot in herbal remedies in relation to health etc, so I'm kind of saving it for those sniffle type days I get in the winter, hoping it will work wonders. That's if I can get it down my throat in the first place.

Are you a foodie like me? Get yourself on the DB wagon and go purchase your very first box! There's a great saving with this code (and I mean great!). Use BLDEG15 at checkout and you're away!
If you do decide to use it, let me know what you think!


Friday 16 September 2016

Nostalgia in Nottingham

At the weekend we did a spontaneous (very) last minute trip to Drayton Manor, followed by a night in Nottingham. We had a stack of Tesco Club card vouchers to use up, so thought we'd try make a weekend out of it.

Friday we took to the road and headed towards Tamworth, near Birmingham. I had never been to that neck of the woods and desperately wanted to stay in Birmingham (and maybe take a sneaky trip to Cadbury World) but I also wanted the journey home the next day to be a little shorter, so I took the wise option and settled on a hotel at midpoint (well, kinda).

Beaut of a duck

After spending a few hours at Drayton Manor being kids, we took an hour drive to Nottingham, checked into our hotel and went for our first freebie meal in ASK Italian.

Park Plaza

ASK Italian
After leaving ASK, we spotted a statue figure in the street, and like magic, memories came flooding back to both of us at the same time, and we quickly recognised that we had been in this spot 8 years prior (we hadn't visited Nottingham since). We then had a chat about how 'times have changed' - 8 years ago we were spending Valentines day here, dancing the night away in Flares nightclub. Now we're spending our evening trying to hunt down Cineworld to watch a movie before resorting back to the hotel room for an early night. Old age, old age, it gets to the best of us...

After a remincising conversation and the need to stop someone to ask for directions, we settled down in the plush seats of the cinema (why can't our local cinema be that comfy?!) to watch 'Don't Breathe'. Great little film..

The next day was spoilt by the rain - Me, being the 'organised and well-prepared' woman I am, never bought a coat, jumper or even umbrella with me so I got wet pretty quickly. It didn't help that I stood in a 2 inch deep puddle in my ballerina pumps which left my feet squelching for the remainder of the day.

Nonetheless, we proceeded to our 4th and final freebie of the weekend; lunch in Zizzi's. How 2 restaurants can be so similar in menu choice I'll never know. Either way, I chose wisely, opting for a 'skinny' pizza in my attempt to stay on plan as much as possible.

We made the obligatory trip to Primark (what city break is complete without a trip to Primark?!). I bought the cutest Minnie mouse candy striped night shirt (which is definitely going in my 'holiday bag' ready for Disney!). Because the rain was playing games, we decided to call it quits and head back home.

Although we were gone for just over 24hrs, it really made me feel like I'd had a break and change of scenery. We spent very little money thanks to Tesco's and I'm definitely going to be planning another similar trip in the New Year! I think that a change of scenery is good for the mind and can really motivate you! (That's my excuse and I'm sticking to it...)


Tuesday 13 September 2016

August Round Up - Birthdays, The Body Coach and York

Wow, summer is almost over. Which means we're only a season away from our holiday!

August has been the month of food for me, but not the junk food  I usually eat. It's been a month of eating lean meals. A friend of mine sent me her diet plan, and I've been using that to plan my meals. It's been bloody hard work, more so the preparation of foods and working it alongside my daily routine. Some days have been tough going and I've felt like throwing in the towel on more than one occasion, not because I've craved sweet things, but just because the prepping, and the thinking ahead has been too much for me. But I did it, I got through cycle one! Either way, this food plan has taken over pretty much the whole of August, and at times I have felt like it has ruled my life. However its definitely made me think more about food and healthier ways of cooking. When I complete the 3 cycles, I'll definitely be investing in the Lean in 15 books to maintain this lifestyle.

August has also been a busy month for family birthdays. I treat my dad to a nice meal out of town, at a restaurant I'd never been to before. For Mike's birthday we had a fairly quiet one. With our holiday payment looming, we kept it low-key. I bought him a fancy coffee machine (something that he's been wanting for a long time now), so we had a play with that and went to the cinema to watch a film that he wanted to see (David Brent: Life on The Road). He also wanted me to bake him his favourite Ferrero Rocher cheesecake, which was no fun when I couldn't eat any! (Didn't want to spoil the diet now, did I?!).

We also took our niece and nephew out for their annual day trip that we do every summer with them.

We took a fairly last-minute trip to Meadowhall in the hope of stocking up on some summer clothes which were in the sales, however the sales didn't appear to have kicked in properly! Still, it was a nice change of scenery and a day out.

At the end of the month I took a trip to York with my mum and her partner. Her partner was there for a work medical, so they thought they'd make a day of it, and invited me along to be navigator, basically.

In between all of this and work, I've been decorating my dressing room. We've been in our house 5 years now and I haven't painted the room since we moved in. It was originally a pastel lilac colour, and although it went with my shabby chic pastel theme at the time, the last few months I was wanting to give it a fresh, more mature feel. I've gone with white walls and it already makes it look so much brighter. Although its taking a lot longer than anticipated... 3 coats of paint later and the lilac is still showing through in places!

I can't believe we're almost into Autumn! What did you get up to in August?

Until next month...

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