Thursday, 13 June 2019

LIFESTYLE | WHAT DOES IT TAKE TO MOVE ACROSS THE WORLD

We all want to explore the world in our own little ways. We want to see what’s out there, bask in the sun of the warmest countries in the world, and walk through forests and up mountains we’d never ever see back home. It’s a big and beautiful place that us human beings call home, and there’s a lot more than just your own neighbourhood for you to absorb!

But when it comes to falling in love with your wanderlust, a lot of us want to relocate permanently. We want to wake up in another country, and go to bed on a timezone different from our own. We want to experience life from another angle, and get to know the climate and culture that’s often opposite to what we grew up with. We want to make friends and settle down on new soil, and most of us can’t afford to take the regular holidays that would enable us to do that!

Moving across the world is going to take a lot of preparation, but you already knew that, didn’t you? You just need to know where to start and what to prioritise during these initial planning stages; moving house within your own country is expensive enough, so you cannot afford to make mistakes when uprooting on an international scale!

(My personal dream move would be to Florida)

First of All, Make Sure You Can Afford To!

It might break your heart a little to learn that you’re not yet in a position where you can afford to move across the globe, but it’s going to be a necessary step in your moving plans. After all, money is everything when it comes to an opportunity like this, and if you’re not moving for work and having most of your expenses covered by the company, you’ve got an almighty bill to foot all by yourself.

Not to mention what it’s going to cost you to buy or rent accommodation whilst you’re out there. No matter where in the world that you go, you’re going to need to fork out for shelter. It’s a human necessity for a comfortable and healthy life, but it does cost the bulk of your finances in the long run. Of course, it’s going to be a lot cheaper in some countries and a lot more expensive in others, so the budget you’ll have to work with ultimately depends on where you’re dreaming of settling down.

So make sure you use something like the loan calculator propertyguru before you make any concrete plans. This is mostly for those of us who want to move out to another country and have our own house to live in whilst we’re there; you’re still going to need a mortgage to be able to afford this privilege.

Knowing what you’re likely to be able to borrow, stacked up against the cost of the house you’ve got your eye on, means you’re in a better position to get pre approved for an overseas mortgage. You might be able to get it from a bank where you currently live, or you might be able to look to a bank abroad - check the rates of each option and see which one would be more practical for you.

Then You Need to Find Yourself a Home

And get it locked down, before you do anything else; it’s definitely not worth it to actually move halfway across the globe only to find out the apartment you thought you paid 6 months upfront rent for has been passed on to someone else. Because once you know for sure that you’ve got somewhere to live, and that you can move in straight away, and that all your facilities and amenities are going to be present and usable, you’re going to be just fine in your new home country.

After all, when you have a shelter, it’s likely you’ve got clean water to drink and wash with, and you’ve got a reliable source of food nearby… a.k.a., you’re in a neighbourhood not far from a supermarket, and you’ve already got an account with a water company to rely on. It’s a lot easier to use normal utilities like these, as an expatriate, than to collect river or rain water and boil it constantly.

Know Where to Find Medical Aid

Next up is settling down in an area with hospitals, pharmacies, regular drug stores, and any other kind of medical amenity nearby. If you’re going to be moving across the world, your healthcare should be of utmost importance - you’re going to need to know who to call, what times these services are open, if they ever close, and if you’ll have reliable and safe access to them.

Ask yourself these questions before you think about putting down a deposit: Is the healthcare free or publicly funded, or will you have to pay for it via the use of insurance? Is there a non-emergency phone number to call when you don’t need to go to the hospital? How far out is the home you’re looking at from the nearest medical centre?

And Keep Your Luggage Light Too

If you’ve finally made up your mind, and you know you have the funds to afford it, feel free to take the leap and move across the world to a new home! But make sure you’re packing light as you go; you don’t want to be lugging around three suitcases onto multiple long haul flights, and then have to pay for a bigger taxi or rental car to transport everything you have with you once you touch down.

So only take what cannot be easily replaced once you touch down. Special clothes and outfits that were part of a limited run, necessary medications you’ll need to register and put a prescription in for, your glasses or contacts etc. Fill up your suitcase with items like these and you’ll probably not even need to pay airline fees!

Moving across the world takes a lot of courage, and a lot of practical thinking!

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Monday, 29 April 2019

HOME | ROSE GOLD GEOMETRIC WALL

I've not done a house update in far too long because decorating your first house turned out to be a much more expensive job than I first thought. Accessories don't just magic out of thin air and as much as you'd love every room to be perfect as soon as you move in, it just doesn't work out that way. You may have heard that it's not a good idea to paint or wallpaper new build homes for at least 6 months due to settlement cracks appearing - and some beauties have appeared in my house! I'm now a year and a bit down the line though and everything seems to have settled so I decided to add some colour to my living room.

Because this is my first house and I've bought it alone I thought what better time to have some pink decor without anyone being able to disagree with me?! I searched Pinterest for some home inspiration and decided that I wanted to stick with some sort of geometric wall (if you follow me on Instagram, you'll know that geometric decor is a huge love of mine). My options were to use Frog Tape and paint which did look quite simple but I realised that I'd only be able to have white lines separating each shape - and I am also partial to some copper/rose gold so after scouring the B&Q website, I finally came across the most perfect rose gold metallic geometric wallpaper.


My friend Hannah pointed out on Instagram that this definitely has similarities to the 'Purple Wall' at Epcot (search #purplewall on Instagram if you don't know what I mean) which makes me extremely happy because I'm a huge Disney lover and I'm always up for incorporating some Disney into my house! I personally think it looks perfect with the bargain curtains I got from Home Bargains (only £34.99 for 90x90!) and the TV unit from Ikea.

I'm so pleased with how my house is coming on, it's slow but it's mine and I'll always be so proud of what I've achieved!

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Friday, 26 April 2019

BEAUTY | SKINNY TAN WONDER SERUM REVIEW WITH BEFORE AND AFTER PHOTOS

If you've known me for a while now, you'll know that I'm hardly a beauty queen - my skincare routine is questionable, I don't tend to my eyebrows anywhere near as often as I should and it has to be a special occasion for me to wear lipstick. But one thing I do know is that life is definitely better with a tan.

I usually go to the professionals for a spray tan to fulfil my tanning needs but when Skinny Tan asked if I wanted to try their new Wonder Serum I decided to go for it because I'd heard such good things about it. Admittedly I was a little bit nervous applying it because I know that I'm not exactly experienced in self-tanning and I worried that I was going to end up patchy and streaky. Luckily, along with the serum, I was also sent an exfoliating mitt and a tanning mitt which did make the process a heck of a lot easier.


The exfoliating mitt is double sided; the orange side for prepping the skin before application and the brown side is to remove or correct your tan which is especially helpful if you're a little bit out of practice. The dual tanning mitt is honestly the best quality tanning mitt I've ever used; it's silky smooth, thick and durable  whereas other mitts I've used have split within a couple of uses. The Skinny Tan mitt makes application much, much easier. 

The serum itself is a formula I've never come across before; other tans I've used have been in lotions, mousses and sprays so I was really intrigued as to how this one worked. The serum formula, coupled with the tanning mitt, made it so easy to spread the product evenly across my skin and it was so easy to buff in with no worries about it streaking or developing patchy. And it actually has an iridescent finish to it and leaves your skin feeling soft and silky after you've applied. I did read that this is supposed to smell better than other fake tans but honestly once it started developing I didn't get any scent other than the tell-tale biscuit scent that you get with most self-tanners. I don't find it particularly bad but I wouldn't say it smells any better than other self-tanning products.

Now for the before and after pictures; I am naturally quite pale and I don't tan very well in the sun so as you can imagine my legs, without tan, are blindingly pasty:

BEFORE SKINNY TAN WONDER SERUM

AFTER SKINNY TAN WONDER SERUM

I'm really impressed with the results. Skinny Tan Wonder Serum gave me a really flawless, soft finish and has meant that I'll be much more confident wearing a summer dress when some of the better weather is here to stay. I generally do feel so much better with a bit of a tan; it makes me much more body confident. I posted a photo to my stories of me applying some new moisturiser to my legs and I was pleased to see that people noticed my tan and asked what I'd used! I do need to perfect my tanning skills because I've not quite got the knack of tanning my feet without it looking weird but I'll be having a look at some YouTube tutorials to help but if you have any tips please send them my way!

You can buy Skinny Tan products from their website as well as Boots and Superdrug.

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LIFESTYLE | DUMBO AT VUE CINEMA DONCASTER

GIFTED EXPERIENCE: I was kindly asked to write up my experience at Vue Doncaster in exchange for two complimentary tickets to see Dumbo 

After living somewhere where there isn't a cinema within a 20 mile radius, I feel really lucky to have things like this right on my doorstep now. Kev and I used to use the cinema a LOT more when we first started seeing each other; as you do - the cinema is a typical date type destination isn't it? But we'd not been for a while so it was nice to get out on a week night to do something a little bit different.

You'd be forgiven for thinking that the cinema is still an expensive night out but Vue Doncaster have actually now restructured their pricing so that for a regular seat any time, any day of the week it's only £5.49 and it's even cheaper at £4.99 if you book your cinema tickets in advance. This is obviously to drag you away from at-home streaming services which were becoming the more favoured way to watch films. However, for me, the beauty of a cinema visit is that it feels like a treat but rather than it breaking the bank it's now much more affordable (and even more so if you are also signed up to things like Meerkat Movies where you get tickets buy one, get one free). 


I'm sure if you live in Doncaster you'll know that Vue Cinema is near Lakeside and the big Asda off Bawtry Road and you may also be aware that there's loads of new eating places opening just opposite the cinema so now not only do we have Pizza Express, Nando's, Frankie and Benny's and Brewer's Fayre, we're also getting a Taco Bell, Dunkin' Donuts, TGI Friday's, Urban Fresh Burgers and Fries and Estabulo so there'll be plenty to choose from if you like to eat before/after your film.


There are of course snacks available to buy in the cinema which are pretty unmissable as you walk in as you're hit by a huge Ben & Jerry's sign, pick n' mix and the smell of popcorn and nachos which makes it really difficult to resist. I always find that Doncaster Vue is fully staffed so there's never an issue in getting served; even as it was very busy with the release of the new Avengers film there were no huge queues which makes the whole experience so much more relaxing. The one thing I can't resist when I go to the cinema is a mixed Tango Ice Blast and I can never say no to going large (for the marginal difference in price I figure I might as well!).



Once we'd picked up our tickets, we sat down to enjoy the film; we had regular seats but there is an option to upgrade to the VIP seats which are bigger and comfier.

I have to say that Dumbo disappointed me a little bit, I realise I probably had high hopes after the last live action Disney I saw was Beauty and the Beast (where I was an emotional mess throughout) but it was just very underwhelming. Dumbo was cute and there were some excellent visual effects but I just wouldn't rate it unfortunately. I am, however, very much looking forward to seeing the Lion King in July and I fully expect to be an emotional wreck during that!

What's your favourite part of going to the cinema?

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