This weekend I had a look round The Range to see if I could find anymore Christmas decorations. We’d recently had a catalogue pushed through the letterbox and after a quick flick through I decided it might be worth a visit.
I was a little disappointed when we got there. A lot of the things I’d see in the catalogue simply weren’t there. I don’t know if they just didn’t have them or if they’d sold out. I know a lot of items are out of stock on the website.
As I’ve mentioned before we only have reindeers on our Christmas tree and to be honest there weren’t that many reindeer items there.
However, it wasn’t a complete waste of time as I managed to find these cute tea light holders. I opted for two so I could have one on each side of the fireplace.
I love how the gold antlers provide a little bit of contrast against all the white. They were an absolute steal at only £1.99 too!
How are your Christmas plans coming along? Is it too early to be thinking about it?
So the first of the Disney X Cath Kidston collaboration has launched and already some of the items are sold out. They’ve released the Winnie the Pooh prints first. I’ll not be ordering anything as I’m holding out for the Minnie and Mickey items but here are my favourites from the range.
Balloon spot raglan dress and elasticated waist skirt
The dress is £75 and the skirt is £40. I love the cut of the dress and the cute cap sleeves but also love how if you have just the skirt you can team it with a plain top so it’s not as much print all at once.
A Day in the Hundred Acre Wood Placement Sweat £35
A cute design on a sweater that’ll be perfect for keeping warm now the days are turning chillier. This is Limited Edition so be sure to keep your eyes out for it coming back in stock.
Balloon spot mini reversible messenger bag £35
I have a couple of this style of bag from Cath Kidston and they are so perfect for when you have a lot to carry. They’re surprisingly roomy and with it being reversible, its like having two bags in one!
Bramley Sprig modal PJ set £40
I love the flowers on these and it’s a true Cath Kidston print. These are Limited Edition too so grab them while you can.
Balloon Spot Breakfast Cup & Saucer £16
Cath Kidston crockery lasts so well. I have a few cups and saucers in various London prints and they look lovely on display but wash well and are sturdy.
There are also home ware and baby items available but these 6 are my favourites. I’m so excited to see what they release next!
In our garden we frequently have foxes. I say frequently, I’m pretty convinced they live in my garden. I think there’s 2-3 and I see at least one every day.
When we moved here we saw our first Fox in April 2015. There seemed to be just one. In the winter this increased to two foxes then back to one.
In the Spring of 2016 we started seeing 2-3. I’m sure now that the 2-3 are a Mother and her 2 cubs.
The British Wildlife Centre says “The mating season is December to February …four or five cubs are born in the Spring and the female fox stays with them….They remain with their mother until Autumn” This all ties in with what we’ve been seeing in our garden.
Some people don’t like foxes and try to deter them from entering their garden but I love them. They’re such a delight to watch through the window. But aren’t they dangerous? That’s what the press would have us believe but the first fox we had was confident. If it saw us it’d simply look at us then lie back down and go back to sleep! We once had the door open in the summer and it wandered over. We quickly closed the door so we’ll never know if it’d actually come in to the house but I doubt it as sometimes when we go out in to the garden you can’t see it’s there as it’s asleep in the bushes but you’ll hear it quickly scrabble away if you venture off the patio and on to the grass.
Lots of people ask me if we feed the foxes and the truth is we don’t. We give them as much peace as we can. If they’re in the garden we leave them be. The only thing we have started doing is, when we cut the grass, we’ll leave a pile of cuttings for them to have a snooze on. They love a grass bed!
It can be tricky to get good pictures of them sometimes. The adult seems far more relaxed around people, the younger cubs though are skittish and incredibly mischievous. They’ll chase the butterflies in the garden and also pinch the squeaky toys from next doors dog meaning we have to go out and throw them back!
The pictures don’t always turn out well as I take them through the window you get reflection like the one above but this is one of the better shots of the cubs. They’re not as confident as the adults and often run when they see me with a camera.
They seem to have a routine of coming in to the garden around 5am and sleeping on and off through the day. Sometimes they’ll have a little get together and play or wash each other or disappear early but usually they’re here until 5pm when they disappear off in to the night to begin their hunting.
In February 2015 we moved 250 miles from Yorkshire to Hampshire. This was no easy task but somehow we managed to do this quite smoothly so I thought I’d pop down some of the tips and tricks we used that might help someone else in a similar situation.
Cash in those hotel points – Do you have loyalty points with hotel chains? Now is the time to finally cash those in. When we were coming down for the weekends to look at houses, areas to live etc we cashed in our Hilton points that we had accrued through a couple of holidays to Florida. We came down three or four times and actually never paid for a hotel which was a big help as it could have got quite costly, quite quickly.
Become best friends with Rightmove – We set up alerts on Rightmove for the type of houses we wanted in our desired areas. You can add in all the filters for things that are must haves so it will only send you alerts for houses that are suitable.
Take note of estate agent names – Another thing we did whilst exploring the area was take down the name of the estate agents we saw with houses similar to what we wanted. We then rang them and explained the situation of us being so far away. A couple agreed to keep us on a priority list and when a house matching our needs came up we were the first to know. They rang us before putting it on Rightmove and their website.
Be super ruthless – You’re going to be moving your things long haul so make sure you’re only taking what you need. Think about if it’s still packed in a box from your last move 5 years ago (yes we had this) then do you really need it in your new home? Have you used it or worn it in the last 6 months? If the answer is no then you’re probably not going to wear it or use it again.
Make use of charity shops/bins – We had a lot of stuff we just didn’t want/need at our new house and so we donated a lot of it to charity. We took things like homeware, crockery etc to the charity shop so that other people could make good use of it. I used the charity bins you find in car parks too to donate things like clothes and books when I was sorting things in an evening and the charity shops were closed.
Use your friends – We had a friend with a large van who we paid to bring down some of our things for us. This was much cheaper than using a removal firm. We also had a friend with a trailer who allowed us to borrow this to take down a couple of loads ourselves, again, this saved us from having to use a removal firm.
The small town I live in has some lovely little gift shops and it was in one of these I picked up two Village Candles. I’m usually a Yankee Candle fan through and through and I’ve seen Village Candles a couple of times but never taken the plunge in buying one. That was until I was browsing one of the little gift shops and saw they had 25% off Village Candles, how could I resist? Now seemed the perfect opportunity to buy them and so I chose two:
Brownie Delight – Butter, Sugar, Dark Chocolate, Vanilla
The one thing that annoys me about Yankee Candles is the fact the large jar candles only have one wick that often ends in the candle becoming tunnelled, even with all the accessories that are supposed to help like the shade and wick trimmer. However the Village Candles come with a double wick. I was intrigued to see if it would burn better and all the way to the edge and lo and behold it did! Brilliant.
I was worried the scents on the candles wouldn’t be as strong on the Village Candles. Yankee are great for fragrancing the whole room and there’s nothing worse than buying a scented candle for it to have little effect. So imagine my delight when burning the Brownie Delight candle on a cold February evening as it began to fill my living room with a warming Brownie-baking-in-the-oven fragrance.
I tried the Summer Slices candle on a warm March afternoon when you could just feel Spring starting in the air. I know this scent will be perfect in the Summer. It’s a light smell and not too heavy for the warm Summer air. I can not wait to burn this on warm Summer evenings with the French doors open. Bliss.
So Village Candles, are they a patch on Yankee Candles? They’re a very strong contender and I might just be a convert 😉