Professional Tips to Remember When Hiring Drink Glasses

The bigger the party, the quicker the drinks go. Often, it seems that no matter how many glasses you have available, you just never have enough to go around.

There are different reasons why you may never seem to have enough drinking glasses for your parties and gatherings. For one, buying glassware isn’t always an affordable solution for serving your guests. Additionally, storing your drinking glasses can certainly become a hassle, especially if you don’t host get-togethers frequently.

Rather than never having enough drinking glasses, or buying more and then trying to figure out where on Earth to store them, consider hiring glassware for your next event. Here are four tips to consider when hiring drink glasses:

Select drinking glasses that suit the beverage(s) you’ll be serving

There are many ways to be a good host. However, one of the tips many fail to consider is picking out the right type of drinking glasses based on the beverages they’re going to be serving their guests, whether it’s sparkling apple cider or their favourite cocktail.

After all, the size, shape, and style of your glass can positively alter the smell and flavour of certain beverages you serve. Why let your guests settle for less? There’s a reason why there are so many styles of glassware out there. From tumblers to red wine glasses, the varieties of glassware you pick from making a significant difference.

Consider how fancy your event will be

Having silly shot glasses at a five-star wedding or crystal champagne flutes at a casual backyard birthday party are bad moves, and not to mention, is pretty embarrassing. It’s important to select drinking glasses that reflect the formality of your event as much as possible.

Buy enough so everyone can have one glass per hour of the party

Especially when it comes to weddings and other fancy events where adult beverages play a prominent role, it’s ideal to have enough glassware to allow each guest to have a drink each hour of the party.

For example, if your wedding reception will have 100 people and is expected to last three hours, 300 glasses should be available just to be on the safe side. After all, drinks may get lost, a glass or two may accidentally break, or someone may want multiple drinks of different beverages.

Pick the material of the glassware based on who will be at the event

Will there mostly be wild college students at the gathering? Are children expected to be present? Or will the party mainly consist of older adults? Generally, who will be attending makes all the difference when it comes to selecting the right glassware to rent. For instance, consider glass-like plastic or less-delicate glassware if many children will be at the party or gathering.

Conclusion

Although some frequent party hosts may prefer to buy drinking glasses in bulk and store them in their garage, basement, or attic after the festivity is over, others find it more convenient to simply hire drink glasses instead. We all have our individual preferences.

When hiring drink glasses, it’s important to consider what beverages you’ll be serving, the fanciness of your event, how many guests will be attending, and who will be present. With these in mind, you’ll be one step closer to a proper party.

Review: Hersey & Son Silversmiths Zodiac Pendant

If you are a fan of Astrology and regularly peruse your horoscope, you will love the beautiful Zodiac & Birthstone Pendant I have been gifted by Hersey & Son Silversmiths in London.

Hersey & Son is one of the few remaining traditional silversmiths in the UK and their expertise certainly shows in the quality of my pendant.  They are a father and son business and have been making jewellery in the UK since 1955.  They are also members of the National Association of Jewellers so you know you are purchasing from a genuine company.

The Zodiac & Birthstone Pendant comes with a solid sterling silver 1970’s style zodiac pendant but you have the option to add a birthstone gemstone charm and a mini silver initial charm.  The pendants can also be engraved on their back if you are giving one as a gift.

You can be confident that you have high-quality solid sterling silver as Hersey & Son pieces are hallmarked by the London Assay Office.

The gemstones used include cabochon-cut sapphires, rubies, emeralds, tanzanite and moonstone and, of course, all 12 horoscope signs are featured:- Taurus, Gemini, Cancer, Leo, Virgo, Libra, Scorpio, Sagittarius, Capricorn, Aquarius, Pisces and Aries.

Purchasing is easy and the final price of the pendant will depend on the options you choose.  After you have chosen the appropriate zodiac pendant for your star sign then you simply indicate your requirements using the clickable form on the webpage.

You’ll be taken through the various price options for the additional elements of the Zodiac & Birthstone Pendant including:-

  • alternative chain length (a 16-18 inch chain or a chain suitable for a child is included free)
  • birthstone charm
  • chosen initial
  • font required (if you would like your pendant engraved)
  • your special message

I am a Gemini, my birthstone is Emerald for May and obviously my initial is L.

My pendant arrived beautifully packaged in a little grey presentation box and, as a particularly nice touch, there was even a silver cleaning cloth included so that you can take care of your necklace.

It is beautifully made and polished to perfection.  The clasp is also just the right size to allow you to put the pendant on yourself.  The chain I am wearing is the 16-18 inch option.

There is also a man’s Zodiac Pendant which comes without the charms.

Orders over £50 are free and there are also special delivery options, including next day if you need to rush someone a gift.

You can also get 10% off your first purchase if you sign up to the Hersey & Son newsletter.

How to Keep Your House Clutter Free

Do you find it a never-ending struggle to keep the house clutter free? If so, you certainly aren’t alone. Even with the best of intentions, it’s easy to get bogged down in clutter. This is especially true if you run a busy family home.

The trouble is, clutter can play havoc with your wellbeing. Have you ever noticed how much more relaxed and happier you feel when the home is clean and tidy? If you want to ensure it stays that way, here you’ll discover some of the best ways to keep your house clutter free.

Keep on top of mail

Let’s face it, one of the key culprits when it comes to clutter is mail. Whether it’s opened or unopened mail, it’s easy to let it build up on tables or countertops. While you can’t eliminate mail altogether, what you can do is have a system.

This means, having an organised space to store important mail, and throwing away any mail you don’t need. If you get into a habit of doing this daily, it’s going to help you really keep on top of it.

Ensure everything has a place

One of the main reasons clutter builds up is because you don’t have designated places for everything. When you don’t know where something goes, it’s easy to just dump it onto a work surface.

Take the time to find a place for everything in the home. If you find there’s a lot of things you don’t have a place for, consider investing in more storage so they can at least be hidden from view.

Use clever furniture

You can eliminate a lot of clutter simply by investing in clever furniture. For example, buying furniture such as coffee tables, which also come with built-in storage are great for removing clutter from view. You could also invest in an extendable dining table from Heal’s. Kitchen tables are commonly used to dump things onto. So, having one which can be folded away when not in use will eliminate some of the clutter.

As you can see, there are a few great ways you can use to keep the home clutter free. Once you’ve taken the initial steps to eliminate the clutter, you should find it a lot easier to keep on top of. Don’t underestimate the power of a junk drawer either as these can help to keep clutter which doesn’t have a place anywhere else in the home.

Different Ways To Entertain The Kids This Summer

When school’s out, it can be a bittersweet time. You’ve got your kids back for the summer, and that’s always fun. But at the same time, it can feel stressful to have so much on your plate and to have to entertain them too. Because it’s so easy to get set in your ways and used to your usual term-time routine. And while entertaining the little ones can be easy in terms of playing games and going to the park like you usually might, you should also look to change shake things up. Because you now have the better part of six weeks to contend with! So here are some ideas…

 Get Creative

Yes, crafts can be messy – but they’re so fun and great for the kids. So why not look online at the different things you can make, and just aim to have a little fun with it all.

Explore

From here, you could then also look to get out and explore a little more. Why not go on an adventure? Camp in the woods or your own back garden? Or look for fairies or chase bugs? Be imaginative here, because simple activities can come alive this way.

 Travel

 And, of course, you could also travel too. But not just on a big family holiday! Maybe you want to enjoy a weekend away? You could head to London and see a show in the West End as in the infographic below.


Infographic Design By theatre shows

 

Mums – It’s OK To Hate The Facebook ‘Perfect Summer Holiday’ Spam

Oh dear.  My timeline is AWASH with people’s holiday photos.  There’s an overload of Facebook holiday spam. Jealous, me?  Hmm.  I say this without judgement, without censure but knowing that there will be lots of mums out there reading this stuff and feeling full-on MISERABLE.

Feeling like they should be up at dawn, wearing flowers in their hair, ‘making memories’, building sandcastles and adding impossibly perfect filters to their insta snaps.

Because, if it didn’t happen on social media, did it even happen?

For most of us, the long summer holiday is an endurance test.  Even though we love our kids to bits, we find ourselves completely out of kilter when the routine is removed.

A wise mum I was talking to yesterday said that it takes a while to ‘get into the rhythm’ of the summer holiday – and so it does.

It takes me a good 6 weeks.

Food bills rocket, electricity bills triple and let’s not talk about the daily ‘screen time’ battle that started as soon as the kids’ teachers collapsed in a heap with a mug of gin last Friday.

Tweens are strange beasts.  Slightly too young to be allowed to roam around but (hurrah!), way too old for soft play.  Their immediate destiny is to lurk, bored to death on swings they can no longer climb in whilst scrolling on their thumbs with engorged thumbs.

Each morning I feel like a failing holiday rep trying to flog a day trip to some godforsaken island.  That’s when I’m not still trying to run a blog and check that the kids’ water intake hasn’t got so low they are now basically blocks of salt.

And, when you’ve lived somewhere for as long as I have and you know every kerbstone and blade of grass, the idea of tramping around the village for ‘a bit of fresh air’, knowing that the kids are counting the minutes till the Wi-Fi switches off at home, it’s even more testing.

We’ll get on with it, though, won’t we?  We always do.  But for some of us struggling with anxiety or depression or any other mental health issue, or suffering from any chronic condition which never takes a day off (hello Tinnitus), then it’s time to give OURSELVES a break.

Ignore the ‘jolly holiday’ hashtags.  The exhortations and cries of “I’m living my best life”.  Those Facebook posts which share stories of long lost summers and childhood bliss that just make you want to cry.

I’m not saying I won’t have a glass of wine and wallow in memories of the long hot summer of 1976, of course not.

But while I’m wallowing I’ll still be wondering if serving pizza three times a week breaks some sort of council bye-law.

Real-life is messy.  Uncomplicated.  Annoying.  It’s still wonderful but let’s just all collectively breathe in and remember that, sometimes, being honest not only helps us but is the kindest thing we can do for our fellow parents.  And there’s no shame in unfollowing the holiday spam culprits for a while.




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A New Sport To Try – Cricket!

What a summer of sport it has been this year. Did you catch the amazing Wimbledon Finals, or perhaps, like many, you were glued to the Cricket World Cup and England’s amazing victory.  No wonder, then that interest in cricket is growing and, if you are interested in playing this sport, read on.

There are a lot of different reasons why you should consider cricket. When you combine this sport with the help of a personal training company that has a good reputation for giving nutritional plans that actually work, you have the perfect recipe for a healthy lifestyle.

Cricket also offers a wealth of health benefits too. It is great for boosting hand-eye coordination, physical fitness, balance, coordination, stamina, and endurance. For a sport that is going to give you an all-around health boost, you will struggle to find better.

Aside from the health benefits that are associated with cricket, you should also consider playing this sport because of the social advantages you will gain too. Cricket presents you with a great way to meet other people and you are going to be able to enjoy this sport with your entire family too.

Ready to get started? Your cricket bat is your most important purchase

If you take a look on the Internet you will see you have a phenomenal number of cricket bats. A lot of people make the big error of choosing a cricket bat without giving a lot of consideration to their purchase. They go for the bat with the nicest design or the cheapest price tag! This is a big mistake to make and quite often it results in people effectively throwing their money down the drain. Your choice of cricket bat will have a huge impact on your performance. Choose wisely and you will play the best you have ever played! Choose without care and you could find that your game deteriorates rapidly. Don’t believe it? Read on to find out more…

One of the biggest mistakes people make is purchasing the cheapest bat they lay their eyes on. Of course, we do not all have endless pits of money and unlimited budgets. However, if you want to make savings, by all means, do it! But make sure the bat is of quality first. A lot of the cheap bats are made from Kashmir willow. This is a material that lacks in terms of quality. The willow is too hard and you will never find that elusive sweet spot you want when you go to strike the ball. Instead, you should look for a bat that has been made from English willow, which is a lot softer and of much better quality. The difference between the two is astounding. 

Another factor that can have an impact on your sports performance is the weight of the bat. There is no right or wrong answer when it comes to selecting the right weight. You simply have to make sure you are comfortable using the bat. So, how does the weight of a cricket bat affect your performance? Well, if you go for a bat that is too heavy you are really going to struggle to swing it with ease, making it uncomfortable for you and awkward when you go to strike the ball. Nonetheless, if your bat is too light, you will find it almost impossible to generate the power you need. Thus, it is all about finding the middle ground. 

Last but not least, the final attribute that can influence your performance is the size of your bat. This is something that should not be too difficult to get right. If you look on the Internet you will find in-depth guides regarding choosing the right bat size. Nevertheless, generally speaking, you merely need to select between a short handle (SH) bat and a long handle (LH) bat. The latter is designed for those that are 6 ft.4 and taller, whilst a SH bat is for people beneath this height. If you purchase the wrong size bat you will find it difficult to play the game.

Hopefully, you now have a better understanding of why it is so important to choose your cricket bat with care. If you consider the points that have been mentioned and choose a high-quality brand you cannot go wrong.

 

How Can Tile Design Make Your Home Design More Appealing?

It is no wonder that kitchens and bathrooms are the two most renovated spaces in homes in the UK. Most families spend a considerable amount of time in these two special rooms in which tiles can (or should) play a starring role.

Photo by Rustic Vegan on Unsplash

Tiles have always been the material of choice in these spaces because they are sturdy, easy to clean, and practical. Lately, they have taken a whole new importance in home design. Tiles can now mimic other materials, form part of an artistic design, or bring other cultures into the modern British home. These are just a few of the top trends to watch out for.

Natural and Neutral

Modern, simple, clean spaces continue to hold sway in contemporary homes, with natural light joined to neutral hues to make for comfortable yet peaceful interiors that feel like home.

Just a few years ago, tiny Arabian tiles were gracing showers in the trendiest of homes but now larger, almost invisible tiles have returned to the fore, dressing bathrooms in light coffee and eggshell hues.

Large tiles with flat, almost imperceptible borders are gracing walk-in showers. They are equally subtle on flooring, usually bearing hues like light grey, white, or beige. Beautiful flooring is married to suspended cabinetry, standing bathtubs, and gorgeous accent spotlights, fitted within scaffolding for a ‘starlight, starbright’ effect.

Mosaic Tiles as Art 

Mosaic tiles make an artistic statement, and they are present as ever behind suspended basins (in bathrooms). They are additionally gracing kitchen walls, the sides of central islands, and the main structures of home bars.

If you’d like to include this ‘tiny’ tiled effect (in a myriad of colours and effects) to your home, why not start with a small space – for instance, the space surrounding a bathroom mirror? A simple geometric tiled frame, or a column of tiles in a key area of your bathroom will add a touch of colour in an otherwise neutral space.

Tiles on flooring

Tiles are now an ideal choice of flooring for living rooms, as well as bathrooms and kitchens. Ceramic tiles with wood effects, for instance, are an ideal choice for living rooms adjacent to swimming pools.

These tiles are sturdy and water resistant, and they are subtle and easy to clean. Because materials mimic wood, marble, and other attractive materials while having a better ‘grip’, they are a fantastic choice for families.

In homes with small children, beautiful rugs can be used to add style and comfort to spaces like the TV/living area.

Tiles have made a comeback thanks no new materials that make them look like smoother, more organic components of flooring, showers, and kitchen furniture. The Arabian or mosaic tiled effect continues to hold sway, especially in artistic designs that seek to draw the eye towards a particular area of the room.

If you are considering a floor or wall change, or you simply wish to jazz up any room with tiles, check out the wide range of finishes, colours, and styles available. You may end up choosing tiles for more than just one project.

A Southern Day Trip With The Kids – Keeping Everyone Entertained

The school holidays begin tomorrow and, for many, the long summer break has already begun. Now, the only issue with the summer holidays with children is finding a way, or a lot of ways, to keep them entertained all summer long.

Sadly, you can’t spend the whole six weeks on a summer holiday aboard, in fact, these are getting a little too pricey these days, especially with the uncertainty over BREXIT.  Only today the predictions for the UK economy in the event of a likely no-deal BREXIT are not exactly encouraging.

At least you can go on a day trip here in the UK, which is sure to keep everyone happy – and support our own tourist industry too.

One of our favourite ways to travel is by train.  Obviously, you don’t want to rack up too many miles on a day trip but we can go as far as Brighton, or thereabouts and a train journey adds some extra fun to the excursion.  It’s certainly a welcome break from sitting in a queue on the motorway in the hot sun!

So whether you’re travelling from Wales to Brighton, London Bridge to Brighton or even Birmingham or Bristol to Brighton, here are some things to do with the kids outdoors.

Walks

In this area, you’ll find plenty of places to go walking, which may sound a bit bizarre, but trust me, it’s a great activity to take part in.

Not only will you and the children get to enjoy the great outdoors, but you’ll also be keeping fit and healthy, while also helping them to burn steam so they go straight to bed later on. It’s also not a pricey affair, as you’ll be able to pack some lunches in a bag and go off on your jollies.

Filled with wondrous fauna and flora, and the odd bit of history, and not forgetting great sights, places to experience for walks are the Arlington Bluebell Walk, Devils Dyke and Ditchling Beacon and Saxon Shore way, to name a few.

Sightseeing

There are plenty of lovely things to see and do here too.

If you can get to Oxfordshire, there’s obviously the stunning universities and the many spires that are waiting to be looked at. Fans of the TV series Inspector Morse and Endeavour will enjoy seeing the locations where so many of the episodes were filmed too and then there is the nearby splendour of Blenheim Palace.

Meanwhile, Brighton way is filled with other amazing awe-inspiring places from the beaches to the South Downs and even the lanes where you’ll find all sorts of quaint shops (and jewellers!).

Oh and don’t forget to take the children to the pier.

Unique places

Maybe your kids want a little something different, well, there’s something for everyone there too.

From Millets Farm Falconry Centre to the Crocodiles of the World, you’ll find more than your fair share of wildlife Oxfordshire way. Meanwhile, Preston Manor in Brighton and Buscot House in Faringdon are ideal for kids that love a little history.

Of course, there are plenty of other things to do with the little ones. But, if you want places filled with nature, history, and all-round fun that won’t break the bank, these are a few good places to start.

Great ways to have fun with the kids at Niagara Falls

Visiting the Niagara Falls is on a lot of people’s bucket lists. Every year, 30 million people visit the area. So, I know for sure that at some point many of you will decide to do so too. It is certainly a place that is on our family travel wishlist.

I decided to focus on things you could do with kids because I know that many of my readers are parents or grandparents. If you want a more adult-orientated guide to visiting the Niagara Falls area, you can find an excellent one here.

Let off steam at a water park

There are two great indoor water parks, located near the Falls. The closest one is the Fallsview Indoor Water Park. It has three acres of water slides, a tipping bucket and a large wave pool, as well as an outdoor activity pool. If you have toddlers, or preschoolers and the Tiny Tots Splash Park area will be ideal for them.

Take one of the boat tours

There are several boats which take passengers to the base of the waterfalls. All of them offer a great experience. If you have young children, the calmer slower trips are the best option.  Whereas, older children will likely enjoy the high-speed boat trip more. It is certainly a thrilling experience.

Take The Journey Behind the Falls tour

One of the best tours, available in the area, is the Journey Behind the Falls. During your trip, you are taken down a 150-foot elevator into 130-year-old tunnels, which has been carved from the bedrock.  After a bit of a walk, you arrive at the front of the Falls in line with where the water comes crashing into the pool at the bottom. It is a surprisingly exciting experience.

Take a helicopter ride

If you have older children, it might well be worth investing in a Niagara helicopter ride.  Typically the flights take around about 12 minutes and there is room for six passengers on each ride.

Attend a magic show

The Magician Greg Frewin puts on a Vegas-style show which is sure to entertain the whole family. His animals certainly make the show interesting, especially the tiger.

Visit the Butterfly Conservatory

If you are looking for something more relaxing to do, a visit to the huge butterfly Conservatory is a must. It’s just a short drive from the waterfalls. There is also an interesting tour available which takes between 10 to 30 minutes to complete.

Treat everybody to a Fallsview meal

There are some really great restaurants in the area, many of which cater specifically for children. However, as a family treat, you could take them to enjoy a meal with a view of the waterfalls.

Play a round of Clifton Hill Dinosaur Adventure Golf

If your family likes mini-golf, head off to Clifton Hill.  The Dinosaur Adventure golf attraction is particularly good. You might also like to play Wizards Golf, which is lit up in the evenings.

Go up in the Skywheel

There are lots of ways to get a view of Niagara Falls. One of the best is from the Skywheel. It takes you up 175 feet and is fully enclosed and air-conditioned.

As you can see, there is no shortage of things you can enjoy doing as a family in and around the area. The above really is just the tip of the iceberg.

Review: Rimless Glasses From Online Opticians UK

Readers of this blog will know that I am very particular about my glasses and purchasing any new pair requires quite a bit of to-ing and fro-ing and usually an eye test before I commit to spending what generally amounts to a not inconsiderable amount for them.  So it was with some trepidation that I agreed to review a pair of rimless glasses from Online Opticians UK.

My current frames are all made of lightweight titanium with the thinnest possible lenses and anti-allergy nose pads to avoid the remotest chance of irritation.  I hate heavy glasses as my nose is very sensitive and I cannot bear the burning sensation which these create.  I was, therefore, keen to try Online Optician’s price-friendly offering of a very similar frame type and lens style – from the Superlite range, a pair of Superlite 37 Titanium Rimless Glasses.

Although I often order contact lenses online, this was my first time ordering glasses and to do this you will need your current prescription which your optician is obliged to let you have.

Now, since it is recommended that you have an eye test every 2 years to check the health of your eyes, if your prescription is close to hitting this age then it would be worth having your eyes retested before you invest in lenses which don’t give you the best vision.  You may be entitled to a free eye test on the NHS if you meet certain criteria.

You will also need to know a piece of data that you may well have to return to your optician to get – as, in my experience, it is seldom measured during a routine eye test – it is called pupillary distance or PD.

This is the distance in millimetres between the centre of one pupil to the centre of the other and having a correct PD on your glasses prescription ensures that you are looking through the ideal spot in your lenses.

Now there are instructions on the website to explain how to measure pupillary distance yourself but I prefer to have an accurate measurement done by someone qualified.

So, before ordering lenses online, make sure that you have an up-to-date prescription which includes your PD.

Ordering your specs with Online Opticians is, however, quite simple and the website takes you through 4 stages in the ordering process.

Step 1 select your frame

The first step is to select your frame and you’ll need to check your measurements.  The easiest way to do this is to use an existing frame and compare the dimensions online.  You’ll need to check three measurements – eye size, arm size and bridge size.  Discover how to find your glasses measurements here. Online Opticians recommend that you order frames which are +/- 4mm of your existing frames.

Some frames also have different colour options.  The Superlite Rimless 37 is only available in bronze.

Step 2 select your lenses

Distance, Reading and clear lenses are free but there is a surcharge for the 3 levels of varifocal frame offered by Online opticians.

I will be honest and say that getting a varifocal prescription just right is something that, personally, I would rather do face to face with an optician in person due to the complexity of my requirements.

For that reason, I opted for distance lenses as it is always useful to have a spare pair for driving or just to have in your bag.  As a contact lens wearer there are still those moments of “I wish I could take them out and put my glasses on” when, for example, dust or dry eye hits or, worse, you get something in your eye which then irritates for ages afterwards.

Depending on which Superlite frame you choose, the lens shape varies so you need to look at them all to choose one that you think will be the most flattering.  I chose this frame as the shape is closest to my current specs.

Step 3 choose any lens option

Next you need to decide whether you wish to add any of the options in the online form the website presents you with.  Simply click to display a range of options but note that all of these incur a small additional charge and you do not have to select any of them.

For example, there’s a specific lens option if you are going to wear your glasses for driving.  You may require an anti-scratch or anti-glare coating, or an accessory like a cord or chain.  You can even have a coating to protect your eyes against blue light from digital equipment and, of course, you can choose to have a thinner lens or even an ultra-thin lens.

I am a huge fan of thin lenses because they reduce the weight of the frame on the nose and avoid that ‘milk bottle’ look.  And, for me, an anti-scratch and an anti-glare coating are non-negotiable – especially when you have kids.

Step 4 add your prescription details

With your prescription to hand, simply enter the measurements one eye at a time starting with the right.

For both eyes you will need to know:- sphere, cylinder, axis, and Add (near) and as mentioned, pupillary distance (one measurement covering both eyes).

Take your time and double-check your input to make sure you’ve got it right.

There is also a form field for you to add any extra comments.

You will then need to agree to Online Opticians terms and conditions before you finally order your glasses safe in the knowledge that there is a 100% no-quibble money-back guarantee. Delivery is free on all orders over £64.95 and payment is via a credit or debit card or Paypal.

Orders are despatched within 3-5 working days depending on the complexity of the prescription or specific requirements.

I particularly like that Online Opticians donate a pair of glasses for every pair they sell to help eye care charities in Burma, Ghana and Zambia.

After placing my order, my glasses arrived in around 5 days and came with a sleek black case, cleaning cloth, lens cleaner and, as a nice extra touch, a miniature screwdriver to tighten the frame screws.

The lenses were immaculate and the prescription was spot on and, whilst the titanium frame was not of the same quality of the usual higher-end brand I wear, it was perfectly acceptable for the price point of £79.95.

There was only one small detail which wasn’t quite right and that was the lugs housing the nose pads were not entirely symmetrical and the nose pads themselves were smaller than the ones I prefer. This means that the glasses do not sit entirely flat on my nose.

Neither of these is insurmountable and any frame will need to be fitted properly, no matter where you buy it.

This does mean, however, that if you do buy glasses online, you may still need to visit an optician to have them correctly fitted.  Whilst tightening the frame screws is something you can do yourself, altering the nose pad lugs and changing the nose pads is definitely not.

Most opticians will make these alterations for you free of charge, although I always think it’s a bit cheeky asking if you haven’t bought the specs there.

Would I buy glasses online again?  To be honest, no.

I prefer the personal service I get from my own local optician.  He knows how my prescription has changed over the years and exactly how I need my glasses to be fitted.  He also knows that I need silicon nose pads as I am allergic to other types.

That said, if you are looking for a replacement or spare pair or you can tolerate pretty much any frame, then online opticians are ideal.

Make sure though, that you get your eyes tested by an optician you trust – and that you get a fresh prescription every two years.

Not least because an eye test can flag up other problems with your health which need dealing with as soon as possible.

How to Plan the Perfect Christening

Trying to plan the perfect christening? Your child’s christening is a precious and joyous event. Therefore, it makes sense to take your time to thoroughly plan the occasion beforehand to ensure it runs perfectly on the day and you can really take the time to enjoy and cherish the day. It does only happen once after all.

Planning a christening today isn’t as easy as it used to be. Now, you need to cater to a wide range of beliefs and modern traditions. So, if you’re looking to plan the perfect christening, below you’ll discover some great ideas to help get you started.

Ensure you plan religious and non-religious activities

One of the main challenges of planning a christening today is trying to make sure it caters to everyone. Not everybody attending will be religious, so it’s important to make sure you’re providing activities that can include everyone.

One of the best tips you can follow is to make the christening personal to you. Many families are now choosing to go with strings or singing over traditional organ music for example. You can also swap some of the hymns for personal readings. Finding ways to cater to everyone isn’t always easy but it will ensure everybody can enjoy the day to its fullest.

Include a few fun games for entertainment

Once the ceremony is over, why not kick start the reception with a few fun games? There is likely going to be a mixture of adults and children attending, so making sure you have plenty of entertainment for the kids is essential.

Board games tend to work well, and colour-in tablecloths can also be a great way to keep the kids entertained. Some families also choose to hire out a bouncy castle which is an effective way to keep the kids out of mischief.

Having a theme for the day is also a good way to keep kids entertained, for example, a jungle theme can mean you could have face paints and costumes. Along with animal-based games, like sleeping lions and a safari animal scavenger hunt.

Finger foods based around your theme can also help to make the day even more special.  Every little helps when it comes to making the day the most memorable it can be.

Offer mementoes of the day

A christening is a special occasion, so why not mark it by offering mementoes of the day to your guests? A personalised invitation to the day means that your guests will have something to remember it by.  You could also provide disposable cameras on the day so guests can capture their own precious memories along with helping you to see more of the day, you can only be in one place at a time after all.

Overall, planning a christening can be hard work but it isn’t that difficult to ensure it caters to everyone. The above are just a few of the things to consider when trying to plan the perfect christening for your child.

6 Ways That You Can Make Use of Your Summerhouse

Having a summerhouse in your back garden can be a great way to get out in the sun and enjoy some fresh air. Summerhouses are often made of wood and they come with plenty of windows so that you can let as much sun in as possible. But how can you use your summerhouse to make the most of your investment and have lots of summer fun into the bargain?  Here are some ideas.

How can you use your summerhouse? - garden chairs outside summerhouse

How can you use your summerhouse?

A Reading Area

One of our favourite ideas for using your summerhouse is to enjoy some light reading. If you make your summerhouse comfortable enough, you’ll be able to pass many hours as you get into your new favourite book. This is a great way of getting yourself outside in the fresh air and you won’t have to worry about the sun getting in the way of your reading as you’ll be able to enjoy shade when you want to. We think that using your summerhouse as a reading area is a great idea if you want to have some quiet, alone time away from your children.

For Entertaining Guests

If you don’t yet own a summerhouse, then the summerhouses found here from Buy Sheds Direct are great for entertaining your friends and family and they will be so impressed when you show them how nice you’ve made it. If you want, you can enjoy some outdoor dining but away from the birds and bugs that might normally be attracted to your barbecue or your sandwiches. We also love that summerhouses are great for having a drink in the summer and your guests will love how this outdoor area is almost like visiting a beer garden, but for half the price!

An Art Studio

If you like to do a bit of art or crafts every now and again, why not do it outside in the fresh air? A summerhouse can be a great way of taking your art to the next level and enjoying the peaceful surroundings that your garden presents. You might even find that your paintings dry quicker or you can get some inspiration from your plants or the view of your home itself. You’ll need to plan your art studio carefully and try your best not to ruin the woodwork with any sort of paint. You can do this by adding a sheet to the ground or getting yourself an easel to paint on.

An Outdoor Office

Working at home is never fun but if you can work outside when you have extra work to do, you might be able to muster up a little more motivation. The great thing about using a summerhouse as an office is that the windows can let in plenty of natural light, meaning that you’ll be in good working conditions. You can also add a nice desk and comfortable furniture and soon you’ll have the outdoor office that you have always dreamed of.

A Hobby Area

If you have a hobby like knitting or sewing, you could easily make use of your summerhouse and get focused on your hobby. As long as you have the space you need to get stuck in, you’ll enjoy spending time outside, improving your skills and creating something great. You could even practice your musical instrument out in the summerhouse without worrying about disturbing your family members in the house.

A Kid’s Den

Our final way that you can use your summerhouse is to create a den for your children. Having an outdoor space that your children can use to have fun or to get creative in can be really exciting for them. There are so many ways that you can do this, you could add a games console or even turn it into a screen-free zone. The choice is up to you but make sure to consider what your children would like to do in the summer house.

Final Thoughts

There are so many different things that you can do with a summerhouse and there is no reason why you shouldn’t make use of your summerhouse today. Why not consider taking your hobby outside and teaching yourself a new skill or practising an old one. You could even turn this into a place that your kids love to spend time and get outdoors with their friends. If you’re the type of person who likes to get a bit of work done at home, you’ll love creating an outdoor office as you’ll get to do the work but with the sun shining through the windows of your new summerhouse.

If you already have a summerhouse, make sure that you don’t ignore the fact that it can be used for so many different things. Your family and friends will love this new space and you will too!