Have you heard about Treat Trunk?

I don’t know about you but this is the time of year that I think “If I see another piece of chocolate I am going to heave”.  What is it about Christmas that means we feel we are neglecting our family if we don’t have 17 different boxes of chocolates or chocolatey snacks on the coffee table?  Or a whole basket full of crisps, wasabi peas, peanuts etc? Yep, by

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Toby Carvery do takeaway, who knew?

Not me that’s for sure. True fact, my first job was in a Toby Carvery.  Working on Sundays whilst at college it was my job to “man the rumbler”,  the massive machine that peeled sackfuls of potatoes so we could then chop them into roasties.   It was 1986 and I can’t hear Starship’s “We built this city” without being taken back to that kitchen in Peterborough.   Since the

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The Upside Down House

If somebody says to you they are off to the upside down house you would be forgiven for thinking they meant a house where the kitchen is downstairs, and the bedrooms are upstairs.   Or that there has been a disaster with somebody’s caravan falling off a cliff and landing on its roof on the beach below. In Bournemouth, however, this is an actual upside down house.  Well to be

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The 72 things I learned in 2018 — Part 2

  Welcome to part 2 of what I learned in 2018.  I didn’t mean for this to be in two parts but part one was pushing 3000 words so it was time to split it up before people started reading and feel asleep.  If you missed Part One, click here The world stopped for a while when the news broke that Kate, a mum of two, a daughter, a dear

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The seventy two things I learned in 2018 — Part 1

  For the most part 2018 was rubbish.   I certainly won’t be remembering it with any affection, that’s for sure.  But in amongst all the poop, there were some lovely moments.  Such as seeing Caity get married, it really was the most perfect day and she looked stunning.   Mr B and I celebrated ten years of marriage.   My granny had seventy people sing happy birthday to her

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The Night Before Christmas at Mottisfont.

When I recently wrote about all the things happening around Hampshire in National Trust houses this month, one grabbed my attention more than any other.   The Night Before Christmas is one of my favourite poems, and Mottisfont is one of my favourite National Trust properties. Win Win and a great excuse for a morning out with my BFF and our cameras Mottisfont The Night Before Christmas 24 November –

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Getting your Christmas tree from Christmas Forest, a review

My family thought I had gone mad when I said that we would be getting our Christmas tree at the end of November.   Putting put the Christmas tree was always a Christmas Eve event for me as a child.   I would decorate it with my folks, and then I would go off with each of them separately to help them wrap presents.   Feeling quite smug that I

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Visibly Vegan candles — a review

I must admit I thought I knew quite a bit about being a vegan.   Not that I have ever been one, though I was veggie for a while as a teenager.  I know that it means that along with the obvious meat and eggs it also means you can’t have honey, wear leather shoes or have gelatine sweets.     I didn’t realise, however, that it goes as far

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#Gifted

This might be a controversial one but here goes.   I don’t like the term #Gifted. To be fair it might not be something that is even on your radar, so let me explain. Us bloggers, or influencers as we are increasingly being referred to, are required by the ASA to mark anything that we have been paid for, or sent for inclusion in a blog social media, as an

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Dear Deborah Ross

Help me out here Deborah.  Why did you feel it necessary to pen a column in the Times this week where you said that influencers should be relabelled “Detestable Freeloaders”?   Well I know what brought it about, your watching the programme about Cliveden and the inclusion of two influencers called Katie and Ben, but why did you have to give them (and all other influencers) this new moniker and

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Experience a sparkling and colourful Christmas at National Trust places in and around Hampshire

  If you’re looking for somewhere special to escape the high street crowds this Christmas, consider a visit to a National Trust place. Our historic houses in and around Hampshire feature sparkling decorations and Christmas trees, fresh winter greenery and festive trails. Outside, you’ll discover beautiful garden landscapes filled with winter colour and scent. Classic Christmas stories are brought to life at Mottisfont and Uppark, and there’s a festive murder

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Advent calendars, all with next day delivery

Let’s face it, I can’t be the only one who hasn’t quite grasped the idea that December starts at the weekend, can I?  Can I?  Anyone?  Bueller? Which means I may have been a bit slow off the mark with advent calendars.   And I know that the cardboard ones I had as a small child aren’t really going to cut it.  Even the ones I had that were covered

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