Dizzy Miss James - A Travel / Food/ Lifestyle Blog

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12 Nov 2018

Make A Home Your Own


Your home needs to have your own mark on it. A stamp that only you could leave on any home that you go in to, and a stamp that truly does make a home your own. How do you think you’d do this? Well, you’d be surprised at the number of ways that you can actually make your home your own. And don’t worry, you don’t have to think about spending a fortune to do all of this. Yes, some of the things that we might mention might have a bit of a price tag attached to them, but then again that is to be expected when you have a home, is it not? The things we’re going to suggest to you won’t be hard to do or sort either. If you were wanting to spend a lot of money making your home your own, you might be better off thinking about renovating the many different rooms you’ll have. It’ll completely transform the home, make it look more modern, add more value to it...need the list go on? Well, that list might not, but the list of ways how you can make your home your own does, and here is just a few of them.

Make A Home Your Own by accessioning your living room

The Biggest Clear Out


Sometimes your home is just crying out for a clear out, but if for example, you’re moving into a home at the minute, then it’s definitely going to need a clear out. When the home you’re buying is the shape, location, and size that you want, it doesn’t mean that’s going to be the way that you want it inside. You might want to strip the kitchen back and get new cupboards, or even get the carpet pulled up so you can get some nice soft new carpet installed. Whichever it might be, you should definitely think about the cheapest bin hire that you can get in your local area. It saves you piling everything in your car and going to the nearest landfill site, a company will just come and do it for you. When thinking about clearing out your home, think about the things that really are clogging up your space at the minute. It might be a clunky TV stand or an old coffee table. See if you can replace things like this for more slimline and space-saving versions. You’ll actually be surprised as to what you can get if you clear some room! If you’ve been in your home a while, one area we would definitely recommend clearing out would be your cupboards and the fridge. You don’t realise how many things are actually stored here out of date until you do it!

Personalised Items


If you really want your home to be your own, then you’re definitely going to have to think about personalising some items. A little bit of DIY is going to come in to play here, and we think you’re going to do a great job at it. So, DIY tip number one, think about the little things like photo frames. Photo frames are the best way that you can showcase your memories around the home, whilst showing off something a little creative that you’ve done. How do you make a personalised one you ask, well, it’s easy! First of all, you’re going to need a completely plain wooden photo frame. The first thing you’ll do is paint it completely. Since we’re coming up to the festive season (sorry to mention it), you might as well think about colours such as gold, silver, or red. They’re just more Christmassy themed if you ask us. Then, you’re going to have to get a fine paintbrush out and paint whatever you might like on the photo frame around the edges. It could be something like a pattern, or you could simply go for writing down names, or a meaning for the photo frame. It’s little touches like this that you could make around the home that we really love the idea of.

A Homely Touch


Everyone loves a homely touch to the home, and boy do we know a few ways that you can ensure you’re using them. Homely touch number one, you need to make sure that you’re keeping everything as cozy as it can possibly be. How do you do that you ask? Well, you start by thinking about the rooms that need it the most, and in our opinion, that’s definitely the bedroom and the living room. The two rooms where you’re most likely going to spend all of your time during your time as a homeowner. So, for the living room, we think that tip number one is to get yourself a fireplace if you don’t have one already. We don’t think there is anything nicer than being able to come home, sit in front of the fireplace, read a book, and simply relax. Yes, we did mention reading a book when there would be a TV right there. Reading is just so therapeutic, and definitely when you’re sat in front of a crackling fire. Don’t worry, you can get pretty cheap electric ones that should do just fine for you. Then, have a couple of candles dotted around to get the home smelling homely. Candles are really good for both aesthetics, and for giving a vibe that’s just cosy and nice to be around! Anything that you really love about interior design, and anything you have spotted around the shops that you think would look so lovely in your home, just start implementing it. Everyone's idea of what a homely touch is is different. You just have to find out what the meaning of it is for you!


Make A Home Your Own by adding finishing touches to a room

Upcycling


Some people think that upcycling properly means you have to become a master in DIY. It definitely doesn’t mean that. Becoming great at upcycling is an art, but it doesn’t take long to learn the skill. It’s basically taking an old item that was most likely ready for the bin, and turning it into something that’s going to last another few years in the home. We’re going to focus on old furniture because out of everything, it’s probably the first thing that people would just replace without giving a second thought. We want to focus on wooden furniture as well because it’s just so easy to upcycle. There’s a couple of steps to the process, and step number one is giving it a good clean. There’s no point doing all that work to a piece of furniture when it is old and dirty! Then, you need to sand off all of the paint, if it had any. If not, sanding it down is a great idea anyway as it takes it back to basics. It’ll take all of the varnish off, and give you a platform to work with! Then, you need to go an buy yourself some paint, gloss, and varnish. Once purchased, give the piece of furniture one coat of varnish. It will help to maintain that natural wood colour, and it really will look great! Then, start with your layers of paint. You should do around two or three layers, making sure that every layer has dried before you put the next on. This will stop it from going all bobbly and uneven. Then, you just need to apply your gloss for that perfect finish! You can do this with pretty much any piece of wooden furniture and it would just look great.

A Pretty Little Garden



We want to talk about the garden because we just feel as though it’s sadly neglected. We’re always so focused on making the inside of our home look pretty because that’s where we think people will spend most of their time when visiting your home. So, why not draw the attention outside and create a whole new space for some socialisation. To make it pretty, you first need to give it a good clear out. Take out any dead plants, bring in any fallen leaves, and generally just spruce the place up a little. Then, mow the lawn and place grass fertliser and seeds down afterward. In a few weeks time, you’ll have greener grass that’ll be ready to be cut again. Then, go to your local garden store and buy plenty of plants. Buy all different colours to give your garden the best look. Once the flowers have spurted through, your garden really will be transformed into something pretty. Then, all you need to make sure you have is a great area to relax in. Just a nice garden furniture set would do, but you could take it one further and have some decking installed to make it look a little bit more upmarket!


So, after reading this, how do you want to make your home your own? We’ve given you tons of ideas that should help you to have the home that you’ve always wanted to have. Sometimes all it takes is a little bit of info, and some TLC to your home and you’ll have the best home that you could possibly have.

Do you have any tips on how to make a home your own? Let me know in the comments below.



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9 Nov 2018

Giving Your garden Some TLC, Even Though It's Autumn


Giving Your garden Some TLC, Even Though Autumn - flowers
Pixabay
You might be debating whether or not autumn (then winter, sorry) will ever end, and if you’ll ever want to venture outside again to enjoy some (very) fresh air. Well, fear not, spring will arrive again, and although the weather might be pretty chilly; the sun will re-emerge, and you might even miss the festive period. Therefore, you’re more than entitled to start getting excited about your outside space and all it brings to family life. If you’re lucky enough to have a garden at home; there’s no better time to start sprucing it up so that you and your loved ones can enjoy it fully throughout each of the coming seasons.


Grab your notebook, wrap up warm, and start spending more time in your garden; tidying it and giving it some much needed TLC. After winter has wreaked havoc, you will ensure that you have a beautiful haven to relax in for the months ahead. As long as it’s not pouring with rain; some time outside will do you good, and you’ll be improving the space in the meantime. There’s also nothing like a hot cup of coffee, out in the crisp fresh air; therefore, space doesn’t have to just be for the warmer months (what are they again?). The following are some tips for busy people who want to make the most of their garden so that when spring and summer finally do arrive; they have somewhere to enjoy their free time in the fresh air and (hopefully) sunshine.

Giving Your garden Some TLC, Even Though Autumn - leaves
Pixabay

Significant Tasks


It’s worth getting the bigger jobs out of the way so that you can concentrate on the smaller, decorative aspects of your garden as the weather changes. Therefore, you’ll want to invest in any fencing panels, skillion roofs, paving slabs, or new pots now, and get rid of the tired and broken versions as soon as possible. You’ll be amazed at how quickly you can transform a garden space when you’ve cleared out the old, and added the new, so try and do those tasks as soon as possible.

If the paint is chipped; wait for a dry weather day and start painting or staining your shed, fences, and benches to give them a new lease of life. Cracked flower pots need to go, so pop some new ones on your patio, and fill them with bulbs for some pops of spring colour when it arrives. You can pick up any debris, like fallen branches, leaves, and anything that was forgotten after the summer just is gone, and won’t make it to the next.

Environmental Fun


Now that you’ve got a clear and tidy space to work with, you can begin getting some inspiration and thinking about what you want to add to the environment. Seating and plant pots are an excellent way to divide the space in a back garden, not to mention a way to enrich an empty patio or patch of grass. Fill those pots with flowers, or low maintenance shrubs, or perhaps some that you can eat, like fruit or veg.

Whatever will add shape, colour, and scent to your haven will always make a great addition. The rest is up to you; try and ensure that you’re able to maintain the space, and can store things away when winter is in full swing, in the shed or garage. Keep on top of the plant maintenance, and you'll have a beautiful outside haven to enjoy during every season, even the chilly months ahead! 

Do you have any gardening tips for Autumn? Let me know in the comments below.













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8 Nov 2018

"Ahhh I'm Getting Married!" (Not Really) : How Wedding Planning Can Be Made So Much Easier


"Ahhh I'm Getting Married!" (Not Really) - Rose petals
pixabay

"Ahhh I'm Getting Married!"

That’s literally how you’re going to be feeling. If you're getting married, you have to admit that your whole life is about to change. Your friends will have warned you, your family will have warned you, and many other people that you will have come into contact with will have warned you. Not to mention all the articles you have read in the run-up to the big day. So what does this all mean? Knowing that your life is about to change can add to the stress and confusion of the whole day. If you were, to sum up, your wedding day, you would definitely call it stressful. Of course, there are so many points of happiness dotted throughout the day, and the more time you spend trying to plan it, the more you realise that this is going to be the happiest and most momentous day of your life. When you sit down take a moment and really start thinking about it, you'll realise all the things you have sort out and organize. This is why the whole thing is just so stressful. 

Enough talk about the stress planning a wedding can bring. Let's talk about the fact that you’re getting married and how the whole planning process can be made so much easier. And despite it all, in the end, you’re going to have the best day of your life!

Stress Busters


As we’ve already spoken about the stress of it all, we might as well carry on talking about it as wedding planning and stress come hand in hand. But rather than talking about how you’re going to have so much stress to deal with during this process, it’s time to talk about how you can get rid of it all. The best advice is to focus on the task at hand, rather than focusing on a million things at once. It's understandable why your mind might be all over the place. One minute someone is asking you if you have sorted one thing, the next someone is bringing up something else. Before you know it, you’ve got a whole list of things piling up, and your mind just can’t cope with it all. You then have to factor in that your partner is probably not going to help much towards this, so it’ll all be on you! So, if you want to try and bust some of that stress, you’re going to have to focus on one task at a time. Don’t rush yourself with any of it, because chances are, you’re probably not going to get married for a long while! Most people plan their wedding a year or so in advance, so it’s not like there’s any rush to get things done. As long as you secure your venue, just let everything else fall into place as it needs to.

"Ahhh I'm Getting Married!" (Not Really) - bride and groom wearing converse
pixabay

Sensible Planning


So, we’ve spoken about busting a little bit of stress, so now it’s time to talk about how you can sensibly plan your wedding. This sounds kind of boring, doesn’t it! But the more you think about how to plan your wedding to get the most out of it, the better the day is going to be. So, first of all, think about who you might like to be at your wedding. You’re obviously going to want your immediate and close family, so have a look at making some DIY wedding invitations to send out to those closest to you. For some people, just inviting close family is enough to ensure the day is perfect. However, for those of you who have always had a big wedding in mind, then you might want to think about the actual size of the guest list. It is all well and good wanting a big wedding, but you have to think about how much the size of a bigger wedding venue is going to cost, and how much it’s going to cost to feed all of those hungry wedding guests. If you can factor in all those things into your budget, then great! 

After the guest ordeal, it’s all about planning strategically. You need to make sure you've secured the venue and catering early on. The rest can all be decided closer to the time. It might be worth going dress shopping so you know what sort of style you would like. Make sure to plan ahead as buying the dress a couple of weeks before the wedding is not always a good idea. You might also like to secure the transport you’re going to use early on as well!

What To Do On The Day? 


Now you need to think about what you would actually like to do on your wedding day. Would you like your hair and makeup done professionally in the morning, or are you someone who would prefer to do it yourself? Having someone do it for you is definitely recommended. You’d get so much for your money, and after all, it’s your big day, you’re allowed to splash out and feel special. Getting yourself all glammed up before the big day is one great way of doing that. 

You then need to think about how you would like the day to go. Would you like a big wedding reception, or would you like to keep it quite formal with dinner after the ceremony and a few drinks? A lot of people like to go all out at this point. The whole stress of the day is over, and you can finally find a way to let your hair down!

"Ahhh I'm Getting Married!" (Not Really) - bride and groom
Pixabay

What Have You Always Dreamed About?

If you're really struggling to plan your wedding, then all you need to do is think about what you’ve always dreamed about. Even if your dream was to get married in a castle, who’s to say that isn’t what can happen! There are plenty of refurbished castles around the world that you could have your wedding in. 

As well as the venue for your wedding, you’re going to have to think about the location and whether you’d like it in the country you reside in, or one abroad! Destination Holiday weddings really are the best and are an option that should definitely be considered. If you can pick out the little things that you’ve always wanted at your wedding, and then make them a reality, there’s no reason why your day wouldn’t be perfect!

Are you getting married? If so what is your dream wedding day? Let me know in the comments below. 








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6 Nov 2018

Pairing Vegan Food with the Perfect Vegan-Friendly Wines


Pairing Vegan Food with the Perfect Vegan-Friendly Wines - wine glass
Pixabay

More people than ever are starting to follow a vegan lifestyle, meaning they consume no animal products at all. Maintaining this diet has many challenges, among them how food and beverages have been manufactured. Wine is a typical example of a product that vegans will look at very carefully. Everyone knows wine is made from grapes, but sometimes they are put through processes that involve the use of animal products. If you are a committed vegan you will need to know which ones are vegan-friendly wines, and which meals they will pair best with.

Not All Wines Are Vegan


It may surprise you to know that not all wines are suited to a vegan diet. They all start off in the same way, with grapes from the vine being pressed. However, some of them are then put through a process known as fining. In this process fining agents are added, which draw away large proteins and other elements in wines that have not aged. They also help to remove the cloudiness of young wines.

The problem is that some of these fining agents include animal products such as gelatine, fish proteins, milk proteins, crustacean shell fibre, and egg whites. This results in them no longer being considered suitable for vegans.

Find Vegan-Friendly Wines 


Finding vegan-friendly wines can be a bit like a wine quiz. You need to read each label with care and look for the processes that have been used in its manufacture. There are some vegan wines that still go through the fining process, but the difference is what the fining agents are made from. Look for ones that have been fined with clay or carbon, to know they are a safe part of your vegan diet.

Some wineries are now offering young wines without the fining process having taken place. It does mean they can be cloudy, but that only affects the look, not the taste.

The label should have all the information you need, but it really is a case of reading them as not all wines acceptable wines are marked vegan-friendly.

Pairing Vegan Food with the Perfect Vegan-Friendly Wines - wine bottle
Pixabay

Match Flavours Of Wines And Foods

Some people associate the type of wine they should have with the type of meat they are eating, but there are many of them that will be very enjoyable with vegan meals as well. You just need to think about how sour or sweet a wine is and how that will go with the meal you are preparing.

Things like stir-fried vegetables and veggie burgers go well with a light-bodied white wine, where a red wine goes better with olive based dishes. The most important thing is to choose a wine that will not overpower the flavour of the meal you are serving.

It is not a bad idea to keep a note of your successful pairing so that in the future you do not have to do all the research again. This will help you to shop more efficiently and will make it simpler to stick to your vegan principles.

Which vegan-friendly wines to you pair with vegan food. Let me know in the comment below. 




Pairing Vegan Food with Vegan-Friendly Wines



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9 Oct 2018

3 Quick Fixes For A Safer Household


Haalkab / Pixabay

Keeping the home safe and your family safe within it is something that is always going to be important to you. But knowing how to actually make that happen can be something else altogether, and it is surprising how difficult it can truly be. If you are keen to try and make some improvements in how well you look after your home and your family, then there are many places you can start. As it happens, however, there are a few things in particular which you might want to look into first to ensure a safer household. As long as you are focused on these, you should find that you can keep your house much safer at all times and that your family will, therefore, feel all the safer as well.


LUM3N / Pixabay

Fix Your Windows


If you have any problems with any of your windows, that is one of the first things that you should look into fixing. Finding some good quality glass repair specialists can be hard, but as long as you do track someone down you should make the most of those services and try to keep your home as safe as possible. The windows are clearly one of the most important parts of the home when it comes to safety, so it’s vital to make sure that you are dealing with any problems they might have as soon as possible. It could even be that you need to replace them in their entirety which, although drastic, is something necessary to ensure your homes’ safety on the whole.

Teach Your Kids About Safety


The more that your children know about safety and being safe in the home, the more likely it is that they will be and that the home as a whole will be safe too. You should start teaching them as young as you can about having a safe household, and what they should do in certain emergency situations, as the younger you start doing that the better. Teaching your kids is actually beneficial for not just them, but everyone in the home, so that is worth remembering if you want to make sure that your home is as safe as possible in the future. Too many parents fail to teach their children about safety from a young age, and it generally doesn’t bode well for their futures.

Entrust Yourself With The Neighbours


The statistics show that the more a part of your local neighbourhood you are, the more likely you are to remain safe from outside attackers and other things of that nature. It is therefore hugely beneficial to spend some time entrusting yourself with your neighbours. That could mean just spending time with them, or doing something for them every now and then. Whatever it takes, make sure to be a part of the neighbourhood as best as you can. It really will make all the difference in the world to how safe you and your family are in your home.

Do you have any tips for a safer household? Let me know in the comments below.










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