This post about my new DFS sofa contains three of my favourite things:

  • Winter
  • Cosiness
  • Sitting down

I’m not going to be one of those people, and call it Hygge just because I put a blanket over my knees, (I ranted about this), but I will say that I do like a cosy winter’s evening at home on the sofa.

What’s not to love really? Christmas is all done, spring is on its way, and in the meantime you have an excuse to put your pyjamas on at 4pm every day. Snuggle up with a cocoa, light some candles and crack out the Fresh Prince back catalogue. (Sooo excited that this is now on Comedy Central.)

My snuggling has been severely impaired until now by the fact that our biggest sofa was also the least cosy sofa in the whole world. It had no arms, no squishiness – what on earth is the point of a sofa with no arms? You may as well just sit on the floor and lean against the wall. That’s not very cosy is it? That’s like being 13 and on a school camp in an old mansion house and hanging out on the floor in the corridor because you think you’re cool.

No more corridor floor chic for me though.

I’ve got a new sofa from DFS – the Zinc 2 seater sofa, designed by French Connection. You see how comfy yet stylish I look?

DFS Zinc sofa review View Post

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amazon packaging

First up, I know. I know I shouldn’t shop at Amazon and that if I have a problem with Amazon packaging then I should go to my local shop with a string bag and chat to the greengrocer and generally be a better person. But I’m not, so let’s get over that. Sometimes I just don’t have time.

Okay, so Amazon packaging.

I have two issues.

Firstly, what’s with the tape designed to slice off your fingers??

I’m picturing a big meeting room with one of those annoying glass tables where you’re afraid to put your mug down in case you smash it. This is how I imagine the conversation going:

‘So, packaging ideas – hit me with them.’

‘Guys! I know what we should do! We should add some hidden cheese wire to our tape, so that the next time someone innocently slides their finger underneath it to try and open their parcel, they’ll just be left in a bloody mess!’

‘Genius! Then they’ll have to order antiseptic wipes and plasters – the ultimate upsell!’

It doesn’t stop there though. If you can actually open your parcel without hospitalising yourself then you’re in for a second treat.

It looks something like this:

amazon packaging

What’s that you say? That looks just like a massive box full of scrunched up paper?

It does rather doesn’t it?

Pull out the entire tree’s worth of paper though and inside you’ll find… what? A single book? A pencil? A box of tic tacs?

Seriously Amazon – what the hell is the matter with you? Why do you feel the need to send everything in boxes as big as the world when you know then you just have to fill them all up with paper??

It drives me nuts.

*orders colouring book from Amazon to calm down*

Images – Hadrian and Jeramey Lende both from Shutterstock

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I’ve got a guest post today from the master of all things money saving and making – Jon from The Money Shed. It sounds like a very cool app so well worth a look I’d say.

Pouch voucher app

Shopping online can be a hell of a drag sometimes. You find the item you want and usually the first thing that pops into your head is ‘Can I find this cheaper elsewhere?’ or ‘Can I find a discount code for this retailer anywhere?’

LUCKILY FOR YOU THE LATTER IS NOW A THING OF THE PAST.

YOU NO LONGER NEED TO GO SEARCH FOR VOUCHER OR PROMO CODES!

Pouch is an amazing new browser plugin that brings the voucher codes LIVE AND DIRECT to your web browser while you are shopping. So if there is an active voucher code out there then you will get presented with it straight away without a need to endlessly Google for an active one. View Post

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Coca-Cola Ekocenter Vietnam

Can I just take a little self-indulgent moment please?

About six months into my blog, back in 2010, I remember being sent a free tube of hand cream to review, and being SUPER excited. (I looked up the review and it’s pretty good actually, although distinctly lacking in the image department. If you want to read it you can here. I describe the smell of the hand cream as ‘a bit like an old people’s home – that sort of sterile, overcooked veg, soiled trousers smell’.)

My point is, I never started blogging with any intention of it being a thing, and so every day I’m grateful that this is now what I get to do as a real, actual job. I’d never in a million years have dreamt that my blog would take me to FOUR different continents. It’s such a privilege. I’d never be able to visit such extraordinary places otherwise and I feel honoured to get to do such amazing things and share them with you.

Okay, I’m done, you can open your eyes now.

So, Vietnam with Coca-Cola. (HOW COOL?!)

Coca-Cola Ekocenter Vietnam

I’ve drunk a lot of Coca-Cola in my time, but never been to Vietnam, or to anywhere else in Asia for that matter. I’ve developed something of a travel bug though in the last few years and so when Coca-Cola invited me to Vietnam to check out the work they are doing there to support local communities, well, I wasn’t going to say no was I? 

First up though, I want to address the elephant in the room. There may well be some of you who are reading this and thinking ‘yeah yeah, what do Coca-Cola care about community? They just want to sell Coke don’t they?’ View Post

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You’d think that someone who spent their working day online (me) would be a bit more savvy when it came to parental controls. You might imagine I’d be all over it, with all sorts of safety mechanisms in place to protect Belle from internet nasties.

The truth is that I’m actually pretty rubbish.

I was very strict initially about social media, and she had to beg me to let her set up an Instagram account when she was about 12 years old and was the last in her class to have one. She’s not on Facebook as far as I know, but I’m pretty sure she has a Twitter account. On the one hand, my attitude has been led by Belle. I know that she is probably far more safety conscious than me online and she just isn’t the sort of child who would want to access inappropriate material. (Yes I know, all parents say that, but it’s true.) She’s much more likely to be sharing photos of the girls from Dance Moms or watching make-up tutorials.

What I should take more account of though, is that a lot of the time it’s not just about what the child might want to be looking at, it’s what they will see accidentally. What they are searching for might be innocent enough, but it only takes a typo, or a double meaning, and the results can be far from innocent.

shutterstock_274178327

To make the point, I just googled the word ‘doggy’. Just that one word, on it’s own. It’s the kind of thing that any child might innocently search for, hoping for information about puppies. These were the top three results: View Post

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