Last night I tweeted about how I had just washed down a multivitamin with a gin and tonic. I was pretty proud of myself for achieving such balance in my life. Very zen.

Legend of the Lost replied saying that it counted as a lifestyle cocktail.

‘A lifestyle cocktail??,’ I said. ‘Did you just make that up? Please tell me it’s not a real thing. (If it is I’m doing a blog post about it.)’

‘Just made it up,’ he replied, ‘I own it! But you may borrow it. Because you’re my favourite.’

So I am. Right now.

Here are six lifestyle cocktails I came up with that are basically guilt-free because they are just so goddamn good for you.


Vodka and Berocca

This was a suggestion from Nathan Dennis and it seems totally legit to me. No messing about – right to the good stuff. The only trouble is coming up with a name for it. I was trying to think of something that merged the names, Brangelina style, but all I could think of was The Verruca. I’m not sure it will catch on, except in swimming pools.

I’m picturing it a bit like this, but with bits of crumbled Berocca on the rim of the glass?

lifestyle cocktails

Photo by lindsay Cotter on Unsplash

View Post

There are countless mums who wish to earn a bit of extra income. Whether being able to better provide for the family or saving up money for a much-needed holiday, there are countless options at your disposal. Of course, some of these are more effective than others. A growing number of families have now entered into the world of online retail in order to enjoy an increased sense of liquidity. Having a game plan in place from the very beginning will enable you to make the most out of this interesting opportunity. Let’s begin by taking a look at the basics before moving on to examine why choosing the best enterprise ecommerce platform is a critical component of your success.

Online Business 101: Starting Off in the Right Direction 

Let’s assume for a moment that this is your first time considering such a venture. It is likely that you have a great many of questions which need answering. While some of these will become clear as you progress, there are other issues which should be defined from the very beginning. Try to answer these questions:

  • Am I starting an online business for money or fun?
  • How many hours can I dedicate to this operation?
  • Will family responsibilities get in the way of day-to-day tasks?

While these might seem rather basic, you would be surprised to learn that many would-be entrepreneurs fail to address such points. As a result, their goals remain unclear and the subsequent business model is bound to suffer as a result.

Now that you have addressed these details and you still wish to move forward, it is important to take a look at why enterprise e-commerce software is important.

Flexible, Scalable and Intuitive 

In a nutshell, e-commerce software is an electronic platform that allows you to better manage common concerns such as sales, marketing and client engagement. A website that does not contain such a program is very much like a store without a checkout counter. Not all systems are equal and there are some critical variables that separate the good from the bad. Metrics to examine ahead of time include:

  • Can the design of the platform be adjusted to suit my business?
  • How simple and user-friendly is its interface?
  • Can this software be combined with other platforms?
  • How much bandwidth am I allowed?
  • What type of support is available if I happen to run into any problems?

The bottom line is that you do not have to be a computer wizard in order to take advantage of the e-commerce systems currently available. Cloud-based providers such as Shopify offer a host of intuitive solutions and they provide you with a centralised means of controlling day-to-day operations. While you might not become a millionaire overnight, having the right tools and utilities at your disposal will vastly simplify the process. A sustainable source of income could therefore be only a few clicks away!

make money side hustle

At some point in life, everyone loses someone close.  This is the most difficult time imaginable and the pain felt is overwhelming. Although there is no right or wrong way of grieving there are more healthy ways to cope with the pain. Knowing the necessary steps can help you work through your emotions and come to terms with the loss.

How to cope with the grief

Grief is the emotional suffering that occurs when we lose something or someone of significant value. Death of a loved one is usually the cause of intense grief and takes time to heal.

Here are some of the measures that help in overcoming grief.


  • Allow the feelings


In the aftermath of loss, it is very normal to find yourself experiencing a number of different feelings. Suppressing those feelings is not advisable since avoiding them may prolong the grieving process. Do not shy away from expressing what you feel in an attempt to appear strong.


  • Seek support


There may be times when you will wish to be alone however it is necessary to gather support from close friends and family members. They will be a source of emotional support and comfort. The loss of a loved one leaves behind a void in the life of the survivor-making one emotionally vulnerable thus the need for a support time.


  • Know what to expect


Becoming aware of the feelings associated with grief can help you deal much better and help console others. By accepting the loss and the feeling that come with this process, you prepare yourself to heal much faster and adapt.


  • Allow the grieving process


Bereavement is a process that takes time and every person has his or her own pace of coping. Do not be in a hurry or put a time limit to the process. Remember it is a natural process. Allow yourself to experience the stages as they come knowing that after some time it shall pass.


  • Draw comfort from your faith


If you are a religious person, it is important to embrace the mourning rituals your religion provides.  Engage in spiritual activities that you believe in such as praying or meditation. These activities are very important since they offer solace and hope.


  • Seek help from a professional


At times normal grief may turn into something, which is hard to handle such as depression.  When you start to experience, the symptoms of prolonged grief seek help from a therapist or a counselor immediately.


  • Maintain a schedule


It may seem difficult to maintain a regular schedule after the loss of a loved one, it is important to maintain a simple routine that will help you deal with negative emotions. Some people fail to observe important things like eating, sleeping and hygiene, which is not advisable.

Final remarks

While the feeling of pain for your loss is necessary, there comes a time when you must go back to living your life. Learn to accept death as a reality. As time goes by, have faith that you will be able to move forward in life. You can find more comforting articles at SunLife to help you get through the tough grieving period after losing a loved one.

I’ve only been to visit Edinburgh once, to stay with friends, but I really loved my trip there and I’d definitely want to go back. Edinburgh is supposed to be amazing at Christmas but any kind of trip around that time is usually overshadowed by visiting my sister’s family for actual Christmas, in Dublin. We did talk this year about going somewhere in the UK but decided against it so maybe Edinburgh Christmas 2019 will be a thing. And then Cardiff 2020. Etc etc.

If I WAS planning a cool trip to Edinburgh, I’d definitely fill it with loads of unusual stuff to do. I’ve never really thought of Scotland as being the most hipster of locations but in the capital, there are lots of unusual, cool and Instagrammable things to do. If you’re looking for somewhere lovely to stay while you’re there, why not give serviced apartments a go? Staying in serviced apartments in Edinburgh gives you lots of flexibility, plus everything you need to make you feel right at home after a fun day of exploring the city.

So, as the kids say on YouTube, let’s dive right into it.

fun things to do in Edinburgh View Post

There comes a point in your life when you start to get excited when you see NEW things happening. A few months ago for example my neighbours opposite me had a new boiler installed, and I spent quite a lot of time at the kitchen window casually making a cup of tea or washing up or just sort of standing.

‘They’re bringing out the old boiler now,’ I’d shout into Belle in the living room.

She would answer me with silence because she is 16 and hasn’t reached the age yet where she cares about anything boring.

I’ve had a similar sense of excitement over the last couple of months every time I have driven through Taunton and seen work progressing on the new Hubbox restaurant. The space that it’s taken over has been empty for a long time, (I knew it as Wimpy, which I think says a lot), and it’s in a pretty prominent location, so it’s lovely to see it coming back to life.

We went along to their launch night a couple of weeks ago and were blown away by the size and the scale of the restaurant. They’ve knocked through into what was also the shop next door to Wimpy, so there’s masses of space downstairs and a first floor too, which has a slightly more casual vibe, with some comfy looking sofas and armchairs that would be ideal for day time coffees and sandwiches.

(My friend Paul did a little tour video on the opening night, in which I wave, so if you want a proper look inside then that’s worth a watch.) View Post

Belle sat her GCSEs in June this year, and so in September she moved onto college. It was a big move for her. I’m not going to go on about her struggles or anything, but I’m sure she wouldn’t mind me saying that she didn’t exactly find the last few months of school EASY. Basically she didn’t really go, so, yes, not easy. However, she passed all her exams, so onwards and upwards.

Belle starting college has been a bit of a fresh start for me too. Because I’ve been worried about her, and because it’s just the two of us at home, I feel that I’ve become a bit more controlling of things than I would normally be. Controlling is perhaps the wrong word – interfering maybe. I’m always asking her if she’s had things to eat and drink and how she slept and suggesting she go for a walk or read a book or wash some clothes. I nag and nag her not to be late for things, I remind her to do stuff that she should probably just remember for herself.

I’ve started to annoy even me.

With the start of college then, I made the decision to generally BACK OFF, because I know the theory – if she isn’t ever left to take responsibility for herself, she won’t see the consequences of forgetting to eat lunch or do homework or whatever it might be – and yet I’ve stopped putting it into practice. I’ve frustrated myself because encouraging independence has always been something that I thought I was really good at and yet I’ve found myself in this position where I’ve not done either of us any favours, because I’ve not left her to learn things for herself.

I need to do something about it because I really don’t want her to leave home in a couple of years and to be worrying that she will forget to eat.

What I want to know now then, is where do you draw the line with a child who is old enough to do things like leave home, pilot a glider and join a trade union, and yet forgets to clean her teeth, take her clothes out of the washing machine or DRINK FLUIDS?  View Post