How often do you shower? I had a boring old press release fall in my inbox the other day about showers.

*yawn*

It was 95% dull, but there was one fact that did stick out – apparently the average person in the UK has five showers and three baths per week.

I had to re-read that just to make sure.

It’s not five showers or three baths, it’s five showers and three baths. That’s more than one wash of some sort every day. That means there’s at least one day during the week where this average person thinks to themselves, ‘you know what, I had a bath this morning, but I’m going to have a shower too!’

How often do you shower? Do you fit in three baths a week?

I reckon I average four showers and zero baths. Apart from quite possibly making me a bit rank, it also must mean that somewhere there is a person having six showers and six baths a week, to balance out me, which seems excessive to say the least.

The truth is that I really am not a fan of washing. I hated it as a child and my parents are very fond of reminding me that my Dad used to have to carry me upstairs over his shoulder to the bath while I screamed ‘don’t make me do it!!’

I thought I’d grow out of it, but I haven’t. I do it obviously, because I have to, but I don’t enjoy it. I don’t ever think ‘Oooh, lovely, I’m going to have an amazing long shower, that’ll be nice.’  View Post

Image By Oksana Kuzmina

Staying on top of your oral health has a variety of benefits, from giving you a confident smile to prolonging your life. Dental experts can all agree on one thing: taking preventative measures and being disciplined with your oral hygiene is the best way to care for your teeth.  Below is a list of the 5 top tips to keep your teeth healthy and healthy for a lifetime

1)      Find a Good Dentist

It is recommended that the average adult visit the dentist around every 6 months.  These regular visits include a check up, a clean, and any treatment that may be needed.  This recommended frequency, however, it is too often neglected.

Whether you are too busy or you have dentist anxiety, it is time to shift your thinking to get into a good routine of visiting a dentist.  Maybe you don’t have one that helps you remember that your check up is approaching.  Finding a trusted dentist is the first step to better oral health.  Star Health is a highly recommended and trusted dentist in Prahran, Melbourne.  They can assist you with all your dental needs from a clean up through denture fittings.

2)      Oral Hygiene Routine

From the days when your first baby teeth starting popping through, you have (hopefully) been taught and encouraged to develop a good oral hygiene routine.  These healthy habits around oral hygiene developed at a young age will make a huge difference as your teeth age and require even more attention.

In addition, dental costs can be very expensive if you ignore the importance of good oral hygiene.   It is recommended that you brush, floss and rinse twice a day.  While it is understandable that sometimes life happens and you fall asleep watching a movie and forget to brush, make sure you do your best to maintain the basic daily habits.

3)      Use the Correct Toothbrush

Isn’t it crazy how many toothbrush options there are at the supermarket‽  Your dentist can help you with what brush is best for your teeth.  Someone with braces will require a special brush, and a small child will need to use a soft bristled brush with a small head.

You can choose between manual or electric, soft or hard bristled.  Your toothbrush should be replaced about every three months, and be sure to rinse it after every brush to avoid build up.

4)      Brush and Floss Properly

Just owning the right toothbrush won’t keep your mouth healthy; you need to know how to use it.   Your oral hygiene routine should include proper techniques on how to brush and floss effectively.

For brushing, you need to hold the toothbrush at a 45-degree angle and brush back and forth in short strokes.  Don’t forget to brush your tongue!  For flossing, use 18-24 inches of floss, wrap it in a C-shape around the tooth and be sure to get under the gumline.

5)      Watch your Diet

A healthy diet is essential for overall health, and oral health is no exception.  What you eat can erode or strengthen your tooth enamel and gums.  Lean proteins such as fish, poultry, red meat and eggs help build and protect tooth enamel.

Dairy such as milk, yoghurt and cheese (be sure it doesn’t have a bunch of added sugar!) is loaded with calcium and protein for stronger teeth. And water is the best beverage of choice as it continuously cleanses the teeth of food particles and doesn’t dehydrate the mouth or flood it with sugars and harmful enzymes.

We are all guilty of stumbling into the bathroom like a zombie on our way to bed and doing a mediocre job at brushing.  While this is acceptable once in awhile, it should not be the norm.  Creating a healthy oral hygiene routine that is really purposeful in trying to maintain oral health and prevent dental issues will may seem like a monumental effort at 11pm, but it will make a world of difference in the long term.

After you lose your baby teeth and your adult teeth grow in, you aren’t given another chance.  These teeth are meant to last you a lifetime, so give them the respect and attention they deserve.

In association with Poundworld

About a month ago a new shop opened in our town. A Poundworld Plus. To say that Belle was excited is putting it mildly – discount shops are on of her very favourite things, alongside delivered pizza, shows about vampires and chocolate chip brioche.

One of the first things we bought in our new Poundworld was cat harnesses. Basically Belle wants a dog, but I don’t want a dog, so she’s convinced that she’ll be able to take the kittens for walks, if only she can get them excited about wearing a harness. Unfortunately, as we discovered when we got home, it’s actually very hard to get a cat excited about wearing a harness, especially when at first you put it on wrong, and they can’t walk properly.

That said, they were probably more excited about it than they were when Belle tried to get them interested in going for a walk in a kitty carrier.

cat in a cat carrier

Have you ever seen a cat look less impressed?

The most exciting trip to Poundworld to date though has been the one that Belle made with the rest of the prom committee from school. They are organising a year 7 Halloween party to raise money for prom, and it coincided with Poundworld asking if we wanted to check out the Halloween collection in store, and well – how perfect?? The rest of the committee were VERY excited to have a decorations budget, and so off they went.

I have to say, that I was genuinely impressed by the Halloween range in our Poundworld store. Normally with these kind of things you get maybe half an aisle, with the usual slimy spiders and pumpkin shaped baskets for trick or treating, but the selection was VAST. There must have been a good 20 metres of shelf space taken up with Halloween things, and loads of stuff that I hadn’t seen anywhere else. Plenty to get the (year 7 ) party started. View Post

Post in association with Iceland

They say there’s no such thing as a free lunch but they, whoever they are, are wrong.

Wait what? You CAN get lunch for free?

Why yes. Yes you can. With the Iceland bonus card.

Iceland Bonus Card

Let me explain.

You will have realised by now, if you’re a regular reader, that I’ve become a bit of an Iceland convert, ever since I realised that Iceland was about more than frozen kebab pizzas. I’ve been educated about the benefits of frozen food in terms of freshness and not needing artificial preservatives and let’s be honest, it didn’t take much to convince me on the convenience front either.

So what is the Iceland Bonus Card then?

The Iceland Bonus Card is a savings card. You pick one up in store, register it online, and then every time you go shopping, and fancy tucking a bit extra away, you can ask the cashier to top it up. You can add money to your Bonus Card through the Iceland website too. Easy.

Then, when you’re next shopping, either in store or online, you can choose to use some or all of your balance to pay your bill. Pretty straightforward yes?

Except here’s the bonus aspect of the Iceland Bonus Card – for every £20 you save, Iceland will give you an extra pound for FREE. Just like that, automatically. Greggs sausage and bean melts are on offer at the moment in Iceland – 2 for £1 – so that bonus pound could LITERALLY buy lunch for you AND a friend.

(If you have never eaten a Greggs sausage and bean melt before then WHAT IS THE MATTER WITH YOU?? That’s the food of the Gods right there. Oysters? RANK. Greggs sausage and bean melt? HELL YES.)

What could I use my Iceland Bonus Card for?

CHRISTMAS! View Post

If you are in debt right now and finding it hard to pay all of your debts, you might think that the best solution to your dilemma is to file for bankruptcy. But there are actually other options aside from that.

You may want to enter into a trust deed instead. A trust deed is a voluntary agreement between you and the people you owe money to. With a trust deed, there is usually less restriction than when you have to apply for bankruptcy.

  1. It may not include all your debts – not all debts can be included in the trust deed. You need to do your research if you want to be sure that you can add your particular debt to the agreement. You can look for the information online, as there are many sites that give facts and information. Check out Creditfix – Trust Deed for more helpful facts about it that you should know.
  1. It is not a way to lessen your debts – you need to understand that entering into a trust deed will not lessen the amount of money you need to pay. You may find advertisements ensuring you that your debt will be slashed by half when you go with a certain company, but that is not the truth. A trust deed is just a way for you to be able to pay the debt over a period years without having to give up too many assets or filing for bankruptcy.
  1. It may not be available for everyone – a trust deed is only available for people who live in Scotland. If you reside in England or Wales, you need to enter into an IVA or Individual Voluntary Agreement instead. Also, your debts need to add to a certain amount for you to be approved for a trust deed. If you only a few thousand pounds of debt, and you only owe one creditor, it is possible that you will not be approved.
  1. It would be advisable to not take out another loan until you are done paying – you need to realize that your credit rating may not go up during the time that you are paying. Most credit reference agencies will have the information about your trust deed for up to six years. It would be smart to not get any further loan during the time period. You already entered into the trust deed because you were heavily in debt, so it would not be a good idea to owe more people money when you are not yet done with paying your precious debt.
  1. It’s important that you immediately contact your trustee regarding changes in your income – you will be asked about your disposable income for the trust deed. Disposable income is your income minus your expenses per month. IF there will be changes in your income, for example, you lost your job or you had a child, you need to go to your trustee and tell them about the changes so that you can come up with a solution that will help your situation.

family car game ideas

It’s all too easy these days to just let the kids play on their tablet, or watch DVDs in the back of the car while on a road-trip, but sometimes it is nice to make use of time spent travelling as a bonding session for the family. To achieve this you are likely to need some good old-fashioned car games that include all the family, to help pass the time and help create some memories. Here is a list of some of our favourites:

Restaurant Race

Parents.com offers up this idea as a game that can be played throughout the journey which encourages children to take notice of their surroundings as you travel. To play, before you set off allow each member of the family to choose a restaurant, fast food establishments such as McDonald’s or Burger King etc will work better, and tell them that they have to keep an eye out on the journey for their chosen food outlet. Agree on a number of points to be awarded if they see an actual restaurant, see the logo on a sign or even if they hear it mentioned on the radio. You could play for the whole journey or impose a time limit and see who has the highest number of points at the end.

Paper Telephone

This game can’t be played by the driver as it requires some drawing, but maybe you could set the kids off playing this game if you need some quiet time. For this game, you will need to buy some drawing pads. Give three or more players a drawing pad and ask them to all draw a picture at the top of a separate piece of paper before passing on. Each player then writes a caption sentence underneath the drawing they’ve been passed and then folds over the drawing so only what they’ve written can be seen. They should then pass the piece of paper onto the player who hasn’t seen it yet, and they should draw their own picture to go with the caption and then fold this so only their picture can be seen and pass on, keeping going until the sheet is full. Then they can unfold and find amusement in the way that the story panned out between them.

The Number Plate Game

This game from the AA is wonderful for encouraging active imaginations. Each player should choose a car number plate of a passing car and memorise the last three letters. These letters are to be used as inspiration for a story. So, use the first letter to create the name of the main character, the second to determine an item or animal in the story and the third to decide something that the character could be doing in the story. After you’ve all had a turn you can have a vote on the who came up with the best story and then have another go.

My Cows

This idea from Mommy Poppins is great for rural driving. In this game, each player needs to collect cows, with the winner being the player with the most cows. You collect cows by being the first to spot them. So, if you pass a field of cows the first one to shout, “My Cows”, wins the number of cows that you estimate are in the field. You can use a landmark such as a bridge or a pub to erase players’ cows. So, if you agree to use bridges, for instance, the first player to spot one can choose another player and erase all the cows that they have collected.