Pines And Needles – A Family Tradition

When it comes to Christmas I’m sure that for many of you traditions are something that come hand in hand with this special time of year. From preparing the mince pie and milk for Santa to visiting the big man himself our family have a whole host of traditions that we added to with Pines and Needles a couple of years ago now.

Just before Christmas I told you all about the benefits of getting a tree from this amazing company from being able to select your tree from the comfort of your own home, the ease of it being delivered straight to your front door and even the option to have it completely set up and decorated for you.

For us though the decorating part is one of our traditions and as soon as the children came in and saw our grand tree in situ they wanted to get their hands on it and begin the decorating.

The 7ft beauty smelt as good as it looked and we all had such fun adorning each branch with our favourite decorations, even if getting the angel on top was a bit of a struggle!

One worry with real trees is that they won’t last the distance but ours is still going strong and will defiantly still be a focal point for our New Years Eve celebrations.

We really couldn’t recommend the Pines and Needles trees enough and I assure you if you get you order in for next year you won’t be disappointed.

* We were gifted this tree in return for this review and they are all my own, honest opinions.

Creating A Sleep Haven

A chair covered in clothes from rushing around in the morning, crumpled bedsheets from the kids using the bed as a trampoline, a dressing table that resembles more of a children’s play area than a place to beatify yourself.

Does this sound familiar to you? This is indeed how my bedroom looks 90% of the time and is a far cry from the peaceful haven I have always wanted to create.

I have now finally…well most of the time managed to reclaim my bed from the night time bed invaders and really want to have a place I can retire to where I can relax and collect my thoughts after a long day.

There are a few things that I am going to change to make it a place I want to spend time in rather than avoid.

Declutter: Clutter is one of the biggest causes of restlessness and I can fully understand how lying in bed worrying about the piles of clothes and dirty washing can contribute to a restless night.

Organising the wardrobe, getting unwanted items listed on EBay and banishing the washing to another room are all great ways to make it a tidier and more restful area.

Calming Colours: It is a well known fact that the brain reacts to different colours in different ways so choosing relaxing and tranquil colours such as green or blue are the perfect way to keep stimulation to a minimum.

Lighting: The harsh light that is created from the main bedroom light isn’t condusive to staying relaxed. Use subtle lighting from bedside lamps and dimmers to create a calm environment.

Also keep out the harsh morning sun with good quality blinds such a those from Roof Windows to allow those much needed lay-ins, if the children allow!

Smells: Allow the use of all your scences to come into play and fill the room with beautiful,relaxing scents.

Lavender is a perfect scent to add relaxation and this can come in the form of scented candles, air fresheners and dried lavender itself.

Bedrooms Are For Sleep: This is probably the thing I find the hardest to obide by.

Switching off from screen time, banning exercising or any other stimulating activity in the bedroom is a must…well within reason!

Get Cosy: Finally add as much cosiness as you can with scatter cushions, throws, comfortable bedding. Really anything that is going to make you feel cosy.

I’m going to put all of these tips into practice and hope that my little haven can be created and create a more restful nights sleep.

Keeping Safe With Those New Year Renovations


A New Year and a fresh start is still at the forefront of most people’s minds with renovations round the home being top of a lot of our lists.

I know for me the bareness of the house once all the decorations are down always spurs me on to getting on with all those DIY plans.

Renovating yourself is obviously the cheaper option and for me it gives a real sense of achievement once it’s done, but it can also come with a whole host of problems that in extreme circumstances be fatal.

We all traipse of to the DIY stores with visions and dreams in our head of what we are going to create with very little thought of how we are going to do this in a safe way.

I know that there have been many occasions where I’ve been found creating makeshift scaffolding to reach those tricky bits to paint or reaching for a knife to use as a screwdriver when the toolbox can’t be found!

Mesothelioma claims lawyers conducted a survey and out of the 2098 people asked a huge 45% said they would happily drill into a wall with only 5% of them seeing any danger in this.

Hiding behind those walls could be anything…including asbestos that can lead to all kinds of health problems including mesothelioma if you were to be exposed to it.

30% of these people asked didn’t even realise that exposure to asbestos can cause mesothelioma.

I have to admit that until I was shown this information I had no idea that coming across asbestos in the home was so common and will certainly now be something I think about before ploughing in as usually do!

Even somethings a simple as sawing boards of MDF can risk your health and I would certainly be part of the 4% that didnt realise this.

There are risks with so many things we do in life and this should certainly not put you off creating your dream home, but it is always good to be armed with as much knowledge as you can before you take on any new challenge.

*collaborated post


Finally Getting That New Bathroom

I have been driving my husband mad for months or actually more like years with my constant moaning about the state of our bathroom.

When we moved in I tried to spruce it up a little with a lick of tile paint, some cheap lino and a few fluffy towels.

Years down the line the tiredness is showing through, cracks are appearing in even more places, and a few pots of paints are no longer going to stand up to this job!

My head has been whirling and my Pinterest has been filling with more and more ideas everyday.

I have really fallen for the clean subway tile look with contrasting black grout. I want to keep everything sleek and uncluttered so it is easy to keep clean and tidy as we have a very busy family life.

With five children the bathroom is a much used room in the house and three boys means dirt and muck is a daily battle!

But aside from being somewhere to clean dirty children I wanted to create a little haven that I can escape to and relax once the children are finally in bed.

Its something I’ve not been able to do for many years and I’m really looking forward to being able to light a few candles and soaking away the stresses of the day.

I have had a vision of what I would like to see but this job has now been taken from my unskilled hands and is being passed over to the professionals.  

The creative side of things is something I love but a professional is a must for a job like this as things such a gas safety inspections that can be carried out after the work has taken place are so important for my peace of mind and the safely of my family.

I am hoping that all the work will be done before Christmas and will be able to show you all how we get along.
*collaborative post

A Hollywood Bedroom Theme For My Little Superstar

It’s been moodboards, paint tester and fabric swash galore in the house the past few months as number three plans her dream bedroom.

As she had just turned ten her tastes have matured and she is slowly wanting the soft toys and dolls to be banished in favour of dressing tables and jewellery boxes.

Although it makes me sad that she is my last little girl who seems to be fast tracking her way to those dreaded teenage years.  I’m also enjoying her growing independence and her strong mind that knows exactly what she wants.

Her bedroom had been a real mismatch for the past year and it now time to create a welcoming space just for her.

When it comes to decorating a  kids room there are always so many factors to consider, and for me this varies with each child.

For a preteen I think that the theme is very important.  All children go through phases of loving a special TV program or pop star but this can change in the glimmer of an eye and you are then left with a bedroom they no longer enjoy.

For number three her passion has been acting and singing for a long while and she is desperate for a Hollywood theme.

She loves the lighting and the stars that make up the Hollywood Walk Of Fame.

For me the huge amount of glitz that she is wanting at this age will probably be short lived so I have coerced her into the lighting against more muted tones of bare brickwork and wooden stars creating the Hollywood sparkle.

As they grow sleepovers become a regular feature so a trundle bed is the perfect answer as it allows you extra bed space without taking any valuable floor space.
This will be furnished with simple white bed linen and muted gold scatter cushions and maybe a few sequin ones thrown in for good measure!

Im sure it is the same for most people with little ones, storage is always an issue.  Pots of lip gloss and bath bombs are currently strewn across the room so pretty glittery boxes would be the perfect fit to store them away.

As I said the toys are being banished from eye shot but she is still a little girl at heart and I want this to stay for as long as possible so we will be hiding them away in wicker baskets so she can always get to them when needed.

I’m super excited to get going in this and I hope you will keep and eye to to see our final result.

In collaboration with homify