Christmas 2019

By the time you read this, I hope you’ve have a lovely time celebrating the festive season and are looking forward to the year ahead.

As I’ve done for the last few years (partly for my own memories, partly for those of you like me who enjoy a little nosey) here’s a bit of a peak at my Christmas Day and Boxing Day celebrations.

Christmas morning waking up at home (at 6.45am, the latest I think I’ve ever woken up on Christmas Day). After exchanging gifts listening to Christmas songs, we tucked into sausage sarnies and watched some festive TV.

Top, Joanie (one of my gifts from the Mr)

Quick change, tidied up the wrapping paper and it was off to see the family!

First stop was my grandparents house, they’ve been poorly this year so weren’t able to leave the house.

After that we headed to my sister-in-law’s for Christmas lunch with the wider family.

We all brought something along and laid it out buffet style, this year we were on turkey duty which was just a little bit scary but turned out really well thankfully!

I was the most stuffed I’ve ever been from a Christmas lunch

I just about managed to roll on to the couch and was put on childcare duty with my niece and nephew (tbh I think they were looking after me more).

After an hour I managed to enjoy a small bowl of my Mother-in-law’s sherry trifle (epic) and open the last of the presents for the day. We gifted our nephew with a table football and his little face was everything.

Boxing Day

This year was different to the norm, this time we hosted and I cooked!

To spruce up our not yet decorated dining area, I picked up these dark great charge plates from Dunelm and made a table centre using a garland I bought from Amazon threaded with battery operated lights and baubles picked up from B&M. I added in white candles (also from Dunelm and B&M) and some M&S Bucks Fizz served in the ice bucket from our home bar (which I promise I will write about at some point soon!)

From scratch, I made Moroccan lamb followed by panettone bread and butter pudding with cream.

If you’ve read these posts for the past 4 years, you’ll know this dessert is my stepdad’s showpiece so I wanted to give it a go to see if I could do a nice tribute to his years of hard work. And I did!

We did a few more presents and then moved to the couch for a brew and game of Cards Against Humanity

My brother won, however it confirmed what I already knew that my family are highly inappropriate and absolute filth!

I’m off work until the beginning of January and will be spending that time having more family gatherings (one at my mum’s new house with her in-laws, the other back at ours with my in-laws) time with friends and general relaxation.

If you have some time off too, I hope you’re able to use it in ways you enjoy. If you fancy more of a nosey, I’ve got a Christmas 2019 highlight on my Instagram which will likely have some presents on there too.

Thanks for reading,

J xx

FESTIVE, FOOD & FUN/ Christmas 2017

I hope you all had a lovely Christmas Day and are waking up for #BoxingDay feeling happy and content. As I did last year, I thought I’d share a few candid words and pictures of what I’ve been doing (FYI- the pic above is of my festive PJs, which are from Next).

This year was a bit different as we’re currently living in temporary accommodation, so the presents kind of spilled out more than usual! We treated ourselves to a new ‘snow covered’ tree  too.

We wake up at the same kind of time every day no matter what (we are rubbish at having a lay in!) so we get up, put on festive songs and open presents next to the tree with a mug of tea (served in festive mugs, obvs.).

Presents are lovely, but next comes my fave bit – Christmas Day brekkie! Every year we have sausage sandwiches in soft white baps (the sausages are ASDA Finest pork and apple, if you’re interested).

This year it was our turn to spend Christmas Day with my in-laws (we alternate every year) which is a bit different these days as we now have two little members of the family who are both adorable and excitable!

I didn’t load up my plate in a very insta-worthy manner, but when home-cooked food is delicious you kinda don’t care.

Highlights included my mother in-law’s stuffing and brother in-law’s mash potato, I had seconds of both with lashings of gravy. I finished off my epic feast with trifle, yassss.
Boxing Day lunch is always spent with my famil and my stepdad always cooks up something amazing!

This year was chicken tagine with cous cous followed by bread and butter pudding (which has become something of a festive family tradition) made with croissants and served with double cream.

I’m now having some much needed chill time at home with the Mr before the New Year begins – watching a mountain of DVDs, eating, generally being cosy and figuring out what my goals for 2018 will be. I hope you’re all enjoying some down time too; if not then I hope work isn’t too frantic for you!

Thanks for reading,

J xx

FITNESS & FUN/ Rock Up Hull

This is no ordinary blog post -not only does it include the sassiest new indoor activity in Hull, but it also features my first ever guest post! 

Rock Up Officially opens this week (22 March) in St Stephens shopping centre, and I managed to head over for a first look. Along with me for the ride was Mama Alice as well as my friend Suzy and her little girl Izzy. You’ll be hearing more from them later.

Rock Up by me – an adults day outAs someone desperate to get their fitness back on track this sounded like a different way to achieve this; after reading it could burn up to 700 calories per one hour session it sounded VERY appealing indeed!

In all honesty, I don’t think my mum really thought much about where I was inviting her to until she got there, but she and I were both super excited when we walked in to what is essentially a massive playground. See how excited she looks!

Both of us really like to try new things and feel that sense of accomplishment. Sadly, another thing we both share is that we’re both scardey cats when it comes to things like this! 

We dug deep and tried a few walls out, making a little higher up each time. The instructors were really patient and encouraging, advising which walls to start with and cheering us on.
I think the scariest bit is coming back down – basically, stick yo’ butt out and let go! Even from a couple of meters up that feels daunting, but we were in good hands and knew we would be just fine if we did as the instructors showed us.
I had a little go on the ‘Stairway to Heaven’ – nothing to hold on to on the way up, nothing to hold on to on the way down…simply step off. I say “simply” when it’s very clear from this picture that I found it anything but! My mum was actually shouting “jump to mummy!” 

I eventually made it just short of the top of one wall; if I hadn’t looked down and wasn’t shattered I would’ve been hitting that buzzer like a boss! 

We had lots of fun, felt like we had overcome a little of our fear, and definitely gave ourselves a workout! We can’t wait to go back and give it another try now we know what to expect.

Top Tips

– Wear light and comfortable clothing. Jeans were absolutely fine but definitely a t-shirt or similar on top as you really do work up a sweat. I may even opt for workout clothes next time

– Stay hydrated. Even if you’re not constantly climbing you still get pretty tired, it’s a pretty tough workout, so make sure you have something to drink to keep your energy levels high.

– Do everything exactly as they the instructors tell you. If not you may hurt yourself in some very unfortunate places. I think you know what I mean.

– Don’t. Look. Down.  

 Rock Up by Suzy – a family day out 

After being invited to tag along with my 5 year old daughter for a sneak peek and trial Rock Up before its official opening, we couldn’t contain our excitement. Izzy had done this before at a similar venue, but for me, I hadn’t rock climbed or abseiled since my early teens so my excitement was tinged with nerves. 

The place itself is very welcoming, the friendly staff are very helpful and nothing is too much trouble – suited for both the beginner and the more experienced, they want you to have as much fun as they do climbing! The brightly coloured walls are nothing but enticing, and designed to allow you to go as high as you feel comfortable. 

When it was time to tackle the walls, mum had to step up to plate and show there was nothing to fear. Unlike other climbing walls your lines are automatically counter weighted to you – don’t ask me how, it just works! – so when you’re ready to come down, you simply push away from the wall and gently bounce or glide back down to the mat. This goes against every rational thought and for me was a very mind over matter scenario and my nerves very nearly got the better of me. 

Hitting that button located at the top of each wall does gives a certain sense of triumph – just don’t look down before making your way to the bottom again! But once Izzy had seen mummy do it, she was off! 

My daredevil rock climber extraordinaire was in her element and didn’t stop until her hour climbing was up and to my amazement she even made it to the top too! Although she had no problem looking down, it was just me! Out done by a 5 year old – awesome ha-ha!

Every wall is open for trying and anyone aged 4 or over is allowed to give them a go (their oldest climber is 80!)– and as long as there isn’t a queue you can climb it as many times as you like until you want to change. Obviously some are more suited to the smaller hands/shorter legs, but if you want to try, then they let you try! Even the soon to be infamous stairway to heaven is open to all ages, making your way from pillar to pillar, it’s a true balancing act with nothing to hold onto, when your ready it’s simply a leap of faith the reach the bottom. 
Reasonably priced for the time (and exercise!) you have, we will most certainly be making a number of return visits and no doubt sign up to the after school clubs they are planning on launching in the future.
It’s nothing short of a fun and fantastic activity in the middle of a city. 

Perfect for those with both young and older children, the addition of a soft play allows parents to please both their little explorers and young adventurers at the same time! The climbing supervisors put the kids right at ease, with high fives being thrown around at every corner, kids will be confident enough to just get stuck right in – Win Win!

Top Tips 

– Let your child explore. With a physical and very adventurous activity like this, it’s hard not to worry. Being adults, we have a tendency to over think things. As parents we know that the more we ask if they are ok, the more worrisome and nervous our children can become. 

– Get your little one to trial coming down by themselves at a low height. Get them comfortable with that before letting them scale half way up (or to the top!). There is only one line available on most of the walls and the staff are unable to climb safely up to retrieve anyone finding themselves ‘stuck’…… get them used to trusting the equipment.  Once they are happy and comfortable release the reigns, let them challenge themselves and most of all let them have fun!

– Let them choose. Don’t tell them what they can/can’t have a go at or how to do it. The supervisors will make recommendations, but if they want to try a hard wall, let them. They will soon figure out what they can and can’t do – or reach!

– Be patient. If it’s their first time they are bound to be both excited and nervous. Let them change their mind a million times on what wall they want to attempt, or how they want to climb it. Let them figure it out. You may find they go back and forth a lot, deciding where they want to go, but it’s perfect for decision making and building their confidence.

– Mums and Dads – enjoy it too! The arena is safe for your little one to explore! There are plenty of supervisors on hand to monitor everyone and its regulated so it will never be over packed. I wish I had climbed more (my nerves did get the better of me a little – I even hate coming down ladders so doing this was a big challenge for me) but I enjoyed watching her so much I forgot to test myself too! Get stuck in, you won’t regret it and you will have some awesome memories of the day to share together too.

– Most of all… relax and just have fun!
Stay stylish,

J 😘xx

FESTIVE/ Christmas 2016

This is a little snapshot of my Christmas celebrations this year. Bit of a random post I guess, but it’s nice to make and share memories!

Where are all of the gifts, you ask? Unwrapped and behind the shot in a massive state of carnage! All wrapping in the shot is from Morrisons.

Gorgeously cute pressie from Grandmama Alice

Mama Alice folded the napkins into Christmas trees!

3 fish pate on rye
Venison with all the trimmings
Bread and butter pudding with double cream.
Thanks to Step-daddy Alice for his amazing culinary skills once again!

Grandmama and Grandad Alice

 Mr Alice matching with our baby neice, adorable.
Stay stylish,

J 😘xx


This year has  created a lot of really nice and important memories for me, and it’s always nice to capture those memories in a photo as a reminder. So I was really pleased to be introduced to Cheerz to allow me to print my pics and actually display the memories! 

I downloaded the app to my iPad which I connected with my iPhotos, #Facebook and #Instagram accounts to grab my favourite images (it can also link to Dropbox) to create my Cheerz box   

Some graduation images…   

 Vegas pics…   

An actual cheerz photo!   

Even 1 taken last weekend   I really like how they have that Polaroid appearance to them; my plan is to make a kind of photo string/washing line with wooden pegs so this’ll look cute when they’re on display.

The photos arrived within 4 days of placing my order which is a great turnaround if you’re ordering anything as a present – you can pick up magnet squares and framed collages amongst other things. As Mama Alice is a massive magnet fan, I think this may be a stocking filler for her sorted!

And how nice is this little message I had inside the box??    Really excited to get these beauties on display now!

Thanks for reading, Stay Stylish (and get snapping)

J 😘xx