Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Comping & Freebies

So I am always going on about comps and freebies - I post the items I receive every month and you might be wondering whats going on? I know my postie is!

So basically comping is all about entering competitions. There are LOADS of competitions out there and loads of ways to enter.

I started comping in Nov 14 and didnt really have a clue what I was doing - I didnt really understand how everything worked until Jan 15 when I really started going for it and since then I have had lots of amazing prizes - all completely free :)

Comping does take time - I spend 2-3 hours a day entering comps usually whilst watching TV in the evening. I enter between 150-300 comps at a time and I win on average a prize every 2 days. The prizes have ranged from a packet of 4 batteries to a 42inch smart TV.

So lots of people ask me how much do I spend on comping and the answer is zero, zilch, nada. I only enter free to enter comps and I only enter online so there is not even the cost of a stamp.

The same applies to freebies which are as the name implies FREE - sometimes you have to agree to do something to get them and keep them - it might be write an online review, take a photo or do a survey about them. Freebies again can be found in lots of places - loads of companies use social media to gauge peoples reactions to products and to get people to spread the word about them. Freebies I have received range from tiny sachet samples, to full size beauty products, to cleaning products to my lovely new LG G4 phone!

I am going to post regular posts about comping & freebies in the hope that it will help some people out who want to  get started and link them all on a page on the blog so they can be easily found.

If you have questions then feel free to get in touch with me - I am not an expert - some people have been doing this for years and some of them do comping, freebies and blogging as a job - literally they do so well at all 3 they can live off it - that isn't me! My blog is small and personal and full of my random witterings with the occasional review :) I will try and get a list of useful info and sites too but my advice and info is what works for me - other people have their own way of entering and they win too so please dont take anything I say as gospel :)

+365 Day 181

Today is Tuesday :)

So summer is finally here - yay

Work was incredibly hot and sweaty - we really need air con but lunch was lovely as I got to go out and wander in the sun for 30 mins - ahh bliss - I actually think I have some colour in my arms - not the tan variety but the pinkish hue still better than my normal ghostly white look.

We have had the fans going all evening at home and it has been blissful :) the cats have been sprawled out in front of them along with the dog enjoying the feel of the breeze rushing through their fur.

Now its passed midnight its cooler and they are having a crazy half hour running like loons around the living room - its a good thing my downstairs neighbour is deaf - for such a tiny kitty Lady makes a hell of a noise as she charges around.

My new phone cover for my LG G4 arrived today I am pretty pleased it cost me a whole £1 from ebay and that included free delivery! It wasn't quite the same as in the picture online - the quality of the butterfly print is deffo off but for a £1 with a free screen protector I really cant complain too much :) It arrived when they said it would too which was a bonus and it also doubles as a handy purse for storing cards and notes in :) The first pic is from their ebay store and the bottom 3 are my cover :)

 anyways today's positive is enjoying the small things - like the walk in the sun over lunch, watching the cats fur ripple with the fan and laughing at their crazy antics :)

July - Freebies & wins

These may have been won previously but they have only arrived this month :) items will be added as I receive them :D - all pics and links will be completed at the end of the month

1. Win - Cat Play Cube from Cat Hampurr on twitter on their Caturday Night Giveaway :D The cats love it 

2. Win - Liz Early Cleanse and Polish Hot cloth Cleanser 

3. Win - Some vouchers from Debbies & Andrews on FB - I was a tad disappointed with this 

4. Win - Despicable me 1 & 2 from Universal Channel

5. Win - Cat goodies from Pet Face on FB

6. Freebie - Free sample of comfort

7. Freebie - Coffee Sample

8. WIN - some Green tea and mulberry teabags

9. WIN - Austin Powers - International Man of Mystery Blu-ray (From DVD fever on FB)

10. WIN - PICK Me up biscuits

11. WIN - 23 things to do before your 11 1/2 book from the gingerbread house blog

12. Freebie - 14 day garnier ultralift trial

13. Freebie - another free can of tropical red bull won from their game 

14. Freebie - skin care sample

15. WIN Dear White People Tee and Soundtrack from HorrorCult web

16. WIN Anime - DVD and poster from @thegeekymonkey on twitter

17. WIN Pink grapefruit zoflora from their daily game (still waiting on the £1000 holiday tho!)

18, Freebie - pantene sample

19. WIN - kinda a win - got chosen as a VIP for Mickey Delight's club on FB and this is what they have sent out to all their VIPS - 3 x bottles of new Mickey Delight's Flavours, a serving jug and a bar jokes book :)

20. WIN - From @EssoUK on Twitter - this was a runners up prize and it's pretty cool - an AutoGlym car care kit - it's huge with lots of stuff in it and thankfully a guide on how to use it all too!

Monday, June 29, 2015

+ 365 Days 176 - 180

Day 176 - Thursday

After yesterday's truly epic day - today has been a LOOONNNGGG day as I was super tired.

Today pretty much passed in a blur - I did get my antibiotics which I started yay

This evening was a retirement party for work so I went along had some food laughed at some people dancing and doing karaoke - due to my chest infection I couldnt do either - gutted haha (not) - it was a really good night I did leave early as I started coughing a lot.

Today's positive was saying good bye to a colleague with style :)

Day 177 - Friday

Today again work passed in a blur of tiredness - I had a half day in the day job which was good as I basically went home and slept until around 730pm before my night shift at 10pm at ASDA

Work at ASDA was good - again I wasnt as tired as I thought I would be. I also got paid from ASDA whoop whop. So cos I do nights im on 7.22 an hour which isnt brill but better than the 6.66 I would be getting on days

Today's positive - pay day :D

Day 178 - Saturday

I slept til 1pm today and then got up and changed my bed, tidied my room, did washing an stuff. Didnt really feel like doing much as M & H were hanging around - H is walking really well now if still a bit clumsy - cant believe she is 2 in August :D

Work again tonight was okay I had to do some training and got feedback from the manager that they are happy with my work  - always good to know :)

Today's positive is seeing the improvement in H's walking - when I think that 3 months ago she wasn't walking and was having physio and they were talking about all sorts of stuff and now shes like a whippet :)

Day 179 - Sunday

Today again as spent mostly sleeping - I didnt get up until late and then I cooked dinner for everyone and just slobbed around. The antibiotics seem to have kicked in so I am coughing less and less green gunk too.

Today's positive is the chest infection clearing up

Day 180 - Monday

Today I got loads done in work :) but the office was like an oven it is soooo warm in there.

Tonight I have been entering loads of competitions as tomorrow is like the end of the month so there's loads that are closing tomorrow. I'm hopeful for some wins - my work colleague is running the Cardiff half Marathon in support of neuro-rehab so I am hoping to win some items she can use as raffle prizes :D Anyways I think I entered like 400 or so comps today - I got a bit bored so didnt do them all but hopefully I will get 1 or 2 wins for her  :)

I have also done the final survey for the LG G4 campaign - I still need to submit a couple of reports too. I havent been as active on this campaign as the others but it's a lot more difficult when your not physically giving people something but I know of 2 people who have bought LG G4's after seeing mine which cant be a bad thing :)

Tonight I also booked some extra tickets for the holidays - after a long discussion with mam around money and stuff I made the decision to not book universal studios this year - last time we went lizzie misbehaved badly and there wasnt a lot for her to do and their disabled facilities are shocking. So I have just booked us Seaworld, Busch Gardens and Aquatica tickets which are 14 day ones with free transport to BG, I also got us our i-ride trolly tickets and I booked us to go see the Pirates dinner show too - all for under £400 for the 3 of us which I am pleased with :)

I just need to book the airport lounge for the way out, buy my travel insurance (eek), book a taxi for the day of travel and book special assistance for Uncle C on his flights home without us - oh and fast passes for disney and then I think everything is done and I can just chill a bit about it all

Today's positive is getting more holiday stuff sorted out of the way

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

+ 365 Day 175


Today has been an AWESOME day!

Like literally AH MAZE ING!

So I mentioned a little while ago that I had won tickets with Delia online to a venue of my choice to see The Sound of Music. I chose the Bristol Hippodrome as the Cardiff dates for the show had passed and this was the next closest. Well today was the day of the show :)

I had the day off work and I booked us tickets via National Express to Bristol - they cost like £21 for the 2 of us (me and my mam) return which worked out a lot cheaper than me driving there, paying for parking and fuel and paying for the bridge crossing to come home.

We dropped Jac the hound off at my aunty's at 9.15 and then I drove to work to park my car (naughty naughty) and we walked into the bus station which is like a 10-15 min walk from work.

It's been a gorgeous day lovely and sunny and we were both in great moods. We got to the station at around 10.10 for the 10.30 coach - I double checked where we had to get it and within 5 mins it was pulling into the stall. The Bus goes from Swansea to Heathrow via a bunch of stops so it was already pretty full by time it hit Cardiff but we were first on and got seats together

We had some sweets and some pepsi and we were set for the journey :)

The trip was super relaxed despite the mega busy bus and it took us just around 70 mins to get to bristol - the coach was actually really nice too - comfy seats, working air con and a clean loo - what more can you ask for?

When we got to Bristol I was pretty impressed they have really good signage so we got out of the coach station and both wanted something to eat - we headed down the street and spotted a burger king but just before BK there was a HUGE Primark - Primani is one of our fave shops and as we had plenty of time we popped in for a quick look - 45 mins later and 2 shopping bags and we were done - we had a little wander but by this point I was about ready to eat the pigeons so we stopped in Burger King to get some food - OMG how expensive is BK? I got 2 chicken burgers, 2 fries, 2 drinks and it came to like £13 I nearly passed out - I could have gone and had a full bloody carvery for less than that! sheesh

Anyways the food was fine and I love the range of sugar free/lo-cal drinks they have there are loads to choose from - we were boring and I had a fizzy fanta orange zero and mam had a diet coke - like I said boring!

After the BK we decided to walk to the Hippodrome to get our tickets from the box office and then find a cafe or summat to sit in the sun while we waited for show time. Again really cant fault Bristol - plenty of signage and finding the Hippodrome was super easy

We got there around 1.15 so I went to the box office and grabbed our tickets and we had a wander around - there were lots of cafes and things but we decided to just go to Starbucks as mam fancied a coffee so we just sat and chilled and watched the world go by

There was a guy doing some really cute wallace and gromit 'graffiti next to us which was cool but the paints were a bit whiffy

Finally it was time for the show :)

Our seats were just off centre to the right and like 8 rows back and they were pretty much perfect we had a great view :)

The show was amazing, the singers were great, the kids were great, it was just fantastic - I enjoyed every minute - there are no pics from the show for 2 reasons - 1 your not allowed to take them and 2 even if you were I was so mesmerised that I didnt want to miss anything :) seriously if you get the chance go and see it - I love the theatre anyways and I love the Sound of Music too it used to be my fave film as a kid and both combined is great!

After the show we popped to Poundland to pick up some pepsi max for the journy back and I wanted a pair of cheapy ear phones so I could listen to some music too.

We had like an hour to kill so we stopped at the pub near the station and grabbed a drink before wandering over.

The journey back was much less crowded so we had enough room to spread out - again the coach was really nice and clean and comfy and we got back to Cardiff pretty quick just under an hour.

Then it was a brisk 15 min walk (the sun had gone in and it was chilly) to collect the car - then to my aunty's to collect Jac - we stopped for a bit for a chat and came home.

I'm pretty much shattered now but it was such a great day - we are thinking about doing it again but booking a night or 2 in a hotel and spending time exploring Bristol properly - it seemed a really nice place with lots to see and do :)

Today's positive - well the whole day has been fantastic - we both had a great time, we didnt argue (thats a first!), the coaches were great, the shopping was great, everything was just fantastic :D

Oh and here's the 3 items I got in Primani at a grand total of £8 (they were all reduced hehe)

Oh and I almost forgot to mention - I got an e-mail today and I get to keep the LG G4 I have been reviewing :) Today has been a truly awesome day!

+365 days 174

Day 174 - Tuesday

Today was work which was the same as always :)

I finished early to get to the drs where I was seen an hour late! I hate things not running on time it puts my teeth on edge - I'm one of those people who is always 5-10 mins early. I hate being late or having to rush and then waiting around after.

The dr was odd...its the same dr I saw when I had whooping cough who misdiagnosed me despite me telling him several other staff in work had it. He also sent my blood samples when he did eventually think it might be whooping cough to the wrong place - the outcome being by the time I was diagnosed I was really sick but it was too late for me to have the antibiotics that would have helped and it had to run it's course - it took 9 months for it to finally clear up and even now I get some issues with my chest.

So he listened to my chest and said it was borderline, checked my ears and said he couldnt see anything as they were too gunky, temp was slightly up and checked my heart rate which was too high and then prescribed me antibiotics but decided he would do the script for 2 days time just in case it clears up in the mean time - weird but at least he apologised for running an hour late

Things have been pretty quiet for me on the comping front recently - not many wins in the last week which isn't a huge surprise as I haven't had time or energy to enter as been feeling so lousy.

Anyways I had 2 wems (thats winning e-mails) today which cheered me up - one for some mulbery and green tea and one for series 9 of supernatural boxset whoot.

I'll give the box set to my mum as she loves LOVES supernatural and I'm going to give the tea drinking a go myself as it's supposed to be super good for you and I think my immune system needs a boost.

Today's positive was remembering when I was at the drs to get my repeat prescription as I am nearly out of all my meds and I always forget to do it until the very last minute doh.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Kids in blogs and other such stuff

I recently along with a bunch of other people became a brand ambassador (ba) for a company called Child's Farm which does loads of really great products suitable for kids from birth all natural and free from nasty bits and suitable for sensitive or eczema prone skin. It's a great company to work with and they have sent us out loads of their full size products to try plus samples to give out to families and friends.

Part of being a ba is talking about the product, reviewing it online etc which is fine - I love trying new things out - H is smelling good with it and we are all enjoying it - what I am not so keen on is there almost seems to be a pressure (not from the company) but from the other ba's to post pics of kids enjoying the products on facebook and on blog posts. This worries me - now maybe having a dad who worked in forensic psychiatry (thats the good old lock up wards where if the patients weren't in hospital they would be in a very very very secure prison due to the nature of their crimes) and working within child health has given me a very negative view of other people. Perhaps where others see an innocent picture of a child naked in the bath tub I see something that can be used by sick people and twisted for their own means. I really dont feel comfortable with the idea of posting a picture of H or D naked in the tub on the net. I dont mind writing a review but I think that is where it will end.

I read a post a few months ago about a family who will not allow anything about their children to be posted online - they have even set up social media accounts in their childrens name ready for when they are older to use so that noone else can use them. That's a bit extreme too.

I guess for me it's about moderation. I will post the occasional pic to fb or twitter or even on the blog but thats it - they will have a digital footprint but hopefully it wont be huge and when they are old enough to get onto social media they wont find anything that will embarrass or upset them about themselves.

+ 365 Days 167 - 173

Day 167 - Tuesday

Today I am still voiceless! We had a big staff meeting in work and I couldn't speak - I could just about emit a high pitched squeak - highly amusing for everyone else not so amusing for me!

After the meeting we had a bring a plate lunch to celebrate a colleagues 60th birthday and another colleague who is leaving for mat leave as shes due to have a little girl in a couple of weeks.

Myself and another girl put together a little baby girl gift hamper for her with an outfit, a toy, some smellies and some bits for her too like choccies and tea. She loved it which was fab as it was a las minute thing - so glad we did it :D

Today's positive was putting together and giving the gift hamper and making someone else's day

Day 168 - Wednesday

Still no voice - where has it gone?

Along with no voice I have developed a rather annoying barking cough! Still hopeful it's laryngitis and will be back tomorrow!!!

I found out today that an old friend of mine I know from a Disney geeks forum (yep I'm that sad) who I also met up with a few times in London and who worked at Disneyworld with me has got another 12 month contract at Disneyworld - he should be there when I am there for my holidays! I am so excited about it. Louis is a great guy but he is french and lives in france so I only get to see him every couple of years. It will be fab to meet up with him in the place we love, ride some coasters, eat late night MaccyD's and just hang out.

I love my Disney friends - its very hard to explain to someone who hasn't live out at Disneyworld some of the craziness that goes on - even now I cant point with 1 finger and I have to stop myself offering to take people's photos!!!

So today;s positive has to be that in around 12 weeks or so I am going to see an old friend :)

Day 169 - Thursday

The voice has returned! well sorta I can now croak a few words - get in there!

Work today was longgggg it is superhot in the office I think my thermo read like 28 degrees and with no breeze thats a bit warm!

The SLT I work with told me not to speak or over use my voice as it will go again. Still coughing too.

Got a text in work today from my mum saying she was feeling down so even though I kinda wanted to go home after work and take a nap I took her to bingo for a couple of hours instead. Typical of my luck on the night I have no voice I win and have to shout! only a tenner but it did pay for the bingo and the muffins we had :D

I think mum felt a bit more cheerful at the end especially as I talked through the holiday bits n bobs with her and although she wont have loads of money to take I think it will be just about manageable.

Today's positive was managing to get my mum to leave the house when she was feeling depressed which is no mean feat as she generally just wants to go to bed!

Day 170 - Friday

Today was a half day woohoo half day half day yay. It also happens to be pay day :D

After I finished work mum met me and we went shopping - I was going to go sign up for a costco card but I forgot my payslip so couldnt - really need to remember to do that soon. I also called into ASDA to get my fob card fixed as it doesnt open any of the external doors - security didnt have time to do it so I had to leave it with them.

After some slight over-use yesterday my voice was pretty grim again so I have been very quiet all day and the cough is now a cough with bright green gunk - I'm thinking I might have an infection yuck. I slept a lot this afternoon and evening and I have to admit I am dreading working tomorrow night

Today's positive?  Payday payday and we ordered pizza for dinner :D

Day 171 - Saturday

My voice is back again but I have been good and resting it anyways.

Today I had to go visit my aunty - she recently turned 70 and she had birthday cake for me :) thats not my only reason for visiting lol but cake is always good. She is looking after Jac next week when I go to the Sound of Music for the day so I needed to sort the details with her.

Me, my mum and my uncle went out for dinner today to La Shish - it was really quiet as Ramadan has started which was kinda nice as normally its heaving. I was really surprised that Uncle C didnt like the food - me and mam love it.

after dinner it was back home and I went to bed at around 6pm to get some sleep before my first shift at ASDA tonight.

Today's positive - cake cake cake

Day 172 - Sunday

So my shift at ASDA was really good. It was cool as when I got there (despite the slip road being closed and having to detour about 10 miles out of the way) there were 2 guys who had interviewed with me also starting so I wasnt on my own.

The work itself is relatively easy if you know the store layout -  which I don't yet - stocking shelves and then facing everything up so it all looks good for the customers.

I worked in health and beauty and it looks like thats where I am normally going to be placed.

Everyone was really nice and friendly too.

The night went super fast and I wasn't tired which was great - I had forgotten how nice it is to not have any responsibilities in work and to just have a thing to do and do it - my week day job is really pressurised and I have to make lots of decisions and prioritise stuff all the time so it was kinda nice to do a job where I could just switch off.

After work I slept until 1pm and then I took mum to Lidls as they have just reopened after a refurb. It was absolutely heaving so we did our shop and got the hell out of dodge!

Then it was home and chilling for a bit before bed again as soo tired.

Cough and gunkiness continues along with croaky voice - voice is getting better cough is not - gonna try and get a drs appointment on Monday

Today's positive - was deffo the job at ASDA and the first shift going so well. I hope it continues well to :)

Day 173 - Monday

Back to the day job today.

I managed to get a GP appointment for tomorrow - seriously whats that all about? its normally impossible to get one with less than 3 weeks notice. So appointment booked for tomorrow at 3.45 pm

Nothing really happened today.

After work I paid off pretty much everything that was left for the holiday which is a HUGE relief. Just gotta get some spending money now.

Today's positive is getting an appointment quickly with the GP - my coughing is causing real issues with sleep so I am hopeful the doc can sort me out.

Monday, June 15, 2015

+385 Days 165 & 166

Day 165 - Sunday

Today there was this big bike race thing going on in Cardiff they closed tonnes of roads and it was awful. I dont think they thought it out properly and they closed loads of roads but didnt have them listed on the road closure list either - total nightmare. We were going to go out for food but couldn't get to where we were going so ended up turning around and coming back to our local Hungry Horse.

Worse meal EVER - I rarely leave bad reviews but I have literally nothing nice to say about it.

The restaurant was filthy, tables sticky. They originally sat us next to a family of around 20 kids who were screaming and running around from one end of it to the other including running in and out of the fire doors. I asked to move because it was literally unbearable.

We moved to another booth table which again was dirty but quieter sat next to a fire exit. Kids continued to run in and out of the exit until we closed it - during this there were people carrying hot plates of food tripping over them. Parents carried on chilling with their beers - well done sterling parenting skills! I dont expect kids to be sat in silence in a restaurant but these were beyond - it was dangerous and staff pretended they couldn't see what was going on as they just couldn't be bothered dealing with it!

When the food arrived it was okay - I had a beef dinner - half way through eating a potato I noticed a long blond hair stuck to it urgh really put me off - they brought me out a fresh dinner but I was kinda off it by that point. They had plated the peas in their water which had mixed with all the rest of the food making everything taste like peas and the roast potatoes were slimy so I ended up leaving it.

This is the second time I have tried it on a Sunday - last time it was pretty awful too so wont be going back will stick to the carvery in the future at least the food there is tasty and much better value and staff are on the ball.

When we got home I had a discussion with my uncle who is coming on holidays with us - he is only spending the first week and then flying back to the UK and I wanted to try and persuade him to stay in a hotel in gatwick following his flight and come home the next day - he is disabled and nearly 70 and he will find the flight then followed by a 5 hour coach journey too much I think. He has agreed to it so I got him a room at travelodge in gatwick central for £31 - not a bad price. We have stayed there before and we will all be staying there before our flights out this year too so I will make sure he knows which bus he needs to get and stuff. Its a nice travelodge clean, quiet and refurbed and the staff were great.

I also booked our return coach tickets to gatwick for the holidays had to book them separately due to the different return dates but thats another thing off my tick list. Lots of people have asked me why we are not going by train - train is about an hour quicker. The reason is simple when you are travelling with 2 disabled passengers both of whom have difficulty walking, plus suitcases and hand luggage the train just isnt a viable option as you have to change. Also they would both struggle to get up the steps in Cardiff central and then having to switch in Reading (sometimes less than 5 mins between the trains - we have done it before running up the steps across and down) its just not going to happen it can take my uncle 10 minutes to walk 100m and that is without pulling a case. The coach is longer but there are not stairs other than the step onto the coach, it's straight through no changes and it drops you literally kerbside at the airport. It's also significantly cheaper for the 4 of us it's like £130ish return and you can change your ticket for around £5-10 if you need too - the train was over £300 return!

Anyways today's positive is ticking another thing off my holiday to do list - its less than 12 weeks now til we go!

Day 166 - Monday

Today I am speechless - literally! I seem to have developed a complete inability to speak over night along with a burning sensation in my throat - the SLT in work has diagnosed me with laryngitis and told me I am not to speak. This meant for fun times in work - I tried answering my phone but after listening to me croak they hung up! Had to put my phone on silent and pick up messages and then get another staff member to respond on my behalf - awkward!

Work was fine - probably because everyone started leaving me alone when they realised I couldn't answer them haha.

I came home to a random message from ASDA telling me I didn't need to work tonight - which was kind of them as I am not scheduled to work lol I am only doing Friday and Saturday nights - I hope they haven't confused me with someone else who then is going to come into work eep.

After work I slept for like hours I went to bed around 5.30 and got up 8.30 I didn't want to get up I wanted to stay in bed but thought I might be awake half the night if I did. I think all the trying to get people to understand me by signing and writing notes has worn me out!

My mum bought me apple pie from Morrison's so am just about to tuck into a large slice with squirty cream - diet is going exceedingly well haha

Today's positive? Silence is Golden - okay so I cant speak but its a temporary thing and I actually got lots done in work today :D I am hoping my voice comes back tomorrow but have been told it can take up to a week so will see how it goes - at least it is only temporary which I am grateful for.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

My Dysfunctional Family

I realised that I often witter away about random people in my family but havent actually ever said who is who. My family is pretty dysfunctional and difficult to follow so here goes :)

1. My mum - she is 64 and a retired psychiatric nurse - she is diabetic

2. My dad - he is 55 and a retired psychiatric nurse - also diabetic

They are divorced and have been for years but they get on really well and my dad often stays with us

3. My big sister S - she is blonde and has a blonde dad (not my dad) who isn't in touch - she is 45 and has a whole host of issues including mental health probs, mobility difficulties and diabetes .She has 3 kids:

3i - Lizzie aged 24 moderate learning difficulties and behavioural difficulties, ASD, Cerebral Palsy, partially deaf, and has eye sight problems. She lives with a foster family and has done since she was 4 years old due to her difficulties. Lizzie often comes on holiday with me, day trips and spends a LOT of time at my place. She can be difficult to manage and has aggressive outbursts. She has a bf and they have been together for a long time.

3ii - D aged 22 - D has mental health issues and moved out of her mums place when she was 16 - she doesnt really spend time with the family but does turn up occasionally when tis her birthday or christmas to get presents

3iii - N aged 17 - N has mental health issues, behavioural difficulties and social communication difficulties. She lives at home with S. She has a bf who is 54 - I totally disagree with this but have been told she is happy with him (vom)

Lizzie and D have the same dad - he is involved with D but doesnt like Lizzie due to her disabilities.

N is in touch with her dad who is different to L&D's.

4. My big sister M - she is a redhead and has a red headed dad (not the same dad as me and S - getting confused yet?) M is 43 and has a mild learning difficulty, adult diagnosed ADHD, kidney and bladder probs that require ongoing hospital treatments, IBS and mental health probs. M has 2 children:

4i. J aged 22 - lives with M has ASD, social communication difficulties, mild learning difficulties, ADHD, behavioural problems and depression. J's dad was abusive so there is no contact with him or his family. J has a son (D who lives with his other grandmother but spends alternative weekends with J and M)

4ii H aged 22 months - lives with M - her dad doesnt really have contact (she has some half sisters on his side but they are not in touch). H has low tone and developmental delay. I have a SGO in relation to H which makes me responsible for her - it kinda works out like a shared custody thing it just means I make sure M and H are okay and managing (M is a great mum she just needs support) H & M stay with me quite a lot. This is one of the reasons we are pushing for them to move closer as M doesn't drive due to her conditions so it would be better if she was nearer me so I can continue to support her

5. My big bro P - he is 40 and lives in China. Him and M have the same dad and he is also a red head. He is getting married this year to his Chinese Fiance - we cant go to the wedding as we already have a holiday at the beginning of Sept so they clash.

I'm not going to go into the aunts, uncles, and cousins as I would be here all day with writers cramp! Lets just say I have numerous of all and they are all crazy and my entire family wouldn't look out of place on Jeremy Kyle - it's true what they say you can't choose your family I love them but they are pretty nuts!

I'm also not going to go into pets as they all have them from dogs and cats to birds and lizards to a tarantula!

So that's it a brief intro to my kin :D

Saturday, June 13, 2015

+365 days 162 - 164

Day 162 - Thursday

Today was my Friday in work - that's always a good thing!

My dad came down today - he hadnt told me but hes been having some stomach probs and wanted to see the GP. He has had issues in the past with some weird type of stomach ulceration - last time he had it he lost over 5 stone in 6 months as he just couldn't eat. He said this feels the same as last time so he's going to the GP to see if he can change his meds and stuff to deal with it.

Also found out today my aunty made my sister her beneficiary in her like death whilst still working work provision. It's not a huge sum but way more money than my sister has had in her life. Trying to persuade her to be sensible and not shout about it to everyone is proving difficult. I have convinced her to put a set amount aside to cover new furniture and stuff when she moves. She is going to give it to me to look after and the same with the money for my nephew. So at least some of it wont be frittered away on silly buys.

I'm kind of a horrible person I think as I am a tad jealous that my sis gets a cheque and I get the headache of trying to support her and get her paperwork sorted to get onto housing lists and stuff - doesn't seem fair seeing Aunty C was my godmother...but there you go she always said to me she looked after M cos she couldn't take care of herself but as i could she didnt need to look after me - I sometimes think thats one of the reasons I am so lacking in emotion - everyone always told me I could take care of myself so I have done - one time in high school this older girl ganged up on me with her mates - she punched me in the face and pulled my hair - I fought back and I fought back dirty and it ended with both of us trying not to cry and running home - I told my mum what happened and she told me I was big enough to take care of it myself so I did and the girl didn't bother me again - she would occasionally shout insults to me but only from across the road and only when she had her full back up of friends with her.

It kinda sucks though being the sensible one, the reliable one, the not bat shit crazy one - I am pretty sure it's my turn to do something crazy but everytime I think this is it one of my sisters has a crisis for me to deal with!

Anyways today's positive is remembering I have tomorrow off work yay

Day 163 - Friday

So today I have my best welcome meeting at ASDA. It was 10 -4 so I thought I would get  lay in (I fiendishly locked the cats out of my room when I accidentally shook their treat bag and they all ran into the kitchen ha!

Bit it wasn't to be my dad woke me up at 7 as he thought I was going to be late to work as I had forgotten to mention I wasn't going to work - he doesnt actually know about me working at ASDA and I dont want to tell him as I will get a lecture about managing my money better, about not burning out, about blah blah blah

He wanted to come to work with me so he could get the bus to his Dr's but as I wasn't going to work he decided I should take him to the surgery for 8am then at 5 minutes to 8 he runs to the loo and says wont be long! 20 minutes later both he and a noxious cloud emerged from the bathroom - great so thats me running behind schedule (I have to be at ASDA across the otherside of the 'diff which is normally a 25 min run but in rush hour is gonna be more like an hour an half at 10 plus got to get from my place to his Dr's which is the opposite direction and takes 20 mins ARGH) and I can't oee before I go cos I aint going in that bathroom for at least 2 hours after he's been in there! Not the best start but I managed to drop him off and make it to ASDA with 5 mins to spare.

By time everyone arrived it was pretty much my whole group interview group booked in minus 2 people - one who was supposed to be there and one who I guess didnt make it.

The training was the usual health and safety stuff and lots of signing our lives away - the main thing I took away from it was the pay isnt great but I get a night premium, I get a discount card after 12 weeks and I really like the white chocolate and strawberry gooey muffins they do!

They also dropped the bombshell we were scheduled for computer based training the following day - mine was at 9am so that's another missed lay-in opportunity.

When I finished I checked my phone and I had a couple of missed calls from my dad. I didn't have time to answer them as I had to get back across town and pick up flowers and a birthday cake for a works do in the night. For some insane reason I decided to drive from ASDA where I was already to the ASDA nearest to my place as I figured its rush hour the nearer I am to home the better - it really didn work out so well as I hadn't factored in the Wales v Belgium footy or the X festival that was happening in the city centre. It took me  like an hour to get across cardiff and then another  30 mins to pick out the cake and flowers and then the normally 10 mins to my house trip took another 30 mins.

My workmate was picking me up so I called her to warn her about the traffic too. I had just enough time to get in have a wash and change before she arrived and we had to head back into town into the chaos. The meal was actually quite nice although I was starving and there really wasn't enough of it for my liking. On the way back we half joked about stopping for a bag of chips but the chippy was closed. I didnt get in til around 10.30 and I was literally dead on my feet - so much for a relaxing day off eh?

I took my meds and went to bed

Today's positive was getting my rota for ASDA - I start next Friday and finding out I was getting paid for the induction today whoot

Day 164 - Saturday

I'm sure I've mentioned my cats several times. Leo my bengal woke me up at 4.30 am howling outside my bedroom window - the little git had snook out and now it was raining and he wanted in - if you havent heard a bengals low mournful loud cry google it - its bloody annoying and it woke me up so I had to get up out of bed and let him in along with Dena who showed up (she treats us like a free food store rather than actually living here). I got them in and they were soaking so I closed my door and went back to bed only to be woken around 30 mins later by them fighting in the kitchen - I separated them and went back to bed again at around 5.15 am - back to a nice long sleep?


because I stupidly hit the wrong alarm on my phone - instead of hitting the 7.30 one I hit the 6.30 one so of course the alarm went off at 6.30 argh and all 4 cats heard it and despite my best efforts to ignore them kept me awake and kept yowling til i got up and fed them.

This is so not how I had my Saturday morning planned!!!!

I ended up getting up, showering and getting ready to go out - my dad's an early riser and a morning person - I am not - literally I am like a cave woman I grunt, I growl and I have a big puffy unibrow its not pleasant. My dad was naturally curious as to why I was up early so I growled summat about paper work and left. The traffic was light and i made it across town in like 15 minutes so clocked in 20 mins early for the training - the person running it had me go straight in and start and I was done and dusted by 9am and heading home.

So that was kinda my today's positive getting the last bit of training done before starting on Friday. :)

The LG G4 or #TryLGG4 - All about that phone - Part 2 - REVIEW


So my LGG4 arrived yay

I was super excited to get my parcel finally delivered - first thing I noticed was it was a really light parcel - that's a good sign as it means the phones going to be light :)

What was in the box?

3 things  :

- bluetooth headset
- info about the campaign
- LGG4

So I blatantly ignored the headset and wait straight to the techy goodness of the phone.

First impression was wow its got a big screen at least a cm wider and taller than my S3. The phone itself is quite thin with a slight curve to the back so that it fits comfortably in your hand. Even with the battery in its still pretty light too which is great as I can pop it in my pocket without it weighing my trousers down!

With the phone came....NO INSTRUCTIONS!!!! What? ARRRGGHHH so I don't normally read instructions inside out and back to front but this is a brand new phone, it's completely different to the samsung and iphones which I have used before and I have no idea how to use it.

Putting my sim card in was easy enough then came the big challenge - it took me a few minutes to work out how to turn it on! I checked the front no button, I checked the sides no button...there is a button on the back but it looks like a camera button - that can't be the power button can it? Yep it is - phew!

After feeling really stupid for taking so long to work it out I got the phone on and running.

First thing to notice is the screen - its amazing really bright and crystal clear - even with the plastic covering on (which I have left on for the entire trial as I dont wanna scratch it) the pics not brill as taken with my old phone but it should give u an idea :)

The screen is also super responsive but not overly so. It means it responds quickly and well to your finger but doesn't open tonnes of things you dont want opened.

I immediately set up my social media - it doesn't come with fb pre-loaded which is odd as most phones do now and I decided against downloading the fb ap as I am not keen on it so access FB via the browser. Instagram and Twitter were easy to do and I downloaded the aol and yahoo mail aps so I can get my email.

The speed of connectivity to the internet using my sim was really fast compared to my previous phone. Signal strength for 3 is pretty poor in my house generally and in the past I have struggled to get the net. No probs with this phone straight on and pretty much instantaneous access on youtube yay.

I also tried it with my home wi-fi again super fast and easy to connect with no probs. The wifi signal in some of the rooms is quite weak but the phone still managed to connect and run quickly on it.

I spent some time playing with it and trying out the pre-loaded programmes including - 

- smart remote - super easy to set up and use and works on all the tvs and the sky box :D
- LG Health - a nice fitness tracker - easy to set up and it logs how long you have been walking for, how many calories you have used and what % of your set daily goal that is (you can set the goal to whatever you like)
- LGG4 trial app - an app for us reviewers to upload our 100 great photo moments

The thing I was most looking forward to about the phone was the camera - it has 2 cameras one at the front which is 16MP which is more than my fuji digicam and the selfie one which is 8MP.

I have to admit though I was a tad disappointed with the main camera. Yes you can get some amazing shots but only if your subject will stay still for 30-60 seconds. The shutter speed is really slow and the camera response from you clicking the camera button to taking the photo is also delayed. It meant that some awesome shots were missed.

Now I know there is a way of going in and fully adjusting the camera but that's not really what I was expecting to have to do on my phone. I have a DSLR camera that I can faff about like that with - my phone camera should be point and click and it should work well on the automatic settings. So that I can spontaneously grab my phone and snap a great shot. I also found it didn't seem to employ any antishake tech so if your taking a pic and your hand shakes slightly it doesnt autofocus it just blurs the picture.

That being said the quality of the photos when your subject consents to sit quietly and your able to hold the camera completely still and steady is really really good and crystal clear.

The selfie camera is awesome and it has a built in little tool which basically smooths out blemishes - its kinda like an airbrush tool and really does make you look good it even smooths wrinkles!

I've been using the phone a lot and found the battery really doesn't last longer than a day but I am a heavy user - I use it for facebook, twitter and instagram and probably spend around 2-4 hours on the phone on these apps/sites. I also use it for e-mail and again I am probably spending around 1 hour accessing e-mail. Add in the phone calls, texts, fitness tracker, alarm clock and youtube time and its probably being used quite heavily & continuously for around 6+ hours a day which is actually not bad. From fully charged and with that amount of use the battery is usually under 20% when I go to bed. 

It is really quick to charge the battery which is great from nearly empty to fully charged is just a couple of hours.

I am really enjoying using the phone and its different features. Because my phone arrived late I didn't really give much thought to taking part in the photo challenge as I figured most people who had their phone earlier would have completed the challenge much more quickly. I recently got an e-mail from the insiders team to say the 44 winners had been chosen (I knew I wasn't one of them as I only uploaded 25/100 photos!) along with the winners announcement they also had exciting news - they were going to offer another 100 insiders who completed the challenge a chance to keep the phone! I am now so all on that and have been trying to find photos to fit each of the categories - do I think my photos are the best and most original? Probably not to be honest but I'm gonna give it a good try!

Part 3 a finally summary and what happens next to follow when I know what happens next :)