Many of us find selecting gifts for men a challenge. As women, our tastes can be very different and it is hard for us to get inside our men’s heads. To make matters worse, getting them to actually communicate what they would love can be an uphill battle. So if you want to treat a man in your life but don’t know where to start, here are 5 great ideas for men’s gifts that should help put a huge smile on his face.

Watch

Isn’t it great to see the return of watches on wrists? I think there was a period where we thought our mobile phones would do when it came to telling the time.  We forgot that watches can express individuality and are a key style item. I love a watch with a good leather strap and a really interesting face preferably showing different time zones or similar.

Jewellery

It is easy to see jewellery as the domain of women but why not treat the man in your life to a jewellery item that he can show off and keep long-term as a memory of a special time together. I remember college friends wearing bracelets and how fine they looked often choosing one that showed who they were as a person. Nowadays, there are beautiful and creative bracelets for men available or perhaps your man would prefer a pendant necklace?

Key chain

A lot of men I know love a gadget and a really simple one is a key chain with various useful items kept conveniently all in one place. It might include a screwdriver and a bottle opener which as we know can get you and your man out of many an emergency situation.

Bags

Bags are a good option for most men although obviously you should take his individual lifestyle into account when making your selection. If he like to be outdoors a lot, a rucksack may be  the very thing. Perhaps he travels a lot on business and would like a retro looking holdall in leather? Hip packs are a great option for the festival goer in your life. You could even pop an extra present inside the bag as another treat.

Old favourites

If you decide that none of the above are quite right for your special someone, you can fall back on old favourites like scarves, gloves and even socks. This is where you can bring in your creativity in finding brands that are new to him online. If all else fails, if you get a gift card you can be absolutely sure that he will like what he buys but I think a personal touch is better as it really is the thought that counts.

What would you love to buy the man in your life?

 

 

 

 

With Christmas just around the corner, there are bound to be plenty of opportunities for evening drinks with friends after work. Perhaps you’re long overdue a catch up, or maybe you’re celebrating the end of the working year with colleagues – whatever the reason, you want to look your best. Choosing the perfect outfit to take you from the office to the bar can be tough – but it’s definitely possible!

These helpful tips will help you to find the right combination of office-ready and off-duty. Inspired by the latest trends from AW18, this desk to drinks guide is all you need to look your best this season.

 

No-fuss dressing:

It’s important to choose an outfit that doesn’t require too much preparation after you’ve finished work. Like every year, we’re embracing the glitz and glam of the winter season so include a touch of sparkle in whatever you choose. This chunky knit and skirt combo is perfect for a seasonal party, keeping you warm enough for when you’re walking from bar to bar but dressy enough for when you hit the dancefloor. The style of this jumper is ideal for the office, and the high-neck brings an edge to your workwear look. Simply pair with black jeans throughout the day and swap for a mini-skirt for the evening. Pair with your favourite pair of heeled pointed courts and clutch bag, complete with gold embellishments, and you’re ready for whatever the night holds.

If you’d rather change into something else before heading out, there are ways that you can work around this. Style down a jumper dress during the day with tights and flat pumps and dress it up on the evening with a cross-body bag and printed shoes. Black is the perfect colour for work-to-play as it gives off sophisticated vibes in a business meeting and creates a classy evening look when you head out to the bar. Accessorise with chunky drop-earrings and statement rings to complete the look. Fortunately for us, knitted jumper dresses come in a range of styles today, suitable for all shapes and sizes. Choose one with a leg-split for something that’s less formal where can show off your pins post-5pm.

From desk to dinner:

Of course, not every after work get together involves going to the bar, an after-work meal is also a great way to catch up with your friends. Style-up in this season’s colour palette — autumnal brown. Choose a culotte waistline to show off your curves but keep it formal with a jumper and blazer. When it’s time to clock-out, swap your smart coat for a leopard print jacket and you’re ready for the evening! Bringing together different garments from the same colour palette is an on-trend technique that’s ideal for work-to-play outfits — it creates a look that’s well put together and not too loud for work.

If bright colours are more your thing, you don’t have to stick to a muted colour palette; deep burgundy and emerald tones are always a hit and they don’t look too over-the-top for the office. A good way to make an outfit more formal is to add a tailored blazer and mid-heel court shoes, you can even tweak your look by wearing your hair in a neat bun to exude a work-ready vibe. Once you’re out-of-office has been switched on, remove your blazer and throw on a pair of block-heel mules or studded suede heeled sandals to give the illusion of beautifully elongated legs.

Additional tips and tricks:

If you’re heading out for a drink in the run-up to Christmas, you might want to think about staying warm. Maxi hemline dresses and buttoned-up, collared neck tops are ideal office-ready fashion, as they’re both formal and comfortable for important meetings and busy days. But what do you do in the evening? When it’s time for drinks, use a belt to cinch in your waist and create a gorgeous, party-ready silhouette. Then, throw on your tallest pair of heels to get you in the mood for a fun night out. Dress up your look with statement jewellery — think chunky necklaces, bangles, and big hoop earrings — then quickly slick on an extra layer of mascara and eyeliner and you’re good to go for a big night out in minutes.

 

 

 

I am a week away from my milestone birthday. How I have managed to survive 5 decades on the planet is a mystery. I intend to celebrate and to be proud of how far I have come through good times and bad. So for a bit of fun I thought I would imagine all the things I would like to have in my life over the next year or so. I should warn that the items on this list may be quite random – welcome to my world!

A is for Afternoon Tea and Abacus. Afternoon Tea is always delightful and I had an abacus years ago. There is something lovely about an abacus and I would like another one.

B is for blankets, Baileys and books. I love to read and am managing to find time to do it recently after a long dry spell. As my late Mum said, you are never truly lonely if you have a good book and fond memories. Baileys should speak for itself and I know is a guilty pleasure for many of my readers too. Blankets are important because I like to keep warm and snuggly. In fact, if I had enough blankets, I could also have a beach hut all year round!

C is for cushions, champagne and chaise longue. My other half hates cushions so the only ones we have are in my daughter’s room or in storage. My Mum always had cushions and I would like some of my own on the sofa to be enjoyed. Champagne is something I only truly enjoyed when I was a teenager on French exchange. It was very good and I think it spoiled me for lesser versions. So I am on a mission to find a lovely bottle of Champagne. I had a chaise longue but it was not retro enough and actually not very comfy either.

D is for duvets and decanters. I do enjoy duvets and the higher the tog the better. I want a decanter because my parents had them and so this one is pure nostalgia really.

E was a letter I struggled with. A friend suggested eroticism and once I find out what that is, I may well consider it.

F is for flowers and I would like some to be delivered every week. My other half buys them so rarely for me so I have started buying them myself from time to time. I would love the luxury of them just turning up on the same day every week.

G is easy because I have wanted a globe drinks cabinet for years. I know why of course. It is because my amazing Uncle Lawrence had one in the Seventies when we used to visit him regularly at his flat in London. I would also like a glitterball because I have just always fancied one.

H is another letter I struggled with. A friend suggested a hot tub but I would want one to myself as I am such a shy, introverted woman.

I is for Impressionist prints. I have always loved Impressionist paintings. I chose a card with one on to present to my parents when I got into Cambridge and we all took a day off from life to celebrate going to Ilkley and indulging in hot chocolate fudge cake.

J is another letter I struggled with. I used to want a Jaguar but I think that moment has passed. Maybe I will just settle for jelly either with ice-cream or in a trifle just like my Mum used to make – boozy and with deep layers of cake, jelly, custard and cream.

K is for kiss. I would like to have a kiss from someone who really wants to put one my way. Don’t they say you have to kiss a frog who will turn into a Prince?!

L is for lighthouses. My late Dad started this one off I think as he took us to Flamborough a lot. I used to hate it at the time but nowadays I love all things lighthouses and have often thought I would like to live in one. L is also for lamps because I would like to have lots of them just like my Mum did and have seen some spectacular ones recently in vibrant colours and that give off aromatherapy scents too.

M is for music, maxi skirts and Mah-Jong. I love an eclectic range of music. My other half does not like me to play it loud.  As he now has poor hearing and we have a bigger place, I can get away with it more. I keep wearing trousers and miss having maxi skirts but cannot seem to find any in the shops here. If anyone knows a good online store for maxi skirts, let me know. Mah-Jong is a game that my lovely Uncle gave me years ago but I was too young and could not grasp the rules. I do remember the set was beautiful and would like to finally learn the game before I am older and even more grey.

I warned you it would be random!

I will work on N-Z tomorrow!!

If you had to pick just one item off my list to receive yourself, what would it be?

Milestone Birthday

 

 

Strong Soham Mums have joined forces to produce a charity calendar with a cheeky twist. They are getting naked but all in the most amazing cause. I don’t often ask people to share my posts in a begging type fashion but this time I am and I think you will see why when you read on.

Who are the Strong Soham Mums?

They are like you or me in that they are  mums who love their children. The difference with these mums is that  they have all lost a child and all live in Soham. We all know that losing a child is the biggest fear of any parent so I urge you to empathise with these amazing mums and lend your support to their collective efforts. They loved their children so much and they lost them which is gut-wrenching all the time but perhaps particularly challenging at this time of year.

Alison’s story

“My husband and I lost our son, Charlie in June 2017.  He and our younger son have a rare immune condition.  After a couple of very dangerous bleeds, and worried that the next bleed could be fatal, the doctors wanted Charlie to have a bone marrow transplant.  Unfortunately after 5 long months in hospital he lost his fight for life.  Our lives will never be the same and we will continue to love and miss him forever.”

Alison’s story is so sad and every mum in the calendar has her own tragic tale to tell. We cannot bring their children back but we can get behind their fundraising efforts by purchasing their calendar and spreading word of mouth far and wide.

Strong Soham Mums Calendar 2019

As I say the photos in the calendar are more boudoir than boardroom. They are tasteful and were taken professionally. At just £9.99 the calendar is great value for money and will raise a giggle at Christmas or the New year as well as giving you that feel good-factor of helping good causes.

Where is the money going?

100% of the proceeds will go to Addenbrookes Hospital, Children’s Wards and the Road Victims Trust.  The Strong Soham Mums have chosen Addenbrookes Hospital as it is local to them.   Road Victims Trust was also chosen as a few of the mums lost their children in road traffic accidents.

Two requests

Please spread the word about this calendar via your social media networks and in the real world too. It will make a great gift for Christmas and the New Year.

Please consider buying at least one of these calendars because it will make these women feel they did the right thing and help some amazingly good causes.

http://www.strongsohammums.co.uk/product/charity-calendar-2019/

Strong Soham Mums

 

Cuddle Fairy

Linked to https://www.clairejustineoxox.com/2018/12/the-christmas-forest-christmas-tree-review.html

Linked to http://www.reflectionsfromme.com/a-blogging-good-time-113/

Musings Of A Tired Mummy
Twin Mummy and Daddy
Post Comment Love

Image Source: Pexels

With summer well and truly here, it won’t be long before the cooler temperatures arrive and if you have a new addition to the family, you will want to take extra care to keep the baby warm. The delicate newborn baby should never be exposed to wind, especially not a cold one – and with that in mind, here are some useful tips on keeping a baby snugged up when the summer finally says goodbye.

  • Maintaining Body Temperature – Babies have difficulty maintaining a good body temperature, so they need all the help they can get. Too much clothing and the baby will perspire and if the room is a little on the cold side, the baby’s fingers and toes might turn blue. Make sure that the baby is wearing a single piece jump suit, one that covers their hands and feet and wrap them up well whenever you have to go outside.
  • Layered Clothing – Well, if it works for grown-ups, why not for a baby? There are affordable baby gift sets available online from leading suppliers such as https://babygiftbox.com.au/ and they have hampers filled with items that are suitable for winter wear. Don’t forget hats and mittens if you do have to go out, as these will prevent the baby’s extremities from getting cold.
  • Don’t Make Baby Wear A Coat While Inside – This could cause the little one to overheat and even a few minutes is too long, As soon as you enter a warm interior, remove the baby’s coat before you do anything else and avoid exposing the baby to heat too quickly.

Baby

Image Source: Unsplash

  • Stay Inside As Much As Possible – This is the time to forget about the afternoon walk in the park, as cold wind can seriously harm a baby’s delicate skin, and if you can limit your outdoor time to being to and from the car, then this will ensure that he or she doesn’t catch a cold. In the event you have to take baby out, there are some great tips on winter dressing that might help.
  • Swaddle In Blankets – The age-old tradition of swaddling a baby in a soft blanket is as good today as it ever was. Rather than using loose bedding, which could lead to suffocation, swaddle baby, but not too tight, as this will help to maintain body temperature.

 

Image Source: Unsplash

  • Be Careful Using Portable Space Heaters – If you prefer to use one rather than turning on the central heating, make sure you never leave the room while it is running. If a baby suddenly learned how to crawl, it could have serious consequences. Perhaps it is better to preheat the room before removing the space heater, as the baby will not come into contact with it.

There are many specialised items you need for a newborn baby and the online supplier has a wide range of quality baby clothing and accessories, and all at lower than retail prices. If someone you know is soon to have a baby, why not send them a baby basket or hamper? They come in all sizes to suit every budget and each one contains essential baby care items that every mother could use.

A Guide To Keeping Baby Warm This Winter