The ebay Midi Dress

Hands up if you've already got your hands on the ebay Midi Dress? It's a beauty isn't it? I've definitely got my £8.99's worth out of it during the heatwave and I imagine it'll be a wardrobe staple throughout the summer too.

If you haven't got a clue what I'm talking about, let me introduce you to the ebay Midi dress. It's a dress I've seen all over Twitter, Instagram and Youtube. A real favourite with bloggers.

It's a  lovely summer dress, WITH POCKETS (yes that deserved all the caps) that comes in a variety of designs. I chose the sunflower design as it screamed summer to me and I get so many compliments every time I wear it, hence why I thought I'd share it here on the blog!

I've never been sure about wearing midi length dresses - I don't have the world's smallest or most toned calves and I feel like they cut me off in the worst possible place. HOWEVER, midi dresses are everywhere at the moment and the designs are too pretty to miss out on. Plus I'm at a stage in my life where I'm not quite as self conscious as I used to be (I think motherhood and being in a stable, loving relationship have played a positive role in that,) so I'm forgetting any hang ups I have and rocking the midi dress anyway!
Anyway back to the dress...at £8.99 you can't expect the world's most luxurious material. It's Polyester and feels a little on the cheap side though not at all uncomfortable, even on the hottest days! It also looks lovely, so I don't think the material really matters at the end of the day, especially considering the price tag. I think it's machine washable though to be on the safe side, I tend to hand wash mine and then hang it to dry.

With some ebay dresses, I think you have to be a little wary of sizing as sometimes they come up small. Though with this particular dress, I risked buying my usual size (UK size 10) and it fits perfectly.

I tend to wear my dress in the day time with sliders but you could definitely dress it up a little with heeled sandals for evening wear. There are so many beautiful patterns to choose from (as well as plain coloured styles) and it's oh-so-tempting to treat myself to another!

Have you bought the ebay midi dress yet?

Megan x
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#ColourYourPersonality | What does the colour of your home say about you?

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What's your favourite colour? Mine's pink. If I had the choice there would be plenty of pink in my home. But seeing as we're currently living in a rented house, it's not really practical. I'd like to say it's a colour I'll use when we eventually move into our first family home but I'm just not sure the other half would ever go for it...would yours?

When it comes to choosing the colours for your home, I do think it goes beyond simply picking your favourites. It's about finding colours that work in a particular room, help to bring out its best features and contribute to the overall look and vibe you want to create. I think it's true that the colours we choose for our home can say a lot about our personalities though and this is something that Julian Charles have explored in their latest campaign #ColourYourPersonality.

I was recently sent the campaign eBook and it was full of interesting ideas about the colours we are drawn to and what they could say about us as people. Those drawn to pink are 'warm, friendly and approachable' with inviting homes. Pink is said to show that you have a 'maternal side' and are someone that others go to for help. The bit that really rang true with me was 'you always see the good in other people but not necessarily yourself.'

As well as sharing insights into how colours can be connected to our personality, Julian Charles have also offered tips on how to style particular colours in your home. Deep blue is a colour I'm really drawn to at the moment. I find it really calming and I've actually pinned a lot of feature walls in that colour on my Home and Interiors Pinterest board. It was interesting to read that blue is actually the strongest feng shui colour and is recommended for use in bedrooms (particularly children's) as it can encourage a better night's sleep.

Another colour I've always liked is green and it's actually my mum's favourite colour too. I think sage green is lovely and very on-trend and I also love leafy green shades too. I imagine injecting green tones into my home with plenty of house plants dotted about. I think green is good for the soul - there's something just so refreshing about it!

Julian Charles describes green as a 'calming colour' that demonstrates patience and loyalty. People who love green don't tend to stick to house trends and are confident in buying what they like. I had to giggle at 'your house is full of wonderful knick knacks' as this isn't really me (I'm slightly more minimalist) but it's my mum down to a T.

I think the #ColourYourPersonality campaign is a really interesting one and it's got me thinking in more depth about the colour palettes we'll be choosing for our future family home.

I'd love to hear about your favourite colour. Is it the one you use most in your home? And do you think it reflects your personality?

Comment below or tweet me @meganjane03 using the hashtag #ColourYourPersonality

Megan x
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Personalised Blaze and the Monster Machines Book Review

Ask Arthur what his favourite TV show is and I can almost guarantee he'll say Blaze and the Monster Machines. It's a show he's loved for a good while now and although he's gone through phases of watching Paw Patrol, Shimmer & Shine and other Nicklelodeon shows in the past, it's Blaze he always goes back to.

About Blaze and the Monster Machines

For those who don't know, the show is basically about a Monster Machine called Blaze and his best friend / driver AJ and the adventures they get up to in Axle City. Blaze has lots of other Monster Machine friends (you'll see a few pictured in my photos) and also a rival, called Crusher, who's always getting up to no good and causing many predicaments for Blaze and his pals. As a parent, these TV shows do get on my nerves a little but I can see why they appeal to kids. I quite like the fact that Blaze attempts to teach kids things about science, technology, engineering and maths. The songs are admittedly catchy (I've realised I've learnt the words to many of them without even knowing) and I feel like Arthur has learnt some rather big words for a two year old that I'd never even use in real life like 'trajectory.'

Personalised Blaze Book

As you can imagine, Arthur was absolutely delighted to see that the lovely team at Penwizard had sent him his very own personalised Blaze and the Monster Machines book*. His little face lit up and he couldn't wait to have it read to him. In fact, I believe I had to read it three times before we were allowed to do anything else, the day it arrived!

Create your character

Like with the personalised Paw Patrol book I featured in my Father's Day Gift Guide, Penwizard allow you to completely personalise the look of your son or daughter's character in the Blaze book too. You can select everything from the colour and style of their hair to the colour of their clothes and eyes. With this particular book you'll also be asked the city you live in and your child's birthday, as these feature in the story.

The story

The Blaze and the Monster Machines story follows one similar to one of the TV show episodes, where Gabby (the mechanic in Axle City) has her tools stolen by Crusher and his sidekick Pickle. Blaze goes on a mission to get them back, with the help of his best friend AJ and your son or daughter! Arthur loved seeing himself as a character in Blaze and really got into the story, shouting out words when prompted and pointing at the pictures.

The story itself is quite long, so if your little one is quite young, prepare for them not to reach the end. We're at a stage where Arthur will now happily sit and listen to a book he's interested in like that but I think it would have been a different matter a few months ago! Having said that, don't let it stop you buying the book because it's perhaps one little ones can grow into and if they watch Blaze, they're bound to love it anyway!

A great gift...

I think the personalised books from Penwizard are a fantastic buy for kids, particularly if they're into the popular Nicklelodeon shows. They'd make a great gift either for your own child or as a birthday present for other little ones and the fact they're completely personalised makes them all the more special.

The Blaze and the Monster Machines personalised book costs £14.99 for a softback and £19.99 for a hardback. Penwizard have also kindly offered 10% off purchases of the book using the code BLAZE10.

What do you think of personalised books for kids?

Megan x
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Dream Kitchen Designing | What I'd love...

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Before anyone gets too excited for me, I don't have a house...yet! But it's something we're talking about. Something that will be happening in the not too far away future. And it's inspired me to start creating and sharing some more home / interiors content here on the blog. Now, before I get into telling you all about my dream kitchen, please note the 'dream' bit. Luckily the other half and I seem to share a lot of the same loves / hates when it comes to interiors but I know that there'll be times where one of us has to compromise...so this dream kitchen I have in my head could totally change. Also, we don't even have a house yet so it really is just me throwing a few ideas out there of things I like, inspired by the wonder that is Pinterest, of course! Anyway, I'll just shut up and get on with it...

Image credits: 1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6

Terracotta paint

News flash! - I now like coloured walls. A couple of years back, I would never paint a wall any other colour than white and the thought of it filled me with dread but things change and I now think coloured walls look pretty cool. I think finding the right paint colour can be difficult and let's face it, it's a fairly big commitment. Though I guess you could just paint over it if you hated it. But anyway...I digress!

I've been saving so many paint colour ideas on my Home and Interiors Pinterest board from Moody Blues to Sage Greens (both of which I absolutely adore) but the colour we've been discussing for the potential future dream kitchen is terracotta. When my other half first suggested it, I have to admit I immediately wanted to shut the idea down. Images of a yellow and terracotta kitchen at one of my childhood houses instantly flooded my mind and even though my parents insisted it was fashionable at the time (maybe it was guys), it's not a colour scheme I'd like to see again. Ever.

But having looked at some terracotta walls on Pinterest, I've got to say, I've really warmed to it and think it could look beautiful! There's something warming about terracotta and I love that it's a little bit different. I think it could work well with rustic wood shelving, copper pans (more on those in a minute) greenery or even soft pink accessories (though I think I really am living in dreamland for that one!)

Image credit: AO.com


Herb garden

My house plants board on Pinterest is flooded with indoor herb garden designs and ideas. I love a herb garden - as weird as that sounds. There's just something so nice about having fresh herbs to throw into your cooking. And I plan to do as much cooking from scratch as possible to save us money! I think herb gardens are a great way of adding a little greenery to your kitchen and bringing the outdoors in. They're practical AND stylish. I think this is an idea I'll be able to sell to the other half without any trouble.

Image credit: Chairish.com


Copper pans

Something we're definitely in agreement on is having copper pans in our dream kitchen. It's just a matter of finding ones that are good quality yet won't break the bank. I've seen a fairly reasonably priced set of non-stick copper pans at Argos and as they're still on-trend every brand and store seems to have their own version right now. But if you have a good set of copper pans, I'd love a brand recommendation!

Exposed stone / brick wall

When I picture my dream kitchen, an exposed stone or brick wall is always present in my mind. I love their rustic, natural beauty and think they're a great for giving your kitchen both character and style. I'm all for leaving them their natural colour but I also think they look great with a white wash of paint, especially if the kitchen itself is a little on the dark side.

Image credit: WallSauce
Of course, there is the option these days to fake it! Wallsauce have a fantastic collection of brick and stone wallpapers, which are available in a variety of designs and look so realistic. All of the wall murals by the British company are made to measure and available to print on a choice of wallpaper finishes (including peel and stick ideal for rental properties). I think the designs look fantastic and they are definitely something I would consider using in my dream kitchen, if the real thing isn't feasible!

Image credit: RealHomes.com


Kitchen island

My dream kitchen would also have an island for food preparation. We currently have one in the house we are renting and it's so useful. I think kitchen islands (especially those with drawers and cupboard space) are a really practical feature but whether or not we have one will all depend on the shape and size of the room itself.

What design features would you include in your dream kitchen?

Megan x
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A Weekend Well Spent #5: Strawberry Picking in Somerset

Last weekend, we decided to jump on the Instagram bandwagon and go strawberry picking! Arthur loves strawberries and was so excited to go (even though I'm pretty sure he didn't know what he'd really be doing) and luckily there was a place not-too-far-away, between Taunton and Bridgwater in Somerset.

Thurloxton Fruit Growers is a family run business that has been offering 'Pick Your Own' since 1973! Starting with just one acre of strawberries, the business has significantly grown over the years and now produces a wide range of fruit and vegetables across 25 acres. As well as delicious strawberries (some of the best we've ever had) they also have raspberries, redcurrants, blackcurrants, loganberries, gooseberries and rhubarb all available to pick.

It was a really beautiful place and the blazing sun made it all the more glorious! We had fun finding and picking the best strawberries and there were plenty of opportunities for beautiful photos. Most of the photographs featured in this post were taken by my other half (check out his Instagram here). He has a real talent for it and has taken some lovely ones of me and Arthur (I've shared a few on my private Instagram) which I'll treasure.

Arthur really enjoyed picking the strawberries to start with but after about ten minutes, he'd lost interest and wanted to do something else. He'd spotted a tractor near the entrance and was desperate to have a sit on it and well, we couldn't blame him because it was pretty cool, as far as tractors go! We managed to distract him for a little while, making it a competition of who could pick the best strawberry and the promise (bribe) of an ice cream was enough to win his attention long enough to enjoy and complete our pick!

Although it's normal for toddlers to have limited attention spans, don't let it put you off going strawberry picking, as it's such a lovely thing to do as a family! Rachel over at The Illustrated Teacup Blog has shared some fantastic tips on how to survive pick your own fruit farms with a toddler in tow, so be sure to head over there and have a read before you go.

We almost filled a basket of strawberries and spent around £6-£7, which I think is very reasonable. All of the strawberries were excellent in quality and tasted delicious. We finished them off today, with me using the very last few to make some more homemade ice lollies!

It was a lovely family experience and something we'll definitely do again. Thurloxton Fruit Growers was the perfect place for it, so if you are looking for somewhere to Pick Your Own Fruit in Somerset, I definitely recommend it. You can also enjoy a tasty ice cream or refreshing drink after your pick and they take card payments; making it all the more convenient.

Have you been strawberry picking or is it something you'd like to do with your family?

Megan x
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Summer Ice Lollies for Kids and Grown ups!

Hands up if you're loving the sunshine - me too! Although, I've got to admit it's been a little bit too hot for my liking at times and don't get me started on trying to get a toddler to sleep at night in this heat...any parent will know it's quite the challenge! Of course, sunshine and warm weather has meant we've been able to spend more time outdoors. We've had the paddling pool and water table out (cue many spontaneous water fights) and we've even had a go at making some delicious ice lollies, thanks to the team at Steamer Trading!

Ice lollies are the perfect treat for kids during a heatwave as they not only taste delicious but are great for cooling them down and providing hydration too. But they're not just for kids - grown ups don't have to miss out on all the fun! I'll let you into a little secret...alcohol ice lollies are the perfect way to enjoy a little tipple in the blazing sun, whilst you cool down and chill out. Try the recipe below and you'll be thanking me later!

Instead of watching the football at the weekend (I'm just not that into it) I decided to have a go at making some ice lollies with Arthur, using these fantastic ice lolly moulds by Zoku. We were kindly gifted the Ice Pops Fish Moulds by Zoku* for Arthur (the design is fun and perfect for kids) and the Zoku In Line Pop Moulds* for us adults (because let's face it, making alcohol ice lollies is fun enough!)

Ice Lolly Recipes for Kids & Grown ups

Although I love a good cocktail and definitely will be making some cocktail inspired ice lollies in the future, we had a bottle of Prosecco ready and waiting in the fridge, so I decided to go ahead and make some Prosecco Ice Lollies for the grown ups and a Lemonade version for Arthur. I don't let him have fizzy drinks at the moment, so thought they'd be a real treat for him!

To make the ice lollies a little more fancy, I also added in a few of the Lemon Bursting Bubbles from Popaball* in Arthur's lemonade ice lollies (available at www.steamer.co.uk) and the strawberry ones in the Prosecco pops. Not only do they look cool but they also have an intense fruity flavour when they pop, which adds a special something to the ice lollies.

And of course, who could say no to a little shimmer? After seeing the Blue Pearl Shimmer from PopaBall*, I just had to sprinkle some into both the lemonade and Prosecco lollies. I have to say, I don't think I put quite enough in the lemonade pops but you can really see it in the Prosecco version. I also tried it in a glass of Prosecco at the weekend and it made it look so pretty!

Lemonade Ice Lollies for Kids

The process of making the lollies was as simple as pouring the lemonade into a jug, adding a few of the Lemon Bursting Bubbles and a sprinkling of the Shimmer. I then poured it into the moulds until it reached the 'fill line' which is clearly shown at the top of them and popped the funky shaped fish tails in, before sticking them in the freezer for the required 8 hours. Removal was also so much simpler than I imagined. All you do is gently pull the fish tail shaped ice lolly stick and it will begin to remove the ice lolly; bringing the silicone mould with it until the two separate. No fuss. No mess. It couldn't be easier!

Prosecco Ice Lollies for Grown ups

The recipe was similar for the adult ice lollies, only I adapted it to use Prosecco and Strawberry Bursting Bubbles*, with the shimmer, instead. The ice lolly moulds are slightly different in that they have a sleeve that you fill up, which slots into the moulds and then you clip together the stick and base to put on top. When you want to remove them (after at least 8 hours in the freezer) you simply have to run the sleeve under the tap for a minute or so and then the ice lolly will slip out with ease!

Both ice lolly moulds are easy to fill and clean. They are pretty slimline in design, so easy to slot into your freezer and we had no problems whatsoever creating perfectly shaped ice lollies. I only wish I'd added a little fruit juice to Arthur's lemonade pops, so the fish designs were a little more defined but at least I know for next time! You can still make out the different fish shapes (there are 6 designs in total) and Arthur's loved choosing his favourites. They're a definite winner for children and make the whole ice lolly making experience even more fun.

So did they taste good?

Of course they did! Arthur was delighted with his fish shaped lemonade ice lolly pops and they've made the perfect treat (and occasional bribe) over the last couple of days. After sampling my Prosecco ice lollies I can also say I'm extremely pleased with the taste! It's just like having a frozen glass of it, only you get the odd pop of sweet strawberry flavouring, provided by the Popaball bursting bubbles, which is a real treat for the tastebuds! I think the shimmer looks awesome - it makes me think of mermaids and I'll definitely be adding a little more in the kid ice lolly recipe next time, so Arthur can enjoy the shimmer too!

Fancy making your own summer ice lollies for kids and grown ups? I've popped the ingredients on the image below, so feel free to pin it! And if you fancy treating yourself to some new ice lolly moulds you can get 10% off products in the Ice Cream & Lollies Category at Steamer Trading using the discount code: SCRIBBLE 


Got a tasty ice lolly recipe? Feel free to share it or link me to it in the comments below and let me know if you try making the Lemonade or Prosecco ice lollies yourself!

Megan x
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Hape Wooden Toddler Toy Reviews

If there's one thing kids love doing, it's making noise - so it's fair to say that musical toys always go down a treat! But if battery-operated musical toys with repetitive rhymes and irritating animal sounds tend to drive you a little bonkers (don't worry we've all been there) then you'll be glad of more traditional musical toy offerings, from brands like Hape!

Hape is the world's largest producer of wooden toys. As a brand they are committed to achieving sustainability in their toy production, with designs that make use of natural, renewable materials, are durable in design and made to stand the test of time. What I love about Hape is that they offer both a nod to traditional toys of times gone by with their beautiful wooden designs, yet remain up-to-date with what the kids of today want to play with. Their toy ranges are designed for children from birth to 6 years and cover all categories, from role play and puzzles to construction and music.

Their musical instrument toys are some of the best I've seen and this Multi Musical Block Set*, which Arthur was kindly gifted, not only allows children to experiment with musical sounds but shape, construction and size too. As you can see from the pictures, the set contains different size blocks, which can be stacked any way the child sees fit. Each block features a different instrument and they can be stacked into each other and carried around, using the handle, with ease. Suitable from 18 months, it's a fantastic musical toddler toy that will allow your little one to have fun experimenting with sound.

If you're a fan of traditional wooden toys, you'll also love this Rolling Roadster Car* from Hape. Designed to fit perfectly into little hands and allow for easy movement, this cute little wooden car is bound to be a favourite. Arthur loves pushing it over different surfaces and making it drive up and down the furniture! Although he's got a big collection of cars, I have a feeling this will be one that lasts for any future children because of it's sturdy, quality design. At £7.99, it's really affordable and would make a fantastic gift for a child's 1st birthday.

Are you and your kids a fan of traditional wooden toys?

Megan x
*Items gifted in exchange for an honest review.
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6 Things I've Discovered Since Learning to Drive (again)

Although a lot of people learn to drive when they're 17 / 18, it didn't quite happen like that for me. Well, it did but it didn't work out and after failing my first driving test and being a little short of money, I sadly gave up. I think the biggest problem was that I let my nerves get in the way and I just wasn't motivated enough to do it.

Fast forward ten years, I'm 27, a mum and guess what... I'm finally having another go at driving! Yes, since January I have been having driving lessons every week (bar the odd bought of illness) in hope of passing my test this summer. Overall it's been a really positive experience and although I haven't done it as quickly as some or passed my test yet, (I'm not giving you the actual date but it's soon) I feel like I've personally come such a long way. Here are a few things I've discovered since learning to drive...again!

1. It's expensive but worth it

There's no dodging the fact that learning to drive costs a lot of money. Prices will vary slightly from one driving instructor to the next but you're looking around £25 per hour. I'm currently paying £66 a week for 2 x 90 minute lessons, which is very reasonable but as a parent with very little income, it is A LOT of money. My Mum and Dad paid for all of my lessons when I was 17 / 18 and so I didn't really think about just how expensive it was (spoilt is the word for it) but this time round, I've paid for them myself and let me tell you, it isn't cheap! It's meant that I've not been able to save money I need for other things but the way I see it is that when I do pass, it's going to make such a difference, not only to my life but Arthur's life too, so it's completely worth every penny.

2. You don't forget everything

If like me, you started learning to drive but gave it up and are thinking of having another go, there's a very high chance that you'll remember a lot of what you learnt before. I actually surprised myself with how much I could do when I had my first lesson (this time round) and even though I had a lot of brushing up to do on my driving skills and even more work to do on gaining confidence, it felt good that I wasn't starting from scratch again.

3. It's okay to go at your own pace

I think I've always felt a little bit embarrassed that I can't drive. It's one of those things I hated admitting to people, which is so silly because not everyone can do everything and that's perfectly okay! Some people can't drive. Some people don't want to drive. Some people learn to drive then give it up. Some people decide to learn to drive later in life. Basically, whether you choose to drive or not it's no one else's business - as the saying goes, you do you!

What I've learnt this time round is that it's perfectly okay to go at your own pace. Try not to worry if your friends are learning to drive quicker than you or if so-and-so only needed a handful of lessons before passing. Everyone is different and you should value your own progress and work towards your own goals.

4. Studying for your theory test might seem harder

I found it much harder to study for my theory test this time round and I think it's got a little something to do with age. We assume that as we get older, we gain more knowledge but I think you also become a little out of practice with things like revising (unless of course you're still studying or have a job that involves taking a lot of exams!) I also found it hard to motivate myself to sit down and revise for my driving theory test because as a parent, there's always a million other things that need your attention and when you finally get to chill out, the last thing you want to do is whip out a copy of the highway code.

Luckily, there's now a driving theory app you can download on your phone (I feel like I dinosaur saying this but I'm pretty sure we didn't have that ten years ago) and it's great! You can study, take mock tests and even practice hazard perception clips on your phone. I found that having the app on my phone made it much easier to fit revision into my day, as I was able to do it while I was eating my lunch or before I went to bed. Everything's easier with an app right?!

I passed my theory first time, last time round but obviously it runs out after two years so that was no use to me anymore! Thankfully, I also passed first time, this time round. I was so nervous and really feeling the pressure to pass it again (so much so that I actually got disqualified on one of my hazard perception clips for over clicking - BIG whoops!) But thankfully it all turned out okay.

5. Driving lessons still make me nervous but that's okay

Even though I've been having them for months and months now, driving lessons still make me nervous! My instructor is friendly, we get along well and I'm not usually nervous once I start driving - it's just the thought of the lesson that still seems to fill me with dread. I know other people feel / have felt the same way though, so it's comforting knowing I'm not alone. I've kind of just accepted it's one of the many things in life that makes me nervous and that's okay. It's just a matter of finding ways to overcome those nerves.

Something that has really helped me is to have two lessons a week, rather than just one. It's been a case of the more I do something, the easier it has become. I've definitely noticed I'm less nervous about my lessons now that I have two a week, as everything isn't pinned on a single day, if that makes any sense at all?! Yes, it's more expensive but it's probably meant that I've reached a position where I'm ready to have a go at doing my test quicker than I would have done if I'd only had the one lesson - so the cost balances out really.

Another way I deal with my nerves is to remember the reason I'm doing this - to give me and Arthur a little more freedom and independence and to make life that little bit easier for our family as a whole, which brings me nicely onto my final learning...

6. It's good to have a motivation

For me, freedom alone wasn't enough to motivate me to pass my driving test. When I was younger, I knew that I could hop on a bus to town if I needed to, most of my friends lived within walking distance and my Dad (he REALLY is a good Dad) would always give me a lift if I needed one (and still does to this day!)

The best motivation for me has been having Arthur and moving to a more countryside location, where public transport isn't anywhere near as frequent as in a city. I want to be able to drive so I can take him places whenever I want to, we can get to more clubs and groups to meet people and we can also drive and see my other half more (though it's hopefully not going to be too long until we're under one roof anyway!) I'd love to not have to rely on others for lifts and also be able to return the favour - because my-oh-my, I've got a lot of lift repaying to do!

Although we've managed with me not driving for the first couple of years of Arthur's life, in the last year or so, it just felt like the right time to do it. I had the confidence to start again and I've had the determination to keep going. There's nothing like your own child to help you motivate to succeed! The quote 'I felt like quitting but then remembered who was watching' is one that sticks firmly in my mind. I'm keeping everything crossed that I pass soon!

Have you learnt to drive? How old were you and what motivated you to do it?

Megan x
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Interview Tips: How to Plan Your Outfit

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Even though I am a stay-at-home parent / freelancer these days, I have some experience interviewing for various different roles in previous years, from Saturday jobs and part-time work in retail and hospitality to full time roles in digital marketing. Going to interviews was something that made me so nervous but I always left them feeling fairly positive and I think that's because I always prepared for them. No matter what role you are going up for, researching the company, the job itself and the industry is essential. It not only shows your knowledge but also that you care.

Your Interview Outfit Says A Lot About You

As well as preparing for your interview and the questions you might be asked, I think it's equally as important to choose something appropriate to wear. Even though people shouldn't necessarily judge on appearance - when it comes to interviews, we all know there are unwritten rules to follow that can help you make a good impression! Your outfit can say a lot about who you are, before you've even spoken a single word. In collaboration with TMI Resourcing https://tmiresourcing.co.uk/, I have put together a few interview outfit tips to help you dress for success and feel confident in doing so...

Plan your outfit in advance

Planning is one of my top interview tips and whilst I've already touched on how important it is to do your research and plan potential answers to questions you may be asked, it's equally as important to plan what you're going to wear too. The last thing you want is to feel stressed about your outfit on the day of your interview; finding you don't have a pair of tights without a ladder in them or a tie that goes with your suit. Remember if you're ordering something new to wear to an interview, you need to consider delivery times. Don't leave it until the day before your interview!

Check for stains and get the iron out

If you're planning on digging out your go-to interview outfit from your wardrobe, rather than buying new, be sure to look for any stains and marks before the big day. I'm the first to admit I'm lazy when it comes to ironing but interviews are an exception to my 'no ironing' rule. A creased blouse or shirt isn't going to make the best impression and you won't feel good about yourself either. Choose materials that won't crease easily (no linen!)

Choose sensible footwear

Earlier on in this post, I said I've usually had fairly positive interview experiences but I've just remembered a rather cringeworthy interview experience I had with a top fashion retailer when I was a lot younger. To be honest, looking back I was never going to get the job as I just wasn't the right fit for the brand but boy, did I try and make a good impression. I even wore high heels. High heels, which I can't and never have been able to walk in. And I had to get the bus in. So you can imagine how much I was struggling to walk by the time I got there. I looked a little wobbly and looking back, a little bit of a 'try hard.' My motto from this experience? Choose sensible footwear. If you can walk in heels, then fine, they look great with a pencil skirt or trouser suit but do yourself a favour and make sure they're comfortable. The last thing you want to be worrying about is your poor feet on interview day! And men, you can't really go wrong with black or brown smart shoes. Just make sure they go with your suit. 

If in doubt, opt for a suit

I think the rule with interviews is that formal attire is usually expected and you can't really go wrong with a suit. Black is always a safe bet, though lighter shades can work well too, particularly in the summer months. Patterns are often seen as a 'no no' but I personally think a patterned blouse can show a little personality, providing it's not too garish! There are so many fashionable suits available from high street retailers these days. You don't have to look boring and stuffy to look smart and professional - and you don't have to spend a fortune either.

Obviously some work places may be a little more relaxed when it comes to the dress code. A blazer, dress and flats can make a nice interview outfit choice for women, as it still has an element of professionalism about it. 

Put spare tights in your bag

Whenever I wear tights, I always carry a spare pair in my bag just in case. Again, I don't personally think a ladder in your tights should prevent you from getting a job, after all these things happen! But it's something that might make you worry or prevent you from feeling good about yourself - so it's always best to have a spare. 

Make sure you're comfortable

I think an important point I want to stress about planning your outfit for an interview is that you need to be comfortable. Smart but comfortable! The more comfortable you are with your appearance, the happier you'll be and the more confident you'll come across to the person interviewing you.

Be yourself

Finally, as an overall interview tip I think it's so important to be yourself in job interviews. After all, the company will not only be evaluating your knowledge and experience but whether you'll be a good fit for their workplace. Ensuring you'll be a good fit is as much of a benefit to you, as it is to them. You don't want to end up working in an environment that doesn't suit you or you're not comfortable in. So be true to yourself, show your personality and don't be afraid to inject a little of it into your outfit choices.

What are your top interview tips and how do you dress for success?

Megan x
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