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Book Review – Spare by Prince Harry

www.audible.co.uk/pd

Fact or Fiction?

Firstly, can I just say it was nice to hear this book narrated by Harry his self?

He does go in to quite a bit of detail about most things and his life. However, the thing that got me was a lot of what he said was guesswork. Either He has a very bad memory, he has possibly repressed some of these memories, or he’s simply trying to make up stories to fill the book, but he doesn’t seem to know what was said, where he was, and what time in his life it was a lot of the time in this book.

I never thought, when starting this book that I would hear so much profanity, drug references and the volume of references to his penis was shocking. Most of the middle part of this book is pretty much dedicated to his penis. It’s bewildering.

A lot of people who have read this book, have commented how it’s basically a takedown of his brother and his father, I see this differently. To me this book is more focused on the things he claims Camilla has done and the stories he claims she has leaked. It does make you wonder how much truth is in what we read in the news. He is obviously lived this story firsthand, and he claims that a lot of what’s been reported in the news has been nonsense.

He has an obvious hate for the media, which is understandable given the events of 1997, but surely with him having seen a therapist, he must’ve worked through some of this trauma and one would think that he would’ve found a way to try and cope with some of that pain by now.

He references conversations that he claims to have had with the Queen and he also says that they were very close. At the same time he describes her as someone he was almost afraid of. When I say afraid, I mean as in the sense that he had a build himself up to have conversations with her. He constantly references the fact that he wanted to hug his grandma but couldn’t. I personally think this is a bit of a pity vote. Poor me, I can’t even get close to my own family.

Touching back on his use of marijuana, which he has noted on a number of occasions. Throughout this book, I would’ve assumed that these instances happened during his use and that he would’ve grown out of this sort of behaviour by now. Yet he mentions smoking a joint in his back garden in America. This is obviously a recent story given the fact that they’ve only been living in America for the last few years. I think a lot of his State of mind may come down to his use of marijuana. I’m not for a second condemning him for smoking a joint or two, but everybody knows that smoking marijuana can make you paranoid. Perhaps if he put down the joint once in a while he wouldn’t constantly think that everybody is out to get him.

To summarise what I have taken away from this book, I feel that he is very damaged. I get a sense that he is very jealous of his brother, and in general I think he’s a very sad man.

No one can really know if this is the absolute truth. It was a very interesting listen, but let’s all pray for the sake of the Royal family and the monarchy itself, that he has now got this nonsense out of his system and doesn’t see the need to release another tell all.

I rate this book ⭐️⭐️⭐️

I would love to hear your opinions if you have taken the time to read / listen to this story.

See you soon!

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A book Review – The Mother of All Christmases by Milly Johnson

www.audible.co.uk/pd

I finished this book around the Christmas break but only just got around to writing a review.

This story is lovely but the narrative is a little confusing. It’s set after ‘A Winter Flame’ and all the main characters are there but they are just not the same. Eve is now pregnant and this features heavily in this story but the title suggests that it’s a Christmas story when in fact most of this book is set in summer.

Again the Daily Trumpet posts are ever so funny and probably the best part of these stories with the funny mistakes bordering of hilarious most of the time. It wasn’t really the cosy Christmas story I was hoping for but with the presence of the Winter World theme park throughout I suppose it’s Christmas adjacent.

I wouldn’t rave about this book but I still rate it a solid ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

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Hello January

Now that the madness of Christmas and New Year is done it’s time to start a fresh with the new year to come.

Hi start every month with a doodle on my kitchen chalk board so that when I get my coffee every morning it gives my that little smile to start my day.

Kitchen doodle

This doodle wasn’t my most imaginative I will admit but if like me, you don’t have a whole lot going on in January other than trying to get back into the routine that is everyday life then this is a happy little reminder that yes it’s cold and dark outside but we are faced with the promise of warmer days to come!

That’s pretty much all that gets me through this month is knowing that we are that much closer to spring and the loving embrace that is a nice sunny day!

Hope you are all keeping well and belated New Year wishes to you all!

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Book Review – A Winter Flame by Milly Johnson

www.audible.co.uk/pd

I love that in the beginning Eve is a sceptic who due to previous heartache and loss detests Christmas but as the story progresses she starts to warm to the season.

She is left a theme park which is under construction on the orders of her late aunt. This is something which when she is first told believes to be a joke. She then finds out that the park is not her alone. She has been left this to share with a stranger whom she has never met. Her aunt was very fugal in life so when she find out that her out in motion the construction of a very lucrative business venture she is in awe. She has every intention to mussel out the partner she is landed with and run this place on her own.

Convinced that Mr Jaq Glass, but business partner, is a con man she makes it her mission to find out all she can about him. She discovers that he is an ex service man and that makes her blood boil given that her diseased fiancé wall killed in action.

She believes he is a fraud and to say that she detests him is an understatement.

Little does she know but he was chosen to reawaken her love for Christmas and encourage her to live again.

His arrogance and self assurance just makes her hate him that little but more than she already does.

As time goes on he manages thaw her frozen heart and help her to move on. Just when she thinks that she has lost him for good he comes back and she realises that he is what she has needed all along.

Safe to say that with all good Christmas stories they love happily ever after.

As a side note, the random articles that are dotted throughout this book from the local paper, The Daily Trumpet, are an absolute diamond and hilarious in their own right.

I rate this book ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

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Book Review – My One Month Marriage by Shari Low

www.audible.co.uk/pd

At first this book fried my head. It’s starts by listing everyone who is in the story and how they are related. My first thought was ‘oh Christ I’m never going to remember this so I hope they circle back around to it’! Safe to say they did thank god.

The story focuses on the lives of 4 sisters. Each very different in their own way. We have one workaholic party animal, one who works as a nurse but her caring side continues much further than the hospital, one who absolutely has to control everything down to a millisecond and the 4th sister is practically a stranger in her own family. She doesn’t share anything about her life and is so shut off that she doesn’t realise how much that has affected her life.

This story seems that one man can affect this family so much when he gets involved with one of the sisters and whilst this is true the revelation is that all of their behavioural habits stem back to another man in their lives than none of them dare mention.

Once one man is ejected from their lives and they acknowledge the effect that the departure of the other has had on them that they actually start heal, reconcile and realise what each of them has needed all along.

I rate this story ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

If you’ve read this book, I would love to hear your opinions.

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National Cappuccino Day

Apparently today is National cappuccino day and I welcome this beautiful day with open arms! I love coffee everyday but a Cappuccino has to be my fave! It’s my go to beverage every morning and a great way to kick start the day.

This time of year a cappuccino is the perfect companion on a cold wet windy day.

Show some appreciation for one I made yesterday 👇

I’ve dubbed this one a Potter Coffee ⚡️

Hope your all enjoying a warm one today whether it is from your desk at the office, at home or with friends.

Here’s wishing you a great day no matter what you’re up to.

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Book Review – An Autumn Crush by Millie Johnson

www.audible.co.uk/pd

I love listening to stories that reflect the time of year we are currently in. This is the third one from this author I have listened to now. It was a nice heartwarming story about new love, old and new friendships and the funny way that life has of surprising us when we least expect it. This story touches on the topic of online dating and now uncertainty this can bring.

The great thing about this book is that there are little autumn quotes between the chapters and I do love a good quote! 🥰

Although I loved this book, I feel that it ended a little too abruptly for my liking but it was still a great story.

I rate this story 4 stars

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Happy autumn everyone 🍂

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Book Review – The Plus One Pact by Portia Mackintosh

www.audible.co.uk/pd

I absolutely loved this book. It’s funny, relatable and feel good.

I love the character of Cara, nerdy but cool and very single. She has tried the whole dating app thing which has produced a number of undesirable characters. Then just as she is about to give up she meets Millsy in a bar. From here, her whole life changes. Millsy picks her up out of her mundane life and shows her all the things she could be doing. Essentially they become each others plus one to all up and coming events over the summer.

After Clara having a makeover (courtesy of Millsy’s connections) she feels like a whole new woman. More confident, outgoing and daring.

It’s a very will they won’t they situation as Clara clears fancies the pants off Millsy but also doesn’t know if it’s reciprocated and is petrified of ruining their friendship.

Without spoiling the ending I will leave it at all’s well that ends well.

This is probably the best story I have ready in a while. Literally made me laugh out loud at times.

I rate this ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

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Book Review – The Secret to Happiness by Jessica Redland

www.audible.co.uk/pd

I liked this story especially the friendship element of it and they way that all three women have their own stuff going on and despite the fact that their friendship is very new they make time for each other. I must say that this is a bit of a man bashing story. Whilst I know there are men out there who don’t know how to treat a woman if it kills them this really does shine a magnifying glass up to this. I spend most of this book raging at the mens actions and decisions.

It’s lovely that all 3 women have found someone better suited to them by the end and despite the distance between them they all remain good friends.

I would rate this book ⭐️⭐️⭐️

Have you read this book? If so I would love your thoughts on it.

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🍁 Hello Autumn 🍂

It’s that time of year again where we bid a reluctant farewell to summer and welcome the warm cosy embrace of autumn. Last night we had thunder storms which meant it got dark real early. I’m not normally a fan of the long nights but I’ve changed the batteries in my candles and string lights. I lit every candle in the house and actually found time to sit and chill on the sofa with Sienna for an hour or so before bed. I must say after weeks on end of sitting in the garden all night it was really nice. I really was in my happy place.

Hallway sign updated – Autumn Vibes

Autumn to me is staying in, lighting candles, watching a series on Netflix and enjoying some family time!

Every year autumn is fast becoming by favourite season. I love the opportunity it brings to bust out your cost sweaters, scarves, hats and gloves.

The shops are full of Halloween deco’s already and I think we will be adding some new stuff to the decorations we already have. I hope to get some bits before the end of this month so that we can decorate from the beginning of October.

I will keep you posted on our shopping extravaganza once we have been.

Hope you are all staying safe. Here’s to enjoying some quality family time and cosy nights!

P.s. I also updated my chalk board sign and just want to add it to this post.

Hello Pumpkin 🎃
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Book review – The Secrets of Ivy Garden by Catherine Furguson

www.audible.co.uk/pd

This was a nice story. Although a little sad at times with reference to the death of Holly’s parent followed by the death of her grand mother Ivy.

Holly, totally alone in the world and deciding to fix up and sell up her grandmothers cottage doesn’t have it easy when she finds that the cottage had flooded and garden which was much loved by her grandmother has been destroyed by recent storms doesn’t let these set backs phase her and gets stuck in wholeheartedly. Following the discovery of her grandmothers diary and the revelation that the man she had always thought was her grandfather discovers that Ivy actually had a secret lover who was in fact her mothers biological father. This sets Holly on a path to discover who the mysterious B is.

Assisted by a friend she begins her search one person at a time. She makes friends with local shop owners daughter who soon discovers Holly grave fear of the wide open countryside which is a natural reaction to the circumstances surrounding her parents death.

Following the first unconventional meeting between Holly and Ben there are feelings that they both share but as with all great love stories this takes time for it to become apparent to each other.

This story has a lovely happy ending where Holly finds that she is no longer alone in the world but she in fact has a whole family that she didn’t know anything about before going to Appleton and with her new relationship with Ben just getting started she has found that the countryside is no longer something to be feared but I may well be a place to call home.

To sum up I would rate this book

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

If your looking for a lighthearted read this is the one for you.

Happy reading everyone!

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National Dog Day!

Happy National Dog Day to all my animal loving friends! Whether your the four legged variety or two I hope your all enjoying the day!

Owning a dog is a the creation of a bond like no other! They are fiercely loyal, great company, and top laughs with their cheeky naughty antics!

I’ve recently taken on Jack’s sister Gypsy after their mother passed from old age! As she craves company it seemed only right to bring her home with me! She has taken to like at our house perfectly.

Gypsy Lou

Although I will admit Jack was a nightmare in the beginning. From being King of the house for so long to having to company 24/7 and having to share food, water and cuddles he had finally adjusted really well.

Because they were both entire when we brought her up with us we had to get one of them neutered because incest is not a good thing for matter what species you are! Gypsy drew the short straw and had to face the knife. She was an absolute trooper about it all and was back to her self within a couple of days!

This was Jack and Gypsy snuggling in her recovery suit shortly after her surgery ❤️

On the topic of National Dog Day I thought this would be a good opportunity to list the benefits of having a four legged member of the family!

  • They keep you fit – walking you furry friend is the best kind of exercise! They get you out and about in places you may not normally venture.
  • You will never be lonely – they are the constant companion who will listen to your every thought without passing judgement! There’s no feeling in the world like coming home to someone who is always happy to see you!
  • They lower your stress levels – stroking a dog has been proven to lower stress levels. It’s also been proven that dog owners have lower blood pressure levels than those who don’t own a pet.
  • They can help you make friends – people are more likely to stop and chat with you if you have a pet making it the perfect opportunity to make new friends.
  • They can improve your immune system – because they bring all sorts of germs into the house they can help you build up immunity to thinks you wouldn’t normally come into contact with.
  • They make you feel safe – even if your home alone, having a pet with you gives the company that one craves and makes you feel safer than if you were home alone! Unless you have a dog like Jack who barks at absolutely everything which makes you wonder if people are roaming around your garden in the dark 😂

All in all, owning a dog is the best thing in the world! my dogs are crazy and weird but I wouldn’t change them for the world!

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Harley Merlin and the Secret Coven – Book Review

They dubbed this series of books the next Harry Potter. I wouldn’t go that far. Yes they’re both technically orphans who have magical powers and neither find out about the magical world until they are older but that’s were the similarities end.

I enjoyed the book but I feel that the story took a long time to get going and just as you get into it the book ends. It’s not the sort of story that’s tied up neatly by the end as it practically ends on a cliff hanger. Perhaps that’s smart writing on the authors part to entice you to read the next one. Either way it worked and I have now started the second book to find out what happened.

This is an enjoyable story filled with magic, demons and bad guys as you would expect. However, as I have said don’t expect this book to be anything like the Harry Potter books because it’s not.

I would rate this book an optimistic 4/5

XO – Mel

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November 2020

Hello November from Wallis Drive

It’s that time of year again when we pack away our Halloween decorations and spend a month in limbo before the Xmas decorations come out!

I like to take this month to finish off any home deco projects that need seeing to before the carnage that is Christmas descends! Most of my projects will involve a fresh coat of paint so it’s nothing major.

We celebrated Halloween at home this weekend due to the latest lockdown. We had pumpkin carving which got real messy but the results were worth it!

Pumpkin carving 2020 @ Wallis Drive

Sienna was really excited for Halloween this year so it was a real shame that we couldn’t take her trick or treating! But because we couldn’t take the girl out for Halloween, we brought Halloween to the girl! We had a little party with buffet style food and music, and we danced around our living room like lunatics 😂 it was great!

Stay at home Halloween 2020 @ Wallis Drive

After what can only be considered as a year to write off, the little things like bonfire night, which I will be enjoying with my family at home, is really something to look forward to. We have got some little fireworks from our local shop and we intend to have our own little display.

I hope you are all keeping safe and making the best of a bad situation!

All my love, Mel

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Wedding Night by Sophie Kinsella – Book Review

I have just finished reading Wedding Night by Sophie Kinsella. It’s the story of a thirty something woman called Lottie who’s track record with love is less than impressive.

With every break up follows a bad decision and the latest is no different.

She meets Ben who in my opinion is a bit of a sleaze ball and is someone she had a holiday romance with years ago and in a whirl wind kind of situation they decide to get married but keep the sex for the honeymoon.

This leads to the whole book being about how much he wants it and how much she keeps telling him to wait and starts to become a big of a bore in my opinion.

In the end her ex tracks her down on her honeymoon accompanied by her meddling sister and Bens best friend / work colleague and all is right with the world again!

I would give this book

It’s a good read but not one I would pick up again in a hurry!

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Up-cycled Coffee & Side Tables

Back last year I bought a new coffee table and because I’m a lover of all things rose gold of course it had to be that colour. I searched and searched for months for the right style coffee table, and although there were plenty on the market they all seemed to have a black glass top which looks amazing when it clean but by god it doesn’t half attract the dust even when it’s just been wiped!

I didn’t want to get rid of the tables because one was a gift and the other less than a year old but something had to give as I was losing the war against the dust and mixed in with dribble finger prints from my one year old they always looked dirty!

You can see the dust on them here and they had just been cleaned!

I decided that I would like to update these with a marble top and as real marble is so expensive we opted to go for the cheaper alternative and wrap the tops in a marble effect vinyl. It has taken months to find marble effect vinyl that was long enough to wrap the tops without a join but finally this weekend we found the perfect roll in our local B&Q store.

As it was a flat surface it was fairly easy to to do, It just took a few attempts to get all of the air bubbles out from under the vinyl but I am so pleased with the result.

By wrapping the tops of our tables it has lifted the room so much and they match our decor so much better now. I wish I had done this months ago. For the sake of £10 we have transformed the centre price of our living room at what I would consider to be a bargain!

Have any of you guys attempted to update your furniture with sticky back plastic / vinyl, if so I would love to see your projects.

Have a great Monday everyone!

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Be who you are and say what you think.

Those who mind, don’t matter.

Those who matter don’t mind.

Never have I uttered a truer phrase. When that time comes that you think about changing yourself whether it be your ways, appearance, or trying to change the things you enjoy to please someone else for someone else, just remember, the people who truly know you will accept you for who you are no matter what.

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November

autumn leaves

As we say good bye to October and put away the Halloween decorations for another year, it’s a time for an autumnal cleanse of the house before the Christmas madness sets in!

The leaves on the trees are turning from yellow to golden red and I for one am such a fan of this beautiful month.


I hope you all had an enjoyable Halloween.  We dressed our little girl up as a witch this year which was without doubt the cutest thing I have ever seen! but I am biased! She refused to keep the hat on for even one photograph but she still looked cute non the less.

IMG_1746


This weekend is all about packing away the Halloween decorations. (I am not looking forward to this) there are way to many spiders webs in my house so I think I may be there a while with this chore.  Then I think its time for a mega clean.

On that note I will bid you a due and hope you all have a great weekend.

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Morning Postivity

Saw this online this morning and thought it might bring some joy to someone’s day to share it.

Always love the things you are passionate about even if it’s not run of the mill or the cool thing to do.

Always be who you are. Don’t ever change for anyone!