March 20th brought us the official beginning of spring… traditionally a time to dust off the cobwebs and freshen up our homes!
Here are a few useful tips to help you on your way to a sunny, shiny home.
Firstly start with getting rid of the clutter that you don’t need and with that out of the way it will be a lot easier.
Remember Rome wasn’t built in a day so tackle one room at a time and remember you don’t have to finish the whole house in one day. This is the big Spring Clean so you’ve got to move furniture and appliances and get under beds so don’t exhaust yourself, pace yourself and don’t forget the all important ‘tea breaks’.
The Oven – this can be a very messy job so if it is something you just hate doing call a professional oven cleaning service to get the job done – it will look as good as new after.
Get the family to help, I know easier said than done, delegate jobs to the teenagers, other-half, even have toddlers pick up toys this could all be encouraged by a little reward i.e. trip to the cinema etc.
Spring Clean the Eco-Friendly way – all you need to do is arm yourself with three magic ingredients – vinegar, bicarbonate of soda (baking soda) and lemon juice – read this great Mumsnet guide to eco-friendly cleaning.
If your life is too hectic and you just don’t have enough time well then consider hiring a professional cleaning service who will save you all the stress and hassle and you will have a lovely clean home to enjoy.
Getting organised – You will probably have to top up on products so buy all necessary cleaning supplies, tools, and cleaners and then pick a room and start. You could even order online and have it all delivered as they can be very bulky so take the hassle out of lugging it all home.
There are lots of offers at the moment from the major supermarkets on cleaning products so shop wisely! Here’s what we found:-
Tesco – Cif Power/Pro £2.99 buy 1 get 1 free. They also have a whole range of their own brand products at 2 for £1.20. And you can take advantage of their offer ‘Spend £40 this week and receive £5 off next shop”
Sainsburys – Domestos Zero was £1.99 now £1.00, Mr Muscle Sink and Plughole Unblocker was £3.95 now £2.95 and Every time you buy any of these featured products a donation from the item price will be made to Sport Relief.
Waitrose – 3 for 2 offer on selected cleaning products if you buy 2 items you add a 3rd Free (get the cheapest free).
Ocado – are also doing buy any three products and get the cheapest one free. Also it is worth remembering that Ocado are offering £10 off your first order online so if you haven’t ordered online from them before this is a great opportunity to have it all delivered to your door! Visit our Ocado voucher page for the latest and greatest Ocado discounts.
Mothers Day is the perfect day to eat out and give Mum a well deserved break from cooking Sunday Lunch. Due to the popularity of eating in a restaurant on Mother’s day it can be difficult to find restaurant offers.
However, we did find some restaurants offering special Mothers Day Treats… here are our pick of the best Restaurants Deals for Mothers day.
Chiquito’s Mum Dines for Free
Why not try a Mexican feast for Mothers day – choose from a selection of starter, main courses and desserts. The promotion entitles ‘Mum’ to a Free Main Course from the menu when another adult in the party purchases a main meal. Valid at participating restaurants only.
Harvester Main Courses from just £4.99
At Harvester marking Mum’s day doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg. You can choose from a range of tasty main courses from just £4.99 and mum can pick her own unlimited Mothers Day treats from the salad bar.
Loch Fyne Seafood Restaurant Free Glass of Wine
If Seafood is your thing try Loch Fyne, they are offering a three course menu for £19.95 which includes steamed mussels, smoked haddock, char-grilled rump steak and pear and cinnamon crumple. If you dine after 6pm there’s a complimentary glass of Prosecco for each adult.
Ask Italian Free Proseco for each Mum
Ask the very popular Italian Restaurant have a good Mothers Day Menu – 2 courses for £12.95 or 3 courses for £15.95 per person and Free glass of Prosecco for each Mum in the party.
Sizzling Pubs – Two Meals and Two Drinks £9.99 Voucher
For some great traditional pub grub why not try Sizzling Pubs… if you dine at a Sizzling Pub on Mother’s Day you will receive a voucher to be used between 19th March and 20th April. This entitles you to 2 meals and 2 drinks for only £9.99. (two persons) There are now more than 200 locations throughout the UK so a useful voucher to have!
Prezzo Free Glass of Prosecco
Presso’s is another popular Italian restaurant renowned for offering a quality menu and great value for money. If you go visit on Mother’s Day… mums will be treated to a Free glass of Prosecco Wine.
Let us know you Mother’s Day plans in the comments.
However you celebrate Mothers Day have a lovely time and to all Mums out there…
‘Have a Happy Mother’s Day’
If your one of the UK’s loyal Tesco clubcard holders then you will be very familiar with the companies popular clubcard voucher exchange programme.
The tesco clubcard is a loyalty scheme which rewards cardholders with savings on a wide range of products such as grocery items, holidays, restaurants and even vouchers for high-street stores.
However it is imporant to remember that all Tesco clubcard vouchers have an expiry date. Tesco do generously allow a validity period of two years and the expiry date is printed on each and every voucher.
If you find that your vouchers have gone out of date there may be little you can do to claim your rewards, unfortnatly Tesco explicily say in their terms and conditions that voucher must be used with in the valid period. Vouchers which have expired will no longer be valid or accepted.
Even with these very clear terms you may find that if your voucher has recently expired and has a considerable value, Tesco may let you redeem the voucher. The best advice is to contact the clubcard helpline on 0800 591 688 alternatvly you can email Tesco.
For more information visit the www.tesco.com
Remember use your vouchers before they expire!
This week we have searched the internet for the UK’s yummiest online food competitions. We all love a freebie and there is certainly no shortage of great prizes up for grabs from some of the UK’s best loved food brands.
So if you fancy winning an unlimited amount of chocolate for the whole year, enough hampers to fill your whole living room or perhaps a cooking course with a world renowned chef then take a look at some of the competitions below.
There are many kinds of competitions, in most cases you will have to enter your name and email address and also answer a simple question. It is also sensible to make sure you are fully aware of the competitions terms and conditions before entering!
With out further ado lets take a look at the competitions.
The first competition is a must for any pie lovers. Piemaster kicks off a bumper year with a chance to win An England Shirt signed by the whole squad and enough rugby pies to feed a whole team.
Closing date 3rd March 2012.
Hot Dinners are celebrating St.Patricks Day (17th March) and are giving away two hampers full of Irish goodies.
Marco Pierre White’s Wheelers Restaurant win a meal for two with Marco at his flagship restaurant Wheelers, The Kings Arms
Channel 4 Food win a Masterclass with the Heas Chef at Restuarant Gordon Ramsay…. closing date 29th Feb
The Telegraph newspaper are giving away a case of 12 unique Whiskey Drinks from the Scotch Malt Whisky Society – closing date 1 March 201
Clipper Teas have 10 Breakfast Sets to give away so you could be loving breakfast really soon…
Walkers Crisps are running a competition ‘Whats that Flavour’ guess and win £50.00
Fudges every month you could win a Hamper packed full of tasty goodies
Cartmel Village Shop hold a monthly draw for the chance to win a case of delicious Cartmel Puddings
Waitrose Supermarket win a hamper packed full of Pimm’s Winter Goodies Hamper, plus £100 worth of Waitrose Vouchers
Good Luck and have fun!!!
With the cost and hassle of trying to find somewhere to eat on Valentines Day more couples than ever are predicted to stay at home rather than dine out on Valentine’s Day. Supermarkets, of course, have risen to the occasion by offering Valentines Meal Deal at restaurrant quality, or so they claim. We have seen competitive marketing campaigns by all the big chains as they battle it out to entice you to buy their romantic dine-in meal deal.
These offers are great for couples who want to have a romantic dinner at home without spending too much cash and being both convenient and a treat it certainly has its attractions.
Below are the top Meal Deals (for two people) available for Valentines Day at supermarkets… near you!
Marks and Spencers ‘Love-in’ £20
You Get: choices in.. starters, main course, side dish, dessert, chocolates and a bottle of Cava
Sainsburys Valentines Meal Deal £10
You Get: choices in… starter, main course, side dish, dessert, chocolates and a bottle of wine
Tesco Finest Valentines Meal £15
You Get: main course, side dish, dessert and a bottle of cava
Waitrose Valentines Meal £20
You Get: main courtse, two side dishes, dessert (or cheese) and a bottle of sparkling wine (or chocolates)
Asda Dine-in Extra Special Range £10
You Get: starter, main course, side dish, dessert and bottle of wine
The Co-operative Meal Deal £12
You Get: main course two side dishes, dessert and bottle of cava
Morrisons Valentines Meal Deal £10
You Get: main course, side dish, dessert, chocolates and bottle of wine
Before you make that final decision to dine-in or out for Valintines have a read of Tessa Cunningham’s article ‘Can you woo your Valintine with a cheesy chicken ready meal’
Happy Valentines Day
The Chinese New Year is on 23rd January and this year it is the Year of the Dragon…. the dragon is said to deliver good fortune which would be much appreciated.
We all love chinese food so why not celebrate the Chinese New Year and serve up your favourite oriental dishes at home for family or friends. For some of us this can be a bit daunting but Sainsbury’s and Blue Dragon together will show you ‘How to have a Restaurant Experience at home’ its easy and very tasty. Go to http://www.sainsburys.co.uk/groceries/ click on ‘Ideas’ then Chinese New Year and click on Stir Fry Tips (which is underlined).
To celebrate the New Year, Blue Dragon has teamed up with head chef and founder of the School of Wok, Jeremy Pang, to help get Britain cooking delicious oriental cuisines at home. Stir fries are great, quick and easy and here Jeremy gives his Top Stir Tips such as his secret to the perfect stir fry is to make sure the oil is piping hot before you put the ingredients in the pan or wok…. because it is a fast cooking process make sure all of your cutting and chopping is done beforehand and is close to hand….. also if stir frying shellfish like prawns or shrimps make sure they go into the wok last so they don’t become chewy and over-cooked. There are lots more good tips to show you how to add those extra little details and there is also advice on using chopsticks and napkin folding.
But the best part in serving up this great chinese meal is that you can save money as Sainbury’s have on offer a selection of Blue Dragon Sauces for £1.00 per unit…. Chinese Curry Sauce, Chow Mein Sauce, Peking Sticky Sauce and Sweet and Sour Sauce all of these and lots more for just £1.00.
These offers are valid for delivery before 24th Jan 2012.
Lastly Blue Dragon are offering the chance for you to win one of 25 ‘Jeremy Pang Culinary Experiences’ see details Online at Sainsbury’s.com
So Happy Chinese New Year on the 23rd and wishing you all good fortune for 2012
I only came across Diet Chef lately when I saw it advertised on television and thought, this is a really good idea, especially for a busy person on the go wanting to lose some weight. With ‘do-it-yourself menu based diets’ you really have to be organised when shopping for the right ingredients, then there is of course the weighing and measuring and lastly having to cook it all.
The idea of receiving a months worth of pre-prepared healthy and tasty food seems a bit to good to be true but this is what the Diet Chef service promises.
Diet Chef delivers to your door, a hamper full of chef prepared ready meals for breakfast, lunch and dinner, not forgetting some healthy snacks for those hunger pangs. It is really easy and fast as all the meals require no more than a quick turn in the microwave or saucepan.
Diet Chef reviews your personal profile to create a tailored programme
The meals contain healthy ingredients and are calorie controlled (1,200 daily calories) there are a wide variety of meals so you never get bored… porridge and granola for breakfast, soups or milkshakes for lunch, and pastas, curries, hot pots and more for dinner. However, don’t expect milk or fresh fruit or vegetables in the hamper so you will need to buy these separately – Diet Chef recommend that you supplement their meals with some fresh fruit and vegetables and milk each day. Diet Chef claims that there is a hamper for everyone… all hampers can be fully tailored to suit individual needs and tastes including vegetarian options.
You also get a ‘all you need to know’ 48 page guide to the diet covering how the diet works, exercise, help for eating out and lots more. You have access to their forum which offers a great place to get tips and encouragement from other people while also sharing your progress. It is also good to note that there is are specially trained diet advisors on hand to offer support and practical advice whenever you need it.
So what does all this good, tasty, healthy nutritionally planned food, prepared by a chef and delivered to your door cost… well surprisingly it is very cost effective, probably not much more than you already spend on your individual weekly shop maybe even less!
There are three Options:
Pay monthly for 3 months (£39 per week) £195 for 35 days. Free delivery
Pay monthly for 2 months (£42 per week) £210 for 35 days. Free delivery
Pay as you Go – 28 days (£56 per week) £220 for 28 days. £4.95 delivery charge
The Best Value is the 3 month plan which works out at £5.57 a day
And don’t forget there’s the Free Week when you pay monthly
Also 21 day money back guarantee if you’re not completely satisfied.
The website is very easy and clear to use and it only takes moments to place an order. You simply complete a short Personal Profile which will tell you how many calories you need, choose your hamper and payment option, then choose your breakfasts, lunches, dinners and snacks from a list, enter your credit or depit card details and your hamper will be delivered within two days.
Don’t forget your Diet Chef Discount, save £10 on your first order.
Visit the Diet Chef website to get started, here’s to a fit and healthy 2012 and if you are on a diet or planning to go on one we wish you every success!!!