Fleur Lucille

LIFESTYLE | TRAVEL | DISNEY | BEAUTY

Wednesday, 24 February 2021

Trying Hello Fresh for 2 weeks | February 2021

I had seen a lot about Hello Fresh and the meal boxes that you can receive but had never got around to taking the plunge and trying a box. As part of one of my Glossyboxes there was a leaflet included which had a discount offer to two boxes so thought that this was a good time to try out Hello Fresh and see what it is all about. 

Keep reading for more details around our experience and the meals that we chose as part of the two weeks trial offer. 

As part of your Hello Fresh delivery you will get everything that you need to make the number of meals that you ordered. For our Hello Fresh delivery, our orders were based upon 2 people and we went with 4 meals. These can both be changed depending on the number of people that you need the boxes for and you can choose the number of meals that you want included. 

Once you have signed up for Hello Fresh and have decided upon when you want to have your delivery and the number of meals etc. there is then the option to select your meals. There is a list of meals that you can select based upon the options that you choose (including whether you want family meals, rapid meals etc). You will find that there are some meals which are classed as premium and therefore there is an additional charge as well as the option to add on sides if you want to. 

When you receive you Hello Fresh box, you will find that there are recipe cards for each meal within your box alongside there being a bag for each meal of all the ingredients needed. Your box will also have an ice pack bag for your products that need to be refrigerated. We really liked how there was a bag for every meal all sorted and organised as that makes it easier when making each of the meals. 

Week 1

For Week1 of trying Hello Fresh, we went with the following meals:

  • Spiced Pork Ragu
  • Beany Beef and Bacon Loaded Sweet Potatoe Wedges
  • Middle Eastern-style Beef Stew
  • Mexican Style Beef Loaded Wedges

This was the Spiced Pork Ragu and we absolutely loved this recipe, it was really easy to follow and very tasty. Would definitely recommend this meal if it comes up in your selection of choices. 

The Beany Beef and Bacon Loaded Sweet Potatoe Wedges was another meal that we both enjoyed and was quite quick to make. One thing to note especially when you have a number of meals that use the same ingredients (e.g. beef) is to make sure that you check the weight listed on the back of the receipt card and pick the correct one from your products. We got ours mixed up in the recipes from this week but it all worked out in the end. 

Middle Eastern-style Beef Stew recipe was not what we had originally expected when you think o f a stew but this has turned out to be one of our favourites which we have gone on to cook more as part of our weekly meals. 

The Mexican Style Beef Loaded Wedges was similar to one of our other meals this week but there were some differences to how it was made, again this was a really tasty meal that we both enjoyed. This one did take longer to cook than some of the other recipes due to it being baked in the oven but as long as you take the timings detailed in to consideration then it shouldn't be an issue. 

Week 2

For week 2, we chose the following meals from the selection available. 

  • Speady Creamy Chorizo & Sweetcorn Pasta
  • Green Thai Style Chicken Curry
  • Penne Ragu Al Forno
  • Thai Style Pork Rice Bowl

The Speady Creamy Chorizo & Sweetcorn Pasta was one of those meals that has become a favourite of ours since making it for the first time as part of this Hello Fresh box. We both really enjoyed it and have made it a number of times since and have also changed some of the ingredients slightly (chorizo for bacon) and it still works really well. 



This was the first time that we have made a Green Thai Chicken Curry and we were both surprised about how nice this meal was quite quick to make as was listed as one of the rapid meals. 



The next meal that we had was Penne Ragu Al Forno and as pasta lovers we really enjoyed this recipe and was quite simple to make. It is always worth noting the time indication for how long it takes to make and cook as similar to one of the recipes above this was a baked pasta dish so took a bit longer to prep. 



The last dish of our box was the Thai Style Pork Rice Bowl and out of all of the meals that we made this was probably our least favourite. Whilst it was still tasty it definitely didn't look like the picture on the meal card so we aren't sure as to whether it was something that we did during cooking or got some of the ingredients incorrect. We would try it again if it appeared in our next selections to see if we do anything different whether it would look more like the pictures on the recipe card. 



We have continued to use Hello Fresh and now get a box once a month as a way of mixing up recipes for dinner. This has been really useful as we have found some really lovely meals that we have since gone on and made again after having them initially in a Hello Fresh box. 

Have you tried Hello Fresh before and what are your favourite recipes of the boxes that you have had?






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Monday, 15 February 2021

Glossybox - Sing Dance Love Repeat | February 2021

I haven't done as many posts about the Glossyboxes that I have received since just before Christmas due to everything being really busy in the lead up to the festive season, I will try and catch-up on these as I had a number of special edition boxes that it will be good to share the review on. 

The theme for February 2021 Glossybox is Sing Dance Love Repeat which is perfect given that we have just had valentines day. The link to music with this box is from the love of music at Glossy HQ and I agree there are definitely songs that you can't stop singing so can understand how this has been linked. I really like the theming and the design of the box as makes it a bit different than the usual box that you receive. 


Just like other boxes that I have received, there was the usual 5 products that were contained within the box. The products in this month's box were all full sized products which there being no deluxe mini's this time. With all Glossyboxes, you receive a variation of the box, the box that I received was variation 1. 


Detailed below is a summary of the products that I received as part of February's Sing Dance Love Repeat box:
  1. Avant - Velvet Perfecting Rose Sugar Lip Scrub (full size)
  2. Nudestix - Gel colour Lip + Cheek Balm (full size)
  3. Bubble T Cosmetics - Peach Bellini Hand Cream (full size)
  4. Steve Laurant - Total Repair Lip Mask (full size)
  5. Glow on 5th - Rose Gua Sha (full size)
All products in this month's box are full sized and in total the box had a retail value of £97.99, which is amazing value considering the month subscription box and the quality of the products received. This is mainly due to the Avant product which is worth £58.00 and the Nudestix lip/cheek balm which is worth £20.00. 


Glow on 5th - Rose Gua Sha

This is a facial massage tool from Glow on 5th which can be used as part of your skincare routine. It is meant to help contour your face and neck to enhance your features. I already have a rose quartz roller that I use as part of my skincare so will definitely be giving this a try and see what benefits it brings. 


Bubble T Cosmetics - Peach Bellini Hand Cream

I don't know about you but with all the cold weather at the moment I am definitely getting through a lot more hand cream so this was great timing that this box included one of these. This is a peach bellini scented hand cream from Bubble T Cosmetics and as soon as I opened the box I had to give it try. It definitely does smell of peaches and made my hands feel moisturised, this is probably due to the ingredients including Aloe Vera extract and Shea Butter. Will enjoy using this hand cream and hopefully it will help my hands feel a lot better in this cold weather. 


Avant - Velvet Perfecting Rose Sugar Lip Scrub

Similar to when I saw that there was hand cream in this month's box, I was really pleased that there was this lip scrub from Avant as I have also been suffering from really dry lips. This lip scrub includes ingredients such as Rose, Peony Sweet Almond and is meant to buff away dead skin-cells to make your lips. I did try it as soon as I saw it in the box and it felt really nice on my lips but I didn't find that it was very exfoliating, this might have been because it was the first time of being used so I will definitely try it again and see if the results are different. 


Nudestix - Gel Colour Lip + Cheek Balm

This is a multipurpose make-up product from Nudestix that can be used as a tinted lip balm and as a natural cream blush. Given that it has just been valentines day I had been wearing a lot of red lip colours so thought that I would give it a go and see what the colour and texture is like. It is definitely very much like a lip balm but I was surprised by the amount of colour that it had but something that I will use again in the future. Not sure if I would use it as a cream blush as there is definitely a lot of colour to it but it may be something that blends out well, worth a try if you are into using cream blushes. 


Steve Laurant - Total Repair Lip Mask

As mentioned above, I am suffering from really dry lips at the moment so when I saw that there were two lip products in this box it was perfect timing. I have had a number of Steve Laurant products in previous Glossyboxes and have really liked them so am looking forward to trying out this lip mask. This lip mask is said to be hydrating and should soothe and revitalise lips, this is definitely something that I need at the moment. 

Hope you have enjoyed this review of February 2021 Glossybox, let me know if you also received this box and what your favourite item is?




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Sunday, 7 February 2021

Woodside Bay Lodge Retreat - Treehouse review | Isle of Wight | February 2021

2020 was a very strange year especially for travelling due to the Coronavirus pandemic, we had a number of holidays booked last year which all had to be canceled. We knew that we still wanted to get away to have a break after a tough few months and that it was looking likely to be a staycation within the UK during the summer months. We had previously been to the Isle of Wight a few years ago with family and absolutely loved it so this was the first place that we thought of as a potential holiday location. 

I wanted to go somewhere different and came across the treehouses at Woodside Bay Lodge Retreat. As soon as I saw the treehouse online I just knew that it was a place that we needed to visit. We booked our holiday through Hoseasons and our ferry tickets through Wight Link. Staying in the treehouse is quite expensive but after not having any breaks throughout the year we thought that it was worth it to get away somewhere special. 

There are two treehouses located at Woodside Bay Lodge Retreat, we stayed in the Firestone treehouse for 3 nights at the end of September 2020. There were some restrictions that were in place during our stay due to Coronavirus but they didn't impact our holiday too much as we managed to plan around them. For example the bistro was not opening but we were able to order food for contact free delivery to the treehouse.

Detailed below is some of the key information from staying in a treehouse. 

Location

Woodside Bay Lodge Retreat is located in Ryde and is very close to the Fishbourne Ferry terminal, it only takes about 12 minutes to get to the park from the ferry. The park is a beachside resort with a number of walks alongside water edge of the Isle of Wight. On a good weather day you can see right across the sea to Portsmouth. 


We absolutely loved that from the treehouse you can join the woodland walk and within minutes you can be on a private beach. On a good day you are able to see right across to Portsmouth but it can also be very windy as we found on a number of occasions! The sea is also so close to the treehouse that you can hear it when you wake up in the mornings, which is absolutely perfect for anyone who loves to be by the sea. 




Facilities

Staying in the treehouse is based upon self-catering and we found that it all the facilities that you needed. We didn't use a lot of them in terms of cooking as we brought food back that didn't need us to use the hob. The treehouse has a fully functioning kitchen that which includes a fridge, two ring hob, microwave, dishwasher and all the cookery and cutlery that you would need. 


As part of the products that are provide they do leave you with washing up liquid and dishcloth which is perfect for getting started. We did notice that there weren't any dishwasher tablets supplied so if you are staying for longer and would want to use the dishwasher, I would suggest bringing you own dishwasher tablets. 


The treehouse is open plan for the main living area/bedroom and the kitchen but has very separated areas but we loved how you could walk almost completely around the treehouse. 

When we arrived there were dressing gowns and slippers as well as toiletories on the bed which was perfect for using the hot tub. 



The bathroom was more like a wet room and had his and hers sinks as well as a walk-in shower. I loved the colour scheme that flowed through the tree house and the use of copper, made it feel really rustic and fitted in with the location. The bathroom was a perfect size and also enabled us to hang all our wet swimming clothes from the hot tub. The shower also had a waterfall shower head which was great and would love to have one of these at home. 




Hot tub and outside space

One of the main benefits of the treehouse for us was that it came with its own private hot tub. This was one of the features that we were most looking forward to as part of the holiday and had already planned the potential amount of times that we could use the hot tub during our stay. 

At the treehouse, the hot tub is buried into one of the decking levels and is fully covered which also acts as a stand when you are using the hot tub. When we arrived the hot tub was all set up and fully up to temperature, we knew that as soon as we had unpacked that we were going to be in the hot tub after a long day of travelling. 


The hot tub that we had is suitable for up to 4 adults and has waterfall as well a coloured lights and you can set the temperature depending on how hot you like the water. 

We really enjoyed waking up early in the mornings and getting in the hot tub to see the sunrise and hear the birds and the sea, this was a perfect start to our day! We also liked to end the day in the hot tub which was the perfect way to relax after a long day exploring. 

We loved the hot tub so much that we even had to used it on the morning of us checking out, the hot tub really did make our stay in the tree house extra special. From walking round the park I noticed that there were a number of the individual lodges that also had private hot tubs so there are definitely a lot of options if you did want to have your own hot tub. 

In addition to the hot tub there is plenty of other outside seating areas with the treehouses. By the entrance door there is a hanging egg chair which is perfect for lazy afternoons reading a book and listening to the sea. On the same level is also a patio table and chairs, these were perfect for eating our breakfast at and seeing all the nature in the forest. Next to the hot tub there is also a bench with cushions available from the store box, there are plenty of different options when wanting to sit outside. All of these overlook you own private pathway from your car parking space which joins the woodland walk. 


This path has locked gates on both ends, one tip is to make sure that both of these are properly locked during your stay. We found on our first evening that the gate at one end wasn't locked properly and that when we came back from a walk people were walking around and looking into the treehouse out of curiosity. We managed to fix this after this and didn't have any other issues throughout our stay. 



If you want to see more of the treehouse at Woodside Bay Lodge Retreat as well as the places that we visited on our trip to the Isle of Wight, check out my two travel blogs below on my YouTube channel. Part 1 of the vlog includes a tour of the Firestone treehouse. 



Hope you found this blog and the videos useful if you are thinking of staying in a treehouse. We are hoping that we will be able to re-book our cancelled stay as soon as possible as we absolutely loved staying in the treehouse and know that if you book to stay there you will too. 






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