Category: Life

Six tips for having restful sleep this World Sleep Day – world sleep day

The inability to sleep and insomnia was quietly becoming a pandemic among Brits before the Coronavirus pandemic hit. And the stress caused by lockdowns, unemployment, addiction to screens and the general disruption to our normal routines can’t help but exacerbate the situation.
So this World Sleep Day, let’s go back to basics with some helpful tips on how to get some much needed quality sleep.

  1. Have a consistent sleep schedule
    No matter how your life has been affected, it’s important to keep a regular routine in order to get good sleep. Going to bed and waking up at the same time helps maintain the circadian rhythm – the body’s 24-hour internal clock. Also, try and wake up earlier as you’ll feel more tired by the end of the day, helping you to fall asleep.
  2. Create a personalised bedtime routine
    Having a relaxing ritual before bed is a great way to notify your mind and body that it’s time to go to sleep. Try a warm bath or reading a book. Other activities you could incorporate into your bedtime routine include completing your skincare routine, practicing some mindfulness meditation, or listening to a relaxing podcast – as long as it helps you to unwind and feel calm before bed, anything works.
  3. Switch off your electrical devices
    The internet has proved to be an invaluable tool for communication and entertainment during a time in which people across the world have been mandated to self-quarantine or shelter in place. However, bright lights before bed can stimulate us, again interfering with a person’s circadian rhythm. Turning off your electronic devices an hour before bedtime is a powerful intervention to help with sleep – go on try it for two weeks!
  4. Consider trying a traditional herbal remedy (THR)
    Using a herbal remedy can help to relieve stress and improve sleep. Valerian root is a popular choice that has long been used to promote relaxation, reduce stress and improve sleep, depending on the quantities consumed. Traditional herbal remedies such as Kalms Night One-A-Night Tablets can be used to improve sleep without experiencing drowsiness the next day, while Kalms Day helps to relieve stress.
  5. Get outside
    Lockdown makes it all too easy to sit indoors at our desk all day but getting outside and exposing yourself to natural light plays an important role in keeping your body clock in balance. Exposure to outdoor light helps to regulate a hormone in your body called melatonin, which helps to regulate your sleep and wake patterns. Getting outside when it’s light is especially important at this time of year when daylight hours are much shorter.
  6. Eat well and exercise
    With lots of us still at home, it’s easy to spend a lot of time sitting and making unhealthy food choices. Studies have shown that regular exercise and being active during the day can help you sleep better by relieving any worry or anxiety you have. Whether it’s taking a brisk walk at lunch or completing an online workout, make sure you keep your body moving each day.

    Maintaining a healthy diet is also linked to good sleep. Avoid eating large meals late at night, as these can cause indigestion and affect your sleep. Try and have a light dinner earlier in the evening and drink enough water during the day.

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Relaxing scented candles to get you through the winter blues. – winter candle scents

Traditionally, January has always been a difficult month. It somehow manages to be too long, and the weather too cold – bringing on the winter blues.

Add the Covid lockdown into the mix and that triples the misery January brings, leaving most of us struggling to cope. Lighting a scented candle is one way to calm yourself down so here five scented candles that will not only bring warmth into your home but also help calm your mind.


An ancient scent with a lingering aroma for your home; frankincense is perfect for this time of year as it’s light and warm. It’s also a natural stress-reliever, making it perfect for relaxing.

Juniper Berry

Woody and spicy with a clean scent; Juniper Berry is perfect for this season. It has a calming and grounding effect and can also be diffused to help cleanse and purify the air in your home.


Bergamot is great for elevating your mood and alleviating stress. Light a bergamot infused candle to calm yourself when things get stressful.


Rich and aromatic, fig is popular in Middle Eastern homes for a reason. It smells fruity, dense, and sophisticated – perfect for winter.


Everybody loves the scent of vanilla! It’s also a potent relaxer and almost instantly boosts happiness levels. Vanilla is perfect for elevating your mood and getting rid of irritations.

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6 ways to beat the January blues when you’re stuck at home – how to get over January blues

Are you feeling the January blues? It’s bleak outside, and you’re lacking the motivation to kick start your New Year resolutions plus you’re stuck at home working. Without the re-assuring repetitiveness of your daily commute and the friendly banter from your co-workers, you may be feeling down and demotivated.

Here are some tips to help you cope with January blues:

Set New Year Goals

Make sure that you understand what your longer-term goal is and the impact you are looking for. Ensure your goals are manageable and achievable. This will help you make a start, and it increases the likelihood of you sustaining the effort beyond the first few weeks of the new year.

Create a routine

Structure makes our brains happy because the patterns allow our brain to go into autopilot. Establishing a set routine (with some room for flexibility) will give your day some structure. This should make you more efficient, productive and hopefully more at ease in these uncertain times.

Be Prepared

Feeling as prepared as possible will also help you feel less nervous and more confident. At the beginning of each week, make a work schedule. Of course, things are bound to come up at the last moment but outlining a list of tasks will stop you from feeling overwhelmed. Schedule no more than 90% of your time instead of 100%; some unexpected tasks are bound to appear, and some jobs take longer than expected. Remember, planned flexibility is part of being prepared. 

Have a designated workspace

Working in bed may be comfortable in the beginning but it also leads to back issues in the long run. And working in bed probably won’t put your mind in ‘work mode’, so try and set a special work area. If you don’t have a desk, the dining room table or even the sofa are better places to work than your bed.

Get outdoors

Seeing the same four walls non-stop isn’t good for anyone. Exercising outdoors will stop you feeling lethargic from sitting on your rump all day. Try and go for a walk or a run early before the start of the day or at lunchtime to refresh yourself in the middle of the day.

Stick to your work hours

Finally, we’re all aware of how bad screen time can be for your health.  So, unless you have a particular deadline that you need to hit, you should stick to your structured work hours as much as possible. It’s important to be able to relax after your workday and not keep thinking about work. This is easier to do if you shut the laptop and ignore your emails from the moment your workday ends.

These tips should get you over the January blues and get your new year off to a productive  start. Let us know if you have any tricks and tips you use to get over the winter blues in the comments below.

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5 Nolo picks we’re loving this Christmas

The Nolo (no or low) alcohol lifestyle is the fastest growing trend in the UK, and if you fall in that category, there’s no need for you to feel left out this festive season. There are a LOT of options to choose from. Here are our top five must have Nolo drinks on your Christmas shopping list:

Fortnum’s Sparkling Teas – nolo drinks

Fortnum’s new Sparkling Teas are perfect for festive celebrations and a must buy this Christmas. They’re fresh and crisp and contains zero alcohol.

There are two options, Original Sparkling Tea made with a certified organic blend of eight of rare brews. It has complex flavours and notes of tropical fruits on the nose, and a palate of lemongrass, water mint and Darjeeling, leading into drier tannins and a long-lasting hint of jasmine on the finish.

For rosé lovers, there’s Rosé Sparkling Tea – a wonderfully crisp and elegant rosé with a pale pink hue and a subtle sweetness.  It opens with notes of tropical fruits, cranberry, hints of ginger, and deep layers of Darjeeling – complemented by light, fresh Japanese Sencha.

These two are highly recommended for your Christmas shopping list. Buy here.

Wild Life Botanicals – nolo drinks

Another great pick for sparkling wine lovers is these two – Wild Life Botanicals Nude and Blush.

Alcohol usually takes nutrients out of the body not add to it but that’s what makes Wild Life Botanicals sparkling wines special, it is bubbles with benefits. It’s low in alcohol, has less sugar than champagne and prosecco and is infused with eight vitamins and minerals, as well as five botanicals. It also has 60% less calories.

Clean Liquor Co Clean Gin – nolo drinks

Prefer G&T? You’re in luck because this Clean Liquor Co Clean Gin is the perfect Nolo pick.

Prepared in small copper pot gin stills, it has all of the crisp botanical-driven taste of some of the world’s greatest gin cocktails, but with over 30 times less alcohol. It has no sugar or sweeteners; and no hangover! Grab a bottle here

EVERLEAF – Non-Alcoholic Aperitif – nolo drinks

For mocktails lovers, look no further than this Nolo aperitif created by bartender and conservation biologist Paul Mathew. Brimming with botanicals, it’s crafted sustainably combining cherry picked botanicals from across the globe including voodoo lily, vanilla and saffron. It’s simply delicious.

Low Alcohol Cabernet Sauvignon – Tempranillo – nolo drinks

If you’re a red wine lover, this Spanish red will do the trick. It’s packed with red fruits and currents for a delightful Nolo alternative to wine. It’s available from the Co-op, buy here.

Check out our Christmas gift guide for wine lovers and download our FREE festive recipes book here

Christmas gift guide: Long-lasting Wine Gifts for the wine lover in your life – Christmas gift guide

Shopping for a loved one who loves wine is usually not difficult to do, most of us buy them a few bottles of their favourite wine and that’s that. But this year, let’s think a little out of the box and get your favourite wine lover a gift other than wine, or something useful that’s not the same old thing.

Let your wine gift this year be more than a few bottles of wine that’ll be enjoyed over Christmas but rather thoughtful, longlasting gifts that’ll keep you in their thoughts through the New Year.

Here are five such gifts:

Wine Holder for Wine Storage – Christmas gifts for wine lovers

Most people may not have enough wine to fill a wine cellar but they usually have a few bottles they are holding on to for special occasions. This wine holder will make an excellent gift, as it gives them a chance to display their collection and they’ll think of you every time they see it. Buy here

Rechargeable Wine Opener Gift Set – Christmas gifts for wine lovers

This gorgeous set is stainless steel and beautifully packaged. Not to mention it’ll last years if looked after properly. You’ll be remembered each time the recipient opens a bottle of wine. Buy here.

Wine lovers box gift subscription – final wine lovers box of 2020

The gift of a couple of bottles of wine will disappear quickly during this festive period but an annual subscription of the Wine Lovers Box will last well beyond that. Your gift will keep giving well into 2021; bringing new and exciting wine from vineyards all across the world, not to mention delicious treats with every delivery. Really, it’s the best kind of gift to give the wine lover in your life.
Gift a box here

Forman & Field Classic Cheese Box – Christmas gifts for wine lovers

This Cheese Box is the perfect Christmas gift for a wine lover! It’s a superb selection of award-winning British cheeses that will pair excellently with wine this Christmas. All cheese come individually wrapped in waxed paper, and presented in a wooden box that’s worth keeping. Buy here.

Wine stain remover – Christmas gifts for wine lovers

This may not be a glamourous gift but it’s a very thoughtful one that the recipient will thank you for over and over again. It makes a great stocking filler!
Accidentally spilling red wine has ruined many things in the home; from sofas and carpets to bed linings and clothing. This gift will be the most used by a wine lover and they’ll thank you every time they reach for it.
Grab a red wine stain remover here.

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You can also download our FREE Christmas Recipes Book here!

6 Wine Pairings to upgrade your pizza – pizza and wine pairing

Whether it’s a Netflix and chill night or a pizza night out; pair these wines with your favourite pizza toppings to bring out the full flavours and delight your palate.


To balance out the strong spice of pepperoni, choose wine with rich, fruity flavours. Its savoury qualities will cut through the pepperoni’s fat and saltiness, providing the perfect moreish match. 

Pair with: Sangiovese or Barbera, Nero d’Avola, Nebbiolo.


If you like your vegetables where you can see them on a pizza, think of wine with gentle notes that’s not going to compete with the ingredients on a vegetarian pizza. 

Pair with: Chardonnay or Sauvignon Blanc, Prosecco, Fiano, Rosé.


Whether it’s a meat lover’s pizza or chicken; go with full-bodied reds with rich fruity flavours that are up to the task and can perfectly match the fattiness of the meat for an undeniable flavour combination.

Pair with: Cabernet Sauvignon or Tempranillo, Shiraz, Malbec. – pizza and wine pairing


The smokiness and sweetness of the barbeque sauce will pair perfectly with the fruitiness of a Pinot Noir. Its light body and fine tannins will work beautifully with the chicken, without overpowering it.

Pair with: Pinot Noir, or Dolcetto, Merlot, Chardonnay, Rosé.


There’s no better pairing than Pinot and mushrooms—they’re all about earth and spice. A little oregano makes the match even better.


Whether it’s a classic Margherita or a pizza with even more cheese, try a dry rosé which is perfect for lighter flavored pizzas, or a light aromatic red like pinot noir which is just acidic enough to cut through the tomato sauce and thin layer of oil from melted cheese

Pair with: rosé and pinot noir

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Health reasons why you should drink red wine every day. - 8 health benefits of drinking red wine

Call us biased but we think you should be drinking red wine every day. But don’t just take our word for it, medical professionals back us on this claim. While alcohol in general, gets a bad rap from doctors, the one drink they seem to endorse, all be it in moderation is red wine. Yes, because it has surprising health benefits and a glass a day will help keep you in tiptop shape.

8 health benefits of drinking red wine.

  • Drinking red wine is known to improve your short term memory. It helps you retain information, thanks to the effects of resveratrol.
  • Not a big fan of eye diseases? Don’t worry, a glass of wine a day will prevent cataract. This is because red wine is rich in antioxidants.
  • No one enjoys a dental plague or a dentist bill so it’s good to know the natural antioxidants in wine reduces bacteria that causes tooth decay and helps prevent annoying and expensive trips to the dentist.
  • Red wine is also good for the heart and prevents heart disease. This is because it helps regulate fat and cholesterol in the body. It decreases bad cholesterol and increases good cholesterol which is good for the heart. Also, certain components of wine block the development of fat cells.
  • Some studies have shown promising results that wine reduces the risk of cancer. It slows down the development of lung cancer and helps prevent certain types of skin cancer.
  • You’ll also be happy to know that a glass a day helps maintain your youth. The antioxidants in red wine help improve the skin’s appearance. In fact, there are a lot of beauty treatments that use the components of wine in their products.
  • An Italian study from 2009 claims a potential relation between the nutriments of red wine and higher sexual activity. Think of it as an aphrodisiac and get your freak on.
  • One benefit of red wine we’re sure you don’t need a doctor to tell you about is that it helps beat stress. The antioxidants in the wine act as a great stress reliever so go on, sip away.

Just to make the health professionals happy, we must say that the WHO advises not to exceed the daily consumption of two glasses of wine for men and one glass for women.

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8 words that’ll make you a wine expert instantly. - The 8 words that’ll make you a wine expert instantly.

Becoming a wine expert takes time, ask sommeliers, it’s no joke. You have to read, study, and practice wine service as well as identify wines by tasting them blindly.

But if you’ve been drinking wine for years and know you can do all of the above while holding your own against the so-called wine experts with professional training; then all you need are these commonly used wine phrases that’ll instantly have you talking like the wine expert you are.


Legs are the rivulets that run down the side of a wine glass after the wine has been swirled around. The more legs you see, the more full-bodied and alcoholic the wine is.


A tight wine is a wine without much flavour, meaning, it needs to unwind and develop further.


This refers to wine that is kept air-tight during fermentation. The lack of oxygen often creates a sulphurous smell in the wine.


When a wine is oxidized, it means it’s stale and flat due to overexposure to air.


This is the characteristic smell of a matured wine. Bouquet takes a long time to develop, which is why mature wines have complex bouquets.


This is a French term for an entire region and climate where a grape is grown. It also sometimes refers to known flavours of a grape’s region.


This is the naturally occurring compounds found in the skins, stems and pips of grapes. Tannins also act as a natural preservative to help the wine age and develop.


This is the weight and fullness of a wine on your palate. Wine can be light, medium, or full-bodied. Full-bodied wines tend to be high in alcohol.

So there you have it, you probably knew all these characteristics of wine but wasn’t describing them with these terms; simply arm yourself with these words when talking about wine and voila, you’re a wine expert in the eyes of the ‘professionals.’

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