Semi permanent make up

Semi permanent make up

Since I was at primary school I have had a hang -up about my eyes. As a natural red head I have been blessed (or cursed) with very fair eyelashes and eyebrows. I was always so jealous of other girls who had beautiful dark, luscious eyelashes and brows. When I was about 13 I was on holiday in Wales with my family. My mum got chatting to the beautician in the hotel we are staying at. She suggested eyelash and eyebrows tinting…… OMG!!
That is when my love for beauty therapy, make-up and cosmetics started. If you are a working lady or a full time mum you will appreciate the lack of time we have to faff about every morning getting our eyebrows looking sharp. Tinting is great but if you have to use a beautician it can be time consuming and costly long term. I had been thinking about eyebrow tattooing for a while. I have a big holiday coming up this year which motivated me to just go for it!! I did a huge amount of research into semi permanent make up and who could do it.  I finally came across Luci Bruce in West Wickham. She came highly recommended and her previous clients looked amazing and even better…. She was local! I booked! On meeting Luci I knew I had made the right decision. She took time finding out exactly what I liked and what I didn’t. I showed her pictures of how I do my eyebrows and explsined i wanted a ‘natural look ‘ so that I had the option to darken them if I was going or for the night.
After an hour or so of drawing the shape, making sure everything was just right, she got to work. I had expected some sort of pain. I had a tattoo when I was 18 and I thought I was being murdered!! It honestly did not hurt at all. A slight scratching sensation to start with, then, nothing! It was almost relaxing! The results are amazing! I am over the moon!
At £350 it is not a cheap procedure. Bit in my opinion worth every penny! That also includes a top-up 6 weeks later. This is my miricle worker, but if you decide to use someone else please do your research. I have heard a lot of horror stories! I may even get my lips done next 😜 

Only one place to buy lingerie and swimwear

Only one place to buy lingerie and swimwear

I remember 14 years ago,  sitting at my mother in laws kitchen table sorting through bras and knickers with her ready for the next days work. Chris (my MIL)  and Sue, her friend and business partner would load all their merchandise of bras and knickers into the back of the van and travel to various hospitals to sell lingerie off their stall. They had discussed opening a shop for quite a while before they found the right premises. After months of looking they finally found the perfect spot. D’braz, Banstead has been open thirteen years this year. Over that time Chris and Sue have built a wonderful business based on a gleaming reputation. The awards the ladies have been given are to long to list but they are extremely highly regarded within the industry. An intimate lingerie shop where you can get measured and know you will leave with a bra that fits perfectly and looks beautiful. The stock they have is stunning,  they stock brands from Freya, Mary Jo, Aubade, After Eden. Primadona, lejaby and Mareyan Melhorn and Gottex swimwear plus many more top brands. Stocking bra sizes from A to K, they also specialise in Mastectomy and maternity bras. After the success of their Banstead store they opened Cobham in 2009. Apart from the simply beautiful lingerie and nightwear, the swimwear they stock is like no collection I have ever seen. They have something for every shape.   Long bodies,  tankinies, high leg, shorts. Underwired and cup sized. The cover ups, kaftans, skirts, shorts and dresses to wear with the swimwear is equally as gorgeous. Christine always tells me that it is quite amazing how many women are wearing the wrong size bra. Not only is this bad for you. It will not be doing anything for your figure. If you are due a measure, a new set or are off on holidays get yourself down to Banstead or Cobham. The girls are really welcoming and knowledgeable. A little tip for you ladies to…. The men’s Waxx pants D’braz sell are a real hit. Every man I know that has had a pair now wears nothing else. They make great pressies for the other half 😉

Maybelline Nail Varnish

Maybelline Nail Varnish

I have been on the search for a metallic rose gold nailvarnish. (This is the colour i was after) Im not sure i have found exactly what i was looking for, but it comes very close. MAYBELLINE SUPER STAY 7 DAYS, GEL NAIL COLOUR, METALLIC SILKS in Rose Veil £4.50 I love the brush and the texture of the varnish.  It leaves a lovely finish and is easy to put on neatly. It dried within five minutes and looks great! It is a lovely rose gold colour and looks fun aswell as classy. Can anyone recommend any other nail varnishes for the summer? Kate x

Tanorganic Self Tan

Tanorganic Self Tan

I have tried so many different tanning products but I think I’ve hit the jackpot! After a three week holiday in Florida I came back hardly any darker than when I left. Being a natural redhead I have fair skin and although I do eventual get a little colour it takes ages. Since my mum had a melanoma removed a few years ago I am super paranoid about slapping on sun cream. Also, my tutor at beauty college drilled into us how much damage the sun can do to your skin and how quickly it ages you. For these reasons, even when I am in the sun I wear a higher factor. The problem is, like everyone, I feel so much better when I have a bit of colour. I do love a spray tan but I prefer home products so that I can keep my tan looking consistent. The only problem is home tans can be really difficult to apply without looking awful. I trained with Fake Bake for my spray tanning and so far their products have been my favourite, but this beats them hands down. On the plane on the way back from Florida I saw a product advertised in The Duty Free mag. I asked the stewardess about it and she said she uses it and swears by it so I thought I’d take a punt. Tanorganic Self Tan oil It is a dry oil so it massages straight into your skin and doesnt leave your skin feeling greasy or sticky. It’s completly organic made with some of my favourite oils such as Annatto, Argan, Beetroot extract, chamomile, coconut and Aloe Vera aswell s many more. It also contains no parabens and is great for your skin. I applied it two days ago and I am so pleased with the results. It is easy to rub in and It leaves a beautiful, natural looking tan. Everyone that I have seen has assumed it is my holiday tan (secrets of of the bag now 😛) It has left my skin feeling great and it doesn’t have that fake tan smell. It is sold on Amazon or in Holland and Barrett and costs £24.99. Although, if you are jetting abroad keep an eye out at Duty Free as I paid £20. To read more about Tanorganic click the link below Being a fairly new Blogger and really excited about my new product I didn’t think to take a before picture before I slapped it on. I am going to do a review on a few different tans over the next couple weeks and will include before and after pictures in that, including Tanorganic.



So I’ve already explained my love for any treatments that enhance your eyes. The latest treatment i have discovered are Lvl lashes. I have had eyelash extensions and they really aren’t for me. I don’t have the time or patience to maintain them so I end up looking like I have mangled spider legs growing out of my eyes followed by bald patched where they pull my lashes out. The other downside for me is that to have them on holiday limits your fun in the swimming pool,  constantly feeling like u have to keep your head above water and splash free (totally boring and useless with five kids) Lvl stands for length, volume,  lift. A setting serum is used to straighten your natural lashes at the root (making them look curled up), and then your lashes are tinted, creating the appearance of mascara. The results last for 6-8 weeks and if you re tint after 4 weeks it will re-vamp them as though you have just had them done. I had mine done by Claire in Caterham The treatment took approx 40 minutes and I am absolutely thrilled with the results especially with a holiday coming up. My eyelashes contstantly look like they have mascara on. The treatment usually costs approx £75 which includes the tint. Claire (mentioned above) is offering a very generous discount for anyone who mentions Modernmum blog. I can not recommend this treatment enough,  something else to make life easier!

Quick Breakie Salad

Quick Breakie Salad

Time : under 10 minutes 3 slices of smoked bacon 3 eggs I red chilli (optional) Cherry tomatoes Spring onion 1) Remove all the fat from the bacon and grill it. 2) ‎Scramble the eggs (no milk or butter) I find making it in the microwave the easiest. 3) ‎Cut the chilli, cherry tomatoes and spring onion. 4) ‎Cut the cooked bacon into slices and mix all the ingredients together. Season with salt and pepper 0 syns on Slimming World When I make this breakfast I have to make double because the kids absolutly love it! If you give this a go, let me know what you think. Sharing is caring….we all need a bit of inspiration when it comes to quick meals so please share on your social media Love K Xxx Modern Mum

The Alternative Christmas Dinner

The Alternative Christmas Dinner

Every year I say I will buy a few Turkeys to rear on the farm for Christmas dinner and every October I realise I have left it too late!

So then, every October /November I spend loads of time researching the best place to buy one. Marks and Spencers? Sainsburys? The local butcher or farm shop? Then I spend my monthly mortgage payment on a premium, amazing bird to feed my fifteen guests.

Now, here is the crazy bit….every year we all have the same conversation just after Christmas… ‘I am not a lover of Turkey’ ‘It is a very dry meat’ ‘It’s tradition though..’ ‘I prefer chicken all day long’

In fact, the only thing that Turkey offers our house at Christmas, which we can not sacrifice is Turkey sandwiches in the evening (which a medium crown will suffice). I have made an executive decision and will NOT be cooking a turkey for our Christmas dinner.

We have taken a few animals to slaughter over the last few weeks so we have a freezer full of beef, lamb and pork. The cuts of meat we have would be worth a fortune if we had to buy them at a butchers.   So this year I am going to cook a Beef Wellington and a leg of lamb for our lunch.

This got me thinking about alternative Christmas Dinners and what other things families serve up for their grub.

I asked a few fellow bloggers and it seems quite a few people are not too fussed on our traditional Turkey. Here are some suggestions for something different.


‘We go for Ham. There is no waste and we actually enjoy it. Noone in our family really likes turkey so always a bit of a waste!’


‘We don’t eat meat so last year I made salmon. I wasn’t too fussed about it and this year we’re just having everything but the meat!’


‘We are having the Lamb stack from Lidl, as none of us are too fond of Turkey. I will be making stuffed butternut squash for the vegetarian quest and getting a small Turkey crown for my Grandparents, as that would be dangerous grounds if I didn’t !’


‘We’re vegetarian and my Mum has always made a mushroom strudel and we’ve carried on the tradition! With all the usual trimmings of course.’


‘I find turkey quite bland so we usually have lamb or salmon.’


‘A lovely plump goose and all that tasty skin 😍😍 ‘


‘We are eating out at a restaurant this year so my parents have chosen to have a Chateaubriand. As they said by the time Christmas comes your normally board of turkey ! ‘


‘We are vegetarian so we normally have a mushroom wellington or nut roast 😊’


‘My partner doesn’t enjoy Turkey so always has a lamb shank for his Christmas dinner. ‘


‘Nut roast – as I’m vegetarian Husband isn’t but it became now our family tradition at Christmas.’


‘My stepdad is Indian, one year we had a curry!’


‘Quorn family roast and spinach and feta tart is what my family had growing up! ‘


‘Hubby and kids will have chicken breasts (hubby’s choice), but I’m veggie so I’ll just have extra stuffing or a nut roast.  We never cook a turkey here! ‘


‘If we was in charge of Christmas dinner I imagine I would cook chicken, I can’t stand turkey but everyone seems to enjoy a nice roast chicken! ‘


‘A lot of our family don’t like traditional roasts, so our tradition is to have a big Irish cooked breakfast on Xmas morning, then party food and snacky bits during the day as everyone pops in and out, then in the evening, a couple of different joints of meat in warm rolls – yum!’


‘We’re not really into turkey so we always have our fave roast dinner meat – a chicken! We also get a big ham or beef joint too. 😊’


‘We do normally have turkey but on a couple of occasions we have gone for a rib of beef instead. One of our guests this year hates turkey so I think I will cook a rib of beef again.’


‘We have a ham every year as hardly any of us like turkey. This year there are lots of us so there will be a goose too ‘


‘One year I did – IKEA meatballs, sticky chipolatas, fries, loganberry jam, sautéed red cabbage and Daim bar cake – all from the IKEA food shop for less than £20  – it was everyones favourite Christmas! 🙂 ‘


‘If I make a Christmas dinner it has to be apple-stuffed duck roast! I find turkey too bland and lean and if I’m going to go all-out, I might as well make it a cardiac arrest on a plate’


‘My husband hates turkey he thinks it’s too bland so we compromise with a 3 bird roast normally. We had goose one year and it was so fatty and a pain in the bum to cook we just stick to a 3 bird.  I’m not telling him your having beef Wellington though that would be his preference!!’ 


‘For a few years, we did a Mexican Xmas Day.  Sombreros, Mexican decorations, games and Mexican food/Drink obv. Easier to get food from the supermarket in the rush and loads of fun! ‘


‘We have had steak, chips & peppercorn sauce for the past 5 years and love it! So chilled out and no peeling veg! ‘


‘I’m a vegetarian, so we don’t have turkey 😉 I make a savoury crumble instead, with loads of veg and cheesy crumble topping, and serve it with roast potatoes. Even my meat eating husband enjoys it!’


‘We always do something different. We are half south African and it sounds crazy but last year was brilliant, the lads went out to do the meat – a side of beef stuffed and rolled in foil on the fire (BBQ or braai as we’d call it) in the middle of a UK winter. They loved it and the kids too especially afterwards when we turned it in to bonfire. We added roasted vegetables and potatoes dauphinois to the meal which we’d done in the oven. All in all very little fuss and plenty of fun. ‘


‘We will be having chicken or lamb. I haven’t had a turkey Christmas dinner for about 20 years. I don’t really like turkey and I definitely don’t trust myself to cook it well. I know it would end up like the one in National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation’


‘One year we decided to have Christmas dinner out and I had roast pigeon! It was actually amazing and a welcomed change!’


‘We often have beef and I have a friend who lets everyone choose and so the kids pick fish fingers!’


‘We have a buffet with lots of elements from Spanish cuisine to reflect the Other Half’s heritage. ‘


‘Goose, pheasant, duck we’ve had them all as my family have never been huge turkey fans’


‘My cousin does turkey pasta because none of her family like a turkey roast. Sounds grim but she roasts the turkey, takes the meat off & turns it into a delicious pasta bake!’


‘We’re doing a joint of beef this year.i will miss the turkey sandwiches though!’😂


‘This year we are having a three bird game roast – partridge, pheasant and pigeon! You may think eating pigeon is a bit weird but it’s actually a really delicate meat with a lot of flavour.’


‘We tend to alternate, one year might be a rib of beef and a ham, other it will be a turkey. I’m not a huge fan of turkey so it’s a nice change for me. Important as I tend to be the cook!’

Shopping for a large family

Shopping for a large family

I think the key to shopping for a large family is bulk and planning! I tend to split my shopping into various trips. I pay a yearly membership to Costco so that I can buy alot of our shop in bulk. I buy toilet rolls, washing powder, fabric conditionor, cleaning products, nappies and baby wipes. I also buy things like ketchup, seasonings, tea bags, coffee and rice. Costco also have really nice meat, their pork belly in particular and I find it hard to resist their caremilsed onion sausages! On average my shop at Costco comes to £80-£100 and that would last me at least 6 weeks. The problem with costco is that they always have loads of other stuff that I want to buy but shouldn’t.  You know, the sort of stuff that makes Mike sweat when I start browsing,  pillows, candles, coffee machines, throws (you can never have enough throws),  books and home decorations. can guarentee that regardless of how quickly Mike wants to get around and tries to steer me away from anything that is not on my list, if there is a bar b que, tool set or ‘boys toy’ on offer it will add an extra hour to our trip! I find taking a list always helps me stick to what I really need and also means I don’t come away forgetting any essentials. Once I left without nappies and loo roll but instead had two paddling pools and a football goal! Next stop is Aldi where  I stock up on all our cupboard essentials like crisps, biscuits, cereals, squash, tins and pasta etc. I also buy their prosecco, wines,  cheeses and ham. This leaves my regular ‘pop in’ to Co-op or sainsburys for milk,  bread, fruit and veg much less of a burden. I can preach this, but I really need to stick to it myself. As much as I know I should do it and on an organised month I am religious, I also have months where I spend £200 more than I need to because I leave it all to the last minute and run into sainsburys, hungry and with no plan of action! There are also weeks/months where I can get my a#?e to the supermarket which is when sainsburys delivery gets used. Speaking of the continence of delivery, I am really tempted to try one of these fruit and veg delivery services where they deliver you a box once a week….does anyone have this?  What are your thoughts? I have mentioned in previous blogs I tend to cook alot of big pot dishes such as Curries, pasta, shepherds pies, lasagne, chilli, stews, they all work out cheaper than buying ready prepered food for us as a big family.

Recipe for perfect kids

Recipe for perfect kids

​I totally won my kids over today! Today I have been honoured with ‘ the best mum in the world ‘ and ‘absolutly amazing ‘ They have hung all their clean washing up and put it away for me, Cleaned their rooms and fed George. They had a shower without asking them,  and now as i type this we are cuddling on the sofa. The secret?  Well it was so simple I can’t believe it is taken me so long…… OREO COOKIE MILKSHAKE 2 x packs of oreos Half a tub of vanilla ice cream Milk added depending on how thick you like it. (just half that If you don’t have a mini tribe like me!) All wacked in the blender (sorry I didn’t get a chance to take a photo before my angels inhaled two glasses each!) Anyway….. Viola! Happy kids!!! YOUR WELCOME (she takes a bow)

Tulley Farm – Pumpkin and Spookfest

Tulley Farm - Pumpkin and Spookfest

​If you live in the South East and have not heard of Tulleys Farm and their Shocktoberfest you must be living under a rock. I last went three years ago and have heard through the grapevine it has only got better. 

I could not wait to take the kids this half term.

As usual, nothing in our house goes to plan and after getting the household ready, I ran into a small problem on departure….a flat tyre.

But, living on a farm has its perks and we usually have a back up vehicle of some description.

On this occasion it was our trusty Landrover Defender that came to our rescue. So, an hour later than planned, we were on our way. Tulleys Farm is a seasonal family event venue in Sussex, between London and Brighton, close to Crawley and East Grinstead.  So much is put into each event that it never fails to excite throughout each season. Drawing inspiration from the huge halloween industry in America, the Pick Your Own Farm began developing Tulleys Halloween events in around 2002.  It has since grown from visitors of 3,500 to the mega 60,000 it is welcoming now, over the Halloween period .

As a result of its phenomenal success, they have attracted some of the best Scare Experts in the business.

By day they run a fantastic family spooky experience and by night it becomes a terrifying fright fest that, quite franky, my bladder can no longer handle!

Last time I visited at night I spent most of the evening with my face burried in Mikes back!

For a fiesty lad #georgethemenace (my two year old) is scared of everything…  Spiders, clowns, masks, people dressed up and anything small that  moves.

As much as I enjoy the cuddles his terror brings, I knew this year it was best to leave him behind.

Also, as much as Tulleys has catered well for buggies, as us parents know, mud and prams make hard work.

Luckily my mum and dad were around and agreed to watch the two smaller boys for me.

Tulleys Farm is made up of a few different rides/experiences.

My kids favourite everytime we visit is the Horrid Hayride.

This is a tractor ride through a creepy woods where the aim of the game is to make the kids scream (and laugh). 

I’m going to be careful not to give to much away because the element of suprise and unknown is half the fun.

I will say, unlike the evening experience, the actors are much tamer during the day so that it doesnt traumatise the children……too much 😜

During the day we visited all the main attractions.

We visitied Dirty Gerty and The Witches in The Woods.

We tried to find all the ghosts in the Cornmaze.  Which, FYI, is a perfect opportunity to loose the kids for half an hour.

The Twisted Fun House, which even tripped me out slightly when I realised six little faces were relying on me to escape.

The more I tried to find the exit, the more we were faced with psychedelic clowns!

The Creepy Cottage was the ride that my older children found the scariest. Negotiating your way around a derelict cottage scattered with terrifying props

Inbetween all the rides are food stalls serving donuts, jacket potatoes, burgers, chicken, hogroasts and coffee….plenty of coffee everywhere!

The Pumkin Patch is really something to behold and you can buy them aswell as other great Halloween merchandise at the Farm Store.

As you walk around Tulleys there is plenty more entertainment scattered around. Spooky theatre, street theatre, puppet shows and a pertrifying play area, there is so much to do we nearly ran out of time! There really is nothing like this around.  It is such a brilliant concept and the planning that goes into it and the volume of visitors speaks for itself.

There are a few days left…….take a visit.   Tulleys Farm is a seasonal attraction and I am definatly visiting at Christmas. 

Tulleys Farm have also introduced an attraction called Escape Rooms. I’ve been checking it out online and it seems a team of you are locked in a room and the only way to escape is by solving a series of puzzles.  I can’t wait to give that a go

I would love to hear your opinions if you have visited.

For more information on prices and opening times, take a look at


Tulleys Farm gave me entrance tickets in return for this review. However, all my opinions are entirely honest and without influence.