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    How I save for Disney World

    Disney World. The most magical place on earth; also one of the most expensive places on earth! Over the years I’ve learnt that Disney magic definitely comes at a price! My trip this year will be my 9th visit to Disney World. Of course, many of the trips I didn’t pay for as I was a child. However the last few I have paid for so I thought I would share my tips on how I save money to pay for Disney World.

    Have two savings accounts 

    Having two savings accounts makes it easier to distinguish what money can be used for holidays. I have one savings account that I transfer a certain amount of money to each month. This is used for general life things such as car MOT’s and buying a new hoover when one breaks. The second savings account I use as a holiday fund. Each month I’ll try and transfer some money into this account. Knowing that the account is to pay for holidays stops me from dipping into it to pay for other things.

    Get a money savings jar 

    Money saving jars that you can’t get into unless you smash it open are an amazing way to save money. Myself and Shaun have a cute Disney themed one that we put any 50p coins and £2.00 coins in. We don’t smash it open until its full and then we use the money for spending money for our holiday. Last time we smashed one open it had about £600 inside. It’s amazing how it adds up!

    Don’t make unnecessary purchases 

    A prime example of this is buying lunch at work. I NEVER buy lunch at work. Each night I make myself a packed lunch and have that as it’s much cheaper than constantly buying. An average meal deal usually costs around £3.50. If you buy that five times a week that’s £17.50 and over a month that comes to £70.00! Over a 12 month period that’s £840 that you could put towards a Disney holiday. Think before you buy!

    Use loyalty cards 

    Places such as Tesco and Sainsbury’s have points cards that you can build up points and use it to pay towards your food shopping. These points can build up pretty quickly if you’re always shopping in the same place. You’ll eventually get to the point where you have enough points to pay for half or all of your food shop for the week. The money that you save from paying for your shop via points can then be put into a savings account to go towards your holiday.

    Do you have any tips on saving to go to Disney World? If you do then leave them in the comments below. 



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    Disney World through the years

    I’m totally in Disney countdown mode now. I’m spending all of my free time watching Disney vlogs and getting myself hyped up for my trip in May. This will be my 9th visit to Disney World. My first trip was in October 2001 when I was 9 years old with my latest trip being July 2017. I recently started clearing out my laptop to free up some space and came across so many Disney Photographs. I thought I would make today’s post a light-hearted and fun one and take a trip down memory lane. So sit back and enjoy!

    I feel so blessed that I’ve been to my favourite place in the world with my parents and brother, both sets of grandparents, my best friend and my boyfriend. I’ve created the most amazing memories over the years and I’m excited to go and back in May and create even more memories!

    Hope you enjoyed!

    Charlotte xx

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    5 tips to get organised for Christmas early

    As I write this it’s just 59 sleeps until Christmas which is crazy! I’m not sure where the year has gone but suddenly Christmas is creeping up on us. I always like to be organised for Christmas. I hate leaving things to the last minute as it gets stressful. Here are my 5 tips for getting organised quickly to make sure your Christmas is fun and enjoyable and most importantly stress-free!

    Get your Christmas crafts done early 

    I make my own Christmas cards and I’ve been working on them since September. I know roughly how many I need to make and make sure I plan accordingly to get them all done in time. Above is one of my latest designs that I’ve made and I love how it’s turned out. It was super easy to make, I created a watercolour background and then used stamps and white embossing powder for the pictures. Simple but super cute!

    Avoid the crowds and shop early 

    Don’t get caught up in the chaotic Christmas crowds. Start your shopping early. If you see something in October that you think would be a good present for someone then pick it up. Another great way to avoid the crowds is to shop online and this is a fab way to support small businesses.

    Think about food 

    I’m going to my mums for Christmas lunch this year so I don’t need to worry about that. However, I have all of my family coming over on Boxing Day and I’m going to do a buffet. I’ve already written the list of what food I’m going to do and I’ve started running the freezer down so that I can fit everything in. There’s nothing worse than doing a big Christmas food shop and not being able to fit it in the fridge/ freezer.

    Don’t leave time-consuming tasks until the last minute

    Wrapping presents and writing cards … It can take forever! Don’t leave it all until the last minute. You could either wrap as you buy or spread it over a few weekends leading up to Christmas so that you aren’t trying to wrap everything on Christmas Eve. I often find wrapping presents quite boring so I like to spread it out and not do everything at once.

    Book things early 

    Christmas is a busy time of year and it’s important to book thigs in early. If you want to go out with all of your friends for a Christmas meal then you need to book it now! We’ve had a Christmas meal out booked since September for December 21st as everything books up so quickly. People also get booked up over Christmas so if you want to see friends and family then plan it as early as you can to fit everything in.

    Hope you all found this helpful and enjoy planning your Christmas!

    Charlotte xx

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    Autumn update

    Somehow we find ourselves in October? I’ll be perfectly honest, I have no idea what happened to the last 9 month?! Time is literally flying by. This year has been a pretty crazy year for me. Having bought and renovated a house, started a new job and booked a holiday to Disney World for next year it’s definitely been a rollercoaster. But I wouldn’t change a thing. I thought that now would be the perfect time to do a little update on things and catch up with you all.

    My new job 

    Well, I guess it’s not really that new anymore. But I started my new role back in May and it’s honestly changed my life. I’ve gone from someone who used to dread going to work every day and always come home crying to someone who doesn’t mind going to work at all. I’m not saying I love my job because it’s kind of boring but it’s way better than my old one.

    My blog 

    I’ve still been regularly posting on my blog but I feel like I’ve been a bit absent on social media recently. I’ve actually not been that well. To cut a long story short my doctor has just put me back on medication that I used to take so I’m hoping to start feeling a lot better soon! I can’t wait to spend my evenings chatting to you guys on social media again and putting more time back into my blog once I’m feeling better. Also, I’ve completely redesigned my blog and I’m so happy with how it looks! The Graphic Designer in me felt like it was time for a change. (I have a degree in Graphic Design if you were wondering haha).

    The rest of the year 

    I love this time of year and I’m so excited for the next few months. Bonfire night has been one of my favourite nights for as long as I can remember so I’m really looking forward to that. And I’m really sorry to use the C word this early … But I’m very excited for Christmas! I love the build-up to Christmas, buying gifts, going to Christmas markets and decorating the tree. I’m also really enjoying the colder nights and snuggling on the sofa with my hot water bottle and a good film.

    Things I’ve been loving recently 

    Baking is something I haven’t done properly for ages but I’ve been really enjoying it over the last few weeks. I made an amazing Marble Cake; you can check out the recipe here. I’ve been loving watching girly chick flicks on Netflix. I really enjoyed To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before and Sierra Burgess Is A Loser. I’m also still making lots of Christmas cards and really enjoying doing that.

    I hope you all have a wonderful Autumn – do you have much planned?

    Charlotte xx

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    Delicious Marble Cake recipe

    A few days ago I posted a photograph on Twitter of a very delicious Marble Cake that I had made. I then received a load of comments asking for the recipe so I thought I would share it with you today.

    Ingredients for the sponge: 
    • 225g unsalted butter
    • 225g caster sugar
    • 4 eggs
    • 225g self-raising flour
    • 3 tablespoons cocoa powder
    • 2 tablespoons milk
    Ingredients for the topping: 
    • 100g dark chocolate
    • 50g white chocolate
    • 40g unsalted butter
    Method for the sponge: 
    1. Preheat the oven to gas mark 4 / 180c (160c for a fan assisted oven)
    2. Line the base of a loaf tin with greaseproof paper. (The loaf tin I used was roughly 26x12x7)
    3. In a large bowl cream together the 225g unsalted butter with 225g caster sugar. I used an electric whisk for this and also made sure I had taken the butter out of the fridge to soften before using it.
    4. Add the eggs 1 at a time and beat into the mixture after you’ve added each one. The mixture should then be light and fluffy.
    5. Sift the self-raising flour into the mixture and mix together. I always do this in stages by putting in half the flour and mixing and then the other half. This helps prevent a flour explosion!
    6. Now that your sponge mixture is complete you need to take half of it and move it into another dish and leave it to one side. With the remaining half of the sponge mixture; add in the cocoa powder and milk and mix together. This will create the chocolate half of the sponge for creating the marble effect.
    7. Using 2 spoons, put alternate spoonfuls of the two mixtures that you have created into the baking tin. Once this is complete take the handle of a spoon and gently swirl the two mixtures together to create a swirled effect.
    8. Pop the cake into the oven to bake. Mine took around 60 minutes but make sure you check it’s fully cooked. I always do this by sticking a knife through the centre of the cake; if it comes out clean then it’s cooked. If it’s not then it needs a little longer.
    9. Leave the cake to cool.
    Method for the topping: 
    1. Melt 100g of dark chocolate in the microwave; it’ll take roughly 1 minute. Make sure to keep stirring the chocolate throughout the 1 minute to prevent it from burning.
    2. Once the chocolate is melted; add 20g of unsalted butter to the chocolate and mix together. Make sure the butter is softened and at room temperature. Once this is mixed together it’ll thicken the chocolate up to spread over the top of the cake.
    3. Now do the same with the white chocolate – melt, add the 20g of butter and mix.
    4. spread the dark chocolate over the cake and then using a teaspoon; drizzle the white chocolate over the top.
    5. Use the handle of a spoon to swirl the chocolate together.

    Hope you enjoyed this recipe; happy baking!

    Charlotte xx