lifestyle

Tips For Travelling Solo

Solo travel is on the rise. More people are now opting to travel alone and women are actually more likely to travel alone than men. Last week, I took my first solo trip to France. As nervous as I was, I pushed all my doubts to one side and ended having an amazing trip.

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My main reason for wanting to travel solo was because I felt like it was time for me to step out of my comfort zone. I’ve always travelled with friends and I do tend to rely on them a little so I knew it was time to put my desire for travel to the test and step out alone. If you missed my post about my solo trip to Paris, you can check it out here.

Travelling alone isn’t for the faint hearted but if you, like me, enjoy your own company then it should be a pleasant experience. I’m going to share some tips that I think you may all find helpful:

Be confident

Confidence is everything, especially when you step out on your own. You don’t want to give off an obvious tourist vibe as it may attract some unwanted attention. I was quite lucky to have familiarised myself with France’s travel system quickly so even when I did lose my way a little, I was back on track in no time.

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Familiarise yourself with routes/surroundings

Look for things that will help you remember where you are, especially if your navigation skills aren’t great (like mine). Remember that monument or take note of how long it took you to walk down that hilly road. It’s the little things like this that will hopefully stop you from getting lost.

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Plan ahead

Try to create an itenary a few days before you travel. Think about what you want to do, where you would like to go and how long it will take you to get from one place to another.

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Be aware

When I was in Paris, I went to The Louvre. As I left the museum, a man began to follow me. He stopped me and insisted on buying me food and then proceeded to follow me as I walked around. I felt so uncomfortable and was able to run into a nearby shop and stay there for a while. The sales assistant did tell me that men regularly approach women in the area surrounding the museum. Thankfully, this individual stopped following me and I was able to get on with my day.

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Prioritise

Once you have landed in your destination, try to sort out your travel for the duration of your stay first. It sounds obvious but you’d be surprised how many people go on holiday and don’t do this.

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Start your day early

When travelling alone, try not to be out too late. Wherever you go, try to be back at your hotel or where you are staying before it gets dark.

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Take lots of pictures

Don’t forget to capture memories. I love to take lots of pictures whenever I’m away. It’s always nice to have something to refer to when you are reminiscing.

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Get insurance

Of course this applies for when you are travelling with someone but in the excitement of planning, it can be very easy to forget insurance.

I hope you’ve found these tips helpful. Do feel free to leave a comment and let me know if you’d like to see more travel content on the blog.

Kel xo

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lifestyle

Travel Tales – Paris

Last week, I went on my first solo trip to Paris. So many things (positive and negative) went through my mind the night before and the morning of my first ever solo adventure. In this post, I’m going to be sharing my experiences with you all. I do also want to share some tips with you as a first time solo traveller, which I will do in a later post.

I had been planning to make another trip to France (I’ve been twice already) for a few months and early last month, I just thought to myself ‘What the hell, stop procrastinating and book that trip!’. So I booked a hotel first and then I decided to use the Eurostar Snap service to book my tickets (£118 return is pretty impressive!) so if you plan on taking Eurostar anytime soon, you might want to check that out.

On the train, I was so nervous. I had never travelled alone before but when I arrived at Gare Du Nord and went to the information desk, asking how I could get to my hotel, I suddenly felt this surge of confidence in me and I knew that I would be just fine. I bought a 3 day travel pass and made my way to my hotel. I stayed in Saint Cloud which is a beautiful commune about 30 – 40 minutes away from all the city’s main attractions. As I was a little far from Paris, I knew I had to shake my tiredness off immediately and go and explore the beautiful city.

I visited a variety of attractions during my stay including Champs-Elysees (yes, my bank account is still crying), Arc De Triomphe, the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre, Sacre Coeur and Notre Dame.

I also ate at some pretty amazing places. I just love eating in other countries – even though I don’t experiment with food. Travelling alone was so empowering because you are in charge of your own experiences – you aren’t making decisions with anyone so you feel a lot more independent than if you were travelling with friends.

One place I really enjoyed visiting was The Louvre. I bought my tickets in advance because my cousin told me it does get busy during the summer months. I was impressed by  all the beautiful artwork. I found that once I looked at one exhibition, I wanted to see the others straight away. For me, as an art and museum lover, I was in heaven. The Ancient Egypt collection was my personal favourite. I do wish I had gotten the chance to Mona Lisa and also got a chance to go on the Beyonce and Jay-Z inspired tour.

Overall, I really enjoyed my first solo trip. It was great to see places I’d never seen before and just enjoy my own company. I think that everyone should travel solo at least once in their lifetime.

Have you ever travelled alone? What was your experience like? or are you thinking about taking your first solo trip? I love to hear from you all so please feel free to leave a comment.

Kel xo

bodycare · lifestyle

Kiss My Parcel Hospital Care Package

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The Kiss My Parcel Hospital-Healing Care Package is an ideal gift for a loved one who is facing a long stay in hospital for treatment or recovery. This carefully crafted gift parcel is designed to ensure that those dealing with a spell in hospital can make the most of their time, and can help them to feel well supported and cared about.

The box comes crammed with gifts that can be found nestled between layers of shredded recycled paper, making each new discover hidden within a pleasant surprise for your loved one. The box is guaranteed to bring a smile to the face of your recipient and the gift can help make their stay in hospital a lot more bearable.

We really liked the fact that there is a nice mixture of very useful gifts that can not only treat and pamper the patient, but also gives them plenty of things to do to pass the time and prevent them from becoming bored with having too much idle time on their hands. We especially liked the inclusion of the Colour Me Mindful Adult Colouring Book and gel pens, as well as the book ‘1,339 QI Facts to Make Your Jaw Drop’ by John Lloyd, that will really make them laugh out loud – much better than staring at the TV screen all day!

A really thoughtful touch was finding a Macks black-out quick patient recovery contorted eye mask within the box. Sometimes a hospital stay can involve being on a busy ward that never gets very dark. This eye mask can help your loved one get the rest they need to recover and get back on their feet once again.

Here is what you will find hidden within the hospital-healing care parcel:

·         Colour Me Mindful Adult Colouring Book

·         Gel Pens

·         Teapigs Chamomile Tea Temples

·         The Raw Chocolate Company Chocolate Ginger

·         The Raw Chocolate Company Vanoffe Chocolate Bar

·         Skull Candy In Ear Earphones

·         Take A Break’s Mini Puzzle Mix Collection

·         Simpkins Tinned Mixed Fruit Travel Sweets

·         Macks Quick Patient Recover Sleep Mask (with free Ear Plugs)

·         1,339 QI Facts To Make Your Jaw Drop Book By John Lloyd

·         101 Things To Do Instead Of Playing On Your Phone Book By Ilka Heinemann

·         Thumbs Up Lazy Bracket Clip Universal Phone Holder

·         Kiss My Parcel Pen.

You can purchase the Hospital-Healing Care Package by clicking here.

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lifestyle

Box Fit With INTENCITY At Fusion Lifestyle

I’ve always wanted to do a Box Fit class because I’ve heard really good things about what boxing can do for the body. So when Fusion Lifestyle invited me to try out their Box Fit class as part of their brand new fitness experience, INTENCITY. I just couldn’t say no.

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INTENCITY has been launched for those who would like to take their fitness to the next level. The initiative comprises of 30 brand new classes where all attendees are expected to push themselves while exceeding their fitness expectations. While working out intensively, you will be able to track your own results, which is very motivating.

On arrival, I was greeted by a member of staff and I was directed to the basement, which is where the class took place. The studio resembles the kind of fitness studios where celebs and influencers show off their latest workout routines online. The trainer doing the class welcomed me and gave me a minute or two to watch what was happening, which I really appreciated.

Once I was happy that I’d be able to do the exercises, I joined in. At first, I did struggle with power levels. In order to get the most out of boxing, you really do need to think of something that unsettles or upsets you (it’s true). After a few reps, I completely got the hang of things and I really enjoyed myself. In addition to working out with a partner, I was also given some alone time with the punching bags. This helped me improve my coordination. As I type this post, my arms are killing me and I know they are going to hurt even more tomorrow, so that’s proof that I had a very effective workout.

To celebrate this exciting new launch, I’m going to be giving It’s Kelle’s Space readers the opportunity to book a free INTENCITY session of their choice.

All you need to do is click this link here.

Have you ever done a boxing class? What was your experience like? Don’t hesitate to drop a comment below as I love to hear from you.

Kel xo

lifestyle

Celebrating Inspirational Women In Film

To celebrate the launch of the Oled TV from Panasonic, I am going to be telling you all about women in film that inspire me. Role models don’t always have to be real. I think we have all been enamoured with a character from a movie or TV show, feeling like we could totally relate to them and what was happening to them in a particular way.

Here are some women in film who are an inspiration to me:

Matilda

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Matilda will always inspire me. She was everything that I wanted to be when I was a little girl. Those powers, her intelligence and her ability to read every single book in the library…Matilda was #Goals. I remember being so obsessed with the movie (because I was a huge Roald Dahl fan as a child) that I would watch it every single weekend (I begged my Mum to buy me the video cassette) and even to this day, I can remember the lines from some of the most iconic scenes in the movie (particularly when Matilda uses her powers to send Ms Trunchbull packing towards the end). Matilda was bright, brave and most importantly, she believed in her own potential. We can all afford to be a little more like her in my opinion.

Storm 

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Now, I don’t know if it’s because she was portrayed by the ever so beautiful Halle Berry, but I am completely taken by Storm. Whenever I watch a X-Men movie, I am captivated by her strength, her confidence and her bravery. The fact that she can control and manipulate the weather is also a huge plus (we need the Storm effect in London for sure). I also have immense appreciation for the fact that Storm (real name Ororo Munroe) actually made her debut in the X-Men comics in 1975. This was a time where racism was at its peak in America, so just imagine young black American girls (and black girls all over the world of course) seeing someone that looks exactly like them on T.V. Representation matters.

Fran Fine

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Now, I know that Fran Fine isn’t a character from a movie but she is, in my opinion, one of the most iconic female characters in a comedy series. Played by Fran Drescher in hit sitcom The Nanny, Fran Fine had it all. She was classy, beautiful, confident and she owned that strong New York accent like there was no tomorrow. In addition to being absolutely hilarious, Fran taught us all that we should always fight for what we believe in. Although many may not agree with her wait for Mr Sheffield, she always believed that they were meant to be together. I also admire her unquestionable devotion and commitment to Brighton, Maggie and Grace as their nanny. Yes, she did have a few mishaps but she was always able to save the day.

I hope you have all enjoyed this short but sweet post. Are there any women in film (or even T.V) that inspire you? I love to hear from you so please feel free to drop a comment below.

The Oled TV from Panasonic is out now.

Kel xo

 

lifestyle

Vinoos Wine Gums Review

I’m back with another product review. Today, I’ll be sharing my thoughts on the range of REAL wine gums from a Dutch brand called Vinoos, which are sold on the Beyond Living website. Who said sweets were only for children? The Real Wine Gums provide a whole new experience of that first sip, but without drinking. So if you are a wine lover, this review is definitely for you.

The lovely team at Beyond Living sent me three different wine gums: Flavours of Riesling (which was my personal favourite), Flavours of Rose Wine and Flavours of Merlot/Chardonnay (which was in one box). Before I start, I’d just like to mention that these wine gums have 0% alcohol and are best enjoyed when you are socialising/drinking.

Flavours of Riesling has a glorious taste. It captures the notes of dried chamomile, green apple, honey, mint and rose water. They are perfect if you want to indulge or have a craving for something sweet. Each sweet has a beautifully intricate design, which bares a slight resemblance to a bunch of grapes. If you want the taste of the floral Riesling wine but without the alcohol then you will enjoy this. There are no artificial flavours so not having to worry about any additives is a huge plus. The medium sized mint box make these sweets a marvellous gift for a loved one.

I prefer white wine over red so I was a bit sceptical of the Flavours of Rose Wine sweets. They tasted amazing although, it did take me little longer to chew them as they weren’t as soft as the Riesling sweets. With gums, they do tend to have different textures so this wasn’t a cause for concern. These sweets come in a beautiful pink miniature sized box. The packaging is simple, yet elegant.

Flavours of Merlot/Chardonnay, like the Rose wine sweets, also come in a mini box. The packaging is elegant and definitely reflects the luxury of the brand. It was refreshing to be able to taste two different wine gums at once. They are perfect if you are trying your best to eat clean but need a bit of a pick me up during the day.

Overall, I really like the wine gums. I like that they have been specifically made for people who want to live healthier lives without being consistently dependent on alcohol. They are perfect for vegans and vegetarians. Considering the fact that they should be enjoyed responsibly, they are worth the money because you’ll only treat yourself to a bit of luxury once in a while.

Vinoos Real Wine Gums – Riesling are priced at £7.50

Vinoos Real Wine Gums – Mini Snoopers are priced at £2.00 (for two in a box)

As always, I love to hear from you so let me know what you think about these sweets by leaving a comment below.

You can also join in on the conversation on Twitter using the hashtag #RealWineGums

Kel xo

lifestyle · relationships

Open Marriages: Do or Don’t?

Once again, the discussion surrounding open marriages has been reignited. Singer Teyana Taylor recently caused controversy when she revealed that she has had threesomes with her basketball player husband, Iman Shumpert. The relevation was made on a song from her new album, K.T.S.E, titled ‘3Way’. As a avid user of Twitter, I couldn’t help but read the tweets in response to this revelation. While many users seemed to disagree with what Taylor defines as a ‘no limits’ marriage, some people embraced the idea of having an open marriage as a whole.

This post is a collaboration with fellow blogger and v-logger Wini Boansi. We both have different views on the subject of an open marriage.

I DISAGREE with the idea of an open marriage and I will tell you why…

Marriage is a sacred union involving two people, and when God created marriage, that’s what exactly He intended it to be. Two people come together, celebrate their love and promise to honour each other until death parts them. That’s what marriage is. Marriage is challenging enough with two people in it, so can you imagine the impending disaster that would inevitably come from adding a third person into the mix? In her explosive 1995 interview with Panaroma, Princess Diana, when asked about the breakdown of her marriage to Prince Charles, said ‘ Well, there were three of us in this marriage, so it was a bit crowded’. There’s no denying that monogamy is the foundation of a successful marriage. Once one person has been unfaithful, the whole relationship is immediately in jeopardy. While some couples may be able to pull off having an open marriage, there’s no denying it is a high risk proposition.

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Love and commitment should be the foundation of any relationship, whether it’s a  partnership or a marriage. A lack of trust is like a broken mirror, it can be fixed but you can still see the cracks. Despite the difficulties of marriage, it has stood the test of time. There are many wonderful examples of couples who have made it work, so why is marriage being redefined? In my opinion, an open marriage is a free pass to cheat. It is a selfish decision which is usually enforced by one party, as they relish the opportunity to do who and what they please. Due to external influences such as social media, our moral climate is shifting, but please, let’s not act like marriage is whatever we want to make it.

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Wini Boansi AGREES with the idea of an open marriage and she explains why…

When people live their lives differently to ours, everyone goes into attack mode. Sexual liberation has almost become a phenomenon in our society. Women are definitely able to live their lives and do as they please with their bodies, however, when a woman comes out to say that her and her husband have an open marriage and they are happy, all of a sudden our support for women’s rights to make their own decisions go out of the window. The comedian Mo’Nique was criticised when she revealed she was in an open marriage.

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I can understand why some people detest the idea of an open marriage, however restricting the liberation of others is closed minded in a sense. It really isn’t our business how couples chose to spice up their marriages. Marriage is all about love, respect, understanding and building a life with the partner of your choice. If that couple fulfils all of the mentioned traits and they have a mutual agreement that allows them to have sexual relations with others, what is the problem?

Clearly their marriage and sexual choices were discussed prior to marriage, and both parties are comfortable with this set up. If this wasn’t the case, then I could understand where the uproar is coming from. In other words, if you were not keen on the idea of an open marriage, then you simply wouldn’t marry someone that wanted one, right?

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Some people pick and chose which openly married couple they want to be outraged about. Age does not matter, when it comes to being in an open relationship. We all have different sexual desires that need catering to. The most important thing is that openly married couples practice safe and consensual sex. Open marriages were a thing in the past and we should understand that everyone’s idea of what a marriage should be like will be different. What’s to say that openly married couples aren’t 100% happy with their situation? An open marriage celebrates sexual liberation while still allowing a loving couple to be united. If this does become the new norm in marriage then who are we to judge?

Thanks for reading this post. As always, I love to hear from the readers of It’s Kelle’s Space. What are your views on open marriage? Would you have an open marriage? Or do you think the whole idea is a no no?

I asked my Twitter followers what they thought in a poll and this is the result so far:

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Kel xo

lifestyle

How To Make The Most Out Of Summer

If you live in London, then I’m sure you are enjoying the fabulous heatwave we have right now. If you are reading this and sighing, just remember that we have waited so long for this weather, so appreciate it while it’s still here. Speaking of appreciating the glorious weather, I have a fantastic post from a guest author (the first on It’s Kelle’s Space) telling you how you can make the most out of summer.

Enjoy!

Whether you’re in London or right up in Scotland, there’s no getting away from the summer heat wave right now. It’s unusually hot for the time of year in the UK, and the warm weather is set to stick around for another few weeks at least. If you’re wondering how you can make the most out of our mini heatwave, whether you’re at work or at home, check out some of these ideas below:

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Head to the beach

 If you’re lucky enough to live close to the beach, then make the most out of it while the sun is shining. Whether you just go for a walk with your dog or you pack a summer-inspired picnic and soak up some rays over lunch, there’s truly no better place to be if you want to enjoy the sun. Just remember to bring along some sun cream, and pack some sandals to wear when you’re walking on the beach because nobody likes sand in their shoes!

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Organise a barbecue

 Invite the whole family over to yours and prepare a delicious barbecue while the sun’s out. You can pick up disposable barbecues in local supermarkets for just a couple of pounds, and the rest is down to you. You can keep it traditional with burgers, sausages and chicken skewers, or you could get experimental and create your own barbecued fish and vegetarian dishes, too.

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Have a weekend away

Pack your backs and organise an impromptu weekend away in the sun. Staycations are on the rise, with more of us choosing to say right here in the UK than go overseas for a mini break. And if you’re thinking of travelling with your girlfriends, then consider one of the party houses offered by Landed Houses. Designed for a good time, these houses are set within a deep country estate and are perfect for letting down your hair and having some weekend fun.

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Go for a bike ride

 If you know how to ride a bike, you’ll never forget! Summer is the perfect time to dust off your old Bridgford bike and go and explore the countryside. There are hundreds of bike-friendly trails dotted around the country, including those within National Trust parks. Remember to oil up your bike if it hasn’t been used in a while, and pump up the tyres to make your trip more comfortable.

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 Work outside

Work from home or run your own business? Quit the office for a day and work in the garden or your local park, instead. Working in the great outdoors helps you take in some fresh air and feel like you’re getting involved, even if you have a million and one assignments you need to finish. Find a shady tree and open up your laptop there – and find an anti-glare screen cover if you’re always squinting. Oh, and remember to bring a portable battery pack if you’re going to be work outdoors all day, as the chances are your MacBook will run out of juice after a couple of hours!

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Another thing you could do to make the most out of summer is volunteer, either in the U.K or abroad. There are lots of organisations that could use your skills. For example, if you are a teacher, you might want to consider volunteering for some tutoring.

What are you getting up to this summer? Let me know in the comments section below!

Kel xo

 

lifestyle

How To Use Social Media In A Positive Way

Social media.

Two very powerful words that have a magnificent impact on our society.

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This generation has become increasingly reliant on social media. Whether it’s sharing your latest pictures on Instagram or letting your Facebook friends know how you feel five to ten times a day, there’s no denying the influence social media has on our lives and the entire world.

However, social media can do more harm than good. It has been cited as the reason for many ailments such as anxiety and depression. In this post, I’m going to share a few tips on how you can use social media in a way that will benefit you.

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Be positive

Don’t be afraid to spread love and encouragement when you log on. I think that social media has become quite negative thanks to trolls, pointless arguments and meaningless drama. Don’t forget that you can compliment others, you can be friendly. Be a light in this (sometimes) dark world we live in.

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Connect with like minded people

Follow people who mean something to you. Whether its friends, family or industry professionals. There’s no doubt that logging on to social media and seeing posts from people you care about will make a difference to your day and of course, your overall mood.

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Avoid the ‘showdowns’

This is a really difficult one, especially on a site like Twitter, where the norm these days is to challenge anyone who has a different opinion to yours. Remember that your opinion is yours and you are entitled to express it. If things start to get ugly online and you need to use the block button, do it.

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Stop comparing yourself to others

I think this is one of the most prevalent social media issues. The art of comparison. Whether it’s seeing someone who appears to have a fabulous life or the perfect body or even relationship, comparing yourself with others will steal your joy. If you find you indulge in self comparison way more than you should, you need to either unfollow certain accounts/pages or take a detox.

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Promote yourself

If you have a project, business or another side hustle then use your social media channels to promote this. After all, no one will know where your passion lies if you don’t share it with the world. As a part time blogger, I promote my posts as much as I can and it’s a great way to deter yourself from the negative side of social media. You’ll get more interest from others and you’ll also connect with like minded people in the process too!

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Detox

I have mentioned this in two of the previous points. You don’t know how good a social media detox is until you’ve actually done one. You don’t even need to delete your accounts to do it. You can spend some invaluable time on yourself: apply for that job, go for a lovely walk in the park, have a clear out…the list is endless. There is life outside of social media: enjoy it!

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In addition to the above, I would say don’t take social media too seriously. Respect yourself and others and don’t let anybody put you down.

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I hope some of these tips I’ve shared have helped you and also, feel free to comment with your own as I always love to hear from you all.

Kel xo