Hair's My New Look!

I had a colour change recently- going from a blonde to a chestnut redhead. Then a fortnight ago I had another colour to make my red even more vibrant! Hair's my new look! (see what I did there - 'here' / 'hair'!!) *groan* My jokes are so bad!



Having taken the step to go red back in September, I was feeling braver and wanted to go richer- more red and bump my colour up a few notches, so I went to the Regis salon in Leeds, armed with my pictures of famous red-heads and asked them to recreate it for me!

On my sheet of lovely reddies was Marcia Cross, Isla Fisher, Rose McGowan, Jill Zarin, Julianne Moore and Bella Thorne. I have to say, I think they did a great job. Here is me just before the stylist got to work...




Sam who was my stylist for the visit was brilliant. She knew just what kind of red I wanted and made sure that I got what I'd asked for. As my hair is so porous, it can take a while for a new colour to 'grab', so after colouring my hair Sam felt that I needed to have a colour refresher on the hair and a conditioning treatment, to make the colour look vibrant and shiny rather than 'flat'. I liked the way that she cared as much as I did about getting it right, and she checked I was ok for time, before doing anything extra.

It was a nice treat for me to get to a Central Leeds salon in the middle of the day. My youngest child started school full time from September, so this was one of the first 'days out' I'd had on my own without having to rush back for a nursery collection! I decided to make a day of it and do a little Christmas shopping in the morning before my salon visit, so it was a nice day. Fortunately I was doing a detox the week I went to the salon, so I'd already prepared a lunchtime smoothie to drink which I took in my bag, because it's awful when you are in a hair salon over the lunch period and not prepared, and you have to sit there hungry until you are released! So I was quite comfortable with my smoothie and the herbal teabags I took in with me which they kept boiling hot water for!

Having been all hair colours over the years, this is the first time I've been red, so I will keep this shade for a while. I think it adds warmth to my face and freshens up my look a bit!

I want to say a massive "Thank you" to Regis who gave me the colour and cut for free, in return for my participation in their recent Regis campaign to unveil the new face of Regis Salons! Here was my blog post about their announcement.

After the visit, the PR for Regis sent me some Designline Colour Care Shampoo and Conditioner as well as some styling products. It was really nice to get a shampoo and conditioner that are designed to help keep the colour locked in, as it is heartbreaking when you see the colour you have had on, washed down the plughole after one wash! The set smelled really nice and the size of the bottles is decent too. I liked how the conditioner was as big as the shampoo bottle as it drives me nuts when you get the matching conditioner to a shampoo and the bottle is smaller! I use more conditioner than shampoo as my hair is so dry!

So that is my new look for Christmas. Are you having a change - maybe a new look you for 2012? Leave me a comment below!

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The App That 'POYNTs' You The Way!

*This is a Sponsored Post*

When I was emailed about a new app that promises to save busy parents time, a little excitement welled up inside! I am a busy mum, I'm juggling a lot of balls(!) and we all know how quickly life moves. Whatever I can do myself to enable me to glide through the day as smoothly as I can, I'm on it.

Did you see my video about how to ensure you don't get locked out? Or the video about staying on top of the costs and kids needs on a family day out? As you can see, I like little tricks to make life easier and be prepared, so I was all set to give this app a go!

Here is how the app looks on your phone:

As you can see, the screen is quite 'sunny' but this app links to the weather so if you are having a cloudy day where you are, the screen will be darker in the background. I thought this was quite cute- and it gives you information without you having to think about it!

I recently upgraded my phone so now I have an iPhone which makes it really easy to get apps. I searched for 'POYNT' in the App Store and found it straightaway. This is what the logo looks like so you know you have got the right app:


Basically what this app does is to help you find businesses, restaurants, movies and events that are local to you. So if you go out socially a lot- or visit places you are unfamiliar with, it can be really useful for helping you save time in finding what you need.

Here is how I used it for a week...

As we are getting close to Christmas and I'm having the family round, I knew I wanted to get my carpets cleaned, so I used the app to find local carper cleaners in my area. It displays the results in order of which business is closest to you geographically, and gives you the address. There is also the option to see the location of the business on a map, get directions or call from the app, so you don't have to copy and paste phone numbers into your keypad. I thought this was quite good, so I entered a few other business types to check that everything I could think of was represented. I don't currently need a locksmith or cavity wall insulation but it's reassuring to know that if I ever do need someone local of this nature, I can get their details quite easily through this app!

I liked the 'Movies' section of the app, as hubby and I are quite the movie buffs. Since having kids we don't get there as much as we used to but if we ever do get a chance to go to the cinema, we never know what is on (whereas at one time we would not only know what is coming out but have already seen most new releases on the day they premiere!) Using the app I could see what films are currently out and who is in them, as well as watch the trailer. You can search 'movies nearby' to see where they are playing as some cinemas won't always have everything showing, especially if a film is older. You can get today's screen times, directions to the theatre and call the cinema. The only thing you can't currently do from the app is book tickets, but you can ring them and do it that way, so you pretty much have everything you need within this feature.

Restaurants was a useful app when we went on a night out to a nearby city that we aren't familiar with. One of my husband's clients invited us to their Christmas party, so we had to meet at a certain restaurant. We had never been there before so once we'd parked up, I was able to search for the place using the app then get directions to walk there. I think that feature alone saved an argument (you know what blokes are like about asking for directions!)

The only feature of the app that I didn't really use was the 'Events' section. I had a play with it at home to see what it could do, but it wasn't really relevant to me at the time I tested the app. I think this feature would be more useful to me personally during the school summer holidays when I'm looking for ideas to entertain the kids and the weather is nice so we might look at a festival or being outdoors. Poynt did have a 'kids and family' section within 'Events' and currently this brings up a list of local pantomimes and church services, so it defintely has information all year round, but in the winter time, I'm not really looking for events - we tend to hibernate a bit more at this time of year! I was quite impressed however at the range of categories that this part of the app had. Whether you want to find a sci fi convention or a pet show- you can get the info here!

The app is free so really why wouldn't you give it a try! There are adverts in the search results and that pop up at the bottom but these are not intrusive. It is worth having the ads to get the information for free- it really has proved to be a useful app.

I like things clutter free and to have everything in its place and this includes my iPhone screen! Most of my other apps are organised into boxes like 'Cities', 'Shopping', 'Games' etc but I have left the Poynt app on my homescreen and actually filed away the weather app which I had on before. This is quite a big deal for me as something has to be really good in order to be allowed to 'stand alone' on my phone. My other stand alone apps include the calculator which I use a lot, Twitter (just look at my tweet stream to see how much I use this! I am @businessmum) and Voice Memos. I regularly use this to dictate things I don't want to forget. Oh, and my Shopping List is also a stand alone app because I use this every day to keep on top of my household purchasing!

You can learn more about the app here at their website: http://poynt.com

Poynt is currently available in 8 countries, so I reckon it would be quite good for holidays- you never know when you'll need a doctor or a late night pharmacy when you don't know the layout of the land. I will be taking this with me when we go on our next family holiday. All in all, this is a very useful little app!

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Give a Girl A Kindle This Christmas!

Ok this is an appeal.

But not your usual Christmas appeal, this one is to make MY Christmas wish come true! Woo hoo!

I'm in a competition with 18 other bloggers, all of whom have said what they'd like for Christmas. here is where you can vote for me! http://glam.co.uk/2011/12/juggle-mums-christmas-wish/

We all have a page on Glam's website (Glam is my blog advertising provider) and everyone has to ask their friends, family and followers to vote to help them win! Whoever has the most votes (or '+1s') at 5pm on Tuesday 20th December, wins their Christmas wish!

I have wished for a Kindle. I love to read when I get the chance, and my bedside table currently has a stack of about 6 books that are in line to be read! However I also like things clutter free and tidy around me! So I would love a Kindle to store all my books on then I don't have all the mess but I can still read to my little heart's content!

If you give me a vote here, you will be helping to make my wish come true!!

Here is what their page looks like:


Thank you in advance for taking a few minutes to cast your vote!! ...I'll let you know if all my blogging and Twitter campaigning worked!!! (hehe)

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I Got Papped!

*Stop press* Juggle Mum got papped!

I'm just kidding, but I have been in the press quite a bit over the last few months! Let me show you a bit of the coverage...


This was the September 2011 issue, and the article was about mums returning to work. I gave a column's worth of tips which you can see in the box to the right here (Slimline your day):


I'm also featured in Good Housekeeping's January 2012 issue which is out now!

The article on finding the pause button features my tips for a calm children's bedtime routine!



And not forgetting radio, I'll be on BBC Radio Leeds today for the drive time show talking about how savvy shoppers now use coupons to save cash in this economy! You can listen live at about 5.30pm here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/leeds/programmes

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How Clean Is Your House?

The BritMums ladies posed the question: "How clean is your house?"

Here is my answer- broadcasted from my downstairs toilet - nice!




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A Four Year Old's Fashion



This is how my 4 year old is going to school today. Nuff said.

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The Littlewoods Fashion Challenge!

Now I love the word 'fashion' and I'm always up for a fun challenge so when Littlewoods wanted to see if me and two other bloggers could rock 5 items of clothing for one week, I knew I'd be keen to give it a go!
Little do they know that I have a trick up my sleeve - I'm an ex London College of Fashion girl- my styling kit came everywhere with me 15 years ago, so I know a thing or two about making an outfit work. The kit is probably up in the loft now but I will dust it off and get ready for the week long fashion fiesta! The pieces they are sending me are still to be decided- I'll fill you in once I know!

This isn't the first time I've worn some Littlewoods clothes. Do you remember how my kids and I went to London last month for the Littlewoods Bloggers Christmas event? Well after that day of cake and having my make up done, I posed for a fashion shoot with my kids and here is the result!

Here is my look book provided after my shoot

and

and


To check out the stuff Littlewoods has for yourself, you can watch their Christmas TV ad below:


Or visit www.Littlewoods.com for their website.

So I'm up for the challenge and will be reporting the results on this blog. I just hope that there is nothing resembling harem pants in the package. I looked like I was wearing a nappy when I wore them last time round in the 80's (remember MC Hammer?!) and have had two babies in nappies since then so I just don't think they'd be a good look for me!!

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At Home Column: Business Mum: 'Luxuriates At Home!'

I don’t know if it is the clocks going back, bringing darker days and darker nights, or if it is the cold weather so the woollies come out, but recently I’ve been yearning to hibernate!

Running a business, daily work, doing the school run, running a home – all of these things mean that I have to get out of bed on a morning, there is no choice, but my cosy bed is looking more and more inviting the further we get towards winter. This is why I decided to have a cosy day at home during the weekend!

Sometimes a duvet day is exactly what you need to nourish your soul in the winter months. Busy mums spend most of the time rushing round after everyone else, but we should make sure we have at least one weekend day off in the winter time to stay at home, watch DVDs, eat chocolate and pamper ourselves with luxury bath products.

When you are doing the daily juggle, it’s easy to forget to have fun sometimes. Like any special event, a relaxing day at home needs some advance planning, so here is my check list that every Jugglista needs for her own special duvet day!

First, in advance of your duvet day, wash your bedding! It makes the experience much nicer when you have clean crisp sheets to crawl into!


Next, dig out some cosy pyjamas. I have to confess, there’s nothing more appealing to me than a lovely new set of jammies so if I can afford to I like to get a new pair, or ask people for them for birthdays and Christmas then I can save them for a special duvet day.


After this, choose the movies you want to watch in advance and get it on DVD, or, if you have Sky TV, flick through the menu a week or so before your duvet day to see what movies are showing then set record. It’s a good idea to do this regularly anyway, as there are some great family movies on during the week when we don’t have time to watch them, and it feels like we are making the most out of the monthly subscription if we have recorded a few to have on the ‘Planner’ in case we get chance on a Sunday!


So you have set the scene, chosen your outfit and sorted the entertainment next we move onto the food. On a duvet day I like easy to prepare food that doesn’t require any chopping or extra thinking about so a pizza is a safe choice. I also like to have some chocolate in the cupboard... just because!


Another part of the day will involve having a bubble bath and painting my nails so I make sure that I have a nice nail colour in and also enough bubbles!


Now that all parts of the duvet day are in place, all you have to do is to enjoy it! In my house, what would typically happen is that the kids would see me about to have a bubble bath and get into a comfy bed with a stack of movies then decide they want to be part of it too, so if you want your day solo, have your partner take the kids out somewhere. I don’t mind the kids joining me though... as long as they don’t bounce around in the bed or try to take my chocolate!



I write a fortnightly column for At Home - the Premier UK celebrity and lifestyle magazine, and this one appeared on their site www.AtHomeMagazine.co.uk a month ago. Do visit At Home and leave me a comment on the post there so they get to see your opinions too!
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About the Author
Nadine Hill is a busy working mum (“Is there any other kind?!”) who has a fascination with time management which borders on the obsessive! She loves to find more effective ways of doing the daily juggle whilst enjoying the journey and has lots of practise through raising her two children, managing her small business, being a best-selling author, running her home, public speaking and finding time to get to the gym! Nadine’s ambition is to help busy mums claw back a bit of ‘me time’ so she shares her tips with at home in these fortnightly columns and her own life stories on her blog- Juggle Mum.
She also micro blogs on Twitter where she is @Businessmum. You can learn more about Nadine at www.NadineHill.com