New York – First Solo Trip

Part 1 – The arrangements

This is going to be a 4 part blog about my trip to New York.

The first part is making travel arrangements.

I was having a conversation with my mum about what to do with the 2 weeks I booked off work.

I debated about cancelling them, about doing mini trips and about going on holiday with my mum.

My mum suggested I spoke with my Auntie who is currently living in New Jersey.

I spent 3 days thinking of the politest way I could ask if I could come visit.

In my message to her I told her what had happened with my ex and that I would love to come visit. She said yes for me visiting.

The hardest part was trying to find flights. This would have been twice as hard if I had to get a hotel too.

I managed to find a flight on Travel Junction. I hadn’t used this site before and read some poor reviews but the flights were perfect and at a reasonable price – around £300 for a return. I put my faith in the company and I was surprised but how quickly I got my ticket reference.

The day I booked the flights, I emailed them asking when I would get my reference number, I was promised next day and I got it next day.

The flights were direct from Birmingham going to Newark. Coming back I had to go via Edinburgh (an experience I will detail later).

With the flights booked I let my Auntie know and I ordered my money.

I always seem to get my money from FairFX. They do the best exchange rates and have a quick turn around. For secruity reasons I had to call them to clarify but my money came the next day.

Next was travel insurance, again my go to company is Alpha Insurance. Travel insurance to USA is expensive but with Alpha insurance I spent about £40. They normally do good deals if you want £0-£50 excess.

Second to last was the Visa. This application is quick and simple. Simply fill out the details and pay a £14 fee. You will need to know the address and phone number of your final destination so I would suggest do this once the hotel is booked.

Lastly was to pack. The weather in September is still in the high 20’s so I packed shorts and t-shirts. Items like sunscreen, bug repellent and itch cream I didn’t pack as I knew I could buy it there. Remember to pack comfy shoes! New York requires a lot of walking, It’s one of the quickest ways to get about. Even if you are wearing a cute dress no one will judge if you throw on a pair of sketchers run 400’s (so comfy) because everyone is in the same boat.

Coming up :

Part 2 arrival and my time in NYC

Part 3 the hell of a return

Part 4 Bec’s tips for New York

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2017 so far

Hi all,

Sorry I haven’t been active for a while, it’s been a bit of a crazy few months.

In February I got a new job, working with technology I’ve heard of but never used. I managed to pass my probation and I absolutely love what I am doing.

In March I decided that the relationship I was in (4 years) had too many issues and ended it. It was heartbreaking at the time but it’s true what they say life does go on. Even though it seemed like it was over something stupid looking back it was the right thing to do.

Don’t settle for feeling like your second best girls!!

In May after just looking for a random person to chat to I discovered this really weird kinda dating site. I got chatting to a guy down in the Kent area.

It’s amazing to think that 4 months ago I meet the most perfect guy. We like the same music, same kinda of TV shows and movies. We like to go to museums and go exploring.

He comes up almost every week. We talk on the phone every day. He genuinely is the most caring and loving person in the world.

In September it was my birthday 😊 happy 24th to me and I had 2 weeks off work booked so I decided to go traveling by myself…..

So there we have it, I’ll be posting a new blog shortly about my travels

Got my ear pierced

So yesterday (20/05) I went into my town centre and visited a shop called Blue Banana.

For those of you who don’t know what Blue Banana is, they are an alternative clothing, piercing specialist, and tattoo shop.

I’ve been to them in the past for my seconds and thirds and they took really good care. When I had these done, you use to have to pay for the aftercare kit which was a shame.

When I went in yesterday I spoke to a lovely lady on the counter, she walked me through the kind of metal I should get as I have sensitive skin when it comes to piercings. I filled out a form on a tablet, which is something new, as in the past it was paper based.

I was told to, if I wanted to wait, go to the basement and put the piercing in the tray, the waiting was the bit that took forever. However I don’t blame Blue Banana for that. The music was repetitive but the piercers were that busy they didn’t have time to change the track.

Once I was finally seen, the piercer got straight to work marking up my ear for the perfect placement. She clamped my ear and then told me to take a deep breath. She then used a needle to pierce my ear, the pain lasted for about a second. Another deep breath and she popped the earring in. It was over just like that.

She walked through the aftercare with me, and I was on my way. Best thing was they gave you a little pouch with some salt and tea tree oil for free.

Below is the result, the little piercing in my helix.

Ear

Review: Huion Tablet and accessories

In May I was given a Huion graphics tablet as a graduation present. This is one of the latest in their lines the WH1409. After reading reviews that said this tablet was like a cheaper Wacom I thought I had to have it.

I’ve used this graphics tablet on both of my laptops and my new PC and I can’t really fault it. The tablet is big enough to comfortably fit on my lap and to give me a good work surface. The pen is lightweight and doesn’t hurt your hand when using it for a long period.

The tablet has 12 buttons which you can customize and which I am still getting use to as well as led lights to let you know the status of the battery on both the pen and the tablet itself.

Although I said I can’t fault the tablet, the one tiny bit that annoys me is the USB receiver. It is about the size of an average USB stick and when I am working on my laptop it can be a bit of a pain. However now I have built my PC i just leave it in the back USB sockets.

Overall for a tablet that is  like a wacom but not a wacom, it is a brilliant buy!!

I was also provided with a glove and some extra nibs. The nibs are easy to remove in the pen and stay in place once clipped in. The glove provides a bit of a support to your hand and stops you from getting tablet burnt – a term which here mean a carpet burn but on a tablet.

The packaging itself 

The graphics tablet came in an amazon box and a Huion branded box. The Huion box has enough support and structure that if you wanted to you could keep the tablet in there. (Plus it smells really nice).

In the box you get:

1 Tablet charger

1 Pen charger

4 Nibs

1 Pen and Nib holder

Documentation

and a cute note from Huion to say thanks for the  purchase.

 

Conclusion 

If I needed to I would buy again.

Bec’ rating : 5/5

 

 

Be…by bubzbeauty review 

If your fans of Lindy Tsang aka Bubzbeauty then you will know that she has recently released an eye shadow palette. This eyeshadow palette is available from BH cosmetics (at time of review I think they are sold out). 

So first things first price….as this palette comes from America the prices might have seemed a lot – $12 plus $5 for delivery. But when you work it out it’s only £14 which in my mind is a decent price for a decent product. 

The product arrived in a brown jiffy bag with cardboard inside to prevent it smashing ect. The palette was wraped in a plastic sleeve and my first thoughts was “omg this is so beautiful”. 

The package of the palette itself is pink with a delicate lace effect and lovely gold lettering. My palette had a wee dent but I dont mind. 

When you open the palette up you are presented with 12 shades all with a different name. The name of these shades truely reflect Bubz and the message she shares with her fans. Inside there is a mirror with a lovely quote on the top that reads “be whatever you want to be.” 

I did a light swatch on my skin and the colours feel very smooth and velvet like. The shimmery colours aren’t rough and provide a really nice subtle shimmer. This is something I find some products don’t have. The product is very light and I can barely tell I have any on my hands. 

The wait was worth it and I can’t wait to actually wear the product. 

Thank you Lindy for this amazing message that fans can relate to and for being an inspiring role model. 

The unrealistic nature of clothing.

So today I went shopping for jeans…my favourite place to get them being new look. Now I am not a skinny person so I get my jeans from the “Curves” selection (previously know as inspire. However here is what I find strange about clothing. New look does size 18 in their “normal” clothes however that 18 is SO different to an 18 in inspire? Why? 

Case point: 

I picked up a normal size 18 and an inspire size 18. 

The normal size 18s were a 30 inch leg while the inspires were a 32 (too long I normally have to roll them up). It would be nice if they did a 30 inch leg in the inspire section because not all plus sized woman are tall!

Trying on the normal, they didn’t even reach my hips!! In the past New look use to match the 2 18s however it doesn’t seem the case now. 

I seriously think this is worth considering at new look. 

The other thing is the pricing difference. I normally by the 18 normal leggings (plus sized 18 leggings are too baggy, what’s the deal with that) because there is about a £4 price difference between the 2 brands. I understand that more material is needed for the plus sizes however there has to be another way to pass on the costs. 

Another issue is have with stores that do a plus size range is that the styles are so bleh… I rarely by plus sized tops because they aren’t stylish and are too baggy or flumpy. Stores need to take a leaf from places like Yours and Simplybe. They offer stylish plus sized clothing! How can they do but other places can’t. 

Retailers need to think about the range they offer to plus sized woman and the sizing of “crossover” sizes (i.e the 18 in normal and 18 in plus size). 

Update to my DP situation

So after sharing my blog post to DP HR via email. They finally got back to me. According to the lovely HR woman, the area manager had left voice mails (which is impossible because I do not have Voicemail activated), HR were shocked to hear that the area manager had not contacted me, even thought I did leave my email at the end of the letter. 

They were very shocked to learn about my experience and the issues have been looked it to and measures have been put in place. 

Hopefully new starters will have a more enjoyable time…However I am a not 100%ready to start shopping at the brand again.