Why More and More English Holidaymakers are Flocking to Scotland

As well as my passion for childcare, I also love going on holiday an reviewing holiday destinations, last year, we went to highlands of Scotland:

Today’s world can be a busy and crowded place. Sometimes, it seems that there is nowhere in England where you can experience true solitude any more. Perhaps this is why so many of England’s city-dwellers are drawn to the mystical wildernesses to be found north of the border. While Scotland covers a large percentage of the land area of the UK, it only has a population of fewer than 5.5 million. Compare that to Greater London, which has a population of around 8.6 million and England, which has a population of over 53 million, and you begin to see why Scotland feels so much less congested than areas further south. According to statisticians, only 0.4% of Scottish land is ‘built on’. Only 2.3% of England is technically counted as ‘built on’ land – but at times and in some places that number can certainly feel a lot higher. And when it comes down to it, there are just far, far more people living living in England – making it harder to get some time to yourself. No wonder holing up in lodges with hot tubs in Scotland, somewhere out in the wilds, is so appealing.

Scotland’s dramatic landscape does not only offer an escape from the crowds of urban living. The landscape itself is also a huge draw. From the high, rugged mountain peaks, through the rolling glens, rushing rivers, deep lochs, fecund farmland and ancient forests and down to a crinkled, varied coastline with rocky cliffs and crags interspersed with gorgeous sandy beaches, Scotland’s beauty cannot be surpassed. Photographers, artists and those who appreciate natural wonders are drawn to gaze at Scotland’s fantastic vistas.

The landscape is also a natural playground, attracting many from further south to enjoy active pursuits in the mountains and on the waters. ‘Munro bagging’ is a popular pastime – climbing as many as possible of Scotland’s mountain peaks as possible can become an addiction and each year draws many hikers up from south of the border again and again. While England’s green and pleasant land does allow for some lovely rambles and hill walks, only Scotland can deliver truly rugged and dramatic mountains that can be a challenge to even the fittest mountaineers. It is not just the mountains though that offer a hiking paradise. In Scotland, it is possible to walk for miles and miles and miles without seeing a single soul in some regions. The weather can turn on a dime and there is scope for real adventure. Add in the options of cycle-touring, mountain biking, kayaking, gorge walking, rafting and a whole host of other outdoors activities and you are onto a winning formula.

Scotland’s unique and bloody history is also a strong draw for those sassanachs. A plethora of castles and keeps, churches and fortifications dot the landscape alongside a high concentration of other important historic sites. Venerable towns and cities are filled with cultural highlights. And then of course, there is the whisky. Distilleries indoctrinate visitors into the mysterious world of the single malt, just one of many cultural treasure-troves.

The best way to see why so many English people come to Scotland is to do so yourself. Come and see what this strong, proud country is really like and you may find you never want to return to the south.

Tips on House Cleaning Volume #1: Ovens

More than often it may seem like oven cleaning is the worst part of cleaning your kitchen, but it doesn’t have to be anymore. When an oven has not been washed for a while; and there is presence of drips and stains of burnt food and oil all over the surfaces, it may seem like a tough job. Nonetheless, with the right cleaning products and a good strategy, oven cleaning can turn out to be a simple task.

There are many types of kitchen cleaners specifically made for oven cleaning. These oven cleaners are safe for use in your home and never disappoint.

If you’d opt for natural kitchen cleaners, it is easy to take advantage of home made products to take care of the oil and stains. For burnt food, a mixture of water and baking soda works great, and for weird smells, several lemons sliced into two works great.

However, if you prefer the natural option it would be the most ideal way to give your oven a one of a kind cleaning with a commercial oven cleaning product, and often maintain the cleanliness with natural products. It is always a great idea to go through the manufacturers guide to find out what cleaning products and methods are ideal for your type of oven, for more info, see the BBQ Cleaner, one of the US’s best cleaning business opportunities.


oven cleaning


– For oily residues, go for a commercial oven cleaner specially made to eliminate tough oil by simply applying the products to the interior walls of the appliance, and avoiding the heating source. Do not forget to always adhere to the guidelines on the products label. Usually, it is ideal to leave the product for around 30 minutes before wiping with a wet sponge. Alternatively, you can use a basin with warm water and soap with oil removing capabilities, and carefully wipe the interior and the oven door.

– For burnt food, use an oven cleaner in the same way as stated above, focusing more on the problematic areas. Alternatively, sprinkle baking soda on the areas in question. Spray with a little cold water from a spritzer bottle and leave for a several hours or overnight if need be. Wipe with a wet sponge and the burnt food will come off.

– For unpleasant odors that come from burnt food at the bottom of the oven; for starters you need to eliminate the stains by following the above listed steps. Then cut two lemons into half and place in a roasting dish with a little amount of water. Heat the oven for about 200 degrees and place the dish inside for about 30 minutes. Not only will your oven have a smell fresh, but the citrus oils that are released by the lemons will assist you to minimize the build up of grease.

If all this seems too much, I have occasionally been guilty of using professional oven cleaners, such as Ovenu. They really know how to clean an oven and are always the friendliest.

Best Day Trips for Children in the London Area

If you live in the London Area and are looking for something entertaining to do with your family, you will be spoiled for choice. There are a wide range of day trips for children nearby. Of course there are any number of excellent museums and attractions in the city itself, but sometimes you may want to get out of the bustling capital and get a taste of the countryside. Here are just a few suggestions for child-friendly excursions that will allow you to do just that:

– Ashdown Forest:

If your kids like Winnie-the-Pooh then you should consider taking them to the ‘real’ woods inhabited by Pooh and his friends – the place where A. A. Milne got inspiration for his stories. Take an ‘expotition’ to find many sites familiar to readers of the books and enjoy pottering about on a range of walks through picturesque woodland.

– Garsons Farm:

London-folks can come here for a taste of the good-life. Show the kids where their food comes from. Picking soft fruits will be fun for all the family – then of course there is the joy of tasting the fresh, delicious berries afterwards. Lovely for a day trip on a warm summer’s day.

Go Ape Centres:

Head to one of these forest playgrounds and the whole family can swing, zip, climb and scramble as much as they please. You and your whole family can let off some steam among the trees – fun for kids big and small.

– Willows Farm Village:

If you want to see entertaining farm animals then this is the place to come for a day trip. here are a range of the usual farm animals you might expect and also a couple of more exotic things like reindeer and wallabies! The kids will love petting the animals and if they get a bit bored with that, there is also an adventure playground and even a sandpit with real, ride-on diggers.

– ZSL Whipsnade Zoo:

To see exotic wild animals living in conditions as close as possible to those they might experience in the wild, visit Whipsnade, where the animals are spread out over 600 acres of Bedfordshire. Here you can see most of the favourite exotic animals, including chimps, elephants, giraffes, lions, hippos and zebra.

– Woburn Safari Park:

Another option for wildlife lovers. Woburn safari park also covers quite a wide area. Families will enjoy the many activity areas dotted around the park. Here, you can drive through enclosures of a variety of exotic animals and can get up close to the lemurs, monkeys and penguins on foot.

– The Lodge RSPB Reserve:

See the birds and bugs on nature walks around this pretty reserve made up of woodlands, grasslands and heath. Children can get explorer backpacks containing everything they need for their wildlife investigations, including binoculars, bug viewers, guides and activity booklets. Plenty to keep the whole family entertained.

There are many more options for day trips for children in the London area, including many historic sights which will be of interest to many children – especially those who enjoy horrible histories or fairytale adventures. A trip to the seaside is also an enduring favourite, and there are many different options if you fancy a day of paddling, sandcastles and ice creams. Hill walks and country strolls are a free option and can be a lot of fun on the right day. Kids will always enjoy a picnic lunch – wherever you take them.

How To Shop Online for Your Childrens’ Clothes Effectively

Having kids is a gift, those little ones bring with them joy and fulfillment. They are every parent’s reason to live. That is why parents all over the world struggle to provide for their children and give them the best they can. However, when it comes to kids clothes, it can be a little tricky.

It is not easy to tell your kids size just by looking at some outfits, moreover, your little ones will grow overnight. Hence, the dress you may have bought two months ago may already be too small. This is why buying new clothes for your kids often cannot be avoided.

Nowadays most people prefer shopping for necessities online. Not only is it convenient, it also gives a wide variety to choose from and saves the time that could have been otherwise spent looking for the items. Kids’ clothes are no exception and most parents have opted for this method for its obvious reasons.

kids clothes

There are a multitude of online shopping sites that one could visit to purchase clothes for their kids. Most of these websites have catalogues which clearly describe the items for sale, for whom they are best suited for, and their prices. For kids, a good site have clothes for each age group, for instance, newborns, ages 1-2 years, 5-7 years etc in their small, medium and large sizes.

While shopping for kids clothes online, it is important to consider the brands, designs and styles you prefer, for example brands from Disney, Barbie, Cupcake, and Levi’s Kids among others. Also, choose to shop from a site that accepts returns since it is tricky to find just the right fit for your little boy or girl. One with a range of options is also more helpful as it gives you more alternatives.

Other factors to put into consideration are the clothes function, their price, material, colors and gender; girls like more colorful items unlike boys. Good thing shopping is fun.