Lifestyle Essentials: Trees, baguettes, rollers, Stoptober & Lifelines

As I type out this new list of lifestyle essentials I am conscious that many of us are worrying about obtaining a few litres of petrol (or considering buying an electric car!), rising gas prices and, I’m sure, many other of the things that are being sent to try us in this current climate. So here are a few (mostly) inexpensive items that might lift your spirits a little or prove really useful additions around your home…

NATURAL SOY CANDLES 100% soy wax scented candles in pretty lidded tins. Myrrh, lavender, cherry and orange fragrances. £9.99 MORE INFO

FRAUD PREVENTION ROLLER We need to be vigilant about Identity theft which is on the increase. One of the ways criminals obtain your personal information is rifling through your rubbish so, instead of painstakingly putting paperwork through a shredder, you can simply obscure personal information on your redundant paperwork using this nifty little ink roller. Each roller stamp lasts for approx 1000 uses. 2 rollers for £9.59 MORE INFO

CURCUMIN We have long been ardent fans of turmeric here at A&G. The active ingredient in turmeric is curcumin and Solgar softgels are a great way to get this into your body. My doctor once told me that most 60+ women will get arthritis to some degree. Curcumin – especially made from turmeric extract, which this product is, can be very helpful with alleviating arthritic pain (my friend H. swears by this supplement) as well as supporting your brain and immune system. Usually around £30, I spotted this on Amazon for the reduced price of £19.85 MORE INFO

BAGUETTE BAG This is a trendsetting style that you may well have already noticed featured in glossy fashion magazines. I found this Ava grained leather handbag from Artichoke sooooo comfortable to wear on my shoulder, it sits perfectly and is light, yet large enough to carry everything you need. £42 MORE INFO

STOPTOBER If you’re thinking of quitting smoking, October is a good time to do it. More info on Stoptober here. You could try the free NHS app and/or use e-cigarettes such as the IQOS system(which carry a small fraction of the risk of ordinary cigarettes) to stop puffing.

MEANINGFUL GIFT Thanks to Sally for giving me the heads up on The Present Tree. If you are looking for a thoughtful gift, this could be the website for you. I chose to give the aromatic Myrtle tree which symbolises love, harmony and joy. Beautifully presented, any of these plants will of course give the lucky recipient much pleasure for many years. MORE INFO

RIDGED FINGERNAILS? I used Dr Google to find out why my nails are ridged and it seems it is usually (yet another) sign of age. As if I needed anything to remind me that I am getting on a bit! Anyhow, can easily be resolved with a very light weekly buff and a good dollop of nourishing oil such as Mavala’s Flex Serum for Nails and their nail buffer kit.

HANDWASH REFILLS M&S’s Apothecary range – wonderful products in my book and inexpensive too – have economical refill pouches. Tranquil is my favourite fragrance – calming and uplifting at the same time, but they all smell good actually. £7.50 MORE INFO

Stuart Sandeman

BREATH POD Thanks to L. for this recommendation. It is a free app hosted by Stuart Sandeman (who just happens to have the most wonderful Scottish brogue and is pretty easy on the eyes too!). Set your alarm for 20 minutes of breathing exercises… will set you up for the day. YOUTUBE LINK

FREE MUSIC I may know my way around the back of a website and I’m slowly getting to grips with everything that my mobile can do, but when it comes to music I’m a Luddite. Which is why I have only just discovered that as a member of Amazon Prime, Amazon Music Prime is included. I had no idea and when I was looking into how to play my choice of music in my car, I realised there were two million songs, all ad-free and included in the membership. So now I have the Rolling Stones belting out as I drive along. Couldn’t be happier. Although thankfully no-one can hear me belting out the tunes out of tune!

You may also enjoy the music videos of the Baby Boomer 70s and 80s that you can watch and enjoy on That’s TV Gold on Sky, Channel 187.

One last freebie. BBC SOUNDS Have been listening and thoroughly enjoying working my way through five series of LifeLines, the award winning drama on BBC Sounds. Set in an ambulance call centre, it makes riveting listening. If you are going to listen while out and about download beforehand when you are connected to wifi otherwise you will use up your mobile data (a lesson I recently learned the hard way!).

Hope you found one or two of the above interesting… take care, Grace