Toad Diaries Review

I can honestly 100% put my hand on my heart and say I love a good bit of stationary and a good diary for me is key for keeping organised and knowing when and where I need to be.

When I first started blogging, I would just use a normal notebook to keep a track of what posts I wanted to write and that was generally about it. Then I went to #BloggerTikiParty and found out abut Toad Diaries and my normal planning was kinda flipped on its head.

Toad Diaries kindly sent me one of their blogging diaries*, which I have to say I have had for just over a month now and I have picked up every day for one reason or another.

So.. when you first open up the diary you are greeted with a personal page where you can pop your name, address and phone number in, just in case it should ever get lost. Ideal really if you are going to take your diary out and about with you.

Toad Diary 2

Following on from this, you then have instruction to make your own origami toad – now I’ll be honest I haven’t tried this as I’m truly rubbish at origami!! The instructions look dead easy to follow though! You’ll find the toad himself at the back of the diary in a handy little wallet.

Toad Diary.jpeg

Also at the back of the diary you’ll find a handful of colourful blank pages which are perfect for making notes (which in turns keeps everything in the same place!!)

Now on to the good stuff.. On the left of each page you have a goals, achieve by, reward and to do list and one the right hand side there is a blank dotted page.

Each page looks to me like to it is designed to be used per week, but me being me, I have decided to use mine per month and also to do my own version of what’s on the left side, on the right side (if that makes sense! I’m sure the picture will make it clear!)

Toad Diary Inside.jpeg

For me, as a newbie blogger, my goals and rewards are the same – basically to go to my own hosted website, but I want to make sure that blogging is for me before my pennies part from my purse – so far so good though, so hopefully we will see a self hosted blog soon!

I’m a huge fan of the this diary and will also be checking out their normal diaries ready for 2017. If you would like to find out more about this diary and their other diaries, then follow this link here and it will take you straight to their website.

Have you tried Toad Diaries before? What do you think of them? Personally I love them!

Sam x

*This post contains a PR sample. The opinion of this sample is of my own thoughts and feelings.



I, like most people, had never heard about 4Louis until Christmas 2015.

4Louis was set up in aid of grieving parents, so that their experience of an Angel Baby is a tiny bit more bearable. An Angel Baby is a baby born still at birth or soon after birth. 17 babies are born stillborn everyday in the UK and there is very little done for those parents and families to help them out of the other side.

The money raised for 4Louis is used for:

  • Memory boxes
  • Moses Baskets
  • Photography equipment
  • Cuddle Cots

The memory boxes are given to parents and they have items in such as teddies, ink to do hand and feet prints, clay impression kit, an acknowledgement of life certificate which are to name just a few. For parents it’s knowing that they’re not alone in this dark place, that there is someone else there who has experienced their pain and in our families case we had something to work towards. We wanted to give back to this charity who had done so much for our loss.

We started to raise money for buy Cuddle Cots. Without Cuddle Cots the baby can only stay with the family for about 24 hours, however with a Cuddle Cot, it allows the baby to be with their family for up 72 hours.  Although it’s only a few hours, those hours make all the difference for the family.

We have been able to raise enough money for one Cuddle Cot to be donated to a hospital in Birmingham, with hopefully more money on its way to buy another one.

Although we would have loved for our Nephew to be with us today, we can hold our heads high to know that we are helping those families in Birmingham and also raising awareness of 4Louis.

If you would like to find out more about 4Louis and see all the hard work they do, just click here and it will take you straight to their website.

Have you raise money for a charity recently?

Sam x

My Fav Apps

It’s all about apps these days – if there’s a website, you can normally find an app for it. So here’s my top apps, which I have downloaded and go back to time and time again:

  • Facebook – I can’t tell you how many years I’ve been on Facebook, but it’s an app which I check daily. I am that person who will be out and about and will whip out my phone and check what happening in everyone else’s lives. Now I’m not one that really posts on there often and I certainly do hang out my dirty laundry like some do, but when they do, you have to admit it’s entertaining reading!!
  • Twitter – Again, I’ve had Twitter for years and I’ve always picked it up after months of neglecting it, however since having my blog, it’s something that I checked every morning, lunch and evening.
  • Instagram – I love Instagram! You don’t need to read much, it’s just all about the photos. I will admit most of my feed is taken up with cats!
  • Pokemon Go – Yes, I’m on that band wagon and I love it! I missed out on Pokemon the first time around, but the other half didn’t and if it wasn’t for him, then I wouldn’t have downloaded it. The best thing is, that currently I’m beating Andy in how many Pokemon I have caught and he’s not impressed!
  • Snapchat – I don’t use this app as often as I should, but I like to keep it, as my brother sends pictures of my niece and if that’s not a good enough reason to keep then I don’t know what is!
  • WordPress – Again, since I having my blog I downloaded the app straight away so I could keep on top of notifications and if I really want to I can write  post while out and about (although I prefer to be at home with the laptop!)
  • Pinterest – This app is ideal for me as I love crafts and you can get so much inspiration from it.
  • YouTube – I listen to music through YouTube, but I also use it from my crafts – especially my knitting – if there’s something I’m not sure on, then I will go straight to YouTube and watch a video to get the knack of it.
  • Whatsapp – I’m one of those people that if you don’t have an iPhone, then like hell am I sending you an pictures! This is where Whatsapp is perfect. Also, the fact that you can easily have group messages going on.
  • Messenger – If you have Facebook, you’ve got to have Messenger – they go hand in hand!

So that’s my top apps at the moment – do you agree, do you have anything which you would add to that list?

Sam x

What’s in the bag?!

I could do this post a few times over for all the bags I use for different occasions, however this time I thought I’d go through what I have in my bag on a night out.

  • Money – let’s face it, you’re not going to get far without it, unless you are’re on of these people who have the nack of getting drinks off everyone. I’m not one of these, so I always make sure I have cash with me and then I take out a couple of bank cards with me. You may be thinking why a couple – well depending on what sort of night out it is, you may need more more money than what you originally planned on, and then you have the whole thing of paying for taxis on the way home. I prefer the better safe than sorry approach!
  • ID – even being in my thirties I still ensure I have my ID with me. It was only a few years back that I got ID’d for filter tips!! I like to think I look nowhere near my age and plus for me, it’s a nice compliment to be asked my age!
  • Phone – to be honest, my phone hardly leaves my hand at the best of times, but it’s ideal for photos and videos.
  • Lippy – because you always need to top it up throughout the night.
  • Eye drops – I’m a glasses wearer 98% of my life, however there are certain times where I will pop the old contact lenses in.  Not only am I blind, but my eyes are also dry so I have to make sure I have drops with me otherwise my eyes just get all sticky and I feel like ripping out my eyes. Not a good feeling really!
  • House keys – if I’m going out local and going home, then I need to get in the house right?!

This is the core of what I take out with me, but there are occasions where I will take out the selfie stick too, but if it’s anything like last time I went out, I took it with me but left it in the hotel room! I’ll sometime chuck in plasters too, if I’m wearing new shoes (I think that’s an age thing though!)

What do you take out with you for a night out? Do you have anything quirky that you just have to take?

Sam x

July Goals and To Do List

July was my first full month of blogging and I can say I have had so much fun doing it. From planning what I’m going to blog about for months in advance to keeping a check on Twitter followers and blog views.

I thought I would share with you all the goals and my to do list I had set for myself and how they turned out:


Tweet every day  – This has been so easy for me – everyone in the blogging community has made me feel so welcome and I’ve felt I have been able to interact with people without being judged. I’ve also had support for Kirsty Leanne who not only has been a friend throughout this process but she has also celebrated my small achievements with me.

At least 1 blog post per week – As I mainly blog at a weekend when I have some peace and quiet from the other half being out, I try to write at least 1 post a weekend, if I can squeeze another in, then brill. I can find sometimes, that writing not one post is even to quench my writing thrust so I find that 2 is normally a good amount for me. I just feel like I want to write all the time!!

Connect with more people on Twitter – I have been connecting with people who have similar interests to myself and so those who are newbies too – We’ve got to stick together right? Although to be honest, if your tweets and your blog are interesting then I’m going to follow!


BloggerTikiParty write up – I wanted to write about this event because it was the first one I went to. There were so many cool goodies that we got given and Kirsty Leanne had worked so hard along with Ashton Gibbs to put together for us that it felt rude not to write about it! You can find my write up on BloggerTikiParty here

Baby Shower Post – I found when looking for baby shower ideas that everything was Americanised so I wanted to put my own spin on and have some games on there that I had put together – again the link for this post is here

5 Year Cancer Free post – July is always a special month for me as it the month I got told I no longer had cancer. 5 years in the cancer world is a milestone, so I wanted to share a little bit of you journey and how having cancer has simply improved my life. Here’s the post if you haven’t read it yet.

Relay For Life – Everyone’s heard of Race For Life, well I have taken part in Relay For Life and helped raised over £30,000 in our first year. You can read here what the event is all about.

Mix Tape 2016 – I thought this could be something I can revisit every now and then, or have different themes to it. I decided that this mix tape would be a little something for my other half Andy – It is a bunch of songs which means something to me about us – here’s the link

Change my Twitter handle – One thing I learnt from the BloggerTikiParty was that your Twitter handle should really be matching your blog.Mine had always been my nickname, so I changed it to SamsAdventures1

Have 300 views on my blog – This one took a little bit of time to be honest, but I managed to get there with 2 days left in the month – not bad really for little old me with my little blog!

Reach 1,700 tweets – Again, this one I managed to do on the last day of the month. I didn’t want to bombard everyone with crappy tweets, I wanted them to have some sort of interest and meaning where possible. Yes, there are a few re-tweets, but from what I can see about the blogging community is that sharing is caring (even if there is a prize at the end of it!!)

So that’s how my July went and I can’t say how much I’m looking forward to what August has to bring! How did your July go? Was it as you planned?