Dining out at The Oaks

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Dining out at The Oaks Opened in July 2019, part of The White Brasserie Company, in the heart of beautiful Highcliffe in Dorset. I spent most of my childhood in Highcliffe and have seen the venue change hands many times. I even bought a BMW from the pub car park many years ago, but probably less said about that the better!  It’s so lovely to see the building now standing proud in the village as a wonderful meeting, drinking and … Read More

Doing a Happy Dance

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I can’t believe it’s been over 7 months since I last posted on here. So much has changed and happened. The worrying times aren’t over yet, and new things have become normal things; wearing face masks and keeping our distance. One thing that kept me going has been Sand and Seagulls orders. At times when you couldn’t see loved ones, I was able to send them your gifts. Or as a treat to yourself, a little pick me up. The … Read More

A staycation on the beach with Bournemouth Beach Lodges

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Bournemouth Beach Lodges website describes the lodges as an enchanting overnight stay overlooking beautiful beaches in a tranquil location. And this is definitely true! We were lucky enough to be invited to spend the weekend at the beach lodges at the end of February and we had the best time. We had a dog friendly lodge too so Dolly our Pug came along for the adventure as well. Arriving on a wet and windy Friday afternoon we easily found a … Read More

That Friday Feeling (with Weird Fish clothing)

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That Friday Feeling (with Weird Fish clothing) Last April I introduced you to Weird Fish clothing and the gorgeous Etta striped jersey dress Just like me, Weird Fish live for that Friday feeling. The weekend gives us time to unwind and be ourselves; which is so true and so important when we lead such busy lives. And when I saw their Shelley Striped Crew Neck Sweatshirt I knew it was the piece for me. The perfect piece to help brighten … Read More

Life in slippers with Gumbies

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Working from home slippers are my work shoes, and I’ve recently found my favourite pair. My navy and pink outback slippers from Gumbies The best thing about them is they’re made from approximately 8 recycled plastic bottles, from post consumer waste to produce. Since Gumbies launched their slippers in 2017 they have helped recycle more than 500,000 bottles; which is amazing. Not only are the slippers a fab fit, super comfy and vegan friendly they’re helping to keep plastics out … Read More

What’s In My Bag

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I think it’s part of human nature to be a bit nosy, I can definitely hold my hands up and say I’m nosy. So I thought I’d show you what’s in my bag. I can’t go out without my bag, and times when I do, like on the school run, it feels really odd not to have it! So here’s what’s in mine! Well starting with the actual bag itself. I have a faux leather backpack from ASOS that my … Read More

Bournemouth at Christmas Time

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I love Bournemouth , but at Christmas, I love it even more. And this years Christmas Tree Wonderland is amazing, magical and spectacular. And best of all, it’s free.  We were kindly invited to experience the wonderland a couple of weekends ago. And we had the best time. We started right down on the beach front because I love a beach hut, especially a Christmas themed beach hut.  The boys then got to do something they’d never done before, ice … Read More

Eco Swap October Challenge

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October Eco Swaps Challenge Blog

Every year, 8 million metric tons of plastics enter our ocean on top of the estimated 150 million metric tons that currently circulate our marine environments.  The average time a plastic bag is used for is 12 minutes. I could write a whole blog full of statistics and reasons why single use plastic should be banned and why we all need to be thinking more about the impact our choices are having on their earth. But, I think a lot … Read More

Getting washed without water (with Pump’d Up)

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pump'd up washing without water

One of my initial thoughts when getting prepared for my first festival in 20 years, the Big Feastival 2019, was how am I going to wash? A quick google revealed the chance of a shower was unlikely. But that’s when I discovered Pump’d Up a brand which launched earlier this year, and have created a revolutionary cleansing range that provides brilliant cleansing – without water!     I was kindly gifted a Festival Wash Kit, which includes a Hand Sanitiser, Shampoo Foam … Read More

Beach games for little people (and sometimes big people)

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beach games for kids

As a Mum of three boys I know only too well that children definitely didn’t get the memo that grown ups love to sit on the beach quietly,relax and sunbath. So with the summer holidays in full swing, I have come up with five beach game ideas that will help keep the little people in your life entertained at the seaside. You might even be able to sneak in a sit down in the meantime.    Beach Treasure Hunt   … Read More

Running The Samarathon

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Every six seconds the Samaritans respond to a call for help. Someone is at the end of the phone 24 hours a day, 365 days a week.  If you’re feeling low, struggling to cope, they can help. No judgement, no pressure. Suicide is the leading cause of death among young people aged 20-34 years in the UK and it is considerably higher in men. In the UK men are three times as likely to take their own life than women. … Read More

A Wonderful Family Day Out

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knoll house hotel lunch

You may remember my blog Afternoon Tea With A View in April, where my husband and I visited The Knoll House Hotel for afternoon tea. Well, we were very kindly invited back last week. But as a whole family this time for lunch. And we really had the best day. We were so lucky with the weather again, and Studland in Dorset is just stunning when the sun shines. It was wonderful to walk the same corridors that Enid Blyton … Read More

Exfoliate, Renew and Hydrate (with Living Sea Therapy)

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living sea therapy

I wash my hands a lot, whether it be after a nappy change, whilst cooking dinner or after polishing a piece of jewellery before it goes in the post.   Because of this my hands are very dry. I’ve used lots of hand beauty products in the past, but either found them too greasy, too fragrant or to contain ingredients such as alcohol or nasty parabens which I want to avoid. When I discovered Living Sea Therapy I had that … Read More

Afternoon Tea With A View

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knoll house afternoon tea

The Knoll House Hotel, established in 1931 is a traditional Dorset hotel, and quintessentially English, full of charm and history. Situated at Studland in Dorset, it’s a little hidden gem with breathtaking views over Studland Beach and beyond. We were kindly invited for Afternoon Tea, and I couldn’t wait to visit the hotel I’d often driven past, and dreamt it to be the perfect coastal retreat. And I wasn’t disappointed, steeped in history with a modest charm, the family and … Read More

Visiting South Devon For The First Time (With Coast & Country Cottages)

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Sunbathing by the beach

132 miles from where we live, just outside of Bournemouth; is the beautiful and popular seaside resort town of Salcombe in South Devon. A few weeks ago, we were lucky enough to visit thanks to Coast & Country Cottages Arriving on Saturday 23rd March, we enjoyed three nights staying at Dory Cottage a traditional and stunning three storey cottage right in the centre of Salcombe. It was the perfect base for our family – and with it’s coastal decor, well … Read More

Stepping into the weekend (with Weird Fish clothing)

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Etta Striped Jersey Dress

Just like me, Weird Fish live for that Friday feeling. The weekend gives us time to unwind and be ourselves; which is so true and so important when we lead such busy lives. The Weird Fish story began in 1993 with a simple mission, to produce well priced, well made and distinctive clothes that become instant feel good favourites. So when they asked if I’d like to pick a piece from their summer new styles, I couldn’t wait to get … Read More

Dreaming Of Beach Huts

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wells-next-the-sea-beach-huts

Brightly coloured beach huts help make the British coast wonderful. They go together with ice creams and sandcastles. And of course the unreliable British weather! It is estimated that today there are at least 20,000 beach huts along our shores. Previously they were known as bathing machines where beachgoers, including King George III, wheeled down to the shoreline to protect their modesty as they entered the sea. The wheeled huts remained relatively unchanged in appearance from their introduction in the … Read More

Marine Conservation Society – We’re members

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Marine Society Fact Sheets

Sand and Seagulls is proud to be a member of the Marine Conservation Society. The society started in 1983 in a garden shed in Hertfordshire. And their vision is for sea’s full of life – seas and coasts where nature flourishes and people thrive. Their mission is to to drive political, cultural and social change for healthy seas and coasts that support abundant marine wildlife, sustainable livelihoods and enjoyment for all. And this is something we strongly support too. When … Read More

Did you know?

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Beach couple cake topper

Whether you believe in new years resolutions or not, the start of a new year always brings thoughts and reflections. Whether it be about the previous year and what we achieved, or your plans, hopes and dreams for the new year ahead. I therefore thought the first Sand and Seagulls blog of 2019 would be the perfect place to reflect on how far Sand and Seagulls has come since it’s launch in 2013. And introduce you to my business if … Read More

By the sea all worries wash away

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camber sands

I’m a strong believer that the gorgeous seaside towns of England aren’t just perfect for summer holidays, but beautiful places to visit and enjoy all year round. And this is certainly true of Camber Sands in East Sussex. At the beginning of this month I was lucky enough to stay in the beautiful Blue Beach Hut Chalet owned by Emma within the Camber Sands Holiday Park. We had a two night stay, and when I say we; myself and my … Read More

Blue Space – Guest Blog

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deckchairs on the beach

Hello, my name is Gemma and I am a thlassophile. There. I’ve said it. I’ve ‘fessed up to my addiction. And there’s no cure for my daily fix but I don’t need one because my addiction is the sea. It is my drug of choice and I can’t get enough of it. It started years ago when I was a young child and watched an episode of The Perishers. I remember watching in amazement and wonder as the cartoon characters … Read More

Great British Beach Clean

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the great british beach clean

On UK beaches the amount of litter found has doubled in the past 20 years. And litter in general has increased by 135% since 1994, with plastics increasing by a staggering 180%. (correct as at Sep 2018) The Marine Conservation Society is the UK’s leading marine charity. They work to ensure our seas are healthy, pollution free and protected. Our seas are under immense pressure: too many fish are being taken out, too much rubbish is being thrown in and … Read More

Glass Of The Sea

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seaglass collection in our hands

If only the seaglass we find could tell us a story… Where has it come from? Where was it made? What did it used to be? We’ll never know the answer to these questions and I think that’s what makes it magical, it’s full of history and untold stories. Like shells, but harder to find; finding a piece of seaglass is like a gift from the ocean, tumbled by nature. Looking for it is like a treasure hunt, and can … Read More

This summer’s must have dresses – Ebay vs Mango

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ebay and mango dress being modelled by me

A stripy, light, floaty and flattering dress is a must have for ladies this summer. My Instagram feed seems to be full of them, and with the high temperatures the heat wave has brought, it feels an age since I last wore trousers and socks. As a 34 year old Mum of three who works from home; I don’t need a mix of work clothes and home clothes anymore. And, I don’t tend to buy clothes too often. But when … Read More

Sand and Seagulls is Five!

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5-year-birthday-celebration-balloon

 We all say from time to time ‘Wow, time really flies’ or, ‘Time goes too fast’. This is true of Sand and Seagulls. I can’t quite believe Sand and Seagulls has been running for five years. Set up in the summer of 2013 whilst on maternity leave with my eldest Rudy, Sand and Seagulls has come such a long way. There’s been a few quiet patches, when other areas of my life have taken over. But I have never closed … Read More

Beach Hut Shed – No. 1984

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beach hut in our garden

It’s been a dream of mine for as long as I can remember to own a beach hut. Sadly it’s very very likely that this will forever remain a dream. With prices for a beach hut where we live in Dorset starting from £60k and going all the way up to the staggering heights of £280k!! So one sunny Wednesday afternoon I had a lightbulb moment. Why not create my very own ‘Beach Hut Shed’ in my very own back … Read More

My Nine Cups Of Tea

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My Nine Cups Of Tea

This is an unusually deep one from me, but a photo I wanted to take and share its little story. Kelly over at @kelly_thebeesknees on Instagram had been talking about that content feeling and popping the kettle on. I am a big tea drinker and love the way having a cuppa can bring people together. A common love of tea and reason to connect for a short while. So; 9 cups of tea…who did I make them for? And why? … Read More

Too many striped tops? – Never!

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big pile of striped tops

I recently shared a photograph of my striped top collection on Instagram (@sandandseagulls) with the caption; ‘You’ll never hear me say the words “I have too many stripy tops!” – And I was definitely not alone. With comments such as “This looks like my wardrobe” , “I have a whole drawer just for my stripy Breton tops” and “I’m rarely in anything else” Why do we love them so much? – I think it’s because they can easily be dressed … Read More

“I don’t want the fish to eat my golf ball”

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boscombe pier

“I don’t want the fish to eat my golf ball” In May 2016 mini golf arrived at Boscombe Pier, Dorset, but with a fishy twist. The pier which originally opened in 1889 is described as “”Well worth a visit” , “simple but brilliant” and “A beautiful place to be” on Tripadvisor. Boscombe pier is only 20 minutes from where we live, but it isn’t somewhere we visit very often. I think Boscombe seafront can often be overlooked, by both locals … Read More