It’s June again, and that can only mean one thing. Dads, Grandads and Father figures across the country are wondering and trying to guess what treats they shall receive on Fathers day (June 19th guys!). Some may have subtly hinted (nay begged) for a certain gift whilst others may have dropped no clues at all. Heck! We may have even forgotten all about the day, not realising that Fathers Day is upon us (quite often right up until the very day itself). But don’t panic. After several years of experience panic buying gifts I can safely deliver you this list of last minute speedy buys that will keep any dad happy. Even if you do hand it to him on the following Monday on your way to work. Ooops!
For the Thirsty Dad
Cockburns Special Reserve Port
A real treat for the taste buds from the Douro Valley. Probably one of the most famous ports available and regarded as one of the very best in the world, a glass (or 2) of this special reserve goes down wonderfully after dinner. So if you’re planning on cooking dad a super yummy Fathers Day meal on June 19th make sure you present a bottle of the deep ruby red port to the table to really make dinner extra special. The Cockburns Special Reserve port is very sweet in taste thanks to the sweet flavour of plums, cherries and strawberries, It’s smooth and tangy which is why port really is so unique to those who enjoy a nice glass of the stuff. I find that after a nice hearty meal, I enjoy my port sat on the sofa with a good telly programme and my feet up.
Cockburns is best enjoyed from a large wine glass and served at room temperature, although with this lovely hot weather we have been enjoying I do like my Special Reserve port ever so slightly chilled, perfectly so when kept at the back of the pantry. Cockburns is available from most supermarkets online and in the high street, and is around £12 a bottle but do shop around for best prices. Alc vol: 20%, 75cl and corked.
Oh and FYI its pronounced Coburns. The CK is silent… giggle.
It’s vegan, gluten free and organic! This Czec bottled lager is a wonderfully unique hand-crafted, enjoyable thirst quencher. We tried the Celia Organic, A light beer which has also been specially crafted to have all gluten removed, so if dad is prone to bloating (and other nasty side effects) after a few bevvies Celia won’t upset tummies, ruining that enjoyment of a nice cold beer. The 4.5% alc vol lager is also vegan friendly (unlike many high street beers- boo!) as it uses a silicone filtration method rather than the more traditional isinglass method- which uses fish guts. Celia is also naturally carbonated, and just 136 calories per bottle… that’s even less guilt!
We also put Celia Dark to the test. This densely dark and almost ruby coloured lager has a unique coffee like aroma and carries a nutty caramel flavour. Very special indeed! The Celia Dark is 5.7% alc vol and is also gluten free and vegan like its organic sister. I didn’t get that usual heavy bloated feeling like I usually get after drinking bitter, I assume this is because the beer is gluten free. I have often wondered in the past if I have a slight gluten intolerance but never taken it with much thought. But after drinking Celia compared to other ales there was definitely a huge difference in how I felt after. Nice one! The reason Celia doesn’t cause bloating is because the dark lager is naturally carbonated, for a gentle fizz without the need of artificial carbon dioxide.
Celia is available to purchase online store or Waitrose, Ocardo and quite possibly even your local pub. You can check online via their website where your nearest stockists are.
Get Dad rehydrated with Bobble
Nothing is better than drinking refreshing water in the hot summer weeks. This smart bottle has a special way of making every bottle of water that you drink even better with its ingenious carbon filter which removes chlorine from ordinary tap water, making it taste better and better for your body.
The BPA free Bobble aims to reduce the amount of waste created from buying bottled water, because you can simply filter-as-you-drink ordinary tap water, keeping all of those usual shop purchased bottles out of the bin. The carbon filter can also be removed from the Bobble meaning that you can add tasty fruit into your bottle and infuse on the go. The ‘cage’ that would normally hold the carbon filter, then stops bits of fruit from blocking the mouthpiece. I have been infusing with lemons, kiwis and mangos to experiment with flavours but your options and flavours are endless.
When you order a Bobble you even get a handy little recipe card with some fruity inspiration to work with. Once the mouthpiece is removed from the Bobble the opening is also big enough to fit ice cubes in too, so you can enjoy all of your favourite infusions (and filtered water) ice old, perfect when its hot during outside or during workouts.
The water filter can be used to filter the equivalent of 300 single serve bottles and needs replacing every 4 months, but there is a handy little month-marker so you can select which month your filter will need replacing and keep a close reminder of when this needs to be done.
You can read a full review of the Water Bobble Infuse on my blog found here.
The Bobble Infuse is £14.99 and available from the Bobble website.
For the Speedy Dad
A super cool scooter, gets dad from A-B quickly with no need to fill up on gas. The Frenzy foldable scooter for adults (despite the kids begging for a go) really is one of the most frugal ways dad can get across town, whether they are just popping to the local pub or getting about London for work. Who said scooters are just for kids?!
The Frenzy 205mm scooter easily folds in a matter of seconds and can be slung over a shoulder with ease due to it’s wide shoulder strap and easy to use folding system. When needed for use a simple release button means the scooter can be secured safely quickly and reliably. The scooter is a smooth ride, thanks to it’s decent sized wheels- not so big they look like you’re riding a toddler scooter and not as small as micro-wheels. The scooter also has a handy kick stand, so no need to leave your scooter laying across shop doorways like most teenagers do these days.
The Frenzy arrives ready to go. All you have to do is pop the handle bars into place and unfold the scooter and you are ready to have fun. It literally took around 30 seconds from the scooter being delivered to my house, to my husband whizzing around the block in an excited frenzy. I pinched it to go on the school run the next day and my normal 20 minute walk home took me around 6.5 minutes on the scooter. The scooter easily went very, very fast and I managed to scare myself at how smooth and speedy my ride home was, taking corners like a pro. I may have also been grinning like some crazed child which may have been noted by some of the other school gate mums. Embarrassed? Not at all.
You can real a full review of the Frenzy scooter on my blog here.
The Frenzy 205mm scooter is available through Skates.com and is £89.95 including next day delivery. Dads will love reliving their childhood scooter days, and also knowing they can ditch the car for a far more fun method of transportation, especially if it means getting to their work meeting with style and speed.
Gillette Fusion® Proshield™ with Flexball™ razor
A busy man doesn’t have forever to spend shaving each morning. He needs to be out of the door and on the go ASAP, so reducing annoying time in the bathroom shaving is a must. The all new Gillette Fusion Proshield will get dad out of the door much quicker each day before work.
The 5 bladed razor has clever flexball technology, meaning the razor glides and contours smoothly against the face making sure that nearly every hair is shaved with the first attempt. With special Proshield™ lubrication technology, before and after the blades shields the skin while they shave, meaning less irritation and upset skin. There is also a precision trimmer located on the back of the razor head for accurate edging.
My husband was awake at the crack of dawn this week and decided to put the Gillette Proshield razor to the test. James has quite thick facial hair that grows fast and his skin can quite often be left irritated from shaving because regular razors have to work hard to cut his stubble back to smooth. He felt that the razor did exactly as it said on the packaging; no tugging and the razor glided over his skin with absolute ease. The razor also feels quite heavy and well made and the flexball meant that the razor moved easily and no awkward movements of the wrist were needed to capture every hair. Winner!
The Gillette Proshield with Flexball razor is available in many hightstreet chemists and supermarkets such as Boots, Sainsburys and Superdrug. The price does vary so do shop around (normal price is around £12) and look for the best offers!
For the DIY dad
Sugru FIX THAT THING!
Sugru is the future in my opinion. We like being frugal and fixing what we can rather than buying something new to replace what ever it is that’s busted, and a mouldable glue that sticks just about anything to anything is a winner. Sugru is a soft putty that can be moulded around broken wires or cables, fix broken baskets, replace snapped coat hooks and while its soft can be worked easily but after 24 hours its sets to whatever shape you created. The Sugru actually turns to rubber so you can really adapt, design and fix anything. Oh and it can even be used on fabric! Make non-slip dots for socks or reinforce knees on work trousers.
Many of us have experienced the dreaded broken phone charger situation. Sugru can fix that. Just soften the putty between your fingers, mould the Sugru over the wire covering the broken bit, and let it sit for a while to harden off. It remains flexible so the wire still has movement but covers the dangerous exposed wires, and reinforces the existing wire so your charger is back to its usual safe, working self without the need for forking out lots of pennies buying a new one (or having a trip to A&E).
Our potato peeler broke last week. Now for most, a quick trip to the shops would provide a brand new one. Except I have a problem. I literally CANNOT use any other peeler than the one we have. Trust me I’ve tried at various other folks houses, we even purchased new peelers over the years to replace the battered old one we currently use, but nothing worked as well as my old favourite. Oh and one more thing, I’m slightly sentimental over the peeler too. It was my granddads and he had owned it since he married my nan, 70 years ago. I grew up using that peeler so that’s probably why it’s the only one I can actually use. Anyway, it broke big time…
I got the Sugru warmed up in between my palms, squidged it over the broken part, smoothed it out and left it to set. 24 hours later I have my trusty peeler back in action. The Sugru feels sturdy and holds the broken part really well. And now I’m back to peeling potatos with ease… is this something I should really be happy about?
A pack of 8 coloured Sugru packs cost £12.99 and are available through the Sugru website.
Light switch timer.
Is your dad always trotting off around the world on holiday or taking the camper van on long weekends away? He may worry about the security of his home (making you ‘pop by’ 10x a day just to check for burglars). A useful and easy to fit automatic light switch timer by Switched On Products lets you set a timer to turn your lights on and off, whether you’re out of the house on holiday or just coming home late when its dark outside.
The light switch is super easy to install. Simply unscrew the switch guard by a few turns of the screwdriver and the cradle of the timer simply slots behind the guard, then tighten up the screws again. Insert 2 AA batteries into the times are sit into the timer cradle that you just attached to the light. program in when you want the timer to go on and off and away you go! We found it so easy to fit, and we timed that it took around 3 minutes to do… but this was our first time fitting it. If we had to do it again, I bet it would take under a minute. Super easy, no wiring needed and we didn’t didn’t develop any DIY sweats.
The timer had a clear digital screen that is easy to read, simple buttons for programming (I’m terrible with tech and gadgets but even I managed to programme it in seconds with minimal looking at the instructions!) and a handy thermometer that tells you the room temperature. Something I am often wondering, especially at the moment when it is so hot!
The timer can be programmed to turn on at any time on any day, or you can ‘bulk programme’ to work over week days, just weekends or both. You don’t have to programme every day of the week one at a time if you need the timer to kick in daily, there’s an option that lets you set mon-fri, or Saturday and Sunday all in one simple step. The whole set-up is faultless and is easy for anyone to work out, even those golden oldies who often struggle with fiddly gadgets.
The Light Switch Timer has even been accredited and is a recommended purchase by the Official Police Security Initiative. You can buy the timer direct from Switched On Products website for just £29.99 and will even be posted out to you for next day delivery.
Dads who want to give a gift too
Stand4 Socks are not only make a great gift for Dad but for every pair you buy you are giving someone else an amazing gift too. These high quality, colourful socks help clear landmines, vaccinate children, plant trees and even give kids an education!
Each pair of socks, support a different cause. You can either choose to buy individual pairs for the causes you choose or buy packs of 7 or 10 pairs to support a load of causes at once, depending on your budget. Each pair are designed with beautiful colours and patterns, unlike any other socks you will ever find, they are also snuggly and soft being made from great quality materials. Each pair show a little logo showing which cause it supports. For example the socks (beautifully modelled) worn by my husband supports Maternal Health, displaying a little logo that looks like a beautiful baby bump. While my hubby strides around for maternal health, I keep my tootsies warm and support eliminating world hunger. Not many people can say that their socks are changing the world.
Here’s a list of what causes you could be supporting by buying dad a pair of Stand4 Socks:
- Child health
- Clear landmines
- Enterprise and development
- Gender equality
- Improve maternal health
- Measles Vaccinations
- Plant Trees
- Provide education
- Syrian refugee crisis
The socks vary in price from £6.99 to £11.99 and are available through the Stand4 Socks website.
Ball Brand Preserving kit
Is your dad great in the kitchen? Does he grow his own fruits and veg and have a habit of storing it all over the house in beautiful jars? Does he always give you a jar of home produce every Christmas, Birthday, loss of a tooth?
Ball are a specialist brand in home preserving and they have lots of great products to help that special man in your life bringing the fruits of his labour from the garden and into the pantry. With their super easy recipes, no fuss preserving jars and even a brilliant book all about preserving (not just through jams and chutneys but also freezing, pickling and even dehydrating) they will get dad making beautiful preserves not just for himself but for family and friends too.
Ball preserving jars are unique and beautiful. Each jar has pretty patterns, and the 490ml jars have a lovely picture of fruit moulded into the glass. The smaller 135ml jelly jars have a gorgeous textured quilted glass, that looks stunning on any pantry shelf. The lids are super special too. They work as a 2 part system, the disc which sits on top of the jar and is the part which creates the safe vacuum seal, and the band which locks the seal in place and is used for opening and closing of the jar lid. The system works exceptionally well ensuring the highest quality and freshness for your home made preserves. Each pack of jars comes with a handy booklet that has a simple ‘quick start’ guide and includes a few recipes too, to help you get started. A pack of six 490ml jars cost £11.99 and the smaller 135ml jelly jars are just £4.49 for a pack of 4. These jars can be purchased directly through the Ball Fresh Preserving online shop. The Ball Book Of Home Preserving is jam packed (pun totally intended) with over 100 years worth of info that you will need to start preserving your fresh garden stock. The paperback has 200 pages of clear photographs, and illustrations to really get you excited by what you could be making. The book covers everything from what you need to start your preserving journey, loads of recipes, tips and advice, stunning photographs and problem solving issues.
Ball have sets with absolute beginners in mind too. The Ball Home Preserving Starter Kit has everything needed to get started on dads preserving journey all in one package and is just £19.99. For a full review on the Ball Brand jars, Jam setting mix and Preserving book you can click here and I even have a super easy Rhubarb Jam recipe for you to discover.
And finally, for the super smooth dad
Hydro 5 and Hydro 5 Sensitive from Wilkinson Sword
More men than ever are shaving less and today, almost half are choosing not to pick up their razor to avoid a common battle with irritation. With 125 years under their belt in razor production, Wilkinson Sword has unveiled the revolutionary new, Wilkinson Sword Hydro 5, engineered to offer improved skin protection whilst shaving. My husband has thick facial hair that seems to go from super smooth to sea-captainly over night, its also dark quite stubborn to completely remove in any short amount of time.
The Hydro 5 has 5 blades that work together to create an easy, fast and smooth shave for even though with a stubborn facial hair as my husband.
As well as the blades the Hydro 5 also has unique Hydrating Gel Pools lasting up to twice as long as other lubrication strips on the market, the gel pools deliver 40 per cent less friction than any other razor brand. The gel ensures a super-thick coverage to spread evenly across the face, leaving the skin feeling protected through every stroke and hydrated for up to one hour after each shave – something a conventional strip can’t do. The entire design of the original version of the razor has been redefined for an even closer and more comfortable shave. Rather than struggling to reach difficult contours of the face – with a simple flick of the thumb – the hydrating gel pools flip back to reveal five blades that deliver parallel precision and control. The guard bars and reduced blade span have been redesigned to improve comfort, safety and prevent skin pinching. The ergonomic handle gives the razor a full range of motion fitting perfectly in the hand and providing guys with a more comfortable hold and control whilst shaving.
Jay put the razor to the test after just 3 days of not shaving. He found the shave smooth, and tug free with no nasty nicks or post shaving irritation, which is something that he quite often struggles with, especially when using cheap razors.
The Hydro 5 is £9.99 and is available direct from the Wilkinson Sword website or it can also be found in most good chemists such as Superdrug and Boots.
I hope these ideas give you one less thing to panic about, and remember guys you only have until June 19th to get those last minute gifts ready!
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