*Disclaimer* – this is not a sponsored post. No money or services has changed hands in exchange for this post.
*This post contains Amazon affiliate links. That means if you click and buy something off of Amazon I get like, £.0.05 commission.
It’s completely ok to be in favour of current lockdown measures, and also feel for small businesses that are getting no help. Social media and the media in general have tried to make this a “two opposing sides” thing. You’re either against all of the lockdowns and measures that are currently crippling businesses, or you think that lockdown is necessary and don’t care about small businesses. Well, that isn’t the case for the majority, and it isn’t the case for me. I’m pro “absolutely anything that will stop more people dying” but I am also pro “the government doing more to help small businesses”. Seeing as I am not the government or the Prime Minister (YET), the only way I can help some of the wonderful small businesses in Essex is by creating a post encouraging you all to use them on my It’s More Fun in Your 30s Blog.
AvaGrace Designs is a local business close to my heart because it was started by one of my school friends. She was always one of those people you just KNEW would go far in life. AvaGrace specialise in bespoke balloon design, party planning, baby bouquets and seasonal products like the cute Valentine’s pyjama’s in the main picture for this blog post. One of the reasons I wanted to use this picture is that is was taken by another school friend, and the model is another one. So nice to see everyone 15 years on from school everyone is still close and supportive of each other’s ventures.
If you want any more proof of just how stunningly beautiful all of AvaGrace’s designs are, just pop over to the AvaGrace Designs Instagram page. You won’t be disappointed. I know they get booked up VERY quickly and they are still open for business under current guidance. Get in touch with them to make someone’s lockdown birthday a bit more bearable.
Ellis Louise Photography
I’ve got an unlimited amount of respect for people that are talented at photography. I got a GoPro for Christmas and I paid £6.99 for a book about it in WH Smith and I still just about know which way to point it (and don’t get me started on the accessory kit that looks like it’s made up of 50% sex toys and 50% baking tools). Not only is Ellis just genuinely talented as a photographer, she has also completed the impossible: she has actually made ME look at a baby and think it’s cute. Ellis is the one that shot the beautiful photo which is the featured image for this post. You can check out her Ellis Louise Photography page on Facebook if you want to see her work for yourself. Alternatively, you can also look her up on Instagram.
R & R Carpets
R&R Carpets are offering a click and collect service at the moment, and they can take the payment over the phone, so it is completely contactless and safe. I can vouch personally for R&R Carpets as I used them in the summer to buy some underlay for my huge swimming pool. Incredibly helpful and friendly staff, I would highly recommend their services to anyone. They have also had the most brilliant idea of putting samples outside the shop so that you can have a look and take some away to see if it goes with your existing décor. You can get all of their contact details from their Facebook page.
Grotbags are another company I can personally recommend to you because they are my cleaners. Sarah and her girls are one of the most efficient and organised services I have ever used. They always come on time, fully prepared and ALWAYS wear masks. They also clean the house to a level of perfection which supersedes anything I initially imagined from a hired cleaner. When I first toyed with the idea of getting a cleaner I never realised how life-changing it will be, and trust me, they are not THAT expensive. You can look up Grotbags on Facebook and see some “before and after” pictures for yourself.
Sparkling Jewellery have always been my “go to” place for any jewellery needs. I have been buying from them for years. You’ll recognise their “Two Coin” necklace which has been worn by many a local celebrity like Denise Van Outen and the rest of their jewellery is outstanding. Sparkling Jewellery have even made some personalised bits for me including a bangle that isn’t very complimentary about our local train service. With Valentine’s Day coming up, I’m sure all of you wonderful men reading this are getting someone super special a special something. So visit the Sparkling Jewellery website to see for yourself how beautiful everything it is.
It doesn’t matter if you maybe have some more time now because of the lockdown, prepping your own food is BORING. However, looking after our body is more important now than ever. I used to think food prep services were just something avid gym-goers used, but now I realise if you use a service like Prepyourself you get so much better quality than you would if you made the meals yourself. One of the bigger issues I have myself with meal prep is thinking about what to have so there is not too much repetition. There’s only SO MUCH chicken and rice one will eat. Well, Preopyourself have some amazing choices like peanut chicken (pictured below), Jerk chicken, and steak. If you want to see some examples, please check out their Instagram page.
Frankie’s Immense Scents
Another one I’ve actually tried so I can officially recommend these products to you. Frankie started on her Scentsy journey a while back and she has not stopped growing her business. If you don’t know about Scentsy, well, they kind of do what they say on the tin. It’s a great time to put in an order, because if you are stuck inside the house because of lockdown, it’s more pleasant when it smells nice, right? You can check out some of the products on Frankie’s Scentsy Instagram page. The warmers are so much safer than candle warmers and they basically last forever, so worth a little investment.
CH Handmade Designs
I became aware of this company through my Mum, and their bag designs are amazing. Because I was still under the impression I would get a holiday this year, I got CH Handmade Designs to make me a lovely travel wallet for my passport etc for my next trip. If you want to see how lovely all of the designs are for yourself, check out their Instagram.
Kings of Meat
I don’t know if you all agree with me here, but meat from the butchers is absolutely SUPERIOR to meat from the supermarket. I do worry that shops like butchers are going to become a dying breed, but if you buy from them we can stop that happening. Kings of Meat pride themselves on great quality cuts(locally sourced). They are currently offering FREE DELIVERIES on anything over £25. Check out their Facebook page to see what they have in stock.
Pony Pals Club
Becca West Therapy
A lot of businesses have had to adapt and change because of the current circumstances. Therapy is one of the services that can luckily move online during the lockdowns. Becca West Therapy offers a safe, calm, and relaxing atmosphere to learn different ways of how to love yourself. A lot of people will be feeling the extra strain of the pandemic, so if you do want to book in with Becca, contact her via the contact details on her Facebook page.
I don’t know about anyone else, but I find it such a cheek that grass still grows in the winter. It is a bit cold to be getting the lawnmower out so the best bet is to pay someone else to do your garden. Here are the services they offer (taken from their website):
- Landscaping – The cornerstone of everything we do, with a design-led approach to landscaping we can transform gardens and outdoor areas into incredible, striking environments.
- Fencing – From high fencing, for more private gardens, to stylish perimeters for your outdoor areas, we have plenty of options for every customer.
- Decking – Ideal for enjoying during summer, or adding to your commercial property for a breakout area, we install stylish, long-lasting decking in Basildon, Billericay and Wickford.
- Turfing – Ensuring your green areas remain healthy, luscious, and practical for the foreseeable, we can replace turf or add it to new gardens and green areas.
- Artificial grass – As a low-maintenance, high performance alternative to the real thing, the modern artificial grass we install looks and feels just like the real thing.
- Patios – With a range of options available, simply get in touch if you’re looking to create a patio area from scratch, or give your existing patio a contemporary makeover.
- Paving – For your pathways, patios, and more, we adapt your land to make the very most of long-lasting, low-maintenance and low-cost paving slabs.
- Trees and hedge trimming – Also attending to your trees, hedges and shrubs, we can prune your greenery to perfection throughout the year.
- Garden maintenance – For day to day maintenance, or for an occasional spruce up of the garden, leave it up to us. We remove waste and rubbish, and make everything tidy, clean and functional.
- Pond cleaning – Removing build-ups of algae, debris, and waste, we can help you to keep your pond clean for longer, improving the health of plants and fish in the water.
- Installation of ponds – To add a live water feature to your garden, leave it up to the experts. We will prepare your land, keep it watertight, and create a pond you can enjoy for years to come.
Visit the Eden Services website for more information.
Amelia Willam offers personalised newborn baby gifts like pyjamas, onesies and sleepsuits. The age range is from 0 months to 2 years, so even if you are buying something for a slightly older child, you’ll be able to find something on the Amelia William website.
If anything is going to cheer you up in lockdown, it has to be cakes. Wonderland do not just do amazing birthday cakes, they also do afternoon tea. You can visit the Wonderland cakes Facebook page to see some creations, the unicorn cake is incredible!
Local Plumbers 247
Local Plumbers 247 are a local plumbers available 247 for all your plumbing needs from pipes to boilers to cookers to taps to bathrooms no job to big or small. The also do not have a “call out” charge. As per the government guidelines, you are allowed to have professionals in your house if they are there to work.
If you are going out of your way to but flowers for someone, then you are at least want some high quality ones. Flower Paradise do flowers for all occasions and they are all beautiful.
The Bread Shop at Stacey’s Corner
Traditional bakery and sandwich bar which has been established for over 45 years! Now under new management and fully refurbished. They have a “clock and collect” option meaning you can order by phone then go and pick up your products for takeaway only. They also do decent coffee which stops you from needing to go into the town centre. Have a look at their Facebook page to see all of the goodies they do.
PL Tresor make beautiful, artistic pieces that would bring a bit of glamour to any home. They currently have Jelly Baby Box Frames, coasters, notebooks and pens and keyrings for sale on their Facebook page. I think the beautiful photos speak for themselves!
Love to know your thoughts guys?