Friday, 23 December 2011

Festive Friday Fun - Christmas Hits Pop Quiz

Hi everyone,
It's the last blog before Christmas and I hope you're all ready for the the big day.
Today we have a Christmas Hits Pop Quiz. Just like last week all entries will receive 10% off everything al Once you have your answers email and I will send you a discount code for 10% off everything.

1)      What was Christmas Number 1 in 1977?
a.       Mull Of Kintyre / Girls' School (Wings)   
b.      Mary's Boy Child-Oh My Lord (Boney M)
c.       When A Child Is Born (Soleado) (Johnny Mathis)

2)      In what year were The Pet Shop Boys at number 1 with Always on my Mind?
a.       1987      
b.      1986
c.       1988

3)      St Winifred’s School Choir were Christmas number 1 in 1980 with ‘No One Quite Like Grandma’ but where is St Winifred’s School?
a.       Bolton
b.      Chorley
c.       Stockport
4)      Who duets with Shane McGowan on the Pogues’ Fairytale of New York
a.       Kirsty MacColl   
b.      Enya
c.       Michael Bolton

5)      Who wrote Santa Claus is Coming to Town?
a.       Rogers and Hammerstein
b.      Dean Martin
c.       John Frederick Coots and Haven Gillespie
6)      Which other famous Christmas song did Slade keep off the charts top spot in 1973?
a.       Mud – Lonely this Christmas
b.      Wizzard – I Wish it Could be Christmas Everyday
c.       Elton John – Step into Christmas

7)      What is the biggest selling festive song of all time?
a.       Cliff Richard – The Millenium Prayer
b.      Band Aid – Do They Know It’s Christmas Time?
c.       Slade – Merry Christmas Everyone

8)      What is the biggest selling single in UK chart history not to reach number 1?
a.       Step Into Christmas (Elton John)
b.      Last Christmas (Wham)
c.       Fairytale of New York (Pogues & Kirsty MacColl)

9)      What was Cliff Richard's 100th Top 40 hit in the UK?
a.       Saviour’s Day
b.      Mistletoe & Wine
c.       The Millennium Prayer

10)   Who had a hit with Rocking Around the Christmas Tree in 1987?
a.       Shaking Stevens & Bonnie Tyler
b.      Kim Wilde & Mel Smith
c.       Tina Turner & Rod Stewart
So don't forget to email me your answers and you'll get 10% off everything at I look forward to hearing from you.

Have a happy and safe Christmas everyone.
Keep smiling


Wednesday, 21 December 2011


Yesterday I was privileged to play virtual DJ for a Xmas party on Twitter. I had brilliant fun taking people’s requests and playing all the hits from Christmas yesteryear, Christmas Number 1s and floor fillers.
This got me thinking about music and what an important part in plays in our lives. Can you imagine going to a party that doesn’t play music? Do you drive without the radio or a CD playing in the car?
I listen to music more or less all the time. I love it. I also love singing although as my regular readers now know I sound like Cilla Black so not everybody appreciates me singing. Last week’s Friday Fun Blog was an 80s pop quiz and this week’s Friday Fun blog is going to be a Christmas hits pop quiz. Again, because last week was so successful, all entries will get 10% off their next purchase at
As such, included in most of my party boxes is music. The one thing that everybody, without exception, comments on about my milestone parties is that they contain music of different eras and a quiz of the music of the time. This is certainly what goes down well at these parties.
Even from the start of your life, music plays a part in our lives and as such I include a nursery rhyme CD in my Baby Shower party boxes.
So I think we should all keep singing and dancing to music and I think I will start us off with a classic that we can all enjoy. All together now……..Young Man there’s no need to feel down. I said Young Man………………………..
Keep singing my friends

Friday, 16 December 2011

Friday Fun - 80s Pop Quiz

Pull on your leg warmers, rah rah skirt and bat wing jumper, get out your Sony Walkman and vinyl record collection and have a go at our 80s pop quiz. All entries will get 10% off their next purchase at Good luck
1.       Who had a hit in 1986 with `Heartache`?
a.       Pepsi & Shirley
b.      Tears For Fears
c.       T’Pau

2.       Which song contains these lyrics “Buying bread from a man in Brussels. He was six foot four and full of muscles. I said 'do you speak-a my language?' He just smiled and gave me a vegemite sandwich.”
a.       Down Under
b.      The Safety Dance
c.       Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go

3.       Which group's 1st 3 singles went to No.1 in 1984?
a.       Frankie Goes to Hollywood
b.      The Smiths
c.       Wham

4.       Who according to music journalists were the most over rated group of the decade?
a.       Frankie Goes to Hollywood
b.      Five Star
c.       The Smiths

5.       Which song was the 1st UK number 1 to be written, produced, arranged and all instruments played, by the same person?
a.       Paul Young – Love of the Common People
b.      Alison Moyet – Is this Love
c.       George Michael – A Different Corner

6.       What was the bestselling album of the decade?
a.       Thriller – Michael Jackson
b.      Hearts & Bones – Paul Simon
c.       Brothers in Arms - Dire Straits

7.       Which song contains these lyrics “Just remember, if you're the one thing, I can't get enough of. So I tell you one thing, this could be love”
a.       She’s Like The Wind – Patrick Swayze
b.      The Time of my Life – Bill Medley & Jennifer Warner
c.       Hold Me Now – Johnny Logan

8.       Who recorded the album `Like Gangsters’?
a.       Jo Boxers 
b.      Haysi Fantayzee
c.       Bow Wow Wow

9.       What was the bestselling single in 1983?
a.       True – Spandau Ballet
b.      Karma Chamelon - Culture Club
c.       Save your Love – Renee & Renato

10.   Which song contains these lyrics “I gotta take a little time, a little time to think things over. I better read between the lines. In case I need it when I'm older.”
a.       I Want to Know What Love is - Foreigner
b.      What’s Love Got To Do With It? – Tina Turner
c.       Rain or Shine – Five Star

11.   Who put together the group Bow Wow Wow?
a.       Phil Collins
b.      John Lydon
c.       Malcolm Maclaren
12.   Which Group was No.1 in June 1984?
a.       Frankie Goes To Hollywood 
b.      Thompson Twins
c.       Flying Pickets

13.   What was the record label set up by The Specials?
a.       Ghost Town
b.      Coventry
c.       2 Tone

14.   Name a London club that was associated with the New Romantic scene?
a.       Gas
b.      Kinky
c.       Blitz

15.   Which female group had their 13th hit in 1987?
a.       The Bangles
b.      Bananarama
c.       The Pointer Sisters

If you want to enter then send your answers to All entries will receive 10% off their next purchase at You don’t have to get them all right but promise me you won’t cheat and Wikipedia the answers! It’s just a bit of fun so enjoy.
Good luck everyone.

Keep smiling

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

What’s your Party Piece?

I love parties! I can’t tell a lie I love everything about them! So you might say I have the perfect business for me!
I think my love of parties shows in the feedback I get from my party boxes. Yesterday’s customer feedback said “Party box has arrived, and it’s fab!  Thank you so much.” This particular feedback was for something a bit different from my regular products and was a gothic party. I had an absolutely wonderful time thinking up party games and sourcing party supplies for this product. So if you want a gothic party or something a bit different just get in touch and I will put something together for you.
Anyway I digress! Today somebody asked me what my strengths were (we were talking about it from a business point of view) and I said “I do a mean Cilla Black singing impersonation”. This is actually true! In fact when I was a  child I did like to stand up and entertain others with this and other impressions of people.
This got me thinking about what people have as their ‘party pieces’? I would love to know what people have as their own special talents (keep it clean guys!) that would entertain at a party. I’m sure there are lots of talented people out there who can say something much better than singing like Cilla Black and Tina Turner.
Anyway I’ll sign off for now. But tonight Matthew I’m going to be…………………………….Surprise Surprise!!
Keep smiling my friends


Friday, 9 December 2011

Friday Fun - How to make your own piñata

It’s quite a long blog today but with the party season arriving why not make a fantastic piñata with the kids. If you don’t know what a piñata is, it’s a colourful papier mache shape filled with goodies that you hit with a big stick. Blindfolded! We've not made this one in our house yet but we will! Let me know how yours turn out.

You must allow a few days for this process so if you do want to have a go for a party make sure you make well in advance.

1)      Blow up a big balloon,

2)      Tear up newspapers into thin strips (about 3 cms x 12 cms). Put into an old turkey basting tray with a PVA glue mix (mix one part glue to two parts water),

3)      Paste the strips one by one onto the balloon using a brush,

4)      Smooth the strips onto the balloon. Make sure you put lots of layers on as the more layers there are the sturdier it will be (although it will take longer to dry). Leave a hole about the size of a 5 pence piece for balloon popping purposes. Make sure you also leave a hole big enough for inserting sweets but not so big that they might fall out. You are probably better to make this hole in the side of the piñata.

5)      Use white paper for the outer layer as it will make the piñata easier to decorate.

6)      Leave the balloon to dry overnight. This might even take a couple of nights depending on how many layers you have.

7)      When it’s all dry take a pin and prick the balloon. Remove the deflated balloon from the hardened paper shell.

8)      Use the hole that you used for pricking the balloon to put string through to hang the piñata up.

9)      Paint, decorate with crepe paper, glitter, streamers or anything you want.

10)   Fill with lots of sweets and then enjoy the fun.
We would love to see your pictures of your piñatas.

Don’t forget that Life’s A Celebration can provide you with everything you need for a fantastic party. Our party boxes are filled with all the party ideas you need and all the party supplies you want. Always happy to help – just get in touch.
Keep smiling my friends

Wednesday, 7 December 2011

Steep learning curves

Just a short blog today as I am incredibly busy packing Party Boxes and getting myself organised for Christmas (those present won’t wrap themselves).

Somebody asked me yesterday “Would you believe this time last year that you would be doing this?” and my answer is a definite no. This time last year I was neatly ensconced in my role in the Civil Service and looking forward to Christmas. This year I am a self employed on line retailer (but still looking forward to Christmas). It’s amazing that in one year I have begun to climb a very steep learning curve on being an online retailer. This time last year phrases such as SEO, Twitter, Mail Chimp, online marketing, blogging, domain authority would have been a foreign language to me.
Now I would like to make it quite clear that I am by no means an expert on any of these things but in comparison to last year I am a Grand Master! I’m always happy to pass on my limited knowledge so if you want to pick my brains then please feel free to get in touch.

I love having my own business and things are going really well (touch wood). I have shipped my Party Boxes all over the UK and Ireland and the feedback I am getting is amazing. If you have any kind of celebration coming up then please get in touch and if I can help then I certainly will.

Keep smiling my friends.

Friday, 2 December 2011

Friday Fun - Foraging for Christmas Decorations

As Christmas has officially arrived I thought I would make my Friday Fun Blog nice and Christmassy!
So why don’t you wrap up warm and go out foraging for Christmas decorations. It’s easy to do and natural decorations look so much nicer than shop bought items and it’s a great thing for all the family to enjoy.
So every time you go on a walk or to the park don’t forget to pick up decorative bits and bobs. Pick up fir cones – these look great on their own or decorated with paint and glitter, twigs of berried shrubs (rosehips, hawthorn etc) and interestingly shaped pieces of wood and bark that can be painted or covered in glitter.
Arrange your finds in a large vase for a gorgeous table arrangement. Or fill a shallow glass bowl with fir cones, tangerines, cinnamon sticks and glass baubles.
Don’t forget to bring in plenty of holly and other evergreens like ivy or conifer.
Let me know how you get on with this and any pictures of your homemade decorations will get to feature on my blog!
All together now “Deck the Halls with Boughs of Holly Fa La La La La La La La La!!”

Let the festivities begin my friends!



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