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Monday, 28 September 2015

Autumn Bucket List...

I've never done one of these before but I saw a similar post on someones blog last week and I really liked the idea. I love autumn, I've been waiting for it for ages and I've been pinning pictures of autumn and winter on Pinterest for months!

There are a few things I definitely want to do this Autumn so I thought I would do a little bucket list and maybe come back to it later on in the year to see what I actually managed to do! 
All images taken from Pinterest.
  • Carve a pumpkin - I can't remember ever doing this and me and George definitely haven't together so I think it would be a really nice thing to do this year.
  • Decorate the flat - I want to make the living room so cosy for autumn this year, I want to buy new blankets and a cosy rug and I want candles everywhere! I would also love to put some halloween decorations up to as I love seeing it all in the shops and I really want to go all out with everything this year. 
  • Buy autumn and winter clothes - I wear the same sort of things all the time just because I need simple and comfy clothes for work but I'm getting a bit bored and I know how cold its going to be on reception over the next few months as people are always going in and out the door and it is freezing! I want to stock up on some cosy jumpers and fluffy socks and maybe get some new boots and a jacket so I really am prepared for autumn and winter. I could also really do with some new things for when we go to Manchester in November as I know it will be so cold then. 
  • Buy Autumn Scented Candles - I don't really have any season specific type candles but I love it when Yankee Candle have their Fireside Treats one, and they've got one out now called Witches Brew which is a halloween one and I had a look it at a few weeks ago in the shop and it smells amazing, so different to any others I've got and just perfect for this time of year. 
  • Start Christmas Shopping - I'm so excited to start getting presents for people, I wanted to start a few weeks ago but I stopped myself, when we go to Manchester in November I want to get as many as we can then, the christmas market has some really unique things so I want to get some stuff from there and they do amazing chocolate and sweets! I'm hoping to get as much as I can then and when we get back hopefully we will only need to get a few extra things and then I can start on Georges presents!
What are you looking forward to this Autumn? 

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Thursday, 24 September 2015

Weekend Summary #5 - The Best Chocolate and Me Time...

I feel like I've had no time for blogging over the last few weeks, I've been so busy at work and I just literally am asleep all the time! I seriously couldn't wait for this last weekend to arrive as I just wanted to relax and stay in bed! Though I did need to get quite a lot done around the flat, it just builds up and builds up everyday and we just never have time for anything at the moment.

On Saturday I literally spent hours blogging. As I haven't had much time lately, I was running low on blog posts and I always like to have a decent amount ready to go just in case I get into one of these situations. I managed to get about 5 or 6 done and even though I never normally post one on a Saturday, I thought I would this week just because there hadn't been any others. It was a Next Homeware Wishlist in case you haven't seen! Apart from that I really didn't do much, when George got in from work we settled down to watch The X Factor with some Terrys Chocolate Orange Minis, my favourite!
On Sunday I woke up feeling so ill for some reason, i've had such bad backache the last few days and I felt like I was coming down with a cold, which is not what we need with work been so busy at the moment. So I just wanted to relax, I had a lovely bath and I painted my nails. I also did a little bit of baking, everyone needs chocolate when they're ill and it definitely made me feel a little better. I made some Tiffin, as you know I love making this and I also made some Double Chocolate Brownies.

What did you get up to this weekend?

Previous Post - Next Homeware Wishlist.

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Saturday, 19 September 2015

Next Homeware Wishlist...

So as I haven't had chance to put many blog posts out this past week, I thought I would do one today and what better than a homeware wishlist! 

I absolutely love Next for homeware, I've mentioned it on my blog so many times and I love it when they have their huge sales on every so often, I just want to buy everything. I said a few weeks ago I really want to get the flat finished by christmas this year, we are so close to finishing with the kitchen and living room, there are just a few final things we need and we've decided to completely change the bedroom so we are looking at new furniture and I need loads of new candles and accessories obviously!
All images taken from Next.
The main thing I want to get for the living room is a mirror for above the main sofa. I've wanted one for ages but we just haven't got round to it but I think this Camden Mirror is just perfect, it's exactly what I've been looking for and will match everything else in the living room so well. It's £75 which to be honest I don't think is bad for a mirror, they can be so expensive so I think this is actually a really good price and I know we would keep it for years. The last thing I want for the kitchen is a bit of a random one but its a new dish-drainer, we have a plastic one that was here when we moved in but it just gets dirty really quickly and I see so many nice metal ones all the time and I really want one. I love the Black Single Tier Metal Drainer for £16.

A few things I want for the bedroom, aside from new wardrobes and drawers are some new candle holders. We have some tealights on the window sill but I haven't found any nice holders for them until now, I did see some in Primark a few weeks ago but there was only 1 left and I didn't want to take the risk of buying 1 and then them never been in stock again! I love this set of 3 Bubble Glass Tea Lights and I think £12 is a great price as they seem really good quality and look so pretty. I think these would look so nice in the window. Also for the window I want to get a little vase with fake flowers in like this Mauve Peony Jam Jar which is £10. I think it adds a nice touch to the bedroom and is something a little different, I love peonies too. When we first moved in I got something similar to this for the bathroom windowsill and it's seriously one of the best things I've ever bought, I absolutely love it and I know I can use it in other rooms too one day. As it's getting cold now, I love to change up the bedding around autumn and winter time. I always seem to look for the christmassy sets and I love this Red and Grey Check Bed Set, I really want it so I can put it on in December!

Do you love shopping for homeware bits? Would you buy anything on this wishlist?

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Monday, 14 September 2015

Gingerbread Cupcakes Recipe...

When it comes to Christmas and baking, one of the only things I think of is Gingerbread and as we're now in September, I think its acceptable to start thinking about the festive time of year! I'm not too brilliant at Gingerbread men so I wanted to have a go at cupcakes instead! These were such a cute size and tasted amazing!
Ingredients
150g butter
150g brown sugar
 2 eggs
150g self raising flour
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger

Method: 
1. Pre - heat you oven to 180 degrees
2. In a bowl, mix together the butter and sugar until you get a creamy mixture
3. Add your flour a little bit at a time, folding it in, add the cinnamon and ginger and mix
4. Add your eggs one at a time, mixing after each one. If you find your mixture is quite sticky you can add a little bit of milk here
5. Line a muffin/cupcake tin with bun cases and add about a tablespoon of the mixture to each one 
6. Bake in the oven for about 20 minutes then leave to cool on a wire rack

The first time I made these I didn't actually do a frosting as I just didn't have the ingredients or the time, they were still delicious though! The second time I just made a simple vanilla buttercream. I did attempt to pipe the buttercream on top but then the bag broke so that didn't go to plan. I just used a tsp to spread some on and I think they look pretty cute!

I can't wait to make these again. These are going to be perfect for Autumn. Let me know if you give them a go!

Have you seen my other baking posts? Chocolate Chip Flapjack and Bourbon Biscuits.

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Friday, 11 September 2015

Next Customisation Competition!*

I was really happy to be approached by Next a few weeks ago to see if I wanted to take part in their customisation challenge! They asked their top ten bloggers to take part and each customise a denimn shirt, adding as little or as much detail as we wanted. I was a bit apprehensive at first as i wouldn't say i'm very creative, things like this were what I was worst at when I was at school, but it got me thinking and I think I managed to do okay! I couldn't turn down the chance to work with a big brand like Next anyway as I have loved them for ages. 

I was sent this blue denimn shirt, which is £22 and I had to try and come up with something creative and different. 
I started by actually finding some sort of material to use on the shirt, I had an old scarf that hasn't been worn in ages so I thought I could parts of that. There were different colours and patterns on the scarf too so I thought it would look good having a different section of the scarf on the shirt. I started with the collar and just added a square of material on each side. 
Aswell as adding some to the collar,I also added a strip to the bottom of the shirt, just below the last button. I thought this added a nice amount of detail along with the collar but not too much. I've gone for very little customisation and very simple but I wanted it to suit me and I want to be able to wear this soon so I didn't want to go all out there with it and then never wear it. 

I'm really pleased with the finished look and would love to know what you think, it was something really different for me to do and I didn't know if I'd be able to come up with something but i'm really pleased I took part! I also just want to say too I was really impressed with the quality of this shirt, the material is really nice and soft and it feels like its going to last me ages, it looks good with jeans and basic tops but I think it can be dressed up too and will go with most things, it's a really comfortable but stylish piece. 

How would you have customised this shirt? 

You can see the other entries for the customisation challenge here!

 I was sent the shirt in order to take part in this challenge, thank you to next for asking me!*

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The Countdown to Christmas...

I know its only just September but I feel like I can now get properly excited for christmas. 

Some people love Summer but im not one of them, I know we didn't get much of a summer at all but I am so glad we're on our way to Autumn and Winter. I've literally been waiting for this since christmas last year. I just love it when its cold and I can get all cosy with blankets and have the candles on while watching christmas films. ITV2 have already started playing The Holiday and thats when you know christmas isn't too far away. It's one of those films you can just watch over and over at christmas.
It doesn't even feel like it was that long ago when we were preparing for christmas last year, we had just moved into our flat and we had to try and find presents for people on not much money and in very little time but I think we did okay with what we had, I can't wait to start buying presents for people this year! I've already got a list on my phone of present ideas for people and if I could I would buy them now, I like to get sorted early. As we're going to Manchester in November again, I've already planned to get as many presents as possible while we're there and then once we're back we can just get the last things that we need. I think we've got some really good presents planned this year and I can't wait to see if people like them. I really need to have a think about what to get George though, men are so hard to buy for! If you have any ideas please let me know! I have a few things in mind but I feel like im always getting the same things and I really want to go all out on presents for him this year because he deserves it. I can't wait for us both to open our presents on christmas morning and watch films together while we make christmas dinner, last christmas was perfect being together so I can't wait for the same this year. I want to make the flat really cosy this year. The living room and kitchen are basically done, the only thing we are missing is a mirror for above the sofa, I feel like once we have that then we're done. I want to get a big christmas tree this year and have decorations all round the room. I can't wait. 

Only 3 months to go! Are you excited for christmas?

Did you see my last post? Weekend Summary #4 - Date Day and Talking about Weddings...

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Wednesday, 9 September 2015

Weekend Summary #4 - Date Day and Talking about Weddings...

This weekend started out really quiet as George was working and I just didn't really have much to do, Though I did get quite a lot of blogging done so look out for some exciting posts over the next few weeks, I've already started planning christmas ones! When George got in Saturday night he actually surprised me and told me he had booked Sunday off and he was supposed to have Monday off anyway so it meant we had a few days together before I went back to work which was really nice. 

We were planning on going to Ikea but my anxiety was quite bad in the morning and I wasn't really upto it so we went out for a nice meal instead, we went to Ed's Diner which is one of our favourites, if you hadn't guessed. I have spoken about it a few times over the last month or so, we don't go every week I promise. George went for the Slick Dog which is a hot dog with cheese sauce, bacon bits and BBQ sauce, I went for the usual chicken burger and we shared wet fries again (chips and gravy), they just get better everytime and the staff are so lovely! We also shared Pancakes for dessert, I was really keen to try them after the last time we went, they looked really good and they tasted it too, I think it's my new favourite.
We did a bit of shopping while we were out but we didn't get much, we picked up a few birthday presents for people, I love buying presents for other people, I can't wait until christmas when we can get loads of things for everyone. I also picked up a few bits from Superdrug, I really needed a new clear nail polish so I picked up the top coat one from Barry M which is my favourite and only £2.99. We did have a look for a few homeware bits as we're changing up the furniture in the bedroom, hopefully soon, but I didn't see anything I liked, everywhere was just a bit empty but I did find out this weekend New Look are bringing out a homeware range so i'm so excited about that! 

Did anyone else see the pictures from Tanya Burr and Jim Chapmans wedding this weekend? I'm not a huge fan of them but you have to admit the pictures are so beautiful, I remember when I first found them on youtube a few years ago, I really loved them then, and Jim had just proposed in New York and they had already been together for a long time so it's really nice to see that their married now, the dress is beautiful and they just look so happy. It got me and George talking this weekend about our wedding and we just can't wait for it to finally happen. I think it really will be that we just decide one day or week to go and do it, so many people just elope or go and get married without telling anyone and I really can't see us doing it any other way at the moment. I've already thought about buying just a simple, lace dress, like a summer dress, one that I can wear again and isn't a proper wedding dress, and we've already thought about buying rings soon just so we have them ready for whenever we decide! I want to be married now, these pictures have made me want it even more.

Have you seen last weeks weekend post? Paradise Island and Family Time.

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Monday, 7 September 2015

Food I Have Been Loving This Week #4

So not the healthiest food ever this week...
1. One Pan Brownies - I put a recipe up for these brownies ages ago and I just kind of forgot about them but after making them last week, I definitely think they'll be something I make more often now. I think they were even better this time than before, they were so gooey and chocolately, I did add quite a lot of dark and milk chocolate so it all melted while it was cooking. I just want to eat them again now.

2. Heinz Fajita Beans - I am obsessed with these. I've been wanting to try them for ages and we finally got round to it a few weeks ago and now I just want them with everything. They're just a little bit spicy and different to normal beans and you can do a lot with them. I think they go with most things and we thought they might go really nice as like a curry with some chicken in with some rice. Just so good.

3. Breadchips - These came in last months Degustabox and I literally ate the whole bag straight away. They are from the Say Yes to No brand which claims there products have no 'false promises, fake colours, advertising lies, artificial taste or photoshopping'. I definitely felt less guilty eating these than I do a normal packet of crisps because you knew better things have gone into these, we got the sour cream and onion flavour and they were really good. I'll definitely be looking out for them in the shops. 

4. Aldi Brownie Ice Cream Lollies - If you haven't tried these, you need too! I love Aldi, there prices are amazing compared to some Supermarkets and they do some really good things, these included. We saw them a few weeks ago and we now pick them up whenever we're doing our shopping there. It's just chocolate ice cream, which is my favourite, covered in milk chocolate with crunchy brownie pieces, amazing.

5. Gingerbread Muffins - I've been thinking of christmas for months now but last week I decided to just go for it and do some christmas baking. It is September now so it isn't that far away. I found a basic bun recipe online then adapted it to suit my theme of christmas and they were actually so much better than I expected. I am going to post a full recipe for these a bit closer to christmas as its probably still a little too soon for some people. I think i'm going to make the mixture again soon and then bake it in a loaf tin rather than muffins as I think that would be so nice warm with ice cream!

Have you seen previous posts in this series? 1, 2 and 3?

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Friday, 4 September 2015

NYC Gel Gloss Nail Polish - Haute Couture...

When I picked up the Rimmel Super Shine that I mentioned a while ago, I also got the NYC Gel Gloss in the gorgeous shade Haute Couture. I featured them both in this haul and I really wanted to do a review of this one as I don't tend to use the brand NYC. 

I wasn't sure what to expect with this nail polish as I've only tried one NYC Nail Polish before and that wasn't great but this one was much better. It's such a great colour and one I am sure I will be wearing a lot over the next few months, it seems like colour that transitions into winter well with it being more of a dark pink rather than bright. 
I love the brush, it makes it so easy to apply and it doesn't go streaky or clumpy at all. I did two coats of this and then a top coat which really helped it stay on, but I think it would have been okay anyway, as it was a Gel Gloss polish, its more likely to stay on for longer than regular one. 

I'd love to know if you've tried this nail polish. If so, what did you think? Have you tried any from NYC?

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Wednesday, 2 September 2015

Weekend Summary #3 - Paradise Island and Family Time...

There wasn't a weekend post last week as there really wasn't much to say, it was a very quiet weekend and even though it was really nice, it definitely wouldn't be an exciting one to write about or for you to read! This weekend though we had Georges brothers over which is always fun and it was definitely more exciting than last week!

I had been waiting for Friday as soon as I went to work on Tuesday, work has been so busy and I had loads to do, but it's better to be busy and I enjoyed everything I was doing. I was so excited for a lie in this weekend though, it felt amazing to get in on Friday knowing I had some time off. We started the weekend off on Friday night by getting a takeaway with the boys, we have the best curry place near us so we went a bit overboard and got loads. Saturday we went to Paradise Island which is a mini golf place in Sheffield, I didn't even know it existed but it was really good, I think I came last but I did get a hole in one at one point so I didn't do that bad. When we got back we made Pitta Pizzas which I forgot to take a picture of and we all watched X Factor with some treats.
After the boys had gone on Sunday me and George watched Taken 3 together and it was so good! I normally hate those sort of films but I loved the first two and I think the third was just as good, I really recommend it if you haven't seen it. We also had bank holiday Monday together which was nice as George is normally working. We went to Meadowhall which was packed and we picked up something nice for tea, we went for Steak but again I forgot to take a picture. I normally take quite a few pictures for my weekend posts but we were having too much fun so I didn't want to get my phone out all the time. I did manage to get some good ones from Saturday though when we went to mini golf, George had to pose when I got the camera out!

Have you seen Weekend Summary #1 and #2?

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