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Friday, 19 January 2018

My Current Homeware Wishlist - I Want It All...

Over the last few weeks I've been in such a spending mood which really isn't good because my bank balance can not cope with that. I'm just seeing so many lovely bits everywhere. At the moment my real focus for the flat is the spare room which as I've mentioned recently is now finally becoming an office. Yes, after talking about it on my blog for years, we are finally getting somewhere. I'm writing the majority of my blog posts in there now which is making me so much more productive. The main priority now is getting the desk from Ikea which I've been lusting over for ages, but obviously I keep seeing lots of decorative pieces which I think would go so well with it. The main place I've been looking is actually Asda, their homeware section is on point at the moment, so I thought I might as well share the stuff I'm hoping to order very soon.
The first few bits I saw aren't for the office but I feel like I kind of need them anyway. First of all this Sketch London Duvet is right up my street and for only £12 for a double, I think it's a bit of a bargain! It's been ages since I last bought a new bedding set so I think this might be the one I go for. I love that it is London all over but is very subtle and not too out there. A few bits for the bathroom I really like are the Wire Wash Sign and the Wire Basket. I think once the spare room is finished we need to move onto the bathroom, just painting the walls would make a huge difference and little bits like this would really complete it I think. I currently have a little box from Lush which I use for my bath bombs but I'd really like a basket like this one and the sign matches it so well and I think it would look really nice on top of the bathroom cabinet. Something for the kitchen I'd like is this Heart Chopping Board, though I think it would make a great blog prop! Blog props don't need to be expensive, and I've been after something like this for a while, this is £5 and would really change my photos up I think. I'd love this for my foodie blog photos and I have a collaboration coming up soon which I think this would fit really well with. Something for the living room which is just perfect is these Bear Tealight Holders! £6 for two isn't too bad I don't think and I already know that they could go on either side of our TV stand. 
A few other bits I saw which I'd love to go on the top of my desk are two bear ornaments, I have a problem I know. I just like little quirky things like this and I've got to have something bear in my office haven't I? I wasn't originally looking for a mirror for the office but then I spotted this Hexaganol one and I thought it would be perfect for one of the back walls. I currently just have a calendar up where I think this could go, but I think it would look really classy and add something extra to the mainly white room. Something I'd like because it would look pretty on my desk but also make a good blog prop is this vase with peonies in. I love using fake flowers as a blog prop but I definitely need some different ones so this would be perfect.
Another thing I think would be great for blog photos, especially for any beauty products is this Copper Leaf Plate. It looks huge but I don't currently have anything else like it and it matches well with the rest of my props. The last bits for the office that I love are this Shelving Unit and the Bronze Lampshade. The shelving unit would be perfect to go next to my desk and I'd love to fill it with photo frames, flowers and things like that, and the lampshade is a bit of a necessity. I'd like a really nice one and this is £12 which I think is quite reasonable. A few extras which definitely aren't a must are this Peach and Honey Reed Diffuser because I just love having these around the flat, and this scent sounds like an absolute dream! and the Grey Camera Ornament would be something I could put on the shelving unit, and for a blogger, I think it's an ideal fit!
When I added all of these to my basket a few days ago, as you can imagine, it cost a bomb so we definitely won't be getting them all, but I'd definitely love to pick up a few bits. Now we've properly started with the office, I just want it finished and all of these bits would just go so well. I think my current priority is the mirror, bedding set, chopping board, tealights and flowers so if I manage to get any I'm sure you'll see them in a blog post soon.

Is any homeware currently on your wishlist?

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Thursday, 18 January 2018

Planning A Small Wedding - How We Did It, Costs & More...

Yep, another wedding post, I'm sorry! I will shut up about it one day. When I first posted about George and I getting married I mentioned that as it was a small wedding, if anyone would like a post all about how we went about it, the booking process, costs involved etc, then I was more than happy to do that and a few people said it was something they would love to read. When it came to researching for a small wedding and the things we needed to do and pay for, it actually wasn't that easy to find some proper information and a post like this would have been so useful at the time. Obviously I don't know everything but if you are engaged or planning a wedding, and just want a few tips then hopefully I can help in some way.
getting married
1. Think About Exactly What You Want - We both knew for a long time that we didn't want a fuss. No big church wedding with lots of people there, that just isn't us. For us the only options were either going abroad and getting married and having the honeymoon at the same time or just go for a registry office wedding. Obviously when I was working the first option seemed like the best one because we had the money to think about going somewhere really nice for it, but once I left my job that became a bit more difficult. It can be done but when you add everything up it doesn't work out the cheapest so for us a registry office wedding was the only option and really it worked out for the better. With a registry office wedding you have the option to just get married with 2 witnesses there which is what we did or you can book rooms out with more guests if you wish. There's no pressure to invite the whole family and all your friends, it really can be a straightforward thing if you want it to be and there is absolutely nothing wrong with doing it that way. Whatever you choose, just make sure it's exactly what you want because it's YOUR day.

2. Get In Touch With The Venue & Think About Wedding Rings - If you decide on a registry office wedding, it's a good idea to pop them an email or give them a ring so you can be clear on all the details and what exactly you need to do. As I said I struggled to find out much information online so I sent an email to my local registry office explaining what we wanted, asked for the prices and also the dates available that year. This was when we were told they only do weddings on the third wednesday of each month so that's something to consider when planning a registry office wedding. I'm not sure if this is the same in every single one, it all depends on your location but I imagine they stick to some sort of schedule like that. They get booked up fast so you might need to book a good while in advance. We booked in June 2017 and the only dates available left were one morning in November or 3 times available on the 20th December which is the one we went for, at 3.30pm. We were also told at the time that if we didn't want either of those, they were booked up pretty much from February for a few months because of Valentines so that's something else to think about. Once we booked the wedding, we started to look at wedding rings as we knew it was likely they would have to be ordered in. Within a week of George picking and trying one on, it arrived in store but mine ended up taking about 6 weeks. Obviously the sooner you can get these the better just in case they do need to be ordered in or be resized.

3. Deposits and Costs - Though a wedding is always going to cost money, it can be done on the cheaper side and a registry office wedding like ours really doesn't have to cost much. I think in the end it cost £25 to secure the room, £50 for the ceremony which includes £4 for the certificate and then £35 each for notice of marriage. Obviously if you want a bigger room with more guests then the prices go up. If we had gone for that option we would have been looking anywhere between £100 and £180 for the room and then the things I mentioned above, on top of that. As we just wanted it to be us, in the end the actual ceremony came to roughly £150.

4. Notice Of Marriage - Before your wedding day, you and your partner will have to go and give notice of your marriage. This can be done up to a year before your wedding day and really doesn't take much time at all. I was definitely a little nervous beforehand because I had no idea what to expect but it was all quite simple. A registrar will talk to you and your partner individually first, checking your ID, asking you each basic questions about one another, so their birthday, occupation etc, and then they'll talk to you both and that's just to go over the details of the day and this is when they'll ask you what sorts of vows you want reading. It really is quite straightforward and nothing to worry about, and after that we were just on a bit of a high because it all finally felt real.

5. Outfits, Cake, Family Etc - I wasn't sure how to round up this post but I felt like everything else could sort of go into one point. So if you're going down the same route as us, you're probably not going to be inviting everyone you know. If that's the case it's totally up to you when you tell everyone. If you feel comfortable tell them beforehand and I'm sure they'll be more than happy to celebrate with you afterwards. At the end of the day it's about you and your partner, nobody else, don't fall into the pressure of doing what everyone else wants you to do, if you want to go off and get married, telling people afterwards, go for it. As we really wanted it to be a very fuss free wedding, we both had quite casual outfits, no suits and dresses here! but again it's completely up to you. In the end George went for smart black jeans, smart boots and a white shirt, and I went for black skinny jeans, a lacy long sleeved top and some sparkly flats. It probably wasn't a very conventional wedding outfit but the most important thing was that we felt comfortable. When I think back now I can be happy with what I wore because I felt good! As I said in my wedding blog post we didn't get a cake made or anything fancy, we walked over to Patisserie Valerie afterwards and got the 4 cakes for £10 deal. Their cakes are beautiful so this still felt really special and now every anniversary we can go back and have more! If you want to go all out with a cake, then go for it, just because the actual ceremony is small doesn't mean anything else needs to be, if you want to celebrate afterwards then that's completely your choice, everyone is different!

I'm not sure just how helpful this post will be, I do feel I've rambled quite a bit but I just wanted to explain the process for us and how we went about it. In the end if you just want to be married, then a simple registry office is perfect and is just as special as any other wedding. It's all about what you and your partner want and feel comfortable with, and for us this was the perfect option! 

If you have any questions or need any more information, feel free to get in touch, I might not be the most help but I can try.

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Wednesday, 17 January 2018

23 Things I Love...

When I turned 21 two years ago I did a post called 21 Things I Want To Achieve, and to this day it's still one of my favourite posts. I did something similar last year, that being 22 Things I've Learnt In 22 Years and this year I've decided on 23 Things I Love. It gets more and more difficult each year to come up with a new post but as it was my birthday recently I want to carry it on as I really do love looking back on the previous ones.
1. Going On Trains - There is just something so exciting about getting on a train and just doing nothing for a few hours. I mentioned this in a post a long time ago but for me the actual travelling to wherever I'm going is just as fun as the actual destination. I love to zone out for a bit, read a book, or listen to music and just chill. I always get excited when I know I'm going on a train soon.

2. Petting Dogs - Dogs are probably one of my all time favourite things, whenever I see one I always get a little giddy and smile and sometimes I even wave and say hello, cos I'm a child, but I just love them. As I had a dog when I was younger, I now don't really feel a home is complete without one and I am just waiting for the day that we get to bring one home. It would be loved beyond belief. It's not often I get to actually have a stroke of any dogs but when I do, BEST DAY EVER. There was one at Winter Wonderland in November which was more than happy for me to pay it some attention and it really did make my day.

3. Bubble Baths - For me there isn't much that is better than a boiling hot bubble bath. Whether I'm stressed, tired, poorly, or just a bit bored, a bubble bath sorts me right out and just chills me out. It's my time to read a book or catch up on some youtube, and I actually for some reason seem to come up with quite a few blog ideas when I'm relaxing in the bath! Now it's Winter, I'm having about a million baths a week as they make me feel so warm and cosy.

4. Face Masks - Sticking with the pamper theme, I love a face mask. I never used to get the hype around them but after trying a few different ones last year, I'm now all about them and can't get enough. I've got a little stash in the bathroom cupboard now so whenever I feel my skin is in need of some looking after or I'm having a bit of a self care night, I've got plenty to choose from.

5. Blogging - I suppose this is a bit of an obvious one but I really do love blogging more than I can say and I don't know where I would be without it now. I started this blog on a whim almost 4 years ago now, never did I think I'd still be doing it now and still finding things to talk about. I definitely go through phases where I'm not as into it as other times or I have a bit of bloggers block but overall it's the best thing ever and as I love to just talk, it's the perfect thing for me really. 

6. Baking - I've posted so many baking recipes on my blog, I've actually lost count but it really does make me so happy. I have a firm few favourites now like my lemon drizzle, school sponge cake and easter chocolate cake so I make those quite a lot but I also love trying something new and coming up with different recipes. It's such a good feeling when you try something and it goes well and everyone likes it. That is one of the best feelings ever for me.

7. Listening To Podcasts - This is something I only really got into towards the end of 2017 but now I love putting on a podcast rather than the TV and getting some blogging done. It's almost like having a friend with you as it feels like your involved in the conversations. If you have any recommendations of any I should listen to, let me know!

8. Cooking - Similar to baking, I love it when I make a meal for the first time and it goes well. I'm not always that adventurous with food and I do tend to stick to the same sorts of things, but whatever I choose to make, I just love being in the kitchen. I love making really warming meals in the winter especially and cooking for other people always makes me happy.

9. Christmas Markets - I always get so excited around November time as that's when all the Christmas Markets start and after such a special trip in 2014, I always want to go back to them. They just make me feel so festive, the Manchester one especially, and it always gets me so ready for Christmas. The food is always pretty amazing too!

10. Cleaning - So this isn't something I love every single day, but when I'm in the right mood I actually really enjoy cleaning. Seeing things go from messy to tidy and having a clean flat makes me think a little bit clearer and generally just makes my day so much better. It really is true, a tidy house, a tidy mind.

11. Getting Through A Boxset - I love watching the soaps on TV and I'm all about reality TV like TOWIE but I also love binge watching a boxset. There are some brilliant shows on Netflix at the moment and there has even been quite a few good ones on ITV and BBC recently aswell so we've been watching so many different things. We got through all 4 series of Line of Duty last year which is such an incredible show and we also fully caught up with Game of Thrones so it meant we could watch when it was actually on TV.

12. Supermarkets - This might seem like a bit of a weird one but I get so much joy from supermarkets! I absolutely love food shopping and though we usually spend far too much on stuff we don't need, I always enjoy it so much. We did quite a big food shop just before Christmas and I just loved it, I don't know why they make me so happy!

13. Going To London - A bit of an obvious one if you're a regular reader of my blog but of course London had to be on this list. I won't go on about it because I'm aware I talk about it a lot, but of all the places I've been, London is my favourite. It's really hard to explain but I don't think I've ever felt as happy as I do there and to say it's probably one of the busiest places and somewhere a lot of people with anxiety would hate, I feel so comfortable there.

14. Making Lists - I love getting things written down and in some sort of order, like with this list I suppose. If I've got a lot to do, making a list of what's a priority really helps get my mind in order and it's such a good feeling when I can tick something off. I make lists for just about everything but it really does help with keeping organised.

15. Music - I can listen to music for hours and hours on end. I love just sitting with my earphones in, with the music turned up really loud and just doing nothing. It helps when I'm feeling stressed and at night I even like to listen to music as if I'm struggling to sleep, it gives me something else to focus on. I also find music is a massive motivator. If I've got music on when I'm blogging, I find it makes me 10x more productive and I get loads done.

16. Buying Gifts - As much as it's nice to receive presents, I personally really do love getting gifts for others. Every Christmas I get prepared so early when it's come to other peoples presents, I start looking months in advance because I just find it so exciting! I really think about what each person I'm buying for would like and I do put so much effort into it. I want people to be happy and smile, it's just the best feeling.

17. Going To The Cinema - As we have unlimited cards we go to the cinema quite often and now I think it would just be weird if we went more than few weeks without it. Last year we saw so many different films and I'm hoping we get to do the same again this year. It's a nice little date night and it really doesn't have to be expensive.

18. Decorating - As we rent, we're limited with how much decorating we can do, but I'm really happy with the changes we've made over the last few years. Adding the photo wall to the bedroom was a big step and completely changed up the room, I love our cosy living room, and we've now actually made some real progress with our spare room. As it's a small flat, that room is kind of the one where just about everything that doesn't have a place goes so it's took a lot of work but I'm actually writing this post now in the office and I've waited a long time for that! I'm looking forward to adding more to the office as the year goes on and I'd really love to paint the bathroom finally in 2018.

19. Pinterest - Out of all of my social media, Pinterest is probably the one I love the most. As I mentioned in this post last year, I just find it's the one with the least pressure. I can post as and when I want, I can repin a variety of different things and it's just fun. I can spend hours and hours on there!

20. Spending Time Alone - I don't like to be lonely but I do like to be alone. Sometimes you do just need a few hours to yourself to not necessarily do anything, and it can do you the world of good. When George went away in December with work, I of course missed him and by the end of day 4 I was like okay come home now, but it was quite nice to have that time alone to just look after myself and do what I wanted. When you live with someone it can be easy to just spend all of your time with them and not really think of anyone else but I did enjoy having a bit of time where it could just be me.

21. Staying In Hotels - Similar to my very first post with trains, I find staying in hotels so exciting. I love getting back to the hotel after a day out exploring wherever we are and having that feeling of just exhaustion and getting into a massive bed. I always get so giddy about staying in a hotel and I don't think that will ever go away!

22. Colouring - I definitely don't make as much time for this as I used to but colouring really helps with my anxiety. It just really relaxes me and gives me something else to focus on other than whatever is stressing me out. I've got a few different colouring books now, each of them so different and I really do enjoy having a bit of time to focus on that instead of my phone or the TV.

23. Reading Old Blog Posts - This isn't something I do often but whenever I do, I always have such a good time. I love reading back through my old posts as I get to see just how much I've improved since I started and I also get to relive some really lovely memories. I've blogged about all of our weekends away, shopping trips, birthdays, things like that and it always makes me smile when I have a re-read of them.

So that's 23 things I love! A real mix of travel, food, blogging and so much other stuff. I have no idea what sort of post I'll do for my 24th birthday next year, this one was difficult enough 🙈

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Tuesday, 16 January 2018

My Tips For Improving Your DA...

If you're a blogger then it's very likely you've heard of DA, whether you properly understand it or not is another matter. It wasn't really until 2017 that I really started to take my blog seriously and read up on it and what it meant for my blog. In that time I've managed to up my DA to 27 which I'm pretty proud of given that in summer 2016 it was only 3. I'm not an expert by any means and I've read lots of other fabulous posts on DA which I'll leave a link to at the end of this post but I thought I would share a few of my tips and explain how I did it.
improving DAFirst of all if you're reading this thinking, what the hell is she on about, your DA is your Domain Authority. This is a score that estimates how well your blog/wesbite ranks on search engines like Google and as far as I know, the higher your score (up to 100) the better. You can check your DA here on MOZ. So when I first checked my DA in the summer of 2016 I saw it was only 3 but given that I hadn't really worked on improving it or had even considered what SEO was, I couldn't really complain. Since then I've been making several changes to my blog to try and up it and gradually it's gone up, and even though I know it could still be better and I'm sure there are many bloggers with higher DA's than me, I'm proud of what it's at. There are lots of things that affect your DA which I've listed below but sometimes even things that can't helped like how long ago you started your blog can affect it, building it up does take time and it's not something that can be fixed overnight unfortunately so be prepared to work at it for a while. 

1. Check For Broken Links - I think this is the thing that has really helped with my DA over the last year or so. It wasn't until reading a post from the lovely Emmy once, that I realised I had never checked my broken links. As I started my blog in 2014 and didn't see this post until 2017, you can imagine I had a load of links to go through and change. I remember it literally took me days and it was something I had to keep going back to because it drove me mad. There were so many links to clothing items and beauty bits that were no longer available so those links were going nowhere, therefore affecting my DA. I now make sure I check my broken links AT LEAST once a month just so I can properly keep on top of it and get any links changed before MOZ (the site where you can check your DA) updates.

2. Guest Posting - I haven't done this quite as much as I would have liked but over the last year or so I've been making more of an effort to put myself forward for guest posts on other peoples blogs. Doing this and having a link to your blog within the post, means a whole new audience may come over to read more of your blog posts, and having that link from another blog really helps with DA. I think I've done about 3 or 4 guest posts, and not only does help towards your DA, it's a great way of interacting with other bloggers.

3. Quality Content - I suppose this is an obvious one but your content really is so important if you want to improve your DA. When I first started my blog I did quite short blog posts and looking back now, it's no wonder my DA never went up. I found out last year that most bloggers tend to go for at least 300 words per post, though there isn't really a proper recommended amount. Some do around 300, some 500, some 1000+. I'm a bit of a talker so a lot of my posts now end up being quite long but I have no doubt that has helped. It's also quite important to have some sort of routine with it, because if you only post once a month or so, your score is going to be much lower than someone that posts everyday. Also of course spelling and grammar are very important so always go over your posts before publishing.

4. Link Back To Older Posts - Again something else I only started really doing last year but something that I am so conscious of now. I used to unintentionally link to older posts every so often whereas now I really try to get at least one link to an older post in each blog post. I link posts that I think are relevant or similar, and for example if I'm mentioning a foundation I love in a post, I'll include a link to my review of that product. Doing this keeps people on your blog for longer and the more posts they read, the better. It will show your consistent and have relevant content so this is a big must I think.

5. Comment On Other Blogs - I absolutely love commenting on other blogs and it's something I've done really since I started blogging. Now I know the importance of it though because not only is it just a really nice thing to do, leaving a link to your blog helps improve your score. Don't just link drop, leave a genuine comment that shows you've read the post and then end it with your link. I tend to end my comments with 'Tiffany x www.foodandotherloves.co.uk'.

6. Share Your Content - I know it's a bit of a pain to schedule tweets, in fact I've said several times it's the bane of my life because it can take so much time but sharing your content really does help for many reasons. With all of my blog posts now after I've pressed publish, I share on Pinterest, Twitter, Facebook, Google+, Bloglovin and then sometimes Instagram and Insta Stories. This gets your posts out there to so many other people and it may also mean they share it on their platforms too and this all helps to build your DA.

I hope these tips help you if you're wanting to increase your DA score. These are really the only basic things I've done over the last year to up it to something I'm proud of but there are other things you can do too like optimising images and formatting your posts (things I need to work on next). All of these things really do work so definitely give them a try if you haven't yet! For more advice these are a few blog posts from other bloggers that I think are really helpful!

Chloe // Emmy // Jordanne

Do you have any tips for increasing DA? Anything particular you have done that's worked?

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Monday, 15 January 2018

2017 Film Watch List Continued...

In May last year I did a post all about the films I'd seen at the cinema during the first five months or so of 2017. It's now time for me to talk about the rest of the films I've watched since then as we're into 2018 already and I want to start again and do the same thing this year. As me and George have unlimited cards we go to the cinema quite a lot and end up seeing so many different things! I definitely think we saw more in the second half of the year, and the majority of them were actually really good too so I'd been really looking forward to writing this up.
2017 cinema watch list
Colossal - This was a bit of a strange one and really didn't end how I expected it too! It stars Anne Hathaway and Jason Sudeikis who I'm a really big fan of and the story is actually really interesting as it's so out there. There is a giant creature of some sort that is destroying Seoul, South Korea and over time we see that Gloria (Anne Hathaway's character) is somehow connected to it and she ends up sort of going to war a little bit with someone she thinks is a really good friend. It was definitely a weird one and I'm not sure I'd be in a hurry to watch it again but I'm glad I saw it as it's not usually my sort of film.

Baywatch - I went into this film not really expecting much but I ended up absolutely loving it! Most people I imagine will know of Baywatch so I'm sure you can guess it wasn't a serious film but just a really lighthearted comedy that was really easy to watch. It stars The Rock who I kind of love a little bit and also Zac Efron and I actually really liked all of the characters. It's definitely one I'd watch again and would buy on DVD at some point. I kind of hope they make another.

My Cousin Rachel - This was definitely more of a serious film and nothing like most of the others. I was so intrigued by this for months. After first seeing the trailer I knew I had to go and see it and it didn't let me down. It stars Sam Claflin who plays a young Englishman plotting revenge against his late cousin's wife. He believes she is responsible for his death and I have to admit it does look like that throughout the film, but we're never really told whether he was right or not. Even though he's convinced she's evil and a murderer, he also kind of falls for her in a weird way and is under her spell, only making things even more complicated. In the end we're left to make our own decision, was she evil or just misunderstood? I go back and forth on the answer a lot but I highly recommend watching it.

The House - Will Ferrell is just my favourite so any film with him in, I tend to like. For our 6 year anniversary we went for a meal and then went to see this and it was a really funny film. Definitely not the best thing ever but I didn't expect it to be. Aswell as Will Ferrell, it also stars Amy Poehler who plays his wife, and together their characters decide to open an underground casino with a neighbour so they can raise money for their daughters scholarship. Of course plenty of things go wrong and nothing is straightforward but it's definitely a funny, lighthearted film, perfect for a Friday night.

Spiderman Homecoming - Action sort of films like this aren't usually my sort of thing but I really wanted to see the new Spiderman one and it didn't disappoint. Tom Holland was brilliant and I think he was brilliant for the role. It had a great story, great characters and had me hooked all the way through. I can't wait for more in the future.

Annabelle Creation - I love a good horror film. There have been quite a few come out recently but we've not managed to see many which is so annoying as I usually really enjoy them! I find with some horrors though they just don't stay in the cinema for long so it can be tricky trying to find a time to go. I've been a fan of The Conjuring films for a while, I think they are so good and the first Annabelle film which is part of that series was so creepy and had such a good storyline, so I really couldn't wait for this one. Like the first, it was genuinely really creepy and scary and I was definitely a little terrified that night going to sleep! I think the whole series of films is great and I already can't wait for the next one which I think is all about the nun from the second conjuring film.

IT - Another horror and one that has kind of stuck in my mind a little ever since! I'm not the biggest fan of clowns anyway but this reminded me just how scary they can be. I loved the group of kids in the film because they were genuinely hilarious. So many little jokes and one liners and they were all really great actors, especially Finn Wolfhard who is also in Stranger Things. I'd never seen the original IT so I had no expectations really but I was really impressed and I'm looking forward to seeing what they do in the next one.

Kingsman The Golden Circle - I never expected to like the first Kingsman film, I'm not sure why, I just didn't think it was my sort of movie but I've watched it a few times and everytime I've loved it! It was nothing like I had watched before and I loved each of the characters, especially Colin Firths so I was eager to see the second one a few months ago. I was actually quite sad watching his character in the second one but overall I loved the whole film and it was an amazing sequel. It's not often you find a sequel to be as good as the first film but this really was and wasn't a let down in any sort of way. I always worry a little when a film is so good and they reveal they'll be doing more, because you don't want it to be ruined but hopefully if they do another, it will be just as good as the second one was.

Murder On The Orient Express - I've read mixed reviews of this but it was one I really, really enjoyed! I remember seeing the trailer for this a long time ago and thinking then it had to be one I went to see, and I think we ended up going opening night. It's full of so many big names so I thought it would be pretty good and I went into it not really knowing much about the story. In the end I loved how it was done and I really didn't expect the twist! All the way through I kept changing my mind over who had committed the crime but the way it ended, totally surprised me!

Paddington 2 - Aww I just loved this film. I don't need to go on about Paddington that much as I've mentioned it several times on my blog over the last few months but it's just the best. The first film is one of my favourites and I really hoped the second one would live up to my expectations but it exceeded them! The second film sees Paddington wrongly get into a bit of bother, ending up in prison and planning his escape! He's just adorable and everything about it is brilliant. I'm always wanting things to work out for him and it actually breaks my heart a little when he's sad! The story, the characters, the location, the effects, I love it all and I can't wait for a third film!

Daddys Home 2 - I was so looking forward to seeing this! I absolutely love the first Daddy's Home film, though it's definitely one that some people hate. It's another starring Will Ferrell who I've already mentioned and he again teamed up with Mark Wahlberg to play two dads trying to get along and play happy families with their children, stepchildren and wives. It's one of those films you'll either really enjoy or really cringe at but I just found it so funny. I thought it was just as good as the first film, and I really hoped it would be, as at first I really couldn't work out how they were going to do a sequel. I definitely don't think they should do anymore but both the first and second are films I'd be able to watch again and again. They are the sorts of films that just make me laugh on a down day and are great to watch with family.

Pitch Perfect 3 - I kind of went into this film expecting to be disappointed so I suppose it's not a surprise that that's how I felt afterwards. I love the first Pitch Perfect, and even the second one, though it did take some time to grow on me, but I just felt like there was no need for a third and I really didn't know what they were going to do with it. It wasn't the worst film of the year and I'm sure I'll watch it again but overall I didn't think the songs were as good, I didn't feel like some of the story made sense (why get rid of jesse and benji?!) and I just didn't find it as funny as the previous ones.

So that's the rest of the films I managed to see in the cinema in 2017! I've really enjoyed writing this and the first one early last year so I'm really looking forward to doing it again in 2018. There have been so many brilliant films out recently but I think my favourites have to be Paddington 2, Baywatch and Daddys Home 2. I'd love to know if you've seen any of the films on this list and what you thought of them?

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Saturday, 13 January 2018

6 Places I Would Love To Go On Honeymoon...

I really hope my posts aren't annoying you too much, I feel like since we got married last month I haven't shut up about it on my blog, but I'm still just so excited about it all and in a very happy bubble. As we had a very small wedding and it was around Christmas time we knew we weren't going to get a honeymoon in straight away, but for us it really didn't matter. Even though it would have been nice to hop on a plane straight away, we knew it was never going to happen like that as it just costs too much money but with a bit of saving, I'm hoping this year is the year we can finally get away and have a proper honeymoon. I've got a few places in mind that I would love to consider, that I think would all make an amazing holiday.
honeymoon destinations1. New York - New York has been on my travel bucketlist for so so long. A few years ago when we first got engaged, it was a place we were considering even then as a honeymoon destination. It's probably one of the most expensive places on this list and would require a lot of saving as we would want to go all out and experience everything, but it would be incredible if we one day got to go. There is so much to do there, walks around Central Park, Times Square, skating at the Rockefeller Centre at Christmas, and of course so many other attractions like the Statue of Liberty, I know it would just be the best.

2. Italy - For a short city break, I think somewhere in Italy would be perfect. I'm so torn between Rome and Italy as both look so beautiful and picturesque and both have been on our list for ages. Whenever I see a picture from someone that has been to either on holiday, I always think that's somewhere we have to go soon. I'd love to visit the Colosseum in Rome and if we went to Venice, we'd have to go on a gondola. I think it would be such a romantic honeymoon if we went to either of these.

3. San Francisco - Of all the places in America, this isn't somewhere I've really thought of much until recently. It's a place I've seen on films loads and always thought it looked nice and would be somewhere to maybe visit one day if possible, but at the moment I'm warming to the idea more and more. This might sound quite strange but I think it's because you can visit Alcatraz Island there which was home to some of America's most notorious criminals. I've got such a strange fascination with prisons and what they're really like inside and have done for a long time so this would be an incredible one to tick off the bucket list.

4. Paris - I suppose Paris is a classic honeymoon destination isn't it? The city of love. From what I've seen online it's actually not too expensive to get there and relatively easy so I think in that sense, this is quite high on our list of options at the moment. I'd love to see the Eiffel Tower lit up at night, go to The Louvre and make a visit to Disney Land Paris. I imagine it would be a very romantic place to go to and for our first holiday abroad, I think it would be really special. Also I'm all about croissants and pastries, so it's kind of the perfect place for me.

5. Amsterdam - I've seen more and more bloggers recently head to Amsterdam for a few days and even though it's somewhere that's always looked interesting, I've now realised how beautiful it is and what sorts of things there are to do there. It's another one that doesn't seem too expensive which is good for us and I just think it would be a really interesting one to visit. I'd love to visit the Anne Frank House while we're there, that's something that has been on my list for a while.

6. Florida - Disneyworld Florida would be the ultimate! We were looking only last year for holidays there this year and while they actually weren't priced as high as we expected, it was still a bit risky so this might be one for in a few years time. I've never been to Disneyworld so this would be a dream come true, and I'd love to go just me and George before we hopefully have kids and take them one day. I already feel emotional at the thought of walking in and seeing the castle, and getting to meet my favourites like Winnie The Pooh and Olaf. It would be such a special honeymoon but I know whenever we go it will be just as incredible.

At the moment I have no idea really where we'll end up but if I had to guess, I'd say it would probably be a city break to either somewhere in Italy, Paris or Amsterdam. Though I do quite like the idea of just a classic beach holiday where we can just sit by the pool all week. Anything would be nice at the moment. I think for a first proper holiday as a couple, all of these would be lovely, but obviously if win the lottery in the next few months I'm jumping on a plane to Florida 😉

Have you visited any of the places on this list? or do you have any other recommendations?

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Friday, 12 January 2018

2018 Blogging Goals...

Last year for the first time I set myself some blogging goals and it was only right I did the same this year! Blogging is just the best hobby but I always think there is room for improvement and I'm always trying to find new ways to get better at this, so setting goals is a massive motivation!
blogging goals
Don't Put Myself Under Pressure To Post - As much as I would love to stick to blogging 5 times a week throughout 2018, it was tough sometimes last year and I just don't want to force myself anymore to post if I'm not feeling it. Last year regardless of how ill I was feeling (which happened pretty much every few months) or no matter what stuff I had going on, I still posted and some days it was so difficult. Even though I usually have posts ready to publish, I don't want to do it if my heart isn't in it and some days it just isn't. I do love having a routine and I'm so proud I managed to stick with it for as long as I did last year but I'm not going to put myself under loads of pressure to post this year if I just don't feel like it because I feel like it shows then to my readers and if I'm not happy reading it, why would others be? I think sometimes it's okay to take a break and if I feel like I need to do that sometimes with my blog this year, I will.

Reach Out To More Brands - Since my blog started I've been quite open to contacting brands and PRs and telling them why I'd love to work with them. I always get nervous beforehand and a huge amount of people have never got back to me, but some have worked out really well and I've formed some brilliant working relationships with people. I definitely cooled it down a bit over the last few months of 2017 because I was planning a wedding, my anxiety was all over the place, and it just didn't feel right to be reaching out to brands, if I wasn't 100% able to give them a great post. Now I'm feeling much better and ready to get back to it. I have an idea of some I'd like to reach out too, and I'm just going to keep an open mind about it all. I feel like 2017 was a brilliant year blog wise for me as I got to work with some amazing brands so I'd really love for that to carry on this year.

Reach 5000 Twitter Followers - I feel like I've been much more optimistic with my Twitter goal this year but I'm really hoping I reach it. Last year I started the year with about 500 Twitter followers and my goal was 1000, I ended up reaching over 2000 by New Year which I was incredibly happy with. I know followers aren't everything but it does help when it comes to reaching out to brands, and just getting your posts out there, so I'd really love to hit a bigger number this year. I think just even getting close to 5000 followers would be amazing!

Reach 2000 Instagram Followers - Again I think I've gone quite high with this one! Last year I aimed for 500 Instagram followers as it's just such a pain to grow but I ended up with over 1100 by Christmas so I'm really hoping over the next 12 months I can double that. With so many people struggling on Instagram at the moment, I'm not sure how likely this is but anything would be a bonus to be honest! I never expected to even reach 1000.

Reach 200 Facebook Likes - Facebook is another platform that I find is a real struggle to grow. I'm not sure what it is, and to be completely honest I don't use Facebook anywhere near as much as I used to, but I would still love to grow my Facebook page. I ended up reaching 100 likes last year so that's another one I'd like to double. I think I've invited the majority of my friend list and I'm not getting too far with that so if any other bloggers would like to help me out that would be amazing. Just to grow this even a little bit would be fab.

Improve My Photography - I had this on my blogging goals last year and I think it's one I'll keep adding each year! I definitely think my blog photos have improved massively since I first started but I'm aware I still have a long way to go. I look at others photos and can't believe how good theirs are, mine just look a mess in comparison so I'd really like to try and get better this year with them. I think photography for me is a bit of a slow one as I'm not too creative but hopefully by the end of the year I'll be more happy with them than I am now.

I don't think I've set myself quite as many blogging goals this year as I'm trying not to put too much pressure on it all but I do still think it's good to set yourself a few. I'm so proud of it and how it's grown, especially in 2017 so let's hope it continues this year!

Have you set yourself any blogging goals?

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Thursday, 11 January 2018

Bakerdays Letterbox Cake Review & Giveaway*

In May last year I collaborated with bakerdays, a brand I'd been wanting to work with for a long time and I got to review one of their Letterbox cakes. You can read my full review here but in short, me and the rest of the family who tried the cake, absolutely loved it and the personalised design was much better than I could have ever expected. As I loved working with them last year, I was so happy when they got in touch and said they'd love to collaborate again this year, and as my birthday was in January, it was kind of a perfect fit! I decided on a cake for myself this year and again, I am so impressed!
bakerdays
If you've not heard of bakerdays before then where have you been?! They are growing and growing in popularity and it's easy to see why. They provide cakes for all sorts of occassions, letting you personalise them with your own message or picture and you can pick from a variety of flavours. All cakes are handmade to order and only the best ingredients are used so there is no need to worry about the quality. Like last time I was sent one of the Letterbox cakes to review, and what is so great about these is that they do just fit through your letterbox with no issues! No worries about if they'll survive the drop to the floor or get through the door, they are packaged securely in a protective cake tin so no damage can be done. 
bakerdays
The design I went for this time was the Panda Cake which I had personalised to say 'Tiffany have a wonderful day!'. Pandas are one of my favourite animals so this seemed like the obvious choice and look how cute it is! Like last time, it looked even better than I expected and it almost looked too good to eat. Almost...now onto the taste which is obviously very important. I went for the traditional sponge flavour this time as last time I went for the chocolate chip and it was just as delicious! It was moist and spongy, not too heavy, and the icing on top was sweet but not overpowering which I find sometimes happens with birthday cakes like this. Everything about it tasted beautiful and there was the perfect amount for 4 of us to share, though you could definitely cut it into smaller slices if you like.
bakerdays
I think these letterbox cakes are such a brilliant idea, they really do taste beautiful and the designs always come out so well. They have such a variety to choose from, including birthday cakes like mine, christmas cakes, easter cakes, new job cakes and so much more, there really is something for every occassion. One of the reasons I think these cakes in particular are so good is because there isn't always time to make your own for a birthday and shop bought ones can be very hit and miss, whereas with these you can really tell so much time, effort and care has gone into each one. The letterbox cakes are priced at £14.99 but they also do small, medium and large cakes so brilliant if you have a party coming up, and even cupcakes and personalised balloons are available to buy! I wouldn't hesitate to order from bakerdays in future, they are so convenient and as you can order up to a year in advance, it takes so much stress away when it comes to birthdays. They also stay fresh for up to 14 days so if you get it a bit early, no need to worry as the cake will still be perfect on the day.
bakerdays
I don't have a bad word to say about bakerdays, they definitely helped make my birthday and I can't wait to try more from them in future. If you have a birthday coming up or another special occassion, make sure to check out their website. You can also enter my GIVEAWAY over on Twitter where you can win your own personalised letterbox cake!

Have you ever tried a cake from bakerdays?

*Letterbox cake sent for the purpose of this post. I only work with brands relevant to me and my blog

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Tuesday, 9 January 2018

My 23rd Birthday...

Birthdays are a bit of an odd thing for me and have been for a few years now. I know most people get so excited about their birthday but I kind of always dread it, especially as it's just after Christmas and I'm always a little bit sad that my favourite time of year is over. Last year I was really down about it and got myself in such a state but this year I like to think I dealt with it much better. Even though I was a bit stressed beforehand, on the day I felt much better than last year and generally so much more positive than I've felt in the past. I ended up having a really nice weekend and even though it was quite chilled and simple, it was just 'me' and really lovely.

My birthday was on Sunday (7th) but we kind of celebrated it on the Saturday instead and made a weekend of it. We went to Pizza Hut for a meal, which is actually exactly what we did last year too, and all of the food was so tasty. I just love Pizza and could eat it pretty much all the time so it was definitely a good choice, and also does anyone else love the salad bar as much as me? I genuinely get really excited about salad bars 🙊 Despite being full from Pizza we opted for Dessert too because who can turn it down? George and I shared the chocolate waffle which was so much better than I expected it to be, the chocolate ice cream and sauce were gorgeous and I could totally eat it all again right now. That night was spent watching horror films, eating yet more food and then on Sunday we just relaxed really.
pizza hut
pizza hut
I opened my cards and birthday presents, and George had totally spoilt me again with very thoughtful gifts. I unwrapped bath bombs from Bomb Cosmetics, including one called Candy Cane Lane which is like the ultimate for me as I love anything minty, and also the Bear Necessities one which is is just adorable. I also got a mini Ghost Eclipse perfume which is beautiful. I love the Ghost perfume bottles, and as this is a mini it means I get to try it out and see if I like it before buying a bigger bottle, luckily I love it! It's the most gorgeous bottle and it reminds me of sunsets, I already don't want it to run out. He also got me the Hunger Games DVD Boxset which I can't wait to watch. I never thought I'd be a fan of the films so I put them off for a long time but after watching them all a while ago, I realised I'd been missing out so I'm so happy to have them all ready to put on whenever now. They're like the Harry Potter films for me, I can just rewatch them and not get bored.
ghost perfume
I also got a few foodie bits which I can't wait to tuck into and the most special present out all, a Paddington print! I mentioned a wedding print the lovely Zoe did for us in a recent blog post, little did I know after that George got in touch as he had an idea for a birthday present and she created this beautiful Paddington Print. I don't need to go on about Paddington, it's one of my favourite films and I just love bears, and I also have a huge love for London so this print is so, so special. I've always wanted some sort of print like this because as I said I just love him, but I could never have expected to open this. It's just perfect, and I've already framed it. It's in the office/spare room on the windowsill so now when I go and blog in there, it's right next to me. Thank you so much Zoe for creating another amazing print! (Link to her Etsy store, you should definitely have a look!)
paddington
After a chilled day eating birthday cake (I got 2 this year, a chocolate one and my bakerdays one which I'll have a review up of tomorrow, so lucky!) and watching films, we ended it with a chinese takeaway and Celebrity Big Brother which was perfect.

To say I don't usually look forward to my birthday, it really was a nice weekend and definitely one I'll remember. I'm hoping each year it will get a bit easier every time and next year I won't be as stressed about it beforehand. 

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Monday, 8 January 2018

The Makeup I Wore On My Wedding Day...

It's no secret if you're a long time reader of my blog that I really don't experiment much with makeup! In fact a lot of the time now I don't even wear it as there's just no need, whereas I used to no matter whether I was leaving the house or not. I'm a lot more comfortable now with what my face looks like without makeup (though right now my skin is having a major tantrum) and it really does no good for my skin when I wear it all the time so it's pretty much just when people are coming round or I'm heading out, that I actually make the effort. Of course for our wedding I wanted to look nice so I started thinking a few months before of how I wanted my hair and makep and that also gave me plenty of time to add any new products in or pick up anything I needed to repurchase. In the end I pretty much stuck to my usual products but there were a few new additions that I'd got in past Birchboxes and also in Boots when we were last in London so I thought it might be nice to do a post about it as I know I'll want to read back on everything about the wedding one day! As always I went for quite a subtle, casual makeup look so if you're hoping to do the same sort of thing, some of these products might be worth considering.
wedding makeup
Starting with the base I used my trusty Rimmel Lasting Finish Foundation. I've not tried another foundation for absolutely ages because I'm worried none will ever live up to this one! It's quite high coverage so really does cover up any spots well and I find it lasts all day. Most of my makeup was applied using my new Real Techniques PowderBleu Brushes and also some of their classic ones, they are my go to brush brand. I then moved onto concealer and the one I picked up especially for my wedding day was the Maybelline Fit Me. This is another product that I can't live without. I've tried several concealers but this is the only one I find really works. It lightens under my eyes, covers spots and blends so easily, it's just the best. For contour and bronzing I stuck with my favourite Seventeen Define and Conquer Contour Kit. This was something else I picked up recently as I had just ran out and knew it was one I would want to use on the day. I'm not massively into contouring and probably don't do it very well, but I find this gives some actual definition to my face and just makes me look a little bit better! I then added a bit of Benefit Hoola Bronzer all over which I find gives me a nice bit of colour and then I used my Rimmel Lasting Finish Blush in the shade Pink Rose on the tops of my cheekbones. The final base products I used were the Manna Kadar 3-in-1 which I use as a highlighter (it's such a fab product, a little bit gives a lovely glow) and then to finish off my Maybelline Matte Maker Powder. I always dust some of this over my face to really blend everything in and just set it all so it stays in place a bit longer!
wedding makeup
Moving onto eyes, I used a standard MUA black pencil eyeliner. Eyeliner is one of those products I can't not use now, it makes my eyes stand out so much and I really do love how it looks. Definitely one of my must have products. I then curled my eyelashes with a Superdrug Eyelash Curler and then added loads of Benefit Roller Lash Mascara. I have a love/hate relationship with this mascara, some days it works so well and makes my lashes look great, other days they just look a clumpy mess. Luckily on the day, it went well! One of the final steps of my makeup was to have a quick brush through of my eyebrows with my Billion Dollar Brows Universal Brow Pencil.
benefit roller lash mascara
The last thing I did was apply some of my favourite lipstick at the moment, the Max Factor Elixir in the shade Burnt Caramel. I've mentioned this a few times on my blog in the space of a month but it's just brilliant! I'm not a big fan of lipstick as I've just never found the right colour for me before really but this is just it. It's a subtle, pink nude colour and aswell as looking pretty, it also feels really moisturising. I'm so glad I got this and it looked okay because it was perfect for the day.
max factor lipstick
To say I did all of my makeup myself and just stuck to mainly drugstore brands, I think I looked okay! I'm usually quite hard on myself but I do think my makeup looked good and most importantly, I felt good. I'm so glad I stuck with my trusty favourites as they didn't let me down and it all stayed on so well throughout the day. I think I'll always be repurchasing these products now!

Have you tried any of these products before?

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Friday, 5 January 2018

2018 Goals...

It's taken me quite a while to think of some personal goals for the year because last years kind of went so bad. I didn't want to set any to just fail again, but if I don't set any, what do I have to motivate myself? So I've managed to come up with a few and I'm really hoping I can do a little better than 2017!
Eat Better - Last year one of my goals was to lose weight but as I explained in my look back on those goals recently, it didn't go to plan so this year my goal is to just eat better. When I start to lose weight because of my anxiety I start to panic that it's because I'm ill, not because I'm actually trying to lose it, so it's a real mental battle sometimes. As much as I would love to lose at least a few stone, I'm not putting myself under too much pressure, I want to get my anxiety really under control for good this year so that's my main focus and along the way I'd just like to get a bit healthier, cook some new meals and generally eat well. I don't think that's too unobtainable as I do love coming up new meals, especially fresh salads and things like that in Summer, and after Christmas, I'm pretty much sick of the sight of bad food.

Save Money - Whenever I do a piece of sponsored content or get some money in, I always feel like I need to spend it straight away and this year I want to stop that. If there is nothing I can think I need or have been waiting to get for a while, then I want to put that money aside. I don't want to just spend it for the sake of it, it would be much better to keep aside for a weekend with family, peoples birthdays or even a little start to a holiday fund. I would like us to one day move house so for that to be done, we kind of need to get a hang of saving money!

Find Part Time Work - Another one I put in my goals last year was to get back to work, and as it's on here again, you can see that didn't go to plan. Again my anxiety was just too bad and there was no way I could have gone back into a working environment. Luckily my blog really started to do well in 2017 so that was a nice way to earn some money but I'm nowhere near being able to make it my proper full time job yet. Ideally something part time in an office would be perfect for me so it's not too full on and I can continue to work on my blog.

Apply To Open University - I wasn't sure whether to put this on here or not as it's a lot of pressure everyone knowing about it but I've been thinking about going back to uni for a good while now and 2018 is the year I'd like to apply again. Obviously my last time at uni didn't go too well, wrong course and I had a lot going on whereas now I've done a lot of thinking and I'm pretty set on what I want to do. It's not a million miles away from what I was at uni for a few years ago, I've got the experience and skills for it, and I think I'd be pretty good at it. Hopefully this will be the year I get back on track with it and make steps to starting a career. Open Uni is perfect for me as I can do it from home and it should fit in well with some part time work if things all go to plan.

Travel More - This kind of depends on money I suppose but I would love to travel a bit more in 2018. We'd love to go on a little honeymoon this year whether that's some sort of beach holiday or a city break, anything would be nice right now! I'd also love to do a few more days out like when we went to Leeds last September and of course I'd like a few weekend breaks to London if possible. Going away for just a few days at a time makes me so happy and it's such a nice way for us to spend quality time together so hopefully they'll be more of that this year.

Get A Dog - This would be a dream come true. We've been thinking about it for ages but it's never felt like the right time but once we were married, it's like something just clicked and then once New Year happened, we thought this year should be the year. As I'm home the majority of the time, I've got the time to settle a dog in and give it all the love and attention it needs, and even if I was to start uni this year, as I'd be from home a lot of the time, we could easily work something out between us. I've always thought I'd be a young mum and as much as I would still love that, it's not always that straightforward and for now a dog is enough. Recently I've started to reassess what our future might be like, and as long as a few dogs are involved, I'm sure we'll be okay. My dream dog would be a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel as that's what I grew up with and he was the most loving dog in the world, or a Golden Retriever though our flat might not be big enough for one of those yet. I've also been looking into adoption too as I'm aware so many dogs need a loving home and I just know we'd be such good dog parents 🐶

I have no idea how many of these goals I'll end up achieving this year, just a few more than 2017 would be a nice bonus, but I think it's important to set goals regardless. These will all give me the motivation for the year and give me something to work towards!

Have you set yourself any goals this year?

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Thursday, 4 January 2018

Essie Advent Calendar 2017...

I'd been wanting a beauty advent calendar for absolutely ages, every year I'd see so many people getting amazing ones to open throughout December and I was always a little bit jealous. I could just never justify paying the amount they are for more products I probably didn't need, that was until I saw the Essie Advent Calendar in Superdrug on offer though for only £10! I am a little bit obsessed with painting my nails and Essie are usually so expensive so there was no way I was missing out and this was genuinely full of products I knew I would use. As I got it so close to Christmas I didn't have to wait a day to open each door and now I'm left with what feels like a million new nail polishes to try!
essie
This was originally £80 in Superdrug which I would never, ever pay for an advent calendar, it then got reduced to £25 which was still out of my price range and then eventually it went down to £10. Once it was at that price, I knew it was too good of a deal to miss. It contained 6 full size polishes which alone are usually priced at around £8, a full size gel couture polish which is usually £9.99, 12 mini nail polishes, a mini gel top coat, a nail polish remover and 3 other nail accessories.
essie
L-R - Fifth Avenue, Mink Muffs, Luxedo, Fishnet Stockings, Disco Doll, Licorice
I am so impressed with the mix of colours in the advent calendar, the full sized ones especially. There are a few colours which are great for Summer and a few which are perfect for Winter, my favourite being the black polish, 'licorice'. I'd been needing a new black nail polish so this came at the right time, it was the first one I used and it applied so well and looked gorgeous on. I love the glittery lilac shade which I think would be perfect for an accent nail, though they are all so pretty and I'm sure will look lovely on. I can't believe how many full sized products I got for just £10!

I didn't have many mini nail polishes but now I have loads to get through, and again so much variety to choose from! I like that there were more glitter colours included in the mini ones as I do love a glittery nail, especially as I just mentioned on one nail to change things up a bit. There are some beautiful blue shades which again are suitable for the warmer months or the colder months, and some really nice lighter colours which would go so well with a tan on holiday! As well as a range of colours, I'm glad there were some nail care items too like the nail file and apricot oil which i'll definitely get use out of.
essie
L-R - Top Coat, Gel Setter, In The Mood Ring, Bobbing For Baubles, Cocktail Bling, Delicacy, Tart Deco, Sil Vous Play Hero, Glow Your Own Way, All In One, Colour Corrector, Apricot Oil, Fiji
I've never tried an Essie gel polish before so I can't wait to use this one, it's the shade Rock The Runway and it looks so perfect for summer! I imagine this would look so nice on toes with sandals, I can't wait to use it. I love wearing gel like polishes as they just last so much longer than normal ones and I don't have to worry about them chipping within a few days. 
essie
I'm so impressed with the Essie advent calendar and I really hope I can get the same sort of deal next Christmas if they do another one. It was such a bargain and for £10, the amount of products I have now is incredible, I'm going to be constantly changing my nails. I'm sure at least a few of these will get featured in monthly favourites or similar posts like that in future as Essie is one of my go to brands and so many of these colours are perfect for me.

Did you manage to grab this when it was on sale?

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Wednesday, 3 January 2018

6 Reasons To Love Winter...

I've done a few posts similar to this one over the last year, like my reasons for loving spring and autumn, so it felt right to do one for winter too. The only one I won't be doing one for is Summer as I just can't stand it but apart from that, the rest are fine! Winter is obviously a special time as it's when Christmas comes around but it's also the time of mine and Georges birthdays, and really I just love the cold so I'd be more than happy for it to stay all year round! There are loads of reasons I love Winter but I thought I'd just list the main 6, let me know if you agree.
Christmas Markets - I just love love love Christmas Markets! After visiting the Manchester one in 2014, it's become a bit of a tradition for us and it's something I look forward to every year. There is just something so special about walking around all of the little market stalls, drinking hot chocolate and eating ALL the festive food. The Manchester one is brilliant and as we didn't get to go back in 2017, it's a must for 2018, though I do love the ones in London too. The one that is on the southbank just gets better and better every time and of course Winter Wonderland is the ultimate. There are so many others I'd love to visit in future too though, apparently Leeds, Bath and Lincoln do really good ones so they are definitely on the list. Christmas Markets are perfect for getting you in the festive mood.

Cold Weather - As I said at the start of this post, I would be happy if it was cold all year round! I just hate in Summer when it's so hot nothing feels comfortable, sleeping becomes difficult and everything just becomes a bit of a chore, or at least it does for me. When it's cold I can go out wrapped up, I can feel cosy at home and I go to sleep so much better under blankets and the duvet. Though we don't often get snow, whenever we do it's always so beautiful to look at, and I also love when frost first starts appearing.

Christmas TV - I absolutely love festive films but I also love the TV programs that are on each year. The classic Eastenders on Christmas Day is a must, it's like tradition now. I also ove the Christmas specials of things like Strictly Come Dancing too and The Bake Off. There are just so many shows that come out around this time of year especially and I love sitting down and watching them after Christmas Dinner, feeling all full and cosy.

Hot Baths - You can't beat a steaming, hot bubble bath can you?! I live for baths in the winter, it just makes me feel so relaxed and sleepy, and there is nothing better than getting out and into fresh PJ's ready for bed. I love to fill it with bubbles and maybe a bath bomb, and then I like to relax with either a magazine or some youtube, and it's just the best. Baths in Summer just aren't the same or anywhere near as enjoyable so I take plenty in Winter.

Cosy Clothes - Scarves, boots, gloves, fluffy socks, I love it all. I love going out in winter all wrapped up with boots over jeans, jumpers and chunky scarves, it's just the best, and it means I get to wear things which tend to just sit in my wardrobe most of the time. I also love getting cosy clothes on at home after being out though, soft pyjamas, dressing gowns and slippers are my favourite.

Sales Shopping - Online shopping is exciting most of the time anyway, but especially in Winter as so many sales start! Just before Christmas you have the sales where you can stock up on cards, gift wrap, decorations, gifts etc for the following year (I managed to pick up a few bits from Paperchase which had amazing reductions) and then obviously after Christmas you have the Boxing Day and January Sales. If there is nothing you need, don't waste money but if you want to get ahead of yourself, there is no harm in stocking up on a few gifts for birthdays and next Christmas, and if you get any money or vouchers as a present, why not treat yourself?! Winter is definitely the best time for bargains.

I already don't want Winter to be over. I feel like Spring and Summer go so slow and then my favourites Autumn and Winter just fly by! I'm already excited for next Christmas, it's over far too fast. 

Are you a fan of Winter?

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