web analytics

Fancy dress, fancy competition!

t6

We are big fans of Halloween in this house, ever since I can remember I have loved doing a pumpkin each year, loving all the scary stories, witches and ghosts! GG was even due on Halloween (but obviously came 3 weeks early!) so we love a bit of fancy dress and face painting! I’m still determined to have a proper adults only Halloween party one year…. need to get round to that!

Pink Lining are holding a competition at the moment to find inexpensive, homemade costumes. They’re looking for sheet ghosts, toilet paper mummies and ever sock octopi! The best costume is going to win a fab Pink Lining Wheelie case!

Now, while I love Halloween and the kids love dressing up, I have to admit our costumes have always been shop bought! Doing the weekly food shop, stick a costume in the trolley for less than £10, done, so I’ve never attempted to make my own before. I had a look at Pinterest and was *AMAZED* at the efforts out there! Thank god I didn’t get the kids to look because I could have been stuck with some seriously complicated outfits! In the end I decided on skeletons. Nice and simple, and they always look good. Plus, it fitted in with the inexpensive side of the comp!

I grabbed two t-shirts from the mens section in Sainsburys, plain black, short sleeved tops for £5 each. Bargain. Then, I printed out a rib template that I found via Pinterest, via Martha Stewart. Good old Pinterest!

To save you from having to cut out the template twice, while the t-shirt is laying flat on the table, pick up two centre points, top and bottom, and fold down the middle so you just have the left side of the front, and the right side of the front (no back) to cut out. The more arty way of attaching the template would have been to stick it with adhesive spray, but I decided to do it free hand and copied the template straight onto the t-shirt with white chalk, this meant that I could also adjust the size of the ribs for The Boy, because his needed to be a lot smaller than GG’s!

t2

Now, in a more organised house you would be able to find your craft knife and use that, you wouldn’t be presented with a clay knife (plastic of course) by your daughter as a suggestion…! If you live in a house like mine, then you’ll have to use sharp scissors to do the cutting out! I started at the bottom and worked my way up, cutting through both sections so they were a mirror image of each other.

t3

Keep going until finally, you open the t-shirt out and you end up with something like this:

t10

We layered ours over a plain white t-shirt to get a better effect, but you could do it the other way round, whatever you like!

No skeleton is worth his weight in bones without a decent scary face so I attempted my own version of face painting, using my own black eyeliner and shadow! Probably would have been better to get a pot of black face paint, which I’ll probably buy for the actual day, but as practices go, this wasn’t too bad for a first attempt! It was just a case of circling the eyes and filling them in with black eyeshadow, then drawing on the jaw, cheekbones and colouring in the nose. I was quite pleased with myself!

t5

There we have it! My very own scary (if slightly grumpy?) skeleton! All for £5. We’re going to team it with some black skinny jeans and a couple of accessories and he’s good to go. I might even make myself one! If you want to enter the competition, all you need to do is make your own costume, take a picture of it and upload it to the Pink Lining website. You can find all the comp details here.

t8

t7

t11

Read More

Beach, please.

I AM GOING ON HOLIDAY IN LESS THAN A WEEK!!!

Yeah baby! We’re getting on a plane, we’re leaving the UK and we are chasing the sun! It’s been a long time coming this holiday, The Boy has never been on a plane and GG has only got as far as Ireland on one, so to say we’re excited is a slight understatement!

The packing will commence next week, and I’ve already been stockpiling some goodies to take with me, top of that list are the proper beach things, I’m talking Designer Swimwear baby, all in one place – beach cafe –  Ta Dah!!

Beach

 

I want every.single.thing here! It’s not often I get to daydream about laying on a beach, sunglasses on, book in hand, cocktail to the side (can you picture that scene?!) but it’s in touching distance now, so to go along with my daydreams, I thought I’d do my dream beach look.

1: Seafolly Halterneck Bikini £88

2: Kabuki Bloom Triangle Bikini £83

3: Hipanemas Madness Bracelet £95

4: Taylor Morris RJ Mitchell Sunglasses £145

I’m not that brave sadly, so this really is my wish list, my “wish I was bikini brave” list! Accessories though, all over those! I’ve even got some temporary tattoos by Flash Tattoos, in gorgeous metallics that last 4-6 days, they’re not your usual temporary tats either, think geometric shapes, jewellery, stars, I will probably cover myself in them! And, no doubt the kids will be having their fair share of them too. I bet I even get one on the bloke. Did I mention we got new tattoos the other week, and now he is addicted as me and is already planning his next two or three tattoos! *HOT*

I have the MOST amazing beach bag by Lemlem that is going to be earning it’s keep and going everywhere with us. Handwoven, pink, white and blue stripes with a bright, clashing print interior. It’s got pockets on the outside for easy grabbing of the purse, suncream, glasses, whatever and it’s HUGE so the whole day can get thrown in there ready to go.

I’ve got a stack of magazines that haven’t been read, a book that I want to grab at the airport – Love Virtually by Daniel Glattauer – and no other plans whatsoever! We just want to sit on the beach, play in the sea, do a bit of sightseeing and just relax the hell out for the whole 7 days. I expect there will be a lot of alcohol, some really good food and plenty of freckles!

I’m counting down the days……!

 

Read More

Beauty Addict

bathroom2

I’ve written about how I need to get our bathrooms into a decent, ship shape plenty of times, and we’re finally get somewhere with it now since we bought some shelves and did a little style up, but they’re still not quite right. Since having this blog I have been able to test out some of the best products out there, and now my bedroom and bathrooms are groaning under the weight of beauty. I watched a Sali Hughes video the other day & was literally (yes, literally) drooling over the bathroom furniture she has! Shelves and shelves all dedicated to products she loves, needs to trial, family stuff, there was just room for everything. Of course, her bathroom is three times the size of mine, so I need to be more creative with space, I can’t just whack a huge apothecary in there, as much as I *really* want to.

For the downstairs loo, it just needs to be something small and compact, ideally under the sink but it’s like a midget sink in there, if you’re a borrower you might find the size suitable, so wall units it is! Upstairs however….! The ‘family’ bathroom as we like to call it (sounds so much posher than it really is!) needs something tall and skinny to just fit in the space without overpowering it, obviously, in white. This wall unit is perfect and I love the little space in between the cupboards for displaying something fancy! It would fit really well just next to the bath and it would mean we could hide away some of the cleaning products that annoy me!

In our shower room though, I want (and probably need to be fair!) lots and lots of storage! Under the skink would be a great place to start, again, for the cleaning stuff (listen to me, anyone would think I like to clean – I don’t) and spare loo rolls etc, nothing fancy, just proper storage, hidden out of view. Then on top of the sink, dum dum duuuum, I am in *love* with illuminated cabinets! Just picture the old style dressing table mirrors – perfect! We have no windows in the upstairs bathrooms so when I do my make up I have to pray for some sunlight in the bedroom, with this, well! Killing two birds with one stone – storage AND lighting.

bathroom4

Never let it be said I’m not economic.

I’m picturing all my products stacked up in clear boxes, clearly labeled so I can just grab and go, the (huge!) sink clear of clutter and a place to really zone out in. And then, the shelves I have in the bathroom become free to fill up with more goodies…..!

Image Source 1

Image Source 2

Sponsored Post

Read More

October 2014 Birchbox with Coppafeel

box1

I love a good beauty box, ever since they first came out and I started subscribing I have been hooked. There have been, of course, a couple of not so good ones, which did put me off for a while, but the competition between them all is quite strong, so the good ones seem to up their games!

October is breast cancer awareness month, so it was really good to see a pink Birchbox land on my doorstep this weekend. There are 7 products included in the box, as well as a great leaflet on how you should check your breasts for early signs, and how often you should do it. The more it’s discussed openly and freely, the quicker it will become normal for women to check their breasts and notice anything out of the ordinary. There is also a little guide to each product and quick instructions on how to use them.

The first difference this month is the all the products are inside a cute little pink make up bag instead of Birchbox’s usual drawstring bag. I love this little pouch, it is perfect handbag size.

box2

Inside the bag there are some really good products, I have to admit, last months box didn’t grab my attention, but this month is so much better. The first thing I noticed was the Pixi Shea Butter Lip Balm. I love Pixi products so I knew this would be good! The colour is perfect, not too bright. It’s full size and worth £8. This one is going to be kept in my bag at all times.

Next up is the KMS California Free Shape Hot Flex Creme (£15.50 for full size) it smooths curls and waves (perfect for me in this ever so slightly damp weather!) You just apply to towel dried hair and comb through before blowdrying. It smells delish!

One product I’d not heard of before is the Shaveworks The Cool Fix (£11 FS) it’s a cooling gel lotion that treats ingrown hairs, razor bumps and redness after hair removal. You apply it generously to dry, clean skin after waxing or shaving morning and evening until the irritation goes away. If this works, I am stocking up on this baby!

The Balance Me Cleanse and Smooth Face Balm will probably go straight to GG. She loves Balance Me products, and I like the fact that they’re 100% natural on her skin. This is a cleanser with exfoliating oatmeal powder, for normal to dry skins. (£20 FS)

Last on the skincare list is a sample of Cindy Crawford’s Meaningful Beauty Glowing Serum (£30.95 FS) I’ve been lucky enough to try this range in the past, but it disappeared off my radar for a while, so it’s good to see it again. It’s described as a sumptuous, radiance enhancing anti ageing serum from Dr Sebagh and Cindy. You’re meant to use it in the morning before moisturiser or anytime of day for an instant pick me up. Looking at pics of Cindy at George Clooney’s wedding, you can’t argue that whatever she uses on her face is working!

box3

And by no means least, a funky little pink pen in the shape of a lipstick. I am hiding this baby because I know it will get ‘borrowed’ by my daughter and never be seen again! It’s going straight into my bag for me alone!

I really think the October box has been a huge success, and with the contents coming to almost £40 for a £10 subscription, you can’t really argue with the value. Even the sizes of the samples are good, the serum can fit in my make up bag alongside the lip balm and the pen.

You can subscribe to Birchbox here and find out more about Coppafeel here.

Read More

Do you meditate?

meditate2

Those who know me know how much of a highly strung, tightly wound, ball of stress I am. It’s not something I actively try to achieve, it’s just who I am. I’d love to be a calmer, un-stressed version of myself, and since starting this blog I’ve been shown so many ways that could help, but I think I’m the kind of person who needs to do something daily, rather than weekly or monthly.

One of my favourite places in London, Anamaya, have created a meditation app because so many of their clients wanted to take some time out to meditate but couldn’t manage to fit in a meditation class. It has over 360 guided meditations, with mindfulness exercises, visualisations and learning resources covering the science and psychology of meditation.

While we all love, and are addicted to our high-tech, mobile world, it’s actually causing us more stress than it cures, we’re all constantly switched “on”. The Anamaya app is designed to help people sit still and listen, to think about their mental state.

The course is divided into 11 focuses to allow the user to develop meditation skills to suit them, it has General Meditation, Relax, Loud Brain (this is mine!) Concentrate, Worry, Anxiety, Stress, Anger, Pain, Pregnancy and Sport to choose from, with the levels being split into 4 sections. The user can track the amount of time spent meditating and it records that, as well as how regularly you do it, showing you the statistics, telling you when you need to meditate more!

It’s available from the App Store for £15, which is an annual subscription – less than a tenth of the price of a course of meditation classes in London. It was launched on the 1st September this year, and is set to be a huge success. I really want to get back into yoga and pilates, for the health benefits but also for the switch off time, so I would look at doing this as well, something that I could keep using in between exercise classes, to keep that calm feeling that only a yoga class can give you, going. Which can only be beneficial to me, and my poor family who have to put up with me when I’m in stress mode.

PicMonkey Collage

Read More

Kahina Giving Beauty – Fez Hand & Body Balm

hand balm2

I am balm obsessed. Cleansing balms obviously started the love affair off, there is something about scooping out a dollop of solid balm and massaging it in until it’s almost liquid. Maybe it’s because it feels like you’re really applying it well, who knows! I’ve been smothering the husband in coconut oil, which is almost balm like and now there is Kahina Hand & Body Balm. Inspired by the mysterious and exotic city of Fez, Morocco, it’s a nourishing and soothing balm that will instantly restore and soften severely dry, chapped skin. A rich blend of argan oil, carrot seed oil, shea butter, coconut oil, olive oil and mango nut butter creates a velvety base that deeply moisturises and naturally soothes irritated skin. Infused with calendula, known for its anti-inflammatory and powerful healing properties, the Fez Hand & Body Balm can be used on hands, feet, elbows and any other areas in need of softening and deep hydration. Scented with Kahina’s signature Fez fragrance, the balm leaves behind a subtle earthy, warm scent to calm the senses and ground the spirit while leaving the skin soft and radiant.

I’m really suffering with my hands (well hand) at the moment, I’ve been allergic to my wedding rings on and off for a while, but it’s gone a bit mad for some reason and I can’t even wear them for a day. It looks like I’m allergic to gold, and that’s all gold, including my gorgeous white gold engagement ring (sad, sad face) My ring finger is red raw, with horrible little pin prick blisters that are drying up (attractive no?) so I have been trying to keep it moisturised without irritating it more. The Fez hand balm has been a *lifesaver* I have it next to my mac, take a tiny blob and rub it into my finger whenever it starts to feel sore. Because I’m not smothering my whole hand in cream I’m not getting that horrible sticky feeling which I hate.

hand3

 

Fez Hand & Body Balm is available from beingcontent.com for £35.00

PR Sample

Read More

Slimming World take 3….?

I should be a complete and utter Slimming World expert by now. Having followed the plan before falling pregnant with TB, and again straight after having him (and losing 3 stone of baby weight) I had it nailed and was *this* close to target, but, like always, life got in the way, I couldn’t always get to group and once you miss a group here or there, you end up not going at all and we all know what happens then!

2 stone back on and ready to start again!

This time round I know what I need to do, I don’t have any external pressure, no need to “fit back into my jeans” (mostly because I want to buy new ones) and I’m not putting myself on a time limit. I’m ok as I am, but I do feel happier, personally, when I’m a dress size smaller. I’m not aiming to get down to a size 10 because quite frankly I can’t be arsed. I like good food, nights out and fun and I don’t want to spend the best part of my life battling against myself. So, I’ve decided to go back to the plan that worked for me and get inventive. I hate being bored, so I can’t stick to 3 meals repeatedly. I think I’m quite a good cook these days and I have a little bit more time now both kids are older (and they’re both willing to try new things) so we can get creative in the kitchen.

For those of you not familiar with Slimming World, it consists of 3 plans (mostly), Red days, Green days and Extra Easy. EE is their newest plan, but so far I haven’t had much success with it. I seem to maintain each week when I follow EE, which would be great if I were at target! So, my idea is to follow red and green throughout the week, and EE at the weekend, viewing it as my ‘treat’ meals, even though they’re still full on Slimming World style.

I’ve been through their newly released Extra Easy Express cookbook, and I’ve found PLENTY to keep me going, along with good old faithfuls like jacket potatoes, pasta, and steak night There is absolutely no reason why this won’t work, it’s all completely do-able. It’s just a case of getting my mind to keep up with my body! Or vice versa maybe?!

I am using the online membership for the next 4 weeks, to see how much I can lose and how I find it and my plan is to blog my favourite meals, and check in each week with my losses (yeah, not sharing my actual weight with you!) Hopefully, by the time we get on that plane to Spain, I’ll be well on my way to my goal weight.

Fingers crossed!

 

Read More