Sunday, 27 September 2015

Perfect blonde is always hard to achieve... I quite like my natural dark blonde hair colour as it's quite greyish and ashy, but I like to have very bright blonde fine highlights to lighten it and add different tones as the darkness of my own hair colour doesn't compliment my skin all that well - I'm quite pale/cool skinned so I suit a lighter ash blonde highlight through my hair to make my skin look less stark and ghostly white! My hair easily goes brassy and yellow if not cared for properly however, and in a perfect world I'd love the palest lilac/silver mermaid hair... ahhh.

I put this picture up on Instagram not long ago but it does need doing again as it's been several weeks. I bought 2 colours of Schwarzkopf Live Color XXL HD Ultra Brights in Purple Punk and Electric Blue to mess with. I tried this DIY toner on a bit of a whim and thought... what's the worst that can happen? So I took a small bowl of conditioner and squeezed a small teaspoon of each of the colours into it and mixed thoroughly. The mix was dark and very purple and I was maaaaybe a little scared. But what the heck. I smothered the bright purple mixture onto my whole head and put on a very ugly shower cap for about 20/30 minutes before washing off. Despite the depth of colour of the mixture in the bowl however, I was left with this lovely and pale ashy, lavender tone with just the odd lilac streak through it. And as my hair had been soaked in conditioner for 20 odd minutes, it felt silky too.

The best thing about this is the tube is usable again and again so as long as you have conditioner your hair can always be re-toned in 20 minutes! The only thing disappointing is the darkness of my natural roots meant they didn't really take the colour as I haven't had highlights done for months now, but the lengths were just a perfect colour for me. I think I'll soon have some highlights redone and then I'll re-tone! I suppose if you upped the dose of colour in the mix you might get an even brighter result. But I'd definitely recommend this method to tone yellowing brassy blonde hair, especially lighter blonde. So easy, cheap and doable again and again!


Saturday, 26 September 2015

Our lounge is my favourite room in the house, probably because it's the main room that's been fully decorated and finished so far. It's just a delightful place to be, especially in an evening. It's a room that is so cosy and warm and gives you one big hug when you walk in. It's full of charm but still quite minimal. However it's taken more than a new sofa and some paint to achieve this feel... the little bits and pieces you accessorise your room with can really change it's ambience, add heaps of character and will ultimately beam with the personality of the people that live in it!

The room has had a few little tweaks and additions in recent weeks that have really finished it off nicely, it's taken some time to finish but a bit of patience in finding the right things has completely upped the cosy factor and made the space it is now.

5 easy ways to cosy up your living space for autumn winter

These super cool cushions have added the pattern we needed and a nice contrast with the white and grey. They're also much more comfortable! I always think the Scandinavian styling goes so well with rustic décor and with the fur throw that we already have, so these cross cushions tie the modern and minimal but still cosy thing together perfectly. The light grey textured chenille cushions are from Next and the white/grey cross "Skandi" cushions are from Primark and were a bargain at only £7.00 each!

Yankee Candle Vanilla Cupcake Jar Medium

I picked up this Vanilla Cupcake Yankee Candle in a cute gift shop called Smart Ideas in Telford. It was one of the "Fragrances of the Month" so was only about £14 rather than £18.99 as this size usually is. As most bloggers do, I LOVE a good Yankee Candle and sweet foodie smells in particular are my favourite... they remind me of my mum cooking when I was younger when our house always smelt like something tasty! The medium size jars are my favourite as I find they seem to burn ALL of the wax whereas the large jars I've had before tend to waste a bit. And this size still lasts for months and months! I love having loads of various candles lit when I'm relaxing at night - the BEST way to get warm and cosy! :-)

Not too many trinkets, but just the odd piece here and there that just can't be resisted when you walk past them in a shop! I love this splattered mercury effect glass and have a couple of different jars, ornaments and candle holders like it. The light twinkles off it. This one was from Listers Interiors in Chester and was only about £3! A few items in the same style but different heights or shapes work well and throwing some metallics into the mix of your other décor adds interest.

I'm sure many of us are the same these days in that we all take tonnes of photographs yet barely ever print them off. Most of them are likely to sit on our smart phones forever! So earlier in the year I made a promise to myself to print all my pictures and start making yearly albums/scrapbooks. The days of sifting through albums and shoe boxes full of old photos sadly seems to have long gone but in my house at least, I want to bring that back. I use the site Snapfish as they're quick, always have discount codes available and the matte print quality is fab. Amongst all of what I printed was this lovely little shot from Christmas Day 2014... this was taken just after we'd got engaged. We saw this frame in Next for about £8 and thought not only did it go well with our space, but we also had the perfect picture to put in it! As much as I treasure photos though, I only like to keep the odd special few in frames or out on display so as not to make the place look cluttered. This one is just enough for now to add some personality and show what stage in life we're at :-)

This could be anything you've spotted that's unusual or handmade, a piece of art you've created, something you were given or something unique to you as an individual/couple. The candle holders in our initials were from Matalan... I think £2 each? I LOVE these, Chris wasn't as in love with them as me but we've kept them anyway... heehee I won! The little black wooden globe was from TKMaxx and had a tag to say it was handmade in India; a steal at only £5! I've always dreamt of having a huge, wonderful antique globe in my home but a really big one will have to wait for the day we have a really big house to match! I don't know why but I am so drawn to them. This little beauty sits atop our fireplace and helps bring together some of the darker elements of the room as well as being a little bit quirky.

So it doesn't always need to cost much, just a little scouting around and some patience to find the perfect pieces is all you need. So for the lovely season that is Autumn, our living space is ready! Let's get cosy!
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Sunday, 8 March 2015

Today is the 1st birthday of our little baby bears, Binky and Ruby. These two sisters have lived with us since they were only nine weeks old and we love them so much; they're not just cats, they're our furry little besties. Binks is full of beans, too curious, a bit naughty bad to the bone and is likely to have the cat form of ADHD should it exist. She has destroyed every toy she's ever been given and plays tug of war with her toy snake; she will growl if she thinks you're winning. She eats almost anything, answers to her name and chases her own tail round in circles (we've nicknamed her Cat-Dog). But she is still the the most loveable little lady who likes nothing more than to lounge on your lap in front of the TV most evenings and follow your every movement. She's also quite partial to a smooch on the lips now and then (*kitty will kiss for Dreamies!*) 

Ruby is very different. She's quiet, cuddly and gentle but a little timid at times and hates the sound of the doorbell. She's not as "in your face" as Binky but when she does have her affectionate moments, she falls head over heels in love with you. She has this little "prance" in her walk where she swings her hips and whips her tail whilst making sounds like a pigeon, with fur so shiny and sleek like a seal! Roo is always first to the food bowl and her chunky little body and swingy belly pouch makes for a lovely spongy cuddle. She's our little black pudding, aww. Happy birthday little stinkies!
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Saturday, 21 February 2015

Mini V Nutrition Mini Shake in Chocolate Silk, Strawberries & Cream and Vanilla c/o

I joined the gym last year and initially just plodded along with cardio... until recently I decided I wanted to get more into weight training as my extra sponge is proving hard to shift! To be fair I'm only a size 10/12 but I'm a rather soft and cuddly 10/12 with no tone or definition whatsoever! For me losing weight or dropping a dress size is of no interest, I just want to improve my shape and lower my body fat percentage. So I'm more interested in weights and protein these days. Lifting weights will tone your body, improve your shape, help you lose body fat and speed up your metabolism. We should all do it when at the gym ladies - don't be afraid, there's no way lifting some 5kg dumbbells is ever going to turn you into a bodybuilder or make you "bulky"... we just don't have the testosterone for that to happen, and besides, building big muscles is actually very hard work and takes real dedication!

I'm sure you'll have seen the Geordie Shore ladies in all the mags recently and the amazing body transformations they've gone through. I don't watch the show itself but I can't help but be inspired by what these girls have achieved! Mini V Nutrition is a new range of protein and supplements by the incredibly fit Vicky Pattison and I was sent these Mini V Shakes in three flavours to try. These bottles are so convenient for on the go as you just fill them up with water and/or milk and shake. I used skimmed milk in mine and was really pleased at how easy to drink they were. I've tried protein before that is so gloopy and thick (bleurgghhh) and has that distinctive protein taste and these are SO not like that - they're smooth and silky and with lovely flavours. The Chocolate Silk is my favourite and the Vanilla tastes like a Milkybar... it's more like white chocolate than Vanilla, mmm. 

The best thing about these is they're very nearly sugar free and give a great dose of protein in one serving (about 27-28g!) so you won't be feeling the hunger for a long while after one of these! I love the simple and clean packaging design and how convenient these are, and they taste great. The only downside is they're quite expensive at £2.99 each so for better value per serving, you'd be much better off buying a larger tub of Mini Whey and a shaker. 

I'd definitely consider purchasing myself a tub of this stuff for the taste alone! Plus, I'm starting to notice teeeeeeny little biceps forming in my arms so I'm keen to eat and drink more protein to hang on to these... one of my long-term goals is to have some nice toned arms in my wedding dress!

Do you use any supplements for your fitness? If you have any recommendations do let me know!
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Thursday, 1 January 2015

This Christmas I got out the sewing box and made a few little felt decorations by hand. As this was our first Christmas in our own home we had to buy everything from scratch so when it came to decorations, every little extra helped fill that tree up!

A few of my lovely gifts. The Ted Baker cosmetic bag is especially helpful... I have used this Ted Baker bag for over a year and as pretty as it is, it's become too small to hold my make up. I don't have any kind of dressing table set up yet so almost all my make up needs to fit in one bag! This one is nice and big and fits the bill perfectly!

Gifts from Lush and Yankee Candle are always appreciated! I had asked for Sleeping Beauty and Cinderella as gifts this year as I haven't seen either film for a long time and I'm trying to create a Disney blu ray collection! I also gave Frozen a go which we watched on Christmas Day evening, it was a very sweet film and I really enjoyed it. I totally get why all the kids wanna be Queen Elsa now!

Some more lovely bits I was given. The furry hot water bottle will do nicely on my snuggly sofa of an evening and these glitter Primark pumps are fab!

Our first Christmas tree! We're hoping on getting a fireplace put in soon however so next years tree may need to be a little bit skinnier!

I got a bit overexcited and insisted on a second Christmas tree, a skinny one for the hallway!

We got some housey gifts this year too seeing as we're suddenly real adults (how did that happen?) Our new spice rack from BHS looks beautiful sat on the kitchen counter and I'll be very pleased to start cooking with it!

Binks and Ruby had themselves a few gifts too for their very first Cat-mas! Some new toys, a kitty stocking each and a special Sheba turkey dinner pot! They sat and observed us opening all our presents and got very involved in the festive season, hahaha! 

Best. Toy. Ever.

...and naturally no decoration was safe from tiny paws and claws!

He received it 2 days late as I'd forgot that I'd hidden it in a drawer (oops) but I made Chris a card inspired by our tiny feline companions, Binky and Roo!

Christmas Day began with breakfast in bed, and it was the baddest, tastiest breakfast ever! teeheehee

On Boxing Day it started snowing :-) only a day late of course...!

And of course, our special day :-)

I went a bit snap happy this Christmas! Now a few more days to relax and then it's back to work and reality on Monday, boo! However, it has been one very nice and very memorable Christmas and it's now onwards and upwards to 2015. Happy new year to you all!
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Tuesday, 30 December 2014

This year is a particularly special Christmas indeed. On Christmas morning my boyfriend of nearly 7 years, Christopher, asked me to marry him and presented me with this lovely ring that he'd chosen for me. For some reason he was very nervous...? (he's the "father" to my cats so obviously I was always going to say yes!) and bless him, he went to so much effort to make sure everything on Christmas morning was just perfect!

Of course, there's no such thing as a perfect relationship and we sometimes argue and of course we irritate each other... I can't bear the way his socks leave black fluff ALL OVER the carpet ALL OVER the house and he hates the way I leave used make up wipes and bits of jewellery scattered everywhere around the place (oops)! I wish he'd do more cooking and he wishes I'd wash more dishes. But aside from the silly stuff, we've seen each other at our very worst and it doesn't ever seem to matter, we still love and stand by each other no matter what. I read this on Pinterest recently and couldn't imagine anything more "us"... we talk like best friends, we play fight like children, we argue like husband and wife and protect each other like brother and sister. That sums it up! Chris, I love you.

Now to enter the scary world of wedding planning and get crazy pinning dresses, cakes and flowers and all that stupid over-the-top stuff. I can't wait!
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