Summer wardrobe..

29.6.10

Over the past month or 2 I've picked up a few bits and bobs for the Summer months, and before I packed them away for my holiday I snapped a few of them to share with you. I already have quite a lot of nice Summery things from my holiday to Florida last year so I didn't go too mad this year.

River Island has been very popular with me recently. There is a store a hop, skip and a jump away from where I work so I often pop in for a browse. Recently their selection of maxi skirts and floaty tops has been brill! Not to mention they had some lovely bikinis last time I checked.

Gold sandals - New Look


Peach bikini - Next


Floral harem trousers (as seen on Fearne Cotton!) - George @ Asda


Colour block maxi dress - River Island


Maxi skirt - River Island


Salt of Mine Wet n Dry saltwater - GOSH Professional


Slouchy cream tee - River Island


Bargain white vest - George @ Asda


I'm constantly on the look-out for nice plain vests as they're great for layering, wearing under sheer tops and are nice on holiday to dress up or dress down. I'm not sure how long this one will last but it's lovely material and fits like a glove so for a couple of pounds I don't mind if it doesn't last long.

The sandals are lovely - I have been after a pair of simple gold sandals for a while and these fit the bill. Plus I got them when New Look were doing a 20% off sandals promotion so they were under a tenner in the end!

The maxi dress is my favourite buy. It's really floaty jersey material and flattering on my shape. I can't wait to wear it!

The floral harem trousers are totally NOT me but I thought they would be brill for lounging around in and I could pair them with a white vest or white slouchy tee. They're so comfy!

What have you bought for your holiday this year?

Jo Hansford - Intensive Masque

28.6.10

I love this Jo Hansford hair mask for several reasons. The packaging is sophisticated and simple, it smells DIVINE, a little goes a long way, it is Paraben free, and it makes my hair unbelievably shiny and silky-soft.

The downside is the price. At £25 it's not cheap by any means. Luckily for me I was sent it very generously from Jo Hansford to try out and review on my blog and I'll be very sad once it has run out. Although, I would be very tempted to re-purchase it because it's a great product. At this kind of price it's more likely to go on my Birthday/Christmas list.



The consistency is really thick but that's a good thing because it doesn't get caught under the shower and drain away. I find it works best for me when I comb it through my hair with a wide-tooth comb and leave it for as long as I can before rinsing. I notice a difference, compared to regular conditioner, straight away. It instantly makes my hair manageable and soft, which after 6 years of being blonde is not easy to do!

I love that it's light enough to use every day, as I find other masks can leave a bit of build up if they're used too often.

This is a great product and has made me interested in other Jo Hansford products.

Weekend summary (& 5 good things)

With all the excitement of a day off work and holiday preparations I almost forgot it was Monday! Silly me. Today has involved a much needed trim (and a sad faced Victoria as I realised my fringe is nowhere near as grown out as I need it to be to do anything useful with it! Must persevere and grow it out), tidying the house from top to bottom, washing and drying everything we want to take on holiday, and this evening we need to pack it all. Plus before tomorrow night I need to give 3 dogs a bath, locate my passport, write a couple of blog posts and do last minute checks. I'm such a worrisome traveller!

I'm currently taking a break to write this and sipping on an ice-cold Green Monster. The spinach needed using up and it was looking a little odd but it tastes ok, I think!

The weekend flew by for me. It involved eating lots of yummy BBQ food, cheering on England (then crashing back down to reality after their RUBBISH performance), going shopping for new clothes and lots of sleep! The warm weather is welcome but boy it is so hard dressing for this weather don't you think?


Here are my 5 good things this week:

1) Of course number 1 has to be going abroad, somewhere hot and sunny, getting to see my Sister and her boyfriend (and their two new pooches) and generally having a good time!

2) I've had a couple of compliments lately saying I've lost weight and look much slimmer. Result! Recently I've been eating really well Monday to Friday (and not struggling. I've actually wanted to eat nice healthy things!) and on a weekend having treats, the odd takeaway, etc.

3) I had a money off coupon for my haircut, so the fact it looks pretty much the same as it did before doesn't feel quite so bad.

4) I'm feeling brave and have a maxi dress AND a maxi skirt for my holiday.They look fab, I just need more confident to wear new things.

5) After our holiday I have a few more days off work which is great because I've got loads I want to do - I want to finish de-weeding the garden and put some planters around the edge, paint the kitchen, go strawberry picking and perhaps go to Eden Camp. Love that place!

My suitcase won't pack itself! Speak to you soon :)

Currently obsessed with:

27.6.10

Huge rings

Eating oranges

Songs From The Tainted Cherry Tree - Diana Vickers

Duck egg blue

 Onken's Coconut yoghurt

 Plans to go strawberry picking & make delicious puddings

Lighter hair at the ends a la Alexa Chung

Miscellaneous photos from www.weheartit.com & Google image search

Reasons to love beer!

26.6.10

This is a bit of a different post for Lily loves Lola but they say variety is the spice of life! When I was given the opportunity to test out some tasty beer targeted at ladies I couldn't say no! The beer in question is Kasteel Cru Rose and I can honestly say it is the tastiest beer I have ever had.

In my younger days I would drink anything (sambuca in a pint anyone?) but now I tend to save alcohol for special occasions and I find it hard to pick what to have. Wine is a no-no. Spirits are out. And beer just seems a bit.. manly! This is the perfect solution! Kasteel Cru Rose is light, sparkling and crisp. It's the perfect girly beer and tastes absolutely delicious - plus it's pink! I will definitely pick up a few bottles of this next time I'm at the supermarket.


Reasons to beer in 2010 according to Bittersweet:

Good for the skin
Add dark beer to your bath to improve the quality and lustre of your skin. Beer can exfoliate the skin without the harsh abrasion, strengthening it along the way.

Good for hair
Beer can add body and shine to dull hair. Use once a month on it's own as a conditioning hair mask. Alternatively, invest in LUSH Cynthia Sylvia Stout shampoo (more on this soon!)

Impress the males
A study of 2,000 men highlighted that they perceive female beer drinkers as more confident (31%), fun (26%) and independent (23%).

Trendy tipple
More female celebs are choosing beer as their drink of choice. At a recent London bash Jodie Kidd was spotted enjoying a Kasteel Cru, and at the Bittersweet garden party this summer, CBB star Nicola T said "I love to drink a pint of beer. Or even better, beer in a cocktail!"

Cooking companion
Well-made beers are a great source of flavour, just like stock, and have a variety of tastes that make them perfect to cook with. They also give a much lighter finish than the usual heavier alcohols.

Tickles the tastebuds
There's so much more choice when it comes to beer than there has ever been before. Dark beers, low calorie options, fruit beers... Our favourite is Kasteel Cru - a crisp and zesty lager, delicate and light on the palette and brewed using a sparkling yeast from famous vineyards in Northern France.

Cutback on calories
Beer is lower in calories compared to some other alcoholic drinks so a great choice if you're watching your figure. For example; a 330ml bottle of beer (5%abv) contains 142kcals whereas a 250ml glass of champagne (10%abv) contains 190kcals.
Cheers!

Race for Life 2010 - Leeds

25.6.10

As most of you will know I took part in the Race for Life in Leeds last weekend and it was a fab day! I woke up feeling nervous and anxious about whether I would be able to complete the 5k (I really hoped I would be able to run the whole way). Once I got there I felt much better. It's not a competitive event; just a way for females of all ages to get together and raise money for a great charity!

Like a total wally I forgot my camera! I was snapped by Radio Aire but the photos haven't appeared in the gallery so I'm really cross with myself. I normally take my camera everywhere with me! Andrew's job to be chief photographer went out the window! Instead he stood with Lola and waited for me to finish (I think Lola was a bit of a chick-magnet for him) and got a few snaps on his iPhone.

I started off really well. I decided to start off jogging slow and steady in the hopes I could gain momentum towards the end. After an eternity we passed the 1k sign. And then came the hill. Now, I have jogged up hills before but this damn thing was almost vertical! I had to take a short break to get myself up it and at this point I realised 5k was a lot longer than I originally thought!

BUT.. I managed to jog the last 3k non-stop which I'm really proud of as it's the longest I've run non stop, ever! Here we are afterwards having a well-earned sit down and a chomp on the treats in our goodie bags. Boy I was knackered!


It was a really great day and I would definitely take part again. I got fit and had fun at the same time - what more could you ask for! 

Did you take part this year? Maybe see you there next year!

Photos from the day: Radio Aire gallery



The Boy Who Murdered Love

24.6.10

I love this song!

Very veggie

22.6.10

The weather has been so warm today that I have been totally off my food except fruit and veg. Hey, it could be worse! :) I hate it when the weather is so stifling and my little car is like a microwave! :( It's not fun!

For brekkie today I had a bowl of Special K (actually it was the supermarket's own brand which is around 1/4 of the price and tastes just the same!) with a dash of Soya Milk. I have stocked up on Soya Milk because I use it to make Green Monsters, although I would love to give Almond Milk a go next time. It's not as easy to find though. I wanted a Green Monster for brekkie but the supermarket had no bananas last night (no bananas!!) so I had to grab some today. By the way, the GM I have is the Virgin recipe. 1 cup of soya milk, 2 cups of spinach, 1 banana, and ice. Whizzed together. Yum!

I got hungry mid-morning but I was so busy at work that I didn't really have time to stop, and a cup of tea had to suffice. We have a chocolate box at work but not many people go in it and I don't want to be known as the chocolate box girl, you know?

I had a big ol' salad for lunch (a pre-prepared one) which contained lettuce, sweetcorn, onion, and carrot - it was yummy. I added some ham and a splodge of extra light mayo to make it more interesting. I would have preferred a vinaigrette dressing but I didn't have much time to put one together.


Tea was cooked by the boyfriend, but it was my idea, so a joint effort I say. We had peppers stuffed with garlic & herb Philadelphia with an added bit of onion sprinkled with breadcrumbs. With the peppers we had some new potatoes with a sprinkle of mint. One pepper would have been enough but they were very tasty! I ate them both obviously :) Plus I had potatoes left over to pop into a salad tomorrow lunchtime. Nothing goes to waste in our house!


My eating habits have really changed over the years. There was a time when grilled peppers would have made me hurl, but now I actually crave them! I also used to hate mushrooms with a passion but now I look up recipes such as this and my mouth waters! How times change :)

How have your eating habits changed since you were younger?

Monday summary

21.6.10

Good evening. How are you? As the World Cup takes over our television once again I'm forced upstairs to catch up on reading blogs and writing blog posts. But I'm not complaining!

I have just been to the supermarket for Green Monster supplies and I'm heading out with the dogs soon for a little walk. I love warm evenings like these.. I am always so much happier in the Summer.


My 5 good things this week are:

1) I had a great time at Race for Life on Saturday (full blog post coming soon - promise!) There was a great atmosphere and it was a really fun day.

2) I have a Babooshka headband! I've wanted one for ages especially after seeing Lily in hers. I might take some piccies and put them on here unless I look like a bit of a loon!

3) I get to see my Sister soon (she lives abroad). It will be nice to have a catch up and meet her 2 new rescue dogs!

4) Big Brother's return. I mainly watch to see John James. Pervert? Me? Yep!

5) My Mum and Dad are coming over on Sunday for a belated Father's Day dinner. Now all we need to do is think up something tasty to cook! Ideas on a postcard please!

L.O.V.E


Photos found on www.weheartit.com

Greedy Pug

20.6.10

What do you get when you mix a Pug with an empty yoghurt pot?


Yoghurt-y whiskers!

Greedy Lola...

Green fingers and green monsters

17.6.10

Thanks to those of you who 'liked' my last blog post via Facebook. If you didn't see it, click here, and all you have to do if you want to help out is click the 'like' button at the bottom of the blog post. It's part of a Next bloggers competition and the idea is to get as many clicks as possible. I had 50 last time I looked which is awesome. You guys are so kind!

This week has been quiet for me. It has mainly involved a variation of going to work, eating, walking the dogs, jogging, and consuming Green Monsters! I have had one almost every morning this week. I even printed out the recipe and gave it to a couple of people at work. Spread the love I say! If you have tried one recently let me know how you got on. I have been sticking with the Virgin recipe (minus the flaxseed which I haven't got hold of yet) but I'm tempted to try some of the other recipes.


I got talking to a chap at work who commented on the green concoction I was drinking (he thought it was avocado!) and it turns out he grows all types of fruit, veg and herbs from his back garden! In fact he was quite the expert on spinach and offered to give me some seeds to start growing my own. Apparently once it starts growing it grows like crazy. Now all I need is something to put it in. I can sense a trip to the Garden Centre coming! I've always fancied discovering my green fingers and growing veg from our garden. I'll keep you posted on this!


It has been a little bit too warm for the dogs this week; cue lots of panting, lazy behaviour and hiding round the house. Lily likes to keep watch at the top of the stairs. Bless her. She is just adorable! Lola likes to sunbathe in the garden and Geri has a spot under a bush in the corner of the garden (and when she reappears she's usually covered in little flower buds!)

Gosh look at those weeds. It really is an ongoing battle between me and our back garden!




It's almost the weekend! (Hooray!) Tomorrow night, as I'm sure most of you know, England are playing football so Andrew is invited some friends over and I will unfortunately be giving the pizza and beer a miss in favour of an early night. Boring you say? Well I have got a big day on Saturday! I'm running my first ever 5k and I'm super nervous! I'm hoping the momentum of the day and the supportive crowds will spur me on to run most of the way.

Have a great evening!

Is how you wear it as important as what you wear? (I need your help!)

15.6.10

First things first ladies (and gents) keep reading, and if you like what you read click on the 'like' button at the end of this blog post. I would appreciate it very much so. You see I'm taking part in a bloggers competition for Next so I need your support!

The question I'm asking is; "is how you wear it as important as what you wear?" My answer is "yes!"

Exhibit A: Kate Moss


Let's break down what she is wearing. Essentially it's just a plain vest, plain jacket and some shorts with a black bag and black pumps. But throw in some dark Raybans, a rugged boyfriend and bags of confidence and you get a stylish outfit that I, as a mere mortal, could not recreate (plus I don't have the legs for it).

Exhibit B: Nicole Richie


Nicole Richie, Queen of the maxi dress, ignores the "you can't wear a maxi dress if you're short" rule. Whether it's a floral bandeau concealing a baby bump or a boho strappy number she looks fabulous and exudes confidence.

As Gok would say, it's all about the confidence. And it's so true! A little bit of confidence can pull off that tricky playsuit or those killer heels you've been hiding in your closet or even help with adding some accessories to a plain outfit to make it look fab-u-lous!

It's not about spending a fortune in Harvey Nichols to keep up with the trends. It's about wearing what suits YOU and your shape. I know people who shop religiously in Primark or only buy from charity shops, but they look amazing ALL the time. It's about knowing how to dress up or dress down an outfit with a couple of small changes. Do high waisted trousers make your bum look big? Don't wear them then! Find a style that disguises your bad bits and shows off your amazing bits. Knowing that you look a dress size smaller in an amazing outfit will give you bags of confidence, even if it only cost you £20 - including the shoes!

* * *

Finally, if you fancy yourself as a model in the making you should definitely enter Next's latest competition. Here's a link to the Facebook page which tells you all about it, and most importantly you can read about the prizes. A £2000 shopping spree? Yes please!!

Get clicking:

 

Monday summary

14.6.10

Evening campers! How are you? My Monday hasn't been overly exciting. Nothing too special to report I'm afraid! So, straight onto my 5 good things of the moment!

1) There are 5 days until the Race for Life! Aah! I'm so excited about it but very nervous at the same time. I really hope I manage to jog most of the way. That would be a huge achievement for me. A couple of months ago I couldn't jog for 5 minutes. Now I'm out and about for 45 minutes and I feel great!


2) The holiday countdown is on. Just a couple more weeks of work then I have 2 glorious weeks off!

3) After months of struggling with a foundation totally the wrong colour I have been matched up with a different one and all is right in the world again. No more face/neck mismatch here! Very superficial (but important!)

4) Fruit. Officially loving it right now! Favourites of mine are oranges, bananas and apples. I try to have at least 2 pieces of fruit a day, plus a home-made smoothie, and veg with my tea which means I usually get my '5 a day' - go me!


5) Lily. Just coz! :)

My first ever Green Monster (plus an amazing blogger!)

I recently discovered an amazing blog and I can't believe I have only just stumbled across it. I'm addicted to blogs containing recipes and healthy hints and tips, and I love finding people who seem really down to earth and passionate about blogging. Cue Angela, from Oh She Glows, who had me reading her blog for absolutely ages when I first found it.

Ever since then something has clicked with me and now all I want to eat is good stuff (ok, apart from pizza and a couple of beers on Saturday night). Last week I was eating fruit and veg like I used to eat chocolate and crisps. I have cut down on normal tea and drink more camomile tea and plain old water. I have also started to wake up 20 minutes earlier on a morning (a handful of times a week) to do the 30 Day Shred dvd before work. And of course I'm still going strong with my training for Race for Life (which is this weekend btw!)

Angela is a HUGE inspiration. Her healthy lifestyle really makes me want to get my ass into gear, plus... now I know of The Green Monster!


As soon as I read about these I rushed out for supplies. 2 cups of spinach, 1 banana, 1 cup of soya milk and a little bit of ice later and I had produced my first ever Virgin Green Monster. It looks disgusting but it tastes lovely! There's no taste of spinach at all.. it's just like having a banana smoothie. What a great way to sneak in a portion of your Five a Day! I have had one almost every day since and they're just divine. Packed full of goodness, they're a great way to start off the day. Believe it or not, after my jog on Saturday morning I turned down a full English breakfast for one of these smoothies!

Oh She Glows is a great place to head when you want a healthy recipe or some workout inspiration. It just shows that eating healthy food can be fun and tasty. It's not all lettuce leaves and starvation! Happy reading. x

Eyeko: Coral Polish

13.6.10

This is one of the polishes sent to me by Eyeko and up until now I've had mainly good things to say. Unfortunately, the Coral Polish was a real disappointment. Normally I love bright corals and pinks but this shade is too much like tomato soup. The consistency is very thin so it's really tricky to achieve a neat finish. The positives are that it dries really quickly and is a lovely bright colour for Summer but you definitely need 2 coats to cover the white tips on your nails. And we all know what a lazy nail-painter I am! The picture below is just one coat.

Perhaps I'll give this one another shot when the sun reappears, maybe on my toes-ies :)

Eyeko polishes are £3.50 and available from the website.

'Face the facts' - £1 facial screening

I'm really excited to share this with you as it's a fabulous promotion AND it is raising awareness for the rise in skin cancer so I'm more than happy to get involved and spread the word about this fantastic deal.


SK:N clinics nationwide are offering £1 'Face Facts' facial screening assessments to everyone. 100% of the proceeds go to the British Skin Foundation. The assessments normally cost £25 but you can take advantage of the special offer until the end of August this year.

The session consists of an in depth chat with a skin expert to ascertain skin type and skin care habits as well as a thorough assessment under a UV lamp which clearly shows existing sun damage and identifies any other problem areas or changes to the skin.

I think this is a great idea and I really want to book an appointment for myself! Summer is approaching and I often worry about the effects of the sun on my skin. Even though I always apply sun cream I suppose we don't know what's going on deep down and whether we're applying enough! I think having one of these assessments, especially if you're in your 20s like me, would be a great way to catch any damage in time and change your sun-protection ways!

Her name was Lola. She was a... Pug!

10.6.10


 Lola is a very naughty Pug indeed.

She likes barking at animals on the telly (her favourites are horses and Felix the Cat).

She is very greedy and sometimes pinches her Sisters food.

She has a dirty habit of eating things she finds on her walk like cigarette ends and chewing gum!!


She loves to cuddle.

She likes to chase after Geri on the field, but refuses to chase after a ball or a stick.

She looks after Lily.

She snores.. louder than most humans.

She is very cute and we love her to bits. I hope you agree!

Monday summary

7.6.10

Good evening blogettes. How are you? I'm so tired. I've had 7 hours of training today and my little head wanted to explode when I got home. After writing this I've still got all the washing up to do plus my jogging, but I actually WANT to do it. Go me!


Today's pictures are all tea related because, quite frankly, I didn't have enough of the stuff today.All pictures have been lovingly borrowed from www.weheartit.com

My 5 good things:

1) Seeing my friend at the weekend. We are doing the Race for Life together but we haven't seen each other in ages so it was nice to catch up. We even went out for a jog together and got leered at by a group of men outside a pub. Lovely!

2) Fluff. Damn I wish I had never tried it. I officially heart it!

3) Having a holiday countdown. Not only is it great having a sunny trip to look forward to but it's also a great little diet/work-out goal too!


4) Cool retro blogs like The Crafty Currant. I'm obsessed with all things vintage, retro and craft-y and her blog fits that description nicely! I have been making my way through all of her old posts and getting green with envy over all of her cool belongings.

5) Tea! Milky with no sugar, iced tea, camomile tea, green tea, fruity tea. You name it, I'm there with bells on!

The things that make me run..

6.6.10

I am in no way, shape or form qualified to give advice on jogging but I thought it might be useful to share my tips for putting down the Hob Nobs and going out for some exercise. In the past couple of months I've gone from doing very little to exercising almost every day, and even though some days it's hard to drag myself outside I still do it because I know it will make me feel better.

I have been a member of a gym before and groaned every month when the £50 left my bank account and I had only been about 3 times in that month. I own numerous workout DVDs (the best without a doubt being the 30 Day Shred which I do before work on a morning, but the others collect dust on the bookshelf). And now I've started jogging in preperation for taking part in the Race for Life, which by the way is in 2 weeks time. Yikes!!!

So, what makes me want to get up off my big ol' bum? Here are a few things that help to inspire me and get me moving.

This post from Laura at Lollipop Loves. Click here for the full post. This really inspires me and makes me want to be as enthusiastic as Laura is. Number 7 is so true! Those little treats in moderation really aren't so bad when you've been out exercising.
 

The hilariously funny and amazing SkinnyRunner. Her blog is very inspiring and really makes me want to get outside and run. Plus her figure is amazing - her hard work really shows! She is refreshingly honest and down to earth which makes her blog an easy read. Plus she is a fellow Smart Car driver so I instantly like her!


The Skinny Website. Packed full of pictures of celebs with amazing figures. I look at the workout snaps for inspiration. My favourite celebs on there are Kate Beckinsale, Kim Kardashian and Katy Perry - they manage to look amazing whilst working out. (Jealous).


Being in the right frame of mind. If I go out jogging when I don't want to I get fed up and I don't put the effort in that I should. If I'm prepared and feeling positive then I do so much better.

Eating well. If I eat sensible, balanced meals not only do I feel better inside but it makes me want to exercise. Filling up on carbs makes me want to go to bed!


My boyfriend. He jogs with me, times me, and really pushes me to work harder and encourages me not to stop. When I go alone I never ever do as well. (Must work on that!)

Looking the part. Once I had invested in some proper running gear and a brand spanking new pair of trainers I felt more confident instantly. Hopefully I can fool some passers-by that I'm a pro! :)

Signing up for the Race for Life. Having a goal has helped me SO much! Knowing that I've raised £250 and I have to jog with so many other people has really pushed me to try harder. If you want to get fit, get involved with a really great cause, and do something fun with your friends then I recommend you sign up. I'm hoping next year I'll be able to do a 10k! Let's see how I get on with the 5k first ay :)

Miscellaneous photos from www.weheartit.com