RECENTLY

posted in: BEAUTY, LIFE, TRAVEL | 4

IMG_0053Man! This week has really felt like the longest week of the longest month of the longest year. I think the Christmas move and subsequent scramble to keep my head above water has finally caught up with me and I got next to NOTHING done. It wasn’t particularly relaxing but definitely unproductive enough to give me a kick up the arse for the week ahead!

I thought I would do a little catch up today and fill you in on all the bits and pieces that might have made it in to a video or post but didn’t..

WATCHING

I saw La La Land on Wednesday night with Lee and went back on Friday with the kids. Obsessed. It was a bit late for Milo so the little guy slept through most of it but he was toe tapping away before he succumbed. The reason I took him at all was because that morning I was listening to the soundtrack on the way to school and he instructed me not to listen to any more without him because he ‘loved it so much’ – how could I not take him? It’s completely indescribable and I know it won’t be for everyone but my husband is not a musical guy at all and even he enjoyed it.. I would just say if you think you might want to see it it’s definitely a film that was made for the big screen. On the small screen this week was Delicious, the mini series with Emilia Fox & Dawn French. I’ve been taping since after Christmas and finally binged all 4 episodes last night, if it’s still available as a box set on Sky (and you have Sky) I would recommend it. I love Dawn French of course but the story wasn’t quite as predictable as I’d expected from the promos.. a welcome January pick me up since everything else I watch isn’t back till Feb! (Scandal and Suits are coming soon!!!!)

TRAVEL

We finally booked a hotel for our Anniversary weekend coming up. We were deliberating over where we wanted to go for the longest time and settled on Rudding Park Hotel in Harrogate which we found on Secret Escapes. I’ve never used the site before but we were spoiled for choice since we weren’t married to a certain area..I’ll let you know how it goes but so far I’d recommend the site for cheap deals. We also booked our Easter return to Las Vegas which is obviously the most exciting.. let the holiday shopping and attempts at diet and exercise commence. We’re going back to The Vdara which we absolutely loved last time and we always book through Expedia (people tend to ask) as we have never found a cheaper price for a holiday elsewhere.

BEAUTY

I have barely worn makeup this week because of a disastrous beauty fail on Wednesday. I thought it was a GREAT idea to have my entire face threaded (HORRIFYING – DO NOT DO THIS UNLESS YOU REALLY FEEL LIKE YOU NEED TO) and follow up with a brow tint and facial.. NOT a great idea. I’d like to think the salon would know if it wasn’t smart and that perhaps it was just me but I currently look like I’m suffering severe adult acne and am living in masks (skincare, not costumes) and salicylic acids. I will share some pictures with you along with some of the most effective treatments I’ve discovered along the way once I’ve cleared up my skin. It’s been a bit of a blessing as I’m currently testing a new skincare range aimed at blemish prone skin and 1 or all of the products do seem to be making a difference.. watch this space.

SHOPPING

The replacement for the camera I lost in the move finally arrived this week so that was my shopping budget for the month (and some) but my birthday is coming up and I have a little Wishlist populating in my mind. I actually sold a couple of bags on eBay this week that I wasn’t 100% in love with to fund some other things I absolutely DO love so I may share that list with you later in the week so you can weigh in. I’m also off to the shops tomorrow to check out the new season stuff.. BUT I have a bag full of ill advised sale purchases from Hollister to return SO it’s kind of like shopping for free, right? Swap Shop? I’m hearing good things about M&S knitwear right now and that’s a shop I literally never even walk through ordinarily so I will make a special trip tomorrow to see what all the fuss is about.

And that’s it (I’m sure I’m missing major details) ..I am going to be up and at ’em first thing tomorrow to get my shit together and post more this week but I’m not filming till Monday so any video requests would be EXCELLENT 😉

It’s Ok To Be Selfish

posted in: LIFE | 4

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I’m selfish by nature. I like things the way I like them and have to fight the urge to put my own wants at the front of the queue on a daily basis. That sounds terrible, I realise but I like to think that because I’m aware of it I have a pretty good handle on keeping my shit together and not being a complete arsehole 90% of the time.. but that other 10..

Although the word selfish carries negative connotations I am coming to realise with age that there is a time and a place when it’s actually perfectly acceptable, possibly even necessary to think of yourself first. Self care is so important and if you’re constantly busy with work and family commitments with zero time to dedicate to yourself you’re eventually going to burn out and be no use to anyone.. not to mention hugely resentful that you ran yourself down worrying about everyone else problems rather than your own.

I am the worst for not taking time to relax, I feel uneasy when I’m not doing at least a little bit of something and can’t remember the last time I actually WATCHED TV without another screen in front of it. Having only just moved house my constant need to be busy is in hyperdrive, with a seemingly never ending household To-Do list adding to my regular work lists I feel like I’ll never be well rested again. When I do finally take a minute to sit down and decompress I feel guilty knowing there are still so many things to be done and so it’s impossible to really ever unwind.

I mentioned in a recent post and last weeks video that I’ve been enjoying the new Sarah Knight book ‘Get Your Shit Together’ and in it she makes a very good case for prioritising your daily tasks so as not to overtake yourself and make sure that at the end of the day the really important stuff actually gets ticked off the list. That’s such a basic reminder but something that I’m trying to implement every single day at the moment and sometimes a selfish item is added to that list just to keep me sane. Painting my nails for example isn’t a ‘must do’ but while I’m doing it I couldn’t work if I wanted to so for me it’s a great way to enforce down time while doing something nice for myself that could also be classed as ‘necessary’ grooming.

As a mother, especially you’re expected to never think of yourself, when I’ve taken holidays sans kids or bought something expensive or frivolous I’ve come to anticipate a certain reaction from a particular set but if it’s something that you can do for yourself to remind you that you were a fully formed person before you grew these other full formed people and it’s not harming anyone else, why not do it?

As I write this I’m on an early train in to London for a meeting (I’ve always hated when bloggers refer to meetings like they’re hot shots with secret projects and here I am.. Meeting Wanker) which is technically work but when you’re self employed (which bloggers are) every meeting/trip outside your own home is a choice. This past year I’ve really struggled with guilt when it comes to leaving my husband with the kids or the kids with their childminder to pursue opportunities to the point of not taking them but if this was my ‘real job’ would I feel that way? Would my husband feel guilty if he had to take a business trip? Probably not.

If the important stuff on your wider to do list has been accomplished or you’ve delegated it elsewhere there should really be no problem in putting your personal needs or goals first occasionally.. and prior to todays very last minute arrangements I’d actually booked myself in for a facial tomorrow morning so it would seem I’m starting as I mean to go on..

NEW HOUSE / Open Plan Kitchen

posted in: HOME | 2

OPEN PLAN KITCHEN DINER SNUG STRATA

I’ve been meaning to get the first of these posts up since we moved in but I wanted to get settled enough for the rooms to look at least semi-finished before hand. Today I spent the entire day (literally 6-7 hours) organising cupboards, unpacking still packed boxes and cleaning the kitchen so it seemed like the logical place to start. We’re living with some furniture that doesn’t ‘go’ for right now while we find/save for replacements but we all love a good before/after, don’t we so consider this our ‘before’

OPEN PLAN KITCHEN DINER SNUG STRATA OPEN PLAN KITCHEN DINER SNUG STRATA OPEN PLAN KITCHEN DINER SNUG STRATA OPEN PLAN KITCHEN DINER SNUG STRATA OPEN PLAN KITCHEN DINER SNUG STRATA OPEN PLAN KITCHEN DINER SNUG STRATA OPEN PLAN KITCHEN DINER SNUG STRATAFor those of you just joining us we bought a new build with my parents 3weeks ago. The snug area off the kitchen/diner is their ‘living room’ for now but we’re hoping a conservatory will replace that in the not too distant future. In the meantime my Dad is building an outdoor mancave which I’ll also be sharing progress on in the next week or two. So the bookcase and the TV area will stay as is for now but we’re switching out the table, chairs and the bar stools as soon as we can. Long term we’d like to change the worktop and add a fully tiled backsplash all the way around the kitchen units but that’s way down the line.

It’s so tempting to wait until everything is finished to share rooms in your home but 1. when is it really ever FINISHED and 2. I love seeing the transformation steps in other people’s rooms so here we are.. next stop, living room!

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