30 November 2011

Things that make you go Oooooo (November 2011)

by hakanphotography
I can't believe that another year is almost over, I feel like I've done so much this year yet so little and I still haven't made any solid goals for 2012 despite it edging ever closer. Winter is here, I can't wait for the snow to arrive and I'm feeling rather festive which is probably the effect of my Starbucks eggnog latte addiction, so grab yourself a hot drink and enjoy this months Things that make you go Oooooo...

Vintage Egg Tutorial - Aren't these the cutest? The perfect way to decorate your Christmas tree.

21 Small Habits That Will Help You to Live a Simpler Live

5 Tips for Better Self Portraits - I've been think of maybe taking up the 365 challenge next year so these simple but great tips will come in useful.

by Moonywolf
How To Get Calm in a World Full of Crazy - I don't know if it's the effect of the Christmas season but I'm finding myself getting extra stressy so here are some great tips from Gala for finding your calm.

My Childhood Icon: Sailor Moon

10 Real-Talk Blog Tips - A few of you have asked me about blogging tips recently so here are some great tips from Joy which I 100% follow and agree with!

by sssseahorse
Let's Make & Receive Surprise Balls - These are such a great idea, especially for Christmas it be great to make a few to hang on your Christmas tree so not only is it an adorable decoration but a fun gift to.

Hair How-To

D.I.Y. Faux Fur Stole - The perfect winter accessory and definitely on my winter crafting list, they would also make a great gift for Christmas!

by Jyoujo
Tokyo Rising - This is a great mini series about Tokyo's youth and creative culture, so inspirational!

Save That Money

Mila Kunis - Great interview, not only is she absolutely gorgeous but a very inspirational and intelligent role model.

by Misses Magoo

Young Me Now - Recreating your childhood photos is such a great idea I'm so inspired to join in on this project.

All "Restriction" is Not Created Equal

The Muppets in Fairytales - I love the Muppets and I'm so happy there's a new movie coming out soon also here's some more Muppet love for my fellow Game of Thrones fans

by Candace Lesage Austen
What Carrie Bradshaw Can Teach You About Blogging - I always kinda think of Carrie as the original blogger even though technically she wasn't but we can still learn some great lessons from her to help our own blogs.

"We are all bad feminists, really"

5 Feminist Conversations I'm Over - THIS so much, such a funny but great read!

by marymarycherry
The Thing About Posing - My gorgeous friend YumeNinja shares some of her great tips on posing and looking your best in photos, definitely something I'm taking notes on!

Wanna Be My Friend?

Good People - This is such a heart warming read from Gala and definitely something I can relate to.

Love & Sparkly Hugs

28 November 2011

Beauty Blitz: The Shopping BAN!

Whilst doing my monthly purge of items I don't wear or never use I noticed that I have an excess of beauty products. Over the past few years I've been more conscious of my spending and trying only to spend money on items that I will use, beauty products coming under that category, however it would seem that even when it comes to those items I am still consuming too much. The final straw came when my the drawer I keep all these products in broke and well you know you have too many lotions and potions when your drawers collapse under the sheer weight of them!
I will openly admit I don't have the best skin, I suffer from eczema, I break out, I have blackheads and yes I do use a bit of photoshop to cover up certain blemishes so I'm constantly on the look out for products that will soothe and better my skin (espcially during winter!) but my problem is is that I tend to hoard products, I'll save them for certain occasions which never seem to come instead of just using them and making the most of them before their shelf life expires.

Maybe you guys have heard of the 10 pan challenge but basically it's where you put yourself on a shopping ban for beauty products and make-up until you've used 10 items up, this video explains the basics of it...

I think this is something I definitely have to do if not for myself but for the sake of my poor drawers who can no longer handle the sheer weight of my addiction!

Christmas is around the corner and I am expecting a few beauty related gifts (don't worry gifts are allowed!) so I feel this is the perfect time for me to clear out my drawers, use up some forgotten items and see what products work best for me.

This is my pile of beauty products that I want to use up which is admittedly A LOT more than 10 but as a lot have already been used or are sample sized I figure it wouldn't be much of a challenge. I won't go through each individual product but if I find a good one I'll be sure to share, in fact most of what I want to use up is lipgloss which considering how dry my lips get in the winter shouldn't be too much of a problem.

After all these are used up I think I'm going to take a lot more time and consideration into which products I'm going to buy, maybe spending that little bit extra on them if they do a good job of making my skin look good and maybe booking myself an appointment with a dermatologist to see what treatments they can recommend for me.

With that in mind do any of you have any must have products that you just couldn't live without or are you like me a hoarder of beauty products and in dire need of a purge?

Love & Sparkly Hugs

26 November 2011

Recipes For a Cold Winter's Day

The holidays are on their way and with it a plethora of delicious food, I'm a firm believer that anyone can cook and even if your meals don't turn out as pretty as they do in the recipes there's no better gift than a home cooked meal and that to me is what the holidays are all about so I thought I would share a few of my favourite winter recipes from fellow bloggers for you guys to try out.

Quinoa Stuffed Squash - The perfect seasonal recipe, healthy, delicious and really easy to make.

Curried Vegetable Stew with Pearl Barley & Almonds -Stew is the best cure for a cold winters day and I love this different take on a traditional recipe.

Beef Stew - A simple but delicious recipe sure to warm your belly!

Lentil and Root Vegetable Soup -  One of the best soups I've tasted and makes great use of those seasonal vegetables.

Butternut Squash Soup - I love the use of pears and cheese in this, it gives the soup a great depth of flavour
Super Moist Pumpkin Bread - Although the recipe says bread there's none of that kneading and rising involved (thankfully!) this tastes great with a hearty warm soup.

Chocolate Crinkle Cookies - So light and delicious perfect with a mug of hot chocolate.

Old Fashioned Donuts with Chocolate Glaze - Hot fresh donuts are the yummiest thing ever, the perfect comfort food!

Blueberry Peach Pie - I love me some pie and blueberry and peach work so deliciously together.

Fifteens - These are such an easy and great treat to make whatever your kitchen skills, try them  and you'll be hooked!

Indulge & Enjoy!

20 November 2011

Set Your Music On Fire

by ice-cold photography
Metaphorical or not we all need a bit of heat and fire in our lives whether it be to keep us warm or to give us courage. Music is a wonderful motivator and something I've been relying on a lot recently to perk me up so here are a few of my favourite fiery tunes sure to inspire and keep the fire going through these long cold winter months.

Set Fire to the Rain - Adele
Fire of Unknown Origin - Blue Oyster Cult
There is a Light That Never Goes Out - The Smiths
Sparks - Coldplay
Volcano - Damien Rice
Golden - Late Night Alumni
Crash and Burn Girl - Robyn
Canned Heat - Jamiroquai
Fever - Lady Gaga
This Fire - Franz Ferdinand

Love & Flames

16 November 2011

Inspirational Quotes #20

Style is primarily a matter of instinct. - Bill Blass

05 November 2011

Beauty Blitz: Hydrate & Moisturise!

by thenakedsnail

The days are colder and with all the extra layers you're wearing it's more important than ever to keep yourself moisturised and hydrated. If you're anything like me you'll find that your skin tends to dry up more in the winter and that it can be quite painful so here are a few of the products I've tried out recently which have been doing a great job of keeping my skin fresh.

Giovanni Nutrafix Hair Reconstructor

I've been attempting to get my hair back into a strong healthy state after bleaching it so much the past year, I'm back to my natural colour, banned my hair dryer and straighteners, and also using this deep conditioner a couple times a week and it has worked wonders my hair is so silky smooth and full again I love it. I definitely recommend Giovanni products they're organic, cruelty free, and leave your hair looking its absolute best!

 First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream

This stuff is A.M.A.Z.I.N.G. I bought it from Sephora after I got a bit sunburnt in L.A. and it totally worked wonders. As it's unlikely I'll be getting sunburnt in the U.K. I recently started to use what was left of it on my eczema patches and within a few days they were gone! This is my new miracle cream and I suggest you all go out and buy yourself a tube now.

Oilatum Natural Repair Face Cream

Sometimes I get little dry skin on my face and most moisturisers I use tend to be too greasy but this cream is really gentle and sensitive but moisturising enough to soothe the dry patches of my skin, you can also use it on other areas of your body and it's also great for soothing eczema to.
The Body Shop Vitamin E Body Butter

Body Butters my favourite products from The Body Shop they're super moisturising and they smell amazing. I recently bought this Vitamin E cream to try out and I love it, it's really hydrating, great for your skin, and I actually have shiny model-esque legs now which is first!

Vita Coco Coconut Water

Coconut juice has always been one of my favourites I pretty much live on fresh coconut juice in Thailand (we used to have a coconut tree in our house) and whilst I was in L.A. I got hooked on Vita Coco and to my delight they're actually selling it in the U.K. now so I can get my coconut fix all year round YEY! Coconut juice is more hydrating than water and full of vitamin goodness and there's no added sugar which means it's 100% healthy and delicious, served it in an ice cold glass with a little umbrella it's the perfect tropical pick me up!

Love & Warm Cuddles

03 November 2011

Random Acts of Kindness: Operation Christmas Child

I was lucky to have been brought up in a household where I pretty much got everything I wanted for Christmas (although I'm still waiting on that Dinosaur) but I know there are lots of children in this world who aren't as lucky as I was and every Christmas I always try to give back some of that joy I experience to someone who may not be as lucky this Christmas..

Operation Christmas Child is something I've been involved in since my school days when it first started 20 something years ago and even though my school days are long since gone I've continued the tradition and every year made an effort to donate at least one shoebox to the appeal.

It's shoebox donation time again and from the 1st to the 18th of November Operation Christmas Child will be taking in shoeboxes filled with gifts and goodies to send to disadvantaged children all around the world and I totally encourage all of you to get involved as it's such a fun project to be involved in and it brings a lot of hapiness to so many children.

There's two ways you can make up a shoebox the traditional way like I did, by following these guidelines and dropping it off at your local Drop Off Point or you can do it virtually by visiting Shoebox World and selecting the gifts you want to include in your box and make your donation that way. So what are you waiting for spread the joy of the holidays, grab a shoebox and fill it with love

Love & Sparkly Hugs