Saturday, 25 October 2014

I'm still here...

So slight hiccup on the technology front, my laptop wouldn't switch on for AGES but miraculously hubby managed to fix it today so this evening deserved a quick catchup post.

I have been SO extremely busy, I now have a 3 year old, can u believe Esra is 3?! It only seems like yesterday I was posting pregnancy pictures. Also to top it off, she started nursery a few days after her birthday so I have been all over the place. It's taken a while for her to settle in as she's quite shy but she now happily waves goodbye knowing that I will come back for her. Also as a side note I am not prepared to answer any nursery/pre school related questions for privacy reasons so please don't ask.

What else? I chopped off all of my hair, if you follow me on Instagram you will already know this but I just wanted a refreshing change, it's something I have wanted to do for a couple of years now and I'm so glad I took the plunge as it's been 3 weeks and I still LOVE it.

How's the new place coming along I hear you ask.... Well it's been crazy, we obviously still haven't finished but things are a lot more settled and everything has a place. I have been on an organising decluttering mission and have donated so much stuff it's unbelievable. But, it's all positive and a clear tidy home means a clear tidy mind. I am loving the minimalist style at the moment and am minimising anything and everything I can.

For my dressing table in the bedroom I went for the Ikea 'Malm' table and 'Alex' drawer unit. I don't have all of the accessories and styling pieces I want so it's bare at the moment and I'm a bit stuck.


I have also decided to use it as my blogging spot and the only way I can get wifi in our bedroom is if I strategically place the laptop on an angle on the edge. I clearly need a wifi booster in my life. I have happily been browsing pinterest whilst I have my tea seeking inspiration for my makeup/blogging table. I am also thinking to remove the glass top from the table as I just don't like the shine it gives, bad idea or not?


I got the 'Kolja' mirror and the light bulb strips to go on either side, but I'm not so sure if I want it like that now. Luckily we haven't had a chance to hang anything up so I'm taking it as a sign that maybe I am destined for a different mirror. This idea is all because we got new grey bedding and I have visions of a rose gold antique but modern mirror hanging. Grey, Rose gold and white and maybe a few hints of peach sounds lovely, what do you think? Shall I use this boring square mirror or get something different?

My makeup is all stored in the drawer, and it's working out nicely. In the tall 'Alex' unit I keep skincare, nail care, body care, jewellery, magazines, travel bags, electricals, hair care and hair tools in that same order top to bottom. It's been a real lifesaver and I would own a few more if I could.



I still need a dressing table chair, I stole one of the dining room chairs for now but I need something nice, not the boring ones from ikea. I would also quite like to hang some shelves so I can place some photos and books. I also need a vase and some splashes of colour!!!

Need, need, need. Want, want, want..... It's never ending. 

What would you do with a space like this?

Monday, 22 September 2014

Block Heel Boots!

I am obsessed with my new peeptoe cutout block heel boots!



The block heel is so amazing, I have worn them out all night and they are incredibly comfortable which is definitely a must have for me, there's no way I can wear long thin heels and walk normally anymore.



These shoes are a steal at £49.99 from New Look Premium range and real leather! Grab these for cool Autumn nights to pair with skinny jeans, skater skirts, pencil skirts and dresses. I wore these on Saturday night with a black faux leather pencil skirt from River Island (see here) and a simple white vest and these shoes were on point! they look more expensive than they really are and will be a new staple in my wardrobe.

What type of heels are you loving lately?

Wednesday, 17 September 2014

KIKO...

There was something that was missing in my life and that was a golden illuminator for my freshly tanned skin. Now that my skin is darker my existing highlighters just aren't cutting it. (What a great excuse for new makeup!)

Whilst shopping in Westfield last night I decided to pop into KIKO, the Italian brand of makeup that I had never tried. I like to play it quite safe and stick to my usual brands but the store was calling me. The price of the items shocked me a little, I thought it would have been more expensive which was a pleasant surprise. I got two eyeshadows (one which can be used as an illuminator/highlighter) and a fixing spray. The eyeshadows were £5.90 each and the spray was £7.90.


The pink toned one is a sparkle eyeshadow (Shade 403) which has a subtle rose gold sheen with glitter, the glitter is slightly chunky but still smooth, I wanted this for the centre of my lids to layer on top of different eyesahdows, the SA told me that it was more like a topcoat which I immediately agreed on.

The gold (shade 208) is a wet eyeshadow, apparently it's one of their best sellers particularly for darker skin tones as it can be used a highlighter. I have read on many blogs that it's a very close dupe for Mac's coveted 'Whisper of gilt' extra dimension skin finish so I had to have it.


Both shades are beautiful and I can't wait to wear them!


I asked the SA what other bestsellers they had and she said that the fixing spray did really well which was consequently exactly what I needed. I'm going out this Saturday night so it will be exciting to see if it lives up to the claims. I tried it instore and it was a little like spraying hair spray on your face which was a bit weird, but we shall see!

I definitely would like to try more from the brand, do you have any favourites?

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Zhuzch! The Tan Accelerator...

Ok, so I'm going to keep this short and sweet. This is a MUST have for busy sunbathers! It's the perfect product for when you want the quickest deepest tan in the shortest time possible. It's perfect for toddler mums who don't get to sunbathe for as long as they would like or if you are going on a short trip but want to accelerate your tan.


So the first thing I checked with this is if it contains self tan, and no it doesn't.

It comes in a spray bottle and the way to use it is to layer it over your desired SPF. Throughout the 2 weeks I started off with SPF30 over my body and 50 on my shoulders, then dropped to 15 and lower the last couple of days. I used SPF50 around my eyes constantly and used SPF30 & 15 on my face. 

I'm not going to rant about sun damage but hey the body needs vitamin D too, but in moderation obviously.

I used the Zhuzh tan accelerator throughout the day spraying it over my SPF. It smells incredibly fresh and slightly floral with a cooling effect.



I didn't do as much sunbathing as I hoped for as it was so hot we only did the mornings, and rarely the afternoons but I still managed to get a deep tan thanks to the tan accelerator. There is no way i would have been this dark if I hadn't of used it. I also did not peel at all and my colour is even all over. *happy Carlton dance*


This product definitely gets a big thumbs up from me and it will be in my beach bag for all forthcoming holidays!! The bottle lasted me for 2 weeks and my husband even used some too after he saw that I was getting darker than him! :)

Price £19.99
For more info click HERE

Have you tried a tan accelerator before?

Disclaimer: This product was sent for consideration for review, I was not paid for this post and this is an honest opinion as always and this post contains no affiliated links.

Sunday, 14 September 2014

Egypt, Hurghada....

We are back!! 2 weeks with the sun, sea and sand have been amazing!!


We stayed at 'Sunrise Royal Makadi Bay' resort in Hurghada which was about a 6 hour flight from London, Gatwick. Esra was entertained throughout the flight thanks to my pre planning! It was a 5 star, all inclusive resort and about 30 minutes drive from Hurghada airport.

Egypt is beautiful but it's definitely a country you have to do your research on beforehand as we got ripped off with our visas literally as soon as we stepped foot onto Egyptian land. So take note people, if you go to Hurghada airport, be sure to get your visas from the bank and not the folk who will run up to you trying to seem helpful. The food at the hotel was lovely but not always up to standard, so we ended up going to the a la carte restaurants with the Italian and Mexican being our favourites. The animation team were amazing and the hotel had great customer service skills and is a resort that I would recommend and one that I would consider revisiting. I would also recommend getting 'red flags' for the beach as it means 'do not disturb' to stop sellers coming up to you whilst you are trying to relax. With all of the negative bits over, the positives definitely outweighed them. The red sea is so beautiful and clear, you can see fishes swimming right up to your feet and it feels incredibly relaxing to swim in the ocean and listen to the waves. The sea is extremely salty and it really helped clear up my skin which was an extra bonus. The heat was incredibly hot, almost 40 degrees yet the heat felt so dry and there is always some sort of breeze. My hair didn't do the 'Monica effect' and always seemed to cooperate which was an even bigger bonus! Esra had so much fun playing, dancing and eating way too much pink ice cream. I loved having shisha in the evenings and working on my tan! :)

The Egyptian sunrise when I went to the beach to reserve our seats. :)



We loaded up on SPF 50 for the first few days and then dropped to 30 and slightly lower the last few days. I also used a tan accelerator which enabled me to get a quick deep golden bronze tan which I will do a review on next. Esra napped on the beach twice and we ended up going to the room after lunch as the sun was so draining we all needed naps.


Vesilli, the camel was on the beach everyday carrying tourists up and down. Esra loved him and so did I. Camels are so incredibly charming and cute!



My little beach baby!


I loved wearing a bright lip for the evenings and I mostly wore Mac 'Ririwoo' and 'Lady Danger' which were perfect for a statement lip. I also did lots of golden smokey eyes with nude lips. 


LIPS: 'Lady Danger' with Mac 'Cherry' lipliner under it.
FACE: Maybelline FIT ME foundation mixed with moisturiser
CONCEALER: YSL Touche Eclat
CHEEKS: Sleek 'Medium' Contour Kit
EYES: Mac 'Coffee' eyeliner, 'Texture' e/s and Smashbox mascara.


We also had the best family photoshoot and here's a few shots!! 










Egypt thank you for being so amazing!!!
Have you been to Egypt? If so, what was your experience...

Thursday, 28 August 2014

Travelling with toddler...

Hello! *blows dust off the keyboard* I am here, I have been hibernating but today I decided to actually blog... *happy dance* I did one of these mummy travel posts last year so decided it was only fair if I did one this year too.

We are going on holiday to Egypt for 2 weeks and Esra will be 3 at the end of next month (seriously where did the time go?) and I have been in a bit of a panic trying to organise and get things prepared. Last year was a complete success, I had a happy toddler and she was entertained the whole time, but now that she is older it's a whole new ball game. Click HERE to see what I took with me for my almost 2 year old last year.

This year, I have broken it down to 3 categories: Beach, Flight & Evening ActivitiesHere is what I am taking....

This is everything!!




BEACH

Ok so, obviously the usual bucket, spade and shovels. I am also taking a "cooking" set that I picked up from the pound shop, I figured sand cooking would be entertaining! I am also taking silicone cupcake cases, candles and embellishments to make sand cupcakes which I know she will love as we always make them with play doh! Ice cream cones and scoop to make sand cones, extra bowl and cups for sandcastles, windmills for the sandcastles instead of flags. 'Melissa and Doug' butterfly binoculars, a toy camera which was a freebie from a magazine, a ball, water guns and a 'Pinypon' mermaid set.


I will not be giving all of these to her on the same day, I will try and spread them out and gift her the mermaids for good behaviour probably after a week. The 'Pinypon' set is adorable, the mermaids have interchangeable pieces and you can flip their heads the other way round and change their expression and store things in there head! Sounds crazy but cool for a toddler!! Also the idea for the beach was to keep it cheap and cheerful as stuff ALWAYS goes missing!
We are also taking an inflatable pool with a shade for the beach, a manta ray ride on, pool ring, arm bands, beach ball and a kite! Sounds like a lot of stuff but it's probably just right!



FLIGHT

The Trunki is coming with us once again as it's the best toddler luggage ever! It will be Esra's carry on flight activity bag and I think I have packed it strategically so this system should work well.


I have put another drawstring bag inside filled with activities so that I am not rummaging for things and I can just pull it out once we are in the air. The other side of the Trunki has a blanket, 2 changes of clothes, a couple of pull ups even though she is potty trained, iPad, iPad stand, headphones, her beloved teddy that she drags everywhere and a new toy.


The new toy is a mermaid 'Lalaoopsie' and I know she's going to love it, this will be handed to her once we get to the airport for good behaviour and to celebrate that we are going on holiday!


The 'Peppa pig' drawstring bag houses all of these lovely things that I have spent ages planning! Most of the things you see here are new so it will all be exciting for her. Here's whats inside;

  • Book - 1001 Things to spot in the sea
  • Book - The Singing Mermaid
  • Book - Maisy's Pool
  • Book - Goodnight Moon
  • Book - There's a Hippopotamus on the roof eating cake.
  • Book - Peppa Pig 'Let's Go'
  • Usbourne Holiday Sticker Book 
  • Peppa Pig Sticker books X2
  • Stickers - (Galt sticker book, Frozen stickers & Peppa Pig stickers)
  • Colouring pages, notebook & clickable colour changing pen
  • Melissa & Doug Princess crayon set
  • Lalaloopsy Gel stickers in tin
  • Peppa Pig puzzle
  • 'Mudpuppy' magnetic mermaid dress up 
  • Horse lacing card
  • Felt button lacing busy bag
  • Gel clings for window
  • Small toys


The toys are in this little mermaid zipper bag, they are all small and perfect for role play. All of the babies are new and she has never seen them so she will definitely be excited and enjoy them. The will be wrapped up and I will hand one over to her every so often. The babies are by 'Yogurtini' and they are also scented, I picked them up from Argos on sale for £3.99 from £9.99 for a pack of 3 and I got 3 sets so there is plenty to keep her busy. There are also a couple of her ponies, a table, a swing and a car for some good times on the plane!


EVENING ACTIVITIES

So the evenings are quite difficult and I will rely on the iPad as much as I can as it works, but for some unplugged play we need activities! I have kept them all as compact as can be. Everything apart from the activity books fits neatly inside this zipper bag. The small tin houses lego which will be perfect for late evening chilling, I found this idea on pinterest, and it's definitely a good one.


We have more sticker books, Peppa Pig colouring pages, painting with water, mermaid scene set, Egyptian colouring book & a couple of magazines with loads of freebies. I have also included 3 puzzles, finger puppets, more stickers, balloons, glow sticks, bubbles, gel clings, a caterpillar tin game and a few busy bags.



The glow sticks will be amazing in the evenings!



SNACKS

If you are wondering where the snacks be at.... the snacks are in this bag and daddy will be in charge of them. The bag is by 'dotcomgiftshop' but I got it from Sainsburys for £3.


I have been collecting snacks for a week now, I have a mix of healthy and non healthy because you gotta do what you gotta do! I have however split up gummy bears into small portions with grip seal bags so that at least I have some control. I managed to find some organic lollipops that are gelatine free and vegan by Biona, All the snacks pictured are halal and suitable for vegetarians,


Wow, that seems like a lot doesn't it?! Well, I would rather be the Mary Poppins mama constantly bringing "stuff" out of my bag than dealing with an unhappy toddler on an airplane. If there are other toddlers round us they will get stickers and lollipops too, happy toddler = happy mummy.

So do you think I will get a chance to read my book? :) 

What would you take on a 2 week beach holiday with a toddler? Anything I missed?