Thursday, 22 January 2015

Nails of the Week and Some Words of Wisdom

So I've been having a bit of bloggers block lately. I had a pretty hectic time in December ( along with every other mama in the country I'm sure) but I ended up getting pretty stressed out. Along side work, blogging and being a mama, I was working on another venture, which incidentally didn't work out and was a total waste of time. I constantly felt stressed and tearful, my hair started falling out again and I found myself losing my temper with my little ones...... something had to change!

I decided to take a step back from social media to focus on enjoying Christmas and my family and you know what, it was so worth it! It made me realise what a time hoover things like Instagram and Twitter are and how precious my time is with my children, it felt as though there were more hours in the day!

 So after my little break I'm slowly slowly dipping my feet back in to the world of social media and blogging and as I am totally lacking in inspiration I would play it safe with a Nails of the Week post. Here goes......

This week I am obsessed with this glittery polish from the OPI Gwen Stefani Christmas 2014 range, it's called Snowglobe trotter and it's full of gorgeous holographic and white glitters. I confess, I actually bought this for my 3 year old! I thought we could use it for a Disney Frozen inspired mani for her but I have sneakily ended up using it on my self, hee hee.

I have layered it on top of Essie's St Lucia Lilac which is a classic and one of my favourites. I'm not sure if I have ever posted it on here before but St Lucia Lilac is a really wearable greyish lilac shade which works well all year round.

I noticed the Shellac Hack on pinterest recently and I thought I would give it a go, it's basically a cheeky way of getting your regular mani to last longer by layering a topcoat called Gelous. The best part is of course that you can use your old nail polishes rather than gels and no UV lamp needed. I will let you know how I get on with it!

Hope everyone is having a great week!!


Sunday, 4 January 2015

This Mama Loves: Faith in Nature Shampoo & Conditioner

As soon as my Faith in Nature products landed on the doorstep, I was impressed with what I saw. There was a note on the delivery label stating 'Responsible delivery- C02 Neutral' and when I opened up the package, the products were safely wrapped in biodegradable packaging. 
Faith in Nature haircare products tick all the boxes for what you would look expect in natural products, free from parabens and SLS, no synthetic colouring or fragrance, vegan, cruelty free and also the bottles are made from BPA free plastic and made from recycled materials where possible. 

The Haircare range has a great selection, I was intrigued by the Chocolate Shampoo & Conditioner but finally settled for the Lavender & Geranium range which their website describes as 'bringing calm to every day life' and I could definitely do with a dose of calm!

On to the actual results and the shampoo: I usually find natural shampoos difficult to lather due to the lack of detergents but this one is surprisingly effective and smells wonderful. 
The conditioner is very light, I usually like thick gloopy conditioners because my hair is so dry at the ends. The first time I used this conditioner, I really piled it on on but actually I needed far less than I thought. Ok, so it isn't my usually heavy duty product but it conditioned my hair beautifully. 
After blowdrying my hair felt lovely and soft, quite voluminous ( probably because it wasn't weighed down with gunky conditioners) and had a very subtly fresh lavender scent. 

I have long been on advocate of more natural products that cut out the chemical nasties, but despite my good intentions, I often find myself rushing in to Boots and picking up the first thing I come across. I so wish that brilliant products such as these were more readily available on the high street. That said, I will definitely be ordering these again in future they have some great products on their website, including a range for kids which would be great for my two and there is even a range for pets!!

*PR Sample 

Monday, 22 December 2014

This year's Photo Christmas Cards from Minted

I'm so excited to show you this year's Christmas cards, I am absolutely thrilled with them. The actual photo shoot itself was a bit of a nightmare, so I was a little bit concerned as to how the photos would turn out. I discovered that Rufio was petrified of the tinsel, which I had bought for the children to play with whilst I snapped away! It's quite funny now that I think about it, but at the time it resulted in something of a meltdown and I ended up with very few photos to choose from. That said, I am more than happy with the outcome and we have had so many lovely comments from our friends and family who received our Christmas cards.   

My inspiration for the twinkly bokeh background came from many hours of research on Pinterest. Once I set the lights up, I realised that I could probably have done with a few more, so I placed an Aden & Anais star muslin in the background to make the scene a little more christmassy- those muslins really do come in handy!! 
E's star T-shirt and tutu is from Mango Kids and Rufio's Gingerbreadman Christmas Jumper and Jeans are from M&S. I am always banging on about how hard it is to find nice, non garish clothes for boys and I have been finding loads of gorgeous outfits for Rufio there lately.

The cards themselves came from a brilliant online print company called Minted. I had asked a few friends for recommendations for photo cards beforehand and quite a few people raved about Minted so I was quite excited to do this review. I can happily say that there praise was well and truly justified, the service was fantastic.
Minted's website is really easy to use, you upload your chosen photos and immediately your image appears on all the designs in the category you have chosen. This makes it heaps easier to decide from the multitude of designs because you can actually envisage how your card is going to look.
Even though I used the standard delivery option, my cards still arrived from the US in three days!! My sister used the express option and hers arrived even quicker. The cards arrived safely packaged in bubblewrap and I was amazed with the results, the print quality of the cards themselves is excellent.
I have used a number of different companies for photo cards over the past few years for save the date cards, thank you cards, birth announcements and Christmas Cards and Minted is the best company I have used by a mile, I will certainly use them again in future.

Some of my favourite images from our Christmas Photo shoot:

More and more of my friends are sending photo cards lately and I absolutely love it! Did you send photo cards this year?
I'm not sure if I'll have a chance to blog between now and Christmas so I'm going to wish everyone a wonderful Christmas now xx


Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Dance in to the Holiday Season with L'Occitane

My fondness for L'Occitane began years and years ago as a student in Paris, studying at the Sorbonne. At that point I don't think that L'Occitane was even sold in the UK, it was THAT long ago! Back then, on my meagre student budget, it was a huge indulgence to buy myself treats from L'Occitane. I would purchase their home fragrances in an attempt to freshen up my room within gothic halls of residence, infused with the deep aroma of the millions of Gauloises consumed within those walls over the years. I can even remember bringing back a tube of the cult favourite Shea butter hand cream as a Christmas gift for my mother.

L'Occitane have released this beautifully made video which inspires you to dance in to the holiday season this year with their beautiful range of Christmas gift ideas. The clip evokes the fresh rustic charm of Provence, with subtle suggestions for exquisite gifts to delight everyone.

If like me, you are pushed for time when it comes to Christmas shopping, then I strongly recommend that you waltz on over to L'Occitane to take a look at their Christmas gift collection. Here you will find festive limited editions, rich in colour and bursting with scents from mother nature. I find male relatives notoriously difficult to buy for at this time of year and L'Occitane's Perfect Shave set would make the ultimate gift. For my darling mother there are Shea Butter gift sets a plenty, with many of them on offer too! Of course being the beauty product junkie that I am, there are quite a few things that I have my eye on, with the Relaxing Lavender Collection at the top of my list.

*pr collaboration 


Monday, 17 November 2014

Izabela Peters Children's Apron Review

Everyone says that E is a carbon copy of me when I was little both in appearance and in her manner. Even I sometimes do a double take at photos of us both and I do have a giggle at some of the things she does, I know where she's coming from. Of course, she is her very much her own person too and one of the things that she DEFINITELY hasn't inherited from me is her love of cooking! She will sit there for hours watching Daddy in the kitchen and begs me to bake cupcakes with her at the weekend ( The Peppa pig just add water ones are about my level)

I was asked by Izabela Peters to review their products, they design some beautiful items for children, for the house and for Christmas and I chose this gorgeous apron for E. I loved the vintage rose design, inspired by 1950's glamour. It is made from 100% cotton which is thankfully machine washable. I ordered this in age 2-5, E is three and quite tall for her age and this fits perfectly. It has an adjustable neck tie which means that the apron can be lengthened as she grows and another tie at the waist. There is also a little pocket at the front which E uses to store her kitchen utensils when she's wearing the apron to play in her toy kitchen.

This apron is from the Vintage Rose collection, it comes in four different colours and I chose taupe and I'm even contemplating getting the adult version for myself, it's about time I learned to cook! This apron would make a fantastic Christmas gift for any little girl and there are tons more gift ideas for the whole family on the Izabela Peters website.
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