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Wednesday, 28 January 2015

Hair Envy

Confession! I haven't had my hair cut in a long time -we are talking years, possibly more than 5? I can't even quite remember it's been that long.

When I was very young, all through primary school I never wanted to dye my hair, I always told myself and anyone who asked that I would just never do it. I would have it trimmed and cut when needed but that was that. Then one high school, that changed! I had a few little bits of red put through it (my hair was and still is dark brown), done by a professional at a salon. I LOVED it and after that I was changing my hair all the time, every few weeks I would add a new colour in a different way and by this point I was doing it all by myself. I had purple streaks, I had dark brown hair with bright red roots (I liked that a lot!), I had black and pink -think Kelly Osbourne pink, I had blue, you name all different lengths and styles.

As I then got a little older and reached my 20's I stopped dying it, I started to let it grow and let it get back to a really healthy condition. I did always take special care of my hair when I was doing so much to it in an attempt to keep it as healthy as possible. Being honest though, you can only do so much and while it looked healthy and shiny and well looked after it was probably not it's best.

I've now been growing it out since last time I was anywhere near a salon and its reached quite a long length -which I wanted, but with it not being trimmed into any kind of style for years now, can look shapeless sometimes.

This has left me with serious hair envy of late, and led to many hours spend on Pinterest trying to find inspiration. I think it's really about time I went for a visit to the hair dressers but one thing I know for sure is that I would like to keep as much of the length as possible. Even if the temptation is there to chop a lot of it off...I know I would regret that!

What's your favourite style?

Sunday, 25 January 2015

Made Me Happy This Week

The saying "tidy house, tidy mind" has been true for us this weekend. Our extension has really been used as one large storage area for the last few months, meaning it's not been somewhere we have wanted to spend time. It became one of those room that you try not to think about until you have to go in for something. Well we spend Saturday clearing it out and putting things in their rightful places (now that some of them have places) and making it look like a room again. It now makes me smile when I go in and doesn't leave me trying to mentally block it out!

1. Nutella malt milkshakes, otherwise known as "the worlds best drink"! As you can see from the picture it was huge! I couldn't finish it all so had to take half home -I definitely wasn't leaving without it!

2. Lazy mornings in bed with lots of cuddles, the best way to start the weekend.

3. Starting to make plans for our house for this year. I always feel like such a grown up when we sit and discuss new windows or's a funny feeling. 

4. Buying new stationery -sometimes I wonder if you can have too many notebooks?!

5. Still using Lush Christmas bubble bars in January, the glitter and warm spicy scents make me so happy on cold rainy January nights.

6. Late night food shopping! It may not be everybody's cup of tea but I love it, I love making the lists of what we need and wondering around the supermarket. Especially when we have a little look in the home section :) Plus, when you go later it's so nice and quiet.

7. Roasted garlic mash -it's a wonderful thing! 


Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Puff Pastry Cinnamon Rolls

I'm going to be honest here...these tasty little bites came from that want for something sweet in the middle of the afternoon. With there being nothing in the house to fill that need -unusual in this house let me tell you, and after having a rummage through the cupboards and finding a roll of puff pasty in the fridge these seemed like the perfect choice! While they may not win any beauty pageants, they are very tasty and perfect with a cup of tea. 

They are very simple to make, so simple in fact you could whip them up for breakfast if you wanted to. Unlike cinnamon rolls made with dough these need no time to rise or any forward planning really...just a pre-heated oven.

You will need:
1 sheet of roll out puff pastry
2 1/2 tablespoons of butter -softened 
2 tablespoons of packed brown sugar 
2 1/2 tablespoons of cinnamon 

For the glaze:
2 tablespoons of icing sugar
1 tablespoon of milk
1 1/2 tablespoons of golden syrup
Small handful of pecan half -finely chopped (optional)

If I had thought about making these before hand I would have maybe made the glaze with maple syrup instead, but to be honest it worked out so well I think I prefer the golden syrup.

1. Preheat your oven to 220 degrees c.

2. In a bowl mix together your butter, cinnamon and brown sugar (-if using unsalted butter add a pinch of salt) to make your filling, keep mixing until you have a smooth paste.

3. Unroll or unfold your puff pastry sheet and lay it out flat, turn it so it is lengthwise or landscape to you. Then spread your filling all over the puff pastry sheet, making sure that it is as even as possible.

4. Now start rolling! Starting at one end, make a tiny fold and do this along the length of the sheet. Keep going back and forth until you have one long roll of pasty. When you reach around half way it rolls very easily.

5. To make your mini cinnamon rolls as even as possible cut your roll of pastry in half so you have two equal parts, then cut those in half again so you have 4. Now cut each of these smaller rolls into 3 even(ish) sized bits. 

6. Place them evenly spaced on a lined baking tray, swirls facing up, and pop them in the oven for between 15-20 minutes, I always find it depends on the oven but you want them to be golden brown.

While they are cooking away you can make you glaze...

1. In a bowl add your milk and icing sugar and mix until combined, then add your golden syrup and chopped pecan if you fancy them. 

I had mine hot straight from the oven with the glaze on top but you can let them cool first if you like. So there you go, super simple cinnamon rolls. -there's tongue twister for you! :)


Sunday, 18 January 2015

Made Me Happy This Week

{bright spring flowers against the frost}

This week has been full of not so happy or difficult moments but after each has come something lovely. For example...after a particularly stressful, anxious, really rather horrible Thursday morning, Paul made the afternoon utterly perfect to make sure I was fully cheered up (he is sweet like that). He had taken the day off work for me and we spent the afternoon cuddled up in bed watching a couple of films -with some cookies and cups of tea, then later he made us a very tasty dinner. Nothing fancy, the kind of un-photogenic comfort food that cheers you up. So all in all just a peaceful afternoon at home -exactly what was needed.

1. I have stolen Paul's pyjama bottoms! I seem to acquire more and more of his pyjamas as time goes on but he encourages it so it's not really my fault. I also love wearing them, there is something comforting about it.

2. The beautiful frost every morning. It has been bitterly cold recently, the kind of cold that leaves your fingers burning when you go back inside to get warm (does anyone else like that feeling?). I find snow and frost so very beautiful so it's been lovely waking up to it.

3. Orange and yellow roses. It may not be Spring quite yet but it makes me happy to have some bright colours around.

4. My new favourite nail polish combination -dark with a little bit of glitter.

5. Another Sunday of film watching, it seems to have become a habit but is there a better way to spend a frosty afternoon I ask you?

6. Pastel coloured sky's late in the afternoons, such beautiful colours I find myself watching slowly change.

7. Nutella! We have had it on nearly everything this week. Our excuse is that we are just trying to use up the jar -who are we kidding!

Tuesday, 13 January 2015

Goals for 2015...

I've mentioned before a few times that I'm not a huge fan of January -I mean, its not the best of months is it? But I think you can make it a positive time, for the month and for the rest of the year!

I have never really been someone who makes New Years resolutions, I'm pretty sure I've only done it once or twice -and they weren't kept for very long. I tried! I did, but sometimes life (and all it contains) just gets in your way and then you can be left feeling as if you have failed -and that's not good for anyone! This year...I am doing things a little differently! There is always such a hype around the beginning of January and everyone is making plans and setting goals for them self, instead I am taking this month to really think about what I want. Not just for the next 12 month but rather starting to think of permanent changes that I can begin working on. It would be unrealistic to think that complete self improvement could happen in a few months but it all about taking steps be they large or small.

I'm not going to write a list here because I haven't finished setting my goals and I'm not sure I want to share them all just yet. But what I do know for sure is that they will all be based on self improvement, personally and in other parts of my life. I will of course keep you up to date on these things and maybe share some tips or tricks I pick up.

Have you made any resolutions this year -or have you decided against the whole thing? I would love to hear what your plans are :)


Sunday, 11 January 2015

Made Me Happy This Week

I feel that this week I have very little to talk about, nothing much has happened -we haven't really done anything, and there have been no exciting plans made or enjoyed. I think this is why January is my least favourite month, it's not that quiet months are fact I think we need them. It's just that it unfortunately falls right after Christmas -and that's a hard act to follow!  We have been very couch-potato-like this week, we have spent our evenings watching all of the Harry Potter films, in order of course. It always makes me a little sad when the last one finishes and I remember all over again that the films are done and there will be no more. But that's what DVD's are for :)

1. The 100 started again on E4. I became just a little obsessed with the first series of this and I'm so glad it's back!

2. Roasted broccoli! We tried it for the first time this week and it's safe to say I'm hooked.

3. The Christmas chocolate has finally gone! This is a good thing, a very good thing.

4. I overcame a tiny part of a GIANT fear this week. I don't want to say what it is at the moment but even I have to admit it is just a tiny part. But however small it may be... a first step is better than no step.

5. Starting the planning for my nieces 5th birthday party. Every year her mum and I get so excited and can sometimes go a little mad -like last year here! This year it's Frozen themed...obviously! 

6. Spending a rainy Sunday watching 90's films (and eating jam sponge pudding with custard). Also remembering how good the music was in those films.

7. Crumpets with tea and butter -one of those perfect combinations!


Wednesday, 7 January 2015

Two New Palettes

I was a very lucky girl this Christmas and was gifted two of what are now my very favourite palettes, one being the most perfect everyday fail-safe go to. The other being able to create the most amazing evening smoky eyes. I love being given make-up for Christmas. I am one of those people that if I don't really need it -I will try and not buy it! So it's lovely to be given something you end up truly loving!

Naked 2 Basics

When the original "basics" palette was released I wasn't really all that interested, I had a little look and play with it when I was in stores but it wasn't one I would have bought. As with the larger Naked's I prefer the cooler tones (Naked 2), I feel they suit me better. So when this lovely little thing was announce I knew I would love it, but at the same time convinced myself I didn't need it (I was totally wrong on the part!). Since opening it on Christmas morning it has been my go-to palette nearly every day. It is a perfect make-up bag size for if you have to travel with it and it offers you so much choice -and if you do want to build up a darker look you can do that with the shade "Undone". Each shade in the palette is matte and they all have a taupe-ish feel to them -taupe shades are one of my favourite to wear.

Laura Mercier Smoky Suede Palette

I knew that I was getting this for Christmas so it wasn't a surprise, but that didn't make opening it any less exciting! Each year my friend and I instead of coming up with what we think the other would like, we go out for the afternoon and decide on something we both like and buy it for each other. It has become a tradition now and we look forward to it each year.

We had spotted this online before seeing it in stores and knew straight away this was the gift. What we hadn't realised until seeing it in stores was that it's a cream shadow palette -this made me love it all the more! I have never tried any Laura Mercier cream shadows but they go on and blend beautifully. They don't come up patchy (like the Maybelline colour tattoos sometimes can) and give a very professional looking finish. I find on me however that they crease very easily without a primer! I can't comment on the shadow sticks or other products in the range but the ones in this palette do. I have used this during the day as well as you can blend the colours out so they aren't as intense and the lightest colour in the lot is such a pretty-all-over-lid-shade. A real shock for me with this palette was the brush! It is a very soft, great quality brush and the pencil end is perfect for doing smoky liner or smudging under the eye. A nice change from normally finding lesser quality brushes in palettes.

 I'm not sure if this particular palette was a limited edition, I have found people online saying it is and it isn't, but it still appears to be in stores so if you like the look of it you should still be able to find it :)


Sunday, 4 January 2015

Made Me Happy This Week

Happy New Year Everyone! 

Did you have a good new years eve? We had a quiet night in with a friend of ours, we got takeaway, Paul and him had a little drink and me...? Well I rang in the new year with a cup of tea lol! I'm not much of a drinker, and if I'm being honest I'm not much for New Year either. It can make me a little sad, Christmas is over again and when the decorations come down everywhere tends to look a little empty. I do find the prospect of a whole new year exciting and I enjoy sitting down with a pen and making lists for what's to come, it just takes me a while to ease into it.

1. Burning a new fresh scented candle to start off a new year. Our candle of choice has been Yankee Candles fluffy towels!

2. Watching all the Harry Potter films in a very short space of time.

3. Making the most random meals with all the food we have left in the house. We do plan to go shopping soon but until then we will continue to be surprised with what we can come up with each night :)

4. Watching way too many episodes of there anyone who doesn't like that show? Or who doesn't miss it!

5. Tidying up and clearing out! I find this so helpful to do after Christmas is over, to find places for new things and give away what you no longer need... "tidy house tidy mind" after all!

6. Making the most of the last of the Christmas holidays with make-up free days, staying in pyjamas and baking -mostly cookies!

7.  Looking for a new diary or planner (or both) -any suggestions? I did want to have one before the new year began but it completely slipped my mind and I am still without one. But I have been enjoying the search for one online. I'm now at that stage where I like to many to choose!

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