Month: December 2016

Something Christmassy

Following Tuesday’s self indulgent misery-fest I thought it was time to bring a bit of festiveness to the blog, as it’s been distinctly absent in recent posts (few and far between as I have posted).

So I thought I’d post some pictures of my Christmas tree and decorations!

(in case you’re interested, my birthday improved considerably when I got home – flowers outside the front door, everything I need to make cocktails including mixing set, martini glasses, recipe book and booze, a future weekend way in a gothic guesthouse in Whitby and a delicious meal with my husband. Lucky wife).

Tree by day and by night

Close ups of my decorations – all purple, white and silver, with glitter, mirror balls, pine cones, jungle bells, beads and snowflakes

These glass angels are my absolute favourite – so delicate.

glass-angel

I’ve got a snowy white wreath on the inside of my front door (this is entwined with tiny fairy lights which I couldn’t capture on a photograph)

I’ve Christmassed up my tall twigs (an Ikea staple!) They’re usually in the lounge but we have to move them into the hall to accommodate the tree)

festive-twigs

How cute is this sparkly wooden sign? I picked it up in Poundland last week for – you guessed it – £1!

winter-welcome

And, to further Christmas the crap out of this post, here’s a fabulous new (to me) festive ditty from Kelly Clarkson that is sure to have you tapping your foot and ready to crack open the Baileys. It’s a new entry into my top 5! (I’m not actually sure what my top 5 is, but this would definitely be in it).

Are you all ready for Christmas? I’d love to see your trees and decorations- send me your links!

Thanks, as always, for reading! x

Its my birthday and I’ll cry if I want to…

its-my-birthday-and-ill-cry-if-i-want-to

Image from Etsy seller Sassy Baby Applique

A slight bastardisation of the Lesley Gore song lyrics, but as I’m not having a party it’s the most appropriate. And I have cried. On and off since Friday. It’s my first birthday without my Dad and I miss him. I miss his daft jokes where he pretended not to know the date or how old I was. I miss how he’d play me up and tell me I wasn’t allowed to open my presents early, even if I wasn’t going to see him on the day. And I miss him phoning me up, and the excitable tone of his voice when he used to say Happy Birthday to me.

I know it’s to be expected, with it being the first Birthday since he died, but I didn’t expect to feel this bereft. This is the worst I’ve felt since his funeral at the end of September.

I’ve had such a lovely weekend too, of live music and old friends and new friends and Christmas market and food and husband. But sometimes feeling happy can make you feel even more sad when it hits.

Anyway, not to be a complete misery guts I’ve busted out some season appropriate clothing – wearing my new velvet boots (present from me to me, via Primark) and my new sequin sleeve top (present from me to me, via Everything 5 Pounds) and I’m trying to have an ok day, even though I’m in the office. I’m also wearing red lippie because it’s fierce and my Dad’s watch so I have a little piece of him with me.

birthday-outfit

I’ve had lots of birthday messages from lots of lovely peeps and I have all my cards and pressies to open when I get home, and the lovely husband is taking me out to dinner.

You know what though? I’d give it all up for 10 more minutes with Dad.

Normal (more upbeat) service will resume soon. Thanks, as always, for reading. x

A love letter to Matalan’s A/W designers

I’m a big fan of Matalan for clothing (and homeware, for that matter) but this season they seem to have really excelled, with so many great pieces that I just had to buy. They’re great value, good quality and very wearable; what’s not to like?

A plethora of tops are now hanging in my wardrobe; the selling point for a lot of these, for me, is the sleeve shape. I love a good bell sleeve top! Along with new skirts and boots too.

Black and white check – £14

black-and-white-check-blouse

Also in navy and plum

blue-and-pink-check-blouse

Flare sleeve smock with neck tie

tie-neck-blouse

Long shirt; love the colours in this

longline-shirt

Off shoulder ditsy print

floral-bardot-blouse

Not sure if this is a dress or long shirt, I love it regardless

black-and-white-dalmatian-print-dress

Leather look skirts; £14 each (so I bought three colours, obvs) These genuinely don’t look like fake leather, which can be horribly plasticy and shiny.

Suede touch buckle boots – (a “take” on a designer style, I love the western buckles)

western-buckle-boots

In truth I could easily have bought more (and may well do in the future!)

Are you a Matalan fan?

Thanks, as always, for reading! x

Boohoo blouses

Anyone else hate the word “blouse”? It seems so cringey and ancient and old fashioned. But it’s the best way I can think to describe the tops I’ve recently bought from Boohoo.
So, what is a blouse? In my mind it doesn’t have buttons and is of a slinky fabric, like a crepe or a none naff polyester. Or a crinkly cheesecloth. Or silk (which is just too much of a ballache to look after so tends to sit crumpled up in my washing basket for an age until I get round to doing some handwashing). It’s a pull on style and not fitted. Something floaty and airy. Good for eating. This is how I’m defining blouses in my wardrobe.
Onto my buys. All from Boohoo and all in the sale. Very pleased I am too.

boohoo-high-neck-ladder-stitch-floral-blouse

The ladder stitching down the front and on the sleeves is see through in between, which I realised when I spotted my bra front in a meeting with my sales director this morning! It’s not very noticeable though, and I don’t have much to flash anyway. It fastens at the back of the neck with one of those tiny fiddly buttons, which I didn’t handle very well at 8am today!

 

boohoo-kimono-sleeve-embellished-blouse

 

 

I adore the kimono style sleeves on this one, and the gorgeous clashing colours. It’s quite ethnic in style and pattern, and has some dangling coin decorations and chunky orange beads sewn on.

 

boohoo-cheesecloth-boho-tunic-blouse

 

This, to me, is the ultimate boho blouse – cheesecloth, embroidery and tassels have one quite similar in cream that I’ve worn heaps. Perfect with black skinny jeans and suede boots during colder months, andbattered denim cutoffs and sandals in summer, it’s a timesless style that will never date.

 

Have you been buying anything new recently? Let me know!

Thanks, as always, for reading. x

 

Five things that are oh so wrong about Time Magazine’s Person of the Year shortlist

Ok Time magazine, are you kidding me right now? I have never heard your shortlist for Person of the Year mentioned in public media. Hell, I didn’t even know you have a Person of the Year award until today!

time-magazine

I can only assume you’ve gone all out with your nominations to try and garner press attention. Because it sure isn’t a list that would reflect the popular vote, and here’s why.

Nigel Farage – that odious fungus on the skin of the Brexit campaign, that smug condescending twat who put his word behind promises that were quite obviously false, the brown nose who is now sniffing around the President Elect. Really? Any credibility gone, right there.

Vladimir Putin – bonkers, nuclear weapon loving, volatile, power hungry all round scary world leader. No further explanation needed.

Beyoncé – OK, sublime to the ridiculous! No disrespect to Bey, but she’s a popstar. She might be a very good popstar (although I don’t see it), but mainly she gets her ass out and shakes that booty. And ignores rumours about her husband’s cheating. How does that compare to politics? (sorry if this is anti-sisterhood, but it’s how I feel).

Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton – nominated (according to Time) for (and I quote) respectively “After campaigning as an anti-establishment, populist candidate, Trump was elected the 45th President of the United States—a stunning end to a presidential bid that repeatedly broke with political precedent” and “the former First Lady, New York Senator and Secretary of State became the first woman to receive the U.S presidential nomination of a major political party”. So, just to clarify, possibly the most divisive, ignorant, bigoted President elect, and his opponent “for being a woman”. Seriously.

This is the worst – the CRISPR Scientists. So wrong on so many levels. Firstly they’re scientific minds who could change the human race, save lives and have done something never EVER done before. Secondly, they’re not even mentioned by name, just a faceless collective of “scientists”. Thirdly, REALLY? They’re not even in the same bloody league as the rest of the nominees. These people, who deserve to be individually named and lauded, deserve a Nobel nomination. Not to be bunched in with an eclectic (and I mean that in a bad way) badly selected, controversial and downright unworthy group of individuals.

If you’d like to read about the full list of Person of the Year nominees, you can find out more here.

Let me know your thoughts!

Thanks, as always, for reading. x

 

 

 

Fuerteventura – Hotel Elba Sara and the Cat Cafe

I’m flabbergasted that it’s only been 4 weeks since I was soaking up the sun in Fuerteventura. It seems like such a long time ago, and almost like it never happened, to be honest. To prove that it did I thought I’d share a few pics!

When we arrived at our booked hotel, we were told that there wasn’t a room available for us due to water damage (the island had experienced some unusually heavy rains. I found out that, because heavy rain is so rare, many of the buildings aren’t fully waterproofed, simply because there is no need.) Panic immediately subsided when the receptionist told us we’d be moved to another hotel in the resort – a better class hotel than we had booked – at no extra cost. Result! They called us a taxi, and off we went to Hotel Elba Sara.

hotel-elba-sara-fuerteventura

hotel-elba-sara-fuerteventura-lobby

hotel-elba-sara-fuerteventura-downstairs

hotel-elba-sara-fuerteventura-pool-and-bar

(images taken from hotel website)

It was, undoubtedly, a very nice hotel but it was just so big! This isn’t the kind of hotel we would usually go for at all, because with a lot of rooms comes a lot of people using the pool/bar/restaurant. That’s not to say it wasn’t lovely, it was, but it wouldn’t be my choice. It was also much further out of the resort than the hotel we’d booked. Having said that, we were only there for 4 days so didn’t have much intention of getting out and about anyway, and with all inclusive running from breakfast time until midnight we were happy to soak up the surroundings and enjoy some chill time.

Mid 20s temperatures and blue skies aren’t to be sniffed at in November!

The hotel grounds were lovely, lots of bright flowers and a lazy river running through the gardens.

We’d noticed quite a few cats wandering around the hotel grounds, and had both commented it was unusual as generally you would expect animals to be kept away from the public. They were all very clean and well kept, very tame and loved to be fussed. Then we can across this. cat-cafe-hotel-elba-sara

It says “We are a small charity, run entirely by volunteers and have been working in Fuerteventura since 1995.Our aim is to humanely manage the homeless cat population. Each cat you see with the left ear tip missing has been sterilised.

We have installed this cat café so visitors can feed the cats here. Please put cat food and biscuits in the bowls provided and not on the surrounding ground or on the base of the café as this attracts the ants and flies. We rely on the visitors to feed the cats and to keep the area clean, a dirty cat café would reflect badly on the cats.

We depend entirely on volunteers and public donations to carry out our work.

Please help us to help the cats of Fuerteventura. Thank you from all of us at “Twinkle” and the puss cats”.

Isn’t that just adorable?! I love that the hotel encourages this instead of shooing the animals away. It shows compassion and understanding.

Here are some pics of the kitties, who were all extremely well behaved and liked being fussed (I think I’d be well behaved and like fuss if I could live in year round sunshine with free food, too!)

Find out more about Twinkle Trust Animal Aid and cat cafes here.

Thanks, as always, for reading! x