My Little Box: The Cosy Edition

So last month I was absolutely gushing over my first delivery of my 'My Little Box' subscription. Last month it was the DVF edition and this month it's time to get all cosy ready for the winter months.

http://www.writersblockandbrokenlenses.com/


This is a great little collection for me because I am ALWAYS cold not matter whether I'm at home or at work. There are even pictures of me on holiday wrapped up in a towel on the beach/ by the pool with blue lips!

So what's in my box?

http://www.writersblockandbrokenlenses.com/

As what seems to be always, the contents of the box were so varied. There's beauty products, keepsakes and another fabulous art print.

http://www.writersblockandbrokenlenses.com/

With beauty, there was everything needed to create the perfect smokey eye, including instructions! Wonderful because this is something I always fail at and I've been desperate for a new eyeliner for a while because mine just leaks down my face and I've been too lazy to go to the shop!


My favourites in the box were this little warm up cushion and espresso mug. I suffer from recurring neck problems and little cushions like this can be the only things that make me feel better and who could not like this mug?

http://www.writersblockandbrokenlenses.com/


Once again I'm so happy I signed up for this box, roll on the next one!

Do you subscribe to a monthly box?

Dates with Charlie - The Cake and Bake Show

BIRD CAKES!

As an avid baker and the resident birthday cake maker at any job I have had, I've wanted to go to the Cake and Bake Show for years but have never seemed to get around to it. However, there was nothing to stop me and Charlie from getting our Mary Berry on and losing our shit.

I have been to Earl's Court for gigs but never for an exhibition so it felt strange to me being full of stands of food but it was very exciting when we saw the best thing ever greeting us. A cake of Mary Berry riding a unicorn. Oh yes. Best thing I have ever seen.



Some of the cakes we saw were absolutely incredible and really put my baking skills to shame and I always thought I was quite good. Apparently this was made by a 10 year old...



Full table for the 'junior' section of the bake-off
That is a cake

In between all the delicious samples of food and very exciting bake ware, we even bumped in to a couple of familiar faces and our lives were complete.

YEAH! BAKE OFF! Where's the pencil?
After we had got over our bake off excitement, we went for a proper wander around the stalls, tried all the icing and samples we could, bought Gin and Tonic flavoured meringue (not as nice as it sounds...) admired yet more cakes and even spent  money on a Magic Knife. Dude, it's magic.

This made the whole place smell of vanilla

You could make your own cake stand out of whatever plates you wanted!

THESE PLATES!


These meringues put mine to shame!


Weighed down by purchases, freebies and very full bellies, it was time to go home, but not before we got the inevitable photos with a sign. 


Jaffa Cake icing sugar and enough vanilla essence to last me about a year. MAGIC KNIFE!

This post is very delayed but did you get to go to the Cake and Bake show?


Ted Baker Royal Mint at Selfridges

Last week Selfridges ran a selection of pop up events with a bunch of my favourite brands including Nails Inc and a moment to meet Alexa Chung.

However! If you haven't already guessed from previous posts I am obsessed with Ted Baker and would take any excuse to lust over their stuff from dresses to accessories, so obviously I went to their Royal Mint pop up!

Not sure what's more exciting, the bags or the ponies?
What could be more exciting than having two gold horses greet you with handbags? Nothing? That's right.

For such a small pop up, the Royal Mint felt huge to me purely because there was so much colour and sparkle that I wanted to make sure I had seen everything. There were so many things I hadn't seen before (I have banned myself from their website) and started to build an unrealistic Christmas Wish list.



There are no words to describe how much I want ALL of these!




Obviously I didn't just go so I could perv over all the accessories, I also went because I was aware of goodie bags being given away. Who could say no?

Me looking very proud with my goodie bag
Inside there was a variety of things, obviously a variety of things. We were a little too late for the main goodie bag but when my boyfriend heard the words 'gift with purchase' he thought he'd be nice and get me a little something. Unfortunately it wasn't a dress but I can forgive him.

So what was in this bag?







The cute little Christmas cracker with the nail polish was the little gift from Gary so I could get the rest of the goodies. It's a delightful shade of pink I haven't tried yet and am really looking forward to.

I also got a tote bag, pen, badge, GIANT CHOCOLATE COIN and a bottle of their perfume Polly. It's spicier than a perfume I would normally wear but is lovely all the same.

Did you go to any of the pop-ups at Selfridges last week?

What I've been reading: The Hundred Year Old Man who climbed out the window and disappeared

Pretty much everyone I know has been talking about this book so it was about time I read it to see what all the fuss was about especially since it's already been made into a movie.

I wanted to like this book so much so it upset me that it took a while before I really got into it. Luckily I got there and absolutely loved it.

The Hundred Year Old Man


The Hundred Year Old Man Who Climbed out the Window and Disappeared is about, well, a hundred year old man! His name is Allan and on his hundredth birthday he's decided he's sick of the retirement home way of life and just buggers off out the window. Pretty much what it says on the tin!

Following his escape from retirement home hell, Allan embarks on an adventure across Sweden and we learn more about his previous adventures through life and how he had an involvement in some of the most important moments in history.

Once I finally got into it, this book was hilarious and there wasn't a single character I didn't like. It was so different to the second book The Girl Who Saved the King of Sweden which I was so disappointed with.

If you want to keep up to date with everything I'm reading, you can follow me on Goodreads!

The Christmas Tag

I haven't been tagged for this but I was linked to in a friend's blog post so I'm pretending that counts. Also, I bloody love Christmas so nothing would have stopped me anyway. Plus, I love doing these little 'tag' posts because it gives me an opportunity to talk more about me and things I wouldn't necessarily think of!

Christmas Stockings at my dad's house last year

1. What's your favourite Christmas movie/s?

I have so many that I could go on forever however, we all know it's not really Christmas until Miracle on 34th Street has been watched. Twice.

2. Do you open presents on Christmas Eve or Christmas morning?

We have always opened our presents on Christmas morning. This is even more important now that we have young children in the family.

Dad's Christmas tree last year

3. Do you have a favourite Christmas memory?

I don't really have a specific favourite memory but one I tend to talk about a lot is the year my brother and I got the first Playstation and spent HOURS playing Croc: Legend of the Gobbos!

4. What's your favourite festive food?

It has to be my mum's roast potatoes without a doubt, whether they're cooked in marmite or goose fat! One year she was convinced I wouldn't eat all my dinner and said that if I did she'd make me a whole tray to myself as a reward. I'm still waiting for that tray of roast potatoes, I earned them God damn it!

5. What's been your favourite Christmas gift?

Obviously there has been so many but it's got to be my Cornet. I had been loaning them since I was 9/10 and finally got one all to myself. 

6. What's your favourite Christmas scent?

It has got to be mulled wine, it's absolutely amazing and because I tend to make it in the slow cooker, the house smells amazing for hours.

7.  Do you have a Christmas Eve tradition?

Obviously when we were little it was getting everything ready for Father Christmas, which I have been able to start doing again because of the younglings in the family. Amazing. Other than that, the only real CHRISTMAS tradition we have is making sure there are ridiculous clues on the presents. It wouldn't be Christmas without them and I'm always slightly disappointed if my Grampy hasn't put something hilarious on mine.

8. What tops your tree?

For years it was one of those little Angels you made at school out of toilet roll tubes. It was only until a couple of years ago that my dad stopped putting it up! Now we tend to go for a star but we always have my Jack Skellington as Father Christmas somewhere on the tree.


And I will always be putting my 'A' on every tree from where Charlie and I had our initials on our tree while living together.

Close-up of mine and Charlie's first Christmas tree

9. As a kid, what was the one (crazy, extravagent) gift you wanted but never got?

Obviously a pony.

10. What do you think is the best part of Christmas

I love absolutely everything about Christmas, I love seeing all the houses and streets lit up, tacky Christmas jumpers and the songs that we pretend we're sick of hearing but insist on singing along to every time. Most importantly, spending time with my family is at the top. Most of my family live in Scotland now so it gives me more of an opportunity to go up there as sometimes it's not always possible. After all, it wouldn't be Christmas without them.

I kind of jumped in on this and can't think of any one to tag! As Charlie has already done it I think:

Emma from Bunny Pudding
Katy from Little Miss Katy
Jemma from Dorkface

The Liebster Award



First and foremost I'd like to thank Jen from The Lucky Diamond for sending this my way.

What is the Liebster Award, from what I understand from reading other posts, it's kind of like blogger to blogger recognition, nominating your favourite bloggers to learn more about your little community and to keep the conversation going. Kind of like a chain letter from the 1990s but more interesting. I mean, you're not going to get 10 years of bad luck for not doing it and it's actually a lot of fun.

With this I had to think more about myself because it was actually surprisingly difficult for me as I have a tendency to take a lot of things for granted, all of these little things that make up my personality and make me, well, me! But here we go!

Provide 11 facts about yourself

  1. I was diagnosed with epilepsy two years ago. It was a right struggle for me, my friends and family and took a while to get my meds in the right balance. Luckily it looks as though they're starting to become more under control but I have the odd seizure every now and again. FUN.
  2. I have a fear of beans. All beans. Once my manager left a handful of jelly beans on my desk and I completely freaked out. There were tears.
  3. I started ballroom dancing when I was 11 and actually have an award to show that I'm at instructor level! I haven't danced for years but my Paso Doble is still the shit.
  4. I did a film making degree at university and think of cameras as porn as weird as that sounds.
  5. I'm a massive geek. Obviously this is becoming a bit of a trend now but I honestly don't remember a time when I wasn't one.
  6. I play 4 musical instruments. This started with the Cornet when I was 9 then moved on to the Piano, Bass Guitar and I taught myself how to play the Ukulele.
  7. I collect clocks and watches, if I had the money I have no idea how many I would have . My friend Charlie even bought me a tea pot in the shape of one!
  8. I suffered through depression during my teenage years but managed to get out of it which isn't easy to do and where I can I try and help others find their way out.
  9. I can watch Beauty and the Beast in my head if I can't sleep. I know it word for word and even know the score.
  10. I am stubborn as F***.
  11. I worked at La Senza when I first moved to London and as a result I have so much underwear I don't have a drawer, I have a huge wooden trunk. Somehow I always want to buy more though.

Questions from the blogger who nominated you

  1. If you could choose between money, love and happiness, what would it be?

    I would have to say love. Love can make you the happiest and as much as we would all like more money, can you honestly live without love?
  2. What's your favourite makeup brand?

    It would have to be Benefit but I got to Barry M for brightly coloured eyeshadows and nail polish.
  3. Have you ever lost motivation to blog?

    I haven't yet but I do struggle to make time sometimes because I work in PR and I always end up focused on other people's strategy and data! Occasionally I forget to take photos for certain posts and end up not posting them.
  4. What's your favourite food?

    Probably pie... yeah, definitely pie.
  5. What hyped up makeup product do you hate?

    There's no particular product or brand but I'm completely against animal testing.
  6. Is your hair natural or dyed?

    Dyed, it's been so many colours over the years it's difficult to remember what my natural hair colour actually looks like...
  7. Tattoos - do you like them/do you have any?

    I LOVE tattoos. I have seven right now but one of them is still a work in progress due to funding! I'm already itching to get more done but will probably end up getting something small just to get it out of my system...
  8. Do you have a schedule for your blog?

    I never used to but I'm now going through a futile attempt to get organised. I have been sticking to it so far but if something comes up, I'll just throw it in there.
  9. Marmite? Love it or hate it?
    Totally love it. Even off the spoon. Marmite roast potatoes are the best too!
  10. Who would you be for a day?

    Beyonce. Pretty sure this doesn't require an explanation.
  11. Who's your girl crush?

    I actually have many. I think Karen Gillan is top at the moment though.

My questions for you:

  1. Do you have an old man crush? Who is it and why?
  2. Who would win in a fight, Yoda, Dumbledore or Gandalf?
  3. If you were stuck on a desert island, what book would you have with you?
  4. What is your favourite item of clothing that you could not live without?
  5. Do you have a hidden talent?
  6. Beards - yay or nay?
  7. If you could live in one movie, what would it be and why?
  8. Who would play you in the movie of your life (for me it would be Ellen Page)?
  9. What freaks you out the most?
  10. Do you straighten or curl your hair?
  11. Would you ever get a tattoo and what it would it be?
I can't really think of anyone I'd like to tag but I think Emma from Bunny Pudding, Lauren from What Lauren Did Today, and Beth from Sans Souci would enjoy it! And now the lovely Leah and Rachel from Beyond the Velvet :-)

If any one else I know wants to do it, just go ahead :-)

Product Review: 'It's Potent!'

It's really hard finding a good eye cream, they always claim to work miracles. I'm a sucker for these empty promises so it's taken quite a lot of trial and error.

Until recently I was using another eye cream and it was great for a while but as it's getting colder and my skin is turning against me, it reached the point where I would put it on at night and would have my eyes watering after five minutes because oh dear God did it burn. It's absolutely pointless to me having to have a different eye cream depending on what your skill feels like doing at the time. They're not cheap afterall!



After some hunting around I decided to return to the trusty Benefit. I explaine my skin woes to Vikki while havin my monthly treat (eyebrow waxing for the win) and she pointed me in the direction of 'It's Potent'. I use a lot of Benefit stuff but had never tried this one before and as I've never had any problems with anything else, I thought why not?

It says it''s to reduce dark circles and fine lines... Luckily I don't have any fine lines yet but I do get dark patches under my eyes which I'm constantly trying to hide with concealer. Not really handy if I've woken up late and end up with streaks...

I've been using 'It's Potent' for over a month now and the dark circles have started to disappear completely and, better yet, I suffer from puffy eye syndrome and it's totally less noticeable not. Not sure about you but I get really puffy swollen eyes if I cry and after using this cream it's no where near as bad first thing the next morning. It's a hero cream.

Have you started to use eye creams yet? Which is your favourite?

#WallOfSilence

It seems like these #selfie campaigns are everywhere recently as people seem to be jumping on the success of #NoMakeupSelfie. I haven't taken part in most of them and I have felt a bit like a Grinch but this is one I could not ignore.

Domestic violence is a subject that's very close to my heart as I have seen a family member not only go through it but also survive. Despite all the struggles she is one of the strongest women I have ever known.

She was lucky, there are many women out there who wouldn't be here to tell their tale without the support of Refuge or Women's Aid as at least 2 women a week die as a result of domestic violence in the UK alone.

Domestic violence isn't a secret but we just don't talk about it. It's reasons like this that make women across the country feel like they can't speak, they wouldn't be heard if they did. That's the whole point of #wallofsilence. We need to break it down and help these women find a voice.


Upload your selfie today using #WallofSilence and tag @Avon_UK, @RefugeCharity and @WomensAid and Avon will donate £1. You can also do as I have done and text WALL to 70500 to donate £5.

While you're at it, watch this emotional response from the legendary Sir Patrick Stewart on domestic violence.


My Little Box - DVF Edition

I've been wanting to sign up to one of these little monthly boxes for a while. I rarely get post and when I do it's normally Student Finance kindly reminding me how much money I owe, bills and bank statements. It's soul destroying.

I've seen a lot of bloggers raving about 'My Little Box' and as it's more than just a beauty box, fashion box etc, I immediately signed up and started counting down the days until it arrived. Totally worth the wait when I saw my first box was a collaboration with the woman who graced us with the wrap dress! Diane von Furstenberg!

Just look how pretty the box is!
Everything in the box is so beautiful and the 'be the woman you want to be' art print adds a really wonderful touch. I'll definitely be putting it in a frame.

What's inside...

The box came with a broach, toiletries and (my favourite) a gorgeous DVF scarf! I bloody love scarves so it's like it was meant to be!




Better yet, the scarf came wrapped in a little box with instructions on different ways you can wear it. Can't wait to try them out!


What little monthly boxes to you subscribe to?

October on Instagram

October is my favourite month, it's strange to think you can have a favourite month but here's my reasoning:
  1. It's not sweltering hot and not too cold. All you need is a jacket and maybe a scarf but other than that you're all cool.
  2. M.Y. B.I.R.T.H.D.A.Y
  3. Leaves falling everywhere and the joy of jumping into a big pile of them
  4. Halloween!
  5. Christmas isn't too far away but not close enough where you're a giant ball of stress
To keep it short and sweet, here's a snapshot of the things I got up to in October.


1. I got to attend the Art Finder Pop-Up event
2. Saw a man carrying a dog on his shoulders on the Tube!
3. Was spoiled by my boyfriend after a busy day at work
4. Random spurt of busy rain made me stuck outside the office - minor flood and suede shoes? Hell no


1. That time my boyfriend helped me dye my hair and I looked like an Alien freak
2. Timehop reminded me of my last holiday with some of the best people in the world
3. Getting all excited about Autumn and the leaves everywhere
4. Travelling up to Scotland in my Hogwarts jumper!


1. I spent the weekend hanging out with a very handsome puppy...
2. ... AND KITTENS


1. Being all productive and having Blog planning sessions in Starbucks
2. Had balloons thrown all over me at exactly midnight for my birthday
3. Birthday lunch - slow cooked beef brisket that was bigger than my face. Didn't finish it

What did you get up to in October?