29 April 2015

TAKING STOCK | APRIL 2015

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^^ This gorgeous image is by Emily Quinton (mentioned below), sourced from her Pinterest page^^

Making | spring wardrobe purchases. I now have some basics again, mini mexican wave to me :-)
Cooking | spiralized vegetables and loving them! No bloating for me (was that over-sharing?!). 
Drinking | Juice Plus shakes everyday and feeling pretty good for it (so far anyway!).
Reading | nothing much this month...put it this way, I have over 700 unread Bloglovin' posts. Good heavens.
Wanting | a Bobbi Brown corrector to cover up my dark circles. That is a selfish 'want' I know.
Looking | at perfumes on-line. Turns out this is pretty pointless as I am only really looking at pretty bottles, but I have no perfume at all. Probably should go to an actual shop where I can sniff the fine scents of...whatever they put in there (can you tell I know zip about perfume?!).
Playing | Our wedding songs on Spotify a few dozen times. We had a small handful of songs playing in the background whilst we signed the register etc, including this one and this one too.
Deciding | what Ella Masters prints to buy, I think they'd make a fab addition to our home. My favourites are this Vincent Van Gogh quote and this pretty, floral quote too.
Wishing | I wasn't quite so highly strung all the time and could care slightly less about one or two minor things.
Enjoying | family movie night. By 'family' I mean Joe and I plus the cat on a lap (never mine, always Joes...his legs are longer and allow for more stretchy times!).
Waiting | for deliveries, always waiting for deliveries!
Liking | the feeling of positivity I have going on right now. 
Wondering | why I've never applied foundation on with a damp sponge before. It's as near as I'm gonna get to air-brushed people! Loving it. Going to treat myself to one of those beauty blender whatsits!  
Loving | choosing our wedding photos to print out <3
Hoping | by this time next year I will be in business...literally, even in a small way!
Marvelling | at how ruddy complicated Google Adsense is. Thanks Google, thanks a lot.
Needing | a FitBit. I really want one of those babies!
Smelling | fast food as I pull off the A303 on the way home. I hate fast food but when I am starving it smells good. Someone help me...I'm going over to the dark side. No calories in sniffing though right?
Wearing | my cheap as chips Tescos training leggings and my H & M (sale bargain) sweater. These leggings are so soft and have the best waist band ever invented, i.e.wide. I swear I am in danger of wearing nothing but these leggings forever more. Pair those with my new 'sale' jumper (as it will be forever known), which is super over-sized but I love it for that exact reason, and I have myself a party! I may resemble a bag-lady, but I am as happy as a pig in a flower bed wearing this 'outfit'. 
Following | Emily Quinton's amazing Instagram. She's all about the pretty pictures, I adore every picture she puts up because they just make me feel all gooey inside! (She has also just brought out a book which I am beyond desperate to buy. It is called 'Makers Spaces'...come on payday!).
Noticing | (whilst watering the garden) how much I have learnt about myself over the last few years and realising that, although I have a long way to go, I am stronger than I think. Getting deep whilst feeding those flowers ladies and gents!
Knowing | that, no matter what you do, there will always be some people who just don't want to know (even if you really, really wish they cared).
Thinking | about pizza. A lot.
Feeling | achy in my poor knuckles. Am I getting arthritis? (or 'Arthur' as my Dad says). So painful.
Opening | countless punnets of strawberries, seriously, there have been too may consumed to keep count this month (I'm starting to grow green leaves out the top of my head).
Giggling | at my own jokes, terrible ones. E.g. Student says to me: 'Miss, have you had a mouse handed in, I left one in the library and they said it was in reception now' Me 'We have one I think, how long is his tail? Has it eaten recently?'.
Kids face = mildy amused, but mostly wishing the ground would open up so he could either jump in or push me in.

How has April been for you? Pop some of your 'taking stock' highlights in the comments!
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27 April 2015

SPRING HAIR IDEAS!

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This may seem like a bit of a strange post for me as I only usually post a little about beauty, and that is usually make up. I rarely post about hair as, other than wearing it down, I am a bit rubbish with it. This is mostly down to the fact that my hair is super fine (although I have lots of it) and slippery and therefore it refuses to do anything I want. A stint on the naughty step is long overdue.

On the run up to our wedding day I was on a mission to try out various ways to wear my hair, as I was doing it myself, and must have tried handfuls of products to add texture, hold and shine, without drying my poor, over-worked mop out. To be totally honest, it wasn't until after the wedding that I figured out the right combination of products, but not many products would've held my unruly mane against sea spray and gusty winds! (See video below to find out more).

Recently I have also been pinning many styles to try out on my Happy Hair Pinterest board too, here are a few of my favourites:

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Images from Pinterest: 1. Gorgeous loose braid / 2. Effortless braid with messy low bun / 3. Boho curly-braided top-knot

1:: I am having a bit of a braid obsessed moment right now, maybe an early mid-life crisis? I have always thought of myself as a bit of a boho-loving girlie, which is why I am drawn to these loose braids, casually pinned back and pulled loose.

2:: I guess the first two are similar but I love how this one is also scraped back into a very messy, low bun; something I try to replicate in my video and have been wearing a whole lot since the weather warmed up a notch.

3:: I haven't tried this pretty style yet as I find it so hard to braid backwards with my own hair, but I think this is super cute.

I feel this is a good time to throw in what I have been doing with my hair of late. Below my video I have linked to other YouTube videos that I watched for inspiration and absolutely love! Check them out too! (Please click on through to my main video here to subscribe and leave any comments!).


The YouTube videos on hair style that I have been obsessed with of late are...

:: Ingrid Nilsen's '3 Cute & Easy Hairstyles for Medium Hair' - I have watched this video so many times because I love Ingrid but there are some sweet ideas here and they are so simple. I also like her 'Peek-A-Boo Mini Braid' video for its subtlety and low level of skill requirement! (suits me just fine!).

:: Now, this lovely lady I adore, she is so easy to watch and really funny and cute to boot (oooh, a rhyme!). I am talking about Alex, from the YouTube channel 'Beautyosauruslex' <3 I particularly liked her 'Favourite Braided Hairstyles' and 'Three Summer Braids' tutorials, but you should check her out general as her videos are awesome (and she has a cute little dog that is often laying in the background!)

:: Tina's video on 'Three Headband Braids' was one I watched a lot when trialling wedding styles also. She makes it look so easy!

:: Finally, I think Alix, from the blog and YouTube Channel 'I Covet Thee' looks fab with this little fishtail fringe braid. I am yet to try this but think it is really sweet.

If you haven't watched my video yet then why not click on there and listen to me waffle on about my top hairstyles (I use that word loosely!) and products I am enjoying right now.

Have a fab day guys :-)
xoxo
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24 April 2015

FIVE THINGS I AM GRATEFUL FOR THIS WEEK #16

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^^Our little tree has bloomed & it's so pretty!^^

After being back at work for one whole week I am officially have my smug Friday face on today. You tend to lose the enthusiasm for a Friday when you are on your holidays don't you; Monday is the new Friday when you are away! I hit the ground running this week and, by Tuesday afternoon, had managed to clear my email inbox at work...yep, there was a slight pile up of emails that needed answering. Despite one colleague advising me to 'just delete them all' I powered through! Go me!

All in all it has been a fab week, even though I got home from work yesterday afternoon, barely said two words to the hubby before collapsing into a heap on our bed for a two hour snooze. Not sure why I felt so worn out, not like me at all. Pesky school germs worming their way into my immune system maybe.

Let's get on to the highlights of my week! Here are the five things I am most grateful for...

1. Finally meeting up with the gorgeous H. The power of the tinterweb means that sometimes you can become friends with people who are fab! I can't remember how long ago it was (to be honest, I can't remember yesterday that well!) but H sent me an email in response to a post I put up on here and we became email buddies. After chatting, and realising that we are practically identical in most ways, we decided to meet up and size each other up. I mean, if you have a 'life twin' you really should make an effort! She's fab, our 'first date' was a good one (!) and we may even see each other again, there, I said it. 

2. My first Skype session with (another) fantastic lady. I have mentioned a few times that I have signed up to be part of the amazing 'Inner Circle' group with Gemma Sands, but on top of that I have been lucky enough to be offered some 1-2-1 coaching too (so exciting!). So, on Wednesday this week I had my first coaching session with Gemma. It is all done over Skype, which I really like as it is so easy and allows you to feel like you are sat in the same room as each other (which you kind of are really I guess!). The first session was a nice, relaxed 'getting to know you' kind of chat and I really enjoyed it. I felt anxious having to put myself out there, but I am a firm believer in taking myself out the dreaded comfort zone and felt good for doing it. If you fancy finding out a bot more about what Gemma does head to her business website or her lovely blog for more information.

3. Thursday night fajitas. As I may have mentioned, I am currently trying out Juice Plus (I'm still editing a little update vlog but not sure if I should put it up, it's not great!). I am also using the app My Fitness Pal again to track everything I am eating and doing (have you tried it?). We have fajitas as a semi treat meal but I just make sure that I am not having sour cream or too much cheese (I have a teeny, tiny sprinkle for taste!). After my two hour nap yesterday those fajitas were just what the doctor ordered let me tell you! Yum-central. Wow, my mouth is watering just thinking about them now...

4. Receiving a sweet email from a lovely reader, another H actually. I won't go into details as it was personal but what a lovely thing it is to know that some of my wafflings mean something to someone. Thank you H for getting in touch (not sure if you saw my response) - I appreciate hearing from you, it means a lot. xx

5. This wonderful new addition to my make up stash (like I needed it...I really didn't need it!). I gave in to all of the hype and grabbed myself a tube of the L'Oreal Infallible Matte Foundation (my shade is Vanilla, no:11). I am one of those annoying people who hear a lot about a product and then rebel against getting it...then get it anyway. For heavens sake, it was only £6.99, which I now know is a bargain as it is effing amazing. I have the original Infallible make up which is okay-ish (hence I wasn't in a rush to get the matte one). The one I already have is heavy, but this new one is amazing. It covers well, feels light-weight and stays put. What more do you need! If you have dry skin it may not suit, unless you hydrate well before application, but for the price point you can almost afford to give it a shot :-)

Other things I have been doing this week...
Trying (and kind of failing) to build a spring playlist on Spotify / Watching Ingrid Nilson's old New York vlogs whilst I get ready for work in the mornings, for inspiration about seizing the moment! / lusting after Mac lipsticks on-line / trying to decide what perfume I should buy now that I am completely out...I mean, totally / thinking about home-made pizza (a lot)

What have you guys been up to? Let me know in the comments (please link your blogs/YouTubes also, if you have them!).
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22 April 2015

THE MYSTERY OF ANXIETY

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{Image sourced from Pinterest | Original source unknown}

I have spoken a couple of times about anxiety on here (you can find one post here and another here). It is something I struggle with everyday, despite appearances. People often comment that they think it is strange that I can put videos up on YouTube and yet can’t leave the house on some days. Doing a video, in your own house, with no one around, is totally different to leaving the house and surrounding yourself with strangers all rushing to get somewhere, trust me. Plus, it took a long time to get the confidence to put something out there, you know?! Hearing your voice and seeing your face and body from the angles that you never usually do is horrifying. I found it, and still find it, unbearable at times.

Anyway, I have gone off subject slightly.

The reason I am writing this post right now is because I am currently sat in a coffee shop in Salisbury, crapping my pants (not literally, panic ye not). I find going into town alone excruciatingly difficult. I had to come in this week as most of the tops I own have gigantic holes in, and the sun is out, so unless I plan on wearing thick, woolly jumpers forever, I figured I should treat myself to some new bits and pieces. I planned to venture in yesterday, but found one of my amazing excuses not to, i.e. spring cleaning (the entire house, all day). Good work Lucy, good work. But today I had no excuse, so set my alarm for 7.00am (yep, I have to psyche myself up BIG time). I got out of bed feeling good, not overly worried but jittery. I put my make up on, threw my hair up and planned to leave by 7.45am and head for a coffee shop to ‘test’ myself in a public place and attempt to work a while.

All I had to do was get dressed. This was where it all fell apart.

I know it is very common for girls to try on everything in their wardrobe, but I find this part so hard. Everything I put on makes me feel like a… there are no words to describe how I feel actually. I go from feeling fine to feeling awkward, clumsy, strange, dizzy, faint, sick, childlike…bla, bla, bla. After losing my temper and yelling at myself a bit, I realise I have totally ruined my mindset. But I needed to get out the house so, as usual, did a bit of mental coaching on my stupid brain! By this point I am no longer feeling strong, just very self-conscious and extremely fragile (not to mention majorly pi**ed off that I have changed my mood so quickly).

So, as I mentioned at the start, I am in a coffee shop typing this, but it is now 10.20am. It took me ages to get here. I flit around in town like some kind of secret agent wannabe. I feel I look suspicious, which, to be honest, I probably do because I cannot act normal here, not in this environment. I don’t have Joes hand to hold and his constant (and very amazing) reassurance that I am not going to keel over and die just shopping for half an hour.

What’s next then? Next is a trip to replace the holy t-shirts…wish me luck...*

* I am here to tell you I survived. This is going up several days post-coffee-shop-writing and I want to add that I feel proud of myself that I pushed out of my comfort zone and went through with all I needed to do. Once, when I was having Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, I was advised not to use 'safety behaviours'. For me, safty behaviours are things like calling Joe or leaving the situation, rather than riding the storm and letting it get as bad as it can get, so that the peaks of anxiety finally start to dip. This does make sense. If you dive home at the first sign of trouble then you never know what would have happened and, therefore, always build made-up scenarios in your mind that are usually much worse in their outcomes than what the reality may have been.

I put this post up to allow people a bit of an insight into my world away from this space as it is easy to come across as confident and edit out parts of life that you struggle with, but in reality, these things are my real life, and for me take up a lot of time and energy.

Feel free to get in touch if you want to chat about anxiety of have a story to share. If you have anything you feel you would like to share I can publish your thoughts here anonymously or otherwise! Get in touch via the comments below or via email on fromlucywithlove@outlook.com.

Thank you for reading.
xoxo
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20 April 2015

APRILS BIRCH BOX

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It's Monday and time for another beauty post! I feel like my blog has been a little video heavy recently due to the wedding vlogs, apologies if you don't dig the videos, there are actual posts coming up this week too! 

On to today's video. I have put up a (slightly late) Birch Box video for you today. This box was actually really good! I think there is only one product that I won't be using but the rest are surprisingly useful, especially the hair oil/serum and a fantastic face primer too (but you will have to watch the video to see more, so click play below and get watching!).

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19 April 2015

OUR CORNISH WEDDING VLOG #2

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Part Two of our jaunt to Cornwall is ready for your viewing pleasure! I had what felt like a million clips to look through and so many were me yelling over extremely loud wind high up on the coast somewhere, so many things had to be muted or cut completely! My apologies if you were hoping for a bit more detail but, as I mention in the video, it was our honeymoon so I didn't want to be constantly chatting on camera...it may have been the shortest marriage ever!

Some of the places we visit in this video have been vlogged by me before. If you are interested, you can find all my 'Cornwall Vlogs' (as well as a few others) on this YouTube playlist...check them out if you like :-)

I hope you enjoy this video, please subscribe to my YouTube Channel to keep up with all my uploads, of which there are quite a few (and not all get put on here!).


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17 April 2015

FIVE THINGS I AM GRATEFUL FOR THIS WEEK #15

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{This pretty picture was sourced from Pinterest, original found here}

Why is it that Fridays zoom around when you are on a holiday from work, darn the speed of holiday time! I am sure it works differently, like being on the edge of a black hole and being back on Earth time-weirdness, you know? (Can you guess who's been watching 'Interstellar'? Yep, me!). Enough space/time strange talk, how are you guys? If you are reading this in the UK, have you been lapping up the summer-like weather we've been having? Isn't it lovely?! If you are not in the UK I would love you to comment below and tell me what country you are reading from, honestly, I would love to know!

I have been enjoying my last few days of holiday from work. These last three weeks have been truly awesome and have also flown by like mad! I go back to work on Monday a wife, which is fab, the sun is out, which is great and it is spring...woo-hoo! 

Here is what else I have been grateful for this week:

1. Getting home from our break in Cornwall and picking up our little Gizmo from her holiday at the 'Cat Hotel' (that is what it is called but I'm pretty sure she wouldn't agree with the holiday comment!). Because we adopted Gizmo last year we have no idea if she has spent time in a cattery at any point but this was the longest we have ever left her anywhere. She was pretty much back to normal around the house within a couple of hours, after checking that all the rooms were still there and all her bowls were present and correct! Bless her, we missed her so much!

2. Smoked beet-root. Yep, I am going there. Basically, this shredded, smoky goodness is the diet equivalent of chocolate digestives to me right now (I'd kill for tea and a BIG pile of biscuits today by the way... better go to the fridge and get me some beet-root!).

3. Spending an hour in the grounds of Salisbury Cathedral with L and J. We hit up Marks and Spencers food hall and armed with green juice, blueberries, strawberries and a couple of trashy magazine (sorry, this had to be done!) we set up temporary camp on the grass and watched the small girly run about in the sun for a while, stealing our berries and not caring a jot! (She also ended up looking a little like Anthony Hopkins in Silence of the Lambs with all that strawberry juice around her chops... somewhat eerie on a baby, on anyone actually!).

4. Finally completing a ma-hoo-sive spring clean in the house. This is one of the first things I did when we got back from Cornwall and it took all darn day, but boy did it feel good! I chucked away things that I have been hanging onto for ages and filed away stacks of paperwork. I'm telling you, if you feel head-cluttered, then just do a clear out, it's awesome!

5. Receiving the cutest wedding card from a very special person (in the prettiest envelope ever!). Thank you J, you are lovely! Not sure if you will see this but I hope you are doing good and I can't wait to see you soon.

I hope you all have an amazing weekend. 

PS: If you saw Part One of our little vlog from Cornwall then keep your eyes peeled for Part Two this weekend!
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15 April 2015

TURKEY MEATBALLS WITH CHORIZO & TOMATO SAUCE SERVED ON COURGETTE SPAGHETTI

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Turkey meatballs are something I make fairly often, but usually I serve them up on some boiled white rice or with a jacket potato (I know, classy!). Without wishing to give you too much information, or 'TMI' as the young-ens say, my body does not like me eating rice, pasta or potatoes (other than sweet potatoes), so I thought I would switch things up and serve it with veggies!

I should probably use this opportunity to tell you that I have a new best friend. My spiralizer. I love it. I got mine for £14.99 from Amazon. It is not like me to be 'trendy' and purchase something that is being used all over the show, by glamorous people like the Hemsley sisters or the beautiful Ella, from the blog (and book) Deliciously Ella, but I actually saw a purpose for this gadget and I really do love it!

As we all know, I am no chef or kitchen whiz but thought I would share this little meal with you, I hope you enjoy!

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(Side note: I always make a large batch of sauce as it pads out the meatballs and means I can get two or three meals out of it for Joe and I - they also freeze well. If you want less sauce only use one tin of chopped tomatoes and one onion. One normal container of turkey mince usually makes about 20 meat balls). 

Ingredients
:: Turkey mince
:: 2 tins of chopped tomatoes
:: 2-3 garlic cloves
:: 2 red onions
:: 2-3 table spoons of tomato puree
:: Chilli paste or fresh chillis finely chopped
:: 1 egg
:: Chorizo
:: Mixed herbs, salt and pepper for seasoning
:: Courgettes (usually one per person)
:: Coconut oil

How to:

Make the sauce
:: Roughly chop two red onions and pop them into a pan with a little oil (I use coconut oil)
:: Add two or three crushed (or finely chopped) cloves of garlic and add to the pan
:: Stir the onions and garlic together until the onions are softened
:: Add two tins of chopped tomatoes and stir (allow this to simmer gently and reduce down)
:: Add a couple of table spoons of tomato puree and stir in
:: Add a teaspoon of chilli paste or fresh chilli's and stir in
:: Add any seasoning you would like (I added a small amount of salt, pepper and dried mixed herbs as I had no fresh ones to hand, but add fresh if you would like)
:: Allow this sauce to reduce down on a gentle heat whilst you cook the meat balls.

Whilst the sauce is cooking I chop up my chorizo and cook it in a pan with no additional oil (it will cook perfectly in its own fat). Once cooked, tip it out into a bowl, lined with kitchen roll, and allow the excess fat to absorb into the tissue. Leave the chorizo to one side for now.

Make the meatballs
You can add extra ingredients to the meat balls if you would like (e.g. finely chopped onions and garlic or chilli’s) but I kept mine simple and added most of the ingredients to the sauce.

:: Put your turkey mince into a bowl
:: Add one egg
:: Add in any seasoning you would like (remember you put some in the sauce too!)
:: As turkey mince varies depending on the quality of the meat it may be slightly watery. If it is, you may wish to add some bread crumbs to the mixture. My meat was fairly wet but I didn’t want to add bread so just worked with it and it was fine (just messy!)
:: Use your hands to work the egg into the meat and really squeeze all the ingredients together.
:: If you are using coconut oil rub a small amount onto your frying pan. If you are using olive oil the best thing to do is to have a small saucer of oil at hand and as you ball the meat up rub some oil lightly around the ball before placing it onto a dry pan
:: Ball up all the mixture and add all the balls to your pan
:: Cook, turning regularly for approximately 15-20 minutes (this depends on the size you have made – I recommend cutting into one to see if it is cooked. Try not to over cook, as turkey can go fairly dry).
:: Once cooked add the meatballs and the chorizo to the sauce and stir in. Turn off the heat and allow to stand whilst you make the courgette spaghetti.

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Make the courgette spaghetti
Ideally you need a spiralizer or you can cut the courgette very finely – where there’s a will, there’s a way!

For two people I used two courgettes.

:: Simply spiralize or chop your courgette (wash first).
:: To cook you can either pop the courgette into a pot of boiling water for 20-60 seconds or add to a pan with a very, very small amount of coconut oil (or oil of your choice) and toss in the pan for 3-5 minutes. The idea is to soften the courghetti, not to turn it golden brown…or black!

Once cooked simply serve!

There you have it! I hope you enjoy. If you make it please tag (@fromlucywithloveblog) me into an Instagram picture or Tweet me and show me how it turned out!
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13 April 2015

A FEW FAVOURITES!

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Morning guys! It feels so incredibly great to be back with my regular Monday YouTube video! I have missed it but so desperately needed to take a few weeks away from the channel whilst the wedding was coming up, it was all so manic. But, I am back! 

Today I am chatting about a few of my favourite products that have been with me constantly and that I can't do without at the moment. I have kind of stopped doing the traditional 'monthly favourites' video as I really don't have enough new things to do this every month. What can I say, I am a creature of habit! So, from now on I think I will just put up favourites when I feel I have enough newer things that I absolutely adore.

If you want to see links to all the products I mention just click through to the video on YouTube itself and go to the information box that sits below the video.

Enjoy!

PS: Please comment below and let me know what some of your favourite things have been recently - not just beauty, anything at all!

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12 April 2015

OUR CORNISH WEDDING VLOG #1

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You may know this already (!) but last week Joe and I tied the knot!

If you didn't already know, we chose to elope to a beautiful venue called Boho Cornwall (I am going to be doing a separate post on eloping soon as I don't go in to the 'ins and outs' of it in this video). We wanted to vlog more on this trip but didn't end up filming as much as we thought, as we just wanted to switch off and enjoy our day, but we did film a few bits and bobs of our journey to Cornwall and a little apartment tour at our venue too.

We had such a fantastic day and can't thank our lovely hosts enough for their kindness and getting the balance right between helping us and putting us at ease and just leaving us be...it was perfect.

I hope you enjoy this little video, it is nothing grand or overly detailed, just us, together, getting ready for our day really!

Coming up next week will be one other vlog of the rest of our 'mini-moon'! Stay tuned for that (subscribe to my YouTube channel to be the first to see it) :-)

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10 April 2015

FIVE THINGS I AM GRATEFUL FOR THIS WEEK #14

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^^We had a fantastic day out at The Eden Project on Wednesday^^

What an amazing week this week has been! This week off has been long over-due and I cannot tell you how much it has been appreciated. Cornwall has been perfect; the sun has shone (can you believe it?!) and my skin has been collecting vitamin D in large amounts as we wandered about along little coastal paths and dipped toes in the sea. There have been days this week where I have felt like a child from an Enid Blyton book. As a child I remember reading about these lucky kids who got to scramble about in the school holidays, having adventures and eating treats... this week, it certainly came true!

Have you guys had any sunshine where you are this week? What has been the highlight for you? Let me know in the comments, let's chat!

Let me try and narrow the things I am grateful for down to just five things for you...

1. Hearing the rhythmical sound of the waves in the middle of the night (and nothing else). Let me tell you how amazing it is not to be able to hear a road and to have a pitch black room to sleep in; I could get used to it. Also, the bed in our apartment this week has been one of the most comfortable bed I have ever slept in. In-fact, we have been so at home here that we have been discussing whether or not we can claim squatters rights...thoughts?!?

2. Eating delicious food with amazing friends. Picture this: home cooked ham that falls apart with one touch of your fork, new potatoes in butter and home-made chocolate brownies with ice cream...heaven. Thank you so much to all you guys (you know who you are!) we had an amazing day.

3. Having a stunning coastal path (mostly) to ourselves. On Tuesday we got up early to walk the coastal path that runs between Sennen Cove and Lands End. The sun was shining and there was just enough cool breeze to keep us moving. We only saw a small handful of people, so got to take in the view on our own most of the way. This walk is one I have done many times but it never ceases to knock me off my feet. Looking out at sea and seeing the stunning Cornish landscape at its finest is beyond inspiring.

4. Star-gazing with my feet in a hot tub. Joe and I visited A and L on Wednesday night for a yummy dinner followed by trouser rolling and leg soaking in their little hot tub. It was chilly outside so we layered up and all had a mug of tea to cling on to, but it was such a lovely moment. You all know I'm a huge space geek, so this was practically a party for me!

5. Enjoying a beast of a Marks and Spencers lunch after a mammoth morning of walking up steep hills. We stopped by M and S in Hayle and picked up fresh salad, a wrap to share and the tastiest fresh bread ever! (I may have also picked up a packet of Percy Pig and friends - wow!).

There have been so many little things that I have enjoyed this week and I have been making the most of treats whilst I can (as I will be back on the super-healthy wagon on Sunday!). Thank you to the mint-choc ice cream, enjoyed over looking a beautiful beach, the fresh scones and cream we found in a gift pack in our apartment last Saturday, the chocolate we got from The Eden Project's gift shop which tasted like heaven and the gorgeous meal we had in The Boat Shed with A and L on Sunday. Treats like this week are so very rare, but very appreciated... although now, I must admit I am ready to go back to training and eating healthy again. Thank you Cornwall, you have made our honeymoon amazing! 
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9 April 2015

WE GOT MARRIED!

I am officially a wife, can you believe it? I can't! It just doesn't feel real yet.

At about 12.30pm on Wednesday 1st April, Joe and I were signing the register that declares that we belong to each other as husband and wife. The ceremony was beautiful and totally perfect. I will write a post soon about a few of the details, such as what happened to build up to the big day as well as what to consider when eloping but, for now, I thought a bit of a photo-diary was called for, with just a few notes underneath. 

We chose to get married at a fantastic venue called 'Boho Cornwall', who specialise in elopements. The owners of the fabulous property (an Arts and Crafts house, with two apartments attached) Tom and Maya, were simply amazing and made everything so laid back and easy and our photographer, Adam Gibbard, was patient, funny and made us feel a lot more at-ease than we ever anticipated!

I hope you enjoy!

PS: If you follow my Facebook page, you would have already seen some of these pictures (if you don't follow me on FB you can click here and take the plunge... I put a whole bunch of random things on there sometimes!)

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8 April 2015

CLEARING THE MENTAL MISTS

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^^Beautiful Marazion beach in Cornwall^^

What is it about getting away from the treadmill of everyday life that means you suddenly have several life epiphanies at once? 

It has been just over a year since Joe and I have been physically away on a holiday (verses just staying at home where it is hard to switch off) and I can honestly say that the distance between our normal routine, and the pure fabulous-ness of Cornwall, has provided me with gigantic slap around the face with slimy seaweed! I don't think I had any concept of how worn down, tired and stressed I had become, but it became evident almost as soon as we arrived in my favourite part of the world.

After our wedding I pretty much slept constantly, having five hour 'naps' in the middle of the day, but, boy, were they needed. I felt like my body was starting to shut down, like it knew that work was on the shelf for a few weeks, so I decided to take a bit of a blogging break and not vlog as much as I had intended also (although there will be a couple of highlight videos coming up once we get back to fast internet again!).

I feel like our wedding and the time off that I am having marks a fresh start for me right now. I am already feeling more inspired again and I still have plenty more days off. I purposefully signed myself up for an amazing group of coaching sessions for when I get home to give me a kick up the backside with my blog and a couple of other ideas I have sitting in my head. I mentioned it in my 'Taking Stock' post last week, but the sessions are led by the amazing Gemma Sands, you can find her business site here or read her blog here. I have signed up for the 'Free to Flourish Inner Circle' which could not have come along at a better time for me, check out the linked title for more if you are interested. (Just to say, I have paid my own money for this, it is not a sponsored mention - Gemma rocks, that is all!).

Joe and I have also done a lot of talking about our five year plan. Ultimately, we want to move ourselves closer to the sea, ideally Cornwall, which has always been the dream. From the minute I very first arrived in this amazing place, many years ago, I knew it was home. It felt right. It felt like I had been here before, that is why I want to live here so desperately. Every time we come here it highlights, for me anyway, how fast-paced life can get, and the worse thing is we don't even notice it happening!

I guess what I am saying is that sometimes we need to take a giant step back and realise what is important. Recently, I have been asking myself questions like 'Do I get enough time with the people I love?', 'Do I take enough 'down' time for myself where I actually stop, put down the gadgets and just breathe?' and 'Am I doing everything that I can to make me/us totally happy at this present moment?'...let me tell you, the answer is 'no'.

This is not a negative post, totally the opposite. I feel refreshed, happy and ready to take on new things and make scary leaps of faith, it really is a great feeling but the hardest bit is actually doing things to make changes. Wish me luck!
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6 April 2015

GUEST POST WITH LAYDEY KATABELLA | THE BODY SHOP 'INSTABLUR' REVIEW

Happy Easter Monday lovely peeps! As you have probably gathered (unless you have been hiding under a rock of late) I am away right now, having got married last Wednesday (check out my Facebook page to be brought smack-bang up to date). I am now a full blown married woman :-)

Because I haven't got a beauty video going up this morning I thought today would be the perfect day to put up a lovely guest post by an even lovelier blogger friend of mine, Kat,who is the pretty face behind the lifestyle, craft and beauty blog 'Laydey Katabella'. Kat kindly offered to step in and look after you guys whilst I was away and today is talking about a product that I love a little too much!

Why not follow Kat on Twitter, Pinterest and on her fab YouTube Channel also! So, it's over to Kat...

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Well hello everyone, Kat here from Laydey Katabella! I’m filling in for Lucy whilst she is off being a beautiful blushing bride. We've been blogging pals about a year and when she asked me to guest post I was super chuffed!

It seemed only fitting that I talk about The Body Shop Instablur today, as Lucy is the reason I bought it! She gave it such a high recommendation in a haul video that I couldn't resist. (She’s such an enabler this one ;-) ) 

Now, the Instablur states some pretty big claims:
-12 hr shine control
- Reduces appearance of pores
- Blemish hiding
- Complex unifying
- Make-up extending

After testing it out on every make-up occasion since I bought it I can confirm it genuinely does all of the above. I really cannot praise this primer enough.

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12 hour shine control
I’ve inherited oily skin (thanks Mum and Dad) but the Instablur does an excellent job of mattifying the skin. It controls my shiny complexion really well but doesn’t eradicate it 100%, however in a 12 hour period I only have to powder once which is seriously good going!

Reduces appearance of pores
Like most people I have some open pores which try their best to say “hey” throughout the day, but Instablur reduces them dramatically, making make-up glide beautifully over the top of them.

Blemish hiding
It also helps to hide those pesky blemishes. Raised bumps appear reduced and the surface smooth, aiding in their camouflage under foundation and concealer. It’s also great for dry skins as the gel-like formula will blend smoothly over the top for an even finish.

Complex Unifying
Your complexion will look much more even when using this primer which I've found has led me to need less base, giving a beautiful natural look. Any fine lines will appear reduced and smooth too!

Make-up extending
This is probably my favourite claim because lets be honest, that’s what you want from a primer! With the oily mug and general life happening i.e. eating and the lark, I am forever finding my base sliding off my face but this primer keeps it all where it should be and is by far the best reason to buy this product.

At £14 I’d say it’s pretty damn reasonable and I’ll even say it’s as good as Clarins Beauty Flash Balm. Yup, I went there! So if you want a primer that’s value for money, keeping your make-up in place and makes your skin feel amazing- this is the one.

Thank you Lucy for having me guest post on your blog- it’s been a pleasure and I hope you have an amazing wedding day! 

That’s all from me lovelies, I hope you enjoyed!
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3 April 2015

FIVE THINGS I AM GRATEFUL FOR THIS WEEK #13

Prepare yourself for a wedding heavy post (sorry if this is annoying but how can I not write about it?!). With work finishing on Friday last week Joe and I packed our bags for our wedding day and set off for Cornwall on Tuesday morning. I can list way more than five things I am grateful for this week, but let's save some things for future blog posts!

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^^ The view from our apartment at the wedding venue was pretty special^^

This week I am grateful for...

1. Receiving the sweetest gifts ever from my husband to be on the night before our wedding. Joe had put together a lovely book of memories for me and gave me, not one, but two pairs of beautiful earrings by my favourite Cornish artist, Kurt Jackson. But the gift to top all gifts was a card containing instructions to log on to an email address that I had never heard of. When I opened the email account it was full of amazing notes, memories and pictures written by Joe, for me to read on our wedding day. I may have cried...a lot!

2. The gale that was blowing outside our window all but disappearing on our big day. The terrible weather just cleared in time and we even saw some sunshine. As we arrived back to the apartment from the photo-shoot outdoors the weather closed in again, but it was like it put everything on pause, just for us.

3. Amazing hospitality from our hosts at Boho Cornwall, Tom and Maya, and a fab few hours with a really talented photographer, Adam Gibbard (I will share some of our pictures when we have them). I honestly had zero nerves when we arrived and even the day itself felt so relaxed. Tom, Maya and Adam just had everything under control so all we had to do was be there and enjoy the moments. Again, I will be sharing more in-depth wedding day stories, so watch this space if you are interested in that!

4. A beautiful bouquet of flowers from The Cornish Cutting Garden. We collected it on our way through to St Just and I was over the moon with it. I had no idea what I was going to get, but honestly, the end result was perfect. Clare, who runs the company, greeted us in the little studio where she grows all the flowers and creatively puts them all together, and she was incredibly lovely. The view from there...wow, there are no words. 

5. I'm saving this one until last as they are mainly responsible for getting us here this week. A huge thank you to my mum and dad for all their help with the logistics of the wedding. I know they would have loved to have been here with us but we are forever grateful for their support and big help with getting it all booked and put together, love you lots (xx).

Random other things that have made this week amazing: beyond fabulous, hand-made chocolate truffles in our apartment at Boho Cornwall, hands down the most melt-in-the-mouth treats ever / The White Company toiletries in St Michaels Bed and Breakfast - the scent of that stuff is perfection in a bottle. Actually, whilst I mention the B and B... the breakfasts, oh.my...heaven on a plate / All the lovely comments and 'congratulations' messages from you guys, friends and colleagues...you have no idea what that meant to us both / Watching the sunset from our special spot on Marazion beach right where Joe asked me to marry him...beautiful moments like that are what make life worth living.

I hope you have all had a lovely week. I will be putting up a vlog really soon so keep your eyes peeled on my YouTube Channel!

xoxo
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2 April 2015

TAKING STOCK | MARCH 2015

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{Image sourced from Pinterest}

As you read this I am on my mini-moon (we are saving for a proper honeymoon at a later date!). Stay tuned to my blog for wedding updates (there will probably be some on my Facebook Page already). For now, let's sum up the wonderful month of March!

Making | lists upon list of things not to forget for our wedding day.
Cooking | lasagne for mum and dad (and buying a yummy lemon cheese-cake).
Drinking | lots of water to keep my skin as clear as possible that date.
Reading | no where near enough. This month has been the busiest ever and a result of that is that I still haven't finished Girl Boss. (*slaps self on wrist).
Wanting | all the shades of this amazing Max Factor blush...if you haven't tried it yet then you most definitely should!
Looking | for spring clothes before realising I actually can't spend any more money until way after we are married!
Playing | way too many hours of stupid games on my phone to turn my brain off in the evening.
Deciding | to sign up for an awesome 'Free to Flourish' community experience led by Gemma Sands of the fab blog Little Tiny Pieces. If you are looking to grow your blog or business and want to learn how to approach it from a different, more creative perspective you should jump across to Gemma's site, she's awesome!
Wishing | my stupid hair would hold a curl. Lame I know, but for my wedding I want loose curls and have honestly tried everything! Maybe a cement mixer is my best bet...
Enjoying | my last days as a 'singleton'. That sounds like I have been out every night behaving like a wild child doesn't it. You know what I mean!
Waiting | for my three weeks off! (they will already be here by the time you read this).
Liking | watching Gizmo playing in her new cat tunnel like a nutcase.
Wondering | what I have done to deserve such amazing friends. Everyone has been incredibly kind hearted and generous on the lead up to our wedding and I couldn't be more grateful.
Loving | wearing bright lips again!
Hoping | I get to spend more time at home soon.
Marvelling | over the eclipse. Some people just were not impressed but, being a space geek means that I am impressed by anything remotely...er, spacey ;-)
Needing | new pillows for our bed. Bloody things. We got an amazing voucher from my lovely work colleagues as a wedding pressie, which will buy us some more, among other things. Thanks you guys!
Smelling | mint shower gel.
Wearing | very over-sized jumpers and skinny jeans. A lot.
Following | my lovely friend Helena's wedding plans via the medium of text message updates!
Noticing | that spring smell is in the air.
Knowing | I will be a 'Mrs' very soon.
Thinking | about mini-eggs way too much!
Feeling | guilty about not giving my blog much time recently. It is wedding and work related stresses and strains I promise...in the words of Arnie 'I'll be back'!
Opening | an indulgent gift from my bestie... my skin will be forever grateful!
Giggling | at Hen night related 'things'.

I hope you all had a fantastic March. I am away until mid April but will be posting vlogs and posts where I can. If you want to see what we are up to in Cornwall then head on over to Instagram or Facebook!
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