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Christmas Gifts

December 30, 2011
Xmas
♥ Kenwood kMix Almond Hand Mixer ♥ Marc Jacobs Daisy Eau So Fresh Refillable Purse Spray ♥ Small Dogs Can Save Your Life - Bel Mooney ♥ Glamour Magazine Subscription ♥ Swarovski Angelic Pierced Earrings ♥ 2012 Cath Kidston Diary ♥ Doo-Wops & Hooligans - Bruno Mars ♥ Bridesmaids DVD ♥ Urban Outfitters Jewellery Stand ♥ Salter Aquatronic Electronic Scales

Here are some of the lovely presents I received for Christmas this year. I love seeing what other people have got for Christmas and don't usually do 'present posts' but I thought I would share a few this year. I've been given some Christmas money which I'm mostly going to be saving but Chris and I did spend some on a Kenwood Food Processor and a Cookware Juicer- loving kitchen stuff at the moment! What was your favourite present this year?

Remington Pearl Hair Curling Wand

December 29, 2011
Earlier this year I was asked to help judge the category for 'Best New Beauty Appliance' for the UK Beauty Awards (see the winners here) and the Remington Pearl Hair Curling Wand was one of the beauty tools I was asked to judge.

Before using this I used my Babyliss Porcelain Conical Wand to curl/wave my hair which I still really rate, but seems to have been pushed aside in favour of the Remington option.

I absolutely adore this curling wand (and just conical wands in general really). It's so easy to use and only takes me 5 minutes. My hair also stays wavy all day long which is fab. I have tried the more traditional curling tongs in the past and any curls just dropped out in minutes- however after using the conical wands my hair stays all day long. I usually spray with hairspray but I've forgotten to do this numerous times and it doesn't make much difference to the curl longevity.

Whenever I use this to curl my hair I always get comments on it- last week a colleague asked me to send her a link to it and she said three people in her team were going to be buying it. I should be getting commission!

I curled my hair this morning so thought I'd share some pictures of it just after using the wand. I usually just curl the very ends.

Cue pose-y picture (which I haven't done in a long time!)...

During the day the curls drop into a really lovely look. The only photo I have to show this was taken at our work Christmas party so excuse the Elf outfit!

I really recommend getting a curling wand and I love the Remington Pearl Wand. It's currently only £20.49 from Boots.

Liz Earle New Botanical Shine Treatment

December 27, 2011
I hope everyone had a fantastic Christmas and Boxing Day! Today I've got an exciting new product from Liz Earle to share. As you probably know, I'm a huge fan of the Liz Earle Botanical Shine hair range and they are a staple in my bathroom so it was with great excitement that I read about the new hair treatment they are launching- their Botanical Shine treatment for frizzy, coarse or very dry hair.

The Liz Earle team have worked closely with their in-house botanist and technical team to create the Botanical Treatment especially for customers who suffer with this hair type. Botanical ingredients have been carefully selected to target each area of concern and to ensure hair is left healthy-looking and ultra-shiny.

The treatment is used after shampooing your hair (obviously with the recommended Botanical Shine Shampoo) and you can either leave for 10 minutes or 30 minutes before rinsing (30 minutes for an extra boost).

I am taking this back to my parents house this Christmas to give it a whirl- my Mum complains about her frizzy hair so she'll be able to help me review it. If the product is as good as the other Liz Earle hair goodies then I'm sure it won't disappoint.

The Liz Earle Botanical Shine Treatment is being officially launched on the 3rd January and you can sign up online to receive more information about it.

Merry Christmas!

December 25, 2011

Christmas Countdown - My Christmas Day

December 24, 2011
Happy Christmas Eve everyone! I can't believe how quickly December has gone. When I was little the lead up to Christmas went so so slowly and I'd be rushing it away. Now I'm older life just seems to be whizzing by. I love hearing about how people spent their Christmas as children. Christmas is still brilliant but it was so magical back then. On Christmas Eve my brother, sister and I would be jumping around the house, listening to Christmas songs and jumping on the beds (much to my Dad's dismay- the dust, the dust!). As we were so excited for Christmas Day we would get ready for bed super early and if we were lucky we'd get a little Christmas Eve present before bed. We would get some sherry, a cookie and a carrot together for Santa and his reindeer and put them in the hall (the next morning there would be crumbs left, and half a carrot on the plate).

The real fun would begin when we tried to get to sleep. It was impossible. My sister would be out like a light but my brother and I would just be so excited that it would take us hours. It is only now that I appreciate how it was even worse for our parents who were so exhausted and had to wait for us to fall asleep so they could fulfil their Santa duties. Morning would finally arrive and we'd wake up at about 5am. We had to wait until 7 to wake up our parents but they came up with the ingenious idea of putting a present (always a book) on the end of our beds that we could open and read until 7 finally arrived. At 7 we'd drag our sacks full of presents into their room and open them on their bed.

After sack presents we'd have a nice breakfast that was never appreciated when we were little as we just wanted to OPEN MORE PRESENTS. We'd then have our presents from under the tree and Mum and Dad would open theirs. The long wait between breakfast and Christmas dinner would be filled with playing with our new toys, watching Top of the Pops Christmas Special and eating lots of chocolate. I love how all rules go out of the window at Christmas- anything goes! After Christmas dinner we would play lots of fun Christmas board games and then watch some of our new videos whilst Mum and Dad napped. We'd then have a light tea of crackers, cheese and probably more chocolate. Sometimes Mum would bring out a sneaky present for each of us that she'd held back- it was always a great end to the day.

Writing this post has made me feel so Christmassy and also want to be little again so I can go back to the old Christmas days! This year we'll be spending the day with my Nana. My Mum will probably wake us up (if you'd told me that when I was 8, I would have been shocked) and we'll open our presents in the living room. The traditions generally stay the same- chocolate throughout the day, the big Christmas dinner- although it'll be us joining in the afternoon napping! We still play games like the Wii, Cranium and Articulate and have crackers and cheese for tea. You never lose the Christmas traditions!

Christmas Countdown - Lovely Advent Calendars

December 23, 2011


Christmas Countdown - Christmas interiors

December 22, 2011



Christmas Countdown - Most Memorable Present

December 21, 2011
As much as I love getting presents now, the most magical were the ones I received when I was younger. Some of my favourites have been a ballet tutu, a huge basket full of stationery (yes, I was a stationery geek and still am) and a cabbage patch doll.

My most memorable present however, has to be the present I received when I was 11 or 12.


A little hamster! I had been out with my parents a few days before and they'd been looking at hamsters for my sister Jess. I was looking at them and really really wanting one but for some reason I didn't ask for it- I think I thought it was too late for extra Christmas presents. On Christmas morning we opened all of our presents from 'Father Christmas' and then went downstairs for presents from Mum and Dad. In the living room there were two rotastak cages with hamsters inside for Jess and I! We were so ridiculously excited but had to tone down our squeals so not to terrify the hamsters.

So that was when Minty and Fudgie were brought into our lives. My hamster Minty lived for 3 years and had a fantastic Rotastak cage. It was such a pain to clean out so most thanks go to my parents for helping with this not-so-fun part of having a pet!

I would love to know your most memorable Christmas presents! Do share.

Recent buys

December 20, 2011
I went back to my parents a week or so ago for the weekend. On the Saturday we went to Gunwharf Quays in Portsmouth to do a little shopping so thought I'd share the few items that I purchased.
Cath Kidston glasses case (£8) and keyring (£2.50)

To compliment my Cath Kidston pen case and wallet!

MAC Florabundance Lipglass (£8.75)

I was so happy to find this in the CCO at Gunwharf. I bought it ages ago and it was my favourite lipgloss ever- but it disappeared into one of my bags and I never saw it again. A common theme with all lipglosses that I own!

Just Go With It & Eclipse- 2 for £10 at HMV!

Christmas Countdown - Favourite Games

Our family play a lot of games and at Christmas time, even more games. We bought a Wii last Christmas and spent most of our time playing Mario Cart, Sports Resort and Just Dance 2.

I wanted to share our three favourite board games to play. Would love to know yours as am always on the lookout for more fun games to play!



Christmas Countdown - Christmas Trees!

December 19, 2011

My 2011 Beauty Winners

December 18, 2011
Last year I posted about my 2010 Beauty Winners and thought it was a great reflection of my favourite beauty buys over the year. So here are my best beauty products for 2011...

Skincare

Make-up Remover
Bioderma Créaline H2O cleanser (review)

Cleanser
Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser (review)
*Same as 2010


Moisturiser
Embroylisse Lait-Crème Concentré

Make-up

Foundation
L'Oreal True Match Foundation

Concealer
Collection 2000 Lasting Perfection Concealer

Powder
MAC MSF Natural
*same as 2010

Blush
MAC Well Dressed

Eyeshadow
MAC Patina
*same as 2010

Mascara
MUFE Smoky Lash (review)

Eyeliner
L'Oreal Superliner

Lipstick
Boots 17 Mirror Shine Lipstick- Beehive

Lipbalm
By Terry Baume De Rose (review)
*same as 2010

Haircare

Shampoo
PRO:VOKE Touch of Silver Shine Shampoo Weekly Treatment

Conditioner
Liz Earle Botanical Shine Conditioner (review)

Styling Tool
Remington Pearl Wand

Christmas Countdown - Present I always asked for


Mr Frosty was actually mentioned on the radio last week. According to a survey this was the present that most children asked for for Christmas but never received. I completely agree with this as I puta Mr Frosty on my Christmas list every year but it never ever arrived on Christmas Day. My Mum hated the thoughts of the colourings in it but it just looked like THE BEST THING EVER to me.

Christmas Countdown - Present Ideas

December 17, 2011
There are so many lovely Christmas presents that you can buy in the shops and online. It can be overwhelming. Magazines and blogs are handily filled with gift guides for every person you can think of and websites make it easy for you to filter to price ranges and type of gift.

I love choosing gifts for people but my favourite presents to buy/create are the personalised photo gifts on sites such as Snapfish and PhotoBox. I have done these sorts of presents for all occasions- a photobook for my Grandad's 80th, a mug for my Dad's 50th, a calendar for my Mum, even a jigsaw for a Christmas present. I've just seen that PhotoBox now does photo iPhone covers which is another great stocking filler.

If you want a special present that family members would love I really recommend having a look!


Both images taken from Snapfish

Innocent - Shake the Tree

December 16, 2011

Innocent have recently relaunched their very cute little festive game called 'Shake the Tree' which I wanted to share as everyone likes some festive fun. It's a very simple game to play, I wouldn't even call it a game really, but everyone wins a prize so its definitely worth giving it your attention.

All you have to do is 'like' the Innocent facebook page here and you will be granted access to the Innocent Tree which has been sprinkled with festive magic. You then click/shake the tree and an array of colourful presents will fall from the leaves- just pick the one that you would like to open and you will be told what you've won. Everyone will win a prize! Gifts range from a new iPod Touch, Kindles, Christmas hampers, free carafes of innocent OJ and lots more. I have just played and won £1 off a carafe of their OJ- I imagine this will make up the majority of the prizes but please let me know if you play and win anything else!


Christmas Countdown - Favourite Films

My list is exactly the same as my 2009 post about my favourite Xmas films- mostly because they haven't changed! I've trying to think of some new Christmas films to add to the list but am drawing a blank so am sticking to the old faithfuls.

Elf

I did a post recently devoted to the amazing film that is Elf. Watching this never fails to get me in the mood for Christmas- even if I'm watching it in June! One of my workmates is the biggest Elf fan I've ever met- she watched it 6 times in one week. Super Elf! For our Christmas party this year it was only appropriate that our team dress as Elves.

Home Alone


I cannot count how many times I've watched this film- it's just great. My cousins even had a Home Alone game and we used to always play it when I was younger- I also had a massive crush on Kevin which is slightly embarrassing. The "Rockin' around the Christmas Tree" song always reminds me of Home Alone.

Love Actually


I first watched this film in the cinema when I was 16. It was the last day of college before Christmas and so many college friends went- it was so festive and fun. I just love this film- London looks beautiful in every scene and I like all of the different stories. I've heard some say that it doesn't focus enough on one story but I like the variation. It's funny, sad, happy and heart-warming with a great soundtrack. Living in London now just makes me appreciate this even more.

Miracle on 34th Street


I love Richard Attenborough- he is the perfect person to play Father Christmas. I used to adore watching this film when I was younger because it made me believe even more strongly that Father Christmas was real! (I still secretly like to believe this)

The Nightmare Before Christmas


This is probably a less traditional Christmas film but it's just as brilliant. It's worth watching for the songs alone and Jack and Sally are one of my all time favourite "movie couples". I do end up chanting "this is Halloween, this is Halloween..." for days after though!

What are your favourite Christmas films?