Monday, 30 November 2015

Salad... All Year Round?

Florette, salad

To me, Salad means Summer. It means healthy eating. It's a side of healthiness to accompany an otherwise hearty meal.

But it doesn't have to be. 
A Salad can be enjoyed as a nutritious, hearty but healthy meal every single day of the year (...except Christmas of course!!

Florette Salad have joined forces with Harry Eastwood's cookery book 'A Salad for all Seasons' to show how Salad can be eaten all year round.

salad, food, salad all year round

Harry's book is split into seasonal sections; exciting, vibrant recipes for Spring & Summer, and hearty, nourishing options for Autumn & Winter.

It's great for when you don't have much time to cook, a Salad is the perfect fast food, just throw in the leftovers from the fridge and you have a fresh, delicious, healthy meal in just a few minutes!!

The book is super easy to follow, with gorgeous pictures, calorie info and easy swaps and tips!

So, it's Winter. 
Let's make a stilton, pear and walnut salad.
Harry describes it as a 'leftovers salad' so it's perfect for after Christmas when you're sick of the sight of turkey and you've eaten your body weight in pudding and chocolates!!

In the book she titles it as a Stilton and Apple Salad, with a tip of swapping for pears, which I've done.


salad, food, cookery book

It took me just minutes to make, just toss some dark mixed leaves into a dressing of honey, olive oil and salt & pepper then crumble some stilton cheese before adding walnuts and slices or cubes of pear. Simple.

It was actually really yummy. I was worried it wouldn't be very filling but it was a really quick and easy lunch that was really delicious. The cheese and pear made it really tasty.

The crunchiness of the walnuts, combined with the sharpness of the cheese and sweetness of the pear make the recipe really exciting compared with the usual boring Salads I'm used to. I could definitely get used to eating more Salads throughout the year.

florette salad, salad all year round

salad

salad


What do you think? 
Do you eat Salad's all year round? 
What are your favourite recipes?


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Wednesday, 25 November 2015

Getting Personal this Christmas with Zazzle

Personalised christmas cards, zazzle, christmas

Year after year, I spend ages in card shops trying to choose Christmas Cards; searching for all the personal cards for family, choosing pretty boxed cards. A pretty card makes all the difference, I think! ;)

Zazzle are an online shop offering indie and branded designs, plus the chance for customers to custom design their own products. 
They pride themselves on letting you add a personal touch to anything from clothing and cards, to fabric and wall art, to the highest quality.

Personalised christmas cards, zazzle, christmas

I became a huge Zazzle fan after designing my own Halloween Goodies back in October. 

This Christmas, you can make your Christmas greetings a little more personal by creating personalised cards with their 'create your own' or 'photo card template' options, or simply choose from their own quirky little designs.

Personalised christmas cards, zazzle, christmas

My family that don't see the boys that often are always asking for photos, so I love sending them little cards with pictures for them to keep. 
These flat cards are a great idea for slipping inside Christmas cards or sending alone for a personal touch or a special announcement. There are pages of different templates to choose from that allow you to add an image to send a family photo with your Christmas wishes. My grandparents especially will love cutting the photo off after Christmas and popping in a frame!

Personalised christmas cards, zazzle, christmas
Personalised christmas cards, zazzle, christmas
[These cards were £1.45 each]

Of course, as well as flat cards, they have folded cards. Choose from cute, funny, stylish, rustic and traditional or use the templates to design your own.

I added a family shot to this stylish card and personalised with our names.

Personalised christmas cards, zazzle, christmas

Personalised christmas cards, zazzle, christmas

[These cards were £2.35 each]

I also added our names to this simple text card.

Personalised christmas cards, zazzle, christmas

[These cards were £1.95 each]

Finally, I chose this simple but cute card [not everyone wants a picture of you on their mantlepiece ;)] with some lovely artwork. You have the option to completely customise it by changing the text, adding and moving around the images. But I left it be.

Personalised christmas cards, zazzle, christmas

[These cards were £2.03 each]

All the cards are made with high quality, semi gloss card with a smooth texture inside. You have the option to choose the size, paper type, printing type and any extra's you'd like such as different coloured envelopes etc. Zazzle have thought of it all!

As well as cards, you can dress up your envelopes with these festive address labels. I chose some wrap around labels with our address on. These will be great for sending to family and friends to let them know of our new address.

Personalised christmas cards, zazzle, christmasPersonalised christmas cards, zazzle, christmas

[These labels were £7.80 for a sheet of 24]

For an extra cute way to seal your envelopes, they also offer over 100,000 different Christmas stickers, in different shapes with lots of different images, patterns and texts, you can again personalise with your name, address or however you wish.
I decided to design my own sticker, with an image I created on picmonkey.com, with our names underneath. The text is a little small so it's hard to read, but these will look super cute on the back of my envelopes and mean I don't have to keep licking and sticking!! :)

Personalised christmas cards, zazzle, christmas
Personalised christmas cards, zazzle, christmas

[These stickers were £3.70 for a sheet of 20]

To see what other fantastic Christmas gifts you can customise, visit Zazzle.co.uk 

Don't miss out on their Black Friday & Cyber Monday deals this week!!


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*I created/designed/chose all the above products 
which were then sent to me for free for the purpose of this post.  
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Sunday, 22 November 2015

Nail Stamping - My First Attempt

nail stamping, nail art, nail polish, nails


I love painting my nails. They're never going to look as good as if I get them done professionally, but I really don't like the aftercare and the state of my nails after having them done, plus I can't afford to get them done regularly, so I try to stick to doing my own nails.

NailPolish.co.uk are a brand new website offering a wide range of luxury brands, products and collections, with speedy delivery.

nail stamping, nail art, nail polish, nails

They recently teamed with MoYou London to send me a fantastic little box of goodies for me to try.
Let me show you what I received...

nail art, nail polish, nails
nail art, nail polish, nails
nail stamping, nail art, nail polish, nails
nail stamping, nail art, nail polish, nails
nail stamping, nail art, nail polish, nails

I chose 3 seasonal nail polish shades from OPI: Get In The Expresso Lane, a rich dark coffee brown, First Date at the Golden Gate, a classic red, and Muir Muir on the Wall, a seasonal plum.

I also received an Elegant Touch Nail Apothecary Base Coat, a selection of nail art tools and a Stamping Set from MoYou London including a tropical collection stamping plate, scraper, rectangle stamp and quickly little instruction booklet with easy to follow directions on how to stamp.

I've never tried Nail Stamping before. I always see people with cute nail art and think, 'I'll NEVER manage that!' I'm not the most creative when it comes to my nails. But I'm intrigued to give it a go.

I prepped my nails, used the base coat and chose the OPI Get In The Expresso Lane (which looks a lot darker here in the pictures than on the nails), then set out the stamping set. It was a little tricky trying to find a pattern that didn't look too summery, but using a white polish from my collection I had a little play around and this is what I came up with...

nail stamping, nail art, nail polish, nails

It was super easy to do. Simply paint over the design on the plate with your chosen polish, scrape over with the scraper then press the stamper on to the plate before gently rolling it over your nail. Then a sweep of top coat. Ta-dah!

It's a great way of jazzing up your nails and really easy to do.
They aren't perfect, but for my first attempt I think they're quite cute. :)

nail stamping, nail art, nail polish, nails

What do you think?
How do you jazz up your nails?


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*Items sent to me for the purpose of the post. 
All words are my own
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Wednesday, 18 November 2015

DIY Beauty with #MiraMessMakers

DIY beauty


My friends often tell me they can't afford to pamper themselves. But pampering doesn't have to cost!
The clever, crafty people over at Midas Touch Crafts have teamed up with Mira Showers to launch a fun beauty campaign showing you can make your own DIY beauty products at home, with ingredients you'll find in your cupboards and water from the tap



I made a Chocolate Lip Scrub & Body Moisturiser. They smelt amazing, worked really well and bets of all, I had lots of fun creating them.

Treat yourself to a bit of ME time, or invite the girls round and have some fun!


Chocolate Lip Scrub

What you need:
Brown Sugar
Cocoa Powder
Honey
Coconut Oil


Coconut Oil is a beauty must-have. There's not a lot coconut oil isn't good for, so it's a perfect ingredient to add to your DIY Beauty concoctions. It's semi-solid at room temperature so makes a great lip balm. Adding a little honey to lock in moisture and keep the lips soft and supple, along with brown sugar to exfoliate and of course a small amount of cocoa powder to colour and flavour. Viola. You have your very own chocolate lip scrub. It smells good enough to eat too! My 11 year old loved it!


Chocolate Body Moisturiser

What you need:
Coconut oil 
Cocoa Powder 
Cornflour
Water


Warm the coconut oil slightly to melt and mix with a little cocoa powder and water. Adding a little cornflour will thicken the mixture to the perfect creamy texture. The cocoa powder means you'll smell of chocolatey goodness all day long, plus when you apply, it'll give you a little colour, although the doesn't last so unfortunately it won't replace your expensive fake tan, I'm afraid! ;) I applied this to my arms and it felt lovely!! The coconut oil left my skin gorgeously smooth and soft, I smelt sickeningly sweet and couldn't stop sniffing myself for the rest of the day! :)


Tip: Swap the cocoa powder for lemon juice for brighter skin!


Do you make your own beauty products at home? 
I'd love to hear your DIY creations!!

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*I was given a voucher to purchase the ingredients for the purpose of this post




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Saturday, 14 November 2015

Get a Good Nights Sleep with a Mulberry Silk-Filled Pillow : Review


mulberry silk filled pillow, silk bedding direct, review


It's so important to get a good nights sleep so you're refreshed for the busy day ahead. It's the little things that make the big difference, like a good comfy pillow!


When I was contacted about receiving a Mulberry Silk-Filled Pillow, I was interested to see [...or rather to 'feel'] how it would differ to a regular pillow.

The Mulberry Silk-Filled Pillow (£155.00*) from SilkBedding Direct are filled with nothing but luxurious 100% natural and hypoallergenic long-strand mulberry silk. The pillow casing itself is a deluxe 300 thread count fine cotton sateen, which is soft to the touch, durable and long lasting.

mulberry silk filled pillow, silk bedding direct, review


It arrived in a fab little carry case and when I took it out I could immediately feel it was definitely good quality. 
The pillow is medium firmness which is perfect for me. I always seem to find pillows that are much too soft or too firm.

It's quite heavy and I can feel the silk inside.

I've now been sleeping on the pillow for a couple of weeks and I can honestly say, I LOVE IT!
It's so comfortable and bouncy and I've slept beautifully on it!
It doesn't fall out of shape unlike many other pillows can and looks and feels so soft.

mulberry silk filled pillow, silk bedding direct, review


Each pillow contains up to a kilometre of long-strand mulberry silk, used in their natural state directly from their silk cocoons.
The 100% natural and untreated silk is rich in amino acids and protein sericin - great for the hair and skin, which is a great benefit. So I really am getting my beauty sleep! ;)

Apparently bed bugs and the likes cannot live in Mulberry Silk, so you can rest assured that your pillow is clean as well as hypoallergenic. 

mulberry silk filled pillow, silk bedding direct, review


I'd love to be able to let you feel just how luxurious and soft the pillow is to touch, it's honestly the nicest pillow I've ever slept on and it's most definitely staying on MY side!! :)

If you'd like to try one for yourself, treat yourself using a 5% discount, by entering SLEEPWELL at the checkout.

As well as pillows, SilkBedding Direct also do duvets and mattress toppers, promising you won't be disappointed! I think if I had the duvet and topper too, I'd never want to get out of bed!! ;)


mulberry silk filled pillow, silk bedding direct, review


What do you look for in a good pillow?

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*Product sent to me for honest review
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Wednesday, 11 November 2015

Ladies Night with the Leicester Bloggers

Last Friday, I met up with a few local bloggers 'for dinner', or so we thought!!
Arranged by the lovely Laura/Extreme Housewife, we were told to meet outside The Cosy Club at 6.30pm. I got there a little earlier but luckily Hollie/Hollie Rose Blog, who I'd had the pleasure of meeting before, was there too. We were soon joined by a lovely lady called Sammy who introduced herself as our photographer for the evening! I think our faces said it all!! 

Sammy was from ZigZag Photography, a local photography studio based off Clarendon Road. I was slightly gutted I hadn't made more of an effort for the photos, haha. But glad there was someone with a camera on hand, as I didn't want to lug my Canon1200 around.

Before long the rest of the ladies had arrived; Kirstie/Kimamely Beauty, Charlotte/Discovering Charlotte, Radhika/Radhika Recommends & Steph/Priceless Life of Mine, and Laura revealed the secret. We weren't just having dinner, we were about to experience a few little treats courtesy of Highcross Street's finest!!

First of all, a pop up tutorial in gorgeous boutique salon, Danique Hairdressing. We were greeted by salon owner, Keri and her lovely staff. Spoilt with a glass of Peach Bellini, we were sat down while Keri explained we were about to have a masterclass in the latest seasons 'Fashion Fixes' by Label.M. 



Keri, who recently won Label.M's Product Expert 2015, explained that these styles were super easy to do at home. But for those that aren't so great with hair, like me, they offer a service in salon where they can transform your locks into these beautiful styles for just £25.00.



Keri transformed model Georgia's hair into a cute nouveau knot in just a few minutes before Hollie stepped up have her hair glammed up  for the evening. 


I have to mention just how lovely Keri was. She was so down to earth and friendly and made us feel so welcome! It was the end of a busy Friday, yet she was still so happy for us to be there, she was full of advice and that for me, made me want to go back!

Before we left, we were gifted some fantastic goody bags which included lots of information on the haircare brands they're proud to work with, along with some travel size versions of Label.M's dry shampoo and hairspray, which I can't wait to try, and best of all a voucher for a complimentary cut and finish. I'm super excited to go and be pampered! 



Next up, dinner at the Cosy Club
We had a lovely waiter looking after us this evening, he poured us all a glass of Prosecco courtesy of the Cosy Club, which was really nice of them. We were all presented with a gorgeous, hand-made goody bag, crafted by Laura herself! It was really lovely of her to put these together as well as organise everything! Inside were some fab goodies from local businesses, Zig Zag Photography (including a photo shoot voucher, how exciting!!), Avon treats from Hollie and contemporary interiors store, Blue Sun Tree





We all tucked into our yummy meals (after taking a few snaps of course!) while chatting away. It's always a bit nerve-wracking meeting new people, but the ladies were lovely!

[credit]

After we paid up, Laura revealed our final surprise of the evening, to finish off our night nicely with a yummy cocktail or hard milkshake at Meatcure. I'd heard great things about Meatcure, and I'm pretty desperate to try their dirty burgers, they look ah-maaazing!! With their quirky interior, Meatcure prides itself on creating the best burgers, the old-fashioned way. We sat ourselves down and quickly decided on our drinks. I went with The Dirty White, which is an alcoholic milkshake made up of vanilla, Oreo's and Amaretto. YUM!! It was a beauty, I can assure you! I'm definitely going to take the other half for a cheeky visit when we get the chance!!



It was a fantastic night, Laura did an amazing job and we all had a great time! Can't wait to see them all again soon! 

 
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