Tuesday, 28 May 2013

Some Crabtree & Evelyn Goodies

C&E is a brand I've kind of been familiar with for a little while, I've been given bits and bobs from there over the years and I've used the products in hotels (Hilton hotels, to be specific), but I'd never went out of my way to go and shop there myself.
My future mother-in-law is the new assistant manager in our local branch, so Craig and I have been a bit nosey and had a pop in to see what kind of things they sell. I always just kind of thought they were just a standard bodycare shop but it turns out that they sell so much more than just lotions and potions for your body!

First of all, let's talk about the jam. I've never tasted jam as good as this, I'm slightly obsessed with it! They don't have any nasty ingredients in them and perfect at satisfying my sweet tooth at the moment. I think we've got nearly every flavour in our flat, we haven't tried all of them yet but my favourites so far have been the good old raspberry and strawberry. I don't feel they cost much more than what you'd pay at the supermarket but you can definitely taste the difference in quality.
Scented drawer liners - who doesn't love them! These are so pretty in my drawers and the scent is strong but not overpowering. I can't comment on the longevity of them yet but they've been in for a week and the scent hasn't started to fade yet. I think these are about £6 for four generously-sized sheets.

I have this Pomegranate candle in our bedroom and it is absolutely beautiful. It is on the pricey side (about £25 I believe) but I've said before that I really don't mind paying for quality and candles are one of those things I will pay more money for. What I've noticed about these candles is that they last so much longer because the wax all burns down together. It doesn't do that annoying thing that most other candles do, which is just burning down the middle and leaving all the wax on the sides. I always feel like that's such a waste! I've been using this and several of the mini candles for a good month or so now and they're still going strong, so although it seems expensive on the outset, I definitely feel like I'm getting my moneys worth out of them, and that makes me a happy customer :)

Friday, 24 May 2013

Blog Everyday in May Tag: Top 3 Worst Traits

#24: your top 3 worst traits
My worst trait is definitely not knowing (or knowing, but not caring) when to keep my mouth shut when someone has rattled my cage. My mouth used to run away with me quite a lot more when I was younger, I'd like to think that I'm a lot better at biting my tongue now and able to let the little things go. I get it from my dad, he literally has no filter!

I'm a littleee bit bossy (my nickname when I was little was bossy boots). I'm a perfectionist and like things done a certain way. I don't know how Craig copes to be honest. I do most of the housework not because he won't do it, but because it's not up to my sky-high standards! He'll do something and I'll just do it again the 'right' way. It used to bug me when my mam did that when I was younger but now I've just morphed into exactly the same thing!

Finally, I'm a very straight-to-the-point kind of person which can lead to people thinking I'm a bit harsh when they just want to talk. I really don't mean to be and I can be sympathetic, but a pat on the back isn't going to solve the problem. I like to be more pro-active and find solutions rather than talk something through then not doing anything about it. This is also a quality I get from my mother!

Thursday, 23 May 2013


Phew it has been a crazy week! A lot is happening, mainly baby-wise. He's basically going to be here anytime now, I'm guessing three weeks. My poor bean still isn't even 5lb yet so it's basically crunch time and it's been all hands on deck. It's very likely he'll have to come out within the next two or three weeks so I had to have steroid injections in my bum which can I just point out now is not fun! It stings like a mo-fo for like 10 minutes after whilst all the solution spreads! They are to help his lungs mature because although as of the end of next week he wouldn't be considered a premature baby anymore, his development is 2 weeks behind 'schedule' so they need to make sure that they're strong enough for when he comes out. Anyway, we've spent this week packing the hospital bags, finishing the nursery, preparing for the baby shower and if I'm honest, generally freaking out! I keep wondering what or who he's going to look like? I definitely think he's going to be a mini Craig, if only because at every scan he's been 'showing off' if you get my drift, I'm pretty sure his dad was one of those kids that ran around naked all the time haha.

Anyway, the BEDIMT! I'm missing Monday out because what we're struggling with right now is too depressing and personal to get into right now and Tuesdays because I don't think I've been posting long enough to have any favourites. So I'll jump to Wednesday:

#22: rant about something
I could rant about SO MANY things right now haha! But I'll try to stick to the stuff that annoys me in general rather than what annoys me right now as that is pretty much everything:

  1. People riding their bikes in the middle of the lane especially on the dual carriageways. I've seen many a near-miss, they annoy me especially if there's a perfectly good path they can go on
  2. People on the road in general actually, and people who have blatantly seen you coming and still walk out slowly like tomorrow would do
  3. When people write on FB that there's no need for name calling online, that it's so nasty etc... then you scroll down and they've been calling people names? I don't get it?
  4. People who complain about things that they could change but never do anything about it
  5. It seems people irritate me a lot..? Oh dear :s this could be the hormones talking right now, I'm sure I never used to get so irritated by these things so easily!
 #23: things you've learned that school won't teach you
Basically everything. I don't believe you learn anything until you start making your own way through life on your own terms and learn through experience. I think when you're young (school-age) you think you have everything figured out but the truth is that not everything works out according to plan. My plans didn't pan out the way I always dreamt they would, but sometimes there's a better path that you'd never considered.

People will try to trample on you to either get ahead (career-wise) or just because they're not very nice people in general, in my experience though that's usually because something bad has happened to them. It took me a long time to realise that! Happy people make other people happy. Instead of getting upset if someone says some not very nice things about you, dig for answers - there's always something that's happened to them that's made them the way they are. It's rarely that personal, unless you know them and have genuinely done something to hurt them, it's just the way they are. Don't sweat. I know that's a hard concept to grasp when you're in school but as you go through life you will start to notice some of the same qualities in people!

You get out of life what you put into it. Don't let anybody (teachers or otherwise) tell you that you can't do something - you can do anything if you work for it!

Sunday, 19 May 2013

Blog Everyday in May Tag: Childhood & Favourite Blogs

#18: tell a story from your childhood
There's one memory that really makes me laugh and that was during the school holidays when me and my brother were young, and we started a water fight with my dad outside. It started off with little water guns and eventually esculated into throwing massive buckets of water over each other - the kitchen was practically underwater by the time we were done with it!

#19: your favourite blogs and what you love about them
 Love My Dress Wedding Blog - I literally could spend hours looking through all the wedding photos!
The blogs on about.com are always very useful, literally every topic under the sun is covered on that website
Skinny Taste is where I get a lot of recipe inspiration from

Friday, 17 May 2013

Blog Everyday in May Tag: Favourite Photo

#17: a favourite photo of yourself and why
I'm on the right

Let me explain: I was pretending to be running along the beach Baywatch-style here!

I like this photo because it kind of sums up my personality: I don't take myself too seriously and I'm a tad bit goofy. I know when people who don't know me see photos of me and assume I'm actually being serious when I'm posing a particular way in a photo, when actually I'm usually taking the mick and I'm exaggerating it for a laugh on camera! The slo-mo Baywatch run before the Baywatch-theme pub crawl was funny at the time anyway!

Thursday, 16 May 2013

Blog Everyday in May Tag: Lot in Life

#16: something difficult about your 'lot in life' and how you're working to overcome it
I'm not too sure how to approach this one as the biggest thing that we have to deal with as a family at the moment is not something I want to get into too much detail about right now. Other than that, there isn't really anything I can think of. My family life has always been good, bad things have happened but difficult periods happen to everybody at some point. I'm one of those people who tries not to worry about small things as things can always be so much worse. My grandma used to always say "there's always someone worse off than you!" and I guess that is true! So, I don't think I have much to contribute to this topic today as I can't really complain about anything that nobody else has had to deal with at some point in their lives!

Wednesday, 15 May 2013

Blog Everyday in May Tag: A Day in the Life

This is a typical day at the moment whilst I wait for Flynn's arrival into the world. I think I've made it sound kinda boring, but I intend to make the most of the down time that I have now!

My day usually starts at around 5:45 - 6am. Craig starts work down the road at 6:30 and I get up with him most mornings unless I'm really tired! The first thing I always do is put the kettle on and make tea to wake us both up a bit.

When he's at work, I usually spend the morning cleaning the flat and doing whatever errands need done. He comes back from work at midday and we'll have some food, then we'll either relax in the house, go out and do bits and bobs that need doing, or go out together or seperately with our own friends. Now I'm coming to the end of the pregnancy I'm also napping in the afternoon again as the fatigue has crept back in.

After 6 is when we usually settle down and watch a lot of crap TV or have movie nights with popcorn, have a bath and in bed by 10pm!


Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Blog Everyday in May Tag: Happiness

#14: list 10 things that make you happy
 I'm quite impressed that I've kept this up as long as I have! I'm doing good!

1. Baths and long showers
2. A cup of tea in the morning
3. Waking up to sunshine

4. Funny pictures my dad manages to take of Benjamin
5. Nap time
6. Feeling baby kick and wriggle inside me
7. The satisfaction that you get after cleaning the house
8. My mam's cooking
9. Fresh sheets on the bed
10. Chocolate :)

Monday, 13 May 2013

Blog Everyday in May Challenge: Apology

#13: issue a public apology
Well this one is easy. There is definitely one person I do owe an apology to, and that is my human punchbag (not in the literal sense!), otherwise known as my fiance!

 We both knew hormones came with the territory if and when I got pregnant but I don't think either of us realised just how bad they would be! You didn't even have to really do anything to annoy me, you just did. And then there were the tears, mood swings, the demands (waking you up to do McFlurry runs at 1am.. but you never complained about them, I wonder why!), making you rub my back in the middle of the night when I got sick, randomly deciding I was better off doing it alone, making you promise never to leave so I didn't have to do it alone, and being an absolute nightmare in general. You always managed to calm me down and remind me that soon we'll have a baby, I'll feel much better once he's here and it'll all be worth it. I don't know how you've managed to stay so patient, and even talk about baby #2 and go through all of this all over again! I think you deserve some sort of medal!

Sunday, 12 May 2013

Blog Everyday in May Tag: What Do You Miss?

#12: what do you miss? (a person, a thing, a place, a time of your life)
Me and my friend Alex used to work together at River Island. She was technically my boss when we did the delivery shifts three nights a week but we hit it off and became bestest buds pretty much straight away. We would work together during every shift and we had four hours to gossip and talk about anything and everything, and when we finished at 10pm on a Monday night we would always go out in town as well as it was always a busy student night. One of the delivery drivers used to bring us sweets too! I don't miss the actual job but we did have such a laugh together, and that's the part of the job that I miss!

Saturday, 11 May 2013

Blog Everyday in May Tag: Sell Yourself

#11: sell yourself in 10 words or less
This is really hard, but here's what popped into my head:

  1. Creative
  2. Perfectionist
  3. Enthusiastic
  4. Active
  5. Loyal
  6. Happy (most of the time!)
  7. Organised
  8. Positive
  9. Reliable
  10. Expressive

Friday, 10 May 2013

Bump Blog #4: It's Almost Time!

Wow, there is a lot to catch up on baby-wise, so I'll get right to it..

The hormones have reached new levels. For a start, I cried when I realised we had no apple juice left this morning. I also have a thing about being alone right now. Part of it is that I'm scared that Craig won't be with me when labour starts, but other than that I'm out of ideas!
Baby is developing two weeks behind, so he's on the small side, which was predicted anyway. I have to go back to hospital in just under two weeks to see if he's been growing somemore. If he's not, I'm not sure what's going to happen. They're not overly concerned right now but it's definitely something that needs to be monitored very closely. However he has moved into a good position for birth and apparently it looks like he has a full head of hair!

I got to meet the other midwife who is going to help deliver the baby who is really nice and also got to speak to the anaesthetist who was also lovely so I feel a bit better knowing that everybody who will be there at the time are going to be nice! I did have an operation on the bottom of my back to get rid of the main tumour that I had, so he had a look at it and I can definitely have the epidural as it goes further up, however he can't 100% guarantee that it will spread properly as he doesn't know if there's nerve damage underneath where the tumour was removed. I'm not too worried and he didn't sound it either, he said it should be fine. I asked what it feels like and apparently it's like a bit like a bee sting. Well, I've never been stung so I don't really know what to do with that haha. I hate needles and not particularly looking forward to it but if it'll take the pain away then bring it on!

I'm pretty conflicted at the moment because I am nervous about the big day, but at the same time I can't wait for it all to be over so I can finally meet him!

Blog Everyday in May Tag: Moment in my Day & Embarrassing Moment

a moment in your day
bath time

most embarrassing moment
I fell over on stage once, not just a trip, a full on falling flat on your face moment that made me die a little inside. Thankfully there were only four people judging and they claim they never even seen it as I was behind some other people, so that made me feel slightly better, but still - cringe! What's funny is that I find that kind of stuff absolutely hilarious and if I see something like that I'm usually in fits of laughter, not so amusing when it happens to you though, haha!

Wednesday, 8 May 2013

Blog Everyday in May Tag: Piece of Advice

#8: a piece of advice you have for others. Anything at all
 I wanted to give some practical advice, and seeing as I've just finished university and I'm feeling all reflective, my advice is based on what I've learned whilst being a student and what I would recommend any other students do, based on my experience.

So I know I haven't had the 'typical' student experience. When I was younger and moved to London I lived in a massive shared house, but it was completely different to what it would be like living in halls and student houses as I was sharing with a mixture of mature students and working people. One of my good friends lived in halls though and through observation I did learn a fair few things.. (some are kind of common sense, but I'll mention them anyway!)

1. Clean up after yourself: I would say this is probably the number one reason for conflict, so try to at least keep the communal areas clean after you've used them. Your own room can be in any state you want it to be, but you should chip in with cleaning the rooms that everyone uses.

2. Do not date your housemate: I know sometimes this could work out, but in most cases it's probably not the best idea. Could you really watch him date other people if you split up? It would be very hard to avoid seeing. I wouldn't recommend arranging to live in a student house with a new boyfriend either for the same reason, and also when you're a student and don't have a lot of money, moving out might not be an option should things take a turn for the worse.

This sounds really obvious but the reason you came to university was to get a degree. And to get that degree you kinda need to go to your lessons and lectures! You could probably pass without hardly ever setting foot in the place but what's the point in paying all that money to do a half-hearted job? Getting to know your lecturers is very beneficial, you want to feel like you can ask them questions if you get stuck or to be able to talk to them about personal issues which may affect your studies. When I first got pregnant and was very ill, my teachers were so helpful and gave me any work that I missed if I had to stay at home that day. That wouldn't have happened if I didn't make the effort to come in whenever I could and establish some sort of rapport with them.
Start your assignments as soon as you know about them. I really don't work well under pressure so I lived by this rule, and it is definitely the least stressful approach! This way you only have to do a little bit each day, instead of frantically pulling all-nighters at the library. Know where you work best at, for some it's at home (like me), and for others it's the library. Don't work somewhere where you know you're going to be easily distracted.

Lastly, student loans is not free money! I know when you're 18 and you suddenly have 3 grand in the bank it's quite hard not to get excited, it's probably the most money you've ever seen in your life up until that point. But do remember that this money has to last you around three months and pay for boring things like rent, bills, etc. I worked out that you get your loan approx. every 15 weeks, so I just divided the amount that I got by 15 and that was my weekly budget on top of whatever wages I was also bringing in. If you find that you're struggling with the amount you've been given, find a job. You should have a careers service at university that will help.

Try not to get into your overdraft, once you're in an overdraft you'll find that it's very hard to get back out, especially if you've been given £2,000! Try to think of it as your emergency fund rather than spare cash to go out with (hard I know). If you succumb to temptation pretty easily, get the lowest overdraft on offer so you have enough to cover emergencies but don't have hundreds or thousands of pounds sitting there tempting you to spend!

University is definitely going to be one of the best times of your life and it should (and will) be fun, but you've got to have your sensible hat on and think ahead a little! Hope these tips helped someone!

My Thoughts on: Essie Nail Polish in 'Action'

(Can you guess which toe I may have broken when dancing? haha)
I am aware that when people review nail polishes they usually show their hands, but today, I give you my foot! This is because this is not a colour I would wear on my fingers, I'm very much a neutral polish kinda girl and tend to save bright colours for my tootsies.

So this shade is called Action and my first impression upon getting the bottle was that it was going to be a light orange. I didn't anticipate just how bright it is! I don't actually have any neon nailpolishes, so it's a nice change for me especially with summer hopefully finally around the corner. I found the consistency a bit watery but it was easy to apply and dried quickly, so I didn't have to wait too long to apply another coating.

A few days in, the staying power has impressed me and there is not a chip in sight which makes me happy. Essie nail polishes are widely available online and on the high street and usually retail for about £7.99 a bottle. This brand has a huuuge colour selection available and I'm already thinking about which colour I should try next. Any suggestions??

Tuesday, 7 May 2013

Blog Everyday in May Tag: Biggest Fear

I did do a tag not long ago describing all of my (mostly irrational) fears, so I won't go into them again!
So I've decided to do a little post on what is scaring me right now..

Childbirth - just the general ickiness of it. Craig's already bagsied his spot firmly at the waist-UP. It's gonna be interesting!

Also, failing university. I have no actual solid evidence that I should fail, but my mind has a way of convincing itself that I'm not going to pass, even though I've done everything that's been asked of me and worked really hard. Yet in my mind, I've still definitely failed...

What if a wasp flies in the house when I'm alone? (Random)
Somehow choking on my own blood whilst I battle my horrendous nosebleeds that I seem to be getting everyday

As you can see, I have such big problems in my life...

Monday, 6 May 2013

Blog Everyday in May Challenge: Friend Love & What Do I Do?

Instead of picking one friend, I thought I would share my favourite pictures of me with some of the people in my life, they're all equally lovely!

(Summer Break 2011)
(Gemma's hen weekend)
(Me and my very bestest friend at our engagement party - taken hours before we found out I had a bun in the oven)
(Old picture of me and Alex)
I haven't managed to include everybody, these were just the pictures I had to hand, I thought the pictures would be nicer than trying to write a huuuge essay about how much I love my friends!

Today's topic is, if you couldn't reply with your job, how would you answer the question, 'what do you do'?

If you've been following my bump blog you'll know this already, but as a quick recap: we had discussed kids, but as I was unsure about the state of my fertility due to past health problems, Craig suggested starting to try sooner rather than later. That way we would have had plenty of time to get fertility treatments if it turned out I couldn't get pregnant. I got pregnant pretty much straight away, and I still can't believe how easy and quickly it happened for us, especially after all that's happened. All I can say is I'm extremely lucky and I've been very fortunate!

Being a stay-at-home mam is something that was mutually agreed. In the last year, whilst everyone else has been applying for graduate jobs, I've been preparing for a baby. I haven't had an easy pregnancy so I stopped working around Christmas time and I've only just finished university in the last few weeks. Obviously it's not realistic going back to working life now I'm about to pop!

At the moment, my days consist of preparing for baby, who is due in the next few weeks (aaaahhh) and looking after the house the best I can. Unfortunately I've developed a condition called SPD, which is common in pregnant women, and just means that my pelvis has 'relaxed' and has weakened as it prepares for birth, so I can't stand or walk for much longer than 10 minutes now. So, if I'm being honest, I don't do a lot right now because I can't! The pain is just going to get worse as the last few weeks go on so I'm being very careful trying to rest, but it's kinda boring! I'm not enjoying the current situation as I'm relying on Craig more and more to do a lot of things for me - which he doesn't mind doing - but it's all going to be over soon, and it will be worth it!

Saturday, 4 May 2013

Blog Everyday in May Challenge: Favourite Quote

#4: favourite quote (from a person, book, etc) and why you love it
I'm going to be honest, I've found this one a little bit difficult! I'm not sure if it's because my big fat pregnant self preferred to alternate between napping and 'nesting' in the flat today, or because it genuinely is hard to pick just one original quote, but in any case, I wasn't too inspired. So I hopped to the one place where you're kind of guaranteed to find something inspiring - Pinterest - and I found this little gem:

Anyone who knows me will have an idea why I've picked this, I'm all about keeping your eyes forward so to speak and moving on if that's what needs to be done (most of the time, anyway). I'm not a big believer in dwelling on the past and wishing things had turned out different (not that I do actually wish things had turned out differently for me, I think I'm pretty darn lucky with how my life has turned out so far). That's not to say that I haven't gone through some pretty glum times and wondered if I'd made the right decisions or if I could have done something differently, but you can't change anything, so there's no point going over it in your head again and again. If you keep looking back, you can't move forward, and anything or anyone that's behind you and not in your life anymore are probably there for a very good reason! I'm not sure if I believe in fate but I do believe that everything happens for a reason, and you just kind of have to trust that there's something bigger and better just waiting for you in the future!

Friday, 3 May 2013

Blog Everyday in May Challenge: Things That Make You Uncomfortable


First of all, what a positive response to my last post! Thank you for all the comments. Maybe I should start doing more fitness related posts in the future?

#3: things that make you uncomfortable
1. Spiders that disappear as soon as your head's turned
2. When other couples argue in front of you. Awkward!
3. That silence when you share a lift with strangers
4. The TV volume being on an odd number
5. Using a public toilet straight after somebody else. All I can think of is GERMS haha!

Thursday, 2 May 2013

Blog Everyday in May Challenge: Top Five Health & Fitness Tips

#2: educate us on something you know a lot about or are good at
Without a doubt what people come to me for advice about more than anything else is fitness and how to flatten their stomach/tone their tush/etc. I'd be here all day though if I were to write everything I know, so I've decided to give my top five easy tips for incorporating health and fitness into your life:


1. When going up stairs, take two at a time for a tighter bum and thighs.
2. Walk as many journeys as possible.
3. Incorporate fruit or veg into every meal. Personally I add fruit to my breakfast, a salad with whatever I'm having for lunch and veg with my dinner.
4. Do squats or lunges whilst watching TV.
5. Keep well hydrated; thirst is very often mistook for hunger. Have a drink first then see how you feel after half an hour.

Wednesday, 1 May 2013

Blog Everyday in May Challenge: 250 Words

I thought this would be a pretty fun challenge to do, if you would like to take part too, hop over to Story of my Life

#1: the story of your life in 250 words or less
I was born and raised in Sunderland living with my parents, younger brother and countless pets over the years! Growing up I was always very active, dancing from the age of three and eventually going to dance college and moving to London after school. After an injury I was recommended to go to pilates, and my instructor was a teacher at a college in Newcastle for fitness instructing. This sounded like fun so I got my qualifications and went on to university to get a degree in exercise development too. Over the years I've bounced between dancing, fitness instructing and beauty consulting jobs which were all flexible, fun and pretty well paid ways of working. I dated and had boyfriends but was never that bothered about getting married and having kids (possibly due to the fact there was a chance that chemotherapy killed my chances of ever having any). I loved my work and going out all the time and travelling. It's always the way, but when I met Craig I really wasn't looking for anything serious. In fact I was seeing somebody else at the time. It got to the point where I had to choose who I was going to be with and once lucky Craig finally managed to get me all to himself (ha!), everything changed, we got engaged very quickly and moved in and got pregnant within a year of getting together. Now I'm looking forward to having our little boy in the next few weeks, getting married and eventually getting back to work and making the £££'s!