Wednesday, 23 April 2014

CND Vinylux Nail Polish

Wednesday Beauty Buys

Weekly Top Coat

I have been itching to try out some of these shellac style polishes that promise a longer lasting finish without the expense or the use of a lamp.

These Vinylux polishes by CND seemed a good place to start.

CND vinylux Pink Bikini, Rubble and Weekly Top Coat

I ordered two colours - Pink Bikini and Rubble and the Weekly Top Coat.

My favourite nail polish brands are Essie, Orly and Jessica , but even with a good topcoat I only get a couple of days out of a manicure with these brands. It would be great to be able to extend this to 4 or 5 days. I tried the bloggers favourite top coat Seche Vite, but I found my nails chipped sooner with this. I think it is the quick dry variety that somehow causes a shorter wear time. The best top coat I have ever had had is the Orly Top 2 Bottom product.

These Vinylux polishes are easy to apply. The brush is a good size and carries an adequate amount of polish. You do need two coats as the first can look patchy, although this may be poor technique on my part! You then apply the weekly top coat. This gives a shiny, gel look to the finish that lasts.

The verdict

I didn't get a whole weeks wear out of my nails, BUT  I got a lot longer than usual nail polish!!

This stuff is very hardwearing and well worth the hype.

I am very hard on my nails . I am a cleaning junkie and an early years teacher - need I say more. If it lasts 4 -6 days on me then I am sure it will last even longer on a standard person! I also plan to try the topcoat out over normal polish - just in case it extends the wear!!

I got my polishes at Nail Polish Direct for £8.95 a polish and free delivery. They arrived well packed and quickly. I shall be back for more colours soon. 

Have you tried these polishes - how long did they last for you?

Monday, 21 April 2014

Organisation in a busy household

Trying to share out the jobs!

As you have probably seen from previous posts I am a bit of a list writer and a schedule maker. I find it helps me keep some level of sanity in our extremely busy life as a family of five.

As I embarked on a full time job at the beginning of the year I was fairly naive in thinking that mentioning to my family that I would be needing help with the cooking, shopping, cleaning and washing would be enough to  spur them into action. 

I couldn't have been more wrong.

The assumption is that woman can cope with whatever life throws at her .

In other words for the first 6 weeks of my full time job I could measure the amount of help I was given in single figures.

OH did put a load of washing on ( once)  and warm up a meal ( I think he was dirty and hungry). 

The kids revelled in their new found freedom not to complete homework and let their bedrooms descend into unrecognisable hovels.

I have learnt my lesson.

Easter has been spent not only resting, but creating a few schedules and rotas to ensure everyone does their bit. We have a cleaner coming to help out and the rest of the chores are being shared out. 

I shall have help.

Or they shan't eat.

I know just how the Little Red Hen felt now.

Some of my favourite advice and printables come from the blog I heart organizing , but be careful, you can lose a couple of hours at a time in her blog!

Friday, 18 April 2014

Unplanned break.

I have been absent from the blog for a while as life just became a little too much! Every time I came back to write I couldn't face it and for me this is optional, something I do because I enjoy it. So I took a break and spent it with my family.

Work continues to be all consuming, but I am loving it. I have to be careful that I don't let other things slip in my passion for what I do. Full time is a bit brutal, but we have some help set up for this term so things should be a little easier.This great trolley has become my trusty steed for walking to work at 7.30 every morning.

I treated myself at the end of term to a new bag - LK bennett in clay. Love the coral tag. I think I worked for this!

LK Bennett bag 

The work on the house continues. We have now removed the old kitchen and are in the process of converting this into an office for hubby - carpet is going in soon. We can then reclaim our lounge. Photos soon!

The aim is to get everything done by the end of the summer. It will be a real novelty living in a completed house.

I continue with the revamp of my children's room. My oldest boys room is just about done. We have decided to move a wall in between the other two children's bedrooms as they are very unequally sized at the moment! That will be another month of dust and debris - I am getting used to this!

I am enjoying ordering items to dress the rooms we have finished - at the moment I am trying to decide on a budget sofa that looks great for our kitchen. Despite my hubby's reservations I am thinking of grey so I can change up the accessories according to the season.

We had a lovely weeks break in Cornwall last week. The sun shone. We surfed and walked, slept and ate. Lovely family time.

Polzeath cliff tops

My dad is still hanging in there, but this final journey is oh so hard. He does not recognise us anymore. He  cannot walk or talk and is losing his swallow. He had his birthday this week which was bittersweet. We all sat with him, but I am not sure he knew why. It is the most painful and drawn out way to end your life. He is so brave.

I wish you all a very happy Easter with those you love. Enjoy the sun and the chocolate!


Saturday, 8 March 2014

Cleaning up my act

Clean Cleaning Products!

Over the past year I have been trying to clean up our lifestyle somewhat. It started with a few beauty products , mainly for the kids, where I began to avoid unnecessary additives and preservatives. This then became a full on change to the way we ate with a "clean" diet ( see this post). Some of these rules have slipped whilst I have concentrated on my return to full time teaching, but I am reigning things back in again.

My middle son has also been diagnosed with a plethora of allergies so it makes sense to look also to what I am spraying into our environment . I just don't want to be adding to his sniffles.

I like a clean house, I admit it.

 It messes with my sense of order and calm if my house is not clean and in order. I just can't focus and feel out of control. I am not talking immaculate here, but general clean and tidy - as best as can be with 3 kids anyway! So I looked into changing over to environmentally friendly products wherever I could. This included washing powders as well. 

I stumbled across this brand on another blog and was really impressed with the results of the polish so took the plunge and ordered a whole range from The Big Green Smile. Most of these products are from Method, although the fabric softener is Attitude , as is the window cleaner. I felt that they were all very good value for money and good size bottles of product too. You don't need much to get the results needed and the smell is lovely - not at all artificial, just fresh, clean and natural. I am on to a winner here. I also got a load of coloured micro fibre cloths to colour code my cleaning too. 

Obsessed Moi?! 

Maybe just a smidge.

Cleaning Caddy

Daily Cleaners

This pink grapefruit multi surface cleaner is fabulous. Not only does it clean up any grease, it smells divine.

The bathroom cleaner gives a shiny finish and also a pleasant, just laundered scent to the room - I will be using a lot of this one.

This is a beautiful scent again - leaves the kitchen spotless and with a lingering smell of having been just clean for hours.

 Daily granite cleaner - there is a bit of a knack to this, but it does give a sheen back to granite that is smeared or dull. I use it once a day. ( Apologies for the photo)

This was the one that started it all off. I know when I spray this onto my wood I am putting something good into it! It smells great - not like artificial polishes do . It gives a moist shine and keeps working too.

This is the window cleaner spray - I use it on mirrors too. Great - no smears as far as I can tell!

Again a great product - I have gone through a bottle of this already. I can see a bulk order coming up!

The thing that I really like is that I know I am not pouring anything nasty down drains and into our environment. These products are effective and smell glorious. Definitely worth a look. They retail from £3.00 depending on the product. I got mine from The Big Green Smile. They have a wide range of products for sale on this site.

*I brought these products myself. I was not sent these to review. I am a cleaning junkie!

Monday, 3 March 2014

A few gifts

of the Laura Mercier and White Company kind.

There have been two occasions where my OH has arrived home with a gift for me over recent weeks. I haven't quite decided whether it is because he knows things have been tough or he likes spending the money I am now earning.

Either way I won't say no to gifts of the following calibre.

Laura Mercier ambre vanille souffle body creme - Oh this is good, so good!

Two white company goose down large, square pillows in soft grey . Perfect on the bed and for propping myself up whilst having a lie in over half term ( and in the sale I believe!) 

....and no my bedding wasn't ironed!

I could get used to this.