Saturday, 30 June 2012

Little Girl's Room.

Finished at Last!

Ok , so here it is, the finished room. No great masterpiece, but definitely a big improvement !



 The bed and matching chest of drawers is new from MyPod Beds , although, as is usual for me I managed to hunt around and get both in the sale. I repainted her changing unit in a soft grey and white, which looks so pretty and blends in well with the rest of the furniture. The walls are Farrow and Ball Palma Grey and Middleton Pink - both of these paints I had already so it cost me nothing new. I re did the white dado rail and skirting as it looked very yellow next to the white shelves - again I used Farrow and Ball All White eggshell.

I printed off a few new prints ( chosen with the help of my little big girl) and put them in some white frames from Tesco . They have a really good selection of different frames you can pick from. I was ruthless with excess furniture and toys - giving things away to friends or to charity. Of course it was her birthday this week as well so she had a few new toys to put into her lovely new room too!

MyPod MidSleeper Bed Unit with Pull Out Desk.
I stuck a couple of black and white spotted waterproof mats onto the pull out desk to protect the surface. I got these from Tesco again for just over £1.00. They look fun and do the job. The top drawer is full of her 'office' bits and pieces! The Rosebud Duvet Cover , looks very Cath Kidston with a heart cushion and matching heart fleece throw - all again from Tesco and not at all expensive so easily changed when needed!

Peter Rabbit - her first cuddly toy.

Rosebud Duvet Cover and Heart Cushion

Pretty bunting and cupcake clock from Jo Jo maman Bebe

Still got plenty of girly bits and pieces.
The main light came from Laura Ashley a few years ago in their sale and is gorgeous. A good light fitting always makes a room look more finished I think.

Laura Ashley pink gingham curtains and rug.

White frames from Tescos
In one of these frames is the saying from Winnie the Pooh- "Remember, you are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem and smarter than you think". The boys chose this saying for her - classic! She loves it!

A place for hanging girly handbags!

Wedding hedgehogs from our wedding.

Plenty of storage

Revamped Changing Unit

I do still have a canopy and some fairy lights to add at some point and a chair to pick up for her desk, but I think we could call it done. I am pleased with it - it is quite a small room as you can see, so to get the amount of storage in we needed , to have a full size bed and still get it to look pretty is a bonus. She was thrilled - a great birthday present for her, particularly as she came down with chicken pox on her birthday this week - what a rotten present! I am now fired up to tackle the rest of the diy jobs that are waiting for me....... 

Wednesday, 27 June 2012

Wednesday Beauty Buys

Estee Lauder Double Wear ( Stay in Place) Shadow Creme

I was chatting to a friend, who is also a mum of 3 and we were saying how hard it is sometimes to find those moments for yourself, especially when getting ready in the morning! The school run can be such a testing time and yet it is worth carving out a few minutes to put on some make up and do your hair. I find it makes all the difference to me to leave the house presentable - not for anyone else! With this in mind I had been looking for some eye shadow that would last longer during the day and not crease during the warmer months ( if they ever really arrive) and was tempted by a pot of this Estee Lauder Double Wear Shadow Creme in Ivory Lace . 

Estee Lauder Double Wear Eye Shadows

It gives a lovely pale shimmer effect which you can use on your brows, or add a touch to cheekbones to reflect a bit of light . I found it to be the best eye shadow I have had for staying in place and still looking like it should after a day on the run! I was so pleased with it I have since gone back and purchased two other colours: 
Mochachino - a lovely coffee coloured matt shadow and Golden Sands - a shimmer shadow in a soft gold colour - my favourite of the three. 

Golden Sands, Ivory Lace, Mochachino

You can see by the pictures I use them regularily . They were my holiday make up bag staple this year! I tend to mix two at a time to give variety and use the Ivory lace to highlight. I also use the Double wear eye pencil, which is equally as effective and does not leave me with panda eyes by the end of the day - result! I know they are a little on the pricey side, but if you buy from a department store such as Boots or Debenhams there is usually some deal on where you end up with a load of free samples or goodies - and we all love those to try out! 

Even after a whole day painting my daughters bedroom - the eye shadow was untouched. Photos of the finished bedroom coming - just putting the final touches to the room tomorrow - it's looking good! x

Monday, 25 June 2012

Music Monday - What's playing on your ipod this week?

 Monday 25th June

On my ipod this week is David Gray - " Sail Away"

Friday, 22 June 2012

Look Fantastic goodies - worth having a go!

Visit our LF google+ page and +1 us before 9am 25th June for your chance to win!

Little Girl's Room.

Baby girl grows up

I am at my best working to a deadline and this is a tight one! We get back from holiday this weekend , I am taking my youngest son to Wimbledon on Monday and my little girl's new, "big girl's bed" arrives on Wednesday. So that gives me a day to repaint her room and rearrange it into a more grown up space. Oh, and I forgot to say Tuesday is her 5th birthday. However, I do have everything I need - paint, filler, accessories, a new toy box that I made etc so it is going to be an extra birthday present for her - albeit it a day late. I am not changing the colours - Farrow and Ball pinks and blues, but giving them a freshen up. I have a selection of white frames to put some girly prints into as well. If the room is ready they will be able to assemble the bed for me, so with that as an incentive I shall work all night if I have to. The bed is a midsleeper so not an easy job to put together I hasten to add! We are not having a party for her until the weekend so I'm off the hook with that - a simple family supper with cake will do the trick. 

So here are the before photos - lovely and pink and full of girly clutter, which is how it should be, but needs rearranging and sorting and made a little more 'grown up'. The furniture is all too small for her now and she needs a lot of the toddler toys giving away or selling on e.bay to fund future purchases!

The New Toy Box
This box cost me ten pounds at the local Steptoes yard - sanded down, a lick of eggshell and a new cover and it looks great! Bargain!
I will post at the end of the week with before and after photos of the whole this space - just hoping it comes together alright. x

Thursday, 21 June 2012

Bath Sanctuary Hand Mask

Final Review

This is a product ( Original review) that I have been trying out to combat the battering my hands take on a daily basis with three kids in tow. You have to put a good amount of the mask, which is like a creamy souffle on your hands, then cover with some lightweight gloves overnight. You wash off any residue in the morning and follow up with hand cream . 

The Verdict

Now bear in mind I am a huge fan of most of Bath Spa products here and think they are fantastic value for money and hugely underrated, but......
I didn't feel that for the effort of sleeping in gloves that there was the huge difference over a month I would have liked to have seen. Sure, my hands were moisturised, but they have a lovely hand scrub and hand cream in their range that does a better job here (  I would say get these instead as the scrub makes a big impact).
I felt that the mask was absorbed very quickly and therefore was there really any point wearing the gloves? I also found even if I washed my hands afterwards there was still a tendency to leave bits on my skin. Personally, I wouldn't use it again, but try for yourself - it certainly left my hands moisturised and soft. I just prefer the other, simpler combination that is quicker and leaves my hands feeling deeply clean, smooth and moisturised.

I think scrubs are a strong point in their range and this  micro dermabrasion body renewal followed by their body moisture spray is a really good quick shower routine to get into to, especially pre holiday!

Wednesday, 20 June 2012

Wednesday Beauty Buys

I have a couple of products that I have tried over the last few weeks that I have not used before, but liked the look of. I like products that don't take themselves too seriously and don't cost the earth so you are free to try them out at not too much cost. They were all from the Soap and Glory range that I got from Boots at a 3 for 2 offer . The first two were a couple of body scrubs/polishes and the third a wrinkle filler ( oh yeah). 

The first is Sugar Crush Body Scrub with smashed brown sugar and sweet lime, almond oil and macadamia grains. This has almost a sticky texture to it, but leaves a lovely moisturised residue . Out of the two, this is a thicker scrub, but I found it gentler on the skin and just as effective.

Sugar Crush Body Scrub

The second is Flake Away with skin smoothing sea salt, grapeseed, and almond oils . It is described as a shea butter, sugar and peach sea powder spa powder polish. This could be used as a polish after Sugar Crush to give a really smooth finish or on it's own. This was definitely the harsher of the two scrubs in  my opinion , but I found something quite self righteous about the feel of those tiny grains rubbing away at those rough areas of skin! Also less of a residue in my opinion. Both scrubs/polishes leave your skin delightfully smooth - worth every penny, especially at the current deal.

Flake Away

The third item is an instant facial line filler called The Full Monty. This is applied to give a reduced look to the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and says ( very much tongue in cheek)"features virtual retouching technology!" However, it does smooth out the skin around the eyes in particular and having reached an age where I am ticking that particular box ( see my post Beyond the tick in the box ) that is rather attractive. I did like this product and found it worked , although the temptation is to use too much in which case the small pot will not last long.....

The Full Monty- dab on instant wrinkle filler.


Monday, 18 June 2012

Music MondayWhats playing on your ipod this week?

This week on my ipod is U2 - It's a Beautiful Day ( Play it Loud!!)

Saturday, 16 June 2012

Statement Jewelry

Bold or Subtle?

Whats do you prefer in jewelry? Do you like big bold statement necklaces or delicate silver and gold pieces? I would usually wear a simple silver chain on a daily basis with some small silver earrings - mainly because of years of having small children pull necklaces off me within minutes of putting them on. Now my kids are getting to the age where a "No!" has more of an instant effect, I am increasingly drawn, like a magpie, to stunning pieces like these:

 Dark and pale jade green necklace with drop earrings.

Rose Pink necklace and matching earrings with glass and silver detail

These both came from a little shop in Budleigh Salterton in Devon called Divine. They don't have a website yet, but it is imminent! They were both around £15 for the necklace and earrings - bargain. 

Thursday, 14 June 2012

Low Maintenance Beauty.

False Eyelashes , Shellac Nails and St. Tropez Self Tan

Is there such a thing as low maintenance beauty? I think we'd like to believe there is, but to get a few weeks of less input you have to do a bit of work!! So - I've invested in some extra eyelashes for the first time to avoid the constant mascara dilemma on the beach and a shellac manicure. That and some St. Tropez self tan and I feel almost presentable. The close up is a little scary -  but look at the lashes! Love them. They should last two - three  weeks before they need infilling. 

Shellac nails in Tropics

Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Wednesday Beauty Buys


I always do find myself returning to certain favourite brands that you just can't go wrong with and Mac is one of them. We are off on holiday soon so I treated myself to a few goodies from their range....

Mac Make up
It is more expensive than your over the counter products, but I find lasts and the quality is just fabulous. If I want a foundation that gives a bit more coverage than a tinted moisturiser, I go for this one.This is still a lightweight foundation but it gives a lovely, flawless finish to your skin and it remains in place all day! There are plenty of shades to choose from to suit your skin tone. It is the Pro Longwear Range.

Pro Longwear PPF10 Foundation

This is one of their powder blushes. I got it in Fleur power which is a pink coral colour - more pink than coral. Pretty for the summer. You only need a little, so again it lasts and lasts.
Powder Blush

This lip colour is one of their pro longwear range again . I have not used this product before, but wanted something that would give my lips colour through the day and last a little longer than 10 minutes. We went into town on Saturday and even after lunch at Wagamamas , I still had a blast of colour on! Amazing! However, I wouldn't trust myself to reapply the colour part of this without a mirror, as one false move and you would have colour where you didn't want it for a very long time! You do apply the stain and then a gloss on top which I did reapply during the day, but at the moment I am  loving this lip product. I went for the Perenial Rose colourway.

Pro Longwear Lip Colour

I also topped up on my favourite moisturiser of all time from Dermalogica . I get this from Look Fantastic ( link in the side bar). I love the Dermalogica range and if you read the reviews on this site I think you'd be hard pushed to find a bad one. It is such a lovely moisturiser - a great all rounder!

Skin Smoothing Cream

I am still hunting down a perfect brown, black mascara - any suggestions? I've tried so many over the years and not found one I've stuck with .............

Monday, 11 June 2012

Music Monday - Whats playing on your ipod this week?

Monday 10th June

This week on my ipod is Mark Cohn - 'Walk through this World.' See my side bar for  more from Mark!

Wednesday, 6 June 2012

Wednesday Beauty Buys

Redken Powder Refresh

I have been looking for a dry shampoo or similar to take camping with us. I am not the most willing of campers and the toiletry arrangements have the capacity to fill me with dread! I will try and cope with a couple of hair washes a week as there is nowhere to blow dry or straighten which for someone who washes their hair every two days is quite a feat.....However this year things are going to be different as I have discovered this lovely product. 

Redken Powder Refresh

This is an aerosol powder/dry shampoo that absorbs oil, extends the life of a blow dry and instantly refreshes your style .... and it does! I find it doesn't leave a grey residue either or have a horrid build up. It is also useful as a styling product as it adds volume as well - a bit similar to using a hair spray, but without the firm hold. It adds more volume than firm hold.  Lovely - a bit on the pricey side, as the can doesn't last that long and I have gone through one bottle already. However, for a weeks camping, to have hair that is not plastered to my head I think it is worth every penny! I also am using the Redken Extreme Shampoo range at the moment - beautiful. You can get all of this range at Look Fantastic - the link is in the side column of my blog. Well worth signing up to the sites I am listing here for money off and vouchers....especially for us beauty junkies! Still waiting with excitement for my first ever JolieBox Beauty Box! The only one who understands my excitement in my household is my little girl who is 4... We shall share the unveiling together!

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

Beyond the tick in the box.

34 -45

I've always been pretty laid back about the passing years, adopting the somewhat careless attitude of, there's not much you can do about it anyway. I'm also helpfully married to someone 8 years older than me and I generally feel smugly young by comparison. However, I had to recently complete one of those forms that asked you to tick the box to indicate which age category you fall into and it unsettled me slightly! It has only been in the last few years when I have become more aware of the fact that the world around me is ageing and therefore so am I, that the number associated with my name has begun to have a bit more significance! My eldest son has begun to drape, rather than sit on the sofa and he wears shoes a size one larger than mine, reminding me he is rapidly approaching adolescence. The kitchen we installed as newlyweds needs replacing and even though we never finished the whole house the first time round, it needs  painting again. My children are now all at school and the option of returning to teaching was met with a ' you would need to be retrained to be on our books' type of attitude. I'm considered presently unemployable having been at home looking after my children for the last decade.

The birthdays we celebrate with our friends are increasingly 'landmark' birthdays and these tend to be borne with steely determination and much alcohol to ease the transition into the next decade. Somehow, it is not so much the next big birthday looming that has the ability to drive dread into my heart , but the thought that I am moving beyond the box I can presently tick! The next box includes ages I don't want to think about yet, let alone admit I am approaching with ever alarming speed. Whose decision was it anyway, to cut off our inclusion in a group mid way through a decade and suddenly thrust us with rapid certainty towards our 50's with the  34- 45 box....

What does it take to maintain membership in a box  - must I deny that I love to wear  Boden , or that I need to do my pelvic floor exercises more often than I brush my teeth, or admit that I thought that 'Url' was the latest trendy baby name. It seems that age not only catches up with us in our appearance, but also in the bureaucracy that closes in on us. I'm still not convinced there is any point trying to hide the advancing years - I'm sure even Tesco could hazard a pretty accurate guess at my age (as well as details ranging from  my bra size to the actual day my youngest child was potty trained and I stopped buying nappies). Anyway, for the moment I am still safely ensconced in my present box so why do  I even resent having to tick this damn box ? 

I suppose I'd rather just write my actual age.... or lie.

Monday, 4 June 2012

Music Monday - Whats playing on your ipod this week?

Monday 4th June

This week on my ipod is Eva Cassidy - Fields of Gold.

Saturday, 2 June 2012

The Plumb.

"Daddy I think you need a plumb" was my 4 years old advice after hours wasted trying to fix a leaky toilet - wise words and ones which have since been heeded. 
My husband rather sees himself as a expert in most fields, who simply just doesn't have the time to give to the never ending list of jobs we have to do. The rest of us would tend to lean towards the opinion of well meaning amateur or reluctant odd job man.  Personas for some reason he seems somewhat reluctant to adopt. 
However , having wasted a few days trying to mend the aforementioned leaky toilet the wise advice was taken , the 'plumb ' was called and the toilet fixed within a matter of minutes.  With a combination of smug 'I knew it' looks and sheepish 'I should have done that myself' glances , peace was restored and with the early morning ritual of racing for the one working toilet relegated to the past , it was decided to file this under ' best not mentioned again'.