31 January 2012

Project 365: #144 Thai green curry

After indulging in a Chinese takeaway last night, a healthy stir fry seemed like a good way to go tonight!  No noodles, just mange tout, courgette, butternut squash, onions, spinach and bok choi chucked in a wok for five mins and some chicken cooked in a thai green curry sauce.  Not really much else to say about this, other than that it was delicious!

30 January 2012

Rituals Yogi Flow shower foam review

According to the Rituals website "Yogi Flow foaming shower gel sensation is a unique shower foam containing organic ingredients sweet almond oil and Indian rose.  Ancient Ayuverdic ingredient sweet almond oil restores the skin's moisture balance"  So does it really do what it says?

When you squirt the gel out of the bottle, that's exactly what it is - gel.  Then it starts to foam......and it grows.....and grows......and grows......  Pretty amazing actually - you don't even need to rub it!  It's a bit strange using foam as a shower gel - the first time you use it, it feels a bit like you're covering yourself in shaving foam!  The foam spreads very easily so you don't need to use too much which means that the bottle will last a decent amount of time.  The scent is very light and quite flowery.  Not that horrible, strong flowery smell though - strong enough that you notice it but light enough that it's not sickly - just right!

At £6.50 for 200ml, I don't think Yogi Flow is too extortionately priced.  Probably a little on the expensive side for a shower gel but it's really a pampering product rather than an everyday product and for that, I'd be perfectly happy to pay £6.50.

The scent of the foam really makes you feel like you're using a luxury product and it definitely made my skin feel nice and smooth.  I couldn't smell the scent of the foam after my skin was dry, but I'm not really a fan of that anyway - it usually tends to cause a problem with perfume!

Would I buy it at full price?
Definitely!  I'd be relatively happy to pay £6.50 for this product - not for everyday use but definitely for when I want to pamper myself.

I received a free sample of the Rituals Yogi Flow shower foam in my December GlossyBox but the views here are entirely honest and I have not been paid to write this review.

29 January 2012

Project 365: #143 Hello beautiful purse!

It was my birthday the other day (27 - argh!) and Danny made me give him a long list of things I wanted.  Top of the list was this Ted Baker purse and the boy did good in getting me the bigger one than I'd mentioned!  I absolutely adore it - not only the outside but the inside is beautiful too!

I was completely spoilt to be fair (by everyone - not just Danny!) - in addition to the purse I got a couple of charms for my Pandora, a pair of Dune pumps, a couple of DVDs and some Calvin Klein pjs and dressing gown (literally the softest thing ever and the most comfy pjs ever too!)

26 January 2012

♪ ♫ These boots are made for walking.... ♪ ♫

Don't get me wrong, I like handbags and clothes as much as the next girl, but shoes are my true love.  Nothing compares to that feeling you get when you put on a new pair of shoes.  Paolo Nutini couldn't have put it better when he said "I put some new shoes on and suddenly everything is right..." (is it a little concerning that this is one of my favourite quotes of all time?)

In my eyes, you can't beat a good pair of shoe boots.  With your feet enclosed, you don't have to worry about your shoes slipping off when your feet are cold or when the shoes have lost their brand new tightness.  You still get that buzz of wearing a stunning pair of heels but you can also walk in them without having to clench your toes with every step and contend with every male within a 10m radius thinking (and if you work in my office, loudly saying it too!) "she can't walk in those shoes - why is she even trying?"

I adore Kurt Geiger shoes and these shoes are from their Carvela brand.  With their fleecy appearance, 'Stella' shoe boots are perfect for the cold days that we in the UK are accustomed to at this time of year, whilst still maintaining the stylish look for which Carvela and Kurt Geiger are renowned.  There's nothing more flattering than a pair of high heels, especially when combined with a platform for a bit of extra height, and these are bound to live up to the expectations of comfort that I've already built up through owning a number of pairs of Kurt Geiger heels.

I'm convinced.  I need these shoes immediately.  And that's what buying shoes is all about, right?

Project 365: #142 Easily lead

I met up with Aisling for dinner the other night and towards the end of the meal, she suggested we go and look at the Mulberry handbags in House of Fraser.  I'd always promised myself a Mulberry handbag as a reward to myself for qualifying but Ash is extremely good at persuading me to buy things and since she has three Mulberry handbags herself, I panicked a bit!  I made her promise not to bully me into it, since I could get 25% off by getting my mum to buy it (staff discount at John Lewis!) and she agreed.  Then we got there.........and saw big red signs stating that House of Fraser had 30% off.  Uh oh!

The first bad I saw was a teal Heritage Bayswater satchel and fell in love!  Ash did too and instantly began trying to convince me to buy it (yes, the agreement that she wouldn't instantly failed!)  When I looked at the price, I knew I had to have it - a saving of 30% is a huge amount of money on a Mulberry handbag!  You only live once, right?

25 January 2012

Another Nails Inc deal!

Hi girls!

First thing's first - a big hello to all my new followers!  A lot of you seem to have discovered my blog through Leanne's 'few to follow' on Friday so a big thanks to Leanne for featuring me last week :)

Now on to a deal that I had to tell you all about......most of you know how obsessed I am with Nails Inc polishes and when this deal came around before, I definitely took advantage - I fully intend to again this time!  On Friday (27th January), Nails Inc are running a promotion of 6 varnishes for £19 (includes delivery and are full size versions which usually retail at £11 each)  The only downside is that you can't choose the colours you receive - it's a lucky dip.  Nails Inc have stated that the colours included are:

1. 2. 3. 4.

Also included are Aspen (metallic red), Chelsea, Maple Street (chocolate brown), Blenheim Terrace, Berkeley Square (deep grey), Villiers Street (vibrant red), Culford Gardens and Garrick Street (metallic blue).

17 January 2012

Project 365: #141 Nail varnish addiction

I spent this weekend tidying my bedroom and sorting out all my old study notes which I no longer need - the plan being that if I start to clear out some stuff now, it'll be that much easier when we actually buy a house and it comes to packing up my things to move out.  My bedside table was a bit of a state - it tends to become a bit of a dumping ground for things that I can't be bothered to find a home for before I go to bed, and since it's actually the top of my chest of drawers, it's pretty big (hence it collects even more stuff!)  Now granted, I do always sit on my bed to paint my nails, and I have been changing colours a lot recently, but this is probably a bit of an excessive number of bottles to have found just out on my bedside table?  Whoops!

16 January 2012

Project 365: #140 "I'm not that old......oh wait, yes I am!"

I got a letter in the post from the DVLA today.  My first thought?  "Oh no - have I been caught speeding?!"  (I'd like to point out at this point that I don't go racing around like a lunatic and I haven't got any points on my licence!)  Thankfully when I opened the letter I discovered that it wasn't speeding points.  In some ways, maybe worse - it was a licence renewal form.  For a minute, I was completely dumbfounded.  Until I read the page in front of me - "you must renew the photograph on your driving licence every ten years...."  For a minute I thought "What?!  I haven't had my driving licence for ten years!  They've sent me this by mistake!"  Then I realised I got my provisional right after my 17th birthday.  And I'm going to be 27 at the end of the week.  Oh.

15 January 2012

Project 365: #139 Breakfast

Before we left Donnington Valley (and went straight to work - boo!) we just had time for breakfast.  I'm not a big cooked breakfast fan anyway, although it did look good, but I decided I'd go for some fruit salad and toast.  Delicious, and just the way to kick start the post-Christmas, post-anniversary detox!

14 January 2012

Project 365: #139 One year anniversary

I've literally been dying to do this post!  Danny and I celebrated our year anniversary last week and to mark the occasion, we went to Donnington Valley Hotel & Spa.  Now, this place is really close to my house, but we decided that since the point of the stay wasn't to sightsee but was to relax, spend some time together, enjoy the spa and have a nice meal, it didn't really matter.

Now unfortunately I couldn't take a photo in the spa or pool (I wasn't sure that people would appreciate me standing in a corner taking photos!) so I've had to use ones from their website - much better than I'd take anyway though really!

Source for both photos

When we arrived, we headed straight to the gym for a short workout - on my part (and I'm pretty sure Danny's too) this was literally just because it was free, we were going to be spending the rest of the day relaxing and indulging and we felt we should do!  After this, we headed back to the room, showered and went to the bar for lunch.

Prices in the bar were relatively expensive, as you'd expect at a four star hotel and spa, but when the sandwiches we'd ordered arrived, the price was completely justified!  It was easily the best sandwich I've ever had (Danny said the same about his)

Bacon, lettuce, tomato and egg mayonnaise toasted sandwich
Roast beef, horseradish, tomato and rocket sandwich

After lunch, we made our way through to the Spa where we had a couple of complimentary treatments booked. Danny had decided on the Heavenly Hydration Salt Brushing Treatment and I went for the Intensive Mineralising Facial.  It was the first time I'd had a treatment at a Spa - we'd visited one in Mexico but only experienced the hydrotherapy pools and steam rooms rather than actual treatments.  It was absolute bliss and we both felt so relaxed afterwards!

In the evening, after some time relaxing in the pool, jacuzzi and sauna, we had a table booked in The WinePress Restaurant.  A three course meal was included in the spa break that we'd booked, so obviously we had to indulge in all three courses!

Scallops with black pudding, pea purée and pancetta

Sea bass, horseradish mash and ratatouille

Raspberry crème brûlée with shortbread
Chocolate torte with berry compote

I've honestly never been so full!  We'd planned to go for a drink in the bar afterwards but we were so full that neither of us could face it - clear sign of vast amounts of food!  All in all, a perfect day - here's to the next year! ♥

13 January 2012

Project 365: #138 Happy Birthday Danny/New Year's Eve

I'm quite rubbish at wrapping presents.  I can just about cope with boxes, but anything that's a slightly odd shape gets wrapped in vast amounts of paper and Sellotape in an attempt to cover my lack of skills.  Danny's abnormally good at wrapping so I felt extra pressure to wrap his presents well and spent quite some time doing so - I think I managed!  The present on top is a belt - you wouldn't have guessed though, right?

You might've guessed from the title of this post that Danny's birthday also happens to be New Year's Eve (yes, this post is very late!)  We went to Frankie & Benny's for a late lunch with his parents, brother and brother's fiancée then headed home to get started on preparing things for the house party in the evening.  Despite the fact that his sister and brother had invited most people, we managed to get the short straw and spent a good two hours cooking up any number of party food treats - I do love mini sausage rolls and cocktail sausages though!  Yummy! :)

12 January 2012

Project 365: #137 Birthday prep

Danny's not really a cake person but admitted to liking gingerbread the other day.  Unfortunately I didn't get around to making him a cake (which I'd been planning to do in secret!) since I spent most of the week before his birthday either with him or busy doing other things, but when I arrived home the day before his birthday, it turned out that Mum had made him a ginger cake!  I iced it (as you can see!) and presented it to him whilst carrying a lighter and singing Happy Birthday!  Unfortunately we didn't have any birthday candles so the lighter was the closest thing I could get - I think it worked quite well!

8 January 2012

Project 365: #136 Bubble and squeak

I headed over to Danny's on Boxing Day evening and experienced their family tradition of bubble and squeak, which they have every Boxing Day.  In my experience, bubble and squeak is fried leftover cabbage and potato but Danny's version is literally everything leftover from Christmas Day, all mashed up and fried together with some onion.  And I have to say, it's absolutely delicious!  Max obviously agrees - look at him closely guarding Danny!

Project 365: #135 Christmas Day

I spent Christmas Day at home with my parents and Rob, grandparents and auntie.  We always have Christmas together as a family and this year was no exception.  Christmas morning is spent opening presents  and our stockings before the others arrive, then a big family lunch followed by chilling the afternoon away.  Bliss!  And as you can see, what with all the presents above and my present from Danny yesterday, I was very spoilt :)

2 January 2012

Project 364: #134 Christmas Eve

Since we spent Christmas apart, Danny and I exchanged Christmas presents on Christmas Eve this year.  Although we both knew roughly what we'd got from each other (I'd asked for a Pandora bracelet and he'd mentioned that he'd like an Xbox), the actual charms I got were a surprise and I absolutely love them!  I'd wanted a Pandora bracelet for a while and wanted the charms to mean something to me.  I pointed out the teal butterfly charm when we were in the shop, purely because I love the colour, but the heart and shoe are perfect!  The boy did good :)

Project 365: #133 My first Deborah Lippmann polish

I've heard a lot of good things about Deborah Lippmann nail varnishes, so when I received Razzle Dazzle in my December GlossyBox, I couldn't wait to try it out!  It took three coats to get the look I wanted, which seemed like rather a lot, but it was incredibly chip resistant - it took 8 days before I had any chips at all which I thought was pretty impressive!  A perfect nail varnish for Christmas parties!

1 January 2012

Project 365: #132 Tapas

Clockwise from top left: pan catalán, ensalada mixta, pollo ajilo, tortilla Española, brocheta de chorizo y pollo, albóndigas en salsa de tomate, cordero guisado con jerez y pimentón, pollo empanizado con salsa de ajo, patatas bravas

Time seems to fly recently and it had been ages since I'd had a catch up with my best friend, Bee.  She asked me if we were free for dinner and drinks with her and her boyfriend, Sam, just before Christmas so we all met up one evening at El Sabio - a new tapas restaurant in Newbury.  I love tapas and we've only just got a tapas restaurant in Newbury so I'd been dying to try it out.  Danny and I tried to go one Saturday night but it was fully booked so I was pleased to finally try it!  Definitely worth the wait - it was delicious!

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