Monday, 22 August 2016

I Won A Book on Goodreads Giveaways!

I was so excited to win my first book on the Goodreads giveaways. I’ve just recently got more into the book community online and was delighted to have been sent ‘The Ice-Cream Makers’ by the author Ernest Van der Kwast. It sounds like the perfect summer read and the preface seemed quite intriguing. I really want to get my reading groove back, over the summer I’ve been quite prolific in my reading but seem to have slowed down. I’m currently reading a Sarra Manning novel and gradually getting back into the swing on things. I have a little pile of books accumulated from my birthday along with a few others such as this one. So I will leave you with a little info about this book. P.S. isn’t the front cover so dreamy? I love the pastels.

“A dazzling novel about an Italian ice-cream dynasty, tradition, ambition, and the sensation of lemon sorbet melting on your tongue. In the far north of Italy lies the valley of the ice-cream makers: about a dozen villages where, for generations, people have specialised in making ice cream. Giuseppe Talamini claims it was actually invented here. Every spring his family sets off for the ice-cream parlour in Rotterdam, returning to the mountains only in winter. Eldest son Giovanni Talamini decides to break with this tradition by pursuing a literary career. But then one day his younger brother Luca approaches him with a highly unusual request. Now Giovanni faces a dilemma: serve the family's interests one last time or choose his own path in life, once and for all.”

How is your summer reading going? Do you have any book recommendations? :-) xxx

Friday, 19 August 2016

Pacifica Hawaiian Ruby Guava Body Butter

Today I wanted to talk to you about this lovely body butter I’ve been using by the brand Pacifica. They do a variety of scents but the Hawaiian ruby guava one appealed to me most, I love this fruity summer product and have been using it every time I get out of the shower. Here’s a description… “Pacifica Hawaiian ruby guava body butter helps fight signs of aging while adding deep moisture and protection. Made with nature's best moisturizers, shea butter, almond oil and safflower oil, Pacifica's paraben-free body butter is a skin must-have. Inspired by a surfing trip to Hawaii, this sexy and sultry tropical blend combines sweet, berry-like notes of guava with a bright, citrusy top note of pomelo and a warm and subtle coconut base.”

The beautiful combination of sweet and fruity is very noticeable after applying and easily doubles up as a perfume. It lingers on well into the day and it really is like summer in a tube. The butter is rich and moisturising, perfect for people with dry skin. It sinks in fairly quickly too. I was attracted to the packaging, it’s just gorgeous, and I love the bright colours. Each range in the brand has a different design which I think is lovely. Also what’s really great is Pacifica do not test on animals, are cruelty-free and vegan. Products are also free from nasties such as parabens. At £14.95 it seems you are paying for what you get and I’m sure the 236ml tube will last well. I would highly recommend this product! Buy it online here.

Do you like Pacifica too? What products from the brand would you like to try? :-) xxx

Friday, 12 August 2016

Higher Living Super Fruits Tea

I wanted to share my thoughts with you on this Higher Living brand of fruit tea which I put it on my birthday list. Here’s some info I found on the products taste: “A bright blend of fruit and berries that offers thirst quenching pleasure in a cup. Pleasingly tart by itself or add a bit of honey for a different taste experience. Try it cooled and over ice too. Ingredients: hibiscus, rosehips, apples, orange peels, cape gooseberry, cranberries, licorice, mango, pomegranate”. I’ve come to realise I don’t think I’m a big fan of berries in fruit tea, as they mentioned it’s a bit tart and maybe that’s the reason I wasn’t satisfied. I’ve been adding sweeteners which makes it taste a bit sweeter, I could even try their suggestion of adding honey. It was okay but just not a favourite so I might look at other options from the brand.

Having said that I was pleased with other aspects of this tea. Here’s a little info from the website: “15 biodegradable pyramid teapees within. Made with care by us in the UK. Naturally caffeine free, certified organic. £4.99” The outer and inner packaging was excellent and their values too. I was initially drawn to this before purchasing, the look of the tea is pleasing to the eye and would make an ideal gift. At almost five pounds a box, it appears a bit too much money but I get that you are paying for quality and how it’s been made. So my thoughts are a bit undecided to whether it’s a hit or not. Buy online here.

Let me know if you have tried this or have any tea recommendations! :-) xxx

Saturday, 6 August 2016

July Beauty, Fashion & Lifestyle Favourites

July was a nice month for me with my birthday and other little outings over this period. My actual birthday was quite quiet but I was blessed to receive some lovely gifts from my family, my birthday haul here. Over the last couple of weeks I’ve been catching up with blog photography and not had as much time to experiment with new products. Towards the end of the month though, I have found myself gathering a few awesome favourites which I wanted to share with you. I’ve been enjoying the sunshine, and therefore some summer related fashion pieces. I picked up these floral cropped jeans from Peacocks earlier in the year and have been getting my use out of them. I styled them alongside this M&S blue tunic and have been wearing this outfit combo loads!

Unusually I have a lot of new homeware pieces that I haven’t really shared on my blog yet although I thought it was time I did. For example I purchased this beautiful dream catcher for my room in pretty purple and pink colours. Its fair trade and handcrafted, which is brilliant. They are stocked on Amazon and do all sizes and colours, link here. Another little piece for my room, was this collection of purple glitter coasters and I’ve already had compliments on them. These too were found on Amazon, link here. I previously mentioned over the summer I’ve been getting into gardening, so it felt right to show something, I planted these mixed bright flower seeds and now I’m eager for them to flower.

The final ‘lifestyle’ related thing is a book, ‘Don’t Even Think About It’ by Sarah Mlynowski has been a favourite of mine from a stack I’ve completed. I did a mini review series blog post here if you want to find out more. I will say I loved the unique science-fiction twist in the plot, and is suitable for younger readers. I was so lucky to win a competition online, and so far I’ve been enjoying two of the Zoella products which I was sent. Both the body cream and bath salts smell insanely good, look out for a little review. I’ve been trialling some products by a brand called Organic Surge, and I wanted to mention in particular their shampoo, I just love it! The strong apple scent is gorgeous and the brand offer more natural alternatives to everyday products. Lastly I’ve been enjoying two Pacifica products, their Waikiki Pikake roll on perfume (an old fav!) and the Hawaiian Ruby Guava body butter which is the ultimate summer time treat.

What have you been up to in July? Which item interested you the most? xxx

Friday, 5 August 2016

Beauty Products I Won In A Competition.

Last month I won a competition, and received some beautiful goodies through the post. I was really made up with what I was given, including two Zoella products and a The Balm eyeshadow palette. The lovely Brigitte over on her YouTube channel was the one running the competition, and luckily I was picked at random as the winner. Sending my thanks again! Her channel is here if you want to check it out, she does some amazing videos relating to fashion and beauty. I enjoy her videos, and I’m sure you will too! I will be doing some reviews of these products, I have already started testing some out too, and I’ve been delighted with them so far. July was a busy month for me, with my birthday along with other things, now that I have a little more time, I’m looking forward to using these products as well as some from my birthday.

Do you like Zoella or The Balm for beauty? What’s made your month? :-) xxx

Saturday, 30 July 2016

Charbrew Pineapple & Vanilla Tea

Today I wanted to share with you my favourite drink of the summer so far. I’ve been having this Charbrew pineapple and vanilla tea hot but I imagine you could easily have it iced, something I would love to try on another day. I wasn’t expecting to like the taste as much as I did, but pineapple and vanilla make an awesome combination. Both fruits are apparent in the flavour and smell. This drink just screams summer, and I’ve already been trying the strawberry and kiwi variety just recently. This is my first Charbrew purchase, but I’m sure many more are to come. I have the chocolate orange edition on my shopping list which would be more appropriate as the seasons change. The brand offers naturally caffeine-free teas, and all tea bags are biodegradable pyramids. The packaging is super pretty, I love the bright colours and they would make perfect gifts/party favours. I’ve found Holland&Barrett are the best stockists to my knowledge, and for a pack of 15 tea portions, you pay £3.49. Click here to view the range.

What is your favourite summer beverage? Have you tried anything by Charbrew? :-) xxx

Friday, 29 July 2016

Original Source Shower Gels

Today I’m returning with a rekindle of a brand I’ve been using on and off since my teens. Yes I’m talking about Original Source! Although they seem to bring out new scents out quite frequently these days, I wanted to get back into using their lemon & tea tree as well as the lime fragrances. I believe these two were the first of many that they brought out, and to this day they are my favourite. Both have a very happy and uplifting aroma when used in the shower and the scent lingers around for a good while. They are quite moisturising and I like the gel kind of formula. It mentions on the packaging that they use 100% natural fragrance, are vegan and cruelty-free plus the packaging is 100% recycled. And they are so affordable; priced around £1 for each 250ml tube. I tend to purchase them on the Superdrug website, they often do offers and provide a large selection of their products. Superdrug offer free delivery to beauty card holders too. Shop here.

Do you like Original Source too? Which scents do you favour? :-) xxx

Saturday, 23 July 2016

I Made Coffee and Walnut Cake with Buttercream.

Hope you are having a nice weekend so far, in today’s post I wanted to share with you my latest bake. As you can guess by the title I made coffee and walnut cake. It was my first proper attempt at buttercream icing, I added melted coffee granules for an authentic coffee flavour. I think adding the icing, made the taste of the whole cake much nicer. I also made a base and a top to the cake so I could put a generous helping of the buttercream in the middle (and on the top!). I’ve seen a few people put whole walnuts on for decoration, I decided to brake the nuts into crumbs to sprinkle them more randomly, and the effect seemed to work just as nicely. I shared my results with family and friends and got some really positive feedback! :-)

Do you like baking? What is your favourite sweet treat? :-) xxx

Thursday, 21 July 2016

Birthday Present Haul 2016

So my birthday was last week, and I got some lovely presents and had a birthday cake with my family. My Mum and I agreed I would get a budget to buy myself specific ‘blogger’ related bits and pieces as well as have a few surprises. As you may notice there is a summer theme throughout my gifts, including some fruity themed surprises my Mum bought me such as PJs, socks, knickers and an ice-cream puzzle. Carrying on with the fruity/summer theme I got two new herbal teas to try (and review!). Something I’ve been more into this year is natural beauty, so I got a few makeup, bath, and home related items. Since about January I’ve been more interested in reading, and following people on Booktube/Goodreads and because of this I got a few books which sounded fun to read and are highly praised in that community.

I got a few miscellaneous items with a meaning behind them, for example I’ve been developing my gardening skills so my Dad bought me some flower seeds and a vase to put flower clippings in. I have already planted the seeds and have a few random but pretty lilac flowers in the vase. My Mum and I are into arts and crafts, I make handmade cards but she thought I could get into knitting with this beginners guide book. I think I might enjoy it too if I get the hang of it, as it seems quite therapeutic. And lastly what’s a birthday without a box of chocs? I’ve been putting them in the fridge with the hot weather, Thornton’s do the best chocolates! I really appreciate the thought gone into my presents from my family, and I think I will get enjoyment from them in weeks to come! :-)

Has it been your birthday recently? Or did you get some gift or shopping inspiration from this post? Hope you are having a lovely day so far. xxx

Saturday, 16 July 2016

My Latest Summer Reads.

Revelry by Lucy Lord

This was the first novel I delved into as I thought it was the ultimate summer read. The book revolves around besties Bella and Poppy and they’re very glamorous summer going to Glastonbury, Ibiza and beyond. I finished this book remarkably quickly, as the easy writing style and the interesting friendship dramas made me want to continue. The plot was a little fluffy, and although there were some unexpected twists they didn’t seem well developed. I did feel like I was being transported into a sometimes desirable lifestyle and enjoyed going along for the ride. 2.5/5 Stars.

Don't Even Think About It by Sarah Mlynowski

I had high hopes for this one as the part science-fiction element to the plot really intrigued me. It revolves around a high school class receiving a contaminated flu vaccination, and the affected students being able to read each other’s thoughts. It was a surprisingly light, entertaining read that made me chuckle out loud on many occasions. My favourite bit of the book was the concept, but the easy written language and humour were also happily noted. 4/5 Stars.

Unsticky by Sarra Manning

I’ve only just began reading this one, and as a fan of the author my expectations are fairly high. This older book by Manning, is centred on Grace and her developing connection with art dealer Vaughn. So far I love Vaughn’s individuality as a character. I’m looking forward to seeing Graces character develop in the way Manning does with her other heroines. I’m sensing a pretty woman kind of story with high fashion and art thrown in. I will let you know how I get on! :-)

Which book out of the three captured your attention the most? 
What have been your latest summer reads? :-) xxx