Sunday, 28 December 2014

My Dry Skin Saviours

Now I don't know about you but the winter weather plays havoc on my skin! Every winter I get ridiculously dry skin especially on my hands. This year, however, adding pregnancy into the mix my skin has been horrendous. It's been very sensitive aswell which makes having dry skin very painful. So I thought I would do a post about what dry skin products have been saving my life this very cold winter.

First off lets start with a real gem that I've found! The Garnier Intensive 7 Days Ultra-Replenishing Lotion. Its specifically designed for very dry skin and because it is formulated with Shea Butter it not only smells amazing but it makes my skin feel so smooth and soft for ages after. I beg to differ about how it claims that hydration is felt for up to 7 days but as I like to apply moisturiser every day I'm not too fussed about it not lasting. It's fast absorbing aswell which is great for after I've gotten out of the bath in the evenings and all I want to do is get into my jarmies and climb straight into my warm bed, as I'm not stood for ages waiting for my moisturiser to dry. Overall, I have been very impressed with this product and how hydrating and kind it is to my very sensitive skin!

Next I have been using Avon's Skin So Soft Tissue Oil. I bought this because the skin on my tummy has been very sore and itchy lately which makes me think that stretch marks are getting ready to make an appearance! I'd read somewhere that applying an oil to stretch marks is better than applying a cream so thought I would give this a try. It's formulated with Phytol, Vitamin A and Vitamin B. Its also enriched with Argan Oil which leaves my skin feeling gorgeous and it smells lovely too. I have been using this on my stomach, hips and boobs in the hope I won't get really bad stretch marks, even though I'm well aware that stretch marks are inevitable I'm still going to try to reduce them. 

Moving onto my hands which I feel are the worst out of all my dry skin dramas of the moment! I like to use anti-bacterial gel on my hands which really strips my skin of all its natural moisture. So when the skin on my hands gets so bad like it is now, I whip out the big guns! The Body Shop Hemp Hand Protector for very dry skin. Hemp oil is a great way to restore moisture and nutrients to the skin and after only one application of this hand cream I notice a huge difference. It really relieves the pain of having dry skin, and because of all this we can forgive the awful stench that hemp has!

Finally, my lips are always dry. All year round! I don't know what it is but I always have dry flaky lips. It's horrible! So, recently I have been using Maybelline's Baby Lips Intense Care. I apply this to my lips whenever I remember to during the day and it definitely makes a difference. My lips feel instantly soft and hydrated. I always have to apply this before applying lipstick as otherwise the lipstick just clings to the dry skin and looks awful. 

So those are my dry skin saviours this year! What have you been using to keep dry skin at bay this winter?

Saturday, 27 December 2014

Review | Lush The Comforter Bubble Bar

I've always been intrigued by the Lush shop but was never brave enough to go in. As far as I knew it was a shop so overwhelmed by all the smells that you can't stand in there for more than two minutes without getting a headache. Oh, how I was wrong! I ventured in there a few weeks ago as I was feeling all 'bleurgh' as I tend to do these days and fancied to treat myself. Since that day I have been more than obsessed with Lush! I just want more and more and more. I definitely have the Lush bug!

This is the first product I have ever used from Lush and I will honestly be going back for more. I am well and truly converted. Its funny because I told the girl on the till that I had never used anything from Lush before and she said they'd have me converted in no time, and boy was she right! She told me this bubble bar called The Comforter was a great first time product to try.
I was baffled by this bubble bar! Who knew that something solid could create so many luxurious and gorgeous smelling bubbles?! It's amazing and so much fun! Even Mark would ask if he could crumble it under the water because its so clever. And the smell is just something else. It literally smells like sweeties, and I had to try with all my might not to take a big bite out of it! To give you an idea of the smell, the Lush website says 'Cassis Absolute gives a distinctive blackcurrant fragrance and bergamot adds an uplifting note.'
The sales girl told me that it would last for about 3 baths but I managed to make it last for 6 baths!!! And to be honest, I probably could have crumbled smaller bits and made it last even longer. So at £4.75 a bar, it is more than worth the price. 
That's not even the best bit! My most favourite part about this bubble bar, apart from the gorgeous smell and the luxurious mounds of bubbles, was that it turned my bath water pink! PINK!!! What girl doesn't want to lie in a bath full of sweetie smelling, pink watered bubbles?! You bring me that girl and I bet this bubble bar would more than change her mind.

So I don't know if you can tell but I was very excited about this product! What are your favourite Lush products and what would you recommend me to try next?

Tuesday, 23 December 2014

Weekly Roundup In Photos

My week this week has been quite a festive one! Not surprising since it's Christmas in two days. Can you believe it? This year has flown over. So other than chilling out this week with my mince pies and cups of tea, I've been devouring endless amounts of chocolate and enjoying long soaks in the bath with my Jo Malone candle lit and Christmas movies! Honestly, I stayed in the bath for two hours the other night while I watched Christmas with the Kranks, my all time favourite Christmas movie. 
On Friday night my family and I headed out to Sunderland Empire to watch the pantomime Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. I LOVE pantomimes, we go every year!
Then on Saturday morning my husband and I traveled down to Lincoln as we are staying with my mam over Christmas, and this year she has opted for a white Christmas tree which I just think looks gorgeous and I had to take a photo of it! Yesterday, we decided to take a trip over to a local garden centre as we heard they had real reindeers! We kept shouting all of Santa's reindeer names to them to see which ones they were but they didn't reply to any of them, how rude! The garden centre was gorgeous and so festive looking :)

So that's pretty much been my week. Make sure you leave a comment telling me how your week has been, festive or not?

Pregnancy | 28 Weeks

How far along? 28 weeks. I can't believe I'm this far along already. 

Baby's size: He's the size of a head of a cauliflower, and 16 inches long. I got my tape measure out this morning and I was blown away by this! I can't believe he's this long. He should be weighing in at about 2.5 lbs.

Total weight gain: I weighed myself a few days ago and I have gained another 8lbs. I'm not concerning myself with weight gain though.

Maternity clothes: I've been living in pyjamas this week and when I do need to go out I just put leggings on and a long top. I do need some proper maternity tops.

Best moment this week: We drove down to my mams on Saturday to spend Christmas here, and it was lovely letting her feel her grandson kicking for the first time.

Miss anything? Not anything that I can think of this week.

Movement? All the time! The little tinker was obviously just being trouble last week when I felt like he wasn't moving because this week he is back with a vengeance. He throws himself around all the time, I love it. I've also started to feel his little feet sticking out! Its such an odd feeling. 

Food cravings: Still coco pops!

Anything making you queasy or sick? Not this week.

Gender: Boy.

Symptoms: Legs cramps, fatigue, breathlessness, pelvic pain.

Belly button in or out? In.

Looking forward to: My physio appointment next week, my hips and back are agony and I can't wait to get it sorted.

Other fun things to note: The most embarrassing moment of my life happened yesterday! I fainted in tescos and got rushed to hospital. I think I just overheated, but everyone in tescos was so lovely and helpful. They can't explain why I fainted but like I said I probably just overheated and I think because I'm pregnant they thought it best to get me checked over at the hospital.

Sunday, 21 December 2014

The Christmas Tag

Christmas is definitely my favourite time of the year! I LOVE decorating my home and making it look all festive and cosy. And don't get me started on the Christmas movies!!!! This year my husband and I are going down to my mams for Christmas and I honestly can't wait because I haven't seen her since the start of October and I haven't spent a Christmas with her in about three years. It sucks living so far away from my mam but it always makes the time we do get together even more special <3

1. What is your favourite Christmas movie?
AH! I love this question. I have two favourite Christmas movies, there's no way I could just choose one! Elf and Christmas with the Kranks. It's not Christmas until we've watched both of these films.

2. Do you open your presents on Christmas Eve or Christmas morning?
Definitely on Christmas morning, and always waking up super duper early!

3. Do you have a favourite Christmas memory?
When I was younger my dad used to put his boots by the back door and pour talcum powder round it to look like snow as if Santa had been there. Even when we got older and didn't believe in Santa anymore he would still do it and make such a big deal about it, the little cutie!

4. Favourite festive food?
Pigs in blankets! They make Christmas!

5. Favourite Christmas gift?
I always get such lovely presents at Christmas I don't think I could choose a favourite. I'm always so grateful for what I get :)

6. Favourite Christmas scent?
Every year I love to burn a lovely cinnamon scented candle, it always reminds me of Christmas.

7. Do you have any Christmas Eve traditions?
Christmas movies! You always have to watch Christmas movies on Christmas Eve.

8. What tops your tree?
We don't have a star or anything but we have a little ornament type thing that says Peace at the top of our tree :)

9. As a kid what was the one (crazy, wild, extravagant) gift you always asked for but never received?
Every year once I was 17 I used to ask for a car. One year my nana bought me a little car money box so I could save for my own. I got the hint! haha.

10. What's the best part about Christmas for you?
Spending time with family definitely. I just love how the Christmas spirit makes everyone so happy and loving instead of the miserable sods everyone is the rest of the year round! Oh, and the food! Definitely the food haha.

I tag everyone who read this to do it and to get into the Christmas spirit!! :)


Friday, 19 December 2014

Everyday Makeup Look | Bold Lip

Seventeen Skin Wow 3 Way Highlighter
Rimmel Wake Me Up Concealer in Ivory
Bourjois Healthy Mix Foundation in Light Vanilla
Rimmel Clear Complexion Clarifying Powder in Transparent

Bourjois Delice de Poudre Bronzing Powder in colour 51
MUA Blusher in Candyfloss
MUA Undress Your Skin Shimmer Highlighter

Avon Eyeshadow Primer in Light Beige
Naked Urban Decay Basics in Naked 2 and w.o.s
Avon Big and Daring Mascara in Black

MAC eyeshadow in Bateau

Lasting Finish by Kate Moss in 107

Real Techniques Buffing Brush
Real Techniques Contour Brush
Real Techniques Blush Brush
Real Techniques Shading Brush

Thursday, 18 December 2014

Baby Wish List

I recently did a Mummy Wish List post so I thought it would be nice to do a Baby Wish List post for the things that I sit and dream about for baby but can't afford at the minute!

1. Chicco Next 2 Me Crib; Mothercare £149.99
I think this is such a lovely idea for a crib! Its dangerous to let your baby sleep in the bed with you incase you roll over in your sleep and suffocate them, so with this crib you just zip the side off and push it next to your bed so that baby is still close enough for you to keep an eye on them but not actually in the bed with you! Such a clever idea.

2. Tommee Tippee Closer To Nature Breast Feeding Kit; Argos £25.99
This starter kit literally has everything you need to help you breastfeed! I love it when stuff comes all in one set so you don't have to buy things individually. This set includes; a manual breast pump, 50 x disposable breast pads, 2 x Closer to Nature Easi-Vent 150ml bottles, 4 x milk storage lids, 4 x milk storage pots, 2 x pure soothers. I think I'm definitely going to make sure I get myself one of these as I think its a really good price for everything that you get.

3. Smart Shirt, Trousers and Braces Set; Next £19
Can we just take a moment to realise just how very cute this little outfit is!! I mean, just look at the braces! I absolutely love it and I really want it for little man. It can be his Sunday church outfit :)

4. Aston ISOFIX Base; Mamas and Papas £110
I think this would be a very handy thing to have but for £110 its just not do-able for us at the minute. Especially since a seatbelt does the exact same thing, but having this ISOFIX base means we don't always have to faff on with the seatbelt and making sure its on properly.

5. Pink Lining Yummy Mummy Hydrangea Print Changing Bag; John Lewis £79
This changing bag is just gorgeous! I really like it, however it's just madness to even think about spending nearly £80 on a changing bag! And not only that, but what if Mark needed to take the baby out? He'd have to be a yummy mummy for the day!

So that's my current baby wish list. No doubt it will change and plenty more will be added as I see things! Hope you've enjoyed reading :)

Wednesday, 17 December 2014

The Winter Tag

I was so excited to be tagged by the beautiful Lydia over at Fuzzy Peach Drops to do The Winter Tag. Check out her post here, and make sure you give her lovely blog a follow. I love anything winter and Christmas related. I'm one of those weird people who prefers winter to summer! I just find that its so much easier to warm yourself up in winter than it is to cool yourself down in summer, and there's nothing better than curling up on the sofa with the Christmas lights on, a hot chocolate and a Christmas movie on! 

1. What's your favourite seasonal drink from either Starbucks/Costa or your cafe of choice?
Last Christmas I worked at Costa and I honestly could not stop drinking their Gingerbread latte's! I haven't had one yet this year as I'm not drinking coffee with being pregnant but I have tried their Orange Hot Chocolate which is also devine! 

2. What accessories do you opt for? Scarf/boots/gloves?
Definitely a huge comfy scarf! I can't go anywhere without a scarf on when its cold.

3. What's your favourite tunes for this time of year?
Definitely the old classics. My all time favourite Christmas song is Wham - Last Christmas. I sing as loud as I can whenever it comes on! 

4. What scent or perfume do you find yourself favouring this time of year?
I've recently been wearing an Avon perfume called Incandessence Flame as it smells gorgeous and has really warm tones that I like for this time of year.

5. What candle's will you be burning this season?
In the winter I love cinnamon candles! I love turning off all the lights, putting the Christmas tree lights on and burning a cinnamon candle, it makes the room so cosy!

6. What is it you love most about winter?
As I mentioned before, I love getting all cosy on the sofa with the Christmas lights on, a hot chocolate and a Christmas movie! Especially when its horrible and rainy outside, and I'm all warm inside!

7. Your favourite makeup look for winter?
I usually just stick with my natural looking makeup but add a bold lip, I don't really change my makeup look according to the season.

8. What are you most looking forward to this winter?
I'm really looking forward to spending Christmas with my mam, stepdad and brothers and sister as they live further down the country and I haven't spent a Christmas with them in about three years! I am so excited to go down and see them all as I haven't seen them since October!

I tag Chantelle from Girl In The Tartan Scarf and Rachael from The Rose Lifestyle and of course anyone else who wants to do it! :)

Mummy Wish List

Like any woman, I guess, I forever have a list as long as my arm of new things that I would like! However, now that we have a little one on the way our needs are pushed aside, and new things for the baby take priority. But it's still nice to browse and look at all the lovely things on offer! Here are my top wishlist picks at the minute :)

1. Maternity White Floral Pyjama Shorts; New Look £6.50
I just think that these look so pretty! And I love that they have the bump band attached as all my trousers and pyjamas now have to sit underneath my bump and not only is it cold, it can be quite uncomfortable too.

2. L'occitane Shea Butter Hand Cream; L'occitane £19
My hands get so chapped and dry in the winter! I always wash my hands a million times a day and with a combination of not drying them properly and using anti-bac gel they can get very dry and sore. This hand cream is amazing! And it smells gorgeous too. But at £19 a tube, its totally out of my price range for a hand cream.

3. Grey Zip Trim Block Heel Ankle Boots; River Island £38
I'm really in need of some new boots as I've had mine for about 2 years now and they're looking a little worse for wear. I love these ankle boots!

4. Strawberry Buttercream Yankee Candle; Yankee £16.99
I am obsessed with candles this winter, and especially yankee candles. I go into the shop just to sniff them all, never to buy! They're just so expensive. Definitely something that you'd buy to treat yourself, though.

5. Real Leather Jacket; River Island £100
Again, I am in desperate need of a new leather jacket as I've had mine for at least six years and it has definitely seen better days! I love the look of this one, however I would never spend £100 on a jacket but its always nice to dream.

6. Nars Sheer Glow Foundation; Nars £31
I really want to try this foundation as everyone raves on about how good it is! Maybe I will ask for it for my birthday or use some birthday money to treat myself.

I hope you've enjoyed my short wishlist, I'd love to see some of yours :)

Tuesday, 16 December 2014

Pregnancy | 27 Weeks

How far along? 27 weeks exactly!

Baby's size: He's about the size of a cucumber! 15 inches long and weighing in at 2.2 pounds.

Total weight gain: I haven't weighed myself this week.

Maternity clothes: I still need to get some more tops, all mine are ridiculously tight now. I wore a shirt top a couple of days ago and nearly fainted because it was so tight!

Best moment this week: Meeting up with some old school friends who have all recently had babies was really nice! I haven't seen any of them since school and it was lovely to catch up and talk all things baby related. It'll also be really nice to meet up when the baby is here and all our babies can play together :)

Miss anything? I'm really missing being able to get comfortable, still like last week. I'm finding it really difficult at the minute. I hate saying that I don't enjoy pregnancy because I feel so blessed to be having a baby but if I'm being honest, I don't think I'm cut out for pregnancy. I wouldn't change it for the world though, I will go through all the discomfort a million times just to get my baby!

Movement? I went into hospital on Saturday night as I hadn't felt him moving as much for a few days and when he did kick it wasn't as strong as what it had been so obviously I was getting nervous. The midwife was really lovely and she listened to his heartbeat and assured me it was nice and strong and not to worry. She explained that as he gets bigger his movements won't be as pronounced as he doesn't have as much room to stretch out as when he was younger. I feel much better about it now, but I'm glad that I went in to get checked.

Food cravings: I have at least two bowls of coco pops a day. I love them!

Anything making you queasy or sick? I've still been feeling nauseous a lot lately. I've heard that morning sickness can come back in the third trimester, but I really hope it doesn't!!

Gender: Boy.

Symptoms: Nausea, leg cramps, back ache, itchy stomach, dry skin.

Belly button in or out? Still in, for now.

Looking forward to: CHRISTMAS!!!

Other fun things to note: My husband and I have started thinking about wall paint colours for the nursery. We are going to start decorating after Christmas and I am so excited!! I think we are going to go and get some paint samples at the weekend, which will be lovely :)

Monday, 15 December 2014

My Top 5 Winter Polishes

Winter is the best time to paint your nails to bring a bit of colour to otherwise dull and horrible days! There's nothing better than taking the time out to sit down with a hot chocolate, heating on and painting your nails. I love a good pamper on a cold and wintery night. So here are my top 5 winter nail polish picks..

1. Barry M Red Glitter
2. Nails Inc Chesham Place
3. Barry M Christmas Glitter
4. OPI Big Apple Red
5. Barry M Bright Purple

What are your favourite go-to winter nail polishes?

Saturday, 13 December 2014

My Pregnancy So Far..

So I'm going to start doing weekly updates but since I am already 26 weeks I thought I would do a general overview of my pregnancy so far. I really wish I had started doing these right at the start but I got out of the habit of blogging, but anyways I'm back now! We found out on the 3rd October at a 3D scan when I was 16 weeks that we are having a gorgeous little boy! I knew all along that it was a boy, everyone else was saying girl but I just had a feeling. We are honestly so excited, and feel so blessed, we just can't wait to meet him.

How I Found Out I Was Pregnant:
I found out I was pregnant on the 7th July when I was 3 weeks and 6 days pregnant! I had a stock shift at work the next day and I knew there was a chance that I could be pregnant and I didn't want to be doing loads of heavy lifting so I decided to take a test. I totally was not expecting it to come up positive, I was just doing it more to reassure myself I was okay to do my stock shift! Well, I definitely did not end up doing that shift! I was so shocked/excited when it came up positive, there's seriously no other feeling like it. When you want something so bad and then its staring you right in the face, its just amazing. 
I had wanted to do something really special to tell my husband but when he came in from work I couldn't hold it in, so I just said 'I've got something to tell you' and straight away he went 'you're pregnant?!' It was so funny how he just guessed it straight away!! 

The First Trimester:
The first trimester for me was just awful! I was absolutely fine until i hit 6 weeks and the morning sickness just hit me full force. They honestly shouldn't even call it morning sickness, because I had it all day! And it was the worst in the evenings, literally I would eat my tea and then just go and throw it back up. To make things worse I got a kidney infection when I was 7 weeks and ended up collapsing at home because I didn't know I had one, so I was rushed to hospital in an ambulance for some IV antibiotics where I was kept in overnight. So scary!! 
The morning (all day) sickness peaked at 10 weeks and then as soon as I was 12 weeks it just vanished! It really was text book stuff. Although when I was 12 weeks I was on holiday at Center Parcs where my sister and I picked up a vomiting bug, so just as I was getting over my morning sickness, I started vomiting for another reason. Yup, I've definitely been in the wars this pregnancy!
Another symptom I struggled with in the first trimester was the tiredness! My goodness, they tell you you're going to be tired but you don't expect just how tired you really are going to be! I was in bed every night by 8pm and most days I would have a nap during the day. I was just drained off all energy and I seriously could sleep all day if it was acceptable! 

The Second Trimester:
To be honest, the second trimester has flown over! Every week I can't believe how far along I am. I like it though because I'm desperate to meet my little man even though everyone tells me to enjoy my peace while I've still got it! 
The only symptom I have really struggled with in the second trimester is hip and back pain. My goodness, it is agony! If I could live in the bath I seriously would because its the only time I get relief from the aches and pains. I am booked in for physiotherapy on the 30th December because its just unbearable. I can't even walk long distances anymore because my hips and back hurt that much! I haven't been diagnosed but I am sure it must be SPD or pelvic girdle pain. 
I started feeling little man kicking at around 16 weeks, but it turned into proper thumps and rolls at around 22 weeks. Its gorgeous just feeling him wiggle about in there, its my favourite thing in the world! I love just to watch my tummy moving from side to side!

26 Weeks Pregnant:
So currently I am 26 weeks pregnant so I will do a little weekly update for you now :) 

How far along?  26 weeks and 4 days.
Baby’s size: According to the What to Expect App baby is the size of an Eggplant. Yup, I have no idea what one of those is either! But he is 9.2 inches long and should be weighing in at around 2lbs!!
Total weight gain: I haven't been keeping track of my weight, however I did weigh myself around 2 weeks ago and I had gained 13lbs, not really sure if that's good or bad but I'm not too worried about it.
Maternity clothes?  Sometimes if I want to wear some jeans I will wear my maternity ones but mostly I've just been living in leggings or pyjama bottoms with a long vest on. I do think that I will need to purchase some new vests a few sizes bigger however, as the ones I have now are starting to get stretched beyond their means!
Best moment this week:  Feeling my little boy doing kicks and rolls in my tummy everyday and knowing that he's doing okay in there!
Miss Anything?  Being able to get comfortable in bed! ARGH its a nightmare trying to get into a comfortable position at night, everything huuuurts!
Movement:  Yes, all day every day! I don't think this little boy ever sleeps!
Food cravings:  Chocolate! I made my husband open his huge bar of galaxy I had all wrapped up for him for Christmas so that we could eat it. What baby wants, baby gets!
Anything making you queasy or sick: I have been feeling quite nauseous a lot this week but I'm on antibiotics for a water infection (again) so I think its probably just that.
Gender:  Boy.
Symptoms:  Occasional nausea; slight insomnia; weird dreams; extremely emotional!
Belly Button in or out?  This is a weird question but we'll just roll with it! Its in for now, although it is starting to make its way out (gross!)
Looking forward to:  Going down to see my mam next week for Christmas! Ahhhhh, I seriously can't wait for her to feel her little grandson kicking :) 
Other Fun Things to Note: I've started trying to get out every day for a short walk as I've read that staying active can make your labour easier, also I'm hoping that it helps with my sore hips and back if I'm keeping more active. I'm just hoping that the snow holds off because its not going to be much fun walking around in the freezing snow and risking slipping over! That would not be fun at all.

Thursday, 11 December 2014

Life Update..

I'm back! Some of you may have noticed that I haven't been blogging for a couple of months and the reason for that is.............. I'M PREGNANT! Woooooo! So let's start from the beginning..

I found out I was pregnant on 7th July when I was 4 weeks gone. The first few weeks weren't too bad until the morning sickness and fatigue kicked in and it was just awful! That's probably the main reason I stopped blogging because I was just so ill, and then I just seemed to get out of the habit of doing it. But since then I have left my job so I can just stay at home and look after myself until this baby comes along. So now I have a lot more time on my hands I can start getting back into blogging because I have really missed it! 

Other than that, I haven't really been up to much at all! I've really just been trying to get everything sorted for the baby coming and of course Christmas shopping. So from now on, on my blog you're going to start seeing a lot of baby related posts. I hope you all don't mind, but I'm just SOOOO excited! 

I hope all you lovely people have been alright in my absence, and I'm looking forward to being back :)

Saturday, 21 June 2014

Recipe | First attempt at Macarons

Okay, so can I just say that I am well aware that these do not look anything at all like Macarons! And they do not taste like them either, haha. But for a first attempt I guess they're okay. I will definitely work on it, and next time I will use a proper Macaron mould as this time I just did it freehand and it didn't work. Also, I didn't use ground almonds because I didn't have any so that's probably why they taste like a meringue more than Macarons. But in any case I thought I would share the recipe with you anyways so you can give them a try! :) I was under the impression that Macarons were really really difficult to make but I found this recipe really quick and simple, even though they didn't turn out to look the way they should, I blame that on the lack of a mould! 

4 egg whites
70g castor sugar
120g icing sugar, sifted
chocolate spread

1. Whisk together the egg whites and castor sugar until stiff. You should be able to hold your bowl upside down and the mixture shouldn't move. Go on hold it over your head, I dare you!
2. Add any desired food colouring paste. I used pink but definitely not enough as it didn't show up at all once cooked.
3. Gently fold in the icing sugar. 
4. Pour the mixture into a piping bag or ziplock bag with the corner cut out and pipe circles onto none stick baking paper.
5. Bake at 150 degrees celcius for approximately 20 minutes until the Macarons feel firm and are slightly risen.
6. Leave to cool on the paper and then carefully peel off.
7. Pair similar sized Macarons and add your filling, I used chocolate spread but you can really use anything you like :)

I hope you try this recipe out and enjoy it! I would definitely recommend getting the Macaron mould though, as you can see it didn't work too well for me without one!


Thursday, 19 June 2014

Tuesday, 17 June 2014

Cheeky Little Purchase

So I definitely needed some new foundation as I used the last of my Rimmel Wake Me Up foundation and all the other foundations I have seem to be too orange for my face. I have read a lot about the Bourjois Healthy Mix foundation. I had read that it is really moisturising for dry skin, and that's definitely what I need. I used it this morning and so far I am extremely impressed with it. I know you can't really get a good idea about something from just one use but I just found that it made my skin look really fresh and hydrated and it stayed on really nicely all day. Also, I find it difficult to find a foundation that is the right colour for my skin and this one seems to be the perfect shade for me. Even my husband mentioned this morning that my makeup looks really natural today 'well done' he said, haha! So all in all first impressions of this foundation are good!

In Boots at the minute they have 2 for £14 across all Bourjois cosmetics so really why wouldn't I get something else when the foundation was £9.99 on its own so I'd only be paying an extra £4.01 for something worth far more! I really didn't need this bronzer as my Dior one does the job just nicely, however its shaped like a bar of chocolate, it smells like chocolate and to be quite honest I couldn't resist. I have read mixed reviews on this product and I have only used it once. I liked the way it went on but I think I need a little longer to judge how I get on with it, so I shall be sure to let you all know!

So that's it for my cheeky little relevant/none relevant purchase, let me know what you all have been buying :)

Monday, 16 June 2014

Recipe | Zesty Lemon Cupcakes

Hi guys! Surprise surprise I have been baking again! Today I have made some yummy zesty lemon cupcakes. I was browsing through Zoella's YouTube videos and came across this one that she did for Mums Eye View and thought that I would give it a go. The recipe is actually an Asda one, so really easy to follow and very simple. You should all give this recipe a go, because its so simple and so tasty none of you have an excuse not to! 

What you will need:
125g self raising flour
1 level tsp baking powder
125g butter, softened
125g castor sugar
2 large free-range eggs
226g icing sugar
1 unwaxed lemon (I used Jif lemon juice)

1. Preheat the oven to 180C/160C Fan/Gas 4. Line a 12-hole bun tray with cupcake cases (not fairy cake or muffin cases). Sift the flour and baking powder together into a large bowl. It's important to measure the baking powder accurately – use a measuring spoon and run your finger across the top to ensure that it's level.
2. Make sure the butter is soft (a bit like mayonnaise) but not melted. Add the butter, sugar and eggs to the flour.
3. Add the finely grated zest of an unwaxed lemon and beat with a wooden spoon until well mixed (I used an electric whisk as I don't have substantial muscles to stand and beat it!). Scrape the sides of the bowl with a spatula and beat again for 1 minute.
4. Put the mixture in the paper cases, making sure they're all about the same size. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until the tops spring back when lightly pressed. Cool on a wire rack.
5. Make the glace icing by sifting 225g icing sugar into a bowl and add 6 tsp lemon juice. Stir and add another 1-2 tsp lemon juice, a few drops at a time, until you have an icing that will coat the tops of the cupcakes. Use a spoon to add the icing to the cupcakes.
6. Decorate with finely shredded lemon zest. (I used other fun stuff to decorate)

Can we please just take a moment to appreciate how cute these cupcake stands are!!
Handy tip: I found that the icing was a bit too solid to spread over my cupcakes so if you wet a knife and use that to spread the icing over the cupcake it softens the icing and makes it much easier!

Thursday, 12 June 2014

Theology Thursday..


Double Trouble | Recipes

And by double trouble, I mean double trouble for my hips! I've been baking again and I never think of the effects it has on my waistline I just love baking! I've made a three tier chocolate cake (PHWOAR!) and what were supposed to be cookies but look more like big blobs of chocolate (or more like something naughty a dog does). Maybe I will leave it for other people to eat.....maybe! 
As always, I thought I would share the recipes with you so you can give them a go if you like :) 

Chocolate Cake

For the sponge:
225g self-raising flour, sifted
225g margarine, softened
225g castor sugar
55g cocoa powder
4 large eggs
55ml whole milk (I'm a rebel and used semi-skimmed)
a pinch of salt

For the icing:
350g unsalted butter
250g icing sugar
200g good-quality dark chocolate, chopped (I used cocoa powder)
1 tsp vanilla essence

1. Preheat the oven to 170 degrees Celsius (150 for fan oven). Grease and line three 7" cake tins with greaseproof paper. Prepare and measure all the ingredients.
2. Combine all the ingredients for the sponge and beat together for 2-3 minutes until smooth.
3. Divide the batter evenly between the 3 tins and bake for 20 minutes until risen. Remove from the oven and let the sponges cool in their tins for 10 minutes. 
4. Turn out onto wire racks to finish cooling; peel away any paper that is stuck to their bases.
5. Melt the icing chocolate in a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water. Stir occasionally until melted, then remove from the heat and let it cool for 10 minutes.
6. Beat the ingredients for the icing in a bowl until fluffy. Add the chocolate and stir until smooth. Place one sponge on a plate and spread a third of the icing on top. Sandwich the second sponge on top and spread the top with half the remaining icing. Sit the final sponge on top and spread the remaining icing on top.
I then decorated mine with heart haribos and because I had baked this cake for my husband I used fondant balls to write I Love You because I do love my husband :) 


Cookies (Lumps of chocolate)

110g plain flour, sifted
75g unsalted butter, chilled
55g icing sugar
55g cocoa powder, sifted
110g dark chocolate chips (Asda was sold out so I used chocolate buttons)
1 large egg
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp salt

1. Measure and prepare all of the ingredients. Combine together the icing sugar, cocoa powder, flour and salt in a large mixing bowl.
2. Rub the butter into this mixture until it resembles fine breadcrumbs. 
3. Add the egg, dark chocolate chips and vanilla extract and mix until a stiff dough forms.
4. Gather up and roll into a sausage shape with a diameter of 8-10cm. Wrap in greaseproof paper and chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes. (I completely missed out this step so maybe that's why my cookies didn't really work haha)
5. Grease and line 2 trays with greaseproof paper. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius (160 for fan oven). Use a cutter to cut out 1cm thick cookies from the dough. Arrange on the trays and bake for 12-14 minutes. Remove and allow to cool for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool further. 
Blogger Template Created by pipdig