Saturday, October 10, 2015

BLACKPOOL ILLUMINATIONS


Blackpool Illuminations, for those not so Northern who may not know, are an annual selection of lights which are hung and lit up every Autumn in Blackpool along the seaside. When I was a child my parents didn't really do holidays abroad, they were more of the caravanning/camping type. I have a lot of childhood memories in that tacky ol' town of Blackpool. Every year for several years me and my parents and my sister would drive down to Blackpool for a few nights in October just to see the illuminations as it seemed to become a bit of a tradition. However, it has been way more than a decade since I last went, and now I'm living just 45 minutes away, me and my boyfriend decided to go on a little spontaneous drive down to see them the other night. We set off around 6pm so that by the time we got there is was just about dusk. We parked up near the seafront and walked down to the pier and by the time we got there they all pinged on and a small cheer of passers by. Unfotuantely, Blackpool isnt known as the most prettiest of seaside towns (it is certainly no Brighton!) but there is just something about it that us Northerners secretly love about it. The old school tackiness is extremely notstalgic. Going back after such a long time, and it being me driving the car this time rather than sitting in the back in a booster seat was really quite strange. I cannot help but get that song by Simply Red stuck in my head everytime I'm there (it's called Fairground and the whole music video features him in Blackpool during the Illuminations). It was lovely though, the radio was even playing 90s dance hits which were big at the time when I was there last, which was even more weird, it was like some sort of time machine!

There was something somewhat comforting about being there that night, because I sort of felt more at home since I had so many memories from there, although I wasn't with my family and I was in fact miles away from my home town. Everybody has those places that hold so many memories and it is always nice visting them every once in a while. Now that I've got my own transport I'm hoping we can go on little mini road trips a little more often when we get the time, to where, I have no idea, but it's nice to know that I can when we want to!

- Alison xx

Thursday, October 08, 2015

OOTD 08/10/2015


This is definitely my favourite outfit at the moment. I pretty much have worn it at least once or twice a week.

The jacket if from Topshop and I was umm'ing and aah'ing about it for a good week or two as it was around £50 and I am trying to save money. But then all f a sudden, I just couldnt resist any more and I did a bit of an impulse buy, and I definitely do not regret it. The fur on the collar is detatchable and for the first few weeks I had it I took it off as it was still not quite autumn weather. However, now its a bit cooler I decided to put it back on. See, already its two jackets in one! It's also better than any other faux leather jacket I have ever owned as it actually keeps you warm. The lining is really good quality in this, which you defintinely do not get in the £25/£30 H&M leather jackets which I bought last year.

The dress is from New Look and did not break the bank at all, I have a feeling it was around the £20 mark. I love the maroon with a slight hint of mustard, its very on an autumn trend. It is also a really flattering shape for me! Since it is quite nicely fitted I can also get away with wearing it for work as it is a good length and doesnt have a revealing cleavage neckline.

I bought the boots from New Look the same time as I ordered the dress. I have 3 pairs of brown ankle boots however, I am yet to own a black pair so I felt as though that was enough to justify buying them. They are so comfy and always my go to work shoes, especially on colder and wetter days.

Hope you enjoyed this ootd, I know it has been a while! I'm tyring to build up a more workwear friendly waredrobe, which isnt too tailoired as I do want to enjoy wearing these peices outside of work too. I do like really clean cut and tailored work wear however, I just feel I can get a lot more use out of slightly more casual peices and I wonts assocaiate them with going to work so much. I always hated wearing something on a weekend which I wore all of the time for work, it was almost like it was tainted! Hence why I want to make sure the majority of clothing peices I buy now are more smart casual and can be worn to work and also out doing the grocery shopping on a weekend.

I do need to slwoly build up my autumn winter waredrobe so hopefully there may be a few more of these in the pipline! Thanks for reading!

- Alison xx


Wednesday, October 07, 2015

COME AT ME AUTUMN


I'm still not posting as frequently as I hoped, but at least I'm still popping back every now and then! I'm just taking my time getting back into the swing of blogging...yet again...

This is just another update post, so no exciting outfits or products I'm afraid, although I do have a day off work tomorrow so I may get the chance to post something a litle more exciting!

I'm really going to make an effort to post a little more, even if they are just diary style enrties, as it is finally my favourite time of year! I love everything about Autumn/Winter, the TV, the fashion, the warm hearty food, the darker evenings, berry lipsticks, christmas scented candles and everything else in between.This flat is so cosy and my favourite past time recently has been getting under a blanket on the sofa and binge watching Netflix (although that is the GBBO final on the tv there, oh hey mr hollywood!). I hate the dark mornings as it makes getting out of bed so much harder, but I love it getting dark at 5pm and getting all snuggled up in a onesie and a cup of tea.

You can't see it here but behind my TV above the candles I have already hung my Happy Halloween bunting! I can't wait to buy and carve a pumpkin too! We are planning on going to my sisters for a halloween get togethert this year and I have already bought my costume! I hve also started christmas shopping, I may have only bought one thing, but its a start, determined to be suuuuper organised this year!

I do have some more interesting posts in the pipeline, its just hard finding the time to do them now I'm working full time, but as I said early, I'm making it my mission!

I hope you're all enjoying the change of season, and in particualr the final of Great British Bake Off , which I am currently watching as I type. Hopefully I'll be checking in again soon!

- Alison xx

Sunday, August 09, 2015

MEET JEEVES AND COLIN

Left: Jeeves Right:Colin







I thought since I need to do a bit of catching up on this blog, the first thing I should address is our new addtions to the family, our two little guineas!

I have always wanted a dog of my own ever since I flew the nest of my parents house, however, me and Paul work full time and have only ever lived in flat which would just be infair for the doggy. As a way to take my mind off not aving a dog for a while, I decided to invest in some flat/ full time working, friendly pets, so I got two guineas! Paul was such an enabler with this too. I was sat at work and our systems were down so I ended up googling guinea pigs on my phone, then that night I explained to Paul and he said, "Well lets jsut go get some then..." and that night, we went to Pets At Home, and I came home with Jeeves and Colin!

Since then, they have become the most pampered piggies ever, and their home alone is like a piggy mansion! haha. I love them so much and it is so cute seeing their two different personalities shine htrogh. They can be a little high maintenence i will admit. I have to get up that little bit earlier ever morning to sweep out their cage and feed them, as well as again as soon as I get home, and allocating some piggy floor time and cuddle time every evening. However, they are a lot less maintenence than a dog and a nice introduction to owning a pet. I have chosen to keep them on fleece bedding as you can see in the pictures, rather than wood shavings, as it is so much easier to clean out and maintain, plus they do tend to kick sawdust out of the cage and it would get all over the carpet everyday!

They are still young and can be very excitable which is so cute. They dont tend to enjoy getting their nails clipped but they surprisingly do not mind having a bath! They also come in handy for my garden as I can just pick out all the dandelion leave and give them to them!

I hope you enjoyed meeting my little piggies, I'll be back again soon to give you a few more updates on what has happened in my life since I last blogged a few months ago.

Let me know if you have any pets and any pictures of them, I'm such an animal person and I'd love to see them!

Alison xx

Sunday, July 26, 2015

HELLO STRANGER...

Long time no see ey?!

I vowed that the last time I restarted this blog that I would keep up with it, and I was doing so well! Unfortunately, third year university work and life in general completley got in the way, and a lot has changed!

So the ast few months in a nutshell, consited of the following...I have now graduated university with a BA Hons in Graphic Design, however, I am working full time in the accounts department of an estate agency in Manchester, not at all what I expected! Its not something I'm hopefully going to be doing long term as ,not only have I graduated and bagged a full time job, but I also moved 20 miles away from my little flat in Salford to Wigan! Therefore, my commute to work is a little ridiculous considering my salary, however, money is like gold dust to recent gradutes who aren't lucky enough to walk straight into their dream job!

So, now things are settling down a tad, I've established a routine, we're not living out of boxes, and I no longer have the constant worry of uni work in the back of my mind, I thought I best get back on the horse with my blog and YouTube! So this is just a bit of a comeback post. Obviously theres a lot more to catch up on, but we'll get onto that in other posts!

I thought I'd come back with a teeeeny tiiiny haul, as today I explored our nearby retail park for the first time and bought a few essentials from boots. The two lipsticks I picked up are the Kate Moss for Rimmel matte lipsticks. I needed to re-purchase the 107, wine sorta shade as it is my favourite lipstick ever and I managed to lose mine. Rimmel also had a buy one, get a second half price deal on therefore I couldn't resist getting another. I decided to pick up this mid-tone pink shade as I don't really hve anything like it and I thought I may as well get something I wouldn't normally buy since it was on offer! I also picked up this pen tip liquid liner from Maybelline, just to have a trail run. I've heard nothing about it but it seemed reasonably priced and the swatch was a very black black, if you know what I mean. I've only ever used gel liner with a liner brush so I think this is going to take a bit of getting used to, but I'll report back with my thoughts!

And my final purchases were just Nivea moisturiser, because it is amazing and supe cheap, and some essential deoderant. Not the most exciting purchases but I thought I'd share since I'm getting back in the swing of things...again...

Anyways, I promise to try my best to be consistent with the blog posts again, but for now, I am going to love you and leave you and lounge on the sofa under a blanket, with my candles lit and play some Sims 4...Night night!

Alison x

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Empties #1


So I thought I'd hop on the empties bandwagon. I'm not someone who goes through masses of stuff every month, cause quite frankly I'm a student and can't afford to buy masses of stuff to get through! So, I thought I would keep a hold of some of the products I've finished since quite a few things seemed to empty at the same time, and I'll just do these when that sorta thing happens again.



LANCOME HYPNOSE MASCARA
I looooved this mascara. I bought it in a set during the Boots boxing day/January sales as I'd heard a lot about it and noticed Sunbeams Jess wearing it in her YouTube videos and her lashes just looked amazing. I'm quite sad to see it go, however the set did come with 3 other Lancome mascara minis so I'm moving onto those now. Although I really loved this mascara, it's defintiely not something I would repurchase time and time again as I feel you can almost get the same effect from many different drugstore mascaras, my favourite being the Maybelline Rocket Volume. However, if I feel like treating myself again or see it on offer I will no doubt pick it up again!

RIMMEL MATCH PERFECTION FOUNDATION
I think this may be the third bottle I've gotten through, or maybe fourth. I do really love this foundation, it's the only rimmel one I've been able to get along with. Its definitley a medium to high coverage which is quite good for me because if I'm at uni or work I don't really have a chance to top up my makeup so low maintainence is best. I find toward the end of the day it clings to dry patches and gets pretty patchy in general, however that may be due to me not wearing a primer, which is something I'm going to try out next. I'm currently using L'Oreal True Match and I don't think I like it as much as this Rimmel due to the lack of staying power, so I'll most likely go back to Rimmel next, or perhaps Bourjois or Revlon....

RIMMEL WAKE ME UP CONCEALER
I quite enjoyed using this concealer, it seemed to last forever! In fact I can probably still get a couple more uses out of this, it seems like its bottomless! I don't love the coverage as much as the Collection concealer everyone loves, however the brightening effect under my eyes and on top of the cheekbones is lovely and I may have to go pick another of these up soon!


BATISTE DRY SHAMPOO
I've lost count how many of these I've gone through, I normally go for the Blush scent, however I've really been drawn to the tropical recently. Brilliant dry shampoo, does what it says on the tin and the large size means it lasts quite a while. However, I may have found a new favourite...popped into Tesco today to restock and instead picked up two Pantene dry shampoos as they were on offer. I tried one when I got back and instantly loved it, so we'll see how they go and if they continue to impress me you'll definitely be hearing about it! Plus they smell amazing...

THE BODY SHOP SHEA BODY BUTTER
This is my all time favourite body butter scent from the Body Shop and I got this a good year ago. They seem to last forever, especially if you have a few different butters or moisturisers on the go. I'll definitely be repurchasing this, though I currently have the satsuma one on the go, but once I've worked through that I may have to pick this one up again. Its a lot thicker than some of the other scents, including the satsuma which has a totally different consistency, therefore it seems to work wonders on my feet, elbows and knees, a definite must have for the colder seasons!

THE BODY SHOP CAMOMILE CLEANSING OIL
I picked this up after hearing a lot about cleansing oils and that this one was one of the best for it's price. I did enjoy using it, though I did find the bottle a bit messy. Although it was a nice cleanser and took my makeup off successfully, I'm not sure it did anything drastic to my skin. I may repurchase, but I tend to try different cleansers, based on which catches my eye, however I think this was a good one for over winter especially for dry skin.

THE BODY SHOP VITAMIN E NIGHT CREAM
And last but not least, another body shop item. I loved this night cream, lovely and thick and made my skin feel lovely and soft. Again, same as cleansers, I tend not to stick to just one moisturiser all of the time so I will probably try some others, but if I happen to be in or around the body shop when my current one is about to run out I'll probably pick this up again!

There we have it! Sorry if this was quite rambly, but I quite enjoyed looking back on the products and made me think about whether they're definitely worth their price tag after using.

Let me know if you've tried any of these or have any good alternatives!

Alison xx

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

OOTD

Top: H&M
Jeans: TopShop Joni Tall
Bracelets: Here there and everywhere!
Nails: Super old yellow from Primark a few years ago...

I've been a bit MIA recently, I do apologise. The main reason I've been lacking on the blogging front is because I took the plunge and decided to buy my first car! After a lot of um'ing and ah'ing I thought I'd play it safe and get an old banger, one that I wouldn't mind bumping just to get used to driving again and just for my first year or so on the road, then once we move somewhere nicer, I'll get myself a nicer car, cause trust me, people drive like loonies in Salford, so theres a chance either me or someone else will bump the car!

I've also had an awful lot of uni work to do, I know, broken record! But today I actually handed in my dissertation! Once step closer to graduating! I've got sooo much to do after getting some feedback at a seminar for my project and I'm just getting so bored of looking at it!

I also decided I'd try my hand at some weekly vlogging today! I was meant to start yesterday, with it being Monday and all, and then I totally forgot, and by the time I remembered there was little to no point starting since I was just chilling out on the sofa all night. So, we'll see how this week goes, as I say, a lot of my time is spent doing uni work so I'm not sure how interesting it will be, but tonight to celebrate the end of my dissertaion me and the other half are celebrating with a mexican night and drinks! woo!

Hopefully, I'll be able to get myself back into a blogging rountine and not procratsinate too much!

Alison xx


Wednesday, March 04, 2015

NIGHT TIME ROUTINE



I've had a slightly hectic past few days and getting a little bit stressed, and my favoruite way to chill out at the end off the day is to just take my makeup off, have a long hot bath/shower, moisturise and just lie in bed watching tv and youtube. So I thought I'd share my night time routine as I have switched it up very slightly.

First up is the Garnier Micellar Water, which I now use to take off the majority of my makeup. I used to use face wipes to do this and up until now I've never done anything different. However, since it's winter my skin hasn't been it's best so I thought I do a little experiment and see what the results of completely cutting out face wipes does. So far, I'm really loving this makeup remover, it's hardly gone down and I've been using it everyday since I got it and it feels so gentle on the skin.

I then go in with my cleanser. This No7 cleanser is one I have always gone back to. I've tried others, the last one I was using was the Body Shop Camomile Cleansing Oil, which I did enjoy, but I still went back to this one. It takes off the excess makeup and makes my skin feel great.

Next is the Neutrogena Pink Grapefruit Facial Scrub. I dont use this everyday, as it suggests, just every few days or when my skin is looking extra dull and dry. I've had this for ages and still nowhere near finished. It;s nothing amazing, just a facial scrub, but it's very affordable and great on my skin.

For my night time moisturiser I just recently purchased the Boots Botanics All Bright night moisturiser. It's a light lilac colour which surpised me, but of course rubs in to clear. So far I've been quite enjoying it, lovely and thick to combat my dry patches.

And finally, I finish off with the Body Shop eye cream. I won't lie, I jsut use this because everybody seems to say eye cream is very important. I've not noticed a massive difference, but I still use it in the hope it'll keep my eyes looking wonderfully youthful as I age haha!

And that is my evening skincare routine!
Let me know if you have any holy grail recommendations for dry/normal skin!

Alison xx

Sunday, March 01, 2015

SUNDAY SUMMARY


So this week has not been all that much different from last. I've had a huuuge amount of university work to get done, and unfortunately I'm going to be saying that until May/June time. I had a meeting at uni for feedback and they basically said they liked my idea, but change it all together, so now I have to totally re-do it, and I only have another week to get my first draft of the publication complete. Just a little stressed at the moment....


In order to combat the stress and try not to stuff my face in pizza and chocolate for comfort, I've been trying to eat a little healthier, starting with my new love for smoothies since I bought the Blend Active last week. I've gotten into a routine of getting up and making a smoothie right away, and it's a lovely way to start the day, much preferring it to a cup of tea or coffee! Plus, you can be so experimental with them and make such amazing different recipes. Also, the avocado and poached eggs on toast was what I made for brunch on friday, it was absolutely delicious! I'd seen loads of people having it for their breakfast on instagram and such, and thought it wouldn't be all that great tasting, but I thought, what the heck, and tried it, I really enjoyed it too. However, I did over poach my eggs sligtly, but it was my first time poaching an egg so I let myself off!


The typography is just something I've been working on as a side project of my main final uni project. I'm supposed to be doing a peice of typography a day, however that sometimes doesnt happen due to lack of motivation or I just can't think of anything to write. I've been quite enjoying it though, I usually do them when sat on the sofa before bed watching Charmed on Netflix, haha! The two above are the only two I have gotten round to digitalising so far, however I've got over half of a sketchbook full already, and I'm pretty pleased with how they've turned out! Even if you're not into graphic design theres something quite theraputic about just writing down a word of phrase from your day, then you can frame it and put it somewhere in your home. I'm hoping to get a couple of these printed and put up in my flat, or even selling them on etsy!

Another uneventful week, but unfortunately I've just not got the time to do anything other than work at my laptop all day or go to uni.

Can't wait for my education to be over, finally! Haha!

Alison xx

Friday, February 27, 2015

UNIVERSITY OOTD


 Jumper: Topshop
Shirt: Hollister, years ago! 
Jeans: Topshop Joni Tall
Rings: Accessorise, Pandora

Todays very casual, comfy and layered outfit of the day for university. Love this kind of layering because it looks like I've put a lot more effort getting ready in the morning, when really all I've done is grab a shirt and a jumper and shoved them on for warmth, because it's still freezing! Where are you Spring/Summer?! I do like how there has been a bit of sunshine the past couple of days though, although it's still baltic, the sunshine just lifts my mood straight away!

Also tried out the L'oreal Match Perfection foundation teamed with the Real Techniques makeup sponge and on first application I was very much impressed! We'll see how well it lasts throughout the day then I may perhaps do a little review, because so far I'm loving it!

Hope you're having a lovely Friday!

Alison xx

Thursday, February 26, 2015

MINI LUNCHTIME HAUL






So today I popped into town after university to pick up the L'oreal Match Perfection foundation as I really wanted a change, and the Real Techniques makeup sponge. because I'd heard a lot of good things about it. Turns out I ended up coming home with a lot more than I intended on buying...
I picked up this Revlon blush as I could do with a new blush and this is just a shade pinker than my favourite blush by Mac, Gingerly, so I thought I'd give it a try for the Summer months. I also picked up Revlon Vixen as a repurchase because it's my favourite nail varnish, like ever.

I had a quick pop into Primark because it was pretty empty at that time of day and I can never bear it when it's busy. I didn;t have a proper look becuase I didn't aim to spend too much, and I needed to get home and do some work. While speedily walking around I managed to pick up two lovely sets of underwear, a Vanilla and Coconut candle (mainly because I thought the pot would be good for storing makeup brushes) a new makeup bag, a brown shoulder bag and a lovely striped top. Oh, I also grabbed one of the matte lipsticks in this very Taylor Swift-esque red! Quite the steal for £1.50 I thought!

So yeah, more impulse, buys, whups! Have you found any lovely bits in Primark recently?

Alison xx

Sunday, February 22, 2015

SUNDAY SUMMARY


The weeks are going scarily quickly this year, it's so strange, I seem to blink and another is over!
I started off the week getting stuck back into uni and catching up on work I missed out on from being ill. The mirror picture is me posing as much as I could for a snapchat in the giant floor to ceiling mirrors in the ladies at my uni campus at Media City, I couldn't resist, those mirror are amazing!
This week also brought pancake day! I looove American pancakes and shared my favorite recipe earlier this week. Although I didn't go all out and have a million different flavours, which I would love to have done, I still thoroughly enjoyed my maple syrup drenched pancakes. I've been induldging perhaps a little too much this week food wise and it's made me feel pretty 'bleurgh', that's the only way to describe it.


However, after some impulse purchases this week I'm planning on detoxing a little and cramming as much fruit and veg into me via smoothies from my new Breville Blend Active smoothie maker! I love it so much, and I'm very much looking forward to trying lot's of healthy recipes next week!

Another impulse buy of the week was The Sims 4 as it finally became available on Mac! I've always loved The Sims and I knew fine well it was a terrible idea to buy it with so many deadlines looming, but I couldn't resist, and I gotta admit, I've been loving it! Other purchases recently included a new outfit from ASOS (shown in this blogpost) and some new frames and a clock for our 'feature wall' in the flat which you can see above. We're slowly but surely filling the wall with both purchased prints and ones we've made ourselves :D

Anyhow, here's to another productive, more healthy and active week next week!

Alison xx

Friday, February 20, 2015

IMPULSE BUYS




 
Today consisted of a quick presentation at university and some impulse buys!
I made a small order on ASOS the other day which also came so I thought I may as well photograph those too.

The top was from Vera Moda and the trousers are New Look Tall. I've been wanting to try some patterned trousers for some time now and I finally took the plunge as I'm deperate for the warm weather to return. I thought I'd ease myself in with these as the pattern isn't too out there and due to the darker colours I think they are quite a nice 'transitional piece' and I can get away with wearing them now as well as more in the summer/autumn time. I absolutely love them and I feel I may be becoming more adventourous and may even buy more in summer, who knows! The top as well is pretty summery but I thought it would go really nicely with the trousers. The fabrics of both are really soft and its a lovely flowly outfit for the warmer months, when you don't want anything restricting and tight when its bloody boiling! I know I'm getting way ahead of myself thinking of summer already but I can't resist, as soon as christmas is over I want it to be warm again!

I've also discovered this Zara bag which I have my eye on and may have to purchase after a pay day or two, cause I really need to start saving! I love it. At first I thought it may be a little too much tassle, but I think I should just be a little adventrous and try to rock it! haha.

So on my way home from uni today I popped into tesco to buy some food for tea tonight and ended up coming out with a Breville Blend Active and a Bobble water bottle as well. I've wanted a smoothie maker for a while, since the Nutri Bullet became all the rage. However, I definitely do not have £100 to spend. The Blend Active is only £30, comes with two bottles, one for me and the other half, and seems to be just as good! I've only had the one smoothie with it so far since I got in but I think it's gonna be a big hit, especially over summer!

The bobble water bottle is also something I've wanted for a while as I'm normally re-using shop bought water bottles and I've heard all the horror stories of the plastic etc etc. This was £10 and the filter re-fills are £5 from Tesco. Considering how much water I drink I just thought it would be an investment, plus it saves me getting up every two minutes to fill my water bottle as its 1L!

Have you guys treated yourselves to any impluse purhcases recently?

Alison xx

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

BEST AMERICAN PANCAKE RECIPE



Personally, the american style pancakes are my favourite, and my all time favourite topping has to be crispy bacon and maple syrup! If you've never tried it and think it sounds disgusting, trust me, don't knock it til you've tried it, its an amazing combination!

In order to make these kinds of pancakes you will need:
  • 135g of plain flour
  • 1teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1/2 a teaspoon of salt
  • 2 table spoons of caster sugar
  • 130ml of milk
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • Maple syrup
  • 2 rashers of bacon 
Place your bacon into a pan or grill to begin cooking so it has plenty time to get nice and crispy if you like it that way.

Then, sift your flour into a bowl, and add your baking powder, salt and caster sugar.

In a measuring jug, measure out your milk and whisk in your egg, before adding to your flour mixture.

Using a whisk or fork, mix together the whole mixture until there are no lumps.

Add your olive oil to a non-stick pan on a medium-high heat. When the pan is warm, begin to add your first pancake. It will seem really thick at first but thats the secret to a really delicious american style pancake!

When complete add your favorite toppings and enjoy! I've also found adding strawberries to this recipie is also really delicious and another contrasting flavour, however, unfortunatley I didn't have any in the house today.

However you like your pancakes, I hope you're having a wonderful pancake day!

Alison xx