Monday, 20 November 2017

Christmas Movie Night Gift Guide | Children's Edition with Universal Pictures

{image source: tumblr}

One of my favourite Christmas traditions my parents always did was on Christmas Eve - something that has now become really popular is known as the 'Christmas Eve box'.  Same principle, but my parents did it in a slightly different way (by basically telling my brother and I we could each open a gift from under the Christmas tree early, then telling us exactly which gift it had to be!).  The gift was always some cosy new pyjamas and a festive film to watch and it's something I've never forgotten and a tradition I plan to carry on with my little girl. 

There's nothing better (and more affordable) than settling down with a bowl of popcorn and a DVD during the Christmas period and these new children's titles are my picks for kids this year.  So if you're looking for stocking fillers for the younger members of your family - look no further.  My nieces will be thrilled to open these on Christmas morning or as a pre-Christmas movie night treat.



Mariah Carey's 'All I Want For Christmas Is You'

Mariah Carey's All I Want For Christmas is You, a fun and heartwarming holiday story brought to life in beautifully realized CGI animation.  Based on one of the best-selling and most beloved Christmas songs of all time and the children's book it inspired.

One of the top selling female music artists in history, Mariah Carey also narrates and produces the film, which shares one of her most treasured holiday wishes. "I am thrilled to be able to bring the story of the song to new generations of families", said the global superstar.

Available on DVD from 13th November - buy here

Despicable Me 3

When Gru and his new wife Lucy are unable to take down the latest villain to threaten humanity (an 80's-obsessed former child TV star named Balthazar Bratt) they are kicked out of the Anti-Villain League and humiliated.  The Minions hope Gru will use this opportunity to return to a life of crime but, when Gru makes it clear that he's retired from all that, the Minions quit and head out on their own.

Out on BluRay and DVD now - buy here

Trolls Holiday

When the eternally optimistic Poppy, queen of the Trolls, learns that the Bergens no longer have any holidays on their calendar, she enlists the help of Branch and the rest of the Trolls on a mission to fix something that the Bergens don't think is broken! Can't stop the music when the Trolls' wondrous TROLL-IDAY special arrives in time for Christmas 2017.
Out on DVD from 20th November - buy here


SHARE:

Friday, 17 November 2017

Christmas Gift Guide - For Her | Under £25

So firstly, is anyone else really confused as to why 'Black Friday' has come a week early to the UK this year? Yep me too.  Not that I'm complaining of course, it just means that I can get deals on my Christmas shopping a week earlier than normal and this year (with impending baby) it is definitely needed!

For the first instalment of this year's gift guides I wanted to start with budget items - the stocking fillers and smaller items that look pretty but certainly don't break the bank.  Here's what I have for you:



1. Ouai Hair Oil £24.00 - Purchase here
Stylist to the likes of the Kardashians, Jessica Alba and Jennifer Lopez,  Jen Atkin launched the Ouai brand in 2016.  I've heard so many rave reviews about the line and this hair oil seems to be considered a must have. 

2. Skinnydip Cat Eye Sunglasses £25.00 - here
I'm a huge fan of cat eye sunglasses and these ones by Skinnydip are no exception.  An all-black outfit with a winter white or cream teddy coat and these? A winter outfit of dreams.

3. George Sequinned Flower Jumper £18.00 - here
Glitz and sequins are no better received than during the festive season and this jumper is definitely a more subtle way to wear them.  For the more conservative sequin-wearer this jumper is a must and with it's bell sleeve detail and grey knit, it couldn't be more on trend for the season.

4. Decleor Surprise Cracker Gift £12.00 - here
This little gift is perfect for someone you want to give a little touch of luxury to, but definitely don't want the luxury price tag to match.  Perfect for a colleague or as a cute stocking filler, it suits a woman of all ages.

5.  Estella Bartlett Fern Leaf Stud Earrings £18.00 - here
These studs are simply stunning and perfect for anyone who loves to wear jewellery.  They're subtle enough for everyday and are sure to be well received.

I found so much more whilst researching this guide - if any of you want a part 2 budget gift guide, please leave a comment below and I will get that post up as soon as I can! Happy shopping!
SHARE:

Wednesday, 15 November 2017

Candy Cane Christmas Tree


Ok, so I know it may be (is) a tad early to be decorating for Christmas but the truth is, I've been fighting the urge to decorate for a good month already! Blame the nesting (I blame everything on the nesting). But seriously, I have 2 legitimate reasons for starting the festive period early this year:

1. I have a human that I've been growing for the last 8.5 months arriving shortly and: 
2.  This gives you guys enough time to take inspiration for your decor this year!

So my theme started from the humble candy cane this year, and spiralled into something you see in these pictures! It's fair to say I did definitely go overboard with the oversized ornaments but I really think it gives my (otherwise sparse) tree a really full look and I love it! Another decision I made was to also forgo a star as my tree topper and use these giant glittery poinsettia flowers to add a little bit more of an impact. 

Click the video at the end of this post to see me decorate and explain in more detail!




SHARE:

Friday, 10 November 2017

Baby Girl Nursery Tour | Baby Blogs


So it's here! I'm so glad I got this video up finally - I did wonder whether i would before our baby girl actually made an appearance!

There are a few touches {mainly a floor lamp behind the chair} I still want to add but overall i'm happy with the way it turned out and I hope it gives you some inspiration if you're currently decorating a nursery.

Let me know if you want to see more home decor posts/videos from me - I'm currently in the process of updating our kitchen!



Watch the full tour here:

SHARE:

Monday, 30 October 2017

Travel Diaries: Berlin

{Image from visitberlin.de}
So we recently took a 5-day trip to Berlin that I'm calling our second babymoon (it was actually a trip I had planned back in March for my husbands birthday).  My husband loves the band Mumford & Sons so I began by googling where they would be touring next.  He's one of those guys that has everything so coming up with something new and fun to do for his birthday every year is somewhat of a challenge.  So when I saw that Mumford were playing at the Lollapalooza festival in Berlin in September, I decided to book the tickets and go for it.


Given the fact that at the time of booking I obviously hadn't realised that I would be pregnant - getting around was a little bit of a struggle but I definitely made it through and spending a few days relaxing in this beautiful city turned out to be just what we both needed. 

Where we stayed

{image:booking.com}
We stayed at the Crowne Plaza Berlin City Centre and it turned out to be the perfect location for discovering the city and doing a spot of shopping.  The breakfast was standard fare - a buffet, but it did get really busy (we only ate there once, mainly for convenience and to feed my pregnancy hunger) so I would recommend getting up a little earlier for it. It was a little pricey at 19 Euros each - and not worth it in my opinion.  There were lots of bakeries/coffee shops nearby I recommend you check out first.
The hotel itself was great, the room was clean and modern with a standard city centre size (if not a little bigger). Definitely great for what we needed. 

Things to do



We were literally a 2 minute walk from an array of shops (Zara was on the corner of our hotel street) and a five minute walk to Berlin's answer to Harrods - KaDeWe (KaufhausdesWestens).  It's the second largest department store in Europe - second to only Harrods in London and is definitely worth a visit even just for the window shopping.  The street it's on also has an ample amount of other stores including Uniqlo, H&M, Pull&Bear etc.

Also a short walk from our hotel (and a minute walk from the KaDeWe) was the nearest tube station - U Wittenbergplatz.  From here you can get to so many places in the city.  We bought a 24hr unlimited ticket for 9Euros each and hopped on and off all day.



Also on the street the hotel (situated at the other end to the shops) is Berlin Zoo. Due to it's substantial size and great food options, you could easily spend a day here.

Bikini Berlin is also a short walk from the hotel and is a great alternative shopping/pop up store complex with some cafes and snack bars that definitely do not disappoint.  Find out more here. 'Funk You' is a good option for fellow avocado obsessed people such as myself.

Places to eat

{Monkey bar views}

We ordered room service more than I'd care to share on this trip (preggo problems) but we did visit a few places that are definitely worth a visit while you're there.

Monkey Bar Berlin takes it's name from it's location. It overlooks the monkeys at Berlin Zoo at the BikiniBerlin, so has a great view to enjoy whilst sipping on specialty cocktails or eating dinner.  Dinner reservations are taken weeks in advance so if you did want to eat here definitely make a reservation before you go.  If not, you can still go into the bar area and have a cocktail (or mocktail in my case) but be aware that they are pretty pricey so a few might just be enough! There's also a great balcony area to sit out at on warmer evenings with stunning views. 


L'Osteria is also a brilliant option if you love Italian food like us (the people of Berlin seem to really like it too!). Also situated at the Bikini Berlin (can you tell we didnt walk far?) it was a perfect option.  Be warned - the pizzas are certainly sharers - my husband ordered one, ate just about half and had to take the rest home in a box (which he subsequently gave to a homeless guy who seemed a tad excited to see the box coming towards him! *all the feels*).  I opted for a mushroom risotto which was also a healthy portion size and definitely the best meal I ate while I was there.
SHARE:

Wednesday, 25 October 2017

Bedside Beauty


I've always been fairly bad at looking after my skin.  In the last few months I've been looking to rectify my bad habits by creating a 'bedside beauty' routine and I've found it to work so well.  Something about all my products being right next to my bed helps me stick to a routine without fail and follow the steps every single night. 

For removing my makeup I use whatever makeup remover wipes I have to hand (sometimes baby wipes....) which I appreciate isn't the best option for your skin but this routine is all about convenience to ensure I actually stick to it!

After I've removed my makeup I go in with a night cream.  This suits me better than moisturising during the day because I don't feel like daily moisturisers sit well on my face, especially if I'm applying makeup afterwards.  The other benefit is that night creams tend to have more of a chance to be completely absorbed into the skin while sleeping.  My favourite is this Aldi one -  Lacura Q10 night cream - SO inexpensive but so good.  If I've run out of this I'll use a natural oil like this Rosehip oil which I get from the beauty department at T K Maxx.



Next I'll use an under-eye cream.  This is now an essential for me as I feel like it brightens my eyes so much in the morning compared to if I don't use one, so I never skip this step. My favourites are here and here - I only have a sample size of this as it's super expensive!

Lip balm is also an essential especially since I've been pregnant as I've found my lips to be so dry for no real reason! I use this one during the day as well because I love the rosy tint.

My final step is using a great highly moisturising hand cream.  My hands do so much during the day that at night is the only time they get a rest! I take the opportunity to lather a generous amount onto my hands so it can soak in while I sleep.  I'm currently using this one.  My favourite is this one by Burt's Bees. It smells gorgeous!
SHARE:

Tuesday, 24 October 2017

Coffee talk: Body Dysmorphia

Some children see only things to hate about the way they look. Their condition can lead to depression, anxiety, self-surgery and even suicide 
- Eva Wiseman, The Observer


Today's Coffee Talk's subject is something we don't ever really discuss, but we talk about it all the time.  Let me explain.  How many times have you heard your mum or your best friend say they look fat or that they don't like their arms or whatever the case may be, and you look at them - honestly not knowing what they are seeing?  

Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD) is a serious problem.  I don't pretend at all to be affected by this so much that it affects my daily life, but I do know that it affects every woman in some kind of way whether they talk about it or not.  The reason I know that we all suffer from it,  is when I look back at old photos of times I remember thinking I was fat or I was worried that my outfit wasn't flattering enough etc.  


Since finding out that we are having a baby girl, it's definitely made me check myself every time I've said (or even so much as thought) something negative about my body.  Even though we don't mean to and we're not projecting these comments onto another person, we think it's ok to say it about ourselves. In doing this, we're not really realising that our comments can become damaging in the long term and cause the younger generation to look for things to pick at - because they've learned to.

When these thoughts become an obsession is when the real problems can start.  It can turn into a full-blown mental disorder that can lead sufferers to self mutilate in the hope that they can fix the 'problem' that they think they're seeing that sadly isn't even there in the first place.   After reading this article, one thing I thought was how reserved the estimated figures were.  Granted, not everyone is affected so much that they embark on surgery, but '1 in 50 people suffering in varying degrees' ? It seems somewhat conservative to me and the number has to be higher among women especially due to 'comparison culture' brought on by the success of social media.

What the article also reveals sadly is that bullying is a factor that can affect a child's psyche and make them question the way they look and no amount of positive reinforcement from a parent can counteract that, because we're seen as 'having to say that'.  It seems to me that the only solution is to take the focus off of looks altogether.  Things we say to girls include: you look beautiful, your hair looks nice, your make up looks good.  Have you ever noticed that when you're talking to a boy you are more likely to comment on his experiences, his toys/possessions, or what he'd been doing that day?

BDD is in my opinion definitely something we can all be aware of, and whilst I'm not saying that  commenting 'you look pretty' should be off the agenda completely, maybe it shouldn't be the first thing we say.


SHARE:

Monday, 23 October 2017

Autumn Hygge


Autumn is my favourite time of year and has been for as long as I can remember.  I don't think I could really put it into words how I felt about it until the Danish term 'Hygge' became more well known.  It just sums up how this time of year makes me feel - the temperature drop, the cosy netflix (and hot chocolate) nights, oversized knits, pumpkin spice lattes and nature's amazing colours.

{Image source: Pinterest}

This time of year also always turns me into a crazed 'nesting' woman so as you can imagine now with also being pregnant, it's reached an all time high.  I never understood why there was such a thing as a 'spring clean' considering how much more motivated I feel to do things around the house at this time of year.  Do you have favourite things about this time of year?


SHARE:

Tuesday, 18 July 2017

Travel Diaries: Venice


{Dress (River Island): sold out | Hat (ASOS): here | Bag (River Island) : sold out}

{St Mark's Square}

Things to do

There are obviously an abundance of things to do and see in Venice however we unfortunately just had one day (or 6 hours).  We booked a catamaran crossing from Pula, Croatia and docked at St Basilio port in Venice.  We were told that we could get a water taxi to St Mark's Square, however we declined in favour of walking the streets (with the help of Google Maps) to find our way.  I recommend doing this to see the real Venice and the quaint little shops on the way selling handbags and (fake) Murano Glass items.   Part of our little walking journey also included walking along the waterways and bridges of Venice which was what I'd really been looking forward to seeing.
After taking a leisurely walk and lots of pictures we arrived at St Mark's square which is where the Basilica can be found.  The buildings around the square are opulent and impressive, however if you're looking for food or drink I would definitely head back further out - for a lovely meal at a fraction of the cost.  To give you an idea, to sit down with an ice cream sundae outside the Basilica will cost you no less than 19 Euros. No joke.

A gondola ride is a must when visiting Venice and is an amazing way to appreciate how beautiful and unique the city is.  We paid 100 Euros for a private one, however there are options to split one with other tourists.


The Grand Canal and Rialto Bridge are definitely another must see in Venice.  Hire a water taxi to view this amazing 'street' - most of it cannot be accessed by walking and is definitely easier (and better) to appreciate from a boat.

Places to eat

Being in Venice for such a short amount of time, we only had one meal during our time there.  In the narrow streets leading to St Mark's square (about a 5-10 minute stroll out) you can get a great Italian pizza, pasta or salad for around 10 Euros each.  As advised, avoid St Mark's square if you want to avoid the extortionate prices, however if you're okay with paying a little more and want some history/culture - visit the Cafe Florian.  This - the oldest cafe in Venice, was opened in 1720 under a different name and was/is a favourite haunt of many celebrities including Andy Warhol and George Clooney.

 {St Mark's Basilica}

{Taking a water taxi down the Grand Canal}
SHARE:

Baby Blogs : Gender Reveal!

{image source}

Today's post is very exciting because i'm doing a gender reveal! So of course I am as impatient as they come and had to find out what the baby was going to be (although it was also so I could decorate the room accordingly!)... 
we're having a girl!

I was completely convinced I was having a boy so was shocked to find out it was a girl but we're thrilled to be having a little girl join us in December!

You can watch the video below for an update on how I've been feeling at 18 weeks pregnant here:


SHARE:

Sunday, 18 June 2017

Buy My Wardrobe: Kate Spade Alessa Handbag


Anyone who knows me, knows about my love affair with the Kate Spade brand.  The dreamy dresses, cute handbags (I have 4 and counting..) and not to mention the stationery.  So it definitely hasn't been an easy decision to sell my beloved Kate Spade Alessa handbag, however with pregnant lady nesting mode in full effect, a clear-out has been inevitable.

Despite my love for this bag, it has literally not been used more than twice and despite the above picture making the bag look blue, it's actually a gorgeous mint green shade - a feature that literally caught my eye across the Las Vegas store 2 years ago.

So it's with a heavy heart that I look to part ways with this beauty.  Original carrier bag and Kate Spade dust bag included, it's in immaculate condition with no signs of wear or marks.

Interested? You can buy it from Vestiare Collective website here:

Alessa Handbag 
SHARE:

Saturday, 17 June 2017

The Little White Dress

{Dress - here & similar here | Bag (on sale!) - here | Shoes - Primark}

It's not often I wear white, and especially not a white dress but something about this fabric just appealed to me.  The ornate embroidered detail paired with it's empire line shape (perfect for comfort and bump skimming purposes), I knew I just had to have it.  The bag gave the outfit a western feel without making it overly themed and I can't wait to wear it with other summer outfits this season.







SHARE:

Friday, 16 June 2017

Coffee Talk: Pregnancy Weight Gain


Whether you like a frapp, a latte, a decaf (hello pregnant me) or any other kind of coffee - grab it now dears as I'm starting a new series on the blog today called: Coffee Talk.  The series will include things that are going on in my life, my experiences and things I think need to be talked about.  So for the first instalment I'll be focusing on something that may be just a little controversial - 'Pregnancy Weight Gain'.  


I know what you're thinking.  You're growing a LIFE. Why worry about weight gain whilst you're pregnant. It's crazy! Give yourself a break.


This is exactly how I felt when people I'd met in the past who were pregnant would complain they were 'FAT' or compare themselves to a baby elephant.  So imagine my surprise when I actually became pregnant myself and realised how hard it was to come to terms with.  I'm now 14 weeks pregnant and it's safe to say I've POPPED! 
Now, don't get me wrong.  I am so thankful that we're having a baby and I hope every day that things will progress well and I'll have a healthy pregnancy (which of course at the end of the day is literally the only thing that matters).  That said, my weight gain recently is definitely something I'm having to come to terms with and deal with.  The frustration of your clothes (and underwear - hello boobs) no longer fitting you, the way you look in pictures, the general 'ick' feeling of being larger than you're used to is hard, and it happens FAST.  

I think generally with normal (non-pregnancy) weight gain it's definitely a slower process and if you feel yourself putting on a few extra pounds, you can easily do some exercise or check your diet to keep it under control.  When it comes to pregnancy weight gain, you can do very little about it.  Of course a little exercise is deemed healthy during pregnancy however over-doing it (if it's something you're body is not used to) can be dangerous.  Same with diet, instead of restricting calories you need to be making sure you're giving your baby the nutrition it needs for the best possible start in life.

On reflection, I guess this is the first challenge/sacrifice you'll go through as a mother and although it seems completely vain and superficial, you're certainly allowed to feel some loss of control.  You're only human after all. 

For all the mums/mums to be out there: How did you feel about pregnancy weight gain?
SHARE:

Monday, 12 June 2017

What's inside? June Glossybox


I've always been a fan of subscription boxes.  Aside from the fact it feels like you're getting a present from the postman every month, you get to try out a plethora of products and find those you didn't even know you needed.  

My eagerness to break into this month's products means that there is one missing from the above photo, so I'll start there.

Everyone's seen those crazy videos by now of people covering their faces and bodies with Charcoal masks and seemingly unable to peel them off because they were so painful? Ok so this was not that bad however it did loosen blackheads especially around my nose which are usually the most stubborn. Well worth a try.
£4.95 for 3 applications -Buy it HERE 

Being a self confessed skincare avoider (something I'm trying to overcome), anything with the words 'reduces the appearance of under-eye circles' and 'minimising puffiness' and I'm sold.  Having tried the notoriously expensive skincare by 111SKIN before, I know I'm in for a treat with this one.  
Buy it HERE

I've talked about my love for Sleek makeup in the past.  I find the quality for the price a steal and love the shade range they produce.  On top of the great quality of Sleek products, this lip crayon contains a lip-tingling ingredient that encourages blood to the surface of the lips, therefore making them appear more plump. 
Buy it HERE

I haven't had the greatest experience with leave-in conditioners, so I'm excited to see if this works. It's ingredients contain Shea Butter & Argan Oil, which I'm sure my split ends will thank me for.
Buy it HERE

This product intrigues me.  The thought of a hair oil in a spray form, leads me to question if product distribution will be easy to control.  It claims to reduce breakage by up to 50% without leaving hair oily.  
Buy it HERE

6. Manna Kadar Cosmetics - Sheer Glo
After swatching this on my hand,  knew this would be a firm favourite.  However, I was a little disappointed to discover that this product doesn't seem to be available online currently, but here's hoping they figure that out before I run out.  This dewy glow enhancing product can be worn alone or mixed with foundation.
Buy it ?



SHARE:

Thursday, 8 June 2017

Baby Blogs: I'm Pregnant! 12 weeks


Welcome to the first instalment of a new series I'm calling: Baby Blogs! Expect to see lots of updates,  things I've purchased for when the baby comes and of course some maternity fashion! 

We are beyond happy to be expecting a little one and I'm looking forward to everything that's to come - including the many challenges!

I have a little update video of my experiences during the first trimester (which I can't believe is already over!) You can watch here:




SHARE:

Thursday, 1 June 2017

Subscriber Giveaway!

So this week marked a huge milestone in terms of my Youtube channel; Lisa Jane.  We reached 5,000 subscribers and I couldn't be happier! Youtube is something I've been doing for 2 and a half years and has been a consistent hobby from day one.  If you haven't subscribed yet I share fashion, makeup, beauty and lifestyle videos and you can be a part of it here.

To celebrate 5,000 I've decided to giveaway a Spectrum Collections brush set, the iconic Mermaid Dreams Glam Clam.  For details on how to enter, watch the video here:


SHARE:

Monday, 3 April 2017

Travel Diaries: Florida


Where I stayed

The B Resort & Spa

We stayed at The B Resort & Spa in the Lake Buena Vista Area.  The hotel itself had an amazing contemporary feel with quirky touches, and is within walking distance of Downtown Disney.  The hotel also offers a free shuttle service to the Disney parks (the hotel is located within the Walt Disney World Resort) which departs several times throughout the day and evening.

We stayed in a pool facing room with a balcony (highly recommended) and the leisure area with an adequately equipped gym (yes I used it!) was great.  The hotel also had your typical American 'Tony Roma' style restaurant just off the lobby which served breakfast, lunch and dinner.  The restaurant also had a fully equipped bar with stylish seating.


Things to do

I'm going to try and keep this section to a minimum, as Florida has an almost unlimited number of things to do - as you made have heard! 

Obviously the Disney Parks and Universal were our main port of call (I'll definitely get to that in a minute!) however we also frequented the Lake Buena Vista Factory Stores where we had some amazing (like unbelievable) deals on luggage, watches, clothing and (of course) handbags! Hello Kate Spade shop...

The Parks




When it comes to theme parks, you're obviously spoilt for choice in Florida.  If you're new to it all you absolutely have to try them all of course! My favourites are Epcot (I think I'm on my own there!), Universal and Disney's Hollywood Studios (Tower of Terror has now gone - boo! but the Aerosmith roller coaster is a MUST!)

Downtown Disney


Downtown Disney is also always a spot worth a visit.  The area is filled with shops and bars and is perfect for an evening dinner and walk. There's so much to see! Expect crowds though as it does get really busy - it might be worth pre-booking those dinner reservations to avoid queueing.

Where we ate

Aside from the theme park food there were a couple of places we ate I though deserve a mention. 

Johnny's Hideaway

As a group of 13, Johnny's had no problem accomodating us for dinner without a booking.  The food is priced in the middle-range (i.e. not super expensive but definitely a bit more than your average meal out).  The food itself was faultless and service was great also.  Overall a great place to eat! I would definitely recommend it and will be going back next time I'm in Florida.  

Fulton's Crab House

Fulton's Crab House (pictured above) was a New Orleans style boat restaurant (now called Paddlefish) serves {as the name would suggest} seafood and American style fayre, with vegetarian options also available.  It's a great novelty style restaurant with great food in a fantastic location.



SHARE:
Blogger templates by pipdig