Xmas Sale Shopping

With Christmas just around the corner, there’s no better time to start shopping for the perfect gifts for your loved ones. You'll find plenty of amazing gift guides out there for all members of the family (even your four legged friends) so rather than bore you with yet another one, I thought I’d share a few ways you can save money on your Christmas gifts this year!

We all know Christmas can be an expensive time of year but there are plenty of ways you can reduce the cost of the gifts you give, so you’ve still got some pennies left over come the New Year (for the January sales!)

Secret Santa
One of the easiest ways to cut the cost of Christmas is to organise a Secret Santa! Rather than having to spend a small fortune on presents for every member of your friend group, you can instead spend a reasonable amount on a great present for just one of them.

Discount codes
Another way you can make mega savings on this year’s Christmas gifts is by using discount codes. At this time of year, competition is tough and stores are eager to win your business, therefore making them much more likely to share regular discount codes. These can be found on voucher websites, as well as emails from the stores themselves. I also recommend checking Twitter for discount codes - simply do a search and see if anyone has shared any.

Shop the sales
A final way you can save bags of money on your Christmas gifts this year is by doing a little sale shopping and this weekend is the perfect time for it! Yes, today is Black Friday – the biggest shopping day of the year! Although it was originally reserved for just the Friday (hence the name), many businesses now extend their offers over the entire weekend, until midnight on Monday (known as Cyber Monday).

With so many sales going on over this weekend, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the choice. The good news is that you can find all the best sales going on by heading to Love The Sales. This is a fantastic website that scours the Internet for the best sales from the top 500 UK websites and shares them with you all on one site. It makes sale shopping so much easier! You can shop by different categories (women’s clothing, beauty and grooming, home etc.) or by brand.

You can also sign up to Love The Sales to personalise your sale shopping results and make them more relevant to you. Once you sign up, either with your email or via Facebook, you’ll be able to specify information such as the type of sales you want to shop (men’s or women’s), your favourite brands and your sizes. Follow brands to be the first to know about new sale items and use Love The Sales’ suggested brands tool to discover new brands that have been matched to your requirements.

With so many fantastic sales to shop, you’re certain to find the perfect gifts at purse-friendly prices!


Written in collaboration with Love The Sales. 
All words and opinions are my own.
View Post

November Pawsomebox Review

It's Jazz and Oby's favourite time of the month - Pawsomebox time! And this month's pet subscription box certainly didn't disappoint with an array of food, play and hygiene related products for my four legged friends to enjoy.

My favourite thing about Pawsomebox is the toys and I immediately fell in love with the little dog toy included in November's box and so did Oby. We've named him Romeo.

Jazz was much more interested in the blue bouncy ball, proceeding to chuck it around the living room, making it very difficult to snap a picture of him! One of Jazz's little quirks is that he likes to put his toys away for safe keeping. It's definitely a sign that he loves his new toy when he goes and puts it in his wicker basket.

Next it was time to explore the dog treats included in this month's box. Jazz was particularly eager to see what was on offer, queuing up with a big grin on his face!

This month's dog treat selection included some Chicken Meatballs, low in fat and made with real chicken meat and some Tasty Bones by Wagg. The mini bone treats were a hit with both Jazz and Oby. Like the meatball treats, they were also made from real meat and designed to promote good health in your dogs - something we always look for in the dog treats we buy.

As well as the lovely toys and treats, November's Pawsomebox* also included some Trixie wipes and a snuggly dog blanket. The boys have been taking turns with the blanket and Oby even tried to play tug of war with it at one point! Here he is all snuggled up, all content, having enjoyed playing with his new dog toy and munching on some treats.

If you'd like to treat your dog to a Pawsomebox, I'm pleased to say you can now get 25% off your first box using my personalised code 'blga03pp'. The code applies to the first box on all plans, including 3, 6 and 12 month subscriptions. With Christmas just around the corner, there's no better way to spoil your four legged friend!

*Item kindly sent for review by Pawsomebox. 
All opinions are my own (with a little input from Jazz and Oby too!)
View Post

Arthur Daniel

I just wanted to write a little post to announce the birth of my beautiful baby boy, Arthur Daniel. He was born on 28th October at 21:13pm, weighing 9lb3. For someone who is usually good with words, I'm finding it impossible to describe just how much I love him. He's everything and he completes me. I feel like I know him so well from the 9 months we spent together, yet love discovering new things about him every day. He's wonderful, truly wonderful and I'm the world's proudest mummy.

View Post

Lush Haul

It's that time of year when Lush release their gorgeous Christmas range and the beauty blogging world goes crazy. Although I would have loved to have attended the Nottingham Lush event which I was invited to, where they were introducing some of the new products and old favourites, I just felt way too pregnant to make the journey! Still, this didn't stop me placing an online order for some goodies, so I can enjoy a few relaxing baths before the little Mr arrives.

A sucker for the Christmas collection, I decided to treat myself to an old favourite, So White. This may look a little on the boring side, compared to some of Lush's brighter bath bombs but let me tell you, it certainly doesn't disappoint! I love the gorgeous apple scent and pink rosy centre. It's perfect for a relaxing yet refreshing bath in the evening time. A fan of vanilla scents, I couldn't resist picking up the Star Dust bath bomb. I don't think I've come across this one before, so I'm assuming it's a new one. I also picked up the Father Christmas bath bomb, which I believe is supposed to smell like Snow Fairy (one of my favourites). I can't wait to try this out!

I also treated my mum and my brother to a couple of bath bombs, as they're Lush fans too. For my brother, I chose Dashing Santa, a mandarin and bergamot bath bomb and Intergalactic (a non-Christmas bath bomb) that looks like it's going to be amazing! My mum loves a pink bath, so I got her the Think Pink bath bomb, which is enriched with vanilla and lavender oil. It contains cute rice paper hearts, which will add a lovely touch to her already pretty pink bath water.

Mum's also a fan of Rose scents and after enjoying the Rose Jam Bubbleroon, I suggested she tried the Rose Jam Shower Gel. I'm not personally a fan of rose scents but even I love this one!

Last but not least I bought the Sea Spray Hair Mist, which is my favourite hair product of all time. It's not the cheapest salt spray at £9.95 but it's the best one I've ever used. I spritz it through my curls to give them that lovely natural, beachy look and I find it holds them in place so much better than hairspray.

What are your favourite Lush products? 
Any recommendations for me?
View Post

Living Room Tour

Leather Effect Tub Sofa - Argos // Leather Effect Tub Chair - Argos // Coffee Table - eBay // Striped Cushion Cover - H&M // Grey Cushion Cover - H&M // Shine Like The Stars Cushion - George
Something you may or may not know about me is that I live with my parents. It's not something I'm ashamed of - I have such a good relationship with my family and I'm lucky to have a lot of my own space, including a bedroom, living room, bathroom and nursery for the Little Mr (ready for when he arrives!) Basically it's like having my own flat but within easy reach of the people I love most!

I'll definitely be doing a little nursery tour for those interested but today I wanted to share my gorgeous new living room with you. It's stylish, yet comfortable and very ME. I'm absolutely in love with it!
When designing my living room, the first piece of furniture I found was this gorgeous Holstebro sideboard from Argos. I loved the dark Walnut wood finish and the almost retro feel it had. I was lucky that the colour of the wood toned in with the stripy flooring, which was already down in my living room and even luckier that Argos also sold a matching TV unit. Both pieces were on offer at a great price, so I quickly snapped them up!
As far as I'm aware the Holstebro Sideboard and TV Unit are no longer available (possibly discontinued) as I know Argos were having trouble with their suppliers. If you're looking for an equally stylish alternative, I definitely recommend checking out their Hygena range, which has a minimalist Scandi look to it that's really in right now.
Tealight Holder - H&M // Letter Candle - George // Copper Candle Holder - Next (similar here)
Of course, my living room would be an empty shell without a few home accessories! I decided to go for copper and marble accessories (I'm a walking cliche) but I think they look so, so beautiful. The copper shades tone in really well with my furniture and give my living room some warmth.
Cactus Plants - Ikea
Finding the right cushions for my living room was quite a challenge! I'm very picky and didn't want to spend a fortune. Although the cushion covers were very reasonably priced at H&M, they were charging £6.00 each for inners, which I think is a little expensive. After shopping around, I found that you could get 6 for the same price on Amazon, so I bought them from a seller on there instead. If you decide to do the same, make sure you check the sizes first!
Make a Little Magic cushion cover - H&M
Although I share the kitchen with my family, I wanted to have my own drink making facilities! It's so nice just being able to make a quick latte in the living room and really convenient when I have people over. I'm drinking decaf coffee at the moment but thankfully Tassimo do decaf pods so I don't miss out just because I'm pregnant!
Pyramid Kettle - George // Copper Cafetiere - George // Tassimo Machine - Argos (Currently less than half price) // Marble Effect Worktop Saver - George
Sticking with the copper theme, I managed to pick up three canisters from George at Asda (which is excellent for affordable home accessories by the way) for £4 each. Unfortunately they seem to be out of stock at the moment but keep checking the site just incase! I imagine they're pretty popular, what with everyone going crazy for copper right now.
Copper Coffee Canister - George
The great thing about my living room is that it's a practical space for working in too. Giving up my office space so I could create a nursery for the Little Mr was a no brainer but when I do get back into working from home, it's good to know I can work in here, rather than my bedroom. The coffee table top actually lifts up so you can have it at a raised height, giving you a desk option.
Marble Effect Coasters - H&M
So there we have my living room and some of my favourite items in it! I hope you've enjoyed having a nosey round. Be sure to let me know what you think! Oh and if you can recommend anywhere for prints I can put on the walls (not too expensive), leave a comment below as they're looking a little bare right now.


View Post

My Baby Shower

On Saturday 3rd October I had one of the most wonderful days ever. Not only was it my 25th birthday (a quarter of a century - eek!) but it was also my baby shower. When I found out I was pregnant I knew I wanted to have a baby shower but I didn't want it to be some big, crazy affair. Instead I wanted an intimate gathering with my bestest friends and that's exactly what was planned!

We decided to go for the traditional blue theme (as I'm having a little boy) but with a retro twist. We served cloudy lemonade and strawberry juice in adorable milk bottles, baked white chocolate topped cakes and offered all sorts of delicious sweets, packed into traditional candy striped bags. Oh and we also made dozens of sandwiches, which went down a treat! My baby shower had a really homemade feel to it. It was relaxed, casual and free from cringeworthy games. The perfect afternoon!

My best friends are spread all over the place, so it was really lovely to get together for a good old giggle and catch up. Not everyone could make it as two of my best friends are currently travelling Australia and others were on holiday but I felt that everyone was there in spirit.

The little Mr was absolutely spoilt by his aunties (thanks chicks!) and I feel so grateful that he will have such wonderful women in his life. I just want to say a special thank you to my best friend Liz, who helped us get set up and treated me to these beautiful Peter Rabbit themed baby shower cupcakes from Cuppa Kaykes.

Even though I'm not really into baby shower games (I can't understand why anyone would want to eat melted chocolate from a nappy *vom*) I thought it would be fun to get my friends to predict when baby would arrive. They all handed their cards in secretly, so only I know who has guessed what at the moment. I can't wait to find out if any of them get it right!

My special day wouldn't have been possible without my amazing family. My mum spent her entire Friday baking for me and got up at the crack of dawn on Saturday (which was also her birthday) to make sandwiches and clean. My dad worked his socks off to build the new furniture for my living room, before my guests arrived (which I'll be showing you in another post) and my brother was there to lend a helping hand when we needed him. Over the last few months they've been working tirelessly to get the house ready for me and my little boy and I just can't thank them enough. I've always been close to my family but over the last few months we've grown even closer and I feel so incredibly lucky to have their love and support.

Other pregnant women will know that it can be difficult feeling even the littlest bit fashionable when you're the size of a small house but thanks to this gorgeous seventies inspired dress from ASOS Maternity, I felt wonderful! I'm hoping it's a dress I'll be able to wear for a while after I've had the baby too. The colours in the pattern are really autumnal and I think it'll look lovely paired with my new Chelsea boots (once my feet can actually fit in them #pregnancyproblems).

It was a fun-filled afternoon that I will remember forever and the perfect way to celebrate my pregnancy. I'm now 37+4 days pregnant and can't wait to meet my son. Hopefully he won't make us wait too long!

View Post

Maple Holistics Review

One of the things I love most about blogging is discovering new brands, be they makeup, skincare, lifestyle or haircare. Recently Maple Holistics, a company I hadn't come across before, got in touch to see if I wanted to try some of their haircare products. It quickly became obvious why I hadn't heard of them before - they were a US brand but keen to expand my horizons, I was definitely up for seeing what they had to offer!

Something I always look for in a brand is good ethics, so I was very happy to see that Maple Holistics is a cruelty-free, vegan-friendly brand! What's more, they focus on a holistic approach, using natural ingredients in their products.

I was kindly sent the Degrease Moisture Control Shampoo* and the Silk18 Natural Hair Conditioner to try. As excited as I was to try the Degrease shampoo (as I do have the sort of hair that gets greasy fairly quickly) unfortunately I've had to hold off using it for now, as it contains Basil Oil, which you're not supposed to use in pregnancy (as far as I know). I will be reviewing it once I've had my baby but for now you can check out this page to find out more about it.

Thankfully I was able to use the Silk18 Natural Hair Conditioner* and I'm pleased to say I love it! It's a very lightweight, yet effective conditioner that is great for locking moisture in the hair, without making it greasy. The thing I love most about it is it's sweet and calming scent, which has been creating using 100% natural vanilla. It also contains pomegranate, hibiscus and sea buckthorn, which are great for nourishing the hair, repairing damage and boosting the vitamins you need for a healthy shine.

Although I can't find them on their website, Maple Holistics also have a lovely range of lip balms made from natural ingredients, which are paraben-free, GMO-free, gluten-free and soy-free. I got to try the pomegranate flavour and to me it smells and tastes like sweeties, so I love it! Aside from the gorgeous flavour it's also extremely nourishing on the lips and wonderfully soothes the dry lips I seem to have developed during pregnancy.

In addition to these lovely products, Maple Holistic also offer a fantastic range of shampoos and conditoners designed to treat various hair conditions, as well as skincare products and bath and body products, which I'll definitely be looking into trying myself in the future!

Now I know what you're thinking, that's all very well and good but what's the point if I can't buy the products in the UK? Well the good news is that Maple Holistics products are available from Amazon UK and the brand have also told me that they are planning to launch in the UK in the very near future - so if you're into natural, cruelty-free products, I suggest you keep your eyes peeled!

Have you tried any products from Maple Holistics?
*PR Sample
View Post

September Favourites

I'm back with another monthly favourites and this time I have a selection of hair, makeup and fashion items to share with you.

First up is the Percy and Reed Dry Instant Volumising Spray. It's rare that I get excited about hair products but this one actually seems to work on my hair! It's a blend between a dry shampoo and a volumising spray, great for second day hair. It instantly lifts my hair when I spray it into the roots and keeps the grease at bay.

I only own a few eyeshadow palettes but the Bobbi Brown Sand eye palette has quickly become one of my favourites. It contains eight shades in total, four matte and four shimmer and they're all so wearable. The shimmer shades are so pretty - I particularly like the warm copper shade. The mattes are also great for creating a classic neutral eye, perfect for everyday wear.

Lottie London isn't a brand I know much about but I've been loving their Make Me Blusher Blush. As the name suggests, this is a brush for blusher but that's not how I've been using it. Weirdly, I've actually been using it to buff in my BB creams! It's fairly large in size, making it great for applying your base in a rush but even in haste, I find it creates a flawless (or as flawless as I can get) finish. It's really quite soft and after a little research I found out Lottie London makeup brushes are cruelty free, which makes it even better in my eyes!

I love this little Pomegranate flavoured lip balm from Maple Holistics. It has a lovely buttery texture that leaves the lips feeling oh-so-soft. Even better, it tastes like sweeties!

Last but not least is my blue and white floral kimono from New Look, which I've actually used as the background for the images above! I bought this last summer but I've been getting so much wear out of it, over the last month or so. It's been one of my maternity fashion staples, as it's light in texture (so you don't get too warm) but still offers a little extra cover up. The pattern on it is so beautiful. I'll definitely be digging it out again next summer! Here's a little Instagram snap of me wearing it a few weeks ago (my bump has super sized since then.)

Have you tried any of these products? What did you think of them?


View Post

The Calm Birth School

When you think of hypnobirthing what springs to mind? Kumbaya-singing? Inner-goddess channelling? How about the giggle-worthy vagina whispering? (Yes that is the first time I’ve said the ‘V word’ on my blog – shocker.) I’m pleased to tell you that hypnobirthing isn’t any of those things and how do I know? Well I’ve been doing The Calm Birth School programme for the last couple of weeks and it’s completely opened my eyes to a whole new way of thinking.

Prior to enrolling on the course, I’d been interested in hypnobirthing, though I wasn’t really sure what it entailed or where I could go for more information. So when the lovely Suzy, co-founder of The Calm Birth School along with the equally as lovely Hollie, got in touch to tell me about their online course, I was eager to see what it was all about.

The Calm Birth School is basically a four week home study programme that is delivered online in the form of training videos. It’s all about helping women and their birth partners to create a calm and joyful birth – a birth they can enjoy. Whether you’re planning to give birth in hospital, at home or in a birthing centre, the videos guide and educate you on how to create a smooth birthing experience, so you can enjoy your pregnancy, free of fear.

So far I’ve completed the first two weeks of the course and I’ve already found it to be incredibly beneficial. Suzy and Hollie are so welcoming, friendly and funny in the videos. You feel like they’re in the same room as you, chatting away! Their videos are incredibly informative and I feel like I’ve already learnt so many valuable things from them, from breathing techniques to use in labour to making informed decisions and how to let go of some of the negativity surrounding birth. Essentially it’s about taking control of the things you can and letting go of what you can’t.

What I really love about this course is the way in which it’s delivered. The fact it’s online bite-sized videos (3 a week) makes it suitable for even the busiest of soon-to-be mum’s. I tend to watch the videos, as I’m winding down and getting ready for bed. There’s also a handbook to go alongside the weekly modules and mp3s, which you can download onto your phone and listen to as you go about your day. For extra support or a simple chat with other mum’s and dad’s to be, you can join the Facebook group. What I love most about the group is hearing other ladies' birth stories. It makes me all emotional (in the happiest way) and excited about what’s to come.

If you are pregnant and considering hypnobirthing then I’d highly recommend The Calm Birth School approach. I’m planning on doing another update once I’ve completed the course and then another once I’ve had my little boy. For now, I hope this has inspired you to see what The Calm Birth School is all about, whether you’re currently expecting or planning for a baby in the near future.

I received complimentary enrolment on The Calm Birth School course in return for an honest review.
View Post
Previous PostOlder Posts Home