A Weekend Away

The weekend just gone, I spent it in a beautiful cottage in Derbyshire celebrating my cousins 30th birthday and seeing as I had such a lovely time, I wanted to share that with you on here, which means you get an extra blog post this week!

The Cottage:

After college, my mum and I packed and then drove down to the cottage, arriving at about 5.45pm. We were one of the first to arrive and therefore had plenty of time to look around the property and see what it had to offer. We were so impressed by all the facilities it had and how impressive it looked. By about 7pm, the rest of the guests had arrived and we sat down to enjoy pizza and an array of snacks- all very delicious, even if the bottom of the margherita pizza (my favourite kind) was black (no exaggeration).

Friday night was a pyjama and games evening, so after dinner, everyone changed into their pyjamas or onesies, ready to play. We started with a game of Pictionary which was very entertaining but rather competitive between the two teams... I'm pleased to say that our team won! We then played the Cardboard Box Game where you have to pick up the cardboard box with your mouth without anything but your feet touching the floor. It gets very difficult as the box gets shorter but it's also fun to watch and try. I was pleasantly surprised with how well I did as I managed to get to one above completely flat which I did not expect given my height and how inflexible I thought I was. We then ended with a game of Guess The Baby where everyone had brought a picture of themselves between 0 and 12 months and we had to guess who we thought each one was. It was a very difficult task but again I was pleasantly surprised with how well I did as I managed to get 10 out of 14 right- a lot more than I expected!
We spent the day individually doing what we wanted to do, therefore the group was quite split. My mum and I started the day by doing a very brief gym workout- we would have done a full one but many of the machines felt like they might break and so we stuck to the few that didn't. We then dipped in the pool for a little while before getting into the hot tub with a few others. After showering and getting ready, we went with my auntie to pick up a car seat that she'd bought on ebay and needed to collect from a place near to the cottage and stopped for a drink in a lovely cafe on the way back. The afternoon was beautifully hot and sunny so I spent it outside, planning blog posts up until the end of the year (organised or what?!), snacking on peanuts and chatting to some of the lovely ladies that I was spending the weekend with.

In the evening, we had a meal booked at Angelo's so we got ready leisurely, listening to music and talking as we did so and walked to the pub/restaurant. On the way, we stopped at the park, trying to see how many of us we could get onto the swing- as shown in the picture at the top of this post (I was on the swing originally but as I'm one of the tallest, I didn't want to block anyone off the photo, so I moved off). The meal was absolutely delicious; I had Tomato, Mozzarella and Basil to start, Penne Arrabiata as a main and a Treacle Sponge for desert... It was all lovely; there was plenty of delicious food, the atmosphere was great, the service was brilliant and overall, the evening was amazing.

After walking back to the cottage and getting into comfy clothing, we had a lot of fun with singstar. Some had had more to drink than others which was very evident at this point and I enjoyed watching people singing and dancing to the songs even though I didn't want to do it myself.
We started the day with a delicious cooked breakfast, all sat at the table together enjoying it before getting in the pool for the second morning running, although this time we skipped the gym beforehand. It was lovely and relaxing as well as a lot of fun. We then finished the weekend with afternoon tea, sat outside in the sun, digging into plenty of delicious cakes!

I hope you enjoyed reading this rambly post about my weekend away. Let me know what you got up to this weekend in the comments.

Disclaimer: None of these photos were taken by myself, all were taken by a few of the ladies that stayed at the cottage with me over the weekend.

Love, Steph x

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I Love Autumn Tag

Tag Tuesday is back after a couple of weeks hiatus (sorry about that, I ran out of tags I wanted to do and had little time to find some more and write them) but as it is officially Autumn, I thought this tag would be both appropriate and interesting to do.

1. Favourite Autumn lip product?
At the moment, my favourite is the J2O Apple and Raspberry Lip Balm which I love because it hydrates and softens my lips, it smells/tastes delicious and leaves a purple/berry tint to my lips which is noticeable but not overpowering and it generally looks great. That probably isn't the standard answer to this but I prefer it to my lipsticks and lipglosses for an Autumn look.

2. Favourite Autumn nail varnish?
I don't have one specific favourite but my favourite Autumn nail varnish colours would be reds, purples and golds.

3. Favourite Autumn Starbucks drink?
I don't usually go to Starbucks and if I do, I pick an innocent smoothie but going along similar lines, my favourite Autumn Costa drink would be Hot Spiced Apple which is very Autumnal and Wintery and tastes lovely. It's also very warming on a cold day.

4. Favourite Autumn scalf or accessory?
I love when it gets to Autumn and you can bring the scalves out again and although I love lots of different scalves, my favourite would have to be this one, which was from a stand in intu Derby and was part of a two for £5 deal. It's really easy to wear due to it's neutral colours, it's soft, cute and really warm- everything you want from a scalf!

5. Haunted house, haunted hay ride or haunted corn maze?
I've never been to any of these but based on what I've seen or heard about them, I think I'd say a haunted house- I don't really have a reason why.

6. Favourite Halloween movie?
I would have to go with Hocus Pocus as a favourite Halloween classic. I've watched it for years and just think it's a great film. Although this year, I plan on watching a few horror films around Halloween as this is one of the first years I've actually enjoyed watching them.

7. Favourite sweets to eat on Halloween?
I love a lot of different ones but for some reason I love parma violets on Halloween as they often come in the tub we buy for trick or treaters not that I pinch any!

8. What are you dressing up as for halloween?
I'm afraid it's a boring answer- I'm not.

9. Favourite Autumn candle?
As much as I love candles, I never light them as I worry about forgetting about them and leaving them unattended, therefore I only own a couple which just look pretty and I have more recently bought two from Primark which smell lovely and Christmassy! However, I would love to own a couple of the Christmas Yankee Candles, one of which I think is also quite Autumnal; Sparkling Cinammon... so I guess that would be my favourite.

10. What is your favourite thing about Autumn?
This is too difficult a question to pick one favourite thing but my favourite things would have to be:
My Birthday
Bonfire Night
Cosy Nights
Hot Chocolate
Crisp Leaves
Cosy Clothing
and probably a lot more but these are the top ones.

I hope you enjoyed reading this post. If you share my excitement for Autumn, let me know your favourite thing in the comments or an answer to one of the questions. As with all 'Tag Tuesdays' I won't be tagging anyone specific but if you want to give it ago, feel free to send me the link and I'll be sure to check it out.

Love, Steph x

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Primark, Superdrug, Lush and More Haul

This time last week I uploaded a haul saying I hadn't done one for months and now I've found myself uploading one for the second week on the trot. However, as I said before I enjoy doing them and as I went shopping at the weekend, I wanted to upload it shortly after so if you see anything you like, you can get your hands on it and possibly get the same deals I got.

Disney Quote T-Shirt £6.00
It has such a lovely quote (although any Disney quote... and I'll probably like it). I love how its just plain white with black writing and black graphology but with some gold to brighten up and sparklify the top. I especially like how the gold, sparkley words are such beautiful ones. Aside from the fact I think it's adorabe, it's also super comfy and easy to wear which is always a positive! 

Sleeveless Woollen Jacket £14.00
I'm not too sure what this is called but I think it's a great piece to own as we're heading into Autumn and Winter. It's quite cosy and warm without being too thick or bulky. I also like the fact it has short/practically no sleeves as I have very long arms and so finding a jacket like this with long arms would be very difficult. The neutral colour makes it easy to pair with and and add to an outfit.

Long Roll Neck Jumper £12.00
I think this might be my favourite purchase... It's warm but not too warm. Again, I like the sleeveless design and think it would be easy to pair with a black long sleeved top underneath if it's particularly cold or just a jacket on top. The colour is perfect for Autumn and will go nicely with berry lip/eye shades which is a route I'd like to go down this Autumn. It's also very comfy but still looks pretty.

T-Shirt £6.00
A simple t-shirt really; grey toned which is quite easy to wear, great for the colder seasons. Meanwhile, the gold detail along the pocket adds a bit of pizzazz. I think it will make a nice outfit without a lot of thought- perfect for college.

White Lace Top £7.00
I bought this top before and loved it; it's so comfy but still looks nice (several people have commented on this) and it's so easy to wear on a lazy day whilst still looking like you've made a bit of an effort. Unfortunately my first one got ripped and as I loved it so much, I decided to pick up a new one.

'Bow' Bobbles £1.50
These are super cute and add a little extra to a simple hairstyle. I love wearing these and might have to pick myself up a few more in different colours or patterns. Again, they're effortlessly pretty.

Revolution Redemption Palette Iconic 3 Eye Palette £4.00
So inexpensive but amazing! I have tried it a couple of times before writing this and have had no problem with the quality or how long it lasts; in my experience it's lasted as long as any other I've used. The shades are gorgeous... especially the pinky/purple shades as we head into Autumn. I would definitely recommend this product and will consider buying some others from Revolution.

Zoella Candy Cream Softening Body Lotion £5.00 £4.00
As many of you are probably aware (if you watch Zoella) she has released not one, but two beauty ranges and after trying and loving a few products in the first range, I have been excited to get my hands on some of the new ones. I only picked up the body lotion but I may have to get a few more as it smells and feels incredible, and leaves my skin feeling lovely. The 'Zoella Beauty' range has £1 off everything in Superdrug at the moment, so if you're thinking of trying some out, now's probably as good a time as any to do so.

Simple Protecting Light Moisturiser SPF15 £4.35 £2.45
I love this moisturiser as it's very refreshing and hydrating for my skin and leaves my face feeling soft, so as there was such a great deal on the products and a decent amount off, I figured now was a good time to pick up a replacement for when mine runs out.

Maybelline Lash Sensational £7.99
I have heard so many people raving about this mascara, so naturally, I bought it to try for myself. Whilst I don't like it as much as the L'Oreal False Lash Superstar Mascara, this is a close second and is great for lengthening and volumising my lashes. I love that it has a curved, rubber wand, angled to reach all your lashes and give the best result.

Collection Long Lasting Perfection Concealer £4.19 £3.99
A classic! I simply needed to replace my old one and wanted to stick with the same concealer as it gives such a brilliant finish; it has a good coverage, it blends easily, feels lightweight and it lasts! 

Maybelline Brow Satin £5.99 £2.99
I love this brow product, it is the only thing I love to use on my brows and that actually gives me the shape I want which in turn makes me feel a lot happier and possibly more confident with not just my brows, but my overall face. I bought this with the mascara on a buy one get one half price deal hence the price drop. I'd definitely recommend this to anyone looking for the perfect brow product.

Twilight Bath Bomb £3.35
I love the smell of this bath bomb and the way it looks when you pop it in the bath. It has to be one of my all time favourite Lush products with quite a calming effect, ideal for an evening soak. 

Creamy Candy Bubble Bar £2.75
Another of my all time Lush favourites but this one is a far sweeter scent which if you like that sort of thing, is lovely to be able to smell as you relax in the bath. I also find this bubble bar really moisturising, leaving my skin feeling particularly soft. It does normally have a flower on the top (in the circle) but for some reason, all of the bars in the store were missing the flowers.

Bandana £2.00
I love having bows or something similar in my hair and for a while I have considered trying a bandana as I loved using the headbands with a pole through them (I don't know the proper name) which allow you to shape accordingly, including create a bow, and I think bandanas seem to do a similar job but give a slightly different look which I like. This one was very inexpensive from tiger but it's pretty and allows me to create some new hairstyles which I love to do.

Extra Cool Breeze Chewing Gum £1.00
This is my go to chewing gum and the only mint flavoured one that I love. I don't like mint flavoured things very much, especially strong ones so this one is perfect as it's quite a sweet mint but still leaves your mouth and breath smelling and feeling fresh. I always keep a pack of these with me!

Sports Bottle £1.00
Not a lot to say about this other than I needed a bottle for college but didn't want to pay a lot. I like the colour although the lid and bottle don't quite match which bugs me and I find that the screw top prevents spillages which is a must for my college bag and it's quite a handy size.

iPhone 5 Screen Guards £1.00
I actually got a new iPod recently and hadn't got any screen protectors to fit it, so when I saw these in poundland I decided to try them. They aren't a perfect fit for my iPod as they are designed for iPhone 5s but it does the job until I can get one that fits better.

Thank you for reading this post, I hope you enjoyed seeing the things I bought and my first impressions of them. If you have any new purchases that you recommend, let me know.

Love, Steph x

I hope you enjoyed reading about the products I've bought recently. If you liked this post, please share it and follow if you want to read more blog posts.

Bits and Bobs Haul

It seems like absolutely ages since I last did a haul despite the fact they are one of my favourite posts to do. Therefore, I thought it was about time I uploaded a new one containing all of the things I've bought in the last month or so (during and after my holiday) across a range of stores and categories.

Beauty and Fashion
Real Techniques Core Collection Kit:
As you may remember from previous posts I have loved using the real techniques expert face brush over the past few months so after trying one of the brushes, I wanted to get hold of a few more and involve them in my make up routine. I don't like these four as much as the expert face brush however they are very good brushes and make my make up application a lot smoother and easier. I bought this kit from Amazon for £13 as opposed to the RRP of £20.99 which I believe was a very good deal and was definitely worth it. 
Available to buy here.

Rimmel Wake Me Up Foundation:
I have heard so many positive reviews of the Rimmel Wake Me Up make up range and couldn't wait to try it for myself. I managed to find this in face2body for £4.99 as opposed to the £8.99 RRP and I've really liked using it; it's got a good, medium coverage, it's easy to apply and it lasts well.
Available to buy here.

Rimmel Wake Me Up Concealer:
Like I mentioned above, I wanted to try this range and as my concealer had pretty much run out (Collection long lasting perfection concealer), I needed to purchase a new one. Whilst in Boots, I saw a 2 for £10 deal on Rimmel products and figured it was the perfect time to give it a try. I do really like this concealer but I like it more for my under eyes and any redness rather than for blemishes. I think I might have to repurchase the Collection concealer for that and keep this one just for my under eyes and redness.
Available to buy here.

Rimmel Scandal Eyes Thick and Thin Eyeliner:
This was the other product I decided to purchase as part of the 2 for £10 deal and I love this. I had kind of gone off using eye liner in my daily make up routine for a while and whilst I've not gone back to using it daily, this product makes me want to do it more often. It's a felt liner which is easy to control and glide over the eyelid and creates either a thin or thick look as the name suggests.
Available to buy here.

Maybelline Colour Show Blush 'Em:
I really like the matte finish this blusher provides; it gives your cheeks a natural glow, looks pretty and subtle and is very inexpensive! Although, I don't think the brush is the best to use with it.
Available to buy here.

Max Factor Face Finity All Day Flawless 3 in 1 (Primer, Concealer and Foundation in one):
I was given this foundation by one of my friends who bought it but found it too light for her skin and I have been very impressed with it. This has been my go-to foundation each morning recently as I really like the finish it provides, it's quite long lasting, it's got a good coverage without feeling cakey and it makes a great make up base.
Available to buy here.

Agatha Ruiz De La Prada Oh La La Perfume:
I love this perfume but unfortunately I can only get it abroad so when I saw it in a Spanish supermarket, I thought it would be best to get a new one for when my current bottle runs out (probably very soon). It has a fresh, floral and quite sweet scent without being overpowering.

H&M Patterned Joggers:
Again, I bought these whilst I was in Spain and I'm very happy with the purchase. As I mentioned in my August favourites (here), these trousers are ridiculously comfy and can easily be dressed up or down.

I originally wanted to watch this film in the cinema but never got chance to however, I finally managed to get it on DVD and watch it at home. It's a great chick flick combining romance and comedy all in the right proportions for an entertaining film (although in my opinion, you can never have too much of either of those things).
Available to buy here.

i was here by Gayle Forman:
I loved reading and watching if i stay (by the same author) and after reading this blurb a few months ago, I knew I had to read this book. So far I've only read the first couple of pages but I can't wait to read more of it.
Available to buy here.


Sprinkle of Glitter Diary 2016:
As an avid watcher of Louise Pentland (Sprinkle of Glitter) and a huge fan of Life With A Sprinkle Of Glitter (review here), I was excited to get my hands on her 2016 diary which will hopefully encourage me to use a diary more efficiently next year. I have had a brief look through at the pages for each week and so far, I like what I've seen although I didn't want to look at all of them properly and ruin the surprise of opening each page on the right week next year.
Available to buy here.

It's Time To Start Living Notebook:
Another product I bought whilst in Spain. I love this notebook as it has such a positive, cute message on the front cover as well as a beautiful photo. It's a handy size for carrying around and I particularly like the fact that it has a small folder on the back page for any extra notes or pieces of paper.

Papermate Ink Joy Coloured Pens:
These colourful pens are very useful for brightening up any college work and revision notes. They are very smooth to write with and look really nice even when you're writing something that maybe isn't the most interesting or fun to write.
Available to buy here.

Selfie Stick:
Another thing I mentioned in my August favourites, this selfie stick is a pretty fun thing to own and actually helps to get a better angle and better lighting for a selfie... it's great to have when hanging out with your friends as you have more chance of fitting people on.

I guess this is something I probably won't need to use very often in the future but I bought it on a very hot day in Spain and I thought it looked really pretty. So given the fact that it was very inexpensive, I'd say it was worth it even if I never use it again.

Love, Steph x

I hope you enjoyed reading about the products I've bought recently. If you liked this post, please share it and follow if you want to read more blog posts.
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