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Fun Ideas To Do This Weekend

It’s easy to slip into the same old routine when you’re at home. You want to enjoy your precious day off or weekend with the kids, not watching the same repeats on iPlayer.

Whether it’s chucking down with rain and you’re indoors or the sun is beaming down and you want to get out and about, I have a few ideas* to make your day more enjoyable.

  • Start a Scrapbook – use anything that makes you happy, photos, cut outs from magazines, quotes or cards.
  • Get Moving – dance in your room to your favourite tunes, go for extra long walk, start an exercise routine or go swimming.
  • Make DIY gift boxes – great if you have extra cardboard from home deliveries, use scraps of materials, paint and ribbon, then fill them with sweets or mini beauty products.
  • Read that book you’ve been meaning to start or join an online book group.
  • Visit a museum or art gallery – great for inspiration.
  • Go on a bike ride – yes it can be fun!
  • Write a handwritten letter to someone, it’s always lovely to receive one in the post.
  • Start an art journal – don’t worry if you can’t draw, only you’re going to see inside it.
  • De-clutter your makeup drawer – you never know what’s lurking at the back, create a new makeup look from the products you’ve found.
  • Visit an open air cinema – make it a date night with your other half, take the kids along or have a mum and daughter night.
  • Do a DIY project – there are loads of ideas on Pinterest.
  • Make a mood board to hang on your wall – I used an old cork board and completely covered it with magazine cuttings and quotes.
  • Become a dog walker – Check with busy neighbors and friends on Facebook to see who may need their pets walking, or put up an ad to be a dog walker.
  • Visit a friend or family member – you know the one you’ve been promising to have a catch up with for ages.
  • Plan a small garden party – invite a couple of your friends round, why not make it a themed night or fancy dress?
  • Bake something different – always baking cakes, try making a savoury meal from scratch.
  • Be a tourist in your own town – it’s amazing what little treasures you can find and you never knew existed.
  • Learn a new language – planning on going abroad in the future, now’s the time to learn all the important stuff, well at least “can I order more wine, please?”
  • Play a board game – yes, the traditional game from years ago, these will keep you entertained for hours.
  • Visit a stately home – with rose gardens, woodland walks and adventure playgrounds there’s plenty for you to explore.
  • Go on a picnic – if the weather is nice enough, get out with a few friends and explore somewhere new, find a picturesque village or a beautiful walk by the river. Don’t forget your camera!
  • Make homemade pizzas – there are loads of ideas on line.
  • Start a photo a day challenge – it’s harder than you think!
  • Visit an elderly neighbour – yes, they’ll chat to you for hours about their youth and having your company for a while will have brightened up their day.
  • Plan a visit to the seaside – do all the things you only do by the sea, collect sea shells, walk along the pier, have cake in a quaint tea shop, run away from the tide and laugh like you’ve never laughed before.
  • Visit a lavender farm – great for a photo opportunity and collecting lavender to make DIY scented bags for your wardrobe.
  • Have a room makeover – paint the walls a different colour, buy some cute cushions, trinkets and prints for the walls. Why not try making your own cushion covers as your new DIY project?
  • Do some gardening – get out in your garden and plant new flowers and bushes. Head to the nearest garden centre where you’ll find everything you need to give your green space some colour. If you live in a flat, why not try a window box or having herb pots in the kitchen.
  • Make up a care package for a friend – know someone who’s not well, has a birthday coming up or generally needs cheering up, put together a few mini treats in a pretty box and send it through the post.
  • Start a Diary – write whatever you want, poems, quotes, essays, your feelings, just let your thoughts run away and be in your own space for a while.
  • Have a pamper night – use that bath oil you’re saving for best, pop on a face mask and paint your toe nails.
  • Watch a new box set – all your friends are talking about it and you’ve been promising to watch it for ages, now’s the time to do it.
  • Listen to a podcast – there are some hilarious ones out there.
  • Plan a girls night out – put on your best dress, do your hair and make up, who cares that it’s only at your local pub
  • Try a new hair style – go on, experiment, dig out those curlers you were given for Christmas but haven’t used yet, learn to French plait or dye your hair a completely different colour.
  • Watch out for wildlife – head out for your nearest woods and document all the wildlife you see, take photos so you can learn what species they are when you get back home.
  • Get out the paddling pool – the children will love splashing around in the water. If you’ve not got little ones, there are some great extra large blow up pools that are perfect for adults on a scorching hot day.
  • De=clutter your wardrobe – set up an Ebay or Depop account to make some extra cash. Just when was the last time you wore that blue sequinned dress?

What will you be doing over the weekend or your day off? Do you have any ideas for me? Let me know in the comments box below.

*please check with health guidelines regarding Covid-19 restrictions and social distancing.

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7 Tips For Getting An Even Self Tan

Applying self tan can be no easy thing. As someone who uses a self tan once a week, I’ve had my fair share of mishaps with areas that look patchy or streaky. First there’s choosing the right type of tanning product, either a mousse, mist or lotion, and that’s before you even get to how to apply it and make your self tan last.

In the years that I’ve been applying self tan in the privacy of my own bathroom I’ve picked up a few tips along the way. If you’re after that lovely even holiday glow then here are a few rules that I follow and it doesn’t usually go far wrong.

1. Exfoliate

It’s important to prep your skin first, especially in the days leading up to applying your self tan. Exfoliating before tanning will help get rid of any dry patches, giving you a more even colour and making your tan last longer.

I gently exfoliate every morning in the shower with an exfoliating glove and I’ve really noticed what a difference it’s made. I also use a body brush or salt scrub to gently exfoliate my skin throughout the winter months when I’m not wearing any tan, this helps keep my skin in good condition for when it is time to start wearing fake tan.

It’s best to shave at least twenty-four hours before and waxing two days before tanning. This allows the pores time to seal over again or any wax residue to be washed away leaving your skin clear.

2. Moisturise

I use a body moisturiser every day so my skin is soft and smooth, this also helps to achieve a much more even colour. There are areas of your body that need a little extra attention, such as elbows, knees and wrists, so I like to apply my daily body moisturiser directly to those parts to avoid them looking muddy when I’ve self tanned.

Youth Boosting Body Butter Sanctuary / Salt Scrub Sanctuary / Coffee Scrub Frank Body / Body Brush Hydrea

3. Application

First of all, never use your bare hands to apply fake tan, that’s just asking for trouble. Using a mitt will not only protect your hands but also give you a more seamless, streak free application. I squeeze one pump of mousse onto the mitt for each section of my body, first the left lower leg, then left thigh, right lower leg, and so on until my whole body is done. I use gentle sweeping motions when applying the product and gently buff in whatever residue is left on the mitt to go over my ankles, feet, elbows and hands.

Always leave yourself enough time to apply your tan, rushing can lead to a tanning disaster. I like to do mine about an hour before I go to bed, that way I don’t rush and it’s had time to dry before I get between the sheets.

Tanning Mousse Vita Liberata / Tanning Mitt Vita Liberata

4. Face

Mix a few drops of gradual face tanning drops into your daily moisturiser or serum and it’ll do all the hard work for you. This will give you a subtle, sun-kissed glow without an orange tinge or any patchiness. Make sure you go right up to the hair line, avoiding your eyebrows as you don’t want those to change colour. If you do get any on your eyebrows, gently wipe over them with a little cleansing water on a cotton pad.

Face Bronzing Water Serum St. Tropez

5. Back

Unless you have someone around who can apply your fake tan to your back for you, this can be the most trickiest part to do. One tip I’ve learnt is to use a tanning mist rather than a mouse and spray it over your shoulder. Then turn the tanning mitt around the other way so the applicator side is on the back of your hand and this will give you more flexibility when it comes to buffing in your self tan.

Fabulous Self Tanning Mist Vita Liberata

Pink Lace Bralette (out of stock) Boux Avenue

Click here for 20% off your first order at Boux Avenue

6. Immediately After Tanning

Give your tan plenty of time to dry and wait around 10 minutes before getting dressed. It’s best to wear loose, dark clothing immediately after a tan, that way you’re less likely to sweat or rub any lines into your freshly applied tan. I find the best material to wear is cotton, that way if any tan does transfer onto your clothes it’s easy to wash out.

A neat little trick I learnt is once your self tan is dry apply a light dusting of baby powder onto areas you’re likely to sweat, especially the inside of your elbow and backs of your knees. It will prevent the sweat from lifting your tan off your skin and causing any staining on your clothes and sheets.

7. Making It Last

Now you’ve perfected the art of applying your tan, you’ll want your golden colour to last more than a day. Try not to have too many hot baths as your tan is more likely to fade a lot quicker. Use a body moisturise every day and gently exfoliate your whole body to get rid of any dry patches, this allows your tan to gradually fade over the week.

Black Exfoliating Glove Glo By Lydia

Have you had any tanning disasters? What are your favourite tips or products for self tanning?

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Getting Comfy with Femme Luxe Loungewear*

We may be starting to ease out of lockdown but I’m not quite ready to give up on wearing comfy loungewear just yet. I love wearing my dresses, but there will always be days when I want to throw on a pair of joggers and t-shirt and curl up with a hot chocolate while reading a good book.

I was super happy with everything I received from Femme Luxe last time, the quality was really good and all the items fitted like a dream. So of course I jumped at the chance when they contacted me again asking if I’d like to try out a few more styles from their loungewear collection.

I knew I’d love this grey loungewear set from the moment I unwrapped it, it’s such an easy style to wear. Both the top and bottoms are soft, lightweight material and perfect for cooler summer days. It’s a slightly more fitted design than the others but loose enough to hide any lumps and bumps. The joggers have an elasticated, high waist and are extremely comfortable. The set is a great staple to have in you’re wardrobe as you can mix and match with items you already have, I’ve styled the joggers with both my oversized slogan t-shirts. I think this grey loungewear set would also make an ideal travel outfit as well as one for around the house.

I was honestly spoilt for choice when deciding which style to go for from their grey loungewear collection. You may want to have a look and see if there are any styles you love too.

For someone who doesn’t normally wear cropped tops, this pink loungewear set has to be my most worn piece out of all the items I’ve chosen. The boxy style top sits just above my waist which is the narrowest part of my body. The wide legged trousers are an extremely flattering style, especially with the high waist and large tie that drapes beautifully over the tummy area (great if you’re not blessed with a super flat tummy like I’m not). I’m wearing it right now as I type up this post and drink my cup of tea. I feel like I’ve got dressed yet I’m as comfy as I would be wearing pyjamas.

Femme Luxe have plenty more styles in their pink loungewear collection if this one isn’t for you.

These white joggers are the same style as the peach ones I featured in last month’s loungewear post and I absolutely love those. A white pair will be more versatile, they’re made of the same ultra soft material and they are extremely comfortable to slouch around in. They have a cuffed hem with an elasticated waist and yes, they have pockets which are just the right size for a secret stash of sweets! They’re a loose fit meaning I’m not restricted in any way when I’m crashed out on the sofa watching my favourite box set.

In the first outfit I’ve styled a white ribbed off the shoulder top with the white joggers for a chic, more pulled together look. This outfit would look great with a pair of ballet pumps if I was popping out in the car to run a few errands.

In the second outfit I’ve styled the white joggers with a grey cropped button up t-shirt that has a tie waist (also from Femme Luxe but currently out of stock). It’s a much more casual look and perfect for days spent curled up on the sofa watching a movie, waiting for that pizza to arrive.

There are plenty of other styles in their joggers collection if white isn’t your thing.

Who doesn’t love an oversized t-shirt for lounging around the house. Slogan t-shirts aren’t usually my thing, but having been so pleased with the quality and fit of the white one I already have I opted for the pink “Bossy” t-shirt this time. I mean, these styles literally go with joggers, shorts or jeans. I’ve been wearing this one over the top of a pair of tiny shorts and it would make a great beach cover up. You’ll be pleased to know that it also comes in white and black if you’re not a fan of pink. It’s a good quality basic that everyone should have in their wardrobe.

All the pieces I’ve chosen can easily be worn with other items I already have in my wardrobe. I now have a designated loungewear drawer under my bed where all the items are in colour order, grey, pink and into cream and white. That way it makes things easy to find and mix and match outfits.

If you are looking for affordable, good quality pieces then honestly, take a look at the Loungewear collection at Femme Luxe.

*these items were kindly gifted to me from Femme Luxe

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Lockdown Life: All The Best Bits From The Last Month

June has been a very colourful month, with everything from food, flowers and fashion. Being at home has also given me the chance to get back into doing hobbies I’d long forgotten about.

So without a long, rambly intro, I shall get straight into telling you about my best bits from June.

One of the most exciting things to happen was my first hour out of the house in almost 14 weeks. It came with mixed emotions, however it did my mental health the world of good. I wore a yellow and pink floral dress for the occasion, just to feel more like myself and took a stroll five minutes down the road to a nearby park. If you’d love to know more about my roller coaster of emotions, I have written a blog post about how it all went: Leaving The House For The First Time.

I had to try the new Magnum Ruby and oh my word it was delicious! I swear they made it pink just for me. Magnum Ruby is a velvety white chocolate icecream with a raspberry sauce swirl and coated in Ruby chocolate. Ruby chocolate tastes both slightly sweet and sour, the last time I had some was a few years ago on a Ruby KitKat. This will be my icecream of choice this summer.

Adrian brought out our telescope so we could spend the warm evenings doing a spot of stargazing. We set it all up just as the sun was setting and I had to take a photo of the gorgeous colour of the sky. By the time it was dark there were clear skies and Adrian connected his camera up to the telescope and took this amazing photo of the moon. We’ve been out a few more times and it’s so exciting seeing stars and planets up in the night’s sky.

Our garden is looking extremely colourful with gorgeous pink flowers in bloom. My favourites are the roses, some of which are the size of saucers, they are so beautiful that Adrian cut me a few to have in a vase on my desk (sorry, it’s not the best photo). We’ve also been enjoying sitting on the patio for lunch, coffee and cake or a cheeky glass of wine in the evening. It’s been wonderful to get some fresh air and listen to the sounds of nature.

I’ve been wearing more summer dresses this month. Don’t get me wrong, I still love lounging around in comfy clothes, but there are times when I’ve just wanted to put on a dress for no particular reason. I fell in love with this blue and cream floral, linen blend dress the first time I wore it. It’s midi length and has a button up front with spaghetti straps, this dress is absolutely perfect for warm summer days.

The second dress I’ve been obsessed with is this beige, broderie mini shirt dress. I love the puff sleeves and delicate buttons which go down to the waist. I think it looks so cute and has a real Zimmerman vibe, it’s 100% cotton and also perfect for warm summer days.

I posted a photo of the puff sleeve dress on my Instagram and was over the moon when River Island featured it on their #ImWearingRI gallery on their website. Naturally I had to take a photo of my computer screen.

Over the last moth I’ve got back into a routine of making a daily smoothie. As well as being super healthy, they’re absolutely delicious and simple to make. I add a banana, a hand full of strawberries or raspberries, a hand full of blueberries, a scoop of peanut butter, a scoop of protein powder and a glass of almond milk. I mix it all together in my Breville Blender for a couple of minutes and hey presto, a deliciously healthy smoothie.

Today is the anniversary of mine and Adrian’s first date. I was 18 when we first met and it took two phone calls from him until I agreed to go out for a drink. I was very nervous but I needn’t have been because Adrian was a complete gentleman. We went to The Anchor Pub in our home town, where we’d both been drinking many times before with our own groups of friends. It was a few years until he proposed and we were married in the April.

Tonight we will be celebrating with a bottle of wine and a takeaway pizza. The pubs have reopened today after many months of Lockdown but sadly we won’t be going out to celebrate, I think it’s still safer for me to stay at home, apart from an hours stroll to the park.

Have you started a new hobby or gone back to doing one you loved before? Have you had a celebration while under Lockdown? If so, what sort of thing did you do?

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Lockdown Life: Leaving The House For The First Time

In almost 14 weeks I’ve been shielded from the outside world and the threat of Coronavirus. I’m someone who likes to get out and explore or meet up with friends, but I also spend long periods of time at home due to a disability, just not quite this long. Over the last few months I’ve felt even more isolated than I normally do. I’d been keeping up to date with the news and events on social media for any signs of life getting back to normal. Time went by and I got use to being in my safe bubble called home.

Last week the news was announced that people who were being shielded could leave their homes for an hour a day and my reaction wasn’t quite the one I’d expected. I thought I’d be jumping for joy, instead I went into panic mode and my anxiety went through the roof. I wasn’t ready to go rushing out the front door and in to the big wide world, after all there was still a risk of catching the coronavirus.

Finally, on Saturday 13th June I plucked up the courage to leave the house for a short stroll down the road and back. All the time I was getting ready I could feel my anxiety rising and almost changed my mind. Looking back, I’m glad I made it past the garden gate because it did my mental health the world of good.

I’d decided to take a stroll to the nearest park with a flask of coffee and take some outfit shots, thinking that would give me something good to focus on.

But I got half way there and froze. My pulse was racing and it felt like someone had their hands around my neck, all because a woman showed a simple act of kindness. She was coming in the opposite direction and moved far enough into a drive way to let me get past.

I was faced with the new reality and it made me feel utterly disoriented. If you’ve ever watched the start of 28 Days Later or The Walking Dead when the main character comes out of the hospital and sees the world after the virus has taken hold, then you’ll know exactly how I felt.

Thankfully I didn’t give up, we took a slow stroll around the edge of the park, stopping at a couple of benches along the way. Luckily it was fairly quiet and people kept at least two metres away. I gradually became acclimatised to the environment I once took for granted. It was wonderful to hear the sounds of life again.

Adrian and I found a quiet corner with some large rocks which were perfect for me to lay down my blanket and have a few photos taken. The sun was shining down on us as I sipped the coffee I’d taken with me, honestly I felt so happy and relaxed.

I’ve not been out again yet, I know it won’t be easy the next time but I’ve done it once and I’m proud of myself for taking those first steps.

Dress Miss Selfridge / Bag Henrietta Spencer / Bracelet Missoma / Beach Towel Urbanara / Shoes (old) River Island / Hat (old) Jolly Brown’s Vintage Boutique

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