My Desk

25 February 2015

Since I graduated in July 2012, my desk has been acting as a makeup application station. However, I recently made the decision that at some point in the next eighteen months I'd like to take myself back to university, and in an effort to begin preparations, I started collecting items to make my desk more 'desky'.
I started off with a H&M order, which included this toothbrush mug (£4.99) for my pens, and a couple of these wire baskets (£7.99). One of the baskets now houses my skin care on top of my muji drawers, and the other is the perfect size for all of my washi tape, stickers and other craft items which I use for my Project Life scrapbook. H&M have a great selection of homeware, so I'd definitely recommend checking them out if you're looking to update your space on a budget.

The next purchase was my lamp (£24.99) from Homebase. In case you hadn't guessed, I'm loving the copper theme that's everywhere at the moment, so this lamp was the perfect addition to my desk. In the evening I really enjoy reading at my desk, as the lamp throws out just enough light without seeming too artificial. I bought the To Do pad in Tesco, and the sections are really useful for maintaining a blogging/work/life divide.
Whilst I'm waiting for some shelves to be put up above my desk, my Tsum Tsum are currently stacked up next to my to do list!
Overall I've spent around £70 on updating my desk, but it now fits with my room perfectly, and feels like somewhere that I could get some serious studying done. I don't have the most space in the world, but I can comfortably work off my Macbook with a book or two by the side, so that's perfect for me! I haven't entirely given up my beauty space however; my Muji drawers are still stacked up in the corner. So, if I ever fancy a break from revision, there's always the option of a lipstick swatching session.

What I Bought In Disneyland Paris

22 February 2015

 I'm currently working my way through my 900+ photographs from my trip to DLP to post on the blog, so I thought that in the mean time I'd share my holiday purchases. I watched plenty of Disneyland hauls before I went but struggled to find any blog posts, so hopefully this will be helpful to a few people. I was on a fairly limited budget as I'm trying to save as much spending money as possible for Florida, but in total I spent around €110 (including gifts for other people which aren't pictured).

My first purchase of the holiday was the holographic Disney Dreams notebook (€7.99). I knew that I wanted this as soon as I saw it, and think it might become my new blog planning book. I absolutely adore the Disney Dreams show, on my last two trips to Disneyland seeing it has been the highlight of each holiday. On our final night I took loads of photos of the show and fireworks, so purchased the Dreams photo album (€19.99) to store them in. There's a button on the front and when you press it, lights go off to make it look as if the fireworks are exploding, which of course I love.
Frozen mania seemed to have hit everywhere in DLP, so I bought myself this Olaf pin (€6.99) to add to my lanyard. There were loads of nice pins that I could've treated myself to, but I decided that I'd rather wait and buy a couple more in Florida. I couldn't say no to Olaf though, and it's becoming a bit of a tradition for me to buy a pin each trip! Another item which always makes its way home with me is Disney chocolate. It's my absolute favourite, so I stocked up on character chocolate coins (€2.99) to have as a treat every now and then.
The one area of merchandise which I was a little disappointed with in Disneyland was the princess selection. Everything was Frozen mad, and every other princess (including Ariel, my favourite) seemed to be a little neglected. I did get a princess pen (€2.99) though, to go with my new notebook, and the adorable princess heart (€5.99) for my handbag, which folds out to be a handy mirror and hair brush. My little sister got me the princess postcard (€2) for my scrapbook, as it reminded her of the Dreams show that we both loved so much.
My final two purchases of the holiday are possibly my favourites. I absolutely love the Nightmare Before Christmas, and was really pleased to see so much merchandise related to the film. There was lots that I could've bought, but in the end I went for these beautifully illustrated playing cards (€12.99). I'm very competitive, so I'm sure I'll get lots of use out of them! Finally, just before we left Disney Village on our last night, my Mum spotted the Mickey Mouse backpack (€29.99). I'd been using a backpack of my brothers for the parks and had said that I needed to buy one for Florida, so this is perfect. I absolutely love the print on it, although I'm a little terrified that it'll end up filthy by the end of the holiday! It's nicely padded, so it'll be great for carrying around my camera and plenty of water.
I'm really happy with all of my holiday purchases. Normally I can tend to go a little overboard with Disney merchandise (especially mugs, I'm a mug fiend and don't even drink hot drinks!), but this trip I chose to buy myself gifts which I'll get plenty of use out of. Lets see if that restraint holds up for Florida...

January 2015 Scrapbook Page

18 February 2015

After seeing an instagram post by Lily Pebbles featuring her 2014 scrapbook, it quickly became a New Years Resolution to start one for 2015. I've got so many exciting events this year (immediate family members turning 50, 21 and 18 within the first three months, my DLP holiday and my Florida holiday to name a few), that I really wanted to keep a visual record of everything. So, armed with copious rolls of wash tape and my Project Life folder, here's the January page that I've put together.
On January 1st 2015, my Mum turned the grand old age of 50. It was a lovely way to kick off the New Year, we went out for a meal in the day and then had a party with family and friends - and those amazing Westie cakes! - in the evening. I saved a little bit of the silver ribbon which I wrapped Mum's presents up with, and stuck it in my scrapbook using double sided sticky tape, along with photographs.
After the excitement of Christmas and New Year, January calmed down a little until the middle of the month, when I went down to London for the day with my Dad to a Sherlock Holmes exhibition at the Museum of London. We're both huge Sherlock fans, so I bought the tickets for my Dad as a birthday present at the end of last year. The exhibition was really brilliant, and the day was perfect, with a delicious lunch at Palm Court Brasserie in Covent Garden, and then a stroll down Carnaby Street in the evening before our train home.  It was a great day out and one of the highlights of my month, so I've included my exhibition and train tickets, as well as a card from the restaurant and a couple of photographs as a memento. The rest of January was a fairly quiet affair, although I couldn't resist snapping a few Polaroids of the snow at the end of the month.

I'm really pleased with my first attempt at scrapbooking, and I think that the different sizes of photographs and tickets together, along with the washi tape, look really pretty. I'm already excited to put together my February page as so many exciting things have happened so far this month, and I love how therapeutic it feels to work on a page. After spending most of the day staring at a screen, it's lovely to have a creative outlet once a month, and I can't wait to see the finished book at the end of the year.

My Weight Loss Jars: 18lbs Lost

15 February 2015

I mentioned in my first post of 2015 that I was on a little bit of a mission to lose weight. I'm aiming to shed around six stone in total before my Florida holiday (I leave on September 1st!), so I decided that I wanted something visual to keep me motivated.

After seeing photographs of weight loss jars on pinterest, I decided to make my own. I used chalkboard stickers to label old jam jars, and chopped up some pretty straws that I had spare to use as counters. The gold striped straws are the equivalent of one stone, and the pink ones are worth one pound in weight.

So far since January 2nd I've lost a grand total of eighteen pounds, hence why there's one (hiding) gold straw and four pink straws in my 'lbs lost' jar. I find it so motivating to be able to move a straw or two across when I weigh myself on a Friday morning, and trading my first fourteen pinks for a gold felt like a great achievement. I've got a long way to go, but having these little jars has so far really helped me to stay on track. Fingers crossed my next update will be hitting the two stone mark!

Packing for Disneyland Paris

11 February 2015

As you read this, I'll be enjoying my last day at my favourite place on earth, Disneyland Paris. I've visited more times than I can remember (I'm guessing around the 20 mark), so I like to consider myself a bit of a seasoned DLP packer. Here are my top four tips for if you're planning to visit during the Winter months:

1. Pack for the cold. Yes, it might seem a bit obsessive to be taking Piglet slippers on holiday with you, but after a day walking round in the freezing cold weather you'll thank me for this one. At the very least, think layers (your scarf and hat can come off in an indoor queueing area or store, but will be much needed whilst you're stood watching a parade) and socks. As a crazy Disney fan I require all of my trip socks to be themed, and I'd highly recommend Primark for stocking up on Disney Winter warmers.

2. Pack a spare camera battery. The whole of Disneyland is one giant photo opportunity, so trust me, you'll be snapping a lot. On this trip I've armed myself with my iPhone camera, my Fujifilm Instax Mini 8 and my Canon EOS-M, with a huge memory card and back up battery. I'm always determined to capture as many happy memories as I can when I visit the park!

3. Pack miniatures and gift sets. On past holidays I've carted practically my entire makeup collection with me, but this time I'm saving room in my case to bring back a Tsum Tsum or ten. This NARS offering is perfect as it covers all of my cheek needs (blush, bronzer and highlighter) in one small palette, and the miniature Urban Decay lipsticks are not only adorable, but also mean I can pack a selection of shades without taking up too much room. Plus, it would be rude to be within a hundred mile radius of Paris and not sport a red lip at some point.

4. Pack your Minnie ears! If you're lucky enough to have visited a Disney park before and have purchased merchandise previously (a half filled autograph book, a pin trading lanyard or Minnie ears, for example), remember to pop them in your hand luggage before you go. They'll cost a fortune to replace once you're over there, and as much as I love Disney, even I struggle with the thought of shelling out almost €40 for two sets of identical Minnie Mouse ears.

2015

8 February 2015


Just when you thought that the onslaught of "Hello 2015!" posts were out of the way, here I am with a late addition…

2014 was a long old year. Not to dwell on the negatives but I lost loved ones, was in and out of hospital and fell out of love with blogging. It wasn't all bad of course: I changed jobs (twice) and made new friends in the process, went on another amazing holiday to Las Vegas, saw Wicked for the first time and had a lovely family Christmas.

When I woke up on 1st January 2015, it was with a whole new attitude. I was determined to be positive, to not let my illness get in the way of life, and have a happy, healthy year. So far, it's all looking good! Despite needing two courses of antibiotics in January, this time I didn't let my HS get me down and combined plenty of rest with a positive mental attitude. which resulted in a speedier than usual recovery. I made the decision to lose (a lot of) weight for Florida, and five weeks in to my healthy eating I've so far lost 18lbs. I feel generally happier, I've got so much to look forward to and I'm proud of my progress so far.

When I sat and reflected on my blog and how un-interested I'd become in it, one of the realisations I made was that beauty was no longer as massive an interest as it had once been. Although I still love to get dolled up for special occasions, it stopped being an every day thing, and I developed other hobbies, which I'd like to feature on the blog as well. I really got in to crafting towards the end of the year and I've started a scrapbook for 2015, so I'll hopefully be featuring some more crafty posts. I've always been a huge Disney fan, so I thought it was about time that I started sharing that passion. As I mentioned above, weight loss is now a key part of my life, so expect to see regular updates on that too.

So there you have it. The beauty posts will be staying, but I'll compliment them with more lifestyle-y content as well. I'm in the process of having a pretty major blog overhaul done, so bear with me whilst that takes place. Once that's done, I'm hoping to get back in to a blogging schedule of new posts up every Wednesday and Sunday, but we'll see how it goes. For now though, I'd just like to wish everyone a belated Happy New Year, and say a big thank you to everyone who's stuck around during my length absence.

Josie
xxx

P.S. I've scheduled this post as I'm currently in Disneyland Paris, so expect to be bombarded with Disney posts very soon!