My Everyday Makeup Routine

So this is more of a blog post for me than it probably is for anybody else as I am a total makeup FANGIRL!

This does not mean, in any way, that I know what I’m doing, or indeed that I’m any good at it. However, this is one of my favourite types of blog/ vlog posts as it’s a great way to see new and unknown makeup, as well as learn some new tips and techniques.

Personally, I don’t think I wear a lot of makeup and although this is my “Everyday” look, I don’t actually wear it everyday. I like to let my skin breathe and recuperate but more importantly, sometimes I just can’t be bothered.

However, when I am feeling up to it, this is the look that I go for when I’m in a rush, heading out to a casual social engagement, or just wanting to look less like the walking dead and more like a person who’s got at least a small handle on her life.

It may seem like a lot of products and tools, but trust me when I say this is the bare minimum in comparison to what I use for a night out!

Also, and more importantly, the majority of these products are for my base, and if I’ve learned nothing else in my 32 years, I have learned that in order to keep my makeup from falling off my grease ridden face at 5pm after a long day of errands and running after my son, it is necessary to make sure my base is flawless.

So in order of their use, here are each of my products of choice:

1. Laura Geller Spackle Primer.

IMG_3909

2. Tarte Amazonian Clay & Foundation Brush.

3. Nars Creamy Concealer & Real Techniques Buffing Brush & Sponge.

4. BodyShop Powder, Real Techniques Powder Brush & Laura Mercier Setting Powder

5. Bourjois Bronzing Powder & Wilkos Powder Brush.

6. MUA Blusher.

IMG_3930

7. Benefit Brow Pencil, Brow Set & Brow Tones.

IMG_3923

8. Mac Highlighter & Makeup Revolution Angled Brush.

9. Tarte Mascara.

IMG_3913

After a few years of this being my go-to everyday look, I have got the application time down to a mere 10 minutes, which if you’re in a rush is ideal.

As I said before, I am no expert and so other people will of course be able to do a much much much better job than me. However the end result of this 10 minute process is more than worth it for me and I reckon it is for my husband too, as having to look at my death-like complexion on a daily basis can’t be an easy or pleasant thing to do after all these years.

36354481003_ce5f4cb5d8_o

Advertisements

BritMums – #HealthyRedMeat Challenge

So as most followers of this blog will know, I am the mummy of a very boisterous toddler. He is the light of my life, the apple of my eye and all that nice stuff. But he is also a very challenging little monkey.

34214134710_a884b91079_o

He has several Sensory issues and as I’ve shared many times before, we are currently going through the ‘Autism Diagnosis Process’. Because of this he has quite a severe aversion to textures and in particular certain foods that aren’t smooth. He eats well in the sense that he will eat as much of something that he loves (like mash potato and fish fingers) but to this day he still really struggles with any sort of meat, particularly red meat.

This is a worry not only in the sense that his diet isn’t very varied, but also because he is missing out on all of the goodness that comes from red meat like potassium and iron.

He already gets daily doses of vitamins for all of his other deficiencies and the idea of adding in, for example, iron or zinc supplements is just an absolute headache.

Like everything else is at one point, red meat has recently been the subject of scrutiny in the media, and experts fear that the nutritional benefits have been overshadowed by misleading negative views. For this reason, and in order to improve the public perception, the Meat Advisory Panel, is partnering with BritMums to promote red meat in the diets of toddlers and young children, as well as shedding some light on the benefits of it in all our diets.

So, when BritMums got in touch to tell me about the challenge I thought “Yeah ok, let’s give it a try”!

They sent through a gift voucher, which we were to use for purchasing our ingredients for a family friendly red meat dinner.

I chose Pork, simply because it’s soft enough that Matthew could swallow without any issues and light enough in colour that he wouldn’t necessarily notice it mixed in amongst the other elements of his meal.

I wracked my brain for ideas using Lean Pork Mince and came up with a twist on an old classic dish… Sweet Potato & Pork Cottage Pie.

I know that both Matthew and my husband love Sweet Potato and felt like it was the best way to get some extra goodness into the dish without Matthew noticing.

So with my Pork, Sweet Potatoes, Carrots & an Onion I set off on the challenge of a lifetime… getting my toddler to eat a meal without gagging, throwing a tantrum or simply launching his plate across the room.

I used a few extra ingredients to make it all taste delicious which I’ll list here, as well as my cooking method:

  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Garlic
  • Paprika
  • Balsamic Vinegar
  • Thyme
  • Pork Stock Cube
  • Dairy Free Spread (Matthew has a Dairy intolerance) – which i used to add to the mashed sweet potato. 
  1. I chopped and fried off some onions in a pan, using Sunflower Zero Calorie spray.
  2. Once the onions were translucent I added salt & pepper and then the pork mince.
  3. I browned the mince for about 5-7 minutes and added paprika, thyme and garlic.
  4. I then added a melted pork stock cube, dissolved in 300ml of boiling water to the mince and onions, added chopped carrots and set the hob to a simmering temperature.
  5. I let this simmer gently for 20 minutes.
  6. This is when I added my peeled Sweet Potatoes to boiling water for 20 minutes.
  7. After 20 minutes I added my mince mixture to a ramekin and topped it with mashed sweet potato.
  8. This went in the oven for a further 20 minutes to cook through and crisp the top.

IMG_3941

Easy peasy and super yummy, even if I do say so myself. But the best part… Both my hubby and my fussy little boy finished every last bite of it!

IMG_3947

In fact, it was so successful that since testing out the recipe, I have made it a further 3 times, with some of my family even requesting the recipe from me.

Saying I am one happy mummy is quite simply the understatement of the century!

“This post is an entry for the BritMums #HealthyRedMeat, sponsored by the Meat Advisory Panel.”

Discharged…

I feel very strange writing this post this morning. It’s almost surreal to me that these words are even real but Matthew has officially been discharged from the Chronic Lung Clinic.

8

We had our LAST EVER Chronic Lung appointment at the hospital on Friday with his amazing consultant and after examining Matthew and thoroughly assessing him, he was satisfied that he no longer needs to see him, and can pass him over to the Paediatric Asthma Clinic.

50

This is one of many clinics Matthew has been attending since he was discharged from hospital, and to be honest, as far as his overall health goes, this was the most serious of all his clinics. So to hear, straight from the doctors mouth, that Matthew is well enough and strong enough within himself that he no longer needs to attend this clinic, is just music to our ears.

63.5

Michael and I are both very proud of how far our boy has come since he was born. He has quite literally made his way from being fully ventilated and unable to breathe for himself, to right now at this very moment where he is running around the livingroom, unaided by any breathing equipment and unaware of just how amazing he is.

94a

Developmentally, it’s an entirely different story – but as long as I know my boy is strong and able to fight off any illnesses that come his way with minimal medical support, I am one very happy mummy.

124

Let’s smash the next big milestone my boy!

IMG_3254


Tili Box – First Impressions

I’ve written a post about the amazing Tili Boxes before and thought I’d give you a short but sweet rundown of all the goodies from the new Fifth Edition box, and give a fuller, more in depth review once I’ve had the opportunity to try it all.

It is once again jam packed full of wonderful high end beauty products, some of which I am already a fan of.

IMG_3881

Here is a breakdown of all the individual products:

  • 1 x Elemis Papaya Enzyme Peel (15ml) – a creamy, exfoliating formula to revitalise the look of lacklustre skin and leave your complexion looking bright and feeling soft. Enriched with natural fruit enzymes of papaya and pineapple, plus vitamin E and marine algae
  • 1 x Bareminerals Gen Nude Matte Liquid Lipcolour (4ml) in Juju – deep rosy mauve. A creamy full-coverage lip colour with primer-infused formula, that gives a gorgeous satin-matte finish
  • 1 x Gatineau Floracil Plus Gentle Eye Make-Up Remover (118ml) – a fragrance-free eye make-up remover that helps to instantly removes even waterproof mascara and heavy-duty eyeshadow and eyeliner to leave your eye area and lashes feeling smooth and conditioned. Infused with aloe vera, witch hazel and vitamin E. Ophthalmologist tested, and suitable for sensitive eyes and contact lens wearers
  • 1 x Shay & Blue Blood Orange eau de parfum (10ml) – a rich, refreshing fragrance with bursts of citrus underpinned with an opulent and sensual blend of musk, woods and leather, Top note: blood orange; heart: hot napa leather; base notes: musk, charred woods and amber
  • 1 x Caudalie Vinoperfect Radiance Serum (10ml) – a lightweight satin-feel formula designed to reduce the appearance of dark spots, even skin tone and boost your skin’s radiance to leave your complexion looking brighter and glowing
  • 1 x L’Occitane Almond Supple Skin Oil (15ml) – applied as a spray, this lightweight formula melts into the skin to leave your skin feeling smooth, supple and soft. Enriched with over 50% almond oil, plus camelina oil
  • 1 x Perfect Formula Pink Gel Coat (18ml) – creates a thick, protein-rich coating to help to maintain your nails’ natural strength, with a pink tint to bring out the colour in your nail for an enhanced finish
  • 1 x Tarte Rainforest of the Sea Color Splash Lipstick (1g) in Colada – peachy-brown nude. A moisture-rich, long-lasting lipstick that gives full, creamy coverage
  • 1 x Rituals The Ritual of Sakura Foaming Shower Gel (50ml) – a rich gel that transforms into a creamy foam upon contact with water to gently cleanse your skin and leave it delicately fragranced with the uplifting scent of cherry blossom

 

So there you have it lovelies. All of these goodies for the incredibly reasonable price of £20, straight from QVC.

Keep your eyes peeled for an in depth review of all the products coming very soon.


Through The Lens – August Best Bits

As I’ve mentioned before, I am a photographer and I honestly love my job so any opportunity to pick up the camera and snap away is taken, no questions asked!

August was super busy and exciting for us and so I thought I’d share some of my favourite images, taken over the course of the month.

IMG_3437

I’m a sucker for a flower shot & always have fresh flowers in the house so perfect opportunity to get a shot like this! Seriously… How pretty are Roses???

IMG_3487

We enjoyed a day out at the park on the 5th of August when it was unusually warm.

IMG_3497

My boy and his daddy, as usual, were joined at the hip!

IMG_3542

My super handsome nephew started Primary School in August. Proud Aunty moment indeed!

IMG_3770

This is a random one but I wanted to show off my new print… Rose Gold, Marble, a cute little Succulent plant & Coffee… It really doesn’t get much better than this!

IMG_3572

The biggest and most excting part of the month was when my beautiful little Prince turned 2!

IMG_3697

I couldn’t be prouder of this little warrior for everything he has and continues to overcome.

IMG_3700

He is the best thing I’ve ever done in my life!

IMG_3776

And coming full circle, I’m ending on a pretty image of some roses I had on  my desk… Colourful, fragrant & so much fun to photograph.


A Battle With My Brain – Are they working yet?

A few weeks ago I wrote about my experience with anxiety.

It’s a fairly new concept to me and so it’s not something I’ve been able to get on board with 100% yet.

I visited my GP and he was wonderful. We spoke & he prescribed me a minimal dosage Anti-Depressant. It’s been almost 8 weeks on them now and despite there being a few minor improvements, nothing else has really gotten any better.

My sleep issues have certainly become a less frequent problem and most nights I am able to fall asleep without too much time spent staring at the ceiling. As well as this I have found that my emotions have been kept much more at bay. I could usually cry several times a day, at adverts, tv shows, my son smiling… you name it! But I’ve found that since starting this course of medication, that this isn’t really happening that often, which if I’m being completely honest has made me really sad.

I didn’t want help to fix that part of me. I’ve lived comfortably with that aspect of my personality for years now and it was a part of me that my husband and my family often found the most endearing. I feel like it was the compassionate part of me that displayed my emotional side so openly, and now I feel like I’m losing that.

The part I wanted to get rid of, the heart-wrenching, gut-wrenching, soul-wrenching pain and anxiety, is still there…

Lesser so…

But still holding on with both hands in the dark background of my mind. I just wonder if I go back to my GP and tell him this, that he will want to increase my dosage and I will not only have given in to my anxiety entirely, but I’ll lose every emotional aspect of my personality entirely!

How do you know what to do in a situation like that?

Is it my overall mental well-being that is the priority or the parts of my brain that make me who I am???

I honestly don’t know… And it is such a conflict and inner turmoil I feel right now.


Speech & Language Therapy – Next Goal

We have been having lots of success with Matthews Song Bag and so we had another therapy session with Laura so that she could see the progress that Matthew has been making for herself.

She was really pleased and has once again given us our next task, and this one is definitely a little daunting for Michael and I.

It is to engage with him in an activity of our choosing and encourage him throughout the activity to maintain eye contact.

Now the reason I say this is daunting is because Michael and I have been doing this with Matthew for a long time… Maybe not as wholeheartedly as we should, but definitely on a daily basis… and with no success.

He is very much a single-minded boy when it comes to play time and he puts all of his focus on the game itself, as opposed to us. For example, if we play with him using a ball, he will focus 100% on the ball. If we read him a book, he will focus 100% on getting that book out of my hands and into his (he’s not really interested in the story-telling aspect at the minute). If we are painting, he will focus 100% on the paint that is all over his hands and get angry that I would do such a terrible and inhumane thing to him. The joys!

So after our therapy session, my hubby and I got our thinking caps on and discussed what games and activities we thought might be the ONE!

It was a long and arduous discussion, but we came up with 2 ideas.

The first was using a ball (Matthews absolute favourite toy in the whole world) and spinning it on the floor for Matthew to watch and then retrieve. We would pick up the ball, ask Matthew if he was “Ready?” which would initiate the eye contact, count “One, Two, Three” demanding eye contact throughout, and then spin the ball.

After about half an hour of trying this, Matthew began to realise what the game was and started bringing the ball to us.

We’ve been doing this for 4 days now and he will maintain eye contact for the “Ready?” part… But this is where he then focuses on the ball again.

It’s baby steps, but even in such a short space of time we still have a small degree of progress.

The second option involved a song, which I’m not entirely sure isn’t cheating a bit, but nonetheless we felt it was worth a try.

We would sit on the edge of the couch with Matthew standing on the floor facing us, holding his hands, and sing “We’re jumping up & down”, encouraging him to jump along with the song and look at us while he does it.

Again, it’s been 4 days since we started trying this, and he has responded pretty well to the activity. He maintains eye contact with us for the first line of the song and then proceeds to watch his feet move up and down on the floor.

We are delighted with both of these activities, and feel like a few more weeks dedicated to the task at hand will produce much better results.

We want to be able to make this part of his therapy as fun as possible, because being a toddler, he’s not very interested in anything that won’t benefit him in this way, so the more fun the activity the better.

I am also delighted to say that his Special Needs class starts back today so I expect that this alone will encourage lots more positive behaviours from him and I will happily report back all of that in these updates.