Sunday, 31 August 2014

Sunday Weigh-in: Back on Track

This week has been a bit more normal, hectic but normal. It was a bank holiday on the Monday so I didn't reach my steps, it was also a rest day so I watched my calorie intake. The rest of the week was a normal work one which means at least I get plenty of steps in.

Exercise wise, although I've still been producing more snot than I ever imagined would be possible I have been keeping to my usual routine of Monday and Friday rest days and Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday exercising. Plus I've stuck to the exercising at the weekend, HIIT on Saturday and Yogalates on Sunday. I've aimed for 5,000 steps each day at the weekend but haven't quite made it, currently at 3,000 today and unlikely to make up the rest but will hopefully get a few more hundred in.

I've been noticing some positive changes, more energy for one which is great as I do still take Tramadol and I've been worrying that I'll never have energy without taking it. I'm down to 1-3 tablets a day and haven't started to feel more tired because of this. My calves are also shaping up nicely which has been one of the reasons for extra pilates sessions - I honestly think it's the best thing to achieve shapely pins. Another positive I want to focus on is that I can't remember a week when I haven't done some form of exercise, the previous week when I had fl was close but I still at least worked out one day.

Food wise I haven't been doing badly, everything balanced out. This week we've had kale twice, I love it, plus I've gone back to adding celeriac to my mashed potato which is just delicious! Hopefully I'll get around to making four fresh meals this week.

Next week I'm hoping for more freshly cooked meals. Kale will certainly be making an appearance again!

It's so nice to have Samhain about to fuss over and run around after, that certainly adds to my steps.

Short Term Goals
Still looking towards that Autumn/Winter wardrobe!

Long Term 
Holiday should come under this, a nice holiday with a new wardrobe by this time net year. I also want to be a lot fitter.

Saturday, 30 August 2014

Barry M Natural Glow Palette Review and Swatch

I do feel greedy with the amount of eye palettes I have right now, I have all of the Barry M palettes, I haven't enough eyelids for all these shades but I can deal with it. I've had this palette itself for ages but the shades are more suitable for the colder weather so I've been holding off on reviewing it/using it.

Now although the theme of this palette is natural glow the browns in this are pretty dark, not a criticism but it has meant I've not really tried it until now. There is a lovely selection of shades of brown to use, combine, build with. A smoky night time look is just as easy as a basic light brown day look, the cream is good for highlighting under the brow and in the corners. The pink blusher is quite bright for me, a lighter version would be more suiting for me but it's easy to use sparingly and it also makes a nice eye shade or highlighter.

Each shade on my skin

I find even though the palettes are  low cost the eyeshadows are long lasting, they're easy to blend and smell perfectly fine. I would have loved these sets as a teenager, everything that was low cost back then seemed to either not last or smell really weird. Although I'm now in my thirties and have a bit more cash to spend on my make-up I really don't think I need to spend the extra money on eye palettes as this one does the job.

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

What's in my Glossybox? August 2014 - 3rd Birthday Box

*I started this post  a week ago - before I came down with flu, so it's a bit late but I just had to finish it*

I do love my beauty boxes so I'm rather sad to say that this will be my last Glossybox - heartbreaking to be finishing on its third birthday. I'll still receive one beauty box a month and I've decided to go with Birchbox. I will also be receiving another box, just not a beauty box, something different and not exactly for me so you'll have to wait and see what it is.

I'm glad to say we're at least parting on good terms and leaving on a high, this box isn't a disappointment so at least I'll remember them fondly. So what did I get? It's all after the cut!

Monday, 25 August 2014

Sunday Weigh-in: The Week That Didn't Happen

I'm sure last week was the week I was supposed to get everything back on track after weeks of being super busy, that really didn't happen! Not that it was supposed to be a quiet lazy week apart from exercise, I was always planning to do a car boot sale on Sunday and I needed to sort out a little bit each night. Anyway, I'll keep it brief but here is what happened last week.

Monday fine, normal, as usual this was my rest day but I got my steps up close to 10,000. Tuesday, another normal day both eating and walking wise - my steps were pretty impressive today, although at this point I thought my hayfever was giving me hell. I carried on and did some exercise by the time I go to bed I realise that it isn't actually hayfever so I get an early night. Wednesday I feel rotten, I drag myself to work but don't last long, on the way home I grab some groceries (to make potato ash without the meat so just potatoes, carrots and onions!), medicine and ricola to soothe my throat. By the time I was home I was just laid up in bed, Thursday even worse and the same Friday so nothing was tracked at all, well footsteps were but I know they were well below 10,000 although I did need the loo a lot! To be honest I felt so rubbish with flu that I just didn't and don't care.

More annoyingly I didn't get the chance to sort out the car boot stuff so I dedicated Saturday to sorting out goods to sell on Sunday. It wasn't just time that was an issue but I was still feeling very run down, snotty, sore and with a cough so I was doing things in stages which took all day. As I was doing a car boot on Sunday I decided to write the week off, not that I'd been bad,food had been basic not exciting so most things would have fitted in apart from the cough sweets, my throat was so sore and dry if I wasn't drinking something I was sucking on them, plus I was having lucozade so that might have broke the bank but it was a week of being ill.

So this week will be normal and I'll be sticking to today (Monday) being my rest day as I'm not completely better yet so it will be nice to go and crawl back into bed and rest so that I can back in full form for the rest of the week!

Short Term Goals
I was going to say it would be nice to have a week where I manage 10,000 steps every day but I think to be more realistic I should instead aim for 70,000 total a week that way I allow for life's little ups and downs. 

Long Term Goals (Same as last week)
Looking towards fitting into something nice at Halloween and around Christmas time.

Monday, 18 August 2014

Sunday Weigh-in: A Day Late - Not For the First Time!

Another week that felt like it was over before it begun. It was a good week for pretty much everything. I didn't exercise as much as possible as we were staying at James mums place at the weekend which I always knew would happen. What I hadn't planned was Tuesday night, Samhain had only been with us three weeks but we've all bonded, he seems settled plus the microchip confirmation came through the other week so he was allowed out. Immediately after I started to panic though so a few minutes after he was allowed out I was pacing up and down the streets! I shouldn't have worried and an hour later he strutted back in as if it was no big thing. Needless today by 7 I was shattered and showering rather than exercising but the bonus was I managed extra steps.

Friday was particularly good as I had a physical task on at work and Saturday was over 10.000 thanks to being out. Now Sunday I didn't manage 10,000 although I'm quite surprised. We had a trip out and after a couple of hours walking around I was surprised to see only just 2,000 so I'm not sure what went wrong there!

Food we've been fine but I'm looking towards doing more proper cooking. I have three plans this week, I haven't got a recipe in mind but I'm not worried, I usually wing it.

Tonight we have chilli-non-carne, either tomorrow or Wednesday we'll go for halloumi and bean salad and Thursday I plan to do Tofu in a garlic, ginger and spring onion sauce! I do like cooking as I'm starting to feel better and more active I'll start to cook more but the only problem is fitting it in, we don't have much time to ourselves as it is, once I've exercised, showered, found some time after my parents have finished cooking it is usually time for bed!

Not much exercise last week but this week will be different - although I plan to sort through all my stuff ready for a car boot sale on Sunday, hopefully, so this week will be different too!

Short Term Goals
I was going to say it would be nice to have a week where I manage 10,000 steps every day but I think to be more realistic I should instead aim for 70,000 total a week that way I allow for life's little ups and downs.  I'm off work on Friday to finish sorting everything out for the car boot and although I'll be busy I might not get the steps in on what is usually my rest day but I will be busy and active. 

Long Term Goals
Looking towards fitting into something nice at Halloween and around Christmas time.

Thursday, 14 August 2014

What's in my Birchbox? August 2014

Thanks to my Birchbox purchases early this month it really doesn't seem that long since my last Birchbox, of course this is different. The theme of the August box is summer holidays, sadly I won't be going anywhere so I have to instead enjoy this bundle in the glorious, wet, windy and cold British weather we're experiencing at the moment - which I actually prefer.

So what did I get? It's all after the cut.

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Mario Badescu Drying Mask Review

Mario Badescu Drying Mask £17.95 for 60ml

Now we all love a good face mask, not much beats sitting in a bath with a beautifully scented mask on to unwind after a hard day but this isn't that type of mask. This mask is much more of a treatment mask, it's here to do a task and it isn't tarted up.

Even the packaging says clinical, not that it isn't stylish, the font shows class and it's the type of product you'd want to see on your bathroom shelf. The product itself, well to look at it in the tub it looks rather like a nice mud mask, so somewhat like melted chocolate ice cream. The smell however is not at all chocolate like, it really does stink, you can guess it has some kind of sulphur in it - hence my face in the following photo.

You get used to the smell somewhat plus this isn't the type of mask you would apply all over your face, instead it is to be applied solely on the problem areas. Right now for me that is my nose and chin so that is where I've concentrated on. I left it on for 20 minutes before rinsing off, immediately my skin felt different, it felt dry without being tight, it felt soft. 

I continued to use this product for a three times a week over a three week period. I've noticed a subtle but impressive overall difference, my skin is drier which for me is great, I have rather oily skin, hormone problems don't help neither does the hot weather so this is what I want. My skin is still soft but not overly oily most of the time, I've had problems with blemishes thanks to tablets I've had to started to take again but overall my skin is looking clearer. I don't think I could ask for any more and will continue to be using this a couple of times a week. 

Sunday, 10 August 2014

Sunday Weigh-in: No Diary, Again!

When I first started to do the diary entries I thought they would save me time and I'd be more to the point, neither could be said to be true and as I've been even busier this week I'm dropping the diary entries, at least for now. I'm going to keep these entries short and to the point as a week isn't a long time when it comes to a lifestyle overhaul, small steps mean small gradual changes. I'm also not the sort of person (at least now) to beat myself up over things that might be considered "bad".

Now as promised, I'll at least keep the rest of the entry short and sweet.

I've been a bit off this week. Monday was a rest day on top of a normal rest day, I was off work on my usual no exercise day and didn't want to change this part of the routine but as I was at home I also didn't get many steps in. Samhain can't go outside for a couple more weeks so it's not so easy to go in and out, plus I wanted to bond with him some more.

I also had a difficult day Wednesday, Tuesday night I developed an excruciating migraine which lasted from around 8pm until 3am, I ended up with very little sleep and ended up eating sugary baked goods on offer at work, a danish pastry as well as toast and some other baked goods, I ended up home by 2:30 feeling lousy and sleeping, although this meant I didn't have my lunch and just a normal tea so I didn't go over my daily calories allowance, nor did I the rest of the week which is the main thing as it's not always possible to do all the steps and all the exercise I plan.

My steps aren't as good this week but I'll aim for better this coming week. I've done a nice amount of exercise and I'm planning to do plenty of relaxing exercise today - standing pilates, yogalates and some cross trainer so I can catch up on my magazines! Which I'm going to hop to now as I've wanted to play some GTA: Vice City this weekend (and Minecraft but this won't happen), I should say again, I think this is my third play through.

Anyway time to run (not quite literally but a lot of stretching), next week I'll have to mention my new trainers!

There will be a few more entries to this today! 

Short Term Goals
Get my steps back up and master the side plank - I can do it but I really want to master it so I make it look effortless.

Long Term Goals
I think we can scrap the holiday this year as we'll want to spend our free time with Samhain but I do want to think about wearing some glitzy, vintage party dresses this festive season, and have an amazing Halloween outfit or just be able to wear my bat shirt, slinky black trousers and those amazing red velvet boots without feeling tubby.

Saturday, 9 August 2014

Samhain: The First Two Weeks

Daft face captured whilst filming him playing with his tickle stick - which he does love, you can't really tell that from this

Firstly, I can't believe it has only been two weeks, it feels like he has always been here. We still completely miss The Beast but Samhain gives us focus and of course he is completely different.

Now these two weeks have been busy, James and I were away for two nights, now my parents were still around but it was still a worry. Luckily he didn't feel abandoned and was happy to see us arrive home.

Samhain is affectionate and playful, he loves a kiss on his nose for some strange reason and needs plenty of playtime although he does sometimes get overexcited and bites - he is never truly aggressive, he calms right down when you back away. He has full run of the house and tends to sleep either on top of the mattress propped at the end of our bed or on top of the bed with us.

Now as I mentioned in my first post about him we did change his name but only because he immediately responded to it, Samhain, pronounced more like Sauin/Sow-inn. We have a fun little song and dance routine of me humming The Sweeney theme tune inserting Sauin-y in there for him to respond to. Of course 70's cop shows aren't his thing but I find it entertaining.

He loves it if I bend my knees when wearing a loose skirt for him to duck in and out of and even more amusingly he absolutely HATES 70's Nylon nighties - by this I mean he attacks them.

Speaking of clothing, my mum thought she was losing the plot as her tie-dye top kept making its way onto her bed from the window seat, then, one night he was caught, top in mouth and under him, against mums leg, thrusting. He has been thrusting on various bits of clothing every night since. Yes, he has been neutered but the will is still there, as is the willy. I might have to make him a special cushion but I can't work out if actually making one like another cat is just wrong or if a limbless black fluffy cushion is worse!

So now more photos, this post I'm dedicating to his fun, playful, daft face photos although I have plenty of elegant, gorgeous shots these are more fun - I will however start with one classy photo above, the rest will be playful!

A new toy for him to play with that I can dangle at a safe distance

He pulls at the tails of all the mice we have which is why he will be the first cat I've had that will be wearing a collar, a nice safe collar, not for style but to warn the birds and small animals that he is coming - he can fulfil his blood lust with my hands and possibly toes! 

This was on one of his first nights, he absolutely adores his Pollock as you can see from his 'I'm so happy' face.

and another with his Pollock, he's licking it like a lollipop before kicking the carp (not a typo, just a bad joke) out of it - I should point out that pollocks are part of the cod family and not carp, maybe I should have gone with kicking the Jackson out of it instead.

That's enough for now but expect there to be a whole lot more of him popping up in my posts - as long as he returns once we get to the point where we can let him out! 

Clinique Chubby Stick Moisturizing Lip Colour Balm in Mega Melon

I think I may have tried every other lipstick pencil around before trying the chubby stick. There are so many colours on offer it was hard to choose which to try first. I usually either choose a bold colour or a natural colour for my first go and here I went for natural.

Mega Melon is a gorgeous light coral shade, a very pale pink/brown. Even though the balm is rather sheer it adds plenty of colour to stand out, it conditions just like a balm but lasts like a lipstick. At £17.00 this isn't the cheapest nor is it the most expensive lip pencil on the market. I believe it's totally worth the cost, this is a great day to day shade and it can be thrown on like a balm - perfect for throwing in your bag. 

Thursday, 7 August 2014

What's in my Birchbox? Shop Edition

A bit of a different what's in my Birchbox post, this time it's about purchases from the shop - mainly products I've received in previous Birchbox's, so what did I get?

Compagnie de Provence Mediterranean Sea Shower Gel - £9.50 for 250ml
I didn't receive this in my Birchbox but I did receive this brand in hand cream form as part of the same range in my last Birchbox. I fell in love with it immediately, it's so fresh and reminds me of gorgeous, luxurious, white sand beach holidays - not that I've had one for a while so for now this will have to do.

Compagnie de Provence Hand Cream Mediterranean Sea - £8.50 for 75ml
As mentioned under the shower gel I received this in my last Birchbox, although I don't regularly use hand cream I know that I should, I'm in my mid early thirties, I shouldn't wait until it's too late. Especially handy for when I do get that holiday.

Noble Isle Willow Song Bath & Shower Gel - £20.00 for 250ml
I'm just finishing up my first bottle of this, another item I received in a Birchbox - this was way back in January. I knew back then that this was my ideal scent and a perfect all year round item although the name made me think of the Wicker Man which in turn makes me think/look forward to Autumn time, not because this is when the film is set (it isn't!) but because it's when the nights draw in and I get to get some serious film marathons in with plenty of Horror. This is just a luxurious gorgeous smelling shower gel that may seem pricey at £20 but it's worth it and it really does last. I just need to save my pennies for the candle.

theBalm® cosmetics Hot Mama Shadow & Blush All-in-One - £12.50 for 7.08g
Now I've been wanting to try theBalm make-up products for a while, they all look so good but I just wasn't sure what to try first. I received theBalm How 'Bout Them Apples lip and cheek balm back in April, a fantastic little sample and back in my first Birchbox I received Stainiac which I'm still using but I had yet to purchase a product myself. I decided to go with this as a cheaper, possible replacement to a blusher I absolutely adore, Benefit's Rockateur. It's a similar shade however slightly darker which suits the end of summer.

Plus one free gift, a bracelet from BaubleBar. I know this might sound daft but I don't wear bracelets that much, or at all in recent months but I do love fabric bound little bracelets, I've worn it everyday since receiving it and have actually started to dig out others I have. 

Monday, 4 August 2014

Sunday Weigh-In: No Diary This Week

This is just a very quick update after a very busy week, not only with our new cat Samhain but we were also up in Scotland for a friends wedding which meant three days were al askew.

It wasn't a bad week at all, I kept to my usual plan, although I forgot to log Wednesday up until Friday when we travelled - Thursday was different though as I was running around packing rather than exercising fully. The weekend was fun, full of ice cream but no over indulgence, I only had one glass of red wine on the day and water/diet coke for the rest of it. We managed to get quite a bit of walking in too although I my fitbit also picked up any bump we went over, even though this wasn't the whole journey I know that it's off so it isn't quite right although I know Saturday is bang on and on Sunday I was up to around 8,000 before we set off in the car so I know I did okay.

I'm not even going to say these things happen, there was no slip up, having ice cream on holiday is acceptable, it can be worked in especially if it is after a long day walking around.

I'm feeling pretty positive and have the will right now, I don't feel like I have to get back into anything because I never left. Now I'm writing this late, it's already Monday, I'd booked today off as I wasn't sure what our travel arrangements would be but as we have a new cat I'm glad to be able to catch up with him plus even though we weren't driving, we got a lift with friends, I'm still exhausted so I've kept this as my rest day and although I would usually do over 10,000 steps too I'm not pushing for that today instead I'll just eat less.

Short Term Goals
I'm just going to keep on doing what I'm doing. 37 miles in one week, I know this week looks like I've cracked it but I can't be sure how many totted up in the car.

Long Term Goals
Holiday = Holiday wardrobe. Every little break away I have reminds me I need a full on holiday somewhere.