Wednesday, February 25

25 Things To Do Before I Turn 25

Apologies from being a bit MIA from the blog for the last week or two, it was birthday last thursday and I have been out celebrating with a few million tequila's!! I can't quite believe how fast time seems to be whizzing past us nowadays: how are we in 2015 already? Where has all that time gone? I look back at my fourteen year old self - sat in my best friends room, talking about the handsome husband and flash car i'd be sporting by my mid-twenties, with my career in full swing and a mortgage under my belt. My life right now could not be farther from this *face palm* I am now 24, living at home with no license, no flash car, no prince charming and my career? - I'm still working on that one! Although I am nowhere near figuring out what I want to do with my life yet, I am determined to focus on myself this year and really spend some time figuring out my next steps and just enjoying life. So thats kind of the basis for this post - a list I am setting myself of 25 things to before I turn 25. 

Manage my money - 2015 is the year I finally grow up, get a grip on my radical spending habits and finally put my debts to bed. Considering I am only 24 I have had my fair share of credit cards, store cards and overdrafts but in the last few months I have really concentrated on clearing these and I now only have my student overdraft and credit card left to pay. If I follow my 6th month plan by June I should be debt free and ready to start planning my first adventure. 

Travel - Since I have finished University my desire to travel has become stronger each day but I have told myself no big financial commitments until I am completely out of debt. Instead I spend my days on Pinterest and travel blogs lusting over the beautiful places in the world I could only dream of visiting. This year I want to put some of these plans into action and travel to three different countries at least!

Make an investment - After getting on top of my finances and finally becoming debt free I plan to treat myself to splurge item..I'm thinking Louboutins, Levi's or a designer handbag! 

Open a Savings Account - I have never owned a savings account before as me and money don't tend to stay together for very long however, now is the time to start putting money away for my own place and my future...scary stuff.

Give money to charity - I have never been in a position where I could afford to comfortably give money to charity but now that I am, there are several causes I will be making monthly donations to as I fully believe in them and what they fight for. 

Career progression - I may not know what I want do with the rest of my life, but for right now I have set myself certain goals within my current position and will be sitting down to create a 6 month plan in the next few weeks.

Exercise - Although I will not be running out and joining the nearest gym with all its fancy equipment that I haven't a clue how to use, I would like to start light exercises at home on a regular basis just to improve my health and potentially see a personal trainer about my diet and to start a weights programme (if you have seen my weedy twig arms you will understand ha).

Learn another language - Languages were never my strong point at school as I hated my French teacher and Spanish got dropped as a GCSE option so there was no opportunity to learn another language fluently. I have always wanted to learn either Italian or Spanish and so now its time to take the plunge. 

Read more - Technology and social media play such an important role in day to day life that more often than not people forget to take time out to read. Since I discovered the Ibook app on my iPad I have started reading every night before bed and have rekindled my love for gritty, crime thrillers and a good old-fashioned love story. 

Learn to bake - Cooking is something you inevitably pick up when going to University and spending time away from your parents and although I'm am no Delia Smith I have picked up a few tips on the way and can successfully cook a meal without poisoning anybody - WIN. Baking on the other hand has never been my strong point from when I put salt instead of sugar into my 'leaving cupcakes' in Year 6 to my failed pancake attempts last year. I think even Mary Berry would have a challenge on her hands as far as my baking skills are considered but what can I say God loves a trier!

Volunteer - There are several charities which I fully support and have always wanted to support but I guess time restraints and immaturity with money have always stopped me. I'm not saying I want to quit my job and become a fully pledged campaigner but I would like to start volunteering and giving back as much as I can.

Learn to sew - My Aunty recently gave me her old sewing machine and I plan to recycle some old clothes and just have a general play around and see what I can create. Well after I remember how to thread the machine...

Scrapbooking - This is something I have done since Primary school although I have to say in previous years I have become very lazy. After watching Lily Pebbles video about starting a 'Project Life' scrapbook it has given me a burst of inspiration I will 100% be picking one of these up ASAP to carry on my favourite hobby. 

Go to a music festival - Aside from my gap year, this will be the first Summer where I don't need to work my ass off to save for the coming months back at College or University and I fully intend to enjoy them. I intend for this to be my last summer as a carefree youth and I want to go all out and what better way than a music festival. I have only ever been to Reading Festival as it's round the corner from my house but this year that's all going to change. 

Take more risks - I am a very logical person who has a plan for pretty much everything and absolutely loves making list. Unfortunately this means I am often to scared to try new experiences and just really take a risk so I'm determined to start being more impulsive and trying as many new experiences as possible. 

Go on a blind date - Dating is not my strong point, in fact I don't think I have been on a date in over two years now. The though of dating scares the shit out of me and although I have a date lined up with someone I have met once before, I consider this a blind date so I can very nearly tick this off my soon as I pluck up the courage to arrange the date and actually go!!

Spend more time with the people that matter - This may sound like a slightly odd one but last year I feel like I wasted a lot of time on people that didn't matter, that didn't care about me and quite frankly didn't deserve my time. This year I am focusing on all the positive people in my life and spending as much time with them as possible, enjoying all the little things in life. 

Take more photos - I use to take thousands of photos but in recent months I have become very lazy and just can't be bothered. Now that I have a new camera and a scrapbook to start filling, I will be snapping up at every photo opportunity. 

Learn to say 'no' - I can be quite shy in certain situations and I avoid conflict by any means possible which often means I find myself saying yes to pretty much everything. I need to be more firm and more confident in myself and start saying no when I don't agree with something or someone. 

Blog - My blog is my little baby and I have so many ideas swimming around my little head that I just need to buckle down and start writing. I am dedicating more time to my blog every week now so you can expect to start seeing more from me from now on. 

Stop hoarding - As you may have seen I am a bit of a spendaholic and I have accumulated a lot of stuff in my 24 years of living. My second biggest problem is I hoard everything and struggle to throw things away. This weekend I am having a massive clear out and sorting out everything I need to sell, give away and bin: time to get my life and my bedroom organised.

Become a morning person - This could be harder than I anticipated as my shifts are constantly changing and I can go from closing the restaurant at 1am to starting work again at 10am. I am not saying I want a daily routine but not spending my whole day off sleeping would be perfect. 

Turn the internet off - I find that social media plays an important role in the promotion of my blog but sometimes its nice to just take a break from the internet just to spend time with family or friends or spend quality time relaxing! I for once will be spending less time on the internet for sure. 

Take a class - I am one of those people that has to constantly be challenged else I get bored very easily. I am looking at starting some new hobbies and learning some new skills and what better way than by taking some classes. Once I decide in what I will let you guys know but i'm thinking either photography or beauty related are high on the agenda.

Celebrate my 25th Birthday in style - I am sure there will be a lot more tears next year as I reach a quarter of a century but I plan to party so hard I can't even remember my age.

What's on your bucket list?
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Friday, February 20

Lush | Love Locket

Lush's Love Locket Bath Bomb is one of the biggest bath bombs I have ever seen and probably the heaviest too! At a hefty £6.95 this is without a doubt the most expensive bath bomb I have bought from Lush but after reading many reviews online, I just knew I had to give it a go and see what the fuss was about - especially as this bath bomb is part of Lush's Valentines collection so will not be around for long. The bath bomb itself is a bright baby pink with a carved yellow centre and is fairly hollow, I mean you shake it and you can feel the extra bath bomb wiggling around inside. The next thing you will notice about this bath bomb is the scent - a blend of vanilla, jasmine and neroli essential oils, very sensual and feminine yet calming and very relaxing (I almost fell asleep in the bath).

Lush say after splitting in half you can use each piece and the centre in three separate baths, however I found the smaller inner bomb to be a bit disappointing on its own so I popped in the back of the bath bomb as well! Both pieces reacted very quickly in the bath tub fizzing around with streams of pink coming out and the amazing sensual scent getting stronger and stronger. The water was left a gorgeous barbie pink colour with paper and seaweed hearts floating around and a slight lush sparkle. 

The stand out pro of this bath bomb is the scent as I found it so relaxing and warming however, I wouldn't repurchase this in a hurry as I found my excitement was cut short with how fast this bath bomb dissolves in the water. I feel you would get the best results just chucking the whole bath bomb in but for £7 thats quite an expensive bath, especially if you use bath bombs all the time. I also found this didn't leave my skin particularly soft or smooth as many other bath bombs have done. However if your spending Valentines day alone this year this is the perfect treat, just add a glass of vino and Cosmo and your set for the night. With the uplifting scent and stunning pinky water this is definitely one for the girly girls. Unfortunately this is sold out online but if you pop into your local store you might still be able to snap one up before they disappear!
What do you think of Lush's Valentines Collection?
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Sunday, February 15

Lush | Floating Flower

Lush Floating Flower is part of the Valentines Day collection released back in January and is possible the prettiest bath bomb I have used to date. As the name describes this is a floating bath bomb so you simply place in the water softly and watch patiently as this exquisite bath treat slowly makes it way around the bath tub in a whirl of pinks and orange. This is a rather slow slow melting bomb so I was lucky enough to enjoy the swirl of colours and the gorgeous Jasmine scent whilst relaxing away in the tub. 

There isn't anything I don't like about this bath bomb to be honest apart from the fact its limited edition...I will be adding several of these to my stock pile thats for sure! The scent is not too floral or feminine its quite a relaxing and calming smell and pink is slowly becoming one of my favourite colours. I love the fact it floats around the bathtub so you can see all the colours spilling out and once its all dissolved the bath is a stunning pinky colour. My skin felt so soft when I was in the bath let alone when I got out and I would 100% recommend picking this up while its still around. At only £3.50 it would be rude not to really!

Have you tried any of Lush's Valentines Collection? 
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Tuesday, February 10

January Lookfantastic Beauty Box

Beauty box subscriptions are slowly taking over with many new different boxes popping up all over the place. Back when I was at University and couldn't afford to indulge in lavish beauty products every month, so  I subscribed to the good old Glossybox and Birchbox but after several months I found the products were starting to get a bit samey and it just wasn't worth the money for me as I was barely using any of the products I received. Recently I've noticed Lookfantastic have started up a beauty box and some of the reviews I have seen have boasted excellent value for me and exciting, generous products, so when I saw an offer to grab the January box for £13 I took a chance. 

Inside the sleek and sophisticated packaging was a carefully wrapped tissue package containing 6 products. Inside my box I received:

The NUXE mask alone retails for £18.50 so the box itself is already worth the £15 price tag and with free postage who can really complain? I have only used the NUXE mask once but afterwards my skin felt fresh, plump, and hydrated which is exactly what I needed after a very, very long day at work. The Molton Brown body wash is utterly divine...its so luxurious and rich, I honestly felt like I was bathing in the heavens when I used this. The scent is very relaxing and calming without being too overpowering and I love the mix of fresh and sweet scents. I am yet to try the other products but I have a long couple of days ahead of me so I can see the eye pads coming in very handy and who doesn't love a bit of Philip Kingsley? 

Overall I am impressed with the variety of products I received and I will certain get good use out of all the products contained within my box. I like the mix of brands contained especially as this box contained a couple of brands I have been wanting to try for a while now. The samples are all very generous and I would definitely say out of all the beauty box subscriptions this one is definitely worth the money. Unfortunately the January box is sold out now but you can pre-order the February box here which is set to be worth £48 including the Moroccanoil Original Oil Treatment worth £13.45! Although this was originally meant to be a one-off box I think its safe to say the February box will be making its way to me at some point!

Have you tried any of the Lookfantastic beauty boxes? 
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Thursday, February 5

January Birchbox - Women's Health

Birchbox has always been the best beauty box in my eyes, offering a good variety of brands with generous sized samples and unique lifestyle additions in each box. Until January I hand't bought a beauty box in a very long time but when I saw the January birch box could include HealGel and Philip Kingsley I clicked purchase before I could even change my mind. The January box is a result of a collaboration with Women's Health magazine and includes revitalising body treatments, antioxidant super-tea and a workout band making it perfect to start the new year with a refreshing outlook. Inside my box I received:
Birchbox Pilates Band

My box was also supposed to contain a Caudalie Vinoperfect Radiance Serum but this was missing on arrival and after tweeting and emailing Birchbox and receiving no response I gave up. I have to say I was quite disappointed with the contents of the box and wish I had not been so impulsive with this purchase, especially as one of the main products I would have used in the box is missing!! However the Stila Lip Glaze's are some of my favourite glosses and I will definitely welcome this new addition to my collection! Plus I already own the Korres Citrus Body Milk and absolutely love the smell so to receive the shower gel is spot on. 

I can't say I will get much use out the pilates band or the activbod lotion as I am the laziest person when it comes to exercise but I have plenty of gym-obsessed friends I can pass these onto. Green tea is something I repeatedly try but I just haven't acquired a taste for yet. I am going to keep trying it as there are sooooo many benefits to gain from drinking it, and I like the fact you can use this particular tea blended into smoothies and juices. Overall although I will get some use out of the products I received, I don't think I will be ordering a beauty box of this type for a while. I need to stop being so impulsive with my purchases to make sure I receive my money's worth every-time. 

What beauty boxes have you tried? 

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Sunday, February 1

Southampton Bloggers Lunch

So yesterday myself and 13 other bloggers (Amy, Alice, Brogan, Catherine, Charlotte, Conny, Faye, Karis, Jessica, Jessica, Natasha, Mandy and Samantha) met up for an afternoon of jerk chicken, cocktails and of course shopping. We visited Turtle Bay which is a Caribbean restaurant in Guildhall Square. They serve everything from light snacks and salads to one pot dishes and a jerk BBQ: I challenge you to find something on the menu you don't like! Along side the beautiful food are the most refreshing, vibrant cocktails which are 2-4-1 all day, every day, apart from between 7pm-10pm: you can't get much better than that!

Once everyone had arrived the talk quickly turned to all thing blogging, vlogging and shopping! I opted for my favourite mocktail to start with, the passion fruit cooler, but after seeing everyone else's amazing cocktails arrive me and Alice decided to order a couple of passion rum punch's to start the day off. Food wise I opted for the jerk chicken wrap and chips and a side of duck rolls. I have had this wrap many times before but this particular wrap was probably the best I've had so far and the chips are without a doubt THE best chips in the world universe. 

After some more luscious cocktails and a couple of windswept selfies, we made a move and headed to town where we had a wander around the usual spots: TK Maxx, Boots, Primark and Lush! It was a lovely day with a bunch of girls I am very privileged to have met through my blog and hope that these lunch dates become more of a regular thing! I hope to see you all again soon.

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