Friday, 29 December 2017

My Goals for 2018 | Personal


I feel really positive for 2018, I feel like it is going to be my year. I am going to make it my year. I have a lot of things I want to do, but I'm not going to kick myself if it doesn't happen. This next year will be full of positivity, improvements and making memories. Below are 3 main things I want to focus on in my personal life.
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Sunday, 24 December 2017

Parental Parameters: When Borrowing Can Be Justified*


Living a life of responsibility isn’t for the faint of heart, especially not when you’re a parent. Now that you have kin of your own you’re living for them more than you are yourself. It's a blessing and also a necessary challenge to take care of children in the proper manner. Giving your children a good living standard doesn’t just happen. Although it may the time of year when cheer and hopes are extended, you can’t simply wish for a better life. It has to be earned and so much the better as when your children are growing up in better conditions than you did, you know you’re doing it right. Financial troubles are commonplace when it comes to families with newborns. You catch yourself thinking sometimes ‘how could someone so small need so much?’. You’re buying day clothes, clothes for bed, food, milk, outdoor winter clothes, dummies, bedtime wind chimes, medicines, vaccines and shots and even right down to the passport. No wonder things get tough and if they haven’t already they will soon. So when is it right for you to borrow money without jeopardizing your ability to maintain a good living standard for your child?

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Wednesday, 20 December 2017

My Top Five Instagrammers of 2017


Despite the new algorithms Instagram is one of my go to apps as soon as I wake up. I have reached a goal of mine this year to get over 1000 followers on insta, so I am thrilled. Here are five of my all time favourite instagram accounts throughout the past year. Please go check them all out and give them a follow if you don't already! 

Ally is one of the best photographers I have seen this year alongside having the most gorgeous hair colour/styles. They have ranged a lot this year and I love keeping up with it. She's an inspiration as she is an amazing blogger, photographer and a paramedic. I have no idea how she fits it all into her days but she's smashing it. 
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Monday, 18 December 2017

Twenty Seventeen | What A Year


Twenty seventeen, it's nearly over and I will be another year older. The new year feels like an extra fresh start for me as my birthday is January 1st, so I love making plans and lists of what I want to achieve.  This year has had a lot of highs and lows for me alongside one of the most unforgettable and painful experiences.
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Sunday, 17 December 2017

Kiss Cosmetics Christmas Party Duo


The Christmas party season is upon us and it's all about the glitz and the glamour. Everyone gets dressed up, nails done and has one too many. Normally embarrass themselves in front of their bosses and regret it in the morning. Getting the perfectly festive look is a part of the evening every girl loves and no one has to worry about. 
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Friday, 15 December 2017

Three Things Before Christmas Day


Christmas is right around the corner, everyone is looking forward to Christmas day. Opening presents having a luxurious breakfast, it just gives the start of the day a festive euphoria. Also having a massive Christmas lunch far too early in the day in my opinion. Then lounging around the television, full of food watching your favourite Christmas movies. Everyone loves Christmas day but I also love the run up to Christmas. Theres so much you can do to get yourself in the Christmas mood or to spread Christmas cheer to all of those scrooges out there. Here are three of the things that I love to do.

//01 Festive Baking & Sharing

Christmas baking is fun to do at all ages. Kids love it, your parents will love it and hopefully you will as well. You can make whatever you fancy from mince pies which you can jazz up like I did here with a mince pie cinnamon roll combination.  You could also try the classic gingerbread men. Everyone loves food, Christmas food especially. It's nice to pack it up, go see family. Your grandparents, auntie, sibling, whatever you fancy really. Give them a visit, take your favourite festive movie and have a cosy afternoon enjoying your baked goods.
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Thursday, 14 December 2017

Why You Should Clear the Clutter Before Christmas*



In the run-up to Christmas, you undoubtedly have a million things to do, from buying presents and decorating the tree to planning for the feast you’re preparing to cook up on the big day, so I’m sure the last thing you want to do is add an extra chore to your list. However, the process of decluttering is something that you really should consider doing for a few good reasons for doing so…
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Trying To Be Stress Free


Stress is everywhere and most of us experience it on a daily basis. I, like a lot of people don't handle stress very well. I get tight chested, irritable and it also flares up my anxiety. I have started taking steps to reduce stress in my life and manage it better. My goal of 2018 will be to stress less and not worry over silly things that can't be helped.

So what am I doing? There are a few things that all contribute to feeling better and not stressing so much that is working for me so far.
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Saturday, 9 December 2017

Festive Favourites



It's the most wonderful time of the yearrrr, I bet you sang that first line! Getting in the festive spirit is definitely my jam. Christmas is just the je ne sais quoi of the year for me. That perfection, that cherry on the top. Everyone is in high spirits as much as everyone being on the spirits. I even treated myself to a pre mixed can of vodka and coke for tonight. Look at me being a normal adult and having a drink. 

Back to todays topic, my favourites for this festive time of year. First of all home bits, you can't have a festive season without fluffy socks, fairy lights everywhere and a hot water bottle. My feet always get cold so I just love my faux fur hot water bottle between my feet, keeping them warm while having a hot chocolate. 
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Friday, 8 December 2017

Lily's Four Month Update | Playtime & Struggles


I'm sure every parent in history has said this but she's growing too fast! It's crazy to think that in 2 months we will of had her for half a year already. So much has changed in the last month it's unreal. She so much more independent and wants to do more things.

She has come so far this month, she manages to hold her head really well without support, I'm pretty sure she will be weaning soon onto some purees. She still sleeps amazing, just last night she slept 9 hours. She has become a lot more interactive and playful. She laughs all the time. She loves to play with her toys, watch TV and is a lot more aware of what is going on.
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Sunday, 3 December 2017

Gift Guide | The Body Shop On A Budget


Christmas is certainly a time that breaks the bank and you end up spending a lot more than you would want to. This year I'm 100% on a budget due to maternity leave, as a lot of you know. With O2 you have O2 Priority and you get so many good deals as well as freebies. Things like free chocolate coins at W H Smiths, a free advent calendar from Thornton's and a free hot drink every Tuesday from Cafe Nero. I saw a Body Shop offer for online and in-store, spend £50 and get £25 off. That is an amazing offer and they have it online on their own website at the moment as well so everyone can use it. 
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Monday, 27 November 2017

Christmas Gift Guide for Her*


Sometimes christmas gift ideas for women can be challenging but here are a few ideas for those of you who need a bit of a boost in the Christmas shopping madness. I'm always itching to look at everyones gift guides to see what they recommend. I find women are a lot easier to buy for than men but still gift guides can give you an idea you've never even thought of. Something that could make your loves ones day.
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Keeping Your Child's Mind Active During Christmas Break*

If you are a parent, then you probably know your children better than they know themselves. Knowing when they are up to something, when they want something, when they're sad, when they can't contain their excitement, you can read it all. However, with the winter holidays coming up, you won’t need any of those parental skills to sense your child’s overflowing anticipation to finally get out of school. Winter holidays are some of the lengthier holidays that children get from school, and it is easy to completely forget about education and any sort of responsibilities during the time. Of course, that’s partly what it is all about, but keeping your child’s education in mind should be a priority, especially in the age of a brutal working world where it’s hard to find any job above minimum wage, if at all, even for decently educated individuals. As a parent, it is your responsibility to provide them with all the possible assets which could make their life a lot easier somewhere down the line. It is often hard to get your child to get invested in anything educational during holidays without them temporarily hating you, but there are a few ways you could go around that, making the whole process much more pleasant.

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Thursday, 23 November 2017

Christmas Fragrance Wishlist*

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Making Money With Makeup!*

Makeup means different things to different people. For some, it’s an opportunitiy to enhance their beauty, and for others it can be their mask from the world. Some enjoy the creative aspect, as it really is an art form. However you use makeup it can be extremely fun, but did you know you could make good money from your passion? Here are three ideas.

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DIY Christmas Decoration Ideas*


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Tuesday, 21 November 2017

Lunch In London


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#PixieLottXKiss Lunch | Kiss Cosmetics


Friday just gone was a wonderful day but the longest I have been away from my baby. I was surprisingly okay. I thought I would be a lot worse, she was left with people I trust and pretty much slept all day. Typical Lily! She's a sleepy one, she's asleep right now as I'm writing this. Also the fact I was distracted with an amazing party/lunch and London helped. I rarely go to London so I really embrace it when I do.

Anyway back to the day, it started early a 2 hour train journey to London Euston, catching up with Paige from The Last Paige. I hadn't seen her for a while so it was lovely. We were kindly invited to Lunch with Pixie Lott, to ask her our beauty questions and see the amazing products from Kiss Cosmetics. After catching the tube to get to the venue, The Cuckoo Club we waited eagerly in line with excited fellow bloggers and journalists. I've not heard of the club before but it was a beautiful venue as you can see from the pictures. It had a wonderland vibe to it with all the faux plants around the room.
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Friday, 10 November 2017

Buying For Baby: How To Avoid Letting Your New Arrival Cripple Your Finances*

baby, beautiful, bed

It's a pretty well-known fact at this point that the cost of raising a child is pretty significant. In fact, in the modern age, the cost of raising a child to adulthood can range in the hundreds-of-thousands! Because of this, it's pretty understandable that a lot of people work hard to try and save as much money as possible. One of the biggest challenges getting in the way of this is the fact that babies and kids need a lot of stuff, and pretty much all of that stuff costs money, whether you like it or not. However, just because you have to spend money doesn't mean that you need to bankrupt yourself. Here are a few simple things that you can do in order to save money on the purchases for your new arrival.

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Thursday, 9 November 2017

Tips To Help Early Teethers | Parenting


Now, I am in no way a medical professional or experienced but this is just what has really helped me. So don't take this as gospel but a post like this would really help me so I hope it helps any of you new mums out there. Lily started getting her teeth in from about 10 weeks. It was a lot earlier than I expected, I know some babies can be born with teeth but I really thought it would be in a few more months. Lily has had a lot of trouble with her teeth coming through, she really whinges about it and just seems uncomfortable sometimes. Below are a few things that have helped me so far.

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Wednesday, 8 November 2017

Leighton Denny | Party Ready Nails


I do love the classic Christmas colours for nails, red, white and green. However at a party I like them to be more elegant with a beautiful and eye catching colour. Leighton Denny nail varnishes are a big favourite of mine. The pigmentation is perfection, it drys really quick which is perfect for me always on the go. It also goes on so smoothly it makes painting your nails a breeze. They have some lovely colours and beautifully packaged. 

The new Bold and Beautiful Christmas collection is just that. They have a Great Gatsby vibe on the packaging which just screams party, party, party! I tried these out and went 5 days before even getting chipped polish, so a big thumbs up from me. It's a perfect stocking filler gift you can get at about £10 and they have other amazing colours on the Leighton Denny website.  

What is your favourite nail colour for the festive season? Let me know in the comments below.



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Tuesday, 7 November 2017

The ongoing re-brand of drainedbeauty | Advice*


I am currently in the middle of wanted to re-brand drainedbeauty. New logo, layout and all the trimmings. I did recently change my logo to a simplistic one which I love and got some business cards printed for events and when I'm out and about. You never know who will ask you about it. I got my business cards from moo.com. I've always used them and the quality is spot on. I love how they have turned out and can't wait to pass them out to people. It gives you a more professional stand point on your blog.
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Sunday, 5 November 2017

Sunday Summary #22


This week has been a bit of a rollercoaster. It's been very up and down with Lily, she's either been knackered all day and pretty much just slept the majority or she's been fighting to stay awake, having a lot of trouble with her teeth trying to come through. I feel this week I'm starting to find the balance though, so I can get stuff done for myself as well as looking after Lily. She loves cuddles and I could sit there and cuddle her all day in between the feeds and nappy changes. However then I don't have any time for myself, to get the housework done or do a quick post. I've started to put her down once she's asleep and get a lot more done which you will notice from the influx in posts coming your way.
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Friday, 3 November 2017

Winter Watch List*


As the colder months are approaching and the impending dark evenings take over, we will be surely spending a lot more time inside our warm and cosy homes. I know I certainly will be, snuggled up with a hot chocolate, a fluffy blanket and my current favourite tv shows to binge watch. As Christmas is coming one of the things on my wish list is the new Panasonic HDR 4K TV. I've been after a new TV for ages. We still have Scott's TV from his bedroom from when he lived at home! This is a sponsored post from Panasonic, but it is a great TV and I wouldn't mind that under the tree on the 25th December.

I've always preferred boxsets over films, it lasts longer and you can get more invested in the characters story. Netflix is perfect for a boxset binger like myself.

//01 Riverdale

Riverdale is my current favourite boxset, I've caught up so I'm having to wait each week for the next episode to come out, which can be annoying but it gives me something to look forward to on Thursdays. I think it is amazingly set out, has a thrilling and enticing storyline, I will certainly be rewatching the whole series soon too. It's about a town with a north side which tends to be the privileged part of the town and the south side which is full of crime, drugs and a biker gang.

There are four main teens the story follows, Archie, Betty, Veronica and Jughead. It's full of drama, fall outs, cliff hangers and love, of course.
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Wednesday, 1 November 2017

Stoptober | Eisberg Alcohol Free Wine*


October has officially ended, halloween is over, Autumn has begun and a lot of people gave up smoking and drinking for the month. Hopefully they were successful, I'm sure a lot of the people who gave up alcohol will be hitting the pub for a pint or G&T with there friends. I used to go out a lot and drink but I rarely do now.

Part of my reasons are I have seen first hand the bad aspects of drinking having an alcoholic in the family and all of the drama that accompany that. In October I tried the Eisberg alcohol free wines. I've had them before and love them. I do like the occasional white wine spritzer or glass of rose for a special occasion. Sometimes if I've had a particularly stressful day I like to sit with some chocolates and a white wine spritzer, in my Pj's and watching TV. Couldn't think of anything better.

Especially now I'm a mum I wouldn't want to drink while looking after Lily, it's irresponsible. These wine's are a perfect alternative. They taste so similar to wine, that crisp fresh taste is just perfection. Here is a rose cocktail that I've been loving this month:

Rosaquiri (Rose/Daquiri)


  • 2oz Eisberg Rose
  • 1oz Your favourite Rum ( I used Bacardi)
  • Squeeze of fresh lime
  • drizzle of syrup
  • Have with ice and garnish with lime slice

Since I last tried Eisberg that have now got two new additions sparkling rose & sparkling blanc in some very aesthetically pleasing bottles perfect to have on display.

Find out more about the wines here.


What is your favourite wine? Have you ever tried alcohol free? Let me know in the comments below.

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Monday, 30 October 2017

Lily's Three Month Update | Early Teeth & Explosive Bums


Another month flown by, it really makes you think about how fast time flies and how short life is. I've been really thinking about how I want to cherish every moment. I want to be able to give Lily all the things I couldn't have as a child. We weren't very well off at all so I missed out on a lot of things, school trips, holidays, I've never even been to a theme park.

At the moment obviously theres no point taking her somewhere like that but as she's getting older each day I can see her getting stronger, trying to sit up and gurgle at me. I just want her to experience the world and do whatever she wants. The last month has been good and bad. Around 9 weeks I saw two teeth buds starting to a appear and by 11 weeks there were 4 quite obviously there. They still haven't cut through but you can tell sometimes they are playing her up. She just wants to cuddle all the time, chews her hand and if she holds your finger it goes straight in the mouth to be sucked and chewed on.

Another adorable addition to her ever-growing little Lily personality is how extremely happy she is to see you when she wakes up in the morning. She starts to wriggle, I can hear her tossing and kicking her legs, my eyes slowly open thinking please don't be the middle of the night. Normally she sleeps through and wakes about 6am when Scott's alarm goes off for work but very rarely she will get up about 4 for a feed then sleep til about 9am. As soon as I sit up and say "Good Morning" is a slightly higher pitched voice, that smile just grows across her face and she lights up. It's such a nice feeling having someone be so happy to see me although I probably look like I've been dragged through a hedge backwards, messy hair and no make up. She doesn't care, she just wants milk and cuddles with you.

One of the unexpected things was the first overflowing poo. I managed nearly 3 months without one but alas it has happened. We were just sitting on the bed playing with her on a Sunday morning, making her giggle and then you heard it. We took her to the changing mat and it seemed to just leak out, everywhere. It was certainly a two man job, she was giggling after and thought it was funny. Straight in the bath for the little monster.

Stats:

Weight - 12lb5
Clothes - 3-6 (although some of the bodysuits are too big, she's like in the awkward middle sizing)
Feed - Still drinks normally 6oz per feed
Favourite thing - Her playmat still and a baby sensory video of dots (she gets frustrated if you turn it off now sometimes)


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Tuesday, 24 October 2017

Halloween Candy Bark


Candy bark is an easy cheap treat perfect for a halloween party and to make with your children. It so simple and you can change it around and put whatever toppings you want on it. I went for the typical halloween colours, orange, green and yellow. Very similar to the colours of the changing leaves so also have an autumnal theme to it. Me and Scott enjoyed this for a movie night where we watched some halloween episodes of The Simpsons.

You will need:

  • 2 bars of Milkybar/White Chocolate
  • Chocolate M&M's
  • Jellybeans
  • White Oreos
  • Marshmallows
You can obviously swap and change the toppings to suite you. 

Method:

  1. Melt the chocolate in the microwave, it took me 1 minute. I then continued to stir until all the lumps were gone.
  2. Pour the melted chocolate onto a tray lined with greaseproof paper or clingfilm
  3. Spread out the chocolate into a rectangle or to suit the shape of the tray
  4. Add the toppings onto the chocolate while it's still melted
  5. Pop in the freezer to become ice cold
  6. Once it is cold and hard, break into pieces
  7. Enjoy
What would be your favourite toppings? Let me know in the comments below.



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Sunday, 22 October 2017

The Reading List #1


I'm going to start a reading/book review section on my blog. I will be buying a few books to read then will be reviewing them on the blog. I've been wanting to read more and I've been struggling to find a book that I can really get into. I have always been a massive fan of Harry Potter story but never read the books. They were 3 for 2 at WHSmiths so I thought I would give it a go, all 3 books for £16, bargain!

I've heard a lot of good stuff about these books and can't wait to review them, I've already started reading the Philosophers stone and its amazing how different it is to the films. Even small minor details, the books certainly bring more atmosphere and magic to your imagination of the story.

Reading used to be a big part of my life and TV seems to have just taken over. You can't expand your mind and vocabulary as much as you can with reading. I'm hoping I'm able to stick with it while also looking after Lily. At the moment I seem to be able to read the most when I'm in the bath, my lovely relaxing alone time.

Any book recommendations for me to move onto afterwards? Let me know in the comments below.

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Saturday, 21 October 2017

Ten Things I Want To Do This Autumn


As many of you are aware, Autumn is my favourite time of year. If you don't know, well, now you do. Cosy jumpers, hot chocolate, pumpkin spice, cold and dark mornings, halloween episodes of The Simpsons and the crunchy leaves when you walk down the street. What's not to love? I've never been a fan of the heat, I find it a lot easier to snuggle up and get warm than I do to cool down.It's our first Autumn with Lily as well so even more excuses to stay inside and cuddle with the little munchkin while binge watching Netflix. Although as much as I like to stay in all cosy there are a few bits I want to do this Autumn to get out and about.

//01 Go to a pumpkin patch
//02 Go for a costa friend date when the new Christmas drinks are out (black forrest hot chocolate is the ultimate drink) 2nd Novemeber, not long!
//03 Watch a scary film
//04 Go for an Autumn Walk around Memorial Park (maybe take some cheeky blog photos)
//05 Have an evening watching tv/Netflix with hot chocolate and cuddles with Scott and Lily.
//06 Do some Autumnal inspired baking
//07 Buy a new jumper
//08 Buy some new boots (floral ones from primark are my current favourite)
//09 Dress up for halloween (I haven't since I was about 10)
//10 Have a big roast dinner with Scott (Thanksgiving inspired, bringing the tradition to the UK)


Khaki Leather Jacket, Dark Orange Jumper & Leggings - Primark | Mulberry Dupe Scarf - Amazon | Orange/Red Boots - Newlook | Emily Necklace - Very

What do you want to do this Autumn/Fall? Let me know in the comments below!


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