The great big (practically elephantine) pregnancy post!

Posted by Lipglossiping On April - 23 - 2014

When I started this blog back in 2009 (it’s Lipglossiping’s 5th anniversary on Friday!), I was already 8-months pregnant with Leila, which didn’t leave a lot of time for pregnancy thoughts and updates.  When I discovered I was expecting again last September, I thought that this time around I might fill the pages with tales of untreated haemorrhoids, killer constipation, and colourful stretch marks but when push came to shove, I’ve actually spent most of these past 9-months feeling too lackluster to blog much at all.

Which means two things.

One.  You’ve actually been spared.

And two…  You’re overdue a post (or seven-hundred).

Let’s start with a pregnancy/beauty/health one shall we?  I’ve only got two weeks of this chapter in my life left, so I’d better crack on!

baby bump

Sickness & Nausea

There’s been a lot of it this time around.  I didn’t realise how lucky I was when I was carrying Leila, my early pregnancy symptoms revolved around sore boobs and that was mostly it.  This time, I was dealt the whole deck – from night-time nausea to daily ritualistic sacrifices to Ralph, the porcelain god.  Nipples that were convinced my bras had turned into julienne peelers overnight, and the kind of exhaustion that had me tucked up in bed by 7pm every evening.

My only advice is to remember that it will pass.  Unless you’re really, really, unlucky.  In which case, sorry about that.  I tried sickness bands, preggo pops, scent therapy… truly, the only things that really worked for me in the early days were to make sure that I slept as much as I was able (waving goodbye to my late nights of blogging) and to eat toast/crackers/anything I could get my hands on before I’d even sat up in bed in the morning.

Skin

Back in 2008/2009, I glowed from day one.  Five years on… not so much.  It’s a pretty frustrating turn of events for someone who invests so much bloody effort in their appearance nowadays!  As soon as the mercury plummeted and Winter approached, my skin turned to pure shit.  The dryness, all over my body was unbearable at times.  Foundation was a no-go, a practical impossibility, so I resigned myself to it and spent the mornings slathering on increasingly rich moisturising products in an attempt to keep the flakies to a minimum.

I’d love to tell you that I found a magical combination of moisturising products to solve my issues.  But I didn’t.  It didn’t matter how heavy the lotions were, how much the serums pulled water from thin air, or how many moisturising masks I applied, I can’t say that I ever restored the balance through changing my moisturising routine.  The only thing that has provided relief is upping regular exfoliation from once a week to four(!) times a week.  I’ll admit, I was worried that I was over-exfoliating my sensitive skin… but I really believe that my skin, right now… needs it more than anything else.

exfoliating-in-pregnancy

I’m alternating between using LUSH Let The Good Times Roll Cleanser (£6.35)* three times a week while in the shower in the morning, and my beloved Elemis Tri Enzyme Resurfacing Gel Mask (£38.25), once a week as a Sunday night (treat)ment.  For moisturising, I got so pissed off at throwing money at products that I’m really happy to have stripped back the fuss and found it beneficial.  I’m using Olay Beauty Fluid Sensitive (£3.99) and it’s doing a grand job without bells and whistles.

Hair

Another cruel blow from the last 9-months was that nothing actually changed.  With Leila, my greasy roots disappeared and I was able to get away with washing my hair only twice a week!  This time, nada.  The only noticeable difference was how much greyer I’ve become in the 5-years between kiddos.  Thanks for that!

superdrug-creme-sensations-hair-dye

I avoided dyeing my hair completely for the first 3-months of pregnancy and have since cut-down my habit to once every 8/9 weeks.  I use a semi-permanent dye… the same that I was using pre-pregnancy but I’ve gone another shade lighter as my hair seems especially prone to sucking up the dark colour at the moment.  I use the Superdrug Crème Sensations in Light Brown 6.0 (£3.59) which gives me a med/dark brown result and lasts really well over my greys.

Body

I’ve been waiting for the onslaught of stretchmarks since I turned 30+ weeks but I haven’t seen any.  Well, not any new ones anyway… some of the faded ones from last time are looking a little more pronounced but I may have gotten away with developing any additional marks.

Having said that, I firmly believe that there is nothing you can apply topically to your tummy to avoid stretchmarks.  Nothing.  You’ll either get ‘em or you won’t.  I haven’t paid any special attention to moisturising my body because I’m a lazy oik, so the only products that have been in contact with my baby bump are good old-fashioned Astral Cream (£3.99)* after showering and LUSH Ro’s Argan Body Conditioner (£15.95) as a once a week treat, a product that I still get evangelical about!

bump-moisturising

The only other pregnancy issue I’ve experienced with my body has been a big increase in the development of my existing skin tags!  I’m a skin-taggy person and have had a few removed over the years but in the past 9-months, my two remaining ones have literally tripled in size.  I’ve read that this is a common issue, brought about by the extra growth of cells within the superficial layers of skin.  This makes perfect sense to me… and may also explain why I’ve benefited so much from upping my exfoliation routine!  I’ll be getting them frozen off when bubs is out, for sure!

Other Preggo Issues

I was half-expecting my PCOS hair-growth to go ballistic during pregnancy… but this hasn’t happened (thank God!).  Neither have my moods been massively altered by the hormonal changes.  My diet has been affected by the return of “borderline” gestational diabetes and my greatest ally in reducing my refined carb-intake has been the humble loaf of Burgen Bread (the soya & linseed one) (£1.40) and an increase in side salads!  I have missed hot cross buns terribly this Easter but Lidl’s 81% Arriba Superieur Dark Chocolate (£0.99) has seen me through my darkest days!

soya-and-linseed-bread1

My final issue has been achieving quality sleep.  I’ve really struggled with it on and off since week 32.  Mostly thanks to heartburn, so if the old wive’s tale is anything to go by… I will surely give birth to an ape.  I’m at the point now that regular over-the-counter remedies just aren’t helping.  I have a midwife appointment tomorrow but with only 2-weeks left, I don’t think she’ll be keen to put me on anything stronger.

So there we go, I’m sure I’ve missed some preggo-related stuffs but in all honesty, I’m bored of writing this mammoth post now and I desperately want to go and put the kettle on. 

All things being well, we’ll be meeting the newest addition to our family on the 7th May, that’s not long is it?  I still haven’t attached the crib to the bed yet but I have packed my makeup bag for the hospital. Priorities!

* press samples

if you liked this post, please don’t forget to check out my subscriber options, here


Something a little bit different…

Posted by Lipglossiping On March - 31 - 2014

…I’m so pleased with how these party invitations turned out, I had to share!

Mostly because my poor husband is absolutely sick of giving me constant “they look great!” validation, so I’m turning to you instead.  Of course, you can tell me they look terrible if you want, it’s ok… I can totally handle criticism, that’s if… you can handle a DDOS attack.

JUST KIDDING.

Anyway, this is kind of a big deal, Leila has been waiting for a proper “friends” birthday party since she turned 3 and I told her that in her first year of BIG school, she could invite the whole class if she wanted but until then, she had to make do with family-only birthdays.  So she has.  Not that she minded the family parties at all, but you know… when you’re that age, nothing in life is more important than your PARTY, right?  She also knows that she doesn’t get another “big” party until she turns 10… so, she’s keen to make the most of it!

Anyway, as fate would have it… my due-date for baby number two coincides with her 5th Birthday.  Which means that I’ll be 38-and-a-half-weeks pregnant on the day of her party.  The party with 35-children coming.  Speshul award for me please!

IMG_4931

IMG_4934

The invitations are going in to school today to be given out just before home-time.  I don’t know about you but I hate the idea of giving out invitations during school-time if there’s only a select few kids being invited.  I’m of the opinion that if the whole class isn’t invited, the invitation “thing” should be done out of school completely.  The thought of leaving a few 4 or 5 year olds disappointed while others get invited makes my heart do a sob.

Because she’s having a Disco Party, we made VIP DISCO PASSES.  If you’re not wearing your lanyard, you’re not getting in! (or something like that).

Each lanyard has a glowstick and a candy watch attached.  To be honest, I really wanted to attach candy-dummies to the lanyards but I was a bit worried the parents might think I’d be playing Happy Hardcore and handing out Speed and Ecstasy during the interval.  I also considered a whistle… but then came to my senses, because that wouldn’t be at all annoying for Mum and Dad on the way home, right?

I bought most of the components for the invites from eBay.  The lanyards, I think, are mobile-phone ones from Hong Kong… the “VIP card” holders I bought separately and the glow-sticks were bought in a bulk pack of 50.  The candy watches came from Amazon.  All in all, to make 35 invitations, it came to just over £18.  Not including printer ink/card or the blood, sweat, and tears.

I was pleasantly surprised because I always embark on these projects and then start lying to my husband when I realise just how much it’s gonna cost to DIY it!  I also have some leftover glow-sticks/watches to put in goody bags.

Between the almost-5-year-old and the almost-33-year-old, you can guess who had more fun making these invitations can’t you? *blush*

Afternoon Tea at The Vineyard Hotel, Berkshire

Posted by Lipglossiping On February - 23 - 2014

Half-terms may be aimed at kids but that doesn’t mean that the adults can’t have a fun-filled week too!

I met up with some of my dearest blogging-pals yesterday for an overdue gossip and a stroll around Newbury.  I won’t bore you with what I bought because to be quite honest, I spent more time in Lakeland than I did Boots and I’m not sure you’d be too impressed with an indepth review of the gadgety tea-strainer and strawberry-huller that came home with me.

However, I did confirm an infatuation after swatching Laura Mercier’s latest palette, developed an interest in the new, lightweight version of the N07 Stay Perfect foundation, and unexpectedly cooed over some new Lancome blushes, I just failed to part with my pennies on this kind of frippery.  It may not have helped matters that I haven’t been paid yet *shakes fist at late payers*.

However, I thought I’d share what, for me, was the highlight of the day… afternoon tea at The Vineyard Hotel, just outside the town.

tvs_exterior_lavender

I had a bloody terrible afternoon tea last weekend at the Clifton Gorge Hotel in Bristol, so being seated in the plush surroundings of the Vineyard’s restaurant bar did wonders to soothe the old wounds leftover by that experience!  Have a look at what we (over) indulged upon…

photo-2

The most precisely cut sandwiches you ever did see, a delightful variety that included: cucumber and crème fraiche, smoked salmon with coriander and lime butter, ham with honey mustard, chicken with tarragon mayonnaise, and the obligatory egg mayonnaise.

photo-3

This was followed up by a generous 2-scones per person serving, accompanied with… well, despite lots of guesses we weren’t quite sure on the jams to be honest… but for me, the flavours beat your standard strawberry fare!  They didn’t skimp on the clotted cream either!

And finally, the piece de resistance… take a look at this for a patisserie platter…

photo-4

photo-1

Chocolate-filled profiteroles, mini pistachio ice-cream tubs, blackcurrant macarons, lemon cake, and slices of classic fruit cake!  As for the red jelly-esque mounds in the middle there… well, they kept us guessing too!  Not a clue what they were all about but they were very fruity with a sharp tang and a great caramelised crunch.

The tea selection was varied and ever-flowing, I stuck to the traditional English Breakfast (I won’t deny the temptation to ask for “builders”) but there was a great choice of black and herbal teas to suit every taste bud.

All in all, it was a fantastic way to spend the afternoon… staff were attentive without being overwhelming and the tray after tray of goodies that kept arriving at the table ensured many looks of jealousy from the other guests seated nearby.  Best of all?  There was no feelings of pressure to clear our plates and make room for other parties… we sat in complete comfort, chatting away for almost three-hours.

All of this?  £22.50 each.  I can’t think of a nicer way to spend a Saturday afternoon than in the company of some lovely people and some truly great food!

if you liked this post, please don’t forget to check out my subscriber options, here

Do you double dip?

Posted by Lipglossiping On January - 23 - 2014

I can’t wait to see the kind of traffic that title brings in… some of you are going to be sorely disappointed (and somewhat frustrated) when you realise that I’m talking about multi-use products!

After posting this morning’s review of the new Clarins Cream Blush, I read a tweet from another blogger (and Clarins skincare specialist) who, quite rightly, reminded me that they could not only be used on the cheeks but also double-up as a lip product.  Now, this isn’t an unusual feat for cream products… Many offer this multi-function, but for me…. I just can’t deal with that kind of cross-contamination!

double-dipped

I know this makes me sound majorly OCD about my cosmetics.  I’m not.  Hell, I was also simultaneously tweeting about my mascara graveyard that I can’t seem to put to bed, despite the knowledge that I might get syphilis in my eyes (or err, something) by being so lax about my cosmetic hygiene.  But when it comes to cream multi-use products, it just feels sorta dirty… in a double-dipped kinda way.

Remember when you were a kid and you had two flannels.  One for faces and one for bums?

I need two cream compacts.  One for cheeks and one for lips.  It’s not that I might confuse my face for a bum, it’s just that… it’s just… I don’t want a sneaky speck of lip-gunk on my cheeks, and I don’t want skin sebum all over my lips (mmm, tasty).  For someone who only has one face (and one bum), buying two compacts seems rather excessive, so I… err, don’t.

Surely, I’m not alone in this mild makeup OCD-ness?  Am I?!

if you liked this post, don’t forget to check out my subscriber options, here

Don’t miss another post!

Posted by Lipglossiping On January - 14 - 2014

How do you keep subscribed to my updates. You know, since 2009 there have been over 2790 of them! That’s a lot of blogging, think of all the things I could have been doing with my life instead?! No actually, don’t…

What I want to know is… how do you follow my inane ramblings? In case you’re in need of a little update… here are some of the ways we can keep in touch…

Bloglovin

bloglovin

Bloglovin is an easy way to find and store all of your favourite blogs in one place. It’s quick to log on and check for updates, giving you the gist of a post so you can decide whether or not you’re interested in clicking through to read more.

click here to subscribe via Bloglovin’

Email

For the least amount of effort on your part, subscribe to my daily mail out. You’ll only receive one email per day (and that’s only if I’ve updated!)

emailsub

Any posts will be waiting for you to read from the comfort of your email inbox whenever you get a spare minute.

click here to subscribe to my daily email

Twitter

Incase you don’t know, I’m a wee bit of a Twitter addict (50,000+ tweets and counting!) If you have any questions or want to shout at me about something, this is the best place to find me! I use Twitter to promote my latest posts with a single link and automate a couple of links a day to older posts that you may not have picked up on the first time around.

liptwitter

Twitter is also where I link extremely time-sensitive info (deals, voucher codes etc.) and retweet lots of completely and utterly fascinating (honest!) snippets that I discover!

click here to follow me on Twitter

Facebook

I don’t really use Facebook if I’m honest…. but if you’re an avid fan, you can follow my page which will, by the power of the magical internet, feed my latest updates into your timeline.

facebooklipglossiping

click here to follow me on Facebook

Instagram

My Instagram account is more personal than blog-related. Generally involving attempts at healthy and not-so-healthy(!) dinners and treats, a wee bit of Leila’s antics and not much else!

instagramlipglossiping

Click here to find and follow my Instagram account

 

However you choose to follow my blog, if you do – thank you very much!

A pyjama day of snots, coughs, fun and sniffles!

Posted by Lipglossiping On November - 26 - 2013

I did plan on catching up with my beauty blogging today, jumping back into the routine of photo-taking, editing, and tapping away at the keyboard that I’ve missed dearly.  What is it they say the best laid plans of mice and men?

Well, my plans went awry the moment Leila came snotting her way into our bedroom at 2 o’ clock this morning, coupled with a raging temperature and a hacking cough that made me want to throw one of us out of the window by the time 7am rolled around.  One quick phonecall to the school office later and our fates were decided… 11 hours later, we’re still in our pyjamas!

Starting with a bit of card-making (her current crafty obsession), some clothes-sorting and drawer rearranging… and a couple of books later… boredom struck.  Until I remembered a pack of Shrinkables that my friend Soraya from Powder Rooms had gifted Leila over the weekend.  If you’ve ever watched an empty crisp packet shrink in a pre-heated oven, you’ll know exactly what to expect from this novel little stocking filler!

shrinkables

We coloured and cut, scribbled and snipped until we were satisfied with our creations… our attention spans held strong until the last prince needed decorating, and while Madam was busying herself stealing a piece of her Dad’s fudge, I took over and ensured that the final Prince Charming was suitably suited and booted!  To be honest, it’s not often I can summon up the patience to do this kind of thing (making Play-Doh ice cream cones makes me want to go on a killing spree) but there was just enough colouring to keep her occupied and not too much to start her on a one-colour, screw-staying-in-the-lines rampage.

Three minutes in the oven later (our noses practically pressed to the glass) and we’d created a full set of mini (shrunk to about a 1/4 of their original size), hard plastic fairytale characters.  We discarded the stands (they weren’t very easy to attach) and Leila has lined them up lovingly along her windowsill, calling them her “stained glass” people.

shrinkables2

Shrinkables are available in a Fairy Tale and Pirate variety from powderrooms.com. Priced at only £5 each, they make an excellent and original stocking filler for both big *cough* and small kids alike!

All in all, a lazy afternoon well spent.  When was your last pyjama day and was it as fun as mine?!

Amazon Beauty Bestsellers!

Posted by Lipglossiping On October - 15 - 2013

It’s Amazon UK’s 15th Anniversary today and it’s testament to how far online shopping has evolved over the years that we can buy all manner of beauty products from the comfort of our sofas.  I wouldn’t generally call Amazon UK my first destination for beauty but it’s one of those sites that will often pop-up offering a bargain as a result of a quick internet search.

I thought I’d share with you today the top 15 beauty bestsellers on Amazon UK.  They’re a motley crew and the lack of colour cosmetics proves to me that there’s still nothing quite like “swatching” before purchasing when it comes to those colour-crucial purchases!

amazon-bestselling-beauty

Please excuse my random ordering in the above image, photoshop was not being my friend this morning!

Luxembourg – 15th October 2013: Today marks the 15th anniversary of the launch of Amazon.co.uk, and the site has revealed the top 15 bestselling beauty products from the site’s Beauty Store:

  1. Olay Regenerist Daily 3 Point Treatment Cream
  2. Riemann P20 Once a Day 10 Hours Protection SPF 20
  3. Tangle Teezer Original Professional Detangling Hairbrush
  4. Bomb Cosmetics Chocolate Ballotin Assortment Bath Gift Set
  5. Bomb Cosmetics Luxury Ballotin Assortment Bath Gift Set
  6. Olay Regenerist Daily 3 Point Treatment Super Serum
  7. MoroccanOil
  8. Fudge Matte Hed Firm Hold Texture Paste
  9. The Edge Cuticle Pusher
  10. Fudge Hair Shaper Strong Hold Texturising Creme
  11. Travalo Easy Refill Travel Perfume Atomizer Spray Bottle
  12. Avon Skin So Soft Dry Oil Body Spray
  13. Dead Sea Spa Magik Dead Sea Bath Salts
  14. Olay Regenerist Daily Regenerating Serum
  15. St Moriz Instant Self Tanning Mousse

Somewhat humourously, I’ve actually purchased four items from the above list myself… from Amazon UK!  I couldn’t even remember I had until I was clicking through the links (to nab the images) and kept seeing a little toolbar tip at the top of the screen giving me the option to click through and view my previous order!  Shopping problem?  Who me?

Have you bought anything from the list of Amazon UK’s Beauty Bestsellers?

Fenwick Beauty Week (28th September – 5th October)

Posted by Lipglossiping On September - 19 - 2013

As a terminally unfashionable sort of person, you know what you can do with your fashion weeks don’t you?  Which is why you didn’t read a single LFW-related post on this here blog this year.  Beauty weeks however… well, that’s a whole different ball game!

Fenwick (of Bond Street) have long been my favourite beauty destination whilst in London.  The venue is less frenetic than that of Selfridges, the atmosphere calmer.  The brands feel more “at home” and hand-picked, in a similar way to those at Liberty and they’re not afraid to clear their end of season beauty products at great prices.  From cosmetics to fragrances, I’ve picked up some wonderful high-end bargains over the years.

So what’s this Beauty Week about then?

In celebration of the launch of the store’s online beauty department, Fenwick will be hosting a week-long event devoted to demonstrating the latest beauty looks, skin-care, and makeup.  There will be a range of complimentary treatments available as well as demonstrations and surprise treats.  I’ve outlined the happenings below:

Saturday September 28

  • Martin Carter, pro-celebrity make up artist for Stila
  • Bethany Burrill, make-up artist for Estee Lauder
  • Ferdinand Cadavid and Chantecaille’s national artists
  • 12-3pm meet Ray Burns, founder X-Ray fragrances
  • Meet Sotiris Lovaris, national make-up artist for Lancome

Sunday September 29

  • Carl Grownwald, fragrance consultant for Dior
  • A free mini polish from Nails Inc. when you buy their monogram manicure kit

Monday September 30

  • Meet Gun Novak, founder of FACE Stockholm
  • The Clarins Beauty angels descend
  • Meet the Cosmetics 27 beauty technician

Tuesday October 1

  • Meet Julien Azencott, co-founder of customized Codage skincare
  • Meet Noelle Herzog, MD for Karin Herzog
  • Meet Midori Fujiyama from Shu Uemura

Wednesday October 2

  • Meet Dominic Devetta, co-creator of Shay & Blue
  • Guerlain’s Make-up artist, also October 3
  • Andre Suard from Geilly Green demonstrates hair up-do’s

Thursday October 3

  • Meet Dr. Marko Lens, founder of Zelens.
  • 1-6pm, meet Flavien, founder of Touche by Flavien hair
  • Christopher Howells, national artist from Laura Mercier

Friday October 4

  • Fred Letailleur, YSL’s international make-up artist
  • Benoit Dumont, Nars’s international make-up artist
  • James Read, founder of James Read Tan
  • Meet Andrea Maack, founder of Andrea Maack fragrances
  • Jo Martin, national make-up artist for Paul & Joe
  • Christopher Howells, national artist for Laura Mercier

Saturday October 5

  • Nars, James Read, Paul & Joe, Andrea Maack and Laura Mercier
  • Tina Sogaard from Karin Herzog

Rather helpfully, no appointments are necessary… so if you find yourself in the area with a spare half hour, you’ll be welcomed at any event.  For further information and more details, you can follow @FenwickBondSt on Twitter or ring the store on: 020 7629 9161

Will you be popping by for your beauty fix?

Follow Lipglossiping on Bloglovin/Email/Twitter etc etc!

Posted by Lipglossiping On September - 11 - 2013

How do you keep subscribed to my (almost) daily updates.  You know, since 2009 there have been over 2750 of them!  That’s a lot of blogging, think of all the things I could have been doing with my life instead?!  No actually, don’t…

What I want to know is… how do you follow my inane ramblings?  In case you’re in need of a little update… here are some of the ways we can keep in touch…

Bloglovin’

bloglovin

Bloglovin’ is am easy way to find and store all of your favourite blogs in one place.  It’s quick to logon and check for updates, giving you the gist of a post so you can decide whether or not you’re interested in clicking through to read more.

click here to subscribe via Bloglovin’

Email

For the least amount of effort on your part, subscribe to my daily mail out.  You’ll only receive one email per day (and that’s only if I’ve updated!)

emailsub

Any posts will be waiting for you to read from the comfort of your email inbox whenever you get a spare minute.

click here to subscribe to my daily email

Twitter

Incase you don’t know, I’m a wee bit of a Twitter addict (50,000+ tweets and counting!)  If you have any questions or want to shout at me about something, this is the best place to find me!  I use Twitter to promote my latest posts with a single link and automate a couple of links a day to older posts that you may not have picked up on the first time around.

liptwitter

Twitter is also where I link extremely time-sensitive info (deals, voucher codes etc.) and retweet lots of completely and utterly fascinating (honest!) snippets that I discover!

click here to follow me on Twitter

Facebook

I don’t really use Facebook if I’m honest…. but if you’re an avid fan, you can follow my page which will, by the power of the magical internet, feed my latest updates into your timeline.

facebooklipglossiping

click here to follow me on Facebook

Instagram

My Instagram account is more personal than blog-related.  Generally involving attempts at healthy and not-so-healthy(!) dinners and treats, a wee bit of Leila’s antics and not much else!

instagramlipglossiping

Click here to find and follow my Instagram account

 

However you choose to follow my blog, if you do – thank you very much!

Beauty most… torturous?

Posted by Lipglossiping On September - 9 - 2013

God, I love a beauty gimmick. In reality, I generally hate them… but it’s the promise of pure innovation that I just can’t resist!

beauty-contraptionjpg

It looks a bit like a handbag-sized torture device doesn’t it?

Have you already spotted it online?  Can you guess what it is?

Leila’s big adventure…

Posted by Lipglossiping On September - 1 - 2013

I didn’t think it would bother me.  I thought that I was immune from the neuroses of the Mum at the school gates, sniffing into her hanky and waving goodbye to a piece of her woman-hood.  I mean… seriously, I’m better than that?  I don’t need validation through my offspring!  Sure, I’m not the self-validating “woman” I should be… heck, the word “womb” still makes me feel a bit squirmy, stuff of a feminist’s wet dream I am not… but neither am I reliant on other people to make me complete.

And yet, as I sit here… a few nights before Leila starts school, I’m a mess.

You see, I feel like I’m losing my little friend.  My beautiful little creature.  Someone I’ve nurtured, led, and loved for the past 4-years.  It’s not even as though I’m letting her spread her wings to go and fly amongst the clouds.  We’re being parted… unwillingly.  Whenever I ask her about school, she says… “it’s boring”.  She had a couple of trial days, and on the basis of this, has decided that school involves never leaving you chair as you please… putting your hand up to go to the toilet, and being told what to do and when to do it.  And let’s face it… she’s a little bit right.

A wee bit rebellious in my psyche, I think of school as a fast-track to learning how to “sit still, shut up, and listen”.  Ideal for working life.  Wear a tie, wear a blazer… do what you’re told, and conform.  But at the same time, it does give you (in a round-about way) the tools to question our world… the most powerful gift of education.  Leila loves to learn, I watch her confidence grow with every number and letter mastered.  I don’t push her… I’m a huge underachiever myself, quietly disappointing people around me but learning to the beat of my own drum.  She thrives, as most children do, from praise… and the satisfaction that she’s doing a good job.  How could I ever wish for her not to experience that joy?

Of course, I don’t.  But I worry….

I worry that she won’t make friends readily.  I worry that she won’t have anyone to sit with at lunch-time.  I worry that she won’t push herself to make connections… just reach out Leila, please reach out.

She has a good heart, one of the best I’ve come across.  I say that with as much bias as I do earnest-ness.  She has a kindness in her that makes her give pause after a strop… a sense of right and wrong that allows her, despite her young age, to apologise without prompting when she’s done wrong.  I’m not saying that she’s rare… but she is a good egg.  That’s all I want for her… to love, and to be loved.

So my darling girl… as I prepare to leave you outside your classroom on your first day of school.  Shoes as shiny as they can be, lunchbox as imaginative as it is tasty…. show your true colours to your friends.  Let them know that you are good, that you won’t ridicule, that you won’t judge without good reason.  You will go a long way.  A long way.  And ultimately, you will be happy.

And then I will be happy.  And proud to watch you every step of the way.

Good luck Leila, you’ll be grand!

A little TKMaxx splurge on random goodies!

Posted by Lipglossiping On August - 31 - 2013

I love TKMaxx more than I love almost anything. Whenever we nip into town, Paul takes L off to the nearby kids play place for an hour and laughs at me because he knows what’s coming before I’ve even opened my mouth…

“I’ll just catch up with you, I’m just gonna pop in here first” I say, gesturing wildly and excitedly at the entrance to TKMaxx.

You see, it’s a bit like one of those Lucky Dip boxes at school fetes. Except you don’t even have to pay 50p to see what they’ve got in stock!

My usual modus operandi once in store, is to head straight for the beauty bits. In our local store, this area seems to get less stock each time I look which makes me do a sad because I bloody love rummaging around the red stickers, glaring disapprovingly at other shoppers who think it’s ok to swatch on the spot. There’s a special place in Hell for people who swatch, spritz, or dig their nails into stock in TKMaxx. I hope it’s extra hot.

So anyway, beauty bits first… then home stuff… candles mostly. Where our TKMaxx is light on the beauty stuff, it goes heavy on the candles. There are always lovely bits from Bahoma, English Eccentrics, Parks, Jonathon Ward, Tocca, and various unknowns that only reveal their true delights when you have a sneaky sniff.

Finally, I move on to the kitchen stuff… I bought all my Circulon pans from TKMaxx, slowly building up my collection as and when funds allowed for it. Anyway, here’s what I treated myself to yesterday.

IMG_2696

IMG_2689

First up is the beautiful candle from the National Trust.  One sniff and I was sold, Beechwood and Bramble is gorgeously green without being fresh… it’s earthy, damp-smelling, woodsy… it’s a bit like Diptyque’s Feu de Bois but with some blackberry sprinkled in for good measure.  I love it so much, that I logged straight online and bought the matching EdT when I got home!

I spotted my new iPhone case from a mile off, well… in that colourway, you would wouldn’t you?!  The coral/orange chevrons screamed at me from across the aisle.  It’s from US Brand Agent18, really good quality and you can log-on to their website and download matching wallpapers for most of their designs.

IMG_2690

Korres offshoot Kings & Queens remain one of my favourite “toiletry” brands, I may have mentioned this one or 574895 times before!  Usually I see sets of showee-gel minis on the shelves in TKMaxx but whenever I see a full-size product, I’m hard-pushed not to pounce on it.   The shower gels are my favourites but there will always be room in my bathroom for a Tsar Peter Tobacco Soap!

IMG_2691

The Zirh Warrior Collection shower gels are actually aimed at a more masculine audience but I fell in love with the zingy citrus scent and couldn’t resist adding it to my basket.  I umm’ed and ahh’ed between this and some verbena bath salts (beautiful glass bottle, to-die-for scent) but I don’t take many baths!

IMG_2693

My last acquisition was Jamie’s America which I nabbed after seeing some reviews online which talked about how he’d taken the oft-maligned US cuisine classics and showed how they can shrug off their “junk” food labels.  Waldorf Salad prepared with low-fat yoghurt for one.  The recipes are diverse and the photographs inside, beautiful.  I know Jamie’s been working his hardest at making himself look (and sound) like a massive tool recently, but my soft spot for him is showing no signs of firming up!

What was the last thing you bought in TKMaxx?

RANDOM

The Lipstick League – Week of 3.9.12

Question of the Week: – Your three favorite haircare lines, name them… Answer: – I don’t go that crazy for hair products and I’m really …

Wordless Wednesday

(a.k.a – I’ve missed my camera)

Red Lips Day 8: Estee Lauder Pure Color Lipstick in Extravagant Berry

A rich, berry red with a small amount of shimmer… I’ve worn this beautiful shade plenty of times since I received it at a press …

Sugarpill Cosmetics Starling & Goldilux FOTD

Just a quickie to show-off my lovely new Sugarpill loose eyeshadows (proper review and swatches coming VERY soon!) Eyes: Sugarpill Cosmetics in Starling on the …

The BIG Skincare Mystery, revealed!

Remember this post?  The mystery brand conducted a huge facebook-driven campaign involving over 500,000 secret samples being sent out to households across the UK.  Feedback …

NOTD - Nails Inc. - Chinatown

I didn’t appreciate this colour fully until I was out in the sunlight the day after painting. Wowee, vivid blue flashes… just stunning! Application was …

Food Friday: Chicken & Aubergine Bake

I’ve never had aubergine before.  Not once.  I think that’s pretty impressive vegetable-dodging for a 32yr old even if I do say so myself!  You …

SpaRitual – It’s Raining Men NOTD

I’ve started delving into my new acquisitions from Pro Beauty and first up is SpaRitual’s It’s Raining Men – a swirl of pastels that look, …

A rare video (eek, argh, cringe, etc, etc...)

I woke up on Saturday morning and decided that I wanted to make a video.  Infact, I was completely inspired by Jerry’s videos over at …

Review: Benefit Watt's Up!

Last month saw the launch of a new highlighter from Benefit, a brand that have enjoyed great success in the past with their highlighting products …

POPULAR

CLOSED: Competition Time: Givenchy Very Irresistible L'eau en Rose Perfume!

Want to really spoil Mum this Mother’s Day?  Or perhaps you just want to spoil yourself?  It’s ok… I won’t judge… there are plenty of …

CLOSED - Win it! The Body Shop Expert Brush Collection

I don’t know about you, but I woke up this morning with a distinct “Hello Monday morning, I’ve been expecting you…” kinda feeling.  Maybe it’s …

Win a gorgeous "glow" trio with prizes from Urban Decay, New CID, & Arbonne!

COMPETITION NOW CLOSED! WINNER IS: “IZABELLA” (COMMENT #96045) – WINNER HAS BEEN EMAILED!   It’s still January, the MET office have just issued yet another …

Hello? Is this thing on?

Phew, that was a little unexpected. For those of you who haven’t had the misfortune of reading my hand-wringing tweets and woe-ridden facebook updates, let …

Big savings on French Pharmacy brands, win my Escentual.com top picks!

I’m of the firm opinion that for the money, French pharmacy brands offer some of the best solutions for diffcult skin-types. Escentual.com have long been …

Win it! 3 EcoTools Bamboo Bronzer Brushes to win!

I’ve written about these before, you know I love them, I want you to love them too! So why not have a go at winning …

FOTD Busting out of the comfort zone!

You may recall my bitter moans last week about how when presented with a rare opportunity to spend an indecent amount of time playing with …

Dear Obesity...

We have been together for over 20 years, our lives so entwined that I’ve never been sure how to live without you.  I would like …

Urban Decay The Black Palette - Photos & Swatches

The soon-to-be-released Black Palette from US eyeshadow maestro’s Urban Decay is an altogether darker affair than the recent Naked set… The Black Palette includes 6, …

Urban Decay 15-Year Anniversary 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil Set

This here post be ALL about the pictures… The Packaging…

  • Categories

  • Archives

  • Admin

  • Ads