28 June 2016

Making My Home Summer Ready With Ocean Loans

Okay so this is like, my 9th attempt at writing this post. 

I wish I was joking.

I just can't seem to get it flow or even make sense. It keeps coming out a bit, well...bitty. This probably has something to do with the fact that my brain has turned into mush trying to process everything that is going on at the moment.

They say baby brain is an actual ailment, well what about bride brain? Is that a 'thing' or nah?

I don't think it helps that my head is still slightly fuzzy from Saturday's hen do shenanigans either. 

Make of that what you will but it may or may not have involved copious amounts of alcohol and I may or may not have spent most of yesterday (Sunday) in my pit, feeling sorry for myself.

So please bear with me whilst I try and unscramble my thoughts and put them down into something worth a read.

I shall start with the backstory. Last month a very exciting email from Ocean Loans marketing team popped into my inbox, asking if I would like to take part in their latest project. A project which aims to bring our homes to the fore this Summer. To give our beloved houses some TLC for the new season.

As part of this project they very generously offered to gift me £50 to splash out on homeware of my choice to sass up a part of my home and make it Summer ready. 

Obviously I said 'ERM HELL YES' because 1. homeware is my favourite thing to spend my money on and 2. I bloody love the concept. I mean, we spend time, dollar and effort trying to make ourselves 'summer ready' (sometimes to no avail - looking at you wax strips) so why not do the same to our living spaces, our homes, where we spend a huge chunk of our lives?

I decided to solely concentrate on mine and Ed's bedroom as being mostly grey and white, it was screaming out for an injection of colour.

Because, to me, that is what Summer homeware is; bright, vibrant pieces that help turn your living space into a lush, subtropical paradise for when y'know, it's a little less than tropical outside.

Here's what I bought:

Initially I was going to get a bright patterned duvet set and then try to find bits and bobs to go with it but, after a lengthy discussion with my Mum (she's an interior design guru) we decided that a better, more cost-effective option would be to buy white bedding and then jazz it up with some funky accessories.

Plus, you can't beat fresh white bedding can you? it's so inviting, it brightens up a room instantaneously and it's really easy to dress up for different seasons.

This white duvet set from George home is amazing value for money. In my opinion the pintuck detailing adds interest and makes it look more plush and expensive, like something you may find in a hotel. 

Okay so the material itself is a tad on the thin side but it is 100% cotton so it is soft against the skin.

This weave design multi-coloured throw is the epitome of Summer. I love how the vivid colours look entwined together; they contrasts beautifully against the crisp white bedding.

The quality of it is amazing too for the price. It's thick and really soft, much softer than it looks. 

Well, it would have been a sin not to buy the matching cushion. Again, I was pleasantly surprised by the quality and also the size - it's much bigger than I thought it would be. 

Scatter cushion, it is not.

I really feel that this fluffy cushion helps to bring the whole look together as it draws out the teal in the throw. It also adds more texture and depth and again, it's a decent size to rest your head on.

It's super soft, tactile and such a steal at £5.99. 

It was actually my Mum who spotted this gem lurking on the shelves of B&M. We both liked the bold chevron pattern and agreed that with it's cute little slogan it was perfect for this project. 

It's also a useful thing to have lying around the house, ready for serving up sandwiches, bbq food and the likes.

Again the matching mason jar is a fun, usable piece. The flamingo motif ties in nicely with the flamingo lights that we wrapped around the bed frame.

What do you think of when you think Summer homeware?

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22 June 2016

A-Z Of Happiness

Oh Man, it's happened again. My get up and go has well and truly got up and fucked off out of here. And all that is left is a whole lot of apathy. 

At a time where excitement should be vigorously flowing through my veins, I feel nothing. I have allowed myself to become overwhelmed again and as a consequence, I feel deflated; like someones stuck a whopping great pin in me. 

I will be fine again soon, there's no doubt about it. There are a handful of people that I can rely on to cheer me up and get me up and running again, with a new found zest for life. 

Plus, I've got too much to look forward to. It's my hen do this weekend for starters. And if that doesn't put a smile on my face (granted, it will probably scare me in the process) then I don't know what will.

However, in a bid to give myself a little mental boost in the meantime I've listed some happy things.

I stole the idea from Katie but I'm sure she won't mind. You can read her list here.

Animals - because 9/10 they are better than humans. Just being around animals makes me feel calm, happy and like the world isn't such an awful place after all.
Bargain - there's no better feeling than knowing that you have managed to nab something for a lot less than it's worth.
Curry - because you just can't beat a good curry. Especially a fragrant Thai green curry with coconut rice - yum.
Documentaries - anyone that knows me will know that I love to sink my teeth into a good, meaty documentary. Preferably with a sizable slab of dark chocolate wedged next to me.
Ed - my soulmate, my rock and my best friend all rolled into one incredible human being *vom*. He also has the patience of a saint, of which I am forever grateful for.
Family & friends - life wouldn't be worth living without special people to share it with.
GHDs - helping to keep my frizz at bay since 2008.
Home - It had always been a dream of mine to own a house, complete with garden. And now the dream has been achieved It's everything I wanted it to be and then some. I love my home and I'm really enjoying putting my stamp on it.
Italy - the beautiful country in which Ed and I will be tying the knot next month.
Jeans - no wardrobe is complete without several pairs of jeans. I practically live in my high-waisted skinny jeans. 
Kopparbergs - arguably the best alcoholic beverage. Just last Wednesday I was in need of a post-work pick me up and it came in the form of an ice-cold strawberry and lime Kopparberg.
Lemons - the smell, the taste. Anything 'lemony' is guaranteed to go down a treat with me.
Music - I may not follow any particular bands or artists now but I still believe that life is enriched by music and would be bland without it.
'No pressure, no diamonds' - my life motto, my mantra. I love this phrase so much I even had it tattooed onto my arm as a constant reminder.
Outdoors - seeing things, doing things. Being out in the open is good for the body and the soul.
Peanut butter - food of the gods, enough said. Oh and it's got to be crunchy!
Quiet - being an introvert, regular quiet time is essential to allow me to recharge my batteries.
Rabbits - well, rabbit. My house bunny Duke is the sweetest creature on earth.
Summer - or should I say sunshine? The sun's rays are like little injections of vitamin D goodness. Everything seems better and brighter on a Sunny day.
Tea - us Britons swear by this stuff. Got a problem? Talk it over a cup of tea. Hard day at work? Sit down with a cuppa. Tea cures all, just sayin'.
Underwear - more specifically, matching underwear. When I've got a matching set on I feel together and ready to tackle the day ahead. Amplify this feeling by 9457 if they are new.
Vacations - aka holidays. Sometimes a holiday is what keeps me going through the tedious, relentless battle that is adulting.
Writing - one of the best forms of expression. It helps me to get my thoughts and feelings down into words.
Xmas - I may not be a child anymore but I still adore Christmas and all things associated with it.
Yoga - never thought I'd say this but after going to Yoga several times I can see the appeal. It's the perfect way to relax in the evening and it's definitely making me more in tune with my body.
Zumba - my new Friday night activity. Energetic, fun and most importantly, it's helping me stay trim for the wedding.

And there it is; my A-Z of happiness. What things never fail to make you happy?

Wish me luck for my hen do please, I'm scared. Here's hoping they go easy on the penis paraphernalia.

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15 June 2016

My Wedding Travel Box || Life Memories Box Company

When it comes to my personal life I am the worlds worst procrastinator. Wait, should that be best procrastinator? I don't know. Anyway, my point is that I'm the type of person who will still actively take a nap despite having a to-do list as long as my arm.

It is a terrible habit but what can I say? I'm easily overwhelmed by life.

I've well and truly outdone myself this time though. I've been putting off sorting out the last few details for my WEDDING. That's right, I've been postponing arranging what will inevitably be the biggest and best day of my life so far.

And now it's hit me that It's exactly one month away today. Well actually no, realisation struck me last Thursday at approx 00:30 whilst I was in bed trying to sleep. I'm not gonna lie, there were tears.

It obviously gave me a well-needed kick up the bum as the next morning I frantically compiled a list of everything that was left to organise. And actually, it wasn't nearly as bad/long as I thought it would be - is it ever?

First on my list was to figure out how to transport the most expensive dress I've ever owned (and let's face it, ever will own) from A to B (A being Home and B being Italy.)

My initial plan was to ship it over to my wedding planners office, along with our table decorations, photo props and polaroid cameras. That way, it would be there and waiting for me when I arrive in Ravello. A hassle free plan.

Unless it got damaged on route that is or, even worse, if it got lost in transit. CAN YOU IMAGINE. Oh the heartache, it's not even worth thinking about it.

So that idea was well and truly flung out the window. This emotional bride-to-be has to be able to take her dress on the plane with her.

And that's where Life Memories Box Company come in with their range of wedding dress travel boxes.

Not only are these boxes sturdy and practical (they have been designed specifically to meet airline cabin luggage allowances) but they are also little works of art in themselves. As soon as I received my box it was clear to see how much care attention & pride Julie & her team put into their work - no wonder they are endorsed by Thomson and First Choice Weddings!

After spending ages perusing all the gorgeous designs that they have to offer I opted for this *personalised travel box, adorned with an eloquent butterfly design that also displays the words 'my wedding dress' in a beautiful font. Underneath it has my name and the date and location of our wedding which makes it extra special and unique to our big day.

Basically, I can't wait to flaunt it at all the unsuspecting folk at the airport. "Look at me, who's getting married? That's right; I'm getting married."

The price of a box includes standard delivery (2-4 working days) and also:
  • 20 sheets of acid free tissue, to carefully wrap your dress in
  • Instructions on how to box your dress correctly, ready for travel
  • A choice of 11 colour themes (obviously I went for purple)

There are also several optional extras available so that you can personalise your box further. These include: security straps (for that extra piece of mind), shoe & tiara dust bags, an array of delicate charms and my personal favourite; a just married sign that you stick onto your box on your return journey.

How adorable is that? It's such a lovely, novel idea.

I haven't packed up my dress yet as It's currently being altered but I am completely over the moon with my box and all the little details. I'm 100% confident that it will serve me (and my dress) perfectly. Not only for my wedding day but for many years afterwards as a keepsake box for all of our wedding mementos.

Honestly, my experience with Life Memories Box Company has been faultless and I would recommend them to any bride-to-be having a destination wedding - or even any wedding in the UK where a bit of travel is involved.

Oh and I will definitely be letting you all know how I get on when it comes to packing up my dress. 

Eeeek, not long now.
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* This stunning wedding dress box was kindly gifted to me by The Life Memories Box Company but all views and opinions are entirely my own.

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