Sunday, 20 December 2015

CELEBRATE YOU


Around this time of year, we all start reflecting on the past year and everything that has gone on. But mainly, we start thinking ahead to next year and what
we'd like to change. With 2016 fast approaching - seriously, how crazy is that? - I began wondering why it is we are so quick to pick what we want to be different. Which is why I decided to set you all - and myself too - a challenge.
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Sunday, 13 December 2015

This Christmas I'll be....


When deciding what post I wanted to write this week, I couldn't quite decide how to go about it. I've been wanted to talk about several different aspects of my plans for Christmas time - from eating to reading - and while many people have dedicated specific posts to these types of activities, I decided in the end to clump it all together in a bid to get people excited for all the somewhat hedonistic period where we all like to let go.
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Sunday, 6 December 2015

Christmas with the Bodyshop!





 Naturally, as a blogger it's really nice being sent things. But what's even better is when your sent things by a brand that use and enjoy anyway. This is why I was so thrilled when a package from The Body Shop landed on my doorstep. I've only been blogging for about six months, so stuff like that is very exciting for me! I use both the Bodyshop instablur primer and BB cream consistently and it's always one of the first places I head to for gifts at Christmas time as there are usually lots of great offers and options people are bound to love!
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Sunday, 29 November 2015

Christmas Haul!


No longer can you tell me it's too early for Christmas. You can't switch on the TV without their being adverts luring you with food you can't wait to fill up on or products you've scrawled on your Christmas list. While it's only recently I've been feeling fully Christmassy, I've been keeping my eye out for anything worth nabbing and storing away ready for December and now I'm ready to show you my little collection!
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Sunday, 22 November 2015

KITCHEN TOUR!


This week, we have been in our first home together for one whole month. I'll be honest, it whizzed by as there was just so much going on including getting our puppy, Luna (meet her here!). It's been a massive life change and I've already learnt so much in the four weeks we have been here. I think I've definitely changed for the better though, I feel like I'm less selfish as I have others (boyfriend + dog!) to consider. I spend less time on the internet (though maybe that's because we have none...) and more time appreciating just 'being.'

With this though, I have also lost lay ins, being able to starfish alone in my bed and not having to share my chocolate. The truth is though , I don't actually think I mind so much.

Anyway being the nosy bugger I am, I personally love taking a look into people's homes so thought I'd give you the chance to have a little look around my kitchen and the bits we've picked up.
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Sunday, 15 November 2015

Photo Diary #2 + meet my puppy!

Now today’s post is a bit different. Call it an update if you will, but it’s a chatty post of what I’ve been up to lately as well as some recent big news and a special someone I’d like you all to meet! I really enjoy these peaks into people’s lives so I hope you do too.

(From left to right)
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Sunday, 8 November 2015

Say Cheerz to the memories! + GIVEAWAY!


I take a lot of photos. And I mean a lot. I have this innate need to preserve memories. I think it comes from my fear of forgetting. So more often than not, I will whip out my camera or phone to capture anything I want to freeze in time. Over the last couple of years, I was fed up of my photos sitting unloved on my hard drive and began getting them printed so I could store them in Albums and flick through them easily. 
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Wednesday, 4 November 2015

Wishlist - Autumn Edition

It can't be just me that can't believe it's Autumn already, right? I genuinely feel like Summer was gone in the blink of an eye! But anyway, a new season means new things to get excited about and  it's a good excuse to go shopping. Feast your eyes on my Autumn wish list! 



Autumn Wishlist

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Sunday, 1 November 2015

BAKING: Frozen Inspired Cupcakes!


My niece Ava is one and a half years old. My niece Ava loves Frozen. Or rather 'Fro-Fro' as she calls it. Obviously she's too young to actually know what's going on, but other than Peppa Pig it's the only thing she will stand and watch transfixed. So these fluffy, yummy cupcakes are inspired by Frozen, for Ava. 

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Wednesday, 28 October 2015

OCTOBER FAVOURITES

I've got a real mixture of favourites for you this month: skincare, entertainment, homeware and more! Welcome to my October Favourites!


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Sunday, 25 October 2015

Tips for Buying your First Home!


I'm slightly nervous about posting this because in a way, it could be seen as boring. But this is something that would have helped me out personally and if this helps even one person, that's good enough for me!
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Wednesday, 21 October 2015

TRAVEL: Nassau, The Bahamas


When planning our Florida holiday, we always knew as it was such a long way to go for a week that it would make sense to have two weeks. We toyed with the idea of spending both weeks in Orlando but decided that it would be too much. My Dad suggested travelling to another country for a week and eventually it was settled that we would go to the Bahamas! It was only a 50 minute flight from Florida on the day and it was so strange to end up at in a country that is so very different from America!
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Wednesday, 14 October 2015

Harry Potter Haul!


During my trip to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter which you can read about here,  I was faced with several Harry Potter themed shops in both Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley. Now there was no chance I wasn't going to be leaving America without anything in my suitcase!

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Sunday, 11 October 2015

TRAVEL: The Wizarding World of Harry Potter


Before I start this post, I thought it would be wise to give my love of Harry Potter some context. My first experience was actually with the films. When the Philosophers Stone was released in 2001, I was eight years old and probably one of the last people to go along and see the film, I really wasn't that bothered. But coming out of the cinema with my Dad, I was absolutely hooked and immediately wanted to read all the books. I think there were only about four out at that point, but borrowing them from a friend I flew through with them, drinking up every word from J.K who quickly became one of my favourite authors and dreaming of getting my Hogwarts letter. 
 
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Wednesday, 7 October 2015

MAC and Sephora Haul


Something I was really looking forward to when visiting America last month was the shopping. I knew that the US would have so much that we don't in England and boy was I right! It actually got to a point where at times I would walk into a shop, wander around and then walk out again. There was just too much! Somewhere I dived straight for though was Sephora, of which we don't have one of and I'd never been in before. Imagine the heart eyed emoji, that was literally me as I took in the rows and rows of make-up brands that I'd only ever read about online. 

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Sunday, 4 October 2015

TRAVEL: The Cheesecake Factory!


There was no doubt in my mind where I wanted to visit food-wise whilst we were in Orlando. I'd been wanting to go to The Cheesecake Factory for ages and was pleased to find there was one close to where we were staying. 
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Wednesday, 30 September 2015

September Favourites

This September favourites is a bit of a holiday-special one, as for most of the month I was out of the country sunning myself! This also meant I had access to a lot more amazing items that I wouldn't normally and found a lot of exciting new things! Take a look below to find out what I've been loving lately.

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Sunday, 27 September 2015

TRAVEL: Arriving in Orlando & Magic Kingdom


Years ago,  my Dad began planning a spectacular family holiday for us. And on September the 2nd, that holiday finally came around! Myself, my boyfriend, my sister and my Dad set off early Wednesday morning to Gatwick airport to begin our very long journey to Orlando.

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Wednesday, 23 September 2015

BAKING: Giant Cookie!



Now I love cookies. Any sort of cookies and I'll be sniffing it out, ready to chomp down on one, just call me Angelica!  (I really hope you get that reference!) So when hunting down for my next bake for Musings & More, a giant cookie seemed the obvious choice! If from the UK, you should be familiar with cookie shop called Millie's Cookies and this tastes exactly the same. No more will I be shelling out £15 for one of theirs! This recipe is incredibly easy to do and takes no time at all to whip up. It also helps that it tastes bloody incredible!

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Sunday, 13 September 2015

TRAVEL: Throwback to Paris


















Last year my wonderful boyfriend took me to Paris for my 21st Birthday where he organised every little thing by himself. To this day, it is probably one of the most amazing things anyone has ever done for me and I was totally blown away.


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Wednesday, 9 September 2015

How to stay Motivated


Staying motivated is something that everyone at some point struggles with in life. Sometimes we just aren't in the right mind frame to be able to push ourselves and this isn't exactly surprising given all that life throws as us. So I decided to put together a post that may give a little assistance in staying motivated.


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Sunday, 6 September 2015

Holiday Make Up




As you read this, I will holidaying in Orlando and running around Harry Potter world like a crazed child. Never fear though as I have several posts to go up while I am away for you to enjoy

If your wondering while I'm doing a Holiday Make Up post now of all times - well, lets keep positive! According to trusty Google, the last day of Summer is officially the 23rd of September so maybe we'll see some more sun before then. Anyway, like many people, my make up routine differs quite considerably when I'm on holiday, so I thought I'd let you take a look into my holiday make up bag!

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Wednesday, 2 September 2015

10 Facts about Me


1. I am only 5'1" in height which can be the biggest pain! I would much rather be at least 5'5" but I'm working with it...

2. Horrors and thrillers are my favourite type of film to watch, screw the Notebook, if there's blood and gore - I'm there!

3. I can't play a single instrument (does the triangle count!?) and I wish I had taken up something like piano when I was younger.

4. I adore chocolate and I've never even thought about giving it up for any reason. I don't have a particular favourite, but on certain days I will have my mind set on what I want, whether that be Cadburys, Galaxy, Milka, Lindt...

5. I went to University in Newcastle and I miss the city so much! There's so much to do there, it just doesn't compare to my hometown.

6. I love quotes and have a huge bank of them saved in a document on my computer. It also makes me feel better when I can find a quote that accurately sums up how I am feeling that day.

7. The Dark Knight has to be one of my favourite films ever. Heath Ledger is incredible in it and I genuinely don't see how anyone could play a better Joker. Sorry, Jared Leto!

8. I am a massive Harry Potter geek and rarely get any HP related trivia questions wrong. Go on, try me! 

9. When I was younger, I once saw a boy at school's pupil bleeding and from there onwards, I have had this massive fear of any eye related injuries or even when someone just stretches open their eyelids at me *shudders.*

10. Unfortunately I am an extremely fussy eater, which my mother loathes. My taste buds seem to struggle with a lot of different foods which mean I am far from adventurous with my palette and can often make life difficult!

                                                                           -----

So that's a little about me! Tell me an interesting fact about you in the comments!
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Saturday, 29 August 2015

August Favourites

August is nearing it's end which means one thing - it's time for my August Favourites!



I was determined to hunt down the Lush store on Oxford High Street when we were in London recently and I'm surprised I managed to contain myself and only buy two bath bombs! It's three floors of gorgeous smelling products and there's so many new and different things to look at compared to your regular Lush store. I knew I had to contain myself so picked up the Experimenter and Intergalactic. Wanting to make the most of them, so far I've only used the Experimenter. This consists of five of the most vibrant colours that leaves your bath in a psychedelic frenzy. It's truly mesmerising to watch and well, just look at the results below! As usual with lush products, your nose will thank you for the fragrant smell it leaves as you relax back into the warm water. 


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Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Photo Diary #1

(From Left to Right)
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Sunday, 23 August 2015

BAKING: Crunchy Caramel Bites



These yummy bites are deliciously devilish - packed full of nuts, caramel, biscuits and chocolate, what's not to like? It's also a really simple recipe to do and you can easily swap ingredients to other choices you might want to try like coconut or peanut butter.


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Wednesday, 19 August 2015

Top Three Summer Reads

books


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Sunday, 16 August 2015

Homeware Haul

Shopping for homeware has quickly become one of my favourite things to do. As you may or may not know, in a few months I will be moving out of my family home and into my own little house with Matt. This has been such a long process for us and it's been exhausting! But finally, we are at the fun part, buying bits and pieces for our home, something I have been really looking forward to. It's actually really difficult to shop for a place that you've not even technically been in yet (the house is a new build), but I've not let this stop me, much to Matt's dismay! Having picked up some really lovely bits recently, I thought I would let you take a look into my shopping bags!


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Wednesday, 12 August 2015

Skincare Saviours



It's only in recent years that I began really taking notice of my skincare routine and appreciating how important it is. It's fairly simple stuff, but I finally feel like I'm in a pretty good place with it all, so thought I would talk through the products that are firm favourites in my bathroom cupboard.

Garnier Micellar Cleansing Water

This is the very first thing I reach for at the end of the day and I wouldn't use anything else, especially for such a good price! I find two or three cotton pads with this stuff will remove all of my make-up effortlessly and painlessly, even tough mascara like Benefit's They're Real. It has no perfume to it either, which for me is preferable as it can often be overpowering. I really do think it is the most perfect dupe for Bioderma and it's the third of the price of it too which is a bonus.

Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser

I never really got into the habit of cleansing until a few months ago when talking to my Mum and I decided to give it a go. Her brand of choice was Liz Earle, so naturally I borrowed her bottle for the night. It didn't take me long to be impressed with this, which probably isn't surprising given how many people rave about it. Made with rosemary, chamomile, cocoa butter and eucalyptus oil, the cleanser has a luxurious feel to it and you really feel like your in a spa, giving yourself a little treat. It leaves my skin smoother, clearer and brighter which was just what I wanted. This is also really great at ridding you face of any excess make-up still lingering.

Every morning and night I gently massage a couple of pumps of the cleanser into my dry skin before wiping a warm muslin or flannel across my face and then patting it dry with a towel. My boyfriend has even tried it a couple times and liked it so much that I even brought him the men's version for his birthday!

Some people may find this a little pricey, but I really think spending more money on a product that leaves your skin in such good condition is well worth it, especially when you think about all the make up we throw on our faces!


Aveeno Daily Moisturising Lotion

Before this product, I always used to struggle with dry skin around my nose so I began the search for something to rid any dry spots completely. I was flicking through a magazine one day and spotted an advert for Aveeno which promised to do exactly what I wanted. I don't tend to go by advertisements, preferring to read reviews before buying something but this time I just went out and brought it. My instincts must have on the right track as this stuff is brilliant! It really has replenished my skin and I only have to use a small amount which I rub into my skin before I go to bed. It also absorbs really quickly so there's no need to spend much time waiting for it to soak in. You can use this all over your body, whether you want silky smooth legs or just on some stubborn areas that won't shift. Aveeno have quite a few different options so I would definitely check them out in your local boots or superdrug.
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Sunday, 9 August 2015

TRAVEL: A Trip to Scotland


Being a long drive from where we live, we decided to go up on the Sunday and stay in a hotel in Carlisle. The next day, we continued the journey and after picking up some groceries, we checked into the resort. We were staying in a gorgeous lodge, nestled deep in the trees. The rooms were spacious and comfortably kitted out with everything thing we could want. The best parts had to be the private sauna and hot tub – hidden away from any onlookers so you could really relax.

The resort had plenty of activities from you to choose from for a fee. Matt had brought along his clubs especially for their golf course and he was really impressed with it all. Together, we went along to archery which was good fun (I felt a bit like Katniss – except rubbish!) and hired out the tennis courts for an hour which were both a really reasonable price.



There is also a pool free to use for guests with a sauna, steam room and gym which are all really high quality facilities. Although we didn’t venture into the onsite restaurant ourselves, it sat overlooking the Piperdam’s loch and the menu sounded really lovely.



The true beauty of the place only hit us when we ventured up a mountain half way through the week. I’m not one for long walks (I was enticed by a particularly delicious picnic) but upon reaching the top and the view, I was so pleased we’d done it. The sun was shining, making everything even more beautiful and we settled down with our picnic to really enjoy our surroundings.
If you were thinking of booking Piperdam, I would advise you prepare for no internet whatsoever and very little phone signal at times but there is something quite nice about being out of touch with reality for a while. It’s easy to forget to look up from our various electric devices and really take in what is going on around us. And where better to do that than somewhere as picturesque?

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Wednesday, 5 August 2015

Wishlist - Summer Edition

Summer wish list


Naked Smokey – As the proud owner (and lover) of all three current Naked palettes, I feel it is necessary, no obligatory, that I must have Naked Smokey too, so this is particularly high on my wish list. Even the packaging is enough to make me drool, let alone the twelve stunning shades. I need. Now.

Instax Mini 8 - I shouldn’t want this, but I do. The camera roll for these things are pricey at around £13.95 for a roll of 20 photos (I can practically hear Snapfish shuddering). But I’ve always loved Polaroid pictures, not to mention the array ofpastel colours it comes in means it even looks nice sitting on your shelf.   

Charlotte Olympia slippers - I would probably actually start eating my vegetables if it meant I could own a pair of these adorable pumps from Charlotte Olympia. These could be paired with so many outfit combinations, day or night.  I daren’t do more than drool over them, but a girl can dream right?

Retro Slush Maker - If my boyfriend had let me, I would happily have gone and purchased this slush maker by now. What’s more refreshing in Summer than a nice cool slush? Think of the fun you could have! And the flavour combinations! And the red chrome matches my toaster and kettle. It’s a match made in heaven. 

Oreo Peanut Butter - I may not have tasted these, but I don’t need to. Oreo? Peanut Butter? What’s not to love? I will be eying my local supermarkets until they are in my stomach!


What's on your wish list this Summer?
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Sunday, 2 August 2015

July Favourites

July has come and gone already, with many people already citing how many days it is until Christmas(!). I decided to take a look back at my favourite things this month!

Maybelline Colour Tattoo 24hr Cream Gel Eyeshadow

A recent boots splurge led me to pick up three of the most lovely shades from Maybelline in their Colour Tattoo 24hr Cream Eyeshadows in (from L-R) pink gold, metallic pomegranate and on and on bronze. I'm not sure how much the photos do the colours justice, but they are a richly pigmented cream formula, blending beautifully across the lid. I've worn them all individually across numerous events such as a wedding reception, dinner out and even just a shopping trip, so you can really incorporate them into any occasion. And at only £4.99, it's a good excuse to pick up a couple of shades!

I Let You Go - Claire Mackintosh


I've always been into books, but for the last year I've been reading consistently, constantly carrying my iPad round in my handbag. One of my most recent favourites has been psychological thriller, I Let You Go. Similar to Gone Girl and The Girl on the Train, it was one of those books where for the first 100 or so pages, I wasn't really convinced by it. But then the twists and turns began and things began to slot into place and I couldn't put it down! Luckily I had a nice seven hour journey from Scotland to devour it in and I found myself crying out at parts to my boyfriend (who was doing the driving, poor thing). The writing is excellent for a debut author and really engaging. I don't want to spoil anything so shall leave you with the book's blurb:

It all happened so quickly. She couldn't have prevented it. Could she? In a split second, Jenna Gray's world descends into a nightmare. Her only hope of moving on is to walk away from everything she knows to start afresh. Desperate to escape, Jenna moves to a remote cottage on the Welsh coast, but she is haunted by her fears, her grief and her memories of a cruel November night that changed her life forever. Slowly, Jenna begins to glimpse the potential for happiness in her future. But her past is about to catch up with her, and the consequences will be devastating...

Dungarees - Topshop



I'm sure that everyone must own some of these by now as they seem to have really come back into people's wardrobes this summer. It was a purchase I never thought I would actually make (as much I pined over them from afar) but one day, feeling brave, I marched into the Topshop changing rooms and was pleased to find they didn't actually look too bad! I've been wearing these with a plain white t-shirt underneath and sandals or converse though they are versatile enough to really make your own.

The Book of Mormon

As part of our London trip for my boyfriend's birthday, we booked tickets to see The Book of Mormon which I knew would be a perfect trip as it was created by the writers of South Park which my boyfriend loves. Everywhere that promotes it goes on about how crude it is, but we didn't find it too bad. Sure there's plenty of bad language, but nothing happens which horrified us. Anyway, I've never really seen any comical musicals in London, so this was really different for me personally. It was very enjoyable and plenty of laughs were had, with a very talented cast. Unlike the likes of Wicked and The Lion King which are a lot more theatrical, I wouldn't want to see it again, purely because you wouldn't find the jokes as funny second time around but was really great to see something new in the West End!

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Thursday, 30 July 2015

REVIEW: The Ivy Chelsea Garden


As it was my boyfriend's Birthday, we decided to head to London for the day to celebrate. After some shopping (obviously!), we made our way to Chelsea for some dinner.

I'd never been to that area of London before and all I really knew of it was what I'd briefly seen through snippets of a certain reality show. It's certainly a grand, gorgeous place, with tall white houses which I was dying to know what they looked like inside.

I'd booked the Ivy Chelsea Garden months in advance after seeing a few bloggers talking about it and it was everything I could have hoped. Inside the restaurant was stunning itself, but then we were led outside to the garden which was the real gem. I had specially asked beforehand to be seated outside and was so glad I had done so. Tables and sofas were spaced well apart around a fountain in the garden and greenery surrounded us from all angles, winding up and above our heads. We were kept warm with heaters and there was a large basket of blankets for you to snuggle under just in case. I love to eat outside, but the weather in England doesn't often allow me that pleasure so this was absolutely perfect.


Now onto the food! We skipped starters and headed straight for the mains. The menu was plentiful with a great range to choose from. My boyfriend ordered the rack of lamb which was gorgeous and tender while as usual, I went for the steak which came with egg and chips. It wasn't my favourite steak but it was more the seasoning that wasn't to my liking!



The best part of the meal however had to be dessert! Being a major chocoholic, it didn't take me long to pick the chocolate bombe. As the menu reads: Melting chocolate bombe with milk foam, vanilla ice cream and honeycomb centre with hot salted caramel sauce. I was in heaven! So many of my favourite things in one dish. It wasn't cheap for a dessert, but totally worth it. When the waitress came over with it, I was a little confused as to why she started pouring the caramel sauce for me, but then it made sense as the top half of chocolate began to melt to reveal the ice cream and honeycomb inside. Naturally, I whipped out my phone! Words couldn't possibly describe the taste for you, but the mixture of textures: warm, cold, soft, crunchy and sweet truly made this dish one of the best desserts I have ever eaten. When I was finished (holding myself back from licking round the bowl in front of all the Chelsea socialites),  I couldn't help but feel disappointed the experience was over!



Overall, our experience at The Ivy Chelsea Garden was really enjoyable. We couldn't fault the staff who were lovely and attentive and the restaurant itself was stunning. I would definitely recommend anyone to head there if your spending time in London, it's well worth it!


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Welcome!

Hello, I'm Emily & welcome to my tiny little slither of the internet. I have decided to start this blog because quite honestly, I miss writing! Like many others, it has always been my favourite thing to do and my every day life unfortunately no longer offers me any reason to have to write, like when I had a lot of free time or was at School and University. Even if only my friends and family read this, I feel happy just being able to have somewhere where I can ramble. I plan on posting on a variety of topics such as baking, beauty, books, hauls, interiors and anything else I feel the urge to. 

I'm quite new at this and learning, but come along for the ride and enjoy my musings and more! 

Emily x
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