30.8.15

Life Lately


1. Evening drives.  I just had to capture this moment. Look how lovely the sky is?! I wish I had chance to stop and take a proper photograph, but this had to do for now.

2. Reading my favourite blogs. I had a bit of spare time on Friday, so that consisted of reading some of my favourite blogs. This beauties blog is Josie's, she's one of my favourites to read at the moment (and has been for a long time!). She also sells awesome homemade cards, check them out!

3. Listening to records. Neck deep released their second album recently, so I had to add it to my record collection! I don't know what it is, but theirs something much better about listening to an album on a record player than listening to it on your iPod, laptop etc.

4. Drinking beer.  Coventry had their own little Oktoberfest this weekend, so it would of been silly not to pop along for a beer (or two). I loved these little half pint glasses - wish I could of took it home with me!

5. Meditation. I've been trying to fit in a teeny bit more meditation into my daily routines, and my mind is thanking me for it. This book is awesome - definitely the best thing I've invested in!

6. Berry picking. Although it was a rainy day, me and a friend decided to troupse around our local park and go berry picking. Unforunately, there wasn't a lot of berries there, but I managed to grab a few! I found it very therapuetic, and was still nice to get out the house. Maybe I'll make a pie out of them!
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28.8.15

REVIEW: A product that boosts my self-confidence

Dermatique recuperating cream

Dermatique recuperating cream

I am aware that this is going to sound really petty and silly, but it's just how I feel; and blogs are all about being honest, right? I hate getting my legs out, for the pure reason that whenever I shave, I have hideous red bumps that cover my legs, and they just never seem to be smooth. Not to mention shaving makes my legs itch like hell. It makes me want to always wear jeans, leggings or tights. Even when it's scorching hot outside.

So, when I got asked to review Dermatique's recuperating cream, I jumped at the chance. The cream claims to 'deeply moisturise the skin, by helping to repair the skin’s protective moisture barrier to prevent dryness from returning in the future'. The cream also 'provides immediate relief from itching and becomes rapidly absorbed'. Just reading these two statements made me so excited to put this on my legs, I had high hopes.

From the first application, my skin felt solf, moisurtised and immediately less itchy. I literally can't believe how less red my legs were! I don't know how, but they just felt less irritated and so smooth. For the first time in about 10 years, I feel comfortable with getting my legs out. I'm so unbelieveably happy. Mad how the small things help, eh?
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21.8.15

How to improve your self-confidence




1. Excercise
Even if it's just a little bit. Perhaps go for a quick run around the block, do a yoga session, do a youtube workout video, or even a walk around your local park. Anything, it really does help increase your endorphins!

2. Write
Write in a journal/diary, write a blog post, or write an email or letter to an old friend. I find writing really helps me, as it completely occupies my mind and gets rid of any negative thoughts I might be having.

3. Read
Read a new book, read a blog, or even re-read an old book!  I find reading occupies my mind aswell, it makes me get lost into a new little world. I even find reading factual books makes me feel more content, as I feel like I've learnt something.

4. Clean
This is probably the only one you'll own moan at, but trust me, it really does help. Whether it's cleaning your whole house, just sticking a wash on, emptying the dishwasher or de-cluttering your room.  It'll all make you feel much better after you've completed it (though, a little more physically tired!).

5. Compliment someone
Compliment your family, friends, other half or even a random stranger on the street. Wether it's a physical compliment, or a personality compliment, that person will feel 10 times better about them selves. And you know what? So will you! Knowing that someone else is happy, and that your actions has made them happy, makes you feel better about yourself too.

6. Go a whole hour without a phone/laptop/tablet/tv
I know in this day and age, it's very hard to go without any of these above items. But if you just turn them up for a hour a day, it'll make you appreciate life more. You'll converse with your family/friends more, you'll educate yourself with books, you'll observe your surroundings, and you'll even get some 'me time' that you've wanted!

7. Listen to music
I find just sticking spotify on, and listening to the pre-created playlists, really puts a smile on my face. You can literally get a playlist for any mood you're in; sad, happy, excited, chilled, tired. Sticking on a chilled playlist when I'm feeling a little anxious, really helps calm me down.

What do you do, to make you happy?
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18.8.15

Accepting that your mental illness, is as valid as any other illness



For the past few weeks or so, I haven't been very well at all. I've been off work for nearly a month now, and I constantly feel guilty for it. Every day I wake up and feel that horrible feeling in your stomach that you get, when you've done something wrong that you should feel guilty for. After nearly a month of feeling this way, I had a sudden thought. Why should I feel so guilty, for having a depression relapse? When in matter of fact; if I had a cold, a stomach bug or any other form of illness, I would not feel guilty in the slightest, as I'm ill and need time off to look after myself. I don't even know why I feel so guilty, I guess its because I haven't got anything physically wrong with me, to stop me from going to work. Thankfully, my manager is so supportive, I couldn't ask for anyone better.

I've realised, that for so many years, I had to make up excuses to miss time off school, college and uni; such as 'I've got a migraine' or 'I've got a stomach bug', because I simply couldn't bring myself to say 'I'm depressed, I feel low' as I didn't think it's a valid excuse, and people would just laugh if I told them how I was really feeling. Thinking about it now, it annoys me. It annoys me that there's such a stigma around depression, to the point where people can't simply admit that they're ill, and struggle through daily life.

I've decided to take some more time off, and really look after myself, in hope that I'll feel better. I'm on new medication now, so hopefully that will help. I'm going to try and eat better, and get at least 30 minutes excercise each day. And you know what? I'm not going to feel guilty for my time off. Because I am sick, and wether it's mentally or physically, it should all be treated the same.
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17.8.15

7 things to do everyday to make you happier




1. Excercise
Even if it's just a little bit. Perhaps go for a quick run around the block, do a yoga session, do a youtube workout video, or even a walk around your local park. Anything, it really does help increase your endorphins!

2. Write
Write in a journal/diary, write a blog post, or write an email or letter to an old friend. I find writing really helps me, as it completely occupies my mind and gets rid of any negative thoughts I might be having.

3. Read
Read a new book, read a blog, or even re-read an old book!  I find reading occupies my mind aswell, it makes me get lost into a new little world. I even find reading factual books makes me feel more content, as I feel like I've learnt something.

4. Clean
This is probably the only one you'll own moan at, but trust me, it really does help. Whether it's cleaning your whole house, just sticking a wash on, emptying the dishwasher or de-cluttering your room.  It'll all make you feel much better after you've completed it (though, a little more physically tired!).

5. Compliment someone
Compliment your family, friends, other half or even a random stranger on the street. Wether it's a physical compliment, or a personality compliment, that person will feel 10 times better about them selves. And you know what? So will you! Knowing that someone else is happy, and that your actions has made them happy, makes you feel better about yourself too.

6. Go a whole hour without a phone/laptop/tablet/tv
I know in this day and age, it's very hard to go without any of these above items. But if you just turn them up for a hour a day, it'll make you appreciate life more. You'll converse with your family/friends more, you'll educate yourself with books, you'll observe your surroundings, and you'll even get some 'me time' that you've wanted!

7. Listen to music
I find just sticking spotify on, and listening to the pre-created playlists, really puts a smile on my face. You can literally get a playlist for any mood you're in; sad, happy, excited, chilled, tired. Sticking on a chilled playlist when I'm feeling a little anxious, really helps calm me down.

What do you do, to make you happy?
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12.8.15

Things nobody ever tells you about depression


Things nobody ever tells you about depression

Contrary to belief, depression is not just about being sad. Tonnes and tonnes of people think that the only emotion in depression is sadness and feeling low, when it's actually so much more than that. Not only do you feel sad; but you feel helpless, guilty and numb. And that's just a handful of negative emotions that you feel. Another thing that people don't tell you, is that depression is infact physically painful. I occasionally get a stabbing pain in my chest, headaches, or I even ache all over when I'm feeling really down.  Nobody tells you that depression is actually terrifying. It's that scary, that it can make you feel so alone and want to hurt yoursef, or even not be around anymore. It really does become difficult to see a future. It often seems like there is no way out of depression, I mean sometimes I can't see the next hour, let alone the next day. It can sometimes be so difficult to see a way out of the illness, but you need to keep faith because you will get better - it is possible. I find my negative thoughts daunting, especially as there's no symptomatic relief. Nobody tells you this. It's not like when you've hurt yourself, or have a sore tummy. With that, you can just take some paracetamol. It's difficult to just switch off the emotions or stop the negative thoughts.

People don't realise how exhausting having depression is. I guess it's hard to imagine having no energy. Not even enough energy to get out of bed or to brush your teeth. Depression also messes up your sleeping pattern,big time. I often find myself not being able to sleep at night and being exhausted throughout the day, having to rely on several cups of coffee to make sure I can function. Even if I somehow do get a good night's sleep I still feel tired all the time. Depression also causes your thoughts to become completely irrational, and you start believing them. You believe that you are a bad person, that people don't like you, and that it's your fault that something bad has happened. But, on the good days (perhaps the next day, even) you will realise that none of these thoughts are true. The smallest of tasks become overwhelming, like washing your hair, cooking a meal or tidying your room feel like the biggest things in the world - all you want to do is crawl back into bed and never come out again. But when you do complete small tasks it is a massive achievement, and that's okay. One of the main stigmas I have noticed about depression, is that you have to be down all the time. This is far from the truth. People with depression have good days, and on those good days they can even feel extremely happy. I often find that depressed individuals also experience happiness much more intensely and appreciate happy times so much more - and I think that's really special.

Though, please please remember, depression does not have to take over you. You don't have to become your depression, you are still you, your own person. Remember that it's not a part of your personality, it is just an illness that you're suffering with.
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10.8.15

Creating me time for myself..



I've had time to think recently (I know, can be dangerous!), and I've realised I need to create some 'me time'. I've been feeling a little run-down lately, a bit stressed and down in the dumps, and thought perhaps it's because when I'm busy with work,friends and family, I never make time for myself. I thought I'd write a post, on things I enjoy and want to start doing, so when 'me time' comes, I have a list to refer back to.

Scrapbooking
I used to scrapbook a fair bit when I was younger, and I'd love to get back into it now. I've saved a fair few tickets over the years, and some souveniers etc from my trip to France, so perhaps I should start looking for a book to glue n' stick all of these memories in! I guess it's any excuse to get myself over to Hobbycraft, I absolutely adore that store!

Netflix
Everyone loves a good ol' Netflix binge? Right?  I've got so many series to catch up on! PLL, True Detective, OITNB, Prison Break, the list goes on..  I'm determined to at least set one night a week for myself to watch an episode or two of something I really enjoy. It'll definitely keep a smile on my face.

Exercising
Once my toes fully healed, I'm determined to get back on that running machine. I haven't ran, or done any form of excericse in a while, and I can definitely feel it. I need to lose them extra pounds before my Mom's wedding! I'd also like to try yoga- so if you can give me your thoughts on that I'd love to hear!

Pamper Time
I need to set aside a whole night for a pamper night. Face masks, nail painting, hair mask, cucumber on the eyes, eyebrow plucking, the lot. Girls, you know the score. I might even throw in a chick flick and pop some popcorn on!


What do you do in your 'me time'?
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7.8.15

A getaway to the South of France




I've recently just got back from a lovely long weekend in the south of France. I've been feeling a bit 'meh' recently, and needed some sun. So, my lovely mother thought it'd be a great opportunity for us both to have a holiday together! Our hotel was based in Nice, but we also visited Antibes, Cannes and Monaco.

Nice
If you're looking for a city break, I highly recommend Nice. Even though it does have a beach (a pebbly one that is), it's not the nicest or most comfortable beach there is. Nice has such a lovely feel to it. There are several museums to visit and with trams running through the centre, everything is so accessible. One of my most favourite parts of Nice, was being able to have a croissant every morning and watch the busy city go by. I also loved Nice of an evening, with a variety of entertainment of offer, just like Covent Garden in London!



Antibes
Next, we visited the quiet town of Antibes. I'd 100% come back here if I wanted a quiet, luxurious holiday. There's literally everything to offer; a beach, restaurants, shops, harbour, bars. We spent most of the day by the harbour and on the beach. Again, the beach that we visited was very pebbly but there is another beach further down which consists of sand, if you'd prefer! We then had a ponder around the cute town, and grabbed an ice cream before having a drink in the Australian Bar, which looks over the port. I definitely want to come back here again.





Cannes
Even though we only spent a few hours here, it's easily one of the most beautiful towns I've visited. No wonder they host the film festival here! It was so nice to finally lie on some sand, before swimming in the clear sea.  We only got to wonder around the town for a little bit, so I would love to go back again and explore more.



Monaco
Finally, we visited Monaco. It's only a short train journey from Nice, so it's a must if you visit Nice! We visited the Prince's palace, looked around the harbour, before venturing into Monte Carlo. Monte Carlo really is gorgeous, and is great for people watching (as they're all in fancy suits or dresses and heels!). I'd love to be able to go into the casino, maybe one day eh!







Have you ever visited the South of France? I'd love to hear all about it!
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5.8.15

24 things that make me happy




I've been feeling a bit down lately, and thought I'd use my blog to remind myself what makes me happy, in hope that I can eventually do these things to cheer myself up! I know it's a random number, but I just let it flow, and it naturally just stopped at 24. So, here you go, 24 things that make me happy:

1. A good book
2. A hot bath
3. The Sims 4
4. A cup of coffee
5. Fresh bedding
6. Newly painted nails
7. Facetime conversations with my friends
8. Spending all day in my jammies
10. Maps. I don't know why. Just. Maps.
11. Colouring books
12. Fruit Juice
13. Flowers
14. Sweet potatoes
15. Netflix
16. Being engrossed in a new iPad game (Tsum Tsum at the moment, move over Candy Crush!)
17. Train journeys
18. Visiting my family in Essex & Glasgow, as it's very rare
19. Countryside walks
20. Swimming
21. Dancing around the room to my record player
21. Having a good clear out & cleaning
22. Cuddles
23. A good magazine
24. Candles

What makes you happy?

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3.8.15

My 4 favourite apps for stress relief and relaxation






1. Balanced (price: free)
This app is hands down my favourite app at the moment. I adore how it indirectly makes you realise what you need to do to make you happier. There are lots of sections such as appreciation, fitness, confidence, etc they contain things like set a reminder to spend time with family, meditate, go for a walk, write a blog post, unclutter my life etc! I also love how you can then swipe across to mark them as ‘done’ once you complete them.

2. Disney Tsum Tsum (price: free)
I know this is a random app, but for some reason this game has got me through some sad times recently, I guess because I get so engrossed! (Same goes for hayday...).This is quite an addictive game too, perfecto to waste time when you’re supposed to be something important..

 3. Word Search puzzles (price: free)
I haven idea why, but I absolutely love doing word searches at the moment (call me an old lady!). There’s something really relaxing about them I think. I'm totally addicted to this app at the moment as there's so many different topics to complete!

 4. Colorfy (price: free)
So you have probably seen those colouring books going around, you know the ones for adults. I featured one on my blog a little while ago (right here infact). I've just recently found the app version and it’s probably the coolest thing I've discovered in a long time. I love that you just tap to colour in and there's a selection of colours. I also like how there’s a undo button, just in case you go wrong! I've spent way too long playing with this, it’s so therapeutic!


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