Five on Friday

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{A takeaway latte and almond croissant to start off yet another grey January morning. No New Year health kick for me although I have been to the gym twice this week so I refuse to feel guilty about the little treats}

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{These lovely colourful bulbs outside our local florist were a timely reminder that spring IS on its way. If our house wasn’t a building site I would have bought some to brighten up the place}

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{I’m enjoying trying out all the beauty products from my Liberty London advent calendar. So far my favourites are the Kiehls body lotion, the Laura Mercier lipgloss and the Dr Sebagh repair serum}

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{I don’t mind the cold as much as the rain and this week we have had some lovely crisp sunny days. I snapped this picture on a late afternoon walk}

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{My husband and I are going away for the weekend to Amsterdam at the start of next month. It will be the first time that we are both away from the children for more than one night but I am confident that they will have a great time with their grandparents. Lots of shopping, sightseeing and dinners/cocktails à deux are on the agenda}

Hope you all have a great weekend! X

 

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The Beauty Edit: Wave Goodbye to Chapped Hands

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{The Laura Mercier La Petite Patisserie Hand Crème Quartet comes in a long tube – just the right size to fit in a Christmas stocking!}

One of my favourite stocking fillers this Christmas (thank you Santa!) was Laura Mercier’s La Petite Patisserie Hand Crème Quartet. I have dry skin anyway and my hands always look terrible in the winter – chapped and scaly with a texture like sandpaper. The only thing that keeps the dryness at bay is religiously applying cream every time my hands have been in water, but it is so easy to forget. This pack of four 1 oz. tubes of luxurious handcream means that I can keep one in the bathroom, kitchen, bedroom and my handbag. With four delicious fragrances – Almond Coconut Milk, Crème Brulée, Crème de Pistache and Fresh Fig – an added bonus is that your hands are not only velvety soft but also smell good enough to eat. In fact, when I was putting my son to bed last night after applying the Crème Brulée hand cream he said ‘Mummy your hands smell like sweeties!’ High praise indeed!

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{In this picture you can see another Christmas present: my new favorite nail polish, Essie’s Good as Gold}

Christmas has come early!

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December got off to a very good start for me as I padded downstairs this morning to grab my morning coffee and spotted the much coveted Liberty Beauty Advent calendar in our living room! Someone has obviously been reading my blog…

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Even nicer in real life, this lovely advent calendar will definitely make it easier to get out of bed on grey and dreary mornings. Today’s drawer, decorated in pretty Liberty fabric, was hiding a Lavender and Wild Chamomile soap that smells absolutely divine.

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I’ve resisted looking at the contents list that came with the calendar so that each day will be a surprise. And, as there aren’t any chocolates in there, just yummy beauty treats, the kids won’t be wrestling to get their hands on my Advent goodies! Plus it gives me a good excuse to blog every day when a new drawer is opened. So all in all a real winner. A huge thanks to my (not so secret) Santa.

And, of course, Happy December to you all!

Currently Coveting #27: The Liberty Christmas Calendar

Liberty Christmas Calendar

 

With only 36 days to go until Christmas Day, the festive countdown has well and truly begun. In a few days’ time I will have to go up into the loft to hunt down the children’s wooden advent calendar and put it on the mantlepiece, ready to be filled with chocolates on December 1. This year though I rather fancy an advent calendar of my own and, as much as I love chocolate, my sights are set on this beauty calendar from Liberty. With a gorgeous picture of the iconic Regent Street store on the front, inside each Liberty Print decorated box hides a decadent beauty treat, from skincare to scent and everything in-between. If you’ve ever visited Liberty’s Beauty Hall you will know what a fabulous selection of must-have beauty buys there is to choose from.

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Five on Friday

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{The boys went back to school last Tuesday. For one year they are at the same school, before it is time for Cameron to move on to secondary school.}

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{Clemmie didn’t start school until today so she and I went to Sweden for three nights last weekend to see my sister and her kids. We had loads of time at the airport before our flight so I treated her to an Anna from Frozen doll. Traveling with just one child was so easy and we had a great time.}

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{Today was a big day for Clemmie but she loved putting on her uniform and going into school. Some of you may remember that I was less than thrilled about her starting school so young but after several chats with the headteacher I felt reassured that the focus in this first year is very much on play.}

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{Some new beauty buys: A Rodial bee venom serum that I bought on the flight back from Stockholm and I also managed to get my hands on the much-hyped Multi-colour Les Beiges by Chanel. I feel a beauty post coming up soon!}

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{I am a self-confessed knitwear fanatic and these two jumpers from H&M and Hunky Dory are new purchases for the coming season along with a pair of boots, also from H&M. I love the zip detailing on all of them.}

Now that all three children are at school, I hope to have some more time for blogging. I have so many ideas but time has been very scarce over the summer holidays. Thank you to all of you who kept reading and commenting despite the rather patchy updating.

This weekend we’re going to Bristol to visit an old friend of mine. Last time we went it took us over four hours to get there so I’m keeping my fingers crossed that the traffic will be light. Hope you have a fantastic weekend whatever you’re doing. X

Five on Friday

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{Some new beauty purchases – as usual every product ran out at the same time! I love my new nail polish by Essie in Cute as a Button.}

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{Daddy took Clemmie to the golf course this week (and got her dressed – note winter boots and inside-out skirt!). Soon I will be the only non-golfer in the family.}

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{OK, so I don’t really need any more bags but this Carmen Edge clutch by Becksondergaard was too cute to pass up.}

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{Nothing like a bit of me time with a latte and the latest copy of Vogue.}

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{Except maybe packing for my spa day with the girls tomorrow. A whole day of doing nothing but relaxing – I can’t wait!}

Hope you have a fantastic weekend! X

Currently Coveting #25: Marc Jacobs Daisy Dream

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Sometimes it pays to have friends in (literally) high places. I’m desperate to get my hands on the new Daisy Dream perfume from Marc Jacobs (worth getting for the bottle alone, I’m sure you would agree, but I have heard it is similar to the other Daisy fragrances which I love) but at the moment it is exclusive to World Duty Free. Sadly we have no travel plans until August so enter my friend who works for BA and has promised to try and get her hands on a bottle for me next week. Watch this space…

The Beauty Edit: Summer Wishlist

Summer Beauty Collage

 

Summer is finally here and it’s time to ditch the heavy makeup and opt instead for a lighter, more natural look. As much as I love an opulent  smoky eye and decadent red lip, it just doesn’t look right on sunny evenings. Here are some of the beauty products I’m planning to invest in this season:

1 Dior ‘Nail Glow’ – A slightly pink nail polish that enhances the natural colour of your nails to give them a light, healthy sheen.

2. St Tropez Self Tan Luxe Dry Oil – A moisturising non-greasy formula that gives a long lasting natural looking tan.

3. Laura Mercier Body Butter in Almond Coconut Milk – I always associate the smell of coconut with summer and this body butter is the ultimate in luxurious skincare.

4. Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb La Vie En Rose – A lighter version of my favourite fragrance that comes in a bottle “inspired by the iridescent wings of a butterfly”. What’s not to love?

5. Nars Matte Multiple in Anguilla – A non-sparkly version of the cult cheek & lip stick in a selection of vibrant and sun-kissed shades.

6. Clarins Rouge Eclat in Juicy Clementine –  The perfect lipstick for fair-skinned people like myself who want to embrace this summer’s trend for orange lips. Plus the name reminds me of my lovely daughter!

7. Mac Prep + Prime Highlighter – A pen-style highlighter that can be used over or under makeup to add radiance and a sheer wash of colour.

8. Ghd White Eclipse – I know it’s not great for my hair but I use my ghd hair straightener every day. This new version promises to style your hair in a single stroke while actually making it stronger.

 

 

 

The Beauty Edit: Just Add Sunshine

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The arrival of summer here in the UK is always sudden and usually unpredictable, even for the poor weathermen. Last weekend we had glorious sunny weather, culminating in the hottest day so far this year on Monday. It is always wonderful when we get these sudden heatwaves, short as they may be, but I have to admit that the prospect of putting my lily white limbs on display didn’t have me jumping up and down with joy. But a quick trip into town and a rifle through the shelves in John Lewis’ refurbished beauty hall (I was very impressed – lots of new brands to try) and I was ready to transform myself, if not exactly into a bronzed goddess, at least a less ghostly version of myself.

Being a low maintenance girl, I’m all for keeping it simple and not over complicating things with too many products. A good exfoliator is essential – I normally use the Soap & Glory one but this Exfoliating Body Wash from Australian Organics worked just as well. When it comes to the self tanner I prefer a mousse as it’s easier to apply and you can see which areas you have already covered. Fake Bake has been my go-to brand for the last few years as it gives a nice subtle glow rather than a “I just spent a week in Barbados” deep bronze. I first bought a St Tropez tan applicator mitt last summer and now consider it a must-have to ensure an even finish, free of streaks and product build-up.

Add in a nice summery nail polish in ‘No Room for the Blues’ by OPI (pictured here with the Start to Finish all-in-one base coat, top coat and strengthener – a great multi-tasker if there ever was one) and I was ready to face the sunshine which lasted all but four days. Oh well, that’s the British summer for you!

The Beauty Edit: Sleeping Beauty

A Good Night’s Sleep – four little words that are the holy grail for most parents with small children. Personally, I can count on one hand the number of uninterrupted nights’ sleep I have had in the last decade. It is one of the greatest fallacies of parenthood that once your babies sleep through the night, they will carry on doing so until they grow up and leave home. Or at least that hasn’t been my experience. My eldest son finally started sleeping through most nights when he was six, at which point I decided it would be a really good idea to have another baby!

I’m lucky in that, as long as I go to bed before midnight and don’t drink more than two glasses of wine, a lack of shut eye doesn’t bother me too much (unlike my husband who is not, shall we say, at his most sparkling first thing in the morning). The effects the lack of sleep has on my skin is another matter though and I’m constantly on the look out for new products to boost my arsenal against the sleep thieves (a.k.a my children).

And it seems I’m not the only one who is searching for eight hours sleep in a bottle or a  jar. The beauty shelves are bursting with products which promise to help you get to sleep, pamper your skin or even your hair while you sleep and cover the damage caused by sleepless nights. Here are a few that I would like to try:

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1. A relaxing soak in the bath is a nice way to unwind before bedtime. This indulgent Drift Away Milk Soak by Space NK contains ingredients which have a calming effect on busy minds.

2. The Deep Sleep Heavenly Candle by This Works has notes of Lavender and Camomile to soothe your senses.

3. Promising to ensure “a blissful night of slumber” this Deep Relax Balm by Aromatherapy Associates is the most luxurious sleeping pill I’ve ever seen.

4. Squirt This Work’s Deep Sleep Pillow Spray on your pillow and let its soothing scent of Lavender, Vetivert and Wild Camomile send you off to the land of nod.

5. You can actually improve your hair while you sleep with the Thickening Serum from Bumble & Bumble that works overnight to give you thicker, fuller hair.

6.The name alone was enough to draw me in: Dragon’s Blood Night Cream by Rodial promises a smoother, brighter, more even complexion by the time dawn breaks.

7. The Overnight Body Treatment by Sarah Chapman is packed with potent anti-ageing ingredients and relaxing essential oils.

8. If all else fails, hide the dark circles with Laura Mercier’s Secret Concealer and take comfort in the knowledge that at least you look well-rested.

9. Or plump for By Terry’s Hyaluronic Eye Primer which promises to erase sleepless nights by reducing puffiness and lifting fine lines.

All products available at Space NK