I’m back!

I know I’ve been a bit absent lately; I’ve had A LOT of work stuff going on recently which is not something that I really talk about in my blog, which I think leads a lot of people to think this is my full time career! I wish it was, but sadly, I also have a full time job. One that has been extremely stressful lately and has taken over most aspects of my life! I’ve really missed blogging.

Anyway, I’m out of the woods and back on my A game! Luckily, I have lots of things to write about and fill you in on! Last weekend was mine and Paul’s first wedding anniversary weekend and we had the most INCREDIBLE time I’ve been so excited to share it! I can’t believe it’s been a year it’s gone so fast!

First up, year one is paper and Paul took it upon himself (cutie that he is) to organise a surprise weekend for me seeing as I was so bogged down with work. Paper being the theme – he prepared 5 paper envelopes for me to open at different times over the weekend, each containing a different surprise activity! Such a cute idea I loved it.

On Saturday (the day before our actual anniversary) when at 9am I was instructed to get up, dressed (smart/casual and comfy!) and pack an overnight bag! Eeeeeek! The first envelope contained lunch reservations at The Urban Meadow Café & Bar, Bayswater; a gorgeous West London restaurant overlooking Hyde Park. I was so impressed with the food there and we pigged out on a three course meal. The puddings in particular were spectacular – check out the fruit crumble I had!

The second envelope contained our booking at La Suite West Hyde Park, our hotel for the evening! It was at this point I realised we were staying in central London for the night so I was super excited trying to guess what we would be doing that evening! We went to check in to the boutique hotel which was absolutely beautiful, all marble bathroom, pure white sheets and a HUGE bed! What is it about nice hotels always having the comfiest beds in the world?! Seriously, it was like lying on a marshmallow.

We had a couple of hours to ‘kill’ before the next envelope, but in that part of London it’s never really killing time as there is so much to do! We wandered around Hype Park for a bit, and despite the dismal forecast the rain held off for us and it was quite warm (more on that later!!). We walked up to Portobello Road market, one of my favourite parts of the city, and enjoyed listening to live music and people watching, perfectly poised in the window of the Electric Diner Notting Hill sipping delicious gin cocktails. We had so much fun and what with me being so busy and stressed out lately it was so so nice to spend some quality time together without distractions.

At 5pm it was back to the hotel and the third envelope contained dinner reservations at the hotel restaurant; a raw and vegan only restaurant! Paul had pre booked the set menu and it was really interesting to try some vegan food as it’s not something I’ve had much experience with in the past! I know he won’t mind me saying (as he agreed!!) that it wasn’t my favourite food in the world – I think it’s safe to say we are both hard-core carnivores! But it was great to do something different. Before I knew it we were in a taxi and it was time for the fourth envelope as we made our way across town.

I was so excited to find out that the evening surprise was tickets to On The Town at the Open Air Theatre in Regents Park! I had a sneaky suspicion it might be the theatre (Paul was adamant the taxi picked us up at 7pm on the dot!) but I never thought he would have remembered that I’d said ages ago that I’d like to see it! I love open air theatre, something about being outside makes it magical, plus the fact that On The Town stars Danny Mac; my Strictly Come Dancing fave!! The theatre itself was amazing, all done up with twinkly fairy lights and an outdoor bar. We made our way to our excellent seats with a bottle of red wine ready for the show to start, and promptly it began to pour with torrential rain! Luckily, Paul had been prepared and asked me to bring a raincoat, even more luckily the theatre were clearly used to this – they waited for the rain to pass and about 10 minutes later they towelled down the stage and the show began! We were lucky – if the rain had been persistent I expect it would have been cancelled as there is so much leaping about in the choreography I don’t think it would be safe! But after one short spell of downpour we were in for a warm and pleasant evening.

The production was fantastic! Dancing, singing and acting all brilliant, wonderful costumes, the play was funny and moving with enough of a nod to the traditional ‘cheesy’ aspect of it but also with new contemporary styling thrown in. And with the natural light going from light, to dusk, to dark and being surrounded by nature made it extra magical for me. I would thoroughly recommend it.

After we stayed the night in the stunning La Suite West Paul said we were going home in the morning (our actual anniversary) so we went home and chilled out for a bit before opening the final envelope which was the best of them all!! Tickets to see Little Mix at their Summer Shout Out tour that evening! I literally jumped around the room when he told me I was SO EXCITED! I’ve been wanting to see them for so long.

And they did not disappoint! WOW those girls have sass and such incredible bods! I could really use some of their confidence!  They really put on a show and sang and danced literally non stop every single hit they sang it – finishing with Shout Out To My Ex and everyone was jumping and singing along it was incred! The weather played nice as well we had beautiful late evening sunshine, I felt like I was loving life at a festival! Seriously girls, you killed it.

 

SO after an amazing and exhausting weekend I can’t believe how lucky I am to have such an amazing husband who knows me inside out. Not just with presents but with the everyday things that really matter, I can’t believe how lucky I am to be married to someone like Paul who makes my life complete. Love you x

 

 

So, just to fill you in, it was my graduation on Monday! I finished my course and got my results and everything back in the summer (I’ve already moved on to my post grad) but the official ceremony was saved until last week. Although it may seem late, I quite liked it that way because it gave me something to look forward to!


I graduated from the University of Greenwich with a first class degree in Primary Education. The course, the uni and me had it’s ups and downs but I couldn’t have been prouder sitting in the chapel in my hat and gown with my friends ready to receive our official awards. Getting a degree is no mean feat and everyone who does should be super proud of there acheivements.

It was a lovely, if a little chilly, Autumn day and as graduates of the Uni of Greenwich we are lucky enough to have our ceremony in the Old Royal Naval Chapel. This stunning building has been the backdrop for many films and is extremely iconic, so I was chuffed to have it as the background for my graduation photographs.


Now, the important stuff, what did I wear?? Well, I got in a bit of tizz. It was difficult – I’ve got so many dresses but I wanted something on the formal side for this occasion. Although not too formal. And something that wouldn’t look silly with a mortar board and black gown! Tricky. In the end I decided on my prom dress. Yes you heard me right, my prom dress from when I was 16 years old (I’m now 25) which hasn’t seen the light of day for 9 years! I was really proud that it fitted me after all these years! I think it was just the right mix of formal and casual for the day.


Of course, my parents came up to watch me graduate. They are very proud and I couldn’t havnt done it without them. They have supported me throughout my entire education and have always been there. I owe them a lot. My glamourous Gran also made the trip. It meant so much to me that she could be there as she’s a huge inspiration to me. My brother, uncle, Pauls mum and dad and of course Paul himself were all there watching the ceremony from a screen cheering me on. It’s lovely to feel loved.


I’m so pleased to graduate and I have really enjoyed my time at the University of Greenwich, made wonderful friends and loved living in this exciting part of London. I can’t wait to see what the next chapter of my journey will bring!

Have you graduated recently or is it something you are looking forward to in the future?

I’m still buzzing from my amazing hen party over the weekend! You can read about what we got up to here, but I wanted to write a post about my outfit and makeup for the day, even if it’s only to remind myself in years to come how much effort I put in! The theme of the party was festival/boho which is just so me and I spent a long time searching for the perfect outfit, hairstyle and makeup so I could feel and look my best on the day.

Outfit

What could be more boho-hippie-festival that the trusty high waisted shorts/crop top/flower crown combo?! I was in love with my outfit and I felt great in it all day.  I wore this with simple flip flops as the weather was so lovely.

Crochet Fringe top: Forever 21

High waisted mint shorts: Primark

White crop top: H&M

Rose Quartz necklace: Forever 21

Flower crown: Bijoux (shop in Portugal)

Makeup

As it was such a hot day and my party mainly consisted of day time activities I did go for a natural look with a pinky/gold eye shadow and a winged black liner to give it a boho edge. I vamped it up for the evening with a brighter lipstick but this makeup look was great and lasted all day.

Primer: Bare Minerals Prime Time, Original.

Foundation: Bare Minerals Original mineral foundation, Fairly Medium.

I used a bit more than usual and just buffed it within an inch of it’s life to ensure maximum wear.

Bronzer: Bare Minerals, Warmth.

Have finally mastered contouring with this! Tiny, tiny amounts and using the right brush. It took me a while but the perfect brush I’ve found is the Superdrug mini bronzing brush.

Concealer: Bare Minerals Bareskin, Medium.

Powder: Bare Minerals, Mineral Veil.

Highlight/Blush: Laura Mercier compact, Golden Pink.

This is a creamy highlight which I don’t usually use with a mineral foundation but I applied it lightly with a brush on the cheekbones and it looked pretty. 

Eyes:

Laura Mercier eye basic, Flax.

MAC, A Natural Flirt.

MAC, Corduroy.

Laura Mercier, Coffee Ground.

Loreal liquid liner

Lancôme Hypnose Mascara

Lipstick: MAC, Angel.

Hair

I wanted to get the 70’s crimped look for my hair so I plaited it damp the night before and I ended up with the crazy, hippy hair I wanted! Simple!


I completed my boho look with a few Bohemian Jewellery Tattoos; stunningly detailed gold and silver temporary tattoos which we found at a wedding fair believe it or not! I bought several packets so I could do them with my girls on the day and they went down very well! They look amazing for parties click here to visit their website.

xox

It was my hen party on Saturday! Last fling before the ring etc etc!!! I am now officially on the countdown to becoming a Mrs.

Planning a hen party is difficult. There seems to be huge expectations attached to it and the celebrations often involve a whole weekend (sometimes even a week!), sometimes abroad and usually involve quite a lot of money from all those invited. I was adamant that I wanted something simple, nothing tacky and nothing that involved my friends and family having to pay loads of cash up front and, more importantly, involved my bridesmaids having to spend hours chasing up payments and organizing! And nothing cringe – no strippers allowed!

My five bridesmaids with help from my mum did an amazing job of planning and setting up a stunning picnic in Greenwich Park with a ‘festival’ theme (I love my festivals!) and it was absolutely perfect! They went to a lot of trouble and there were a lot of extra touches which I wasn’t expecting like my mum made a flower photo booth for us to use to take our selfies and homemade personalized cupcakes with little pictures of me and Paul on them! So cute.  It was the little details that made it so special for me, instead of a sash or tiara my cousin made me a ‘bride-to-be’ badge to wear, we had bunches of gypsophelia on the table and all the food was homemade. It was perfect for me 🙂

How lucky we were with the weather! In the weeks leading up to it I was terrified that our garden party would be ruined by rain or a freezing wind but thank goodness the UK decided to bust out a heatwave and we were blessed with a balmy 23 degrees!

After a few hours of champagne and cake in the park we engaged in some hilarious ‘school sports day’ games (even more hilarious with a few drinks having been consumed) like the sack race, egg and spoon and the 3-legged race and I managed to lead my team to a convincing victory! We also provided some good entertainment for the other park-goers that day and became a bit of a tourist attraction!!!

In the evening we went out to Shoreditch to ‘Trapeze Bar’ which is a circus themes bar with yummy cocktails for a bit of a dance. As we had been celebrating for most of the afternoon we didn’t last much longer than midnight but it was still enough time to hit the dance floor and get a few drinks in.

The best thing about the day was seeing all my (female) friends and family and the girls that I love in one place all getting on and getting to know each other before my wedding. I feel truly blessed to have such lovely ladies in my life.

xox