Hey my lovelies!

I hope you are having a lovely start to autumn. At this cosy time of year I like nothing better than curling up with a great film on the tele-box (popcorn and hot chocolate of course compulsory!) I wanted to write about some of my favourite iconic female movie characters and what their roles mean to me. Why not snuggle down infront of a stunning Panasonic 4K TV this Autumn and enjoy some favourite classic movies?

Hermione Granger – Harry Potter

Of course, as a British gal who grew up surrounded by Harry Potter madness how could Hermione not be number 1 on my list? She is such an inspirational character for young girls (and young at heart girls!!) who love the Harry Potter world and everything about it. Although Harry is the main hero, Hermione is responsible for so many of their triumphs and her intelligence, bravery and strength really makes the stories what they are. I think it’s so important for young girls to have a character like her to look up to. Fictional or not, Hermione will always be someone who I look up to and aspire to be more like.

Moana

I must admit I was as pleased as the next person when this new Disney-Pixar delight graced our screens last year. Moana, as a movie, is just a joy and the animation, songs and characters make it a family classic already. However, the reason I love Moana as a character has nothing to do with her singing. I actually found myself quite moved by this movie, mainly because of her true grit and determination to follow her dreams and save those who she loves. She literally never gives up. Even when she does give up it’s for about 5 minutes and then she finds the strength within to carry on! She doesn’t need a prince, or even a love interest at all, to save her; she’s a strong, independent girl who shows everyone what she can do. Love it!

Elle Woods – Legally Blonde

An old favourite; I love Elle’s character in both the Legally Blonde movie and the West End musical! Yes, okay she starts off pretty shallow and flaky and she chases boy all the way to law school just to make him ‘love her again’ but come on that in itself takes a huge amount of resilience and determination! Then – once there she finds she can hold her own with the lawyer big boys and she ends up realising how clever and capable she is, and forgets about the boy all together! Go Elle!

Elastagirl – The Incredibles

I knew I had to have a super-hero in this list but perhaps not the most obvious choice. The reason I’ve picked Elastagirl over your standard Wonder Woman/ Cat Woman etc is because she is downright awesome! In the movie, she’s given up saving the world to raise her kids and faces the same family problems that we all go. Then, when her husband is in trouble, she re-discovers her super powers, kicks ass and goes to save him and, in the process, the world! With the help of her epic kids as well. Awesome.

Katherine Johnson – Hidden Figures

When I saw this movie I could not believe how long the secret that several black women had such a key role in the American space race had been kept. The character of Katherine Johnson, who of course is a real person, is super inspiring. Not only is incredibly smart and runs rings around the so called ‘experts’ at NASA but she also conducts herself with amazing integrity in the face of ill-treatment, disrespect and racism at work.  In the face of adversity she showed true courage and strength and deserves recognition as the legend that she is and what she contributed to history.

 

Let me know who your favourite TV and film characters are? I love a good chit-chat about favourite movies. Whatever you are watching I hope you have a cosy and wonderful start to Autumn.

 

**This post is a brand collaboration however the content and opinions are my own**

If you’ve decided that it’s time to tone up as you’ve never toned up before, the last thing you want is to waste your time on diet and exercise regimes that really don’t work. If you want to find out a few things that will work and have worked for me, read on…

Eating Enough

A lot of ladies think that, in order to tone up, they need to go on the latest fad diet or cut their consumption to a minimum, this simply isn’t true! It’s perfectly possible to eat little, be skinny and not toned, and actually eating less than your body needs to support itself will actually cause your metabolism to slow down. To burn fat and get into better shape, you need your metabolism firing on all cylinders, and that means eating regular healthy meals, not starving yourself. Fad diets just don't work!

Practice Yoga

A lot of people think that yoga is a very gentle form of exercise; a practice of stretching which might make you feel good, but doesn’t exactly do much to build muscle and tone the body. Have they ever seen a dedicated yogi? Sure, yoga is all about stretching the various muscles in the body, but you know what? It can be quite a workout, and when practised regularly it will almost certainly help you to tone up and build the kind of long, lean muscle that makes you look fabulous. So why not spice up your body with some yoga workout? You’ll be amazed by the results you can get in such a short time. I always find my body is aching in all the right places after a yoga class.

Lift Some Weights

Lifting weights scares many women. They think that, after a few weeks down the gym they’ll emerge looking like a female version on Arnold Schwarzenegger! This is really not the case. Lifting weights will help you tone up faster than almost anything else, and unless you’re doing something silly like taking steroids or other substances, there is literally no chance that you will ‘bulk up’ in the same way bodybuilding males do. What’s more, when you’re lifting regularly, your metabolism will be stoked, you’ll burn more calories, drop fat, and best of all you’ll be able to eat more (healthy) food. What’s not to like?

Kettlebell Training

Another thing that can very quickly help you to lose fat, build muscle and tone up is the humble kettlebell. This fabulous piece of equipment, which looks (and feels) a bit like a cannonball with a handle, can help you to burn well over 1,200 calories per hour, and give you a full body workout in just 15-20 minutes. If you want to be in peak condition, you need kettlebells in your life.

Cut Out Bloating Foods

One thing that can prevent you from achieving that lean, toned silhouette you’re after is bloating. As well as working to increase your fitness, you should try to eliminate as many of the causes of bloating from your diet as you can. Some things which commonly cause bloating include salt, beans, onions and fizzy drinks. If you can remove your triggers, you’ll instantly look a bit slimmer, and you’ll definitely feel a whole lot better too.

Other than trying some or all of the above, to be the most toned you’ve ever been, all you need is patience and determination.
It doesn't come easy, but making small changes and sticking to them can make big changes to your body!

What do you find work's best for you?


**This post is a brand collaboration**

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

 

 

Don’t you just love getting your hair done?! I honestly enjoy going to the hairdressers so much. I love the feeling of being pampered, having my hair washed and styled and, even though I only ever have a trim, I love how my hair feels when it’s freshly cut. I always think it makes you feel so much better.

So, when I was asked to visit new Rush hair salon in the beautiful Wimbledon Village for a haircut I was only too happy to attend. Not only for the above reasons but also because I generally love Rush salons and I have always found them to give an excellent service. In fact, my local Rush salon in Greenwich was actually responsible for saving me from a hair colour PURPLE DISASTER 5 days before my wedding day (no, I’m not making this up), but that’s a story for another day.

On this occasion I was booked in for a haircut and blowdry at Rush Wimbledon Village. The salon itself is situated in the rather lovely and upmarket area of Wimbledon Village; a short walk from the main town and train station at Wimbledon. I made a morning of it and as it was a nice day spent an hour window shopping in the cute gifty shops and had a coffee in one of the quaint independent cafes. Rush is located perfectly in the heart of the village.

When it was time for my appointment I was greeted at reception and showed to my seat quickly. The salon inside is really stylish and has definitely got that ‘new’ feel. I’m obsessed with the stunning crystal chandelier they’ve got! Once seated I was delighted to be presented with magazines and my choice of drink (apple juice), but not only that – the drink came accompanied by popcorn, biscuits and Lindor chocolates! Amazing! It was a fabulous touch which will really make customers feel extra special.

My stylist Zoe came over to see me quickly and chatted to me about what I wanted to do with my hair and how much would need to come off the ends. Although I like to keep my hair long, I also love getting rid of all the dead ends so that my hair looks fresh and healthy. Zoe was very knowledgeable and made me feel comfortable in the new salon straight away.

So, after feeling super well looked after and chatting through how I wanted my hair cut and blow dried with Zoe I was taken through to have my hair washed. My favourite part! Is there anything more relaxing in the world?! Well, the relaxation is taken to the next level at Rush, with the hair wash room being dark with twinkly lights, relaxing music and reclining chairs that massage you! Bliss. Zoe talked me through the shampoo options and asked me what type of products I like to use. She explained she would be using Shu Umeura products on my hair because they use rich natural oils to moisturise and give life back to the hair – something my locks were in desperate need of! Zoe also explained the different treatment options which I could add as an extra to my hair cut. I chose a deep moisturising and repairing treatment.

After the hair wash it was time for my cut. I was only having a simple style – a few inches off the ends and some graduated layers around my face (my usual) but Zoe took her time and did an excellent job. I was so impressed with how she dried my hair too. I asked for it with a natural curl and she blow-dried my hair in sections, each with a loose, bouncy curl and I have to say it looked amazing! The curls even held for the next day or too and, due to the treatment she used, that ‘shiny, new hair’ feeling stayed with me for several washes afterwards. I left feeling a million dollars, so much so I even took some selfies of my hair when I got home!

Overall, I loved my experience at the salon and I would highly recommend it. I was very impressed with the salon itself, the friendliness of the staff and the excellent service I received, as I have been with all Rush salons I have visited before. I had a great time chatting to Zoe who was so friendly and an amazing hair dresser. Everything from the décor of the interior to the professionalism of the staff made for a first class salon experience.

You can visit the salon’s website for more information and to book here.

***I visited this salon for reviewing purposes but the opinions are my own***

Where is your favourite hairdresser? Have you got a regular or do you change it up?

April has been a full-on month for me! It started well; the easter holidays and a lovely trip to Montenegro! But the last few weeks have been MAD and I’ve been a bit stressed and slacking on my blog and videos. Here’s a look at what we got up to this month – in pictures!

I received my gorgeous GLITZBOX delivery and this little beauty!

First day in Montenegro.

Sun worshipper.

Kotor Old Town.

Got my hair done at Rush Wimbledon Village.

Filmed making these gorgeous chocolate Cornflake cakes!

Had an amazing time visiting family in the new forest – such a pretty place

Finished off the month instyle with a lovely trio to the #BWBLaunch event in town!

What did April hold for you?