Monday, 25 December 2017

You Are Not Alone This Christmas, 2017

To all those people out there who are enjoying Christmas, Merry Christmas.

For some people, Christmas is a hard time, a lonely time or a time when you realise that you need help.

I hope you find here, what you need.

a list of helpline tel numbers


Sunday, 24 December 2017

Last Minute Christmas Gifts With B&M

Ok, it is Christmas Eve, NOW you can panic.

Have you done all your shopping? No? THEN GET YOURSELF TO B&M.

That's what I did.

B&M set me the task of doing my last minute shopping with £20 of gift vouchers and told me not to panic, just get things done.

The truth is, I am not an organised person. See my last post. But I do give great presents.

For my money, I bought the HUGEST box of biscuits for the family.

A great last minute gift to get through all that wrapping, Some alcoholic presents, the COOLEST colour in mug you have ever seen, A CHOCOLATE ORANGE, because, CHRISTMAS. Some pencils and a huge tub of fat balls for the birds, which I forgot to photograph because I am a terrible blogger who forgot to take the pictures.

Want to see the Chocolate orange instead?

You still have a few hours to grab your last minute gifts, (They also have wrapping paper, and batteries, don't forget the batteries) if you have a B&M near you, RUN, don't walk.

B&M will save your christmas, ok?
Take my word for it.


Friday, 22 December 2017

Why You Call It Last-Minute Christmas Shopping, And I Call It...... Christmas Shopping

Ok, so here is the deal, it is 7.50 on a Friday night, the date is December the 22nd and whilst my social media feed is FULL of people talking about last-minute shopping. I am still doing SHOPPING.

Seriously, guys, you are starting to stress me out here. I don't know about you, but my idea of
"last minute" shopping is going to be those golden ten minutes on SUNDAY when I've realised I have forgotten to get something major and have to make a special trip into town.

Anything before then, is JUST CHRISTMAS SHOPPING, in my opinion.

Do I have everything I need to buy? 

Fuck no.

Will I have everything I need to buy before Sunday? 

Lol, NO.

Are at least one of my relatives going to read this post and start to panic that they aren't going to get a present? 

Ha, None of my relatives read my blog anyway.

Will I stress out about it?

Not in the slightest. I have TWO days left, Whilst everyone else has been panic buying shit like they are stockpiling for a Snowpocalypse, I have been gently wafting through my time off of work, having naps, eating food and generally recharging my batteries.

I also purchased from Homesense the most AMAZING cutlery set that you have ever seen. Seriously, it is beautiful. Stainless steel, no plastic handles. If cutlery could be deemed as sexy, this cutlery set would be so sexy that Poundland would objectify it for the BANTS.

Because if the time for giving means I can't even give myself a present, then I don't even want to play anymore.

I LOVE buying presents for other people, so you know what, I am going to take my time and enjoy every second.

That is not last-minute shopping, that is just pacing myself. I refuse to get stressed out and worn out by buying presents. It is meant to be fun, enjoyable, A time to buy presents that have some thought behind them. If I am rushing around like a silly sod then where is the fun in that?

But if you want me on Christmas eve, my apologies, I'mm be the one wrapping gifts until 3am.

Sorry about that.

What do you prefer? Getting present buying out of the way early and being done by the beginning of December or are you more of a "I have until Xmas Eve to buy things" kind of shopper?

Let me know.


Tuesday, 28 November 2017

Remember When I Could Breathe Through My Nose?

Can we just take a second to remember when I could breathe through my nose? Granted, it was yesterday but damn, I miss it. Now, the only thing I can smell is Olbas Oil, sadness and desperation and I’m pretty sure they are all me. (The old lady wee smell isn’t me, I don’t think) 

WHY oh why are colds so shit? Genuinely, you know when we say, “Oh, I’m ok, it’s just a cold”? Why do we do that? Colds are awful. Colds are just our bodies way of wringing out bodily fluids that seem to appear from nowhere. Where the hell does all that snot come from anyway? Is there a vat of it, continuously just bubbling away next to my stomach, waiting patiently until it is needed? Does it just spontaneously appear? Like an evil leprechaun dripping ooze and suspiciously green? 

At the same time, the mucus is only a part of it. Have we talked about the pure misery? Because I feel like SHITTTTTTT. I know it’s “just a cold” I know that soon I will be able to breathe through my nose again. (God, I miss that) but URGHHHHHHHHHH. Currently I am leaving a trail of snotty tissues around my house like some sort of twisted Hansel & Gretel, But can I find a clean tissue when my nose is dripping like a leaky tap? Of course I can’t. That would be too easy. 

Also, a quick side note and I am not saying I have done this, because this would be A STUPID THING TO DO, when you have a snotty tissue dipped in Olbas oil in one hand and you sit on the loo to go to the toilet. DROP THE BLOODY OLBAS SOAKED TISSUE so that you don’t get confused in your cold addled state and wipe your vajayjay with the wrong tissue. Trust me on this, you can thank me later. 

One of the worst bits about a cold is that you feel at your absolute worst, first thing in the morning and last thing at night, you know, when you actually have to get shit done or, I don’t know, try to sleep because you are poorly and want to collapse into bed. The last thing you need at these points when you are feeling ill is to feel like shit on a stick. If I am going to struggle through this cold can I have the worst bit either in the middle of the night when I am asleep, or in the middle of the day when I am feeling like a bad-ass bitch for making it this far. When I crawl out of bed, ready to face the day with 60 5yr olds I don’t wanna feel at my worst, Thanks. 

So yes, I guess this post is basically me saying I am poorly, it’s last thing at night right now. Of course I feel ill, I would FULLY appreciate some tips for getting through the next few days please as I don’t think I make a very good poorly person, 

What do you think? 

Let me know. 

Big Fashionista x x x 

Monday, 27 November 2017

Christmas Party Ready With Simply Be

So Christmas party season is now creeping up on us fast and I don't know about you but I am at that point in the year where I am so cold, my idea of party wear is a onesie, slippers and a hat.

So, if I am going to dress up, I am going to need to feel a BILLION dollars in my outfit or I am not even playing.

Luckily, Simply Be have got a fantastic party wear section and I am now completely ready for my Christmas party in a Little Mistress dress that is not only Christmas party perfect but can stay in my wardrobe ready for that summer garden party or spring wedding.

Big Fashionista applying lipstick in mirror

Don't forget, when you are browsing for that perfect dress, take a look at the Simply Be beauty section,  I was pleasantly surprised to find brands there such as Clarins, Pixi, MAC and Nars.  If I am creating my whole look from one website, then finding high quality brands such as those fills me with confidence.

Christmas Party dress,

I love the wrap over style of this, the pattern is bold and beautiful and the dress is surprisingly heavy for a floaty dress.  Everything you would expect from a Little Mistress dress from Simply Be.

Big Fashionista

The cut-out arm detail is a great touch too. It looks good and really fits in well. I hate it when a dress has unnecessary detailing, this works.

Arm detailing

If you love the dress, IT IS STILL AVAILABLE, (I hate it when you see dresses that you love and then when you check, it is out of stock) I would say it is very true to size. No need to size up or down.
You can buy it HERE -> Simply Be, Little Mistress Floral Wrap Prom Dress

Simply Be Dress

What do you think of my choice of a Christmas party dress? What are you going to be wearing this Christmas party season?

Let me know.

*This post contains PR Samples

Monday, 13 November 2017

Rules To Ride The Bus By

Now since starting my new job in September, I have become a bus wanker a fully paid-up member of the club of users of public transport.

Now, don't get me wrong. Buses are nice, I get to sit in a seat and someone else drives me to my destination, kindly picking up other bus wankers passengers along the way. It works.

A west Yorkshire Metro bus

BUT, I've noticed that since my daily commute began, I have become a creature of habit and this can be a bit of a problem. I have realised that I now have MY SEAT. This seat is perfect for me, I sit on the back row, on the lower deck, on the left hand side of the bus and it is the way I like it, until one day, SOMEONE SAT IN MY SEAT.

If you ever want to know what betrayal feels like, it is knowing that the bus driver didn't stop the bus immediately, get out of his cab and go up to the seat stealer and say, "Awfully sorry, but you must be new to this route, this seat is actually reserved for Kellie" The seat thief would have immediately apologised and MOVED OUT OF MY SEAT. Everyone would have laughed and we would all have lived happily ever after.

Instead, the driver DID NOTHING. NOTHING, he just carried on driving the bus, knowing FULL WELL that I would be boarding his chariot at exactly 6.53 and be left with a complex decision to make that NO-ONE should have to make pre-7am.

Do I ask them to move out of my seat? Obviously I have paid for it, it is not my fault that unlike trains, the bus service do not allow us to reserve our seats, (If you ever want to make that happen WY Metro, I will be the first to sign up) Do I sit somewhere else? But what if I inadvertently sit in someone else's reserved seat, what happens then? Anarchy, Anarchy is what will happen, I can tell you. Do I NEXT to the person who is sitting in my seat, making them feel uncomfortable enough so that they move at the first opportunity, fleeing the scene, leaving me free to slip into MY seat, or do I just accept the fact that they have overthrown my reign and it is their seat now. The Queen has been ousted, long live the Queen.

Decisions, decisions.

Who knew that riding the bus every day would be filled with such rules?

If you think the ride into work is bad, you should see my journey home, people are packed onto my bus like sardines, I am lucky enough to get onto the bus before the bus turns into a tin can filled with fishy treats but that just means that at some point, SOMEONE WILL SIT NEXT TO ME.

I cannot bear it. Especially if they don't follow the No 1 rule which goes,

If there are no spare 2 seats and you have to sit next to another passenger you don't know, the SECOND a 2-seat becomes free, YOU MOVE TO IT.

THIS IS A RULE AS OLD AS TIME, and yet I have lost count of the amount of people who sit next to me on the bus, sharing my seat as the bus empties out, leaving space for them to move and they still don't move. It makes me uncomfortable, MOVVVVVVEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE.

Is using public transport every day destroying me, do we think?

Should I learn how to drive and save myself the stress of bus rules and non-reserved seating or do you fully understand where I am coming from?

Let me know.


Friday, 3 November 2017

Off The Eaten Path, Tasty Tips, Snacks And Recipes.

Since I have started my new job back in September, I have basically been eating on the run. Two months later and I am craving quick tasty meals and delicious snacks that I eat because they taste nice rather than to just fill a hole.

Luckily, Off The Eaten Path have teamed up with chef and food blogger Deborah Thompson to create three tasty lunch recipes and Deborah has been sharing her top ten tips to create fun, tasty meals. I am hoping that I will be able to use her tips to put the adventure back into my lunch.

Top Tips For Adventurous Eating.

1. Get your adventure on by updating classics like the egg salad sandwich. Deconstruct it and add some exotic spices like dukkah to liven it up. 

2. Swap out traditional ingredients like noodles and lettuce for courgette and kale to
keep things light and full of vitamins and minerals. 

3. Pack snacks that you will actually want to eat. Off the Eaten Path is perfect for this. They’re delicious and great for popping in a lunch bag or a handbag for that snack craving. 

4. Blend sauces and infuse flavours to create new salad dressings and marinades, like the Thai peanut dipping sauce – but keep them on the side until you’re ready to eat. 

5. Pair fruit with savoury foods to create a whole new flavour profile and make the most of seasonal fruit. 

6. Pick foods that can withstand a few hours without refrigeration, like kale for salads and veggie noodles rather than pasta that can go soggy, so that you can get out there adventuring and still enjoy a stellar lunch. 

7. Add micro greens to your dishes. Usually reserved for fancy restaurants, these micro greens, widely available in supermarkets now, pack a flavour and jazz up your meal. 

8. Incorporate baby vegetables and multi-coloured veggies into your lunches such as candy beetroot and rainbow carrots. These all have different flavours than the regular varieties that are widely available. 

9. Use things like carrot tops or beetroot tops to make sauces like pesto. Eliminate waste and create a totally different and adventurous dip/sauce. 

10. Add sliced cucumber and mint to water, rather than lemon for a change.  

These are the sort of tips that I can use. All straightforward, helpful and quick and easy. Perfect for days when I need to nourish myself but have to eat on the run. 

And for those days when you do have a bit of extra time, why not make one of Deborah's delicious recipes to enjoy.

Six Minute Dukkah Egg Salad Box
An exciting (deconstructed) take on the boring old egg salad sandwich. Made with mixed baby greens, a boiled egg, and pistachio dukkah dressing with slices of rye bread.

     Cook an egg in boiling water for 6 minutes and cool in a bowl of cold water for 2-3 minutes.
      Whilst its cooling, pull together a pistachio dukkah dressing by mixing together
1 tbsp. sesame seeds
2 tbsp. coriander seeds
1 tbsp. cumin seeds
50g chopped pistachios
2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
The juice and zest of half a lemon

Set aside the dressing and toss some baby greens, cucumber, onion, baby radish and baby beetroot together.
Slice the boiled egg in half, drizzle with the dukkah dressing and serve with fresh rye bread.

Pairs perfectly with Off The Eaten Path Sea Salt Rice and Pea Chips

Spicy Mango and Cranberry Courgetti Noodle Bowl

This sweet, sour and spicy noodle bowl is fresh and flavoursome to get you through the rest of the day.

●      Spiralise 1 courgette and heat the courgetti noodles in a pan for 2 minutes.
●      Add 1 tsp of grated fresh ginger, ½ a red chilli pepper, 1 tsp of sesame oil and 1 tsp soy sauce to add flavour.
●      Remove from the heat, and place in a bowl. Toss with ½ a mango, peeled and cubed, with 1 tsp of dried cranberries and 2 tbsp. of chopped coriander.
●      Add some sesame seeds to finish the dish.

Pairs perfectly with Off The Eaten Path Sour Cream and Black Pepper

Rainbow Veggie Wraps with Thai Peanut Dipping Sauce

Vibrant, colourful and perfectly packable, this handheld lunch to take to work or for when you’re on the go.

●      Prepare all your vegetables by slicing carrots, cucumber and red cabbage
●      Blend together a sauce ingredients in the blender or in a bowl with a whisk with a combination of Thai peanut dipping sauce, 3 tbsp. smooth peanut butter ½ tbsp. red Thai curry paste, 1 tbsp. lime juice and a dash of fish sauce
●      Set aside and lay some chard leaves flat ready to fill
●      Layer 100g of pre-cooked brown rice, then the veggies and roll the leaves up. Into wraps
●      Slice in half and dip into the peanut sauce

Pairs perfectly with Off The Eaten Path Sea Salt Pea and Pinto Beans

I'm definitely going to be making the Noodle Bowl. 

Do you have any tasty tips for a quick and easy lunch? Which one of the tips above was your favourite? 

Let me know. 

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