Monday, 20 April 2015

Thackery Binx, what took thee so long?

Feels like it's been a while since I updated you on the newest member of my household (named after the little boy/black cat from Hocus Pocus, if you could guess by the title of this post...) Binx! If you've followed the story from the start, Binx was a wild cat I rescued last year. He came into mine and Dexters life rather unexpectedly, but has been welcomed with open arms despite how down right crazy he is. My pals over at More Than were asking about some animal stories in their #PawHumour campaign, so I thought it would be a good excuse for Binx to take the spotlight! He is the absolute LOL of my life (I mean, this boy really cracks me up, every single day)

The first photo is Binx today, versus when I brought him home as a tiny baby. He is absolutely huge now, almost as big as Dexter, and his eye colour has changed from blue to green.

Tiny baby vs rather large kitten! I can't believe sometimes that this is the same cat. The vet said judging by the length of his tail (it's a rather bushy one at that) he is going to be a big strong boy!

Some of Binx's favourite hobbies include sitting in bags, playing fetch with his light up bouncy ball, and watching me take a bath. Creepy, huh. He really doesn't have any idea of personal space. Straws are also a firm favourite, and despite giving him a whole bag of his own straws to play with, he will disregard them ALL for the one in your drink. It made my flat party a bit of a nightmare as no ones drinks/straws were safe!

The best thing that Binx does to make me laugh is this sticky out tongue face. I've no idea how it happens, but when it does he just sorta forgets it's out there. The bottom right photo has to be the most kawaii looking picture of him I've ever taken! Not to mention him looking quite like a soot sprite from the Studio Ghibli films...

As far as friendship goes, these two like to act up when I'm home and chase each other about. However a couple of times I have caught them unaware having a wee cuddle on the couch together! Dexter has been a very patient and kind big brother to Binx, who is a crazy ball of energy and extremely feisty. I often forget now because of his size that he is still just a playful kitten. Would love to hear how anyone else reading this has got on, introducing an adult cat to a crazy kitten. My boys are both house cats, and after Dexter's unicorn hair trauma last year I have pet insurance for them both, and a very supportive Vet who I can always rely on for advice. Binx recently got the snip and I was worried, just after what I had been through with Dexter. Of course, in true Binx style the operation was not straightforward and it turned out one of his you know what's were missing! So they had to perform a full operation on him to go find it. Luckily, it was only hiding high up towards his stomach and they were able to remove it safely.

I know this post has been totally kitty related, but if you are a dog owner then it's pretty important to insure your dog or puppy too. If you choose to go with More Than, they are donating £20 to the RSPCA for each policy sold - which will go towards helping unwanted and neglected animals in England and Wales. Up here in Scotland we have the SSPCA, and it would be amazing if More Than decided to work with them one day soon too (hey, we feel all left out over here!) 

I plan on visiting my local Cat and Dog home in Cardonald this week, as my boyfriend has got a load of old blankets and duvet covers he was going to bin after doing a clear out at the weekend. Cat and Dog homes take these sort of 'softs' as donations. I'll be honest, I can't quite remember what they do with them and I keep meaning to ask (I assume they use them in cages and for bedding) I was working on a tv show a few years ago and the prop buyer asked me to drop off a load of blankets to one, and it's something I've always done ever since! So if you have any old duvet covers, blankets or pillow cases then I'm sure your local Cat and Dog home would appreciate you doing the same ♥

Monday, 13 April 2015

Borrowed from your Boyfriend

I can take a strong guess that I'm not the only one out there who enjoys stealing their other half's clothes. It's like stealing a handful of someone elses chips - they always taste better when they're not your own! It doesn't help when my boyfriend is pretty much a male version of myself, when it comes to sense of humour, favourite foods, music, and taste in clothes...

Oh hey there Pete! This is him, being all sassy in Pinto after we devoured a burrito and some nachos. (I made the school boy error by branching out and getting the nachos instead of my usual burrito. Food envy the whole time he sat there across from me)

In honour of stealing clothes from a man in your life (I'm saying boyfriend, but it could be brother!) New Look challenged Pete to pick a shirt and see who wore it better. Pete wore it with a Topman beanie and jeans, and burgandy Vans. He had never worn a shirt from New Look before but said he would definitely shop there again, cause he's got super long (FREAKY) arms and it was a brilliant fit. Guys make me laugh though, after uploading the first picture to Facebook, Chris from his band saw it and liked it so much, he went out and bought it too! I think boys are just as easily influenced/inspired as girls when it comes to clothes!

The next weekend it was my turn to style it up. I went for a proper comfy Sunday look - Abandon Ship Apparel beanie, the New Look shirt, an Alburn tee (which just happens to be Pete's band - also stolen!) Levi shorts which you can't see because the shirt and tshirt were so long on me.... and my Adventure Time Dr Martens. I would probably wear the shirt in summer tied up with a tighter t-shirt or crop top underneath. That's if Pete lets me get my paws on it again.

Here's a wee close up of my magical Adventure Time boots. They are limited edition, but when my first pair arrived the insole was glued all wonky and was riding right up the inner heel. I could have cried. Luckily the nice people over on the Dr Marten twitter managed to track me down one more pair. They have another bunch of different designs coming out again this year, if you're an Adventure Time fan like myself and didn't manage to grab a pair this time around.

The weather in Glasgow seems to be getting better then worse again, but since it was a Sunday we decided to get wrapped up and go for a mini adventure around our nearest park, Queens Park. I've started wearing this little grey backpack from Spartoo most days in place of my beloved Mulberry. I used to always cram it to the brim and end up with red marks on one shoulder. I think it's what had been causing recent neck pain and headaches. So for the foreseeable future, backpacks for the win! Takes me one step closer to being a real life Finn the Human.

Monday, 6 April 2015

Three ways to wear

I don't rate myself as very much of a fashionista, and really envy all you girls and guys who can effortlessly throw an outfit together. During the week I tend to wear whatever is the least creased in my wardrobe, which doesn't always make for the nicest outfit but I am generally most comfiest in Vans, jeans and a tshirt. Or my pj's, but It's not really socially acceptable to wear those outside without getting strange looks. I got invited to do a style challenge with Asda, called Dress Up With George. The George section back at the Asda over near my old flat is massive and pretty brilliant! A wee mooch around the clothes (and the £5 DVD section, of course) was always a given when in for my weekly shop. George have challenged me to style one of their dresses, three different ways. So here goes!

Look 1 - Saturday Afternoon

For my usual busy Saturday running errands I wore my black and white striped dress with a mint green jumper and some black and white plimsoles. I went to get tattooed that afternoon too, and it was still a comfy little outfit to sit in a tattoo chair for 2 hours.

Look 2 - Job Interview

This second look was my only 'made up' situation of the three, which I wore the next weekend to meet my Gran for a coffee. I thought this combination of the dress with a long sleeved cardigan and some black loafers with little gold buckles would be a good job interview outfit. Especially for someone like myself who is covered in tattoos. In this outfit you can't see that I have any at all! Can't say the same for the piercings mind you. Thank goodness my work are okay about stuff like that though.

Look 3 - Date night

The third look I wore on a date night out for dinner and bowling. I'd had a few wines before I left the house so was silly and didn't check the pictures properly before we left (blaming my tipsy self and not my photographer boyfriend) so you can't really see my shoes but they are these black wedge boots. I'd definitely wear this dress with no tights if the weather was a wee bit warmer, but the evenings are still pretty cold in Glasgow at the moment. Hopefully not for long though!

I've seen fellow bloggers like Lynsay and Amanda absolutely rock this sort of 'three ways to wear' type post. I feel like my selections were a tad on the safe side, which isn't a bad thing but looking back on photos I wish I had been a bit more adventurous! How else would you have styled this black and white striped dress? Or spiced my selections up a bit? Let me know so I can steal your awesome ideas! I can't forget to mention that everything I am wearing above (apart from my Fred Perry rain coat in the first photo) are all from George at Asda. Makes that weekly shop all the more tempting and dangerous for your purse.

Sunday, 29 March 2015

The Daily Face

Hello Sunday, my old friend. It feels like this time of the week comes around far too quickly. It's good during the week for the days to fly in when I'm working 8am-7pm, but when the weekend goes in just as quick I feel a bit sad come Sunday night! But hey ho, I'm chilling on the couch while Pete plays Fifa, dinner is in the oven and once we've rearranged the bedroom I shall have a bath before we settle down for the night. That's what lazy Sundays should be about after all. That and the 'I don't want to go to School tomorrowww' phase which normally kicks in around 9pm...

This is my standard weekend 'running errands' face. I tend to not wear too much makeup to work during the week, and normally tie my hair up so it's nice to take a bit of time to get ready come Saturday. You can see my natural hair colour is coming in thick and fast, which I'm trying to embrace! I'd love to have a lighter set of locks come summer. But going dark over winter was the only way to get rid of my blue hair (which I now miss dearly!)

I got a lovely new pair of Glasses from the new London Retro collection, Retrospective. I've always been one for the square shaped 'geeky' glasses, but I'd been looking to try some more vintage style frames as a wee treat for starting my new job. I ordered my top 4 choices and did the Glasses Direct home trial, which is totally free and means you get to try before you buy. I think it's a great idea for people wanting to buy glasses online and solves the problem of not getting to try them on like you would in the shop. I'm glad I did the home trial because the frames which were my first choice actually didn't suit my face shape at all. I ended up going for the 'Presley' frame.

I love a bit of extra time in bed in the mornings, so it's a quick makeup face for me which literally just consists of mascara, a tiny bit of brown eyeshadow on my brows, the Urban Decay Ultra Definition Powder Foundation and Naked Concealer. I normally always wear liquid foundation with a powder on the top, so a pressed powder foundation is a bit different for me! But this new one from Urban Decay plus the concealer (around my eyes, cheeks and chin) has a fantastic coverage that still feels light to wear. It's quite matte too which is great as I don't have time to top up my makeup during the day, and normally start to go a bit oily across my t-zone come lunch time. In the first photo I am wearing the medium light neutral shade in both, but I think next time I will go for the fair neutral as I don't wear fake tan as much these days. The medium light is probably as dark as I would ever get away with! The foundation comes in 14 different shades and the concealer comes in 8. The only other Urban Decay products I had tried before this was their eyeshadows, but they are standing pretty strong with their Face game now too. I'm intrigued to try their prep spray, primer and setting spray next as I've heard very good things.

Apart from running errands and doing lots of life admin the last couple of weekends, I've also managed to squeeze in a couple of new tattoos! The top one is by Darryl Mullen at Irezumi in Glasgow, and the second one was done by Keely Rutherford at the Scottish Tattoo Convention through in Edinburgh yesterday. She's based in London so I was chuffed to get a space with her while she was up here. I was thinking of doing a tattoo post soon, as I 'wear' them on my body every single day, just like my glasses and a bit of makeup... but they are a slightly more permanent commitment mind you ;) Hope you are having a lovely Sunday whatever you are upto ♥

Thursday, 19 March 2015

Home Sweet Home Tour

The last few months of my life have been pretty hectic and unsettled on the home front. With all my old flatmates departing and a new home for me on the horizon, I packed my life up in December and moved out between Christmas and New year. Not one of my brightest ideas in terms of timing mind you! But thanks to my family and friends, and two very helpful removal men I got there in the end. About a year ago my Uncle bought a flat in Glasgow, a total 'do-er up-er' as they say, to rent out to me when he moved to Singapore (which just happened a couple of weeks ago) So the plan was for me to move back home for the month of January 2015, as he put the final touches to the building work that has taken that full year to complete. The flat was an absolute mess, so he ripped absolutely everything back to the bare bones and started again. I've only shared one 'before' picture in this post, but I'll need to get my hands on the rest, because the difference in what he walked into and what he finished up with is absolutely jaw dropping. I moved in at the start of February, and it's taken up until now for me to properly get unpacked and settled. All I can tell you is that it's one of the most satisfying feelings in the world. So here is a photo tour of my little humble abode...

My living room has a tiny little office just off to the side, which is proving to be the perfect wee hidey hole for all my paperwork, tools, makeup etc. Almost like a second bedroom with a desk and a carpet that I can disappear into and get some work done. If I were a man I would definitely be calling it my man cave!

More Than Home Insurance got in touch to ask me what my favourite contents of my new home were, and I would definitely need to round it up and say my fireplace, and everything that sits on it! My Uncle built it using reclaimed wood and the rudder of an old fishing boat. Resting on top are a pair of antlers which he found while hillwalking up north, my collection of crystals, a gold foil print with one of my favourite quotes by Dottie Rocks, and two lovely Olique Candles. I've got lots of other bits and pieces dotted around the flat which have major sentimental as well as monetary value, which is why contents insurance is so important even if you're just renting like I am. The joys of being a grown up eh!

Remember my babe of a pal Teri from a few posts back? Well Olique is a new candle company run by her brother and his girlfriend. I'd smelled a few when I last stayed over at Teri's house and they were lovely, so I ordered myself a Lemongrass & Green Tea, and a Patchouli Musk & Oudh Woods. I'm a candle fiend as you can see from the little collection illuminating my fireplace. The Lemongrass one is so clean and fresh, and I normally light it during the day when I've been doing the housework. The Patchouli one is a lot more dark and mysterious, so it's perfect in the evening when you're settling down to watch a film with the lights dimmed. I've had these for a couple of weeks now, burning one or both every day, and they're still not even half done! Olique are offering £5 off if you pop in 'AYDEN' at the checkout. I've already got my eyes on the Champagne & Rose Lemonade, and the Pomegranate and Spiced Black Pepper. Both sound almost good enough to eat.

This is the view from my bedroom door looking into the hall, and as you can see before it was a bit of a mess! Walls stripped back to the pipes and brick work. At this point the flooring had been laid down and the bathroom was almost finished. On that note, here's ma' bathroom!

You'll notice that the cats are following me about in most of these pictures. The both of them always want to be involved in no matter what I'm doing around the house. Recently whenever I've had a guest over and been giving them a tour, Dexter and Binx will literally follow us into every room and jump onto any possible surface. Almost as if they're like 'hey, this is our place too!' My Uncle built this platform up to the bath, and to be honest did pretty much everything else in the flat in terms of construction, electrics, tiling, flooring, painting... he comes from a theatre production background so is pretty good at putting his hand to almost anything. He's a bit of a perfectionist like me too, which probably added to the fact that this project took a year to complete. He was also living in London for the whole duration, so was flying up every weekend and taking weeks off work here and there where he could.

Another little favourite is this King Grumpy Cat print I have framed, hanging just above the loo. They do call it the throne after all haha.

The kitchen in my old flat was absolutely tiny (and didn't even have any windows) so this one is absolutely huge in comparison! I've not properly utilised that space in the corner but I think at some point I'd like to get a sofa and tv in there. My living room is nice and cosy but I've found that I spend a lot of time in the kitchen when having people over. The sun comes shining through those big windows during the day and it's absolutely lovely.

Last but not least, my bedroom! Probably the room I'm the least happy with at the moment which still needs a bit of work done. I need to get a curtain rail up and ditch the shabby chic dust sheet I have hanging as a curtain. My wardrobe is on the opposite side, which you can't see in the picture, but I think I will probably give the furniture a shuffle at some point soon because something doesn't feel quite right. Let's call it a work in progress.

Here's Uncle Greig, Gary, Pete and myself at my flat warming last Saturday night. It was so nice to finally get to show all my friends the flat, have some drunken singing and dancing, and I also got some lovely cards and gifts. I honestly forgot that people do that for you when you move into a new home :) For the record, at one point there were around 20 people in my kitchen and it was still a pretty comfortable fit. What is it about people gathering in the kitchen at parties eh? I can't thank my Uncle Chris enough for the blood, sweat and tears he put into this place. I promise I will take the best care of it while he starts his new life in Singapore, and a visit out there to see him in August once I finish this job is definitely on the cards! I feel so content and settled in my new home, and almost like I'm starting a new chapter of my life. One that I could not be more excited for ♥

Monday, 16 March 2015

Take it Easy

Food glorious food. I would be lying if I said that eating wasn't one of my top three things to do in the whole entire world. I'm enjoying cooking at home more and more these days, but there's still something super enjoyable about going out for dinner and trying out all the new places that seem to be popping up all over Glasgow. The city seems to be saturated with burger joints at the moment, with a certain stretch of St Vincent street containing 4 or 5 burger related restaurants all dotted a couple of doors down from one another. I love burgers as much as the next meat eater, but what each of these places does to stand out amongst the crowd is extremely important given the current climate, and close proximity of their competitors. There was word on the street of a new kid in town, so I headed into Glasgow to check it out for myself.

You may have heard of Ed's Easy Diner before, but the name was totally new to me! They have a whole load of restaurants in England, with the first one originating in Soho, London. This American style diner has just opened in the St Enoch shopping centre in Glasgow, with another in Aberdeen and one to open in Inverness soon too.

The menu had a great selection of burgers, hot dogs, chicken, veggie options, salads and sides. Just the right amount where you feel like you have enough to choose from, but also aren't completely overwhelmed with too much choice. I tend to end up doing the 'scanning' thing where I am so hungry, I go over the menu again and again not actually READING anything or taking it in. I enjoyed an ice cold cherry coke and Pete had a fanta while we decided what to have.

Once we had ordered, we made a few old school music selections on the juke box while enjoying the proper kitsch americana decor and atmosphere. I sometimes worry about themed restaurants like this feeling too forced or a bit overdone, but Ed's strikes just the right balance without it becoming a bit of a novelty. I did get a bit over excited when Buddy Holly came on though, and wished I was sitting there with a tea dress and victory rolls in my hair!

Pete went for the Chilli Cheese Burger, which is topped with Chilli Con Carne and American Cheese. He opted for the 'plate' which at £11.35 came with onion rings, sweet potato fries and coleslaw. I got the Slick Dog, which had BBQ Sauce, Bacon and Cheese Sauce. That cheese sauce will be the death of me! I also got the plate meal, and upgraded my fries to wet fries with cheese, because cheese and gravy has to be one of the most stellar combinations I've ever had the pleasure of experiencing. It's the simple things in life, eh? I wasn't a big fan of the coleslaw, but everything else was great right down to the onion rings which were in a deliciously seasoned batter. Nothing felt greasy, and both Pete and myself commented (after the waitress collected two empty plates) that it didn't feel stodgy or heavy at all, like some of these types of restaurants can make you feel afterwards. I was hungry, yes, but surprised at myself for finishing the full portion as it was actually pretty big. You know where you are so full you sorta want to cry and have a big nap after your meal? We didn't feel this way at all!

Not wanting to tempt fate and push ourselves into a food coma, for dessert we decided to share a Nutella Milshake. At £4.75 it was big enough for two, and more than enough to satisfy that sweet tooth that haunts me immediately after a savoury meal. They did have some very tempting sundaes on the menu, so perhaps I'll try one next time! I also just found out that they do breakfast too, which I'll need to check out as I like to keep my french toast and pancakes of Glasgow list updated on a regular basis ;)

It did feel a bit strange going to a proper sit in restaurant in the middle of a shopping centre, but to be honest it was nice to get away from the hustle and bustle of the main streets and up to this little 2nd floor haven in the St Enoch Centre. We signed up for free to Ed's Club while we were there, so both have a voucher to get a free Burger or Hot Dog when we buy a drink next time we visit. I'm becoming quite thrifty in my old age and tend to take advantage of vouchers like this, and normally check sites like Voucher Bin before I am heading out for a meal just in case I can find a wee discount code or 2-4-1 offer. Have you tried any nice new places for eating out lately? Glasgow is becoming a proper busy and bustling hub of great new joints to eat and drink!

Thursday, 5 March 2015

From AM to PM

Hello you lovely lot. Are you glad it's almost the weekend? Working monday to friday for the next 5 months means that I have turned into one of these 'living for the weekend' types, with hump day and friday meaning so much more to me than they normally would. Apart from some painting and picture hanging, I'm pretty much completely settled in the new flat, and hope to do a home tour post soon if you would be interested in having a wee nosy into my new abode? I'm having a flat warming party next weekend, and have been trawling spotify for lots of nostalgic and happy party tunes. So if you have any playlists you recommend that I follow, please send them this way. Stumbled across a few old classics that remind me of high school, one of them being From AM to PM by Christina Milian. SO BLOODY GOOD. It sorta made sense as the title of this post too, as I'd like to share my weekend and outfit pictures with you.

Saturday was Dexter's 3rd Birthday, and oh my that boy is getting grumpy in his old age when it comes to me wanting a picture with him. Cannot believe I have had Dexter for 3 years now, it has absolutely flown in and I literally couldn't imagine life without this furry boy hanging around my feet and coming up for a cuddle. Me and Teri were off to our friend Jen's baby shower on Saturday afternoon and I wore my bird print Volcom dress from Spartoo, and an old faithful little brown belt from Topshop. Makeup wise I fancied adding a touch of glam to my normal daytime makeup look since it was a special occassion, so wore the Smashbox Be Legendary long wear lip lacquer in firecracker. Best way to describe it is that it has the pigmentation and covering of a lipstick, but shine and finish like a lipgloss! It stays on the lips really well too, coming off gradually all over rather than that awful fade in the middle of your lips. The only negative was that wearing this lippie on a windy day meant that my hair kept on blowing about and sticking to my lips, and it was driving me crazy! Which is why I tend to avoid lipgloss in general. But this Smashbox number is too pretty to pass up on.

Probably the most favourite part of my outfit from Saturday were these cuties - Kimberly Floral shoes from Babycham. I remember having Babycham trainers back in high school, which were white and red with cherries all over them! I love the combination of floral and nautical with these shoes, plus this is the shape of heels with a t-bar strap that I find the comfiest to wear. 'Heels' and 'comfy' are never normally two words which I would put in the same sentence!

Just to reiterate if you haven't realised already, I am not the best at outfit posts, knowing how to pose, and getting the right pictures of what I'm wearing! I take my hat off to all you fashion bloggers out there. My dress sense is generally pretty boring but on the odd occasion it's nice to feel good in what you are wearing and snap a few photos. It was really helpful having Teri around as my photographer too! How do you ladies do it when there isn't someone around to take them for you? My tripod and self timer skills need worked on haha.

After we got home from the baby shower it was time to order dinner and watch my friends pal Stevie on The Voice. If you've been watching it recently then you'll already know how awesome he is! Me and Teri got ready, with the aid of Prosecco and some Sailor Jerry, then Leah and Heather came over and we headed to our all time favourite club in Glasgow, the Cathouse! I recently attended the Abandon Ship Apparel Kewpie event where it was pretty much love at first sight getting to preview their Kewpie capsule collection. I ordered this crop and skirt on the tuesday and they arrived at work on the thursday, super quick and perfect timing to wear at the weekend. I was so torn between the above and the fitted vest and high waisted pants! Both so cute but I know I would get more wear out of the skirt and crop. Almost went for the pencil skirt but I've not been feeling as toned after Christmas indulgence... hoping to rectify that and get back on the wagon in the coming weeks. Ordering from Abandon Ship was so quick and easy online (I normally hate online shopping and parcels taking their sweet ass time to get to you) but in Glasgow we are also very lucky to have their flagship store right in the city centre! I plan on popping over to Soar at Intu Braehead at the weekend to look at some new snowboards at TSA, and check out a shop called Librance. They are a Scottish born and bred Skate/BMX etc store, and I've got my eye on a few skate decks to hang on the walls in my flat. I've always been a snowboarder at heart and like my feet strapped in thank you very much... but really want to pluck up the courage to buy a wee penny skateboard. LOOK AT HOW CUTE THEY ARE. Seriously. I want it to be summer, and be a skater girl, and pretend that I'm 18 again, and channel my inner Avril Lavigne.

I guess the rest of Saturday night I did channel my inner 18 year old with much dancing and singing along to Yellowcard and Bowling For Soup at the Cathouse. Sunday consisted of sleeping, lots of cuddles and probably the best hungover scran I have ever experienced. Turns out all of the above is a much better hangover cure than bacon rolls and irn bru. Give me a baked camembert with pancetta and crusty bread every sunday for the rest of my life please. That weekend went in far too fast, but I am excited that it's almost time for the next one :)